Tuesday Open Thread | Christmas Jams

Christmas candles 87Mary, Did You Know?” is a Christmas song with lyrics written by Mark Lowry and music written by Buddy Greene.

Mark wrote the words in 1984 “when his pastor asked him to write the program for the living Christmas tree choir presentation. It was while he was working on the project that Mark considered what it would have been like to have been Jesus’ mother”[citation needed]. The music was written by Buddy Greene several years later. Michael English was the first recording artist to record and release ‘Mary did you know” on his debut album aptly titled “Michael English” which was released on January 1st, 1992.

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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57 Responses to Tuesday Open Thread | Christmas Jams

  1. rikyrah says:

    Tom Perez ‏@TomPerez Dec 19

    .@GOP If being Asst AG for Civil Rights makes me “radical on race issues” it’s worth questioning who’s “radical.”

  2. rikyrah says:

    Texas to cut Planned Parenthood from Medicaid
    12/20/16 07:35 PM EST

    Planned Parenthood will no longer receive funding from Texas’s Medicaid program, state health officials announced Tuesday.

    Officials delivered a final legal notice to Planned Parenthood, the Texas Tribune reports, and the change will take effect in 30 days unless the organization files an appeal with the state.

    Gov. Greg Abbott (R) and state health officials first moved to cut Medicaid funding last year when controversial undercover videos of Planned Parenthood officials surfaced.

    Anti-abortion groups have claimed the videos prove the organization is “harvesting” fetal tissue, but the videos were proven to be highly edited, and Planned Parenthood fully denied the allegations.
    Texas’s Planned Parenthood affiliates use Medicaid funding for family planning and women’s health services — separate from its abortion services, which don’t receive public funds.

    The battle will likely move to federal court

  3. rikyrah says:

    uh huh

    uh huh

    Best Buddies: Trump, Austrian Neo-Nazis, and Putin
    by Martin Longman
    December 20, 2016 3:02 PM

    In the process of pointing out that their flirtations with John Birchers and other general “rightwing nutballish” behaviors are quickly turning the Trump administration “into the grease trap of American political history,” Charles Pierce stops to notice that incoming National Security Adviser Michael Flynn is still in league with the Russkies. To wit, the lunatic far-right Austrian Freedom Party leader Heinz-Christian Strache traveled to New York in November to meet with Flynn. The Freedom Party presidential nominee, Norbert Hofer, just came within a whisper of winning an revanchist Anschlussian political victory in the early December election. He had hoped to do better, saying just prior to the vote that he was drawing “encouragement from Donald Trump’s presidential victory in the United States.”

    So, Strache, Hofer, Flynn and Trump are best buddies, it seems, and now Strache and Hofer have decided to balm their political wounds by sidling up to the Kremlin:

    Heinz-Christian Strache, Freedom Party leader, and Norbert Hofer, the candidate who narrowly lost Austria’s presidential election earlier this month, signed a “working agreement” on Monday with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s United Russia Party, according to a statement from the Freedom Party.

    Pierce’s response is laconic:

    At the risk of being called a neo-McCarthyite, may I point out that this smacks an awful lot of the incoming administration’s involvement in a worldwide right-wing movement at the center of which is our good friend Vladimir Putin.

    Of course, this is impossible because liberals who lived through the Cold War keep telling me that all this Russia-bashing is just so much Dulles Brothers flimflam designed to distract the plebes from their rightful destiny at the head of the dictatorship of the proletariat. To bash Russia is to bash the left here at home in order to crush the left everywhere from Ho Chi Minh City to Buenos Aires.

    It therefore cannot be that our president is in the thrall, if not the control, of a “worldwide right-wing movement” to restore the purity of essence to the European bloodstream and bring Christianity back to its former central and crusading glory.

  4. rikyrah says:

    Will Trump’s OMB Director Blow Up the Global Economy?
    by Martin Longman
    December 20, 2016 12:36 PM

    Catherine Rampell of the Washington Post is worried that Mick Mulvaney will blow up the global economy by destroying the creditworthiness of the United States’ debt. It’s not an unreasonable concern considering that Mulvaney has been nominated to serve as Trump’s director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), a position which is responsible for preparing the president’s budget proposal to Congress.

