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Posted at 8:30 AM ET, 02/11/2011

The Morning Plum

By Greg Sargent

* Conservatives crank up pressure on House GOP leadership: It's becoming clearer and clearer that conservatives are determined to leave House Republicans no maneuvering room whatsoever on their campaign promise of massive spending cuts. The latest: With the House GOP leadership now aggreeing to conservative demands to find $100 billion in budget cuts, the Club for Growth and Heritage Foundation threaten to downgrade the ratings of any House GOPer who supports anything short of that goal, another sign that the unexpected amount of pressure from the right is becoming a defining dynamic.

* Also: In another sign of how much of a problem this is becoming, some Republicans fear that going too far in catering to conservative demands means the party is squandering a chance for a quick budget victory and wasting an opportunity to focus harder on driving a wedge between Dems.

* Obama to Mubarak: Explain yourself! Obama demands that Mubarak show more clarity of intent:

Too many Egyptians remain unconvinced that the government is serious about a genuine transition to democracy, and it is the responsibility of the government to speak clearly to the Egyptian people and the world...We therefore urge the Egyptian government to move swiftly to explain the changes that have been made, and to spell out in clear and unambiguous language the step by step process that will lead to democracy and the representative government that the Egyptian people seek.

* Egypt crisis has White House in disarray: Administration officials are scrambling to keep up with a crisis that's spinning out of control, and they privately know they need to push Mubarak harder lest the protests turn violent.

* Inside Mubarak's head: David Remnick sums up Mubarak's latest speech:

To watch Hosni Mubarak today in his late-night speech in Cairo, as he used every means of rhetorical deflection to delay his inevitable end, was to watch a man so deluded, so deaf to the demands of history, that he was incapable of hearing an entire people screaming in his ear. And it is almost always that way: the dictator, coddled in his isolation, surrounded by satraps and servants, immersed in his own sense of essential-ness, is the last to know.

* Nonstop comedy from Mitt Romney: In his big speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference today, Romney will do his damndest to break through the wall of justified conservative skepticism about his ideological opportunism by throwing out as many refried and overheated anti-Obama phrases as he can muster.

Among the most ridiculous: He will allude to "President Obama's Hoovervilles," which, as it happens, isn't even original. This is the sort of dreck that bubbled up in 2010 from shadowy right wing groups that peddled the idea of "Obamavilles." My take on what an absurd distortion of history this represents is right here.

* The war over abortion: Chris Bowers has a simple and pithy summary of the pieces of legislation that make up the three-pronged House GOP attack on abortion rights.

* Repeal not a slam dunk issue for some Repubicans: As Jed Lewison notes, the House GOPers who may have a tougher time supporting repeal of the health law are the ones who preside over districts carried by Obama. Worth keeping an eye on.

* Should Clarence Thomas recuse himself from health repeal case? The national political press starts picking up on the story of his wife's ties to a lobbying outfit that opposes the health law. It'll be interesting to see how far this goes.

* A Senate race for the ages? If DNC chair Tim Kaine doesn't run for Jim Webb's seat, we could be looking at a matchup between George "Macaca" Allen and liberal hero Tom Perriello.

* Koch brothers gearing up for 2012: The are apparently going to steer $88 million to conservative causes during the 2012 cycle. But hey, the unions do it too! And...ACORN! Also, Soros Soros Soros Soros Soros!

* CPAC captures the GOP dilemma: Matt Bai, on the choice facing Republicans:

They can either tell the rebellious, angry base of their party exactly what it craves to hear, or they can tell the base what they think it needs to hear in order to win. Down one path lies affection and applause. Down the other, just maybe, lies the presidency.

* And behold CPAC, in a nutshell: Michael Scherer captures the CPAC carnival in one sentence:

"The U.S. is becoming the laughing stock of the world," exhorted reality television star Donald Trump.

Perfect.

What else is going on?

By Greg Sargent  | February 11, 2011; 8:30 AM ET
Categories:  Health reform, House Dems, House GOPers, Morning Plum, Senate Republicans, Supreme Court, Tea Party, abortion  
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Next: The GOP's post-birtherism

Comments

Mubarek has left Cairo

Posted by: caothien9 | February 11, 2011 8:36 AM | Report abuse

Remember when Romney withdrew from the primaries? How he whined and wallowed?

Posted by: caothien9 | February 11, 2011 8:40 AM | Report abuse

The U.S. never should have backed Suleiman and the "orderly transition blah blah blah." Now pull the aid money. Mubarak has to go whether Saudi Arabia and Israel like it or not.

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 8:41 AM | Report abuse

That Donald Trump quote is absolutely classic! Was that line recieved with cheers, boos, or ambivalence?

Cao- Thanks for the information. What are your thoughts on Obama's comments quoted by Greg? Too little too late? hen you take Obama's comment and the article about the administration being in disarray, it seems like they must have expected Mubarek to step down yesterday. I wonder why they thought that and were they reasonable in thinking he would do so.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 11, 2011 8:43 AM | Report abuse

"Koch brothers gearing up for 2012: The are apparently going to steer $88 million to conservative causes during the 2012 cycle."


""Earlier today, ThinkProgress published an exclusive report that the law firm representing the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, a right-wing trade association representing big business, is working with set of “private security” companies and lobbying firms to undermine their political opponents, including ThinkProgress. According to e-mails obtained by ThinkProgress, the Chamber hired the lobbying firm Hunton and Williams. Attorneys for the firm solicited a set of private security firms — HB Gary Federal, Palantir, and Berico Technologies (collectively called Team Themis) — to develop a sabotage campaign against progressive groups and labor unions, including ThinkProgress, the labor coalition Change to Win, SEIU, US Chamber Watch, and StopTheChamber.com.

New emails reveal that the private spy company investigated the families and children of the Chamber’s political opponents. The apparent spearhead of this project was Aaron Barr, an executive at HB Gary. Barr circulated numerous emails and documents detailing information about political opponents’ children, spouses, and personal lives."

http://thinkprogress.org/

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 8:44 AM | Report abuse

On a lighter note have you all ever see these Jeff Bridges impersonations of the President? He's got the looks and the mannerisms down pretty good. His lines are funny as heck too.

http://www.stevebridges.com/obamavideos-promo-jan2010-lg.html

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 11, 2011 8:45 AM | Report abuse

American response to Egypt will defer to Netanyahu's wishes.

Netanyahu will take his mar hong orders from the settler movement.

So a pack of crazy religious squatters will decide that Egypt remains a tyranny, which will mean that some totally extreme group will win the day. Welcome to 1979 all over again.

Just imagine how much progress the world could make without those settlers.

Posted by: caothien9 | February 11, 2011 8:46 AM | Report abuse

ElBaradei:

"The United States and its allies have spent the better part of the last decade, at a cost of hundreds of billions of dollars and countless lives, fighting wars to establish democracy in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now that the youth of Cairo, armed with nothing but Facebook and the power of their convictions, have drawn millions into the street to demand a true Egyptian democracy, it would be absurd to continue to tacitly endorse the rule of a regime that has lost its own people’s trust.

Egypt will not wait forever on this caricature of a leader we witnessed on television yesterday evening, deaf to the voice of the people, hanging on obsessively to power that is no longer his to keep.

What needs to happen instead is a peaceful and orderly transition of power, to channel the revolutionary fervor into concrete steps for a new Egypt based on freedom and social justice. The new leaders will have to guarantee the rights of all Egyptians. They will need to dissolve the current Parliament, no longer remotely representative of the people. They will also need to abolish the Constitution, which has become an instrument of repression, and replace it with a provisional Constitution, a three-person presidential council and a transitional government of national unity.

The presidential council should include a representative of the military, embodying the sharing of power needed to ensure continuity and stability during this critical transition. The job of the presidential council and the interim government during this period should be to set in motion the process that will turn Egypt into a free and democratic society. This includes drafting a democratic Constitution to be put to a referendum, and preparing for free and fair presidential and parliamentary elections within one year.

