Friday, December 31, 2010
"Four days after a monster blizzard blanketed much of the northeastern U.S., New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said he will investigate whether sanitation workers intentionally delayed cleanup efforts over frustrations regarding citywide budget cuts..."
Anymore, blaming the troops always works, just ask the school teachers.
Thursday, December 30, 2010
Political motivation? Nah. Your opponents want to keep you in politics as long as possible, ma'am.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
"...Al Qaeda wants America and the world to believe bin Laden is still alive. His image is a specter of the horrors of Sept. 11, helping build public support for everything from troop surges a globe away to warrantless wiretaps at home.
Here's a challenge to al Qaeda: Send a new video that can be analyzed properly. Otherwise, we'll take it all as a big scam, al Qaeda's version of "Saturday Night Live." Otherwise, you betcha, he's dead."
Monday, December 27, 2010
Sarah Palin sneers at 'conservationists who write me nasty letters': A 'Sarah Palin's Alaska' review | Ken Tucker's TV | EW.com:
"Sarah Palin visited a logging camp, picked up a chainsaw, and helped cut down a tree during this week’s Sarah Palin’s Alaska. Later, after playing a spirited game of “Eskimo bingo” with some loggers’ families, Palin sneered at “conservationists [who] write me nasty letters because I support [logging], usin’ their pretty little pencils and their pretty little stationery, not realizin,’ where do you think your pencil and your stationery comes from? It came from a tree that was harvested!”..."
"...The war in Iraq has not made the United States better off and it certainly has not promoted stability in the Middle East. This feckless policy resulted in the deaths of 4748 of our soldiers and marines, wounded more than 30,000, cost hundreds of billions of dollars, led to an increase in international terrorism in 2003 and 2004, and spread Iranian influence and power throughout the region.
The notion that Iraq is undergoing a “national reconciliation” is Alice in Wonderland territory. You think Iraq today is friendlier towards Israel that it was under Saddam? Hell no. You think Iraq is friendlier towards Iran today than it was under Saddam? Hell, yes. And that makes the Middle East better off?
Good save us from these rightwing loons."
Sunday, December 26, 2010
Saturday, December 25, 2010
"Gov. Neil Abercrombie of Hawaii, who befriended President Obama’s parents when they were university students here, has been in office for less than three weeks. But he is so incensed over “birthers” — the conspiracy theorists who assert that Mr. Obama was born in Kenya and was thus not eligible to become president — that he is seeking ways to change state policy to allow him to release additional proof that the president was born in Honolulu in 1961..."
Remember The Big Lie-- "if you repeat a thing long enough and loud enough, people, no matter how outrageous the claim, will begin to regard it as truth"--- attributed to various Nazis if I remember correctly.
Friday, December 24, 2010
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
When she finally got into the house, it was empty. All of her possessions were gone: furniture, her son’s ski medals, winter clothes and family photos. Also missing was a wooden box, its top inscribed with the words “Together Forever,” that contained the ashes of her late husband, Robert.
The culprit, Ms. Ash soon learned, was not a burglar but her bank. According to a federal lawsuit filed in October by Ms. Ash, Bank of America had wrongfully foreclosed on her house and thrown out her belongings, without alerting Ms. Ash beforehand..."
And 100: "...OK, I already knew about the fans. Last summer, three-quarters of the people standing in line so they could buy the new iPhone the moment it went on sale already owned an iPhone. But now it's the company, too. Look at how it reacted last spring, when a Silicon Valley blogger scooped an early iPhone 4: Next thing he knew he was being handcuffed on his lawn in front of his wife while police ransacked his house. And think of Steve Jobs, complaining that news coverage of the iPhone 4's troubled aerial had been "blown so out of proportion that it's incredible." Hmmm, out-of-proportion media coverage—you sure you want to go there, Steve? This is the guy marketing a new telephone under the slogan "This changes everything. Again." Maybe this stuff shouldn't matter to me, but I have to confess it's turning me off."
"With the lame-duck session nearing an increasingly bitter end, Senate Democrats are now accusing Republicans of abandoning 9/11 heroes because of their concerns with a bill that would pay for the health care of the first responders to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid lobbed that accusation Wednesday in a broadside against the Republicans he says are trying to stall a final vote by 'running out the clock' on the lame-duck session..."
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
"...Much the same has been true for millions of Americans up and down the income scale. Perhaps the most sacred of all the sacred cows in the tax code, the home mortgage deduction has long been seen as crucial to a major element of the American dream — owning your own home.
It has also been a boon to home builders, construction workers, the financial services industry and local governments that benefited from fatter real estate tax revenue.
But nearly a century after coming into existence, the mortgage deduction may face a day of reckoning. Although out of the spotlight while the lame-duck Congress thrashes to an end, the mortgage deduction issue is likely to resurface next year when the new Congress — including a lot more deficit-hawk Republicans — takes over.
