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All, I'm taking the afternoon off, because I've got some important stuff to do. So I hope you'll keep the conversation going in my absence, and let me know what I'm missing.

I'll try to check in later. Enjoy.

By Greg Sargent  |  August 18, 2010; 1:58 PM ET
Categories:  Miscellaneous  
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Financial Reform has SUBSTANTIAL ECONOMIC BENEFITS for the country.

WSJ:

The global economy won't suffer if banks are forced to adopt tighter standards on capital and liquidity, the Financial Stability Board and Basel Committee for Banking Supervision said in a joint statement Wednesday.

The statement summarizes an interim report on the long-term effects on the economy of forcing banks to hold more capital and more liquid assets, relative to their overall balance sheet. The findings rebut banking sector complaints that such requirements would crimp lending to the real economy.

"The Basel Committee's assessment of the long-term economic impact finds that there are clear net long-term economic benefits from increasing the minimum capital and liquidity requirements from their current levels in order to raise the safety and soundness of the global banking system," the statement said.

"The analysis shows that the macroeconomic costs of implementing stronger standards are manageable, especially with appropriate phase-in arrangements, while the longer-term benefits to financial stability and more stable economic growth are substantial," FSB head Mario Draghi said in an accompanying press release.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703649004575436950880560936.html

CLEAR ECONOMIC BENEFITS!

LONG TERM BENEFITS ARE "SUBSTANTIAL"!

And the Republican Party of Extremists OPPOSED Financial Reform!

Way to try to prevent the Democrats from substantially benefiting the economy. Heckuva job. But you FAILED. The economy will be substantially better because of President of the United States Barack Hussein Obama and the Democratic Congress and NOTHING you do or say will change that.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 18, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

These two guys can't outdo each other, they're already about as far to the right as you can go. Sounds like it wasn't much of a debate though.

"At a Tea Party-sponsored debate in Louisiana last night, two House Republican hopefuls found a great deal of common ground. According to the Advocate, both support repealing the section of the 14th amendment establishing birthright citizenship. Both would repeal the 17th amendment, allowing for direct election of U.S. Senators. Both would like to cut, and limit access to, Medicare and Social Security, letting charity organizations fill the gaps.

The two candidates -- Jeff Landry and Kristian Magar -- are vying to replace House Democrat Charlie Melancon of Louisiana's third district."

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/08/louisiana-republicans-agree-scrap-birthright-citizenship-17th-amendment.php

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Check out Robin Carnahan's new ad:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iPyDnEivY1E&feature=player_embedded

Attacks Roy Blunt as Mr. Bailout!

Posted by: TomP4 | August 18, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Ooops, looks like it's not two guys, but one of each.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

"President Obama's position in support of the right of a Muslim organization to build a community center near Ground Zero in New York is now picking up the endorsement of a very prominent 9/11 widower: Former Bush administration Solicitor General Ted Olson."

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/08/911-widower-ted-olson-obama-was-right-on-cordoba-house.php

Posted by: schrodingerscat | August 18, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Two habits I have developed.

1.)When I answer my phone...the MILLISECOND..I determine I'm being spoken to by a machine...I HANG UP! Can there be anything ruder that a robo call...and yes I don't care if it's R or D or I or for the worlds' most deserving charity. If you are unable to generate enough enthusiasm to have LIVE human beings call for you..bite me!!!

2.)The instant I see "quisling" or "slave" in the first line of a post here I know to immediately scroll to the next post since it's obvious the poster has nothing serious to share and is probably in need of psychiatric help.

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Greg, enjoy your afternoon! :o)

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

@Ethan

Thanks for getting us all back on topic.
The ECONOMY!!!

BTW...I'm trying to keep an open mind about your guy Kendrick...but again I have to live here and I can tell you there is a growing sentiment of anybody but Marco!!! If our hometown boy Charlie continues to look like the winner I'm afraid I'm going to have to spring for him in the booth.

Of course now he is an I not an R which gives me some cover...and I'm actually registered as an I as well. Which in the state of Florida's closed primaries means I don't get to vote in either the R or the D race. I think closed primaries are very undemocratic given that we are eventually confined to only two realistic choices in November, with the occasional exception like Crist.

I understand the chance for the type of mischief the rush limberger tried to unleash in 08 but if you obviously limit the voter to one or the either in any given election...and perhaps forbid R's and D's from crossing over and restrict that privilege to just the I voters what's the harm?...everybody rushing to change their registration to I? Would that even be a bad thing.

Curious is there are any other registered I's living in states with closed primaries who are unable to vote? And what about those of you who live where there are open primaries? Has that been a disaster?

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

ruk, good rules for living!

(Although, I must confess, I still to this day have an robocall from Obama on my answering machine that came in the day before the election! :o)

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 2:41 PM | Report abuse

RUK,

Yeah, this report is great news for financial reform.

I truly believe that part of the purpose of the Cordoba House debate is to distract from what are now the obvious, unimpeachable facts that Health Care Reform and Financial Reform are a SUBSTANTIAL BENEFIT to the country.

re: Meek. I guess we'll have to see. This whole race is perplexing. I mean, Jeff Greene? What's up with THAT guy? I am actually pretty astonished that Meek still polls so low. I would think he'd have pulled higher... But still, he is still saving money for the all-out campaign. It's still anybody's ballgame, and as I think I've said I would vote for Crist too if it looked like Meek didn't have a chance. If Meek or Greene are not within say 10% of the lead come election day, heck yeah I'd vote Crist! :)

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 18, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Ethan

Jeff Greene is one of the two wealthy scumbags polluting Florida primaries this year. I think Kendrick takes him out...if I were registered D instead of I...I'd certainly vote for Kendrick. I don't think he'll miss my vote in the primary however.

Our other major piece of trash invading the primaries is the crook Rick Scott. Of course he is trying for the Governors mansion on the R side. The ad war between he and McCollom (Floridians call McCollom Howdy Doody) has been hilarious. A crook against a complete pandering hypocrite. What a choice for the R's. I actually feel sorry for them. This morning McCollom ran a neg ad against Scott which ended up turning the c and o in Scott's name into handcuffs. It was hilarious!

Speaking of campaign ads. Is it just because I live on the West Coast of Florida that our airwaves have been SWAMPED with BP ads that always feature some first person story..."Hi I grew up on the Gulf Coast and I love the Gulf yadda yadda..I now work for BP and I'm happy to say we're not leaving..yadda yadda..we've combed x miles of beach, scoured a gazillion gallons of water..yadda yadda"

These ads are having the exact opposite effect of providing good PR for BP. We all get p%ssed as h3ll when we see them running non stop like this. First of all we all know it's bullpucky...secondly stop spending those millions on expensive ad buys and put it back into helping Gulf residents get through this tragedy.

Ethan I think you live in NYC if I'm not mistaken. Are you guys getting flooded out with these BP spots?

Anybody else?

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

I'm not a big fan of Jeffrey Goldberg, but this is rich:

There is a very depressing story today in The Washington Post about the lunatic racist Pamela Geller, who has been leading the crusade against the so-called Ground Zero mosque. This is a woman who once called me a "Jewicidal Jihadi" for advocating for peace and compromise in the Middle East. It's a clever phrase, true, but, moi? In other dank corners of the Interwebs, I'm thought of as a blood-and-soil Jewish nationalist. I didn't really address her charges at the time, because it was my impression that Geller was a marginal nutbag, but it seems as if she's setting the national agenda now on matters related to Islam and religious freedom. To which I say, Jesus H. Christ.

http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2010/08/the-rise-of-shrieking-bigot-pamela-geller/61704/

Posted by: cmccauley60 | August 18, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

@ru: 'Is it just because I live on the West Coast of Florida that our airwaves have been SWAMPED with BP ads that always feature some first person story...'

I'm in Atlanta and we see them all the time.

Posted by: schrodingerscat | August 18, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

RUK,

Yeah, that FL GOV race is entertaining to say the least. I really hope Sink takes it, and I think she can.

As for BP ads, we definitely see them up here in NYC, but probably without nearly the frequently as what you've been seeing.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 18, 2010 3:29 PM | Report abuse

@schrodinger cat...Thanks for that info...that just hacks me off more. To make a media buy in the Atlanta market is incredibly expensive!

Does BP think we're all morons? I think we know the answer to that one. LMAO.

Really...put the freaking money where it belongs..back into cleaning up the Gulf and helping the citizens who are suffering.
Florida has been hit..certainly north of me in Pensacola even ancillary employers like Dentists are feeling the pinch. These folks still haven't totally recovered from Ivan.

But La is sooo much worse! I feel for those folks. And of course just as Pensacola hasn't completely recovered from Ivan...La is still suffering lingering effects from Katrina.

I suspect it's truly hopeless for BP. Their only out now is a name change. But they are smart corporatists and they'll figure something out. They'll milk all the tax breaks, declare bankruptcy, make everybody feel happy they went under, and that will negate the PR liability of such a toxic name when they reemerge as Smart Energy Corp or perhaps some exotic meaningless name like Anthem Energy.

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 3:33 PM | Report abuse

"Are you guys getting flooded out with these BP spots? Anybody else?"

I'm in SoCal and am seeing a few of these. I think they make BP look good.

Posted by: sbj3 | August 18, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

cmc, I wonder how much long Pam Geller will be welcomed to appear on CNN.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

More on one of Greg's favorite (not that there's anything wrong with that) stories:

I haven’t written much about the Sharon Angle Follies, but this exchange is quite interesting:

Q. Did Keynesian economics, the stimulus spending, work in the Depression of the ’30s?

A. No. And I think history has really proven that to be true. Most economists agree that the thing that really worked, which is a sad commentary, is the war.

And she’s right. Stimulus spending during the 1930s had little positive impact on the economy since there was in fact very little stimulus spending during the 1930s. Expansionary monetary policy moves made a great deal of difference in FDR’s first term, but then contractionary fiscal and monetary measures undertaken in 1937 prompted a new recession. Shortly thereafter, World War II revived the economy. But as Steve Benen says “The war was a shot in the economy’s arm because of all the spending.” The war is a textbook example of how deficit spending by the government can boost the economy by mobilizing real resources for some public purpose.

http://yglesias.thinkprogress.org/2010/08/sharon-angle-and-the-depression/

Posted by: cmccauley60 | August 18, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Letter today from Nathan Daschle to Roger Ailes:

Nathan Daschle, executive director of the Democratic Governors Association

-----

Mr. Roger Ailes
Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President
Fox News Channel
1211 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036
and VIA EMAIL

Dear Mr. Ailes,

For the first time in history, your organization is openly and proudly supporting the defeat of Democratic governors with an unprecedented political contribution of $1 million to the Republican Governors Association. In fact, your company provided the single largest corporate contribution to our opposition.

In the interest of some fairness and balance, I request that you add a formal disclaimer to your news coverage any time any of your programs cover governors or gubernatorial races between now and Election Day. I suggest that the disclaimer say: "News Corp., parent company of Fox News, provided $1 million to defeat Democratic governors in November." If you do not add a disclaimer, I request that you and your staff members on the "fair and balanced" side of the network demand that the contribution be returned.

