Posts Tagged ‘chait

22
Feb
13

Rise and Shine

Four years ago – President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama dance while the band Earth, Wind and Fire performs at the Governors Ball in the East Room of the White House, Feb. 22, 2009 (Photo by Pete Souza)

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Today:

11:0: President Obama and VP Biden attend the Democratic Governors Association Meeting (Closed press)

11:30: Jay Carney briefs the press

12:15: President Obama holds a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan; VP Biden also attends

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Steve Benen: …. it’s puzzling that David Brooks based his entire column today on an easily-checked error. The conservative pundit insists President Obama “declines to come up with a proposal to address” next week’s sequester mess, adding, “The president hasn’t actually come up with a proposal to avert sequestration.”

I’ll never understand how conservative media personalities get factual claims like this so very wrong. If Brooks doesn’t like Obama’s sequester alternative, fine; he can write a column explaining his concerns. But why pretend the president’s detailed, already published plan, built on mutual concessions from both sides, doesn’t exist?

Full post here

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Jonathan Chait: ….. David Brooks today devotes his column to upholding the known truths of BipartisanThink. He lashes out at the obstinacy of the Republican Party and its refusal to compromise on the deficit. But he has to balance it out by asserting that President Obama, too, lacks any such plan….

….. This is demonstrably false. Whatever you think about the substantive merits of Obama’s plan, it does exist. Obama has a proposal to replace sequestration with long-term deficit reduction that includes a mix of entitlement spending cuts and higher revenue. He talks about it all the time…..

Full post here

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Greg Sargent: ….. some questions for the “blame it on both sides” crowd: ….. What more, if anything, could Obama actually do to win cooperation from today’s Republican Party on averting the sequester, short of giving in to the GOP demand that we replace it only with spending cuts? Republicans say no compromise to avert the sequester is acceptable. That’s not an exaggeration: It’s the party’s explicit, publicly stated position. What more specifically could Obama do to change this, short of accepting the GOP’s terms? If the answer is “nothing,” then why are both sides equally to blame?

Full post here

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NYT: President Obama is just seven days away from the first significant test of his second term as deep spending cuts loom, yet inside the White House a clear sense of confidence stands in contrast to the air of crisis that surrounded previous fiscal showdowns with Republicans.

The confrontation holds peril for both the president and Republicans. But for now, Mr. Obama believes he is acting from a greater position of strength, advisers say, pointing to several recent polls that show he holds an upper hand in the budget debate.

More here

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Read Steve Benen here

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NYT: Under pressure from the health care industry and consumer advocates, seven Republican governors are cautiously moving to expand Medicaid, giving an unexpected boost to President Obama’s plan to insure some 30 million more Americans.

The Supreme Court ruled last year that expanding Medicaid to include many more low-income people was an option under the new federal health care law, not a requirement, tossing the decision to the states and touching off battles in many capitols.

More here

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Read the stories here

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TPM: Vice President Biden told an audience Thursday in Connecticut that things have changed in the gun violence debate — the politician who has to worry now is the one who votes against new regulations on firearms purchases, rather than the one who votes for them.

That’s a big change in the conventional wisdom, which has long held that taking on the gun rights lobby is at best risky and at worst suicidal. But Biden’s not the only one saying it — Democrats are gearing up to make support for gun control a key plank in their 2014 platform.

More here

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OFA

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Read Stonekettle Station’s brilliant post on John McCain here (Thanks 99ts)

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Charles Pierce: It looks like the long slog of Chuck Hagel toward the corner office of the Pentagon …. may be coming to a successful conclusion. However, this will not happen until Huckleberry Closetcase and his followers have their say about this whole sad episode…again.

…. All 15 of the signatories to this appeal to bipartisanship are Republicans. They include some of the dimmest lights in the entire chandelier ….. Of course, the number of signatories jumps to 25 if you count all the phantoms hiding under Lindsey Graham’s divan. Many of whom appear to speak to him in Farsi.

Full post here

“Huckleberry Closetcase”? I wept.

