Monday Afternoon Open Thread

The Dodgers filed for bankruptcy.

Blago Guilty.

Gators start the College World Series finals tonight. Go Gators!

Open Thread.

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    Obama (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 06:59:57 PM EST
    Shhhh (5.00 / 5) (#27)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 08:01:07 AM EST
    Mustn't say that.

    What are you - A Bachmann supporter?
    A GOP fanatic?

    Please be extremely fearful before offering a criticism of the present corporate-representative-in-chief or we may find ourselves with a different one in 2012.

    Obama is playing three or four dimensional chess.
    He's not being cynical. Just trustworthy.
    Up is down, and down is out.

    It is all part of a progressive plan that will be abundantly clear around 2013 or '14 or '15 or '16 unless it won't be.


    Expected (none / 0) (#6)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 07:45:28 PM EST
    He has the ability to make them all go away by doing nothing when it matters. I don't expect to see the tax cuts many want this round given the GOPs position.  He has the ultimate trump card in 2012 when they will have to come to him for an extension.  

    This is playing out like a game theory hypo.  It gambles on him winning again but that's the risk.


    He has (5.00 / 2) (#7)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 08:22:11 PM EST
    no trump card in his deck. If he did, he wouldn't have put himself in this position in the first place.

    ABG: The DOD budget (none / 0) (#8)
    by christinep on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 08:43:14 PM EST
    Urged on by the WaPo article yesterday, some are speculating that a "resolution" might involve cuts in DOD (where, one guesses, there should be all kinds of combos.) If that is the case--joining together liberals with the new Repubs with their new focus on DOD cuts could get that number needed for an agreement and, for very different reasons, provide partial satisfaction to both sides.

    What do you think?

    <It would be a doozy to see that kind of agreement...which is why I'm finding myself holding back my expectations on that one.>  BTW, I tend to agree that the optimum play of the tax cut issue is in 2012....


    Christine (none / 0) (#20)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:36:59 AM EST
    I would be happy with that kind of compromise and think it is possible.  Only a fool goes at your enemy head on and expects to get a big win.  We could REALLY get defense spending under control in exchange for the tax increases and have it be a net win long term.  You'd have the GOP voting to substantially decrease military spending at a time when we are in 2 or 3 wars.  In any other environment that kind of once in a lifetime shot was something many thought we'd never see back when the yellow ribbons were still fresh on the trees.

    Now there is a story today that says the conservatives are getting real approvals for cuts from their constiuents sick of the wars.

    Obama could be in the process of starting a minor but reeal push back on the entire military industrial complex that could be historic and people.

    And I am supposed to see a two year extension of tax breaks as a huge failure?  I just don't think you can be looking at the big picture if you are.


    Wow. (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 07:58:11 AM EST
    Obama could be in the process of starting a minor but reeal push back on the entire military industrial complex that could be historic and people.

    Sure he could.

    And I am supposed to see a two year extension of tax breaks as a huge failure?  

    No. It is a raging success.


    LOL (5.00 / 3) (#28)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 08:16:31 AM EST
    Couldn't you tell?  He was being sarcastic...he just forgot and left off the <snark> tag....

    (oh how I wish).


    He couldn't have used the snark tag (none / 0) (#30)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 08:34:39 AM EST
    because that might have conveyed some real emotion, and that's a no-no if one wants to be taken seriously, don'tcha know?

    Going to be a billion reasons (5.00 / 2) (#37)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 09:46:13 AM EST
    why the Obama tax cuts were even more generous to the rich than Bush's were.

    By that definition, Obama's economic policies are a raging success. Just a matter of priorities. A billion dollars in campaign funds or policies that benefit the lower 98%. No contest really.  


    The idea that (none / 0) (#53)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:15:35 AM EST
    the lower 98% have received no benefit from Obama's policies is ludicrous. By definition, he extend tax breaks to those 98% and developed a healthcare plan aimed at helping those in that grouping more than anyone.  Under any proposed compromise, those folks would also continue to receive their cuts under any scenario.

    How well have people faired under (5.00 / 3) (#102)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:54:27 PM EST
    Obama's economic policies.

    According to NELP:

    • Lower-wage industries (those paying $9.03 -$12.91 per hour) accounted for just 23 percent of job losses, but fully 49 percent of recent growth.
    • Midwage industries ($12.92 -$19.04 per hour) accounted for 36 percent of job losses, and 37 percent of recent growth.
    • Higher-wage industries ($19.05 -$31.40 per hour) accounted for 40 percent of job loss, but only 14 percent of recent growth. NYT

    Once again, only 14% of the new jobs pay an hourly wage that will generate an annual income of $39,624 (based on 40 hr week) or higher.

    State, local layoffs to hit record levels

    State and local governments are forecast to shed up to 110,000 jobs in the third quarter, the first time the blood-letting has risen into the triple digits, according to IHS Global Insight.

    "We're on a downward path," said Greg Daco, principal U.S. economist at IHS. "It's not looking good."

    Long-Term Unemployment Worse Than During The Depression | CBS News reports: "About 6.2 million Americans, 45.1 percent of all unemployed workers in this country, have been jobless for more than six months -- a higher percentage than during the Great Depression." link

    But slumming in America is fast becoming a business model for some of Europe's leading companies, and they often do things here they would never think of doing at home. These companies -- not banks, primarily, but such gold-plated European manufacturers as BMW, Daimler, Volkswagen and Siemens, and retailers such as IKEA -- increasingly come to America (the South particularly) because labor is cheap and workers have no rights. In their eyes, we're becoming the new China. Our labor costs may be a little higher, but we offer stronger intellectual property protections and far fewer strikes than our unruly Chinese comrades. link

    Compared against:

    Oil Company Profits Reach Record Highs

    After-Tax Profits Reach Record High in Q1
    May 29, 2011 - After-Tax Profits Reach Record High in Q1 ... Corporate profits after tax (unadjusted) reached a new record high in the first quarter of 2011.

    U.S. gap between rich and poor worse than in some African and Mid East countries
    Daily Mail, UK - The gap between America's rich and poor is so extreme levels of inequality are worse in the land of the free than they are in many developing countries.The U.S. ranks way behind the European Union and the United Kingdom in terms of inequality of pay, figures show.In fact, the situation is so extreme the land of the free falls behind countries such as Cameroon, the Ivory Coast and revolutionary Egypt, Tunisia and Yemen - and only just in front of Uganda and Jamaica.


    Ever heard of a fellow (none / 0) (#59)
    by jeffinalabama on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:24:23 AM EST
    named N. Chauvin, ABG?

    I have not (none / 0) (#61)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:30:09 AM EST
    do tell.

    Here's a link (none / 0) (#68)
    by jeffinalabama on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:40:37 AM EST

    There's some debate over whether he was a real person or not, but he supposedly continued to support Napoleon even after the debacle at Waterloo.

    His name is the root of the original meaning of chauvinism, in its political use. Of course, jingoism works also.

    While I haven't seen any definitions that refer to a cult of personality, those tend to form around politicos and powerful people anyway. Look at the followers of The Donald and "Celebrity Apprentice," for example. Folks just don't use critical evaluations.

    My grandmother was one-- lifelong Democrat. Her hand would have withered had she voted R.  I prefer using critical thinking and evaluation.


    OK (none / 0) (#71)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:52:52 AM EST
    So the issue with your comment is that it assumes that the only way you can think Obama is doing a good job is idolatry or ignorance.  There is a third option: That people with intelligence can objectively evaluate what's happened and decide that he's doing a decent job.  Matter of fact, roughly half of the country has consistently thought that since the time he stepped into office.

    You should look up "moderates".  Because those folks have a different view of the world and those folks make up the bulk of the country.


    I was actually inferring that (5.00 / 5) (#88)
    by jeffinalabama on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:13:59 PM EST
    you are chauvinistic towards Obama. I look at his record, his deals, and his actions and make my own evaluations.

    Political Chauvinism comes in many forms. When Obama does something I consider appropriate, I acknowledge it.

    When he fails, either to reach an ideal, or to even attempt to do something, I acknowledge it.

    Obama's economic policies have failed. His domestic agenda doesn't seem to exist.

