Monday, December 31, 2012

The Other School Shoe

The NRA’s faulty school-security proposal - The Washington Post
...A greater police presence in schools can also increase student offending rates. Research has repeatedly shown that schools can prevent student misbehavior by establishing positive social climates. Students do better when they feel respected and listened to, like a valued part of the school, and when they view school regulations and actions, including security, as fair. Introducing more police into schools can undo these efforts, making what had been an encouraging learning environment, where students are partners in an educational effort, into more of a place where students are subjects of school rules...

Spy Cuts

Congress trims US spy budget in deepest cuts since 9/11, drops anti-leak measures | Fox News
Congress has drastically trimmed the budget for U.S. spies and satellites for 2013, though not quite as deeply as the White House wanted.

In one of the last votes of the year, House lawmakers voted Monday 373-29 in favor of a Senate-passed bill to slightly boost the president's $72 billion budget request for intelligence agencies including the CIA, adding extra cash for the counterterrorism fight against al-Qaida, and the counterintelligence fight against foreign governments trying to spy on the U.S...

I'm With Tom

Senator Harkin “No deal is better than a bad deal” | FDL News Desk
Senator Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) just left the floor of the Senate after saying he would rather go over the “fiscal cliff” than make the Bush tax cuts permanent...

Foul Bunch Back'd Toad Found?

Watch Dogs Whistled Down

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Fruity Graham Threatens America

Lindsay Graham: I Will Destroy America's Solvency Unless The Social Security Retirement Age Is Raised | ThinkProgress
...This is extortion, plain and simple. It is the budgetary equivalent of threatening to break America’s legs unless Congress agrees to break the backs of millions poised on the edge of retirement. Graham’s position is that seniors should have to wait longer for their retirement benefits — even if they work in physically demanding jobs that literally tear the body apart by the time a worker reaches age 65 — and that those benefits should be reduced in the future.

And if Congress won’t agree to this deal, then Graham is prepared to thrust the nation into an economic calamity unheard of since the Great Depression.

O'Gun Control

Obama makes passing gun control measures a priority for 2013 | Fox News
President Obama pledged Sunday to make gun control a top priority in his second term and vowed to put his “full weight” behind such legislation.

“I’d like to get it done in the first year,” the president said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “This is not something that I will be putting off...”

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Mental Health,The Lack Thereof

Guns and Mental Illness - NYTimes.com
...The state and federal rules around mental illness are built upon a delusion: that the sickest among us should always be in control of their own treatment, and that deinstitutionalization is the more humane route. That is not always the case. Torrey told me that Connecticut’s laws are so restrictive in terms of the proof required to get someone committed that Adam Lanza’s mother would probably not have been able to get him help even if she had tried...

Everyone's Wrongs

Friday, December 28, 2012

Death Of A Hollywood Liberal

Daily Politics Blog - Charles P. Pierce - Political Blogging - Esquire
The first wave onto Omaha Beach. The Bulge. Malmedy. I don't think I want to hear about Hollywood liberals again for a while. Godspeed, Pappy...

...Speaking on the death of Charles During.

GOPer Doing Good

Murkowski crosses aisle to rein in Super PACs influence | The Middle Ground | Scoop.it
U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, is teaming with Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., to clean up the indulgent and secretive excesses of so-called political Super PACs. She's pledged to take on the project early in the 113th Congress, and co-authored with Wyden an opinion piece on the subject published in the Washington Post...

The Daily Flashback: Raygun On SS


Gifts From The Deep

Cliff's A Bore

New Tab
Earth to DC pundits: we’re sick of the “fiscal cliff” crap « The Confluence
...Anyway, the anecdotal evidence suggests that the urgency of the fiscal cliff is not resonating here. People are bored with it. It’s not like Iraq where the Bushies scared everyone into thinking Saddam Hussein had WMDs that he could drop on us in 40 minutes. No, it’s like they really want mute the next TV pundit who is hyperventilating about his taxes going up in January...

Timing Death

Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Old General Dies

AP source: Retired Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf dies - Yahoo! News
Retired Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf, who topped an illustrious military career by commanding the U.S.-led international coalition that drove Saddam Hussein's forces out of Kuwait in 1991 but kept a low public profile in controversies over the second Gulf War against Iraq, died Thursday. He was 78...

