Tuesday Open Thread

Tommy James and the Shondells are an American rock and roll group whose period of greatest success came in the late 1960s. They had two No. 1 singles in the U.S. — “Hanky Panky” (1966) and “Crimson and Clover” (1969) — and also charted 12 other Top 40 hits, including five in the top ten: “I Think We’re Alone Now“, “Mony Mony“, “Crystal Blue Persuasion“, “Mirage“, and “Sweet Cherry Wine“.

The band formed in 1959 in Niles, Michigan, first as the Echoes, then under the name Tom and the Tornadoes, with Tommy James, then only 12, as lead singer.

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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63 Responses to Tuesday Open Thread

  1. Ametia says:

  2. Rick Santorum And Universal Health Services: Presidential Hopeful Serves On Board of Hospital Chain Being Sued By DOJ


    WASHINGTON — Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, who announced his bid for president Monday, has spent the past four years serving on the board of Universal Health Services Inc. (UHS), one of the country’s largest and most troubled hospital chains.

    It turns out Santorum may have had a more personal stake in railing against President Barack Obama’s signature health care legislation and beating the drum for less government intrusion in our health care system. Both federal and state officials have routinely cited UHS for a seemingly endless number of violations, ranging from Medicaid fraud to patient neglect and abuse. Investigations have uncovered everything from riots to rape to homicide at UHS facilities.

  3. Update

    At least 20 dismembered bodies, possibly children, found in mass Texas grave


    Hardin, Tex. – On Tuesday, Texas authorities announced at least 20 dismembered bodies were found in a mass grave in Liberty County.

    Initially cadaver dogs were brought to a property in Hardin – 50 miles northeast of Houston – after a tip was received by law enforcement regarding buried bodies.

    Liberty County Sheriff’s officials announced they found blood on the property.

    A state law enforcement source told the Houston Chronicle, “All we know is the sheriff’s department received a call about a mass grave… with several bodies… They went and checked it, and there was nothing there. The caller went back and said, ‘No, you went to the wrong house.’”

    The source said law enforcement returned to the home and saw “something dark that could have been blood…” The substance was tested and tested positive for human blood.

    A federal source told CNN that after further investigation, at least 20 bodies were found.

    The Chronicle spoke with the property owner, Joe Bankson, who was in Dallas with his wife at the time.

    “I haven’t killed anybody… And I have a lot of friends, but I haven’t helped anybody bury any bodies,” he told the publication.

    “I haven’t killed anybody… And I have a lot of friends, but I haven’t helped anybody bury any bodies,” he told the publication.

  4. rikyrah says:

    now, this is cold and funny.

    this is the Washington equivalent of ‘Bitch, Bye.’

    Reid On Weiner: ‘I Wish I Could Defend Him But I Can’t’

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid declined to say today whether embattled Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) should step down following the revelations about his extracurricular social media adventures.

    But Reid made it clear he was not going to stand up for Weiner, who was until very recently one of the most popular Democrats among the party faithful.

    “I know Congressman Weiner,” Reid said. “I wish there was someway I could defend him but I can’t.”

    Reid declined repeated questions about whether or not Weiner should resign. Reid again dodged when asked by TPM what he tell Weiner to do if he asked him.

    “Call somebody else,” Reid said.


  5. WASHINGTON – JUNE 07: U.S. President Barack Obama (R) and first lady Michelle Obama (L) wait for the arrival of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her husband Joachim Sauer on the North Portico before a state dinner at the White House June 7, 2011 in Washington, DC. This is the first official visit by a European leader to the White House since Obama became president. Merkel will be presented with the 2010 Medal of Freedom at a state dinner tonight.

  6. OMG!

    Breaking News

    Dozens of bodies found buried in East Texas


    LIBERTY COUNTY, Texas — Dozens of bodies have been found in a mass grave in Liberty County, officials said Tuesday.

    The Liberty County Sheriff’s Office said 25 to 30 bodies were buried at the intersection of County Roads 2049 and 2048 between Hardin and Daisetta.

    The bodies are those of children, according to preliminary reports.

    The FBI was called in to assist the investigation.

    NBC-affiliate KPRC Local 2 has a crew on the way to the scene.

    • LIBERTY COUNTY, Texas — Dozens of bodies have been found in a mass grave in Liberty County, NBC-affiliate KPRC Local 2 reported Tuesday.


      The Liberty County Sheriff’s Office said 25 to 30 bodies were buried at the intersection of County Roads 2049 and 2048 between Hardin and Daisetta. KHOU reported that a tipster alerted authorities about the bodies, which were said to be dismembered.

      The bodies are those of children, according to preliminary reports, KPRC Local 2 said on its website.

      The area is largely rural with a mix of fields and small wooded areas. Law enforcement officials were staged along County Road 2048 near a house that was surrounded by trees.

      About 15 Sheriff’s Office vehicles and at least one cadaver dog are on the scene, KHOU reported.

