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114th Congress 2015-2016

House

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/12/04/1345599/-Your-guide-to-2014-s-election-results-and-the-114th-Congress-members-and-their-nbspdistricts

http://thehill.com/new-members-guide-2014

113th Congress 2013-2014

Presidency

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/27-shocking-numbers-that-reveal-the-true-state-of-the-union-20140128

End Times for Obama? Why This Crisis Will Also Pass. by Michael Tomasky Nov 8, 2013 8:15 PM EST The Obamacare website situation is bad—but it’s not a make-or-break moment for this presidency. It’s just another round of the media’s trumped-up crises. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/11/08/end-times-for-obama-why-this-crisis-will-also-pass.html

States

“This isn’t about protecting abortion. It’s about protecting women,” she said. “It’s about trusting women to make good decisions for themselves and empowering them with the tools to do that.” Davis does not want to portray herself as a one-issue candidate, noting that her job on the campaign trail is to allow voters to see who she really is. “(I’m) a woman who wants desperately for others who are coming up in poverty to receive the same kind of partnership from the state that I once received so that they too can become a part of the success of Texas,” she said. Davis suggested that her views on abortion access do not mean she does not care about life.

“I am pro-life,” she said, borrowing from the label anti-abortion activists assign themselves. “I care about the life of every child: every child that goes to bed hungry, every child that goes to bed without a proper education, every child that goes to bed without being able to be a part of the Texas dream, every woman and man who worry about their children’s future and their ability to provide for that future. I care about life and I have a record of fighting for people above all else.”

And through fighting payday lending, insurance abuses, and for education, health care and transparent use of the state’s Enterprise Fund, Davis said she hopes voters will see her record speaks for itself. http://www.valleymorningstar.com/news/local_news/article_5374c1f2-469e-11e3-bc9f-001a4bcf6878.html

Left

The Left Fights Back. This weekend’s massive protest in North Carolina shows that the GOP doesn’t own morality. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2014/02/moral_march_on_raleigh_how_the_moral_mondays_movement_is_redefining_the.html

Occupy Wall Street

San Diego City Council To Vote On $60,000 Settlement For Occupy Protestor. http://www.kpbs.org/news/2013/dec/09/occupy-protestor-win-60000-settlement-city-san-die/

Occupy Wall Street activists buy $15m of Americans' personal debt. Rolling Jubilee spent $400,000 to purchase debt cheaply from banks before 'abolishing' it, freeing individuals from their bills. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/nov/12/occupy-wall-street-activists-15m-personal-debt

As It Spied on Occupy Wall Street, Department of Homeland Security Fixated on Media Coverage http://wallstreetonparade.com/2013/04/as-it-spied-on-occupy-wall-street-department-of-homeland-security-fixated-on-media-coverage/

NYPD lied under oath to prosecute Occupy activist. http://rt.com/usa/nypd-occupy-michael-premo-703/

Feds Say Man Deserved Arrest Because Jacket Said ‘Occupy Everything’ http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2013/03/man-deserved-arrest/

Republicanism is a Mental Disease

Meet Your New Craziest Republicans. http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/11/05/1342284/-Meet-your-new-Craziest-Republicans

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_federal_government_shutdown_of_2013#End_of_shutdown_and_temporary_debt_limit_suspension

Are You a J. Crew Democrat or a Pizza Hut Republican? http://time.com/3559482/stores-politics/#57

when the new, GOP-controlled Senate opens its first session next January, it will be strikingly unrepresentative of the voters who elected its members. A ThinkProgress review of the electoral results from 2010, 2012 and 2014 Senate races reveals that millions more Americans actually cast a vote for a Democratic Senate candidate than voted for a Republican candidate during the three election cycles that built the incoming Senate. For 2010 and 2012, we relied on official tallies of the total votes cast in all Senate races released by the Federal Elections Commission. Those results show that Republican Senate candidates outperformed Democrats by 2,733,121 votes in 2010, while Democrats outperformed Republicans by a much larger 10,867,709 votes in 2012. http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2014/11/05/3589157/millions-more-votes-were-cast-for-democrats-in-the-incoming-senate-than-for-republicans/

Tea Party Endorsed Candidates - US House. http://www.irehr.org/issue-areas/tea-party-nationalism/tea-party-news-and-analysis/610-tea-party-election-2014

If you believe in one-party rule, Republicans are for you. If you believe in government by and for the wealthy and corporate special interests, Republicans are for you. http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/11/03/1341253/-Perhaps-the-biggest-difference-between-Republicans-and-Democrats

In short, guns are much more likely to be used to kill or injure people than to maintain any semblance of actual order. Roving gangs of heavily armed white dudes are not going to be the solution to any national crises. Try shooting Ebola or “social unrest.” But don’t expect the NRA to ease up on the fearmongering. How do you debate people who literally believe ISIS might be sneaking over the border, knives in hand, and the only way to prevent them from killing your family is to stock up on guns and ammo? You can’t.” With elections right around the corner, the NRA is trying their damndest to translate terror into victory in the ballot box. And considering how far to the right groups like the NRA are already pushing the national agenda, it’s only going to get worse. Read more at http://thedailybanter.com/2014/11/wayne-lapierre-trys-mobilizes-base-going-full-crazy/#lfLdxmpOZf0hItiJ.99

By voting for me, you will be voting for yourself. I'm here to serve you- the people of El Cajon. I'm not here to lie to you or make campaign promises. I'm here to help make our city, the city of El Cajon, the best place to live and work. I believe in lower taxes and more jobs. To achieve my goals, I will seek out existing and new companies to help in creating more jobs in El Cajon. By creating jobs it will help our tax base and will decrease our taxes. I support and believe in small businesses because it's the small businesses that grow into major corporations and help to create more jobs as they grow. http://www.thejonathanwright.com/index.php

“I heard Nixon speak. He was talking about free enterprise, getting government off your back, lowering taxes and strengthening the military. Listening to Nixon speak sounded more like a breath of fresh air. I said to my friend, "What party is he?" My friend said, "He's a Republican." I said, "Then I am a Republican!"” Arnold Schwarzenegger quotes (Austrian born American Actor and Governor, b.1947) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f9HtoWea72A

Kashkari compared Brown’s move to Watergate. "A lifetime of public service for Richard Nixon has been overshadowed by one terrible decision he made at the end of his presidency," he says. "Jerry Brown has had a lifetime of public service. But when the neediest kids of California, black and brown kids, ask him for help, he didn’t help them. He fought them, he betrayed them. And I’m going to make sure everyone in California knows what he’s done." Kashkari admitted Brown had not done anything criminal in appealing the teacher tenure ruling. "But betraying needy kids who are begging for a fair chance at a good education? It may as well be criminal," he says. In a statement, the Brown campaign says Kashkari’s ad would be funny if it weren’t so "offensive and disturbing." http://www.capradio.org/articles/2014/10/21/kashkari-steps-up-attacks-on-brown/

Ted Nugent called for "freedom" or the "evil carcasses" of President Obama and other progressive politicians in a Facebook post where he told followers to support the National Rifle Association and discredited gun advocate John Lott's Crime Prevention Research Center. http://mediamatters.org/blog/2014/10/14/nras-ted-nugent-calls-for-the-evil-carcasses-of/201154

OCTOBER 13--Today marks the tenth anniversary of the filing of the greatest lawsuit ever. On this date in 2004, Bill O’Reilly was accused of sexual harassment by Andrea Mackris, an associate producer who worked with the TV host at Fox News Channel. Mackris’s New York State Supreme Court complaint is bursting with examples of the 65-year-old O’Reilly’s alleged sleaziness (which apparently was surreptitiously memorialized via Mackris’s tape recorder). The lawsuit was settled within two weeks and the parties agreed to confidentiality provisions intended to shroud O’Reilly’s purportedly pervy ways. The legal settlement reportedly included a fat check for the 43-year-old Mackris, who said that O’Reilly could be “paternal and engaging” and then “tyrannical and menacing.” http://www.thesmokinggun.com/documents/oreilly/bill-oreilly-falafel-lawsuit-turns-ten-897562

during this cycle, Republican crazy just hasn’t broken through at all. It’s almost as if the national press has just come to accept as normal the degree to which the GOP has moved dramatically to the right. At this point so many prominent Republicans have said insane things that after a while they go by with barely a notice. This is an era when a prominent Republican governor who wants to be president can muse about the possibility that his state might secede from the union, when the most popular radio host in the country suggests that liberals like Barack Obama want Ebola to come to America to punish us for slavery, and when the President of the United States had to show his birth certificate to prove that he isn’t a foreigner. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2014/10/10/how-the-media-has-helped-normalize-gop-crazy/?tid=rssfeed

The Other Congressional Races in San Diego: The 50th’s Duncan Hunter, Best Party Animal on Capitol Hill http://sandiegofreepress.org/2014/10/the-other-congressional-races-in-san-diego-the-50ths-duncan-hunter-best-party-animal-on-capitol-hill/ http://www.washingtonian.com/articles/people/the-best-worst-of-congress-2014/ http://www.rollcall.com/issues/56_11/-48646-1.html?pg=2&dczone=news

Rove has never cared about conservatism and has spent his entire career opposing any Republican who might be successful in promoting or implementing a conservative agenda. Rove belongs to the same tradition of moderates who fought Barry Goldwater in 1964, who pushed back against Ronald Reagan in 1976 and did everything they could to stop Reagan again in 1980. They said Reagan would be a disaster for the party and even the country. Today, Reagan is one of the most well-remembered American presidents and remains the standard-bearer for what it means to be a conservative Republican, popularizing a small government message that GOP moderates said was too extreme to resonate with voters. As with Rove’s predictions about Mitt Romney’s chances in 2012, GOP moderates couldn’t have been more wrong about Reagan. Rove and his ilk have opposed every significant conservative leader who has ever dared to challenge liberal or moderate Republican orthodoxy. A history lesson: Moderates wanted Gerald Ford and then George H.W. Bush over Ronald Reagan in 1976 and 1980. Similarly, Karl Rove and his friends wanted Arlen Specter over Pat Toomey in 2010. They wanted Charlie Crist over Marco Rubio in 2010. They wanted David Dewhurst over Ted Cruz in 2012. Karl Rove kneecapped tea party candidates in 2010. He called Rick Perry’s policy prescriptions, many which have had great success in Texas, “toxic.” Rove said Sarah Palin lacked “gravitas.” He has said Rand Paul “causes GOP squeamishness.” And what does he think about conservatives in general? He’s called us the Republican Party’s “nutty fringe.” Read more: http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2014/10/karl-rove-is-ruining-the-gop-111674.html#ixzz3Fay4Hr39

Wake up, America! While everyone is up in arms about Ebola, and we must remain vigilant and fight it with all we have, there is another virus that has already taken hold of Americans in every state: liberalism. Truth, transparency, freedom and liberty. The flag, "Under God" patriotism have all been tossed out the window. They are being replaced by "everybody gets a trophy," "share the wealth," "government knows what's best for your business," your family and even what should go on in your bedroom. Be careful, America. Liberalism is a dangerous virus. [...] Wake up, America. Liberalism is a virus, too. Try not to catch it. And if you do, for goodness sake, don't spread it!! http://mediamatters.org/blog/2014/10/06/foxs-bolling-calls-liberalism-a-dangerous-virus/201037

If GOP is so right, why are red states so far behind? Read more here: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2014/09/03/238428_leonard-pitts-jr-if-gop-is-so.html

Why Do Newspapers Keep Publishing Op-Eds by John McCain? Looking back at the Arizona senator's track record, it's hard to see why anyone still treats him as a source of insight into what will happen next in geopolitics. http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2014/09/why-do-newspapers-keep-publishing-op-eds-by-john-mccain/379512/

As a candidate in the 51st Congressional District, Stephen Meade's politics are a problem. He's a conservative Republican in a district where voter registration is more than 2-to-1 Democratic. The district is 70% Latino, but Meade does not speak Spanish. He has no money to campaign. And his opponent, Democratic Rep. Juan Vargas, has the power of incumbency. There's another thing that may make things difficult for the 88-year-old political novice: He wears women's clothing. "I'm straight, but I just have this thing about loving ladies' clothes," Meade said. http://www.latimes.com/local/education/la-me-pol-candidate-20140901-story.html

Perry said he wants to scrap the federal Departments of Commerce, Education, and Energy (even though that last one eluded him for a while). http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/rick-perry-wants-scrap-three-government-departments-mean-212919120.html

Ask Andrew W.K.: My Dad Is a Right-Wing Asshole http://blogs.villagevoice.com/music/2014/08/ask_andrew_wk_right_wing_dad.php

Ronald Kessler Q: Does a recent book quote Secret Service agents saying denigrating things about Obama and other recent Democratic presidents while praising only Republicans? A: No. The book's author, Ronald Kessler, states that a viral e-mail's descriptions of Obama and Clinton "are completely wrong." His book quotes both flattering and unflattering observations about presidents of both parties. http://www.factcheck.org/2011/06/secret-service-tattletales/

Music Industry Experts Say Ted Nugent's Ongoing Diatribes Damaging Concert Promotion. http://mediamatters.org/blog/2014/07/25/music-industry-experts-say-ted-nugents-ongoing/200209

At Some Point, Progressives Need to Grow a Pair and Stop Having Anything To Do With the Democratic Party. http://rall.com/2014/07/03/syndicated-column-at-some-point-progressives-need-to-grow-a-pair-and-stop-having-anything-to-do-with-the-democratic-party

“Can you imagine all the things Kreep’s done, and he’s sitting in judgment on your behavior?” Thompson said. “It’s almost crazy that he’s signing judgments to make other people pay when he won’t pay his own. Something’s got to be wrong that he can do this.” http://www.sdcitybeat.com/sandiego/article-13133-judge-gary-kreep-overcharged-former-client-thousands-of-dollars.html

'Being On The Wrong Side Of Dick Cheney Is Being On The Right Side Of History' http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/18/harry-reid-dick-cheney_n_5507113.html

Republican Mitt Romney criticized President Barack Obama's handling of foreign policy, telling financial backers at his annual conference Friday that everything the nation fought for during the lengthy Iraq war could vanish. The 2012 Republican presidential nominee said at the start of his annual ideas summit at a luxurious Utah resort that the foreign policy agenda pushed by Obama, his former rival, Vice President Joe Biden and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has been a "monumental bust." "Tragically, all we've fought for in Iraq, all that 4,500 American lives were shed to gain, is on the cusp, potentially, of vanishing," Romney said. Romney added his voice to a number of Republicans who have accused Obama of being slow to respond in Iraq following the capture of two cities by an al-Qaida inspired militant group and concerns it could push toward Baghdad. He spoke shortly before Obama told reporters from the South Lawn that he was weighing a range of options to halt the violent Islamic insurgency. In his 15-minute address to about 300 former campaign donors and supporters, Romney pointed to a number of global hot spots, noting that Syria is in its third year of civil war, North Korea has carried out nuclear missile tests and Russia has captured Crimea. The conference is expected to include speeches by a number of potential 2016 Republican presidential candidates, including Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, Romney's running mate; New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie; Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul; and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee. Romney has quietly worked to develop a kingmaker status in the Republican party's effort to capture a majority in the Senate this fall and win back the White House in 2016. "I lost the election. We lost the election," Romney said. "But I and we will continue to fight." http://bigstory.ap.org/article/romney-all-us-fought-iraq-could-vanish

Cantor loss sparks GOP frenzy. The jockeying among Republicans to replace Rep. Eric Cantor (Va.) as House majority leader began Wednesday within hours of his stunning primary loss. The No. 3 Republican, Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), is expected to seek Cantor’s post as majority leader, the second-ranking post behind Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio). http://thehill.com/homenews/house/208983-cantor-loss-sparks-gop-frenzy

During the George W. Bush period, there were 13 attacks on various embassies and consulates around the world. Sixty people died. http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2014/may/12/john-garamendi/prior-benghazi-were-there-13-attacks-embassies-and/

Utah ATV protest peaceful; BLM unhappy. http://durangoherald.com/article/20140510/NEWS01/140519967/-1/s/Utah-ATV-protest-peaceful-

Republicanism is a Mental Disease archived May 10, 2014

Ted Cruz, the reckless accuser. Sen. Ted Cruz, in a speech to fellow conservatives at the Federalist Society this week, provided detailed evidence of what the right calls the “lawlessness” of the Obama administration. The Texas Republican, in his latest McCar­thyesque flourish, said he had a list of “76 instances of lawlessness and other abuses of power.” http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/dana-milbank-ted-cruzs-dirty-laundry-list-of-lawlessness/2014/05/09/70bb03d8-d7b3-11e3-8a78-8fe50322a72c_story.html

Sarah Palin: "Waterboarding Is How We Baptize Terrorists" http://gawker.com/sarah-palin-waterboarding-is-how-we-baptize-terrorist-1568887569

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/2014/0420/Nevada-range-war-Western-states-move-to-take-over-federal-land

A rancher's armed battle against the US government is standard libertarian fare. Cliven Bundy's standoff with the BLM is over a paltry monthly grazing fee. But it's also over more - the idea of the public interest. http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/apr/19/cliven-bundy-nevada-blm-libertarian

'Wake up America,' says family involved in BLM cattle dispute. A federal judge in Las Vegas first ordered Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy to remove his trespassing cattle in 1998, according to reports from the Associated Press. Similar orders were issued in July 2013, and again in October. Saturday, the BLM began taking some of the 908 cattle from Bundy. The BLM says Bundy's cattle have been trespassing on U.S. land without required grazing permits for over 25 years. However, Bundy said he doesn't recognize federal authority on land that he says belongs to the state of Nevada. The BLM released a statement on its website saying, "Cattle have been in trespass on public lands in Southern Nevada for more than two decades. This is unfair to the thousands of other ranchers who graze livestock in compliance with federal laws and regulations throughout the west. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the National Park Service (NPS) have made repeated attempts to resolve this matter administratively and judicially." The situation escalated Saturday after Cliven Bundy's son, Dave Bundy, 37, was arrested. Members of the Bundy family had gathered to film and take pictures of the removal of their cattle in an effort to document the event, according to Cliven Bundy's daughter, Bailey Bundy Logue. The family members had parked on the side of Nevada state Route 170, but the highway was included in the temporary closure of public lands, according to BLM representative Kirsten Cannon. Dave Bundy was arrested and cited with a criminal charge of refusing to disperse and resisting officers. Cannon said all public lands are closed within the designated closure area during the removal of the trespassing cattle. Read more at http://www.ksl.com/?nid=148&sid=29387272

Fox Champions Bundy Supporters Who Threatened Violence Against Federal Agents. Bundy Supporter: "We Were Actually Strategizing To Put All The Women Up At The Front" http://mediamatters.org/research/2014/04/18/fox-champions-bundy-supporters-who-threatened-v/198947

Glenn Beck worked the crowd like a preacher at a rally this month in Louisville, Ky., declaring that God had responded to conservatives’ prayers by sending a slate of tea party candidates to wrest control of the Republican Party from Mitch McConnell. But there was a more earthly benefit to the arrangement that brought Beck to the rally. It was organized by the tea party nonprofit group FreedomWorks, which had endorsed the candidates — and which has paid more than $6 million in recent years to have Beck promote the group, its initiatives and events. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/04/16/ansel-adams-manzanar_n_5155579.html

The president's power grab. Obama is not a dictator, but there is a danger in his aggregation of executive power. http://www.latimes.com/opinion/commentary/la-oe-turley-obama-separation-of-powers-20140309,0,5262266.story

The words "subhuman mongrel," which Ted Nugent called President Barack Obama, were used by the Nazis to "justify the genocide of the Jewish community." Wolf Blitzer: Ted Nugent used Nazi terminology, 'subhuman mongrel,' to describe President Barack Obama. http://www.politifact.com/punditfact/statements/2014/feb/18/wolf-blitzer/wolf-blitzer-ted-nugent-used-nazi-terminology-subh/

While Ted Nugent's reference to President Barack Obama as a "subhuman mongrel" has received strong criticism from all corners of the media and political landscape, two major organizations with key ties to Nugent -- the National Rifle Association (NRA) and The Outdoor Channel -- have yet to weigh in on the controversy. Nugent is an NRA board member and perhaps the group's most-well known public advocate. He serves as a spokesman for the Outdoor Channel, where he also hosts a hunting show. Last month, Nugent told Guns.com that President Obama is a "subhuman mongrel" and argued that he and other liberal politicians should be punished for treason. The offensive remark drew new attention this past week after Nugent was scheduled to appear at a campaign event with Texas Republican gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott. http://mediamatters.org/blog/2014/02/21/nra-and-outdoor-channel-silent-on-spokesman-nug/198172

Issa rails against Obama's 'imperial presidency'. The Republican congressman spearheading investigations of President Barack Obama's administration by the GOP-run House urged his party Tuesday to unite against Obama's "imperial presidency". At the same time, Rep. Darrell Issa of California questioned former the leadership abilities of former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. Issa heads the House Overight and Government Reform Committee, and in this role has led a host of investigations into administration controversies. Issa's remarks came as he made a rare New Hampshire tour, telling audiences he's not interested in running for the White House. http://news.yahoo.com/issa-rails-against-obama-39-39-imperial-presidency-072739075--election.html

http://www.kpbs.org/news/2014/feb/14/boehner-fights-back-against-tea-party-again/

Here Are All The Republicans Who Voted To Avoid A Potential Economic Calamity. http://www.businessinsider.com/who-voted-to-raise-debt-ceiling-republicans-2014-2#ixzz2t56YMOI0

The House passed a clean debt-ceiling suspension on Tuesday — a vote that alienated dozens of Republicans and led some conservative groups to call for the removal of Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio) as Speaker. The bill was approved in a 221-201 vote, largely on the backs of Democrats. Only 28 Republicans voted for it, while 199 voted against. http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/house/198132-house-approves-clean-debt-ceiling-bill

A rare look inside the Koch brothers political empire. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2014/02/05/a-rare-look-inside-the-koch-brothers-political-empire/

Study: Watching Fox News Makes You Less Informed Than Watching No News. http://www.slate.com/blogs/business_insider/2014/01/30/does_watching_fox_news_make_you_less_informed.html

Congressman who threatened reporter on TV is Marine veteran. “What?” Mr. Scotto said. Before he could explain that he was just trying to ask him a question, Mr. Grimm became unhinged. “Let me be clear to you,” he said in a low voice, before using a profanity and warning that he would hurl Mr. Scotto from the balcony. There is some cross talk between the two men which was not audible on the video before Mr. Grimm concluded with an insult and another threat. “No, no, you’re not man enough, you’re not man enough,” he said. “I’ll break you in half. Like a boy.” Rep. Michael Grimm is in the right. You push to hard, we as Marines will push back harder! That reporter should have known his place and been respect full and great full that he got an interview in the first place at all. I support u Rep. Michael Grimm, Semper Fi Brother. As much as I support former marines (myself included) and respect the service/sacrifice that he has made, I think he was 100% wrong in threatening the reporter. That’s not how problems get solved. Rep Grimm is under investigation by the FBI, it’s not a rumor or unsubstantiated investigation. He should have expected that this sort of question could come up and even if he was ambushed by the reporter, he could have and should have handled it differently. If you get off track we marines will put you back on track . What’s the problem? Violence is the best solution to every problem. Grimm told the interviewer on NY1’s Inside City Hall that Allegretti “sleep[s] under a blanket of freedom that I helped provide… you should just say thank you.” The original line, said by Jack Nicholson’s Colonel Jessep to Tom Cruise’s Lieutenant Kaffee in the film, was that Kaffee “sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom I provide, then questions the manner in which I provide it. I’d prefer you just said ‘thank you’ and went on your way.” When I kill you you will be safe! The problem is that we don't have enough violence. People need to be thankful for the violence we provide to make the world safer for violence. http://blogs.militarytimes.com/battle-rattle/2014/01/29/congressman-who-threatened-reporter-on-tv-is-marine-veteran/

Republican Congressman threatens to kill reporter after State of the Union. Congressman Michael Grimm (R-NY/Staten Island) felt a little tense after the State of the Union. After giving a terse statement to an NY1 reporter, he was asked about the ongoing issue of his campaign finance. He declined to discuss the matter and stormed off, then returned a moment later, apparently unaware that the camera was still rolling, and threatened to "throw [the reporter] off this fucking balcony." Grimm followed this with "you're not man enough, you're not man enough. I'll break you in half. Like a boy." Grimm is a former US Marine who served in Iraq, and then worked for the FBI. While at the Bureau, he was investigated for abusing his authority: threatening his date's husband ("I'll fucking make him disappear where nobody will find him") and pulling a gun in a nightclub. Grimm argued that reports of the incident were a "witch hunt" but the NYPD and FBi refused to release their files on the matter, and the New Yorker reporter who wrote the original story produced supplemental documents supporting his account. Grimm is a Tea Party darling who was endorsed by Sarah Palin and Rudy Giuliani. http://boingboing.net/2014/01/28/republican-congressman-threate.html#more-283536

If millionaires in the United States formed their own political party, that party would make up just 3 percent of the country, but it would have a majority in the House of Representatives, a filibuster-proof super-majority in the Senate, a 5 to 4 majority on the Supreme Court and a man in the White House. If working-class Americans — people with manual-labor and service-industry jobs — were a political party, that party would have made up more than half of the country since the start of the 20th century, but its legislators (those who last worked in blue-collar jobs before getting into politics) would never have held more than 2 percent of the seats in Congress. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/monkey-cage/wp/2014/01/07/millionaires-run-our-government-heres-why-that-matters/

The most unproductive and least popular US Congress in history can count on another distinction: For the first time ever, most members of the Legislative Branch are millionaires. At least 268 of the 534 current members of the 113th US Congress have an average net worth of US$1 million or more, according to personal financial disclosure data members registered last year on 2012 net worth, the Center for Responsive Politics reported Thursday. Republican Darrell Issa, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, is the richest member of Congress, with a net worth of $464 million in 2012. http://rt.com/usa/us-congress-millionaire-investments-392/

Why I fled libertarianism — and became a liberal. I was a Ron Paul delegate back in 2008 -- now I'm a Democrat. Here's my personal tale of disgust and self-discovery. I don’t want to gloss over the good things about libertarians. They are generally supportive of the gay community, completely behind marijuana legalization and are often against ill-considered foreign wars, but a few good ideas don’t make up for some spectacularly bad ones. Their saving grace is a complete lack of organizational ability, which is why they are always trying to take over the Republican Party, rather than create a party of their own. http://www.salon.com/2013/12/28/why_i_fled_libertarianism_and_became_a_liberal/

Darrell Issa Hid The Truth About Benghazi For a Year While Attacking President Obama. Issa has wasted taxpayer time and money for three years looking for Obama Administration scandals he subsequently never found, including the tragic deaths of 4 American diplomats in Benghazi Libya on September 11 2012. Issa’s scandalous investigations aside, it was revealed yesterday that an extensive investigation into the attack on the diplomatic outpost that claimed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three diplomats’ lives found no involvement of al-Qaeda or other international terrorists groups whatsoever like Republicans have claimed for over a year. Instead, the attack was precipitated by, as first reported, extremist Christians in the United States. A lengthy and comprehensive New York Times investigation informed what Republicans are desperate to keep under wraps because it revealed the Benghazi attack was “accelerated in part by anger at a U.S.-made video denigrating Islam.” The report parroted what any American with half-a-mind has known since Republicans began their relentless propaganda campaign that the Obama administration attempted to cover up al-Qaeda’s alleged role in the attack. According to the chairman of the House Intelligent Committee, Republican Mike Rogers, who kept the al-Qaeda meme alive last month on Fox News, “It was very clear to the individuals on the ground that this was an al-Qaeda-led event.” http://www.politicususa.com/2013/12/29/darrell-issa-hid-truth-benghazi-year-attacking-president-obama.html http://www.nytimes.com/projects/2013/benghazi/?hp#/?chapt=0

The war on bicycles. 4. WSJ Editorial Board Member: New York City's Bike Share Program Part Of "Totalitarian" Plot. With a straight face, Wall Street Journal Editorial Board member Dorothy Rabinowitz said that bicyclists were the "most important danger" facing New York City, and raged against bike share programs that are pursued by the "all powerful" "bike lobby" emboldened by "totalitarians." She emphasizes that "the city is helpless" before the driven ambitions of its "autocratic" mayor. Rabinowitz's overly hyped attack of a bike-share program attracted criticism, notably from Comedy Central's The Daily Show. However, Rabinowitz stuck by her attack, saying the bike racks are "instruments of aesthetic torture" and told a bicyclist who asked her a question to instead ask "the therapist we hope this biker is consulting." http://mediamatters.org/blog/2013/12/23/8-most-absurd-attacks-on-clean-tech-in-2013/197306

House GOP:
47 Votes to Repeal Obamacare
44 Abortion Bills
99 Religion Bills
36 Marriage Bills
0 Jobs Bills

Conservatives’ new enemy: Bikes. The bicycle is emerging as a new conservative front in the culture wars. http://www.bostonglobe.com/ideas/2013/12/15/conservatives-new-enemy-bikes/NoLMjnocHg28jZ4hw3F4oI/story.html

EL CAJON, Calif. - Some members of the local Middle Eastern community are outraged over the controversial comments made on C-SPAN by local Rep. Duncan D. Hunter (R-50th District). "In the Middle Eastern culture, it is looked upon with very high regard to get the best deal possible, no matter what it takes, that includes lying," Hunter said in an interview that aired Monday. 10News showed two minutes of the interview to Ben Kalasho, president of the newly formed San Diego-East County Chaldean American Chamber Of Commerce. "It's not in good taste at all. I think a lot of people will take offense to that, especially that he's an elected official," said Kalasho, who is a Democrat running for the vacant El Cajon City Council seat. Kalasho said the East County is home to more than 80,000 Middle Easterners, and he believes Hunter should not make these generalizations, especially when many of his own constituents are from the Middle East. http://www.10news.com/news/some-local-middle-easterners-outraged-comments-made-by-congressman-duncan-d-hunter

http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/DuncanH

A hawkish House Republican says the United States should use tactical nuclear weapons to destroy Iranian nuclear facilities if war with the Islamic republic becomes necessary. House Armed Services Committee member Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., threw down that bold gauntlet Wednesday morning during a C-SPAN interview in which he also suggested Middle East “culture” fosters dishonest negotiators. Asked if war with Iran is inevitable, Hunter replied: “I sure as Hell hope not.” But if push came to shove and US officials deemed strikes necessary, Hunter turned hawkish. He said any American strike would be a “massive aerial bombing campaign,” adding that such a mission should not feature any “boots on ground.” Then, Hunter said the US should use its “tactical nuclear weapons” on Iranian targets. Hunter also slammed the recent preliminary pact between Tehran and the UN Security Council, under which Iran has agreed to cease some nuclear activities in return for sanctions relief and facility inspections. “Iran has to do nothing,” Hunter said, saying the Obama administration intends to merely “pray Iran will act differently” than its various leaders have “for the last 40 years.” Echoing other congressional Republicans and conservative pundits, Hunter said the White House and other Security Council nations erred in inking a preliminary Iran deal that allows Tehran to enrich any uranium. Hunter said Iranian officials are “not trustworthy,” then said all Middle Easterners — due to their “culture” — cannot be trusted at the negotiating table. “It is part of the Middle East culture” to “do anything you can … to get the best deal,” Hunter said. Asked by a C-SPAN host if he believes all Middle Easterners are liars, Hunter did not directly discount the notion. The conservative HASC member also accused, citing the Iran deal, the Obama administration of “making friends with our former enemies” while purposely distancing America from longtime allies in the region like Saudi Arabia. http://www.militarytimes.com/article/20131204/NEWS05/312040013

Eight Tea Party Morons Destroying America. http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/pictures/eight-tea-party-morons-destroying-america-20131008

3 Secret Plaintiffs File 5 Court Requests to Block Latest John Doe Probe in Wisconsin. http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/11/19/1256802/-3-Secret-Plaitiffs-File-5-Court-Requests-to-Block-Latest-John-Doe-Probe-in-Wisconsin

More problems for Rand Paul. http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/11/08/1254153/-More-problems-for-Rand-Paul

How the Tea Party’s Apocalyptic Politics Are Destroying the Republican Party. by Joe McLean Nov 11, 2013 5:45 AM EST. Leaders of the Tea Party are willing to wreck the Republican Party, the government, and the economy to prove that Obama is evil and God is on their side. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/11/11/how-the-tea-party-s-apocalyptic-politics-are-destroying-the-republican-party.html

Meet The 37 House Republicans Who Could Lose Their Jobs For Shutting Down The Government. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/24/house-republicans-2014-elections_n_4152818.html

Rep. Hunter, when are you going to start making those hard choices? Cutting a bloated military budget and raising taxes on corporations and the wealthy to cover guaranteed entitlements and education. When are you going to tell your sacred Republican Party that every day they block a real budget it continues to weaken the US economy and damages the United States’ credit around the globe? It is certainly true that the budget is a political statement but playing politics with the budget has detrimental consequences. So Rep. Hunter, are you aware of the consequences? http://eastcountymagazine.org/node/14216

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/17/rachel-maddow-shutdown-republican-chart_n_4114662.html

Addressing the differences between his own Democratic Party and the GOP, Obama urged lawmakers on both side of the aisle Thursday to no longer let partisan issues polarize Congress to such a degree that catastrophe occurs. “I understand we will not suddenly agree on everything now that the cloud of crisis has passed. Democrats and Republicans are far apart on a lot of issues, and I recognize there are folks on the other side who think my policies are misguided. That’s putting it mildly. That’s okay. That’s democracy. That’s how it works. We can debate those differences, vigorously, passionately, in good faith, through the normal democratic process. And some times, we’ll be just two far apart to forget an agreement. But that should not hold back our efforts in areas where we do agree. We shouldn’t fail to act on areas that we do agree or could agree just because we don’t think it’s good politics. Just because the extremes in our party don’t like the word “compromise.” I will look for willing partners wherever I can to get important work done. And there’s no good reason why we can’t govern responsibly, despite our differences, without lurching from manufactured crisis to manufactured crisis,” Obama said. http://rt.com/usa/obama-reopen-government-address-315/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/30835791@N07/sets/72157614241935013/

House Roll Call: Vote to end govt shutdown. http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/House-Roll-Call-Vote-to-end-govt-shutdown-4902272.php#page-1

Senate vote on ending shutdown, raising debt limit. http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/Senate-vote-on-ending-shutdown-raising-debt-limit-4902100.php

32 Republicans Who Caused the Government Shutdown. Meet the House conservative hardliners. http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2013/10/32-republicans-who-caused-the-government-shutdown/280236/

Some of Rush Limbaugh's thoughts about the GOP's surrender on the shutdown and the debt ceiling: "I was trying to think if ever in my life, I could remember any major political party being so irrelevant. I have never seen it. I have never seen a major political party simply occupy placeholders, as the Republican party has been doing. There has not been any serious opposition...against what's happening in this country. The Republicans have done everything they can to try to make everyone like them and what they've ended up doing is creating one of the greatest political disasters I've ever seen in my lifetime...I was pondering if I could ever remember...a time when a political party just made a decision not to exist, for all intents and purposes." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/16/rush-limbaugh-gop-shutdown-disaster-exist_n_4109640.html

Vitter, a Louisiana Republican, has infuriated Democrats this week by commandeering the Senate floor, demanding a vote on his amendment repealing federal contributions to help pay for lawmakers’ health care coverage. But Democratic senators are preparing a legislative response targeting a sordid Vitter episode. If Vitter continues to insist on a vote on his proposal, Democrats could counter with one of their own: Lawmakers will be denied those government contributions if there is “probable cause” they solicited prostitutes. Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2013/09/david-vitter-obamacare-democrats-secret-weapon-96744.html

Reid released emails last week in which the Speaker asked for help in protecting the benefits for people working on Capitol Hill while publicly supporting legislation to end the subsidies. His public posturing was pandering to outside conservative critics. It is a low moment for the Speaker. Boehner’s tenure has left Republicans in Congress with a 17 percent approval rating in the latest Quinnipiac poll, the lowest in history. Democrats have now jumped to a 9-point lead when voters are asked which party they are more likely to support in the next congressional election. History will also make note of that. Juan Williams is an author and political analyst for Fox News Channel. Read more: http://thehill.com/opinion/columnists/juan-williams/326823-opinion-boehner-is-leader-in-name-only

Seven Habits of Highly Ineffective Political Parties. When it comes to major policy battles, since 2009 the GOP is 0-3. Before it fails again, David Frum offers up seven ways the party is shooting itself in the foot. - See more at: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/10/08/seven-habits-of-highly-ineffective-political-parties-part-one.html

Five Boehner Quotes—From One Interview—That Explain Everything. Wonder why the government is still shuttered? You may have missed this interview, in which the speaker issued talking points from another dimension. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/10/07/five-boehner-quotes-from-one-interview-that-explain-everything.html

19 Times Democrats Tried to Negotiate With RepublicansThe GOP's biggest talking point of the shutdown is only true if you ignore everything that happened before last week. http://www.nationaljournal.com/congress/19-times-democrats-tried-to-negotiate-with-republicans-20131007

Why the U.S. government is shut down: 5 theories from abroad Our friends overseas can only watch in awe as Congress implodes. http://theweek.com/article/index/250623/why-the-us-government-is-shut-down-five-theories-from-abroad

