Serendipity SOUL | Monday Open Thread |

Happy MUN-dane, Everybody. This Week’s featured artist is MR. STEVIE WONDER… so Don’t You Worry ‘Bout a Thang.

Pics of the day:

President Barack Obama, left, with first lady Michelle Obama, right, and their daughters Sasha and Malia, second from left, walk from the White House in Washington to attend a Sunday services at a nearby church, Sunday, Aug. 19, 2012.
—AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta

US President Barack Obama walks across Lafayette Park to St. John’s Episcopal Church to attend Sunday services with daughters Malia(2nd-L), Sasha(2nd-R) and First Lady Michelle Obama in Washington DC, August 19, 2012.

President Barack Obama, left, with first lady Michelle Obama, right, and their daughters Sasha and Malia, second from left, walk from the White House in Washington to attend a Sunday services at a nearby church, Sunday, Aug. 19, 2012.
—-AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta

This entry was posted in Current Events, Music, Open Thread, Politics and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

45 Responses to Serendipity SOUL | Monday Open Thread |

  1. rikyrah says:

    Washington Post:

    “The Obama campaign is set to release seven radio ads that escalate its attacks on Paul Ryan, his Medicare plan, and the fiscal priorities that are at the heart of his vision.

    According to the campaign, the message in each ad will be tailored to individual swing states, pointing out how each one would fare under the Romney/Ryan vision. A few samples:

    * The ad in Florida will emphasize Ryan’s plan to quasi-voucherize Medicare.

    * The ad in Iowa will emphasize cuts in Ryan’s budget to clean energy investments, which are meant to remind voters of the GOP stance on wind energy, an important issue in the state.

    * The ad in Virginia will emphasize the Ryan budget’s cuts to infrastructure investments.

    * The ads in Ohio and New Hampshire emphasize the Ryan budget’s cuts to Pell grants, making it harder for kids in those states to go to college.

    And so on; all of the ads, meanwhile, will also stress that the Ryan plan would result in deep tax cuts for the wealthiest among us.”

  2. rikyrah says:

    As a Harvard Alum, I Apologize
    By James Fallows

    August 20 2012, 12:00 PM ET

    Yes, I know, you could imagine many sentences that would follow that headline. But here is what I have in mind right now: A tenured professor of history at my undergraduate alma mater has written a cover story for Daily Beast/Newsweek that is so careless and unconvincing that I wonder how he will presume to sit in judgment of the next set of student papers he has to grade. It’s by the irrepressible Niall Ferguson, it is headlined “Obama’s Gotta Go,” and its case rests on logic of this sort:

    Certainly, the stock market is well up (by 74 percent) relative to the close on Inauguration Day 2009. But the total number of private-sector jobs is still 4.3 million below the January 2008 peak.

    Hmmm, what might possibly be the flaw in this comparison? Apart from the fact that Obama did not take office until January 2009 and that private sector jobs have recovered better in his first three-plus years than they did under George W. Bush. As The Atlantic’s Derek Thompson recently pointed out:

    I do wonder how a criticism of a president, based on a benchmark a year before he took office, and about 16 months before his main “stimulus” effort began taking effect, would be assessed in Harvard’s history or economics departments. Unemployment is America’s worst economic problem, and Obama’s. But this is not the way to demonstrate it. The Atlantic’s Robert Wright has argued, to similar effect, that relative to European economies hit by the terrible employment shock of 2008-2009, the U.S. has recovered better, faster, than others have.

    You should read the article for yourself, but a few other highlights:
    – “Remarkably the president polls relatively strongly on national security.”

    Remarkably the name Osama bin Laden does not appear in this article.

  3. rikyrah says:

    State Senator Nina Turner of Ohio is ON FIRE!!

    This woman rocks!!!

    She is telling it…on voting in Ohio!!

  4. rikyrah says:

    August 20, 2012

    A chilling half-hour

    I just watched, on MSNBC, Romney-Ryan campaigning in New Hampshire. It was about 30 minutes of viewing, and a lifetime of lies.

