News Of The Day


Kate Sheppard: Obama Issues Order To Prevent The Next West, Texas-Style Explosion

On Thursday, President Obama issued an executive order on chemical facility safety, three and a half months after the deadly ammonium nitrate explosion in a West, Texas fertilizer plant. The order outlines a number of new initiatives intended to modernize oversight of plants and strengthen the coordination of the various agencies responsible for safety at these facilities.

To take up those mandates, the order establishes a new Chemical Facility Safety and Security Working Group, which will include the top officials from the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Labor, and the Department of Homeland Security. It also directs federal, state, local, and tribal groups to figure out how to work together better on this issue.

More here



 Clare Kim: Meet The Academy of Motion Picture’s First African-American President

Cheryl Boone Isaacs has been elected president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, becoming the first African-American and third woman to lead the organization that awards the Oscars every year.

Boone Isaacs, a marketing executive who currently heads CBI Enterprises, was voted in by the board of governors Tuesday night. She has consulted on films like The ArtistThe King’s Speech and Precious. She has also served as executive vice president of worldwide publicity at Paramount Pictures and as president of theatrical marketing for New Line Cinema. Earlier this year, she produced the 4th annual Governors Awards for the Academy.

More here



President Obama’s America


Michael O’Brien: Obama Nominates Permanent IRS Commissioner

President Barack Obama named a new, full-time commissioner of the IRS on Thursday, giving the besieged agency a permanent leader.

Obama nominated John Koskinen, a veteran of government service who helped oversee the restructuring of mortgage giant Freddie Mac in the aftermath of the 2008-09 recession, to lead the IRS.

“John is an expert at turning around institutions in need of reform,” Obama said in a statement. “With decades of experience, in both the private and public sectors, John knows how to lead in difficult times, whether that means ensuring new management or implementing new checks and balances.”

More here




Joseph Diebold: Texas Republicans Want Wendy Davis To Pay For Special Session

After spending their first special session watching State Sen Wendy Davis’ (D) marathon filibuster and their second passing the abortion restrictions Davis was fighting against, the Texas legislature is back for a third session. Now, they need to handle the transportation measure that was the motivation for the original special session, before they got sidetracked with anti-abortion legislation.

Unfortunately for the state’s taxpayers, the extra time will cost them an additional $2.4 million. But one lawmaker has an idea for who should foot part of that bill: Davis herself. State Rep. Giovanni Capriglione told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram he thinks Davis should be on the hook for the cost of the extra lawmaking sessions.

Davis shrugged off the criticism, noting that Republican Gov. Rick Perry is the one who decides to add special sessions. “It’s unfortunate that the leadership in power squandered taxpayer dollars pursuing partisan politics before Texas priorities and forced an unnecessary special session,” she said.

More here


108 Responses to “News Of The Day”

  1. 1 vitaminlover
    August 1, 2013 at 6:05 pm

    My two fellas!

  2. 7 vcprezofan2
    August 1, 2013 at 6:07 pm

    What’s the difference between an instagram and Pete’s previous pics? I mean, why did/does he need to join in with instagram. I don’t get it.

    • 8 hopefruit2
      August 1, 2013 at 6:10 pm

      Good question VC. 🙂 I don’t see the difference really. Maybe I’m missing something. I guess Instagram is becoming a popular thing to do…like FB and/or Twitter, etc.

    • August 1, 2013 at 6:11 pm

      Instagram is a totally different deal. It’s a smartphone app instead of output from a digital camera. It’s supposed to make uploading photos to twitter a breeze. Although Pete Souza obviously has it down and takes great photos in any medium, I personally think it’s sub-par and would rather work with real digital photo jpgs. I guess I have to keep trying!

      • 10 hopefruit2
        August 1, 2013 at 6:15 pm

        Thanks for the info meta! I WAS missing something. Makes a whole lotta sense now. LOL!

