Saturday, June 27, 2009

Devotional Thoughts: ... beyond our reach ...


Elihu makes his closing remarks ...

At this my heart pounds
and leaps from its place.
Listen! Listen to the roar of his voice,
to the rumbling that comes from his mouth.
He unleashes his lightning beneath the whole heaven
and sends it to the ends of the earth.
After that comes the sound of his roar;
he thunders with his majestic voice.
When his voice resounds,
he holds nothing back.
God's voice thunders in marvelous ways;
he does great things beyond our understanding.
He says to the snow, 'Fall on the earth,'
and to the rain shower, 'Be a mighty downpour.'
So that all men he has made may know his work,
he stops every man from his labor.
The animals take cover;
they remain in their dens.
The tempest comes out from its chamber,
the cold from the driving winds.
The breath of God produces ice,
and the broad waters become frozen.
He loads the clouds with moisture;
he scatters his lightning through them.
At his direction they swirl around
over the face of the whole earth
to do whatever he commands them.
He brings the clouds to punish men,
or to water his earth and show his love.

Even the ancients understood the "water cycle" of steam, water and ice. They attributed these things and various meteorological events to God's direct action. Of course, today, we know (though we can't predict) these phenomena are a complex interaction of various physical forces.

Does this mean God has nothing to do with them?

Some feel that as we discover more of the natural laws, God disappears. But what if God put in place those laws?

Elihu continues this theme of God at work in nature ...

Listen to this, Job;
stop and consider God's wonders.
Do you know how God controls the clouds
and makes his lightning flash?
Do you know how the clouds hang poised,
those wonders of him who is perfect in knowledge?
You who swelter in your clothes
when the land lies hushed under the south wind,
can you join him in spreading out the skies,
hard as a mirror of cast bronze?
Tell us what we should say to him;
we cannot draw up our case because of our darkness.
Should he be told that I want to speak?
Would any man ask to be swallowed up?
Now no one can look at the sun,
bright as it is in the skies
after the wind has swept them clean.
Out of the north he comes in golden splendor;
God comes in awesome majesty.
The Almighty is beyond our reach and exalted in power;
in his justice and great righteousness, he does not oppress.
Therefore, men revere him,
for does he not have regard for all the wise in heart?



Beyond our reach ... exalted in power ...

The charge is leveled at God that because evil exists God must not exist.

The traditional response is the mystery of free will.

If there were no human beings on the earth, would there be injustice?

So much of what ails the world today is what humans do to other humans.

No one would say it is unjust for a lion to eat a kudu. The lion has no free will in the matter: she has to kill an animal lower in the food chain to live and feed her cubs.

But we feel injustice when humans kill weaker humans.

We have a sense of "ought-ness." We ought to do this; we ought NOT to do that. And we feel that God OUGHT to do something about it when things go wrong.

And so we wonder why God is waiting around and appears silent.

Beyond our reach ... exalted in power ...

If God is good then somehow it will be "fair" in the end.

If in the end, there is no God then it was all just a dice throw as to what happened in our life. But if there is a God at the end of all this, then all the above that Elihu said makes sense. Scriptures gives us a peek at the end of the story or the whole story. Of course, it requires faith to believe that that story is actually true.

Lord, quite a choice? I suppose one could say I'll live rightly even if there is no "rest of the story" because it makes me feel good to live right. But I do feel it is more compelling to live right whether it feels good (sometimes it does) or not because you are bringing about the "rest of the story." And so I look at the wonders of nature and its vastness and think: we are either in this alone or there is a mighty and loving God who actually cares what is happening to little people on this pale blue dot. Strengthen my spirit to live rightly. Bolster my sense of ought-ness in terms of doing what is right. Amen.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Sports: USA 2 Spain 0

Unbelievable!!

Team USA Men's Soccer had been pretty much left for dead after the pasting they took at the hands of Brazil in game 2 of their group in the Confederation Cup. But a stunning big win over Egypt and a total collapse by Italy allowed the USA to back into the semi-finals where they were expected to be a speed bump for #1 ranked Spain who hadn't lost since 2006.

I wandered over to the student union to see if it was on the big screen TV to catch the last 20 minutes of the game and there were about 200 watching!

Some think the US team doesn't have the talent of the rest of the world while others think they have the talent but not the mental toughness.

