To Flee Or Not To Flee? – That Is The Question

Obamaitis is contagious and spreading. Back in 2007 when we first warned about Barack Obama’s record of voting “present” little did we know it was an infectious disease.

By voting “present” instead of “yea” or “nay” Barack Obama fled from responsibility. Barack Obama was physically “present” but absent from the fight.

Wisconsin Obama Dimocrats have taken the Obama germ and fled to states governed by other Obama Dimocrats. Today we learned that Indiana Obama Dimocrats are now “Fleebaggers” too though we are sure they are in luxury quarters not a fleabag hotel.

Tactical retreats have an honorable history. Washington retreated across the Delaware, Allied armies avoided devastation at Dunkirk, and even in political history there are many instances when it was intelligent to live to fight another day. But considering that the Big Fight of the year will be the potential federal government shutdown (think debt ceiling and budgets that need to be passed) Obama Dimocrats in the states are undercutting Obama Dimocrats at the national level. How will national Dimocrats denounce a government shutdown when they are praising a government shutdown at the local level?

The Fleebagging tactics of the past few days are shutdowns or legislative filibusters by another name. We respect shutdowns and filibusters but it was Obama Dimocrats that have vigorously denounced both tactics. From appearances, these legislative gimmicks are all they have left. It didn’t have to be this way. What happened was the voters voted and elections have consequences. Isn’t that what Obama said in 2009? “I won.” “Elections have consequences.” Didn’t Obama say that?

The fact is that elections do have consequences. What Obama Dimocrats are witnessing is the consequences of drinking the poison called Obama. Last year, in an article called “The Obama Death Threat – You Got Me” we quoted from a Weekly Standard articled calledThe Clinton Voters Jump Ship“:

“For six months during the 2008 primaries, Obama and Hillary Clinton crisscrossed the country wooing voters. Obama consistently failed to win over important parts of the Democratic base, even after it became clear that he was going to be his party’s nominee. [snip]

Instead, it may be that his general election triumph was the aberration—that his coalition was never as strong as the financial panic of September 2008 made it seem. It would mean that he is now returning to his natural base of support and that the Jacksonians and others who resisted him in the primaries have turned away once again from his charms.

But it also suggests something more, that the Democratic party is now the party of Obama, for good and for ill. While the president is no Jacksonian, his party has many in its ranks. Democratic officeholders should be concerned about their voters fleeing not just from Obama but from their party as well. The president may be in the process of trimming the Democratic base back into something that looks an awful lot like his own primary base.

A few weeks ago Representative Marion Berry, a Jacksonian from Arkansas’s First District, recounted an exchange he had with the president. Asked how he was going to prevent a midterm disaster on the scale of 1994, Obama replied, “Well, the big difference here and in ’94 was you’ve got me.” Which may be precisely the problem.”

As the article noted, those of us who consider ourselves Democrats, not Obama Dimocrats, are “fleeing not just from Obama but from [our] their party as well.” The party ran away from us and we are running away from the party. In 1994 the economy was recovering but the voters did not believe it yet or did not credit Bill Clinton. But by 1996 and even during the off year elections in 1998 (as Republicans prepped to impeach him) Bill Clinton led Democrats to victory.

Barack Obama has led to defeat after defeat. As more Obama Dimocrats retire from the Senate and redistricting consequences come into play it is almost a sure thing (many commentators consider it a sure thing for sure) that Republicans will win the Senate in 2012 and keep control of the House. Because many of the same factors (many more Dimocrats will again be up for reelection in the Senate in 2016) will be in play in 2016 as in 2012 the future is very bleak for Obama and his Dimocratic Party Obamination.

Elections have consequences. In February 2010’s Mistake in ’08 – The Power Of Hillary Clinton Supporters quoting from the same source, we discussed some significant election results from the primaries of 2008:

“For six months during the 2008 primaries, Obama and Hillary Clinton crisscrossed the country wooing voters. Obama consistently failed to win over important parts of the Democratic base, even after it became clear that he was going to be his party’s nominee.

On February 5—Super Tuesday— Obama did poorly in both New Jersey and Massachusetts, losing to Clinton by 10 and 15 points, respectively. The exit polls were in line with Obama’s performance throughout the primary race: He did very well with blacks, wealthy voters, highly educated voters, and very young voters. He did poorly with working-class whites and older voters.”

Why review this election history? At the time we wrote those articles Republican Scott Brown had just won in Massachusetts the “Kennedy seat” and Republican Chris Christie had just beaten Jon Corzine in New Jersey. In New Jersey Christie won because of defections among the same groups who had been against Obama in the presidential primaries.” In Massachusetts Scott Brown won in the “ethnic, blue-collar strongholds that went heavily for Clinton in the primaries.”

When Obama went campaigning in Massachusetts and New Jersey it was a death sentence for the Dimocrats running in those states. When Obama said “You’ve got me” to those running for election in 2010 it was also a death sentence.

Scott Brown’s election was a rejection of Obama’s health scam and that rejection came from true blue Massachusetts. Obama and his Dimocrats ignored the people and the Massachusetts vote and rammed through the health scam. Now they complain that the Republicans in Wisconsin are ramming through legislation even though the people of Wisconsin voted for the Republican governor (and dumped the Dimocratic legislature for Republicans too) who specifically ran on that issue.

The Republican victory in New Jersey has been even more consequential:

“Now, Christie’s playbook has become standard reading for many of the Republican governors that were elected in 2010.

In Wisconsin last week, Gov. Scott Walker upset state public sector unions so much that Democratic lawmakers fled the state to avoid a vote on his budget, and teachers joined in solidarity by effectively going on strike.

In Ohio, Republican Gov. John Kasich vowed to take on public sector unions even before taking office. And now, the state’s legislature is considering a bill that would restrict collective bargaining rights and implement a merit pay system for teachers.

In Tennessee, Gov. Bill Haslam has presented plans to make it harder for public school teachers to achieve tenure. Almost immediately, teachers’ unions pegged the plan as being ‘anti-teacher.”

But the Christie effect isn’t just rippling through states where Republicans made major gains in the 2010 midterm elections.

An unlikely face of union reform and fiscal hawkishness can be found in recently-elected Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York. Cuomo, the son of a Democratic icon, has even vowed to take a hard look at state employee pensions.

The proposed reforms have union members seething in fury, but no state has been immune to budget difficulties. By taking on union contracts as a way to balance the budget, governors like Scott Walker, John Kasich, and Bill Haslam are following in the footsteps of Chris Christie.

So did Christie start a trend?”

You betcha.

The Republican takeover in states like New Jersey and Wisconsin (and Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania) are a direct consequence of Barack Obama being gifted the Democratic nomination in 2008. It is the Obama failure of leadership that had led to the current political and economic crisis. Instead of leading Obama has fled from the tough decisions. Instead of leading Obama has fled from economic reality. Instead of leading Obama has fled from those duped into voting for him and even from an honest conversation with those who have never trusted him.

Obama’s foolish Dimocrats are going to have to accept the consequences of having Obama as their “leader”. Obama Dimocrats are going to have to stand and fight or continue to run away. Running away like fleas from a dogcollar is not the answer. Obama has fled from any real leadership on fiscal policy. Obama’s only answer is to spend and spend. Once it comes to frugality it’s off to Vail, Spain, or the golf course.

The opposition party to the Republicans has to lead not flee. If there is a case to be made for more spending – make it. If there is a case for cutbacks – make it. But stop running away. Things are not going to get better by running away. Obama’s latest antics are causing a downturn in support for him:

“The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Tuesday shows that 21% of the nation’s voters Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as president. Forty-one percent (41%) Strongly Disapprove, giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -20 (see trends).

That’s the lowest level of Strong Approval yet recorded for President Obama and the lowest Approval Index rating since November.

Republicans have a nine-point advantage over Democrats on the Generic Congressional Ballot.

Overall, 44% of voters say they at least somewhat approve of the president’s performance. Fifty-five percent (55%) disapprove.

Most voters continue to favor repeal of the health care law.”

If these sometime lawmakers want to flee they should flee from Obama.

The fiscal problems of the country and the states are not going to disappear. This is not Egypt and Governor Scott Walker is not Mubarak. In Michigan, not a state run by Republicans, the disaster for Detroit schools is not in the future. The disaster has arrived. Blaming unions or running away from the problems posed by unions is not the answer. The problems are going to have to be confronted (in Wisconsin after today the Fleebaggers will have to earn their paychecks and collect them in person). Running away is not the answer.

Running away? We do wish Barack Obama would flee to Libya and plant a wet one on Gaddafi/Kaddafi who has vowed to stay in the country and “die a martyr.” In the land of camels, Daffy would rather fight than switch.

Obama has been near silent on Kaddafi/Gaddafi even as he was vocal about ousting dictator/American ally Mubarak. Perhaps it is because Libya has oil and Egypt has none. Maybe that is why Gaddafi/Kaddafi/DaffyDuck is supposedly threatening to blow up oil pipelines. George W. Bush was denounced for supposedly waging “war for oil” and Obama is waging “appeasement for oil”.

Why do we want Obama to go to Libya? It is not to rid ourselves of Obama by afflicting the long suffering Libyan people. No, we hope Obama goes to Libya and infects Kaddafi/Qaddaffi/Daffy with the contagion of Obamaitis. Once infected, Kaddafi will flee from Libya.

Obama can then rule Libya and Michelle can wear all the garish costumes previously worn by the madman of the Mideast. That would be a win/win for the world.

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717 thoughts on “To Flee Or Not To Flee? – That Is The Question

  1. Obama was in Cleveland today and did NOT show up in Cols to support the unions. Maybe the unions are finally fleeing Obama.

  2. “Now they complain that the Republicans in Wisconsin are ramming through legislation even though the people of Wisconsin voted for the Republican governor (and dumped the Dimocratic legislature for Republicans too) who specifically ran on that issue.”
    _____________________

    We’re being double teamed by both parties. If the Democrats were still in power the outcome most likely would have been the same… yes?

    The only difference, Republicans would have been laughing their derrières off using the cuts against them in 12′-

  3. admin- thanks for the Hillary video- I missed what she had to say, but got a chance to read the related article Jan kindly posted.
    _____________

    confloyd
    February 22nd, 2011 at 9:48 pm

    Great Article Admin; Kadaffy Duck…
    ________________

    When you try spell checking Gaddafi, it comes up “daffy” 🙂

  4. Clinton Deplores Killing of Americans by Somali Pirates

    February 22, 2011

    Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Tuesday deplored the killing by Somali pirates of four Americans whose yacht was hijacked off the Somalia coast late last week. U.S. officials say the ultimate answer to the piracy problem lies in restoring security in Somalia.

    Obama administration officials are urging a tougher international response to Horn-of-Africa piracy in the wake of the killings, but acknowledge that the key to the problem is restoring security and governance on the Somali mainland.

    U.S. naval forces were trailing the hijacked American yacht, the Quest, Tuesday and trying to negotiate with the hostage-takers when Navy officials said a rocket propelled grenade was fired at a U.S. vessel and shots were heard on board.

    U.S. Special Forces seized control of the hijacked yacht and found that all four hostages had been shot by the pirates and later died of their wounds.

    The boarding party killed two pirates and detained more than a dozen others in the first known case of Americans being killed by pirate gangs operating off Somalia.

    At a press event with Latvian Foreign Minister Girts Valdis Kristovskis, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the United States will honor the memory of the four slain Americans by strengthening the international anti-piracy effort.

    “This deplorable act by the pirates that stalk vessels in the waters off of Somalia firmly underscores the need for the international community to act more decisively together. We’ve got to have a more effective approach to maintaining security on the seas, in the ocean lanes that are so essential to commerce and travel,” she said.

    Clinton said members of the international community concerned about piracy and stability in Somalia should provide material, financial and logistical support to the African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia, AMISOM.

    The 8,000-member force, consisting mainly of troops from Uganda and Burundi, has been fighting Islamist al-Shahab militiamen trying since 2007 to oust Somalia’s U.N.-backed Transitional Federal Governnment or TFG.

    Coastal pirates have increased attacks in recent years despite an international flotilla of warships patrolling the region. The European Union says pirates are currently holding at least 32 vessels and nearly 700 hostages.

    The State Department said the U.S. Justice Department will be consulted on the status of the pirates captured by U.S. forces Tuesday, who could be handed over to a Kenyan court or face justice in the United States.

    Last week’s hijacking of the American yacht came only two days after a Somali pirate was sentenced to 33 years in prison by a New York court for his role in the 2009 hijacking of a U.S. merchant ship, the Maersk Alabama.

    http://www.voanews.com/english/news/usa/Clinton-Deplores-Killing-of-Americans-by-Somali-Pirates-116693679.html

  5. Well this is what my Mom (yellow dog union member) used to say about the republicans (rethugs/retards),”A pick and a shovel and a dollar a day” that’s a republican….

    Mrs. Smith….that’s your universal wage….my Mom was right again…if she wasn’t already dead…she’d be keeling over now for sure….but I would love to see her scream at the TV one more time….LOL! She loved Bill Clinton….she did not care one thing about his BJ…she said the republicans set him up for that….and they did…they are ruthless money mongers who care nothing but for the Almighty Dollar/Gold or whatever currency they want to use now!

    Guess who was the orginal conspirative theorist??? Hillary Clinton….she said, “there is a VAST right wing conspiracy”, she was right too! Guess what Obama is part of it!!!

    Rahm won Chi-town….now WHAT???

  6. admin
    February 22nd, 2011 at 9:39 pm

    admin- what the heck is that?

    Jill Dougherty from the State Dept is now
    delivering statements from John Kerry on what
    action the US should be taking on Libya?

    No Fly zone over Libya-?

  7. WTH, is John Kerry doing answering the 3am phone call…what’s up with Hillary…did they fire and she refuses to leave or what???

  8. I have always thought that the only way Barry would not run in 2012 is if he got a more interesting, well paying position where he didn’t have to work.

    ———
    Then Admin came up with the answer:

    Obama can then rule Libya and Michelle can wear all the garish costumes previously worn by the madman of the Mideast. That would be a win/win for the world.

    ———–

    They could even gift him with a Styrofoam castle and a brass crown. A throne made of toadstools and a fake birth document claiming he is the direct decedent of Zeus.

    Oh that would solve our problems, getting him the Hell outta Dodge and put Hillary back in the White House.

  9. Rahm won Chi-town….now WHAT???
    ____________________

    Wait and See…
    _____________________

    I’m getting the feeling all HELL is breaking loose behind closed doors in the State Dept. The SOBs are undercutting Hillary left and right. I hope she has her sophisticated ears on, as my Gran used to say, and she is already suited up in her Kevlar vest.

  10. Have no fear Mrs. S. – Hillary has been dodging bullets most of her adult life. She isn’t a superhero for nothin’. 😉

  11. How can he announce more threats?….he’s already killed hundreds and they still keep coming…there’s NO birth control in those countries….those rulers should have insisted on it…there wouldn’t be so many protestors out to kill them…..

  12. Keeps…well I thought the umbrella man has been playing for keeps all along…you’d think he’d get tired of killing people!

  13. Rahm’s win ticked off Obama and the Chicago Combine.

    They are moving doubly fast now, moving on Hillary forcing her hand.

  14. there’s NO birth control in those countries….those rulers should have insisted on it…there wouldn’t be so many protestors out to kill them…..
    *********
    Libya’s population was ~1 million in 1950; 6+ million today and in 15 years 8.5 million. There must be something with fundamentalist religion and birth control, the Rethugs are defunding PP and many believe that BC is murder.

    OT…and hopefully Moon….’s friends will benefit:

    “4:51am The first major evacuation vessel sponsored by the US Government is set to evacuate American citizens from Libya. Following is a Warden message by the American embassy in Tripoli:

    A US Government chartered ferry will depart Tripoli from the As-shahab Port in central Tripoli, located on the sea road across from the Radisson Blu Mahari Hotel, for Valletta, Malta on Wednesday, February 23. Processing of passengers will begin promptly at 10:00am local time. US citizen travelers wishing to depart should proceed as soon as possible after 9:00am to the pier and arrive no later than 10:00am US citizens will be processed on a first-come, first-served basis, with priority given to persons with medical emergencies or severe medical conditions. The ferry will depart no later than 3:00pm. Travelers should bring valid travel documents and any necessary medications.”

    http://blogs.aljazeera.net/africa/2011/02/22/live-blog-libya-feb-23

  15. Mrs. Smith
    February 22nd, 2011 at 9:17 pm
    If the WI Unionists walk away, we will bearing witness to total destruction and the fall of the American/Roman Empire.

    Soros will have Won-
    **********

    The Unions have only themselves to blame. They have been corrupt greedy and have lost the vision of original intent. They have been on the downward spiral since the 60’s.

  16. gonzotx,
    I could care less about the union or its thugs, what I care about and what everyone here cares about is the ability to have “collective bargaining”…our foremothers and forefathers not too long ago fought for that right….and it should be honored!

  17. Four men slashed teacher’s face and left him with fractured skull ‘for teaching other religions to Muslim girls’

    By Daily Mail Reporter
    2-22-11 10:27 am

    Four men launched a horrific attack on a teacher in which they slashed his face and left him with a fractured skull because they did not approve of him teaching religion to Muslim girls.

    Akmol Hussein, 26, Sheikh Rashid, 27, Azad Hussain, 25, and Simon Alam, 19, attacked Gary Smith with a Stanley knife, an iron rod and a block of cement.

    Mr Smith, who is head of religious education at Central Foundation Girls’ School in Bow, east London, also suffered a fractured skull.

    The four now face a jail sentence.

    Detectives made secret recordings of the gang’s plot to attack Mr Smith prior to the brutal assault.

    The covert audio probe captured the gang condemning Mr Smith for ‘teaching other religions to our sisters’, the court heard.

    The RE teacher was targeted as he made his way on foot along Burdett Road in nearby Mile End on July 12 last year, Snaresbrook Crown Court was told.

    Prosecutor Sarah Whitehouse told the court: ‘The evidence from what was said on the probe points overwhelmingly to a religious motive for this attack.’

    It is believed the gang had made two earlier attempts to get at the teacher.

    They were due to stand trial for the attack at Snaresbrook Crown Court but pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1359160/4-men-slashed-teachers-face-teaching-religions-Muslim-girls.html

  18. There’s a real patten going on here, the same folks that wanted Meg Whitman to win in my state are the same folks that believe the Rethug spin that all unions should be broken

    =================

    Not necessarily! Quite a few people supported Whitman because they wanted to punish all Democrats, or because they disliked the Democratic candidate, etc etc. It may be the same in WI.

  19. Mrs. Smith, under Sharia would this attack be acceptable and not punishable? Didn’t I read yesterday or earlier that some states in the USA are trying to enact laws against having Sharia Law but some law groups are fighting for the right for it?

  20. I think there is more to this union busting play by rethugs than just trying to make their budgets.

    The Republicans have been trying to defund public education for years, ‘school voucher’ ring a bell? By taking away collective bargaining it will weaken teachers and public schools.

    As far as the Dims running away from a vote, in a way they are practicing their own collective bargaining…giving folks in other states a heads up on what is coming down the pike.

    To me, the real problem is with candidates getting money from unions, companies and big donors. The Dems got the union money, (not in the best way for the workers), but that is what Republican’s are out to destroy.

    The Republicans can all got to Hell as far as I am concerned.

  21. Not necessarily! Quite a few people supported Whitman because they wanted to punish all Democrats, or because they disliked the Democratic candidate, etc etc. It may be the same in WI.
    ————
    I guess that works for people that don’t have to live in that state when the ax will fall on their necks.

  22. confloyd
    February 22nd, 2011 at 11:31 pm
    gonzotx,
    I could care less about the union or its thugs, what I care about and what everyone here cares about is the ability to have “collective bargaining”…our foremothers and forefathers not too long ago fought for that right….and it should be honored!
    *******

    Why did pro-Union President FDR OPPOSE collective bargaining agreements with PUBLIC SECTOR workers?
    “The process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service,” Roosevelt wrote in 1937!

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/article…

    “The process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service,” Roosevelt wrote in 1937 to the National Federation of Federal Employees. Yes, public workers may demand fair treatment, wrote Roosevelt. But, he wrote, “I want to emphasize my conviction that militant tactics have no place” in the public sector. “A strike of public employees manifests nothing less than an intent on their part to prevent or obstruct the operations of Government.”

  23. #
    Southern Born
    February 22nd, 2011 at 11:44 pm

    Mrs. Smith, under Sharia would this attack be acceptable and not punishable?
    ______________________

    The attack is an approved punishment under Sharia Law.
    __________________

    Didn’t I read yesterday or earlier that some states in the USA are trying to enact laws against having Sharia Law but some law groups are fighting for the right for it?
    _______________

    Yes- and I posted an article re: The American Bar Assn (ABA)

    “The American Bar Association (ABA) has decided to undertake the fight for Sharia law. The ABA’s Executive Counsel “has organized a Task Force to review the legislation of 14 states — Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nebraska, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Wyoming — in which anti-Sharia legislation has been introduced.”

    http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/02/the_abas_jihad.html
    __________________

    I swear, the world is going Mad-

  24. As far as the Dims running away from a vote, in a way they are practicing their own collective bargaining…giving folks in other states a heads up on what is coming down the pike.

    ===================

    Right, and bravo! It’s just like going on strike and picketing. Walk out of the workplace (ie the WI statehouse) and draw attention awat from those who remain (ie get the news to focus on the ‘flight’ and the demonstrations) and publicize your grievances.

  25. Mrs. Smith:
    “The American Bar Association (ABA) has decided to undertake the fight for Sharia law. The ABA’s Executive Counsel “has organized a Task Force to review the legislation of 14 states — Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nebraska, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Wyoming — in which anti-Sharia legislation has been introduced.”
    http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/02/the_abas_jihad.html
    __________________

    I swear, the world is going Mad-

    ******************************************************

    So why attack/fight the USA if you can get some of the American citizens to do it for you.

  26. Just a side note. The attack on a male teacher, (oh, dear, his name is Mr. Smith, no relation of course.) happened last July in England. The case was ready for trial but the accused men plead guilty.

  27. There was a time the WI schools were the finest in the land. I still think the destruction of the family unit is the culprit. This data can’t be helping the teachers in WI.
    *********

    Two-Thirds of Wisconsin Public-School 8th Graders Can’t Read Proficiently—Despite Highest Per Pupil Spending in Midwest

    Tuesday, February 22, 2011
    By Terence P. Jeffrey

    Students from Appleton West High School protest a proposal by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker that would make teachers pay a fraction of their own pension and health-insurance costs. (AP Photo/Sharon Cekada)
    (CNSNews.com) – Two-thirds of the eighth graders in Wisconsin public schools cannot read proficiently according to the U.S. Department of Education, despite the fact that Wisconsin spends more per pupil in its public schools than any other state in the Midwest.
    In the National Assessment of Educational Progress tests administered by the U.S. Department of Education in 2009—the latest year available—only 32 percent of Wisconsin public-school eighth graders earned a “proficient” rating while another 2 percent earned an “advanced” rating. The other 66 percent of Wisconsin public-school eighth graders earned ratings below “proficient,” including 44 percent who earned a rating of “basic” and 22 percent who earned a rating of “below basic.”

    The test also showed that the reading abilities of Wisconsin public-school eighth graders had not improved at all between 1998 and 2009 despite a significant inflation-adjusted increase in the amount of money Wisconsin public schools spent per pupil each year.
    In 1998, according to the U.S. Department of Education, Wisconsin public school eighth graders scored an average of 266 out of 500 on the NAEP reading test. In 2009, Wisconsin public school eighth graders once again scored an average of 266 out of 500 on the NAEP reading test. Meanwhile, Wisconsin public schools increased their per pupil expenditures from $4,956 per pupil in 1998 to 10,791 per pupil in 2008. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics inflation calculator the $4,956 Wisconsin spent per pupil in 1998 dollars equaled $6,546 in 2008 dollars. That means that from 1998 to 2008, Wisconsin public schools increased their per pupil spending by $4,245 in real terms yet did not add a single point to the reading scores of their eighth graders and still could lift only one-third of their eighth graders to at least a “proficient” level in reading.
    The $10,791 that Wisconsin spent per pupil in its public elementary and secondary schools in fiscal year 2008 was more than any other state in the Midwest.
    Neighboring Illinois spent $10,353 per student in 2008, Minnesota spent $10,048 per student; Iowa spent $9,520 per student. Among Midwest states, Nebraska was second to Wisconsin in per pupil spending in its public schools, spending $10,565 per student.
    Of these nearby states, only Minnesota did slightly better teaching reading to its public school students. In 2009, 39 percent of eighth graders in Minnesota public schools earned a rating of “proficient” or better in reading, and the average eighth grade reading score in the state was 270 out of 500.
    In Illinois, only 32 percent of eighth graders earned a rating of “proficient” or better in reading, and the average eighth grade reading score was 265 out of 500. In Iowa, only 32 percent of eighth graders earned a rating of “proficient” or better in reading, and the average reading score was 265 out of 500. In Nebraska, only 35 percent of eighth graders earned a rating of “proficient” or better in their public schools, and the average reading score was 267 out of 500.
    Nationwide, only 30 percent of public school eighth graders earned a rating of “proficient” or better in reading, and the average reading score on the NAEP test was 262 out of 500.
    The National Assessment of Educational Progress explains its student rating system as follows: “Basic denotes partial mastery of prerequisite knowledge and skills that are fundamental for proficient work at each grade. Proficient represents solid academic performance. Students reaching this level have demonstrated competency over challenging subject matter. Advanced represents superior performance.”
    In other words, despite the $10,791 that taxpayers were paying to educate students in Wisconsin public schools, two-thirds of eighth graders in those schools showed at best only a “partial mastery of prerequisite knowledge and skills that are fundamental for proficient work” at that grade level.
    In fiscal 2008, the federal government provided $669.6 million in subsidies to the public schools in Wisconsin.
    Like

  28. About the photos of graduating classes in Cairo from 1950 till now (which BCL kindly found at Uppity’s). As a commentator at Uppity’s mentioned, the recent classes had more headscarves — but also many more women.

    A count (if anyone had the magnifying glass and the energy) might show the same number of bareheaded women — plus a larger number with scarves.

    So this could be evidence for several different theories. The simplest might be, that in 1959 the scarf-wearers stayed home and only the bareheaded went to college — but now they are ALL going to college.

  29. Southern Born
    February 23rd, 2011 at 12:13 am

    I believe the ABA is interested in investigating if by passing the legislation an infringement on their Civil Rights had occurred and are considering defending their Rights to enforce Sharia Law.

  30. Mrs. Smith, so if the ABA finds that Sharia Law is within their Civil Rights and teachers and others are attacked brutally here in the USA, what happens? What about the Civil Rights of those attacked under Sharia Law?

  31. Quite a few people supported Whitman because they wanted to punish all Democrats, or because they disliked the Democratic candidate, etc etc. It may be the same in WI.
    ————
    I guess that works for people that don’t have to live in that state when the ax will fall on their necks.

    ================

    Well, supporting Scott Brown works for people who wanted to punish Coakley but don’t need the programs that Brown’s ax will fall on.

  32. Another reason for Walker to want to push his bill through without debate or discussion.


    16.896 Sale or contractual operation of state−owned heating, cooling, and power plants. (1) Notwithstanding ss. 13.48 (14) (am) and 16.705 (1), the department may sell any state−owned heating, cooling, and power plant or may contract with a private entity for the operation of any such plant, with or without solicitation of bids, for any amount that the department determines to be in the best interest of the state. Notwithstanding ss. 196.49 and 196.80, no approval or certification of the public service commission is necessary for a public utility to purchase, or contract for the operation of, such a plant, and any such purchase is considered to be in the public interest and to comply with the criteria for certification of a project under s. 196.49 (3) (b).

    http://www.correntewire.com/wisconsin_its_not_just_union_busting

  33. The PIN is mightier than the sword?

    MADISON, Wis. — Someone in Egypt has been paying attention to what’s happening in Madison and wanted to send a message of solidarity from across the globe — so they ordered a pizza.

    It might seem like a small gesture, but it’s overwhelming to the staff at Ian’s on State Street — a campus staple mere blocks from the Capitol — where in the last few days, they’ve fielded calls from concerned citizens of 14 countries, and all 50 states and the District of Columbia looking to donate money to provide free pizza to the Wisconsinites who have congregated here.

    Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0211/49888.html#ixzz1ElFNs0QH

    Plus which, the latest I heard, Ian’s was over-loaded so they’d started referring callers to other pizza parlors, posting phone numbers and everything.

  34. For the conspiracy fans:
    Why is no one talking about the role of ALEC in all of this? The industry/corporate-funded group which pushes its boilerplate legislation on the state level? I mean, it’s no coincidence so many states are tackling the SAME legislation right now. … And by the way, anyone wanting to know about ALEC’s agenda need just look at their “Employment Policy and Regulatory Reforms” legislation. Some if it quite radical. Again, you used to be able to click on these and read the actual legislation. Now it’s protected, but just looking at the titles gives you an idea.

  35. Mrs. Smith – why are you sounding such alarm about Hillary now being in definite danger? What are you seeing? You’re worrying me!

  36. Union Fails Pension Math: Part Time-Teacher Set to Earn More in Retirement than She Did While Employed
    by Ben Everard

    Shortly after the Green Bay Packers turned the nation’s attention to the Midwestern state, Wisconsin once again has garnered the nation’s attention. At stake this time is not a trophy, but a prized retirement package promised to public employees. Throngs of protesters have taken to Madison, Wisconsin to either show their support or disdain for Governor Scott Walker’s plan to require public employees to pay 5.8 percent (the national average is roughly 12 percent) of their salary as a contribution to their pension.

    The looming issue of funding public pensions is not unique to Wisconsin. Governor Walker’s stand, however, has focused the nation’s attention largely because he is the first Republican leader to propose legitimate legislation designed to address the problem head on. The debate in Wisconsin is a precursor to one that will be seen New York, California, Illinois, and dozens of other states. Unfunded liabilities stemming from decades of generous retirement packages for public employees has finally reached the breaking point. Without reform, state fiscal collapse is inevitable. Often lost in the debate is a simple explanation of what exactly the problem is with the system today. Fortunately, a pertinent example helps shed light on the financial precariousness of the situation in Wisconsin, and more importantly, the nation at large.
    My mother worked as a public employee when she was a teacher’s aide in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. She was employed by the state for five years, from 1981-1986. However, she worked only part-time, so was never credited for a full year of employment by the state for each year she worked. Instead, she received only partial credit each year. Fortunately for her, Wisconsin and two other states (Minnesota and South Dakota) allow for full vesting for public teachers after only three years of employment. Using a deduction for her part-time status, Wisconsin determined her creditable service amounted to 3.07 years. Had she worked three weeks less during her last year, she would be entitled to nothing. As luck would have it, she fully vested, and is entitled to receive a monthly check from the state of Wisconsin for the rest of her life.
    Like millions of fellow baby boomers, she turns 55 this year. And in Wisconsin, one can elect to draw benefits at age 55. If she retires this year and elects to take her pension, she would receive a check, once a month, for $230. She receives this check for the rest of her life, and, if she predeceases my father, he is entitled to cash the check for the rest of his life.
    A meager $230 a month may not sound like much—until you consider the salary she earned when she was employed, and how long she will likely draw her pension. The average life expectancy for women in the United States is roughly 78 years. Assuming my mother has an average life span, she will collect 276 separate checks from the state of Wisconsin for her five years of part-time service. These checks, without adjusting for inflation, amount to $63,480. Of course, in reality, the checks are adjusted upward annually for inflation, so her accumulated payout will be well north of $63,480.
    To put things into perspective, consider the salary she drew when she was actually employed. In her final year, she made $7,650. Wisconsin’s pension formula averages the highest three years’ salary, which for her amounted to $7,072 and $6,191. Over the course of her career as a salaried part-time teacher’s aide, she made approximately $35,000.
    Thus, for five years of part time service in which she was paid a cumulative total of less than $35,000, she will collect nearly twice that if she has an average life span. She will be paid more money to be retired than she was ever paid by the state of Wisconsin when she was actually employed.
    Let us not forget the other tiny detail—she has not lived in Wisconsin for over a quarter century, meaning she has not paid a dime to Wisconsin’s tax system in over 25 years. Yet, she is entitled to tens of thousands of dollars in pension benefits for her five years of part-time employment as a teacher’s aide.
    Her scenario is just the beginning. It represents a tiny sliver of the enormity of the looming financial disaster. Substitute my mother’s modest salary with a superintendent of a school district, for example, who was paid over $100,000 per year, and the gravity of the situation is put into proper perspective.
    Ultimately, this means the taxpayers of Wisconsin will be paying, not for services, but for retirees. If the state has not woken up to this reality yet, it will. When a 911 call goes unanswered due to lack of emergency personnel on the streets, there will be calls for reform. When public schools cram 40 students into each classroom for a below-average education in an underfunded school district, there will be calls for reform. When checks are no longer issued, there will be calls for reform.
    Fortunately, there already are calls for reform. They come from Governor Scott Walker in Madison, Wisconsin. He will not change existing benefits for present retirees. But he is attempting to tackle a ticking time bomb before it explodes. Let us, in the words of our free-spending President, hope, that the Democrats in the Wisconsin Senate, who have fled the state to avoid voting on the measure, eventually get the message. They are paid to cast votes. It is time they earn their paycheck. From what I hear, the pay can be quite generous in Wisconsin.

  37. American Thinker…something we have of course been talking about, the way home…
    ************
    February 21, 2011
    Tea Party Democrats
    By Mark W. Hendrickson

    I have good news and bad news: The good news is that the political ideals and values of some prominent Democrats are so right-wing that they make most Tea Party leaders seem like liberals in comparison. The bad news is that all those right-wing Democrats belong to an earlier century.

    On Presidents Day, 2011, as we reflect on past presidents and chafe under the destructive policies of the incumbent, it might be hard for young Americans to realize that there have been Democratic presidents whose core beliefs included the inviolability of individual rights, the sanctity of our constitution, and the conviction that the federal government should protect citizens’ property rather than redistribute it. In fact, though, those beliefs were the animating principles of the Democratic Party in the 1800s.

    Today, it is virtually impossible to picture Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, or Grover Cleveland — all two-term Democratic presidents in the 19th century — being welcome in the modern Democratic Party or wanting to be associated with it. Today’s Democrats — Obama, Pelosi, Reid, et al. — haven’t modified the principles of those early Democratic presidents; rather, they have inverted, repudiated, and abandoned them.

    For example, one of the primary tenets of Jeffersonian Democrats was their belief in small, limited government. In 1824, Jefferson wrote, “I think, myself, that we have more machinery of government than is necessary, too many parasites living on the labor of the industrious.” If the Sage of Monticello felt that way in 1824, imagine how he would feel today!

    Distrusting Big Government, early Democrats naturally detested government debt. Jefferson believed that debt leads to taxation, wretchedness, oppression, and servitude. He reduced the $83 million federal debt he inherited by over one-third during his presidency, despite incurring the expenses of the Louisiana Purchase and the conflict with the Barbary pirates. In 1824, Jackson declared government debt a “national curse.” Old Hickory remains the only president to have paid the federal debt down to zero. Today, by contrast, Obama presides over a $1.6 trillion deficit and a $14 trillion debt that will double by 2021 if Obama gets his way.

    Nineteenthy Century Democrats would have regarded today’s Democrats’ penchant for social engineering as un-American. They would have rebelled against the injustice of redistributing wealth in the cynical name of “social justice” in pursuit of socialistic egalitarianism. To achieve this goal, Democrats (with considerable collaboration from all too many Republicans) have done their best to replace the principle of an impartial and uniform rule of law with its antithesis-a transfer society comprised on a complex system of privileges. They have rejected the traditional American sense of justice as so beautifully articulated by Andrew Jackson:

    Distinctions in society will always exist under every just government. Equality of talents, of education, or of wealth cannot be produced by human institutions. In the full enjoyment of the gifts of Heaven and the fruits of superior industry, economy, and virtue, every man is equally entitled to protection by law; but when the laws undertake to add to these natural and just advantages artificial distinctions, to grant titles, gratuities and exclusive privileges, to make the rich richer and the potent more powerful, the humble members of society-the farmers, mechanics and laborers-who have neither the time nor the means of securing like favors to themselves, have a right to complain of the injustice of their government.

    Rather than stamp out what Frederic Bastiat termed “legalized plunder” — privileges for the wealthy and the politically well-connected — recent generations of Democrats have democratized plunder. They have granted privileges and bestowed trillions to labor unions, senior citizens, racial minorities, low-income individuals, etc. As usual, two moral wrongs don’t make a right, but in this case, they have led us to the brink of national bankruptcy.

    Jefferson, Jackson, and Cleveland were strict constitutionalists. Jefferson warned against making our written constitution “a white [blank] paper by construction [i.e., sophistic, spurious, unscrupulous interpretation].”

    Jackson’s creed was: “Democrats …favor limited state and national governments according to a strict reading of the state and federal constitutions.” (Part of what was elided from the foregoing quote was Jackson’s opposition to a national bank — a position emphatically shared by Jefferson. Today’s Democrats don’t even want the modern incarnation of a national bank, the Federal Reserve System, to be audited, much less abolished.) Cleveland, believing that the Constitution meant precisely what it said in plain English, resisted a huge expansion of government by vetoing a record number of spending bills. As he put it in one veto message, “I can find no warrant for such an appropriation in the Constitution…Though the people support the Government, the Government should not support the people.”

    It is plain that Jeffersonian Democrats are anathema to Obama and his progressive cohorts today. “Progressive” Democrats live by the obnoxious and unconstitutional nostrum that “the government” should support the people (meaning in practice that government takes from some to give to others, namely, their political allies). Contemporary Democrats also believe that government can bestow additional rights on citizens, such as the right to cheap health care. They have lost sight of the traditional American belief, so clearly stated by another Democratic president from an earlier generation, John F. Kennedy, “that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state but from the hand of God.”

    Today’s Democratic party is not your grandfather’s party. Indeed, it may well be that the most profound political transformation in our country’s history has been the one that has happened within the Democratic Party. Today’s “progressive” Democrats are practically the polar opposite of their Jeffersonian forebears. There is actually a silver lining in this sad report: It means that it’s almost impossible for Democrats to migrate farther away from our country’s foundational principles, and raises the possibility that the next significant ideological shift in the Democratic Party will, of necessity, be in the direction back toward their party’s (and our republic’s) founders.

    That day cannot come soon enough.

  38. Apologies for my hasty drive-bys (am working hard to hold Obama accountable, and it’s a time-consuming endeavor). This may be a repeat, but I figure twice is better than never:

    Public unions force taxpayers to fund Democrats | Michael Barone | Politics | Washington Examiner
    Everyone has priorities. During the past week Barack Obama has found no time to condemn the attacks that Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi has launched on the Libyan people. But he did find time to be interviewed by a Wisconsin television station and weigh in on the dispute between Republican Gov. Scott Walker and the state’s public employee unions. Walker was staging “an assault on unions,” he said, and added that “public employee unions make enormous contributions to our states and our citizens.”

    Enormous contributions, yes — to the Democratic Party and the Obama campaign. Unions, most of whose members are public employees, gave Democrats some $400 million in the 2008 election cycle. The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, the biggest public employee union, gave Democrats $90 million in the 2010 cycle. Follow the money, Washington reporters like to say. The money in this case comes from taxpayers, present and future, who are the source of every penny of dues paid to public employee unions, who in turn spend much of that money on politics, almost all of it for Democrats. In effect, public employee unions are a mechanism by which every taxpayer is forced to fund the Democratic Party. So, just as the president complained in his 2010 State of the Union address about a Supreme Court decision that he feared would increase the flow of money to Republicans, he also found time to complain about a proposed state law that could reduce the flow of money to Democrats.
    http://washingtonexaminer.com/politics/2011/02/public-unions-force-taxpayers-fund-democrats

    PS: TV I saw last evening and this AM does not mention BO’s trip to Ohio. 🙂

  39. First known foreigner.

    FLASH – Turkish worker in Libya shot dead near Tripoli – Turkish TV

    Now I am getting really worried.

  40. Good morning ALL Hillary supporters: From this fay on I will refer to her as Madam President.The dreams of BO becoming another black dictator are rapidly fading as he watches his idols Mubarak Gaddafi and a growing list of other wealthy strongmen being kicked out of their honey pots as their populance have had enough of their brutal rule.BO has fast learned that he has none of the traits of a dictator.He loves hoops trips good food feleprompters and ambitious underlings to keep him above the turmoil that he has caused.Hillary is our leader now ready to face any and all problems head on.that 3 am phode call is now on her red phone at her side.BO aka emperor bones and his luxury loving frau are not to be disturbed.
    Amazing how many of our elected gravy-trainers are rushing to the exit gates of their milk and honey
    fountains of loot.
    President Hillary we the people of America have had enough of the DC crime scene and you have our support and we willkeep you safe.You and Bill are destined to be the team that saves our great Democracy
    and our World from evil would be kings. Our marching orders are spelled out for us.

    DUMP BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA DRAFT HILLARY CLEAN OUT DC and REVOLT IF WE MUST ABM90

  41. Walker blackmailing state employees holding them hostage to legislative passage stripping Unions of their bargaining rights. Unpresedented support coming from a fed up constituency consisting of a diverse cross-section of union supported workers who will lose big time if Walker succeeds.
    _________________________________

    Wisconsin lawmakers take up bill to cripple unions

    * Thousands protest anti-union bill in Wisconsin

    Supporters join a candlelight vigil in front of the state Capitol to express sympathy with union members in Wisconsin, Sacramento, Calif

    MADISON, Wis. – With their Senate colleagues still in hiding, Democrats in the Wisconsin Assembly began introducing a barrage of 100 amendments Tuesday to try to stymie the Republican governor’s plan to strip unionized public employees of most of their bargaining rights.

    Both houses of the GOP-controlled Legislature convened shortly before noon amid noisy protests outside the state Capitol that began more than a week ago in an epic showdown that is being watched nervously by organized labor across the country.

    The Senate was unable to take up the union measure because its 14 Democrats skipped town last week, denying the chamber a quorum. But Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald pledged that his chamber would approve the bill this week, despite the blizzard of Democratic amendments.

    Turning up the pressure on the Democrats, Gov. Scott Walker warned that state employees could start receiving layoff notices as early as next week if the bill isn’t passed soon. The layoffs couldn’t take effect immediately — existing union contracts could forestall them for weeks or months — and Walker wouldn’t say which jobs he would go after first.

    “Hopefully we don’t get to that point,” the governor said in a statement.

    Borrowing the strategy pioneered by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Walker planned to take his case straight to the voters Tuesday evening with a fireside chat. In excerpts released in advance by Walker’s office, the governor said his bill is about balancing the budget now and into the future and nothing else. He commended Wisconsin for “showing the rest of the country how to have a passionate yet civil debate about our finances.”

    (a load of malarkey!)

    Walker also praised public employees — thousands of whom have been calling for his resignation for more than a week — saying he has a “great respect for those who have chosen a career in government.”

    While Wisconsin remained the main front in the national debate over union rights, similar battles were taking shape in other states. In Indiana, House Democrats walked out of the Statehouse on Tuesday, blocking a GOP-backed bill against mandatory union dues. Only three of the 40 Democratic members of the chamber were present, depriving it of a quorum.

    A similar debate in Ohio drew thousands of union protesters Tuesday, prompting officials there to lock the doors to the Statehouse.

    In Wisconsin, if lawmakers take no action on the union bill by the end of the week, the state will not be able to refinance debt that Walker had counted on for $165 million worth of savings under the legislation. The governor warned that not doing that would force even deeper cuts and possibly lead to 1,500 layoffs by July.

    Republican leaders in both the Senate and Assembly said they have the votes to pass the bill.

    Fitzgerald said the bill was a key part of the Republican agenda to cut government spending that won the GOP majorities in the Legislature in November.

    “When you talk about a compromise, no. We’re going to make a reform,” the Assembly speaker said.

    Debate began in the Assembly with the Democrats introducing amendments that would do such things as restore public employees’ right to strike and submit the bill to a referendum before it could take effect. Given the number of amendments Democrats were proposing, an actual vote on the measure may not happen until Wednesday or later.

    “It’s going to be a long day,” Democratic Minority Leader Peter Barca said at the start of debate. “Tempers are going to flare.”

    He was right. Two Democrats lashed out at Republican lawmakers and aides for laughing at them during the debate.

    “This is not a game! We’re dealing with people’s lives! This isn’t funny!” Rep. Andy Jorgensen shouted in the chamber, his face red. “I haven’t laughed in a long time, especially not on a day like this!”

    Rep. Cory Mason, a former organizer for the American Federation of Teachers, said Wisconsin has enjoyed more than 50 years of labor peace between state and local public employees and their bosses after passing collective bargaining rights in 1959.

    “What the governor is proposing and what the majority is proposing today is to break that labor peace,” he said.

    The roar of protesters in the Capitol rotunda, many of whom were banging on drums and chanting through megaphones, could be heard while both the Senate and Assembly met.

    The Wisconsin bill would force state and local public workers to contribute more toward their pensions and health care and would strip them of the right to negotiate benefits and working conditions. They would largely be limited to negotiating pay raises no greater than the inflation rate.

    (better check on which index they plan on using for the inflation rate)

    The proposal, designed to help Wisconsin plug a projected $3.6 billion hole in the budget, has led to eight straight days of monumental protests that grew as large as 68,000 people on Saturday.

    The Senate was stymied for a second time in its attempts to take up the bill after none of the 14 Democrats who skipped town on Thursday showed up. Under Senate rules, 20 lawmakers must be present to take up a budget bill. There are only 19 Republicans.

    Unable to act on Walker’s proposal, the remaining Republicans instead took up some non-controversial measures, voting to extend tax breaks to dairy farmers and unanimously commending the Green Bay Packers on winning the Super Bowl.

    Unlike last Thursday, when the Senate galleries were filled with protesters who disrupted action by shouting, only about a dozen people showed up under heavier security to watch the action on Tuesday.

    In the Assembly, the gallery was packed with hundreds of spectators who watched the debate without causing any disruption. Democrats wore orange shirts to show solidarity with protesters that read, “Fighting for working families.” Thousands more people watched the debate on TV monitors inside the rotunda.

    Walker and Republican leaders have repeatedly called on the Senate Democrats, who fled to Illinois, to return and get back to work. Democrats have said they won’t come back until Walker is willing to negotiate.

    “We’d love to come back today,” said Sen. Jon Erpenbach. “We could be up there this afternoon and pass this if he would agree to removing the language that has absolutely nothing to do with balancing the budget.”

    Packers star Charles Woodson and two other players, along with five former team members, have come out against the bill.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110222/ap_on_re_us/us_wisconsin_budget_unions

  42. Canada, U.S. agree to use each other’s troops in civil emergencies

    Canada and the U.S. have signed an agreement that paves the way for the militaries from either nation to send troops across each other’s borders during an emergency, but some are questioning why the Harper government has kept silent on the deal.

    Neither the Canadian government nor the Canadian Forces announced the new agreement, which was signed Feb. 14 in Texas.

    The U.S. military’s Northern Command, however, publicized the agreement with a statement outlining how its top officer, Gen. Gene Renuart, and Canadian Lt.-Gen. Marc Dumais, head of Canada Command, signed the plan, which allows the military from one nation to support the armed forces of the other nation during a civil emergency.

    The new agreement has been greeted with suspicion by the left wing in Canada and the right wing in the U.S.

    The left-leaning Council of Canadians, which is campaigning against what it calls the increasing integration of the U.S. and Canadian militaries, is raising concerns about the deal.

    “It’s kind of a trend when it comes to issues of Canada-U.S. relations and contentious issues like military integration. We see that this government is reluctant to disclose information to Canadians that is readily available on American and Mexican websites,” said Stuart Trew, a researcher with the Council of Canadians.

    Trew said there is potential for the agreement to militarize civilian responses to emergency incidents. He noted that work is also underway for the two nations to put in place a joint plan to protect common infrastructure such as roadways and oil pipelines.

    “Are we going to see (U.S.) troops on our soil for minor potential threats to a pipeline or a road?” he asked.

    Trew also noted the U.S. military does not allow its soldiers to operate under foreign command so there are questions about who controls American forces if they are requested for service in Canada. “We don’t know the answers because the government doesn’t want to even announce the plan,” he said.

    But Canada Command spokesman Commander David Scanlon said it will be up to civilian authorities in both countries on whether military assistance is requested or even used.

    He said the agreement is “benign” and simply sets the stage for military-to-military co-operation if the governments approve.

    “But there’s no agreement to allow troops to come in,” he said. “It facilitates planning and co-ordination between the two militaries. That ‘allow’ peace is entirely up to the two governments.”

    If U.S. forces were to come into Canada they would be under tactical control of the Canadian Forces but still under the command of the U.S. military, Scanlon added.

    News of the deal, and the allegation it was kept secret in Canada, is already making the rounds on left-wing blogs and Internet sites as an example of the dangers of the growing integration between the two militaries.

    On right-wing blogs in the U.S. it is being used as evidence of a plan for a “North American union” where foreign troops, not bound by U.S. laws, could be used by the American federal government to override local authorities.

