23
Dec
11

go west, young man

President Obama signs the payroll tax cut extension in the White House Oval Office

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President Obama wishes members of the media a Merry Christmas on leaving for Hawaii

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399 Responses to “go west, young man”


  1. 1 isonprize
    December 23, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Yeah baby!!

  2. 2 isonprize
    December 23, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    What, I really am first?!! WooT President Obama gets to be with his girls on Christmas. OOOOh, the Rethugs are gonna be mad ALL NEXT YEAR!!!!

    Get ready, get ready, get ready!!!

  3. December 23, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    Wooooot!! He looks really happy!

    • 4 Eleroy
      December 23, 2011 at 10:57 pm

      Compliments of the season to all my fellow proud Obots!!!

      Blessings to our spectacular President and First lady and their wonderful family as they re-unite. May they have a restful, peaceful, love, joy & laughter filled holiday and come back refreshed and revved up!!!

  4. 5 collegekay
    December 23, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    He looks so happy and cute! Have a wonderful vacation Mr. President.

  5. 8 Linda
    December 23, 2011 at 2:19 pm

    Grinning ear to ear…..

  6. 9 lovingandlaughing
    December 23, 2011 at 2:19 pm

    Oh Chips, you are the best! How are we all going to deal with not having our daily TOD posts during PBO’s so richly deserved vacation. Chips, Do you think you’ll still post during the next week? We are all going to be in withdrawal!

  7. December 23, 2011 at 2:21 pm

    What is that, a deer statue? Scared the hell outta me for a minute :shock:

  8. 32 desertflower
    December 23, 2011 at 2:21 pm

    That voter fraud the Republicans harp on, isn’t coming from where they SAY it is!

    http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal/2011_12/another_gop_official_caught_co034290.php

  9. December 23, 2011 at 2:21 pm

    I know this was mentioned in a previous thread, but, yes, the world is watching. Top headline on the BBC News site:

    “Obama beats Congress in tax fight.”

    • 37 utaustinliberal
      December 23, 2011 at 3:48 pm

      Oh the world is definitely watching. Sometimes they pay more attention than voters in this country. I was watching CBS’s The Early Show this morning and a lot of American voters vacationing in Hawaii had no idea why PBO’s vacation was delayed and that he was fighting for them. Some guy who would benefit from $1000 in his paycheck said all he hears is payroll tax cuts and he knows it’s a bad thing. The reporter had to explain the benefits of a payroll tax cut and when the ignorant voter realized it would benefit him he began expressing thanks to PBO. The only people who knew why PBO’s vacation was delayed were two Canadian women on vacation in Hawaii and they said they pay VERY close attention to what happens in America because it drastically affects the economies of other countries and they were thankful to PBO for fighting for the middleclass.

      So, yep the world is definitely watching.

      • December 23, 2011 at 6:37 pm

        Geez that guy was a moron. What part of “payroll tax cut” sounds like a bad thing? OY!

        • December 23, 2011 at 8:57 pm

          Right! The desperately unimformed. :roll:

          • 40 Puddin'
            December 23, 2011 at 11:56 pm

            I had a conversation last night with a 40-something client who has been out of work for the better part of this year…I told her (she is a repub) PBO and the DEMS fought to keep unemployment benefits at 99 weeks…her beloved repubs want to only give her 59 weeks…she didn’t KNOW…I told her there is no excuse for her not knowing…I told her that her beloved repubs didn’t care for her no more than they care for me (a black middle class small business owner)…I had to tell her that her beloved repubs only care about the rich….she dodn’t know!

  10. 44 Ceb
    December 23, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    Look at that grin and the pep in his step. So glad that he is outta here!

    Mele Kalekemaka and and aloha, Mr. President. Godspeed.

  11. 45 desertflower
    December 23, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    Can’t wait to see family pics :) He looks wonderful. Job well done.

    • 46 luci1119
      December 23, 2011 at 6:53 pm

      Yes, our President looks sooooooooooo very happy, because It’s a good accomplishment, bless his heart :-)

      But I really do want to comment on the Palin Christmas card, Lol, I almost fell off my chair laughing at *BO* peeing on her leg, that’s was too funny.

      • 47 anniebella
        December 23, 2011 at 9:45 pm

        luci1119, I had myself a good ole laugh to when I saw Bo peeing on Palin. These people are so dam stupid, trying to make an issue out of Bo being on the Obama Christmas card.

  12. 48 Ashley
    December 23, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    He looks so happy I know he can’t wait to get to his family and the beach.

  13. December 23, 2011 at 2:24 pm

    You know, I think PBO’s kind of happy to be heading for Hawaii:

    Safe journey Mr President.

    • 50 Cha
      December 23, 2011 at 3:26 pm

      And, if we could see the faces on the First Lady Michelle, Malia, and Sasha! Thanks Chips, and a Big Aloha to you and your TOD Fam.

      • 51 anniebella
        December 23, 2011 at 6:16 pm

        I hope Bo is going to Hawaii to. POTUS does have a big nice smile on his face. have a safe trip Mr. President and I hope you and your family have a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year.

    • 56 luci1119
      December 23, 2011 at 6:54 pm

      Yeahhhhhhhhhh, he Is :-) :D

    • 57 DreamChaser57
      December 23, 2011 at 8:09 pm

      Safe journey and Godspeed indeed. What I find so incredibly compelling is that the president was willing to selflessly sacrifice his precious time with his beloved family if need be? He truly loves the people. How endearing – the operative word in public servant, is truly servant for this president. Love it!

    • 58 GGail
      December 23, 2011 at 10:59 pm

      He’s saying to himself and to us; “see I tole y’all I got this!”

  14. December 23, 2011 at 2:26 pm

    ♥ ♥ ♥ Good Day Chips! Good Day TOD Family! ♥ ♥ ♥

    Barack Obama Quote O’ The Day

    Aloha!

    –from Remarks by President Obama on the Payroll Tax Cut, December 23, 2011

    Have a great afternoon, everyone! ;-)

  15. 62 Insomniac
    December 23, 2011 at 2:26 pm

    Excellent! Have a safe flight to Hawai’i, Mr. President.

    Found this by accident just now…http://youtu.be/cEJFyFgfRgs

    Enjoy!

  16. 69 jacquelineoboomer
    December 23, 2011 at 2:28 pm

    Bet you $10K the President ripped off the jacket and tie, the minute he got aboard AF1 !!

    Merry Christmas, Mr. President!

  17. 76 defytheodds
    December 23, 2011 at 2:29 pm

    “It may not have been politically the smartest thing in the world.” – Boehner

    You’re right Mr. Speaker; and Aloha to you! – PBO

    “Aloha,” says Pres. Obama, with the sounds of Marine One audible from the briefing room, after wishing everyone — including the press, but especially the military — Merry Christmas and happy holidays.

    Thank you & Godspeed Mr. President, please have a safe journey to be with your family… May the Holy Spirits continue smiling upon you and your family in 2012 and forevermore. … Amen.

    “Happy holidays Chips; you’re quick today.” :)

  18. December 23, 2011 at 2:29 pm

    I hope Bo was already on the plane…

    • 79 SUE DUVALL SMITH
      December 23, 2011 at 2:37 pm

      OH THEY WON’T LEAVE ‘THE BO’ BEHIND!!!!

      • 80 Tally
        December 23, 2011 at 3:03 pm

        They have to leave Bo on the mainland because of all the animal quarantine rules in Hawaii.

        • 81 desertflower
          December 23, 2011 at 3:11 pm

          Huge! One of the reasons why my husband and I turned down being stationed in Hawaii when he was in the Navy. Not leaving my babies to be quarantined for 6 months!

        • December 23, 2011 at 3:30 pm

          Helloooooooo Tally, read yesterday that Bo will have no problems this year, he’ll be waved straight through based on clear tests from last year – woooooot! Or, rather, woooooooof!

        • 85 JoJothecat
          December 23, 2011 at 4:28 pm

          Tally,

          I read yesterday on one of the threads that Bo would not have to be quarantined. Maybe someone can post why again. From what I remember he had all his shots and all the paper work was complete and because he is just visiting for less than 90 days he would not have to be quarantined.

  19. December 23, 2011 at 2:30 pm

    A bit of space news. Not very heartening for astronauts on the ISS.

    Russia’s recent poor launch record has continued with yet another Soyuz rocket failure.

    This time, a Soyuz-2 vehicle failed to put a communications satellite into orbit after lifting away from the country’s Plesetsk spaceport.

    Debris is said to have re-entered the Earth’s atmosphere near the western Siberian town of Tobolsk.

    In August, a Soyuz failure on a mission to resupply the space station led to a six-week suspension of flights.

    Story here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-16317099

  20. December 23, 2011 at 2:36 pm

    Ok, this article is a MUST READ for making sense of the 2011 revolutions.

    Eric Hobsbawm on 2011: ‘It reminds me of 1848…’

    The renowned historian Eric Hobsbawm has watched the revolutions of 2011 with excitement – and notes that it’s now the middle class, not the working class, that is making waves.

    “It was an enormous joy to discover once again that it’s possible for people to get down in the streets, to demonstrate, to overthrow governments,” says EJ Hobsbawm at the close of a year of revolutionary upheaval in the Arab world.

