Tuesday Open Thread

Kenneth Brian Babyface Edmonds (born April 10, 1958) is an American R&B and pop singer-songwriter, guitarist, keyboardist, record producer, film producer, and entrepreneur.

Kenneth Edmonds was born on April 10, 1958, in Indianapolis, Indiana[1] to Marvin and Barbara Edmonds. Barbara was a pharmaceutical plant manager. Edmonds, who is the fifth of six brothers (which also included future After 7 bandmembers Melvin and Kevon Edmonds, the latter of whom later had a modestly successful solo career), attended North Central High School in Indianapolis, Indiana and as a shy youth, wrote songs to express his emotions.[citation needed] When he was in eighth grade, Edmonds’s father died of lung cancer, leaving his mother to raise her sons alone. At this stage, Edmonds became determined to have a career in music.

About SouthernGirl2

A Native Texan who adores baby kittens, loves horses, rodeos, pomegranates, & collect Eagles. Enjoys politics, games shows, & dancing to all types of music. Loves discussing and learning about different cultures. A Phi Theta Kappa lifetime member with a passion for Social & Civil Justice.
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54 Responses to Tuesday Open Thread

  1. President Obama and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano tour the Bridge of America Cargo Facility in El Paso during their visit to the U.S.-Mexico border

  2. rikyrah says:

    May 10, 2011 10:00 AM
    Breitbart gets pwned by ‘Pigford’ attorney, targeted in his latest smear campaign
    By David Neiwert

    John Stossel devoted his show this past weekend to an attempt to defend his report on “freeloaders” — which not only was riddled throughout with false “facts,” outright falsehoods, gross distortions, and misleading sound bytes, it was nakedly racist in its depiction of minorities who are the beneficiaries of government largesse as cheaters and chiselers.

    So who did he invite on to help make this case? Why, Andrew Breitbart — liar, prevaricator, and misleader extraordinaire — of course. Breitbart, you see, was Stossel’s chief source for the segment on black farmers who are supposedly ripping off the government in the Pigford case — the non-story that Breitbart has been assiduously, obsessively pursuing as a way of trying to cover his tracks for his grotesque performance in the Shirley Sherrod matter.

    He also invited on Al Pires, one of the lead attorneys for those same farmers, to serve as their pinata for the segment. Except it turned out that this pinata had his own big stick — and went right after Breitbart for the fact that his reportage on the Pigford case has been a wanton exercise in legal (and agricultural ignorance:

    PIRES: I don’t know who Mr. Breitbart is. He’s obviously not a farmer and he’s not a journalist — none of that’s even remotely true.

    Who are you? Making fun of people who have the guts to take cases against the government. You don’t know anything about farming and litigation. You’re some gadfly from Hollywood. I looked you up. You’re some guy who didn’t have a job for ten years.

    Yeah, I know who you are. You’re some gadfly from Hollywood. You’re the son of a rich family, you never worked for a living in your life. You go around making fun of poor people, you go making fun of Indians and Blacks and Hispanics and women and I’m not putting up with it. I feel bad for you. You’re a sad, sad person. Why don’t you go get a job?

    I especially got a kick out of Stossel trying to pretend that no, really, Breitbart is a journalist! Sorry, dude — you actually have to practice journalism — which entails a balanced search of facts and truth — and not thesis-driven propaganda to earn that title.

    Mind you, Pires could have been far more effective if he had just started listing the times Breitbart and Co. have been caught deceptively editing videos and lying about their subjects. But that’s OK. Sometimes it’s satisfying to just see guys like Breitbart get slapped down on every imaginable basis — and with this particular lying liar, even personal rips like these are fully deserved. Especially when the entire segment is devoted to an ad-hominem smear of their victim as a rich conniver. Can’t blame him for tossing the same game back in their faces.


  3. Ametia says:

  4. rikyrah says:



    Last Updated: May 09. 2011 6:47PM
    GM to invest $2 billion in plants in 8 states
    David Shepardson / / The Detroit News

    General Motors Co. is expected to announce Tuesday it will invest about $2 billion at its plants in eight states — creating or supporting about 4,200 jobs — two people briefed on the matter said.

    GM chairman and CEO Dan Akerson will announce the plans at the company’s Toledo Transmission plant in Ohio. The company is expected to add about 250 jobs as part of a $250 million upgrade to the plant.

    From The Detroit News: http://detnews.com/article/20110509/AUTO01/105090403/GM-to-invest-$2-billion-in-plants-in-8-states#ixzz1LxZvsi9A

  5. Ametia says:


    NBC’s Three-Hour ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ Down 23%CBS’ “The Amazing Race” finale dips, but ABC’s “Brothers & Sisters” season ender gets a double-digit boost.
    May 9 12:38 PM 5/9/2011 by Philiana Ng

    supersized edition of Donald Trump’s competition series Celebrity Apprentice spanned three hours, going head-to-head against the rest of primetime on Sunday.

    But, NBC’s three-hour telecast — which saw Star Jones and LaToya Jackson fired and NeNe Leakes quitting — didn’t fare so well: Celebrity Apprentice (7 million total viewers, 2.4 rating in the adults 18-49 demographic) was the lowest-rated spring telecast for the franchise, dipping 23 percent. Dateline (3.9 million, 0.8) served as a weak lead-in, down 33 percent. The Peacock placed fourth for the night in the key demo.

    CBS won the night with 60 Minutes (13.8 million, 2.3) surging 43 percent, thanks to President Obama’s only televised interview about Osama bin Laden’s death. The two-hour finale of The Amazing Race (8.6 million, 2.5) was the lowest-rated in franchise history. CSI: Miami (9.7 million, 2.0), however, ended its season with a double-digit uptick, but still was one of the series’ lowest-rated episodes.


  6. Ametia says:

  7. rikyrah says:

    May 10, 2011 9:20 AM

    Taxes and tables

    By Steve Benen

    House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), in his speech last night in New York, insisted that he’s desperate to lower the deficit. But his desperation has limits.

