Posts Tagged ‘liars


rise and shine

Steve Benen: There were modest expectations for the new jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and in this case, the economy met them. A net total of 120,000 jobs were created in November, which is just about what economists and analysts said would happen. The same report showed the overall unemployment rate dropping from 9% to 8.6%.

As is always the case, there was a significant gap between the private and public sectors. Businesses added 140,000 jobs last month, while budget cuts forced the public sector to shed 20,000 jobs, which continues to be a major drag on the overall employment picture.

Republican policymakers, it’s worth noting, are eager to force more public-sector layoffs, making the jobs landscape worse on purpose, while Democrats have fought to do the opposite.

Full post here

Steven Walker


President Barack Obama shows military officials the White House Christmas Tree in the Blue Room following a meeting, Dec. 1. The 18-foot-6 inch balsam fir is decorated with holiday cards created by military children and ornaments featuring medals, badges, and patches from all of the military branches. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)


White House Live



USA Today: Later this morning, President Obama and former president Bill Clinton will take a tour of a building blocks away from the White House and announce a $4 billion initiative to improve the energy efficiency of government and private-sector buildings. Obama is scheduled to deliver remarks to reporters after the tour.


Steve Benen: The Senate held two votes on extending a payroll tax cut for more than 160 million Americans, most of whom are middle class. As expected, Republicans killed them both. What was unexpected, though, was the vote totals on the proposals.

First up was the Democratic plan, which would have kept the payroll break in place for another year, and pay for it with a slight surtax on millionaires and billionaires. A 51-member Senate majority supported the bill, but that was far short of the 60 votes needed to overcome a GOP filibuster. It’s worth noting that one Republican, Sen. Susan Collins (R) of Maine, broke ranks and supported the Dems’ proposal….

…. What was just as interesting was the next vote, when the Senate considered the GOP alternative, which would also keep the payroll break in place, but pay for it largely through a pay freeze on federal workers …. it was rejected 78 to 20, with more than half of Republicans opposed. Yep, most Republican senators opposed their own party’s legislation….

Full post here


Spiegel: The US Republican race is dominated by ignorance, lies and scandals. The current crop of candidates have shown such a basic lack of knowledge that they make George W. Bush look like Einstein. The Grand Old Party is ruining the entire country’s reputation.

Africa is a country. In Libya, the Taliban reigns. Muslims are terrorists; most immigrants are criminal; all Occupy protesters are dirty. And women who feel sexually harassed – well, they shouldn’t make such a big deal about it.

Welcome to the wonderful world of the US Republicans. Or rather, to the twisted world of what they call their presidential campaigns. For months now, they’ve been traipsing around the country with their traveling circus, from one debate to the next, one scandal to another, putting themselves forward for what’s still the most powerful job in the world.

As it turns out, there are no limits to how far they will stoop.

Full article here

Thanks JER



Sacbee: President Barack Obama, who is a fervent basketball fan, will get his NBA fix next month but his campaign will have to postpone the Obama Classic fundraiser that was to feature more than two dozen professional basketball stars.

The campaign on Thursday notified ticket holders the Dec. 12 event would now be held in the summer.

The fundraising all-star game was planned while a lockout put the NBA season in jeopardy, and top players had committed to play. But team owners and players reached an agreement and games are set to begin on Christmas Day.



Washington Post: There’s little doubt President Barack Obama has won high esteem among Native Americans by breaking through a logjam of inaction on issues that matter to them.

The Obama administration this week unveiled sweeping changes to federal tribal-land leasing rules that had not been touched in 50 years. Obama nominated a Native American to the federal bench, signed a law renewing the Indian Health Care Act and settled a tribal royalties lawsuit that had dragged over three administrations.

…. Obama on Friday speaks for the third time with the nation’s 565 tribal leaders in Washington….  Obama has gone beyond lip service, said Bill John Baker, principal chief of the Cherokee Nation in Oklahoma, and “backed up his words with actions that have made a positive impact on the lives of Native people.”

