Wednesday Open Thread | Curtis Mayfield Week!

Curtis Lee Mayfield (June 3, 1942 – December 26, 1999) was an American soul, R&B, and funk singer, songwriter, and record producer. He is best known for his anthemic music with The Impressions during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s and for composing the soundtrack to the blaxploitation film Super Fly, Mayfield is highly regarded as a pioneer of funk and of politically conscious African-American music.[1][2] He was also a multi-instrumentalist who played the guitar, bass, piano, saxophone, and drums. Mayfield is a winner of both the Grammy Legend Award (in 1994) and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award (in 1995), and he was a double inductee into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, inducted as a member of The Impressions into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991, and again in 1999 as a solo artist. He is also a two-time Grammy Hall of Fame inductee

About SouthernGirl2

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

  1. rikyrah says:

    Taniel @Taniel

    Obama’s Ohio lead has soared to 2.6% based on new provisionals. It stood at 1.9% this morning. OH more solidly blue than it had appeared.

  2. rikyrah says:

    Greg Giroux @greggiroux

    Obama’s 60.5% in Franklin Co (Columbus-Ohio) best by Dem presidential nominee there since at least 1920. Obama 59.6% ’08

  3. rikyrah says:

    Obama sides with Reid on filibuster reform
    By Steve Benen
    Wed Nov 28, 2012 12:35 PM EST

    A sitting president obviously has no direct role over how congressional chambers conduct their business, but President Obama’s newly announced support for filibuster reform is still an important step in the larger effort

    Jumping squarely into the white-hot debate currently being waged in the Senate, the White House on Wednesday said it supports Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s efforts to change the rules of the upper chamber.

    “The President has said many times that the American people are demanding action,” White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer said in a statement to The Huffington Post. “They want to see progress, not partisan delay games. That hasn’t changed, and the President supports Majority Leader Reid’s efforts to reform the filibuster process.”

    “Over the past few years important pieces of legislation like the DREAM Act, the Paycheck Fairness Act, and the American Jobs Act weren’t even allowed to be debated, and judicial nominations and key members of the administration are routinely forced to wait months for an up-or-down vote,” Pfeiffer added. “The American people deserve a United States Senate that puts them first, instead of partisan delay.”

    This is, as best as I can tell, the first time the Obama White House has explicitly endorsed institutional Senate reforms. Indeed, as Sam Stein noted, there was a related effort two years ago, and at the time, the president stayed out of the fight.

  4. rikyrah says:

    Smear campaign against Rice broadens, intensifies
    By Steve Benen
    Wed Nov 28, 2012 3:04 PM EST

    The only meaningful complaint raised by Republicans against Susan Rice is that she shared the collective judgment on the Benghazi attack on Sunday shows. It gives new meaning to the phrase “blame the messenger” — Rice didn’t write the CIA talking points, she simply told the public what they said, just as she was asked to do.

    And yet, the Republican campaign against her appears to be intensifying. The latest criticism comes by way of Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), who, next year, will ostensibly be the Senate’s only GOP moderate.

    Rice paid Collins a courtesy visit this morning, and the Maine Republican later told reporters that Rice served as assistant secretary of state for African affairs when al Qaeda attacked American embassies in Kenya and Somalia: “What troubles me so much is the Benghazi attack in many ways echoes the attacks on those embassies in 1998, when Susan Rice was head of the African region for our State Department.”

    This is pretty twisted — to suggest the assistant secretary of state for African affairs is responsible for security decisions at every U.S. diplomatic outpost in an enormous continent is absurd, even by the standards of congressional Republicans — but as the smear campaign against Rice unfolds, it’s also quickly becoming the norm.

    Collins added that Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) “would be an excellent appointment and would be easily confirmed by his colleagues,” thus boosting the Republican Party’s partisan goals of shrinking the Democratic caucus.


    In the meantime, GOP antics are making Democrats getting angrier by the day.

  5. rikyrah says:

    Top Romney Adviser Brags About Losing Poor, Minority Voters To Obama

    Mitt Romney can take some solace in his devastating loss on Nov. 6: at least he won the voters who really count.

    That’s the thesis anyway of top adviser Stuart Stevens, who penned an op-ed in the Washington Post on Wednesday arguing that by winning wealthier and whiter voters, Romney secured the moral victory over Obama.

    “On Nov. 6, Mitt Romney carried the majority of every economic group except those with less than $50,000 a year in household income,” Stevens wrote. “That means he carried the majority of middle-class voters. While John McCain lost white voters under 30 by 10 points, Romney won those voters by seven points, a 17-point shift.”

    According to Stevens, “The Republican Party has problems, but as we go forward, let’s remember that any party that captures the majority of the middle class must be doing something right.” As a result, “Republican ideals — Mitt Romney — carried the day.”

  6. rikyrah says:

    Public School Enlists Controversial Private Prison Firm To Conduct Drug Raids

    By Rebecca Leber on Nov 27, 2012 at 6:00 pm

    The nation’s largest private prison corporation appears to be playing a part in drug raids at some Arizona public schools, PRWatch reports. On October 31, Vista Grande High School in Case Grande, Arizona had its first drug raid in the school’s four-year history. Three students were arrested for marijuana possession, and if one is charged with a felony, she could face prison.

    One of the four parties involved was Corrections Corporation of America, which operates private prison facilities notorious for poor treatment and violations. Neither the Police Department Public Information Officer nor the high school’s principal saw a problem with the company’s participation:

    According to Casa Grande Police Department (CGPD) Public Information Officer Thomas Anderson, four “law enforcement agencies” took part in the operation: CGPD (which served as the lead agency and operation coordinator), the Arizona Department of Public Safety, the Gila River Indian Community Police Department, and Corrections Corporation of America (CCA).

