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Hurry. Limited. Treat yourself. Or a loved one. 5 December 2008

Posted by marisacat in 2008 Election, Democrats, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Lie Down Fall Down Dems.
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HA! A friend forwarded the BO pitch for money (for the DNC) using this… It gave me a chuckle… and I am stealing it as I am out of ideas.

This holiday season, celebrate the historic accomplishment of our movement for change. Treat yourself or a loved one to a limited edition Obama coffee mug.

Items purchased by December 15th are guaranteed to be delivered before December 25th.

When you make your donation, you’ll be supporting the Democratic National Committee. The resources they invested in the 50-state organizing strategy made this movement possible — help us build for future victories together.

Share this amazing moment with your friends and family. Thanks to supporters like you, we all have the opportunity to bring real change to America.

Get your holiday Obama mug today […]

Can I get the J Crew outfit MO wore on Leno?  No?  The rhodium ring – in a 25.00 knock off version – for my fidelity?  No?  Just the mug?  hmm not a great shopping “experience”…

****

Oddly enough… and even tho financial discussions cause my ears to start to drip blood… here is something (full text) I feel pretty good about.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Rep. Barney Frank said on Thursday he and Sen. Christopher Dodd are urging President-elect Barack Obama to retain Sheila Bair as the chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp and possibly give her a larger role to regulate mortgages.

Frank, chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, also told reporters at a consumer banking conference that at the moment Congress would not be willing to approve the rest of funding for the $700 billion financial rescue package.

Frank, a Massachusetts Democrat, said “at the very least” the Treasury Department will need to use the funds to halt home foreclosures. Dodd, a Connecticut Democrat, is chairman of the Senate Banking Committee.

(Reporting by John Poirier)

Not that Barney and Dodd give a fuck in hell, they don’t – the Dems did nada… but, from  all I have read, Sheila Bair has been calling for remedies for sub prime to be actively sought and engaged for three years.  AND when FDIC took over Indymac Bank… somewhere in the Southland, OC, thereabouts.. they began CALLING people who held mortgages with the bank and seeking resolution.  So, you know, like wow.  An alive person in the mess.

Let’s keep her.  Plus every interview I have caught with her she seems sane and on top of things.  A Bush appointee.  Go figure.

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1. marisacat - 5 December 2008

In a continuing saga… I’ve tried to keep up, over years with the lay offs and re organistaions down at LA TImes… cannot keep up.. it is just endless.

One of Scotland’s national institutions was reeling last night after the entire staff of the Glasgow-based Herald newspaper group was made redundant and told to re-apply for a severely reduced number of jobs.

The shock move, which many fear could sound the death knell for Scotland’s beleaguered newspaper industry, saw 235 journalists at The Herald, Sunday Herald and Evening Times being issued with redundancy notices by the Herald and Times Group, a subsidiary of the regional media giant Newsquest.

The editorial departments on the three papers, two of which have histories going back hundreds of years, will be merged, resulting in about 30 or 40 job losses. About 200 are likely to be rehired, but only if they agree to new terms and conditions.

The cutbacks, announced yesterday afternoon at an emotional meeting at which several members of staff broke down in tears, are the latest in a string of desperate decisions the newspaper group has taken to try to revive the titles’ plunging circulations. ::snip::

2. marisacat - 5 December 2008

hmm from what i have read the next thing to happen, the buidlings will begin to fall down. The result of corruption, cheating, slave labor and so on.

Has the bubble burst?

Nov 27th 2008 | DUBAI
From The Economist print edition

As the sheen comes off glitzy Dubai, the other Gulf states are getting nervous too

“THEY said you couldn’t create islands in the middle of a city,” shouts a property advertisement over a jammed Dubai motorway. “We said, what’s next?” The range of answers has become gloomier by the week, as the debate moves from whether the Dubai property bubble will burst to just how bad it is going to get. Some nervous bankers think property prices could fall by 80% or so in the next year or so. A few months ago, rich foreigners who had bought villas in Dubai were complaining about the quality of the sand on their artificial beaches or the difficulty of getting water to circulate around the twiddly fronds of the man-made island shaped like a palm.

Now prices for some smart developments have been cut by 40% since September, shares in property firms have lost 80% of their value since June, and big developers are laying people off. ::snip::

[snagged from Angry Arab]

3. Hair Club for Men - 5 December 2008

Did anybody catch the interview with “Matthew Alexander” at “Democracy Now?”

I got the odd feeling that Amy Goodman and Scott Horton were being “spun” by the Pentagon. The underlying message behind Alexander’s book “How to Break a Terrorist” seems to be that the vast majority of American casulaties in Iraq happened because of Abu Ghraib and Gitmo.

I saw a similar thing happen with Thomas Rick’s book “Fiasco” (which was really propaganda for the coming “surge” in the guise of a book attacking the Bush administration’s “mishandling” of the occupation).

AMY GOODMAN: I want to go to some larger issues, this very important point that you make that you believe that more than 3,000 US soldiers were killed in Iraq—I mean, this is a huge number—because of torture, because of US practices of torture. Explain what you mean.

MATTHEW ALEXANDER: Well, you know, when I was in Iraq, we routinely handled foreign fighters, who we would capture. Many of—several of them had been scheduled to be suicide bombers, and we had captured them before they carried out their missions.

AMY GOODMAN: Coming from where?

MATTHEW ALEXANDER: They came from all over the area. They came from Yemen. They came from northern Africa. They came from Saudi. All over the place. And the number one reason these foreign fighters gave for coming to Iraq was routinely because of Abu Ghraib, because of Guantanamo Bay, because of torture practices. In their eyes, they see us as not living up to the ideals that we have prescribed to. You know, we say that we represent freedom, liberty and justice. But when we torture people, we’re not living up to those ideals. And it’s a huge incentive for them to join al-Qaeda.

In other words, if “we” were living up to “our ideals” it would be OK to invade a sovreign country?

4. wu ming - 5 December 2008

the first substantive report i’ve seen on the thailand airport occupation, from a BBC correspondant in bangkok. sure looks like fascism to me

Within a few days the mass sit-in will just be a surreal memory.

But the questions their actions have raised about the state of Thailand will continue long after the last plastic hand-clapper is picked up and disposed of.

How could a country as advanced and as dependent on exports and tourism as Thailand allow such a vital transport hub to be stormed by a mob that never numbered more than a few thousand?

What is the PAD, and what gives the movement the confidence to commit its dramatic acts of economic sabotage without fearing any legal sanction?

[snip]

One of the many retired generals supporting its occupation at the airport observed that it should be seen as a military, not a civilian organisation.

Behind the “aunties with clappers” and well-groomed young women clutching lap-dogs that are the public face of the movement are squads of hoodlums, armed with batons, metal spikes and hand-guns who man the barricades and hunt down intruders.

