Thursday Open Thread

TalkLeft was down this morning, our hosting company had issues. It's fixed now. Here's an open thread, all topics welcome. Thanks to those of you who emailed me to let me know.

BTD -Still a very busy time for me. Maybe post tomorrow.

< MegaUpload Co-Defendants Granted Bail | Polish Parliament Members Don Guy Fawkes Masks >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • More perp walks for Walker staffers (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:01:10 AM EST
    in Wisconsin, the morning after his "state of the state" annual message touting all the wonderful things that he has accomplished in only a year.

    Then this -- in addition to, already, conviction of a donor and indictments of several aides and an FBI raid on another aide, when Walker's AG would not assist, and the list goes on and on -- and up toward Walker with every indictment:

    "Two staffers who worked directly for Gov. Scott Walker while he was county executive were charged Thursday with illegally doing extensive political work while being paid by taxpayers to do county jobs.

    "Kelly Rindfleisch, deputy chief of staff to Walker in 2010, faces four felony counts of misconduct in office for working for then-Rep. Brett Davis' 2010 campaign for lieutenant governor while on the county clock. Davis, who lost in the Republican primary, is now Walker's state Medicaid director.

    "Also facing two misdemeanors is Darlene Wink, Walker's one-time constituent services coordinator, who is accused of using county resources to raise money for Walker's 2010 gubernatorial bid. Wink, a former vice chair of the Milwaukee County Republican Party, resigned in May 2010 after admitting to the Journal Sentinel that she was spending part of her work day doing campaign work.

    "According to the Rindfleisch complaint, Walker sent a private email to a top staffer in the wake of the controversy.

    "We cannot afford another story like this one," Walker wrote to Timothy Russell, his longtime aide and adviser. . . .

    "Each of the felony counts against Rindfleish carries a maximum penalty of 3 1/2 years behind bars and a $10,000 fine. . . .

    "The charges are the latest in a 20-month John Doe investigation into the activities of Walker's former and current staffers. A John Doe is a secret probe in which prosecutors can compel testimony and subpoena documents while looking into possible criminal activity.

    "Already, Chisholm's office has charged Russell, former Walker deputy chief of staff, and former county veterans official Kevin Kavanaugh with stealing more than $60,000 in donations intended for Operation Freedom, an annual event honoring veterans at the county zoo. Both are facing multiple felonies.

    "Russell's domestic partner, Brian Pierick, was also charged with two felonies for child enticement. . . ."

    if you are quoting from an article (none / 0) (#2)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:03:46 AM EST
    please state the source and please don't quote too much due to copyright issues. Thanks!

    Trying TL linking in different browser (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:35:48 AM EST
    Here's the story.

    Yay!  Now I'm going to create a new app in this browser and delete the old one.  Bye bye, Firefox.


    Sorry, still having link problems (none / 0) (#7)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:18:56 AM EST
    with my browsers and this site, for some reason (per earlier posts), or I would have linked more and posted less.  

    I can see that mention of the source in the story may have been missed: It's the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.  (I would italicize that, but that doesn't work for me at this site anymore, either.)  

    There already is another update now, for anyone following this -- and there will be more.  Also see more in the Madison media at madison.com.


    Maybe you could describe what (none / 0) (#11)
    by BTAL on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:24:57 AM EST
    FF is doing and some here could help resolve the issue.

    It's "forbidding scripts" (none / 0) (#12)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:32:51 AM EST
    which seems to block a lot else, too.

    I'm going to go see if this occurs with TL on another browser.

    (I hate MS, FF, etc., "security updates," which always seem to cause some problem or other.  This has occurred before, if not this bad, and then the next update fixes the problem -- and causes another one.  But, in case someone suggests this: I will not block the updates that block the cr*p that has caused costly computer crashes in past.)


    I Have FF 9.0.1 (none / 0) (#55)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:46:36 PM EST
    At home and at work, no issues.

    I have pop-up blocker.  It's been resolved, but the Acrobat plug-in was giving me a lot of issues.  I ended up uninstalling FF and reinstalling it at work because that is a much have to work on certain web based programs.  Everything was fine after that.