    We should be talking about cuts of trillions, not just billions. They should be actual cuts and program reforms, not broad deficit or debt targets that punt the tough questions to the future.

    “And with the exception of tax hikes — which will destroy jobs — everything is on the table.”

    Dave Weigel noted, “At some point, eventually, people are going to notice that if one thing is off the table, ‘everything’ is not on the table.”

    Alas, that point has not yet arrived. The Speaker didn’t just make his argument in passing, either — he returned, again and again, to his commitment to blocking any measure that increased any tax on anyone at any time by any amount. Indeed, Boehner has given up entirely on any claim to reason — he not only argued that even a modest tax increase would “wreak havoc” on the economy, the Speaker went so far as to say increased revenue would make it harder to lower the deficit.

    As a substantive matter, Boehner has no idea what he’s talking about. His entire schpiel is gibberish. Even a rudimentary understanding of recent events should make clear, even to someone with Boehner’s limited abilities, that his model doesn’t make sense. Reagan raised taxes and the economy grew. Clinton raised taxes and the economy grew. Bush slashed taxes and produced the worst job-creation record of any president in generations.

    How does the Speaker even think this is possible?

    For that matter, multiple national polls show that the single most popular deficit-reduction idea is increased taxes on the wealthiest Americans, and a balanced approach — a combination of tax increases and spending cuts — enjoys broad bipartisan support. Does Boehner think the whole country has gone mad?

    As for what’s on or off the proverbial table, I’d still like to hear, just once, Democratic leaders declare that spending cuts are off the table.

    Dems, in this hypothetical, would say they agree with the importance of addressing the fiscal problem, but before the debate advances, they want to make one thing clear: spending cuts would be bad for the economy, so Republicans ought to just forget about it. Democrats would compromise, but not on this fundamental point. If we’re going to tackle the problem, they’d say, the exclusive focus would be on receipts, not expenditures.

    If Democrats were to take this line, it’s safe to assume they’d be mocked, laughed at, and dismissed as unserious. And yet, Boehner continues to make this precise argument, only from the other direction.

    The Speaker reminded us last night that he considers one penny in new revenue entirely unacceptable. I’ll look forward to all the pundits questioning his “seriousness.”


    • creolechild says:

      Wow! The Democrats are on message and are pushing back against the Republicans to advance the President’s agenda.

      “WASHINGTON — Less than a day after House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) demanded that the debt ceiling not be lifted unless the government reduce spending by $2 trillion, Democrats are calling his bluff.”


      “You can’t talk about cuts without first looking at eliminating the giveaways to big oil. It should start there,” Jon Summers, a top spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), said in a statement. “We agree we have to cut spending, but it is ridiculous for Republicans to push a plan to kill Medicare while trying to defend taxpayer handouts to big oil companies that are making record profits. They don’t need the money. If Republicans are serious about cutting spending, they’ll support our plan to eliminate welfare for Big Oil so we can apply that money toward the deficit.”


  8. rikyrah says:

    Arnold Schwarzenegger, Maria Shriver Announce Separation

    It was a storybook marriage in 1986 on a spring weekend on Cape Cod that united a princess of an American political dynasty, Maria Shriver, and the gap-toothed muscle-clad movie star famous enough to be known by one name, Arnold.

    In many ways, it was a pairing of opposites: Her uncle was a U.S. president; his father was an Austrian policeman. She was the rising star of a network TV news show; he was the pot-puffing star of “Pumping Iron.” He was a Republican with a soft spot for Richard Nixon; her family was a pillar in the nation’s Democratic establishment.

    Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Shriver announced their separation late Monday, cleaving a sometimes-turbulent 25-year relationship after “a time of great personal and professional transition for each of us,” the couple said in a joint statement.


  9. rikyrah says:

    Boehner Backs Means-Testing Medicare

    In his debt limit speech before a Wall Street crowd at the Economic Club of New York Monday evening, House Speaker John Boehner defended the GOP’s Medicare plan in broad terms. But in particular, he defended one aspect of the proposal that’s largely distinct from its two most controversial parts — privatization, and deep benefit cuts. Specifically, Boehner endorsed the idea that Medicare — whether private or public — should be means tested.

    In a Q&A session with one of the event’s moderators — Wall Street billionare-turned-deficit-scold Pete Peterson — Boehner said wealthy beneficiaries should pay for their Medicare premiums.

    “Pete, I love you to death, but I don’t think the taxpayers ought to be paying your Medicare premium,” Boehner said. “And under Paul Ryan’s plan, what it says is, let’s allow the American people to decide which health care plan fits their needs. And if you’re middle-income, lower income, we are going to pay, just like we do today, for the cost of those premiums.

    But for people of means, there’s no reason why we should subsidize Pete Peterson’s premium. I’m sorry. He ought to pay the full cost of his premium to be in Medicare.”Under the plan in the GOP budget, beneficiaries would get means-tested subsidies to buy private insurance.

    But those subsidies would shrink relative to the cost of health care over time, and soon prove inadequate. Here Boehner is endorsing the concept of means testing, whether applied to Medicare as it exists right now, or privatized Medicare.

    “For those who have substantial means, you can pay your own premium,” he added.That’s still a controversial position particularly given the relatively modest savings.

    In essence it would mean requiring a wealthier subset of seniors to pay thousands-more dollars a year out of pocket, after they paid their whole lives into a program meant to significantly limit their costs.

    And to an extent, it cuts against the basic compact of entitlements — that by treating wealthy and poor beneficiaries equally, the programs win much broader buy-in from the public, which protects them from the sorts of political attacks that make welfare programs so vulnerable.

    But if the GOP moves off its privatization plan, it’s easy to imagine them taking up means-testing as a “compromise” position.


  10. rikyrah says:

    Obama Tries to Revive Far-Reaching Immigration Reform

    President Obama will deliver a speech in Texas Tuesday intended to revive interest in a far-reaching approach to immigration, one of the nation’s most divisive political issues.

