Filibusters 'Skyrocketed' since GOP has been in the Minority

The GOP has added a whole new dimension to the meaning of the word, 'obstructionism.'

Via ThinkProgress:

Yesterday, Sen. John Kyl (R-AZ) slammed the idea of passing health care reform and other Obama priorities through a simple majority of the Senate, a process called reconciliation. “Now, if they do that, that, in effect is the nuclear war,” Kyl said. The Republicans have become experts at using Senate filibusters — or often just the threat of filibusters — to block the Democratic agenda while in the minority. As this chart from Norm Ornstein shows, the use of filibusters have skyrocketed under Republicans:

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Republicans Disinvite Palin To Dinner,Trash Her In Private

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is out, and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is in as keynote speaker at a Republican dinner this spring.

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Americans Oppose Non-Existent Threat Of Replacing The Dollar

I love how Rasmussen even polled this. Wishful thinking/self-fulfilling prophecy perhaps?

From TPM:

A new Rasmussen poll finds that Michele Bachmann's new pet issue of preventing Americans from being sucked into a new one-world government currency -- a threat that doesn't actually exist -- could potentially have some real popular appeal.

Keep in mind that this would hardly be the first time that public opinion turned on things that weren't true. It can very often be more important what voters think is being proposed, rather than what is actually going on.

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Bill O'Reilly's 'Ambush Journalism' in 87 seconds

From Crooks & Liars:

In this 87-second clip, we've highlighted many instances where Bill O'Reilly's producers harass and attack journalists, whistleblowers, judges, politicians, and bloggers who do not share Bill O'Reilly's political views or just openly criticize him. It's all about intimidation plain and simple, and the falafel is now out of the bag. David Neiwert calls it "Gobsmacking," but whatever phrase you want to use, it's very ugly and it is a flagrant abuse of media power. Just in case you come in happen to come in contact with O'Reilly's ambush producers, here's:The Complete Guide on How to Deal with Bill O'Reilly's ambush producers Jesse Watters is so proud of his actions that he's compiled a list of some of the people he has ambushed online, called:
Producer's Notebook: Ambushed
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Alaska GOP Senator to Gov Jindal: STFU on Volcano Monitoring

From ThinkProgress:

Bobby Jindal's denunciations of federal spending to monitor volcanoes is now attracting some serious critcism from a Republican Senator -- namely Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, whose state has been recently disrupted by a series of eruptions from Mount Redoubt.

"Recently there were some comments made about federal spending for volcano monitoring being wasteful," Murkowski said from the Senate floor, without naming Jindal directly. "I can assure you that monitoring volcanoes is critically important to the nation and especially to my home state of Alaska."

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Here's the video:


Whenever MSNBC puts on their "political analysts" to tell us how to interpret the news, but exp. when it's racist, xenophobe Pat Buchanan, just change the channe.

Bill O'Reilly Threatens To Not Travel To Spain

First San Francisco, now Spain. Lucky bums...

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Unions Demand Obama Fire Bank of America CEO's Ass

Damn straight. Evey bank that took bailout money that hasn't replaced their CEO should now be forced to fire those CEO's. It should have been part of the original TARP conditions last fall. The very people who helped get us into this mess, or came in in the middle of it and then made things worse, should have their asses handed to them.

From Greg Sargent:

The major unions are grabbing on to the ouster of General Motors chief Rick Wagoner to launch a campaign to pressure the Obama administration to engineer a similar axing of Bank of America CEO Ken Lewis.

The game plan: To capitalize on the odd disparity in treatment of the two industries to intensify populist rage at major corporations. The idea is to make the political environment much tougher for wavering Senators who might want to side with corporations against labor on the Employee Free Choice Act — and, tacitly, to keep up public pressure on the White House to aggressively side with workers in the fight.

Later this morning, Change to Win and SEIU — headed by Andy Stern — will publicly call for Tim Geithner to fire Lewis in an email to its membership:

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O’Reilly is Terrified of ThinkProgress & "their evil deeds”

Why does Bill O'Reilly fear the left so much? And, why does he draw so much attention to us when it only seems to increase our exposure in a positive light?

From ThinkProgress:

Yesterday on The Factor, Bill O’Reilly addressed ThinkProgress in his “Reality Check” portion of the show, “a segment set up to defeat deceit.” And of course, O’Reilly proceeded to peddle deceit, claiming that “far left zealots…attacked a rape victim and her family because they asked me to speak at their fundraiser.” Wrong. We never attacked the Alexa Foundation; we simply highlighted quotes from O’Reilly that were unsympathetic towards a rape victim. O’Reilly has never explained why he implied that women who dress in a certain way or consume too much alcohol should perhaps expect to be raped and murdered. Watch last night’s segment.

O’Reilly also fumed at UPS’s recent decision to stop advertising on The Factor. “Disappointingly, the UPS corporation helped” ThinkProgress “in their evil deed,” O’Reilly whined. “Check is quite surprised. UPS needs to wise up fast.” Or what Bill? Will they be stalked, ambushed, and harassed by your henchmen as well? Please join our campaign.

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ABC/WaPo: Fault Lies With The Financials, Not The President

What was it that they called President Clinton? Teflon Bill?

From DKos' DemFromCT :

We've been following the various and sundry polls that show that Obama is not getting the blame for this financial mess (see CBS and USA Today/Gallup: AIG Is AIG's Fault, Not Obama's), and in our own Daily Kos Research 2000 poll, we've noted the right track/wrong track numbers as a key indicator (it's currently 39/59 right/wrong), along with where the independents are going.

This morning the ABC/WaPo poll affirms those findings. The graphic shows things in a nutshell, with the topline Obama job approval at 66% (MoE +/- 3) and Obama handling of the economy at 60. Michelle's favorability, btw, is at 76.

The number of Americans who believe that the nation is headed in the right direction has roughly tripled since Barack Obama's election, and the public overwhelmingly blames the excesses of the financial industry, rather than the new president, for turmoil in the economy, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

On the economy, the public sees improvement, matching other polls.

Overall perceptions about the country parallel a rapid increase in the percentage of Americans who say the economy is improving. For the first time since late 2004, the gap between the numbers saying the economy is getting better and those saying it's getting worse is in the single digits (27 percent to 36 percent).

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Republicans Pulled A "Hit And Run With Our Economy"

Wow. This is a new hard hitting ad from the Dems. Me like.

From HuffPo:

Touching all the spots still sensitive from the Bush years, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee launched a new online effort on Tuesday pinning the economic malaise squarely on the shoulders of the Republican Party.