    …”It reminds me of 1848 – another self-propelled revolution which started in one country then spread all over the continent in a short time.”

    For those who once crowded Tahrir Square and are now worried about the fate of their revolution, he has a word of comfort.

    “Two years after 1848, it looked as if it had all failed. In the long run, it hadn’t failed. A good deal of liberal advances had been made. So it was an immediate failure but a longer term partial success – though no longer in the form of a revolution.”

    2012 is going to be a momentous year. Hold on to your hats, kids.

    • December 23, 2011 at 2:37 pm

      And this.

      The movement dates back, he argues, to Barack Obama’s election campaign, which successfully mobilised otherwise politically inactive young people, largely through the internet.

      • December 23, 2011 at 7:43 pm

        LL, I see another avid BBC fan. I posted that piece here coupla threads back.

      • 90 DreamChaser57
        December 23, 2011 at 8:25 pm

        People [see foolish] have wondered why POTUS was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize – others readily acknowledge his utter magnificence, his sheer brilliance, and that he stands and embodies principles that far transcend the American presidency

  21. 91 SUE DUVALL SMITH
    December 23, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    PBO IS DOIN’ THE ALOHA HUSTLE….OUT OF TOWN…GOING TO HAVE THE VACATION HE DESERVES!

  22. 92 jacquelineoboomer
    December 23, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    Love the blue skies that were shining on President Obama, as he departed!

  23. December 23, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    Thanks for pictures chip.

    Btw- I am on my new treadmill I got for x-mas.
    How do you like me now?

  24. December 23, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    Dow Jones up 91 points. I hope those masters of the universe realize just who prevented the economy from suffering a major blow this week.

  25. December 23, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    Michelle Bachmann has lost the “gay robot” vote.

  26. December 23, 2011 at 2:59 pm

    The green groups reacted to the payroll deal in fiction-

    GREENS ON KEYSTONE: FINGERS CROSSED: “The administration’s promise to deny this permit, if fulfilled, will be one of the rare pieces of good news for the climate in a year which saw America shatter all records for billion-dollar weather disasters,” activist Bill McKibben said in a statement. “The president campaigned hard in 2008 on trying to slow the climate crisis, and this would be a strong sign he meant what he said.”

    What about the EPA mercury rules this week?
    Stupid green groups can’t give credit where credit is due!

    • December 23, 2011 at 6:53 pm

      Uhm, he didn’t promise to deny the permit. They said an expedited process might kill it. I wish people wouldn’t exaggerate what was said. Its best to keep protesting and spreading the facts rather than wait and see.

  27. December 23, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    If every a man was born to be President!

    Rudyard Kipling

    If

    If you can keep your head when all about you
    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
    If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
    But make allowance for their doubting too;
    If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
    Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
    Or, being hated, don’t give way to hating,
    And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

    If you can dream – and not make dreams your master;
    If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim;
    If you can meet with triumph and disaster
    And treat those two imposters just the same;
    If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
    Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
    And stoop and build ‘em up with wornout tools;

    If you can make one heap of all your winnings
    And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
    And lose, and start again at your beginnings
    And never breath a word about your loss;
    If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
    To serve your turn long after they are gone,
    And so hold on when there is nothing in you
    Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on”;

    If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
    Or walk with kings – nor lose the common touch;
    If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
    If all men count with you, but none too much;
    If you can fill the unforgiving minute
    With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run –
    Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
    And – which is more – you’ll be a Man my son!

  28. 109 auni
    December 23, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    I am going to pray that the entire world just stays calm during our Dear President’s vacation. He needs this time off without having to deal with any major problems. As much as I want to see pictures of the First Family on vacation–I kind of hope there won’t be any available after the photos of him landing–I hope they get some privacy.

    • 110 Pamela
      December 23, 2011 at 9:12 pm

      I share this prayer with you, auni, (and all of us here, I am certain!)

      • 111 JoJothecat
        December 23, 2011 at 10:48 pm

        I agree, it’s seems we’ve had back to back years of tradgetites at the end of the year that made the Presidemt end his vacation. Lets pray for no major upsets – man made or natural for the next two weeks.

  29. 112 Tally
    December 23, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    Besty – just in case you missed my reply on the other thread:

    Betsy – up on the top of your screen menu on the right, just right of the sound/volume icon, is on the Character Viewer icon – click that, click SHOW CHARACTER VIEWER and it will come up.

    At the bottom of the Character Viewer, on the right, is a little search window with a magnifying glass, that says Description & code. Click in that and type – heart – then hit enter and it will search for it. Once you find what you want (there are several) click on it, then click INSERT button on the bottom left.

    On the bottom left is a little favorites button – click that and you can click ADD TO FAVORITES so you can find it faster next time.

  30. 115 isonprize
    December 23, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    I just LOVE the way he said “Aloha” like he’s been waiting to say that for a few days now. HA, They keep underestimating him.

  31. 117 auni
    December 23, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    Have you noticed how beautiful the Oval Office is now? The refurbishing that was done under this administration has sure improved the way it looks. Having that beautiful man at the desk hasn’t hurt either!

    • 118 utaustinliberal
      December 23, 2011 at 4:01 pm

      Barbara Walters commented on how beautiful the White House and it’s accessories and furnishings are since the Obamas moved in. She said it was nice in previous administrations but it’s really gorgeous now. Gotta love POTUS and FLOTUS’s sense of style.

    • December 23, 2011 at 6:55 pm

      Yes. I wasn’t wild about it at first but better pictures have been posted and you can really see the great colors and how classy it looks. I did note from the beginning that it was a VAST improvement over the previous administrations.

  32. December 23, 2011 at 3:20 pm

    What about that ? When the Prez left the podium?

    The way I take it is – that is Iraqs business not ours!

  33. 124 Linda
    December 23, 2011 at 3:21 pm

    Is there video of Romney not knowing how to pump gas ? They were just laughing about it on Martin’s show.

    • 125 utaustinliberal
      December 23, 2011 at 4:04 pm

      I saw the video of him pumping gas and he looked mighty awkward as though that was his first time doing so. Everytime Willard tries to show voters he’s “just like them” it results in him having egg on his face. Everyone on the panel mocked him because it was so obvious he did that for the cameras. Ugh!

  34. December 23, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    EPA PUBLISHES BOILER MACT RULE: In Friday’s Federal Register, the EPA is publishing its proposed emissions rule for industrial boilers, also known as boiler MACT. This starts the 60-day countdown clock for public comments; EPA is accepting comment on the rule to speak to changes made since it was originally finalized in March. Get your copy here: http://bit.ly/tVrfDe


    And the pubs go crazy!

  35. December 23, 2011 at 3:25 pm

    Happy Holidays to all of my TOD’s friends:-)

    I am grateful for this place, where we gather in support of our wonderful President..

    I am grateful for all the tears and joy shared by so many….

    I am grateful for all the brilliant minds that teach me a thing or two…..You’ve been my comfort from outside media….

    I can’t say enough…or can I find words for my gratitude for Ms.Chips….You make my world shine a little brighter EVERY SINGLE DAY!!

    THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!! THANK YOU!!!! and Merry Christmas to all of you ~ much love ~ Kasai

    • 130 desertflower
      December 23, 2011 at 3:47 pm

      Beautiful thoughts, kasai…from the heart :) Hugs to you. Love you back.

    • 131 Dudette
      December 23, 2011 at 3:47 pm

      That was beautiful Kasai. Thank YOU and a very Merry Christmas to you and yours!

    • 132 JoJothecat
      December 23, 2011 at 4:03 pm

      God Bless you Kasai, Merry Xmas to you too and all my TOD family!

    • December 23, 2011 at 4:34 pm

      Kasai–May all those good wishes be returned to you. We do sustain each other through ups and downs and the challenges next year are going to stretch all those strong bonds we’ve built. But now is the time to bask in the love of family and friends and enjoy the holiday to the fullest. Cheers!!

    • 134 MTmarilyn
      December 23, 2011 at 6:07 pm

      I am so thankful for this place too. You have put into words what I feel. This place is a haven for so many of us. Have a wonderful blessed Merry Christmas, kasai and all!!!!

      • December 23, 2011 at 10:24 pm

        Thanks Kasai for your lovely thoughts. I totally concur with you. We are such a beautiful family here, and our thanks go to Chips and each family member who brings to us all each day a bundle of joy through intellect, caring hearts, and a healthy serving of respect.

        I feel so blessed to be here and to know that I am a part of this beautiful family. May all of you here have a most lovely celebration of these wonderful holidays. May your family, friends, and more friends that we have met here be a part of our thankfulness during this beautiful season.

        We are a very special team in that our support for our beloved hardworking POTUS is totally committed to keeping his back, praying, and meditating with good energy for him, his Cabinet, and all of his staff. We are one with our President.

        May he and our First Family enjoy the beauty of Hawaii, the fun and relaxation with friends, and we all know that he will still be working even through this is the holidays. That is who he is. I love him for that. As our First Grandmother stated it once, “He is the hardest working man I know.” That is a beautiful thought coming from your mother-in-law and she sees it up close and personal.

