Serendipty SOUL | Friday Open Thread | “Old School Week”

Wiki: The Delfonics are a pioneering Philadelphia soul singing group, most popular in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Their most notable hits include “La-La (Means I Love You)”, “Didn’t I (Blow Your Mind This Time)”, “Break Your Promise,” “I’m Sorry,” and “Ready or Not Here I Come (Can’t Hide from Love)”. Their hit songs were all written by songwriter and producer Thom Bell and lead vocalist and founder William Hart.

Their songs have been used extensively in film soundtracks, the most notable being Quentin Tarantino’s 1997 movie Jackie Brown, in which “La-La (Means I Love You)” and “Didn’t I Blow Your Mind” underscore the pivotal relationship between Pam Grier and Robert Forster. The film helped create a borderline cult following for the group and their songs.

Their songs have been sampled extensively by various hip-hop and rap artists including: The Wu-Tang Clan, The Notorious B.I.G., Nas, Boyz II Men, Missy Elliott and DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince.

In addition, their songs have been covered by numerous other performers, including Aretha Franklin, The Jackson 5, Patti LaBelle, New Kids on the Block, Todd Rundgren, Prince, Swing Out Sister and The Manhattan Transfer.

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68 Responses to Serendipty SOUL | Friday Open Thread | “Old School Week”

    Watch GOP Candidates Expound On Their Poor Backgrounds

    It is a staple of modern political campaigning to play up your humble roots to connect with voters. Perhaps seeking to draw a contrast with President Barack Obama, who some have deemed “elitist,” GOP presidential candidates took many opportunities to mention their simple beginnings in 2011.

    The mashup above of campaign moments features Michele Bachmann, Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Herman Cain, Jon Huntsman and Mitt Romney.

    Romney and Huntsman grew up in very wealthy families. But, like their fellow candidates, both of them speak of families who are having trouble “making ends meet” and the pain of the middle class.

  2. rikyrah says:

    background: Don Cheadle wrote that he was ‘ disappointed’ in the President. That he wasn’t ‘gangster’ enough.

    Here is a twitter response:


    Gail Leach (@Pnthrgrlgail)
    Posted Friday 30th December 2011 from Twitlonger

    Study history , Mr. Cheadle. Change has never come through “seismic shifts”. Not the end of slavery, not the end of Jim Crow. Change has come through clear and steady leadership and continuing to move forward even when others throw every blockade in your way. Our President has done that. Steady, clear-eyed leadership that never loses sight of the big picture and never gives the opposition the satisfaction of reverting to the negative stereotype of a “gangster”. See while being “gangster” to you involves seeing the President of the United States behave as a thug, “gangster” for me is about seeing him go to the Republican retreat in a televised exchange where he intellectually and rhetorically handed out a beat down that has the Republicans even to this day not willing to engage him again in the same forum.

    “Gangster” for me is seeing the President of the United States get through the repeal of DADT, the START Treaty and the debt ceiling compromise all the while holding none of the winning cards but just through his sheer will and us. Of the bully pulpit get it done. “Gangster” for me is the President of the United States when faced with the loss of Senator Kennedy’s seat to Republican Scott Brown didn’t give up the fight to pass the Affordable Care Act. He fought harder, he got it passed. “Gangster” for me is seeing the President Of the United States stand before a crowd of grieving people whether it be from a gunman’s mad rampage against his fellow soldiers, a crazed gunman’s rampage that killed 6 people including a nine year old girl and injuring a Congresswoman, or the fury of Mother Nature and give comfort to the multitude. “Gangster” for me is the President of the United States standing in front of a roomful of reporters giving a comedy routine scorching the man that questioned his citizenship while all the while knowing he’d given the order to take out Osama bin Laden.

    “Gangster” for me is having a President of the United States that uses the retort” Ask Osama bin Laden” when questioned about his bona fides as a Commander in Chief. So I say to you, Mr. Cheadle, “ask Osama bin Laden” if President Barack Hussein Obama is “gangster”.

    PS. Hard to put people in the financial disaster in jail when what they did wasn’t illegal as so eloquently explained by President Obama on 60 minutes.

    • Ametia says:

      Cheadle needs some work in Hollywood. THE END.

      • newcenturywoman1 says:

        Emilia over at Hoo’s Left penned a great response to Cheadle’s cheesy chatter: I left the following message on her blog regarding my take on Cheadle’s attempt to save face:

        Last night I caught the tail end of that twitter war between Don Cheadle and a small but unrelenting posse of sista bloggers, and I tell you they gave Cheadle a run for his money. They roughed him up big time (with only true facts about the President) and he deserved it! I had hoped that the extended response Cheadle promised last night would show a redeemed man today, but honestly I find his extended reponse worse than his live interaction on twitter. I mean can you believe that after having a full night’s sleep to think about it, Cheadle would come up with the weak ass and uninformed explanation that he gave? You would think he would have taken some of the commenters’ advice for recommended reading. But noooo, this dude basically stuck to his “gangster” guns and showed his ignorance.