…. Jacqueline Johnson Pata, executive director of the National Congress of American Indians and an Alaska native, said native peoples’ enthusiasm for Obama goes deeper. Obama has embraced Native American tribal sovereignty preserved in the Constitution, court decisions and treaty agreements and made that the foundation for his administration’s dealings with tribes, Pata said.

…. “I think we have made strides under the Obama administration the likes of which tribes have not seen for 30 years,” said Stacy Bohlen, executive director of the National Indian Health Board…..

Full article here



Jonathan Capehart: …. GOP hopeful Newt Gingrich defended his stance against certain child labor laws during a campaign stop in Iowa Thursday, saying that children born into poverty aren’t accustomed to working unless it involves crime.

“Really poor children, in really poor neighborhoods have no habits of working and have nobody around them who works so they have no habit of showing up on Monday,” Gingrich claimed. “They have no habit of staying all day, they have no habit of I do this and you give me cash unless it is illegal,” he added.

….. Gingrich’s blanket condemnation of “really poor children, in really poor neighborhoods” is unbelievably disgusting. And it’s disrespectful of the overwhelming majority of those children and their families who live their lives with far more integrity and far less cash than Gingrich ever will.

Full post here



In case you missed them, lots more photos from last night’s Christmas concert here


Morning everyone ;-)



Glenn Kessler (Washington Post):

“Obamacare is killing jobs. We know that from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.” – Bachmann

Bachmann won’t give up on this factoid, even though we debunked it seven months ago and said it was worth three Pinocchios. It’s just not correct, and remains a perfect example of how politicians twist the facts….


“He only went along with the Libyan mission because the United Nations told him to.” – Santorum

Actually, Santorum has it backwards. The United States requested the U.N. resolution to gain international backing for the NATO-led intervention in the Libyan uprising.


“The idea that we would put Americans’ economy in jeopardy based on scientific theory that’s not settled yet to me is just – is nonsense … just because you have a group of scientists that have stood up and said, here is the fact – Galileo got outvoted for a spell.” – Perry

We previously awarded Perry Four Pinocchios for his comments suggesting scientists were increasingly saying climate change was a fiction. We will note he repeatedly did not answer the question at the debate about whether he could name a scientists he thought was credible on the issue….


“In our state, our plan covered 8 percent of the people, the uninsured. His plan has taken over a 100 percent of the people.” – Romney

It is simply not true, no matter how often candidates say that the Obama health care law represents socialized medicine or took over one-sixth of the economy … Obama’s law was modeled closely on the law passed by Romney when he was governor of Massachusetts – an inconvenient fact that Romney tries hard to run away from. His comparison here is misleading, since both plans try to deal with the problem of the uninsured by requiring an individual mandate.


“As a matter of fact, what he’s done is, he’s said in fact to Israel that they need to shrink back to their indefensible 1967 borders.” – Bachmann

Obama never said this. The president in May did give a controversial speech, in which he said the de facto border of 1967 should be a starting point for negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians, with agreed swaps of territory. A few days later, he further clarified his comments to make clear he was not saying the lines should be Israel’s border, to the point that he was thanked by the Israeli prime minister in a speech to Congress. We’ve given Bachmann Four Pinocchios for making a similar claim in the past.

More here


‘dems dropping bombs on mckinsey’

Greg Sargent: Yet another interesting turn in the case of the mystery health care study … the consulting firm McKinsey and Company recently released a study that – unlike other studies – found that larger numbers of employers plan to drop insurance for workers because of the Affordable Care Act. Despite multiple requests from the White House, Congressional Dems, and news outlets, the company is refusing to release key details about the study’s methodology that would enable us to evaluate its integrity.

…Ironically, the author of an Urban Institute study used by the White House to refute the McKinsey report is none other than McKinsey’s own Bowen Garrett, the chief economist at their Center for U.S. Health System Reform. In his Urban Institute paper, Garrett dismantles “claims that the ACA would cause major declines in [employer-sponsored health insurance],” calling them, “greatly exaggerated.”

Wait, you mean McKinsey published a study claiming 30% of employers will drop employee coverage, in direct contradiction to the expressed position of one of their head health honchos?