    “Co-operative militaries on Home Soil!” notes one website. “The next time your town has a ‘national emergency,’ don’t be surprised if Canadian soldiers respond. And remember — Canadian military aren’t bound by posse comitatus.”

    Posse comitatus is a U.S. law that prohibits the use of federal troops from conducting law enforcement duties on domestic soil unless approved by Congress.

    (Except GWBush by Executive fiat removed a governor’s authority to control their state’s NG and local law enforcement, redirecting a governor’s authority exclusively to the Federal government.)

    Scanlon said there was no intent to keep the agreement secret on the Canadian side of the border. He noted it will be reported on in the Canadian Forces newspaper next week and that publication will be put on the Internet.

    Scanlon said the actual agreement hasn’t been released to the public as that requires approval from both nations. That decision has not yet been taken, he added.

    http://www.canada.com/topics/news/story.html?id=403d90d6-7a61-41ac-8cef-902a1d14879d&k=14984

  43. moononpluto
    February 23rd, 2011 at 6:17 am

    Do you think the shooting of a Turkish worker was a fluke or do you think Turkey is on the brink of a revolt?

  44. #
    moononpluto
    February 23rd, 2011 at 9:20 am

    The Turkish worker was shot in Libya, not Turkey.
    ______________

    Sorry, for being punctuation challenged. I was asking two questions. I should have put a comma after fluke.

  45. Admin: another wonderful turn of a phrase–to flee or not to flee–a question Shakespeare never considered . . . But in the Age of Obama, retreat is not a retrograde maneuver, it is a legislative strategy of nuance and evasion. As in we have secreted ourselves out of harms way, into the safe haven of Illinois land of Obama and Capone, and we are using modern technology to fight the Republicans. Here is one example of what these faux leaders are doing scrumptiously, rather than entering the public arena, arguing their case . . . doing the job they were hired to do. They could play a role in shaping a solution–and then turn their guns on the banking elites who generated this crisis if you go back to the beginning, but no those banking elites have bought them out, so they betray their constituents. Nice . . .
    ——————————————
    DSCC Spam On Wisconsin
    Brownyns Harbor
    No Quarter

    I have no clue who Guy Cecil is. I saw this e-mail from him, whoever he is, and almost tossed it in Spam, but the Subject header was about Wisconsin, and I thought, “Well, it might be interesting.” So I clicked and began to read. It just so happens that I noticed the dscc.org in Cecil’s e-mail address. Only in the section below the e-mail does the DSCC (Democratic Senate Campaign Committee) announce itself. It turns out that this is an example of the underhanded way that the DSCC employs to send out their c-r-a-p — they send an e-mail without identifying themselves in the Subject Headeror even in the e-mail’s content. These sneaky bastards. And that is one of the nicer things I can say about them. From the get-go, the email is disingenuous, especially considering what the DNC/Organizing for America/Obama are doing in WI, and other states.

    ALL that said, read this and let me know what you’d tell this Cecil character if you could.

    ———- Forwarded message ———-
    From: Guy Cecil
    Date: Tue, Feb 22, 2011 at 10:07 AM
    Subject: Wisconsin update
    To: ——–

    Dear Bronwyn,

    Here’s the latest from Wisconsin: Democrats are continuing to stand up to Gov. Scott Walker and the radical Republican agenda, and people from all over are voicing their solidarity with Wisconsin’s teachers and other workers. But Walker is pushing back hard. The billionaire Koch brothers have even gotten involved – busing in tea party protesters.

    GUY CECIL’s E-MAIL CONTINUES:

    I wanted to make sure you had the chance to sign our petition.

    Click here to join the more than 47,000 people who are standing with Wisconsin’s workers. Budgets shouldn’t be balanced on the backs of people who teach our children and keep our communities safe.

    I’m inspired by what I’m watching in Wisconsin. Let’s make sure they know we’re in the fight, too.

    Guy Cecil

    ——————————————————-

    Paid for by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee,
    http://www.dscc.org, and not authorized by any candidate or
    candidate’s committee.

    ———————————————————–

  46. Muammar Gaddafi, Libya’s long-standing ruler, has reportedly lost control of more cities as anti-government protests continue to sweep the African nation despite his threat of a brutal crackdown.

    Protesters in Misrata said on Wednesday they had wrested the western city from government control. In a statement on the internet, army officers stationed in the city pledged “total support for the protesters”.

    Much of the country’s east also seemed to be in control of the protesters, and an Al Jazeera correspondent, reporting from the city of Tobruk, 140km from the Egyptian border, said there was no presence of security forces.

    “From what I’ve seen, I’d say the people of eastern Libya are the ones in control”, Hoda Abdel-Hamid, our correspondent, said.

    She said there were no officials manning the border when the Al Jazeera team crossed into Libya.

    ‘People in charge’

    “All along the border, we didn’t see one policeman, we didn’t see one soldier and people here told us they [security forces] have all fled or are in hiding and that the people are now in charge, meaning all the way from the border, Tobruk, and then all the way up to Benghazi.

  47. Told ya

    WH worried about potential hostage crisis in Libya?

    http://hotair.com/archives/2011/02/23/wh-worried-about-potential-hostage-crisis-in-libya/

    Many have noted the reluctance of the Obama administration to speak out against the Moammar Gaddafi regime in Libya as its security forces attack rebels in the streets of Tripoli and Benghazi. By this time in the Egypt unrest, Obama had already demanded a “transition” from power for US ally Hosni Mubarak and had his press secretary emphasize that Obama meant “immediately.” Libya’s dictatorship has been uniformly hostile to the US, and Obama’s silence on Gaddafi’s position seems rather strange in comparison.

    The Washington Post and McClatchy both offer one possible reason why the US has hedged its formal statements:

    As of Tuesday, the State Department had been unable to get Libya’s permission to fly American citizens out of the country, officials said, prompting the U.S. government to temper its response to the Libyan crackdown.

    State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said Libyan officials had promised over the weekend to support U.S. efforts to evacuate Americans but that the necessary permits for charter flights hadn’t been granted.

    “What we can’t figure out is whether there’s just chaos at the airport, which is entirely possible, or whether the Libyans are not cooperating,” Crowley said in an interview.

    With air evacuations seemingly not an option, the government chartered a ferry to take U.S. citizens to Malta on Wednesday. The U.S. embassy said on its Web sites that Americans should bring the necessary travel documents, medications and essentials such as food, water and diapers with them for the six-hour journey.

    McClatchy’s report is a little more specific:

    With hundreds of U.S. citizens trapped for now in Libya, the Obama administration is responding cautiously to leader Moammar Gadhafi’s brutal attempt to suppress a rebellion, fearing that the wrong move might bring retaliation against Americans, U.S. officials said Tuesday.

    The fate of about 600 U.S. citizens, along with 35 non-essential Embassy staff, whom the State Department is trying to evacuate, puts President Barack Obama in an excruciating diplomatic bind.

    Despite the regime’s ongoing massacres that have killed hundreds of civilians, and executions of security personnel who refuse to take part in the atrocities, Obama hasn’t called on Gadhafi to leave. That’s a striking difference from his role in easing Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak from power after a much less bloody revolution earlier this month.

  48. Wisconsin Budget Bill Includes Agency to Gut Medicaid
    February 23, 2011 • 9:51AM

    A section of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s infamous “budget repair” bill for the current fiscal year, includes giving the state’s executive branch sweeping powers to make reductions in the enrollment and medical treatments given to 1.2 million poor people currently covered by Medicaid in the state. There is to be no involvement by the state’s legislative branch, nor any public scrutiny. If the new agency decides that an action is “cost beneficial,” the cut will be made. Cuts under consideration (from sources close to the Walker administration), include hiving off 50,000 Medicaid enrollees by requiring greater pauperization to qualify; eliminating such treatments as physical and speech therapy; dental care; prescription medication; optometry, etc.

    In Wisconsin, one in five of the population is on Medicaid now, as the economy tanks. These people have no recourse, so Walker’s budget-cutting is a death sentence. But Walker and Smith assert that the Medicaid program in the state faces a $1.8 billion state budget deficit over the next two fiscal years, beginning July 1; so, the people have to go.

    The response from the thousands now refusing Walker’s destruction of the state, is indicated in one of the demonstrator’s signs: “Gov. Walker, when you have a stroke, who will wipe your butt?”

    On Sunday, advocates for the poor, and the state’s medical delivery system (hospitals, skilled nursing homes), held a press conference in Madison to expose the Walker/Medicaid-cuts threat. Three-quarters of Wisconsin’s Medicaid recipients are children, low-income parents, and a cohort of childless adults. The remaining 25 percent are elderly and disabled, and account for most of the spending. Of these, the Smith crowd in Wisconsin says: don’t worry, trust us; the state will pay for elderly long term-care directly, if it pulls out of Medicaid.

    Nationwide, 58 million Americans receive medical care under Medicaid, amounting to 19 percent of the U.S. population. The lives of these people are immediate targets for Hitlerian “cost reduction,” especially the elderly and disabled, who are charged with being the “most expensive.” Medicaid expenditures (Fed and state) are running about $339 billion a year. By type of service, long-term care is the single largest category of services, accounting for 35 percent of care, and in some places, more.

    Florida’s governator Rick Scott (R) has threatened to pull out of Medicaid entirely, threatening 2.7 million people in his state. Texas Governor Rick Perry (R) did likewise in Fall, 2010, threatening 3.1 million people, then retracted. But Obama’s team is working overtime with state houses to cut care within Medicaid. HHS Sec. Kathleen Sebelius issued a letter and memorandum Feb. 3, detailing ways states can cut Medicaid (“Medicaid Cost-Savings Opportunities”). A request for waivers to cut Medicaid care was sent to Sebelius last month by 33 governors.

    Sebelius last week approved Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer’s (R) demand to expel 250,000 Medicaid enrollees in September, from its 1.1 million Medicaid roster.

    Meantime, states are turning to privatized “managed care” insurers, to “cover” their poor citizens, which is exactly in line with Obama’s London mandate. This means that Federal and state Medicaid payments go directly to Aetna, UnitedHealth, WellPoint, etc., whose officials then decide how to reduce medical treatment for the poor, from whom the insurers suck off blood-money. This is extolled as “private enterprise” by the Republicans and Obamacare alike.

    http://www.larouchepac.com/node/17573

  49. A good come to Jesus speech directed at the Republicans, lest they fail again . . . Certain people will have a knee jerk response to this, because they buy the political theater which the elites orchestrate to mask what is happening to our country, and to keep patriots in both parties off balance. Not me. I see good people in both parties, but they are not in charge. This speech applies to Democrats as well, but under Obama they are too far gone at the moment to take heed. Now is not the time for them. There is too much Obama love in their ranks to see what he has done to destroy the party and the country. The jury is out on whether they can recover, but never is a long time.
    ——————————————
    Posted by Melissa Clouthier (Profile)
    Wednesday, February 23rd at 9:42AM EST
    1 Comment

    After betraying the American trust in the Republican brand, Americans booted Republicans from power in 2006. The Republicans flopped around ignoring the obvious. So Americans booted them again in 2008. Republicans still didn’t get it. They picked moderate mealy-mouthed candidates. So, the Tea Party picked new ones and pushed back against a recalcitrant Republican party.

    What didn’t they get? Republicans didn’t get that by expanding government, participating in government take-overs of private business, and bailing out irresponsible industries, they destroyed their own brand. Republicans stood for small government, personal responsibility, and low taxation. They voted against these core tenets over and over. Voters were not pleased.

    Republicans now say they got the message.

    They made promises trying to woo frustrated voters back. One of them was that they’d cut 100 billion from the new budget. 100 billion is a nice round number and with a gazillion dollar deficit, seemed reasonable. (The deficit is actually 1.4 trillion–that is the government, in one year, is taking in 1.4 trillion LESS than it spends.) To illustrate this number, watch this:

    So yeah, 100 billion is a small, stiff shot in the scheme of the deficit. Moreover, the Republicans promised to cut it this year.

    Now, they’re not doing it. And like a wife listening to the excuses for the perfume smell, the Republican base is giving the Republicans the skeptical head waggle. Why? Past behavior doesn’t buy them much patience.

    Here’s the thing, it’s not about 100 billion. The Republicans don’t have a math problem. They have a relationship problem. Nobody believes them.

    The American people trusted them, but they still feel betrayed. They expected the Republicans, at least, to be fiscally responsible. Kinda like the Catholic Church would care for children. Kinda like people expect their cell phone to have service. Oh wait…

    So, the Republican Party needs to rebuild their reputation. They’ve done remarkably well in the short time they’ve been in office. But it’s been a short time.

    The Republicans have also been aided by a Democratic party who turned so far left that they freaked everyone out. 14 trillion is a terrifying number and one the Democrats created while promising “fiscal responsibility.” But the Republicans can’t count on the fear of out-of-control Dems to keep people close to them.

    Republicans need to recognize they have a brand and reputation and they need to guard it. They need to act with integrity and protect it. It is everything.

    Americans distrust their institutions. They see the collective–church, school, government, union, business, bank, environment–protected over the individual.

    Republicans, as an institution, need to demonstrate that they’re for the individual. That means keeping promises and not making foolish promises to begin with.

    Rebuilding trust takes a while. Republicans need to make keeping their word their first priority. If the people don’t trust them, their gains will be lost in the haze of feeling lied to.

    Republicans, keep your word. Put promises first, the power will follow.————————————————————–

  50. Gaddafi ‘ordered Lockerbie bombing’
    (UKPA) – 56 minutes ago

    Libya’s recently resigned justice minister claims Muammar Gaddafi personally ordered the Lockerbie bombing that killed 270 people in 1988, according to a Swedish newspaper.

    Expressen quotes Mustafa Abdel-Jalil as telling its correspondent in Libya that “I have proof that Gaddafi gave the order about Lockerbie”.

    The comments were translated from Arabic to Swedish.

    Abdel-Jalil stepped down as justice minister to protest the violence against anti-government demonstrations.

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ukpress/article/ALeqM5hzplGt9njlSWr7pIlaQx71jc3akA?docId=N0121181298471859869A

  51. wbboei
    February 23rd, 2011 at 10:23 am
    I think that’s a pretty good assessment of where the American people in general are about all instutitions in the country now. She loses me when she says: “Republicans, as an institution, need to demonstrate that they’re for the individual.” I don’t think that has ever been the guiding principle of the party.

  52. Here is a link to the video of an interview this morning with a young woman from Americans for Prosperity (buzzwords to hide real agenda alert). This interview is a thorough discussion of the union/state gov struggle going on in Ohio from the repub side. The young woman keeps spouting the mantra ‘free trade’ over and over as the solution for all problems and for the public sector ‘problem’. I’d like to take a 2 x4 and hit these free traders over the head. We tried free trade, it failed and we are in deep economic trouble because of it. However, people are finally learning to ask the right questions. When asked who funds her org, she says We’re blessed to have 70,000 individuals give to our organization. In the next statement she admits they do have corporate funders. The host then tells her there are several tweeted questions about whether the Koch brothers back her org. Yes, by golly, one of the Koch brothers is on the Board. The other telling factor is her reaction when the host tells her about a Gallup poll in US Today saying that 61% of Americans support the unions position. She is speechless.
    http://www.c-span.org/Events/Washington-Journal-for-Wednesday-Feb-23/10737419784-4/

  53. 5 Myths about federal workers

    Sunday, December 5, 2010; B03

    Federal employees are overpaid compared with private-sector workers.

    1The notion that federal workers consistently earn higher salaries than comparable private-sector workers has become an accepted truth. Conservative think tanks, including the Cato Institute, make much of data that does not offer fair comparisons of similar public-sector and private-sector jobs or account for how experience and education affect pay. A pediatrician with a small practice in Des Moines and a doctor at the National Institutes of Health who is leading a team of 50 researchers trying to cure cancer both provide health care, for example, but we shouldn’t expect that they be paid the same.

    Though some critics question their accuracy, government analyses show that federal employees make on average 24 percent less than their private-sector counterparts. The Congressional Research Service reported in 2009 that private industry pays higher salaries than the government for PhD-level employees in computer science, information science, mathematics, statistics, biological sciences, environmental life sciences, chemistry, economics, and civil, architectural, electrical and computer engineering. In addition, the average private-sector salary in 2010 for a recent college graduate was $48,661. Entry-level federal workers start at $34,075, or $42,209 for candidates with superior academic achievement.

    On the other hand, some federal blue-collar and clerical workers are paid more than those in the private sector. The ongoing debate about federal pay, however, does not address the root problem: The government does not have a pay system flexible enough to recruit the best talent and pay in accordance with the market.

    The federal workforce is bigger than ever.

    2Not including the U.S. Postal Service, the federal government employs 2.1 million people. The workforce is now slightly smaller than it was in 1967, at the height of Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society, and today there are 100 million more Americans to serve.

    Even during the Reagan administration, when small government was a political mantra, there were still between 2.1 and 2.2 million federal workers. In fact, there was an increase of about 95,000 federal employees between 1981 and 1989.

    In the 1990s, Bill Clinton reduced the workforce by nearly 350,000 to 1.8 million. Under George W. Bush, the federal workforce grew predominantly because of post-9/11 homeland security demands and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Today, two out of three federal civilian employees work for the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, Veterans Affairs or Justice. The vast majority of government hiring since 2003 has been in these four departments.

    You can’t fire a federal worker.

    3In the 2009 fiscal year, 11,275 federal employees were fired for poor performance or misconduct. In addition, a survey of federal managers by the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board suggests that besides those who are formally terminated, there are a sizable number of employees who voluntarily leave after they are counseled that their performance is unacceptable.

    Still, the myth persists that incompetent federal workers cannot be fired. Unfortunately, even federal managers buy into it, often believing that there is little they can do to deal with a poorly performing subordinate. The primary causes of this misunderstanding are that managers do not feel supported by top leadership and do not have clear performance expectations for their employees. Though the process is complex, there are rules in place across government allowing for the dismissal of workers not passing muster – and they should be used.

    Most federal workers are paper-pushing clerks.

    4The vast majority of federal workers hold white-collar professional, administrative and technical jobs, and aren’t just college dropouts archiving triplicates of your tax return. Approximately 20 percent√ of federal workers have a master’s degree, professional degree or doctorate√, vs. 13 percent√ in the private sector. Fifty-one√ percent of federal employees have at least a college degree, compared with 35 percent√ in the private sector.

    Remarkably, more than 50 current or former federal employees have received Nobel Prizes. In fact, about one in four American Nobel laureates have been federal workers. Their contributions have included the eradication of polio, the mapping of the human genome and the harnessing of atomic energy. Federal employees protect our food and drug supplies, manage airline traffic, foil terrorist attacks, care for our wounded veterans, and make sure the elderly and those with disabilities get their Medicare and Social Security benefits. This is hardly paper-pushing.

    Pay or hiring freezes would help slash the federal budget.

    5Clearly, hard choices are needed to restore our nation’s fiscal health. But across-the-board pay and hiring freezes avoid tough strategic decisions. The real question is not what can we cut, but how can we best save money.

    History has taught us that arbitrary, broad hiring and pay freezes don’t return significant cost savings. When the Clinton administration cut government jobs, overall federal spending still increased. Reagan’s 1981 hiring freeze fell apart when routine exemptions were granted to fill urgent demands, such as for VA doctors or military support personnel.

    How much will the government save by cutting 10 percent of the federal workforce – about 200,000 employees – as recommended by the president’s deficit commission? If the work of federal employees is simply contracted to the private sector, the savings could be minimal or the move could even cost us more. If government employees are not replaced and their salaries are returned to the Treasury, the government would save at most $20 billion annually, or roughly 0.5 percent of total budget outlays.

    Bottom line: We cannot come close to balancing the budget simply by cutting federal staffers or their salaries.

    Max Stier is president and chief executive of the nonprofit Partnership for Public Service. He has worked for all three branches of the federal government.

  54. “Gallup poll in US Today saying that 61% of Americans support the unions position. She is speechless.”
    ______________

    I wish my friend was speechless or at least had the ability to listen to reason- She reminded me how qualified she was in union affairs having over 30 yrs experience, saying, the unions would be the losers because the general public would relate to them as brown shirts…

    Of course, It never occurred to her how the dynamics of the late 70s has changed to the dynamics of the 21st century. And how many careers, nurses, school teachers, carpenters, plumbers are actually 80% of America’s workforce that, surprise, has Unionized over the last 30 yrs.

    Like talking to a wall!

  55. MISTAKE OF EPIC PROPORTIONS??

    Even the New Republic now wonders what the heck is Team Obama 2012 strategy. But given that William Galston is a former policy advisor to Bill Clinton…

    Money quote:

    “Taken together, these clues suggest that the Obama’s 2012 campaign will focus more on the Democratic periphery—territory newly won in 2008—than on the heartland, where elections have been won and lost for the past half-century. This could turn out to be a mistake of epic proportions. Why? Because the United States looks a lot more like Ohio than like Colorado.”

    tnr.com/article/the-vital-center/83993/obama-2012-reelection-colorado-ohio

    Colorado vs. Ohio
    ==============

    Two possible reelection strategies for Obama, only one of which can succeed.

    William Galston
    February 23, 2011

    In some presidential cycles, an incumbent’s reelection strategy doesn’t matter all that much. When the economy is very strong (1984), the incumbent wins big; when it’s very weak (1932), he loses even bigger. And when a party chooses a nominee seen as outside the mainstream (1964, 1972), it suffers a crushing defeat. It’s possible that one or more of these circumstances could prevail next year. The economy could over- or under-perform current projections; the Republicans could choose a nominee who’s too conservative or lacks credibility as a potential president. But it’s more likely that both the economy and the presidential nomination contest will yield results in the zone where strategic choices could prove decisive. In that context, two recent events are alarming, because they offer clues to what may well become President Obama’s reelection strategy.

    The first was a Ron Brownstein interview with David Axelrod, who said that he saw Michael Bennet’s 2010 senatorial victory in Colorado as “particularly instructive.” As Brownstein noted, Bennet prevailed by mobilizing “enough minorities, young people, and socially liberal, well-educated white women to overcome a sharp turn toward the GOP among most of the other white voters in his state.” The second event was DNC chair Tim Kaine’s selection of educated, new economy Charlotte, North Carolina, as the site for the 2012 Democratic convention. In the process, he rejected three Midwestern finalists: St. Louis, Minneapolis, and, most notably, Cleveland.

    Taken together, these clues suggest that the Obama’s 2012 campaign will focus more on the Democratic periphery—territory newly won in 2008—than on the heartland, where elections have been won and lost for the past half-century. This could turn out to be a mistake of epic proportions. Why? Because the United States looks a lot more like Ohio than like Colorado.

    Here’s a snapshot from the exit polls in the 2008 election, versus the 2010 Ohio and Colorado Senate elections, broken down by education level:
    a)2008 presidential election
    b)2010 Colorado Senate
    c)2010 Ohio Senate

    a b c
    Less than HS 4 1 3
    HS only 20 12 25
    Some College 31 20 32
    College Grad 28 39 24
    Post-grad 17 28 15

    The 2010 Colorado electorate was a total outlier (67 percent with a B.A. or more), while Ohio was a near-microcosm of the national presidential electorate. Every Midwestern state for which exit polls are available looked pretty much like Ohio.

    Now let’s look at the new Gallup state-by-state survey released on February 21. It shows that between 2008 and 2010, Democratic identifiers and leaners have declined as a share of the electorate in every state. The median loss was 6.1 percent. And every Midwestern state was at or above the median.

    Registered/Lean Democratic, 2008 – 2010
    Wisconsin -9.2
    Iowa -8.9
    Illinois -8.2
    Ohio -7.8
    Missouri -7.2
    Indiana -6.9
    Pennsylvania -6.5
    Michigan -6.3
    Minnesota -6.1

    No wonder that Democrats lost 2010 Senate races in Wisconsin, Ohio, Iowa, Missouri, Indiana, light blue Pennsylvania, and even dark blue Illinois, or that they lost gubernatorial races in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Iowa. Small consolation that Democratic gubernatorial candidates managed to scratch out victories in Illinois (by 20,000 votes out of 3.5 million cast) and Minnesota (by 9,000 out of 2 million).

    The Midwest is home to large numbers of white working-class voters, who accounted for nearly 40 percent of all voters nationwide in 2008. Obama has never done very well with this group, losing them by 2 to 1 against Hillary Clinton in the primaries and by 58 percent to 40 percent against McCain in the general election. And they turned against Democratic candidates in the vast majority of 2010 House and Senate races.

    As a recent Washington Post/Kaiser/Harvard survey reveals, white working-class voters are even more disaffected today. They are gloomy about the present and think it will be a long time before the economy recovers. They fear that the job market of the future will have little use for workers with their level of education and skills. Only 14 percent say that the president’s economic policies are working, and a large majority think that his administration isn’t doing enough to look after their economic interests. Remarkably, when asked which party better understands the people’s economic priorities, they give the Republicans a 14-point edge. Moreover, white working-class voters have long tended toward conservatism on social issues, nationalism in foreign policy, and hawkishness on defense.

    Given all this, it’s tempting to look toward states like Colorado, where, Brownstein notes, Bennet won despite losing blue-collar white women by double digits and blue-collar white men by more than 2 to 1. His winning coalition was built on minorities, young people, and college-educated white women—precisely the groups Ruy Teixeira highlighted in an impressive analysis published in March 2009. He argued that the confluence of demographic, geographic, and attitudinal changes underway for decades heralded a “new progressive majority.” Not only was the political salience of social issues in decline, but also majorities of Americans had endorsed a stronger role for government, guaranteed health coverage, and clean energy. A principal driver of these shifts was the declining share of white working-class voters and the rising tide of minorities and highly educated professionals.

    In a less noticed portion of his analysis, Teixeira offered a cautionary note. The white working class “is still an enormous group of voters—still larger than white college graduate voters—and there are good reasons to suspect that the exit polls may significantly underestimate the size of this group.” He went on to observe that “Progressives ignore that large a group at their peril … [their] already large deficit among the white working class—clearly their biggest political vulnerability—could easily become larger. If that happens, any fall-offs in support among their core and emerging constituencies could put the progressive majority at risk, despite continuing demographic trends in their favor.” This is a pretty good description of what transpired during Obama’s first two years.

    The seductiveness of the Colorado model is obvious. But the consequences of succumbing to it could be dire. The last Democrat to win the presidency without prevailing in Ohio was John F. Kennedy. The electoral college math worked only because he won South Carolina, Georgia, half of Alabama’s electoral votes, and even Texas, thanks to LBJ’s presence on the ticket. None of these states is remotely within Democratic reach today. Ohio is more than a rich pool of votes; it is the closest state we have to a microcosm of the nation.

    Barack Obama’s path to reelection runs through Ohio and the Midwest, not around them. And that means taking seriously the concerns of the voters throughout the region who deserted Democrats in droves last year—Americans unlikely to be moved by an agenda of high-speed rail, cleaner energy, and educational reforms that rarely seem to yield good jobs for themselves or their children. Instead, ratcheting up efforts to boost exports would work better; so would toughening our line against the excesses of China’s economic nationalism. In addition, Obama should acknowledge clearly that no region has gained more from the administration’s forward-looking restructuring of the U.S. auto industry; and none would have lost more if the administration had allowed it to collapse. Despite the continuing unpopularity of this initiative nationwide, the administration might as well take credit and tout it full-throatedly. Obama should also use his proposed Infrastructure Bank as the leading edge of a program to “rebuild America” that would create large numbers of good jobs that can’t be exported. And white working-class skepticism about the first two years of the administration’s economic agenda gives the president one more reason to participate in broader bipartisan discussions about our fiscal future.

    It’s easy to claim that the administration need not choose between a Colorado strategy and an Ohio strategy. At the level of tactics, that may be true. If the Obama campaign raises as much money as, or more than it did, in 2008, it will be able to organize and advertise everywhere. But at a deeper level, that doesn’t hold. The administration can have only one agenda. If its policy choices over the next 18 months are directed principally toward mobilizing voters from its base, it will pay a price among the millions of others without whose support Obama would never have been elected.

    &&&
    William Galston is a former policy advisor to Bill Clinton and current senior fellow at the Brookings Institution.

  56. CHUCKLE TIME:

    Obama proves he is not out of touch, because….(drum roll please):

    “And Obama has said he is not out of touch with people who are suffering, because he reads 10 letters from ordinary Americans each day.”

    washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/02/22/AR2011022202401.html

    On Obama jobs tour, unemployed have little voice
    ======================

    By Perry Bacon Jr.
    Washington Post Staff Writer
    Tuesday, February 22, 2011; 11:02 PM

    CLEVELAND – President Obama has traveled across the country since the November midterm elections to tout his economic vision and rebuild relationships with the business community, meeting with executives, community college presidents, students, venture capitalists, plant workers and others.

    One group has been left out: the nearly one in 10 working-age Americans who are seeking a job but can’t find one. In eight trips outside Washington since Election Day, Obama – who frequently says he uses such travel to better understand the lives of Americans – has held almost no formal meetings with groups of unemployed people or organizations that advocate for them.

    White House officials were unable to give a single example of him on these trips interacting, even in private, with a person who had recently lost a job, although they emphasized that they don’t know about every person with whom Obama has talked.

    Instead, on a recent West Coast swing, the president met behind closed doors with a group of Silicon Valley executives, then headed to an Intel plant near Portland, Ore., to speak to workers there.

    He met Tuesday with small-business owners and entrepreneurs at Cleveland State University. He called small businesses “the key to the future, because it’s the new products, it’s the new services, things that nobody else thought of before that are going to help absorb all the talented Americans out there who are looking for careers.”

    Said John Powell, executive director of the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at Ohio State University: “There has been an olive branch to the corporate community after the election. Where is the olive branch to the working-class community, the unions, the everyday folks? It’s hard to imagine a Democratic president doing a jobs tour and not meeting with people who are out of work or [with] unions.”

    Bruce Mirken, spokesman for the Greenlining Institute, a liberal-leaning policy institute in the San Francisco Bay Area, criticized Obama’s visit to Silicon Valley, saying, “We’re not disappointed he talked to CEOs, we’re disappointed he only talked to CEOs.”

    White House officials defended the president’s recent trips. They said he is meeting with groups and companies that are innovating and creating jobs.

    And they said his commitment to the unemployed is easy to demonstrate. He has extended jobless benefits for up to 99 weeks to people in the states with the highest unemployment rates, pushed for the inclusion of $57 billion of those benefits in a December tax compromise with Republicans and put in his budget request a proposal to suspend interest for two years on money the federal government has loaned states to fund unemployment benefits.

    And Obama has said he is not out of touch with people who are suffering, because he reads 10 letters from ordinary Americans each day.

    “The president has not only aggressively advocated policies to support Americans fighting to find a job, but he is working to get businesses to hire and to invest in innovation and education so we can get the American people back to work and win the future,” said Amy Brundage, a White House spokeswoman.

    Some advocates for the unemployed defend Obama.

    “The administration really has done a lot, especially on the safety-net side,” said Maurice Emsellem, policy co-director for the National Unemployment Law Project, a group that advocates for people who are out of work.

    But Emsellem said he wishes Obama and Congress would look for more inventive ways to reduce unemployment instead of largely waiting for the private sector to act.

    Powell and others said meeting with jobless people would help Obama better understand the problem. They argue that much of a president’s job is symbolism, and that by making a series of trips to talk mostly to business leaders, he signals that they are a priority for his administration.

    “People notice who the president is meeting with,” said Powell, who was in the Portland area talking with African American leaders when Obama made his brief stop at Intel. “Everything the president does has implications, particularly the symbolism. People notice he is meeting with the elites.”

    Mitch Besser, a Portland area software engineer who lost his job last June, protested outside Intel when Obama visited, objecting to a trade agreement with South Korea the administration is trying to get through Congress.

    He said he wished that he or another jobless tech worker could have met with the president.

    “I would have liked him to know that the amount of education doesn’t necessarily guarantee you a high-paying job,” said Besser, who has a master’s degree in software design and development. Being laid off has “been very difficult for my family,” he said. “When he makes these statements about education being what will pull you out of it, it’s very difficult to hear those statements.”

    But Stephen Spoonamore, who runs a reactive glass material company in the Cleveland area and attended Obama’s forum, defended the president’s focus on employers. “He is talking to companies like mine that are making jobs,” he said.

  57. wbboei
    February 23rd, 2011 at 10:23 am
    I think that’s a pretty good assessment of where the American people in general are about all instutitions in the country now. She loses me when she says: “Republicans, as an institution, need to demonstrate that they’re for the individual.” I don’t think that has ever been the guiding principle of the party.
    ————————————————————
    The core principles of the Republican Party are individualist. The rugged individualism of the nineteenth century, and the limited government theories which are at the core of the Constitution. Unfortunately, in recent times, those principles have been honored more in the breach than in the observance. The nadir was the Bush years, when neocons ruled the roost. The looming question is whether the Republican Party can drive the money changers from the temple. If they cannot, then there will be a revolution in this country, because the outrage we are seeing now is a shadow of things to come, if the politicians of both parties continue to protect the wealthy and throw the middle class to the wolves. I have no illusions about either party. If you adhere to Republican principles to the exclusion of everything else, then groups who are not capable of self sufficiency and need the help of government will revolt. But if you embrace government as the Dimocratic Party does and end all solution, then you substitute the tyranny of bureaucrats for the tyranny of businesses. In fact, the Dimocratic party is moving quickly in the direction of Fascism, as they forge a partnership between multi national corporations and big government. If you doubt it read Hedges.

    The reason I have no love for either party is because history has shown that the tyranny of the bureaucratic class can be just as inimical to the general welfare as the tyranny of business. Today the Republican Party suffers from one of those vices, whereas the Dimocratic Party under Obama suffers from both.

  58. BAR’s summary of the Chicago election”

    (snip)

    “Chicago’s Daley regime was a half century circus of arrogance, racist inequality and corruption. Thanks in part to President Obama, whom Daley launched toward the White House, the Machine has been allowed to succeed itself in the person of Rahm Emanuel. Chicago’s new boss will look and act a lot like its old bosses. Chicago’s near term future, too, looks a lot like its past, but with fewer resources left to steal and privatize.

    But that’s OK. The Daley Machine has cloned itself, donned blackface, and gone national. May the gods help us all.”

    http://www.blackagendareport.com/content/rahm-emanuel-barack-obama-neo-liberalism-are-daleys-gifts-chicago-and-nation-thanks

  59. wbboei
    February 23rd, 2011 at 10:23 am
    I think that’s a pretty good assessment of where the American people in general are about all instutitions in the country now. She loses me when she says: “Republicans, as an institution, need to demonstrate that they’re for the individual.” I don’t think that has ever been the guiding principle of the party.
    ———————————————————
    An afterthought which undercuts my argument and supports yours. The Republican Party was the beneficiary of the Civil War, and in its aftermath the guilded age occurred in the north while the south fell into a dark age for half a century. The Party formed an alliance with the monied interests in the East, and this came to a head in 1912. Teddy Roosevelt, former Governor of New York, was a legitimate progressive and wanted to do what was right for the people. He fought with Taft who represented the monied interests. It resulted in a schism within the party, and eventually TR left the party and created the Bull Moose Party. Judge Learned Hand, fresh out of Harvard, was a devotee of the Bull Moose Party, and he would quote Goldsmith’s poetic verse on point whenever the occasion presented itself:

    Ill fares the land
    To hastening ills aprey
    When wealth accumulates
    And men decay

  60. “The rugged individualism of the nineteenth century,…..”
    *********
    Among other things, “Free labor” and “Constitutional Freedom of Contract”. A return to the Lochner era is a Rethugs wet dream.

  61. Rights group: Bedouin smugglers rape African women in Egypt trying to reach asylum in Israel
    By Diaa Hadid (CP) – 36 minutes ago

    JAFFA, Israel — An Israeli rights group said Wednesday that Bedouin smugglers in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula have raped dozens of African women who they promised to smuggle into Israel over the past year.

    At least 86 women from Eritrea reported they were raped while in Sinai, which borders Israel, said Ran Cohen, executive director of Physicians for Human Rights-Israel.

    “Some of them are held separately just for this cause (rape),” said Azizet Kidane, an Eritrean nun who interviewed the women on behalf of the organization. None of the women agreed to talk to reporters.

    Kidane said the number of raped women was likely higher because many women were ashamed to discuss sexual violence.

    Thousands of African migrants cross Egypt’s Sinai desert each year in hopes of reaching Israel. Their numbers have increased in the past year as Mediterranean countries make it harder to get into Europe by boat, Cohen said.

    The migrants include Africans searching for work and refugees fleeing violent governments. Israel is grappling with the issue, torn between helping the migrants and worrying about the effects of the presence of growing numbers of non-Jews on the character of the state.

    The rights group said male migrants were chained, whipped, deprived of water, buried in the sand, prodded with electric rods and left in metal containers. The group based its findings on interviews conducted with around 220 Eritrean asylum seekers.

    “They call the families (of the asylum seekers) on satellite phones and make them hear their sons and daughters scream,” Cohen said.

    Yemane Tesfom, a 32-year-old Eritrean asylum seeker, said he and a group of several dozen other men were held in chains at a Sinai compound. They were only released to work.

    Tesfom said he saw eight men die from dehydration, exhaustion and beatings. He showed the AP scars on his leg from where he said he was beaten so badly he needed to be hospitalized for five months in Israel.

    The rights group is asking Israel’s government to allow the Africans access to health services.

    Israel’s government expects about 13,000 illegal migrants from Africa will enter this year, joining about 20,000 others who came between 2006 and 2009. Israel is building a fence along its desert border with Egypt to cut down smuggling and infiltrations by migrants and militants.

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/canadianpress/article/ALeqM5jlwvGRQgMxfmr7XLKxE5PCnKtiFw?docId=6040064

  62. Wow! Ulsterman has some shocking news this morning on two fronts…I suggest everyone reads them. I don’t have time to link them…I’ve got to take a nap before work…I got up early to file some court papers….but I’m am exhausted!

    Moon,

    Pls for heaven sake….be careful!

  63. JanH-I read about that situation in the Jerusalem Post a few weeks ago. It is truly awful. Israel is trying to help these poor Africans and these smugglers are horrific people .

  64. Judge Learned Hand, fresh out of Harvard, was a devotee of the Bull Moose Party, and he would quote Goldsmith’s poetic verse on point whenever the occasion presented itself:

    Ill fares the land
    To hastening ills aprey
    When wealth accumulates
    And men decay

    ========================

    Now with the GOP attacking Planned Parenthood, Chesterton’s version is more applicable:

    Ill fares the land
    To hastening ills aprey
    When men accumulate
    And wealth decays

  65. On Sunday, advocates for the poor, and the state’s medical delivery system (hospitals, skilled nursing homes), held a press conference in Madison to expose the Walker/Medicaid-cuts threat.

    ====================

    Does anyone have more on this OTHER than LaRouche?

  66. we are using modern technology to fight the Republicans. Here is one example of what these faux leaders are doing scrumptiously, rather than entering the public arena, arguing their case . . . doing the job they were hired to do. They could play a role in shaping a solution–and then turn their guns on the banking elites

    ===============
    1. SCrumptiously? Sending out their communiques on puff pastry, maybe?

    2. The public area has moved from the smoky rooms of the WI statehouse — if it ever was there. THey’re getting more public exposure outside than inside. Inside they’d get voted over immediately, “nothing ot see here.”

    Outside they are the picket lines telling their side TO the public.

    3. Shaping a solution? They and their demonstrators are doing it the best way they can, as Walker’s GOP won’t deal with them in the normal way.

    4. Turn their guns on–? What guns? Inside the statehouse they are a minority, easily overridden. Outside and in the streets, they do have a little ammunition.

  67. An explosive report from Ulsterman

    The Ulsterman Report: Rahm Emanuel and The Jarrett White House
    Published by Ulsterman on February 22, 2011 in US Politics

    Regarding his time as President Barack Obama’s White House Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel likely has lots to say. Indeed he does…

    When Rahm Emanuel abruptly announced his intention to leave his position with the Obama White House to initiate a campaign to be Chicago’s next mayor, Inside-the-Beltway eyebrows raised in unison at the move. Reports circulated that Emanuel and White House adviser Valerie Jarrett, as well as First Lady Michelle Obama, were in near-constant disagreement over the tone and direction of White House policy. Most notable among these disagreements was the push for Obamacare that dominated the then newly elected president’s agenda.

    As White House Chief of Staff, Rahm had warned against moving on healthcare until after the economy was first on a clear path to recovery. With the strong urging of Valerie Jarrett, and reported demands from high ranking labor union leaders, President Obama disregarded Emanuel’s warnings and forged ahead with healthcare reform. Accepting the president’s decision to do so, Emanuel then cautioned both Obama and Jarett that such a move for healthcare reform would require a strong, consistent, and totally unified message from within the Democratic Party – and that as president, Obama must lead that messaging – messaging that must be an all out offensive to convince the hearts and minds of Americans that healthcare reform was the right thing at the right time.

    Read more in US Politics
    « If The President Were a JournalistThe White House Insider | How Mr President is Making Money on The Side for His Retirement »
    Obama failed miserably in doing so. Early in the debate, Emanuel was appalled to hear the president explain to him how “Our friends in the media…uh, you know, they got this thing covered. We’ve all wanted this for, uh, a very…we’ve been working at this, for a very long time and now the news, uh, the media is gonna push this to the finish line for us. We’ll win the argument.” The president had no clue as to how to actually forge legislation. He was in effect handing the debate over to the media, along with the leadership members of Congress. Not only did the president lack any clue – he cared little to remedy that shortcoming. Rahm Emanuel began to realize that for Barack Obama, ignorance truly was bliss.

    Instead of placing blame for the inevitable chaos that was the Obamacare legislation on Congressional Democrats and White House advisers – namely Valerie Jarrett, Obama turned against his White House Chief of Staff – the very figure who had so recently warned the president such chaos might very well result. Rahm found himself marginalized within an administration that was bereft of both real experience, and at times, even the simplest forms of pragmatic leadership. Soon, Emanuel’s opinion was rarely sought out within Obama’s West Wing, leaving Rahm to instead spend increasing time listening to the growing concerns of moderate Democrats facing political annihilation in the upcoming November election cycle. The more communication Emanuel had with these moderate Democrats, the more he was seen by both Jarrett and the First Lady as a figure who could not be trusted. Jarrett’s influence over the president grew substantially during those weeks and months. When an open confrontation between Emanuel and the First Lady erupted just steps from the president, Obama barely paid it notice at the time, though the incident most certainly worsened the White House Chief of Staff’s already rapidly declining position within the administration. At no time was this decline made more clear to Emanuel as when he directed a very simple policy question to the president only to see Obama quickly look over to Jarrett, who shot back at Emanuel, “We – the president, will get back to you on that.” Jarrett had become Obama’s brain – he now appeared near-incapable of even making the most basic of executive decisions without her approval.

    Around that same time, an unlikely alliance was forged between Emanuel and then House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who while publicly maintaining a position of confidence that the November elections would not be nearly as bad for Democrats as some were predicting, was behind the scenes furious at how little effort President Obama had expended in selling the healthcare legislation. The term “Fu–ing moron” in describing Obama is said to have been used by Pelosi on more than one occasion in the presence of Emanuel. Each of them reached out to the most significant of the non-labor union party donors to voice their now shared concern for the seeming inability of President Obama to effectively engage in the job of President of the United States. It was among these donors that the presence of a festering White House scandal began to be quietly spoken of, leading some to worry that further investment in Obama Inc. might very well prove irresponsible if said scandal were to develop into full blown public awareness. These same figures feared the resulting damage to the Democratic Party would be too great, its impacts too long lasting, and thus demanded that both Pelosi and Emanuel remain quiet on the information – at least until such time as it became viable to allow it to go public. To ensure this silence, each were offered future positions of power. One would be allowed to remain on as minority leader should the Democrats lose the House in the November elections, and the other would be allowed to be elected Mayor of Chicago. All sides agreed – though neither side knew the agreement made by the other. Pelosi continued to assure Rahm he could count on her unwavering support as he sought to somehow improve the performance of President Obama while simultaneously waging his ongoing battle against Jarrett.

    In the interim between his still not yet public plan to leave the White House and run for Chicago mayor, Rahm Emanuel began an in-house campaign against both Valerie Jarrett and Michelle Obama, resulting in significant staff departure, and a considerable uptick of in-house information making its way to the public, if even by less than mainstream media means. And while the still-White House Chief of Staff engaged in this passive aggressive battle against the two women who held sway over the President of the United States, Rahm held out hope that Barack Obama would somehow rise to the level of his own considerable potential and prove himself both willing and able to fully coordinate the duties of president. That potential was never met. Obama remained a perplexing mixture of passivity and totally self-involved arrogance. During a brief meeting with a senior member of the Senate, Rahm learned of the term “the tool” as it was applied to Obama. So said this senior Democrat, “That is all he is to us. A damn tool. And a blunt tool at that.” Emanuel took no pleasure in hearing his president being described in such terms, but he also knew that Obama had shown little to prove otherwise.

    Just as he prepared to make his intentions of leaving the White House known to the president, Emanuel was given a terrible warning–his intention to leave had already become known to Valerie Jarrett. The warning came from none other than his former boss, Bill Clinton

    Read more: http://newsflavor.com/politics/us-politics/the-ulsterman-report-rahm-emanuel-and-the-jarrett-white-house/#ixzz1EoRTBY5E

    Read more: http://newsflavor.com/politics/us-politics/the-ulsterman-report-rahm-emanuel-and-the-jarrett-white-house/#ixzz1EoQsRMBs

  68. The Wisconsin bill […] would strip them of the right to negotiate benefits and working conditions.

    ===================

    This sounds like hyperbole but it is not. Walker’s bill really does specificly PROHIBIT ANY collective bargaining except on very limited issues that are already limited by state law.

    There are 3 separate aspects to this bill.
    1. percentages to contribute
    2. “right to work” — joining a union should be voluntary
    3. prohibit any collective bargaining see above

    Personally, I support #2, “right to work”; oppose #3; neutral on #1.

  69. An explosive report from Ulsterman

    The Ulsterman Report: Rahm Emanuel and The Jarrett White House
    Published by Ulsterman on February 22, 2011 in US Politics

    Regarding his time as President Barack Obama’s White House Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel likely has lots to say. Indeed he does…

    When Rahm Emanuel abruptly announced his intention to leave his position with the Obama White House to initiate a campaign to be Chicago’s next mayor, Inside-the-Beltway eyebrows raised in unison at the move. Reports circulated that Emanuel and White House adviser Valerie Jarrett, as well as First Lady Michelle Obama, were in near-constant disagreement over the tone and direction of White House policy. Most notable among these disagreements was the push for Obamacare that dominated the then newly elected president’s agenda.

    As White House Chief of Staff, Rahm had warned against moving on healthcare until after the economy was first on a clear path to recovery. With the strong urging of Valerie Jarrett, and reported demands from high ranking labor union leaders, President Obama disregarded Emanuel’s warnings and forged ahead with healthcare reform. Accepting the president’s decision to do so, Emanuel then cautioned both Obama and Jarett that such a move for healthcare reform would require a strong, consistent, and totally unified message from within the Democratic Party – and that as president, Obama must lead that messaging – messaging that must be an all out offensive to convince the hearts and minds of Americans that healthcare reform was the right thing at the right time.

    Obama failed miserably in doing so. Early in the debate, Emanuel was appalled to hear the president explain to him how “Our friends in the media…uh, you know, they got this thing covered. We’ve all wanted this for, uh, a very…we’ve been working at this, for a very long time and now the news, uh, the media is gonna push this to the finish line for us. We’ll win the argument.” The president had no clue as to how to actually forge legislation. He was in effect handing the debate over to the media, along with the leadership members of Congress. Not only did the president lack any clue – he cared little to remedy that shortcoming. Rahm Emanuel began to realize that for Barack Obama, ignorance truly was bliss.

    Instead of placing blame for the inevitable chaos that was the Obamacare legislation on Congressional Democrats and White House advisers – namely Valerie Jarrett, Obama turned against his White House Chief of Staff – the very figure who had so recently warned the president such chaos might very well result. Rahm found himself marginalized within an administration that was bereft of both real experience, and at times, even the simplest forms of pragmatic leadership. Soon, Emanuel’s opinion was rarely sought out within Obama’s West Wing, leaving Rahm to instead spend increasing time listening to the growing concerns of moderate Democrats facing political annihilation in the upcoming November election cycle. The more communication Emanuel had with these moderate Democrats, the more he was seen by both Jarrett and the First Lady as a figure who could not be trusted. Jarrett’s influence over the president grew substantially during those weeks and months. When an open confrontation between Emanuel and the First Lady erupted just steps from the president, Obama barely paid it notice at the time, though the incident most certainly worsened the White House Chief of Staff’s already rapidly declining position within the administration. At no time was this decline made more clear to Emanuel as when he directed a very simple policy question to the president only to see Obama quickly look over to Jarrett, who shot back at Emanuel, “We – the president, will get back to you on that.” Jarrett had become Obama’s brain – he now appeared near-incapable of even making the most basic of executive decisions without her approval.

