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Wabbit 17 February 2011

Posted by marisacat in Divertissements.

People gather at Yuyuan Gardens to celebrate the Lantern Festival as the end of the Chinese New Year in Shanghai

People gather at Yuyuan Gardens to celebrate the Lantern Festival as the end of the Chinese New Year in Shanghai      [AP]



1. marisacat - 17 February 2011


Ian Henderson

Comrade Laleh Khalili wrote me this (I cite with her permission):

“who ran the Bahraini Mukhabarat was also involved in atrocities against the Mau Mau in Kenya; his book Man Hunt in Kenya is a shockingly racist

Posted by As’ad AbuKhalil at 3:34 PM

2. brinn - 17 February 2011

Oh, fucking, GOODIE!

And this is just part one….

Have I mentioned in the last 10 minutes how sick I am of this country?

3. Madman in the Marketplace - 17 February 2011

re: this from the last thread.

At this point, the largest union in the state, the teachers union (WEAC) had enough.

I feel I should point out that WEAC are the ass-kissing toadie union who’ve been eager to cooperate with the Republicans. The big cities have their own local teacher unions.

marisacat - 17 February 2011

well still, here’s hoping, nevertheless….

I don’t know one teacher union from another in Cali, but out here, for all the yealling and scrreaming SEIU did, I wonder if they benefitted the membership at all.

Such a shame, all sides…

Madman in the Marketplace - 17 February 2011

I take WEAC jumping on board as a good sign … they knew they were getting left behind.

ts - 17 February 2011

IMO the state and especially federal unions are useless at best, complicit at worst.

ts - 17 February 2011

Was talking to a manager in the UC system today – as liberal as they come. Hates his union.

He wished they would have just accepted a small number of layoffs at the beginning of the budget mess, rather than fighting it and ending up having to take the furloughs, and then fighting the furloughs so that they cost the state more than the money they saved.

In the end, he’s going to have his budget slashed and will have to lay off twice as many people as in the beginning.

marisacat - 18 February 2011

fighting the furloughs

as I recall the courts sided with Arnold. In Cali, in my opinion, the public service unions and whatever membership managed to get on camera, have generally been stupid.

4. Madman in the Marketplace - 17 February 2011

Secy of State Clinton espouses pure cognitive dissonance strategy

Clinton tried to reconcile the US administration’s support for the internet as a motor for change in the Middle East, China and elsewhere with its fury over WikiLeaks. She said: “Liberty and security. Transparency and confidentiality. Freedom of expression and tolerance. There are times when these principles will raise tensions and pose challenges, but we do not have to choose among them. And we shouldn’t. Together they comprise the foundation of a free and open internet.”

(((Who the heck wrote that amazing paragraph?! I’d like to shake that guy’s hand! He’s found some incredible diplomatic rhetorical middle-ground between honesty and dishonesty. It’s like a marriage which is firmly founded on a “challenging tension” of chastity and adultery. And, well, to tell the truth, that’s been known to work out — somehow. I mean — what else can she possibly say? Think about it.)))

She added that the US backed internet freedom and encouraged other countries to do the same: “Leaders worldwide have a choice to make. They can let the internet in their countries flourish, and take the risk that the freedoms it enables will lead to a greater demand for political rights. Or they can constrict the internet, choke the freedoms it naturally sustains—and risk losing all the economic and social benefits that come from a networked society.”

(((Social benefits maybe — but ECONOMIC benefits? Where? To whom? The US, inventor of the Internet, is still offering advice on how to prosper? If it’s money you want, then the Chinese Internet Firewall model is the only one with some proven cash-in capacity. The Internet per se looks more and more like a net loss to capitalism.)))

5. Madman in the Marketplace - 17 February 2011

RE: Brinn’s link to Taibbi in the last thread … I bet he had no idea that those years in Moscow covering the Oligarchs would give him vital training when he returned to the states.

6. Madman in the Marketplace - 17 February 2011
catnip - 17 February 2011

The “Cheese Curtain”. 🙂

If they head any further north and try to cross the border, I’ll charge them $10 each just to get in.

