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Bubbies & Zaydes (Grandparents) for Peace in the Middle East - Peace Vigil
VIGIL FOR JUSTICE
Info, articles, etc.
Leonard Nimoy passes away at 83. One of the first cool science geeks. He will be missed. One of his last tweets.
Woo hoo! FCC votes to keep the Internet free and open to all!
Ugh! Auugh! The stupid! It bu-u-u-r-nssss!!!!! Senator Marco Rubio says that President Obama is not fighting ISIS because he's afraid of offending Iran. Iran is *on* *the* *same* *side* as the US in fighting ISIS!!!!
Secretary of State John Kerry reminds us that Netanyahu supported the Iraq War, showing that his judgment's not all that great.
Patricia Arquette makes a plea at the Oscars for equal pay fo women. Various progressives get all snotty and judgmental about her leaving other groups out. Which, yeah, okay, I agree with this. Her wording wasn't perfect, she could have been better, more inclusive, etc. But Young Turks had a good discussion on her comments both during and after the Awards Ceremony.
Heh! On the eve of another government shutdown, this tweet concerns the recent admission by Boehner and McConnell that they haven't spoken to each other in weeks. Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi 'helpfully” send them each other's phone number. What's amazing about this piece on last night's vote on Homeland Security funding is that the Congressional Republican Party in general are just really, REALLY crappy poker players! The Tea Party people wanted to hold a fifth vote on their hostage-taking when the previous four votes failed miserably. They don't appear to have any sot of back-up strategy
This has all the earmarks of a James O'Keefe scam, he of the ACORN takedown. Please note that when the first PP person is questioned about aborting an African-American child, her concern is with assisting the mother, NOT with having one less black baby in the world.
Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu refuses to meet with Democrats when he arrives to give a speech to a joint session of Congress. Which I consider very uncool! It's a very foolish move on Netanyahu's part as it makes the partisan nature of his visit crystal clear. Before this, I just blamed Speaker Boehner for inviting him, but this just makes the insult to the President very clear.
Excellent! A voting rights amendment would shift the burden of proof to those who wanted to restrict voting in the name of combating this almost completely non-existent "voter fraud."
Bill O'Reilly and yes, Brian Williams, have dishonored themselves and their stations by pretending to be more heroic then they actually were. NBC did the right thing in the Brian Williams case. Fox? It's your turn.
From the piece: "Both Harvard and the Smithsonian acknowledge that the climate is changing because of rising levels of greenhouse gas concentrations caused by human activities." But Willie Soon worked for Harvard-Smithsonian, so he was able to "rent out the nameplate" for use by fossil fuel climate change deniers.
Giuliani continues to stand by his hysterical, overheated statements that were clearly intended to make President Obama an "other," an "outsider," someone who is clearly "not one of us." In his latest defense, he not surprisingly fails to specify what exactly it was that Obama did or said that was so terribly offensive.
Charles Krauthammer demonstrates complete, utter, absolute, unmitigated hypocrisy concerning the Senate filibuster. Once, it was a fine and noble and necessary thing. Now that Democrats are using it against Republicans, it is awful and terrible and completely unnecessary.
Republicans Governors report, correctly, that the GOP simply has no alternative if ACA subsidies are taken out of the ACA. The ACA would more or less just plain collapse. Keep in mind that Rep. Ryan has no intention of fixing the legislation (Which would involve changing a single sentence in the law). Ryan: "The idea is not to make ObamaCare work better or to actually authorize ObamaCare,” The Chief Economist for the Heritage Foundation tries, and fails miserably, to prove that the ACA/Obamacare has been bad for America.
Excellent piece about word choices and inspiring the troops/citizens/workers.
Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld says we're “losing” the War On Terror. Not that Rumsfeld ever makes it clear what "winning" means in the WOT. He just delivers a lot of vague, fuzzy pronouncements that don't make much sense.
Bill O'Reilly uses his program to defend himself against charges that he lied when he said he was in the Falkland Islands, covering the war there. He did indeed make that claim a few times. Yes, he covered riots in Argentine after the war, but that hardly counts as being in a “war zone,” which usually means being around where heavy weapons are being used on two sides.
Good! AP US History will be taught! Colorado has dropped its objections, probably because the rest of the country was pointing and laughing at them.
I completely agree with the interviewer here (Though to say that she "rips" him is a bit of a theatrical exaggeration). This Congressman is full of complaints about Obama's strategy in the Middle East, but doesn't appear to have the slightest idea of how to do better.
Yeah, uh, Rick Perry ("Governor Goodhair" Molly Ivins called him, because whatever else you can say about him, he sure does have a good head of hair) doesn't really appear to know much about Abraham Lincoln's political views, especially about Lincoln's views on the proper role of government.
