Serendipity SOUL | Friday Open Thread | David Bowie Week!

Happy Friday, Everyone! Hope you had a safe and sweet Halloween last night.

Today’s feature is David and Iman.


David Bowie and Iman have been married for 20 years  (Andres Otero/

“The secrets to a happy marriage are, you have to talk to each other all the  time and the other one is have fun together,” Iman told Grazia  magazine.  She added: “You have to really like the person and enjoy their  company too.”

Read more at:  The rocker has been married to second wife Iman for 20 years



IMAN & DAVID-images

Dimitrios Kambouris

Here’s a Bowie song and video that didn’t get much play:

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

60 Responses to Serendipity SOUL | Friday Open Thread | David Bowie Week!

  1. rikyrah says:

    Karmel’s Story: I No Longer Fear My ‘Pre-Existing Condition’

    I do not have a pre-existing condition. But I have a pre-existing condition in-waiting that has caused me to live in fear for years.

    A pre-existing condition. What does that mean, anyways? I am a type 1 diabetic, but that diagnosis certainly does not pre-exist me. No – pre-existing is not a medical condition; it is a legal one. Before the health insurance marketplace opened in my state, if I were to seek health insurance, my type 1 diabetes would be a pre-existing condition, and sufficient reason for most insurance companies to shut the door in my face.

    … Without insurance, the medication required to keep me alive for more than a few months easily proves untenably expensive – never mind the medication and devices required to keep me healthy and free of long-term complications.

    That is the frame of mind I have lived with for the past twenty years, and that was the frame of mind with which I approached, my state’s healthcare exchange, last month …. And suddenly I was free….

    What does the Affordable Care Act mean for me? It means that I can finally take off the scarlet letter D that has marked me as a pre-existing diabetic, and I can shop for health care knowing that I am protected by American law.

  2. rikyrah says:

    Do black fraternities and sororities still matter?
    by Theodore R. Johnson | October 25, 2013 at 12:24 PM

    In the last several months, three black men became members of the United States Senate and another has been nominated to be the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.

    Yet none of these men – Tim Scott, William ‘Mo’ Cowan, Cory Booker, and Jeh Johnson, respectively – are members of black fraternities.

    A black woman, La June Montgomery Tabron, is set to become the first black woman to head the multibillon-dollar Kellogg Foundation, and is not a member of a black sorority. Like the president, first lady, attorney general, five of the six black chief executive officers of Fortune 500 companies, and a number of other blacks at the top of their professions, they have eschewed membership in black fraternities and sororities.

    Just a few decades ago, the exact opposite was true. Almost all of the black members of post-Reconstruction era Congress elected prior to 1985 were members of Black Greek Letter Organizations, or BGLOs. The faces of the Civil Rights Movement – Martin Luther King, Jr., his wife Coretta Scott King, and the leading nonviolent social activists – all belonged to BGLOs. The black Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall was a member. Even stars on the most popular television shows, like Good Times in the ’70s and The Cosby Show in the ’80s, boasted cast members who chose to join BGLOs.

    Have these organizations stopped serving as the training grounds for our national leaders and inspirational figures? The answer appears to be, unfortunately, yes.

    What’s behind the change?

    It is not simple coincidence that prominent blacks are less likely to belong to black fraternities and sororities today than they were not long ago, even though black enrollment in colleges has increased tremendously over the decades.

    Black Greek Letter Organizations are considered to be those nine organizations founded between 1906 and 1963 that sought to provide a vehicle for black college students to associate with like-minded individuals and unite around common principles. At their founding, the five fraternities – Alpha Phi Alpha, Kappa Alpha Psi, Omega Psi Phi, Phi Beta Sigma, and Iota Phi Theta – and four sororities – Alpha Kappa Alpha, Delta Sigma Theta, Zeta Phi Beta, and Sigma Gamma Rho – required their members to dedicate themselves to academic excellence, leadership, and the improvement of black communities.

    Yet today, the public BGLO narrative is dominated by stories of brutal hazing practices and the much-celebrated (and often-appropriated), culturally-significant art of stepping.