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Bush's Torture Rationale Debunked

When you put schoolyard bullies and kids who like to tear wings off of birds in positions of power, this is what you end up with.

From Dan Froomkin:

All the calculations the Bush White House claims to have made in its decision to abandon long-held moral and legal strictures against abusive interrogation turn out to have been profoundly flawed, not just on a moral basis but on a coldly practical one as well.

Indeed, the Post article raises the even further disquieting possibility that intentional cruelty was part of the White House's motive.

The most charitable interpretation at this point of the decision to torture is that it was a well-intentioned overreaction of people under enormous stress whose only interest was in protecting the people of the United States. But there's always been one big problem with that theory: While torture works on TV, knowledgeable intelligence professionals and trained interrogators know that in the real world, it's actually ineffective and even counterproductive. The only thing it's really good as it getting false confessions.

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Palin's AG Pick Called Gays "Degenerate", "Perversions"

Gov. Sarah Palin named Anchorage lawyer Wayne Anthony Ross as her new attorney general on Thursday. We did not expect her to pick a gay-friendly AG, however his blatant prejudice expressed in a public letter to the state Bar shows that he is a poor choice for our top attorney.

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Sen. Jim Webb Says Drug Legalization Is A Serious Option

"It's a very real question," he said, noting that the past three presidents and more than half of Americans have used illegal drugs at some point in their lifetimes. It's a legitimate question," he said, one that could be studied by a new blue ribbon commission he is trying to create.

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Women's Right to Vote, the Beginning of the End for America?

This usually doesn't that happen often to me, but I'm speechless. Go read this piece.

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Beck: ‘If you take what I say as gospel, you’re an idiot."

So, the idiot is calling the people who watch him, idiots? Rich. What's even funnier, is he's also calling himself an idiot because it's obvious to anyone with half a brain, he believes his own bullshit.

From ThinkProgress:

Today, the New York Times has a front-page article on the success of Glenn Beck’s Fox News show. According to the Times, Beck has become “one of the most powerful media voices for the nation’s conservative populist anger.” Although he says he believes every word he says, he doesn’t think smart people should actually listen to him:

Mr. Beck says he believes every word he says on his TV show, and the radio show that he still hosts from 9 a.m. to noon each weekday. […]

At the same time, though, he says he is an entertainer. “I’m a rodeo clown,” he said in an interview, adding with a coy smile, “It takes great skill.” […]

He added later: “I say on the air all time, ‘if you take what I say as gospel, you’re an idiot.’

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Ann Coulter bushwacked on radio by Christian abortion foes

Ultra-conservative Christian talk-radio hosts are taking a new approach to get their message out — ambushing right-wing pundit Ann Coulter for supporting 2008 GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Absolutist anti-abortion activists accuse Romney of being “willing to sacrifice children for your vote.”Listen to Coulter's on-air meltdowns.

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Five Steps to Fix the U.S. Department of Justice

Eric Holder faces a daunting task. [] Much of the work to be done involves restoring a commitment to justice that disappeared in a sea of partisan political intrigue over the last eight years, in which three different men served nominally as attorney general while the department was run in fact out of the office of Karl Rove in the White House....

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O’Reilly LIES: I ‘Contacted That Website’ Before Harassment

Poor Billo. He just can't keep his stories straight. The pressure must be getting to him if he's already out trying to rewrite the history of his despicable behavior.

From Think Progress:

In a new interview with Broadcasting & Cable, O’Reilly defends sending his producer to harass me on March 21. Specifically, he says that he contacted our “website” beforehand, but received no response. He also says that I clearly wasn’t disturbed by the incident because I didn’t “look threatened” in the video that Fox aired:

Neither I nor anyone else at ThinkProgress ever received any sort of request from anyone at Fox News. O’Reilly’s producers did ask CAP CEO John Podesta to appear on his show — after his ambush of me. They then had no problem finding the phone number of the appropriate people to contact at our organization; why wasn’t I extended the same courtesy, if they were legitimately interested getting a response from me?

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Fox News' Mentally Unstable, Conspiracy Theorist, Glenn Beck

This lunatic should be in a padded cell. Seeing as one wasn't available, Fox was next best I guess. FEMA concentration camps? Take your fucking meds, Glenn!

From the NY Times:

Mr. Beck says he believes every word he says on his TV show, and the radio show that he still hosts from 9 a.m. to noon each weekday.

He says that America is “on the road to socialism” and that “God and religion are under attack in the U.S.” He recently wondered aloud whether FEMA was setting up concentration camps, calling it a rumor that he was unable to debunk.

At the same time, though, he says he is an entertainer. “I’m a rodeo clown,” he said in an interview, adding with a coy smile, “It takes great skill.”

And like a rodeo clown, Mr. Beck incites critics to attack by dancing in front of them.

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O'Reilly claims show had 'a few people convicted of crimes'

Is Fox News host Bill O'Reilly feeling the heat from a liberal campaign against his alleged "ambush journalism" and now trying to attract sympathy as a martyr?

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Spanish Human Rights Laywer to Feith: Hire Very Good Lawyers

Personally, I wouldn't leave the country. if I worked for Bush/Cheney:

From ThinkProgress:

Last week, a Spanish court agreed to consider “opening a criminal case against six former Bush administration officials…over allegations they gave legal cover for torture at Guantanamo Bay.” Former Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Doug Feith said the charges “make no sense,” adding, “they criticize me for promoting a controversial position that I never advocated.” Gonzalo Boye, one of the lawyers filing the complaint, responded to Feith, saying, “If they [Bush officials] are innocent, they shouldn’t be afraid” to come to court:

“I would recommend that Mr. Feith first of all read the complaint, and secondly that he get a very good lawyer,” Boye said. “If he is so sure of what he is saying — then the address of the national court is #22 Genova Street, second floor.”

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Catholics Similar to Mainstream on Abortion, Stem Cells

This one was a shocker. Evidently the Prada wearing, Nazi Pope in Rome doesn't understand it's American flock as much as he thinks. And neither do some raving American Bishops.

From Gallup:

Despite the Roman Catholic Church's official opposition to abortion and embryonic stem-cell research, a Gallup analysis finds almost no difference between rank-and-file American Catholics and American non-Catholics in terms of finding the two issues morally acceptable.