One morning I followed them as they dragged an alleged government spy off to an undisclosed location, kicking and punching him.

I was unable to find out his fate. Some of these thugs are members of private armies run by retired generals.

so where does that leave thailand?

The government and its rural followers believe there is a palace-army-elite conspiracy to rob them of their electoral mandate.

The PAD and its middle-class followers believe the pro-Thaksin camp intends to turn Thailand into a republic, and overthrow the existing social order.

With so much believed to be at stake, compromise between the two sides is almost impossible.

the bit about who is backing the PAD’s also good, but i’m trying not to cut and paste the whole thing. lots of food for thought, and a potential mirror for our own future, depending on where things head in the next decade or so.

5. marisacat - 5 December 2008

3

that fellow has been all over.. think I caught him on both NPR and KGO, the local talk radio that is pretty clearly aligned with the Dem party, local faction.

Well, all this hub bub is useless. Until someone connects AG with School of the Americas with the US prison system and sentencing … it is all next to meaningless. yeah we so have ideals. But this fellow fits in well with re dressed neo liberalism. About to be inaugurated. Etc.

6. marisacat - 5 December 2008

4

thanks wu ming. Its been hard to get a handle on any of that… Perhaps they are ue for a rainbow colored Revolution… little US Flags hidden in their back pockets.

7. Hair Club for Men - 5 December 2008

Justin Raimondo is sort of on the same track about the focus on “torture” in today’s column.

Glenn Greenwald, among the best of the liberals, is AWOL on Obama’s foreign policy sellout. Sure, torture is bad, and it’s very noble to be against it, I’m sure, but what about the endless war that gives it a conceptual framework and legitimizes it in the name of “national security”?

But here’s a question I’d like to see Obama’s critics ask themselves.

In 2005 and 2006 during the height of the insurgency and the civil war did you think that the US would be “driven out” of Iraq or that the US military effort would collapse in a sort of Saigon helicopter on the roof moment?

I don’t know what Chris Floyd or Dennis Perrin thought, but a lot of people who opposed the occupation of Iraq thought the Sunni insurents were going to win an outright victory over the US military, that at some point the US military would be so ground down by the Sunnis that the Shiite majority would simply rise up and push them out.

I’ve been listening to a lot of the .mpg3 files the Socialist Workers Party (the British SWP that Lenin from Lenin’s Tomb belongs to) puts up on their website for their yearly Marxist school, and the line at the end of so many of their talks is “when the US occupation goes down in flames the left in America and Britain will have a resurgence.”

Because if the anti-war left is in a bad spot it might just be because they never addressed this question honestly or asked themselves just who the Sunni insurgents were.

8. Hair Club for Men - 5 December 2008

Well, all this hub bub is useless. Until someone connects AG with School of the Americas with the US prison system and sentencing … it is all next to meaningless. yeah we so have ideals. But this fellow fits in well with re dressed neo liberalism. About to be inaugurated. Etc.

That’s the sense I got during that interview, that the book’s author (conveniently anonymous) was doing something very similar to what Thomas Ricks was doing in 2006.

If I were a mainstream journalist with access to Obama (maybe Rachel Maddow the next time she has Obama on her show) here’s the question I’d ask.

Questioner: President Obama. You won the Democratic party’s nomination largely on the fact that Hillary Clinton voted yes on the invasion of Iraq and, while you were’t in the Senate, you gave speeches opposing it. You pointed out that Senator Clinton’s vote raised questions about her judgement. In light of your questions about her “judgement” why have you given her the Secretary of State job instead of a broader portfolio on reforming healthcare?

Obama: Dorris Kearns Goodwin. Team of rivals. Yada Yada

Questioner follows up: Hillary Clinton has an independent power base and will be a very powerful Secretary of State, as you point out. Is the fact that you haven’t put Clinton in charge of healthcare a sign that you’re giving up on national health care because we can’t afford it in light of the bailout? Did you ask Senator Clinton if she’d be interested in the job she had under her husband back in the 1990s? Are you putting your more powerful cabinet members in foreign policy positions in order to prepare the way for an escalation of the war in Afghanistan?

9. marisacat - 5 December 2008

Well long arc, none of what we are doing globally or in Iraq under the shit speech of democracy or whatever palaver, intervention, saving, freeing wimmens (so many stories ramping up, the rapes in Congo)… on and on it goes.. will end well. But it does not and never has seemed that any of it ends soon.

Until some undetermined point in the future, the US, no matter who leads the joint, will pour money into the war. Against whomever. Ultimately China.. I would imagine.

10. marisacat - 5 December 2008

It won’t be Maddow. She lvoed his lines in his Nov 4 acceptance speech about taking it to the enemy. She chortled, pretty much.

Suit her up, from the combat boots upwards.

11. wu ming - 5 December 2008

re. 6. that’s one of the odd things in this case, i haven’t heard anything about ties back to the US, although the monarchy was certainly a trusty cold war ally (and the poor north had a decades-long communist resistance/guerilla war until they went back into politics after the 1991 restoration of democracy). both sides are smart about photogenic color-coordination as well.

12. wu ming - 5 December 2008

re. 7

if al-sadr hadn’t been so willing to play ball and tell his movement to stand down, and if the iranians hadn’t seriously turned the screws on their patrons in iraq, we could very well have had that saigon moment. supply lines can be cut pretty decisively wen if you have lots of air power, if there’s a big enough coordinated attack. the sunnis alone couldn’t have done it, but the shiia could have, especially had they allied at key moments.

what i’m less sure about is that it would have given the antiwar left in the us and britain an opening. my hunch is that it would have had the opposite effect of solidifying american support around massive aerial strikes, possibly nuclear, and utterly anti-anti-war, because of the humiliation a loss would have created, coupled with the public blood sacrifice of a big number of our soldiers all at once. a trickle of dead and dismembered don’t trigger the same response as a massacre, especially to those who believe themselves invincible titans.

13. wu ming - 5 December 2008

that should have read “even when you have lots of air power”

14. marisacat - 5 December 2008

well Pfaff is moving right along. He regretted his hopes for Obama a week or more ago. I am expecting an apology soon from him for anything he wrote to exhort a vote for the Obster:

HEIDELBERG, Germany—U.S. President-elect Barack Obama has completed his national security team, and its composition confirms that nothing fundamental is likely to change in American foreign policy.

“Fundamental” is the key word, meaning change in the goals pursued and the assumptions that underlie policy. One expects an end to the blatant contempt for international law and institutions displayed by the Bush administration. The torture, illegal seizures of individuals and secret imprisonments, and flaunting of generally accepted norms of human rights will probably end, although the records of all the new appointees are not entirely clear on this subject.

