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Posted at 6:42 PM ET, 02/15/2011

Happy Hour Roundup

By Greg Sargent

* Obama vows to veto the House GOP's proposed $60 billion in spending cuts.

* Organizing for America is ramping up a new push to sell the stimulus, health reform and other Obama policies to small business people across the country, a new organizing frontier for Obama's political operation.

* USA Today says Obama's budget plan is "potentially a massive job-creation engine, with plans to generate millions of them by repairing and expanding highways, bridges and railways."

* Steve Benen, on the standoff over jobs:

I'd hoped at this point we'd see a credible debate underway between two competing visions on how to create jobs. As of this week, only one vision showed up.

* Dave Weigel convincingly explains why birthers adore Sarah Palin. Cliff notes version: It's all those hints that Obama lacks "faith in America and its institutions."

* The left's campaign against the House GOP new anti-abortion push is taking on a feeling of real urgency.

* Chris Bowers and Sam Stein think the White House is edging towards an aggressive defense of Social Security.

* Dems continue trying to tar the House GOP with the specter of Newt as Steny Hoyer places full blame on the GOP for the government shutdown that hasn't happened yet.

* Eric Cantor's response: "Any time that we propose a spending cut, it seems that Chuck Schumer, Dick Durbin, Harry Reid and others scream, 'shutdown.'"

* The Post's Dan Eggen weighs in with a big takeout on Think Progress's story on dirty tricks targeting foes of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Keep an eye on this one.

* Gallup finds that a plurality thinks we're spending too much on defense.

* Which makes you wonder why the White House refrained from laying down the budgetary law with the Defense Department.

* Jason Linkins asks an awfully good question about the South Dakota legislator's defense of that defending-unborn-children bill:

Is there a localized outbreak of women having their abdomens beaten by people who want to avoid paying child support?

* Mike Bloomberg predicts Republicans will succeed in defunding the health law, but warns that merely "saying no is not a solution."

* Shirley Sherrod explains her lawsuit against Andrew Breitbart.

* And here's today's installment of the Michele Bachmann chronicles, in which she criticizes Michelle Obama's promotion of tax breaks for breast pumps because it could lead to the "nanny state":

"I've given birth to five babies and I breast fed every single one of these babies."

Yep, case closed. What else is happening?

By Greg Sargent  | February 15, 2011; 6:42 PM ET
Categories:  Happy Hour Roundup, House GOPers, Tea Party, abortion, budget, deficit  
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Comments

"* Obama vows to veto the House GOP's proposed $60 billion in spending cuts."

"* Dems continue trying to tar the House GOP with the specter of Newt as Steny Hoyer places full blame on the GOP for the government shutdown that hasn't happened yet.

* Eric Cantor's response: "Any time that we propose a spending cut, it seems that Chuck Schumer, Dick Durbin, Harry Reid and others scream, 'shutdown.'""

Pardon my question, I mean no offense by it. Conventional wisdom says Republicans lose if there is a shutdown. Two part question, will Republicans blink? If not, how long will the shutdown be?

If anything I wrote causes offense to be taken, I apologize.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 15, 2011 6:56 PM | Report abuse

The cost of health care is akin to the 8-gazillion (not 800) pound gorilla in the room.

The "union" most in need of busting consists of the allied forces that retain the current model of delivering and paying for health care, consisting of the drug industry, the hospital/health delivery industry, especially the many "businessmen" who hold medical degrees and purport to be in the healing profession, and the insurance industry.

smd

Posted by: smd1234 | February 15, 2011 6:57 PM | Report abuse

"I'd hoped at this point we'd see a credible debate underway between two competing visions on how to create jobs. As of this week, only one vision showed up."


Only not in the way he thinks. Unintentional hilarity. Almost as funny as that USA Today nonsense.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 15, 2011 6:58 PM | Report abuse

A sampling of headlines from RCP:


President Kicks the Can One More Time

The President's Budget Is Disastrous

A Budget Utterly Detached From Reality

The Cynical & Unrealistic White House Budget

A Budget That Ducks Tough Choices

Obama's Budget: Dead on Arrival

Left Not Happy With Obama Budget Either


I must admit that I don't know much about the 'bama budget but it don't sound good.

Posted by: battleground51 | February 15, 2011 7:15 PM | Report abuse

It's not really "localized" (I could only find one pregnant woman stabbed in South Dakota where only the fetus was killed) but isn't one too many? You can read just some of the horrors of Forced Abortions here:

http://www.clinicquotes.com/site/story.php?id=76

Posted by: clawrence12 | February 15, 2011 7:15 PM | Report abuse

From Gallup:

Overall, 39% of Americans say the U.S. spends too much on defense, 22% too little, and 35% say defense spending is about right.

So, 57% of Americans believe we are spending just the right amount on defense OR not enough.

Only 39% complain that we are spending too much. A clear minority.

That's the real story.

Posted by: battleground51 | February 15, 2011 7:44 PM | Report abuse

Most people have little clue how much we spend on defense. They hear the constant propaganda that suggests defense is our biggest expenditure.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 15, 2011 7:58 PM | Report abuse

@bg51...So 61% of people think we are spending the right amount or TOO MUCH on "defense". Isn't that the real story? A clear plurality (which is what Greg said) favor less spending.

Posted by: srw3 | February 15, 2011 8:00 PM | Report abuse

@qb: Defense, including veterans benefits and healthcare and portion of interest on borrowed money for defense take up more than 50% of discretionary spending, especially if you include the off budget Bush wars....

