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Up on the roof… 5 February 2010

Posted by marisacat in 2010 Mid Terms, 2012 Re Election, Cuba, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.

Colina watches as his birds take off Photograph: J Angel Gil Lema

From a series at the Guardian, 3 photographers in Havana. Several photos of a man who raises racing pigeons, the rooftop coop so evocative of NYC of a certain time.   Remnants of Revolutionary era billboards and signs from another photog… then, some black and white street scenes.


Sweet… and I am suitably touched.

Time to Hit the Road Obama?

President Obama Laments Not Engaging More with Everyday Americans


WASHINGTON, Feb. 5, 2010— 

President Obama has made no secret of the fact that one of the toughest adjustments of assuming the presidency is what he calls living inside the “bubble.” 

“I can’t just do things on the spur of the moment,” he told a group of ninth graders at a high school in Northern Virginia last September. “That’s actually the toughest thing about being president, because you want to just be able to interact with people normally, right?” 

For Obama personally, the confines of the White House have meant not being able to take a stroll around the neighborhood, go out to a spontaneous dinner or play a pickup game of basketball. 

But recently Obama has admitted that the presidential bubble has hampered his ability to promote a policy agenda and to connect with everyday Americans.  snip

I feel just so…………. everyday… Don’t you?



1. catnip - 5 February 2010

So…he’s an every OTHER day…or a once a week American?

You know – the guy has done one zillion trillion media appearances since he showed up in DC. If he’s not connecting, getting out there and pounding the pavement is not going to help. Maybe if he actually started acting like he gave a damn about those “everyday” people, the “bubble” thing wouldn’t be an issue.

marisacat - 5 February 2010


I think the whole thing needs some stalinist chorus… to fill in the awkward empty spaces in the conversation Ob tries so hard to have with the everydays

I am so ORDINARY! I am! I know we told you I was Hawai’ian and Indonesian and Chicagoan……. and whatever else… but let me be the first to tell you: I am ORDINARY. (sung in B flat, lentement)

Then he can do the “I love you too” bullshit.

And go out to the bullet proof limo squad and high tail it back to DC.


BTW, I just read that Pauxahtenawney Phil got it wrong. The poor thing said spring soon or whatever means winter is over when he popped out the other day.

BooHooHooMan - 5 February 2010

Yeh. Fuck that burrowed in varmint who only comes out of his hole to flash his grin and back he goes.

Oh yeh, And the Groundhog, too
Add Phil to my shit list along with Ob.

We are expecting high winds and up to two feet of heavy, wet snow. My neighbor has a huge beautiful old tree but half dead that arches out over the front corners of both our old houses. If it goes, it’ll take a chunk out of both our places.

marisacat - 5 February 2010

My neighbor has a huge beautiful old tree but half dead that arches out over the front corners of both our old houses. If it goes, it’ll take a chunk out of both our places.

oh one of those trees, absolutely dead in the roots and trunk, killed a 2 year old in a car here last week………..

ts - 5 February 2010

I was walking the dog after the storms a couple weeks ago and there was a truck with a perfectly rounded tree-sized furrow in the cab. Just parked on the street overnight, thank god. Nobody hurt. The eucalyptus trees around our house are not known for their durability.

ts - 5 February 2010

He’s ordinary, except for that I-can-order-the-CIA-to-kill-anyone-in-the-world-with-impunity thing.

catnip - 5 February 2010

Maybe he could go on a little town hall tour about that.

ts - 5 February 2010

Oh that would be classic. Put him on Dr. Phil and ask who the audience wants to kill most.

catnip - 5 February 2010

lol…and Dr Phil could ask him, ‘How’s that workin’ for you?’

2. catnip - 5 February 2010

The eurozone faces its most difficult test yet

I was watching Dylan Ratigan yesterday as the DOW was crashing and he was saying that what’s going on in Europe with Greece and Portugal is the result of money men using credit default swaps/hedges to bet on the failure of those 2 countries – thus actually helping to cause the failures. It made sense when he explained it anyway…

catnip - 5 February 2010

I see all of these international finance honchos flew all the way to the great white (very) north to have a little one day meeting. Hello? How about using GoToMeeting or Skype instead of wasting all of that money?

3. catnip - 5 February 2010

Moyers:”Two political parties, equal opportunity hypocrites.”

4. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 February 2010

Santa Fe Institute economist: one in four Americans is employed to guard the wealth of the rich

Here’s a fascinating profile on radical Santa Fe Institute economist Samuel Bowles, an empiricist who says his research doesn’t support the Chicago School efficient marketplace hypothesis. Instead, Bowles argues that the wealth inequality created by strict market economics creates inefficiencies because society has to devote so much effort to stopping the poor from expropriating the rich. He calls this “guard labor” and says that one in four Americans is employed to in the sector — labor that could otherwise be used to increase the nation’s wealth and progress.


The problem, Bowles argues, is that too much guard labor sustains “illegitimate inequalities,” creating a drag on the economy. All of the people in guard labor jobs could be doing something more productive with their time–perhaps starting their own businesses or helping to reduce the US trade deficit with China.

Guard labor supports what one might call the beat-down economy. Community Action’s Porter sees it all the time.

“We have based almost everything we have done on the idea that we always need a part of our workforce that is marginalized–that we can call this group into action at any time, pay them nothing and they will do anything that needs to be done,” she says.

More discouraging, perhaps, is the statistical fact that a person born into this workforce has little chance of rising beyond it.

marisacat - 5 February 2010

Endless fictions……….

5. marisacat - 5 February 2010

I jsut caught the tag end of NOW on PBS (I slept thru the evening and missed most of the Friday night political shows… which endlessly repeat thru the weekend, except for NOW, sadly) on the Stupak amendment.

They interviewed Stupak who is for overtuning Roe (with 2 possible departures coming up on the SC he may get that reality) and he called it the “Democrat Party”.

😆 Now 10 + years ago that could have made me mad. Such a tedious petty little R and RW move… and from a Democrat, supposedly. But of course he is a Pro Life Dem.

But now? Just laugh.

Cecile Richards made more sense on NOW than I have heard her make in years… Probably no way that Ann Richards daughter is not a plain spoken firebrand… but for the Love of the Party, her sort mostly hide it publicly.

We’ll go down with a whimper in public and a scream at home in a closet of our own making.

6. marisacat - 5 February 2010

Oh double ugh…

I dropped in on Five Thirty Eight… http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/

and what rides at the top?, from Nate himself!… sign the petition for Question Time.

Gah. Moving right along to ……….. whatever shrunken future we have.

7. BooHooHooMan - 6 February 2010

LOL…Edwards Aide blew off the North Carolina Judge demanding the original Edwardian Hardonian tape, copies etc…

Getting dicey. LOL – Like we’re not well PAST “dicey” already ..

Anyways, INSTEAD the Guy has turned a copy over to the FBI and retains the original in a safe deposit IN ATLANTA…LOL. Just blew off the NC state judge ..who found him in contempt, giving him till next Wednesday to comply or face sanctions, presumably being jailed till he “coughs up” … I get the feeling Young may get some intervening assistance between GA and the Federal bench on this.

Somebody has to be looking at indicting Edwards
for the CampaignFi followed…I dunno, at least by
globally televised human sacrifice.
And We Plebes Deserve the Spectacle, frankly. LOL.
And We’re about due, no? Either that or it’ll be the latest raging, has-been celebrity berzerker who went and murdered someone.
Or the next round of Shock and Awe.

It’s why I clipped my cable. I don’t see why I should have to pay for all the extraneous crap when with a 4 or 5 station dial you could get the Ejaculatory Politician Channel, The Shock and Awe Channel, The Celebrities Acting Badly and Semi Regularly Murdering Somebody Channel with the Buy This Shit / Home/ Martha / Rosewater /Scones and Oprah Channels all Combined into One New National Pastime Sports Network : CannibalismTV.

Our Stadia could still be used for fair weather groupthink.
But occasionaly you’d have those types of globally unifying events that one remembers for a lifetime and makes the heart soar.
You know, like the Edwards Sacrifice.

marisacat - 6 February 2010

wellllllllllll since I alwasy found Edwards to be two faced, in the extreme, I am enjoying his “fall”… and how broad based it is. We are spared St Eliz assisting the Dems in skrewing us over using “health care”.

Do I think many falls, when they finally come, have some orchestration.. yeah I surely do. We get the parade of Tiger and his kittens… but gambling and doings he foolishly carried out in LV at the Mansion, an exclusive part of…. iirc the Bellagio, most likely figure in.

And so on………..

