Mic Check: Dear Congress, Thanks For Not Screwing Over Students

1. Senators craft bipartisan student loan deal
A bipartisan group of Senators has come up with a new student loan rate proposal according to anonymous Senate aides. The deal would set interest rates on Stafford loans at 3.85% for undergrads, 5.4% for grad students, and 6.4% for parents. The bill would allow interest rates to change with the market, but would set a cap on interest rates for undergrads at 8.25%. If the bill passes, it will most likely end the student loan debate: The House has already passed a similar bill. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) says the Senate will vote on the new proposal any day now.
 
More from around the web:
The 112th Congress was the least productive ever (Washington Post).
 
Is that a good thing? (Washington Post)
 
• Check out the shocking stats on student loan debt (ASA).
 
More From PolicyMic:
• Lauren Gilbert, Is Oregon the State to Save Us From Crushing Student Loan Debt?
 
2. Detroit becomes largest U.S. city to file for bankruptcy
Detroit became the largest U.S. city ever to file for bankruptcy on Thursday, declaring it could not pay the $18.5 billion in debt it owes. “From a financial point of view, let me be blunt, Detroit is broke,” said Michigan Governor Rick Snyder. Detroit’s financial problems can be traced to its shrinking population: The city’s population has fallen by almost two-thirds, from 1.8 million in 1950 to 658,000 today. Detroit no longer raises enough revenue through taxes to pay its debts. Now the city has to figure out who it will pay back; either the city’s employees or private creditors are going to be very unhappy.
 
More from around the web:
• The 10 largest private bankruptcies in U.S. history (TIME).
 
America’s richest and poorest cities (NBC News).
 
More From PolicyMic:
• Rick Matthews, To See Detroit's Decline, Look at 40 Years Of Federal Policy
 
3. Egyptian military planned to overthrow Morsi for months
The Associated Press published a report on Wednesday that provides shocking insight into the ouster of former Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi: The AP claims the Egyptian military plotted to overthrow Morsi for months. The wire service interviewed defense officials and found that Morsi tried to demonstrate his power by controlling the military, while the country’s top general defied his orders at least twice. “The degree of their differences suggests that the military had been planning for months to take greater control of the political reins in Egypt,” the AP concludes. They claim the massive protests that erupted at the end of June simply provided the military with the opportunity to put their plan into action.
 
More from around the web:
• Weeks after the ouster, the military and Islamists are far from a deal (NY Times).
 
• Now that he’s been deposed, where is Mohamed Morsi? (TIME)
 
More From PolicyMic:
• Mariam Elbe, Dear TIME Magazine: Thanks For Nothing. Love, Egypt
 
4. Yemeni academic calls for drone justice
Yemeni academic Nasser al-Awlaki published a powerful op-ed in the New York Times on Thursday that I highly recommend reading. Awlaki tells us about his grandson, Abdulrahman. He was a normal teenager who liked to watch The Simpsons, listen to hip-hop, and read Harry Potter books. He also describes how an American drone killed his grandson. Awlaki is infuratied that American courts refuse to hold the government responsible for the drone program; they claim it is “outside the court’s jurisdiction.” “The government has killed a 16-year-old American boy. Shouldn’t it at least have to explain why?” he asks.
 
More from around the web:
• Drones: everything you ever wanted to know but were too afraid to ask (Mother Jones).
 
• Here are three minutes of highlights from Rand Paul’s epic drone filibuster (Washington Post).
 
More From PolicyMic:
• Robert Taylor, Drones Are Becoming a Major U.S. Export, and They Kill Democracy in Every Nation They're Shipped To
 
5. Netflix takes Emmy nominations by storm
Netflix’s original series netted 14 Emmy nominations on Thursday, marking a major milestone for online TV. The political drama House of Cards received nine nominations, while Arrested Development and Hemlock Grove landed Netflix five more. But while the nominations will certainly raise the profile of online TV, how much have things really changed? HBO remains the network to beat, with 108 nominations. That’s 27 more than last year. CBS and NBC tied for second with 53 nods apiece.
 
More from around the web:
• Check out the complete list of nominations (Hollywood Reporter).
 
• This House of Cardinals spoof made the rounds when Pope Benedict XVI resigned.
 
More From PolicyMic:
• Steven Goldstein, Emmy Nomination Snubs: Breaking Down the Best Choices and Biggest Upsets
 
Dessert
• Why American students don’t major in science (Bloomberg).
 
• You might travel from SF to LA in 30 minutes in the not-so-distant future (Verge).
 
• You’ll be surprised where the food in your kitchen comes from (Quartz).
 
10 epic treehouses cooler than your apartment (Mashable).
 
5 weird things named after presidents (NPR).
 
Thanks for reading!
Nick
 
Don’t be a stranger; I love getting feedback. Find me on twitter @nicholascbaker.
 
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