[Pfaff will be stepping back on that soon. and while i am at it FUCK PFAFF, because he does know how this nation works. — Mcat]

However, the war on Muslim radicalism will go on. The evidence suggests that American policy under Obama will be a continuation of the neoconservative foreign policy of the Bush administration, given a human face.

According to Obama’s own intention to carry the war against al-Qaida into the Pakistan tribal territories, the current American attitude toward national sovereignty remains unchanged. […]

[S]imon Sefarty, a senior figure in the Washington policy community, listing what were “increasingly agreed” with the European allies (in summer 2008) to be the “nontraditional” threats to Europe and America, began with the threat of “terrorist groups of global reach and potential access to weapons of mass destruction,” and continued with “WMD diversification and proliferation, failed states, organized crime, access to energy, climate change, pandemics and more.”

He urged a “complex mixture of military and civilian capabilities along with a combination of institutional tools, both national and multilateral” to resolve the threats. His list left out resurgent superpowers (presumably traditional threats), but otherwise would seem to include the failings of most of the non-Western world.

This same war to make other states “into the American image” has been waged repeatedly during the last 50 years: in Vietnam, in Laos and Cambodia, in Nicaragua, in Iraq where “victory” (whatever that would be) still eludes the U.S., in Afghanistan in a war now spreading into Pakistan, in Somalia (through an Ethiopian proxy), and against Hezbollah and Hamas.

It invariably has failed, at heavy cost to the societies involved, and little or no benefit to the United States. The rule long ago empirically established is that intervention in other countries to remake them invariably inflames and sustains nationalist resistance to the invader. But Barack Obama and his team seem ready to try again.

Sefarty is not the only one to suggest a more humane war machine… Thomas Barnett has for years. Others too. Beef up a form of Civil Affairs… have even more NGOs and food for the starving intl orgs sweep in with us… etc. Sell it hard to the white liberal chat factory class. Academics.. and all the blow hards. he’ll have Caroline Kennedy selling his expansion wars.

Obama is perfect to package and sell that shit.

15. Hair Club for Men - 5 December 2008

if al-sadr hadn’t been so willing to play ball and tell his movement to stand down, and if the iranians hadn’t seriously turned the screws on their patrons in iraq, we could very well have had that saigon moment. supply lines can be cut pretty decisively wen if you have lots of air power, if there’s a big enough coordinated attack. the sunnis alone couldn’t have done it, but the shiia could have, especially had they allied at key moments.

I’m not so sure about this. Gary Brecher (the “War Nerd”) wrote an interesting column comparing Sadr to the IRA in Derry. He argued that at some point, a well-trained regular military will always beat local militias.

I think “Mathew Alexander” (whoever he is) is hitting on a weak point in the anti-war movement. Nobody ever asked honest questions about who the Sunni insurgents were and whether or not any of us would really want to live under them.

And the Sunni insurgents (unlike for example Evo Morales or the NLF) never quite managed to state their case to people in the imperialist country.

So you had American on the left watching the chaos in Iraq and not being terribly upset that it was destroying Bush’s credibility. And now, with Obama, you have an automatic split down the middle of the “left”, between people who see no good coming out of the Obama administration and people on the softer left who are hoping for maybe a reformed health care program and maybe a slightly less crazy foreign policy.

The latter group will be inclinded to defend Obama and attack his critics.

16. marisacat - 5 December 2008

Speaking of Lenin he has a piece up in the SW… on which UK papers pushed hardest with no evidence on British jihadists in Mumbai.

Somewhere this am… forget where, I read that some of the killed, captured – who it was reported had previously been in Mumbai, saying they were Malaysian students.. were housed at Nariman House.

Tangled web…

17. marisacat - 5 December 2008

It was in a Ha’aretz link I followed from a lenin’s tomb comment…

Sources said Kasab’s colleagues killed in the operation had stayed at the Nariman House in the past.

“They have stayed in Nariman house on rental basis identifying themselves as Malaysian students.” said a source. Police were trying to determine why Nariman House rooms were given to non-Jews, the Times of India reported.

18. marisacat - 5 December 2008

34 years… would be… ’74.. biggest single month job losses since 1974. 535,000.

19. marisacat - 5 December 2008

The wealthy suffer too… mais oui…

Almost everyone has lost something—if not their jobs, then 25 to 50 percent of their retirement savings—and nearly everyone is glum, anxious, hung over. Prudence is the watchword now: sackcloth after the brilliant silks and brocades of the gilded age. The day after Lehman Brothers went down, a high-end Manhattan department store reportedly had the biggest day of returns in its history. “Because the wives didn’t want the husbands to get the credit-card bills,” says a fashion-world insider. A prominent designer says ruefully, “People really aren’t shopping at all unless there’s a deal or sale. It’s pretty dramatic—they have the stores at their mercy.”

20. Intermittent Bystander - 5 December 2008

Short on cash, some put a price on themselves

“I did it because I’m a student and I’m always broke,” said Aylesworth, who spent several delicate minutes in a small room at the Seattle Sperm Bank last month.

::whip, splash::

Increasingly, industry officials say people are hoping to trade spare body fluids, tissues and other parts for payments that can range from $20 to $50 a pop for blood plasma to $60 to $100 for a shot of sperm, $200 for a shiny ponytail and up to $7,000 for a fertile egg.

::snip, snap::

Sharon LaMothe, a board member of the Egg Donation and Surrogacy Professional Association, a trade group for donors and surrogate mothers, said it doesn’t surprise her that more people would be looking to donate in a down economy. But, she added, age and medical and educational background can exclude even the most enthusiastic candidates.

“They get screened out on the first phone call,” said LaMothe. “A lot of egg agencies won’t take anybody over 32 — and many stop at 29.”

In Aylesworth’s case, the mechanical engineering student in Seattle says his sperm was rejected because it couldn’t withstand rigorous storage requirements. While he didn’t take the verdict personally, Aylesworth said he will miss the chance to donate 10 times a month at $60 a session.

“At a party I brought it up and people said, ‘You could pay rent on that,’” he said.

::whiff, sniff::

Ethicists, however, contend that the rise in such services during an economic downturn underscores problems inherent in the transaction.

“The uptick gives lie to the system that invokes ‘donors’ when it’s really a system of ‘sellers,’” said Art Caplan, director of the Center for Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania and a frequent contributor for msnbc.com.

“Altruistic motivation isn’t going up,” he added. “The drive to get paid is going up.”

Caplan worries most about donation of genetic material such as sperm and eggs. People who need cash may not be truthful about their medical background, for instance. Or they might be so desperate for money, they don’t think through the potential for physical and emotional complications.

“In economic hard times, if somebody went out to sell a baby, there would be moral contempt,” he said. “But if you sell the ingredients for a baby — and the oven — we don’t pay attention.”

Delicate framing, Art!