      • 11 vcprezofan2
        August 1, 2013 at 6:32 pm

        TY, Meta. I notice whenever I more or less grasp some bit of technology (like being able to upload pics to twitter now), “they” bring in something else. It’s meant to confuse me I know, but my MO /said with pride/ is to ignore them.

        • August 1, 2013 at 6:47 pm

          I love technology but it’s becoming increasingly harder to keep up – it’s like a full-time job just trying to sort it out. All you can do really is skim for the bigger picture and then sort out the details if it seems like something you might need to know!!

  3. August 1, 2013 at 6:10 pm

    PBO and VPB look good together

    • 14 hopefruit2
      August 1, 2013 at 6:12 pm

      There’s no other team quite like these two. It will be a while before we see another such.

    • August 1, 2013 at 6:12 pm

      I absolutely LOVE seeing photos of the two of them together. They have a certain magic!!

      • 16 hopefruit2
        August 1, 2013 at 6:24 pm

        They have an unbreakable bond of not just political alliance, but personal friendship and mutual respect. Their spouses too. 🙂 I feel very secure with this team.

  4. 17 utaustinliberal
    August 1, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    • 18 forus50
      August 1, 2013 at 7:43 pm

      Hi UT, I see you are keeping up every day. Between a hectic work schedule and getting shingles (aghhhh) I have been lurking but not typing! 🙂

      So I decided to take your advice and explore (which I often do as a director at work to see if things are working as they are supposed to be) and unfortunately I found that the site is pretty close to useless. Sec. Sebelius needs to have her staff get this to be useful. I entered different states (Illinois, California, Maryland and Oregon) and different number of employees and got a boilerplate answer on everything that was not helpful. I thought since it asks what state you are in as the first question it would at least provide state specific info. If it was my company I would take it down until there is state specific info on it. I think right now it will piss people off rather than have them say “Oh, now I know what to do!”.

      Not to just complain I did send this tweet. Hopefully they will get it up to par soon like everything else POTUS does.

      • 19 utaustinliberal
        August 1, 2013 at 7:53 pm

        Good catch. It would be wise to send them an email so they can get up to speed. You can go to healthcare.gov or send them an email from the business healthcare website if there is a contact us page.

        That seems to be a more relevant option than Twitter. You should do that so it will help them.

  5. 21 desertflower
    August 1, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    A little more background on Rick Perry’s stupidity and incompetence


    Just over an hour after Texas legislators concluded their second special session — an extra lawmaking session they used to enact sweeping abortion restrictions — Gov. Rick Perry (R) called them back for a third one. An outstanding highway funding bill is the only item on the agenda. “When it comes to transportation, the stakes facing our state could not be higher,” the governor noted in a statement.
    Perry cited that same transportation measure as one of the reasons he believed it was necessary to call the first special legislative session at the beginning of June. But instead of focusing on getting that done, the governor demonstrated a different set of priorities — adding a slew of anti-abortion provisions that were unable to advance during the state’s regular session to the docket.

    That dogged focus on restricting reproductive rights means the Texas legislature must return for another month-long session to get back to that unfinished transportation initiative. Elected officials will continue to work until the end of August, despite the fact that the regular lawmaking session ended back in the middle of May. “This third special session is an expression of failed leadership,” Davis tweeted on Tuesday.
    Although Perry has indicated he would prefer to stick to the highway funding bill, that doesn’t guarantee lawmakers will stop filing abortion-related bills in the third special session. On the final day of the second session, state Sen. Eddie Lucio (D) — the only Senate Democrat who supported the recently approved omnibus anti-abortion bill — filed a measure to require women to complete a mandatory adoption certification course before they may seek an abortion. Lucio has suggested he will attempt to keep pushing that measure during the third session.

  6. 22 desertflower
    August 1, 2013 at 6:19 pm

    Anyone see Tally lately? She must be very busy!

    • 23 hopefruit2
      August 1, 2013 at 6:22 pm

      I’ve seen her on Twitter sporadically. She dropped by briefly TOD sometime last week I believe. Must be busy as you say 🙂

      • 24 desertflower
        August 1, 2013 at 6:36 pm

        thanks, hopefruit:) Just curious that I hadn’t see her lately…I’m sure she’s busy:)

    • 25 vcprezofan2
      August 1, 2013 at 6:44 pm

      You’re right, Df, I haven’t seen her in a while.

