Archive for March 29th, 2012

29
Mar
12

evening all

President Barack Obama is briefed by Denis McDonough, Deputy National Security Advisor, and others in the Oval Office, March 29, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

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Friday:

9:55 AM: PBO departs the White House en route Joint Base Andrews

11:35 AM: Arrives Burlington, Vt

2:35 PM: Delivers remarks at a campaign event

3:30 PM: Departs Burlington, Vt. en route Portland

4:20 PM: Arrives Portland

5:15 PM: Delivers remarks at a campaign event

7:20 PM: Delivers remarks at a campaign event

8:35 PM: Departs Portland, Maine, en route Joint Base Andrews

10:20 PM: Arrives at the White House

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Cagle

The Week

Cagle

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Link

Woot! Collegekay is still leading the fundraising challenge, if you can help: donate here

29
Mar
12

a word from japa21: channeling FDR

Channeling FDR

by Japa21

The last few days have been extremely emotional around here, specially with reaction to the reporting on the arguments before the Supreme Court about the Affordable Care Act. We have seen everything from outright panic to pleas for calm. From dire predictions of the entire law being tossed out to confident statements of all of it being upheld.

And it isn’t just that particular instance which seems from time to time to bring forth cries of doom and gloom to rampant jubilation. Every time new poll numbers come out there is a myriad of reactions. When numbers come out that show the President losing some of his advantages over Romney or (Heaven forbid) Santorum, there is the tendency to either, once again, panic or go into denial by blaming the methodology (not always incorrectly) to pleas to ignore the polling all together.

When positive news of the economy is cited, there are pleased smiles evident throughout the postings, but when some bad news occurs, the doom and gloom crowd comes out in force. There is a natural, based on history, concern about the negative approach the Republicans will take in the upcoming campaigns, as evidenced by the “America’s worst enemy” ad that Chips posted yesterday.

All of the negative reactions come under the heading, as Al Giordano called it in 2008, of “Chicken Littling.” There is a natural human tendency to focus on the worse things that can happen instead of working toward the best possible outcomes. And this is where it is important to remember the words of FDR:

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

One thing that FDR realized, and was warning against, is the debilitating impact of fear. It saps us of energy and optimism. At its worse, it brings forth despair and hopelessness. And where despair and hopelessness reign, apathy follows. There is a tendency to give up, to think that nothing we will do will matter, so why try at all. And that is exactly what the Republicans are hoping to happen.

Ever since Reagan, the Republican Party has used fear to push forth its agenda. Fear of blacks, fear of immigrants (legal and otherwise), fear of the “Evil Empire”, fear of Muslims, and fear of traitorous liberals. They have used this not only to create a motivation for their base, but to dispirit the left. And we have seen time and again how it works.

The miracle of the 2008 campaign is that then candidate Obama knew this and also realized that just focusing on issues would not be enough to counter this fear driven methodology. He knew that there had to be just as strong an emotional message sent out there to lessen the impact of fear. Hope was that message and the vibrant “Yes We Can” that underscored and strengthened that message of hope. He created the belief in the American people that we can conquer fear driven ideology, but only if we band together and not let our fears cause us to falter.

And that brings us to now. We have to believe, once again, that no matter what happens, we can move forward. That a setback here or there, be it in Republican obstructionism, or the ruling of the Supreme Court, or any negative poll or economic news, is merely that, a setback, not a defeat. Because if we view those things as defeats, fear seeps in. Fear that ultimately we will never succeed, fear that those who care only for the privileged few will always win. And with that fear comes the hopelessness and despair.

The message of hope given us in 2008 must never be abandoned because of a setback. Remember, hope and hopelessness cannot exist side by side. And fear feeds on the absence of hope. What we need to always consider when we face a setback is not the awful consequences of that setback but what we need to do to overcome that setback and have the confidence that we can and will overcome it.

I don’t know how the Supreme Court will vote on the ACA. Nor am I saying that an adverse ruling should just be shrugged off. But rather, if there is an adverse ruling we have a choice. Accept it as a crushing defeat or view it as a reason for us to continue to move forward to bring the change to this country that we all think is needed.

I know our President will look at it that way. And I know our President will always look at negative things as an opportunity to improve and work harder. If we have his back, how can we do anything less?

29
Mar
12

rooting again for collegekay

Link

Link

Saturday at midnight is the deadline for donations to the grassroots fundraising challenge, the winner of which gets a phone call from President Obama.

And holy smoley, look who’s still leading: our very own Collegekay …. but Marilyn is closing in.

The person with the most contributions from unique donors wins – so even if you could just donate a very small amount that would be completely great.

If Collegekay wins, I think she might just let us know about her call from the President 😉

29
Mar
12

afternoon all

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Steve Benen: President Obama spoke from the White House’s South Lawn this morning, urging Congress to end the $4 billion in tax subsidies oil and natural gas companies receive from the government every year. Obama noted that “Exxon pocketed nearly $4.7 million every hour” last year, and simply doesn’t need taxpayer subsidies on top of companies’ massive profits.