As you are well aware, the stakes could not be higher in the 37 gubernatorial races this election cycle. Your corporation and your allies know well that these races have grave and substantial implications for Congressional redistricting. In fact, your allies in the GOP hope to change our election map for decades by electing governors who will redraw 30 seats into Republican territory.

I look forward to hearing from you - or any of your programs - at your earliest convenience.

Sincerely,
Nathan Daschle

P.S. Many news outlets have covered this controversy, but your own news programs have been strangely silent. I am available to appear on any of your programs to discuss the case for Democratic governors - particularly why our governors best for business growth. Despite my efforts to immediately reach out to your news programs, more than a dozen requests were ignored.

Cc: Bret Baier
Carl Cameron
Gretchen Carlson
Neil Cavuto
Steve Doocy
Trace Gallagher
Major Garrett
Sean Hannity
Bill Hemmer
Brian Kilmeade
Megyn Kelly
Martha MacCallum
Bill O'Reilly
Jon Scott
Shepard Smith
Greta Van Susteren
Chris Wallace

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2010_08/025267.php

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

" PANAMA CITY — A Congressional candidate told local high school and middle school students Tuesday that Islam’s plan is to destroy the American way of life.

“I’m totally against it. If I had my way, it would pretty much be over my dead body,” said Ron McNeil, a candidate for the U.S. House District 2 seat, who was referring to a controversial plan to build an Islamic center and mosque near Ground Zero in New York City. “That religion is against everything America stands for. If we have to let them build it, make them build it nine stories underground, so we can walk above it as citizens and Christians.”

Some people in the audience applauded McNeil’s response. However, one student appeared upset and asked McNeil what gave him or the federal government the right to tell an American that they can’t build an institution.

“This religion’s plan is to destroy our way of life,” McNeil said.

The student responded by saying he did not feel it was a Christian’s place to determine whether Islam is right or wrong.

“It’s our place as Christians to stand up for the word of God and what the Bible says,” McNeil replied.


http://littlegreenfootballs.com/article/36978_Florida_GOP_Candidate-_Build_the_Mosque_Underground_So_We_Can_Walk_On_It_As_Christians/comments/#ctop

I hate to be right but when I said the good thing about this issue is the right can't but help themselves to overplay this and let their stoking of racial and religious bigotry get out of hand. Between this guy, Newt and a few others, I don't imagine many moderates have the stomach for it.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | August 18, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

@suek Thanks for the copy of that letter.

It just boggles my mind that people can still fall for a network that calls itself "fair and balanced" when it obviously is not. If a company will LIE so BLATANTLY with it's very branding slogan how could you ever trust them.

Again as former broadcast journalist this "fair and balanced" lie has always bothered me. While both terms can be somewhat subject..especially fair...balanced is not really that hard to determine. I don't give a rat's arse whether someone thinks it's fair to give one party ONE MILLION bucks...but if you believe that's balanced then I believe by definition you are clueless!!!!

Everybody is entitled to watch what they want but when I read letters to the editor and they include morons spouting off about Fox's credibility...I realize they probably call people quislings and slaves.

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

"an unprecedented political contribution of $1 million to the Republican Governors Association"

Reminds one of the millions that PhRMA spent to promote Obamacare...

Posted by: sbj3 | August 18, 2010 4:09 PM | Report abuse

"an unprecedented political contribution of $1 million to the Republican Governors Association"

Reminds one of the millions that PhRMA spent to promote Obamacare...

Posted by: sbj3 | August 18, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

sbj: "Reminds one of the millions that PhRMA spent to promote Obamacare..."

What office is Obamacare running for? Is that Mr. or Mrs. or Ms Obamacare?

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

"Reminds one of the millions that PhRMA spent to promote Obamacare..."

Reminds YOU maybe. But then again, you're not known for adherence to facts and logic.

The fact is that Faux News is owned and operated by the Republican Tea Party and thus must prove undying allegience.

Faux News giving RGA $1M is like a corporation giving executives who have run the company into the ground multi-million dollar Golden Parachutes.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 18, 2010 4:19 PM | Report abuse

"Reminds one of the millions that PhRMA spent to promote Obamacare.."

Fox News is purportedly a news organization, which is a bit different. Of course, in reality Fox is NOT a news organization at all; it is the television propaganda arm of Right Wing Corporatists, a/k/a the Republican Party. Maybe that's why you got confused. Let's just call it GOP-TV from now on.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 18, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

mike: quoting the FL candidate..."make them build it nine stories underground, so we can walk above it as citizens and Christians.”


Um...isn't the actual 9/11 Memorial going to be below street level?

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

"A Congressional candidate told local high school and middle school students Tuesday that Islam’s plan is to destroy the American way of life."

Oh, for FSM's sake. That he said any of this at all is a disgrace...but to say it in front of high school and middle school students? This country has lost its collective mind.

Posted by: schrodingerscat | August 18, 2010 4:41 PM | Report abuse

sbj: "Reminds one of the millions that PhRMA spent to promote Obamacare..."

================================

I wasn't aware that 'PhRMA' represented itself as a fair and balanced news organization.

Pharmaceutical and health insurance companies did spend hundreds of millions in lobbying to make sure that HCR was corporate friendly.

Sbj3, if you oppose this corruption of our government, you could join us on the left who also oppose it.

On the right, the principle "one dollar, one vote" is almost universally held.
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | August 18, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

I realize that some of this disgusting anti Muslim rhetoric may help certain Republicans in the short term, but long term?

It's ugly, uncalled for and counter productive. I could see how it might hurt the GOP for a good long while.

The rightwingers must be counting on America's lack of long term memory. That, in all honesty, could be a safe bet. But it doesn't make it any less repulsive.

Posted by: nisleib | August 18, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

nisleib:

It's the GOP's Southern Strategery: Insult everyone in American other than elderly white males living in the Deep South. Let's hope they reap what they've sown.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 18, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

re the keynsians

I have a question. If government spending has a multiplier effect, why isn't every country, even the third world toilets, rich?

Why did the USSR fail? Afterall, all the money belonged to the state, right? So why didn't the keynsian magic work there?

Re: fox news

Oh, my. Imagine a company in America excersing its legal right to contribute to campaigns. I can understand how upset the Democrats must be. After all, the million from Fox could have gone to them. Now they have to content themselves with the contributions they always get. Like the reporters, editors, and publishers of other media. So sad for them.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | August 18, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

If the right is going to demonize all Muslims or the entire Islam religion, perhaps it's time to bring our soldiers home. They're not safe anymore.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

SBJ...as your old hero St. Ronnie used to say "There you go again"

"Reminds one of the millions that PhRMA spent to promote Obamacare..."

Huh...is Phrma fair and balanced. You have missed the entire point. Nobody is excoriating the R's for taking the money, of course they will and should. Nobody is saying it's not GOP-TV's right to donate the money...all we are saying is it's hypocritical beyond belief and Faux News is EXACTLY that FAUX news..it' clearly FAUX! And as much as I like you SBJ when you defend Fox you are defending hypocrisy and lying which at minimum would make you an accomplice at maximum it makes you a liar and hypocrite as well. I like to think better of you SBJ. I know you like to tweak our noses for fun...fine..but pick and issue that works...like Harry Reid wimping out..or Dem Rep Arcury behaving just as poorly as Palin and Gingrich.

If Fox wants to be GOP TV fine...simply admit what you are...amazingly SBJ there are enough idiots in this country to fall for GOP-TV's horse manure. They have over a half dozen actual republican politicians and appointed officials as hosts...how many Dems?...they literally organized and hosted the largest of the tea party gatherings.

If truth in advertising had any teeth Fox would have to pay the largest fine in history for their fair and balanced BS.

I'm not accusing GOP-TV of simple propaganda...I'm saying they LIE!
Do you get that SBJ? They are traitors to our country because they deceive and lie and they are pushing the opposite of United we stand divided we fall...they are for the old "divide and conquer"

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

After that we can close all our borders, airways and ports, duck and cover and hope for the best. This is getting ridiculous and ugly and completely unnecessary. We're not engaged in a war with Islam, although I'm sure some R's would just love that, talk about the long war. Sheeesh.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

@skippy Obviously you missed the socialist success of NAZI Germany. You do realize that stands for National SOCIALIST party.

You do realize that as evil as he was Hitler did rescue the German economy while the world remained in depression with...horrors of horrors..GOVERNMENT SPENDING.

Neither Socialism or CAPITALISM work when there is too much corruption. Right now we are seeing the damage to our free enterprise system because of lack of regulation and the greedy corruption on Wall Street.

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

"Why did the USSR fail? Afterall, all the money belonged to the state, right? So why didn't the keynsian magic work there?"

Since when does Keynesian economics promote the notion that "all the money belong to the state"?

And I'm so confused.....I thought the evil empire fell because Ronaldus Magnus ripped it apart with his bare hands. Kind of like Sarah Palin dressing a moose.

Posted by: schrodingerscat | August 18, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Ims: "If the right is going to demonize all Muslims or the entire Islam religion, perhaps it's time to bring our soldiers home. They're not safe anymore."


I've been saying this for a few days now. This is undermining the troops who are supposed to be winning hearts and minds. This stuff is getting reported over there, and will be used as propaganda.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 5:08 PM | Report abuse

@lmsinca...

I love you but you are a real party pooper.
Who are you to deprive the fright wing of a good war. By all means we should be at war with Islam. And why wait.

The R's should simply elect John Bolton in 2012 and we can be on our happy way to destruction. We can let all of our hatred come to fruition and bomb the h3ll out of everybody.

Bolton's latest admonition. Israel has 8 days to attack Iran's reactor because the rods will be in place by then and the radioactive fallout would kill too many Iranian citizens. But John their freaking Muslims they don't count. They're part of Islam and we could get in the first shot.
Bolton seemed very depressed however when he had to acknowledge that the Israelis are probably going to blow their opportunity. Ohhh crap...you mean we don't get to see the start of WWIII...you mean we won't be in on the apocalypse and the 2nd coming.

It's all your fault lmsince...you peacenik.
Who wants peace when we could be well on our way to WWIII.

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Skip, if you're playing a game of who can ask the dumbest question, we get it, you win HANDS DOWN. You're the CHAMP!

For starters, it is a fact that government spending has a multiplier effect. There's no "IF".

Second, you are presuming that the Communist government of the former USSR spent government money on the same things as we have.

For example, USSR spends money (complete with multiplier effect on their economy) for 5,000 nuclear weapons that never get used and require billions in maintenance. At the same time, the U.S. spends money on medicaid, helping the lower income Americans become more upwardly mobile and contributing to the multiplier effect on the economy. In this example, BOTH instances have government spending with a multiplier effect. But in the end, only ONE has a middle class, the other crumbles into the dustbin of history.

Given that this is obvious and more common sense than economics, you win the dumbest question prize hands down.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 18, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

skippy, if unbridled capitalism is what you seek...you know, no government interference in anything...Somalia has a room for you.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

It's so frustrating because they're treating it like it's some kind of game. We have a tenuous relationship with a couple of middle eastern countries at best. If we can't behave like responsible participants in the global environment we don't deserve to be considered brokers for peace or anything else for that matter, including the economy.

ruk, I saw Bolton's comments and the countdown to Israel striking, what an idiot. These people are playing with real lives and just don't seem to care one iota.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Sigh..