    Mulvaney is most famous as a congressman for being a debt ceiling truther. That is, he joined irresponsible nutcases like Paul Ryan in arguing that the United States government could fail to make debt payments on time without defaulting on its debt or causing a downgrade in our nation’s credit rating.

    Here’s how Ryan, who was then serving as the House Budget Committee chairman, put it in June 2011:

    “If a bondholder misses a payment for a day or two or three or four — what is more important is you are putting the government in a materially better position to better pay its bills going forward.”

    In early August 2011, Standard & Poor’s downgraded our credit rating simply because we had come so close to defaulting.

    Here’s what Mulvaney said in October 2013:

    “We’re not going to default; there is no default. There’s an [Office of Management and Budget] directive from the 1980s, the last time we got fairly close to not raising the debt ceiling, that clearly lays out the process by which the Treasury secretary prioritizes interest payments.”

    Days later, Fitch Ratings issued a warning that “it could cut the sovereign credit rating of the United States from AAA, citing the political brinkmanship over raising the federal debt ceiling” and “Dagong Global Credit Rating downgraded the United States from A to A-, and maintained a negative outlook on the country’s credit.”

    Since entering Congress, Mulvaney has never voted to raise the debt ceiling and has opposed all budget deals crafted to avoid default. He has consistently argued that that we can prioritize interest payments without doing damage to our credit or blowing up the global economy.

    As Rampell notes, Mulvaney is out of his mind. And Trump is insane on this issue, too.

    …Mulvaney and the president-elect have at least one major thing in common: an alarming openness to defaulting on the federal debt.

    “I would borrow knowing that if the economy crashed you could make a deal,” [Trump] said.

    When the financial press freaked out, he walked back the language — only to revive it a month later.

    Mulvaney has also questioned the need to preserve the country’s sterling reputation as a borrower.

  5. rikyrah says:

    Trump’s OMB pick seems poised to ignite a worldwide financial crisis
    He’s content to default on our debt — and that’s dangerous.

    By Catherine Rampell

    It’s not the sexiest White House job. But it might soon be among the most dangerous.

    Over the weekend, President-elect Donald Trump tapped Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-S.C.) to be his director of the Office of Management and Budget. This Cabinet-level post is responsible for producing the federal budget, overseeing and evaluating executive branch agencies and otherwise advising the president on fiscal matters. It’s a position with tremendous, far-reaching power, even if the public doesn’t pay much attention to it.

    Which is why it’s so concerning that Trump chose Mulvaney, who seems poised to help Trump ignite another worldwide financial crisis.

    Mulvaney was first elected to Congress in 2010 as part of the anti-government, tea party wave. A founding member of the right-wing House Freedom Caucus, he is among Congress’s most committed fiscal hawks. He has repeatedly voted against his own party’s budget proposals because they were insufficiently conservative.

    All this will presumably put him at odds with Trump’s plans to balloon federal deficits through a $7 trillion cut in individual and corporate income taxes, another half-trillion in infrastructure subsidies and other major spending expansions.

  6. rikyrah says:

    Matthew Miller Retweeted Mike Hayes
    FFS. Makes clear the FBI didn’t know what was in the emails when Comey sent his explosive letter. No wonder they didn’t want this unsealed.

    Uh huh
    Uh huh

  7. rikyrah says:

    In Donald Trump’s Washington, corruption will be utterly shameless
    By Paul Waldman
    December 20 at 9:25 AM

    In ordinary circumstances, an incoming administration is sensitive to political controversies that might distract it or derail its agenda. Once one emerges, everyone is on notice to be careful about keeping the controversy from turning into an outright scandal. You certainly don’t want to repeat the same behavior that drew negative attention in the first place. The only question is how to make the controversy go away as quickly and quietly as possible.

    But that’s not how the Trump clan operates.