The GOP's Obamacare Suicide. With a main component of the health care law kicking in and proving popular, the Republicans' fundamental narrative—that government is the problem—could take a major hit. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2013/10/obamacare-gop-shutdown

Tea party agenda may be ascendant on Hill, but not on Main Street Support for the tea party among Americans has slipped to 22 percent, a Gallup poll shows. Even as tea party politics (and a possible government shutdown) are center stage in Congress, the survey reflects public dissatisfaction with the tea party's push for conflict over compromise. http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/DC-Decoder/Decoder-Wire/2013/0926/Tea-party-agenda-may-be-ascendant-on-Hill-but-not-on-Main-Street

According to new data, Palin’s political action committee spends more than it makes—and burns most of its cash on consultants’ fees. But contributors tell Ben Jacobs they couldn’t care less. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/08/02/sarah-palin-s-donors-don-t-care-where-money-s-going.html

Hatetriot's Day: July 4th Is America's Crappiest Holiday. http://gawker.com/hatetriots-day-july-4th-is-americas-crappiest-holida-631149319

Moral Monday. http://www.indyweek.com/citizen/archives/2013/05/24/scenes-from-moral-monday-at-the-general-assembly-monday-june-3-should-be-the-biggest-yet

Art Pope-funded group launches database targeting Moral Monday arrestees http://www.southernstudies.org/2013/06/art-pope-funded-group-launches-database-targeting-.html

The reason there are leakers is precisely because the govt is filled with people like Dianne Feinstein who do horrendous things in secret. http://www.politico.com/story/2013/06/glenn-greenwald-us-privacy-92400.html?hp=l1

http://www.ivyleagueexorcist.blogspot.com/2012/07/jack-chick-parody-tract-used-to-promote.html

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RICK PERRY CONTROVERSY: Sacramento Bee’s JACK OHMAN ‘stunned’ by governor’s response to his hot-button cartoon http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/comic-riffs/post/rick-perry-controversy-sacramento-bees-jack-ohman-stunned-by-governors-response-to-his-hot-button-cartoon/2013/04/29/3e9245ca-b116-11e2-baf7-5bc2a9dc6f44_blog.html

Kathleen Taylor, Neuroscientist, Says Religious Fundamentalism Could Be Treated As A Mental Illness. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/31/kathleen-taylor-religious-fundamentalism-mental-illness_n_3365896.html?utm_hp_ref=mostpopular

Letters: How does GOP expect the rest of us to achieve the American Dream? http://www.freep.com/article/20130511/OPINION/305110028/Letters-How-does-GOP-expect-rest-us-achieve-American-Dream-

Greg Ball, New York State Senator, On Boston Suspect: 'Who Wouldn't Use Torture On This Punk'? http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/20/greg-ball-torture_n_3122524.html

Bob Perry: a Good Republican http://www.politico.com/story/2013/04/bob-perry-gop-donor-dies-90059.html

http://www.npr.org/2013/03/15/174383207/at-cpac-gop-makes-push-for-young-voters

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http://www.buzzfeed.com/copyranter/durex-compares-the-candidates-imagined-penis-sizes

A columnist for conservative site the National Review Online has written a piece suggesting female soldiers who have been raped struggle after they leave the military because of their own bad decisions. Heather Mac Donald wrote the piece Thursday as a rebuttal of sorts to The New York Times' in-depth feature on military sexual trauma, which was published Wednesday. In its piece, The Times describes the pain of veterans, such as Tiffany Jackson, who was raped by a fellow service member in South Korea and has since struggled with homelessness, addiction and depression. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/01/national-review-columnist-veterans-raped-bad-decision-making_n_2791850.html

“It kills me not to be there, not to be in the White House doing what needs to be done,” Romney told Wallace. “The president is the leader of the nation. The president knocks the heads together; the president leads. We are at war with liberals and moderates and I don't see that kind of leadership happening right now.” He blames the infamous “47 percent” he said it is what he believes. http://www.thedailybeast.com/cheats/2013/03/03/romney-convinced-we-d-win.html http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-romney-criticizes-obama-20130303,0,6867614.story

Republicans love Republicans. Republicans hate America. http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/02/15/1187349/-John-McCain-s-very-very-reasonable-explanation-for-why-Republicans-filibustered-Chuck-Hagel

Boehner, along with Newt Gingrich and several other Republican lawmakers, was one of the engineers of the Contract with America in 1994 that politically helped Republicans during the 1994 congressional elections during which they won the majority in Congress for the first time in four decades. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Boehner#U.S._House_of_Representatives

112th Congress 2011-2012

Occupy Wall Street

Government and Big Banks Joined Forces to Violently Crush Peaceful Protests. http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2012/12/government-and-big-banks-joined-forces-to-violently-crush-peaceful-protests.html

FBI, Homeland Security and Local Police Coordinated the Crackdown of the Occupy Movement with Big Banks. New documents prove what was once dismissed as paranoid fantasy: totally integrated corporate-state repression of dissent. It was more sophisticated than we had imagined: new documents show that the violent crackdown on Occupy last fall – so mystifying at the time – was not just coordinated at the level of the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security, and local police. The crackdown, which involved, as you may recall, violent arrests, group disruption, canister missiles to the skulls of protesters, people held in handcuffs so tight they were injured, people held in bondage till they were forced to wet or soil themselves -was coordinated with the big banks themselves. http://obrag.org/?p=69295

At ArtWalk, chalk one up to excessive police response. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/opinion-la/la-ol-artwalk-chalk-protest-20120713,0,766901.story

17 arrested during ArtWalk clashes in downtown L.A., police now say. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/07/lapd-update-17-people-arrested-during-artwalk-melee.html

July 4th commemorates both our Declaration of Independence and the call to arms that eventually freed our nation from British dominion. Today we find ourselves bound in the shackles of economic enslavement and a Republican agenda dedicated to handing our country over – lock, stock, and barrel – to corporate and 1% rule. The Republican “record” is a litany of disgrace. Their doctrinaire invasion of Iraq, renditions, secret prisons, black ops, and torture policies brought shame upon America. Their tax cuts for the rich and concomitant borrowing brought our nation to the precipice of an all-out economic disaster. They slashed funding to education and welfare, and wanted to “reform” (get rid of) disaster relief, Social Security, Medicare, and all other programs they successfully (but mistakenly) labeled “entitlements.” They supported the criminals of Wall Street while they persecuted minorities and repressed women (or “sluts,” in their vernacular). Via an all-time record of filibusters they willfully obstructed all legislation that might kick-start jobs and our economy – not out of loyalty to their country but solely from a goose-stepping allegiance to their ethically-challenged party. They filed egregious lawsuits against any passed legislation that might help the poor and middle-class, like the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act...or they pledged not to implement such measures in states they control. Their actions resulted in the most dysfunctional Congress in our history. Their false words and Neanderthal manners poisoned our civic discourse as surely as toxic clouds gathered from their denial of climate change. http://suicidegirls.com/news/culture/25154/Fighting-Back/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=h8JJo1RrgVc

Occupy invades “America’s storage shed” Faced with protest, Walmart unilaterally shuts down three warehouses in Southern California. http://www.salon.com/2012/03/02/occupy_invades_americas_storage_shed/singleton/

Dozens of police maintained a late-night guard around City Hall in Oakland, California, following daylong protests that resulted in 300 arrests. Earlier, Occupy Oakland demonstrators broke into the historic building and burned a U.S. flag, and officers earlier fired tear gas to disperse people throwing rocks and tearing down fencing at a convention center. Saturday's protests -- the most turbulent since Oakland police forcefully dismantled an Occupy encampment in November -- came just days after the group said it planned to use a vacant building as a social center and political hub and threatened to try to shut down the port, occupy the airport and take over City Hall. An exasperated Mayor Jean Quan, who faced heavy criticism for the police action last fall, called on the Occupy movement to "stop using Oakland as its playground." http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-mew-occupy-oakland-20120130,0,2890529.story

What really happened when the San Diego Occupiers got kicked off the Greyhound bus in Amarillo, Texas. http://obrag.org/?p=52673

Republican presidential candidates Newt Gingrich, the former House speaker, and Rick Perry, the governor of Texas, have turned to populist rhetoric to bludgeon Romney for his work leading Bain Capital, a private equity firm. Perry was admonished by Fox News’ Sean Hannity for sounding more like an Occupy Wall Street demonstrator than the governor of a conservative state. “You can see the power in the movement by the fact that Republican presidential candidates are starting to adopt some of its language,” said Roy Behr, a Democratic political consultant. “It puts them in a terrible position of completely invalidating everything they stand for. http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/jan/15/election-campaigns-take-on-occupy-themes/

“This was not one rough cop,” said Jennings. “[He] was out of control, lost his temper, and did not follow policy, but he is doing what somebody is telling him to do, and that is the problem. For the first time, you see people from every class, all colors and all ages, uniting together because our common interest are stronger than our individual interests, and that frightens the leaders.” Michael Garcia, the night’s other detainee, said he was sitting in a chair passing out free-speech material and was arrested under an encroachment law. Jennings, who is filing a formal complaint with the Citizens Review Board, is due in court on February 25. The charge against her is “battery committed against the person of a peace officer.” Although attorney Bryan Pease thinks the charges are ridiculous and do not merit an indictment, Jennings faces a $10,000 fine. Earlier this week, Sgt. Milano’s police report remained incomplete, and SDPD personnel refused to comment on what they said could be a potential ongoing investigation. http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/2012/jan/13/stringers-occupy-san-diego-protester-recou/

an LAPD officer would forcibly extend the protestor’s legs, grab his left foot, twist it all the way around and then stomp his boot on the insole, pinning the protestor’s left foot to the pavement, twisted backwards. Then the LAPD officer would grab the protestor’s right foot and twist it all the way the other direction until the non-violent protestor, in incredible agony, would shriek in pain and unlink from his neighbor. It was horrible to watch, and apparently designed to terrorize the rest of us. At least I was sufficiently terrorized. I unlinked my arms voluntarily and informed the LAPD officers that I would go peacefully and cooperatively. I stood as instructed, and then I had my arms wrenched behind my back, and an officer hyperextended my wrists into my inner arms. It was super violent, it hurt really really bad, and he was doing it on purpose. When I involuntarily recoiled from the pain, the LAPD officer threw me face-first to the pavement. He had my hands behind my back, so I landed right on my face. The officer dropped with his knee on my back and ground my face into the pavement. It really, really hurt and my face started bleeding and I was very scared. I begged for mercy and I promised that I was honestly not resisting and would not resist. My hands were then zipcuffed very tightly behind my back, where they turned blue. I am now suffering nerve damage in my right thumb and palm. http://obrag.org/?p=50803

A manifesto for the Occupy movement. The Times attempts to pair the ideals and impulses that have powered the Occupy movement with some practical changes in public policy worth fighting for.

  • Financial reform. Although Occupy Wall Street has sprung up as far afield as the University of California, it originally was an occupation of the actual Wall Street in New York, or at least of nearby Zuccotti Park. What motivated this (we think) was resentment of the financial industry, particularly the Wall Street financiers whose irresponsible behavior produced a worldwide economic downturn but who seem not to have paid much of a price. The banks that were bailed out at monstrous taxpayer expense are now returning to profitability, and busily repossessing homes that never should have been financed to begin with but that might yield fewer losses if their mortgages were modified instead of foreclosed upon. Meanwhile, little has been done to reduce the speculative trading that contributes to bubbles and busts.
  • Protesters and their backers could make a difference by pushing the banks to modify defaulting mortgages and allow more "underwater" borrowers to refinance their loans. That would mean writing off some debt and cutting into profits in the short term, but would yield better results in the long term than repossessing thousands of homes and reselling them in a depressed market. Consumers demonstrated their power over banks when, by closing or threatening to close their accounts, they persuaded Bank of America to drop its plans to impose a charge on debit-card users; a similar economic boycott of banks that are too eager to default could get a new message across. Meanwhile, protesters could pressure Congress to explore a financial transactions tax — a fee on every Wall Street trade. Presuming that other big trading markets in Europe and Asia did the same (the European Union is considering such a move) and that the tax were small enough to avoid discouraging long-term investing, it could shave hundreds of billions off the national debt and slow speculative trading without hurting overall savings or investment rates.
  • Taxation. You know the rhetoric: It's the 99% versus the 1%. The gap between rich and poor has indeed grown precipitously in the last decade, thanks in part to tax changes that have disproportionately benefited the rich and, in turn, helped fuel Occupy Wall Street. For a model of how to fix taxes the right way, we look to the Reagan reforms of 1986, when loopholes and tax shelters were eliminated, top rates were reduced and capital gains (collected mostly by the wealthy) were taxed at the same rate as other kinds of income. Since then, Congress has reinserted the loopholes and reduced capital gains taxes. Republicans are far more unyielding on taxes than they were during the Reagan era and won't return to 1986 without a fight, but if the Occupy movement can rally reform-minded Democrats to turn out at the polls the way the tea party has rallied Republicans, it could achieve a great deal.
  • Corporate influence. The Supreme Court's 2010 decision in Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission was a prime example of the kind of judicial activism that conservatives hate, except when it benefits their cause. By granting corporations the same 1st Amendment rights as individuals when it comes to expenditures on independent political advertising, it overturned legal precedent and increased the power of special interests to influence elections. Congress could undo part of the damage by approving laws that would enssure that shareholders, or rank-and-file union members, approve of their organization's political spending. There's also a movement afoot among a handful of Democratic senators for a constitutional amendment that would overturn Citizens United, but that's a quixotic quest. Feel free to back it, Occupiers, but prepare to have your hearts broken when it goes nowhere.
  • Campaign Finance Reform.
  • Education. Occupy Wall Street might be about financial reform, but Occupy the University of California, which produced appalling scenes such as the pepper-spraying incident at UC Davis now trending on YouTube, seems to be largely about rising tuition. And students have good reason to be angry. Tuition in the UC system has more than doubled in the last decade, and without an infusion of state funds, the inflation will accelerate. Unfortunately, solving this problem isn't as easy as complaining about it. But the state budget proposed by Gov. Jerry Brown would have avoided some of the draconian higher-education increases now on the table by maintaining vehicle, sales and income taxes at their 2010 levels, a move that was thwarted by legislative Republicans, who blocked the proposal from going to the polls. If pepper-sprayed students can raise awareness of how devastating this is to students and families, and how harmful it will ultimately be for California's economic future, their mucus membranes might not have been burned for nothing.
  • Marijuana. Speaking of red eyes, the pungent smoke wafting across Occupy encampments in California, including the erstwhile Occupy L.A., indicates that many demonstrators would favor more sensible cannabis laws. Actually, they appear to favor legalization of even recreational marijuana, but that's not going to happen any time soon. A good start, though, would be to lobby for the federal government to stop treating marijuana as a Schedule 1 drug, an absurd designation that asserts it has no medicinal value and has as high a potential for abuse as heroin. A more reasonable classification would encourage much-needed medical research and hopefully lead to lesser criminal penalties for possession. As for untangling the legal web California has created by legitimizing medical marijuana in the face of a federal ban — good luck on that one. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/opinionla/la-ed-manifesto-20111204,0,463446.story
  • end to violence
  • prosecution of war crimes
  • prosecution of financial crimes
  • public healthcare

Yasha Levine was forced to surrender his freedom, as well as his shoe laces…for his own protection. I finally got home Thursday afternoon after spending two nights in jail, and have had a hard time getting my bearings. On top of severe dehydration and sleep deprivation, I’ve got one hell of pounding migraine. So I’ll have to keep this brief for now. But I wanted to write down a few things that I witnessed and heard while locked up by LA’s finest… First off, don’t believe the PR bullshit. There was nothing peaceful or professional about the LAPD’s attack on Occupy LA–not unless you think that people peacefully protesting against the power of the financial oligarchy deserve to be treated the way I saw Russian cops treating the protesters in Moscow and St. Petersburg who were demonstrating against the oligarchy under Putin and Yeltsin, before we at The eXiled all got tossed out in 2008. Back then, everyone in the West protested and criticized the way the Russian cops brutally snuffed out dissent, myself included. Now I’m in America, at a demonstration, watching exactly the same brutal crackdown… http://exiledonline.com/yasha-levine-released-from-jail-exposes-lapds-appalling-treatment-of-detained-occupy-la-protesters/

Video of Police Pepper-Spraying U.C. Davis Students Provokes Outrage. http://thelede.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/11/19/video-of-police-pepper-spraying-u-c-davis-students-provokes-outrage/

The police in their own way are symbols of the problem. All over the country, thousands of armed cops have been deployed to stand around and surveil and even assault the polite crowds of Occupy protesters. This deployment of law-enforcement resources already dwarfs the amount of money and manpower that the government “committed” to fighting crime and corruption during the financial crisis. One OWS protester steps in the wrong place, and she immediately has police roping her off like wayward cattle. But in the skyscrapers above the protests, anything goes. http://obrag.org/?p=49214

Ray Lutz, Public agency watchdog, COPs, Suggested Manifesto for the Occupy Movement: Progress in 4 Core Areas. http://santee.patch.com/blog_posts/suggested-manifesto-for-the-occupy-movement-progress-in-4-core-areas

the barons of the chemical and nuclear industries don't live next to the radioactive or toxic-waste dumps that their corporations create; on the other hand, impoverished black and brown people often do live near such ecological sacrifice zones because they can't afford better. Similarly, the gated communities of the hyper-wealthy are not built next to cesspool rivers or skylines filled with fuming smokestacks, but the slums of the planet are. Don't think, though, that it's just a matter of property values or scenery. It's about health, about whether your kids have lead or dioxins running through their veins. It's a simple formula, in fact: Wealth disparities become health disparities. And here's another formula: When there's money to be made, both workers and the environment are expendable. Just as jobs migrate if labour can be had cheaper overseas, I know workers who were tossed aside when they became ill from the foul air or poisonous chemicals they encountered on the job. The fact is: We won't free ourselves from a dysfunctional and unfair economic order until we begin to see ourselves as communities, not commodities. That is one clear message from Zuccotti Park. Polluters routinely walk away from the ground they poison and expect taxpayers to clean up after them. By "externalising" such costs, profits are increased. Examples of land abuse and abandonment are too legion to list, but most of us can refer to a familiar "superfund site" in our own backyard. Clearly, Mother Nature is among the disenfranchised, exploited and struggling. http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2011/11/2011116132856199157.html

Post Consumerism. The occupiers, and the homeless, are still consumers. Why are we so involved with collecting and holding on to stuff?

Occupy Wall Street may not have laid out all of its demands in a perfectly cogent one-sentence bumper sticker for you, Mr. Pundit, but it knows precisely what it doesn’t want. It doesn’t want you. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2011/10/how_ows_confuses_and_ignores_fox_news_and_the_pundit_class_.html

"broadly criticizing corporate dominance and government corruption"

He was mad about bailouts alright, but not the Wall Street bailouts. What sparked his fury was the proposed plan to help average homeowners in trouble with their mortgages. Santelli raved: "Do we really want to subsidise the losers' mortgages? This is America! How many of you people want to pay for your neighbour's mortgage? President Obama, are you listening? How about we all stop paying our mortgages! It's a moral hazard." "Do we really want to subsidise the losers?" Here's how his colleague Lawrence Kudlow characterised the outburst: "Santelli called for a new Tea Party in support of capitalism. He's right." Support for capitalism - and antipathy toward government interference in it - is the very essence of Tea Party populism. There wasn't much talk about the moral hazard of a "too big to fail" banking system but there was plenty of fulminating about government interference in "the market" and righteous anger about the stimulus plan and what they characterised as the "government takeover" of the healthcare system. It was never about corporate greed, but was about the usual right wing resentment at the government spending their tax money on people they don't think have earned it. These are not billionaire bankers - they are the people on the lower rungs of the ladder. Unsurprisingly, this attitude turned out to be useful to corporate interests looking to allay any real populist impulses among the citizenry, and they soon moved in through various means to help the "movement" organise itself. Contrary to various accounts surfacing lately ostensibly to warn the Occupy Wall Street supporters of the dangers of being similarly "co-opted" it was a very happy love match, not a marriage of convenience. Occupy Wall Street, on the other hand, while being endlessly harrangued by wags and pundits about its alleged lack of goals and lists of grievances, is actually focused pretty clearly on the same thing as the populists of the Gilded Age - those whom Teddy Roosevelt called the "malefactors of great wealth". Their rallying cry is "we are the 99 per cent" which represents the huge number of those of us who have been treading water or losing ground over the past 30 years, while and the upper one per cent of the population swallows up more and more of the nation's wealth. This shocking income inequality is finally reaching a critical mass that is animating the OWS movement. http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2011/10/2011101883450141716.html

Meet the Guy Who Snitched on Occupy Wall Street to the FBI and NYPD. The Occupy Wall Street protests have been going on for a month. And it seems the FBI and NYPD have had help tracking protesters' moves thanks to a conservative computer security expert who gained access to one of the group's internal mailing lists, and then handed over information on the group's plans to authorities and corporations targeted by protesters. Since the Occupy Wall Street protest began on September 17, New York security consultant Thomas Ryan has been waging a campaign to infiltrate and discredit the movement. Ryan says he's done contract work for the U.S. Army and he brags on his blog that he leads "a team called Black Cell, a team of the most-highly trained and capable physical, threat and cyber security professionals in the world." But over the past few weeks, he and his computer security buddies have been spending time covertly attending Occupy Wall Street meetings, monitoring organizers' social media accounts, and hanging out with protesters in Lower Manhattan. As part of their intelligence-gathering operation, the group gained access to a listserv used by Occupy Wall Street organizers called September17discuss. On September17discuss, organizers hash out tactics and plan events, conduct post-mortems of media appearances, and trade the latest protest gossip. On Friday, Ryan leaked thousands of September17discuss emails to conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart, who is now using them to try to smear Occupy Wall Street as an anarchist conspiracy to disrupt global markets. http://gawker.com/5850054/meet-the-guy-who-snitched-on-occupy-wall-street-to-the-fbi-and-nypd?tag=occupy-wall-street

http://www.pbs.org/wnet/need-to-know/economy/the-true-cost-of-the-bank-bailout/3309/

CNN's Erin Burnett ventured down to Occupy Wall Street and told some protesters that "taxpayers actually made money on the Wall St. bailout." She made fun of the protesters on-air and derided their knowledge of the bailouts. The only problem for Erin, is that she's the one who didn't get her facts straight. That's right, the banking apologista, who is engaged to a Citigroup executive, and is infamous for having her ass handed to her on camera by Congressman Brad Sherman over AIG bonuses, didn't do her bailout research before she decided to ridicule protesters for not doing doing their bailout research. According to the U.S. Treasury's own figures, available publicly to any reader, including pneumatic (we understand if you need a dictionary for that one, Erin) and arrogant CNN reporters, as of TODAY, taxpayers are still more than $95 BILLION IN THE RED on TARP. And that's including all interest and other income. There is still $122 BILLION of TARP funds that have NOT yet been paid back. We understand that Burnett was excluding GM, but she somehow missed that AIG, alone, still owes over $50 BILLION. The "we made money on the bailout" meme just won't die. Facts and in the case of Burnett, poor research, be damned... http://robalini.blogspot.com/2011/10/true-cost-of-wall-street-bailout.html

Photos: San Diego’s Occupation Underway. http://www.voiceofsandiego.org/credentialed/article_c9b071ca-f157-11e0-bc84-001cc4c002e0.html

Second night of "Occupy Wall Street" protests in San Diego. A loosely structured protest movement that formed in New York City three weeks ago to decry the perceived sins of banks, corporations, political elites and other power brokers materialized in the opposite corner of the nation Saturday as hundreds of chanting, sign-waving demonstrators took to the streets of San Diego. Supporters of the social network-driven campaign, which began last month as a rally dubbed "Occupy Wall Street," began gathering at Children's Park in the Marina district in the late afternoon before marching north to Civic Center Plaza at City Hall for a demonstration and sit-in. There were no immediate reports of unruly behavior or illegal activity among participants, who expressed an array of reasons for becoming involved in the nascent local crusade, christened "Occupy San Diego." "We are all here for different reasons, but we stand in solidarity against Wall Street," 19-year-old Amanda Santoni remarked while serving free food at the initial meet-up spot at First and Island avenues. Ray Lutz, an organizer and spokesman for the activists, said the protest would not be short-lived. "This is going to be going on until we get a response," Lutz said. http://www.cbs8.com/story/15640951/second-night-of-occupy-wall-street-protests-in-san-diego

News

The Senate early on New Year's Day voted overwhelmingly in favor of a fiscal cliff deal that would extend tax rates on annual household income under $450,000 and postpones automatic spending cuts for two months. The bill was approved in an 89-8 vote that came after only 10 minutes of formal floor debate and no official score from the Congressional Budget Office. The Joint Committee on Taxation estimated it would reduce federal revenue by $3.93 trillion over the next decade compared to current law. Five Republicans and three Democrats voted against the bill: Sens. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Tom Carper (D-Del.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Richard Shelby (R-Ala.). Sens. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) and Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) missed the vote. http://thehill.com/homenews/senate/275069-senate-approves-fiscal-cliff-deal

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/08/27/meet-the-real-founding-fathers-the-shocking-truth-about-washington-madison-and-martin.html

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) $451.1 million
Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif.) $435.4 million
Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-Fla.) $366.2 million
Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) $294.9 million
Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) $285.1 million
Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) $283.1 million
Sen. Herb Kohl (D-Wisc.) $231.2 million
Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) $201.5 million
Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) $136.2 million
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.)$108.1 million
combined net worth: $2.8 billion
http://motherjones.com/politics/2011/02/income-inequality-in-america-chart-graph

House Republican leaders have a simple strategy for dealing with Rep. Michele Bachmann: Ignore her. http://www.rollcall.com/issues/56_77/-203095-1.html

In their quest to deny reproductive rights to as many women as possible, Republican congressmen are seeking to narrow the federal government’s definition of rape in order to exclude many victims from abortion coverage. “The No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act,” or H.R. 3, is “one of the most extreme bills that we’ve seen,” says Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America. If enacted, it would affect tens of millions of women’s health insurance, whether or not the federal government subsidizes their plans. And the bill will send a message to all women that certain kinds of sexual assault don’t count as rape at all. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-01-31/gop-abortion-bill-redefines-rape/

Republicans won dozens of elections last fall after claiming Democrats had focused too little on creating jobs. Now GOP lawmakers stand accused of the same thing, using their new House majority to push to repeal the president's health care law, restrict abortions and highlight other social issues important to their most conservative supporters. Republican leaders say they have a jobs agenda, which began with their attempt to unravel what they call the Democrats' "jobs-killing" health overhaul. Democrats scoff, and they're hounding Republicans to show how they can put more people to work. "It's astonishing to me how tone-deaf the Republicans have been in the first weeks of the session," said Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass. "They've talked about everything but jobs." Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi

To hear the Republican leadership tell it, the once-sacred Pentagon budget, protected by the party for generations, is suddenly on the table. But a closer look shows that even as Speaker John A. Boehner and Representative Eric Cantor, the House majority leader, insist on the need for military cuts, divisions have opened among Republicans about whether, and how much, to chop Pentagon spending that comes to more than a half trillion dollars a year. Those differences were on display Wednesday on Capitol Hill, where the traditional Republican who now leads the House Armed Services Committee, Representative Howard P. McKeon, fought back against proposed cuts in the Pentagon budget even as fledgling committee members supported by the Tea Party said that the nation’s debts amounted to a national security risk. “I cannot say it strongly enough: I will not support any measures that stress our forces and jeopardize the lives of our men and women in uniform,” Mr. McKeon said in an opening statement that followed up on a letter to Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates urging him not to stop work on the Marines’ $14.4. billion Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle, a combined landing craft and tank for amphibious assaults that Mr. Gates canceled this month. But Representative Chris Gibson, a Tea Party-endorsed freshman Republican and a retired Army colonel from New York’s Hudson River Valley, made it clear that no part of the Pentagon’s $550 billion budget — some $700 billion including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan — was immune. “This deficit that we have threatens our very way of life, and everything needs to be on the table,” Mr. Gibson told William J. Lynn III, the deputy defense secretary, who testified at the hearing along with Gen. Peter J. Chiarelli, the vice chief of staff of the Army, and other service vice chiefs. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/27/us/politics/27pentagon.html

'Tea party' gathering a tepid draw among senators. Many won election with the aid of the tea party movement, but only four attend the first Senate Tea Party Caucus meeting. http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-na-tea-party-20110128,0,3387154.story

John A. Boehner declares "War on Gravity".

GOP Lie: Healthcare law not "job-killing" http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/nov05election/detail

Sen. Coburn and Sen. Chuck Schumer discussed the role of political discourse in the Arizona shooting. When asked if the real problem is the apocalyptic nature of political rhetoric, Coburn replied that he’s tired of the media on the right and the left: “We’re spending all this time talking about political discourse rather than talking about the real risk to our country.” http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-01-16/arizona-shooting-aftermath-and-more-sunday-talk/?cid=hp:mainpromo2

"When you look at unbalanced people, how they respond to the vitriol that comes out of certain mouths about tearing down the government. The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous," said the sheriff. "And unfortunately, Arizona I think has become sort of the capital. We have become the mecca for prejudice and bigotry." "I didn't really think that that had any part in a law enforcement briefing last night," Kyl said. "It was speculation." Kyl said the only thing about Jared Lee Loughner that seems clear is that he is a "very mentally unstable" person. "It's probably giving him too much credit to ascribe a coherent political philosophy to him," he said. "We just have to acknowledge that there are mentally unstable people in this country. Who knows what motivates them to do what they do? Then they commit terrible crimes like this." Kyl said that Giffords would be the first one "to say don't rush to judgment here." "She herself was a proponent of the Second Amendment," the senator said. "She read, as has been pointed out several times, the First Amendment part of the constitution on the floor of the House the other day. She was doing what she likes to do most with her constituents. She meets constituents all the time. And she would not want to be restrained in any way from her ability to do that." Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said he agreed with the sheriff's comments. "Far too many broadcasts now and so many outlets have the intent of inciting, and inciting people to opposition, to anger, to thinking the other side is less than moral," he said. "And I think that is a context in which somebody who is mentally unbalanced can somehow feel justified in taking this kind of action." Hoyer said he had talked to Giffords' husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, who is "very angry, Very angry about the level of angry rhetoric that he believes incites people." "We're going to have to find out exactly what the motivation here was," Hoyer said, adding that everyone in the public square needed to "fashion our rhetoric so that it does not incite but informs." http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/136869-kyl-too-much-credit-to-give-shooter-coherent-political-philosophy

While there is no hard evidence at this point to suggest that the shooting was politically motivated, Matt Yglesias points out that an anti-Giffords event was held in June with the billing: "Get on Target for Victory in November. Help remove Gabrielle Giffords from office. Shoot a fully automatic M16 with Jesse Kelly." Rep. Giffords was also on Sarah Palin's "target list." As noted earlier, a gun was dropped at a Giffords event in 2009, and her office was vandalized in March. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/08/gabrielle-giffords-shot-c_n_806211.html

CPAC infiltrated by radical gays, radical Muslims. http://www.salon.com/news/cpac/?story=/politics/war_room/2011/01/05/cpac_infiltrated_by_gays_muslims

Some right-wing groups to skip GOP event. The presence of gay conservative groups at the upcoming Conservative Political Action Conference angers the Family Research Council, the Heritage Foundation and other organizations. Some prominent right-wing groups say they will not attend a major Republican gathering in Washington next month, objecting to the presence of gay groups and other organizations whose aims they say are incompatible with conservatism. An estimated 10,000 people are expected to attend the Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC, to hear aspiring presidential candidates and vote in one of the first straw polls of the 2012 cycle. Among the missing will be the Family Research Council, a conservative Christian group and once a sponsor of CPAC; the Heritage Foundation; and the American Family Assn., which opposes same-sex marriage. The Family Research Council has been disenchanted for several years with CPAC, said Tom McClusky, senior vice president of the group's legislative arm. Among its complaints: A new gay conservative group has been invited for the second year in a row, and CPAC has refused to schedule a panel about traditional marriage. "Conservatives and homosexuals cannot coexist in a movement predicated on social values," wrote the group's president, Tony Perkins, in an e-mail to supporters. "Organizations whose whole reason for existence is to promote the forced public affirmation of homosexual conduct should not be welcomed at CPAC." http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-cpac-20110108,0,4410541.story

Healthcare for all Republican politicians. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/06/gop-disclosure-rule-government-health-care_n_805146.html

Boehner declares: "This is the rich people's house." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/06/two-house-republicans-vot_n_805423.html

Liberals read the Constitution before the election.

Republicans in the House of Representatives read the entire Constitution for the first time. Many have trouble with the words. Several key sections omitted on purpose. http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-constitution-congress-20110106,0,7572470.story

Obama's chief antagonist may be Rep. Darrell Issa (R- Vista), who will chair the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Darrell Issa of California, Age: 57. Background: Issa became wealthy through the development of the Viper car alarm, which featured a recording of his voice saying, "Step away from the car." He was elected to Congress in 2000. Coming flashpoints: Issa's ascension has prompted fears among Democrats of a return to the days of Rep. Dan Burton. (The Indiana Republican made life miserable for the Clinton administration in the 1990s by focusing on, among other things, the suicide of White House lawyer Vince Foster, who Burton contended was murdered.) Issa, however, has said that he wants to pursue more bureaucratic targets, such as the implementation of the healthcare overhaul, the powers of the Federal Reserve, and the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Issa once called Obama "one of the most corrupt presidents in modern times."Issa has promised not to use the position to mount grandstanding investigations into political arcana, such as subpoenaing the president's birth certificate, but will instead use his committee to try to uncover fraud and waste within the federal government. But Issa made it clear that Obama's legislative accomplishments are a ripe target. "After a trillion-dollar stimulus that didn't create jobs, a trillion-dollar bailout of Wall Street and a trillion-dollar healthcare overhaul, the American people believe we need more oversight, not less," he said in an interview. "But that oversight must lead to reform so that we produce a federal government that serves the people better and without excess spending.... We need to be better stewards of the people's money." http://www.latimes.com/health/la-na-new-chairmen-20110101,0,5855531.story

Under the auspices of keeping federal spending under control, Republican congressmen have launched yet another attack on the basic scientific research that could lead to useful, potentially job-creating discoveries. House majority leader Eric Cantor (R-Virginia) announced last week that the YouCut Citizen Review, a crowdsourcing tool for identifying “wasteful spending that should be cut,” would make its very first target the National Science Foundation. http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2010/12/nsf-youcut-review/

Republicanism is a Mental Disease

Speaker John Boehner (Ohio) faces a choice: defeat and failure or failure and defeat: http://thehill.com/homenews/house/275087-boehners-100-loyal-soldiers-might-give-him-political-cover-on-fiscal-cliff

As Washington staggers into a new year, one side of the political spectrum polarizes and paralyzes all ongoing debates due to its irrational reliance on a higher power. The problem isn’t religious conservatives and their abiding faith in God; it’s mainstream liberals and their blind confidence in government. Consider the current dispute over the right response to gun violence. At its core, this argument comes down to a visceral disagreement between relying on self-defense or on government protection. Gun-rights enthusiasts insist that the best security for law-abiding citizens comes from placing formidable firearms into their hands; gun-control advocates believe we can protect the public far more effectively by taking guns away from as many Americans as possible. In other words, conservatives want to address the threat of gun violence by giving individuals more power while liberals seek to improve the situation by concentrating more power in the hands of the government. The right preaches self-reliance while the left places its trust in the higher power of government. Michael Medved http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/12/28/the-liberal-god-delusion.html

Economy

Bonehead backfires http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/dec/21/boehner-fiscal-cliff-bill-withdrawn

Boner bites it http://www.kpbs.org/news/2012/dec/20/house-gop-puts-vote-boehners-plan-b/?utm_source=twitter.com&utm_medium=social-media&utm_campaign=kpbsnews-twitter&utm_term=kpbs-evening

Meet the 0.01 Percent: War Profiteers. http://blogs.alternet.org/speakeasy/2011/10/27/meet-the-0-01-percent-war-profiteers/?

Republicans are demanding deficit reduction through spending cuts alone - but the Bush-era tax cuts are the real culprit. http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/star-spangled-staggers/2011/07/tax-cuts-obama-republicans

Poor little Bonehead, is he gonna cry? oh him so sad. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/25/tea-party-scores-another-victory-with-boehner-debt-proposal_n_908771.html

Dear John Boehner: fat stupid and drunk is no way to go through life.

Bonehead John Boehner the plan being crafted by the Ohio Republican would potentially lead to a downgrading of the AAA credit rating of the United States.