Apparently Howard Dean says the Park 51 project should move to another location.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 5:15 PM | Report abuse

in response to this:
============
@skippy Obviously you missed the socialist success of NAZI Germany. You do realize that stands for National SOCIALIST party.

You do realize that as evil as he was Hitler did rescue the German economy while the world remained in depression with...horrors of horrors..GOVERNMENT SPENDING.

Neither Socialism or CAPITALISM work when there is too much corruption. Right now we are seeing the damage to our free enterprise system because of lack of regulation and the greedy corruption on Wall Street.

==========

Whole bunch of anger, but no answer to my very straightforward question. Invoking nazi germany makes little sense in this context.

Once again, if government spending has a multiplier effect, why isn't every country rich?

and no ethan, I'm not making any assumptions at all. I'm simply asking the keynsians to tell me why it doesn't work.

Are you saying, Ethan, that military spending has no multiplier? doesn't that contradict your earlier statement that there is no "if"? Futher if there is no multiplier, why is closing a military base in America so tough for the politicians?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | August 18, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

If you are up for it, TPM interviewed Pam Geller today.

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/08/anti-mosque-geller-to-tpm-strip-clubs-didnt-bring-down-the-towers.php?ref=fpblg

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

"I realize that some of this disgusting anti Muslim rhetoric may help certain Republicans in the short term, but long term?

It's ugly, uncalled for and counter productive. I could see how it might hurt the GOP for a good long while.

The rightwingers must be counting on America's lack of long term memory. That, in all honesty, could be a safe bet. But it doesn't make it any less repulsive."

Posted by: nisleib | August 18, 2010 4:50 PM

--------------------------------------

The whole stinkin' thing feels very much like Terry Schiavo all over again, another example of the GOP overplaying its hand on a manipulative wedge issue.

In the Schiavo case, even those who were sympathethic to the pro-life position were eventually offended by the circus that the cause became, and the fact that national politicians were exploiting a what was a private family matter.

I suspect that the over-saturation of this controversy will eventually result in most Americans reaching the conclusion that it is best decided by the normal processes in place within the community in lower Manhattan.

Posted by: Patrick_M | August 18, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Hey All,

Check out this amazing article fact-checking the Park51 issue from the AP:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100818/ap_on_go_ot/us_mosque_fact_check

Posted by: bmcchgo | August 18, 2010 5:30 PM | Report abuse

I guess Howard Dean is Un-American.

http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/0810/Howard_Dean_Mosque_an_affront.html

Posted by: CarolinaMike | August 18, 2010 5:46 PM | Report abuse

Hey all, awesome thread! Thanks for all the links.

Makes me think all I need to do is set up a thread each morning and kick back while you all do all the lifting. :)

As for Dean's thing, I have never, ever called any Republican critic of the mosque anti American, no matter how many people lie to the contrary.

Posted by: sargegreg | August 18, 2010 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Patrick - I hope you are right. The GOP should pay a price for their bigotry and religious intolerance.

We will find out in time.

You know I've always been a reluctant admirer of the Republican's message discipline. The message may not be my cup of tea, but once they decide on a message you can count on dozens of rightwing talking heads to repeat the issued talking points, word-for-word, everywhere they go. During the Bush years it was especially evident. Jon Stewart did a hilarious mash-up of numerous GOP talking heads, it was a thing of beauty.

This Park 51 incident is making me wonder, however, if that amazing message discipline is slipping. Yes, it fits into the "Southern Strategy" that the GOP has been using for over 40 years. Yes, this is nothing out of the ordinary for the GOP in the months preceding an election. Yes, prominent Republican Presidential wannabes like Newt and Palin are fighting to see who can be the most wacked out Muslim hater. But does it make any sense?

They have the south regardless. Those voters with racist inclinations are going to vote Republican regardless. The hard right base is already energized. Most political consultants (that I've heard) say the smart play for the GOP is to keep focused on the economy/jobs and shun social issues. They don't need social issues, not for 2010.

So why bother?

This bubbled up, from what I understand, from Pamela Geller, a rightwing blogger best known for her xenophobic hate mongering.

Could it be that the Republicans can no longer control the wack job elements of their base? If so the GOP has lost one of its greatest advantages over the Democrats.


Posted by: nisleib | August 18, 2010 5:57 PM | Report abuse

carolinamike

Personally, I could care less whether the people of Manhattan or the owners of the property decide to move the community center or not. I always gave consideration to the families of the 9/11 victims and the city itself. Although I admit the argument seemed weak all things considered. What you won't hear from Dean, Reid or any other Democrat is the irrational demonization of Islam or the Imam himself. And as this is occurring across the country I don't believe most people, except the victims families, can claim proximity to ground zero as the basis for their objections.

Most of us fall into the category as advocates of religious freedom and not actually blaming an entire religion for the crimes of a few, especially the very ones who are trying to broker understanding between people of many different faiths.

Once Newt and Palin opened their mouths as potential presidential candidates, the issue took on a whole new dimension. It certainly brought out the haters at this site and others and has not given our soldiers over there much confidence in their assignment. Funny how Republicans always claim to be the party that supports our troops, how's that working out? And national security, forget about it.

Sorry everyone, I know a lot of people wanted this to be a mosque free thread. I'll shut up now, that guy at the school really ticked me off.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 6:10 PM | Report abuse

Ims, victims families.

http://islam.about.com/blvictims.htm

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 6:18 PM | Report abuse

I am fascinated by the lefts' hatred(?) of Fox News. It's not an "over the air" broadcast, but a subscriber service. You have to pay to watch it. Granted, they have good ratings, and are inching towards network news viewership, it's still the equivalent of an Broadcast version of The Nation. Ultimatly, no more than 3-5 million watch it, out of what, 300 million population and maybe 100 million voters? Why do you think it's influence is so large considering how small the audience is?

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | August 18, 2010 6:21 PM | Report abuse

From Weigel:

"As long as the Post continues to track Sarah Palin's -- and only Sarah Palin's -- endorsements of Republican candidates in primaries, is it fair to point out that last night was a debacle for her. Her pick in the Wyoming gubernatorial primary, Rita Meyer, lost narrowly. Her pick in Washington state's Senate race, Clint Didier, scored around 11 percent of the vote in the state's jungle primary. Palin's only significant victory was John Korster, who's now the GOP challenger in Washington's second district. Yes, Rep. Cathy McMorris-Rodgers (R-Wa.) won, too, but an incumbent member of the GOP leadership can't thank Palin for pulling her out.

Palin's pure win-loss record: 13-11, if you count her special election endorsements of Scott Brown and Doug Hoffman, which the Post doesn't. The win column includes some people who really couldn't have lost, like McMorris-Rodgers and Iowa's Terry Branstad. In other words, Palin's record is about as good as the record you've notch up if you picked people at random."

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 6:22 PM | Report abuse

sue, I know, it's sad for everyone and this is not helping by opening up old wounds is it? I think if this issue had stayed in NY where it belonged we'd all be better off.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 6:28 PM | Report abuse

If we must ban the First Amendment within a certain distance of "hallowed ground," what (precisely) is the correct distance at which the US Constitution again applies?

Posted by: Patrick_M | August 18, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

"it's sad for everyone and this is not helping by opening up old wounds is it? I think if this issue had stayed in NY where it belonged we'd all be better off."

Amen. Bravo!

Posted by: wbgonne | August 18, 2010 6:39 PM | Report abuse

Just wanna say that I'm seeing lots of new commenters around here lately who are contributing great, great stuff.

So: Welcome newcomers, I hope you hang around, and I hope the regulars welcome you, too. Thanks for chiming in.

Back to normal posting schedule first thing in the AM.

Posted by: sargegreg | August 18, 2010 6:57 PM | Report abuse

Jonah: "In any decent society, tolerance must work both ways. If the majority is expected to show respect for a minority, the minority must also show some tolerance for the values of the majority... This isn’t a clear-cut issue of right and wrong. It’s more complicated than that. It’s about deference and decency and common sense. And one of the things common sense should tell us is that it is not only unfair but terribly ill-advised to portray 7 out of 10 Americans as bigots when they are anything but."

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/244080/america-decent-jonah-goldberg

Posted by: sbj3 | August 18, 2010 6:59 PM | Report abuse

This is from the NYTimes in June, before all the objections of proximity to ground zero erupted. As I said earlier, it's not just going on in NY either. I think there are lots of people out there who are lying about their support of religious freedom. And I also think that Gingrich, Palin and Pawlenty should give up their idea of running for President, they clearly have no idea what they're doing. This encapsulates community meetings going on from Coast to Coast.

"The tenor of the inquiry became so fraught that the meeting eventually collapsed in shouting around 11 p.m., prompting the police and security guards to ask everyone to leave.

But just 20 minutes earlier, as Bill Finnegan stood at the microphone, came the meeting’s single moment of hushed silence. Mr. Finnegan said he was a Marine lance corporal, home from Afghanistan, where he had worked as a mediator with warring tribes.

After the sustained standing ovation that followed his introduction, he turned to the Muslims on the panel: “My question to you is, will you work to form a cohesive bond with the people of this community?” The men said yes.

Then he turned to the crowd. “And will you work to form a cohesive bond with these people — your new neighbors?”

The crowd erupted in boos. “No!” someone shouted."

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/11/nyregion/11mosque.html?_r=1

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 7:05 PM | Report abuse

@sbj - And I'm sure Jonah would have been sympathetic to German peoples' concerns, circa 1932, re their discomfort at having jewish people living outside of the ghettos. Minorities must be sensitive as a matter of fairness.

Posted by: bernielatham | August 18, 2010 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, Bernie - that's just idiotic.

Posted by: sbj3 | August 18, 2010 7:21 PM | Report abuse

@ruk: 'Obviously you missed the socialist success of NAZI Germany. You do realize that stands for National SOCIALIST party.'

c'mon now. just they were fascist, not socialist. just because they called themselves socialist, doesn't mean they were. they were in bed with the big business -- the definition of fascism and a far cry from socialism.

sorry to harp on this and i'm with you on pretty much everything else i've seen you write here. it's just important not to repeat the jonah goldberg's pathetic meme attempting to conflate the left with fascism when fascism is a right wing ideology.

Posted by: blahgblogwordpresscom | August 18, 2010 7:28 PM | Report abuse

sbj, yeah, I'm sure Jonah realizes that as recently as 50 years ago minority blacks who didn't "show deference" to or "tolerance" of the majority could be subject to beatings, lynchings, midnight visits from the KKK who left crosses burning in their yards, firebombings of their churches, let alone poll taxes, denial of public services and other assorted niceties designed to illict much more proper behavior on the part of said minorities.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 7:33 PM | Report abuse

A commenter at Booman Tribune:

"I don't think the best way to protect freedom in the United States is by emulating the lack of freedom in Saudi Arabia. At least during the Cold War we always held ourselves to a higher standard than the Soviet Union - "We're better than the Russians." Now the right-wing solution is to seek the lowest possible standard and match it."