Observation on conservative "comedy."
Interesting statement articulating the structure of Obama's war on ISIS and other Islamic extremists. Yeah, he does the killing part, but is aware that that's insufficient, that we need to help build others up. Sadly, this person took a lot of grief for her statement, not because it was in any way wrong (The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, Admiral Mullen, said much the same thing on a different issue), but apparently just because she was a pretty blond female.
When Oklahoma lawmakers vote to ban Advanced Placement US History, that's when I think of the decline of America, not when people bring up sexual issues.
Speaker Boehner defends the House Benghazi Committee by going through a list of questions about that event, but all of those questions have been answered already.
Uh, no. Speaker Boehner, by arranging the Netanyahu speech, is NOT "strengthening the President's hand." He's sabotaging the President's foreign policy by making it clear that Congress will not honor a commitment by the United States to reward a good deal by lifting sanctions on Iran. Without a lifting of sanctions, Iran has no reason to make a deal on their weapons program. And then Boehner adopts a completely different position.
In a "tell-all," we learn that Obama was playing coy when he said he wasn't that enthusiastic about gay and lesbian marriage equality. But his predecessor pretended to give a damn about global warming. In fact, Christine Todd Whitman was talking about progressive environmental policies as though they were already fact. They weren't. Bush was lying.
Al Jazeera does a good roundup on the US-Israel relationship
If ACA/Obamacare subsidies are rendered non-operative, Rep. Ryan makes it clear that the GOP would be perfectly happy to see millions of people lose their health insurance.
A few months ago, a single Senator blocked a bill that would have prevented a number of veteran suicides. New bill just passed that will fix that problem.
Very serious concern raised about the Anti-ACA lawsuit that the Supreme Court is scheduled to hear. Do the plaintiffs have “standing”? Are they being hurt by the existence of the law?
Good comparison-contrast between the two great projects of the 21st Century, the attempt to copy Alexander the Great in the Middle East starting with Iraq versus the building of the ACA/Obamacare.
Don't agree with Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) calling herself a “combat veteran.” She's a veteran, yes, and she was in the theater of the Iraq War, but she was a REMF (Modern synonym is “pogue”) who was in Kuwait and never saw any combat.
Jon Stewart announces his retirement from the Daily Show. That show is “appointment TV” for me (I turn on the TV specifically to watch that particular show and turn it off when the show is over).
Jeb Bush screws up by publishing his entire email archives from his Florida Governor days. The archive includes communications from constituents that contain phone numbers, email addresses, Social Security numbers, etc.
Good! Papa John's pizza franchise in New York pays almost $800,000 in wage theft case.
On Senator Rand Paul, I'm in full agreement with the blogger here, it's not required for every politician to know every issue In detail, but no, the value of US currency did not change from the "Full Faith and Credit of the United States" to "used car loans, (etc.)." No such change was ever legislated. When one is speaking of the deficit, it kind of helps to know sort of, kind of, what the deficit is. Paul describes the deficit as being $1 trillion. Actually, it's less than half that. Thing is, these are his signature issues!!! These are the issues he's supposed to be an expert in!!!
All right! Queen Elizabeth II endorses marriage equality between gays and straights.
John Stossel of Fox News introduces the libertarian idea of "spontaneous order." Did it work in Iraq in 2003 after Baghdad fell? There may have been some of that, but there was nowhere near enough to prevent the city from getting thoroughly sacked and looted. The ministries and museums were all stripped and plundered to their bare walls. Unfortunately for reconstructing Iraq, a bureaucrat without an office is like a sailor without a ship. Pretty close to useless. Did Wal-Mart help in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina? Sure, but what they did was to deliver more goods, more quickly. They couldn't rescue people from rooftops, because doing that requires a standing force that's properly trained, equipped and organized. They could deliver more goods because they were already equipped and trained to do that.
The House Oversight Committee wants to know whether the Obama Administration exercised "improper influence" over the FCC. Slight problem with that. The FCC is an executive branch agency with no special built-in safeguards. What exactly constitutes "improper influence"?!?!?!
Three House Democrats announce they will skip speech by Netnyahu. From The Hill>: "This week, Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer and other top officials huddled with top Democrats at the Capitol, seeking to assuage concerns that the speech shouldn’t be taken as a slight to Obama." But that's the problem, it IS a slight, it's an intentional insult to Obama and Democrats are reacting appropriately.
If the Supreme Court rules against the ACA in the King v Burwell case, their reputation for impartiality and non-partisanship could be the first casualty.
Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's strategy for taking control of the Senate, that is, to oppose anything and everything, worked. But "If the [Republican] party’s aim is to [now] show Americans it is ready to govern, we are witnessing an epic fail."
