Serendipity SOUL | Tuesday Open Thread | Tuck & Patti Week

More Tuck & Patti..

Tuck & Patti. You are either a fan…or you haven’t heard them yet.
Written by Carol Wright

For nearly three decades, this unique vocal/guitar jazz duo has cast its passionate musical spell worldwide, capturing the hearts of lovers, the respect of jazz buffs, and the jaw-dropping awe of guitarists.

With 29 years of performing together, and 26 years of marriage, the devotion forged by this extraordinary couple shows no sign of dimming from the pressure of familiarity. For them, this pressure creates more diamond than dust. Their instinct for refining their music, their technique and their career—their home studio makeover—their house and garden renovation—never wavers from their credo: It’s not done if it’s not from the heart. And what comes from the heart demands excellence.

Onstage and off, guitarist Tuck Andress and vocalist/arranger Patti Cathcart might, at first impression, strike you as an odd couple. The obvious difference in skin color is quickly overshadowed by the contrast of their personalities. Patti exudes the soft, centered yet powerful graciousness of a gospel singer; Tuck almost wears his brain on his skin, anticipating the thousands of musical decisions he’ll have to send to his ten fingers during the course of a performance. Seeing the virtuosity and complexity of Tuck’s guitar work, most are surprised to learn that Patti is the actual writer, arranger, and producer. Without even blinking, Tuck-the-problem-solver brags, “Patti writes and arranges; I am just the orchestra.”

More here…


Time After Time


I’ve Got Just about Everything

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91 Responses to Serendipity SOUL | Tuesday Open Thread | Tuck & Patti Week

  1. rikyrah says:

    Plouffe Sees Hillary Clinton Crowding Out Other Democrats
    By Lisa Lerer Apr 25, 2014 11:01 PM CT

    No Democrat will likely be able to mount a serious challenge to Hillary Clinton in the next presidential campaign if she decides to run, David Plouffe, President Barack Obama’s former top political adviser, said

    Plouffe, who was a strategist for both of Obama’s presidential campaigns and served as a senior adviser in the White House, said “there’s very little oxygen” for another Democrat to challenge the former secretary of state in the 2016 presidential primaries.

    “If someone runs, it’s really to just try and set themselves up for the future,” Plouffe said in an interview on Bloomberg Television’s “Political Capital with Al Hunt,” airing this weekend. “Build their name, get a show on MSNBC.”

    • Ametia says:

      Buying off the death of other people’s children/family. Being white certainly does have it’s privlleges, having money and being white buys off a life time prison sentence for killing folks.

    • Liza says:

      They got off cheap. Apparently, the $2M is for a boy who is paralyzed. The article says, “His parents say he can only smile and blink,” which means that the kid is a quadriplegic. The 2M is not nearly enough.

  2. rikyrah says:

    47 percenter-ism is back!
    By Greg Sargent
    May 6 at 2:08 pm

    Control of the Senate, the prognosticators tell us, could come down to North Carolina. If GOP establishment favorite Thom Tillis clears 40 percent today and avoids a runoff – as seems likely — we’ll be hearing a great deal about how Republicans vanquished destructive elements within the party and emerged with the strongest and most “moderate” opponent against vulnerable Dem Senator Kay Hagan.

    So it’s worth pointing out that Tillis comes with vulnerabilities of his own. For one thing, whatever his relative moderation when compared with his primary opponents, he appears to be a diehard 47 percenter.

    On Hardball last night, Chris Matthews featured video of Tillis — previously captured by a local North Carolina group — in which Tillis’ 47 percenter-ism was on full display.

    In it, Tillis said we have to “divide and conquer” those on public assistance, by getting those who really need it — the sick — to turn on and look down at those who “choose to get into a condition that makes them dependent on the government.” Speaking of that latter category, Tillis added: “At some point, you’re on your own. We may end up taking care of those babies, but we’re not going to take care of you.” Watch:

  3. rikyrah says:

    David Corn ✔ @DavidCornDC
    Here are the wildest anti-Obama quotes from the billionaire hosting Hillary Clinton’s first political event of 2014

    1:10 PM – 6 May 2014

  4. rikyrah says:

    May 4, 2014
    Who are the optimists these days?

    Frank Bruni is pessimistic about America.

    More and more I get the sense that we’ve lost it, and by “it” I mean the optimism that was always the lifeblood of this luminous experiment, the ambition that has been its foundation, the swagger that made us so envied and emulated and reviled.

    We’re walking small. And that shift in our gait and our gumption has been palpable for many years, during an unusually sustained period of frustration that has the feel of something more than a temporary dive: a turned corner, the downward arc of a diminished enterprise.