The argument of those who protest the extension of the invitation to Obama is that Catholics have a distinctly conservative position on these moral issues. That is certainly the case as far as official church doctrine is concerned, but not when it comes to average American Catholics. The new Gallup analysis, based on aggregated data from Gallup's 2006-2008 Values and Beliefs surveys, indicates that Catholics in the United States today are actually more liberal than the non-Catholic population on a number of moral issues, and on others, Catholics have generally the same attitudes.

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Virginia Dems Allow Stem Cell Research Ban To Pass!

Stunningly stupid. If Tim Kaine doesn't veto this bill, President Obama must replace his ass at the DNC immediately.

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Obamas Paying for White House Renovations Personally

Do as I do:

At a time when people are having trouble holding on to their houses, Barack and Michelle Obama have sensibly decided not to use taxpayers’ money to renovate theirs. New presidents are allotted $100,000 to overhaul the White House residence and the Oval Office, and the Obamas hired Hollywood decorator Michael S. Smith (known, per his site, for mixing “Old World classicism with very contemporary settings”). But the First Couple isn’t spending that money. They “are not using public funds or accepting donations of goods for redecorating their private quarters,” says Camille Johnston, director of communications for the First Lady. Nor is the couple, who reported $4.2 million in household income in 2007 tax returns, using money from the White House Historical Association, a privately funded foundation that paid for a $74,000 set of china shortly before Laura Bush left town.

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The Teleprompter President

"We cannot ignore this any longer. If, God forbid, Barack Obama someday has to stand on a pile of rubble and inspire the country, there isn't going to be a teleprompter waiting for him."
Oh, Barb (inMD)!

It can't be denied anymore. Barack Obama is the "teleprompter President." While we on the left have marveled at Obama's oratorical skills since he burst on the scene at the 2004 Democratic Convention, those on the right have long derided him, saying that without the teleprompter, he's an empty suit.

And while it's a criticism that may have begun from the far right, now even the traditional media has realized that there's a story here.


As painful as it may be to admit, it can't be denied that having a president who relies so heavily on an electronic crutch is an issue.


We cannot ignore this any longer. If, God forbid, Barack Obama someday has to stand on a pile of rubble and inspire the country, there isn't going to be a teleprompter waiting for him.

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No! And, you can't make me!

Never has anyone in American political punditry been so wrong about so many thing of such monumental importance and gotten away with it like this putz has.

He should be water boarded by Jon Stewart on the Daily Show and then forced to diffuse and I.E.D on Stephen Colbert.


On Friday, the Weekly Standard’s Bill Kristol appeared on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal. A caller criticized his publication for hyping President Bush’s pre-invasion lies about WMD in Iraq, and asked him to apologize to the American public. Kristol refused, saying that the war has been a smashing success:

CALLER: All of y’all hyped that to a degree that was just unimaginable. Even President Bush admitted there were no weapons of mass destruction there. In lieu of that fact — being the fact that there are 4,500 American lives lost there — will you personally apologize to those folks right now? Simple yes or no. Thank you.

KRISTOL: No. I think the war was right, and I think we’ve succeeded in the war. And I think those lives — we should honor those soldiers who gave
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O'Reilly Ambushes Journalist and Gets Ambushed Back

The Nation has more on the Bill O'Reilly stalking/harassment against female ThinkProgress blogger, Amanda Terkel:

After ThinkProgress.org's managing editor Amanda Terkel wrote a blog entry critical of Fox News anchor Bill O'Reilly, the bloviator-in-chief sent a producer, Jesse Watters, to stalk Terkel.

It was a standard O'Reilly stunt, referred to as "ambush journalism." The TV tough guy's gone after dozens of targets using this technique.

But Terkel pushed back. She wrote about the incident in an article headlined "I Was Followed, Harassed, And Ambushed By Bill O'Reilly's Producer."

Then the Center for American Progress (CAP) used their Action Fund to launched a "Stop Supporting The O'Reilly Harassment Machine" campaign that urged Americans to: "Tell O'Reilly's advertisers that you want them to issue a clear statement explaining their opposition to O'Reilly's 'ambush journalism.'" The response has been overwhelming, from viewers and others who were sick of ambush "journalism."

And the campaign seems to be working...

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Krugman, Newsweek & the Beltway's Ironic Twist of Hypocrisy

As usual, Media Matters hits the nail on the pinheads' heads when it comes to their blatant double standards:

Looking back on the Bush years, Krugman's track record was rather impeccable. But you'll note he didn't appear on the cover of Newsweek back then. (No "Bush is Wrong" cover lines.) And for years Krugman only occasionally appeared on the pundit talk shows. He wasn't referenced much inside The Village, either. Meaning, the Beltway press pros didn't seem to care what Krugman wrote about Bush and didn't think his writing--his opposition--needed to be examined closer. He was just a liberal critic, so who cared what he wrote about Bush. (That's my take on how much of the press viewed Krugman.)

But now a Democrat is in the Oval Office, Krugman is still hitting the president from the left, and suddenly the Beltway press thinks Krugman's work is fascinating and newsworthy. Trust us, it is. (For years he's been our pick as the country's premier columnist.) We just think everyone would have been better off if the press had paid this much attention to Krugman's work between, say, 2002 and 2006.

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McCain Refuses to Back Palin in 2012: Let's See Who Else Runs

And what about Mittens?

From HuffPo:

Sen. John McCain isn't committing to supporting his vice presidential pick, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, if she runs for president in 2012.

McCain -- the GOP's presidential nominee last year -- says he wants to see who the other candidates are and what the situation might be.

The Arizona senator elevated Palin to the national stage with his surprise pick. He says he has great affection for Palin and her family. But he also cites three other governors -- Utah's Jon Huntsman, Louisiana's Bobby Jindal and Minnesota's Tim Pawlenty as potential candidates.

McCain joked he was going to get himself in trouble for forgetting a name.

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Democracy Corps: Republicans Irrelevant to Young Americans

Great news for us. Terrible news for them. I can live with that.

From Future Majority:

We're running out of ways to say it. But some poll results released by Democracy Corps this week yield perilous signs for the GOP's relevance to today's youth. The poll analysis diagnoses the problem.

Republicans struggle among young people for a very specific reason. At a time when young people are paying close attention to politics and when so many are struggling economically, even more so than older generations, the Republicans simply do not speak to the reality of their lives or to the issues important to them. This perception stands in marked contrast to their reaction to Barack Obama. Nationally, voters’ opinion of the President may have cooled slightly—and inevitably—in recent weeks, but among younger voters, he has never been more popular. They strongly support his economic policy and are confident that he will make a difference in their lives.