    I used to wait on some sort of coherency, but now I just wait for it to end. His policies have failed. The tax cut policies, for example, I reference downthread.


    Given the environment (none / 0) (#35)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 09:23:42 AM EST
    it might be.  This isn't an SAT test. Success has to be judged on the fact that no one wants to pay more taxes in a recession, we have a GOP House that is willing to wreck the economy to prevent any tax cuts and we have the trump car of the ability to raise taxes in 2 years when the economy is more stable anyway.

    So in a world that isn't black in white, almost certainly.  It could be a success depending on how it is structured.


    Not only do people not want to (5.00 / 4) (#41)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:21:32 AM EST
    pay higher taxes in a recession, they don't usually like to pay them even when they are swimming in economic gravy.  And, perhaps you misspoke, but the GOP is playing a game of chicken on the debt ceiling not because they want to prevent tax cuts, but because they want to prevent tax increases.

    The trump card isn't realty a trump card when, having held that same card through a majority Demcratic Congress for two years, up through the end of 2010, Obama dealt it away for an extension of unemployment - which could have been done in a separate bill - and a 2% cut in the employee payroll tax - which also could have been done in separate legislation; what do you suppose it will be dealt away for next time?  If austerity reigns and economic conditions don't improve, what are the chances the Bush rates will be allowed to expire?

    And while I have no idea what your rationale is for your declaration that the economy will be more stable in two years anyway, even if it would be, can't you see the arguments for again extending the Bush rates will be that (1) hey, we managed to pull out of this even with low rates, so why do we now need to raise them? and (2) we don't want to rock the boat, just in case raising taxes will send us backwards again?

    As for Obama pushing back on the military industrial complex by pushing cuts to that portion of the budget, I think the GOP signal that they'd be willing to go for that is a head fake: at the very last minute, if that option is on the table, it will come off or be reduced to a degree that we will be told that other cuts had to be made in order to save the republic and the global economy from meltdown.  "We had no choice" will be the slogan of the day.

    The sad truth is that if Obama had held fast on letting the Bush rates expire, we wouldn't be having these discussions about the unfairness and pain of the sacrifices millions will now end up making, because the entire argument about the debt and the deficit (which is really entirely bogus in any event) would have disappeared in a heartbeat.  A heartbeat.  

    I'm sorry, but there isn't enough magic sparkle fairy dust to make the well-being of millions of people a fair trade-off for where we are now.  That Obama couldn't hold the GOP's feet to the fire, and let them go on the record being responsible for killing the unemployment extension and payroll tax cuts, is a stunning display of cowardice, and placing his own political fortunes above all else bcause he was afraid his chances at re-election would also vanish in a heartbeat, is the very definition of "craven."


    As (none / 0) (#38)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 09:57:19 AM EST
    I said.

    I'm absolute positive that Obama will play his trump car in 2013 or 2014 and that depending how it is structured in a world that isn't black in white everything will be Ok in the future.

    On the other hand....


    At every turn (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:11:45 AM EST
    Obama has been blasted for not making the correct move on demand only to do what's right long term.  

    Second term Obama with nothing to lose and a legacy to build will be a beast for the GOP to contend with.  Especially is buoyed by the inevitable improvement in the economy with time.

    An Obama with two wrapped up wars, economy in the 6 percent unemployment range and a grateful country will be able to do big things.  That's the long game.

    When people are calling him a failure based on concessions that can be reversed in 2 years, it ignores the long haul.


    You really believe... (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by Dadler on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:44:36 AM EST
    ...that an Obama with a completely new personality, set of priorities, and genuine partisan fight is going to magically appear the day he wins a second term?  So the two books he's written, the way he's operated as a pol, the way he's operated as prez, the fundamental psyche he has possessed and acted from for his entire lifetime...these are going to be transformed in his second term?  


    I admire your optimism, but I would questions its sight.


    It (5.00 / 1) (#78)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:05:03 PM EST
    isn't optimism.

    It's a sales pitch.


    This isn't "new Obama" (none / 0) (#52)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:13:56 AM EST
    This is Obama from day 1. I voted for the guy looking at the long game.

    How long of a game? (5.00 / 2) (#91)
    by mmc9431 on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:19:01 PM EST
    Obama had the will of the people behind him. The country was disgusted with the Republican government. He had the House and the mythical 60% Senate. That was the time to act. Not as the lame duck.

    The policies we have are the policies he believes in. I don't see the new and improved, dynamic Obama surfacing if he wins again.

    Assuming he going to be different is the same as all of those that assumed he was the true "progressive" candidate. The Obama you see is the Obama you'll get. To expect anything different is just wishful thinking.

    Voters need to pin politicians down for real answers rather than vague hopes.


    Exactly (5.00 / 2) (#93)
    by Dadler on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:22:14 PM EST
    THIS isn't a new Obama, but you are trying to sell the idea that there WILL be a new Obama in his second term.

    A strategy of "I'm going to sell out hard to the right in my first term, ignore the harm I do, put on whatever act I have to to get re-elected, then when I get that second term I am going to play a completely different game and win the day," well, if you want to think that is Obama from Day 1, okay.  I see it as very clear evidence of a man much more conservative that those who elected him ever would have believed.


    Give me an example (5.00 / 2) (#54)
    by cal1942 on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:16:03 AM EST
    only to do what's right long term.

    Certainly no guarantee the economy will improve anytime soon.  Certainly no guarantee he'll be around in 2013, '14, etc.

    That 2nd term beast is only possible with both houses of Congress.  His inept performance in '09 and '10 cost us the House and a diminished Senate.

    I'll be waiting for your 'Obama's big moves are ahead' a couple of days before he's out of office.


    His inept performance did not cost us anything (1.00 / 0) (#60)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:28:06 AM EST
    the economy was in the crapper, they called HCR socialism and that spells a loss for the dems.  
    I do not think there was anything Obama or the dems could have done to avoid that.

    I think we've already seen MASSIVE moves by Obama. As I have aid plenty of times, if he did nothing else substantial this term it would still be a successful presidency from a progressive perspective.

    So no, I don't think you should wait for anything because I don't think your take is likely to be fair anyway.

    Just assume that you will dislike him in the future no matter what he does and it'll be all good.


    Its dumb statements like this: (5.00 / 2) (#72)
    by NYShooter on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:57:29 AM EST
    "Just assume that you will dislike him in the future no matter what he does and it'll be all good."

    There's not a single Obama critic here that deserves to be slurred with that lie.

    And, there's no other word for it....its a LIE.


    There is not (1.00 / 0) (#86)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:12:53 PM EST
    a single Obama supporter here who deserves to be called a cultist who is only defending Obama out of ignorance.

    Right back at ya with hot sauce.

    I see no one leaping to repel unfair characterizations when the claims are:

    1. If you view Obama positively you don't know the facts

    2. If you are a black person and still support Obama you are doing so because he's black

    3. If you are OK with a compromise position on various issues, you aren't a liberal


    So yeah.  When I hear you up in arms about the unfairness of criticisms hurled by those you agree with, I'll take those kind of statements seriously.

    Until then you are what you are: someone defending those who believe as you do while allowing those who disagree to get abused because  . . . well because they deserve it doggone it.


    Three more lies (5.00 / 1) (#92)
    by NYShooter on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:19:50 PM EST
    keep'em coming

    You know (none / 0) (#99)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:46:25 PM EST
    just saying it is a lie doesn't make it a lie.  

    There are certainly (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by lilburro on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:54:21 PM EST
    folks here who are never going to like Obama, period.  And there are certainly folks here who repel arguments that the only reason black people still like Obama is because they're black, that'd you have to be completely ignorant to like Obama, etc.  ABG, I don't think your 3rd point is slanderous, really.

    Wisdom. (none / 0) (#113)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:21:59 PM EST
    just saying it is a lie doesn't make it a lie.  


    Put that on the kitchen wall.


    Well (none / 0) (#114)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:24:14 PM EST
    I have to remind folks of that sadly.

    Somehow I think they are going to be all "ABG you LIe" and I am going to be all "oh, my. Yes. I did lie. You are so right."


    Maybe I should just start yelling "you lie!!!!!" randomly too to balance things out.  Looks like fun.