        Have a wonderful Christmas, Mr. President and our beautiful First Lady. We love you all.HZ

    • December 23, 2011 at 11:25 pm

      thanks Kasai – Merry Christmas to you too and Happy New Year!!! :-)

  36. 137 Squarepeg
    December 23, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    You gotta see this funny tweet from the great George Takei:

  37. 141 auni
    December 23, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    Oh kasai–that was a beautiful post. I echo every word! I saw over on Huffington Po that WH reporters are complaining about mean treatment from the WH press office–oh pleeese.

  38. 143 Dudette
    December 23, 2011 at 3:42 pm

    “Aloha”… wink and roll out. Don’tcha love it? That’s My President!

  39. December 23, 2011 at 3:45 pm

    uh oh!

    BREAKING: BOEHNER, CANTOR IN STANDOFF WITH CAPITOL POLICE

    http://www.democratsforprogress.com/2011/12/23/breaking-boehner-cantor-in-standoff-with-capitol-police/

    Unconfirmed reports indicate that Capitol police have called for a hostage negotiator to respond to an ongoing situation in the Capitol building in which House Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor have barricaded themselves in a conference room, demanding that they be joined there by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell along with President Obama and the Obama family dog Bo. Authorities have confirmed that the eight Republican House members appointed by the ‘Cincinnati Cinnamon Stick’ to the conference committee which he was expecting to negotiate the pending tax holiday legislation with Senate Democrats are with the Speaker and Majority Leader, but it is not certain if they are there voluntarily or have been taken hostage like the rest of the country.

    Read on for more of this developing story—or don’t….

    Reportedly, Boehner is crying, “Obama–uh–I mean, President Obama, don’t go…help meeee!” Poor fella.

  40. 148 desertflower
    December 23, 2011 at 3:50 pm

    ALERT! ALERT! ALERT! Some Republicans could be coming to their senses!!!

    http://thepoliticalcarnival.net/2011/12/23/republican-colleagues-have-told-sen-harry-reid-privately-that-they-could-support-raising-taxes-on-the-wealthy/

    Reid said several Senate Republican colleagues have told him privately that they could support raising taxes on the wealthy to defray the budget impact.

    The quick move by Reid to float the millionaire tax suggests Democrats are prepared to play hardball with the GOP in the next round of talks on the payroll package.

    Happy Damn Day!

  41. December 23, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    BREAK OUT THE POPCORN: When people on the Fox Business Channel complained that “The Muppets” was brainwashing kids against the oil industry, it got Talia Buford wondering: How much energy-themed indoctrination is Hollywood pumping onto the big screen, anyway? A lot, it turns out. Whether the villain of the day is a puppet-hating oil baron, an anti-ghost-hunting EPA agent or an interstellar crew of tree-burning commandos, energy and the environment are golden topics for screenwriters looking for ways to put our favorite characters in jeopardy. Talia brings you a handy viewing guide: http://politico.pro/tiLpDh

  42. December 23, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    — The Texas grid’s year ahead will depend on the weather, electricity demand and EPA’s Cross-State Air Pollution Rule. NYT: http://nyti.ms/w4aWOJ

  43. December 23, 2011 at 4:11 pm

    Oh Yeah! More Good News:

  44. December 23, 2011 at 4:16 pm

    Trump just registered as an independent!

    Hmmm!

  45. 167 desertflower
    December 23, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    Michelle Bachmann is on the warpath about the extension of the payroll tax cut, saying this is being paid for by taking money from Social Security. Excuse me, but I thought that this was paid for through higher fees by people buying homes with the help of Fannie/Freddie. Someone correct me if I’m wrong, otherwise this is being sent to Attackwatch….

    • 168 Linda
      December 23, 2011 at 4:19 pm

      You are correct….she is clueless. Seems to me she could have objected if she wanted to. When is the last time she even voted ?

      • 169 desertflower
        December 23, 2011 at 4:27 pm

        OOOOOOOOOOO…I guess she hasn’t cast a vote since August 1st…and some people in MN are NOT HAPPY!

        http://www.rippleinstillwater.com/2011/09/michele-bachmann-owes-her-6th-district.html Unhappy enough to throw her sorry lying ass to the curb? Minnesota, YOU DESERVE BETTER!

        • December 23, 2011 at 4:42 pm

          Please, please let this woman lost her House seat. She has shown absolutely no interest in serving her district and she’s succeeded in making a national fool of herself. Surely somebody can run against her and win.

          • 171 Betsy
            December 23, 2011 at 5:21 pm

            I would feel that I had died and gone to heaven if Bachman was defeated by Terryl Clark (if she runs again) in 2012.

            • 172 Walking_on_ Sunshine
              December 23, 2011 at 9:44 pm

              Terryl Clark is running again in 2012 but not in Bachman’s district. It’s a crying shame that she didn’t win last time. She was infinitely more capable than Michelle Bachman. I hope the people who voted for the candidate with the R by the name are having buyers remorse. We can only hope that the level of embarrassment is high enough to overcome party affiliation. Minnesota does deserve better.

              • 173 Betsy
                December 24, 2011 at 3:18 am

                That’s good to know. I hope she wins. She seemed very capable. I don’t understand her constituents not seeing how batshit crazy Bachman is. I wish Clark every success.

        • 174 susanne
          December 23, 2011 at 5:04 pm

          love the article–so well researched, argued, and written. then they throw in the video ‘gimme my money back’–absolutely wonderful. thanks for posting this link.

          and let me take this opportunity to thank all the tod family for your good work in bringing optimism along with excellent information to us out here in the hinterlands. may you have a very merry christmas holiday with your loved ones!

          i’m here in hawaii, loving the feel of our first family being here with us (though i won’t see them at all–i’m on an outer island). i know they’ll get a good big dose of aloha and relaxation, to see them through the next year.

          special lei of aloha (that’s a hug!) to chips!

        • December 23, 2011 at 11:38 pm

          left a comment. she’s an embarrassment to MN. well to everyone in Minnesota except for the misguided people who think she’s the neatest thing next to sliced bread.

    • December 23, 2011 at 4:28 pm

      I don’t know the specifics of the fees but its something like that. It is not coming from Social Security and its a lie that’s been pushed from the left and the right.

    • 178 FiredUpInCA
      December 23, 2011 at 4:54 pm

      “Does the recently extended payroll tax cut harm the solvency of the Social Security trust fund? Answer: no it doesn’t. The shortfall is made up with payments from the general fund, so the trust fund suffers no loss of income at all.”

      http://motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2011/12/does-cutting-payroll-tax-endanger-social-security

      I’m still studying this. My understanding is that the payroll tax funds Social Security, so it stands to reason that if you cut that tax, you cut the revenues to fund Social Security. But apparently, according the Mother Jones link above, the loss in revenue from the payroll tax cut can be made up by the general fund. So my next question is, do we have enough revenue sources going into the general fund?

    • December 23, 2011 at 6:12 pm

      When was the last time she was present and voted in the House? She needs to get a complete physical work-up.

      • 182 DreamChaser57
        December 23, 2011 at 8:38 pm

        I did not realize she was an active sitting member. She traversing the entire country spewing malicious drivel

  46. December 23, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    Cool Links from Obama Foodorama:

    Recipe Collectiom: White House Holiday Desserts

    http://obamafoodorama.blogspot.com/2011/12/white-house-holiday-dessert-recipe.html

    White House Holiday Tour Book http://www.whitehouse.gov/files/docs/Holidays-at-the-White-House-2011.pdf

    White House Holiday Photo of the Day 12/13

  47. December 23, 2011 at 4:27 pm

    Ny Times suit against the administration for the targeting of American citizens.

    Does the ny times feel it is alright if al Qaeda is an American born citizen?

    That is all!

    • December 23, 2011 at 4:29 pm

      I believe they just want a letter or memo.

    • December 23, 2011 at 4:31 pm

      “The New York Times filed a lawsuit Thursday asking the Justice Department to turn over a legal memo prepared by government lawyers that the paper believes outlines the circumstances under which it is lawful for the United States to kill an American citizen.”

      http://www.memeorandum.com/111223/p45#a111223p45

      • 188 Desraye
        December 23, 2011 at 5:21 pm

        They will probably accept the signing statement that will be attach to the military authorization bill.

      • 189 Jenny
        December 23, 2011 at 6:52 pm

        What a bunch of a-holes.

        The NYT never sued Bush. Not once. Which is astonishing considering all the shit he pulled.

        And when they discovered that Bush was illegally wiretapping Americans before the 2004 election, they buried it.

    • 190 DreamChaser57
      December 23, 2011 at 8:43 pm

      OMG……….unbelievable. The press cannot be impartial and sue the administration. I am appalled and disgusted. This is clearly politically motivated. I believe the president can cite “executive privilege.”

  48. 193 Pamela
    December 23, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    Yes yes yes yes yes! Aloha, Mr President, SIR!

  49. 194 donna dem 4 obama
    December 23, 2011 at 4:58 pm

    Aloha Mr President!

    May your trip be safe and swift and may you and your family have the wonderful joys of a restful and uneventful (nationally) holiday.