    To bolster his case, Bruni quotes his friends – most of whom are other NYT writers and columnists. Given the current demise of print media, that shouldn’t be too surprising. But I suspect he’s also speaking for a lot of – here comes the kicker – white Americans.

    The very basis of white privilege is that it means not having to listen to the thoughts/opinions/experiences of people of color. If Bruni were to listen, he’d hear a different story. For example, three years ago, Ellis Cose wrote about The New Optimists.

    African-Americans, long accustomed to frustration in their pursuit of opportunity and respect, are amazingly upbeat, consistently astounding pollsters with their hopefulness. Earlier this year, when a Washington Post–Kaiser–-Harvard poll asked respondents whether they expected their children’s standard of living to be better or worse than their own, 60 percent of blacks chose “better,” compared with only 36 percent of whites.


    And apparently its not just African Americans who are optimistic.

    The AP-NORC analysis of data from the General Social Survey, a long-running biannual survey conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago, found just 46 percent of whites say their family has a good chance of improving their living standard given the way things are in America, the lowest level in surveys conducted since 1987. In contrast, 71 percent of blacks and 73 percent of Hispanics express optimism of an improved life – the biggest gap with whites since the survey began asking.

  5. rikyrah says:

    Self-loathing Senate Republicans
    by BooMan
    Tue May 6th, 2014 at 02:28:43 PM EST

    Someone once something like, “When they look in the mirror, every senator sees a president.” But it doesn’t sound like many of the Senate Republicans believe it. To hear them tell it, everyone hates the Senate and, anyway, senators have no executive experience and aren’t even qualified to run the country. Plus, they’re way too long-winded and inept at retail politics.

    Of course, the real problem is that senators like Chuck Grassley and Orrin Hatch take one look at Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, or Marco Rubio and they know they will be obliterated in a national election. Lack of overall experience is one problem. Lack of gravitas is another. Radicalism is a third. Regional deficits are a fourth. Inability to unite the party is a fifth. Being gaffe-prone is a sixth. You have to get pretty far down the list before you get to any particular problem with being a senator. After all, their voting records are just a subset of their radicalism. It’s the policies that they’d propose that are the main problem.

    People talk a lot about the Tea Party vs. the Establishment, but the GOP has an Electoral College problem. If your problem is that you’re getting killed in Northern Virginia and the Philly suburbs, nominating a social conservative is a bad idea, and I don’t care if you’re talking about an ex-governor from Arkansas, a current governor from Louisiana, or senators from Texas, Kentucky, or Florida. When the Democrats had an Electoral College problem they overcame it with Democratic governors from Georgia and Arkansas, not Oregon and Vermont. And both Carter and Clinton kept their distance from the fringes of their own party, rather than trying to be the most liberal members in the country.

    The problem is primarily that conservatism doesn’t sell as a national ideology. It’s not enough to nominate someone from Wisconsin if that candidate is an extreme conservative. I can almost guarantee you that Sen. Susan Collins of Maine would win more states than Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin.

  6. rikyrah says:

    What Kerry Washington Can Teach Beyoncé and Kim Kardashian

    The Scandal star’s less-is-more approach to social media is refreshing.
    By: Keli Goff

    Posted: May 5 2014 2:22 PM

    Kerry Washington did something shocking a couple of weeks ago: She reached one of life’s major milestones—giving birth to her beautiful baby girl—but she didn’t publicize it.

    She didn’t tweet, Instagram or Facebook it. She didn’t leak it to People magazine. And somehow, in our social media-saturated age, the Scandal star decided that she didn’t need to broadcast this information to millions of nosy people who don’t know her.

    It shows she’s one of the classiest and most refreshing celebrities walking the planet today. Not only is she a terrific role model for little girls growing up in Generation Selfie—who are bombarded endlessly with the message that tweeting topless photos of themselves is preferable to not being mentioned on Twitter at all—but she’s also a great role model for other celebrities, some of whom I’m hoping will take cues from her.

    Though I’m not holding my breath.

    There was a time when celebrities left something to the imagination. To be clear, there was a time when celebrities had little choice in doing so. Studios not only helped stars hide major secrets but often required them to do so. Hollywood legend Rita Hayworth’s Latina identity was obscured in the studio’s quest to turn her into the all-American pinup. The child born out of wedlock to actress Loretta Young and matinee idol Clark Gable was hidden for decades, for fear that disclosure would demolish Young’s girl-next-door image. And countless A-list stars from Hollywood’s golden age had their names changed.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Upstate New York Comptroller’s Tweet to Melissa Harris-Perry Called Racist

    Dutchess County comptroller Jim Coughlan sent a tweet telling Harris-Perry to “keep your stinking paws off my kid, you d–ned dirty ape.”
    By: Breanna Edwards

    Posted: May 6 2014 10:17 AM

    The comptroller for Dutchess County, N.Y,, a northern suburb of New York City, is facing the wrath of politicians and citizens alike after tweeting a message in which he referred to MSNBC news anchor Melissa Harris-Perry as a “damned dirty ape,” the New York Daily News reports.

