Archive for February, 2010

Sunday Mr. Diety Blogging

Lunch with John The Baptist: Apparently not a whole lot of fun.

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February 28th, 2010 at 04:33pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Monday Media Blogging,Mr. Deity,Religion

Friday Quote & Terribly Dangerous Cat Blogging

This week’s quote is from Blood & Donuts, which I guess you could call a vampire bowling comedy…

You see the difference?  Mine left a mark, whereas yours left a smudge.  Most people have some dignity – most people long to leave a mark.  If it were just a question of smudges, they wouldn’t need the bowling shoe rule.

And, of course, there’ll be other people’s Deadly Escaped Tigers…

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Careful now.

February 26th, 2010 at 09:18pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Friday Quote & Cat Blogging

Oh Trickledown, Is There Anything You Can’t Do?

Trickledown: It’s not just for people any more:

Corporate America descended on Capitol Hill Wednesday morning hoping to ride the small business gravy train that’s been gaining steam. Instead, they caught an earful from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), who didn’t appreciate the message they brought.

CEOs representing 11 major corporations argued that the Democratic emphasis on small businesses missed the important role that Big Business has to play, several people in the meeting told HuffPost.

(…)

W. James McNerney Jr., chairman, president and CEO of Boeing Company, was one of the more outspoken executives, arguing that helping big business was the same as helping small businesses, and that either way he supported them doing both, not one or the other. For every job created at Boeing, he said, two small business jobs are created.

His argument sparked something in Reid, who recoiled, indicating with his body language and facial expression that he didn’t like what he was hearing, according to people in the room. Reid dressed down the CEO and then walked out of the meeting.

Yes, that’s right: Just like how the best way to help the poor and middle class is to give the rich massive tax cuts, so too the best way to help small business is to give lots of breaks to big business.  Awesome.

(h/t dday)

February 26th, 2010 at 11:22am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Economy,Wankers

This Is What Happens

When you don’t deliver on your campaign promises.  Or actively work to sabotage them.

A year after supporting Barack Obama for president by an overwhelming 2-to-1 ratio, young adults are cooling quickly toward his Democrats amid dissatisfaction over the lack of change in Washington and an escalating war in Afghanistan.

A study by the Pew Research Center, being released Wednesday, highlights the eroding support from 18- to 29-year- olds whose strong turnout in November 2008 was read by some demographers as the start of a new Democratic movement.

The findings are significant because they offer further proof that the diverse coalition of voters Obama cobbled together in 2008 — including high numbers of first-timers, young minorities and youths — are not Democratic Party voters who can necessarily be counted on.

While young adults remain decidedly more liberal, the survey found the Democratic advantage among 18- to 29-year-olds has substantially narrowed, from a record 62 percent identifying as Democrat vs. 30 percent for the Republicans in 2008, down to 54 percent vs. 40 percent last December. It was the largest percentage point jump in those who identified or leaned Republican among all the voting age groups.

Young adults’ voting enthusiasm also crumbled.

During the presidential election, turnout among 18- to 29-year-olds was the highest in years, comprising roughly 20 percent of the voters in many states including Virginia and New Jersey, due in part to high participation from young blacks and Hispanics.

That percentage, however, dropped by half for the governors’ races in those states last November, where Republicans celebrated wins as black groups pushed Obama to do more to soften the economic blow from mortgage foreclosures and Latinos saw little progress on immigration reform. Young adults also were the least likely of any age group to identify themselves as regular voters.

They could have been “the start of a new Democratic movement”, but Obama chose to turn his back on them the second his election was secure.  Apparently he either thinks he can win without them, that he can turn on the charm and the uplifting hopey talk when he needs it, or that they’ll just have to vote for him because the alternative is so much worse.  Personally, I wouldn’t bet my presidency on any of those outcomes.  Maybe he thinks grateful PhRMA and Wall Street dollars will be enough to buy the 2012 election, but I kinda doubt that too.

And it won’t be just the youth vote Obama will be losing; he’s going to lose a big chunk of the Democratic base too.  Contempt and betrayal are not really great drivers for turnout.