    The White House hopes to use the speech to “create a sense of urgency in Congress and the nation,” according to a senior administration official. With a divided Congress and fewer advocates for comprehensive immigration than in 2007, the last time Congress tried to push through a comprehensive immigration solution, the speech undoubtedly will do more to reaffirm Obama’s commitment to a key voting block in 2012 than to gain any legislative traction on Capitol Hill.

    The President campaigned in 2008 on a pledge to produce a broad immigration bill in his first year in office but has failed to deliver on that promise. In recent months, Obama has tried to revitalize interest in the issue, and has met with Latino celebrities, including actress Eva Longoria, law enforcement officials and other stakeholders to discuss ways to overcome Congressional gridlock.

    In El Paso Tuesday Obama will address the nation’s immigration problems in a speech at the Chamizal National Memorial, the site created to commemorate the peaceful settlement of a century-long boundary dispute between Mexico and the United States in 1963.

    Obama will stress his administration’s record of increasing security on the U.S.-Mexican border, and given these strides, will argue the U.S. has the opportunity and obligation to fix a problem that Congress has long struggled to address, according to senior administration officials.

    “Over the past two years this administration has dedicated more resources to securing the border than ever before,” an official told reporters on a conference call Monday, noting that the number of border-control agents have more than doubled during Obama’s time in office. “These are the most sustained and serious actions in securing our Southwest border in our nation’s history.”

    The speech also will focus on the economic benefits of creating a path for citizenship for the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants already living and working in the United States, as well as those immigrants here on student visas attending U.S. universities and colleges. Obama will not offer detailed legislative remedies in his speech or call for specific deadlines for Congressional action, senior administration officials indicated.

    Before the speech, Obama plans to tour the facility at the Bridge of the Americas Port of Entry, the largest of four crossings that comprise the El Paso Port of Entry.

    Despite Obama’s best efforts to refocus the nation on the need for comprehensive immigration reform, Latino leaders in Congress consider the effort too little too late. Advocates of immigration reform, had had a tough time getting even piecemeal immigration bills passed.

    Last year, even when Democrats controlled both the Senate and the House, Congress could not pass the DREAM Act, a bill aimed at providing upstanding young undocumented immigrants with a path to citizenship. With Republicans in charge in the House, there is even less chance of passing immigration legislation this year or next.

    In the vacuum, states such as Arizona have passed controversial laws targeting illegal immigrants. Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer announced Monday that she plans to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a lower court ruling barring some of the more controversial aspects of her state’s new immigration law.



    While I commend the President for making this speech, this is what I feel about immigration (I’m probably to the right of most of you here):

    Barack Obama IS NOT RESPONSIBLE for doing their heavy lifting.

    The President has already told them that he WILL sign immigration reform, ONCE IT GETS TO HIS DESK.

    This isn’t a problem for Barack Obama.

    This isn’t even a problem or Democrats, because they are on board.

    IF the Latinos want immigration reform, then their asses are going to have to do the heavy lifting themselves and GET THE 10 GOP VOTES IN THE SENATE.

    What I want to know is,

    How come Senator Anchor Baby Rubio from Florida, isn’t on the television talking about how he’s the point man in the Senate for Immigration Reform?


    I’m a political junkie and I haven’t seen his ass say SHYT about immigration reform.

    I haven’t heard him say SHYT about the ‘ What about if you ain’t White’ Law that they want in Florida.

    I haven’t seen the Latinos threatening GOP Senators with large Latino POPULATIONS.

    NO sit-ins in their offices.

    NO townhalls in their districts.

    If the Latino vote is so important like they say it is, then how come they aren’t in the GOP’s faces.

    The President had stuff to do his first two years, namely saving the economy and doing healthcare.

    And, I say, without equivocation, that BOTH of them are far more important than him wasting any important political capital by trying to do immigration reform along with them. Sorry, but it needed to take a back seat.

    IF the Latinos want Immigration reform, then they need to get their behinds out in the street, and organizing, and protesting the GOPers that are blocking him.

    What they don’t need to do is offer anymore bullshyt threats like the weasel Guitierrez, talking about he doesn’t know if he can support the President.

    FUCK HIM and anyone else that talks about not supporting the President over something that the President has already demonstrated –REPEATEDLY – that he’s for.

    Let their asses vote for the GOP…and we’ll see how many more ‘ WHAT ABOUT IF YOU AINT WHITE, DON’T YOU UNDERSTAND’ laws the GOP can enact.

    • Ametia says:

      100% COSIGN, Rikyrah. And if the Latinos need any tips and pointers, they can ask the WISCONSINITES how it’s done.

  11. rikyrah says:

    Newtonian Calculus
    by mistermix

    A word of warning to those with weak stomachs: you might want to hold off on reading this morning’s Times profile of Newt Gingrich and his third wife Callista until after your breakfast has settled.

    I’m guessing it was meant to be a puff-piece beat sweetener, but the yuck factor of the young plastic trophy wife coupled with that disgusting old geezer just overwhelms the whole exercise.

    Did you know that she’s 22 years his junior and their affair started when she was still in her 20s? Trust me, if you didn’t, those facts will be burned into your brain and roiling your stomach long after today’s newspaper is lining birdcages.

    Newt and Callista run a bullshit factory built on Newt’s reputation as a Republican macher, and daddy can’t write paychecks unless there’s cash in the bank, so Newt pretty much had to run for real this year, otherwise people would just point and laugh in 2016.

    Unfortunately for Newt’s future cash flows, his “I’m a candidate” sideshow is already the butt of Saturday Night Live skits. I doubt that Newt will even make the official David Brooks serious candidate list this time around—the best he can hope for is a few more years on the Sunday shows.

    Newt’s latest sideshow gimmick is a heartfelt conversion to Catholicism, his wife’s religion, timed appropriately to coincide with his company’s release of a DVD about Pope John Paul II.

    By the time 2016 rolls around, Newt will probably be shilling tales of the pain of the circumcision required for him to convert to Judaism in order to marry his fourth trophy wife, all timed to pimp the release of a special two-DVD collection honoring the life of Binny Netanyahu.