    For example, one of the most difficult questions for the incoming administration concerns the president-elect’s apparent intention to use the highest office in the land as a moneymaking venture, leveraging his political power into greater wealth for himself and his family. To that end, his new hotel in Washington has been encouraging foreign diplomats to give it their business, which the diplomats clearly understand as a way of currying favor with the president, or at least avoiding his displeasure. As one said in a story that The Post broke a month ago, “Why wouldn’t I stay at his hotel blocks from the White House, so I can tell the new president, ‘I love your new hotel!’ Isn’t it rude to come to his city and say, ‘I am staying at your competitor?’”

    Indeed, quite rude. And now we learn that the Trump Organization is amping up the pressure on foreign governments to put more money in Donald Trump’s pocket. Judd Legum and Kira Lerner of ThinkProgress have the details:

    The Embassy of Kuwait allegedly cancelled a contract with a Washington, D.C. hotel days after the presidential election, citing political pressure to hold its National Day celebration at the Trump International Hotel instead.

    A source tells ThinkProgress that the Kuwaiti embassy, which has regularly held the event at the Four Seasons in Georgetown, abruptly canceled its reservation after members of the Trump Organization pressured the ambassador to hold the event at the hotel owned by the president-elect. The source, who has direct knowledge of the arrangements between the hotels and the embassy, spoke to ThinkProgress on the condition of anonymity because the individual was not authorized to speak publicly. ThinkProgress was also able to review documentary evidence confirming the source’s account.

    In the early fall, the Kuwaiti Embassy signed a contract with the Four Seasons. But after the election, members of the Trump Organization contacted the Ambassador of Kuwait, Salem Al-Sabah, and encouraged him to move his event to Trump’s D.C. hotel, the source said.

  8. Didn’t I tell y’all gift bags are God sent?! LOL!


  9. Ametia says:
  10. rikyrah says:

    How Valerie Jarrett became President Obama’s longest serving adviser


  11. I was looking for my gift bags and ran across a bag filled with Christmas stockings and ornament hooks. I didn’t buy them this year. Maybe I bought them after Christmas last year and put them up? I oin’t know. LOL!

  12. I hate wrapping gifts. Don’t let them pile up and then you may not want to wrap them at all. I wrap them as I get them, two or three at a time. I’ve wrapped them all except 2 because I ran out of tape. Gift bags are God sent. Yes, Lord!

  13. I love this.


  14. :)

    So sweet. I love you!


  15. rikyrah says:

    Obama Grants 231 Pardons- Most Ever In A Single Day

    WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama on Monday pardoned 78 people and shortened the sentences of 153 others convicted of federal crimes — the most individual clemencies ever granted in a single day by any president. As he nears the end of his second term, Obama has issued more commutations than the previous 11 presidents combined, according to the White House.

    “The 231 individuals granted clemency today have all demonstrated that they are ready to make use — or have already made use — of a second chance,” White House counsel Neil Eggleston wrote in a blog post. “While each clemency recipient’s story is unique, the common thread of rehabilitation underlies all of them.”

    Of the people granted clemency Monday, 54 were serving life sentences. In the last months of Obama’s presidency, administration officials have moved quickly to rule on all the pending clemency applications. The president will continue to review clemency applications, and is expected to grant more pardons and commutations before he leaves office, Eggleston said.

    Obama has used his constitutional clemency power to reduce the sentences of 1,176 people since he has been in office, according to the White House. About a third of them, 395 people, were serving life sentences. The previous single-day record of 151 commutations was set by Franklin Roosevelt in 1935. Monday’s announcement doubles the number of pardons granted by Obama to 148 people.

    In 2014, Obama sought to bring attention to what his administration describes as over-sentencing in federal prisons by directing the Justice Department to prioritize petitions for commutations from nonviolent offenders who were serving longer sentences than they would receive today if they were convicted of the same crimes.

  16. rikyrah says:

    9 Things We Learned From Michelle Obama’s Farewell Interview With Oprah

    The interview is another reminder why so many people love her.
    If you ever wanted a lesson on living your best life, as well as “living out loud” — as our First Lady put it — it’s a must you watch this interview between Oprah and Michelle Obama.