    What changed? As a member of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Incorporated, this is a question that I’ve often contemplated. At each announcement of a black leader’s glass-ceiling-shattering political, government, or corporate executive appointment, I am immediately curious as to which organization he or she might belong to. BGLO members take enormous pride in the accomplishments of those in our organizations and often engage in a friendly competition of excellence when comparing our prominent members.

    I am not ashamed to admit that it is a tad disheartening to learn our most of our recent nationally-recognized black figures do not belong to any of these organizations.

  3. rikyrah says:

    Travel and Leisure
    Traveling while black: I was constantly mistaken for a prostitute in Buenos Aires
    by Ama Yawson | October 31, 2013 at 9:00 AM

    “Puta! cuanto?” — or “Whore, how much?” — were the words that were hurled at me almost every day during my five month study-abroad stay in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I was astounded!

    When I decided to study abroad in Argentina I knew that I would not see many black people there. I had studied enough about Latin America’s “embranquecimento,” or “whitening” campaigns, to know that even though many Latin American countries tried to dilute their African populations by recruiting European settlers and encouraging intermarriage, Argentina was deemed to be the only country that had “succeeded.”

    But what I did not know before I arrived in Buenos Aires in 2001 was that many of the few black women in Buenos Aires had been trafficked from countries such as Brazil, Colombia and the Dominican Republic for the purpose of prostitution. Contrary to popular belief in the U.S., those countries have sizeable populations of women who look like non-mixed black women. As a result, many Argentines would assume that I, too, was prostitute by virtue of my skin tone and gender.

    Moreover, due to the immutable aspects of color and gender, there was nothing that I could do to stop it. My large book bag did not challenge their assumptions. I tried to wear looser clothes. At one point, I started wearing an Islamic style hijab. But to no avail.

    The street calls continued

  4. rikyrah says:

    Virginia’s gubernatorial race is a referendum on ObamaCare, and the GOP is going to lose
    Ken Cuccinelli is trying to make this race about ObamaCare. That’s not working out so well for him.
    By Bill Scher | October 31, 2013

    Republican Ken Cuccinelli became a national conservative star as Virginia’s attorney general by leading the legal fight to declare the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional all the way to the Supreme Court. Now he’s running for governor, and he’s making health care the defining issue of his campaign.

    As the federal rollout continues to be plagued by website problems and renewed criticism over discontinued low-coverage individual plans, Cuccinelli told his supporters Monday, “We need people to know Nov 5th in Virginia is a referendum on ObamaCare.” His latest ad slams Democratic opponent Terry McAuliffe for wanting to “EXPAND OBAMACARE,” and closes by saying “to stop ObamaCare and higher taxes, there’s only one choice.” Outside conservative groups are also running ads excoriating McAuliffe as a supporter of ObamaCare.

    Virginia voters appear to agree with Cuccinelli that health care is one of the most important issues of the campaign. The Washington Post poll conducted October 24-27 asked likely voters how important eight different issues were to determining their vote. Along with job creation and education, health care tied for first, with 72 percent saying those issues were “very important.”

    And yet, in that same poll, Cuccinelli is losing by 12 points.

    In fact, Cuccinelli is losing in every single poll that’s been taken in this race save for one in early July, suggesting that his defeat is a near-certainty.

  5. rikyrah says:

    The Obamacare sabotage campaign

    By TODD S. PURDUM | 11/1/13 5:04 AM EDT Updated: 11/1/13 8:31 AM EDT

    To the undisputed reasons for Obamacare’s rocky rollout — a balky website, muddied White House messaging and sudden sticker shock for individuals forced to buy more expensive health insurance — add a less acknowledged cause: calculated sabotage by Republicans at every step.

    That may sound like a left-wing conspiracy theory — and the Obama administration itself is so busy defending the indefensible early failings of its signature program that it has barely tried to make this case. But there is a strong factual basis for such a charge.

    From the moment the bill was introduced, Republican leaders in both houses of Congress announced their intention to kill it. Republican troops pressed this cause all the way to the Supreme Court — which upheld the law, but weakened a key part of it by giving states the option to reject an expansion of Medicaid. The GOP faithful then kept up their crusade past the president’s reelection, in a pattern of “massive resistance” not seen since the Southern states’ defiance of the Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision in 1954.

