Friday Open Thread

Good Morning, Everyone :)

It’s Friday…YEAH!!

So, come on in, and comment while you visit.

first couple most popular pic on twitter

From …gasp..Politico:

Obamas on marriage and that picture
By DONOVAN SLACK |
12/26/12 10:01 AM EST

President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama say that humor, love and respect have kept their marriage together.

“We’ve been married now 20 years, and like every marriage, I think, you have your ups and you have your downs,” the president said in an interview with Barbara Walters. “But if you’ve worked through the tough times, the respect and love that you feel deepens.”

“And then there’s a lot of laughter,” Michelle Obama added.

The president said that everyone thinks his wife is the funny one, but, he said, “I’m funnier than people think.”

“I am,” he insisted.

The interview with Walters was taped December 11 and had been scheduled to air earlier this month but was pushed back after the Newtown shootings. It is now set to air Wednesday during ABC News’ “Nightline.”

Walters also asked the couple about the photo of them hugging that became the most shared picture of all time on Twitter.

It was taken on the campaign trail in Iowa.

“I hadn’t seen him in a while,” Michelle Obama explained. “You know, when you’re campaigning, they have, we’re two ships passing in the night, and the first time I saw him was when I walked on stage to greet him. And that’s my honey giving me a hug.”

“I like giving you hugs,” the president added.

 

hat tip-The Obama Diary:

And here’s their interview with Barbara Walters

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106 Responses to Friday Open Thread

  1. Pingback: Afternoon Open Thread - Jack & Jill Politics

  2. Ametia says:

    LOOKIE HERE MITCH MCCONNELL!

    Unemployment benefits for two million Americans are set to expire this year. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) refuses to allow a vote on the extension because he wants to see the benefits coupled with the extension of tax cuts for the rich as well as certain spending cuts.

    Last month, the Democratic staff of the House Ways and Means Committee released a report looking at how many Americans would lose their benefits if they unemployment insurance was not extended. According to their research, as many as 24,000 Kentuckians will lose their benefits this week because of McConnell’s obstruction.

    The state’s unemployment rate remains a very high 8.2 percent, and there simply aren’t enough jobs for everyone who is unemployed.

    https://boldprogressives.org/24000-kentuckians-set-to-lose-unemployment-benefits-because-of-mitch-mcconnells-obstruction/

    Like

    • Ametia says:

      30,000 Tennesseans will lose unemployment benefits without fiscal cliff deal

      By Duane Marsteller / The Tennessean

      About 30,000 Tennesseans will lose their unemployment benefits when a federal program ends next week, state labor officials said Friday.

      A possible extension of those benefits is one of the many topics that are part of the negotiations in Washington over the so-called “fiscal cliff,” a combination of tax changes and spending cuts that are set to take effect in 2013.

      Thousands of Tennesseans are receiving extended unemployment benefits under the federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation program, which is set to expire on Wednesday. The program pays benefits to those who have exhausted their state benefits, which can last up to 26 weeks in Tennessee.

      This week is the last payable week under the federal program, with final checks going out next week. After that, jobless benefits will be capped at 26 weeks in Tennessee.

      Although the federal program has been amended or extended 10 times since it was enacted in 2008, neither Congress nor the Obama administration have moved to continue it.

      Karla Davis, Tennessee’s labor commissioner, urged those losing their benefits to use the state’s jobs website (www.jobs4tn.gov) and visit a state career center for help finding work

      http://www.wbir.com/news/article/247199/2/30000-Tennesseans-will-lose-unemployment-benefits-without-fiscal-cliff-deal

      Like

    • Ametia says:

      NEWS FLASH CONGRESS:
      Do your MOFO jobs and stop ccreating all this drama over a job you should have been doing all along. You’re not doing anything special for Americans that any other congress wouldn’t and didn’t do before you and the TEABAGGERS lost your fucking minds over the the BLACK POTUS in the WHITE HOUSE.

      Like

  3. President Obama Discusses Last-ditch Efforts to Avert the Fiscal Cliff

    Like

  4. EXCLUSIVE: President Obama Meets the Press this Sunday http://nbcnews.to/YV8QQN

    Like

  5. Obama to Congress: Come to a deal – or else http://tpm.ly/U73wFi

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  6. Betsy Fischer Martin‏@BetsyMTP

    As reported just now on our @nbcnews special: President Obama will sit down exclusively with @davidgregory for @meetthepress this Sunday!

    Like

  7. Potus just shut down a reporter… shut the fuck up while I’m talking.

    Wham! Bam! Kapow!

    Like

  8. Live video: President Obama to discuss the ongoing ‘fiscal cliff’ negotiations

    http://bit.ly/UzFOPE

    Like

  9. Perfect SAT score for Cameron Clarke, Germantown Academy senior in Philadelphia.

    Cameron Clarke, 18, a Germantown Academy senior, is one of 360 students nationwide…

    http://articles.philly.com/2012-12-18/news/35871335_1_student-government-cross-country-perfect-sat-score

    _____________________

    That’s what I’m talking ’bout! Go Cameron!

    Like

  10. Ametia says:

    Dedicated to FLOTUS c/o 3 Chics from PBO

    Like

  11. President Obama to speak on the Fiscal Cliff at 5:45pm EST

    Like

  12. Here is the real life D’Jango.1858, His name was Dangerfield Newby and he was a member of the John Brown party . He joined to save his wife and children, Harriet. Their love story was real and you all should check out their love letters.

    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dangerfield_Newby

    Django

    Like

  13. Colin Tom‏@ReporterPhoenix

    Woman gang-raped on bus in Delhi has died, hospital treating her in Singapore says – @BBCBreakinghttp://bit.ly/UyCeJR via @breakingnews

    Like

  14. Ametia says:

    John Kerry, Vicki Kennedy, DSCC support Ed Markey for Senate
    Posted by Rachel Weiner on December 28, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    The Democratic establishment inside and outside Massachusetts is quickly lining up behind Rep. Ed Markey (D) in the likely special election for Sen. John Kerry’s seat.
    Kerry himself is supporting the longtime House member; so is the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, and Vicky Kennedy, the widow of the late Sen. Edward Kennedy.
    “While I began last week to formally step out of politics, and it’s very important that I respect the apolitical nature of the post I hope to soon occupy, as Massachusetts’ senior senator today and as a colleague of Ed Markey’s for 28 years, I’m excited to learn of and support his decision to run for the United States Senate,” Kerry said in a statement. ”Ed’s one of the most experienced and capable legislators in the entire Congress and it would be an almost unprecedented occasion for such an accomplished legislator to join the Senate able to hit the ground running on every issue of importance to Massachusetts.”

