Yolanda Adams (born Yolanda Yvette Adams on August 27, 1961(1961-08-27)) is an American Grammy– and Dove-award-winning [[Gospel singer, record producer, actress, and radio host. As of September 2009, she had sold 4.5 million albums since 1991 in the United States, according to SoundScan.
On December 11, 2009 Billboard Magazine named her the #1 Gospel Artist of the last decade. In the same chart, her album “Mountain High…Valley Low” was acknowledged as the best gospel album.
The oldest of six siblings, Adams was raised in Houston, Texas. She graduated from Sterling High School in Houston in 1979. After graduating from Texas Southern University, she began a career as a schoolteacher and part-time model in Houston, Texas. Eventually she gave up teaching to perform full-time as a lead singer.
Mitt Romney: Obama Campaign Promises As Good As Kardashian Wedding Vows
Stop your damn lies! Here are a few of his promises.
Expand housing vouchers program for homeless veterans
Expand federal bioforensics program for tracking biological weapons
End the “Stop-loss” program of forcing troops to stay in service beyond their expected commitments
Increase the size of the Army and Marine Corps
Reform the patent system
End the use of torture
Expand Veterans Centers in rural areas
Increase special operations forces and civil affairs
End the War In Iraq
Kill Bin Laden
The Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor
Punk ass lying liar. You’re playing dm games with folks lives, you prick!
hes such a liar…shamesless loser
Cantor says he’s willing to “cooperate” with Dems but not “compromise.” Lesley Stahl asks, “What’s the difference?”
http://lightbox.time.com/2011/11/14/portraits-of-power-african-kings-in-an-age-of-empire/#2 someone here wanted this link
Thank you, Dannie! I remembered I copied a link from you on Twitter and posted it here but for the life of me I couldn’t find where I posted it. Thank you so much!
At the End, Throwing Anti-Latino Elbows
Sun Jan 1st, 2012 at 05:42:25 PM EST
It doesn’t matter how many times nice young men mow his lawn, Mitt Romney isn’t going to sign the DREAM Act into law.
“The answer is yes,” he said, when asked if he would veto the legislation if Congress passes it and he is in the White House.
Romney said, however, that he would support granting children of illegal immigrants some form of residency in exchange for military service. “I’m delighted with the idea that people who come to this country and wish to serve in the military can be given a path to become permanent residents of this country,” he said, according to CNN.
So, to make sure that we have this straight…if your parents bring you to this country illegally, and you grow up here and go to school here, Mitt Romney says you can sign up to do a tour in Afghanistan but you can’t vote or get in-state school tuition or become a citizen, ever. If you join the military, maybe you can get some kind of residency thing, so the cops won’t hassle you.
You’d think a nice person like Mitt Romney would be too polite to say something like that. Instead of the DREAM Act, he wants to give us the BROWN CANNON FODDER Act. Isn’t that swell?
Poor Rick Perry, he should have though of it first.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry has been savaged by his fellow GOP contenders and conservative critics for Texas’ decision to allow children of illegal immigrants to attend state colleges for the in-state tuition rate. At a campaign stop in Boone, Iowa Saturday, Perry defended the program yet again.
He said Texans overwhelming backed the idea, as being in the “best long-term interest of the state” and argued it was a choice between turning them into “tax-wasters” who would require government support or helping to make them skilled, productive residents.
But Romney slapped Perry over the issue again Saturday. “For those who come here illegally, the idea of giving them in-state tuition credits or other special benefits I find to be contrary to the idea of a nation of law,” he said.
Remember, we’re talking about the children of illegal immigrants here. They didn’t “come here” in the normal sense of those words. They were brought here. Maybe they were brought to Massachusetts where they went to school, learned the state capitals, and quite possibly mowed the ex-governor’s law a time or two. It don’t matter to Mitt.
He’s trying to win the nomination, for Pete’s sake.
Ron Paul: Civil Rights Act Of 1964 ‘Destroyed’ Privacy
WASHINGTON — Despite recent accusations of racism and homophobia, Republican presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) stuck to his libertarian principles on Sunday, criticizing the historic Civil Rights Act of 1964 because it “undermine[d] the concept of liberty” and “destroyed the principle of private property and private choices.”
“If you try to improve relationships by forcing and telling people what they can’t do, and you ignore and undermine the principles of liberty, then the government can come into our bedrooms,” Paul told Candy Crowley on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “And that’s exactly what has happened. Look at what’s happened with the PATRIOT Act. They can come into our houses, our bedrooms our businesses … And it was started back then.”
I know thats right Ron!! If u dont want to see a negro, u shouldnt have to LOL!!!!!!!!!!
Rick Santorum Implies Obama Should Be Pro-Life Because He’s Black
The question is … is that human life a person under the constitution? And Barack Obama says no. Well if that human life is not a person then … I find it almost remarkable for a black man to say ‘now we are going to decide who are people and who are not people.
Can Santorum be any more stupid? Unfreakingbelievable!
HuffPo CEO Tim Armstrong: Romney Supporter
AOL and Huffington Post CEO, Timothy M. Armstrong is a Romney supporter currently at the maximum allowed contribution of $2,500 for the current cycle.
U.S. President Barack Obama and the First Family leave the National Memorial of the Pacific at Punchbowl, after visiting his grandfather’s grave, in Honolulu January 1, 2012. Obama is on Christmas vacation in Hawaii.
Secret Sevice agents stand by the motorcade as U.S. President Barack Obama and the First Family visit his grandfather’s grave at the National Memorial of the Pacific at Punchbowl while he is on Christmas vacation in Hawaii in Honolulu, January 1, 2012.
The motorcade carrying US President Barack Obama is seen at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific January 1, 2012 in Honolulu. Obama and his familiy was visiting the grave of his grandfather Stanley Dunham.
Dunham’s field work in Indonesia is on display at Honolulu’s East-West Center: http://www.eastwestcenter.org/events/exhibition-through-her-eyes-s-ann-dunham%E2%80%99s-field-work-indonesia
Fired Romney Employee Set To Tell All About Candidate’s Job Killing Record
Randy Johnson, who was one of the victims of layoffs by Mitt Romney’s Bain Capital, is set to hold a press conference today in Iowa about Romney’s record in the private sector.