    "ABG you LIe" (none / 0) (#131)
    by NYShooter on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 02:27:29 PM EST
    Did I say that? no. You made that generalization.

    Those 3 statements, they are lies.


    If they are lies (none / 0) (#134)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:05:46 PM EST
    Why does no one call them that when the statements are made?

    Well, if it isn't ignorance, it at least (5.00 / 2) (#140)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:21:13 PM EST
    appears to be stubbornness, but I suspect you would throw that one right back at me and a few others.  That being said, your interpretation of events seems generally revisionist, and usually comes without a shred of outside support or documentation; your predictions for the future are, in turn, based on a history that simply does not exist.  It sparkles really pretty - too bad we're not really into magic fairy dust.

    Rather than get into a festival of name-calling , let's consider your list:

    1.    I think it's possible to view Obama positively because one genuinely likes and agrees with what he's done and is doing, but when Obama supporters rally behind Obama for doing many of the same things they excoriated Bush and Cheney for doing, that says to me that party and personality are trumping policy - and fact.  When Obama supporters fail to hold him accountable for the many things he said when he signed on for this job, when they fail to acknowledge the disconnect between Obama-the-Senator and Obama-the-President, they are wandering off to the Land of Denial, where facts are in short supply.

    2.    They don't call it "identity politics" just because it's a catchy little label, but because people tend to gravitate to and support politicians they identify with, whether that is a matter of gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, looks, class, education, etc.  And that's fine, but when, as above, people stand by a politician whose actions they opposed when carried out by someone of another party or other identifying characteristic, it's hard to maintain that the support is for reasons other than identity.  

    3.    One person's liberal is another person's moderate or "progressive" or conservative, and one has to look at what is being compromised, whether it moves an issue in the direction one would like to see it go, where the benefits of compromise accrue, and determine, for one's self, whether that fits with one's views.  There are some here who see any progress as making the compromises it took to get it worthwhile.  There are others who question the extent to which a particular position was ever fought for, look to see whether the compromise was made in advance of actual negotiations, consider the stakes and conclude that a particular issue was not approached from a liberal perspective - and seeing this happen again and again and again, has led to the inevitable further conclusion that the person behind much of it - Obama - does not fit their definition of liberal.  By all means continue to view Obama as a liberal; know that for as long as you do that, you will meet resistance accompanied by many examples of why that resistance is justified.

    No one is saying you can't or you shouldn't support any politician of your choosing, for whatever your reasons, but would I characterize the response you get to your opinions as "abuse?"  No.  If anything, I think people have been remarkably restrained, have exhibited far more patience than you will find almost anywhere else - where you surely would have been told to f___ off in very short order - have bent over backwards to provide you with reams of links and sources for your edification, and continued to engage you even though it is sometimes beyond frustrating to do so.  

    Abusive?  No.  Painful?  Sometimes.  Worth it?  You tell me.


    Anne (none / 0) (#147)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 04:49:28 PM EST
    I appreciate the fact that you provided a lengthy response, but my perspective is different.

    People get upset when I say that anti-Obamaism (be it because some still haven't gotten over the primaries or because they are on the further fringes of the left) is behind some of the comments, but they have no problem with saying that those who defend Obama are ignorant or stubborn or whatever other words you would use other than "just disagreeing".

    You do not seem to acknowledge the idea that knowledgable people can look at the same set of facts, have the same general understanding of the past and present dynamics and com to completely different conclusions.  In your mind, if you aren't a liberal angry at Obama, you either don't know what you are talking about, are brainwashed or are ignoring "reality" for reasons of race or class or whatever.

    That sucks.

    To your points:

    1. I can only speak for myself and I pound Obama for the same things a pounded Bush for: the wars and the patriot act stuff. I disagree with him on all of that. Vehemently. But I think the good he brings and the promises he's kept far outweigh the things that he disappoints on.  Can you accept that that is a legitimate position? You can't seem to.

    2. I do identify with Obama. No question. That's part of the reason that I, as a black lawyer of a very similar background, see the inherent biases heaped upon him. My connection to him gives me more perspective, not less perspective in many ways.

    To put it bluntly, I understand first hand what it is like to have people ignore your positives to focus only on your negatives in ways that they would not others.  Obama is reversing policies that Bill Clinton (and Hillary if she was as active as she said she was) instituted but you'd think that it was the other way around.  I identify with that unfairness.  I'd also have identified with it if hillary had won. There is a subtle double standard that even the most liberal of us fall into without knowing it.  Not all or even most of the criticism is related to those issues.  But a part of it is, and if the TL community thinks it is immune, they aren't looking in the mirror hard enough.  It is there.

    3. I disagree with all of this because it ignores the question of what is possible and the fact that people can differ on that question.

    I am liberal as you can possibly be on drug laws, but if I were President, I wouldn't push legalization of cocaine, for example, at all. Why? Not because I don't believe it should be legal.  I do.  But because it will never succeed, the downside of pushing for it is great and the benefits are not adequate to justify the fight.

    You discount the possibility that Obama simply sees a different field of possibilities and negative impacts than you do. Everything we hear from inside the admin indicates that that is what's happening.  You ignore all of that counter evidence to claim he's a conservative based only on the most simplistic of factors. Your way is easier, but not necessarily more correct.

    I can take "abuse".  I am a big boy some throw everything you have at me. Just don't claim to be insulted when I use the same tactics against you.

    I ammo more "abusive" than anyone else.  If I can avoid being "insulted" with all the crap I get, I am not going to take anyone else's calls of "abuse" seriously if I think I was giving them a dose of their own medicine.

    I know the rules and I play that game. You should too and I will be just as hard nosed with you as you are with me, shake hands at the end and go about my day appreciating the debate.

    I am not here to have people agree with everything I say.  I am here to learn, vent and engage.


    You (none / 0) (#95)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:26:22 PM EST
    are the one casting insults.

    If you like Obama - think he will do even better in the future - I wish you well.

    But what you are offering in defense of your position is gibberish.


    The attacks on him (none / 0) (#115)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:25:46 PM EST
    here  today are gibberish.

    There are plenty of good criticisms to be made about Obama.

    It's just that people aren't making them.  They are going with ridiculous hyperbole and it's easy to dismiss.

    It's like looking at a Tea Party photo-negative.

    It's the same lunacy just completely reversed.


    Counterargument: (none / 0) (#116)
    by jeffinalabama on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:27:19 PM EST
    the defenses of him here today border on gibberish.

    Right back at ya (none / 0) (#118)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:34:20 PM EST
    Your stuff is gibberish.

    This is not a fun ganme


    No need to go (none / 0) (#120)
    by jeffinalabama on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:36:22 PM EST
    ad hominem any more than you have. Come up with an actual defense of what has happened. Or just answer my post below on how not addressing jobs is such a good move.

    The ball is in your court. Stop hitting road apples.


    These so-called attacks are directed (none / 0) (#125)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:51:47 PM EST
    at policy and strategy and the effectiveness - or not - of both.

    There are some criticisms that could be taken as personal, but since no one here that I'm aware of actually knows Obama-the-person, whatever spillover there seems to be is more incidental than intentional.  I'm not invested in Obama-the-man - all that concerns me is Obama-the-president: I don't love him or see him as the Second Coming, or believe he has transcendent and other-worldly qualities.  I also don't hate him, because I don't know him.  I can hate, object to, be angry about, dispute, and disagree with his policies and his actions and have opinions about his leadership qualities.

    So, when I say that I feel that Obama's Deal was cowardly and craven, I'm not directing that at him, personally, but at his actions as president.

    If there is gibberish here, it is in these fantasy predictions you keep making to counter what is actually happening right now, on the front lines of life in America: unemployment will be in the 5's by 2016, Obama will end at least two wars, affordable health care for all, putting the DOD in its place - pretty much, it's about Obama emerging from the political phonebooth as the hero who will finally save the day, and so on.

    That's lunacy.  That's living in a fantasy world.  That's an open invitation to getting your heart broken - which explains why you defend him so vigorously, I think.

    I'm sorry you can't deal with reality, but I don't think being angry at people who are trying to deal with it makes much sense.