    Around that same time, an unlikely alliance was forged between Emanuel and then House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who while publicly maintaining a position of confidence that the November elections would not be nearly as bad for Democrats as some were predicting, was behind the scenes furious at how little effort President Obama had expended in selling the healthcare legislation. The term “Fu–ing moron” in describing Obama is said to have been used by Pelosi on more than one occasion in the presence of Emanuel. Each of them reached out to the most significant of the non-labor union party donors to voice their now shared concern for the seeming inability of President Obama to effectively engage in the job of President of the United States. It was among these donors that the presence of a festering White House scandal began to be quietly spoken of, leading some to worry that further investment in Obama Inc. might very well prove irresponsible if said scandal were to develop into full blown public awareness. These same figures feared the resulting damage to the Democratic Party would be too great, its impacts too long lasting, and thus demanded that both Pelosi and Emanuel remain quiet on the information – at least until such time as it became viable to allow it to go public. To ensure this silence, each were offered future positions of power. One would be allowed to remain on as minority leader should the Democrats lose the House in the November elections, and the other would be allowed to be elected Mayor of Chicago. All sides agreed – though neither side knew the agreement made by the other. Pelosi continued to assure Rahm he could count on her unwavering support as he sought to somehow improve the performance of President Obama while simultaneously waging his ongoing battle against Jarrett.

    In the interim between his still not yet public plan to leave the White House and run for Chicago mayor, Rahm Emanuel began an in-house campaign against both Valerie Jarrett and Michelle Obama, resulting in significant staff departure, and a considerable uptick of in-house information making its way to the public, if even by less than mainstream media means. And while the still-White House Chief of Staff engaged in this passive aggressive battle against the two women who held sway over the President of the United States, Rahm held out hope that Barack Obama would somehow rise to the level of his own considerable potential and prove himself both willing and able to fully coordinate the duties of president. That potential was never met. Obama remained a perplexing mixture of passivity and totally self-involved arrogance. During a brief meeting with a senior member of the Senate, Rahm learned of the term “the tool” as it was applied to Obama. So said this senior Democrat, “That is all he is to us. A damn tool. And a blunt tool at that.” Emanuel took no pleasure in hearing his president being described in such terms, but he also knew that Obama had shown little to prove otherwise.

    Just as he prepared to make his intentions of leaving the White House known to the president, Emanuel was given a terrible warning–his intention to leave had already become known to Valerie Jarrett. The warning came from none other than his former boss, Bill Clinton

    Read more: http://newsflavor.com/politics/us-politics/the-ulsterman-report-rahm-emanuel-and-the-jarrett-white-house/#ixzz1EoRTBY5E

  70. democrat1

    I was just about to post the latest Ulsterman Report…

    We think alike-

    Ulsterman has several reports that have not made it here. I will attempt getting them ready for posting…

  71. The Ulsterman Report: Obama Urges Union Chaos in America

    As union leaders in Wisconsin and other states declare desire for Egyptian-style revolution, President Barack Obama urges them on.

    As thousands of union-led protesters stormed the Wisconsin state capitol this past week, media reports began to circulate that direct involvement of Obama administration operatives were fully engaged in helping coordinate efforts on behalf of the union organizers. When speaking of the Obama White House and labor unions in the United States, it is clear they are very much the same political entity working in unison to finalize the goal of a joint Big Labor-Big Government cabal.

    Take this quote from a recent Washington Post report:

    The president’s political machine worked in close coordination Thursday with state and national union officials to mobilize thousands of protesters to gather in Madison and to plan similar demonstrations in other state capitals.

    Their efforts began to spread, as thousands of labor supporters turned out for a hearing in Columbus, Ohio, to protest a measure from Gov. John Kasich (R) that would cut collective-bargaining rights.

    By the end of the day, Democratic Party officials were working to organize additional demonstrations in Ohio and Indiana, where an effort is underway to trim benefits for public workers. Some union activists predicted similar protests in Missouri, New Jersey and Pennsylvania…

    When questioned about the union activist unrest in Wisconsin, President Obama made clear where his loyalties were to be found, declaring that Republican Governor Scott Walker’s attempts to renegotiate the bargaining process as a means of helping to deal with a crippling budget crisis as being, “an assault on unions.” And as the president spoke these words to a local Wisconsin news station, his well funded and powerful political action group Organizing for America began to coordinate on behalf of the Wisconsin and other state union groups in order to stage full scale protests against any state governors considering attempts to scale back on budgets that would impact union members.

    What Governor Scott Walker has proposed specifically is to suggest coordinating public pension and health care costs to more closely approximate what those costs are in the private sector – in effect, attempting to cancel the blank check state unions have utilized repeatedly to the detriment of the taxpayers. For that responsible request, unions are now accusing Governor Walker of being Hitler – those same unions that President Obama is so directly supporting with both his own words of encouragement and substantial political cash.

    http://newsflavor.com/politics/us-politics/the-ulsterman-report-obama-urges-union-chaos-in-america/

  72. The Ulsterman Report: Obama’s Double-Down Deficit Spending

    No president in the history of the nation has come close to Barack Obama’s levels of deficit spending – and Obama is lying to the nation about it over and over again…

    President Barack Obama’s most recent national budget proposal is a mish-mash of special interest payoffs and continued Big Government spending madness at a time when even liberals are beginning to show signs of concern over the country’s astounding budget deficit. Obama speaks often of a government in need of “responsible” spending – while at the same time proposing another trillion dollars in debt laden spending that will further cripple the economic futures of America’s children and grandchildren. In just three years in office, Barack Obama will be directly responsible for nearly 4 1/2 TRILLION dollars in deficit spending. No president in the history of the nation has come close to this level of economic malfunction.

    The implications for such irresponsible leadership are yet to be fully realized, but that day of reckoning will come, with a growing number of economists indicating it will be sooner rather than later. And yet, Obama continues to spend money American simply does not have, and for programs and liberal social engineering agendas that have no basis in actual necessity. When the media actually raises a question regarding this kind of spending madness, President Obama mumbles his now oft-repeated fact that such deficits reflect a lower percentage of GDP than previous administrations. Either Barack Obama does not actually knowthe economic history of the country he was elected to lead, or he is intentionally lying. Perhaps it is both.

    Even when looking back to America’s WWII era, Obama’s deficits have already surpassed the deficit spending during WWII – this according to the Office of Management and Budgets historical charts. In inflation adjusted dollars, America spent approximately 2 trillion dollars in five years on WWII. Barack Obama, in just three years, has already almost DOUBLED that amount. During WWII America defeated enemies on two massive war fronts. As for Obama he has accomplished…what?

    And here is an even more chilling projection given to us recenlty by a report in The Weekly Standard. Under the proposed spending arc of Barack Obama, the United States will be paying more each year in interest payments on its debt to creditors such as China, than it will on its entire military budget. Such a scenario poses yet further risk to future generations of Americans does it not? And yet, Barack Obama appears to care little about that fact, or perhaps even supports its potential implications.

    Regarding how Obama stacks up to previous presidents over the last four decades, this chart makes clear that as a president, Barack Obama’s spending places him in his own dangerous category compared to his historical contemporaries. And it’s not even close…

    You can view the spend thrift President Clinton in relation to the Obama presidency and the Bush Jack wagons..

    graph:

    http://s3.amazonaws.com/readers/2011/02/20/obama-deficit_1.jpg

  73. SOUNDED TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE…

    ObamaCare Is Already Damaging Health Care
    ====================

    Many of its changes don’t kick in until 2014. But the law is forcing dramatic consolidation and reducing choice in the industry.

    online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704635704575604751500803046.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEADTop

    By LLOYD M. KRIEGER
    The Republicans who now control the House of Representatives hope to repeal or defund ObamaCare, but the law has already yielded profound, destructive changes that will not be undone by repeal or defunding alone. Active steps and new laws will be needed to repair the damage.

    The most significant change is a wave of frantic consolidation in the health industry. Because the law mandates that insurers accept all patients regardless of pre-existing conditions, insurers will not make money with their current premium and provider-payment structures. As a result, they have already started to raise premiums and cut payments to doctors and hospitals. Smaller and weaker insurers are being forced to sell themselves to larger entities.

    Doctors and hospitals, meanwhile, have decided that they cannot survive unless they achieve massive size—and fast. Six years ago, doctors owned more than two-thirds of U.S. medical practices, according to the Medical Group Management Association. By next year, nearly two-thirds will be salaried employees of larger institutions.

    Consolidation is not necessarily bad, as larger medical practices and hospital systems can create some efficiencies. But in the context of ObamaCare’s spiderweb of rules and regulations, consolidation is more akin to collectivization. It means that government bureaucrats will be able to impose controls with much greater ease.

    With far fewer and much larger entities to browbeat, all changes in Medicare and Medicaid policies will go through the entire system like a shock wave. There will be far fewer individual insurers, doctors, hospitals, device makers, drug manufacturers, nursing homes and other health-care players to resist.

    There is little mystery how the government will exercise its power. Choices will be limited. Pathways to expensive specialist care such as advanced radiology and surgery will decline. Cutting-edge devices and medicines will come into the system much more slowly and be used much less frequently.

    This is why simply defunding enforcement of the individual mandate and other upcoming directives will not be enough: Given all this consolidation, limits on treatment choices are already becoming hardwired into the system. Lawmakers must take concrete steps to stop and reverse this.

    On the provider end, this means enacting tax and other economic shields for insurers and providers that choose not to succumb to the financial pressure encouraging consolidation. It means unwinding all of the rules—about data compilation, reporting and compliance requirements, and information technology—designed to increase overhead to the point that only massive and easily regulated provider organizations can survive.

    Legislators will have to scrub the 2,700-page ObamaCare law line by line to remove all of the disincentives for medical practices, hospitals and others to remain smaller and independent.

    On the consumer end, reform means re-establishing choice at all levels of the system. Lawmakers at a minimum should change the individual mandate so that people can choose what type of coverage they buy. To do this, legislation has to ensure that all consumers have access to a menu of options for varying types of coverage, and that they are free to purchase policies across state lines. There should also be tax breaks for people who purchase medical care not covered by their insurance, so there is reasonable chance of escaping government-imposed limits on treatment choices.

    System-wide, collectivization will be dismantled only by limiting the power of government agencies to determine what care gets funded. That means new legislation to supersede Section 1311 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which requires herding everyone into “qualified plans” and forcing doctors (via fines, penalties and nonpayment) to follow care guidelines determined by the secretary of Health and Human Services.

    ObamaCare is already doing great damage, even years before its individual mandate and other controls kick in. Its systematic undoing is an urgent necessity.

  74. “Consolidation is not necessarily bad, as larger medical practices and hospital systems can create some efficiencies. But in the context of ObamaCare’s spiderweb of rules and regulations, consolidation is more akin to collectivization. It means that government bureaucrats will be able to impose controls with much greater ease.

    With far fewer and much larger entities to browbeat, all changes in Medicare and Medicaid policies will go through the entire system like a shock wave. There will be far fewer individual insurers, doctors, hospitals, device makers, drug manufacturers, nursing homes and other health-care players to resist.”
    ********
    Patients and Physicians would have a chance dealing with govt bureaucrats; they have no chance dealing the the “insurance” company networks. All of the doctors that fought “single payer” and let the insurance industry assume complete control are really going to get screwed. My cardiologist is part of a large group that just sold to the associated hospital. The differential in reimbursement between hospital and physician group forced the sale. The CEO of United Health was on TV a few months ago and said that they were going to tighten up on their “networks”. ie restrict choice in doctors and services.

    For doctors, selling the practice to a hospital, HMO, etc, initially looks good. Up front money, long term employment contracts, guaranteed salary, etc. What has happened is that the HMO, hospital, etc., after the three year salary guarantee is up, cuts salary by, say 40% for the remainder of the contract and the doctor is bound by a geographic “non-compete” clause. For patients and physicians, it’s the “network” that counts not the insurance.

  75. democrat1
    February 23rd, 2011 at 2:41 pm
    An explosive report from Ulsterman

    The term “Fu–ing moron” in describing Obama is said to have been used by Pelosi on more than one occasion in the presence of Emanuel.
    &&&&&&&

    I’m wresting with the missing letters… So far, I’ve come up with:

    Fusing moron: lame attempts to sell us on nuclear power

    fueling moron: can’t control gas prices

    futzing moron: ditherer-in-chief

    fussing moron: Mr. Indecision

    fumbling moron: can’t barely keep track of a piece of paper.

    functioning moron: With a teleprompter, he almost *seems* normal.

    furnishing moron: Was measuring the White House drapes in 2007, but STILL has no interest of getting anything done sitting at the desk in the Oval Office.

  76. Iranian vessels which crossed Suez Canal carry “advanced Hezbollah weapons” — Israel

    Military and Security 2/23/2011 12:10:00 PM

    GAZA, Feb 22 (KUNA) — The two Iranian naval ships which crossed the Suez Canal to the Mediterranean Tuesday morning are carrying “advanced Hezbollah weapons,” Maariv Israeli paper reported on Wednesday, citing sources.

    The sources told the paper, “Estimates indicate the two ships are carrying missiles of different range, rifles, ammunition, and night-vision gear… The voyage of the two ships is an Iranian attempt to go around the arms embargo on Hezbollah.” The paper also said that it is believed the voyage is an attempt on the part of the Iranians to “test the waters” with and gauge the responses of the Egyptian Supreme Military Council and its stance towards Tehran.
    Israel had yesterday stressed it was keeping close eye on the progress of the vessels, knew their location precisely, and kept close contact with US officials to exchange views and assess the situation.

    Israeli Premier Benyamin Netanyahu had earlier on Monday said Iran was trying to take advantage of the region’s instability to expand its influence.

    http://www.kuna.net.kw/NewsAgenciesPublicSite/ArticleDetails.aspx?id=2147372&Language=en

  77. Obama dispatches Clinton for talks on Libya….while Kerry stays around and briefs behind her back.

    Don’t think we dont know what you are up to Bambi.

  78. The president’s political machine worked in close coordination Thursday with state and national union officials to mobilize thousands of protesters to gather in Madison and to plan similar demonstrations in other state capitals

    ——–
    Yes, I have been getting a boat load of emails from them on this.

  79. As for Mayor Rahm.

    Bill Clinton campaigned for him.
    Bill Clinton braved a race card charge to campaign for him.
    Bill Clinton settles it.
    Yea Bill forever!

  80. Jeebus is this guy as dumb as a box of rocks:

    “A prank caller pretending to be billionaire conservative businessman David Koch was able to have a lengthy conversation with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker about his strategy to cripple public employee unions, the governor’s office confirmed Wednesday.

    On the call, Walker joked about bringing a baseball bat to a meeting with Democratic leaders, said it would “be outstanding” to be flown out to California by Koch for a good time after the battle is over, and said he expected the anti-union movement to spread across the country.
    (snip)
    “The governor’s plan would take away the ability of state and local public employees to collectively bargain for working conditions, benefits, or any other than their base salaries. Unions could not collect mandatory dues and would face a vote of its members every year to stay in existence.

    The plan has set off more than a week of demonstrations at the Capitol, and prompted Wisconsin Senate Democrats to flee the state to block its passage. Similar ideas are being pushed in some other states with Republican governors.

    The man pretending to be Koch said, “You’re the first domino.”

    “Yep, this is our moment,” Walker said.

    The brothers own Koch Industries, which is the largest privately-owned company in America and has significant operations in Wisconsin. Its political action committee gave $43,000 to Walker’s campaign, and donated heavily to the Republican Governors’ Association, which funded ads attacking Walker’s opponent in last year’s election. ..
    etc…etc…

    http://www.cnbc.com/id/41738815/

    I am shocked!!!! Gov Walker a sock puppet for the Koch brothers…a $43 billion net worth give the elites a bit of political leverage

  81. Moon,
    Are you saying Hillary is going personally to Libya, while the boys stay nice and warm and play footsie or what?

  82. World govts send planes, ships for Libya evacuation

    By Daren Butler

    ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Governments around the world scrambled on Wednesday to send planes and ships to evacuate their citizens from turmoil in Libya, whose leader Muammar Gaddafi has vowed to crush a revolt against his 41-year rule.

    Fears for the safety of foreigners were heightened after a Turkish worker was shot dead as he climbed a crane at a building site near the capital Tripoli, according to Turkish officials.

    Turkey, with 25,000 citizens in Libya, is mounting the biggest evacuation operation in its history, and 21 other governments have asked Ankara for help getting their nationals out, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu told a news conference.

    European Union states are evacuating some 10,000 EU citizens from Libya, a spokesman for the EU executive said during a European Commission news briefing.

    The U.S. State Department said a chartered ferry with room for about 600 passengers was due to leave Tripoli shortly for Malta. “We’re asking all U.S. citizens to head out to the ferry pier,” spokeswoman Megan Mattson told Reuters.

    Witnesses described scenes of chaos as foreigners tried to escape the violence. Italy said estimates that at 1,000 people had been killed in the uprising were credible.

    “The time at the airport turned into a nightmare, fights began to break out. Everyone is frantic,” said Adil Yasar, a Turk who arrived in Istanbul late on Tuesday, adding he and other evacuees had gone without food and water for two days.

    Some 3,000 Turks who found sanctuary in a soccer stadium in the eastern city of Benghazi, where the uprising began, set sail for home escorted by a Turkish navy frigate, while two French military planes brought 402 French nationals back to Paris.

    “We are very happy it’s over,” one passenger told Reuters after arriving at Paris’s Roissy-Charles de Gaulle airport.

    “It was very sudden. Five days ago, we felt really secure. One would not have said that the situation was going to degenerate so quickly.”

    Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan has warned Gaddafi’s government against taking “cruel steps” to crush the uprising, and called on all sides to ensure the security of foreigners.

    “VERY FRIGHTENING”

    Nationals of Lebanon, Syria and Germany, as well as Turkey, have joined thousands of Tunisians leaving Libya by its western land border, the International Organisation for Migration said.

    The IOM is trying to find new evacuation routes from Libya, which has an estimated 1.5 million foreign nationals, including people working there and those passing through.

    Libya borders Tunisia and Egypt, both of which have ousted long-time rulers in the past few weeks.

    Britain said on Tuesday it planned to send a charter plane to Libya to bring out Britons and was dispatching a Royal Navy frigate to waters off Libya in case it was needed.

    Germany urged all its citizens to leave the country, and Chancellor Angela Merkel described as ‘very frightening’ Gaddafi’s words that he was ready to die ‘a martyr’.

    With eastern regions breaking free of Gaddafi’s rule and deadly unrest hitting the capital Tripoli, Greece, Bulgaria, Spain, Italy, Japan, Russia and Saudi Arabia also sent or were planning to send planes for their nationals.

    Turkish construction company TAV was trying to arrange the evacuation of its 3,000 Thai and Vietnamese employees.

    A Dutch military plane evacuated 82 people from Libya late on Tuesday, repatriating 32 Dutch citizens and 50 people from other countries, including Belgium, Britain and the United States, the Dutch Foreign Affairs Ministry said on Wednesday.

    Brazil was sending a ship to pick up 180 workers and their families and take them to Malta, its foreign ministry said.

    A Ukrainian Il-76 military cargo plane was on its way to Tripoli to pick up 170 Ukrainians, including doctors, pilots and engineers who are working on contracts there.

    Greek passenger ships headed to Libya to collect Europeans and 15,000 Chinese and bring them back via the island of Crete.

    Croatia has evacuated 145 of its citizens and was trying to bring out another 140 Croat workers, its foreign minister said.

    Amid increasing chaos, and resignations by top Libyan officials protesting against Gaddafi’s crackdown, some flights had difficulty getting clearance to land or depart.

    A Bosnian and Serbian planes were awaiting permission from authorities in Tripoli to bring their citizens home, officials of both countries said.

    http://af.reuters.com/article/topNews/idAFJOE71M0EI20110223?sp=true

  83. Otrauma is sending President Hillary Clinton to Geneva next week.She is the only person that is welcomed by all world leaders.Emperor Bones is considered the Village Idiot by most.

  84. http://www.cnbc.com/id/41738815/

    I am shocked!!!! Gov Walker a sock puppet for the Koch brothers…a $43 billion net worth give the elites a bit of political leverage

    =================

    Someone found fine print in Walker’s bill allowing important no-bid sales of state property, presumably to Koch.

  85. SHV
    February 23rd, 2011 at 6:19 pm
    —————-

    Althouse has a different take on that prank call, one that does not make Walker so dumb or nefarious. I tend to believe her than the lefty blogger boys who are being melodramatic about it.

  86. Mrs.Smith,
    I looked over at Drudge…so they have fired on Israel..and who do we have in charge…Dumbo…

    Well Admin is right telling Hillary go ahead and stay we got your back…imagine if she wasn’t there…we would have old lantern jaw and that would be better than Jarrett and Mo. Geez Louise!

  87. Confloyd- look in your phone under the “market” app

    then go to ‘news’ if the app isn’t showing..
    type Drudge Report into the search box.
    and download into your phone

    The app is free..

  88. admin:

    If you get an app for Big Pink we can read the blog
    when we’re not in front of our puters.

    I have read the blog on my phone thru the internet.
    posting is a little tricky.. WP gets suspicious..

  89. gonzotx
    February 23rd, 2011 at 4:34 pm
    BigCatLover
    February 23rd, 2011 at 11:33 am
    Here is the poll referenced above about favoring collective bargaining for unions.
    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2011-02-22-poll-public-unions-wisconsin_N.htm
    ****

    I was reading the Milwaukee Journal and they said they felt the questions were probably skewed.
    *******************************
    If you go to the link and go down the page near the bottom, you’ll see the actual poll with the questions asked. Maybe the Milwaukee Journal should not speculate, but should find out for sure.

  90. Links at the site.

    http://www.alternet.org/news/149986/a_major_victory_in_the_workers'_uprising_as_indiana_gopers_pull_union-busting_bill%3B_republican_govs_defend_moves_made_by_dem_lawmakers/
    Yesterday, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) defended his state’s vanished senators, saying their fleeing is “perfectly legitimate“:

    Daniels, a Republican, said earlier Tuesday he supported the Democrats’ right to deny Republicans a quorum to do business and the rights of labor unions to protest at the Statehouse.

    “The activities of today are perfectly legitimate part of the process,” he said. “Even the smallest minority, and that’s what we’ve heard from in the last couple days, has every right to express the strength of its views and I salute those who did.”

    Today, appearing on conservative radio host Laura Igraham’s show, Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) — who has been one of Walker’s most reliable defenders and whom Walker says he talks to “everyday” — refused to condmen the senators’ actions or Daniels’ comments, saying to a displeased Ingraham, “If you were there, you might end up walking out the chamber too!”

  91. Mrs.Smith,
    I will do it sooner or later….filing the court papers has really taken out of me today….in fact, I’m having a little chest pain….it could be my supper though….at least I’m at the hospital, LOL!

  92. Here’s the cite on the no-bid sales in Walker’s bill. (I haven’t verified it.)

    http://legis.wisconsin.gov/2011/data/JR1SB-11.pdf

    Bottom of Page 23:

    SECTION 44. 16.896 of the statutes is created to read:
    16.896 Sale or contractual operation of state−owned heating, cooling,
    and power plants. (1) Notwithstanding ss. 13.48 (14) (am) and 16.705 (1), the

    department may sell any state−owned heating, cooling, and power plant or may

    contract with a private entity for the operation of any such plant, with or without

    solicitation of bids, for any amount that the department determines to be in the best

    interest of the state. Notwithstanding ss. 196.49 and 196.80, no approval or

    certification of the public service commission is necessary for a public utility to

    purchase, or contract for the operation of, such a plant, and any such purchase is

    considered to be in the public interest and to comply with the criteria for certification

    of a project under s. 196.49 (3) (b).

  93. I don’t have a dog in this fight and I could care less what happens to Walker but I would not give an inch to the lefty loons trying to make hay out of this. Lawyerly and logical.. Althouse writing:

    Walker opponents would love to make something of this phone call, but all they have are a few over-the-line things the Koch impersonator said like “You gotta crush that union.” Walker just ignores that stuff and goes on with his standard points, which is probably the standard strategy that most politicians use when people interact with them.

    You could say that it’s bad that the prankster got through, but that shows that he’s willing to talk to a lot of people and also that David Koch isn’t a frequent caller who gets special treatment and is recognized by his caller ID and his voice and manner of speaking.

    Doesn’t this prank call prove that Scott Walker is not close to Koch? He doesn’t recognize his voice! He doesn’t drift into a more personal style of speech. He treats him like a generic political supporter.

  94. BCL,
    My company has that site blocked, but I will look when I get home…I’m OK….just a little weird feeling…LOL!

  95. confloyd
    February 23rd, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    Mrs.Smith,

    Anything to do with Court is a stress inducer for sure.

    The aspirin is good advise, confloyd.

    Take it anyway- can’t hurt!

  96. Jeeze, can’t Hillary video conference to these batshit countries instead of being a target? I don’t want to risk her life for anything…or anybody.

    BarryBoy needs to get his butt on a plane, he knows how to bow to those dictator bros…maybe play some hoops with Daffy in his tent.

  97. Has he really sent Hillary to Libya??? That can’t be, what’s he trying to do make her another Bhutto???

    I can’t believe she went? God I hope she will be OK…that’s a madman over there!

  98. What is she going to do personally put handcuffs on Gadaffy or what…why can’t we just send Obama, he’s already got a scar on his head….and there’s air in it anyways….he can do it!

  99. Gadhafi controls $32 billion, turned down Madoff

    By Robert Windrem

    NBC News investigative producer for special projects

    Moammar Gadhafi’s regime controls $32 billion in liquid assets around the world, including hundreds of millions of dollars invested in U.S. banks, according to a confidential cable written by the U.S. ambassador to Libya last year. The leaked diplomatic message was distributed through WikiLeaks.

    The same cable reported that Libya had been approached by two men accused of running huge Ponzi schemes, Bernard Madoff and Allen Stanford, but had resisted offers from them to invest Libyan funds with them. Madoff is serving time in a U.S. prison; Stanford has not been convicted of a crime and is awaiting trial.

    The cable is entitled “Technology of Tourism: Head of Libyan Investment Authority Discusses Opportunities for US Business in Libya,” and was written Jan. 28, 2010, by Ambassador Gene A. Cretz, after a meeting with Mohamed Layas, the head of the LIA, Libya’s sovereign wealth fund. Sovereign wealth funds are the vehicles used by Middle East and other governments to invest oil wealth. The LIA, according to U.S. intelligence, is controlled by Gadhafi’s regime.

    “Layas asserted that the LIA has USD 32 billion in liquidity, and noted that several American banks are each managing USD 300-500 million of the LIA’s funds,” according to the cable.

    Cretz also quotes Layas as saying, “We have USD 32 billion in liquidity, mostly in bank deposits that will give us good long-term returns.” Layas explained that beyond the hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. banks, not further identified, Layas said the LIA has extensive investments in the United Kingdom.

    Cretz wrote that Layas “said that the LIA has an office in London and preferred doing business there rather than in the United States, due to the ‘ease of doing business’ in the UK and relatively ‘uncomplicated tax system.’ He noted that the LIA’s primary investments are in London, in banking and residential and commercial real estate.”

    The LIA’s best-publicized investment was in a Canadian oil company, Verenex. Libya paid $316 million for the company in 2009.

    However, the Libyan claimed he had avoided being involved in two Ponzi schemes, those run by Madoff and Stanford. Layas denied press reports that LIA had invested $100 million with Stanford, but admitted being approached by both Stanford and Madoff.

    “Stanford had approached the LIA in the middle of his crisis, offering a 7-8% share in his investment scheme, but Layas had refused,” Cretz wrote. “Layas also mentioned having been previously approached by Bernard Madoff about an investment opportunity, ‘but we did not accept’.”

    Read here:

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41731353/ns/world_news-the_new_york_times/

  100. Gadhafi controls $32 billion, turned down Madoff

    By Robert Windrem

    NBC News investigative producer for special projects

    Moammar Gadhafi’s regime controls $32 billion in liquid assets around the world, including hundreds of millions of dollars invested in U.S. banks, according to a confidential cable written by the U.S. ambassador to Libya last year. The leaked diplomatic message was distributed through WikiLeaks.

    The same cable reported that Libya had been approached by two men accused of running huge Ponzi schemes, Bernard Madoff and Allen Stanford, but had resisted offers from them to invest Libyan funds with them. Madoff is serving time in a U.S. prison; Stanford has not been convicted of a crime and is awaiting trial.

    The cable is entitled “Technology of Tourism: Head of Libyan Investment Authority Discusses Opportunities for US Business in Libya,” and was written Jan. 28, 2010, by Ambassador Gene A. Cretz, after a meeting with Mohamed Layas, the head of the LIA, Libya’s sovereign wealth fund. Sovereign wealth funds are the vehicles used by Middle East and other governments to invest oil wealth. The LIA, according to U.S. intelligence, is controlled by Gadhafi’s regime.

    “Layas asserted that the LIA has USD 32 billion in liquidity, and noted that several American banks are each managing USD 300-500 million of the LIA’s funds,” according to the cable.

    Cretz also quotes Layas as saying, “We have USD 32 billion in liquidity, mostly in bank deposits that will give us good long-term returns.” Layas explained that beyond the hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. banks, not further identified, Layas said the LIA has extensive investments in the United Kingdom.

    Cretz wrote that Layas “said that the LIA has an office in London and preferred doing business there rather than in the United States, due to the ‘ease of doing business’ in the UK and relatively ‘uncomplicated tax system.’ He noted that the LIA’s primary investments are in London, in banking and residential and commercial real estate.”

    The LIA’s best-publicized investment was in a Canadian oil company, Verenex. Libya paid $316 million for the company in 2009.

    However, the Libyan claimed he had avoided being involved in two Ponzi schemes, those run by Madoff and Stanford. Layas denied press reports that LIA had invested $100 million with Stanford, but admitted being approached by both Stanford and Madoff.

    “Stanford had approached the LIA in the middle of his crisis, offering a 7-8% share in his investment scheme, but Layas had refused,” Cretz wrote. “Layas also mentioned having been previously approached by Bernard Madoff about an investment opportunity, ‘but we did not accept’.”

    Read here:

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41731353/ns/world_news-the_new_york_times/

  101. confloyd-

    ABM90 posted Hillary is going to Geneva tonight or tomorrow..

    Libya..if only we could Fedx BO and MO 😯

  102. Well I’m glad its Geneva…you never know where they will make her go while the boyz play tiddly-winks with each other….Mo’s gone too…so BO is prolly having a great time! LOL!

  103. So once again Hillary has to take the flack for bozo’s less than zero leadership skills…

    Egyptian Youth to Clinton: Where Was the Support?

    February 23, 2011

    Egypt’s young people, fresh off of toppling a 30-year dictatorship through the help of social media, used that technology to grill Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Wednesday, asking her why the U.S. didn’t express support for the revolution sooner.

    “The attitude of the U.S. during the Egyptian revolution was to support the Egyptian regime first,” read one of the nearly 6,500 questions, videos and audio files users submitted through the Egyptian social media website, Masrawy. “Then, when the revolution turned successful, the U.S. switched sides and supported the Egyptian youth. Why?”

    Clinton disputed that notion, saying that the U.S. wanted to make sure its support didn’t lead to an outbreak of violence.

    “We wanted to see the aspirations of the Egyptian people, particularly young people, realized. And then we advocated from the very beginning for a reform process that would lead to an Egyptian model of democracy,” she said.

    “So I think that we were walking a balance, because we wanted to be sure that our message did not push anyone into doing something that we disagreed with, namely violence, which we tried to, in every way possible, prevent,” she said.

    The Obama administration drew heavy fire for its cautious response to the 18-day revolution, when it struggled to balance its support for the protesters with protecting U.S. interests, including a peace treaty between Egypt and Israel that President Hosni Mubarak maintained during his 29 years in power.

    The U.S. has taken a similar tack in responding to the other popular uprising spreading across the Middle East and North Africa. Clinton’s answers came just hours before President Obama announced he was dispatching her to Geneva for international talks aimed at stopping the violence in Libya, the latest battleground.

    Another comment from the Egyptian youth on Wednesday criticized U.S. foreign policy for embracing oppressive regimes and treating them like true democracies.

    “The United States has relations with many countries whose values we do not always agree with and whose actions we often criticize,” Clinton responded. “But we do have relationships with China, with Russia, with Egypt in the past that are very complicated and which operate on several levels at once.”

    Clinton added that the U.S. continued to criticize these regimes like Mubark’s publicly and privately even as the U.S. helped maintain the Egypt-Israel peace treaty that she believes saved lives.

    Clinton warned that democracy is not just an election, citing Iran where citizens continue to be denied freedom or human rights in the wake of its recent election.

    “So what Egypt is now grappling with is how to have a sustainable, enduring democracy, where, yes, the rights of minorities are protected, the rights of women are protected, you have an independent judiciary, an independent and free media, including social media, where the economic shackles are thrown off so that young people can start businesses without having to pay off bribes to government officials,” she said.

    “There’s so much now to be done, and the United States stands ready to assist in every way possible,” she said.

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/02/23/egyptian-youth-clinton-support/

  104. In the state of Washington, the NBC affiliate (KING) has done a scathing report on the ferry system which provides a marine highway vital to commerce. The reporter Susan Frane is a muckraker of the worst order, and posing as a consumer rights activist has vilified the union when management is equally at fault.

    There is a bargaining history which this ignorant woman is oblivious to. In 1981 there State tried to cut the wages of ferry workers to coincide with those of other state employees. This may sound reasonable, but the fact the relevant standard of comparison is ferry workers in other states on the west coast, and compared to them, the Washington State ferry workers are underpaid. Whereupon the International Longshoreman’s Union called a three day strike on all ports on the West Coast and the matter was settled. The settlement called for the creation of a blue ribbon panel comprised of the usual suspect, with a mandate to provide an alternative mechanism for dispute resolution since strikes would paralyze commerce.

    The panel recommended and the parties agreed to preserve collective bargaining, to provide for interest arbitration if the parties reached impasse in bargaining and to create a special grievance body called the Marine Employees Commission, to develop a body of law and expertise to resolve grievances in a just and expeditious manner.

    The Democratic Governor of this state is Christine Gregoire. Previously, she was Attorney General and was completely incompetent. In one case she let a filing deadline expire and it cost the state almost $8 million dollars. During the campaign she had a pay to play scheme with the local Indian tribes. Not surprisingly, she was and still is a rabid supporter of Obama, and she stabbed Hillary in the back. To say I do not like her would be an understatement.

    Gregoire has taken steps to abolish the Marine Employees Commission which is a violation of the 1981 settlement agreement between the State and the Union. Also, she has a fellow democrat in the senate who has introduced a bill which will eliminate collective bargaining. Gregoire may or may not sign that bill if it passes. But for now she is using it as a hammer against the unions so she can rebut the muckraker–and for no other reason.

    There will be a secret meeting tomorrow with the International Longshoreman and Warehouseman’s Union to discuss how they might protect the Inland Boatman’s Union from the Dimocrats who are conspiring to throw them to the wolves. One of the possible tactics would be another coast wide strike, which would drive the employers association–Pacific Maritime Association up the wall. The Union leadership in 1981 was strong. Today, less so. But if they did shut down the ports on the West Coast it could do irreparable damage to our economy.

    Why? Because our benighted elites have given away our manufacturing base to China. As a result, those goods are manufactured in China and then pass through west coast ports to get to their final destination. This gives the International Longshoreman and Warehouseman’s Union a choke hold over this country which is second to none. You can be certain that the people advising Obama are well aware of this and they may attempt to orchestrate a good guy bad guy role where he saves the country from a strike. If he does that the union will be made to look like the bad guy. The problem is they are dumb enough to fall for it. They are good guys but too trusting of the dimocratic party.

  105. He treats him like a generic political supporter..
    *********
    Possibly… but follow the money. The Koch’s gave candidate Walker >$43,000 in direct campaign funds and allegedly several million in indirect money. He also got money from Koch financed “Americans for Prosperity”, run by Tim Phillips a former associate of Jack Abramoff. The Koch’s have significant financial interests in WI, including oil, coal, paper manufacturing, etc. all of which would benefit from Walker’s intent to ease environmental regs. I also suspect that the Kochs may benefit from “section 44” of Senate Bill 11 with the purpose of:

    “16.896 Sale or contractual operation of state−owned heating, cooling, 2 and power plants. (1) Notwithstanding ss. 13.48 (14) (am) and 16.705 (1), the 3 department may sell any state−owned heating, cooling, and power plant or may contract with a private entity for the operation of any such plant, with or without 5 solicitation of bids, for any amount that the department determines to be in the best 6 interest of the state.”

    The plot sickens…

  106. I also suspect that the Kochs may benefit from “section 44″ of Senate Bill 11 with the purpose of:
    …. with or without 5 solicitation of bids, for any amount that the department determines to be in the best 6 interest of the state.”

    The plot sickens…

    ==============

    I wish the imposter had asked more specific questions….

  107. A close friend and former business partner called me this morning to talk about the political miasma. I read him the Hedges comment posted above and he finally admitted to me that it was a mistake to vote for Obama and he was not as sophisticated on politics as he thought the was. (He then launched into his familiar attack on McCain, Bush et al). He then said you know Bohener–did you know he wants to defund the NLRB? I told him no, but I think I know why. With the addition of this Becker character now has a union majority, which is not surprising in and of itself. But the problem that many business interests see is a redefinition of the legal criteria for independent contractor and a corresponding conversion of hundreds of thousands of workers into employees. That would create a huge economic windfall to the states, particularly California which is starved for revenues. The courts would be the final arbiter, but if Obama is able to stack the courts with legal bots who look into their conscience instead of the constitution, this could well happen. Just to give one example, every FedEx air driver is an employee, whereas every FedEx ground driver is an independent contractor. Fred Smith saves billions of dollars through that arrangement, and that is no different than other employers.

  108. Koch Industries
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Koch Industries

    Type Private
    Industry Conglomerate
    Founded 1940
    Headquarters Wichita, Kansas, USA
    Area served Worldwide
    Key people Charles G. Koch (Chairman, CEO, & 42% owner)
    David H. Koch (Executive VP, & 42% owner)
    Products Petroleum
    Chemicals
    Energy
    Asphalt
    Natural gas
    Plastics
    Fibers
    Minerals
    Fertilizers
    Ranching
    Pulp and paper
    Finance
    Commodities trading[1]
    Revenue US$100 billion (2009)[citation needed]
    Employees 80,000 (2009)[1]
    Website Kochind.com

    Koch Industries, Inc. /ˈkoʊk/) is an American private energy conglomerate based in Wichita, Kansas, with subsidiaries involved in manufacturing, trading and investments. Koch also owns Invista, Georgia-Pacific, Flint Hills Resources, Koch Pipeline, Koch Fertilizer, Koch Minerals and Matador Cattle Company.

    Koch companies are involved in core industries such as the manufacturing, refining and distribution[1] of petroleum, chemicals, energy, fiber, intermediates and polymers, minerals, fertilizers, pulp and paper, chemical technology equipment, ranching,[2] finance, commodities trading, as well as other ventures and investments.

    In 2008, Forbes called it the second largest privately held company in the United States (after Cargill) with an annual revenue of about $98 billion,[3][4][5] down from the largest in 2006. If Koch Industries were a public company in 2007, it would rank about 16 in the Fortune 500.[6]

    Fred C. Koch, for whom Koch Industries, Inc. is named, co-founded the company in 1940 and developed an innovative crude oil refining process.[7] His sons, Charles G. Koch, chairman of the board and chief executive officer, and David H. Koch, executive vice president, are principal owners of the company after they bought out their brothers, Frederick and William, for $1.1 billion in 1983.[8] Charles and David H. Koch each own 42% of Koch Industries, and Charles has stated that the company will publicly offer shares “literally over my dead body”.[3

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koch_Industries

  109. “Not surprisingly, she was and still is a rabid supporter of Obama, and she stabbed Hillary in the back.”
    ********
    I was re-reading Justice Holmes’ dissent in “Hammer” and his contempt for the Court’s majority pretty much reflects how I feel about Rethugs and Dims.

  110. he Obama administration drew heavy fire for its cautious response to the 18-day revolution, when it struggled to balance its support for the protesters with protecting U.S. interests, including a peace treaty between Egypt and Israel that President Hosni Mubarak maintained during his 29 years in power
    —————————————————-
    Bullshit. It was not a cautious approach. It was an inconsistent one. One minute Obama wanted Mubarak to step down immediately the next minute he wanted him to stay. Moreover, Messiah Obama failed to anticipate and make provision for this contingency. Nial Ferguson is crystal clear on this, despite the revisionist history we see from big media. It is like what Demonthenes told the Athenian Senate, and it has not changed since Barack’s initial encounter with the Somolian pirates:

    “You take your marching orders from the enemy. You have never formed any plan of your own, never foreseen any event until it happens . . . our business is not to speculate on what the future will bring but to be certain that it will bring disaster unless you face the facts and consent to do your duty” (First Philippic, from The Conduct of War, by General Fuller).

  111. I was re-reading Justice Holmes’ dissent in “Hammer” and his contempt for the Court’s majority pretty much reflects how I feel about Rethugs and Dims.
    ———————–
    You have plenty of company. They represent everyone with money–everyone EXCEPT the American People.

  112. I was re-reading Justice Holmes’ dissent in “Hammer” and his contempt for the Court’s majority pretty much reflects how I feel about Rethugs and Dims
    ————————–
    Switch in time saves 9. And some justices do evolve in their thinking. As you know.

  113. wbboei – just a little backstory. There used to be one company, Federal Express. Customers started the habit of calling it Fedex. Federal Express decided to branch out into other types of deliveries to compete with UPS (who did ground). So Federal Express officially became Fedex and branched into 5 companies: Fedex Express (the original, overnight company), Fedex Home Delivery (I’ve never understood that one, every truck goes to people’s homes!), a couple of others I can’t remember, and lastly, Fedex Ground – they bought out another ground company (DHL? I can’t remember).

    But the policy of that original ground company used drivers who owned their own trucks and sort of worked for themselves. So when Fedex Ground bought them, they kept the same system, although there was talk that it might just be temporarily. But maybe Fred Smith saw it was fiscally advantageous to him to keep that branch of the company as he found it. Hopefully it’s advantageous to the workers as well, as they have to pay their own truck insurance, have to pay for the repairs, have to pay for the gas they put in it, make the truck payments if it’s not yet paid off, etc.

  114. from pm317’s link

    “This is a scheduling issue. The president will meet with Secretary of State Clinton this afternoon. We will have something to say out of that meeting. If possible, the President will speak this afternoon or tomorrow,” White House press secretary Jay Carney said of President Obama’s lack of response to the crisis in Libya.

    Posted on February 23, 2011

    Ah ha! He had to hear “what she said” before he could parrot it!!!!!! It’s the debates, all over again! ROFL

  115. Hopefully it’s advantageous to the workers as well, as they have to pay their own truck insurance, have to pay for the repairs,

    ==============

    That sounds a little risky for a company that wants to guarantee delivery by a certain date and time. What if the owner has been skimping on the repairs and it breaks down on the road?

  116. wbboei
    February 23rd, 2011 at 11:39 pm
    Koch Industries
    ———————————-

    For decades, Charles G. Koch has been a leading member of the Mont Pelerin Society, and he shaped the Cato Institute as a Mont Pelerin Society outpost. The Koches’ three foundations have put $15 million into Cato since 1986. Charles Koch exemplifies the interconnections of this single apparatus: He chairs two leading pro-Social-Security-privatization groups, the Citizens for a Sound Economy, and the Institute for Humane Studies at George Mason University. (Jan. ’05 report)

    ————–

    Senator Lieberman was DLC chairman in the mid-1990s. He made sharp attacks on President Clinton during the failed Republican drive to impeach the President. As Clinton’s second term drew to a close, the DLC scurried to position itself for control of the post-Clinton Democratic Party. In October 2000, the DLC held a crucial fundraising event. Michael Lewan, an Enron lobbyist and the chief of staff for Lieberman’s Vice Presidential race, arranged this fundraiser with representatives of Koch Industries, the oil company which co-founded the John Birch Society, founded the Cato Institute, and sponsored the Reason Foundation and much of the radical right agenda in America. Koch vice president Richard Fink went on the PPI board of directors, and poured Koch money into the DLC to make a new Democratic Party. (July ’03 report)

    ————–

    separately,

    http://www.larouchepub.com/eiw/public/2005/eirv32/eirv32n04.pdf
    pages 53 – 56
    Cato Institute: Predatory Clique Leads the Attack on Social Security

    —————-

    Much more, mostly in PDF form, using this search:
    Koch Industries site:larouchepub.com

  117. The problem with astroturfing is not mobilizing activities or exchanging opinions… the problem is that they sow fear and distort where most Americans are on issues.

    With enough money, you can pay a team to stir everything into a muddy mess, subverting all clarity and progress, all negotiation and cooperation, and proceed merrily with your greed or insane agenda.

    If that is not evil, nothing is.

  118. I dont think Gaddafi has got long.

    Al Jazeera: Major General Suleiman Mahmoud Suleiman, Commander of the Armed Forces in eastern Libya joins the anti-Gaddafi protesters

    Al Jazeera: Brigadier Ali Huwaidi, Chief of Security in Benghazi resigns & joins the protesters.

    Al Jazeera: Reuters: Anti Gaddafi protesters take control of the town of Zwara (110km/68 miles west of Tripoli. Population 45,000)

  119. I knew his son was lying when he said his father had ten thousand soldiers coming from everywhere to kill protesters.

    yeah, right!

  120. The Hand of Koch over Wisconsin: The American Legislative Exchange

    The current crisis has Koch’s fingerprints all over it. Walker is one of a whole stable of reactionary politicians, including Washington primitives like Senator DeMint, who are controlled by Koch.

    The assault on state workers nationwide is being coordinated by the American Legislative Exchange (ALEC), which aims at busting state unions. Walker’s Tea Party supporters, such as they arte, were bussed in by Americans for Prosperity, another group controlled by Koch.

  121. Wisconsin Dems’ filibuster halts anti-union bill

    AP) MADISON – Democrats kept the Wisconsin Assembly up overnight with a droning filibuster in another desperate attempt to block the Republican governor’s bold plan to strip public sector workers of nearly all of their bargaining rights.

    The debate marked the first movement in days in what has become a high-stakes game of political chicken between Democratic lawmakers and Gov. Scott Walker. The governor says the bill is needed to help solve the state’s looming budget deficit, but Democrats see it as an all-out assault on unions, their staunchest campaign ally.

    Republicans control both the Assembly and Senate, but Democratic senators have blocked a vote in their chamber by fleeing to Illinois. Meanwhile, tens of thousands of demonstrators have descended on the state Capitol in monumental protests that entered their ninth day Wednesday.

    The Assembly began debate around noon Tuesday, with lawmakers coming to the floor under heavy guard as protesters in the rotunda cheered and banged on buckets and bongo drums. Democrats began introducing dozens of amendments that would and gave drawn-out, rambling speeches criticizing the bill. A vote didn’t appear likely until well into Wednesday, perhaps later.

    “Can you hear that?” Rep. Tamara Grigsby, D-Milwaukee, screamed into her microphone. “Can you hear the cheers? Can you hear the chants? Can you hear the voices of the people who elected you? How can you not hear that?”

    Republicans sat mostly in silence as the debate dragged into the wee hours, though tempers flared when two Democrats lashed out at Republican lawmakers and aides for laughing at them during the debate.

    “This is not a game! We’re dealing with people’s lives! This isn’t funny!” Rep. Andy Jorgensen shouted in the chamber, his face red. “I haven’t laughed in a long time, especially not on a day like this!”

    At one point, Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald, R-Horicon, stood and told Democrats the state can’t afford collective bargaining. Walker’s budget, which the governor plans to introduce in the coming weeks, will contain such deep cuts to local governments they won’t be able to survive if public workers don’t make concessions, Fitzgerald said.

    Democrats introduced 42 amendments, about half after midnight, and promised more were on the way. When Democrats offered to adjourn shortly before 3 a.m., Republicans — who easily have enough votes to pass the bill once they dispose of the Democrats’ amendments — refused.

    “We understand. You don’t like the bill. We get it,” Rep. Joel Kleefisch, R-Oconomowoc said. “(But) at the end of the day the vote has got to come, folks.”

    The bill would require most public sector workers, from local librarians to state biologists, to contribute more to their pensions and health insurance. It also would strip them of their right to collectively bargain anything except salaries. Walker has said the plan is crucial to solving a $137 million deficit in the state’s current budget and a $3.6 billion shortfall in the 2011-13 budget.

    The state’s public unions have said they would agree to the financial concessions, but won’t give up their bargaining rights.

    Meanwhile, the demonstrations have left the Capitol a mess. The normally sparkling floors are smeared with dirt, protesters’ signs cover the marble walls, air mattresses and blankets lay in hallways and state troopers guard every corridor, limiting movement in the building.

    Similar battles over union rights are also taking shape in other states. In Indiana, Democrats walked out of the House on Tuesday, blocking a GOP-backed bill against mandatory union dues. They have threatened not to return until Republican lawmakers deliver assurances that they won’t move forward on labor legislation.

    A similar debate in Ohio drew thousands of union protesters Tuesday, prompting officials there to lock the doors to the Statehouse.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/02/23/politics/main20035228.shtml?tag=dis

  122. …a provision that would allow the sale of the state’s public utilities without a bidding process or public oversight.

