August 21, 2013 at 8:26 am #95145
President Obama welcomes the 1972-1973 Miami Dolphins to the White House to honor their 1973 Super Bowl win and their undefeated season. August 20, 2013.
As you make it through Hump Day, don’t forget JJP at TWIB.
Drop those links. Engage in debate. Give us trivia and gossip too.
And always, have a peaceful dayAugust 21, 2013 at 8:27 am #95146
Good Morning, EveryoneAugust 21, 2013 at 8:41 am #95147
NEW DETAILS: VP Biden’s son Beau Biden has a mass in his brain, resulting in an overnight stay at a Houston, TX hospital – @KPRCmboyleAugust 21, 2013 at 8:57 am #95148
This one is Cut Your Nose to Spite Your Face-Worthy: Business Community Finally Realizes GOP Screwing Them Over. http://www.politicususa.com/20… …August 21, 2013 at 8:58 am #95149
Flipping the August script
By Steve Benen
Wed Aug 21, 2013 8:00 AM EDT.
There were some subtle ironies surrounding Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-Texas) anti-healthcare event in Dallas last night. For one thing, it was held in a city where local officials are eager to help citizens participate in “Obamacare” and use the law to get coverage for themselves and their families. For another, the event was hosted by the Heritage Foundation’s activist arm — and the Heritage Foundation helped write the blueprint for the Affordable Care Act just 20 years ago.
Regardless, how did last night’s event go? It was probably a little rowdier than organizers expected.
For those who can’t watch clips online, this video shows only a brief excerpt from DeMint’s speech, which was interrupted several times by protesters, some of whom chanted, “You have health care, we should too!”
The right-wing senator responded by mocking Organizing for America for relying on “fake grassroots” activists to show up at events like this one.
And with this, the flipping of the script is complete. In 2009, Democrats hosted raucous town-hall meetings on health care; in 2013, Republicans are hosting raucous town-hall meetings on health care. In 2009, conservative activists shouted at politicians, demanding that policymakers make it harder for Americans to get affordable coverage; in 2013, progressive activists are shouting at politicians, demanding that policymakers not take Americans’ affordable coverage away.
In 2009, the left was outraged that protesters would interrupt public meetings on an important issue; in 2013, the right is outraged that protesters would interrupt public meetings on an important issue. In 2009, Democrats condemned conservatives for using “fake grassroots” to exaggerate their political prowess; in 2013, Republicans are condemning progressives for using “fake grassroots” to exaggerate their political prowess.
As for Cruz, after one of the interruptions, the Texan told the audience, “I agree with them. They should have health care and Obamacare is causing more and more people struggling to climb the economic ladder to lose their health care.”
I suppose that’s the one remaining difference between this August and the one four years ago: in 2009, Democratic talking points were rooted in reality; in 2013, Cruz is spouting gibberish.August 21, 2013 at 9:00 am #95150
The company Corbett keeps
By Steve Benen
Wed Aug 21, 2013 8:35 AM EDT.
Ordinarily, the staffers chosen by prominent policymakers don’t generate much attention, and are largely invisible to the public. But once in a while — when, say, a senator with a fringe ideology hires a neo-Confederate, pro-secessionist activist to work on Capitol Hill — there are exceptions.
A classic example emerged this week in Pennsylvania, where Gov. Tom Corbett’s (R) administration hired Ana Puig to prominent post in the state Department of Revenue. The ideological inconsistency was hard to miss — Puig is a prominent right-wing activist and Tea Party spokesperson who made a name for herself railing against government and taxes. Now, as the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Thomas Fitzgerald reported, Puig “not only went to work for state government, she represents the people who collect the taxes to keep the beast purring along.”
But there’s more to this story than irony. Josh Israel fleshed out some additional details.
Speaking at numerous rallies, [Puig] became co-chair of and registered lobbyist for a local group called the Kitchen Table Patriots. At a 2009 rally, she argued that Obama was a Communist, in the mold of Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez. [...]