    These boys have reconfigured the “Big Lie.” If one lie can work, or so goes their theory, then 20 can work even better. What’s more, diabolically mixing lies with the truth is, evidently, outmoded. Blanket lies are now altogether pure in their disingenuity. And why not? If the base is so gullible as to believe that “Obamacare” increases the national debt, then the base will surely swallow that Paul Ryan is a deficit hawk. These are but two of the roughly 20 lies I just heard.

    I can hear the objection. Hey, they’re politicians. And politicians lie. They’re masters at it; it’s what they do; Romney and Ryan are merely extending the American political tradition of twisting and distorting and lying. As far as that truism goes, true enough. But this is new. This is different. What Romney-Ryan are executing is … evil; an evil unprecedented in the annals of even our most ignominious political history.

  5. rikyrah says:

    Tweety was blistering once again on Willard in his final segment today.

  6. rikyrah says:

    August 20, 2012

    What Akin was proving

    GOP leaders have “urged Akin to consider what was best for himself and the party.” That’s not fair. And besides, if the party starts weighing the pros and cons of lunacy now, where will it all stop?

    Akin’s knell, however, has rung.

    Crossroads GPS, the super-PAC co-founded by strategist Karl Rove that had already invested more than $5 million in the race, confirmed it would be pulling an undisclosed amount that they still had invested in Missouri.

    It was Crossroads’ pre-strangulation that had doomed Claire McCaskill. Last I was in Missouri, Rove’s organization was running full television steam: the Democratic senator, according to Crossroads, had her sights–through “Obamacare”–set on Medicare. The ads were devastating in the setting of an ill-informed electorate, and recent polling consistently showed just how devastating.

    Now, McCaskill will likely survive. But Akin’s and Crossroad’s gathering success in Missouri demonstrated how easily purchased the next Congress will likely be. And that–not Obama’s reelection, which appears rather safe–is the truly horrifying, developing reality of Romney-Ryan’s Big Lies.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Posted at 02:37 PM ET, 08/20/2012
    Obama to media: Romney’s whole campaign is based on lies

    By Greg Sargent

    In a surprise appearance before reporters at the White House just now, Obama made a striking, if perhaps long overdue, charge: He pushed back on GOP claims he’s running a dirty campaign by arguing that Romney’s entire campaign is based on flat out lies.

    Obama was questioned sharply by a reporter who pointed to the Priorities USA ad featuring the dead woman and the Obama campaign’s pressure on Romney to release his tax returns, and asked whether he regretted his campaign’s tone. Obama responded, in part:

    “I don’t think that Governor Romney is somehow responsible for the death of the woman that was portrayed in that ad. But keep in mind, this is an ad that I didn’t approve; I did not produce; and as far as I can tell, has barely run. I think it ran once. Now, in contrast, you’ve got Governor Romney creating as a centerpiece of his campaign this notion that we’re taking work requirement out of welfare. Which every single person here who’s looked at it says, it’s patently false…

    “Everybody who’s looked at this says what Governor Romney is saying is absolutely wrong. Not only are his Super PACs running millions of dollars worth of ads making this claim; Governor Romney himself is approving this and saying it on the stump. So the contrast I think is pretty stark. They can run the campaign that theyw ant; but the truth of the matter is, you can’t just make stuff up. That’s one thing you learn as president of the United States. You get called into account.”

    I’m pretty sure this is the first time Obama himself has charged that virtually Romney’s entire campaign is based on a “centerpiece” that’s flat out false.

  8. rikyrah says:

    yes yes yes yes!!!

    GO Cynthia Tucker…link Akin and Paul Ryan.

    Telling the truth – YES, Ryan is a GENERAL of the GOP War on Women.

    Yes, Ryan was a sponsor of the HR3\

    Yes, Ryan tried to REDEFINE RAPE.

    Yes, Ryan is a sponsor of the Personhood Amendment

    Yes, Ryan believes in NO EXCEPTIONS with abortion.