In part, the hoary deduction has a target on its back as a result of policymakers rethinking the whole issue of homeownership. In the wake of the havoc that followed the latest housing bust — a calamity that still shadows the U.S. economy and will for years to come — it's no longer so clear that near-universal homeownership should be a paramount goal..."
Monday, December 20, 2010
18 December 2010 11:10AM
"...If only Al Gore hadn't caved in when Bush cheated his way to power, we could be living in an entirely different world.."
"When historians look back at 2008-10, what will puzzle them most, I believe, is the strange triumph of failed ideas. Free-market fundamentalists have been wrong about everything — yet they now dominate the political scene more thoroughly than ever.
How did that happen? How, after runaway banks brought the economy to its knees, did we end up with Ron Paul, who says “I don’t think we need regulators,” about to take over a key House panel overseeing the Fed? How, after the experiences of the Clinton and Bush administrations — the first raised taxes and presided over spectacular job growth; the second cut taxes and presided over anemic growth even before the crisis — did we end up with bipartisan agreement on even more tax cuts?..."
"Jimmy Carter is putting the out in outspokenness.
In an interview with bigthink.com, the former president was asked, “Is the country ready for a gay president?”
Even as John McCain and other ossified Republicans were staging last-minute maneuvers to torpedo the “don’t ask, don’t tell” repeal, the 86-year-old Carter was envisioning a grander civil rights victory..."
Sunday, December 19, 2010
"Shepard Smith excoriated the Senators who are holding up the so-called 'Zadroga Bill' to assist 9/11 first responders who suffer from medical problems as a result of their time at Ground Zero. The bill, which provides $7 billion for the responders, passed the House but is being held up by Republicans in the Senate.
Speaking to Fox News colleague Chris Wallace on Friday, Smith asked, 'How do they sleep at night after this vote on Ground Zero first responders from 9/11? Are they going to get that done, or are we going to leave these American heroes out there to twist in the wind?'..."
I understand he's also selling beach front property in South Dakota.
Saturday, December 18, 2010
"...The idea? Make it possible for your wireless provider to monitor everything you do online and charge you extra for using Facebook, Skype or Netflix. For instance, in the seventh slide of the above PowerPoint, a Vodafone user would be charged two cents per MB for using Facebook, three euros a month to use Skype and $0.50 monthly for a speed-limited version of YouTube. But traffic to Vodafone’s services would be free, allowing the mobile carrier to create video services that could undercut NetFlix on price.
In short, you’d have a hard time creating a better graphic of the future that net neutrality advocates warn will be imminent if the federal government does not apply fairness rules to the mobile internet. A court struck down an earlier set of fairness rules in the spring, but it was never clear if those rules applied to wireless carriers..."
Don't you just love how private enterprise horns in on public property (the Internet) and then wants to charge us for using our service? Maybe Verizon will buy the rights to a National Park then start charging admission or Wall Street will get their hands on Social Security and start charging us a monthly transaction fee. Do not ever give an inch to these evil, greedy bastards.
"The world's most powerful gun is one step closer to becoming the super-weapon of the future.
The Navy on Friday demonstrated a record-setting 33-megajoule shot from its developmental electromagnetic rail gun, a weapon that will be able to shoot farther than conventional guns. This weapon of the future could someday go on U.S. Navy ships, but for right now, it's a science and technology project..."
Friday, December 17, 2010
"...The claim that the health care overhaul bill reflects a "government takeover of healthcare" has won the "lie of the year" award from the fact-checking website Politifact.com.
The Pulitzer Prize winning website, which is associated with the St. Petersburg Times, noted in announcing the award that "it is inaccurate to call the plan a government takeover because it relies largely on the existing system of health coverage provided by employers..."
"...Now imagine this scenario somewhat differently. Your 16 year old announces that her English class will be reading Great Expectations. Fabulous, you think. A real piece of literature, a break from the Twilight nonsense and the watering down of education. “What will you discuss?” you ask your child. “Oh, we don’t know yet,” she says. “My teacher has never read it before. In fact, she’s never read any Dickens. She just thought it would be fun to read this with a cup of tea in hand!” My guess is that you would be annoyed.
And yet, Oprah does just that, only it’s worse: She has asked millions of people to follow her into some of the more difficult prose to come out of the nineteenth century—prose she knows nothing about. Put simply, a TV host whose maxim is to “live your best life” is not an adequate guide through the complicated syntax of Dickens, not because she lacks the intelligence—she is quite clearly a woman of savvy—but because her readings of the texts are so one-dimensional.