Perhaps, the program has turned a corner?

U - S - A, U - S - A, U - S - A !!!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Economics: Health Care Reform

I've always been told that you can't have it all.

In health care, there is a blend of access, cost and quality.

If you want full access for everyone and good quality, it will cost a fortune.

If you want affordable care then you have to give up some quality or access (denial of some services) or both.

Seems to me the main complaint about our current system here in the USA is that if you have pre-existing conditions, coverage is either denied or very expensive or if your company doesn't offer coverage, it is too expensive to buy on your own.

I suppose the government could change the regulations to prevent denial of coverage for pre-existing conditions. I'm sure the insurance companies would resist that but if they had no choice but to cover all applicants, they would jack up the premiums for everyone to help cover the cost of those new more "expensive" customers.

The so called "Obamacare" or "public option" would essentially do the same thing: raise taxes on everyone to help offer coverage through a government run insurance company to those who don't have it for various reasons.

But what about the un-insured who aren't in that category of pre-existing conditions?

People don't have health insurance for two other reasons: they are young and think they don't need it or they don't make enough money to buy it.

For those who don't have enough dollars, one could offer tax credits or vouchers to help them buy it or increase eligibility to Medicaid. Either way requires tax dollars!

But what about those who are young and think they are indestructible?

Unfortunately, there is not much one can do about them. They essentially have to be "scared" into buying insurance.

I suppose the HHS could do public service announcements explaining options for baseline coverage and then give the big stick: you will be fined if you don't have coverage (much like a driver caught without auto insurance is in trouble!) and you risk bankruptcy should you need expensive medical care!

In the end, I think the best option would be for health care insurance to mirror auto insurance: the consumer picks the level of coverage they want or can afford. There should be a legally mandated minimum coverage and then various levels of better coverage for those who want it and can afford it.

People might say, but that's not fair that the rich can get better coverage.

News flash: LIFE IS NOT FAIR!

What we want in our society is for everyone (which we don't have right now) to have some baseline coverage and retain the features (profit motive) that allow for innovation.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

World: What will happen in Iran?

A week and a half ago, it was 20 years since the June 4 "incident" when the Chinese government sent in the tanks to end protests in Beijing.

Today, the situation in Iran feels vaguely similar as a long oppressed people are protesting a totalitarian government.

There is no way to know what will happen or for sure what is actually happening because the government controls so much of what goes on in Iran.

UPDATE: Foreign media banned from covering protests.

But unlike China in 1989, there is the internet.

Andrew Sullivan links to some YouTube videos of what is happening over there.





Hugh Hewitt devoted his entire 3 hour radio show to bringing on guests who have either some knowledge of Iran or world affairs in general.

As an American of Chinese ancestry, I had hopes for the protests in China in 1989 and do hope that some day in the future those brave souls will be publicly honored as heroes in the streets of Beijing.

My mind tells me that totalitarian governments don't give up power easily and that a brutal suppression could be already taking place or will take place in a matter of days. But then again, who would have thought the Berlin Wall would ever come down? Or that the Iron Curtain would be lifted?

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Sports: 15 - 10 - 4, LA Lakers Win the NBA Championship

15th title for the Lakers.

10th championship for Coach Jackson.

4th NBA Finals Series victory for Kobe Bryant.

99-86 Lakers over Magic.

Congratulations to the NBA Champions, the Los Angeles Lakers!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

News: You be the editor

Was scrolling through the news web pages just now (around 5:45 pm on a Saturday afternoon)...







If you were the news editor, what news item would you be featuring as the "big story" of the moment?

I realize, web based news headlines probably change pretty frequently. But I thought it was interesting that at this particular moment, all 5 web pages had different "top stories." Defining "top story," in this context is the one with the largest photo. I suppose that right there is one problem with "headline" news editing: do we have compelling images to put up?

I think the Iranian election story is pretty big. How do some of the news web pages cover it?

ABC featured the protests after the Iranian elections.

CBS had a economics hard time story though the Iranian election was featured in a smaller photo to the upper right.

Fox had a story on the selling of military aircraft with a text item in the upper right about the Iranian elections.

MSNBC had an item about Soweto with the Iranian election in the upper right with a smaller photo.

CNN has a health care and small business item with the Iranian election as a three bullet point news items amidst many other items.