    …would allow the state to sell or contract out the operation of heating, cooling, and power plants without a bidding process and without consulting the state’s independent utility regulator.

    The bill also employs “emergency” powers that would allow the governor’s appointed health secretary to redefine the foundations of the state’s Medicaid program, Badgercare, ranging from eligibility to premiums, with only passive legislative review.

    The bill, would allow the state Department of Health Services to “change any Medical Assistance law, for any reason, at any time, and potentially without notice or public hearing… in addition to eliminating notice and publication requirements, [the changes] would leave the emergency rules in effect without any requirement to make permanent rules and without any time limit.”

    Why do that in a bill that’s being rushed through the legislature in a week’s time?

    http://www.nationaljournal.com/is-scott-walker-s-budget-plan-a-bait-and-switch–20110223

  123. Slipping on that banana peel has been a talent Obama has consistently shown a great adeptness and innate ability to avoid, twisting and turning catching air flying high above the clouds
    avoiding any connection to corruption… Has he stepped on a tack somewhere- has that tack pierced a hole in those magical Air Jordans? May-be?
    ________________________

    House members probe $535-million loan guarantee by Obama Energy Dept. for Solyndra solar plant

    Here’s a sad and revealing chronology about a U.S. president named Obama, a California company named Solyndra and, now, a congressional investigation into the administration’s loan guarantee of $535 million in a failed green energy project that was supposed to create jobs.

    But it didn’t.

    At enormous taxpayer cost.

    The story starts in the early 2009 days of the Democratic administration of Barack Obama and the hastily written economic stimulus legislation passed by the whopping Democratic congressional majorities of Sen. Harry Reid of Nevada and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco.

    You’ll remember it was very important to pass the $787-billion economic stimulus bill as quickly as possible then to keep the 7.1% national unemployment rate from rising further. Today, it’s 9%. So, that didn’t work out well, either.

    Remember President Obama went to the Caterpillar plant in his home state of Illinois and said ….

    … the worthy stimulus funds would enable the heavy-equipment giant to start hiring again? And Caterpillar’s president said, well, no, not really. He foresaw more layoffs first. But the urgent flow of news moved on because it was very important to get that borrowed money moving out the door as quickly as possible.
    Back in those days, the term “shovel-ready” wasn’t a joke. It was a promise to put this money to work creating jobs ASAP so Obama could get on with the business of his beloved healthcare bill.

    Obama had the idea that since he was going to spend three-quarters of a trillion dollars anyway, why not put a fair chunk of that dough into kick-starting green energy projects, which often need subsidies because they’re still not economically practical to work on their own? Potentially win-win. Or not.

    On Sept. 9 that year in a special closed-circuit TV program for the groundbreaking of Solyndra’s new plant, Vice President Joe “Recovery Summer” Biden announced the signing of the $535-million federal loan guarantee, the Energy Department’s first under the stimulus plan.

    Joe said, “These jobs are the jobs that are going to define the 21st century that will allow America to compete and to lead like we did in the 20th century.”

    The money would finance construction of a Solyndra facility, creating 3,000 construction jobs and 1,000 full-time positions in the modern plant making photovoltaic solar panels.

    Because it was such a promising venture, Obama himself visited Fremont eight months later (see photos here and video report here) to hail his administration’s decision to move in that direction.

    The president said the facility was “leading the way to a brighter and more prosperous future” and the plant was “a testament to American ingenuity and the best workers in the world.”

    He said high-tech facilities like Solyndra would help “lay a new foundation for lasting growth.”

    Then came last November, the day after the midterm elections when everyone was focused on the historic shift to Republican control of the House. Solyndra announced then that not only was it not going to create those 1,000 full-time jobs so eagerly hailed by Obama and Biden, but it also was going to close an older factory and actually lay off 175 full- or part-time workers.

    That left U.S. taxpayers holding the financial bag for nearly three-quarters of that loan guarantee, about $390 million.

    But now Fred Upton and Cliff Stearns, chairmen of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and Oversight Subcommittee, have been examining the company’s financials and the possibility of waste and fraud. Since its 2005 founding, it seems that Solyndra has never made a profit and its own auditor had raised serious questions that did not slow or stop the immense guarantee’s approval by the Obama administration.

    Last week Upton and Stearns wrote Energy Secretary Steven Chu. The Republicans said:

    While we understand the purpose of the Loan Guarantee Program is to help private companies engaging in clean energy products to obtain financing by providing loan guarantees, subsequent events raise questions if Solyndra was the right candidate to receive a loan guarantee in excess of half a billion dollars.
    Oh, one other thing: The majority owner of Solyndra is George Kaiser. He’s an Oklahoma billionaire. He was also a bundler, a major fundraiser, for the 2008 presidential campaign of Barack Obama and Joe Biden.

    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/washington/2011/02/solyndra-obama-biden-stimulus-waste.html

  124. Transparency.. thats what we were promised. Could it be Obama meant he would be soooo transparent he can prove we would be unable to see him involved in approving corrupt business dealings on behalf of the US government’s Clean Energy programs? Is that smell lofting in the air, a whiff of kickbacks?…
    ______________________________

    (ht/to The Man)

    Who is a bad guy at DOE?:

    Steven Chu works for the Nuclear industry and steers support away from wind, hydrogen, electric and geothermal. He is a master of
    the delay tactic. His utter refusal to meet with reform groups or even members of Congress regarding process and ethics issues and
    his adversarial approach to OMB requests shows what he is about: Protecting his nuclear power friends.

    Steve Rattner was the head of the car funding program and has already been charged with criminal actions. He made the backroom deals with Detroit.

    Lachlan Seward ran the cut-offs on all DOE funding to make sure only his Detroit friends got money.

    Matt Rogers and Steve Spinner were Steven Chu’s friends from McKinsey Consulting who helped keep the lid on the insider deals and make sure only the Chu “friendlies” got the money.

    Steve Silver was brought in as a “fake VC” to pretend like he was going to fix things but he just serves as a figurehead to sign off
    on corrupt deals flowing past him.

    Phil Tobin manipulates the Loan Gaurantee program to benefit Nuclear friends and lock out others.

    Rod O’Conner conduits funding & support, for Mr. Chu, away from wind, hydrogen, electric and geothermal.

    Cathy Zoi supported the corrupt administration efforts.

    Kristina Johnson ran the paperwork for the corrupt administration efforts.

    Scott Harris keeps the contracts and legal reviews steered towards oil and nuckear friends and avoids investigation requests.

    James Markowsky is a direct conduit for the oil companies.

    Warren F. “Pete” Miller Jr is a direct conduit for Steven Chu’s nuclear agenda.

    Cynthia Anderson, DOE-EM’s head of stimulus work who ran corrupt funding through the Savannah project.

  125. Can we find 10 honest men in this ball of snakes at mating season?

    Laissez les bon temps rouler
    ________________________

    Tesla Motors is the next one to get investigated.

    Not only does Tesla’s funding/lobby history duplicate every red flag that Solyndra had, Tesla’s issues are 10 times worse. Feinstein and Pelosi are deeply involved in manipulating funding for Tesla, Tesla’s financials show that it can never make a profit with the obligations it has, they show it can never compete with the Nissan Leaf and the rush of cheaper, better cars and that DOE “fixers” knew this from Day 1.

    Sen. Bingamans staff slid Tesla and Fisker through and that is probably why he is quitting, he knows the investigations will come down on him.

  126. Economics 101: Budget Cuts and Fiscal Austerity Lead to Bigger Deficits, Not Balanced Budgets

    Austerity must be rejected not only for the humanitarian reason that it kills people, but also because it fails in its own narrow terms of moving the budget towards balance In a depression like this one, the world banking panic caused by the collapse of the derivatives bubble in September 2008 has reduced both effective demand and the scale of overall economic activity, as banks and corporations hoard cash, and consumers attempt to pay off debt.

    Because of the insane derivatives bubble stoked by Wall Street zombie bankers and hedge fund hyenas using their derivatives, the private sector has atrophied and degraded. This means that a very large part of the surviving economic activity is represented by the public sector, in other words government at all levels. Under these circumstances, cuts in government spending radically reduce the remaining economic activity, so that production falls, unemployment rises, and the government must step in to provide unemployment benefits. Government workers paying taxes and consuming goods are transformed into jobless. The result of all this is that government deficits rise, rather than being reduced. That’s right: under the depression conditions, budget cuts in public worker layoffs lead to bigger and bigger deficits, not progress towards balanced budgets.

  127. Mrs. Smith 8:06

    Tesla Motors is the car company that we thought here in NM was going to build a plant on the West side of Albuquerque, heavily promoted as a great accomplishment for employment for the area. Then all of a sudden, a special tax deal was made for them with CA, and they decided to build that plant in CA. Obviously there was more going on there than we understood.

  128. Hmmmmmmm..
    Some interesting insight into why Bo isn’t squealing on Libya. Food for thought.

    Aaron Klein, Jerusalem bureau chief for World Net Daily, reports:

    As pressure mounts on the White House to intervene to stop Muammar Gaddafi’s bloody crackdown in Libya, many commentators have been wondering why Obama has been cautious in his criticism of Gaddafi while the U.S. president so fervently supported the removal from office of U.S. ally Hosni Mubarak of Egypt.

    Gaddafi has been tied to Reverend Jeremiah Wright, Obama’s spiritual adviser for more than twenty-three years.
    The Libyan dictator also has financed and strongly supported the Nation of Islam and its leader, Louis Farrakhan. Obama has ties to Farrakhan and his controversial group.

    – Obama has multiple close ties to activists who have had relationships with Gaddafi.
    – Jeremiah Wright, former pastor of Obama’s longtime Chicago church, went with Farrakhan to visit Gaddafi in 1984.
    – During the 2008 presidential campaign, Wright himself noted the trip could cause problems for Obama.
    – “When [Obama’s] enemies find out that in 1984 I went to Tripoli to visit [Gaddafi] with Farrakhan, a lot of his Jewish support will dry up quicker than a snowball in hell,” Wright said.
    – Farrakhan, a close friend and associate of Wright, has been financed by Gaddafi, including with a $5 million interest-free loan in 1985.
    – Later that year, Gaddafi spoke by satellite to Farrakhan’s Saviour’s Day Convention in Chicago, and reportedly told Farrakhan supporters he was prepared to provide weapons to a black army in the U.S. to destroy “white America.”
    – During the period of Obama’s attendance at Wright’s Trinity United Church, which practices controversial Black Liberation Theology ideology, the Chicago church was openly allied with Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam.
    – Wright gave Farrakhan his 2007 Empowerment Award. Farrakhan delivered multiple guest lectures at the church.
    – Wright has been involved in Farrakhan initiatives and labeled him “one of the most important voices in the 20th and 21st century” during a national address to the media in April at which Nation of Islam officials were invited guests.
    – Another Obama connection to supporters of Farrakhan comes from David Axelrod, Obama’s chief political strategist.
    – Although he is Jewish, Axelrod sits on the finance committee of St. Sabina, the Chicago Catholic parish that was led by controversial pastor Michael Pfleger, an outspoken Farrakhan supporter who hosted the Nation of Islam chief at his parish several times.

  129. Under these circumstances, cuts in government spending radically reduce the remaining economic activity, so that production falls, unemployment rises, and the government must step in to provide unemployment benefits. Government workers paying taxes and consuming goods are transformed into jobless. The result of all this is that government deficits rise, rather than being reduced.

    Mrs. Smith, I am so glad to see you post that.
    Austerity and budgets cuts is exactly like in the old days when a doctor would bleeding a wounded patient. End result – dead patient.
    Money is the blood of the economy and depression is caused by money not circulating and budget cuts just makes LESS money circulate. The money is still there – it’s just being hoarded by the too-big-to-fail-bankers who sucked it all up with their bailouts and decided to invest it in nice swiss bank accounts, Chinese sweatshops, and gold. The only way to get that money back in the economy is for the IRS to pry it out of their greedy grip.

  130. basil9
    February 24th, 2011 at 9:07 am
    ——————-

    May be that is why he had Hillary with him yesterday for his Libya statement.. kind of saying to his Mussalman friends Wright, Farrakhan, and Gaddafi, ‘she made me do it’.

  131. “Queen Elizabeth of Britain has been in power longer than me and nothing has happened to her”

    lol, mental case, repeatedly comparing himself to the queen and now mouthing on about wet backsides and the like and then just hangs up.

  132. Obama recruits an army of community organizers to carry his ‘movement forward for years to come’ – LA Times

    The community organizer who became president has launched a massive pre-reelection year campaign to assemble and train an army of new community organizers to carry Obama’s “movement forward for years to come.”

    Strengthening “our democracy” presumably has something to do with reelecting the revered leader in 2012.

    However, the Organizing for America recruiting message says nothing about politics or election campaigns and strangely talks in military terms of “a grassroots program that aims to put boots on the ground and help foster a new generation of leaders — not just to help win elections but to strengthen our democracy in communities across the country.”

    The same Obama campaign group was reported involved in fomenting and facilitating the ongoing Wisconsin protests against Gov. Scott Walker’s budget plans.

    The message about what it calls the “Summer Organizing Fellowship” adds: “Effective organizing doesn’t happen in a vacuum. It takes commitment, time, and hard work to build a movement around a cause.” It does not specify what the “cause” is, other than promoting Obama and his agenda.

    News of the community organizer drive went out in an e-mail to millions of supporters and past donors Tuesday night by the ongoing arm of the Obama campaign, Organizing for America.

    It appealed for workers of all ages to volunteer to undergo professional organizational training this summer for stationing in communities all over the nation to drive President Obama’s social and political agenda.

    The cadres “will be assigned to a specific community,” the message informs, “where they’ll work to organize supporters street by street, neighborhood by neighborhood.”

    Their job will involve recruiting additional Obama workers, running Obama-related events, knocking on doors to talk of Obama “and lay new groundwork to carry this movement forward for years to come.”

    “In the end,” the Obama campaign appeal says of the community organizer corps, “their work will take our grassroots power to an impressive new level.”

    The appeal cites as one role model Nikki Giancola who underwent the training, then quit her middle school teacher’s job to become a regional Obama field director and the satisfaction she felt “in helping millions of people.”

    Another community organizer, Paras Patel, tells of one unforgettable moment actually meeting the leader for whom they all labor, President Obama. “He shook my hand,” Patel recounts, “and told me that he was proud of me.”

    No mention of an Obama organizer flag, uniform — or salute.
    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/washington/2011/02/obama-campaign-community-organizer-/comments/page/9/#comments

  133. Meh, Koch schmocke.

    I don’t understand all the hyperventilating over this guy. He’s a billionaire who gives money to causes he supports. The left has plenty of rich people who fund think tanks, issue lobbying organizations, etc. They’re all over the place.

    It’s pure hypocrisy for the left to act like “Rich dude giving money to leftist causes = concerned citizen” but “Rich dude giving money to right causes = THE DEVIL!!!” Gimme a break. If you don’t like the causes he supports, then fine. But the fact that he gives tons of money to them is not in itself an evil thing, or any different than what happens on the left.

    If you want big money out of the political campaign process altogether, then great. I personally would like to see all campaigns publicly financed. But it’s PURE HYPOCRISY for one side to scream and yell about big donors on the other side as scary and evuhl and alarming, when they have their own doing the same damn thing for causes THEY support.

  134. Thank you, H4T! NYT had an article that tried to say Walker was Koch’s sockpuppet and then the fake phone call happened which showed Walker was not on all that familiar terms with Koch. It makes me laugh that these guys take the blogger boys and NYT seriously when they want it. I think people on both sides should band together and go after both parties and their sugar daddies.

  135. RE: the phone call between Walker and the Koch imposter, I listened to it. It was a big nothingburger. It was pretty obvious that Walker was not friends with the guy, or had any history of talking with him at all. If he’s so close to Koch, you’d think he’d recognize the guy’s voice.

    It was all politician-speak. The sort of “make your talking points, be nice, and politely ignore/gloss over anything the guy is saying that you have no clue about” conversation that one would expect from a pol on the phone with a purported big donor that he didn’t know from Adam.

    Far from proving that Walker is in some sort of close relationship to Koch, that phone call makes it obvious that he wouldn’t know him from the man in the moon.

  136. GO ARIZONA!!!

    Arizona’s state senate just passed a measure disallowing foreclosure unless the bank followed the DAMN LAW and has correct assignment of title with hard signatures all the way down the line.

    The new bill is simple, clear, and unequivocal. It removes any wiggle room in favor of the banks that some bankruptcy judges had been exercising in blatant disregard of or “stretching” of existing property laws. If you have the title duly recorded, you can foreclose. If you don’t, then what you have, Mr. Bankster, is a fucking unsecured loan not attached to any property. That loan is dischargeable for the homeowner just like any other unsecured loan in bankruptcy. Produce the title or get your ten cents on the dollar and STFU. You ain’t touching the house.

    Good for Arizona!! The senate was the tough part – the house is expected to pass it as well, and Brewer will sign it. Score one for the people of Arizona and the rule of law.

    http://market-ticker.org/akcs-www?post=180747

  137. Governer Walker of Wisconsin continues to act like a butthead. He is playing on the fact that one half of the Wisc. legislature have agreed to limit amendments and debate on union rights debate bills. This is the state assembly, not the state senate where the dem senators are still out of town. Knowing that alot of people will not know the difference, Walker is once again sending the state troopers out to the senators homes in a pretense of dragging them back to the statehouse. However, “The lawmakers can’t be arrested, but Republican Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said he hoped the move would pressure them to return.”

    Besides the lawmakers are still outside of Wisconsin. So this is more show.
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110224/ap_on_re_us/us_wisconsin_budget_unions

  138. (CNN) — A 20-year-old Saudi national was arrested in Lubbock, Texas, on Thursday for allegedly researching and acquiring materials to make explosives, law enforcement sources told CNN.

    Khalid Ali-M Aldawsari planned to target the home of former President George W. Bush and other sites, the sources said.

    He faces a federal charge of attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction, the justice department said.

    (MORE)

    http://www.cnn.com/2011/CRIME/02/24/terror.arrest/index.html?section=cnn_latest

  139. LUBBOCK, TEXAS — According to the United State Department of Justice, Khalid Ali-M Aldawsari, 20, a citizen of Saudi Arabia and resident of Lubbock, Texas, was arrested late yesterday by FBI agents.

    Aldawsari is charged with the attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction in connection with his alleged purchase of chemicals and equipment necessary to make an improvised explosive device and his research into possible targets inside the United States. According to court documents, Aldawsari has been using the internet, researching how to build an IED using several chemicals as ingredients. The documents also said he has acquired or taken a substantial step toward getting most of those ingredients along with the equipment necessary to make the explosive device.

    The report states that Aldawsari was lawfully admitted into the United States in 2008 on a student visa and is enrolled at South Plains College. Aldawsari is expected to make his initial appearance in federal court in Lubbock Friday morning. In addition, he has allegedly described his desire for violent jihad and martyrdom in blog postings and a personal journal. He faces life in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 fine if convicted.
    http://www.connectamarillo.com/news/story.aspx?id=585286

  140. this is way, way OT, however for Jan and other animal lovers…not the bird you have Jan…but such an act of gentleness is a world gone mad…

    www. wimp.com/babyhummingbird

    so sweet…

  141. I know BigCatLover… so loveable with all this awful killing and senseless hate going on…

    btw…i am also a cat lover…

  142. votermom

    …The money is still there – it’s just being hoarded by the too-big-to-fail-bankers who sucked it all up with their bailouts and decided to invest it in nice swiss bank accounts, Chinese sweatshops, and gold. The only way to get that money back in the economy is for the IRS to pry it out of their greedy grip.

    ——-
    Oh no, (spinning around with pink hankie to my heated brow)…take money from people that create all the jobs…just the thought of paying taxes without loopholes and tax breaks makes my voice quiver.

    Yes, the damn Retugs that won their George W PetFucking Goat tax break extensions don’t need to worry about losing their jobs nor feeding their families. Break the workers, steal what little they have and keep the greedy Republican pockets full.

    I HATE Republicans like dead man Walker more every freakin’ day.

  143. Gaddafi is phoning his speeches in now, must be near the end.

    ——–
    I hope he smells the rivers of honey and lusts for the 72 virgins…tick, tick, tick.

  144. Arizona’s state senate just passed a measure disallowing foreclosure unless the bank followed the DAMN LAW and has correct assignment of title with hard signatures all the way down the line.

    ——–
    How sad it is that we actually see a hero state emerge when they pass a measure for banks to follow the law before stealing back a home?

    We live in the land of corruption and greed. The almighty buck rules! We have so many to thank for that.

  145. First time quoting Daffy:

    Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi on Thursday blamed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden for manipulating Libyans who have risen up against the veteran leader and taken control of large parts of the oil-producing country.

    “Bin Laden … this is the enemy who is manipulating people,” Gaddafi said, speaking by telephone to Libyan television. “Do not be swayed by bin Laden.

  146. BCL,
    Oh yes..I take one everyday…I’m fine today…walking down memory lane is bad for your health…LOL! Especially if the lane is 42 years long….LOL! I’m OK today!

  147. confloyd
    Good that you are better. Since you have been dieting and losing weight, I was worried that it might be a strain on your heart, but an aspirin a day is a good precaution.

  148. The issue in Wisconsin is larger than whether union represented employees must pay a larger share of their health care or retirement costs, like other employees in the State do. It is larger than the attempts by an Obama to promote anarchy because he believes he can use it to his advantage in the campaign. (Note: Obama has not met with 6 members of his cabinet for 2 years, yet Trumpka visits the White House 2-3 times per week.) And it is larger than whether the governor who was elected by the voters is a butt head or not. It is larger than whether MSNBC can distort what is really happening, or FOX can promote a Republican Agenda. It is all about whether the voters of the State will tolerate a group of legislators who abdicate their responsibility and flee the State to avoid their duty. Even when Pelosi was subverting democracy on the Health Care Deform bill, the Republicans remained at their station–they did not flee Washington. Make no mistake, what we are seeing here is a subversion of our constitutional system by a militant minority, and a refusal to come to terms with budget constraints. Here is the ultimate issue which is playing out throughout the country, which De Tocquiville among others warned about:

    “A democracy can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship.”

    On a different note, MSNBC was enthralled by Obama’s speech about Libya that they must be reasonable, but they failed to report on the news conference convened this morning not by Obama, but by the military begging Obama saying that they cannot protect the oil fields as things now stand, mentioning the death threat which the pirates have issued against all Americans (because the world knows Obama is a paper tiger) and begging him to act more forcefully. When the world’s policeman refuses to act, because its leader is an anarchist at heart, and hates America, then it is axiomatic that the world has no policeman, and anarchy follows in its wake. MSNBC should have its FCC license revoked.

  149. Our military held a news conference??

    ” the news conference convened this morning not by Obama, but by the military begging Obama saying that they cannot protect the oil fields as things now stand, mentioning the death threat which the pirates have issued against all Americans (because the world knows Obama is a paper tiger) and begging him to act more forcefully. “

  150. “The rugged individualism of the nineteenth century,…..”
    *********
    Among other things, “Free labor” and “Constitutional Freedom of Contract”. A return to the Lochner era is a Rethugs wet dream.
    ———-
    As a theoretical matter, yes. As a practical matter no. Why? The zeitgeist of the nineteenth century was open immigration and manifest destiny. The endless frontier, and the promise of wealth, redemption and equality because of free land if you could prove up–even if it was mostly an illusion, a mud hut and land that would not support agriculture. Free labor and freedom of contract were the flotsam and jetsome of that dynamic. The standard contract for the buffalo range was free transportation from the east, but no return fair unless you completed the six month term. The frontier closed in 1890 which was five years after my grandparents were born. The cities of the east and the stockyards of Chicago were ghettoized. The economics changed, then the politics and then the law. Progressivism began in the East, but women acquired the vote first in the West because of the power of the gun. Holmes once described the politicians–judges too, as the sweepers who followed in the wake of the circus elephants which was his metaphor for great economic changes, which dispels the common notion that politicians or judges are leaders. But lest we forget, Holmes was never the saint many liberals take him for today. He was an unabashed social darwinist, whose views were shaped on the battlefields of the American Civil War as a captain in the Massachusetts volunteers. I have had this argument with Republican operatives on many occasions. They believe you can apply the theories of the Austrian School (Von Mices et al) to the entire society, whereas I believe that where people lack self sufficiency, or where drugs delusion and the imperial culture of the slums applies, they don’t work.

  151. Oh no, (spinning around with pink hankie to my heated brow)…take money from people that create all the jobs…just the thought of paying taxes without loopholes and tax breaks makes my voice quiver.

    LOL. Want to borrow my fainting couch? 🙂

  152. Our military held a news conference??
    ————————————-
    Yes indeed. It was reported only on FOX. The bottom line is they do not want to be blamed. And they know what Obama is capable of. Think back to the initial confrontation with the Somolian pirates. Then as now, he froze up and you could not get an answer or an order out of him. Hence the navy sent a Seal on television in a disguised voice and he made it very clear that the Navy was prepared to act, but the White House had failed to give the order. Nunc pro tunc–then as now. Only now, they no longer hide behind a silhouette and an alias.

  153. Tut tut…liar liar….

    Lobbyists: White House sends meetings off-site to hide them

    Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0211/50081.html#ixzz1Eu4T5ikX

    Caught between their boss’ anti-lobbyist rhetoric and the reality of governing, President Barack Obama’s aides often steer meetings with lobbyists to a complex just off the White House grounds — and several of the lobbyists involved say they believe the choice of venue is no accident.

    It allows the Obama administration to keep these lobbyist meetings shielded from public view — and out of Secret Service logs kept on visitors to the White House and later released to the public.

    “They’re doing it on the side. It’s better than nothing,” said immigration reform lobbyist Tamar Jacoby, who has attended meetings at the nearby Jackson Place complex and believes the undisclosed gatherings are better than none.

    The White House scoffs at the notion of an ulterior motive for scheduling meetings in what are, after all, meeting rooms. But at least four lobbyists who’ve been to the conference rooms just off Lafayette Square tell POLITICO they had the distinct impression they were being shunted off to Jackson Place — and off the books — so their visits wouldn’t later be made public.

    Obama’s administration has touted its release of White House visitors logs as a breakthrough in transparency, as the first White House team to reveal the comings and goings around the West Wing and the Old Executive Office Building.

    The Jackson Place townhouses are a different story.

    There are no records of meetings at the row houses just off Lafayette Square that house the White House Conference Center and the Council on Environmental Quality, home to two of the busiest meeting spaces. The White House can’t say who attended meetings there, or how often. The Secret Service doesn’t log in visitors or require a background check the way it does at the main gates of the White House.

  154. Libya and the president with dead eyes
    By Bronwyn’s Harbor on February 24, 2011 at 10:30 AM in Current Affairs

    I am overcome by the outrage expressed by our president Wednesday. Not. There is in his eyes, in his visage, no expression to match the few words he is mouthing. See the video below. His statement was embarrassingly inadequate to address the crisis in Libya. It’s not good when a solid liberal Democrat like Eliot Spitzer looks into the camera on CNN’s Parker Spitzer, his head down, and quietly says:

    SPITZER: With all due respect it does seem just a little bit late in the day to ask Moammar Gadhafi to behave responsibly.

    Then there were the staggering words of an “unidentified female” who is risking her life to call in to CNN regularly to report on conditions from her home in Tripoli:

    The Libyan public are angry from the statement was given by President Obama today. Everybody was disappointed. [I’ve included more of her statement below the fold … she goes on at length about her profound disappointment in Obama.]

    Then, from Anderson Cooper 360, there’s additional criticism of Obama’s remarks Wednesday — I’ve italicized the beginning of the critique, although Cooper’s question carries in it the obvious markings of his own disappointment:

    ANDERSON COOPER: Fouad, we have heard the strongest word yet from President Obama. Was he strong enough today?

    FOUAD AJAMI, PROFESSOR OF MIDDLE EASTERN STUDIES, JOHNS HOPKINS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED INTERNATIONAL STUDIES: Well, I don’t think they’re very strong.

    I think, if I were Moammar Gadhafi in a bombed-out bunker in Tripoli, I would think this is not a bad day for me, because in the end, what the president hasn’t yet said and hasn’t yet expressed fully and forcefully, as Angela Merkel has, is to declare the Libyan regime illegitimate and to make it clear to the functionaries of the regime that we are watching them and we will hold them responsible for the crimes they have committed.

    By the way, Senator John Kerry from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee has made a statement along the same line. We must consider the Libyan regime at war with its own people and we must tell the functionaries of the regime the crimes that they committed will not go unpunished. That is something that the president has not yet done and it’s something that the events may call for.

    YES! John Kerry put Obama to shame. So did Hillary.

    Oh yes, Americans like to make fun of the French and Germans. But yesterday, they spoke out in no uncertain terms against Qaddafi. From Bloomberg:

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy led calls for European Union sanctions against Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi as political unrest continued in the North African nation.

    Merkel said that Qaddafi’s televised speech yesterday in which he threatened his own people with civil war was “alarming.” Sarkozy said today that France may suspend economic and commercial relations with Libya, according to an e- mailed statement in Paris.

    The European Union in Brussels is suspending negotiations with the Libyan government on an EU-Libya Framework Agreement and said the 27-nation bloc “is ready to take further measures.” EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said “those responsible for the brutal aggression and violence against civilians will be held to account.”

    […]

    Sarkozy said he is asking “European partners to rapidly adopt concrete sanctions so that those who are implicated in the violence know that they must bear the consequences of their actions,” according to the statement. “These measures should include the possibility of making people face justice, blocking access to the European Union, and the surveillance of financial movements.”

    ‘All Avenues’

    French government spokesman Francois Baroin called Libya’s unrest “chaos” and told reporters that France is “determined” to see Europe act against Libya’s leader through sanctions and the suspension of all trade.

    “If the use of violence doesn’t stop, Germany will call for us to use all avenues of pressure and influence on Libya, including the question of talking about sanctions,” Merkel said.

    EU President Herman Van Rompuy called “for an immediate end to the use of force” in Libya. “I have seen horrible crimes that are unacceptable and must not remain without Consequences,” he said.

    […]

    HERE is more from the “unidentified female” who is risking her life to call in to CNN regularly to report on conditions from her home in Tripoli:

    COOPER: Why do you continue to report?

    UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Because I would rather die reporting than see this — see him staying and give up about this war happening. It’s him against the world. It’s not him against this country.

    But I will tell you something. The Libyan public are angry from the statement was given by President Obama today. Everybody was disappointed.

    COOPER: You feel he didn’t go for enough?

    UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No. I was expecting him commenting about the aids army troops are giving this — the regime about the black people and the European, Eastern European people recruited to contribute in this massacre. It’s nonsense.

    I thought that he’s going to give even threats or warning for this to stop. I expected more, to be honest. I expected to read between the lines from his speech. I did not see that. I was very disappointed, not me alone. Everybody was disappointed. We want America to support us.

    I feel ashamed to be a U.S. citizen.

    I have a president who is less brave than a lone woman hiding in fear for her life in Tripoli.

    I am a part of a nation that will not stand up to murderous tyrants.

    As Larry Johnson said Tuesday night on the John Batchelor Show, it is shocking that Barack Obama had plenty to say about Egypt, which at least has been an ally for decades, but is near silent on a far bloodier, crueler situation in Libya.

  155. How in the world is the military holding its own press conference?? OMG! This is huge, don’t you all think???

  156. Obama is racking up the titles (and salaries) with great success:

    1. Nobel Prize for doing nothing.

    2. Coward in chief.

    3. Liar in chief.

    4. Anarchist in chief.

    5. Apologist in chief.

    6. Our seventh greatest president according to a recent Gallup poll, conducted at a mental institution.

  157. “As a theoretical matter, yes. As a practical matter no. Why? The zeitgeist of the nineteenth century was open immigration and manifest destiny.”
    *******
    Way beyond my education/expertise but deregulation that began with Carter and accelerated with Reagan has returned to this country many of the social and economic abuses of laissez-faire pre-1933. Big AG and the food processors have benefited form lax immigration enforcement but the massive immigration that affected American workers in the late 19th and early 20th is reproduced by “Globalization”. The effects of massive influx of Southern and Eastern European workers is now replicated by competition with workers in the “third world”. Obama’s mantra of competitive means the further erosion of the middle class. The rethug’s systematic attack on the idea of unions is a return to the 19th century Republican concept that there should be no interference between worker/employer contract for labor. I don’t know the answer but the massive transfer of income and wealth to the upper 1% that has occurred since Reagan will ultimately destroy the political/social fabric of this Country.

    As confloyd has pointed out, “Bubba”, who supports the Republican and now Democratic party’s social/economic agenda will end up with marginal/no employment, an under water mortgage/homeless, no health care, no safety-net and wonder WTF happened.

  158. S,

    How beautiful! It is so hard to rehabilitate injured birds and reintroduce them to the outdoors. Once they get used to hand feeding they come to depend on it.

    That clip was so sweet. Reminds me of when one of my parrots, a quaker named Wyntre, injured himself while flying in my home and I had to handfeed him for over two weeks. Since then he has become a total love bird, cuddling under my chin while I’m at the comouter or perching under my bathrobe in the morning. There is nothing like becoming best friends with a bird. They are such tiny miracles.

    As I’m typing this, my big bird, a bluefront Amazon named Venus, is hunkered down on my knee beneath the keyboard.

  159. MILBANK: NEW PRESS SEC’Y REFLECTS OBAMA’S PASSIVITY

    washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/02/23/AR2011022304672.html?hpid=opinionsbox1

    Jay Carney: Mouthpiece for an inscrutable White House
    =====================

    By Dana Milbank
    Wednesday, February 23, 2011; 3:46 PM

    There have been worse times to start a new job in Washington. When Abraham Lincoln arrived in the capital 150 years ago this week, for example, the South had already seceded.

    Jay Carney, the new White House press secretary, didn’t have anything quite so dire on his hands when he took over the briefing room podium last week. But President Obama has put his new spokesman in an unenviable position: He is the mouthpiece of an administration that has painfully little to say.

    The Middle East and North Africa are erupting in violence. A shutdown of the federal government looms, just 10 days away. State governments have been disrupted by noisy protests. And, yet, the White House has been inexplicably passive.

    CNN’s Ed Henry asked why it has taken Obama so long to speak out about the violence in Libya.

    “The president puts out statements on paper sometimes,” Carney explained.

    AP Radio’s Mark Smith pointed out that “since your briefing began, West Texas crude topped $100 a barrel. Is this just a matter of watching, or is there anything the U.S. government can do?”

    Carney opted for the former. “I don’t want to speculate about where prices will go, or any other potential things in the future,” he replied. “We’re just monitoring it.”

    ABC’s Ann Compton asked about whether the state budget standoffs would become a national phenomenon.

    “I’m not going to speculate on his behalf or mine about where this debate is going,” the press secretary said.

    Carney even portrayed as a passive gesture the administration’s announcement that it would no longer defend in court the Defense of Marriage Act. “The administration had no choice,” he said. “It was under a court-imposed deadline to make this decision.”

    The passivity wasn’t the fault of the new spokesman. He merely had the uncomfortable task of articulating a coherent policy in the absence of one. The problem was most glaring on the Libyan uprising, which the president has handled with the detachment of a powerless observer.

    Finally, after days without speaking publicly about Libya, Obama addressed the cameras Wednesday evening. The president’s statement was admirably strong in its denunciation of the Libyan regime’s “outrageous” and “unacceptable” violence against its people. And he repeated the language of an earlier, written statement about the “universal rights” of the Libyan people to peaceful assembly.

    But when it came to articulating American policy in the region, the president was again vague. He said he asked his advisers to “prepare the full range of options that we have to respond to this crisis.” He said he was continuing to determine “how the international community can most effectively support the peaceful transition to democracy in both Tunisia and in Egypt.” He ignored a reporter’s question about what action he would take on Libya.

    That lack of clarity probably means his spokesman can expect more of the questions he got during his Wednesday briefing.

    ABC’s Jake Tapper asked if Carney could “articulate a policy that the Obama administration has for this sweeping wave of protests.”

    Carney offered a few bromides about “the universal rights of the citizens” and such.

    Tapper pointed out that these are principles, not policies. “Is it fair to call this policy, as it’s formulated, ad hoc or ad libbed?” Tapper inquired.

    The press secretary did not think this would be fair — but he had difficulty convincing the press corps.

    “If there is a clear set of principles, why has the president chosen to not enunciate them for several days now?” asked CNN’s Ed Henry.

    “So it’s fair to say we are in the midst of, sort of, changing, reworking our Middle East policy?” asked NBC’s Chuck Todd.

    Carney retreated to more talk about timeless principles. And that’s about the best he can do — until the president devises a policy for him to talk about.

  160. SHV
    February 24th, 2011 at 2:14 pm
    ——————————-
    All I am saying is that while those principles do have merit, and we cannot lose sight of them. But neither can we push them to the limits of their logic. They have to be tempered with a sense of reality and the times. What capital could get away with in the nineteenth century is not what they can get away with today. During the Bush years, I saw the same phenomenon you did with the property rights movement, and we had candidates who ran on that platform–but the important thing is they lost. And you are quite correct that this move toward deregulation began under Carter with Professor Alfred Kahn of Harvard. It coincided with the outsourcing of American labor. During a single year the Teamsters lost 30% of their membership mostly in trucking as high cost union carriers who were accustomed to passing their costs along to the consumer since under the regulated scheme, all carriers charged the same rate, found that they no longer could. How we get the genie back in the bottle becomes the critical question–for which no one at the moment appears to have a credible answer. I suspect LaRouche is right that we must reinvest in manufacturing, and develop a tariff scheme which protects fledgling industries. That was done in the early nineteenth century, and if it had not happened we would be a vassal state of England, and our official language would be English, rather than American.

  161. SHV
    February 24th, 2011 at 2:14 pm
    ——————————–
    I have great respect for your judgment, which is the only reason I ask this question: is there no hope that the American People can come out of this thing in one piece, or is the system too far gone for anyone to solve? And if it is not yet too far gone, what exactly would it take to right this ship of state? Hedges believes there is no basis for optimism and is weighing the prospects for anarchy, while freely admitting that violence is a drug. I find him good at defining the problem but short on solutions. La Rouche for all he has vilified is also excellent at defining the problem, and the solutions he proposes do seem credible, but he lacks the ability to implement. His people call me from time to time, and they talk about this candidate or that candidate they are promoting as a La Rouche candidate, but at this point, it seems to have no impact. The question is must we go through a gotterdamerung to wake people up. The thing I worry about the most, and this is why I worry Obama will get a second term, is too many Americans lack the critical thinking skills to evaluate just how bad Obama’s job performance has been, and what it is doing to the country. On that score, Hedges is right, they rely on the false highs and magic thinking of a celebrity drenched culture which sustains itself through images as opposed to considered analysis. So for the moment at least, pretend you are Houdini. How do honest hardworking and loyal Americans extricate our country from this morass. Interesting my friend the arbitrator just wrote a letter to one of our greatest leaders who served in a prior administration, whose family goes back to Colonial times. This leader is deeply concerned about the future of this country, and we are awaiting his much needed reply.

  162. Best quotes yet.

    “Oh, no…if Qaddafi is dead, who will succeed him as Michelle Obama’s fashion adviser?”

    The costume disigners for the old Muppet Show are still around.

    ……….

    ROFLMAO

  163. moononpluto
    February 24th, 2011 at 3:16 pm
    Hearing reports Gaddafi has been shot dead. Not yet confirmed.
    &&&&&&&&&

    No word of this on Yahoo or CNN…

  164. NewMexicoFan

    February 24th, 2011 at 9:01 am
    Mrs. Smith 8:06

    Tesla Motors is the car company that we thought here in NM was going to build a plant on the West side of Albuquerque, heavily promoted as a great accomplishment for employment for the area. Then all of a sudden, a special tax deal was made for them with CA, and they decided to build that plant in CA. Obviously there was more going on there than we understood.
    ______________________

    Obviously more going on that we know of that will eventually come out in the investigation hearings…IF, the accused arent affluent enough to buy their way out of the charges, or there aren’t any high profile Republicans involved who could sweepthe corruption under the rug.

    ___________________________

    votermom
    February 24th, 2011 at 9:17 am

    Under these circumstances, cuts in government spending radically reduce the remaining economic activity, so that production falls, unemployment rises, and the government must step in to provide unemployment benefits. Government workers paying taxes and consuming goods are transformed into jobless. The result of all this is that government deficits rise, rather than being reduced.
    _______________________

    Mrs. Smith, I am so glad to see you post that.

    Austerity and budgets cuts is exactly like in the old days when a doctor would bleeding a wounded patient. End result – dead patient.

    Money is the blood of the economy and depression is caused by money not circulating and budget cuts just makes LESS money circulate. The money is still there – it’s just being hoarded by the too-big-to-fail-bankers who sucked it all up with their bailouts and decided to invest it in nice swiss bank accounts, Chinese sweatshops, and gold. The only way to get that money back in the economy is for the IRS to pry it out of their greedy grip.
    _____________________

    That fact in of itself should be enough to indict Obama for sedition of the US Government to instability and Bankruptcy and misappropriation of Taxpayer funds for personal gain. (is forbidden in the Constitution)

    The tack of federal top down budget cuts is reverberating like an A-Bomb dropped on the US. The millions of poorly handled home foreclosures (by the federal government in concert with the banks) are triggering a dangerous insufficiency of income to states and municipalities because of non-existent income from Real Estate Taxes. Insuffienciew are slowly eroding state’s and municipal budgets shrinking their treasuries therefore their operating capital in turn causing forced lay-offs of teachers and local and state police enforcement, lay-offs of firemen, canceled trash pickups besides the inability of states covering unemployment checks to the out of work municipal employees.

    The dominoes are falling and falling fast. With Governor Walker at the helm, the demise of the American way will only happen quicker and reason enough to STOP him dead in his tracks. If Walker succeeds, this will set a dangerous precedent throughout the country that will spread like wildfire burning this country to the ground.
    _______________________

    The Hand of Koch over Wisconsin: The American Legislative Exchange

    The current crisis has Koch’s fingerprints all over it. Walker is one of a whole stable of reactionary politicians, including Washington primitives like Senator DeMint, who are controlled by Koch. The assault on state workers nationwide is being coordinated by the American Legislative Exchange (ALEC), which aims at busting state unions. Walker’s Tea Party supporters, such as they arte, were bussed in by Americans for Prosperity, another group controlled by Koch.
    ___________________-

    Anyone who underestimates Koch, like Soros, needs a serious reality check.

    Koch is your average Billionaire who likes playing high stakes BINGO with people’s lives just as George Soros, who has ruined millions of lives manipulating foreign currencies devaluating foreign dollars into worthless paper documented in many countries.

  165. MORE STALLING, THIS TIME ON HEALTH-SCARE BILL

    When life deals Obama lemons, he stalls.

    thehill.com/blogs/healthwatch/health-reform-implementation/145861-states-judge-meant-to-halt-implementation

    States: Judge clearly meant to halt work on the healthcare law
    By Jason Millman – 02/23/11 07:31 PM ET

    New comments from the states come after the Obama administration asked a judge to clarify ruling that struck down reforms.

    The 26 states and a business group that successfully challenged the healthcare reform law in federal court said the judge clearly meant to halt implementation of the healthcare overhaul.

    The comments from the states and the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), filed in a Florida federal court Wednesday evening, came a week after the Obama administration sought clarification on a Jan. 31 ruling that struck down the entire reform law.

    The decision from U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson was the first to rule the entire law unconstitutional. Vinson, a Reagan appointee, said the law’s requirement for individuals to purchase insurance was unconstitutional and not severable from the rest of the 2,700-page law enacted 11 months ago.

    In light of Vinson’s ruling, some states have declared the reform law effectively dead unless an appellate court reverses the decision. Florida has returned federal grants for implementation, while Alaska has turned down another.

    The 26 states and NFIB called the Obama administration’s request for a clarification a thinly-veiled attempt to request a stay.

    “If the Government was not prepared to comply with the Court’s judgment, the proper and respectful course would have been to seek an immediate stay, not an untimely and unorthodox motion to clarify,” the plaintiffs wrote. “Defendants’ Motion is, in fact, a transparent attempt, through the guise of seeking clarification, to obtain a stay pending appeal.”

    The administration has argued in its clarification request that the individual mandate does not go into effect until 2014, which gives the plenty of time for appellate courts to decide on its constitutionality. Meanwhile, a number of provisions in the healthcare overhaul have already taken effect or require immediate action.

    The administration has three days to respond to the states and NFIB, and Vinson said he will then respond “promptly” to the clarification request.

    Meanwhile, the numerous challenges to the reform law have played out along party lines. A third federal judge — all Clinton appointees — on Tuesday upheld the individual mandate. A federal judge who struck down the individual mandate in December was appointed by George W. Bush.

    The Florida case will likely go to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. Two other challenges have already reached the appellate level, and the Supreme Court is expected to weigh in sometime in 2012.

  166. basil9
    February 24th, 2011 at 2:23 pm
    S,
    How beautiful! It is so hard to rehabilitate injured birds and reintroduce them to the outdoors. Once they get used to hand feeding they come to depend on it.

    That clip was so sweet.
    *********************************

    I hear you basil9…thank goodness for our animal buddies…we love them and they love us…no matter what…

  167. OBAMA’S MOTIVE IN WISCONSIN

    Rove outlines why so much energy is going into upstaging the Gov. of Wisconsin. Includes this key paragraph:

    “Unlike those states, Wisconsin is a 2012 battleground. Gerald McEntee, president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, told a reporter from this newspaper last week that a union defeat in Wisconsin “can put [Mr. Obama] in some danger” of losing the next election. Labor spent $400 million to elect Mr. Obama in 2008: Mr. McEntee was sending a not-so-subtle message that unions would be unable to spend so generously on his behalf in 2012 if they continue hemorrhaging members and dues money.”

    online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703529004576160370862157158.html

    Obama’s Badger State Blues
    ======================

    A union defeat in Wisconsin could hurt the president’s re-election bid.

    By KARL ROVE
    During the past eight days, thousands of Wisconsin teachers walked out of classrooms, shutting down schools. Tens of thousands of public employees staged an apparent wildcat strike, flooding Wisconsin’s state capital in a round-the-clock protest. And Democratic legislators engaged in a most undemocratic action, fleeing Wisconsin to deny the state Senate the supermajority required for a quorum.

    They did this to oppose Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s efforts to require public employees to increase contributions to their retirement and health-insurance plans, and to rein in their collective-bargaining power to negotiate for higher benefits.

    President Barack Obama has joined labor’s attacks, criticizing Mr. Walker’s proposals as “an assault on unions.” According to news reports, Mr. Obama’s personal political machine, Organizing for America, was thrust into the battle, providing buses to transport striking government workers to the protests, mobilizing phone banks, and rallying protesters from nearby states.

    Why is the president trying to bully the Wisconsin governor? After all, Arizona, Utah, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and West Virginia are among the states to explicitly prohibit collective bargaining for public employees, which is far beyond what Mr. Walker is seeking. The answer is found in four digits: 2012.

    Unlike those states, Wisconsin is a 2012 battleground. Gerald McEntee, president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, told a reporter from this newspaper last week that a union defeat in Wisconsin “can put [Mr. Obama] in some danger” of losing the next election. Labor spent $400 million to elect Mr. Obama in 2008: Mr. McEntee was sending a not-so-subtle message that unions would be unable to spend so generously on his behalf in 2012 if they continue hemorrhaging members and dues money.

    And hemorrhage they have. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), last year alone 612,000 U.S. workers dropped their union memberships, each representing as much as $500 in lost dues. While labor is still powerful, its decline has been precipitous among private- sector workers. According to the BLS, just 6.9% of private-sector workers (7.1 million) are unionized, while 36.2% of public- sector workers (7.6 million) are. And the number of public-sector union members is rising.

    The growth of public- employee unions has paid off handsomely for some. The BLS reports the average annual wage for a state-government employee is now $48,742, but $45,155 for a worker in the private sector. What’s more, the Bureau says the cost of benefits for state and local government workers has risen 50% more than those for private-sector employees since 2001.

    This matters to taxpayers. Public-employee unions push to increase their numbers and get more benefits by expanding government’s cost and size. This often puts them at odds with the citizens who pay the bills.

    Union demands have helped produce an estimated $3.5 trillion in unfunded liabilities for state and local government pension and health-care plans. They’ve also led to personnel practices that tie the hands of local elected officials, often resulting in perverse outcomes. For example, union insistence on “Last In, First Out” often means the best and brightest teachers are let go when districts downsize or schools close.

    Wisconsin’s governor knows this firsthand. In 2003, during his first term as Milwaukee county executive, Mr. Walker faced a huge budget deficit. He could have either raised already astronomical property taxes or found savings in personnel costs, the biggest part of his budget. Collective bargaining tied his hands, and once unions refused concessions his only option was to fire people. He reduced the county government’s work force by 20%.

    Seared by this episode, Mr. Walker now wants statewide local governments and school districts to have the management tools to avoid layoffs. Hence his proposals to limit collective-bargaining rights for benefits and to require public approval of pay raises greater than inflation.

    Fortunately for Mr. Walker and others contemplating his course, there’s a lesson in the experience of Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels. Upon entering office in 2005, Mr. Daniels signed an executive order ending collective bargaining for state workers. This and other controversial actions caused his approval ratings to fall into the 30% range.