21. Intermittent Bystander - 5 December 2008
22. marisacat - 5 December 2008

Uchitelle on the job losses:

[O]ver all, the losses since the recession began now total about 1.9 million, with most coming in the last three months.

“We have gone from recession into something that looks more like collapse,” said Ian Shepherdson, chief domestic economist at High Frequency Economics, referring to the accelerating job losses in recent months.

In addition, 70 percent of the job loss was in the service sector, particularly in retailing, temporary work and hotel and restaurant employment. Indeed, the only sectors adding jobs in November were health care and education.

“The service sector had been holding up relatively well into this downturn, but now the service sector is just imploding,” said Michael T. Darda, chief economist at the research firm MKM Partners. “As goes the service sector, so goes the U.S. economy.” […]

The losses in November far exceeded the 350,000 figure that was the consensus expectation of economists.

“Business shut down in November,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Economy.com. “Businesses are in survival mode and are slashing jobs and investment to conserve cash. Unless credit starts flowing again soon, big job losses will continue well into next year.”

23. marisacat - 5 December 2008

FWIW

Meet the Press: Barack Obama

Fox News Sunday: Condoleezza Rice, Sens. Levin, Shelby

This Week: Condoleezza Rice, Roundtable with Peggy Noonan, E.J. Dionne, Cokie Roberts and George Will.

Face the Nation: Sens. Dodd, Sessions

Late Edition: Govs. Pawlenty, Rendell

24. marisacat - 5 December 2008

Madman just popped me this… Geithner wants to dump Bair. My ears are starting to drip blood (the altitude of financial discussions)… but all I can say is DUMB.

From a Bloomberg article the ClusterFuckStock site links:

Geithner, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, has argued Bair isn’t a team player and is too focused on protecting her agency rather than the financial system as a whole, according to two congressional officials and a person familiar with his thinking. Bair has battled with Geithner and fellow regulators over aid to Citigroup Inc. and other emergency actions, making her enemies in the Bush administration.

“The idea of having an independent actor on the stage with you who might not be singing the same tune can make you nervous,” said Wayne Abernathy, a former Treasury official who is now executive vice president with the American Bankers Association in Washington. “They recognize that she’s a very independent person.”

The righties will be pleased they love to hate her but don’t drive it too hard as her name doesn’t cause people to polarize… not well known enough…

25. marisacat - 5 December 2008

via The Page

THE RECOUNT IS OVER!

Except for 133 missing from Minneapolis, the last of the 2.9 million Minnesota ballots were stored away in Wright County late Friday morning.

Latest Star-Tribune tabulation shows Coleman ahead of Franken in the Senate race by a 251-vote margin.

State board will convene Dec. 16 to begin counting thousands of challenged ballots.

26. marisacat - 5 December 2008

Greg Mankiw is liking the Obama economic team.

27. marisacat - 5 December 2008

Truth is the first victim… but it sure gets old:

A hospital doctor at Mumbai’s JJ Hospital, which received the bodies of six Jewish and Israeli hostages from the Chabad House terrorist siege, has cast doubt on a report claiming that signs of torture were apparent on the bodies of the victims.

Dr. Gajanan Chawan, who saw the bodies, told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday he did not believe the wounds he observed suggested the hostages had been tortured prior to their deaths.

Asked if he saw any evidence of torture on the bodies, Chawan replied, “No, I don’t think so.” He added that the majority of the wounds he could identify had been caused by firearms. ::snipwhippy::

28. marisacat - 5 December 2008

I am laughing really hard. Check who said this (and more than that too):

President-elect Barack Obama has appointed an extraordinary team for national security policy. On its face, it violates certain maxims of conventional wisdom: that appointing to the Cabinet individuals with an autonomous constituency, and who therefore are difficult to fire, circumscribes presidential control; that appointing as national security adviser, secretary of state and secretary of defense individuals with established policy views may absorb the president’s energies in settling disputes among strong-willed advisers.

It took courage for the president-elect to choose this constellation and no little inner assurance — both qualities essential for dealing with the challenge of distilling order out of a fragmenting international system. In these circumstances, ignoring conventional wisdom may prove to have been the precondition for creativity. Both Obama and the secretary of state-designate, Sen. Hillary Clinton, must have concluded that the country and their commitment to public service require their cooperation. ::snip::

29. BooHooHooMan - 5 December 2008

I was wondering
about the flake rate of Obam votes v. Franken Votes ….in the Minnie
Prezzy……………………..The Sen……………………………….Difference
Ob : 1,573,354……. …..Franken:….1,211,000 @+/-……-362K/Ob
Mc:: 1,275,409 …………Coleman:…1,211,000 @+/-…@…-65K/Mc
———————————————————
Ob :..+297,945…………

Oh what the hell, PLAY with the nums
Lop off and GIVE the 60K Non Coleman Mccain Votes, Assume they
went Franken to pare down the Obama Franken Differential:
You Have 302 Thousand “Fuck Al” Obamakins, arriving a little
more than the Ob margin over McCain state wide.

So what’s a More than Reasonable way to account for
the Indies and Barkley?

Obbut its Christmas Time after Teh Greatest Campaign Evah®…..
Let’s not be chintzy.

Let’s assume the 495,475 Indy Repub Barkley Sen Votes
actually Voted for Obam along the 54% Obam State Avg.,

DIDN’T HAPPEN but lets not jump to conclusions and
criticize THE ONE of Teh GCE®
Let lop Those 267THOUSAND off Obama’s Votes To Spare

Take the “Fuck Al” / “Goin Barkley Anyways” Votes
and Pare them OFF
the 302K Gross the Straight -Up-Obam / “Fuck Al” nums
and ya still get this:
+302K Obam/ AL? AL WHO?!? (Straight Ob / Fuck AL)
– 267K Obam/ Barkley Anyways
———————-
…. 35 THOUSAND minimum Obam Unmobilized4Franken

After nearly a 300 Grand Margin over mcCain
in millions of votes cast in Minnesota,
Not even a Coupla Hunerd to Spare for AL by Ob and Teh GCE®???

Funny, but I doubt we’ll be hearing this from the Wizards of Ob,
this Silence of the Lambs and their Fucking of the AL.
Not a bleat,
lest they’d have to see themselves as Nadir. (sic)

It doesn’t look good from what I can tell
( What do I know? I’m “moran”-ed in Jersey. LOL.)
but the Al Camp jockeying sounds just a little bit desperate to me..

I would like to see Franken beat Coleman
but it might even be better
hearing what Al has to say about having his ticket “lifted” as it were
by Teh Greatest Campaign Evah®…

30. marisacat - 5 December 2008

about the flake rate of Obam votes v. Franken Votes ….in the Minnie
Prezzy……………………..The Sen……………………………….Difference
Ob : 1,573,354……. …..Franken:….1,211,000 @+/-……-362K/Ob
Mc:: 1,275,409 …………Coleman:…1,211,000 @+/-…@…-65K/Mc

b-b-b-but-t-t.. in excusing the loss of Marten in GA it was said that Ob’s coattails in Nov were “meaty and long” (I found that a little stomach churning) but thin and week in Dec.