Johnson was one of the workers at American Pad and Paper’s Indiana plant bought by Bain in 1992. Romney’s company then laid off the plant’s workers, cut their pay, reduced health care benefits and destroyed their retirement plan. In response, workers went on strike and Bain shuttered the entire plant and laid of the remaining 250 employees.
Romney and his partners at Bain made $100 million off of the deal, as workers lost their jobs and retirement security.
hee hee hee
January 01, 2012 12:10 PM
Worst. Congress. Ever?
By Steve Benen
The NYT reports today that President Obama, looking ahead to the November elections, is planning “to step up his offensive against an unpopular Congress, concluding that he cannot pass any major legislation in 2012 because of Republican hostility toward his agenda.” Though the parallels are imprecise, Truman won a second term running against Congress in 1948, and Obama appears eager to do the same.
Indeed, gaming out the coming months, the White House believes the very best we can hope for from Congress this year is a full extension of the payroll tax break — a measure I consider very unlikely to pass — and nothing else.
It would mean the 112th Congress would wrap up later this year with exactly zero meaningful accomplishments. The question then becomes historical in nature: will this go down as the worst Congress in the history of the United States?
Americans, who are ultimately responsible for creating this mess, are already inclined to think so. A recent NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll found 42% of the public sees this Congress as “one of the worst ever” — the highest percentage on this particular question the poll has found since it started asking it 22 years ago. Indeed, there’s ample polling evidence to suggest that while Congress, as an institution, has never been popular, we’re currently suffering through the least popular Congress ever.
NPR had an interesting report this week, pondering “just how bad” congressional conditions have become.
In modern history, [Thomas Mann, senior fellow of governance studies at the Brookings Institution in Washington] says, “there have been battles, delays, brinkmanship — but nothing quite like this.” […]
Mann acknowledges there have been worse times for Congress, but he reaches back a very long way for a comparison.
“There were a few really bruising periods in American congressional history, not only the run-up to the Civil War, but also around the War of 1812,” he says.
If we were only talking about gridlock, this Congress would merely be cover-your-eyes awful. Americans elected a Democratic president, a Democratic Senate majority, and the most right-wing Republican House majority since the dawn of the modern American party structure. That the legislative process has come to a screeching halt is not at all surprising — there is no overlap among their competing agendas, and GOP officials now look at ideas celebrated by moderate Republicans as akin to communism.
But what makes this Congress truly atrocious is the gridlock compounded by everything else: the debt-ceiling fiasco, the first-ever downgrade of U.S. debt (attributed almost entirely to ridiculous Republican intransigence), the near-shutdowns, the resignations, the refusal of one party to compromise, the wholesale abandonment of institutional norms and traditions, and the procedural abuses that make the legislative process itself a pathetic joke.
We reached the point this year at which we applaud wildly when lawmakers manage to keep the government’s light on, and hope desperately that Congress resist the temptation to make national conditions worse.
Revisiting a piece from a while back, Matt Taibbi had a fantastic cover story for Rolling Stone in October 2006 about the Republican-led Congress, shortly before Democrats won both chambers.
“These were the years,” Taibbi wrote, “when the U.S. parliament became a historical punch line, a political obscenity on par with the court of Nero or Caligula — a stable of thieves and perverts who committed crimes rolling out of bed in the morning and did their very best to turn the mighty American empire into a debt-laden, despotic backwater, a Burkina Faso with cable.”
The article included one of my favorite all-time quotes: Jonathan Turley told Taibbi, “The 109th Congress is so bad that it makes you wonder if democracy is a failed experiment.”
It seemed literally impossible at the time, but five years later, we appear to have found a Congress that’s even worse.
For an incumbent president, eager to avoid blame for the farce Washington has become, running against this institution seems like a fairly sensible move.
January 01, 2012 11:10 AM
Diversity creates conflict’
By Steve Benen
Zeke Miller has a piece this morning arguing that Rick Santorum may excel in the Iowa caucuses, but given the campaign’s message, he’ll likely struggle to compete just about everywhere else.
To help prove the point, Miller points to quotes like these.
Indeed, Santorum appeals to Iowa voters with a mix of unusual lines that won’t play outside the Hawkeye State.
“Diversity creates conflict. If we celebrate diversity, we create conflict,” Santorum told the audience in Ottumwa.
I mean, really. Who says things like this?
Even among those who celebrate uniform homogeneity most realize that the American ethos finds an inherent good in diversity. E pluribus unum … a nation of immigrants … strength through diversity — these are staples of American thought and have been for generations.
“If we celebrate diversity, we create conflict”? What?
This, of course, isn’t the only thing that’s likely to stand in Santorum’s way once the dust settles in Iowa. The former senator has invested enormous energy in the Hawkeye State — Santorum is the only candidate to visit every county in Iowa — but the focus and lack of resources have left him with no meaningful prospects anywhere. Santorum has no national network and no meaningful campaign infrastructure outside Iowa, and though he’d likely get a significant boost if he manages to finish first on Tuesday, it’s tough to see a single other primary or caucus state where the Pennsylvanian can expect to be competitive.
And that would be the case even if Santorum had a fantastic message. As “diversity creates conflict” helps demonstrate, he doesn’t even have that.
Cenk Uygur Comes Out of the Woodwork
By Emilia 1956
I’m old enough to remember ratfuckers. They appeared, as if from nowhere, during the 1972 election year – young Republicans, mostly college students, trained to look and act like young Democrats of the day (the forerunners of today’s EmoProg Puritopians), to infiltrate the offices and campaigns of the major Democratic Presidential contenders with the one aim of delivering Richard Milhouse Nixon the weakest possible Democratic candidate for the Presidential election of that same year.
They achieved their goal. They infiltrated the campaigns of Edmund Muskie, Henry Jackson and others, played their practical jokes and dirty tricks and effectively handed the nomination to George McGovern, whose disorganised and uncompromising campaign, run by people who, four years previously, were found in the streets of Chicago virulently protesting the Democratic convention of that year, resulting in the biggest defeat of a Democratic candidate in the history of the party. McGovern lost 49 states, carrying only Massachusetts (by dint of having Sargent Schriver, a Kennedy inlaw, on the ticket) and the District of Columbia.
