ShareThis

Custom Search

Somebody at the White House Needs to be Fired

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

By John Aravosis
AMERICAblog


Apparently, the health care reform issue has caught the White House by surprise. They had no idea that folks on the left cared about the public option, they're now telling the Washington Post.

What?

They had no idea, they say, that it was a make or break issue for people.

Again, what?

That is either a lie, or the president is being staffed by idiots.

How many times do we have to tell people in the White House that their lack of outreach to Democrats is going to bite them in the ass?

Read this in today's Washington Post, about the uproar over Obama caving on the public option:
"I don't understand why the left of the left has decided that this is their Waterloo," said a senior White House adviser, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. "We've gotten to this point where health care on the left is determined by the breadth of the public option. I don't understand how that has become the measure of whether what we achieve is health-care reform."...
(Remainder.)

Read more...

Health Care and Godwin's Law: Evoking Nazis is for Losers

By Colby Hall
Mediaite


A corollary to Godwin’s Law states that “as an Internet discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler increases, and whomever makes that comparison has automatically ‘lost’ whatever debate was in progress.” Extending this axiom to the current public discourse of health care reform begs the question: should critics of the Obama Administration who evoke Hitler and Nazis be considered losers? Absolutely.

This came to mind last night as Barney Frank responded to a Town Hall participant who asked “Why do you continue to support a Nazi policy?” Frank’s response was not only refreshingly quick and concise, it was the model reply to this line of questioning.

Frank said, “You stand there with a picture of the president defaced to look like Hitler and compare the effort to increase health care to the Nazis. My answer to you is, as I said before, it is a tribute to the First Amendment that this sort of vile, contemptible nonsense is so freely propagated.”

But the individual asking Frank about the Nazi policy is not an exception to the rule – she’s part of a growing trend. As Mediaite’s Rachel Sklar points out earlier today, there are plenty of examples of portraying Obama and his reform agenda as somehow being akin to Nazi Germany:
  • HotAirPundit points out that “LaRouche PAC had a table outside the event” where Obama-with-Hitler-mustache posters were being handed out.
(Remainder.)

Read more...

A Conservative's Road to Same-Sex Marriage Advocacy



By Jo Becker
The New York Times
Photo:  Justin Maxon (NYT)


Theodore B. Olson’s office is a testament to his iconic status in the conservative legal movement. A framed photograph of Ronald Reagan, the first of two Republican presidents Mr. Olson served, is warmly inscribed with “heartfelt thanks.” Fifty-five white quills commemorate each of his appearances before the Supreme Court, where he most famously argued the 2000 election case that put George W. Bush in the White House. On the bookshelf sits a Defense Department medal honoring his legal defense of Mr. Bush’s counterterrorism policies after Sept. 11.

But in a war room down the hall, where Mr. Olson is preparing for what he believes could be the most important case of his career, the binders stuffed with briefs, case law and notes offer a different take on a man many liberals love to hate. They are filled with arguments Mr. Olson hopes will lead to a Supreme Court decision with the potential to reshape the legal and social landscape along the lines of cases like Brown v. Board of Education and Roe v. Wade: the legalization of same-sex marriage nationwide.

Given the traditional battle lines on the issue, Mr. Olson’s decision to file a lawsuit challenging California’s recent ban on same-sex marriage has stirred up stereotype-rattled suspicion on both sides.

“For conservatives who don’t like what I’m doing, it’s, ‘If he just had someone in his family we’d forgive him,’ ” Mr. Olson said. “For liberals it’s such a freakish thing that it’s, ‘He must have someone in his family, otherwise a conservative couldn’t possibly have these views.’ It’s frustrating that people won’t take it on face value.”...(Remainder.)

Read more...

Federal Court Hearing on Prop. 8 Today in SF

By Joe Sudbay
AMERICAblog


We're keeping an eye on California today. There's a hearing in federal court on the lawsuit brought against Prop. 8 by the top gun legal team of David Boies and Ted Olson. Here's an excerpt from the press release of the American Foundation for Equal Rights, the group that hired Boies and Olson. And, yes, you'll see that the gay-haters had the audacity to invoke the name of Harvey Milk:
A hearing on the federal challenge to Proposition 8 led by the American Foundation for Equal Rights and attorneys Theodore Olson and David Boies will be held Wednesday, August 19 in San Francisco at 10 a.m. A press availability will immediately follow the hearing.

In documents filed with the court in advance of the hearing, defenders of Proposition 8 cited slain San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk as evidence that LGBT political power is "substantial" enough to undermine plaintiffs' constitutional challenges to Prop. 8. They also question the quality of LGBT families and say Proposition 8 is appropriate because discrimination against the LGBT community is "increasingly rare."...
(Remainder.)

Read more...

Chuck Todd: When Americans Read "Actual Details" Of Obama Health Care Plan, Majority Support It

Read more...

Democrats Seem Set to Go It Without Obstructionist Repiglickins

By Carl Hulse and Jeff Zeleny
The New York Times


WASHINGTON — Given hardening Republican opposition to Congressional health care proposals, Democrats now say they see little chance of the minority’s cooperation in approving any overhaul, and are increasingly focused on drawing support for a final plan from within their own ranks.

Top Democrats said Tuesday that their go-it-alone view was being shaped by what they saw as Republicans’ purposely strident tone against health care legislation during this month’s Congressional recess, as well as remarks by leading Republicans that current proposals were flawed beyond repair.

Rahm Emanuel, the White House chief of staff, said the heated opposition was evidence that Republicans had made a political calculation to draw a line against any health care changes, the latest in a string of major administration proposals that Republicans have opposed.

“The Republican leadership,” Mr. Emanuel said, “has made a strategic decision that defeating President Obama’s health care proposal is more important for their political goals than solving the health insurance problems that Americans face every day.”

The Democratic shift may not make producing a final bill much easier. The party must still reconcile the views of moderate and conservative Democrats worried about the cost and scope of the legislation with those of more liberal lawmakers determined to win a government-run insurance option to compete with private insurers....(Remainder.)

Read more...

A British Surgeon Tells NPR Repiglickin Smears of NHS are Ludicrous

Read more...

Porcine Wingnut, Breitbart, Has a Really Bizarre Conspiracy Theory About White House Email Lists

Read more...

In Defence of the NHS: I'm Glad I Didn't Break My Leg in the US



Stephen Bates' intensive treatment after a serious fall has left him bewildered by attacks on the NHS in America.