According to Keystone Politics, she defended Nazi memorabilia enthusiast in her organization as “a historian” and “an extremely smart person,” featured a blog promoting birther conspiracy theories and identifying the president as a member of the Muslim Brotherhood on her group’s website, and promoted events warning of the creeping threat of Sharia law in the United States.August 21, 2013 at 9:02 am #95151
Terrorism Masquerading as Journalism is Still Terrorism (@Maddow)
Tuesday, August 20, 2013 | Posted by Spandan C at 2:04 PM
Last night, Rachel Maddow used the first part of her show on MSNBC to go on an insane rant about Glenn Greenwald’s boyfriend (as well as partner in crime) being detained by the British authorities at London’s Heathrow airport. Maddow incessantly bellyached that Britain was abusing its anti-terrorism law to try to stop journalistic activity by Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras in reporting on NSA activities – which, if Rachel believes is unconstitutional, she needs a crash course in the fourth amendment – disclosed to them by the American fugitive and Russian guest Edward Snowden. “Journalism is not terrorism,” Rachel lamented over and over, in the process chiding the United States for not objecting to Miranda’s interrogation despite having advanced knowledge of it.
In addition the hilarious juxtaposition of someone who generally despises the US government telling other countries what to do suddenly getting bent out of shape because the Americans didn’t tell Great Britain what to do, in her cult-like worship of Glenn Greenwald, Maddow also decided to patently ignore the essential cornerstone of journalism herself – namely the idea that before going on righteous talk-radio style rants, one ought to wait for all the facts. All the facts about why Miranda may have been detained – that, as I pointed out, his activities of transporting stolen property (US and UK classified documents) may well have been a part of instigation of espionage by his partner and Poitras – and the facts about what terrorism is under UK and US laws.
Maddow said last night that terrorism is a real thing, immediately thereafter proving that she had no idea what that thing was in law. Let me educate Maddow on this, since she doesn’t seem to either know or care. Under US law, this is how terrorism is defined – 18 USC § 2331:
(1) the term “international terrorism” means activities that—
(A) involve violent acts or acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the United States or of any State, or that would be a criminal violation if committed within the jurisdiction of the United States or of any State;
(B) appear to be intended—
(i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population;
(ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or
(iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping;
Edward Snowden’s revelations – and Glenn Greenwald’s possible instigation of the revelations, which he himself hinted at, before backpedaling furiously – quite likely have caused danger to American lives as it gave away to terrorists our intelligence sources and methods. That’s not all. Greenwald openly threatened the United States, saying that it better hope nothing happens to Snowden, or the things he would reveal would be the “worst nightmare” for the US government. And no one – not even Greenwald, Poitras or Maddow, even claims that these revelations weren’t intended to influence the policy of one or more governments (namely the US and UK governments).August 21, 2013 at 9:04 am #95152
Monday, August 19, 2013
For Conservatives, “The Butler” is a Great Lesson in the Virtues of Being a “House Negro”
Some conservatives are not too happy with the new movie The Butler. As I wrote here, The Butler is an extremely “conservative” and “American” movie that the Right should love. Nonetheless, their complaints are expected.
The Butler features a predominantly African-American cast. The docudrama’s storyline also dares to culminate with the election of Barack Obama. These are two immediate strikes against its popularity among white conservatives.
Given that Barack Obama is the Right’s version of Satan, The Butler is a logical focal point for Obama Derangement Syndrome.
Moreover, as Fox News guest Erik Rush suggested last week Obama is apparently organizing gangs of black people to attack whites with the movie being a pretext that is:August 21, 2013 at 9:05 am #95153
August 20, 2013, 2:40 pm
They Can’t Handle The Health Care Truth
Aaron Carroll talks about the Republican health care dilemma, and makes a good point: it runs deeper than the specific fact that Obamacare looks the way it does because it has to. At the most fundamental level, you can’t guarantee adequate health care to everyone unless the people who don’t need help right now — the young, healthy, and affluent — are induced, one way or another, to contribute to the care of those who do need help. You can do this purely with taxes, via a single-payer system (and maybe even by having the government act as provider), or you can do it, Swiss or Massachusetts style, via a combination of regulation, taxes, and subsidies. But some way of corralling the lucky healthy into contributing is necessary.