February 26th, 2010 at 07:21am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Economy,Healthcare,Obama,Politics,Polls

Obama Vs. Progressives

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Despite Obama’s desperate desire to see the public option finally curl up and die, progressive congressmembers are still trying to keep the dream alive at today’s healthcare summit.  In addition to the use-reconciliation-to-pass-PO letter that’s circulating around the Senate, we also have:

  • Bernie Sanders saying the Senate does have the 50 votes needed to pass the PO through reconciliation, and that he’s baffled why Obama keeps trying to bury it.
  • Nancy Pelosi reminding Obama that he himself said that the PO would “keep the insurance companies honest and… increase competition” and challenging him to produce a better alternative.  She also pointed out that the public option saves money, which is a very important point that is too often forgotten.
  • The Congressional Progressive Caucus objected to their exclusion from the summit, pointed out that the PO is mad popular, and suggested that perhaps the savings from the PO which everybody likes could be used to offset the excise tax which everybody hates.

At this point, I fear the fix is in, that Obama has made up his mind that he would rather piss off the voters than piss off the healthcare industry, but I’m glad to see that the progressives aren’t letting him off the hook.  This should also help them when they all have to run against Obama in the midterms.

February 25th, 2010 at 08:40pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Democrats,Healthcare,Obama,Politics

No One Could Have Anticipated…

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Turns out Obama “supports” the Consumer Financial Protection Agency in much the same way that he “supported” the public option:

The Obama administration is no longer insisting on the creation of a stand-alone consumer protection agency as a central element of the plan to remake regulation of the financial system.

In hopes of quick congressional approval of a reform bill, White House officials are opening the door to compromise with lawmakers concerned about creating a new bureaucracy, according to congressional and some administration sources.

President Obama’s economic team is now open to housing the consumer regulator inside another agency, such as the Treasury Department, though they still prefer a stand-alone agency. In either case, they are insisting on a regulator with political autonomy and real teeth so it can effectively enforce rules designed to protect consumers of mortgages, credit cards and other financial products.

(…)

A free-standing agency had been a central part of the original blueprint released by the Obama administration, which said it is essential to have one agency with the sole mission of protecting consumers from lending abuses. In the lead-up to the financial crisis, that responsibility was spread across numerous agencies and often took a back seat to ensuring the well-being of banks. A version of the stand-alone proposal was included in a bill passed by the House in December.

(…)

In one scenario under discussion, a consumer bureau would be set up within the Treasury Department. In another, a consumer protection division would be established inside a new national agency to regulate banks.

The latter idea would upset some consumer advocates, who say they do not want the consumer regulator to answer to bank supervisors. Advocates say these supervisors have shoddy records on shielding customers from abusive financial practices.

What could possibly go wrong?

February 25th, 2010 at 11:28am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Corruption/Cronyism,Economy,Obama,Politics,Wankers

Miss Beverly Hills Achieves The Impossible

…She makes Carrie Prejean look good:

Ashley told Fox News that not only is she against same-sex marriage, but that she thinks it is divine law that gays should be put to death because “the Bible is pretty black and white“:

Carrie Prejean isn’t the only beauty queen open to expressing her objection to same-sex marriage. Miss Beverly Hills 2010 Lauren Ashley is also speaking out in support of traditional nuptials.

“The Bible says that marriage is between a man and a woman. In Leviticus it says, ‘If man lies with mankind as he would lie with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death and their blood shall be upon them.’ The Bible is pretty black and white,” Ashley told Pop Tarts.

“I feel like God himself created mankind and he loves everyone, and he has the best for everyone. If he says that having sex with someone of your same gender is going to bring death upon you, that’s a pretty stern warning, and he knows more than we do about life.”

Despite her strong words about homosexuality, Ashley also told Fox that she “has a lot of friends that are gay,” and that there’s “no hate between [her] and anyone.”

Why is it that I never hear any gays or minorities saying that some of their best friends are bigots?  I mean, there are more than enough bigots claiming to be friends with them

2 comments February 25th, 2010 at 07:18am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Religion,Teh Gay,Wankers

Wednesday Why-I-Love-The-Weekly-World-News Blogging – Olympic Edition Pt. II

I know, my previous Olympics post was a bit of a downer.  But this uplifting story will be sure to raise your spirits again:

The Winter Olympics are in full swing and America is transfixed.  Even sports once considered obscure are enjoying a surge in notoriety as Americans kick off the winter blues by cheering on the teams.  In fact one sport is so obscure and absurd that it has become the next big thing.

Curling has become the new fad with hipsters all over the country.  Entire blocks in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, were closed down this week for tournaments.  The sport was a natural fit for the hippest of the hip.  Curling has up to this point been so maligned and unpopular that it was a perfect choice to be co-opted and played ironically by the trust fund generation.  Also it is highly similar to the summer game Bocce, already popular among hipsters because it is usually only played by old European men.  Also the game is not physically demanding and can be played in skinny jeans or American Apparel leggings and and won’t damage vintage t-shirts.

Among hipsters the sport has its own subset of rules.  Many of these rules exist to make the game more ironically lame, thereby more appealing to the hipster demographic.  The game is often played on iced over streets in neighborhoods they are gentrifying.  Actual irons or similar items acquired from a local thrift store are thrown towards a desired goal.  Two teammates with brooms or whisks sweep away detritus or previous residents to clear a path.  A target is placed some ways away, but not too far that they’d have to actually try, usually an LP of an indie band or some kind of vegan fair-trade baked good.  Whoever gets their item closest wins the target.  Or the winning team is treated to brunch; the official meal of the hipster class.

“Man, you just don’t understand” said Kyle Roberts, a self proclaimed web designer/graphic illustrator/part time photographer/writer who has mostly been “finding himself” in the six years since college and a typical Williamsburg resident.  “It’s not that we’re doing it to make it cool.  It’s not cool.  That’s the point.  That’s why its fun, is it’s so lame and we’re recognizing that.  We’re not just slaves to irony, but… yeah whatever.”  When asked how he would feel if the game caught on and became popular he said “MAN!  See if people hear about it and it becomes cool then that’s just lame and we’d all stop doing it.”

Mathematicians at MIT are working on a formula to plot out the “so lame it’s cool” phenomena.  Unfortunately few mathematicians are actually cool enough to “get it.”  Lab tests are being done that include putting skinny jeans on monkeys.

Further proof that the spirit of Sport is truly universal.

February 24th, 2010 at 09:12pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Sports,Weekly World News

Wednesday Why-I-Love-The-Weekly-World-News Blogging – Olympic Edition Pt. I

Weekly World News uncovers a Scandal!  Apparently gamma radiation is the new HGH:

[Apolo] Ohno and [Bode] Miller have won a total of 27 medals in various Olympic events.  This is a record number of medals for one country in the Winter Olympics.  Miller took home the gold in men’s Super Combined, one downhill plus one slalom.  Then he went on to take bronze in the men’s Mega Combined, which is one downhill plus two slaloms… and a blindfolded ski jump.  He took home another gold in the men’s Ultra Combined, which is two downhills, three slaloms, four vodka shooters, and a fistfight with a bear.  He beat out the highly favored Russian team in this event.  Apollo Ohno has won 18 medals in various speed skating trials.  At the 500 meters Ohno had enough time to do a victory lap, then make a cappucino and present it to the silver medalist as he crossed the finish line.  Miller and Ohno are highly favored in the upcoming mens Competitive Snowman.  All medals won will be melted down and used to fund future Olympic teams.

These exceptional accomplishments are now marred by scandal.  Miller and Ohno are believed to have been using performance enhancing gamma radiation.  Rumors are circulating that the two have mutated their way to Olympic glory.  Last week during a standard training the two became angered at coaches, turned green and threw their bowflexes into a nearby lake.  The US Olympic team officially denies all claims that any of their athletes have been intentionally mutated.  “That’s Malarky!” says head coach Paul Swizzel.  “Pure horse-puckey every bit of it!  Why my boys are just as clean and healthy as the driven snow!  No crazy performance enhancing chemicals or radiation here I tell ya!”

Scientists, however, tend to disagree.  Dr. Salomon Vasloo of the Vancouver Science Institute confirms “What we are seeing here is beyond human capacity.  These are not men, they are more like the heroes of legend.  Prime physical specimens capable of feats beyond those of mortal man.  Only science could imbue such gifts, such that the gods of old either can’t or won’t.  Praise be to Science!  Amen.”

I don’t know what’s more disappointing – that they cheated, or that I missed the Ultra Combined final.

2 comments February 24th, 2010 at 07:52pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Sports,Weekly World News

Which Would You Rather Have?

We can haz healthcare!

A medal lasts four years, but universal healthcare is forever.

February 24th, 2010 at 11:17am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Healthcare,Sports

It Certainly Does Explain A Lot…

No wonder Gibbs is trying to throw cold water on passing the public option through reconciliation.  Obama really is playing for the other team. Jebus, what a dishonest scumbag.

I’m still hopeful that Congress will pass the public option simply to save their own skins in November, but it’s going to be a lot harder with the president actively working against them.  I assume even Obama wouldn’t be stupid enough to actually veto the public option if it somehow passed, but if he did I’m sure his explanation would be fascinating.

1 comment February 24th, 2010 at 07:16am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Corruption/Cronyism,Healthcare,Obama,Politics,Wankers

Tales From Bizarro World

…Where Evan Bayh, Kit Bond, Judd Gregg, George Voinovich, Mel Martinez, Jim Bunning, Harry Reid, and John McCain are irreplaceable legislative titans:

With the retirement of Sen. Evan Bayh (Ind.), every Democratic presidential hopeful from 2008 will have exited the Senate by the time the 112th Congress convenes in January — and they’ll have taken an abundance of experience and star power with them.

Bayh joins a group of veteran Democratic and Republican senators, many longtime elected officials, who are set to end their careers at the end of the term. All told, those departures — as well as the death last year of Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) — will leave the chamber with a deficit of 232 years of legislative know-how and Washington gravitas that has characterized Capitol Hill for a generation.

(…)

Additionally, four GOP senators are calling it quits, while one Republican, Mel Martinez (Fla.), resigned his seat last summer. Among those Republicans leaving are three former governors: Judd Gregg (N.H.) after 18 years, Christopher J. Bond (Mo.) after 24 years and George V. Voinovich (Ohio) after 12 years. Jim Bunning of Kentucky also is retiring after two terms.

One GOP lobbyist said the combination of Democratic and Republican retirements amount to a loss of “eons” of experience and include unique, irreplaceable characters who have left an indelible imprint on the Senate and American politics.

(…)

One former Senate Democratic leadership aide said the potential loss of experience from Reid or McCain — or both — would be a significant blow to the chamber and its ability to tackle large, complex issues.

A-HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!  Because Reid and McCain have done such a great job of shepherding large, complex issues to successful conclusions in the past.  Okay, I’ll give McCain campaign finance reform, but I can’t think of any other major accomplishment other than laundering his image of the stink of the Keating Five.  And Harry Reid is one of the weakest and most ineffectual Majority Leaders of all time.

I’ll miss Byron Dorgan and Teddy, and that’s about it.

February 23rd, 2010 at 07:23am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Democrats,McCain,Media,Politics

This Just In…

Earth to Obama and Democrats: How many times do we have to tell you that the reason everyone hates the Senate healthcare bill is because it doesn’t have a public option?

I know this is hard and painful for you to hear, but you would actually improve your re-election chances by moving left, not right.  But perhaps you’re less worried about staying in office than you are about your employment after office.

(h/t Phoenix Woman)

February 22nd, 2010 at 07:18pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Democrats,Healthcare,Obama,Politics,Polls,Wankers

Monday Media Blogging

Fictional promo for Elephant!, the Elephant Man musical starring Anthony Newley, Sammy Davis Jr. and Carol Channing.  I had been trying to find this on YouTube for years, and finally decided to take matters into my own hands.

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Is he a bad elephant, or is he good?

2 comments February 22nd, 2010 at 11:18am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Monday Media Blogging

Breakthrough, Or The Great Punkin’?

Football

On the one hand, Harry Reid has announced his… non-opposition to passing the public option via reconciliation:

With more and more Senators signing on to the letter urging Reid to hold an up or down vote on the public option under reconciliation rules, Reid spokesman Rodell Mollineau sends over a statement signaling Reid’s qualified support for the move:

Senator Reid has always and continues to support the public option as a way to drive down costs and create competition. That is why he included the measure in his original health care proposal.

If a decision is made to use reconciliation to advance health care, Senator Reid will work with the White House, the House, and members of his caucus in an effort to craft a public option that can overcome procedural obstacles and secure enough votes.

Woohoo.  But here’s what scares me:

To be sure, public option supporters still face a steep climb. It’s far from decided whether reconciliation will ultimately be used to pass reform. What’s more, senior Senate aides still think there’s a procedural obstacle in their path: They insist that in order for them to pass a fix to their bill via reconciliation, the House must pass it first — something House leaders oppose.

While I do believe that most of the Senators who have signed the PO letter are sincere, I can’t help but think that Reid (and probably Obama) are trying to make the reconciliation sidecar’s chances look as strong as possible to con the House into voting on the current Senate bill without it.  I’m glad the House leadership still isn’t buying it, but the Senate’s continued insistence that the House must pass the crappy bill first looks like a big ol’ red flag to me.

February 20th, 2010 at 11:37am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Democrats,Healthcare,Politics

Friday Quote & Cat Blogging

This week’s quote is from Children Of The Revolution, which I barely remember.  Something about Australian communists, I think.

But together they made a rather brilliant accountant, apparently.

And, of course, there’ll be other people’s massage cats…

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Awwwsome.

February 19th, 2010 at 06:56pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Friday Quote & Cat Blogging

Republican Hilarity

Republicans certainly do have a unique and fascinating worldview.  Too bad it’s so completely at odds with reality.  First, Orrin Hatch:

But one thing Hatch won’t do, he said, is vote against Obama appointees for partisan reasons. He said he won’t stoop to the tactics he claims Democrats used against President George W. Bush’s appointees.

A-HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!  Right, that totally isn’t happening, I’m sure he had Excellent Totally Valid Nonpartisan Reasons for voting against Sotomayor.  And Democrats totally only voted against Dubya’s appointees out of sheer partisanism and spite, and not because they were unqualified ideological hacks.  Which must be why Dubya couldn’t get hardly anyone confirmed by the end of his first year in office.

And Mitch McConnell:

McConnell said Thursday that he preferred a “right of center” solution, and he urged Obama to become more of a centrist.“President Obama needs to have an epiphany,” he said. “The way to make progress is in the political middle.”

I was kinda confused for a few seconds there, but then I realized that McConnell was talking about the socialist Bizarro Obama that Republicans are always complaining will ruin the country with his far-left madness.  Although just between you and me, I kinda wish we could have that Obama in the White House right now.

February 19th, 2010 at 11:35am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Politics,Republicans,Wankers

Obama Will Lead If Someone Else Leads First

I suppose it’s a good thing that Obama will push for the public option that he promised and repeatedly claimed he wanted… if Harry Reid will:

Maddow: “The private insurance company writ large hasn’t done a great job. That’s why we want a public option to compete with them. These 18 Democratic senators want to bring that back into the fold. If that happened, would the administration fight for it?”

Sebelius: “Well, I think if it’s…Certainly. If it’s part of the decision of the Senate leadership to move forward, absolutely.”

Especially since both Chuck Schumer and most of Nevada are in favor of it (and against healthcare reform without it), which puts extra pressure on Harry to support it.

But how pitiful is it that Obama is only willing to fight for the public option if one of the weakest Majority Leaders ever fights for it first?  Isn’t the President supposed to be a leader, not a follower?  He’s been in the White House for over a year now, and I’m having a hard time thinking of a time where he’s demonstrated anything remotely resembling leadership or courage.

February 19th, 2010 at 07:14am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Democrats,Healthcare,Obama,Politics

Holy Crap!

Phrases I never thought I would write:

I have now been blogging for FIVE YEARS. Crikey.

Over that time, I have written 5538 posts, gotten 10,311 non-spam comments (and over 400,000 spam ones), and had close to 300,000 hits (yes, I have more spam comments than hits).  Go me.

2 comments February 18th, 2010 at 11:22am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Uncategorized

Hysterical Right-Wing Wanker Of The Day

According to Ken Blackwell, Dawn Johnsen’s (still disgracefully languishing) nomination to head OLC is exactly like Stalin exterminating millions of Russian Jews.

President Obama is big on civility. He talks a very good game. But his nominee for a top slot at the Department of Justice–Dawn Johnsen–is a leading exponent of incivility. Johnsen worked with the ACLU for years. And she joined ARM–the so-called Abortion Rights Mobilization–to strip the Catholic Church of its tax-exempt status because of its pro-life advocacy. The Catholic Church eventually won that case–but not until it had spent years and millions of dollars defending itself. The Catholic Church was just the biggest ARM target. If they had succeeded against the Catholics, they surely would have come after the Southern Baptist Convention, the National Association of Evangelicals, and The Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod.

If Mr. Obama is serious about civility he needs to withdraw Dawn Johnsen’s nomination. If she is confirmed, we will see a radical anti-Catholic, pro-abortion zealot influencing policy thoughout the Justice Department—but also policy throughout the entire federal government.

What we are witnessing right now is an anti-Christian programmatic pogrom. What is a “pogrom” it’s the word that describes anti-Jewish raids by Cossacks and others in czarist Russia, but a programmatic pogrom best describes what is happening right now. These are not isolated attacks. And while we no longer have Cossacks to threaten, we now have left-wing bloggers who actually call themselves Kossacks (after the Daily Kos).

Those poor beleaguered Christians.  It’s a wonder they’ve survived this long with all the adversity and persecution they must face as a tiny disempowered minority.

1 comment February 18th, 2010 at 07:22am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Choice,Politics,Republicans,Teh Gay,Wankers

Texas School Board: Mission Accomplished!

Looks like all that hard work on shaping textbook content is really paying off:

Nearly a third of Texans believe humans and dinosaurs roamed the earth at the same time, and more than half disagree with the theory that humans developed from earlier species of animals, according to the University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll.

(…)

• 38 percent said human beings developed over millions of years with God guiding the process and another 12 percent said that development happened without God having any part of the process. Another 38 percent agreed with the statement “God created human beings pretty much in their present form about 10,000 years ago.”

• Asked about the origin and development of life on earth without injecting humans into the discussion, and 53 percent said it evolved over time, “with a guiding hand from God.” They were joined by 15 percent who agreed on the evolution part, but “with no guidance from God.” About a fifth — 22 percent — said life has existed in its present form since the beginning of time.

• Most of the Texans in the survey — 51 percent — disagree with the statement, “human beings, as we know them today, developed from earlier species of animals.” Thirty-five percent agreed with that statement, and 15 percent said they don’t know.

• Did humans live at the same time as the dinosaurs? Three in ten Texas voters agree with that statement; 41 percent disagree, and 30 percent don’t know.

That’ll do, Texas School Board.  That’ll do.

(h/t WT)

3 comments February 17th, 2010 at 09:29pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Education,Politics,Polls,Religion,Republicans,Wankers

Evan Bayh, Good Government Crusader

Yes, it’s all well and good that retiring-in-the-douchebaggiest-possible-way Evan Bayh is suddenly on board with the filibuster reform that can’t even be voted on until after his retirement takes effect, but I have to wonder whether he really wants to reduce the filibuster threshold to eliminate gridlock, or to preserve the co-presidency of his conservadem buddies Ben Nelson and Joe Lieberman.

If the Senate ends up split 50-50 in 2011, I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see the idea of eliminating the filibuster completely start gaining momentum…

February 17th, 2010 at 07:28pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Democrats,Lieberman,Politics

Wait… What?

Marc Ambinder explains why Evan Bayh quit:

Bayh is an anomaly of sorts; he really grew to dislike the influence of liberal activists on his Senate colleagues. To him, these activists increased the cost of doing business. Reaching out to the other side became more risky than rallying around an ideological pole, even though that rallying around contributed to stasis. When it became clear to Bayh that the White House wasn’t going to play his game — wasn’t going to sell out liberals at every turn — Bayh decided he had had enough.

What on Earth is he talking about?  In what universe do liberal activists have influence on the Senate?  In what universe is Obama not selling us out at every turn?

This is a great time to be a conservative Democrat: You have a President and a Majority Leader who will bend over backwards to give you whatever you want, even if it means gutting the President’s signature objectives and campaign promises, and you’re quitting? It’s like Ben Nelson or Joe Lieberman walking away because they don’t think they have enough influence.

February 17th, 2010 at 11:24am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Blogosphere,Democrats,Media,Obama,Politics

Fingers Crossed

Possible hopeful signs?  Is it possible that congressional Democrats are finally starting to look at self-preservation despite Obama’s insistence that they all commit electoral suicide by backing the Senate bill as is?  For one thing, it looks like they’ve finally realized that the excise tax is hideously unpopular, and for another, it looks like the House letter asking for the Senate to use reconciliation to restore the popular public option has finally crossed over to the Senate.  Only 8 Senate signatures so far, but hopefully more are coming.

Thanks for nothing, Barack.

February 17th, 2010 at 07:24am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Democrats,Healthcare,Politics

Small Government = Bridge Collapses

This is what happens when you view taxes and government spending as the enemy:

Two years ago, a bridge inspector who had stopped for lunch in Philadelphia’s Port Richmond neighborhood happened to glance up at a viaduct that carries Interstate 95 over the neighborhood. He noticed a 6-foot crack in a 15-foot column that was supporting the highway. His sandwich was quickly forgotten. Two miles of the highway had to be closed for three days for emergency repairs to prevent a catastrophe from occurring.

These kinds of problems are not peculiar to Pennsylvania. New Orleans was lost for want of an adequate system of levees and floodwalls. Lawrence Summers, President Obama’s chief economic adviser, tells us that 75 percent of America’s public schools have structural deficiencies. The nation’s ports, inland waterways, drinking water and wastewater systems — you name it — are hurting to one degree or another.

Ignoring these problems imperils public safety, diminishes our economic competitiveness, is penny-wise and pound-foolish, and results in tremendous missed opportunities to create new jobs on a vast scale.

Competitors are leaving us behind when it comes to infrastructure investment. China is building a network of 42 high-speed rail lines, while the U.S. has yet to build its first. Other nations are well ahead of us in the deployment of broadband service and green energy technology. We spend scandalous amounts of time sitting in traffic jams or enduring the endless horrors of airline travel. Low-cost, high-speed Internet access is a science-fiction fantasy in many parts of the United States.

Even if the magic of the free market were somehow to address this, it’s hard to imagine that rural areas would get a whole lot of help, as they just wouldn’t be profitable enough to be worth the trouble.

1 comment February 16th, 2010 at 11:28am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Economy,Republicans

Monday Media Blogging

Comprehensive Examination!  One of my dad’s student films from his days at the University of Chicago – home of the 8-hour quiz.

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February 15th, 2010 at 12:37pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Monday Media Blogging

Sunday Mr. Deity Blogging

Mr. Deity is Confronted By Paradox.

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February 14th, 2010 at 05:27pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Monday Media Blogging,Mr. Deity,Religion

Fierce Advocacy: Ur Doin It Wrong

Well, Dick Cheney is now to the left of Obama and the Democrats on Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.  Great job, guys.

As Joe noted below, former vice President, and arch-conservative nemesis of the Obama administration, Dick Cheney said today that he thinks the ban on gays serving in the US military will be lifted, and he thinks it’s time. That means the Obama administration and the Democrats in Congress now having Dick Cheney, Colin Powell, Secretary of Defense Gates, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Mullen covering their backside on this issue. So what do they do? Do they push for a repeal now, strike when the iron is hot, take advantage of the once-in-a-lifetime momentum that has developed around this issue in the past two weeks?

No.

After two weeks of no direction whatsoever from the White House as to whether we even should proceed with the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell this year, more unnamed administration officials are telling AP that they won’t touch the repeal for years to come. (Apparently, according to AP, they want to give the troops time to “get used” to the idea, gentle souls that they are.)

(…)

We now have Colin Powell (Republican), SecDef Gates (Republican appointee), Chairman Mullen (Republican appointee), Dick Cheney (Republican), Ted Olson (Republican), and the torture twins (Republicans), better than the Democratic party on this paramount gay civil rights issue. For years, we’ve been able to laugh in the face of gay Republicans who claimed the GOP was a viable alternative for gay Americans seeking their civil rights. No one is laughing any more. The Democratic party needs to wake up and realize that its political homophobia is losing it a constituency.

Fantastic.  Apparently we’ve reached a point where gays’ best chance for equality is to either vote Republican or hope that one of Obama’s daughters comes out.

February 14th, 2010 at 01:21pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Cheney,Democrats,Obama,Politics,Republicans,Teh Gay,Wankers

So Much For “Dreams Of My FDR”

I partially agree with this…

President Barack Obama’s dream of being a historically transformational figure like Franklin D. Roosevelt or Ronald Reagan may be slipping from his grasp.

(…)

Obama’s quest to usher in a new liberal era — one with major new policies and a growing Democratic voter majority punctuating a shift away from the conservative era that Reagan ushered in — is in trouble and may be disintegrating.

That is to say, I agree with the disintegrating/slipping from his grasp part, but not with the dream/quest part.  I just do not see any evidence that this kind of transformation was ever Obama’s goal.  Sure, during the campaign he said it was his goal because that was what everyone wanted to hear, but his lukewarm words and actions since then have been those of a man determined to work within the status quo.

If transformation really is Obama’s dream, then he’s been remarkably half-assed about fighting for it.

February 13th, 2010 at 04:56pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Economy,Healthcare,Obama,Politics

This?

Obama can’t be bothered to involve himself in the healthcare reform process, but he wants to be all hands-on with THIS???

Glad to see that he’s got his priorities and signature issues straight and everything…

February 13th, 2010 at 02:42pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Healthcare,Obama,Politics,Terrorism,Wankers

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