    Kennedy quickly chimed in. “I believe that Congressman Ed Markey is the best person to continue in the tradition of John Kerry,” she said. “He will be a superb senator for Massachusetts.” Some Democrats were hoping Kennedy herself would run.
    Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) followed with a statement as chairman of the DSCC, calling Markey “exactly the kind of leader Massachusetts needs in the U.S. Senate.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-politics/wp/2012/12/28/john-kerry-supports-ed-markey-for-senate/?wpisrc=nl_pmpolitics

    Like

  15. rikyrah says:

    Obamacare’s Stick On Medicaid About To Get Real In 2013

    Friday, December 28, 2012 |
    Posted by Deaniac83 at 12:06 PM

    Everyone is all fiscal cliff all the time this days, and there are plenty of rumors going around in the news media for everyone to blather over. But the fiscal cliff isn’t the only thing happening on January 1.

    Next year, some important provisions of the Affordable Care Act take effect, most of them meant to prepare for full scale implementation the following year, 2014. In nine Republican controlled states, their governors have refused to agree to the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion, which would cover anyone under 133% of poverty under Medicaid. Their politics dictate that they refuse Obamacare’s expansion, but their practicalities may soon intrude with that politics. That’s what I want to talk about today.

    You see, there are at least two sticks to make these intransigent governors and legislators swallow the medicine of Medicaid inside other provisions of Obamacare. The first, and the most potent is a little known provision that will provide new federal dollar to match Medicaid’s physician and other medical reimbursement rates to that of Medicare. From a Kaiser report on the subject,

    To help ensure sufficient access in Medicaid as enrollment increases, the health reform law requires states to raise their Medicaid fees to Medicare levels at least, for family physicians, internists, and pediatricians for many primary care services. Physicians in both fee‐for‐service and managed care environments will get the enhanced rates. The primary care fee increase, which applies in 2013 and 2014, is fully federally funded up to the difference between a state’s Medicaid fees in effect on July 1, 2009 and Medicare fees in 2013 and 2014.
    Why is this important? Because doctors who see Medicaid patients are currently so poorly compensated that a study found that in 2011, nearly a third of doctors would not accept new Medicaid patients. In contrast, more than 80% of doctors would accept new Medicare patients. Why the disparity between Medicaid and Medicare patients? Well, that might be explained by the following map from the previously cited Kaiser study:

    http://www.thepeoplesview.net/2012/12/obamacares-stick-on-medicaid-about-to.html

    Like

  16. Ametia says:

    Obama Inaugural Ball Public Ticketing Announced
    By: Hillary Crosley | Posted: December 28, 2012 at 2:21 PM

    As January approaches and many begin to prepare their inauguration plans, the White House has announced that public tickets will be made available for the two inaugural balls that will be held on Jan. 21. Tickets will be priced at $60, and those interested can sign up for an email alert here.

    http://www.theroot.com/buzz/inaugural-ball-public-ticketing-announced

    Like

  17. rikyrah says:

    Why Republicans have a lot to gain from reaching out to African Americans

    Posted by Jamelle Bouie on December 28, 2012 at 11:41 am

    For all the focus on Latinos as the deciding voters in last month’s election, the fact of the matter is that Mitt Romney could have won while losing a decisive share of the Latino vote— in the states that decided the election, Latinos were a small share of the electorate. If there is a single demographic group that doomed Mitt Romney’s chances, it’s African Americans. High black support and turnout for President Obama provided the margin of victory in Ohio, Virginia and Florida, and bolstered Obama’s totals in states such as Pennsylvania and Michigan.

    Indeed, a new survey from the Pew Research Center shows that — for the second election in a row — African Americans voted at a higher rate than any other minority group and may have, for the first time in history, voted at a higher rate than whites. To wit, according to the Census Bureau, blacks were 12 percent of eligible voters this year but accounted for 13 percent of those who voted in the presidential election. By contrast, Latinos accounted for 10 percent of the electorate and Asian Americans 3 percent, several points lower than their share of the population. In other words, their political clout is, to some degree, a factor of population growth.

    It’s worth noting that black turnout has been on an upward swing for 20 years. Just under 60 percent of eligible African Americans voted in the 1992 election. The percentage dropped to just under 55 in 1996, in line with the broader drop off in turnout that year, but it climbed rapidly over the next decade. In 2008, 65.2 percent of eligible blacks voted in the election, compared to 66.1 percent of whites, 49.9 percent of Latinos and 47 percent of Asian Americans.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2012/12/28/why-republicans-have-a-lot-to-gain-from-reaching-out-to-african-americans/

    Like

  18. rikyrah says:

    The GOP’s new mascot: the Cheshire cat

    While it’s fun to wargame potential coalitions between House Democrats and their yet-pathologized Republican counterparts, eventually reality intervenes and insists on re-terrorizing us. This, for example, from Cook Political Report, via Politico:

    [J]ust six Republicans–around 3 percent of the House GOP Conference–will occupy districts whose overall voter makeup favors Democrats. That figure is down from 22 Republicans that resided in such Democrat-friendly districts in 2012

    Perhaps the most relentless reality-distorter in our wargaming amusements is the varying headcount of the Tea Party and Tea Party-aligned caucus within the 113th Congress’s House Republican conference. Observers routinely cite anywhere from 50 to 80 of these yokels–they’ll be the problem, we hear; they’ll be the ones so disagreeably haunting all of John Boehner’s moderate dreams–yet the actual number is closer to 227 (233 minus the above six). The reason for such realistic yokel-inflation is simple: “Establishment” Republicans who fear Tea Party primary challengers will vote as de facto Tea Partiers.