Posted by: srw3 | February 15, 2011 8:11 PM | Report abuse

srw, the government spends all the money you aren't counting, too. Defense is far less than 50% of the total. It's a deception to pretend otherwise.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 15, 2011 8:19 PM | Report abuse

About time the CoC story gets some legs. Here's to hoping it continues to grow.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 15, 2011 8:20 PM | Report abuse

Well, in the latest Harper's its reported that Defense spending is up 80% from 2000-*not* including Iraq and Afghanistan. That's a pretty hefty increase in a decade, dontcha think?

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | February 15, 2011 8:43 PM | Report abuse

I agree completely with smd1234 @ 1857

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 8:46 PM | Report abuse

defense spending is what failing empires do

It is the default stimulus, it is the conservative position, we got here this way (I too love the USS Constitution) so we don't change horses in mid-stream. Problem is, the stream changed course.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 8:58 PM | Report abuse

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says recent opposition protests in Iranian cities are "going nowhere"

What a tragedy. To the right wing Christian nutters, we know you because history is filled with zealots. The Christian Republic of America will never happen.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 9:05 PM | Report abuse

"What a tragedy. To the right wing Christian nutters, we know you because history is filled with zealots. The Christian Republic of America will never happen."

Shrink, if you don't mind my saying, that is some sweet, sweet bugaboo ya got going there. ;-)

I'm going to ask another impolitic question here, so I apologize in advance if it causes offense. Does anybody else share shrink's apparent fear of an imminent (or even distant) imposition of Christian theocracy?

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 15, 2011 9:12 PM | Report abuse

"The Christian Republic of America will never happen."

Very true; mostly because there aren't even .001% of American Christians who would contemplate such a thing.

Posted by: tao9 | February 15, 2011 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Troll, I am so stoked about our President (an 1/2 African) of questionable provenance, teaching this country what it needs to learn.

"Get out ahead of change."

He didn't invent the idea.
Napoleon's foreign minister owns the quote.
Here is my senior memory version,

realize what has become inevitable and expedite it

I see it in Plutarch. I see it everywhere.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 9:20 PM | Report abuse

On the other hand nine out of ten Egyptian women suffer genital mutilation.

Posted by: tao9 | February 15, 2011 9:22 PM | Report abuse

tao, that is not on the other hand.
Why did you say on the other hand?

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 9:25 PM | Report abuse

Shrink, thanks for that insight. When speaking of things Napoleon and our President, this quote comes to mind:

"Never ascribe to malice, that which can be explained by incompetence."

'Course, YMMV. ;-)

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 15, 2011 9:26 PM | Report abuse

"...teaching this country what it needs to learn."

Living with 18% interest rates and inflation?

Again?

Sweet! Chasten us, O Merciful Lightgiver.

Posted by: tao9 | February 15, 2011 9:27 PM | Report abuse

Islamic genital mutilation is a horrible thing, it is the imprint of theocracy. It it is Islamic, it is done in Islamic countries from Nigeria through the Arab world to Indonesia.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 9:30 PM | Report abuse

shrink,

US -- not Christian
Egypt -- very much Islam(ist)

Posted by: tao9 | February 15, 2011 9:31 PM | Report abuse

"Never ascribe to malice, that which can be explained by incompetence."

This is the paranoia antivenin.

This isn't what we are talking about.

Theocracy is not what we have in America.
All I said was, it is why America exists.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 9:34 PM | Report abuse

shrink,

It's (horrifyingly) interesting. The practice is not nearly as prevalent in the Gulf states, Iran or Pakistan. I wonder why.

Posted by: tao9 | February 15, 2011 9:36 PM | Report abuse

We agree we need to keep true believing religious agenda people out of government, no not people who have religious faith, but true to the cause, hard core, my faith is reality and all others must be [insert]....people out of government, we are good and we can move on.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 9:40 PM | Report abuse

Troll and shrink, I left comments for you on the Leonard Lance thread we turned into a discussion of healthcare.

Posted by: AllButCertain | February 15, 2011 9:43 PM | Report abuse

toa, do you want to know?
We should get a room.

I'll send you a junk email address if you want,
but you will regret it.

No one wants to know about Islam and genital mutilation.

Don't worry I am not a kook, I never even thought about it until I married an Islamic woman (and no, she somehow skated past it).

It is the Catholic sex scandal beyond belief. No one wants to know.

It is Islams horror show.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 9:48 PM | Report abuse

"It's (horrifyingly) interesting. The practice is not nearly as prevalent in the Gulf states, Iran or Pakistan. I wonder why"

I don't know about Iran. Pakistan is not one country. Class has everything to do with it.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 9:52 PM | Report abuse

@Troll & Tao

"Does anybody else share shrink's apparent fear of an imminent (or even distant) imposition of Christian theocracy?"

Again..alas..on blogs..certainly this one...both sides are drawn into discussions of issues from the extreme positions on those issues. IMHO there is no "pure" anything in this nation. We are not pure "free enterprise" or pure capitalists nor are we pure theocrats...but we are just as theocratic as we are free enterprise.

A Christian socialist would have a far better chance of getting elected in this country than an atheist capitalist...much less a Muslim. A strong argument could be made that the most qualified man in the R party lost the nomination to a tired grumpy old man becaues he.."Mittens" wasn't Christian enough. It's not just a requirement to be "Christian" but the right kind of "Christian". Mittens Mormonism probably cost him a run at the White House.

