11.30.2008

President @$$hole

Every time I think it's almost over, that he can't possibly do anymore damage, Bush makes proves me wrong. I'm sick to my stomach over these last minute rapings of my country.

From clammyc:

Whether it was "Mission Accomplished" or "you’ve covered your ass now" or "heckuva job, Brownie" or the 16 words or hundreds of signing statements or "bring em on" or "now watch this drive".....I could go on and on and on.

And while much is in the past, and on one level we should be happy that he (and his criminal cronies) will be gone real soon and the adults will take over, it is the actions Bush is taking even now, on the way out the door, that show that we still have a vindictive nasty selfish asshole as our President.

Bush Aides Rush to Enact a Safety Rule Obama Opposes: The Labor Department is racing to complete a new rule, strenuously opposed by President-elect Barack Obama, that would make it much harder for the government to regulate toxic substances and hazardous chemicals to which workers are exposed on the job.

This is just one of a large number of things that are being done right now by Bush as one last "fuck you" to the country...

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Tom Friedman's Continued Revisionism on Iraq

How “journalists” like Tom Friedman still manage to make a living is beyond me. This guy really doesn’t know his ass from his elbow. It doesn’t matter whether he’s talking about Iraq or Global Warming. He talks out of his ass.

Glenn Greenwald dissects the revisionist bloviator, Thomas Friedman:

With a new administration ascending to power in a matter of weeks, witnessing Beltway denizens desperately scampering to re-write their role in the last eight years is nothing short of dizzying:

[snip]

From the deranged desire to force Iraqi civilians from Basra to Baghdad to "suck on" his imaginary "very big stick" -- "pound them across the side of their heads" with his "2-by-4" -- to his magnanimous goal of "collaborating with them" to "build progressive politics," Freidman's justification for the invasion radically changes without notice or acknowledgment.

Even as recently as May of this year, Friedman was arguing that the "real umbrella story in the Middle East today" is the "Cold War" between what he called -- with typical adolescent, banner-waving simplicity --"Team America" and Iran, and he confessed that everything we're doing in the Middle East is about our our "struggle for influence across the region." In November of last year, Friedman was again beating his little chest while instructing Barack Obama that -- in order to deal with Iran -- he would need "Tony Soprano by your side, not Big Bird" and would require "a Dick Cheney standing over his right shoulder, quietly pounding a baseball bat [another big stick] into his palm." Yet today, Friedman seamlessly hauls out the self-glorifying claim that the "most important reason" for the invasion of Iraq is that we wanted to teach them the joys of Freedom.

[snip]

But with this intense Friedmanesque revisionism well underway -- whereby war cheerleaders like Friedman were Right and Good all along and it was only the incompetent Bush and Rumsfeld who ruined everything with their "bumbling" -- it seems increasingly likely that the opposite lesson will be learned. Attacking, invading and occupying other countries in order to change their governments to ones we prefer is the smart, wise and just thing to do. Friedman's term for it today is "collaborating with them to build progressive politics." Especially if there is another terrorist attack on U.S. soil -- but even if there isn't -- the only lesson being drawn from the Iraq debacle in these precincts is that from now on, we just need to plan and execute it better, so that the Good and Just people who cheer these wars on have their noble schemes vindicated a lot sooner and a lot more proficiently.

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Five-figure bonuses stun employees

Stunning. Imagine if all major corporations were this conscientious?

From MSNBC:

CHICAGO - Dave Tiderman wondered if the decimal point was in the wrong place when he opened his $35,000 company bonus. Jose Rojas saw his $10,000 check and thought, "That can't be right."

Valentin Dima watched co-workers breaking down in tears over their bonus checks and didn't trust his emotions. He drove home first, then opened his envelope: $33,000.

Year-end bonuses are rare these days. Rarer still is what the Spungen family, owners of a ball bearings company in Waukegan, Ill., about 40 miles north of Chicago, did as they sold the business.

They gave out whopping thank-you bonuses.

A total of $6.6 million is being shared by just 230 employees of Waukegan-based Peer Bearing Co., with facilities in England and the United States. Amounts varied and were based on years of service.

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One Man’s Military-Industrial-Media Complex

I'm so sick if these lying, thieving, war-profiteering bastards.

From the NY Times:

Through seven years of war an exclusive club has quietly flourished at the intersection of network news and wartime commerce. Its members, mostly retired generals, have had a foot in both camps as influential network military analysts and defense industry rainmakers. It is a deeply opaque world, a place of privileged access to senior government officials, where war commentary can fit hand in glove with undisclosed commercial interests and network executives are sometimes oblivious to possible conflicts of interest.

Few illustrate the submerged complexities of this world better than Barry McCaffrey.

[snip]

Many retired officers hold a perch in the world of military contracting, but General McCaffrey is among a select few who also command platforms in the news media and as government advisers on military matters. These overlapping roles offer them an array of opportunities to advance policy goals as well as business objectives. But with their business ties left undisclosed, it can be difficult for policy makers and the public to fully understand their interests.

On NBC and in other public forums, General McCaffrey has consistently advocated wartime policies and spending priorities that are in line with his corporate interests. But those interests are not described to NBC’s viewers. He is held out as a dispassionate expert, not someone who helps companies win contracts related to the wars he discusses on television.

[snip]

In an article earlier this year, The New York Times identified General McCaffrey as one of some 75 military analysts who were the focus of a Pentagon public relations campaign that is now being examined by the Pentagon’s inspector general, the Government Accountability Office and the Federal Communications Commission. The campaign, begun in 2002 but suspended after the article’s publication, sought to transform the analysts into “surrogates” and “message force multipliers” for the Bush administration, records show. The analysts, many with military industry ties, were wooed in private briefings, showered with talking points and escorted on tours of Iraq and Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.

The Pentagon inspector general is investigating whether special access gave any of these analysts an improper edge in the competition for contracts.

General McCaffrey offers a case study of the benefits that can flow from favored access: an inside track to sensitive information about strategy and tactics; insight into the priorities of ground commanders; a private channel to officials who oversaw war spending, as the Defense Solutions example shows. In that case the company has yet to win the contract it hired General McCaffrey to champion.

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11.29.2008

Ocean currents can power the world, say scientists

Wow. This is really cool.

A revolutionary device can harness energy from slow-moving rivers and ocean currents could provide enough power for the entire world.

The technology can generate electricity in water flowing at a rate of less than one knot - about one mile an hour - meaning it could operate on most waterways and sea beds around the globe.

Existing technologies which use water power, relying on the action of waves, tides or faster currents created by dams, are far more limited in where they can be used, and also cause greater obstructions when they are built in rivers or the sea. Turbines and water mills need an average current of five or six knots to operate efficiently, while most of the earth's currents are slower than three knots.