GOP Gets The Blame

Republicans rejecting Republican ideas major cause of Washington dysfunction
It is easy to throw all politicians in the same boat when describing the gridlock and dysfunction that is afflicting Washington today. The simple fact is that it isn’t so. Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein wrote about it in their book “It’s Even Worse Than It Looks: How the American Constitutional System Collided With the New Politics of Extremism” that details Republican intransigence. MSNBC’s Chuck Todd had a very good interview with them, where they surprisingly got the opportunity to lay out the fact that over the last few years Republicans have been the most responsible for the chaos in Washington...

Another Econ Analysis

Capital Wins, Labor Loses, But Andrew Smithers Says It Can't Go On | The Business Desk with Paul Solman | PBS NewsHour | PBS
...ANDREW SMITHERS: The standard assumption of most Keynesian and monetary economists is that the current imbalance in the economy which results in the large cash flow surplus of the corporate sector is cyclical and will change when entrepreneurs recover their animal spirits, either naturally or because there is so much money around. The data suggest otherwise. They point to the current imbalance being structural, not cyclical, and needing a structural change in management remuneration contracts for it to change.

As the problem is unlikely to be solved quickly it poses two risks to the economy. The first is that premature fiscal tightening will push the economy back into recession. The second is that too much delay will cause people to expect inflation to rise and this will probably cause actual inflation to pick up.

Unfortunately this matter is seldom if ever discussed and I hope your efforts will help to change this. I cannot see much hope of changing policy to address this complex problem unless it is first widely discussed.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

SS Pays Too Much!

Some people apparently do need a Second Amendment solution.
Ruth Marcus Is Outraged by Overly Generous Social Security Checks | MyFDL
Well, who can blame her? After all, we have tens of millions of seniors living high on Social Security checks averaging a bit over $1,200 a monthat a time when folks like the CEOs in the Campaign to Fix the Debt are supposed to subsist on paychecks that typically come to $10 million to $20 million a year...

That Being GOPer Problem

Send in the Clowns - NYTimes.com
WHEN thinking about the state of the Republican Party, I defer to a point that the Democratic consultant James Carville made the other day: “When I hear people talking about the troubled state of today’s Republican Party, it calls to mind something Lester Maddox said one time back when he was governor of Georgia. He said the problem with Georgia prisons was ‘the quality of the inmates.’ The problem with the Republican Party is the quality of the people who vote in their primaries and caucuses. Everybody says they need a better candidate, or they need a better message but — in my opinion — the Republicans have an inmate problem.” The political obsessions of the Republican base — from denying global warming to defending assault weapons to opposing any tax increases under any conditions, to resisting any immigration reform — are making it impossible to be a Republican moderate, said Carville. And without more Republican moderates, there is no way to strike the kind of centrist bargains that have been at the heart of American progress — that got us where we are and are essential for where we need to go...

Boehner Wants Action

US House Speaker Boehner urges Senate to act on 'fiscal cliff' | Reuters
U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner on Wednesday urged the Senate to pass its version of legislation to avert the "fiscal cliff," in a sign that congressional efforts to avoid a budget crisis are coming back to life days ahead of the year-end deadline...

Of course, what he means by action is caving to every GOP demand.

Monday, December 24, 2012

What Paul Said

Ron Paul rips NRA plan for officers in every school | Fox News
Retiring Republican Rep. Ron Paul pushed back Monday against the National Rifle Association's call for installing armed officers in every school, warning that the move could create a TSA-style maze of checkpoints and surveillance cameras -- with limited effect.

"School shootings, no matter how horrific, do not justify creating an Orwellian surveillance state in America," Paul said in a written statement...

The (Gun) Beat Goes On

VIDEO: NRA's LaPierre Says No To Ban On Large Capacity Magazines : The Two-Way : NPR
One of the sharpest exchanges during his more than 20-minute long appearance Sunday on NBC's Meet the Press came when National Rifle Association CEO and Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre was asked why it wouldn't make sense to ban high capacity magazines for guns such as the one used to kill 20 school children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

Essentially, he said that gunman Adam Lanza would have found some other way to try to kill so many people. We've created a clip that focuses just on that exchange with host David Gregory...