    But by re-election time, Mr. Daniels’s decisions had paid off. The state’s finances were in good shape and Indiana’s economy was doing better than its neighbors’. While Mr. Obama was carrying the state in 2008, Mr. Daniels won a second term with 58%, proving that the right policies are often the right politics.

    Events in Wisconsin have offered a vivid contrast between two chief executives. One (Mr. Walker) is taking meaningful steps to achieve fiscal balance. The other (Mr. Obama) is encouraging public employees to violate their contracts while his policies cause record deficits and reckless spending.

    Let’s hope the differences between the two won’t be lost on Badger State residents or the rest of America.

  168. HOW’S THAT 2012 LOOKIN’ FOR YA??

    Assuming Carville’s Law, “It’s the Economy, Stupid”, is still valid, Obama can start planning reeeeeal long vacations in two years…

    online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704520504576162780011205242.html?mod=WSJ_hp_MIDDLENexttoWhatsNewsSecond

    Rising Oil Prices Raise the Specter of a Double Dip
    ==================

    By JUSTIN LAHART

    A sustained and significant rise in oil prices could derail the U.S. economic recovery by stirring inflation and putting the brakes on spending.

    Oil futures touched $100 a barrel at the New York Mercantile Exchange Wednesday—the highest since before the financial crisis hit in late 2008—before pulling back. Pricier oil drives up the costs of everything from gas at the pump to the raw materials used to make nylon and food packaging. That could mean higher inflation and prompt consumers, who lately have shown more willingness to spend, to cut back their purchases.

    Oil prices have risen 7.35% since the beginning of the year, while gasoline futures have risen 10.67%.

    The question now is whether turmoil in the Middle East and Northern Africa could lead to a sustained cutback in production or delivery disruptions that could drive those prices much higher and push the U.S. as well as other countries back into recession. Supply-driven oil shocks, like the ones that came with the 1973 oil embargo and the 1979 Iranian revolution, were factors in past recessions.

    Most economists reckon that the price of oil would have to rise to at least $120 a barrel, and stay there, to threaten the recovery.

    “It’s definitely unhelpful,” says Comerica economist Dana Johnson of the rise in energy prices. “But we would really need a far more massive increase in crude prices for me to really start worrying.”

    In part because it is driven by something other than increased demand, the rising price of oil is unlikely to prompt the Federal Reserve to move more quickly toward raising short-term interest rates, now near zero, or otherwise moving to tighten credit. That could change if higher energy and goods costs begin to seriously feed into prices of other goods and services. But with unemployment high, a large share of U.S. manufacturing capacity still idle, and little sign that public or market expectations for inflation are moving up, Fed policymakers see the chances of inflation rising by more than their informal target of about 2% this year as remote.

    Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, speaking at a meeting in Washington hosted by Bloomberg News, said policymakers are in a good position to handle the surge in oil and other commodities prices. “Central banks have had a lot of experience in managing those things,” he said. “It’s not rocket science.”

    The biggest risk to the economy from climbing energy prices stems from U.S. consumers, says James Hamilton, an economist at the University of California-San Diego. Collectively, they use about 140 billion gallons of gasoline a year, he notes, so the roughly 30-cents-a-gallon increase in pump prices over the past three months adds up. “That’s a significant drain on consumer budgets that could put a drag on the recovery,” he says.

    Transportation firms are among the most exposed to energy prices. Airlines have been trying to raise ticket prices as consumers and businesses push back. Trucking companies, on the other hand, often find it easier to pass on rising fuel costs to their customers through surcharges.

    “We just kind of pass our costs” through, says Adam Allen, owner of Pocahontas, Iowa, trucking firm Allen Transport. Customers “understand what’s going on.”

    Chemicals companies also appear to be passing on some higher petroleum costs to customers. In January, wholesale chemicals prices were up 8.4% from a year earlier, according to Labor Department figures.

    Higher energy prices often hurt consumer-oriented companies, particularly sellers of discretionary items, such as cars, movie tickets and big-screen televisions. As consumers spend more at the pump, they often compensate by cutting back on purchases they don’t view as strictly necessary.

    Meanwhile, food prices are rising, which could also cut into discretionary spending. “One of the main risks to the economy right now is an energy price shock, especially if it’s paired with a food-price shock as well,” says Barclays Capital economist Dean Maki.

  169. “is there no hope that the American People can come out of this thing in one piece, or is the system too far gone for anyone to solve?’
    **********
    I agree that many people are good as describing the problems but solutions are non-existent. (Republican-theocrats would disagree.) The political system is now geared to help the few grab as much as they can, while they can, and have the remaining 99% fight over the scraps.

    This country and the world are headed over the cliff and “business as usual” won’t work. The major driving forces toward the cliff are rapidly expanding World Population and the end of cheap energy. The extremes of opinion to the “facts” are (!)”Doomers”believe that the result will be world population collapse and (2)religious fundamentalists “nothing to worry about, god wouldn’t let “it” get that bad. Well it is going to get bad and, at least in this country, I don’t see anything in politics/government that is going to work for the majority of Americans. At least in my remaining lifetime, I thinks as social conditions continue to deteriorate, the politic will be driven more toward the theocratic right. The chances that the politics will trend toward a “New Deal” is not likely.

  170. NICE SYNOPSIS OF THE “DO AS I SAY, NOT AS I DO” RESIDENT AT 1600

    Ooooof. Blunt assessment of the first family, and of Obama’s priorities. Includes this barb:

    “Even Newsweek editor at large Evan Thomas, who once gushed that Obama stood ‘above the world’ as some ‘sort of God,’ called the president’s new budget a ‘profile in cowardice.’ ”

    realclearpolitics.com/articles/2011/02/24/after_obama_the_deluge_109012.html

    February 24, 2011
    After Obama, the Deluge
    By Victor Davis Hanson

    President Obama established a bipartisan debt-reduction commission — and then ignored its findings, which called for unpopular reductions in entitlements and across-the-board spending cuts. His first two budgets led to the largest deficits in U.S. history. The ensuing $3 trillion dollars in red ink prompted the tea party movement and led to the largest midterm defeat of the Democratic Party in the House of Representatives since 1938.

    No matter. The president has proposed a new budget with an even larger, $1.6 trillion deficit. That record federal borrowing prompted columnist Charles Krauthammer to describe it as Louis XV indulgence, an allusion to the wild royal spending that brought about the French Revolution. Even Newsweek editor at large Evan Thomas, who once gushed that Obama stood “above the world” as some “sort of God,” called the president’s new budget a “profile in cowardice.” After Obama leaves office, a perfect storm of rising international interest rates, an anemic dollar and panic on the part of foreign lenders may force an end to this unhinged American rush to borrow and blow what it has not earned.

    Gas prices in many parts of the country are nearing $4 a gallon; it could get even worse as unrest spreads throughout the oil-exporting Middle East. Yet the Obama administration once again seems to see no crisis. It has curtailed new leases for offshore oil exploration for seven years and exempted thousands of acres in the West from new drilling. It will not reconsider opening up small areas of Alaska with known large oil reserves.

    Instead, the administration in 2009 pushed through cap-and-trade legislation in the House on the dubious proposition that humans are causing the planet to warm up. Accordingly, the administration would like to tax further the already high price of fossil fuels rather than go all out to look for more. Yet importing more oil from abroad and growing more subsidized biofuels at home will lead to a disastrous trifecta of borrowing even more money, ensuring greater global pollution and causing higher world food prices.

    Obamacare — the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act — was pushed through the Senate in 2009 through backroom deal-making and special perks for fence-sitting senators. The premise was that it would save both patients and the nation billions of dollars. But updated estimates now suggest that the takeover of health care will cost the country about $2 trillion over the next decade while disrupting and making more costly existing health plans.

    That worry may explain why the administration has quietly granted waivers from its own “affordable” plan to some 700 organizations covering 2 million workers — 40 percent of them union members. Long after the president has left office, everyone else who is not so privileged to be exempted will have to live with the consequence of a cumbersome and costly new federal health bureau.

    The president just weighed in on the Wisconsin budget deadlock, suggesting that Gov. Scott Walker was out to punish public-sector unions more than to figure out a way to close a $3 billion state deficit. But unlike the federal government, Walker cannot print money, and he cannot so easily raise taxes without losing residents who might flee to lower-tax states. That the president wants unions to know he is on their side is clear; that he cares how the people of Wisconsin are going to pay for sky-high public-employee wages, benefits and health care is not so evident.

    In these lean times of nearly 10 percent unemployment and rapid hikes in gas and food prices, the president has chastised “fat cat” Wall Street bankers, the wealthy who jet to the Super Bowl, those who junket to Las Vegas, and in general suggested that strapped American families might wish to “sacrifice” and “put off a vacation.” But in “let them eat cake” style, the first family seems tone-deaf to the potential symbolism of postponing its own exclusive vacations. Michele Obama just returned from skiing at an elite Vail, Colo., resort. Last summer in Marie Antoinette fashion, she jetted to Costa del Sol in Spain for a costly Mediterranean vacation. The rich playground at Martha’s Vineyard, not Camp David, seems now to be the favorite presidential recession-era getaway spot.

    Shortly after Barack Obama leaves office, we are all going to have to eat cake. Then a less eloquent president will have to balance budgets, pay off trillions in new debt, develop more energy, come up with a sane health-care policy, and in symbolic fashion have the first family share the sacrifice of a more mundane lifestyle.

  171. pm317,

    I am so beyond disgusted by the POS. Anyone else find it sickening that it parties at the WH tonight with the best of motown while the world burns, the country lurches toward who-knows-what and the economy continues to drown?

    I confess I hate the SOB.

  172. S,

    Yes, unconditional love. There’s no substitute for it. I interviewed a guy who trains and works with therapy dogs yesterday. The stories he told me about people at psychiatric hospitals who hadn’t spoken in years suddenly communicating when he brings his magnificent german shepherds in for a visit were wonderful.

    BTW, anyone else furious that it has shut down the space program? Today’s the last voyage for space shuttle discovery. It just wants to destroy everything good about the country. That’s honestly how I feel.

  173. I don’t believe in any dooms day stuff.

    Things change, idiots rule and then get kicked out.

    The greedy grab and the majority fight back.

    Most counties are led by greedy men that create wars over dirt, resources and religion.

    MANkind is foolish and they create their own problems.

    Just another day on planet Earth.

  174. rgbhrc44

    I pray you are right.

    ‘Assuming Carville’s Law, “It’s the Economy, Stupid”, is still valid, Obama can start planning reeeeeal long vacations in two years…’

  175. ‘Shortly after Barack Obama leaves office, we are all going to have to eat cake. Then a less eloquent president will have to balance budgets, pay off trillions in new debt, develop more energy, come up with a sane health-care policy, and in symbolic fashion have the first family share the sacrifice of a more mundane lifestyle.’

    And the BO’s will get off scott-free.

    😡

  176. Dishonest summary:

    Gov. Scott Walker’s efforts to require public employees to increase contributions to their retirement and health-insurance plans, and to rein in their collective-bargaining power to negotiate for higher benefits.

  177. Anyone who underestimates Koch, like Soros, needs a serious reality check.

    ==================

    Aw, couldn’t we just cage-match ’em?

    And the monsters of yesteryear, Scaife, Murdoch, Queen Elizabeth….

  178. pm317,

    I agree. They are despicable fothermuckers. I loathe this nasty couple and I am counting the months until the 2012 elections praying that he is deposed but fearful he will hang on. My hate-meter is off the charts. When I think of how he has single-handedly destroyed the housing market, business, the healthcare system, not to mention his venous affect on citizen morale, his American-hating disrespecting of the country, his support or silence on enemies of the country, of oppressors of women, his treatment of HRC, I am beyond words.

    I never liked Bush and I confess to screaming at the TV when his mug showed up but in retrospect I didn’t realize how well off the country was back then. Plus, his TV appearances were few and far between compared to this camera-hog.

    Do you think it’s possible he will get a 2nd term? I swear if that happens I will have to throw the tv and restrict myself to trusted blogs and websites.

  179. The president just weighed in on the Wisconsin budget deadlock, suggesting that Gov. Scott Walker was out to punish public-sector unions more than to figure out a way to close a $3 billion state deficit. But unlike the federal government, Walker cannot print money, and he cannot so easily raise taxes without losing residents who might flee to lower-tax states. That the president wants unions to know he is on their side is clear; that he cares how the people of Wisconsin are going to pay for sky-high public-employee wages, benefits and health care is not so evident.
    **************************
    Walker cannot print money and he cannot easily raise taxes, but he has no trouble cutting corporate taxes.

  180. I never liked Bush and I confess to screaming at the TV when his mug showed up but in retrospect I didn’t realize how well off the country was back then. Plus, his TV appearances were few and far between compared to this camera-hog.

    Do you think it’s possible he will get a 2nd term? I swear if that happens I will have to throw the tv and restrict myself to trusted blogs and websites.
    ***************************
    I screamed through 8 years of G. W. Bush, where are the people, why aren’t they taking to the streets to protest this administrations trashing of the constitution. Now they finally are, and they are being called greedy, selfish and worse. And if the Republicans don’t get a serious candidate to run against Obama, he will win a 2nd term. So far we have Newt Gingerich (discredited and a has been), Donald Trump (please), Haley Barbour (I can’t take him seriously), Mike Huckabee (pleasant enough now but he got pretty nasty last time he ran), Mitt Romney (he’s run and lost), etc. Where are the serious substnantive repub candidates? I’d rather see a good dem run against Obama, but doesn’t seem likely at this point.

  181. I want Obama shown up for what he truly is, incompetent, and discredited, his reputation in tatters and thrown back to the swamp where he came from — he can go sit in Wright’s church for the rest of his life.

  182. **************************
    Walker cannot print money and he cannot easily raise taxes, but he has no trouble cutting corporate taxes.

    —————-

    Walker’s corporate tax cut was not just some mindless giveaway to the rich. He offered a two year tax cut to businesses that will relocate to WI, with the requirement that at least 51% of their payroll have to be WI citizens. He also did a temporary payroll tax cut for new jobs created by existing businesses.

    That’s a smart move to get businesses into WI and provide jobs, which should in turn increase revenue. I’m really tired of people just characterizing what he did as “free money for the rich!” without explaining what, exactly, he did. Because what he did is not at all like the left keeps portraying it.

  183. And now for a Ripley’s believe it or not moment…

    Sharon Stone Seeks to Restrain Hillary Clinton’s “Son”

    Sharon Stone says she doesn’t want to be on receiving end of a Basic Instinct-esque storyline.

    And now she’s trying to shut down the person she says she’s living “in fear” of—a man who claims he wrote the Oscar-nominated The King’s Speech when he was just 2 and that he is an FBI agent who is the son of Hillary Clinton.

    But that’s not all.

    The actress has just obtained a restraining order against Bradly Gooden, who, according to Los Angeles police, broke into her L.A. house and waited there for her to arrive.

    According to her court papers, the 38-year-old Gooden claims he was a child prodigy “I have been subjected to a course of conduct which has and is seriously alarming, annoying and harassing me,” Stone states in her filing. “I am in fear from Mr. Gooden for my personal safety, and that of those around me, including especially my children and family, as well as my friends and employees.”

    Gooden had broken into Stone’s house on Feb. 11 and was found inside the residence by police. At the time, he told cops he had traveled to the actresses house from Ohio because his mom—Hillary Clinton—bought it from Stone as a gift to him. The complaint says Gooden had given his name to police as Bobby Joe Clinton.

    “It’s now my house, I live here,” Gooden told police when he was caught.

    He was then placed on psychiatric hold and released to a halfway house on Monday, but has been insistent the house really does belong to him and “seems undeterred from returning to the property,” according to the documents.

    “Gooden is a mentally ill individual who has been evaluated by authorities and mental health professionals as delusional and is possibly a delusional schizophrenic,” the court docs read. “Gooden compulsively traveled across country to locate [Stone] and her house, which he delusionally believes was given to him, and was recently discovered inside.”

    Stone, 51, was granted a temporary restraining order that prohibits Gooden from going within 100 yards of her or her children, Roan, Laird and Quinn. He also can’t contact her indirectly over the phone or by email.

    http://ca.eonline.com/uberblog/b227754_sharon_stone_seeks_restrain_hillary.html

  184. I don’t know, but every time I picture Barry, it’s either his motorcade taking him to play bball, or wandering the halls of the WhiteHouse completely zoned out.

    If he is depressed, it’s probably because he thought he won the job of King, and didn’t realize he had to do more than vote present. After all, wasn’t that why he put in so many czars…to think for him?

  185. I want Obama shown up for what he truly is, incompetent, and discredited, his reputation in tatters and thrown back to the swamp where he came from — he can go sit in Wright’s church for the rest of his life.
    ——————————–
    AMEN.

  186. “is there no hope that the American People can come out of this thing in one piece, or is the system too far gone for anyone to solve?’
    **********
    I agree that many people are good as describing the problems but solutions are non-existent. (Republican-theocrats would disagree.) The political system is now geared to help the few grab as much as they can, while they can, and have the remaining 99% fight over the scraps.

    This country and the world are headed over the cliff and “business as usual” won’t work. The major driving forces toward the cliff are rapidly expanding World Population and the end of cheap energy. The extremes of opinion to the “facts” are (!)”Doomers”believe that the result will be world population collapse and (2)religious fundamentalists “nothing to worry about, god wouldn’t let “it” get that bad. Well it is going to get bad and, at least in this country, I don’t see anything in politics/government that is going to work for the majority of Americans. At least in my remaining lifetime, I thinks as social conditions continue to deteriorate, the politic will be driven more toward the theocratic right. The chances that the politics will trend toward a “New Deal” is not likely“
    ——————————————————
    “If I am right, it will be a slow process for our people to reach rational views, assuming that we are allowed to work peacefully toward that end. But as I grow older I grow calm. If I feel what are perhaps an old man’s apprehensions, that competition from new races will cut deeper than working men’s disputes and will test whether we can hang together and fight; if I fear that we are running through the world’s resources at a pace we cannot keep, I do not lose my hopes. I do not pin my dreams for the future to either my country or even my race. I think it probable that civilization will last as long as I care to look ahead—perhaps in smaller numbers but perhaps also bred to greatness and splendor by science. I think it not improbable that man, like the grub that prepares a chamber for the winged thing it has never seen but is to be—that man may have cosmic destinies that he does not understand. And so beyond the vision of battling races and an impoverished earth I catch the dreaming glimpse of peace.”—Holmes, 1913

  187. The major driving forces toward the cliff are rapidly expanding World Population and the end of cheap energy.
    [….]
    Holmes 1913:
    if I fear that we are running through the world’s resources at a pace we cannot keep, I do not lose my hopes. [….] I think it probable that civilization will last as long as I care to look ahead—perhaps in smaller numbers but perhaps also bred to greatness and splendor by science.

    ============

    I’m glad somebody’s noticed.

    For a while after two world wars things picked up, and of course cell phones still are.

  188. “If I am right, it will be a slow process for our people to reach rational views, assuming that we are allowed to work peacefully toward that end. But as I grow older I grow calm. If I feel what are perhaps an old man’s apprehensions, that competition from new races will cut deeper than working men’s disputes and will test whether we can hang together and fight; if I fear that we are running through the world’s resources at a pace we cannot keep, I do not lose my hopes. I do not pin my dreams for the future to either my country or even my race. I think it probable that civilization will last as long as I care to look ahead—perhaps in smaller numbers but perhaps also bred to greatness and splendor by science. I think it not improbable that man, like the grub that prepares a chamber for the winged thing it has never seen but is to be—that man may have cosmic destinies that he does not understand. And so beyond the vision of battling races and an impoverished earth I catch the dreaming glimpse of peace.”—Holmes, 1913
    *********
    I agree with the “long view” of Holmes. It took roughly 100,000 years for the population of modern humans to reach 1 billion in the early 1800’s. Population of 7 billion mid-2012 and 9 billion 2040 is likely. As Holmes said things will change and “that man may have cosmic destinies that he does not understand”. From our prospective the process of change and reaching a different biological equilibrium will not be pleasant. However, over the past 4 1/2 billions years a lot of change has occurred and the earth keeps on moving on.

  189. “I believe Obamaism is a mental disorder.”

    ————————-

    Well if it wasn’t to begin with, it sure will be by the time he is finished destroying everything in his path.

  190. Since I have only visited here sporadically, I don’t know if this was posted here in the past week or so.

    Sex and Murder in The Land of Obama? (Ulstermann FWIW)

    Newsflavor ^ | 02/14/2011 | Ulstermann

    Posted on Monday, February 14, 2011 11:36:17 AM by PhilosopherStone1000

    A shocking tale of Barack Obamas behavior following a high profile Chicago gathering of Democratic Party elites shortly before Obama won election to the Illinois State Senate.

    From The Ulsterman: This story came to me via a message to my Facebook account. Upon reading what the author had to say, and doing some preliminary investigation to attempt at least partial corroboration, I have finally determined, following what appears to be both a sincere and earnest request, to publish this recollection of what they say they saw from Barack Obama and a now deceased man who was in Barack Obamas presence that night. The following is their recollection in its entirety no editing has been done. I leave it to the readers to determine for themselves the validity of what the author of this story claims to have seen.

    _______________________________

    I was an intern for a local Chicago newspaper and a college student working toward a journalism degree. This happened before Barack Obamawas president. It happened a short time before he became a state senator in Illinois. He was not the big name he would become just a few years later, but around Chicago he was a big enough name that I recognized who he was when I saw him. His book has just been published and he had received some recognition locally for it, and I had actually seen him on campus a couple of times the year before. He was an up and comer.

    Anyways, I got the chance to attend this big dinner/party/celebration event downtown that had everybody who was anybody in Chicago at the time. It was an event that took place just before the big Democratic Party convention. The mayor was to give a talk and I was told to do a write up of the mayors comments and if possible, get a short interview. (I did not get the interview) I would figure about three or four hundred people were there. Lots of money and power in the room. As the night went on the drinking and noise levels both escalated. I remember being a bit shocked to see these kind of people carrying on like they were, but it was also exciting to be around it. I want to emphasize though that I was not drinking. I was clear headed the entire night. I saw what I saw. I know what I know.

    Just before I was going to leave, I ran into one of my professors and sat down to have a talk. I remember being pretty excited that she actually remembered me, and even more excited that she seemed to want to ask me how I was doing and whatnot. I also remember she did seem a little drunk. We ended up sitting and talking for almost an hour and by the time she stood up to leave there were maybe just twenty or so people still hanging around. Everyone else had left.

    I decided to look for a bathroom before taking off myself and followed a sign that led me down a hall that had all the lights already turned off. There were about four doors to the left that were to conference rooms, with a sign on the right of the hall pointing further down to the bathrooms. I was a little spooked because it was so dark but managed to find the bathroom. When I came back out I noticed one of the doors to a conference room was about halfway open. I had remembered that no doors had been open before and I got a little freaked out. I hesitated because I was afraid to walk by the door. That was when I heard the voices. Or not so much voices but I heard sounds being made by a person or people. I also smelled something that was odd. Never smelled it before or since that night. A heavy sweet smell that was filling up the hallway. It was not marijuana or anything like that. I was in college. I was plenty familiar with what marijuana smelled like. Something different. And as I stood there not quite sure what to do the smell seemed to go from sweet to kind of gross like rotting garbage. It was weird.

    I started to try and sneak past the open door so whoever was in there couldnt hear me but I sure could hear them and that was when I realized the sounds coming out of that conference room were sexual. I heard a male voice saying Yeah, again and again and then another sound from another male voice. I realized then that there were at least two men in that room having sex with themselves or someone else I could not hear. I was almost past the door when I heard a loud sniffing noise, and more of that weird smell coming from the room, and then one of the men yelled out the F-word. And thats when I tripped. I tried to fall as quietly as I could but when my right hand hit the floor it kind of twisted under me and it really hurt. I cried out and then was trying to get up as fast as I could so I could keep heading down the hall. I heard some scrambling from inside the dark conference room and then one of the men told the other one to shut up and be quiet.

    And then the door opened behind me and I turned around and saw a young tall thin black man looking at me. I recognized the face but wasnt sure of the name right away, but was pretty sure he was someone important. I told him I was just using the bathroom but knew I must have looked very embarrassed. He just stared at me for what seemed like forever. There was just enough light in that hall that I could see that his eyes were not really right. I thought he was probably drunk. Then his eyes seemed to suddenly clear up and become a lot more focused and he looked down at me and he gave a big smile. He asked me if I was ok. I looked down to his belt which was undone and I could see that his dress shirt was not tucked into his pants. When I looked back up at his face the smile was long gone. He looked really angry at me now. He asked me again if I was ok but he said it in a way that really spooked me. There was something in his voice that scared me. Really bad. And it was at that exact moment I finally recognized his face as the author and political candidate Barack Obama. I was just about to turn and walk as fast as I could out of the hallway when the door opened wider and another black mans face poked out. He said, What the F is going on B? The guy I now recognized as Obama stepped all the way out of the hall and closed the door behind him, leaving the other man inside the conference room. He asked me again if I was all right. Now he was standing right over me. He smiled again and I noticed one of his front teeth seemed to have a chip in it, or it was a lot shorter than the other one. He must have had work done because the pictures of him today dont show that. I dont know why I noticed that so much or why it has stuck with me but it has. And his breath smelled really bad. It made me want to gag it was so bad. I told him I was fine and did a kind of half walk half run down the hall and back into the main lobby. I looked back right before I turned the corner and could make out Barack Obama still standing in the darkness of the hallway looking back at me. It was very very creepy.

    I didnt really make much out of it. I mentioned it in a joking way to some friends that I had interrupted some guys going at it in a conference room but never mentioned the name Obama when I did. Then I forgot about it pretty much until I was watching the news and saw that Obama was running for U.S. Senator. I figured whatever he was doing in his private life was his business though, and didnt want to make any trouble for him. I actually agreed with his politics and voted for him. If he was gay or bisexual, I really could have cared less. Whatever issues he had with that were between him and his family and none of my business right? Thats how I felt. So I forgot all about what I saw on that night again. And I hardly thought of it when I heard Barack Obama was running for president.

    Thats until I heard a news story coming from my television while I was making dinner. A man had been murdered. Shot numerous times at his home. I glanced up at the television and there was the now dead mans face being shown. He looked older. Heavier. His hair was longer. But it was him. That was the same face that I had seen poke out from the conference room with Barack Obama about ten years earlier. The news report said he was a church choir conductor and school teacher. They didnt mention it was the same church as Barack Obama. I found that out a short time later. Then I learned that another gay man from Obamas church had been murdered about a month before. That is when I started to really freak out. I kept my mouth shut and didnt say a word about what I had seen. Then I started to feel like I was being watched. I would see a car parked outside my apartment that wasnt any of my neighbors. One time I caught a man staring at me from across the street as I was getting my mail. I worried I was losing my mind from way too much paranoia.

    I have since moved away from Chicago. I have tried to forget all about what I saw, but it wont leave my head. Im scared. So now Im telling you this. I have been reading your stuff and think that the way you are doing it is giving you enough protection to get out your information but also protecting you. So if you could do the same for me I would be very grateful. I need to tell this story, but I dont want to be known for doing it. That scares me too much. So the same way you seem to protect yourself and your sources I am hoping you can do for me. I have to get this off my chest. Part of me says I should have said something sooner but another part of me says that maybe I would not be around today if I had done that. I know what I saw and I know what I heard. I know who I saw. Maybe it was some kind of phase he was going through at the time. Maybe he was experimenting with a different lifestyle. Maybe the death of that man was just a coincidence. I dont know the answers to that. I just know what I know. I just know what I heard and saw. On that night I heard Barack Obama in that conference room with another man. I saw Barack Obamastep out of that room with another man. I smelled what I think was some kind of drug they were using. And I know that the other man who was in that room with Barack Obama was murdered about ten years later shortly after Barack Obama declared he was running for President of the United States.

    That is my story. I hope that you share it. If something happens to me now, you will know why.

    _________

    UPDATE: Since publication, many within the Ulsterman Facebook Army have come forward with evidence that would support some of the specific claims made within the recollection above. The strange smell coming from the conference room would most likely have been poppers, a drug that is used predominantly within the gay community. Its smell is said to alter quickly from sweet to that of rank, dirty laundry. Its effects last only a few minutes, indicating a user could recover quickly after inhaling it. Second, both video and photo evidence were provided that show considerable work has been done on Barack Obamas teeth. Here is video from 1995, evidence that would further corroborate the timeline of this story, showing just how extensive this dental work in fact was. The alteration to both Obamas appearance and speech is remarkable, and one of the front teeth does appear to be considerably shorter and/or of a very different shape than the other, which again compliments the details found in the recollection above:

    Research also uncovered the fact that Chicago Democrats, playing host to the national convention in August of 1996, held a number of large social events throughout that summer, including a visit by then President Bill Clinton during the first week of July events that were described in some detail by the Chicago Tribune on July 4th, 1996:

    The crowds, the parties, the security and the hoopla that accompanied President Clintons visit to Chicago, plus the meeting of Democratic leaders last weekend, provided test runs for the Aug. 26-29 Democratic National Convention, organizers said.

    Even the Chicago 96 decorations that adorned Navy Pier and the red, white and blue lights atop the Hancock and Stone Container buildings were previews of what to expect later this summer, said Julie Thompson, spokeswoman for the civic host committee.

    Certainly Barack Obama, already a fixture in the Democratic Party machine by 1996, and the Democratic Party candidate for state senate, would have attended some or all of those large gatherings. And equally certain would be Chicago Mayor Richard Daleys presence at those same events the same Richard Daley whose brother now serves as Barack Obamas White House Chief of Staff.

    Thank you to all those members of the Ulsterman Facebook Army who helped bring this information to light so quickly.

    (COMMENT)

    Take this for what it’s worth, but it does seem to provide further evidence of something that HillBuzz alluded to a few months back, namely the murders of not one, but three gay members of Trinity United Church after the ascension of Dumb0 up the ranks of the Dim Party.

  191. By the way, none of what I copied and pasted above was written by me other than the first line of text. I keep remembering what Larry Sinclair said. Someday the truth will come out and it will be accepted as fact because there will be too much collaboration of the truth amongst those who know.

  192. cnsnews.com/news/article/cbo-jobs-created-and-saved-stimulus-cost#

    CBO: Jobs Created and Saved By Stimulus Cost At Minimum An Average of $228,055 Each
    Thursday, February 24, 2011
    By Matt Cover

    (CNSNews.com) – The jobs created and saved by the economic stimulus law that President Barack Obama signed on Feb. 17, 2009 cost at a minimum an average of $228,055 each, according to data released yesterday by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO).

    In a report released Wednesday—“Estimated Impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act on Employment and Economic Output from October Through December 2010”—the CBO said it now estimates the stimulus law cost a total of $821 billion, up from CBO’s original estimate that the stimulus would cost $787 billion.

    In the same report, the CBO estimated that in the fourth quarter of 2010 there were somewhere between 1.3 million and 3.5 million people who were then employed who would not have been had the stimulus not been enacted. “CBO estimates,” says the report, “that ARRA’s policies had the following effects in the fourth quarter of calendar year 2010: … Increased the number of people employed by between 1.3 million and 3.5 million.”

    This estimate seeks to state the net impact the stimulus had on the number of people employed in the United States as a result of the stimulus, taking into account not only the new jobs believed to be created and the existing jobs believed to be killed by the stimulus, but also the existing jobs that were saved that otherwise would have been lost.

    The CBO’s estimate that there were 1.3 million to 3.5 million people employed in the fourth quarter of 2010 who would not have been were it not for the stimulus represents a decline from the 1.4 million to 3.6 million people CBO estimated were employed as a result the stimulus during the third quarter of 2010. (See Table 1 in the report.) In fact, CBO now estimates that the apogee of the stimulus’s net job-creating-and-saving power occurred in the third quarter of 2010 when it believes somewhere between 1.4 million and 3.6 million people had jobs they would not have had except for the stimulus.

    Thus, the $821 billion cost of the stimulus divided by the maximum of 3.6 million jobs the CBO believes the stimulus may have saved or created equals an average of $228,055 per job.

    At the lower end of the CBO’s top job-creating-and-saving estimate for the stimulus—1.4 million jobs—the jobs would cost an average of $586,428 a piece.

    In February 2009, when President Obama signed the stimulus law the national unemployment rate was 8.2 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In January 2011, the national unemployment rate was 9.0 percent.

    *************************************************************

    and most of those jobs were low paying service jobs…

    can you imagine, the jobs “created” by O cost an average of $228,000 spent for a low paying, service type, job that pays maybe $10-12 hour if you are lucky and can find it with college educated professionals fighting for them amongst unemployed college kids and seniors forced to come out of retirement to hold on to their homes…

    what a disgrace…and add this to O’s failure foreclosure program…just what the hell is this man good for? oh right, partying tonight to Motown…

    wake up america…wake up

  193. Speaking about Larry Sinclair, the following is from his blog. I have also attached a confirming video to what he wrote about.

    http://www.larrysinclair.org/2011/02/19/madison-wi-doctors-give-dr-notes-to-protesting-teachers/

    Something has to be said about Teacher’s who call off sick so they can protest at the state capital in Wisconsin. Every single Teacher who has called off sick and ended up in protest rallies should be fired immediately. Even worse is the Doctor’s who are knowingly committing fraud by setting up stations near the Madison, WI State House issuing “Doctor’s notes” excusing these Teachers from work!

    Doctors from numerous hospitals set up a station near the Capitol to provide notes covering public employees’ absences. Family physician Lou Sanner, 59, of Madison, said he had given out hundreds of notes. Many of the people he spoke with seemed to be suffering from stress, he said.

    “What employers have a right to know is if the patient was assessed by a duly licensed physician about time off of work,” Sanner said. “Employers don’t have a right to know the nature of that conversation or the nature of that illness. So it’s as valid as every other work note that I’ve written for the last 30 years.”

    Unions have come to think the only thing that matters in this Country any more is what benefits them. Teachers making on average $80,000 a year in wages and benefits simply should not keep their jobs when they knowingly lie about being sick and use doctor excuses issued by doctors such as Lou Sanner who admit to committing fraud.

    It seems the Unions have learned something from the rest of America who understand that the US and the individual States have to do something about the run-a-way debt. Unions have learned the phrase “Kill The Bill” from the Obamacare debates. What is happening in Wisconsin will without a doubt happen in almost every state in this nation. When it does we will have Barack Obama and the DNC busing in union supporters to protest just like they have in Wisconsin. Maybe supporters of Gov Scott Walker should borrow a play from the unions play book. Maybe protester’s should camp out in front of the homes of each of the 14 Senate Democrats who have fled Wisconsin and abandoned their positions.

  194. Admin: I have a post at 11:09pm that is in moderation. I have a couple of links in it. One is to the Larry Sinclair blog while the other is a Youtube video that supports what he wrote about. Could you please release it if you feel it is worthy of your blog?

  195. I agree with the “long view” of Holmes. It took roughly 100,000 years for the population of modern humans to reach 1 billion in the early 1800’s. Population of 7 billion mid-2012 and 9 billion 2040 is likely. As Holmes said things will change and “that man may have cosmic destinies that he does not understand”. From our prospective the process of change and reaching a different biological equilibrium will not be pleasant. However, over the past 4 1/2 billions years a lot of change has occurred and the earth keeps on moving on.

    =======================

    I’ve seen it put elsewhere as:

    “It took Xmillion years to develop an opposible thumb. Maybe eventually we’ll get it out of our ___.”

  196. to flee or not to flee…who cares?…nah! party on…!

    huffingtonpost.com/huff-wires/20110224/us-obama-motown/

    White Parties and Reverberates to Motown

    WASHINGTON — The White House reverberated like a long-ago basement sound studio in Detroit on Thursday as the likes of John Legend, Seal, Jamie Foxx, Nick Jonas and Sheryl Crow channeled their inner Motown before Michelle and Barack Obama. Musical pioneers Smokey Robinson and Stevie Wonder joined in for the celebration of all things Motown.

    Obama called it “the soundtrack of the civil rights era,” and credited Motown’s tight lyrics, catchy melodies and deep soul with helping to “blur the line between music that was considered either black or white.”

    Foxx, Seal, Legend and Jonas launched the East Room concert celebrating the Motown sound with a high-energy medley in which the four took turns as backup dancers, complete with some smooth dance moves to the likes of “Get Ready,” “The Way You Do the Things You Do,” “Can’t Get Next to You” and “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg.”

    Not to be outdone, the trio of Natasha Bedingfield, Jordin Sparks and Ledisi took a Supremes-esque turn singing “Stop! In the Name of Love.”

    Legend delivered a soulful rendition of “Heard It Through the Grapevine” that left Foxx, who also served as the program’s host, to joke that nowadays the story was more likely to be “heard it through my Twitter.”

    “I’m going to tweet it right now,” he joked.

    Obama and the singers paid homage to the genuine Motown greats in the lineup: Robinson and Wonder. And Motown founder Berry Gordy was in the audience to hear Obama recount his record label’s modest beginnings in a basement on West Grand Boulevard in Detroit, decorated with a banner outside that read “Hitsville, USA.”

    Story continues below

    snip

    “You can still put that music on now and get the party going,” he said.

    Michelle Obama told the young people that the color-barrier-shattering music of her youth “was so much more than just a soundtrack. It was a heartbeat.”

    “As Motown rose, so did the forces of change in this country,” she said. “During that time, it was the time of King and Kennedy, it was a time of marches and rallies and groundbreaking civil rights laws.”

    The first lady introduced Robinson and Gordy as “true trailblazers,” adding:

    “There wouldn’t be an Usher if there wasn’t a Smokey Robinson. You know, there wouldn’t be an Alicia Keys without a Gladys Knight.”

    And she confessed to a soft spot for one Motown artist in particular: “Who’s my favorite?” she asked aloud. “Stevie Wonder, yes indeed.”

    Fans who didn’t make the guest list for the concert can see it Tuesday on PBS’ “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House.”

    ************************************************************

    our president and “his” administration at work…gee, what would they be doing if the world and our country weren’t falling apart and on fire???

  197. February 24, 2011
    Time for U.S. to scale back its role in world affairs?

    President Obama makes a statement on Libya with Secretary of State Clinton at the White House.

    FROM CNN’s Jack Cafferty:

    President Obama finally spoke out Wednesday on the crisis in Libya. He condemned the violence against anti-government protesters and announced that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will be meeting with top diplomats on Monday to discuss how to respond to violence in the region.

    However, the president stopped short of calling for the resignation of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi or announcing any sanctions the United States would place on that nation.

    The president is expected to speak with French President Nicolas Sarkozy and British Prime Minister David Cameron by phone on Thursday to discuss the unfolding situation in Libya.

    All of this happened after the president didn’t say anything for the first few days of the crisis. He was reportedly concerned about the safety of Americans inside Libya. It turns out not saying anything is not necessarily a bad thing, according to a new Gallup Poll.

    While 66% of Americans think the United States should play either the leading or a major role in resolving international problems, 32% say the United States should be a minor player or not get involved at all. That’s up from 23% just two years ago, and at its highest level since 2001.

    But as tensions mount and the stakes get higher, which they inevitably do when oil is involved, it’s unlikely the United States will remain on the sidelines indefinitely.

    Here’s my question to you: Is it time for the U.S. to scale back its role in world affairs?

    [and here are some of the answers:]

    James in Greenville, North Carolina:
    Yes it is, Jack. Time for us to mind our own business for a while. And while the Federal government is minding its own business then maybe they will stay out of each state’s business. I do not think the Federal government is doing a very good job of managing our own national affairs so maybe we should not be trying to manage everyone else’s.

    A.E.:
    Times have changed. The cold war is over. There is no need to play policeman to the world. This is the New World Order and the U.S. needs to adjust to the realities of the present day.

    Lawrence:
    Jack, until the Western World learns how to tap into other sources of energy rather than being dependent on oil, we just can’t scale back. We are too deep into oil to think straight. It’s time we tap into more green resources.

    Paul in Parry Sound, Ontario:
    It’s time to scale back the military role, but not the humanitarian.

    Mark in Voorhees, New Jersey:
    I would call Gates tonight and tell him I want to be out of Iraq and Afghanistan by Monday. A billion dollars a day? And they want to lay off teachers? Troops in Germany? For what? Whoever decided we are the World Police, it’s time to change that decision now.

    Paul:
    We need to maintain a high profile in world affairs. We need to trade for the things we need now and in the future, oil, rare earth metals, things that our competitors are actively pursuing. Our democracy was born of revolution. We take a lot of pride in our history of Valley Forge, Boston Massacre, Shot heard ’round the world, etc. We did it with help from Europeans. We need to support the attempts at forming democracies in the Middle East and wherever they occur. It will pay off in the long run.

    Richard:
    This is a no-brainer! Other countries hate us if we give them money or if we don’t. Reduce foreign giveaways by at least 25% and reduce the deficit by that amount each year. We are broke. Keep the money in the USA.

    [In effect, this “Richard” has no brain!]

  198. Many people don’t understand our country’s problem of concentration of income and wealth because they don’t see it. People just don’t understand how much wealth there is at the top now. The wealth at the top is so extreme that it is beyond most people’s ability to comprehend.

    There are a few people who make hundreds of millions of income in a single year. Some people make more than $1 billion in a year But that is in a single year. If you make vast sums every year, after a while it starts to add up. (And then there is the story of inherited wealth, passed down and growing for generation after generation…)

    Top 1% owns more than 90% of us combined. “In 2007, the latest year for which figures are available from the Federal Reserve Board, the richest 1% of U.S. households owned 33.8% of the nation’s private wealth. That’s more than the combined wealth of the bottom 90 percent.”

    400 people have as much wealth as half of our population. The combined net worth of the Forbes 400 wealthiest Americans in 2007: $1.5 trillion. The combined net worth of the poorest 50% of American households: $1.6 trillion.

    The top 1% also own 50.9% of all stocks, bonds, and mutual fund assets. The top 10% own 90.3%.

    400 people have as much wealth as half of our population. The combined net worth of the Forbes 400 wealthiest Americans in 2007: $1.5 trillion. The combined net worth of the poorest 50% of American households: $1.6 trillion.

    ————-

    These snippets don’t do the page justice. Please have a look.
    http://www.seeingtheforest.com/archives/2011/02/nine_pictures_o_1.htm

  199. I thought incest was against the law? So, why is the Obama WH allowed to send surrogates from the public sector into the private sector to (wink-wink) go to work for a Green Energy company that will receive government funding from Tax Payer dollars controlled by an anti-American investor? How sleepy-eyed has the Justice Dept and Congress become?
    ________________________

    New Soros investment fund, profiting off Obama’s ‘green energy’ push, hires top Obama energy aide

    By: Timothy P. Carney 02/24/11

    Senior Political Columnist

    George Soros — whom we’re always told is not serving his own economic interests at all by promoting liberal politicians and big-government policies — is launching a new investment fund that plans to profit off of the “green energy” boom, which is entirely dependent on government subsidies supported by the groups Soros funds.

    As the press release puts it, this fund will “leverage technology and business model innovation to improve energy efficiency, reduce waste and emissions, harness renewable energy, and more efficiently use natural resources, among other applications.” As Soros puts it in the same release: “Developing alternative sources of energy and achieving greater energy efficiency is both a significant global investment opportunity and an environmental imperative.” Cadie Thompson at CNBC’s NetNet flagged this.

    So, yeah. The big-government policies advanced by the liberal outfits he funds — like Center for American Progress — will enrich the companies in which Soros is investing.

    But this story gets better.

    The press release casually mentions whom Soros is hiring to run this new fund: Cathy Zoi. As Cadie Thompson at CNBC’s NetNet (edited by my brother John Carney), puts it,

    Zoi was Barack Obama’s “Acting Under Secretary for Energy and Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.” An Al Gore acolyte, Zoi was Obama’s point-woman on subsidizing green tech. Now she’s going to work for George Soros to profit off of subsidized green tech.

    If you remember Zoi’s name, it’s because of another green-tech conflict of interest: Zoi’s husband is an executive at a window company, Serious Windows, which the White House regularly held up as a “poster child of green industry.”

    The Freedom Foundation of Minnesota put it this way:

    “Ms. Zoi is married to Robin Roy, a top executive at Serious Materials, a privately held manufacturer of ‘sustainable green building materials’ located in California. On the Executive Branch Personnel Public Financial Disclosure submitted by Ms. Zoi to the White House Ethics office as part of her confirmation, Ms. Zoi disclosed ownership with her spouse of 120,000 vested and unvested stock options in Serious Materials, a company her office regulates and that she may profit from.”

    Oh yeah, Serious Materials pocketed federal stimulus money, too.
    But as NetNet’s Thompson puts it:

    But we can put all that behind us, because now Zoi has left the Obama Administration and will go back to work making an honest living in the private sector, where she can put all the knowledge she gained from working for the Department of Energy to work for the private equity firms. Thata girl Zoi!
    __________________

    http://washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/2011/02/new-soros-hedge-fun-profiting-obamas-green-energy-push-hires-top-#

  200. Wis. Assembly passes bill taking away union rights

    MADISON, Wis. — The Wisconsin Assembly early Friday passed a bill that would strip most public workers of their collective bargaining rights — the first significant action on the new Republican governor’s plan.

    The vote put an end to three straight days of punishing debate, but the political standoff over the bill is far from over.

    The Assembly vote sends the bill on to the state Senate, where minority Democrats have been missing for a week. No one knows when — or if — they’ll return from their hideout in Illinois. Republicans who control the Senate sent state troopers out looking for them at their homes on Thursday, but they turned up nothing.

    Gov. Scott Walker’s proposal contains a number of provisions he says are designed to fill the state’s $137 million deficit and lay the groundwork for fixing a projected $3.6 billion shortfall in the upcoming 2011-13 budget. The flashpoint is language that would strip almost all public sector workers of their right to collectively bargain benefits and work conditions.

    Democrats and unions see the measure as an attack on workers’ rights and an attempt to cripple union support for Democrats. Unions have said they would be willing to accept a provision that would increase workers’ contributions to their pensions and health care, provided they could still bargain collectively. But Walker has refused to compromise.

    Tens of thousands of people have jammed the state Capitol since last week to protest, pounding on drums and chanting so loudly that police who are providing security have resorted to ear plugs. Hundreds have taken to sleeping in the building overnight, dragging in air mattresses and blankets.
    _____________________

    If you think this is ugly now… wait for the bloodshed.

  201. Gaddafi is blaming Bin Laden for his problems.. may be his mercenaries will get him, something US has been unable to do because they can’t push their ‘ally’ Pakistan.

  202. Ohanson: “Many people don’t understand our country’s problem of concentration of income and wealth because they don’t see it.”

    This is the “availability bias” of inductive reasoning. People don’t see the ‘problem’ because the information is not available to them. The underlying and fundamentally more important issue is “Why is this information not available?”

    It is available, theoretically, if enough people go to the right source. The data you cite was given on Tarpley’s radio program a few weeks ago, and I repeated it here on this blog. But few people listen to Tarpley, and far fewer yet to me.

    People listen to Big Media. That’s the American Way.

    Then there is the further question, “Is this wealth concentration a problem?” and “If so, what to do about it?”

    Tarpley (and Hillary, and I) also have answers to these latter questions; but the answers are out of line with the Free Enterprise/Free Market memes that prevail among the public. This is again a fault in inductive reasoning, called “confirmation bias”, leading to wilfull self-deception, on the part of the public.

  203. Mrs. Smith’s article:

    “George Soros — whom we’re always told is not serving his own economic interests at all by promoting liberal politicians and big-government policies — is launching a new investment fund that plans to profit off of the “green energy” boom, which is entirely dependent on government subsidies supported by the groups Soros funds.”
    **********

    It seems that, in some people’s eyes, Soros has to be wrong all the time because he’s evil incarnate.

    Is there something wrong with investing in something that you expect to profit from? Sounds like basic the basic economic equation to me!

    Now wait: The green energy boom depends entirely on government subsidies? Then what is investment needed for? Then what is Siemens doing selling €23 billion worth of green energy products each year, taking government subsidies? Then how did Hillary convince the Chinese and Indians to invest in green energy, by telling them to subsidize it? And what does it mean, subsidies supported by groups Soros funds?

    A lot of nonsense in this article…

  204. Al Jazeera: Mutiqa airbase in Tripoli announces that it has joined the revolutionaries…and yes this is a very big deal.

    Reports coming in that security forces tried to seize back control of the coastal town of Zawiyah but were driven back by protesters

    AP: French President Sarkozy says Gaddafi must go and state violence in Libya cannot go unpunished. (Obama crickets)

    AP: The entire Libyan mission in Geneva quitsduring public session

    Bloomberg: #Libya’s Prince Senussi Says Tribes Are United Against Qaddafi

    Looks like Battle of Tripoli underway — and bloody. Protesters against Gaddafi guard and mercenaries.

    Libyan security intercepts caller live on AJE “Get off this phone, give me this phone, you cannot speak to AlJazeera” (god help the guy, he’s probably dead now)

  205. Gaddafi’s finished soon.

    1457: The Guardian correspondent Martin Chulov tweets from Benghazi: “The Mitiga air base is confirmed to have fallen in Tripoli. #Libya. #Ghaddafi. Planes that strafed citizens took off from here.”