    Jim Coughlan, a Republican who is also eyeing a state Senate seat, made the comment in response to an ad Harris-Perry made in which she made reference to the need for communities, not just parents, to take resposibility for the well-being of children.

    “We have never invested as much in public education as we should have because we’ve always had kind of a private notion of children: ‘Your kid is yours, and totally your responsibility,'” Harris-Perry says in the ad that remains controversial among conservatives.

    “We have to break through our kind of private idea that kids belong to their parents, or kids belong to their families, and recognize that kids belong to whole communities,” she adds

  8. rikyrah says:

    Danny Vinik: Republicans Still Don’t Have A Jobs Plan, But Americans Think They Do

    A Pew Research-USA Today survey released on Monday finds that Americans’ number one priority remains jobs. And yet, while Democrats have fought for increased government spending to boost the recovery, Americans are planning to reward Republicans in November—even though they have still not offered a credible jobs plan. And while the recovery certainly could be much stronger, its weakness is the result of Republican obstruction, not the Democratic agenda.

    In the debate over whether to apply fiscal or monetary stimulus, the GOP chooses neither. Facing a massive hole in aggregate demand, Republicans have offered the same supply-side agenda as always: tax cuts, spending cuts, and deregulation. These are not macroeconomic policies for filling a short-term hole in demand and spurring a recovery. Only after the economy returns to sustainable, full employment—something we haven’t achieved in nearly 20 years—should we look at supply-side policies to boost growth.

  9. rikyrah says:

    Isaac Chotiner: Ron Fournier Attacks Paul Krugman, Embarrasses Self

    I know it’s cruel to pick on people who are ill, but in Ron Fournier’s case an exception must be made. Fournier is currently ailing from a condition known as bipartisanship (medical name: vacuousness), which manifests itself when another person expresses a thought that can be deemed partisan. For example, on Monday Paul Krugman wrote a column castigating Republicans for releasing a biased report on whether people were paying their Obamacare premiums. (TPM: “Nearly 40 percent of Obamacare enrollees signed up after March 15—which means their first premium wasn’t due until after the committee finished collecting its data.”) Krugman scolded the GOP and expressed outrage that the Party was so dishonest.

    The effect of this was to trigger one of Fournier’s symptoms: writing silly responses to people like Krugman. Fournier begins by agreeing with Krugman’s contention that the GOP is dishonest. Fournier provides no evidence that the White House could get accurate figures, and in any case it’s failure to do so is not an example of “skewing the truth.” Moreover, there will presumably be accurate figures after the end of May, which is when people who enrolled will have to pay up


    BokoHaram-Nigeria’s notorious Islamic extremist group Boko Haram kidnapped eight more girls from a village in northeastern Nigeria

    Nigeria Extremists Kidnap 8 More Girls

    Suspected members of Nigeria’s notorious Islamic extremist group Boko Haram kidnapped eight more girls from a village in northeastern Nigeria on Tuesday, Sky News reported, citing police and residents.

    The BBC also reported the abductions, but had few details.

    Sky News said the girls, ages 12 to 15, were abducted in Warabe, near one of the Islamist militant group’s strongholds.

    “They were many, and all of them carried guns. They came in two vehicles painted in army color,” local resident Lazarus Musa told Sky News. “They started shooting in our village.”

    A police source who declined to identify himself to the news agency said the girls were taken away on trucks, along with stolen livestock and food.

  11. rikyrah says:

    FABULOUS Comment about the Clintons from POU:


    Folks on twitter are all mad at Monica Lewinsky’s Vanity Fair interview that comes out this week. Oh, well. This is just the beginning and the tip of the ice berg. The Clintons’ drama and dysfunction will be laid out in full. And the only reason no on put out Bill Clinton’s recent affair in 2008 is because she lost. But there are many women AFTER Monica Lewinsky that we will be hearing about in 2016. But this is who Dems are already lining up behind. They truly don’t understand the electorate if they think the public’s gonna roll their eyes are all this Clinton drama or write it off as Republican desperation. The difference between the the pathetic stuff they try to throw at the Obamas and the Clintons is, the Clinton stuff is real. Monica Lewinsky is real. Bill Clinton did lie to the American people. He did lie to his wife. She did smear and threaten numerous women during the 1992 campaign, to keep them from coming out and telling their stories. All of this is real. And these white liberals who think that after 6 years of the stable and drama-free Obamas, we’re gonna get back on board for dysfuntion that we really don’t want, they’ve got another thing coming.