        I’ve never been a big fan of Don Cheadle as an actor. And seeing him in this new light has left me even less impressed.

      • newcenturywoman says:

        (Sorry if this is a duplicate post; I was trying out a new email address with gmail and wasn’t sure if my first post would go through.)

        Emilia over at Hoo’s Left penned a great response to Cheadle’s cheesy chatter: I left the following message on her blog regarding my take on Cheadle’s attempt to save face:

        Last night I caught the tail end of that twitter war between Don Cheadle and a small but unrelenting posse of sista bloggers, and I tell you they gave Cheadle a run for his money. They roughed him up big time (with only true facts about the President) and he deserved it! I had hoped that the extended response Cheadle promised last night would show a redeemed man today, but honestly I find his extended reponse worse than his live interaction on twitter. I mean can you believe that after having a full night’s sleep to think about it, Cheadle would come up with the weak ass and uninformed explanation that he gave? You would think he would have taken some of the commenters’ advice for recommended reading. But noooo, this dude basically stuck to his “gangster” guns and showed his ignorance.

        I’ve never been a big fan of Don Cheadle as an actor. And seeing him in this new light has left me even less impressed.

        (Sorry for the duplicate post; I was trying out a new email address.)

  3. Ametia says:

    December 29, 2011 06:38 PM
    Andrea Mitchell Cites Recent Gallup Poll to Paint Romney as Centrist and Obama as Liberal
    By Heather

    Polls and the corporate media’s immediate instinct to jump all over their results in order to push one of their favorite memes, that America is a “center-right” country, is yet another example of why we do not have a liberal media in the United States. Gallup and USA Today recently released a new poll which you can read the results of here — Americans See Views of GOP Candidates Closer to Their Own.

    Naturally Mrs. Greenspan was more than happy to report that this is supposed to show that most Americans are ideologically aligned with Mitt Romney and that President Obama was further to the left than most of the public.

    The poll by Gallup did not ask anyone what their views on specific issues were. They asked them to self-identify what their ideology is. Media Matters did a lengthy report on this back in 2007 showing why polls like the one cited by Andrea Mitchell here don’t paint an accurate picture of what most American’s political leanings are which you can read here — The Progressive Majority: Why a Conservative America is a Myth.

    There are lots of charts and data there, but this portion sums up some of their findings very nicely:


    If Americans are so progressive, why don’t more say so?

    When asked for evidence, advocates of the idea that America is a conservative country will often cite the fact that polls show more people labeling themselves as “conservative” than “liberal.” […]

  4. Bootlicker Alert

    Former Democratic Rep. Artur Davis talks party-switching

    Former Democratic congressman Artur Davis, who has been a thorn in the side of Democrats in the aftermath of his loss in the 2010 Alabama gubernatorial primary, is a man without a political party.

    In an interview with The Fix, Davis openly speculated about running for office as an independent or even a Republican. In both cases, he suggested his decision not to make the switch has as much to do with the difficulties involved as any desire he has to remain a Democrat.

    “I’ve heard some people at the national level encouraging me to run as an independent for my old office,” Davis said, referring to the congressional seat he left to run for governor. But he said his home state makes it more difficult than almost any other state to run as an independent. “Alabama is not friendly to independent candidacies.”

  5. Obama Campaign Pounces on Matt Romney Joke as Evidence Father Pandering to ‘Dead-Ender Fringe Extremists’

    In a fundraising email, Obama 2012 campaign manager Jim Messina pounced like a jungle cat on a remark made by Mitt Romney’s son Matt, 40, seeking to paint his father as appealing to extreme elements.

    “Friend,” wrote Messina in a mass email to supporters, “You’ve got to hear this. Asked at a Romney campaign event whether his father would follow decades of precedent and release his tax returns, Mitt Romney’s adult son Matt quoted the most recent Tea Party line, saying: ‘… As soon as President Obama releases his grades, and birth certificate, and sort of a long list of things, then maybe he will.’”

    Asserted Messina, “This is how the Romney campaign thinks it’s going to win the Republican primary: by pandering to the dead-ender fringe of extremists who still question where the President was born. We can’t make them rewrite their talking points. But we can drive up the cost of this kind of politics.”

    Earlier today Matt Romney made the remark in New Hampshire, as posted in video by the Concord Monitor, saying that he had “heard someone suggest the other day that” when President Obama released that information then his father would release his tax returns.