[snip]

A "field" of cylinders built on the sea bed over a 1km by 1.5km area, and the height of a two-storey house, with a flow of just three knots, could generate enough power for around 100,000 homes. Just a few of the cylinders, stacked in a short ladder, could power an anchored ship or a lighthouse.

Systems could be sited on river beds or suspended in the ocean. The scientists behind the technology, which has been developed in research funded by the US government, say that generating power in this way would potentially cost only around 3.5p per kilowatt hour, compared to about 4.5p for wind energy and between 10p and 31p for solar power. They say the technology would require up to 50 times less ocean acreage than wave power generation.

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Dickipedia: Elisabeth Hasselbeck

More fun from Dickipedia. This time it's the vapid Elisabeth Hasselbeck:

Elisabeth Hasselbeck (née Filarski; born May 28, 1977) is a former reality show contestant—not even the winner, mind you, or even the runner-up—who somehow became co-host of one of the most popular daytime talk shows of all time, and a dick. Though not especially well informed, Hasselbeck is, nonetheless, an irritatingly vocal supporter of conservative viewpoints. Also, she bears a striking resemblance to one of those “It’s a Small World” animatronic robots they have at Disneyland, if those robots were programmed by Sean Hannity.

Elisabeth Hasselbeck is a panelist on The View, the program that pioneered the format of four women jabbering over each other for an hour and a half, interspersed with commercials for Boniva and a special kind of yogurt that promises to regulate your bowels. In this capacity, Hasselbeck’s main duties involve baiting the other panelists to drop the F-bomb on national TV and attaining a level of shrillness that would make most testicles re-ascend. Of course, anyone with external genitalia really has no business watching The View, so it would serve them right.

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Dickipedia: Greta Van Susteren

From Dickipedia:


Greta Van Susteren (born June 11, 1954) is a lawyer turned journalist, journalist turned TV personality, TV personality turned babbling idiot in the presence of a barracuda, and a dick. She is also one of the leading causes of Palinitis, an inflammatory condition in which the sufferer just cannot seem to rid his or her consciousness of a certain northern governor with a penchant for Manolos and moose chili. Symptoms include general irritation, intestinal discomfort, and the sudden urge to go out and buy a pair of rimless glasses. As of yet, no known cure exists.

Greta Van Susteren currently appears on the Fox News Channel. That fact alone is enough to make her a dick. In legal terms, this is referred to as dick ipsa loquitir, or “the dick speaks for itself.”

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Read the rest. It's pretty funny.

Pardon Torturers & Wiretappers, Reward w/ Medal Of Freedom?

This is simply mind-boggling. I'd give almost anything to see someone run this putz run over by a bus.

From Think Progress:

In his new Weekly Standard column, right-wing pundit Bill Kristol lays out a to-do list for President Bush before he leaves office. He urges Bush to deliver speeches “reminding Americans of our successes fighting the war on terror.” Kristol dreams, “Over time, Bush might even get deserved credit for effective conduct of the war on terror.”

After urging Bush to fight the incoming administration’s desire to close Guantanamo, Kristol concludes with this:

One last thing: Bush should consider pardoning–and should at least be vociferously praising–everyone who served in good faith in the war on terror, but whose deeds may now be susceptible to demagogic or politically inspired prosecution by some seeking to score political points. The lawyers can work out if such general or specific preemptive pardons are possible; it may be that the best Bush can or should do is to warn publicly against any such harassment or prosecution. But the idea is this: The CIA agents who waterboarded Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, and the NSA officials who listened in on phone calls from Pakistan, should not have to worry about legal bills or public defamation. In fact, Bush might want to give some of these public servants the Medal of Freedom at the same time he bestows the honor on Generals Petraeus and Odierno. They deserve it.

In the Bush era, the Medal of Freedom has come to absurdly represent a reward for those who carried out policy failures at the urging of the Bush administration. By this standard, the implementers of torture and warrantless wiretapping certainly qualify for such a medal.

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11.28.2008

The Obamas are the Cleavers

Conservative columnist, Katheleen Parker, gets it:

Obama's example could have society-altering effects, especially in the African American community. By his example, he telegraphs the following messages: Being smart is good; education is good; being a good father is essential. Being an egghead is cool.

Conservatives insist, correctly, that culture matters. Many liberals think so, too, by the way. Why, some liberals even stay married their entire lives to the same person and raise children to do the same.

You want Ward Cleaver? Meet Barack Obama. Michelle is June Cleaver with a law degree. Family values don't get more traditional than those of the Obamas, who ooze marital bliss and whose adorable daughters make feminist cynics want to bake cookies and learn to smock.

Though we may perish of boredom, the Obamas may do more to elevate the American family than all the pro-marriage initiatives conceived by those who claim to speak for the deity.

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Chris Matthews Running For Pennsylvania Senate in 2010

UGH.

Chris Matthews, it appears, is in.

FiveThirtyEight has been hearing for some time that Matthews is serious about running for the United States Senate, but it took a trip to Georgia among the Georgia-runoff-congregated and well-connected Obama organizer throng to confirm.

According to multiple sources, who confirmed the Tip O'Neill staffer-cum-MSNBC host has negotiated with veteran Obama staffers to enlist in his campaign, Chris Matthews is likely to run for United States Senate in Pennsylvania in 2010. Matthews, 62, would run as a Democrat. Arlen Specter, the aging Republican incumbent, will be 80 if he chooses to run for re-election.

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UPDATE:
Matthews had denied reports that he's hiring staff for a Senate campain in a statement posted on FiveThirtyEight.com, the site that originally reported the news.
"It is absolutely not true," said Matthews, in a statement.

New White House and Congress Hope to Have Bills Ready by Inauguration

It will be interesting to see how the republican's in the Senate handle the bills coming up for votes right away. It will be pretty clear if they are just acting like obstructionists and that can only hurt them even further in 2010 if they star off this news congress/administration blocking legislation.

From the NY Times:

Democratic Congressional leaders and the nascent Obama administration are moving quickly to assert control over federal policy, aiming to have economic, health and spending legislation waiting on the new president’s desk almost the minute he gets back down Pennsylvania Avenue from the inauguration.

Given the severity of the problems facing the nation, officials on Capitol Hill and in the Obama team say Democrats have put their schedule on fast-forward rather than allowing the usual lull between the start of the new Congress, this time on Jan. 6, and President-elect Barack Obama’s swearing-in two weeks later.

Lawmakers and staff members are already laying the groundwork for a running start, and Congress is scheduled to remain in session once its expanded Democratic majorities are sworn in.

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11.27.2008

Your Weekly Address from the President-Elect Obama

From Barack Obama:

In a preview of his weekly address, President-elect Barack Obama addressed the nation on the occasion of Thanksgiving, nearly one hundred and fifty years after President Lincoln called for the last Thursday in November to be set aside to acknowledge our blessings.