    Reports multiplying of army/security force defections and growing crowd of protestors from Toojora area massing and marching towards central Tripoli

  206. BREAKING:…. Reports of a split between members of the Khamis brigade, when confirmed this should signal the end of the tyrant ….3 minutes ago via web

    Very credible reports that Souq al Juma area of Tripoli has fallen out of regime control…..3 minutes ago via TweetDeck

    Not less then 30,000 heading to Green square, people dead in janzoor West of Tripoli Libya ….36 minutes ago via web

  207. Fortunately my friend is not in Tripoli, managed to get a message out of Libya, they are all still hunkered down hiding, i dont want to give you all details until he gets out, i dont want info being pinpointed to their whereabouts.

  208. Jesus what next.

    Pakistani Militants Blow Up 11 NATO Tankers

    Peshawar, Pakistan: Militants in northwestern Pakistan blew up at least 11 tankers carrying fuel for NATO troops in neighbouring Afghanistan Friday, and shot dead four people, police said.

    The rebels struck at a terminal on the outskirts of the city of Peshawar, which runs into Pakistan’s lawless tribal belt.

    “More than two dozen militants entered the terminal and planted timed devices on 12 out of a total 18 fuel tankers parked at the terminal,” senior police official Imtiaz Shah said.

  209. jeswezey
    February 25th, 2011 at 9:25 am

    Mrs. Smith’s article:
    _______________

    Thanks for your comment- I’m a little bit busy today swinging a tiger by the tail. If I can, I may come back later on to respond.

  210. Obama Earmarked $400K For Two Libyan Charities Run by Gaddafi’s Children…

    Remember as a kid drawing connect-the-dots pictures? Simply follow the dots and a clear picture emerges. As an adult, connecting the dots of Obama’s actions leads to an oxymoronic picture. A clear picture of a murky web. Obama’s actions continually link him to people and causes that the majority of Americans do not support. The recent event of another aid ship sailing to Gaza is an example of to whom and what the strands of Obama’s web link him, and unfortunately America.

    Last year, right around the time Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi called Obama “our son,” Obama earmarked $400,000 for two Libyan charities. The money was divided between two foundations run by Gaddafi’s children; Gaddafi International Charity and Development Foundation, run by his son Saif, and Wa Attassimou, run by his daughter Aicha. What noble causes did our tax dollars potentially help support thanks to Obama’s generosity?

    Funding of the ship Amalthea: The Amalthea sailed to Israel with the intent of breaking the Israeli blockade on Hamas. It carried aid for a pseudo humanitarian crisis and supporters who were said to be “keen on expressing solidarity with the Palestinian people in the plight amidst the siege imposed on Gaza.” The ship was funded by Saif Gaddafi’s charity, Gaddafi International Charity and Development Association. Obama’s friend, Bill Ayers, joined attempt #1 against Israel’s blockade on Hamas. Saif joined attempt #2. One has to wonder which of Obama’s friends will step up to the plate at attempt #3.

  211. Reports filtering in: 50,000 protestors from Tajura, a suburb that is 14 kilometers from Tripoli, are heading toward Tripoli

  212. So right…..

    jim Geraghty (Twitter)

    The U.S. discussion about Libya is marked by two unrealistic expectations: for sanity from Qaddafi and for action from Pres Obama.

  213. This should make Obama very nervous., its gonna go next, Facebook again?

    UPDATE 2-Thousands rally in Iraq’s “Day of Rage” protests

    Thousands demonstrate across the country * Iraqis seek better basic services, end to corruption * At least 5 killed, 75 injured in protest clashes (Recasts with details, quotes, updates toll) By Khalid al-Ansary BAGHDAD, Feb 25 (Reuters) – Thousands of Iraqis inspired by uprisings around the Arab world protested on Friday against corruption and poor basic services in nationwide rallies that provoked sporadic clashes with security forces. At least five people were killed and 75 injured in skirmishes during Iraq’s “Day of Rage” when demonstrators tried to storm government buildings and security personnel fired shots in the air to try to disperse them. The most violent clashes occurred in the restive areas of Hawija and Mosul in the oil-rich north and the southern oil hub of Basra, but by late afternoon no insurgent attacks on the protesters had been reported. Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki had warned that al Qaeda and others might attack them. Eight years after the U.S.-led invasion which ousted dictator Saddam Hussein, development remains slow and Iraqis complain of shortages of food rations, water, power and jobs. The Arab world has erupted in protests aimed at ousting long-standing rulers and holding free elections but Iraqis have focused more on gripes over essential needs and corruption. “We are here for change, to improve the situation of the country. The education system is bad. The health system is also bad. Services are going from bad to worse,” said 27-year-old Lina Ali, part of a protest youth group on Facebook.

    read on.

    http://www.latimes.com/sns-rt-iraq-protests-updalde71o11x-20110225,0,1729237.story

  214. moononpluto,

    You would not believe the ‘crickets’ about all of this on American TV. It’s union coverage, Madison Wisconsin, the upcoming grammies with a bit of the Libyan and mideast uprisings interspersed.

    Nothing much on the 4 killed by Somali pirates. Not that much on Libya.

    By your accounts it sounds like the fan is about to meet the proverbial you-know-what.

  215. Basil, you would not believe what you are not seeing, nor would you wish to see it, its utterly horrendous to watch.

    Gaddafi’s goons are pretending to help and using ambulances to murder people.

  216. basil9 is absolutely right about this on American tv. It’s almost as if they are a little nervous that this is getting out of their hands and they hope it will go away.

  217. Moon
    What hold does Gaddafi have on those who are still supporting him? Is this just a matter of being with the group in power and not wanting to give that power up.

  218. My facebook post today:

    In the midst of all this Wisconsin kerfluffle, I’ve had more history thrown at me this week than I can shake a stick at. Yes, we are all aware of the great benefits that labor unions have brought society. I don’t argue with that, not at all, and have great gratitude for all they’ve done in past struggles. But most of those great strides re: hours worked, child labor, employer abuses, etc are now enshrined in LAW, and have little or nothing to do with current collective bargaining. So pardon me if the the fear-mongering that says limiting unions in any way is going to return us to 1924, with half-starved underage miners being driven with force into grossly unsafe mines to slave away for 18 hours until they cough their lungs out and die at 35, rings a little reactionary and hysterical. Ya think?

    Institutions change over time, and the purposes they served once are not always the purposes they serve now. Because it is my nature, looking at history, to be wary of accumulations of power (whatever the source) I have become somewhat wary of unions, despite my support of their intended function in theory. I become even more wary when I see one vast accumulation of power becoming inextricably linked to another accumulation of power. That is true for the govt/corporate nexus, and the govt/union nexus as well. Accumulation of power breeds abuse and overreach. I’ve never seen it happen otherwise, in all of history.

    That’s not to say that I want unions gone. I DON’T. But a rational conversation needs to be had about the changing dynamic in a modern society, and adjustments made to those realities. The unions need to adapt. I predict that if the unions are not willing to do that, then anti-union sentiment will grow. Because at the moment, they are coming across to the public as a VERY powerful entity interested primarily in their own influence, position as mover and shaker, and political bennies gained by the billions they pour into politicians’ campaign coffers.

    Maybe those so vehemently defending any and all unions as the untouchable “little guys” speaking truth to power ought to question WHY the public no longer shares that simplistic view of unions. Because they used to do so. Is it because the public is now venal and selfish and “deceived”? Good luck with beating the public over the head in that accusatory way. Or could it perhaps be because unions have become a facet of “The Man” in their own right? It’s laughable that one can have the prestige, money, perks, and power that union leaders enjoy – visiting and consulting regularly with the whitehouse, spending more billions to sway elections than the banks and oil companies combined, etc, and in the next breath try to pass yourself off as poor besieged underdog.

    The public is neither stupid nor buying it. Some honesty is in order if unions, esp govt worker unions, wish to survive. If they do not, a good portion of the blame for that will lie at their own feet. The public reaction, agree with it or not, will be entirely predictable.

  219. CBS: US Embassy in Tripoli has been shut down. All personnel and family evacuated. <– the last thing they do before things get out of hand, its about to go to shit.

  220. moononpluto
    February 25th, 2011 at 11:15 am
    looking at what I’m seeing about Iraq on AJ, it looks like its about to go up in shit too.
    _____________________

    I am not surprised. During the first week of the protests in Egypt I took a taxi home from the grocery store. The first thing the cab driver did was to ask me what I thought of Egypt. I told him that I was always for freedom and that I hoped one day they would be truly free. He revealed to me that he was from Iraq and had come to Canada shortly after the the shock and awe delivered courtesy of George Bush Jr. His family are still in Iraq. I asked him if Iraq was headed towards democracy. His reply was that yes, they want democracy – but on their terms. I asked him if the country would fall apart once the US left. This man told me that every family in Iraq suffered during the Iraq war and that no real change will be made by the people until the US leaves. He said they are not interested in a US solution – they want their own.

  221. A MATTER OF PRINCIPLE
    Alexander Hamilton’s Economics
    Created Our Constitution

    by Nancy Spannaus

    Alexander Hamilton’s genius in economics was evident from almost immediately after he came to America’s shores in 1772. By 1774, he was already writing anti-British tracts which contained the germ of the concept of national physical economy, in which he asserted that the development of the nation was dependent upon the promotion of agriculture and manufactures together. As he developed his ideas later, especially in his three famous government Reports—two on Public Credit, and one on Manufactures—Hamilton asserted clearly that the chief driver for economic development was the inventiveness, or power of the human mind, which expressed itself through the increase in the use of “artificial labor” (i.e., machinery), and was enhanced by the development of infrastructure. This concept he summarized as the “productive powers of labor.”

    This intellectual foundation, which stands in the sharpest contrast to the bestial “free-trade” ideas of Adam Smith, was strongly informed by the political-economic ideas of the great German scientist Gottfried Leibniz, especially as they were expressed in the works of one of Leibniz’s sponsors, French Finance Minister Jean-Baptiste Colbert, and the Swiss promoter of Leibniz, Emerich Vattel.

    Hamilton, and his collaborators, most emphatically including Benjamin Franklin and George Washington, faced an enormous struggle to establish the institutions which would permit the realization of their vision of human progress. Faced with British determination to suppress any such development, they knew they had to fight not only for independence politically, but to establish institutions that would support such independence and economic growth. The result was the U.S. Constitution, which embodies the principle of the credit system, as well as its necessary complements—the National Bank and the manufacturing policy which, although defeated in the short term, eventually took off under the presidencies of John Quincy Adams, Abraham Lincoln, William McKinley, and Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

    Today, ignoramuses and Tories rave against an activist government, and can’t tell the difference between debt incurred by speculation, and credit issued for long-term capital development. They claim our Constitution calls for giving free reign to the markets, and that the “government that governs least governs best.” Their ideas, like those of the political forces in the United States who opposed Hamilton and his collaborators in the 1780s and ’90s, serve none other than the British Empire, although today that empire functions as a financial system, not a colonial system policed by a massive army and navy. Thus, we have reached the point where patriots have no choice but to master the principle of Alexander Hamilton, now!

    Today it is the principle which Hamilton embedded in the Constitution, and carried out in his own economic measures, which we must bring to bear, at a moment of fearful crisis. Our adversaries are essentially the same as his were, but much more desperate. And they have played on the ignorance, and desperation, of many of our people, in order to get them to demand the very destruction of sovereign government, and its essential economic measures, which will destroy them, and the nation.

    Like Hamilton, we must realize that the road out of crisis requires action to restore the productive powers of labor, and that the powers to embark on that road exist within the U.S. Constitution. Our government has the sovereign power to free itself of a money system, and use credit, based upon its own commitment to develop the industrial and agricultural capabilities of the country. That credit, which may represent the immediate incurring of a debt, must be used to create an explosion of capital formation, especially in large infrastructure projects, starting with the North American Water and Power Alliance (NAWAPA).

    Hamilton’s bankruptcy reorganization, of course, had some fundamental differences with what we require today. While he was dealing with overwhelming debt from the war, we are dealing with trillions in speculation—which can and must be ruled invalid altogether. But like him, we are compelled to look beyond the question of “money” per se, and judge the financial conduct of the Federal government from the standpoint of the physical economy. Where “money” considerations conflict with the General Welfare, they must take a back seat—with full knowledge that the extension of credit for productive investment will ultimately put the nation’s fiscal, as well as physical, house in order.

    It is in light of that principle, that we face the urgent necessity of re-instating FDR’s Glass-Steagall legislation, which separated the speculators from the commercial bankers who tied their pursuit of profits to improving the welfare of their communities. Hamilton may not have had such a law, but the Constitution itself, in Article 1, Section 8, mandates that Congress regulate the creation and value of currency—and that in line with the General Welfare—which should rule out imposing casino debts on our nation. Note also that Hamilton spent his every day as Treasury Secretary fighting the speculators—including Aaron Burr, their representative at the Bank of Manhattan, a bank founded on fraud, and expanding on it. Hamilton paid for that opposition with his life.

    In principle, we must also apply the example of Hamilton’s National Bank. This is particularly apt in the case of the extreme indebtedness that we, as a nation, have incurred with nations such as China and Japan, all of which is verging on explosion, under the current hyperinflationary policy of Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke, the Bank of England, et al. That legitimate debt can be turned into credit, which will enhance the productivity of nations, and, under a renewed fixed-exchange-rate regime, create a stable environment in which technological progress can take off once again.

    It’s time to put the monetarists, of [both] the Tea Party and the Liberals, in their place. The current treasonous alliance between British puppet Barack Obama and the radical Adam Smith Republicans, is a de facto assault on the very existence of the nation. When they invoke “Constitutional principle,” in support of dismantling the Federal government, they are actually spitting on the principles of that founding document.

    It is the concept of the General Welfare which Hamilton, Franklin, and their allies espoused, and put in the Constitution, that must rule our economic policy, and that means using government power to enhance the productive powers of labor. Now is the time for all patriots to rally to that cause.

    Read the full article here:
    http://www.larouchepub.com/other/2010/3748hamilton_constitution.html

  222. Then how did Hillary convince the Chinese and Indians to invest in green energy, by telling them to subsidize it? [….]

    A lot of nonsense in this article…

    ================

    A lot of good sense in this comment! 😉

  223. Then there is the further question, “Is this wealth concentration a problem?” and “If so, what to do about it?”

    Tarpley (and Hillary, and I) also have answers to these latter questions

    ======================

    what are h’s answers?

  224. George Soros — whom we’re always told is not serving his own economic interests at all by

    ===================

    snake oily snark — scroll on past.

  225. moononpluto,

    The only thing reported here is the BO idiots sent the wrong sized ship to rescue Americans. What shameful incompetence.

    This is going to affect the US no matter how much BO pretends the bloodbath is not happening. Gas in my area has gone up more than thirty cents a gallon in just the past few weeks. I read it’s up near $5 in parts of California. Just wait until BO-lovers everywhere find out they can
    ‘t afford to fill their gas tanks. Will that be what wakes them up to his disastrous policies or are they beyond reaching?

  226. I stand corrected. it was the UK Mail which reported on the boat size.

    Hundreds of Americans trapped aboard a rescue ship that was too small to sail in rough weather have finally left Libya this morning.

    The 167 stranded U.S. citizens have been holed up on the Maria Dolores since Wednesday, as rough weather has prevented the ship from leaving.

    The Dolores left Tripoli at 6:37 am EST and is expected to reach its destination port of Valetta, Malta at around 3:00 pm EST.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1360120/Libya-unrest-Hundreds-US-citizens-STILL-stranded-Obama-pressure-act-grows.html#ixzz1EznXxgIZ

  227. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/25/science/earth/25noaa.html?_r=1&hp

    Scientists Are Cleared of Misuse of Data

    An inquiry by a federal watchdog agency found no evidence that scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration manipulated climate data to buttress the evidence in support of global warming, officials said on Thursday.

    The inquiry, by the Commerce Department’s inspector general, focused on e-mail messages between climate scientists that were stolen and circulated on the Internet in late 2009 (NOAA is part of the Commerce Department). Some of the e-mails involved scientists from NOAA.

    =================

    Reminds me of Whitewater and other anti-Bill Clinton investigations. Keep investigating them, and maybe you can find a blow job?

  228. Obama, O-bah-ma, O Messiah of mine not, what can I say that befits what we are seeing? He sends his campaign dickheads to Columbia to be panelists on a seminar on how to use the internet to overthrow Mubarak inter alia in 2011, then he delivers the Cairo speech which is a dog whistle to radicals and a sharp stick in the eye to radicals, he refuses to call Muslim terrorists Muslim terrorists as they infiltrate our country, he refuses to protect the border because of his 2012 campaign strategy, a multi state revolution sweeps through the Middle East and he has no plan to deal with it, in the absence of a plan he first calls for Mubarak to step down, then everyone tells him to shut the fuck up, then he criticzes Hillary for advocating an orderly transition until he reverts to that tack himself, then he is roundly criticized throughout the Middle East by those who are in the street, he still takes a hands off approach to Iran (what is the matter with these people don’t they realize that they are dealing with a Nobel Prize winner–like Carter??) and then he gives a press conference where, by mutual agreement, Tapper and his ilk agree to not ask the difficult questions–questions which might illuminate his incompetence, and give the American People a fair sense of what is going on? The pertinent question is this: Are we really dealing with a Messiah as Big Media constantly assures us from the beginning up to and including now? Or are we perhaps, just perhaps dealing with a different specie altogether–a flake, in which case everything Tapper and his ilk have been feeding us is nothing more than a big lie so their corporate handlers can use this flake to enhance their profits at the expense of the American People? Before you answer that question, take a moment to consider what Dunn wrote about Mr. Obama in American Thinker over two years ago. Dunn, predicted Obama would loose because the American Public would not elect a flake but under the seductive influence of a massive Wall Street financed marketing campaign they succumbed. And now we are living with the consequences of having a flake in office–our credibility as the leader of the world has become a standing joke, and what we are left with is chaos–a chaos our flake in chief never anticipated or made provision for. Change . . .
    —————————————————————————————————–

    Barack Obama is a flake, and the American people have begun to see it. The chief characteristic of a flake is that he makes choices that are impossible to either understand or explain. These are not the errors of the poor dope who can’t grasp the essentials of a situation, or the neurotic who ruins things out of compulsion, or the man suffering chronic bad luck.

    The flake has a genius for discovering solutions at perfect right angles to the ordinary world. It’s as if he’s the product of a totally different evolutionary chain, in a universe where the laws are slightly but distinctly at variance to ours. When given a choice between left and right, the flake goes up — if not through the 8th dimension. And although there’s plenty of rationalization, there’s never a logical reason for any of it. After awhile, people stop asking.

    http://www.americanthinker.com/2008/08/the_odd_choices_in_barack_obam.html

  229. rgue with that, not at all, and have great gratitude for all they’ve done in past struggles. But most of those great strides re: hours worked, child labor, employer abuses, etc are now enshrined in LAW, and have little or nothing to do with current collective bargaining. So pardon me if the the fear-mongering that says limiting unions in any way is going to return us to 1924, with half-starved underage miners being driven with force into grossly unsafe mines to slave away for 18 hours until they cough their lungs out and die at 35, rings a little reactionary and hysterical. Ya think?

    Institutions change over time, and the purposes they served once are not always the purposes they serve now. Because it is my nature, looking at history, to be wary of accumulations of power (whatever the source) I have become somewhat wary of unions, despite my support of their intended function in theory. I become even more wary when I see one vast accumulation of power becoming inextricably linked to another accumulation of power. That is true for the govt/corporate nexus, and the govt/union nexus as well. Accumulation of power breeds abuse and overreach. I’ve never seen it happen otherwise, in all of history.

    That’s not to say that I want unions gone. I DON’T. But a rational conversation needs to be had about the changing dynamic in a modern society, and adjustments made to those realities. The unions need to adapt.

    ===================

    Mm. When and where and how is this conversation supposed to happen? Walker has made his bill a time pressure situation. Many such conversations may be happening at all levels (including between a parent and her child’s teacher in the parent’s kitchen) — but when and how are we going to hear about them? They’d be complicated, nuanced. Not the thing of soundbytes.

    Walker’s bill has bad things in it and ramming it through WITHOUT ‘conversation’ is bad.

    To your point about govt/labor. We’ve got govt/alltoomuchcapital. For the moment, govt/labor may be the only balancing factor.

  230. Obama will be out in 2012. The American People will see to that. 2008 was hopey changey surrealism. By 2012, they will have seen the elephant. What they should want is THE HEADS OF THE PEOPLE WHO HAD SO LITTLE REGARD FOR THIS COUNTRY THAT THEY PUT HIM IN THERE. Big media, Imelt, Soros, Goldman Sacks and Dimon, inter alia. Bring us their heads on a platter. But before we do that, haul them before Congress to give a full accounting of their crimes–like FDR did to JP Morgan. And then prosecute them under RICO as a criminal enterprise. That is my cheerful thought for the day. Two years hence, it may not sound quite as fantastic as it does now.

  231. Wbboei,

    Agreed. And I hope your prediction that BO will start becoming a distasteful distant memory starting in 2012 is true.

  232. Well it seems to me that Hillary managed to get all the Americans out of Libya..WITHOUT HOSTAGES…..and I wonder if she’ll get the credit for it….you know she was the one doing it!

    I think Kdaffy…is a marked man….he might as well begin digging his grave….the Americans are gone….and no one is going to let him keep murdering the folks….how do you spell sniper??

  233. HEALTH-SCARE BILL NOT LOVED

    weeklystandard.com/blogs/obamacare-isnt-even-popular-among-grossly-over-sampled-democrats_552492.html

    Obamacare Isn’t Even Popular When Over-Sampling Democrats
    ======================

    The newly released Kaiser Health Tracking Poll shows that, by a margin of 27 percentage points (59 to 32 percent), seniors have an “unfavorable,” rather than a “favorable,” opinion of Obamacare. The same poll also shows that, by a margin of 5 points (48 to 43 percent), Americans as a whole have an “unfavorable,” rather than a “favorable,” opinion of the overhaul. That’s not so striking in itself, but it is when you consider this fact: Only 24 percent of the poll’s respondents were Republicans.

    About half of the poll’s remaining respondents, 36 percent of the overall tally, were Democrats. This 3-to-2 ratio of Democrats to Republicans isn’t even remotely representative of current party allegiance. Exit polling from the past election showed an even split: 35 percent Republicans, 35 percent Democrats. When you factor in “leaners,” the Kaiser poll included 37 percent Republicans and 50 percent Democrats.

    It’s a good sign for repeal that a poll this heavily skewed toward Democratic respondents still shows Obamacare to be unpopular, and not just by a nose. Moreover, the poll shows that the intensity of Republican opposition is far greater than the intensity of Democratic support: 58 percent of Republicans have a “very unfavorable” opinion of Obamacare, while only 30 percent of Democrats have a “very favorable” opinion of it.

  234. Confloyd, no still trapped in there, managed to get a message from him, they are all hunkered down hiding, they wont go out or near windows.

    Hopefully in the next few days but who knows, the turks have to get over 25,000 out, thats a lot to move.

  235. moon,

    Hillary is headed your way…

    Secretary of State Clinton to make delayed visit to Turkey in mid-March

    25 February 2011

    US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is reportedly scheduled to make a visit to Turkey in the second week of March amid a wave of protests sweeping Middle Eastern countries, most of which are American allies.

    Clinton was supposed to pay a visit to Turkey in early February after her participation in the 47th Munich Security Conference on Feb. 4-6. But she had to postpone her visit due to the increasingly unfolding unrest in Egypt that came after the toppling of Tunisia’s president following a popular uprising.

    In Munich, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu and Clinton had talks with their delegations in a 45-minute meeting on the sidelines of the security conference to discuss turmoil in Egypt and its possible repercussions. Both foreign ministers also reportedly discussed joint cooperation between the US and Turkey in the fight against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and bilateral relations between the two countries.

    Both the US and Turkish authorities have been in constant contact, seeking ways to deal with unrest in the region that is shaking autocratic leaders.

    http://www.todayszaman.com/news-236734-secretary-of-state-clinton-to-make-delayed-visit-to-turkey-in-mid-march.html

  236. Republicans are policy wonks- I’ll give them that… but there’s something about them that is inborn, you cannot Trust them.
    _________________________________

    Gingrich Threatens Impeachment

    In an exclusive interview with Newsmax.TV Friday, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich said President Barack Obama’s decision not to fully enforce the Defense of Marriage law has sparked a constitutional crisis as he has directly violated his constitutional duties by arbitrarily suspending a law.

    Gingrich for the first time raised the specter of Obama’s removal from office, noting that, if a “President Sarah Palin” had taken a similar action, there would have been immediate calls for her impeachment.

    Obama Attorney General Eric Holder said on Wednesday that the administration will not defend the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act in the courts, which has banned recognition of same-sex marriage for 15 years. President Clinton signed the act into law in 1996.

    Obama’s decision to forego a legal defense of the law has caused a firestorm of anger from conservative groups.

    Gingrich slammed Obama for his decision, telling Newsmax that he is not a “one-person Supreme Court” and his decision sets a “very dangerous precedent” that must not be allowed to stand.

    Imagine that Governor Palin had become president. Imagine that she had announced that Roe versus Wade in her view was unconstitutional and therefore the United States government would no longer protect anyone’s right to have an abortion because she personally had decided it should be changed. The news media would have gone crazy. The New York Times would have demanded her impeachment.

    “First of all, he campaigned in favor of [the law]. He is breaking his word to the American people,” Gingrich says.

    “Second, he swore an oath on the Bible to become president that he would uphold the Constitution and enforce the laws of the United States. He is not a one-person Supreme Court. The idea that we now have the rule of Obama instead of the rule of law should frighten everybody.

    “The fact that the left likes the policy is allowing them to ignore the fact that this is a very unconstitutional act,” Gingrich said.

    Gingrich said it is absolutely critical for Obama to comply with Congress and the constitutional process.

    “I believe the House Republicans next week should pass a resolution instructing the president to enforce the law and to obey his own constitutional oath, and they should say if he fails to do so that they will zero out [defund] the office of attorney general and take other steps as necessary until the president agrees to do his job.

    “His job is to enforce the rule of law and for us to start replacing the rule of law with the rule of Obama is a very dangerous precedent.

    “Clearly it is a dereliction of duty and a violation of his constitutional oath and is something that cannot be allowed to stand.”

    Gingrich adds: “I don’t think these guys set out to create a constitutional crisis. I think they set out to pay off their allies in the gay community and to do something that they thought was clever. I think they didn’t understand the implication that having a president personally suspend a law is clearly unconstitutional.”

    http://www.newsmax.com/Headline/Gingrich-Obama-Constitutional-Crisis/2011/02/25/id/387455

  237. jeswezey
    February 25th, 2011 at 3:39 am

    February 24, 2011
    Time for U.S. to scale back its role in world affairs?
    ____________

    Maybe- if we ever have a leader too engaged.

  238. #
    turndownobama
    February 25th, 2011 at 1:42 pm

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/25/science/earth/25noaa.html?_r=1&hp

    Scientists Are Cleared of Misuse of Data

    An inquiry by a federal watchdog agency found no evidence that scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration manipulated climate data to buttress the evidence in support of global warming, officials said on Thursday.

    The inquiry, by the Commerce Department’s inspector general, focused on e-mail messages between climate scientists that were stolen and circulated on the Internet in late 2009 (NOAA is part of the Commerce Department). Some of the e-mails involved scientists from NOAA.

    =================

    Reminds me of Whitewater and other anti-Bill Clinton investigations. Keep investigating them, and maybe you can find a blow job?
    __________________

    Bad analogy-

    Scroll down to the bottom of that link and you find this, OOps!:

    “But Mr. Inhofe said the report was far from a clean bill of health for the agency and that contrary to its executive summary, showed that the scientists “engaged in data manipulation.”

    “It also appears that one senior NOAA employee possibly thwarted the release of important federal scientific information for the public to assess and analyze,” he said, referring to an employee’s failure to provide material related to work for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a different body that compiles research, in response to a Freedom of Information request.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/25/science/earth/25noaa.html?_r=2&hp

  239. turndownobama
    February 25th, 2011 at 1:42 pm

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/25/science/earth/25noaa.html?_r=1&hp

    Scientists Are Cleared of Misuse of Data

    An inquiry by a federal watchdog agency found no evidence that scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration manipulated climate data to buttress the evidence in support of global warming, officials said on Thursday.

    The inquiry, by the Commerce Department’s inspector general, focused on e-mail messages between climate scientists that were stolen and circulated on the Internet in late 2009 (NOAA is part of the Commerce Department). Some of the e-mails involved scientists from NOAA.

    =================

    Reminds me of Whitewater and other anti-Bill Clinton investigations. Keep investigating them, and maybe you can find a blow job?
    __________________

    Bad analogy-

    Scroll down to the bottom of that link and you find this, OOps!:

    “But Mr. Inhofe said the report was far from a clean bill of health for the agency and that contrary to its executive summary, showed that the scientists “engaged in data manipulation.”

    “It also appears that one senior NOAA employee possibly thwarted the release of important federal scientific information for the public to assess and analyze,” he said, referring to an employee’s failure to provide material related to work for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a different body that compiles research, in response to a Freedom of Information request.”

  240. Lol of the day.

    Libyan State TV running what looks like a Qaddafi fashion show set to bad music.

    Michelle’s probably watching to get tips.

  241. Moon,
    Sorry to hear he is still trapped…I hope this is over soon. Those poor people over there with this lunatic in charge of the country….wait a minute…I could really say that about the good ole US of A too! LOL!

  242. Susan Rice Skips UN Meeting on Libya, Goes to Sustainability Conference Instead

    Omri Ceren 02.25.2011

    Susan Rice was instrumental in pushing the Obama administration to join the UN Human Rights Council, insisting that engagement would allow the U.S. to “shape” the council’s policies and membership. That proved to be a somewhat inflated assessment when Libya was soon afterward — and quite easily — elected to the notorious Israel-bashing body. Rice subsequently declined to criticize the ascension of the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, instead complimenting the election.

    So it’s entirely appropriate that the ambassador was unable to attend the emergency UN Security Council meeting on the violence sweeping Libya, on account of a global-sustainability conference in South Africa that had greater purchase on her attention:

    At great personal risk to himself and his family, Libya’s deputy ambassador to the United Nations, Ibrahim Dabbashi, pushed the UN Security Council to take up the violence in his home country. … The dramatic event prompted the first UN meeting of the 15 member Security Council on the uprisings sweeping across the region since the beginning of Tunisia’s revolution. … The United States was represented by Foreign Service officer and Ambassador Rosemary DiCarlo. … Rice, skipped the Libya meeting and instead flew to South Africa to attend a UN panel discussion on global sustainability.

    It’s probably unfair to lay out the timeline this way, implying as it does that Rice’s absence was a Libya-specific thing. She misses lots of events that clash with her internationalist sensibilities and multilateral promises. The ambassador quite literally wasn’t in the room when Iran — a state that uses serial rape as a weapon against imprisoned dissidents — was elected to the Commission on the Status of Women committee. Presumably, someone didn’t like the optics of that debacle, coming as it did a few months after Rice insisted that the UN mission was spearheading Obama’s “change in the nature and tone of our relationships … [which] is yielding concrete and tangible benefits here at the United Nations.”

    No one doubts that Ambassador Rice has a busy schedule. With the GOP looking to curtail UN funding, and with the UN’s own $43 million in-house PR shop not making much headway, she has recently taken to touring the country to give lectures on how “Main Street America Needs the United Nations.” But with the White House under fire for “voting present” on Libya — see Rick Richman’s brutal analysis of Obama’s speech — is it really a good idea to alter the narrative to “not even showing up to vote present”?

    Despite all her responsibilities, the ambassador found time last week to work tirelessly in crafting an anti-Israel statement that would bridge the differences between the Arab Group and the United States. Although — again, in fairness — there might not have been any conferences sketching the promise of transnational cooperation for her to attend. We all know what rare beasts those are, the international community being famously circumspect in its self-regard.

    http://www.commentarymagazine.com/2011/02/25/susan-rice-skips-un-meeting-on-libya-goes-to-sustainability-conference-instead/

  243. Desperate Gadhafi increases government workers’ pay — same tactic as used in Illinois

    By: David Freddoso 02/25/11

    Libyan dictator Muammar Gadhafi, facing a forcible ouster and possibly death, is trying to mollify important constituents by increasing government employee pay by 150 percent.

    Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, D, used a similar tactic to avoid what had seemed like a certain election defeat last year. He gave out 14 percent pay raises despite his state’s near bankruptcy and inability to pay many of its bills.

    Okay, yes, I can hear you already — the comparison is unfair. After all, Quinn won his election, and Libya probably does not have strong enough public-sector unions to save Gadhafi.

    http://washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/2011/02/desperate-gadhafi-increases-government-workers-pay-same-tactic-us#

  244. Except the people in Illinois are not facing a lying madman who will just change his mind if they backed down and slaughter them all. They are not fools to believe anything coming out of that snakes mouth.

  245. Moon – good that you got a message from your friend. I hope they all stay safe.

    —–
    I heard on tv last night that protesters were able to organize by creating a faux dating site to spread the word without Daffy finding out.

    The internet generation are pretty darn resourceful and kudos to all of them for getting around these shackles.

    I’m with confloyd, daffy needs to be sent to his 72 virgins, sooner rather than later.

  246. I received this in an email. It had pics which were funny but it is still funny without.
    **************
    For those that don’t know about history … Here is a condensed version.

    Humans originally existed as members of small bands of nomadic hunters/gatherers.

    They lived on deer

    in the mountains

    during the summer and would go to the coast

    and live on fish and lobster in the winter.

    The two most important events in all of history were the invention of beer

    and the invention of the wheel.

    The wheel was invented to get man to the beer.

    These were the foundation of modern civilization and together were the catalyst for the splitting of humanity into two distinct subgroups:

    1 . Liberals

    2. Conservatives.

    Once beer

    was discovered, it required grain and that was the beginning of agriculture.

    Neither the glass bottle

    nor aluminum can

    were invented yet, so while our early humans were sitting

    around waiting for them to be invented, they just stayed close to the brewery.

    That’s how villages were formed.

    Some men spent their days tracking and killing animals to BBQ at night

    while they were drinking beer. This was the beginning of what is known as the Conservative movement…

    Other men

    who were weaker and less skilled at hunting learned to live off the conservatives by showing up for the nightly BBQ’s

    and doing the sewing,

    fetching, and hair dressing.

    This was the beginning of the Liberal movement.

    Some of these liberal men eventually evolved into women. They became known as girlie-men.

    Some note worthy liberal achievements include the domestication of cats,

    the invention of group therapy, group hugs,

    and the concept of Democratic

    voting to decide how to divide the meat

    and beer

    that conservatives

    provided

    Over the years conservatives came to be symbolized by the largest, most powerful land animal on earth, the elephant.

    Liberals are symbolized by the jackass

    for obvious reasons.

    Modern liberals like imported beer (with lime added), but most prefer white wine

    or imported bottled water. They eat raw fish

    but like their beef well done. Sushi, tofu, and French food are standard liberal fare.. Another interesting evolutionary side note: most of their women have higher testosterone levels than their men.

    Most social workers,

    personal injury attorneys, journalists, dreamers

    in Hollywood and group therapists are liberals. Liberals invented the designated hitter

    rule because it wasn’t fair to make the pitcher also bat.
    Conservatives drink domestic beer,

    mostly Bud or Miller. They eat red meat

    and still provide for their women. Conservatives are big game hunters,

    rodeo cowboys,

    lumberjacks,

    construction workers,

    firemen, medical doctors, police officers,

    engineers, corporate executives, athletes, members of the military, airline pilots and generally anyone who works productively.

    Conservatives who own companies hire other conservatives who want to work for a living.

    Liberals produce little or nothing. They like to govern the producers and decide what to do with the production. Liberals believe Europeans are more enlightened than Americans. That is why most of the liberals remained in Europe when conservatives were coming to America ..

    They crept in after the Wild West was tamed and created a business of trying to get more for nothing.

    Here ends today’s lesson in world history:

    It should be noted that a Liberal may have a momentary urge to
    angrily respond to the above before forwarding it.

    A Conservative will simply laugh and be so convinced of the absolute truth of this history that it will be forwarded immediately to other true believers and to more liberals just to piss them off.

    And there you have it. Let your next action reveal your true self…..I’m going to have another beer.

    “Don’t Steal – The Government Hates Competition”

  247. Please respect FT.com’s ts&cs and copyright policy which allow you to: share links; copy content for personal use; & redistribute limited extracts. Email ftsales.support@ft.com to buy additional rights or use this link to reference the article – http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/df613ba2-40e1-11e0-9a37-00144feabdc0.html#ixzz1F18Tvmcw

    Britain has been buying off Libyan officials with hefty additional fees in order to expedite the troubled evacuation of UK nationals, according to senior government figures.

    The revelations over the demands for what one senior figure described as “bribes” underlines the problems faced by the government as it oversees a rescue effort that has been criticized as inadequate, poorly co-ordinated and slow.

  248. Britain has been buying off Libyan officials with hefty additional fees in order to expedite the troubled evacuation of UK nationals, according to senior government figures.

    The revelations over the demands for what one senior figure described as “bribes” underlines the problems faced by the government as it oversees a rescue effort that has been criticized as inadequate, poorly co-ordinated and slow.

  249. Ha, no wonder he resigned so quick. Rep Chris Lee and the Tranny Prostitutes.

    http://gawker.com/#!5769037/the-craigslist-congressman-and-the-crossdressing-prostitute

    In the past two weeks, two D.C.-area transgender women contacted us, each with a separate story about exchanging emails with the ex-congressman. One sent us an ad that Lee allegedly posted on Craigslist in search of trans women; the other sent us a never-before-seen photo that she says Lee sent her after they started chatting by email. Taken together, they present a possible explanation to those who have wondered why such a tame “sex scandal” forced Lee’s hand so quickly.

    Read on.

  250. Shadowfax,
    Surely a Dictator would qualify for more than just the average 72 virgins….peasants get that! I wonder if he maybe get 100 times more since he was the head Duck for 40 years….surely that would get a few more virgins…..???

    Have we figured out yet where all these virgins are coming from….there aren’t many left! LOL!

  251. JanH
    February 25th, 2011 at 6:29 pm

    Showering Rice with publicity getting the public acquainted with her-

    Next, will be a bio of Power. In January 2008, Power began dating law professor, Cass Sunstein, whom she met while working on the Obama campaign. They married in July 08′. Theres NO doubt the WH is in the process of assembling their “new” Foreign Policy” team with John Kerry in the lead as Hillary’s replacement.

  252. Have we figured out yet where all these virgins are coming from….there aren’t many left! LOL!
    _____________

    Probably why in the business of human trafficking in the ME, they are always interested in girls 12 to 16 yrs old.

  253. We needed a bigger boat
    ********

    ‘Gunships shooting at protesters’ according to U.S. witnesses

    U.S. citizens land in Malta and Turkey, tell of suffering in Libya
    American citizens fleeing the bloody rebellion in Libya today spoke of the traumatic scenes they had witnessed before they left the country.
    As a ferry carrying hundreds of Americans trapped in Tripoli landed in Malta and a plane filled with evacuees landed in Turkey, evacuees brought stories of carnage from the streets of Tripoli.
    They spoke of children shot with high velocity weapons, helicopters attacking protesters and random shootings of innocent civilians.

    Carried: Members of the Malta Red Cross carry an injured woman down the steps as they disembark from U.S. chartered ferry Maria Dolores in Valletta’s Grand Harbour

    Glad to be safe: The Maria Dolores, which docked in Malta today, had a number of children on board. many were just glad to reach safety
    Passengers aboard the Maria Dolores, a small catamaran chartered to evacuate 167 Americans and other nationalities from Tripoli, spoke of the immense suffering for the Libyans left behind.
    Speaking to CNN, one unidentified American citizen on the Dolores said: ‘I saw carnage.
    ‘Helicopter gunships were shooting at them [protesters].
    ‘The army were using heavy machine guns and automatic rifles against little children throwing rocks.’
    The Maria Dolores left Tripoli at 6:37 am EST and docked this evening in Valetta, Malta bringing to safety 167 stranded U.S. citizens.
    The State Department is still not sure how many of the thousands of Americans living in Libya are still waiting to get out.
    As the Maria Dolores left Tripoli a U.S.-chartered air plane carrying 41 passengers, including 32 Americans, also left Libya today for Istanbul.
    According to David Peterson, a U.S. citizen on board the flight, the violence in Libya, ‘got bad pretty fast’.
    ‘We heard regular gunfire, especially at night,’ he said.
    But while some passengers described horror on the streets, other evacuees were just grateful to be safe.
    Judith Drotar, a teacher at the American school in Tripoli aboard the Dolores, said how strained the last few days had been.
    She said: ‘We are very tired and have been in the same clothes for the last five days.
    ‘I came aboard with 22 teachers…it was very uncomfortable but that was minor compared to what we were experiencing emotionally.
    Speaking about her former workplace, Mrs Drotar said she was sad to leave her ‘little masterpiece’ behind.
    She added:’We had to leave a lot of wonderful Libyan people behind – that’s real sad.’

    Dry land: A rough crossing could not dampen the spirits of passengers as they left the Maria Dolores today

    Tired: Passengers just disembarked from a ferry carrying Americans and other foreigners are welcomed by a US embassy employee
    Another unidentified British woman who was a tourist in Libya and also aboard the Dolores, said: ‘The scariest part was hearing gunshots in our hotel.
    ‘The crossing was quite rough but there was plenty of food on board. At least we were warm and dry unlike those at the airport.’
    Lucile Usielmerazcerna, another evacuee from Santa Cruz, California said: ‘It was pretty uncomfortable just because of the delay.
    ‘It was really rough waters coming over here, also having to stay in the dock for 2 or 3 days.
    ‘Right now I’m just feeling kind of good that we are here,’ she added.
    Minutes after the ship docked in Malta’s Valletta harbour, a few people on wheelchairs were escorted out.
    Women holding babies then walked down a ramp, while others held the hands of children as they stepped off the ship after 8-hour voyage across the choppy Mediterranean Sea.
    ‘Oh, it was a long ordeal. We are glad it’s over,’ said evacuee Sara Ali, a 30-year-old with dual Libyan-American citizenship who lives in Libya.

    Joy: Passengers just disembarked from a ferry carrying Americans and other foreigners waved inside a coach at the harbour terminal in Valletta
    ‘We’re just really tired and really happy to be out and safe,’ she added.
    Malta’s Valletta Harbor was full of EU warships from France, Germany, Britain and Malta.
    Tens of thousands of foreigners are trying to flee the chaos in Libya, with Turks and Chinese climbing aboard ships by the thousands, Europeans mostly boarding evacuation flights and North Africans racing to border crossings in overcrowded vans.
    The British Government sent three chartered planes to Tripoli, with the first returning in the early hours of Thursday morning.
    China has evacuated more than 450 by plane and bus – nearly half of whom were employees of Sinohydro.
    India’s External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna said Friday that the government would send two flights a day starting Saturday to evacuate some of the 18,000 Indians in Libya. India is also sending ships.

    Home ward bound: The Maria Dolores has finally made it to Malta

    Escape: These Chinese workers were some of the lucky ones to escape Libya for Crete yesterday

    …meanwhile others had to make their own way across Libya’s dangerous land border with Tunisia
    While U.S. citizens are finally getting out of Libya, many have rounded on the Obama administration for delays in the evacuation.
    Speaking about the three day delay in the Dolores leaving Tripoli, Tony Munoz, Editor of shipping magazine The Maritime Executive, said: ‘I don’t understand why this vessel didn’t leave earlier – The Maria Dolores is a new vessel built for Mediterranean seas.
    ‘I can only imagine the captain was refusing to sail because he felt the vessel was not capable enough of taking the sea on.
    Speaking to MailOnline, Mr Munoz said that there was no comparison between the 68 metre Dolores and the 204 metre Hellenic Spirit, used by the Greek government to evacuate its citizens from Benghazi.
    ‘The U.S. needed to charter a bigger boat like the Greeks’ he said.
    ‘The fully hulled Spirit will be more durable outside a port, this much bigger vessel could take the rough seas on.
    ‘There is no question about it, they [U.S.] should have been out of there long ago – why haven’t they chartered a bigger boat like the Greeks or Turkish.
    ‘At the very least, the government should have had a larger back up vessel on the way.’
    Earlier in the week, State Department official P.J. Crowley said Libyan authorities had refused the U.S. permission to land any chartered aircraft.
    ‘We had requested permission to bring charter aircraft into Tripoli.
    ‘That permission was not granted yesterday [Tuesday].
    ‘We still would like to have permission to bring charters in for any additional Americans who want to leave.’

    More…
    Gaddafi ‘personally gave the order for Lockerbie bombing’ and I have PROOF, claims dictator’s former justice minister
    DOMINIC SANDBROOK: A new age of uncertainty. Why Arab turmoil could mean an orgy of bloodletting and rocketing oil prices rather than a Utopian world order
    U.S. oil hits $100 a barrel as Libyan crisis deepens
    ‘I am extremely sorry’: Cameron apologises for delays in rescuing stranded Britons as passengers speak of ‘hell’ in Libya
    It is understood that the Maria Dolores was only allowed to dock in Libya on Wednesday after the State Department contacted the Gaddafi regime to ask permission.

    Violence: Libyan leader Moamer Gaddafi addresses a crowd as his power slips in Tripoli

    Safe: A Romanian mother and child shake the hand of their rescuer and fellow countryman
    Enlarge
    Some have suggested the slow evacuation was behind President Obama’s lacklustre performance in condemning Colonel Gaddafi’s, regime where thousands are thought to have been killed following protests.
    Passengers from other nationalities arriving in Rome and Malta described scenes of chaos and violence at Tripoli’s airport, with people pushing and shoving to get onto the few flights taking off Wednesday and Libyan police and security agents kicking and beating them.

    Out: British citizens Mick and Jacqueline Davids and their children made it aboard HMS Cumberland, which picked up evacuees from Libya
    ‘One of my fellow passengers was actually beaten up quite heavily and kicked on,’ said Steffan Arnersten, a 42-year-old Swede who works as a managing director at a technical consulting company. ‘He’s quite wounded.’
    Sharon, a Maltese arriving home aboard the only one of three scheduled Air Malta flights to make it out Wednesday, said the situation at the airport was desperate.
    ‘It was just terrible. People fighting for their lives, scrambling over people, pushing, shoving, kicking, everything. It was a mess.’
    Libya is one of the world’s biggest oil producers — responsible for nearly 2 per cent of the world’s oil — and many oil companies were evacuating their expatriate workers and families.
    There are an unknown number trapped in isolated desert camps.
    British Defence Secretary Liam Fox said yesterday that a number of Nato alliance countries are drawing up plans to rescue the trapped contractors.
    Mr Fox said an ‘international co-ordinated effort’ would be mounted to retrieve workers who are isolated and under threat from armed gangs.
    ‘We may be taking out citizens of other countries, other countries may be taking out UK citizens. The better we have it coordinated and de-conflicted, the better the chances of success,’ he said.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1360120/Libya-unrest-Hundreds-US-citizens-STILL-stranded-Obama-pressure-act-grows.html#ixzz1F1HsxHs8

  254. I think I like Power’s husband, Sunstein better than I like her.

    List of books he’s authored and published.

    “In his research on risk regulation, Professor Sunstein is known for developing, together with Timur Kuran, the concept of availability cascades, wherein popular discussion of an idea is self-feeding and causes individuals to overweight its importance.

    Professor Sunstein’s books include After the Rights Revolution (1990), The Partial Constitution (1993), Democracy and the Problem of Free Speech (1993), Legal Reasoning and Political Conflict (1996), Free Markets and Social Justice (1997), One Case at a Time (1999), Risk and Reason (2002), Why Societies Need Dissent (2003), Laws of Fear: Beyond the Precautionary Principle (2005), Radicals in Robes: Why Extreme Right-Wing Courts Are Wrong for America (2005), Are Judges Political? An Empirical Analysis of the Federal Judiciary (2005), Infotopia: How Many Minds Produce Knowledge (2006), and, co-authored with Richard Thaler, Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth, and Happiness (2008).

  255. #
    gonzotx
    February 25th, 2011 at 7:15 pm

    Mrs. Smith
    February 25th, 2011 at 7:10 pm

    I don’t think it was positive pub for Rice
    _________________

    To me, the article about Rice was written in an attempt at familiarizing people with her identity and humanizing her.

  256. Mrs. Smith,
    Your right….this human trafficing is the lowest of the low….No telling where these girls end up with these sex depraved maniacs over there… I don’t think its the peasants that are screwed up…it’s the rich one that can afford all their pleasures.

  257. A White House spokesman said it is clear that Gadhafi’s legitimacy has been “reduced to zero” — the Obama administration’s sharpest words yet

    ***********

    oooohhhh. Reduced to Zero…such strong girly-man words!

  258. confloyd
    February 25th, 2011 at 8:01 pm

    One of Liam Neesan’s new movies deals with the human trafficking of young girls. The name of the movie is “Taken”. His 16 yr old daughter
    talks him into letting her go to Paris with another student on break and they both end up kidnapped by spotters as soon as they arrive in Paris. They turn them over to Serbians running a human trafficking ring.. His daughter ends up drugged at a private close-circuit tv auction selling for $250k to an Arab King. I won’t spoil the ending for you, if you want to see the movie on HBO Demand.