  12. creolechild says:

    Good morning everyone! This is good news…

    “The Texas high school teacher who allegedly told a Muslim girl in his ninth grade algebra class that “I bet that you’re grieving” over the death of Osama bin Laden will not be returning to work, a school spokesperson tells TPM.”

    “The teacher was suspended last week after the girl complained about his comments to her, which came the day after bin Laden was killed by American forces in Pakistan. The girl’s name has been kept out of reporting on the case, and a spokesperson for the Clear Creek Independent School District would not immediately release the name of the teacher to TPM.”

    “The incident took place at Clear Brook High School near Houston. Parents and fellow students were outraged by the teacher’s remarks to the girl, which allegedly included him calling bin Laden ‘your uncle.'”

    “Clear Creek Independent School District spokesperson Elaina Polsen declined to say that the teacher had been fired.”


  13. rikyrah says:

    May 10, 2011

    A sputtering swindle

    Pretty much everyone by now knows about the chief problem with the Ryan budget.

    Everyone knows that, aside from its wide-ranging factual errors and mistaken future assumptions and laughably creative math, its biggest problem is its Medicare provisions — the ones that essentially privatize the government’s guarantees into a voucher program, which would short seniors by at least several thousand dollars a year and therefore leave many of the elderly either deplorably underinsured or hopelessly uninsured or at any rate vastly poorer and less well insured than they are now, by Medicare.

    The Ryan Medicare proposal would rip a black hole of despair in our social safety net and gut our national promise to seniors of care and compassion and guaranteed coverage, yet the pseudoconservative imagination doesn’t stop there. No, the Ryan plan would also happily transfer the fiscal savings from the preceding deprivations to the marginal benefit of America’s wealthiest.

    The Ryan, actually the Republican House, Medicare proposal is F. Hayek on steroids, it’s Social Darwinism meets a non-European Frankenstein, it’s an accounting-trick abdication of the fundamental urge to human decency in evolving government forms since the New Deal, which was roughly the point at which most Americans realized that cutthroat capitalism and smiley-faced plutocracy were an intolerably raw deal.

    Now, all of that is “a problem,” wouldn’t you say? In fact, it’s the problem. Medicare’s privatization would hurl millions of seniors into crippling poverty and inadequate healthcare coverage and any way you cut it that’s a titanic problem in itself, indeed the only one worthy of worry. Right?

    Well, not according to GOP Strategy Central, where thinking caps have been strapped on and reassessments are now pouring forth: “The real problem is the Democrats are out there beating the crap out of Republicans because they’re saying we’re privatizing Medicare,” said a senior Senate Republican strategist. “It’s a problem because Republicans haven’t messaged it well.”

    And there you have it, neatly packaged: First the real world, the one in which real problems worry real people; and then you’ve the GOP world, the one in which the only real problems are political ones, and which remain problematic only because swindling Republicans have yet to replot an angular course of messaging bamboozlement.


  14. rikyrah says:

    May 10, 2011 8:30 AM


    By Steve Benen

    Last week, after a pretty encouraging monthly jobs report, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) had to figure out a way to complain about good news. He relied on an old stand-by.

    “Our economy continues to suffer from the uncertainty being caused for private-sector job creators by the Democrats who run Washington,” he said. In the same press release, though, Boehner added, “Congressional Republicans have made clear there will be no debt limit increase unless it is accompanied by significant spending cuts and reforms.”

    The irony was lost on the Speaker. In one paragraph, he decried “uncertainty” and said it’s holding back the economy. In another paragraph, Boehner boasted of his party’s intention to create more uncertainty, on purpose.

    Last night, the Speaker was at it again. See if you can spot the subtlety of the rhetoric in Boehner’s address to the Economic Club of New York.

    “The effect of adding nearly a trillion dollars to our national debt — money borrowed mostly from foreign investors — caused a further erosion of economic confidence in America, and increased uncertainty for millions of private-sector job creators. […]

    “Instead what Washington has done is raise the specter of higher taxes, creating more uncertainty for those in America who create jobs. […]

    “If we fail to use this as a moment to demonstrate that we’re getting serious about fixing the debt, the result will be fewer jobs, less confidence, and more uncertainty.[…]

    “The mere threat of tax hikes causes uncertainty for job creators — uncertainty that results in less risk-taking and fewer jobs.”

    I especially like that last one. Boehner thinks even talking about tax increases is bad for the economy. He didn’t appear to be kidding.

    As a matter of public policy, the Republican obsession with “uncertainty” has always been a transparent sham. The economy has struggled through the Great Recession for a variety of reasons, but the evidence that Democratic policies are responsible for generating recovery-stunting uncertainty is imaginary.

    But what’s truly fascinating here is the disconnect between Boehner’s ostensible beliefs and Boehner’s threats. The Speaker and his caucus have insisted, ad nauseum, that they’re prepared to deliberately destroy the American economy by blocking a debt-ceiling increase. Indeed, he did so again last night. So far, investors and global markets don’t really believe them — why would American officials screw over their own country on purpose? — but GOP officials keep saying it anyway.

    If uncertainty is so scary, and policymakers must do all that they can to stomp out uncertainty wherever it exists, the Republican strategy borders on mental illness. The House Speaker is creating uncertainty while decrying uncertainty, and makes no effort to even acknowledge the cognitive dissonance.


  15. rikyrah says:

    Mitch Daniels and the Gravitas Lobby, Part Two

    Huffpo’s Jon Ward is reporting that Mitch Daniels wants to run for president, and that the only hurdle to his candidacy is his wife’s hesitancy to discuss her decision to leave Daniels and their four daughters in 1993, and then marry another man, and her subsequent decision in 1997 to return to Daniels and remarry him.

    Interestingly enough, Cheri Daniels, long known as reticent about direct involvement in politics, is going to be the keynote speaker at a major Indiana Republican Party event this Thursday. It’s a bit hard to imagine her taking on that assignment even as she is thwarting her husband’s presidential ambitions, but you never know.