By Stephen Bates
The Guardian


Of all the thoughts that flashed through my mind as I fell from 15ft up a ladder one morning last May, the potential financial cost of my unexpected descent was not one. I had been trying to paint the weatherboard above the bedroom windows of our house; a whim that had occurred to me in the middle of the night (as these things do) while working out chores for my week's holiday. Unfortunately, I reached just a little too far on a ladder just a little too short, and suddenly felt it slide from under me. Bouncing off the wall, knocking off the guttering and a carriage lamp in the process, I eventually collapsed in an inelegant heap on top of the ladder.

In the agonising hour that followed before our next-door neighbour arrived home and found me whimpering piteously for help, left leg utterly unresponsive, I had time to think of many things – including how stupid I'd been – but never the implications of my future treatment. This was Britain, after all. I would, without question, query or censure, be treated by the NHS at no cost to myself.

Not so, perhaps, had I bounced off the front of my parents-in-law's house in Houston, Texas. They are in their early 80s, expatriates from Britain for more than 50 years, and have followed my medical care with what I now realise is more than solicitous interest, thanks to the vitriolic US healthcare debate of recent weeks and the slagging-off that British medicine has received as a result (why do Americans always hone in on the state of our teeth?)....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Matt Taibbi Says No Public Option Will Cause Progressive Revolt in Congress

By Heather
Crooks and Liars


Rachel Maddow talks to Matt Taibbi about what is going to happen to the Democratic Party if the White House settles for a bill with no public option. Taibbi feels that this is the moment the progressive wing of the party draws a line in the sand. They note that Bernie Sanders in the Senate and Anthony Weiner in the House have both said that if there's no public option, there will be no bill at all.

Taibbi thinks a deal was cut from the beginning between the White House and the insurance and pharmaceutical industries and that they never intended to have a public option. As both Taibbi and Maddow note it doesn't matter what the Democrats do, they're not going to get any Republican support for the health care bill, so wooing Republicans doesn't make any sense.

Taibbi has an article coming out at Rolling Stone Friday titled Sick and Wrong: How Washington is Screwing up Health Care Reform and Why It May Take a Revolt to Fix It. Sounds about right....(Original.)

Read more...

Jon Stewart Slams Misleading Cable News Instant Polls

By David Edwards and Stephen Webster
The Raw Story


Jon Stewart on Monday night called out cable news pundits for using unscientific, instant-text polls to support their points of view.

Flashing between Fox, CNN and MSNBC anchors, a trend among them became readily apparent: It’s as if completely different audiences are watching the channels.

Polls returning with instant results like 93 percent, 93, percent, 94, percent, 98 percent, or the oft-coveted “Unanimous” (aired by Fox News Channel), Stewart quipped: “Those are the numbers Saddam Hussein would have killed for … And did.”

Zeroing in on CNN’s right-wing pundit Lou Dobbs and three recent polls on illegal immigration, another trend became apparent: Nearly everyone texting in Dobbs’ poll was heavily influenced by Dobbs.

In one poll, the CNN pundit even asked, “Do you believe it’s time illegal aliens said ‘thank you’ for all the help and support they get in this country, help and support they don’t get from the countries they’ve left?”

A mere 98 percent of respondents said “Yes.”

“With numbers that high, it has actually got to include some illegal aliens,” said Stewart. “… [They're] thinking, ‘You know, I should have sent a card. I’ve, really, I’ve been rude.’”...(Remainder.)



Read more...

The Backfiring of Repiglickin Bullying

By P.M. Carpenter
The Fifth Columnist at Buzz Flash


Uh-oh. They, the Republicans, God love 'em, have gone and poked the bear.

In most Democratic administrations this sort of public admonition would be standard operating procedure, but for Obama's young team, it's a seismic breakthrough: "The (m-f-ing) Republican leadership," charged chief of staff Rahm Emanuel yesterday, "has made a strategic decision that defeating President Obama's health care proposal is more important for their (m-f-ing) political goals than solving the (m-f-ing) health insurance problems that Americans face every (m-f-ing) day."

Ah, "a return to normalcy," as Warren G. Harding once neologistically put it: in this case, the White House and Congressional Dems on one side, the GOP on the other, with no pretensions of bipartisan cooperation or common purpose, because, simply, there isn't any. There hasn't been all along.

There could have been; in fact cooperation and common purpose could have been the Republican Party's path to regained respectability -- a political objective that had them befuddled; they thought it over and opted not only for obstructionism instead, but obstructionism in its most malicious form.  

They always overreach. Political sabotage is generally designed -- here, dear Republicans, is what seems like a superfluous primer -- to weaken the opposition and its goals, with some electoral benefit accruing to the saboteur in the process. But in the matter of health-care reform, while achieving (at least momentarily) the former, the GOP has utterly blown the latter, with public opinion polls showing a consistently meager confidence in the pseudoconservative party.

This is the Democrats' chance, since, as the NY Times reports this morning, however belatedly they "now say they see little chance of the minority's cooperation in approving any overhaul." The GOP's "purposely strident tone" has backed Democrats into a partisan corner of, one hopes, internal common purpose -- no longer can their Max Baucuses wear the dense, impenetrable armor of bringing those Chuck Grassleys along; and what's equally hopeful is that -- see Rahm's comment, above -- the White House now "hope[s] to make the case to the American people that it was Republicans who had abandoned the effort at bipartisanship."...(Remainder.)

Read more...

Congressman Anthony Weiner Leave Right-Wing Tool Joe Scarborough "Speechless"

Part 1




Part 2


Read more...

Republicans, Religion and the Triumph of Unreason

How do they train themselves to be so impervious to reality?

By Johann Hari
The Independent


Something strange has happened in America in the nine months since Barack Obama was elected. It has best been summarised by the comedian Bill Maher: "The Democrats have moved to the right, and the Republicans have moved to a mental hospital."

The election of Obama – a black man with an anti-conservative message – as a successor to George W. Bush has scrambled the core American right's view of their country. In their gut, they saw the US as a white-skinned, right-wing nation forever shaped like Sarah Palin.

When this image was repudiated by a majority of Americans in a massive landslide, it simply didn't compute. How could this have happened? How could the cry of "Drill, baby, drill" have been beaten by a supposedly big government black guy? So a streak that has always been there in the American right's world-view – to deny reality, and argue against a demonic phantasm of their own creation – has swollen. Now it is all they can see.

