Friday, November 19, 2010

Headlines - Friday November 19

World Comparison Shows U.S. Healthcare Lacking
Thank Jebus Orrin Hatch is going to work his hardest to dismantle any Obamacare.
Wow, how did this just so happen to slip out -- a trashing of Sarah Palin by a collection of talking heads during a commercial break on Fox, all captured on a hot mike and YouTubed for your convenience?
Let's see ... I trace this back from Rumproast to Palin cultist Robert Stacy McCain at his own blog and The American Spectator, and from there I see that it was uploaded to YouTube by the anti-Palin blog PalinGates ... but the original, non-YouTube version of the commercial-break video was actually posted by Fox. Rupe 'n' Roger want you to see this!
Liberal ideas aren't "fringe"
In 1964, Lyndon Baines Johnson, not the most liberal of liberal FDR Dems, fought the right-wing poor-bashers by saying stuff like this in speeches all over the country (this excerpt comes from a speech he made in North Carolina on May 7):

Right here in North Carolina, the State where I stand, poverty has left its mark. Some people say that if these Americans are poor, it is their own fault. I have even heard others say that God ordains poverty for the poor. Well, I don't believe them, and I don't believe God believes them either.

Just a small comment: I know God doesn't believe that nonsense and I doubt that anyone beyond the 19% of the braindead population that follows the likes of Ron Paul and Glenn Beck believes it, either. So it isn't, like, "fringe" thinking. It's, like, "mainstream" thinking. So what we need, clearly, is a political party that won't run from reality like it was a bad smell. Ideas?

Your Congressperson got richer last year. You did not. 
From 2008 to 2009, the median household net worth for a member of Congress went up 19 percent. During the same time, the national median plummeted by 15 percent. This is known as a plutocracy. More »
President Obama as Wiley E. Coyote

.Greg Sargent on the Dem's cowardly ways: 

One last nugget from Richard Wolffe's new book on the Obama White House. In an interview with Wolffe, the President seemed to acknowledge that in pursuing bipartisan support for health reform, he and Democrats got snookered by a previously-thought-out GOP strategy to delay the process for as long as possible in order to politically damage him and the Democratic Party.

Here's the President on page 75:

"You have to give the Republicans credit, just from a pure political perspective, that they used every instrument available to them in the Senate to prolong the process in such a way that helped drive down support nationally, that gave everybody a sense that somehow Washington was broken," he told me. "At a time when everybody was worrying about jobs, for us to have to spend six to nine months on this piece of legislation obviously was not helpful."

Ok, wonderful. He supposedly gets it. Now what?  Each time Dems give in to Republican demands, the goal posts get shifted further to the right.  What is it going to take for the President to realize that the only end zone that matters for Republicans is the one that has them occupying the Oval Office in 2012?

Sargent is absolutely right in stating that there was no reason for the health care debate to drag on for as long as it did.  It was quite evident within the first month or so that Republicans had no desire to reach agreement on any part of reform.  By allowing Republicans to define the issues along their terms, Democrats saw public opinion on reform shift dramatically away from what it was at the beginning of 2009.  And so it has been with every other issue Democrats have attempted to deal with in Congress.

How many more times does the anvil need to fall squarely on their heads before the President and Democrats really do indeed get it?  It might be time to replace the Democratic donkey with a pic of a clueless Wiley E. Coyote.



Headline in the WaComPo: "GOP may be less eager than Obama for bipartisanship"

Gee, ya think??

After bitching and moaning these past two years that the White House has not been bipartisan (wrongly, as it were), the "newly emboldened" Party of No "have shown little enthusiasm for compromise."

Snort. Really. Wow, who could have seen that coming? Party over country, that's the gpukes in a nutshell. Asshats.


Sarah Palin: Queen of Spades
An interesting set of statistics and analysis from Mark gersh for CBS News: 
Fresh off a major shift in power in the House, we might expect another volatile congressional election in 2012.