    Ugh. (none / 0) (#112)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:20:23 PM EST
    Hot sauce?

    Who on this blog has said that black people who cling to Obama are doing so because he's black?

    And if some black people are, so what?

    It happens.
    It's human enough.

    But your veiled assertion is racist, mean-spirited and McCarthyite.


    Ga6thDem said it (none / 0) (#117)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:31:46 PM EST
    That's who.

    I suspect you thought I wouldn't have an answer for that challenge.

    And the racist part what where Ga6thDem told us all that the only reason black people supported Obama today was because they were black and if they actually understood the facts they wouldn't.

    Because we are all gullible idiots like that.

    But what I said was racist?


    Anyway, I am done.  I am going to defend Obama against overbroad attacks.  Sorry.


    I said (none / 0) (#121)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:41:55 PM EST
    no such thing. I said that African Americans have suffered more under Obama than any other voting bloc out there so why do they still support him and then I repeated the assertion that Glenn Ford had made and expounded on that.

    1 in 3 African American males are unemployed. Do you think that's a good thing? A calling me names doesn't change the facts.


    Compromise? (none / 0) (#142)
    by cal1942 on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:41:49 PM EST
    The DEAL.  Hardly a purely liberal position and for that matter an unnecessary 'compromise.'

    His lack of leadership, the unwillingness to use the bully pulpit in the debt ceiling matter is hardly a liberal purity question.

    If you're telling us that practical, good sense policies are purely liberal I'll tell you that "moderates" are also unhappy with matters such as the DEAL.

    You remind me of the Gannett foreign affairs reporter who pinned the isolationist label on anyone who questions US involvement in Libya.


    The Deal compromise (none / 0) (#149)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 04:53:23 PM EST
    was not unnecessary IMHO.

    I don't know where to go from there on that point.  I just completely disagree.


    And (none / 0) (#75)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:00:07 PM EST
    by the way...

    The public option is right around the corner...


    Can we let ACA take effect (none / 0) (#81)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:07:17 PM EST
    before arguing that the long term effects that people argued could happen years down the road aren't going to happen.

    Which "long term" are you referring to? (5.00 / 3) (#90)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:18:48 PM EST
    The long term of the now-three years until the ACA is fully implemented, or the long term beyond that 2014 start date?

    Seems like, if health and health care were the priority, and with the entire system in crisis, and, with the economy in the tank, more people than ever losing coverage or struggling to pay premiums or pay for care out-of-pocket - or doing without - a reform plan that didn't go into full effect for four more years wouldn't seem to be the way to go.

    Nothing like designing a plan that people won't really be able to evaluate until looooong after those responsible have left office; in the meantime, for a lot of people, I guess a first-aid kit from the local Walgreen's will be their health care plan for the forseeable future.


    2014 (none / 0) (#103)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:58:04 PM EST
    It was a massive change and it will take years to put into place.  If he could have implemented it immediately, I am sure he would have.

    One word, ABG: Medicare (5.00 / 4) (#111)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:17:59 PM EST
    A massive program that, back in the day of slower and more cumbersome technology, had all eligible seniors enrolled within one year.

    One year.

    This country can and does act with lightning speed when it has to - well, we do war really, really well - but I guess you're telling us that there was no urgency about this, which makes the constant use of the word "crisis" seem more than a little dishonest, don't you think?  I guess this explains why we have a housing "crisis" we can't or won't do anything about, an energy "crisis" that no one is addressing, had a financial "crisis" that helped the people who caused it more than the people affected by it, have an education "crisis" that never gets better, and - oh, yeah - a jobs "crisis" that those with the ability to address seem decidedly cavalier about and generally indifferent to.  They have jobs, so what do they care if we don't?

    Maybe someone changed the definition of "crisis" while I wasn't looking; seems like the best way to make sure nothing of consequence happens, and no special interests are negatively affected, is to declare something to be in "crisis."

    Anyone know if calling "911" still brings emergency responders quickly, or does that call now get routed through all the circles of hell before being disconnected?


    Anne (none / 0) (#126)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:57:29 PM EST
    Were states suing the federal government over medicare? Were states refusing to take money. Etc.



    He's not inept. (none / 0) (#94)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:23:57 PM EST
    He's a republican conservative.
    His attorney general just finished lobbying the congress for an extension of the loathsome patriot act - A Bush-boil on the American countenance.
    He said we need it "more than ever".

    He has gotten what he wanted.

    You like it.
    You want more.
    You've seen MASSIVE moves.

    Go for it.


    Unemployment: (none / 0) (#119)
    by jeffinalabama on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:34:24 PM EST
    Initial claims applications have remained persistently high, staying above 400,000 for the past 11 weeks, a level higher than what economists say reflects a healthy and improving job market.


    So... flat or increasing unemployment is supposed to be a good thing? Where.Is.The.Policy?


    Answer for Jeff (none / 0) (#136)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:09:33 PM EST
    1. I don't believe that the blip up is a long term trend.

    2. So long as the trend for the 16 months is downward, it'll be fine.

    3. It is possible that Greece, oil prices and other factors force unemployment up regardless.

    Clearest counter (for the 100th time): unemployment is up in other countries as with ours. There is no policy being taken here or elsewhere that would have negated the economic slowdown of the last 3 months.

    It was global.


    Thanks for answering. (none / 0) (#138)
    by jeffinalabama on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:14:29 PM EST
    11 weeks isn't a blip.

    Oil prices have been declining for 5 weeks now.

    Greece? I don't see Greece as having any effect on the unaddressed structural issues in the US economy.

    France and Germany face some consequences, but even at that, when looking at the total debt for Greece, it's fairly small potatoes considering the eurozone. Now the privatization demanded by Merkel and others, that's where the issue comes in, not the total amount of debt that the Greeks want to restructure.


    Are you sure (none / 0) (#141)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:41:28 PM EST
    you're not Bush Sr. in disguise? You are making all the same arguments that Bush Sr. made in '92 as to why people should vote for him. I remember when asked about the recession back then Bush's answer was "we're in a global recession". NOBODY wants to hear that now anymore than they did back then. It's cold and unfeeling and out of touch to say the least. Nobody cares about a "global recession". They only care that they can't buy food or provide shelter.

    Perhaps you should study "Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs" to kind of get what's going on the psyche of the average american today.

    Here's a link link

    Millions of Americans are at the safety and physiological level these days when you are approaching everything from what seems to be the esteem level. Millions of Americans can't even think to that level right now because they're worried about having a job, a house etc.


    I'll give you an example... (none / 0) (#77)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:04:13 PM EST
    As soon as the insurance care bill was signed, immediate and intense negotiations began to include a public option. Just as predicted...


    It wasn't?



    Who said that was going to happen (none / 0) (#82)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:07:40 PM EST
    no one I know.

    Absolutely (none / 0) (#87)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:12:56 PM EST

    That's what flipped Kucinich - that kind of bs assurance after he met with O. on a plane ride.


    I'll call that bluff (none / 0) (#105)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:02:51 PM EST
    source please.

    Google (5.00 / 1) (#110)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:17:07 PM EST
    it if you care.

    You could just (none / 0) (#137)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:10:56 PM EST
    say that you don't have it and we can move on.  If Imake a statement and am asked to support it and people I "google" I'd get killed.

    Okay. (none / 0) (#42)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:25:52 AM EST
    I'm glad that you're in on Obama's "secret plan" to somehow accomplish something in his second term that he was unable to in his first.

    Where "secret plan" (none / 0) (#45)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:49:55 AM EST
    = "stuff discussed by pundits almost every day".

    Who knows what he'll do man, but you can't claim to know that Obama will cave on everything forever into the future and then point fingers about others making guesses about what will happen.


    And apparently, the kinds of noises you (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:59:33 AM EST
    complain about here are also being made on Capitol Hill:

    House Democrats' frustration with Obama is boiling in the intense heat of negotiations to reach a budget deal and raise the nation's $14.3 trillion debt ceiling.

    Capitol Hill Democrats have been steaming for months, since being sidelined during talks to extend the George W. Bush-era tax rates and fund the government this year. Many say the White House takes their support for granted but ignores them when it comes to making policy.

    "Before this year we were playing a strong role," said Cuellar, but "now a lot of us feel like we're almost being ignored."

