Thursday, February 28, 2013

Women's Victory Leaves Unhappy GOPers

Domestic violence law clears House, but some Republicans aren't happy -
The Violence Against Women Act now goes to President Obama's desk, but a majority of Republicans in the House didn't back it. Some say the domestic violence law was flawed and rammed through by leadership...

Darth Going To Hell

l knew this but it's nice to have some confirmation.

Crooks and Liars--"GOP Rep Says Dick Cheney Will Rot in Hell Over Iraq War"
Former Vice President Dick Cheney is probably going to hell for his role in the Iraq War, Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC) said while speaking at a Young Americans for Liberty conference in Raleigh, N.C...

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Scalia Goes Stupid

No, Justice Scalia, the right to vote is not an ‘entitlement’ — MSNBC
Today in the arguments over the Voting Rights Act, Justice Scalia called the act a racial “entitlement.”

Got that? “Entitlement”? The right to vote is an “entitlement,” like Medicaid or food stamps.

No, it’s not.

Under the 15th Amendment to the Constitution, the “right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.” That amendment was ratified in 1870 under the administration of President Grant, one of my heroes.

As we all know, it was put into effect–after a century of poll taxes, literacy tests, and other gimmicks to keep blacks from voting–only because of the Voting Rights Act of 1965...

The GOP Needs Christie...

...a lot more than he needs the GOP.

Is Chris Christie finished in the GOP? | The Middle Ground |
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, still in the GOP dog house for saying nice things about President Obama's handling of Superstorm Sandy mere days before the November election, angered conservative critics once again this week by announcing that he would expand Medicaid under ObamaCare. The news came as the organizers of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), the annual enclave of the nation's conservatives, said they didn't invite Christie to this year's gathering because he has a "limited future" in the Republican Party, in part because of his backing of gun-control legislation, which is toxic to many conservatives...

More Thievery On Wall Street

Wall Street Bonuses Rise To $20 Billion | FDL News Desk
The fleecing class had quite a year. Despite providing little to no valuable goods or services .Wall Street has once again siphoned off a huge share of America’s wealth for itself. While Americans foolishly dreamed of a time gone by where opportunity existed for the non-rich as well as the rich, Wall Street broke into their bedrooms and stole their wallets...

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Medicare Best At Cost Containment

Simply Left BehindThe Non-Rapturist's Guide To The Galaxy: Bad Medicine
...We all know stories of the aspirin that costs $5 a piece, and we're told its because there's overhead and salaries and equipment to cover. Brill demolishes that shady defense, and points out that most of the money lines the pocket of shareholders and executives of hospitals, doctors' groups and insurers.

As I said higher up, insurers almost look like they're getting scammed, except Medicare. Brill lays out a very strong case for single-payer healthcare, pointing out that Medicare/Medicaid actually get the most cost-effective "bang for the buck" of any insurer out there...and they are still mandated to cover a comfortable profit margin for healthcare providers.

Hagel Okayed

Senate Confirms Hagel as Defense Secretary -
The Senate on Tuesday confirmed Chuck Hagel as the nation's next defense secretary largely along party lines, after several Republicans earlier in the day ended their effort to stop a vote on the former senator.

The 58-41 vote brings to a close a contentious battle that some experts believe could leave Mr. Hagel in a weaker position to take up the mantle at a challenging time for the Pentagon, which faces a series of deep budget cuts...

Old Fashioned Work Ethic

Restaurant Owner Finds Dedicated Teen Walking 10 Snowy Miles for Job Interview — Guess Where He’s Working Now | Video |
...Bouvier continued in his post that 15 minutes later he was in the car and told his wife to pull over when he spotted the teen — still walking.

That’s when he found out the 18-year-old named Jhaqueil Reagan had intended to walk a full 10 miles for a job interview. The Bouviers gave Reagan a ride the rest of the distance — but that’s not all.

“I’m thinking to myself, here’s a kid walking almost 10 miles in the ice and slush and snow for the hope of a job at minimum wage,” Bouvier told Fox 59. “That’s the kind of story your parents used to tell, my parents used to tell, up both ways in the snow...”

Monday, February 25, 2013

GOPer To GOPer: Negotiate

GOP governors to Hill Republicans: Do something - David Nather -
Ask Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett and Utah Gov. Gary Herbert what they think of Hill Republicans’ strategy on the sequester, and you get the exact same response: “What strategy?”

It’s a sign that Republican governors might be still giving President Barack Obama a lot of the blame for the sequester — but they're fed up with their own side, too.

Their message for House Speaker John Boehner and other GOP leaders: It’s not OK to just sit on the sidelines. It’s time to do something to stop the automatic cuts, and fast...

GOPers Still Trying To Rig Elections

Bid to rework Electoral College in GOP favor meets resistence from unlikley source in Michigan - NY Daily News
Michigan Republicans are still trying to game the Electoral College.

The state GOP endorsed a plan over the weekend to reconfigure how Michigan's electoral votes are allocated, one that would significantly benefit Republican candidates by distributing the votes by congressional district instead of winner-take-all...

Tossing The Hot Potato

Republicans aim to call Obama's 'bluff' on spending cuts | Fox News
With just four days remaining until automatic budget cuts kick in, Republicans are looking to call President Obama's "bluff" -- by giving him the flexibility to spread around the budget-ax pain in a way that would prevent the kind of fiscal doomsday his administration is predicting...

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Scootin' Fraud & Hoverin' Too!