    And that, further, is why some formal schism–either an institutional split between the Republican Party and the Tea Party, or the Tea Party-cum-GOP versus an inchoate Conservative Party–is essential to conservatism’s survival. As long as congressional Republicans at large are subject to the narrow, fanatically pseudoconservative whims of a Tea Party primary base, they cannot vote as traditional Republicans might and thus the party will, in time, Cheshire-like, swallow itself whole.

    http://pmcarpenter.blogs.com/p_m_carpenters_commentary/

    Like

  19. rikyrah says:

    Bernanke’s subtle hints to Congress

    By Steve Benen
    Fri Dec 28, 2012 12:10 PM EST

    Traditionally, when the economy isn’t where it needs to be, policymakers have pushed for various forms of stimulus — the right has preferred monetary stimulus from the Fed, while the left has preferred fiscal stimulus from Congress. When the economy is in especially dire straits, ideally we’d see both efforts simultaneously.

    In 2012, that’s a problem. As the Republican Party has moved sharply to the right, it now opposes monetary and fiscal stimulus, abandoning what was conventional thought among conservatives for decades. But as Matthew O’Brien explains, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, himself a Republican, still wishes GOP policymakers would wake up and smell the need for fiscal intervention.

    It might not look like it, but forecasting sub-2 percent inflation nowadays is the Fed’s way of begging Congress to borrow more. That’s the big implication of the Fed’s big policy moves the past few months. The Fed is already buying $85 billion of bonds a month on an open-ended basis and has promised not to raise rates before unemployment falls below 6.5 percent or inflation rises above 2.5 percent. But it still thinks inflation will remain subdued, despite its bond-buying.

    In other words, the Fed is telling us it will tolerate a bit more inflation, but it won’t create it. That’s as good an invitation as Congress is going to get to cut taxes or increase spending, at least until inflation is around 2.5 percent

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2012/12/28/16215200-bernankes-subtle-hints-to-congress?lite

    Like

  20. rikyrah says:

    Michigan towns reading fine print of new emergency manager law. (Heads up, Detroit.)

    By Laura Conaway
    Fri Dec 28, 2012 11:40 AM EST

    Michigan voters repealed their state’s emergency manager in November, only to have Governor Rick Snyder sign a new version of it yesterday. From the first reports out of Michigan it wasn’t clear how the law, which takes effect in March, would affect Detroit. That city’s finances are now under state review, with the real possibility that Michigan will take it over with a weaker emergency financial manager. But with the new law on the way, would a manager appointed by the state now get amped-up powers come March? Could that manager, for example, cancel union contracts?

    The answer’s in: Heck, yeah. What’s more, even though the new law lets cities vote out an emergency manager, they can’t do it for a year and a half. That means Detroit, along with towns already under emergency management, will be stuck without meaning local democracies for a long while more. From the Detroit News:

    Nathaniel Elem, an Ecorse city councilman, was hoping the law would allow the Downriver community to get rid of Emergency Financial Manager Joyce Parker.

    “We ought to be able to vote her out now, instead of waiting 18 months,” Elem said Thursday. “I think it sucks, to tell you the truth

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2012/12/28/16213807-michigan-towns-reading-fine-print-of-new-emergency-manager-law-heads-up-detroit?lite

    Like

  21. rikyrah says:

    Buried in Their Own Bullsh*t

    by BooMan
    Fri Dec 28th, 2012 at 10:18:52 AM EST

    As Politico correctly points out, there is a logic behind the Republicans’ intransigent behavior. What’s missing from their analysis, however, is any mention of the fact that the Republicans’ created this logic themselves. It is true that gerrymandered districts have created a situation where the vast majority of House members have more to fear from a primary than from a general election against the opposing party, which makes it extremely painful to compromise with the other side. But the problem has been exacerbated by the unhinged rhetoric the Republicans used to demonize the president and his policies.
    On Friday, Jan. 29, 2010, the president warned about this during his appearance at the House Republican retreat in Baltimore, Maryland. In responding to a question from Tennessee backbencher Marsha Blackburn, the president made the following observations in the context of the ongoing health care debate:

    Now, you may not agree with Bob Dole and Howard Baker, and, certainly you don’t agree with Tom Daschle on much, but that’s not a radical bunch. But if you were to listen to the debate and, frankly, how some of you went after this bill, you’d think that this thing was some Bolshevik plot. No, I mean, that’s how you guys — (applause) — that’s how you guys presented it.
    And so I’m thinking to myself, well, how is it that a plan that is pretty centrist — no, look, I mean, I’m just saying, I know you guys disagree, but if you look at the facts of this bill, most independent observers would say this is actually what many Republicans — is similar to what many Republicans proposed to Bill Clinton when he was doing his debate on health care.

    So all I’m saying is, we’ve got to close the gap a little bit between the rhetoric and the reality. I’m not suggesting that we’re going to agree on everything, whether it’s on health care or energy or what have you, but if the way these issues are being presented by the Republicans is that this is some wild-eyed plot to impose huge government in every aspect of our lives, what happens is you guys then don’t have a lot of room to negotiate with me.

    I mean, the fact of the matter is, is that many of you, if you voted with the administration on something, are politically vulnerable in your own base, in your own party. You’ve given yourselves very little room to work in a bipartisan fashion because what you’ve been telling your constituents is, this guy is doing all kinds of crazy stuff that’s going to destroy America.

    And I would just say that we have to think about tone. It’s not just on your side, by the way — it’s on our side, as well. This is part of what’s happened in our politics, where we demonize the other side so much that when it comes to actually getting things done, it becomes tough to do

    Setting aside the superfluous and inaccurate both-sides-do-it-equally coda of that statement, the truth of his argument has never been more clear. The Republicans have painted themselves into a box. We are at the point, now, that the Speaker of the House does not have the ability to bring his caucus along to make any compromises on the budget. And the simplest explanation for this is that bullshit is responsible. The Republicans have fed their base so much bullshit that they’ve crippled themselves. They are now literally buried in their own bullshit. Bullshit about taxes and revenues, bullshit about climate change and the environment, bullshit about guns and ammunition, bullshit about socialism, bullshit about the character of the president, bullshit about immigration and terrorism.