    Meanwhile, Team Daniels took a major shot across the bow today from Rush Limbaugh, who issued a sneering commentary making it clear he interprets terms like “serious” and “gravitas” as applied to Daniels much as I figured social conservatives might do: as “boring” and “moderate.”

    Posted by Ed Kilgore on May 9, 2011 8:05 PM


  16. rikyrah says:

    Mitch Daniels and the Gravitas Lobby

    In a recent profile of the proto-candidacy of Mitch Daniels, I predicted that the Very Serious People in Washington would begin caterwauling for his entry into the race.

    This does indeed seem to be happening, if the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza is listening to the appropriate Republican Beltway poohbahs, which he is certainly well-positioned to do. Last week’s minor-candidate-dominated South Carolina debate seems to have been the tipping point for Very Serious People who want Mitch to get in to stop all the crazy social-issues pandering:

    The GOP presidential race has been defined by relative chaos — and weakness — among the field.

    That was reinforced at last week’s first presidential debate of the season, which, aside from former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty, featured a handful of long shots and no-shots debating such topics as the legalization of marijuana — and even heroin.

    Daniels is regarded (and regards himself) as a candidate of considerable gravity, willing to focus on making tough choices about the nation’s financial future even if that conversation is politically unpopular. (At a February speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, he said that “purity in martyrdom is for suicide bombers.”)

    A Daniels candidacy probably would be taken as a sign that the games are over for the Republican Party, that it is time to buckle down and organize to beat President Obama.

    “He will turn a race that is about less serious politics into a race about more serious policy,” argued Alex Castellanos, a Republican media consultant who is not aligned with any candidate heading into 2012. “Daniels is the adult in the room saying the party is over, it’s time to clean house. That contrast in maturity is how a Republican beats Obama.”

    Now if I were a social conservative activist, I’d be pretty annoyed with all the veiled suggestions from Washington that my set of issues was for children, while fiscal stuff was for adults. This is why Daniels’ repeated call for a “truce” on cultural issues drives people who get up in the morning to fight abortion or gay marriage absolutely nuts.

    But totally aside from the intra-Republican factional implications of the lobbying for Daniels, you have to question the planted axiom that Very Serious Talk about debts and deficits is the obvious way to beat Barack Obama. Daniels is hard to distinguish from Paul Ryan in terms of his thinking about how to deal with what he calls the “red menace” of debt, particularly in his enthusiasm for a massive restructuring of Medicare. This is not popular, and is likely to become much less popular as people begin to understand that “premium support” in the context of Medicare would mean a fixed and limited federal contribution to help pay for ever-more-expensive and hard-to-get private health insurance policies.

    I strongly suspect that Very Serious People love Daniels because they think he is serious enough not only to keep the social-issues fanatics in the closet, but to find a way to guide his party in the direction of a deficit reduction compromise involving tax increases, as all “adults” understand will be necessary.

    But if Daniels were indeed that sort of magical figure, the last thing on earth you’d want him to do is to run for president. The GOP presidential nominating contest in 2012 is absolutely certain to involve a long series of activist-imposed litmus tests.

    For Daniels, number one will be renouncing the “truce.” And number two will be an irrevocable, tattooed-on-the-skin promise to never, ever consider tax increases, even if the world is crumbling. That’s just the way the game is played in the GOP, particularly ever since George H.W. Bush agreed to a bipartisan deficit reduction package in 1990.

    If Daniels does decide to run (and he could make an announcement as early as this week), the Gravitas Lobby will fill the air with as much excitement as it is possible to convey with respect to such a sober and adult proposition. Whether this excitement is communicable to the actual nomination campaign trail, where the people that Pew calls Staunch Conservatives are totally in charge, is a truly serious question.

    Posted by Ed Kilgore on May 9, 2011 12:56 PM


  17. rikyrah says:

    May 10, 2011 8:00 AM

    Boehner puts a price tag on his ransom note
    By Steve Benen

    The financial industry is desperate to hear congressional Republicans assure the world that they’ll do the right thing and raise the debt ceiling. Indeed, Wall Street wants to hear this sooner rather than later.

    But House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) is less concerned about responsible policymaking and the nation’s best interests, and more concerned with playing a very dangerous game of chicken. The Speaker who was, just a few months ago, sensible and mature when it came to the debt ceiling, has been replaced with this guy.

    In his most specific statement to date on what Republicans will demand in the debt ceiling fight, Mr. Boehner told the Economic Club of New York that the level of spending reductions should exceed the amount of the increase in borrowing power.

    “Without significant spending cuts and changes to the way we spend the American people’s money, there will be no debt limit increase,” Mr. Boehner told members of New York’s business and finance community. “And cuts should be greater than the accompanying increase in debt authority the president is given.” Mr. Boehner said those cuts should be in the trillions of dollars, not billions.

    In more precise figures, the Speaker now expects Democrats agree to more than $2 trillion in cuts, without raising taxes on anyone by any amount. If Dems balk, Boehner and his party will deliberately destroy the economy — or, as part of the hostage strategy, that’s at least what the Speaker wants Democrats to believe.

    Boehner added that, while failure on this issue could prove catastrophic, he believes a clean debt-ceiling bill would be worse for the economy. It’s an argument so preposterous, it’s enough to make me wonder if the Speaker has suffered some kind of head trauma recently.

    It’s worth noting that the Speaker’s ransom note now has a price tag — albeit, an unrealistic price tag — but no additional details. Boehner doesn’t know where the $2 trillion in cuts should come from or over what kind of timeframe. He just knows that he’s picked an arbitrary number and expects Democrats to figure out a way to meet his demands.

    The ambiguity is not an accident, and it’s not just the result of a lazy House Speaker who isn’t proficient enough with policy details to do the work himself. Rather, Boehner can’t get more specific without committing to massive reductions in Medicare and Social Security — there’s almost certainly no other way to find those kinds of savings, given the Speaker’s parameters — which he doesn’t want to put on paper.

    Boehner prefers to present the radical target and demand that Democrats scramble to meet it. All the while, he’ll hold the proverbial hostage at gunpoint.

