Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Why The Good Guys Lose

How Can Dems Be Losing to These Idiots? - The Daily Beast:

...But high-ranking Democrats collectively need to perform the following exercise. Sit down together in a room. Distribute index cards. Let each of them write down five adjectives they associate with the GOP, adjectives they not only believe themselves but hear from constituents. Because the crowd has wisdom that the individual does not, take those that get the most mentions and turn them into attack on the GOP’s essence that will put Republican candidates on the defensive. Maybe that’s when our campaigns will change.
Encapsulate the GOP essence? Simple: "Republicans Are Evil."  Push that long and hard and hope someone asks for an example because there are literally thousands of examples of GOP evil. I'd love to have the money to run that ad campaign.

Polling

HUFFPOLLSTER: How The Senate Polls Could Be Wrong:

HOW POLLS COULD ERR - With less than a week remaining before Election Day, HuffPost's poll tracking model continues to report roughly the same forecast for control of the U.S. Senate as it has for the past two weeks: The polling averages show Republicans leading at least nominally in enough states to gain a 53-seat majority. The margins remain close enough, however, that the overall probability of a Republican majority is just 63 percent as of this writing. In other words, polling shows the Senate battle leaning Republican, but there is still a real potential that Democrats could hang on due to late shifts or polling errors. So how could these polling averages be wrong?...

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Trussing The Turtle

Addicting Info – That Moment When Mitch McConnell Put The Final Nail In His Political Coffin:

If Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) loses his seat to Democratic challenger Alison Grimes, pundits may point to this moment as the one that put the final nail in the Turtle’s political coffin:

When a reporter asked McConnell whether he planned on continuing his efforts to privatize Social Security, McConnell made a pitifully blatant and pathetically self-serving attempt to dodge the question:

“I’m not announcing what the agenda would be in advance.”...

Comment Of The Day: Old School Employer Edition

American Exceptionalism - Esquire

Mark Whitney · Top Commenter · President at NCTI of Colorado

To me this is the money quote: "But we can still make money out of it -
and McDonald's does, too. Otherwise, it wouldn't be in Denmark."
McDonald's is making money in Denmark. Any business that is turning a profit will stay open.
The problem here in the "Exceptional Merica", is that the sociopaths here don't give a f^%k about the employees here.
I have said it before, but I will say again: I am a small business owner here in Colorado. My yearly income for my business is less than 1 million. My lowest paid employee is making $15.00 per hour. I offer health and dental to all of my full time employees. I my taxable income is 6 figures. I could take home more by paying my employees less, but I want everyone who works for me to make a living wage and not have to worry about making ends meet. More importantly I don't want them to have to apply for government assistance. This is my social contract as a business owner. I would be hauled out a boardroom in chains if I worked for Walmart. How much is enough for these people?

High Minimum Works In Denmark

Living Wages, Rarity for U.S. Fast-Food Workers, Served Up in Denmark - NYTimes.com:

On a recent afternoon, Hampus Elofsson ended his 40-hour workweek at a Burger King and prepared for a movie and beer with friends. He had paid his rent and all his bills, stashed away some savings, yet still had money for nights out.

That is because he earns the equivalent of $20 an hour — the base wage for fast-food workers throughout Denmark and two and a half times what many fast-food workers earn in the United States...

Brownback Sinking

The Great Kansas Tea Party Disaster | Rolling Stone:

...As a senator and a failed presidential candidate, Brownback was already one of the nation's most prominent social conservatives, "God's Senator," in the words of a 2006 Rolling Stone profile. But Brownback turned out to be even more radical when it came to economic policy. In 2012, he enacted the largest package of tax cuts in Kansas history, essentially transforming his state into a lab experiment for extreme free-market ideology. The results (disastrous) have reduced the governor to making appearances at grim strip malls like this one in a desperate attempt to salvage his re-election bid...

Is There Something Wrong...

