U.S. Politics

Late Night Roundup

Prop 8: Court Won’t Force Schwarzenegger, Brown To Defend Gay Marriage..
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A California court has refused to order Gov. Arnold Schwa..

Right-wing media shamefully try to pin Discovery Channel bomber’..
The right-wing media have shamefully attempted to tie James Lee, who created a hosta..

Where are they now? Serial Iraq misinformers find home at Fox
During the run-up to the Iraq war, some of the worst purveyors of misinformation abo..

Pence’s Defense Of Bush Tax Cuts For The Rich: ‘C’mon, We Know W..
A favorite Republican talking point lately is that the businesses are not creating

Pawlenty Likens Federal Government To A Drug Dealer, Implies Minnesota..
Outgoing Minnesota governor and potential Republican presidential candidate Tim Pawl..

DOJ Sues Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio For Refusing To Cooperate With Civ..
Today, the Department of Justice (DOJ) sued Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio, accusing his..

Undocumented immigration on the wane
Again, facts get in the way of scary wingnut hate rhetoric . The number of illegal i..

The false ‘liberal overreach’ narrative
Adam Serwer of the American Prospect is guest blogging on The Plum Line this week. M..

Boxer on Fiorina: She fights for billionaires and corporations that ou..
Click here to view this media (h/t Heather) The first (and likely only) debate betwe..

Fox News · Fox News Distortions

Megyn Kelly and Monica Crowley Pretend The Right Does Not Call Obama A Socialist Or A Muslim

This is another case of “don’t believe your own eyes and ears, believe Fox News.”

News Hounds

Methinks Megyn Kelly and Monica Crowley protested just a tad too much Wednesday (9/1/10) in their sneering, condescending attacks on Newsweek for having the audacity to highlight the untrue, inflammatory attacks against President Obama, such as calling him a Muslim, a socialist, etc. Kelly and Crowley tried to pretend that Newsweek had overblown “mainstream” criticisms of Obama in order to defend him and attack the right. As Kelly valiantly, and with unintentional humor, accused Newsweek of not making a distinction between someone calling Obama’s policies socialist and calling him a socialist (as if Fox News pundits make that distinction), she and Crowley turned a blind eye to the mountain of instances right there on their own network where the accusation was made either directly or indirectly.

Just one day after Crowley had gratuitously thrown in a jab about Obama’s “socialist policies” during a stint with O’Reilly, she now whined that Newsweek had been “incredibly dishonest… (They) took some of the more EXTREME examples to paint the opposition to this president.” She went on to argue that Newsweek had painted “with this very broad brush to delegitimize the widespread and mainstream opposition to this president and what he is doing… It’s incredibly dishonest… They know that they’re being dishonest.”

Kelly said disdainfully that Newsweek characterized anyone who criticizes Obama as “somebody who believes he’s a Muslim and a terrorist-lover and a warmonger at the same time.” As if to specifically defend Crowley and other Fox News peeps, Kelly added, “Some believe his policies are socialist… I think there’s a distinction between (calling him a socialist) and saying some of his policies seem socialistic which doesn’t seem like an extreme view to have.”

Well, maybe not but Kelly and Crowley have a little dishonesty of their own to answer for. Surely they know that the attacks never make that distinction, at least not on Fox News. For example:

Fox News regular Brigitte Gabriel suggested that Obama is a Muslim on Hannity, without any significant challenge from the host. That’s Fox News prime time, just a few weeks ago. Anybody want to bet that Gabriel will be back and treated like a credible pundit again?

Fox News regular Dick Morris called Obama “a European socialist” in July, 2008. Morris has been on Fox News countless of times since then as a regular political analyst.

Sean Hannity, himself, “asked” whether Obama is a “European socialist” that same month.

How many times has Fox News host Glenn Beck posted a photo of Chairman Mao when talking about Obama?

In fact, Kelly, herself defended those who call Obama a socialist in a debate with Alan Colmes last April. Kelly said then that calling Obama a socialist is a shorthand way of saying, “Government is butting its way in too many aspects of our lives” and blamed Obama for his “spreading the wealth around” comments. Kelly also “asked” at the time whether inflammatory comments made by Tea Partiers were “inflaming” or “validating“ “feelings that are already there.”

So which is it, ladies? Is Obama a radical socialist or will you denounce those who say so? Your attempts to have it both ways just won’t fly.

Glenn Beck · Glenn Beck Delusions

White House Defends Obama As ‘Mainstream Christian’ After Glenn Beck’s Accusations

Why does the White House feel the need to address anything Glenn Beck has to say?  It only validates the silly little warlock.

Huffington Post

WASHINGTON — White House spokesman Robert Gibbs says President Barack Obama is a “committed, mainstream Christian” – contrary to the claims of Fox News Channel host Glenn Beck.

