Month: January 2010

The POTUS – A Play By Play @ Georgetown v Duke

This has been one spectacular week for the POTUS.  First, he gives a really good State of the Union address. 

Then he goes to FL and has a town hall meeting that went pretty well.  

Thirdly, he had a Q&A (unscripted and no teleprompter) with the GOP at their retreat in MD, and blows everyone away with his knowledge and ability to recall numbers and facts. 

 Finally, on Saturday the POTUS attended the Georgetown v Duke basketball game and actually spent a few minutes in the announcers’ booth, and once again, the spectators, the announcers, the refs all went “ga-ga” in awe of our POTUS.

Couple that with the announcement by by Former French President Jacques Chirac that former President George W. Bush:

Incredibly, President George W. Bush told French President Jacques Chirac in early 2003 that Iraq must be invaded to thwart Gog and Magog, the Bible’s satanic agents of the Apocalypse.

Well, those who voted for Barack Obama  can now remember and appreciate WHY you voted for the current POTUS.  The last one was batshit crazy!

Great Guest Post By “Democratista”!

Over the weeks before Christmas, I found myself totally absorbed by the “debate” on health care reform bill in the Senate. Debate is not what I watched at all. As a matter of fact, one would not know that the Democrats and Republicans were speaking about the same bill. The Democrats tended to read stories from their various constituents who went through extreme financial and emotional pain, including preventable deaths, and pushing toward getting as many people as covered as possible, claiming this bill would do just that.

The Republicans railed on about cuts to Medicare and “killing grandma” and taxes, taxes, taxes. It was nothing different than any other “debate” between these two parties. You would have real difficulty understanding what was in the bill and the amount of legal jargon and references to other sections make it incredibly difficult to understand even if you do read the actual legislation.

Then something happened which totally changed my focus. I live in MA, which I laughingly called “the Socialist Republic of Massachusetts”, and all of a sudden I started seeing tons and tons of signs and people for Scott Brown. We all know what happened there. I gave up. I totally gave up. I didn’t watch any news or care a lick about what the pols were saying. I got to know my State Rep over the course of the special election, and if I was going to care about politics, it was going to be local only.

I admit I am one of those dems who didn’t pick up a phone and work on the Coakley campaign until the last week. I made sure to stress to everyone I knew who probably wasn’t interesting in voting, who thought it was a shoe-in, who hadn’t been paying attention, that they had better go vote if they wanted the seat to remain in Democratic control. I made sure all three of my sons voted, one via absentee, one driving home from school and one still home.  It was for naught.

 And then January 29, 2010 I got a bucket of ice water dropped on me. President Obama went to the Republican retreat. He spoke and answered questions and all of a sudden my brain turned on and reminded me WHY I voted for this man and that giving up is not an option. I “enjoyed” the State of the Union, but I wasn’t moved to think there was much hope.

Friday was different. I don’t for one second believe the President will change the minds of the wing nut brigade, even though he did mention his healthcare plan was not some Bolshevik plot (loved that), but I think he got a new chance with Independent minded people and he certainly energized the base from what I observed.

Heck….MSNBC is running the thing over and over and I have watched it as it happened and dissected by MSNBC since the original airing. I’m so lucky I was tuned into CNN on-line and heard this start. I could go to C-SPAN and watch and eat my lunch. The timing was perfect. Now don’t get my wrong. I don’t all of a sudden believe that gridlock is going to magically disappear from the Congress, ESPECIALLY the Senate, but I have HOPE that if the President keeps working in this way that he can maybe, maybe get enough support to move some of the more reasonable legislators to support some of his ideas and maybe even acknowledge that some of their proposal actually have been heard and incorporated in legislation. If the rational people can “out scream” the wing nuts, we may just be able to make some progress. I’m not convinced, for sure, but I have HOPE again and it’s a lot better feeling than the despair I was experiencing. I just pray it’s not an illusion.

Republicans Shocked and Dismayed At POTUS’ Performance

House Republicans couldn’t wait to have a Q&A with President Obama, two days after the State Of The Union address.

Think Progress:

House Republicans were fired up and ready to go for their conversation with President Obama at their annual retreat today. According to the New York Times, members of the conservative Republican House Conference said they were “itching to quiz the president and present their policy ideas rather than listen to another lofty presidential address.” Although such sessions generally occur behind closed doors, Republicans agreed to open it up after the White House said it was willing to do so. However, after Obama’s strong performance, some Republicans are now regretting that decision. As Luke Russert reported on MSNBC:

RUSSERT: Tom Cole — former head of the NRCC, congressman from Oklahoma — said, “He scored many points. He did really well.” Barack Obama, for an hour and a half, was able to refute every single Republican talking point used against him on the major issues of the day. In essence, it was almost like a debate where he was front and center for the majority of it. … One Republican said to me, off the record, behind closed doors: “It was a mistake that we allowed the cameras to roll like that. We should not have done that.”