So… ? guess that was propaganda?

LOL

31. BooHooHooMan - 5 December 2008

28

but but but maybe Barack will give HENRY ‘The Shocker”..

Get in the Box Henry. ‘Bout the only reason I’d go to Israel is if Kissinger was buried there, to THROW a stone at his grave. He wont be of course.
Arlington National with an Eternal Flame, prolly…

WherEV. Something Fitting AND Ironic, having secured his own gassing..

32. BooHooHooMan - 5 December 2008

Meating and Long in Nov.LOL.
thin and weak in Dec

Rich, as the saying goes:
“Well, it ONLY HAS BEEN 4 Weaks.
Wait while TIME improves it. “

LOL……….HOORAY!
November 4, 2008
……..DOA……………
December 4, 2008

33. marisacat - 5 December 2008

hmm Betty Page the pin up model had a heart attack.. in hospital somewhere in LA, CA

34. marisacat - 5 December 2008

omg. The firmament cannot hold. A schnauzer at NRO The Corner says this:

The economic panic had been slouching our way for a long, long time (I wish I’d paid attention to Prof. Roubini long before I did), as the increasing agitation of the markets over the last year was revealing so clearly.

35. Intermittent Bystander - 5 December 2008

28 – Talk about the stench, I mean smooch, of death. Now that’s meaty coattails.

BHHM – I’m confoozed. Are you saying Franken was so unappealing that only the Ob factor got him this far? Or that Al got screwed by insufficient Ob-team support?

Uh oh – rumor has it that Caroline’s interested.

36. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

a continuation of the neoconservative foreign policy of the Bush administration, given a human face.

The only face we’ll offer the world is the one in my little avatar.

37. marisacat - 5 December 2008

… and I have an awful feeling that Caroline really is interested.

Maybe if we ask nice, the Queen will take us back. Seems to be what we want… with some Christian Democrats running the Parliament.

38. Intermittent Bystander - 5 December 2008

37 – Valet service to the Capitol steps must be awfully tempting, eh? Beats stumping around the hinterland, making promises you’ll be unable to keep.

Funny you should mention the Queen. Was just reading Slate on the Canadian constitutional crisis.

39. Intermittent Bystander - 5 December 2008

36 – Your avatar cracks me up. I’m always trying to figure out where the hairdo begins and ends.

40. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

28 – well, they say vampires never die, and create new ones as they go along …

41. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008
42. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

WARREN ENDORSES HANNITY’S WARMONGERING

Last night, on Fox News, Sean Hannity insisted that United States needs to “take out” Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Warren said he agreed. Hannity asked, “Am I advocating something dark, evil or something righteous?” Warren responded, “Well, actually, the Bible says that evil cannot be negotiated with. It has to just be stopped…. In fact, that is the legitimate role of government. The Bible says that God puts government on earth to punish evildoers. Not good-doers. Evildoers.”

Butbutbutttttttt … oooooBAMA says we can work with Warren!!!!

43. BooHooHooMan - 5 December 2008

more from Mr VeeBeleebDat…on Hillary et al…

Those who take the phrase “team of rivals” literally do not understand the essence of the relationship between the president and the secretary of state. I know of no exception to the principle that secretaries of state are influential if and only if they are perceived as extensions of the president. Any other course weakens the president and marginalizes the secretary. The Beltway system of leak and innuendo will mercilessly seek to widen any even barely visible split.

In missed the movie / getting popcorn fashion:

Foreign governments will exploit the rift by pursuing alternative White House-State Department diplomacies.
{Who?Wha? Who dih–}

Foreign Governments?! LOL. Foreign Governments like Israel or Foreign Governments Like Iran and Nicaragua? With their Foreign Government Employees like Allen Dulles, Richard Helms, William Casey, and lesser stooges like Ollie North?
Or even, dare it be said, either one of YOU, Mr/MarauDem Secretary?

Carry on. Looks like there’ll be killings to be made
in Popcorn Futures among others…

Effective foreign policy and a significant role for the State Department in it require that the president and the secretary of state have a common vision of international order, overall strategy and tactical measures. Inevitable disagreements should be settled privately; indeed, the ability of the secretary to warn and question is in direct proportion to the discretion with which such queries are expressed.

Oh Great. Kissinger aprudz as another Nixon tape
is dripped out this week with Henry the Zealist
hardy harlotting about “Bombing the Bejeesus” out of Cambodia.
Nixon the Ill needn’t have been pushed to hard, but
Thanks to Henry “Peace-GMAFB-Prize-Winning” Henry
and his Patent on “Premptive” War,
Neutral Cambodia and “the docile passive” Cambodians got
.
Pol Pot.

Henry Kissinger is a War Criminal if there ever was one.
Obama, Hillary, and their “NEW”
National “Security” “Team” – Da Killas, no doubt –
have Kissinger’s –Henry Fucking Kissinger’s– Imprimvader

44. Intermittent Bystander - 5 December 2008

41 – Velvet Obama!

45. marisacat - 5 December 2008

”1-800-Bomb-Cambodia”. Should be the toll free tel. number for his consultancy

46. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

45 – or “1-800-EVL-WINS”.

47. marisacat - 5 December 2008

Wasn;t it Robertson who called for us to take out Chavez? Think he even bluntly used the word, “assassination”.

48. mattes - 5 December 2008

Barack Obama to make a major foreign policy speech at an Islamic capital-first 100 days

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/04/us/politics/04web-cooper.html?_r=4

Go ahead, make fun of me!

49. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

btw, happy end of Prohibition day … may we someday do the same with the rest of the mindless war on mind-altering substances.

When repeal came, it was not just with the support of those with a taste for alcohol, but also those who disliked and even hated it but could no longer ignore the dreadful consequences of a failed prohibition. They saw what most Americans still fail to see today: That a failed drug prohibition can cause greater harm than the drug it was intended to banish.

Consider the consequences of drug prohibition today: 500,000 people incarcerated in U.S. prisons and jails for nonviolent drug-law violations; 1.8 million drug arrests last year; tens of billions of taxpayer dollars expended annually to fund a drug war that 76% of Americans say has failed; millions now marked for life as former drug felons; many thousands dying each year from drug overdoses that have more to do with prohibitionist policies than the drugs themselves, and tens of thousands more needlessly infected with AIDS and Hepatitis C because those same policies undermine and block responsible public-health policies.