Beck recently claimed that Obama practices a version of Christianity that is not recognized by most people. Beck says this “liberation theology” is all about “oppressors” and “victims.”

Gibbs was asked about Beck’s assertions Thursday at the White House press briefing.

Gibbs says, “I can only imagine where Mr. Beck conjured that from.”

Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin Slams ‘Impotent,’ ‘Limp’ Reporters (Audio)

Oh my!  Somebody has made Sister Sarah whip out her bag of sexual innuendo tongue lashing to spank reporters for “being bad little boys and girls”.   I wonder did she have on black leather when she made the comment?  (Ok I’m being naughty, but not as naughty as Sister Sarah!)

Huffington Post

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has taken her attacks on the media below the belt with a new line of criticism bashing “impotent” and “limp” reporters.

Palin made the comments on Sean Hannity’s radio program Wednesday, the same day that a very robust and unfriendly — if not somewhat questionably sourced — Vanity Fair profile was released online.

“I hear there’s some pretty ugly stuff coming out right now,” Palin said, not mentioning any report in particular, but explaining the “whack” coverage as a reaction to recent victories, perhaps referring to Joe Miller’s Senate primary win in Alaska.

“Those who are impotent and limp and gutless and they go on their anonymous — sources that are anonymous — and impotent, limp and gutless reporters take anonymous sources and cite them as being factual references,” Palin continued. “It just slays me because it’s so absolutely clear what the state of yellow journalism is today that they would take these anonymous sources as fact.”

With this kind of rhetoric, maybe Sarah Palin is looking to substitute her patented “lame stream media” for a more anatomical jab at the “weak stream media.”

Gulf Coast Oil Spill

Oil Platform Explodes In The Gulf Of Mexico Off The Louisiana Coast

It’s not as though that region hasn’t had enough disaster, now this…

Huffington Post

NEW ORLEANS, La. — The Coast Guard is saying there are no immediate signs of a spill from an oil platform fire in the Gulf of Mexico off the Louisiana coast.

All 13 crew members were rescued from the water in the second such disaster in the Gulf in less than five months.

The Coast Guard initially reported an oil sheen a mile long and 100 feet wide had begun to spread from the site of the fire, about 200 miles west of the site of BP’s massive spill. But officials said at a Thursday afternoon news conference that boats at the platform have not seen any oil sheen.


AZ Gov. Jan Brewer Struggles To Recall Her Accomplishments

Well, that’s easy…because she hasn’t done much of anything except harass undocumented and documented workers in her state.

Think Progress

Last night was the first, and possibly only, debate between candidates for Arizona governor, and it got off to a rough start for Gov. Jan Brewer (R), who struggled twice to remember her accomplishments during her opening statement. Politico writes:

Brewer, who has gained national notoriety for signing into law the country’s toughest provisions for illegal immigrants, awkwardly paused twice during the opening statement of the Clean Elections Debate broadcast on the state’s PBS affiliate. […]

[A]fter saying, “We have cut the budget, we have balanced the budget and we are moving forward. We have done everything that we could possibly do,” the governor paused for 10 seconds — an eternity in a live televised debate — before looking down at her notes.


This debate was required by the Arizona Clean elections law. Brewer’s Democratic opponent, Attorney General Terry Goddard, has challenged Brewer to six more debates. For some reason, she has yet to accept

UPDATE:   Afterwards, Arizona reporters attempted to ask Brewer why she would not retract her false claim during the debate that illegal immigrants conduct beheadings in the Arizona desert. Brewer had her third awkward silence of the night, and walked away without answering.      Watch it:


Immigration · Immigration Reform

Immigration flares up in state races

It seems like some folks didn’t get the memo…


It’s not just Arizona.

In states far from the Mexico border – from liberal Massachusetts to moderate Iowa – Democrats and Republicans in gubernatorial races are running on strict anti-immigrant platforms, pledging to sign an array of tough enforcement measures into law come January

Of the 37 gubernatorial races this year, candidates in more than 20 states have endorsed adopting a strict Arizona-style immigration law, passing legislation that makes it harder for illegal immigrants to live, work and access basic public benefits in their states, according to a POLITICO analysis.

The prevalence of the issue means the Obama administration could find itself battling Arizona-style flare-ups in statehouses across the country, raising pressure on the White House and Congress to break the deadlock in Washington over comprehensive immigration reform.

The Justice Department sued Arizona in hopes of discouraging other states from following its lead, and won a ruling blocking provisions of the law that immigration advocates found most objectionable. But that hasn’t stopped some gubernatorial candidates from trying to one-up each other on the issue.