Oprah’s approach to her Book Club is all about herself. Her recent announcement contained not a word of reasoning or insightfulness about Dickens’s work; instead, she explained her reason for picking two of his novels by shouting, in a lame attempt at literary humor, “Cause it’s the best of times!” Just as she deems her “favorite things” worthy of an annual consumer-fest, she happily pushes to her audience of millions whatever books she herself wants to read..."
Thursday, December 16, 2010
"...Today, the supposed threat to free enterprise is a law that’s broader, if less radical, than Medicare: the bill Congress passed this year to create a system of privately run health insurance for everyone. On Monday, a federal judge ruled part of the law to be unconstitutional, and the Supreme Court will probably need to settle the matter in the end.
We’ve lived through a version of this story before, and not just with Medicare. Nearly every time this country has expanded its social safety net or tried to guarantee civil rights, passionate opposition has followed.
The opposition stems from the tension between two competing traditions in the American economy. One is the laissez-faire tradition that celebrates individuality and risk-taking. The other is the progressive tradition that says people have a right to a minimum standard of living — time off from work, education and the like..."
I have a simpler explanation: fear.
"...Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, called the GOP hypocritical, noting that a large number of the earmarks in the bill had been previously requested by Republican members. Durbin also said the legislation had been set at $1.1 trillion in order to satisfy McConnell's demands.
This is 'the very same number' the Republican leader insisted upon, Durbin said. 'You can't have it both ways.'
South Carolina GOP Sen. Jim DeMint, a leading voice of the Tea Party movement, has said he and other conservatives may force the massive bill to be read out loud before it can be debated in order to ensure that everyone knows all the provisions it contains.
Reading the bill could take 50 hours... "
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
"Though millions of workers face rising health insurance costs and dwindling benefits in 2011, many CEOs will retain employer-paid medical plans and health benefits worth thousands of dollars.
Hundreds of top corporate managers get medical benefits and supplemental coverage far beyond what's offered to rank-and-file employees. Benefits include 'executive' physicals and reimbursements for out-of-pocket costs, deductibles and co-payments, according to corporate filings..."
Okay, the bullets are flying, you're pinned down but you see a way out, but before you dash to safety, you stop to contemplate the sexual preferences of the guy laying down cover fire? Someone's gonna hafta explain this one to me.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
The Sad Tale of Oprah Winfrey and her farewell Victory Tour while millions of americans suffer foreclosure fraud.. Daily PUMA:
"...Has there ever been a television personality with the reputation and clout of Oprah Winfrey who has frittered away their final year in daytime programming by focusing on their own narcissistic journey, when the country and her audience needed her to protect them from predatory banking practices that have been surfacing at an alarming pace?
Oprah Winfrey could have used her television show to expose the dastardly deeds of her own business acquaintances, such as those of Jamie Dimon, but instead we are treated to a trail of Oprah's tears as guests tell her how much she has meant to them...meanwhile, TEN THOUSAND homes are foreclosed upon every day in the United States, and many of them are not being fairly treated..."
Monday, December 13, 2010
"Extending the tax rates, of course, garners near-universal acclaim. But Republicans view other parts of the deal, such as the temporary payroll-tax deduction, the $56 billion toward jobless benefits, and myriad Obama-favored tax credits, as hold-your-nose compromises.
For an example of the grumbling, see Sen. John McCain of Arizona, who wrote in a Twitter message Friday that he has 'serious concerns.' Nevertheless, he will support the agreement because 'Americans can't afford tax increases...'"
"Iran's nuclear program is still in chaos despite its leaders' adamant claim that they have contained the computer worm that attacked their facilities, cybersecurity experts in the United States and Europe say...
Sunday, December 12, 2010
"President Barack Obama should tell Democrats angered by his compromises with Republicans on extending tax cuts to “suck it up,” New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.
Obama “can’t just sit there and depend on ideology” because “leadership is about doing the possible, not sitting around and waiting for the perfect,” Bloomberg said in an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press...”
The Base has been sucking it up ever since Teh Precious became The One. Enuf.
Saturday, December 11, 2010
"...Sanders kicked off the debate on the bill with a two-hour stand in opposition to the tax cut deal before handing over the lectern to Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and then Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.).
'How can I get by on one house?' Sanders said. 'I need five houses, ten houses! I need three jet planes to take me all over the world! Sorry, American people. We've got the money, we've got the power, we've got the lobbyists here and on Wall Street. Tough luck. That's the world, get used to it. Rich get richer. Middle class shrinks...'"
"...Other public mourners included as many 150 supporters who gathered a few blocks away from the church for a counter-demonstration against a group of picketers from the controversial Westboro Baptist Church.
The Kansas-based congregation is known for its extremist opposition against homosexuals, Jews and other groups and regularly holds protests at funerals for fallen U.S. service members, saying the war's dead are God's punishment for the country tolerating gays and lesbians.
In the end, only five Westboro congregants showed for the protest, which took place in a cold, steady rain..."