It's now been 20 times that Republicans have promised to come up with a replacement for the ACA and 20 time they've come up empty, but they just now voted to repeal the ACA for the 54th time. One would think that, in a rational, sane legislature, that they'd come up with a replacement first and then vote to repeal the original version.
Representative Paul Ryan (R-WI) made his reputation as a deficit scold, constantly lecturing Democrats on their spendthrift ways. Problem: his own budget figures have never added up and his latest budget is no exception (It adds $100 billion to the deficit).
And oh yeah, now that the Democrats are in the minority and are using the filibuster to block legislation, reporters at Politco suddenly notice, after six years of Republicans using the filibuster on a routine, everyday basis, that the filibuster is used to block legislation that the minority doesn't like.
The Utah State Representative was eventually persuaded to see reason and to join everybody else in declaring that having sex with an unconscious woman was rape (And yes, he's anti-choice), but yes, he initially argued that there should be an exception for married people.
Heh! Just yesterday, DKos ran a lengthy piece on how Republicans have been trying to convince people that they'll have a tax reform plan and a health care plan any day now, after FIVE YEARS of twiddling their thumbs. Here's the really fun part, Rep. Ryan is now in charge of both plans!
I usually don't have much use for Senator Rand Paul, but he actually had a good statement on Jeb Bush's youthful use of pot: "I think in politics the biggest thing, the thing that voters from any part of the spectrum hate worse than anything is hypocrisy. And hypocrisy is, 'Hey I did it and it's okay for me because I was rich and at an elite school but if you're poor and black or brown and live in a poor section of one of our big cities, we're going to put you in jail and throw away the key.'"
Good! Cheerleading is a job like any other and needs to be compensated like any other. Cheerleaders should be able to retire from their careers with nice, comfortable checking accounts, not with impoverishment.
Boehner and McConnell deliver the most idiotically ridiculous criticisms of the ACA/Obamacare I've heard all day! From the Truman Administration (When American first considered a national health care plan) until 2008, capitalists and Republicans had a chance to produce their own health care plan and to run on it. They've had since 2010 to produce a fleshed-out, detailed alternative to the ACA. They've miserably failed. No one should have any faith that they'll provide an alternative after they've canceled everybody's current ACA health care plan. One of Boehner's criticisms is particularly idiotic, he complains that the ACA imposes a “one-size-fits-all solution.” What's his point? Does cancer treatment differ from Alabama to Alaska? Are the treatments for hernias different in Texas and Connecticut?
Disappointed to see that Obama strongly supports the TPP, but am pleased that most of my fellow progressives> agree with me that TPP is a truly awful idea. Lots of daylight between the President and the rest of us on this.
Fox media critic Howard Kurtz asks plaintively why the President won't trust the traditional mainstream news media to get his message out, why he feels obliged to talk to a bunch of dirty hippie bloggers (Actually vloggers in this case). Gee Howie, maybe because the mainstream media has been a miserable failure at carrying Obama's messages?
Very cool! With the victory of the Syriza Party, Greece moves away from failed economic policies and towards something better!
Woo hoo! Walmart repays $188 million to its employees for wage theft (failing to pay for overtime hours, rest breaks etc.)
Ralph Nader comes up with an awful idea, to which a blogger makes a very good point. Nothing wrong with making temporary, tactical alliances with ideological enemies (Liberal left with Libertarian right, left with corporations, etc.) but permanent alliances are unwise and impractical as they call for far too many compromises. Liberals and Libertarians are agreed that NSA spying is terrible and should be curbed or stopped, but liberals are not willing to give up the fight against global warming in order to stop NSA spying, not should they. That would be a horrible choice of priorities.
Jess McIntosh, a spokeswoman for EMILY's List, said of the bill that mandates medically unnecessary ultrasounds: "When you can't find a single woman to support a bill that affects only women, that bill is probably a terrible idea."
Good! It strikes me as entirely appropriate for Obama to refuse to treat Netanyahu as an official visitor. Netanyahu is not visiting as a guest of the President, he is visiting at the invitation of the opposition party. There's no need for the President to act as though the Israeli Prime Minister is there in any sort of official capacity. Obama is treating the visit as though Netanyahu were strictly a private-citizen tourist.
Good! Glad to see Pennsylvania's new Governor taking a no-nonsense, hard-line attitude towards his predecessor's last-minute appointments. There's no reason whatsoever why any appointments should be made by a lame-duck administration that's on its way out the door anyway.
Well, THAT'S pretty cool! The 2012 presidential candidate Mitt Romney agrees that global warming is real and needs to be solved. As I recall, he and Newt Gingrich both agreed that climate change was real and human-caused back during the 2012 campaign, but neither of them wanted to alienate Republican primary voters, so they both kept their lips sealed about it.
