Saturday, February 12, 2011

CPAC Straw Poll Is In

So the crazies at CPAC, you know, the ones who cheered and chanted for Dick Cheney, voted for their Republican nominee preference. Here are the results:

Ron Raul: 30%
Mitt Romney: 23%
Gary Johnson 6%
Chris Christie 6%
Newt Gingrich: 5%
Tim Pawlenty 4%
Michele Bachmann 4%
Mitch Daniels 4%
Sarah Palin: 3%
Herman Cain 2%
Mike Huckabee 2%
Rick Santorum 2%
John Thune 2%
Jon Huntsman 1%
Haley Barbour 1%

Must Reads

The Rude Pundit: Welcome to the Monkeyhouse, GOP

Karoli: Clarence Thomas "Forgot" 20 Years of Disclosure? Really?

Bob Herbert: When Democracy Weakens

Sam Stein: Mitt Romney Supporters Working To Paint Him As The Anti-Palin

Evan McMorris-Santoro: It's Hard Out There For A Black Candidate At CPAC

Bob Cesca: The Republican War Against Women

Rachel D'Oro: Sarah Palin Reality Show Could Be Taxpayer-Subsidized

BBC News: 'Moby Dick' Captain's Ship Found

JHW22 recommmends...
Ruben Navarrette Jr.: Teaching Arabic is No Cause For Fear

Eric Alterman: Think Again: The 'Problem' of Liberal Academics, Again

This Man Is Nuts

Listen to Beck play the communist card like a fiddle. Asked to elaborate on what groups make up One Nation, the supposed organization that will bring down the US, he answers, "the labor unions, communist organizations and the Green movement." Labor unions, that were created to stop employer abuses of its workers, AKA the Average American. The Green movement and their hateful ideas to protect our environment and develop a new revenue source of green jobs in the country to save energy and control waste. He lumps them in with "communist organizations" but doesn't mention any one specific group. Way to scare the rubes there, Glenn.  Of course, if you're intellectually lazy and don't bother looking it up for yourself, why not just take his word for it? Also, buy some overpriced gold coins while you're at it - Glenn wouldn't rip you off, would he?

Here's One Nation's summarized mission statement:

One Nation Working Together is a social movement of individuals and organizations committed to putting America back to work and pulling America back together. Coming from a diverse set of backgrounds, experiences, beliefs and orientations, we are determined to build a more united country with good jobs, equal justice, and quality public education for all.
Good jobs, equal justice and quality public education... ooooh, those evil commie bastards!

Seems like everyone who does not agree with Beck is apparently a communist. It also seems like spreading democracy in the Middle East is a good thing when a Republican is in charge. Where was Beck when we were deposing dictators by force and propping up banana republics?

Oh, and by the way, Bill, it's "foment" not "forment."

President Obama's Weekly Address - February 12, 2011

"It's Time Washington Acted as Responsibly as Our Families Do"

Friday, February 11, 2011

Fractured GOP Indeed

No one is safe, not even at CPAC.

I don't know what's worse, the jingoism displayed by those in the room, the fact that they were awarding Donald Rumsfeld an award called "Defenders of The Constitiution" or the screams of approval for former VP Dick "Five Deferments, Face Shooter, Undisclosed Location" Cheney.

Luckily, some kept their heads and protested the guests standing in front of them, shouting "war criminal" "Where's Bin Laden?" "murdering scum," and "draft dodger." Ron Paul supporters walked out... and yet they still think going to CPAC every year is worth their time and money.

Down Goes Mubarak! Down Goes Mubarak!

Breaking News: Crowds in Egypt go wild as Vice President Omar Sulieman makes a brief announcement that President Hosni Mubarak has decided to step down and has delegated the Supreme Council of Military Forces to guide the country.

MSNBC's Richard Engel reports the crowd is in jubilation at the news.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Mubarak Refuses to Step Down. Release The Cracken!