And look abroad. At Afghanistan, where a third or more of the national economy is both beneficiary and victim of the failed global drug prohibition regime. At Mexico, which makes Chicago under Al Capone look like a day in the park. And elsewhere in Latin America, where prohibition-related crime, violence and corruption undermine civil authority and public safety, and mindless drug eradication campaigns wreak environmental havoc.

All this, and much more, are the consequences not of drugs per se but of prohibitionist policies that have failed for too long and that can never succeed in an open society, given the lessons of history. Perhaps a totalitarian American could do better, but at what cost to our most fundamental values?

Why did our forebears wise up so quickly while Americans today still struggle with sorting out the consequences of drug misuse from those of drug prohibition?

50. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

47 – yup, but unlike Rick “Power of Positive Bullshit” Warren, Robertson is CARRAAAAAAZY!!!!

😈

51. marisacat - 5 December 2008

wow I did not know that WP took:

😈

I have to hunt around for the WP approved emoticons… I keep losing the list.

52. mattes - 5 December 2008

Obama’s ‘Palestinian friend’ laments catastrophic U.S. policy in Mideast
By Akiva Eldar

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1043689.html

53. marisacat - 5 December 2008

this is supposed to work:

🙄

54. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008
55. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

😆

56. mattes - 5 December 2008

Hey…how do I get my picture in the box??

57. Intermittent Bystander - 5 December 2008

49 – Great article. Do you know if that appeared in the print Wall Street Journal?

So this is the 75th anniversary. I wonder what columnists will have to say on the 100th?

Attempts advanced smiley . . . .

:mrgreen:

58. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

you have to set it up w/ your wordpress account.

59. Intermittent Bystander - 5 December 2008

56 – I think you have to be signed in to an account at WordPress if you want to set yourself up with a piccie. Try here?

http://wordpress.com/

60. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

57 – I don’t know … I don’t look at paper newspapers anymore.

61. mattes - 5 December 2008

“Restoring the Balance: A Middle East Strategy for the Next President”

http://www.forward.com/articles/14678/

😉

62. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

Surprise Health Bills Make People See Red

You might expect to pay more if you choose a doctor outside your insurer’s network. But what if you don’t know a doctor’s status — or are in no position to ask? The result can be a nasty surprise known as balance billing.

Insured patients are sometimes hit with unforeseen charges after emergencies, when they are taken to the closest hospital regardless of whether the facility accepts their insurance. Consumers also may be billed after visiting in-network hospitals if they received treatment from medical providers who work there but don’t participate in the same health plans. When that happens, insurers often pay part of the doctors’ fees, and the physicians bill patients for the difference. This is the practice known as balance billing, and it can leave consumers battling both the insurer and the medical provider to get the charge reduced.

Tom Pritchard, of Hartwick, N.Y., knew the orthopedic surgeon who operated on his hand last December was in his insurer’s network. So was the outpatient surgery center. But when a bill arrived weeks later, he got a surprise: The anesthesiologist didn’t accept his health plan. After Mr. Pritchard’s plan paid the specialist at its out-of-network rate, the anesthesiology practice asked the 57-year-old retiree to pony up the remaining $580.

So far, Mr. Pritchard says he has refused to pay, because he’s upset no one warned him or gave him a chance to request an in-network doctor. “It never occurred to me to ask” about the anesthesiologist, he says. “Why would I?”

A growing number of state regulators are moving to crack down on balance billing. Mr. Pritchard testified in October at a public hearing held by the New York State Insurance Department, which is drafting proposed regulations that could force more disclosure by medical providers and insurers and shield consumers from unexpected charges. California regulators recently made it illegal for people covered by health-maintenance organizations to be balance-billed for out-of-network emergency services. And late last year Illinois put out a bulletin that protects many consumers from balance bills in certain situations if they make a “good faith” effort to use in-network doctors.

63. Intermittent Bystander - 5 December 2008

I just have to note that the “LIMITED EDITION” gold seal on the official Barackappucino cup looks an awful lot like a beercap. This is cognitively dissonant design.

64. BooHooHooMan - 5 December 2008

35
Are you saying Franken was so unappealing that only the Ob factor got him this far? Or that Al got screwed by insufficient Ob-team support? -IB

IB, the latter ,IMO
I’m not really even approaching it from a critique of Franken’s own pros/cons..More an Ob privation on these:
::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
@300G OB margin in an “Historic” campaign to
bring the Change-ie-/ New…

and Stuart Smally don’t rate?
::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
Stikes me as funny, after all Obam’s riffs
on Shrubs “Ownership Society” :

“Yeh, President Bush means you’re on your own-”
was Obams practised punchline, the laughs and snare drum on cue.

Franken, not like he’s noted for a sense of humor or nuttin’,
was apparently LOST on THE JOKE.

I also think the pool of available votes to mobilize for Franken was well in excess of the nums I posited above. Yet some of it is from my own assumptions…My still-serviceable-antennae in Swing States , Minnesote they are not , Oh Indiana NC PA – I know PA cold , personally I thought it would be closer but heard only bits of similar following anecdotes in Pa , wrote it off as typical campaign shit,

but a few good friends in OH, IN, NC …
(.Still Dem’in It types… good people actually,
not lookin for / or to put a leg up,
just gobsmacked now over appointments now though..)
Anyways,- one who worked OH another in Indiana and another in NC got my attention , given their locale– when telegrousing
about “The Noobs” and “Campaign Tourists” – LOL- who were “poppin the champagne”,
working on Transition resumes at least a week out …
All three experienced the same thing , were appalled while wondering if perhaps the problem was with THEM,
that THEY , Eeek! – had morphed into
the Older Asshole of Quadrennial Campaigns®.
Not-so-jokingly, I assured my friends THEY DID.
LOL.

That said, the campaign crowd I used to run with are older, seasoned GOTV, older than me, go back to Gene McCarthy, and in this cycle certainly would have taken every Dem vote out of a house..- though not so sure WHY- LOL..
Next one??? I seriously think 2 out of the three have had their fill.
Maybe the new OBots will step up.

All of this is anecdotal, no credible contacts I know personally in Minnesota, but numbers like a 300K D margin for starters say it was prolly the case there too…
That more Could.Have.Been.Done.®
if not for the PHENOM of THE ONE.

65. Intermittent Bystander - 5 December 2008

mattes at 52 – Thanks for Khalidi profile and interview.