Norquist, who heads Americans for Tax Reform, accused Coburn of wanting to “trick Republicans into voting for a teeny tax increase” that would shatter the sacred pledge. Coburn says the activist is playing “the typical Washington game of gotcha.” Norquist explained that the Republican base of the Bush class is prepared to move off shore to Saudi Arabia or South America to weather the economic disaster. "Bring it on!" he challenged. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/07/08/obama-republicans-duke-it-out-in-public-while-advancing-debt-deal-in-private.html

Daley said Sunday that Republicans were “concentrating on trying to bring continued tax relief to the wealthy." http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/sc-dc-obama-debt-talks-20110710,0,6853686.story

Our Pathetic Debt Debate A grand bargain on the deficit was crushed when Speaker Boehner pulled out of talks, refusing to budge on revenue increases. John Avlon on the childish rhetoric that’s pushing America to the brink. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/07/10/boehner-pulls-out-of-debt-talks-how-the-debate-has-become-pathetic.html

"It's Not a Revenue Problem. It's a Spending Problem." Tracing the history of a GOP talking point. http://www.slate.com/id/2291530/

Minnesota Moves to Make the Rich Pay More. http://www.truthdig.com/eartotheground/item/raising_minnesota_20110226/

A windfall for California. The state benefits after Wisconsin and Ohio forgo billions of dollars in federal stimulus funds. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/editorials/la-ed-trains-20101211,0,7552797.story

Attacks on Labor

"The mistake I made early on is, I looked at it almost like the head of a small business: identify a problem, identify a solution and go out and do it," Walker told Reuters at the National Governor's Association meeting in Salt Lake City. "I don't think we built enough of a political case, so we let ... the national organizations come in and define the debate while we were busy just getting the job done," he said. Note: the government is not a business. Ed. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/16/scott-walker-mistakes-policies_n_900820.html

Wrong in Wisconsin. The state's attack on unions is misguided, but that doesn't mean the status quo is sustainable. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/editorials/la-ed-wisconsin-20110224,0,1618981.story

"Hundreds of cops have just marched into the Wisconsin state capitol building to protest the anti-Union bill, to massive applause. They now join up to 600 people who are inside. Police have just announced to the crowds inside the occupied State Capitol of Wisconsin: 'We have been ordered by the legislature to kick you all out at 4:00 today. But we know what's right from wrong. We will not be kicking anyone out, in fact, we will be sleeping here with you!' Unreal." http://www.boingboing.net/2011/02/26/wisconsin-cops-for-t.html

Foreign Policy

As protesters in Egypt continued to call for the resignation of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, former Vice President Dick Cheney urged U.S. leaders to remember that Mubarak was "a good man" and important friend to the United States and said he hoped that the Obama administration would seek "balance" in its approach to the fast-moving events overseas. Cheney's remarks came in the midst of a discussion of former President Ronald Reagan's legacy at a panel in Santa Barbara on Saturday night. The former vice president noted that he began working with Mubarak in 1990 when he was defense secretary under President George H.W. Bush. Bush had sent him to Saudi Arabia to arrange for the deployment of U.S. forces with the goal of liberating Kuwait from the Iraqi invasion. Mubarak worked as a partner "right at the outset," Cheney said, agreeing to allow U.S. aircraft to fly over his country and sending two divisions of the Egyptian army to fight alongside U.S. troops. "He's been a good friend and ally of the United States and we need to remember that," Cheney said. "It's also important when you get into these circumstances that you try to have an open channel of communications that is private to whoever it is you are dealing with out there. It is very hard for some foreign leader to act on U.S. advice in a visible way." http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-0206-cheney-reagan-20110206,0,5507253.story

Republican malfeasance

"Republican Insiders Attempt Hostile Takeover of FreedomWorks" http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/12/dick-armey-freedomworks-hostile-takeover-memo

A former aide to Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker was convicted on Friday of stealing money from a fund for families of U.S. soldiers who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan. A jury in Milwaukee County Circuit Court found Kevin Kavanaugh guilty of embezzling more than $42,000 from Operation Freedom, a military appreciation event held each year at the Milwaukee County Zoo. Kavanaugh, who worked for Walker when the first-term Republican governor served as Milwaukee County executive, faces up to 10 years in prison and a $25,000 fine. Sentencing is expected on Dec. 7. Kavanaugh, 62, was the treasurer of the Military Order of the Purple Heart, a charity involved in Operation Freedom, from 2006 to 2009. Walker appointed him to serve on the Milwaukee County Veteran Service Commission during Walker's term as Milwaukee County executive. Walker originally ran the Operation Freedom event through his county office. It was later turned over to the Purple Heart organization after Walker received legal advice the event should be handled by a charitable organization. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/13/kevin-kavanaugh-scott-walker-aide_n_1963072.html

I said something that to me seemed so obvious it didn't even occur to me anyone would object: that it was clearly Big Oil that wanted the pipeline revived, and that it was using the congressmen it funded heavily to make it happen. Beside me, I could feel Terry bristle. He quickly interjected, something to the effect of, are you saying that we're "bought off"? And I suddenly felt bad, as if I indeed had said something wrong. I stammered; I tried to say I didn't know anything about him in particular, that I was sure he'd eventually be part of the solution and so on. But the frost stayed in the air; he seemed genuinely hurt that anyone could think he had a conflict. Is it really possible that people in Washington don't understand what the rest of the country — left, right and center — believes about them: That they take campaign money from corporations in return for doing their bidding? I went home and looked up Terry in the database of the Dirty Energy Money Campaign, compiled by Oil Change International. Koch Industries had given him $15,500. Exxon Mobil had given him $25,500. The Petroleum Marketers Assn. had tossed in $12,500. ConocoPhillips, Chevron, BP — all in all since 1999, he'd gotten $365,798 from the fossil fuel industry, and in the latest tally the site states he'd "sided with "dirty energy interests in 100% of selected votes." http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-mckibben-congress-20111214,0,3498758.story

Tony Kvaric. A good (old fashioned?) cyber-spat between San Diego County’s Republican and Democratic parties has broken out on — where else? — Twitter. On Wednesday, local Democratic Party Chairman Jess Durfee issued a press release about the social network suspending the accounts of the Republican Party of San Diego County (@SDRepublicans) and that of its chairman, Tony Krvaric (@TonyKrvaric). Twitter apparently yanked the accounts after county Democrats contacted the company to complain about four handles purporting to represent Democratic San Diego City Council candidates — @SherriLightner, @ToddPhilips, @MatKostrinsky, and @MartiEmerald — in addition to @sddemocrats and its chairman, @JessDurfee. “I applaud Twitter for acting quickly to shut the deceptive profiles down,” Durfee said on Wednesday. “Childish and unethical conduct online is nothing new, but I am disappointed to see that my Republican counterpart and his party may have been behind it. “The idea of Tony Krvaric posting as @JessDurfee is just creepy.” In an interview, Krvaric acknowledged that his favored Twitter handle had been suspended, but said he had yet to be informed about the reason. He also copped to creating the above-referenced phony accounts. Each was clearly marked that it was not the official account of the four council candidates, including two incumbents, he said. “I never tweeted as any of the council candidates,” Krvaric. “But we have a political campaign going on and they weren’t taken. If I register it; then they can’t register it. It’s a campaign. “For Marti Emerald to not register @MartiEmerald when she’s been on the council for how long? I just tried it one day and they were all available so I registered them. So What?" Krvaric said he didn’t think it was unethical to essentially act the part of the “Twitter squatter.” Twitter has a policy against username squatting, including “creating accounts for the purpose of preventing others from using those account names.” [Disclosure: I use the name @ccadelago, but have reserved the Twitter handles @cadelago and @chriscadelago.] There should be wiggle room, Krvaric said. For example, @SanDiegoGOP has been squatting on his turf for some time. Krvaric’s and the Republican Party’s accounts were not mentioned in the Democratic complaint, Durfee said. However, both were suspended Wednesday along with the phony accounts, indicating Twitter had flagged Krvaric as the culprit. The Democrats’ letter to Twitter cited a policy that defines impersonation as “pretending to be another person or entity in order to deceive.” The policy continues: “Impersonation is a violation of the Twitter Rules and may result in permanent account suspension.” “Basically, they are pissed off that they didn’t register them first,” Krvaric said. “For them not to register their own … It just shows how far behind they are … “There’s nothing illegal about it and I don’t think I did anything wrong. What sucks is I have to redo my whole account. All my followers and everything. In some way, although I want my full name back, I was following too many people so this will be like a cleansing." Krvaric said he did send a few tweets as Jess Durfee, who he said joined “after I mocked him forever.” “It wasn’t about him,” said Krvaric, now registered as @Krvaric. “It was really just goofing off." Durfee said he was not surprised to learn Krvaric was behind the stunt. "He doesn’t seem to spend his time doing the things that help build a party; rather he spends his time playing little games," Durfee said. "While they are doing all that crap, we’re out there registering voters. I guess I approach my position a little more seriously and am doing things that I should be doing." The legitimate Twitter handles for the Democrats are @Kostrinsky, @MartiEmeraldD7, @SanDiegoDems and @ChairJessDurfee. http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2011/oct/12/twitter-accounts-county-gop-chairman-yanked/

Local Republicans caught starting fake Democrat Twitter accounts. SAN DIEGO -- Local Democrats and Republicans are bracing for a brutal 2012 campaign, and the first battleground may be online. San Diego Republican Party Chairman Tony Kvaric recently opened a series of Twitter accounts in the name of Democratic candidates for city council and the Democratic party. Democrats complained and got the accounts of Kvaric and the Republicans taken down. New ones were quickly started. "We set them up as parody accounts," Kvaric explained, "Parody accounts are a long time Twitter tradition. Obviously, the Democrats didn't like that." "I would say it's really childish," said San Diego Democrat Party chairman Jess Durfee, "I think what's frustrating is that the voter is out there saying, we hate politics because of this sort of thing." http://www.fox5sandiego.com/news/kswb-local-republicans-caught-starting-fake-democrat-twitter-accounts-20111014,0,7691189.story

Darrell Issa, the entrepreneur, oversees the hub of a growing financial empire worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Darrell Issa’s businesses have prospered since he was elected in 2000. The properties his management company in California owns include a building housing a Hooters restaurant. Representative Darrell Issa, the powerful Republican congressman, runs the local district office where his constituents come for help. The proximity of the two offices reflects Mr. Issa’s dual careers, a meshing of public and private interests rarely seen in government. Even as he has built a reputation as a forceful Congressional advocate for business, Mr. Issa has bought up office buildings, split a holding company into separate multimillion-dollar businesses, started an insurance company, traded hundreds of millions of dollars in securities, invested in overseas funds, retained an interest in his auto-alarm company and built up a family foundation. As his private wealth and public power have grown, so too has the overlap between his private and business lives, with at least some of the congressman’s government actions helping to make a rich man even richer and raising the potential for conflicts. He has secured millions of dollars in Congressional earmarks for road work and public works projects that promise improved traffic and other benefits to the many commercial properties he owns here north of San Diego. In one case, more than $800,000 in earmarks he arranged will help widen a busy thoroughfare in front of a medical plaza he bought for $10.3 million. http://obrag.org/?p=43129

Republican Misery Index # of unfunded wars + # of attacks on Congress women + poverty + hunger

20 lies (and counting) told by Gov. Walker. http://filterednews.wordpress.com/2011/03/05/20-lies-and-counting-told-by-gov-walker/

Isn’t it cute that Republicans in Congress suddenly have this pang of responsibility towards our nation’s fiscal health? Doesn’t it sound great when they say that they’re the ones with all the answers? And the sound bites of Republican lawmakers blaming Barack Obama and his administration for the current budget deficit sure sound like good arguments. Until you actually do some digging and realize that they’re completely and totally full of it. The Republicans would have the nation believe that they’re the party of fiscal responsibility, and that the Democrats are the ones who are digging the hole even deeper. But where were the Republicans when the country went from a budget surplus to a budget deficit? And who was in charge back then? Oh yeah! I remember……….. Recall that in January 2001, George W. Bush was inaugurated and inherited an estimated $236.4 billion budget surplus. Dubya actually thought that was a bad thing, so he declared that American’s needed a refund! To make himself look like a hero, he cut taxes and immediately sent out refund checks. A pretty neat trick, and good politics, but not very good policy. It’s kind of like when Sarah Palin took all the credit when she handed out record checks through the Alaska Permanent Fund……payments to Alaska residents from the oil and gas companies who made record profits that year, thus resulting in record “dividend” checks to Alaska residents. But it was on Palin’s watch, so Palin gets all the credit, right? But I digress…….. Point is that Dubya’s two rounds of tax cuts were the largest contributor to the explosion in the national deficit and debt during his tenure. http://politicsoffootball.wordpress.com/2011/02/23/the-republicans%e2%80%99-faux-fiscal-concern/

Darrell Issa probes staff; spokesman Kurt Bardella at center of controversy. Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0211/50365.html

Secret campaign ad financing in offing as FEC is deadlocked. Independent political groups, especially those backing conservatives, say federal disclosure law doesn't apply to them. The FEC is at an impasse: Democrats want full disclosure of who's paying for political ads; Republicans say they favor a hands-off approach. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-election-commission-deadlock-20110228,0,2505157.story

An inspiring speech made by a member of the Wisconsin police union, explaining why they’ve chosen to resist the governor’s anti-union agenda. “Mr. Walker, if you’re listening: We know pretty well know who you work for. Now let me tell you who we work for,” he said, eliciting a round of cheers from the crowd. Wlaker works for Koch. It always creeps me out when Bhoner says "the people have spoken!" He dosen't speak for me! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HVE_rLjxnfU http://www.youtube.com/user/ryanharveysongs

The Wisconsin Lie Exposed – Taxpayers Actually Contribute Nothing To Public Employee Pensions. http://blogs.forbes.com/rickungar/2011/02/25/the-wisconsin-lie-exposed-taxpayers-actually-contribute-nothing-to-public-employee-pensions/

Infographic on the relationship between the Koch Bros and Scott Walker. http://www.boingboing.net/2011/02/27/infographic-on-the-r.html

Top 10 Disastrous Policies From The Wisconsin GOP You Haven’t Heard About. http://wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2011/02/25/10-gop-disaster/

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich was confronted Tuesday night by a college student asking about his extramarital affair during the 1990s. "You adamantly oppose gay rights... but you've also been married three times and admitted to having an affair with your current wife while you were still married to your second," Isabel Friedman, president of the Penn Democrats, asked Gingrich after a speech at the University of Pennsylvania, according to Politico. "As a successful politician who's considering running for president, who would set the bar for moral conduct and be the voice of the American people, how do you reconcile this hypocritical interpretation of the religious values that you so vigorously defend?" Revelations of Gingrich's infidelity triggered intense scrutiny, especially considering his own role in the Clinton/Lewinsky scandal, though some have suggested that the Speaker of the House and the President had then bonded over their indiscretions. Despite prior candor on the matter, however, Gingrich held his ground on Tuesday. "I'll bet almost everybody here can gather the thrust of your question," he said. "I appreciate the delicacy and generosity in the way it was framed.... I hope you feel better about yourself. Gingrich, who has been floated as a potential 2012 presidential candidate, then offered an explanation similar to the ones he's given before. "I've had a life which, on occasion, has had problems," Gingrich said. "I believe in a forgiving God, and the American people will have to decide whether that their primary concern. If the primary concern of the American people is my past, my candidacy would be irrelevant. If the primary concern of the American people is the future... that's a debate I'll be happy to have with your candidate or any other candidate if I decide to run." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/23/newt-gingrich-affair_n_826970.html

He joins a long list of politicians ruined by below-the-belt improprieties and extramarital flirtations. Last May, Rep. Mark Souder, an eight-term Republican from Indiana, resigned after having an affair with a female staffer. The congressman had been in office since 1994, when he campaigned on family values during the “Republican revolution”; he won his district’s primary just two weeks ago. Fox News reports that Souder’s conduct with the staffer, who worked in his district office, would have put him in the crosshairs of the House Ethics Committee. Spanky Panky http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-03-30/which-party-has-more-sex-scandals/

New York Republican Rep. Christopher Lee resigned Wednesday, only hours after Gawker published shirtless photos he had sent to a woman he met via Craigslist. In his resignation, Lee said he regrets the "harm" he inflicted on his family and constituents, and later refused to comment further, only telling Fox News “I have to work this out with my wife.” Earlier Wednesday, Gawker published not only the photo but also an account of a 34-year-old woman who said she was contacted by Lee about her personal ad on Craigslist. Lee allegedly sent her two pictures from a since-deactivated Gmail account—one normal picture and one “PG-13 muscle picture.” After the account went viral, a spokesman for Lee claimed the congressman had been the victim of hackers. http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/02/09/rep-lee-declines-comment-report-claiming-sent-shirtless-photo-craigslist/

The wife of Justice Clarence Thomas, who has raised her political profile in the last year through her outspoken conservative activism, is rebranding herself as a lobbyist and self-appointed “ambassador to the Tea Party movement.” Virginia Thomas, the justice’s wife, said on libertyinc.co, a Web site for her new political consulting business, that she saw herself as an advocate for “liberty-loving citizens” who favored limited government, free enterprise and other core conservative issues. She promised to use her “experience and connections” to help clients raise money and increase their political impact. Ms. Thomas’s effort to take a more operational role on conservative issues could intensify questions about her husband’s ability to remain independent on issues like campaign finance and health care, legal ethicists said. Justice Thomas “should not be sitting on a case or reviewing a statute that his wife has lobbied for,” said Monroe H. Freedman, a Hofstra Law School professor specializing in legal ethics. “If the judge’s impartiality might reasonably be questioned, that creates a perception problem.” http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/05/us/politics/05thomas.html

Hunter used his congressional pull to honor Steve Hamann, El Cajon’s “Citizen of the Year” (and the moderator of Hunter’s only 2010 debate), and John Olsen, the 2010 president of the Santee Chamber of Commerce (the chamber’s executive director donated $250 to Hunter’s campaign in October). As a member of the House Armed Services Committee, Hunter announced an alternative list of budget cuts to challenge defense secretary Robert Gates’ plan. Hunter’s office would not provide this list to CityBeat, except to say he’s all for protecting the “expeditionary fighting vehicle” program currently on the chopping block. According to OpenSecrets.org, Hunter has received $15,600 from the vehicle’s main contractor, General Dynamics, as well as another $12,500 from two other companies providing components, Honeywell and L-3 Communications. Last year, this kind of defense-industry advocacy earned Hunter a baton-twirling place on the “Pork Parade” by the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. Hunter now has his hand out for even more campaign money. According to documents obtained by Polit icalPartyTime.org, he held two $500-per-plate lunches in January and has two more scheduled in February. http://www.sdcitybeat.com/sandiego/article-8693-fresh-sesh.html

Dems

Honor Roll

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http://www.theonion.com/articles/shirtless-biden-washes-trans-am-in-white-house-dri,2718/

Patrick Fitzgerald http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2012-10-22/news/ct-biz-1022-patrick-fitzgerald--20121022_1_skadden-s-chicago-fitzgerald-law-firms

"And, you know, politics aside, the success of Sarah Palin and women like her is good for all women — except, of course, those who will end up, you know, like, paying for their own rape kit ’n’ stuff. But for everybody else, it’s a win-win. Unless you’re a gay woman who wants to marry your partner of 20 years — whatever. But for most women, the success of conservative women is good for all of us. Unless you believe in evolution. You know what? Actually, I take it back. The whole thing’s a disaster." The full, unedited version of Fey’s acceptance speech can be viewed here. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/showtracker/2010/11/pbs-cuts-sarah-palin-jokes-from-tina-fey-special.html

We Can't Yield -- Not Now, Not Ever. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/shirley-sherrod/we-cant-yield-not-now-not_b_685502.html

News

A federal fraud charge against a Burbank accountant who has served as treasurer on hundreds of political campaigns centers on her work for a California state Assembly member, authorities said Sunday. Kinde Durkee was arrested Friday afternoon at the office of her firm, Durkee & Associates in Burbank, and is charged with one count of mail fraud, said FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller. The arrest was first reported by the Orange County Register. Durkee is scheduled to appear in court in Los Angeles on Tuesday. The prosecution's complaint against her "focuses on transactions involving the account of a single member of the Assembly, but our investigation is continuing," said Lauren Horwood, a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney’s office in Sacramento. The complaint itself hasn't been released. Horwood declined to identify the Assembly member whose account was allegedly involved or the period of time during which the conduct allegedly took place. Durkee has served as campaign treasurer on hundreds of federal, state and local political campaigns, including those of Sen. Dianne Feinstein and a number of California state legislators and Los Angeles City Council members. State Sen. Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana) said the FBI notified him of the arrest Friday evening and told him his campaign fund might have been the victim of embezzlement of a “substantial amount” of funds, possibly in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2011/09/campaign-treasurer-jailed-on-mail-fraud-charges.html

Protesters Interrupt Obama to Sing Support for Bradley Manning. Protesters supporting WikiLeaks suspect Bradley Manning managed to infiltrate a private fundraiser for President Barack Obama on Thursday morning in San Francisco, interrupting his remarks with a song. As Obama was speaking at the $5,000-a-plate breakfast fundraiser, California activist Naomi Pitcairn (above), sitting at one of the tables, began humming and singing a modified version of the song “Where’s Our Change?”, decrying Manning’s treatment in prison. Pitcairn removed her blazer and shirt to reveal a T-shirt with a picture of the young Army intelligence analyst who is suspected of leaking a massive cache of classified and sensitive documents to the secret-spilling site WikiLeaks. As the rest of the group at Pitcairn’s table joined in with her song, they held up signs that read “Free Bradley Manning“. “Each of us brought you $5,000 — we’ll vote for you in 2012, yes that’s true. Look at the Republicans, what else can we do,” the group sang. The protest was arranged by a new group calling itself the Fresh Juice Party. Dear Mr. President, we honor you today, sir. Each of us brought you $5,000. It takes a lot of Benjamins to run a campaign. I paid my dues, where’s our change? We’ll vote for you in 2012, yes that’s true. Look at the Republicans — what else can we do? Even though we don’t know if we’ll retain our liberties In what you seem content to call a free society. Yes, it’s true that Terry Jones is legally free To burn a people’s holy book in shameful effigy. But at another location in this country Alone in a 6 x 12 cell sits Bradley, 23 hours a day and night. The 5th and 8th Amendments say this kind of thing ain’t right, We paid our dues, where’s our change? http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2011/04/manning-protesters/

One congressional threat came from San Diego. The man, a proponent of the public option in health care, was upset with a “blue dog Democrat” http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2011/feb/11/one-congressional-threat-came-from-san-diego/

Gabrielle Giffords, motorcyclist. http://hellforleathermagazine.com/2011/01/gabrielle-giffords-motorcyclist/

DC rally shows support for struggling Democrats. http://apnews.myway.com/article/20101002/D9IJQHU80.html

How Democrats, Republicans compare. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/09/12/INH31F68GB.DTL&type=politics

Senator Harry Reid’s latest sermon on race—“I don’t know how anyone of Hispanic heritage could be a Republican"—has sparked within the GOP the predictable mix of outraged protests and guffaws. It is safe to say that the Nevada senator, fresh off of his tone-deaf praise of President Obama’s “non-Negro dialect,” is not in immediate danger of receiving an NAACP Image Award. But his clumsy outburst does provide another clue to the Democratic Party’s strategy for this fall’s congressional elections: to paint the surging GOP as a party of bigots and racists, inhospitable to Hispanic voters. Unfortunately for Republicans, the GOP leadership is playing its part perfectly—though not in the way one might expect. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-08-12/harry-reids-remark-about-hispanics-and-republicans-impact-on-gop

U.S. Democrats see good news in primary results. http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSN1120505020100811

ACORN

In 2009, O’Keefe made national headlines when he and a female cohort posed as a pimp and prostitute and visited offices of the nonprofit group ACORN around the country. Using a hidden camera, they captured footage that made it seem like ACORN workers were collaborating in human trafficking. California Attorney General Jerry Brown granted O’Keefe immunity from the state’s privacy laws in exchange for the chance to review the footage. Brown’s investigation found that Juan Carlos Vera, a National City ACORN employee fired after the tapes aired, did nothing wrong and that the video had been edited to distort what happened. In July, Vera filed a $75,000 lawsuit against O’Keefe under the Invasion of Privacy Act, which requires all parties in a confidential conversation to consent to a recording. http://www.sdcitybeat.com/sandiego/article-8518-candid-camera.html

2012 Elections

News

The Story Behind the 47 Percent Video. It took months to get the scoop that rocked the 2012 election. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/12/story-behind-47-video?page=1

More than five weeks after election day, almost all the presidential votes have been counted. Here’s what the near-final tally reveals: The election really wasn’t close. On election night, President Obama’s victory margin seemed fairly narrow – just slightly more than 2 percentage points. White House aides anxiously waited to see if Obama would surpass the 2.46-percentage-point margin by which President George W. Bush defeated Sen. John F. Kerry in 2004. They needn’t have worried. In the weeks since the election, as states have completed their counts, Obama’s margin has grown steadily. From just over 2 percentage points, it now stands at nearly 4. Rather than worry about the Bush-Kerry precedent, White House aides now brag that Obama seems all but certain to achieve a mark hit by only five others in U.S. history – winning the presidency twice with 51% or more of the popular vote. As of Friday, Obama had 50.97% of the vote to Mitt Romney’s 47.3% with 47 states having certified their final count, according to the statistics compiled assiduously by David Wasserman of the Cook Political Report. http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-three-lessons-from-the-nearfinal-popular-vote-20121214,0,3119021.story

Wealthy Presidential Campaign Donors Driving The Election. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/21/factbox-the-wealthy-behin_n_1995115.html

It looks like Ron Paul is running for president again—and libertarians everywhere have reason to cheer. After the big government conservatism of the George W. Bush era, their ideas seem finally ascendant—and now they have two standard-bearers competing for the Republican nomination in 2012. While the Paul family—recently dubbed "the libertarian Kennedys" by Politico—suck up the media oxygen, there is a comparatively little known but more electorally accomplished libertarian running for president—former two-term New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-04-26/ron-paul-cant-win-2012-presidential-race-gary-johnson-can/?cid=hp:mainpromo2

Was Ronald Reagan a secret snitch? During the 1940s, he simply told the FBI what he told others publicly about communist influences in Hollywood. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-meroney-reagan-20101212,0,337005.story

Republicanism is a Mental Disease

The political media adopted the phrase “Mittness Protection Program” to refer to what? limiting media appearances. It’s awfully fun today to read a stupid, gloating quote like this one, from Romney aide Lenny Alcivar: “When this election is over, one of the lessons that will be learned by the mainstream media is that they no longer have a toe-hold on how Americans receive their news. Never before—in a way that has taken Democrats off stride—have we seen the confluence of an aggressive online community, led by Breitbart, and an aggressive campaign team not willing to cede an inch of ground to Democrats. This combination has created a new political reality. We no longer allow the mainstream media to define the political realities in America. The rise of Breitbart, Drudge and others, combined with an aggressive Romney campaign is a powerful tool in the arsenal of the conservative movement … The governor will no longer allow the mainstream media to dictate the terms of this debate. This is just the beginning … We are witnessing the rise of the center-right media.” http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/12/27/the-ultimate-2012-quiz.html

How many 14 tear olds did Romney help today? How many businesses did he bankrupt today? How many workers did he layoff today?

Who wouldn't help a 14 year old? The story behind Mitt Romney’s loss in the presidential campaign to President Obama. http://www.boston.com/news/politics/2012/president/2012/12/23/the-story-behind-mitt-romney-loss-the-presidential-campaign-president-obama/2QWkUB9pJgVIi1mAcIhQjL/story.html?p1=Well_MostPop_Emailed1

Fiscal Cliff Fictions: Let’s All Agree to Pretend the GOP Isn’t Full of It http://swampland.time.com/2012/11/30/fiscal-cliff-fictions-lets-all-agree-to-pretend-the-gop-isnt-full-of-it/

Congratulations Mitt Romney, a Good Republican!

Focus on the Family founder James Dobson, now the host of Family Talk, admitted on his radio program today that the National Day of Prayer Task Force, chaired by his wife Shirley Dobson, were praying for Obama to be defeated on Election Day. Religious Right activists have lambasted Obama with false smears that he had “cancelled” the National Day of Prayer and defended the event as “not politically inclined,” even though it regularly hosted anti-Obama speakers like David Jeremiah and Harry Jackson and both Dobsons are closely tied to the GOP. But during an interview with Concerned Women for America president Penny Nance, Dobson gave away the game and said that his wife and Task Force vice-chair John Bornschein put together an election season prayer effort that they hoped will defeat Obama. http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/dobson-admits-national-day-prayed-obama-defeat

http://thecontributor.com/eat-your-spinach-or-how-i-learned-stop-worrying-and-vote-romney

A Romney Future https://www.youtube.com/embed/6TiXUF9xbTo

Obama for president. The nation has been well served by President Obama's steady leadership. And Mitt Romney has demonstrated clearly that he's the wrong choice. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/editorials/la-ed-end-president-20121021,0,3229774.story

Ouch! "Salt Lake Tribune," Citing Romney's 47-Percent Rant, Endorses Obama. http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2012/10/romney-salt-lake-tribune-endorsement-obama

Mitt Romney: The Great Deformer. Oct 15, 2012 Is Romney really a job creator? Ronald Reagan’s budget director, David Stockman, takes a scalpel to the claims. http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2012/10/14/david-stockman-mitt-romney-and-the-bain-drain.html

Romney bully Romney draft dodger Romney cultist Romney supernatural Romney bush Romney cheney Romney war Romney iraq Romney coal Romney liberal Romney flip flop Romney no character Romney meaningless Romney lacking Romney nothing Romney no values

Georgia Rep. Paul Broun said in videotaped remarks that evolution, embryology and the Big Bang theory are "lies straight from the pit of hell" meant to convince people that they do not need a savior. The Republican lawmaker made those comments during a speech Sept. 27 at a sportsman's banquet at Liberty Baptist Church in Hartwell. Broun, a medical doctor, is running for re-election in November unopposed by Democrats. "God's word is true," Broun said, according to a video posted on the church's website. "I've come to understand that. All that stuff I was taught about evolution and embryology and Big Bang theory, all that is lies straight from the pit of hell. And it's lies to try to keep me and all the folks who are taught that from understanding that they need a savior." Broun also said that he believes the Earth is about 9,000 years old and that it was made in six days. Those beliefs are held by fundamentalist Christians who believe the creation accounts in the Bible to be literally true. Broun spokeswoman Meredith Griffanti told the Athens Banner-Herald (http://bit.ly/Us4O0Z ) that Broun was recorded speaking off-the-record to a church group about his religious beliefs. He sits on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology. It seems unlikely that Broun's remarks were supposed to be kept private. The banquet was advertised, Broun spoke before an audience and the video of his remarks was posted on the church's website. http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2012/10/06/us/ap-us-congressman-creationism-.html?ref=news&_r=0

A Michigan pastor that appeared with Paul Ryan at a campaign event on Monday said earlier this year that Romney is not a Christian. The pastor who delivered a passionate invocation at Paul Ryan’s rally in Rochester, Michigan on Monday evening told CNN earlier this year that the man at the top of the Republican ticket, Mitt Romney, is not a Christian… Clark spoke to CNN about Romney’s Mormon faith after a February rally for Santorum in Lansing. Asked if he believes Romney is a Christian, Clark answered: “No.” http://freethoughtblogs.com/dispatches/2012/10/13/anti-romney-pastor-appears-with-ryan/

The fact that the numbers of Protestants and members of other religious affiliations are in decline in the U.S. should surprise no one. Since the early 1980s, religion in this country has been politicized as a wedge issue. The religious right wing of the GOP has used its political power to demonize those it disagrees with. Leaders such as Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, Ralph Reed and Tony Perkins have made plenty of money while espousing beliefs with questionable biblical merits that are in sync with the GOP platform. As the article stated, young people today don't buy into the hate-filled rhetoric of these people, but are looking elsewhere for a message of tolerance, charity and love for their fellow person. The "religious leaders" just don't get it, and their dwindling supporters are proof. Mike Lockridge Mission Viejo http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/letters/la-le-1012-friday-america-religion-20121012,0,6401677.story

Romney met Doherty at a Christmas party. During a radio show interview, Doherty’s friend recounted a different version of Romney’s meeting with Doherty. “He actually approached him, using this private gathering as basically a political venture to further his image. And Glen just believed it to be very insincere and stale,” said Elf Ellefsen, Doherty’s friend. "I don't trust Romney. He shouldn't make my son's death part of his political agenda. It's wrong to use these brave young men, who wanted freedom for all, to degrade Obama,” said Barbara Doherty, Glen’s mother. Read more: http://www1.whdh.com/news/articles/local/12008755850115/mother-of-navy-seal-killed-in-libya-speaks-out/#ixzz28xMOx4WI

Slain ex-US Navy Seal Glen Doherty's mother rebukes Romney. The mother of an American killed in last month's Libya consulate attack has said his death has been used by the Romney campaign for political purposes. The Republican presidential nominee has been citing his meeting some years ago with former US Navy Seal Glen Doherty. His campaign said the candidate would respect Barbara Doherty's wishes and stop mentioning her son. The attack on the consulate in Benghazi on 11 September has become a political issue ahead of the election. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-19905786

But it’s worth pointing out another dynamic that’s been overlooked here: The escalating disaster that is Paul Ryan. At the time of his selection, a number of pundits argued Ryan’s strategic benefits, suggesting he would boost Romney by energizing conservatives, or by allowing Romney to run as the candidate of big ideas, or that he would at least be the party’s best defender of the Medicare plan Romney was going to have to defend whether he wanted to or not. This seemed like a stretch at the time—after all, Ryan’s Medicare plan proved to be a massive liability the one time voters weighed in on it. But who could say for sure? Well, fast forward a month-and-a-half and the numbers look pretty persuasive. This week the New York Times released a set of polls, conducted by Quinnipiac, assessing the state of the race in Ohio and Florida. The top-line numbers were jaw-dropping enough: Obama’s lead in Ohio grew from six to ten over the last month, and from three to nine in Florida. (It’s better to focus on the change here than the magnitude, which is highly sensitive to polling methodology.) But once you look at the internal numbers, they’re even less kind to Romney. More to the point, they suggest Ryan has done enormous damage to the ticket. http://www.tnr.com/blog/107829/47-was-bad-romney-ryan-has-been-deadly#

John Bolton, former U.S. ambassador to the UN and vocal critic of the Obama administration, is often sought after by the media for his opinion on foreign policy issues, but his stake in the presidential election -- as a foreign policy adviser to Mitt Romney -- is rarely, if ever, disclosed by the outlets that publish him. In addition to editorials in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Times, and appearances on Fox News that left Bolton's ties to Romney undisclosed, a Media Matters review found editorials in five additional publications written or co-written by Bolton that left out that key information. In total, Bolton wrote seven editorials that were critical of Obama's policies for The New York Times, Christian Science Monitor, The Washington Examiner, The Weekly Standard and the National Review after he became affiliated with the Romney campaign. None of those op-eds identified Bolton as a member of the Romney team. However, three of those outlets -- the Times, Monitor, and the Examiner -- have reported separately on Bolton's position in the campaign. http://mediamatters.org/blog/2012/09/21/john-bolton-the-medias-favorite-undisclosed-rom/190060

Romney says he would represent '100%' of 1% of Americans. http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-romney-latinos-20120919,0,3296495.story

Romney and the GOP still toe the Bush line. Republican leaders are sick and tired of Democrats blaming all the nation's problems on George W. Bush, and of being tarnished by the former president's legacy. From walrus-mustached former U.N Ambassador John Bolton, to Bush's brother Jeb, to Fox News host Sean Hannity (who seldom lets a guest criticize Bush without pointing out that President Obama has been running the country for years), to "tea party" activists who since the 2008 elections have been complaining that Bush's failures could be blamed on the fact that he was not sufficiently conservative, the GOP would seem to wish Bush's name could be erased from the history books. And that would be fine, if Republicans also repudiated Bush's policies. They haven't. Not only do Mitt Romney's ideas appear to gibe with Bush's on almost every particular, the Republican Party platform reads as if it could have been written by the Bush administration. The extraordinary mistakes made during Bush's eight-year presidency in the arenas of foreign policy, environmental protection and taxing and spending -- the ones that worsened relations between the U.S. and its allies and rivals around the world, caused the deficit to skyrocket and produced deadly environmental disasters -- almost certainly would be repeated by a Romney administration and/or a Republican Congress. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/opinion-la/la-ol-bush-republicans-20120914,0,1593687.story

The DNC was packed full of the folks Republicans are trying to take their country back from: gay couples, inter-racial couples, non-Cuban Latinos, workers, non-billionaires, “sluts,” immigrants, African-Americans, liberals, civil servants, Reagan Democrats and women who aren't just a Republican's mom. Basically what America (love it or leave it) now looks like. The DNC looked like America in 2012. The RNC looked like America in 1912. http://thecontributor.com/editors-contribution/review-rnc-v-dnc

During the primary season, GOP candidates tried to outdo each other promising voters that they would slash and burn the federal government, even though Texas Gov. Rick Perry couldn't quite count to three. During his political career, Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) has called for the elimination of almost everything, including the FBI, and he has built a substantial following among GOP activists. His son Rand called for the repeal of the Civil Rights Act and was elected to the Senate in 2010. But DuRon's observation is revealing in a different way. Republicans since Ronald Reagan have generally been quite vague about which government agencies they propose to gut, knowing that to offer such specifics risks alienating voters who quite like those programs. Instead, they have promised tax cuts and more tax cuts. The goal here is to "starve the beast," a strategy pushed by Grover Norquist, another of those Republicans DuRon should take note of. By shrinking government revenue through tax cuts, the reasoning goes, federal programs will have to be eliminated. Norquist has persuaded many Republicans in Congress to sign his "no new tax" pledge, which allows politicians to promise lower taxes without having to specify what citizens will lose in return. Those of a certain age will remember the name David Stockman; he was Ronald Reagan's whiz-kid budget director charged with implementing the president's tax-cut, trickle-down policies designed to shrink the federal government. Those policies didn't work, and Stockman resigned in disgust in 1985. In a 2009 interview, Stockman told a reporter: "The Republican Party has totally abdicated its job in our democracy, which is to act as the guardian of fiscal discipline and responsibility. They're on an anti-tax jihad, one that benefits the prosperous classes." And while the prosperous classes benefit from it, the other inevitable result of that jihad is a gutted federal government for the rest of us. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/letters/la-le-0908-postscript-conn-big-government-20120908,0,6745305.story