While everyone waited with bated breath Egyptian President Mubarak's announcement that he would step down tonight as hundreds of thousands of protesters gathered in Tahrir Square, as we watched in anticipation of this generation's Berlin Wall, Mubarak came out and threw the meanest curveball I've ever seen.

...Mubarak announced he is handing his powers over to his vice president, Omar Suleiman, and ordered constitutional amendments. But the move means he retains his title of president and ensures regime control over the reform process, falling short of protester demands.
..."I have seen that it is required to delegate the powers and authorties of the president to the vice president as dictated in the constitution," Mubarak said near the end of a 15-minute address on state TV. The article is used to transfer powers if the president is "temporarily" unable to carry out his duties and does not mean his resignation.
According to reports, the frustrated protesters immediately began chanting, "Leave! Leave! Leave!", tore down the screen that was used to project Mubarak's address in the square and began marching towards the Presidential Palace.

How much longer are these protests going to remain peaceful? Soon afterward, Egyptian law scholar, diplomat and opposition opponent Mohamed ElBaradei tweeted: "Egypt will explode. Army must save the country now."

Nicholas Kristof reports:
This is of course manifestly unacceptable to the Egyptian people. Mubarak’s speech was a striking reminder of the capacity of dictators to fool themselves and see themselves as indispensable. If he thinks that his softer tone will win any support, he’s delusional. As he was speaking, the crowd in Tahrir was shouting “Irhal!” or “Go!” And the Egyptian state media — from television to Al Ahram, the dominant newspaper — have been turning against Mubarak, so he’s losing control even of his own state apparatus.
This is going to get ugly really fast. Perhaps Mubarak's trying to make his statement of dying in Egypt a self-fulfilling prophecy.

GOP Feeding Frenzy

They smell blood in the water and are getting excited.

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin took a minute Wednesday to counter an earlier claim by Rick Santorum that she might be skipping the annual Conservative Political Action Conference this week because she had more lucrative options on the table.
While she prefaced her comments with the disclaimer that earlier reports about the former Pennsylvania senator's statement may have been slightly overblown, as Santorum himself contended, that didn't stop Palin from getting in a jab. The former vice-presidential candidate said she wouldn't call Santorum "the knuckle-dragging neanderthal that perhaps others would want to call him, I'll let his wife call him that."
She's just so presidential.

Mubarak Expected To Step Down

MSNBC has been covering Egypt nonstop on news that sources expect Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to step down tonight. No one knows what the reaction of millions in the streets will be if the named successor is not to their liking, namely recently appointed Vice President Omar Suleiman.

According to the ticker, NBC is reporting that Mubarak will indeed step down tonight, tanks and razor wire are being used to secure Mubarak's palace, the military council says Mubarak is to meet the protestors' demands and are stepping in to "safeguard" the country.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Chris Lee Resigns

Here's why.

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, February 9, 2010 
Statement from Congressman Chris Lee (NY-26) 
"It has been a tremendous honor to serve the people of Western New York. I regret the harm that my actions have caused my family, my staff and my constituents. I deeply and sincerely apologize to them all. I have made profound mistakes and I promise to work as hard as I can to seek their forgiveness. 
"The challenges we face in Western New York and across the country are too serious for me to allow this distraction to continue, and so I am announcing that I have resigned my seat in Congress effective immediately."

We'll Do It Live


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Patriot Act Extension Fails! - UPDATED

Breaking News:

The vote was 277-148. With a two-thirds vote necessary, 290 votes were needed to pass the legislation. Welcome, Tea Party, to the fractured GOP. More to follow.

UPDATE (2/9/11): From Raw Story:

The House voted 277 to 148 for the PATRIOT Act extension... short of the two-thirds majority needed to pass it under a procedure that allows bills that aren't controversial to pass quickly.
But it appears the bill was controversial enough to convince some two dozen tea party-backed Republican freshmen to join a majority of Democrats in voting against it, The Hill reported.
Now here's the bad news.
The measure is now expected to return to the House floor for a regular vote that would require a simple majority to pass. If House members vote then as they did Tuesday, the extension will pass easily.

