The Wires

Weekly Address

The President's Weekly Address

White House: "In this week’s address, the President reflected on the significant progress made by this country in 2014, and in the nearly six years since he took office":

The Ledes

Saturday, December 20, 2014.

New York Times: "The United States transferred four detainees from the Guantánamo Bay prison to Afghanistan late Friday, the Defense Department announced Saturday, fulfilling a request from the new Afghan president, Ashraf Ghani, in what officials here characterized as a show of good will between the United States and the government in Kabul.The four men are not likely to be subjected to further detainment in Afghanistan, an Obama administration official said."

New York Times: "In an apparent targeted killing, two police officers were shot in their patrol car in Brooklyn on Saturday afternoon by a man who later fatally shot himself in head, police officials said."

Reuters: "Dozens of protesters were arrested on Friday in Milwaukee when they blocked rush-hour traffic on a major highway to protest the killing of an unarmed black man who was fatally shot by a white police officer this year. The Milwaukee County Sheriff's Department took at least 73 adults and one minor into custody during the protest that blocked Interstate 43, which runs through the city, according to the department's Twitter feed."

Public Service Announcement

Surprise! December 19: Dr. Oz is a quack.

Washington Post, November 21: Learn how to use your thermostat & save $$$.

New York Times, November 17: "For the first time since statins have been regularly used, a large study has found that another type of cholesterol-lowering drug can protect people from heart attacks and strokes."

White House Live Video
December 19

1:30 pm ET: President Obama holds a press briefing

If you don't see the livefeed here, go to WhiteHouse.gov/live.

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

A former resident of Somerville, Massachusetts, calls into outgoing Gov. Deval Patrick's last regular monthly radio call-in show:

Sixteen times Stephen Colbert broke character on his show. With videos. ...

... Winger John Hinderaker of Powerline has never seen Colbert's show, but he's pretty sure it was an hour-long ad for the Democratic party. "I am not in favor of restricting anyone’s right to free speech, but if federal law is going to bar a businessman from contributing enough to buy more than a minimal amount of television time on behalf of his party or his candidates, why shouldn’t Stephen Colbert and Comedy Central be prohibited from airing millions of dollars worth of pro-Democratic Party propaganda?" CW: Evidently, Hinderaker has not heard of Fox "News."

Los Angeles Times: "A hashtag about asking police officers questions for a CNN panel turned extremely negative almost as soon as it was posted Tuesday. #AskACop was meant to be used by viewers who wanted to tweet questions to officers for the town hall segment "Cops Under Fire,” hosted by Don Lemon. There was an overwhelming response -- most of which were criticisms toward police." CW: Apparently CNN had no idea people were pissed at the police.

Bill Carter of the New York Times: "For nine years, Stephen Colbert has relentlessly maintained his pompous, deeply ridiculous but consistently appealing conservative blowhard character on his late-night show, 'The Colbert Report' — so much so that when he puts the character to rest for good on Thursday night, he may have to resort to comicide. The Grim Reaper is his last guest."

New York Times: "Life on Mars? Today? The notion may not be so far-fetched after all. A year after reporting that NASA’s Curiosity rover had found no evidence of methane gas on Mars, all but dashing hopes that organisms might be living there now, scientists reversed themselves on Tuesday. Curiosity has now recorded a burst of methane that lasted at least two months. For now, scientists have just two possible explanations for the methane. One is that it is the waste product of certain living microbes.... It could have been created by a geological process known as serpentinization, which requires both heat and liquid water. Or it could be a product of life in the form of microbes known as methanogens, which release methane as a waste product.... The scientists also reported that for the first time, they had confirmed the presence of carbon-based organic molecules in a rock sample. The so-called organics are not direct signs of life, past or present, but they lend weight to the possibility that Mars had the ingredients required for life, and may even still have them."

"Oh, God, It's Mom." Kelly Faircloth of Jezebel: "Oh my Lord, shut it down, here is the greatest moment in the history of C-SPAN: A (very Southern) mama called into one of their shows to yell at the guests. Not because she disagrees, but because the guests are brothers and both her sons and she is sick and tired of their shit":


Escape from Alcatraz. Live Science: "... on the night of June 11, 1962, three inmates left Alcatraz in one of the most mysterious prison breaks in American history. John Anglin, his brother Clarence Anglin and Frank Morris tucked dummy heads into their bed sheets and snuck into an unused utility corridor through holes they had crudely drilled through their cells. Then, from the prison roof, they shimmied down the bakery smoke stack and climbed over the fence. From the northeast shore of the island, they floated away from the prison on a small raft made from more than 50 stolen raincoats that were inflated with a musical instrument that was converted into a pump. Even the FBI still calls the plan 'ingenious' on its website. After a 17-year investigation, federal authorities concluded that the men most likely drowned during the escape...."

... BUT ...

... The linked story above has a better video, but it's not embeddable.

Rolling Stone: "David Letterman will retire from late-night television on Wednesday, May 20th. The Late Show host's production company Worldwide Pants announced the news, according to Deadline, with CBS Corp. President and CEO Leslie Moonves praising Letterman’s 'remarkable legacy of achievement and creative brilliance [which] will never be forgotten.'"