    • Ametia says:

      NAW NAW NAW! Cum-stained dress, cigars, “fairy-tale” and “as far as I know he was born in America” remarks about Barack Obama from these 2?

      HELL NO!

  12. rikyrah says:

    Bring Back Our Girls: Why the World Is Finally Talking About Nigeria’s Kidnapped Students

    The girls were relaxing in their dorms at the Government Girls Secondary School in the northern Nigerian town of Chibok when gunmen arrived in trucks, cars and on motorcycles.

    There were dozens of them — suspected jihadis with the Boko Haram Islamic group — and they were heavily armed. After shooting the guards, and setting fire to houses, the terrorists kidnapped nearly 300 of the girls and drove off into the woods.

    That was on April 15. The girls haven’t been heard from since.

    And the media, for the most part, has remained largely silent. Coverage of the missing girls has been dwarfed by the other major stories of late — the South Korean ferry, the racist NBA owner and the missing Malaysia Airlines plane.

    “Maybe if the more than 200 Nigerian girls abducted from their school weeks ago were on a ferry in Korea, a jet liner in the Indian Ocean, in the owner’s box at a Clippers basketball game, or were white, the world would pay more attention,” Boing Boing blogger Xeni Jardin said, echoing the thoughts of many.

    “If it had happened anywhere else, this would be the world’s biggest story,” said CNN’s Frida Ghitis.

    But now, three weeks later, a hashtag associated with their disappearance has been tweeted nearly 1 million times.

  13. The USGS has issued a rare earthquake warning Oklahoma for the first of it’s kind for any state east of The Rockies.

    Mile for mile, there are almost as many earthquakes rattling Oklahoma as California this year. This major increase in seismic shaking led to a rare earthquake warning today (May 5) from the U.S. Geological Survey and the Oklahoma Geological Survey.

    In a joint statement, the agencies said the risk of a damaging earthquake — one larger than magnitude 5.0 — has significantly increased in central Oklahoma.

    Geologists don’t know when or where the state’s next big earthquake will strike, nor will they put a number on the increased risk. “We haven’t seen this before in Oklahoma, so we had some concerns about putting a specific number on the chances of it,” Robert Williams, a research geophysicist with the USGS Earthquake Hazards Program in Golden, Colorado, told Live Science. “But we know from other cases around the world that if you have an increasing number of small earthquakes, the chances of a larger one will go up.” [Watch 2500+ Oklahoma Earthquakes Since 2012 (Video)]

  14. rikyrah says:

    Gunmen abduct eight more girls in Nigeria: police
    MAIDUGURI, Nigeria Tue May 6, 2014 11:54am EDT

    (Reuters) – Suspected Boko Haram gunmen kidnapped eight girls from a village near one of their strongholds in northeastern Nigeria overnight, police and residents said on Tuesday.

    The abduction of the girls, aged 12 to 15, follows the kidnapping of more than 200 other schoolgirls by the Islamist militant group last month.

    Lazarus Musa, a resident of the village of Warabe, told Reuters that armed men had opened fire during the raid.

  15. Louie Gohmert: Constitution only protects Americans who ‘cling to God and guns’

    Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) recently asserted that the U.S. Constitution only applied to people “who cling to their God and their guns.”

    Speaking at a rally in Iowa for Republican Senate candidate Sam Clovis on Friday, Gohmert recalled that he had initially been blamed after Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC) had shouted “You lie!” during President Barack Obama’s State of the Union Address in 2009.

    “Somebody yells ‘You lie!’ and the camera goes on me!” he told the crowd, adding that he “knew” the president wasn’t telling the truth about an immigration bill.

    “And so Joe was right,” Gohmert continued. “That’s not how a country goes forward effectively, with a leader that will play those kinds of games. You know, truth is too important.”

    The Texas Republican then pointed to an 1798 John Adams quote: “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

    “It only is fit for people who cling to their God and their guns, you know?” Gohmert offered as an interpretation to the delight of the crowd. “So, it is deeply troubling if you get in these tough situations and you can’t trust your leadership.”

  16. Happy Teacher Appreciation Day, Yahtc and all the wonderful teachers out there!


  17. rikyrah says:

    Debunking Black (and White) Conservatives’ Strange and Sick Obsession with the ‘Slave Mentality’

    “When black conservatives such as Angela McGlowan talk about a “slave
    mentality” among the black community is she including slave rebellions
    led by men such as Denmark Vessey, Nat Turner, Gabriel Prossner,
    Touissant Louverture, Charles Deslondes, Zumbi, and others who took up
    arms and fought for their freedom against white society?

    Does a slave mentality include the many acts of day-to-day resistance
    such as poisonings, setting fires, breaking farm equipment, or
    destroying crops that were commonplace across the South and elsewhere?