  9. rikyrah says:

    Akin clinging to his Senate bid

    By Steve Benen

    Mon Aug 20, 2012 4:58 PM EDT.

    After saying that “the female body has ways” to “shut down” pregnancies caused by “legitimate rape,” Republican Todd Akin’s U.S. Senate bid Missouri isn’t in good shape. The National Republican Senatorial Committee has told Akin he’ll get no support for his race from the national party, and Karl Rove’s attack operation has said it’ll give up on Missouri, too.

    Akin, however, says he’s staying in the race. In fact, he’s even trying to defend his unique understanding of science — the RNC called Akin’s perspective “biologically stupid” — by telling Sean Hannity that he’d “heard from medical reports that rape is such a traumatic type of thing that there’s a reaction.”

    Akin’s also leaning on the ultimate Republican trump card.

    • Ametia says:

      Good; I hope this MOFO Akin stays in the race, keeps running his trap and we’re going to keep tying Coupon Boy, Eddie Munster, Ayn Rand-loving Paul Ryan to him as the co-sponsor of this rape fuckery.

  10. rikyrah says:

    Where political journalism must not go
    By Steve Benen
    Mon Aug 20, 2012 4:37 PM EDT.

    If Newsweek’s goal was to spark some conversation, Niall Ferguson’s new cover story is a smashing success — it’s generating far more interest than the magazine’s pieces usually do.

    If, however, Newsweek’s goal is to strengthen its reputation, and gain new respect as a major news outlet, Ferguson’s new cover story marks an ignominious low for the once-great magazine, tarnishing the publication’s reputation in ways likely to do lasting, irreparable harm.

    The broader point of the piece is pretty straightforward: Ferguson disapproves of President Obama and wants him to lose. That, in and of itself, would make this rather unremarkable, and hardly worth making a fuss over.

    The problem, however, is that in the course of launching his lengthy, 3,300-word attack, Ferguson publishes a series of claims with no foundation in reality. I’m not talking about errors of judgment, I’m referring to transparent errors of fact — Ferguson wrote easily-checkable claims about health care, the stimulus, China, job creation, Paul Ryan, and taxes, all of which completely fall apart after minimal scrutiny.

  11. rikyrah says:

    Florida gov pushing for cut in early voting days
    By Laura Conaway
    Mon Aug 20, 2012 5:30 PM EDT.

    This year, Florida has operated under a two-tiered system for voting. Counties not covered by the Voting Rights Act have held elections with the state’s newly narrowed window for early voting. The five counties covered by the Voting Rights Act have continued with the old system of 14 days, including some weekend hours.

    The result, write Dan Smith and Michael Herron of ElectionSmith, is our first glimpse of the effect early voting has on turnout. In short, the Voting Rights counties historically have lower turnout than the others, but the gap narrows when early voting is in effect – from 5.66 percent in 2008 under the old system to 3.23 percent this year. From ElectionSmith:

    So, what are we to make of this? Admittedly, the turnout gap between the five Section 5 and the other 62 counties is not huge, but it is indicative that HB 1355 may be depressing turnout in those counties that must comply with the new, more restrictive law. And, it is certainly arguable that since registered voters in the five Section 5 counties have historically relied more heavily on early voting in past elections, and if early voting days and hours are reduced in those counties if HB 1355 is eventually upheld, their comparatively lower turnout levels might take even more of a hit

    The ElectionSmith post is a deep, geeky dive into an emerging story. They won’t know until after the 2012 election the full impact of early voting.

    Which has not stopped Governor Rick Scott’s administration from trying to cut the number of days. Today the Florida Secretary of State got four of the five counties to sign on for fewer days, on the premise that county clerks can expand the number of hours each day. The state wants to use their assent to persuade a court that it’s OK to narrow the window from 14 days to eight. The lone holdout county is in the Keys. From the Miami Herald:

    What I told them is that the days are more important than the hours,” said Monroe County Supervisor of Elections Harry Sawyer, a Republican who has held the post for 24 years. In every election in the Keys, Sawyer said, early voting participation has increased. “It’s working for us,” he said. “I told them, if it’s not broke, don’t fix it

    Also today, six African-American members of the Florida legislature stopped by Scott’s office to ask for a meeting so they could make the case for weekend voting. A Scott staffer told them the governor was busy today.