Update from Greg Sargent: Wow. Dems are very quickly ratcheting up the pressure on McKinsey and Company – meaning it’s likely that we’ll see an increase in media scrutiny of the company’s continuing refusal to cough up the methodology of its now-controversial study on the Affordable Care Act.

In a very big development, Senate Finance Committee chairman Max Baucus has written a detailed letter spelling out 13 very specific questions about how the study’s methodology was conducted …

I’m also told that three – count ‘em, three – House committees will send a letter today to McKinsey making the same request.

…This constitutes real pressure, and underscores how high the stakes have become for Democrats, now that Republicans have been regularly citing the study as a weapon against the health law.

Read full post here


Paul Krugman: …. when the McKinsey alleged study made headlines, the firm was pressed to explain how the study was conducted. And it has refused to answer.

It’s hard to escape the conclusion that the study was embarrassingly bad – maybe it was a skewed sample, maybe the questions were leading, maybe there was no real data at all. Whatever.

The important thing is that this must not stand. You can’t enter the political debate with strong claims about what the evidence says, then refuse to produce that evidence.

And it’s especially bad when the media give your claims lots of attention, while barely covering the furor over the refusal to explain where those claims come from.


You can see the original post about the study here


“gop response to jobs report: the earth is flat and 2 + 2 = 5”

Andrew Leonard (Salon): ….House Republicans pinned the blame for Friday’s disappointing jobs report squarely on the White House, saying the Obama administration’s “over-taxing, over-regulating and over-spending” has stifled economic growth. “One look at the jobs report should be enough to show the White House it’s time to get serious about cutting spending and dealing with our ailing economy,” Speaker John Boehner said.

How many blatant untruths can a Republican speaker of the House stuff into one sentence? Quite a few!

1) President Obama has cut taxes. His stimulus bill included tax cuts for 95 percent of all American working families. He signed off on the extension of the Bush tax cuts, while throwing in a new payroll tax cut for good measure.

2) Over-regulating? …Let’s just take a look at the two sectors of the economy that we might expect to have been affected by the two biggest signature pieces of legislation signed into law by Obama – the Affordable Care Act and the Dodd-Frank bank reform act … the healthcare sector has averaged 24,000 news jobs a month over the past year – and accounted for almost a third of May’s overall 54,000 gain. Meanwhile, Wall Street had its fourth most profitable year ever in 2010. If that’s over-regulation, we need more of it!

3) Private economic forecasters … generally agree that without Obama’s stimulus spending, unemployment would be higher.

We could raise other issues. We could ask: What changed between May and the previous six months in which job growth was relatively strong? But that would require examining actual facts about what is going on the world, like Japan’s recession or high gas prices or declining government spending, particularly at the state level.

More here


beyond belief…..

ThinkProgress: The Washington Post’s blogger Jennifer Rubin reports that the neoconservative Emergency Committee for Israel has a new ad accusing President Obama of “siding with the Palestinians” in his May 19 speech….

….Yet here’s what ECI’s own executive director Noah Pollak tweeted about the speech as it was happening:

So, first Pollak thought the line about the ’67 borders was no big deal ….. but then, when there was an opportunity to attack President Obama, the line about the ’67 borders magically became a dangerous betrayal of Israel. You really couldn’t ask for a better demonstration of bad faith.

One shouldn’t, of course, expect Jennifer Rubin herself to report any of this. In addition to being Pollak’s former colleague at Commentary, back in February Rubin took a trip to Israel, courtesy of the Emergency Committee for Israel.

Full post and video here


Rubin’s email address is – in case you’d like to question her about her less than honest reporting.


Comment of the Day – StR: “Maybe he’ll say his twitter was hacked.”



inconvenient truths

Crooks and Liars: …. House Republicans swaggered into the White House Wednesday for the latest negotiation to end their economic hostage taking. One, Rep. Jeff Landry of Louisiana, refused to attend and be “lectured to by a president whose failed policies have put our children and grandchildren in a huge burden of debt.”