Uppity Woman | I'm just one of those Uppity Women. Live with it.
...Now there’s the obvious truth that some people are in need of these scooters. But the truth is, a hundred million dollars worth of people who have them have no business defrauding the Medicare and Medicaid systems at the peril of people who just got rejected this morning for a needed medical procedure. These people deserve to wake up one morning really soon not able to walk, and crawling to that free scooter they didn’t need the day before. The FBI won’t be going after these “customers”. That’s too bad. I think these system milkers all belong in jail and should be forced to reimburse Medicare and Medicaid for their part in this fraud.

One more thing. It seems that scooter website references to medicare are disappearing like cockroaches under a sink. Here’s USA Mobility’s “Medicare” reference page. Or what was their Medicare reference page.

Well, there is one silver lining here. I won’t have to look at that smug smirking bastard in that commercial who says, “It didn’t cost me a thing!” every five minutes on cable Tee Vee. I always wanted to smack that arrogant bastard in the face.

Up next, really soon we hope: Hoveround, where “Your local Mobility Specialist” is standing by!”……..and “9 out of 10 Hoveround owners got their electric wheehchair at little or no cost.”

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Medical Scamming At Every Level

Very thorough post that refernces and even more thorough article.

Healthcare Isn't A Free Market, It's A Giant Economic Scam | Techdirt
...The system is completely broken. In researching other aspects of the system, I'd already come to the conclusion that it should be scrapped entirely, with something completely different put in its place, but this article just helps take that belief to another level. And, the scary thing is that the chances of that happening are basically zero. We're stuck with this system, in part because the economic incentives are screwed up so much that it's ripe for widespread abuse. And when you have so many billions of dollars flowing, with a small group of folks profiting massively from that, there's simply no chance they'll allow for any real changes.

And, the really scary thing is that the bits I've talked about here really only scratch the surface of Brill's overall article. And, his article really only touches on one part of the problem. It is a key part of the problem, but it's still just one part. And each of the other parts tend to look equally insane when you start digging deeper. We are in the middle of the most horrifying economic experiment ever constructed with our healthcare system, and it's only impacting almost everyone's lives. Oh yeah, and there's no real interest in taking on the actual problems.

Fonda Turned Ted Blue

Blame Jane: Ted Turner's son says Fonda made dad a lib | Fox News
Teddy Turner, son of billionaire media mogul Ted Turner and Republican candidate for Congress, said his father’s marriage to Jane Fonda prompted his major left turn.

“I was raised in a different time at the Turner household … a very conservative household with capitalism and all of that kind of stuff,” the younger Turner told Newsmax TV’s “The Steve Malzberg Show...”

Oh, and just to make a small point about Jane Fonda-- she was closer to the action than Skippy Bush and 99% of the wingnut warmongers who beat the drums incessantly while shedding not a drop of blood, sweat, or tears for this country.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Comment Of The Day: Debt Edition

David Brooks on Sequestration - David Brooks Explains It All To You - Esquire
Dave Wing · Top Commenter · Butte, Montana

The United States does not have a debt problem. Individuals, households and businesses can have debt problems. That is because these entities are not able to create their own currencies out of thin air and give such currency to their creditors in payment of their debts. Countries like Greece, Spain and Portugal can and do have debt problems because they no longer have a sovereign, fiat currency. They gave up their currencies when they joined the Eurozone and now must pay their debts in Euros.

Countries like the United States, Japan and England possess their own currencies that are not tied to gold or any other precious metal. They can always pay their debts.

Any time the U.S. wants to, it can create more money. In fact it does this all the time. Under certain circumstances, this could lead to inflation. But those are not the circumstances that we have now. We have severe unemployment and underemployment in this country and underutilization of factories and other productive assets.

Viewing our current economic situation in terms of a debt problem or a deficit problem results in this country not doing exactly what it should be doing which is to spend massive amounts of money on our neglected infrastrucure or in expanding broadband access or in (fill in the blank________). This would put people back to work. Their lives would improve. New taxes would be paid by newly employed workers and, guess what, the deficit would start to shrink.

Voodoo Econ Goin' Strong

Ending Income Inequality Requires Going After Capital Gains | The Contributor
Conservatives argue that by cutting taxes on the wealthy, money and wealth will "trickle down" to the middle and lower class in the form of jobs. A new study seems to confirm what we all have knows for years - tax cuts for the rich overwhelmingly benefit the rich.

Income inequality has risen for three decades and worsened since the recession ended. Last fall, the Congressional Budget Office found that incomes for the richest 1 percent soared 275 percent between 1979 and 2007. For the middle 60 percent of Americans, average incomes grew just under 40 percent...

Sequester Tips

8 Ways the Sequester Could Ruin Your Life - The Daily Beast
...But people with defense-related jobs aren’t the only ones who will feel the pain. While Congress deliberates, don’t you think you should be prepared for some of the effects these budget cuts could have on your life? We do. Here are a few tips...

Thursday, February 21, 2013

GOP Saving State Into Bankruptcy

N.C. Legislature is making an expensive point |
...Gov. Pat McCrory, meanwhile, said Tuesday that he does not want the federal government to pay 100 percent of health insurance costs for 500,000 poor North Carolinians. The House could vote as soon as Wednesday to pass a bill that turns down $2 billion in federal money per year for three years, and billions more in the years after that.

Um, ladies and gentlemen of the House and Senate, could you stop “saving” us so much money?...

Brown Rises

Poll: Approval for governor, Legislature rises - San Jose Mercury News
A new Field Poll finds that Jerry Brown is enjoying his highest job-performance ratings since returning to the governor's office two years ago.