    • 195 jacquelineoboomer
      December 23, 2011 at 7:22 pm

      Donna – May I take a moment to wish you and yours a very happy holiday season! I’m sure you never expected such a unique experience (your little chat with PBO) to happen in 2011, but we’re all so thrilled for you that it did. Merry Christmas!

  50. 196 Dudette
    December 23, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    Slightly OT — very nice article on Melody Barnes, outgoing Director of the Domestic Policy Council (and fellow UNC Tarheel) on The Grio:

    http://www.thegrio.com/specials/life-and-style/melody-barnes-trades-white-house-for-family-life.php

    If you’re unfamiliar with her, these two comments say it all:

    “President Obama offered this comment about his faithful policy adviser and long-time friend: “I will always be grateful that a woman of Melody’s brilliance, creativity and heart led our domestic policy team during such a challenging time for our nation. Melody has left a lasting legacy, developing and implementing policies that have helped remake our education system, spurred innovation, and fostered opportunity and equality for millions of Americans.”

    Her colleague and friend, Valerie Jarrett had this to say: “Melody has been a central figure in the President’s efforts to build the foundation for a growth economy, and everywhere you look you can see signs of her effectiveness — in reforming education from pre-K through college, in pushing a record number of public-private partnerships in areas ranging from job training to innovation, and in her work on issues ranging from healthcare to childhood obesity. We’ve been fortunate to have her leadership and will miss her greatly.”

    ——————

    Among the achievements Barnes said she is proudest of:

    • Education reform, including $100 billion in American Recovery Act dollars; the Race to the Top Challenge which, for just 1 percent of our nation’s spending on education, inspired 40 states to reform their education laws to create rigorous college and career ready standards; and the Investing in Innovation fund and School Improvement Grants, designed to turn around the nation’s lowest-performing schools.

    • Efforts to reduce higher education costs by ending subsidies for private student lenders and giving $40 billion in savings back to students, raising the maximum Pell Grant award to $5,550, supporting the nation’s community colleges, and providing tax credits to help families pay for college.

    • Implementing the Affordable Care Act, which the administration says will provide health coverage to 34 million uninsured Americans, and make health care more affordable.

    • Advocating comprehensive immigration reform, and reforming enforcement procedures to focus on securing the nation’s borders; holding employers who knowingly hire undocumented workers accountable, and focusing enforcement resources on those illegal migrants who are a threat to public safety and national security.

    • Establishing the first White House Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation and establishing the Social Innovation Fund to strengthen the non-profit sector, promote public-private partnerships and engage more Americans in strengthening their communities.”

    —————

    Job well done, Ms. Barnes. Thank you for your service and all the best to you in the next phase of your personal and professional life!

  51. 198 FiredUpInCA
    December 23, 2011 at 5:04 pm

    Chipsticks,

    Thank you very much for this space you have created. It is one thing to create something, it is another thing to do what you’ve done: namely persevere and nurture a reliable resource and a refuge. You’ve attracted so many smart and soulful people that I consistently learn from and look forward to teaching me in 2012. Happy holidays to you and yours. I wish the best for the best.

    • 199 Betsy
      December 23, 2011 at 6:53 pm

      ITA with this. I think history will show all the information stored on this site and will be a wonderful tool hidden in the archives.

  52. 200 desertflower
    December 23, 2011 at 5:06 pm

    I tell you, if you just wait long enough, and pay attention…they all do it to themselves!

    http://www.politicususa.com/en/inquiry-governor-haley-misuse-fund

    enator Tom Harkin (D-IO) is calling for an investigation into whether Gov. Nikki Haley misused a federal health care reform grant by dictating the recommendations of an independent panel that used the funds to develop a report on how to keep South Carolina out of the exchange system. Lynn Bailey, an independent health economist in Columbia who participated in the committee discussions, referred to Haley’s research committee as kabuki theater.

  53. December 23, 2011 at 5:13 pm

    Cool WH video on the #40dollars just released with the folks who were behind him during his speech

    The difference: What 40 Dollars Means : http://youtu.be/Y_BfblBkdCY

    • 202 desertflower
      December 23, 2011 at 5:20 pm

      NZ…did you have an earthquake today?? I read somewhere that there was an earthquake in New Zealand. You guys ok??

      • December 23, 2011 at 5:47 pm

        Hi Desertflower… Yes we had an earthquake but it first started Friday afternoon (your Thursday). The city that was struck (Christchurch) is where I used to live, but since the big earthquake we had this year in February 2011 (a month before the Japan earthquake in March), I moved to another city just a couple of months ago.

        It was a very traumatizing experience and my son couldn’t handle the repeated aftershocks so we had to move, it was like everyday you were walking on jelly and at night it was like you were out at sea… the ground just shakes and sometimes pretty violently.

        If there’s one thing I am grateful for that has come out of this experience, is the immediate assistance given to us by President Obama and others (Japan, Australia and other NZ allies). PBO sent Military to help with search and rescue efforts immediately and was very clear that whatever it takes, he was there to help.

        NZ’ers are quite known to shake it off, get their hands dirty and move forward with rebuilding, that’s why I find it so difficult to understand the obstructionism coming from the GOP, especially at a time when people are suffering so much at this time/season.

        Anyway, my parents moved out of that city just a few weeks ago, so I am grateful they escaped another big earthquake. This time there has been no deaths, but only a few injuries. So I can say, we are ok here in New Zealand. For many of us, its a time to reflect and be thankful to wake up another day, not forgetting those who died in the February 22, 2011 earthquake.

        I appreciate you going out of your way to acknowledge whats happening in my country *hugs* You have a really good heart!

        • 204 desertflower
          December 23, 2011 at 5:57 pm

          Thank you,love! We live in a global community, and if I know that one of our TOD family is somewhere that something has happened, good or bad, I would surely ask :)
          So glad that you and your son are safe and sound…parents as well. Please stay safe…..hugs to you as well!

        • 205 Dudette
          December 23, 2011 at 7:30 pm

          Glad you and your family are safe, NZ. Send our love to your fellow countrymen dealing with this most recent quake and its aftermath.

          It’s also very heartening to hear firsthand that our President is providing the kind of assistance that should be provided to our neighbors around the world. Thanks for sharing your story. Merry Christmas!

          • December 24, 2011 at 12:11 am

            Thank You so much Dudette.. I appreciate the kind words!! POTUS is definitely a wonderful President. He is loved ‘down-under’ in the Pacific by many people in the Polynesian Islands, New Zealand and Australia :) If the world could vote in the 2012 Election, I can assure you, he would get the votes on this side of the Pacific Ocean… guaranteed!!! Have a wonderful Christmas weekend (in 6 more hours, NZ will be one of the first countries to see the Christmas Day begin hehehe)

        • 207 Betsy
          December 23, 2011 at 7:30 pm

          So glad you are ok. My nephew left Christchurch the day before the earthquake hit last February, but lost a good friend that day, and another friend lost her leg. It was very hard on him. I am so sorry you had to go through that again.

          • December 24, 2011 at 12:44 am

            Betsy, my condolences for your nephews loss. My mother lost a friend in that same earthquake. Although we were mourning for a life that had been lost, at the same time we were celebrating new life (my brother and his partner had their first child, a boy, the following day after the earthquake). I hope the events that are happening here, doesn’t deter your nephew from visiting here again in future with other NZ cities not affected by the quake :) like the ‘Middle Earth’ hehehe

            When my family/friends who were with me during the quake gather together tonight before midnight (it will be Christmas for us in a few hours), we will have him and his friends in our thoughts and prayers as we reflect on 2011. Merry Christmas Betsy, you’ve made my Christmas Eve evening more special. Thank you! *hugs*

            • 209 Betsy
              December 24, 2011 at 2:44 am

              Thank you NZ4Obama, his name is Thomas. Congratulations on your new nephew’s birth despite a trying time. I am positive that Thomas will be back in NZ one day. He loved it there and hated to leave. Merry Christmas to you and your family as well.

      • December 23, 2011 at 5:50 pm

        hehehe.. Yes, NZ tries to make sure all its native animals remain a big part of our History/Culture. So, we try to make sure things like this continue… especially a rarity like this! White Kiwi’s are very uncommon :-) The only country in the world to have these flightless birds needs to remain alive.

    • 213 DreamChaser57
      December 23, 2011 at 9:02 pm

      Beautiful. Time and energy will not permit me to list everything I love about this esteemed administration but I must say one of the most endearing things about the WH and the PBO is how they readily embrace everyday people, their problems, hopes, and dreams. Everyday citizens have been the focus from day one. The voice of everyday people was ignored in the previous administration.

  54. 214 desertflower
    December 23, 2011 at 5:25 pm

    I did find this from WH.gov and the AJA…

    Cutting payroll taxes in half for 160 million workers next year: The President’s plan will expand the payroll tax cut passed last year to cut workers payroll taxes in half in 2012 – providing a $1,500 tax cut to the typical American family, without negatively impacting the Social Security Trust Fund.

  55. 215 Liberal Librarian
    December 23, 2011 at 5:26 pm

    Wow, just wow. The top 10 hits from Ron Paul’s writings, per TPM: 10 Shocking Quotes From Ron Paul’s Newsletters.