For more information, visit http://change.gov.



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Lieberman Donated to GOPs: Gordon Smith, Peter King

I really hate him:

Five weeks before Jeff Merkley spoke of the Obama spirit of reconciliation during the Senate Democratic caucus meeting that eventually voted 42-13 to allow Joe Lieberman to keep his Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee gavel, Lieberman donated $5,000 to incumbent Oregon GOP Senator Gordon Smith's reelection

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The media myth: Detroit's $70-an-hour autoworker

Media Matters', Eric Boehlert, on the dangerous new right-wing meme that auto-workers are the reason for the auto-industry woes:

It's been one week since New York Times financial columnist Andrew Ross Sorkin wrote that at General Motors, "the average worker was paid about $70 an hour, including health care and pension costs."

The nugget was part of a column in which Sorkin argued that the government should not bail out the ailing Big Three automakers and that they instead should embrace bankruptcy.

[snip]

Somebody at the Times needs to clarify the record, because the average United Auto Workers member is not paid $80 an hour. Or even $70. Not even close. Yet (thanks to the Times?) the issue has become a central talking point in the unfolding national debate about the future of America's automotive industry.

[snip]

Let's note that any suggestion in the press that most UAW workers earn, or are paid, $70 an hour is spectacularly dishonest. Period. (As one Daily Kos diarist pointed out last week, according to the UAW website, the base pay for a worker in a UAW plant is about $28 an hour.)

What that $70 figure (or $73) actually represents is what it costs GM in total labor expenses, on an hourly basis, to manufacture autos.

Do you see that there's a big distinction?...

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Keith Olbermann did a segment on this the other night on Countdown, during his Worst Persons segment:

GM Asks FAA to Bar Public Tracking of Leased Corporate Jet

This is what they're worried about?! Maybe on second thought these fuckers shouldn't get a dime:

Nov. 27 (Bloomberg) -- General Motors Corp., criticized by U.S. lawmakers for its use of corporate jets, asked aviation regulators to block the public’s ability to track a plane it uses.

“We availed ourselves of the option as others do to have the aircraft removed” from a Federal Aviation Administration tracking service, a GM spokesman, Greg Martin, said yesterday in an interview. He declined to discuss why GM made the request.

Flight data show that the leased Gulfstream Aerospace G-IV jet flew Nov. 18 from Detroit to Washington, where Chief Executive Officer Richard Wagoner Jr. spoke to a Senate committee that day and a House panel the next day on behalf of a $25 billion auto-industry rescue plan.

[snip]

An FAA spokeswoman, Laura Brown, said she couldn’t immediately determine whether her agency had granted GM’s flight-privacy request. “We do this routinely” for aircraft owners, she said yesterday. “They don’t have to have a reason” for requesting the block, she said.

The FAA tracking data don’t identify who is aboard the flights.

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17 Reasons To Give Thanks

I'm just thankful 69,000,000 American's (and still counting) -- that's a 7% margin a victory (also still counting) -- didn't allow themselves to be manipulated into being afraid of the socialist, terrorist-sympathizing, latte-drinking, Arugula-eating, Muslim-Manchurian-elitist.

Think Progress has created their annual list of Thanksgiving. Here are some of my favorites:

We’re thankful we’ll soon have a president who will hit the ground running instead of a president who is running the country into the ground.

We’re thankful that Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow are demonstrating every night how strong and intelligent progressive voices can be successful on TV.

We’re thankful we live in a center-left America rather than “Hannity’s America.”

We’re thankful Sarah Palin has more time to watch over Russia and warn us in case Vladimir Putin ever “rears his head.”

We’re thankful for Tina Fey.

We’re more thankful for Vice President Joe Biden and “Morning Joe” than Joe Lieberman and “Joe the Plumber.”

We’re thankful that reality still has a liberal bias.

We’re thankful that there are only 54 days left until the end of the George W. Bush presidency.

We’re thankful for the progressive mandate to govern.

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11.26.2008

Al Qaeda Condemns "Unfair" Pro-Obama Press Bias!

The GOP. Al Qaeda.
Fox "news."
Time's, Mark Halperin.

I'm sensing a pattern!

From Evan Kohlmann over at Counterterrorismblog (voter via HuffPo):

Global reactions to Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri's controversial condemnation of U.S. President-Elect Barack Obama as a "House Slave" (or, alternatively, "House Negro") have begun to pour in -- including via the top jihad web forums used by Al-Qaida to disseminate its propaganda. Though hardcore Al-Qaida supporters have predictably dismissed any criticism of Dr. al-Zawahiri and are fiercely backing his choice of words, there is a rather ironic (if not entirely unfamiliar) twist to this issue. After observing international press reporting on the incident, these same supporters are now bitterly attacking the media for its "unfair" pro-Obama bias and for deliberately "confusing" the meaning of al-Zawahiri's message.

In related news, Zawahiri's audio statement also appears to have created a palpable, tense confrontation between Al-Qaida and a significant cross-section of African-American Muslims. Several U.S.-based Muslim organizations immediately held press conferences or issued statements to strongly criticize al-Zawahiri and his manipulation of the words of the late Malcolm X. Conversely, these conferences and statements of response have not gone over well within the jihadi community, with some Arabic-speaking commentators issuing angry rants about the apparent treachery of American Muslims, including specifically the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). One Al-Qaida supporter cautioned his quarrelsome online colleagues, "Brothers, this does not apply to all American Muslims. Do not forget our brother [Adam] Yehiye Gadahn, a naturalized Muslim and U.S. citizen."

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New, Dark Fox News Ad

And Fox "news" wonders why it's being shut out of Obama's news conferences.

From cheldemedo:

Forget the audacity of hope. Call it the audacity of anger, rage and fear. Fox News wants to drag us back into the darkness. Notice all the explosions, people crying, fires, and the countdown at the end - culminating in yet another explosion. Oh, and the only politicians you see are Democrats.

More at: http://tinyurl.com/6yy8nk

And Fox "news" wonders why it's being shut out of Obama's news conferences.

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Report: Clinton Camp Fabricated Initial Obama "Offer"

This is why the Clinton's should be nowhere near the Obama Administration. It will be just like this for however long Hillary Clinton stays on as SOS, if she get's it.

Mrs. Clinton's and her closest advisers' turning a suggestion by the President-elect that she might, among other things, head the State Department into an "offer" and reports that she was agonizing over whether to accept it, did not please officials in Chicago, some of whom hoped that issues over disclosure of Bill Clinton's post-presidential record might block the appointment.