    It is the involvement of CCA — the nation’s largest private, for-profit prison corporation — that causes this high school “drug sweep” to stand out as unusual; CCA is not, despite CGPD’s evident opinion to the contrary, a law enforcement agency. […]

    Despite the obvious differences between CCA and actual law enforcement agencies, those involved in the Vista Grande High School drug sweep seem unable to differentiate between CCA employees and law enforcement officers.

”CCA is like a skip and a hop away from us– as far as the one in Florence,” said Anderson. “We work pretty closely with all surrounding agencies, whatever kind of law enforcement they are– be they police, or immigration and naturalization, or the prison systems. So, yeah, this seems pretty regular to me.”

    CCA has a strong presence in the Arizona county, where it operates six facilities. The state recently awarded CCA a contract for 1,000 new beds. Arizona already houses 6,500 of its inmates in private prisons. CCA does not save the state money, either. According to a report by American Friends Service Committee, the state overpaid its private prison industry by $10 million between 2008 and 2010. In return, the facilities had 157 serious security failings.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Wisconsin Election Clerks Fight Gov. Walker’s Plan To Make Voter Registration More Difficult

    When Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI) proposed repealing a decades-old state law that allows citizens to register on Election Day, he said his motivation was to make the process easier for the state’s municipal election clerks. To Walker’s surprise, one of the first major groups to push back on his proposal is the Wisconsin Municipal Clerks Association.

    In fact, the organization’s election communications chairwoman Diane Hermann-Brown said, eliminating Election Day Registration would actually make their jobs significantly more difficult. The Wisconsin State Journal has more:[….]

  8. rikyrah says:

    Knockoff of Michelle Obama Election Night Dress Sells Out in 2 Days
    .By Lylah M. Alphonse, Senior Editor, Yahoo! Shine | Fashion – 6 hours ago

    When First Lady Michelle Obama stepped on stage on election night, the entire world was watching—and fashion copy-cats were taking note. Last week, British retailer Asda unveiled their new line of George brand holiday dresses and “The Michelle”—a $32 metallic red-and-black floral number inspired by the first lady’s pricey Michael Kors creation—sold out within 48 hours.

    “Our Michelle Obama inspired flower jacquard dress was an instant hit amongst shoppers,” George brand director Fiona Lambert told The Daily Mail.

    The party dress’s popularity was no accident: It was designed and named after George and Asda shoppers chose Michelle Obama as the most-impressive female dresser, ranking her ahead of Gwyneth Paltrow and Victoria Beckham. The entire fashion-icon inspired line—the big box retailer’s new Moda “Impress Dresses” collection—launched on November 21, and sales have been brisk.

  9. rikyrah says:

    Comedian Katt Williams allegedly leads police on a tricycle chase in Sacramento

    Comedian Katt Williams is under investigation after allegedly leading Capitol Protection CHP officers on a hot pursuit chase in downtown Sacramento on Sunday, according to TMZ.

    Williams was spotted driving down K Street when he almost hit five pedestrians on a tricycle. Officers are not amused by the incident and this most recent escapade could land the comedian behind bars in a Sacramento jail cell

  10. Ametia says:

    Today, President Obama and Democrats made the stakes clear. If middle class tax cuts aren’t passed, $2,200 will be coming out of your wallet next year.

    For most people, $2,200 means food on the kitchen table and healthcare when we are sick. It means transportation to work and presents for the holiday season.

    Let’s make sure the GOP knows what $2,200 means to middle class families. Tweet about what $2,200 means to you.

    This holiday season, the GOP wants to hold your money hostage to make sure the wealthy get tax breaks too.

    Fortunately, there is a bill in Congress waiting to pass that would give the wealthy the same tax break as everyone else. Every American will receive a tax break on the first $250,000 they earn.

    We all agree that middle class families deserve a tax break. Let’s make this happen now. Share what $2,200 means to you.


    Jeremy Bird

  11. Ametia says:


    Foreign Relations

    The Secretary of State is the chief advisor to the President of the United States on foreign matters both political and military. While the Secretary of State has no military authority, he or she is often uniquely able to gauge the response of a given nation to a particular military act.

    The Secretary of State is responsible for the administration and management of foreign embassies and consulate offices. Foreign trade missions and even some intelligence assets report directly to the Secretary of State, and the consular officers are all sworn to obey the directives set forth by the President of the United States, sworn through the Secretary of State.

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    The Secretary of State also consults on economic issues involving foreign nations and is responsible for advising the President on which courses of action will best serve the United States in the foreign arena. The person holding the office of the Secretary of State is responsible for the negotiation of new treaties as well.

    Read more: Job Description for the Secretary of State |


  12. President Obama: “Susan Rice is extraordinary…Couldn’t be prouder of the job she’s done.”


    Did you hear that, John McCain? Bite me!

  13. POTUS, FLOTUS, Valerie Jarrett, Susan Rice, Eric Holder..the GOP is intimidated by all that black power. It’s very threatening to them. Eat your peas!

  14. rikyrah says:

    Can the Dems Keep it Going?
    by BooMan
    Wed Nov 28th, 2012 at 01:52:26 PM EST

    Stuart Stevens served as Mitt Romney’s chief strategist during the campaign. He has taken a lot of blame for the shortcomings of Romney’s effort, but he took to the Washington Post to defend himself, Gov. Romney, and the campaign they ran. One thing he said stuck out for me.

    There was a time not so long ago when the problems of the Democratic Party revolved around being too liberal and too dependent on minorities. Obama turned those problems into advantages and rode that strategy to victory. But he was a charismatic African American president with a billion dollars, no primary and a media that often felt morally conflicted about being critical. How easy is that to replicate?