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Exec says Coleman donor ordered $100K payments

Why is it that Democrats can uniformly come out against the corruption of Rod Blagojevich, but not a word is uttered about Coleman from the rethugs? It's no different when it comes to things like filibuster threats, on 'reconscialion' as a means to get agenda push through congress. When rethugs use the tactics it's fine, when Dem talk of using it, Rethugs freak and conservadems run to their sides in order to pacify.

It's sickening.

From the Satr Tribune:

Sworn statement backs allegation that Kazeminy directed fees to an insurance firm to benefit the Colemans.

The former finance chief of a Texas company controlled by Nasser Kazeminy, a close friend of former Sen. Norm Coleman, said in a deposition last week that Kazeminy ordered $100,000 in fees be paid to a Minneapolis insurance agency where Coleman's wife was employed.

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RNC Chair Michael Steele's Narcissism Knows No Bounds

Look at me! Look at me! It's all about me! Me! Me! Me! Me! Me! Me! Me! Me! Me! And, for fucks sake…No more electing President’s because they said God told them to run!!!

From HuffPo:

RNC Chairman Michael Steele said he is "done" reaching out to the president, having apparently been rebuffed in his previous attempts to start a dialogue. In an interview with CNN that aired over the weekend, the Maryland Republican said he could detect no bipartisanship coming from the White House, stating that Barack Obama "has got a little thing about me that I haven't quite figured out."

The remarks were a new installment in yet another bizarre interview given by the Republican National Committee chair. As aired earlier, Steele told CNN that he would contemplate a president run if God told him the time was right. He also claimed to have strategically planned his squabble with Rush Limbaugh, in which he called the radio talk show host's work incendiary and ugly.

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Video via NewsPoliticsNews:

Jealous bitch.

Open Letter to Alaskan Rep Mike Doogan

Democrat or not, don't fuck with bloggers, Sir.

From DKos' Jennifer Bruenjes (a/k/a the formerly anonymous "Scout Finch"):

This country has long prided itself on the principle of freedom of speech. Writing anonymously about the affairs of our government is as old a tradition--or arguably even older--as our government itself. And the ability to speak freely without fear of retribution is as entrenched in our society as deeply as apple pie and fireworks on the Fourth of July.

So, imagine my surprise to discover this morning that you have taken it upon yourself to "out" the increasingly well-known Alaskan blogger known simply as AKMuckraker at the blog mudflats. From your newsletter:

Anonymous Blogger Anonymous No More

The identity of the person who writes the liberal Democratic Mudflats blog has been secret since the blog began, protected by the Anchorage Daily News, among others. My own theory about the public process is you can say what you want, as long as you are willing to stand behind it using your real name. So I was interested to learn that the woman who writes the blog is Anchorage resident _______.*

Best wishes,


Whatever your reasoning, you've certainly caught our attention. And if you think we are going to scuttle back into the shadows and let this pass, you've got another thing coming. Your petty, vindictive, unprofessional, unethical, and perhaps even illegal actions are certain to come back to haunt you. The drumbeat for a 2010 primary opponent has already begun. You can bet your last frozen dollar your next opponent will have support far and wide -- from across Alaska and well beyond. Of course, given the possible legal ramifications of your actions, getting re-elected next year may well be the least of your concerns.

Jennifer Bruenjes
a/k/a the formerly anonymous "Scout Finch"

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Jonathan Alter: Obama Caught In the Act of Thinking

Imagine that? President Obama meant what he said. Education. Energy. Healtcare. They're all being overhauled recession or not.

From Jonathan Alter:

But if the public wasn't gambling last fall (John McCain was arguably the riskier choice), the president is now. Obama is tripling down, wagering not just that his recovery plan will work but that he can simultaneously dent three huge problems (not fix, dent) that keep getting worse. He's telling the people exactly what to expect from him for the duration of his presidency. He's insisting that repairing the nation's "foundation" begins right now, in this year's budget. And he's set himself up for failure if he doesn't bring big changes in our new policy trinity of Health, Energy and Education, or what I lamely think of as HEE-HEE (constant repetition being necessary for the priorities to sink in).


Washington isn't bored by Obama; it's dazed and confused by him. I was on Capitol Hill in early March on the day the president's proposed budget came out. It was as though an IED had hit the place. Congressional aides asked each other in amazement, Did you read the thing? (They didn't mean actually read it. Nobody has time to read a big bill beyond the cheat sheets.) Can you believe it? The guy is trying to do what he said he would! This counts as heresy in a capital conditioned to believe that campaign promises are, in Ron Ziegler's immortal argot, "inoperative" on the day after the election. Last week a Democratic senator told me with a mixture of awe and worry that "every time I think he's gonna step on the brake, he hits the gas."

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Syria's Assad Emails Seymour Hersh To Describe His Hopes

Bush/DICK never wanted peace. They wanted us (& Israel) to remain in a constant state of war or high alert. It was the only way for the neo-cons' to maintain control and for their KBRs & Blackwaters to remain relevant (and profitable).

Elections do have consequences though.

From Seymour Hersh:

When the Israelis’ controversial twenty-two-day military campaign in Gaza ended, on January 18th, it also seemed to end the promising peace talks between Israel and Syria...

... a few days after the Israeli ceasefire in Gaza, Assad said in an e-mail to me that although Israel was “doing everything possible to undermine the prospects for peace,” he was still very interested in closing the deal. “We have to wait a little while to see how things will evolve and how the situation will change,” Assad said. “We still believe that we need to conclude a serious dialogue to lead us to peace.”


President Assad was full of confidence and was impatiently anticipating the new Administration in Washington when I spoke to him late last year in Damascus.


Sheikh Hamid bin Khalifa al-Thani, the ruler of Qatar, said last month when I saw him in Doha that Assad must take any reasonable steps he can to keep the talks going. “Syria is eager to engage with the West,” he said, “an eagerness that was never perceived by the Bush White House. Anything is possible, as long as peace is being pursued.”

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DICK Lied: Torturing High-Value Terrorists Foiled No Plots

Wow. Dick Lied! What a shock. But we all knew that already, didn't we? Even after they realized all the terror leads were bullshit, DICK & his pet George were out here calming they saved the world numerous times. DICK even made that claim a few weeks ago when CNN's John King was blowing live on the air.

From the Washington Post:

When CIA officials subjected their first high-value captive, Abu Zubaida, to waterboarding and other harsh interrogation methods, they were convinced that they had in their custody an al-Qaeda leader who knew details of operations yet to be unleashed, and they were facing increasing pressure from the White House to get those secrets out of him.