    Matt Romney, the 2nd of the five Romney boys, soon tweeted somewhat apologetically: “I repeated a dumb joke. My bad.”

    • Don’t lie! You weren’t joking, mofo! You got called on your pandering and played it off as a joke.

      • Ametia says:

        Matt Romney’s white priviledged tighties are showing.

      • newcenturywoman says:

        You’re right, SG2. That spawn of Mitt Romney was not joking. Not any more than Huckabee was joking 3 years ago at an NRA convention when he faked hearing a gun go off and said what he heard was the sound of then Sen. Barack Obama getting shot at. These racist assholes make me sick!

        How much longer are they gonna keep getting away with the “Oh, I was just joking” excuse as a way of spreading their vile rhetoric about our President and his family? And the nerve of Romney’s son to apologize on Twitter with the stereotypical response of “my bad.” SMH

      • Is this guy stupid or what? He got caught pandering to the extreme fringe and took an ass whipping for it.

        And the “my bad” comment…like father, like son. Both are morons!

  6. Top 10 Greatest GOP Moments of 2011

  7. rikyrah says:

    Making Governing Impossible
    by John Cole

    Apparently the WH has agreed to delay their request to increase the debt limit so the Republicans will have an opportunity to grandstand and attempt to renege on their previous agreements:

    When the administration announced this week that it intended to initiate the debt ceiling increase by December 30, it stumbled into problem. Congress isn’t set to return from winter recess until January 17 — beyond the 15 day window it has under the law to weigh in on the debt limit increase. Had the administration followed through, Congress — but particularly Republicans — would have had to choose between returning from recess early (and thus entering a big public fight with the administration) and abandoning the debt limit vote.

    Seeking to avoid that conflict, the administration will delay the debt limit request by a few days, according to a senior administration official.

    In an official statement, White House spokesman Josh Earnest says, “we have been asked by bicameral leadership of Congress to delay certification in order to give both houses time to consider when votes may occur given the current Congressional schedule. The President has agreed to Congress’ request to delay submission of the certification, which he has flexibility to do under the [debt limit law]. The Administration is in discussions with leaders in both houses to determine the best timing for submission of the certification and any subsequent votes in the two houses.”

    The most important takeaway from this is the end of the article:

    The substantive consequence here is that the Treasury Department will once again have to undertake some of the extraordinary measures they used in July to assure interest on the debt is paid on time.

    Beyond that, it’s another illustration of the clumsy nature of the debt limit agreement, which imposed a number of substantive and procedural requirements on what was until this year a routine act of Congress.

    Whenever you are confused as to why the Republicans seem to be doing something that makes no sense or is crazy, you really need to come back to this. The goal of the Republicans is not good governance. The goal of the Republicans is to make governing by a Democrat impossible and to beat Obama in 2012. It’s the only thing they really, really care about.

  8. rikyrah says:

    Memo To America: Ron Paul’s Ideology Is As Dangerous As The Tea Party

    Every election year brings out one or two quirky candidates that appear to have little chance of winning more than a seat on a local city council or if they are fortunate, a seat in the House of Representatives. This year, quirky candidates are extremist, main-stream Republicans seeking the presidency and although they may not reach the White House, they are gaining traction among Christian conservatives and anti-government groups that gave rise to the tea party in 2010 and resulted in Republicans taking control of the House. The 2010 elections gave Americans a glimpse of what electing extremists to positions of power means for the nation and although the tea party’s popularity is in decline, another quirky candidate is rising in popularity among conservatives and some mainstream Republicans.

    Ron Paul’s third run for the presidency is different than in previous years and his Libertarian policies have caught up to Republicans who embrace his small government, state’s rights, and decreased taxes mantra that Paul has espoused for years. Ron Paul is no longer a fringe candidate, but his Libertarian ideology, if implemented, is as extreme as any tea party candidate and ultimately just as dangerous for America and its people. It is unfortunate that more Americans lack an understanding of Libertarianism because even Paul’s supporters would rail against some of his remedies for the country if he were elected president.

    It has been well-reported that Paul’s racist views from the past are cause for concern, and last week he flaunted an endorsement of an anti-gay evangelical preacher who advocated for capital punishment as a “restorative” measure to prevent homosexuality. Paul removed the press release announcing the anti-gay preacher’s endorsement, but the preacher’s reason for endorsing him informs the dangers of electing a Libertarian who would give states latitude to implement harsh biblical laws. Under a Libertarian’s vision for America, giving individual states the right to make and enforce their own laws heralds a dark time for the country and its citizens.