    The opposition was strategic from the start: Derail President Barack Obama’s biggest ambition, and derail Obama himself. Party leaders enforced discipline, withholding any support for the new law — which passed with only Democratic votes, thus undermining its acceptance. Partisan divisions also meant that Democrats could not pass legislation smoothing out some rough language in the draft bill that passed the Senate. That left the administration forced to fill far more gaps through regulation than it otherwise would have had to do, because attempts — usually routine — to re-open the bill for small changes could have led to wholesale debate in the Senate all over again.

    But the bitter fight over passage was only the beginning of the war to stop Obamacare. Most Republican governors declined to create their own state insurance exchanges — an option inserted in the bill in the Senate to appeal to the classic conservative preference for local control — forcing the federal government to take at least partial responsibility for creating marketplaces serving 36 states — far more than ever intended.

    Then congressional Republicans refused repeatedly to appropriate dedicated funds to do all that extra work, leaving the Health and Human Services Department and other agencies to cobble together by redirecting funds from existing programs. On top of that, nearly half of the states declined to expand their Medicaid programs using federal funds, as the law envisioned.

    Read more:

  6. rikyrah says:

    A Hateful Cult

    by BooMan
    Fri Nov 1st, 2013 at 10:13:40 AM EST

    I don’t think that there is any prospect of conservatives declaring peace on the safety net. The conservative movement has become a cult that is unmoored from Christian teachings about helping the needy. Their need to punish anyone who has fallen on hard times is almost limitless. I don’t even think it is connected anymore to a desire to use church charity as a substitute for government assistance. That used to be the idea, but a different value system has been internalized. Now, the overriding ethos animating conservatives is the “takers vs. makers” meme, which argues that people who need help are fundamentally unworthy and should be considered political adversaries.
    It used to be that a lot of conservatives thought they could improve their position vis-a-vis God by devoting some of their time to helping the poor, the mentally ill, the drug-addicted, and the homeless. I think that idea has been replaced by the idea that they can kick those people in the teeth until they die, and then they can light them on fire.

    I don’t expect Catholics to support the new conservative movement to the same degree that they have in the past, and I think the evangelicals will start moving away soon, too. We’re already seeing the division on immigration reform.

    I mean, it shouldn’t be necessary for the president of the American Enterprise Institute to tell conservatives that “this war against the social safety net…is just insane.” The fact that he feels the need to say something like that tells you all you need to know.

    The conservative movement has crossed some invisible line and they are now one of the most malevolent and dangerous and anti-American movements that we’ve seen arise in this country.

  7. rikyrah says:

    aegan Goddard ‏@politicalwire36m
    Bill de Blasio when asked if he would give Joe Lhota a job in his administration: “No. Next question.”… …

  8. rikyrah says:

    This is so wrong…


    Sexy Gospel Body & Soul

  9. rikyrah says:

    Sean Hannity says that 12 Years A slave “exaggerates the bad parts of slavery”. There were good parts? That man is evil.

  10. rikyrah says:

    ‘The President’s Devotional’ excerpt: Marriage ‘ran deep’ for President Obama
    by Josh DuBois | November 1, 2013 at 6:53 AM

    The following is an excerpt from The President’s Devotional, written by Josh DuBois, who served as director of faith outreach for the Obama White House from 2008 through 2012.

    It started on the campaign trail in 2008. We were in the back of a black SUV, heading to the Saddleback Civil Forum in Orange County, California. After quizzing me on the Ten Commandments (and poking fun at my friend and his body man, Reggie Love, for not knowing all of Moses’s instructions by heart), then-Senator Obama looked at me with a wry smile and said: “You know, you really should get married.”

    “I’m working on in, Senator, I really am. Things are going pretty well with my girlfriend . . .”

    “Well, you should get married. Time for you to settle down.”

    It was the first of several inquisitions. There was the time we gathered in the Oval Office with a dozen faith leaders to launch the Faith-Based Advisory Council, when President Obama interrupted the proceedings to ask, “You engaged yet?”

    There was Father’s Day 2010, when we visited a local nonprofit, and backstage before his remarks, the president introduced me to a group of fathers and kids by saying, “And this is Joshua, my faith-based director. He’s a great guy, but he’s not a dad yet himself—he’ll get there, if we could only get him married.”