    White slave owners were so terrified of slave uprisings that in many
    areas it was mandated that whites must bring guns with them to church on
    Sunday (the day when a rebellion was most expected) and all able bodied
    white men serve on the slave patrol.

    What of how slaves fought a guerrilla war against white slave
    patrollers, killed overseers, pushed back for basic human rights against
    their masters, and carved out their own spaces for community and
    dignity? Does this count as a “slave mentality”?”

  18. Happy Nurses Week, Ametia!

    Happy Nurses Week

  19. rikyrah says:

    Scarborough: Obama ‘Should Have Known’ GOP Was Radicalized When He Ran


    Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough said Tuesday morning that President Barack Obama “should have known” that he would have to deal with a “more radicalized” Republican Party from the moment he ran, and faulted Obama for not learning from the example of former President Bill Clinton — called it — even as his fellow panelists looked at him as if he were bonkers.

    Scarborough’s remarks came after New Yorker editor David Remnick said that Obama has had to deal with a “more radicalized” GOP than even Clinton did.


    • Ametia says:

      Isn’t it just like the racist bigots to blame the one they’re prejudiced against. It’s Obama fault that the GOP are racist power-hungry obstructionist!

      Yes, Joe, just like it was that dead intern found in your office fault. She should have known better than to be mixed up with you, Joe a married congressman.

    • Ametia says:

      Malala is who the future of our young girls and women will aspire to serve as true role models of service to human BEINGS on this planet earth.

  20. rikyrah says:

    meta @metaquest
    George P. Bush quest for public office: campaign funds of $2.2M furnished by same industry he’ll regulate if he wins.

    8:02 PM – 5 May 2014

  21. rikyrah says:

    Barracks O’Bama @P0TUS
    So Hillary, ex of WalMart’s board, is holding a fundraiser with Bigot de Rothschild: … #WeCanDoBetter

    7:41 PM – 5 May 2014

  22. rikyrah says:

    The Oregonian @Oregonian
    Gov. John Kitzhaber performs CPR on woman lying unconscious on Portland street.

    12:20 AM – 6 May 2014

  23. rikyrah says:

    When insurance is a matter of life and death

    05/06/14 08:00 AM—Updated 05/06/14 08:10 AM

    By Steve Benen

    The benefits of having health insurance, as opposed to the alternative, are so numerous it’s hard to know where to start. The list is intuitively obvious whether you’ve been following the political debate or not: there’s health security, economic security, societal benefits, etc.

    But at its most basic level, having access to affordable medical care is also life-saving. When policymakers reform dysfunctional health care systems and extend coverage to the uninsured, it can mean the difference between life and death – a fact we were reminded of yesterday.

    The death rate in Massachusetts dropped significantly after it adopted mandatory health care coverage in 2006, a study released Monday found, offering evidence that the country’s first experiment with universal coverage – and the model for crucial parts of President Obama’s health care law – has saved lives, health economists say.

    The study tallied deaths in Massachusetts from 2001 to 2010 and found that the mortality rate – the number of deaths per 100,000 people – fell by about 3 percent in the four years after the law went into effect. The decline was steepest in counties with the highest proportions of poor and previously uninsured people. In contrast, the mortality rate in a control group of counties similar to Massachusetts in other states was largely unchanged.

    A national 3 percent decline in mortality among adults under 65 would mean about 17,000 fewer deaths a year.

  24. rikyrah says:

    My Original Goon is back!!

    Before there was Huck, or Papa Pope, or Mama Pope..

    There was Jack Bauer!


  25. rikyrah says:

    Clarence Thomas would turn back the clock

    05/06/14 08:43 AM

    By Steve Benen

    In yesterday’s Supreme Court ruling on official government prayers at town-council meetings, Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the 5-4 decision arguing that such practices are permissible under the First Amendment. There was a separate concurring opinion from Justices Samuel Alito and Antonin Scalia, but then Justice Clarence Thomas decided to go further than any of his colleagues.

    As Dahlia Lithwick noted, Thomas made the case “that in his view the First Amendment religion clauses don’t apply to the states in the first place.”

    Wait, really? Yep, that’s what Thomas actually believes.

    …Thomas couldn’t get Scalia’s signature for another part of his dissenting opinion, in which Thomas – not for the first time – disputes the notion that the 1st Amendment’s ban on the “establishment” of religion even applies to state and local governments.

    Here’s the deal: the first 16 words of the First Amendment reads, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” Nearly a century ago, under something called the incorporation doctrine, courts ruled that most of the Bill of Rights applies to state and local government, too.

    In other words, under the literal text of the Constitution, Congress can’t pass laws interfering in religion, abridging the freedom of speech, or undermining a free press, but once the Bill of Rights was applied more broadly, neither can states or municipalities.