You two are old enough to remember JFK going to Houston and groveling before the Southern Baptists..swearing that he would not follow the Pope's directions if elected President. Kennedy was the first..and to date..only Catholic..although subsequent Presidents have done a pretty good job loading the Supreme Court with Catholics. How about that Tao at last some equal time.:-)

And so let's review...a country over 200 years old has NEVER had a Jewish President, an Atheist, not even an Agnostic President or Vice President. Ole Joe LIEbermann at least got on a ticket as VP. THAT'S IT! The closest anybody but a Christian has ever come to the W.H.

The Supreme Court is not much better...at least Brandeis was Jewish but again the Supremes are all Christians!

Not only are all these folks Christian now politicians wear their Christianity on their sleeves. Plenty of little Crucifixes on lapels...prayer breakfasts...a leading R Presidential candidate actually had the gall to say the Constitution should be changed to be more in line with the Bible...really? Why not the Koran...the teachings of the Buddha..or the ancient Vedas?

Our military has also been heavily influenced by Christians..in fact the Pentagon has been sued over religious freedom or more accurately the freedom from religion.

More than race, gender, age, RELIGION has become the single biggest litmus test in Presidential politics today. And in particular Christianity.

Are either of you two willing to suggest and Atheist would have a shot at the Presidency...how about Muslim..a Buddhist?

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 15, 2011 9:57 PM | Report abuse

This place is really going downhill


Obama's budget is a complete joke -

Obama seems to be opposing necessary budget cuts for the sake of WHAT?


What is the purpose in wasting government money to put together a budget plan which Obama KNOWS no one wants?


Let me be clear: Obama deliberately sent a budget to Congress which NO ONE IN THE COUNTRY WANTS. It was a waste of paper, of government time, of salaries. Obama has made a mockery of himself. He is a complete fool. The House Republicans will not back down. $1.6 Trillion dollar budget? WHO IS OBAMA TRYING TO KID?


Obama is a joke


Obama has made the budget process COMPLETELY POLITICAL. This is NOT the time, in an economic crisis to play these kinds of games. WHAT IS WRONG WITH OBAMA? This clearly indicates some mental instability on Obama's part.

Posted by: AllSpendingMustBeCut | February 15, 2011 9:58 PM | Report abuse

"Troll and shrink, I left comments for you on the Leonard Lance thread we turned into a discussion of healthcare."

I posted a response.
For what it's worth.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 15, 2011 9:58 PM | Report abuse

BTW...I do realize some of our Founding Fathers were not Christians but "Deists"
Although the religious NUTS in Texas are trying to rewrite that fact in our history books.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 15, 2011 10:00 PM | Report abuse

ABC, you wrote,

shrink, you write: "The interface between maybe and maybe not has to waste lots of money, it simply has to."

Agreed. It reminds me of something my dad used to say. He worked on the treatment side in the prison system and said it was a hard truth that if some parolees didn't reoffend, the system wasn't doing its job. They simply could not keep everyone with even the slightest chance of recidivism incarcerated. It would mean wasting too many lives of people who'd been effectively rehabilitated.

I'll count on you to get the analogy."

Well I am sorry ABC but that is real, what I do. I like to argue about Wall Street!, then someone can say I don't know wtf I am talking about.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 10:07 PM | Report abuse

The liberals - instead of acting like adults - all they want to do is mock people.

How about acting like adults?

Including when you talk about Michele Bachmann.

Posted by: AllSpendingMustBeCut | February 15, 2011 10:07 PM | Report abuse

"Class has everything to do with it."

thnx shrink, the demographic map I saw at WHO site bears that out.

Posted by: tao9 | February 15, 2011 10:15 PM | Report abuse

Troll, I hope it does not offend the moon and the stars, but (no not yours, I am sorry if that offended you or anyone who does not like to see the word "but") so if we can, sorry about the we, I had no way of knowing whether anyone else was concerned, weather people included, but (sorry!) I like how people here seem to be disagreeing (sorry!) without being ass-wipes.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 10:17 PM | Report abuse

Defense spending: When you poll, and ask, "Do you think the U.S should spend 4x as much money on national defense as the next-largest defense spender, China?" you end up with some really huge majority saying "no."

Sadly, we spend **seven times** as much as the next-largest defense spender, China.
.

Posted by: jprestonian | February 15, 2011 10:18 PM | Report abuse

ruk, the Supreme Court has three Jewish justices.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 15, 2011 10:20 PM | Report abuse

shrink:

""I agree completely with smd1234 @ 1857""

What distinguishes a businessman who holds a medical degree and purports to be in the healing profession from a non-businessman who holds a medical degree is actually is in the healing profession? Does the latter work for free or something?

Which are you?

Posted by: ScottC3 | February 15, 2011 10:32 PM | Report abuse

"A Christian socialist would have a far better chance of getting elected in this country than an atheist capitalist."

Funny. Honesty might matter. In the debate...

"I am a God fearing Socialist!"

"I am an Atheist Capitalist."

I believe contestant #2. I can see it in his face. He knows what he is talking about.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 15, 2011 10:37 PM | Report abuse

The difference is a doctor doesn't refer to himself as "in the healing profession."

A doctor says, "I'm a doctor."

Posted by: DDAWD | February 15, 2011 10:41 PM | Report abuse

This Lara Logan story is bad. With all the agitation for change in the Middle East, I wonder how things are going to work out for women.