Washington Post: "New information from NASA's Curiosity Rover suggests that Mars may once have had large, long-lasting lakes above ground. That would challenge the more popular theory that water on the planet was only underground, or only appeared in a few areas for a short amount of time. The key to this latest theory is Mount Sharp, which stands 3 miles tall and sits in the red planet's Gale Crater. But Mount Sharp is a curious formation: The layered mountain is made of different kinds of sediment. Some layers were probably deposited by a surrounding lake bed, and other seem more likely to be the result of river or wind deposits." CW: Yeah, there was probably once a really well-developed life on Mars with flora & fauna & -- eventually -- little green men who didn't believe in climate change.

New York Times: "After weeks of planning, New York City welcomed the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on Sunday for a three-day visit, greeting Prince William and his wife, Catherine, with the blend of enthusiasm, sarcasm and bemusing antagonism that tends to tail the urban celebrity tourist."

The Wrap: "Longtime CNN political anchor Candy Crowley is leaving the network."

December 6: Max Fisher of Vox: So two white guys -- guys who will have no trouble finding other jobs -- get fired, & half the New Republic staff walks out in protest. Where was the outrage when Marty Peretz was editor & writing racist screeds? The contrasting reactions speak "to a larger problem of how we think about racism in American society and particularly in the elite media institutions that have badly lagged in employing people of color." ...

... Scott Lemieux in LG&M: "For all its sins [of the past], I don’t see how turning the magazine into another traffic-chaser under the aegis of a CEO who speaks Meaningless Buzzword and apparently lacks the attention span to read more than 500 words at a time is a good thing." ...

... Charles Pierce: "... contra Chait, and even though the magazine unquestionably has regained a lot of its lost quality, especially in its actual reporting, I think the notion that The New Republic is 'an essential foundation of American progressive thought' is a ship that sailed a long time ago." ...

... Zandar in Balloon Juice: " The number of damns I give about TNR as a going concern at this point equals approximately the number of black voices writing for the magazine, which is to say zero, but YMMV."

... December 4 & 5: Dylan Byers of Politico: "Franklin Foer and Leon Wieseltier, the top two editors at The New Republic, quit on Thursday amid a shakeup that will relocate the Washington-based magazine to New York City, sources there told Politico on Thursday. Gabriel Snyder, a Bloomberg Media editor who previously served at The Atlantic Wire, has been tapped to replace Foer as editor. The magazine will also reduce its print schedule to 10 issues a year, down from 20." ...

     ... New York Times Update: "More than two dozen members of the staff of The New Republic, including several contributing editors, resigned on Friday morning, angered by an abrupt change of editors and what they saw as a series of management missteps. The resignations include the senior editors Alec MacGillis, Julia Ioffe and Isaac Chotiner, and the contributing editors Sean Wilentz and William Deresiewicz, according to several staff members who are leaving. A list compiling the names of those resigning was obtained by The New York Times." ...

     ... AND more from Jessica Roy of New York. ...

... Jonathan Chait: The New Republic has lost its way. ...

... Ezra Klein: "It's a bit early, I think, to write The New Republic's eulogy. Gabriel Snyder, the magazine's new editor, is a smart and web-savvy guy." ...

... Leah Finnegan of Gawker: "Indeed, an entire magazine is now doomed to fail because a white man has been fired and — gasp — an internet-savvy white man has been brought in to replace him! In TNR's 100-year history, I never would have imagined such a triage of injustice. It's clear that the new leadership of the magazine—with all their greasy Facebook money—is dead set on ruining a (historically racist) publication no one ever read in the first place, and was on the slow road to Irrelevance City. What will Chris Hughes do next? Perhaps the publication might even become interesting. Scream!"

Charles Pierce is completely taken with Ed Snowden. He's brave, credible & intelligent, blah-blah, & the film "Citizenfour" is bee-youtiful. For an antidote to starry-eyed Charles, see this review by Fred Kaplan of Slate.

This is quite cool:

 

Washington Post: "Scientists are 99.999 percent sure, in their most conservative estimate, that remains found in 2012 really do belong to King Richard III. These results, published Tuesday in Nature Communications, put a 529-year-old cold case to rest -- all thanks to some intense genetic detective work." CW: Let's hope one of the expert detectives wasn't Shaun Parcells. You may weigh in, Dr. Schwalb. ...

Welcome to Gramercy Park! -- "one of the most forbidden places in Manhattan." New York Times: Woody Allen couldn't get in to film, Robert De Niro couldn't get in, but Shawn Christopher, who was honeymooning in Manhattan, borrowed a key and "took three 360-degree panoramas using Photo Sphere, a Google app, and then uploaded them to the company’s ubiquitous Maps site. He had gotten into the park using another of his favorite technologies, Airbnb, where the room he rented included not only fresh linens and Wi-Fi but also one of the 383 coveted keys to the park. Mr. Christopher was unaware at the time that guests had to be accompanied by key holders on their visits and that commercial photography was prohibited." So take an insider's view of the park.

Contact the Constant Weader

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Monday
Aug272012

The Commentariat -- August 28, 2012

Presidential Race

Milt Shook (I think) writes, "What has Obama Done? Here Are 194 Accomplishments! With Citations! If you're one of those who thinks President Obama is a "disappointment," my condolences for not getting your unicorn." Thanks to Jeanne B. for the link.