    Libertarians envision a country with every citizen fending for themselves with no federally enforced equal rights protections or programs to maintain and build roads, schools, hospitals, or regulations to protect consumers. In fact, Ron Paul said that as president, he would immediately eliminate five federal departments of Energy, Commerce, Housing and Urban Development, Interior, and Education. He would end war spending and recall all U.S. forces from overseas, end foreign aid, and abolish the IRS and Federal Reserve. Paul’s vision for America is 50 states that make up their own laws irrespective of constitutional rights, and leave Americans at the mercy of the wealthy elite. If one talks to a Ron Paul supporter, they support the philosophy of anything goes and everyone is on their own, but upon further review and reflection, few Americans really advocate for being left on their own.

    Libertarianism is a wealthy person’s dream with no regulations or taxes and no concern for anyone but themselves. The wealthy have financial security to pay for private schools, private security, private fire departments, private roads, and private airports and for them, go it on your own works well; especially when their corporations avoid regulations, consumer protection laws, and taxes. However, for everyone else, Libertarianism means a return to frontier America where each family provides all the services the government provides today. There are few Americans who can afford to individually pay for services their tax dollars provide as part of being an American citizen, and yet it is astonishing the number of supporters Ron Paul has amassed over the years

  9. rikyrah says:

    December 30, 2011 9:53 AM

    Voted-For Rights
    By Ed Kilgore

    There’s been a lot of richly-earned laughter this week at the expense of Republican presidential candidates (mainly Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry) who are whining about not being able to get on the March 6 primary ballot in Virginia. These worthies certainly haven’t expressed any sympathy for voters struggling to exercise their right to vote for candidates, which their party has been aggressively fighting to restrict in state after state.

    But the irony and hypocrisy are worse than what immediately meets the eye. As Ezra Klein notes, presidential candidates have a lot more resources for gaining access to the ballot than individual voters:

    Perry is an experienced politician who has hired a professional staff for the express purpose of navigating the logistical hurdle of ballot access. And he still failed to make the Virginia ballot, despite the fact that the rules were well-known and unchanged since the last election.
    In Texas, however, Perry has sharply changed the rules, changed them on people who do not have a staff dedicated to helping them vote, and in fact made it harder for outside groups to send professionals into the state to help potential voters navigate the new law.

    Yeah, it’s hard to get worked up about the denial of the rights of politicians to be voted for by citizens whose right to vote seems so disposable.

  10. rikyrah says:

    Michael Tomasky: Why Mitt Romney’s Opportunity Tack Won’t Work
    Dec 27, 2011 4:45 AM EST

    Mitt’s new opportunity shtick is a familiar trick from the GOP’s well-thumbed playbook. Michael Tomasky on why it won’t work in 2012.

    So Mitt Romney, writes Thomas Edsall in The New York Times, wants to make the election about entitlements vs. opportunity. He warns darkly against a government that “provides every citizen the same or similar rewards, regardless of education, effort and willingness to innovate, pioneer or take risk.” This is the sort of thing that used to scare the bejesus out of Democrats and still does frighten some of them, but it needn’t. Romney’s error in this framing is one Republicans often make—assuming that they are the “real Americans,” and Democrats are in some way fake Americans, and therefore all of middle America must agree with them.

    Romney’s approach is clever up to a point. It does successfully blend more traditional Republicanism with Tea Party resentment (reflecting, perhaps, the way in which this supposedly “new” Tea Party is really just the same old anger at poor people and nonwhite people, outfitted anew in sans culottes). He uses the lie Republicans have used for many, many elections, that liberals and Democrats insist not on equality of opportunity but equality of result. And he invokes “government dependency”—a well-turned locution I must confess, those being two pretty unappealing words to most people. If he becomes the nominee, and if he can get most Americans to see the election as a choice between the candidate who wants Big Daddy government to look after every aspect of your life and the candidate who insists on your freedom to pursue wealth and liberate yourself from any obligation to those below you, then he’ll be in pretty good shape.
    But there exist mountains of evidence that most Americans don’t think the way Republicans want them to. As Edsall notes: “The American public is highly conflicted on the subject of providing aid to people in need. While strongly opposed to ‘welfare,’ decisive majorities support more spending in key public policy areas. Polls conducted since 1972 by the General Social Survey show that by margins of two to one, voters consistently say too little is spent on the poor, on education, on health care, on drug treatment—the list is long.”
    And that’s just spending on the poor. Spending on the middle class enjoys far greater support. “Welfare” as we once knew it being largely off the table as a divisive political issue, the Republicans really don’t have much material to work with here. In one sense, the entire GOP approach on these issues since Ronald Reagan’s time has been to hide the actual agenda because Republicans know most people don’t agree with them. A famous memo from Paul O’Neill’s Treasury Department in early 2001 to the Bush White House told the new president and others to be careful about juxtaposing tax cuts with spending because “the public prefers spending on things like health and education over cutting taxes.”

