Saturday, October 30, 2010

Music Break! Ben Folds & Nick Hornby

From Above

Must Reads

Ryan Kearney: A Guide to the Misguided Criticism of the Stewart/Colbert Rally

Robert Wright: Islamophobia and Homophobia

Bob Cesca: When in Doubt, They Beat Up Women

Stephen C. Rose: President Barack Obama - Things He Did when No One was Looking

Paul Krugman: Divided We Fail

Nicholas D. Kristof: Give Obama a Break

President Obama's Weekly Address - October 30, 2010

Working Together on the Economy

Friday, October 29, 2010

S#*! Sarah Palin Says (Reading Comprehension Edition)

This one is an instant classic.

Tea Party mama grizzly Sarah Palin had an issue with Secretary of State spokesman PJ Crowley's tweets today.

Apparently, the Tea Party darling has absolutely no idea of the definition of sarcasm, as the Thrilla from Wasilla was responding to this:

Crowley posted two short messages directed at the Iranian president, who turned 54 this week.
"Happy birthday President Ahmadinejad," the first tweet reads. "Celebrate by sending Josh Fattal and Shane Bauer home. What a gift that would be."
The second tweets reads: "Your 54th year was full of lost opportunities. Hope in your 55th year you will open Iran to a different relationship with the world."
Anyone with half a brain would understand that the opening salvo of the "birthday message" was a set up to nail the point home that Iran and Ahmadinejad should release the American hikers arrested near the border in 2009 and charged with espionage. But Sarah just doesn't get it. She thinks the Obama administration was basically sending him a birthday card.  What a bonehead.

ADDING... If you check out blogs and comments on this story, it's amazing to me how many people are defending her and think that the Crowley tweets are actual messages to Ahmadinejad and this is how we're conducting foreign policy.  I fear for the collective intelligence of our country.

How Did I Miss THIS!!!

Posted by JHW22

This is exactly the kind of thing that makes my day. So how did I miss it?

Voter Intimidation at Micky D's

Why does this shit always happen in Ohio? Why are they always the troubled state when it comes to elections?

The owner of a franchise in Canton, Ohio enclosed a handbill in employees' paychecks that threatened lower wages and benefits if Republicans don't win on Tuesday...
..."The handbill endorses candidates who have in essence pledged to roll back the minimum wage and eviscerate the safety net that protects the most vulnerable members of our workforce," said Attorney Allen Schulman of Canton law firm Schulman Zimmerman & Associates, which received the documents from an employer who stepped forward. "But it's more than that. When a corporation like McDonald's intimidates its employees into voting a specific way, it violates both state and federal election law..."
The owner of the McDonald's franchise, Paul Siegfried, called it "an error in judgment" and apologized to "those that I have offended...". It's not about offending anyone, douchebag, it's about breaking the law.

Don't expect the wingnuts to go crazy over this.  They're too worried about the ACORN scam du jour even though they've been out of business since April after being framed by Breitbart and accomplices. Registering voters is evil, but intimidating minimum wage workers will go unnoticed in their bizarro world.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

I Am A Tea Partier


No Compromise

The next time some asshole conservative cries and whines that President Obama promised bipartisanship but hasn't delivered, don't explain to them that the GOP had a seat at the table and acted like children. Don't explain to them that 65 Republican amendments made the Health Care Reform bill they decided to vote against anyway. Don't explain to them that they continue to take credit for the stimulus money their districts received even though they voted against the stimulus.

Just show them this:

Then punch them in the throat.

(H/T Bob Cesca)

NJ Gov Christie Blows Another $350 Million

Governor Rejects Huge Rail Project Already In Progress - Must Repay Fed

I've recently moved to New Jersey and use the New Jersey Transit rail system five or six days a week to get to and from work. It's a pretty good system, I imagine no better or worse than any rail system in the US, subjected to occasional delays but for the most part, relatively reliable.  The one thing that is strange however, is that as the population has expanded to the suburbs and train ridership has increased over the course of years, the rail system hasn't been able to keep up.  There are only one pair of single track tunnels connecting New Jersey to Penn Station.  Those tracks are owned by Amtrak, and they have priority to let their trains pull in first, leaving NJ Transit trains sitting on the tracks waiting for permission to enter the station.