We are at the dawn of a new Egypt. A free and democratic society, at peace with itself and with its neighbors, will be a bulwark of stability in the Middle East and a worthy partner in the international community. The rebirth of Egypt represents the hope of a new era in which Arab society, Muslim culture and the Middle East are no longer viewed through the lens of war and radicalism, but as contributors to the forward march of humanity, modernized by advanced science and technology, enriched by our diversity of art and culture and united by shared universal values.

We have nothing to fear but the shadow of a repressive past."

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/11/opinion/11elbaradei.html?_r=1&ref=opinion

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Whoops. I meant Steve Bridges, not Jeff.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 11, 2011 8:49 AM | Report abuse

@ashot

If I may also offer an answer to your question to Cao.

Last night on CNN Fareed Zakaria, somebody I respect greatly because of his knowledge of international issues as well as his non partisan approach to U.S. politics called Obama's statement "Historic."

Historic in the sense that no modern President has ever spoken about an totalitarian ally so soon after it became apparent the people in the street were ready for change.

Yes the Obama Administration has been in "disarray" as has every other nation in the World but most especially the Egyptians themselves. When a situation is fluid and in "disarray" with lies and rumors emanating from top Egyptian sources...do we really expect anything but disarray? I do agree with shrink we have reached the point where cutting off the 1+ Billion would back Obama's words but at least he has reacted.

As Zakaria pointed out last night

It St. Ronnie took THREE YEARS before speaking badly about Marcos. After Marcos had this thugs assassinate Aquino at the airport the people on the ground coalesced and the opposition began to grow.
St. Ronnie didn't react because he liked Marco's position on communism. It took three full years before St. Ronnie backed the Philipino people over their dictator.

Again Zakaria is not a partisan so he tossed Bubba under the bus as well...Bubba took over a year after the Indonesians began to unshackle themselves from Suharto's despotic rule before he commented.

My point...yeah it's a fluid crazy situation and Obama's administration is in full scramble mode...however if you grade on the curve against the former Presidents and their reaction..Obama gets an A+++

And of course Reagan and Clinton didn't have to deal with the obscenely powerful Israeli lobby.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 8:53 AM | Report abuse

"Egypt crisis: 17 days of fluctuating US messages"

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/egypt/8318329/Egypt-crisis-17-days-of-fluctuating-US-messages.html

The WH is not looking good here.

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 8:53 AM | Report abuse

I can't wrap my head around what the Koch's want with information about the children of their political opponents?

Are they that sick they would go after family members?

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 11, 2011 8:53 AM | Report abuse

@ashot

If I may also offer an answer to your question to Cao.

Last night on CNN Fareed Zakaria, somebody I respect greatly because of his knowledge of international issues as well as his non partisan approach to U.S. politics called Obama's statement "Historic."

Historic in the sense that no modern President has ever spoken about an totalitarian ally so soon after it became apparent the people in the street were ready for change.

Yes the Obama Administration has been in "disarray" as has every other nation in the World but most especially the Egyptians themselves. When a situation is fluid and in "disarray" with lies and rumors emanating from top Egyptian sources...do we really expect anything but disarray? I do agree with shrink we have reached the point where cutting off the 1+ Billion would back Obama's words but at least he has reacted.

As Zakaria pointed out last night

It St. Ronnie took THREE YEARS before speaking badly about Marcos. After Marcos had this thugs assassinate Aquino at the airport the people on the ground coalesced and the opposition began to grow.
St. Ronnie didn't react because he liked Marco's position on communism. It took three full years before St. Ronnie backed the Philipino people over their dictator.

Again Zakaria is not a partisan so he tossed Bubba under the bus as well...Bubba took over a year after the Indonesians began to unshackle themselves from Suharto's despotic rule before he commented.

My point...yeah it's a fluid crazy situation and Obama's administration is in full scramble mode...however if you grade on the curve against the former Presidents and their reaction..Obama gets an A+++

And of course Reagan and Clinton didn't have to deal with the obscenely powerful Israeli lobby.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Sorry for the double post...not sure why...just had a really slow loading page...

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 8:57 AM | Report abuse

Gateway Pundit tracks The Obamateur "spinning out of control."
http://gatewaypundit.rightnetwork.com/2011/02/white-house-tells-reporters-that-their-message-on-egypt-has-been-consistent/

* Tuesday The Obamateur asked Mubarak to step aside.

* Wednesday he said of transitioning power, “now means yesterday.”

* Saturday morning The Obamateur said Mubarak must stay.

* Saturday evening The Obamateur said Mubarak should step aside.

* Sunday Hillary's pantsuit said Mubarak must stay in power.

* Tuesday The Obamateur said that political reform will be a gradual process.

What an utter shambles. The Obamateur's "leadership" style is totally clueless. Is Barry using Berry's crack, now that Michelle banned his cigarettes?

This from the One who inherited Lebanon's Cedar Revolution, then vacationed in Hawaiii while Iran's terrorist proxy, Hezbollah, swallowed Lebanon whole.

*shambles*

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 11, 2011 9:02 AM | Report abuse

There's a disadvantage in focusing on the Koch brothers as they are only two of the many billionaires/millionaires who have been tossing big money in the same direction for decades and for approximately the same goal - to get control of government.

Re Club for Growth and the AEI item above, these entities aren't a reflection of the fiscal "prudence" notions of the Ron Paul type of libertarian - if they were, they'd have a boner for cutting the huge waste of taxpayer funding that goes to the military sphere. Neither entity has that interest because fiscal prudence isn't really what they are about. Rather, their interest is in further solidifying the power and dominance of the corporate/financial/DC Mubaraks.

Posted by: bernielatham | February 11, 2011 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Re the CoC and the Kochs.

This is millions and millions of dollars invested in character assassination, if not extortion.

Posted by: caothien9 | February 11, 2011 9:02 AM | Report abuse

If Wikipedia really wanted to remain current...they'd have that famous quotation
of Barry Switzer.."Some people were born on third base and believe they hit a triple"
illustrated with a picture of the Koch losers.

Children...surely THAT isn't true. What total POS scumbags.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 9:05 AM | Report abuse

I can't wrap my head around what the Koch's want with information about the children of their political opponents?

Are they that sick they would go after family members?

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 11, 2011 8:53 AM | Report abuse

Mike: In a word: yes. The Cons play for keeps and it has been going on for decades. If you haven't already you should read: "invisible Hands," by Kim Phillips-Fein, which outlines the Cons' efforts to undermine the New Deal from the moment it began. Unfortunately, the book ends around Reagan so it doesn't go into what the Cons have done since then. I really hope Wikileaks or somebody else gets hold of the COC/Koch Bros secret documents. They could blow the lid off the Con Propaganda and disinformation campaign.

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Bernie from last thread said:

""Obamacare" is a government bill that sets up a specific program for medical delivery/insurance. It is like a bill that would establish a postal service or re-organize a postal service or a bill that would set taxation rates or establish a treaty or create a space exploration agency, etc. Whether it is presumed or hoped that such a bill will carry on into the future with some degree of permanence is obviously not an instance of totalitarianism or a totalitarian urge - its an instance of governance.'

The question isn't about what is "presumed or hoped." It is about the multifronted mobilization of resources and personnel to resist and thwart any (democratic) rollback and to enforce its permanence. It is about the 24/7 propaganda campaign to make rollback seem unthinkable and barbaric. It is about the (illegal) rush to entrench the program and its bureaucratic tentacles, in the face of a court ruling that it is unconstitutional, before rollback can occur.

All this is "obviously" not totalitarian, as you used the term, only by an arbitrary distinction in your mind.

"But setting up institutions and arrangements within and around government, including information control systems, to the explicit end of achieving single party/single ideology domination over a nation's citizens is categorically different in motive and consequence. It is an authoritarian motivation and end."

Well this is conveniently foggy, and detached from anything you quoted from Norquist. What sort of "institutions and arrangements"? Media, agencies, think tanks, "grass roots" orgs? How about OFA? That's certainly an institution in and around government dedicated to the permanent campaign to make liberalism the permanent and reigning ideology, and the Dems the permanent controlling party (didn't quite work). Media Matters, the ACS, Brookings, CfAP? Are these a few?