    I use FF8.01 (none / 0) (#57)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:54:32 PM EST
    I had upgraded to FF9, but - I normally have anywhere from 60 to 70 sites open in tabs at any given time, and the plugin-container.exe that Firefox uses to contain flash so that the container can crash without crashing Firefox if there is a problem with a video works properly in FF8 but in FF9 it wants more and more CPU for each video on any of the pages - so it uses 100% CPU in FF9 but not in FF8. IOW, it was locking up my machine and crashing the whole system.

    You can downgrade to FF8 simply by downloading it and running the installer. It will revert without removing your bookmarks and session history.


    Yes, that plug-in container problem (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:10:22 PM EST
    has been my bane for quite a while now, really slowing down or blocking sites on the FF browser, even before this latest problem.  I go in and delete the plug-in containers (per some info I found in searching on this), and the FF browser works fine for a while . . . and then the buildup occurs again.  It's so aggravating, so I started to switch over to other browsers, but still had shortcut icons to TL and such sites on FF.  No more.

    Thanks, though, for the tip to just go backwards from FF 9.0 and get back to when FF worked.  I will do that, too.


    Also - there are (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:16:18 PM EST
    some people apparently working on an extension for Chrome that would import all session history (tabs) and bookmarks from FireFox into Chrome - not quite ready yet, but I'll use it and switch when it's workable. I'll post something here when it happens...

    I had that Acrobat problem, too (none / 0) (#63)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:15:00 PM EST
    and also upgraded to 9.0.  Now, per the advice below, I'm dumping 9.0 and retrograding.

    I truly tire of upgrades that do not anticipate  interrelated problems with other programs.  It's like when a lousy physician prescribes a new med without checking for drug interactions with other meds.  I dump those physicians, and I'm going to be dumping as much as I can from my computer that makes my work harder rather than easier.

    However, like you, per your posts yesterday, I'm too tied to Google, Gmail, etc., to entirely dump that.  But I did, per your tips (I think these were yours, too?) spend time yesterday on review of my Dashboard.  Again, that makes my work harder, not easier, but what can we do. . . .


    FF Used to Ask If I wanted to Upgrade... (5.00 / 1) (#95)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:10:59 PM EST
     ...and I passed for a couple of weeks, figuring the bugs would get worked out.  Now when I open it, occasionally it installs an update, hate that.

    The Walker story just gets juicier (none / 0) (#180)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 08:11:28 PM EST
    with every update today; here's the latest.  There have been many, many updates, as each one seems to make phones ring in the newsroom with something else that somebody finally is willing to spill.

    (And keep in mind the yummy timing of the initial news release from the DA, only hours after Walker's "state of the state" annual address . . . . which slipped from the headlines, but fast.)

    Charges coming of destruction of digital evidence and of evidence tampering by the "shadow government" set up with a special router in Walker's county exec office -- but he knew not a thing about it! uh huh -- to evade public records laws and lots more ahead.

    Count so far, as I "recall":  One conviction of a donor.  Five staffers and former staffers indicted or facing indictment for assorted felonies and misdemeanors for everything from malfeasance in public service to stealing from veterans' children to child enticement (oh, the things that can be found on computers). Some of those are desperately trying to plead down by talking, along with number-one mouthpiece for the gov -- the guy still Walker's spokesman -- taking immunity from prosecution to talk, too.  

    And a recent story named others even higher up, even closer to Walker, than his spokesman, his cabinet member, his former deputy chiefs (yes, plural) of staff.  This is far, far from over.

    I hope that they find something on Walker's AG, too -- the one who refused to assist in the raid of the Madison home of a current Walker staffer, so the FBI had to do the job that the AG would not do.


    p.s. And RNC chair Reince Priebus (none / 0) (#182)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 08:32:23 PM EST
    he of the improbable name that Jon Stewart just loves to try to pronounce, now is named for a bit part -- so far -- in the ongoing investigation.

    On getting results from politicians (5.00 / 4) (#5)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:09:40 AM EST
    There is a enormous and powerful difference between millions of people not voting for a particular party, and millions of people saying loud and clear to that party: "we guarantee we will give you millions of votes, more than enough to tip the scale...... once you have done a or b or c or d or any combination of those things, and as soon as we see that you've done that you can relax in the confidence that you have won even before election day arrives, otherwise you've already lost and you might as well tell your corporate donors now that their money has been pi$$ed away for absolutely nothing and that you were an utter and pathetic waste of their time, and quit campaigning".

    It takes planning, and it takes a determination to make decisions not out of fear but out of the power and leverage you know you have, but have only if you use it.