Michael Cohen of the Guardian on why Obama should run on the success of the stimulus. Um, it worked, as "Michael Grunwald's exceptional new book, The New New Deal: The Hidden Story of Change in the Obama Era" demonstrates. "Republicans," Cohen writes, "not surprisingly, like to blame President Obama for the poor state of the US economy, but in reality, the US is living today under a Republican economy -- one that comprises low taxes and curbed spending. The results speak for themselves."

Michael Shear of the New York Times: "Difficult questions loom for Mr. Obama and his political advisers as they plot their attacks. If the storm wreaks havoc on the Gulf Coast, should Democrats ease up? Does Mr. Obama cut short his campaign swing, or continue to rally his supporters against Mr. Romney amid images of mass evacuations and property damage?"

Jim Fallows of the Atlantic says Romney will do a good job in the debates with Obama. A big help: as so many of us said in yesterday's Commentariat, the moderator won't call Romney on his lies. Too bad Chris Matthews isn't a moderator!

Ashley Southall of the New York Times: "Republican ... party leaders want to drive home a message to voters: The federal debt is hurtling toward $16 trillion, and it is President Obama's fault. That's the gist of what the party chairman, Reince Priebus, said as he banged a gavel to open the convention Monday afternoon. The banging activated a 'debt clock' in the convention hall that tallies the amount the debt accumulating during the four-day event. A second ticker that started running earlier displays the total national debt.... Republicans are of course not mentioning their own role in its growth during the Bush administration." ...

Michael Shear of the New York Times: "Mitt Romney's hopes for a highly disciplined and scripted nominating convention continued to fray Monday morning as a tropical storm barreled toward New Orleans and was expected to strengthen into a hurricane. Mr. Romney's convention organizers were also warily keeping an eye on some restive delegates, including supporters of Representative Ron Paul of Texas, who were poised to challenge parts of the convention's rules and platform when it begins Tuesday afternoon. Broadcast and cable networks on Monday began shifting some of their resources toward the hurricane-threatened Gulf Coast...." ...

Oops! So much for "highly disciplined & scripted"; Romney sends the wrong script. Elise Viebeck of The Hill: "Copies of Mitt Romney's book, distributed at the GOP convention, retain a sentiment anathema to the GOP base -- that the Massachusetts healthcare reform law could be a model for the nation. The sentence that makes this case was changed for No Apology's paperback version, but reporters in Tampa received copies with the original wording along with other swag."

This fellow may look like a normal meterologist. But he's an Obama stooge! Maybe the communist-red shirt is the telltale clue.... Rushbo Will Not Be Satirized. Kevin Robillard of Politico: "Rush Limbaugh ... suggested Monday that the National Hurricane Center's forecast models for Tropical Storm Isaac were altered to help President Barack Obama and 'cast a pall' over the Republican National Convention. 'I'm not alleging conspiracies here. The Hurricane Center is the regime; the Hurricane Center is the Commerce Department,' Limbaugh said on his talk show. 'It's the government. It's Obama.' The conservative talker suggested early forecasts, which showed the storm hitting Tampa, the convention's host city, were intended to cause Republicans to cancel the first day of their convention. Newer models showing the storm striking New Orleans, he said, are intended to link the convention to memories of Hurricane Katrina, which made landfall seven years ago this week." ...

... Is it any wonder then that conservatives want to defund the weather service? ...

... BUT Rush's hurricane theory isn't the only one out there. While Mother Nature was melting Arctic ice (see yesterday's Ledes, God was steering the hurricane away from Tampa & toward New Orleans. Brian Tashman of Right Wing Watch. "Today on the 700 Club, Christian Broadcasting Network correspondent Paul Strand spoke to Jesten Peters of Keys of Authority Ministries who said that her organization's prayer efforts helped steer Tropical Storm Isaac away from Tampa in order to protect the Republican National Convention." ...

... Neetzan Zimmerman of Gawker: "But what about the fact that Isaac is now expected to strengthen into a hurricane and make landfall in Louisiana on the seventh anniversary of Katrina? Oh, that. Something something gay marriage." ...

... Carl Hulse of the New York Times: Louisiana Gov. Bobby "Jindal (R), who at one point had been considered a strong potential candidate for vice president on the Republican ticket, announced Monday that he would not attend events in Tampa while the storm threatened his state, let alone speak as scheduled at 8 p.m. Wednesday."

Dogwhistling' Dixie

For those of you unconvinced that Rmoney's welfare ads are racist, Ezra Klein has the 1-2 punch: (1) Romney's "campaign is running more ads about welfare than just about any other issue." Citing the results of an academic study, Klein writes, (2) "The evidence suggests that the [ads] work particularly well if the viewer is racist, or at least racially resentful. And these are the ads that are working so unexpectedly well that welfare is now the spine of Romney's 2012 on-air message in the battleground states." CW: no doubt Rmoney would run the same types of lies if Obama were white. Republicans have repeatedly run similar racist ads against white Democrats ("Willie Horton" -- Dukakis); the ads this year happen to work particularly well because Obama is black. Never mind that they're lies from beginning to end. ...

... Susan Page of USA Today: "Romney defends the welfare ads as accurate, accusing Obama of offering state waivers as a political calculation designed to 'shore up his base' for the election." ...

... Tim Noah Translation: "President Obama doesn't represent you; he represents a lot of people on welfare. And you know what they look like." Noah writes, "Of course, Romney isn't interested in the facts; he's interested in associating Obama with black and Hispanic undesirables bent on collecting welfare benefits and robbing white elderly people of their health insurance.... Like Poppy Bush, Romney is not a racist himself. He is, arguably, something worse: A man who, because he has no particularly pronounced views himself, is willing to say just about anything to get himself elected president." ...