Posted by: AllButCertain | February 15, 2011 10:45 PM | Report abuse

Liberals - did you EVEN THINK that Obama was doing this when he jammed through health care ???

OR are you just complete morons?

Ironically, the youth which supported Obama because they wanted to make a racial statement - Obama is SLAMMING THEM THE HARDEST WITH THE NEW TAXES

____________________

The Internal Revenue Service says it will need an battalion of 1,054 new auditors and staffers and new facilities at a cost to taxpayers of more than $359 million in fiscal 2012 just to watch over the initial implementation of President Obama's healthcare reforms. Among the new corps will be 81 workers assigned to make sure tanning salons pay a new 10 percent excise tax. Their cost: $11.5 million.

In its request, the IRS explained that the tax changes associated with health reform are huge. "Implementation of the Affordable Care Act of 2010 presents a major challenge to the IRS.

ACA represents the largest set of tax law changes in more than 20 years, with more than 40 provisions that amend the tax laws."

Unsaid: The requests are just the beginning, since the new healthcare program is evolving and won't be fully implemented until about 2014.

The detailed IRS budget documents spell out exactly what most of the new workforce will be doing. For example, some 81 will be tasked just to handle the tax reporting of 25,000 tanning salons.

They face a new 10 percent excise tax on indoor tanning services.

Another 76 will be assigned to make sure businesses engaged in making and imported drugs pay their new fee which is expected to deliver $2.8 billion to the Treasury in 2012 and 2013. The new healthcare corps will also require new facilities and computers.

Posted by: AllSpendingMustBeCut | February 15, 2011 10:45 PM | Report abuse

ROONEY!!!!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WO05VYSun9o&feature=related

{{{slightly OT}}}

Posted by: tao9 | February 15, 2011 10:49 PM | Report abuse

DD:

""The difference is a doctor doesn't refer to himself as "in the healing profession." ""

What if it is smd doing the referring?

Posted by: ScottC3 | February 15, 2011 10:50 PM | Report abuse

Obama lied - he said he didn't increase taxes.

If we protest in Washington, will Obama resign?

Maybe we should try that.

Posted by: AllSpendingMustBeCut | February 15, 2011 10:51 PM | Report abuse

Ruk, part 1

"A Christian socialist would have a far better chance of getting elected in this country than an atheist capitalist...much less a Muslim. A strong argument could be made that the most qualified man in the R party lost the nomination to a tired grumpy old man becaues he.."Mittens" wasn't Christian enough. It's not just a requirement to be "Christian" but the right kind of "Christian". Mittens Mormonism probably cost him a run at the White House."

Well, we tend to elect people, on a local level anyway, that look (the metaphorical as well as physical look) and believe as we do. I'm not sure there's anything really wrong with that. Maybe Romney's Mormonism cost him the nomination. On the other hand, it was McCain's turn, in the general scheme of how Republicans pick candidates. Also, who, in 2007 had better name recognition? McCain or Romney? Finally, it's obvious that both candidates announced far too early for their own good. Jay Cost at WS
and RCP had a very interesting article on that. Point is, the correct answer is whatever the strongest bias we have that influences our answer. I just don't see Christian theocrats behind every pulpit

"You two are old enough to remember JFK going to Houston and groveling before the Southern Baptists..swearing that he would not follow the Pope's directions if elected President. Kennedy was the first..and to date..only Catholic..although subsequent Presidents have done a pretty good job loading the Supreme Court with Catholics. How about that Tao at last some equal time.:-)"

He was Irish too.

"And so let's review...a country over 200 years old has NEVER had a Jewish President, an Atheist, not even an Agnostic President or Vice President. Ole Joe LIEbermann at least got on a ticket as VP. THAT'S IT! The closest anybody but a Christian has ever come to the W.H."

Again, we tend to elect people that look and believe in the same things we do. I don't see Germany electing a Turkish immigrant President. Nor do I see the Turks elevating a Kurd to the top spot. I'm just not gonna worry and gnashing my teeth over it when the current occupant is Barry.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 15, 2011 10:52 PM | Report abuse

Ruk, part 2


"The Supreme Court is not much better...at least Brandeis was Jewish but again the Supremes are all Christians!"

It's almost as if 85% or greater of the country, of the judges in the country, are Christian. And those nominated to the court, I'm just spitballing here, reflect that. ;-)

"Not only are all these folks Christian now politicians wear their Christianity on their sleeves. Plenty of little Crucifixes on lapels...prayer breakfasts...a leading R Presidential candidate actually had the gall to say the Constitution should be changed to be more in line with the Bible...really? Why not the Koran...the teachings of the Buddha..or the ancient Vedas?"

When wasn't this the case? And ask Justice Breyer I think? Isn't he the one who likes to consider foreign law when looking at cases. Maybe he can toss in some Sharia into the mix. And I'm guessing that the leading Republican candidate wanted to change the Constitution though executive order, rather than the process outlined in the Constitution.

"More than race, gender, age, RELIGION has become the single biggest litmus test in Presidential politics today. And in particular Christianity."

I disagree.

Are either of you two willing to suggest and Atheist would have a shot at the Presidency...how about Muslim..a Buddhist?