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@TeaPartyCat

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@AriBerman

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TPM: How The Voting Rights Act, Now In Danger, Came To Pass And Shaped History

On March 15, 1965, a week after Alabama state troopers brutally attacked civil rights protesters in Selma, President Lyndon Johnson delivered a stirring speech to a joint session of Congress introducing a bill to end voter discrimination against blacks.

The law that it gave birth to, the Voting Rights Act, now hangs in the balance, with oral arguments next week before the Supreme Court. Five conservative justices are skeptical that a centerpiece of the nearly-half-century-old law is constitutional.

More here

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ThinkProgress: Rep. K. Michael “Mike” Conaway (R-TX) has been among the most vocal critics of federal spending, claiming that massive cuts would actually create more jobs. But as he publicly pushed to stop “wasteful government spending,” he privately lobbied the National Park Service to turn the childhood home of former President George W. Bush into a National Park.

More here

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Four years ago – President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama dance while the band Earth, Wind and Fire performs at the Governors Ball in the East Room of the White House, Feb. 22, 2009 (Photo by Pete Souza)

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MoooOOoooOOooorning!

31
Oct
12

Rise and Shine

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11:30 ET: VP Biden speaks at a campaign event in Sarasota, Florida (listed at CNN live streaming)

12:0: President Obama departs the White House

12:25 Arrives in Atlantic City and views storm damage with Governor Chris Christie

3:0: VP Biden speaks at at campaign event in Ocala, Florida (C-Span)

3:15: PBO departs Atlantic City

4:25: Arrives at the White House

(Need to check these times, they’re different in every schedule I see)

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President Obama will return to the campaign trail on Thursday after taking three days off to oversee storm response. He will attend rallies in Green Bay, Wis.; Boulder, Colo.; and Las Vegas.

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Jonathan Chait (NY Mag): …. Obama can boast a record of accomplishment that bests any president since Roosevelt, and has fewer demerits on his record than any of them, including Roosevelt. The only president that comes close in gross positive accomplishment is Lyndon Johnson, whose successes were overwhelmed by his failures ….

….What can be said without equivocation is that Obama has proven himself morally, intellectually, temperamentally, and strategically. In my lifetime, or my parents’, he is easily the best president. On his own terms, and not merely as a contrast to an unacceptable alternative, he overwhelmingly deserves reelection.

Full article here

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NYT: Chris Christie was supposed to be one of Mitt Romney‘s most aggressive surrogates, constantly attacking President Obama in the waning days of the presidential campaign.

Instead, Mr. Christie on Tuesday repeatedly heaped praise on Mr. Obama for his leadership of the federal government’s response to the storm that slammed into his state on Monday …. he was effusive about Mr. Obama’s administration, calling the storm response “wonderful,” “excellent” and “outstanding.”

….  some Republicans have already begun grumbling about Mr. Christie’s over-the-top praise of the president at such a crucial time in the election…

…. In several appearances on morning news programs on Tuesday, Mr. Christie went out of his way to thank the president personally….

More here

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David Firestone (NYT): On a day when millions of Americans face serious hardship as they recover from Hurricane Sandy’s damage, Mitt Romney clearly decided it would be crass to campaign in a conventional way. So he turned a scheduled rally in Kettering, Ohio, this morning into a “storm relief event,” and posed before piles of donated canned goods.

…. He described such donations as “the American way” …. but the real “American way” is quite different. Most disaster agencies don’t want donated goods; they need cash. And in the modern era, the most important cash comes from taking people’s tax dollars and distributing them in the form of federal aid to communities hard-hit by a disaster. Because that involves the federal government, it is tainted in the minds of Mr. Romney and his party. It is compulsory, and thus not an offering of the heart.

….. Mr. Romney ignored all questions about his plans for federal emergency management. It’s probably embarrassing to admit those plans consist largely of collecting soup cans.