GOP Grassroots Furious at Romney Over Akin, Abortion Rape Exception. Anti-abortion activists are incensed at the candidate’s claim that he wouldn’t ban abortion for victims of rape—and at his rejection of Todd Akin, who’s trying to capitalize on that anger with a fundraising push. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/08/23/gop-grassroots-furious-at-romney-over-akin-abortion-rape-exception.html

Romney's used Mormon Church to launder money. The newly released documents confirm that among these 21 funds, two set up a total of five so-called "blocker corporations" which allow U.S. non-profit entities to legally pretend to be foreign (i.e., Cayman) corporations in order to avoid the 35% "unrelated business income tax, which was created to prevent nonprofit groups from undertaking profit-making ventures that compete with taxpaying companies," http://www.angrybearblog.com/2012/08/lid-blowing-off-romney-tax-secrecy.html#more

Romney: My Mormon tithing should be private. http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-57499296-503544/romney-my-mormon-tithing-should-be-private/

Sher Valenzuela, GOP's 'We Built It' Speaker, Received Millions In Government Loans. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/24/sher-valenzuela-we-built-it_n_1828847.html

Mitt Rmney was born in Mexico http://thecontributor.com/2012-election/romney-brags-no-one-has-ever-asked-see-my-birth-certificate

In a 2005 speech, Ryan cited Ayn Rand as a key reason he went into politics. He said that he had made "Atlas Shrugged" required reading for his staff, and that he still liked to check his "premises" against passages from the book to be sure "that what I'm believing and doing and advancing are square with the key principles of individualism." Lately, because Rand didn't believe in God and because "Atlas Shrugged" celebrates an adulterous relationship between two of its main characters, Ryan has distanced himself from his former remarks, telling the National Review recently, "I reject her philosophy. It's an atheist philosophy." These days, he said in the interview, he favors Thomas Aquinas over Rand. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-schneider-atlas-shrugged-reviews-20120826,0,4069894.story

Todd Akin and the Anti-Science House Science Committee. http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2012/08/house-committee-science/

no body trusts romney

Jump on the Rand Wagon! How Ryan Resurrected Ayn. How everyone’s favorite spouse-swapping, godless pulp novelist and dorm-room doyenne became the Tea Party’s new mascot. http://observer.com/2012/08/paul-ryan-ayn-rand-atlas-shrugged/

romney Legitimate Rape ryan rapist priest Akin Legitimate Rape romney

romney lying sack of shit ryan deceitful romney liar ryan bigot

Norquist, the man famous for convincing a huge swath of congressional Republicans to pledge to not raise taxes, was responding to a jab from the former President Bush last month in an interview with PARADE magazine. “The rigidity of those pledges is something I don’t like,” Bush said in the interview. “The circumstances change and you can’t be wedded to some formula by Grover Norquist. It’s – who the hell is Grover Norquist, anyway?” Norquist also responded to comments made by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush opposing the Norquist pledge, saying in June at a congressional hearing, “I don’t believe you outsource your principles and convictions to people.” “Something that both Jeb Bush should have been a little bit aware of, and his father, that commitment that most Republicans who run for office make is to the American people and to the people of their state,” Norquist said in response. “And Jeb Bush decided not to promise the people of Florida that he wouldn’t raise taxes, but he had a fairly good Republican legislature, so he never had a tax increase while he was governor.” Norquist made his comments during a special “This Week” panel, in partnership with the University of Virginia’s Miller Center, on the question “Is the U.S. Headed Toward Bankruptcy?” http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/08/grover-norquist-george-h-w-bush-lied-to-the-american-people/

Republicanism is a Mental Disease archived August 2012

Rep. Todd Akin, the newly-christened GOP Senate nominee in Missouri, said in an interview airing Sunday that “legitimate rape” rarely causes pregnancy. Explaining his no-exceptions policy on abortions, Akin was asked why he opposes abortion even when the pregnancy is the result of rape. “First of all, from what I understand from doctors, (pregnancy from rape) is really rare,” Akin told KTVI-TV in a clip posted to YouTube by the Democratic super PAC American Bridge. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.” Akin added: “But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something. I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist and not attacking the child.” http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2012/08/19/todd-akin-gop-senate-candidate-legitimate-rape-rarely-causes-pregnancy/

Mr. Romney’s ‘garbage’ ORMER GOVERNOR Mitt Romney, the presumed Republican nominee for president, promises to lower everyone’s income tax rate without reducing revenue. This sounds terrific. Why didn’t we think of it sooner? Mr. Romney says that he can achieve this seemingly magical result by “broadening the base” for income tax collection. This, too, sounds great. In principle, everyone favors “broadening the base,” also known as closing loopholes. But everyone favors closing someone else’s loopholes: those of oil companies, say, or of plutocrats who park their money in the Cayman Islands. Recently the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, a joint venture of the Urban Institute and the Brookings Institution, showed that Mr. Romney’s plan would by necessity help the rich and hurt the middle class. In an interview with Fortune magazine last week, Mr. Romney took strong issue with this conclusion. “They made garbage assumptions and they reached a garbage conclusion,” he said. Contrary to the center’s assumption, he said, he would not take away middle-class tax breaks for “homeownership, charitable giving and health care.” http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/mr-romneys-garbage/2012/08/18/d109ac74-e883-11e1-8487-64e4b2a79ba8_story.html

Asked by Hume when the Romney plan would balance the budget, Ryan said he didn't know because "we haven't run the numbers on that specific plan." http://mediamatters.org/blog/2012/08/15/we-havent-run-the-numbers-a-startling-ryan-admi/189369

Scott Taylor Ben Smith Scooter Libby traitors phonies Chad Kolton, a former spokesman for the office of Director of National Intelligence during the George W. Bush administration who now represents OPSEC, also said the group's message is aimed to make Obama fail, the group only allows republicans as members. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/15/opsec-special-forces_n_1777538.html

"It's funny because Iowans and Wisconsinites, we like to be respectful of one another and be peaceful with one another and listen to each other," remarked Ryan. "These guys must not be from Iowa or Wisconsin." http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504365_162-5222602-504365.html

gutter head romney rove cheney filth swift boat it's politics live with it

"They have tried to sell us this trickle-down fairy dust before, and guess what? It didn't work."

“Governor Romney is talking nonsense," Wyden said in an emailed statement Saturday night. "Bipartisanship requires that you not make up the facts. I did not ‘co-lead a piece of legislation.' I wrote a policy paper on options for Medicare." Wyden noted he had spoken and voted against the Medicare provisions in the Ryan budget. "Governor Romney needs to learn you don't protect seniors by makings things up, and his comments sure won't help promote real bipartisanship,” he added. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/12/ron-wyden-paul-ryan_n_1770611.html?utm_hp_ref=politics

“Our rights come from nature and God, not from government. That's who we are,” he said. “That's how Christians built this country. That's who we are. That's what made us great. That's our founding. If you are not a Christian you have no rights.” http://www.advocate.com/politics/election/2012/08/11/ryan-rights-come-nature-and-god-not-government

Paul Ryan is the Kindest, Bravest, Warmest, Most Wonderful Congressman I've Ever Known. http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2012/08/paul-ryan-kindest-bravest

On Saturday morning, Obama campaign manager Jim Messina blasted out an email responding to the Ryan VP pick. "This election is about values, and today Romney doubled down on his commitment to take our country back to the failed policies of the past," the statement read. http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2012/08/rep-paul-ryan-mitt-romney-running-mate-vp

"The way to understand him is he is Dick Cheney, he is a guy who went to Washington as soon as he could, rooted himself in the establishment, got himself elected as soon as he could and became a major player," said John Nichols, an associate editor at the Capital Times in Madison. "He is Dick Cheney with very good hair." http://mediamatters.org/blog/2012/08/12/what-wisconsin-journalists-want-you-to-know-abo/189288

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Leave it to Willard Romney, international man of principle, to get himself bullied into being bold and independent. Make no mistake. In his decision to make Paul Ryan, the zombie-eyed granny-starver from Wisconsin, his running mate, Romney finally surrendered the tattered remnants of his soul not only to the extreme base of his party, but also to extremist economic policies, and to an extremist view of the country he seeks to lead. This is unimaginable to those of us who lived here under Romney's barely perceptible stewardship of the Commonwealth (God save it!). If he'd even hinted that he agreed with a fraction of a smidgen of a portion of the policies on which Ryan has built his career, Romney would have been hanging from the Sacred Cod by the middle of 2005. And it's hard not to notice that the way the decision got leaked — in the dead of a Friday night, with the Olympics still going on, after two weeks in which Romney and his campaign had demonstrated all the political skills of a handball — fairly dripped with flopsweat. http://www.esquire.com/blogs/politics/paul-ryan-romney-vp-pick-11562917#ixzz23LNaulrv

Ayn Rand was out of her Vulcan mind. This is a simple fact that can be verified by anyone with even minimal Google skills. She was the Albert Schweitzer of Selfishness and the Mother Theresa of Greed all rolled into one. This, naturally, makes her a hero to the Right and qualifies her for sainthood. Too bad she was an Atheist. Her philosophy, so she said, was one of pure reason, unstained by taudry emotion. But as sane people know, one of the quirks of being a human is serving the heart as well as the mind. Ayn Rand believed you should only serve yourself. In her world, everyone was free to agree with her version of individual freedom and all others were worthy of contempt and scorn. She considered altruism immoral and selfishness a virtue. Ayn Rand called her philosophy “Objectivism”. For the layman, “Objectivism” is Latin for “I don’t give a shit about anyone but myself.” It’s self-absorption with a bow on top. She makes the Kardashians look like Anna Karenina. “The best aspect of Christmas, is that Christmas has been commercialized.” – Ayn Rand Her most famous and last novel is “Atlas Shrugged”, a 1200 page Caligula of Capitalism set slightly in the future of America. In this tome, the heroes are all titans of industry and anyone else with less talent or less money is referred to as a “looter”. Aren’t these the same looters that made these titans wealthy? Thereupon is one of the biggest disconnects in the novel, that these wealthy supermen somehow attained their fortune in a vacuum. To show the world how unappreciated they are, and how the country couldn’t get along without them, the novel’s chief hero, John Galt, organizes a strike. (how Leftist of him!) Galt somehow manages to convince the rest of the country’s titans to follow suit , causing the collapse of the entire economy and untold suffering. And this, dear readers, is the HERO. Drive safely. http://sandiegofreepress.org/2012/08/i-me-mine-the-unholy-trinity-of-ayn-rand/

Paul Ryan announced as Romney's running mate. The conservative Club for Growth said the pick "sends the message that Gov. Romney is interested in bold reforms. Paul Ryan represents a bold return the The Bush era policies which produced record economic results in 2008. Paul Ryan is a Washington insider with a plan of courageous reforms to transfer wealth from the middle class to the wealthy where it will be best used." "A Romney-Ryan ticket is a weapon of mass destruction unapologetically pointed at our Social Security, our Medicare and our hopes for maintaining a modest, middle class lifestyle during our retirement years," said Eric Kingson, co-founder of the Social Security Coalition and Nancy Altman, co-director of the Social Security Works. http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-reaction-to-paul-ryan-vp-choice-is-swift-polarizing-20120811,0,5743504.story

Ryan pick cements lack of military service in presidential race

Ryan won his seat in 1998, at the age of twenty-eight. Like many young conservatives, he is embarrassed by the Bush years. At the time, as a junior member with little clout, Ryan was a reliable Republican vote for policies that were key in causing enormous federal budget deficits: sweeping tax cuts, a costly prescription-drug entitlement for Medicare, two wars, the multibillion-dollar bank-bailout legislation known as TARP. In all, five trillion dollars was added to the national debt. In 2006 and 2008, many of Ryan’s older Republican colleagues were thrown out of office as a result of lobbying scandals and overspending. Ryan told me recently that, as a fiscal conservative, he was “miserable during the last majority” and is determined “to do everything I can to make sure I don’t feel that misery again.” Ryan is the problem not the solution. http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2012/08/06/120806fa_fact_lizza#ixzz23FZ33U9i

Romney Met Thursday with Top Anti-Muslim Activist and Leading Backers of Bachmann Witch Hunt. http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/romney-met-thursday-top-anti-muslim-activist-and-leading-backers-bachmann-witch-hunt

Military Veterans Blast Romney for Supporting Voter Suppression. http://soapblox.net/2012-election/military-veterans-blast-romney-supporting-voter-suppression

On a stage crowded with war heroes, Mitt Romney recently praised the sacrifice "of the great men and women of every generation who serve in our armed services." It is a sacrifice the Republican presidential candidate did not make. Though an early supporter of the Vietnam War, Romney avoided military service at the height of the fighting after high school by seeking and receiving four draft deferments, according to Selective Service records. They included college deferments and a 31-month stretch as a "minister of religion" in France, a classification for Mormon missionaries that the church at the time feared was being overused. The country was cutting troop levels by the time he became eligible for the draft, and his lottery number was not called. http://www.boston.com/news/politics/articles/2012/06/05/romneys_non_military_record_faces_new_scrutiny/

THINGS WRONG WITH HASSETT, HUBBARD, MANKIW, AND TAYLOR, "THE ROMNEY PROGRAM FOR ECONOMIC RECOVERY, GROWTH, AND JOBS" HHMT: We are presently in the most anemic economic recovery in the memory of most Americans, with significant joblessness and long-term unemployment, as well as lost income and savings. WRONG: We are in the worst downturn, but we are not in the “most anemic” recovery--the recovery of 2001-2004 was more anemic. HHMT should know: three of them held high federal office in the George W. Bush administration that managed that recovery,and back then all four attempted (uncovincingly, IMHO) to rebut claims from people (like me) that the early 2000s recovery was anemic and that more stimulative policies were then needed. Why don’t HHMT make the true claim that we are in the worst downturn? Why do they make the wrong claim that we are in the most anemic recovery? Because they do not want to talk about how back when they were in office they played their role in failing to use their leverage to argue for more expansionary fiscal and monetary policies to speed the then-recovery. Why weren’t HHMT arguing, back in 2001-4, either inside or outside the government, for more expansionary fiscal and monetary policies to speed the then-recovery? I don’t know. Those of us who were so arguing would have found their help most welcome. http://delong.typepad.com/sdj/2012/08/things-wrong-with-hassett-hubbard-mankiw-and-taylor-the-romney-program-for-economic-recovery-growth-and-jobs.html

Conservatives tend more strongly towards authoritarianism, a personality type or disposition associated with an intolerance of ambiguity and seeing the world in sharply defined, black and white terms. Authoritarianism is not a "quality of reasoning" measure either, but this is a trait that has been associated with reasoning errors, such as committing the Fundamental Attribution Error (FAE), and also with more selective exposure to friendly sources of information. On a moral level, conservatives are more group oriented—more likely to affirm loyalty to the unit, the tribe, the team—and more respectful of authority. This is based on Jonathan Haidt’s work, but it also echoes the research on authoritarianism. http://soapblox.net/are-conservatives-inherently-more-biased-liberals-scientific-debate-rages

Meet Michele Bachmann’s Anti-Muslim Tutors. http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/07/michele_bachmanns_frank_gaffney.php

Republicans profess an unmatched love of country, but what they have is an unmatched disdain for the people who inhabit it. http://obrag.org/?p=63425&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+obrag%2FIrDB+%28OB+Rag%29

For the period January 2003 – January 2007, the Romney record on state government job growth is compared against the national state employment aggregate. Likewise, private sector job growth in Massachusetts is compared against the national private sector aggregate, thus, benchmarking the Romney record against the national record. The comparisons make clear that state government employment increased 2.8% in Massachusetts, more than twice the national state government employment aggregate of 1.1%. Private sector employment over the same period in Massachusetts increased 1.4%, less than a quarter of the national aggregate of 5.9%. It should be noted that this comparative performance decrement mirrors economic growth in the state as annual real GDP grew 1.6% over Romney’s tenure, as opposed to an annual increase of 2.7% nationally. http://www.angrybearblog.com/2012/07/guest-postthe-romney-job-record-in.html

Later in the interview, Malkin slammed President Obama’s supporters. “Romney types, of course, are the ones who sign the front of the paycheck, and the Obama types are the one who have spent their entire lives signing the back of them,” she said. http://www.mediaite.com/tv/malkin-slams-presidents-supporters-romney-supporters-sign-front-of-paychecks-obamas-sign-the-back/

Endorsed by Ronald Reagan upon its inception in 1986, the Taxpayer Protection Pledge — which Norquist says he came up with when he was 12-years-old — has been signed by over 1,100 state office holders as well as 238 current House members and 41 current Senators. http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/norquist-tax-pledge-house/2012/06/22/id/443108

Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld Diagnosed as 'Waraholics' With the Democrats and the mainstream media enabling them, administration leaders are five years into a major war binge. They won't stop until they've hit bottom.

Mitt Romney is locked in a pitched fight over whether he left Bain Capital in 1999, when he took a job running the Olympics, or stayed involved in the firm over the next several years. The battle has swelled to a dizzying multi-front conflict encompassing both presidential campaigns, a horde of fact-checkers and reporters and Bain Capital itself. Why the war over a seemingly simple line on Romney’s resume? The answer is actually critical: A heap of attack ads are based on deals Bain made during that gray period, 1999-2002, when Romney was in Salt Lake City. Countless Obama campaign ads take Romney’s tenure at Bain — which Romney touts as one of his most valuable qualifications for office — and turn it on its head by accusing Romney of profiting off companies that outsourced, laid off workers, cut benefits or made Bain money as they went bankrupt. Media fact checkers have consistently slammed the ads, objecting to the fact that the Bain investments in question happened after 1999, when Romney says he left the company, thereby absolving him of blame. http://2012.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/07/why-the-timing-of-mitt-romneys-bain-exit-matters-a-guide.php

do you trust Mitt Romney? Did you trust Dick Cheney? George W Bush? Nixon? Limbaugh? Beck?

The president whose legacy is partly defined by three words -- "no new taxes" -- seems to care little about the ubiquitous pledge that touts the same phrase. In an interview with Parade magazine to be published Sunday, former President George H.W. Bush pans the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, the Grover Norquist-backed anti-tax oath that politicians sign to promise they will never vote for a tax increase. In the 112th Congress, 238 representatives and 41 senators -- all but three of them Republicans -- have taken the pledge. "The rigidity of those pledges is something I don’t like," Bush said. "The circumstances change and you can’t be wedded to some formula by Grover Norquist. It’s -- who the hell is Grover Norquist, anyway?" His wife, former First Lady Barbara Bush, did not mince her words either when it came to the anti-tax crusader. "I think he ought to go back to Alaska," she said, referring to previous comments she made about Sarah Palin in a 2010 interview. "Don't quote me!" President Bush's remarks echo a similar sentiment shared by House Speaker John Boehner last year. The Ohio Republican told reporters that it is "not often I'm asked about some random person in America" when pressed whether Norquist was a positive or negative force for the House GOP conference. Norquist told "The Daily Show" in February that he came up with the idea for the pledge when he was 12 years old, about the same time that Bush served in the House of Representatives. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/13/grover-norquist-george-hw-bush_n_1671106.html

Cheney: Romney the 'only' choice for handling foreign policy crisis. Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/07/13/cheney-romney-only-choice-for-handling-foreign-policy-crisis/

Cheney and Romney served together in the same Army Ranger Platoon in Viet Nam in 1968 and '69. Together they killed over 1,000 NVA and Viet Cong and both were awarded the Bronze Star for bravery. In 1969 they teamed with John McCain on a secret mission to Cambodia.

Meet the legions of wingnuts who think Andy Griffith was a communist and want him to burn in hell. http://boingboing.net/2012/07/05/meet-the-legions-of-wignuts-wh.html

"In their policy of ensuring that Obama is a 'one-term president,' Republicans have put partisan politics first and Americans (except for the top 1%) a distant second. Corporations have helped, refusing to open their purse of trillions in cash hoards for new hires, instead demanding more and more from their vastly shrunken workforces. Perhaps Obama could have been more forceful in some areas, but he faces a formidable wall of obstructionism, which should be considered in any appraisal or discussion of his performance." http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/letters/la-le-0623-postscript-obama-republicans-20120623,0,2513099.story

Eighty one percent of Republicans, and 100 percent of Fox viewers overall, think that President Barack Obama is a Muslim

A Roman Catholic church official was convicted Friday of child endangerment but acquitted of conspiracy in a groundbreaking clergy-abuse trial, becoming the first U.S. church official convicted of a crime for how he handled abuse claims. Monsignor William Lynn helped the archdiocese keep predators in ministry, and the public in the dark, by telling parishes their priest was being removed for health reasons and then sending the men to unsuspecting churches, prosecutors said. http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/06/22/12359748-roman-catholic-church-official-convicted-of-endangerment-in-priest-abuse-trial

Newt Gingrich's third wife , is a devout Catholic Gingrich and his third wife, Callista who Newt Gingrich and Monsignor William Lynn to restore faith in presidency with faith in God. http://www.catholic.org/politics/story.php?id=43957

Newt Gingrich Monsignor William Lynn Callista Gingrich Rick Santorum Monsignor William Lynn Karen Santorum Monsignor William Lynn rapist

At Rally, Catholic Bishop Warns Obama Is ‘Following A Similar Path’ To Hitler, Stalin http://nation.foxnews.com/president-obama/2012/04/18/rally-catholic-bishop-warns-obama-following-similar-path-hitler-stalin

Priest Sex Abuse Trial Tough on Catholics http://www.victoriabrownworth.com/2012/06/06/priest-sex-abuse-trial-tough-on-catholics/

At Bain, Romney Invested in Companies That Shipped Off American Jobs. http://news.firedoglake.com/2012/06/22/at-bain-romney-invested-in-companies-that-shipped-off-american-jobs/

“Let’s get real here,” McCain told The Hill. “There was never any outreach from President Obama or anyone in his administration to me.” McCain disputes the notion that he has rejected entreaties to cooperate with the White House because he is bitter from his defeat four years ago. He said he expressed eagerness to work with the president on immigration reform and the line-item veto, but has been left out in the cold. http://thehill.com/homenews/senate/232693-president-obama-snubbed-me-says-john-mccain

why should the President of the United States consult with a nut job?

Democrats have started coming out and saying publicly what many have been mumbling privately for years – Republicans are so intent on defeating President Obama for re-election that they are purposely sabotaging the country's economic recovery. These charges are now being levied by Democrats such as Senate majority leader Harry Reid and Obama's key political adviser, David Axelrod. For Democrats, perhaps the most obvious piece of evidence of GOP premeditated malice is the 2010 quote from Senate minority leader, Mitch McConnell: "The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president." Such words lead some to the conclusion that Republicans will do anything, including short-circuiting the economy, in order to hurt Obama politically. Considering that presidents – and rarely opposition parties – are held electorally responsible for economic calamity, it's not a bad political strategy. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/jun/09/did-republicans-deliberately-crash-us-economy

MITT ROMNEY 2012 SCOTT WALKER RECALL VICTORY MISSION ACCOMPLISHED

Image:Rom2012.jpg

Mitt Romney today flew to an aircraft carrier off the coast of Milwaukee to declare mission accomplished in the war on Obama.

ROMNEY 2012 WALKER RECALL MISSION ACCOMPLISHED

DEFENSE SUPER PAC LAUNCHES IN SAN DIEGO. “The trillion dollars in national security cuts, if allowed to pass, will be the greatest tragedy of the Obama administration,” said board member and former Republican Rep. Duncan Hunter, onetime chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/may/22/tp-defense-super-pac-launches-in-san-diego/?print&page=all

Group Declares War On Spain – Maybe – and Announces SuperPac and Bakesales http://obrag.org/?p=60899

Mitt Romney: Experimenting with hate crimes is “part of growing up, my friend.”

romney If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.

Today’s Republicans are different. They truly have put partisanship ahead of patriotism, as the political scientists Norman Ornstein and Thomas Mann document in their book, Even Worse Than it Looks. “The GOP,” they write, “has become an insurgent outlier in American politics. It is ideologically extreme; scornful of compromise; unmoved by conventional understanding of facts, evidence, and science; and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition.” http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2012/05/13/paul-begala-dick-lugar-s-fate-shows-gop-puts-party-first.html

Kinsley: Overvaluing the free market. Being paid big bucks doesn't mean that you're worth it. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-kinsley-free-market-capitalism-20120508,0,4929945.story

Romney on bullying: "I thought they liked that."

Romney had missed much of the tumultuous American anti-Vietnam War movement while away, and was surprised to learn that his father had turned against the war during his unsuccessful 1968 presidential campaign. Regarding the military draft, Romney had initially received a student deferment, then, like most Mormon missionaries, a ministerial deferment while in France, and then a student deferment. When those ran out, his high number in the December 1969 draft lottery (300) ensured he would not be selected.

“He can’t look like that. That’s wrong. Just look at him!” an incensed Romney told Matthew Friedemann, his close friend in the Stevens Hall dorm, according to Friedemann’s recollection. Mitt, the teenage son of Michigan Gov. George Romney, kept complaining about Lauber’s look, Friedemann recalled. A few days later, Friedemann entered Stevens Hall off the school’s collegiate quad to find Romney marching out of his own room ahead of a prep school posse shouting about their plan to cut Lauber’s hair. Friedemann followed them to a nearby room where they came upon Lauber, tackled him and pinned him to the ground. As Lauber, his eyes filling with tears, screamed for help, Romney repeatedly clipped his hair with a pair of scissors. The incident was recalled similarly by five students, who gave their accounts independently of one another. Four of them — Friedemann, now a dentist; Phillip Maxwell, a lawyer; Thomas Buford, a retired prosecutor; and David Seed, a retired principal — spoke on the record. Another former student who witnessed the incident asked not to be identified. The men have differing political affiliations, although they mostly lean Democratic. Buford volunteered for Barack Obama’s campaign in 2008. Seed, a registered independent, has served as a Republican county chairman in Michigan. All of them said that politics in no way colored their recollections. “It happened very quickly, and to this day it troubles me,” said Buford, the school’s wrestling champion, who said he joined Romney in restraining Lauber. Buford subsequently apologized to Lauber, who was “terrified,” he said. “What a senseless, stupid, idiotic thing to do.” “It was a hack job,” recalled Maxwell, a childhood friend of Romney who was in the dorm room when the incident occurred. “It was vicious.” “He was just easy pickin’s,” said Friedemann, then the student prefect, or student authority leader of Stevens Hall, expressing remorse about his failure to stop it. The incident transpired in a flash, and Friedemann said Romney then led his cheering schoolmates back to his bay-windowed room in Stevens Hall. http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/mitt-romneys-prep-school-classmates-recall-pranks-but-also-troubling-incidents/2012/05/10/gIQA3WOKFU_story.html?hpid=z2

Romney demands that Bin Laden be killed.

“This election is not going to be about who's cooler. The question is going to be, 'Who do you trust to run the economy?'” Peter Flaherty, senior Romney advisor, said during Saturday's Washington Post Live Newsmaker Forum. I wouldn't trust Romney to walk my dog. http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-romney-campaign-pledges-no-slow-jamming-the-news-20120429,0,3017523.story

Mitt shakes the Etch A Sketch.

Mitt W Bush George W Romney

N. Gregory Mankiw is a moral failure as well as a failed economist He ignored all of the prescient warnings we made about how accounting control fraud drove our crises and he continues to ignore those warnings and the reality of our recurrent, intensifying financial crises. He wants the U.S. to move even more rapidly downward in the “competition in regulatory laxity” that is driving those crises. http://neweconomicperspectives.org/2012/04/mankiws-ode-to-the-governmental-competition-that-made-romney-wealthy.html

Romney bush romney back to bush romney worship bush

Karl Rove vile evil out of touch anti-American

Romney dirty vile chicken-hawk

Newt Gingrich crack head

Mitt Romney vile evil American-hating sub human ted nugent

Mitt Romney is vile, evil and America-hating anti-American We need to ride into that battlefield and chop their heads off in November.

republicans are the worst nightmare for America.

Santorum is a rapist

Police on Friday announced the arrest of Michael Kobulnicky, spokesman for the San Diego Tea Party, on suspicion of kidnapping a woman and then sexually assaulting rape her on Fiesta Island last month. Kobulnicky, 50, was taken into custody about 3:45 p.m. Thursday as he was walking to his Lemon Grove home, said San Diego police Lt. Anastasia Smith. He was being held in the central jail without bail. republican rapists a public speaker espousing Christian values. rape http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/mar/16/sex-assault-suspect-tea-party-leader/

GOP Plans to Sink the Economy. Every month brings improved job news—and bleaker prospects for the Republicans in November. Which is why they’re contemplating economic sabotage as their only hope. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/03/12/michael-tomasky-on-gop-plans-to-sink-the-economy.html

republicans are morally bankrupt. they are filled with and driven by hate and self loathing.

republicans are sick fucks. I'm on a tourist train, more than half the seats are empty, some woman badmouths me "he's taking four seats." they hear this crap from hate monger like Rush Limbaugh Andrew Breitbart Newt Gingrich reagan bush Mitt Romney Rick Santorum all of them. lady you spread hate you'll get hated. republicanism must be stamped out, smashed, destroyed.

Republicans: shit for brains

Romney washing brains for 45 years.

Dummkopf Romney Dummkopf

Republicanism is a Mental Disease, archive 02/24/2012

I Want a President Who Believes in the Constitution. I'm not looking for a president who plans to head this country using the Bible as his or her basis. Controversy has been raised over a recent statement from Republican candidate Rick Santorum regarding whether President Barack Obama has been following the Bible or "a different theology" during the presidency, as reported by Reuters. I am a Christian, but when it comes to politics and governing a nation, I want a president who will use the Constitution as their basis of beliefs. I don't want a president who will put aside the Constitution as the ultimate law of the land. In the same way, I don't want a president who will govern based upon the Koran, the Talmud, the Book of Mormon or any other religious text -- even the Bible. I would support a president who believes and follows their spiritual doctrines in their daily life, but when it comes to government, the Constitution should be the doctrine to follow. Santorum has been vocal about his spiritual beliefs and I have no issue with that, but I don't want to hear about his religious practices. I want to know about his political views and his proposals to fix our country. How does he plan to address the economy and the socio-political divisions within our country? For that matter, any candidate -- including President Obama -- who wants to become our next president should be explaining to me how they intend to make changes within our nation. I don't want a president who interprets the Constitution based on their understanding of the Bible or any other religious teachings. Yes, I am a Christian, but I am not Catholic. I am not Methodist or Lutheran or Presbyterian. I don't want a president who is so narrowly focused that only one denominational or religious interpretation of scripture is the law by which the country is led. As someone who was raised Baptist, the interpretation of scriptures in churches I have attended are slightly different from those of other denominations. No, I want a president who believes in the Constitution and holds the Constitution up as the law of the land. http://news.yahoo.com/want-president-believes-constitution-010300664.html

How Rick Santorum Ripped Off American Veterans. A controversial land deal by the presidential candidate robbed a vets' home of tens of millions of dollars. http://motherjones.com/politics/2012/01/how-rick-santorum-ripped-off-american-military-veterans

Bursting the GOP's housing bubble nonsense. http://opinion.latimes.com/opinionla/2012/02/citigroup-mortgage-meltdown-quit-blaming-democrats.html

tidbits of wit, wisdom, and (mostly) weirdness from presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich. http://motherjones.com/politics/2012/01/daily-newt-gingrich-space-sex-dinosaurs

Speaking to a Lincoln Day Dinner in West Palm Beach for the Palm Beach County GOP, Rep. Allen West (R-Fla) fired off a humdinger of a line that within minutes drew recriminations from Democrats on Twitter. "We need to let President Obama, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, (audience boos) and my dear friend the chairman of the Democrat National Committee, we need to let them know that Florida ain't on the table," West said. "Take your message of equality of achievement, take your message of economic dependency, take your message of enslaving the entrepreneurial will and spirit of the American people somewhere else. You can take it to Europe, you can take it to the bottom of the sea, you can take it to the North Pole, but get the hell out of the United States of America." Following cheers, West added, "Yeah I said 'hell.'" Moments after the quote was mentioned on Twitter, former Reid spokesman Jim Manley responded via his own Twitter feed: "Me to allen west. You first asshole." And they say politics is getting more acrimonious. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/28/allen-west-liberals-get-out-florida-primary-2012_n_1239247.html

Gingrich was the prime enabler of Cunningham's corruption among many, many enablers. As a member of the team at Copley News Service that uncovered that corruption and as co-author of a book about Cunningham, I found Gingrich's role to be one of the fascinating footnotes of the Cunningham saga. It was Gingrich who championed the explosion of earmarks after Republicans gained control of the House in 1995. And it was Gingrich who rode roughshod over the objections of senior House Republicans and ordered him to get the plum committee assignments that allowed him to demand his bribes for defense and intelligence earmarks. http://decoded.nationaljournal.com/2012/01/randy-duke-cunningham-was-alwa.php

The Gingrich Ethics Probe. The following are some of the key Post stories on the House ethics investigation of Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.). http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/politics/govt/leadership/ethics.htm

Who is Saul Alinsky? A Gingrich line explained. http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2012/01/22/who-is-saul-alinsky-a-gingrich-line-explained/

House Speaker John Boehner is pathetic.