    There is a bunch wrong with that paragraph but I want to focus on the last sentence. How easy will it be to replicate the success of Barack Obama’s two presidential campaigns without Obama as the candidate?

    I think the likelihood of replicating those efforts depend on a few factors, but the only one that Mr. Stevens correctly identified as a problem is Obama’s unique charisma. His charisma, discipline, and skill as a candidate cannot be replicated. However, he didn’t win because he had a billion dollars or because the press went easy on him or because he’s black or because his policies were liberal. And, while I’ll concede that the lack of a primary helped him this time around (although not in the first debate), his rough and tumble competition against Hillary Clinton may have been a necessary component for preparing him to beat John McCain in 2008.

    But we are talking about the future, and after eight years of having a black family in the White House, there has been some reshuffling of the two parties’ brands. The GOP is whiter than ever and the Democratic Party is more identified with the changing demographics of the country. Both changes are alienating people and growing the polarization between the parties. It may be that a 2016 campaign by Hillary Clinton will discover that Arkansas doesn’t love her family anymore, and that West Virginia and Missouri are not going to come back into the fold. On the other hand, it could be that Obama’s race is disguising the true weakness of the Republican Party. It could be that a 2016 Democratic candidate who is seen as a sound bet to continue Obama’s policies and solidify his legacy will have no trouble holding onto his coalition, but will also find a much bigger pool of white working class voters willing to give their candidacy a look. Honestly, I suspect that GOP is only hanging on as well as it is by fueling itself on the fumes of racial fear and resentment.

    On the subject of Obama’s race, rather than determining whether he won or lost the last two elections, it had more of an effect on the shape of his victories. I do not believe that states like West Virginia, Arkansas, and Missouri that were friendly to Bill Clinton would have turned so sharply against the Democratic Party if Hillary had been the nominee and president for the last four years. On the other hand, Obama many have run stronger than Hillary would have in some states with heavy black and Latino populations. If we’re talking 2008, Clinton might have won Missouri and lost North Carolina, for example.

  15. Joy Hewitt on Susan Rice

    I am so tired of this unwarranted attack! She initiates a meeting that she didn’t HAVE to have with the McCain gang. She admits, with acting the CIA director Michael Morell next to her, the initial information she received FROM THE INTELLIGENCE, was different than what really occurred. So then the McCain gang says after the meeting, they are more troubled and disturbed than before. Seriously??? Shouldn’t they now have issue with the Intelligence instead of Dr. Rice??? Since THEY gave her the unclassified information to discuss in the first place??? This attack is a disgrace!
    That’s OK. She will get the last laugh!

  16. Where is your support of Ambassador Rice, Hillary? Speak up! NOW.IS.THE.TIME.!

  17. Ametia says:

    Source: TPM

    White House Backs Reid’s Filibuster Reforms

    The White House on Wednesday indicated it was in favor of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s move to change the rules regarding the filibuster, the Huffington Post reports.

    The President has said many times that the American people are demanding action,” White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer said in a statement to The Huffington Post. “They want to see progress, not partisan delay games. That hasn’t changed, and the President supports Senator Reid’s efforts to reform the filibuster process.”

    “Over the past few years important pieces of legislation like the DREAM Act, the Paycheck Fairness Act, and the American Jobs Act weren’t even allowed to be debated, and judicial nominations and key members of the administration are routinely forced to wait months for an up-or-down vote,” Pfeiffer added. “The American people deserve a United States Senate that puts them first, instead of partisan delay.”

    Read more:

  18. Ametia says:

    Wonder what kind of temperament you had when office intern Lori Klausutis died (was killed) in your office, Joe Scarborough?

    MSNBC Host Joe Scarborough Says Republicans Should Attack Susan Rice Over Her ‘Temperament’

    On Wednesday morning’s Morning Joe, host Joe Scarborough was doing a fine job of illustrating the dishonesty and capriciousness of the vendetta against Ambassador Susan Rice that’s being carried out by GOP Senate Power Trio John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and Kelly Ayotte, but just when it seemed like all was lost, and Republicans might actually get some good advice from Scarborough (which they would ignore anyway), he offered a suggestion. “There are so many ways to go after Susan Rice,” Scarborough said, beginning with “whether she even has the temperament to be Secretary of State.”


  19. Ametia says:


    President Obama and his former rival Mitt Romney will meet Thursday for their first get-together since the November 6 election, according to a statement from White House press secretary Jay Carney.

    “On Thursday, Governor Romney will have a private lunch at the White House with President Obama in the Private Dining Room,” Carney wrote. “It will be the first opportunity they have had to visit since the election. There will be no press coverage of the meeting.’

    In his acceptance speech on election night, Obama congratulated Romney on his campaign, and said he was looking forward “to sitting down with Governor Romney to talk about where we can work together to move this country forward.”

  20. Ametia says:

    Minnesota is NOT playin’

    19 boy babies born in a row at Minnesota hospital

    A Minnesota hospital may have gotten itself into the record books by delivering 19 baby boys in a row.

    The staff at the University of Minnesota Medical Center in Minneapolis certainly had never heard of that happening before. For more than 62 straight hours no girls were born in the hospital’s delivery room, CBS Minnesota reports.

    “I actually delivered baby 18 and we knew that the number had been pretty high,” Dr. Samantha Hoffman, an assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology and women’s health, told the station.

    The deliveries took place from about 5:00 p.m. Friday, Nov. 23 until 7:15 a.m. Monday, Nov. 26, when a baby girl was born. The weight of all 19 boys totaled 115 pounds.

  21. rikyrah says:

    November 27, 2012 11:30 AM

    White Identity Politics

    By Ed Kilgore

    Of all the conservative raps in circulation, the one I have the most trouble with personally is the anti-anti-racism meme: the idea that white people are being persecuted for the color of their skin by a dominant coalition of minorities and honky quislings. And invariably, the proof of that proposition is that those crying “racism” are themselves race-conscious, which makes them guilty of the original sin.