Since Obama's rise, the US right has been skipping frantically from one fantasy to another, like a person in the throes of a mental breakdown. It started when they claimed he was a secret Muslim, and – at the same time – that he was a member of a black nationalist church that hated white people. Then, once these arguments were rejected and Obama won, they began to argue that he was born in Kenya and secretly smuggled into the United States as a baby, and the Hawaiian authorities conspired to fake his US birth certificate. So he is ineligible to rule and the office of President should pass to... the Republican runner-up, John McCain....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Health Care Lobbyist: 6 for Each Member of Congress



By Andrew Malcolm
Los Angeles Times


Here's something that might have slipped passed while you were postponing the weekend by working so very late Friday night.

First, to state the obvious: In the 50 states, everyone has two senators and one House member representing them in Washington. Those members of Congress are presumably back home now getting an earful in public meetings from both sides about the hot summer's hottest issue, the broad healthcare reform legislation favored by President Obama, who was going to bring folks together.

There was much talk from the same two sides all last week about packing of those local get-togethers that Investor's Business Daily so deliciously calls "clown hall meetings." Supporters and opponents charged that the other side was busing in adherents and packing the sessions, and even being anti-American with their dissent.

The president, who held three healthcare talk-fests himself, also complained about the media focusing mainly on the disorderly sessions. How strange! That would be like the media focusing on one lousy plane crash instead of the thousands of safe flights each day. Or residents gossiping about a neighborhood divorce, instead of the dozens of happy nearby marriages....(Remainder.)

Read more...

The Lies that Fox News Viewers Believe

By Mark
News Corpse


Six years ago the Program on International Policy Attitudes published a study that showed that Fox viewers are far more likely to believe things that are demonstrably false, than are viewers of other networks. It’s still true.

A new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll was released today that included questions centered on the recent health care debate. What made this poll unique was that four of the questions sought to ascertain whether the respondents believed statements that were known to be untrue. Here are the results broken out by which news sources the respondents favored:

On Health Care Reform, Those Who Believe
That It Will…
MSNBC/CNN
Viewers
Fox News
Viewers
Give Coverage To Illegal Immigrants: 41% 72%
Lead To A Government Takeover: 39% 79%
Pay For Abortions: 40% 69%
Stop Care To The Elderly: 30% 75%

Let me repeat: These are statements that are known to be untrue, yet Fox News viewers believe them in overwhelming numbers. It’s bad enough that approximately 40% of MSNBC/CNN viewers believe these myths, but clearly Fox is producing an audience of vastly misinformed, cultural illiterates....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Gay Marriage Litigator Seeks to Break Up California

Attorney for Smelt plaintiffs foresees legal loss, but political springboard to divide state north-south

By Duncan Osborne
Gay City News


The attorney representing two gay men who sued in state court and now in federal court in southern California to win the right to marry hopes the case will spawn a political movement that will result in residents there voting by ballot initiative to divide the state in two.

“We’re hoping to use the case in court as a springboard to get a proposition on the ballot that will break up California into two states,” said Richard C. Gilbert, a partner at Gilbert & Marlowe, a law firm with two offices in California. “We think if we can get this proposition on the ballot, we think we’ll win.”

Gilbert said the ideal result would be that all the counties north of Los Angeles would become New California while the southern counties would remain California.

Gilbert likened the circumstances of his clients — Arthur Smelt and Christopher Hammer — to Dredd Scott, who sued for his freedom in the 19th century only to have the US Supreme Court rule in 1857 that no African-American, free or enslaved, could be a US citizen. That decision contributed to the Civil War and Scott was eventually freed.

“We don’t want a civil war,” Gilbert said. “We just want to have civil division in our state between people who are willing to respect the rights of all people and those who are not.” Residents of New California, in his view, would be far more amenable to arguments in favor of marriage equality than those in the southern part of the state.

The couple originally sued in 2004 in state court, where the case was dismissed, but they have continued fighting on procedural grounds into federal court. They are battling to keep the case alive in federal court where, Gilbert said, their chances of prevailing are poor....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Obamacare Will Bring Home Invasion

(h/t Joe.My.God)

Well this is according to the Christo-Fascist freaks over at OneNewsNow.com and some mouth-breather named Mik e Farris.  Will the batshit tin-foil hat craziness of these people never stop?  According to these mashed up piles of slug shit, Obama is going to force people to undergo home visitations:
Mike Farris with ParentalRights.org is drawing attention to Title IX, Subpart 3, section 440, on page 837 of Obama's healthcare plan (HR 3200). That section deals with the creation of a government bureaucracy that would establish and expand "programs providing voluntary home visitation for families with young children and families expecting children."
Seriously?  You've got to be kidding me with this.  Please tell me that these people are not fucking serious.  This is enough to for a person to spike the punch at their anti-abortion God-Wants-Me-To-Be-Rich social with copious amounts of rat poison.

Read more...

Former Secret Service Agent: Gun-Toters Creating ‘Atmosphere of Danger’ for Obama

By David Edwards and Daniel Tencer
The Raw Story


As many as 12 people openly carrying guns showed up at President Barack Obama's speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention in Phoenix, Arizona, on Monday, adding to concerns about the recent trend of private citizens bringing weapons to presidential appearances.

Those people are "creating an atmosphere that could be dangerous to the president," a former Secret Service agent told MSNBC's Rachel Maddow Monday night.

Joseph Petro, author of Standing Next to History, a memoir of life in the Secret Service, told viewers of The Rachel Maddow Show that these types of incidents were not something the Secret Service typically encountered — until now.

And Petro laid some of the blame with the politicians and pundits who have whipped parts of the public into a frenzy over health care reform. "I would argue that the vitriolic political rhetoric we're hearing from seemingly responsible people is stimulating a lot of these foolish stunts," Petro said.

Bringing guns to political rallies "could incite or encourage one of those individuals at the [political] fringe [into] doing something dangerous or perhaps violent against the president," he said. "Maybe the politicians should look at lowering some of the rhetoric to try to create a more positive atmosphere."

On CNN Monday, Time magazine columnist Joe Klein said: "I've been doing this [covering political rallies] for almost 40 years now and I've never seen anything like this."...(Remainder.)

Read more...

The GOP's Troubled History

By Josh Marshall
Talking Points Memo


As we track the escalating number of incidents of right-wing fringers bringing guns to Obama events or other health create town hall events, we are, unsurprisingly, seeing various conservative websites mocking the public concern. "Oh, those Dems, they go all wobbly just because a few upstanding citizens show up with legal firearms." Call it the new girly-manism, it's a sign that Democrats are so many political panty-waists because they've never seen the gun culture up close or just get easily rattled.