  56. December 23, 2011 at 5:26 pm

    Oops, forgot to log in. Break me out of jail?

  57. 217 desertflower
    December 23, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    The impasse largely concerned how to pay for extending the tax cut for a full year. The House had rejected the Democrats’ idea to increase the income tax on millionaires, instead passing a one-year extension that covered the cost by spending cuts and new revenue. The Senate’s stopgap measure would raise fees on federally backed mortgages.

    And this from Republicans:

    Conservatives disliked the payroll tax proposal for several reasons. It would increase the deficit and do little to help the economy, they said. And they raised concerns that because payroll taxes fund Social Security, any reduction would hurt that program’s long-term stability, even though the deal calls for the fund to be replenished. Many argued that their constituents would regard the tax increase as acceptable and would rather see taxes go up than give in to one of Obama’s legislative priorities.

    Funny how those Bush tax cuts didn’t have to be paid for, but tax cuts for the middle class, do.

    • 218 ML
      December 23, 2011 at 7:01 pm

      Also apparently their constituents weren’t so thrilled about the tax increase. I understand they were being hammered in their home districts.

  58. December 23, 2011 at 5:51 pm

    WHOA, check out this map of the distribution of mercury pollution:

    http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2010/03/17/90576/report-mercury-pollution-from.html

    A picture is worth a thousand words.

  59. 224 utaustinliberal
    December 23, 2011 at 5:51 pm

    Heads Up TOD: Rev Al on Politics Nation will have his first Revvie Awards where he talks about the political stories of the year and the losers and winners. It promises to be fun and entertaining!

    Also don’t forget that tonight on ABC 10PM ET/9PM CT The Obamas sit down with Barbara Walters. :D

    • 225 anniebella
      December 23, 2011 at 6:09 pm

      What time will POTUS arrive in Hawaii?

      • 226 Proud Former White House Intern
        December 23, 2011 at 6:51 pm

        I think he will arrive around 6:20pm local time. Hawaii is five or six hours behind the East coast.

    • 227 dotster3
      December 23, 2011 at 6:43 pm

      Entertaining—-the Revvies. Noticed Alex Wagner never mentions President Obama or chooses him for any outstanding effort this year. I had to look up Maria Theresa Kumar, the gal in the leopard print dress. She founded Voto Latino, a non-profit registering and encouraging political engagement in the Latino community.

      • 228 dotster3
        December 23, 2011 at 6:55 pm

        Of course, right after I slam A.W., she chooses PBO for Best Political Performance of 2011, as did Richard Wolfe, saying any Repub who thinks that Obama will be easy to defeat is in for a big surprise.

        • 229 jacquelineoboomer
          December 23, 2011 at 7:13 pm

          It’s okay; when AW picked Hillary Clinton for working hard on the world stage – not that she didn’t; I applaud Hillary – but then failed to mention she works for the Obama administration, I tuned AW out. Haven’t watched the remainder of my recording of Rev. Al’s show, but maybe I will now, if they went on to give credit where credit is due.

  60. December 23, 2011 at 6:10 pm

    Story from an OFA volunteer about HCR and how it helped her daughter who is now back on her mother’s plan.

    It Gives Me Peace of Mind

    http://www.whatisworking.com/2011/12/it-gives-me-peace-of-mind.html

  61. 235 Linda
    December 23, 2011 at 6:17 pm

    Bob Vander Plaats’ Pay-For-Play Scandal: Charged A Million Bucks For Endorsement, Asked Candidates To Drop Out

    Earlier this week, Santorum admitted that Vander Plaats approached the campaign with an indirect solicitation of money to help promote his support, but now other sources familiar with the talks between Vander Plaats and GOP candidates are characterizing the tactics as “corrupt.”

    “Clearly the endorsement was for sale — without a doubt,” one source told ABC News’ Shushannah Walshe and Michael Falcone, stressing that Vander Plaats had tried to receive money for his support in past election cycles:

    Though Santorum did not specify the dollar amount he and Vander Plaats discussed, multiple sources said he was soliciting as much as $1 million from Santorum and other candidate

    ABC News has learned that Vander Plaats tried to solicit money for his endorsement during the last presidential cycle too. A former staffer for Mitt Romney’s 2008 presidential bid who is currently unaffiliated with a campaign said Vander Plaats came to them seeking money for his backing if he supported the former Massachusetts governor.

    http://thinkprogress.org/

  62. 236 Bobfr (aka Our4thEstate)
    December 23, 2011 at 6:34 pm

    Another great essay by Deaniac – http://www.thepeoplesview.net/2011/12/how-president-obama-orchestrated-john.html

    My comment:

    Always a great read, Deaniac. Thank you!

    What has amazed me most about McConnell, Boehner & Cantor is the expanse of their delusion.

    They knew President Obama already had Bush’s rich people tax break on autopilot to end Jan 2013.

    They allowed him to then maneuver them into the surely to fail ‘Super Committee’ thereby placing major DoD cuts on autopilot to begin in Jan 2013 while Medicare/Medicaid & Social Security are unscathed.

    And, then, pow, wam, bam – President Obama is all over the Nation with the AJA and anyone not suffering from massive delusion would have realized that the last thing they would want to be doing is campaigning from a position of blatantly supporting only the rich and corporations while denying sustenance to the middle class (shrinking every day), the unemployed and 50 % of the electorate residing at or below the poverty line.

    But, they did it. By Nov, Boehner and McConnell should have done three things – support payroll tax cut, unemployment insurance extension and a tiny surcharge on the truly wealthy for 1 year. They would have had a bit of disturbance among their fanatics but they would have denied the President and Democrats much of the oxygen in the 2012 campaign.

    Instead, they handed the President & Democrats a decades worth of free oxygen tanks and placed themselves in an exceptionally small corner in a very small room packed with a few super rich wimps & a bunch of raving lunatic supporters.

    A word to the delusional – it’s a fatal disease.

    #YesWeCanDOMoreTogether – We Must! #OutPerform1936

    • December 23, 2011 at 6:53 pm

      This from the post:

      Having accomplished the biggest reforms in the first two years with a Democratic majority though, the President, once the backlash came, turned to exposing the political Right for what it is – an arm of the multinational corporations invading American government.

      It’s just so freaking obvious that PBO has a long-range vision, and that vision is to neuter the GOP as a viable force, and the Teafascists are there helping him do just that.

      • 238 Bobfr (aka Our4thEstate)
        December 23, 2011 at 6:57 pm

        Yep!

        Happy holidays LL!

        #PRESSON

      • 239 desertflower
        December 23, 2011 at 8:20 pm

        So many great comments, and as usual, a terrific, insightful piece by Deaniac.. A must read for everyone that wants to understand the President’s long game vision. They underestimate this man at their peril.

        • 240 Bobfr (aka Our4thEstate)
          December 23, 2011 at 10:07 pm

          So true, df. And the quality of the comments from LL, CaliCat, CFWard57 & zizi2 illuminate Deaniac’s excellent analysis.

          Happy holidays to you!

          #PRESSON

          • 241 desertflower
            December 23, 2011 at 11:10 pm

            You need to be included in that list :) Such important, insightful analysis…sometimes “heady” stuff…but always so well written and thought out. Love TPV! Happy Holidays to you as well, Bobfr….thank you:)

  63. December 23, 2011 at 6:45 pm

    Hah!

    10 Words We Learned in 2011.

    “Oops.” (interjection)
    First known usage: 1933; recent notable usage: Rick Perry
    1. Expression typically expressing dismay or an apology, often at a mistake. 2. The sound of one of the biggest presidential debate gaffes ever.

    Ubeki-beki-beki-stan-stan (noun)
    Origin: Herman Cain
    1. A mangled but intentional mispronunciation of one of central Asia’s “-stan” countries, presumably Uzbekistan. 2. A way of illustrating to one’s voting base that one’s lack of depth on foreign affairs may indeed be a selling point.

  64. 244 Linda
    December 23, 2011 at 7:00 pm

    Did anyone watch The Revvies ?

    Alex Wagner is disgusting.

    Michael Steele is delusional

    • 245 jacquelineoboomer
      December 23, 2011 at 7:09 pm

      She was awful. I watch Rev. Al every day (he and Martin Bashir), but I think I’m going to have to re-think that, if he keeps having her on – can’t stand her kind of sneakiness.

      • 246 Linda
        December 23, 2011 at 7:25 pm

        She called PBO weak again….Yuk

        • 247 EDP4BHO
          December 23, 2011 at 7:31 pm

          I don’t watch him, but listen to him every day on radio. Not home in time to catch him, but I think he needs a few tweets, which he will read at times on his radio show. I am not liking his choice of regular guests, though I know he likes challenges. But having people on who continue to berate the person he strongly supports, they without real intelligent arguments, does a disservice of to his show of support, IMO. I also don’t like some of his radio guests…..I think he can do better.

          • 248 L3
            December 23, 2011 at 7:56 pm

            I’m guessing he does not have complete control over who appears on his show. It’s MSNBC/the producers choice. Think about it, all of those folks are paid analysts/hosts. If they are being paid, they’ve got to work. I bet if Al had more control he would not be bothered with most of those folks.