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 7:40 PM | Report abuse

From a commenter at Ballon Juice on the topic of Howard Dean calling for a compromise:

"Here’s a possible compromise: instead of making the building a mosque, minarets and all, they could just make it a community center along the lines of the YMCA, and include a praying area for Muslims. That should satisfy all involved."

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 8:03 PM | Report abuse

@CarolinaMike "I guess Howard Dean is Un-American."

Not at all. I think he's just flat-out wrong.

And @Imsinca, as a long-time lurker (hate that seedy-sounding word :); maybe that's why I finally joined the fray), I agree with you 9 times out of 10. But I don't think even the families of the 9/11 victims have a claim on what should or shouldn't be built two blocks away from the site.

I think this whole thing is, for the most part, an effort by right-wing politicians to stir up an emotional debate and distract us from things that they don't want to talk about. I wish it weren't working, but here I am, distracted and talking about it!

On another front, the last of the combat troops are leaving Iraq. I always get here late, so it has probably been posted already. That's good, isn't it? Just not as shiny an object as a community center in lower Manhattan, lol.

Posted by: carolanne528 | August 18, 2010 8:21 PM | Report abuse

carolanne528, if it were up to me, I'd agree with you 100%. I don't really think there's any valid reason not to allow the building to go ahead especially if it's true the city has already approved it.

I'm just trying to show some sensitivity to the families, even if I don't agree, because I'm sure there are some genuinely conflicted folks out there. But you're right, I do believe the right has determined for some crazy reason to make this an issue and all they've accomplished IMO is to further damage the fragile relationship we have with Islam and the Muslim community.

Please comment more often, especially since you agree with me 9 times out of 10, LOL. That's probably some kind of record for me. Seriously, everyone's opinion is welcome here and you can always just scroll right on through the threads that get hijacked.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 8:31 PM | Report abuse

I just noticed Google removed that horrible image of Michelle Obama's photo turned into a monkey that was the first image that would display.

The internet just became a little more decent.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | August 18, 2010 9:04 PM | Report abuse

This isn’t a clear-cut issue of right and wrong. It’s more complicated than that. It’s about deference and decency and common sense. And one of the things common sense should tell us is that it is not only unfair but terribly ill-advised to portray 7 out of 10 Americans as bigots when they are anything but."

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/244080/america-decent-jonah-goldberg

Posted by: sbj3 | August 18, 2010 6:59 PM
==============================

"Dear Muslim Devils, please be sensitive and respectful of our desire to conflate all of you with a small band of homicidal maniacs as we race-bait our way into the midterm elections."
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | August 18, 2010 9:12 PM | Report abuse

Imsinca, thanks so much for the welcome. I appreciate your sensitivity and agree that a lot of people (mostly the 9/11 families and friends) are conflicted. I may be wrong, but I think most of them would (sooner or later)accept the community center being there if the "outsiders" didn't keep trying to create such a controversy about it.

I'll keep posting. I enjoy the back and forth on this site immensely, and I learn a lot. I even confess to enjoying some of the not-so-friendly exchanges LOL.

Posted by: carolanne528 | August 18, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse

Greg:

"As for Dean's thing, I have never, ever called any Republican critic of the mosque anti American"

And Bill Clinton never, ever, had sex with that woman.

Greg's claim is true only in a strictly semantic sense. He never used those exact words. However, as a practical matter it is difficult to read the last week's worth of posts, particularly his post following Obama's speech last weekend, and conclude anything other than that Greg is simply lying about this.

To clarify:

Greg interpreted Obama's speech as saying "flat-out" that to do "anything less" than to "welcome" and "respect" the organizers of the project was "un-American". In order for Greg to be telling the truth above (again, apart from a strictly Clintonian truth) when he says he never called anyone "un-American", one of two things must be true.

Either Greg must believe that opponents of the project, the very people who he has been railing against for weeks and whose position he has called "indefensible", are nonetheless going Obama's extra mile and "welcoming" and "respecting" the organizers of the project.

Or Greg must reject the position he attributed to Obama as wrong, despite the fact that he celebrated the articulation of this position as one of the "finest moments" of Obama's presidency.

So which is it Greg? Have the critics of the project in fact "welcomed" and "respected" the organizers of the project, despite the fact that their position is "indefensible", or was Obama's "finest moment" as president the articulation of a position with which you wholly disagree?

Or, as is most likely, are you simply making a Clintonian distinction when you say that you have "never, ever" called a critic of the project "un-American"?

Posted by: ScottC3 | August 18, 2010 9:38 PM | Report abuse

I mentioned last night, hey it's August and the "dog days of summer" but Digby is much better at it than I am.

Having It Both Ways

by digby

"All afternoon I've been listening to reporter after reporter reassure the audience that Republican strategists are very upset about all this Muslim trash talk and that they really just wish everyone could get back to an elevated discussion of the economy.

That's very convenient, don't you think? Their lunatics are out there fanning the flames of racism and xenophobia for the neanderthal base, while they tut-tut on TV about civility. I think they are quite happy to have it both ways. Right now they are dominating the news cycle with this ugly nonsense, which is all they care about.

August hissy fits usually fade once they've done their job, which is gin up the GOP base with red meat politics (swiftboats, death panels, Ground Zero Mosque) and turn the Democrats into pretzels, making them look like they don't know their assess from their elbows. Once that's done, they'll go back to demonizing the Democrats for their socialist/fascist ways having made sure their weakness and ineffectuality were fully displayed to normal people who can't figure out how these lunatics came to be running the asylum. Again."

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Wow so Sarah Palin defended Dr. Laura's racist rant on twitter. She must be drunk twittering again.

http://littlegreenfootballs.com/article/36981_Sarah_Palin_Defends_the_Right_to_Use_the_N_Word

Posted by: mikefromArlington | August 18, 2010 9:53 PM | Report abuse

"...Islam is really back in the 12th century in some of these countries like Iran and Afghanistan..."
Howard Dean; 08.18.2010

{{{snort}}}

Posted by: tao9 | August 18, 2010 9:54 PM | Report abuse

In between his sporadic bouts of ignoring me, (or at least announcing that he's going to ignore me from now on, really), Bernie has routinely accused me of failing to make relevant distinctions whenever I draw an analogy that militates against his take on things or when I apply his justification for a given position to a situation in which the outcome isn't exactly to his liking.

So it is with great mirth that I read Bernie's latest to sbj, in response to Jonah Goldberg's point today that tolerance and respect is, in fact, a two-way street. Sayeth the wise Bernie:

"And I'm sure Jonah would have been sympathetic to German peoples' concerns, circa 1932, re their discomfort at having jewish people living outside of the ghettos. Minorities must be sensitive as a matter of fairness."

Ah yes...the man so keen on drawing relevant distinctions apparently believes that to want the builders of the m/Ic/w to be respectful of sensitivities surrounding 9/11 is comparable and analagous to Nazis forcing Jews to live in ghettos.

Yet another howler to stuff into the overflowing vault of Bernie's hypocrisies.

Posted by: ScottC3 | August 18, 2010 10:10 PM | Report abuse

I wouldn't say that the opposition to the not-a-Mosque that isn't at Ground Zero is un-American, ScottC3.

You and and your fellow propagandists have a long history in this country.

http://assets.theatlantic.com/static/mt/assets/matthewyglesias/lynching.jpg
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | August 18, 2010 10:18 PM | Report abuse

@bbgwordpress Thanks for the correction about the "real" political beliefs of the Nazi's and I believe you made a very cogent point about the dangers of conflating fascism and socialism. And you are absolutely correct that calling yourself a socialist doesn't make it true.
Kinda like calling yourself a Constitutional conservative doesn't make it true.

I think my original point to skippy still stands however...Government spending is certainly what pulled Germany out of one of the worst depressions in a world racked by depression.

It saddens me that many Americans don't have the courage of their convictions. We have become that neighbor/friend/relative who makes an important purchase and then when you make a similar purchase feels the need to denigrate your choice because if your choice is better it may somehow negate the value of their choice.

Specifically in real life terms I'm referring to how we make fun of the Euros when every survey on happiness shows their society to be far happier than ours. I must confess to my own prejudices in this area. Once while googling the happiest places on earth I found Venezuela near the very top of the list...I was stunned.

America certainly was...perhaps still is...the greatest nation on earth...but if we keep this crap up not for much longer.

Again...from Aesop to Thomas Paine..
"United we stand divided we fall"

From Lee Atwater to Karl Rove the Republican mantra..."divide and conquer."

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 10:21 PM | Report abuse

Scott, SBJ or any of our other rational conservatives on this site...I have a couple of questions...no snark intended...questions offered up respectfully just to get a take on how you guys feel...I'm truly in the dark.

1.)There has been a LOT of talk about people's sensitivities. Do the sensitivities of Muslim families who lost loved ones in 9/11 matter at all? How about the sensitivities of first responders who risked their lives in the hours after the attack who also happen to be Muslim?

2.)Is the sensitivity thing strictly about majority rule. i.e. do the sensitivities of the majority always negate the sensitivities of the minority?

These are truly not intended as trick or trap questions I'm genuinely curious as to how folks feel about this philosophically.

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 10:32 PM | Report abuse

ruk, thunder and maybe wbgonne, I try not to link to FDL too much (I know how unpopular they are) but this is a must read for all of us peaceniks. We've made ourselves unbelievably weak by fighting two unnecessary wars and left one our our allies and the people we are trying to win over in Pakistan adrift on a sea of water.

"Well, this is it folks. These are the consequences of a decade of military adventurism, occupying Iraq and Afghanistan. This is why no matter what it is that the US is sending to Pakistan, it will not be enough. We just don’t have enough to give.

It’s not only the military breaking, or the State department, or the White House, or Congress, or the media, or the apathy of the American public – it’s all of these things adding up to a slow, incompetent, ineffective response to the threats we face. The ability for the United States to project power abroad – to protect its national security interests – is broken.

The so-called battle for hearts and minds in Pakistan, the battle against anti-Americanism, radicalism, and militancy in the tribal regions, the battle for a secure and stable Central Asia – this is the war that America will lose because of our occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan. This is what we are defenseless against, helpless to stop."

http://seminal.firedoglake.com/diary/65871

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 10:33 PM | Report abuse

mike: "Wow so Sarah Palin defended Dr. Laura's racist rant on twitter. She must be drunk twittering again."

It kinda makes me wonder if Sarah would have felt the same way if Dr. Laura had ranted "retard" or "retarded" instead of the N-word.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 18, 2010 10:34 PM | Report abuse

Final thought before bedtime...I admire Howard Dean but in this case he is simply wrong.

19 wack jobs attacked us on 9/11 not Islam.

Virtually every American (other than Muslims of course) who I have seen comment on Islam is ignorant in the literal not pejorative sense. They simply don't know WTF they are talking about.

Virtually all of the politicians and punditry commenting on Islam make the HUGE mistake of viewing Islam as a monolithic religion. Its just like Christianity with various sects. Just as there are Christians who pass poisonous snakes in church...Christians who believe a piece of bread and a cup of wine are LITERALLY the flesh and blood of Jesus Christ through a process called transubstantiation..and all the various of other Christians..Muslims have different sects. And I'm not just speaking of Sunni and Shia...I'm talking about Wahhabbis and Sufis at opposite ends of the Muslim spectrum.