I'd say no. But it doesn't bother me. An individual like that really wouldn't look and believe the same things as 50% + 1 of the voting public.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 15, 2011 10:54 PM | Report abuse

tao:

Great goal. I used to go to Premier League matches a lot when I was in England, but never got to see Rooney live. Usually went to Chelsea matches. The most memorable was getting tickets through a business associate for myself and a buddy who was visiting from the US to see a Chelsea/Man U match, back when Beckham was still with Man U. We were both big Chelsea fans, but discovered when we got to Chelsea's stadium that our tickets were in the middle of the visitors section. Had to spend the entire game in silence pretending not to be pulling for Chelsea. If you've ever seen the type of fan that travels to away matches, you'd understand how scary it was.

Posted by: ScottC3 | February 15, 2011 10:59 PM | Report abuse

"What if it is smd doing the referring?

Posted by: ScottC3 "

mumble muble mumble...worlds smartest conservative...mumble mumble mumble.

Let's just split it up into people who wear stethoscopes and those who don't.

Maybe for all those abortions you supposedly pay for, you should meet the doctors who perform them.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 15, 2011 11:05 PM | Report abuse

tao:

One of my favorites, from Gianfranco Zola

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Z4DAaQe7Q4

Posted by: ScottC3 | February 15, 2011 11:05 PM | Report abuse

"I'd say no. But it doesn't bother me. An individual like that really wouldn't look and believe the same things as 50% + 1 of the voting public."

Every atheist I've ever met has far more in common with the average American than someone like GWB.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 15, 2011 11:10 PM | Report abuse

ABC, I responded to your response on the last thread.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 15, 2011 11:11 PM | Report abuse

""I'd say no. But it doesn't bother me. An individual like that really wouldn't look and believe the same things as 50% + 1 of the voting public."

Every atheist I've ever met has far more in common with the average American than someone like GWB."

Thanks DDAWD! That's a fascinating and powerful insight! I'm appreciative that you took the time to read what I'd written and then respond to it. Really, really interesting. :-)

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 15, 2011 11:17 PM | Report abuse

Scott,

I've been to some very big baseball (Go Sox!) and football (NFL playoff) games.

I saw Ireland beat England in 2007 Six Nations Rugby at Croke Park. The emotion and energy was as elevated as anything I have ever witnessed. Nothing here has ever affected me so.

Swept away.

Ronan O'Gara is the best rugby name ever.

Posted by: tao9 | February 15, 2011 11:20 PM | Report abuse

scott,

Zola -- that didn't even look possible!

Posted by: tao9 | February 15, 2011 11:25 PM | Report abuse

"Every atheist I've ever met has far more in common with the average American than someone like GWB."

How many you met?

Are they, like, Rotary atheists?

Elks?

Atheist Little League coaches?

Posted by: tao9 | February 15, 2011 11:28 PM | Report abuse

If two Tea Partiers with a sign show up somewhere, it's all over the national news. But ten thousand people turn out to protest WI Governor Scott Walker's attempt to do in unions and state employees, and it's not even mentioned on the evening news.

(And doesn't it seem as if the Westminster Dog Show is held every two months?)

Posted by: AllButCertain | February 16, 2011 12:26 AM | Report abuse

"How many you met?

Are they, like, Rotary atheists?

Elks?

Atheist Little League coaches?

Posted by: tao9"

I know, hard to believe, right?

At the very least, they are in line with America on the "letting New Orleans drown" subject.

At least more so than your hero.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 16, 2011 12:30 AM | Report abuse

There is an agreed need for civil discourse. However, when the liberals start their name-calling and derogatory attitudes, that limits discussion.

It is that simple.

I blame the liberals for dragging down the discourse in this nation. The liberals have been nothing but sterotyping when it comes to the Tea Party. The liberals talk like the Tea Party really should not have the right to protest, or voice their Freedom of Speech, because they might become "violent."

Clearly.


IN sharp contrast, Obama has encouraged the people in Egypt to do EXACTLY what the the Tea Party has done in America - go out and protest. Have you seen democratic party talking points cautioning that those demonstrations may become "violent?"


NO, the democratic party is always playing games like that.


Obama has employed the same tactics against the Tea Party which he has condemned in other nations. The democrats even make up names to call their opponents. This is what kids do when they are in second grade. It is childish.
Sorry however this is the truth.

Posted by: AllSpendingMustBeCut | February 16, 2011 4:31 AM | Report abuse

"Funny. Honesty might matter. In the debate...

"I am a God fearing Socialist!"

"I am an Atheist Capitalist."

I believe contestant #2. I can see it in his face. He knows what he is talking about."

The Pope (white trunks) versus Rand (gold trunks). Sinatra at ringside and you can tell from his face there's nowhere else he'd rather be just now. It's a big match. Classic, really. One for the ages, as they say.

Posted by: bernielatham | February 16, 2011 5:59 AM | Report abuse

Obama's press conference yesterday was incredible - Obama is saying he is ready to play politics with the country's budget.

So, for Obama, this is a political game over how much he gets to charge on the credit card.

And Obama wants to borrow the money from China. This is a disgrace. The budget has to be constructively approached and the deficit has to brought down - Obama seems solely concerned with whether he "wins."

Posted by: 37thRisingNow | February 16, 2011 6:08 AM | Report abuse

I hadn't realized what a big deal it was, technically, when Egypt suddenly killed internet traffic. Lots of people, for lots of reasons, are going to be studying this one...

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/16/technology/16internet.html?_r=1&hp

Posted by: bernielatham | February 16, 2011 6:09 AM | Report abuse

Obama is a coward and failed to constructively deal with the deficit issue.