The methods succeeded in breaking him, and the stories he told of al-Qaeda terrorism plots sent CIA officers around the globe chasing leads.

In the end, though, not a single significant plot was foiled as a result of Abu Zubaida's tortured confessions, according to former senior government officials who closely followed the interrogations. Nearly all of the leads attained through the harsh measures quickly evaporated, while most of the useful information from Abu Zubaida -- chiefly names of al-Qaeda members and associates -- was obtained before waterboarding was introduced, they said.


Moreover, within weeks of his capture, U.S. officials had gained evidence that made clear they had misjudged Abu Zubaida. President George W. Bush had publicly described him as "al-Qaeda's chief of operations," and other top officials called him a "trusted associate" of al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and a major figure in the planning of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. None of that was accurate, the new evidence showed."


"Abu Zubaida's revelations triggered a series of alerts and sent hundreds of CIA and FBI investigators scurrying in pursuit of phantoms. The interrogations led directly to the arrest of Jose Padilla, the man Abu Zubaida identified as heading an effort to explode a radiological "dirty bomb" in an American city. Padilla was held in a naval brig for 3 1/2 years on the allegation but was never charged in any such plot. Every other lead ultimately dissolved into smoke and shadow, according to high-ranking former U.S. officials with access to classified reports.

"We spent millions of dollars chasing false alarms," one former intelligence official said."

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This isn't about who is or isn't our real enemy, but how torturing our enemies not only got bullshit intelligence (that led to one false alarm after another AND was still being used as recently as three weeks ago by Cheney as proof they got intelligence that have prevented new attacks), but which made us less safe as it created more terrorists.

Their propaganda that their tactics stopped attacks on the homeland, was a lie that MOST of us already knew.


Election do have consequences: US and Iran open Afghanistan peace talks

From the UK Times Online:

IRANIAN and American officials have held their first talks about ending the war in Afghanistan amid signs that President Barack Obama’s efforts to thaw relations with Tehran are paying off.

While television cameras focused on Obama in Washington during the unveiling of his strategy for Afghanistan last Friday, US and Iranian diplomats were holding a remarkable meeting in Moscow.

The Russian initiative brought together Patrick Moon, the US diplomat in charge of south and central Asia, and Mehdi Akhundzadeh, Iran’s deputy foreign minister, as well as a British diplomat who has been acting as a mediator.

“We’ve turned a page to have Iranians and Americans at the same table all discussing Afghanistan,” Sergei Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister, told delegates...

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Jabba the Rush

From Current TV:

Conservatives kneel before the almighty Rush Limbaugh to beg forgiveness. From SuperNews!, an animated sketch comedy series airing on Current TV every Friday night at 10PM E/P. So set your DVR's and TIVO's. Like...now. For more SuperNews! go to www.current.com/supernews.

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Jim Webb's Courage v. the "Pragmatism" Excuse of Politicians

Glenn Greenwald's latest piece on the marijuana debate and how President Obama drowned in political pragmatism while Sen. Webb is taking a stand:

Political leaders have a far greater ability to change public opinion than they want people to believe they have.

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NY Times: Spanish Court Weighs Inquiry on Torture for 6 Bush Officials

NY Times has the story as well. It's a big deal. The dominoes are beginning to fall and the Obama administration isn't going to be allowed to just gloss it over just to avoid the hard choice of prosecuting Bush/Cheney for war crimes:

A high-level Spanish court has taken the first steps toward opening a criminal investigation against six former Bush administration officials, including former Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales, on whether they violated international law by providing a legalistic framework to justify the use of torture of prisoners at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, an official close to the case said.

The case was sent to the prosecutor’s office for review by Baltasar Garzón, the crusading investigative judge who ordered the arrest of the former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet. The official said that it was “highly probable” that the case would go forward and that it could lead to arrest warrants.

The move represents a step toward ascertaining the legal accountability of top Bush administration officials for allegations of torture and mistreatment of prisoners in the campaign against terrorism. But some American experts said that even if warrants were issued their significance could be more symbolic than practical, and that it was a near certainty that the warrants would not lead to arrests if the officials did not leave the United States.

The complaint under review also names John C. Yoo, the former Justice Department lawyer who wrote secret legal opinions saying the president had the authority to circumvent the Geneva Conventions, and Douglas J. Feith, the former under secretary of defense for policy.

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Nation's Only State-Owned Bank is the Envy of Wall Street

The Bank of North Dakota is the only state-owned bank in the nation. It also earned record profits last year, showing that "socialized" banks can actually out-compete the likes of BofA and Wachovia. Mother Jones interviews the bank's president, who says the socialism label has "been thrown at me many times" but that now he's getting the last laugh.

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Olbermann provides the latest on OReilly's troubles with UPS

From ThinkProgress:

Last night on MSNBC’s Countdown, host Keith Olbermann discussed our Stop Supporting The O’Reilly Harassment Machine campaign. “Tonight begins the comeuppance,” Olbermann said in awarding Bill O’Reilly his “Worst Person in the World” honor:

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Spain may undertake criminal probe of Bush 'torture lawyers'

I've said it numerous times: If we don't clean up our mess properly, other countries will do it for us.

Six Bush-era officials responsible for crafting the legal justifications permitting the military prison at Guantanamo Bay are the subject of a potential Spanish criminal probe which could place the men under serious risk of arrest if they travel outside the United States.

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Is Jon Stewart Our Ed Murrow? Maybe...

From The Nation's Eric Alterman:

It's a sad--almost terrifying--comment on the state of the American media that we have come to rely on these two funnymen to tell us the truth about our country in the same way we relied on Murrow in the '50s and Walter Cronkite in the '60s. But as the mainstream media keep reminding us, albeit unintentionally, the MSM's groupthink is invulnerable to reality. Like the president who remained so popular with them for so long, it literally takes a hurricane and a biblical-style flood to get them to pay attention to events that do not conform to the agreed-upon national narrative.


Stewart and Colbert have done yeoman work for the rest of us by exposing the thoughtlessness of the punditocracy's perpetual-motion machine, which spins itself silly powered only by hot air. But the problem goes far deeper. We may have elected a liberal Democratic president and Democratic Congress, but our discourse remains rooted in hardline conservative assumptions. That means the Obama administration--in Iraq, in Afghanistan and regarding so much of its domestic agenda--is constricted by homilies that make sense inside the conference rooms of Heritage and AEI but enjoy precious little relevance to life as it is actually lived by most Americans. Yet survey after survey demonstrates that the majority of people reject these ideological assumptions and embrace a far more pragmatic approach to problem solving, which goes by the name "liberalism."