If you REALLY care to educate yourself a little more about Islam's sects and what they mean to our country please read this.

http://www.tampabay.com/opinion/columns/article1115779.ece

Yet many of our leaders have a tendency to see the Islamic world as a single, terrifying monolith. Feisal Abdul Rauf of the Cordoba Initiative is one of America's leading thinkers of Sufism, the mystical form of Islam, which in terms of goals and outlook couldn't be further from the violent Wahhabism of the jihadists. His videos and sermons preach love, the remembrance of God (or zikr) and reconciliation. His slightly New Agey rhetoric makes him sound, for better or worse, like a Muslim Deepak Chopra. But in the eyes of Osama bin Laden and the Taliban, he is an infidel-loving, grave-worshiping apostate.

Sufism is the most pluralistic incarnation of Islam — accessible to the learned and the ignorant, the faithful and nonbelievers — and is thus a uniquely valuable bridge between East and West.

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 10:40 PM | Report abuse

@lmsinca

I didn't get to read that FDL piece but thank for sharing. It's a bit coincidental in that I was watching Nightly News this evening and all the suffering a tragedy in Pakistan right now and I turned to my wife and said..."Do you suppose we'd have done a better job in the war on terror if we hadn't already WASTED billions on bombs, hatred and warfare. Imagine if those G.I.'s in Afghanistan flew their Blackhawks and Chinooks into those devastated regions of Pakistan.
Imagine if all those Pakistanis were getting food in packages with the American flag on them instead of bomb from invisible drones overhead.

For me this is terribly disturbing. Aside from the horrid morality we have demonstrated..we've also behaved stupidly..AGAINST our own interests!!!!!

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 10:47 PM | Report abuse

ifya,

Re: your link @ August 18, 2010 10:18 PM

I assume you have no friends and that your family will have nothing to do with you, so this will have to suffice as a gesture of charity from a concerned bystander:

www.psychotherapist.net/crisis-hotlines.htm
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The madman is not the man who has lost his reason. The madman is the man who has lost everything except his reason.
Chesterton; Orthodoxy

Posted by: tao9 | August 18, 2010 10:49 PM | Report abuse

carolanne528, I just realized I didn't comment on your celebration of the last combat troops leaving Iraq. You're right, it is a bright spot for the soldiers and their families. I will not comment on it other than to say we can bring our people home now.

Anecdotally, my oldest daughter is teaching photoshop at a community college (this is her second year) and she is taking an emergency class tomorrow in dealing with PTSD for incoming ex-military students.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 10:51 PM | Report abuse

ruk, thunder and maybe wbgonne, I try not to link to FDL too much (I know how unpopular they are) but this is a must read for all of us peaceniks.
==============================

I don't mind links to FDL. I donated to a lot of candidates who are now in Congress via FDL back in 2006. Thanks to the behavior of some of them, I'm more careful of who I donate to these days.

I'm looking at you, Heath Shuler...you stink even more now as a DINO congresscritter than you did as a Redskins QB.

I didn't agree when Jane Hamsher threw down with Grover Norquist to defeat HCR, but she was right that Rahm & Co. sold out the public option in secret to their corporatist buddies.

And then they shamelessly pretended it was those mean Blue Dog Senators (aka their best buddies) who blocked it.
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | August 18, 2010 10:54 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: tao9 | August 18, 2010 10:49 PM |
====================

You can place your concern where the sun doesn't shine, troll.
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | August 18, 2010 11:01 PM | Report abuse

@tao9 As always I enjoy your posts which come from a perspective that...well let's say you've selected a great moniker...it's not possible to explain the Tao but it is possible to know it.

As for your Chesterton quote...awesome...

For the first ten years of my professional life I was a rock and roll air personality.
I've always loved music, alas I have no talent for actually playing an instrument so playing records (yes I'm that freaking old) was the next best thing.

And so let me add to your Chesterton quote with the lyrics from a popular hit of a year ago..Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy"

I remember when, I remember
I remember when I lost my mind
There was something so pleasant about that place
Even your emotions have an echo in so much space

And when you're out there without care
Yeah, I was out of touch
But it wasn't because I didn't know enough
I just knew too much

Does that make me crazy?
Does that make me crazy?
Does that make me crazy?
Possibly

Perhaps sharing how much I relate to this song reveals too much about my past...but from MY perspective I think Gnarls has nailed it...just like Chesterton.

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 11:09 PM | Report abuse

thunder, I see you mistakenly bought into the Hamsher/Norquist association with HCR. Actually, what they teamed up on was a letter to question the Government's unlimited funding of Fannie and Freddie over the Christmas Holiday of 2009. There was a lot of mis-information out there. I didn't agree with the "kill the bill" crowd, although I was unhappy with the bill we got. But FDL and Norquist never combined efforts to defeat the bill.

When I link to FDL it is because they have some very wonky and intelligent posters there with a perspective not presented by the usual Dem establishment groups. I am watching very carefully all the info. on the deficit commission and social security and they are an invaluable resource. I'm waiting patiently to see where it leads, but it is my line in the sand.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 11:14 PM | Report abuse

As I get ready to drift off to sleep I wonder what are the values of American society in 2010? I certainly don't have an idea anymore.

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 18, 2010 11:19 PM | Report abuse

eef-yawn,

"...sun DON"T shine" scans better and sounds more colloquial, folksy ya know.

Troll? Y'alls the newby here. Never before saw the most bloody partisan poster here characterize an oppo by linking a lynching photo. Kind of new ground @ PL.

Where's Howard Dean and the {Dem} Senate Majority Leader standing in the filth, er, picture you linked?

Posted by: tao9 | August 18, 2010 11:20 PM | Report abuse

ruk:

"There has been a LOT of talk about people's sensitivities. Do the sensitivities of Muslim families who lost loved ones in 9/11 matter at all?"

Sure.

"How about the sensitivities of first responders who risked their lives in the hours after the attack who also happen to be Muslim?"

Sure.

"Is the sensitivity thing strictly about majority rule. i.e. do the sensitivities of the majority always negate the sensitivities of the minority?"

It's not clear to me how, in this instance, one must necessarily negate the other. Is there something about the sensitivities of Muslims that requires the project to be built close to GZ such that one side's sensitivities must lose out?

My whole take on this is that it has been an entirely unnecessary brouhaha. To be clear, personally I am not bothered one iota about the thing being built at the proposed site. I really could not care less.

However, that there would be objections should have been obvious to someone involved from the very beginning. Wouldn't it have been in the interest of all parties for some wise local politician, community leader, business man, whatever, to have pre-empted all of this by privately pointing out to the organizers the probable public reaction, and suggesting alternative sites that might mute that reaction? Before it raised passions and got turned into a point of principle where there had to be winners and losers? Before politicians and journalists (like our host here who made his own contributions to raising the stakes) could get a hold of it and, in their own interests, stoke the flames?

I don't know....maybe the organizers would have been adamant that it must be this site and this site alone, and the controversy could not have been avoided. But it seems to me that a little bit of diplomacy and community leadership early in the process would have kept this from turning into the circus it has now become.

Posted by: ScottC3 | August 18, 2010 11:26 PM | Report abuse

ru,

"As I get ready to drift off to sleep I wonder what are the values of American society in 2010?"

The values are in the hearts of those who love their country and their fellow citizens...their politics are of very little moment if they can do that.

Sleep well & good Thursday 2U.

Posted by: tao9 | August 18, 2010 11:28 PM | Report abuse

I have spent the last hour and a half listening and watching as MSNBC celebrated and watched with Richard Engel as the last combat troops leave Iraq and head into Kuwait. My husband, as a vet, was very impressed with their coverage of the end of Iraqi Freedom.

At 8:00 pm pacific time, O'Reilly was talking about the "Cordoba House" and CNN spent about 5 minutes on the troop withdrawal and then switched to the "Cordoba House". As the last troops crossed into Kuwait, after unloading their weapons there was no welcoming committee to celebrate the end of combat.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 18, 2010 11:49 PM | Report abuse

Tao9,

ifthethunderdontgetya compared me, pictorally, to a klansman after my third post. I guess it's a habit with him. I like to think of it as a kind of Godwin's Law, Klan style. Something like: "I was arguing that government is innately corrupt and self-serving and the only way to limit that is to limit the size of government when he went all ifthethunderdontgetya on me and claimed that I was the new incarnation of a Grand Dragon of the KKK!" Pretty soon, you wont even need the description, you'll just say they went ifthethunderdontgetya, or even ifya.

Also, when I see your nick, Tao9, I think of the Dharma Bums.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | August 18, 2010 11:55 PM | Report abuse

"The values are in the hearts of those who love their country and their fellow citizens...their politics are of very little moment if they can do that."

I hope you're right tao, I am very discouraged lately, but I HOPE you are right.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 19, 2010 12:07 AM | Report abuse

This sort of feels like one of those unusual nights at the plumline when we're all just sitting on the veranda, tired from a difficult day's work and being congenial. We've enjoyed the sunset and are just lazily marking the end of summer. I have to say I am missing BG though, he must be on vacation before school starts. Hopefully, he's not streaking naked across Iowa or something.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 19, 2010 12:17 AM | Report abuse

Scott: "I don't know....maybe the organizers would have been adamant that it must be this site and this site alone, and the controversy could not have been avoided. But it seems to me that a little bit of diplomacy and community leadership early in the process would have kept this from turning into the circus it has now become."

I don't know that it's safe to assume there was no outreach. The NYT featured a front page article last December that acknowledges some community discomfort as well as community support and encouragement. The Imam went on Fox with Laura Ingraham after that to discuss the project, and she complimented it. I think that was in March. I don't think this project has been a complete secret, and especially not to the people most impacted...those in the immediate neighborhood.

It wasn't until just a couple of weeks ago that the circus came to town. Obviously, this project has been in the works for some time. The property was purchased just over a year ago, and they began using it as an overflow prayer space at THAT point. So, in all reality, it already is a mosque, for all practical purposes.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/09/nyregion/09mosque.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=cordoba&st=nyt

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 19, 2010 12:37 AM | Report abuse

Ims, thanks for mentioning BG. I've been wondering were he was, and was going to ask if you knew.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 19, 2010 12:40 AM | Report abuse

Also, when I see your nick, Tao9, I think of the Dharma Bums.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | August 18, 2010 11:55 PM |
==========================

That's so cute.

Meanwhile, not one of you GOBP keyboard warriors will admit that Richard Nixon's Southern Strategy is not only alive and well this very day, it is all Roger Ailes and the rest of the dog whistlers have got.

Spare me your fainting spells.
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | August 19, 2010 12:46 AM | Report abuse

"My husband, as a vet, was very impressed with their coverage of the end of Iraqi Freedom."

I agree, but it seems kind of odd to me that the White House is not planning to discuss the withdrawl until the time of the deadline (August 31) that the administration has already managed to beat. If the administration had All the TV networks there with embedded reporters covering the exit of the troops, coupled with some strong messaging from the White House, maybe we would not have been talking about you-know-what around here all day long.