  “Accepting the invitation to speak at the House GOP retreat may turn out to be the smartest decision the White House has made in months,” writes the Atlantic’s Marc Ambinder. “Debating a law professor is kind of foolish — the Republican House Caucus has managed to turn Obama’s weakness — his penchant for nuance — into a strength. Plenty of Republicans asked good and probing questions, but Mike Pence, among others, found their arguments simply demolished by the president.”

Blog Round Up

 

  

TPM: Alleged Phone Tamperer O’Keefe To Go On Hannity Monday Night. 

Joe.My.God: Maine Moving Forward With NOM Campaign Ethics Investigation. 

 RH Reality Check: ‘Personhood’ Sputtering in Colorado, Says Denver March for Life. 

 Washington Monthly: Hatch Threatens “War.” 

 Pam’s House Blend: Republican U.S. Rep Mike Pence: marriage equality will result in societal collapse. 

The Family Research Council is seeking signatures for a petition opposing efforts to end Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. 

Self-proclaimed King of the Tea Partiers Dick Armey tells Michael Steele that he has to gain their trust by proving his bona fides on fiscal issues. 

Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s PAC took in $1.3 million in its first few months. 

Rep. Michele Bachmann has $1 million in the bank for her re-election bid. 

Religious Right activists are holding a prayer vigil outside of CBS headquarters in support of Focus on the Family’s anti-choice Super Bowl ad. 

Finally, will Sarah Palin still be attending the National Tea Party Convention, even though all the other political leaders have dropped out?  You betcha.

H/T Right Wing Watch

We Don’t Quit, I don’t Quit!

  

 

Last night I recorded The President’s SOTU address along with MSNBC’s comments on my DVR.  Today, I finally saw the speech. 

The speech, as far as an overall view, was pretty good.  In fact, VERY good.   It appears The President wanted to bring a change in tone with regard to politics in Washington, D.C.  (sigh) Good luck with that Mr. President. 

The Right (GOP) feel they have a winning stratergy  with their “just say no” policies.  They are not about to backtrack now, in an election year.   However, it appeared that The President dared the GOP to join him and his party in getting America back on her feet.  It aint gonna happen, Mr. President

This is a mid-term election year and they are going to “stay the course” with their scorched earth policy of NO, regardless of the damage done by their action!  Perhaps to their detriment or perhaps to their benefit.  Whatever the outcome of this tactic by the GOP, November 2010 will reveal the folly or the wisdom of their decision.

Still, I believe most of the country understood the POTUS’ dillemma and support his efforts:

TPM:

A CBS instant poll after last night’s speech found that 83 percent of speech watchers liked President Obama’s proposals and 70 percent said Obama shares their priorities for the country, up from 57 percent before the speech. Forty-eight percent of speech watchers in a CNN poll had a very positive response to the speech while 30 percent had a somewhat positive response.

The end of the speech had me standing up and cheering!  The words were extremely powerful: 

We don’t quit. I don’t quit. Let’s seize this moment, to start anew, to carry the dream forward, and to strengthen our union once more.

Phoney ACORN “Video Guy” Arrested For Breaking Into Sen. Landrieu’s Office

Remember the guy that made the videos at ACORN, alleging misconduct, pimping, etc?   Well, as karma would have it, James O’Keefe has been arrested along with three other people for breaking into and attempting to wiretap, Lousiana Senator Mary Landrieu’s downtown New orleans office. 

The Atlantic: 

James O’Keefe, the conservative filmmaker who posed as a pimp in video stings at ACORN field offices, has been arrested by the FBI at Sen. Mary Landrieu’s (D-LA) office in downtown New Orleans, in connection to what appears to be an attempt to wiretap the offiice, NOLA.com reports:

FBI Special Agent Steven Rayes alleges that O’Keefe aided and abetted two others, Joseph Basel and Robert Flanagan, who dressed up as employees of a telephone company and attempted to interfere with the office’s telephone system.

A fourth person, Stan Dai, was accused of aiding and abetting Basel and Flanagan. All four were charged with entering fedral property under false pretenses with the intent of committing a felony.

O’Keefe gained notoriety for his secretly filmed ACORN videos, which caused a firestorm of media intrigue surrounding ACORN after O’Keefe posted them on the Andrew-Brietbart-owned blog Big Government last year.