      The Cleveland Advocate reported that authorities were seeking a search warrant in order to search a nearby home, where some of the individuals involved have been “uncooperative,” according to Capt. Rex Evans, a spokesman for the sheriff’s office.

      An FBI official says an evidence response team has been put on standby in case its needed, according to NBC News. A woman who answered the phone at the Beaumont FBI office referred all questions to the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office, which could not be immediately reached by msnbc.com for comment.

    • Ametia says:

      Have MERCY!

  7. German Chancellor Angela Merkel (R) laughs with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton during a luncheon held in Merkel’s honor at the State Department in Washington June 7, 2011.

    • Ametia says:


      Sos Clinton: “What I wouldn’t give to be on a beach in the South of France, right now.”
      Chancellor Merkel: “What I wouldn’t give to fit in a teenie, weenie, polka dot bikini!

      • Whatever it is must be funny as hell? Hillary is laughing her ass off! lol

      • Ametia says:

        Here’s the scoop on the two ladies laughter:
        A tribute to pantsuits
        Power duo don’t care what you think

        When Secretary of State Hillary Clinton went to Berlin in April for a meeting of the NATO foreign ministers, she paired a blueberry jacket with loose black pants and low heels.

        German Chancellor Angela Merkel wore identical pants and a grape-colored jacket. Posing together for photos, the shared choice of wardrobe was striking.

        Oh, the pantsuit! Clinton in her 2008 campaign suffered for her embrace of the style. Maligned and besmirched by appalled, black-clad fashion editors, Clinton’s bright, bold pantsuits also challenged journalists dying to extract a political message from her choice, without appearing sexist or undermining.

        Once installed in the State Department, Clinton carried the pantsuit forward — less with the matching pants and jacket, and more with chic, expensive accessories. It remained the sturdy uniform of the powerful female — though without the dangerous boots and close-cut jackets of her predecessor, Condoleezza Rice.

        Merkel is also a fan of the pantsuit, which is generally her work uniform. She wore one on Tuesday for her White House arrival ceremony, and also at lunch with Clinton and Vice President Joe Biden at the State Department, pairing a pale blue jacket with black pants.

        Merkel in 2009 caused a minor sensation when she showed up in pants to meet Queen Elizabeth at a formal reception. One story lamented her “perpetual pantsuit.”

        At lunch on Tuesday, Merkel presented Clinton with a framed copy of the front page of Frankfurter Allgemeine newspaper, which showed a photo of two women in pantsuits from the waist down.

        Caption: which one is Merkel and which one is Clinton? On the back was the full photo showing the two women and their similar taste in clothing.

        “And you may take it in a playful mode, madam secretary,” Merkel said, presenting her gift to Clinton. “And actually, it is a very fitting gift, because it is a gift that is only made possible by the fact that women now have also their say in politics.”


      • Ah!

        Hillary thought it was hilarious! She’s really cutting loose!

  8. Oh! Oh! Ka Pow!
    Margaret Thatcher to Sarah Palin: don’t bother dropping by
    Allies of former prime minister regard darling of Tea Party movement as a frivolous figure unworthy of an audience


    Sarah Palin wants to show to the Republican right that she is the true keeper of the Ronald Reagan flame by meeting the late president’s closest ally on the world stage.
    A meeting with Margaret Thatcher in the centenary year of Reagan’s birth would be the perfect way of launching her bid for the Republican nomination for the 2012 US presidential election.

    This is what Palin told Christina Lamb in the Sunday Times:

    I am going to Sudan in July and hope to stop in England on the way. I am just hoping Mrs Thatcher is well enough to see me as I so admire her.

    It appears that the former prime minister has no intention of meeting the darling of the Tea Party movement. Andy McSmith reported in the Independent this morning that Palin is likely to be “thwarted” on the grounds that Thatcher, 86, rarely makes public appearances.
    It would appear that the reasons go deeper than Thatcher’s frail health. Her allies believe that Palin is a frivolous figure who is unworthy of an audience with the Iron Lady. This is what one ally tells me:

    Lady Thatcher will not be seeing Sarah Palin. That would be belittling for Margaret. Sarah Palin is nuts.
    Thatcher will show the level she punches at when she attends the unveiling of a statue of Ronald Reagan outside the US embassy in Grosvenor Square on Independence day on 4 July. This is what her ally told me:

    Margaret is focusing on Ronald Reagan and will attend the unveiling of the statue. That is her level.
    No doubt a rebuff from Thatcher will delight Andrew Sullivan, the creator of The Dish blog, who regards Palin as a dangerous lightweight.

  9. rikyrah says:

    Posted at 12:22 PM ET, 06/07/2011
    GOP attacks Dems from the left, accuses them of shredding `social safety net’
    By Greg Sargent
    So it’s come to this: Now Republicans are accusing Democrats of wanting to “shred the social safety net.”

    As I’ve noted here before, Republicans have again taken to attacking Dems from the left on Medicare after doing it successfully last cycle, arguing that Democrats are the only ones who have ever voted to cut the program and insisting that Dems are intent on destroying Medicare by doing nothing to save it.