  12. rikyrah says:

    Soledad O’Brien tries to get Christine O’Donnell to define the word ‘Marxist’

    CNN host Soledad O’Brien finally had an Inigo Montoya moment on Monday, and all it took was former Republican Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell misusing the word “Marxist.”

    Granted, it’s not the first time O’Donnell, a longtime anti-abortion activist, has called the president or Democrats “Marxist.” She even used the term to describe her Democratic opponent, Chris Coons, drawing exclamation points across the conservative blogosphere. But when she rolled it out on O’Brien’s show Monday, describing the president’s public statements as “Marxist sound bites,” it was little more than a nonstarter.

    “Why do you think they’re Marxist?” O’Brien asked. “I mean, you kind of throw the words socialist and Marxist around that are not necessarily, I think, anchored in definitions of socialism and Marxism. So give me the definition.”

    “Well, they absolutely are,” O’Donnell replied. “They absolutely are. But let me, I’ll get to that…”

    O’Donnell instead began speaking about an upcoming tea party event where a staged debate between tea partiers and occupy supporters is planned. She finally added: “And I would say that they’re Marxist because of the things that you hear coming from him about share the wealth, economic equality. And these soundbites might sound good and noble on the surface, but the problem is there’s quantifiable data that prove that they simply don’t work, and we’re a free market economy that’s supposed to empower the individual, let each person use their gifts, use the rewards to create a better life for themselves instead of what Barack Obama is posing – a tax code that punishes hard work, a tax code that reduces everybody to exactly the same.”

    Unfortunately for O’Donnell, “sound bites” aren’t acts of policy, the president’s tax proposals do nothing of the sort, and encouraging people to share and be civil isn’t even close to the definition of “Marxism.” Even so, she’s not likely to stop saying it any time soon.

    One mistake she probably won’t make again is calling herself a “policy wonk” in front of O’Brien. Earlier in the segment she’d mentioned that “policy wonks like me” read a lot of statistics and figures that apathetic youth don’t. “You’re a policy wonk now? When did that happen?” O’Brien asked a moment later, prompting O’Donnell to change the term, then change the subject.

  13. rikyrah says:

    August 20, 2012 3:58 PM

    Abortion Exceptions “A Sin”

    By Ed Kilgore

    As we wait to see if MO Senate nominee Todd Akin brazens it out and defies the growing cry of Republicans for him to get off the general election ballot before COB tomorrow (making it easy for the state GOP to replace him), I’d remind readers of the powerful views of the powerful constituencies that think it important to hold the GOP to the most extreme position available on abortion. You may recall that I attended an important Christian Right event in Iowa last weekend, and observed after listening to a so-so speech by Rick Perry:

    [T]he most interesting speaker I heard today was another Texan, Laurence White, pastor of the Lutheran (Missouri Synod) Church of Our Savior in Houston, who lashed not only the evil liberal secularists but faithless Republican pols and at audience itself for tolerating “the perverted standards of the ungodly who live around us.”
    Best known for his relentless comparisons of conservative evangelical culture warriors with the Confessing Church under Nazi Germany, White came to demand that his listeners make the immediate and total revocation of legalized abortion, same-sex marriage and other forms of “indecency” an unconditional demand.
    “On abortion, there is just one Christian position. For a Christian not to vote is a sin. For a Christian voting in any election for any candidate who is not absolutely, unequivocally and authentically opposed to abortion is a sin.”