    And there was the afternoon before a picnic on the White House lawn. We had invited teenage boys from local high schools to the White House, along with some famous adult mentors. I was sitting in a foyer called the Diplomatic Reception Room when President Obama walked in. Before I could begin briefing him on the event, he interrupted me. “Really, what’s the holdup? Why haven’t you popped the question?”

    Surprised but grateful for the opportunity to have a longer conversation on the subject, I started in with a range of excuses. “Sir, I’m saving more money for a ring, and a wedding. . . . I’m waiting for the job to slow down a bit so that we have more time to spend together. . . . I’m—”

    And the president interrupted me again. “Listen, Joshua. Do you love her? Do you think she’ll be a great wife?”

    “Well, yes. Yes sir, I do.”

    “Then you can’t let that other stuff stop you. Marriage is the best decision you can make; it sounds trite, but it really does complete a person, rounds you out. If you’ve made up your mind that you want her to be your wife and the mother of your children, then that’s all you need to know. You really should think about popping the question—you need to get married.”

    Marriage ran deep for President Obama. In fact, I came to know it as the mooring force for his life. Growing up with his grandparents and seeing their relationship firsthand, the future president embraced their marriage as an island of stability in an often-tumultuous childhood.

    • rikyrah says:

      a comment from Town:


      And that’s why they attack and diminish Michelle Obama so badly.

      Think about the Kanye attack on Michelle Obama, which was really a sad attack on Barack Obama: by Kanye saying “I got the hottest chick in the game, your wife is basically nothing,” Kanye was really telling Obama “YOU are nothing.”

      And that’s why people reacted the way they did to Kanye. If Barack Obama’s worth is due to Michelle’s worth, then Kanye is worthless b/c his girl is worthless. I don’t hate or even dislike Kim Kardashian; she is probably a very sweet girl. I actually feel sorry for her.

      HOWEVER, she doesn’t add anything except for being arm candy. She is only there for her looks*. She doesn’t add anything intellectually. She can’t be a good wife b/c she’s not her own person. She’s her mother’s plaything and she’s Kanye’s plaything. How can Kim “influence” anything when everyone’s telling her what to do, what to wear, how to be and how to live?

      *If this comes off racist, I’m sorry. But unless a white woman takes very good care of herself, her looks are over by 40 years old (35, really). You cannot hang out in the sun every day of your teens/20s, stay up all night smoking & drinking every night of your teens/20s and wear makeup/take it off/wear makeup/take it off every day since the age of 12 and expect that wear & tear not to show up by your 30s & 40s. Kim & Kourtney might get some extra time because they are darker than their sisters but even Kourtney is looking really old these days and she’s only 34. Kendall & Kylie (especially Kylie) are going to look 40 years old by the time they are late 20s. Kim has another 5 to 7 years of “looking good” but she’s beginning to look run down now and being with Kanye is only going to make it worse.

      • rikyrah says:


        Water seeks its own level, which is true of Kanye and Kim, and of the President and First Lady. Kanye is a hater who was upset that the First Lady effortlessly has Vogue covers and is genuinely fascinating to people and admired while he cannot manage the same for his fiance. He showed himself by selecting the First Lady as the example of someone who supposedly is less deserving of the cover than his fiance. He’s a coon. I’ve lost all respect for him. Not even in the same universe as the Obamas.

      • rikyrah says:


        Seriously, listen to how both men talk about their women:

        Obama: Michelle inspires me, Michelle is smart, she’s my rock, she keeps me grounded, she’s a wonderful woman, she’s a great mom, I’m lucky to be with her etc.

        Kanye: My girl is hot, my girl’s a star, she should be on Vogue, she should have a Hollywood star, Michelle Obama can’t instagram a booty pic like my girl did, etc. Everything is superficial. Everything is about fashion & looks. When has Kanye said that Kim was a good person, a good mom, kind, smart, builds him up as a man? It’s all about superficial stuff.

        Kim & Kanye are superficial people. After all the money & looks are gone what do they have? Nothing, which is why nobody takes them seriously.

    • Ametia says:

      I heard Josh Dubois speak at the Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul 2008. He’s spot on. The ties that bind the OBAMA’s CANNOT.WILL NOT.BE.BROKEN.