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Rant Of The Week:Sullivan

Comment Of The Day: Gun Nut Edition

So You Think You Know the Second Amendment? : The New Yorker
"Rifles, after all, are for stopping an unchecked and tyrannical government. So, why do you want to ban them?" Look to Australia. In the 18 years before the Port Arthur killing of 35 people we had 13 massacres (defined as 4 or more dead). We then banned high-powered rifles and institued a massive rifle buy-back scheme. In the last 16 years there has been NO massacres. Not one. "The banning of gun ownership will not stop pyscho's from killing." In Australia - yes it did. In a country very very much like your own - but without the guns. Our deaths from firearms (all deaths, not just massacres) has halved. That is why you should ban high powered rifles. God bless America, but God help your children if you don't act now.

Elections Have Consequences: Blind GOPer Edition

Tax fight sends GOP into chaos - The Washington Post
...“The hard-core anti-tax conservatives in the GOP seem to believe that Barack Obama will be blamed if there is no agreement reached to avoid sequestration and the tax increases that are coming,” said Sheldon D. Pollack, a University of Delaware law and political science professor who has written a history of Republican anti-tax policy. “Calculated gamble? Or are they simply incapable of recognizing that they do not control the White House or the Senate, and hence do not have the ability to control the agenda? Sadly, I think it is the latter.”

Their intransigence alone is unlikely to sell the electorate on the Republican point of view on taxes...

O'vantage

In 'fiscal cliff' fight, Obama gets better marks than Boehner - CSMonitor.com

If you picture the “fiscal cliff” struggle between the Democratic White House and the Republican House of Representatives as hand-to-hand political combat between the President and Speaker John Boehner, you’d have to score it as advantage Obama by a wide margin...

Friday, December 21, 2012

The Emerging Majority

Gingrich: GOP faces 'bleak future' without a major political overhaul - The Hill's Ballot Box
Democrats could emerge as a near-permanent majority in poltics if the GOP doesn't undertake a major overhaul, former Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) said in a Friday letter to Republican National Committee members...

Obama Takes GOPer Bait

BBC News - John Kerry nominated as next US secretary of state
US President Barack Obama has nominated Senator John Kerry to succeed Hillary Clinton as his next secretary of state...

Self-Serving NRA

NRA Calls for Armed Officers in Schools - WSJ.com
The nation's most powerful gun-rights lobby called Friday for armed security guards in schools, saying that children had been left vulnerable in their classrooms...

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Fox Brainwashing

Mosque arsonist tells court: ‘I only know what I hear on Fox News’ | The Raw Story
An Indiana man convicted of setting fire to a mosque in Ohio told a judge on Wednesday that he committed the crimes because Fox News and conservative talk radio had convinced him that “most Muslims are terrorists.”

Randolph Linn, 52, accepted a plea deal in which he pled guilty to all charges in connection to setting a fire in the prayer room at the Islamic Center of Greater Toledo on Sept. 30. Under the deal, Linn is expected to serve 20 years in prison instead of 40...

Out Sick

I've been out of the loop this week due to illness. Hope I'm getting back to normal.

Monday, December 17, 2012

No Courage On Guns

Do We Have the Courage to Stop This? - NYTimes.com
IN the harrowing aftermath of the school shooting in Connecticut, one thought wells in my mind: Why can’t we regulate guns as seriously as we do cars?
Damon Winter/The New York Times

The fundamental reason kids are dying in massacres like this one is not that we have lunatics or criminals — all countries have them — but that we suffer from a political failure to regulate guns...

The NRA And The GOPers

Newtown's martyred children and the cold hearts of the gun lobby - latimes.com
...Even as the children of Newtown are laid to rest, the leaders of the NRA will not soften their absolutist stance for unfettered access to all types of firearms and, as a result, neither will the majority of Republicans in Congress who are in their thrall. Chances are slim-to-none that the Republican-controlled House of Representatives will take rational steps toward managing the millions of guns in America, such as banning assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition clips, as well as requiring background checks for all gun sales. Gun policy in the United States will continue to be dictated by extremists whose paranoid fear of black U.N. helicopters and the federal government far exceeds their concern about the shooting deaths of school kids or moviegoers or Christmas shoppers at a mall...

Sunday, December 16, 2012

About That Too Big To Indict

If You Liked Too Big To Fail, You Will Love Too Big To Indict
Did you know that there is now such a thing as “too big to indict”? This generally refers to institutions that are so big and so central to the entire economy of the whole world that there is nothing anyone can do to punish criminal activity and specifically refers to HSBC, a multinational banking conglomerate that laundered money for Mexican drug cartels and conducted business on behalf Iran and Sudan in spite of international sanctions. My, that sounds fun!...

Banning Assault Weapons

Dianne Feinstein To Introduce Assault Weapons Ban On First Day Of Congress
In the wake of Friday's mass killing at an elementary school in Connecticut, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said Sunday that she plans to introduce an assault weapons ban bill on the first day of the new Congress.

"I'm going to introduce in the Senate, and the same bill will be introduced in the House -- a bill to ban assault weapons," Feinstein said on NBC's "Meet the Press..."

No Surprises Here

Saturday, December 15, 2012

The Questions The GOPers Ask

My bold in the following.

Top 10 questions Republicans need to ask - Conservative News
...2. How to better deliver a conservative message of individual liberty?

Let’s face it: Mitt Romney and his surrogates failed to articulate a clear, conservative message that was persuasive enough to counter Obama’s Santa Claus strategy. After four more years of Obama’s presidency, the failure of liberalism will be on full display, but still conservatives will have to find a better way to explain the virtues of small government and free markets...

Well, duh, how about actually allowing for some individual liberty? You know, like allowing women control over their own body parts. Or, you know, allowing people to do what they want in their bedrooms, or smoke what they want, or, oh, the list is endless and so is their close-minded hypocrisy.

Not The Bloodiest

I posted this snippet after Columbine and here it is, yet again.
Bath School disaster - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Bath School disaster is the name given to three bombings in Bath Township, Michigan, on May 18, 1927, which killed 38 elementary school children, two teachers, four other adults and the bomber himself; at least 58 people were injured. Most of the victims were children in the second to sixth grades (7–11 years of age[1]) attending the Bath Consolidated School. Their deaths constitute the deadliest mass murder in a school in U.S. history and the third-deadliest non-military massacre in U.S. history, behind 9/11 and the Oklahoma City bombing...

The Other Lie Of The Year

Update: One of the top political lies of the year was the whopper about Obama’s “apology tour” - McPherson, KS - McPhersonSentinel - McPherson, KS
Yesterday, I told you HERE that Mitt Romney has won PolitiFact’s Lie of the Year award for his bogus rhetoric about Jeep moving its U.S. production operations to China.

I failed to note, however, that PolitiFact’s list of 10 finalists for the top award included THIS OTHER WHOPPER from Romney:...

O To Name Kerry?

...and play into the hands of the GOP?

Obama will name John Kerry to replace Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State: news report  - NY Daily News
President Obama has chosen Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) to succeed Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, according to a report.

Obama will announce his choice of Kerry in the coming weeks, the Chicago Sun-Times reported, citing a source.

The White House has not confirmed the selection...

Friday, December 14, 2012

O's Gas Prices

I do recall something about gas being $5 a gallon if the Kenyan Usurper Lightbringer got back in  the White House. Consumers get break on lower gas prices - Dec. 14, 2012

World Leader In Pervert Searches

Evil Apple: Maps Edition

Overwrought Movieism

Another Legitimate Raper

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Lying Liars GOPers Unexposed

Dan Froomkin: How the Mainstream Press Bungled the Single Biggest Story of the 2012 Campaign
..."I can't recall a campaign where I've seen more lying going on -- and it wasn't symmetric," said Ornstein, a scholar at the conservative American Enterprise Institute who's been tracking Congress with Mann since 1978. Democrats were hardly innocent, he said, "but it seemed pretty clear to me that the Republican campaign was just far more over the top."

Lies from Republicans generally and standardbearer Mitt Romney in particular weren't limited to the occasional TV ads, either; the party's most central campaign principles -- that federal spending doesn't create jobs, that reducing taxes on the rich could create jobs and lower the deficit -- willfully disregarded the truth.

"It's the great unreported big story of American politics," Ornstein said...

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Screech Harpy Talks Latinos

Republicans looking to reach out to Latinos may want to avoid the advice of Ann Coulter.

The conservative pundit penned a column Wednesday in which she lashed out at the “deluge of unskilled immigrants pouring into the country” and portrayed Latinos as a lazy “underclass” looking for a government handout. Coulter titles the piece “America Nears El Tipping Pointo,” presumably to make a virtue of her ignorance of the Spanish language...

GOPers On Wingnut Welfare

Columnist Sees GOP in Drunken Stupor - The Daily Beast
“The Republican Party is sort of like a drunk that needs to hit rock bottom,” he tells me in a video interview.

A columnist for the Daily Caller and The Week, Lewis agrees with Joe Scarborough and Bill Kristol that there is a conservative “racket,” which includes “the same old guys” who keep getting hired as political consultants...

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Insulting O

Cathie Adams, Former Texas GOP Chair: Obama Needs Teleprompter Because He 'Fried' Brain On Drugs
Cathie Adams, former Texas GOP chair and current Texas Eagle Forum president, gave a pre-election address earlier this year, claiming that a "Marxist" President Barack Obama had "fried his brain on drugs..."

The Tolkien Pols

Pierce sums the parties up nicely here:

Obama Comedians and Parody - Obama Derangement Syndrome Personified - Esquire
...When I find my vorpal sword, I'm right there with you. The problem with Republicans is that they have bloodthirsty Orcs. The problem with Democrats is that we have angry elves.

Union Rallying

Michigan union supporters to protest in record numbers - CBS News
Protesters are expected to turn out in droves at Michigan's state capitol on Tuesday, to continue their spirited defense of one of the biggest union strongholds in the U.S.

The protests are in responce to Michigan's proposed right-to-work legislation, which would make it illegal to force workers to join unions or pay dues. Republican lawmakers in Michigan broadly support the measure, and pushed it through last week without any debate, sparking widespread outrage...

Monday, December 10, 2012

Hunger Is Hard

GOPer Navel Gazing

Election 2012: Republican National Committee To Look Into What Went Wrong
The Republican National Committee on Monday announced an inquiry to look at what went wrong in 2012's presidential election and how the GOP can respond to the nation's shifting demographics and adopt smarter political strategies...

Sunday, December 09, 2012

Hillary Leading

Hillary Clinton for president in 2016? - CBS News
Hillary Clinton would be a nearly invincible force, Democrats and Republicans agreed today, should the Secretary of State validate rampant speculation that she will mount a second presidential run when she steps down from her administration post early next year.

It would be "virtually impossible" for Clinton, who tallied a 75 percent approval rating in a Siena poll last week, to lose the Democratic nomination if she sought it, former House Speaker and 2012 GOP candidate Newt Gingrich said on NBC's "Meet the Press." And the Republican Party in its currently hashed state, he added, would be "incapable" of competing against her in the general election...

Rice Is Noise

The Susan Rice Fight Is Really About Making Obama Look Bad - Susan Milligan (usnews.com)
There is a clear bias in the media, but it's not the partisan bent newspapers and TV stations are often accused of having. It's a bias toward conflict and tension. Thoughtful people are not often asked to be on cable news and magazine shows. Screamers get air time. Dick Morris, a political consultant whose prognoses on the presidential election were laughably off-base, continues to pen a column in a Capitol Hill daily and appear on TV. The media often appears to have given up on telling people what's going on—they're too busy trying to tell everyone, in the loudest terms, how people feel about what's going on.

So perhaps Senate and House Republicans are not entirely to blame for the misguided attack on Susan Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and reportedly a contender to be the next secretary of state...

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Evil Apple: Liver Edition

Memphis: Where Steve Jobs Goes To Eat His Fellow Americans - By Tal Sutsa - The eXiled
...But, that seems to be the only prideful action anywhere here or in the rest of the States from what I can tell. The sickly Jobs owned that house long enough for him to become a Tennessee resident where the waiting list for a liver transplant is 48 days compared to over 300 on average in the rest of the country. He needed that liver, and he needed it now; and there just aren’t enough organs available in the promised land of California where he made his billions. He had to cross over into the land of the desperate, delusional and impoverished – the South, a land so poor that it now gets manufacturing jobs that used to be outsourced to Mexico and the Pacific rim of Asia...

Defusing The Austerity Bomb

It's Official: Austerity Economics Doesn't Work : The New Yorker
With all the theatrics going on in Washington, you might well have missed the most important political and economic news of the week: an official confirmation from the United Kingdom that austerity policies don’t work...

The Never Option

There is no chance in Hell this would happen-- Obama, as we all know, is totally lacking in political courage, and dropping the war would take a modicum of backbone.

Obama's other option on pot: Legalize it for everyone? - CSMonitor.com
With half or more Americans now favoring legalizing marijuana, President Obama has one bold option that few experts are talking about: Raising the white flag and ending the federal war on pot...

Crist Goes Dem

Ex-Fla. Gov. Crist tweets he's joining Democrats - Houston Chronicle
Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, who was elected the state's chief executive as a Republican and then ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. Senate as an independent, announced on Twitter on Friday night that he's switching to the Democratic Party...

Friday, December 07, 2012

Colbert Hopes Dashed

SC Gov. Haley shuts door on Colbert for US Senate - Yahoo! News
South Carolina's governor appears to have closed the door on appointing Stephen Colbert to the U.S. Senate, all because the comedian didn't know the state drink was milk.

During "The Colbert Report" on Thursday, Colbert urged his fans to send Gov. Nikki Haley messages on Twitter with the hashtag "SenatorColbert" telling her why he would make a great senator from his home state. Haley is appointing a senator after Jim DeMint announced he is resigning at the end of the year...

The Cliff Is Coming-- Hooray!

Obama Won't Play That Way, Fiscal Cliff Edition - Garance Franke-Ruta - The Atlantic
Goodbye, conciliator. Hello, Mr. Tough Love.

If Republicans are unwilling to compromise on allowing the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy to expire, America is going to go over the fiscal cliff at the end of the year. Whether out of firm belief or firm belief in saying it as a negotiating strategy, President Obama has made it abundantly clear that this is one area where he will not budge...

More Cliff Talk

About That Pot War

Mr President, Don't Even Think About It - The Dish | By Andrew Sullivan - The Daily Beast
...The War on Drugs is the problem.

And the federal War on Marijuana is racist in its enforcement, ridiculous as a matter of science, outrageous in terms of personal liberty, and inimical to federalism. What we want - indeed demand - is the beginning of a review of whether the science justifies in any way the classification of cannabis as a Schedule One substance under federal law - making it as dangerous as heroin or cocaine. This didn't make any sense in 1970 when it took force; it makes even less sense today. Here is what defines a Schedule 1 substance:...

Legitimate Raper Aid

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Evil Wally In The World

Mitch Mauled

Ashley Judd is watching...

Debt Ceiling Bluff Called By Harry Reid, Leaving Mitch McConnell To Filibuster Himself
A move to embarrass Democrats backfired on Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell Thursday as the Kentucky Republican proposed a vote on raising the nation's debt ceiling -- then filibustered it when the Democrats tried to take him up on the offer...

Kicking A Man While He's Down

Michigan Republicans confront unions over right-to-work | Reuters
Michigan Republicans on Thursday announced a drive to make the home of the U.S. auto industry the 24th "right to work" state banning mandatory union dues, setting off a confrontation with organized labor that immediately led to arrests of protesters...

Wingnut Loosening

Jim DeMint to Leave Senate to Run Heritage Foundation - NYTimes.com
Senator Jim DeMint, the conservative Republican from South Carolina who helped incite the Tea Party movement, will leave the Senate to become president of the Heritage Foundation, a conservative research group...

Another Modest (Fiscal) Proposal

A Worthwhile Tax and Spending Proposal : The New Yorker
...Finally, the plan is a model of progressivity. There would be five income tax rates: fifteen per cent on income up to $100,000; twenty-one per cent between $100,000 and $150,000; twenty-five per cent from $150,000-$200,000; thirty-five per cent from $200,000 to $422,000; and 39.6 per cent for all income above $422,000. The bottom rates would be higher than the current levels, but so would the income thresholds. Most people earning less than $100,000 a year would end up gaining slightly relative to current policy, especially if they were eligible for the expanded earned-income tax credit. People earning between $100,000 and $250,000 a year would face a very small tax increase—on the order of 0.3 per cent. The biggest losers would be those earning more than $500,000 a year, who would have to pay about three per cent more in taxes, on average, and those earning more than a million dollars a year, who would pay about five per cent more

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Judd Rattles Nuts

Run, Judd, run. We need more intelligent people in Congress and she is certainly one of them.

Rand Paul: Ashley Judd ‘way too damn liberal for our country’ | The Raw Story
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) on Wednesday reacted to a possible Senate run by Ashley Judd by saying that the actress was so “damn liberal” that she did not even belong in the United States...

Saving O'Bucks

'Obamacare' saves consumers nearly $1.5 billion - latimes.com
Consumers saved nearly $1.5 billion in 2011 as a result of rules in President Obama's healthcare law that limit what insurance companies can spend on expenses unrelated to medical care, including profit, a new analysis shows...

It's Still Not One World

'Men don't have to worry about being caught': Sex mobs target Egypt's women - World News
Walaa Al Momtaz doesn’t leave her home for up to five days at a time. The neatly veiled 22-year-old misses her friends at City University, where she studies English and German, but what she faces upon leaving her house defeats her...

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Pot Hits High

Pot Legalization Support At Record High, Poll Finds
National support for legalizing marijuana is at a record high, according to a poll sponsored by the pro-legalization Marijuana Policy Project.

Fifty-eight percent of voters said the use of marijuana should be made legal, while 39 percent said it should be illegal, the poll, conducted by the Democratic firm PPP, found...

Comment Of The Day: UnVoodoo Economics Edition

the daily howler: The Babel of the Times op-ed page!
urban legendDecember 4, 2012 2:09 PM

Of course, it doesn't occur to any of these idiots, including Brooks, that so-called "entitlement reform" means cutting the purchasing power of a huge portion of the middle class and weakening its safety net. That means reducing aggregate demand in a time when demand still has not recovered to a sufficient level to bring full employment. It's about as anti-growth and anti-business as you can get.

It's time for progressives to make the bigger point: if you are in favor of measures to increase the purchasing power of the vast majority of Americans, and therefore, increase demand for the goods and services provided by American businesses, you are pro-business. If you favor steps that would decrease demand by decreasing the purchasing power of the vast majority of Americans, like cutting Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid benefits, you are anti-business.

Reid Still Pushing Reform

Harry Reid: Filibuster Changes Will Take Place In January
Keeping with his post-election pledge to reform the filibuster, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Tuesday proffered that changes to the rules of the upper chamber will be made, leaving it up to Republicans if they would like to participate.

"There are discussions going on now [over filibuster reform], but I want to tell everybody here. I'm happy I've had a number of Republicans come to me, a few Democrats,” Reid told reporters Tuesday at his weekly press availability. “We're going to change the rules. We cannot continue in this way. I hope we can get something that the Republicans will work with us on...”

Stolen Voting To Continue

Dems Hanging Tough

... so far.

Boehner faces conservative backlash over tax proposal, even as Dems resist offer | Fox News
Still, despite taking heat from his own rank-and-file, Boehner's plan was rejected outright by the White House. President Obama, in an interview Tuesday with Bloomberg, called the plan "out of balance" and stressed that any deal to avert the looming fiscal crisis must include an increase in tax rates for top earners.

"Rates are going up, they have to go up," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney echoed. In a taunt to Republicans, he panned their offer as "magic beans and fairy dust."

Monday, December 03, 2012

Comment Of The Day: Entitlement Edition

The Big Budget Mumble - NYTimes.com
JBCassandra
New York City

NYT Pick

This kind of thinking just fills me with anger. Are you one those who thinks that entitlement means free gift? It does not. I'm entitled to my Social Secuirity and whatever other benefits come from that agency because I've earned them. I've been paying into the system for over 50 years, and I'm not letting any arrogant, overprivileged chart-readers take away anything that I'm -- yes, I'll say it -- entitled to. I've seen with dismay the retirement age pushed forward a year, probably by young policy makers who think work is going to be fun forever and that they themselves will never be aging. You try working a full week when you're nearing 70 -- see how far you get, and how much fun it is then.

Why don't they just admit it: Republicans are picking on Social Security and Medicare because they think its recipients won't fight back. That would be a wrong way of thinking. I belong to a demographic that has experience of life, knows a bad deal when it presents itself, is long past being willing to suffer fools gladly, and who takes voting very, very seriously.

Keep your statistics. Come on down and live a real life with the rest of us. I've propped up this society for decades with my hard work and, I hope, responsible citizenship. I sure as heck deserve something for my efforts, and what I'll get is no gift, it will be self-funded, American-style.

In reply to Spencer
Dec. 3, 2012 at 10:53 a.m.
Recommended171

O v. O --No!

The Big Budget Mumble - NYTimes.com
In the ongoing battle of the budget, President Obama has done something very cruel. Declaring that this time he won’t negotiate with himself, he has refused to lay out a proposal reflecting what he thinks Republicans want. Instead, he has demanded that Republicans themselves say, explicitly, what they want. And guess what: They can’t or won’t do it...

Best JFK Conspiracy Yet

Cannon really does a great job exposing problems with Oswald et. al. in this post-- Cannonfire: "Killing Kennedy"

Vote Robbing Cheese Style

Wisconsin Government Accountability Board - Wisconsin: Where The Burglers Want To Pick The Cops - Esquire
In a certain mad way, you have to admire the Republicans in the state of Wisconsin. The stamina and diligence with which they discover new ways to clown up their elections is something to behold. The latest gambit comes from the incoming Majority Leader of the state senate, one Peter Fitzgerald, a product of one the state's most prominent clans of hack conservatives. It is the opinion of this gentleman that the state's independent Government Accountability Board, which is made up of retired judges and is resolutely nonpartisan, has issued one too many decisions with which Fitzgerald does not agree. His solution? Let the governor appoint the members! What could possibly go wrong there...

Moderate GOPer Quits

Emerson unexpectedly resigns her Missouri congressional seat - KansasCity.com
...“This is not a comfortable body any more for people like Jo Ann Emerson,” said Norm Ornstein, a political scholar with the American Enterprise Institute. “So leaving for a good job outside Congress is a logical, if depressing, step...”

Sunday, December 02, 2012

About The Elites


Compassion & Cameras

Citizens are Winning the Battle over Cops and Cameras | The Smirking Chimp
...Ms Foster reported on her Facebook page that Officer DePrimo told the man, “I have these size 12 boots for you, they are all-weather. Let’s put them on and take care of you.” He, then, helped the man put on his socks and the new warm boots.

Truth be told, this kind of unsung compassion goes on all the time. Teachers are notorious for spending their own money and time to buy poor, needy kids things not provided by the school system -- even breakfast. Similarly, people in a range of service professions spend their own resources to help people ignored by cold-blooded institutions. US military personnel do it all the time as they serve in foreign locales. I saw it in Viet Nam when I was there as a kid with my fellow soldiers, all of us, in my view, serving the larger, destructive institution of American imperialism.

To me, such cases are examples of bottom-up decency in a world too often overwhelmed by top-down institutional callousness...

GOPer Benghazi Surprise

This doesn't quite rise to the level of me dragging out the "Hell Freezes Over" pix, but it's a darn close call.

GOP Rep. to former Bush staffer: Investigate WMD claims before attacking Susan Rice | The Raw Story
Rep. Tom Cole, a Republican from Oklahoma, says that if lawmakers are going to go after U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice over her initial public assessment of the September attack in Benghazi then maybe Congress should also look at how President George W. Bush pushed bad intelligence about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq...

Don't Threaten, Do

Pelosi threatens House vote on tax bill – CNN Political Ticker - CNN.com Blogs
Warning that "the clock is ticking," House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi on Sunday threatened to bring about a House vote on a bill that would extend the Bush-era tax cuts for families making $250,000, but would allow the tax breaks to expire for those above the threshold...

Saturday, December 01, 2012

The GOP And Rice

Note: Sorry guys I had to turn the word check back on. I got buried in spam within 24 hours of turning it off.

Why Republicans love John Kerry
...If she is not picked, Kerry would be the logical next choice, and that selection would lead to a special election and a potential GOP pickup. Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.), who just lost reelection, would have a very reasonable chance of winning that special election, despite the state’s blue lean. And, yes, Senate Republicans are well aware of that series of dominoes...

Battle Ground Shift In The Class War

Class Wars of 2012 - NYTimes.com
...And the Obama campaign won largely by disregarding the warnings of squeamish “centrists” and embracing that reality, stressing the class-war aspect of the confrontation. This ensured not only that President Obama won by huge margins among lower-income voters, but that those voters turned out in large numbers, sealing his victory.

The important thing to understand now is that while the election is over, the class war isn’t. The same people who bet big on Mr. Romney, and lost, are now trying to win by stealth — in the name of fiscal responsibility — the ground they failed to gain in an open election...

More Right Whining

Medical Wars And Monopoly