    A fellow Democrat, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said Capitol Hill Democrats called months ago for oil to be released from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to lower gasoline prices, but the president waited until last week to do it.

    The lawmaker called the White House "obtuse" and added, "I'm disappointed in their politics."
    The frustration "seems to be growing" with "senior members of the caucus ... shaking their heads," the lawmaker said.

    And those meetings Obama had - separately - with Democratic and Republican leadership?

    Partly to temper mounting discontent, Obama called House Democrats to the White House on June 2, a day after meeting with House Republicans, to hear their concerns about the debt negotiations.

    It was a tense encounter, according to several accounts.

    One Democrat who was there said Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) bluntly asked Obama whether he was willing to fight for Democratic priorities amid GOP calls for trillions of dollars in spending cuts.

    In asking the question, Waxman said he'd asked several Republicans about their White House meeting the day before and had been concerned by their response.

    "To a person, they said the president's going to cave," Waxman told Obama, according to his colleague's account.
    "If you're not going to cave, eliminating that misunderstanding is very, very important to the negotiations," the lawmaker said, retelling Waxman's message. "And if you're going to cave, tell us right now."

    Obama, however, "didn't answer the question," the Democrat added. "Obama got in a huff, and he said, `I'm the president of the United States, my words carry weight' -- which is not the answer," the lawmaker said. "That's not what anyone challenges. It's whether he is doing this negotiation in the right way."

    Who needs them, though, right?


    It's not surprising (none / 0) (#50)
    by lilburro on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:05:24 AM EST
    the House Dems are no longer major policy players (although I wish they were not excluded from talks to the degree that they are).  They are the minority now after all.

    My two cents, I have no idea how the budget talks are going to end.  I think deep defense spending cuts are unlikely to happen for the same reason Atrios does, the GOP will attack Dems for "not supporting the troops" in 10 seconds.  

    It almost sounds like they have to completely restart the talks.  But I dunno.


    What exactly (none / 0) (#63)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:31:45 AM EST
    are House Dems supposed to be doing?  

    You're (5.00 / 2) (#80)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:06:46 PM EST
    the one saying that Obama has a secret plan...

    to be revealed sometime in the future (what you call the long haul).

    Sorry - but it is to laugh.


    I think that plan is obvious to anyone (none / 0) (#106)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:07:17 PM EST
    including the GOP bloggers talking about it.

    But Obama can't come out and say that obviously.


    So the fact that you're on the same ... (5.00 / 1) (#156)
    by Yman on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:27:43 PM EST
    ... page with some winger bloggers when it comes to dreaming up WORM "plans" is supposed to make them more credible?

    Should we really list a couple of dozen seriously crazy "secret plans" the wingers are talking about on their blogs?  Are they all "obvious", or only the "good" ones?


    All (5.00 / 0) (#85)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:12:10 PM EST
    we can go on is what Obama history's has been and it has been a history of Reaganite economics and voting present. So to expect him to be anything different with a second term is wishful thinking.

    Unless things change a lot over the next 17 months or the GOP implodes, Obama is not going to be reelected.

    I know it's not something that you want to hear but that's what the numbers are saying right now.


    Oh yeah. (none / 0) (#74)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:59:29 AM EST
    When people are calling him a failure based on concessions that can be reversed in 2 years, it ignores the long haul.

    This is just nutty - making that kind of pie in the sky argument - that the person who has sold you out intends to unsell you out in a couple of years if you only would vote for him again.

    Would you buy a car from someone who sold you a lemon if they promised that the next car would be better? If so, call 800 - 555 1678 and ask for Murray.


    Well (none / 0) (#108)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:09:12 PM EST
    I don't think he sold us out.

    Rod Blagojevich guilty on 17 of 20 counts (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by Peter G on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 09:34:57 PM EST
    How do I know what to think without Jeralyn's analysis?  Help!

    For this site, that's got to be (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by andgarden on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 10:05:06 PM EST
    a reference buried in a reference!

    I think the best moment (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by andgarden on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 10:37:13 PM EST
    has to be when Nicholson's character explains that he likes his nose.

    The gangster with the knife (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by KeysDan on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:08:19 AM EST
    who cuts his nose was played by Roman Polanski. Sort of his stealth cameo, like Alfred Hitchcock's appearances in his movies.

    Can the jury really have stayed out deliberating (none / 0) (#66)
    by Peter G on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:38:23 AM EST
    for ten days just to try to resolve the two particular counts on which they hung, after agreeing on 18 others (17 G, 1 NG)?

    In place of the late local news (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by andgarden on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 10:08:47 PM EST
    I am watching a rerun of Japanese Iron Chef on the cooking channel.

    Far more relaxing.

    I tell ya... (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by kdog on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 09:01:18 AM EST
    I like this "Anonymous" outfit more and more everyday...begun Operation Orlando has.

    Orlando apparently has a problem with feeding the hungry, and are using chains and cages to fight what the crackhead mayor calls "food terrorists"...seriously, food terrorists.

    Give 'em hell Anonymous...keep up the good work f*cking with the computers of the adversaries of  humanity and decency.


    Interesting development (none / 0) (#70)
    by ruffian on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:49:50 AM EST
    The whole thing is so stupid. Glad to see the city get worldwide egg on its face. Let the people get fed already. No one is getting hurt.

    I remember a stink... (5.00 / 2) (#107)
    by kdog on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:09:00 PM EST
    in Vegas awhile back, same sorry story...can't feed the homeless in the park, it might make them full bellies uncomfortable.

    Things are tough all over...everytime it gets cold the NYPD herds the homeless out of the subway stations so as not to make the elites uncomfortable.

    And I'm sure we'll be hearing of more and more heartless anti-homeless policies as the economy remains stagnant and sh*tty.  


    In NC (5.00 / 5) (#34)
    by lilburro on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 09:22:23 AM EST
    where I currently live, Governor Perdue stands with Planned Parenthood and vetoes a bill on abortion restrictions.  Excellent.

    Dodgers Illustrate Contrast (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by cal1942 on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:53:41 AM EST
    A microcosm of the way it was and the way it is.

    The O'Malley's ran the Dodgers like American businesses were once run.  Invest in the team, produce a good product.  

    Now these jackasses ran the Dodgers like 'modern' American business.  Strip as much as possible from the business to enrich the people at the top and to hell with the product.

    Nice observation cal... (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by kdog on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:07:14 AM EST
    maybe worth mentioning that too much power in the hands of a central planner can drive a good American business out of town.

    O'Malley gets the brunt of blame for the move outta Brooklyn...people forget it was the all-powerful Robert Moses who would not compromise on a stadium site, forcing O'Malley's hand.


    Speaking of (none / 0) (#67)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:39:57 AM EST
    Robert Moses...

    For a seemingly interminable stretch of time, one would be attempting to drive along either the grand central parkway or the L.I. expressway - I forget which - and while your car was boiling over you would see signs overhead which proclaimed that you couldn't make an omelette without breaking eggs.

    And we were the eggs.

    We still are.


    The secret history of New York (none / 0) (#69)
    by jeffinalabama on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:44:02 AM EST
    Moses was singularly responsible for creating the South Bronx as a desolation zone. He was singularly responsible for the Dodgers move.

    He wanted to build a stadium somewhere in Queens... Seems like he got his wish.

    O'Malley was going to privately finance a stadium IIRC, but couldn't get permits.

    Moses... incredible history, big accomplishments. Goes to show that not all accomplishments are good ones.


    Yep, he pushed O'Malley out (none / 0) (#89)
    by Dadler on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:15:48 PM EST
    For his own vision of a freeway future.  

    Moses was a man for whom neighborhood, I think, was a curse word.  He didn't so much predict an inevitable future as create an awful one.


    Sad state of affairs (5.00 / 1) (#96)
    by mmc9431 on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:27:14 PM EST
    As a life long Dodger fan, this makes me sick. The only reason McCourt is hanging on now is to get his hands on the Fox money. Once he would have that, he'd be more than happy to walk away.

    I hope MLB can stop him from mortgaging the future of the team for the next 20 years or so.