The entire face of the Democratic party was altered after that. McGovern’s campaign manager, Gary Hart, set about changing it from a party which fought for union rights and for the working class and working poor into a bi-coastal cocktail party comprised of educated elitists who had nothingn in common either with labor history or the working class. Most shunned the poor. All were idealists. When it turned its back on the Southern and Midwestern rural working classes and the Rust Belt unskilled workers and their unions – as soon as Hart proclaimed these people herd followers and “little Hubert Humphreys”, the stage was set for a Republican takeover of the South and the rural Midwest and all points inbetween by the Republican party, thanks to the idealogical purity of Gary Hart and the ratfuckery, developed by Donald Segretti and enhanced and strengthened in subsequent years by two of Segretti’s most apt students, Lee Atwater and Karl Rove.
You might say, along with Hart, who began so earnestly but ended in a welter of sordid “Monkey Business”, that Atwater and Rove are responsible for what the modern Democratic Party is today.
Ratfuckery has reached a new level of sophistication. Coincidental to its further rise was the advent and enhancement of cable and internet media political discourse – the celebrity political pundit, or the Professional Left, along with the 24-hour news cycle – and the election of the first African American President.
Progressives sought love and comfort in the Leftwing writings and commentary of various pundits during the dark years of the Bush Administration, and – especially after Bush’s second election triumph – many more talking heads emerged … Many who had, until recently been practicing, full-on Republicans, themselves.
Seems there was a buck or two to be made proseltysing to the Progressives, and it might be mete to divide and conquer their intent in true Segrettian fashion, but via the media this time. After all, these poor souls were crying out for representative media voices in the Wilderness to counter Fox News.
Ceny Uygur was one of those ratfuckers. A failed corporate lawyer and neocon with an enhanced opinion of himself and an ego as fat as his broad ass.
He, along with the likes of Arianna Huffington and Ed Schultz, all former virulent neocons, sought to tap into the low information end of Progressive voters – young people and disaffected Left Coastal unreconstructed middle class types who yearned to be hippies again (or even for the first time) who either had forgotten how to think critically along the way or who had never learned. Suffice it to say, these people knew nothing and understood little about the way the government functioned.
They bought into the myth that Bush was a dictator, and when Barack Obama was elected, they assumed he’d be the dictator of their dreams, from the Left. The fact that many never listened to a word he uttered on the campaign trail was revealed in their early discontent and foot-stamping. Instead of listening to what he said, they projected their own ideals on his tabula rasa and hissyfitted when they thought he’d betrayed them.
Cenk, like the big stink that he is, tapped into that, furthering the myths they wanted to believe, encouraging their misguided misapprehensions with further and deliberate untruths about the President, his powers and what he actually could do. No one ever stopped to think how much a President’s actions are enhanced or hampered by the Congress which serves him. Far easier to blame the man in charge, especially if he’s black.
Let’s see, during the course of the past three years, Cenk’s been the man who has called the President a “moron,” who has written opinion pieces where he openly derided the President as being stupid, who openly equated the President as being on what he perceived as the same idiot level as George Bush for what Cenk reckoned as the President’s “betrayal” of all the public sector protesters in Wisconsin.
Governor Scott Walker Raises Taxes..
Posted on 12/30/2011 at 5:00 pm by JM Ashby
..on low-income, working families.
In other words, the wrong people.
As Wisconsinites await W-2 forms and related tax documents, hundreds of thousands of low-income families are bracing for a state budget change that will mean less money in their wallets next year.
Last summer, the state Legislature reduced the amount of money low- income families can receive in tax credits by $56.2 million.
That places Wisconsin among only a handful of states that will effectively raise taxes on their poorest residents in 2012, according to a recent study by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a nonprofit think tank. […]
The 2011-2013 state budget reduces the percentages for families with two or more children, which the state Legislative Fiscal Bureau considers a net tax increase.
Starting next year, low-income families with two children will be capped at 11 percent of the maximum federal credit, or $562, down from $716.
Families with three or more children will be limited to 34 percent, or $1,955, down from $2,473.
That may not sound like a lot of money unless you’re living paycheck to paycheck, and most of those who will be affected by this are.
Of course a modest tax increase would be easier to accept if, within the same budget, Scott Walker had not also instituted new tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy.
The combined cost of the tax cuts in the budget bill and in other bills already enacted this year will be $212 million in 2011-13, and the cumulative tally over the next ten years is projected to be $2.3 billion. Because many of the tax cuts are delayed or phased in, their annual price tag will grow steadily and will add to the state’s structural deficit. That impact (calculated by measuring the future fiscal impact relative to the effect in 2012-13) will be a $109 million boost to the structural deficit in the 2013-15 biennium and $238 million in the following biennium.
All of the new tax cuts benefit corporations or wealthy Wisconsinites. However, two other changes in the budget bill will raise taxes for seniors and low-wage workers by $70 million over the next two years – by cutting the state Earned Income Tax Credit by $56.2 million and by ending indexing of the Homestead Tax Credit (i.e., ending inflation adjustments to the Homestead credit formula). That change will cost low-income Wisconsinites $13.6 million over the next two years, and that amount will grow steadily in the years ahead as inflation erodes the value of the credit.
During the 2011-2013 time-frame, taxes on the rich will be cut by $212 million, while taxes on those with low-incomes will go up by $70 million. And as the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities notes, tax credits for low-income families are more directly stimulative because they are more likely to be spent on essential goods and services while the wealthy simply pocket it.
Meanwhile, Scott Walker also presided over the largest cut to education funding of any state that provides current-year data.
January 01, 2012 9:25 AM
The pot calling the kettle ‘nasty’
By Steve Benen
Kevin Drum flagged a Newt Gingrich quote yesterday that’s almost hard to believe. In fact, I watched the video just to make sure the Republican wasn’t misquoted in the print piece.
Politics has become a really nasty, vicious, negative business and I think it’s disgusting and I think it’s dishonest,” Gingrich told ABC News aboard his campaign bus in Iowa.