  259. Reduced to Zero…

    ………..he said as he raised his hand to form a letter ‘L’ with his thumb and index finger……..placing them over his forehead.

  260. Shadowfax,
    Did Obama say that and do that with his fingers??? Wow, that could be some kind of subliminal message, huh??

  261. Mrs. Smith,
    Yeah, I seen the movie,its good….its what wealth can buy….I’m sure even American’s have done this too….wealth is toxic to some people!

  262. Yeah, I seen the movie,its good….its what wealth can buy….I’m sure even American’s have done this too….wealth is toxic to some people!
    ________________

    Brought to you by our friends, the New World Order!

  263. Why have a press conference on Libya at all?

    By Jennifer Rubin

    Unfortunately, it was not a Saturday Night Live routine. Wednesday afternoon, after being roundly criticized for saying so little and doing nothing on the slaughter in Libya, the president announced — hold on to your hats! — that he has asked his staff “to prepare the full range of options.” And if that doesn’t have the Butcher of Tripoli quaking in his boots, President Obama is going to get Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to call “a session of the Human Rights Council.” I kid you not.

    As Bill Kristol asks, where’s the “fierce urgency of now” that Obama spoke about during his campaign? Bill observes: “So Qaddafi flies in mercenaries to kill people. And Obama flies diplomats around to consult with other diplomats about whether at some point we might possibly stop Qaddafi from flying in mercenaries to kill people.”

    We’ve run out of adjectives — pathetic, inert, confused, etc. — to describe the hapless Libya policy. Moreover, Obama’s words are so imprecise that one would hardly know who is perpetrating the violence. He told us: “Yesterday a unanimous U.N. Security Council sent a clear message that it condemns the violence in Libya, supports accountability for the perpetrators and stands with the Libyan people.” Who are the perpetrators? Do tell, Mr. President.

    It’s hard to fathom why he resorts to language as obtuse as this:

    Like all governments, the Libyan government has a responsibility to refrain from violence, to allow humanitarian assistance to reach those in need and to respect the rights of its people. It must be held accountable for its failure to meet those responsibilities, and face the cost of continued violations of human rights.

    I think we can all agree the “Libyan government” — that would be Moammar Gaddafi — has shirked that responsibility entirely. In fact, you might say — unless you were the overwhelmed president — that Gaddafi by slaughtering hundreds of his own people has committed crimes against humanity. (To quote Gov. Chris Christie, “Whoa … I said it, and I didn’t vaporize into the carpet.”)

    If there is some purpose to Obama’s abject showing of weakness, I can’t figure it out. But history won’t much care about the reason for his paralysis, only about the tragedy that unfolded while he remained idle.

    http://voices.washingtonpost.com/right-turn/2011/02/why_have_a_press_conference_on.html

  264. JanH
    February 25th, 2011 at 9:39 pm
    ______________________

    Obama has too many Masters. He agreed to serve the United States, the Soros/Brzezinski Shadow Government and his ideological counterparts, the Rouge Dictators of the World.

    How long can he keep up the facade of allegiance to the United States of America, when he is more afraid of offending the other two entities who would cut his heart out in a second if they thought he was throwing them under the bus?

  265. Like all governments, the Libyan government has a responsibility to refrain from violence, to allow humanitarian assistance to reach those in need and to respect the rights of its people. It must be held accountable for its failure to meet those responsibilities, and face the cost of continued violations of human rights.
    ———————————-
    I have got to hand it to that feller Obama–barcrack banana as we call him down here in the swamps. He may not do shit, but he sure can preach up a storm:

    (OBAMA) YOU MOMAR HAVE A MORAL RESPONSIBILITY, AN ETHICAL OBLIGATION AND A NON DELEGABLE DUTY TO REFRAIN FROM ACTS OF WANTON VIOLENCE, TO RESPECT THE HUMAN RIGHTS OF YOUR PEOPLE, AS MY CZAR CASS SUNSTEIN WILL EXPLAIN AND TO LET MY FRIENDS IN THE MEDIA TURN YOUR PRIVATE BLOODBATH INTO A THREE RING CIRCUS.

    AND JUST TO SHOW YOU HOW SERIOUS I AM, IF YOU DEFY ME, IF YOU IGNORE MY WARNING, IF YOU FAIL TO CEASE AND DESIST IN YOUR ACTS OF GENOCIDE, THEN I WILL DEAL WITH YOU TO THE FULL EXTENT OF MY POWERS. SIMPLY PUT, I WILL GO ON VACATION, AND I WILL REFUSE TO ACCEPT YOUR CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTIONS–BELAY MY LAST.

    IF YOU THING I AM KIDDING MOMAR, JUST TRY ME. I WILL TELL YOU ON THE QT, I HAVE ALREADY PUT A DEPOSIT DOWN ON THAT HAWAIIAN MANSION, SO EVEN AS YOU SPEAK I AM PURSUING MY CONTINGENCY PLANS . . .

  266. obama is like other leaders who have waited until it is almost to late to get involved. The only difference here is that some of those leaders actually knew how to lead.

    Obama doesn’t have a clue what to do from one day to the next and in the meantime so many people lose their lives. I don’t know how he lives with himself.

  267. I don’t know how he lives with himself.
    ________________________

    Easy, sociopaths have no conscience. They feel no remorse, lack empathy and will do almost anything to be the center of ATTENTION-

  268. confloyd

    Shadowfax,
    Did Obama say that and do that with his fingers???
    ——
    I wouldn’t put it past him, since he really enjoys scratching with that middle finger near his eye and nose. 😉

  269. Britain has been buying off Libyan officials with hefty additional fees in order to expedite the troubled evacuation of UK nationals, according to senior government figures.
    The revelations over the demands for what one senior figure described as “bribes”

    ================

    Better call it ‘ransoms’?

  270. 100 Law Professors Ask Congress to Impose Ethics Code on Supreme Court
    Separate but equal, with some being slightly more equal. Clearly Law Professors are gearing up for the inevitable Supreme Court Ruling on Obamacare. They are laying the ground work to claim that any decision the Supreme Court makes is invalid. (assuming it doesn’t go their way….ACE
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

    February 25, 2011
    100 lawprofs ask Congress to impose an ethics code on the Supreme Court.
    Oddly, the name Koch appears 10 times in this Washington Post article. It appears that some lawprof brains are aboil with worries about the nefarious Koch brothers. Kochophobia rages on, and these furious minds seem to imagine themselves overcoming the evil that is Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas — as if their “ethics” plan — assuming it could be put in place — couldn’t possibly backfire and oust their favorite liberal/swing justice.
    The professors said in their letter to the committees that their goal is not to second-guess the activities of any individual judge but to create “mandatory and enforceable rules to protect the integrity of the Supreme Court.” An influential British judge declared in the 17th century that “no man may be a judge in his own case,” the letter said, but “inexplicably we still allow Supreme Court justices to be the sole judge of themselves on recusal issues.”
    And what man will be the judge of whether these law professors are truthfully reporting their motives?
    Under the ethics code that the lawyers consider their model, approved and regularly updated by the nation’s chief appellate judges under the chairmanship of the chief justice, lesser judges are prohibited from accepting travel reimbursements from outside groups if they “give the appearance of influencing the judge” or “otherwise give the appearance of impropriety.”

    Nan Aron, director of the liberal group Alliance for Justice, said that if these rules were extended to the Supreme Court, none of the justices could attend “overtly political meetings or events” like those sponsored by the Kochs.
    And who will be the judge of which meetings and events are overtly political? If they’re sponsored by the Kochs, they’re political. So far, we know that. Thanks a lot. I love the irony. It’s obvious that this proposal is overtly political!
    At present, said Ellen Yaroshefsky, director of the Jacob Burns Ethics Center at the Benjamin Cardozo School of Law, “we have standard-less standards” at the court that she struggles to explain to students.

    She said it would be straightforward for the court to appoint an independent body of retired justices or other experts to adjudicate recusal and ethics controversies.
    Oh, wonderful! An independent body of retired justices or other experts. Yes, wouldn’t it be great to have an independent body of retired justices or other experts decide which Supreme Court Justices got to participate in particular cases?

    So… retired Justices Souter, Stevens, and O’Connor might step up to decide who to disqualify in — let’s say — the case about the constitutionality of the individual mandate. Maybe you think that skews a tad liberal, a tad too anti-Scalia-and-Thomas. Well, first, that’s not a bug, it’s a feature. And, second, whoever is setting up the “independent body” could always balance it with those “other experts.” You know where to get them, don’t you? Elite law schools! Begin with the names of those 100 professors who signed that letter to Congress.

    It’s all so delightfully inbred — isn’t it? — in the feverish fantasy life of the Scalia- and Thomas-haters of legal academia.

  271. turndown,
    All those bj’s are bad for your teeth….!

    Sure glad I’m too old to have to worry about getting knocked up….LOL!

  272. 100 lawprofs ask Congress to impose an ethics code on the Supreme Court.
    ——————————
    Worthless bastards. First, Congress lacks the power to impose an ethical standard on a co-equal branch of government. Second, Congress power is limited to establishing courts and seeing they are funded. Third, these left wing screeds are playing right into the hands of Congressional conservatives, who want to abolish the Ninth Circuit, because it is too liberal and does not conform to their ethical standards. Fourth, they have impugned the integrity of the court, and thereby violated the cannons of ethics. Fifth, in doing so they have sent a terrible message to their students. Sixth 100 out of 10,000 really is not that many.

  273. Senate also has the power to confirm (or reject) candidates for judicial office. Normally, this is a pro forma exercise, but when the existing balance on the court would change if the nominee is confirmed then it gets into a partisan fight. But once a judge is confirmed through this process the role of Congress ends. Thereafter, if the Judge gets out of line like Hastings, he is answerable to the judicial branch, not congress. Granted there were those half hearted attempts by bubblehead (Gerald Fore–d) to impeach Douglas but that was much ado about nothing. When Justice Fortas engaged in activities that Larry Craig would have approved of he was dealt with through the judicial branch.

  274. Those who we call traitors, or embarrassments to our country are, in fact, anti-human. Anybody who is pushing for the sort of things Obama, or the financial interests who control him are pushing for–bailing out financial houses instead of protecting the population, a healthcare system organized around making a monetary profit instead of pursuing the frontiers of knowledge, shutting down the nation’s manned space program, attacks on the development of fusion energy… People like this are behaving as if they were a species distinct from the rest of us humans. What does this mean…

    If you really look at evolution once humans appear on the scene, it is no longer characterized by morphological changes, growing feathers or fingers or such; what we did was make breakthroughs in our understanding of the universe we live in. Those breakthroughs have an effect on our species equivalent to evolutionary changes. Humanity evolves ideas. What was once but a rock becomes recognized as ore. Humans are not beasts (but the anti-humans work hard to have us think so.)

    Those creatures who but have the outward appearance of being human, but promote and defend the views that ore is but a rock, that society should be maintained at the feudal level–denying the evolutionary quality of a republic–those creatures who cling to being predatory and parasitic, and who defend that view, are anti-human. Our Constitution–the one many of these creatures swore to defend–is pro human.

    There is the discovery of fire and the promotion and spread of its constructive benefit, as in improving the productive powers of labor and thus improving the general welfare or quality of life for our species…

    and there is the suppression of such activity.

  275. “I can only think of one word to describe what the House has done with HR1 — outrageous,” declared Mayor Michael Nutter of Philadelphia. “Outrageous and unacceptable. HR1 is un-American. It attacks senior citizens. It attacks children. It attacks working people. It stops jobs and economic development in cities all across the United States of America. I have no idea what is going on in the minds of some who have now gotten elected on rhetoric and are trying to govern with that same rhetoric. You cannot run a country while attacking its own people.”

    “The U.S. Conference of Mayors will not stand for this kind of activity,” Nutter emphasized. “We will not stand for this kind of attack on our own citizens, as HR1 does.”

    Nutter is one of a bipartisan group of mayors furious at the budget cuts passed by the House last weekend, who held a press conference yesterday in Washington. The mayors are especially incensed about the cuts to the Community Development Block Grant program, which are contained in the House budget passed last week, but also in President Obama’s budget proposal.

    Mayor Mick Cornett of Oklahoma City, the President of the Republican Mayors Association, called the GOP budget cuts “hypocritical,” saying, “It is hypocritical to say you value the economy and cities and jobs and then go make drastic cuts to great programs like Community Development Block Grants, which we know have great discretionary opportunities to go exactly where they’re needed in our communities. We understand tough choices. There isn’t a single mayor up here that isn’t making tough choices right now. We’re out there weighing the value of police officers and firefighters and libraries. But it’s also about priorities. And the priorities in Washington need to be about cities and jobs and the economy. And if these proposals go through, those are not the priorities.”

    The mayors could lead a march on the Capitol in mid-March, if they don’t get what they are seeking, said Conference President Elisabeth Kautz, of Burnsville, Minn. “We are going to have a major march and meeting in [the] halls of Congress,” added Bill Gluba, of Davenport, Iowa, who stated that the Mayor’s Conference has decided to take the lead in organizing local and civic organizations to come to Washington to protest the cuts.

  276. First Obama jumped feet-first into the WI union fray. Some number of days later someone thought better of it and he said he was staying on the sidelines. And yet …

    …Members of the UW Teaching Assistants Association sent out a tweet shortly after 3 p.m. asking people to help clear out the hearing room they’ve been operating in for the last 11 days. The group will move operations to Democratic Party of Wisconsin offices off the Capitol for the remainder of the protests.
    Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/02/26/wis-capitol-close-sunday-afternoon/#ixzz1F4pvx9KZ

  277. After Geneva President Hillary will do a special as only she can present.

    ecretary Clinton Celebrates the 100th Anniversary of International Women’s Day with Events the Week of March 7-11

    The Department of State and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton are celebrating the 100th Anniversary of International Women’s Day on March 8 with a series of events that week.

    On Monday, March 7, Secretary Clinton will deliver remarks at the launch of the 100 Women Initiative: Empowering Women and Girls through International Exchanges, spearheaded by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, at the Department of State.

    On Tuesday, March 8, Secretary Clinton will host the 2011 International Women of Courage Awards Ceremony with special guest First Lady Michelle Obama, at the Department of State. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues Melanne Verveer and other U.S. and foreign dignitaries will also participate.

    On Wednesday, March 9, Secretary Clinton will deliver remarks at the launch of a new maternal and child health initiative between USAID, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Governments of Norway, Grand Challenges Canada and the World Bank at the Ronald Reagan Building. USAID Administrator Raj Shah, Melinda Gates, and other representatives from the partner organizations will also participate.

    On Friday, March 11, Secretary Clinton will deliver remarks to the 2011 Women of the World Summit, at the Hudson Theatre in New York City.

  278. ABM90
    February 26th, 2011 at 8:00 am

    ——————–
    Thanks. I believe this event is a little more important than a “motown” concert so, as Mrs. Smith suggests, the twits can dance the night away.

  279. Online call for protests in China prompts crackdown

    By David Pierson
    Los Angeles Times
    February 26, 2011

    Reporting from Beijing — An anonymous online campaign calling for pro-democracy demonstrations across China on Sunday has been met with the detention of human rights activists, greater Internet censorship and even veiled pressure on foreign journalists.

    The strict response by authorities comes after a U.S.-based Chinese-language website, Boxun.com, called for repeated attempts each Sunday to launch a “jasmine revolution” in about two dozen cities, including Beijing and Shanghai.

    The first planned attempt, which was held last Sunday, brought out a swarm of police and foreign media in some of the designated sites but provided no evidence the country was on the cusp of a popular uprising.

    Still, with regimes toppling in North Africa and the Middle East, authorities in China deemed the threat strong enough to have interrogated, arrested and detained at home dozens of people suspected of fomenting the anti-government movement.

    Human rights groups based outside China said Friday that police had charged five activists this week with “subversion of state power” and “inciting subversion of state power,” serious crimes that carry potentially decade-long prison sentences.

    The five were Ran Yunfei, 46, a widely followed blogger and public intellectual; Ding Mao, 45, a student leader during the 1989 Tiananmen democracy protests who spent 10 years in jail; Hua Chunhui, 47, an insurance company manager who has advocated on civil society issues; Liang Haiyi, no age given, a woman accused of posting foreign links about the jasmine revolution on a popular Chinese instant-messaging service; and Chen Wei, 42, a leading human rights activist in central Sichaun province.
    The arrests coincide with the disappearance this month of three human rights lawyers, Jiang Tianyong, Tang Jitian and Teng Biao.

    “The numbers point to a bad situation that is only getting worse,” Renee Xia, international director of Chinese Human Rights Defenders, an advocacy group, said in a written statement. “In the matter of a few days, we have seen more cases of prominent lawyers subjected to prolonged disappearances, more criminal charges that may carry lengthy prison sentences for activists, more home raids, and a heavier reliance on extralegal measures.”

    Supporters of the jasmine revolution have been communicating on Twitter, a site only accessible in China with circumvention software since it was blocked by Web censors in 2009. Many cautioned those who planned to attend demonstrations Sunday to be wary of police.

    Authorities appear to have gone to extraordinary lengths to prevent a repeat of the Feb. 20 gathering outside a McDonalds in a busy Beijing shopping district. Metal corrugated fencing was erected outside the restaurant midweek, blocking the protest site. The same tactic was employed outside the home of Liu Xia, who is married to Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo.

    On Friday, several members of Beijing’s foreign media corps were telephoned by police and told they needed to apply with neighborhood councils to receive permission to conduct interviews. The same level of sensitivity is being levied on the Internet, where even the Beijing neighborhood in which the protest is supposed to take place — Wangfujing — is banned from being searched on China’s most popular micro-blogging site, Sina Weibo.

    That puts the popular tourist destination on a list of banned search terms that has expanded to include “Egypt,” “jasmine” and American ambassador Jon Huntsman, who sparked a controversy by briefly being seen at last Sunday’s gathering.

    The social-networking site LinkedIn was also blocked by censors from late Thursday to Friday evening. It had reportedly carried messages about the protests.

    http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fgw-china-crackdown-20110227,0,4764714.story?track=rss

  280. If the economy does not turn around drastically soon, or gets worse, the Dems will be faced with a primary problem. O will not take himself out of the Race, but the Dem leadership can. They have to decide if they want to win. I am hoping for a Rep 2012 candidate to come forward to set things on fire. That will be the last straw. A still weak economy or weaker economy, and a shinning star Rep candidate. Results, the Dems will lose, and anything everything they have set in motion will be reversed.

    Go for it, Dems, and make my day! Then I will know the IQ of the Dem party is much lower than I thought.

  281. Thereafter, if the Judge gets out of line like Hastings, he is answerable to the judicial branch, not congress..
    *******
    The “feed-back loop”, Congress v. Judiciary is the impeachment process. Alcee was impeached by the House and convicted in the Senate (by committee, rather odd that) and after judicial appeals, was removed from the bench.

  282. Thanks, ohanson-

    NewMexico- I didn’t check the link, which I usually do after I post.

    Slept in this morning till 8:30am.. posting with one eye open..

  283. No probelm Mrs. S. If I was wise enough I would have fixed it myself like ohanson did. Appreciate your efforts. I need to go back and make sure my link works also.

  284. Any doubts about the sanity of what we are dealing with in the ME will be removed after you read this. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei who is the leader Muslims must look to for direction, who happens to be running the show in the ME, has issued a Jihad against… Rachael Ray, Paula Deen, Jamie Oliver and many others…

    THE Iranian government has declared a virtual “jihad” on Rachael Ray!

    In a half-baked new edict, ayatollahs in the hard-line Muslim country have banned Rachael
    and all other cooking shows that promote non-Iranian cuisine, The ENQUIRER has learned.

    The order was reportedly handed down by the country’s supreme religious leader, 71-year-old Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who apparently thinks Rachael’s lasagna recipe is a threat to Islamic culture. Kitchen magicians Paula Deen, Jamie Oliver and other American and European chefs also cannot appear on the nation’s state run TV.

    “From now on, teaching how to cook non-Iranian dishes is banned,” said Ali Darabi, the deputy head of Iranian TV.

    Darabi announced the ban during a visit to one of Iran’s 30 state-run TV channels.

    Cooking shows on state-run TV will now be limited to the preparation of Persian food only.

    The order is part of an effort by religious conservatives in Iran to erase all Western influences. Iran is currently in a heated dispute with the U.S. over its plans to produce nuclear
    weapons.

    Syndicated media critic and Huffington Post contributor Bill Mann told The ENQUIRER that the bizarre new rule shows “Americans have won the hearts and stomachs of the Iranian
    people with our cheeseburgers, corn dogs and nacho platters!”

    Iranian cuisine utilizes small amounts of red meat and emphasizes ingredients such as rice, fruits and vegetables. Classic Iranian dishes include kebabs, stuffed vine leaves, split pea and lamb stew and rice pudding.

    read more here:

    http://www.nationalenquirer.com/ayatollah_jihad_rachael_ray_paula_dean/celebrity/70230

  285. #
    NewMexicoFan
    February 26th, 2011 at 11:01 am

    No probelm Mrs. S. If I was wise enough I would have fixed it myself like ohanson did. Appreciate your efforts. I need to go back and make sure my link works also.
    _____________________

    Just for a point of info.. when you get an error message like the one that came up, most times it means the page has been moved to another html… (after I posted both links, making my way to a cup of tea, I thought to myself- now why did I do that when the main link had the graphic in it in the first place.) 🙂

  286. Have to say, this looks quite good. We can all support this.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/02/26/us-egypt-idUSTRE70O3UW20110226?WT.tsrc=Social%20Media&WT.z_smid=twtr-reuters_%20com&WT.z_smid_dest=Twitter

    Future presidents of Egypt will only be allowed to stay in office for eight years according to constitutional amendments that will open up competition for the position held for three decades by ousted leader Hosni Mubarak.

    Under the proposed amendments, the elections would be subject to judicial supervision, said retired judge Tariq al-Bishri, the head of the committee. He outlined terms for candidacy which are loser than current requirements.

    Candidates for the presidency will need the support of 30 parliamentarians, stripping away the former requirement for the backing of 250 members of a range of elected assemblies, including 65 MPs.

    Failing that, candidates could also run if they secure the support of 30,000 eligible voters across 15 governorates.

    Alternatively, they could run as representatives of registered political parties which have at least one member elected to either the upper or lower house of parliament.

    The proposed amendments will also make it complicated for a president to maintain the state of emergency — in place for decades — which opposition activists want lifted as part of their broad demands for reform.

  287. The “feed-back loop”, Congress v. Judiciary is the impeachment process. Alcee was impeached by the House and convicted in the Senate (by committee, rather odd that) and after judicial appeals, was removed from the bench.
    ——————————
    Thanks SHV. I did not know that. Or perhaps I had forgotten. It helps me understand why conservatives in Congress made the impeachment of William O. Douglas from my state such a cause celbre when I was in law school. I appreciate the correction. A point of clarification on that issue: Do you know whether the impeachment hearing was held in the Senate where Hastings was initially confirmed, or in the House where impeachment proceedings are generally initiated.)

    Would you be good enough to address the merits of my argument. Forget the fact that these law professors are liberal and the judges they have in their cross hairs are conservative, how do you feel generally about what these eggheads are urging, namely that Congress impose–and enforce a set of ethics on the Courts? It seems to me that it is a corruption of the judicial branch, and something the authors of the Federalist Papers would have condemned, even though they believed, as do I that Congress should be the most powerful branch of government. You do not need to get into it that deep. Just give me your gut reaction. Do you think Congress has that power, and if so ought they to exercise it?

    Before you answer, consider the following: if Congressional authority over the judiciary does not end with the Confirmation Process, by showing that Congress was involved in the subsequent impeachment of Hastings does it not destroy the whole premise of a co-equal branch to impose a set of ethics, since the power to impeach implies a concomitant power to enforce those ethical standards?

  288. #
    JanH
    February 26th, 2011 at 11:48 am

    Mrs. Smith
    February 26th, 2011 at 11:10 am

    ———————
    This has got to be a joke.
    ________________________

    Not a joke- but scary when you think about it, these are the same people that are going to fight us to control you and me!

  289. Then there is the further question, “Is this wealth concentration a problem?” and “If so, what to do about it?”

    ============

    Confession as data point. I don’t want to look that close at the subject either. Too depressing and too confusing.

    Personally, I’ll wait for something from Hillary or Bill about it. But to get the attention of non-Clintonistas, you might consider leading with short simple examples like these:

    How many of the acres of farmland are owned by what percentages of the people? How many of the houses? How many acres of business buildings? Land is something tangible that we can relate to, and it’s of limited supply. The government can’t print more acres.

    Another point that turns me off the subject is, what do you mean by ‘owned’? Does this count a shareholder owning stock in a corporation? In a mutual fund? If Caroline Kennedy ‘owns’ some small percent of each of a hundred mutual funds, that doesn’t necessarily give her much control of any of them, much less of the corporations in which the fund owns stock.

    Another: Is this real money the 1% ‘owns’? Or is it some kind of funny ‘derivitives’ or ‘futures’ or something?

    Using myself as a guinea pig — that’s the sort of thing I’d need clarified in a short post before I’d even consider clicking on the links you recently gave.

    Good luck. 😉

  290. Paula Deen, Jamie Oliver and other American and European chefs also cannot appear on the nation’s state run TV.

    ===================

    So refusing to run a syndicated show on your channel — is a ‘jihad’?

  291. Secretary Clinton Celebrates the 100th Anniversary of International Women’s Day with Events the Week of March 7-11

    The Department of State and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton are celebrating the 100th Anniversary of International Women’s Day on March 8 with a series of events that week.

    ==========

    …as Secretary of State Clinton was leaving the stage, she paused and went back to the microphone. Looking straight into the camera she said she had one more event to cover…………that after long consideration, and for the good of the country, the Democratic Party and to fix health care, she has decided to run again for President in the upcoming election and, “…kick Obama’s ass, long and hard…out of the Oval office!” 😆

  292. Kdaffy thinks women are loyal and uses them for bodyguards….LOL! It’s amazing he lasted 40 years…..ask Hillary how many women stabbed her in the back for a MAN in 08′! Women are known for their loyalty….in the ME anyway, LOL!

  293. Jan–these pundits are the delusional–and John King is a scumbag–whether we like him or not. This 2016 stuff is slow news day tripe. It discounts all the critical factors at work here including Hillary’s age, the seismic changes in the electorate, racism and corruption in the party, schisms in our economic base, disaffection by so many former Hillary supporters that she would defend a boob who is destroying the country and damned near everything else. It falls under the same category as the parlor conversation about what if Napoleon had won Waterloo. It aint gonna happen. To give you an idea on how far out these pundits are, notice that one of them says that if Obama does not succeed in moving to the middle then he will lose in 2012. in which case Hillary can run in 2016. That is a non sequitur since Obama cannot run for a third term. Frankly, if Obama loses in 2012, then it is more likely that he will run in 2016 than Hillary because the Democratic Party is now controlled by blacks and left wing extremists and corrupt businessmen. That is reality and it is why Obama will always be their candidate. Obama and no one else–until he is precluded by term limitations and Sunstein is looking for a way around that.

  294. Since these pundits will not take no for an answer, my sense is that Hillary has decided to play the game with them, and be coy about it. That drives them up the wall, and scumbags like King offer the inevitable when she says no do you believe her and the pseudo sophisticate pundit responds no and thereby validates himself to the rest of the phonies. Throw the asshole kibbles and bits he done good–Pavlov. No thought, no analysis just salivate on camera.

  295. Cole Porter was ahead of his time. He never knew John King, the late Keith Olberman, Ed Schultz, Chrissie Matthews, Ratboy Todd, Skarrboroh, the late David Shuster, Brian Williams, the little Greek, Chipmunk Couric, Rachel Madcow disease, Obama loving O’Reilly and the rest of the clowns who pretend to be journalists and deceive the American People for a living. They don’t need Pulitzers. They need to look in the mirror and sing along with the following:

  296. It seems Hillary’s 3AM ad was spot on and Obama knew it all along. Which is probably why he begged Clinton to take the job of SOS. But even she works for Obama and must take her cues from him, and he is stuck with a mind that can’t or won’t do the work of clarifying anything that scares him.

    The U.S.’s squishiness regarding Libya this week is sickening. If we can’t draw the line with a murderer who has hired mercenaries to machine gun civilians (in a region where we are more than capable of stopping it) then we have no moral standing left. Thanks Barack. Mission Accomplished.

    from John w Smart
    http://johnwsmart.wordpress.com/2011/02/25/squishy-barry-at-3am/#more-2706

    In the midst of all this, he spends his time coaching his daughter’s classmates in Basket Ball when his daughter is not even there and she is skiing in Colorado
    as if that is the primary duty of POTUS. Really really sickening

  297. wbboei
    February 26th, 2011 at 2:36 pm

    ———————

    Exactly. The media is scared to death of Hillary Clinton. They are so insecure about their messiah that they will never stop asking the question…will she or won’t she.

    Furthermore, I am positive that John King didn’t get the response he was hoping for.

  298. I wonder how obama talks to other leaders when he phones them. He hasn’t a clue how to deal with international issues. He is crippled by his laziness and lack of aptitude when it comes to dire events. He listens to the idiots instead of the brains. And depends on plagiarism, toto, and Cliff’s notes.

    3 a.m. phone calls?

    No way.

  299. confloyd
    February 26th, 2011 at 1:38 pm

    Shadowfax,
    Are you daydreaming again or what???
    ————–
    Yup, I get too depressed with everything that is making our lives MORE miserable, Barry ruining everything, then the Rethugs tearing the rest down.

    I have to dream or I get too depressed with it all.

  300. Shadowfax,
    I understand…I’ve quit watching TV…almost quit reading the blogs…most of the time I just come here to see what you all are talking about…and put in my 2 cents ever now and then.
    Politics and world affairs are just to chaotic and watching Obama diddle is more than this old lady can take!

  301. Clinton says Libyans have spoken, Gaddafi must go

    WASHINGTON | Sat Feb 26, 2011

    Feb 26 (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Saturday the people of Libya had spoken and leader Muammar Gaddafi must go.

    “We have always said that the (Gaddafi) government’s future is a matter for the Libyan people to decide, and they have made themselves clear,” Clinton said in a statement, echoing a harder stance against the Libyan leader by U.S. President Barack Obama.

    “(Muammar Gaddafi) has lost the confidence of his people and he should go without further bloodshed and violence.”

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/02/26/libya-usa-clinton-idUSN2618146420110226

    ——————–

    echoing? Really? More like he took her advice in the first place.

  302. Here we go again with the ‘Bambi can’t catch a break’ theme.It’s from Fox.
    The turmoil across the Middle East along with other foreign crises and budget battles across the country are threatening to overshadow President Obama’s concerted efforts to show the nation that he is focused on reviving the economy as he ramps up his 2012 re-election campaign. Since his State of the Union address last month, Obama has traveled away from Washington at least once a week, mostly stopping in political battleground states that will be crucial to his re-election bid, including Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. He has a trip to Florida planned for next week. But this week underscored the difficulties the president is having in drawing national attention to and building support for his economic message against the backdrop of escalating violence in Libya, massive protests in Wisconsin, Indiana and Ohio over union rights and political gridlock on Capitol Hill.
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/02/26/foreign-crises-state-budget-battles-overshadow-obamas-economic-message/

    Of course if he had remained focused on jobs any of the previous times he claimed he was turning his focus to jobs, the focus would already be there, and there might have been noticeable progress. And just to add a little more, it seems to me that things are still getting worse. On a 10 mile stretch I drive fairly regularly, there are, and have been for awhile, a handful of billboards with the word AVAILABLE and a phone number written across them. How depressing is that? And this morning, I went to a big box store for bird seed. Has been $13.97 for over a year. Today it was $16.97. And has smaller and fewer black oil seeds in the mix. Inside, there was lots of gardening stuff to be stocked, it was stacked and blocking aisles everywhere. Parking lot and store were noticeably empty for a Saturday mid-morning fairly decent weather-wise day. Many of you remember the Kingston Trio – they’re rioting in Africa….

  303. Hubby and I were in downtown Austin today, and there were some pro-Planned Parenthood marchers. Sounds fine, right?

    What is not so great is that two people marching up and down were carrying signs that said “Little Miracle, my ass!” Brilliant. That’s all we pro-choice people need, is for sneering asshats to be running around in support of us, carrying what amounts to “I hate babies” signs. *bangs head*

    The left is FUCKING STUPID. They completely lose their shit when they get any opposition in public opinion, which makes the public turn against them even more. They somehow think that “in your face” tantrums are the way to win over the electorate.

  304. Please respond!

    Can someone with more of a grasp on finances than me answer this question?

    How is it that the states have to balance their budgets – including in Wisconsin where, apprently, that’s what Walker is trying to do – when the federal government has no such restrictions and can therefore keep mandating states pay for programs they don’t necessarily adhere to.

    So, even if a state DOES balance its budget, it will continue to incur ever higher costs from ever expanding programs imposed by the federal government.

    Is it my naivete or is this an impossible situation? No matter how well-balanced a state’s budget is it can continue to raise taxes or cut services or cut employees in response to higher costs demanded by the feds.

    In the meantime, my taxes keep going up, my services keep going down and everything grinds slowly to a halt. Is that what’s happening? Is the federal government basically a huge monopoly which everyone from individuals to villages to cities to counties to states has no control over? So WTF is the point? BO can keep demanding states pay for everything from carbon credits to health care to restitution to outreach to Muslims via our formerly vaunted space program and we can’t do a friggin’ thing about it?

    How is this that much different from ME dictatorships?

  305. One of my darker theories:

    BO can’t afford to have AA’s and Latinos demonstrate en masse for fear of alienting the (still) majority white population so he and his goons incite this union brou-ha-ha seeking to rally whites and have them on TV acting nasty, flinging vile epitaphs, behaving with maniacal barbaric incivility.

    If this is the plan, how he and MO must be laughing their butts off over the sight of whitey taking it to the streets.

    Bunch of friggin’ fools.

  306. The left is FUCKING STUPID.

    My sentiments, exactly. See previous post. But you said it so much more succinctly than I did.

    How STOOOOOPID are these people????????

    It’s like their orchestrating their own imminent demise, one way or the other. Only, unfortunately, they intend to drag everyone down with the ship.

  307. JanH
    February 26th, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    Clinton says Libyans have spoken, Gaddafi must go.
    ________________________

    Now that Egypt has a draft Constitution in place which Libya can use as a model for their own country- Hillary can sing it from the rooftops.. Other ME countries will see it can happen, and be given the confidence to fight for their own liberty and freedom with their Constitution in hand just as we did…
    _______________________

    Egypt’s army passes draft constitutional amendments

    26 February 2011

    The army in Egypt has passed a draft of constitutional amendments to be submitted to a national referendum.

    Under the proposed changes, the president would only be allowed to serve two four-year terms, instead of unlimited six-year periods.

    Deposed President Hosni Mubarak was serving his fifth six-year term when he was toppled by a mass uprising earlier this month.

    The amendments would also reinstate judicial oversight of elections.

    The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces that now controls Egypt asked a panel of experts to suggest constitutional amendments that produce democratic reforms.

    It has promised to put them to a national referendum ahead of parliamentary and presidential elections to be held within six months.

    The changes are long-standing demands of the Egyptian opposition, some of whom have also wanted to limit presidential powers.

    But the committee that drafted the changes said it had decided to postpone that issue until after the elections.

    A future president would also be obliged to appoint a deputy, something Mr Mubarak avoided until the last days of his rule.

    Other changes would make it easier for individuals to qualify to run as a presidential candidate.

    Elections would be subject to judicial supervision and it would be harder for any leader to maintain the state of emergency.

    Earlier the Supreme Council apologized after military police surrounded a crowd of protesters overnight, beating them with batons and using tasers to drive them out of Tahrir Square in central Cairo.

    The demonstrators had been calling for a faster pace of reform and the replacement of the interim government of Prime Minister Ahmad Shafiq.

    Even after a cabinet reshuffle on Wednesday, several Mubarak-era ministers remain, including the key portfolios of defense, interior, foreign affairs, and justice.

    Mr Mubarak resigned on 11 February, forced out by 18 days of street protests.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-12589425

  308. BO can’t afford to have AA’s and Latinos demonstrate en masse for fear of alienting the (still) majority white population so he and his goons incite this union brou-ha-ha seeking to rally whites and have them on TV acting nasty

    ================

    He may be inciting the unionists for various reasons, but not much point in inciting them to behave nasty and make enemies, since most unions ARE on his side, or Democrats’ side in general. Walker’s bill (and similar in other states) damages unions per se.

  309. Good News.

    My Friend finally got out with his co-workers.

    In what I can only describe from him as a “living hell on earth”, they were finally evacuated this evening, they had to leave everything behind and go with the shirts on their back. I cannot describe the way they were taken out because they dont want the regime knowing how they are getting foreigners out by stealth.

    I told him things are replaceable, you cannot, screw the things you left behind.

    Apparently things are degenrating fast.

  310. “Other changes would make it easier for individuals to qualify to run as a presidential candidate.”
    __________________

    Obama can and might decide calling Cairo home… he might legitimately qualify under Egypt’s new constitutional amendments and consider a new career as a Rent-A-President.

    Obama is one of the few rouges choosing to dress in Armani rather than camouflage or brightly colored Mu-Moos. He is able to pass as an astute businessman able to hit the ground running, ready to begin reshaping the (fill in country here) to it’s own pitiful demise.

    The talented Mr Obama has a distinct aptitude for reading (scripted) tele-prompters and peddling dreams by the dozens to the (fill in country)’s youth who will on cue, second guess their elders and vote for him at election time. We guarantee you a win.

    Renting or leasing this man as your next presidential nominee will ensure a tight relationship between your existing government and US, (tighter than the much beloved Spanx*) with the added Bonus FREE of charge of a built-in invisible Shadow government handling the day to day operations insuring that “your” country will be the next World’s Super Power now that the United States, as promised, has slipped into 3rd place.

    We stand on our record of accomplishments- always remember our slogan, “Was it a rat I saw?” (our eternally ageless palindrome)

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  311. AmericanGal, I read that article and laughed my ass off. If you’re reduced to twisting yourself into pretzels to claim that the taxpayers are somehow not paying for public pensions, you are badly losing the argument. I wish the writer good luck selling that absurdity.

  312. Hillary for Texas–it struck me as odd also–I only listed it as it says it was based on some article by a Pulitzer Prize winning tax reporter. Didn’t know if this was some new discussion point some are trying to make or if it was a legitimate different point of view.

  313. Protesters across US decry Wis. anti-union efforts

    AP – Opponents to the governor’s bill to eliminate collective bargaining rights for many state workers protest …

    By PATRICK CONDON and TODD RICHMOND, Associated Press Patrick Condon And Todd Richmond, Associated Press – 45 mins ago

    MADISON, Wis. – Rallies were held across the country Saturday to support thousands of protesters holding steady at the Wisconsin Capitol in their fight against Republican-backed legislation aimed at weakening unions.

    Union supporters organized rallies from New York to Los Angeles in a show of solidarity as the protest in Madison entered its 12th straight day and attracted its largest crowd yet: more than 70,000 people. Hundreds banged on drums and screamed into bullhorns inside, while others braved frigid weather and snowfall during a rally that spilled into city streets.

    “I want to thank you for coming out here today to exercise those pesky First Amendment rights,” actor Bradley Whitford, who starred in television’s “The West Wing,” told his hometown crowd. “This governor has to understand Wisconsin is a stubborn constituency. We fish through ice!”

    Republican Gov. Scott Walker has introduced a bill that includes stripping almost all public workers, from librarians to snow plow drivers, of their right to collectively bargain on benefits and work conditions. Walker has said the bill would help close a projected $3.6 billion deficit in the 2011-13 budget. He also argues that freeing local governments from collective bargaining would give them flexibility amid deep budget cuts.

    The bill has sent Democrats and unions into an outrage nationwide. They see it as trampling on workers’ rights and as an attempt to destroy Democrats’ strongest campaign allies.

    “Wisconsin is opening up people’s eyes a little bit,” said Jay Van Loenen, a teacher who attended a rally in Denver that attracted about 1,000 people. “So I think that the move is to try to get people more involved in their unions and create a stronger front so that if something happens here, we are prepared.”

    Several thousand people gathered for a rally in Columbus, Ohio, where lawmakers are considering a similar bill. Indiana Democrats successfully blocked a Republican bill last week that would have prohibited union membership from being a condition of employment.

    Large crowds of teachers, firefighters and public workers also gathered for rallies — holding American flags, wearing pro-union clothing and holding signs — in other capital cities including Topeka, Kan.; Harrisburg, Pa.; and Olympia, Wash.

    In Los Angeles, public sector workers and others held signs that read “We are all Wisconsin.” Some wore foam “cheeseheads,” the familiar hats worn by Green Bay Packers fans.

    Covered in layers of coats, scarves, hats and gloves, about 1,000 rally goers outside the Minnesota Capitol chanted “Workers’ rights are human rights” and waved signs, some reading “United we bargain, divided we beg.”

    “The right to collectively bargain is an American right,” Eliot Seide, a local union leader, told the crowd in St. Paul. “You can’t have American democracy if you don’t have a strong trade union movement.”

    The rallies were part of a campaign by the liberal online group MoveOn.org to hold demonstrations supporting Wisconsin workers in major cities across the country. Some of the demonstrations attracted counter-protests, though the pro-union rallies were larger.

    Madison Police spokesman Joel DeSpain said he didn’t have a firm estimate on the Wisconsin capital’s crowd, but said it was larger than last weekend when nearly 70,000 people descended on the Capitol.

    The crowd cheered as pilot Jeff Skiles, the first officer on the US Airways Flight that landed in New York City’s Hudson River in January 2009, told them that “justice and righteousness will always win out.” Skiles helped pilot Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger land the plane, whose 155 passengers and crew members were safely rescued.

    Protesters jammed the Wisconsin Capitol steps, packed the ice-covered lawn — some sat in trees — and filled surrounding streets. Several thousand counter-protesters came out last Saturday to support Walker, but they were hardly visible this time.

    Capitol police planned to let protesters stay overnight Saturday into Sunday, but plan to finally close the building Sunday afternoon to let crews clean it.

    People held signs that called Walker a parasite and a dictator and demanded voters recall him. Michael Janairo, a 4-year-old of Sheboygan, held a sign that showed Green Bay Packers star linebacker Clay Matthews tackling Walker. Michael’s mother, Lisa Janairo, is not a public worker but drove to Madison to show support.

    “For him to dictate and not negotiate is just wrong and we won’t stand for it,” the 45-year-old said.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110227/ap_on_re_us/us_union_demonstrations

  314. There was some guy on NPR moaning and groaning about his vacation in Gambia 10 years ago! This was some kind of travel experience thingy but I bring it up to show how these liberal, elites are sick out of their minds. Where the hell is their self awareness? He was all about ‘oh poor me’ when he is describing how these poverty stricken people came and ‘harrassed’ him for money. He is asking ‘where is their self respect, pride?!!’ Well, poverty is ugly — there is no time to think about pride and self-respect for many. Then he says how he and his wife took some balloons and pencils (!) to a village and started giving those out to children and then they get mobbed by a whole set of adults and children, and he is shocked by that — again the condescending, ‘oh poor me, I am on vacation’ tone. Yeah, you go to a different culture and poorer societies you encounter things you don’t know. But don’t go around thinking you are doing something big by giving them balloons or demand that they show their pride just so you want to feel comfortable on your vacation and don’t want to see the ugly.

  315. Isn’t Forbes supposed to be conservative? Is Ungar their token liberal or something? Why would they run a piece slanted too pro-union?

    Anyway, Ungar added this update:

    way with some sweet deal that now must be brought to an end.

    UPDATE: Since this post was published earlier today, many commenters have made the point that, while it is true that it is state employees’ own money that funds the pension plan, when the pension plan comes up short it is up to the taxpayer to make up the difference.

    There is some truth in this – but not as much as many seem to think. Because the pension plan is a defined benefit plan – requiring the state to pay the agreed benefit for however long the employee may live in retirement- if the employee lives longer than the actuarial plan anticipated, the taxpayer is on the hook for the pay-outs during the longer life.

    But is this the fault of the state employees? The pension agreements are the result of collective bargaining. That means that the state has every opportunity to properly calculate the anticipated lifespan and then add on some margin for error. What’s more, the losses taken by the pension funds over the past few years can hardly be blamed on the employees.

    Take a look at what Sue Urahn, an expert on the subject at the Pew Center on the States, has to say about this when describing the $1 trillion gap that existed between the $2.35 trillion states had set aside to pay for employees’ retirement benefits and the $3.35 trillion price tag of those promises.at the end of 2008-

    To a significant degree, the $1 trillion reflects states’ own policy choices and lack of discipline:
    • failing to make annual payments for pension systems at the levels recommended by their own actuaries;
    • expanding benefits and offering cost-of-living increases without fully considering their long-term price tag or determining how to pay for them; and
    • providing retiree health care without adequately funding it

    Via Pew Center on the States

    That is the point. While the governor of Wisconsin is busy trying to shift the blame to the workers in an effort to put an end to collective bargaining, the reality is that it was the state who punted on this – not the employees.

    Further, by the state employee unions agreeing to the deal proposed by Walker on their benefits (as they have despite Walker’s refusal to accept it) they are taking on much – and possibly all – of the obligation out of their own pockets.

    As a result, the taxpayers do not contribute to the public employee pension programs so much as serve as insurers. If their elected officials have been sloppy , the taxpayers must stand behind it. But if the market continues to perform as it has been performing this past year, don’t be surprised if the funding crisis begins to recede. If it does, what will you say then?

  316. In Los Angeles, public sector workers and others held signs that read “We are all Wisconsin.”

    ==================

    LOL, that’s great!

  317. President Hillary Clinton is by far the most qualified and has the best solutions for calming this tinderbox that is on the ignition stage put there by the worst phoney potus in our history.He has been cut copied and pasted to appease the haplrss black populance with high hopes of stimulus patments for the rest of their lives.So far they have bought guns drugs flashy cars and bikes and are killing themselves off 24/7.Is this America turning into a Chicago and Detroit mother country? The answer is
    IMPEACH Kick them out of OUR WHITE HOUSE and Have Presideny Hillary Clinton restore our honor and respect

    By an angry and disgusted veteran of WWII watching it all going to waste ABM93 soon

  318. basil9
    February 26th, 2011 at 6:36 pm

    Yes, you summarized federalism perfectly. ObamaCare is the prime example of this, this is why the DOJ is not asking for a stay of the FL judge’s dismissal of the Obamacare bill. And if this bill is not found unconstitutional, it is the end of fedealism that the founding fathers fought for, it is not a democratic republic, it is not a federation of states, it essentially a centralized entity that can dictate to the states what to do, how to do it.

    In pretty much all states, Medicaid takes up a huge chunk of the budget, so it will no longer matter how hard a state tries to balance its budget, when the impositions by the Federal govt are massive, so the state can really only do 1 of 2 things, either raise state taxes to support these massive federal programs forced on the state or there will be rationing of these federal programs as the states refuse to increase state taxes to accomodate these increasing federal programs and then ask for excemptions from the fed govt from these federal program.

    2 cases in point as example, in AZ, there will be huge cuts to medicaid, mainly because the state cannot afford it any longer with its budget deficits, so what happens? Gov. Brewer askes HHS Sebelius to allow the cut, Sebelius has no choice but to allow the cuts in services in Medicaid, and mind you, this is all before Obamacare even kicks in.
    TX is in this same boat and from what I have read they plan to to get rid of Medicaid and make it a completely state run entity, that way they are no longer dictated by the Federal govt.

    So with Obamacare, it appears that the DOJ wants this to drag out for 2 years so that the implementation can start and then will be hard to undo, the thing is, most states have caught on and therefore comepltely holding off, rejecting all fed, money and the a large expansion of federal mandates on states and indiv.

  319. turndownobama
    February 26th, 2011 at 10:43 pm
    In Los Angeles, public sector workers and others held signs that read “We are all Wisconsin.”
    *************
    Really? Feel free to be one of the highest taxed citizens in the USA.I am from WI and the tax rate is a killer. The manufacturing bases that filled the coffers are all but gone to China, so it’s poetic, but unrealistic. We are not in 1959 anymore. There is no going back I am afraid and the public sector is about to understand that.

  320. People held signs that called Walker a parasite and a dictator and demanded voters recall him
    ******

    Oh my, where is the liberal outrage, where is the civility?

  321. British military planes entered Libyan air space to rescue oil workers and others from desert locations Saturday in a daring and secret mission meant to save those unable to flee escalating violence.

    The C-130 Hercules planes, carrying Britons and other nationals, safely landed in Malta after picking up the civilians south of the eastern Libyan port of Benghazi, Defense Secretary Liam Fox said.

    The rescue mission was bold because few planes have been able to fly through Libyan air space. It was not immediately clear if it was a British special forces mission, but the government has not ruled out using the SAS to evacuate Libyan oil fields and rescue trapped Britons.

    The mission apparently took place with great secrecy. Rescued oil worker, Peter Dingle, told the BBC that workers were told to stay quiet.