Well that was all going to change with a program called Access to the Region's Core (ARC), a "big dig" that would have created a new set of tracks below 34th Street and controlled by New Jersey Transit.  No waiting to get in. The project was estimated at $8.7 billion, $6 billion of which would have been provided by The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey  and the Federal Transportation Department. New Jersey would have to come up with the $2.7 billion balance. The project also would have provided 6,000 construction jobs and once the tunnel was completed, another estimated 40,000 jobs.

The project was underway, two decades in the planning, but was killed by Republican Governor Chris Christie when he looked into possible cost overruns he didn't want the citizens of New Jersey to be responsible for.  At a glance, it looks like a reasonable concern.  But dig deeper and you realize the partisan rhetoric and politicking that is going on.

Christie is the new GOP darling.  The no-nonsense, fiscal conservative who is slashing spending to get New Jersey in the black.  But if he truly cared about the citizens of his state, he would have been in his office trying to crunch the numbers to make this project work for the benefit of New Jersey Transit and its commuters instead of stumping for GOP candidates in Massachusetts, Connecticut,  Pennsylvania, and anywhere else (19 candidates to date) he can show his face to get name recognition for a possible 2012 run for the White House.

The fact is that $3 billion has been slated from the Port Authority of NY/NJ and another $3 billion from the Federal Transportation Department. So, less than the projected 1/3 of the money ($2.7 billion) would be coming from New Jersey. Even with projected cost overruns of $2 billion, New Jersey would still be footing less than 50% of the bill without even attempting to ask for Federal aid in the future for the project. Let alone the 6,000 construction jobs and the projected 40,000 jobs after completion that have been lost as Governor Nero has turned his thumb down to the project.

"I don’t want to hear about the jobs it will create. If I don’t have the money for the payroll," it will not create the jobs, Christie said. "This is not a difficult decision for me."
And if you want to talk about fiscal conservatism, Christie's cancellation of the project now puts New Jersey on the hook for $350 million we have to repay the federal government with absolutely nothing to show for it.  That combined with the Governor's boneheaded botching of the education grant, and Mr. Fiscal Responsibility as cost the state $750 million in his first 10 months.

But the fact of the matter is, Christie is just trying to make a name for himself; the new GOP governor pushing back against the big, bad federal government. It may play politically for Christie, but New Jersey residents will pay one way or the other. So far, they've paid to the tune of three quarters of a billion dollars for, apparently, nothing.

Heckuva job, Christie.

President Obama: The Daily Show Interview

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Barack Obama Pt. 1
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorRally to Restore Sanity

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Barack Obama Pt. 2
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorRally to Restore Sanity

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Barack Obama Pt. 3
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorRally to Restore Sanity

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Set Your DVRs!

President Obama is the guest for a full half hour of The Daily Show tonight. Check your local listings for time.

Meg Whitman Drowns in Boos at The Women's Conference...

... for failing to agree to a negative campaign ad stoppage with Jerry Brown.

(H/T Huffington Post)

WTF?! Stomper Wants Apology

Our What The Fuck?! moment of the day comes to us courtesy of the woman hating, head stomping, Don't Tread of Me But I'll Tread On You, former Rand Paul Bourbon county coordinator, Tim Profitt for wanting an apology from activist Lauren Valle for making him stomp on her head. You just can't make this shit up.
"I don't think it's that big of a deal," Profitt said. "I would like for her to apologize to me to be honest with you."
"She's a professional at what she does," Profitt added, "and I think when all the facts come out, I think people will see that she was the one that initiated the whole thing."
I wonder if Profitt wouldn't think it's that big of a deal if the shoe were on the other head? The idiot also blamed his bad back for the use of his foot-to-face action because he can't bend over, to which I ask, "Why would you get into a physical altercation with a woman, chase her around a car, and then after she's in a prone position for several seconds, being held down by another person, step on her head if your back is that bad?"

I really do hope more facts come out. Then we'll see who the real victim is.