Madman in the Marketplace - 18 February 2011

could they barter their entry, perhaps with cheese wheels or some of our fine local craft beers? Usinger sausages maybe?

7. Madman in the Marketplace - 17 February 2011
ts - 17 February 2011

yeah, but one of em went back to texas and they passed the bill anyway. the bill ended up getting thrown out by the supreme court. political kabuki at its finest. they don’t care any more about the unions than the GOP does, they just have to put on a show before they go back and pass it anyway.

marisacat - 18 February 2011

they don’t care any more about the unions than the GOP does

very true… and the unions just go on turning out the vote for the Dems. To the degree they have any influence at all.

Madman in the Marketplace - 18 February 2011

oh, very true, but watching this kabuki is a nice change anyway … the one time when the natural tendency of the Donk to turn tail and run is a good thing.

8. catnip - 17 February 2011


Obama: Wisconsin budget fight seems like ‘an assault on unions’

9. ts - 17 February 2011
10. marisacat - 18 February 2011


A Pakistani judge orders the arrest of the driver of the embassy car… and John Kerry burned in effigy at a protest over the Davis mess… (not that any of it may mean much, overall)

Moving right along… as Pakistan hurtles toward being the largest, most populous muslim country in the world (to surpass Indonesia, soon).

I mean, do we do things right or what?

11. marisacat - 18 February 2011

hmm Angry Arab:

Aljazeera Arabic: why the cover up of the massacre in Bahrain (why democracy is not permitted in the Gulf)

The meeting of the GCC today to support Bahraini repression and oppression was clear. The GCC (a tool created by the US) intended to prevent democracy from arriving to an Arab gulf country.

I do believe that the Qatari government deliberately protected the Bahraini monarchy through its lousy coverage of the repression in Bahrain.

I just remembered the last conversation I had with the Emir of Qatar back in July: I asked him for the reasons why political parties can’t be formed in Qatar, and why societies dedicated to combating normalization between Qatar and Israel are not permitted in Qatar. I remember his words today (and now I know what he meant): he said that he can’t. That political development and progress in Qatar can’t be ahead of other political levels of developments in other Gulf countries.

I asked why: and he said that they just can’t be ahead, in political development. I guess that GCC countries disagree on many things but that they all agree on preventing democracy in their region. But: make no mistake about it. There is so much at stake–physically in terms of military and intelligence bases–to to allow for democracy in that part of the world.

I think that the US was prepared to deploy troops to support the Bahraini monarchy.

Posted by As’ad AbuKhalil at 4:58 PM

marisacat - 18 February 2011

hmm mmm via Business Insider

The odds of an Egypt or Tunisia-like revolution coming to the richer states in the Gulf have always seemed long.

But now Bahrain is happening, and the rest of the countries in the region are freaking out.

There are reports that the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council would intervene militarily if it appeared as though the Bahrain regime would fall.

And check out what a Saudi prince [it’s Prince Talal, btw – Mcat] told the BBC: “Unless problems facing Saudi Arabia are solved, what happened and is still happening in some Arab countries, including Bahrain, could spread to Saudi Arabia, even worse.”

For people living under dictatorship for years this is obviously exhilarating and exciting. For Israel and the US that love the stability of the status quo, it’s terrifying.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/saudi-price-fears-uprising-in-saudi-arabia-2011-2

marisacat - 18 February 2011

hmm from the Mail and Guardian link above (an AFP report):

[L]ondon-based analyst Abdulwahab Badrakhan said “any change in a Gulf state will encourage change in others which is not acceptable to regimes amid a global and Arab environment conducive to change.”

“Gulf monarchies feel endangered by any protest demanding a change of regime or even a constitutional change because the regional situation, especially the stand-off with Iran, will justify not bowing to demands,” he said.

Badrakhan said Gulf states will “go too far to support the regime in Bahrain, the weak point in the region”, because of its Shi’ite majority and limited resources.

Analysts believe the predominance of Shi’ites in the protests reduces their chance of achieving their goals.

“Shi’ites in Bahrain should not place their legitimate demands within a sectarian framework but in a national formula … as this can take out [a perceived] Iranian factor in the protests,” Dakheel said.