  11. Yahtc says:



    Apparently, UCLA Chancellor Gene Block has had enough of incompetent people ignoring racial intolerance and making decisions that are eroding UCLA’s reputation. This week he finally put his foot down, starting at the UCLA Medical Center.

    The chancellor, who has the final say on all faculty hires, rescinded an offer to former UCLA medical resident, Dr. Douglas Sidell. You may recall in our previous reporting that Sidell was one of the perpetrators who contributed to the shameful humiliation and racial mistreatment of African-American surgeon, Dr. Christian Head, and to the retaliation of Dr. Joel Sercarz, the only doctor who stepped forward to substantiate Dr. Head’s claims of racial discrimination and retaliation at UCLA. Chancellor Block put the kibosh on the racial bullies’ efforts to bring Sidell back to UCLA from his University of Cincinnati College of Medicine gig.

    The really pitiful part of this whole mess is that the dean of the UCLA Medical School is a Black man named Dr. A. Eugene Washington and he had approved Sidell’s return! Dr. Washington should hang his head in shame and resign for letting Sidell’s contract reach the chancellor’s desk.

    Also, the state NAACP adopted a resolution this week calling upon the California attorney general to examine racial relations at all the state-funded California universities in the wake of the independent review team’s report issued this month that stated, in a nutshell, that racism is rife and rising at UCLA.

  12. Ametia says:

    The comment section is VILE.

  13. Yahtc says:

    Holding Music History In Your Hands: Why Archives Matter

    November 1, 2013

  14. Yahtc says:

    MXIBS Talk Explores Art & Inclusion

    October 31, 2013

  15. Yahtc says:

    The Curmudgeon: Black Bohemian Music from Sly to Prince to Janelle Monáe

  16. Yahtc says:

    CBS2 Investigation: College Security Guard Leaves Trail Of Racism And Hate

  17. Yahtc says:

    The Black Photographer: Race and Photography (a Conversation With Brent Lewis)

    Posted: 10/31/2013

  18. Yahtc says:

    Submariner James Mosley To Be Inducted Into Connecticut Veterans Hall Of Fame
    Waterford resident James Mosley is one of 10 Connecticut Veterans who will be inducted in a special ceremony at the Legislative Office Building on November 1.

  19. Yahtc says:

    Traveling while black: I was constantly mistaken for a prostitute in Buenos Aires

  20. Yahtc says:

    Diving into Integration: Sammy Lee, Historical Memory, and the Complexity of Housing Segregation in Cold War California

  21. Yahtc says:

    “McCarthy clashes with alderman over promoting blacks to police brass”
    Chicago Sun Times
    Oct 31, 2013

  22. Yahtc says:

    “Renowned MLK scholar to deliver 2013 Harrod Lecture”
    Oct. 31, 2013

  23. Yahtc says:

    “Names of 54 African-American Soldiers Added to Civil War Monument”

    COLUMBIA, Tenn. (AP/WMOT) — The names of 54 African-American soldiers who fought and died in the Civil War had their names added to a war memorial at the Maury County Courthouse in Columbia over the weekend.

    The soldiers were members of the United States Colored Troops regiments that fought for the Union during the conflict.

    Jo Ann Williams McClellan, President of the African American Heritage Society of Maury County, says that as far as she knows Maury is the first county in the state to add the names of African-American soldiers to its Civil War memorial.

    “And I just hope that there are other counties in Tennessee that will do the same thing, because these men were the first to fight for our civil rights. And I think it was a wonderful way to, 150 years later, to thank them for what they did for us.”

    McClellan says several ancestors of the men honored were present during the ceremony, and some applauded as their relatives’ names were read aloud.

  24. Yahtc says:

    “Novelist Attica Locke wins biggest U.S. award for African-American writers”

    Novelist Attica Locke has won the Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence, adding the nation’s biggest literary prize for African-American writers to her expansive resume.

    Administered by the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, which announced Locke’s award on Tuesday (Oct. 29), the annual award comes with a $10,000 prize. It is named after one of Louisiana’s most prominent authors.

    Locke got the nod for her second novel, “The Cutting Season,” which was published by Dennis Lehane Books.