It's true that there are some regional divergences at work here. Weapons just don't get carried around in public in say New Jersey or Connecticut the way they do in the South or especially the west.

But let's be honest about what this is about. The right -- the modern American right -- has a very troubled history with political violence. The ideological pattern is clear going back at least thirty years and arguably far longer. A simple review of the 1990s, particularly 1993, 1994, culminating in many respects in the tragic 1995 bombing of the Oklahoma City Federal building in April 1995 tells the tale. Mix in the militias, the thankfully inept attempt on President Clinton's life a few months before Oklahoma City (see Francisco Duran) and it's all really not a pretty picture.

One moment stands out clearly in my mind. Back in the early days of the Bush administration, Mickey Kaus had a typically contrarian post in which he suggested that with the rising tide of animosity on the left toward President Bush it was only a matter of time before we saw the outcropping of political violence on the left, to parallel what we'd seen from the right with the Clinton-hatred of the mid-1990s. (Perhaps someone can dig up the post? Late Update: Found.) It was a typically Kausian post, not only for its strained contrarianism but more for its complete failure of predictive value. And the failure of anything in parallel to arise was even more telling because antipathy toward President Bush really did become entrenched, inflamed and profound. Far more than I would have imagined at the outset....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Croatian Sex Education is Homophobic and Biased Says EU

The European Committee of Social Rights, which monitors compliance with the Council of Europe's European Social Charter, ruled that Croatia's sex-education curriculum discriminates on the basis of sexual orientation, last week.

By Rex Wockner
PinkPaper.com


The European Committee of Social Rights, which monitors compliance with the Council of Europe's European Social Charter, ruled that Croatia's sex-education curriculum discriminates on the basis of sexual orientation, last week.

The committee said parts of the curriculum "stigmatize homosexuals and are based upon negative, distorted, reprehensible and degrading stereotypes."

The case against Croatia was filed in 2007 by the London-based International Centre for the Legal Protection of Human Rights, the New York-based Center for Reproductive Rights, and Zagreb's Center for Education, Counseling and Research.

The complaint said the state-sponsored sex-education program TeenStar teaches that condoms do not prevent HIV and STDs, that gay relationships are "deviant" and that stay-at-home mothers make for better families.

"This is an extremely important decision because it is the first time that an international human rights body has addressed a complaint on the issue of sex education in schools and articulated detailed standards on countries' obligation to provide accurate and science-based sex education," said Christina Zampas, regional manager and senior legal adviser for Europe at the Center for Reproductive Rights....(Original.)

Read more...

Antibiotic Resistance at Factory Farms “Scares the Hell Out of” Johns Hopkins Scientists

By Meg White
Buzz Flash


I don't like it when scientists feel the need to explain that they're scared out of their wits, or use exclamation marks.

I also get a little nervous when they say stuff like, "We're such a dumb species, we don't deserve to survive on this planet" because of the great lengths we're going to just to kill ourselves off.

Nevertheless, I was glued to this shocking piece called simply "Farmacology" in the most recent issue of John Hopkins Magazine on the devastating effects of low level, non-therapeutic antibiotics in industrial agriculture.

It turns out they're making more than just broilers and bacon on your local factory farm; they're growing germs that are resistant to antibiotics. And don't think your commitment to organics or vegetarianism will save you: Your exposure to these superbugs could depend on actions as innocuous as driving behind a truck bound for a Tyson slaughterhouse.

Ellen Silbergeld, a professor of environmental health sciences at the Bloomberg School of Public Health, has been studying the phenomenon for years. She's no radical -- she doesn't even necessarily advocate organic meat production or ceasing the use of antibiotics on farm animals. She simply wants farmers to stop using antibacterial measures to boost profits.

Antibiotics are inserted into animal feed not only because they're necessary to ward of the diseases endemic in the cramped and unsanitary conditions of concentrated-animal feeding operations (CAFOs); such additives also make animals grow faster. Silbergeld explains:
"These are feed additives. It's like using antibiotics as hair dye." She adds, "We have this practice of permitting the addition of almost any antibiotic that you can think of to animal feed, for no therapeutic purpose, under conditions that absolutely favor the rise of resistance. We have no controls or management of the wastes. Our food safety system is a shambles. This is a situation that is widely recognized by the World Health Organization, the American Medical Association, and by others, and nothing happens! It's astounding to me!"
(Remainder.)

Read more...

The Fifty Top U.S. War Criminals Who Need to be Prosecuted

By David Swanson
The Public Record


Compiled below, in hopes that it may be of some assistance to Eric Holder, John Conyers, Patrick Leahy, active citizens, foreign courts, the International Criminal Court, law firms preparing civil suits, and local or state prosecutors with decency and nerve is a list of 50 top living U.S. war criminals. These are men and women who helped to launch wars of aggression or who have been complicit in lesser war crimes. These are not the lowest-ranking employees or troops who managed to stray from official criminal policies. These are the makers of those policies.

The occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan have seen the United States target civilians, journalists, hospitals, and ambulances, use antipersonnel weapons including cluster bombs in densely settled urban areas, use white phosphorous as a weapon, use depleted uranium weapons, employ a new version of napalm found in Mark 77 firebombs, engage in collective punishment of Iraqi civilian populations — including by blocking roads, cutting electricity and water, destroying fuel stations, planting bombs in farm fields, demolishing houses, and plowing down orchards — detain people without charge or legal process without the rights of prisoners of war, imprison children, torture, and murder.

The list below does not include those responsible for war crimes prior to 2001. Nor does it include those currently in power who are making themselves complicit by failing to prosecute or cease commission of these crimes. The list could be greatly expanded. It could also be narrowed. I would argue, however, that it presents a more reasonable starting place than Holder’s reported proposal to investigate only CIA employees who failed to comply with criminal torture policies, of whom there are no doubt more than 50....(Remainder.)

Read more...

AMA President Says Pregnant Woman Barred From Buying Insurance

By PolitiFact
St. Peterburg Times


You've probably heard of "pre-existing conditions," which provide an escape clause for health insurance companies. If you have a pre-existing condition, an insurance company typically won't pay for treatment.

J. James Rohack, president of the American Medical Association, cited them when he was asked during an appearance on Fox News Sunday on Aug. 16, 2009, whether the Democratic health plan would lead to rationing for older patients.