            • 249 jacquelineoboomer
              December 23, 2011 at 8:08 pm

              Agree, but I have tweeted him numerous times – and Martin – to ask that they not put AW on their shows. I figure it can’t hurt.

              • 250 L3
                December 23, 2011 at 8:27 pm

                They are probably trying to promote her to get more people to watch her horrible show. I don’t like her either. She seems very immature and unserious. They all treat politics like it’s a game and seem to care less how these games impact real people’s lives.

    • 252 Dudette
      December 23, 2011 at 7:10 pm

      x2

      Love the Rev Al’s humor though.

      • 253 jacquelineoboomer
        December 23, 2011 at 8:10 pm

        Me, too – and I love Martin Bashir’s humor, as well.

        The Rev. Al’s show is full of enjoyable moments – I’m just so glad he’s on, so I can continue to watch at least a little bit of MSNBC these days. Al’s show is insightful, humorous, filled with rapier wit … just love it!

  65. 254 Linda
    December 23, 2011 at 7:28 pm

    Here is the signing Statement that PBO attached to the HR2205 today.

    http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/12/23/statement-president-hr-2055

    • 255 jacquelineoboomer
      December 23, 2011 at 8:17 pm

      Very strongly worded, and necessary – from my POV.

      I don’t believe PBO has attached many of these signing statements … but I think I recall GWB did that all the time (probably at the direction of puppeteer Cheney).

  66. 260 Dudette
    December 23, 2011 at 7:42 pm

    Cenk Uygar is a total a**wipe. Sorry, I just happened to channel surf and stopped on his show on Current TV.
    What a total waste of air this guy is. I dunno what Al Gore was thinking when he hired this creep.

  67. December 23, 2011 at 7:50 pm

    President Barack Obama and the DNC plan to return $71,600 donated by disgraced former MF Global head Jon Corzine and his wife, a source confirmed to POLITICO.
    The money was split between the DNC Victory Fund and the reelection effort.

    But Corzine was not just a donor, but also a bundler, including from other MF Global employees.

    The source said the other donations from employees will be looked at case by case and, if the facts warrant it, returned.

    The news came late on the Friday before Christmas, generally a blackout in terms of headlines, and in this case at the tail end of a strong day for President Obama thanks to the payroll tax holiday extension deal.

    Pool-

  68. 273 halo
    December 23, 2011 at 7:57 pm

    Is he there yet?

  69. 274 dotster3
    December 23, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    Embarrassing display of misplaced values—–the stampedes, tramplings, arrests to get to the new Air Jordans. For shoes?

  70. 276 Linda
    December 23, 2011 at 8:07 pm

    Meltdown on HP over the Signing Statement. It is hysterical.

  71. 279 dotster3
    December 23, 2011 at 8:25 pm

    Huge corporations want a tax break too! Enough of this talk about the middle class. Corporations are the ones who are really suffering. It’s so sad, this poor trampled on and disadvantaged segment of our society. They only have multiple billions, not enough to satisfy their greed, don’t you see? Real tears are rolling down my face about their awful predicament. But—-there’s hope! They are gearing up, forming heavy hitting lobbying groups to wage a big tax fight next year, to finally get their “fair share”.

    http://discussions.chicagotribune.com/20/chinews/chi-corporations-gear-up-for-major-us-tax-battle-20111223/10

  72. 280 dotster3
    December 23, 2011 at 8:39 pm

    Some people are so desperate. Like those in the blogosphere who were all in a dither and aflutter with the false rumor that Bo was flown back from Hawaii so President Obama could have a shopping photo op with him, at great cost to the taxpayers of course. OMG. Too many dummies in this country who are so hateful that they’ll believe almost anything.

    http://www.staradvertiser.com/news/breaking/136107053.html?id=136107053

  73. 281 hopefruit2
    December 23, 2011 at 8:41 pm

    Don’t forget to watch Barbara Waters’ interview with our President and First Lady tonight at 10PM ET (or tape it if you can)!

    To my TOD family and our President: Merry Christmas – Happy Holidays – Feliz Navidad!

    • 282 DreamChaser57
      December 24, 2011 at 1:37 am

      I cannot stomach Barbara Walters. It boggles the mind that she can have PBO in her presence, someone with keen wit, an astute mastery over complex policy issues and she asks him insufferable inane questions like “Why do people hate you” – I just can’t.

  74. 283 Janelle
    December 23, 2011 at 8:48 pm

    I just saw that http://www.khon2.com said it will livestream PBO’s arrival. I can’t remember but I thought someone said he’s due to arrive about 6:00 pm Hawaii time. So 11:00 pm EST? Someone correct me if I’m wrong.

  75. 285 halo
    December 23, 2011 at 8:53 pm

    Any word on PBO and recess appointments?

  76. December 23, 2011 at 8:56 pm

    Can you break it down what the signing statement means?

    Lawyer-ese is nit my string suit.

    • 287 maritza
      December 23, 2011 at 9:33 pm

      Jovi, I hope this helps: http://www.politicususa.com/en/obama-ndaa-signing-statement

      …In his signing statement, Obama noted, “I have previously announced that it is the policy of my Administration, and in the interests of promoting transparency in Government, to indicate when a bill presented for Presidential signature includes provisions that are subject to well-founded constitutional objections. The Department of Justice has advised that a small number of provisions of H.R. 2055 raise constitutional concerns.”

      A signing statement is something of a public pronouncement a president might make about a bill they are signing into law. They have been used to clarify their positions or elaborate dissent. In this case, Obama is once again noting that he will seek the repeal of measures in the act that prohibit transfers of Guantanamo Bay detainees.
      The President’s objections are in part:
      In this bill, the Congress has once again included provisions that would bar the use of appropriated funds for transfers of Guantanamo detainees into the United States (section 8119 of Division A), as well as transfers to the custody or effective control of foreign countries unless specified conditions are met (section 8120 of Division A). These provisions are similar to others found in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012. My Administration has repeatedly communicated my objections to these provisions, including my view that they could, under certain circumstances, violate constitutional separation of powers principles. In approving this bill, I reiterate the objections my Administration has raised regarding these provisions, my intent to interpret and apply them in a manner that avoids constitutional conflicts, and the promise that my Administration will continue to work towards their repeal.

  77. 289 Dakota
    December 23, 2011 at 9:08 pm

    I just finished making my gumbo and will be watching tonight…even though I would rather not have to listen to that awful Baba Wawa. I just can’t resist seeing my favorite couple together!

    • 290 JoJothecat
      December 23, 2011 at 9:27 pm

      Yum gumbo, I wish I’d thought of that for Xmas dinner.

      • 291 Dakota
        December 23, 2011 at 9:36 pm

        Hi JoJo,

        Gumbo at Xmas is a family tradition. What are you whipping up for Xmas dinner? I’m always curious about what people are having.

        • 292 JoJothecat
          December 23, 2011 at 10:20 pm

          Hi Dakota,

          My grandparents on both sides of the family were from New Orleans and my grandmother would make dressing with orsters. Its just me and my mom so she is cooking greens and we’re having cornish hens, a beet salad and sweet potatoes.

  78. December 23, 2011 at 9:09 pm

    Peeps, please let us West Coasters know at what point in the Barbara Walters show POTUS and FLOTUS appear so we don’t have to suffer through the rest of the program. TIA.

  79. 301 desertflower
    December 23, 2011 at 9:18 pm

    for those of you trying to keep up with the evil goings on of Sheriff Arpiao, a judge has ruled that any Latinos that have been pulled over or detained by MCSO can join in a class action lawsuit

    http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2011/12/23/20111223arpaio-case-judge-rules-destroyed-documents.html

    And the video was released of the death of the Army vet that died in MCSO custody….I haven’t seen it, but to read the description is gruesome enough for me.

    • December 23, 2011 at 9:26 pm

      df, I was just reading up on that. Major breakthrough. I think you guys are going to see some major shifts.

      Don’t anybody tell me that PBO hasn’t brought change to this country. INDISPUTABLE.

      • 303 desertflower
        December 23, 2011 at 9:38 pm

        I think the ground finally feels like it’s moving under my feet…in a good way! SO many things happening, in rapid succession….voting rights challenged,DOJ coming down hard on Arpiao, judges ruling fairly, redistricting maps more evenly apportioned.My mind reels…..people are beginning to finally wake from their fog and are paying attention again. I feel something big in my bones….in a good way! I hope I’m right :) Change is coming to America!!

        • December 23, 2011 at 9:44 pm

          df, I think PBO pushes people’s buttons big time and they are driven to insane idiocy. Those who have any sense of history and decency are standing up for our principles. So I have faith that even though we see so much derision and disrespect for our POTUS, make no mistake – the tides of change have come. They are lapping up on our shores and lighting up all those people who are unconscious and who spew horrific values. They are being challenged like never before. {{{{PROUD}}}}

    • December 23, 2011 at 9:46 pm

      That’s an excellent news df. I look forward to the day this racist punk is frog-marched to his own concentration camp.