...with this headline? Seattle man shoots dead daughter and granddaughter before killing himself | US news | theguardian.com

Monday, October 27, 2014

A Great Idea In VA Health Care

Senator Mark Begich - Esquire:

...When I ran for office, one of the issues I talked about was called the Heroes Health Card. And it was a very simple concept. The idea was, Look, if you’re a veteran anywhere in Alaska, you’ll be able to show this card and get access to our Indian Health Service clinics. Which are all over the state, and they’re run by our tribes here. And very successful. If you ask CMS and any of the health care monitors, they’ll tell you our health care system is the best. And, so we have great quality care in very remote areas. Example: Nome, Alaska—$180 million dollar hospital up there, native hospital. Beautiful hospital. But veterans up there would have to fly to Anchorage or Seattle to get care. Because we have no veteran’s hospital! And so we said, 'Wait a second, here. Why can’t these veterans, native or non-native, walk across the street, get their care, if they want, and we reimburse them?' Oh— Everyone said, 'Bad idea. Can’t be done.' I actually have a memo that they wrote! And so, I took General Shinseki—Secretary Shinseki—to rural Alaska, out into the villages, and I had him sit with some veterans. And it wasn’t long after that that we got the Health and Human Services Department and the VA to sit down and write out a memorandum of understanding between those guys and our tribes. We have over twenty-six tribes now. And they deliver care everywhere in Alaska to any veteran who wants it. So what’s happening? Two-and-a-half years ago, we were able to put a line item in the VA budget, specifically for this program. Now, think about that. That was two-and-a-half years ago. Right? When no one was yet talking about the VA. Go in the records of the VA Committee I sit on, or floor statements I’ve made, I talk about this all the time. And no one paid attention! And we said, 'This is a solution to create access...'
Funny. No one talks about the Indian Health Service as a model of socialism, a successful one.

The End Of The Liberal Is Neigh

Netvibes: "Apocalypse Now: Seriously, It's Time for a Major Rethink About Liberal and Progressive Politics"

... In that light, I have started describing myself as a pragmatic apocalyptic. What that means is, there are huge problems on the horizon, likely severe crises ahead, and there is at present no light at the end of the tunnel. Let's stop fantasizing about all the ways our world should be when there isn't the remotest chance of those ideas coming to fruition
anytime soon, if ever. Let's focus on what can be done, on building local and regional strength, on developing thousands of new organizers and fewer think-tankers, and bringing people together in ways they feel supported, as opposed to on their own, with no one at their backs. 
Great. You go first for a change. How about stopping demeaning all Southerners instead of the mouth- breathing right-wing ammosexual freaks you're really aiming at?

Ammosexual Neutrality

Gun extremists’ ghastly new low: A fight over “open carry” turns vulgar and scary - Salon.com:

...Never mind the fact that several days before our conversation, Open Carry Texas posted photos of themselves marching into Staples with semiautomatic rifles and a Texas flag. When “neutral” means almost anyone can openly carry loaded guns into your place of business, remaining “neutral” is in effect siding with the gun extremists. That’s how frightening this debate has become.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Rapers And Abusers Are US

More ‘Sons of Guns’ stars arrested: Pro-gun reality TV family charged with child abuse:

Another family from the reality TV series Sons of Guns is facing charges of child abuse...

Armor To Collect Fines

Wisconsin Sheriff Sends Military Armored Vehicle To Collect Fines From 75-year-old Man | Crooks and Liars:

A 75-year-old Wisconsin man is considering filing a federal civil rights lawsuit after officials in Marathon County sent an armored military to collect fines that resulted from a property dispute...

No Escape From NY

Quarantined nurse knocks Ebola policy - CNN.com:

Kaci Hickox, a nurse placed under mandatory quarantine in New Jersey, went on CNN on Sunday and criticized the "knee-jerk reaction by politicians" to Ebola, saying "to quarantine someone without a better plan in place, without more forethought, is just preposterous."

Hickox, an epidemiologist who was working to help treat Ebola patients in Sierra Leone, has tested negative twice for Ebola and does not have symptoms, she said...