I’d genuinely love to know whether the disgraced former House Speaker is so far gone, he literally doesn’t remember his own record. As Kevin noted a month ago, Gingrich is largely and personally responsible “for the poisonous state of partisan politics in America today.”
To be sure, Gingrich didn’t invent toxic partisanship, but looking back over the last three decades, no individual did more to create our nasty, vicious, and negative political climate than Newton Leroy Gingrich. Indeed, no one else comes close.
Hearing him complain about political maliciousness is akin to Mitt Romney complaining about dishonest rhetoric — it requires a stunning lack of self-awareness.
Speaking of Gingrich, Matt Bai has a lengthy item on the disgraced former House Speaker in the New York Times Magazine today, and it includes this jaw-dropper.
Gingrich says now, in what may be a characteristic bit of revisionist history, that it was clear early on that he needed to break free of his highly paid and conventional consultants, and that he and his wife, Callista, actually took their much-maligned Greek vacation last June — a pleasure trip in the middle of what was supposed to be his ramp-up as a candidate — in order to provoke a confrontation with the campaign’s leadership. (Gingrich later added that he really needed to see the Greek fiscal crisis up close.)
I’d love to know what it would take for a serious person to believe this. Gingrich’s new line is that he, just three weeks after launching a presidential campaign, decided to go on a luxury cruise to Greece. He did this in order to (a) infuriate his own staff, who had foolishly hoped the presidential candidate would start campaigning for the presidency, and who subsequently quit in disgust; and (b) be a tourist in a country facing a fiscal crisis.
We’ve all heard plenty of after-the-fact spinning to explain away embarrassments, but this clearly belongs in the “you’ve got to be kidding me” category.
Department of Predictions
From this morning’s Toledo Blade:
Investment from resurgent American automakers made big news in 2011, with General Motors and Chrysler announcing multiple large projects in Toledo and northwest Ohio that together total nearly $1 billion and should create or help preserve almost 3,400 jobs.
Promise for the future of manufacturing in northwest Ohio was one of the brights spots in a year that saw many changes to the business landscape in the region.
The big bucks in manufacturing are coming from Chrysler Group LLC. The automaker last year committed $500 million to its Toledo Assembly complex. That investment, which will go toward updating the line that ultimately will build Jeep’s new sport utility vehicle in 2013, will add a second shift to the plant, and lead to more than 1,100 jobs. Chrysler also said it planned to invest $72 million in its Toledo Machining Plant.
General Motors Co. announced plans for two investments totaling $343 million in its Toledo Transmission plant for upgrades and a new line for an upcoming eight-speed transmission. It also plans to pump $47 million into its Defiance Powertrain plant.
“We’re seeing a tremendous amount of capital investment in our traditional manufacturing sector around the automotive industry,” said Ford Weber, president and chief executive officer of the Lucas County Improvement Corporation.
In addition to the automakers and other large-scale manufacturers, Mr. Weber noted suppliers are investing in facilities here, and that’s likely to continue, especially with emphasis on just-in-time delivery.
Because it can’t be repeated often enough, here are a conservative and a libertarian boldly planning political strategy, in 2009:
“The pattern here is pretty clear,” House Minority leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Thursday. “Every time the president makes a so-called tough decision, it’s the American middle class that gets hit the hardest.”
Obama defends his administration as a reluctant and stern savior of an industry that’s vital to the American economy.
Republicans see in GM a chance for their party to come out with a unified message — a confidence grounded in the conservative belief that government involvement in private industry always spells disaster. And GM’s long history of financial problems — even in more prosperous times — also makes Republicans see the company as a big albatross around Obama’s neck.
“This is somewhere in between Baghdad and fixing the flood in Louisiana,” Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, said, comparing the GM decision to major stumbles by former President George W. Bush. Obama “has decided to take this over. He now owns it.”
I’ll just repeat this part, because it’s absolutely key to understanding the (alleged) Conservative Soul:
a confidence grounded in the conservative belief that government involvement in private industry always spells disaster
Not facts or numbers, not a basic working knowledge of the NW Ohio manufacturing scene or the US auto industry or a discussion of the relative merits of several possible extraordinary measures we might have taken after a massive implosion of the economy, but belief.
They may as well have told us they were praying for us, that we were “in their thoughts” during this “difficult time”.
January 01, 2012 8:45 AM
Finger-pointing begins inside Perry camp
By Steve Benen
It’s never a good sign when a presidential campaign’s insiders begin dishing dirt on their colleagues before voters start expressing their preferences. Take Rick Perry’s team, for example.
Four months ago, the Texas governor was the frontrunner and expected to excel in Iowa. Today, Perry appears likely to finish fourth or fifth, and may soon face questions about the long-term viability of his campaign.
It’s against this backdrop that Politico has a fairly-long piece on Perry’s advisers who’ve “begun laying the groundwork to explain how the Texas governor bombed so dramatically in a race that he seemed to control for a brief period upon entering the race in August.”
Their explanations for the nosedive come against the backdrop of a campaign riven by an intense, behind-the-scenes power struggle that took place largely between a group of the governor’s longtime advisers and a new cadre of consultants brought on this fall. In the end, the outsiders won out — and ever since have marginalized Perry’s longtime chief strategist while crafting a new strategy in which the Texan has portrayed himself as a political outsider and culture warrior.
In a series of interviews with POLITICO, sources close to the campaign depict a dysfunctional operation that might be beyond saving because of what they describe as the political equivalent of malpractice by the previous regime. […]
In a blistering indictment, sources close to the operation describe a new team that was stunned to arrive in October and find a campaign that wasn’t executing the most rudimentary elements of a modern presidential campaign: no polling or focus groups, no opposition research book on their own candidate to prepare for attacks and debate prep sessions that were barely worth the name.
It’s hard to know for sure whether this is entirely true or campaign pros trying to cover their butts, but if Perry and his team, as recently as October, didn’t see the need for polling, oppo, or debate prep, it’s no wonder they seemed so inept.
It wasn’t just one problem that derailed Perry’s campaign, but I’d argue it was immigration policy — the in-state tuition, followed by the governor’s “have a heart” comment — that largely caused his precipitous decline. But consider this problem in light of the behind-the-scenes trouble: if Perry’s campaign were competent, the team would have expected the criticism on this issue, crafted a coherent response, and avoided the backlash in September. It’d likely be a very different race today.