    They did it to themselves. I’d like to lend them a hand and help them shovel their way out, but I don’t think they’ll let me help. One of the reasons that I think a deal is in the best interests of the country (depending on details, obviously) is that it is the best opportunity, and maybe the only opportunity, we have to dismantle this dungheap.

    http://www.boomantribune.com/story/2012/12/28/101852/18

    Like

  22. rikyrah says:

    The Broken American Polity

    Senator Ben Nelson said recently that many Republicans have yet to accept the presidential election of 2008, let alone the re-election of 2012. I see no real evidence to the contrary. Whether this is due to race, or culture, or fanaticism (they regarded Bill Clinton as illegitimate as well) I do not pretend to know. We know also, of course, that the corrupt gerrymandering of House districts allows those with power to rig the system so they can retain power – even when they have no broad public support. And we know that the whitest, rightest part of the Republican base controls the primaries and is determined to destroy any member of congress who votes against the religion of permanent insolvency – which is what “no-revenue-increases-ever” means as we near a demographic wave of older folks. What a perverse cause: a party dedicated above all to the permanent, chronic insolvency of the American government. The cuts they need without any new revenues would simply end the welfare state in America and would never be tolerated by the middle classes in practice. And tax reform will only get us so far.

    This, then, remains a country in a Cold Civil War – not far off the geographical contours of the first, but with the inheritors of the Confederacy concentrated in the South and now also with serious pockets of absolutists in the more rural parts of the country as a whole. Maybe it was precisely because Barack Obama campaigned against partisan polarization that the GOP has decided to ratchet it up. The rightwing media-industrial complex – from Limbaugh to Hannity to Drudge – earns money from conflict not compromise. And these lucrative media institutions have taken over from what’s left of the conservative intelligentsia (three decades ago a flourishing, growing and open group, now shrinking fast into calcified, partisan hacks).

    None of this is news to Dish readers. We’ve been covering this Republican meltdown for years. It feels like I’ve been watching it for much of my adult life. And it’s true that if they simply retain total unity and resist any compromise on anything, they can help destroy this country’s economy – and the world’s. The Constitution gives them that power, even though the founders warned precisely against the kind of purism and factionalism that now threatens the stability of the entire country. Since their ideology is all about creative destruction (“Il nous faut de l’audace, et encore de l’audace, et toujours de l’audace!” is the fanatic Bill Kristol’s rallying cry, proudly citing Georges Danton, a fellow revolutionary), what do they have to lose by wreaking havoc?

    We can hope that public opinion exerts its pressure. But when the popular will is exactly what the gerrymandering is supposed to inhibit, there are limits to controlling this rogue faction, refusing to accept the legitimacy of a re-elected president or the urgency of compromise for the sake of the country as a whole. All to protect the very wealthy and successful from providing an ounce of extra sacrifice in tackling the debt, even as they demand everyone else, especially the poor and vulnerable, take a hit.

    http://andrewsullivan.thedailybeast.com/2012/12/the-broken-american-polity.html

    Like

  23. Ametia says:

    Crazy white guys going CRAZY over the economy going over the cliff when they’re the CRAZY white guys who fucked over the economy

    Like

  24. rikyrah says:

    The Media Ignores Facts in Order to Push Republican Lies on Fiscal Cliff

    By: Sarah JonesDec. 28th, 2012

    The AP is assisting Republicans with their desperate meme that Democrats are to blame for the failure to avert the Fiscal Cliff that Republicans built with previous refusals to compromise.

    In an article this morning, the AP reported on Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer’s appearance on NBC’s Today show in which he said he was “encouraged that Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky is getting “actively engaged” in talks to resolve the problem.” Schumer told Today that a deal may be “closer than people think.”

    That’s a nice quote from someone who is trying to negotiate with the other side. No mention of the humiliating Republican failure in the House.

    But with what did the AP end their story? A Republican quote blaming Democrats.

    Yes, for real:

    Appearing on the same show Friday, Republican Sen. John Thune noted a meeting later Friday among President Barack Obama and congressional leaders, saying, “It’s encouraging that people are talking.”

    The South Dakota senator said, “I think in the end we will get a deal, but the question is the timing of that.”

    He also said the two sides are at stalemate because, quote, “Democrats haven’t been willing to discuss the issue of spending.”

    That’s helpful, eh? To end with this quote gives it a nice punch. They felt no need to offer their readers facts or context.

    Democrats haven’t been willing to discuss spending? First of all, Obama already cut spending by a trillion dollars (1.7 trillion if you count the interest) as a part of the Budget Control Act in 2011. In fact, discretionary spending levels will hit their lowest level as a share of GDP since the early 1960′s.

    So, Democrats were willing to discuss spending. They already discussed spending. In point of fact, in the last ten years, Democrats have consistently been more fiscally responsible than Republicans; e.g., the Obama Administration’s spending is the lowest since the Eisenhower Administration.

    http://www.politicususa.com/media-plays-republican-shell-game-fiscal-cliff-ignoring-math.html

    Like

  25. Ametia says:

    Seriously; a statesman?! GTFOH Phil Griffin

    MATTHEWS RAISES PROFILE DURING CAMPAIGN
    By DAVID BAUDER
    — Dec. 27 11:45 AM EST

    NEW YORK (AP) — To his boss, Chris Matthews has become a statesman. His critics probably have other words.

    The veteran MSNBC host raised his profile as much as any member of the television commentariat during the presidential campaign. His 5 p.m. “Hardball” show has seen viewership jump by 24 percent this year from 2011, 17 percent for the rerun two hours later.

    Matthews symbolized MSNBC’s growing comfort in being a liberal alternative to Fox News Channel. He engaged in an uncomfortable on-air confrontation with Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, seemed nearly apoplectic when President Barack Obama flubbed his first debate and had to apologize for appearing grateful that Hurricane Sandy might have helped Obama’s re-election effort.

    With Keith Olbermann out of sight, Matthews essentially replaced him as the commentator that most annoyed conservative viewers.

    http://bigstory.ap.org/article/matthews-raises-profile-during-campaign

    Like

  26. Rikyrah,

    The video of dad’s reaction to getting tickets for the game….6,387,243 views!

    It’s a good one! Folks love it!