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Bush's Last Days: The Lamest Duck

Bush's disappearing act during the economic crisis is a fitting coda to a failed presidency

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11.25.2008

Bush Admin Altering Iraq War History on White House Website

Shocking, I tell you. Shocking!

From the NY Times:

WASHINGTON — Before invading Iraq in 2003, the Bush administration mounted a significant diplomatic offensive to rally international support, and officials at the White House, Pentagon and State Department went to great lengths to trumpet those nations that joined what they termed “the coalition of the willing.”

But historians researching those early alliance-building efforts say they are troubled by what seem to be deletions of and alterations to the early official lists of nations that supported the war effort. The lists were posted on the White House Web site.

[snip]

In their study, the two University of Illinois researchers wrote that “whether by design or neglect, the result is the same: The removals and revisions of White House documents distort the historical record of what our government has said and done.” In the new study, the researchers traced five online documents that listed the number and names of coalition partners.

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New York Post: Ann Coulter's Jaw Wired Shut

There is a god! Now, where is the pic??!!

From HuffPo:

Ann Coulter may be completely silenced, at least for a while.

If the New York Post's Page Six report is true, Coulter broke her jaw and her mouth is wired shut:
WE HEAR...THAT although we didn't think it would be possible to silence Ann Coulter, the leggy reaction- ary broke her jaw and the mouth that roared has been wired shut...
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11.24.2008

Lieberman lies: ‘I never felt that Obama was unready."

In an interview with Hartford, CT, local Fox affiliate Fox 61, Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) denied that he had ever suggested that Barack Obama was “not ready to lead.” “I never felt that Barack Obama was ‘unready,’” he told the host. Watch it:

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Report: US spied on Tony Blair, Iraqi president

No one was safe from Bush. Not even his poodle.

From Raw Story:

The National Security Agency spied on British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Iraq's first interim president Ghazi al-Yawer, according to a report Monday.

A former Army Arab linguist at the NSA told ABC News that he saw and read a file on Blair's "private life" and listened to "pillow talk" phone calls of Iraq's first president while working at a secret NSA facility in Georgia.

Last month, David Murfee Faulk and another former military intercept operator assigned to the NSA facility "triggered calls for an investigation when they revealed U.S. intelligence intercepted the private phone calls of American journalists, aid workers and soldiers stationed in Iraq," ABC News' Brian Ross reported Monday morning.

Faulk told the network he saw Blair's file in 2006, but refused to provide details, other than saying it had information about Blair's personal life. Intelligence services and governments sometimes keep files on elected officials -- known as control files -- in order to blackmail or force the hands of governments.

A spokeswoman for Blair had no comment on the report.

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Candidate For RNC Chair Was Member Of Whites-Only Country Club

Does anything these racist fucks, err the GOP leadership does, really surprise anyone anymore?

From Greg Sargent:

Now here's a good way for the GOP to make the case that it hasn't been reduced to a southern regional rump party that's held hostage by intolerant crackpots: Elect as the new chairman of the Republican National Committee a southerner who just resigned a longtime membership in a whites-only country club.

Katon Dawson, the South Carolina GOP chairman, announced his candidacy for RNC chair yesterday.

And guess what: Back in September, when Dawson was first quietly laying the groundwork for his RNC run, The State newspaper reported that he resigned his membership in the nearly 80-year-old Forest Lake Club. Members told the newspaper at the time that the club's deed has a whites-only restriction and has no black members.

Dawson claimed to the paper that he'd actually been working since August to change the club's admission practices after reading about them in the press. Nonetheless, his membership could become an issue in the RNC chair race.

After all, the paper says he was a member for 12 years, so it seems like a pretty fair question to ask whether he started working to change the club's rules this summer, and then resigned, in preparation for his RNC chair candidacy.

That seems like a particularly relevant question when you recall that the case some GOPers made against Obama over his ties to Reverend Wright was that his supposed silence in the face of Wright's rantings should raise questions about Obama's patriotism.

What's more, The State said that Dawson resigned the club after it became known that the paper was getting ready to report his membership.

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Mark Halperin's Claim Of "Pro-Obama" Media is total Bullshit

Greg Mitchell thinks Mark Halperin is a dick, just like most of us do:

The Time.com blogger has gotten a lot of Web attention since Friday when, at a forum in L.A., he called media bias in favor of Obama all year "disgusting," the worst display of media malfeasance since the run-up to the Iraq war (which Halperin himself was a part of, he neglects to say).

Here's Halperin's full quote: "It's the most disgusting failure of people in our business since the Iraq war. It was extreme bias, extreme pro-Obama coverage." Getting much less notice was the response from Mark Barabak, political writer for the L.A. Times, at the same affair: "Look at it in it's totality, at the end of the day did the media serve its function, to inform people about who these two men are? Yes they did."

Much more in a coming post on all this, but for now see what I wrote on this subject recently...

[snip]

It's the old false equivalency problem. In his "disgusting" remarks at the forum, Halperin cited as the most obvious flaw the NYT's late profiles of Cindy McCain and Michelle Obama. Why, the McCain profile was more negative! But, come of think of it, Michelle did not have an affair with Barack while he was married to another, did not steal from her own charity and barely avoid jail, did not become a drug addict, did not lie about the the circumstances of adopting a baby abroad, and so on.

Asked at the forum to name the #1 reason the media boosted Obama, Halperin replied that it was the desire to see him simultaneously "etched in glass" and "on Mount Rushmore."

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One of Our Own

Interesting piece by Newsweek's Ahmed Benchemsi:

The purpose of Al Qaeda's latest video message is to get Muslims to hate Barack Obama. It didn't work.

The video message from Al Qaeda's No. 2, Ayman al-Zawahiri, in which he called Barack Obama a "house Negro," demonstrates, if anything, that the terrorists are always damn good in PR. You feel disgusted? Horrified? That's exactly their aim. In this regard, Zawahiri's diabolical comparison of Obama and Malcolm X ("an honorable American who converted to Islam," as Zawahiri put it) is an even bolder move: not only do they insult the American president-elect, but they rub it into one of America's deepest wounds—the racial divisions and the profound antagonisms generated by Malcolm X's radical claims. In terms of "hatred arts," this is just brilliant. Those who are shocked by Zawahiri's words have merely to remember: spreading hate is the terrorists' job. Hating you is not enough; they also need you to hate them, so the struggle goes on unchallenged.

[snip]

Al Qaeda's true problem with Obama has indeed nothing to do with the color of his skin. By proposing to meet Iran's Ahmadinejad without preconditions instead of just bombing him out, the American president-elect thinks outside of the confrontation box. The radicals just hate that. And above all, they hate the idea of the United States resuming the chase of Al Qaeda operatives in the mountains of the Pakistan-Afghanistan borders. He's coming to them, how could they not react fiercely?