Posted by: Patrick_M | August 19, 2010 12:47 AM | Report abuse

I've posted before that I think the so called Southern Strategy is a myth cooked up to delegitimize Republican victories. The only Presidential election where the electoral margin of victory was such that Southern States could have made an impact was in 1988. And I think Lee Atwater was just claiming credit for a myth created by disappointed lefties. But hey, your mileage may vary

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | August 19, 2010 12:56 AM | Report abuse

Patrick_M, I agree. Where the "heck" were the cameras. And I found it tooooo ironic that MSNBC had the most coverage all things considered. But then maybe on the West Coast we missed the FOX coverage or something. I felt sort of sad actually that as the last combat troops passed into Kuwait no one was there to greet them.

We have very close friends whose son is on his fourth tour in Afghanistan as a helicopter mechanic and they are not feeling very encouraged by everything that's going on. Hopefully, he'll be home soon.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 19, 2010 12:59 AM | Report abuse

Patrick,

Two thoughts:

They still have troops to withdraw to meet the 50k agreement before the end of the month, about another 600 I believe. So while all combat brigades are withdrawn, it really isn't quite over yet.

I'd bet they did this withdrawal tonight under the cover of darkness and without a ton of fanfare for the security of the troops on the move...IED's and all that.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 19, 2010 1:02 AM | Report abuse

"The only Presidential election where the electoral margin of victory was such that Southern States could have made an impact was in 1988."

Florida in 2000 was not important? You do understand that there is a thing called the Electoral College that places disproportionate power in the hands of lightly populated rural states, and that the party identity of Southern Senators and Representatives also matters in our political system?

Posted by: Patrick_M | August 19, 2010 1:07 AM | Report abuse

Ims, NBC News was the only imbed. Again, I think troop security was a big consideration in how this was covered. Iraq is not stable by a long-shot.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 19, 2010 1:15 AM | Report abuse

Ummmm, according to leftist belief, Bush lost that election, ergo, so called Southern Strategy remains fevered leftist myth.

And as far as Senators, Govenors, etc. of the South, to paraphrase that genius Joe Biden, three words: Nelson, Pryor, and Lincoln.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | August 19, 2010 1:21 AM | Report abuse

"But then maybe on the West Coast we missed the FOX coverage or something."

lmsinca, I doubt there was any coverage there to miss. In fact, I expect Fox commentators will likely criticize the level of coverage at the NBC networks as being nothing more than positive spin for Obama.

I hope your friend's son is home safely from Afghanistan soon.

"They still have troops to withdraw to meet the 50k agreement before the end of the month, about another 600 I believe. So while all combat brigades are withdrawn, it really isn't quite over yet.

I'd bet they did this withdrawal tonight under the cover of darkness and without a ton of fanfare for the security of the troops on the move...IED's and all that."

suekzoo1, I know that they need to get another few hundred troops out, but I still think they could have found a way to line things up to better advantage. The major withdrawal was televised tonight, so why not discuss it tomorrow?

As for the security and low fanfare, that's a potentially valid point, but if they could have Engl riding with the troops and Maddow in the Green Zone talking to the commanders, it seems to me that they could have gotten in another half dozen cameras and reporters from all networks, and then started to discuss the withdrawl immediately on the next day.

Yes, it happened under cover of darkness, but that also happened to be in prime time over here, and from the coverage on the one network that had access to the story (NBC) it doesn't seem like the primary motivation was to keep it completely secret until it was over.

Posted by: Patrick_M | August 19, 2010 1:23 AM | Report abuse

sue, I'm sure you're probably right, I just found the entire thing a little sad. I think it says a lot about this war that we are not celebrating the fact that our combat troops are coming home.

I think maybe I just need a long break from politics and war and the economy.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 19, 2010 1:26 AM | Report abuse

My Biden joke would've worked had I included Landrieu. Oh well.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | August 19, 2010 1:30 AM | Report abuse

"Ummmm, according to leftist belief, Bush lost that election, ergo, so called Southern Strategy remains fevered leftist myth."

Ummmm, according to rightwing belief, Bush won that election, ergo, so called Southern Strategy remains factual.

"And as far as Senators, Govenors, etc. of the South, to paraphrase that genius Joe Biden, three words: Nelson, Pryor, and Lincoln."

No one said that the Southern strategy ensures the election of zero Democrats in Southern states, but instead that the dominance of that region shifted from the Democrats to the Republicans. That is what has happened.

And if you actually knew any history, you'd know that Lee Atwater was not the first Republican strategist to candidly discuss the use of the Southern Strategy. Read "The Emerging Republican Majority," which was published in 1969 and written by Nixon's political strategist Kevin Phillips. He made the term famous, but it was already in use in Republican circles before that time.

Posted by: Patrick_M | August 19, 2010 1:42 AM | Report abuse

"I think maybe I just need a long break from politics and war and the economy."

Yeah, I know the feeling. If only those things would take a break from us!

Posted by: Patrick_M | August 19, 2010 1:46 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, Ims, I hear you and felt the same way..a bit sad. The thing is, Iraq is fragile, and there is no certainty that it won't blow up in the near future. The elections were months ago, but there is still no seated government. I noted Richard Engel saying that the citizens are nervous because there isn't a lot of confidence that the government can deliver security and services.

That's another reason that I think there was no fanfare. can we call Iraq a "success?" The surge was about providing space for political reconciliation, and that has not occured. The optics would be horrid if the combat troops left with a big splash only to have the whole thing devolve soon after.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 19, 2010 1:46 AM | Report abuse

So earlier, Sarah Palin defended Dr. Laura's First Amendment Rights to use the N-word.

OUCH!

Sarah Palin and Motherhood
September 2, 2008

I am extremely disappointed in the choice of Sarah Palin as the Vice Presidential candidate of the Republican Party. I will still vote for Senator McCain, because I am very concerned about having a fundamental leftist, especially one who is a marvelous orator, as President.

...

I’m stunned - couldn’t the Republican Party find one competent female with adult children to run for Vice President with McCain? I realize his advisors probably didn’t want a “mature” woman, as the Democrats keep harping on his age. But really, what kind of role model is a woman whose fifth child was recently born with a serious issue, Down Syndrome, and then goes back to the job of Governor within days of the birth?

http://www.drlaurablog.com/2008/09/02/sarah-palin-and-motherhood/

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 19, 2010 2:03 AM | Report abuse

Have you guys ever noticed that at other sites they do a late night music video. Well I'm giving y'all a link to my all time favorite song. It's been done by dozens of artists but this one's my pick for the best and somehow it seems fitting tonight.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_NpxTWbovE

And BTW Patrick_M, I've appreciated your comments and hope you stick around.

As always Sue, you're my BFF, LOL.

Posted by: lmsinca | August 19, 2010 2:03 AM | Report abuse

Have a good night all !!!!!!!!

Posted by: lmsinca | August 19, 2010 2:06 AM | Report abuse

Love you, Ims! :o)

Thanks for the video! I really enjoyed kd's performance at the Olympics last year. She is just marvelous.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 19, 2010 2:10 AM | Report abuse

"And BTW Patrick_M, I've appreciated your comments and hope you stick around."

Thank you very much, and the feeling is mutual.

I am generally more interested in policy than in politics, so I comment fairly regularly at Ezra Klein's blog, but with the election season heating up, I'll probably stick around Plum Line too.

Posted by: Patrick_M | August 19, 2010 2:21 AM | Report abuse

yeah that is true, major brands do give out free samples of their popular health products best place to check is http://bit.ly/bf1xD8 send it to your friends

Posted by: peggybrad19 | August 19, 2010 2:48 AM | Report abuse

Best place to find quality quality bankruptcy info online is http://bit.ly/cpmRHo

Posted by: dalejohn19 | August 19, 2010 5:02 AM | Report abuse

Troll writes:

"Ummmm, according to leftist belief, Bush lost that election, ergo, so called Southern Strategy remains fevered leftist myth."

Except that "leftist" Michael Steele flatly acknowledged that the GOP has been employing such a strategy for four decades.

Posted by: Greg Sargent | August 19, 2010 6:35 AM | Report abuse

"I think the so called Southern Strategy is a myth cooked up to delegitimize Republican victories"

Ever hear of a guy named Richard Nixon?

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 6:56 AM | Report abuse

As for the Iraq drawdown, normally I'd advise the Dems to trumpet this to the heavens. Problem is, we have NO IDEA what Iraq is going to become, or how soon. They still don't have a national government and it seems that the carnage is ramping up again. Under the circumstances I think the best Obama can do is say that he did what he said he would do: end the combat mission and bring most of the troops home.

As I said when it actually mattered, we will be paying for the Iraq Debacle for decades, in more ways than we can imagine.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 7:00 AM | Report abuse

The Republican plan to idiofy the country continues:

31% of Republicans believe Barack Obama is Muslim

Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0810/41248.html#ixzz0x357stGn

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 7:04 AM | Report abuse

"Did you get pears?"

"We'll discuss it inside."

Posted by: bernielatham | August 19, 2010 7:20 AM | Report abuse

bernielatham:

I'm not sold yet on that show but that scene was priceless. I told my wife that couple would be us down the road.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 7:23 AM | Report abuse

@wb - Gratifying to see someone saw that bit. Brilliantly written, cast and acted. As it happens, I told my wife that WAS us. There's a lot I really love about this show and where I do love it, the creators have gone that extra distance out of artistic integrity. I thought this scene one of the best examples of that.

Are you familiar with Dennis Potter's work?

Posted by: bernielatham | August 19, 2010 7:37 AM | Report abuse

Controversial proposal of the day:

The Southern Strategy, whether real or imagined, has been far more beneficial to the Dems than to the R's. Dems rely heavily on blacks voting in vastly disproportionate numbers for them. Without such huge percentages of blacks voting for D's, they would rarely if ever win presidential elections. Such a Southern Strategy is surely responsible for alienating at least some blacks and driving them into the arms of Dems

And to the extent that any southern whites actually do vote for R's out of racial animus, expecting R's to turn back the clock or something, they've been duped. It hasn't happpened and it isn't ever going to happen.

So D's have gotten the best of all possible worlds. Government approved and enforced discrimination (the kind that D's don't approve of, anyway) is a dead letter and will never be brought back by the R's, and the D's still have a near monopoly on an electoral demographic that they simply cannot do without.

D's should absolutely celebrate the Southern Strategy!

Posted by: ScottC3 | August 19, 2010 7:45 AM | Report abuse

Re the stat from Pew you note above...it seems almost impossibly cynical that the modern rightwing propaganda enterprise (here, mainly FOX and talk radio) would so enthuiastically set about to create a misinformed electorate. An earlier study I've noted here before found that not only were FOX viewers much more likely to hold false notions about Iraq but that the more they watched FOX the more misinformed they became.

Posted by: bernielatham | August 19, 2010 7:49 AM | Report abuse

Bernie:

"Are you familiar with Dennis Potter's work?"

No. Please recommend something.

RE: the No-Nothings and GOP-TV. The Republican propaganda program is obviously "successful" but can some Republican please explain how misinformed citizens add to the health of the body politic? I can't even conceive of a justification.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 8:01 AM | Report abuse

George Will lectures on lectures...http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/18/AR2010081804691.html?hpid=opinionsbox1

There is no one in all of Washington political life who has less familiarity with ou-meel-ee-tay than this fellow and there are very few who would feel so comfortable in a powdered wig. And one would not be advised to accept his re-write of the history of the origins and causes of the Intifada (literally, "shaking off").