    I cringed when the O'Malley's sold the team to Fox because they're bad enough. (I still think they traded Piazza to the Marlin's so they could get the TV rights!) But McCourt is even worse.


    US Women's soccer leading N. Korea 1-0 (5.00 / 2) (#98)
    by Dadler on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:38:32 PM EST
    In the opening round of the Women's World Cup, just about to his the 65th minute.  On ESPN.  

    another score, 2-0 now (5.00 / 1) (#100)
    by Dadler on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:50:47 PM EST
    approaching the 80th minute.  looking good.

    Well, I'm depressed, on a personal level (5.00 / 1) (#104)
    by Zorba on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:02:26 PM EST
    A very dear friend has been diagnosed with Primary Progressive Aphasia.  So far, it has only impacted her math and spelling skills, and it may stay that way for years, but eventually, it will get worse.  She's a very special, very vibrant lady, and I just wish that there was something I could do.  I have offered to work with her on these skills, if she wants (I have had more than a little training and experience working with brain-injured people), but I also realize that this is disease will progress, no matter what.

    It may be in fits and starts... (5.00 / 1) (#109)
    by jeffinalabama on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:10:14 PM EST
    I am sorry for your friend. does she have access to public transportation? She should be able to get the discounted rates with PPA.

    We share working with brain-injured folks... sometimes it's spooning water with a fork, but there are intrinsic rewards.


    She lives (5.00 / 1) (#122)
    by Zorba on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:45:38 PM EST
    pretty far out, same as us, but on the other side of the county, so no public transportation.  So far, she is more than capable of driving herself, and her husband is getting close to retirement, so he will be available long before it gets to the point where she cannot drive herself.  Unfortunately, this county has very limited para-transit available, and that mainly for medical appointments.  She will have great support from her husband and their children, though, which is a blessing not available to all in this situation.  I will just hate to see the candle of her.....I don't know what to call it- her mind, her very "selfness," I guess, flicker and diminish.  We have gone through this before with another friend, with Alzheimer's.  That friend is still alive, but in a nursing home and doesn't recognize anyone except her husband (and him only on occasion).  Some years ago we went through this with Mr. Z's mother, who was living with us at the end of her life.  There were days when we could have a perfectly rational and complicated, thoughtful discussion with her, and then other days when she thought that her son was her brother.  Absolutely heart-breaking- she was a brilliant woman with a doctorate who had done amazing medical research, and was well-read and well-informed about a variety of topics.  Sometimes I wonder if all our vaunted medical advances are doing us a favor by extending our lives, at the expense of our minds and that which makes us "ourselves."  Sorry for the downer.  I just am not looking forward to going through this again, with another loved one.  

    Zorba, I think what some people don't (5.00 / 3) (#127)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 02:05:02 PM EST
    completely appreciate about the tragedy of something like PPA or Alzheimer's or any form of dementia, is that in addition to losing the person you love and know, it's also about watching yourself slowly disappear from the affected person's mind and memory.

    I feel this with my aunt, who has advanced Alzheimer's; I am no longer her only niece who would visit in the summers growing up, whom she took for ice cream and shrimp salad sandwiches, who loved the cool art projects she'd come up with to entertain me, who loved my sense of humor as I got older, who would listen raptly to stories about my father when he was a boy, whom she would let bake and cook when I was short enough that I needed a stool to reach the counters.  I am now the nice lady who comes to see her, and even then, I'm the nice lady who disappears from her mind as soon as I am out of sight.

    It was when I realized that I was only just "the nice lady" that I realized that I wasn't just losing her, I was losing the me that lived in her mind and memory.

    I'll be thinking of you and your friend, and hoping you both have each other - in the best possible way - for a long, long time.


    Yes, there is that (5.00 / 1) (#135)
    by Zorba on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:09:16 PM EST
    It is a loss and a tragedy, all the way around.  For those of us who are lost from the memories of those we love, as well as for those loved ones who suffer from dementia, in whatever form.

    The worst part, what genuinely (5.00 / 1) (#143)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:53:50 PM EST
    horrifies me, is being in that place where you know you're losing it, little by little, and every day is a question - did I forget something, am I supposed to be somewhere and I forgot, what if I forget who I am; as hard as it would be on my family, I often think that, if that were to happen to me, I'd almost want it to be as quick a trip as possible to the land of not-knowing.  I don't know - maybe the blessings of the memory we still have counters the fear of what is happening to us; I just know that I wouldn't wish this on my worst enemy.

    You are a good friend, kind and compassionate, and my heart aches for you both.


    Thank you, Anne (none / 0) (#145)
    by Zorba on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 04:26:37 PM EST
    And I agree about the horror.  In her more lucid moments, my MIL asked us to kill her.  Of course, we could not do that- her son, my husband, could never have brought himself to the point of killing his mother, and there were the legal ramifications to consider, as well (we had children still dependent on us).  But I understood, and my heart broke for her.  While I generally believe that suicide is devastating for those left behind and is therefore in many cases a selfish act, I'm not so sure that, if such a thing happens to me, I might not plan and execute my suicide, before it got to the point that I could no longer do it physically, or mentally.  I don't know.  I also must consider the case of former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor's husband who apparently found love and happiness in his dementia, at the nursing home where he was being cared for.  I admire O'Connor because she had no problem with this, and was reportedly happy that he had found happiness, even though he did not remember her or their marriage.  Would that we could all be so gracious in similar circumstances.  So I really don't know.  When the dementia gets bad enough that you remember nothing of your former life, then obviously, that is much harder on your loved ones than it is on you.  But it is the gradual slide, and the awareness of that slide, that horrifies me.

    So sorry (none / 0) (#144)
    by Nemi on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 04:03:00 PM EST
    And while I believe it must be utterly rewarding to work with and being able to help people suffering from aphasia, PPA on the other hand - it's just disheartening. And cruel. Can't imagine, and don't want to try either, what it's like to be aware, as I guess she must be, of ones own mind and intellect perish, bit by bit.

    I agree on how heartbreaking it is to watch someone slide into dementia or Alzheimer's. Also, on top of that, the difficulties their spouses often have to deal with to explain to outsiders why they can't themselves take care of their loved one, but have to have them institutionalized. Because others maybe only see the still normal periods. There really is no way to explain.

    I'm sure you've already 'been' here aphasia.org.


    Oh, yes (5.00 / 1) (#146)
    by Zorba on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 04:33:08 PM EST
    I'm aware of that resource.  I have kept up with the field, even though I'm retired.  And you're right- PPA and other types of dementia are very different from someone born brain-injured and aphasic, or who suffers an accident or a stroke.  The damage is there, but it (usually) is not going to get any worse, and other pathways can be trained to take over for the damaged ones, especially if you are (relatively speaking) younger.  We will support and help our friend, and her family, in every way we can, and love her.  That's about all we can do.

    I'm sorry (5.00 / 2) (#123)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 01:46:00 PM EST
    to hear that Zorba.

    So sorry about that Zorba (5.00 / 2) (#128)
    by ruffian on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 02:05:46 PM EST
    I'm sure you will figure out ways to help her as time goes on, but it must be very hard on her. Good reminder for all of us to appreciate what we have.

    We wish there was more we can do... (5.00 / 2) (#130)
    by kdog on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 02:26:35 PM EST
    when illness and disease strike, but there is something you can do, and I don't doubt for a second you will do it...and that something is just being there to do what you can.

    We all get by with the help of our friends...and your friend is lucky to have ya, as are we.  


    Oh Zorba (5.00 / 0) (#148)
    by sj on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 04:49:37 PM EST
    I'm so very sorry.

    Losing it-- (5.00 / 4) (#152)
    by the capstan on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 06:43:05 PM EST
    As the mother of a woman who is 54 and has Down's Syndrome, I come at this situation from a slightly different angle.  I recently read that either she has Alzheimer's right now, or she inevitably will as she ages.

    I have had experience caring for a mother, a MIL, and an aunt with different types of dementia, as well as for a person with brain damage due to a stroke.

    I see that family members and friends would be sad as they disappear from the mental and emotional life of someone they love.

    But I see also my daughter.  I know that she may forget me, but she can still enjoy a dish of ice cream, she can still respond to a hug and a smile, she still gets in a snit when someone 'bosses' her. She holds my love in her hand and my eyes still see her value to me.