    Here is the most amazing example of this yet — a remarkable new ad from the NRCC that accuses Dem Rep. Jerry Costello of Illinois of supporting a “Democrat plan” that would “decimate” Medicare, “shred the social safety net,” and “leave seniors at risk”:

    We’ll be hearing more of this accusation against Dems, so it’s worth a look. The ad claims (emphasis mine) that Costello “backs a Democrat plan the media says would decimate Medicare.” But the source for the claim is an editorial in Investors Business Daily. The ad also says the Democratic plan would “shred the safety net.” But the USA Today editorial cited as the source makes a less direct claim: “Democrats know that the simple math of health care will eventually shred the social safety net they seek to protect.”

    The GOP claim that Dems would destroy Medicare is based on the argument that Dems would do nothing at all on Medicare, and that the trustees for Medicare and Social Security have said the programs will become insolvent sooner than expected. Dems counter that they have already passed a slew of Medicare reforms in the Affordable Care Act (even if you argue that they are insufficient, Dems want them to be the basis for further reforms), and that they’re currently involved in the Biden-led deficit reduction talks, which are expected to deal with Medicare.

    More broadly, the fact that Republicans are now attacking Democrats from the left on Medicare amounts to an acknowledgment that Dems have won the debate over Ryancare. Democrats have successfully cast the battle over Medicare as one between those who would save the program and those who would destroy it — or at least transform it so fundamentally that it would cease to exist. The GOP response is to muddy the waters by claiming that both sides agree Medicare needs to be cut and that the only difference is over the details. Indeed, Republicans have now taken to claiming that unlike the Dem plan, Ryancare wouldn’t cut Medicare at all; it would merely reform it. In short: Cutting Medicare is now bad; defending it from cuts is good.

    This new GOP ad takes this to its logical conclusion: Cutting the “social safety net” is now bad; defending the social safety net is now good. Republicans are now the bleeding heart liberals, and Dems
    are the ones who would throw granny into the street to starve.

    By Greg Sargent | 12:22 PM ET, 06/07/2011


  10. rikyrah says:

    30 million people have gone missing, again
    by Kay

    The actual, as opposed to imaginary, health care plan that Paul Ryan put forth and the entire Republican Party signed onto (pdf) has many, many pieces but I’d like to point to the provisions for covering the uninsured. There aren’t any. The GOP health care plan repeals the parts of the PPACA that cover the uninsured, and replaces them with nothing.

    Considering that we just had a two year debate on some hypothetical, abstract group we called “the uninsured” I’m a little confused as to why they aren’t popular anymore. The uninsured didn’t really go away. Nothing changed for them when Paul Ryan shot to stardom. Ryan’s awesome charisma is apparently powerful enough to completely eclipse the (formerly) urgent needs of tens of millions of people. That’s a little disconcerting. Where’d they go?

    Ryan’s plan repeals the PPACA, except for the portion where 500 billion or so is cut from the privatized portion of Medicare, Medicare Advantage. Despite what the honorable Paul Ryan is telling FOX News personalities and viewers, Ryan’s plan retains the 500 billion or so in Medicare Advantage cuts.

    Back when the uninsured were popular we discussed the provisions within the PPACA to cover the uninsured endlessly. What we didn’t do is talk about who they are, as a broad group.(pdf)

    I think the broad demographic and class information on the uninsured goes a long way towards explaining why it took 30 years to pass anything at all to address their health care access problem. I think the same information also may explain why tens of millions of people have mysteriously dropped out of the fawning media coverage of the GOP health care plan.

    This is who they are:

    More than three-quarters of the uninsured are in working families—sixty-one percent are from families with one or more full-time workers and 16% are from families with part-time workers.

    The vast majority of the uninsured are in low- or moderate-income families. In total, nine in ten of the uninsured are in low- or moderate-income families, meaning they are below 400% of poverty. The new health reform law targets these individuals through broader Medicaid eligibility and premium subsidies through health insurance exchanges for eligible individuals with incomes up to 400% of poverty that do not have access to employer sponsored insurance.

    Adults are more likely to be uninsured than children. Adults make up 70% of the nonelderly population, but more than 80% of the uninsured. Most low-income children qualify for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), but low-income adults under age 65 typically qualify for Medicaid only if they are disabled, pregnant, or have dependent children. Income eligibility levels are generally much lower for parents than for children, and adults without children are generally ineligible. Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), Medicaid will be expanded in 2014 to provide eligibility to nearly all people under age 65 with income under 138% of the federal poverty level.

    Young adults, ages 19 to 29, comprise a disproportionately large share of the uninsured, largely due to their low incomes. Young adults have the highest uninsured rate (32%) of any age group. More than half of uninsured young adults are families with at least one full-time worker, but their low incomes make it more difficult for them to afford coverage.The median income of uninsured young adults in 2008 was $15,000.