    In his latest column, the Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto ups the ante a bit, warning “race-card” wielding Democrats that they are being so bigoted towards white people that they may soon encourage the rise of a White Power movement:

    This seems likely to weaken the taboo against white identity politics. Whites who are not old enough to remember the pre-civil-rights era—Rep. Duncan, for instance, was born in 1966—have every reason to feel aggrieved by being targeted in this way.

    The “Rep. Duncan” in question is Rep. Jeff Duncan of South Carolina, who authored a letter to the president denouncing Susan Rice, which was criticized by the Washington Post. The Post in passing noted that the letter was heavily subscribed to by white males from the former Confederacy, which is what sent Taranto off on his anti-anti-racism tangent.

    So poor Jeff Duncan is a victim of bigotry because he’s too young to have personally stood in the door of a schoolhouse trying to block desegregation, and probably too young to have shouted racial epithets in public and gotten away with it. According to Taranto, this man who represents a South Carolina tradition of entrenched and militant white conservative power that is one of America’s most distinctive and universally understood and historically significant (it did, after all, touch off a bit of a war once upon a time) phenomena should feel “aggrieved” for being suspected of anything other than pure motives in singling out an African-American diplomat for a rare House letter to the president on a potential cabinet nomination

  22. rikyrah says:

    November 28, 2012 9:23 AM“
    Entitlement Reform” and Health Care Spending

    By Ed Kilgore

    To hear most conservatives, Democrats are resisting “entitlement reform” as part of a fiscal “fix” for some combination of three reasons: (1) they fear the wrath of “the left” or “the base,” their counterpart to the folks on the Right that will go crazy if tax rates go up; (2) they are mired in the policies of the past, having for too long relied on expanded entitlement spending as bait for voters; and (3) they ultimately hope to make entitlements even larger as part of a plan to transform America into a European-style socialist state.

    Interestingly enough, most of these assessments ignore what liberals are actually saying about the “entitlement reforms” conservatives keep proposing, at least with respect to the big targets of Medicare, Medicaid, and now Obamacare: they would move in exactly the wrong direction from steps needed to hold down the long-term costs of these programs, aside from the terrible effect they would have on beneficiaries. TNR”s Jon Cohen sums it up:

    Contrary to what conservatives say and even many centrists seem to believe, the high cost of Medicare and Medicaid isn’t a by-product of government inefficiency. On the contrary, Medicare historically has held down costs as well as, if not better than, private insurance on a per capita basis. That’s thanks, in part, to the administrative advantages of a centralized government program and Medicare’s enormous power to set prices. Medicaid is cheaper still, to the point where, honestly, it’s underfunded. The programs keep getting more expensive, relative to inflation, because medical care keeps getting more expensive—and, in the case of Medicare, because of the increase in the number of people coming on the program. That’s due to a variety of factors: paying too much for services and to the people who provide them; delivering a lot of treatments that are unnecessary, unhelpful, or even harmful; focusing too much on acute treatment when we should be focusing on preventative care and other ways of keeping people healthy

    You don’t solve the problems Jon is talking about by privatizing Medicare and Medicaid delivery systems, or exposing beneficiaries or the states to higher costs, much less by dumping beneficiaries from the programs altogether. And you sure don’t solve them by disabling or reducing the scope of Obamacare, which introduces precisely the kind of reforms that might in the long run hold down health care costs.

  23. rikyrah says:

    A price for everything”

    by Steven D
    Wed Nov 28th, 2012 at 09:14:35 AM EST

    That’s what John Boehner told President Obama when Obama told him that there had to be a deal on the debt ceiling. But he wasn’t really talking to Obama – he was talking to the people of the United States who re-elected Obama to a second term and helped Dems pick up seats in the Senate and House. In essence he’s telling all of us the price for the Democrats winning the election is that the Republicans in the House are going to ruin the US economy if they don’t get what they want – no tax cuts for the rich and cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. For starters – repeal of Obamacare is also “on the table.”

    This is how the Movie Mafia Gang Lords talk. It’s extortion. It’s a direct threat to tank the country’s economy. In fact, we’ve seen this real life political hostage taking before in 2010 and 2011 when Republicans played a crude, reckless and dangerous game with the lives of their fellow citizens as part of a naked grab for complete power over the budget and also to wreck Obama’s re-election by any means necessary. That a last minute deal to keep the Bush tax cuts in place resulted in a downgrading of America’s credit rating and damaged the economy was just “collateral damage” as far as Republicans were concerned.

  24. rikyrah says:

    November 27, 2012 3:37 PM
    The Very Last Ditch

    By Ed Kilgore

    Perhaps it’s a testament to the size and breadth of Barack Obama’s victory on November 6, or maybe it’s because so many conservatives were stunned by MItt Romney’s failure to win by a landslide, but the acceptance of the president’s re-election by U.S. conservatives has been surprisingly widespread. So far almost no one has charged Obama “stole” the election through voter fraud, and conservatives are already looking forward to 2014.

    Ah, but in some of the more exotic precincts of the Tea Folk, post-election resistance has been hardier, as evidenced by this report from Idaho by Betsy Russell:

    A state senator from north-central Idaho is touting a scheme that’s been circulating on tea party blogs, calling for states that supported Mitt Romney to refuse to participate in the Electoral College in a move backers believe would change the election result.

    Sen. Sheryl Nuxoll, R-Cottonwood, sent an article out on Twitter headed, “A ‘last chance’ to have Mitt Romney as President in January (it’s still not too late)….