  26. rikyrah says:

    Redeeming the image of black men in the media
    By The Admin | May 5, 2014 0 Comments

    High school graduation rates are at a historic all-time high. Black students are helping drive this historic trend by graduating at a 69 percent clip — their highest rate in years. But you wouldn’t know this by watching mainstream media outlets. Time and time again, the media has painted black men in a negative light. Almost every night, you can turn on the television and watch a news story about a black man shooting or robbing someone.

    This was the subject of DCTV’s 25th anniversary panel: “Changing Coverage of Black Males in the Media” coordinated by DCTV’s President Nantz Rickard and Executive Vice President Bob Thomas, alongside their outstanding production crew. Bringing together such an impressive and highly accomplished panel, DCTV ignited a firestorm of new thinking about the neglected recognizable achievements of many black Americans across our nation.

    Last week, I had the privilege of moderating a panel that included filmmaker, producer and director of “What Black Men Think” Janks Morton; New York Times and CNN contributor Jamal Simmons; and EZ Street of radio station WKYS, FM93.9. “If it bleeds it leads” remarked Mr. Morton during our discussion. The media has an obsession with reporting on violent, specifically black, crime. Instead of focusing on the positive developments of the black community, the media loves to tell stories that grab viewers’ attention using a shock factor.

    The kinds of stories highlighting inner-city black crime possess this shock factor and, according to Mr. Simmons, demonstrate prejudice among many media outlets.(Washington Times) –

  27. rikyrah says:

    Another GOP Anti-Obamacare Talking Point Down The Drain As Uninsured Rate Hits Record Low

    By: Justin Baragona
    Monday, May, 5th, 2014, 2:58 pm

    Gallup released a new tracking poll on Monday that shows that the uninsured rate for Americans dropped to 13.4% in April. This continues a trend that started at the end of 2013, when the uninsured rate peaked at 18.0%. Since then, we’ve seen the marketplaces open, allowing millions of people to buy private health insurance, many for the first time in their lives. Due to the success of the exchanges, which signed up more people than previously anticipated, the uninsured rate has dropped over four points in a period of only a few months.

    After open enrollment began in October, the number of uninsured people in the United States started to decline at a steady rate. Overall for the first quarter of 2014, the uninsured rate was 15.6%. For the final month of the first quarter, March, the uninsured rate was down to 15.0%. Now, in just one month’s time, we see an even larger drop as we are now sitting at 13.4%. Considering that there were other people able to sign up for private insurance plans through the month of April due to heavy volume at the end of the open enrollment period, we should see another drop in May.

    This large drop in the uninsured rate takes away another Republican talking point, that the ACA was causing millions of people to lose their insurance. This poll completely contradicts that, as it shows millions of people who have gained insurance that previously did not have any. Obviously, there was a huge net gain in the insurance pools due to the provisions in the law that allowed people who were unable to sign up before or had to pay for extremely expensive plans with little coverage due to preexisting conditions to finally purchase health insurance. Also, the expansion of Medicaid and the provision that allows adults up to 26 years of age to remain on their parents’ plans has helped drop the number of uninsured in this country.

  28. rikyrah says:

    The D.C. Press Corps Is Suffering From Benghazi Stockholm Syndrome

    Last week, after Republicans pivoted to Benghazi in unison, The Huffington Post’s Sam Stein observed an interesting phenomenon.

    When it came time to put White House press secretary Jay Carney in the hot seat, reporters for smaller outlets—whose correspondents are consigned to the back rows of the briefing room—were interested in real, unfolding dramas: Ukraine, the Affordable Care Act, the Snowden disclosures, and so on.

    But when Carney moved to the big-name journalists at the front of the room, the only thing anyone seemed to care about was Benghazi.

  29. rikyrah says:

    Fox declares the One True News Story

    05/05/14 05:17 PM—Updated 05/05/14 05:19 PM
    By Steve Benen

    On Friday, President Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel hosted a joint press conference from the White House Rose Garden, and the two world leaders had quite a bit of ground to cover. They fielded questions on the Ukrainian crisis, surveillance policies, and a variety of current events.

    But Fox News wouldn’t show its viewers the press conference unless reporters asked about the Benghazi attack from nearly two years ago.

    Today, something very similar happened.

    It happened again on Monday, when Fox anchor Jon Scott promised to cover a White House presser if and only if the topic shifted to a House select committee on Benghazi, which will be headed up by Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC).

    With White House aide John Podesta delivering a presentation on energy and climate during the press briefing, Scott couldn’t hide his shock.

    “Jay Carney is normally at this podium. This is one of his understudies, you might say,” Scott said referring to Podesta, who is not actually one of Carney’s understudies.