For the vast majority of this group, this is still a good deal — as Ezra Klein says, nobody stays young and healthy forever, and only a very small number of people are so rich that they are better off on a lifetime basis with no guarantee of insurance at all. But conservatives balk at the notion of any kind of redistribution, even if it makes almost everyone better off. So they are unable to come up with an alternative.
What they have are fantasies — claims that somehow unleashing the magic of the marketplace can make health care so cheap that everyone can afford it. There is absolutely no reason to believe that this is true.
And this also means that their only chance of defeating Obamacare was to stop it before it went into effect. Once it’s in place, most people will see real benefits — and Republicans will have nothing to offer instead.August 21, 2013 at 9:38 am #95154
Anti-Obamacare Rage, Once a GOP Hit, Fizzles Despite Town Halls
Heritage Action may be launching town halls against the health-care law, but the rage that fueled the Tea Party wave has died down—and even Republicans are starting to walk away, says Jamelle Bouie.
by Jamelle Bouie Aug 20, 2013 4:45 AM EDT
Tea Party Republicans had a huge hit with their rage against Obamacare. It gave them control of the House of Representatives in 2010, fueled their anti-spending crusade in 2011, inspired the most vocal of the GOP presidential candidates, and elevated a host of right-wing politicians to the Senate, providing a national platform for the crusade against the so-called government takeover of health care.
Hits aren’t built to last, however, and after a while, this one began to fizzle. Mitt Romney’s constant attacks on Obamacare did little to help his White House campaign, and few Republican Senate candidates gained from their pledge to kill it. Those who did, like Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, were playing to a small audience of devoted fans who just wanted more of the same.
The magic has fizzled so much that some Republicans have begun to walk away from the project altogether, even as others work to turn Obamacare funding into cause for a government shutdown.
“Next to impossible,” said Tea Party favorite Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), when asked about the odds of repealing the Affordable Care Act. Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC) said much the same thing last month: “Listen, as long as Barack Obama is president, the Affordable Care Act is going to be law.” And even Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), the closest thing to a Tea Party avatar, has voiced skepticism that the law can be stopped. Asked by Fox News’s Sean Hannity about his support for the “defunding” strategy proposed by Senate conservatives, Paul said that while he supports it, he “may not be able to guarantee victory.”August 21, 2013 at 9:41 am #95155
Elementary School Clerk Convinced Gunman to Put His Weapons Down and Surrender
The school clerk said she tried to keep the assailant calm by asking him his name but, she said, at first he wouldn’t tell it to her.
Then, he began listening to her tell her life story. She said she told him about how her marriage fell apart after 33 years and the “roller coaster” of opening her own business.
“I told him, ‘OK, we all have situations in our lives. I went through a tragedy myself,’” she said. “It was going to be OK. If I could recover, he could too.”
Then Tuff made the request that she said helped end the standoff. She said she asked the suspect to put his weapons down, empty his pockets and backpack and lay on the floor.
“I told the police he was giving himself up. I just talked him through it,” she said.
Despite her efforts, Tuff said she’s not the hero.
“I give it all to God,” she said. “I’m not the hero. I was terrified.”August 21, 2013 at 9:48 am #95156
Bentivolio’s idea of a ‘dream come true’
By Steve Benen
Wed Aug 21, 2013 9:11 AM EDT.
We here at The Rachel Maddow Show have been fascinated by Rep. Kerry Bentivolio (R-Mich.) for a while, because even in a Congress filled with colorful characters, the Michigan Republicans stands out as … unique.