"People completely misunderstand what's going on. It's not that I'm a good debater. It's that I articulate the deepest-felt values of the American people," Gingrich told supporters during his victory speech. Ethics don't matter. Gingrich has no experience running a business and no experience running a state. Gingrich was reprimanded by the House and ordered to pay a $300,000 penalty in 1997 for violating an ethics rule. http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2012/01/22/Newt-I-represent-American-values/UPI-98451327222800/

Mit Romney Brain washed

real name? Midiot Romney; brain come pre-washed

Stumping in Iowa: Mitt Romney says he'd end Amtrak. Published: January 3, 2012. CLIVE, Iowa — Mitt Romney promised Iowa voters yesterday he’d cut all funds to Amtrak, a repeat of a promise he made in a policy statement on his website in November. Romney, who leads polls both in Iowa and nationally for the Republican nominating contest, has made the pledge before as part of his plan to balance the federal budget. “Those programs that don’t pass the following test, we get rid of,” Romney told the audience. “This is my test: Is this program so critical it’s worth borrowing money from China to pay for?” The federally owned passenger railroad was one of three programs Romney singled out for elimination as part of his effort. “Amtrak ought to stand on its own two feet, or its own wheels, or whatever you’d say,” Romney said. Amtrak’s 2012 appropriation was $1.4 billion, or roughly .02 percent of the $6.2 trillion federal budget. The other two programs Romney promised to defund were:

Red Tape and Lack of Funds Mean Trouble for Charleston Port Expansion. Four ports along the East Coast should have 50-foot harbors by the time the canal opens – New York/New Jersey, Baltimore, Norfolk and Miami. The Port of Charleston is busier than Baltimore and Miami, yet it couldn’t get any money in President Obama’s 2012 budget to fund the years-long studies it will take to approve dredging. In a last-minute bit of finagling, Graham managed to find $4.2 million to keep the process going. “We’re a red state in South Carolina,” Graham says. “It's no accident that we weren’t in Obama’s budget. If I had voted for health care – Obamacare – I bet we would have gotten our port deepened – but I’d have been at the bottom of the harbor ... so ...” http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/12/21/red-tape-and-lack-funds-mean-trouble-for-charleston-port-expansion/

What's so awful about the 1%? Occupy Wall Street has said it's the 99% of 'us' against the 1% of 'them.' But many of 'them' started out like 'us' and have brought us great innovations that we embrace. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-schiller-who-is-the-one-percent-20111204,0,1375958.story

two men in suits are watching a protest march happening on the street below them from an office tower in downtown in Los Angeles. Asked if he's part of the 99 or the one, one of the men says, "I'm part of the one that's making it so that these people here can get something from the government." After proudly saying that he's part of the one percent, the suit goes on to say "Here's the other thing: now out of the 99 percent, have you ever heard of anybody great that's come out of the 99 percent?" http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2011/11/proud_one_perce.php

A closer look at Mitt Romney's job creation record. The Republican presidential contender says he learned about expanding employment after his time heading a private equity firm. But under his leadership, Bain Capital often maximized profits in part by firing workers. That was true in the case of GS Industries, the 10th-biggest Bain investment in the Romney years. Bain formed GSI in the early 1990s by spending $24 million to acquire and merge steel companies with plants in Missouri, South Carolina and other states. Company managers cut jobs and benefits almost immediately. Meanwhile, Bain and other investors received management fees from GSI and a $65-million dividend in the first years after the acquisition, according to interviews with company employees. In 1999, as economic challenges mounted, GSI sought a federal loan guarantee intended to help steel companies compete internationally. The loan deal was approved, but in 2001, before it could be used, the company went bankrupt, two years after Romney left Bain. More than 700 workers were fired, losing not only their jobs but health insurance, severance and a chunk of their pension benefits. GSI retirees also lost their health insurance and other benefits. Bain partners received about $50 million on their initial investment, a 100% gain. "It makes me sick," said Steve Morrow, a retired GSI steelworker, recalling what happened to his fellow workers after the Kansas City shutdown. Some top managers received bonuses from Bain, he said. "But the salaried and hourly people ended up with the shaft." http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-romney-bain-20111204,0,343872.story

Issa-backed carmaker closes without energy aid. Congressman sought consideration for Solyndra-like loan for Aptera. http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2011/dec/02/carmaker-closes-without-green-energy-aid/

Virginia activist Donna Holt is among those who believe that Agenda 21—unveiled during the UN's "Earth Summit" in 1992—is really a plot to curtail private property rights and deprive Americans of precious constitutional freedoms. In reality, the document will do nothing of the sort, but it has nevertheless been the target of conspiracy-minded UN haters for years. Holt and other tea partiers are taking their cues from people like Henry Lamb, a WorldNetDaily columnist and founder of Sovereignty International and Freedom21, groups designed to fight Agenda 21 and its ilk. He has been arguing for decades that the UN is secretly plotting to herd humans into crowded cities so that the rest of the world can be devoted to wildlife preservation. (Lamb declined to comment for this story because back Mother Jones once included him in a story called Wingnuts in Sheep's Clothing, and another article that described his role in Astroturf lobbying against the Kyoto treaty.) http://motherjones.com/mojo/2011/11/newt-gingrich-name-drops-one-world-conspiracy-theory

Wake up, pond scum. America is at war against a ruthless enemy. http://frankmillerink.com/2011/11/anarchy

As the economy worsens and Election Day approaches, a conservative campaign that blames the global financial crisis on a government push to make housing more affordable to lower-class Americans has taken off on talk radio and e-mail. Commentators say that's what triggered the stock market meltdown and the freeze on credit. They've specifically targeted the mortgage finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which the federal government seized on Sept. 6, contending that lending to poor and minority Americans caused Fannie's and Freddie's financial problems. Federal housing data reveal that the charges aren't true, and that the private sector, not the government or government-backed companies, was behind the soaring subprime lending at the core of the crisis. Subprime lending offered high-cost loans to the weakest borrowers during the housing boom that lasted from 2001 to 2007. Subprime lending was at its height from 2004 to 2006. http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2008/10/12/53802/private-sector-loans-not-fannie.html

Romney presents plan to steal $500 billion from the middle class. The Republican presidential candidate tells a gathering in Washington that he would trim Social Security, cap the cost of Medicaid and restructure Medicare. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-romney-gop-20111105,0,2123697.story

FACT CHECK: GOP lawmakers spin funding tall tales. http://news.yahoo.com/fact-check-gop-lawmakers-spin-funding-tall-tales-120816229.html

The next front in the abortion wars: Birth control Mississippi debates a "Personhood" initiative that could ban the pill -- but ultimately aims at Roe v. Wade. http://www.salon.com/2011/10/26/the_next_front_in_the_abortion_wars_birth_control/singleton/

The federal government spends about $40 billion a year on transportation projects. Of that, about $928 million has been devoted to what's known as a "transportation enhancement" program, which provides funding for projects—including rails-to-trails conversions, bike lanes, and bridges—that make cycling safer, and thus more viable as a commuting option. But as Congress gears up to reauthorize the massive transportation funding bill this year, Republicans are arguing that states shouldn't be forced to use scarce transportation funds to encourage bike commuting when bridges for cars are falling down. "We’re doing all these things that, if we had extra money, if we were running a surplus, sure, nobody would really be complaining about it," Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) told the Washington Post. But, Coburn added, "We can no longer have silly priorities get in the way of real needs." States spend only about 1 percent of all transportation funds on projects devoted to cycling or pedestrian improvements. Yet Republicans see this as an area ripe for cutting. Over the summer, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) targeted DC's nascent Capitol Bikeshare program, which provides cheap rental bikes at subway stations and other strategic locations in the Washington Metro area (including northern Virginia) to encourage bike commuting. The program has been wildly successful and has inspired other cities to replicate it as a good way of reducing traffic congestion and air pollution (not to mention obesity). But Cantor sees only waste. As TBD reported in August, Cantor used the GOP's "YouCut" website to highlight Capitol Bikeshare as a foolish venture ripe for elimination. Cantor also complained that bike-sharing programs were one reason that federal transportation spending was vastly exceeding the revenues brought in by the gas tax. http://motherjones.com/mojo/2011/10/gop-hates-bikes

Governor Rick Perry kills innocent man. http://motherjones.com/mojo/2011/09/far-reaching-consequences-rick-perry-cameron-todd-willingham

Governor Rick Perry orders 1,600 homes burned. http://news.yahoo.com/politics-fighting-wildfires-did-rick-perrys-texas-enough-191900984.html

Tucson GOP to raffle gun -- 9 months after Giffords shooting. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/nationnow/2011/09/gabrielle-giffords-shooting-tucson-gop-glock-raffle.html

Millions of people are, for good reason, abandoning big-government blue states for low-tax red ones. Michael Medved on the demographic shift shaking up the electoral map. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/08/27/census-data-shows-people-are-moving-from-blue-to-red-states.html

Michael Medved is a nut. He gives that link which in no way backs up what he says about demographic shift. http://www.npr.org/2010/12/23/132234651/census-data-will-reshape-u-s-political-landscape

But the presidential candidate apparently has a very open mind toward therapies developed using adult stem cells, which can be collected from a patient's own body. So open, in fact, that on July 1 he apparently received experimental stem cell surgery on his own back. In the procedure, doctors removed some of Perry's fat cells, cultured them in a laboratory and then injected them back into his spine and bloodstream. The procedure seems to have been intended to build bone to fix a bad back. Some think stem cells isolated from fat could someday be used to generate soft tissue and bone and perhaps even help in the treatment of ailments such as heart disease. But today such treatments often have not been thoroughly vetted by researchers or approved by the FDA, and this week physicians expressed concern about Perry's operation. On Friday, an Associated Press report collected a few of their comments: Dr. George Muschler, an orthopedic surgeon at Cleveland Clinic, said that fat-derived stem cells were "'an unusual choice...quite controversial because there isn’t good evidence yet, at least in the medical literature, that fat cells work better or even work at all in repairing bones.'” Dr. Thomas Einhorn, orthopedics chairman at Boston University, said he was concerned that the procedure used to grow Perry's cells could lead to cancer cells, blood clots or infections. Dr. George Q. Daley, a past president of the International Society for Stem Cell Research, worried that the governor might be setting the wrong example for ailing patients. “'As a highly influential person of power, Perry’s actions have the unfortunate potential to push desperate patients into the clinics of quacks,' who are selling unproven treatments 'for everything from Alzheimer’s to autism,'" he said. Worries about quackery are widespread among stem cell researchers. Speaking with the Los Angeles Times earlier this year, stem cell researcher Dr. Christine Mummery of the Leiden University Medical Center, in Leiden, Netherlands, said that she gets "desperate questions" from patients, some of whom consider spending tens of thousands of dollars for unproven therapies. http://www.latimes.com/health/boostershots/la-heb-rick-perry-stem-cell-back-surgery-20110819,0,870129.story

Romney replied, “Corporations are people, my friend.” Give “The Stormin’ Mormon,” as Neil Cavuto approvingly called him on Fox News, credit: never has the traditional Republican doctrine been so succinctly explained. Of the corporation, by the corporation, for the corporation. We the corporation. Corporations who need corporations are the luckiest corporations in the world. Power to the corporation! http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/14/opinion/sunday/Dowd-power-to-the-corporation.html?_r=1&ref=opinion

"America is not broken," Perry exhorted, "The Republican Party is broken.”

'We cannot afford 4 more years of Republican Insanity' http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/washington/2011/08/rick-perry-jumps-into-the-republican-race-for-president.html

Conservative american Christians are on a holy crusade against Muslin Sharia Law. This campaign is now known as "Yeehawd"! http://www.gocomics.com/lacucaracha/2011/08/12

Bachmann trying to broaden her appeal from nut-jobs to birthers, crazies and psychopaths . With the Ames Straw Poll in Iowa drawing near, she attempts to transform herself from a niche candidate favored by a sliver of the GOP electorate into a plausible candidate for commitment to the insane asylum. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-adv-bachmann-20110730,0,3834515.story

Gingrich's campaign remains a skeleton operation. He has not moved to replace most of the consultants and staff members who left. His operations in early-voting states such as Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina rely on volunteers rather than paid staff. "I don't view him as a serious candidate and frankly I don't know anyone who does view him as a serious candidate," said Tom Perdue, a Republican strategist from Gingrich's old home state of Georgia. "It's not uncommon for a candidate to become delusional and that's what I think you are seeing here." Gingrich argues that the kind of grass-roots, Internet-driven campaign he wants to run can function with a lean staff and that he doesn't need a stable of well-paid consultants to launch the attack ads of a more traditional effort. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/16/newt-gingrich-2012-campaign_n_900623.html

you should refuse to sign pledges. Sure, the first one seems harmless. Maybe it's a pledge not to raise taxes. No problem. Then the next one is a pledge to oppose gay marriage. OK, you can do that too, even if you'd rather not. But then the next one is something like this. http://thinkprogress.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/The-Family-Leader-Presidential-Pledge.pdf

House Speaker John Boehner on Friday sent an unequivocal message: "Number one, Obama must fail. If we have to destroy the US economy to make Obama fail then that is what we will do. Republicans will protect our base of Wall Street and corporate donors but the rest of America is on it's own. Obama must fail!" http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-obama-weekly-address-20110709,0,6007565.story

White Supremacist Stampede. A startling number of white-power candidates are seeking public office. Eve Conant reports on their under-the-radar strategy and David Duke’s White House flirtation. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/07/04/white-supremacists-running-for-political-office-in-2012-in-growing-numbers.html

Michele Bachmann's Holy WarThe Tea Party contender may seem like a goofball, but be warned: Her presidential campaign is no laughing matter. don't look her in the eyes; don't let her smile at you. Michele Bachmann, when she turns her head toward the cameras and brandishes her pearls and her ageless, unblemished neckline and her perfect suburban orthodontics in an attempt to reassure the unbeliever of her non-threateningness, is one of the scariest sights in the entire American cultural tableau. She's trying to look like June Cleaver, but she actually looks like the T2 skeleton posing for a passport photo. You will want to laugh, but don't, because the secret of Bachmann's success is that every time you laugh at her, she gets stronger. In modern American politics, being the right kind of ignorant and entertainingly crazy is like having a big right hand in boxing; you've always got a puncher's chance. And Bachmann is exactly the right kind of completely batshit crazy. Not medically crazy, not talking-to-herself-on-the-subway crazy, but grandiose crazy, late-stage Kim Jong-Il crazy — crazy in the sense that she's living completely inside her own mind, frenetically pacing the hallways of a vast sand castle she's built in there, unable to meaningfully communicate with the human beings on the other side of the moat, who are all presumed to be enemies. http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/michele-bachmanns-holy-war-20110622

Bob, who is 78, is this campaign’s leading Newtologist. His study of “Newtie,” as he calls him, began during the 16 full-combat years they spent together as GOP congressman. He holds something of a grudge. But his argument mirrors what—to judge by the polls—a lot of GOP primary voters feel every time Newt opens his mouth. Bob’s argument is that Newt is a pseudo-intellectual gasbag, a moral basket case, and a political performance artist whose campaign is less a bid for the White House than a marketing blitz to pump up “Gingrich Inc.” When I call him back, Bob says he wants to do the nation a service. “I want to get this man the hell out of America’s hair!” he roars. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/06/26/newt-gingrich-vs-bob-dornan.html

A few dozen people showed up at the town hall for the April 9 event, and Bachmann greeted them warmly. But when, during the question and answer session, the topic turned to same-sex marriage, Bachmann ended the meeting 20 minutes early and rushed to the bathroom. Hoping to speak to her, Arnold and another middle-aged woman, a former nun, followed her. As Bachmann washed her hands and Arnold looked on, the ex-nun tried to talk to her about theology. Suddenly, after less than a minute, Bachmann let out a shriek. "Help!" she screamed. "Help! I'm being held against my will!" Arnold, who is just over 5 feet tall, was stunned, and hurried to open the door. Bachmann bolted out and fled, crying, to an SUV outside. Then she called the police, saying, according to the police report, that she was "absolutely terrified and has never been that terrorized before as she had no idea what those two women were going to do to her." The Washington County attorney, however, declined to press charges, writing in a memo, "It seems clear from the statements given by both women that they simply wanted to discuss certain issues further with Ms. Bachmann." http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-06-14/michele-bachmanns-unrivaled-extremism-gay-rights-to-religion

New Vacation King Newt. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/09/newt-gingrich-aides-rick-tyler_n_874452.html

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) suggested on Sunday morning that former Alaska governor Sarah Palin could defeat President Barack Obama should she run as the Republican presidential nominee in 2012. "Of course she can," said the Arizona senator of Palin's chances in the hypothetical match-up on "Fox News Sunday." He added, however, that he doesn't know whether his 2008 running mate will ultimately decide to make a run for the White House. The remarks from McCain come the same day that Palin is kicking off a bus tour of the eastern United States. The move, along with news of a documentary premiering next month on the rise of the big name Republican and her tenure as governor have stirred speculation that Palin could jump into the GOP primary race. In discussing a potential Palin 2012 campaign, McCain said, “I’ve never seen anyone as mercilessly and relentlessly attacked as I have seen Sarah Palin in the last couple of years.” According to The Hill, he added, “But she also inspires great passion, particularly among the Republican faithful." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/05/29/john-mccain-sarah-palin-c_n_868562.html

Cain mistakes Declaration of Independence language for Constitution. http://www.politifact.com/georgia/statements/2011/may/25/herman-cain/cain-mistakes-declaration-independence-language-co/

The Government is not a business.

Cain clearly believes that his pro-business message is what GOP voters want to hear. So much so, in fact, that on Saturday he officially unveiled his candidacy for the 2012 GOP nomination. But scrubbed from Cain's official story is his long tenure as a director at a Midwest energy corporation named Aquila that, like the infamous Enron Corporation, recklessly dove into the wild west of energy trading and speculation—and ultimately screwed its employees out of tens of millions of dollars. According to five lawsuits filed in federal court in 2004, Aquila's board of directors—which Cain joined in 1992—allegedly steered employees into heavily investing their retirement savings in company stock. At the same time, the company shifted its business model from straightforward energy generation to risky energy trading, an unregulated market made infamous by now-defunct Enron. The suits, later folded into a single, massive class action (PDF), alleged that Cain and top company officials violated a 37-year-old federal law requiring that employers manage employees retirement programs responsibly. (Cain's presidential exploratory committee did not respond to a request for comment.) http://motherjones.com/politics/2011/05/herman-cain-aquila-lawsuit-2012

Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels told supporters early Sunday morning that he has decided not to run for president. In an email sent just after midnight Eastern time, Daniels said that "the interests and wishes" of his family led him to decide not to make the race. http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-daniels-president-20110522,0,1072812.story

Herman Cain, a conservative radio host and former business executive, became the latest Republican to officially enter the 2012 presidential campaign on Saturday. Making a play for the "tea party" vote, Cain said at his Atlanta kick-off that America needs a new generation of "defending fathers" to protect the Constitution. "We can take this entitlement society to an empowerment society," he told the crowd at Centennial Olympic Park. http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-herman-cain-announcement-20110521,0,2503151.story

Torpedoing a GOP favorite son's budget plan, racking up a $500,000 debt at Tiffany's, succumbing to a confetti shower—Newt Gingrich has self-immolated in record time. And he's taking his party with him. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-05-18/newt-gingrich-blows-up-his-presidential-campaign-gop-field-in-ruins/

GOP presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney raised a cool $10.25 million in a single day in Las Vegas, blowing away his competition and proving again he knows how to make money. But can he translate that to winning in 2012? http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-05-17/mitt-romney-for-president-2012-will-his-10-million-fundraising-windfall-translate-to-a-win/full/full/

Tea brain Bachmann flubs Revolutionary War geography in NH. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110313/ap_on_re_us/us_bachmann_nh

Clarence Thomas' dangerous conceit. The Supreme Court justice argues that criticism of him is an attack on the court itself. But a single justice doesn't define the institution. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-turley-clarence-thomas-20110306,0,3221633.story

GOP Intellectual? http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-03-04/newt-gingrich-from-gop-intellectual-to-pandering-partisan/

On a recent winter night here, Mr. Gingrich, 67, stood on stage at a Catholic school with his wife, Callista, and introduced a film they produced about the role Pope John Paul II played in the fall of Communism in Poland. As Mr. Gingrich looked out over a crowd of 1,300 people, he warned that the United States had become too secular a society. “To a surprising degree, we are in a situation similar to Poland’s in 1979,” he told the audience, which had gathered at a banquet for Ohio Right to Life, one of the nation’s oldest anti-abortion groups. “In America, religious belief is being challenged by a cultural elite trying to create a secularized America, in which God is driven out of public life.” To most audiences, Mr. Gingrich does not talk directly about converting to Catholicism, but his faith has become an important part of his dialogue with conservative voters. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/27/us/politics/27newt-gingrich.html?_r=1

Callista Gingrich, wife of a certain presidential hopeful named Newt, is part of a very small coterie of women—mistresses who turned into the wives of powerful men. The list of political men who've had affairs is long, of course, as is the list of those who married their mistresses (or alleged mistresses) before they were well-known politicians. But very few politicians have committed the ballsy act of trading in their wives for their lovers once they were already in the public eye. Being a successful political wife is hard enough, but the mistress who becomes the wife in full view of voters will never be as good as the one she replaced, if only because popular culture tends to elevate wronged women to sainthood. Pundits and press accounts will inevitably deride the newest wife as a liability, reminding readers exactly how she got there ("adultery," notes a piece in today's Washington Post on Gingrich's announcement yesterday that he is considering a run; "an extramarital affair," explained Sunday's New York Times). But she still has to show up and clap and smile. It must be excruciating. Is it also a hopeless task? Not necessarily. Here, five tips for navigating the tricky path from political mistress to political wife. http://www.slate.com/id/2287191/

Newt Gingrich in Front of Stock Photos. http://newtinfrontofstockphotos.tumblr.com/page/3 http://motherjones.com/mojo/2011/03/newt-gingrichs-awkward-prom-photo

2010 Elections

Palin Fails

Willow Palin Facebook Posts: Homophobic Slurs, Curse Words & More. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/16/willow-palin-facebook-posts_n_784585.html

Sharron Angle "Sometimes dictators have good ideas," Sarah Palin http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/18/sharron-angle-dictators-ideas_n_785211.html

Lisa Murkowski Senate Race Victory Comes As Big Loss To Sarah Palin. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/18/lisa-murkowski-sarah-palin_n_785349.html

Palin backs looser Meg Whitman

Palin backs looser Carly Frionena

Joe Miller Asked To Concede To Lisa Murkowski By Alaska GOP. History, the GOP, the tea party, Sarah Palin and her own mouthful of a name worked against her. Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski conquered them all Wednesday, becoming the first Senate candidate in more than 50 years to win a write-in campaign. The victory is a remarkable comeback for Murkowski, who lost to political newcomer Joe Miller in the GOP primary, and a humbling moment for Palin, the former Alaska governor, 2008 GOP vice presidential candidate and Murkowski nemesis whose support was not enough to get Miller through an election in her own backyard. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/17/joe-miller-concede-alaska-gop_n_785202.html

Joe Miller: A Study In Overconfidence. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/17/joe-miller-a-study-in-ove_n_785067.html

Corporate Campaign Financing

Efforts to influence the political agenda -- with direct contributions to candidates and indirect spending on their behalf -- took on huge proportions this year, campaign finance reports released this week show. Read more: Big spenders rise up to infuse elections, influence politics. http://www.freep.com/article/20101204/NEWS15/12040414/Big-spenders-rise-up-to-infuse-elections-influence-politics

Crossroads GPS, an affiliate of the conservative, Karl Rove-connected American Crossroads group, is spending more than $2 million on the three ad campaigns: $500,000 in Pennsylvania, $1 million in California and $520,000 in Kentucky, according to the group. The ads began airing last week. Crossroads GPS is organized as a 501(c)(4) under the federal tax code and thus, unlike its parent group, isn’t required to disclose its donors — though it says on its website there are "no limits" to the amount of money it will accept from U.S. corporations (or unions, for that matter). Officially, the full name of the group is Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies, and it says "our goal is to provide a clear road map for concerned Americans." But we find this GPS is giving bad directions. http://www.factcheck.org/2010/08/misdirection-from-crossroads-gps/

Tax-exempt groups could be abusing status, expert says. http://www.freep.com/article/20100822/NEWS15/8220455/Tax-exempt-groups-could-be-abusing-status-expert-says#ixzz0xM0CCgFU

Several groups whose funding isn't regulated by the state were involved in attacking or supporting candidates during the gubernatorial primary. The Michigan Campaign Finance Network tracked TV spending by seven groups. The Free Press used public records to find two other groups producing issue ads. Read more: Sorting out who produced campaign ads | freep.com | Detroit Free Press http://www.freep.com/article/20100822/NEWS15/8220454/1322/Sorting-out-who-produced-campaign-ads#ixzz0xLzLBNZ5

The Supreme Court's decision this year in Citizens United, which lifted campaign spending restrictions for companies and interest groups, has indirectly thrust the Internal Revenue Service into the more prominent role of overseeing those expenditures. The ruling largely tied the hands of the Federal Election Commission to force companies or groups that are funding political or advocacy advertisements to disclose their donors. And although Democrats in Congress had pushed legislation that would have mandated more disclosure, the measure failed in the Senate this summer. Long-standing IRS regulations require some groups to reveal their donors, and that is why the agency suddenly finds itself with what some might see as a more crucial watchdog role, stepping in to monitor disclosure in the absence of the FEC. But the IRS rules also have long-standing loopholes and, with limited resources and enforcement tools, the nation's tax collector is not set up to be a campaign regulator. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/21/AR2010082102290.html

Target Political Giving 'A Debacle' Says Target Institutional Investor. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/20/target-political-giving-a_n_688808.html

Target feels backlash from shareholders. Institutions with stakes in the retail giant are demanding that the company revamp its donation process after a $150,000 contribution backed an anti-gay-rights candidate. Jennifer Hanson. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-target-shareholders-20100820,0,5211901.story

News

Do Only Conservative Victories Count? http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/do_only_conservative_victories_count_20101111/

Miller: Ballot fight unlikely if math doesn't work. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20101114/ap_on_el_se/us_alaska_senate

McConnell doubled down on his promise to make Obama a one-term president. As he told the Heritage crowd in his prepared remarks, Over the past week, some have said it was indelicate of me to suggest that our top political priority over the next two years should be to deny President Obama a second term in office. But the fact is, if our primary legislative goals are to repeal and replace the health spending bill; to end the bailouts; cut spending; and shrink the size and scope of government, the only way to do all these things it is to put someone in the White House who won't veto any of these things. We can hope the President will start listening to the electorate after Tuesday's election. But we can't plan on it. http://motherjones.com/mojo/2010/11/mcconnell-obama-republican-repeal

Republicans could have captured the Senate were it not for Tea Party candidates in swing states. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-11-04/senate-races-did-tea-party-spoil-for-republicans/

What was Jon Stewart's rally in Washington all about? http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-11656214

But perhaps before we vote and throw out all those "tax and spend" liberals, we might want to look at some real facts. According to the government statistics, under Reagan/George H.W. Bush, the percentage of national debt to GDP was increased by 35.6 percent. Under the administration of Bill Clinton the ratio of national debt to GDP decreased by 9.7 percent. And under George W. Bush the ratio of national debt to GDP increased to 27.1 percent. Under George W. Bush the deficit rose by $4 trillion due to the tax cuts and two wars. Will fiscal sanity be restored if the GOP regains power? Not if you believe the statistics. Before people vote, I hope they consider: Do we really want to go back to the Bush years? http://www.sddt.com/Commentary/article.cfm?Commentary_ID=169&SourceCode=20101029tza

Veteran state Sen. Bill Raggio, one of Nevada's most influential Republicans over the last four decades, says he's reluctantly endorsing Democratic U.S. Sen. Harry Reid's re-election campaign. Raggio issued a statement Thursday sharply criticizing GOP candidate Sharron Angle, branding her as a "totally ineffective" four-term state lawmaker. Raggio also cited what he called Angle's inability and unwillingness to work with others even within her own party, and her extreme positions on Social Security and other issues. Raggio also criticized Angle for badmouthing GOP leaders in a recent secretly taped conversation. The Angle campaign did not immediately respond to Raggio's comments. Raggio defeated Angle two years ago in a bitter GOP primary. http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/sns-ap-us-nevada-senate-reid-endorsement,0,1872342.story

I love my country, it's republicans like Dan Quayle that I fear. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/24/ben-quayle-calls-on-dad-d_n_692368.html

Tea Baggers

News

Please don't speak in my name. The Tea Party is not America. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-04-08/tea-party-backlash-against-gop-brewing-in-budget-battle/

To avoid complete philosophical incoherence in tea party libertarian orthodoxy, something has to give: either the reverence accorded individual freedom for American citizens or the freedom for corporations to insist upon employment rules designed solely to pad the bottom line of corporate balance sheets. On the one hand, the tea party position is that the Founding Fathers intended to establish a country where people are free to engage in any harmful, self-destructive behavior they damn well please. Such freedom is quintessentially libertarian: Jane Q. Citizen has her liberty and freedom from being told by the nanny state what to do, even if doing or not doing it makes one ill, disabled or likelier to die at an earlier age. Economic freedom to contract with any employer and the employer’s economic freedom to dictate the terms of the contract it is willing to enter into with the employee are bedrock principles endorsed by the libertarian-leaning tea party members. Their narrative is that big government has enacted too many laws and business regulations over the past 70 years that strangle free enterprise. Corporate innovation and small business competitiveness are stymied, they argue, by workplace regulations that mandate paying a minimum wage, prescribe the length of the workday and require safety regulations to prevent employee injuries. That kind of government intervention in the economy hurts the free market drive for profits that, they say, will improve the lives of consumers and workers alike. Then it must logically follow that libertarian/tea party members and their fellow travelers within the Republican Party should see nothing wrong with a corporation’s economic decision to not hire smokers, obese persons (as subjectively defined by the hiring employer) or applicants with “pre-existing” genetic proclivities (easily determined through medical history and DNA testing) that make them likely targets for cancers, diabetes or heart disease. http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/who_is_your_nanny_20110219/

Who's Sending Dems Racist Death Threats? http://motherjones.com/mojo/2011/02/whos-sending-dems-racist-death-threats

Two years ago, Tea Party Patriots got its start as a scrappy, ground-up conservative organization. Its rowdy activists demanded more transparency and less business-as-usual in the nation's capital, and they worked hard to elect candidates who they believed wouldn't succumb to the ways of Washington. But it didn't take long for the grassroots tea party organization to embrace the DC establishment—and some of its more questionable practices. Lately, Tea Party Patriots (TPP) has started to resemble the Beltway lobbying operations its members have denounced. The group's leaders have cozied up to political insiders implicated in the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal and have paid themselves significant salaries. TPP accepted the use of a private jet and a large donation of anonymous cash right before a key election, and its top officials have refused to discuss how the money was spent. And recently, the group has hired several big-time fundraising and public relations firms that work for the who's who of the Republican political class, including some of the GOP's most secretive campaign operations. As TPP's leaders entrench themselves in Washington, local activists the group represents have accused them of exploiting the grassroots for their own fame and fortune while failing to deliver any meaningful political results. "Tea Party Patriots? I can't attribute one victory to them at all," says Laura Boatright, a former TPP regional coordinator in Southern California who has become an outspoken critic. "Where's the success with what they've done with all this money? My view is that it's just a career plan" for its national leaders—namely Jenny Beth Martin, who in 2010 was named by Time as one of the 100 most influential people in the world, and Mark Meckler, now a regular commentator on Fox News. (Meckler and Martin did not respond to a request to comment for this story.) http://motherjones.com/politics/2011/02/tea-party-patriots-investigated

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is apparently trying to burnish his credentials in the race for the GOP presidential nomination by encouraging states to default on their debts. Gingrich is the leading cheerleader for the idea of letting states declare bankruptcy to evade problems with unfunded public employee pensions and other benefits for future retirees. Those problems are real, but letting judges pick winners and losers among a state's creditors wouldn't solve them. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/editorials/la-ed-bankruptcy-20110125,0,5414335.story

Tea Party Group Blames 'Leftist' for Giffords Shooting. TPN founder Judson Phillips, in an article linked off the e-mail "The shooting of Gabrielle Giffords and the left's attack on the Tea Party movement," described the shooter as "a leftist lunatic" and Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik as a "leftist sheriff" who "was one of the first to start in on the liberal attack." Phillips urged tea party supporters to blame liberals for the attack on centrist Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona, who was shot through the head and is now fighting for her life, as a means of defending the tea party movement's recent electoral gains. "The hard left is going to try and silence the Tea Party movement by blaming us for this," he wrote. Clinton used the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing to "blame conservative talk radio, especially Rush Limbaugh" and "The tactic worked then, backing conservatives off and possibly helping to ensure a second Clinton term." "The left is coming and will hit us hard on this. We need to push back harder with the simple truth. The shooter was a liberal lunatic. Emphasis on both words," he wrote. http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2011/01/tea-party-group-blames-leftist-for-giffords-shooting/69153/

Some believe the issue of whether groups supporting gay marriage should be represented at CPAC has been stoked by frequent, outraged stories on WorldNetDaily, a conservative website run by Joseph Farah that has been a prime force in the movement that claims President Obama was born abroad. Conservative Internet entrepreneur Andrew Breitbart, who has clashed with Farah over the "birther" movement, defended the inclusion of gay conservatives at CPAC. "The point is to welcome people into the 'big tent,' " Breitbart said Friday. Last week, Breitbart tweeted that he planned to throw a party for gay conservatives at CPAC. "I'm working on getting a venue," he said. "The first annual Roy Cohn CPAC Breitbart Homocon Welcoming 80's Extravaganza. I'm thinking of DJ-ing." http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-cpac-20110108,0,4410541.story

Prominent Republican Tea Party leader entrepreneur Andrew Breitbart

Right Wing Republican Sex Worker James O’Keefe http://www.sdcitybeat.com/sandiego/article-8518-candid-camera.html

Newt Gingrich, who is currently mulling a presidential bid in 2012, said at a political event in South Carolina on Thursday that most of America's problems can be blamed on the "leftist news media," Hollywood, tenured academics, overpaid federal workers, and unemployed people. "I'm opposed to giving people money for doing nothing," he told the crowd of 250 cheering GOP activists in a state with a 10.6 percent unemployment rate. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/20/newt-gingrich-blames-nati_n_799391.html

As the debate over the health-care public option heated up, a Fox News executive told staffers to change the way they talked about it. Howard Kurtz on the memo that echoed a GOP talking point. As the health-care debate was heating up in the summer of 2009, Republican pollster Frank Luntz offered Sean Hannity some advice. Luntz, who counseled the GOP on how to sell the 1994 Contract With America, told the Fox News host to stop using President Obama’s preferred term for a key provision. "If you call it a public option, the American people are split,” he explained. “If you call it the government option, the public is overwhelmingly against it.” http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-12-09/how-fox-news-spun-the-health-care-debate/

Republicans have a near monopoly on complaints about government spending. Dozens of new Tea Party candidates were elected to Congress on a promise to clean house. But data going back two decades—to stick to Simpson's crude metaphor—show the milk is mostly coming from Democratic states, and the sucking is being done by Republican states. The "red" states up in arms about government spending receive the largest share of it. This is not a new finding, but research by economist Gary Richardson at the University of California-Irvine backs it up. Richardson provides insight into how the paradox came about and what it means for the future. It isn't surprising that the more Republican a state leans, the more likely it is to be furious about government spending. But what is surprising is that states with the highest anti-spending sentiment appear to be the largest beneficiaries of government spending. Not only do red states swallow the lion's share of government spending, but Richardson found a linear relationship between the extent of GOP support in a state—and, by implication, the fervor of its anti-government sentiment—and the amount of federal largesse the state receives. http://www.slate.com/id/2276583/

Choosing mediocrity is far from exceptional. Asia’s ingenuity will leave U.S. behind if we stay on current. In the recent election, the word took on a different meaning, an uglier version that does not — factually or figuratively — speak well of America. One of the basic tenets of the Tea Party movement, besides the desire of frustrated people for limited government, limited tax burdens and unlimited success in governance, was the almost religious adherence to the belief in American exceptionalism. That word, however, did not translate in the manner of Tocqueville. Instead it came across as the basis for a superiority complex we did not deserve and, certainly, no longer earned — if, indeed, we would ever want to earn such a complex. http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2010/nov/21/choosing-mediocrity-far-exceptional/

Tea party backers fashion themselves as "we the people," but polls show the Republican Party's most conservative and energized voters are hardly your average crowd. According to an Associated Press-GfK Poll this month, 84 percent who call themselves tea party supporters don't like how President Barack Obama is handling his job – a view shared by just 35 percent of all other adults. Tea partiers are about four times likelier than others to back repealing Obama's health care overhaul and twice as likely to favor renewing tax cuts for the highest-earning Americans. Exit polls of voters in this month's congressional elections reveal similar gulfs. Most tea party supporters – 86 percent – want less government intrusion on people and businesses, but only 35 percent of other voters said so. Tea party backers were about five times likelier to blame Obama for the country's economic ills, three times likelier to say Obama's policies will be harmful and twice as apt to see the country on the wrong track. These aren't subtle shadings between tea party backers and the majority of Americans, who don't support the movement; they're Grand Canyon-size chasms. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/23/tea-party-poll-elections-2012_n_787887.html

The Tea Partiers talked of changing the system, but when they got to the House Republican caucus last week, the revolution was over on day one. John Batchelor on a coup that's all talk. The Tea Party class of 2010 scurried into the House Republican caucus like rosy-cheeked kindergartners last week and demanded total attention and outsized authority from the Speaker-in-waiting of the House John Boehner and his leadership team. It is a measure of the worst that is yet to come that Boehner, who thinks of himself as Dean Martin, not only granted the Tea Party kids the run of the House but also lavished affection on this squeaking mob of 80-plus as if it was taking over the casino and changing the rules. "Boehner and his leadership team showed they are afraid of them," remarked a Republican observer. "Boehner knows there is no leadership to discipline them." http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-11-20/the-tea-partys-whiny-takeover/

Joe Miller's Employment Record: Lying, and then Lying about Lying. http://motherjones.com/mojo/2010/10/joe-miller-employment-record-alaska

In the wake of their big election "victory," the Tea Party Patriots (TPP) hastily organized an orientation session for newly elected members of Congress in DC. The national tea party umbrella group rented space at the swank Ronald Reagan building, arranged for more than 100 of its local coordinators to be flown in for the event, and even pulled Reagan-era attorney general Ed Meese out of the mothballs and signed him on as a keynote speaker. After shelling out more than $100,000, the group discovered that it wasn't the only one interested in getting to those newly elected freshmen. The Claremont Institute, a conservative think tank, had also organized a similar event. Worse still, it was scheduled for the same day and time as the tea party orientation. The tea partiers responded by lobbying the newly elected lawmakers to come to their event instead of the one organized by the Claremont Institute. TPP sent out an indignant email blast suggesting that Claremont was simply hosting a GOP event in disguise, and that the competing "orientation" was an attempt by lobbyists to get first crack at the freshman class. "DC insiders, the RNC, and lobbyists are already trying to push the Tea Party aside and co-opt the incoming Congressmen," the group wrote. TPP even asked its members to call the soon-to-be members of Congress and lobby them personally to come to the tea party event. This turned out to be a pretty bad idea. The email TPP circulated contained the personal cell phone numbers of some of the freshmen, who for a 24-hour stretch, received non-stop calls from tea partiers. Those calls did not, of course, go over well with their intended targets. On Friday, TPP sent out another email to activists urging them to stop calling the freshman, writing: We listed the contact information we had for these freshmen and we now know that some of it was personal cell phone numbers or fax numbers. This list was the best information we had at the time. We also understand that sometimes members of Congress find it annoying to receive numerous calls from voters. But we encourage them to remember it is part of the job and they asked to be hired. This will not be the last time. http://motherjones.com/mojo/2010/11/tea-party-Congress-freshmen-calls

"We want President Obama to be a one-term president." They have a political and partisan agenda, which they've had from day one. http://thepage.time.com/2010/10/31/transcript-meet-the-press-october-31-2010/

Read more: http://thepage.time.com/2010/10/31/transcript-meet-the-press-october-31-2010/#ixzz14GxSe4T9

Tea Party not so mad. http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2010/10/tea_party_not_so_mad.html

2010: The year of politicking insanely. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/14/AR2010101405235.html

BUSH: "My biggest regret is not stealing Social Security." http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-pelosi-social-security-20101023,0,3235554.story

Tea Baggers hate Puppies. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/unleashed/2010/10/barking-mad-over-puppy-mill-humane-measure-in-missouri.html