    Given recent history, we know how this game is supposed to work. GOP leaders will start negotiations with an outlandish demand, with the hopes that a “compromise” will still be to their liking. The difference in this case is that the White House and congressional Dems know what Boehner knows — he can’t shoot the hostage without destroying the economy on purpose.

    If the Speaker has even a modicum of patriotism — if, in other words, he actually cares about the health of the nation — he can’t pull the trigger. This should, in theory, undermine Republicans’ leverage, unless the GOP really has gone stark raving mad.


    • creolechild says:

      Rikyrah- this is what the Tea Party wants in exchange for increasing the debt ceiling. They want to go backwards while most of the country wants to move forward…

      “The two sides of the debate over whether the tea party is at heart a socially conservative movement or a fiscally conservative one smashed together Monday morning at a press conference in Washington, where a tea party leader told reporters he’d be willing to accept a bump in the debt ceiling if Republicans promise to put an end to ‘military effeminzation.'”

      “Speakers from the Cato Institute’s Dan Mitchell to a man dressed as George Washington to Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) — who sent a written statement that was read aloud — told a small crowd of reporters that House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and his GOP leadership team were ignoring their tea party mandate by supporting an increase in the federal debt limit. They called on Republicans in the House to attach strict spending riders onto any deal they make with an Obama administration desperate to avoid government default.”

      “For Bachmann, no less than the “complete defunding of Obamacare” would do. For others, a total spending freeze and a small, short-term limit increase was acceptable, provided it came with guarantees of deep spending cuts. For Tea Party Founding Fathers chairman William Temple, a reinstatement of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and keeping women out of combat roles would also be acceptable.”


    • Ametia says:

      David Plouffe and Co. are setting another trap for the GOP. Fall GOP, fall deeper into the rabbit hole, but you’re not taking sane Americans with you.

  18. U.S. Braced For Fights With Pakistanis In Bin Laden Raid


    WASHINGTON — President Obama insisted that the assault force hunting down Osama bin Laden last week be large enough to fight its way out of Pakistan if confronted by hostile local police officers and troops, senior administration and military officials said Monday.

    In revealing additional details about planning for the mission, senior officials also said that two teams of specialists were on standby: One to bury Bin Laden if he was killed, and a second composed of lawyers, interrogators and translators in case he was captured alive. That team was set to meet aboard a Navy ship, most likely the aircraft carrier Carl Vinson in the North Arabian Sea.

    Mr. Obama’s decision to increase the size of the force sent into Pakistan shows that he was willing to risk a military confrontation with a close ally in order to capture or kill the leader of Al Qaeda.

    Such a fight would have set off an even larger breach with the Pakistanis than has taken place since officials in Islamabad learned that helicopters filled with members of a Navy Seals team had flown undetected into one of their cities, and burst into a compound where Bin Laden was hiding.

    • One senior Obama administration official, pressed on the rules of engagement for one of the riskiest clandestine operations attempted by the C.I.A. and the military’s Joint Special Operations Command in many years, said: “Their instructions were to avoid any confrontation if at all possible. But if they had to return fire to get out, they were authorized to do it.”

      That doesn’t sound like there was an agreement with Pakistan to get Bin Laden? Lying liars and the lies they tell!

  19. Ametia says:

    Posted at 01:39 PM ET, 05/09/2011
    PRESIDENT Obama to hold new deficit-reduction meetings with Democratic, Republican senators
    By Felicia Sonmez

    President Obama will hold two separate meetings later this week with all Democratic and all Republican senators to talk about deficit reduction, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney announced Monday.

    Obama’s meeting with the Senate Democrats is scheduled to take place on Wednesday. He is expected to meet with Senate Republicans on Thursday.

    The meetings will come on the heels of Tuesday’s meeting at Blair House between Vice President Joe Biden and negotiators from both chambers, the second round in the White House-led deficit-reduction talks.

    Congressional leaders are beginning this week to draw more-detailed lines in the deficit-reduction battle. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) is traveling Monday to Manhattan, where he’s expected to lay out House Republicans’ strategy in the looming debt-limit fight.

    Meanwhile, in a conference call with reporters, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), the Senate’s number-three Democrat, projected Monday afternoon that if no progress has been made in the debt-ceiling battle by mid-July, the world’s financial markets may not respond favorably.

    “If nothing’s happening by July 15 or so, I’d say the markets are going to get really, really worried, so the sooner the better,” Schumer said.

    Carney also said during Monday’s press briefing that meetings between Obama and the House Democratic and Republican caucuses are likely over the next few weeks.


  20. Ametia says:

    Clyburn’s leadership role ‘a work in progress’
    By Ben Pershing, Published: May 9
    As Rep. James E. Clyburn settles behind his desk on the first floor of the Capitol, the view behind him — of the office buildings across Independence Avenue — is less than commanding. His office is high-ceilinged but narrow, and the walls are bare. Multiple aides are crammed into an adjoining room.

    It’s a far cry from the spacious third-floor suite the South Carolina lawmaker occupied when he served as majority whip. But now that Democrats have been relegated to the minority, Clyburn is fortunate just to have an office in the Capitol and, more importantly, a place at the leadership table.

    After their electoral drubbing in November, House Democratic leaders played an unusual game of musical chairs in which, rather than leave someone standing, they simply decided to add another seat. Thus was born Clyburn’s current title — assistant Democratic leader.

    The post was created after it became clear that Clyburn couldn’t beat Rep. Steny H. Hoyer (Md.) for the minority whip position, but he also didn’t want to unseat either of the two men below him on the leadership ladder: Democratic Caucus Chairman John B. Larson (Conn.) and Caucus Vice Chairman Xavier Becerra (Calif.)


  21. rikyrah says:

    Here’s Deaniac at TPV taking on GIGI again.

    I’ve said it before: libertarians do NOT live in the fucking REAL WORLD, and when challenged with this FACT, they get upset and bitchy.