The president added “it’s like hitting the American people twice.”

Soon after, the Senate voted on the issue, and though a majority of members agreed with the president, a majority is no longer enough in the upper chamber.

More here

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Two Faces of Rage

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😆

More here

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Saturday: As part of her Joining Forces initiative to honor, recognize and serve military families, First Lady Michelle Obama will travel to Coast Guard Island in Alameda, California, to participate in the commissioning ceremony (10:00 AM PT) of the Coast Guard Cutter Stratton ….. Mrs. Obama, a sponsor of the Cutter Stratton, helped christen the ship in Pascagoula, Mississippi, in 2010 by breaking a champagne bottle over the bow ….  As the ship’s sponsor, the First Lady will ceremonially give the order to bring the ship to life, at which time the crew will board the Stratton with much fanfare.

The First Lady will travel to Los Angeles later on Saturday for Nickelodeon’s Kids’ Choice Awards where she will present The Big Help Award to Taylor Swift for her work with tornado and flood survivors.

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I’m dizzy after watching that 😕

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If anyone’s still having trouble commenting after the log-in changes made by WordPress, have a look at this link

29
Mar
12

rise and shine

Bloomberg: The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits dropped last week to the lowest level in almost four years, adding to evidence the U.S. labor market is strengthening.

Initial jobless claims fell 5,000 in the week ended March 24 to 359,000, the lowest since April 2008, the Labor Department reported today in Washington…..

Companies are retaining workers and hiring as sales improve along with confidence in the expansion. The pace of employment has gained momentum in the past three months, helping drive income growth that may ease the strain of higher gasoline prices.

…. The U.S. jobless rate could drop to as low as 6 percent by the first half of 2013, according to research from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

More here

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E.J. Dionne: Three days of Supreme Court arguments over the health-care law demonstrated for all to see that conservative justices are prepared to act as an alternative legislature, diving deeply into policy details as if they were members of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.

Senator, excuse me, Justice Samuel Alito quoted Congressional Budget Office figures on Tuesday to talk about the insurance costs of the young. On Wednesday, Chief Justice John Roberts sounded like the House whip in discussing whether parts of the law could stand if other parts fell. He noted that without various provisions, Congress “wouldn’t have been able to put together, cobble together, the votes to get it through.” Tell me again, was this a courtroom or a lobbyist’s office?

It fell to the court’s liberals — the so-called “judicial activists,” remember? — to remind their conservative brethren that legislative power is supposed to rest in our government’s elected branches.

More here

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Send the postcard – link

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CNN: President Barack Obama holds a double-digit lead over GOP presidential candidates Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum in hypothetical general election matchups, according to a new poll.

And a CNN/ORC International survey released Wednesday also indicates that the president’s approval rating has inched over the 50% mark in CNN surveys for the first time since last May, when the polls were still registering the after effects of the death of Osama bin Laden. The number of Americans who say the economy’s in good shape has jumped 13 points since January, though the survey shows a majority still think it is in poor shape.

If the general election were held today instead of in early November, 54% of registered voters say they would back Obama, with 43% supporting Mitt Romney … That’s up from a five-point 51%-46% advantage the president held over Romney in February.

And Obama would have a 55%-42% lead over Santorum …. the president led Santorum by a seven-point 52%-45% margin last month.

More here

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Mediaite: In recent weeks and months, there has been much made about the frequent “rich guy gaffes” that Mitt Romney has been making …. these gaffes seem to show the candidate can’t relate to the people he wants to lead …. Today he made yet another one. Perhaps Chris Matthews was right; this guy just isn’t “trainable”.

So, what did he do this time? Well, Romney called in to a “telephone town hall” in Wisconsin where he talked up his support of Gov. Scott Walker and Rep. Paul Ryan. All good, right? You’d think, but, at towards the beginning, Romney decided to tell a funny story about his history with the state of Wisconsin and … just see for yourself.

More here

ABC: …. Obama campaign spokeswoman Lis Smith said in a statement: ”The only things more out-of-touch than Mitt Romney’s ‘joke’ about his dad closing a factory are his policies that would give massive tax breaks to millionaires and billionaires and allow insurance companies to discriminate against individuals with pre-existing conditions. He continues to be callous about the struggles that ordinary Americas face and his policies would make it harder-not easier-for anyone but the very wealthy to succeed.”

More here

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Sun Times: The eagerly-anticipated “Biggest Loser” makeover episode is here, and this season, it’s bigger than ever. First Lady Michelle Obama guest stars in a two-part celebration that whisks the contestants away to the White House to reunite with their loved ones, and take part in the show’s first-ever White House workout. The episode will air as two, one-hour episodes on Tuesday, April 3 (8-9 p.m. ET) and Tuesday, April 10 (8-9 p.m. ET).

More here

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Morning everyone 😉




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