    The democrats won the 2006 midterms effectively by running on an end the Iraq war platform. The first major thing they did afterwards was to betray the voters with the first emergency supplemental war funding bill passed by a democratic congress. The result was a folding of hands by the fake democratic antiwar movement who showed themselves to be really only interested in democratic wins, but not in progressive results.

    The democrats have had years to "incrementalize" their way into producing good progressive results. They haven't done so, and you now have an effectively republican congress and president.

    That Democrats are politicians and being politician will do whatever it takes to win the votes they need means that the fear of republicans or the fear of losing ground is a phantom fear if enough people threaten the dems with extreme loss of votes unless and until they do something useful to win those votes back, which they will do because they are politicians and they need those votes to survive politically.

    It's an eyeball to eyeball poker game right down to election day, and it cannot be a bluff from the voters.

    People have to be strong enough to say to the dems - "Look, if you're going to ACT like republicans then we're going to let republicans have your jobs your fools - now get busy and PRODUCE some useful progressive legislation or you're history. Come back when you've produced, and I guarantee you my vote" - and mean it.

    The dems will do it, and if on the off chance they're too stupid to do it then they aren't worth your vote anyway.

    It's called voting for results instead of promises.

    The best that can happen with this approach is beyond your wildest dreams, and the worst that can happen with this is that if nobody else does it while you do you won't be defending yourself after the fact for having voted for people who could have done their jobs but wouldn't.

    I agree in principle, but I wonder what (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:11:18 PM EST
    kind of numbers we are looking at? Are you looking at only the pool of people that voted for Obama in 2008, or at the total pool of potential voters - some of whom don't vote at all, possibly out of just these frustrations, and some of whom already vote 3rd party?

    I'm looking at the math the way the WH will in order to determine the effectiveness of what you are proposing. So far the WH strategy seems to be to ignore the votes lost on the left, and make them up in the middle.  If at all possible they will point to the anger of the left in order to court the middle. It is just easier to do that than to fight for real change.

    So, I agree with you and plan to do what you suggest. I'm just pretty sure the WH will use me as leverage to go after some milquetoast 'Independents'.


    I'll add: in the binary world in which (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:13:34 PM EST
    either Obama or Romgrich will be the next POTUS, I will be very happy if it is Obama.

    Well, I don't imagine (5.00 / 3) (#48)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:27:20 PM EST
    that even Obama thinks he'll get too many votes from the right - although given his actions over that past three years that appears to me to be what he is trying to get.

    But when people make voting decisions - or any decisions, for that matter - out of fear, they've lost before they started, imo.

    Republicans specialize at selling fear.

    Democrats ignoring issues and the concerns and day to day reality most Americans are living in while trying to sell fear of republicans is nothing more than emulating republicans.

    When a salesman tells you you should buy his product and the best reason he can give you is that the other guys product is crap, he may be right about the other guys product, but it also means that salesman hasn't got anything to sell you that's worth you buying from him.

    One would hope that emulating republicans is not the best that Democrats and Obama supporters have to offer now.

    Everyone has a choice to make leading up election day. They can decide - being afraid of risk and thinking it's safer - that they will vote out of fear, or they can use the only leverage they have to force results out of politicians.


    Another analogy would be that if that last time you ordered a pizza the store took your credit card and billed you but never delivered, would you give them your credit card number again on a promise to deliver?

    Or would you say fine - I'd love a pizza! Deliver it! - and I'll pay you when you deliver?


    That is certainly why I stopped donating (5.00 / 2) (#51)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:32:04 PM EST
    actual money to the Dems!

    There are more votes (none / 0) (#44)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:22:11 PM EST
    in the middle than on the left.  The GOP is different.  They have more votes on the right than the middle.

    Also, the AA community is going to come out in full force because we generally think he is doing a decent job and believe that he is being unfairly treated, which is going to neutralize the threats from the far left.

    Obama has to win the independents and moderates. If he does, he wins the election.

    I think that is the basic math, which should put Edger's idea in perspective.  What we should be doing is picking 2-3 very clear liberal issues and convincing the dreaded independents that they should be supported.  That will mean conceding some things, but that is a way to effect real change on Obama's policy.


    I think that is probably true (5.00 / 2) (#50)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:30:16 PM EST
    as far as the WH strategy goes. I just think people can stand hearing about more than 2-3 ideas at a time. Maybe they do not all come to fruition, but the groundwork gets laid.