    Justice O'Conner made the journey with her husband; he suffered a 'sea change,' of great importance.  But she was concentrated on his value as a being who lived and breathed and found something to enjoy even without her.  I have learned to see my daughter: she had few intellectual skills to start with and maybe she has fewer now or will have fewer soon.  But while I can still hold her hand, still kiss her forehead, I still see the essential person that I have always loved.  


    Having worked with (5.00 / 2) (#153)
    by Zorba on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 07:01:34 PM EST
    such a population, I absolutely agree.  And I also appreciate the grace with which Justice O'Connor dealt with her husband, as I stated above.  The thing that does sadden me, though, is when the individual is aware of what is slowly going on, and aware of what they are losing.  My former students were happy, their parents loved them, we loved them, and they experienced joy and love, in so very many ways.  There were, however, a few students who had suffered some type of accident or illness later in life, became brain-injured and disabled in various ways, but could remember what they were like and what they could do before, and mourned that loss.  That was harder to deal with, for them, and for their families.

    To: the capstan (none / 0) (#161)
    by christinep on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 04:47:23 PM EST
    To be blessed with the love with which you are blessed, and to sanctify with the love you are giving.... Your moving words made forget for an instant about breathing. Your testimony is the most powerful statement that I have encountered on this blog.  Thank you very much.

    Thank you! (none / 0) (#162)
    by the capstan on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 05:25:38 PM EST
    My daughter is a gift who blesses me beyond all that words can convey. She brings smiles to all who know her (unless they tell her she can't have her ice cream or coffee). Her "love will live in my heart...."

    I grew up an L.A. Dodger fan (none / 0) (#2)
    by Dadler on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 06:26:35 PM EST
    A fanatic really.  Went to my first game in '74, remember Mike Marshall coming in late in relief to secure the win.  Mike Marshall had more appearances that year than Liberace.  I believe his arm fell off shortly after the conclusion of the season.

    The two losses to the Yankees in the World Series in '77 and '78 ripped my little kid heart out, at a time in my life when I had nothing else to cheer about.  

    In 1981, as a H.S. sophomore, I kid you not, I sat in the office of the principal of my private school as he placed bets with his bookie, then saw them pay off with a Rick Monday homer in Montreal to seal the National League pennant, en route to a long awaited WS title.  

    I remember Jim Gilliam as our first base coach one day, then stopping for a moment of silence before one of those Yankee series games to honor his memory.  A great one gone too young.  Same with Munson on the Yanks.  Way too young.  Flash.  Gone.

    Mickey Rivers threw us a ball, when I got lucky enough to go to a World Series game at Chavez Ravine, sitting in the outfield bleachers directly behind the USC marching band.  

    The O'Malleys were the only owners I knew. As soon as Fox took hold of them, I was gone.  I even made off with a piece of the stadium, the back plank of a bleacher seat, complete with a seat number, courtesy of a hyper kid who fell over the row in front of him and dislodged the seat back.  It was Mormon Family Night, as I recall, and he was getting his secular money's worth.  Bam!  I tucked the seat-back under my sweatshirt and got it out of the stadium.  It's still in my garage somewhere.  I glued to it a ticket from the game in 1988 when Orel Hershisher set the record for consecutive scoreless innings.  I was there in San Diego that night.  The late Don Drysdale was like a giant in a Members Only jacket, hugging/dwarfing Bulldog after having his record broken.

    I have, um, a little history with the Dodgers.  As a theatre student in my university days, I even did a special thesis project, a one man show about a guy locked in his apartment and obssessing over life and the Dodgers and Fernando.  It was called A DODGER BRUISE.

    Kirk Gibson's homer off Eck in game one of the '88 series, the last true Roy Hobbs moment in the majors, was my swan song as a Dodger fan.  Hershiser's crazy mound run coincided with it.  And they haven't won a playoff series since that year, I think.  Tommy Lasorda went on Slim Fast and everything went to sh*t.  Come back, fat Tommy!

    "Whatd'you mean what is my opinion of Kingman's performance?  He hit three f*cking home runs against us."

    And now I don't care that they're bankrupt.  I became a free-agent fan long ago, as mentioned.  Just can't be a Giant fan.  Though, I will say, the fact that they play in the only privately financed stadium in the league, or at least the first one since the early 1960s, really is a big point in their favor.  Dodger Stadium, by the way, was the one which was the last privately financed, though one has to take into account the work done by police in forcefully removing residents of Chavez Ravine and killing a community to build their palace to hardball.  So who knows, give it time, I may be wearing Giant orange and black before you know it.

    End freewrite inspired by Dodger bankruptcy prompt.  Peace y'all.

    Dem bums. I never got over them (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by oldpro on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:44:14 AM EST
    leaving Brooklyn.

    Los Angeles?  Faggedaboudit.


    I was born in October 1957 in Brooklyn-- (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by honora on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 09:41:22 AM EST
    I always blamed myself for their departure.

    So..... (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by NYShooter on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:23:28 AM EST
    it was YOU!!!

    It is extremely difficult for a Padres fan (none / 0) (#3)
    by oculus on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 06:30:09 PM EST
    to feel sorrow re the Dodgers.  

    That I even became a Padre fan... (none / 0) (#4)
    by Dadler on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 06:32:52 PM EST
    ...still amazes me.  Rupert Murdoch is a powerful force.

    of one of those displaced Chavez Ravine-ites. The dad was an Italian immigrant who had built up a dairy in the ravine.

    He gladly took that baseball money and bought most of what is now the town of Reseda in the SF Valley, and moved his dairy there.

    His sons came back from the WWII, looked around at what was happening, and started developing the dairy into commercial and industrial buildings, many of which they still own.

    For them, anyway, the baseball stadium was a huge benefit...


    Documentary "Hot Coffee" on HBO (none / 0) (#12)
    by brodie on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 09:46:58 PM EST
    tonight.  The famous McDonald's case.

    Surprised no one on this legal blog has mentioned this so far.

    9 pm PT.

    What really angered her (5.00 / 3) (#19)
    by NYShooter on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 11:44:57 PM EST
    was that there had been several hundred similar prior cases that were "settled" with "non-disclosure" agreements. She wanted to put a stop to the practice, not win a ton of money. She was offered boatloads of money, but McD.insisted on maintaining the scalding coffee routine. That's why she sued. (and, of course, her medical bills)

    The woman was a true hero.


    Yes. (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 07:50:23 AM EST
    You are certainly right:

    They would prefer to wallow in their purposeful misconception that the McDonald's coffee case is a prime example of a civil jury run amock...

    All you need, apparently, is a good ad agency to change the narrative.

    Tylenol managed to tie their name to "trust" and "hospitals" within days - or so it seemed.

    And, if I may digress, think of how they tied the Obama brand to "rock star", and compared (favorably) some of his stump speeches to the Gettysburg address.


    Casey Anthony's Lawyers Call For Mistrial, (none / 0) (#18)
    by 1980Ford on Mon Jun 27, 2011 at 10:55:46 PM EST
    More on Gunwalker (none / 0) (#24)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 06:47:45 AM EST
    Interesting NYT piece (none / 0) (#29)
    by lilburro on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 08:17:17 AM EST
    on the same-sex marriage vote in NY and the impact on immigrants, gay and straight:  For Many Immigrants, Marriage Vote Resonates.  Although it doesn't really sound like the two movements are concretely linked in many ways.

    One month in... (none / 0) (#32)
    by kdog on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 09:12:45 AM EST
    to the absolute joke of the NYC great outdoors smoking ban, how many tickets have been written?

    Survey says...One. And only because the smoker insisted.

    I wonder how much it cost to pass the law, print the signs, educate the public who hade no intention of ever obeying this nonsense.  Heckuva job Bloomy.

    On the MA health reforms (none / 0) (#33)
    by lilburro on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 09:18:14 AM EST
    the Boston Globe is running a 5 part series analyzing MA's healthcare law.  Here is part one (on Romney) here is part two ("a revolution that basically worked").  All via Thinkprogress which sums up some of the stats for part two.  Also at Thinkprogress, it should surprise few that Huntsman supported something similar to Romneycare for Utah.