Although the Bahraini protests can affect Shiites in the neighbouring oil-rich Eastern province of Saudi Arabia “it will not affect the stability of the Saudi political system,” he said. [ha ha Prince Talal may disagree — Mcat]

The director of the Far East and Gulf Military Analysis, Riyadh Qahwaji, said the sectarian factor does not favour the protests in Bahrain, adding that the army, which is loyal to the regime, is capable of facing demonstrators.

“The sectarian factor will not aid the Bahraini protests because they are seen from the Iranian angle,” Qahwaji said.

He said the Sunni-dominated Bahraini army is capable of facing the protests, unlike the case of Egypt and Tunisia, but Opec kingpin Saudi Arabia must step in in to provide substantial aid to Manama. – AFP

ts - 18 February 2011

From the Wiki on Prince Talal: An entrepreneur and international investor but without real political power within the House of Saud or in Saudi Arabia, he has amassed a fortune through investments in real estate and the stock market.

So in other words he’s a Saudi version of a Democrat.

marisacat - 18 February 2011

iirc he hangs out a lot in NYC

catnip - 18 February 2011

They won’t have that far to go. The US’ 5th fleet is based in Bahrain.

12. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 February 2011

Illinois can’t fetch Dems, lawyers say

The Wisconsin legislators on the lam cannot be touched by out-of-state police, according to veteran Wisconsin lawyers.

The attorneys agree that authority of Capitol Police and other local law enforcement ends at Beloit, meaning Illinois officers couldn’t help their Wisconsin brethren retrieve those Democrats who escaped if they wanted.

“Cops in other places can’t just pick people up and haul them across state lines,” said Rodney Cubbie, a former federal and Milwaukee County prosecutor. “You have to have some sort of court order or warrant.”

Raymond Dall’Osto, a criminal defense lawyer, agreed the Democrats would have a safe haven if they continue to hide out in Illinois.

Illinois police “could arrest if there is a crime, but what is the crime?” said Dall’Osto, a Democrat and former head of the local American Civil Liberties Union office. “They would have no legal right to arrest them right now.”

Dall’Osto said it’s even touchy for Capitol Police to nab a legislator in Wisconsin. Tracking a lawmaker down outside of the Capitol is a far cry from going to a lawmaker’s office and reminding him to get to the floor for a key vote, he said.

“It’s an unprecedented situation,” Dall’Osto said.

If ordered by the Legislature to arrest Democrats found roaming Wisconsin, the police would have to make a tough choice, Dall’Osto said.

“Would they act like the army in Egypt or the army in Bahrain?” Dall’Osto said.

Madman in the Marketplace - 18 February 2011

oh, and the official school closings spread to Milwaukee today, due to the growing sick-out.

ts - 18 February 2011

As doubtful as I am about the whole situation, I’m really rooting for them in WI.

Madman in the Marketplace - 18 February 2011

there is a dangerous tendency in this state to believe that the right aren’t as crazy as they are, that they can be reasoned with, and if nothing else comes out of this I hope it’s sinking in how radical they are.

I lived in CO when they ran that state into the ground w/ budget cuts and tax cuts … I hope people here will pull back from going down the same road.

I just wish they’d realized what Walker was before he got elected.

marisacat - 18 February 2011

Would they act like the army in Egypt or the army in Bahrain?” Dall’Osto said.

ooo I like that he tossed that in…

Madman in the Marketplace - 18 February 2011

me too

13. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 February 2011

School officials: Anticipated education cuts could be ‘devastating’

School officials fear anticipated cuts to K-12 education in Gov. Scott Walker’s budget proposal next week could have a “devastating” effect on public education — from up to 85 teacher layoffs in Janesville to a $17.5 million hole in Madison’s K-12 budget.

The Wisconsin Association of School Boards warned members this week that Walker is likely to announce a $900 million cut in general state school aids over two years to help close a $3.6 billion budget deficit, and prevent districts from raising property taxes to cover the losses.

Walker has proposed teachers and other public employees pay more for health insurance and increase contributions to pension plans, which he argues will offset cuts.