    Turns out Nuxoll received her inspiration from an article by our old buddy Judson Phillips, who staged the wacky National Tea Party Convention in 2010 that gave Sarah Palin a nationally televised speech opportunity.

  25. rikyrah says:

    Republicans Kick Cripples

    by BooMan
    Tue Nov 27th, 2012 at 09:02:10 PM EST

    It’s in the Constitution. You can’t ratify a treaty without the consent of two-thirds of the Senate. Presently, that means that you need 67 votes. It also means that you can’t have more than 33 senators opposed to ratification. They had a vote in the Senate today on something called the motion to proceed. Senate Majority Leader wanted to begin debate on a treaty called the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. It’s basically an international treaty that recognizes the rights of disabled people and it is based in large part on the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. You would hope that we could at least debate ratifying a treaty like this, and it turned out that we could. The Senate requires 60 votes to pass the motion to proceed and Harry Reid got 61 votes. The problem is that 36 senators voted against even having a debate about the merits of ratifying the bill, and that is three more than opponents will need to defeat it.
    Some Republican say they oppose ratifying treaties during a lameduck session of Congress, but that makes little sense because the Democratic majority will be stronger next year. Some Republicans say they are opposed because they don’t want to surrender our sovereignty to the United Nations, but the treaty wouldn’t surrender any U.S. sovereignty.

    The Republicans voted overwhelmingly to invade Iraq and create tens of thousands of disabled Americans as a result. And it turns out that they don’t like disabled people any better than gays, blacks, Latinos, or single women in law school who use contraception.


  26. rikyrah says:

    November 26, 2012

    Is the Party over?

    Bob Shrum does a superb job of reflecting on the “party that doesn’t comprehend or simply can’t respond to the dimensions of its 2012 defeat.” Because of its base.

    That’s the GOP’s arch and possibly insurmountable difficulty–not ideology, not future demographics, not abortion or contraception or gay marriage, not turnout, not Mitt Romney, not not not. This is no negative problem for the GOP. Its problem, rather, is that of a weird positive kind–its base. It is killing the party. It is ignorant and intransigent and wholly out of touch. It is an all-but-certain dead end, yet it’s also the only asset the party has left. If the party’s leaders abandon the base then there is no GOP; yet if the party’s leaders pamper the base then there is, in time, no GOP.

    Some organisms just die. Nothing can be done. It’s almost miraculous that the Democratic Party, which is, quite literally, the oldest political party in the world, has lasted as long as it has. It has survived and prospered, however, by making necessary adjustments at critical junctures–by ceasing rebellious jabber, by being urban-machine responsive and immigrant-welcoming, by realigning in the 1930s against capitalism’s harsher realities, by promoting the cause of human rights for all Americans in the 1960s and beyond.

    Republicans, though, have entrenched, not adjusted. They’ve become a regional party of the Old South and fittingly they’ve all the Old South’s deadly faults: they’re insular, they’re nativist, they’re inflexible, they’re paranoid, and they’re kinda in-bred stupid. If they are capable of changing, it might nonetheless just be too late.

  27. rikyrah says:

    November 27, 2012

    With baited breath

    As I was saying …

    … so says Ed Kilgore and others:

    The remarkable ability of conservatives to drag American politics to the Right by taking extremist positions and then offering to “compromise” by accepting policies deemed conservative the week before last is hardly a new thing…. But the MSM keeps taking the bait, which is why we now have Lindsay Graham and Saxby Chambliss being lionized for making fake concessions to stop America from plunging over a fake “fiscal cliff,” asking only the small concession that the Bush tax cuts, the principal cause of current long-term public debt, be extended forever, and oh, by the way, could we also cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid benefits?

    Republicans must be beside themselves with wonder at their own dazzling bullshit, but particularly at how the media just keep buying it

  28. rikyrah says:

    November 28, 2012

    Compromise and Lincoln, Roosevelt, and Obama

    Greg Sargent relates that subsequent to a White House meeting the word from left-leaning pressure groups is: “[WH officials] expect taxes to go up on the wealthy and to protect Medicare and Medicaid benefits. They feel confident that they don’t have to compromise” (italics mine).

    It might be helpful to recall that two of American history’s greatest compromisers–Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Roosevelt–were also, in the principled end, two of American history’s greatest immovable objects.

    The lesson to be learned from Spielberg’s “Lincoln,” as virtually every reviewer has emphasized ad nauseam, is that of the 16th president’s extraordinary capacity for difficult compromise. And that of course is true enough. Yet there’s another lesson–or straightforward fact of history, if one prefers–that runs just underneath the film’s surface message and should not be overlooked: Lincoln was hellbent on militarily clobbering the South into total submission; there would be no eleventh-hour, life-saving, peace-securing “deal” suggesting anything but the Confederacy’s unmitigated defeat. On that, Lincoln simply would not budge.

    Similarly, Roosevelt–whose New Deal programs were marbled monuments to faction-infuriating compromise–shocked the Allied leadership and more than a few of its generals with his 1943 demand for the Axis Powers’ “unconditional surrender.” No talks, no negotiations, no deal, which, by shortening the war’s duration, might well have saved millions of lives. Roosevelt, though, stood on pure principle–and history has judged him correct.

    I’ve taken some tee-heeing criticism in the past for comparing Obama’s presidential style and potential greatness to those of Lincoln and Roosevelt. Perhaps some of the criticism is justified. We can’t yet know. But, should we reverse the Clausewitzian maxim–so that politics is but an extension of war by other means–we’re about to find out.

  29. rikyrah says:

    Open Thread: Erick Erickson for Senate (Primary)!