Full post here

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Cagle

Cagle

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Click here to see the rest of the post

16
Dec
11

rise and shine

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2:00: First Lady Michelle Obama visits Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling

2:10: President Obama delivers remarks at the 71st General Assembly of the Union for Reform Judaism

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Thanks amk ;-)

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About today’s AP-GfK poll – OMG! Doom! Gloom!

As GOPolitico told us, white people hate the President!! Real bad!

The best bit was when they quoted Ron Fournier saying the President “only won 40%” of the white seniors’ vote in 2008 and “his approval rating with them now is 41%”. Em, I was never too hot at math ….. but is that, eh, not technically an increase? :???:

Any way, not surprisingly, the economy remains the number one concern of those polled. You’ll get all the bad news everywhere today, what will be largely ignored:

* After the jobless rate fell to 8.6% last month (its lowest level since March 2009), the President’s approval rating on handling unemployment rose 5% to 45% in the poll.

* 20% say the economy got better in the past month, up from 6% two months ago (64% said it stayed the same)

* 15% said it got worse, down from 49% two months ago

* Respondents describing the economy as “very poor” fell from 43% in October to 34% in the latest poll, the lowest since May.

* 60% say the financial situation in their own household is good, up 6%

* 30% blamed the President for the economy, compared to 43% who blame Bush

And:

* Despite the struggles with the economy, the President still beats Romney in a match-up: 47 to 46.

* The President beats the Newt 51-42.

* Among independents, it’s even better. The President beats Romney 45-41 and the Newt 54-31.

And buried in the last line in Time’s report on the poll:

“Among those with annual household incomes of $50,000 or less, Obama’s approval rating on unemployment climbed to 53 percent from 43 percent in October.

Get that? Climbed 10%.

* 60% approve of how the President is handling terrorism, 59% say he will “keep America safe”. Not bad for an appeaser, eh?

* 53% say he is a “strong leader”

* 76% say he is “likable”

There you go – the bits you won’t hear today. And hey, wait til the fella actually starts campaigning against Romgrich ;-)

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OFA: Headlines over the past few weeks have shown with hard numbers how President Obama’s Affordable Care Act is helping young people and seniors. The reform allows young people to stay on their parents’ health insurance until they turn 26 and helps Medicare recipients save money on prescription drugs.

Take a look at this infographic summing up how the Affordable Care Act is impacting millions of Americans – then share it to pass on the good news:

Link – pass it on!

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Oooops:

Texas Monthly: As most readers know, every January TEXAS MONTHLY picks a Bum Steer of the Year, an honor conferred on whatever individual we feel has been responsible for the biggest screw-up, gaffe, fumble, stumble, train wreck, or humiliation of the past twelve months. This year, as the above cover makes pretty darn clear, our Bum Steer of the Year is Governor Rick Perry.

More here

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Jonathan Chait (NY Mag): With Ron Paul ascending in Iowa, winning the hearts of independents, and even the endorsement of Andrew Sullivan, it’s worth pointing something out: Ron Paul is not a kindly old libertarian who just wants everybody to be free. He’s a really creepy bigot.

…. Paul comes out of an intellectual tradition called “paleolibertarianism,” which is a version of libertarianism heavily tinged with far-right cultural views …. Paul is tied in deep and extensive ways to neo-Confederates, and somewhat less tightly to the right-wing militia movement. His newsletter, which he wrote and edited for years, was a constant organ of vile racism and homophobia ….. Fear and hatred of blacks and gays, along with a somewhat less pronounced paranoia about Jewish dual loyalty, are fundamental elements of his thinking….

Full article here

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Link

I’m guessing you very lovely people might have been inspired by the wonder that is Donna Dem – you pushed The Obama Diary past its fundraising target at OFA – thank you soooooooooo much!

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Meanwhile, if you’d like to say THANK YOU to Donna Dem for last night’s gorgeous account of her phone call with the President, you can help push her towards her mindboggling $12,000 target – link

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Almost forgot, it’s Friday!

