A red ribbon is hung from the North Portico of the White House, Nov. 30, to mark World AIDS Day on Dec. 1. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)
Michael Grunwald (Time): It’s really amazing to see political reporters dutifully passing along Republican complaints that President Obama’s opening offer in the fiscal cliff talks is just a recycled version of his old plan, when those same reporters spent the last year dutifully passing along Republican complaints that Obama had no plan….
This isn’t just cognitive dissonance. It’s irresponsible reporting. Mainstream media outlets don’t want to look partisan, so they ignore the BS hidden in plain sight, the hypocrisy and dishonesty that defines the modern Republican Party…..
…. we’re not supposed to be stenographers. As long as the media let an entire political party invent a new reality every day, it will keep on doing it. Every day.
David Firestone (NYT): Republicans reportedly laughed when they saw the Obama administration’s initial offer in the fiscal negotiations yesterday. The idea that President Obama might actually want to enact his campaign promises – tax hikes on the rich, modest Medicare cuts, investments in infrastructure – is apparently considered a joke to the party that has shown virtually no flexibility in the last four years.
But some of that laughter may contain nervousness, because there is more going on here than just a pathway to splitting the difference. The White House made clear yesterday that it is approaching these talks from a position of responsibility, and that it actually takes seriously the notion of old-fashioned bargaining. That’s something Republicans have refused to do — and now they realize they’ve been called out.
Deaniac (The People’s View): The president is in a fighting mood. Starting today, he’s barnstorming the country, getting the American people to pressure Congress to extend the middle class tax breaks, and to do so now. Yesterday, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner presented the leaders of Congress with the Administration’s opening offer. That offer is heavy on revenue, tax fairness, and Medicare savings without affecting benefits. Here’s a short summary of what the president has proposed, from leaked details.
Liberal Librarian (The People’s View): Yesterday’s vote in the UN on Palestine has stirred a lot of emotions on the left; I’ve taken the time to read the responses across a few blogs this morning, and for the most part they’ve been considered and judicious. So here are my two pfennigs.
When the world’s three most powerful faiths declare a piece of real estate “holy”, that causes problems of a sort not found anywhere else. To the Jews, it is the “Promised Land”, vouchsafed to them by God unto the last generation. To Muslims, it’s holy because God walked in it with the Hebrew patriarchs, whom they consider earlier prophets; and, of course, they believe Muhammad made his Night Journey to heaven from the Temple Mount. To Christians, obviously, it was the land where Jesus lived, preached, and died. The deep emotional and religious attachments are not to be disregarded.
Kevin Drum (Mother Jones): There’s one particular strain of Republican reaction to their election loss that’s always given me the biggest chuckle, and today Paul Waldman highlights it: the absurd proposition that Mitt Romney never forthrightly defended conservative principles….
…. For months, conservatives yelled from the rooftops about how 2012 presented the sharpest choice ever in governing philosophies …. [they] claimed that this one was truly an ideological turning point, America’s last chance to choose what kind of country we should be. But literally within hours of defeat, they turned on a dime and insisted that the American people weren’t given a real chance to decide between two competing visions. And they’ve maintained this claim despite losing the popular vote in the House, the Senate, and the presidency, and despite the fact that demographic trends very clearly spell even further trouble in the future for their hardnosed brand of social intolerance and slavish dedication to the interests of the rich.
Cognidissidence: The right wing propaganda site Politico was so eager to try to do a smear job on President Barack Obama and his visit to Milwaukee that they failed to look before they leaped and ended up landing into a pile of foolishness with both feet.
Yup, they mistook the Wisconsin state flag as being the flag of Wisconsin Local 1848.
Once they realized how stupid they looked, they deleted the post …. but thanks to the power of Google Cache, you can see it for yourself.
Donovan Slack is the ‘reporter’ who had the story on Politico about Michelle Obama buying $50,000 worth of lingerie …. but never followed it up with the admission from the English paper, that first reported it, that it was untrue.
Too many blissful moments to choose from today, but go on then …. I’ll pick these three minutes … just listen to the crowd from 0:18 and watch the President and First Lady’s reaction:
And these five photos….