... David Firestone of the New York Times: "If Mr. Obama intended his welfare waiver as a political trumpet blast to his base, he had a very strange way of showing it. The actual waivers ... were never publicly announced by the administration." CW: apparently the lazy welfare bastards spend all that free time poring through federal regulations to see what-all is in it for them. Just like Romney & his tax attorneys, they know how to game the system.

... Ed Kilgore of Washington Monthly: "... conservative activists have for decades argued that the 'liberal base' of the Democratic Party is an alliance between a government-dependent 'underclass' and 'elites' determined to socialize the country who use po' folk as their pawns.... That's a big part of their inveterate Obama Hatred: the president is the incarnation of both the snooty secular-socialist 'elites' and the minority underclass."

      ... Jim Vandehei & Mike Allen of Politico: "Mitt Romney conceded President Barack Obama has succeeded in making him a less likable person, but he offered a defiant retort to those hoping he will open up this week: 'I am who I am.' Romney quoted that Popeye line three times in a 30-minute interview with Politico about his leadership style and philosophy, swatting away advice from Republicans to focus on connecting with voters in a more emotional, human way at this convention. Instead, he vowed to keep his emphasis -- in the campaign and any administration to follow -- on a relentlessly goal-driven, business-minded approach that has shaped his life so far."

It's Official! Paul Krugman: "... the draft Republican platform says of Medicare and Medicaid,

The first step is to move the two programs away from their current unsustainable defined-benefit entitlement model to a fiscally sound defined-contribution model.

      ... That means that instead of Medicare as we know it, which pays your medical bills, you'd get a lump sum which you can apply to private insurance -- they'll yell when we call it a voucher, but that's what it is.... It's basically a way to deny health care to people while denying that you're doing so. You don't say, 'we won't pay for this care', you just hand people a voucher and let them discover that it won't buy adequate insurance. It's health-care rationing...."

Priorities USA, a pro-Obama superPAC, hits Governor Romney:

Jonathan Weisman of the New York Times: "The House speaker, John A. Boehner [R-Ohio], on Monday cautiously predicted victory for Republicans up and down the ticket in November, but he avoided saying that a Republican victory would mean a mandate for the sweeping changes to Medicare that Mitt Romney and Representative Paul D. Ryan have proposed."

Conservative Washington Post columnist Kathleen Parker has an excellent essay in the Daily Beast titled "What the *#@% Is Wrong With Republicans?! It's not just Akin. By pushing some of the most invasive state policies in modern history, the men of the GOP are driving their party off a cliff.... The GOP, through its platform, its purity tests, pledges, and its emphasis on social issues that divide rather than unite, has shot itself in the foot, eaten said foot, and still managed to stampede to the edge of the precipice."

Jackie Calmes of the New York Times: "President Obama received a briefing on Monday afternoon about Tropical Storm Isaac as it approached hurricane force, but aides say no decision has been made to cancel his campaign trip on Tuesday to two swing states, Iowa and Colorado."

Sarah Wheaton of the New York Times: "Charlie Crist, the former Republican governor of Florida who ran for the Senate as an independent, will speak at the Democratic National Convention next week, taking yet another step away from his erstwhile party. Ben LaBolt, an Obama campaign spokesman, confirmed Mr. Crist's role just a day after he endorsed the president for re-election."

Congressional Races

Women are "one Supreme Court Justice away" from overturning Roe v. Wade:

     ... Jess Bidgood of the New York Times: "While Ms. Warren does not mention her opponent in the ad, she alludes to legislation that she brought up on the campaign trail last week -- including [Sen. Scott] Brown's vote last year against the Paycheck Fairness Act, an unsuccessful bill intended to ease the way for litigation over gender discrimination in pay, and his support for the Blunt amendment, a failed measure that would have allowed employers to deny coverage for treatments like birth control based on philosophical or religious exceptions."

Rape Is a Lot Like Consensual Sex Between Unmarried Adults. Tara Culp-Ressler of Think Progress: "Tom Smith, the Republican challenging Sen. Bob Casey's (D-PA) seat, suggested that having a child out of wedlock was analogous to rape during an interview with a reporter at a press club this afternoon, claiming that it would have a 'similar' effect on a father."

Our Exceptional Judiciary

Manny Fernandez of the New York Times: Texas County Judge Tom Head, "a Republican who serves as the county's emergency management director..., made international headlines [when] ... he said he was expecting civil unrest if President Obama is re-elected, and that the president would send United Nations forces into Lubbock ... to stop any uprising.... He has not apologized, though he said that his statements were taken out of context.... Kenny Ketner, the chairman of the Lubbock County Democratic Party, has called for Mr. Head to resign, as did the local newspaper, The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, which wrote in an editorial that Mr. Head 'threw civility out the window and went in a bizarre direction that not only embarrassed himself but all county and West Texas residents.' Gilberto Hinojosa, the chairman of the Texas Democratic Party, publicly questioned Mr. Head's 'mental competency to hold elected office.'" ...

... Here the Avalanche-Journal's editors urge Head to resign.