There is something else, which I witness everyday in the streets of Casablanca, where I live: Muslims tend to claim Obama as their own—because he's black, because he comes from an oppressed minority, because his middle name is Hussein. I presume this holds true for all the nonradical Muslims (the vast majority of them) throughout the world. Not that they think Obama is a Muslim himself—he made clear that he was not. Yet he could have been. His father was. Anyway, this man looks like a "brother" to many Muslims, which is indeed a good thing for the prospect of global peace.

Not surprisingly, Zawahiri's video message targeted this specific point: "Obama is not a Muslim, he's a renegade who abandoned his ancestor's religion to embrace the 'crusaders faith' and the 'Zionists' ideology'," Zawahiri suggests. The genuine message being: please don't like him!

Well, too bad for them: we do...

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11.22.2008

Time for Him to Go

It would be funny if it weren't so scarily true.

From the NY Time's Gail Collins:

Thanksgiving is next week, and President Bush could make it a really special holiday by resigning.

Seriously. We have an economy that’s crashing and a vacuum at the top. Bush — who is currently on a trip to Peru to meet with Asian leaders who no longer care what he thinks — hasn’t got the clout, or possibly even the energy, to do anything useful. His most recent contribution to resolving the fiscal crisis was lecturing representatives of the world’s most important economies on the glories of free-market capitalism.

Putting Barack Obama in charge immediately isn’t impossible. Dick Cheney, obviously, would have to quit as well as Bush. In fact, just to be on the safe side, the vice president ought to turn in his resignation first. (We’re desperate, but not crazy.) Then House Speaker Nancy Pelosi would become president until Jan. 20. Obviously, she’d defer to her party’s incoming chief executive, and Barack Obama could begin governing.

As a bonus, the Pelosi presidency would put a woman in the White House this year after all. On the downside, a few right-wing talk-show hosts might succumb to apoplexy. That would, of course, be terrible, but I’m afraid we might have to take the risk in the name of a greater good.

Can I see a show of hands? How many people want George W. out and Barack in?

[snip]

The person who would like this plan least probably would be Barack Obama. Who would want to be saddled with the auto industry’s problems ahead of schedule? The heads of America’s great carmaking corporations are so dim that they couldn’t even survive hearings run by members of Congress who actually wanted to help them. Really, when somebody asks you exactly how much money you need, the answer should not be something along the line of “a whole bunch.”

An instantaneous takeover would also ruin the Obama team’s plan to have the tidiest, best-organized presidential transition in history. Cutting it short and leaping into governing would turn their measured march toward power into a mad scramble. A lot of their Cabinet picks are still working on those 62-page questionnaires.

But while there’s been no drama with Obama, we’ve been living a Technicolor version of “The Perils of Pauline.” Detroit is tied to the railroad tracks and the train is coming! California’s state government is falling into the sea! The way we’re going now, by the time the inauguration rolls around, unemployment will be at 10 percent and the Dow will be at 10.

Time for a change.

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Economy -- Of the People, By the People

Here's this weeks Obama Youtube/radio address. He is vowing to take immediate action upon taking office:

President-elect Barack Obama announces he has directed his economic team to assemble an Economic Recovery Plan that will save or create 2.5 million more jobs by January of 2011.

For more information, visit http://change.gov.


Watch the President-elect's Weekly Address -- then use the form at the right to share your thoughts, questions, or ideas.



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11.21.2008

MSNBC was having far too much with Palin's turkey fiasco

I watched the video live on MSNBC last night and can't believe I didn't catch this!

Check out these screen caps from AmericaBlog. Too funny.

As you may have read, Sarah Palin yesterday gave a press conference in front of a guy slaughtering turkeys, on camera. It's not clear if Palin totally understood what was taking place behind her, especially since she was the place to pardon a Thanksgiving turkey. But either way, the video is hilarious.

Equally hilarious are the breaking news headlines that MSNBC ran while Palin was speaking. These are for real (click the image to see a larger version).




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Sarah Palin Does TV Interview While Turkeys Are Slaughtered

Is Sarah Palin a moron, or what? You betcha!

From HuffPo:

Some videos you just have to see to believe. On Thursday, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin appeared in Wasilla in order to pardon a local turkey in anticipation of Thanksgiving. This proved to be a slightly absurd but ultimately unremarkable event. But what came next was positively surreal. After the pardon Palin proceeded to do an interview with a local TV station while the turkeys were being SLAUGHTERED in the background!! Seemingly oblivious to the gruesomeness going on over her shoulder, she carries on talking for over three minutes. Watch the video below to see for yourself. Be warned, it's kind of gruesome.

This is the UNEDITED (non-blurred) version, so it you're squeamish...



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Daily Kos: Converting Dead Mormons into Homosexuals

RfrancisR has a brilliant idea:

As you know, Mormons have a practice of converting dead people from other religions into Mormons through a practice known as posthumous baptism. Ordinarily, this might just seem a silly act of disrespect towards the individual's personal beliefs and convictions.

However, the Mormons have made an overt effort to posthumously baptize Jewish Holocaust victims. That is not merely silly and disrespectful, that is superfluously offensive. An agreement between Jews and Mormons limited the practice thirteen years ago. But the Mormons returned to the practice recently.

Well, then of course, many of us rightly took offense for the heavy Mormon influence during the Prop 8 vote in California. Well, I decided to kill two birds with one stone. I am converting dead Mormons into homosexuals.

My first Conversion is Joseph Smith.

Dear God of the Homos,

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Poll: GOP image goes from bad to worse

I can't imagine why that is.

From CNN:

Just 34 percent of Americans in a Gallup Poll released Thursday say they have a favorable view of the party, down 40 percent from a month ago, before the election.

What’s worse: 61 percent of Americans have an unfavorable view of the Republican Party.

According to Gallup, that unfavorable rating is the highest the polling organization has recorded for the GOP since the measure was established in 1992.

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11.20.2008

World Leaders Don't Shake Bush's Hand At G20 Summit (VIDEO)

What fucking embarrassment Bush is:

From HuffPo:

It appears in this video that President Bush's approval is in a sorrier state than polls indicate. In a video taken at the G20 summit, Bush walks across a line of world leaders without shaking or being asked to shake any of their hands. Whether the President is being rejected by the world leaders or he is rejecting them, CNN's Rick Sanchez aptly says that Bush looks like "the most unpopular kid in high school that nobody liked."



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Longtime Head of House Energy Panel Is Ousted

HUGE news via the NY Times:

WASHINGTON — Representative Henry A. Waxman wrested the chairmanship of the powerful House Energy and Commerce Committee from Representative John D. Dingell on Thursday in a coup that is expected to accelerate passage of energy, climate and health legislation backed by President-elect Barack Obama.