The survey released Thursday shows that 57 percent of registered voters approve of the job the Democratic governor is doing, with 31 percent disapproving. It is the first time Brown's rating has been above 50 percent since he began his latest term in January 2011...

What Hath Rush Wrought?

RINOs need to take back the Republican Party | The Middle Ground |
...Yet, as always, the base manages to control the message because it is vocal, loud and, most important, makes for “Good TeeVee.” Spittle sells. Stay calm and carry on . . . right past the elevators and leave your visitor badge on the counter on your way out the door...

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

High O

Obama Rated at 3-Year High in Poll, Republicans at Bottom - Bloomberg

President Barack Obama enters the latest budget showdown with Congress with his highest job- approval rating in three years and public support for his economic message, while his Republican opponents’ popularity stands at a record low...

McCain Reaping What He Sowed

John McCain Attacked By His Hate Filled Misinformed Constituents At Town Hall Meeting (VIDEO)
Blowback is very dangerous. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Many in the Republican Party are starting to find that out. Sadly it is materially affecting the entire country. The country is in a state of policy paralysis because of the monster the Republican Party, Fox News, and the Right Wing echo chamber have created in their zeal to slow down at best, or prevent at worst the policies of President Obama’s administration...

Evil Apple Virus Problems

O Goes Local

Barack Obama goes on local TV in fight with Republicans over budget cuts |
Washington: President Barack Obama turned to local television stations across the United States on Wednesday to increase public pressure on congressional Republicans to avert $85 billion in budget cuts set to begin in nine days...

This Is Not The South

Mich. hospital denies honoring father's racial request
...Last month, Battle, an African American, filed a lawsuit contending that the hospital prohibited her from caring for an infant last year because a man objected to her race.

She said the problem occurred when the father of a newborn found her caring for his child in October. When she asked to see his identification as he reached toward the child, he demanded to see her supervisor, she told the Detroit Free Press on Monday. According to Battle, a note was placed on the assignment chart that read: "No African-American nurse to take care of baby..."

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Banality Of The (Evil) Press

The Silence Of The Liberals

DC’s quest to silence Elizabeth Warren -
...No, what’s important here is what Politico actually got right in its story: namely, that the assumption in Washington is, indeed, that silence is a virtue – that, in other words, the best thing for a newly elected liberal senator to do is shut her mouth, go along to get along, play by the club’s rules and not make any waves. Summing up that Beltway conventional wisdom, Politico writes that only by “flying under the radar” can a liberal “star” like Warren develop a “reputation as a serious legislator...”
An update on a rather key personal point of view:
Elizabeth Warren Embarrasses Hapless Bank Regulators At First Hearing (VIDEO) 
...A Warren constituent, open-Internet activist Aaron Swartz, recently committed suicide after being hounded by federal prosecutors who reportedly said they wanted to "make an example" of him. Warren had met and said she admired Swartz and, after he died, expressed her concern by attending his memorial in Washington.
The financial regulators can blame, at least in part, Wall Street lobbyists (along with outgoing Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and Senate Republicans) for their embarrassing turn at the hearing. Warren would have been on the panel herself representing the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, instead of a sitting senator, if her nomination to head the agency hadn't been thwarted in 2011.

Not Playing Nice

Ted Cruz, the G.O.P.’s Nasty Newcomer -
WHEN a Vesuvius like John McCain tells you that you belch too much smoke and spew too much fire, you know you’ve got a problem...

Also, a point from the comment thread:
  • AB
  • Maryland

Can we please stop assuming that a person's surname indicates racial identity and political ideology? Some of us carry around the surnames of slave master ancestors, e.g., Dr. Hrabowski, president of UMBC, a black man. Some of us bear the same surname as our Jewish American brethren, although we may be black and Roman Catholic.

Hispanic is not a race. Why this bears repeating I'll never understand. In fact, 54 percent of Hispanics consider themselves white.

Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio attempt to play the "minority" card, but they are not minorities. Let their actions, bigotry, and small-mindedness speak for themselves.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Video Game Racism

Church v. State

What Are The Gobshites Saying These Days? - Esquire
...CARDINAL DONALD WUERL: I think the real challenge that the-- the church faces today and that the next pope will have to lead us in addressing is the overwhelming influence of secularism that's-- that's really drowning out the voice of religion, the voice of faith. Each one of us is called to a relationship with God in whatever tradition we belong. We're all called to that relationship. And we have to keep focusing on that. I think it's going to be the task of the Pope to say there's a spiritual mission, and that's the work of the church.

Oh, balls. The problem with the Church is that the influence of secularism -- particularly of the secular apparatus of the law -- has not been anywhere near overwhelming enough. It's not Quentin Tarantino who's drowning out the voice of your religion, it's the moral outcry of millions of victims, the din of unexpiated sins. The problem with the Church is not a lack of faith, it's the overabundance of crime.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Saving Some GOPers

GOPers Extend Shaft To Civil Service

Lone Wolf fights his party’s effort to extend freeze on pay of federal workers - The Washington Post
...“Let’s be honest,” Wolf wrote, “this bill is nothing more than a political stunt that targets the hardworking, dedicated men and women of the civil service, who have already had their salaries frozen for more than two years. Everyone knows they are an easy target. But we are kidding ourselves if we think we can balance the budget on the backs of federal employees. It’s a drop in the bucket towards deficit reduction and a hollow gesture absent meaningful mandatory spending reforms. Worse, this is just busywork as our economy faces the sequestration meat ax.”