  14. rikyrah says:

    August 20, 2012 9:16 AM

    Tripling Down on the Welfare Lie

    By Ed Kilgore

    I had naively thought that perhaps after two rounds of heavy advertisements advancing a race-baiting pack of lies about the Obama administration’s welfare policies, the Romney/Ryan campaign would pocket whatever advantage it had derived and move in a different direction before the mendacity of the attacks began to afflict even the consciences of cynical MSM political reports. But no: there’s a new ad, which dares defend its accuracy via (a) a completely empty editorial from the ever-partisan Richmond Times-Dispatch that in turn appears to rest its trust in the accuracy of the ads on (b) the opinion of Daily Caller columnist Mickey Kaus. Yes, it’s Mickey Kaus’ ultimate fantasy: being the indirect author of a multi-million dollar assault on his old enemies among social policy liberals.

    If you actually go read the Kaus column that appears to have become via the Richmond papers Mitt Romney’s ex post facto justification for his ads, even Mickey admits that its central charges are “overstated and oversimplified.” His everybody’s-lying semi-defense of the ad is based purely and simply on Kaus’ judgment that the people in charge of welfare policy at HHS are known by Mickey to be enemies of the work requirement, and therefore in announcing an openness to waiver applications must have been moving towards an effort to overturn work requirements entirely. Mickey’s big aha moment—a line way, way down in the weeds of an HHS memo suggesting a possible pilot project allowing certain training programs to be counted temporarily as “work”—doesn’t provide much justification for an ad that explicitly says Obama has abolished any work or training requirement, and makes the new policy: “they just mail you your welfare check.” This is a blatant lie even if you buy Mickey Kaus’ omniscient old-ax-grinding knowledge of the inner evil intent of HHS bureaucrats.

    Anyone authentically worried about the future of work-based welfare reform ought to be a bit more concerned about the Romney/Ryan ticket’s open and undisputed intent to deeply undermine all the “make work pay” supports that are essential to the success of reform, especially in a weak economy: the earned income tax credit, food stamps, Medicaid (and for many of the working poor, the Medicaid expansion provided for by the Affordable Care Act), and job training resources.

  15. rikyrah says:

    Political AnimalBlog
    August 20, 2012 2:51 PM

    Under Akin’s Cover

    Props to The Atlantic’s Adam Martin for noticing something very interesting that’s happened during the furor over Todd Akin’s highly impolitic remarks about abortion and rape: GOP vice-presidential designee Paul Ryan has quietly “adjusted” his own position on the tiny number of abortions he’s willing to tolerate, bringing it into line with Mitt Romney’s.

    While Ryan’s fans deny his cosponsorship of a federal law deeming a fertilized ovum a “person” eligible for the full protection of federal or state governments means he would ban all abortions, his longer record, according to the National Right to Life Committee no less, shows consistent support for abortion bans that exclude only procedures necessary to protect the life of the woman involved. And even on occasion when he’s supported “compromise” legislation that recognizes rape/incest exceptions, he’s been in favor of narrowing them, as in last year’s House GOP effort (eventually abandoned) to limit the rape exception to “forcible rapes”—an uncomfortable echo of Akin’s “reasoning.”

    Now, all of a sudden, Ryan’s steered clear of those turbulent waters. But the whole brouhaha can and should stimulate new scrutiny of the logic behind the ban-except-for-rape-and-incest position that’s somehow been deemed “moderate,” as explained by Amanda Marcotte at TAP today:

  16. Ametia says:

    Comedian Phyllis Diller has died, her manager tells CNN. Diller was 95.

  17. Ametia says:

    How Romney Could Win the Presidency and Save the Republic (And Why He Won’t)
    By Thomas Magstadt

    At this perilous moment in the nation’s history, nobody is better positioned to restore public trust – or take the White House back for the Republicans – than Mitt Romney. My prediction is that he won’t do either because he believes he can do one (win the presidency) without the other (restoring public trust).

    Oddly enough, while poll after poll shows that most Americans no longer trust our basic institutions, they continue to believe the people who run them got where they are on basis of superior merit and talent. This belief flies in the face of mounting evidence of corruption and incompetence at the top.

    Read on. Love to hear your thoughts on this piece.