Friday, December 10, 2010
The motion for cloture, or to begin debate, needed 60 votes to pass due to a Republican filibuster, but fell short at 57-42 in favor..."
"Failing to repeal the law prohibiting openly gay and lesbian people from serving in the military leaves the services vulnerable to the possibility the courts will order an immediate and likely chaotic end to the policy, Defense Secretary Robert Gates told reporters Friday.
Gates, speaking aboard an aircraft as he traveled in the Middle East, said that 'my greatest worry will be that we are at the mercy of the courts and all of the lack of predictability that that entails...'"
"In a case that could have widespread repercussions on how law enforcement agents deal with disasters, three former and current police officers were found guilty Thursday in the shooting death of a man and the coverup in the chaotic aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
A federal jury took three days to reach guilty verdicts on three of the five officers indicted in the shooting, burning and coverup of the death of 31-year-old Henry Glover..."
Thursday, December 09, 2010
"A church that pickets funerals to protest what it calls American immorality says its members will be picketing the service this Saturday for Elizabeth Edwards, who died of breast cancer on Tuesday.
Based in Topeka, Kan., the Westboro Baptist Church said it would be outside the Edenton Street United Methodist Church in Raleigh, N.C., during the funeral for the former wife of one-time vice presidential candidate John Edwards..."
Wednesday, December 08, 2010
"The 39 year-old Australian, who is wanted by Interpol over a charge of rape and sexual assault in Sweden, said there were some references to extraterrestrial life in yet-to-be-published confidential files obtained from the American government.
He did not disclose what information was contained in the diplomatic memos obtained by the whistleblowing website. It also remains unclear when they will be published..."
Tuesday, December 07, 2010
"...Tides chief executive and founder, Drummond Pike, has endorsed Media Matters' campaign.
'Every sponsor of every Fox show should be put on notice that this insanity is being underwritten by [advertisers],' Brock says. He adds: 'If Beck isn't stopped, I think we'll have another Oklahoma City [bombing] in this country...'"
And where are the deficit hawks?
Monday, December 06, 2010
Sen. Bernie Sanders: A Real Jaw Dropper at the Federal Reserve:
"...After years of stonewalling by the Fed, the American people are finally learning the incredible and jaw-dropping details of the Fed's multi-trillion-dollar bailout of Wall Street and corporate America. As a result of this disclosure, other members of Congress and I will be taking a very extensive look at all aspects of how the Federal Reserve functions and how we can make our financial institutions more responsive to the needs of ordinary Americans and small businesses.
What have we learned so far from the disclosure of more than 21,000 transactions? We have learned that the $700 billion Wall Street bailout signed into law by President George W. Bush turned out to be pocket change compared to the trillions and trillions of dollars in near-zero interest loans and other financial arrangements the Federal Reserve doled out to every major financial institution in this country. Among those are Goldman Sachs, which received nearly $600 billion; Morgan Stanley, which received nearly $2 trillion; Citigroup, which received $1.8 trillion; Bear Stearns, which received nearly $1 trillion, and Merrill Lynch, which received some $1.5 trillion in short term loans from the Fed.
We also learned that the Fed's multi-trillion bailout was not limited to Wall Street and big banks, but that some of the largest corporations in this country also received a very substantial bailout. Among those are General Electric, McDonald's, Caterpillar, Harley Davidson, Toyota and Verizon.
Perhaps most surprising is the huge sum that went to bail out foreign private banks and corporations including two European megabanks -- Deutsche Bank and Credit Suisse -- which were the largest beneficiaries of the Fed's purchase of mortgage-backed securities
Deutsche Bank, a German lender, sold the Fed more than $290 billion worth of mortgage securities. Credit Suisse, a Swiss bank, sold the Fed more than $287 billion in mortgage bonds...."
Sunday, December 05, 2010
Friday, December 03, 2010
"...This is just an idea I had, CNN, but maybe you all should consider this tactic: when an interviewee says something that gives you the WTF-face, you could maybe deviate from your scripted questions, pause and ask said interviewee, 'I'm sorry, but what did you mean when you said that thing you said, just a few seconds ago, on our teevee show?'
Obviously, the downside here is that you really steal away from your exclusive online post-game lamentation of the terrible interview you just conducted..."
Wednesday, December 01, 2010
"Couch potatoes of America, listen up. Congress may be just days away from turning down the volume on ear-splitting TV.
The Commercial Advertising Loudness Mitigation, or CALM, Act follows rules set last year by a United Nations body in Switzerland on how to measure and clip broadcast volumes. The U.S. bill, inspired by decades of consumer complaints, should finally ban TV ads that blare louder than the programs they interrupt..."
I wonder if the GOP will block this legislation.