21
Nov
11

afternoon all

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President Barack Obama signs legislation that will provide tax credits to help put veterans back to work during a ceremony at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building. From left are, Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., Sen. Patty Murray. D-Wash., first lady Michelle Obama, Dr. Jill Biden, Veterans Affairs Secretary Erik Shinseki and Vice President Joe Biden

Jason Hansman (WH): Today is a historic day for veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan. When President Obama signs the VOW to Hire Heroes Act into law, an entire generation of new vets will be provided much-needed practical support to transition from combat to careers.  As an Iraq vet I am privileged to lead the membership team at Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA), the country’s first and largest nonpartisan organization committed to our newest veterans. And I speak for all of us when I thank the lawmakers who worked so hard together, putting aside party, to get this bill passed. We also thank the President for his leadership on the issue – for acting so quickly on this legislation and for bringing national attention to the veterans’ unemployment crisis.

More here

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Oh dear, Andrew Breitbart’s buddy haz a sad:

Michael Walsh (National Review): ….. the WaPo’s Chris Cillizza makes the same point I made …. You may think Obama is eminently beatable, but unlike Mitt Romney, he has a solid base that is a dead-certain lock to be there for him next year ….

…. Meanwhile, “electable” Romney stays moored at around a quarter of the GOP primary electorate, and as a “frontrunner” has been happily chucked overboard for every not-Romney flavor of the month, including Bachmann, Perry, Cain, and now Mr. Newt. Head-to-head with Romney next year, Obama will sink him handily.

….. Say-Anything Mitt has no home port and is unlikely to find one beyond the generic anti-Obama vote. Which, alas, will not be big enough or motivated enough to evict Cap’n Barry from the White House bridge …. Indeed, the campaign will begin and end with this photograph:

Sorry, but that’s the truth. Say what you will about Sarah Palin, but she would have brought a super-energized base of productive taxpaying citizens with her that might have competed favorably with the Obamabots. But she broke their hearts – and damaged herself – by teasing and then not running, leaving the GOP bereft of a candidate who could match BHO II’s charisma.

What can be done at this late date, I have no idea. And neither do the Republicans.

;-)

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Jonathan Chait (NY Mag): …. Here is my explanation: Liberals are dissatisfied with Obama because liberals, on the whole, are incapable of feeling satisfied with a Democratic president …. they compare Obama with an imaginary president – either an imaginary Obama or a fantasy version of a past president.

…. His single largest policy accomplishment, the Affordable Care Act, combines two sweeping goals that Democrats have tried and failed to achieve for decades. Likewise, the Recovery Act contained both short-term stimulative measures and increased public investment in infrastructure, green energy, and the like. The Dodd-Frank financial reform, while failing to end the financial industry as we know it, is certainly far from toothless, as measured by the almost fanatical determination of Wall Street and Republicans in Congress to roll it back.

Beneath these headline measures is a second tier of accomplishments carrying considerable historic weight (see article for list)

…. Of the postwar presidents, only Johnson exceeds Obama’s domestic record, and Johnson’s successes must be measured against a crushing defeat in Vietnam. Obama, by contrast, has enjoyed a string of foreign-policy successes ….

So, if Obama is the most successful liberal president since Roosevelt, that would make him a pretty great president, right?

Full article here

Thanks gobrooklyn and saintroscoe

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Thank you proudmemberofglobalzero – you see more videos like this at Daniel Tilson’s YouTube channel

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Ooooooooooh, so close!

Link

14
Apr
11

more reaction to that speech

Eleanor Clift (Daily Beast): In his carefully worded deficit speech, the president assured Democrats that his inner liberal is alive and well – slamming Paul Ryan’s budget proposal as “deeply pessimistic,” and vowing that the radical plan is “not going to happen as long as I’m president.”

Obama is a man who rations his emotions, but watching his speech today, and listening to the direction of his reforms, his inner liberal is alive and well.