  18. rikyrah says:

    A man of weak, malleable principles
    By Steve Benen – Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:56 AM EDT.7

    Paul Ryan had more than a few troubles last week, but one of the more interesting problems is related to his support for stimulus. For all of the far-right congressman’s alleged disgust for the Recovery Act, Ryan repeatedly sought stimulus funds for his district, arguing government spending creates jobs and boosts the economy.

    And then Ryan got caught lying about it.

    Our friends at “Up with Chris Hayes” moved the ball forward with new revelations over the weekend. For those who can’t watch clips online, in 2002, when George W. Bush was president, Ryan loved the idea of economic stimulus from the federal government, celebrating the idea on the House floor.

    What we’re trying to accomplish here is the recognition of the fact that in recessions, unemployment lags on well after a recovery has taken place,” Ryan said at the time. “We have a lot of laid-off workers, and more layoffs are occurring. And we know, as a historical fact, that even if our economy begins to slowly recover, unemployment is going to linger on and on well after that recovery takes place.”

    Ryan’s advocacy of stimulus spending wasn’t limited to Washington, either. When he returned home to face constituents, he used similar language to make the case for the Bush stimulus bill. “You have to spend a little to grow a little,” Ryan told constituents at a town hall in Wisconsin in January 2002, according to the Journal-Times, a local newspaper. “What we’re trying to do is stimulate that part of the economy that’s on its back.”

  19. rikyrah says:

    Ryan worsens Romney’s tax problem(s)
    By Steve Benen – Mon Aug 20, 2012 12:30 PM EDT.

    Paul Ryan waited until very late on Friday afternoon, when his aides assumed no one would be paying any attention, to release his tax returns for the last two years (fewer than he made available to Team Romney). Did we learn anything scandalous? It doesn’t look like it — Ryan and his family paid 20 percent of their adjusted gross income in federal income taxes in 2011 and 15.9 percent in 2010, on income of $323,416 last year and $215,417 the year prior.

    There were no Swiss bank accounts, shell corporations in Bermuda, or stashed cash in the Caymans.

    But the developments were nevertheless interesting. For one thing, we’re reminded that Mitt Romney pays a much lower tax rate than his own running mate, despite Romney’s vast wealth. Even Bill Kristol said this morning, “I think it just seems kinda weird that he pays a lower rate than an awful lot of middle-class people.”

    For another, Ryan’s disclosure keeps the focus on the tax-return issue itself, and Romney’s unyielding secrecy.

    And then there’s the larger issue President Obama raised over the weekend

    Ryan worsens Romney’s tax problem(s)
    By Steve Benen – Mon Aug 20, 2012 12:30 PM EDT.15Paul Ryan waited until very late on Friday afternoon, when his aides assumed no one would be paying any attention, to release his tax returns for the last two years (fewer than he made available to Team Romney). Did we learn anything scandalous? It doesn’t look like it — Ryan and his family paid 20 percent of their adjusted gross income in federal income taxes in 2011 and 15.9 percent in 2010, on income of $323,416 last year and $215,417 the year prior.

    There were no Swiss bank accounts, shell corporations in Bermuda, or stashed cash in the Caymans.

    But the developments were nevertheless interesting. For one thing, we’re reminded that Mitt Romney pays a much lower tax rate than his own running mate, despite Romney’s vast wealth. Even Bill Kristol said this morning, “I think it just seems kinda weird that he pays a lower rate than an awful lot of middle-class people.”

    For another, Ryan’s disclosure keeps the focus on the tax-return issue itself, and Romney’s unyielding secrecy.

    And then there’s the larger issue President Obama raised over the weekend.

    For those who can’t watch clips online, the president said:

    “[T]he centerpiece of my opponent’s entire economic plan is a new five trillion dollar tax cut, a lot of it going to the wealthiest Americans. His new running mate, Congressman Ryan, he put forward a plan that would let Governor Romney pay less than 1 percent in taxes each year. And here’s the kicker — he expects you to pick up the tab.