O'Donnell and Fineman's O'Reilly Interview Analysis

Lawrence O'Donnell broke down the amount of times Bill O'Reilly interrupted the President during his Super Bowl Sunday interview. Forty three times in a fourteen minute interview. Wow. He and Fineman then analyze what O'Reilly was after - the interview of the century, only he never let Obama finish a sentence.

Perhaps O'Reilly's been watching Chris Matthews on Hardball too much.

We can be so dumb


When I want a smart, consistent, unbiased resource on the health reform law, I go to Kaiser Family Foundation's site. They did this study on what Americans know and don't know about the law. I am rather speechless and all I can muster is: "oh, brother."

The Extended Obama/O'Reilly Interview - UPDATED

Here's the rest of the interview aired on The O'Reilly Factor Monday night that we didn't see on Sunday.

Besides the continuing interruptions that I mentioned in an earlier post, I found something very intriguing. Toward the end of the second clip, O'Reilly asks what the media can do better, and gets lost in the Obama's "professorial" style.  He doesn't want a real answer or a real solution apparently, you know, too much substance for Bill confuses him. But then O'Reilly specifically asks, "Do you think you're being treated fairly by Fox News now?" (4:10 mark). President Obama's answer was, "I would say, I think that the news guys try to do a good job...".

 Is it my conspiratorial mind running away with me, or does the video show a very poor job of trying to edit out the "try to" part of the statement and make it sound like Obama said, "I think that the news guys do a good job."

The very first thing that came to mind was the same type of horrible editing during Michelle Obama's "really proud of my country" moment. Since this is a video uploaded to YouTube and not from the official Fox News website, I'll reserve judgement.  But I can't help wondering if they just can't help themselves over at FNC to just tinker with video that is available for editing, unlike the live portion on Super Bowl Sunday.

(I'll replace the YouTube video with official FNC video when it becomes available and update my analysis.)

UPDATE: Conspiracy debunked! In the official video, now posted above, there is no glitch at the 4:10 mark of the second segment. So my apologies to the dweebs in the Fox News control room for accusing them of fudging with the video. You can see the YouTube glitch here. That is, if it is actually a glitch upon upload, bad initial video that was uploaded, or a purposeful attempt at changing the intent of the comment.

Quote of the Day

"Now, right now businesses across this country are proving that America can compete. Caterpillar's opening a new plant to build excavators in Texas that used to be shipped from Japan. In Tennessee, Whirlpool is opening their first new U.S. factory in more than a decade. Dow is building a new plant in Michigan to manufacture batteries for electric vehicles. A company called Geomagic, a software maker, decided to close down its overseas centers in China and Europe and move their R&D here, to the United States.
These companies are bringing jobs back to our shores. And that's good for everybody.
So if I've got one message, my message is: Now is the time to invest in America. Now is the time to invest in America."

~ President Obama in a speech to the Chamber of Commerce.
The rabid right is calling this another push towards socialism. But think about it for a minute. The President is appealing to the businessmen in this country, the so called job creators that the right espouses, to get their shit together and start creating those jobs they hold over us as their secret weapon. Yet, after record profits and sitting on billions in cash, employment is still stagnant when there should be more movement. We're not even close to a break even pace. Time for the job creators to put up or shut up.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Not a Good Ad


So, in the let's be civil and responsible atmosphere of the post-Tuscon shooting era, this Facebook ad is a major FAIL. By the way, if you click on the link, you'll see a weird page that offers not just a free copy of Human Action by Ludwig von Mises, but also a lot of great information about gold from First National Bullion and coin. WACKO!

Oh, Grow Up!