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Your Weekly Youtube-Radio Presidential Address (3/28/09)

From WhiteHouse.gov:

The President addresses the people of North Dakota, South Dakota, and Minnesota as they face down disastrous flooding. He speaks of what the government is doing, but also stresses that times of crisis like this are reminders of the need and opportunity Americans have to keep their dedication to service.

Even as we face an economic crisis which demands our constant focus, forces of nature can also intervene in ways that create other crises to which we must respond – and respond urgently. For the people of North and South Dakota and Minnesota who live along rivers spilling over their banks, this is one such moment.

Rivers and streams throughout the region have flooded or are at risk of flooding. The cities of Fargo and neighboring Moorhead are vulnerable as the waters of the Red River have risen. Thousands of homes and businesses are threatened.

That is why, on Tuesday, I granted a major disaster declaration request for the State of North Dakota and ordered federal support into the region to help state and local officials respond to the flooding. This was followed by an emergency declaration for the State of Minnesota. And we are also keeping close watch on the situation in South Dakota as it develops.

The Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency continue to coordinate the federal response. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is helping to oversee federal efforts and she remains in close contact with state officials. Acting FEMA administrator Nancy Ward has been in the region since yesterday to meet with folks on the ground and survey the area herself.

In addition, The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is assisting in the emergency construction of levees. The Coast Guard is aiding in search and rescue efforts while the Department of Defense is helping to move people and supplies. Members of the National Guard have been activated and are on the scene as well.

Hospitals and nursing homes in the area are being evacuated and residents in poor health or with special needs are being transported to higher ground. Teams from the Department of Health and Human Services are aiding in this work. And the Red Cross is in place to provide shelter and supplies for folks in need.

It is also important for residents in these states to remain vigilant in monitoring reports on flood crests and to follow instructions from their state and local leaders in the event that evacuations become necessary.

My administration is working closely with Governors John Hoeven, Mike Rounds and Tim Pawlenty. And I’ve been meeting with Senators Byron Dorgan, Kent Conrad, and Amy Klobuchar, as well as Congressmen Earl Pomeroy and Collin Peterson, to pledge my support. I will continue to monitor the situation carefully. We will do what must be done to help in concert with state and local agencies and non-profit organizations – and volunteers who are doing so much to aid the response effort.

For at moments like these, we are reminded of the power of nature to disrupt lives and endanger communities. But we are also reminded of the power of individuals to make a difference.

In the Fargodome, thousands of people gathered not to watch a football game or a rodeo, but to fill sandbags. Volunteers filled 2.5 million of them in just five days, working against the clock, day and night, with tired arms and aching backs. Others braved freezing temperatures, gusting winds, and falling snow to build levees along the river’s banks to help protect against waters that have exceeded record levels.

College students have traveled by the busload from nearby campuses to lend a hand during their spring breaks. Students from local high schools asked if they could take time to participate. Young people have turned social networks into community networks, coordinating with one another online to figure out how best to help.

In the face of an incredible challenge, the people of these communities have rallied in support of one another. And their service isn’t just inspirational – it’s integral to our response.

It’s also a reminder of what we can achieve when Americans come together to serve their communities. All across the nation, there are men, women and young people who have answered that call, and millions of other who would like to. Whether it’s helping to reduce the energy we use, cleaning up a neighborhood park, tutoring in a local school, or volunteering in countless other ways, individual citizens can make a big difference.

That is why I’m so happy that legislation passed the Senate this week and the House last week to provide more opportunities for Americans to serve their communities and the country.

The bipartisan Senate bill was sponsored by Senator Orrin Hatch and Senator Ted Kennedy, a leader who embodies the spirit of public service, and I am looking forward to signing this important measure into law.

In facing sudden crises or more stubborn challenges, the truth is we are all in this together – as neighbors and fellow citizens. That is what brought so many to help in North Dakota and Minnesota and other areas affected by this flooding. That is what draws people to volunteer in so many ways, serving our country here and on distant shores.

Our thanks go to them today, and to all who are working day and night to deal with the disaster. We send them our thoughts, our prayers, and our continued assistance in this difficult time.

Thank you.

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Why Michelle Malkin Ought to Be Caged Like a Rabid Shih-Tzu (Rank Hypocrisy Edition)

I didn't even realized she was still around anymore. I forgot all about her. I guess she doesn't want to be outdone by Glenn Beck & Michele Bachmann.

From the Rude Pundit:

So let's just get this straight: back in 2006, Michelle Malkin, blogger, syndicated columnist, and an attention whore with appetites so huge that, if she were a sex-selling whore (and the Rude Pundit has no direct knowledge that she is not), she'd be in front of an audience of cheering old drunks, giving handjobs to hobos while getting fucked in the ass by the bartender's pit bull, which is pretty much what happens when you appear on Fox "news," posts to her blog the names, phone numbers, and email addresses of three UC Santa Cruz students who led a protest against military recruiters on their campus. When the students get pounded by threats of violence, Malkin washes her hands of it, saying that it's up to individuals how they respond to the information she has made public...

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Is she even able to make a living 'writing' anymore? Someone still pays her an actual salary for it? Really?

Charles Blow: Steele Ridiculous

It's gotta be a mild stroke. The only one in the GOP that's this delusional is Glenn Beck and even I wouldn't' wish that kind of crazy on Steele.

From the NY Times' Charles Blow:

Michael Steele is the gift that keeps on giving. His latest entrée unto the absurd comes in the form of an interview with CNN’s Don Lemon. Steele now wants us to believe that his wayward ramblings are part of an elaborate ruse – some sort of Jedi mind trick. Really?

He’s either completely deluded or suffering from a mild stroke.

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Keith Olbermann vs. Rep. Michele Bachmann & "Revolution"

Keith Olbermann pummels Minnesota Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann & her "Revolution" comments with Newsweek Editor, Jonathan Alter on last night's Countdown:

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Michelle Bachmann Is Insane

Andrew Sullivan declares Michel Bachmann insane:

It's official now, along with Glenn Beck's derangement. Is no one on the right prepared to take this stuff on?

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Hilarious Matt Taibbi On Michele Bachmann [VIDEO]

Matt Taibbi was on Hardball w/ Chris Matthews last night and really couldn't get over just how crazy Michele Bachmann really is.