    Like

  27. rikyrah says:

    India gang-rape victim ‘struggling’ to survive, hospital says

    An Indian gang-rape victim whose assault in New Delhi triggered nationwide protests earlier this month has suffered “significant brain injury” and is surviving against the odds, the Singapore hospital treating her said on Friday.

    The 23-year-old medical student, who was severely beaten, raped for almost an hour and thrown out of a moving bus in New Delhi, was airlifted to Singapore on Dec. 26 for specialist treatment.

    The patient is currently struggling against the odds, and fighting for her life,” Mount Elizabeth Hospital Chief Executive Officer Kelvin Loh said in a statement.

    “Our medical team’s investigations upon her arrival at the hospital yesterday showed that in addition to her prior cardiac arrest, she also had infection of her lungs and abdomen as well as significant brain injury.”

    The victim had already undergone three abdominal operations before arriving in Singapore, where her condition on Thursday was described as “extremely critical.”

    Demonstrations over the lack of safety for women erupted across India after the Dec. 16 attack on the unnamed victim, culminating last weekend in pitched battles between police and protesters in the heart of the capital.

    http://worldnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/12/28/16212322-india-gang-rape-victim-struggling-to-survive-hospital-says?lite

    Like

  28. Ametia says:

    From Jim Messina

    Looking back at the campaign, here are some moments that will always stay with me:

    — Registering our 1 millionth voter
    — When Obamacare was upheld and when “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” officially ended
    — The 4 millionth American donating to the campaign
    — The roaring cheers when our re-elected President said on Election Night: “The best is yet to come.”

    Check out this timeline, which highlights key steps toward our victory on Election Night, and then say you’re in for the challenges and victories to come:

    http://www.barackobama.com/our-journey?email=awareof411%40gmail.com&zip=55346&utm_medium=email&utm_source=obama&utm_content=httpmybarackobamacomOurJourney&utm_campaign=em12_20121228_jm_v3s1&source=em12_20121228_jm_v3s1

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  29. Danny Hafley, Kentucky Man, Defends Watermelon-Eating Obama Display: He ‘Might Get Hungry’

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/27/danny-hafley-kentucky-obama_n_2372920.html?utm_hp_ref=tw

    Danny Hafley of Casey County, Ky. said this week that people are reading the mannequin in his front yard depicting President Barack Obama eating a watermelon completely wrong.

    “The way I look at it, it’s freedom of speech,” Hafley told Lex 18 in a recent interview, going on to state that he had included the watermelon not in attempt to play to any racist stereotypes, but because the statue “might get hungry standing out here.”

    According to Hafley, the display is “popular” and a frequent draw for people passing by to stop and take pictures.

    Watermelon imagery has been utilized by anti-Obama efforts in the past, usually by those claiming there is no racist sentiment behind the choice.

    In 2009, a mayor of Los Alamitos, Calif. resigned his post after sending an e-mail showing watermelons in front of the White House, alongside the text “No Easter egg hunt this year.” He maintained that he wasn’t aware of the racial stereotype that African Americans like watermelon.

    Like

    • I loved this comment

      MitchellWiggs 9 hours ago

      Let’s take a look at where these two men are at in their lives. President Obama is the most powerful man in the world, and holds the absolute highest government position possible in the greatest country on Earth. He’s made history being the first black President in our nations history, and was just re-elected to a 2nd term. He is a Harvard law graduate, former college professor, and worth about what….$12 million dollars? This man lives in a trailer in Kentucky, in front of a hill. Case closed.

      ______________

      Wham! Bam! KaPow!

      I’ll be damned. Poor white trash living in a trailer trying to mock the most powerful man in America.

      Like

  30. Bharat Manghnani‏@bmangh

    Robert Reich (Cliff Hanger: Why Republicans Don’t Care What the Nation Thinks) http://robertreich.org/post/39020721747#.UN22ydWOcHA.twitter

    Like

  31. Hey Chics!

    Take a look at this article I ran across. Hmmm…

    John McCain and Hillary Clinton’s bipartisan bond
    McCain has largely spared Clinton from any criticism over the Benghazi assault. | Reuters

    http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1112/84297.html

    Sen. John McCain renewed his attacks on U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice on Tuesday, but he’s gone soft on Hillary.

    As she wraps up her tenure at Foggy Bottom and mulls over a possible 2016 White House bid, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s decade-old bipartisan friendship with McCain appears to have helped shield her from GOP fire — even as her agency finds itself in the thick of a partisan battle over Benghazi.

    Their deep bond and mutual respect was born out of eight years serving in the Senate together, their shared admiration for the military, numerous trips around the world to war zones, security conferences in Germany — they once even took in a sunset in the Arctic Circle.

    _________________

    I said many times over McCain and Hillary were in cohoots over his attacks on Susan Rice to take the heat off Hillary. What a disgusting witch!

    Like

    • Ametia says:

      No doubts here about this woman. HILLARY CLINTON WILL NEVER, EVER,GET MY VOTE

      Like

    • newcenturywoman says:

      I’m with you, SG2. I just don’t trust HRC! Even though I’ve always tried to be supportive of all of President Obama’s appointees, I cannot quite forgive or forget the racist shenanigans pulled by the Clinton campaign (especially Bill) during the 2008 presidential primaries. That said, this latest clandestine operation that ambushed Ambassador Rice kinda reminds me of what the Clinton camp did to thwart the appointment of Caroline Kennedy whom President Obama wanted to replace Hillary when he named her Secretary of State. It seems like our dear friend Hillary is a selfish, conniving, backstabbing beeotch who seems quite comfortable throwing wrenches into the fire against President Obama’s appointments and who always seem determined to not let any other woman steal her political thunder.

      Like

  32. rikyrah says:

    Mitt Romney was hesitant to reveal himself

    A Globe review finds many reasons for the presidential candidate’s failure, none greater than how slow he was to tell his own story
    By Michael Kranish | Globe Staff December 23, 2012

    excerpt:
    To this day, Romney’s aides wonder how it all went so wrong.

    They console each other with claims that the election was much closer than realized, saying that Romney would be president if roughly 370,000 people in swing states had voted differently. Romney himself blamed demographic shifts and Obama’s “gifts”: ­federal largesse targeted to Democratic constituencies.