All but one letter focused on particular groups of workers. Fifteen law enforcement and national security agencies that employ feds are cited in a letter that says, “This bill would freeze their pay for the third year.” Another says, “The nurses and doctors at the VA who care for our veterans and wounded warriors — they haven’t had a pay raise in more than two years. I know I’m not alone in wanting the best doctors and nurses to care for our veterans...”

When Is A Plan Not?

Saturday, February 16, 2013

GOPers In Favor Of Voting Act

Reagan's Attorney General Slams Voter Suppression Agenda, When Will More Republicans Do the Same?
...So what's changed? What is it that hyper-partisans on the right find so hard to accept about the last few elections? Why must they reject the outcomes as "cheating?" Do they not believe that minority communities are growing? Do they not believe that, in this age of aggressive attempts to codify racism into our laws, minorities are registering to vote and voting in larger numbers? Do they not believe that increasing numbers of white Americans are rejecting the politics of division, such that ploys to foment racial antagonism provide limited upside and may even backfire? Or do they simply reject the right of We the People to elect a government that represents our interests, now that a politically significant number of us are non-white?

But most importantly, when will principled conservatives serving in the U.S. Senate, in the U.S. House, and in governors' mansions come forward to denounce this desperate, radical attack on voting rights breaking out like a rash across America?

Minimum Wage Discussion

Here's an excellent summation for the arguments concerning the minimum wage. Cannonfire-"More On The Minimum Wage"

A Modest Proposal (For The FCC)

You make it sound like a *bad* thing, Glenn « The Confluence
...In my humble opinion, the right wing nutjobs like Glenn have been doing just that, inducing fear and panic in average people with their irrationality and lies.

I’d be happy if the FCC cited and fined him for lying all the time. Surely Glenn could get onboard with that, right? Why don’t we ask him? Is it OK to lie to people in order to get them to feel anxious, fearful and willing to do just about anything to protect themselves from non-existent threats?

Friday, February 15, 2013

Rubio's Brain Eaten By Zombie Ideas

Rubio and the Zombies -
...On the other hand, the G.O.P. reply, delivered by Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, was both interesting and revelatory. And I mean that in the worst way. For Mr. Rubio is a rising star, to such an extent that Time magazine put him on its cover, calling him “The Republican Savior.” What we learned Tuesday, however, was that zombie economic ideas have eaten his brain.

In case you’re wondering, a zombie idea is a proposition that has been thoroughly refuted by analysis and evidence, and should be dead — but won’t stay dead because it serves a political purpose, appeals to prejudices, or both. The classic zombie idea in U.S. political discourse is the notion that tax cuts for the wealthy pay for themselves, but there are many more. And, as I said, when it comes to economics it appears that Mr. Rubio’s mind is zombie-infested...

Warren Looking For Answers

Sen. Warren Grills Top Regulators - Washington Wire - WSJ
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) seems determined to make a splash.

Just a few weeks after she was sworn in, Ms. Warren used her first appearance at a Senate Banking Committee hearing to grill top U.S. banking and market regulators.

Ms. Warren could have been among them but for strong disapproval from Republicans. She was the leading candidate to run the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in 2011, but as opposition grew, President Barack Obama turned instead to former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray...

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Disgusting Cons

My Gun Fear Exactly

Shakesville: Quote of the Day
...I am not afraid of dying at the hands of an Islamic terrorist. I am, however, very afraid of dying at the hands of a frightened neighbor amped up by alarmist rhetoric and armed with deadly weaponry, who shoots first and finds out later I was walking up the driveway to ask if this wandering cat with the homemade collar is their pet.

Not Seeing Victims

Conservatives Have….Issues, Part One Million | The Raw Story
Molly Ball of the Atlantic decided to delve into why it is that Republicans have caved into conservative pressure groups who oppose the Violence Against Women Act. The reasons that conservatives gave her were, she had to admit, shallow and idiotic and, if she delved in deeper (the claim that VAWA is making domestic violence worse is simply not true), straight up dishonest, but she didn’t make the obvious leap and realize that perhaps conservatives oppose VAWA because they are misogynist, and that all the excuses they give are attempts to deflect people from seeing the obvious...

Lest We Forget: PUMA Edition

Throwing down the gauntlet « The Confluence
...PUMA was only tangentially about Hillary Clinton. We thought she was the best candidate in 2008 but the fact that she was a woman was only icing on the cake.

PUMA was about voters. When the party decided to manipulate the delegate count to get their predetermined outcome, ignoring 18000000 voters, they crossed the line with many of us. If Obama had won fair and square, we would have voted for him. The fact that he didn’t signalled to us that he wasn’t going to listen to voters. When the party turned over our votes and our protestations were squashed by the likes of Kos, Obama figured that he could do just about anything without any reference to the voters in his base. And that’s just what he’s done...

Some People Are Just Special

Kanye West, Kim Kardashian Bypass Security at JFK - ABC News
Authorities say Kanye West and Kim Kardashian had to be privately screened after an airline employee allowed them to bypass a security checkpoint at New York's Kennedy International Airport...

Hagel Being Koch-Owned Blocked

Senate Democratic leader says Republicans blocking Hagel | Reuters
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made an impassioned appeal on Thursday for confirmation of Chuck Hagel as President Barack Obama's new secretary of defense, as Republicans said he might not get the 60 votes needed to overcome roadblocks preventing a vote on his confirmation...