From FireDogLake:

It's funny -- this morning outside of Penn Station I saw a guy a guy huffing glue out of a paper bag and he was making more sense than Michele Bachmann was making. I can't believe you need to pass a written test to drive a car in this country -- but I bet this woman can't even write her name in the ground with a stick.

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GOP Rep. Bachmann Touts Global Currency Conspiracy Theory

Even crazier than Glenn Beck, I'd say.

From PoliticsUSA:

According to Think Progress, Rep. Michele Bachmann went on Glenn Beck’s radio show today and peddled the conspiracy theory that that the world is moving towards a global currency. Interestingly, Bachmann defended herself by saying, “This isn’t Michele Bachmann being a kook.” Is this in comparison to the other times when she was being a kook?

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Crazy GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann Calls for "Orderly Revolution" Against President Obama & the Democrats

The woman is truly certifiable:

From TPM:

Wow. Just plain wow. This past Wednesday, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) appeared on Sean Hannity's radio show, and sharply reiterated her calls for revolution in America, warning against the imminent dangers of tyranny under Barack Obama:

"We are headed down the lane of economic Marxism," said Bachmann. "More quickly, Sean, than anyone could have possibly imagined. It's difficult for us to even keep up with it day to day."

And then came this:

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ThinkProgress: More than 10,000 of you have stood up to Bill O’Reilly.

Great update from Think Progress:

Since the launch of our Stop Supporting The O’Reilly Harassment Machine campaign on Wednesday afternoon, more than 10,000 of you have taken action. Thank you for all your support! In just two days, here are all the successes we’ve had:

– UPS announced it will no longer advertise on The Factor.

– Capital One expressed “regret” for O’Reilly’s insensitivity and explained that it does not endorse his views.

– A Ford spokesman candidly told us that he agreed with us about the “rantings of the hopelessly pig-headed Mr. O’Reilly.” (Ford then clarified that the statement did not speak for the company.)

– AT&T said it makes “every effort” to ensure their advertisers are in keeping with the company’s “corporate values and philosophy,” but it would not say whether O’Reilly’s show was in keeping with that philosophy.

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Here is the original call to action from ThinkProgress. If you haven't signed the letter, please do:
Stop Supporting The O’Reilly Harassment Machine

On Saturday, March 21, Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly sent one of his producers to stalk, harass, and ambush ThinkProgress.org’s managing editor Amanda Terkel. Upset over a ThinkProgress report that noted O’Reilly’s insensitivity to rape, O’Reilly sent two men to track Amanda in a car for two hours, and then confronted her with hostile questions while she was on vacation.

Sadly, Amanda is just one of at least 40 different victims of O’Reilly’s Harassment Machine. O’Reilly has hired producers whose job is to track, harass, and intimidate anyone whom O’Reilly perceives as an opponent. That’s not “journalism” — that’s a mafia-style operation. And we need to put an end to it.

Tell O’Reilly’s advertisers that you want them to issue a clear statement explaining their opposition to O’Reilly’s “ambush journalism.” Fill out the form below to tell O’Reilly’s corporate advertisers to stop supporting the O’Reilly Harassment Machine, and e-mail us if you receive any responses...

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Fox News Secedes From America: The Fox Nation

Ba bye. I hope the door hits you on the way out. Hard. Draws some blood maybe.

From KingOneEye:

It was just a matter of time. With all of the white-hot, ultra-hyperbolic invective radiating from Fox News screens across the land, there was really no escaping the obvious end game. The usual suspects in the Fox Confederacy have been so filled with revulsion by the neo-Socialist path that they believe the country is on, that they can no longer abide nor accept it. So now Fox News is preparing to depart from the union with a fanfare, a blast of light, a loud swoosh and gong. And an advertising campaign.

On first viewing of this ad I thought it may have been a joke akin to the Colbert Nation. It begins by declaring that “It’s time to say ‘NO’ to biased media.” Was Fox News coming clean and denouncing itself? No such luck. It was just that old “fair and balanced” Foxian doublespeak. Instead, Fox was announcing the birth of a nation - The Fox Nation...

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CNN in Third Place in Prime Time For First Time

I can't imagine why this is when you have a buffoon like Ed Henry & and GOP fluffer John King pretending to be anything but the right-wing hacks that they are and people have Foxed news if that's what they want. They don't want to see it on CNN. CNN made a mistake in jumping to the right in order to fight off the phony liberal label Fox threw at them. They should have said, FUCK YOU and continued doing what they did all along: Real news. Real reporting. Real journalism.

From HuffPo:

CNN is poised to finish March third in the prime-time weeknight ratings behind Fox News Channel and MSNBC, the first time this has ever happened for the channel that pioneered the cable news genre nearly three decades ago.


Through Wednesday, Fox was averaging 2.73 million prime-time viewers in March. MSNBC had 1.16 million and CNN had 1.14 million. The March ratings period ends Friday, and it's doubtful CNN will be able to overcome MSNBC.


CNN's ratings news "is very significant," said Frank Sesno, a former CNN Washington bureau chief and now a professor at George Washington University. "This is a big problem."


MSNBC chief executive Phil Griffin said the prime-time ratings are an affirmation of the network's decision to go liberal with Olbermann and Maddow. But he also said it pointed to problems at his rival.

"They've got the best brand in news," he said. "CNN, that's better than anybody. But you've got to deliver on that _ and they're not. It's a hollow promise."

He compared CNN to ESPN, which started at the same time, saying that, while ESPN has evolved aggressively and remained the leader in sports, CNN hasn't. Their evening lineup of Lou Dobbs, Brown, King and Cooper lacks any consistency or flow, he said.

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Levin to Release Full Declassifed Report On Detainee Torture

The full declassified version of a Senate Armed Services Committee report on the treatment of detainees, set for release as early as next week, is 200 pages, contains 2,000 footnotes, and will reveal a plethora of new information about the roles played by senior Bush administration officials in adopting a policy of torture.

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Sabato: Bachmann "Needs To Take A Deep Breath, And Maybe A Tranquilizer, Too"

Ya, think?