    “Governor’s Romney tax plan — this is not my analysis now — this is the analysis of independent folks who analyze tax plans for a living. That’s what they do. Their analysis showed that Governor Romney’s tax plan would actually raise taxes on middle class families with children by an average of $2,000. Not to reduce the deficit, not to grow jobs, not to invest in education, but to give another tax cut to folks like him.

    “Now, ask Governor Romney and his running mate, when they’re here in New Hampshire on Monday — they’re going to be coming here on Monday — ask them if that’s fair. Ask them how it will grow the economy. Ask them how it will strengthen the middle class.”

  20. Ametia says:

    PBO: “YOU JUST CAN’T MAKE THINGS UP” Re: Medicare claims by Romney-Ryan

    • Ametia says:

      So the press are asking PBO about Mitt Romney and his TAX RETURNS. SWISS bank accounts. Can’t wait for the video of this PBO presser.

  21. Ametia says:

    Joey Scar and nem where screaming for a bottle of aspirn this morning. GOOD! Their heads need to explode over the GOP fuckery.

    • Ametia says:

      The multinational biotech giant MONSANTO is the world’s leading producer of genetically modified seeds and crops, responsible for 90 percent of the genetically engineered seed on the United States market.

      Monsanto poses one of the greatest threats on the planet to human health and the environment.

      The following television ads were paid for by NationofChange readers and are currently airing across the United States on national television. If you would like to see these ads reach as large an audience as possible, donate now.

      Some key facts about MONSANTO:

      •Monsanto spent 4.2 Million dollars to squash California GMO Labelling [1]
      • Monsanto is responsible for several varieties of “superbugs”. [2]
      •Monsanto’s best-selling herbicide Roundup has spawned over 120 million hectacres of herbicide-resistant superweeds while damaging massive amounts of soil. [3]
      • An Argentinian Study Found that Monsanto’s Roundup Ingredient Causes Birth Defects [4]

  22. rikyrah says:

    Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 08/20/2012
    The Morning Plum: What does Paul Ryan really believe about abortion?
    By Greg Sargent

    The chatter this morning is all about Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin, who responded to a question about abortion by claiming pregnancy from rape is rare: “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”

    Akin subsequently said he misspoke, but Dems are working overtime to nationalize the comments and tie them to the Romney-Ryan ticket and to the GOP. Last night, the Romney campaign released a statement distancing the ticket from Akin’s remarks:

    Governor Romney and Congressman Ryan disagree with Mr. Akin’s statement, and a Romney-Ryan administration would not oppose abortion in instances of rape.
    That’s good to hear, but Ryan did, in fact, co-sponsor a bill last year — along with Akin — whose goal was seemingly to empower Congress and/or the states to outlaw abortion in all cases, including cases of rape or incest. The bill, the Sanctity of Human Life Act, would not, itself, outlaw the procedure. But here are the two key provisions from the bill:

  23. rikyrah says:

    Posted at 10:48 AM ET, 08/20/2012
    Why Romney keeps lying about Obama and welfare
    By Jamelle Bouie

    It’s been three weeks since Mitt Romney first took fire for asserting that the Obama administration “gutted” work requirements in welfare. When the first ad was released, PolitiFact took the lead in debunking its claim that under Obama’s plan, “they just send you your welfare check,” giving it the highest rating of “Pants on Fire.” followed suit, and the Washington Post’s Glenn Kessler offered a similar denunciation, giving the ad “four Pinnochios.”

    But this didn’t deter the Romney campaign. The following week, they released another ad using a similar message. Independent observers again hit Romney’s dishonesty, and a key Republican architect of welfare reform said that “there’s no plausible scenario under which [the change] really constitutes a serious attack on welfare reform.”

    If anything, Obama has strengthened the requirements; in his book “The New New Deal,” Michael Grunwald describes a $1.3 billion program that helped states give work to more welfare recipients. It was lauded by governors on both sides, but was eventually killed by congressional Republicans eager to land a blow on Obama

  24. rikyrah says:

    An Unserious Man


    Mitt Romney’s choice of Paul Ryan as his running mate led to a wave of pundit accolades. Now, declared writer after writer, we’re going to have a real debate about the nation’s fiscal future. This was predictable: never mind the Tea Party, Mr. Ryan’s true constituency is the commentariat, which years ago decided that he was the Honest, Serious Conservative, whose proposals deserve respect even if you don’t like him.