But the combination of naivete, hubris, and incompetence led to a campaign that was practically “set up for failure.”
“They put the campaign together like all the other Perry campaigns: raise a bunch of money, don’t worry about the [media coverage], don’t worry about debates and buy the race on TV,” said a top Perry official. “You have to be a total rube to think a race for president is the same as a race for governor.”
January 01, 2012 8:10 AM
Where things stand in Iowa
By Steve Benen
We talked last night about the sought after results of the Des Moines Register’s Iowa Poll, which, not surprisingly, continue to show a competitive contest. Let’s briefly revisit where things stand just two days before caucus-goers make their preferences known.
The DMR poll effectively shows two tiers: three top-tier candidates who stand a chance of winning in Iowa (Romney at 24%, Paul at 22%, and Santorum at 15%), and three second-tier candidates who hope Iowa doesn’t derail their entire campaign (Gingrich at 12%, Perry at 11%, and Bachmann at 7%). It’s counter-intuitive, but the order of the bottom three may very well end up mattering more than the order of the top three — Santorum will get a boost no matter where he ends up in the top tier, while poor showings among the second-tier candidates may knock one or more candidates out of the race altogether.
Also note, of course, that there’s still room for even more changes — Santorum was third overall, but as the Register’s pollster, J. Ann Selzer, noted, he was a very strong second in the final two days the poll was conducted. The possibility of Santorum winning Iowa now seems perfectly plausible.
Alexander Burns’ observation last night also rings true:
The poll is obviously good news for Mitt Romney as well as Santorum, and a late, authoritative survey like this one can also end up being a self-fulfilling prophecy as voters narrow their options to a subset of candidates viewed as possible winners.
Right. More than 40% of likely caucusgoers “say they could still be persuaded to change their minds,” and given the number of social conservatives in Iowa, talk of the late “Santorum surge” could very well produce a snowball effect. One of the main problems plaguing Santorum for months was the impression that his campaign just wasn’t going anywhere — and now that he’s the talk of the town, it seems more than likely that the former senator will not only pick up some late undecided Republicans, but also support from Perry and Bachmann, who are competing for the same GOP constituencies.
And what about Romney? By all appearances, the former governor is feeling very confident about his chances in Iowa, and he clearly goes into Tuesday as the apparent frontrunner, but even his support comes with caveats. Remember, Romney dropped the pretense weeks ago about whether he’s competing to win in Iowa, and he’s now invested considerable amounts of time, money, and energy to come out on top. And yet, even after Romney has made these efforts in Iowa, and become the clear frontrunner at the national level, he still can’t break his 24% ceiling, and his support is effectively at the same level as it was in October.
Sunday, January 1, 2012
The End-Of-Year Emopants Blowout
Posted by Zandar
Both Glenn Greenwald and Taylor Marsh saw fit to end the year with massive anti-Obama rants where they basically announce openly their opposition to the President for 2012. Not that their opposition didn’t exist before, it’s just now official. First, Double G defends Ron Paul’s “effect” on our political discourse:
There are very few political priorities, if there are any, more imperative than having an actual debate on issues of America’s imperialism; the suffocating secrecy of its government; the destruction of civil liberties which uniquely targets Muslims, including American Muslims; the corrupt role of the Fed; corporate control of government institutions by the nation’s oligarchs; its destructive blind support for Israel, and its failed and sadistic Drug War. More than anything, it’s crucial that choice be given to the electorate by subverting the two parties’ full-scale embrace of these hideous programs.
I wish there were someone who did not have Ron Paul’s substantial baggage to achieve this. Before Paul announced his candidacy, I expressed hope in an Out Magazine profile that Gary Johnson would run for President and be the standard-bearer for these views, in the process scrambling bipartisan stasis on these questions. I did that not because I was endorsing his candidacy (as some low-level Democratic Party operative dishonestly tried to claim), but because, as a popular two-term Governor of New Mexico free of Paul’s disturbing history and associations, he seemed to me well-suited to force these debates to be had. But alas, Paul decided to run again, and Johnson — for reasons still very unclear — was forcibly excluded from media debates and rendered a non-person. Since then, Paul’s handling of the very legitimate questions surrounding those rancid newsletters has been disappointing in the extreme, and that has only served to obscure these vital debates and severely dilute the discourse-enhancing benefits of his candidacy.
He spends the rest of the article saying the President Obama is just as bad if not worse overall than Paul, and far worse than Paul on the specific issues that matter to him. He then proceeds to attack President Obama supporters as evil hypocrites who “don’t want to hear” his “truths”, accusing them of being stuck in Bush-era binary worldviews but then weasels out of endorsing Paul with constant whining about how nobody but Glenn Greenwald is smart enough to understand his carefully nuanced argument that he’s not endorsing Paul, he just wants someone like Paul to win over the hated, evil Obama. (Apparently that other person is Gary Johnson.)
The projection is apparent in the first hundred words when you realize that it’s Greenwald who has adopted the binary worldview, completely choosing to ignore the circumstances and nuance of realpolitik and the other two branches of government to say “You know, if it wasn’t for the bigotry, the racism, the utter disregard for the federal government and the supposition that states should have the right to discriminate freely, Ron Paul isn’t such a bad guy. Unlike Obama.” Silly, I know. But that one issue is enough for Greenwald to search for an alternative to the President…any alternative.
Replace Ron Paul with Hillary Clinton, and “civil liberties” with “women’s issues” and you get Taylor Marsh’s end of year screed where she declares her vote is now open.
Romney would veto immigration “dream” act
– Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney said on Saturday he would veto a proposal granting U.S. citizenship to undocumented immigrants who were brought to the country as children, a pledge that won hearty applause from Iowa conservatives he hopes to win over.
A young woman asked Romney about the bipartisan proposal known as the Dream Act, during an appearance at a crowded restaurant in Le Mars, a conservative Republican stronghold in western Iowa.
“The question is if I were elected and Congress were to pass the Dream Act, would I veto it and the answer is yes,” Romney said.