"Well, there's a myth that rationing doesn't occur right now," Rohack said. "In the United States, if a woman's pregnant and on the individual market (and) tries to get health insurance, that's called a pre-existing condition and it's not paid for. That's why this bill's important. It gets rid of some of the rationing that's occurring right now." The AMA endorsed the House version of health care reform legislation in July.

First, we should emphasize that he's only talking about the relatively small number of women who buy their coverage through what insurers call the individual market. About two-thirds of women have health insurance through their employer or their spouse's employer, and about 13 percent have public coverage such as Medicaid or military health care.

So the people affected by these limitations include the 19 percent now uninsured and the 6 percent that have coverage purchased on the individual market. These policies are sold directly to an individual by a private insurer, and the purchaser doesn't get the same consumer protections routinely given to those who have coverage through an employer. For example, people in employer-based health plans have benefited from requirements for maternity coverage that date back to the federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978. But individual plans are not included under that umbrella and are regulated state by state....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Warren Buffet: The Greenback Effect

By Warren E. Buffett
The New York Times


OMAHA - In nature, every action has consequences, a phenomenon called the butterfly effect. These consequences, moreover, are not necessarily proportional. For example, doubling the carbon dioxide we belch into the atmosphere may far more than double the subsequent problems for society. Realizing this, the world properly worries about greenhouse emissions.

The butterfly effect reaches into the financial world as well. Here, the United States is spewing a potentially damaging substance into our economy — greenback emissions.

To be sure, we’ve been doing this for a reason I resoundingly applaud. Last fall, our financial system stood on the brink of a collapse that threatened a depression. The crisis required our government to display wisdom, courage and decisiveness. Fortunately, the Federal Reserve and key economic officials in both the Bush and Obama administrations responded more than ably to the need.

They made mistakes, of course. How could it have been otherwise when supposedly indestructible pillars of our economic structure were tumbling all around them? A meltdown, though, was avoided, with a gusher of federal money playing an essential role in the rescue....(Remainder.)

Read more...

What if Democrats Behaved More Like Repiglickins?

By Tom Tomorrow
Salon.com



Read more...

Rep. Barney Frank Attacks Wingnut Bullshit: On What Planet Do You Spend Most of Your Time?

By Transplanted Texan
MyDD


Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) is having none of the you're-a-Nazi bullcrap at his town hall meetings. Give the man credit for his spine in this video as he smacks down a woman who compared Obama to Hitler because she heard he might cut Medicare to help the deficit.

"Ma'am, having a conversation with you would be like trying to argue with a dining room table!"



(Original.)

Read more...

Number of Those Without Health Insurance About 46 Million

By PolitiFact
St. Petersburg Times


It's a statistic often quoted by Democrats during the health care debate: 46 million people without health insurance.

"Now, health insurance reform is one of those pillars that we need to build up that new foundation," said President Barack Obama at a town hall in New Hampshire. "I don't have to explain to you that nearly 46 million Americans don't have health insurance coverage today. In the wealthiest nation on Earth, 46 million of our fellow citizens have no coverage. They are just vulnerable. If something happens, they go bankrupt, or they don't get the care they need."

The number is important because of the big dollars involved in the health care bill. If the number of uninsured is significantly higher or lower, it could have a major impact on the cost.

That 46 million number -- which to be exact, is actually 45.7 million -- comes from the U.S. Census Bureau, which releases estimates of the uninsured yearly. That estimate is for 2007, and the data was released in 2008. (The 2008 data is scheduled for release on Sept. 10, 2009.)

The Census Bureau is not the only government agency that collects numbers on the uninsured, but it is often cited because it has the biggest sample, contacting about 97,500 households to ask about their insurance and other factors.

The Census Bureau calls these people each spring, and it asks if they were insured at any time during the previous year. They run through a list of questions of all the ways people could have been covered to make sure. If a person had insurance for even one day during the year, they are not counted as uninsured.

That seems like a nice, conservative way to measure, but the census number still has a few critics. Researchers have noticed that the census numbers tend to be a bit higher than some of the other government surveys collected for similar time periods. For example, in 2007, a survey from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services found the full-year uninsured population to be 40 million, not 45.7 million....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Obama Administration's Turnaround on DOMA

By Lisa Keen
Bay Windows


In a dramatic turnaround, a brief filed by the Obama Justice Department today states emphatically that the administration "does not support DOMA as a matter of policy, believes that it is discriminatory, and supports its repeal."

The brief was filed in Smelt v. U.S., a controversial federal lawsuit seeking to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act. In an earlier brief, filed in June, the Department of Justice asserted that DOMA addresses a legitimate need for the federal government to adopt "a cautious policy of federal neutrality towards a new form of marriage."

It asked the courts to uphold DOMA in order to protect the federal government’s "scarce resources" and its ability "to respond to new social phenomena one step at a time, and to adjust national policy incrementally." And it stated, emphatically, "DOMA does not discriminate against homosexuals in the provision of federal benefits."

In the August 17 brief, DOJ still suggests there may be "reasonable arguments" to uphold its constitutionality; however, the brief concentrates instead on defending the law by attacking the plaintiffs’ lawsuit on procedural grounds.

The White House also issued this statement today from President Obama: "I have long held that DOMA prevents LGBT couples from being granted equal rights and benefits. While we work with Congress to repeal DOMA, my Administration will continue to examine and implement measures that will help extend rights and benefits to LGBT couples under existing law....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Let the Money Laundering Begin

By Fred Karger
The Huffington Post


The organization trying to overturn Maine's same-sex marriage law, Stand for Marriage PAC recently turned in 100,000 signatures to place the question on the November ballot. These gay marriage opponents hope to repeal LD 1020 -- the law passed by the State Legislature and signed by the Governor allowing same-sex marriage in Maine.

Of the $343,689.50 raised to pay the Brighton, Michigan based National Petition Management, Inc. to collect the signatures, only $400, or a mere .001 of that total came from individuals. The remaining $343,289.50 was given by various religious organizations and James Dobson's Focus on the Family. The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) gave nearly half of that total, $160,000. The remainder came from Catholic organizations ($150,000) and James Dobson's Focus on the Family ($31,000).

It sure looks like they are trying to hide the donors in their latest effort to strip away marriage equality. There is no way these organizations like NOM and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland had all this money sitting in their treasuries (except for possibly Focus on the Family). They went out and raised it expressly for this campaign. It's very expensive to hire these signature gathering firms to collect 100,000 signatures in a short period of time."