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
FoxNews.com - Mystery Surrounds Cyber Missile That Crippled Iran's Nuclear Weapons Ambitions:
"In the 20th century, this would have been a job for James Bond.
The mission: Infiltrate the highly advanced, securely guarded enemy headquarters where scientists in the clutches of an evil master are secretly building a weapon that can destroy the world. Then render that weapon harmless and escape undetected.
But in the 21st century, Bond doesn't get the call. Instead, the job is handled by a suave and very sophisticated secret computer worm, a jumble of code called Stuxnet, which in the last year has not only crippled Iran's nuclear program but has caused a major rethinking of computer security around the globe..."
"President Obama is often blamed for not reaching out to Republicans. In truth, as Monday morning's announcement that Obama wants to cut the pay of all federal employees illustrates, he has the opposite problem. Obama frequently proposes essentially Republican policies, which makes it impossible for him to use those ideas to buy Republican votes for bipartisan legislation.
When legislation to limit greenhouse gas emissions was being negotiated in the Senate Obama undermined the bargaining process by simply unilaterally opening up new areas for offshore oil drilling. Increased drilling was supposed to be one of the things Democrats gave to Republicans in a comprehensive energy reform bill as an inducement to vote for it. Republicans hardly applauded Obama for the move, and the average swing voter seems not to have given the Democrats any credit for it in the recent election. In fact, the BP oil spill turned the drilling decision into a potential liability for Democrats..."
Monday, November 29, 2010
"...The wounds of conflict in Yeonpyeong are still too fresh to discuss a revival of negotiations. Some observers have pointed out that North Korea tends to do its worst when a new leader is set to assume power. In this case, Kim is reportedly preparing to turn over power to one of his sons, and a show of North Korean military might could give the succession an aura of strength.
South Korea’s defense minister resigned following the attack, and President Lee Myung-bak has vowed to make the North “pay the price” – but for future attacks. This could be seen as an indication that the South will be provoked into a full-scale war only with utmost reluctance. This is as it should be; Seoul deserves commendation for this difficult balancing act. The price of war is too steep and everyone stands to lose..."
The Real Threat to America - NYTimes.com:
"... I don’t doubt the patriotism of the Americans involved in keeping the country safe, nor do I discount the threat, but I am sure of this: The unfettered growth of the Department of Homeland Security and the T.S.A. represent a greater long-term threat to the prosperity, character and wellbeing of the United States than a few madmen in the valleys of Waziristan or the voids of Yemen.
America is a nation of openness, boldness and risk-taking. Close this nation, cow it, constrict it and you unravel its magic.
There are now about 400 full-body scanners, set to grow to 1,000 next year. One of the people pushing them most energetically is Michael Chertoff, the former Secretary of Homeland Security.
He’s the co-founder and managing principal of the Chertoff Group, which provides security advice. One of its clients is California-based Rapiscan Systems, part of the OSI Systems corporation, that makes many of the “whole body” scanners being installed...."
Sunday, November 28, 2010
"Republicans are relishing the coming of a new day on Capitol Hill. But across the country in California, the party of Nixon and Reagan is drifting toward obscurity.
The latest sign of imperiled health: In a year Republicans notched big victories in Congress, governor's offices and statehouses around the nation, California Democrats made a clean sweep of eight statewide contests on Nov. 2. Democrats padded their majority in the Legislature, where the party controls both chambers and no congressional seats changed parties..."
"The Republican senator who opposes ratification this year of a new nuclear arms treaty with Russia made clear Sunday that politics, not policy, is the main issue.
Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl told NBC's 'Meet the Press' program that the Senate won't have enough time in December's 'lame-duck' session to properly consider the so-called START Treaty with Russia..."
Saturday, November 27, 2010
"The Israelis are developing an airport security device that eliminates the privacy concerns that come with full-body scanners at the airports.
It’s a booth you can step into that will not X-ray you, but will detonate any explosive device you may have on you. They see this as a win-win for everyone, with none of this crap about racial profiling. It also would eliminate the costs of a long and expensive trial. Justice would be swift. Case closed!
You're in the airport terminal and you hear a muffled explosion. Shortly thereafter an announcement comes over the PA system:
'Attention standby passengers — we now have a seat available on flight number XXXX. Shalom!' "...
"You’ve heard of the Social Security crisis. And you’ve probably heard that the pensions promised to state employees are terribly underfunded. And maybe you’ve even heard that most Americans don’t have enough money in their 401(k)s.
Too often, these are three separate conversations. They shouldn’t be. We don’t just have a Social Security problem or a 401(k) problem. We have a retirement-security problem. And when we look at one or another piece in isolation—as most of the deficit-reduction proposals do—we run the risk of making it much worse. To be more specific, we run the risk of continuing the great risk shift of the last decades of the 20th century, in which uncertainty that was once borne by employers and the government has increasingly been shunted onto individuals..."