  11. Ametia says:

    Chart of the Day
    Posted on 12/30/2011 at 12:38 pm by Bob Cesca
    Of all ideological labels, Americans love “progressive” the most.

  12. Ametia says:

    Lawrence O’Donnell Compares GOP Candidates To Porn Producers
    VIDEOby Nando Di Fino | 8:09 am, December 30th, 2011

    “The only people who hate regulation even a little bit more than Republican presidential candidates are porn producers.”

    Watch it here:

  13. theonlyadult:

    @chucktodd Are you going to call Romney’s racism? Na, of course not. It’s not like you’re a journalist or anything.

  14. Talking Points Memo:

    Mitt Romney’s son thinks Obama should release his birth certificate, grades

  15. Mitt Romney’s Marie Antoinette Charge ‘Laughable’ Coming From ‘Quarter-Billion-Dollar Man’: DNC

    “It is actually laughable that the ‘Quarter-Billion-Dollar Man’ would call President Obama out of touch — and use the example of a French monarch to make the point,” DNC spokeswoman Melanie Roussell said in a statement to The Huffington Post on Thursday evening. “This is the same guy who joked that he was ‘unemployed,’ offered a $10,000 bet as casually as one might buy a cup of coffee, and said ‘corporations are people.’ He’s also the same person who, as a former corporate buyout specialist for Bain Capital, made his fortune firing thousands of workers, cutting benefits, bankrupting American companies and outsourcing jobs overseas. He’s the one who won’t release his tax returns — most likely because we would all learn that he pays a lower tax rate than middle class wage-earners. Laughable.”

  16. rikyrah says:

    December 30, 2011 8:06 AM
    Pollsters Descend on Iowa
    By Ed Kilgore

    There are three new polls of Iowa out today which mostly confirm the impression that Paul and Romney are battling for first place while Rick Santorum may be on the verge of breaking away from the other putative “true conservative” candidates, Gingrich, Perry and Bachmann. But with so many candidates bunched so closely together, almost anything could happen.

    The only two-day poll in the batch, from NBC/Marist, has Romney at 23%, Paul at 21%, Santorum at 15%, Perry at 14%, Gingrich at 13%, and Bachmann at 6%.

    Rasmussen’s results are very similar: Romney 23, Paul 22, Santorum 16, Perry and Gingrich 13, and Bachmann 5.

    Insider Advantage, as is often the case, shows things a bit differently, with Romney, Paul and Gingrich tied at 17%, Santorum at 13%, Bachmann at 12%, and Perry at 11%. IA should be praised for publishing a few crosstabs, but they do have some odd numbers, such as Bachmann running ahead of Paul among 18-29 year olds.

    In any event, these polls will feed the media beast until the big mamba-jamba, the Des Moines Register Iowa Poll, comes out on Saturday night.

  17. Jobless Claims in U.S. Hit Three-Year Low

    Fewer Americans filed applications for unemployment benefits over the past month than at any time in the past three years, a sign the U.S. labor market is on the mend heading into the new year.

    The four-week moving average for claims, a less volatile measure than the weekly figures, dropped to 375,000 last week, the lowest level since June 2008, Labor Department figures showed today in Washington. Applications (INJCJC) rose for the first time in a month in the week ended Dec. 24, climbing by a more-than- forecast 15,000 to 381,000.

    • Ametia says:

      Yet the media will not REPORT or showcase these numbers. They’d rather feed folks shyt like Kim Kardasian’s fake marriage.

      Meanwhile, our president is moving forward and TCB.

  18. Obama to visit swing state Ohio to talk economy

    President Barack Obama will visit the political battleground state of Ohio next week, ushering in the 2012 election year with a speech focused on the economy, the White House said on Thursday.

    Obama will visit Cleveland on Wednesday, just after he returns from a more than week-long vacation in Hawaii, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said.

    The president had put off his trip to Hawaii to wait for Congress to extend payroll tax cuts expiring at the end of December, which lawmakers eventually agreed to continue for only two months because of disagreements about how to offset their cost.

    Efforts to broker a full-year deal for the payroll tax cuts, which the White House has said the middle class needs until the U.S. economy heals, are expected to hang over Washington in early 2012 and may be a major theme of Obama’s Cleveland speech.

  19. Obama to hold live web chat during Iowa caucuses

    He may not be able to recapture the euphoria of his 2008 Iowa caucus win, but President Obama will have a role as the first votes of the 2012 presidential campaign are cast next Tuesday.

    The Obama campaign is mapping out plans for the president to speak to his supporters via live web chat at locations across Iowa Tuesday night. A campaign official told CBS News the effort will use technology that was not available four years ago. Screens will show the president, in Washington, communicating with people simultaneously at various gathering places in the Hawkeye State.