    By Anne Laurie November 27th, 2012

    Via commentor Martin, Politico reports that the Voice of the GOP Gated Community is very disappointed by his so-called ‘elected representative’ for talking about going off Grover Norquist’s reservation:

    In a 900-word indictment of Sen. Saxby Chambliss, RedState editor and CNN contributor Erick Erickson described the Georgia Republican Tuesday as “waffling around like a dog off its leash for the first time.”…

    The RedState post, which laid out the conservative case in full against Chambliss, read a lot like a campaign manifesto, which maybe it was: Erickson said Tuesday evening on his radio show he’d been approached “by serious people” to consider a primary challenge and is giving it “prayerful consideration.”

    An Erickson primary challenge would certainly make for great political theater. He’s won elected office before—he served one term on the Macon City Council—and could complicate Chambliss’s re-election bid. But as a leading conservative blogger, radio talk show host and frequent cable television presence, Erickson’s also got a long trail of writing and video that might not be so helpful in a statewide campaign…

    Murphy the Trickster God does not love me enough to make this travesty happen

  30. rikyrah says:

    From The People’s View

    How Obama Killed the Norquist Pledge

    Monday, November 26, 2012 | Posted by Deaniac83 at 11:24 AM

    Under the pressure of the fiscal cliff, Republicans are beginning to buckle. And the first casualty seems to be – drumrolls, please – the Grover Norquist pledge. I mean, when Republicans from blood-red states like Georgia and South Carolina start telling Grover Norquist to go suck a thumb, you know something palpable has changed in American politics. The one pledge that has come to define Republican governance – the “taxes = baaad” paradigm – is falling apart.

    Why? Sure, it’s because President Obama won re-election and that fiscal cliff – the one that Republican set up for themselves – is coming crashing down on them at the end of the year. But how did we get here?

    You see, the prevailing wisdom in the beltway is that we ended up in the bind of the fiscal cliff through Washington’s paralysis of governing. And that’s partially true. But that the paralysis is resulting today in Republicans abandoning their central economic philosophy wasn’t a given. In fact, it wouldn’t have happened were it not for the brilliant setup created by the president.

    Too many people in the beltway seem to internalize an interesting case of cognitive dissonance about this president: that he is both a brilliant tactician who put together an unprecedented coalition to become the first Democrat to win a majority of the popular vote twice since FDR and that he’s a dumb negotiator who gives away football fields to opponents and “negotiates against himself.” Both things cannot be true, regardless of how much the beltway insists on both.

    So what gives? Barack Obama is the most brilliant strategic mind of our time – perhaps since FDR. Anyone who believes that he did not figure out the Republican tactic of obstructing everything and being hell bent on robbing the public sector of all possible revenue within his first few months in office is a fool. He did figure it out. And when he figured it out, he set out to systematically destroy it. But being a strategic genius, he knew that it wasn’t going to be done in a day. In the first two years, he had sizeable (but by no means non-obstructable) Democratic majorities in the House and the Senate, and he needed to get the big policy agenda through: the largest economic recovery package in history, health care reform, Wall Street reform, equal pay for women, credit card reform, student loan reform, repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, keeping the safety net tight while the economy was still in upheaval.

    He also more than likely knew that doing all these big reforms through essentially only Democratic votes will take compromises within the Democratic caucus that the purist progressives wouldn’t like. In fact, they wouldn’t like it so much that they would actively tell people to sit home in 2010. That, combined with the still-volatile economy gave Republicans what they thought was the chance of a lifetime – to send a shockwave of red tide. Republicans won that election and believed it was vindication for their tactic to hold back progress. They saw a chance to kill off the progressive president’s agenda once and forever by doubling down on their obstruction, which they assumed would send them to victory in 2012.

    But then, the tax cuts were going to expire at the end of 2010, as well as unemployment and other safety net benefits. Triumphant from an election, Republicans made a deadly mistake: they took the Norquist pledge as biblical. When the president offered them a deal they couldn’t refuse – freezing all tax rates and enacting a new one for the payroll tax, and asked for an extension of the safety net benefits as the price, they saw what was a brilliant setup for a cave-in from a politically rebuked president. And really, all they needed was to extend the tax rates till 2012, since they believed their own hype that this president would be a goner after this election.

    But the payroll tax cut, the middle class tax cuts, the unemployment insurance benefits and other safety net benefits aren’t … how do I say… “gifts”, as Mitt Romney so eloquently put it of late. They are, on the contrary, an economic stimulus of a massive size. All of that helped spur consumer spending, stablized home prices, and began creating jobs. See, the very deal that Republicans thought was a concession from a shellacked president was setting up the case for an improved economy, and thus, the president’s re-election.

    Republicans continued to live in their happy bubble through 2011 – when in the much maligned debt limit deal, they agreed to huge cuts on defense while the president sequestered out Medicare benefits, Social Security, and programs for the poor. In fact, the Republicans were in such denial that John Boehner bragged about getting 98% of what he wanted. But all of those cuts too would come at the beginning of 2013, when, Republicans of course believed there would be a new right wing president. Nothing got cut up front, the president got is debt limit increase, and Republicans never bothered to get out of their happy bubble. They were joined in that bubble by a lot of “liberals” whose first inkling has always been that this president was betraying us despite the record.

    All of this – the Republican bubble – hinged on a single thing, however. Their fantasy would or would not become reality based on a singular event: the 2012 presidential election. The Republicans bet their house on their inside-the-bubble idea that they were successful in their obstruction and thus this president would be a one-term president. The President, on the other hand, made a different bet with the same hinge. He bet that he could make the case to the American people to return him to office. While Republicans did everything with an eye towards a goal of making this president a failure, the president put his presidency on the line to do the right thing. And he took his case to the American people.