"South Korean protesters demanding a harder line against neighbouring North Korea have on Saturday scuffled with police outside the defence ministry in the capital, Seoul..."
I wonder if they still want the US to go home.
Friday, November 26, 2010
"...Some explanation: There’s a legal limit to federal debt, which must be raised periodically if the government keeps running deficits; the limit will be reached again this spring. And since nobody, not even the hawkiest of deficit hawks, thinks the budget can be balanced immediately, the debt limit must be raised to avoid a government shutdown. But Republicans will probably try to blackmail the president into policy concessions by, in effect, holding the government hostage; they’ve done it before.
Now, you might think that the prospect of this kind of standoff, which might deny many Americans essential services, wreak havoc in financial markets and undermine America’s role in the world, would worry all men of good will. But no, Mr. Simpson “can’t wait.” And he’s what passes, these days, for a reasonable Republican..."
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
"...Cabinet secretaries, top congressional leaders and an exclusive group of senior U.S. officials are exempt from toughened new airport screening procedures when they fly commercially with government-approved federal security details.
Aviation security officials would not name those who can skip the controversial screening, but other officials said those VIPs range from top officials like Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and FBI Director Robert Mueller to congressional leaders like incoming House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, who avoided security before a recent flight from Washington's Reagan National Airport..."
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Monday, November 22, 2010
"...A US Army Staff Sergeant, now serving in Afghanistan, points out that he is not allowed to do these invasive, Enhanced Pat-Downs on women and children while conducting searches of local nationals over in Afghanistan, even when involved with security tasks within his Infantry company. Something that would probably save lives.
To avoid offending the Afghan people. To avoid presenting the US government as oppressors. To avoid feeding the Taliban’s hatred. And yet, according to you Mr President these enhanced pat-downs are not only acceptable but necessary for the American traveling public..."
"The U.S. military launched what is billed as its largest-ever spy satellite on Sunday.
A Delta IV Heavy rocket blasted off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 5:58 p.m. on Sunday, carrying what an Air Force press release called a classified payload for the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO).
While the Air Force did not give further detail on the mission, Bruce Carlson, director of the NRO, said in a September 13 speech that his agency would be putting “the largest satellite in the world” aboard a Delta rocket for a launch from Cape Canaveral this fall..."
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Saturday, November 20, 2010
"After decades of fierce opposition to the use of all contraception, the pontiff will end the Church's absolute ban on the use of condoms.
He will say that it is acceptable to use a prophylactic when the sole intention is to 'reduce the risk of infection' from Aids..."
Friday, November 19, 2010
"...On Thursday, Congressman Ron Paul introduced legislation to counter what he called the 'calamity' of airport security. It proposes barring the government from doing what ordinary citizens would not be allowed to do to strangers – photographing them naked or touching their private parts.
'If we can't take nude photos of people why do we allow the government to do it? We would go to jail,' he said. 'Something has to be done. Everybody's fed up. The people are fed up. The pilots are fed up. I'm fed up. What we're putting up with at the airport is so symbolic of us just not standing up and saying enough is enough. I know the American people are starting to wake up but our government, those in charge, Congress, are doing nothing...'"
Thursday, November 18, 2010
"A WOMAN is suing over an incident where airport staff allegedly pulled down her top and joked about her breasts in public view.
The 23-year-old traveller, from Amarillo, US, is suing the US Government for the emotional distressed she says the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents caused..."
"An effort to continue assistance for millions of jobless people who will see their benefits run out in coming weeks failed in the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday.
By a vote of 258 to 154, the proposal to extend jobless benefits for three months fell short of the two-thirds margin needed to pass the House under special rules that limit debate..."
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Yeah, well, we'll see how long that lasts.
'...Dispatched in the Republican primary by Joe Miller, a protégé of Ms. Palin, Ms. Murkowski is on the verge of an historic upset, having emerged as the new vote leader after running a write-in campaign to keep her seat.
And she’s taking aim at her nemesis.
I just do not think that she has those leadership qualities, that intellectual curiosity that allows for building good and great policies,” Ms. Murkowski told Katie Couric during an interview on CBS. “You know, she was my governor for two years, for just about two years there, and I don’t think that she enjoyed governing...”'
Neither trait slowed George Bush down, much to our detriment.
Monday, November 15, 2010
Sunday, November 14, 2010
"...We pay twice as much for health care as the other industrialized nations. At some point we’re gonna have to consider not just WHAT we’re willing to pay for but also HOW MUCH we’re willing pay for EVERYTHING, including routine care.
We can’t control M&M costs without addressing the entire health care market. And the best way to do that is a little thing called “single-payer.” While medical professionals deserve to be well compensated, “for-profit” health care makes as much sense as “for-profit” police and fire departments..."