    More than half (63%) of nonelderly uninsured adults have no education beyond high school, making them less able to get higher-skilled jobs that are more likely to provide health coverage. Thosewith less education are also more likely to be uninsured for longer periods of time.Minorities are much more likely to be uninsured than whites. About one third of Hispanics are uninsured compared to 14% of whites. The uninsured rate among African-Americans (23%) is also much higher than that of whites


  11. rikyrah says:

    What Weinergate interrupted: Clarence Thomas’ (ongoing) conflict of interest scandal (links archive)

    Lost in the media frenzy over Rep. Anthony Weiner is the fact that at the same time he was Tweeting foolishness to random women, he was also the driving force behind a push to uncover potentially serious conflicts of interest on the nation’s highest court.
    We’re probably doomed to at least another full day of media hyperventilation and Breitbart agitprop (this guy gets to be on the Today Show? Really??) over Anthony Weiner’s Twitterized member, plus the inevitable parade of random women who never actually met, but exchanged sexy pictures with the Congressmen doing endless, boring interviews and getting paid for it.” And the journalistic community appears fully prepared to welcome Breitbart into the club (which is disturbing in itself.) But the much more important scandal, which Weiner was trying to bring to light, involves Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, and his ties to corporate and ideological interests with direct connections to cases that could come before the Court. And while his main concern right now is probably his marriage, and his constituents in New York, what Weiner may really have done is hand Thomas a giant, grey underwear-clad free pass.

    From a May 27 story in the Huffington Post:

    Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) spent his Friday afternoon pestering Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas for executing a classic news dump: a release of his financial disclosure filing on the eve of Memorial Day Weekend.

    The Congressman spent the day tweeting to his heart’s content, first alerting his 43,000-plus followers to the likelihood that someone on the Court was going to try and bury an embarrassing story while the world’s attention was turned toward the commute and barbecue ahead:

    “Friday dump Scotus style? I’m hearing disclosures released today. #ConflictsAbound,” he tweeted.

    Shortly thereafter, Weiner let it be known that it was Thomas whose financial disclosure filing he was awaiting. Around 4:30, he had a link to send, showing that Thomas had served on the Board of Directors for the nonprofit Horatio Alger Association and had made $10,000 for a speech at University of Minnesota School of Law.

    The real conflict, if there was one, was with his wife Ginni, who earned “Salary and benefits” from Liberty Central and Liberty Consulting — prominent Tea Party Groups. The filing also revealed that the two share several financial investments, including 1/3 interest in rental property in Liberty City, Georgia, and a 401k plan. Thomas went on to note that, “two of the Georgia rental properties have been torn down. The only remaining property is an old house in Liberty County.”


  12. rikyrah says:

    he is, a Slave Catching Coon


    Herman Cain: Most Black People Too Poor To Tea Party
    Asked about his own position as the most prominent African American in the Republican party these days, Herman Cain is fond of saying he refuses to “stay on the Democratic plantation like he’s supposed to” or that he refused to drink the liberal Kool-Aid.

    Asked why more African Americans haven’t joined him at tea party rallies and conservative conventions like the Faith And Family Conference in DC this weekend, the millionaire ex-CEO has a different explanation. African Americans, Cain told TPM, are too poor to tea party.

    “They can’t afford to,” Cain said. “So I think the first reason is economics. If you just look at the sheer economics of it.”

    “If you look at the typical income of a black family of four it’s going to be lower than a non-black or white family of four,” he explained. “Generally speaking on average, white families are much more economically prosperous than black families. So, many black families don’t have the economic flexibility to go to a CPAC conference.”

    Most tea partiers, Cain said, “own their own business, or they have the type of job where they have the flexibility where they can go to the rally.”

    “Or they’re retired,” he added.

    That’s just not the kind of job African Americans have, he said.

    “If you are a blue collar, hourly worker and you’re not the business owner, you’re not going to take off or ask your boss to take off unpaid to go to a rally,” he said.


  13. rikyrah says:

    Poll: Romney Holds Healthy Lead In South Carolina Primary
    A new survey of the South Carolina Republican primary from Public Policy Polling (D) shows Mitt Romney with the opening lead in this key Southern primary state.

    It’s a good sign for Romney, at least at this early juncture in the race, to be leading in a primary that often favors social conservatives. He must sill go through the ringer of the campaign, of course, and the fact that Gov. Nikki Haley has criticized his Massachusetts health care reform law. But that being said, he is starting out on top in a strong position.

    The initial numbers: Romney 27%, Palin 18%, Cain 12%, Gingrich 12%, Bachmann 9%, Ron Paul 7%, Pawlenty 4%, and Huntsman 2%.

    Without Palin in the race: Romney 30%, Cain 15%, Gingrich 15%, Bachmann 13%, Paul 10%, Pawlenty 5%, and Huntsman 2%.

    PPP’s Tom Jensen writes: “Romney’s formula for success in South Carolina is the same as in Iowa: dominate with the middle, lead with the center right, and avoid getting completely blown out of the water with the far right.”