    Bin Laden, al-Awlaki and Glenn Greenwald’s Delicate Fifth Amendment Dance (updated: Greenwald responds, calls TPV “cultist”)
    Monday, May 09, 2011 | Posted by Deaniac83

    Many of you know about Glenn Greenwald, a contributor at extreme libertarian CATO Institute, (he also publishes and sells at least one White Paper on CATO’s website and bookstore), and a pretend-liberal on Salon.com, who has a vendetta he pursues ruthlessly against the Obama Administration. If you listen to Greenwald, he actually sounds a lot more like a Tea Partier than any average American. Everything he writes has that “Boo! The government is taking your rights away!” scare tactic under the cover of “civil libertarianism.” In his Saturday posting, he was very upset that President Obama is trying to take out a radical terrorist cleric. I’ll get to that, but here’s the part that kind of tells you everything you need to know about just how utterly insane Greenwald’s logic has become:

    There are certain civil liberties debates where, even though I hold strong opinions, I can at least understand the reasoning and impulses of those who disagree; the killing of bin Laden was one such instance.

    Ahh. You see, the killing of Bin Laden was a “civil liberties” issue, and in the infinite wisdom of one contributor of the CATO Institute, we violated bin Laden’s civil liberties. The damn Navy SEALs. I guess Greenwald thinks that they should all be court martialed for killing bin Laden instead of reading him his rights. Actually, we don’t have to guess. We already know that Greenwald wanted the SEALs to act like the local police.

    But of course, see, he can understand the impulses of the rest of us stupid people about that. But come on. Ordering the execution of a radical terrorist cleric? Now that’s going too far. This is the story of Anwar al-Awlaki, the American born radical terrorist cleric who has is a regional commander in Al Queda in the Arabian Peninsula and is, in addition to preaching, actively recruiting people to attack American civilians. Greenwald’s complaint? Due process.

    …pointing out that the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution expressly guarantees that “no person shall be deprived of life without due process of law” — and provides no exception for war — is the sort of tedious legalism that shouldn’t interfere with the excitement of drone strikes.

    Ahh. Yes, tedious legalisms indeed. Greenwald’s legalism, though, extends only to the extent that it helps his argument that it is illegal for the President to order the assassination of an American citizen, period, no matter what. Except, Mr. Constitutional Scholar pretty conveniently ignores the fact that nowhere in the Fifth Amendment is the word “citizen” mentioned. here is the full text:

    No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

    Do you see the word “citizen” there? Neither do I. Contrary to what Greenwald (and George W. Bush) thinks, the 5th Amendment, like the rest of the Constitution, applies not just to citizens but “persons.” The fifth amendment makes no distinction between a US citizen and a noncitizen. So if we are to follow Greenwald’s logic, and replace “American citizen” with “person” in keeping with the 5th Amendment, the conclusion is that the President cannot authorize the assassination of anyone, anywhere. Even Glenn Greenwald isn’t arguing that – even though that is the logical conclusion of the argument he’s making. Why isn’t he saying it then? Because it won’t be as potent a weapon against President Obama as saying “he wants to kill American citizens!”

    I am no Constitutional lawyer, but it seems to me that a reasonable interpretation of the Fifth Amendment would define its application to all persons under and subject to the laws of the United States. That is why torture under US custody is wrong – not because it’s being done to citizens or non citizens, but persons who are under the control of the United States. It is foolhardy, however, to think that anyone outside the territories, control or protection of the US law, plotting terrorist against the United States is entitled to the protections of the Fifth Amendment. If, however, al-Awlaki were to come within the custody or territory of the United States, the protections of the Fifth Amendment would apply to him regardless of his citizenship status. I have a feeling though that he’s not going to do that willingly. Incidentally, Greenwald fails to mention that there is a warrant out in Yemen for al-Awlaki’s arrest. And for the CIA, he’s on the capture-or-kill (as opposed to just kill) list.

    But the notion that the President has the power to order American citizens assassinated without an iota of due process — far from any battlefield, not during combat — is an idea so utterly foreign to me, so far beyond the bounds of what is reasonable, that it’s hard to convey in words or treat with civility.

    Ah, now you see why killing Bin Laden was a civil liberties issue. See, when he was killed, bin Laden too was “far from any battlefield, not during combat” – the only difference being that bin Laden was not an American citizen. So that’s why Greenwald can “at least understand the reasoning and impulses” of you puny little, sad people. He can “understand” the argument that bin Laden could be shot and killed only because he wasn’t American. If by some chance, he were, killing him would just be terrible! Even more terrible than it was!


    UPDATE: Reactions from Greenwald!

    I told you he reads TPV! And he’s very hot and bothered by being called a CATO “fellow.” He tweets at me that he’s not a CATO fellow, but a mere contributor to CATO’s playground of ideas.

    Ohh. Okay. I made the correction. Sawwy, dude. Feel better now? By the way, Greenwald has more than just “wrote once for CATO Unbound” – he published a white paper on the CATO Institute (not just “Unbound”) website, it encourages you to “purchase a copy” from the CATO bookstore. So umm, Greenwald makes money off of the extreme libertarian CATO Institute.

    Oh, also, Greenwald thinks that The People’s View is cultist – that’s right, guys, we’re a cult!


    • Ametia says:

      FUCK GLENN GREENWALD, he’s a cowardly lil elf who hides out in Brazil, instead of living in America and actually FIGHTING for his gay and marriage rights.

  22. Ametia says:

    Obama to make immigration case at Mexico border
    By Patricia Zengerle
    WASHINGTON | Tue May 10, 2011 6:03am EDT

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama will make his case for immigration reform on Tuesday on a visit to the U.S. border with Mexico, reaching out to Hispanic voters whose support he is counting on to win re-election next year.

    Top aides said Obama would contend in a speech in El Paso, Texas, that tightening border controls while providing a path to citizenship for some illegal immigrants will improve U.S. security as well as the economy.

    “Comprehensive immigration reform would be a plus, not a drag, on the federal budget,” a senior administration official told reporters, requesting anonymity as he spoke before the president’s speech.

