In his Duke commencement speech on May 13, Rick Wagoner, Duke trustee and chairman and CEO of General Motors, likened problems at GM with the lacrosse scandal that’s sullied Duke’s reputationgreat institutions facing challenging times, he said. “But the really successful people, the real contributors, the really great institutions like Duke University and General Motors, have another important characteristic, which is persistence and resilience.” Bull-headedness is more like it. GM built its business around SUV and pickup trucks, even as gas prices soared. Losses were so huge, the word bankruptcy was batted around. When anyone questioned the strategy, Wagoner balked. Now he says he’s seen the light. “For the first time in my almost 30-year career, I can really see a future for automotive transportation that will consume less, not more, petroleum, and emit less, not more, carbon,” Wagoner told the graduates. Welcome to the 21st century; Honda and Toyota have been waiting.

Big insurers are working to put the brakes on legislation that would require health insurance providers to cover mental illness and chemical dependency, Rob Schofield of N.C. Policy Watch reports. The Mental Health Parity bill has strong support from mental health advocates as well as a proven record in other states. Thousands of people would have access to affordable health care. But behind-the-scenes opposition threatens. “It’s Blue Cross,” Schofield says. “They’ll never publicly come out and say they don’t like this. But the word is they’re trying to force a much more watered-down version of the bill.”

CNN will make its presidential debate footage available to anyone who wants to air, edit or mash it up. The network, a host of the New Hampshire Democratic and Republican debates next month, said: “The presidential debates are an integral part of our system of government, in which the American people have the opportunity to make informed choices about who will serve them. Therefore, CNN debate coverage will be made available without restrictions.”

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