    But a reconstruction by the Globe of how the campaign unfolded shows that Romney’s problems went deeper than is widely understood. His campaign made a series of costly financial, strategic, and political mistakes that, in retrospect, all but assured the candidate’s defeat, given the revolutionary turnout tactics and tactical smarts of President Obama’s operation.

    http://bostonglobe.com/news/nation/2012/12/23/the-story-behind-mitt-romney-loss-presidential-campaign-president-obama/OeZRabbooIw0z7QYAOyFFP/story.html

    Like

    • rikyrah says:

      to which I reply:

      this is not hard.

      I’m tired of these whiners. Let’s break it down .

      The GOP Primaries were a joke. A JOKE. They ran against amateurs and grifters, and even then, never presented an actual CASE as to why Willard should be President. They buried the GOP Clown Car with negative ads because they had more money. If just one of those grifters had actual solid financial footing, Willard never would have won.

      So, after running in that Primary, against that pathetic bunch, they actually thought that they were going to run that bullshyt on the Obama Team.

      You know the team that took down the Clintons in 2008 and got a BLACK MAN ELECTED PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES.

      Yes, that team.

      They thought, with their Citizens United Cabal, that they would just run all sorts of ads, and that would work with this President. But, you see, as usual, they couldn’t see the forest for the trees. They pretended that this President, and his entire family, hadn’t been the most disrespected President in history. They pretended that the rest of this country didn’t notice the race-based insults that had proliferated from the right from the moment Barack Obama came close to getting the Democratic Nomination in 2008. You know the saying that every cloud has silver lining – well, the lining in this case was that, there wasn’t shyt negative that Willard and the Citizens United Clown Car couldn’t unleash against the President that we hadn’t already heard in one way or another from the right wing since 2008. The only people those ads were going towards were the people who were never going to vote for the President in the first place.

      They mocked President Obama as a ‘ community organizer’. As folks pointed out the number of field offices that the President’s team was opening, and the volunteers, it was mocked by the GOP, and ignored by the MSM. They thought they wouldn’t need GOTV, because their Voter Suppression was supposed to work. They actually thought that they were going to take away the RIGHT TO VOTE FROM FIVE MILLION AMERICANS, and nobody was gonna fight that shyt. Rev. Al had a saying about this election:
      This isn’t Obama – it’s about your Mama.

      He was right in so many ways. It became less about President Obama, and even those that were on the fence about this President, weren’t on the fence about Big Mama, Daddy, Uncle Leroy, the Elders in the Church that they’ve known their entire lives. It couldn’t get more personal to have these assholes stand before cameras, saying that, of course, these laws were to stop people from voting. WE are the ones who were beaten, hozed, who had to tell the ‘ number of bubbles in a bar of soap’, and guess how many jelly beans in a jar. The reaction to James Crow, Esquire was VICERAL, and people were not playing with the GOP, or the MSM which didn’t report this story, save for a handful of people.

      They never ran a campaign – they lied about every damn thing. Steve Benen wrote FORTY-ONE fucking columns detailing Willard’s lies.

      FORTY-ONE!!!

      Willard Romney ran for President officially for 6 years, and to this day, nobody could tell me WHAT was his purpose for running. They could never tell me WHY he should be President – other than he was a rich White Man. THAT is all he offered, with his race-baiting campaign. They were gonna racebait the White folks out to vote, but never thought about the flip of that – that all the non-White people in this country that held their tongue as they silently watched and seethed at the insults towards this President. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction. I still say that the numbers that shocked the hell out of them were the votes for Latinos and Asians….they were oh so ready to tell Black folks that they ‘ imagined’ the insults towards The First Family, and that we should stop being so ‘sensitive’. When pretty much ALL the non-White folks saw the same damn thing, that shut them the fuck up. Willard was their Great White Hope, cause he surely had nothing else to offer, and watching all of them on election night have to choke on it, as the President won re-election handily just made them hurt all over. To see the man triumph after they had done everything they possibly could to put the fix in…they were beside themselves.

      Willard Romney and his entire clan, were nothing but a bunch of overprivileged, entitled group of assholes who thought that they were ENTITLED to be First Family. Not understanding that, even with our republic as broken as it’s been, one is ELECTED President by THE PEOPLE. So, him, ‘ our turn’ Miss Ann, that punk azz Tagg, who thought he could open his mouth about threatening our President, can go somewhere and sit down in one of their houses.

      Like

  33. Good post, Rikyrah!

    Like

    • Ametia says:

      The key takeaway right now: Republicans need to come back to Washington and work with the President and Senate leadership and stop holding the middle-class hostage. If Speaker Boehner doesn’t come to the table after his “Plan B” failure from within his own party, a $2,000 tax hike will hit middle-class families on January 1. The GOP would raise taxes on 97 percent of Americans just so the richest 2 percent can see a tax increase too.

      Like

  34. rikyrah says:

    As the GOP Burns Delusional Republicans Think They have Leverage Over Obama

    By: Jason EasleyDec. 27th, 2012

    Even though the GOP is crashing and burning on the fiscal cliff, Republican senators like Chuck Grassley believe they have leverage over Obama.

    Sen. Chuck Grassley provided a fine example of the Republican state of mind when he claimed to Newsmax that Republicans have leverage over Obama on the fiscal cliff.

    When asked about a solution to the fiscal cliff, Grassley answered, “If we do go over the cliff then the focus next year’s going to be on raising the debt ceiling and we’ve got a great deal of leverage on the president on raising the debt ceiling because we don’t have to raise it unless we’re going to get some reduction in expenditures.”

    Grassley thinks that the Republicans have the advantage on the fiscal cliff because of the debt ceiling. The Iowa senator thinks that Republicans can get the spending cuts they want by repeating the debacle on the debt ceiling that led to US debt being downgraded last year.