      Thanks for your response Hf. Hope she’s just busy as you both suggest, or on vacation. She’ll probably be back for football season which LL assured us starts soon (Aug. 18, I believe he said).

  7. 28 Linda
    August 1, 2013 at 6:20 pm

    Texas Republicans Want Wendy Davis To Pay For Special Session

    “I am upset at the cost,” Capriglione said. “I think we need to remember why we are having this extra special session. One state senator, in an effort to capture national attention, forced this special session. I firmly believe that Sen. Wendy Davis should reimburse the taxpayers for the entire cost of the second special session. I am sure that she has raised enough money at her Washington, D.C., fundraiser to cover the cost.”


    • 29 Nena20409
      August 1, 2013 at 6:27 pm

      Totally outrageous……Is Filibuster not part of the legislative scheme enshrined in the rules?

      Should Perry and the TBGOPers pay for special sessions when they used it to manipulate to get a bill through that they failed to do during regular orders? Totally outrageous.

  8. August 1, 2013 at 6:36 pm

    So, I’m meeting I’m meeting my blogfather Spandan of TPV for dinner tonight, along with ex-TODer / current TPVer Keith. Taking them to my favorite steakhouse for some good meat and equally good martinis.

  9. August 1, 2013 at 6:41 pm

    Sen. Cornyn asked unanimous consent that the Senate pass HR 2009 to prohibit enforcement of ACA.
    Sen. Reid objected.
    OMG, these people are INSANE.

  10. 43 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    August 1, 2013 at 6:43 pm

    Good evening, TOD; been a rough week. Three neighbors died on Monday. All were seniors and had been ill, however, doesn’t make it any easier. Will miss all three ladies.

    • 44 vcprezofan2
      August 1, 2013 at 6:47 pm


    • August 1, 2013 at 6:50 pm

      So sorry, Alycee. What a strange and painful blow to happen all at once.

      • 46 daisydem
        August 1, 2013 at 7:06 pm

        So sorry Alycee; I live in an older neighborhood and have or had 3 older senior widows, one of who I have been very close to for many, many years and ironically, (one has passed and her grandson has moved into her beautiful, well kept house and we are so glad) and just last Sunday I sat and looked out my front window at the three houses and thought about each of them, each of the unique and special in their own way.

    • 47 desertflower
      August 1, 2013 at 7:03 pm

      {{{{Alycee}}}}} One is awful, 3 is devastating. So sorry to hear this news.

  11. 48 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    August 1, 2013 at 6:43 pm

  12. 49 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    August 1, 2013 at 6:44 pm

  13. August 1, 2013 at 6:52 pm

  14. August 1, 2013 at 6:57 pm

    I realize this is not quite on topic, but it is an amazing article defending public education. If any of you are concerned about public education in your state or area, this is a great article that clearly dismantles the common talking points again public schools that you will here. It really brought tears to my eyes. I’m grateful to read such an article by a person who understands and supports the job that public education does.

  15. 54 hopefruit2
    August 1, 2013 at 6:57 pm

    I love my President.

  16. August 1, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    ALERT. You probably saw the info about embassies closing this Sunday. Here’s some info.

  17. 68 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    August 1, 2013 at 7:05 pm

  18. August 1, 2013 at 7:05 pm

    PBO nominated a BUNCH of women today for key positions in his administration.


  19. August 1, 2013 at 7:08 pm


  20. August 1, 2013 at 7:24 pm

  21. 83 hopefruit2
    August 1, 2013 at 7:26 pm

  22. August 1, 2013 at 7:33 pm

  23. August 1, 2013 at 7:36 pm

  24. August 1, 2013 at 7:42 pm

  25. 91 Bill R.
    August 1, 2013 at 8:11 pm

  26. 92 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    August 1, 2013 at 8:17 pm

  27. August 1, 2013 at 8:36 pm

  28. August 1, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    • 98 anniebella
      August 1, 2013 at 8:48 pm

      This why Edward Snowden will never be consider a hero to me. How the hell does he go running to a country who I am sure spies on it’s people, who any enemy of Putin is arrested or might disappear for good. Snowden is a traitor.