    Oprah conducted Mrs. Obama’s farewell interview Monday night, a revealing and insightful chat that looked back at FLOTUS’ eight years in the White House.

    Oprah, a master interviewer, got into the nitty-gritty of it all, including how Michelle turned the White House into a more inclusive space, juggled the expectations of the First Lady job and raised daughters Sasha and Malia in the White House.

    Here are nine insightful and interesting things we’ve learned:

    Michelle has learned to not hold grudges or any heavy energy:
    The bad stuff I just don’t hold onto,” she told Oprah.”We, as women, do it. We, as Black women better be able to do it.”


    She is still a Black mama to Sasha and Malia:

    Oprah and FLOTUS spoke at length about what it took to ensure the First Daughters turned out okay. And though Mrs. Obama admits there were challenges for the girls, she wasn’t having any of their “high class problems” as complaints

    “You live in the White House,” she told Oprah about her girls. “You don’t get to complain about this.”


    She was able to navigate the First Lady role because she was “a grown up:”

    The role of First Lady had its difficulties, from setting a path without a map to handling the many expectations thrown her way. But her experience as a working woman helped. “I’ve been in the world…I have a very good sense of who I am.”

    • Ametia says:

      I loved the interview with FLOTUS so much. That question about helping that POS Trump & his wife transition was masterful..

      She’s going to follow the standard protocol for First Ladies, and be available for questions.

      What these folks do with that office after the Obamas leave IS ON THEM.

      So glad she’s on the record about her, her family and their lives going forward.

  17. OMG! OMG!

    I just got a basket of goodies delivered to my mailbox. I opened it and it smells sooo good. Skinluvvers body cream, bath bomb, soap, soap holder, washcloth and the basket is sooo pretty.

    Thank you so much, Riky rah! Two hugging smileys

    Merry Christmas to you and Peanut! Stay warm and be safe up there.

  18. rikyrah says:

    Which means…NO NO NO NO to ‘accepting’ Cheeto Benito.

    What Those Who Studied Nazis Can Teach Us About The Strange Reaction To Donald Trump
    While it’s important to watch the president-elect closely, we also must be mindful of our own response to him.
    12/19/2016 07:13 pm ET


    These reactions to Trump and his supporters have a way of separating ideas that usually move in tandem. Facts and truth are suddenly unrelated. Power no longer implies responsibility. Legitimacy and decency are now somehow passengers on separate ships. In this dynamic, People magazine can champion both the perpetrator and the victim and see no contradiction or betrayal. Lilla can use the victory of a campaign steeped in identity politics to highlight the ineffectiveness of identity politics. And Lerner can argue that a campaign “advanced” by sexism, racism and xenophobia can tell us much about the targets of that bigotry, i.e. that they need to behave differently, but little about the supporters of that campaign.

    So, why the rush to defend Trump’s supporters? Why the self-recriminations? Why the willingness to stretch the bounds of legitimacy to accommodate Trump’s antics? Much has been written about Trump’s demagoguery and its similarity to totalitarian leaders of the past, but what about Trump’s opponents? Are many of us borrowing a page from totalitarianism without realizing it? Are we empowering him? Are we coordinating?

    The word Gleichschaltung is often translated from the German as “coordination” and refers to the process of ― politically speaking ― getting in line. It often appears in books about the Nazi era. German Jewish philologist Victor Klemperer and German journalist Joachim Fest wrote about the personal cost of coordinating in their respective memoirs. German author Sebastian Haffner and Americans including journalist William Shirer wrote about the propaganda and politics of coordination.

    German-born Jewish political theorist Hannah Arendt, in one of her last interviews, explains it best.

    “The problem, the personal problem, was not what our enemies did, but what our friends did. Friends ‘coordinated’ or got in line.” And this coordination was not necessarily due to the “pressure of terror,” said Arendt, who escaped Germany in 1933. Intellectuals were particularly vulnerable to this wave of coordination. “The essence of being an intellectual is that one fabricates ideas about everything,” and many intellectuals of her time were “trapped by their own ideas.”