James Barr of the New York Times: Vincent Sgueglia, an upstate New York judge, after signing his own carry permit in 2005, took his Smith & Wesson to the courthouse in Owego, New York, where he tried to repair a faulty firing mechanism -- um, with bullets in the chamber. So the gun went off. Fortunately, the bullet lodged in the wall instead of in somebody's head. The State Commission on Judicial Conduct censured him.

News Ledes

Weather Channel: "Isaac's peak impacts are bearing down on the Gulf Coast beginning today. Hurricane warnings continue for portions of the northern Gulf Coast, including New Orleans, Biloxi and Gulf Shores as Tropical Storm Isaac continues its northwestward march. Hurricane watches are posted as far west as Morgan City, La. In addition, a number of tropical storm warnings are in effect. A tropical storm warning is in effect for the Florida Panhandle." With video. ...

... Update: "Isaac has strengthened into a hurricane just as its peak impacts are bearing down on the northern Gulf Coast. Hurricane Isaac will pound the region with storm surge flooding, heavy rainfall, strong winds and an isolated tornado threat Tuesday into Thursday." With video. ...

... Update: "Hurricane Isaac made its first U.S. landfall along the extreme southeastern Louisiana coast at 6:45 p.m. Tuesday evening, but quickly veered west back over water. Isaac will continue to move very slowly near the Louisiana coast into Wednesday. Since Isaac is moving at a snail's pace, the hurricane will pound the northern Gulf Coast with storm surge flooding, heavy rainfall, strong winds and possible isolated tornadoes through Wednesday." With video.

Washington Post: "A federal court on Tuesday threw out Texas's redistricting plans, saying the maps drawn by the Republican-led legislature undermined the political clout of minorities who are responsible for the state's population growth. The three-judge special panel in Washington said Texas could not prove that plans for the state's congressional districts and both houses of the legislature were not drawn without intentional discrimination against the state's burgeoning Latino population. In addition, it said new district lines removed the 'economic guts' from congressional districts now held by African-Americans."

Washington Post: "The Obama administration announced strict new vehicle fuel-efficiency standards Tuesday, requiring that the U.S. auto fleet average 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025, an uncontroversial move that, unlike other administration energy policies, was endorsed by industry and environmentalists alike."

Washington Post: "French President Francois Hollande became the first Western leader to call on Syria's rebel movement to form a provisional government, putting additional pressure on President Obama to back the diplomatic gambit or authorize U.S. military action to protect civilians."

New York Times: "An Israeli judge ruled on Tuesday that the state bore no responsibility for the death of Rachel Corrie, the young American woman who was run over by a military bulldozer in 2003 as she protested housing demolitions in the Gaza Strip."

National Journal: "Arlen Specter, Pennsylvania's longest-serving senator who lost his bid for reelection in 2010 after three decades in Washington, has been hospitalized with a 'serious illness,' according to a Philadelphia media outlet." ...

     ... Washington Post Update: "Former senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania is being treated again for cancer, his office confirmed Tuesday."

Reader Comments (26)

Here what i remember is the last president was President George Bush,who ran for two terms.2008 HAS SEEM TO DESTROY AMERICA 'S VALUES TO REALITY OF TRUTH AND GOD ...When 2012 , pray God finally hear his children by putting a president in the White House..Romney,would make a great president.Finally something to place back in the world of realty..

August 27, 2012 | Unregistered Commentersarahphillip

Though he has not been mentioned in today's Commentariat, I know all of you are drooling to know how much M-O-N-E-Y our casino creep, Sheldon Adelson possesses--'specially in comparison to several small countries. Also, how many politicians he could buy. And how it looks on a little chart. Think Progress has answered your prayers: (and mine)

http://thinkprogress.org/wp- content/uploads/2012/08/AdelsonSuperRich.png

August 27, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKate Madison

sarahphillip-

Jokin' right? I'll bet Gawker sent you to mess with our little left wing minds!

August 27, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKate Madison

@Kate Madison. Not Gawker, but God, who apparently does not offer spell-checks to the common cloud-dwellers. Evidently, heaven is run on the Romney/Ryan budget -- lotsa manna for God, Abraham & Jesus, but no public schools for the littlest angels. It would appear that sarahphillip was home-schooled by the sort of illiterate that the Romney/Ryan plan guarantees will be the future for most of us. Consider her the canary in the cave.

August 27, 2012 | Registered CommenterThe Constant Weader

CW: Don't get too puffed up with pride, now that you've prompted a comment (ms. sarah, need I say?) worthy of far too many in the Washington Post.

Interesting that Kathleen Parker is attending more often to her party's shortcomings lately. She writes, and often thinks well; given the state of her party, must be hard for not to pull a Charlie Crist. Can't imagine her going through the painful contortions David Brooks undertakes to pull a Rightist column out of his hat that still leaves him safely distant from from the Right's essential stink.

Parker seems to have more sense and fewer pretensions than Brooks, so we'll see.

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKen Winkes

Here's a tidbit that jumped out at me from the NYTimes' Michael Shearer's story that Marie mentions today,( it's about ten paragraphs down): "All of it unfolded before a restless audience of about 4,500 delegates and 16,000 journalists left with little to do but stare at television screens covered with images of Isaac bearing down on the Gulf Coast..."

16,000 journalists! 16,000 JOURNALISTS! are there in Tampa.
This is probably 15,500 too many (I'm being generous) to cover this event that will produce practically identical news stories. Oh, and there are approximately 4,500 delegates. Or 3.5 journalists per delegate. Idiocy!