Sadly for Rep. Landry, the nation’s mounting debt is largely attributable to wars, a recession and tax policies President Obama inherited from his predecessor. Worse still, the Ryan 2012 budget proposal backed by almost every Republican in both houses of Congress would not only drain another $4 trillion in tax revenue from the Treasury, but fail all of the spending and balanced budget targets they themselves propose. Nevertheless, Republicans who voted seven times to double the debt ceiling under George W. Bush would risk the national economic suicide they admit would come to pass if their demands are not met.

Here, then, are 10 Inconvenient Truths About the Debt Ceiling:

1. Republican Leaders Agree U.S. Default Would Be a “Financial Disaster”
2. Ronald Reagan Tripled the National Debt
3. George W. Bush Doubled the National Debt
4. Republicans Voted Seven Times to Raise Debt Ceiling for President Bush
5. Federal Taxes Are Now at a 60 Year Low
6. Bush Tax Cuts Didn’t Pay for Themselves or Spur “Job Creators”
7. Ryan Budget Delivers Another Tax Cut Windfall for Wealthy
8. Ryan Budget Will Require Raising Debt Ceiling – Repeatedly
9. Tax Cuts Drive the Next Decade of Debt
10. $3 Trillion Tab for Unfunded Wars Remains Unpaid

More here



oh, these people…..


here we go again….

Think Progress: This morning, Fox News hosted Rep. Allen West to talk about the budget cuts that the Tea Party wants. In order to frame the discussion as supporting West’s position, which is anti-compromise, the right-wing network cited a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll that it claimed showed that most Americans do not want the Republicans to compromise. Host Martha MacCallum claimed the poll showed that “56 percent of Americans say that [Republicans] should stick to their positions.” Watch it:

The problem with the poll that Fox cited is that it doesn’t say anything like what they claim it does. In fact, it appears that they actually switched the numbers around. The poll in question does find that 56 percent of respondents do not want to see the GOP compromise, but the question was directed to self-identified Republicans — meaning that Fox essentially took the number for Republicans and claimed that it represented all Americans:

But hey, it’s hardly the first time Fox reversed poll results to fit its agenda – here


this billion dollar thing….

Crooks and Liars: You know, there are just some things that look and sound ridiculous … this is one of them. John King looks like a fool with his touchy-feely screen while fantasizing about what one billion dollars could do.

His reference to one billion dollars goes to the current meme about what the Obama campaign 2012 might end up spending. Of course, he forgets to note a few things, like the absence of corporate cash funneled through anonymous 501(c)(4) associations, and the DNC’s announcement that they won’t accept corporate funds for the convention. I also thought it was interesting that King chose red states’ deficits as his comparison point for what that billion could do. Poor red states. They won’t see much of that money.

But you know, one billion dollars is an insane amount of money to have to raise to keep ahead of the TeaBirchers’ funding paths. As I write, I’m busily tracking over $5 million funneled through one public donor-advised fund to right-wing “policy” organizations. So while the Republicos want to make a big stinking deal out of the money spent by Obama’s side of things, just remember they’ll end up spending more between their secret money tunnels, their anonymous corporate donors’ ad buys, and the inevitable stirring-up of the “angry base” by the Tea Party.

More here


Now, it is my fervent wish that the President’s campaign will raise several billion dollars to see off the Republicans’ anonymous corporate donations (much of it from the likes of the Koch brothers and from overseas).

But, naturally, the President is being attacked – from the right and far left – for being associated with something as ‘obscene’ as a billion dollar campaign.

So, who in the President’s team boasted that his campaign would raise a billion dollars? The truth? No one. But King suggests it was David Axelrod:

King: Listen to top Obama political advisor David Axelrod telling us over lunch recently the fundraising goal could top one billion dollars.

Check the transcript:

King: What’s the ball park we’re talking about, you see people throwing around figures like a billion dollars. More than a billion dollars.