(photo h/t Talking Points Memo)

From TPM's Eric Kleefeld:

A short while ago I asked Larry Sabato if Michele Bachmann's comments about an "orderly revolution" against Barack Obama's Marxist tyranny would qualify as sedition. Here's his response:
I suppose the moderating element "orderly" saves her from the charge of sedition! Concern about the national debt is perfectly legitimate, but her comments are fringe--and not for the first time. Her phrase, "reporting from enemy lines," is inflammatory. We're all Americans, not enemies simply because we disagree about a president's budget. Bachmann doesn't have a clue what "economic Marxism" is; the Obama administration is not seizing the means of production. The Founders rebelled against "no taxation without representation". That's very different than having an argument about the proper levels of taxation in a representative democracy. Congresswoman Bachmann needs to take a deep breath, and maybe a tranquilizer, too.
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Kristol Launches Project For A New American Century 2.0

The Neocons are regrouping. Noting that FPI’s first public event next week, Afghanistan: Planning For Success, features a heavy representation of Iraq war advocates, Duss suggests that a far better title for the event would be Afghanistan: Dealing With The Huge Problems Created By Many Of The People On This Very Stage.

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BREAKING: UPS Announces It Will Stop Advertising on O'Reilly

WOW. WOW. WOW. This is people power in action. This isn't about 1st amendment rights, so don't let anyone tell you otherwise. No one is entitled to be paid for their hate speech, not even this putz.

From ThinkProgress:

In response to our Stop Supporting The O’Reilly Harassment Machine campaign, UPS told us yesterday that it was investigating whether to continue supporting O’Reilly’s show. “We are sensitive to the type of television programming where our messages and presence are associated and continually review choices to affect future decisions,” spokeswoman Susan Rosenberg told us.

Today UPS announced it will stop advertising on O’Reilly’s show. Here is the statement UPS emailed out just moments ago:

Thank you for sending an e-mail expressing concern about UPS advertising during the Bill O’Reilly show on FOX News. We do consider such comments as we review ad placement decisions which involve a variety of news, entertainment and sports programming. At this time, we have no plans to continue advertising during this show.

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Obama Uses Twitter For First Time Since Inauguration

While Barack Obama has the second-largest following on Twitter, it had been more than two months since his last "tweet." The more than 500,000 Twitter users who "follow" him finally got an update from the White House on March 25th announcing a new question and answer feature for the whitehouse.gov. My question is why has he waited so long?

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An Open Letter to the News Media

I get the feeling sometimes that too many cable news airheads got F's in history class. Talk about children being left behind.

From Dkos' Devilstower:

If Republicans were appearing on your news broadcasts and insisting that Barry Goldwater was the 38th president of the United States, or that the Chinese bombed Pearl Harbor, surely you would take a moment to halt the conversation and correct them. At least, I'd like to think so.

So why do you continue to allow Republican officials and conservative pundits to make statements such as "the Great Depression didn't end until World War II" or "the New Deal prolonged the depression" without comment? These statements are as incorrect as declaring Idaho a sovereign monarchy -- why are they constantly unchallenged?

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Countdown w/ Keith Olbermann: O’Reilly Spins into Absurdity

Great segment. O'Reilly is almost as insane and Glenn Beck is delusional & paranoid. Mrs. Murdock must be withholding sex from Rupert at this point considering how embarrassing Fixed news is to her.

From Countdown:

Terkel: "Bill O’Reilly needs to really take a long look in the mirror. He said that paparazzi are the scum of the Earth, and Americans are entitled to their right to privacy. But evidently, that only applies if you agree with Bill O’Reilly. If you don’t agree with Bill O’Reilly, it’s okay to be followed and harassed while you’re on vacation or to have his henchman accost you in your own garage. So it’s only if you agree with him you get those rights."

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ThinkProgress has more: Olbermann interviews Terkel about O’Reilly’s Harassment Machine.

The Obama Rally Begins

Bonddad is an expert. He's not simply a 'left-wing blogger.' He knows his shit, he know the market. He's one of those who was warning about a major market collapse 2 years ago. He's work is so detailed that at times my eyes glaze over. But his overall themes have been clear and when he says something, it's undoubtedly true.

From DKos' Bonddad:

Since early March the market has rallied over 20%. Yet -- for some strange reason -- the right wings blogs who professed doom at every opportunity then the market was dropping are now silent. Little Green Footballs -- who posted daily articles on the dow dropping -- has yet to comment on this rally. John Hawkins of Right Wing News -- who wrote an article titled "Is Obama Trying to Crash the Economy -- has been strangely silent. Powerline -- who are without a doubt economic titans of the highest order -- have not said a word. National Review has yet to comment on this rally -- even though I am sure they are happy to see it. After all, markets are good, right?


...there are a host right wing yahoos who at every turn talked about the market dropping over the last few months. Yet none have said anything about the rally. The reason is simple: they know squat about how the market works. One commenter to a previous story went so far as to blame the then latest drop entirely on Obama but failed to perform the same analysis on the 2007-2008 drop because "Bush did too good a job healing the economy". Talk about mental gymnastics.


So to the right wing blogs, yahoos and commentators who think the Dow is the ultimate arbiter of the economy, what say you now?

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Britian Responds to the "Rule of Law" Nuisance

Whether we like it or not, the world id going to prosecute Bush/Cheney for war crimes. This is on e of those areas where President Obama really disappoints me. For a constitutional scholar, his actions, or non-actions in most cases when it comes to Bush/Cheney's war crimes, is especially egregious.

From Glenn Greenwald:

Criminal investigations are now formally launched by America's staunchest ally into allegations of torture.

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A Legal Adviser Worthy of the Job

In the Bush administration, the Office of Legal Counsel gave a green light to many objectionable policies, from a lawless expansion of executive power to the use of torture. President Obama has nominated Dawn Johnsen to lead the office, but her nomination is being attacked by Republican senators who still prefer the Bush approach.

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The Woman Who Could Nail Bush - The Daily Beast

The real reason for Republicans' vehement opposition is that [Office of Legal Counsel nominee] Dawn Johnsen is committed to overturning the Bush administration’s policies on torture and warrantless surveillance that would clip the wings of the imperial presidency. Even more menacingly from their perspective, she is committed to disclosing some...

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Nate Silver: The Real Republican Road to Recovery

I think Nate Silver might just be punch drunk, cause he's having to much fun:

The Republican "Road to Recovery" budget alternative, rolled out today by John Boehner, has been criticized by left and right for its lack of specificity and its promise to eliminate the national debt while significantly cutting taxes. FiveThirtyEight.com, however, has received an advance copy of additional details prepared by the Minority Leader's office. Although some elements of the proposal are still under discussion -- Eric Cantor is said to want to eliminate North Dakota rather than Idaho, while Thaddeus McCotter has suggested using the balance of TARP funds to purchase scratch-off tickets -- the final plan can be expected to contain most or all of these components.

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