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMAG

The delusional Right is at it again, folks.

Under the Ledes heading here on RC, you'll find a link to a story that broke yesterday concerning the arrest, for a double murder, of soldiers stationed in Georgia who had formed a right-wing terrorist cell with plans to (among other things) blow up a fountain in Savannah, GA, poison apple orchards in WA, ahhh....let's see....what else.....oh yeah, assassinate the president and overthrow the government. Gotta hand it to these righties, they're creative AND ambitious. Who'd a thunk that poison apples would be on the same list as presidential assassination? Must be the fairy tale connection.

But they're not just harmless, if deranged, kooks. They did murder a former fellow soldier and shot his 17 year old girlfriend through the head. The alleged shooter and mastermind in this weird affair is a former page at the RNC 2008 convention who describes himself as the "nicest cold blooded killer you'd ever want to meet." Well, I'll forgo that pleasure for the nonce (although I can't help thinking how many more potential killers are at that convention right now, buying "legal" semi-automatic pistols with the multiple kill-true hundred shot cartridge attachments complete with NRA decoder rings from the trunks of BMWs in back of the convention hall. Wayne La Pierre could make a fucking killing in Tampa this week!).

I'm betting there are probably several hundred right-wing whack jobs out there right now, shaving their heads, popping pimples, reading Paul Ryan autographed copies of Ayn Rand, renewing their subscriptions to Soldier of Fortune, stockpiling ammo, purchasing legal WMD, happily flashing their NRA badges to each other as they meet at outhouses in the woods for their weekly circle jerk, drooling on their stained camo outfits as they listen to Rushbo via implants in their teeth, calling each other by their Black Ops names and planning on which one of them will get to actually shoot Obama first.

In earlier times (pre-Ronald Reagan), this sort of thing would be looked at with a jaundiced, but cautious eye, as the mentally dysfunctional masturbatory fantasies prompted by adolescent aggression and bullying braggadocio. Today however, it's much more than that.

How do I know?

A judge (a freakin' judge, fer crissakes) in Texas is thinking along the same lines. An adult, so-called, in a position of authority, paid by a county government, with access to shitloads of weapons and ammo. And THIS guy has come right out and declared that he will be ready to shoot to kill if Obama is elected and civil war is declared.

Another way I know is the responses from fellow droolers. Just look at any site that so far has reported this story. You'll find a plethora of righties screaming that those killer soldiers are actually left-wing operatives, or plants to make right-wingers look bad. Or they complain that this story was timed to coincide with the Orgy of Haters convention in Tampa. No, Rush, now listen carefully....it was timed to coincide with the arrest of these right-wing militia murderers, one of whom was a page at the last Orgy of Haters. Moron.

The problem, as I'm beginning to see it, is that for many serious conservatives who felt that government had become overly intrusive, there were reasonable solutions. I'm pretty sure most of them weren't thinking "Hey! How 'bout revolution? How 'bout overthrowing the government, and while we're at it...murdering the president?!! Yeah!"

These people have gone way, way off the rails. They're a freight train on a dirt road. They remind me of George Santayana's definition of a fanatic as someone who redoubles their efforts after they've forgotten their purpose. Or as Neil Postman once put it, fanatics hold beliefs that are self-fulfilling. The problem with that is not so much that fanatical beliefs are necessarily false but that "...they are expressed in such a way that they can never be shown to be false".

Thus we have imbeciles like Rushbo claiming that Obama ordered meteorologists to declare that Tampa would be hit by a hurricane in order to fuck with Republicans. Other imbeciles then claimed, apparently, that they countered Obama's evil move with prayer and god turned the hurricane away.

And sent it where? To New Orleans?

If none of this makes any sense, consider yourself diagnosed as "non-fanatical".

Also not stupid, stupid, stupid.

Enjoy the crazies tonight. But remember. They're not just kooks anymore. The kind of fanatical thinking advocated by the modern GOP really does generate people who think about killing the president.

And maybe you too.

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAkhilleus

@sarah

Sorry, couldn't understand a word of that gibberish you wrote. Say again?

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered Commentercakers

From the Department of enigmatic puzzles and stuff:


In AD 2101 war was beginning

Captain: What happen?
Mechanic: Someone set us up the bomb
Operator: We get signal
Captain: What?
Operator: Main screen turn on.
Captain: It’s you!
CATS: How are you gen-tle-men?
CATS: All your base are belong to us. You are on way to destruction.
Captain: What you say?
CATS: You have no time to survive. Make your time. Ha-ha-ha
Captain: Move ZIG for great justice!

So sarahphilip. Can I join your club now? Remember. All their base are belong to us who figure puzzle out good for great justice. And stuff.


(I know this looks like piling on but c'mon, that could not have been a serious post.)

By the bye, doesn't the bad guy's laugh sound just like the Romneybot?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qItugh-fFgg

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAkhilleus

Sarahphillip- or Sarah Palin, the word salad queen.
Inquiring minds want to know!!

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterVictoria D.

David Brooks today is Funny! As I read I kept waiting for his usual gotcha...maybe his # of words went beyond the NYT limit for op-ed pieces...and the last paragraph is missing! Or maybe we are seeing the invasion of the body snatchers!

His Bip, Chip, Rip, Kip & Drip- the five Romney sons is hilarious. But when did names get to be so so cutsey neo-preppie? Strange trend.