SC Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer : “Don’t feed the poor. They’ll ‘breed.'” FULL AUDIO

Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer was almost Governor of South Carolina when Gov. Mark Sanford disappeared for a week to go to Argentina to see his mistress.  Thankfully, Bauer did not take the reins of the governorship at that time.   I often wonder about Republican politicians who claim a monopoly on Christianity yet say and do the most un-Christian things:

  “My grandmother was not a highly educated woman, but she told me as a small child to quit feeding stray animals. You know why? Because they breed,” Bauer said, as quoted at the South Carolina State. “You’re facilitating the problem if you give an animal or a person ample food supply. They will reproduce, especially ones that don’t think too much further than that. And so what you’ve got to do is you’ve got to curtail that type of behavior. They don’t know any better.”

Raw Story:

That drew immediate condemnation from the head of South Carolina’s Democratic Party.

“Andre Bauer’s crude utterances once again reveal his immaturity and poor judgment,” said Carol Fowler, according to WIS-TV in Columbia. “Bauer is a bachelor who has never once had to worry about feeding a child of his own. His notion of punishing children by not feeding them because their parents missed a PTA meeting flies in the face of basic South Carolina values.”

Bauer told CNN Monday that he regretted using the stray animals metaphor.

“I wish I had used a different metaphor,” Bauer said. “I never intended to tie people to animals.”

But then the lieutenant-governor made another animal comparison. “If you have a cat, if you take it in your house and feed it and love it, what happens when you go out of town?” he asked, adding that he is “not against animals.”

Bauer has repeatedly returned to the animal metaphor in his defense of Friday’s remarks. At a gubernatorial forum on Saturday, he denied he was making the link at all.

“There’s no way that I was trying to tie animals to people,” he said. “What I was trying to talk about is the dependency culture, and just like when you feed an animal, you create a dependency.”

Here’s the audio:

GOP Senator Lies – Shocking! (Not!)

 

Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) lied on ABC’s This Week by saying he “did not want health care to be Obama’s waterloo”.  What’s up with the GOP representatives who continue to lie and deny things they have said?  I mean this is the 21st Century.  The Information Age.  We have a record of virtually every word any Congressman or Senator has ever spoken.

I believe it is about scoring political points at the moment.  Then go back and deny you said it after the message has the done the damage required.  It reeks of Cheneyism and Roveism.

Think Progress:

Last summer during the peak of the health care reform debate in Congress, Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) claimed that if Republicans are “able to stop” President Obama’s push for health care reform, “it will be his Waterloo.” “It will break him,” DeMint said.

Today, during an interview with DeMint on ABC’s This Week, host Terry Moran aired audio of the quote and asked if it was appropriate to call for breaking the president. DeMint responded by lying, issuing an outright denial that he ever made the statement:

MORAN: So did you break him? And is that really how Americans want you to behave here in Washington, break the president? […]

DEMINT: I did not want this to be the President’s Waterloo. But pushing through a massive government take over of our health care system was certainly not a good idea. … We’ve been as Republicans pushing health care reform for years.

Later in the segment, Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) called DeMint out:

MENENDEZ: Well Terry, my good friend Jim DeMint did want to break Barack Obama and the Republican whole political strategy is for this president and this Congress to fail. The sad thing about that it’s not about Barack Obama failing or Democrats in Congress failing, it’s about the country failing at one of the most critical challenges the country has had.

Of course Menendez is right. The GOP strategy on health care has simply been to obstruct, delay, and kill reform.

Back in September, DeMint was proud of his “Waterloo” comment. “If we lose the health care battle, I think we’ve lost it all,” he said, adding, “And that’s why I’ve said strong things like Waterloo and other things. … [I]f we stop him on health care then I think we have the opportunity to maybe realign the whole political system in our country.”

Air America Radio Shuts Down Operations

 

 

Air America Radio has shut its doors.   The radio network that brought us Al Franken and Rachel Maddow will be filing bankruptcy under chapter 7.

Air America Media:

It is with the greatest regret, on behalf of our Board, that we must announce that Air America Media is ceasing its live programming operations as of this afternoon, and that the Company will file soon under Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code to carry out an orderly winding-down of the business.

The very difficult economic environment has had a significant impact on Air America’s business. This past year has seen a “perfect storm” in the media industry generally. National and local advertising revenues have fallen drastically, causing many media companies nationwide to fold or seek bankruptcy protection. From large to small, recent bankruptcies like Citadel Broadcasting and closures like that of the industry’s long-time trade publication Radio and Records have signaled that these are very difficult and rapidly changing times.

[...]

When Air America Radio launched in April, 2004 with already-known personalities like Al Franken and then-unknown future stars like Rachel Maddow, it was the only full-time progressive voice in the mainstream broadcast media world. At a critical time in our nation’s history — when dissent on issues such as the Iraq war were often denounced as “un-American” — Air America and its talented team helped millions of Americans remember the importance of compelling discussion about the most pivotal events and decisions of our generation.   More…