Mr. Waxman, 69, of California, who mounted a quiet but devastatingly effective two-week campaign against his longtime Democratic colleague, won the chairmanship with a 137-to-122 vote in the Democratic Caucus. The vote was secret, but many allies of Speaker Nancy Pelosi backed Mr. Waxman’s move, and several members said they had voted on the assumption that Ms. Pelosi had tacitly approved.

Democrats also read the signals coming from the president-elect’s transition office, which this week announced the intention to name Philip Schiliro, a longtime aide to Mr. Waxman, as the White House director of Congressional relations.

The takeover marked the fall of a third long-serving member of Congress in the last two weeks. Senator Ted Stevens, 85, Republican of Alaska, lost his re-election bid after a federal fraud conviction. Senator Robert C. Byrd, 91, Democrat of West Virginia, stepped aside as chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee last week.

The ouster of Mr. Dingell, of Michigan, was another blow to the reeling American auto industry, which learned Thursday that it would not get any financial assistance from Congress until it showed how it could be profitable again. Mr. Dingell, who represents a suburban Detroit district, has been the industry’s most stalwart defender in Congress, having slowed or blocked many safety and environmental standards that the auto companies argued they could not meet.

Some in the industry quaked at the ascension of Mr. Waxman, whom they consider an “irrational environmental zealot,” in the words of David Cole, chairman of the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor, Mich.

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Think Progress has more.

Waxman Defeats Dingell, Blue Dogs Get Spanked

Jane Hamsher on Rep. Dingell getting kicked to the curb by Henry Waxman & the Democrats in Congress:

Why, it seems like only yesterday the conservative Blue Dogs were sniffing that the Steering Committee which recommended Waxman were a bunch of unrepentant hippies who didn't reflect the overall makeup of the Democratic caucus. (In fact, it was.)

This is a huge defeat for the Blue Dogs, who have become the primary recipients of the massive corporate donations which used to flow to the Republicans. They were were hoping to use Dingell as a roadblock to keep any meaningful change from happening with regard to issues under the Committee's jurisdiction -- telecommunications and health care, energy and environmental protection, interstate commerce and consumer protection.

Though she never took a public position, nobody has any doubts that Nancy Pelosi orchestrated this.

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11.19.2008

David Corn: "Obama's First Drama: Hillary Clinton"

IF she's SOS, we've got 4 - 8 years of nothing but drama, leaks & lies from the Clinton's.

From David Corn.

I was agnostic on the matter of Hillary Clinton's possible appointment as secretary of state--until last night.

If Barack Obama, the president-elect, wanted to pull a Team of Rivals play, that had seemed fine to me. And placing Clinton in Foggy Bottom would remove her from the dicey business of passing health care reform. Would it unite the party? Well, judging from the election results, the party is pretty darn united already. Despite the griping of a few Hillaryites at the Democratic convention, her voters certainly swung behind Obama in the general election (see Pennsylvania), after HRC and WJC campaigned for BHO in the fall. Unless an explicit deal was made between Obama and Hillary Clinton, it did not seem that Obama, after bypassing her for veep, had to appoint her anything for the party's sake. Still, if Obama and his savvy band of advisers thought that handing her one of the best jobs in the Cabinet would generate political benefits they could use to advance their agenda, I, as a non-fan of Hillary Clinton, was willing to say, okay--for what that was worth.

But then this happened: the presidential transition of no-drama Obama became infected by the never-ending soap opera of the Clintons. And it really is time to turn that program off. There are plenty of policy and political reasons for a progressive not to fancy Hillary. She served on the Wal-Mart board when the mega-firm was fighting unions; she screwed up health care reform for almost a generation; she voted wrong on the Iraq war and then refused to acknowledge she had erred. But, worst of all, as the cliché goes, with the Clintons, it always does seem to be about the Clintons.

[snip]

Bottom-line: if HRC came fuss-free, then maybe there'd be no reason to kick up a fuss about her appointment. Yet that doesn't seem to be what's happening.

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Hunger among U.S. children skyrockets

Some 691,000 children went hungry in America sometime in 2007, while close to one in eight Americans struggled to feed themselves adequately even before this year's sharp economic downturn. Predicted the 2008 numbers will show even more hunger because of the sharp economic downturn this year.

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How America Lost the War on Drugs

This is the best and longest article about drug trafficking ever!If you have plenty of time I really, really recommend it.

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100 Admirals, Generals: Repeal 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — More than 100 retired generals and admirals called Monday for repeal of the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy on gays so they can serve openly, according to a statement obtained by The Associated Press.

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Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) Doesn't Know What "Recession" Means

Devastating new ad from Democratic challenger Jim Martin.



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A Kennedy to Face Lieberman for Reelection?

Regardless of what happens to Lieberman in the secret balloting among his Senate colleagues, it’s unlikely he’ll have the political juice to get reelected in 2012, when he’s next up for reelection. And if he has to face one particular candidate, he could be in serious trouble. And Ted Kennedy Jr. may be gearing up for a fight.

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Dan Rather's Lawsuit Shows Role Of GOP In CBS Witch Hunt

Another memorandum turned over to Mr. Rather’s lawyers by CBS was a long typed list of conservative commentators apparently receiving some preliminary consideration as panel members, including Rush Limbaugh, Matt Drudge, Ann Coulter and Pat Buchanan. At the bottom of that list, someone had scribbled “Roger Ailes,” the founder of Fox News.

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WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily has made a lot of crazy claims over the years, referring to evolution as an "element of witchcraft" and claiming that Obama was once a gay drug addict. Now, they're peddling the myth that Barack Obama was *really* born in Africa, and thus is ineligible to be President.

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Anti-Gay, Anti-Family

The potential implications of a proposed Arkansas law that bans people who are “cohabitating outside a valid marriage” from serving as foster parents or adopting children are terrifying.

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See the hate in your state

Find out what hate organizations reside in your state. Its sad to see that there is still so much hate in the world.

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Valley teen has some big questions

Alaskan Teen on anti-Obama racism at her school

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Obama's Use of Complete Sentences Stirs Controversy

In the first two weeks since the election, President-elect Barack Obama has broken with a tradition established over the past eight years through his controversial use of complete sentences, political observers say.

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NBC Confirms That "Clean Coal" is an Oxymoron

It's about time someone called bull on this sit.

From HuffPo:

It's Green Week at NBC (and all other NBC-Universal properties) and thus we're treated to an extra helping of energy and environment stories from Nightly's globe-trotting, business savvy environment correspondent, Anne Thompson. Tonight's report included some serious straight talk about so-called "clean coal."