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

O Comes A-Visiting

...and Jesse Helms does another 360 in the grave. (Remember Senator No threatening a Second Amendment welcome to Bill Clinton? Imagine what Obama would do to him.) Obama Takes Second-Term Agenda on the Road -

A Rose Is A Rose...

SOTU {{facepalm}} « The Confluence
...Update: So, apparently the new meme is “Down with Austerity! Up with a balanced approach of spending cuts and tax increases!” A “balanced approach of spending cuts and tax increases” is still AUSTERITY. I’m sorry, no matter how you slice it, when you cut spending in the midst of a depression, which is what we are in right now, the consequence is going to be AUSTERITY and a return to more recession. Can we cut the crap already, Barry? You need to spend money, the money you can get for ridiculously low interest rates, and put people back to work. Anything else is AUSTERITY...

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Who Will Give The Democratic Response To The SOTU?

Dorner And The Left

The Rude Pundit --No, Liberals Aren't Making Alleged Killer Christopher Dorner Into a Hero:
...Also, in his manifesto, Dorner praised media figures, condemned conservative beliefs, and said that he was a victim of ongoing racism in the LAPD. Because some people think that the allegations in the manifesto might bear investigation, people like, you know, the notoriously liberal LAPD, that must mean that those people want to elect Dorner the next Pope. Mostly, the right is acting all hurt because they think that if Dorner had been a Tea Party member or a right-winger, his views on anything would be dismissed and called lunacy. Here's the thing: Dorner isn't saying he's on a killing spree because he's afraid Mitch McConnell will get rid of Obamacare. In other words, his political beliefs are not his motivation. When Jim Adkisson shot up the Unitarian church in Knoxville, Tennesseee, in 2008, he said it was because he hated liberals.

Again and again and again, the right in this country thinks that it's impossible to hold a couple of thoughts in one's head at the same time. You can think that Dorner might have a legitimate grievance that he is bringing to the public's attention in the worst possible way. And you can also hope that the authorities shoot, or, preferably, arrest the messenger.

Older Voter

In contrast to the GOP inviting Ted Nugent to the SOTU address, Obama invites:

Desiline Victor, 102-Year-Old Determined Miami Voter, Will Join Michelle Obama For State Of The Union
A determined Florida centenarian who had to make two trips and wait several hours to vote for President Barack Obama last fall will sit with first lady Michelle Obama during Tuesday's State of the Union. Her resolve became a symbol of early voting obstacles in the presidential election...

Monday, February 11, 2013


The Ignorance Caucus -
...The truth is that America’s partisan divide runs much deeper than even pessimists are usually willing to admit; the parties aren’t just divided on values and policy views, they’re divided over epistemology. One side believes, at least in principle, in letting its policy views be shaped by facts; the other believes in suppressing the facts if they contradict its fixed beliefs.

In her parting shot on leaving the State Department, Hillary Clinton said of her Republican critics, “They just will not live in an evidence-based world.” She was referring specifically to the Benghazi controversy, but her point applies much more generally. And for all the talk of reforming and reinventing the G.O.P., the ignorance caucus retains a firm grip on the party’s heart and mind.

Connecticut 2013

Tax Thieves

Last year I had to borrow money to pay my federal income tax-- on a teacher's pension and social security (that's what you get, I guess, for living a frugal life). I hope I don't hammered this year but who knows-- I can't afford sqardrons of lawyers and accountants, but the following folks have no problems with such things.

Sen. Bernie Sanders: A Choice For Corporate America: Are You With America Or The Cayman Islands
...In 2010, Bank of America set up more than 200 subsidiaries in the Cayman Islands (which has a corporate tax rate of 0.0 percent) to avoid paying U.S. taxes. It worked. Not only did Bank of America pay nothing in federal income taxes, but it received a rebate from the IRS worth $1.9 billion that year. They are not alone. In 2010, JP Morgan Chase operated 83 subsidiaries incorporated in offshore tax havens to avoid paying some $4.9 billion in U.S. taxes. That same year Goldman Sachs operated 39 subsidiaries in offshore tax havens to avoid an estimated $3.3 billion in U.S. taxes. Citigroup has paid no federal income taxes for the last four years after receiving a total of $2.5 trillion in financial assistance from the Federal Reserve during the financial crisis...

Anonymous Joins The Dorner Fray

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Darth Disses

Rebeating A Very Dead Horse

... featuring a still-closeted politician/
Senator Vows to Delay Obama's Nominees Over Libya - Yahoo! News
A leading Republican senator said Sunday he would hold up Senate confirmation of President Barack Obama's nominees to head the Pentagon and the CIA until the White House provided more answers about the Sept. 11 attack against a U.S. installation in Benghazi, Libya.

The White House took aim at South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, a persistent critic of Obama's response to the terrorist assault, by urging quick approval of the president's second-term national security team and scolding any lawmakers trying to "play politics" with critical nominations...

The Return Of Debtors Prisons

Arkansas law jails tenants who don’t pay their rent | The Raw Story
Under a state law in Arkansas, renters can be imprisoned for failing to pay their rent. According to a report by Human Rights Watch, titled “Pay the Rent or Face Arrest: Abusive Impacts of Arkansas’s Criminal Evictions Law,” hundreds of tenants each year are taken to court, fined and jailed under the state’s “failure to vacate” law...