@Marie hope you take on Roger Cohen's "Obama's Team of Idolizers" in one of your NYTimes Examiner pieces. I used to regard his opinion pieces with a lot of respect. But, recently, he has taken some strange positions...and today's column is definitely one of his puzzlers.

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMAG

Is this for real?

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/28/opinion/brooks-the-real-romney.html

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGail

Set the DVRs tonight if you can’t watch the Orgy of Haters, Racists, and Billionaires (sounds like a reality show? More like a delusional show…but all too real, unfortunately, for most of America), Hollywood giant Janine Turner will be on to lecture the rest of us about our heathen ways, why we don’t know anything about the Constitution (she does, of course), and how much liberals and Obama are pissing off the Baby Jesus by hating America.

In case you don’t remember who that is, Janine Turner had a few years of fame and glory during the 90s on the TV hit Northern Exposure. Anyway, turns out she’s a true right-wing whackadoodle.

Like most conservatives, she’s also a victim of liberal bias. See, she hasn’t had any Oscar or Emmy winning roles in a looooonnnnggg time. True, she won a bunch of Emmys back in the day, but for some reason she attributes her fallow period of late to liberal hatred of her conservative ways, ergo her standing as a victim. This didn’t seem to be a problem when she was winning all those Emmys.

Of course this particular whine fails to account for the success of other Hollywood conservatives like, oh, Clint Eastwood, Chuck Norris, Kelsey Grammar, Victoria Jackson, Mel Gibson, Jon Voigt, not to mention that other John, Wayne. Also Jim Cavaziel (Jesus H. Christ, himself) who goes off on the same “Hollywood hates me cause I’m a conservative Catholic” rant but neglects to note that he’s the star of a currently successful series, Person of Interest.

But back to Ms. Turner who will be spreading her Teabagger/Baby Jesus love tonight. Like many fundamentalists, she is afraid of almost everything not biblically authorized. So she likes Yoga but it comes from a strange country with brown people who talk real funny and worship false gods. Not to mention that thing with cows.

What to do?

Like any xenophobic fundamentalist/conservative nutjob, the answer is to wish it all away. Because good Christian men and women who want to try Yoga but can’t abide the heathenish meditation and salacious sounding names for poses like Downward Facing Dog and Elephant’s Trunk, can relax now that Janine has rebranded this ancient Indian discipline as—I kid you not—Christ-oga.

That means that Christians won’t be infected by nasty Hindu or Buddhist elements as they tighten their tushies. Jesus would never approve otherwise. And no cows!

And not to worry, she’s not just a fundamentalist whackjob, she’s interested in history and literature. She knows first-hand what the Founders thought and how much they would hate Barack Obama (don’t all Teabaggers know this shit?) and she indoctrinate….er, ah, read nothing but Ayn Rand to her little girl as she got ready for bed each night. For years.

Such a good mommy. Such a sound foundation for a warped life.
But all of that makes her the perfect speaker at the Orgy of Haters, Racists, and Billionaires. (What, was Linda McMahon busy bodyslamming wimpy liberals at her billion dollar gym?)

But like many conservative fundamentalists, she talks a great game but seems to have trouble with the walk. That little girl? Fathered by Dallas Cowboys owner, and noted lover of Jesus, Jerry Jones while he was married to someone else. Tut-tut. What would they say if a Democrat had done that? Oh I know...they tried to impeach his ass.....for TWO YEARS.

Anyway, the delightful Ms. Turner will be speaking sandwiched in between Cheeto Man Boehner and Savonarola Santorum. Now if that doesn’t whet your appetite, you ain’t a right thinkin’ ‘merican

Can’t wait.

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAkhilleus

That David Brooks column? WTF is that all about? I'm not sure but I'm guessing either he doesn't think Romney can win and wants to be able to say he called it, all the while maintaining his conservative bona fides. You know, the REAL kind, not the Romneybot kind.

(And if the Rat wins, he can say he wrote this thing after coming back from the dentist and it was all the fault of the laughing gas.)

Either that or he's getting ready for a doozy of a column on Obama next week.

Guess I'll go check out Marie's take.

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAkhilleus

Marie, loved the link you gave about all that our president has accomplished so I emailed it to lots of people. One person said she placed the link on her Obama Tumblr account, which is filled with everything positive about him and so much more. Check out the link ( http://ohyes-wecan.tumblr.com) for a good antidote to the "Orgy of Haters, Racists, and Billionaires" (thanks, Akhilleus!)

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMushiba

I know I hafta do it, but the thought of even scanning all the stories about the "orgy of Haters, Racists, & Billionaires" is depressing me. I hope I can find some funny stuff to cheer us up.

Marie

August 28, 2012 | Registered CommenterThe Constant Weader

David Brookstone's column today is a throwback to his first book: "Bobos in Paradise,"- The New Upper Class and How They Got There. Clever satire about the yuppies, and their excesses and pretensions.

What is interesting to me is that although David Brooks wrote so wittily about Bobos, he is one of them. And he writes wittily about Mitt RawMoney's 1% mentality--yet he shares that mentality, though he is more likely part of the 2%. He can be critical and scathing about a man whose sociological belief system is almost identical to his own, without seeing the irony. Yeah, I am sure David Brooks sees himself as a "nicer" person. And maybe he is. Certainly more socially at ease, and not so constrained by the Mormon culture, since he is a sophisticated conservative Jew. But he is also a patronizing, clueless, elitist who truly believes that that money should rule. In the end, he is perfectly in sync with RawMoney.