Khalidi, considered the successor to Prof. Edward Said among the Palestinian intelligentsia, studied and taught for 12 years, until 1983, at the American University of Beirut and the Institute for Palestinian Studies there. While he did maintain connections with foreign reporters, he was never a PLO spokesman. Later on, between the Madrid summit in late 1991 and the Oslo Accords in September 1993, Faisal Husseini got Khalidi added as a consultant to the Palestinian delegation to the Madrid summit and to the bilateral talks with the Israeli team, headed by Elyakim Rubinstein. That was when Khalidi formed his opinion of the coordinator – the U.S. mediator Dennis Ross, who is one of Obama’s advisors on foreign affairs. Khalidi alludes to him when he says in the interview that he hopes the new president will not bring back the same people who contributed to the failure of the peace process here. Nor was Khalidi thrilled to hear that Obama has appointed Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State. Clinton’s courting of Israel during the darkest days of the intifada made her a darling of the Jewish community and distanced her from the Palestinian community.

Obama’s campaign went on the counterattack against McCain-Palin: This is yet another attempt, they said, to recycle controversy and divert public attention from the fact that McCain supports Bush’s economic policies. Obama’s spokesman suggested that instead of berating the media’s supposed double standards, McCain ought to explain why, during the time he was chairman of the International Republican Institute, for years it helped fund the Center for Palestine Research and Studies, an organization that sponsored some of Khalidi’s lectures and published some of his work.

Khalidi, who wanted the black Democratic candidate to win, kept his head down and avoided the media. As the son of a political family, he is adept at swimming in such murky waters. His family tree in Jerusalem on his father’s side dates back at least to the 15th century. He says it’s quite likely that some of his ancestors, who were Chief Judges in Cairo during the Mameluke period, are buried in the Muslim cemetery in the Mamila area (the designated site of the new Museum of Tolerance). His uncle was the mayor of Jerusalem from 1935 to 1937, until he was deposed by the British Mandate authorities and exiled to the Seychelles. In the 1950s, the uncle was appointed foreign minister of Jordan and, for a brief time, also served as prime minister under King Hussein.

Well, as ol’ King Henry the serial monogamist pointed out, hope saith the holly, evergreen.

BHHM at 63 – Thanks for the explanation. I didn’t follow Franken’s run at all (find him kinda repulsive, for some reason, whatever his politico-comedic merits) and appreciate the clarification.

“The Noobs” and “Campaign Tourists” – LOL- who were “poppin the champagne”, working on Transition resumes at least a week out …

Reckon Franken himself must have seemed a boring old fart to the youngsters. Especially the most starry-eyed.

One “guess who” deserves another:

Earlier this week, the talk show host announced she will tape her inauguration week show in the nation’s capital, and has rented the Kennedy Center’s lush Opera House – which seats roughly 2,300 — to serve as her studio.

“There are not even words to talk about what this night means,” [guess who] said of Obama’s inauguration. “Everybody keeps using the word historic — there’s never been a night like this on the planet earth… Nothing can compare to this.”

(Link.)

66. BooHooHooMan - 5 December 2008

I’m working on succinct .. a few part post will follow..
kinda the Past Year in Review

Primaries.

Hillary fer sure.
Barackowa.
Hillaryshire..
Bill.
Barackolina.
Barackadooper Tuesday.
Pantsuit on Fire.
Holy KlanMama! Hillary?
Not “Enough”. *
Barack-Lock.

edface 😳

Car bomb kills 20 in northwest Pakistan’s Peshawar
SLIDESHOW
Previous Next

Wounded Pakistanis lie in a local hospital after an explosion in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Friday, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad)
Wounded Pakistanis lie in a local hospital after an explosion in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Friday, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad) (Mohammad Sajjad – AP)

A Pakistani boy, who lost his brother during an explosion, cries at his shop after a blast in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Friday, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad)
A Pakistani boy, who lost his brother during an explosion, cries at his shop after a blast in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Friday, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad) (Mohammad Sajjad – AP)

Pakistani people are seen next to a building on fire at the site of an explosion in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Friday, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad)
Pakistani people are seen next to a building on fire at the site of an explosion in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Friday, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad) (Mohammad Sajjad – AP)

Pakistani wounded men are seen in a local hospital after an explosion in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Friday, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad)
Pakistani wounded men are seen in a local hospital after an explosion in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Friday, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad) (Mohammad Sajjad – AP)

Pakistani wounded men receive treatment by doctors in a local hospital after an explosion in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Friday, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad)
Pakistani wounded men receive treatment by doctors in a local hospital after an explosion in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Friday, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad) (Mohammad Sajjad – AP)

Wounded Pakistanis lie in a local hospital after an explosion in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad)
Wounded Pakistanis lie in a local hospital after an explosion in Peshawar, Pakistan, Friday, Dec. 5, 2008. A car bomb devastated a busy street in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar, killing at least 18 people and injuring dozens more. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad) (Mohammad Sajjad – AP)

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There have been more than 30 suspected U.S. missile strikes since August, including one on Friday in the North Waziristan region, part of Pakistan’s wild tribal belt viewed as possible hiding place for Osama bin Laden.

Three Pakistani intelligence

67. BooHooHooMan - 5 December 2008

Just when it was all goig so well.

68. BooHooHooMan - 5 December 2008

In the same article that tabs

There have been more than 30 suspected U.S. missile strikes since August, including one on Friday in the North Waziristan region, part of Pakistan’s wild tribal belt viewed as possible hiding place for Osama bin Laden.

it plutters out this WTF non sequitor at the end

The United States is seeking to calm tension between Pakistan and India, nuclear-armed neighbors who have fought three wars, in part to keep Islamabad remains focused on fighting militants in the northwest.

redface 😳
😳
:oops:bama

69. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

from my fair city:

ACLU files civil rights complaint over I-94 project

The ACLU of Wisconsin today requested a federal investigation of the Wisconsin Department ofTransportation for violating civil rights laws when it decided to expand I-94.

In a complaint filed with Offices for Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration, the ACLU objected to WisDOT’s plans to widen I-94, build a new interchange at Drexel Ave., and close much of the interchange at 27th St. and I-894.

TheACLU is requesting that the government investigate WisDOT, stop the widening of I-94, and prevent construction of the Drexel Interchange – especially if the 27th St. Interchange is closed.

“WisDOT’s own environmental impact statement shows that building the Drexel Interchange is likely to hurt development in the city of Milwaukee – the state’s only majority-minority city -while it helps development in non-diverse suburbs,” noted Karyn Rotker, senior staff attorney for the ACLU of Wisconsin.

Rotker added that the disparities will worsen with closure of the 27th St. Interchange. “Title VI of the Civil Rights Act makes it clear that agencies can’t take actions that have a discriminatory effect on communities of color – even if the discrimination isn’tintentional.”

There are similar problems with spending hundreds of millions of dollars to add lanes to I-94, added ACLU of Wisconsin Executive Director Chris Ahmuty. “WisDOT has said adding the lanes is going to have only a minimal effect on travel times – and that not adding lanes could increase the market for development closer to downtown Milwaukee, thus helping city residents,most of whom are persons of color.”