Nothing you quoted from Norquist revealed any "explicit end of achieving single party/single ideology domination over a nation's citizens." So where are you getting that?

Why is it not just your characterization of his goal of making conservative gains permanent? And how is that different from what every liberal Democrat activist and party actor does? How does it differ from Obama's repeated instruction that Republicans were to sit in the back seat and stop talking? Obama hasn't just said he "hopes" ACA will be permanent; he has repeatedly declared that he will entertain no efforts to repeal it. How is that not "explicitly totalitarian"?

I won't wait for answers, since it is apparent you have none. You are just repeating the message, ad nauseum.


Posted by: quarterback1 | February 11, 2011 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of Con Propaganda ... here is QB right on cue.

Later.

God bless the Egyptian People.

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 9:10 AM | Report abuse

@wbgonne

"I really hope Wikileaks or somebody else gets hold of the COC/Koch Bros secret documents. They could blow the lid off the Con Propaganda and disinformation campaign."

Indeed. Karma can be such a MFer. Ask Bernie Madoff. Someday the robber barons will get theirs.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 9:11 AM | Report abuse

P.S., If you want to follow what's happening in Egypt, Al-Jazeera English is the way to go.

http://english.aljazeera.net/watch_now/

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 9:13 AM | Report abuse

As to whether Thomas will recuse himself on the basis that his political affiliations and preferences might affect his decision on this case or others, I don't think there's any question about the outcome here. An explicit goal of the Federalist Society is to use the position of legal prominence and influence so as to assert "traditional values"

"This entails reordering priorities within the legal system to place a premium on individual liberty, traditional values, and the rule of law. It also requires restoring the recognition of the importance of these norms among lawyers, judges, law students and professors. In working to achieve these goals, the Society has created a conservative and libertarian intellectual network that extends to all levels of the legal community."

http://www.fed-soc.org/aboutus/

Posted by: bernielatham | February 11, 2011 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Some of you may be aware of the "Herculean" effort to save Whooping Cranes as a species.
Maybe you've seen the cute movie...think it starred Jeff Daniels where folks started using ultralights to get the cranes to migrate south.

Ahhh that such heart warming would have a happy ending. Alas those ultralights bring the cranes into the heart of Dixie...you know where we have some citizens who value their guns more than their teeth...and it shows in their smiles.
Alas it also shows up in even worse fashion...

http://www.tampabay.com/news/environment/wildlife/losing-endangered-whooping-cranes-to-gunfire-not-acceptable/1150817

CHASSAHOWITZKA — They have survived ferocious winter winds, power lines and even bobcats. Now, the endangered whooping cranes may be facing their biggest obstacle yet.

Bullets.

Over the last year and a half, five cranes meticulously raised and conditioned have been shot and killed along their migratory route, from Wisconsin to Central Florida and other areas of the South.

That means about 5 percent of the estimated 100 whooping cranes in the eastern U.S. have been lost, a devastating blow to the partnership of public and private agencies behind a 10-year initiative to repopulate the species.

"The amount of effort that goes into a program such as this — hatching young, raising them, teaching them to migrate — is absolutely huge," said Tom MacKenzie, a spokesman for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. "The loss of any of those birds to nonnatural causes is not acceptable."

The latest crane to be found dead was discovered Jan. 28 in Cherokee County, Ala., where some of the birds roost for the winter. It is unclear if any of the five dead birds were shot in the air or on the ground.

The bird found in Alabama was one that learned the route from the Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in Wisconsin to the Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge by following ultralight aircraft.

The death was especially difficult for organizers because the bird had nested with a female in the spring and the pair produced a chick, though it did not survive. To date, only three wild chicks from the reintroduction program have survived long enough to begin the migration.

"This is a 6-year-old bird, one of a couple of dozen that are old enough, sexually mature, and could breed," said Liz Condie of Operation Migration, which conducts the ultralight migration.

"This crane had a chick. Could this be any freaking worse?" Condie said."

Sorry to start your weekend off on such a downer. Yeah for the NRA...we get to keep our guns and who needs any stinkin' teeth anyway...yeeehaaaa

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 9:20 AM | Report abuse

QB, you're already at the JakeD level and on your way down to RFR level.

You seem to think this blog is your personal sandbox and readers are captivated by your little urinating contests. They're not. This phony non-issue over your use of the concept of totalitarianism as applied to "Obamacare" is of NO INTEREST TO ANYONE.

Why don't you go chase an ambulance and see if you can drum up a client.

Christ what a noisesome pest.

Posted by: caothien9 | February 11, 2011 9:24 AM | Report abuse

rukidding-Thanks for the reply.

Maybe I'm a complete Obama slappy or maybe I'm missing a piece of the puzzle (perhaps both), but unless you read the administration's Egyptian position in stark black and white terms, I don't see the contradictory positions. The comments, like virtually all political comments, were nuanced and laregly non-committal. This obviously bothers people like wbgonne, but I don't see how there was much to gain by taking a stronger position one way or the other. Nor do I think it would have played much of a role in the ultimate outcome, if it had any role at all.

Anyway, the language by Obama referenced by Obama is plenty strong in my opinion and ultimately will be the position people associate with this crisis, rather than the middling and alleged contradictory opinions taken over the last week or so.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 11, 2011 9:25 AM | Report abuse

[Greg drooled: "Soros Soros Soros Soros Soros!"]

Soros' Open Society Institute (OSI) has dispensed more than $5 billion to a multitude of Leftist organizations. With assets of $1.93 billion as of 2008, OSI alone donates scores of millions of dollars annually to Leftist causes.

Soros' Shadow Party raised more than $300 million for Democrat candidates in 2004, prompting MoveOn PAC director Eli Pariser, to boast, "Now it's our party. We bought it, we own it."

*owned*

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 11, 2011 9:26 AM | Report abuse

Here's an idea for the NRA.

Let the hunters hunt each other instead of shooting whooping cranes and deer.

EVERYONE WINS.

Posted by: caothien9 | February 11, 2011 9:27 AM | Report abuse

Except for the dead hunters (isn't it funny how they truly believe DEERS should have the right to life but not human embryos?).

Posted by: clawrence12 | February 11, 2011 9:33 AM | Report abuse

@ashot

Agree with your observations. When Zakaria was on last night CNN was also reporting that the State Dept had released his remarks to ME satellite nets and presumably there was a very quick translation into Arabic.

I admittedly admire Obama, but I'm far from an Obamabot...I'm still peoed about HCR..and about yet another "surge" in Afghanistan, but he has handled this as deftly as possible IMO.

The saddest part of all is the domestic politics, and the huge Israeli lobby ready to pounce, absolute looney tunes like the walrus Bolton who are given a platform despite the absymal failure of the positions that moron has taken..

And so ashot...what happens if Obama's words are tranlated into Arabic..and some of those hundreds of thousands are given even more motivation...and the Army begins mowing them down. Will Obama be seen as "on the right side" or will there be a pack of jackel righties waiting to pounce and say..."We told you he should not have done that, look how many people he got killed.'

Then you have the mental midgets like clawrence who are literally rooting for Obama's downfall. Obama disturbs these folks so deeply at an existential level that they really don't care about Egyptian lives or America's reputation it's all about a singular notion...OBAMA'S DOWNFALL!

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Greenwald's comments on the recent corporate-goon targeting of him re Wikileaks...

http://www.salon.com/news/wikileaks/index.html?story=/opinion/greenwald/2011/02/11/campaigns

Posted by: bernielatham | February 11, 2011 9:36 AM | Report abuse

"I can't wrap my head around what the Koch's want with information about the children of their political opponents?

Are they that sick they would go after family members?"

The emails reveal somewhat less than the sensational characterizations here and at TP. (Who'da thunk it?)

Let's hope they won't emulate the Democrats in going after Sarah Palin's family or calling out Mary Cheney in a presidential debate. Or the SEIU's bussing thug "protestors" to a bank VP's house, where they terrorized his teenage son.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 11, 2011 9:39 AM | Report abuse

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-12307698

I like the BBC live coverage better than AJ, they have access to more and better experts, IMO. Just kidding, but it is a good alternative.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 11, 2011 9:39 AM | Report abuse

"deer" is it's own plural, Jake

Most *third graders* know that.