God help us, we do.
Saturday, November 13, 2010
"...On the other hand, giving the top 1 percent a two-year extension would cost the Treasury $130 billion over two years, thereby blowing a giant hole in efforts to get the deficit under control.
Alternatively, $130 billion would be enough to rehire every teacher, firefighter, and police officer laid off over the last two years and save the jobs of all of them now on the chopping block. Not only are these people critical to our security and the future of our children but, unlike the top 1 percent, they could be expected to spend all of their earnings and thereby stimulate the economy..."
"Defense Secretary Robert Gates is opening an investigation to determine who in the Defense Department leaked information to The Washington Post that showed a majority of the military would not object if the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy were lifted.
Gates is angry that two unnamed officials cited in the Post article have “selectively revealed aspects of the draft findings” of the Pentagon’s Working Group, according to a statement released late Friday afternoon by Pentagon press secretary Geoff Morrell..."
"While almost nothing went right for Democratic candidates this fall, one issue turned out to be a winner in some of the closest Senate races in the nation: abortion.
By branding Republican challengers as outside the cultural mainstream on the issue, Democrats managed to hold on to at least a slice of the political center by courting and winning over moderate women in a handful of key states..."
Friday, November 12, 2010
The Learning Channel don't do much teachin' no more. It's mostly gawking.
"President Obama said today his top priority is to extend the George W. Bush tax cuts for middle class Americans, and he will talk with Republicans next week about what to do with the tax rates for wealthier Americans.
'I continue to believe that extending permanently the upper-income tax cuts would be a mistake and that we can't afford it,' Obama told reporters at the G-20 summit in Seoul, South Korea. 'And my hope is, is that somewhere in between there we can find some sort of solution...'"
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
"...Among the controversial proposals, the plan in its current form would end or cap a wide range of breaks relied on by the middle class, including the deduction for home-mortgage interest. It would tax capital gains and dividends at the higher rates now levied on wage income. To compensate, one version of the plan would dramatically lower and simplify individual rates, to 9%, 15% and 24%.
For businesses, the plan would significantly lower the corporate tax rate—from a current top rate of 35% to as low as 26%—but also eliminate a number of deductions. It would make permanent the research and development tax credit. Overall, the plan would cut the federal deficit by $3.8 trillion by 2020..."
Tuesday, November 09, 2010
"British officials said today there was no evidence to support claims by George Bush, the former US president, that information extracted by 'waterboarding' saved British lives by foiling attacks on Heathrow airport and Canary Wharf. In his memoirs, Bush said the practice – condemned by Downing Street as torture – was used in CIA interrogations of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the alleged mastermind of the 9/11 attacks on the US..."
Monday, November 08, 2010
"...The book's excerpts and the interviews offer new insight into Bush's presidency, but show a familiar certainty and self-assuredness about the decisions he made.
On the decision to launch a war with Iraq, Bush expressed no hesitation when asked if he would make the same choice again, knowing all that he knows today..."
"...It’s true that things aren’t as bad as they were during the worst of the Depression. But that’s not saying much. And as in the 1930s, every proposal to do something to improve the situation is met with a firestorm of opposition and criticism. As a result, by the time the actual policy emerges, it’s watered down to such an extent that it’s almost guaranteed to fail.
We’ve already seen this happen with fiscal policy: fearing opposition in Congress, the Obama administration offered an inadequate plan, only to see the plan weakened further in the Senate. In the end, the small rise in federal spending was effectively offset by cuts at the state and local level, so that there was no real stimulus to the economy.
Now the same thing is happening to monetary policy..."
Sunday, November 07, 2010
"The Republican in line to lead the House Budget Committee acknowledged Sunday that the GOP is unlikely to get a repeal of a Democratic-backed health care law because President Obama can veto it, but said House Republicans will move forward on a vote anyway.
Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin said Republicans have some opportunities to slow the advance of the Democratic plan by defunding actual rollouts, but acknowledged the president would have to sign that legislation..."
Saturday, November 06, 2010
"...Olbermann was suspended without pay Friday for making donations to three Democratic candidates in this week's mid-term elections..."
Friday, November 05, 2010
"...She also lit into those quoted, telling Greta Van Susteren they "want to lead the nation and run the world" and yet "they're not brave enough to put their name in an article." She called them "the GOP the establishment -- the self-proclaimed elite" and added that "if they would man up and if they would, you know, make these claims against me, then I can debate them."
UPDATE: Palin has now sarcastically referred to Politico and other detractors "puppy-kicking, chain-smoking porn producers" in an email to the Daily Caller..."
