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Public Transit Turned Public Restroom: The Metro is good for a lot of things—getting around town, mysteriously stopping underground for a while, finding new and exciting ways to be annoyed by tourists. And now, apparently, also defecation. A rider found a pile of human shit on a pedestrian bridge between the Metro and VRE stations at the Springfield stop on the Blue Line yesterday. Both transit systems insisted it was the other’s problem. Which, to be honest, is probably what we’d do rather than clean it up, too. But still. -3
The Tuition Is Too Damn High: Just how much are people willing to pay to go to college in D.C.? More than almost anywhere else in the country, apparently. George Washington University ranked in the top eight most expensive universities in the latest Education Department rankings of cost, with tuition of nearly $42,000 a year. The University of the District of Columbia, though, was a relative bargain, at only $3,000 a year. We’re off to go buy lottery tickets to put away for tuition for future children now. -2
Comedy As Policy (Or Is It Policy As Comedy?): The Supreme Court almost appeared to be joking last year when it overturned a ban on direct spending by corporations in political campaigns—surely there was a punch line coming, and not just more power for massive conglomerates, right? The punch line arrived today, in the form of Stephen Colbert, as it so often does in politics these days. Colbert visited the Federal Election Commission, which ruled that—in keeping with the Citizens United v. FEC ruling—he can, indeed, form a “superPAC” to spend corporate money on behalf of candidates (and satirize the Citizens United decision, which seems to be his main goal). A crowd gathered outside to throw money at him. You people know he’s “paid handsomely,” and doesn’t really need your money, right? +1
Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word: Commuting delays happen so frequently these days that they’re not, in and of themselves, news. Metro’s response to Green Line problems this morning, though, was. The transit system apologized to riders inconvenienced by single-tracking, caused by a maintenance accident near Fort Totten. No word on what delays were caused by the need to provide medical attention to shocked commuters. +1
Yesterday’s Needle rating: 46 Today’s score: -3 Today’s Needle rating: 43