Nobody believes you actually care about fetuses. You just use abortion as an excuse to be a pain in the azz, just li,e you used to do with Obama's bleedin' birth certificate. An aborted fetus had more of a life than you have.

Posted by: caothien9 | February 11, 2011 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Why on earth would the Dems put up a confirmed loser like Perriello for a Senate seat that we really need to win?

Posted by: converse | February 11, 2011 9:42 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne, be careful what you wish for. It gets REALLY hot here. It will slam into you as you leave a room.

Although not in March.

But wow, I forgot it is so close to Mardi Gras. And I haven't even had any King Cake yet this year.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 11, 2011 9:43 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne and mikefromArlington, I don't seem to recall either of you that bent out of shape regarding journ-O-list or Andrew Sullivan going after Trig Palin.

Back on topic, Clarence Thomas should not recuse himself as current Supreme Court rules would allow him to remain on the case even if she were a partner at one of the law firms actually challenging ObamaCare, let alone a lobbyist who was against its passage. On the other hand, Elena Kagan must recuse herself if she opined on the merits as Solicitor General.

Posted by: clawrence12 | February 11, 2011 9:45 AM | Report abuse

One graph from Glenn (do read the whole thing)...

"But after learning a lot more over the last couple of days, I now take this more seriously -- not in terms of my involvement but the broader implications this story highlights. For one thing, it turns out that the firms involved here are large, legitimate and serious, and do substantial amounts of work for both the U.S. Government and the nation's largest private corporations (as but one example, see this email from a Stanford computer science student about Palantir). Moreover, these kinds of smear campaigns are far from unusual; in other leaked HB Gary emails, ThinkProgress discovered that similar proposals were prepared for the Chamber of Commerce to attack progressive groups and other activists (including ThinkProgress). And perhaps most disturbing of all, Hunton & Williams was recommended to Bank of America's General Counsel by the Justice Department -- meaning the U.S. Government is aiding Bank of America in its defense against/attacks on WikiLeaks."

Posted by: bernielatham | February 11, 2011 9:45 AM | Report abuse

"It'll be interesting to see how far this goes."

Spare yourself the suspense. Thomas doesn't even come close to having a conflict of interest. The accusation doesn't even pass a laugh test.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 11, 2011 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Professor Maged Boutros, a senior member of the ruling NDP party, has told the BBC World Service that President Mubarak is "like a figurehead now. He has delegated all power to his vice-president." BBC

It is apparent the secret police etc. have so effectively purged potential opposition leaders, there simply are none. So no one knows what to do next.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 11, 2011 9:46 AM | Report abuse

Here's an idea for the NRA.

Let the hunters hunt each other instead of shooting whooping cranes and deer.

EVERYONE WINS.

Posted by: caothien9

LMAO I'll second that!

Here's another thought. As a child of Kentucky I have certainly been hunting.
In my later years I've tried hunting wildlife with a camera. I can state unequivocally that is is a far greater challenge, requiring far more skill, to hunt wildlife with a camera, trying to get that great pic, than it is with a gun. Of course admittedly you don't get to KILL anything so what's the point?

BTW There is another form of hunting in the mountains of Kentucky that I had the privilege of joining once. It's coon hunting. You gather with these incredible dogs..and a group of perhaps a half dozen guys. You run through the woods in the middle of the night until one of the dogs finally trees a coon. And that's it...no killing of the coon...just a "friendly" competition. Before PETA jumps my arse I do realize the coarseness of the sport. The coons didn't choose to participate and the dogs end up with pieces of ear missing and other battle scars. But all in all the dogs obviously love it...it's their nature isn't it..the hunters are only their to prove who has the best dogs...and the coons...well at least they get the last laugh as a group of hunters trudge away at 3AM dogs in tow. I must confess it was quite exciting...perhaps because I knew no creature had to die for anyone's pleasure.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 9:47 AM | Report abuse

[cao bedwets: "readers are captivated"]

qb clearly has you enthralled.

*owned*

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 11, 2011 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Remember that warning that I have been posting about how the the Supreme Court's Gang Of Five Right Wing Activists have turned the country over to the Oligarch's?

The Club For Growth is now running ads in Wisconsin, calling for voters to reelect
State Supreme Court Justice David Prosser.

We have met Egypt and it is Us.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 11, 2011 9:48 AM | Report abuse

Remember that warning that I have been posting about how the the Supreme Court's Gang Of Five Right Wing Activists have turned the country over to the Oligarchs?

The Club For Growth is now running ads in Wisconsin, calling for voters to reelect
State Supreme Court Justice David Prosser.

We have met Egypt and it is Us.
/

Posted by: Liam-still | February 11, 2011 9:49 AM | Report abuse

again, with proper format, sorry...

But after learning a lot more over the last couple of days, I now take this more seriously - not in terms of my involvement but the broader implications this story highlights. For one thing, it turns out that the firms involved here are large, legitimate and serious, and do substantial amounts of work for both the U.S. Government and the nation's largest private corporations (as but one example, see this email from a Stanford computer science student about Palantir). Moreover, these kinds of smear campaigns are far from unusual; in other leaked HB Gary emails, ThinkProgress discovered that similar proposals were prepared for the Chamber of Commerce to attack progressive groups and other activists (including ThinkProgress). And perhaps most disturbing of all, Hunton & Williams was recommended to Bank of America's General Counsel by the Justice Department - meaning the U.S. Government is aiding Bank of America in its defense against/attacks on WikiLeaks.

Posted by: bernielatham | February 11, 2011 9:49 AM | Report abuse

"owned" Such a very mature statement. I hadn't heard that since the 8th grade. Oh I get it...consider the source!

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 9:50 AM | Report abuse

Let's hope they won't emulate the Democrats in going after Sarah Palin's family

==

Democrats didn't "go after Palin's family."

Palin has paraded around her weirdly named kids like a welfare mom dragging them to the caseworker, all but waving "Trig" around by the leg. Then whining when anyone mentions them.

And for all the lies she's told, don't pretend Palin deserves a break. And if their online life is any indication, her kids are nasty little savages.

Posted by: caothien9 | February 11, 2011 9:53 AM | Report abuse

caothien9, if I don't care about killing deer, I certainly don't care about the plural. Also, I've never posted anything more about Obama's birth certificate than what Chris Matthews has noted. If you are going to insist on mistaking me for JakeD, at least get that right.

Posted by: clawrence12 | February 11, 2011 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Claw- "Back on topic, Clarence Thomas should not recuse himself as current Supreme Court rules would allow him to remain on the case even if she were a partner at one of the law firms actually challenging ObamaCare, let alone a lobbyist who was against its passage."
----------------------------------------
Whether the rules require recusal and whether he should recuse himself are different questions. I do tend to agree with your and QB's ultimate opinions that I don't see a conflict of interest here that warrants recusal. I just find it interesting how many different avenues are being used by both sides to either get the bill upheld or overturned.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 11, 2011 9:57 AM | Report abuse

"ElBaradei"

Has the support of 4% of the Egyptian population according to this poll taken Feb 5-8.

http://www.washingtoninstitute.org/html/pdf/pollock-Egyptpoll.pdf

Key findings:

•This is not an Islamic uprising. The Muslim Brotherhood is “approved” by just 15%, and its leaders get barely 1% in a presiden;al straw vote. Asked to pick national priorites, just 12% choose shariah over national power, democracy, or economic development. Asked to explain the uprising, economic conditions, corruption, and
unemployment (30‐40% each) far outpace “regime not Islamic enough” (7%).

•Surprisingly, asked two different ways about the peace treaty with Israel, more support it (37%) than oppose it (22%). Only 18% approve of either Hamas or Iran. And a mere 5% say the uprising occurred because the regime is “too pro‐Israel.”

•El Baradei has very little popular support in a presidential straw vote (4%), far outpaced by Amr Moussa (29%) But Mubarak and Omar Suleiman each get 18%.