Dedicated to Mr. Anonymous

Posted by JHW22

Since our loyal watcher, Mr. Anonymous, seems to enjoy the topic of hypocrisy, this post is for him.

I was watching Rachel Maddow interview Joe "Constitution Ninja" Miller regarding the very Constitution he so ardently defends and protects and seems to know better than anyone else (because he's a lawyer or because he's a Conservative -- I'm not sure which is more qualifying these days).

MADDOW: Do you think there should be a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage?
MILLER: That’s up to the people. You’ve got a three-quarters vote, ratified, I’d vote for it.
MADDOW: You would vote for it?
MILLER: Yeah, I would. But it would require an amendment to the Constitution.
Now, I am no Constitutional scholar, attorney, or Conservative (who appear to be the only people who are allowed to comment on the Constitution these days) but I am pretty sure there is some inherent hypocrisy when Joe "Amendments are Bull Crap" Miller thinks stuff like this:
He called the idea of a living, changing Constitution “bullcrap,” and said he would support an amendment for term limits as well as an amendment repealing the 17th Amendment, which allows for the direct election of senators by the public rather than by state legislatures.
I am hoping Mr. Anonymous checks in and explains this contradiction in beliefs that it is okay to change the Constitution for some but not for others. You'd think that a staunch defender of the original writing of the Constitution, like Joe "Written in Cement" Miller would NOT want to alter it to limit the rights of some considering the original said something about securing "Blessings of Liberty" (but what's the significance of a preamble anyway, right?) Apparently, Joe "Except for You" Miller thinks it's okay to restrict the rights of teh gays via an amendment but I guess all the other amendments, written post-Founders, should be stripped or something?
I will be a catalyst to move those in Congress to make the tough, principled decisions needed to bring Washington back to the limited role anticipated by our Founders. We must act now.
I can totally see how banning marriage for 10%+ of the public is bringing back a limited role of government. It makes total sense -- in someone's alternate interpretation of the supposed document that is not living or open to anyone's interpretation but his.

I tend to agree with the man who wrote the Alaska State Constitution, Vic Fisher, when he said:
I would think a Yale Law School graduate would understand that a Constitution is a framework -- a foundation for the future.
In some ways, Joe "Keeping it Real" Miller thinks that the document is living and is adaptable depending on the mood of the country. In other ways he thinks it's meant to be stuck in the day when not everyone had a say in how that document could be adapted. Therein lies the hypocrisy. I do hope Mr. Anonymous will shed some light on this issue. I hope he uses original thought, however. I'd hate to read the same talking points I could find by a simple Google search.

Juan Williams is Me

Posted by JHW22

Now, we all know that Juan Williams wasn't fired for his people in Muslim garb scare me line. He was fired because he consistently speaks his opinion rather than unbiased analysis. Although I don't think his comment was fire-able on its own, it's how his statement plays into the larger discourse in America, particularly the right-wing fright fest against Muslims, that was the problem. Added to many other moments teetering on that fine line between integrity and something else, he deserved the boot in NPR's eyes. (Although, to be fair, you can search him on Media Matters and see the many times he has defended the Obama administration.)

But let me demonstrate why I see the point he was making about judging a book by its cover: I am afraid of people wearing "Don't Tread on Me" garb.

Now, this fear of mine has been around for a while. Perhaps it's because I am terrified of snakes. Perhaps it's because I assume (yes, I know about the whole ass out of me thing) that the majority of people with that yellow snake symbol are most likely carrying a concealed handgun -- at least in my state. And frankly, the "Don't Tread on Me" gang are consistently telling Americans how angry they are.

Snake + Guns + Anger = Scary

That's the truth. They scare me.

So on the first day of voting in Texas, a woman was asked to either remove her "Don't Tread on Me" button or return to vote on another day without it. She stomped her foot and acted as if she weren't allowed to vote when she DECIDED to leave the polling location. She CHOSE to leave then called the media. Oh, you can Google it and see all kinds of blogs posting the same story (word for word because they don't write anything original) saying she was "denied her right to vote". And you will see comments about the Black Panthers and the new conspiracy that Michelle Obama was electioneering when she voted.