Axelrod: I’m not going to put a number on it, obviously that would be more than we spent last time, I don’t know in this economy if that’s going to be that case. But it will be a lot of money, more than anybody would like to see spent…. (CNN cuts tape)


So, it’s King – and only King – who mentions “a billion dollars”, not Axelrod – who actually shows some sensitivity about the issue in light of the fact that these are difficult times for many Americans.

So, King distorts what Axelrod said, then, em, delights his viewers with a snarky piece based on his distortion. Quality journalism, Mr King! Can’t wait for your piece on the Koch brothers and overseas funding of the Republicans’ election efforts ;-)


Twitter: @JohnKingCNN

CNN’s contact page for John King here

John King on Facebook


union thugs! oh, wait.

TPM: It’s looking like the alleged vandalism of Wisconsin State Sen. Dan Kapanke’s car may not … have been vandalism at all.

Kapanke, one of the Republicans being targeted for recall by Democrats in the wake of Gov. Scott Walker’s newly-passed law curtailing public employee unions, had previously said his car’s windshield was smashed in Madison, allegedly on March 9 – the day that the bill was passed. He has also stated that he has received death threats, and that nails were scattered on his driveway back home.

….police who inspected the vehicle have characterized the damage to his windshield as only a crack, consistent with a stone that would have been picked up in the tire of another car and then thrown behind.

After inspecting the vehicle the officer told Kapanke the “chip and the crack” looked like a stone chip and “not someone hitting the windshield,” according to the police report. The report indicates two officers with the State Highway Patrol, including an accident reconstruction specialist, also examined Kapanke’s windshield.

They determined “the angle of the impact of the object hitting the windshield is consistent with a stone being picked up from another vehicle tire and launched into the air,” causing the crack … another officer reviewed video from a parking garage camera located near Kapanke’s car. The officer reported no one was seen near Kapanke’s car or damaging the windshield March 9.


‘will 2010 medicare ads come back to haunt gop?’

This is a real Tea Party banner. Seriously.

CBS: The proposed 2012 budget that Republican Rep. Paul Ryan put forward today seemingly plays right into Democrats’ hands by proposing massive changes to Medicare…

The Republican party launched aggressive attacks against Democrats in the midterm elections for voting for President Obama’s health care reforms, which also included significant changes to the program….

Ryan’s plan would dramatically transform the health care plan for seniors. Instead of providing those over 65 with government-run health care, seniors starting in 2022 would receive “premium support” (subsidies given directly to insurance providers) to get the health care of their choice from private insurers….

Many Republicans have praised Ryan’s efforts today, but much of the praise has been reserved for Ryan’s leadership, rather than the substance of the proposal itself. Some of those Republicans may have 2010 in mind, when the GOP hammered the Democratic health care plan, which included $500 billion in Medicare cuts.

“Seniors do not want senators fooling with Medicare,” Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said on the Senate floor on Dec. 4, 2009, ahead of the congressional votes on the legislation. “Let me say that again: Seniors do not want senators fooling with Medicare. They want us to fix it, to strengthen it… not raid it like a giant piggy bank to create some entirely new government program.”

…the Democratic health care plan provided potent fodder for the midterm elections. Republican Dan Coats, now the junior senator for Indiana, ran an ad against his 2010 opponent, Democratic Rep. Brad Ellsworth that blasted him for failing to “protect seniors”…….Coats office has not responded to an inquiry from Hotsheet as to whether he supports Ryan’s proposed budget.

Similarly, Republican Pat Toomey, now the junior senator for Pennsylvania, ran a 2010 ad railing against his opponent Democratic Rep. Joe Sestak for supporting the health care overhaul.

…”This budget is more proof that Tea Party extremists have toppled the Republican House leadership and completely taken over,” said Democratic Sen. Frank Lautenberg (N.J.). “The House Republican Tea Partiers started with cuts to Head Start, education and medical research, and now they want to privatize Medicare. If you are a child seeking an education or an older American seeking health care, the Tea Party budget is toxic to your future.”

Democratic Rep. Lynn Woolsey (Calif.) said the Ryan plan is “one of the most callous and reckless proposals I’ve seen during 18 years in Congress” and it amounts to “destroying Medicare.”