  14. rikyrah says:

    House Republicans Look To Privatize Social Security

    Republican leaders left Social Security untouched in their House budget this year, but a group of GOP lawmakers are looking to fill the gap themselves with legislation that would create a voluntary privatized version of the program.

    Introduced by Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX), who also chairs the House’s campaign efforts at the NRCC, the “Savings Account For Every American Act” would allow people to immediately opt out of Social Security in favor of a private “S.A.F.E.” account. Eventually the program would expand to let employers send their matching contribution to workers’ Social Security to a “S.A.F.E.” account as well.

    “Our nation’s Social Security Trust Fund is depleting at an alarming rate, and failure to implement immediate reforms endangers the ability of Americans to plan for their retirement with the options and certainty they deserve,” Sessions said of the plan, according to The Hill. “To simply maintain the status quo would weaken American competitiveness by adding more unsustainable debt and insolvent entitlements to our economy when we can least afford it.”

    Republicans have been wary of wading back into Social Security privatization after a major push on the issue during President Bush’s second term failed to reach a vote in either the House or Senate despite there being a Republican Congress. One Freshman Representative who suggested the federal government could be rolled back to just four departments even listed protecting Social Security from privatization as one of his top causes on the 2010 trail. Among the GOP presidential candidates, Rick Santorum had tried to adopt the cause as part of his platform.


  15. rikyrah says:

    He’s not a values guy?” Weiner Must Apologize To Obama Just Like He did To That Scum Breitbart.

    That is what Weiner had said about President Obama about two and half months ago:

    The Democratic Party remains unclear as to its core policy principles, Weiner said, and part of the problem is Obama.


    “On our side is this weird squishy affirmative sense of what government should do and how we’re opposed to this cut and that cut, rather than saying, ‘Here are the things: Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, environment and education. We’re not cutting those. Those are off the table. That’s non-negotiable,'” said Weiner, adding, “We haven’t really done that very well.That’s because the president fundamentally — he’s not a values guy. He wants to try to get the best deal for the American people and that’s virtuous in its own right, but it becomes very difficult to make a strategy. There’s been much greater global strategy thinking on [progressive media] outlets, frankly, than at 1600 Pennsylvania.”

    I am disgusted with what has just transpired regarding Rep. Weiner admitted lies and his fantasizing fetish behavior and stupidity sending a picture of his _____ and I wonder what else there is we don’t know engaging women on the internet. How can a respected liberal hawk, articulate politician and someone who has a promising future become such a disgraceful sack of lying POS?

    How in the world can one claim our President who has been a champion representing American values in the most respected ways with so much integrity is “a no values guy”? Yes, I had said it then when his spewed that outburst that Weiner is full of shit and I am going to say it again and some and say it I told you so. He indeed raised to the occasion to show us that he is the one with no values flashing his underwear hard-on pictures to a stranger. I would expect a fucking idiot and stupid Republican birther to do such a thing but to think one of the most purist progressive righteous in your face kind of spokesman for the Democratic caucuses would be thinking with his pair instead of his gifted brain is heartbreaking not that I had any sympathy for his sorry ass behavior in the past but I do for his family, the Democratic party and his constituents who bestowed in him a level of trust to represent them.

    The worst and most fucking thing about all of this shit is Weiner just made one of the worst lying sack of horseshit, who does not have an ounce of integrity, Andrew Breitbart, a very rich man to continue his life long project of telling lies crystallizing a shaky career into a a legitimate one making him a fucking hero while throwing the progressive blogsphere under the bus to cover his lies. Despicable!

    What’s most despicable to hear was the apology. Under a threat from Breitbart that he will pull out his stack of other embarrassing photos, Rep. Weiner had no choice but apologizes to him to save his sorry ass from more embarrassment.

    But, the President is “a no values guy”?

    I don’t give a shit what Weiner does in his private life so long as he is honest to the people who elected him to serve but the fact he lied over and over and over again claiming his account had been hacked, he hadn’t sent the pictures, that he has hired a firm to investigate the pictures, the non-stop deception in the media, etc., makes me puke and lose whatever respect I got left for him regardless of the fact that there is nothing illegal here.

    As President Obama’s proud and relentless supporter, I tried to put our President in Weiner’s shoes to analyze the situation since my affinity to the POTUS is stronger than Weiner’s and I realize our President will never put me to shame in disgust and disappointment. Thank Goodness for that. No need to put a false equivalent or project.

    I wonder if Mr. Weiner will apologize to the President for calling him “a no values guy” as he did to Breitbart for demonizing him in the media. I hope he does after fixing his home affairs.

    Mr. Weiner has been the face of vocal progressives Democrats whether some like his approach or not. How much credibility he has left to be an effective voice is another question. Republican’s always seem to stick with theirs and some Democrats think we must stick with one of our own while being honest about our feelings. Mr. Weiner did not kill thousands of Iraqis as a result of his lies he told or outed a CIA operative to push a WMD meme to go to war costing many American’s life and trillions. He did not put others at risk with his disgraceful behavior. He just tarnished his public trust but we have many lawmakers who have tared their public trust and still serve.