•A narrow plurality (36% vs. 29%) say Egypt should have good relations with the U.S. And just 8% say the uprising is against a “too pro‐American regime.” Still, something over half disapprove of our handling of this crisis and say they don’t trust the U.S. at all.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 11, 2011 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Except for the dead hunters (isn't it funny how they truly believe DEERS should have the right to life but not human embryos?).

Posted by: clawrence12 | February 11, 2011 9:33 AM
.........................

So what you are saying Claw/AKA JakeD is: Hunters have no self control, and will shoot each other. I have more respect for them than that, even if you do not. There is only one Dick Cheney.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 11, 2011 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Give it up Jake, everyone knows it's you. Exact same pouting with lower lip thrust out. You're way WAY too stupid to pull off a dual moniker.

Posted by: caothien9 | February 11, 2011 10:01 AM | Report abuse

The games Republicans are playing with the budget are nonsense. Non-defense discretionary is a minuscule share of the budget, and $100bn in one-year cuts is a joke.

Worth noting: the Democrats cut $500 billion out of Medicare spending. And they cut the growth trend, so every year they save MORE money than the year before.

If Republicans were serious about spending, there's a lot to go after. Pharma costs in Medicare and Medicaid, device costs in same, wildly unnecessary defense spending... real money savings with no downside outcomes.

Instead, they plan to save money by cutting birth control and prenatal care. GENIUS move. Clearly, these morons have no idea how much a single night at a neonatal intensive care unit costs. There will be NO savings. Oh, but there will be more sick babies...win-win!

Posted by: theorajones1 | February 11, 2011 10:02 AM | Report abuse

"Whether the rules require recusal and whether he should recuse himself are different questions."

Are you suggesting that he "should" recuse himself even though the rules don't require it? Why?

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 11, 2011 10:02 AM | Report abuse

Mubarak turns over day to day power to Suleiman.

How do we evaluate if that is really a step in the right direction?

Imagine a headline, back in 2001.

Saddam remains President, but has turned over all day to day power to Chemical Ali!

Posted by: Liam-still | February 11, 2011 10:04 AM | Report abuse

Are you suggesting that he "should" recuse himself even though the rules don't require it? Why?

Posted by: quarterback1
---------------------------

Do you simply read a sentence you disagree with it, stop reading, and copy and paste the offending sentence into your next post.
I agreed with you!

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 11, 2011 10:06 AM | Report abuse

"Do you simply read a sentence you disagree with it, stop reading, and copy and paste the offending sentence into your next post.
I agreed with you!"

Nope, I don't understand what your first sentence means.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 11, 2011 10:09 AM | Report abuse

From the previous Clarence (no relation) Thomas discussion thread:

"Justice Scalia has pointed out the distinction between Supreme Court and lower judges, as to resolving any doubts in favor of recusal: "That might be sound advice if I were sitting on a Court of Apoeals ... There, my place would be taken by another judge, and the case would proceed normally. On the Supreme Court, however, the consequence is different: The Court proceeds with eight Justices, raising the possibility that, by reason of a tie vote, it will find itself unable to resolve the significant legal issue presented by the case."

As to Thomas's wife, that is clearly covered by the Supreme Court's 1993 Statement of Recusal Policy: "We do not think it would serve the public interest to go beyond the requirements of the statute, and to recuse ourselves, out of an excess of caution, whenever a relative is a partner in the firm before us or acted as a lawyer at an earlier stage. Even one unnecessary recusal impairs the functioning of the Court." If Justice Thomas would not have to recuse himself even if his wife was a partner in one of the firms arguing this case, how much less so that she was simply a lobbyist against ObamaCare?"

As quarterback1 also noted:

"Indeed, the 'argument' for Thomas to recuse is patently absurd and political. It would make more sense for Ginsburg to have recused herself in all sex discrimination cases, because she litigated such cases for plaintiffs and the ACLU."

Posted by: clawrence12 | February 11, 2011 10:10 AM | Report abuse

ruk -- i've had two blueticks coonhound. hunting dogs that were turned loose. rescued our first 6 years ago. he died over the summer. awesome dog. was going to wait awhile, but got an email about one that needed a home and couldn't say no. had her about a month now. can't say enough wonderful things about the breed.

Posted by: NoVAHockey | February 11, 2011 10:10 AM | Report abuse

"This is not an Islamic uprising."

That is a fact. The silence from Hamas, which certainly has a dog in the hunt, is deafening. Fatah is mum, Hezbollah, not to mention the fanatics...silence. It is amazing really, perhaps the strangest part of this. You'd think the The Death to America crowd would be all over this.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 11, 2011 10:12 AM | Report abuse

"ElBaradei Has the support of 4% of the Egyptian population according to this poll taken Feb 5-8."

Sure, but that's for "president" and no one has more than 26% and Mubarak/Sueliman get 33% between them. So I'm nor sure how much that says about anything. But, in any case, I'm not in love w ElBaradei. My point in mentioning him early on was that I suspect the U.S. was reluctant to embrace the revolution b/c they feared ElBaradei (or someone less "friendly" to the U.S.) gaining power. That's why we opted for continuing the Mubarak Regime by backing Sueliman. That was a big mistake by the WH, as I said the time. I have seen nothing since to suggest otherwise. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if we have emboldened Mubarak by backing Sueliman.

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 10:12 AM | Report abuse

DDAWD:

I've been visiting NOLA annually since the 80s, usually for JazzFest. I've never been for MG and I was only there once in the summer and it was hot but not unbearable so I was lucky. This year, the hotter the better! I am SO sick of winter.

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 10:17 AM | Report abuse


"Nope, I don't understand what your first sentence means."
---------------------------------------
The why didn't you say that rather than saying "Are you suggesting that he "should" recuse himself even though the rules don't require it"? Particularly when I explicitly said I agreed with you.

It means that I can imagine scenarios where a Judge/Justice may recuse himself/herself because of a a conflict of interest, even thought it isn't one which explicitly requires recusal under the court rules.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 11, 2011 10:17 AM | Report abuse

caothien9, Democrats (including yourself) did go after Palin's family. Perhaps you also missed where rukidding7 and FairlingtonBlade vouched that I am not JakeD? If pointing out either of these facts seems like more "pouting with lower lip thrust out" I don't care about that either.

Posted by: clawrence12 | February 11, 2011 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Any poll claims about the views of the Egyptian population have to be viewed with extreme skepticism.

People who have lived in a police state, for decades, are always very reluctant to speak their minds.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 11, 2011 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Greg, if I were you, I'd turn up the heat on what ThinkProgress exposed.

http://thinkprogress.org/2011/02/10/chamberleaks-target-families/

You've got to wonder if they are planning to go after your family also and anyone else for that matter who reports negatively on their clients.

Distributing pictures of their children and private information about what schools, etc they attend is terribly disconcerting.

I hope the networks pick up on this. It's not some small thing.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 11, 2011 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Ruk, I think the kneejerk AIPAC lobby was stronger in the WJC years, b/c so many American Jews no longer support it. In fact, there is a pro-Israel but anti-settler and pro-Palestinian state lobby now, as well. Don't remember its name.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | February 11, 2011 10:20 AM | Report abuse

@NoVa

Share your enthusiam for the "blueticks" they are special animals.

I'm basically an animal lover, and a lover of fully formed "life" in general. And I don't know if you've ever been out on a "coon hunt", they do take place at an obscene time of the evening..lol...but they are quite exciting, and to watch the "blueticks" do their thing is impressive.
I realize that PETA would not approve but at least the dog owners do their best to preserve their dogs and protect the coons...after all they want to "hunt" them again in the future.

As for hunting in general I confess to being conflicted. We have a cottage on the Keeweenaw Peninsula of Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Sometimes the deer population gets out of hand and so far hunting seems to be the most "humane" way of thinning the herd. I do get that. And most deer hunters..in fact the vast majority..actually do eat the meat...I'm not a big fan of venison..too gamey..but seasoned properly it can be tasty.and of course some folks enjoy prepared in almost any fashion.

