Monday, April 20, 2015

Foot Shooting Voters

Why do blue-collar workers vote against their economic interests? | TheHill:

...There is however, no question in the minds of critics as to what is going on. More ominously, for those who seek to preserve democratic traditions, this latest move is one more indicator of the invidious impact that money on the political process.

It seems evident to the outsider that Republicans feel completely comfortable in voting against the interests of their constituents because they know they have either short memories or no memory at all...

The Empire Struck Back

George Lucas Is Building Affordable Housing For The Poor:

After his wealthy neighbors opposed his effort to build another studio, George Lucas decided to build affordable housing for the poor instead with his own money. Now they’re enraged....

Actual Welfare Spending

How welfare recipients spend their money: It's not steak and seafood.:

Red-state lawmakers have been on a rather unnecessary crusade lately to stop welfare and food stamp recipients from spending their government aid on luxuries like cruises and supermarket king crab legs. This has, thankfully, led to some discussion about how low-income families actually use their money—which is to say, not all that differently than the rest of us. (More of their budgets generally go to food, because people have to eat...)

Sunday, April 19, 2015

The Beginning Of The End...

...of the Drug War?



Obama Signals Support For Changing Course In Federal War On Medical Marijuana:

In an interview that will air for the first time this weekend as part of CNN's latest installment of its medical marijuana documentary series "WEED 3," President Barack Obama signals support for medical marijuana and for rolling back the federal government's war on drugs...

Rovian Lynch Error

Rove Admits Holding Up Lynch Nomination Was A Mistake, But Defends It Anyway | Crooks and Liars:

Karl Rove did his best to try to have his cake and eat it too when it comes to the Republicans holding up the confirmation of Loretta Lynch for Attorney General on this weekend's Fox News Sunday. Rove knows full well the optics are awful and damaging to his party, but he couldn't help himself with wanting to take the opportunity to attack the Democrats on the issue of abortion...

Clinton Supporter Tells Why

We're for Hillary and Here's Why�|�Joseph C. Wilson:

...After President Obama's election in 2008, there was a widespread feeling that it would mark an end to unseemly partisan nastiness. We were subjected to its rancor, and we hoped, too. Unfortunately, it soon became obvious that the wish for a post-partisan presidency will always be fanciful so long as the radical right-wing, backed with the immense financial resources of special interests, will target and demonize anyone who disagrees with it. They tried to do it to President Clinton, and they have tried to do the same thing to President Obama in the most vulgar and bigoted ways. They will do it again to whoever is the Democratic candidate. Hillary knows that. But she also knows that if we are ever to make this a better nation and society, we must stand up for true American values for progress against these destructive forces. She is strong enough to do so. And as president she will provide the seasoned, smart and tough leadership the United States will need to face the challenges of this rapidly changing world. She is by far the most qualified and trustworthy person to protect our national security interests and to create a better American future. Hillary stood with us, as she has stood with so many over the years, and we are proud to stand with her for our country now.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

LEO Extrordinaire

Ohio Cop Refuses to Resort to Deadly Force: 'I Wanted to Be Absolutely Sure' - NBC News.com:

A rookie Ohio cop is being praised for "great restraint and maturity" after he held off using deadly force against a double murder suspect who charged at him, his police chief said.

In a confrontation Thursday with a man accused of killing his fiancee and his best friend, New Richmond Police Officer Jesse Kidder is heard on his body-camera video yelling, "No man, I'm not going to do it!" and ordering the suspect to get down on the ground.

The suspect rushes toward him shouting, "Shoot me, shoot me!"

"Back up!" screams Kidder, holding his gun out. The man finally crumples to the ground just feet away from the officer in the video taken in the Cincinnati suburb of Elsmere, Kentucky...

Obama The Brawler

With 2 years left, Obama getting tough on critics | News24:

Just as Congress is hitting something of a bipartisan stride on such issues as Medicare, Iran and trade, President Barack Obama and his White House team have decided to go after their Republican critics, picking fights and scornfully calling them out by name...

Friday, April 17, 2015

Defining Warren

Elizabeth Warren's Comprehensive Wall Street Reform Agenda | Crooks and Liars:

...The people who refer to Elizabeth Warren as anti-business just don’t get it. What she is in reality is anti-predator, anti-cheater, anti-monopolist, and anti-cronyism. If you have a fair system that regulates those market and competition-stifling things, then it helps the vast majority of businesses to fairly compete. What this speech reminds us is that Elizabeth Warren is a pro-business, pro-market progressive...