  19. rikyrah says:

    Obama’s last battles are our frontlines

    Spandan Chakrabarti
    December 19, 2016

    As of earlier this month, President Obama held the distinction of having granted clemency to more individuals than LBJ, and he continued that streak today with 153 commutations and 78 pardons today. The president is using his plenary power under the pardons and commutations clause to address a lifelong fight for justice: the lengthy imprisonment of nonviolent drug offenders.

    The President said something in his recent interview with Trevor Noah that caught my ear: the federal government, he said, is more analogous to an aircraft carrier than it is to a speed boat. Turning it around 180 degrees is a time consuming, difficult process.

    That may explain why President Obama is now engaged in a series of actions to protect liberal priorities. A lot of that is by executive order, but at least one big part of it is now law.

    Earlier this month, in a rare victory for the administration in Congress, both the House and the Senate passed the renewed 21st Century Cures Act – the bill better known as Vice President Biden’s moonshot bill. The bill was signed into law by President Obama on Tuesday, November 13. While the $1.8 billion in taxpayer investment into cancer research is the headline star of this bill, its $4.8 billion for the National Institutes of Health and streamlining of the drug approval process was something patient advocates from a wide ranging disease communities (including lupus, kidney disease and lung disease advocates) had been pushing. This was a major victory given the Republican Congress’ aversion to science.

    Moving on to more obvious and partisan liberal priorities, on December 14, the Obama administration finalized a rule prohibiting states from using federal dollars to discriminate against organizations like Planned Parenthood simply for providing abortion services. While these administrative rules are reversible (though such reversal may be subject to legal action), it requires the full rule-making process to be repeated, which gives advocates and activists time to create political groundswell against it.

  20. rikyrah says:

    We Must Have Trump, Because Colonialism
    by Martin Longman
    December 19, 2016 4:03 PM

    Let’s think about this:

    “Liberals say Mr. Trump’s victory is proof that the Electoral College is biased against big states and undemocratically marginalizes urban and nonwhite voters. Conservatives say the Electoral College serves as a necessary bulwark against big states, preventing California in particular from imposing ‘something like colonial rule over the rest of the nation,’ as the conservative analyst Michael Barone put it. California sided with Mrs. Clinton by a vote margin of four million, or 30 percentage points.”

    “Both sides have a point. But in the end, Mr. Trump won for a simple reason: The Electoral College’s (largely) winner-take-all design gives a lot of weight to battleground states. Mr. Trump had an advantage in the traditional battlegrounds because most are whiter and less educated than the country as a whole.”

    We can reconfigure this argument just a little and state it differently. For Michael Barone, it’s desirable that less educated people not be imposed upon with the “colonialism” of more educated people. If you don’t like that, you can say, instead, that white people, particularly white people with below-average education, should not be governed by a diverse group of better-educated people.

  21. rikyrah says:

    The rise of GOP mega-donor Rebekah Mercer

    By Matea Gold September 14

    Mitt Romney had just lost the 2012 presidential election, and a group of wealthy donors assembled in New York’s University Club was trying to figure out what had gone wrong. Suddenly, a young woman stood up before the largely male crowd and delivered an unsparing critique of the Republican’s technology and canvassing operations.

    Thomas Saunders III, chairman of the Heritage Foundation’s Board of Trustees, was impressed. “Who is that?” he asked the man next him.

    Soon, there would be few in conservative policy and political circles who did not know the name Rebekah Mercer.

    Galvanized in part by the Republicans’ 2012 White House loss, the middle daughter of billionaire hedge fund magnate Robert Mercer has rattled the status quo by directing her family’s resources into an array of investments on the right. In the past six years, the Mercers have poured tens of millions into Republican super PACs, Washington think tanks, state policy shops, a film-production company, a data analytics operation and one of the country’s most provocative online conservative news outlets.

    This year, Rebekah Mercer has emerged as a heavyweight presidential player, leading a super PAC financed by her father that was the biggest outside benefactor of Sen. Ted Cruz (Tex.) during the Republican primaries.

  22. rikyrah says:

    Trump voters believe that African Americans are less deserving than ” Average” Americans.



  23. rikyrah says:

    Morning Everyone,😐😐😐

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