8. marisacat - 6 February 2010

oh snicker…

[T]ake the past two weeks. Since Democrats lost the Massachusetts Senate race, Obama or his top advisers have suggested all of the following: breaking the bill into smaller parts, keeping it together in one comprehensive package, putting it at the back of legislative line and needing to “punch it through” Congress, as Obama himself said Tuesday. [a plan a day! keeps ever having a bill away! ]

The latest comment came during a Thursday fundraiser when Obama described the “next step” as sitting down with Republicans, Democrats and health care experts. “Let’s just go through these bills — their ideas, our ideas — let’s walk through them in a methodical way so that the American people can see and compare what makes the most sense,” Obama said, describing a process that could take weeks, if not longer.

He first floated the idea during his State of the Union speech almost three weeks ago, but top congressional aides in both parties said Friday that they still have no idea what the president was talking about.

Even the White House struggled to explain what Obama had in mind. On Friday, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said there was no meeting on the schedule. [oh… as if he would know anything!, LOL – Mcat]

At the same fundraiser, Obama seemed to acknowledge for the first time that Congress may well decide to scrap health care altogether – an admission that blunted his repeated and emphatic vows to finish the job. ….

Read more: LINK


“I’m not sure where the White House is right now,” said Ralph G. Neas, a longtime progressive activist who is now the head of the National Coalition on Health Care. “But I do believe that given everything that has happened, the time has come for more forceful presidential leadership. That is the only way to close the deal. That kind of leadership involves providing more precise guidance to Congress and a clear case to the American people on how this benefits families. The president must step up and wield the power of his office.” …

Ralph! Ralph? Won’t be happening!

O f course a few years ago Ralph Neas kept the fiction going that the Dems, much less the Dems on the Judiciary Cmte might do something anything about Roberts and later Alito.


9. Madman in the Marketplace - 6 February 2010

LOL … Barry just gave clueless Tim Kaine credit for the online and field organizations that Dean built at the DNC meeting.

marisacat - 6 February 2010

Well Dean was an idiot… AND he helped them spend two cycles electing Pro Life Dems. He was ridiculous last night on NOW when asked about that. (the whole show was on Stupak Amendment and abortion, the Dems abandoning women and so on)

His excse, which I have heard from him before, is that they focused on Dems who supported All the Rest of the Dem theocracy. Good people.

Oh puhleese… I don’t bohter anymore but in 2004 (he was nto Chair then) and in 2006 (he surely was) and 2008 (he still was) I paid a lot of attention to the House and senate races.

it was utter mendacity, in the living flesh of the people they selected, backed, promoted, covered for… etc.

10. catnip - 6 February 2010

BILL MOYERS: Everybody’s been talking about that Republican retreat last weekend, where President Obama engaged his opponents in a give and take. But what you may not know is that it was organized by something called the Congressional Institute. Nice highfalutin civic bunch, you might deduce from its name. Turns out the Congressional Institute is funded by corporate contributions and run by top Republican lobbyists. There are fourteen members on its board–twelve are registered lobbyists. And the contributors to the Congressional Institute read like a who’s who of corporate America. Among its benefactors have been General Motors, Lockheed Martin, Time Warner, UPS. The institute’s chairman lobbies for among others, Goldman Sachs, B.P., Health Net and AHIP. That’s the trade group for the health insurance industry that fought tooth and nail against the public option and brought the White House to its knees.

Now if any Democrats out there are gloating over this, I’m not finished. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee also had a cozy little retreat last weekend at a Ritz-Carlton resort in Miami Beach, which boasts “sumptuous marble baths,” a spa, and a two million dollar art collection. The website Politico.com reports that in addition to prominent Democratic senators there were plenty of representatives from industries the Democrats regularly attack when they wear their populist hat: the American Bankers Association, the tobacco giant Altria, the oil company Marathon, several drug manufacturers, and the defense contractor Lockheed Martin, as well as Heather and Tony Podesta — two of the biggest corporate spear carriers on K Street and two of the biggest Democrats in town. Very, very intimate. And very, very politically incestuous.

One final note: after the Supreme Court handed down its decision two weeks ago, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the leader of Senate Republicans, praised it from the senate floor. He dismissed the notion that the decision might allow a flood of foreign money to influence our elections. Now we learn from TalkingPointsMemo.com that Senator McConnell has received substantial funds from a subsidiary of a big foreign defense contractor that’s currently being investigated by the Justice Department for bribery. Senator McConnell has been quite good to that subsidiary — this year alone he’s requested seventeen million dollars in earmarks for its Louisville facility. Yes, the sun, and the dollar signs, shine bright in Senator McConnell’s old Kentucky home.