Democratic Sen. Max Baucus (Mont.) said that expert analysis shows the Ryan plan would “make deep cuts to the Medicare benefits seniors count on. It would end Medicare as we know it and funnel Medicare dollars directly into private insurance companies’ pockets.”

Full article here


digby? i think i love you.

Digby: …it started off well, calling out the Governor on his union breaking goals. But then he … proceeded to denigrate the protesters as fools….

I’m so glad we have Jon Stewart around to reduce all political activities of ordinary people into a clown show. It makes it much easier to maintain our ironic distance. Silly people making noises in public is really beneath all smart liberals … the only respectable way for people to engage in politics is to let Jon Stewart explain it all to us in our special coded hipster humor…

… he’s telling liberals that it’s more important to behave in a dignified, fair fashion than to stand up for your beliefs in a way that could be perceived as unseemly or one-sided. That makes you as bad as the other side.

Except, of course, it really doesn’t. It’s really about what you’re fighting for. Tea partiers were trying to stop the federal government from reforming our health care system so that middle class workers will not go broke or die if they get sick. The Wisconsin protesters are trying to stop the Republican governor from making it illegal for them to belong to a union so that they can live a decent middle class life …

…. I’m sorry that people are misbehaving and failing to have the Oxford style debate that Stewart seems to think we should have … calls for “civility” are usually just a way to shut people up … this is why Colbert’s satire is so much more effective and, frankly, much braver. His satire is firmly aimed at the right, so he cannot take both sides. That’s why it works – it takes a position. By contrast, I’m increasingly not finding Jon’s church-lady finger wagging all that funny….

Read the full post here (also includes clips from the Daily Show)


I loved this post so much, I almost hugged my monitor :oops: – it summed up everything I feel about Stewart, the kid who reckons he’s cool because he sneers at anyone who shows some real passion about a cause. Of course I loved him when he targeted Bush, but that’s because I thought he actually stood for what is right. I get it now, he just sneers at everyone – it’s the cool thing to do.

Stewart would, most probably, sneer at this man’s passion too:

State Rep Gordon Hintz – from Crooks and Liars


‘you’ve heard the lies, now believe the facts’

Extracts from Gene Lyons’ Salon article: You’ve heard the lies, now believe the facts

Government spending is out of control under President Obama – the deficit has tripled

“Never happened. History records that President George W. Bush, who inherited a $236 billion government surplus from the Clinton administration in 2001, handed President Obama a stacked deck eight years later.”

“The Congressional Budget Office’s projected budget deficit for FY2009, beginning four months before Obama took office, was already in excess of $1.3 trillion. Indeed, the 2011 budget deficit is projected to be ever-so-slightly lower than the one Bush left on the White House doorstep. Despite the one-time $787 billion economic stimulus (spread over three years), no huge growth in government spending has taken place on Obama’s watch.”

“Three proximate causes of the rising national debt remain: the Bush tax cuts of 2001, his unfunded Medicare drug benefit, and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Alas, stating these historical facts has been declared out of bounds. It’s playing the “blame game,” a formulation greatly persuasive to Tea Partiers and conservative talk-show hosts basically because it rhymes.”

The Stimulus was a failure

“People have heard Republicans say “the failed stimulus” so often that many believe it. Again, according to the CBO, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan resulted in approximately 3 million jobs, the difference between a lingering recession and a full-blown depression, most economists would say.”

Obama has raised taxes

“Actually, he cut them. Almost one-third of the stimulus consisted of tax cuts, not spending. But because the money reached people in small increments through decreased withholding, most don’t know it.”

Obama bailed out Wall Street and the auto industry

Wrong. “The Bush administration enacted TARP in October 2008, although most Democrats (Obama included) voted for it. We’d all like to see more high-flying Wall Street fraudsters locked up, but TARP did succeed in saving the financial system while paying for itself.”

“Ditto the auto industry bailouts, an unfortunate necessity also first initiated by the Bush administration that’s basically worked. Do you really think Americans would be better off without General Motors?”


if you’re gonna be two-faced, at least make one of them pretty…..







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