Here's why: this year, 25 races were decided by 3 percent or less in the major-party vote share (13 Democratic and 12 Republican) pending recounts and final vote totals. Another 30 were decided by three percent - eight percent (18 Democratic and 17 Republican). Forty-two more races were decided by just 8 percent - 12 percent (25 Democratic and 17 Republican).
So overall, 56 Democratic and 52 Republicans won with majorities of 56 percent or less, and those races comprise 23 percent of the entire House. Add the unpredictable effects of redistricting to the 2012 equation, and the prospect of a 4th straight election with a turnover of 20 or seats is plausible.
This isn't to say it will happen, it's just a lot more forceful than saying, "It could happen." In fact, he goes on to make a pretty plausible case. Remember, the 2010 midterms saw Democratic voters stay home. In races where the difference was less than three points on up to eight points, that could've really made the difference. So, what's being said here isn't just that it's possible, but that it's really possible, even if it's way too early put money on anything yet.

Televangelist/con artist/homophobe Cindy Jacobs tells an audience of college students that she has personally "stationed angels all around this church" in order to "pierce the darkness of humanism and atheism." As a bonus in crazy, nasty homophobe Lou Engle comes on stage to babble in tongues and encourage the students to do the same. Mekka-lekka hi there!
Joe Biden: It Gets Better.

Family Research Council president Tony Perkins says that because the military is primarily made up of black, Latinos, and people from rural areas, President Obama will be forced to reinstate the draft if DADT gets repealed. Because everybody knows blacks, Latinos, and folks from rural areas are totally anti-gay and they'll all quit rather than serve alongside homos.
The military is not a red state/blue state institution. It unifies our country. It draws its dedicated members from all regions. Still, it is no secret that the military is a socially conservative institution. It recruits heavily from rural areas in the South, the Midwest, and the Inter-Mountain states. In our larger cities, black and Hispanic recruits are encouraged to consider the military — which has historically been a great ladder of achievement for racial and ethnic minorities. These are the very areas and groups who have been most resistant to the demands of the homosexual lobby. These are the very regions and groups who have rallied to our side whenever we put a defense of marriage initiative on the ballot. If these regions and groups do not enlist in our all-volunteer force, President Obama will be driven to the place he does not want to go: the military draft. No action on repeal of the military ban on homosexuality should be taken in this lame-duck session of Congress. No votes should be taken — except to postpone major social changes.
One gets the sense that Perkins thinks the repeal might actually happen. 
Suck it, Republicans!
Republican lawmakers who oppose the Democrats' health reforms should give up their taxpayer-subsidized health insurance and pay for their own coverage, say a group of progressive House Democrats.

In a letter to soon-to-be House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, the Democrats urged Republicans to stick to their principles opposing government-run health care and give up their own congressional health care plan.

"You cannot enroll in the very kind of coverage that you want for yourselves, and then turn around and deny it to Americans who don't happen to be Members of Congress," wrote Rep. Joe Crowley (D-NY). "If your conference wants to deny millions of Americans affordable health care, your members should walk that walk."

How many Republicans will go along with this? None. Exactly zero.


Margaret & Helen: Palin's Denial Park


It takes a special kind of evil to deny the unemployed extended benefits while at the same time calling for permanent tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires – a move which will increase the deficit by $700 billion over the next decade.

Washington is poised to stop providing extended unemployment benefits despite the huge number of laid-off workers, the paucity of job openings, the high rate of underemployment in every sector of the economy and stubbornly slow economic growth. That's because Republicans in the Senate insist that, unlike the hefty tax cuts they covet for the wealthy, the comparatively slender subsidies for the unemployed must not be financed with borrowed money. This penuriousness is not just hypocritical, it's bad economics.

The current federal program, which offers up to 73 extra weeks of unemployment benefits to idled workers, is due to expire Nov. 30. If it does, about 2 million unemployed people will have their benefits cut off in December.

…and it takes a special and pathetic kind of stupid to buy into so blatant an example of Republican hypocrisy.