What do some news web pages outside the USA think?

BBC News...



The China's People's Daily. Please note that the People's Daily is controlled by the Chinese Communist Party. One can find a bullet point item on the Iranian elections way down at the bottom of the web page.



The Buenaos Aires Herald...



The Syndey Morning Herald had a small item on the Iranian elections down toward the bottom in the world section.



Kenya's Nation... Iranian election news is in the latest news and further down in the world section.



As a question, if I want to get news from sources outside the USA, which ones would be reliable? Which ones would be mouthpieces of their governments?

I choose the various outside the USA sources by trying to think of each continent outside of North America and then of a country or city in that continent.

Business: Palazzo Pizza and Pasta, Glendale, CA

I help out with the youth group at my church and so I've bought some pizza on a couple of occasions.

I could have gone with a national chain but I thought I'd try one of the local stores.

Palazzo Pizza and Pasta
233 1/2 North Brand Blvd.
Glendale, CA 91203
818-500-8485

I give it thumbs up! Good pizza, friendly service and reasonable prices.

As of Saturday 13 June 2009, what do the "voters" on the internets say?

5 out of 6 at Urbanspoon.com gave it a thumbs up.

3 mixed reviews over at Yelp.

1 positive review at Citysearch.

8 positive "Rah" comments at BooRah.com.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

World: Spin of the globes trouble spots

I'd hate to be working for the US State Department or any foreign ministry of a major country.

There are so many trouble spots in the world that could blow up!

North Korea has the bomb and is lobbing missiles while starving its own people. What can anybody do?

Making an analogy, if someone was holed up in their house randomly shooting a gun into the street while starving their kids, the police would surround the house and try to talk that someone into dropping the gun and letting the kids out. And if that didn't work, at some point they would probably raid the house.

But you can't "raid the house" when that country has nukes and an army of 700,000.

I suppose a strike on nuclear facilities is a possibility. But the fact that that hasn't been done suggests to me that in this case, it is probably too hard for it to be successful.

In 1981, the Israelis hit the Iraq nuclear plant at Osirak.

In 2007, Israeli hit a Syrian nuclear plant.

My impression is that if one is going to go with the military option, it has to be done when the nuclear facility is fairly small and not extensively built out yet.

In the case of North Korea, they already have the bomb and an extensive nuke program.

It looks like the Iranian nuke program is getting bigger and nobody can really stop that one either. It also doesn't help that Russia is actually helping them build the thing.

Thus, the same situation holds with Iran as North Korea, it might be too big to hit militarily from the air and the Iranians have 350,000 in their army so sending in ground forces to take down the plants would be difficult.

So it appears, the world will probably have to live with a nuclear Iran and North Korea. One can only hope that they will back track on their plans or at the very least open their plants to extremely vigorous inspection. Now, how do you get them to do that .... ???

Science: WHO declares pandemic

It's official.

Excerpts:

GENEVA - The World Health Organization has told its member nations it is declaring a swine flu pandemic - the first global flu epidemic in 41 years.

The move came Thursday as infections climbed in the United States, Europe, Australia, South America and elsewhere.

In a statement sent to member countries, WHO says it decided to raise the pandemic alert level from phase 5 to 6, meaning that a global outbreak of swine flu has begun. The decision was made after the U.N. health agency held an emergency meeting on swine flu with its experts.
.........
In Edinburgh, Sturgeon told lawmakers that a WHO announcement means countries should immediately activate their pandemic plans.

"A move to level 6 is not a verdict on the severity of the virus," she said. "It simply means that the extent of global spread now fulfills the definition of a pandemic."

It would be the first flu pandemic in 41 years, since the Hong Kong flu of 1968.

As long as there isn't a mutation increasing the lethality of the virus, this move appears to sound worse than it actually is.

Stay tuned.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Sports: Who is running the NHL?

Hmm... game 6 of the Stanley Cup is on the same night as game 3 of the NBA Finals.

Wonder what genius in the NHL came up with that plan?

I watched game 1 on TV the other weekend. I had forgotten how much fun and how FAST hockey is to watch!

World: Sometimes war in the answer?

Pakistani villagers fighting the Taliban.

Excerpt:

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (CNN) -- Hundreds of Pakistani villagers who have formed an anti-Taliban militia battled for the fourth day Tuesday to remove the Islamic militants from a region of northwest Pakistan.