WisDOT, however, rejected that approach. The ACLU complaint also asserts that expanding highways without moving forward on public transportation projects has a discriminatory effect on communities of color, who are disproportionately dependent on public transit.

“In a time of limited resources, WisDOT needs to ensure that it isn’t increasing the disparities between those with access to cars and transit dependent persons. But that’s what this plan does. Instead, WisDOT needs to ensure that a fair share of the benefits of its transportation programs are going to communities of color – who willbe much more likely to benefit from increased transit access than from the bigger highway WisDOT wants to build.”

70. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

No Mob Veto ad in NY Times is baloney

But the LDS and representatives of the Catholic Church (also a sponsor of the ad) are, in some respects, America’s version of Islamic extremists, by their attempts to impose their religious views on others. Their enormous wealth and use of religious doctrine coercively are weapons, not merely a shield.

When five Supreme Court justices, all Catholics (Chief Justice Roberts and Justices Scalia, Thomas, Kennedy and Alito) in the 5-4 Gonzales v. Carhart (2007) decision, side with a papal edict and deny women their reproductive rights, its time to stop kidding ourselves that religion isn’t dangerous. As the Surgeon General would warn, “religion is harmful to individual rights.”

I am equally troubled by Gordon Gaddy, president of the Interfaith Alliance, letting the signatories of the ad off so easy when he said in a press release today (Dec. 5) that: “I agree with the signers of the ad that they have every right to their opinion. ” My problem is the term “right to their opinion.” Opinion yes, but throw their considerable weight around with the purpose of denying people their rights — NO. At least not if there is any such thing as fundamental rights that should not be subject to public whim.

My point simply is this. We humanists, atheists and freethinkers are in a cultural war as is obvious from public ads or posters by the American Humanist Association (”Why believe in a god? …”), Freedom From Religion Foundation, American Atheists and others. We are fighting for more than a place at the table (i.e., equality), we are fight for fundamental rights — religious rights, gay rights, reproductive rights — you name it.

Rather than sit idly on the side, we should engage religious intolerants in the public square with our message for human rights. And then engage again and again — until the day we are free, free at last.

71. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008
72. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008

A New Approach to Drugs Would Save New York Hundreds of Millions of Dollars

While New York reels from the most severe budget crisis since the Great Depression, Gov. David A. Paterson and the legislature are scrambling to close ever-expanding deficits. “We’re not going to get out of this quagmire we’ve built until we reduce our spending,” said the governor during a Nov. 12 press conference.

Precisely. So let’s stop spending over $500 million every year on ineffective and wasteful policies like the Rockefeller Drug Laws. The Rockefeller Drug Laws represent not just bad, expensive policy, but a misguided and ineffective regime for addressing drug use and addiction — health issues, not criminal issues. Imagine if we incarcerated people for being addicted to cigarettes or for having diabetes.

Passed in 1973, the Rockefeller Drug Laws mandate harsh, mandatory minimum prison terms for even low-level drug offenses; people convicted of first- and second-time drug offenses often receive eight to 20 years in prison. The laws are marked by shocking, inexcusable racial disparities — more than 90 percent of the people incarcerated under the Rockefeller Drug Laws are black or Latino, even though whites use and sell illegal drugs at approximately equal, and often higher, rates.

Contrary to their stated purpose, these laws do little to reduce the availability of drugs or drug use in New York. They did not stop the crack epidemic of the 1980s. They are completely incapable of stemming the accidental drug overdose epidemic hitting New York City and Long Island today. And they have turned the Department of Corrections into the largest, most costly and ineffective treatment provider in the state.

The state spends hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars every year on policies that both criminal justice and public health experts — as well as the majority of New Yorkers, according to the polls — say don’t work. It costs over $35,000 a year to keep someone in prison. When policing and court costs are factored in, that number rises to nearly $50,000. The governor and legislature should do the math: there are nearly 14,000 people incarcerated under these laws. Prisons constitute the most ineffective and expensive mechanism to address drug abuse. Meanwhile, spending on community-based drug treatment is pitifully low, and New York’s treatment system faces even further cuts in this economic crisis, even though community-based treatment is a fraction of the cost and demonstrably more effective than incarceration.

73. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 December 2008
74. marisacat - 5 December 2008

Madman .. oen of yours out of Moderation… the Seeing Red one…

75. mattes - 5 December 2008

Feingold on Bill Moyers.

76. Intermittent Bystander - 6 December 2008

73 – Smartly and sweetly done.

77. marisacat - 6 December 2008

69

is likely to hurt development in the city of Milwaukee – the state’s only majority-minority city -while it helps development in non-diverse suburbs,” — Madman

what an interesting law suit.. plus I did not realise that Milwaukee was majority minority…

78. marisacat - 6 December 2008

Speaking of Minnesota… 🙄

But a missing envelope containing 131 ballots from Minneapolis will stall the final verdict with state officials extending the deadline for it to be found to December 16.

Cindy Reichert, the director of Minneapolis elections, said that she was not sure where the envelope had gone but that her staff were “in the process of looking under everything”. Mr Franken’s campaign is demanding that every person, including cleaners who worked at the precinct on election day, be interviewed while “a systematic forensic search” is conducted of the polling station and vehicles used to transport ballots.

Here, we just dump them in the bay then look surprised when boxes of votes float to shore… 😈

79. marisacat - 6 December 2008

I cannot wait for the movie

At first sight, the man and three women who entered the Harry Winston store in Paris resembled the sophisticated international clientele who frequent this most exclusive of jewellers. But staff soon realised something was amiss – the women were really men in wigs and dresses and all four were holding guns.

They herded the 15 or so staff and customers into a corner – hitting some over the head – then loaded necklaces, brooches, watches and other valuables into their bags and made off with a haul valued at €85 million (£74 million). The biggest robbery in French history, and the second-biggest jewellery theft in Europe, took only 13 minutes.

French police, who arrived 15 minutes later, said that Harry Winston, the self-proclaimed king of diamonds and supplier to monarchs, aristocrats and film stars, had fallen victim to a highly professional and well informed gang. ::snip::

It says the same shop on Avenue Montaigne was hit last year as well, for 10 m Euro…

80. marisacat - 6 December 2008

LOL the overnight host on KGO is a sometimes tart tongued woman.. who notes that surely surely Caroline will be Sen Kennedy rather than Senator Schlossberg.

Yup…………………………. 🙄

81. marisacat - 6 December 2008

oh I meant to add, I thought IB’s “valet service” to the steps of the Hill was on target.

And how. I mean, why schlepp if you don’t have to. Noblesse sans oblige… 😆

82. sean marsh - 6 December 2008

that’s a great ad, madman. hopefully people will figure out that shifting public opinion has to happen consistently, not just in election cycles.

83. marisacat - 6 December 2008

new post

LINK

…………. 😈 …………….


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