“For those that come here illegally, the idea of giving them in-state tuition credits or other special benefits, I find to be contrary to the idea of a nation of laws,” Romney said.
“If I’m the president of the United States I want to end illegal immigration so that we can protect legal immigration. I like legal immigration.”
Under the Dream Act, which was brought up in the Senate in May, young undocumented immigrants who have lived most of their lives in the United States and graduate from U.S. high schools would be eligible for a conditional six-year “path to citizenship” if they earn a college degree or serve two years in the military.
Romney also said he would secure the U.S.-Mexico border with a fence and enough Border Patrol agents to guard it.
The remarks drew vigorous applause in Le Mars and at a later appearance in Sioux City. Romney said he would eliminate the “magnet” that draws illegal immigrants by cracking down on employers who hire them.
“We need to give those employers the tools they need to determine who’s legal and illegal,” he said. “But if they have those tools and don’t use them, we’re going to go after them just like we go after employers who don’t pay their taxes,” Romney said.
He said he would continue a provision that grants a fast track to citizenship for foreigners who serve in the military.
Romney has led in the opinion polls ahead of Tuesday’s Iowa caucus, which kicks off the state-by-state contests to choose the Republican presidential candidate who will challenge President Barack Obama, a Democrat, in the November 2012 general election.
But he has not sealed the deal with some Iowa Republicans who doubt his conservative credentials because of his history as governor of left-leaning Massachusetts.
Newt says Obama seeks to steal elections with ID ruling
Republican presidential hopefuls spent Saturday crisscrossing Iowa Saturday ahead of Tuesday’s caucuses, but some candidates had one eye towards South Carolina’s Jan. 21 primary and an issue that might help them gain traction in the Palmetto State.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., used a stop in Council Bluffs, Iowa, to accuse the Obama administration of trying to “steal elections” in the wake of the Justice Department’s rejection of South Carolina’s voter identification law.
The Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division determined that the state’s law requiring voters to show photo ID at polling places was discriminatory against minorities.
“…You have to ask, why is it that they are so desperate to retain the ability to steal elections and I think that what it comes down to,” Gingrich said.
On Thursday, former Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., also blasted the Justice Department ruling, accusing the administration of pursuing “common-sense anti-fraud measures that states have put in place all because they believe it’s a partisan advantage for them to get people who probably shouldn’t be voting to help them and their political cause.”
South Carolina is one of more than a dozen mostly Republican-controlled states that have approved new voting laws that include requiring government-approved photo ID to register or vote; shortening early voting periods and curtailing voter registration efforts by third-party groups like the League of Women Voters or NAACP.
Supporters of the new laws say they are needed to protect against voter fraud, though several studies indicate that voter fraud in the United States is negligible.
Opponents say the new laws are a thinly veiled attempt to suppress the votes of minorities, the elderly and the young — key voting blocs for the Democratic Party.
An October study by New York University’s Brennan Center for Justice estimates that the new laws would adversely impact more than five million voters nationwide, most of them minorities who lack sufficient government-sanctioned photo ID or the materials to obtain the ID.
South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, R, has vowed to fight the Justice Department ruling.
Read more here: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2011/12/31/134540/newt-says-obama-seeks-to-steal.html#storylink=cpy
Ron Paul Ups The Ante And Claims Sexual Harassment Shouldn’t Be Illegal
January 1, 2012
By Jason Easley
On Fox News Sunday Ron Paul upped the ante on his opposition to sexual harassment laws by claiming that there should be no federal laws against sexual harassment.
Paul has held these views on sexual harassment laws for decades, but it wasn’t until he went from a fringe played to top tier Iowa candidate that anyone bothered to do even the most basic vetting of this candidate.
What Ron Paul was saying here is that there should not be any federal laws against sexual harassment. There should not be any civil rights protections for women and some men in the workplace. In other words, sexual harassment should be legal. Rep. Paul’s statements today reflect his ideology taken to its logical conclusions. I have praised Ron Paul in the Republican debates for his consistency, but we should not mistake consistency for a rigid ideological inflexibility that promotes a decision making process where details and circumstances don’t matter. In the mind of Ron Paul, the ideology must be adhered to at all times.
There should be no federal laws against sexual harassment. This is what voters are getting if they vote for Ron Paul. Rep. Paul has been moving up in Iowa, because this extremist message appeals to the very very conservative caucus goers. Democrats who are tempted to support Paul need to realize that no matter how tempting his foreign policy is, Ron Paul makes George W. Bush look like an enlightened an open minded thinker.
In a year when many in the Republican base are desperately searching for an extremist candidate, Ron Paul represents a kind of ideological purity and simplicity that for them is as addictive as crack.
Ron Paul has no business near the Presidency of the United States!
Republicans Try To Fool America With The Canard That Democrats Support The 1%
December 13, 2011
There is a perception by many Americans that there is very little difference between the two political parties, and that all Congressional representatives should share the blame when something goes wrong in the country. Other Americans place all the blame on the president because their ignorance of the legislative process and powers granted by the Constitution prevent them from recognizing that the executive branch of government does not mean the president is a monarch or dictator. America’s two party system gives voters a clear choice between a backward-looking, conservative group intent on taking the country back to early 20th Century, or a liberal, forward thinking party that strives to improve peoples’ lives now and in the future.
The recent spate of Republican presidential debates has given Americans an opportunity to see how much the candidates are alike and how loyal they are to the wealthiest Americans. Of course, there are varying degrees of religiosity between the Republicans, but they are all heavily invested in the so-called “family values” cult. They are also loyal to the wealthiest 1% of Americans who own banks, corporations, and Wall Street, and they have sworn allegiance to their dark master, Grover Norquist, whose stated goal is destroying the government. All things considered, the Republican candidates are relatively identical in their ideology that 99% of the population exists for the sole purpose of enriching the top 1% of the wealthiest Americans.
Democratic representatives are a bit more difficult to portray generally, because there are so-called conservative Democrats who pander to their red state constituencies, Progressive Democrats who are staunch Liberals, and a variety of caucuses; but for the most part, they work for all the people and not just the rich. The beauty of the Democratic Party’s variety is that every segment of the population is represented whether it is the poor, single mothers, labor, seniors, disabled Americans and the banking industry and Wall Street.
