Archive for July 7th, 2011

07
Jul
11

curious….

There’s so much more, but just a line or two on the Professional Left’s heroes:

Glenn Greenwald (founding member of the ‘OMG! Obama is a Torturer!’ fan club): A Libertarian, a supporter of GOP/Libertarian 2012 candidate Gary Johnson (who wants to end child labor laws and reckons President Obama’s election signaled the end of racism in America), also a paid Cato Institute contributor, his checks quite possibly signed by Cato’s co-founder Charles Koch.

Jane Hamsher (Queen of the Firebaggers): Her CommonSense Media company works with Republicans in their efforts to defeat Democrats, and did online advertising for BP in the aftermath the Gulf oil disaster.

Arianna Huffington (Tiresome twat): Where do you start? A hardcore supporter of conservative causes such as Newt Gingrich’s ‘Republican Revolution’ and Bob Dole’s 1996 candidacy for president.

Ed Shultz (Good grief): A former Republican, he admitted to being “far right” until the late 1990s, the ‘homeless’ often the target of his right-wing rage.

John Aravosis (King of Hysteria): A leading gay rights campaigner and scathing critic of President Obama’s record on gay rights, Aravosis worked as a foreign policy adviser for corrupt Alaskan Republican senator Ted Stevens (who voted for a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and against a bill adding sexual orientation to the definition of hate crimes).

Cenk Uygur (Yawn): A former Republican, and self-confessed Reagan fan, he admitted to voting for the first George Bush and …. Bob Dole. “I was so conservative judicially I went to Federalist Society meetings.” He dismissed President Obama’s Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which guaranteed equal pay for women, as “a minor bill”.

Markos Moulitsas (DK mogul!): A former member of the Republican Party. During the 1988 presidential election, he served as a Republican precinct captain and assisted with the re-election campaign of Illinois Congressman Henry Hyde – the same Henry Hyde who, as a member of the congressional panel investigating the Iran-Contra affair, vigorously defended the Reagan administration, and a number of the participants who had been accused of various crimes, particularly Oliver North.

****

Hmm….. lots of people start out in life with right wing views and have the good sense to become liberals. It’s just curious how many of the professional left’s Gods have similar political backgrounds.

07
Jul
11

‘a non-hysterical progressive analysis of so called social security cuts’

HamdenRice (Daily Kos): …. a lot of DKers have a lot invested in certain views about economics and finance that are not really open to empirical (ie factual) analysis, but instead are based on political commitments and emotion….

But today’s hysteria over the “cuts” to Social Security on the proverbial political table and the even wilder assertion that the Obama administration is committing political suicide by discussing them, let along enacting them, has persuaded me to provide a dollars and sense (as well as economic theory) explanation of what’s going on.

If you don’t like economics, public finance or numbers, then let me not bury the lede and explain exactly what’s on the table.

If enacted, the average social security recipient would get 14 cents less of an increase per month, but only in a month in which the social security benefit actually went up by about $34  ….. so yes, it does look like 11 dimension chess (offering the Republicans nothing of substance).

The so called “cuts” being discussed are not cuts in actual benefits, but cuts in how increases are to be measured based on the consumer price index.

…. At minimum, the diary moves the discussion to a discussion of the effect of inflation on SSI, the importance of purchasing power parity, and actual numbers from “zoh my god!!! Teh evul Obama wants to kill social security, destroy the Democratic party and force grandma to eat cat food!!! They’re spitting on Ted Kennedy’s grave!!!”

I also think its interesting – and useful – that some people tried to fact check this, but I have to note that I’ve rarely seen those same emo progressives fact check certain diaries that, for example, describe collateralized debt obligations as mortgages that have been sliced and diced and “sprinkled with fairy dust.”  My question would be what kind of fairy dust?  How much in percentage terms? Was it sprinkled or sprayed?

Full post here

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Generally, I’d be quicker to link to a ‘Bachmann Is A Goddess’ site than to DK, but Suzanne and Dorothy let me know about this post and it’s just too good to ignore. How completely refreshing to read the views of someone who actually knows what they’re talking about.

Charles Koch/Cato Institute’s Glenn Greenwald tried to write about ‘Obama’s Betrayal!’ today, and all his effort proved is that he knows even less about the debt ceiling issue than me …. the poor guy just embarrassed himself. He really should stick to his ‘OMG! Obama Continues To Torture Manning!’ scribbles.

07
Jul
11

non-news

Didn’t hear much about this news today, did you?

CNN Money: The job market got two optimistic signs Thursday as private sector employers added 157,000 positions in June and fewer people filed new claims for unemployment benefits, according to two reports.

Payroll processing company ADP said private jobs grew rapidly in June – a figure that was much higher than expected and more than four times higher than the prior month …  Economists were expecting a gain of just 60,000 private sector jobs…

….ADP’s chief executive, Gary Butler, said that June’s data “are a significant improvement,” especially given last quarter’s 1.9% GDP growth.