  29. August 1, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    My vacay contribution. 😆

    > THE
    > On the first day, he sadly packed
    > his belongings into
    > boxes, crates and suitcases.
    > On the second day,
    > he had the movers come and collect his things.
    > On
    > the third day, he sat down for the last time at their
    > beautiful dining-room
    > table,by candle-light; he
    > put on some soft background music, and feasted on a pound of
    > shrimp,a jar of
    > caviar, and a bottle of spring-water.
    > When
    > he’d finished, he went into each and every room and
    > deposited a few half-eaten shrimps
    > dipped in caviar into the hollow center of the curtain
    > rods.
    > He
    > then cleaned up the kitchen and left.
    > On
    > the fourth day, the wife came back with her new boyfriend,
    > and at first all was
    > bliss.
    > Then, slowly, the house began to smell.
    > They
    > tried everything; cleaning, mopping, and airing-out the
    > place.
    > Vents were
    > checked for dead rodents, and carpets were steam
    > cleaned.
    > Air
    > fresheners were hung everywhere. Exterminators were brought
    > in to set off gas
    > canisters, during which time the two had to move out for a
    > few days, and in the
    > end they even paid to replace the expensive wool carpeting..
    > Nothing worked!
    > People stopped coming over to visit.
    > Repairmen refused to work in the
    > house. The maid quit.
    > Finally, they
    > couldn’t take the stench any longer, and decided they
    > had to move, but a month
    > later – even though they’d cut their price in half –
    > they couldn’t find a buyer
    > for such a stinky house.
    > Word
    > got out, and eventually even the local realtors refused to
    > return their
    > calls.
    > Finally, unable
    > to wait any longer for a purchaser, they had to borrow a
    > huge sum of money from
    > the bank to purchase a new place.
    > Then
    > the ex called the woman and asked how things were going..
    > She told him the saga
    > of the rotting house. He listened politely and said that he
    > missed his old home
    > terribly and would be willing to reduce his divorce
    > settlement in exchange for
    > having the house.
    > Knowing
    > he could have no idea how bad the smell really was, she
    > agreed on a price that
    > was only 1/10th of what the house had been worth … but
    > only if he would sign
    > the papers that very day.
    > He
    > agreed, and within two hours her lawyers delivered the
    > completed
    > paperwork.
    > A week
    > later the woman and her boyfriend stood smiling as they
    > watched the moving
    > company pack everything to take to their new home
    > ……
    > and to
    > spite the ex-husband, they even took the curtain
    > rods!
    > I LOVE
    > YOU?

  30. 106 desertflower
    August 1, 2013 at 8:59 pm


    At this point, Republicans won’t even support their own ideas. For years, the party has complained that corporate tax rates are so high that they discourage job creation. So what was the reaction when Obama proposed lowering those corporate tax rates? House leaders immediately signaled that they were not interested.

    Boehner does seem to be standing firm, at least for now, against the idea of a government shutdown over Obamacare. He has a powerful self-interest in the matter: While Democrats face an uphill struggle to reclaim control of the House in next year’s election, the task becomes easier if voters are angry with Republicans for cutting off government services.

    If we get past the shutdown threat, the next opportunity for mayhem will be a GOP threat — yet again — to grievously wound the economy by refusing to raise the statutory debt ceiling. Maybe we’ll make it past this crisis, too. But chances that Republicans will actually let Congress do anything constructive seem dimmer than ever.

    Obama can use his executive powers, but those only go so far. Next year voters will have to decide whether elected officials who do not believe in government should perhaps find another line of work.

    We should MAKE them find another line of work! It would be the first ACTUAL WORK they would have done IN YEARS!

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