1 Because the President visiting Ireland meant so, so much to Dan Rooney – just look at his face at Dublin airport this morning, and the way he’s holding the President’s hands:
2 Because the sight of President Obama with a hurley in his hands just cracked me up …. especially when he threatened to use it against Congress:
3 Because the Obamas’ visit to Moneygall gave the village’s people a day they will never, ever forget:
4 Because this photo just showed how fun and utterly lovely the first couple are:
5 Because, for me, this photo is iconic. The sight of President Obama pointing towards the skies, in the general direction of the Irish flag, will hardly make Ireland’s economic disaster go away …. but his speech today made more than a few Irish folk believe that Ireland can come back again: Is Féidir Linn … Yes We Can.
Can I have a sixth? Please? Thanks!
Because they said President Obama couldn’t possibly attract as big a crowd in Dublin as Bill Clinton did 15 years ago.
Thank you for your company on a beautiful day – I won’t be able to post as frequently tomorrow, but I’ll do my best😉
BBC: The forthcoming visit to Ireland by American President Barack Obama has transformed the appearance of a small Irish village. Moneygall in County Offaly is awash with paint, as the rural village prepares to welcome the most powerful man in the world in May.
…To ensure the presidential feet are made as comfortable as possible, the pavements are being dug up, re-laid and smoothed over. It is just one of many improvements being made. Houses on the main street are being cleaned with power-hoses. Gardens are being tidied, new flowers are being planted.
The air in Moneygall is filled with the smell of paint. It seems like every spare brush in County Offaly is being used. Every house is being made to look its best, in preparation for the visit, which is likely to take place on Monday 23 May. The decision by one family to paint their house with the colours of the American flag has not gone down well with some of their neighbours. “It looks a bit tacky,” said one woman, as she watched the street turn red, white and blue.
But, overall, the small rural community has pulled together. The parish rector, Canon Stephen Neill, said: “This has brought joy and excitement to the whole area. It’s something to celebrate in what have been very dark times in our country economically.”
Moneygall has already received an economic boost – 3,500 litres of free paint from Dulux to help with the make-over. The village has no bank, no cash point, no coffee shop and a population of less than 300 people. However, it does have two pubs, including Ollie Hayes’s bar in the middle of the main street. The pub is full of Obama memorabilia, including a life-size bust which has pride of place on the bar. Now, the man himself is likely to call in next month. “It’s something I never dreamt would happen in a small village like this,” said Mr Hayes, as he served a group of American tourists. “We’re going to enjoy every minute of this.”
Moneygall is in the heart of Ireland, about 90 minutes from Dublin, on the road to Limerick.
One of the villagers, Henry Healy, is the eighth cousin of Obama. He said: “At first it felt almost surreal but now it’s becoming very real. He’s coming to Moneygall, he’s coming to my home town and I’m hopeful reality will really kick in if I’m privileged to meet the man and shake his hand. You have to pinch yourself. I got a bit taken aback when I saw the CIA here two weeks ago. I can only imagine what my reaction will be when the man himself actually lands here in the village.”
President Obama has released a statement calling on a national moment of silence tomorrow at 11 a.m., and signed a proclamation ordering flags be flown at half-staff as a mark of respect for the victims of the “senseless act of violence” committed yesterday morning.
The President’s statement:
“Tomorrow at 11:00 a.m. eastern standard time, I call on Americans to observe a moment of silence to honor the innocent victims of the senseless tragedy in Tucson, Arizona, including those still fighting for their lives. It will be a time for us to come together as a nation in prayer or reflection, keeping the victims and their families closely at heart.”
The President will observe the moment of silence with White House staff on the South Lawn.
The signed proclamation ordering flags be flown at half-staff reads:
“As a mark of respect for the victims of the senseless acts of violence perpetrated on Saturday, January 8, 2011, in Tucson, Arizona, by the authority vested in me as President of the United States by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, I hereby order that the flag of the United States shall be flown at half-staff at the White House and upon all public buildings and grounds, at all military posts and naval stations, and on all naval vessels of the Federal Government in the District of Columbia and throughout the United States and its Territories and possessions until sunset, January 14, 2011. I also direct that the flag shall be flown at half-staff for the same length of time at all United States embassies, legations, consular offices, and other facilities abroad, including all military facilities and naval vessels and stations.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this ninth day of January, in the year of our Lord two thousand eleven, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fifth.
A portrait of Gabrielle Giffords is placed at a memorial outside the hospital where she and other victims of Saturday’s shootings are recovering in Tucson, Arizona January 9
A portrait of slain federal judge John Roll sits at a makeshift memorial on January 9, in Tucson, Arizona