No GOPer Critique Allowed

Lawmaker expelled from GOP caucus for post about budgets - Houston Chronicle:

A Michigan lawmaker says she's no longer welcome at House Republicans' closed-door caucus meetings after criticizing legislation on Facebook...

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Mechanical Martyrs

Michigan Mechanic Won’t Serve The Queers, Time To Crank Up The Old GoFundMe | Wonkette:

...Anyway, guess it’s time to set up his GoFundMe, so he can become a martyrdom whore and get rich off the sweet, luscious bigot cash that is now apparently the prize you get for bitching and moaning about how much you hate queers. America!...

Comment Of The Day: Issa Edition

The Ghost Of Undead Darrell Issa: Today In Imaginary HRC Scandals

Kent Anderson · Top Commenter · Wayne State University

Did you really think we'd go long without hearing from Congressman Grand Theft Auto? "If we can't impeach Obama, we can impede Hilary." Give itup, Darrel.

Clinton Calling For Reform

Brent Budowsky: Hillary lifts populist spirits | TheHill:

In Iowa on Tuesday, Hillary Clinton lifted the spirits of progressive populists and appealed to a majority of voters by vowing to lead a battle against the corrupting influence of big money in government and politics, and speaking with faith and conviction about how this influence causes profound unfairness in the American economy.

Clinton is making political reform one of the cornerstone issues in her campaign for the White House. She has begun a frontal assault against the widely unpopular Supreme Court decision in the Citizens United case, which would allow the wealthiest Americans to buy elections and dominate policymaking in Washington by spending unlimited money, often in secret, on political campaigns...

Some Honesty From A Former Cop

When Cops Cry Wolf - Frank Serpico - POLITICO Magazine:

...If you think that what happened in North Charleston is a unique case, it is not. Only recently, in another case, a policewoman in Pennsylvania first Tasered a black man, then shot him twice in the back as he lay face down in the snow. She was chasing him for an expired parking sticker. There were five seconds between shots. She said she feared for her life. It was captured on her own Taser camera.

I’ve been saying this for a long time, ever since I spoke before the Knapp Commission investigating corruption in the NYPD more than 40 years ago: Unless we create an atmosphere where the crooked cop fears the honest cop, and not the other way around, the system will never change. Unless honesty is rewarded more often than corruption, the police will lose credibility altogether. I wrote a letter to President Bill Clinton in 1994 addressing this very issue, saying that honest cops have never been rewarded, and maybe there ought to be a medal for them. He wrote back, but nothing changed.

Now, in the era of citizen videotaping, police credibility is at stake as never before. If enough testi-lying is uncovered, then who is going to believe the police even when they are telling the truth? They will be seen as crying wolf...

Clinton Hearts Warren

Clinton Touts Warren: ‘A Special Kind Of Leader’ � CBS DC:

...Writing in tribute to Warren’s placement on Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People list, Clinton touted the Massachusetts Democrat for never hesitating “to hold powerful people’s feet to the fire...”

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Uh Oh, They're Catching On

Watch As This 'Tea Party Patriot' Realizes That Voting GOP In 2016 Could Cost Him His Obamacare | Crooks and Liars:

..."But you know, the Republican Party, they haven't done nothing for me, man. Nothing," he remarked. "So, I'm leaning toward voting for Hillary unless something major comes up. I don't trust the Republicans anymore because they're wanting to repeal the Obamacare. And I don't want them to do that, man, because then I'll have to go to work again. My life's already planned out..."

The Red Ink Menace

Whatever happened to the big, bad federal deficit? ( video) - CSMonitor.com:

Whatever happened to the big, bad federal deficit? You know, the red ink menace that was supposed to devour America’s fiscal future?...

Injustice In Atlanta

The Atlanta Schools Verdict: Sometimes The Judge Loses It Entirely:

...As always, Diane Ravitch is the go-to source for all things standardized and corporatized in public education policy. And she makes a further relevant point, as well.

In addition, all of the convicted educators lost their license, their pensions, and five years of compensation. If only all those bankers who nearly destroyed the economy in 2008 had been dealt with as harshly. But they were "too big to fail..."

Nonsense From The Rich

5 libertarian oligarchs who made fortunes off the government they want to destroy - Salon.com:

...Perkins’ defense of his initial comments on Bloomberg betray the shallowness of his libertarian thought. He insisted that his fellow tycoons are “job creators,” despite the fact that they’ve been paying very low taxes for more than a decade – and there are no jobs!

Perkins also insisted that society should “let the rich do what the rich do” and enjoy the expanded job opportunities that will flow from that. But on Wall Street the rich were allowed to do what the rich do and it robbed the economy of millions of jobs and trillions in wealth. Apple and other big tech manufacturers were allowed to “do what they do” and hundreds of thousands of jobs were shipped overseas...

Fox Jers Have Flog Off

“You’re a 10-foot-tall crybaby”: Bill O’Reilly destroyed by another Fox host over “War on Christianity” claims - Salon.com:

On “The O’Reilly Factor” last night, Bill O’Reilly tried to browbeat Fox Business host John Stossel for claiming that Christianity is not under attack in America today — needless to say, it did not go as O’Reilly planned.

Stossel came out swinging, acknowledging that while there are some issues that Christians can legitimately complain about, when it comes to O’Reilly’s “War on Christianity,” the Fox host is “just a 10-foot-tall crybaby.” After noting that Christians are not being killed on the streets of America for professing their faith, O’Reilly could only reply, “No, not yet...”

Brooks Has A Thought

The Moral Bucket List - NYTimes.com:

...It occurred to me that there were two sets of virtues, the r�sum�virtues and the eulogy virtues. The r�sum�virtues are the skills you bring to the marketplace. The eulogy virtues are the ones that are talked about at your funeral — whether you were kind, brave, honest or faithful. Were you capable of deep love?

We all know that the eulogy virtues are more important than the r�sum�ones. But our culture and our educational systems spend more time teaching the skills and strategies you need for career success than the qualities you need to radiate that sort of inner light. Many of us are clearer on how to build an external career than on how to build inner character...

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Let's Hope This Isn't Political

Gravestone of Hillary Clinton's dad toppled in Pennsylvania | The Kansas City Star The Kansas City Star

The Chrisitie Platform

Chris Christie’s screw-the-seniors platform: I will slash Medicare and Social Security the best! - Salon.com:

...The specific proposals themselves aren’t anything new. He will gradually raise the retirement ages on Social Security and Medicare by two years each, to 69 and 67, respectively. He would also enhance means-testing for each program. The disability insurance component of Social Security will also be on the chopping block, because it’s very stylish in conservative circles nowadays to argue that most people who receive disability payments are just lazy bums who have plenty of years of hard work left in their backs...

Cons Should Not

102 Things Conservatives Should NOT Do If They Hate Taxes:

Tax day is upon us. And our tax dollars pay for all the benefits of modern society that we enjoy. That being said, there are those among us who hate paying taxes and would rather see the IRS shut down for good, thus eliminating public funding for all the things that we take for granted every day.

So, if you’re a conservative who hates taxes and government, please kindly stop doing the following.

1. Do not use Medicare...

Reich On SOS Clinton

Robert Reich: Hillary’s values aren’t the problem - Salon.com:

...Some wonder about the strength of her values and ideals. I don’t. I’ve known her since she was 19 years old, and have no doubt where her heart is. For her entire career she’s been deeply committed to equal opportunity and upward mobility.

Some worry she’s been too compromised by big money – that the circle of wealthy donors she and her husband have cultivated over the years has dulled her sensitivity to the struggling middle class and poor.

But it’s wrong to assume great wealth, or even a social circle of the wealthy, is incompatible with a deep commitment to reform – as Teddy Roosevelt and his fifth-cousin Franklin clearly demonstrated.

The more relevant concern is her willingness to fight...

Poor Shaming Bills

The double-standard of making the poor prove they’re worthy of government benefits - The 

When you rule by rumor instead of fact...

Washington Post:

Poverty looks pretty great if you're not living in it. The government gives you free money to spend on steak and lobster, on tattoos and spa days, on — why not? — cruise vacations and psychic visits.

Enough serious-minded people seem to think this is what the poor actually buy with their meager aid that we've now seen a raft of bills and proposed state laws to nudge them away from so much excess. Missouri wants to curtail what the poor eat with their food stamps (evidence of the problem from one state legislator: "I have seen people purchasing filet mignons"). Kansas wants to block welfare recipients from spending government money at strip clubs (in legalese: any "sexually oriented business or any retail establishment which provides adult-oriented entertainment in which performers disrobe or perform in an unclothed state for entertainment")...

A Small (Pizza) Victory

Domino’s Pizza franchise owners busted for labor violations - NY Daily News:

Some Domino’s Pizza workers will soon be rolling in dough.

Four franchise owners who controlled 29 Domino’s Pizza stores across the state had to cut Attorney General Eric Schneiderman a $1.5 million slice of their pie.

The owners copped to a slew of labor violations, including breaking minimum wage, overtime and other basic labor laws, Schneiderman’s office said...