    The American people listened, and we sent the president back to the White House with a thumping victory. Suddenly, the Republican bubble burst. Suddenly, their house of cards collapsed in on itself. Suddenly, the GOP found a strengthened, re-elected President who ran on the promise of raising taxes on the wealthiest, and won. Twice. The real “demographic” the GOP should be worried about isn’t just the increasingly ethnically diverse face of America but a the spring of a new American economic patriotism that believes in the common good and in investing in our people by ensuring everyone pay their fair share.

    Republicans were not prepared. They weren’t prepared for the possibility that the president would win re-election and that all of their obstruction would blow up in their faces in the form of the fiscal cliff. And now they are scurrying like roaches to figure out a way to avoid the cliff, knowing the president holds most of the cards. They put a lot of things on the bet that Obama would lose, and now that it didn’t happen, they are abandoning their pledge never ever to ask the rich to pay their fair share. Right now, saving their defense jobs and not being blamed for another recession is suddenly more important to them than holding firm on the Norquist pledge.


    Well, I guess there’s no better revenge than being right. A month ago, it would have been unthinkable that Republicans would ever abandon the Norquist pledge. But that is exactly what is happening right now. Republicans are killing the pledge, doing it publicly and prominently. The President’s re-election proved that the pledge is no longer relevant in the era of the new economic patriotism where we believe in a fair society – fair share, equal opportunity and fair treatment. But this test was set up for the past two years. It didn’t happen in a day. It took strategy, planning, and flawless execution.

    Well done, Mr. President.

  31. Ametia says:

    Jimi Hendrix’s 70th Birthday on November 27
    Published on Nov 27, 2012 by NTDTV

    Late rocker Jimi Hendrix would have turned 70 years old on November 27.

    Full story:

    Legendary guitarist Jimi Hendrix would have turned 70 years old on November 27.

    The American musician, who shot to fame in the late 1960s, died at the age of 27 in September of 1970.

    He is widely considered to be one of the greatest electric guitar players in the history of pop music, and one of the most important musicians of the 20th century.

    Hendrix and his band the “Jimi Hendrix Experience,” rocketed to fame in the U.S. after his 1967 performance at the Monterey Pop Festival.

    He headlined the Woodstock Festival in 1969, and the Isle of Wight Festival in 1970, before dying from drugs at the age of 27.

    He was influenced musically by American rock and roll and electric blues.

    Rolling Stone magazine ranked three of his albums among the top 100 Greatest Albums of All Time.


  32. Ametia says:

    Joseph E. Murray, Nobel laureate who pioneered the kidney transplant, dies at 93
    By Emily Langer,
    Nov 28, 2012 12:22 AM EST

    The Washington Post Published: November 27

    Joseph E. Murray, the surgeon who 58 years ago stitched a new kidney into a young man dying of renal failure, an operation that was recognized as the first successful human organ transplant, died Nov. 26 in Boston. He was 93.

    The cause was hemorrhagic stroke, said his son Richard Murray

  33. rikyrah says:

    Larry O on Grover Norquist getting dumped by the GOP.

  34. Ametia says:

    Bwa ha ha ha Stephanie Miller call McShame & Co the Three Amigos.

  35. rikyrah says:

    The What Went Wrong Chronicles, vol. 12,884

    By Kent Jones
    Tue Nov 27, 2012 6:00 PM EST.

    Like many conservatives, National Review columnist Mark Steyn has been working overtime trying to figure out What Went Wrong on November 6. While filling in on Rush Limbaugh’s radio show Monday, Mr. Steyn shared these insights, starting with GOP success in the midterms:

    “Republicans can have good years then because essentially they’re low-turnout elections — people who are engaged in politics vote. In the presidential years, people voted — a broader pool of voters comes in, and they’re basically people who swim in the broader culture. They’re not people who know the name of their congressmen or governor, and [they] aren’t terribly interested.”


    “The left tells the same stories — there are no bad people out there on the planet. ’There are just friends whose grievances we haven’t yet sufficiently accommodated. That’s what the left tells you. … It’s so easy, because it means you don’t have to think about anything. You just can sit on your porch, strum your guitar, do a little dope, or whatever they do these days. And the world goes on its way.”



    “If you just say we’re going to retreat, and we’re just going to discuss getting this or that congressman elected, then the sea that your children swim in and the sea your grandchildren swim in will be liberal, and it will be impossible to elect genuinely conservative candidates.”

    And as for the Republican Presidential candidate:

    “Mitt Romney, who is a good man, an honorable man … fought a small, shriveled campaign. … What was the point of picking Paul Ryan as your running mate and not fighting a big-picture election on where America is? At least then, if we had fought a big picture campaign, we could have at least say we had lost with honor. … The next time, we deserve a candidate who fights a big national campaign on the existential questions facing the United States.”

    So, to recap: 1) Republicans win low-turnout midterm elections because Democrats are too lazy and bored and dumb to vote for someone who isn’t, ya know, president and famous and stuff

  36. rikyrah says:

    GOP fiscal plans sharply at odds with public opinion
    By Steve Benen
    Wed Nov 28, 2012 8:42 AM EST.

    As fiscal talks continue in Washington, Republicans are already facing several disadvantages. Not only is President Obama holding a stronger hand — with looming tax hikes, he clearly has more leverage — polls show the American mainstream more likely to blame the GOP if talks fail.

    But for Republicans, it gets worse. They have fairly specific policy goals in mind, but haven’t persuaded the public at all. Consider the results of the new ABC News/Washington Post poll, which I turned into a chart

    Republicans are fighting tooth and nail to prevent higher tax rates on income above $250,000, but a clear majority of Americans support the idea. Republicans are pushing limits on tax deductions, and in this case, a plurality of Americans opposes the measure.

    And on Medicare, which GOP policymakers are eager to cut, an overwhelming majority of Americans oppose raising the eligibility age — an idea Republicans have repeatedly floated.