    “The Cutting Season” tells the story of a fictional 2009 murder on a Louisiana sugar plantation – a crime that exposes secrets dating to the Civil War. In unraveling the mystery, Locke examines larger issues of race and class.

    Locke, a native of Houston, is the seventh writer to win the Gaines award. Previous honorees include Dinaw Mengestu, Victor Lavalle, Stephanie Powell Watts, Jeffery Renard Allen, Ravi Howard and Bogalusa native Olympia Vernon.

    Locke lives in Los Angeles. Her first novel, “Black Water Rising,” was shortlisted for the 2010 Orange Prize, nominated for a 2010 Edgar award, nominated for a 2010 NAACP Image Award and a finalist for a 2009 Los Angeles Times Book Prize.

    The Gaines Award will be presented to Locke on Jan. 23 at the Manship Theatre in Baton Rouge.

  25. Yahtc says:

    “Va. Democrats focusing on drawing African Americans and young voters to the polls”

    In the final days of his race for Virginia governor against Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II (R), Terry McAuliffe and fellow Democrats are striving to draw to the polls two constituencies that often stay home for off-year contests — African Americans and young voters.

    Virginia Democrats are trying to blend the latest in technology, social science and on-the-ground experience to lure those voters. They have found one of the best ways to ensure people show up is to get them to sign a card promising to vote, perhaps even at a specific time and place.

  26. rikyrah says:

    ‘I’m showing my son mercy’
    10/31/13 07:00 AM
    By Irin Carmon

    On their last night in Dallas, the ramen noodles and microwave popcorn were finished. The money for the motel had run out too. So on a hot August night Jessica and Erick Davis and their three young kids slept in the Mazda rented for the trip.

    It had only been a few hours since Jessica’s abortion. Because the procedure needed to be performed later in her pregnancy, it stretched over three days.

    “I cried until I could fall asleep,” she said.

    Earlier that month, at home in Oklahoma City, the Davises were told that the boy she was carrying had a severe brain malformation known as holoprosencephaly. It is rare, though possible, for such a fetus to survive to birth, but doctors told them that he would not reach his first birthday. “He would never walk, lift his head,” Jessica, 23, recalled in an interview.

    “I could let my son go on and suffer,” she said. Or she could accept a word she didn’t like – abortion – “and do the best thing for my baby.”

    “It took everything we had so that our son would not suffer” Jessica Davis

    The Davises’ ordeal was always going to be painful. But the grim path that led them to a night in the car was determined, nearly every step of the way, by a state that has scrambled to be the most “pro-life” in the nation. There are no exceptions for families like the Davises.

    Oklahomans brag that theirs has become the reddest state. Republicans hold super majorities in both chambers and every single seat in the U.S. Congress. Republican Mary Fallin is governor. Every single Oklahoma county rejected Barack Obama–twice. The changed political landscape allowed Oklahoma to become a staging ground for the anti-choice movement’s strategy to undermine Roe v. Wade, one seemingly narrow restriction at a time.

    “We are the guinea pigs,” said Ryan Kiesel, a former state lawmaker who is executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Oklahoma.

  27. rikyrah says:

    October 31, 2013 4:40 PM
    Red State Dawn
    By Ed Kilgore

    If you really want to understand a political party’s actual agenda, it’s useful to take a look at jurisdictions where its lawmakers can basically do whatever they want. That’s what Irin Carmon does in a heart-wrenching essay at MSNBC by looking at the antichoice playground of Oklahoma, where conservative Republicans walk very tall.

    She looks at the Sooner State and its abortion politics through the experience of an economically struggling couple (which already had three kids), Eric and Jessica Davis, who discovered their unborn child had a lethal abnormality. Thanks to the Oklahoma legislature’s enactment of a post-20-weeks abortion ban with no exceptions for such circumstances, they had to travel out of state to terminate a pregnancy the mother desperately wished she could have in conscience carried to term. And even then, thanks to Republican legislation in adjoining states, it was difficult, and may soon be impossible, for a couple like this one to find anywhere to obtain an abortion that could in no way be attributed to parental convenience or even to doubts about the “personhood” of the fetus.