At an Occupy protest this past weekend, there was a sign accusing Republicans and Democrats of working solely for Wall Street, corporate banks, and the wealthiest 1% of the population. It is a common complaint that shows up in the comment sections of left-leaning Web sites, and one Republicans use to deflect attention from their party’s perpetual pandering to the wealthy and their corporations. When observers point out that Republicans follow orders from lobbyists and take Wall Street, corporate and special interest groups’ contributions, Republicans reply that Democrats are just as guilty of taking Wall Street and corporate contributions as Republicans. The intended conclusion is that both parties are responsible for the current economic malaise the country is going through. Fortunately, the facts tell a different story.
First, there is no argument that both parties accept campaign contributions from corporate interests or Wall Street. It is a fact of life and a good reason for campaign finance reform legislation, but that is another article altogether. However, to assume that Democrats, like Republicans, are guilty of giving preferential treatment to the 1% at the expense of the rest of the population because they take campaign donations from the wealthy is fallacious.
Even though Democratic representatives take money from Wall Street and corporate banks, they passed a financial reform law in 2010 to protect consumers and regulate Wall Street and the biggest banks that caused a global financial meltdown in 2007-2008. Republicans opposed the law and promise to repeal it if they control the Congress and the White House. Democrats passed the historic health care reform law that is really health insurance reforms to prevent the insurance industry from raping consumers by refusing coverage for any number of reasons. Republicans created the teabaggers in an effort to portray grassroots opposition to the ACA, voted en masse against the law, and voted to repeal it on their first day in control of the House. Each of the Republican presidential candidates promises to repeal the law on their first day in office, if elected. At the end of 2010, in order to extend unemployment benefits for Americans desperate for work, Democrats had to acquiesce to extending the Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthy before Republicans would extend unemployment benefits.
Those are the differences between a party that works for Wall Street, corporations, and the wealthy and one that works for the majority of American people in 2010. In 2011, Republicans distinguished themselves as enemies of women, the poor and elderly, middle class, and unemployed Americans who are falling into poverty because the GOP refuses to increase taxes on the wealthiest 1% to create millions of jobs. They nearly caused the country’s first credit default for not following a balanced approach to deficit reduction by making responsible budget cuts and increasing revenue by raising taxes on the rich. Republicans also failed to deliver on their highly touted campaign promise in 2010 to create jobs and in fact, have killed millions of jobs with their bible-based spending cuts targeting the poor, minorities, and women.
Surging Wave of Santorum
The new Des Moines Journal Register poll shows Rick Santorum surging into third place, tying up the votes of the evangelicals:
What makes Santorum’s growth spurt particularly striking is his last-second rise: He averaged 10 points after the first two nights of polling, but doubled that during the second two nights. Looking just at the final day of polling, he was just one point down from Romney’s 23 percent on Friday.
The Republican party in Iowa reminds me of a patient with a terminal disease (Romneyitis) desperately turning to alternative medacine. They’ve cycled through homeopathy (Bachmann), naturopathy (Cain), chelation (Perry) and aromatherapy (Paul). Now they’ve hit the final frontier—urotheraphy. I’m glad that I’ve never been so desperately ill that I’ve contemplated drinking my own piss, but I can imagine what it might feel like if I consider the level of desperation needed to vote for Rick Santorum.
Gingrich: Romney would buy White House if he could
By SHANNON MCCAFFREY
Newt Gingrich said Sunday his GOP rival Mitt Romney would buy the presidency if he could.
Speaking to reporters after attending Mass at the St. Ambrose Cathedral in Des Moines, Gingrich said the amount that the former Massachusetts governor will eventually spend on his various campaigns will rival the spending of billionaire New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
“Romney would buy the election if he could,” Gingrich said.
A political action committee supporting Romney has rolled out ads attacking Gingrich in the days before Tuesday’s caucuses. They have helped erode his support in the state.
A new Des Moines Register poll put Gingrich in fourth place, after leading the field a few weeks ago.
The former House speaker said Sunday that the most accurate part of the survey was that 41 percent said they could change their opinion.
Happy New Years “3Chics.” I’m looking forward to your commentary as we ease through the “Silly Season” aka Republican Primaries and be about the business of re-electing our President.
That’s some bs the silence on weapons found. Why, just because the McVeigh wannabe didn’t finish the job? If it’s Tyrone or Abdullah – interrupt Lockup and errythang else. Have a good day all.
Happy New Year, Tyren!
So nice to see you. Many blessings now and throughout the year.
, January 1, 2012
I’d like to introduce Glenn Greenwald to Reinhold Niebuhr
I had a very strong reaction to reading Glenn Greenwald’s latest article titled Progressives and the Ron Paul Fallacies. But if you’d like a raging post about the evils of Greenwald, I’m afraid you’re going to have to look elsewhere. My plan is to try to respond reasonably – whether or not he would be inclined to do so in return. I’ll also fall short of tackling everything Greenwald said that I disagree with. Instead, I have a particular point to make and for today, I’ll stick with that.
It was when I got to the part in Greenwald’s article where he extolled a piece written about Ron Paul by Matt Stoller that I thought of Reinhold Niebuhr.
As Matt Stoller argued in a genuinely brilliant essay on the history of progressivism and the Democratic Party which I cannot recommend highly enough: “the anger [Paul] inspires comes not from his positions, but from the tensions that modern American liberals bear within their own worldview.” Ron Paul’s candidacy is a mirror held up in front of the face of America’s Democratic Party and its progressive wing, and the image that is reflected is an ugly one; more to the point, it’s one they do not want to see because it so violently conflicts with their desired self-perception.
He then goes on to list all of the “heinous” things President Obama has done – mostly in his execution of the battle against al Qaeda.
I won’t claim to be an expert on Niebuhr’s philosophy, but I did spend some time reading both his work and things that were written about him when I heard about this exchange between then-Senator Obama and David Brooks.
Out of the blue I asked, “Have you ever read Reinhold Niebuhr?”
Obama’s tone changed. “I love him. He’s one of my favorite philosophers.”