National Organization for Marriage is a Mormon Front Group

There is an ongoing investigation into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church) by the California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC Case #08/735). The FPPC is looking into both the Church's lack of reporting its non-monetary contributions to Prop 8, and also whether NOM was, in fact, established as a front group by the Salt Lake City based Mormon Church. The Mormon Church has used this tactic in several states beginning in Hawaii in 1996....(Remainder.)

Read more...

WJC's Claim that Maddow Lies...Is...Well...a EFFIN' LIE!

By Media Matters

The Western Journalism Center -- the recently reconstituted right-wing group best known for perpetuating Vince Foster conspiracy theories during the Clinton administration -- has posted a video titled "Rachel Maddow Lies about MoveON.org," which purports to debunk Maddow's claim during the August 16 edition of "Meet the Press" that MoveOn never ran an ad comparing President Bush to Adolf Hitler.

But the WJC is the liar here. While the video includes a clip of something that appears to be a MoveOn ad comparing Bush to Hitler, at no point does the video note that it was submitted as part of a contest MoveOn ran in 2004 and never ran as a paid ad by MoveOn. Indeed, MoveOn specifically stated of that submission and a second similar one, "They will not appear on TV. We do not support the sentiment expressed in the two Hitler submissions." MoveOn later removed the ad from its website.

Most folks wouldn't have the courage to roll out such a ham-fisted piece of blatantly false agitprop, so the WJC has that going for it....(Original.)

Read more...

Fox News: Where the Truth Lies

By John Sherffius
Boulder Daily Camera



Read more...

Mike Huckabee Says Palestine Has No Right to Exist

By Transplanted Texan
MyDD


(On an unrelated note, I checked with Jerome today, and will start some regular lite blogging on weekdays. Hence this post.)

I had the chance to meet Mike Huckabee in January 2008. As Republicans go, I'd always been impressed - but from John McCain to Chuck Grassley, Republican stars have a way of losing their shine, and Huckabee is no exception. From Think Progress:
On a visit to Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories this week, former Arkansas governor and Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee supported Israel's right to build settlements on Palestinian land. He also stated his opposition to a two-state solution, saying that there is no room for a Palestinian state "in the middle of the Jewish homeland":
Speaking to a small group of foreign reporters in Jerusalem, Huckabee, seen as a possible Republican presidential candidate in 2012, said the international community should consider establishing a Palestinian state some place else.

"The question is should the Palestinians have a place to call their own? Yes, I have no problem with that. Should it be in the middle of the Jewish homeland? That's what I think has to be honestly assessed as virtually unrealistic."

So Huckabee joins Eric Cantor in slamming the American president while on foreign soil - a far cry from the way their party called Dubya's critics unpatriotic. You also have to wonder why Huck ignores history - the middle of the Jewish homeland? Well, yes, it is the Jewish homeland, but the Palestinian people have also been there for centuries upon centuries. It's not just a Jewish homeland, but rather a two-culture homeland....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Fox News Propped Up By Repiglickins, Southerners & KKK

By Mark
News Corpse


A new poll by Daily Kos/Research 2000 explores some interesting, but not entirely surprising, viewing patterns for the three top cable news networks. The poll’s most revealing results are those that break out party affiliation and regional viewing.

Overall, 25% of respondents watch Fox News at least once a week. That number includes 23% of Democrats and 14% of Independents. The obvious partisan standout is Republicans with 52% watching at least once a week. Similarly, regional viewing is heavily weighted to the south with 39% of southerners tuning in to Fox News. The rest of the nation is far less attracted to the right-wing network who draws significantly fewer viewers from the west (23%), the midwest (21%), and the northeast (13%). Also notable is the dismal performance of Fox amongst young voters (18-29) and minorities, all of whom report that they never watch Fox News in numbers exceeding 80%. In fact the groups of viewers who never watch watch Fox (party, region, ethnicity, age) are all above 50% except for Republicans (38%).

Republicans and southerners are also the most sharply segmented groups in the survey when queried on viewing of CNN and MSNBC. An examination of the data shows that these two groups are almost completely shut out any news source other than Fox News. To be sure, Democrats favor MSNBC and, to a lesser extent CNN, in greater numbers than other demographic breakouts, but the disparity is nowhere near as great as that for Republicans and southerners....(Remainder.)

Read more...

The Repiglickin Party is Turning into a Cult

By Johann Hari
The Huffington Post


Something strange has happened in America in the nine months since Barack Obama was elected. It has best been summarized by the comedian Bill Maher: "The Democrats have moved to the right, and the Republicans have moved to a mental hospital."

The election of Obama -- a center-left black man -- as a successor to George W. Bush has scrambled the core American right's view of their country. In their gut, they saw the US as a white-skinned, right-wing nation forever shaped like Sarah Palin. When this image was repudiated by a majority of Americans in a massive landslide, it simply didn't compute. How could this have happened? How could the cry of "Drill, baby, drill" have been beaten by a supposedly big government black guy? So a streak that has always been there in the American right's world-view -- to deny reality, and argue against a demonic phantasm of their own creation -- has swollen. Now it is all they can see.

Since Obama's rise, the US right has been skipping frantically from one fantasy to another, like a person in the throes of a mental breakdown. It started when they claimed he was a secret Muslim, and -- at the same time -- that he was a member of a black nationalist church that hated white people. Then, once these arguments were rejected and Obama won, they began to argue he was born in Kenya and secretly smuggled into the United States as a baby, and the Hawaiian authorities conspired to fake his US birth certificate. So he is ineligible to rule and the office of President should pass to... the Republican runner-up, John McCain....(Remainder.)

Read more...

“Believers” Invest in the Gospel of Getting Rich



By Laurie Goodstein
The News York Times
Photo:  Michael Stravato (NYT)


FORT WORTH — Onstage before thousands of believers weighed down by debt and economic insecurity, Kenneth and Gloria Copeland and their all-star lineup of "prosperity gospel" preachers delighted the crowd with anecdotes about the luxurious lives they had attained by following the Word of God.

Private airplanes and boats. A motorcycle sent by an anonymous supporter. Vacations in Hawaii and cruises in Alaska. Designer handbags. A ring of emeralds and diamonds.

"God knows where the money is, and he knows how to get the money to you," preached Mrs. Copeland, dressed in a crisp pants ensemble like those worn by C.E.O.'s.

Even in an economic downturn, preachers in the "prosperity gospel" movement are drawing sizable, adoring audiences. Their message — that if you have sufficient faith in God and the Bible and donate generously, God will multiply your offerings a hundredfold — is reassuring to many in hard times.