  80. 309 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    December 23, 2011 at 9:23 pm

    Thus far, looks like only Mitt & Ron Paul have been certified for the VA primary. Gingrich’s petitions have yet to be examined. Perry’s were examined and found to lack sufficient qualifying sigs. Bachmann, Huntsman & Santorum didn’t even bother to submit petitions — yet they want to “lead.” Please…

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/virginia-politics/post/perry-disqualified-from-va-primary-ballot/2011/12/23/gIQA3BZNEP_blog.html?hpid=z2

    • December 23, 2011 at 9:52 pm

      Typical rethug incompetence.

    • 311 DreamChaser57
      December 24, 2011 at 1:50 am

      Thanks for posting this. I was astounded when I saw this in a CNN News Alert; it speaks to the ineptitude and indolence of the Republican field. These people are traversing the country garnering national exposure spewing malicious and divisive rhetoric in debates. The significant majority of them are attempting to bolster their personal brands, or get a book deal, it’s appalling and infuriating. Cain opted to “suspend” his campaign enabling him to continue to have access to his campaign’s treasury. Bachmann has been completely negligent in her role as a Minnesota representative yet wants us to really believe that she is deserving of being the president. This is insane, completely and totally. There are no words………………………

  81. December 23, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    Department of Education Awards $200 Million to Seven States to Advance K-12 Reform
    The U.S. Department of Education announced today that seven states -Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania- will each receive a share of the $200 million in Race to the Top Round 3 (RTT3) fund to advance targeted K-12 reforms aimed at improving student achievement.
    “These seven states are now among 22 Race to the Top winners spread out across the country that are investing in key education reforms to prepare more students for college and careers,” U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said. “Race to the Top has been a pivotal program that has generated more progress in improving our nation’s education system over the last three years than we’ve seen over the last decade. We look forward to partnering with these states to continue this important work.”

    http://blogs.suntimes.com/sweet/2011/12/illinois_finally_wins_race_to_.html

  82. December 23, 2011 at 9:35 pm

    6:25PM local time
    PBO arrives at Hawaii, Hickam Air Force Base, Honolulu

    That is 8:25AM Pacific time and 11:25 Eastern time.

    So PBO’s got a couple more hours in flight.

  83. 316 FTL
    December 23, 2011 at 9:42 pm

    Good evening TODville!! When I was looking at the pics of PBO signing the tax ext. It looks as if he is thinking about the repugs, laughing to himself and thinking ha ha ha BITCHES!!!!!!(in a condecending voice).

    • December 24, 2011 at 12:33 am

      I thought the same thing – in both the pic in the Oval Office and when he’s walking to AF1, he looks like he’s chuckling to himself about how he defeated the GOP so blatantly, instead of in an non-obvious way, like usual.

    • December 23, 2011 at 10:06 pm

      huckmuck doesn’t need any reason to go apeshit crazy. Forget it jovie. No one will remember their hussy-fit next week.

    • 320 Bobfr (aka Our4thEstate)
      December 23, 2011 at 10:14 pm

      Our4thEstate Bobfr
      And, furthermore, House & Senate #KochServants, #PresObama just told you to stuff it on Gitmo & other Omnibus garbage – http://t.co/zmxXfO2I

      For the next 11 months, the only question for the GOP is just how much more of a record do they want President Obama and the Democrats to set in 2012 than the one FDR led in 1936.

      #OutPerform1936

  84. December 23, 2011 at 9:47 pm

    AWESOME tweet:

    @7im
    If you take Ron Paul at his word that he’s not a racist, then ask yourself what kind of man profits from peddling racism to others?

  85. December 23, 2011 at 9:59 pm

    Aloha Mr. President.

    Merry Christmas Chips and TODers, I wish nothing but the best for all and their loved-ones this holiday season.

    Thanks to everyone for making this site my refuge, and because of this site I overcame my fear and joined the Twitter universe.

    Chips, you’ve been our gift all year long, thank you dear friend!

  86. 326 symmetry11
    December 23, 2011 at 10:03 pm

    Does anyone have a live stream?

  87. December 23, 2011 at 10:03 pm

    Nice intro by Bawa. She’s hoping this interview with the Obamas becomes a holiday tradition. Never seen the White House looking more beautiful… Sweet. Michelle looks lovely in that dress :-) .

  88. 330 itgurl_29
    December 23, 2011 at 10:13 pm

    FLOTUS looks amazing! BW is actually being more respectful than I thought she would. I guess at 82 she realizes it’s better to go out on a good note than a hateful one. But she’s still got 45 more minutes to go, so this could change.

    Aww, I think they just implied that Sasha no longer believes in Santa!! LOL, they grow up so fast!

    • 331 collegekay
      December 23, 2011 at 10:29 pm

      BW was more tolerable than last year. I remember she asked PBO if he cursed and when was the last time he cursed. Like wtf? LOL.

  89. 332 carolyn
    December 23, 2011 at 10:16 pm

    Yes, I too feel the ground shifting…..the far right is fighting it, but it is happening. I always think of what MLK said, and I thought about it and wrote it about on election day, Nov. 2008. “The arc of history bends long, but it bends toward justice.” We are seeing it happen, in spite of temper tantrums and breath holding. It takes work, but we are seeing that President Obama has not been fighting this battle alone.

  90. December 23, 2011 at 10:23 pm

    What happened to the part in Barbara Walters interview where she asked PBO if he was a “mediocre President”? Ha! events overtook them? The edited that part out? Dumbasses.

  91. December 23, 2011 at 10:24 pm

    Actually, I really liked that interview and seeing inside the WH!

    • 335 itgurl_29
      December 23, 2011 at 10:27 pm

      Me too. Surprised at how decent BW behaved. POTUS and FLOTUS were fabulous, as usual. Witty, charming, and beautiful. Those are the three words I’d use to describe the First Couple.

      • December 23, 2011 at 10:32 pm

        No she heavily edited the original interview to produce the syrupy pap. Last week she was promoting clips where she asked Pres. Obama all manner of GOP talking point nonsense, including “Are you a Mediocre President?” Today none of that is in sight. I guess they realize the way the political winds are blowing and she wants to maintain access well into the next FIVE years. She’s no fool

        • 337 itgurl_29
          December 23, 2011 at 10:36 pm

          Wow, I didn’t know that. Well, PBO wins again, LOL.

        • 338 Janelle
          December 23, 2011 at 10:43 pm

          Yes, she chopped it down for sure and repeated her GOP points all over the place before today. I always like to see them together though but I couldn’t take looking at BW for long, whew she’s had some work done. In the past, she would show her interview with him alone first and then both of them together. I wish she had aired his portion because he called out the Repugs very well despite her questioning and after today’s events, it actually would make the GOP look worse. I think BW cut it down intentionally because it would make PBO look vindicated. Instead she just says that his polls go up and down. I’m actually upset that she edited it like that…..anything not to let the GOP look bad. If the tables were turned, she would rubbing it in the President’s face.

          • December 23, 2011 at 11:16 pm

            Thank you. Glad I wasn’t the only who noticed the drastic change in tone from the clips she showed before. PBO will also lay the corporate media to waste before he finishes up hi two terms. The won’t know what hit them. Dumbasses

    • 340 hopefruit2
      December 23, 2011 at 10:32 pm

      Agreed!

    • 341 anniebella
      December 23, 2011 at 11:34 pm

      I agree with you Jovie. The White House was just beautiful. And the love and respect between POTUS and FLOTUS were just wonderful. They held hands the whole interview, didn’t they? I didn’t focus on Barbara Walters, I focus of the First Couple.

  92. 342 hopefruit2
    December 23, 2011 at 10:31 pm

    I actually enjoyed the interview – loved seeing and hearing our POTUS and FLOTUS!

    • 343 anniebella
      December 23, 2011 at 11:22 pm

      I enjoyed the interview, I don’t think it lasted long enough. I can sit and watch POTUS and FLOTUS for hours. How about the next five years they get Oprah to do the Christmas interview.

  93. 345 JoJothecat
    December 23, 2011 at 10:32 pm

    I agree folks, the ground is shifting in the direction towards justice and fairness to those that have been playing by the rules while the very rich have been cheating and are given all the breaks. People are waking up to what is truly important.. a government that works, is for the people, and fair wages.

  94. 346 EDP4BHO
    December 23, 2011 at 10:38 pm

    I was watching YouTube, enjoying the Four Tops, and saw this comment, to the song “Something About You”:

    “SOMETHING about this SONG. as MOTOWN is….unexplainable…other than GOD to be the GLORY in JESUS name. but the ENERGY of this MUSIC is as satisfying TODAY as it was THEN. something about OBAMA…love him. Something about MOTOWN…LOVE IT. ALLLLLLLLL ABOUT GOD ALMIGHTYYYYYYYYY.”

    Haha, I love that she put “something about OBAMA…..love him”. Towards the end of the song the Tops sing, …..something about you, shakes me all up inside, you’re a real heartbraker,…………… you’re a smooth operator, and it thrills me to call your name.

    I feel safe in saying a lot of you “naughty mat” ladies will concur :-D Have a good night all ! Going for one more glance at my “smooth operator, heartbraker” Presidente :-D

  95. 347 FiredUpInCA
    December 23, 2011 at 11:01 pm

    Now Newt’s asking about Ron Paul:

    “I think that Congressman Paul has to explain his own situation and how he could have had a decade of newsletters that had his name on it that he apparently wasn’t aware of,” Gingrich said.