On the other side of the coin is one of our neighbors a few miles down the road.
Ironically his name is Jake...true...he seeds areas of the woods with apples and other treats to attract bears. When the season arrives he then contracts with "hunters?" from Milwaukee, Chicago, etc.
They come up and Jakey takes them to the spot where he has baited the bears to make sure they get a "kill". Real sporting eh?

We used to see bears every year when we spent some summertime at our cottage. No longer! In fact Jakey has been so successful that he has killed his own business model. This type of "hunting" is still prevalent in many parts of the nation and especially in Canada. You pays your bucks and the guides take you to a well baited area where you are virtually guaranteed your "kill". And what the hell...if you're a terrible shot..can you say Dick Cheney...they'll take care of that for you as well. EVERYBODY gets to take a "trophy" home. That type of "sport" does make me want to puke.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 10:24 AM | Report abuse

mikefromArlington, I don't seem to recall you that bent out of shape regarding journ-O-list or Andrew Sullivan going after Trig Palin.

Posted by: clawrence12 | February 11, 2011 10:26 AM | Report abuse

claw, you think distributing pictures of journalists children and the schools they attend is OK?

Are you a fascist or something?

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 11, 2011 10:28 AM | Report abuse

wbg,

Part of the problem with pushing too hard on Mubarak to leave is that a strong leader for the opposition has not emerged from the crowds yet. A power vacuum at this point would not be a good thing. Following Al Jazeera for all these days has shown a lot of evidence in the streets that the demonstrators are highly skeptical of El Baradei even as their spokesman, let alone as a presidential candidate. Meanwhile, the US media seems (to me, at least) to cling to what he has to say because he is a known quantity in the west.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 11, 2011 10:29 AM | Report abuse

"The why didn't you say that rather than saying "Are you suggesting that he "should" recuse himself even though the rules don't require it"?"

Because it seemed that's what you were suggesting.

"It means that I can imagine scenarios where a Judge/Justice may recuse himself/herself because of a a conflict of interest, even thought it isn't one which explicitly requires recusal under the court rules."

I suppose that can be true, although it has a sort of distinction-without-a-difference quality the way ethical rules work.

SCOTUS is a bit different than other courts, though, because it is the court of last resort, and by recusing without cause, particularly in a landmark case, a justice would arguably be compromising the constitutional system and doing something worse than participating. The truth is that Supremes are rarely ever going to have a meaningful "conflict" unless they have an investment directly in a party to a case (which Ginsburg's husband did have, and she didn't recuse). They generally have strong views that they aren't going to change based on the kinds of reasons typically offered up against them. Thomas is a Commerce minimalist, just because he is. He always has been.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 11, 2011 10:29 AM | Report abuse

@Mark

Agree with your comment re the strength of AIPAC during the WJC years.

I don't know if you are reacting to my earlier comments that Reagan and WJC didn't have to deal with the "obscenely powerful" Jewish lobby...I was not referencing their power relative to it's current state...but rather to the fact that by and large Israel had no dog in the fight during the Philippines and Indonesian "revolutions."

I agree with you that AIPAC may have been even more difficult to deal with for WJC..but again the Balkans...Indonesia..do not engender the same emotions in Israelis as does Egypt.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 10:32 AM | Report abuse

"In fact, there is a pro-Israel but anti-settler and pro-Palestinian state lobby now, as well. Don't remember its name."

J-Street

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 11, 2011 10:34 AM | Report abuse

"Part of the problem with pushing too hard on Mubarak to leave is that a strong leader for the opposition has not emerged from the crowds yet. A power vacuum at this point would not be a good thing. Following Al Jazeera for all these days has shown a lot of evidence in the streets that the demonstrators are highly skeptical of El Baradei even as their spokesman, let alone as a presidential candidate. Meanwhile, the US media seems (to me, at least) to cling to what he has to say because he is a known quantity in the west."

All fair enough. But if you read ElBaradei's Op-Ed in the Time today, he is suggesting: 1) Mubarak step down immediately and 2) a 3-person transitional leadership be appointed until the Const. reform and elections within 1 year. That sounds perfect to me, regardless of whether ElBaradei is one of the three members or not. The longer things stay in this unsettled state the more likelihood that violence will ensue. This can't continue indefinitely. At the very least, the WH should signal agreement with ElBaradei's idea and pull the aid money. We will show ourselves to be on the right side before it is too late to matter.

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 10:35 AM | Report abuse

"Hosni Mubarak realizes he must step down and is looking for an honorable way out, a former Israeli defense minister who has long known Egypt's embattled leader said Friday. Binyamin Ben-Eliezer of Israel's Labor Party said he spoke with Mubarak just hours before the Egyptian president's speech late Thursday." AP

Posted by: shrink2 | February 11, 2011 10:37 AM | Report abuse

The fact that Mitt Romney's name has popped up on this hyper partisan blog cannot bode well for the President.

While I am no big fan of Mitt, I understand that a presidential campaign is a long, long affair. Therefore any serious candidate must begin campaigning very early indeed.

Since Obama is the most likely presidential nominee of the Democrats, the Republican contenders will start taking whacks at him NOW.

that means two long years of Obama getting hammered in paid advertisements, campaign collateral material and stump speeches. the time and energy it will take Obama to fend off this assault will make his already shaky administration look even more of a shambles.

The disarray around the Egyptian revolt will be magnafied by contenders for Obama's job who will sieze every opportunity to castigate the president.

This was certainly the situation Mr Bush found himself in when denying him re election became the primary goal of the Democrats and their liberal camp followers.

Once again we'll see that sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 11, 2011 10:37 AM | Report abuse

QB- "I suppose that can be true, although it has a sort of distinction-without-a-difference quality the way ethical rules work."
---------------------------------

I agree, as I was typing it I was thinking of excluding the first sentence and just agreeing with you guys, but I thought it was worth noting given the way claw's post was phrased. Recusal is primarily a judgment call rather than an application of a test or rule of some sort.
---------------------------------

"SCOTUS is a bit different than other courts, though, because it is the court of last resort, and by recusing without cause, particularly in a landmark case, a justice would arguably be compromising the constitutional system and doing something worse than participating."
-------------------------------------
I think this is a better justification than just saying the rules dont' identify having a wife as a lobbyist as being a conflict. As a lawyer, I have little choice but to believe that judges care more about justice than politics and would therefore recuse themselves if they couldn't be unbiased. If I believe otherwise, I'm largely wasting my time.

And I imagine Justice Thomas would have ruled against PPACA at any point in his legal career.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 11, 2011 10:39 AM | Report abuse

mikefromArlington, yes (ever since Trig Palin was declared "fair game" by YOUR side).

Posted by: clawrence12 | February 11, 2011 10:40 AM | Report abuse

"A leading Shiite Muslim preacher, meanwhile, urged governments to heed protests that have erupted in several areas of the Arab world. Ignoring the demands of protesters "will absolutely lead to unpleasant results," Ahmed al-Safi, a spokesman for Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, Iraq's most revered Shiite cleric, told Muslim worshippers during Friday prayers.

In the Gaza Strip, a Friday protest inspired by the Egypt demonstrations — and organized on Facebook — against Hamas rule in the Palestinian territory attracted virtually no supporters. Hamas security personnel in uniform and plainclothes were deployed around the areas where the protests, organized by supporters of the rival Fatah, were to take place." AP

Posted by: shrink2 | February 11, 2011 10:41 AM | Report abuse

ashotinthedark, I think it would be better if you just agreed with us and excluded posting everything else too.

Posted by: clawrence12 | February 11, 2011 10:45 AM | Report abuse

[rukidding7 whined: "owned" Such a very mature statement. I hadn't heard that since the 8th grade. Oh I get it...consider the source!"]

In 2004, MoveOn PAC director Eli Pariser, boasted, "Now it's our party. We bought it, we own it."

Apparently, ruk was in the 8th grade when Soros bought his party in 2004.

*owned*

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 11, 2011 10:45 AM | Report abuse

claw, so some blogger asking why Palin flies to Alaska and then drives to Wasilla AFTER her water breaks justifies private firms targeting peoples children by passing their pictures and private information around in emails.

