Saturday, September 17, 2011

On the News With Thom Hartmann: Republican Jobs Bill Puts Forward More Tax Cuts for Millionaires, and More

Friday 16 September 2011
by: Thom Hartmann, Thom Hartmann Program

In today's On the News Segment: House Republicans continue to slam Obama's jobs bill while offering a "poor substitute" in its place, the Supreme Court denied another one of Rick Perry's executions, 50 economists say our economy has a good chance of slipping back into a recession, foreclosures jumped 33 percent in August, the IRS collected more than $2 billion after forcing people to disclose their offshore bank accounts, Palin says she didn't use cocaine, groin checks may be coming to a NFL stadium near you, and more.

Throw the Bums Out

Grover Norquist, president of a taxpayer advocacy group, Americans for Tax Reform, speaking at CPAC 2011 in Washington, DC. (Photo: Gage Skidmore)

Saturday 17 September 2011

by: William B. Daniels, Truthout

With recent polls announcing the approval rating of Congress as a whole is below 20 percent, the implication is that the voters from each district and state should throw their bums out. It is the 276 members of the Norquist faction in the House and Senate who are committed by a private pledge to Grover Norquist to kill the president's American Jobs Act that should be shown to the door first.

Friday, September 16, 2011

FOCUS: Matt Taibbi | 'Rogue Trader' My Ass

Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone Taibbi writes: "In fact, investment bankers by nature have huge appetites for risk, and most of them take pride in being able to sleep at night even when their bets are going the wrong way. If you're not a person who can doze through a two-hour foot massage while your client (which might be your own bank) is losing ten thousand dollars a minute on some exotic trade you've cooked up, then you won't make it on today's Wall Street." READ MORE

The War Industry: Bad Job Creators, Bad Bosses, Bad Stewards of Tax Dollars

On Tuesday, the military contractors behind the “Second To None” campaign plead “no comment” to our War Costs campaign’s full-page Politico ad exposing the economic damage caused by massive war budgets. The same day, they announced a press conference and the upcoming launch of a national campaign to scare people about job losses if we cut the war budget. It seems like they had a comment or two after all. But as these companies gather at the National Press Club on Wednesday morning to frighten you into funding their trust funds, remember: military spending costs us jobs compared to other ways of spending the money. READ MORE

Outrage: Woman Fired After Taking Time Off to Give Her Son a Kidney

In late June, Philadelphia mayor Michael Nutter vetoed a bill that would’ve guaranteed paid sick days to employees of many small businesses within the City of Brotherly Love. Nutter justified his action by saying that the bill would have been be too burdensome on businesses. Now, a Philadelphia woman has lost her job for taking time off to undergo a medical operation that helped save her son’s life. Mother Claudia Rendon had already used up her vacation days for the year after the death of both her mother and uncle and finding out her father had leukemia. But when doctors told her that her son needed a kidney for a life-saving operation, she didn’t hesitate to take some time off from her job at the Aviation Institute of Maintenance for the procedure. READ MORE

Mom Loses Job After Kidney Donation:

Zakaria destroys Rumsfeld’s Iraq war talking points

Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld isn't letting go of his talking points that support the U.S. invasion of Iraq following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

Exactly 10 years after those attacks, Rumsfeld suggested to CNN's Fareed Zakaria Sunday that Iraq had been "hospitable" to al Qaeda before the U.S. invaded the country.

"There's no question that al Qaeda and Zarqawi and people were in Iraq," Rumsfeld argued. "They aggregated there."

"If we hadn't invaded, they wouldn't have been there," Zakaria pointed out.

"We don't know that," Rumsfeld insisted. "You don't know that. I don't know that."

"But they went in to fight us. So since we weren't there, why would they have gone into Iraq?" Zakaria countered.

"Why have they gone into Yemen and Somalia?" Rumsfeld asked. "Why do al Qaeda go anywhere? They go where it's hospitable."

"Right, and Iraq hadn't been hospitable," Zakaria said. READ MORE

Watch this video from CNN's Fareed Zakaria GPS, broadcast Sept. 11, 2011.

Astronomers discover more than 50 new planets

PARIS — Astronomers on Tuesday unveiled a haul of more than 50 planets orbiting other stars, including a "super-Earth" which inhabits a zone where, providing conditions are right, water could exist in liquid form. It is the biggest single tally in the history of exoplanet hunting since the very first world beyond the Solar System was spotted in 1995, the European Southern Observatory (ESO) said in a press release. The planets were detected using a light analyser, or spectrograph, on a 3.6-metre (11.7-feet) telescope at La Silla Observatory in the ultra-dry conditions of Chile's Atacama desert. The findings were presented at a conference on Extreme Solar Systems in Moran, Wyoming, attended by 350 exoplanet specialists. Sixteen of the planets have been designated "super-Earths", a term meaning that they are exceptionally small for exoplanets that have been spotted so far. A super-Earth is between one and 10 times the mass of the Earth. It does not necessarily mean that the world is rocky -- as opposed to gassy -- or that the conditions for life exist. READ MORE

Yet Another Wall Street Billionaire Asks Working Americans to Sacrifice -- Why Do the Media Still Listen to These Guys?

Yet wealthy Wall St. CEOs keep asking for more.
September 12, 2011
Working America has sacrificed a great deal in the last 40 years: its share of the national income, its economic security and the dignity that comes with decent health and retirement benefits. Those at the top of the pile have sacrificed nothing – they're grabbing more income and paying less in taxes today than they did during the mid-century boom years. Yet, we are being asked by those very elites for “shared sacrifice.” The question is, how much “sacrifice” the little guy has to make before the big boys start sharing it. READ MORE

Mortgage rates drop to another record low

Mortgage rates inched down again this week as investors worried about the shaky U.S. economy and kept their eyes on Europe's lingering debt problems. The benchmark 30-year fixed-rate mortgagefell 3 basis points this week to 4.32 percent, according to the national survey of large lenders. A basis point is one-hundredth of 1 percentage point. This is the lowest level the fixed rate has reached since Bankrate started the weekly mortgage survey nearly 26 years ago. The mortgages in this week's survey had an average total of 0.42 discount and origination points. One year ago, the mortgage index was 4.54 percent; four weeks ago, it was 4.45 percent.READ MORE

New Census Report Says 1 in 6 Americans Live in Poverty; Real Numbers Even Higher

According to the US Census, 46.2 million people lived in poverty last year in the United States. Economist Heidi Shierholz explains why the real number is even bigger. September 14, 2011 A new U.S. Census Bureau report reveals the number of people living in poverty last year surged to 46.2 million—one in six Americans—the highest number since the Bureau began tracking such data more than 50 years ago. According to the report, blacks and Hispanics together accounted for 54 percent of the poor, with whites at 9.9 percent and Asians at 12.1 percent. Children under 18 suffered the highest poverty rate. Meanwhile, the number of Americans with employer-provided health insurance has also continued to decline, and the ranks of the uninsured now hovers just below the 50 million mark, the most in more than two decades. READ MORE

Todd Palin says McGinniss book filled with "disgusting lies"

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
(Credit: AP Photo/Craig Ruttle)

Todd Palin offered blistering criticism Wednesday of a controversial new book about his wife, which he described to reporters as filled with "disgusting lies, innuendo, and smears."

The book, by author Joe McGinniss, is said to feature a number of controversial and dubious claims about the family, including reports of drug use and inferences that Sarah Palin had a fling before she was married with former NBA star Glen Rice, according to published reports.

The book has long been a sore point for the Palins: McGinnniss, while doing research for the book, moved into house next door to the family's Wasilla, Alaska home. The Palins, memorably, built a fence between the two houses in an effort to protect their privacy.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Sarah Palin snorted cocaine off 55 gallon oil drum and had affairs with NBA star and husband's business partner: Sensational claims in new book

Claims: A new book alleges Sarah Palin has taken cocaine in the past and had a six-month affair with a former business partner of her husband Todd


News Corp shareholders lodge complaint against Rupert Murdoch

Rupert Murdoch: accused by shareholders of running News Corp as his 'own personal fiefdom'. Photograph: Pool/Reuters complaint against Rupert Murdoch Major US banks accuse Murdoch and News Corporation of corporate misconduct extending far beyond UK Full text of shareholders' complaint A prominent group of US banks and investment funds with substantial investments in News Corporation has issued a fresh legal complaint accusing the company of widespread corporate misconduct extending far beyond the phone-hacking excesses of News of the World. The legal action, lodged in the Delaware courts, is led by Amalgamated Bank, a New York-based chartered bank that manages some $12bn on behalf of institutional investors and holds about 1 million shares of News Corporation common stock. Its lawsuit is aimed against the members of News Corp's board, including Rupert Murdoch himself, his sons James and Lachlan, and the media empire's chief operating officer, Chase Carey.READ MORE

Top Air Force Official Issues Religious Neutrality Policy in Wake of Truthout's "Jesus Loves Nukes" Exposé

Air Force Joint Chief Gen. Norton A. Schwartz addresses National Guard delegates during the National Guard Association of the United States conference in Nashville, Tennessee, September 12. (Photo: Tech. Sgt. Nick Choy, National Guard Bureau Public Affairs) Wednesday 14 September 2011 by: Jason Leopold, Truthout | Report A top US Air Force official, in an attempt to ensure the Air Force adheres to the Constitution as well as its own regulations and policies, issued guidelines that calls on "leaders at all levels" to take immediate steps to maintain "government neutrality regarding religion." In his policy memorandum dated September 1, but sent Tuesday to all major commands, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton A. Schwartz said, "Leaders ... must balance Constitutional protections for an individual's free exercise of religion or other personal beliefs and its prohibition against governmental establishment of religion." READ MORE

My Life as a Daughter in the Christian Patriarchy Movement -- How I Was Taught to Obey Men, Birth 8 Kids and Do Battle Against Secular America

We were raised to fight the enemy, be it Satan or environmentalists and feminists; to come against them in spiritual warfare and at the polls. September 14, 2011 Deep within America, beyond your typical evangelicals and run-of-the-mill fundamentalists, nurtured within the homeschool movement and growing by the day, are the Christian Patriarchy and Quiverfull movements. This is where I grew up. I learned that women are to be homemakers while men are to be protectors and providers. I was taught that a woman should not have a career, but should rather keep the home and raise the children and submit to her husband, who is her god-given head and authority. READ MORE

Mortgage Default Notices Surge 33% Nationwide, 55% in California, 200% by Bank of America; Corresponding Jump in Foreclosures Will Follow

At long last, the robo-signing scandal may have finally played out. As evidence, please note the August Surge in Mortgage Default Warnings.

The number of U.S. homes that received an initial default notice -- the first step in the foreclosure process -- jumped 33 percent in August from July, foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc. said Thursday.

The increase represents a nine-month high and the biggest monthly gain in four years. The spike signals banks are starting to take swifter action against homeowners, nearly a year after processing issues led to a sharp slowdown in foreclosures.

Foreclosure activity began to slow last fall after problems surfaced with the way many lenders were handling foreclosure paperwork, namely shoddy mortgage paperwork comprising several shortcuts known collectively as robo-signing.

Many of the nation's largest banks reacted by temporarily ceasing all foreclosures, re-filing previously filed foreclosure cases and revisiting pending cases to prevent errors.

The Foreclosure Pipeline in New York is a staggering 57 years. The pipeline is 51 years in New Jersey. Please see Bad News Overwhelms; Foreclosure Pipeline in NY is 693 months and 621 Months in NJ for details.

11 Reasons Why the Unemployment Crisis Is Even Worse Than You Think

Here are 11 unemployment facts that mass media underreport or ignore completely.
September 14, 2011

President Obama recently addressed the nation during a joint session of Congress and the main theme of that address was the need to create jobs, lots of jobs, millions of jobs. The Great Recession has cost US workers millions of jobs and those jobs have not come back as quickly as they disappeared and in many cases those jobs will never return. According to the Economic Policy Institute, “In total, there are 6.9 million fewer jobs today than there were in December 2007.”

That is only a small part of the jobs-hole story, a story that is often ignored, overlooked and oversimplified by mass media.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Rick Perry Has Far More Financial Ties to Merck, Maker of HPV Vaccine, Than He Admits

Last night at the CNN Republican debate, Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) was forced to defend his executive order to administer the vaccine Gardasil to young women in his state. Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) in particular said the effort was an example of “crony capitalism,” and that Perry was too cosy with the drug company poised to benefit from the decision. Perry dismissed the comment, stating: “The company was Merck, and it was a $5,000 contribution that I had received from them. I raised about $30 million. And if you’re saying that I can be bought for $5,000, I’m offended.”

Regardless of the debate over administering the vaccine, there is no doubt that Perry grossly misrepresented the influence of Merck in his administration. For one thing, Perry has actually accepted $29,500 from the company’s PAC, and the Republican Governor Association, under Perry’s watch, took in $350,000 from Merck since 2006. Moreover, Mike Toomey, an Austin lobbyist that represented Merck during the Gardasil decision, has promised to raise $55 million to back Perry’s presidential bid using an independent so-called SuperPAC.

The Merck connections don’t end there.READ MORE

Ron Paul Wasn't Joking About Letting Uninsured People Die -- His Uninsured Staffer Died of Pneumonia

This is an unbelievably sad story, and it proves that Ron Paul was serious when he said (to audience applause) at Monday's CNN-Tea Party debate that society should allow uninsured people to die.

Ron Paul’s Campaign Manager Died of Pneumonia, Penniless and Uninsured

....As it turns out, Paul was not speaking purely in hypotheticals. Back in 2008, Kent Snyder — Paul's former campaign chairman — died of complications from pneumonia. Like the man in Blitzer's example, the 49-year-old Snyder...was relatively young and seemingly healthy when the illness struck. He was also uninsured. [The Kansas City Star quoted his sister at the time as saying that a "a pre-existing condition made the premiums too expensive."] When he died on June 26, 2008, two weeks after Paul withdrew his first bid for the presidency, his hospital costs amounted to $400,000. The bill was handed to Snyder's surviving mother (pictured, left), who was incapable of paying. Friends launched a website to solicit donations. READ MORE

GOP Crowd Cheers Death of Uninsured

CNN/Tea Party Debate Audience Cheers Letting Uninsured Comatose Man Die

When Ron Paul was asked during Monday's tea party presidential debate if an uninsured 30-year-old who became seriously ill should be allowed to die, several audience members yelled "yes!" and were met by cheers and laughter. Paul's response: "That's what freedom is all about, taking your own risk."

That video is not the most vile thing I've ever seen but it ranks right up there near the top. Paul could have made major points by chastising the audience but instead told us that churches should be taking care of the uninsured. I'm amazed that churches aren't freaking out everytime someone throws that suggestion on the table.

#1 | Posted by Reagan58 at 2011-09-13 10:00 AM | Reply |

Actions in DC and on Wall Street Signal Rise of the 'American Autumn'

Although "Seize DC" was postponed, September and October will bring an occupation of Wall Street, more tar sands protests, and the October 2011 action in DC.

Why the GOP Is Going After the EPA

Republican lawmakers aim to cut back or even abolish the Environmental Protection Agency, even though it pays for itself.
September 12, 2011

When Richard Nixon founded the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) by executive order, politicians of all stripes agreed the US needed reforms, even if it cost a small amount of economic growth. Yet, after four decades of the EPA's helping to improve our land, air and water quality, ask whether we need federal regulation and the answer depends on whom you question.

Ask ordinary people in the US and, according to a 2011 Pew survey (pdf), 71% respond, across the political spectrum, that they agree with the statement,"This country should do whatever it takes to protect the environment."

Ask most Republican politicians, some Democrats and the polluting industries that provide them substantial funding, and you'll get a very different answer. And this divergence may be ramping up in the wake ofthe Citizens United supreme court decision, which equated free speech and political contributions.

Why the Anti-Science Creationist Movement Is So Dangerous

They want to wipe out all the findings of hundreds of years of scientific investigation and have taken to schools, the courts and political leaders to get things done.

September 8, 2011

A few weeks ago, Jon Huntsman torpedoed his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination by making the following announcement:"To be clear. I believe in evolution and trust scientists on global warming. Call me crazy."

It's a pathetic commentary on the anti-intellectualism rampant in American politics that this is newsworthy. A major-party candidate announces that he doesn't deny a foundational theory of modern science! In fact, given the political atmosphere in the Republican party, it's not just newsworthy but a daring act: polls have shown that almost 70 percent of Republicans deny evolution.

The 10 Worst Weather Disasters This Year and Why They Are Happening

Surveying damage from Irene in New Jersey.
Photo Credit: Agence France-Presse

We've already had 10 disasters topping $1 billion each and it's only September -- what gives?
September 12, 2011

Floodwaters remain threatening in parts of the Northeast. A cresting Susquehanna River caused evacuations late last week in Pennsylvania -- the culprit that time was tropical storm Lee, which came on the heels of Hurricane Irene. These days extreme weather is beginning to seem like the new normal in a year marked by disastrous events -- deadly tornadoes, raging floods, crippling drought and wildfire, massive hurricanes, and don't forget the great white-out of "snowpocalpyse."

9-11 Exposed? Video from Utube

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Banksy Chimes In on Phone-Hacking Scandal

8/5/11 at 3:18 PM
Rupert Murdoch, judging by the hair.Photo: Banksy

The world famous graffiti artist had some wordplay fun with England's media woes. The playfulness of this take indicates that Banksy's real identity was not to be found on his voice mail. [Banksy via World's Best Ever]


Are You Ready for This Weekend's GOP Prayer-a-Thon to Solve America's Problems? (Which Is Expected to Flop)

Texas Governor and GOP Presidential Candidate and Total Nightmare Rick Perry will be hosting a Christian prayer-fest called "The Response" this weekend in Houston, "where participants will ask for divine help to overcome America's myriad problems."

I'm guessing one of those "problems" is not the fact that a Christian Supremacist dipsack like Rick Perry is considered a viable candidate in a secular nation.


"A historic crisis facing our nation and threatening our future demands a historic response from the church," Perry said in a video recorded to promote the event. "We must, as a people, return to the faith and hope of our fathers. The ancient paths of great men were blazed in prayer - the humility of the truly great men of history was revealed in their recognition of the power and might of Jesus to save all who call on His great name."
Read more

Did Piers Morgan Tap Paul McCartney's Phone?

In a revelation to BBC, Paul McCartney announced himself as the latest celebrity victim of the News of the World hacking scandal, and CNN's Piers Morgan might be one of the corrupt journalists behind it.

McCartney's ex-wife, Heather Mills, says a Daily Mirror journalist called her in 2001 and admitted to having heard a message McCartney left on her voice mail. Shocked, Mills says she responded "You've obviously hacked my phone and if you do anything with this story … I'll go to the police," and dissuaded the corrupt journalist from running the story.

NY To Block Bank of America Housing Abuse Settlement, Citing Fraud

American Bankerdisclosed today The Department of Housing and Urban Development settlement with Bank of America, and in court papers filed tonight, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman sought to intervene in order to "protect the marketplace and the interests of New York investors, the vast majority of whom otherwise are not present before the Court in this proceeding."

Schneiderman's opposition comes hours after the full reveal of the settlement, "releasing the company from liability for failing to adequately provide alternatives to foreclosure on 57,000 delinquent government-insured mortgages." Investors requested Bank of America repurchase toxic home loans that comprised many mortgage-backed securities, and Bank of America agreed to pay $8.5 billion, which will be allocated to all investors in Countrywide Financial mortgage bonds, but a New York court must approve the deal.

According to Reuters,"the attorney general said in a filing the accord may interfere with his ability to pursue claims against the banks involved, and claims that BofA and Bank of New York may have violated their fiduciary duties in reaching the agreement."

Bank of America and Bank of New York spokesmen declined to comment."

Read the details of the agreement here.

By Kristen Gwynne | Sourced from AlterNet
Posted at August 4, 2011, 5:22 pm

The God of Tea Party Freshmen Serves the Rich, Not the Poor

Every once in a while, you come across a news story that’s more than a story. It’s a revelation.

On Sunday morning, that’s what greeted readers of the Washington Post searching for insight into the Great Debt Showdown. The first two thirds of a piece
by David A. Farenthold and Dan Balz is a familiar recitation of the tribulations of Speaker John Boehner as he struggled with defiant new members of the House Republican conference. Nothing earth-shattering there. But then, out jumps a nugget of naked truth that simply takes your breath away. It concerns the god served by Tea Party-backed GOP members who have held the country hostage in a sham debt-ceiling crisis. Keep in mind that the passage below is not a parody:

Not even gentle persuasion could overcome higher powers Thursday. As Boehner was in his meetings, three freshman Republicans from South Carolina were in the House chapel nearby, in quiet discussion and in prayer. Reps. Mick Mulvaney, Tim Scott and Jeff Duncan wanted a stronger provision to guarantee a balanced-budget amendment and knew they would be lobbied furiously in the hours to come.

At one point, Duncan said, Mulvaney picked up a Bible and read a verse from Proverbs 22: “The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.”

“It’s telling me to really be bold, to really fight for structural changes,” Duncan said.

“Mulvaney snapped the Bible closed. And I said, ‘Guys, that’s all I need to see,’ ” Duncan said. “Tim said, ‘Yep.’ And we stood up and walked out.”

These gentlemen would like for us to construe their prayerful moment as spiritual concern for suffering Americans. That’s a tough sell, because the god worshiped by these devout South Carolina congressmen is not Yahweh. It is not the deity served by Jesus, he of throw-the-money-lenders-out-of-the-temple fame.

Jon Stewart Nails the Absurd Anti-Birth Control Argument: "You're Going to Hellllllll"

On last night's Daily Show, Jon Stewart looked at the "dividening" of America on a number of issues, including the news that insured women will be able to receive free birth control. Stewart summed up the two sides of the debate perfectly : "So on one side they're saying greater access to contraception could result in $19 billion worth of savings over a 10-year period and increase health for women, and the other side is saying, "YOU'RE GOING TO HELLLLL!!" Pretty much!

Watch the entire segment here:

The Pentagon Spent Millions on Weapons That Could Be Hacked by the Enemy, Then Sold Them for Parts on eBay

Pentagon’s Lightning Gun Sold for Scraps on eBay

Wired brings us a story that is sure to inspire the utmost confidence in our government's weapons-buying (and selling) prowess:

There was a time, not all that long ago, when the Pentagon sank tens of millions of dollars into remote-controlled lightning guns that it hoped would fry insurgent bombs before they killed any more troops. Now, disassembled parts from the one-time wonder-weapons are being sold on eBay. At least one buyer snatched up the gear, hoping to use it in his latest art project for Burning Man. Read more

Colbert on the Koch-Funded WI Voter Suppression Tricks: You Might As Well Send Your Ballot to Santa Claus

Last night, Stephen Colbert took on the voter suppression efforts happening in the Wisconsin recall elections, carried out by Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity. And boy did he kill it. The shenanigans are so bad on their own, but Colbert's faux-explanation of the shadiness makes it all seem even more insane. For instance, his rhyming explanation of a "typo" on the ballots AFP sent to Democratic voters: "On August 11th, make your selection; that's just two days after the actual election." Read more

Regulation Nation: Fox Begins Weeklong Assault On Government Regulations

September 12, 2011 2:50 pm ET — 184 Comments

Fox is launching a weeklong attack on government regulations, promising to "expose how excessive laws are drowning American businesses" - a message that coincides with a Republican push to focus on deregulation. But economists say that regulations are not harming businesses and that there is little evidence that regulations kill jobs.

As GOP Begins Push To Roll Back Regulations ...

Al Gore in 24-Hour Broadcast to Convert Climate Skeptics

Al Gore, in the Current TV studio. (photo: Zuma Press)

Nina Chestney, Reuters
Nina Chestney Reports: "Former Vice President Al Gore will renew his 30-year campaign to convince skeptics of the link between climate change and extreme weather events this week in a 24-hour global multi-media event."

Gore's presentation will be available at:

Why Is CNN In Bed With the Tea Party?

Sponsorship of tonight's Republican presidential debate has raised ethical questions. Should a major media organization partner with a radical partisan political organization? (photo: Bryan Monroe/CNN)

Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting
Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting: "Tonight's Republican debate might look familiar, with a well-known journalist posing questions to a stage full of candidates. But CNN's event is actually a co-production of sorts with the far-right Tea Party Express, raising serious questions about a journalistic outlet's decision to formally partner with a controversial political group."

Is the GOP a Religion?

Andrew Sullivan, The Daily Beast
Andrew Sullivan writes: "That's how I explain the current GOP. It can only think in doctrines, because the alternative is living in a complicated, global, modern world they both do not understand and also despise. Taxes are therefore always bad. Government is never good. Foreign enemies must be pre-emptively attacked. Islam is not a religion. Climate change is an elite conspiracy to impoverish America. Terror suspects are terrorists. When Americans torture, it is not torture. When Christians murder, they are not Christians. And if you change your mind on any of these issues, you are a liberal, an apostate, and will be attacked."

Monday, September 12, 2011

FOCUS: Rumsfeld Cancels NY Times Over Krugman 9/11 Blog

Paul Krugman, The Conscience of a Liberal
Krugman writes: "How many of our professional pundits - people who should have understood very well what was happening - took the easy way out, turning a blind eye to the corruption and lending their support to the hijacking of the atrocity?"

Has America Become Entirely Dysfunctional?

From Ayn Rand fetishists to an uninformed public, from the Tea Parties to class warfare from above: is the entire system falling apart?
September 5, 2011

Across the political spectrum, commentators are debating why President Barack Obama failed to achieve the lofty goals of his 2008 campaign when he promised "change we can believe in" and a "new tone" in Washington. A wretched jobs report two weeks ago - showing no net increase in jobs in August - and the acrimony around it underscore the point.

On the Right, the explanation is simple: socialist Obama relied on "big government" solutions, such as an early $787 billion stimulus package, when he should have slashed federal spending, eliminated regulations and trusted the "free market" to straighten things out. The answer is to elect someone like Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who would also appeal for divine intervention.

FOCUS: George Lakoff | 9/11, Intimidation via Framing

George Lakoff, Reader Supported News George Lakoff begins: "My wife, Kathleen, and I stood gaping at the TV as we watched the towers fall. Kathleen said to me, 'Do you realize what Bush and Cheney are going to do with this?' We both realized very well." READ MORE

Rick Perry Already Walking Back His Social Security is a 'Ponzi Scheme' Comments

By Heather As Lawrence O'Donnell noted in his "Rewrite" segment this Friday, after not realizing when to shut his mouth during the debate at the Reagan Library this week on whether or not he actually believed that Social Security is a "Ponzi scheme"and a "monstrous lie" to our kids, it appears he's now attempting to "rewrite" his remarks. READ MORE

Chris Hedges | A Decade After 9/11: We Are What We Loathe

Chris Hedges, Truthdig
Chris Hedges begins: "I arrived in Times Square around 9:30 on the morning of September 11, 2001. A large crowd was transfixed by the huge Jumbotron screens. Billows of smoke could be seen on the screens above us, pouring out of the two World Trade towers. Two planes, I was told by people in the crowd, had plowed into the towers. I walked quickly into the New York Times newsroom at 229 W. 43rd St., grabbed a handful of reporter's notebooks, slipped my NYPD press card, which would let me through police roadblocks, around my neck, and started down the West Side Highway to the World Trade Center."

Are the U.S. and NATO creating a new boogeyman in Libya?

Having the backing of over thirty nations, including the U.S., the
Al Qaeda linked rebels are now the recognized government of Libya.
With Gaddafi out of power, the rebels have moved on to ethnic
cleansing and the looting of weapons depots for chemical weapons
and surface-to-air missiles. If things were bad for Libyans under
Qaddafi, things are certainly worse now.

Are the U.S. and NATO creating a new boogeyman in Libya?


One of the problems with Al Qaeda has been that they are not "state actors",
this has hampered efforts to fearmonger the populace here. If this action
now makes Al Qaeda a "state actor", will we now have reason to invade
the rest of the middle east eventually?

Sunday, September 11, 2011

911 In Plane Site

Fla. Appeals Court Reverses Ruling Against Homeowners in Foreclosure Case, Due to Bad Affidavit

Posted Sep 8, 2011 5:10 AM CDT
By Martha Neil

A lender will have to try again in a Florida foreclosure case.

A state appeals court yesterday reversed a Palm Beach Circuit Court summary judgment against homeowners Gary and Anita Glarum because it relied on an affidavit by a lender representative without personal knowledge, reports the Palm Beach Post.

The couple had been found to owe LaSalle Bank nearly $423,000, based on the affidavit by Ralph Orsini.

However, "Orsini did not know who, how, or when the data entries were made into Home Loan Services' computer system," the 4th District Court of Appeal says in its opinion. "Orsini could state that the data was accurate only insofar as it replicated the numbers derived from the company's computer system."

The Glarums were represented by Tom Ice of Ice Legal.

Tony Blair is godfather to Murdoch's daughter? Now it all makes sense

The true bond between Blair and Rupert Murdoch is revealed, and with it the extent of the media baron's proximity to power

# Henry Porter
#, Monday 5 September 2011 14.37 BST

Wendi Deng has let slip that Tony Blair is godfather to Rupert Murdoch's nine-year-old daughter, Grace. Photograph: Mike Theiler/EPA

So much falls into place with the revelation that Tony Blair became godfather to one of Rupert Murdoch's two young daughtersand attended their baptism on the banks of the river Jordan last year. True, it isn't yet clear whether Blair had agreed to become a godparent while he was prime minister [see footnote], and the ceremony did take place after he had left office, but the important point is that the relationship underlines Murdoch's deep entrenchment in British political life.

Murdoch's third wife, Wendi Deng, who let slip the information in an interview with Vogue, described Blair as one of Rupert's closest friends. Blair's account of the relationship in his memoirs is somewhat different, portraying Murdoch as the big bad beast, who won his grudging respect. That is clearly disingenuous. As other memoirs and diaries from the Blair period are published, we see how close Murdoch was to the prime minister and the centre of power when really important decisions, such as the Iraq invasion, were being made.