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Ebola Freak Out Boogey

The Rude Pundit: The Rude Pundit's Chicken Soup for the Ebola'd Soul:

...They're not homogenous down there. There's a lot of people in the South just like the Rude Pundit's friends. And we're not homogenous up here. We are filthy with religion, too.

But here's the difference, the reason that we're not freaking out. Our lawmakers, for the most part, know that science, not Jesus, shows us we shouldn't freak out. The people, for the most part, think that, too (and, besides, it's a helluva lot easier to go about your daily routine than change it up). So the pressure will be on us to panic. People who profit from such things will attempt to assure that it does. And maybe you will be able to wipe the smirk off our smug faces as we board our windows after another half dozen cases...
I have neither seen, nor heard, nor read of anyone "down" here freaking out. It's been decades since anyone tried to "Jesus" me and I've never heard Christian music played in a public space, though that would be a break from the never ending goo of elevator music.

On The Latest Shooting

UNARMED Hero Teacher Crushes NRA Talking Points, Courageously Stops WA School Shooter (Video) - Firebrand Progressives:

...The shooting could have been much worse, as Fryberg was reportedly reloading his “rapid fire” pistol and was poised to shoot a few more people. But during the time he paused to reload, a courageous teacher approached Fryberg and put a stop to it.

The teacher, who was initially described as being a “lunch lady” but was later identified as first year social studies instructor Megan Silberberger, grabbed Fryberg’s arms while he was reloading. And then the gun went off, striking and killing Fryberg. It is unclear if he intentionally shot himself or if the shot was a result of Silberberger’s intervention. But at any rate, the tragedy was over, and this brave teacher surely prevented it from being a bigger tragedy...

Friday, October 24, 2014

Mitch The Clot

George Will, master troll: Why his new screed about dignity and the GOP cannot be serious - Salon.com:

...Will is correct about how the Founders designed the Senate: to be the forger of consensus, to cool the majoritarian impulses of the House. There are numerous veto points blocking a bill’s passage from drafting to a final vote on the floor. In order to make this sort of thing work, though, senators have to work in good faith; the minority party won’t abuse those veto points. It will only draw on them in extreme circumstances. Mitch McConnell is an incredibly consequential figure in Senate history already: He exposed the flaws in the Senate’s design. He recognized that a minority party could act in bad faith and get away with it. There is no one more to blame for the breakdown of the Senate than Obama-era Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

McConnell made a decision at the very beginning of the Obama presidency that he, and his conference, would filibuster every significant piece of legislation that the Obama administration proposed, before even hearing out the merits. He and his party would then criticize the president for refusing to work with Republicans. This, in turn, would give the administration a reputation for being partisan and ineffective. This plan was as cynical as it gets, was in purely bad faith, and it worked...

He;s Still Dead-- They're Still Free

Cops' Killing of Homeless Preacher to Cost Denver $4.6 Million | The Smirking Chimp:

Surveillance video shows the large, open booking room of Denver’s brand new Downtown Detention Center, shortly after 3:30 a.m. on July 9, 2010. It shows Denver County sheriff’s deputies grabbing and killing an unarmed, shoeless black man in a public place for no good reason. More than four years later, an all-white, seven-member federal jury has now delivered a verdict against the cops and the city of Denver. On October 14, the jury found that the cops had acted with “evil motive” toward Rev. Marvin Booker, and the city is ordered to pay $4.6 million to the victim’s family...

Thursday, October 23, 2014

SC GOP Crook Goes Down

South Carolina house speaker pleads guilty in ethics case, to resign | Reuters:

South Carolina House of Representatives Speaker Bobby Harrell pleaded guilty on Thursday to criminal ethics charges and agreed to immediately resign from the legislature.

Harrell, a Republican who became speaker in 2005, pleaded guilty to six counts that included using campaign funds for personal expenses, misconduct in office and false reporting, in a case that has laid low a key figure in the state Republican Party...