    So the question is, should Rep. Weiner resign considering his relentless passion to do the peoples work even if he has lost his credibility playing everyone for a fool?

    I say let him own his shit and dig himself out of the hole. Redemption comes from within!


  16. opulent says:


    “Former Senator Alan Simpson, a co-chair of President Obama’s deficit commission, repeatedly misrepresented the commission in a column in the Washington Post. (It is possible that the piece was co-authored by Simpson’s co-chair, Erskine Bowles, a Director of Morgan Stanley. The Post’s identification says, “the writers were co-chairs of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform.”)

    The article repeatedly refers to the deficit commission’s report and recommendations. This is not true. The commission did not produce a report and never even voted on one. The column is presumably referring to the report of the co-chairs. This report was never submitted for a vote because it did not have the support of the necessary majority.”

    BAKER again!!

    Since Goolsbee is leaving, President Obama needs to bring this guy IN-House!!

    His analysis is excellent and the administration will benefit from his re-framing the BS Congress, NYT and WaPO spins.

  17. opulent says:

    Sanity! Sanity!! Sanity finally!!

    Baker gets it and tells it like it is hard core facts..this guy is good.
    Just gotta love him!
    He is soooo right.

    If is sooo wonderful to find a site that makes mincemeat of the press
    with nothing but FACTS!! yipppeeeee!

    Do NOT read the newspapers!!

    O and his site is aptly named
    BEAT the PRESS!!
    take THAT david gregory!!

    ….now how about this…? read on:

    “The NYT continues to operate under the bizarre illusion that Congress is filled with philosophers. It headlined a piece today on the stalemate over budget and economic policy, “War of Ideas on U.S. Budget Overshadows Job Struggle.” Of course Congress is actually composed of politicians who get their office by appealing to important interest groups.

    If the debate were actually one of ideas, as claimed in this article, then it would be possible to use evidence. For example, the article tells readers:

    “Republicans said the slow pace of hiring in May underscored the need for sharp cuts in federal spending and regulation to spur corporate investment. …

    “They argue that Democratic efforts to revive growth through public spending programs have failed as the economy remained weak and unemployment high almost two years after the end of the recession.

    “‘You talk to job creators around the country like we have,’ House Speaker John A. Boehner said Friday. ‘They’ll tell you the overtaxing, overregulating and overspending that’s going on here in Washington is creating uncertainty and holding them back.'”

    There are several specific testable claims in these assertions. For example, Mr. Boehner claims that overtaxing and overregulating are big problems for businesses. It would have been appropriate to ask him what he is talking about.

    Taxes are actually lower today than they were in the late 90s when the economy was growing rapidly and adding 250,000 jobs a month. If Mr. Boehner’s view is that taxes are preventing firms from adding jobs, then he must have a good reason for believing that the lower tax rates of 2011 are a bigger problem that the higher tax rates of 1996-2000. The NYT deprived its readers of Mr. Boehner’s thoughts on this key issue.

    It would also have been helpful to identify the regulations that Mr. Boehner considers to be major obstacles to hiring. There have been relatively few major increases in regulation since President Obama took office. The most important concern health care and these will have relatively little effect until 2014.

    It is not plausible that a regulation that does not take effect for another 2 and 1/2 years would discourage hiring today, especially since turnover in most businesses is rapid enough that firms can easily shed through attrition any workers that prove to be unprofitable in a context of the new health care regulations. And of course, firms could always just increase average hours and hire temps, neither of which they are doing. This suggests that the problem is lack of demand, not regulations.

    There is also research on the impact of President Obama’s stimulus package on jobs. If the NYT is going to feature the political battle as a war of ideas it should present evidence on which ideas are right. (NYT reporters have time to find this evidence, its readers generally do not.) For example, a study of the stimulus’s employment impact by two Dartmouth professors found that it likely had a larger employment effect than expected. The problem was that the stimulus was far too small, leading to a net expansion (federal stimulus minus state and local cutbacks) of government spending and tax cuts of around $150 billion a year against a contraction in annual demand in the private sector due to ”


  18. opulent says:

    LOL, I love what Baker told folks..he is on vacation and until he gets back, don’t believe anything you read in newspapers” lmao

    “It was bad enough that the Washington Post could not see the housing bubble on the way up. As a result, it totally missed the most predictable economic disaster in the history of the world.

    If anyone at the paper knew arithmetic, they would have noticed that nationwide house prices had sharply diverged from a 100-year long trend, rising by more than 70 percent in excess of the overall rate of inflation. The paper would have also noticed that there was no remotely plausible explanation for this run-up on either the demand or supply side of the housing market. They also would have noticed that rents had remained virtually flat during this period (adjusted for inflation). And, they would have noticed that the country had a record vacancy rate as early as 2002, the opposite of the shortage that would be expected if the run-up in house prices was driven by fundamentals.