Don't you think passing pictures of peoples kids around is a little creepy? Or is passing pics of kids around something that comes natural for you?

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 11, 2011 10:47 AM | Report abuse

"As to whether Thomas will recuse himself on the basis that his political affiliations and preferences might affect his decision on this case or others, I don't think there's any question about the outcome here. An explicit goal of the Federalist Society is to use the position of legal prominence and influence so as to assert "traditional values""

and rule of law -- you forgot that.

What another mischievously misleading argument this is, suggesting that Thomas should be expected to recuse because of "political affiliations and preferences" but won't because of the FS's goals of restoring respect for liberty, rule of law, and traditional values to the judicial system.

We can equally say it's doubtful that Ginsburg (or Breyer, Kagan, or Sotamayor) will recuse themselves, because of the ACS's agenda:

http://www.acslaw.org/about

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 11, 2011 10:48 AM | Report abuse

mikefromArlington, yes (ever since Trig Palin was declared "fair game" by YOUR side).

Posted by: clawrence12
-------------------------------------
The old, "you started it"....is that you skip? What exactly do you win if you get to the bottom first?

I'm torn on the subject, when she accepted the VP nod, Palin talked about her son's service to our country, brought her family up on staged, and it wasn't long before she brought up Trig herself and gave herself the hockey mom mantel. So I'm not so sure that she didn't open the door. On the other hand, I think we are all better off if family stays off limits, particularly a child like Trig. Hmmmm...I'm being awfully contradictory this morning.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 11, 2011 10:50 AM | Report abuse

ruk -- have only seen my dogs hunt kongs. they've never failed. but i have seen them pick up the scent of something while hiking through state parks and start tracking. it's like you flip the "on" switch and they are all business.

Don't know anything about actual hunting. Never tried it. prefer to shoot at the the range or with my Nikon.

Posted by: NoVAHockey | February 11, 2011 10:51 AM | Report abuse

All, good new Adam Serwer post on the GOP's "post birtherism":

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

Posted by: Greg Sargent | February 11, 2011 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Soros backing candidates that would help progress social reforms and Koch backing candidates that help him game the system are two very different things Kaddafi. Even for a propaganda sponge such as yourself that should be apparent.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 11, 2011 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Thomas is not going to recuse himself, no matter what, so why are so many people wasting so much time, engaging in such a futile academic exercise?

He is not going to recuse himself, just like Scalia did not recuse himself, when cases came before him, that involved his Hunting Buddy, Dick Cheney.

You can be sure that Roberts will also not recuse himself, when ever reproductive rights issues come before him, even though his wife is a Pro-Birth Activist.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 11, 2011 10:54 AM | Report abuse

The Republican tire fire heats up.

"Rand Paul packed the largest crowd of the day into a cavernous conference room and forced CPAC's host, the American Conservative Union, to set up a large overflow hall nearby."

Posted by: shrink2 | February 11, 2011 10:56 AM | Report abuse

"But if you read ElBaradei's Op-Ed in the Time today, he is suggesting: 1) Mubarak step down immediately and 2) a 3-person transitional leadership be appointed until the Const. reform and elections within 1 year. That sounds perfect to me."

Yes, I read it, and I don't really disagree with it as an idea. What I would suggest to Mr. El Baradei is rather than writing an Op-ed in the NYT for western consumption, and obviously looking for the US to rally to his side and promote it, that he work the streets of Cairo and build support for it among the demonstrators. It's what they want that counts, and so far, there doesn't seem to be a strong coalition developing that could actually lead Egypt out of this crisis.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 11, 2011 10:57 AM | Report abuse

@mikefromArlington

I share your concern about the levels to which partisan politics has descended.

Children? Targeting journalists you do not agree with?

And I hear you Mike...this should be a MAJOR story but I fear it will not get much traction. It will be dismissed in our quicksand of "false equivalency" as just more partisan rancor and haggling.

But I'm like you...things are getting very Orwellian and it doesn't really bode well for our democracy. My source of hope is now confined to the internet, social networks, and Wikileaks. There may yet be a "chance" to keep them honest.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 10:58 AM | Report abuse

O/T:

John Cole --

"One thing that even the dim bulbs in the media should understand by now is that there is in fact a class war going on, and it is the rich and powerful who are waging it. Anyone who does anything that empowers the little people or that threatens the wealth and power of the plutocracy must be destroyed. There is a reason for these clowns going after Think Progress and unions, just like there is a reason they are targeting wikileaks and Glenn Greenwald, Planned Parenthood, and Acorn. To a lesser extent the fail parade that was the Daily Caller expose on Journolist was more of the same.

You have to understand the mindset- they are playing for keeps. The vast majority of the wealth isn’t enough. They want it all. Anything that gets in their way must be destroyed. They don’t care if they poison every stream or crack the foundation to your house or if your daughter dies getting a back alley abortion or if every one in your mining town has an inoperable tumor. They just don’t give a sh*t.

And they are well financed, have a strong infrastructure, a sympathetic media, and entire organizations dedicated to running cover for them. They’ve even created their own mythical ideology in which they are superhero Galtian overlords, and this lets a few rubes who babble ignorantly about the free market get to feel like they are playing along, when they are really just being played. It’s these guys versus all of us, yet half the people being rogered (Republicans and glibertarians and hell, half the Democrats) have been convinced the other side is a bigger threat to their well being than the people with all the power, money, and resources. Hell, even in this post I can guarantee that at least five shitheads will come in and tell me they don’t like Glenn Greenwald because he uses too many words or that Jane Hamsher is shrill or because neither of them fellate Obama to satisfaction. Talk about not f*cking getting it."

http://www.balloon-juice.com/2011/02/10/more-fallout-from-anonymous/

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Mubarak gone, instructs army to take over. They're cheering in the streets of Cairo and all over Egypt.

Posted by: lmsinca | February 11, 2011 11:05 AM | Report abuse

"What I would suggest to Mr. El Baradei is rather than writing an Op-ed in the NYT for western consumption, and obviously looking for the US to rally to his side and promote it, that he work the streets of Cairo and build support for it among the demonstrators. It's what they want that counts, and so far, there doesn't seem to be a strong coalition developing that could actually lead Egypt out of this crisis."

Sue:

Not to be snarky but the Egyptian People are in the midst of a revolution against a brutal long-term dictator. Considering that, you may be expecting a bit too much political sophistication and organization at the moment.

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Just announced on State TV.

Mubarak is out. He has turned the running of the country over to the military.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 11, 2011 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Incredible! I have butterflies in my stomach.

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Egypt is gonna Obama's Katrina!!!

Mark my words. Hold me to them. I will forever leave the blogosphere as mikefromArlington if I'm proven wrong!111!!!one!!!

Posted by: mikefromArlington | February 11, 2011 11:19 AM | Report abuse

Terrific news about Mubarak! Yeah!

wbg,

I think you missed my point. Just as you were justifiably incensed that the US would attempt to install Suleiman (though I never saw direct evidence of that), I think it would be just as bad for us to directly back El Baradei. The best we can do is encourage the powers that be to listen to the will of the Egyptians, and see who it is that the coalesce around.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 11, 2011 11:20 AM | Report abuse

@NoVa

"Never tried it. prefer to shoot at the the range or with my Nikon."

I'm with you there...except I have a Canon.:-) I've only had a few months but as I become more proficient I plan to eventually add a longer lens...any suggestions? It's an SLR and my "targets" will be wildlife and the majestic ore boats that pass our cottage out on Lake Superior. The ore boats are easy..just need a tripod, but they are very slow...wildlife..now that's a whole different animal. pun intended.

I occasionally still visit the range with my shotgun. They have a cool game there, not the usual skeet stuff..they simply line up targets at varying distances.