    Carmon’s main point is that in places like Oklahoma, the dominant GOP policymakers are entirely indifferent to any sort of nuance, and are following a strict party line aimed eventually at the prohibition of all abortions. The only limitation being placed on extremist abortion legislation is by a state judiciary in which past Democratic appointments have left a fading stamp. And in that respect, the state is a bit of a microcosm of the country, where Oklahoma’s laws are among those provoking an eventual Supreme Court review that could lead to a repudiation of the right to choose nationally.

    So this story might not be so unusual soon:

  28. rikyrah says:

    The Morning Plum: Americans not ready to give up on Obamacare
    By Greg Sargent
    November 1 at 9:14 am

    With Democrats continuing to grow more skittish about Obamacare’s awful rollout problems, the Kaiser Family Foundation is out with some important new polling that deserves a careful look from Dem Congressional officials — and political commentators.

    The most important finding in the Kaiser poll — which is in some ways the gold standard of health care polling — is that significantly more Americans want the Affordable Care Act kept or expanded than want it repealed and replaced with a GOP alternative or with nothing at all. Here’s the key finding:

    What would you like to see Congress do when it comes to the health care law?

  29. rikyrah says:

    The Morning Plum: The deficit is falling. In Washington, that doesn’t matter.
    By Greg Sargent
    October 31 at 9:21 am

    This week, as mandated by the recent deal to reopen the government, lawmakers are entering into budget talks to replace the sequester, whose spending cuts continue to lay like a wet blanket over the recovery. This week, the deficit fell to its lowest point in five years.

    You’d think those two things would be related. Not in Washington. More specifically, not for Washington Republicans.

    This morning, the signs continue that Republicans will not give any ground to Democrats who are requesting new revenues as part of a deal to replace the sequestration cuts at higher spending levels. But beyond this, it’s already clear that Republicans — again — are defining the terms of these talks so that the only “compromise” they will agree to is one in which only Dems are making concessions.

    Here’s how one House GOP leadership aide puts it: “I’d say the two highest priorities are using oversight to continue to make the case against Obamacare, and using the budget conference to lock in the spending cuts we’ve achieved — without the tax hikes.”

    And here’s how Paul Ryan’s opening statement to the budget conference committee put it: “If this conference becomes an argument about taxes, we’re not going to get anywhere. The way to raise revenue is to grow the economy.”

    Here’s what you are going to hear in the days ahead from Republicans: We don’t need to make concessions to replace the sequester at higher spending levels, because it’s Democrats, not Republicans, who want to get rid of the sequester. But the key context here is that Republicans are on record as decrying the sequester cuts, too, particularly since they will fall more heavily on defense next year.

  30. rikyrah says:

    Dear Dems: Like it or not, your fates are tied to Obamacare
    By Ryan Cooper
    October 31 at 11:45 am

    Democrats have been taking a beating in the press over the bungled rollout. The president and his senior staff were clearly not aware of the problems bedeviling the website beforehand, and Republicans, sensing blood, have been baying for…something. (What exactly is not clear, unless you count total capitulation and repeal.) This is leading to a sense of rising panic in the party — today, the White House is sending some top aides to Capitol Hill to try to calm anxious Senate Democrats.

    The Democrats should hang tough. Though it may be necessary to patch the law at some point, they shouldn’t stampede themselves into passing a fig leaf bill that would harm the proper functioning of the law. Like it or not, Obamacare is the hill the party has chosen to fight or die on. No fig leaf will save them, should the administration be unable to make the law work.

  31. rikyrah says:

    LUVVIE’S Scandal Recap is up!

    More Cattle, Less Bull: Scandal Episode 305 Recap

    [ 7 ] November 1, 2013 | Luvvie

    This episode of Scandal was slower than usual because halfway through it, I wasn’t sweating. That is odd. My heart has usually jumped twice in my chest 30 minutes into an episode. BUT it was the calm before the storm. Shonda was preparing to slay us all and shake ALL the tables. The theme of this episode was desperation. Everyone was desperate at one point and all of it came to a head in the last scene, which I’m still reeling from. Let’s get into it!

  32. rikyrah says:

    My Cousin AdeKerry OluWashington is Pregnant and I’m Excited!

    [ 39 ] October 30, 2013 | Luvvie

    I called it months ago. My cousin by marriage to a stranger who just happens to be Nigerian like I am, Kerry Washington, is pregnant with her first child. I am so excited and our family have so much to be thankful for this year. There will be extra jollof rice to celebrate this one. IF YOU ARE SHADING OUR BLOOD RELATION, I REBUKE YOU! Jesus had haters too. (-__-) Your hateration is not welcome in this dancerie.

    Anyway, LOOK AT GAWD!

    I knew it, o! It was because my fellow petitenista, AdeKerry, has been looking fuller in the face lately. Also, her BEWBS were SITTING like they were at obedience school. OWWW!!!. She was at the Emmy Awards looking all glowy, and stuff. And she’s been rocking super loose dresses or those with busy mid-sections when she was previously into structured pieces. I KNEW she got the pregnet.

    So it was confirmed by US Weekly today.

  33. rikyrah says:

    The Last Word With Lawrence O’Donnell (10/31/13)


    Reporters debunk some of the claims made about the Affordable Care Act. Lawrence talks to Michael Hillzik and Wendell Potter.


  34. rikyrah says:

    If We Can’t Have It, You Can’t Have It Either
    David Kurtz – October 31, 2013, 10:58 AM

    There’s a lot of backstory to today’s showdown in the Senate over President Obama’s nominees to DC Circuit Court of Appeals. Sahil Kapur reports on much of it here. There’s no question that the showdown implicates the filibuster, or the abuse thereof by minority Republicans. We have more on the historical trendlines on the filibuster of judicial nominees here.

    But there’s more to this particular face-off than the usual opposition to judicial nominees or the fight over whether the use of the filibuster has crippled the Senate. In this case, the underlying battle is just as if not more important than the supposedly larger issues it implicates.

    What’s happening in this case is Senate Republicans are blocking wholesale the confirmation of any new judges to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. The reason is simple: The D.C. Circuit tilts conservative right now and so long as the empty seats on the bench remain empty, that conservative tilt remains.

    Republicans — and the anti-regulation crowd they represent — are particularly concerned about the D.C. Circuit because it has jurisdiction over many of the rules and regulations that the federal government writes. That makes it the front line in the battle between regulators and the regulated, between consumers and business, and between the liberal and conservative legal establishments over the scope and power of the administrative agencies who implement the laws Congress passes.

    Republicans have now transcended the usual political debate over who should occupy the seats on this court and moved into the realm of blocking anyone nominated by a Democratic president, regardless of their merit or qualifications, from sitting on the court. It’s a scorched earth policy. If we can’t have it, you can’t have it either.

    Republicans now prefer to break the court than let Obama exercise his constitutional prerogatives. To try to obscure this fact, Republicans have invented basically from whole cloth an argument that there are too many judges on the D.C. Circuit, that there’s not enough legal work for them. No matter that the law provides for the current number of seats on that bench. Senate Republicans don’t have the votes to change the law. And that’s not even getting into the chronic underfunding and understaffing of the federal judiciary writ large.

    One of the many ironies of this showdown is that Republicans have begun accusing President Obama of trying to “pack the court,” which is a phrase with powerful historical connotations that have zero bearing here. It’s like arguing that the Voting Rights Act is a tool for discriminating against white people. Argue the precise opposite of the truth and you confuse the casual observer.–100457

  35. rikyrah says:


    I am amused how DC conventional wisdom swung wildly from “GOP lose House over shutdown” to “Dems lose Senate over Obamacare” in just 2 weeks

    6:16 AM – 1 Nov 2013

  36. rikyrah says:

    Grudge Spectacle



    All their gripes are too easily dismissed as sour grapes. You shut down the government to try to kill Obamacare, then open hearings to try to fix it? C’mon.

    And it points to a bigger Republican problem: the party is too consumed with ax grinding and not concerned enough with idea generation.

    When is the last time you heard a truly big idea coming from the right that could become law and could move this country forward? Don’t worry, I’ll wait. Exactly. Silence.

    They are less interested in making laws that get things done than in making laws that prevent people from doing things. They want to halt progress and rewind it a few decades. For them, what used to be is always better than what can be, and that is a fatal logic flaw in a dynamic society.

  37. Ametia says:

    Happy FRY-day, Everyone! :-)

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