The Pakistani military is supporting the militia, or "lashkar," in Upper Dir district on the request of local officials and tribal elders, military spokesman Maj. Gen. Athar Abbas told CNN.

Outraged over a suicide attack on a local mosque during Friday prayers, about 400 residents formed the militia early Saturday and began battling Taliban militants. The attack on the anti-Taliban mosque killed at least 40 people and wounded 80 others.

When it is possible, peaceful means should be used to resolve problems. But sometimes, people have to stand up and say, enough, we aren't going to take this anymore.

Hats off to these brave Pakistani villagers!

Monday, June 08, 2009

Economics: What will the health care reform plan look like?

There are the occasional stories about what the program might look like.

There is the "pay or play" of mandating businesses to offer health plans or pay into a government fund.

What might that government fund do?

Perhaps provide tax credits for people to buy their own insurance.

Perhaps fund a government insurance program like Medicare except it would be for those pre-retirement age.

Would taxing businesses be enough?

Another idea going around is taxing the health benefits of individuals that are currently offered pre-tax through employment. I'm told that the reason for the linkage of insurance benefits as part of employment compensation was a "historical accident" when companies wanted to bypass wage controls.

It could be a combination of all of this.

If you are a free-marketeer seeing this tidal wave coming which plan would you support?

In the end, the government sponsored bankruptcy of Chrysler and the majority control of shares in the GM bankruptcy might be small potatoes compared to a massive increase in government control of the health care system. And unlike GM, where it is likely the Government would get out (sooner or later), it would be unlikely that the Government would get out of the health care business.

P.S. It should be noted that the Federal government already has considerable control over the health care systems of the USA: Medicare (for retirees is funded by the Feds), Medicaid (welfare health program funded by Feds and States), VA (funded and run by the Feds), Military (the various uniformed services run health systems) and IHS (Indian health service is run and funded by the Feds).

P.S.S. In the UK, they have the national health service where the government hires the medical professionals and pays for the services through taxes. In Canada, they have "single payer" where the government is the national insurance company and it is funded by taxes. In the USA, we have these two approaches for some parts of health care delivery plus a private insurance system.

UPDATE: According to this item the government already account for 47% of health care spending. Excerpt:

Sadly, we are already well on our way to a wholly government-run health insurance system. After fall, about 47 percent of all health care expenses today are paid for by federal, state, and local governments, e.g., Medicare, Medicaid, and State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). Establishing a public insurance scheme would dramatically increase the percentage of health care that is paid for by the federal government.

What would be the consequences of a parallel government insurance and private insurance?

The Lewin Group crunched the numbers through their health care model and found that premiums for the public option plan would be 30 to 40 percent lower than private plans. Sounds great, right? But these lower premiums are essentially achieved by imposing price controls. The Lewin Group assumed that the public option plan will pay doctors and hospitals at the same rates they currently receive from Medicare. And Medicare reimbursements already run 71 percent and 81 percent below what private health plans pay hospitals and doctors, respectively.

First, the somewhat good news. Lower public option premiums and an increase in Medicaid coverage would attract 28 million of the 48 million Americans who currently are not covered by health insurance. Now the bad news. The lower premiums would encourage employers to drop private health insurance and put their employees into the public plan. Overall, the Lewin Group estimates that if Medicare reimbursement rates are imposed, the number of Americans with private health insurance would decline by almost 120 million, leaving only 50 million Americans in the private insurance market.
.........
The best result of creating a parallel public insurance scheme is that the United States would end up with an explicit two-tier medical system in which privately insured Americans have better access to better medical care. Such two-tier health care systems already exist in countries with national health care schemes such as the United Kingdom and Germany. In the United Kingdom, more and more Britons are opting for private health insurance instead of remaining with that country's National Health Service. Privately insured Americans would get higher quality health care, but because the market for medical innovation would be smaller, everybody will get worse care than they would otherwise have received had most health care not been nationalized.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Sports: Sunday Sports Round-Up

Big sports day in Los Angeles.