    Of course, since the Post’s main (and often only) source on the housing market was David Lereah, the chief economist at the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and the author of the 2006 best seller, Why the Real Estate Boom Will Not Bust and How You Can Profit from It, it is perhaps not surprising that the Post managed to completely overlook the $8 trillion housing bubble that wrecked the economy. Lereah was paid by the NAR to promote real estate. The Post apparently thought that he was supposed to be providing unbiased assessments of the state of the housing market.

    What is perhaps is even more remarkable is that the Post, acting like a low-IQ dog, is unable to learn from its mistakes. It still relies on the new chief economist at the NAR, Lawrence Yun, as its main source of information on the housing market. And, as Dan Balz tells us in his column today, it is still utterly clueless about the housing bubble.”

    read more here:

  19. Ametia says:

    Hyperbole about Jim Crow shouldn’t obscure truth about GOP voting proposals
    By Adam Serwer

    Yesterday Democratic National Committee chair Debbie Wasserman-Shultz retracted remarks accusing Republicans of supporting voting restrictions comparable to Jim Crow. She had said this:

    “Now you have the Republicans, who want to literally drag us all the way back to Jim Crow laws and literally — and very transparently — block access to the polls to voters who are more likely to vote for Democratic candidates than Republican candidates. And it’s nothing short of that blatant.”

    These remarks show a startling lack of historical perspective. Jim Crow voting restrictions weren’t merely characterized by institutional barriers to voting — those barriers were reinforced by the very real threat of violence, tacitly and sometimes explicitly supported by local authorities.

    But while the analogy was inappropriate, Wasserman-Shultz was absolutely right that Republicans have used their new majorities in statehouses to erect institutional barriers to voting that are more likely to disadvantage Democratic-leaning constituencies, minorities in particular. Recent Republican proposals have or would put in place onerous voter ID requirements, curtail early voting, and prevent students from casting ballots where they go to school. These proposals are costly and could disenfranchise hundreds of thousands if not millions of voters, but most of those affected are more likely to vote for Democrats. Republicans have invoked the specter of voter fraud to justify the restrictions, but the type of voter fraud these laws are designed to address are extremely rare — the Bush administration, despite pursuing the issue vigorously, never produced more than a handful of voter fraud prosecutions.

    There’s also something rich about Republicans lecturing Wasserman-Shultz on historical perspective. After all, they’ve spent the last several years building an absurd narrative of white racial grievance, sometimes drawing explicit comparisons between America under Obama and Jim Crow. Nowhere has this manifested more absurdly than in association with the New Black Panther Voter intimidation case, which conservatives used to allege a conspiracy between the White House and a black separatist group. Jennifer Rubin, who was at the forefront of publishing such innuendo and has spent the last two years tossing outrageous accusations of racism at the Obama administration, now insists that Wasserman-Schultz didn’t go far enough in retracting her analogy, writing that restating the “Republicans are racists” line in less flashy terms “is still a slur.” This is coming from the same person who suggested Attorney General Eric Holder was guilty of racism when he pointed out, accurately, that the New Black Panther case was not at all comparable to what black people faced in the South prior to the 1960s. Rubin really doesn’t have much room to lecture Wasserman-Shultz on historical perspective — or even on tossing around frivolous accusations of racism.

    The GOP’s nationwide effort to pass laws that would disproportionately affect minorities’ access to the ballot box is very real. And Wasserman-Shultz’ hyperbole shouldn’t obscure that.


    • opulent says:

      I am still trying to figure out why the statement was inappropriate..it seemed to be right on target given all the ways the South used Jim Crow laws to prevent blacks from voting.

      So please help me out…what was inappropriate about it?

    • Ametia says:

      Exactly, Opulent. There wasn’t anything inappropriate about what DWS said at all. The GOP scream foul, when they’re hit with blatant TRUTHS like this one. voter suppression, poll taxs and voter IDs, c’mon now. looks, smells, and tastes like JIM CROW to me!

      • opulent says:

        I cannot get enough of this Baker guy!! He is just ripping to shreds all the media and political spin, and so concise with unassailable facts. His write ups are just uncontestable.

        Lovin it!!

        Backing up DebbieWS

        On Medicare:

        “In keeping to this “truth lies in the middle” approach, AP’s Fact Check criticized Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the chair of the Democratic National Committee, for attacking Representative Paul Ryan’s plan for Medicare, which was adopted by the Republican House. Fact Check criticizes Wasserman for:

        “falsely accusing the GOP of pushing a proposal that tells the elderly ‘you’re on your own’ with health care and that lets insurers deny coverage to the sick.”

        Fact Check goes on to quote Wasserman as saying about the Ryan plan:

        “‘You know what, you’re on your own. Go and find private health insurance in the health care insurance market; we’re going to throw you to the wolves and allow insurance companies to deny you coverage and drop you for pre-existing conditions. We’re going to give you X amount of dollars, and you figure it out.'”