Let’s face it, two political parties; equal opportunity hypocrites.

11. catnip - 6 February 2010

Sunday schmoozers and snoozers:

ABC’s “This Week” — Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner.


CBS’ “Face the Nation” — NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.


NBC’s “Meet the Press” — John Brennan, President Barack Obama’s top counterterrorism adviser; former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson; former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan; Ed Gillespie, former Bush White House counselor; Dee Dee Myers, former press secretary for President Bill Clinton.


CNN’s “State of the Union” — Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton


“Fox News Sunday” — Former Gov. Sarah Palin, R-Alaska; Mark Skoda, a talk radio host who helped organize the National Tea Party Convention in Nashville, Tenn.

12. catnip - 6 February 2010
13. mattes - 6 February 2010

Went to the link and found this one too:


….god, I miss my dogs.

catnip - 6 February 2010

That’s quite the pair!

14. CSTAR - 6 February 2010

On Moyers last night, I thought Lawrence Lessig did an extremely poor job vis-a-vis Nick Gillespie on the supreme court coporate funding decision. For one thing, Lessig let Gillespie get away with the statement “Corporations are associations of people”. They are not. Corporations are legal abstractions; they have finances, balance sheets, can acquire property, hire and fire, but they are not required to be associated to anybody. That’s one of the main points of corporations. Basically a mailbox and your done. He really waffled I think.

marisacat - 6 February 2010

Lesig has completely fallen apart compared to whatever he might have been. For one he actualy fell in love iwth obama… and I don’t mean it as allegory. he can be jaw dropping on Obama.

THEN he abandoned legal issues to do with the internet… THEN he decided that Congress and the people who serve are a great institution of public service but, my oh my, they are so fearfully vexed by all the money in politics, by the big bad corps and special interests… that the good people lose their way.

SO to cover for love of Obama and abandoning legal issues of the internet he formed a useless org, Save Congress or some such slop.

He has become utterly appalling. IF he were to face anything honestly, anythign at all, he would have to face the reaity that Ob is neither Jesus nor John the Baptist.

As I see it. he seemed a stronger prson years ago… meaning around the first half of this decade, but it all drained a way.

Madman in the Marketplace - 6 February 2010

seems to happen to a lot of people who show promise. They get the idea that they can “change the system from within” and then the great whittling to nothing sets in.

marisacat - 6 February 2010

he REALLY fell apart.

15. marisacat - 6 February 2010

In case anyone is interested, Sully links to the Fox site, they posted, online, the full monty between Stewart and O’Reilly, sans edits… and apparently edited out some of his best zingers for Tee Vee….

It is “How Fox edits” posted at 3:03 pm


I am knee deep in Lidia Bastianich cooking show on PBS, so will go listen when I get a fresh connection on dial up…


16. mattes - 6 February 2010

Blair says Israelis were in on pre-war planning

The most unforgivable, outrageous and bizarre moment of the day occurred when Blair, for some inexplicable reason, volunteered the following revelation about his all-important meeting with George W Bush in Crawford, Texas, back in April 2002:

“As I recall that discussion, it was less to do with specifics about what we were going to do on Iraq or, indeed, the Middle East, because the Israel issue was a big, big issue at the time. I think, in fact, I remember, actually, there may have been conversations that we had even with Israelis, the two of us, whilst we were there. So that was a major part of all this.”

[mondoweiss LINK ]

Interesting comments, too:

DICKERSON3870 February 6, 2010 at 12:55 pm

Abdul-Karim Khan
06 February 2010 at 05:25

Just before the American invasion of Iraq, the Israeli Prime Minister Sharon had met President Bush in D.C. While coming out of the meeting, Sharon casually told the reporters that Saddam must (or has to) go. I did not understand his comment at the time because the more immediate problems was between Arafat and Sharon. It was after the invasion started I understood what Sharon meant.

….when it rains it pours…or is it snows now?

marisacat - 6 February 2010

Blair pushed Iran war during his testimony the past week in London. Push replay.

They all want war.

mattes - 6 February 2010

They all have their playbook.

17. marisacat - 6 February 2010



……………….. 😯

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