    In short, Republicans think they have leverage on the fiscal cliff, because they can use the debt ceiling to create more chaos next year. What they seem to be incapable of understanding is that their antics are destroying the Republican Party. Their behavior likely helped to win the president a second term by convincing a majority of voters that they didn’t want these people unchecked and making policy.

    http://www.politicususa.com/gop-burns-delusional-republicans-leverage-obama.html

    Like

  35. rikyrah says:

    The Republican Party Resolves to Destroy Middle Class Once and For All in 2013

    By: Becky SarwateDec. 27th, 2012

    Paul Krugman, the famed economist and Op-Ed columnist for The New York Times, has, in recent years, coined quite a few clever nicknames for hypocritical fiscal conservatives. And in referring to fiscal conservatives, he does not write of the dying breed of Republicans like Bob Dole, the former Senator, Presidential candidate and disabled war veteran who was humiliated in public by his own party earlier this month.

    Dole made a rare appearance in the Senate chamber several weeks ago in an attempt to promote passage of a seemingly benign U.N. Treaty, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Designed to improve access and mobility for the disabled across the globe, the treaty met with defeat from the crazed likes of political also-ran Rick Santorum, who decried the treaty on the catch-all Tea Party grounds that it posed a “direct assault on us and our family!”

    It’s enough to make you wonder if Dole asked Santa for a time machine this Christmas so he could venture back to 1996 and fall off the stage at that rally directly onto Santorum’s delusional, useless noggin. It’s frightening to consider that in 2013, nearly 20 years after his failed bid for the Oval Office, Dole would be considered an unelectable liberal radical within his party’s ranks.

    But I digress. When Paul Krugman writes of “deficit scolds,” “bond vigilantes,” and my personal favorite, “prophets of fiscal doom,” he refers to true charlatans like Congressman Paul Ryan, who wrote former President George W. Bush a budget-busting blank check for eight years, rubber stamping every unaffordable idea of which Dubya could dream, before suddenly putting on his serious monetary face the minute a Democratic President took the oath of office.

    For months, nay years, we have been hearing from Ryan and his ilk that failure to address our long term budget deficits presents dire consequences, an imminent collapse of American security and respectability at a minimum if not an outright nullification of our entire way of life. As we moved ever closer to the edge of the fiscal cliff, the caterwauling grew louder…until it became clear that there’s just no way that President Obama is going to go against public opinion and leave the Bush-era tax cuts intact wholesale.

    And just like that, the old fiscal cliff doesn’t seem so scary to GOP leadership. After all, when you come down to it, it’s not Ryan, Santorum or the one percent who will end up hurting if Congress blows past its 2012 deadline, right?

    http://www.politicususa.com/republican-party-resolves-destroy-middle-class-2013.html

    Like

  36. rikyrah says:

    Michelle Obama’s Best Outfits of 2012

    From official White House dinners to TV appearances, here are the top FLOTUS fashion moments.
    By: Keli Goff|Posted: December 27, 2012 at 12:06 AM

    http://www.theroot.com/views/michelle-obamas-best-outfits-2012?wpisrc=root_lightbox

    Like

  37. rikyrah says:

    In Michigan, democracy goes like this

    By Laura Conaway
    Thu Dec 27, 2012 12:41 PM EST

    On November 6, Michigan voters rejected their state’s emergency manager law. By a margin of 52 to 48, they repealed the statute that allowed Michigan state government to take over struggling towns with a single appointed overseer. That person can then uproot the local democracy, firing elected officials, canceling union contracts, selling off the town’s assets and even moving to dissolve the town itself. The day after voters repealed that law, Governor Rick Snyder signaled that he was ready to pass a new one.

    Today, he signed it. The press release from his office includes this:

    This legislation demonstrates that we clearly heard, recognized and respected the will of the voters,” Snyder said.

    Michigan’s new emergency manager law does give towns more choices about the deal with being broken, though until some of them go through the process, there’s no way to know if those choices are really just “choices.” The new law also opens the possibility for the town firing the emergency manager after a year. And the new law is much harder for citizens to repeal than the old one, because Republicans including spending in the measure — much the way they wrote spending into the anti-union legislation passed earlier this month.

    Michigan Republicans are trying to push the replacement emergency manager law as more democratic, so long as that democracy doesn’t extend to citizens voting it down.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2012/12/27/16192030-in-michigan-democracy-goes-like-this?lite

    Like

  38. rikyrah says:

    Starbucks’ grande confusion over the fiscal cliff

    Posted by Suzy Khimm on December 27, 2012 at 11:13 am

    Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz has become the latest corporate executive to take to a soapbox on the “fiscal cliff” as part of Maya MacGuineas’s Fix the Debt coalition. His open letter asking his baristas to write “Come together” on their D.C. customers’ cups has launched a thousand quips on Twitter. But beneath Schultz’s anodyne message lies a central confusion as to what the fiscal cliff is about in the first place.

    “As many of you know, our elected officials in Washington D.C. have been unable to come together and compromise to solve the tremendously important, time-sensitive issue to fix the national debt. You can learn more about this impending crisis at http://www.fixthedebt.org,” Schultz wrote in an open letter to his employees.

    Reading this alone, you’d get the impression that the real, time-sensitive danger that we’re facing is a debt crisis. It isn’t. The “impending crisis” that Schultz is referring to is just the opposite, as Wonkblog has explained in our admittedly futile campaign to rebrand the fiscal cliff as an “austerity crisis”—a sharp, sudden fiscal contraction that requires some measure of stimulus (be it tax cuts or spending) to ward off a recession. Congress created it in order to force action on our perceived debt crisis, which is why the deficit will go down if we go over the fiscal cliff.

    Washington officials understand this: That’s why Secretary Tim Geithner explained that going over the fiscal cliff would actually buy us more time before we hit the debt ceiling. But in the broader debate, our long-term structural deficit and our short-term austerity crisis have become conflated and confused with one another, as both party leaders and outside groups like Fix the Debt have been gunning for a “grand bargain” that included historic, sweeping reforms that went well beyond the bounds of the fiscal cliff.

    Now that such a big deal is all impossible at this point, legislators are now tasked with coming up with a short-term patch to blunt some of the most jarring effects of upfront austerity. It’s entirely possible to do so and strike a “small deal” that avoids most of the fiscal cliff’s immediate fallout without solving our long-term structural deficit. That could carry its own risks, for sure, but it would certainly be better for the near-term economy than going over the cliff in its entirety and doing nothing at all.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2012/12/27/starbucks-grande-confusion-over-the-fiscal-cliff/?Post+generic=%3Ftid%3Dsm_twitter_washingtonpost

    Like

  39. rikyrah says:

    Sarah Brady@Bradytwitt

    I’m tired of hearing how well Tip O’Neill and Ronald Reagan got along. At that time there weren’t tea party obstructions in Congress.