    “We knew this morning that the military was coming to pick us up, but we weren’t allowed to phone home — there were no lines anyway — because when you inform the families it gets out in the media, and the British military need to keep this as quiet as possible,” Dingle said.

  322. Obama can and might decide calling Cairo home… he might legitimately qualify under Egypt’s new constitutional amendments and consider a new career as a Rent-A-President.
    ————————————————
    Rent a president? No. If it is Obama then its rent a gigolo. And his campaign song has already been written:

  323. What We Don’t Know About The Middle East
    Larry Johnson
    No Quarter

    The romantics and the naive celebrate the outbreak of “democracy” in Egypt, Libya, Bahrain, Yemen, Algeria and the potential to spread to Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Jordan and maybe Iran. If this was a Hollywood movie that might be a reasonable point of view, but something else is going on.

    Let’s start with Egypt. The so-called people’s revolution was a clever coup by the Egyptian military, who apparently decided that Hosni Mubarak’s time was up and that he had to go. If you are counting on a new, secular democracy emerging in the land of the Pharaohs you are delusional. Do you seriously believe that the new Egypt will be less Islamic, more favorably disposed to Israel and willing to support equal rights for men and women? If so, I have a bridge to sell you.

    I do not believe the United States is in a position to control events in the world. But we sure as hell have a variety of resources and capabilities to influence the course of events and even intervene, both overtly and covertly. In the case of Egypt the Obama Administration decided to sit on the sidelines and play cheerleader. But our strategic interests in the region supersede what happens inside of Egypt. We should have been asking, “what does this mean for the region and, in particular, Israel’s security?”

    Niall Ferguson has a terrific piece in Newsweek highlighting the absence of a strategic vision by Barack Obama (you can read the full article here):

    “The statesman can only wait and listen until he hears the footsteps of God resounding through events; then he must jump up and grasp the hem of His coat, that is all.” Thus Otto von Bismarck, the great Prussian statesman who united Germany and thereby reshaped Europe’s balance of power nearly a century and a half ago.

    Last week, for the second time in his presidency, Barack Obama heard those footsteps, jumped up to grasp a historic opportunity … and missed it completely. . . .

    The result has been a foreign-policy debacle. The president has alienated everybody: not only Mubarak’s cronies in the military, but also the youthful crowds in the streets of Cairo. Whoever ultimately wins, Obama loses. And the alienation doesn’t end there. America’s two closest friends in the region—Israel and Saudi Arabia—are both disgusted. The Saudis, who dread all manifestations of revolution, are appalled at Washington’s failure to resolutely prop up Mubarak. The Israelis, meanwhile, are dismayed by the administration’s apparent cluelessness.

    Last week, while other commentators ran around Cairo’s Tahrir Square, hyperventilating about what they saw as an Arab 1989, I flew to Tel Aviv for the annual Herzliya security conference. The consensus among the assembled experts on the Middle East? A colossal failure of American foreign policy.

    This failure was not the result of bad luck. It was the predictable consequence of the Obama administration’s lack of any kind of coherent grand strategy, a deficit about which more than a few veterans of U.S. foreign policy making have long worried. The president himself is not wholly to blame. Although cosmopolitan by both birth and upbringing, Obama was an unusually parochial politician prior to his election, judging by his scant public pronouncements on foreign-policy issues.

    In Libya we face a different problem. Qaddafi is a madman, always has been. In this case the United States should have intervened to expedite his ouster. Instead Obama sat on the sidelines until events in Libya had moved way beyond our control. Instead of providing covert support to key military officers to facilitate Qaddafi’s removal we have been passive. But this is not a simple case of just removing an existing government. The world economy is at risk. Libya’s role in supplying oil, especially to Europe has the potential to hit the weak global economic recovery like air brakes.

    Who is in charge in Libya? That is the unknown and that is potentially dangerous. At this juncture the most likely scenario is that Qaddafi will be removed, probably killed, but there are still people loyal to him who can pursue a civil war. His supporters will be in a weak position. Guess what folks in a weak position turn to? Terrorism.

    The contagion is spreading. Yemen appears next to fall. Tribal chiefs previously loyal to President Saleh are abandoning him:

    Two powerful tribal chiefs in Yemen joined opposition forces demanding the ouster of the country’s longtime president Saturday, a new sign the embattled leader might be losing his grip on the impoverished, conflict-ridden country.

    The defections were a blow to President Ali Abdullah Saleh because the chiefs abandoning him are from his own tribe, the Hashid. That was a signal that he may not be able to capitalize on tribal rivalries to maintain power, a tactic he has successfully employed in the past.

    Saleh has been a classic opportunist. When it has suited his purpose he has backed the U.S. When it does not, he goes his own way. That said he has been fairly supportive in dealing with the problem of Islamic terrorism. When he goes we face a serious problem of Yemen becoming a base for harboring and facilitating terrorists like Awlaki, who are keen on attacking the United States. In addition, their proximity to Saudi Arabia puts them in a strategic position to work on destabilizing Saudi Arabia.

    Here it gets real interesting and the key actor will be Iran. Forget about Ahmadinejad, the current Iranian leader. He’s not the real leader. He’s a convenient tool and will be removed when it suits the purpose of the mullahs and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard aka IRGC. The IRGC has already set up a robust intelligence operation in Iraq. Their next step will be recruiting Shia leaders in places like Saudi Arabia and Bahrain who will step up their activity to take down the Saudis. Given that the oil resources in Saudi Arabia are located in places where the Shia dominate then you have a recipe for more chaos in the oil markets. Think that will promote economic growth?

    A friend on the inside of the Obama Administration told me that decisions at the NSC are being driven primarily by domestic political considerations. There is no focus on U.S. strategic interests. It is all about getting Obama re-elected. We have entered a perilous time in world history and the man at the helm of the United States does not know the first thing about sailing our ship of state.

    Sorry to be such a downer, but this man child is in over his head and does not have a clue about what to do. One of the few adults capable of providing leadership in this process, Hillary Clinton, is being shut out by the likes of NSC advisor Tom Donilon, his hatchet man, Dennis McDonough and for CIA official, John Brennan.

    This crisis would tax our most experienced, wise foreign policy experts. Unfortunately Barack Obama feels so threatened by competence that he chooses to surround himself with second rate talents. When November 2012 rolls around we will realize that the debacle of Jimmy Carter was but a blip. Obama is doing major damage.

  324. I’m not joking, this is not a joke :

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/blogs/live-feed/jennifer-aspen-cast-abcs-good-161355

    Jennifer Aspen Cast in ABC’s ‘Good Christian Bitches’

    The dramedy, from Sex and the City executive producer Darren Star and based on Kim Gatlin’s book, follows a woman who moves back to her Dallas neighborhood after a divorce only to become the center of salacious gossip from the community’s church-going wives.

    Aspen is the first actor cast in the project. She’ll play one of the “bitches.” (And the network will most definitely have to change the title to something more G-rated.)

    ABC Studios is still working on casting the lead after Christina Applegate, one of pilot season’s most in-demand actresses, passed on the role.

    ………………………………………………………………………………

    What’s next from ABC, Slutty Nuns, Hispanic Ho’s. they seriously need to re-evaluate their development dept. I do hope people complain about this.

  325. This man child is in over his head and does not have a clue about what to do. One of the few adults capable of providing leadership in this process, Hillary Clinton, is being shut out by the likes of NSC advisor Tom Donilon, his hatchet man, Dennis McDonough and for CIA official, John Brennan.
    —————————————————–
    No wonder our foreign policy is in shambles. Just look at these three sophomoric idiots. Jointly and severally they are a foreign policy disaster. Political hacks with no judgment. The best of the lot is Brennan, and he has fallen on his sword on several occasions. By the way, where is Janet? Rolling out the carpet for the illegals, and drug lords I am sure. If we stuck her in there with the other three we would have four of a kind. Obama is the joker–so with him we would have five of a kind–which is this case is a sure losing hand.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denis_McDonough

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_E._Donilon

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_O._Brennan

  326. As expected Oman is off now.

    Omani police use rubber bullets against protesters in Sohar. Two deaths reported. Army deployed in area.

  327. wbboei,
    If this is true what Larry Johnson is saying which I too believe to be true….why isn’t someone raising some flags about this….there is such a thing as the 25 admendment to remove a President if he is not doing his job or is sick?

    These events are being run by a chosen few…Obama is just the tool! The chaos here as well as everywhere else is a grand scheme….by whom??? The New World Order or just the CFR???

  328. I think I have figured out what is taking obama so long to take action on the middle east. He will do anything to stay on the good side of the Arab regimes. And if that means throwing the people and Israel under the bus, then so be it.

  329. A friend on the inside of the Obama Administration told me that decisions at the NSC are being driven primarily by domestic political considerations. There is no focus on U.S. strategic interests. It is all about getting Obama re-elected.

    ——————

    wbboei, this boob is destroying the country with his childish ego and narcissism. He has neither a vision nor a strategy for foreign policy – he just keeps trying to jump on this bandwagon or that one, depending on what he thinks will be the popular stance.

  330. Qaddafi Deposited Billions in London Ahead of Asset Freeze

    LONDON- As the United States moved to lock up the American assets of Muammar al- Qaddafi Friday, it was revealed the Libyan leader secretly deposited £3 billion –$4.8 billion — with one of London’s private wealth managers last week in an attempt to protect his family’s fortunes.

    The deal was brokered on Qaddafi’s behalf by a Swiss-based intermediary who had previously approached another well-known British stockbroking firm five weeks ago with a view to depositing funds.

    However, when that stockbroker discovered the ultimate identity of the source of the funds, it advised the intermediary to take his business elsewhere.

    “I said no, because personally I’m not comfortable dealing with murdering tyrants with blood on their hands,” the chief executive of the firm told The London Times.

    On Friday, President Obama imposed sanctions on Qaddafi’s government over a brutal crackdown on protesters, in an apparent attempt to further weaken the long-time strongman’s teetering rule.

    Obama wielded presidential power in an executive order, seizing assets and blocking any property in the U.S. belonging to Qaddafi or his children.

    In a statement, Obama said the measures were specifically targeted against the Qaddafi government and not the material wealth of the Libyan people themselves.

    “By any measure, Qaddafi’s government has violated international norms and common decency and must be held accountable,” Obama said in a statement.

    “These sanctions therefore target the Qaddafi government, while protecting the assets that belong to the people of Libya.”

    Qaddafi, whose 42-year regime is closer to collapse than ever, has been secreting money out of his oil-rich but financially impoverished nation and into private accounts around the world.

    The U.K. Treasury stepped up efforts to trace and freeze Qaddafi’s assets in Britain Friday, which are believed to include billions of dollars in bank accounts, some commercial property and a $16-billion mansion in London.

    The Swiss Government told its banks Friday to freeze any assets belonging to Qaddafi, issuing a comprehensive blocking order covering 29 people, including the dictator’s wife and children, some of his wife’s relatives and six officials of the regime.

    Also Friday, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton welcomed action by the U.N. Human Rights Council “in condemning human rights violations and violence committed by the Libyan government against its own people.”

    “We strongly support the Council’s establishment of an independent commission of inquiry to investigate these violations with a view towards ensuring that those responsible are held accountable,” Clinton said.

    Clinton said the U.S. would work to build support for a resolution to suspend Libya from the council, with talks set to resume Saturday.

    Qaddafi made a surprise appearance in Tripoli’s Green Square earlier Friday, telling supporters to “prepare to defend Libya” as the U.S. announced it had suspended embassy operations in Tripoli and would temporarily withdraw all its employees.

    The erratic, unpredictable Qaddafi, speaking from atop a rampart in images shown on state television, also declared arms depots would be open to his supporters if necessary, AFP reported.

    As for the protesters whose weeks of battles with government troops vastly weakened his onetime stranglehold on power, Qaddafi vowed, “we will fight them and beat them.”

    Wearing what was described as a winter jacket and a hunter’s cap, and thrusting his arms into the air and shaking his fists, Qaddafi told the cheering crowd, “Life without dignity has no value, life without green flags has no value. Sing, dance and prepare yourselves.”

    There were reports of intense clashes Friday in the streets of Tripoli, although no casualty toll was immediately available. However, Libya’s former deputy U.N. ambassador said “thousands” had been killed since fighting erupted in the country Feb. 15.

    As the situation in Libya deteriorated, White House spokesman Jay Carney announced the suspension of U.S. embassy operations in Tripoli. The State Department advised a plane left for Istanbul, Turkey Friday afternoon carrying American citizens, and Fox News Channel said these included the last remaining embassy personnel.

    In Tripoli, several witnesses told CNN intense clashes had erupted in multiple parts of the city after Friday afternoon prayers. One witness said protesters in western Tripoli were met by plainclothes security forces who fired guns at them and later used tear gas to disperse the crowds.

    “We’re all in our houses like we’re sitting in jail,” a Tripoli resident said Thursday. “We can’t go outside or we get shot. We hear the bullets.”

    Qaddafi’s eldest son, Saif al-Islam Qaddafi, in an interview with CNN-Turk Television taped Friday in Tripoli, vowed his father would never depart.

    Asked if Qaddafi had a “Plan B” to leave Libya, his son replied, “We have Plan A, Plan B, Plan C. Plan A is to live and die in Libya. Plan B is to live and die in Libya. Plan C is to live and die in Libya.”

    French President Nicolas Sarkozy became the first world leader to bluntly demand Qaddafi’s ouster.

    “Mr. Qaddafi must go,” Sarkozy said during a visit to Turkey. “The systematic violence against the Libyan people is unacceptable and will be the subject of investigations and sanctions.”

    http://www.foxnews.com/world/2011/02/26/qaddafi-deposited-billions-london-ahead-asset-freeze/?intcmp=obinsite#

  331. Listening to Christiana, and they are interveiwing 2 Rep and 2 Dem Gov. The Reps are tearing them apart over the Dems leaving WI. It is funny how I view things now. Reps would use those tricks or other if they felt they needed and wanted to. They spend all of their time running each other down.

    Organizations like that I would think fall apart at a certain point.

  332. Wait a minute- the youth, Obama’s focus group, the youth- will soon be running Charlie Sheen for president. The tough talking Bad guy making reportedly $2,000,000 an episode per show is not going away quietly, in fact he said, “he’s going to War”… with his former producers and the CBS network.

    It’s really sad that an admitted addict, (addicted to meth which incidentally will eventually kill you) knows what he wants, has a cognition factor of +10- makes more sense and outshines the stumbling, muted president of the United States tripping himself up on broken promise after broken promise.

    Don’t be surprised as the actor, Joe Pesci said in ‘My Cousin Vinny’ using the phraseology, “our yutes” will be running the country in 20 yrs. It’s sad to think, the best we can do as an example of a US president is the stumbling, untrustworthy, Barack Obama
    _____________________________

    Charlie Sheen to CBS, Warner Bros: ‘We Are at War’

    Charlie Sheen has launched another crude attack against his bosses at CBS and Warner Bros following Thursday’s announcement that the remaining season of Two and a Half Men has been scrapped.
    On Friday, Sheen (now in the Bahamas) called into the radio show Loose Cannons and lashed out at his bosses – whom he called “clowns” – for “getting up in my grill, telling me how to live my personal life.”

    “I kept saying back off, back off – and they wouldn’t,” he added. “I kept asking for that respect and I couldn’t get it.

    “These guys are just a couple AA Nazis and really just blunt hypocrites,” said Sheen, referring to producers Chuck Lorre and Lee Aronsohn.

    He said his relationship with CBS Corp. president and CEO Leslie Moonves is done. Confirming a previous THR report, Sheen said Moonves visited him at home and asked him to seek treatment. “He rolled into my house and he made a man-to-man request, and I honored it,” Sheen said. “And I asked for a couple of things, and he’s not honoring that.

    We’re pretty much done here … unless he’s got a really good excuse for a guy who lives in the middle of the truth.”

    you can read the rest here:

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/charlie-sheen-cbs-warner-bros-161403

  333. It seems I am either angry or depressed these days when it come to politics…so few things that I care about are going forward.

    Now that Barry has shut down the space program, so we can bail out the banks that don’t loan people money, the car industries that make cars that we can’t afford gas to use, and spent all our money on their entertainment, trips, outfits, flights, and paying people off……………we have little or nothing left as the little worker bees that are now getting stripped of our rights.

    Fuck um all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Here is something that made me happy today, a plane flying while the last shuttle went off (tears), someone took a video of the shuttle from that plane.
    My family worked for NASA and the space program. I am only happy they are not alive today to see it’s last take off.

    http://io9.com/#!5771577/this-is-what-a-space-shuttle-launch-looks-like-from-an-airplane

  334. A friend on the inside of the Obama Administration told me that decisions at the NSC are being driven primarily by domestic political considerations. There is no focus on U.S. strategic interests. It is all about getting Obama re-elected.

    ——————

    wbboei, this boob is destroying the country with his childish ego and narcissism. He has neither a vision nor a strategy for foreign policy – he just keeps trying to jump on this bandwagon or that one, depending on what he thinks will be the popular stance.
    ————
    The man understands nothing but campaigning. Where is the great Leslie Gelb in all this? He fancies himself a foreign policy expert. He has got a lot of people snookered. Ferguson, my hero because he has the courage to speak truth to power, has thrown down the gauntlet to Gelb and rest of the foreign policy establishment. So where the fuck are you Leslie? Do you agree with Ferguson? Jesus Christ man the verdict here is self evident. But if you disagree then state your case in rebuttal man. Will you not call out Obama? Or do you think so much of your unearned reputation–and so little of your country, that you remain silent while he drags this country down to a place where Nazis like Soros can feast on its bones. Come on Leslie, be a man rather than a worm–or worse a Joe Kein whose membership in the Council of Foreign Relations remains one of life’s greatest mysteries, given his serial incompetence and tendency to tell whoppers. Is that asking too much of a foreign policy expert Leslie? Evidently, judging by your stony silence.

  335. and here goes Saudi……..

    AP: More than 100 leading Saudi intellectuals call for sweeping reforms amid small protests beginning.

  336. AmericanGal
    February 26th, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    This is an interesting article about the public employees pension question in Wisconsin–don’t know the author so don’t know if it’s valid or not:

    The Wisconsin Lie Exposed-Taxpayers Actually Contribute Nothing To Public Employee Pensions by Rick Ungar.

    http://blogs.forbes.com/rickungar/2011/02/25/the-wisconsin-lie-exposed-taxpayers-actually-contribute-nothing-to-public-employee-pensions/
    _______________________

    Unger is perfectly correct. Walker is LYING to Wisconsinites by omission. If you work for a municipality, Unionized or Not, you are paid out of the municipal budget (income from Taxpayer dollars) that has earmarked your salary as a worker for X-number of dollars per year. Your agreed-on pension plan is “YOUR” earned money taken out every week/month of your paycheck BEFORE taxes and put into the municipal run pension plan. The reason why, when you collect your pension, you pay Taxes, federal and state taxes on the money you receive.

    Here are another few things to consider. The Federal pension plan is uniform nation wide- federal pension holder do not have bargaining rights as do state and municipal pension holders.

    Whatsmore adding to the confusion of understanding City and State pension plans, each state has their own system of what is included in the pension and benefits packages. State and municipal pension plans vary from state to state and not all states are unionized.

    American Girl.. Go to the comment section of the Unger link where he does a good job of explaining the system in hundreds of Q&As..

  337. Shadowfax, the “new” R party and the teapartiers despise Newt. They are hooting and laughing on their blogs at his possible run. It will go nowhere. These populist conservatives who have arisen can’t stand him.

  338. Govt unions who keep insisting that they are the same thing as a coal-miners union are shooting themselves in the foot and looking ridiculous.

    Who are public workers bargaining against? There is no profit-seeking business on the other side of the table. Only a politician who has as much a vested interest in attaining big benefits for public unions as they do. When you have a newly elected Democratic governor stand on the steps of the capitol and assure the teacher unions that he’s going to try to get them the best deal possible, which side of the table is he on? “Collective bargaining” is a farce and kabuki unless you have actual opposing interests doing the bargaining. When no adversarial dynamic exists, you end up with a very skewed structure.

    When I asked where, in this dynamic, the taxpayers get a say, I’ve been told they get their say at the ballot box – when they choose the politician who will be bargaining. My response to that is that teachers and other state workers get their say at the ballot box as well. I just don’t see where one facet of govt “collective bargaining” with another facet of govt, for more govt, is anything but a lopsided mutual-benefit dynamic.

  339. HillaryforTexas
    February 27th, 2011 at 12:10 pm

    Agreed. BTW, thank you for your previous post about the tax cuts Walker signed into law, as a small business owner myself, I can say unequivacolly tax cuts help S corps a lot (the impositions of fed. taxes are huge, and any breaks at the state level are welcome), the large corporations have their own built in. I think people keep saying “tax cuts for the rich”, the bulk of these tax cuts are for not, I repeat, not for large corps, they are for small businesses, who are not by any stretch of the imagination…. rich.
    120 million in tax breaks for a span of 2 years, businesses will get some breathing room to at least sustain themselves and grow somewhat.

    I support Walker in what he is doing, I have read his bills, they are allowing the the benefits of public, not private, sector unions to be as the state can afford, the public unions will still be allowed to bargain for wages. I think this is a fair adjustment, this is not about going after middle class people, that suggests that other people who are working and not in public unions are not middle class; and it certainly doesn’t mean disrespecting the millions of public sector workers like teachers and cops, they are our fellow americans. But this is about reigning in benefits as a state can afford, and many of these items are codified into law now as well.

    I support Walker. As for Newt, cannot stand him, I agree with the Tea Party in their assesment, but if it ends up Newt against Obama, I will vote for Newt.

  340. basil9
    February 27th, 2011 at 11:41 am

    You’re welcome, much of this is new to me as well, but researching online provides so much information and a bigger picture.

  341. Posted by Moe Lane (Profile)
    Saturday, February 26th at 10:15PM EST
    54 Comments

    There’s just something special about seeing a would-be member of the modern Left’s Sturmabteilung shove around a counter-protester while screaming about ‘fascists.’ I assume that’s why the report is that this is a MoveOn.org guy: that sort of behavior is precisely the sort of room-temperature IQ maneuver that you’d expect from that crowd.

    Note that the counter-protester got shoved twice; also note that Mr. Brownshirt was fully decked out in his gang leathers Teamster jacket in the process. Hey, why don’t you sing “Look for the Union Label” next time you commit assault for the cameras? That should really bring the message home that you’re operating under the sanction of your union.

    Via @brooksbayne.

    Moe Lane (crosspost)

    PS: I fully expect this kind of situation to escalate until somebody’s dead or seriously injured. And I expect that to happen because the union goons that Dick Trumka is currently winding up and setting loose don’t understand that cameras are everywhere now, and that threats of violence and/or acts of intimidation are not going to be sufficient this time. So the unions will get more violent, and it will get caught on tape, and that’s when things will get truly ugly.

    So now would be a good time for the union leadership to start walking back from all of this. They won’t, because the union leadership has a collective mental map of the political landscape that’s twenty years out of date, but they should.

    Category: look for the union label, sacramento, Unions

  342. IOW, when the workers pretty much get to have large influence in picking who sits on BOTH sides of the table, that is not “collective bargaining” as generally understood. That is a rigged process.

    And if public unions could come up with some good-faith ideas to put some real adversarial accountability into that skewed process, I’d be willing to listen.

    Instead, they seem to be refusing to even admit that any lop-sided dynamic exists at all. That refusal is making me and many other taxpayers a lot less sympathetic.

  343. All these protests seem like organized chaos (to me). Who is doing what here? Tunisia is down with their PM resigning. What bothers me about all this is that there is no credible opposition in all these countries who can take the helm. What will fill the vacuum? Everybody looks to the US and what is US doing to help those people fill that vacuum responsibly?

    I know what Obama and his cronies are doing. They are thinking how does what look for Obama for 2012. Fuckers.

  344. Here is another little factoid that has been overlooked in the scheme of things.

    The New World Order/Global Economy- cannot operate succinctly putting in place a uniform pay-scale for workers Worldwide because of unions operating in the states simply because the Unions HAVE BARGAINING RIGHTS and the NWO/GE is setting up their own system and UNIONS stand in the way of that happening.

    Federal workers already fit into their paradigm, first of all, because they are NOT unionized and second of all, they DO NOT have bargaining rights.

    The ultimate aim of the NWO/GE is as an example, a secretary in say France, is paid the same as a secretary in the US. The pay scale is determined by fiat solely by the dictates of the NWO/GE as the accepted pay- it could be $5.00/pr hour or $2.00/per hr. The required number of hours considered a work week could be more than 40- it could be 50 or 60 hrs if you want/need the job.

    If Gov Walker is successful in removing the bargaining rights of union workers to their detriment, it will have a cascading effect throughout the country as a precedent setting virus spreading like wildfire from state to state, eroding more worker rights escalating the intended ‘feudal system’ planned all along by the New World Order for the HAVES and the HAVE NOTS.

  345. and here goes Saudi……..

    AP: More than 100 leading Saudi intellectuals call for sweeping reforms amid small protests beginning.
    ————————-
    Yup.

    Baraaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaak. Get your ass off vacation, stop running to campaign stops, get out there and save the world goddamnit. Stop bagging it. Shane . . . . come back Shane . . . the world needs you. Get out there and show them how a messiah eats an ice cream cone, and plays roller derby. That ought to tame the savage beast in the middle east. Oh and bring Tapper, the little Greek and Sully with you so they can admire your abs and give you soft ball questions like–is it difficult to be the first black president and how is it looking in Ohio?

  346. wbboei
    February 27th, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    I think tonight there will be another party, another motown party. The man is a walking lazy bum. Hillary warned over and over this fool was not ready! Mccain warned as well. Of course both were called racists.

  347. “And I expect that to happen because the union goons that Dick Trumka is currently winding up and setting loose don’t understand that cameras are everywhere now, and that threats of violence and/or acts of intimidation are not going to be sufficient this time. So the unions will get more violent, and it will get caught on tape, and that’s when things will get truly ugly.”

    Here is part of the video, brings back memories of when Hillary supporters were treated in the same way, the media ignored it completely, wewillnotbesilenced2008 dot com still has all the proof, and not a peep from the lame a$$ media.

    http://weaselzippers.us/2011/02/27/sacramento-teamster-thug-yelling-fascist-pigs-go-home-assaults-tea-partier/

  348. tim @ 12:24 – you’re welcome!

    When people start screaming about “tax cuts = bad!!!” one has to look and see precisely what was done. IMO, offering a two-year break to companies who will BE REQUIRED as a condition of those cuts to come in and employ WI residents is not a “coddle the rich” proposal. Nor is giving a tax break to existing WI employers for every new hire they take on.

    That’s a JOBS bill, not a “coddle the rich” bill. The companies are not getting something for nothing – there are jobs strings attached. That’s actually a positive and dare I say “progressive” use of the tax code to incentivize companies to hire with their money instead of just take profits out of state.

    And I’d bet my bottom dollar that most of those screeching that “Walker gave tax breaks to the rich!!!! ZOMG!!!!” never read and have no clue what those tax breaks actually were.

  349. HillaryforTexas
    February 27th, 2011 at 12:27 pm
    IOW, when the workers pretty much get to have large influence in picking who sits on BOTH sides of the table, that is not “collective bargaining” as generally understood. That is a rigged process.

    And if public unions could come up with some good-faith ideas to put some real adversarial accountability into that skewed process, I’d be willing to listen.

    Instead, they seem to be refusing to even admit that any lop-sided dynamic exists at all. That refusal is making me and many other taxpayers a lot less sympathetic.
    ***************************
    Why do you insist on making this an adversarial process. You pit public workers against taxpayers (aren’t all workers taxpayers? where does your disconnect come from), public unions against private unions, etc. This is a matter of all sides having equal power, not corps or govts having all the power. Why all the rightwing rhetoric on here, a Hillary blog. HRC would be shocked to hear she is not on the dreaded left, but on the right. If you hate the left, you cannot possibly be a supporter of Hillary. You can despise Obama, but that’s not the same as hating the left. How about some middle ground here.

  350. HillaryforTexas
    February 27th, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    Actually what Walker did is pretty smart, I don’t know if you noted this in your previous post, but to receive those tax breaks from the state, that business has to created 51% of the jobs within the state of WI itself.

    What I do not support is crony capitalism, if a company fails, then let it fail, no bailouts, it will hurt for a while, but we will not be using borrowed money to bail out failed companies. And I don’t think people, although many are beginning to understand now, understand about tax breaks and how they work. For example, Pelosi and idiots like Waxman pass a bill to ban regular light bulbs in 2007 and will force every american to buy those mercury additive efficient lightbulbs. Ok, so the regular lightbulb industry moves to China.

    So then industry here in America says fine, we will created manufacturing companies to manufacture those flourocent lightbulbs as congress has enforced this new law, well then guess what? EPA comes in and says…do X, Y, Z to be able to manufacture in America, the price of these bulbs goes up, if the company even gets that far, so the american businessperson says, heck I can move this company to China and make them for 1/2 the price, so then those manufacturing jobs are gone as well!!
    (this is in fact what happened in MA under Deval Patrick).

    So in the end, both sets of industries (regular and florecent bulbs) are driven out by the assisine policies of Pelosi, Waxman. I could care less about the democrat party, but americans will be hurt and screwed over by such stupid short-term, “play to the base” type policies. And oh yes, I can point to some repubs who have done stupid things like this as well. My point is there is no long term thinking in any policies, the only organization I have some faith in at this point is the Tea Party.

  351. There’s just something special about seeing a would-be member of the modern Left’s Sturmabteilung shove around a counter-protester while screaming about ‘fascists.’ I assume that’s why the report is that this is a MoveOn.org guy: that sort of behavior is precisely the sort of room-temperature IQ maneuver that you’d expect from that crowd.
    ———————————-
    This is a Sacramento Teamster assaulting a tea party member, just like SEIU members assaulted a black Tea Party member in Missouri during the health care town hall meetings. The way to squeeze this motherfucker is to find out who his employers is and drag that company’s name through the dirt. If they have direct dealings with the public, then make good goddamned sure that the public knows what kind of people they employ–people with a hair trigger who can go off the deep end at any moment. The public should boycott a company that employs people like that and when they try to say well he did it on off hours and we did not condone it, then tell them these kind of people will do it whenever they are provoked, and it does not matter whether they are on the clock. You are responsible because you hired this motherfucker, he is a clear and present danger to the public and we do not need you, your goods or your services. And we are telling every customer of yours the same thing.

  352. I would informational picket that employer and call in the police and the Sacramento Bee. The Teamos will come in and more hair trigger types will do their thing on camera. Then we have got a big story, which we can shove down the throats of Move-on. Org, and Obamas ground army of thugs.

  353. BCL, please show me how my assessment of the dynamic and incentives of govt unions differing from the dynamics and incentives present in private sector unions is wrong. Please be specific. Accusing me of “right wing rhetoric” is a laughable dodge to avoid addressing the truth or falsity of what I’ve said. It’s either true or it’s not.

    Where is the incentive to control costs on the other side of the table? And collective bargaining IS supposed to be adversarial process, by definition. That’s how it works. If it is not “adversarial”, it is ergo skewed to one side. “Adversarial” in this context does not mean hatred, it merely means opposing interests.

    And yes, the left as a group has lost their minds and is pissing off the public right and left. I refer to “the left” in that context not as liberal principles, but as the the body of self-labeled “left” people in this country doing the asinine things they are doing. That’s not “hate”. That’s a clear-eyed and cold logical analysis of what is happening.

    You can try to “shame” me with thinly veiled accusations of disloyalty and “hatred”, but I could care less. You still have not addressed the points I enumerated. I think for myself, thanks. And I’m so far beyond labels anymore that it’s ridiculous. I no longer operate on emotions and political tribal loyalties. Haven’t for a long time.

  354. HillaryforTexas
    I don’t need to address the points you eumerate. This seems to be a problem for you not for me. I don’t mind that you have these points of view and want to post them. You on the other hand, take everything personally and feel the need to attack. Bargaining assumes two sides, but does not have to have one side have all the power. If you and others refer to the Obama supporters as the Obama left or the far left, etc. your point of view would be clearer. It’s the heat of the rhetoric that I’m questioning. I also support the tea party because they took to the streets and protested. I support that. Now the unions are taking to the statehouse and protesting. I support that. IMO it’s the American thing to do.

  355. BCL – It’s a little ironic to accuse me of personal attack, when I merely defended myself against YOUR personal accusations of “hatred” and being a non-supporter of Hillary and a right-winger.

    Glad to know that you feel no need to, nor have any intention of, addressing the very logical points I made. If it’s all about vague feelings for you, then you’re right – there is really no productive discussion to be had. You can’t discuss policy if policy itself, and the effects thereof, is considered somehow irrelevant to the discussion.

  356. Mrs. S.

    …If Gov Walker is successful in removing the bargaining rights of union workers to their detriment, it will have a cascading effect throughout the country as a precedent setting virus spreading like wildfire from state to state, eroding more worker rights escalating the intended ‘feudal system’ planned all along by the New World Order for the HAVES and the HAVE NOTS.
    ———–
    No kidding. It makes me sick to come on the blog and see some shred union workers, their rights and praise WI Gov. Walker.

    Like I said before, this right wing tactic may very well help Barry in 2012 by dividing the haves with the workers.
    That extended tax break that Barry gave the Rethugs, based on, “These are the job creaters…”. How many new jobs have been created? Are we better off now, Hell NO!

  357. Clinton offers ‘any kind of assistance’ to Libyans
    (AFP) – 2 hours ago

    WASHINGTON — The United States is prepared to offer “any kind of assistance” to Libyans seeking to overthrow the regime of strongman Moamer Kadhafi, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Sunday.

    The top US diplomat spoke as she prepared to leave Washington for a ministerial-level meeting of the UN High Commission on Human Rights on Monday, and for bilateral talks with many of her counterparts about the crisis in Libya.

    “I think it is way to soon to tell how this is going to play out we are going to be ready and prepared to offer any kind of assistance that anyone wishes to have from the US,” Clinton told reporters.

    She also called on the Libyan regime to “call off the mercenaries,” referring to the government-hired troops said to be mowing down Libyans by the hundreds in a bid to prop up the government.

    “We are just at the beginning of what will follow Kadhafi,” Clinton said.

    “First we have to see the end of his regime and with no further bloodshed,” she continued, noting Washington is eager for his ouster “as soon as possible.”

    “We want him to leave.”

    Clinton’s remarks came a day after US President Barack Obama called on embattled Kadhafi to “leave now,” as his country teetered on civil war, saying the Libyan leader had lost his right to rule after attacking his own people to put down a popular uprising.

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5gfJ6OT_sF3Dtwb-1-IS4vzzVvxFg?docId=CNG.dc0b72776bd407dd19a74091d753ba46.541

  358. Flaming Post. Love it. Scott Walker has showing us what the Tea Party is about. They are not for smaller government. They are for more government of the populous and less government for the elite. The current economic is just their excuse to implement their radical “free market” policies at the expense of Free People.

    It is not about public versus private unions. It is not about workers making pay or benefit sacrifices through hard times to avoid layoffs. THOSE ARE SCOTT WALKERS LIES.

    Unions are necessary because the “free market” abuses the Free People if left unchecked. How many times must we relearn history? (Please come home, I promise I will not beat you again!). And Scott Walker is making it apparent he is ready, willing and able to abuse his power.

    Checks and balances. The country is out of balance from the wingnut in the Whitehouse, but the Tea Party is not the answer.

    I respect the Dimocrats that left town to tell them NO. After they screwed up so bad, giving the nomination to Oblowit in the first place, it is the least they can do for the people they let down.

    Passive resistance is a totally acceptable form of civil disobedience.

  359. “Why all the rightwing rhetoric on here, a Hillary blog. HRC would be shocked to hear she is not on the dreaded left, but on the right. If you hate the left, you cannot possibly be a supporter of Hillary. …”

    BCL, H4T has been on this blog long before you came and what you wrote there sounds pretty confrontational to me instead of addressing the substance in H4T’s comment and certainly not fair to go back and say she takes it all personally and attacks you. I find H4T’s logic the middle ground here. In some figurative sense, what is going on right now is a kind of collective bargaining between taxpayers and the govt union workers. The way the unions distorted the primary and brought Obama to the fore instead of Hillary ought to say something about where our loyalty should lie, if any. But we are not even going that far in arguing for fairness here in tough times.

  360. I realize that Hillary has support of people from the left, middle and even the right. The difficult part is all being on the same blog and some making it personal when it is really that the folks on opposite ends of that spectrum really disagree on the union busting agenda.

    This isn’t about our personalities, or who has been on big Pink the longest, it’s that we all support Hillary and yet may totally disagree with folks on the blog in beliefs.

  361. #
    Shadowfax
    February 27th, 2011 at 1:30 pm

    Mrs. S.

    …If Gov Walker is successful in removing the bargaining rights of union workers to their detriment, it will have a cascading effect throughout the country as a precedent setting virus spreading like wildfire from state to state, eroding more worker rights escalating the intended ‘feudal system’ planned all along by the New World Order for the HAVES and the HAVE NOTS.
    ———–
    No kidding. It makes me sick to come on the blog and see some shred union workers, their rights and praise WI Gov. Walker.

    Like I said before, this right wing tactic may very well help Barry in 2012 by dividing the haves with the workers.
    That extended tax break that Barry gave the Rethugs, based on, “These are the job creaters…”. How many new jobs have been created? Are we better off now, Hell NO!

    __________________________________

    The Obama initiative is to drive labor into subservience. Sure, he maybe giving Small Businesses tax incentives now because the imperative is to control the worker base ridding it of obstructions that can not be overcome by the NWO.

    Just last week Obama renewed the Patriots Act for another few years. Why is that? Because the Patriots Act usurps the Constitution which was originally a major stumbling block for joining the NWO because of the Citizens Rights it contains and the guidelines for operating a democracy. Now that mechanism has been breached, they are going in for the kill. The final hurdle removing union worker’s bargaining rights enabling the NWO to dictate pay scale. I doubt there will be pensions or benefits packages included for that matter in their plans but isn’t that the whole idea of the NWO?

    Employers controlling expenditures enhancing their bottom lines?

  362. This blog has always been about middle ground, neither Dem nor Repub and neither liberal nor conservative but above all fairness,logic, and individual point of view and problem solving. I am dismayed to see all these (new) lefty guys coming here spouting the same Democratic party talking points and allegiances when the party left them in the lurch at every corner. Grow a spine and think for yourself. If you go against Democratic logic, you won’t be accused of being a rightwinger or a Republcian here. Admin routinely uses righty sites to show Democratic hypocrisy and deception. Now, don’t go around accusing admin of not being loyal to Hillary, ha.

  363. Grow a spine and think for yourself.

    ———–

    Really?

    You feel good saying that to people on this blog or asking them to leave if they disagree with your views?

    You make this personal when it should be discussing the pros and cons of an issue.

    Believe it or not, you are not the only one that can read what Admin says and decide her/his point of view.

  364. “I know what Obama and his cronies are doing. They are thinking how does what look for Obama for 2012. Fuckers.”

    Agreed, pm317

  365. Just wait until the NWO is fully operational. If you own a SB such as a restaurant, you will be told how much you can charge for a cup of coffee or anything you serve in the restaurant will be under their strict guidelines.

    Free enterprise and the notion of earning now for your future retirement whether you plan on selling the business when ready to retire or going out like a lamb depending on SS and a retirement portfolio for subsistence.

    Self-employment will be a distant memory for entrepreneurs. I have been self-employed all my life and only over the last few years have I ventured into the private sector for employment.

    If a new Republican governor can come out of the blue and quash a decades long processes of employment expecting workers to fill in the gaps of economic shortfalls in a lagging economy, created by the greed of Banks gambling on derivatives and losing; well, sooner or later you’ll see the short sightedness of not supporting a decades long model for workers, when in fact your businesses will be next on the chopping block contemplated by the NWO.

    Believe me, I hate saying it… but if I didn’t, I’d feel remiss in at least giving some… food for thought.

  366. tim – 12:39,

    I couldn’t help noticing how those magnificent police horses barged fearlessly in between the two men and shoved them aside, resolving what could have become a violent incident.

    I’m doing a segment on therapy dogs and learning about their training and how they can growl, bark but never, ever bite if they are to be licensed to work with people. The trainer said it’s a lot like police horse training.

  367. On a lighter note,

    I came across this at hillbuzz and I couldn’t stop laughing at a baby who thinks the funniest thing in the world is her daddy ripping up a job rejection letter.

  368. I believe in collective bargaining as I have said here many times before. It gives labor some voice with respect to wages hours and working conditions. But I must tell you this: the people who are most enamorate of collective bargaining are the people who know least about it. And sometimes that is the members themselves. I have served as chief management negotiator for hundreds of negotiations over a thirty year period for bargaining units ranging from 10 to several thousand. In retrospect, I believe the unions were reasonable, with notable exceptions. They wanted an agreement both sides can live with. But the mystery of collective bargaining is not what happens across the table but what happens in private when the company and union representatives discuss how to move the process forward. Sometimes the relationship between the company and union is broken and a mediator can be helpful. Often the union leaders are under fire from their own members, and need help from management in staging some theater, or letting them strike to cool their heels. Where the problem comes in is when outside forces like politicians get involved and screw things up. Jimmy Hoffa the elder was well liked by company negotiators. He grew up in the trade, if your company had a problem he could read a balance sheet, tell whether you were bullshitting him, and if you needed relief you got it. He was a man of his word, until Bobby Kennedy went after him and then he got a little erratic. He ended up in Lewisburg. But the main point is collective bargaining is not wholly writ. It is merely the best vehicle we have come up with so far for giving workers a voice in their work lives. I could live without it if and only if there was some other reliable mechanism for ensuring that the rights of workers are adequately protected and that management cannot take away their livlihood. Some members of the Republican Party are pro union. Orin Hatch who opposed common situs picketing in the 1970s was a close friend of Jackie Presser. But there is a large segment of the party which is centered in the south and west which is not favorably disposed toward unions and we are seeing that now. When the Democrats are in power, the unions overreach and when the Repbublicans are in power employers overreach. This business of never letting a crisis go to waste works both ways, which is why it was unwise for the Dimocrats to push partisan advantage to its bitter extreme. What we are seeing now in Wisconsin is the inevitable result.

  369. One further thought on the subject: I trust collective bargaining far more than I trust human resource departments to protect the rights of employees. On that score, I have seen the best and the worst. If you are inclined to favor human resource departments to represent employees there is a book you need to read: Corporate Confidential–by Cynthia Shapiro.

    Today, 12% of the labor force is union. During the 1930s it was around 36%. Unions have lost their foothold in the private sector, except in the service industry. Most of the manufacturing jobs have been shipped off shore. Their redoubt is in government. If the unions lose this fight, their days are numbered. But with all that said, I believe they have mishandled this matter in Wisconsin, and we shall see if I am right. Trumka is a big liability.

  370. Oh, dear. As a self-labeled Leftist, I’d just like to agree with the following:

    “I also support the tea party because they took to the streets and protested. I support that. Now the unions are taking to the statehouse and protesting. I support that.”

  371. This is a matter of all sides having equal power, not corps or govts having all the power.

    ======================

    Yes. Both unions and corporations/owners contribute to politicians. We’ll never stop the owners from doing it. So for balance, we’d better let the unions contribute too.

    Imo we do need to make sure the unions follow their workers (by some sort of ‘right to work’ provisions), not the ‘union bosses.’ But given that, don’t cripple their right to use collective bargaining.

  372. when the workers pretty much get to have large influence in picking who sits on BOTH sides of the table [….]
    Instead, they seem to be refusing to even admit that any lop-sided dynamic exists at all.

    ====================

    The owners also have large influence in picking the politicians. Overall, I bet the owners/corporations have much more influence on elections than the unions do.

    You’re good at figures. If you think the unions have more influence than the owners, how about comparing the amount of donations from each side?

  373. Shadowfax
    February 27th, 2011 at 2:06 pm

    Grow a spine and think for yourself.

    ———–

    Really?
    —————

    Yes, really. I don’t like when a clique goes after interesting commenters who bring in a different point of view. I especially don’t like when they accuse the commenter of spouting right wing talking points or questioning their support for Hillary and such. I come to this from looking around various Hillary blogs.. they are so afraid of being called/labelled Republicans if they stray away from the Dem talking points/allegiances and in turn, they accuse very quickly the independence that some commenter exert by calling them Republican sympathizers. I knew this from the time I was writing for NQ and how that blog was treated like a pariah in the Hillary supporting world of lefty bloggers. And now that same persuasion is effecting this blog too. To me the worst insinuation here on this blog is to question a long time supporter of Hillary’s her loyalty. Hillary to me is about problem solving. She would have advised the AWOL Dems in the Wisconsin or the Unions guys about how to deal with Walker effectively by perhaps arguing for a middle ground.

    Union supporters on this blog are angry with hatred about Walker but they don’t have a solution to the current stalemate.

  374. the public unions will still be allowed to bargain for wages.

    =============

    Only within VERY tight limits. Don’t forget to mention that.

  375. I just don’t see where one facet of govt “collective bargaining” with another facet of govt, for more govt, is anything but a lopsided mutual-benefit dynamic.

    =================

    If you’re calling the union bosses a “facet of govt”, then count the owners/corporate donors as a third facet. If you mean the union workers as voters, then count the non-union voters on the other side as well.

    By any measure, the anti-union side has more power over the politicians. So let the unions keep what little they have — as long as they are honestly representing their members’ opinions.

  376. Is this site loading slow for anyone except me?

    If so, Admin, could you flick a little pink cigarette ash our way?

  377. Union supporters on this blog are angry with hatred about Walker but they don’t have a solution to the current stalemate.
    __________________

    I’m not angry and I support Union workers Rights. They do have a solution. They will fight on and never give up because they realize, as Taxpayers themselves, the governor is lying to a public that isn’t quite informed about public and private pensions as they might be.

    That initself is reason to shout down a governor using a lie to sway public opinion to follow his recommendation.

  378. I am torn about what’s going on in Wisconsin.

    On the one hand, as a 20 year union member, I definitely benefited from the organization – despite the dues paying and not agreeing with everything they did – and experienced firsthand their assistance when parents who were trying to milk the district falsely accused me of physically touching their kids.

    They had my back. But that’s because I MADE them protect me, which they were at first hesitant to do because the incidents were both caused when an administrator, who was a top union guy, put me in situations which he knew were dangerous just to save his own butt. I won’t go into great detail but suffice it to say that if I hadn’t demanded my rights from my union I would not have gotten them.

    By the same token, I now receive a modest pension from 20 years of teaching during which I paid yearly into the system and even had to “purchase” service credit at great expense when I moved from one state to another.

    On the other hand, the top brass in my union were often bullies, just like what I see going on in Wisconsin. Their bottom line was THEIR (and their cronies) compensation, protection and job improvement, not the rank and file. The union bosses where I worked either had full time jobs running the union or received hefty stipends for serving on the board. As union bosses, they got the best positions, if they were on staff, with the best kids in the best schools with the least amount of work.

    They did little if anything to help non-tenured teachers – those in the first three years who worked their butts off.

    The union in the towns where I now cover have been hesitant to protest the lack of a contract because they know how unsympathetic the residents have become to their lot. Next year’s budget calls for double digit increase in teacher’s health benefits, retirement fund and a 3 percent salary hike. People in this town have seen their wages diminish and their property taxes go up for years.

    IMHO, everyone, including the teachers, have to start giving something back. A salary freeze might be a good first step. Cuts in administrators would be another. A reduction in all those “special title” positions with low-kid contact would be a third.

    In the last state I taught, teachers were banned by law from striking so I don’t know how the Wisconsin demonstrators get away with it unless they are on winter break.

    About the 14 dims hiding out in Illinois, I say recall and replace all of them. I think it’s disgraceful that public employees, paid by the taxpayers, refuse to show up and do their job. I find it disgusting. But that’s my take.

  379. pm317

    Best that you don’t take things to a personal level by trying to push out bloggers here that disagree with you.

    We all admire Hillary, that is what we have in common…the rest, at times, not so much.

    We are all adults with our own histories on this blog, and others and need to move forward with each other on this blog not to make this a pissing contest on who speaks for the group and who is an outsider.

    I will wait for Admin to tell me I am out of line, otherwise I will fight for Hillary HERE!

  380. I think it’s disgraceful that public employees, paid by the taxpayers, refuse to show up and do their job.

    =======================

    Do you apply that to all picket lines getting their message to the public?

  381. basil9

    I agree with many things you said about unions. My job is a union job, although I did not know it until I accepted the job and my union is so weak I have not gotten a raise in 10 years and may get laid off. That being said, the teachers in WI did go back to work after last weekend.
    I think, as I have already said, that the union bosses taking union dues and using it to promote and push Barry is the real problem.
    I also don’t like the corporations doing the same thing or the wealthy getting more pull from their big bucks.

    I think this is the root of the problem, is not the workers, nor their right for collective bargaining – it is from political donations to politicians, that is what the repub. governors are trying to destroy, and the union employees are the ones that will be hurt.

  382. Union supporters on this blog [,,,] don’t have a solution to the current stalemate.

    ==============

    The solution is obvious. Compromise for the present. The WI unions affected h