Tea Party coloring book. http://www.freep.com/article/20101003/BLOG24/101003001/Tea-Party-coloring-book

'Tea Party Coloring Book' is kiddie propaganda art. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/culturemonster/2010/09/tea-party-coloring-book-is-kiddie-propaganda.html

"The entirety of this Promise is laughable," Erickson wrote. "Why? It is an illusion that fixates on stuff the GOP already should be doing while not daring to touch on stuff that will have any meaningful long-term effects on the size and scope of the federal government." Another featured RedState blogger labeled it the "Pledge to Nowhere." http://www.thedailybeast.com/beltway-beast/pledge-to-america-sparks-tea-party-backlash/

But in becoming one of the movement’s most successful players by helping Tea Party favorites oust incumbents or trounce rivals in four states, Mr. Russo is also fast becoming among the most divisive. Unlike many of the newly energized outsiders who have embraced Tea Party ideals, Mr. Russo, 63, is a longtime Republican operative who got his start as an aide to Ronald Reagan and later raised money and managed media strategy for a string of other politicians, including former Gov. George E. Pataki of New York. His history and spending practices have prompted some former employees and other Tea Party activists to question whether he is committed to, or merely exploiting, their cause. Mr. Russo’s group, based in California, is now the single biggest independent supporter of Tea Party candidates, raising more than $5.2 million in donations since January 2009, according to federal records. But at least $3 million of that total has since been paid to Mr. Russo’s political consulting firm or to one controlled by his wife, according to federal records. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/19/us/politics/19russo.html?_r=1&hp

Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin draw the faithful in Anchorage. On the Sept. 11 anniversary, the conservative duo urges followers to take the nation back from an over-reaching government. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-palin-beck-20100913,0,4515150.story

Sharron Angle: Fox News is part of my new $1 million fundraising "push" http://mediamatters.org/blog/201009100032

America's Idiots: http://www.thedailybeast.com/galleries/2065/1/

Tea Party "Liberty XPO" Fail. http://motherjones.com/mojo/2010/09/tea-party-liberty-xpo-fail

What book would Jesus burn? http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/09/10/this-is-how-the-media-wor_n_712229.html

David Koch is fuming about a New Yorker article accusing him of using his fortune to secretly fund an anti-Obama insurgency. In an exclusive interview, he tells Elaine Lafferty what they got wrong, why he's so misunderstood, and denies funding the Tea Party. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-09-10/billionaire-david-koch-fires-back-at-the-new-yorker/

Glenn Beck Destroying Honor 8/28

The we to which Glenn Beck belongs is the we that said no, the we that cried "socialism!" "communism!" "tyranny!" whenever black people and their allies cried, freedom. The fatuous and dishonorable attempt to posit conservatives as the prime engine of civil rights depends for success on the ignorance of the American people. Sadly, as anyone who has ever watched a Jay Walking segment on "The Tonight Show" can attest, the American people have ignorance in plenitude. This, then, is to serve notice as Beck and his tea party faithful gather in Lincoln's shadow to claim the mantle of King: Some of us are not ignorant. Some of us remember. Some of us know very well who "we" is. And, who "we" is not. http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2010/08/27/99778/commentary-glenn-beck.html#ixzz0y2UfsfOG

The Billionaires Bankrolling the Tea Party. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/29/opinion/29rich.html

GOP splits with Tea Baggers. http://www.sandiego6.com/content/news/election/story/State-GOP-Declines-to-Support-Arizona-Immigration/w-fWT70QsUGMiDsFP_Zgvw.cspx?rss=800

California Republican Party: Deeply Divided on many issues: http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2010/aug/22/california-republican-party-united-we-stand/

The Birther Conspiracy Lives!!! http://politicsoffootball.wordpress.com/2010/08/10/images-from-the-doctors-tea-party/

The Republican Party’s candidate for governor of Colorado believes that bicycle paths are “part of a greater strategy to rein in American cities under a United Nations treaty.” The party’s Senate candidate in Nevada wants to privatize Medicare and Social Security—and has called for the United States to withdraw from the U.N., though not because of the bicycle conspiracy. And the GOP’s Senate candidate in Connecticut once climbed into a professional wrestling ring and kicked a man in the crotch. I could go on, but you get the point. Democrats may be facing a tough fight this fall, but Republicans are giving them plenty of material to work with. The big political story of the year may turn out to be the consequences of the GOP’s foray into extremism and wackiness. It could be that the party acculturates its not-ready-for-prime-time candidates, harnesses the energy of the tea party movement, and sweeps to a grand old victory. There is also the distinct possibility that the acute philosophical split within the party—basically, a clash between bedrock conservatism and utter nonsense—will hand victories to Democrats that they didn’t anticipate and frankly might not deserve. Anyone who doubts this assessment should reflect on the fact that major figures in the Republican Party are wasting valuable time and energy debating whether the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, adopted in 1868, should be repealed. http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/you_cant_make_up_republican_candidates_like_these_20100812/

The Chamber of Commerce plans to spend at least $75 million on elections in 2010, but returns on its early investments this season have been disappointing. Jane Norton, who lost to a Tea Party backed candidate (Ken Buck) in Colorado Tuesday night, is just one in a string of Chamber-backed candidates to go down in defeat. The Chamber's biggest win of 2010 remains one of its only GOP success stories, when Scott Brown knocked off Martha Coakley to break the Democrats' filibuster-proof majority. Since then, however, Chamber candidates have lost in Maine, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Utah and Kentucky. The losing streak may say less about the Chamber's political acumen than it does about the anger voters have at corporate influence on the political process. A new poll funded by MoveOn.org and performed by SurveyUSA found that opposition to unchecked corporate involvement in the election process cuts across party lines. Seventy-six percent of Republicans in the survey said that it is very important (44%) or somewhat important (28%) for a candidate to commit to reducing the influence corporations have over elections and 64 percent said they'd be more likely to vote for a candidate who backed a constitutional amendment overturning Citizens United, the 5-4 Supreme Court decision that upended a century of campaign law to allow unlimited corporate involvement. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/11/tea-party-crushing-chambe_n_678895.html

Right Wing Dirty Tricks

"The Rand Paul Stomp," Thug Tim Profitt. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/18/rand-paul-stomper-not-guilty_n_785527.html

James O'Keefe: dude! yur a doofus!

A conservative activist known for making undercover videos plotted to embarrass a CNN correspondent by recording a meeting on hidden cameras aboard a floating "palace of pleasure" and making sexually suggestive comments, e-mails and a planning document show. James O'Keefe, best known for hitting the community organizing group ACORN with an undercover video sting, hoped to get CNN Investigative Correspondent Abbie Boudreau onto a boat filled with sexually explicit props and then record the session, those documents show. http://www.cnn.com/2010/US/09/29/okeefe.cnn.prank/index.html?hpt=C2

Republican 'Pledge To America' Centers On Destroying Middle America, Tax cuts for the Wealthy. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/09/22/republican-pledge-to-america-tax-spending-cuts_n_735876.html

Five days after a similar gathering of the Congressional Cigar Association, Bilbray introduced HR 5615. The bill was introduced to kill taxes on the sale of medical devices, part of the billions of dollars needed to fund President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. The bill would replace the missing billions of dollars with leftover stimulus money.

With help from media partners the Watchdog Institute at San Diego State University and the San Diego U-T, the I-Team followed up on the Huffington Post story and learned lobbyist Jeff Choudhry was a part of the cigar meetings. According to research done by the Watchdog Institute, Choudhry worked for a company representing a large medical device manufacturer and was also a board member of the Cigar Association. Bilbray's proposed legislation would benefit many medical device manufacturers and their employees, including Choudhry's company's client. That meeting took place last June at the 101 Constitution Ave. address, the I-Team learned. Two other lobbyists in the Cigar Association work for pharmaceutical/health product companies, and the website OpenSecrets.org shows the Bilbray has received $47,300 from that industry, his fourth-largest contributor to his current re-election campaign. Bilbray would not comment, in part, because he was occupied with family issues, he said. However, sources close to Bilbray said he and his staff have done nothing wrong, saying there was no wheeling and dealing going on at the Congressional Cigar Association meetings. The sources also pointed out that lobbyists and congressional staffers "run into each other all over Washington" as a matter of course. As to the legislation Bilbray proposed, sources said the timing was coincidental and it takes months to craft legislation, not days. http://www.10news.com/news/24917404/detail.html

Mr. Pearcy and other drifters and homeless people were recruited onto the Green Party ballot by a Republican political operative who freely admits that their candidacies may siphon some support from the Democrats. Arizona’s Democratic Party has filed a formal complaint with local, state and federal prosecutors in an effort to have the candidates removed from the ballot, and the Green Party has urged its supporters to steer clear of the rogue candidates. “These are people who are not serious and who were recruited as part of a cynical manipulation of the process,” said Paul Eckstein, a lawyer representing the Democrats. “They don’t know Green from red.” But Steve May, the Republican operative who signed up some of the candidates along Mill Avenue, a bohemian commercial strip next to Arizona State University, insists that a real political movement has been stirred up that has nothing to do with subterfuge. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/07/us/politics/07candidates.html

Palin - Hate 2012

Links

Bushisms, which I collected for many years, often hinged on a single grammatical or factual error. Palinisms, by contrast, consist of a unitary stream of patriotic, populist blather. It's like Fox News without the punctuation. It is so devoid of content that it hardly deserves the adjective "truthy." Let's call it "roguey." Palinisms do not have to contain actual evidence of rogue thinking, though; they just have to capture the rogue spirit. It's "Yes, we can, in spite of Them." http://www.slate.com/id/2262822?wpisrc=obinsite

Sarah Palin is not the solution, Sarah Palin is the problem.

a bad role model

reprehensible

hows that bloody thing working for ya?

Palin perpetuating her own victimhood and alleged bloodthirstiness of her opponents.

Sarah Palin cry baby

phony

Sarah Palin bully

reprehensible

http://www.themudflats.net/

The Immoral Minority. Morality is not determined by the church you attend nor the faith you embrace. It is determined by the quality of your character and the positive impact you have on those you meet along your journey. http://theimmoralminority.blogspot.com/

http://shannynmoore.wordpress.com/

http://palingates.blogspot.com/

Gabrielle Gifford Assassination

In our view, it seems more than reasonable to scrutinize Palin and others who talked in terms of armed insurrection during recent campaigns. Though, as a profile of the shooter emerged, it became much more likely that Loughner was responding to a disjointed conversation in his own head rather than the disjointed conversation on Fox News. Still, count us among those who believe it’s only a matter of time before violence-laden political blather claims lives. http://www.sdcitybeat.com/sandiego/article-8608-loughners-lessons.html

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R) to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg this week, "See you at Safeway!" http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/03/jan-brewer-michael-bloomberg-gun-sting_n_818375.html

Sen. Leland Yee received some sort of death threat today - a faxed death threat, no less - after performance artist Rush Limbaugh's humor-free tirade about the Chinese language. "The threats to the San Francisco Democrat came more than a week after Yee asked Limbaugh for an apology for 'mocking the Chinese language' and the country’s president on his popular conservative talk radio program," reports The Examiner. The letter, presumably sent by a right-leaning zealot, can be viewed below. http://sfist.com/2011/01/26/leland_yee_gets_racist_death_threat.php

A man accused in the deadly Tucson shooting rampage that killed six people and wounded 13 others including Arizona congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords researched lethal injections, solitary confinement and political assassinations in the days before the attack, a newspaper reported Wednesday. A source close to the investigation into 22-year-old Jared Loughner told The Washington Post that a review of his computers turned up the Internet searches. Officials with the FBI and Justice Department contacted by The Associated Press declined to comment Wednesday on the Post's story or verify any part of it. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/wire/sns-ap-us-congresswoman-shot-loughner,0,288912.story

an anonymous person posted a death threat targeting McLeod in the "Rants & Raves" section of the Anchorage Craigslist. The posting, which echoed an email sent to the Anchorage Daily News, read in full: I find it very offensive that Andre Mclead [sic] is asking the state for every e-mail written or received in ANY account maintained by Palin and her husband. Where does this bitch get off thinking the public should shell out for her revenge for the Palin family. I've heard enough from this, and I would like to use stronger words to express my feeling for Andre. Well…I think Andre has used up to [sic] much oxygen. So I have my scope cross hair on her head! She better watch out, the request may have been her last! I know you won't publish this. ADN relish in bashing the Palin's too! Let's clean up the political garbage. http://motherjones.com/politics/2011/01/death-threat-palin-critic

Palin added, "I receive a lot of death threats. My children do." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/17/sarah-palin-crosshairs-us_n_810118.html

Wow! Sarah Palin is soooo smart. She's a religious scholar! http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/17/AR2011011703262.html

"Guns don't kill people, words kill people." http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2011/01/12/fioreshooting.DTL

Suspected Tucson shooter 'slowly spiraled into madness'. Interviews with friends, law enforcement reports and Jared Lee Loughner's own writings depict a troubled young man who seemed in need of mental health intervention. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-jared-loughner-20110116,0,2115673.story

Remember that “Second Amendment remedies” were casually referenced by Sharron Angle against Harry Reid during the 2010 campaign in the neighboring state of Nevada. In Virginia, GOP state senate candidate Catherine Crabill said “We have the chance to fight this battle at the ballot box before we have to resort to the bullet box.” An Idaho Republican gubernatorial candidate Rex Rammel joked with a town hall crowd about buying a hunting license to hunt the president, saying “The Obama tags? We’d buy some of those.” And Democrats were not immune—ex-Rep. Paul Kanjorski said that Floridians should put Governor-elect Rick Scott “against the wall and shoot him." We have seen high-profile armed protests. In Arizona, a member of the “4409” group brought an AR-15 Rifle to protest outside an Obama rally days after hearing local Pastor Steven L. Anderson give a Sunday sermon titled ‘Why I Hate Barack Obama’. In New England, a man named William Kostric protested outside an Obama town hall armed with a 9mm pistol and holding a sign saying "It is time to water the tree of liberty" – a reference to a Thomas Jefferson quote about “the blood of tyrants” which was emblazoned on Timothy McVeigh’s t-shirt the day he blew up the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City. Conservatives are rightly quick to invoke First and Second Amendment rights in defense, but ask yourself what their response would have been if there were armed left-wing protests outside speeches by President Bush. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-01-15/jared-loughner-and-the-rise-of-the-political-fright-wing/

largeimage.3ff1d2557913136ae8a15b8ec35909f1.gif
Palin's America

On Friday, just before the massacre at a meet-and-greet with constituents in Tucson, Ariz., Giffords had written to her friend, Kentucky Republican Trey Grayson, congratulating him on his new post and saying they should work together to narrow the nation’s deep, often vitriolic political divide. “After you get settled, I would love to talk about what we can do to promote centrism and moderation,” Giffords e-mailed Grayson, who was defeated by Rand Paul last year in Kentucky’s GOP Senate primary. “I am one of only 12 Dems left in a GOP district (the only woman) and think that we need to figure out how to tone our rhetoric and partisanship down.” http://news.bostonherald.com/news/regional/view/20110111rep_asked_harvard_chief_to_help_calm_fiery_politics_alleged_ariz_gunman_arraigned/

"As I look out the window, I see a very beautiful planet that seems very inviting and peaceful," said Cmdr Kelly. "Unfortunately, it is not. "These days, we are constantly reminded of the unspeakable acts of violence and damage we can inflict upon one another, not just with our actions but also with our irresponsible words." "We are better than this. We must do better," he said. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-12157346

In our work for peace, we have seen how each act of violence hurts not only the immediate victims, but tears at the fabric of entire communities. In the wake of such a senseless violation, everyone in Tucson will struggle to feel secure, to regain trust for each other, and to work together to move forward. Our hearts go out to all in Tucson today. Today’s strident political atmosphere escalates tension and helps to set the stage for incidents like this one. Our world is increasingly swept up in a tide of intolerance. We are all too accepting when political and spiritual leaders use rhetoric that demonizes those with different beliefs; when those who should call us to higher purpose, instead, contribute to an atmosphere that provokes the most vulnerable, disturbed among us to acts of vandalism, violence, and assassination. We all must take responsibility for correcting a political climate that has become so polarized and vitriolic. It is not an accident that this tragic shooting took place in Arizona, where punitive laws and anti-immigrant scapegoating have only resulted in misunderstanding and divisiveness in our borderlands. These laws have brought us no closer to creating humane, workable policies that respect the rights and needs of those living on either side of the border. This is one of many examples that show how our nation’s political conversation is counterproductive to developing solutions that address our society’s fundamental needs. What would help us move forward? The American Friends Service Committee urges our elected officials, spiritual leaders and community leaders to commit now to act with civility and common purpose to heal our society. Real healing goes beyond civil words and tamped-down rhetoric and looks to the root causes of violence in our society, the conditions of inequality and injustice. A political culture devoted to honestly and reasonably addressing those conditions would be a healthier one for all of us. We call on national, state, and local leaders to respond with compassion to the needs and aspirations of those who have been disenfranchised by the political system and excluded from the economic recovery. This is a time to fulfill the promise of “justice for all.” This is a time for leadership towards “a more perfect union.” http://support.afsc.org/site/MessageViewer?em_id=11221.0&dlv_id=14081

James Fallows of The Atlantic discusses political speeches and how they can affect the mood of the American public. In the aftermath of the shootings in Tucson, he says President Obama used his speech to try to bring the nation together. Meanwhile, he says, Sarah Palin's "blood libel" talk may signal the beginning of the end of her political career. http://www.npr.org/2011/01/15/132964309/Week-In-News-Political-Rhetoric

Cenk Uygur http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uVJdhXSxWQU

At Palingates, we always enjoy the free flow of opinions and thoughts. The number of comments during the last days here at Palingates, up to about 3000 per post or even more, shows that there is a great need for discussion. I get the feeling that more and more people realize that the USA is at crossroads. A noisy group of right-wingers still spew relentless hate, even after the sad events of the weekend, and it's worse: This group now seems to be more fired up and vocal than before. This is a group of people whose hate now seems to be "institutionalized." Sarah Palin's fans currently seem to be the "core" of this group. She became their symbol, and Palin's perpetual victimhood now appears to be their main unifying cause. http://palingates.blogspot.com/2011/01/usa-is-at-crossroads-how-can-divisions.html

Palin can be hateful and divisive without inspiring assassins -- pulling down her “Target List” off her website is an admission of just how vicious and vile her message is. http://zinasaunders.blogspot.com/2011/01/taking-aim-at-palins-target-list.html

Is Sarah Palin a Tea Terrorist? http://opinion.latimes.com/opinionla/2011/01/sarah-palin-blood-libel-remarks-tucson-arizona-.html

Seventeen years ago, Carolyn McCarthy’s husband and son were victims of a senseless shooting spree. Now in her eighth term in Congress, she tells Eleanor Clift about taking on the NRA in the wake of Jared Loughner. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-01-13/carolyn-mccarthy-on-her-proposed-ban-of-ammunition-clips/

Conservatives Go Off On Michelle Obama For... Preaching Tolerance? http://mediamatters.org/blog/201101140057

RUSHLIMBAUGH.jpg
A spokesperson for Premier Networks, the company that syndicates Limbaugh's show, told Politico that the billboard was taken down on Monday, two days after the shooting.

The sole black Republican Party district chairman in Arizona resigned from his post in the wake of Saturday's shooting, citing threats from the Tea Party faction and concerns for his family's safety, The Arizona Republic first reported. Republican District 20 Chairman Anthony Miller was not the only party official to resign following the shooting that killed six and wounded 14 others, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) and a federal judge. But Miller had been an especially dedicated campaigner for the GOP, and said he only stepped down in the face of "constant verbal attacks" and other forms of intimidation. "I wasn't going to resign but decided to quit after what happened Saturday," he said. "I love the Republican Party but I don't want to take a bullet for anyone." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/12/anthony-miller-resigns-giffords-threats_n_808116.html

“Unfortunately for Palin, Giffords herself was one of those who objected to the crosshairs map. ‘The way that she has it depicted has the crosshairs of a gunsight over our district,’ Giffords said last March. ‘When people do that, they've gotta realize there's consequences to that action.’ “In other words, Palin's phony framing of the issue—that by raising concerns about her word-choice and imagery, critics are trying to deprive Palin of her First Amendment freedoms, rather than simply asking her to be more mindful of the potential consequences of incendiary rhetoric—is one that Giffords herself rejects.” http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2011/01/sarah_palin_accuses_critics_of.html

Instead, Palin chose to throw kerosene on the embers of a smoldering national controversy. “Especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding,” Palin said in a video on her Facebook page, “journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn. That is reprehensible.” http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-01-12/sarah-palin-says-media-guilty-of-blood-libel-why-her-speech-was-wrong/

Sarah Palin released a web video today in which she reads a speech off a teleprompter about "freedom" and the recent mass shooting in Arizona. In this speech, she reads the phrase "Journalists and pundints [sic] should not manufacture a blood libel." ORLY? http://www.boingboing.net/2011/01/12/sarah-palin-and-bloo.html

Sarah Palin's charge of 'blood libel' spurs outcry from Jewish leaders. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-pn-palin-blood-libel-jews20120113,0,6792766.story

Palin uses bizarre religious grammar to urge attacks on Jews.

"Conservatives encouraged Jared Loughner to pull the trigger," he said. "Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Fox News, all spurred the psychopath to kill the six people. The merchants of hate who are peddling this stuff should be accountable." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/11/bill-oreilly-new-york-times-msnbc-arizona-shooting_n_807233.html

"What Mr. Loughner knows is that he has the full support of a major political party in this country. He's sitting there in jail. He knows what's going on, he knows that...the Democrat party is attempting to find anybody but him to blame. He knows if he plays his cards right, he's just a victim. He's the latest in a never-ending parade of victims brought about by the unfairness of America...this guy clearly understands he's getting all the attention and he understands he's got a political party doing everything it can, plus a local sheriff doing everything that they can to make sure he's not convicted of murder - but something lesser." How does Limbaugh know this guy so well? It's like he's inside the guys head and knows his every thought. It's like he panned all this out ahead of time.http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/11/rush-limbaugh-jared-loughner-full-support-democrat_n_807543.html

Like Gabrielle Giffords, Harry Mitchell and Ann Kirkpatrick were under siege during the health-care debate and appeared on Sarah Palin's "crosshairs" map. They tell Shushannah Walshe about death threats—and the need to cancel town-hall events. • Sarah Palin responded to critics today in an email to Glenn Beck, saying, “I hate violence. I hate war. Our children will not have peace if politicos just capitalize on this to succeed in portraying anyone as inciting terror and violence." For Arizona Congressman Harry Mitchell, the threats were verbal, conveyed in messages left at his office. "I cannot tell you how much I wish a panty bomber would come in and just fucking blow your place up," one hissed. Another promised to "disembowel him with a rusty pitchfork." For his colleague in the Arizona delegation, Ann Kirkpatrick, besides emails calling her a "whore," the threats got physical: A sewer cap was thrown through her office window. "Everybody in the back of their minds, everybody feared this, everybody put this into their calculations," says Kirkpatrick's former chief of staff, Michael Frias, "but nobody thought it would happen." http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-01-10/after-garbrielle-giffords-palins-other-arizona-targets-speak/

Palin responsible for creating an atmosphere of violence.

This is frightening. It started with bricks, now they're cleaning their rifles, ready to reload. The sight of blood seems to excite Sarah Palin, be it the blood of wolves, bears, moose or caribou. She has moved to human targets... Sarah Palin needs to stop, sit down and shut up. http://palingates.blogspot.com/2011/01/sarah-palin-doesnt-believe-in.html

SarahPAC staffer Rebecca Mansour, who has been tweeting in defense of her boss since the tragedy took place, is stating that the crosshairs were never intended to be gun sights. "We never ever, ever intended it to be gun sights," she said in an interview with talk radio host Tammy Bruce Saturday. "It was simply crosshairs like you'd see on maps." Bruce suggested that they could, in fact, be seen as "surveyor's symbols." Mansour added that "it never occurred to us that anybody would consider it violent" and called any attempts to politicize the Arizona tragedy "repulsive." The suggestion that the symbols were related to guns seemed to come, however, from Palin herself. On March 23, Palin tweeted to her supporters a note about the aforementioned Facebook message, writing, "Commonsense Conservatives & lovers of America: 'Don't Retreat, Instead - RELOAD!' Pls see my Facebook page." And as Politico's Jonathan Martin points out, in November Palin boasted about defeating 18 of the 20 members on her "bullseye" list. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/09/sarah-palin-rebecca-mansour-crosshairs-arizona_n_806375.html

In a typically heated congressional campaign in the recent, hyper-partisan midterm elections, Kelly blamed Giffords for supporting President Obama's healthcare overhaul and for her more liberal views on immigration reform, a sore subject in Arizona, a border state whose efforts to halt illegal immigration have drawn condemnation from liberals and the federal government. She was one of the lawmakers targeted for defeat by Sarah Palin, former GOP vice presidential candidate and former governor of Alaska, who may be considering a presidential run in 2012. In a campaign posting on Palin's Facebook page, Giffords' district and 19 other were depicted within a gun sight's cross hairs. Palin has expressed her condolences about the shootings. "The phrase 'Don't retreat; reload,' putting cross hairs on congressional districts as targets. These sorts of things, I think, invite the kind of toxic rhetoric that can lead unstable people to believe this is an acceptable response," Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), said on CNN's "State of the Union." http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-0110-gabrielle-giffords-20110110,0,6628193.story

Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.), who represents a district adjacent to Gabrielle Giffords's, said that Saturday's shooting is a consequence of the vitriolic rhetoric that has arisen over the past few years among extreme elements of the Tea Party. "The climate has gotten so toxic in our political discourse, setting up for this kind of reaction for too long. It's unfortunate to say that. I hate to say that," Grijalva said in an interview with The Huffington Post. "If you're an opponent, you're a deadly enemy," Grijalva said of the mindset among Arizona extremists. "Anybody who contributed to feeding this monster had better step back and realize they're threatening our form of government." Grijalva said that Tea Party leader Sarah Palin should reflect on the rhetoric that she has employed. "She -- as I mentioned, people contributing to this toxic climate -- Ms. Palin needs to look at her own behavior, and if she wants to help the public discourse, the best thing she could do is to keep quiet." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/08/grijalva-palin-needs-to-l_n_806283.html

Sarah Palin is targeting -- yes, with gun sights -- House Democrats facing tough reelection fights who voted for health care reform. Palin's Facebook page now carries a map featuring 20 gun sights, one for each of the Democrats targeted this year by her political action committee SarahPAC. Three of the gun sights, those where incumbent Democrats have already announced their retirement, are colored red. Likewise, Palin's rhetoric is decidedly militant. "We'll aim for these races and many others," she wrote on her Facebook page. "This is just the first salvo in a fight to elect people across the nation who will bring common sense to Washington. Please go to sarahpac.com and join me in the fight." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/03/24/sarah-palins-pac-puts-gun_n_511433.html

sarahpac_0.jpg

News

Sarah Palin's Views on Abstinence Lead to Second Grandchild. http://news.yahoo.com/sarah-palins-views-abstinence-lead-second-grandchild-215900097.html

Sarah Palin’s political mystery tour. The bus tour is the first major test of what Palin’s organization can do on its own. For every other major public event since Palin resigned as Alaska governor, other people have done the details. Her paid speeches were handled by the people who hired her. The logistics and press for her two book tours were taken care of by her publisher. Her speech on the Mall at Glenn Beck’s rally last summer, the two fundraisers she did for the Republican National Committee, her appearances at events for tea party groups in Boston and Las Vegas — all of it was coordinated by the groups that brought her in. Palin rehired advance aides Doug McMarlin and Jason Recher to plan the tour. They’re now part of an increasingly small Palin circle, made even smaller since spokeswoman Rebecca Mansour was sidelined from talking to the press after tweets criticizing Palin’s daughter were posted by the Daily Caller last week. SarahPAC Treasurer Tim Crawford, a longtime Washington hand and campaign finance expert with deep ties to the Republican establishment, has been filling Mansour’s role on press. Palin also has a policy researcher, and former Bob Dole aide Michael Glasner is serving as her chief of staff. Along with her husband, Todd, and Palin herself, that’s the extent of the inner circle. And convinced she’s her own best spokesman and advocate, Palin calls all the shots directly. Imagining how this would translate into a presidential campaign, with four events a day in four different locations — on top of all the fundraising calls, media interviews and strategy sessions — might seem like a stretch. http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0511/55878.html

Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0511/55878.html#ixzz1NmvpzYqQ

Bailey also helped smear a neighbor who complained about excessive tourist traffic around the governor’s mansion. After hearing of the gripe, Palin sent her daughter Piper out to sell lemonade and then derided her neighbor for protesting children at play. Soon, the neighbor was portrayed on conservative blogs as “sick,” “unhinged” and “drug-addicted.” “By the time we finished with our politics of destruction, he surely regretted ever mentioning the governor’s name,” Bailey writes. “He learned firsthand why so few people were willing to speak out against Sarah Palin.” http://motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2011/05/quotes-day-sarah-palin-edition

Emails released by court order from an Arizona college about Tucson shooting rampage suspect Jared Lee Loughner show campus police were so worried they asked federal authorities whether he had a gun. Scores of emails regarding the increasingly bizarre behavior of Loughner, accused of killing six people and wounding 13 others including Democratic Representative Gabrielle Giffords, have been released by Pima Community College, where he was a student. One showed campus police had contacted federal firearms officials to ask if Loughner owned a gun. Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives officials responded that they had no information about Loughner. In the months before the January 8 shooting spree, emails between the school and police indicate school officials had deep knowledge about his disturbing behavior before they finally expelled him in September 2010. The school alerted local police at least five times about Loughner's behavior last year, according to the emails released on Thursday, including one case in February 2010 where Loughner made comments in class that "were completely out of context, talking about abortion, wars, killing people, and 'strapping bombs to babies.'" http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20110520/us_nm/us_arizona_shooting_loughner

Fox News still dominates the cable news ratings, but chairman Roger Ailes wants something more: to help elect the next president. That's the takeaway from Gabriel Sherman's New York magazine cover story hitting newsstands Monday. Sherman, who's currently writing a book on Fox News for Random House, looks at how Ailes -- who built up a stable of possible presidential contenders after the 2008 election, including Sarah Palin -- isn't so pleased with their chances at beating President Barack Obama in 2012. Ailes doesn't speak on the record in the article, but several Republicans close to the Fox News chief describe his concerns going into an election year. "He thinks things are going in a bad direction," another Republican close to Ailes told [Sherman]. "Roger is worried about the future of the country. He thinks the election of Obama is a disaster. He thinks Palin is an idiot. He thinks she's stupid. He helped boost her up. People like Sarah Palin haven't elevated the conservative movement." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/05/22/roger-ailes-palin-stupid-fox-news-new-york_n_865117.html

The Complete Palinisms. http://www.slate.com/id/2253337/

Sarah Palin's Greatest Accomplishment. Josh Green thinks it was the tax on oil companies she signed into law - the Alaska’s Clear and Equitable Share (ACES): It's no exaggeration to say that ACES has made the state one of the fiscally strongest in the union. Flush with cash, Alaska produced large capital budgets that blunted the effects of the recession. Moody's just upped the state's bond rating to AAA for the first time. While other states reel under staggering deficits, budget cuts, and protests, Alaska has built up a $12 billion surplus, most of it attributable to Palin's tax. Galvin estimates that it has raised $8 billion more than Murkowski's tax would have. But given the corruption that plagued the PPT, a better benchmark might be the tax it supplanted--the one put on the books after the Exxon Valdez spill. By that measure, Palin's major achievement has probably meant the difference between a $12 billion surplus and a deficit. She should run on raising taxes in a socialist state. That should bring the Tea Party out in force. http://andrewsullivan.thedailybeast.com/2011/05/sarah-palins-greatest-accomplishment.html

News archived May 10, 2011

The Trig Palin Flame War. After a liberal blogger mocked Sarah Palin’s “retarded” son, enraged supporters attacked, bullying advertisers with surprising success. Brian Ries talks to both sides of the public spat. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-04-22/trig-palin-wonkette-post-how-it-started-a-flame-war/

Sarah Palin trashes National Endowment for the Arts. Television commentator and half-term Alaska governor Sarah Palin trashed the National Endowment for the Arts recently, describing the agency as "frivolous" in a Thursday interview on a Fox News talk show. "NPR, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, all those kind of frivolous things that government shouldn't be in the business of funding with tax dollars -- those should all be on the chopping block as we talk about the $14-trillion debt that we're going to hand to our kids and our grandkids," Palin told right-wing host Sean Hannity. "Yes, those are the type of things that for more than one reason need to be cut." Palin did not elaborate on what the other reasons might be for chopping the NEA budget. But the government of every major civilization in world history has also prominently funded the arts. The comment about the NEA came during a discussion of the ailing U.S. economy. Palin is certainly conversant with frivolous activity, but her grasp of the economy is weak. Debt reduction would barely be affected by penciling out the small federal arts agency, which currently operates on a $161-million annual budget. Palin's support of a federal subsidy for the notorious "bridge to nowhere" in her state became a campaign issue when she ran for vice president on the 2008 Republican ticket. That local project carried a price tag of $223 million. "Reality is we have 15 million Americans who are out of work," said Palin. Nationally, the nonprofit arts and culture industry supports 5.7 million jobs and generates $166.2 billion in annual economic activity, according to Americans for the Arts. The NEA is one linchpin in that sizable economy. In the interview Palin made no statement advocating similar budget cuts to her home state as she recommended for the NEA, which is also in the cross hairs of Washington's Republican leadership. Palin's Alaska gets $1.84 in federal spending for every dollar its citizens pay in federal taxes. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/culturemonster/2011/03/palin-trashes-national-endowment-for-the-arts.html

Sarah Palin, perhaps the most closely watched of all potential 2012 Republican presidential candidates, is viewed in an unfavorable light by 60 percent of those questioned in a new Bloomberg News poll. Palin's numbers suggest she would face a challenge in attracting voters beyond her conservative base if she decides to run for president next year. Bloomberg's survey of 1,001 adults was taken between March 4-7 by the Iowa firm, Selzer & Co. The margin of error was plus or minus 3.1 percentage points. Within the 60 percent who disapproved of Palin, 38 percent said they had "very unfavorable" feelings about her. She was viewed favorably by 28 percent, with only 4 percent not sure how they felt. A December Bloomberg poll had Palin's unfavorable rating at 57 percent. http://www.politicsdaily.com/2011/03/11/sarah-palins-favorability-rating-slips-in-new-poll/

Palin Reverses Support Of Breastfeeding After She Finds Out That A Democrat Also Supports It. Michelle Obama: Breastfeeding is one of the most effective preventive measures mothers can take to protect their children's and their own health. Breastfeeding helps reduce children's risk of acute and chronic diseases like ear infections, asthma, obesity, and type 2 diabetes, rare but serious diseases like childhood leukemia, and even sudden infant death syndrome, thanks to antibodies, cells, and immunologic components uniquely available in mothers' milk. Breastfeeding also protects nursing mothers against diseases like type 2 diabetes and breast and ovarian cancers. Governor Palin, circa 2007: WHEREAS, throughout their lives, breastfeeding can offer children protection against serious health conditions, including obesity, diabetes, and high blood pressure. Breastfeeding also saves lives by reducing the incidence of life-threatening cancers in women and preventing premature death in infants. [...] WHEREAS, government and community organizations have a vested interest in protecting and promoting breastfeeding as a means of preventing infant malnutrition, morbidity, and mortality. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/17/palin-reverses-support-of-breastfeeding_n_824841.html

Well, well, well, let's have a look at Sarah Palin's qualifications as administrator, business woman, team player and multi-tasking supermom. Let's have a good look at her work ethic. http://palingates.blogspot.com/2011/02/sarah-palins-qualifications-and-work.html

Some details on Sarah Palin's crazed attempt to register a trademark in her name; apart from making stupid errors in her application, there's the curious business that she considers "running for election" to be the same as using her name in commerce. Also, turns out Bristol Palin also wants a trademark on her name, for "motivational speaking services in the field of life choices." http://www.boingboing.net/2011/02/06/sarah-palin-circle-r.html

Can Babygate bring Sarah Palin down? Considering that serious wrongdoings have been extensively reported and failed to touch her (yet), perhaps a "gate" denied so fiercely by her fans will do the trick. They refuse to discuss it and very infrequently offer some feeble excuses, just in case the story breaks in the national media. There have been recent rumours about it happening soon. The plot thickened a bit when Patrick's "Palin Deceives" account was reported to Flickr and inactivated a couple of days ago. I don't know what will happen to the Flickr account, but Patrick has every single photo saved to disk and may decide to publish them on another photo sharing site. http://palingates.blogspot.com/2011/02/is-babygate-politically-relevant.html

Palin received a roaring ovation, but Reagan's son told The Associated Press in an interview that he doesn't see anything in common between his dad and the former Alaska governor, who was invited to speak by the event's sponsor, the conservative Young America's Foundation. "Sarah Palin is a soap opera, basically. She's doing mostly what she does to make money and keep her name in the news," Ron Reagan says. "She is not a serious candidate for president and never has been," said Reagan, a political independent whose politics lean left. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/05/palin-america-reagan_n_819073.html

Sarah Palin casts herself in Reagan mold, blasts Obama administration. At a Santa Barbara event celebrating the 100th anniversary of Reagan's birth, she calls for smaller government.Revisiting themes familiar from her 2008 campaign, she said the nation was being shackled by high debt due to wars and tax cuts and taxes on the ultra rich, dense government regulation on mortgages and financial markets and rising spending, often for programs that don't work. She said a rush toward green energy was overlooking the nation's oil and natural gas reserves, a choice that will cost jobs and drive up pump prices. She blamed Washington leaders – an apparent reference to the Obama administration – for doing "everything in their power to stymie responsible domestic drilling like the Deepwater Horizon." http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-palin-reagan-20110205,0,5876331.story

"the purveyors of hatred and division" for "reckless speech," saying the nation's airwaves were too often used "to keep some people as paranoid as possible and the rest of us all torn up and upset with each other. They spread hate, they leave the impression that, by their very words, that violence is acceptable."