    Like

    • Ametia says:

      Folks are totally in LA LA LAND, when it comes to their so-called past fantasy political teams. There they go; CLINGING to the good ole days with the good ole boys! GTFOH

      Like

  40. rikyrah says:

    The Associated Press✔
    @AP

    Turkish officials: Two Syrian air force generals have defected and crossed the border: apne.ws/ZG5u5J – KM

    Like

  41. rikyrah says:

    Blackthorne@Blackthornicus

    Number of uninsured Americans down to 4 year low due to #Obamacare exm.nr/RkUJkn #p2

    Like

  42. rikyrah says:

    What bipartisan outreach looks like

    By Steve Benen
    Fri Dec 28, 2012 9:13 AM EST

    Rep. Steven LaTourette (R) of Ohio is wrapping up his 18-year career, and as he heads for the exits, the congressman — a Republican moderate by 2012 standards — is sharing some interesting insights as he reflects on what’s become of Capitol Hill.

    For example, LaTourette chatted with Dave Weigel about his party’s confusion about earmarks, his caucus’ unfortunate preoccupation with abortion votes, and the mistaken impeachment crusade against President Clinton in 1998. But this was the quote that stood out for me:

    “Between 1996 and 1998 you get welfare reform, you kick out a major highway bill. You get a lot of good work done, and it was because Bill Clinton was willing to triangulate the Democrats. He’d actually reach out and talk to us. This president doesn’t work with us at all.

    I hear this quite a bit from Republicans: President Obama just hasn’t worked hard enough to reach out to, and work with, his GOP rivals in Congress. And every time I come across the argument, I desperately want Republicans to explain what in the world they’re talking about.

    Let’s say it’s 2009, you’re President Obama, you ran on a platform of bringing people together, and you’re serious about following through on this commitment. What would you do? Maybe you’d appoint Republicans to key positions in your administration; you’d reach out for regular face-to-face meetings with Republican lawmakers; and you’d incorporate Republican ideas into your proposals on health care, foreign policy, energy, immigration, and education.

    Except, Obama did all of those things. It didn’t work.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2012/12/28/16212795-what-bipartisan-outreach-looks-like?lite

    Like

  43. rikyrah says:

    Elections have consequences…this is what happens when you don’t get out to vote.

    …………………….

    Maine goes broke, gov wants more tax cuts
    By Laura Conaway
    Thu Dec 27, 2012 6:00 PM EST

    Last year Maine Governor Paul LePage signed the largest tax cuts in his state’s history, saying it would be good for business and the economy. Today, facing a river of red ink, the Republican governor ordered $35.5 million in immediate spending cuts, a third of that in funding for education. The shortfall now comes from corporate and sales taxes coming in lower than expected.

    It’s still more money than LePage wanted for government. During the election, he argued for yet more tax cuts:

    “I think the state of Maine should have no corporate tax at all and that the United States of America should be around 20 percent,” he said. “Then we could compete worldwide.

    That position proved unpopular with voters, who picked Democrats and their campaign against LePage’s tax policies. Democrats won control of the state legislature, but not with a veto-proof majority. That means spending cuts like the “temporary” ones announced today could become a more permanent feature of governance. Starting this summer, Maine faces the loss of $400 million in revenue over the next two years — all from the cuts LePage signed in 2011.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2012/12/27/16194507-maine-goes-broke-gov-wants-more-tax-cuts?lite

    Like

  44. rikyrah says:

    Giving the appearance of movement in fiscal talks
    By Steve Benen
    Fri Dec 28, 2012 8:00 AM EST

    It’s been about a week since House Speaker John Boehner’s “Plan B” fiasco left congressional Republicans divided and directionless, and since then, there hasn’t been so much as a hint of progress in the larger fiscal process. With looming deadlines just a few days away, there have been literally no efforts to even try to reach a resolution.

    That’s about to change. The Senate is already back in session, and House members will start reaching DC soon for a Sunday session. What’s more, for good or ill, we’ll at least see the appearance of movement among top officials today.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2012/12/28/16211670-giving-the-appearance-of-movement-in-fiscal-talks?lite

    Like

  45. rikyrah says:

    Coming to grips with who won (and who didn’t) in 2012
    By Steve Benen
    Fri Dec 28, 2012 8:35 AM EST.

    Grover Norquist gave voice last night to a sentiment that’s been surprisingly common over the last several weeks. It is, to be sure, a transparently dumb sentiment, but the idea keeps popping up anyway.

    Grover Norquist‏@GroverNorquist
    We had an election Boehner was elected speaker. Now lame duck obama should get over it. (Also 30 GOP governors)

    Hmm. In the mind of this influential uber-lobbyist, Republicans had a great election cycle, so President Obama should just “get over it.” In context, this is presumably in reference to the ongoing fiscal talks, in which Norquist apparently thinks the GOP should get its way since John Boehner was “elected Speaker.”

    In case anyone is confused enough to take this argument seriously, let’s set the record straight.

    Boehner, for example, was “elected Speaker” by the electorate. The Speaker is chosen by House members, and in this specific case, we don’t yet know with certainty that Boehner will prevail.

    But let’s put that aside, because it’s not really the point. Rather, the national election results speak for themselves: President Obama, whom Republicans fully expected to defeat, won fairly easily, earning 332 electoral votes, and becoming the first president since Eisenhower — and only the sixth president in American history — to win at least 51% of the popular vote twice.

    In the Senate, where Republicans were certain they’d add seats, Democrats expanded their majority. In the House, Democrats not only added seats, they collectively earned roughly 1.4 million votes than GOP candidates — the only reason House Republicans maintain their majority is gerrymandered districts.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/

    Like

  46. Ametia says:

    Loving the interview with the OBAMAs. I have this photo of them framed.

    Like

  47. Ametia says:

    Good Morning, Everyone, Happy FRY-day! :-)

    Like

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