    Mr. Obama can be expected to sound some of the same appeals on “middle class” issues that he has used in recent speeches and his statements during the year-end fight over extending the payroll tax cut.

  20. Ametia says:

    Are You Being Tracked? 8 Ways Your Privacy Is Being Eroded Online and Off
    By David Rosen, AlterNet
    Posted on December 28, 2011, Printed on December 30, 2011

    In a recent hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Sen. Al Franken reminded his fellow Americans, “People have a fundamental right to control their private information.” At the hearing, Franken raised an alarm about Carrier IQ’s software, CIQ.

    Few people have ever heard about CIQ. Running under the app functions, CIQ doesn’t require the user’s consent (or knowledge) to operate. On Android phones, it can track a user’s keystrokes, record telephone calls, store text messages, track location and more. Most troubling, it is difficult to impossible to disable.

    Carrier IQ, located in Mountain View, CA, was founded in 2005 and is backed by a group of venture capitalists. Its software is installed on about 150 million wireless devices offered through AT&T, HTC, Nokia, RIM (BlackBerry), Samsung, Sprint and Verizon Wireless. It runs on a variety of operating systems, including the Apple OS and Google’s Android (but not on Microsoft Windows).

    At the hearing, Sen. Franken questioned FBI director Robert Muller about the FBI’s use of CIQ software. Muller assured the senator that FBI agents “neither sought nor obtained any information” from Carrier IQ.

  21. rikyrah says:

    Cam Newton Shouldn’t Give Racist Critics A Free Pass

    By Bomani Jones – Contributor

    Cam Newton had a chance to say “I told you so” to his pre-draft critics. Instead, he blamed Jamarcus Russell and Vince Young. Here’s why that was sad and stupid.

    Tim Tebow commands more attention right now, but the ESPN The Magazine’s “Next” issue has Cam Newton on its cover. Despite the criticisms of Bristol’s love affair with Tebow — which is really about America’s obsession — they know the deal. There’s a futuristic, record-breaking superstar in Charlotte, and his time is around the corner.

    But right now, his present remains an extension of his past. Newton avoided the media most of the season, so it’s almost like the movie about his life cut after the draft and resumed with Peyton Manning behind him on the all-time passing yardage list for rookies. Right next to him on rushing touchdowns for rookies? Barry Sanders.

    Cam has exceeded every reasonable expectation of him this season. He has also exposed his unreasonable critics, those who would stutter as they tried to defend themselves now. His 15-game career is enough to hold lots of feet to fires about the lingering barriers for black quarterbacks on all levels, obstacles that have been overlooked for years.

    Go back and find what gave so many pause about such a spectacular and accomplished talent. You’ll find much of it was built on one thing: nothing at all. And as long as people purport themselves as experts, they must explain being that wrong in such a familiar, problematic way. If mentally slow with a poor work ethic sounded racist in the past, someone needs to explain why baselessly saying the same in 2011 was somehow different.

    But instead, Cam blames that on Jamarcus Russell and Vince Young?


  22. rikyrah says:

    The Jayson Blair Problem
    By Ta-Nehisi Coates
    Dec 29 2011, 6:10 PM ET 70

    Bomani Jones offers a corrective to Cam Newton’s comments on racism. It’s worth also checking out the round-up of scouting reports on Newton and weighing them against his actual production. That aside, I think Jones hits on something I missed:

    Newton was often compared to Russell and Young, even Akili Smith. The only thread linking all three was race. Newton’s ability to absorb a pro-style offense after years in the spread was questioned, even though Sam Bradford, the previous No. 1 pick made the same adjustment to positive reviews. His work ethic was questioned, as if a man could simply roll out of bed and have the best season ever for a college quarterback.

    For those keeping score at home, that’s a trifecta: dumb, lazy and just like the others. For more, there’s Nolan Nawrocki’s absurd takedown, centered around Cam’s purported inability to lead, and the belief much of the league agreed with him. This was transparent, textbook racism, the same rap guys from Marlin Briscoe to Joe Gilliam to Doug Williams fought.

    “It’s just this gut feeling I have that I don’t know how great he wants to be. ” “What it really comes down to .. is football IQ and work ethic. And if he wants to be the best quarterback in the game, I’m all in. I love it. “But something tells me that he’ll be content to be a multi-millionaire who’s pretty good. And that doesn’t get it done for me.”

    I don’t think I’m revealing much when I say that it’s generally a bad idea to assess IQ and work ethic on “something” in your gut. Video here.

    Anyway, I think the fact that Russell was widely tagged as lazy” plays into Newton’s reaction. I go back to the point about representing. I think about how I felt embarrassed by Herman Cain, not because he was conservative, but because he was marketing ignorance for the White House.