    The official said the cost of such overhaul would be $54 billion, but the revenue increase would be $66 billion, adding: “Bringing people to a path where they can be taxpayers is obviously going to be more of a plus than allowing the status quo to continue.”

    The White House will also seek to extend the stay of 1,200 National Guard troops posted at the border who are due to leave in June, another official said, though the administration is still determining how to pay for them.

    There are an estimated 11 million illegal immigrants living in the United States, many of them Latin Americans who crossed the porous 2,000 mile frontier with Mexico.


  23. Ametia says:

    Now casting: A few good GOP candidates
    By Eugene Robinson, Published: May 9

    With the nation transfixed by the daring raid that killed Osama bin Laden, the first GOP presidential debate transpired last week with relatively little notice. For Republicans, that’s the good news.

    The bad news is that for those who did pay attention, the debate brought to mind — and I’m just trying to be honest here, folks — the famous bar scene from “Star Wars.” At times the dialogue sounded like a faltering attempt at interplanetary communication. Can anyone seriously imagine Rick Santorum, Herman Cain, Ron Paul or Gary Johnson as president? Will anyone forgive Tim Pawlenty for joining such a motley crew?


  24. Ametia says:

    Arnold Schwarzenegger, Maria Shriver announce separation
    By Mark Z. Barabak
    Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
    May 9, 2011, 9:47 p.m.

    Former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and his wife, Maria Shriver, have separated, with Shriver moving out of their Brentwood mansion while the two determine the next step in their 25-year marriage.

    Shriver has been residing apart from the actor-turned-politician for the last few weeks. The former first couple confirmed the separation in a joint statement released Monday after questions from The Times.

    “This has been a time of great personal and professional transition for each of us,” the statement read. “After a great deal of thought, reflection, discussion and prayer, we came to this decision together. At this time, we are living apart while we work on the future of our relationship.

    Photos: A political marriage with star power

    “We are continuing to parent our four children together. They are the light and the center of both of our lives. We consider this a private matter and neither we nor any of our friends or family will have further comment. We ask for compassion and respect from the media and the public.”

    Over the years, the marriage between the international celebrity and the daughter of the Kennedy dynasty has come under close scrutiny, especially during the 2003 recall of Gov. Gray Davis, when The Times reported on Schwarzenegger’s lengthy history of groping women. At the time, Shriver defended her husband, helping lift him to victory in the free-for-all contest.

    Since Schwarzenegger left office, it had seemed as though the two were living separate lives. Shriver, a former contributing anchor on NBC’s “Dateline,” has worked on her women’s empowerment website, guest edited an issue of Oprah Winfrey’s magazine and promoted causes near to her heart, such as Alzheimer’s research. She struggled with the death of her father, Sargent Shriver, in January, and took her son Patrick and some of his friends on an East Coast college tour in April.


  25. rikyrah says:

    May 09, 2011
    The fallout begins

    The Times notes John Boehner’s desperate fundraising intercession in his party’s “struggling campaign” for NY’s 26th Congressional, a “heavily Republican” district previously and chiefly known for its fit, hairy, naked congressman with an unfortunate knack for operating cellphone cameras when horny and bored.

    The 26th might next be known as the GOP’s Stalingrad.Boehner’s candidate, Jane Corwin, was “a popular state lawmaker who experts in both parties had once thought would win handily,” but whose incomprehensible support for Paul Ryan’s incomprehensible budget — i.e., Medicare’s abolition — has forced “her advantage in the race [to] all but disappear.”I should say.

    According to Politico on Friday, Corwin now possesses virtually no lead over her Democratic opponent, Kathy Hochul; they’re tied 31-30, respectively, “with Jack Davis, an independent candidate running on the Tea Party ballot line, picking up 26 percent.”

    Tea Partier Davis, by the way, is opposed by Tea Party Express, which in a recent email called Corwin its “conservative candidate.” Go get ’em, Jack. Now if only the Republican Party would repudiate the Republican candidate and the Democratic Party would renounce the Democratic candidate, politics would make sense again.

    One other thing. In 2008, when she was elected to the State Assembly, Corwin was 44 years old. Her campaign biography says by that time she had “spent 36 years as a successful businesswoman.”

    A child prodigy, no doubt.


  26. Ametia says:

    Hey SG2 & 3 Chics community, PBO will be in Texas today!

    2:40 PM PBO arrives in El Paso, Texas for immigration speech

  27. Ametia says:

    The Rejected WindfallPublished: May 9, 2011

    After Gov. Rick Scott of Florida thoughtlessly rejected $2.4 billion in federal aid for a high-speed rail line, he claimed last month that he was doing a huge favor for the national Treasury, which he expected would give away the money in tax cuts. That was nonsense, of course; Mr. Scott was really doing a favor for train passengers in the Northeast, Midwest and California, which were given $2 billion of his money on Monday for better service.

    Florida voters might want to think about that decision as they sit in traffic jams, burning up $4-a-gallon gasoline. In fact, some of them clearly have thought about it because Mr. Scott now has some of the worst approval ratings of a Florida official in the last decade.

    He has joined other newly elected Republican governors so rigidly opposed to the Obama administration that they are willing to harm their states to score points. The result is a crazy quilt of state relationships with Washington, stitched more with ideology than reason.

    None of the money in Monday’s announcement will be going to Wisconsin, for example, where Gov. Scott Walker has also decided that his strapped state could do without rail improvements and the construction jobs that go with them. Nor will it go to Ohio, where Gov. John Kasich preferred rejectionism to the improvement of rail service among the state’s largest cities, which could have produced 16,000 jobs.

    Instead, it will go to 15 states that have more farsighted leadership, who understand the important role federal dollars can play in stimulating the economy, moving people quickly from place to place and reducing tailpipe emissions. Some of those states are led by Republicans: Gov. Rick Snyder of Michigan happily stood beside Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood on Monday to accept nearly $200 million to upgrade the rail line between Dearborn and Kalamazoo, the bulk of the Chicago-Detroit corridor.

    Read on


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