House Speaker John Boehner invites Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak to a joint session of Congress. A professor says: "It's unprecedented. It's hitting below the belt. It's taking partisanship to a whole new level."
Anyone remember Kobane, that Kurdish city that was about to fall to ISIS any day now? Yup, still in Kurdish hands. The momentum and string of victories by ISIS has clearly stopped.
Ted Nugent, rock star and a member of the NRA Board of Directors, hugely exaggerates his popularity in terms of Facebook “likes.” No, he's not more popular than Taylor Swift (73 million “likes”) or Beyoncé (67 million), he's just got 2.3 million, not 28 million.
When I was younger, I heard a lot about conservatives wanting to go back to the 1950s. I've been saying for awhile that now they've set their sights on the Gilded Age (After the Civil War and before the Progressive Era). Proof? Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) criticizes the 1905 Lochner decision.
Republicans forget that they're still in a democracy and that being in the majority doesn't just mean they can just do whatever they jolly well please. They still have to consider minority sentiments. Republican female Representatives become so concerned about an extremist anti-choice bill that they block it, even though the annual protest marking the anniversary of Roe vs. Wade was in town. The bill was scuttled.
The recidivism rate refers to detainees at Guantanamo that were released and who then engaged in military actions against the US. Fox News and a US Senator claim the rate is 30%. Actually, out of 620 releases, 107 re-engaged and of those, 48 were killed or re-captured. Of those who re-engaged, 101 were released prior to early 2009, that is, during the last administration.
Fox News apologizes for repeatedly suggesting the existence of “no-go zones” that were reserved exclusively for Muslims and that Christians dared not go into. One of those supposed “zones” was Birmingham, England, a city that the mayor of Birmingham describes as only 22% Muslim. And yes, as CenkUygur shows, they made this assertion quite a few times. Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal demonstrates he doesn't pay close attention to the news and repeats the “no-go zone” lie well after it's been disproven.
The not-at-all crazy Ben Carson gets confused about the rapid advance of ISIS in the middle of last year. Yes, they were motivated and the Iraqi Army was not, but American forces had largely departed about two years earlier, meaning no, it wasn't anything like the American Revolution. ISIS didn't defeat ”the most powerful and professional military force on the planet,” they defeated the force that America trained and equipped. Big difference.
Very interesting! Gun groups have claimed for years that "If only civilians had been armed..." but in this test, arming civilians doesn't do any good against attackers. This actually just confirms what we've known since at least the Medieval Era (And probably the Greek & Roman era), that a small, organized and combat-disciplined group can easily stand up to a much larger, disorganized mob.
Kansas Governor Sam Brownback is convinced, Convinced, I tell you!!!!, that trickle-down economics works. It doesn't. He's now raiding the education budget in order to make up for his tax cuts.
Boo! Hisss! Rand Paul disses people receiving Social Security Disability benefits (Full disclosure: I receive them).
Wow! Apparently, there's a really, really large amount of money going through the Federal Reserve that the Federal Reserve Inspector General doesn't seem to know anything about!
I don't agree that it's "brave" to carry the child of a rapist, I don't see anything noble or courageous about that, but I do agree that when in 31 states, that the rapist is able to claim parental rights, that's deeply sick and immoral. When you build a father or a family on top of rape, an act of hatred and violence, you're absolutely guaranteeing failure.
Oh, puh-leeeezz!!!! People, nothing is "Obama's Katrina"!!! Nothing Obama has done or has not done is even remotely comparable to allowing an American city to be underwater!
What? Still more surveillance?!?!?! People are calling for still more surveillance to prevent attacks as happened in France? The Senate Intel Committee concluded that surveillance did absolutely nothing to protest Americans before or after 9/11, in fact, a woman CIA person was identified who received early intel on 9/11 and did nothing. No, more surveillance isn't the answer to anything.
Diversity is not a strong suit of the GOP either. After the House appointed 21 white men and one white woman to head committees, how did the Senate do? Erm...well...er..um...20 white men and two white women.
Bwah-hah-hah!!! President Obama is now being termed an “obstructionist” by Fox News. Hmm, after six straight years of never-ending obstruction, are the supporters of Republican Senators lacking self-awareness much?
Yes, the comments after this piece are shocking in their racism and ignorance. And yes, this is yet another example of there being no good sources among the traditional media. There are better ones and worse ones, but no really satisfactory ones.
Senator Marco Rubio: "It is hard for me to imagine retiring at 65 and spending the next quarter century not working. I expect to be working, doing something productive and fulfilling."
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