Creedocide Pest Exterminator:


McConnell too busy for dinner with Obama, eats with Federalist Society instead

So Obama is snubbed, and the White House covers McConnell's ass.  McConnell won't appreciate the gesture, in fact he'll perceive it as a show of weakness by the President, and the President will try that much harder next time to make McConnell like him, likely by unilaterally conceding something incredibly important.  Which will only make McConnell perceive the President as an even weaker character, which will only make the President try to please McConnell that much harder next time.  It's just incredibly sad to watch.


First Gitmo detainee tried in real court not guilty on 284 of 285 counts

Too complicated! Let's convict this offensive hack's puppet instead.

Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani, the first Guantanamo Bay prisoner to be tried in a civil court, was acquitted yesterday on all but one of the 285 charges against him, so this nation was that close to having a freed terrorist walking through our culs-de-sac, stealing our children's bikes out of front yards and strapping bombs to our four-wheelers in the garage. Ghailani was convicted of "one count of conspiracy to destroy government buildings and property" in some 1998 embassy attacks, but really, what American hasn't conspired to destroy a little bit of government property in his or her day? This case proves we can never bring another terrorist into court, because there is a good chance they will be declared innocent by a bunch of NO-GOOD TERRORIST-SYMPATHIZING "AMERICANS," even if they are, well, innocent, despite all the years of torture. READ MORE »


The system probably needs to be overwhelmed - by Kay

One of the many, many things that drove me nuts about the health care debate was this framing:

There are not enough primary-care doctors to meet current needs, and providing health insurance to 46 million more people would threaten to overwhelm the system.

Obama administration officials, alarmed at doctor shortages, are looking for ways to increase the supply of physicians to meet the needs of an aging population and millions of uninsured people who would gain coverage under legislation championed by the president.

Health care is always presented in terms of scarcity and fear, where those who we politely term "the uninsured" are going to be mobbing in and grabbing a piece of a fixed "system" that is currently parceled out to "the insured".

Now that those of you who go without primary care might have a way to pay for it, we've hit a brick wall on delivery.

We in the system are afraid you will overwhelm the system. There simply isn't enough to go around. Sorry.

Is this how a mature grown-up country behaves?

Why not just calmly and deliberately look to providing the service, now that the payment mechanism is or will be in place? People who are terrified generally don't make good decisions. Maybe we could stop scaring both those "in the system" and those with their noses pressed up against the glass?

Thirty million people who will now have a method to pay for health care isn't horrible and frightening. It's a good problem to have. It's simply the predicate to the next step, which is delivery. An opportunity for someone to step up, fill the huge, gaping hole we decided was "acceptable" for some insane reason, and provide primary care to the people who aren't getting any. Because if they are going to be flooding waiting rooms when they are insured, they aren't just "the uninsured". They're "the people who don't get health care".

Whichever provider group is first in with a proposed solution should get serious consideration, like, 28 states serious, and that's happening. That's good. It's what's supposed to happen.

It doesn't have to be a frightening scenario where those of us in "the system" are protecting the allotment we've managed to secure, leaving 30 million people to "crowd the waiting room", fighting for scraps.


Jill: Another dispatch from the "Figure That Out All By Yourself, Einstein?" file


Only in the army, is blowing up a man's home viewed as a P.R. success

One has to wonder if our Army is being led by sociopaths:

In another recent operation in the Zhari district, U.S. soldiers fired more than a dozen mine-clearing line charges in a day. Each one creates a clear path that is 100 yards long and wide enough for a truck. Anything that is in the way - trees, crops, huts - is demolished.

"Why do you have to blow up so many of our fields and homes?" a farmer from the Arghandab district asked a top NATO general at a recent community meeting.

Although military officials are apologetic in public, they maintain privately that the tactic has a benefit beyond the elimination of insurgent bombs. By making people travel to the district governor's office to submit a claim for damaged property, "in effect, you're connecting the government to the people," the senior officer said.
So, by Army logic, if they destroy the homes of ten thousand Afghan families, that will bring them all closer to our side because they will all file for compensation.