The preachers barely acknowledged the recession, though they did say it was no excuse to curtail giving. "Fear will make you stingy," Mr. Copeland said.

But the offering buckets came up emptier than in some previous years, said those who have attended before....(Remainder.)

Read more...

How Tough is Our President?

By Robert Reich
Robert Reich's Blog


Latest word from the White House is that the President still supports a public option but is also standing by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius's remark last weekend that a public insurance plan is "not the essential element" of health-care reform. So where, exactly, is the White House on the public option? Just about where it is on the question of whether it agreed with Big Pharma to bar Medicare from using its bargaining clout to get lower drug prices -- or didn't. In other words, we don't know.

Universal health care is President Obama's biggest issue, and he needs strong public support if he's going to overcome the vested money interests in Washington. Which brings us to the question of where the people who voted for Obama stand on all this.

As I just wrote in The American Prospect, my friend Fred voted for Obama and trusts him to do the right thing. "He's the brightest and most decent person who's occupied the Oval Office in my lifetime," Fred says. His trust for the man extends to Obama's agenda. "I don't have time to wade into the details of the economy or health care or climate change legislation or anything else, but I know he's got my interests at heart."...(Remainder.)

Read more...

Assault Rifle Interview Outside Obama Event in Pheonix was a Planned by Freeper Radio Host

By Versha Sharma
Talking Points Memo


Ernest Hancock, the online radio host who interviewed the man with the assault rifle outside yesterday's Obama event in Arizona, today stated that the whole event was actually planned in advance. Watch the video below.

Hancock appeared on Rick Sanchez's CNN show this afternoon. After explaining a few details about the interview, including the tidbit that he's known 'Chris' (the man with the AR-15) for two years because of their mutual work for Ron Paul, the CNN host said "the more we look into this, the more it appears that it was really planned."

"Oh, it's more planned than you think," Hancock responded. He then let loose with a string of details, including how Hancock contacted the Phoenix police department days before the event and how he was partially motivated to do so because of the controversy surrounding William Kostric, the man armed with a gun outside of Obama's town hall in New Hampshire last week.




(Remainder.)

Read more...

Scalia: Innocence Doesn't Matter

By Vincent Rossmeier
Salon.com


Summer is a slow time in Washington. Congress is in recess, President Obama is on vacation and everyone still left in the city is realizing all over again that the place was built on a swamp. The Supreme Court is in recess, too, and in the past that's usually meant that news from the court is virtually non-existent.

On Monday, however, the Supreme Court took the atypical step of issuing a major ruling during its summer break, ordering a federal trial court in Georgia to review the case of death row inmate Troy Davis to decide whether new evidence, not available at trial, establishes Davis' innocence.

What makes the case all the more unique is that to receive the ruling, Davis' attorney filed an original writ of habeas corpus, which skips the lower courts and goes directly to the Supreme Court. As Justice Antonin Scalia pointed out in a dissent he wrote against Monday's decision, the Court has not made such a ruling "in nearly 50 years."

However, the three Justices who openly favored the decision seemed to think there was enough question about Davis' guilt to review the case. Davis was convicted 18 years ago for the 1989 murder of a Savannah, Ga. police officer. Attorneys for Davis argued in their appeal that since that time, seven of the witnesses who helped to condemn Davis have recanted on their testimony. The case has drawn international attention, with former President Carter, Pope Benedict and Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Tutu questioning the merits of Davis' conviction....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Rep. Gingley Wants Americans to Show Up Armed to Public Meetings

Read more...

Radio Speech is Not Free Speech

By Sue Wilson
The Brad Blog


On August 11, 2009, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, in a unanimous vote, became the first elected body in the United States to stand up to Hate Radio. Their resolution urges "the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to conduct a comprehensive investigation on hate speech in the media, allowing public participation via public hearings, and asks the NTIA [National Telecommunications and Information Administration] to update its 1993 report on the Role of Telecommunications in Hate Crimes."

For two years, San Francisco's Hispanic/Latino Anti-Defamation Coalition (HLADC) has been trying to get some traction on this issue. They've staged rallies against Michael Savage, worked with the Media Alliance, Common Cause and Broadcast Blues to protest hate radio, and supported the National Hispanic Media Coalition's campaign to convince the FCC and NTIA to act. But HLADC leader Aurora Grajedas saw she could better effect national change by working with her own city's board of supervisors. Acting locally is a good lesson for all activists.

Still, there is resistance to any such study, as opponents charge these groups are trying to shut down the first amendment. But let us be clear, Radio Speech is not Free Speech. I will stand by Glenn Beck's right to stand on the street corner and say illegal immigrants should be made into a new fuel called "Mexinol." I may not like it, but I stand by his right to say it. But there is a difference between shouting on the street corner and broadcasting all over the country.

Broadcasting pioneers witnessed the power of propaganda with radio Tokyo Rose, so they worked with government on two key broadcast regulations. First, to qualify for a license to broadcast on the public airwaves, stations had to serve the public interest, which became defined as local news, political debates, equal time, and a rule that said no personal attacks. Second, one person could own just 6 radio stations, nationwide. There were a lot of "street corners" in radio....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Boise & Olsen to go After 'Yes on 8' Campaign

By Gabriel Arana
Box Turtle Bulletin


I have been following the federal challenge to Prop 8, Perry v. Schwarzenegger, and thought I would give BTB readers an update (there’s not much in the rest of the LGBT press).

As you might remember, former Bush v. Gore foes Boies and Olson sparked controversy among gay legal rights groups after teaming up to file a federal challenge to Prop. 8 in California District Court. Organizations like Lambda Legal, which have spent years focusing on incremental legal wins are afraid it’s not the right time to put all the movement’s chips on the table, but seeing as Boies and Olson are going ahead anyway, they want in on the action and have asked to join the suit.

Judge Walker is set to hear opposing arguments tomorrow over whether they should be allowed in, a motion Boies and Olson have opposed. My guess is that the judge will allow Lambda Legal, the City of San Francisco, and similar organization to join the suit, or at least that’s what I hope; these organizations have been fighting the good fight long before the fame-mongering pair came on the scene.

Today, all parties to the suit filed another round of “case management statements,” proposals that outline what the trial will cover, what legal questions will be addressed, and which sort of evidence will be gathered and presented.  What is interesting about these statements is that the case is shaping up to be much broader than the state challenge to Prop. 8, which hinged on the technical distinction between an “amendment” and a “revision.”...(Remainder.)

Read more...