Lakers take on Miami in game two of the NBA finals at Staples Center in downtown LA. Coverage on ABC-TV. Some fans think the Lakers have this thing in the bag. Not so fast. It was just one game. In any case, observers like Adande are saying that the Laker's Odom might be a key piece to winning it all. Excerpt:

In his past three games, which have gone down as the Lakers' three best performances of the playoffs, Odom had 19 points and 14 rebounds in Game 5 of the Western Conference finals, 20 and eight in Game 6, then 11 and 14 in Game 1 of the Finals. Money-making time, right?
.......
"If [money] was the case, I would just shoot; I would try to get 20 points," Odom said. "Right now, it's not really what's important. What's important is for us to win the championship. Everybody's happy after that."

Sometimes it takes another player to appreciate just what it's like to compete under these circumstances. Lakers guard Derek Fisher went through it in 2004, losing his starting job to Gary Payton before leaving the Lakers to sign with the Golden State Warriors.

"This may be your last big free-agent contract," Fisher said. "You want to maximize it. Now you're in this limited role. It is a tough spot to be in. When you're on a championship-caliber team like we have, it makes it easier for you to accept your circumstances."

So much has been made of Kobe's burning desire to win this championship. You don't think Odom, at age 29, wants one badly as well? Now he's three victories against the Orlando Magic from making it happen.

"This is it," he said. "I've been playing basketball for a long time."

He broke it down, from AAU to high school at Christ the King in New York; college in Rhode Island; and a decade in the NBA with the Clippers, Heat and Lakers.

"For my family, for my friends, everybody that grew up around me, this is big," Odom said. "This is what it's all about."


Meanwhile, up the Pasadena freeway, the Dodgers take on last year's MLB champion Philadelphia in a Sunday night game of the week on ESPN. Weisman of Dodger Thoughts points out that Dodger pitching has been doing pretty well. Excerpts:

Before this season began, there was considerable faith in the Dodgers offense but considerable worry (though not really from me) about whether Los Angeles had enough pitching to win.
......
The Dodgers have allowed 2.0 runs a game in the last four games, 2.8 runs in their last 10 games and 3.5 in the 28 games since the day after the Suspension Day meltdown. (Yes, I'm leaving the 11-9 loss out.)

You can sit around waiting for Randy Wolf to get hurt (like Hiroki Kuroda was) or Ramon Troncoso to come back to Earth (like Cory Wade kind of did) or Chad Billingsley to stop fulfilling his All-Star potential (like Clayton Kershaw still looks to do), but the fact is that for nearly 60 games in 2009, the Dodgers pitching has not only been adequate, it's been the best in the National League.

In other sports news, the Detroit Red Wings took game 5 to take a three games to two lead in the Stanley Cup. Wetzel of Yahoo! Sports summed up game five this way:

DETROIT – Red in the stands, blood in the water.

In a show of force, a sign of dominance, Detroit took one look at Pittsburgh tying the Stanley Cup Finals at two games a piece and mocked their young opponent’s ambition.

No, they won’t say such a thing – too disciplined, too polite, too Swedish they are.

And by the time Pittsburgh turned the third period of Game 5 into a slash and high stick parade, what did it matter? The point was made. If using a critical game to leave Pittsburgh in critical condition thanks to a 5-0 bludgeoning doesn’t say it, nothing will.

The Red Wings are 60 minutes from their 12th Stanley Cup – and fifth in 12 seasons – because when the Penguins dared to turn this from a coronation into a series, Detroit wasn’t unnerved as much as annoyed.


Lastly, Team USA took a positive step toward qualifying for the World Cup in winning against Honduras after getting rolled on Wednesday by Costa Rica in an embarrassment. Excerpt:

CHICAGO -- Clint Dempsey flubbed a backheel five minutes in, Honduras pounced on it and the United States fell behind early for the second time in four days.

"Here we go again," U.S. captain Carlos Bocanegra thought.

Only this time, for the first time in 24 years, the Americans came from behind to win a World Cup qualifier.

Landon Donovan converted a penalty kick in the 43rd minute and Bocanegra scored on a diving header off Dempsey's knock-down header in the 68th Saturday night for a key 2-1 victory over Honduras.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

World: 65 years ago ...



image source: http://webserver.mcl.org/subj/bibdday.html

Eisenhower's remarks to the troops on D-day:

Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force!

You are about to embark upon the Great Crusade, toward which we have
striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you. The
hopes and prayers of liberty-loving people everywhere march with you.
In company with our brave Allies and brothers-in-arms on
other Fronts, you will bring about the destruction of the German war
machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of
Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.

Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well
equipped and battle hardened. He will fight savagely.

But this is the year 1944! Much has happened since the Nazi triumphs of
1940-41. The United Nations have inflicted upon the Germans great defeats,
in open battle, man-to-man. Our air offensive has seriously reduced their
strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the ground. Our Home
Fronts have given us an overwhelming superiority in weapons and munitions
of war, and placed at our disposal great reserves of trained fighting men.
The tide has turned! The free men of the world are marching together to
Victory!

I have full confidence in your courage and devotion to duty and skill in
battle. We will accept nothing less than full Victory!

Good luck! And let us beseech the blessing of Almighty God upon this great
and noble undertaking.

SIGNED: Dwight D. Eisenhower

US Army page about D-day.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Sports: Dodgers by the numbers

Dodgers fans are pretty happy considering the early injuries and the big 50 game suspension that has sidelined the Mannywood Show.

The 37-19 record is the best in the MLB.

But a look behind the numbers show that the Dodgers have been beating up on the Western Division teams: 25-9!

Outside of that the Dodgers are a mere 12-10!

The Phillies who beat them in the NLCS are 32-20 overall with a 17-11 record against their Eastern Division siblings. Outside that group, they are 15-9!

The Angels who took the recent Freeway series are 27-25 overall but looking only at out of division they are 18-13.

Of course, long suffering Dodger fans always know there is always trouble just around the corner and find reasons to be concerned. That vague sense does have some numerical basis!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

World: 20 years ago ...

Security tight in Tiananmen on 20th anniversary.

The story behind the iconic photo of the lone man.

Richard Roth remembers reporting from the scene by cell phone.



It was his reports played on the radio on KNX-1070 where I first heard of the military crackdown.

BBC news report (text) from 20 years ago by Kate Adie and video clip of her on the scene.

Kate Adie went to China this past May and shares having to evade security police to conduct interviews.

Un-narrated footage from CBS cameraman Brian Robbins.


Watch CBS Videos Online

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Economics: GM no longer General Motors now Government Motors

Though Chrysler isn't owned by the US Government like General Motors, the deal that was structured was dictated by the government.

I wonder what the bankruptcy deal for Chrysler would have looked like if the Feds had kept their hands off?

Likewise, what would a restructured GM look like if the Feds had kept their hands off?

Instead, we have the Federal Government in the auto business.

It is now Government Motors.

Here is an article itemizing what is wrong with this picture.

Excerpts:
If Obama has no interest in running GM or the car industry, why did he support onerous and expensive social engineering via fuel standards at the time when the auto industry and consumers were suffering most?

If Obama has no interest in running GM, why did his administration bankroll and nationalize the company while perpetuating the myth that it could save it, after nearly every expert on the planet understood its fate was bankruptcy?

If the administration has no interest in making "difficult decisions," why did it push out GM's CEO, Rick Wagoner, and appoint yes man Fritz Henderson (who conveniently abandoned GM's long-standing opposition to economically destructive fuel-efficiency regulations)?

If Obama has no interest in running GM, why, as The Wall Street Journal pointed out, did the administration give assurance to the city of Detroit that GM would not move its headquarters?

And why did the Treasury Department strong-arm bondholders, wipe out all shareholders and magically erase almost all of the $172 billion of debt rather than allow these issues to be worked out impartially during a traditional bankruptcy?

If it's not about having the Obama administration run things, why did the president hand the United Auto Workers, a rock-ribbed political supporter, a sweetheart ownership deal for pennies on the dollar?

===

Its an outrage.

UPDATE: In the end, the deal may go through as is but for the moment the US Supreme Court has issued an order staying the purchase of shares in Chrysler by Fiat. Excerpt:
Reporting from Washington -- The Supreme Court issued a one-line order Monday afternoon that keeps on hold for now the Chrysler bankruptcy deal that would lead to a merger with Italian automaker Fiat.

Since Saturday, the justices have been considering several emergency appeals challenging the deal. One from several Indiana pension funds contends that the deal is illegal and unconstitutional because it shortchanges these bond holders. They would receive only 29 cents on the dollar for their bonds, and they say Chrysler's unions and employees were treated better in the bankruptcy.


I wonder if anyone is/will challenge the GM bankruptcy plan?