General school aids this year of $4.67 billion represent the largest chunk of state spending.

A $450 million cut next year, or 9.6 percent, would return state funding to 2002-03 levels. It would be the largest cut in the state’s history, according to Department of Public Instruction spokesman John Johnson.

“If this were the case it would be unprecedented and devastating,” Johnson said.

Apparently one of the big advantages of all this is it’s giving time for people to read and publicize what Walker and his party were trying to ram through very quickly, without committee hearings.

14. BooHooHooMan - 18 February 2011

Doesn’t this Trio’s picture speak volumes?

(from L – R)
The Smug Smirk,
Our Jerk,
and whasisname ~ Outta Work.

Floated with some lede about Abbas frontin whupset now over the latest Sacred Security Council doing~hoos.

Methinks conflabby Abby is not long for this world.
Not from us of course, never is, 😉 , but he’d be well advised to get his ass out of Ramallah.

15. marisacat - 18 February 2011

The Bahraini army is firing straight into people, using machine guns… (I just woke up so am catching up)

Both NYT’s Nicholas Kristoff and AP’s Hadeel Al-Shalchi are tweeting that the army in Abharain have started firing live ammo directly at protesters, who were marching towards a hospital, which housed other injured protesters.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/bahrain-is-firing-live-ammo-at-protesters-right-now-2011-2

yesterday it was spraying (and killing) with birdshot.. so they hve advanced.

Madman in the Marketplace - 18 February 2011

report on MSNBC said that many casualties coming in with headshots.

catnip - 18 February 2011

They’ve attacked the hospital:

Riot police attacked pro-reform protesters with tear gas and gunfire at a hospital compound in Bahrain’s capital on Friday.

The hospital is a triage centre in Manama that was housing most of the victims of an attack by riot police on Thursday of a protest camp in Pearl Square, leaving at least 230 injured.

“Tear gas and some rounds have been fired into that hospital,” Martin Chulov of the British newspaper the Guardian told CBC News.

16. BooHooHooMan - 18 February 2011

This BREAKING UPDATE on those near-frozen trapped Caucasians in veritable white-out conditions now.
Reports indicate they were LAST SEEN NEAR
Dailykos Operations Base 4.0 . 😆

DK4 is a challenge. Up to their eyeballs in bugs. (13+ / 0-)

But the crew has been working like the Tasmanian Devil to fix ’em.

Hang in there, Ron.

“It’s the planet, stupid.”

by FishOutofWater on Fri Feb 18, 2011 at 09:15:58 AM EST

It’s not the bugs that bug me the most
(19+ / 0-)

It’s the whole damn site. Hate, hate, hate.

I’ve lost ALL sense of community and it’s more like work using the site now than fun.

I’m going to stay, as I’ve loved this site from day one, but I will never like this supposed upgrade. In my opinion, this was the worst thing that could have happened to this place. The sense of community is what has held this place together through every pie war, primary war, meta fight. And that is gone.

😆 Your flag decal won’t get you into heaven anymore. 😆 John Prine -8.00,-5.79

by Miss Blue on Fri Feb 18, 2011 at 09:26:48 AM EST

BooHooHooMan - 18 February 2011

Oh, c’mon.
Resorting to cannibalism isn’t that bad.
Try the Act Blue Staffer -who ain’t actin no more.

marisacat - 18 February 2011

The sense of community is what has held this place together through every pie war, primary war, meta fight. And that is gone.

welllllllllllllllll on the occasions that I follow a link from here, I barely recognize a screen name appearing in a thread … I was banned in late 2005.

I’d say a lot of turn over occurs.

17. marisacat - 18 February 2011

omigod. Pretzel stayed at an AIRPORT HOTEL last night (Westin). They did not even have to access the freeway to get to SFO. (speculation is that this may be one reason why, not tying up the freeways again).

Just took Aiport Boulevard, directly to the tarmac…

marisacat - 18 February 2011

Didn’t matter, they halted traffic on 101 (just moving again, as wheels up!, Foundling headed back to DC). Sounds like althought they COULD use Airport Boulevard they used the freeway.

18. marisacat - 18 February 2011



…………… 😯

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