Posted by: bernielatham | August 19, 2010 8:06 AM | Report abuse

"D's should absolutely celebrate the Southern Strategy!"

Scott: I have been applauding the GOP's Southern Strategery. Insult, offend and alienate everyone in the country but for elderly white males in the Deep South. Fine with me. The problem is that the Southern Strategery has evolved into attempting -- with some success, as we see -- to make the entire country ignorant. And THAT is why we can't solve any of our national problems.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 8:07 AM | Report abuse

Scott:

Energy and climate change is the perfect example. We in the U.S. can't even discuss how to resolve our urgent energy/environmental problems because the Republicans -- boosted by Rush and GOP-TV and doing the bidding of their Big Oil masters -- have rendered the American people (too many anyhow) so ignorant that they don't even believe that climate change is occurring. Meanwhile, the world is coming apart at the seams. The current GOP's Southern Strategery is not only anti-American, it is anti-human.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 8:14 AM | Report abuse

Headline at Ha'aretz this morning...

"UN report: IDF barring Gazans' access to farms, fishing zones

Humanitarian affairs office: Israel restricts entry to 17% of Gaza lands, 85% of beachfront zone, enforces restrictions with live fire."
http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/un-report-idf-barring-gazans-access-to-farms-fishing-zones-1.309022

Posted by: bernielatham | August 19, 2010 8:16 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne:

"Insult, offend and alienate everyone in the country but for elderly white males in the Deep South."

Wow. Who knew that elderly white males in the Deep South so often comprised a majority of the electorate? How do those nasty rednecks manage to get registered in places like Ohio, Pennsylvania, Utah, Montana, etc? Maybe they put on dresses as a disguise, which would help explain how nearly half of all women voted for Bush in 2004, despite being insulted, alienated, and offended.

Crazy, huh?

Posted by: ScottC3 | August 19, 2010 8:24 AM | Report abuse

@wb - Scott skips over the genesis and purpose (maybe it's all imaginary), minimizes the destructiveness of it to civil society (heck, Dems gained) and ends up wishing to discuss a proposition of the following nature:

"Now, Jews not only have their own sovereign homeland and have developed the most powerful nation as their key ally and have increased the land they hold through settlement and have set to a very effective PR campaign to root out anti-Semitism in the world. Much of this would not have come into being had the Holocaust not happened. Therefore, such a proposition would go, Jews should celebrate the Holocaust.

Posted by: bernielatham | August 19, 2010 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Perfect pairing. Palin defends Dr. Laura... http://www.salon.com/news/politics/sarah_palin/index.html?story=/opinion/walsh/politics/2010/08/18/sarah_palin_defends_dr_laura

Posted by: bernielatham | August 19, 2010 8:30 AM | Report abuse

@ wbgonne: "Ever hear of a guy named Richard Nixon?"

You mean the guy who first put enforcement teeth (and some might say "quotas") into Affirmative Action policies? And created the EPA and OSHA?

Not to mention instituting wage and price controls in an attempt to micromanage the economy?

I've heard of him.

"but can some Republican please explain how misinformed citizens add to the health of the body politic? I can't even conceive of a justification."

Clearly, it doesn't. However, misinformation (or, to be kind, incomplete and superficial analysis) is what's going to come from advertisements and television and radio shows. The nature and the slant may be different, but most conservatives don't see Keith Olberman in any different a light than liberals regard Sean Hannity. And say what you like about either of those guys, I think they are both perfectly sincere. They don't intend to mislead the electorate: this is the stuff they actually believe.

In the end, there is no idiot ray in the television, and no secret frequency on the radio that turns people into mind numbed zombies (i.e., people who disagree with me on important issues about which I am obviously right). Either the appeal of the presentation, or the compelling nature of the arguments, or the catering to people's irrational fears, hopes and dreams--is better, for a time, on side or the other. Rush Limbaugh is the most listened to talk show on the radio, and, like it or not, it's not because he has a zombie ray. Fox is the most watched news network, and it's not because Roger Ailes sent out his minions to force folks to watch at gunpoint.

Despite those things, they hardly have a monopoly on public thought. Democrats recently won the presidency, the house and the senate, with huge majorities. If elections are lost in 2010 and 2012, it's because it's theirs to lose. If the public is being misinformed, Democrats have the bully pulpit and at least a few cable networks (MSNBC, CurrentTV, and definitely have toe-holds at CNN and on NPR, even if they don't always set the agenda). There are lots of liberal blogs and information networks. If liberals could present the facts without alienating the dubious bitter clingers out there, maybe people would be better informed.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 19, 2010 8:33 AM | Report abuse

Scott:

You must have missed my follow-up post where I explained how the new Southern Strategery is to turn the entire nation into elderly white Southern males. When you get the first black president you're halfway there.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 8:37 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of "pairing"... two or so weeks ago as we moved into our new building, I called up the elevator in the early evening after working hard all day (and previous days) and was greeted by an attractive lady about 35. Here's the exact conversation (I was very tired):
Her: Moving in?
Me: Yes
Her: Single?
Me: No
Her: New York?
Me: Recently, yes.
Her: Jewish?
Me: No
Her: Catholic?
Me: No
Door opens at my floor. None of this made me uncomfortable though I recognized my exhaustion had dimmed my zest and capacity for repartee. But I wasn't many steps down the hallway before I recognized how much information this lady had gotten out of me in a matter of about ten seconds.

Last night, I found out she's a professional match-maker.

Posted by: bernielatham | August 19, 2010 8:37 AM | Report abuse

All, Morning Roundup posted:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/08/the_morning_plum_77.html

And Bernie, are you done moving? (you can answer in the new thread if you feel like it)

Posted by: Greg Sargent | August 19, 2010 8:41 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne:

"Republicans -- boosted by Rush and GOP-TV and doing the bidding of their Big Oil masters -- have rendered the American people (too many anyhow) so ignorant that they don't even believe that climate change is occurring."

And what about all those people who are so ignorant they think that climate change is actually a recent phenomenon? Or who think that man can actually stop the climate from changing? I bet those nefarious Republicans are responsible for that too. Is there no end to their evil ways?

Posted by: ScottC3 | August 19, 2010 8:42 AM | Report abuse

Two cents: I understand the dilemma but I'm very seriously pissed at Dean and Reid (and conversely, extremely proud of Ted Olson and Obama and others like them)

Posted by: bernielatham | August 19, 2010 8:42 AM | Report abuse

@ScottC

Thanks for answering my questions last night. I appreciate you from the old site. Even though we often disagree you don't do it disagreeably.

As far as your answers we are largely in agreement with perhaps this one exception.

"It's not clear to me how, in this instance, one must necessarily negate the other. Is there something about the sensitivities of Muslims that requires the project to be built close to GZ such that one side's sensitivities must lose out?"

I don't thing the Muslim's sensitivities are tied so much to that specific location.
However this whole uproar points out one thing clearly to all..Muslims..and any thinking non-Muslim. A large % of Americans still conflate Al Qaeda with Islam. A large % of Americans..the vast majority in fact are ignorant about Islam...again ignorant in the literal not pejorative sense. As I posted earlier in this particular instance we're not even smart enough to distinguish between Sufi Muslims and Wahhabi Muslims. This is the equivalent of conflating Catholicism and Southern Baptists among Christians.

As to how this brouhaha started..it's pretty much agreed now that one of the most hateful people on the planet Pam Gellar ginned this thing up with her website. Certain pandering politicians most notably Newt and Sister Sarah then proceeded to carry the hateful water for Geller. Remember as recently as March "lefty" snark attack...Laura Ingraham interviews the Imam about the project and pronounced it OK.

A final thought about Muslim sensibilities. If this were the ONLY incident of Islamophobia perhaps things would be a little different. Then it would be clear to Muslims that this was INDEED about 9/11 victims. But this is not occuring in a vacuum. Almost all Muslim construction is grinding to a halt all over the nation and morons have planted pipe bombs outside a Mosque in Jacksonville Fl as well as vandalized other Mosques. There is a growing element of violence in some of this backlash that is very disturbing.

Perhaps with an open mind we can understand WHY Muslims might view this as an attack on their religion since it's not just contained to NYC.

At any rate..thanks for the thoughtful snark free response Scott. For what it's worth, I agree with about 90% of what you posted.

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 19, 2010 8:45 AM | Report abuse

@ScottC3: "Wow. Who knew that elderly white males in the Deep South so often comprised a majority of the electorate?"

What do you mean "deep south"? Anything outside of New York, Chicago, Boston and L.A. is a no-man's land of Klan members, BBQ joints, and soiled Sarah Palin posters.

"How do those nasty rednecks manage to get registered in places like Ohio, Pennsylvania, Utah, Montana, etc?"

Because Republicans own Diebold, and all the voting machines are wired so that the Bilderberg Group can choose who our puppet president is going to be. Nobody actually votes for Republicans, so it's always election fraud. ;)

"Maybe they put on dresses as a disguise, which would help explain how nearly half of all women voted for Bush in 2004, despite being insulted, alienated, and offended."

Those women are forced to vote for Republicans under threat of violence by their brutish, neanderthal husbands who only let them put on shoes and leave the kitchen once every two years--to vote for Republicans.

BTW, I just ran across this bit of propaganda (a trailer for it) by some more of those racist, Tea Party types. Check it out!

http://ace.mu.nu/archives/304622.php

Heh.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 19, 2010 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Kevin:

Richard Nixon invented the Southern Strategy. That's why I mentioned him to Scott. I am quite familiar with his moderate record on domestic matters. Nixon would have been driven out of today's Talibanesque GOP in 5 minutes but for one thing: Nixon would not be moderate today on domestic affairs. 2010 Nixon would be to the Right of HUAC Nixon and would, no doubt, be leading the charge against the Not-A-Mosque.

As for the media: the propagandizing news cycle is driven primarily by the 24/7 TV news channels, as augmented by Talk Radio and the blogosphere. Fox News is GOP-TV, 100% Right Wing propaganda. Almost every second of that network is dedicated to elevating the GOP and Conservatives and undermining Democrats and Liberals. CNN, desperate for Fox's ratings, has chosen to largely emulate Fox. Those are the only two 24/7 TV news networks. MSNBC is a part-time outfit that has no actual news coverage at all, just weekday opinionators, followed by Inmate Life all weekend.

GOP-TV is what it is. The solution is for there to be an alternative. Right now there isn't any which is why Fox so often drives the news.

Personally, I don't care whether Hannity actually believes all he says or if he is exploiting people for pecuniary gain (the GOP way, after all). Hannity alone is not the problem; it is the propaganda value from endlessly repeating and recycling fake stories that makes GOP-TV so effective. That is how propaganda works. Simplify and repeat. Idiofy the nation. The question you might ask is why the GOP traffics in ignorance.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 8:53 AM | Report abuse

@Bernie

"Two cents: I understand the dilemma but I'm very seriously pissed at Dean and Reid (and conversely, extremely proud of Ted Olson and Obama and others like them)"

As our ole buddy Tena used to say...WORD UP!