    Now the reality is that Rick Santorum has the right to be ignorant, why not Herman Cain? Likewise, there is no collective pressure on Todd Marinovich to represent for white quarterbacks and not put drugs before his job. (Did people consider Marinovich “lazy?” I don’t actually remember.)

    But a lot of us don’t see it that way. If you’re like me, you were mad that any journalist at the New York Times would turn plagiarist, but you were doubly mad that Jayson Blair would “embarrass us in front of white folks.” My first reaction to reading about Tom Williams being escorted out of Yale for lying about being a Rhodes scholar was not “Wow, that’s crazy,”; but “What was this Negro thinking?”

    That actually isn’t fair and I’m not disagreeing with Jones. “Twice as good” is something you say to black children, not public policy. But this is not how you always see it in the moment. I was really pissed off at Jayson Blair, in a way that I wasn’t at Stephen Glass or Jack Kelley.

  23. rikyrah says:

    Fire Walker Chronicles: Home Field Shutout
    by Zandar

    Looks like not only will Wisconsin GOP Gov. Scott Walker get his day in court to argue that the state’s recall process is unconstitutional, but that Democrats will be locked out of the case, unable to present arguments to defend the recall.

    A judge in Wisconsin has ruled that Democratic recall organizers cannot challenge a lawsuit brought by the state GOP against election officials — a suit that claims Gov. Scott Walker’s constitutional rights are being violated by the state’s petition review process.

    This means that barring a hypothetical appeal, any continuing litigation in this matter will be conducted exclusively between the state GOP and the election board’s attorney, without the Dems themselves being able to participate and present legal arguments.

    “I was a little surprised,” said Jeremy Levinson, the attorney for the recall committee, in an interview with TPM. “It’s the first time I can recall — let me rephrase — it’s the first time I’m aware of a recall-related lawsuit where only the official who is being targeted for recall gets to be a party, and the folks who are working to recall that official are shut out of the process.”

    It does seem rather pointedly ridiculous that Walker’s argument is that the burden of challenging recall signatures is “unconstitutional” abridgement of his rights, but being able to challenge that very argument in court is apparently completely unnecessary, and that the rights of the people of Wisconsin to exercise their free speech in a state-mandated recall process doesn’t actually matter so much compared to being Governor.

    No wonder that the GOP filed the lawsuit in their home turf of Waukesha County to get a friendly judge, in this case a former GOP State Senator. The case will proceed forward next week with that same judge hearing Walker’s arguments and the motion to dismiss the case on January 5th. Meanwhile Walker and his allies are pushing to win the battle of public opinion, having already spent over a million bucks in ads fighting the recall petition in just the last six weeks.

    We’ll see how that goes.

  24. rikyrah says:

    The Real Job Creator: Obama Has Created 2.3 Million Jobs Since 2010
    In Article VI of the Constitution, it says that, “no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.” It is arguably one of the most important parts of the Constitution to protect America from becoming a theocracy. However, when a candidate’s religion is purported to be an integral part of their character it goes without saying that adherence to the perceived high moral standards inherent with devout religious men and women should reconcile with the veracity, or lack thereof, of their campaign statements. Pundits assail Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, and the other conservative Christian Republican presidential hopefuls for their rhetoric and policy positions that are contrary to their Christian beliefs, but up to this point Willard Romney has avoided criticism for contradicting his religious beliefs.

    At issue is not whether Romney’s Mormon faith is a cult or not as many Christians claim, but rather, if his Mormon beliefs permit blatant lying to earn the Republican nomination for the presidency. Romney claims that he follows the tenets of the Christian faith, and if that is indeed true (it is not entirely true), then his character becomes suspect because he is a liar. This is not an indictment of Romney’s tendency to change his position on issues at the rate most people change their underwear, but a clear charge of mendacious statements about President Obama.

    Romney’s criticisms of President Obama’s record and intentions for the country go beyond lacking veracity; they are deliberately fallacious and misleading for the sole purpose of portraying the president as an ineffectual leader and provocateur of Socialism and Communism. In fact, it is difficult to find any truth in Romney’s statements about the president leading any reasonable person to assume that Willard is not only not a Christian, but a Satanist whose belief system has as its basis lies and misinformation for the purpose of self-promotion and material enrichment. In Romney’s case, since he is already rich, his lies are for self-promotion to attain the nation’s highest office and a position of unmatched power and influence.

    One of the biggest lies Romney told is that President Obama has not created any jobs during his three years as president. Romney’s lying is to cover the truth that his former company, Bain Capital, eliminated jobs while Romney raked in millions of dollars a year even during his retirement. Romney’s plan to respond to upcoming attacks on his business acumen that depends on slashing jobs to increase profits is to lie by claiming that the president “has not created any new jobs during his tenure.” Romney said, “25 million people are out of work because of Barack Obama. And so I’ll compare my experience in the private sector where, net-net, we created over 100,000 jobs. I’ll compare that record with his record, where he has not created any new jobs.” Romney, the devout Mormon, is a liar.