That's bullshit, of course. What it does is swell the ranks of Taliban sympathizers. Every one of those families whose homes and fields are blown up the by Army will become a family with people who will cheer when they hear of an American soldier dying.
GOP to the unemployed: "go fuck yourselves"
The representatives from the party of Hoover blocked extending unemployment benefits.

Doesn't matter a fuck that for the last sixty years, it has been the practice in hard times to extend unemployment benefits. Doesn't matter a shit that unemployment benefits are stimulative, since damn few unemployed people can afford o save anything.

No, now, after eight years of going along with the Bush deficits, now Republicans feel a need to do something about the deficit. And when Republicans want to "do something" about Federal deficits, their targets are always the programs who help people who have fallen on hard times. But whisper the magic words "tax breaks for the rich", and you will see those same deficit hawks stumbling over themselves to vote "yea", no matter how much those tax breaks increase the deficit.

So if you are unemployed in this holiday season, go and properly thank a Republican politician or pundit for their concern and caring. (Do try not to injure them too badly, though.)
Nail the unctuous fuckhead to the wall and leave him hanging there "The Democratic chairwoman and the Republican ranking member of the House of Representatives ethics committee have agreed to investigate Rep. Joe Wilson further for possible abuse of taxpayer-funded expense money during his travel abroad. ... Emphasizing their bipartisan decision, Democratic Rep. Zoe Lofgren of California, the ethics panel's chairwoman, and Rep. Jo Bonner of Alabama, its senior Republican, said they "had jointly decided to extend" the probe of Wilson. ... House rules give the committee 45 days, until Dec. 30, to announce its findings, but Lofgren and Bonner said in a terse statement Monday night that they'd decide on possible further action by Dec. 20."
Activist judge rules against freedom to stop Muslims from worship

Let's just get rid of all laws and the legal system. Too susceptible to Sharia.

A new mosque is going to be built in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, despite the lawsuits of some angry Tennesseans, because a judge overruled this Christian nation's age-old and CONSTITUTIONAL freedom to stop Muslims from being Muslim. That's right, some people in Tennessee who are NOT white Christians are going to be allowed to worship non-Christian entities in a building they're going to put on some land they purchased. Obviously, because the plaintiffs were lawyers, they understood that Sharia is a scary ghost going around the state and their very offices eating law books as ghost food, but this stupid judge didn't even care. And yes, if you were wondering, these lawyer guys do have terrific quotes!

"We need to take what has happened in Murfreesboro out of the shadows of Shariah and shine on what's happened in the light of freedom," Smith said in his closing statement.

Yes, when Sharia came to America, it decided to take over the number-one most prized part of America, something called "Murfreesboro."


But global warming is a hoax, and the only explanation is that the coral are in on it "Unusually warm ocean temperatures in the summer and fall of 2005 caused a mass die-off of Caribbean corals that is the worst ever recorded there, according to new research published yesterday in the online journal PLoS ONE. ... More than 80 percent of corals bleached and over 40 percent died at many sites in the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico that year, the study says, arguing the 2005 event will have long-term consequences for the health of reefs. . Such events are also likely to become more common as global warming continues, concludes a team of 65 authors in 22 countries. They predict "a troubled future for tropical marine ecosystems under a warming climate.""


Yellow Dog: The Afghanistan clusterbleep that is destroying America.

Whether it's true or trumped up to punish him, it's despicable. "Sweden is to issue an international arrest warrant for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange in a rape case. Prosecutors said they would seek the warrant after a court ruled he should be held for questioning. An initial inquiry had been dropped in August. Mr Assange, an Australian who does not live in Sweden, says the allegations are part of a smear campaign. Wikileaks has published confidential material relating to US military activities in Iraq and Afghanistan. Mr Assange, 39, denies allegations of rape, sexual molestation and unlawful coercion, which stem from a visit to Sweden in August. A Stockholm prosecutor started an investigation shortly afterwards, but the case was dropped by the chief prosecutor a day later."


National Enquirer: Willow Palin Had a 'PREGNANCY SHOCKER'


Video- Fox's Gretchen Carlson Says Sarah Palin Was "Self Defecating"

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