        It then tells readers:

        “THE FACTS: First, the Ryan plan explicitly forbids insurance companies from denying coverage to anyone who qualifies for Medicare, including those who have pre-existing illnesses. Second, it does not merely send money to the elderly and leave them to their own devices in arranging for medical care.

        “The plan calls for Medicare to stay the same for people 55 and older. But starting in 2022, new beneficiaries would get their health insurance from competing private insurers instead of from the government. The government would offer subsidies to pay for the coverage and set standards that insurers must follow. One condition, says the plan, is that participating insurers “agree to offer insurance to all Medicare beneficiaries, to avoid cherry-picking and ensure that Medicare’s sickest and highest-cost beneficiaries receive coverage.”

        “Nor would the government merely send ‘X amount of dollars’ to the elderly and let them figure out whether they can afford coverage. The subsidies would go to the plan selected by the beneficiary.”

        While Fact Check is correct on the treatment of pre-existing conditions, it is wrong to imply that the Ryan plan in any way guarantees coverage. According to the Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) projections, the cost of a Medicare equivalent plan for a person at age 65 would be equal to 44 percent of the median person’s income by 2030. It would have risen to 68 percent of the median 65-year old’s income by 2050. (This ignores the fact that the plan increases the age of eligibility to 67 by 2046. )

        Health care costs are higher for older retirees. CBO’s projections imply that by 2050 the cost of a Medicare equivalent plan for someone age 75 would be 143 percent of the median 75-year-old’s income and 200 percent of the median 85-year-old’s income. Given the huge gap between the cost of care and the ability of seniors to pay it is wrong to imply, as Fact Check does, that the Ryan plan in any way ensures that seniors will get decent coverage. As Wasserman claimed, if the Ryan subsidy is insufficient to pay for care, the plan tells seniors that they are on their own.

        The truth does not always lie in the middle. Fact Check would have known this if it had bothered to analyze the CBO projections before criticizing Representative Wasserman.

  20. Ametia says:

    Looking forward to the State dinner tonight with Chancellor Merkel! :-)

    • opulent says:

      I am also wondering why Merkel is so frosty towards President Obama. Haven’t forgot her not allowing the Brandenburg backdrop for a speech.

      She sure seemed to be right cozy with Dubya, could it be she likes dumb men and can’t handle smart ones…is she a female version of chauvinism?

  21. Ametia says:


  22. Ametia says:


    June 6, 2011
    Thousands flee wind-whipped Arizona wildfires

    Smoke from massive blaze casts haze over towns as far away as Iowa; 360-square-mile fire still uncontrolled

    SPRINGERVILLE, Arizona – Stiff winds whipped up a gigantic blaze in the mountains of eastern Arizona, forcing the evacuation of a third resort town and casting a smoky haze over states as far away as Iowa.

    Winds of about 30 mph, with gusts above 60 mph, blew heavy smoke from the fire in the picturesque town of Greer, where most of the 200 fulltime residents had already fled. Everyone still there and in nearby area known as Sunrise were ordered to leave Monday afternoon.

    Pictures: Arizona wildfires

    “It’s heartbreaking,” Allan Johnson, owner of the 101-year-old Molly Butler Lodge in Greer, the oldest in the state, said of the fire barreling down on the resort town. He was pessimistic about the chances of saving the lodge and the hundreds of vacation homes in the area.


  23. Ametia says:

    • opulent says:

      Abortion and prostitution are similar in that..no matter how many laws are against it…it’s still gonna happen, only think is that it becomes more dangerous and unsafe for those who do so.

  24. Ametia says:

    Posted at 07:28 AM ET, 06/07/2011
    Wonkbook: Why Goolsbee is leaving
    By Ezra Klein

    This can’t be a fun time to serve as a White House economist. Almost 60 percent of Americans believe the recovery has not begun and give the president poor marks on his handling of both the economy and the deficit. A majority of independents “strongly” disapprove of the White House’s efforts. To an economist, the causality is clear: people are angry about the weak recovery, and so a government that hasn’t done enough to counteract the second-worst financial crisis in the last century needs to do more. But public disapproval makes doing more impossible. In fact, by empowering congressional Republicans, its made doing less — moving prematurely to austerity — a virtual certainty.

    We may be stuck in an economic crisis, but we’re long past the point of being interested in what economists have to say about ending it. Last weekend, Republicans succeeded in forcing Nobel-prize winning economist Peter Diamond to withdraw his nomination to serve on the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors. Their reasoning? He was unqualified. For two years now, economists on both sides of the political aisle have been begging Congress to cut the obvious deal: significant short-term stimulus paired with two or three or four times as much long-term deficit reduction. We’re nowhere near cutting that deal. About half of official Washington is now pretending that tax cuts have nothing to do with deficits and tax increases have no place in closing deficits, a position even conservative economists consider extreme.

    Read on


  25. Ametia says:

  26. Ametia says:

    Good Morning, Everyone! :-)

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