He would direct less money to the top 1 percent and hold the line for people who have no clout on Capitol Hill. He can’t deliver everything liberals want, but this fight is as much about leadership as it is about the numbers. After a slow start, Obama is suited up and ready for the battle…

…After commending Republican Paul Ryan for coming forward with a plan, he deftly skewered it as “deeply pessimistic” that if enacted would lead to “a fundamentally different America,” one that will leave some 50 million Americans to fend for themselves…

The central issue of our day should be jobs, but Republican messaging and the arrival of the Tea Party has made it the country’s rising debt. Obama enters the debate at an optimal moment when Republicans have put down markers that many Americans find objectionable – from trying to defund Planned Parenthood to privatizing Medicare. A lot of Democrats would like Obama to just say no, but that’s not Obama’s inclination. There is a serious challenge in getting the budget under control. It’s not a crisis, but it is a partisan confrontation about the role of government, and Obama showed in his speech today that he is ready to seize the moment on behalf of his party’s ideals and constituents.

More here

Michael Shear (NYT): In the hours before President Obama’s 44-minute speech on the nation’s mounting debt, liberal groups were whipped up into a frenzy, warning that Mr. Obama was poised to capitulate — once again, in their view — to Republican philosophy on taxes, the deficit and spending cuts.

On Tuesday, one group, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, wrote its members that in the upcoming speech, “President Obama will do what no Republican president has been able to do: put Medicare and Medicaid on the table for potential cuts.”

The e-mail was an indication that there remains deep suspicion of Mr. Obama, at least among what a White House official once called the “professional left.” The group warned that such a speech would add to a politically dangerous softening of Democratic support for the president.

In fact, the address on Wednesday appears to have done exactly the opposite for Mr. Obama. The speech’s several starkly partisan moments and his willingness to draw clear lines in the sand over the issues of taxes and Medicare sparked a significant amount of praise among liberal members of the president’s party.

“Liberals have wanted a full-throated affirmation of why government is a good thing,” wrote Jonathan Bernstein, a political blogger. “Obama delivered, with perhaps his strongest case for a liberal vision of government that he’s given so far during his presidency.”

More here

Jonathan Cohn (New Republic): President Obama’s speech today was about policy and politics. But it was also about principles, as Obama made clear early in his remarks…

…If there is an essence of the liberal vision for America, that passage captures it. It’s the idea that a modern, enlightened society promises economic security to all, notwithstanding illness, accident of birth, or age. The liberal vision is not an imperative to establish equality, as its detractors sometimes claim. But it is expectation that government will guarantee sustenance, peace of mind, and simple dignity – that the pursuit of these goals will bolster, rather than impede, freedom.

In the era of Roosevelt and Truman, Kennedy and Johnson, Democrats talked openly and proudly of this mission. But in the last few years, at least, Democrats have seemed less comfortable with such rhetoric, or at least comfortable with their loftier ideals than Republicans have been with theirs. This contrast has been vivid in fights over the economy, climate change, and health care, with Democrats making sensible, nuanced arguments about growth rates and Republicans making hyperbolic, simplistic claims about “socialism.”

Not on Wednesday. The president can seem like a compulsive mediator, desperately seeking opportunities to forge common understanding among adversaries. It’s an admirable quality and, frequently, an aggravating one. But in the budget speech Obama drew a clear contrast between his vision of America and that of the Republicans….

…Obama has laid out a credible plan for reducing deficits and, more important, he has described a vision of America he wants to defend. For today, at least, that seems like enough.

Full article here

Jonathan Chait (New Republic): Obama’s Speech: The Umpire Strikes Back….. The President expressed moral outrage in a way I’ve never heard him do before, and in a way I didn’t think he was capable of. After his spokesmen have feebly pawed at Ryan’s plan for lacking “balance,” it was jolting to hear Obama lambaste Ryan with language like this:

“I will not allow Medicare to become a voucher program that leaves seniors at the mercy of the insurance industry, with a shrinking benefit to pay for rising costs. I will not tell families with children who have disabilities that they have to fend for themselves.”

This attack, by the way, is completely fair. Moreover, Obama made the crucial step of attacking Republicans for doing these things while cutting taxes for the rich. It’s impossible to overstate just how commanding a position Obama holds here with regard to public opinion. People overwhelmingly favor higher taxes on the rich. They even more overwhelmingly oppose cutting Medicare. The Republican plan to impose deep Medicare cuts in order to free up room to cut taxes for the rich is ridiculously, off-the-charts unpopular. If Republicans want to take this position, Obama has to make them pay dearly.