Brian Williams began with a remarkable lead-in:
"Coal. While you might have heard the phrase 'clean coal' during the presidential campaign, it's actually an oxymoron. Wishful thinking. Coal does not burn cleanly and it's hugely expensive to make it burn that way..."
And Anne Thompson herself offers an equally honest lead-in:
"Coal: the fuel the world burns to make electricity. Plentiful and polluting. A major contributor to climate change."

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Mormons to get 'South Park' treatment in new Musical

Heh.

From the Independent:

They've tried noisy protests, consumer boycotts, and the odd act of minor terrorism. Now supporters of gay marriage have unveiled a new weapon in their war against the Mormon Church: satire.

The creators of the cartoon South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, are planning to stage a Broadway musical based on the lives and (many) loves of typical members of the Church of the Latter Day Saints.

It will be co-written by the composer Robert Lopez, who wrote Avenue Q, the award-winning musical which sends-up another all-American institution, Sesame Street.

Cheyenne Jackson, an openly-gay Broadway star who appeared in the film United 93, said this week that he has agreed to play the lead role, a Mormon missionary, in the show, which is currently being work-shopped and is slated to open in 2009.

"It's hilarious: very acerbic and biting," he told the New York Post. "It offends everybody, but does what South Park does best, which is [that] by the end it comes around and has something great to say."

Though he didn't reveal details of the plot, or say who else would be starring in the show, Jackson added that it has the working title of Mormon Musical. "I play the main missionary, Elder something," he said.

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Phony wingnut poll promoter gets testy when called out by 538.com's Nate Silver

Nate Silver of 538.com is attacked by right-wing pollster hack for rightfully questioning his most recent poll. And I used the term 'poll' loosely.

From Crooks & Liars:

Nate Silver interviewed John Ziegler, the wingnut who commissioned that falsehood-based poll purporting to demonstrate that Obama voters were stooopid.

Silver's questions, as you can see, are perfectly normal and reasonable, but Ziegler completely loses it. By the end, he's doing a Cheney.

It starts to go downhill when Silver, who know a wee bit about polling, asks a perfectly reasonable question:

NS: Why would you commission a survey question with no correct response?

JZ: The purpose of the question, you pinhead, was we wanted to determine the Tina Fey Effect.

In short order, Ziegler starts attacking Silver over the phone:

NS: Where the interviews conducted by telephone or online?

JZ: How can you ask a question like that and pretend that you have any clue what you're writing about! That's unbelievable that someone could write what you did! That is unbelievable that you wouldn't know that it's a telephone or an online poll and that you went on my summaries of the questions before the questions were even released!

NS: We’ve heard reports from our readers that very similar questions had been asked in an online format. There was no online component at all?

JZ: That is correct, which you would have known if you had looked at the information. Before you called this a push poll -- you don't seem to know the definition of a push poll. How do you have this website?

NS: What did Zogby charge you -- what did you pay for this survey?

JZ: I'm not going to tell you that, I'm not a fucking idiot.

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Paul Krugman Schools George Will On The Great Depression

Paul Krugman rams facts down pontificator to the end, George Will's throat.

From HuffPo:

On ABC's This Week, conservative pundit George Will took up the case against Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal, arguing that it sent confusing signals to capitalists (who apparently might otherwise have pursued lucrative deals in the 1930s market place) and turned a depression into the Great Depression.

Thankfully, Nobel laureate Paul Krugman was around to remind Will of some history -- that the economy improved after the New Deal, and that it was FDR's attempt to balance the budget in 1937 (a move favored now by many conservatives) that then cut into that progress.

On ABC's This Week, conservative pundit George Will took up the case against Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal, arguing that it sent confusing signals to capitalists (who apparently might otherwise have p...
On ABC's This Week, conservative pundit George Will took up the case against Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal, arguing that it sent confusing signals to capitalists (who apparently might otherwise have p...
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11.18.2008

Obama: A New Chapter on Climate Change

From Barack Obama at his new site, Change.gov:

In a short video addressed to the Summit's attendees, President-elect Obama emphasized his enthusiasm for the Poznan Conference and promised that his administration would mark a "new chapter in American leadership on climate change."

Watch the full video of Barack's remarks below, or visit the Global Climate Summit home page to learn more.


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11.17.2008

GQ Names Barack Obama "Man Of The Year"

Cool.

From HuffPo:

GQ has named Barack Obama one if its "Men of the Year" with a cover and article — penned by Senator Ted Kennedy — that went to press before Election Day.



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Expect Obama to move fast on FCC transformation

And Obama's going to overhaul (save) the FCC from itself (and us):

From Ars Technica:

What will a Barack Obama Federal Communications Commission look like? Veteran telecom attorney Andrew Lipman's first advice: don't blink or sneeze while following the Obama transition at the FCC. "This is the fastest I've seen it," Lipman told investors at a briefing on Friday held by Barclays Capital and Bingham McCutcheon.

Lipman has seen a lot of presidential transitions. He has been practicing Telecom, Media, and Technology law for Bingham for 25 years, advocating before the FCC, state regulatory bodies, Congress, and the courts. Lipman's bottom line: With FCC Chair Kevin Martin moving on and his fellow Republican Deborah Taylor Tate termed out when Congress expires, Obama will appoint two, and maybe even three Commissioners relatively soon (Lipman didn't say who the third ship jumper might be).

"We think it's highly likely that Martin will step down if not immediately, then probably in February at the latest after the DTV transition," Lipman predicted—in other words, after the February 17 analog-to-digital switch-off for full power TV stations.

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Obama Wrote Federal Staffers About His Goals

Imagine that. A President who will bring honor and dignity back to government. Wow.

From the WaPo:

Obama Spelled Out Goals in Letters to Federal Employees Pre-Election Missives Addressed Staff At Seven Agencies, Provided Specifics

In wooing federal employee votes on the eve of the election, Barack Obama wrote a series of letters to workers that offer detailed descriptions of how he intends to add muscle to specific government programs, give new power to bureaucrats and roll back some Bush administration policies.

The letters, sent to employees at seven agencies, describe Obama's intention to scale back on contracts to private firms doing government work, to remove censorship from scientific research, and to champion tougher industry regulation to protect workers and the environment. He made it clear that the Department of Housing and Urban Development would have an enhanced role in restoring public confidence in the housing market, shaken because of the ongoing mortgage crisis.

Using more specifics than he did on the campaign trail, Obama said he would add staff to erase the backlog of Social Security disability claims. He said he would help Transportation Security Administration officers obtain the same bargaining rights and workplace protections as other federal workers. He even expressed a desire to protect the Environmental Protection Agency's library system, which the Bush administration tried to eliminate.

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11.16.2008

Blackwater’s Terrifying Reach

Important piece that needs attention. Bottom line: Blackwater must be destroyed.