Not many Alaskans, Democrat or Republican, are fond of Sarah Palin, a recent Public Policy Polling survey finds. According to the poll, Palin has a dismal 33 percent favorability rating in her home state. That's a 12-point drop from last winter, a similar poll finds. The origins of her current ratings stretch beyond party lines, with the predictable chilliness of Democrats toward their former half-term governor matching the sentiments of both Republicans and Independents. While Palin has substantial Republican support beyond state lines, 30 percent of the Alaskans surveyed by PPP view the former vice presidential candidate unfavorably. Among Independents, 65 percent have an unfavorable opinion of her. Out of the ten states in which PPP has already conducted similar surveys on Palin's popularity, only the Democratic stronghold of Massachusetts has exhibited a lower favorability rating of the "mama grizzly" (27 percent). http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/28/sarah-palin-popularity-poll_n_801907.html

Sarah Palin's bizarre cheap shots at Michelle Obama. http://opinion.latimes.com/opinionla/2010/12/sarah-palins-bizarre-cheap-shots-at-michelle-obama.html

"Sarah Palin's Alaska" didn't debut until Sunday night, but the former governor has been defending it for weeks. After Karl Rove wondered how a reality show fit "the American calculus of 'that helps me see you in the Oval Office,'" Fox News gave Palin a chance to respond. "You know, I agree with that," she said. "Those standards have to be high for someone who would ever want to run for president, like, um, wasn't Ronald Reagan an actor? Wasn't he in 'Bedtimes for Bonzo,' 'Bozo' or something?" The movie was "Bedtime for Bonzo," but no matter: What Palin should have mentioned was " General Electric Theater," the television show Reagan hosted and occasionally starred in from 1954 to 1962. It would have made Palin's point nicely. Instead, her comment hinted at a different one altogether: that Palin has an appallingly and disturbingly superficial knowledge of Reagan's career and principles. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-fehrman-20101115,0,2819276.story

"Mr Attorney General, tear down this First Amendment!" http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/08/sarah-palin-wikileaks_n_794115.html

"What a joke. I was a fan before the show. No one who is a true hunter lets others carry their rifle or can't load their own shells. Sarah, you are a phony in this area of your 'skills." Several others wondered why Palin, an experienced hunter, didn't bring her own rifle, pointing out that familiarity with one's weapon is a core principle of hunting. Another pointed out, regarding Palin's veteran hunter dad, "I was surprised to see him using the gun as a walking stick." Several hunter friends to whom I showed the video were less than impressed. All agreed that she did not look like she had handled a gun many times. One, who just posted his November kill on his Facebook profile, said "I would not hunt with her." http://www.theawl.com/2010/12/sarah-palin-the-tv-star-exposes-sarah-palin-the-fake-hunter

Glenn Beck believes in four insane things before breakfast. Missed in the brouhaha over Sarah Palin's verbal flub about our North Korean "allies," and much more telling: According to host Glenn Beck's own transcript, Beck's very next utterance was to proclaim that the "mystery" jet contrail recently seen in California (explained weeks ago (even by Fox News online) as almost certainly an optical illusion created by still air and a jet contrail from a known UPS delivery flight) was in fact a secret two-stage missile launch by the Chinese government to assert their power over America, "sending a signal that the world has changed." Beck then went on to state that the Chinese "control the world." Did Sarah Palin, would-be leader of the United States, disagree with any of this? Nope. Palin's verbatim response: "Well, that's right." http://www.boingboing.net/2010/11/26/glenn-beck-believes.html

The website Conservatives4Palin (apparently named by Prince) offers a top ten list of reasons why Sarah Palin is qualified to be president. Here's all you need to know about that list: "Ten years volunteer work in the Parent-Teacher-Association" is second. Makes you wonder what #3 is, doesn't it? "Two years pro-life advocacy." But this is my favorite part. Number five on the list is "Two and a half years governing the largest state in America." Of course, it's the smallest state by population (or very close to it). Apparently, governing empty land is valuable experience. But this is the punchline: As her state's chief executive, Palin not only oversaw 15,000 state employees and a $12 billion budget, she was immersed in the threats facing our nation as her state is the first line of defense against rogue ballistic and nuclear weapons that might be fired from North Korea or the former Soviet Union. http://scienceblogs.com/dispatches/2010/11/palins_qualifications_for_pres.php#more

"But obviously, we've got to stand with our North Korean allies." Palin said in her analysis. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/24/sarah-palin-north-korea_n_788107.html

If you think this is just a coincidence -- hey, great minds think alike! -- consider one other piece of information: In her acknowledgements section, Palin offers a "special thanks to the brilliant, independent self-starter who got her start in Alaska, Jessica Gavora. Thank you for your most important work on America by Heart." Gavora is the wife of Jonah Goldberg; Goldberg recently tweeted that his wife "worked with Sarah Palin on her new book." http://mediamatters.org/blog/201011230026

If logic applied to Palin’s career trajectory, this month might have been judged dreadful for her. In an otherwise great year for Republicans she endorsed a “Star Wars” bar gaggle of anomalous and wacky losers — the former witch, Christine O’Donnell; the raging nativist, Tom Tancredo; and at least two candidates who called for armed insurrection against the government, Sharron Angle and a would-be Texas congressman, Stephen Broden, who lost by over 50 percentage points. Last week voters in Palin’s home state humiliatingly “refudiated” her protégé, Joe Miller, overturning his victory in the G.O.P. Senate primary with a write-in campaign. But logic doesn’t apply to Palin. What might bring down other politicians only seems to make her stronger: the malapropisms and gaffes, the cut-and-run half-term governorship, family scandals, shameless lying and rapacious self-merchandising. In an angry time when America’s experts and elites all seem to have failed, her amateurism and liabilities are badges of honor. She has turned fallibility into a formula for success. Republican leaders who want to stop her, and they are legion, are utterly baffled about how to do so. Democrats, who gloat that she’s the Republicans’ problem, may be humoring themselves. When Palin told Barbara Walters last week that she believed she could beat Barack Obama in 2012, it wasn’t an idle boast. Should Michael Bloomberg decide to spend billions on a quixotic run as a third-party spoiler, all bets on Obama are off. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/21/opinion/21rich.html

Perhaps the most defining feature of "America by Heart" is Palin's capacity to boil down complicated political battles into pure political simplicity. The Cold War, for example, was won because "the differences between the United States and the Soviet Union were real -- and consequential" and "one of those differences was a belief in God." Opposition to an Islamic Cultural Center in downtown Manhattan, meanwhile, was hardly an exercise in religious intolerance. "[I]t's what our Founders called 'a decent respect for the opinions of mankind' -- or in this case their fellow Americans." America's problems, in the end, are partially due to the fact that "we may be creating a generation of entitled little whiners." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/19/sarah-palin-book-america-by-heart_n_786290.html

Rosanne Cash, daughter of legendary country singer and songwriter Johnny Cash, tweeted her way into politics again Tuesday, sending out a dispatch batting former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin for supposed hypocrisy in her criticism of President Obama as an unvetted, unprepared leader. The musician tweeted Tuesday: He was pres. of the Harvard law review, a constitutional scholar and a Senator. And you? http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/17/rosanne-cash-sarah-palin_n_785037.html

Willow Palin, the 16-year-old daughter of former Alaska governor Sarah Palin, wrote multiple Facebook posts containing homophobic slurs such as "faggot" on Sunday night, according to TMZ. The web site reports that Palin's teenage daughter wrote the comments on Sunday night, when her mother's television show "Sarah Palin's Alaska" premiered on TLC. According to TMZ, a classmate of one of Palin's children published a Facebook update claiming that the show "is failing so hard right now." Willow Palin reportedly unloaded on the student, calling him "so gay" and "such a faggot." She later demanded that the student "quit talkin shit about my family." According to screenshots obtained by TMZ, the 16-year-old called another commenter on the Facebook thread a "low life loser" and lashed out at multiple others, writing, "Sorry that all you guys are jealous of my families success and you guys aren't goin to go anywhere with your lives." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/16/willow-palin-facebook-posts_n_784585.html

Sarah Palin accused of breaking countryside rules in TV nature show. The former Alaska governor was filmed fishing too close to protected bears, claims environmentalist. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/nov/14/sarah-palin-bears-alaska-television

At 52%, Palin's Unfavorable Score Hits a New High. http://www.gallup.com/poll/144491/Palin-Unfavorable-Score-Hits-New-High.aspx

Even more unusual were the specifics of Palin's critique: As WSJ's Sudeep Reddy pointed out Monday, she doesn't get all of her facts right. In response to Palin's assertion that "everyone who ever goes out shopping for groceries knows that prices have risen significantly over the past year or so," Reddy wrote Monday that "Grocery prices haven't risen all that significantly, in fact." He notes that prices have actually increased only 0.6 percent over the past year. It's the lowest rate on record -- so low that it inspired a high-profile Twitter fight late last month. But Palin would have none of it. She wrote in her Facebook note, "That's odd, because just last Thursday, November 4, I read an article in Mr. Reddy's own Wall Street Journal titled 'Food Sellers Grit Teeth, Raise Prices: Packagers and Supermarkets Pressured to Pass Along Rising Costs, Even as Consumers Pinch Pennies.' She continued: Now I realize I'm just a former governor and current housewife from Alaska, but even humble folks like me can read the newspaper. I'm surprised a prestigious reporter for the Wall Street Journal doesn't. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/09/sarah-palin-federal-reserve_n_780833.html

Starting from the top, GOP critics of Palin reportedly include former president George W. Bush. “The 43rd President has told friends the ex-Alaska governor isn't qualified to be President and criticizes Arizona Sen. John McCain for putting Palin on the 2008 GOP ticket and handing her a national platform,” New York Daily New Washington bureau chief Thomas DeFrank reported Friday. "He thinks McCain ran a lousy campaign with an unqualified running mate and destroyed any chance of winning by picking Palin,” a Republican official “familiar with Bush’s thinking” told DeFrank. Karl Rove, Bush’s political mastermind, had already questioned whether Palin had the “gravitas” to be president – or even the fortitude to withstand the rigors of a long, bruising campaign. In recent days, two former Republican speechwriters have weighed in unfavorably on Palin as well. Michael Gerson, a top aide in the Bush White House, says that in some ways Palin has become “a threat to the Republican future.” Most recently, Gerson writes in his Washington Post column, that’s the result of her endorsement of Constitution Party gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo in Colorado. Tancredo, a former Republican congressman, is a divisive figure best known for his virulent, sometimes racist anti-immigrant pronouncements “Her endorsement raises the question of whether Palin has any standards for her support other than anti-government rhetoric,” Gerson writes. “Either as a power broker or a candidate in the 2012 election, Palin's increasingly erratic political judgment should raise Republican concerns.” http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Election-2010/Vox-News/2010/1106/Republican-establishment-takes-on-Sarah-Palin

"The point is not 'He was a great man and you are a nincompoop,' though that is true," Noonan continues. "The point is that Reagan's career is a guide, not only for the tea party but for all in politics. He brought his fully mature, fully seasoned self into politics with him. He wasn't in search of a life when he ran for office, and he wasn't in search of fame; he'd already lived a life, he was already well known, he'd accomplished things in the world." Though Noonan's piece is not simply a jab at Palin, but rather a larger message about the real political significance of one's actions and accomplishments, as well as the necessity to "earn your way into politics," it's also worth noting that Noonan has never shied away from writing confrontational columns about the former Alaska Governor. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/06/peggy-noonan-sarah-palin_n_779624.html

27 wins to 15 losses. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/03/sarah-palin-endorsements_n_778556.html

Examples of Sarah Palin being such an "idol" for politically extreme or disturbed people are not very difficult to find. Unfortunately, these people don't just linger around at the Peezoo or other Palinbot websites, but also might have influential jobs - like Andrew Shirvell, the Assistant General Attorney of Michigan. He hit the news big time this week, especially after Anderson Cooper produced an outstanding report about him. Andrew Shirvell is obsessed with a guy called Chris Armstrong, who is the openly gay President of the Student Council of Michigan. Shirvell started a blog called "Chris Armstrong Watch" several months ago, which has now been made private after the report by Anderson Cooper. This blog by Andrew Shirvell is one of the worst examples of cyber-stalking, homophobia and obsession I have ever seen online. The pages of this now private blog have been saved, but I don't think that it's necessary to display them, as they heavily violate Chris Armstrong's right to privacy and are very offensive. In the CNN report by Anderson Cooper the case is explained in greater detail. Andrew Shirvell not only followed Chris Armstrong around for months and took pictures, but also copied for example facebook postings by him and his friends and put them online, together with long hate-filled rants about the "privileged pervert" Chris Armstrong, including for example displaying a picture of him with the "rainbow" flag and a swastika on it. http://palingates.blogspot.com/2010/10/palingates-monthly-message-bonus-andrew.html

Sarah Palin's comments Friday make a 2012 run a sure thing, says Mark McKinnon, who outlines the surprising ramifications for the GOP, Obama—and a possible third party candidacy. Sarah Palin is running for president. Book it. She cracked the door open in Iowa Friday night, and once that door is open, it doesn't shut. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-09-18/sarah-palins-2012-presidential-campaign-will-alienate-moderate-republicans/

Sarah Palin calls for religious intolerance.

Sarah Palin: The Sound and the Fury. Even as Sarah Palin’s public voice grows louder, she has become increasingly secretive, walling herself off from old friends and associates, and attempting to enforce silence from those around her. Following the former Alaska governor’s road show, the author delves into the surreal new world Palin now inhabits—a place of fear, anger, and illusion, which has swallowed up the engaging, small-town hockey mom and her family—and the sadness she has left in her wake. http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/features/2010/10/sarah-palin-201010

http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2010/04/why_palins_biggest_presidentia.html

http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2010/09/the_case_for_why_sarah_palin_w.html

http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2010/03/tea_party_convention_organizer.html

Vanity Fair's Sarah Palin Profiler: 'The Worst Stuff Isn't Even In There' "The worst stuff isn't even in there," Michael Joseph Gross said on "Morning Joe" Thursday. "I couldn't believe these stories either when I first heard them, and I started this story with a prejudice in her favor. I have a lot in common with this woman. I'm a small-town person, I'm a Christian, I think that a lot of her criticisms of the media actually have something to them. And I think she got a bum ride, but everybody close to her tells the same story." In the profile, Gross paints Palin as an abusive, retaliatory figure with an extreme ability to lie. "This is a person for whom there is no topic too small to lie about," he said. "She lies about everything." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/09/02/vanity-fairs-sarah-palin-_n_703412.html

McGinniss would not reveal what his book will say about the former governor. But he did get a taste of the support Palin has inspired. "It's just a peculiar thing, but she does, as I found out in May, she presses a button and what comes back is hate," he said. "The people who respond when she complains about something are just so filled with hate. I got some of the ugliest, most vile e-mails directed at me, my grandchildren, my children, my wife – just ugly, ugly stuff." As for his interviews, most people he approached in Palin's hometown were willing to speak, but he said there was what he calls an "undercurrent of fear." "People – I don't know if they're afraid of shadows or whether there's something real there – she's no longer in a position of governmental influence but there are people up there who are scared to death to talk because if Sarah ever found out they talked, oh, something terrible would happen to them," he said. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/09/04/joe-mcginniss-palin-neigh_n_705905.html

Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) said that former House Speaker Newt Gingrich would be "the last person" he'd vote for in a presidential election when speaking at a town hall meeting in his home state last week, the Tusla World reports. "[Gingrich] "is a super-smart man, but he doesn't know anything about commitment to marriage," explained the conservative Senator. "He's the last person I'd vote for for president of the United States. His life indicates he does not have a commitment to the character traits necessary to be a great president." The criticism comes in the wake of reports that Gingrich is strongly considering making a bid for the White House in 2012. Earlier this month, ex-wife of the former Speaker, Marianne Gingrich, offered a rare glimpse into the personal life and relationship history of the possible presidential contender. In an Esquire profile she said of her one-time husband, now on his third marriage, "[He] believes that what he says in public and how he lives don't have to be connected" and added, "If you believe that, then yeah, you can run for president. ... He always told me that he's always going to pull the rabbit out of the hat." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/30/tom-coburn-newt-gingrich-_n_699386.html

Sarah Palin's "Restoring Honor" Speech An Insult To Civil Rights Movement (Transcript) http://www.themidnightreview.com/2010/08/sarah-palins-restoring-honor-speech.html#more

McLeod: "Never has a governor lowered the bar as low as Palin has when she breached the public's trust over and over again. Her arrogance, sense of entitlement and recklessness while doing the people's business sets a very bad precedent. For her to be portrayed as a role model by the media is an absolute travesty. The more people find out about Palin...the more they learn that a 'servant's heart' does not beat within her." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/geoffrey-dunn/sarah-palins-latest-faceb_b_560001.html

According to Michael R. Leaveck, the real scandal, well hidden from public view is the fact that for example a donor like Gemperle Enterprises (Farms) was once a sponsor of CSU Stanislaus "Presidential Scholarships," a program that has been discontinued as of this year due to economic hard times. Instead, this year, Gemperle Farms is a $10,000 sponsor of the 50th Anniversary Black Tie Gala, featuring Sarah Palin! Therefore it's a fact that this Palin fundraiser is just a show and a scam - the Foundation would have most likely raised this money even without Sarah Palin. But Matt Swanson & Co. ensured that they would have a big political show as well - and Sarah Palin can now wrongly credit herself with having raised a large amount of money for the Foundation. http://palingates.blogspot.com/2010/06/sarah-palins-speech-tonight-at-csu.html

Honor restored: "I had sex with No. 2," Rozetta said. http://www.nctimes.com/articles/2007/10/18/news/top_stories/1_02_4910_17_07.txt

“Does anyone seriously believe that Dr. Laura Schlessinger is not a racist?” http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-08-22/republicans-long-hot-racist-summer/

Once the service ended, Sarah and Todd pretty much stuck to themselves. I don't think they were being polite or restrained. No one sought them out. They were surrounded by people who revile them and it showed. http://palingates.blogspot.com/2010/08/sarah-and-todd-palin-at-ted-stevens.html

Stupid white girl. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-08-20/sarah-palins-dr-laura-tweet-black-republicans-react/

Sarah Palin Endorses Sharron Angle In Nevada Race: 'She's NUTS!!!' http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/17/sarah-palin-endorses-shar_n_685465.html

GOP strategist Ed Rollins says Michael Steele has "failed miserably" in his responsibilities as chairman of the Republican National Committee. Rollins took the shot at the Republican leader, who has been no stranger to controversy, on CBS' "Face the Nation" over the weekend. "Obviously he's been a disaster," explained Rollins to host Bob Schieffer. "Michael Steele has failed miserably in the things you're supposed to do -- raise money and basically go out and articulate the message." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/16/ed-rollins-gop-strategist_n_683102.html

A new nationwide survey of Republican voters finds that support for former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin to win the GOP's 2012 presidential nomination has fallen by one-third since March, sliding from 18 points to 12 points. Palin is now running in fourth place for the nomination behind former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/16/palin-sinking_n_684053.html

Racists, Bigots & Homophobes

GOP official apologizes for email picturing Obama as a chimpanzee but refuses to resign. An Orange County Republican Party official who sent an email that included President Obama's face superimposed on that of a chimpanzee with the words "Now you know why — No birth certificate!" issued an apology Wednesday but said she will not resign. At a news conference, Marilyn Davenport, an elected member of the party's central committee, said it was "unwise" to send the email and didn't realize how much it would offend people. When pressed by a reporter, she said the apology was to anyone who was offended as well as to President Obama himself. But she said she will not step down from her party position, as some officials have requested. She said she's heard from many Orange County Republicans to stay put. "Out of respect for my constituents, I will remain in office, to support racism and bigotry" she said at the news conference, which was broadcast live on KTLA News. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2011/04/gop-official-apologizes-to-obama-for-chimpanzee-email-but-refuses-to-resign.html

Alas, poor Aurick. Neo-Nazi who antagonized Rep. Bob Filner gets a visit from the cops. http://www.sdcitybeat.com/sandiego/article-8894-alas-poor-aurick.html

Indiana Official 'No Longer Employed' After Reportedly Urging Wisconsin Police To Shoot Protesters. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/23/indiana-official-shoot-protesters_n_827389.html

Tea Party Leader Plans to Infiltrate Union "Goons" http://motherjones.com/mojo/2011/02/tea-party-leader-plan-infiltrate-wisconsin-seiu-wiunion

Racists Totally Freak Out Over Idris Elba Playing Norse God in 'Thor' Marvel is headed by radical left-wingers who insert their ideologies and agendas into their comic books and movies. In February 2010, the TEA Party movement was viciously attacked in an issue of Captain America. Marvel editor-in-chief Joe Qesada publicly defended the issue. Marvel creator and front man Stan "Lee" Lieber is a notorious left-winger and financier of left-wing political candidates. http://www.comicsalliance.com/2010/12/16/racists-thor-idris-ebla-racism/

Judson Phillips, founder of Tea Party Nation, one of the country's most prominent tea party organizations, really seems to despise the Methodist Church, or as he would call it, "the first Church of Karl Marx." In a recent blog post (subscription required) the founder of Tea Party Nation recounts his recent experience visiting the United Methodist Building in Washington D.C., where saw a promotional banner for the DREAM Act, a failed piece of legislation that would have provided a path to citizenship for some undocumented immigrants who entered the country as children. Such a stance could only mean one thing, Phillips concluded. "The Methodist church is pro-illegal immigration," he said. "They have been in the bag for socialist health care, going as far as sending out emails to their membership 'debunking' the myths of Obamacare. Say, where are the liberal complaints on the separation of church and state?" http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/20/judson-phillips-tea-party-methodist_n_799351.html

The Family Research Council is an influential Washington-based advocacy group with deep roots in the religious right. Its annual political forum, the Values Voter Summit, has become a nearly obligatory stop for ambitious Republican office-seekers hoping to win the support of so-called values voters. In recent years, the council has given an increasing share of its attention to opposing marriage equality and open military service by gays and lesbians. Now, the two groups are locked in a sharp confrontation that raises crucial questions about where the expression of religiously based views on social issues ends and hate speech begins. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-rutten-gay-hate-20101201,0,6482418.column

What's with Glenn Beck's fascination with Nazis? Fox News' Glenn Beck says liberal philanthropist George Soros was complicit in "sending Jews to the death camps" – even though Soros escaped the Holocaust as a young Jewish teenager. http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Election-2010/Vox-News/2010/1113/What-s-with-Glenn-Beck-s-fascination-with-Nazis

Anti-Semitism, like all ideologies, tells a story about the world. It’s a story about almost occult Jewish power, about cabals that manipulate world events for their own gain. In classic anti-Semitic narratives, Jews control both the elites and the masses; they’re responsible for the communist revolution and the speculative excesses of capitalism. Their goal is to undermine society so that they can take over. Through the lens of anti-Semitism, social division, runaway inflation, and moral breakdown all make sense because they all have the same cause. Nazi propaganda called Jews drahtzieher—wire-pullers. They constitute a power above and beyond ordinary government authority. “There is a super-government which is allied to no government, which is free from them all, and yet which has its hand in them all,” Henry Ford wrote in The International Jew. If you know this history, you’ll understand why Glenn Beck’s two-part “exposé” on George Soros, whom Beck calls “The Puppet Master,” was so shocking, even by Beck’s degraded standards. The program, which aired Tuesday and Wednesday, was a symphony of anti-Semitic dog-whistles. Nothing like it has ever been on American television before. “There is a crisis collapsing our economy—George Soros,” Beck said on Tuesday’s show. “When the administration and progressives look for a savior to step in and save the day—George Soros… He’s pulled no punches about the end game. It’s one world government, the end of America's status as the prevailing world power—but why?” Because, Beck suggests, Soros wants to rule us all like a God: “Soros has admitted in the past he doesn't believe in God, but that's perhaps because he thinks he is.” http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-11-10/glenn-becks-anti-semitic-attack-on-george-soros

Bob Filner was terrrified of us we outnumbered his paid support staff. He ran like a coward through the hall last night and refused to talk with Popaditch. We cornered him up against a poll and shouted at him but I could get all of that on video but you’ll see we’re running and very excited at one point that was the best part to see Filner’s fear and even the cops were afraid of us! At several times there were minor fights between Nick’s supporters and the paid staff of Filner. One man said this is just the begining. Yes, I say its the begining of a rebellion! I make a comparative look at simmilar rebellions of the past. I ask you what is left to us when politics fails? http://lastblogonearth.com/2010/11/05/white-power-popaditch-supporter-brags-about-golden-hall-violence-calls-for-armed-revolution/

Pictures of Muslims Wearing Things. http://muslimswearingthings.tumblr.com/

I stumbled across my evidence through an e-mail alert I received for tea party “meet-ups” near where I live. When I noticed a tea party meet-up in south Orange County [Calif.] being held at a church, I couldn’t resist taking a closer look. Five clicks later I was enthralled by a document that I found both horrifying and revealing. The document was titled “The Non-Ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment” and written by A.H. Ellett, a retired Utah Supreme Court justice. Ironically, the tea party movement generally “supports with worshipful intensity the constitution of the United States,” according to historian Mark Lilla, but when its followers say “Constitution” they don’t mean the same U.S. Constitution that you and I mean. The recent issue for the tea party has been the repeal of the 14th Amendment. But repeal is just one small step compared to the giant leap that Justice Ellett makes in claiming that the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments (the so-called Reconstruction Amendments) were never legally (i.e. constitutionally) ratified in the first place. When the tea party folk say that they want their country back, I’m starting to understand just how far back they want it—back before the Civil War! http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/the_tea_party_its_worse_than_you_think_20101007/#

The Atlanta Journal Constitution reported on the message in question on Tuesday evening: The comment was posted on Joe.My.God., a blog dedicated to gay and lesbian issues, shortly after a Democratic bid to repeal "don't ask, don't tell" faltered in the U.S. Senate. "All [gays] must die," wrote the commenter, identifying himself as "Jimmy." The blog's readers traced the Internet Protocol address to the suburban Atlanta complex where Chambliss has an office. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/09/22/saxby-chambliss-anti-gay-slur-my-office_n_735844.html

What happens when a new gay conservative group finds itself in a room full of conspiracy-spewing wingnuts? John Avlon witnesses a dangerous culture clash. Gay marriage is “a state sanction of sinful behavior” and homosexuality “a sinful and socially destructive lifestyle”—according to the author of the Tea Party Manifesto and founder of WorldNetDaily, Joe Farah. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-09-18/gay-conservatives-can-they-be-conservative/

Republican candidate for governor Carl Paladino said he would transform some New York prisons into dormitories for welfare recipients, where they could work in state-sponsored jobs, get employment training and take lessons in "personal hygiene." Paladino, a wealthy Buffalo real estate developer popular with many tea party activists, isn't saying the state should jail poor people: The program would be voluntary. But the suggestion that poor families would be better off in remote institutions, rather than among friends and family in their own neighborhoods, struck some anti-poverty activists as insulting. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/22/carl-paladino-backs-welfa_n_690284.html

Yet today, I am afraid for my children. I am afraid that when they turn the TV on, or listen to the radio (which I now turn off when we are in the car), they will receive a very different message from the one my father shared with us. The message they hear today is of intolerance. Whether it be about an Islamic center in New York blocks from ground zero or a mosque in Temecula, their faith is being openly and viciously maligned, and they themselves are made to feel responsible for the attacks on 9/11. My children were born here, and they consider themselves as wholly American, but I fear that the current discourse about their faith and their houses of worship will have a devastating effect on them. My father knew something greater about America than what is spouted by Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich and the host of professional bigots who have built a cottage industry out of Muslim-baiting. He knew that the power of America is in its acceptance and openness. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-tarin-mosque-20100818,0,57635.story

It's not clear exactly who Schlessinger claims took her free speech away, though she suggests special interest groups are silencing her by pressuring sponsors. Without the ability to earn a living, she said, "I don't have the right to say what I need to say. My first amendment rights have been usurped." Schlessinger's announcement -- and her invocation of a constitutional right to earn a living from her speech -- was made on Larry King Live. http://www.boingboing.net/2010/08/18/dr-laura-criticism-o.html#more

Birther Bagger Queen Orly Taitz Smacked Down By Supreme Court On 'Frivolous' Litigation Fine http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/16/birther-queen-orly-taitz_n_683188.html

Resent their portrayal in news stories. Liberal commentators including Eric Boehlert. of MediaMatters argue that some news organizations have overstated the clout of the Tea Party, but the activists USA TODAY interviewed call coverage in many newspapers and TV outlets unfairly negative. They bristle in particular at stories that portray them as racists. Some members of the Congressional Black Caucus, including Rep. Emanuel. Cleaver, D-Mo., said they were subjected to racial epithets during a demonstration by Tea Party activists on Capitol Hill earlier this year. Last month, the NAACP asked Tea Party activists to disavow the racist rhetoric of some members of the movement. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ynews_spec/ynews_spec_pl3411

Limbaugh declares: "I'm a racist." http://mediamatters.org/limbaughwire/2010/08/11#0035

Ignorance of the Constitution

The Founding Fathers Versus the Tea Party. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/24/opinion/24chernow.html?pagewanted=1&ref=general&src=me

"Stop throwing the Constitution in my face," Bush screamed back. "It's just a goddamned piece of paper!" I've talked to three people present for the meeting that day and they all confirm that the President of the United States called the Constitution "a goddamned piece of paper." http://www.capitolhillblue.com/artman/publish/article_7779.shtml

It's not clear exactly who Schlessinger claims took her free speech away, though she suggests special interest groups are silencing her by pressuring sponsors. Without the ability to earn a living, she said, "I don't have the right to say what I need to say. My first amendment rights have been usurped." Schlessinger's announcement -- and her invocation of a constitutional right to earn a living from her speech -- was made on Larry King Live. http://www.boingboing.net/2010/08/18/dr-laura-criticism-o.html#more

Christian War on Islam

Pastor of church that burned Koran calls Afghan mob killings 'very tragic' After first promising to not burn the Koran, Florida Pastor Terry Jones sat as judge at a 'trial' for the holy book last month. The Koran was 'found guilty and a copy was burned,' a church press release said. That news apparently incited the attack on a U.N. compound. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-koran-pastor-20110402,0,4120847.story

Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca shot back at a congressman who warned him during a congressional hearing Thursday that a Muslim group the sheriff supports is affiliated with terrorists and is "using" him. The reference to the Council on American-Islamic Relations, whose Southern California branch Baca has allied with, came during a controversial House hearing on the question of whether American Muslims are becoming radicalized. "You are aware" that CAIR is affiliated with Hamas, Rep. Chip Cravaack (R-Minn.) said. "No I'm not aware," Baca interrupted. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2011/03/sheriff-baca-gop-congressman-clash-over-links-to-muslim-group.html

King’s anti-terror credentials are spotty. His anti-Muslim credentials, on the other hand, are excellent. The new Homeland Security chairman opens hearings on American Muslim terrorists this week. Peter Beinart on how the GOP’s shameful religious intolerance obscures the real homeland threat. Representative Peter King. King, a Long Island Republican, will hold hearings this week on terrorism by American Muslims. Think about that for a second. King isn’t holding hearings on domestic terrorism; he’s holding hearings on domestic terrorism by one religious group. Is most American terrorism Muslim terrorism? Actually, no. Over the last decade or so, there’s been at least as much domestic terrorism by folks like Timothy McVeigh, Theodore Kaczynski, Eric Rudolph (who bombed the 1996 Atlanta Olympics), Bruce Edwards Ivins (the main suspect in the 2001 anthrax attacks), and most recently, Jared Lee Loughner. But even if American Muslims are statistically more likely to commit terrorism than non-Muslims, it is still wrong to define the problem in religious terms. I’m pretty sure that in the 1950s, Jews—given their overrepresentation in the American Communist Party—were overrepresented as Soviet spies. Italians may have been overrepresented in organized crime. Yet for a member of Congress to define either Soviet subversion or organized crime as the province of a particular religious or ethnic group would still have been wrong. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-03-06/peter-kings-anti-muslim-bigotry-haunts-terrorism-hearings/

How We Train Our Cops to Fear Islam. There aren’t nearly enough counterterrorism experts to instruct all of America’s police. So we got these guys instead. http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/features/2011/1103.stalcup-craze.html

Pamela Geller is pretty worked up about the Southern Poverty Law Center's designation of her group, Stop Islamization of America, as a hate group. But not because she gives the designation any credence. On the contrary, Geller -- the blogger behind Atlas Shrugs and one of the most vociferous opponents to a planned Muslim community center near Ground Zero in New York City -- says "a slam from the SPLC is a badge of honor." Stop Islamization of America was included as a hate group in the SPLC's Spring 2011 "Intelligence Report." The 9/11 Christian Center at Ground Zero group also made the list. The SPLC considers both groups "anti-Muslim." Geller told TPM in an email that Stop Islamization of America's parent group, the American Freedom Defense Initiative, has decided to create a kind of counter to the SPLC's list: an annual list of groups that are "Threats to Freedom." "The SPLC and CAIR [Council on American-Islamic Relations] will almost certainly make the initial listing, but not because they have demonized our human rights organization," Geller wrote. "This is by no means the first time that these organizations have set themselves up in opposition to individuals and groups like ours that are dedicated only to defending the freedom of speech and legal equality for all citizens. They need to be exposed, and we are going to expose them." http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/03/pam_geller_on_splc_hate_group_label_badge_of_honor.php

Video Captures Protesters, Politicians Berating Muslims at Yorba Linda Charity Function. http://blogs.ocweekly.com/navelgazing/2011/03/ed_royce_anti_muslim_rally.php http://politicalcorrection.org/blog/201103040006

Several weeks ago, Reps. Ed Royce and Gary Miller, two southern California Republicans with sizable Muslim constituencies, took part in a protest in Yorba Linda, an affluent suburb in Orange County. The demonstration was originally intended to protest the appearance of two controversial speakers at a fundraiser for a women's shelter organized by the Islamic Circle of North America, a New York-based group. The OC Weekly's Matt Coker sums up what happened: Men, women and scared-looking children file into a North County community center as people with signs and megaphones shout disgusting remarks at them. A Villa Park city councilwoman says into a microphone that she knows some Marines who would love to send these Americans, whom she labels "terrorists," "to paradise." One U.S. congressman who represents some of those walking into the center says tolerance of them has "paralyzed America." Another tells the vicious protesters he is "proud" of them and what they are doing. http://politicalcorrection.org/blog/201103030015

California man jailed in alleged attempt to blow up Dearborn mosque. Police: Suspect targeted large Arab-American, Muslim population. Roger Stockham, 63, was arraigned Wednesday on one count on a threat of terrorism or false report and one count of explosive-possession of bombs with unlawful intent for possession of Class C fireworks, Dearborn Police said. "He's very dangerous," Dearborn Police Chief Ron Haddad told the Free Press. "We took his threat to be very serious." Police didn't know whether Stockham had an attorney. A public records search did not turn up a listed number for Stockham, though Haddad said he lives in Imperial Beach, near San Diego. http://www.freep.com/article/20110130/NEWS02/110130013

Only hours after being sworn in, Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley gave a speech that created controversy and sparked fears of preferential treatment by saying that people who had not accepted Jesus Christ were not his brothers and sisters. Read more: http://www.allheadlinenews.com/briefs/articles/90031363?Alabama%20Governor%3A%20Non-Christians%20are%20not%20his%20%27brothers%20and%20sisters%27#ixzz1BY0cB8rc

Three Republican members of Congress from San Diego County have introduced a bill aimed at blocking the removal of the cross atop public land on Mt. Soledad in San Diego. The bill submitted by Reps. Duncan D. Hunter of Alpine, Darrell Issa of Vista and Brian Bilbray of Solana Beach comes in reaction to a decision by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals last week that the 43-foot-tall cross violated the constitutional separation of church and state by seeming to endorse a particular religion. The bill would allow religious symbols that are part of military monuments. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2011/01/three-republicans-introduce-bill-in-congress-to-save-cross-atop-mount-soledad.html

The politics of mosques and Korans show America to be in the worst spasm of paranoia and bigotry since the Cold War. Peter Beinart on the political roots of the enemy within. With each new attack on a mosque, each new anti-Muslim slur by a prominent politician or pundit, each new poll showing that large swaths of Americans think President Obama is lying about his faith, it becomes clearer that we are in the midst of a national psychosis: the worst spasm of paranoia and bigotry of the post-Cold War age. The interesting question is: Why now? http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-09-12/new-mccarthyism-palin-gingrich-and-us-paranoid-politics/?cid=hp:mainpromo6