I just watched Joan Rivers on Lawrence O'Donnell (no link as of yet) and I will paraphrase it this way:

I think Obama needs to "get to work"; not go to Nantucket while telling Americans to go to the Gulf Coast; while in a recession not send your wife and her forty friends to Europe; I hate the "death tax."
OK, although some of that is fair criticism (the Obamas COULD have vacationed in Louisiana but there are reasons pro and con for that debate), some of Joan's criticism is incorrect and catty (the forty friends in Europe for example). She said she voted for Obama but her rant sounded almost like Fox talking points to me.

When she said she is against the "death tax" I knew she was a victim of right-wing spin. She went down the "I worked hard for my money" path. And that, aside from sounding like a Fox guest, made her sound like the biggest bitch (which is a totally appropriate term for a woman who made a career using that word) in stretched skin. Let me see: she thinks she worked so hard for her millions and wants her daughter to get it all and she's mad that her daughter will have to pay too much in taxes. Is that right? Well, hmmm... if JOAN worked hard for the money then you can't say Melissa worked hard for the money simply by being her daughter. If you think freedom from taxes is correlated to work exerted, then estate taxes aren't the car you should be chasing because the worker is dead and the recipient just sat there inheriting money.

Now, early in Joan's career she did work hard. And I am sure she puts hours into her current career. But excuuuuussse me, but earning millions while insulting clothes and hair does not, in my opinion, equal hard work that should be free of any taxes when given to her daughter -- who did even less hard work while doing the same lame-ass job simply because she's your kid.

You make millions of dollars, spend a huge chunk of that on your face and then you want to whine to me that your no-talent daughter has to pay taxes on the chunk you've left her? Hey, Joan: GROW UP.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Here's the video.

Serve Your Full Term, Please


Unless you are an elected official running for another elected post, or unless you are appointed to another position by someone in an elected post, I think it's pure crap to QUIT a job you were elected to do. And no, I am not talking about the Half-the-Term/Double-the-Standards Governor.

For Representative Jane Harman (D-CA) to leave Congress to work for a think tank is unacceptable to me. I don't care what party she is in, how she leans or whether I agree with her on issues or not. I do not like that people donate to campaigns only to see the money wasted on a partial term. I do not like that a state has to now fund and coordinate a special election -- especially when the state is broke. The least she could do is wait until another election is taking place. Or hell, she could afford to pay for the special election SHE is causing. If I could write laws, I would say that anyone who chooses to leave an elected office to get a better paying job must pay for the special election and refund a prorated amount to all the donors who helped get them elected.

Just sayin'.

EDIT: I meant to add:

"Hell, Gabby Giffords is still serving and she got shot in the head! THAT is loyalty and dedication and service."

The Obama/O'Reilly Super Bowl Interview

Maybe it's because of my Bill O'Reilly bias, but when did it become acceptable to ask a question of the President of the United States, and then constantly interrupt him during his answer? To me, it just shows O'Reilly has a subconscious disrespect for the office and for Obama in particular.

O'Reilly also comes off as an unserious "journalist" when he uses phrases like, "Those are tough guys, the Muslim Brotherhood" and "Mubarak knows a lot of bad things about us, rendition and such... I'm worried that he might go off the reservation." Yes, heaven forbid the American people might find out the truth of the criminal activities the government has been involved in.

"Does it disturb you that so many people hate you?" Not at all a serious question considering the President's 50% approval rating at the moment. Yes, even higher than St.Ronnie's rating at the same point in his tenure. Maybe the people who watch BillO hate Obama, but 2 million people does not a country make. And flailing and missing with a question about whether the President knows football and what a blitz is, as if he were going to catch him floundering and show Joe Average Football that Obama is an elitist who'd rather play cricket or polo than know the rules of American Football, was just pathetic.

What Obama should have said: "Yes Bill, I know what a blitz is. I also know what causes the tides."

Green Bay Packers Win Super Bowl XLV

Congratulations to the Green Bay Packers winning Super Bowl XLV, defeating the Pittsburgh Steelers 31-25 in an exciting game. While the Steelers made a valiant comeback after a couple of turnovers leading to 14 points, Pittsburgh's 18 point deficit was too much to overcome.