“Given such strong employment results despite poor GDP, I am optimistic we will see improving job growth in the second half of the year,” Butler said.

…. In a separate report Thursday, the Labor Department said the number of first-time filers for unemployment insurance fell by 14,000 to 418,000 last week. Economists expected 425,000 initial claims.

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Reuters: U.S. private employers added far more jobs than expected in June, bouncing back from a surprise slump the month before, a report by payrolls processor ADP showed on Thursday.

The private sector added 157,000 jobs last month, exceeding expectations for a gain of 68,000, according to a Reuters survey of economists.

…. U.S. stock index futures added to gains following the report, while the dollar gained more ground against the yen.

Friday’s jobs report is expected to show a modest rise in overall nonfarm payrolls of 90,000 for last month and a gain in private payrolls of 110,000….

On Wednesday, a stable employment reading from the Institute for Supply Management’s service sector survey suggested employment growth later in the year…..

07
Jul
11

reflecting

President Barack Obama talks with members of his staff in the Oval Office following a meeting with the Congressional Leadership, July 7, 2011. Pictured with the President, from left, are: Chief of Staff Bill Daley; Rob Nabors, Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs; Bruce Reed, Chief of Staff to the Vice President; National Economic Council Director Gene Sperling; Jason Furman, Principal Deputy Director of the National Economic Council; Office of Management and Budget Director Jack Lew; Senior Advisor David Plouffe; and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

I much prefer Bobfr’s caption:

“Gentlemen, yes I know, they’re dumber than rocks but they are Americans, too, so as we vaporize their deficit bulls*^t with Section 4 of the 14th Amendment and display for the American people just how lame, cruel and mind bogglingly dumb their little brinksmanship stunt is, be generous of spirit as we drape their Republican coffin with Old Glory, and bury their stain on 6 Nov 2012. Thank you and have a good day.”

😆

07
Jul
11

‘stop searching for an obama doctrine’

Fareed Zakaria (Washington Post): …Obama has a worldview, a well-considered approach to international affairs. His views have been straightforward and consistent. From the earliest days of his presidential campaign he said that he sees the basic argument in American foreign policy as “between ideology and realism” and placed himself squarely on one side….

….beneath the rhetoric you can see a pragmatism at work again. After being caught unawares by events in Tunisia and Egypt – as was most everyone, including the leaders of those countries – the Obama administration saw that the protests in Egypt were going to succeed and acquiesced in the inevitable. It took Ronald Reagan two years to turn on Ferdinand Marcos. It took Obama two weeks to urge Hosni Mubarak to resign.

The fashionable criticism is that Obama does not have a consistent policy toward the Arab Spring. But should he? There are vast differences between the circumstances in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Syria and Saudi Arabia; American interests in those countries; and our capacity to influence events there…..

In Libya, the administration confronted a potential humanitarian crisis in which Moammar Gaddafi’s domestic opposition, the Arab League, the United Nations and key European allies all urged international action. It found a way to participate in a multilateral intervention but has been disciplined about keeping its involvement limited…..

In all these cases, what marks administration policy is a careful calculation of costs and benefits. The great temptation of modern American foreign policy, from Versailles to Vietnam to Iraq, has been to make grand declarations – enunciate doctrines – that then produce huge commitments and costs. We are coming off a decade of such rhetoric and interventions and are still paying the price: more than $2 trillion, not to mention the massive cost in human lives. In that context, a foreign policy that emphasizes strategic restraint is appropriate and wise.

Full article here

07
Jul
11

press briefing

07
Jul
11

“the poor need to share some of the responsibility”

The Hill: Democrats seized Thursday on remarks by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) in which he appeared to suggest the poor should have a greater responsibility to contribute to government coffers.

Hatch, during a speech Wednesday on the Senate floor, seemed to say that the poor could do more to address the deficit.

….The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) pounced on Hatch, who faces a potentially difficult reelection next fall, as well as a possibly difficult primary challenge.

“Republican priorities are completely out of whack, and Orrin Hatch’s comments prove that point,” DSCC spokesman Shripal Shah said. “It’s bad enough that Republicans are doing everything they can to protect tax breaks for millionaires and special interests, but the fact that the Republican idea of shared sacrifice means going after the those who are struggling the most is completely reprehensible.”

DSCC

07
Jul
11

“i don’t understand why this guy thinks he can run for president”

Iowa Democratic Party

07
Jul
11

update

President Barack Obama, followed by Press Secretary Jay Carney, arrives to talk about the ongoing budget negotiations in the briefing room at the White House

07
Jul
11

‘dual loyalty’

Thank you JER – and thanks for the C-Span links to the Center for American Progress/’Rebuild the Dream’ discussions here and here




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