    In other words, in the fiscal fight, the American mainstream disagrees with congressional Republicans on everything.

    Wait, it gets worse.


    When you dig through the internals (pdf) a bit, you find the results broken down by party and ideology, and while higher tax rates on the wealthy remain unpopular on the right, the poll found self-identified Republicans and self-identified conservatives balking at the very ideas GOP policymakers are pushing in Washington.

    In other words, the Republicans’ own rank-and-file supporters oppose their own party’s proposals.

  37. rikyrah says:

    McCain descends further into incoherence
    By Steve Benen
    Wed Nov 28, 2012 8:00 AM EST.

    At this point, when it comes to the political controversy surrounding the Benghazi attack, I’m no longer know what Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) is complaining about. He’s raised questions, which have been answered. He’s raised theories, which have been debunked. He’s smeared Susan Rice, but he knows her only crime is sharing credible intelligence on a Sunday show.

    And yesterday, the Republican senator’s descent into incoherence reached new depths.

    For those who can’t watch clips online, McCain appeared on Fox News to raise a series of strange complaints, and roll out a truly bizarre new analogy.

    “[W]ho changed the talking points that was used by Ambassador Rice? And why? And on what circumstances? Why was reference to Al Qaeda left out? There are so many things that have happened. And the interesting thing is, finally, Neil, we knew within hours of all the details when we got bin Laden in the raid there, every bitty one of them. They are making a movie out of it.

    “And here we are 10 weeks later, and finally our ambassador to the United Nations who appeared on every national Sunday show has now said that she gave false information concerning how this tragedy happened as far as the spontaneity of a demonstration triggered by a hateful video.”

    We already know who changed the talking points. And we know why and under what circumstances. And we know why al Qaeda references were removed. And we know Rice didn’t deliberately deceive anyone.

    But comparing this to the raid on bin Laden’s compound is a special kind of dumb. I realize national security and foreign policy is an issue McCain struggles with, but this isn’t complicated: the bin Laden raid was our idea. It was our mission. We planned it and we executed it. We knew the details “within hours” because, unlike the terrorists’ attack on Benghazi, the raid in Abbottabad was carried out by our guys, not their guys.

  38. rikyrah says:

    Jordan Davis: Another Unarmed Young Black Male Gunned Down

    By Imani Gandy (ABL) November 28th, 2012

    Another senseless shooting death of a young unarmed black man in Florida:

    Michael Dunn, of Satellite Beach, Florida, was in Jacksonville this past weekend for his son’s wedding.

    Jordan Davis, 17, and some other teens were sitting in a SUV in a parking lot when Dunn parked next to them and asked the youths to turn down their music.

    Jordan Davis and Dunn argued over the music, then Dunn, who is a gun collector, pulled a gun and shot eight or nine times, hitting Jordan twice, reports the Orlando Sentinel.

    Jordan Davis’ father Ron Davis said his unarmed son died in the arms of a friend in the SUV.

    Dunn and his girlfriend took off, but witnesses wrote down their license plate number, according to the police.

    The couple was staying in a Jacksonville hotel when they heard a news report Saturday morning about the shooting, so they drove home to Satellite Beach, Florida.

    Dunn was arrested at his home on Saturday and charged with murder and attempted murder. He is being held without bail.

  39. rikyrah says:

    Dull, and Hypothetical

    By mistermix November 28th, 2012

    I’ve been trying to ignore Kevin Drum’s recent posts on Social Security, because I find a lot of his blog useful and informative, and as readers here know, it’s my nature to accentuate the positive and eliminate the negative, but come on, Kevin, no we don’t fucking need to have a Democratic compromise deal on Social Security. And when Dick Durbin says that we should have a bi-partisan commission, he’s not agreeing with you, he’s trying to kill any hope for a deal.

    I’m trying to think of the right metaphor for the Republican Party during their current time of crisis. One of them is a situation where dad (or mom) has been hitting the Jack pretty hard, has the kids locked in the back bedroom and is walking around waving a shotgun. Talking about Social Security is like a hostage negotiator walking into that house and starting a discussion about what color to re-paint the kitchen. It’s just a distraction, one that the insane/drunk person would love to spend hours on, but will lead to no fruitful outcome.

    Another good comparison is a kid having a tantrum on the grocery store floor. Stupid parents try to bribe the kid with candy, cookies or toys. Smart parents just ignore the little fucker until he or she calms down. Let’s be smart parents here, and realize that the real embarrassment is that a grown-ass kid would still have a tantrum, not that we aren’t rushing to placate the little shit.

    Putting Social Security, or any other popular social program, on the table for some almost certainly stupid and short-sighted “adjustments” (i.e., benefit cuts) is bad policy, dumb politics and ineffective salve for the Republican wound. What’s really going on here is that those poor bastards are going to have to give up their most cherished fantasy, which is that low tax rates lead to cutting the deficit and growing the economy. They’ve been pulling that one out of the shoebox under the bed and wanking to it since Saint Ronnie was in office, so throwing it in the dumpster is really going to hurt. Because they’re feeling tremendous psychic pain at the prospect of throwing out their cum-stained relic, they want Democrats to endure a similar sacrifice. Even if we did, and we shouldn’t, Atrios is right: Republicans would be back for more the next day. The problem is tax rates for the wealthy are too low, the solution is to raise them, and any other discussion is a distraction.

  40. rikyrah says:

    Maddow on Orange Julius and the debt ceiling redux.

  41. rikyrah says:

    Rachel Maddow explains what may really be behind the Republican Senators’ objections to Ambassador Susan Rice as a possible Secretary of State; John Kerry’s Senate seat, and the special election that would be held should he be nominated instead of Rice. NBC Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent Andrea Mitchell weigh is.

  42. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone at 3CHICS!!!

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