    Sister's beau on the B.E.T. Awards last Sunday (none / 0) (#44)
    by Dadler on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:47:52 AM EST
    Nice one... (none / 0) (#48)
    by kdog on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:57:14 AM EST
    I'd imagine Lil Dadler the Horn Player got a kick out of that...and will helpo to keep him practicing.

    Huge help (none / 0) (#55)
    by Dadler on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:16:36 AM EST
    Sonny boy's the one who wants them to get hitched more than anyone.

    And it looks like that link is already dead (none / 0) (#56)
    by Dadler on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:20:10 AM EST
    Damn.  I'll try to find another and post it later.

    Please do... (none / 0) (#62)
    by kdog on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:30:51 AM EST
    no sound in the cube.

    I'd like to hear both tributes...maybe I can catch a re-run on BET.


    it's at the very end of the show (none / 0) (#84)
    by Dadler on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:09:57 PM EST

    Good gravy. (none / 0) (#46)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 10:50:43 AM EST
    the big orange has a poll up showing Obama with a 41/49 approve disprove numbers within the party.

    That's gotta be ... (none / 0) (#58)
    by Yman on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:23:40 AM EST
    ... some kind of mistake.

    Or Kos polling is even waaaaaaay worse than I thought it was.


    Best Poll Info Out there is here (1.00 / 0) (#73)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:58:01 AM EST

    Simma down now.

    Funny thing:  This is Obama's low point. Bad economic numbers. Summer dolldrums. Deficit fight. Etc.

    All of these statements assume that where we are now is where we will be in 6 months or in 12 months.

    I am willing to the any bet proposed that the economy and and job numbers will be markedly better at the end of this year or even next summer than they are now.



    You (5.00 / 2) (#83)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:07:52 PM EST
    simmer down.

    I'm angry.


    The projection is for (none / 0) (#79)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:06:28 PM EST
    unemployment to be worse next year as we are starting a double dip.

    If things were going to get better by the end of the year, you would be seeing some improvement now but you aren't.

    Even the party regulars admit that Obama is in for a fight for reelection hence the wish that Michele Bachmann is the GOP nominee not Romney.


    You and Jonah Goldberg can (none / 0) (#97)
    by observed on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:33:08 PM EST
    go to your rooms.

    Weren't you claiming ... (none / 0) (#154)
    by Yman on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 07:06:57 PM EST
    ... just a few, short months ago that we'd be "in the 7's" (unemployment) when the 2012 election rolled around.  Aren't you the same guy who's been claiming for many months (until very recently) that the economy was improving, despite all evidence to the contrary?

    Now you say we're at the bottom ... for real, this time.  Things will be "markedly better" in 6-12 months?  For real, this time?



    BTW - I'd take that bet any day ... (none / 0) (#155)
    by Yman on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 07:12:25 PM EST
    ... of the week, but given your habit of moving the goalposts, define the "markedly better" numbers we'll see by the end of this year - unemployment, economic growth rate.

    No that it matters, since I'm sure there will be something that will happen before then that you will be able to blame for the failed forecast.

    Something entirely beyond Obama's control, of course.


    I was (none / 0) (#76)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 12:02:31 PM EST
    wrong. The approval numbers are for the party not for Obama with in the party.

    Tax cuts work, except when they don't. (none / 0) (#64)
    by jeffinalabama on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:33:22 AM EST
    Ah yes. Oil. (none / 0) (#65)
    by lentinel on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 11:35:32 AM EST
    BEIJING -- China's largest oil company has begun operations at the Al Ahdab oil field in Iraq, making the field the first major new area to start production in Iraq in 20 years, according to an official news report on Tuesday.

    The Chinese company, China National Petroleum Corporation, a state-owned enterprise, secured rights to the field under a technical services contract signed with the Iraqi government in November 2008.

    Another martini, bartender.

    The (none / 0) (#129)
    by CST on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 02:22:51 PM EST
    "Bulger" section of the front page on Boston.com is a lot smaller today.  Still front and center, but no longer taking up the whole page.

    Not much interesting new news, other than the fact that he apparently has been back to Boston in the last 16 years, armed to the teeth.  Oh, and the Feds are dropping the original racketeering charges that caused him to flee 16 years ago.  They decided to focus on the 19 murder counts.

    The fact (if true, it's (none / 0) (#132)
    by dk on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 02:28:19 PM EST
    apparently what he told the feds on the plan back to Boston after waiving his miranda rights, if I read it correctly)that he had been back to Boston a few times is pretty big news though, don't you think?

    yea (none / 0) (#133)
    by CST on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:05:06 PM EST
    it is to me, I understand why it would be to you.  Boston has been a changing city, and it feels like a lot of that is due to the missing presence of guys like Whitey for the last decade and a half.  The fact that he has been here during that time, and doing god knows what, is disconcerting.  Especially as I sometimes hang out in places that he allegedly used as burying grounds.

    I just don't think anyone else at TL would necessarily care.  But for some reason I am following this story like it's my job.


    I don't blame you. (none / 0) (#139)
    by dk on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 03:16:40 PM EST
    My partner and I are fascinated by it too.

    And I agree that it's a stark reminder that even if Boston has changed, it really wasn't so long ago that it was a very different place, and that vestiges of the "old Boston" are still with us.


    Is the change all good? (none / 0) (#150)
    by kdog on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 05:50:57 PM EST
    I mean I have no illusions of course about the ruthlessness and violence and intimidation and shakedown practices of organized crime, but the reason organized crime came into such power was they gave the people what they wanted.  Booze during prohibition, drugs ever since.  An honest gamble. Brothels. Help with a problem when there was no where else to turn (at a high cost, but help all the same).

    Replaced by what? Legitimate and legal ruthlessness, shakedowns, intimidation by the Brooks Brothers mafia?  Violence on the part of the state on their behalf?

    Color me unconvinced that a monopoly on the rackets by the oligarchy is an improvement.  Innocent bystander victims still abound, and good luck finding a bookie or cardgame.  


    I hear ya (none / 0) (#151)
    by dk on Tue Jun 28, 2011 at 05:59:42 PM EST
    and I consciously stuck with terms like "old" and "new" instead of "good" or "bad" because, as you point out, there's often shades of grey.  

    it's not (none / 0) (#157)
    by CST on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:39:30 AM EST
    all good, no change ever is, it's just different.

    Although if there is one thing that has certainly gotten better it's the law.  That is what made this case such a huge deal, was how currupt the law and state were back then, to the point where a mobster basically ran the FBI, and allegedly used them to eliminate his competition, or anyone else who happened to be in the way, even if it just meant being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

    I understand your frustration with the law, but the last few years things have eased up a bit.  Between the internet, the casinos, the new laws - and it's just not as violent as it use to be either.  But when the law is being run by organized crime, it's the worst of both worlds.


    Corruption... (none / 0) (#158)
    by kdog on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 09:56:35 AM EST
    is the worst of it, I hear ya. Before alcohol prohibition, Al Capone was a stick-up man and the vast majority were with the law and against stick-up men.  Prohibition gave everybody cause to rethink their allegiances, and gave a Capone the means to buy off pols and judges and cops.  

    Another little thought I forgot to mention...back when being gay was an arrestable offense in NY, the mafia were the only outfit willing to operate gay bars.  Yeah, they served over-priced watered down drinks, and had no love for gay people, but they were the only outfit willing to serve the gay community. Another check in the positives column for organized crime:)


    last night (none / 0) (#159)
    by CST on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:41:05 AM EST
    I was reading about the Bulgers and busing, and while they were both vehemently opposed to busing, Whitey apparently played a behind-the-scenes role in tampering down the violent aspect.  He didn't like the attention from all the cops and press hanging out in his neighborhood.

    Neighborhoods... (none / 0) (#160)
    by kdog on Wed Jun 29, 2011 at 10:50:48 AM EST
    where organized crime is prevalent are/were some of the safest working class neighborhoods around to walk the streets...if you're out to mug old ladies or be a general menace, you didn't do your dirty business in Bulger's or Gotti's neigborhood, thats for damn sure, the cops were the least of your worries...and the neighbors  appreciated that protection.