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKate Madison

What's funny is the conservatives who are convinced Brooks is making fun of progressives:

http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2012/08/dave_barry_take_on_romney_biography_comments.html#disqus_thread

http://www.businessinsider.com/david-brooks-on-the-real-mitt-romney-2012-8#comment-503d1ae96bb3f77d5e000001

Marie your column is really great: http://www.nytexaminer.com/2012/08/the-real-mitt-romney/

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGail

Anyone who believes Brooks was serious in his mocking of Romney today hasn't read any of his other columns, including the one dated August 20th, where he extolls the Romney -Ryan ticket for its excellent approach to Medicare reform (really, it's Ryan's plan, but he gives Romney credit by extension). And basically says Romney is the reasonable choice for moderates and independents because of this (tunnel vision, much, David?)
Anyway, he was having fun at the expense of moderates and liberals who don't like Romney the person.
At least , that's my take....
Oh the knots Republicans will tie themselves in order to support a bunch of extremists, just because they bear the party label.

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterVictoria D.

I didn't know what to expect of Marie's deconstruction of Bobo's biographical parody of the Life of a Rat (a big fucking rat) but what I found is a comprehensive compilation of the most assiduously investigated and acutely observed Ratologies available to which she adds a sharp personal observation that digs deep into Willard's most carefully hidden psychological cranny.

And what is that?

He is, at heart, an insecure little boy. Bullies are typically scared little shits who fear that those they seek to impress with their aggressiveness snd bluster will see through all the camouflage and realize that they are nothing but balless little shits loved by few and respected by fewer.

Do you remember that line of Romney's about how Obama is being "mean to him" because he's jealous of the Rat?

Seriously?

Barack Obama, President of the United States, a black man who has done what no other non-white has done before him, a guy who earned everything he achieved as opposed to a smarmy prick of a rich boy like Willard is JEALOUS of Romney??????

Sounds much more like Richie Rich who is liked by a tiny sycophantic minority is jealous of the poor kid for whom millions of real people turned out around the world without having to be bribed or paid off.

Romney cannot ABIDE the idea that a poor but very smart and savvy black kid can kick his rich ass.

Solipsistic asshole doesn't begin to cover it.

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAkhilleus

Victoria D - it's true, confirmation bias is rampant on all side. But all I can say is, if Brooks meant to praise Caesar, er, Romney, he did a better job of burying him than anything else I've seen, by far, haha!!

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGail

@Gail. Yes. But let's not forget that the New York Fucking Times loses cachet beginning about 50 miles west of the Atlantic coast line and increasingly peters out all the way to Arizona.

August 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJames Singer

Kate Madsion,Your kiddening,right.Republicans have been cleaning the bill clinton bullcrap for 1 half terms to make society better.By the time Bush was ready to improve another part ,here come re elections and promises to the other part of the government.So the last thing Bush get a chance to do is Stimulus,Now ,it's the worst thing in the world.Compare with no improvements Bill Clinton Last 4 years ....

August 29, 2012 | Unregistered Commentersarahphillip

Bill Clinton's last for years for the state of virginia and Georgia left huge unemployed humans on the earth.The first term of Bush, Virginia had employment by the same big wigs of wealth and hardship.Yet it is not enough.Compounded with the resentment of him helping better than Bill Clinton 2 terms.With democratic you get the fausle elusion of them doing the work ,parties ,appearing to help.While all the while money,unemployment and abuse of society is taken place.Which puts us back in Proverty to cleanup.When republican get in office the hardship their ,yet the work is being done and effectively.By the time they put things back in order,someone isn't happy because jobs were made,but they want to control it,society in a hold leaking by waste into the cleanup system and crying wolf to elude the democratics are better..With Bush terms, we got the landfield in order,burning the trash to pay for the light on the highway.Made jobs for unemployed humans.Sewage or utilites system was supported by big wigs who also redid building to house new business to sale thier goods .Which made jobs and employed millions.The lanfields got cleanedup ,recycling ,debra pickup have all made the enviroment in resident area /and public better for breathing.SSI AND SSN is still better than prevous,just bad workers ,who seek embesal the income for mindless approach to life.

August 29, 2012 | Unregistered Commentersarahphillip

Sorry !for my mis-spelled words ,but my keyboard is constantly sticking or the signal is overdelayed..Cakers real gibberish..Really sad ,when think you have a valid opinion on others.Who stated facts and opinion.Be careful sometime Zillioners and thier children read this web.You be surprise..They may know more than you....But i'll tell higherup 's Middle uppercrust,Middleclass and homebound veterans,ssn/ssi need the evil middle man out of the hardship of life....Because they are starving....

August 29, 2012 | Unregistered Commentersarahphillip

sarahphillip-

You have more of a "problem" than typewriter keys sticking! I have come to the conclusion that you are a troll and have been assigned to invade this website by--uh--maybe, Dick Armey? Or some other Tea Partier. Rush Limbaugh would be the obvious guess, but I don't think he would bother. I wish you could get your grammar straight and write a readable, correctly spelled sentence. It would make you more credible as a part of the "loyal opposition" and sound less pathetic. Have you considered getting an editor?

August 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKate Madison
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