Mr. Siby’s cousin and roommate, a chef named Abdoul-Karim Traoré, died at Windows on the World on Sept. 11, as did at least one other Muslim staff member, a banquet server named Shabir Ahmed from Bangladesh. Fekkak Mamdouh, an immigrant from Morocco who was head waiter, attended a worship service just weeks after the attacks that honored the estimated 60 Muslims who died. Far from being viewed as objectionable, the service was conducted with formal support from city, state and federal authorities, who arranged for buses to transport imams and mourners to Warren Street. There, within sight of the ruins, they chanted salat al-Ghaib, the funeral prayer when there is not an intact corpse. “It is a shame, shame, shame,” Mr. Mamdouh, 49, said of the Park51 dispute. “Sometimes I wake up and think, this is not what I came to America for. I came here to build this country together. People are using this issue for their own agenda. It’s designed to keep the hate going.” http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/11/nyregion/11religion.html?pagewanted=2&ref=general&src=me

General David Petraeus has condemned a Florida church's plans to burn Qurans this week, warning that the scene "could endanger troops" in Afghanistan. Petraeus told The Wall Street Journal Monday that Pastor Terry Jones' September 11 stunt could ignite violence from Taliban forces already versed in harnessing American headlines as propaganda: "It could endanger troops and it could endanger the overall effort," Gen. Petraeus said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. "It is precisely the kind of action the Taliban uses and could cause significant problems. Not just here, but everywhere in the world we are engaged with the Islamic community." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/09/06/general-david-petraeus-co_n_706718.html

"Today we are engaged in a final, all-out battle between Communistic Atheism and Christianity." http://adultthought.ucsd.edu/Culture_War/The_American_Taliban.html

Professor Newt's Distorted History Lesson. http://gotmedieval.blogspot.com/2010/08/professor-newts-distorted-history.html

Ignoring recent anti-Muslim incidents, right-wing media dismiss nationwide trend of "Islamophobia" Jonah Goldberg: "There isn't an anti-Muslim climate." In an August 26 column, titled, "The Islamophobia myth," Jonah Goldberg addressed a recent attack on a Muslim cab driver in New York City and wrote: "It's unavoidable that many will cite this as proof of the national wave of 'Islamophobia,' touted by Time magazine and other media outlets. We'll have to wait for the facts, but even if the allegations prove true, one assault doesn't a national trend make." Goldberg further asserted, "There isn't an anti-Muslim climate." http://mediamatters.org/research/201008260020

Mr. Jones, 58, a former hotel manager with a red face and a white handlebar mustache, argues that as an American Christian he has a right to burn Islam’s sacred book because “it’s full of lies.” And in another era, he might have been easily ignored, as he was last year when he posted a sign at his church declaring “Islam is of the devil.” http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/26/us/26gainesville.html

Limbaugh asked, "How can America be Islamophobic? We elected Obama, didn't we? If this is a nation that is Islamophobic, how do we elect a man whose name is 'Barack Hussein Obama'?" http://mediamatters.org/limbaughwire/2010/08/25#0046

Ignorance is too generous an alibi for Gingrich and Palin. They have been candidates for the most powerful job in the world. It is foolish to dismiss them as fools. A mosque at ground zero will interfere with their politics, in which the Muslim must be etched as an irredeemable zealot with manic eyes and foaming mouth; the mosque must be distorted into a fountainhead of hatred, and every Muslim be blamed for the sins of the few bigots and terrorists who perpetrated 9/11. A range of political forces has a vested interest in the myth of the mad Muslim as the last evil standing between civilization and chaos. The irony is that Palin and Gingrich do not represent the idealism and philosophy of America, a nation that is liberal, open, democratic, and secular. Gingrich is a false American; Palin is a falsetto American. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-08-14/the-mosque-at-ground-zero-why-it-scares-the-right

Hatred of California and HSR; denial of global warming

'Job killers' that aren't The California Chamber of Commerce routinely denounces bills that protect workers, consumers and the environment as job killers. But when the bills become law, there's no economic catastrophe. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-cohen-jobkillers-20110519,0,7296495.story

An effort by a handful of UC Berkeley scientists to reexamine temperature data underlying global warming research has landed in the center of a national political debate over government regulation. The Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature study is led by physicist Richard Muller, a longtime critic of the scientific consensus on climate change, who plans to testify on the effort Thursday before the House Science Committee, in the latest of several congressional inquiries on climate science since the GOP majority was seated. The Berkeley project's biggest private backer, with $150,000, is the Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation. Oil billionaires Charles and David Koch are the nation's most prominent funders of efforts to prevent curbs on fossil-fuel burning, the biggest contributor to planet-warming greenhouse gases. Temperature data from tens of thousands of weather stations across the globe, many of which have incomplete records, are "very contentious," Muller said in an interview. "The skeptics are raising legitimate concerns." Leading climate scientists, however, say the three most in-depth temperature studies agree on the overall severity and pace of global warming. They worry that the Berkeley effort, and the hearing Thursday, will add to public confusion on a topic that is as politically polarized as it is scientifically complex. http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-berkeley-climate-20110331,0,2472031.story

“Climate change is real, and man is causing it,” Mr. Hill said, echoing most climate scientists. “That is indisputable. And we have to do something about it.” A rain of boos showered Mr. Hill, including a hearty growl from Norman Dennison, a 50-year-old electrician and founder of the Corydon Tea Party. “It’s a flat-out lie,” Mr. Dennison said in an interview after the debate, adding that he had based his view on the preaching of Rush Limbaugh and the teaching of Scripture. “I read my Bible,” Mr. Dennison said. “He made this earth for us to utilize.” Skepticism and outright denial of global warming are among the articles of faith of the Tea Party movement, here in Indiana and across the country. For some, it is a matter of religious conviction; for others, it is driven by distrust of those they call the elites. And for others still, efforts to address climate change are seen as a conspiracy to impose world government and a sweeping redistribution of wealth. But all are wary of the Obama administration’s plans to regulate carbon dioxide, a ubiquitous gas, which will require the expansion of government authority into nearly every corner of the economy. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/21/us/politics/21climate.html?src=me&ref=us

Now we’re seeing some right-wingers ramp up their criticism of passenger rail, and of high speed rail in particular. In Wisconsin, Republican gubernatorial candidate Scott Walker has made opposition to HSR a centerpiece of his campaign. Walker put up a microsite attacking the project, NoTrain.com, with a misleading logo featuring a heavy Amtrak-style train and a video where Walker pledges to fight HSR, even returning federal stimulus money Wisconsin won. In Ohio, former Republican Congressman John Kasich is running for governor and criticizing high speed rail as well, in terms similar to those of Scott Walker. http://www.cahsrblog.com/2010/08/right-wing-candidates-attack-hsr/

In that vein, let's take a look at the Adam Smith Foundation.

The organization was established in 2007 by a group of conservative political activists, some of whom were associated with former Missouri Gov. Matthew Blunt (whose father is Roy Blunt, the former House Republican leader currently running for U.S. Senate).

Its guiding spirit is James Harris, a political consultant in the Missouri capital, who says he was driven to found the group by "a need to have right-of-center organizations to counter the aggressive policies of the left, radicals like George Soros, and their ideas that are truly in contradiction to free markets."

I asked him why the foundation got involved in California. "When you look at — no offense — liberal politicians out there running California into the ground, often crazy radical ideas start in California and start moving," he said. (No offense, but the environmental program that Proposition 23 would overturn is a pet project of our Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.) "California has some pretty crazy lawmakers who want to attack families' and individuals' opportunities to provide for themselves, and these are disastrous ideas," Harris continued. "We want to make sure these types of ideas out West do not take hold." I'm not so convinced the foundation's interest is so principled. Until now, it confined itself to a couple of local issues in Missouri. It spent $4,000 last year to support a proposal to kill the state's nonpartisan judge-selection process in favor of one subject to more political wrangling, and $2,500 to defeat a 63-cent tax levy in a local school district. The year before that it raised $30,000, made a single $2,000 grant, and spent $22,500 on professional fees and payments to "independent contractors." The foundation's president, John Elliott, told me the Proposition 23 campaign is its first venture outside Missouri. He said the money for the donation came from "fewer than 10 individuals, not industry or corporations." He said the foundation's involvement in the California campaign was initiated by the donors, not the foundation's four-member board. Who in Missouri could have an interest in killing a California greenhouse gas program? Harris and Elliott both went out of their way, curiously, to mention the effect environmental regulations have on coal. "Anything to do with energy affects Missouri, No. 1 because we rely heavily on coal," Elliott said. Harris observed, "We in Missouri generate 80% of our electricity from coal." http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-hiltzik-20100813,0,1163344.column

The Administration is giving California $2.3 billion to help launch the construction of a highly ambitious rail line that will ultimately connect Sacramento, San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego. As in Florida, this notion has been rattling around for a long time. In 1996 proponents estimated something similar would cost $18 billion. By 2000 the estimate was $25 billion, in 2004 $37 billion and today California officials say it will take $45 billion, a number no one takes seriously. In fact, independent experts believe the outlays will be more than $80 billion. Just making the connection between Anaheim and San Francisco will cost more than $40 billion. Moreover, La-La Land expects private investors to kick in $12 billion because so many people will want to ride the train that it will turn a handy profit. That's about as likely as Fannie Mae ( FNM - news - people ) and Freddie Mac ( FRE - news - people ) making honest money. The passenger estimates assume the line will attract more riders than the bullet trains in Japan, even though Japan's population density is about ten times that of the U.S. http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2010/0830/opinions-steve-forbes-fact-comment-railroading-taxpayer.html

Hate Obama/Birthers

Victoria Jackson is a reliable source of unhinged claims about President Obama -- for example, she has claimed that Obama “bears traits that resemble the anti-Christ” and asserted that “Obama legally kills babies and now he can legally kill Grandmas!” But she really pegged the crazy meter with her July 15 WorldNetDaily column, headlined “The 3 scariest things about Obama”: 1. private army (like Hitler) 2. socialist (like Hitler) 3. media control (like Hitler) http://mediamatters.org/blog/201107150017

Gingrich lashes out at Obama for feeding hungry people. http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2011/may/16/newt-gingrich/newt-gingrich-defends-calling-barack-obama-food-st/

Tattooed evangelist Bradlee Dean, delivering the opening prayer Friday at the Minnesota House of Representatives, said President Obama is not a Christian. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-05-20/bradlee-deans-obama-slur-on-minnesota-house-floor-sparks-uproar/

'Tea party' activists: Do they hate liberals more than they love liberty? A recent ‘tea party’ rally showed lots of anger toward President Obama, but little consistent support for liberty in America. http://www.csmonitor.com/Commentary/Opinion/2010/0423/Tea-party-activists-Do-they-hate-liberals-more-than-they-love-liberty

The racist birther movement is also a fascist movement. http://obrag.org/?p=37084

Local Attorney Wants To Challenge Obama's Citizenship. Ramona Attorney Gary Kreep Wants To Inspect Original Birth Certificate. http://www.10news.com/news/27725906/detail.html

O.C. Republican Party leader slams colleague who sent Obama-chimpanzee email. Marilyn Davenport downplays the controversy over the email, which showed President Obama's face superimposed on an ape, and says she won't resign from the party's central committee. http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-davenport-20110417,0,157428.story

Former U.N. Ambassador John R. Bolton bashes Obama on Libya. Calling the Obama administration's approach to the crisis in Libya 'pathetic,' Bolton casts the president as indecisive, inconsistent and uninterested in foreign policy. Bolton, speaking at the GOP convention in Sacramento, is himself weighing a presidential run in 2012. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-pn-bolton-convention-20110319,0,6261658.story

Broun's press secretary, Jessica Morris, confirmed that the question was indeed, who is going to shoot Obama? "Obviously, the question was inappropriate, so Congressman Broun moved on," she said. However, rather than confronting the questioner or condemning the question, Broun instead acknowledged "frustration" with Obama, according to the Banner-Herald. The paper reports that Broun responded to the stunning inquiry as follows: "The thing is, I know there's a lot of frustration with this president. We're going to have an election next year. Hopefully, we'll elect somebody that's going to be a conservative, limited-government president that will take a smaller, who will sign a bill to repeal and replace Obamacare." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/25/paul-broun-town-hall-who-is-going-to-shoot-obama_n_828047.html

His belief that that day is imminent has led Pray to a group called Oath Keepers, one of the fastest-growing "patriot" organizations on the right. Founded last April by Yale-educated lawyer and ex-Ron Paul aide Stewart Rhodes, the group has established itself as a hub in the sprawling anti-Obama movement that includes Tea Partiers, Birthers, and 912ers. Glenn Beck, Lou Dobbs, and Pat Buchanan have all sung its praises, and in December, a grassroots summit it helped organize drew such prominent guests as representatives Phil Gingrey and Paul Broun, both Georgia Republicans. There are scores of patriot groups, but what makes Oath Keepers unique is that its core membership consists of men and women in uniform, including soldiers, police, and veterans. At regular ceremonies in every state, members reaffirm their official oaths of service, pledging to protect the Constitution—but then they go a step further, vowing to disobey "unconstitutional" orders from what they view as an increasingly tyrannical government. http://motherjones.com/politics/2010/03/oath-keepers

Jacob Volkmann, a fighter with Ultimate Fighting Championship, said in a Jan. 1 interview that he wanted to face off against the president because he disagreed with his health care policy. "Someone's got to knock some sense into that idiot," he said in the interview, which is available on YouTube. "I just don't like what Barack is doing....I know the health care situation is not good, but he's making it worse." http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/136901-mma-fighter-gets-visit-from-secret-service-after-calling-out-obama

"Literally if this question of the natural born citizenship, if this question does not get answered, then I am allowing a tyrannical dictator - the spirit of the anti-Christ, the new world order system that has their plans right this second to collapse the U.S. economy, and we know their plan, the new world order system's plan is to literally destroy humanity," she said. She said "God made sure" that such a message "got out to every single American leader and every leader [now] knows the truth. "He [Obama] has fought it not only for two years, not only has he fought it pre-election but historically all of his connections, every single connection [has been] blacked out." Her description of the day's events was permeated with explanations of her belief that the God of the Bible is being abandoned by America, especially under Obama's rule because of his leanings toward "one-world" endeavors, through the United Nations and other channels. "It's prophesied this new world order system will devastate America and the world, and Satan's plan is to take as many people to hell with him as he can," she said. http://scienceblogs.com/dispatches/2011/01/moron_of_the_day.php#more

Rush Limbaugh tried to rain on Barack Obama's Thanksgiving Day parade, lashing out against a proclamation issued by the president to honor the national holiday and the story behind it. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/25/rush-limbaugh-obama-thanksgiving_n_788515.html

"We're talking about a major political party," he said, "possibly undermining the strength of the country — on purpose, in public, without apology or shame — for no other reason than to give themselves a campaign advantage in 2012." http://motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2010/11/liberal-noise-machine

Among the Kaufman clips ricocheting around the Internets is the above one of her remarks at a July 3 tea party rally in which she says (around the 6:00 mark): “I don’t care how this gets painted by the mainstream media, I don’t care if this shows up on YouTube, because I am convinced the most important thing the Founding Fathers did to ensure me my First Amendment rights was they gave me a Second Amendment. And if ballots don’t work, bullets will.” http://www.postonpolitics.com/2010/11/uproar-death-threats-over-wests-new-staff-chief-and-her-ballots-vs-bullets-remark/

Rush responded, fluidly and without a gram of doubt. "Pay no attention to what Obama says. He means the opposite in most cases. What he says is irrelevant." So the guy to whom all Republicans must kowtow on pain of political death had just laid down a marker that everything Obama said was a lie. What if the White House had in those months in early 2009 put in the rhetorical forefront a story about Rush's tens of millions of listeners, and all politicians who refused to denounce Rush, were effectively saying anything the Chief Constitutional Officer of the United States said was a priori a diabolical lie? When one side breaks the social contract, and the other side makes a virtue of never calling them out on it, the liar always wins. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-11-06/obamas-tax-cut-how-rush-limbaugh-misled-the-country/

McConnell doubled down on his promise to make Obama a one-term president. As he told the Heritage crowd in his prepared remarks, Over the past week, some have said it was indelicate of me to suggest that our top political priority over the next two years should be to deny President Obama a second term in office. But the fact is, if our primary legislative goals are to repeal and replace the health spending bill; to end the bailouts; cut spending; and shrink the size and scope of government, the only way to do all these things it is to put someone in the White House who won't veto any of these things. We can hope the President will start listening to the electorate after Tuesday's election. But we can't plan on it. http://motherjones.com/mojo/2010/11/mcconnell-obama-republican-repeal

The GOP's Dismal New Pledge. We Hop Obama Fails! http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-09-23/pledge-for-america-launched-in-virginia/You%20Call%20This%20a%20Pledge

Someone needs to investigate further CA Gov candidate Jerry Brown, Senator Barbara Boxer, and President Obama's political/radical/fundraiser ties to ultra radical, rabidly anti-war, America-bashing commie leftwing nutjob Jodie Evans, founder of Code Pink. "Jodie Evans is a longtime political ally of Brown’s who worked for his various campaigns and elective offices from the 1970s to the 1990s, culminating when Jodie Evans managed Brown’s failed 1992 campaign for the Democrat’s presidential nomination." 'In the 2000s, Jodie Evans teamed with communist revolutionary Susan ‘Medea’ Benjamin in founding Code Pink, a group that supports Islamic terrorists and works with state sponsors of terrorism against the United States. Jodie Evans and Benjamin are also leading Democratic Party activists; Jodie Evans was also a top fundraiser for President Barack Obama. Jodie Evans also has donated thousands of dollars to the reelection campaign of her fellow California Democrat, Sen. Barbara Boxer.' http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2010/09/steve-lopez-hammering-meg-whitman-on-her-failure-to-vote-could-be-a-winner-for-jerry-brown.html?cid=6a00d8341c630a53ef01348703c413970c#comment-6a00d8341c630a53ef01348703c413970c

More than a dozen tea party protesters gathered at the Embarcadero today and are calling for President Barack Obama to be removed from office. 08/28/2010. http://www.sandiego6.com/mediacenter/local.aspx?videoId=833037@xetv.web.entriq.net&navCatId=5&rss=800

Glenn Beck's Hypocritical Revival. • “We are a country that is headed toward socialism, totalitarianism, beyond your wildest imagination.” • “There is a coup going on. There is a stealing of America… done through the guise of an election.” • “The president is a Marxist... who is setting up a class system.” • “The government is a heroin pusher using smiley-faced fascism to grow the nanny state." • “The health-care bill is reparations. It's the beginning of reparations." • And of course, speaking of President Obama, “I believe this guy is a racist” with “a deep-seated hatred of white people.” http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-08-29/glenn-beck-rally-reaction/?cid=hp:mainpromo1

Ted Nugent, who increasingly lives up to his nickname, "the Motor City Madman," just this past week epitomized the paranoid hate of the president that undergirds much of the protest's super-patriotism. In an interview with a Washington state radio station, Nugent denounced Obama's "Islamic, Muslim, Marxist, communist and socialist agenda." http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-08-27/glenn-beck-sarah-palin-rally-a-martin-luther-king-nightmare/?cid=hp:mainpromo2

Our local Repubnick, Darrel Issa – of North County (the 49th CD) – is in the news again, and he’s in the news again because he continues to play the role of the GOP’s attack dog on the Obama administration. Of all the problems facing this country, what do you think Issa is now charging the White House with? Issa, the ranking Republican on the House of Representatives’ Oversight Committee – and former car alarm king, is charging Obama with being guilty of using propaganda with White House claims of saving jobs and creating new ones with stimulus monies. That’s it. Obama is therefore guilty because the claims cannot be proven, says Issa, and such propaganda is prohibited if taxpayer money is used. http://obrag.org/?p=23632

FACT: Another leadership FAILURE by the coward-liar-idiot-in-chief obozo PLUS, Our Military vs. His civilians in Afghanistan and of course BHO knows nothing?!? FACT: BHO will throw someone under the progressive Bus! AGAIN! OPINION: Go on the VIEW! LMAO. Google. FACT: Real Leadership and being able to have capable Leaders around you, not just anti-fact leftist Journolista "use Racist" progressive Ideologues, is something this community organizer Never learned. FACT: A majority of Americans believes Obama has neglected job creation and economic fears are weighing heavily on progressive Democrats ahead of Nov. 2 mid-term elections, a Reuters-Ipsos poll found. 67% of voters said Obama has not focused enough on creating jobs, with the economy seen as the country's main problem. FACT: The drop in Obama's weekly average was driven by particularly low ratings near the end of the week, with record-low three-day rolling averages of 42% for Aug. 12-14 and Aug. 13-15 polling. Prior to this weekend, Obama's three-day low had been 44%. Additionally, Obama's disapproval rating reached OVER 50% for the first time in the Aug. 13-15 average. Gallup. http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/115283-anti-war-activists-claim-partial-success-for-iraq-combat-pullout

Veteran CBS News White House correspondent Mark Knoller, a fastidious keeper of presidential statistics, has kept count. By his tally, Obama has embarked on nine "vacations" since taking office, bringing his total days off to 48. Some of those trips lasted a day and some, like his Christmas holiday in Hawaii, more than a week. By comparison, Bush had visited his ranch in Crawford, Tex., 14 times at this point in his administration and spent 115 days there. And yes, Democrats let him have it, too, complaining that he was a chronic vacationer. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/21/AR2010082102399.html

Quayle raised more than $1.1 million, with many of the contributions coming from one-time colleagues and friends of his father. Former Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld contributed. In May, Bush and his wife Barbara raised money for Quayle at their home in Houston. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100813/ap_on_el_ho/us_quayle_s_quest

Is Dan Quayle's Son's "Obama" Rip Serious? http://motherjones.com/mojo/2010/08/quayle-son-obama-worst-president-history-arizona

Violence

in Washington, D.C., another sort of commemoration was taking place at the foot of the Washington Monument. There, a couple of thousand right-wing gun-rights advocates gathered to hear from a roster of speakers, several of whom spewed pure venom, including Larry Pratt, president of Gun Owners of America, and Rep. Paul Broun, R-Ga. From my original report on the gathering: Broun, a Republican, sees civil war looming on the horizon. "Fellow patriots, we have a lot of domestic enemies of the Constitution, and they're right down the Mall, in the Congress of the United States -- and right down Independence Avenue in the White House that belongs to us," Broun told the crowd. "It's not about my ability to hunt, which I love to do. It's not about the ability for me to protect my family and property against criminals, which we have the right to do. But it's all about us protecting ourselves from a tyrannical government of the United States." Then there's Pratt: "I look around: it's so good to see all these terrorists out here," Pratt said. "Janet Napolitano, she figured, as governor of Arizona, that we didn't have a border problem, but she knows who the real enemy is. Ha, ha, ha, ha. And Bill Clinton's been runnin' cover for her, too. Watch out how you guys speak out there, you know, words can have consequences. Remember Oklahoma City? Yeah, I do. And I also remember the Waco barbecue that your attorney general gave us. Thanks a lot...We're in a war. The other side knows they're at war, because they started it. They're comin' for our freedom, for our money, for our kids, for our property. They're comin' for everything because they're a bunch of socialists." http://www.alternet.org/news/149460/how_the_right%27s_rhetoric_fueled_the_actions_of_arizona%27s_mass_murderer/?page=1

"I don't think we should rush to speculate," said Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.). "It's probably giving him too much credit to ascribe a coherent political philosophy to him. We just have to acknowledge that there are mentally unstable people in this country. Who knows what motivates them to do what they do? Then they commit terrible crimes like this." http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-0110-vitriol-20110110,0,7572248.story

Mike Vanderboegh, a former 1990s militia leader from Alabama, enouraged readers of his blog to throw bricks through the windows of Democratic offices during the debate over President Obama's health care bill last spring. One of the offices attacked was that of Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, who was shot at a rally in a Tucson supermarket today. "In the days that followed [Vanderboegh's post], glass windows and doors were shattered at local Democratic Party offices and the district offices of House Democrats from Arizona to Kansas to New York. At least 10 Democratic lawmakers reported death threats, incidents of harassment or vandalism at their offices over the past week, and the FBI and Capitol Police are offering lawmakers increased protection. Local Democratic Party officials in New York have called for Vanderboegh's arrest, believing he is implicated in the vandalism in Rochester, but Vanderboegh said he has not yet been questioned by any law enforcement authorities. Vanderboegh was unapologetic in a 45-minute telephone interview with The Washington Post early Thursday. He said he believes throwing bricks through windows sends a warning to Democratic lawmakers that the health-care reform legislation they passed Sunday has caused so much unrest that it could result in a civil war. "The federal government should not have the ability to command us to buy something that it decides we should buy," Vanderboegh said. The government, he added, has "absolutely no idea the number of alienated who feel that their backs are to the wall are out here . . . who are not only willing to resist this law to the very end of their lives, but are armed and are capable of making such resistance possible and perhaps even initiating a civil war."... He said his call for people to throw bricks is "both good manners and it's also a moral duty to try to warn people." http://motherjones.com/mojo/2011/01/giffordss-office-was-vandalized-followers-former-militia-leader

U.S. District Judge John Roll, one of those shot and killed in Tucson, had ruled in 2009 that a lawsuit by illegal immigrants against an Arizona rancher could go forward. Afterward, U.S. Marshal David Gonzales said that talk radio shows fanned the flames and prompted hundreds of calls to the judge, some of them threatening. "They said, 'We should kill him. He should be dead,'" Gonzales told the Arizona Republic. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-01-08/gabrielle-giffords-shooting-dont-blame-sarah-palin/

Palin's 'Vitriol' Cited As Possible Factor In Arizona Tragedy. http://www.npr.org/2011/01/09/132764367/congresswoman-shot-in-arizona

Giffords had been target of violent threats. Asked by the New York Post whether his daughter had any enemies, Giffords's father replied: "The whole tea party." http://news.yahoo.com/s/yblog_thelookout/20110108/ts_yblog_thelookout/giffords-had-been-target-of-violent-threats

In keeping with the Tea Party’s modus operandi, which is to noisily rage against the perceived status quo, Popaditch’s people changed all that, injecting the environment with vitriol, profanity and menace. One large young man hollered, “Get out of here, you fucking faggots!” at Filner’s bunch. Others shouted, “Commies!” and “Pinkos!” Eventually, the Tea Partiers, led by Popaditch, chased Filner and his group out of the hall and into the lobby and backed Filner against a concrete pillar, their chanting growing louder and madder. “Don’t tread on me, Bob! Don’t tread on me!” one man yelled. Popaditch confronted Filner directly, irked about an attack ad that had aired late in the campaign. http://www.sdcitybeat.com/sandiego/article-8384-not-suitable-for-kids.html

Tea Party Thugs

This election season, a man was arrested for hitting a protester at a rally for Washington GOP Senate candidate Dino Rossi, a man stomped on the head of a woman at a campaign event for Kentucky GOP Senate candidate Rand Paul, local police wrestled to the ground a Democratic man at an event for Rep. Eric Cantor (R), Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.) received suspicious powder to his office, biker supporters of Florida GOP congressional candidate Allen West harassed a Democratic tracker and Alaska GOP Senate candidate Joe Miller's private security force handcuffed and detained a reporter. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/10/28/rise-far-right-violence-elections_n_775326.html

A Tea Party supporter admitted to stepping on the head of a liberal protester—giving her a concussion—outside the Kentucky Senate debate last night. http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-10-26/rand-paul-jack-conway-get-personal-at-kentucky-senate-debate/?cid=hp:mainpromo2

Activist stomped outside Rand Paul-Jack Conway debate; Paul supporter Tim Profitt apologizes. http://voices.washingtonpost.com/44/2010/10/woman-stomped-outside-rand-pau.html

the most disturbing thing about Nick Popaditch, and most dangerous, is that he views the world and its politics through his military service. He seems to believe that military force is the answer to all of our problems throughout the world. He would like to see a tougher approach to Iran and North Korea—we need to rattle more sabers and talk tough. His message: “America will always be able to out tough you and out fight you!” Like dropping bombs is the answer for everything. As if that will make us more secure. http://obrag.org/?p=23300

Bomb Bomb Bomb Iran

"Once that uranium, once those fuel rods are very close to the reactor, certainly once they're in the reactor, attacking it means a release of radiation, no question about it. So if Israel is going to do anything against Bushehr it has to move in the next eight days." Nuke Nut John Dolton Bolton http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/17/israel-has-eight-days-to-_n_684970.html

Worship of Wall Street

Paul Ryan’s Ayn Rand Problem. http://swampland.time.com/2011/06/03/paul-ryans-ayn-rand-problem/

Happy days came back Friday to Spring Hill, Tenn., when General Motors announced it would rehire 483 laid-off workers to build four-cylinder engines. On hand to cheer the news: Three Republican lawmakers who opposed the bailout that saved GM. As part of its $50 billion bankruptcy arranged by the Obama administration, GM shuttered the Spring Hill plant's assembly line last year, shedding 2,000 jobs in the process, but kept building four-cylinder engines. The new plan calls for $483 million in spending to upgrade the engine line, pending a deal on state incentives. The irony of the Republican lawmakers' presence wasn't lost on the workers who attended the ceremony; they booed Tennessee Republican Bob Corker, and one UAW official made clear from the stage that the union still remembered which politicians had voted to rescue Wall Street but opposed an auto industry bailout. http://jalopnik.com/5641416/republicans-hail-jobs-from-gm-bailout-they-opposed

Of all the statewide candidates doing well this year, I consider Ohio's Rob Portman, the Republican leading in the open U.S. Senate race, one of the more surprising. While Dems make some efforts to tie various GOP candidates to Bush/Cheney, the task with Portman is altogether different. Portman didn't just occasionally vote for the Bush agenda in Congress, Portman's most recent experience in government was serving as Bush's budget director. When we consider an era in which the Republicans turned huge surpluses into massive deficits, Portman was at the center of the policymaking process. For that matter, he was Bush's trade rep, in a state where Bush's trade policies aren't exactly popular. "Rob Portman is the No. 1 George Bush look-alike in the country," Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) said this week. "I just can't believe the voters are going to choose the candidate who more than anybody else in the whole country represents what got us into this situation." I can believe it; polls show Portman ahead, despite his background of failure. But what I find the most interesting is Portman's response to the criticism. After a tour here of the Andersons Inc., a diversified grain, rail and retail company that is a mainstay in northwestern Ohio, Mr. Portman dismissed suggestions that his time in the Bush White House and his image as a trusted adviser to the former president would be a significant liability or that voters would even be concerned about the past. "What the people in this plant want to know is what you are going to do for me going forward," Mr. Portman said. "That is all they care about, and frankly that's what voters care about." "The world has moved on," he added. "Maybe the Democrats haven't." http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2010_08/025405.php

Newt Gingrich has proposed a far more promising, 12-point, alternative economic recovery plan that should receive more attention. Gingrich recognizes that America suffers from the second-highest corporate tax rate in the industrialized world, close to 40% counting federal and state levies. The E.U. has reduced their average corporate tax rate from 38% to 24%. Germany and Canada have reduced their corporate tax rate to 19%, with Canada's soon going to 15%. India and China have lower corporate tax rates as well. This leaves American companies at an enormous disadvantage. Gingrich's plan would lower the 35% federal corporate tax rate to the 12.5% rate adopted by Ireland 20 years ago, which raised that longtime poor country from the second-lowest per capita income in the E.U. to the second highest. The U.S. Treasury Department calculates that Ireland raises more corporate tax revenue as a percent of gross domestic product with this 12.5% rate than we do with our 35% federal rate. Gingrich's proposal would also reduce the 25% income tax rate paid by middle class families to 15%, which would create an effective 15% flat tax for 90% of Americans. He would abolish the capital gains tax, which involves double taxation of savings and investment, reduce spending to balance the budget, as he led Congress to do in the 1990s, and open production of more oil, natural gas, nuclear power and alternative energy sources, providing a reliable, low-cost energy supply to power the American economy. Gingrich's proposal is a prescription for another economic boom. http://www.forbes.com/2009/05/29/obama-gingrich-recession-opinions-contributors-stimulus.html

Nevertheless, with great fanfare the Administration announced last year that it would shovel out $8 billion to help fund several high-speed rail corridors around the country. While that's seemingly small change by today's government standards, transportation officials understand that these appropriations are but a down payment on massive amounts of money yet to come. Traditionally, once a pork barrel scheme is started, nothing in heaven or on Earth is likely to stop it. Like barnacles on a ship, too many vested interests will glom onto it and fight to protect it. Steve Forbes http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2010/0830/opinions-steve-forbes-fact-comment-railroading-taxpayer.html

Hatred of California

News flash: Madison, County, Ill. is no longer the nation's worst place for corporations to find themselves in court. California took top honors in the American Tort Reform's annual "Judicial Hellholes" list, an unashamedly pro-defendant look at the nation's judicial system. The Golden State won for the welcoming stance its courts take toward consumer class actions -- particularly against food companies -- and rampant lawsuits targeting small businesses over disability-access rules. A dozen or so law firms, many of them veterans of the tobacco litigation jackpot, have filed 75 class actions against food companies in California and similar cases are running almost one a week, ATRA reports. Many involve the same plaintiffs and take advantage of the state's stringent laws to target companies like Chobani and Trader Joe's with claims that they mislabeled products -- for example, using the term "evaporated cane juice" instead of "sugar." Critics may say, with justification, that ATRA is financed by businesses with a strong profit motive to cut down on such litigation. But these lawsuits aren't without cost: ATRA says California consumers paid at least part of the cost of $33.5 billion in settlements in 2013 alone. And, as I have reported elsewhere, studies cast strong doubt on the idea that consumers get anything of value out of class actions supposedly brought in their name. http://mediamatters.org/blog/2013/12/19/forbes-hypes-still-ridiculous-judicial-hellhole/197355

Corruption

Issa issues. Congressional bloodhound should get a whiff of himself. http://www.sdcitybeat.com/sandiego/article-7885-issa-issues.html

libertarian

Farmer Boy

Here are some pages from the book "Farmer Boy" by Laura Ingalls Wilder Author of the "Little House" Books.

There was a story on NPR Afghan Mission Has Two Goals: Security, Farming that made me think of these pages.

Rose Wilder Lane, Laura's daughter was an early libertarian.

The band came marching down the street, and they all ran along beside it. The flag was gloriously waving in front, then came the buglers blowing and the fifers tootling and the drummer rattling the drumsticks on the drum. Up the street and down the street went the band, with all the boys following it, and then it stopped in the Square by the brass cannons.

Hundreds of people were there, crowding to watch.

The cannons sat on their haunches, pointing their long barrels upward. the band kept on playing. Two men kept shouting, "Stand back! Stand back!" and other men were pouring black powder into the cannon's muzzles and pushing it down with wads of cloth on long rods.

The iron rods had two handles, and two men pushed and pulled on them, driving the black powder down the brass barrels. Then all the boys ran to pull grass and weed along the railroad tracks. They carried them by armfuls to the cannons, and the men crowded the weeds into the cannons' muzzles and drove them down with the long rods.

A bonfire was burning by the railroad tracks, and long iron rods were heating in it.

When all the weeds and grass had been packed tight against the powder in the cannons, a man took a little more powder in his hand and carefully filled the two little touchholes in the barrels. Now everyone was shouting:

"Stand back! Stand back!"

Mother took hold of Almanzo's arm and made him come away with her. He told her:

"Aw, Mother, they're only loaded with powder and weeds. I won't get hurt, Mother. I'll be careful, honest." But she made him come away from the cannons.

Two men took the long iron rods from the fire. Everyone was still, watching. Standing as far behind the cannons as they could, the two men stretched out the rods and touched their red hot tips to the touchholes. A little flame like a candle flame flickered up from the powder. The little flames stood there burning; nobody breathed. Then - BOOM!

The cannons leaped backward, the air was full of flying grass and weeds. Almanzo ran with all the other boys to feel the warm muzzles of the cannons. Everybody was exclaiming about what a loud noise they had made.

"That's the noise that made the Redcoats run!" Mr. Paddock said to Father.

"Maybe," Father said, tugging his beard. "But it was the muskets that won the Revolution. And don't forget it was the axes and plows that made this country."

"That's so, come to think of it," Mr. Paddock said.

Independence Day was over. The cannons had been fired, and there was nothing more to do but hitch up the horses and drive home to do the chores. That night when they were going to the house with milk, Almanzo asked Father:

"Father, how was it axes and plows that made this country? Didn't we fight England for it?"

"We fought for Independence, son," Father said. "But all the land our forefathers had was a little strip of country, here between the mountains and the ocean. All the way from here west was Indian country, and Spanish and French and English country. It was farmers that took all that country and made it America."

"How?" Almanzo asked.

"Well, son, the Spaniards were soldiers, and high-and-mighty gentlemen that only wanted gold. And the French were fur-traders, wanting to make quick money. And England was busy fighting wars. But we were farmers, son; we wanted the land. It was farmers that went over the mountains, and cleared the land, and settled it, and farmed it, and hung on to their farms.

"This country goes three thousand miles west, now. It goes 'way out beyond Kansas, and beyond the Great American Desert, over mountains bigger than these mountains, and down to the Pacific Ocean. It's the biggest country in the world, and it was the farmers who took all that country and made it America, son. Don't you ever forget that."

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