Rep. Roy Blunt (R-MO & GOP Senate Candidate): Hypocrite Extraordinaire

By Joe Sudbay
AMERICANblog


Several weeks ago, when the Mark Sanford affair story blew up, there was an article in The Examiner about Roy Blunt and his affair with a lobbyist, who is now his wife:
Rep. Roy Blunt, the former House Majority Leader who is now a GOP candidate for Governor in Missouri, is no stranger to scandal, having gone through an affair, a public divorce and remarriage under the scrutiny of the press.
Well, that line was in the original article, then it wasn't. You can see my post about this here. Bottom line is that Blunt, a typical GOP hypocrite, cheated on his wife with a lobbyist, divorced the wife, then married the lobbyist.

You'd think someone with that kind of shady background -- and any sense of decency -- wouldn't turn around and use religion to oppose LGBT equality. But, Roy Blunt sent a letter to a constituent about ENDA and using religion as an excuse to oppose the bill:
H.R. 3017, the Employee Non-Discrimination Act or 2009, was introduced by Congressman Barney Frank on June 24, 2009. This measure would prohibit certain entities from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender transition. These entities include employment agencies, labor organizations, and training programs. Furthermore, this legislation would prohibit the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission from collecting statistics on the sexual orientation of the covered entities. Currently, this bill has been referred to House Committees on Education and Labor, and in addition to the Committees on House Administration, Oversight and Government Reform, and the Judiciary.

This bill creates a legal quagmire for employees who practice, or even acknowledge, their religious beliefs depending on where they happen to work, and subject to judicial interpretation. In the process, it erodes a basic, fundamental right bestowed upon us by our Creator and a right guaranteed to every American under the U.S. Constitution. As a former president of a Baptist college in Missouri, supporters of this bill have been quick to assure me that it’s most onerous provisions would not apply to that school. But no such exemption is available for Christian bookstore owners, as an example, or any other small business in which people of faith and deep religious conviction are relied upon as an integral part of the workforce.

(Remainder.)

Read more...

Bank Taunted Gay African-American Man

By Julie Bolcer
Advocate


 The New Jersey state division of civil rights announced a probable cause finding on Monday in the case of a gay African-American man who alleged that supervisors at the Bank of New York taunted him because of his sexual orientation and race, then fired him when he complained, reports Bloomberg.com.

The state agency described the allegations as "troubling," including charges that superiors at the bank’s Secaucus facility called Paul Nathan derogatory names and that someone posted a disparaging photo with a caption threatening to sodomize him with a stick. Witnesses support the allegations.

Nathan worked as a mailroom machine operator from April 2000 to August 2007. He claims that an assistant manager started the harassment in 2004, followed by a vice president. Part of the harassment allegedly included being assigned with an African-American coworker to a room called “the plantation,” where tasks included heavy lifting, according to the Cliffview Pilot.

Nathan filed a complaint in 2006 charging discrimination based on race and sexual orientation, and he was fired in August 2007....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Health Care Mobs = Swift Boat Vets

By Eric Boehlert
Media Matters


Here we go again.

During August's summer daze, right-wing mini-mobs (egged on by corporate interests) have run wild at town hall meetings, propagating all kinds of smears and misinformation in an effort to derail an important Democratic campaign. Yet the mini-mob members have been treated as deeply important newsmakers by the press during a slow summer news month.

Sound familiar? Recall August 2004, when the right-wing Swift Boat Veterans for Truth (egged on by corporate interests) stole a month's worth of campaign headlines by propagating all kinds of smears and misinformation in an attempt to derail an important Democratic campaign. Yet they were treated as deeply important newsmakers by the press during a slow summer news month.

Honestly, the only thing missing this time around is a crackpot, best-selling book. In 2004, the Swifties used the release of Unfit for Command to launch their media-based smear campaign. This summer, it could have been something like ObamaScare: How Liberal Health Care Will Destroy America. (The Swifties' right-wing publisher must be kicking itself over the missed marketing opportunity.)

But what has been perfectly consistent is the way the press has, again, fallen for a right-wing smear campaign and dressed it up as news. Just as with the Swifties, the press has turned over its summer coverage to a band of agitators spreading misinformation. Five summers ago, the Swift Boat Vets helped hijack the election. They lied about documents, they lied about eyewitness, and they lied about their partisan affiliations and connections. For several crucial weeks during the campaign, journalists turned away from the pile-up of Swift Boat falsehoods and contradictions, rarely daring to call the Swift Boat attack out for what it really was -- a hoax. Too spooked by the GOP Noise Machine and its charge of liberal media bias, the press propped up the Vets as serious men and showered them with attention....(Remainder.)

Read more...

Newsbusters' Clearly Doesn't Understand Polling

By Jamison Foser
Media Matters


Newsbusters' Tom Blumer sees some kind of liberal media conspiracy of silence in the lack of media coverage of a Gallup poll finding that more people self-identify as "conservative" than "liberal" at the state level as well as nationally.  Blumer seems to think this finding has great significance, though Gallup provides no historical data for comparison, so we don't know which way things are trending. 

And, as I've mentioned a time or two in the past, such labels are so imprecise and meaningless to many if not most Americans that these self-ID questions are of limited value.  Indeed, the Gallup poll itself provides evidence that these questions don't mean much: Gallup finds that even in Massachusetts and Vermont more people self-identify as "conservative" than "liberal."

But Blumer thinks this one-off poll that is quite consistent with years and years worth of national-level polling is hugely important.  Maybe that's because he doesn't really "get" how polling works.  Here's Blumer:
The margins may not be "statistically significant," but the reported result still shows conservatives on top in HI (+5), VT (+1) and MA (+1). I also have to wonder how you can have a 5-point or more margin of error in a poll of 160,000 people. [Emphasis added]
(Remainder.)

Read more...

Ignorant Wingnut Bitch Yells "Heil Hitler" to Jewish Man at Las Vegas Town Hall

Read more...

Stephen Colbert and Rep Jared Polis Do a Beer Bong

The Colbert Report Mon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Even Better-er Know a District - Colorado's 2nd - Jared Polis
www.colbertnation.com
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor Health Care Protests

Read more...

Raging Apartment Fire

Across the street from us, an apartment burst into flames.  Ok, maybe not an inferno, but it certainly was dramatic.



Read more...

Copyright

All material is the copyright of the respective authors. The purveyor of this blog has made and attempt, whenever possible, to credit the appropriate copyright holder.

  © Blogger template Newspaper by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP