Posts Tagged ‘pete



23
Oct
13

The Genius That Is Pete Souza

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David Walker: Pete Souza On His Long-Term Photographic Partnership With President Barack Obama

PDN: You first met the President on his first day as senator in 2005. What was he like as a subject at that time?

Pete Souza: He had just been through a campaign in Illinois, and oftentimes had photographers tagging along with him. So I think he was used to a photographer being with him, maybe not to the extent that I wanted to try to work with him, which was to do a lot of things behind the scenes, but I think he appreciated the way I worked: leaving a small footprint, not interrupting what he was doing, and things like that.

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PDN: Can you talk about what you think about—and what you want to say about—the President when you photograph him, and how that has changed since you started as the chief White House photographer?

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 PS: I used to tell people that I’m trying to make photographs so that 50 years from now, people will have a sense of what Barack Obama was like as a president and as a person. [Then] I saw, somebody had archived a presentation about the work of Yoichi Okamoto, who was LBJ’s photographer, and he essentially said the same thing, except he didn’t say 50 years—he said 500 years. And that just sort of shook me a little bit in the sense of how important it was for me to do a good job documenting visually this administration, because the reality is that: It’s 500 years from now.

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People could be going through these photographs to try to get an idea [of this administration]. So that’s sort of the way I think about things.

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PDN: What images come to mind that stand out to you because of what you know about his manner or mannerisms?

PS: I think how he interacts with his girls, for instance. I’m sensitive to giving him the necessary privacy with his girls, but at the same time, they know who I am. I know the great relationship that he has with his girls, so I think I’m able to make some photographs that show him as a father that a stranger coming in would never be able to make … That’s one example.

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PDN: And anything about your relationship with the President you want to comment on? Does he comment on your photos, for example? Has he said anything to you or anything publicly [about your work]?

PS: Yeah, we hang photos on the walls of the West Wing. He’s usually struck by the photos that he’s not in, or photos that he’s in with his family, or photos that he’s in with little kids. I think those are the three categories of photographs that he enjoys the most.

More here

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18
Oct
13

President

@petesouza: Nice light in the Oval Office this am as Pres Obama works on correspondence at his desk

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And part of what he’s given to America:

ThisIsObamaCare.com

22
Sep
13

Rise and Shine: The Week in Images (And a Word or Two)

@petesouza: President Obama inside a Ford truck following his speech in KC

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Today:

5:0 EDT: President Obama delivers remarks at a memorial for victims of the Navy Yard shooting; First Lady Michelle Obama also attends

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Monday * Tuesday * Wednesday * Thursday * Friday * Saturday

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Monday

@PeteSouza: Lisa Monaco briefs Pres Obama on the shootings today at the Wash Navy Yard

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When will it be enough? – by Liberal Librarian

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President Obama receives an update on the Washington Navy Yard shootings investigation from FBI Director James Comey, left, and Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr. in the Oval Office (Pete Souza)

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Tuesday

by Jacqueline OBoomer

There sits a building, painted white
It glimmers in the bright sunlight
Built by strong, dark hands, without a choice
Built to house a leader, so we’d all have a voice

There sits a building, painted white
It shimmers in the soft twilight
Shadowing strong, dark hands taking their rest
Ghosts of our democracy, who gave it their best

There sits a building, painted white
It dims its lights, overnight
Built by slaves, who also served inside
Where none thought they should ever reside

There sits a building, painted white
We tip our hats to it, day and night
Built by slaves, who’d hang their heads to pray
A man with strong, dark hands would live there someday

There sits a building, painted white
I dare to say it is still quite the sight
For a still young country, yet to fully repent
But now shining light on why their knees were bent

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Wednesday

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More adventures in our failed media experiment: Part 1,382 – by Liberal Librarian

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Continue reading ‘Rise and Shine: The Week in Images (And a Word or Two)’

07
Sep
13

Rise and Shine

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The Week Ahead:

Saturday and Sunday: The President has no public events scheduled

Monday: Attends meetings at the White House

Tuesday: Addresses the nation from the White House

Wednesday: The President, the Vice President, the First Lady, Dr Jill Biden and White House staff will gather on the South Lawn of the White House to observe a moment of silence to mark the 12th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. The President will then travel to the Pentagon Memorial to attend the September 11th Observance Ceremony

Thursday: The President will hold a Cabinet Meeting. The Vice President will attend

Friday: Welcomes to the White House the Amir of Kuwait, His Highness Shaykh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al Sabah

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Steve Benen: Putting the goalposts firmly in place

…. If congressional Republicans ignore President Obama, it’s evidence of Obama failing. If congressional Republicans ignore their own party’s leaders, it’s still evidence of Obama failing.

If the president bypasses Congress to pursue his national security strategy, he’s dictatorial. If he seeks congressional authorization for his national security strategy, he’s weak and undermining the stature of his office.

If lawmakers reject a resolution authorizing force in Syria, Obama will struggle to get anything through Congress for the rest of his term. If lawmakers approve a resolution authorizing force in Syria, Obama will struggle to get anything through Congress for the rest of his term.

If the president uses the military to intervene in Syria, Obama will have undermined the credibility of the United States on the global stage. If the president honors a congressional vote against using the military to intervene in Syria, Obama will have undermined the credibility of the United States on the global stage.

I’m starting to think this game is rigged in a heads-I-win; tails-you-lose sort of way…..

Full post here

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The People’s View: When Democrats Were Humanitarian Hawks (#KosovoDems)

It passed the Senate by a 58-41 vote, and failed in the House in a 213-213 tie. 93% of Democrats in the Senate voted for it, as did 86% of House Democrats – that made for 42 Democratic senators and 180 Democratic House members. It was the Congressional resolution to allow the United States to intervene militarily, unilaterally if needed, to end a humanitarian catastrophe – under a Democratic president. It was the humanitarian catastrophe of death and displacements in Kosovo. President Clinton lead an airstrike despite the failure of the vote in Congress, under the NATO umbrella.

Kosovo’s civil war was a humanitarian disaster of epic proportions, but in the perspective of Syria, it is in danger of looking miniscule….

Yet, Congressional Democrats remain largely skeptical of an intervention in Syria while roughly 90% of Democrats in Congress in 1999 voted to allow Bill Clinton to intervene in Kosovo. I am left wondering why this is….

Full post here

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Smartypants: Rep. Keith Ellison asks us to listen to Syrian Americans

While an awful lot of liberals are jumping in front of TV cameras to announce their collaboration with tea party libertarians to oppose military intervention in Syria, one of the co-chairs of the Congressional Progressive Caucus (and one of only two members of the House who are Muslim) seems to be struggling a bit more deeply with the issues involved.

You can bet that with that kind of nuance, Rep. Ellison isn’t going to be asked to appear on any of the cable network shows.

But I’d ask you to do what the Congressman has requested: take a moment to read the letter to the anti-war movement from the group known as United for a Free Syria…..

Full post here

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It was hard to imagine Alan Grayson could sink any lower this week  – see ‘Alan Grayson Conspires with Far Right Lunatics to Lie and Fundraise off of Syria’ at The People’s View and ‘Rep Alan Grayson Cackles That Syrian Atrocities ‘Simply Not Our Problem’ at Mediaite) – but then there was this:

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Steve Benen: When crass fundraising takes a Grimm turn

Rep. Michael Grimm (R-N.Y.) announced just days ago that he would support President Obama’s call for military intervention in Syria. “We have to keep our word; this is about our credibility,” the New York Republican said last weekend. “We can’t permit a precedent where there is a use of chemical weapons and there is no response.”

Four days later, Grimm changed his mind, and announced yesterday he opposes the policy he’d previously endorsed.

I’ll leave it to others to speculate as to why, exactly, the congressman reversed course so quickly and completely …. The fundraising appeal, sent within a few hours of Grimm’s newly announced position, asks donors, “Will you stand with me in opposing President Obama’s plan with a donation of $25 or more right now?” It adds, “Stand with me today with a donation of $25 or more to strongly oppose military action in Syria.”

Full post here

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Smartypants: President Obama and WMD’s

The whole concept of reducing the threat of weapons of mass destruction was seriously discredited when Bush/Cheney used it as an excuse to lie us into an unnecessary war. Its clear by now that some people simply cannot have a rational conversation about the topic as a result.

But since President Obama has been trying to convince the US and the world to live up to their commitments about responding to the use of chemical weapons, I’ve been thinking about how that position is linked to a rather bold promise he made back when he was running for president in 2008….

More here

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The PCTC Blog: Pacifists and Liberals ; When Do We Actually Stand Up For Those We Allegedly Care About?

Being a pacifist isn’t easy. Not easy at all.

A lot of self-described pacifists think it is easy. Essentially, the equation for many is, if it maims or kills, you don’t do it. Period. That’s easy, isn’t it?

There’s just one problem. It’s not pacifism.

Like everything else in life, being pro-peace is complicated. It’s a constant calculation, based on the circumstances  in each situation. It’s not a blanket belief that no one should ever do anything violent, but a calculation of which actions will bring us closer to peace, and save the most innocent lives? Unfortunately, sometimes, the necessary action may be a violent one. Sometimes, in the grand peace calculation, there is little choice but to act violently. It’s a sad but true fact of life….

Full post here

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Oh boy, these people…..

TPM: Weekly GOP Address Makes No Mention Of Syria

As the country debates what it should engage in another military conflict, the Senate Republican weekly address Saturday made no mention of Syria.

Instead the address, delivered by Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY), was exclusively dedicated to attacking Obamacare ahead of the Oct. 1 initiation of enrollment in the law’s health insurance exchanges.

More here

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President Obama views the Gulf of Finland during a break before the first plenary session at the G20 Summit in St. Petersburg (Photo by Pete Souza)

More Pete Souza photos from the Summit here

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Paul Krugman: It Takes A Government (To Make A Market)

Lots of reporting on the new Kaiser Family Foundation analysis of what we know so far about premiums under Obamacare. It definitely looks as if there will be a mild “rate shock” — in the right direction….

What’s going on here? Partly it’s a vindication of the idea that you can make health insurance broadly affordable if you ban discrimination based on preexiting conditions while inducing healthy individuals to enter the risk pool through a combination of penalties and subsidies. But there’s an additional factor, that even supporters of the Affordable Care Act mostly missed: the extent to which, for the first time, the Act is creating a truly functioning market in nongroup insurance.

…. In an alternative universe, conservatives would be celebrating this good … But in this universe, conservatives claim that creating a real market for health insurance, and making sure that everyone can afford it, is the moral equivalent of slavery.

Full post here

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 OCare

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What Is Working: 40 Ways Obamacare is Working

The House of Representatives has voted  40 times to repeal Obamacare. To mark the occasion, here’s a quick rundown of 40 ways that Obamacare is already working for millions of Americans and will impact more beginning in 2014.

1. Say goodbye to lifetime limits: Insurance companies will no longer be able to place an arbitrary cap on coverage.

2. Children can no longer be denied health insurance because of a pre-existing condition.

3. Starting in 2014, adults will no longer be denied health insurance because of a pre-existing condition.

Free preventive care, including:

4. Annual check-ups

5. Contraception

6. Vaccinations

7. Gestational diabetes screenings

8. Mammograms….

More here

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ThinkProgress: North Carolina Hospital Will Shut Down In Six Months Because The State Won’t Expand Medicaid

On Wednesday, residents of Belhaven, North Carolina got a taste of how stubborn GOP opposition to the Affordable Care Act can affect them personally when executives at Vidant Health System unanimously voted to shut down the local Vidant Pungo Hospital within six months. Vidant officials said the move was necessary as a consequence of North Carolina’s refusal to participate in Obamacare’s optional Medicaid expansion.

Belhaven is a small town of 1,688 where more than 55 percent of the population is African-American and approximately 28 percent of residents live in poverty….

….. Obamacare reduced reimbursements to these so-called “disproportionate share hospitals” — one of which is Vidant Pungo — since the law originally intended all states to expand Medicaid for every American living up to 133 percent of the Federal Poverty Level. If things had unfolded that way, these hospitals wouldn’t need the additional government payments since their patients would finally be able to pay for their own care through Medicaid.

Full post here

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ThinkProgress: Washington State Is Getting Flooded With Hundreds Of Phone Calls About Signing Up For Obamacare

Obamacare’s state-level insurance marketplaces open for enrollment on October 1, and state officials are trying to get out the word about the new health care options that will be available soon. But many uninsured Americans still aren’t aware that they’ll be able to qualify for assistance to buy new plans under Obamacare, and lots of people in general remain confused about what the health law means for them. Health reform skeptics aren’t convinced that the marketplaces’ roll-out will be smooth enough to successfully reach all of those people.

If Washington State is any indication, however, some of those fears may be overblown. Washington hopes to target about one million uninsured residents with information about signing up for Obamacare. And it’s off to a relatively good start, as state officials there say that hundreds of people have contacted them this week asking for more details about the new Obamacare plans.

More here

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President Obama during a briefing in Sweden (Pete Souza)

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@petesouza: Instagram photo from Air Force One leaving Russia

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MooooOOOOoooorning – and the deepest of sympathies to our Australian TOD friends on Tony Abbott becoming their next PM :-(

06
Sep
13

Chat Away

President Obama boards Air Force One at Pulkovo International Airport in Saint Petersburg on September 6

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The President is scheduled to arrive at Andrews at 9:15 PM EDT

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Lots of great photos from this trip, but this one was hard to top:

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And the most beautiful?

@PeteSouza: Fireworks and laser lights frame the Grand Peterhof Palace last night at the G20 Summit in St Petersburg

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Chat away!

03
Sep
13

Tension in the White House

by Pete Souza

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Chat away!

31
Aug
13

Full Focus

President Obama meets in the Situation Room with his national security advisors to discuss strategy in Syria, Saturday, August 31 (Photo by Pete Souza)

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President Obama talks on the phone in the Oval Office with Speaker of the House Boehner, Saturday, August 31 (Pete Souza)

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Chat away.

29
Aug
13

Pete Souza Picture Time!

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President Barack Obama feels the hair of a youngster as he greets staff and their family members at the U.S. Embassy in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, July 2, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

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First Lady Michelle Obama greets children during a visit to Sterling Farms Grocery Store in Marrero, Louisiana, July 23, 2013. The store was opened last year by actor Wendell Pierce as part of the “Alliance For A Healthier Generation.” (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

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Vice President Joe Biden and Dr. Jill Biden lay a wreath with Tara Gandhi Bhattacharjee, granddaughter of Mahatma Gandhi, and Amb. Nancy Powell, left, at the Martyr’s Column at the Gandhi Smriti Museum in New Delhi, India, July 22, 2013. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)

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President Barack Obama talks with departing staff member Ruchi Bhowmik and her family in the Oval Office, July 12, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

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President Barack Obama listens to Vice President Joe Biden following a meeting with Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang and State Councilor Yang Jiechi on the margins of the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue, in the Oval Office, July 11, 2013. Standing with them from left are: U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke; Caroline Atkinson, Special Assistant to the President for International Economic Affairs; National Economic Council Director Gene Sperling; Deputy Secretary Bill Burns; National Security Advisor Susan Rice; Treasury Secretary Jack Lew; Danny Russel, Senior Director for Asian Affairs; and Evan Medeiros, Director for China, Taiwan, and Mongolia Affairs. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

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President Barack Obama visits with Make-A-Wish child Suhail Zaveri, 14, from Anaheim, Calif., in the Oval Office, July 16, 2013. Accompanying Suhail are his parents, Sandeep and Asmi Zaveri, and younger brother Arsh Zaveri. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

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President Barack Obama greets line workers at the Amazon fulfillment center in Chattanooga, Tennessee, July 30, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

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President Barack Obama presents Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., with a birthday cupcake aboard Air Force One, July 24, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

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President Barack Obama greets young reporters at the Kids’ State Dinner in the East Room of the White House, July 9, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

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More here

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05
Aug
13

Rise and Shine

Four years ago – Pete Souza: “I was sitting in the reception area outside the Oval Office when Sasha walked by and headed to the Oval. I suspected something was up, so I followed her. Sasha then crawled into the office, hiding behind the sofa, and when she reached the far end, jumped up and yelled trying spook her dad.” Aug. 5, 2009

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Today (all times Eastern):

12:45: Press Briefing by Jay Carney

6:0: The President meets with former Negro League baseball players

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The Week Ahead:

Tuesday: The President will travel to the Phoenix, Arizona area to continue talking with Americans about his better bargain for the middle class

That afternoon, the President will travel to Burbank, California, to tape an appearance on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno.

Wednesday: The President will travel to Camp Pendleton to visit with troops and their families

Thursday: The President will welcome Prime Minister Antonis Samaras of Greece to the White House

Friday: The President will attend meetings at the White House

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USA Today: President Obama has a string of meetings on his schedule Monday, one of them with a group of legends.

Early this evening, Obama meets with former Negro League baseball players at the White House.

The president will honor the players’ “contributions to our nation’s history, civil rights, and professional baseball,” says the White House schedule.

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WCHB: Minnie Forbes Owner of the 1956 Detroit Stars Honored by President Obama

The Michigan Chapter of Negro League Baseball Players celebrate one of their members, Minnie Forbes. She is the former owner of the 1956 Detroit Stars Baseball Team. Forbes is credited with being the third woman in the United States to own a team in the Negro Leagues. After 1958, Forbes went on to be the fourth woman to play baseball in the Negro Leagues. She was the third basemen for the Kansas City Monarchs.

Louis Manley, Jr is a well-known Detroit historian and the president of The Michigan Chapter of Negro League Baseball. He is excited to be recognized nationally as a leader in Negro League Baseball. As he prepares to meet and greet President Obama on Monday August 5, 2013 at 5:00 pm in the White House, he is delighted to accompany Minnie Forbes.

More here

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The Grio: Obama turns 52: 52 things that the president has accomplished so far

More here

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Dallas News: Obama order in wake of West blast a ‘game-changer’ in chemical safety, senator says

Barbara Boxer, chairwoman of the U.S. Senate’s environment and public works committee, sat visibly frustrated in a June congressional hearing. She finally told the Environmental Protection Agency official that “lives are being lost” while the agency failed to better safeguard the fertilizer chemical that blew up West.

Weeks later, Boxer wrote to the nation’s governors. She implored them to do what they could to improve the security of ammonium nitrate. Finally, the California Democrat turned to the White House. The results of her efforts became public last week when President Barack Obama issued an executive order directing the federal government to improve safety at chemical facilities.

“For me, it’s a game-changer,” Boxer said in an interview with The Dallas Morning News. “I saw the intransigence of some of the agencies. I saw them arguing and not committing. … We asked the president to help make sure this [type of disaster] never happens again.”….

More here

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@BarackObama

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Greg Sargent: Be very afraid of a government shutdown

Eric Cantor’s lengthy interview yesterday on Fox News Sunday is really worth reading in full and pondering at some length. It perfectly captures why it’s looking more and more likely that we are genuinely headed for a government shutdown this fall.

In the interview, Fox host Chris Wallace practically begs Cantor to have a reality-based conversation about the coming shutdown fight, the sequester, and Obamacare. Again and again, Cantor steers the conversation back into pure fantasy….

More here

And see Steve Benen: The wrong way to play the shutdown blame game

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Paul Krugman: Republicans Against Reality

Last week House Republicans voted for the 40th time to repeal Obamacare. Like the previous 39 votes, this action will have no effect whatsoever. But it was a stand-in for what Republicans really want to do: repeal reality, and the laws of arithmetic in particular. The sad truth is that the modern G.O.P. is lost in fantasy, unable to participate in actual governing.

Just to be clear, I’m not talking about policy substance. I may believe that Republicans have their priorities all wrong, but that’s not the issue here. Instead, I’m talking about their apparent inability to accept very basic reality constraints, like the fact that you can’t cut overall spending without cutting spending on particular programs, or the fact that voting to repeal legislation doesn’t change the law when the other party controls the Senate and the White House.

Am I exaggerating? Consider what went down in Congress last week….

More here

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Time: Obama’s Photographer Joins Instagram

On July 24, Pete Souza, Chief Official White House Photographer, joined Instagram. However, his first photo was not of the President, but the instantly-recognizable Presidential Seal, along with the caption: “My maiden voyage on Instagram. Will bring you behind-the-scenes of the Presidency.” His second picture? Presidential grapes.

Since then, @petesouza has documented the inner workings of the White House and it’s staff, from Marine One’s shadow to the Presidential dog – Bo. Souza talked with TIME’s international picture editor, Patrick Witty, about Instagram and what we can expect to see on his feed (more Bo) and what we won’t see (selfies).

What made you take the plunge and open an Instagram account?

The digital folks here at the White House have been asking me to do this for some time and I thought the time was right to finally take the plunge.

More here

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Welcome to Twitter:

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But, truly, Twitter is a cesspit:

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Steve Benen: ‘It’s a critical first step’

In recent weeks, progressive activists in Florida have pushed a very specific message: in the wake of the George Zimmerman trial, state policymakers need to revisit the controversial “Stand Your Ground” law. Their task hasn’t been easy — Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) has refused to consider changes to the status quo.

Late last week, however, there was an unexpected breakthrough….

More here

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MooooOOOOoooorning everyone! I’m half way through my break but reckoned after all her stupendous posting UT deserved a Monday morning lie-in – endless thank yous to her for the brilliant posting the past week, she’s like Wayne Rooney and Cheesy Puffs rolled in to one.

Hope everyone’s doing great?

22
Jul
13

Pictures Perfect

President Obama and British PM Cameron visit Enniskillen Primary School in Northern Ireland, June 17

…. talking with housekeeping staff outside of a lodge at the Lough Erne Resort during the G8 Summit in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland, June 17

….. holding six-month-old Talia Neufeld, daughter of departing staff member Adam Neufeld, in the Oval Office, June 14

@DCPlod: Wait, how the hell did Obama get the Royal Baby before it’s been born?

:lol:

…… on Gorée Island, Senegal, June 27

….. looking out the “Door of No Return” during a tour of the Maison des Esclaves Museum on Gorée Island, Senegal, June 27

Continue reading ‘Pictures Perfect’

05
Jul
13

This land….




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