    But he isn’t and they don’t. Ryanomics is and always has been a con game, although to be fair, it has become even more of a con since Mr. Ryan joined the ticket.

  25. rikyrah says:

    .Accidental candor in Ohio
    By Steve Benen – Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:22 AM EDT.

    As a rule, Republicans engaged in voter suppression remember their talking points. Sure, they’re imposing the most sweeping voting restrictions since Jim Crow, but it’s not about rigging the elections to help the GOP — heaven forbid — it’s about protecting the integrity of the process.

    Any serious look at the underlying policy — using voter-ID laws to combat imaginary fraud, for example — exposes the arguments as a sham, but at least Republicans appreciate the value of lying well, knowing that systematic disenfranchisement of minorities might be frowned upon.

    Once in a while, though, conservatives slip. In Pennsylvania, the state House Majority Leader, confessed in June that the Republican voter-ID law would “allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania.”

    And in Ohio, where early voting opportunities have been expanded in Republican counties and limited in Democratic counties, we’re seeing some additional accidental candor.

    [Ohio’s Republican Secretary of State, Jon Husted] said he based his decision to bar weekend hours after consulting with local elections officials, many of whom were concerned about cost. But Aaron Ockerman, executive director of the Ohio Association of Election Officials, told The Dispatch that “we would make that work” if directed to stay open until, say, noon the Saturday before the election.

    Of course, such decisions are at least as much about politics as policy. […]

    “I guess I really actually feel we shouldn’t contort the voting process to accommodate the urban — read African-American — voter-turnout machine,” said Doug Preisse, chairman of the county Republican Party and elections board member who voted against weekend hours, in an email to The Dispatch. “Let’s be fair and reasonable.”

    Got that? If black people are allowed to vote the weekend before the election, it would be an undue “accommodation.”

  26. rikyrah says:

    Soledad O’Brien Takes On GOP OpSec Operative Scott Taylor
    By karoli

    If CNN is planning their comeback by letting people like Soledad O’Brien have their way with interviews, they’re on the right track. While there’s a long road ahead, O’Brien is one of the bright spots in an otherwise dismal array of right wing hacks.

    In this clip she takes on OpSec President Scott Taylor by pointing out all of his Republican connections and challenging him on his non-partisanship. His reply was what one might expect. He claims to be “an American before [he] is a Republican.”

    Yeah, right.

    This entire segment is an example of how a journalist can allow the other side to be heard and still clarify for the audience that they actually do have an agenda beyond their “America first” theme.

    My one criticism is that she didn’t take aim at the leaks that outed Valerie Plame, thanks to Dick Cheney and yes, CNN. But she can try for that next time.

    Transcript after the jump:

  27. rikyrah says:

    Todd Akin did not come up with this idea of “legitimate rape” on his own …. it’s been floating around in the mite-infested right-wing air since the 1980s….

    …. If you’ve been reading about this since yesterday, you’ve probably come across the figure of 32,000 pregnancies per year in the United States that result from rape….

    I have to say that number astonished and sickened me …. I read elsewhere that 1,870 women are raped every day in the land of the free. Do the math. The numbers check out. Holy crap. That’s like war. We’re living amidst a war. And what does Akin propose to do about it – and, for that matter, Paul Ryan?

    …. Michelle Goldberg was on this case in January 2011, writing about HR 3, the bill that sought to make a distinction between “forcible rape” and “statutory rape” …. Two of the original cosponsors? Akin and Ryan.

    Will this remark put Ryan on the spot? It damn well better. How many of those 1,870 women raped every day does he think weren’t really raped?

  28. rikyrah says:

    Ametia, I added to your Akin post.

  29. Ametia says:

    Good Morning, Everyone! :-)

Leave a Reply