The most important line in Obama speech was his explanation that Republicans forced him to extend upper-bracket tax cuts, but “I refuse to renew them again”. That’s the line in the sand I’ve been looking for.

More here

Boston Globe Editorial: President Obama … gave a cogent explanation for how mounting government debt will drive up interest rates for businesses and consumers and hinder the nation’s ability to protect its interests abroad. And he noted the public’s complicity in the problem, stating that “most Americans tend to dislike government spending in the abstract, but they like the stuff it buys”. When two-thirds of the federal budget goes to Social Security, health care, and national defense, there’s no use in pretending, as the Tea Party does, that cutting waste and abuse alone will get government spending under control.

Obama made a strong case that part of the fix should include raising taxes on the wealthiest Americans. While the incomes of 90 percent of Americans have declined in recent years, he noted, those of the wealthiest 1 percent have skyrocketed. And not, one might add, because the bottom 90 percent are lazier than the top 1 percent. The sacrifice should begin with those who’ve benefited disproportionately from changes in the economy.

On the spending side, Obama made it clear he opposed House Republican budget guru Paul Ryan’s plan to cut Medicare’s costs by turning it into a voucher program, and offered instead the much fuzzier idea of using a commission to reduce the cost of health care itself. While Ryan’s plan has the advantage of clarity, applying it without also overhauling a woefully inefficient health system necessarily means that many senior citizens would go without care they need.

…While most Americans are understandably concerned about reducing the federal deficit, the country’s economic future depends on its quality of education and infrastructure, as well. With diligence and good will, Congress can find the right balance. Obama deserves credit for challenging both parties to do so.

More here

02
Mar
11

oh mike……

Jonathan Chait (New Republic): Apropos of Mike Huckabee’s quasi-endorsement of the “Kenyan anti-colonialism” theory of Barack Obama, there’s something I’ve been wondering about this. The theory holds that Barack Obama, through his father, acquired a worldview twisted by opposition to British colonialism.

But the people most enamored of this theory are also highly enamored of the Tea Party, which is steeped in worship of… opposition to British colonialism!

Wouldn’t this theory mean that our Founding Fathers were also twisted by opposition to British colonialism? Or maybe the idea is that we had a right to throw off the British yolk, but the Kenyans should have put up with it, because the British occupation there was so much more benign.

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Love this – and this:

Joe Klein (Time): ….Mike Huckabee made a toxic fool of himself on the subject of Barack Obama’s upbringing and heritage…

…Huckabee was never an entirely plausible candidate for President … but he always struck me as a good guy, more concerned about working-class America than most of his rivals. These comments, however, and his subsequent lie that he really meant Indonesia not Kenya, really show a demented, perverse sensibility, and they demonstrate some of the ugliness at the heart of Obama hatred.

I’m talking about the Mau Mau comment, especially. When I was growing up, Mau Mau was shorthand for: Extremely Scary Black People. The brutality of the Mau Mau rebellion was legendary (and, who knows, perhaps even accurate). It became a term of art in the sixties: to mau-mau was to intimidate white people. (As a young reporter in Boston, I covered a would-be black militant group that called itself, with brilliant irony, De Mau Mau.) To associate Barack Obama with the Mau Mau rebellion is to feed all the worst, paranoid fears of Glenn Beck’s America – and, as any sane person knows, completely ridiculous.

But with Newt Gingrich … about to enter the presidential race, the question of where and how Barack Obama grew up should be a bright line test for every Republican candidate. If a candidate is willing to endorse, or equivocate, on these racist fantasies, we of the wildly powerless Mainstream Media Priesthood should shun and shame him or her. At the very least, a candidate who seeks to run against Obama should know where and how Obama grew up: in Hawaii, with a four-year detour to Indonesia, raised mostly by his white, Republican, Kansan grandparents.




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