Blackwater doesn’t need Iraq anymore. It got what it needed from Iraq—a bad-ass reputation and a billion dollars in government contracts.” That’s the assessment of investigative journalist Jeremy Scahill, the leading civilian expert on Blackwater, the controversial private security firm that pops up in the world’s most dangerous areas, from the Green Zone in Baghdad to the streets of post-Katrina New Orleans.

Scahill has followed Blackwater’s trail around the world, even before it made global headlines last September, when its contractors shot dead 17 civilians in Baghdad’s Nisour Square. That massacre shone a spotlight on the private security contractor—along with Scahill, author of Blackwater: The Rise of the World’s Most Powerful Mercenary Army, which was published last spring.

[snip]

“Every aspect of our lives is being increasingly privatized,” Scahill said. “We see the effect of it in Iraq, and if we don’t pay attention and learn from it, we’re doomed to allow it to take complete hold over us here at home.”

Scahill said Zeidler, in contrast, was a firm believer in public support of public institutions. “Zeidler was the antithesis of what Blackwater and the Bush administration stand for,” Scahill said. “Frank Zeidler believed in public institutions, public education, public media, public health care, public parks.”

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Net Neutrality on Deck

There has been a sea change in Washington since then, as the wonks, tech pundits and lobbyists align themselves with new leadership and the likelihood that Net Neutrality could become law soon.

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The Center-Right Myth

We have been hearing pundits saying this is a center-right country on television for the last couple of weeks, despite all available evidence. CNN even did a poll a week after the election to ask people if they wanted the country to head in a Democratic direction. We already had that poll - it was called Election Day!

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Naomi Klein: The New Trough

The Shock Doctrine's, Naomi Klein explains how the present financial crisis is a lot like the endless money pit that is Iraq and why it was meant to be exactly that in her newest piece in Rolling Stone:

Bankers watching bankers, regulators who don't believe in regulating — that's all standard fare for the Bush crew. What's most striking about Jeffery's résumé, however, is an item omitted when his new job was announced: He served as executive director of Paul Bremer's infamous Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad, during the early days of the Iraq War. Part of his job was to hire civilian staff, which made him an integral part of the partisan machine that filled the Green Zone with Young Republicans, investment bankers and Dick Cheney interns. Qualifications weren't a big issue back then, because the staff's main function was to hand over stacks of taxpayer money to private contractors, who were the ones actually running the occupation. It was this nonstop cash conveyor belt that earned the Green Zone a reputation, in the words of one CPA official, as "a free-fraud zone." During Senate hearings last year, when Jeffery was asked what he had learned from his experience at the CPA, he said he thought that contracts should be handed out with more "speed and flexibility" — the same philosophy he cited back when he was in charge of regulating Wall Street traders.

[snip]

In Iraq, the contractors were tasked with reconstructing the country from the mess made by U.S. missiles. After years of corruption born of no-bid contracts and paltry oversight, many Iraqis are still waiting for the lights to come back on. Today, a new team of contractors is lining up to reconstruct the U.S. economy — reconstruct it from the mess made by the very banks, brokers and law firms that are now applying for contracts. And it's not at all clear that America can survive their assistance.

See if any of this sounds familiar: As soon as the bailout was announced, it became clear that Treasury officials would hire outsiders to perform their jobs for them — at a profit. Private companies wanting to help manage the bailout were given just two days to apply for massive, multiyear contracts. Since it was such a mad rush — after all, the entire economy was about to implode — there was no time for an open bidding process. Nor was there time to draft rigorous rules to make sure that those applying don't have serious conflicts of interest. Instead, applicants were asked to disclose their conflicts and to explain — and this is not a joke — their "philosophy in fulfilling your duty to the Treasury and the U.S. taxpayer in light of your proprietary interests and those of other clients." In other words, an open invitation to bullshit about how much they love their country and how they can be trusted to regulate themselves.

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Frank Rich: The Moose Stops Here

Frank Rich is LOL:

ELECTION junkies in acute withdrawal need suffer no longer. Though the exciting Obama-McCain race is over, the cockfight among the losers has only just begun. The conservative crackup may be ugly, but as entertainment, it’s two thumbs up!

Over at Fox News, Greta Van Susteren has been trashing the credibility of her own network’s chief political correspondent, Carl Cameron, for his report on Sarah Palin’s inability to identify Africa as a continent, while Bill O’Reilly valiantly defends Cameron’s honor. At Slate, a post-mortem of conservative intellectuals descended into name-calling, with the writer Ross Douthat of The Atlantic labeling the legal scholar Douglas Kmiec a “useful idiot.”

In an exuberant class by himself is Michael Barone, a ubiquitous conservative commentator who last week said that journalists who trash Palin (more than a few of them conservatives) do so because “she did not abort her Down syndrome baby.” He was being “humorous,” he subsequently explained to Politico, though the joke may be on him. Barone writes for U.S. News & World Report, where his 2008 analyses included keepers like “Just Call Her Sarah ‘Delano’ Palin.” Just call it coincidence, but on Election Day, word spread that the once-weekly U.S. News was downsizing to a monthly — a step closer to the fate of Literary Digest, the weekly magazine that vanished two years after its straw poll predicted an Alf Landon landslide over Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1936.

[snip]

The Republicans did this to themselves, yet a convenient amnesia can be found in conservatives’ post-Election Day soul searching. There’s endless hand-wringing about Bush and McCain blunders and Abramoff-Stevens corruption, but there’s barely any mention of the nasty cultural brawls that defined the G.O.P. campaign narrative this year as the party clung bitterly once more to its 40-year-old “Southern strategy.”

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Bush Book Bomb: Is Anyone Interested in Bush's Memoir?

When Clinton left the White House, publishers scrambled, eventually ponying up $15M for the rights to his memoirs. Obama isn't even president yet, and his memoirs were on the NYT bestseller list for 30 weeks. So why aren't publishers knocking down the door of the man who has, for better or for worse, changed the face of the world, George W. Bush?

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Dorgan: Lieberman’s Actions ‘Unacceptable’ for Committee Chairman

Another Sen. has had enough of Lieberman:

After Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) spoke at the Republican National Convention this summer, Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-ND) expressed his frustration: “Everybody is just profoundly disappointed with what Joe did,” Dorgan said.

Today on Fox News Sunday, host Chris Wallace asked Dorgan whether he would vote on Tuesday to allow Lieberman remain chairman of the Homeland Security Committee. Dorgan said he was “concerned” and “upset” over Lieberman’s behavior during the campaign, and suggested that Lieberman’s actions were unacceptable for a committee chairman:

As a chairman of one of our significant committees in the Senate, not just going off and supporting a presidential candidate of the other side but also criticizing the candidate on our side, and also involving himself in a couple of senate races on the other side. The question is, is that acceptable? The answer is no.

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