I find as I grow older, the noise and recoil are simply becoming too uncomfortable. I do recall the pleasure of the rifle range in basic training and so I'm thinking of getting a .22 for some fun can plinking at our summer cottage. Perhaps one of those replica's of the famous Winchester.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Kind of interesting to note that the WaPo has a link up on their front page to Al Jazeera's live coverage.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 11, 2011 11:22 AM | Report abuse

If their bank accounts continue to suffer because of the loss of tourism, then the Egyptian military brass, which owns all the tourist hotels etc, will make Mubarak an offer he can not refuse.

No tourists are going to travel to Egypt while this is going on, so I would not be at all surprised if Mubarak resigns by Monday or sooner.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 10, 2011 7:16 PM
...............................

It looks like that is just what has happened. Chemical Ali Suleiman must also go now.

Look out Despotic leaders of Jordan, Saudia Arabia, Syria, Libya, etc.

It will soon be your turn in the barrel.


Posted by: Liam-still | February 11, 2011 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Even though it is still a military dictatorship, now political parties need to coalesce and then become organized, people need to allow themselves to be led. A proper constitution needs to be written and accepted by the street.

The from scratch construction of the apparatus of democracy has to go along with the destruction of the vast patronage/spoils system that has been the National Democratic Party. Some of the Eastern European countries were able to do it in the post Soviet years, but the -stan countries in particular reverted to dictators for the most part.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 11, 2011 11:23 AM | Report abuse

"Look out Despotic leaders of Jordan, Saudia Arabia, Syria, Libya, etc."

IRAN!

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 11:24 AM | Report abuse

"it is still a military dictatorship"

Pretty bad when that is a step forward but there you go. It could still go very wrong but assuming it doesn't and based on what's happened so far:

Bravo to the Obama Administration!

"You are what your record says you are."
(B. Parcells)

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 11:29 AM | Report abuse

As I said yesterday, the Muslim Brotherhood has called this a military coup, they have staked out their starting point in the power struggle to come.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 11, 2011 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Question for all following the Egyptian situation. I too am happy for at least an "apparent" success for the protestors...however lots of time for this "revolution" to still get hijacked...

But my question is..even if Egypt turned into a truly pure Jeffersonian Democracy (not likely just a hypothetical) do we suppose that would put an end to the endless bleating about Obama's F.P. and his "apology" tours?

Golly gee I really miss the "hubris" tours of mental midgets like walrus Bolton.

Posted by: rukidding7 | February 11, 2011 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Obama is going to give a speech about Egypt later today.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 11, 2011 11:36 AM | Report abuse

"Obama is going to give a speech about Egypt later today."

Woo-Hoo! Here's one I'm really looking forward to! Good times. Maybe humanity's luck is changing for the better.

Posted by: wbgonne | February 11, 2011 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, hooray for the folks in Egypt.

Is there a lesson in this for the American political class?

How did that old Mothers of Invention song go? Oh yeah:

"It can't happen here..."
Really?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 11, 2011 11:39 AM | Report abuse

The Egyptian constitution has been ignored. The speaker of parliament should be taking over the role of President. So why didn't he? The military is not going to let go of anything, this revolution is either just getting started, or it is already over.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 11, 2011 11:39 AM | Report abuse

[mikefromArlington: "Soros backing candidates that would help progress social reforms and Koch backing candidates that help him game the system are two very different things."]

George Soros isn't gaming the system? That assertion is beyond delusional, even for a deranged individual like you, mikey.

Take your Haldol.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 11, 2011 11:43 AM | Report abuse

ruk -- are you asking about specific lens suggestions? I'm not a gear guy. the best advice I can give you is not to worry about it. you can drop a ton of cash and spent a ton of time worrying about this lens or another. unless you're planning something really specific that needs a lens (African safari) that can handle a long focal length or you need a lens with a super fast shutter speed, your kit lens is your best bet as they are designed to do everything ok. save your cash for when you know your camera inside and out and start to feel limited by the kit lens.

worry about equivalent exposure first -- play around with capturing and freezing motion by tweaking the shutter speed. get to know what happens with you change the aperture

check out http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/notcamera.htm for tips.

Posted by: NoVAHockey | February 11, 2011 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Goodbye Israeli peace treaty.

Hello Hezbollah-Hamas (Shia-Sunni) coordinated genocidal offensive.

Posted by: KaddafiDelendaEst | February 11, 2011 11:52 AM | Report abuse

"Is there a lesson in this for the American political class?

How did that old Mothers of Invention song go? Oh yeah:

"It can't happen here..."
Really?"
----------------------------------
How refereshing, another thinly veild threat of revolution from skip. And after his prefered party won a whole bunch of seats in teh last election.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 11, 2011 11:57 AM | Report abuse

In re photos...I bought a Sony alpha model a few years ago. It is wonderful, my favorite the 70-300, the camera seems made for it. It is expensive and complex to learn, but it is just amazing what it can do and the lenses are relatively cheap. The best illustration, people are always accusing me of photoshopping my snaps. I don't have photoshop.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 11, 2011 12:10 PM | Report abuse

TO............caothien9 and ALL

RE: quarterback1 AND Robert H. Bork

cao I thank you for your comments last evening; and I appreciate being welcomed to this board.

quarterback1 is not worth my time, I know that.

QB's somewhat spirited though dishonest defense of Bork got me looking for more about Bork, as he is the most famous "reject" ever to have been nominated for a seat on the US Supreme Court.

I did find an article with some interesting stuff about Bork, and about Archibald Cox, who Bork fired (at Nixon's insistence) from his post as Watergate Special Prosecutor (i.e., after Attorney General Elliot Richardson resigned rather than dismiss Cox, and Richardson's second-in-command, Deputy AG William Ruckelshaus, did the same - - this was the event dubbed by journalists as the Saturday Night Massacre).

About Bork, he apparently is just not a very nice guy, as well as a lazy-bones who can't keep a steady job.

I found a great article exposing some of Bork's lack of dedication to students, single minded, my-way-or-the-highway manner of teaching, and other less-than-admirable qualities.

No wonder the only steady job Bork has had since being "rejected" for Supreme Court is a hack "scholar" position at the ultra-conservative Hudson Institute. Oh yeah he has been a faculty member at Univ. of Richmond and most recently at a 4th tier "Catholic" law school in Naples FL, but he never seems to teach or publish anything except his signature rants (see, e.g., http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2540408/posts [Welcome to Free Republic! America's exclusive site for God, Family, Country, Life & Liberty constitutional conservative activists!] and http://old.nationalreview.com/issue/bork200503231109.asp )

See page 42 from 1973
(A piece on Archibald Cox begins on page 39)

http://books.google.com/books?id=JucCAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA43&lpg=PA43&dq=yale+bork+cox&source=bl&ots=dht6f300nn&sig=it7cG3UBbGr7vzPOWo-6Bbx9mxU&hl=en&ei=AWBVTaXnMMXZgQf8pvWdDQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=2&ved=0CBoQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=yale%20bork%20cox&f=false

Posted by: smd1234 | February 11, 2011 12:12 PM | Report abuse

"quarterback1 is not worth my time, I know that."

Yet, nevertheless, you keep flailing.

"QB's somewhat spirited though dishonest defense of Bork got me looking for more about Bork, as he is the most famous "reject" ever to have been nominated for a seat on the US Supreme Court."

What you call a defense was simply pointing out that your claims about his supposed mediocrity as a nominee were ludicrously uninformed.

Now you've done some reading and type up a bunch of silly insults. Bork was an imperious teacher, what a shock! A 2L dissed his morality! He spends his time now at think tanks writing books and articles -- must be lazy!

How laughable. You still can't bring yourself to admit the simple facts that he was a full professor at YLS, before and after serving as SG, a judge of the DC Circuit (along with, e.g., Scalia and Ginsburg), and an influential thinker and writer in antitrust law and constitutional law.

Absolutely no one criticized him as underqualified, because it is a preposterous claim. Indeed, it would be hard to put together a better resume for the Supreme Court, and no liberal on the Court and probably no conservative then or now had a better one.

You are demonstrating obstinate thick-headedness on the installment plan. It isn't about Bork; it's about your trying to misinform people because you didn't know the facts to begin with.

Posted by: quarterback1 | February 11, 2011 1:41 PM | Report abuse

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