    This is getting a little weird.

    By Fox’s reasoning, there is only One True News Story. If current events distract from the One True News Story, then current events must be ignored … while we wait for something to happen with the One True News Story.

    That the One True News Story actually happened 20 months ago – it can no longer be accurately characterized as a current event – is a minor detail that should apparently be ignored by real Americans.

  30. rikyrah says:

    Patrick Patterson @patrickpat803
    Check out the changes to President @BarackObama Nat’l Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse website @joshuadubois

    8:50 PM – 5 May 2014

  31. rikyrah says:

    It’s All Too Easy to Relate To The Documentary ‘The Brainwashing of My Dad’

    By: Deborah Foster
    Monday, May, 5th, 2014, 9:49 pm

    How many liberals have politically noxious relatives who were once reasonable people until they turned on Rush Limbaugh for their commute to work or ran across Fox as they flipped through their cable channels? Robert Sobel, writing for the Examiner, asked the question, “Why do Americans vote against their own interests?” He concluded that too many Americans are caught in the right wing misinformation echo chamber, whether it is listening to right wing radio, watching Fox News, or reading the conservative blogosphere. Recently, an upcoming documentary, “The Brainwashing of My Dad,” has been gaining attention. For this documentary, Jen Senko traces the history of her father’s transformation from mild-mannered Democrat to angry, racist Republican. As one might guess, this metamorphosis occurred following a change in his routine where he ended up having a long commute to work and tuned into Rush Limbaugh. His seething, bitter personality change only worsened as he dove deeper into right wing media. In her documentary, when it is completed, she intends to show her efforts to “de-program” her father. No doubt everyone will be curious to see how that works out.

    Personally, in my family, the worst offenders in terms of personality deterioration following heavy doses of the right wing propaganda mill have been my grandfather and uncle. My late grandfather was a retired chiropractor, had no TV, and sat around his house much of the day listening to the radio. Somewhere along the way, he tuned his radio into Rush Limbaugh in the early 1990s. He was positively relentless from that time forward in his attempts to draw me into listening as well, and the fact that this went on for well over a decade fits well with a brainwashing model.

  32. rikyrah says:

    Republicans Launch a Draft Mitt Movement To Get Romney To Run in 2016

    By: Jason Easley
    Monday, May, 5th, 2014, 5:20 pm
    Republicans are so desperate for a candidate that they starting a movement to draft Mitt Romney to run again in 2016.

    The Deseret News has the details:


    The rumors of third Mitt Romney run for the presidency have been picking up steam for a while. Last week, CBS News’ Bob Schieffer reported that Romney would consider running again in 2016 if Jeb Bush doesn’t run. On tax day, Josh Romney tweeted a picture of his Dad standing in line at the post office to “pay his taxes.” Then there is the fact that Mitt Romney continues to pop up on television with regularity, and act like he is running for president.

  33. rikyrah says:

    A Deal With the Devil
    by BooMan
    Mon May 5th, 2014 at 12:43:58 PM EST

    Following on my last piece on How Race Distorts the Electorate, I want to discuss how Republican strategies during the Obama presidency have distorted the electorate. It’s hard to characterize the motives the GOP has had in each individual case but, collectively, they have pursued strategies that have had the effect of polarizing the electorate by race.

    The most infamous example is the first-term obsession with the birth certificate. This was a naked example of using massive disinformation to alienate the president from low-intelligence white people. But it also absolutely infuriated black folks and made them more protective of the president than they otherwise would have been.

    Similarly, the collective freak-out about ObamaCare and its characterization as some exotic un-American socialist scheme, was perceived by blacks as a barely-veiled racist attack both on the president and on their community.

    The decision by Mitch McConnell and other party leaders to oppose Obama’s entire agenda before he even was sworn into office was seen by blacks as a totally unprecedented lack of respect that had never been done to any other president.

    The decision to pursue widespread voter ID laws that disproportionately disenfranchise blacks was so toxic that it actually led to higher black turnout in the 2012 election than white turnout, for the first time ever. Following that up with the Supreme Court’s decision to gut the Voting Rights Act is like setting a nuclear bomb off. Attacks on Affirmative Action only exacerbate an already explosive opposition to the GOP in the black community. Holding Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt is another thumb in the eye.

    The refusal to allow a vote on immigration reform in the House is infuriating Latinos.

    Meanwhile, the right-wing media machine has been giving whites a steady diet of racial grievance. This has succeeded in driving up support for the GOP among whites, but the cost is an ever-increasing erosion of support among anyone of color.