Or as they say on other sites...FANNED.

Or as I might say...you took the words right out of my keyboard! :-)

BTW I join with lmsinca and Suek in wondering if BG is just on vacation. I think he might be exploring the U.P. or upstate N.Y.

Has anyone heard what happened to Tena.
I used to laugh at her battling the trolls. But that was back in the day when we really had trolls....now we are blessed with a growing contingent of conservatives who are rational and can offer more than gratuitous insults...

Thanks to Kevin W...Scott C...Troll McWingnut..SBJ Tao9 and the rest of you guys who can again disagree without being disagreeable...without being disagreeable.

It's a large reason why I consider this my blog of choice...that and Greg's journalistic integrity. I understand those who question Greg's views but I have never seen him lose his integrity.

Posted by: rukidding7 | August 19, 2010 8:55 AM | Report abuse

"And what about all those people who are so ignorant they think that climate change is actually a recent phenomenon? Or who think that man can actually stop the climate from changing?"

I rest my case.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 8:55 AM | Report abuse

@bernielatham: "Therefore, such a proposition would go, Jews should celebrate the Holocaust."

The "southern strategy" = the holocaust, eh?

Hmm.

@ScottC3: "And what about all those people who are so ignorant they think that climate change is actually a recent phenomenon?"

They don't. They just think that this time, it's us. And they have good reasons to think that, just as many of the skeptics have good reasons to doubt anthropogenic climate change.

Unfortunately, the reality is that renewable energy and particularly some of the practical infrastructure of a world of electric cars and solar panels would be a Very Good Thing, whether there is anthropogenic climate change or not. However, we're so deeply invested in the Other being Wrong, that rather than work together on more efficient electrical transmission and storage and creating the infrastructure for electrical vehicles and general electrical recharging, you have to be Wrong and I have to be Right and we've got to fight.

Oh, and there are a lot of wealthy people interested in creating an easy-to-manipulate carbon market, as a place to create the next financial bubble and sell AAA-rated derivatives to pension funds out of. And then get out before it all goes belly up.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 19, 2010 9:00 AM | Report abuse

Kevin:

People generally are susceptible to demagoguery. That is why it works. Fear. Hate. Division. Greed. They are all very effective motivators but they depend in large part on ignorance. And that explains why the Southern Strategery requires disinformation of 24/7 TV news calibre. Hence, GOP-TV.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 9:00 AM | Report abuse

"They don't. They just think that this time, it's us. And they have good reasons to think that, just as many of the skeptics have good reasons to doubt anthropogenic climate change. Unfortunately, the reality is that renewable energy and particularly some of the practical infrastructure of a world of electric cars and solar panels would be a Very Good Thing, whether there is anthropogenic climate change or not. However, we're so deeply invested in the Other being Wrong, that rather than work together on more efficient electrical transmission and storage and creating the infrastructure for electrical vehicles and general electrical recharging, you have to be Wrong and I have to be Right and we've got to fight."

Some people say the earth is round. Others disagree. Let's split the difference and call it an ellipse. That shouldn't interfere much with our science.

The primary line of defense against action on climate change is denying its existence. We haven't even reached the point of discussing the pros and cons of various solutions because the Right won't acknowledge that the problem even exists. Pretty tough to solve problems that Republicans say don't exist, no matter the bipartisanship of the Other. You are engaging in false equivalency if you are suggesting that Democrats & Liberals are equally culpable as Republicans & Conservatives in failing to address climate change.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Bernie:

"Scott skips over the genesis and purpose (maybe it's all imaginary), minimizes the destructiveness of it to civil society (heck, Dems gained) and ends up wishing to discuss a proposition of the following nature:"

I see you've embraced a new method of "ignoring" me...address your responses as if you are talking to someone else. Very clever!

In any event, I also ignored the history of slavery, the Civil War, Plessy v Ferguson, and the winner of the Super Bowl in 1970 because, well, that wasn't what I was talking about. I was talking about the political benefits of a political strategy.

As for your holocaust analogy, another howler from the man whos makes such an issue of fine distinctions. Sure, Bernie...a tongue-in-cheek declaration that Dems should be happy about the Southern Strategy is EXACTLY like telling Israelis they should be happy about the holocaust. Keen insight.

I could go through a technical analysis to show how the analogy is a false one even on the merits, but that really wouldn't matter, would it? You'd probably just ignore it. Heh.

(BTW, you do have a bit of a thing for raising the specter of Nazi Germany when trying to demonize those who disagree with you, don't you? You would do well to expand the horizons of your imagintion and your analogies.)

Posted by: ScottC3 | August 19, 2010 9:39 AM | Report abuse

@wbgonne: "Some people say the earth is round. Others disagree. Let's split the difference and call it an ellipse. That shouldn't interfere much with our science."

I know. You have to be Right, others have to be Wrong. I hope that Rightness consoles you in our coal-and-diesel fueled petroleum-based future.

"Pretty tough to solve problems that Republicans say don't exist,"

There's no other valid reason to pursue renewable energy except for doomsday climate change scenarios?

"You are engaging in false equivalency if you are suggesting that Democrats & Liberals are equally culpable as Republicans & Conservatives in failing to address climate change."

Not climate change: renewable energy. Clean energy. There are plenty of arguments for energy efficiency, clean energy, etc., that don't have anything to do with climate change, and don't require that anybody agrees with or disagrees with doomsday global warming scenarios, no matter how foolish, short-sighted or ignorant you think they are for not accepting the scientific consensus.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 19, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

[Patrick_M sneered: "If we must suspend the First Amendment within a certain perimeter surrounding "hallowed ground," what (exactly) is the correct distance beyond which the US Constitution shall again pertain? I would like to know the precise distance, and I'd also like to understand the means by which such a distance is computed.]

Patrick asks without a hint of irony?

Sharia law enforcement authorities in Dearbornistan are working these details out precisely.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fEPod-hxD7g

Don't be a sneering apologist for Islamo-supremacism your whole life, Pat.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | August 19, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

ruk:

"I understand those who question Greg's views but I have never seen him lose his integrity."


How about last night's claim that he has "never, ever" called opponents of the m/Ic/w "un-American"? I think I have put together a pretty strong, logical case that he has done precisely that. Which in my mind raises serious questions about his integrity.

Posted by: ScottC3 | August 19, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

@wbgonne: "People generally are susceptible to demagoguery. That is why it works. Fear. Hate. Division. Greed. They are all very effective motivators but they depend in large part on ignorance. And that explains why the Southern Strategery requires disinformation of 24/7 TV news calibre. Hence, GOP-TV."

There is also MSNBC. And the Daily Show. During the 2004 U.S. presidential election, the Daily Show "received more male viewers in the 18-34 year old age demographic than Nightline, Meet the Press, Hannity & Colmes and all of the evening news broadcasts" (Wikipedia). Still, Fox is one network. Talk radio is almost entirely conservative, but is only one way of getting information. There are plenty of sources, some of them just a few clicks up or down the dial from Fox, that aren't GOP-TV.

I just listened to NPR this morning (to make sure it was still there), and I was greeted with several stories about the anti-Muslim racism of Republicans and conservatives. The truth is out there, people.

Point being, there are plenty of alternatives to Fox news and talk radio. The disinformation strategy is apparently voluntary--you only get fed a steady stream of right wing propaganda if you want it.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 19, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

"There are plenty of arguments for energy efficiency, clean energy, etc., that don't have anything to do with climate change, and don't require that anybody agrees with or disagrees with doomsday global warming scenarios"

Really. What are they? And are those reasons more powerful than the destruction of the planet? If not, what in the world makes you think those other reasons will persuade the Climate Change Deniers to move aggressively away from fossil fuels? The refusal to acknowledge climate change is not the cause of the political paralysis, it is the result of the propagandized opposition to moving away from fossil fuels.

Al Gore is correct. When politics fails there must be action in the streets. Look at how much impact the Teabaggers have had just by making themselves nuisances?

One last word, Kevin: I appreciate you apparent willingness to discuss issues. However, sometimes -- like on climate change -- one side is right and the other is wrong. Simple as that. Moral relatavism has no place in science. If we can't even agree on science how in the world can we agree on politics or policies? Until the GOP renounces its idiofication campaign there is scant hope for bi-partisanship. The GOP must be crushed and then reform itself under Moderate leadership before it will contribute anything to national problem solving. Glossing over the anti-rationality and the demagoguery serves no purpose. Like lipstick on a pig.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Kevin:

"They don't. "

Well, at least not all of them. I realize that. I was just throwing wbgonne's own simplistic generalizations back at him.

"However, we're so deeply invested in the Other being Wrong, that rather than work together...."

Two things. First, I am not at all invested in the Other being wrong, at least about the proposition regarding AGW. I am skeptical, I admit, about the A aspect, but I know my skepticism could be wrong. What I am not wrong about, however, is that the mere fact of AGW (if it is a fact) does not in and of itself justify most of the policy preferences of the AGW alarmists.

Second, I find the whole "work together" thing to be an annoying platitude. There is nothing whatsoever about skepticism, out-and-out denial, or even irrational investment in the "Other-is-wrong" certainty that prevents people who want "cleaner" or alternative energy sources or products from working with each other to realize what they want. They can and should do what inventors, entrepenuers, and forward-thinking people have done since forever...invest their time, energy, and resources into accomplishing their goals. They don't need my belief, my approval, or my cooperation. Have at it.

Posted by: ScottC3 | August 19, 2010 11:03 AM | Report abuse

@wbgonne: "Really. What are they?"

Jobs, the economy, economic productivity--greater output for less input is almost always a net positive. If you have do twice as much for the same amount of energy, or do the same amount of work for half the energy, it's a net positive in every direction, but especially in economic productivity.

Unless global warming threatens to destroy to the planet, there's no problems with pollution? There are health, environmental, and quality of life issues regarding more or less pollution where renewable and clean energy would be of great value, irregardless of anthropogenic climate change.

"One last word, Kevin: I appreciate you apparent willingness to discuss issues. However, sometimes -- like on climate change -- one side is right and the other is wrong."

Again, I hope your admirably principled stand for the Unshakeable and Undeniable Truth of Anthropogenic Climate Change consoles you in our deepwater drilling, oil-drenched future. All or nothing positions (no matter how justified) do, occasionally, end up with all of us getting nothing.

@ScottC3: "Second, I find the whole 'work together' thing to be an annoying platitude."

Fair enough. The "work together" thing is really my personal fantasy, like hoping Santa Clause is real. I know it's not going to happen. But, hope springs eternal.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 19, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Kevin:

You are suggesting that respect for science is a hindrance to rational policy? You're joking, I hope. As to your proposal to assume that Climate Change is fictitious, but then commit ourselves to Green Energy nonetheless you are being preposterous. The Right Wing doesn't want to move away from fossil fuels and won't unless and until the Invisible Hand dictates that there is more money for their corporate masters in Green Energy than in fossil fuels (which, of course, won't happen until NYC is under two feet of water). Doubt it? Just ask Scott.

BTW: This is yet another example of the rot in the Conservative movement. They have taken relatavism so far that have even applied it even to science when it suits their ideological propensities.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 19, 2010 11:42 AM | Report abuse

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