This woman said she didn't wear the button to make a political statement as she then proceeded to tell the reporter how absolutely horrible the government is (I have searched high and low for the footage I saw but I can't find it. All I can find is the same damn story copy and pasted all over the intertubes and it's to frickin' late (or should I say early) to keep looking for it.). Yep. She ranted about the government but swears that yellow button with a snake on it and the "Don't Tread on Me" message wasn't meant to be political.

Now, this woman and others in the Tea Party claim the Gadsden Flag, the Tea Party, and unicorns are not parties or party symbols so the button should not be considered electioneering... But I'm guessing that button is more than a Betty Boop or Hello, Kitty type of fashion statement. Never mind that the Republican Attorney General for the State of Texas has the Gadsden Flag in his reelection campaign materials.

I told my husband that night that the reason for no propaganda rules like that is to prevent intimidation. I find it ironic that a group of people who found two "scary" black men STANDING outside a polling location in a black district were there to "intimidate" people into voting for a black man -- or something like that. Yes, one of the black men had a billy club but from what I could tell, he was pretty nice despite the annoying white kid bugging him with a video camera. Yet the "Don't Tread on Me" gang can't understand that maybe a tiny gal like me would be somewhat intimated by a person wearing a "Don't Tread on Me" button in a state that allows people to carry concealed weapons.

Snake + Guns + Anger = Scary

And let's not forget what yellow means. It means caution.

So I was shocked, but in some way justified in my fears, when a man with a yellow "Don't Tread on Me" button held a woman down while another man stomped on her head. That woman, who looks just like me, was doing the very damn thing "Don't Treaders" fight for -- using her first amendment right in all its glory.

The man who stood on her head said he "was concerned about Rand's safety". So I guess a couple of men twice her size should be allowed to man-handle a tiny woman to protect a man already out of harm's way because they are, um, concerned? Yet, when liberals went crazy over men carrying guns to Obama rallies, we were silly. I guess a tiny gal is far more menacing than a man with a "Don't Tread on Me" button or a semi-automatic rifle.

So today, Juan Williams is me. I admit my fear is based on irrational assumptions of strangers. Yep. I admit it. The difference is that the "Don't Tread on Me" gang aren't members of a minority race or religion. The people Juan Williams is afraid of are already on everyone's suspicion list and simply because of people like Juan Williams.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tweet of the Day

Cartoon of the Day

Monday, October 25, 2010

McConnell: GOP Has No Plan For You


McConnell: "The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president."

Absolutely. No. Shame.

And there you have it. Complete admission that if the GOP regains control of both the House and the Senate, they will continue their plan to stop legislation dead in its tracks so they can say during the 2012 campaign that nothing got done under a Democratic President. And to add to it, they'll most likely start investigations into every aspect of the Obama administration for no particular reason other than avoid doing actual work.

The World Is Watching

Yesterday, I recommended Frank Rich's latest column on my Facebook page. While pointing out that the Obama administration has not gotten the credit it deserves for its accomplishments, Rich also makes a case for the lack of enthusiasm the administration has had for pursuing the Wall Street crooks who almost collapsed the global economy, or lack of cohesive White House messaging to the point of being blamed for the bank bailouts even though they happened before Obama took office. We also know the difficulty they've had in touting their accomplishments, or at least touting so that people will listen.

Well a friend of mine, a native German currently living in Munich, read the Rich piece and sent me a message:

I'm hoping so badly for your country that the voters will keep their faith and their hope in real change as they did when they initially voted for Obama. I can only assure everyone that the outside reputation of your nation has improved by several hundred percent. Don't throw all that away! President Obama said from the start that it wouldn't be an easy task and he was right, wasn't he? Note that real chang takes time. Please be faithful and more patient. And know that many, many other nations (including mine) would be more than glad to have a leadership that works so hard for the benefit of its people instead of corporate and private interests.

Thank, Al, for helping us keep perspective. I hope that that mindset pervades the voters who are thinking of staying home on November 2nd, because they've lost that overall viewpoint.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

An Oldie But A Goodie

Product placement is everything.