So I asked, What do you take away from him?
“I take away,” Obama answered in a rush of words, “the compelling idea that there’s serious evil in the world, and hardship and pain. And we should be humble and modest in our belief we can eliminate those things. But we shouldn’t use that as an excuse for cynicism and inaction. I take away … the sense we have to make these efforts knowing they are hard, and not swinging from naïve idealism to bitter realism.”
Niebuhr was a Christian theologian/philosopher who lived from 1892-1971. He began his career as a pastor committed to the social gospel and pacifism. The rise of fascism and the events of WWII caused Niebuhr to question these commitments in a way that holds the tension between “the world as it is” and “the world as we want it to be.’
Republicans bying the elections. Wake up already! http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-money-election-20120101,0,3871354.story #obama2012 @ows
the real beauty of this election is that after the President hands Romney his ass, the far right will go for someone like Perry next time
2011: The Year The Republican Party Repeatedly Humiliated America
December 31, 2011
It is beneficial, and often distressing, to look back over the past year and attempt to rationalize the conduct of politicians elected to serve the American people to predict where the country is headed. The biggest news of 2011 is not the various Republican assaults on job creation, or holding the debt ceiling hostage nearly sending America into a credit default, or their extremist presidential candidates, but their sustained assault on the poor, women, children, and senior citizens. There is a famous quote that says; “The measure of a society is how it treats its weakest members” and although there is questionable attribution related to those few words, it certainly is relevant to the lack of humanity inherent in a major segment of the population and especially the Republican Party.
Glenn Greenwald Jokes about President Obama Raping a Nun
After President Obama signed the NDAA, Glenn Greenwald took to Twitter to highlight the ACLU’s response statement. Blogger Angry Black Lady took issue with Greenwald and Emptywheel’s characterization of the law.
When a Greenwald fan interjected with a horrific statement suggesting that Angry Black Lady would defend the president if he raped a nun on TV, Greenwald joined in and amplified that disgusting and offensive imagery instead of ignoring it or rebuking it.
A wide range of Twitter users were outraged at the offensive tweets about the president raping a nun, but Greenwald dodged accepting any responsibility for participating in such vile conversation, and several of Greenwald’s most ardent admirers doubled down and insisted the statements were perfectly acceptable, while attacking Angry Black Lady for not being able to take a joke. Repellent.
Are you kidding me? When is rape a joke? Totally reprehensible!
Hat tip: Pensito Review
Vets: Michelle Best-Ever First Lady
She’s best known as America’s First Mom, the First Beekeeper, and Veggie Gardener-in-Chief. But first lady Michelle Obama is also getting quite a name in military circles: First Booster for the troops. “Certainly other first ladies and presidents have taken an interest,” says Joyce Raezer, executive director of the National Military Family Association. “But to make supporting military families [a priority], and not just to make it one of the things you do, this is a game-changer,” adds an appreciative Raezer.
Often teamed with her lieutenant, Jill Biden, the vice president’s wife, Obama has organized and attended more events for and with military veterans and their families than any previous first lady, according to veterans groups. This year alone, for example, she’s participated in 50 events, many out of the eye of the media, and even dedicated the White House Christmas tree to supporting veterans. “There is this sense that this is genuine,” says Raezer. “We haven’t had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever.”
Our Flotus rocks! She is the bestest!
I have to believe the military folks understand this
Man With Explosives Detained At Texas Airport
MIDLAND, Texas — A man was detained Saturday after trying to go through a security checkpoint at a Texas airport with explosives in military-grade wrapping, federal and local officials said.
The man was stopped at a security checkpoint at the Midland International Airport about 9 a.m. and taken into custody by the FBI, they said.
FBI spokesman Mike Martinez declined to say whether the man was in military uniform or how many explosives were found in the bag. He said he did not know where the man was being held, saying he was at either the airport or at the FBI office in Midland.
Midland police Sgt. Brian Rackow told the Midland Reporter-Telegram and Odessa American that the man identified himself to investigating officials as being active in the military. He and his family had been in the area visiting relatives and were on their way back to his base in North Carolina, Rackow said.
It’s not clear which base, and Rackow did not immediately return phone calls to The Associated Press for comment.
City of Midland spokeswoman Tasa Watts said she had no information on the suspect but the explosives were wrapped in military-grade wrapping. She said the specific grade won’t be known until the explosives are tested.
The Transportation Security Administration issued a statement saying one of its officers spotted a suspicious item in a carry-on bag during X-ray screening. It said the checkpoint was closed for about an hour while officers investigated and removed the item.
Watts said the man was entering a terminal when he was stopped, and a sweep was done to clear that terminal before normal operations resumed.
An American Airlines spokesman said the man had a reservation on Flight 3283 from Midland to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport. The departure time for the American Eagle plane was 9:45 a.m.
Hmmm, “A MAN” Well, that lets the MOOOSLIMS off the hook. Nothing to see here folks; move along
Name: ATWATER, TREY SCOTT
Address: 3806 PERMIAN CT, MIDLAND, TX 79703
OffenseClassCourtCountyWarrant NumberArrest DateBondFinesDispositionYearsMonthsDaysHours
HOLD FOR USMSUSFED WESTERN DISTRICT DETAINER 12/31/11$.00$.00PENDING DISPOSITION0000
No Muslim terrorist. No breaking news alerts about it from CNN, MSNBC, or Fox either.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!!!!!!!
Happy New Year, Dannie!
“The Office Of The President of The United States is not a caucasian office, or a Black office, or a Latino/Hispanic office. It is not a red office, or a blue office, it is not a Progressive office, a Conservative office or a GOP office. It is not a Republican office, or a Liberal office, it is not a Independent office or a left or right wing office.
It IS The Office Of The President Of The United States Of America…..ALL America.”
Prayers for Japan!!!!!!!!!!!
BREAKING: Tsunami Alert for Japan as second earthquake hits coast of Japan at 7.9 Magnitude.
bless the people. keep them safe
Happy New Year, Everyone!
Happy New Year Everyone! Love Yolanda’s rendition of ” believe I Can Fly.”
YES WE CAN in 2012.
HAPPY NEW YEAR, 3CHICS!!!!