Instead Obama is playing games with the deficit and the Economy. No liberal can claim with any credibility that Obama's budget submitted to Congress was serious. Obama's proposal was all politics. Obama is playing games with the country's credit card. Obama has proven that he is unable to govern. Clearly the country needs someone completely different and able to handle the tough issues.

At this point, it is all about "governing" and for Obama it is all about "playing politics." The deficit is not "won" or "lost" by one side or the other. The entire country loses when the deficit is out-of-control. And that is PRECISELY CORRECT - there is no control over the budget. The deficit is on RUNAWAY. And Obama has just stepped on the accelerator.

Posted by: 37thRisingNow | February 16, 2011 6:26 AM | Report abuse

From Gallup, again:

Clearly, 57% believe defense spending is OK or needs to be boosted.

39% want less.

If you want to call 39% out of 100% a plurality, then free speech says you can.

But it's still a clear minority opinion.

Posted by: battleground51 | February 16, 2011 6:35 AM | Report abuse

Hey DDAWD!

W is not my hero.

But he didn't let New Orleans drown all by himself. New Orleans helped itself alot on that one. To most Americans that was obvious, without diminishing their concern and their efforts of relief and compassion.

Tragic and devastating.

But you're alright because ya got yourself a scapegoat...someone to hate...that way you don't have to think too much or too deeply.

Posted by: tao9 | February 16, 2011 6:38 AM | Report abuse

Battleground

Americans want the United States to be a Superpower.

Liberals are hostile toward America's Superpower status. They want to cut the defense budget and waste the same money elsewhere in bloated inefficient government programs.

The American People are proud of their nation. They do not want to withdraw from the world. The liberals' policies will lead to unrest and chaos around the globe. The last time the United States pulled out of Europe, World War II was the result, 50 Million dead.

Clearly the liberals forget easily.

The clear way to WORLD PEACE is a strong US military and US engagement around the world. Just ask Miss America.


Posted by: 37thRisingNow | February 16, 2011 6:42 AM | Report abuse

But you're alright because ya got yourself a scapegoat...someone to hate...that way you don't have to think too much or too deeply.

==

Nuts.

Yeah it's scapegoating to note that Bush lied the USA into war, trashed the economy, said "bring it on," and attended a country music shindig while people in NO were climbing on top of cars to keep from drowning.

He was a disgrace.

Posted by: caothien9 | February 16, 2011 6:44 AM | Report abuse

Tao you are 100% on New Orleans.

Posted by: 37thRisingNow | February 16, 2011 6:44 AM | Report abuse

Some disgrace here too, one must say...

"The US secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, praised the role of social networks such as Twitter in promoting freedom – at the same time as the US government was in court seeking to invade the privacy of Twitter users.

Lawyers for civil rights organisations appeared before a judge in Alexandria, Virginia, battling against a US government order to disclose the details of private Twitter accounts in the WikiLeaks row, including that of the Icelandic MP Birgitta Jonsdottir, below..."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2011/feb/15/wikileaks-row-us-privacy-twitter

Posted by: bernielatham | February 16, 2011 6:52 AM | Report abuse

"...and attended a country music shindig..."

I thought it was a Nurenburg Rally re-enactment sponsored by Halliburton, AIPAC and the Sons of the Confederacy.

c'mon cao, too much morning hyperbole harshes the coffee.

Later, honest labor calls.

Posted by: tao9 | February 16, 2011 6:56 AM | Report abuse

Bush did not lie to get us into war.

There were faulty intelligence reports - mostly prepared under Bill Clinton.

There is a long list of democrats - Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, many democrats in the Senate and the House - ALL saying the same thing as Bush - ALL based on the intelligence service reports.


If one is relying on incorrect information, that is not a lie.

In contrast Bill Clinton knew perfectly well he was lying under Oath - and he was disbarred for that action. Obama knew perfectly well that he lied about ALL the new taxes he imposed in the middle of an Economic Crisis. If one is SO CONCERNED ABOUT LYING, PLEASE PUT THOSE LIES ON YOUR SIGNS.

Posted by: 37thRisingNow | February 16, 2011 6:57 AM | Report abuse

Now this is really ugly....

"The Knesset Constitution, Law and Justice Committee approved a bill on Tuesday that calls for heavy fines to be imposed on Israeli citizens who initiate or incite boycotts against Israel, despite the Foreign Ministry's objections.

The Knesset approved an initial reading of the bill over six months ago. The bill will now move on to a first reading in the Knesset for approval. If it becomes a law, the fines would apply to anyone boycotting Israeli individuals, companies, factories, and organizations...

Under the new law, any group could sue for damages of up to NIS 30,000 from anyone who launched a boycott against them, or incited a boycott, without having to prove that damage was indeed caused. An additional sum could then be demanded once damages were proven..."

http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/knesset-committee-approves-bill-allowing-israel-boycotters-to-be-fined-1.343596

Posted by: bernielatham | February 16, 2011 6:59 AM | Report abuse

Wouldn't a government shutdown that lead to SS checks not going out not be slashing your wrists in terms of the demographic that gave you such support in November, 2010?

Posted by: rhallnj | February 16, 2011 7:37 AM | Report abuse

"...and attended a country music shindig..."

I thought it was a Nurenburg Rally re-enactment sponsored by Halliburton, AIPAC and the Sons of the Confederacy.

c'mon cao, too much morning hyperbole harshes the coffee.

==

No, Bush went to some country music hoo-hah while NO was drowning. Saw a pic of him on the stage holding a guitar trying to play a G but two frets too far up. Yukkin' it up with some good ol' boys. Yee haw.