    “I think that somebody should say to him ‘OK, how much money did you make from the newsletters?’ These things are really nasty, and he didn’t know about it? Wasn’t aware of it? But he’s sufficiently ready to be president? It strikes me it raises some fundamental questions about him.”

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/12/23/us-usa-campaign-gingrich-idUSTRE7BJ29720111223

    • 348 desertflower
      December 23, 2011 at 11:06 pm

      I gotta say, I can’t argue with Leroy on that!

    • December 23, 2011 at 11:11 pm

      Is he ever capable of making a statement without using the term, “fundamental”??

      • 350 africa
        December 23, 2011 at 11:15 pm

        Or radical when talking abt PBO.

      • December 23, 2011 at 11:20 pm

        Just like VP Biden has “literally”…

      • 352 desertflower
        December 23, 2011 at 11:38 pm

        No. It fools the “not so smart ones” into thinking he’s highly intellectual…and all Historian like :)

      • 353 Dudette
        December 24, 2011 at 12:08 am

        Ha! Meta, I think you’ve hit on the basis for a new drinking game! Glub, glub, glub! :-)

      • 354 Ladyhawke
        December 24, 2011 at 5:39 am

        Fundamentally: Newt Gingrich’s Favorite Word

        ====================================

        By now, we’ve all become familiar with Newt Gingrich’s habit of using a few choice adverbs to make the things he says sound just a bit more intelligent to his listeners. Profoundly. Deeply. Frankly. But none of them are as vital to the Gingrich lexicon as fundamentally (along with its cousin, the adjective fundamental). While this appears to be Gingrich’s favorite word in the English language, you could also argue that he uses the word so often, and so reflexively, that it’s become virtually meaningless to him. In a single 2008 address to the American Enterprise Institute, he used the words fundamentally or fundamental a total of eighteen times.

        Newt Gingrich, you might say, is the world’s most hard-core fundamentalist.

        http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2011/11/fundamentally-newt-gingrichs-favorite-word.html

  96. 355 africa
    December 23, 2011 at 11:14 pm

    Ed Henry is tweeting that PBO has landed.

    • 356 anniebella
      December 24, 2011 at 3:20 am

      Ed Henry went to hawaii? YUKE! YUKE! All I need to hear now is Todd and Tapper or that O’Donnell woman went. YUKE!!!!!!!!!!!!

  97. December 23, 2011 at 11:14 pm

    @petermaercbs PETER MAER
    Aloha. Pres Obama arrives Hawaii. Just under 9 hr AF 1 Flight.

  98. 358 halo
    December 23, 2011 at 11:20 pm

    Ok the interview was a good one, but PBO really needs to stop using the word “lazy!” It just does not have any good connotations. It’s like “bitter.” It doesn’t matter how you say it or what context you say it in, it just only invites needless criticism.

  99. 359 isonprize
    December 23, 2011 at 11:23 pm

    Can anyone answer the big question? Is BO with PBO in Hawaii? :lol: :lol:

  100. December 23, 2011 at 11:32 pm

    Bo the First dog went to Hawaii too this time. Here’s a press tweet.

  101. December 23, 2011 at 11:38 pm

    He’s arrived! Khakis and button down shirt in full effect. Don’t see Bo yet….

  102. 375 taiping1
    December 23, 2011 at 11:39 pm

    http://yfrog.com/kka83pcj picture of Bo on AF1! He gets to play in surf too!

    • 378 Betsy
      December 24, 2011 at 12:48 am

      Don’t read the comments. They are full of criticism of him spending too much money getting to Hawaii, calling him “The King Obama” or the “Emperor..” It’s horrible. I feel so sad that the ordinary people don’t really bother to get the facts :(

      • 379 anniebella
        December 24, 2011 at 3:34 am

        Betsy, the only thing I would ask these people who are making all this critcism about too much money being spent by King Obama getting to Hawaii, did you complain when King G.W. Bush, or Emperor G.W. were spending money gong on “all” his vacations? We know these are not ordinary people,these are idiots who dislike this President and they would complain if the President and his family just went around the corner for a vacation. Look at how they wanted to make a big deal out of Bo being on the Christmas card, or POTUS taking Bo shopping.

      • December 24, 2011 at 3:44 am

        Only a few haters in the comments. Most were thrilled and happy.

  103. December 24, 2011 at 12:01 am

    Here’s the video of the White House #40dollars campaign

    • 385 anniebella
      December 24, 2011 at 3:58 am

      I don’t know how came up with this $40 dollars idea but it was a great idea. Some people will say what is $40 dollars? Only those who have never been down to there last dime, and have to wait till they get paid again will say something like that. Forty dollars can put gas in your car, it can get a family some grocery, it can help pay a bill, etc., etc. Of course forty dollars wouldn’t mean very much to Romney and his friends, heck Romney makes ten thousand bets. But to the real people forty dollars a week does matter.

  104. 391 fanoTOD
    December 24, 2011 at 2:09 am

    if not for reading here, i wouldn’t know any of this – well, maybe a distorted, limited version. TOD is the best news and information source there is! thank you, all, for all the links and pics and news … and comments, of course!! precious and beautiful!!!

    Thank You for keeping this treasure going through the holidays, too, Chipsticks!! amazing ….

  105. 392 Bobfr (aka Our4thEstate)
    December 24, 2011 at 2:47 am

    Our4thEstate Bobfr
    America – #PeddlersOfFear -corporate, religious or political – have 1 goal – your giving them your $. #beingpoor is the result. #RejectFear

    You will see many #PeddlersOfFear posts in the days/weeks to come. Please feel free, as always, to not merely re-tweet but build your own messages about the greatest scam, for not just centuries, but throughout all human history, of the skill of a few to make $$$, kill countless others, and be the scourge of our species because they practice the art of #PeddlersOfFear.

    #YesWeCanDOMoreTogether – We Must!

  106. December 24, 2011 at 3:55 am

    For the first time in 42 years, Libya is set to celebrate the anniversary of its independence.

    The united Libyan Kingdom was formed on 24 December 1951 under King Idris.

    However, after Col Muammar Gaddafi seized power in 1969, only the date of his coup was allowed to be marked.

    Celebrations are planned in Tripoli, including lunch for several thousand, spread on what organisers say could stretch to 2km (1.6 miles) of tables along Tripoli’s seafront.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/mobile/world-middle-east-16325383

  107. 395 Pragmatic adult
    December 24, 2011 at 4:58 am

    Just heard the Newt did not have enough signatures to be in VA ballot. These people are a JOKE!!

    • 396 halo
      December 24, 2011 at 7:10 am

      Looks like we’ll be facing Romney and Christie.

    • 397 FiredUpInCA
      December 24, 2011 at 7:38 am

      “These people are a JOKE!!”

      You are right on the mark. I am convinced that Perry and Gingrich are running for Comedian-in-Chief. Perry can be excused because numerically-challenged.

      “Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich failed to collect enough signatures to appear on the Virginia primary ballot, the Republican Party of Virginia announced Saturday morning, leaving the longtime Virginia resident without a place on the state’s ballot and raising questions about his campaign’s organization.”

      Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. *Wipes tears*

      Wait, what? He lives in Virginia and he couldn’t get enough signatures?

      “Gingrich and his wife Callista have resided in McLean, Virginia, a wealthy suburb of Washington, for several years. Callista is active in Northern Virginia organizations, including playing the French horn in a Fairfax, Virginia band.”

      But I could have sworn I heard it reported that this was a done deal?

      “On Wednesday, Gingrich ensured a crowd of supporters he had met the threshold for appearing on the ballot, saying he had gathered anywhere from 12,000-14,000 signatures.”

      Newt you slay me! Baghdad Bob has got nothing on you.

      “Gingrich’s spokesman said Wednesday the effort to secure a spot on the Virginia ballot was meant to showcase the campaign’s ground game.”

      LOL! Cough, choke, gasp, snort.

      http://www.cnn.com/2011/12/24/politics/gop-virginia-primary/index.html

  108. December 24, 2011 at 7:40 am

    HONOLULU — President Obama arrived here late Friday to join his vacationing family in Kailua.

    Air Force One touched down at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickham just before 6 p.m. local time (that’s 11 p.m. on the East Coast) after a nine-hour flight that included an off-the-record stop by the president in the press section of the plane. His motorcade reached the home where the family is staying at 6:45 p.m.

    Bo the dog was also spotted running around aboard the plane.

    First lady Michelle Obama and daughters Malia and Sasha have been here since Saturday. The whole family is expected to leave on Jan. 2.
    HONOLULU — After a brief stop in Kailua to pick up his family, President Obama headed to Morimoto Restaurant here for dinner. 

    The restaurant is part of Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto’s empire and is at the other end of Waikiki from the hotel where the traveling press are staying.

    –Jennifer Epstein

  109. December 24, 2011 at 7:57 am

    So, Harry wants to get both the FAA and Highway bill dine by January 31st, before they expire.
    Great! Right.

    But, the senate is in session for 7 days and the House only 6, for that month!

    This is shameful!


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