Killing The PO

Fox' Bolling Blames Union Contracts for the U.S. Postal Service's Financial Woes | Video Cafe
"...No, in the view of the majority of the panel members on this Saturday's edition of Cashin' In, that's a terrible thing that those people are gainfully employed and heaven forbid have union representation and it's all their fault that the Post Office is in financial straights. And par for the course with these "business block" shows of theirs, the only voice of reason was the one, poor, lonely outnumbered "liberal" Christian Dorsey, who did actually tell the truth about one of the problems -- which is that Congress has "forced the USPS to pre-fund 75 years’ worth of pensions for its employees, a requirement not made of any other public or private institution."

Instead we were treated to the rest of them screaming that we need to privatize the Postal Service, lying and telling the audience that other industries would provide the same services less expensively and ignoring, other than Dorsey again, that they have a mandate to serve all Americans which those other companies are not bound by. It really just boiled down to another shameful exercise in union bashing, which is what these Saturday shows on Fox do week, after week, after week, or at least when they're not attacking the poor and demonizing liberals in general..."

The LA Cop Hunt

Excellent update on the Dorner situation. The comment thread is particularly interesting and makes the point that even given all we know he is accused of, Dorner still has support in the LA community, so what does that say about the LAPD?  LA cops stalked by suspect -- and a brutal past -

Saturday, February 09, 2013

The Fox Loop

Can Fox News break its fatal embrace with irrelevance and the Republican party? | The Raw Story
...No matter who may be trying to end the marriage first, extricating themselves from the relationship won’t be graceful: the habits of mental cohabitation are too difficult to break. Witness the coverage of Benghazi, where conservative outrage on the channel remains strident and forceful and in harmony with Republican officials, despite the willingness of most of the country to move on to matters closer to home. It’s a positive feedback loop that spirals into irrelevance: Republicans pursue a conspiracy that only Fox viewers believe, based on reports only Fox airs, and new information gets hammered into a shape that fits the existing narrative...

Friday, February 08, 2013

Stalling The Economy

Corporate Hoarding and the Slow Recovery -
So corporations are taking a much bigger slice of total income — and are showing little inclination either to redistribute that slice back to investors or to invest it in new equipment, software, etc.. Instead, they’re accumulating piles of cash...

Wingnut Round-up

Skeeter Season | his vorpal sword
And so forth. Benghazi is going to be the new Whitewater, the new Birther controversy, the new Monica Lewinsky: an excuse to keep the country paralyzed, while the GOPs try to run out the clock on governance. As they did for Clinton’s entire two terms and Obama’s entire first term. The “skeptics” with the invisible Friend who wrote the Magic Book — neither of which would stand up to a moment of the skepticism they projectile vomit about proportional fonts, spacing, artifacts, photoshopped photos, faked documents, climate science, modern biology, Hawaiian birth laws, etcetera...

Thursday, February 07, 2013

Stressed Cops?

LAPD Shooting Innocents in Incompetent Manhunt for Killer Cop
...L.A. blogger Davey D writes that residents are being warned to stay out of pickup trucks similar to the one Dorner is said to be driving:

TV news stations in LA are warning people not to drive pick up trucks in LA and to obey all traffic laws or rick being shot by police who are all stressed out and tense.. This is happening right now.. Its no exaggeration…

Sandy Hook Father Speaks Out

Stem Cell Printer

'Stem Cell Printing' Gets Closer, As Scientists Use 3D Technology To Spit Out Human Embryonic Cells
Imagine if you could take living cells, load them into a printer, and squirt out a 3D tissue that could develop into a kidney or a heart. Scientists are one step closer to that reality, now that they have developed the first printer for embryonic human stem cells...

What Causes Postal Problems?

Will the threat of five-day mail shock Congress into action on postal reform? - The Washington Post
...Oceans of ink have been spilled debating whether the Postal Service’s crisis is a self-inflicted one caused by Congress’s decision to order more than $5 billion per year in health-benefit prepayments — or the inevitable consequence of technological obsolescence and high fixed costs, especially labor costs...

GOP Shafting Poor, Part The Infinite

Republicans who oppose Obamacare could deny millions of low-income people insurance | theGrio
Still opposed to President Obama’s health care law, a growing number of Republican governors are declaring they will reject federal funds for Medicaid that they could receive next year, putting almost 5 million low-income Americans in danger of not getting health insurance...

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

NRA Lying About Newtown Response

Fox Loses Dick

...and it's a small loss on so many levels.

Dick Morris Fired by Fox? CNN to Get Scoop Wednesday Night
Longtime Fox News analyst Dick Morris is slated to join CNN's Piers Morgan tonight at 9 p.m. (EST) to discuss his mysterious disappearance from Fox since shortly after last November's election...

Ending Oil Give-Aways

Dem. US Rep. Markey: End oil company subsidies - News -
U.S. Rep. Edward Markey is calling for the repeal of roughly $7 billion in annual tax subsidies and free drilling that he said benefits the nation’s largest oil companies.

The Massachusetts Democrat, who is also a candidate in the special U.S. Senate election, said he would submit legislation mandating the repeal...

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Screech Harpy Goes Bombastic

Ann Coulter To Obama: 'Screw You' Over Gun Control Remarks (VIDEO)
Ann Coulter got very heated discussing President Obama's speech about gun control on Tuesday, telling him "screw you" for what she said was demonizing legal gun owners...

Murdering Us

Daily Politics Blog - Charles P. Pierce - Political Blogging - Esquire --The Pulpit's Bully
...The whole loaf is to be found in the second story. NBC got hold of a memo from the Justice Department in which was laid out the case that the president has the power to use drones to kill American citizens if he and the unelected national security bureaucracy determine that the American in question are "senior operational leaders" of al-Qaida or "an associated force." This is true even if there's no evidence at all that the person or persons being killed are planning to commit an act of terror. The Americans don't have to be accused -- let alone charged -- with an actual crime. All that suffices for the extrajudicial killing of an American now is that someone (or several someones) in Washington decide that the American has been involved "recently" in "activities" that might threaten a violent act...

Instead of getting all bug-eyed and mouth foamy over Bushmasters, how about some screaming and yelling over this gross violation of every right you have have as a citizen and human being?

Monday, February 04, 2013

The Far Right Of The Far Right

NRA CEO shocked that he was called out by Fox News
You know you have to be on the far fringe of right-wing extremism when you get called out by Fox News...

Torture Obscured OBL Hunt

This post might just remove that last lingering shred of respect you had for Deadeye Darth Cheney. Cheney's Folly: How Torture Cost Us 7 Years in the Hunt for UBL | MyFDL

NRA Wants To Revolt?

Josh Horwitz: LaPierre Reveals True Purpose Behind Assault Weapons
...During a hearing in which Republican Senators actively tried to portray assault weapons as merely "scary-looking" pieces of plastic with no real functional purpose, LaPierre's statement revealed that they are in fact weapons of choice for individuals ready to wage war on our government. This was certainly not the first time LaPierre had made such a declaration -- remember, this is the guy who told us "the guys with the guns make the rules" at a CPAC conference -- but his statement on Wednesday was nonetheless remarkable because it so clearly articulated the insurrectionist idea on a national stage, linking it directly to the need for unfettered access to assault weapons. Now, no doubt remains about the type of "firepower" citizens would need in order to fight LaPierre's "tyranny" ... The same type of firepower that Adam Lanza used to kill 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary...
Note: The comment thread at the post is loaded with violent threats from Second Amendment patriots, including calls for insurrection. A tyrannical government would be rounding them all up just about now. If these threats had been launched during the reign of Skippy Bush, Homeland Security would be storming the gates and Fox News would be calling for public hangings.

The Biggest Losers

Americans Closest to Retirement Were Hardest Hit by Recession -
These Americans in their 50s and early 60s — those near retirement age who do not yet have access to Medicare and Social Security — have lost the most earnings power of any age group, with their household incomes 10 percent below what they made when the recovery began three years ago, according to Sentier Research, a data analysis company...

Killing Your Daughter

Uppity Woman recounts this appalling tale before this summary bit:

Cockroach of the week is a No Contest – Saudi Arabian degenerate rapes, tortures and murders his own child. « Uppity Woman
...Only when tortured Middle Eastern women rise up and kill the oppressive animals who torture them — in their sleep — on the same night –will they be able to live in peace and dignity. Because this is what a barbaric repressive theocracy does to women and girls.

Don’t expect our Pravda press to make a big deal of what happened to a five-year old girl at the claws of a monster in Saudi Arabia. Or that creatures with the same depraved mentality as this clinically insane “preacher’ move to the USA without a second look. That would be blasphemy or something. And they wonder why gun sales continue to rise among women. But hey! How about that Kim Kardashian!

RIP little girl. You’re probably better off dead than alive in Saudi Arabia.

Thank God we live in the USA, warts and all.

On Ann Rmoney Running

What Are The Gobshites Saying These Days? - Esquire
...I realize that the Herald has been utterly traumatized by the withdrawal of former Senator McDreamy, but the idea that all the Massachusetts Republican party needs to revive its hopes is to conjure up the magic name of...Romney! a call for an intervention of the most vigorous sort. By all means, let's gauge Ann's interest in getting out there and meeting You People again. Or let's see if the family's mad Bene Gesserit mind-skillz truly have the ability to warp the minds of the unwary.

If you understand the allusions, then you might just be a nerd.

How The NFL Has Changed

This post helps make it clear why comparing players from different eras is a fruitless enterprise. The same can be said for comparing politicians of different eras. Evolution of the NFL: 16 ways the game has changed - Players have bulked up in a big way -

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Generation Card Played

Democrats still saying Republicans aim to shortchange 'greatest generation' in fiscal deals | Fox News
President Obama and fellow Democrats are keeping up their argument that fiscal conservatives want set to slash entitlements for the country’s “greatest generation” to balance the budget for the country's greatest generations, despite no apparent plan...

NRA Insane?

They called me Friday asking for money. I was polite.

Paul Krugman: 'NRA Is Now Revealed as an Insane Organization' - Yahoo! News
Krugman weighs in on the NRA

KRUGMAN: No, there are plenty of gun-owners who are fine. But the lobbying groups, the NRA is now revealed as an insane organization, and that matters quite a lot...

When the GOP looks in the mirror, they see the NRA.

The Skeeters Have Arrived

Obama Skeet Shooting Photo Conspiracy Theories -- Daily Intelligencer
Almost immediately after President Obama casually mentioned to The New Republic that "up at Camp David, we do skeet shooting all the time," the Skeeter movement was born. (After all, if Obama really did murder clay pigeons regularly, then he wouldn't refer to it as "do[ing] skeet shooting," now would he?) Yesterday, the White House attempted to back up the president's tenuous skeet-cred by releasing the above photo of him shooting flying targets at Camp David on August 4. However, the Skeeters are unconvinced and have since posted a number of captions and Photoshops to Twitter expressing their doubt. And let's not forget all the credible technical explanations and daft conspiracy theories they're peddling for why President Obama couldn't possibly be skeet shooting (or "trapshooting," whatever that is.)...

Right Wing Fetus Lunacy

Today In Right Wing Lunacy we present some of the stupidest crap ever uttered by the mouth of anyone. Not content just to explore the boundaries of stupidity and ignorance, Mr. Swanson reaches into the Horror Twilight Zone to find zombie fetuses, giving the universe visuals that even bleach could not expunge from the minds scalded by this grotesque nonsense. And no, both sides don't have this level of utter contempt for women.

On The Pill? Tiny Dead Fetuses Are Eating Your Innards
...Swanson: I’m beginning to get some evidence from certain doctors and certain scientists that have done research on women’s wombs after they’ve gone through the surgery, and they’ve compared the wombs of women who were on the birth control pill to those who were not on the birth control pill. And they have found that with women who are on the birth control pill, there are these little tiny fetuses, these little babies, that are embedded into the womb. They’re just like dead babies. They’re on the inside of the womb. And these wombs of women who have been on the birth control pill effectively have become graveyards for lots and lots of little babies...

There Were Guns Around... why didn't someone stop the shooter?

Former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle Reportedly Killed at Shooting Range; Suspect Arrested - ABC News
A man is under arrest in connection with the killing of a former Navy SEAL and "American Sniper" author Chris Kyle and another man at an Erath County, Texas, gun range, police said...
Remember, it just takes one good man with a gun...

Saturday, February 02, 2013

Gun Deaths Since Newtown

The Daily Uh-Oh: Chinese Hacker Edition

China Wages Secret Cyber War Against The New York Times - Truthdig
“Revelations that China apparently targeted the New York Times in a campaign of cyber-espionage have cast a rare spotlight on attempts by Beijing to crack down on any criticism of its ruling elite,” The Guardian reports.

The effort was detected by the Times’ digital staff and is believed to have been linked to the paper’s October exposé on the riches accumulated by the family of outgoing president and leading communist Wen Jiabao. Beijing aggressively denies the allegations...

SOS Clinton Says Good-Bye

Video at the link (and do note the applause):
On Her Last Day, Hillary Clinton Stresses Gender Equality For Progress | Crooks and Liars
Wow. When was the last time you heard anyone applaud like that for their boss? Hillary Clinton said goodbye to the men and women of the State Department yesterday, stressing that gender equality can change the world for the better:...

Voucher Ed

14 Wacky "Facts" Kids Will Learn in Louisiana's Voucher Schools | Mother Jones
...Many of these schools, Kopplin notes, rely on Pensacola-based A Beka Book curriculum or Bob Jones University Press textbooks to teach their pupils Bible-based "facts," such as the existence of Nessie the Loch Ness Monster and all sorts of pseudoscience that researcher Rachel Tabachnick and writer Thomas Vinciguerra have thankfully pored over so the rest of world doesn't have to...

Head Doodler Dies

Achtung, Gunophiles

Replying to my pro-gun friends - Coffee Party USA
Dear friends who can't tolerate anyone bringing up gun control: You're not going to intimidate me with your !!!!s, ????s, WORDS IN ALL CAPS, namecalling, and threats to unfriend. I am going to speak my mind regardless of your protestations.

I just wish you loved the First Amendment as much as your reading of the Second Amendment. Instead trying to bully people into submission, let us speak freely. Most people aren't calling for a ban on guns contrary to your knee-jerk reactions. We want better regulations on something that is already regulated. We just want improvements. To quote my friend Jim Sanches, there's a difference between regulating and banning...

Friday, February 01, 2013

The Morality Of Hagel And McCain

Jim Wallis: John McCain's Theology of War Is Wrong
...Let me state some clear convictions from many of us in the faith community. The war in Vietnam was morally wrong. The war in Iraq was morally wrong. And John McCain has been morally wrong on both of them. Christian judgments of war should always run a narrow spectrum -- from the peacemaking ethic of Jesus, which rejects war to the just war theology of Augustine and Aquinas. But even in the just war tradition, conflicts have to pass a number of moral tests and be the option of "last resort." The burden of proof is always on those who support war to justify the taking of life...

NRA Hit List

Scott Says "No" To Senate

Republican Scott Brown won’t run in special election for Kerry’s Mass. Senate seat - The Washington Post
Former Sen. Scott Brown has confirmed he won’t run in a Senate special election, dealing a blow to Republicans who hoped to steal the seat formerly held by Democrat John Kerry.

Brown released a statement Friday afternoon making his decision official...

Clinton Gives GOP Figurative Bird

Hillary Clinton Interview: Secretary Of State Says Benghazi Critics Have Refused To 'Accept The Facts'
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is leaving office with a slap at critics of the Obama administration's handling of the September attack on a U.S. diplomatic mission in Libya. She told The Associated Press that critics of the administration's handling of the attack don't live in an "evidence-based world" and their refusal to "accept the facts" is unfortunate and regrettable for the political system...

My UnPrivate Idaho

Senator sees future for unmanned aerial drones in Idaho - Eye On Boise - - Jan. 31, 2013
A Boise lawmaker wants Idaho to be a player in the market for unmanned aerial drones, reports Bill Spence of the Lewiston Tribune; Sen. Chuck Winder, R-Boise, introduced two measures Thursday dealing with drones: One to encourage the state Department of Commerce to work with the U of I, BSU and others to compete to make the Gem State one of six unmanned aerial vehicle test sites; and another to prohibit surveillance or evidence-gathering by drones without landowner permission or a court order...