  34. rikyrah says:


    Mr. de Blasio’s Moon Shot

    May 5, 2014

    Mayor Bill de Blasio’s housing plan is so big that it took not one but two media events, in Brooklyn and the Bronx, to unveil it on Monday, in which the mayor and local pols exulted over the plan’s breadth and ambition. Yet if Mr. de Blasio really is going to keep his campaign promise and end New York’s crisis of inequality and housing unaffordability, he is going to have to go big.

    And this plan is what big looks like.

    It’s a $41 billion effort to build or preserve 200,000 affordable units in all five boroughs, over 10 years, for the benefit of half a million New Yorkers — 120,000 apartments preserved and 80,000 newly built — using everything from energy retrofitting (to keep landlord’s costs and rents down) to new housing and building codes to a thorough cataloging of neighborhoods and underused spaces where development opportunities await.

    Its most striking feature is its eager embrace of adding height and density to neighborhoods beyond Manhattan, through mandatory inclusionary zoning, the stick-plus-carrot that requires builders in newly rezoned areas to set aside a percentage of units as forever affordable. New York has a voluntary plan that has produced about 4,500 affordable units in the last 25 years, which is pretty good but not the scale Mr. de Blasio wants. The plan also emphasizes losing no more ground on existing affordable units. It seeks to identify neighborhoods vulnerable to gentrification, to “lock in” affordable rents before it’s too late and to prod landlords to keep rents down.

  35. rikyrah says:

    RACHEL MADDOW 05/05/14

    Right regrets contrasting Obama with Clintons


    Steve Schmidt, Republican strategist, talks with Steve Kornacki about the awkward position Republicans are in having lionized Bill and Hillary Clinton to make President Obama look bad only to have to tear her down again as they look ahead to 2016.


  36. rikyrah says:

    Boko Haram Could Make Good on Threat to ‘Sell’ Nigerian Girls

    By Mike Brunker

    If Islamic terror group Boko Haram abducted more than 200 Nigerian schoolgirls, as its leader claims, the kidnappers could fulfill their reported threat to “sell” the girls into slavery by tapping that nation’s thriving human-trafficking market, experts say.

    On Monday, the French news agency AFP reported that the leader of Boko Haram, Abubakar Shekau, had claimed responsibility for the gunpoint abduction of the schoolgirls from a secondary school in the village of Chibok in northeast Nigeria on April 14, and threatened to “sell them in the market.” The report, which AFP said was based on a videotaped address by Shekau, could not immediately be verified by NBC News.

    While the suggestion that slavery could be conducted so openly might strike some as outlandish, it is an unfortunate reality, said Brad Myles, CEO of the anti-human-trafficking group Polaris Project. The human-trafficking market in Nigeria has been well documented in a series of reports by governmental and non-governmental agencies, and the problem is by no means confined to the west African nation, he said.

  37. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone :)

    • Ametia says:

      Good Morning, Rikyrah & Everyone! :-)

    • Yahtc says:

      Good Morning, rikyrah, SG2, Ametia and Everyone :)

      • Yahtc says:

        Willie Mayes was born on this day in 1931. From Wikipedia:

        “Willie Howard Mays, Jr. (born May 6, 1931), nicknamed “The Say Hey Kid” is a retired American professional baseball player who spent the majority of his Major League Baseball (MLB) career as a center fielder with the New York and San Francisco Giants before finishing with the New York Mets. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1979, his first year of eligibility.

        “Mays won two MVP awards and shares the record of most All-Star Games played (24) with Hank Aaron & Stan Musial. Ted Williams said, “They invented the All-Star Game for Willie Mays.” Mays ended his career with 660 home runs, third at the time of his retirement, and currently fourth all-time. He was a center fielder and won a record-tying 12 Gold Gloves starting the year the award was introduced six seasons into his career.

        “Willie Mays’s career statistics and longevity in the pre-PED era, the more recent acknowledgement of Mays as perhaps the finest five-tool player ever, and the overwhelming consensus of many surveys and other expert analyses carefully examining Mays’s relative performance, have led to a growing opinion that Mays was possibly the greatest all-around baseball player of all-time.

        ” In 1999, Mays placed second on The Sporting News’s “List of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players”, making him the highest-ranking living player. Later that year, he was also elected to the Major League Baseball All-Century Team. Mays is one of five National League players to have had eight consecutive 100-RBI seasons, along with Mel Ott, Sammy Sosa, Chipper Jones and Albert Pujols. Mays hit over 50 home runs in 1955 and 1965, representing the longest time span between 50-plus home run seasons for any player in Major League Baseball history.”

        Uploaded on Jul 4, 2011 by sayheywilliemays
        A Tribute To Willie Mays by the Great Silver Bear feature Willie Mays highlight reel. Discovered this on iTunes and felt it needed a video to really capture the imagery. Great song, even better ball player. If you’re a SF Giants fan, check it out. Have of his great highlights are in here.

      • Yahtc says:

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