Too bad about Trent's house.

Posted by: caothien9 | February 16, 2011 7:39 AM | Report abuse

"Sadly, we spend **seven times** as much as the next-largest defense spender, China."

No one really knows how much they (or other countries) spend, but I favor overwhelming superiority of force. It boggles the mind why everyone doesn't.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 16, 2011 7:41 AM | Report abuse

"There was a time last summer and fall, when Tea Party ideologues like Sharron Angle, Christine O'Donnell and Joe Miller were winning key Republican Senate primaries, that it seemed quite possible -- maybe even inevitable -- that the Republican Party would nominate Sarah Palin for president in 2012. Here were Republican primary voters shedding all pragmatic inhibitions and opting to nominate candidates with obvious and severe general election liabilities, simply because they passed a purity test; how could this not end with Palin accepting the GOP presidential nomination in '12?

That was then.

Now, just a few months later, Palin's role in the 2012 conversation seems to have changed substantially. She might still run; who, really, has any idea what she wants to do or how she envisions her '12 prospects? But it almost doesn't matter: It's getting harder and harder to imagine how she'd win the nomination if she were to go."

http://www.salon.com/news/politics/sarah_palin/index.html?story=/politics/war_room/2011/02/15/palin_2012

Ahem. This trajectory wasn't difficult to discern. It really wasn't.

Posted by: bernielatham | February 16, 2011 7:52 AM | Report abuse

Wouldn't a government shutdown that lead to SS checks not going out not be slashing your wrists in terms of the demographic that gave you such support in November, 2010?

==

Not prudent to apply the logic of self-interest in anything having to do with the Republican Party or Conservative Things.

Posted by: caothien9 | February 16, 2011 7:55 AM | Report abuse

The Scalia/Thomas/Koch/Federalist Society is getting increasing attention and it sure as hell should.

http://www.salon.com/news/the_supreme_court/index.html?story=/opinion/walsh/politics/2011/02/15/robber_baron_justice

Posted by: bernielatham | February 16, 2011 7:56 AM | Report abuse

No one really knows how much they (or other countries) spend, but I favor overwhelming superiority of force. It boggles the mind why everyone doesn't.

==

Because

(1) not everyone is consumed by fear and terror

(2) military spending is for all intents and purposes money removed from the economy and burned

One would think that you "Reagan won the Cold War" ninnies would be able to track the fact that wer're following the same path.

Lawyer, huh?

Posted by: caothien9 | February 16, 2011 8:00 AM | Report abuse

Bernie

What happened to your friend Ethan.

Did he get fired or transferred to Chicago?

Posted by: 37thRisingNow | February 16, 2011 8:02 AM | Report abuse

The Chamber of Commerce/Bank of America smear campaign story has some serious updates...

http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2011/02/15/palantir/index.html

As Glenn notes, this became uncovered by sheer luck. Had one doofus not been bragging, Anonymous wouldn't have thought to hack into their files and find what is now being discovered.

The point being that there's far more of this crap going on than we understand.

Posted by: bernielatham | February 16, 2011 8:03 AM | Report abuse

Feingold is launching a new PAC, Progressives United, in order to compete with some of the less than open 527's launched since CU. No soft money, completely open and transparent, supporting progressive candidates.

"""The idea of allowing corporations to have unlimited influence on our democracy is very dangerous, obviously. That's exactly what it does ... Things were like this 100 years ago in the United States, with the huge corporate and business power of the oil companies and others. But this time it's like the Gilded Age on steroids."

Feingold, who is now also teaching law school at Marquette University and writing a book on foreign policy, has first-hand experience with the effects of big money in politics. While he shunned outside spending on his behalf in his campaigns, his 2010 opponent, Republican Sen. Ron Johnson, was the beneficiary of millions of dollars from conservative interest groups. After his win, Johnson even went to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's national headquarters to personally thank CEO Tom Donohue for the lobbying group's unsolicited support of his candidacy.

Feingold said that Progressives United will follow the example of his own campaigns and not take any soft money or unlimited contributions. "We're going to be reporting every dime that we get, whether required by law or not," he insisted. "Every penny of every contribution -- a practice I used as a U.S. senator. So it will be very different from the 527s and other groups that have been spawned by Citizens United. It will be 100 percent accountable, and that is an important principle that I believe in that we'll follow to the T with Progressives United, as a way of contrasting it to what's going on with the corporate money power that's been unleashed by Citizens United."

Looking back on his time in the Senate, Feingold cited two examples of corporate influence that most troubled him: 1) the debate over the estate tax and 2) the BP disaster.""

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/02/16/russ-feingold-progressives-united-corporate-influence_n_816693.html

Posted by: lmsinca | February 16, 2011 8:05 AM | Report abuse

@Ims - those are two telling examples, for sure.

I'm up for a jasmine revolution here.

Posted by: bernielatham | February 16, 2011 8:14 AM | Report abuse

"The Scalia/Thomas/Koch/Federalist Society is getting increasing attention and it sure as hell should."

Isn't it something how the NYT functions as an uncritical bulletin board for Common Cause? You'd almost think that NYT is part of a left-wing media apparatus and echo chamber.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 16, 2011 8:14 AM | Report abuse

You'd almost think that NYT is part of a left-wing media apparatus and echo chamber

==

It's a newspaper, you dope

Posted by: caothien9 | February 16, 2011 8:19 AM | Report abuse

You read the Times a lot then, QB? I wouldn't have thought it. But I guess if you claim familiarity and knowledge, you must have it.