As Rachel noted a couple of weeks ago, Bentivolio was elected to Congress last year in a bit of a fluke — the GOP incumbent in a deep-red district resigned just four months before Election Day, leaving Bentivolio, a wacky perennial candidate, as the only Republican running. Bentivolio’s day job is working as a professional Santa Claus re-enactor and reindeer herder. He also played a doctor in a 9/11 truther movie, and took shirtless photos of himself kissing a reindeer.
Now Kerry Bentivolio is an actual member of Congress, hosting town-hall meetings like this one earlier this week. As Andrew Kaczynski noted, Bentivolio told his constituents on Monday that he wants to write and submit articles of impeachment against President Obama, which the congressman would consider “a dream come true.”
He added that after standing near the president for a speech, “I went back to my office and I’ve had lawyers come in. These are lawyers, Ph.Ds in history, and I said, ‘Tell me how I can impeach the President of the United States.’”
Bentivolio conceded that he’d have to find some “evidence” to avoid becoming “a laughing stock.”August 21, 2013 at 9:49 am #95159
Higher percentage of Republicans utilized Obamacare’s option to stay on your parents’ plan than Democrats. http://vlt.tc/10stAugust 21, 2013 at 2:15 pm #95171
Health care hypocrisy with a twist
By Steve Benen
Wed Aug 21, 2013 10:47 AM EDT
Peggy Noonan, a prominent Republican pundit at the Wall Street Journal, ran into a little trouble last week trying to discuss health care policy she mistakenly thinks she understands.
Indeed, as Ezra Klein explained yesterday, “Noonan’s column is a beautiful example of a writer so intent on criticizing Obamacare that she’s missed the fact that the law is doing precisely the thing she wants done. A reasonable reader of Noonan’s column would end up loathing ‘Obamacare’ and hoping for a replacement that looks like, well, Obamacare.”
At issue is something called Community First Choice, a new part of Medicaid that expands access to at-home care for the disabled. It’s a major breakthrough, which Noonan thinks she doesn’t like, but when she fleshed out her concerns, it sounded like Nooan was calling for changes that are already in the law.
Indeed, as it turns out, Community First Choice is all over the news, and Noonan isn’t the only one whose opposition isn’t quite as consistent as previously thought
Gov. Rick Perry wants to kill Obamacare dead, but Texas health officials are in talks with the Obama administration about accepting an estimated $100 million available through the health law to care for the elderly and disabled, POLITICO has learned.
Perry health aides are negotiating with the Obama administration on the terms of an optional Obamacare program that would allow Texas to claim stepped-up Medicaid funding for the care of people with disabilities.
The so-called Community First Choice program aims to enhance the quality of services available to the disabled and elderly in their homes or communities. Similar approaches have had bipartisan support around the country. About 12,000 Texans are expected to benefit in the first year of the program.August 21, 2013 at 2:22 pm #95172
Virginia’s First Lady Increasingly At Center Of Gifts Scandal
Eric Lach- August 21, 2013, 6:00 AM
The gifts scandal that has rocked the Virginia governor’s mansion has reached a critical juncture. After months of news stories and reports of a federal investigation, the Washington Post recently suggested that if charges are in fact coming against Gov. Bob McDonnell (R), they could come in a matter of days.
At the same time, the governor’s wife, Maureen McDonnell, has received increasing attention for her role in the scandal, while the governor and his team have taken to drawing bright lines between his actions and hers.
The scandal, for those unfamiliar, concerns tens of thousands of dollars in gifts and other money that Jonnie Williams, the CEO of a Virginia dietary supplements company, provided to the McDonnells in recent years. Much of the money came in the form of three payments — Bob McDonnell has insisted they were loans — from Williams to the first family. Williams gave Maureen McDonnell $50,000 in 2011. The following year, he gave $70,000 to a real estate business owned jointly by Bob McDonnell and the governor’s sister. Williams also, among other things, paid for a luxury shopping trip in New York City, a $6,500 Rolex watch, and wrote big checks for the weddings of two of the McDonnells’ daughters. In recent weeks, Bob McDonnell announced that the “loans” and all the “tangible” gifts from Williams had been repaid and returned.
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.