Georgia Democratic nominee Roy Barnes endorses an Arizona-style law for the state, saying he would sign similar legislation if elected. So does Georgia’s Republican nominee, former U.S. Rep. Nathan Deal, a staunch critic of comprehensive immigration reform who used the first ad of his primary campaign to endorse the crackdown.

“If President Obama sued us too, we’re going to defend ourselves,” said Brian Robinson, communications director for Deal. “We’ve got to protect Georgia taxpayers if President Obama won’t.”

Alabama Republican Robert Bentley, who holds a double-digit lead over his Democratic challenger, vows to create “an environment that is unwelcoming to illegal immigrants.” He drafted a 10-point plan for what he describes as one of the most pressing problems facing the state, where the Pew Center found the immigrant population has at least doubled since 2005.

And in Massachusetts, Republican Charles Baker and independent Thomas Cahill battle for the toughest-on-immigration title, while Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick takes hits from immigration advocates for not being “proactive” enough.

The flood of get-tough statements could be just that – campaign talk that fades against the hard realities of governing and legal threats by the Justice Department. The outcome of an U.S. appeals court hearing set for early November on the Arizona law is most likely to determine whether the state-level push stalls out or gains momentum.

But polls show voters want the government to stop the flow of illegal immigrants. And with Congress unlikely to act any time soon, gubernatorial candidates are arguing that, as chief executives, they will try to do the job that they say the federal government has neglected.

The political pull can be fierce. At least three Republicans who initially expressed concern with the Arizona law walked back their opposition after taking heat from their party.   Continue reading… 

Wall Street

CEO Crybabies

A commenter from this Newsweek article says it all:

And thus we are hoodwinked. These obscenely rich individuals can game the system to take more the pie for themselves. How the rich managed to convince the rest of us that we should defer to their interests is beyond me. Looks like America bought that trickle-down BS


Corporate bosses are whining, even though they’re reporting record profits.

It’s hard out there for a CEO. There’s a Democrat in the White House, and Washington is being ruled by a coalition of socialists and anticapitalist thugs. There’s uncertainty about taxes and policy. Business leaders are constantly being vilified for taking home huge paychecks without providing meaningful returns to shareholders, or creating jobs, or boosting wages. The newly passed financial-reform bill requires CEOs of public companies to measure and report the ratio of their pay to that of their workers. Blackstone Group CEO Stephen Schwarzman is complaining that the Obama administration is like Hitler invading Poland.

With government and the media making life so difficult for CEOs, it must be nearly impossible to turn a profit. Right? Um, not really.

The headline number from the quarterly GDP report released by the Commerce Department last Friday was the sorry 1.6 percent growth rate of the economy in the second quarter. But the release also provided detailed data on corporate profits. And while the GDP number was disappointing, the latter was impressive. Corporate profits, which stood at $1.5 trillion in 2007, fell sharply to $1.26 trillion and essentially stagnated in 2009. But since the Obama presidency started, the trajectory in quarterly profits has reversed. Quarterly profits (reported at an annualized rate) rose from $1.18 trillion in the second quarter of 2009 to $1.42 trillion in the fourth quarter of 2009 to $1.64 trillion in the second quarter of 2010. In the second quarter of 2010, corporate profits were up 39.2 percent from the year-before quarter.    

Corporate profits aren’t just rising in absolute terms, they’re rising in relative terms. Corporate profits as a percentage of GDP are back up to nearly record highs. Check out this assemblage of quarterly GDP data for the last several years. If you divide line 17 (corporate profits with inventory and capital-consumption adjustments) into line 1 (overall GDP), you can calculate corporate profits as a percentage of GDP—i.e., the chunk of the economy that corporations are keeping as profits. If companies and business were under assault, you might expect that this proportion would be falling. But as the chart here shows, that’s not what is happening.   Continue reading…

Islamophobia · Uncategorized

Maddow: Islamic Center Opponents Could Be Stoking Anti-Muslim Attacks

Huffington Post 

Rachel Maddow said that the opposition to the proposed Islamic center near Ground Zero could be the reason behind a wave of anti-Muslim incidents around the country. 

On her MSNBC show Monday, Maddow ran down a list of the many different anti-Muslim attacks that have taken place in recent weeks — from the possible arson at a mosque in Tennessee to the stabbing of a Muslim cabdriver in New York to protests against mosques in states around America. 

She said that it was not possible to tie the incidents together in any concrete pattern, but speculated that the fierce opposition to the center near Ground Zero may have unleashed a wave of anti-Muslim sentiment across the country: 

“Maybe the tie between them is the opponents, who claim to be against the Park51 center near the World Trade Center site solely as a matter of real estate…maybe the thing that ties them altogether is them…if it’s only about the specific location of that one Islamic center, then how come we’re not hearing anything from them at all about all about the other mosques being shot up and protested? Are Temecula and Fresno also just too darn close to Ground Zero?”


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