Posted by: bernielatham | February 16, 2011 8:23 AM | Report abuse

Bernie,

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703584804576144234249204912.html

That's some sweet, sweet NYT propaganda! It would just rock to see Pinch, Keller et.al. in the dock vs. a guy who's smarter than the whole GreyLady dessicated enchilada combined.

Posted by: tao9 | February 16, 2011 8:23 AM | Report abuse

2011: THE YEAR OF PROTESTS, REVOLUTIONS, WALKOUTS!

Breaking: Madison Schools Closed Due To Teacher Walk-Outs!

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2011/02/16/945368/-BREAKING:-Madison-Schools-Closed-Due-To-Teacher-Walk-Outs!

and

THOUSANDS PROTEST AGAINST WISCONSIN GOVERNOR ‘S PLAN TO ROLL BACK UNION RIGHTS!

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/02/thousands-protest-wisconsin-governors-plan-to-roll-back-union-rights.php?ref=fpb

(The Beginning of People Not Taking GOP Cuts on the Poor & Working Class Anymore, While Extending Helping Hands to the Rich!)

Posted by: wdsoulplane | February 16, 2011 8:24 AM | Report abuse

Bernie, moi aussi.

Posted by: lmsinca | February 16, 2011 8:27 AM | Report abuse

@tao - No surprise the WSJ does a piece this lengthy in defense of the two fellows. Your piece is typically Dylanesque (you can choose the Dylan) but if you ever want to get into specifics, I'll take this up with you.

Posted by: bernielatham | February 16, 2011 8:28 AM | Report abuse

cao:

""No, Bush went to some country music hoo-hah while NO was drowning.""

No, he didn't. He went to a scheduled speech at the Naval Air Station North Island in California, after which he was presented with a guitar from country singer Mark Wills, who was also in attendance. The picture you saw was taken backstage after the speech.

Posted by: ScottC3 | February 16, 2011 8:29 AM | Report abuse

"You read the Times a lot then, QB? I wouldn't have thought it. But I guess if you claim familiarity and knowledge, you must have it."

I wouldn't say a lot but some. I followed your link to Salon, which was based on a linked "story" in NYT, which amounts to a bulletin board posting for CC for the nontroversy it invented.

If you think it otherwise, perhaps you can explain why. I follow your detections of daily right-wing propaganda and think I understand how it works: right-wing group or figure says X, which is then picked up and reported through major media channels.

The NYT did nothing here but pick up and amplify CC's smear. So you tell us what that is.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 16, 2011 8:33 AM | Report abuse

From the WSJ editorial cited by tao:

Those of us who are in the business of commenting on politics and government have a moral duty, even if frequently not a legally enforceable one, to tell the truth when we criticize public officials. If we fail to do so, our reputations ought to suffer.

Ironic, eh?

Posted by: pragmaticagain | February 16, 2011 8:35 AM | Report abuse

tao:

re scalia/nyt

More interesting tidbits from yesterday (2nd item down).

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704409004576146402816348950.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_MIDDLETopOpinion

Posted by: ScottC3 | February 16, 2011 8:40 AM | Report abuse

As Glenn noted earlier, Wired has a tremendous piece on the corporate plot to bring down wikileaks...
http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2011/02/spy/

Earlier, I said to Scott that the list of entities trying to bring down wikileaks provides us with a rough but accurate means of finding the "bad guys". Scott suggested that the Obama administration is on this list. Yup. Which gives me no reason to alter my use of this metric.

Posted by: bernielatham | February 16, 2011 8:41 AM | Report abuse

"Ironic, eh?"

Why don't you or Bernie demonstrate, by showing where the WSJ editorial was untruthful in its critique of the patently untruthful NYT comments?

Perhaps you'd also comment on the coincidence of the NYT's deceptive commentary on Scalia with the NYT's serving as uncritical mouthpiece for CC's smear? Any agenda here? Is the NYT part of the right-wing noise machine?

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 16, 2011 8:45 AM | Report abuse

All, Morning Roundup posted:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2011/02/the_morning_plum_188.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | February 16, 2011 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Earlier, I said to Scott that the list of entities trying to bring down wikileaks provides us with a rough but accurate means of finding the "bad guys". Scott suggested that the Obama administration is on this list. Yup. Which gives me no reason to alter my use of this metric.

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

I imagine any group/person/entity with significant power and wealth would love to see wikileaks go down. Those people almost inevitably misuse their power and use their power to cover up said misuse.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 16, 2011 8:47 AM | Report abuse

"So it will be very different from the 527s and other groups that have been spawned by Citizens United."

Rather an odd statement for a fellow who should know a little bit more about it. As I recall it, 527s and "other groups" were in fact spawned by the (unconstitutional) McCain-Feingold. CU only means a corporate entity can speak and publish without such contrivances.

But I suppose he needs to put his spin on things.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 16, 2011 8:59 AM | Report abuse

cao:

""No, Bush went to some country music hoo-hah while NO was drowning.""

No, he didn't. He went to a scheduled speech at the Naval Air Station North Island in California, after which he was presented with a guitar from country singer Mark Wills, who was also in attendance. The picture you saw was taken backstage after the speech.

Posted by: ScottC3 | February 16, 2011 8:29 AM

.........................

But he also went to Arizona, to present John McCain with a birthday cake, while New Orleans was being flooded.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 16, 2011 12:11 PM | Report abuse

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