"...The United States is at the bottom of the barrel. We don't live well. Since the 1970s, the bottom 90 percent has experienced income stagnation, while the top 1 percent has seen its wealth skyrocket. In America, two-thirds of income gains in recent years went to the top 1 percent. The gap between rich and poor hasn't been so great since 1928, right before the first Great Depression, with the top 20 percent controlling 84 percent of the wealth. In Sweden, the top 20 percent owns 36 percent. Canada and Western Europe all have greater social mobility than the so-called 'land of opportunity,' and with far more generous benefits, over a month of vacation, real universal health care -- you get the picture. If the citizens of all of these advanced nations are living better than Americans, then what is so special about America?
And yet, this recent election is a testament to this country's proclivity -- with help from the bottom 90 percent -- to keep things the way they are, if not worsen them. Some people vote with the oligarchy against their own interests because they simply lack the proper information. There's lots of blame to go around..."
..."Bush: 'Yes. My record was strong, I felt, when it came to race relations and giving people a chance. And it was a disgusting moment.'
Lauer: 'I wonder if some people are going to read that, now that you've written it, and they might give you some heat for that. And the reason is this '
Bush [interrupting]: 'Don't care.'
Lauer: 'Well, here's the reason. You're not saying that the worst moment in your presidency was watching the misery in Louisiana. You're saying it was when someone insulted you because of that.'
Bush: 'No, and I also make it clear that the misery in Louisiana affected me deeply as well. There's a lot of tough moments in the book. And it was a disgusting moment, pure and simple...'"
This exchange speaks volumes about Skippy.
Thursday, November 04, 2010
"...I don’t care how the party gets Obama not to run in 2012. They can persuade him to give it up voluntarily like LBJ did, or they can start secretly funding Hillary for a primary win. But something has to be done to get him out of the White House and put a strong contender in his place.
The creative class will take us all down unless we strike back and tell them in no uncertain terms that we are not putting up with their $#@% anymore. Tuesday was the first blow. And we will continue to pound on them until they get the message. No candidate that has their support will ever have mine unless he/she embraces the working class. I don’t see that happening. So, the party is at a stalemate. The vast majority of us are held hostage by a tiny group of snobs who think very well of themselves and not of you.
So be it. The Democrats will be the Washington Generals to the Republican Globe Trotters until a new team comes along..."
"...The Reid campaign waited until the day after the primary to pounce, releasing a press release that told voters Ms. Angle had a 'radical' notion to do away with Social Security.
Ms. Angle had in fact spoken frequently of 'phasing out' social security. During the general election campaign she sought to moderate that position, explaining that she wanted to 'save' the popular program by amending it, but Mr. Reid continued efforts to remind voters even as late as Tuesday afternoon of her earlier position.
While Ms. Angle seemed to have all the momentum in an election year that favored tea party fervor and the Republican party, her missteps became too numerous to overcome. Eventually, Ms. Angle's campaign couldn't risk putting her in front of television cameras for fear that she might say something damaging..."
Wednesday, November 03, 2010
Tuesday, November 02, 2010
"...If O'Donnell, Johnson and their Tea'd-Off compatriots were even minimally serious about adhering to the founding document, they would all be thoughtful critics of the undeclared wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, ardent foes of the Patriot Act and steady opponents of free trade deals that remove the authority of Congress to represent and serve the interests of American workers, farmers and communities. But then they would be Russ Feingold, and it goes against the Tea Party narrative—at least as it has been framed by the movement's corporate paymasters and messaging consultants—to regard a progressive Democrat as the most ardent defender of the American experiment.
So it should be understood that O'Donnell, Miller, Angle, Buck, Johnson and the rest of the Tea Partisans who might be senators are not talking about the Constitution as it was written or as the founders intended it. Rather, they are talking about the Constitution as they would like to see it rewritten and reinterpreted—with the help of the most activist Supreme Court in American history. While their intents are radical, their prospects must be seen in light of the fact that Chief Justice John Roberts and his conservative majority have already reinterpreted the First Amendment's free speech protection in a manner that extends the natural rights that the founders reserved for human beings to multinational corporations..."
Monday, November 01, 2010
"Alcohol is more dangerous than illegal drugs like heroin and crack cocaine, according to a new study.
British experts evaluated substances including alcohol, cocaine, heroin, ecstasy and marijuana, ranking them based on how destructive they are to the individual who takes them and to society as a whole..."
"The chairman of the Republican Governors Association said that while he expects big wins for his party on Election Day, he understands it is not because voters love the GOP more than the Democrats.
Appearing on CBS' 'The Early Show' this morning, Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour said that tomorrow's voting represents a referendum on the policies of President Obama..."
Sunday, October 31, 2010
"Assisted by a colorful cast of characters, Comedy Central funnymen Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert held a raucous rally on the National Mall Saturday in typical fashion before a cheering throng of supporters.
Amidst all the hilarity, however, the 'Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear' carried a message about Americans turning their backs on hate and working together to make the world a better place..."