    Since March 2010, the private sector added 2.3 million new jobs and “it took the Obama economy one year to create more jobs” than during George W. Bush’s presidency did in eight years. The new jobs created during the Obama Administration are due in part to the stimulus, unemployment benefit extension and payroll tax cut from December 2010. There have been public sector job losses due to state budget deficits caused by the Bush-Republican Great Recession, but Romney has promised to cut more public sector jobs by slashing government programs that will make government employees face what Romney did to employees while at Bain Capital. During Romney’s tenure as governor of Massachusetts, from 2003-2007 before the recession hit the economy, the state ranked 47th in job creation. Romney’s lack of honesty and dispensation of the truth prevents him from providing evidence that during his time a Bain he created 100,000 jobs.

  25. rikyrah says:

    The Great Right-Wing Overreach Continues
    Posted on 12/29/2011 at 6:00 pm by JM Ashby

    This is why I remain entirely unconvinced that the Republican party has any chance of winning the presidency next year.

    Officials in Troy, Michigan, worked for years to build a local transportation center, and the Obama administration agreed to fully fund the project with federal stimulus money. In fact, the local community would have received an $8.5 million grant to cover all of the costs, with no strings attached.

    But Troy’s elected leaders decided to turn down the money. Their Tea Party principles told them it was a bad idea. […]

    Troy’s ridiculous, right-wing mayor justifies the decision by saying it’s more important to pay down the federal debt than it is to create jobs in her community. This only helps underscore one of the problems with Tea Party governance: it’s often based on striking ignorance (the $8.5 million grant will now go to help create jobs in some other area, not go back to the Treasury to pay down the debt). […]

    The Troy Chamber of Commerce, which worked for years to help with the plans for the transportation center, is reportedly outraged by the city council’s stupidity, and the president of a local manufacturing company said the community could use the economic boost the transit center would have provided, but will now go without.

    It’s true that years of neglect and overlooking the fundamental rule that “all politics are local” has left the Democrat party in a position where 39 of 50 states are controlled by Republican legislatures, but it’s also true that in nearly every case of local Republican dominance, the Republicans in control have completely screwed their constituents. And this is not lost on average voters, because all politics are local.

    People may not pay attention to their state senators and representatives, but they do notice when their school board votes to slash the number of teachers at their children’s schools, or the city council votes to turn down millions, or billions, of dollars in federal grant money. It’s all fun and games until it affects you, the individual.

    The gross overreach of local Tea Party groups, backed by the likes of Governors John Kasich of Ohio, Rick Snyder or Michigan, Rick Scott of Florida, and Scott Walker of Wisconsin have done more damage to the lives of individuals in their states than any amount of political pandering and shitkicking can make up for over the next 10 months.

    I believe the result will be a greater number of people voting straight Democratic on their tickets than perhaps ever before, at least in these key battleground states. And I also believe it’s important for us to remember that the kicking and screaming of pundits and political personalities almost certainly does not represent the average voter or the 84 percent of the Democratic base who wishes to re-elect President Obama.

    The great overreach of 2011 won’t be forgotten, because they’re still overreaching.

    • Shady_Grady says:

      The main reason that Troy turned down that transportation hub was the worry that it would bring in people who were of a different demography , so to speak, than the majority of Troy residents.

      • Ametia says:

        Hi Shady; Happy New Year. Yepper; NIMBY. We OIN’T want their kind (BLACKS,HISPANICS, etc.) in our neck-0-the-woods.


  26. rikyrah says:

    December 29, 2011
    Gingrich, now among the nouveau riche
    Delightful news, in that Newt can torment Mitt for weeks longer:

    Newt Gingrich has raised $9.2 million with three days to go before the end of the financial quarter … allow[ing] him to stay in the race even if he doesn’t have a strong finish in Iowa.

    Lately I’ve watched political pros on various cable-news shows venture their studied opinion that Newt has run out of options in his anti-Mitt campaign; that about all he can do is fuss and fidget over Mitt’s woefully unfair, anti-Newt attacks. The above cash helps to correct these pros, of course, but in terms of a short-term strategy I haven’t yet figured out why Gingrich doesn’t do to Romney what Romney is presently doing to President Obama: simply lie in the most outrageous manner about the former governor’s record.

    I don’t mean merely distort, or twist, or exaggerate whatever Romney did as a chief executive. I mean, just entirely make stuff up — which is, after all, about as characteristically GOP as it gets

  27. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone :)

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