    Fair point. (none / 0) (#52)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:33:43 PM EST
    I don't see it Edger (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by ZtoA on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:49:16 PM EST
    IMO it is just too late. That opportunity is gone, if it ever existed. The dem party did not take that message out of the 2010 elections, they are not going to now.

    Also, there has to be a leader of sorts to facilitate what you are arguing for. Big media voices.

    I may have given up hope but I do like reading you and others.


    I know (none / 0) (#70)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:21:01 PM EST
    I've been calling for a movement like this since 2007 - I think it could have been used to force defunding and ending the Iraq occupation before the 2008 election. Yes - it takes work and time to build up - but it has to start somewhere.

    In the meantime I'd reiterate that the worst that can happen with this is that if nobody else does it while you do you won't be defending yourself after the fact for having voted for people who could have done their jobs but wouldn't.


    Responses (none / 0) (#28)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:50:42 AM EST
    1. The president is not a king.  I suspect that the promises you want him to make could not, for the most part, be accomplished with an objectionist GOP House.  Will you demands reflect that or will it simply be a wish list of everything you want without any realpolitik?

    2. Not everyone agrees on what is to be asked for.  Your position assumes that you can get basic agreement from a sizable chunk of the democratic party on what we should demand Obama do?  You cannot.  For you economic issues are important, for others it is gay marriage, for me it might be court appointments, for others it might be the wars and for still others it might be issues of choice.  

    The only person who is going to agree with your agenda 100% is you.  Your proposal has no room for the concept that at best a POTUS can probably only satisfy 45% of his base 50% of the time.  There are studies that show that even the most base loyal and beloved presidents have a 30-65% hit rate with their base.

    I do not think your expectations are anywhere near realistic or supportable by any president's experience we have ever had ever.

    The left was calling FDR a sellout when he was passing SS for goodness sakes. You think Obama has a chance to make Anne and Edger and NYShooter and BTD and Jeralyn and me and MKS and Don and everyone else here happy AND somehow through a miracle win election.

    It's all ludicrous.

    You choose a guy that believes generally, big picture, what you believe and you vote for him and if he gives you 20-35% of what he promised and you asked for, you have a good president.  That's the realistic standard in a country with 300 million people and almost that many lists of what the president should do.


    The Obama administration has announced (none / 0) (#88)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:00:35 PM EST
    a reduction in the armed forces of 80,000.

    He is being critized by Republicans for this.

    Crickets here.


    How can you say crickets? (5.00 / 3) (#152)
    by sj on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:37:27 PM EST
    You just brought it up yourself.  As you should for an issue that concerns or interests you.  Why expect others to do it for you?

    Only 80,000? (none / 0) (#92)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:05:51 PM EST
    That bastard...j/k;)

    Seriously though I'd rather they focus the defense spending cuts on weapons and closing foreign installations, but any reduction is better than than the usual expansion.


    The explanation from (none / 0) (#96)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:12:03 PM EST
    Jack Jacobs on MSNBC (who said btw that he thought the cuts would jeopardize our national security) was that cuts in weapons programs occur in the out (distant) years; whereas, cuts in personnel represenet cuts now.

    It is great step forward--the fewer troops we have, the less tempting to invade another country.

    I think it is like the Keystone Pipline setup--a bargaining chip. If Republicans want no troop cuts, what do they give up?


    Or the cynical view... (5.00 / 0) (#104)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:23:49 PM EST
    drones and assorted technologies replacing the need for human soldiers, no meaningful change in the ability to be a foreign aggressor.

    They say a drone can bomb a mudhut better than I can damn do it...


    Maybe (none / 0) (#105)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:25:40 PM EST
    But a drone strike is much better than an all-out invasion....

    For our soldiers, yes... (5.00 / 1) (#108)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:31:01 PM EST
    for the poor slob getting death rained on him/her from above, I don't think they know a difference.

    In fact, I think drones and the like make foreign aggression more likely in the future...the thought of dead Americans coming home in coffins becomes less of a cause for pause.  


    I look at it in terms of (none / 0) (#109)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:33:41 PM EST
    the scope of the violence.   A drone strike may hit one house....

    An invasion will ruin an entire country and kill tens of thousands....


    I'd rather we cut the drones (none / 0) (#112)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:37:26 PM EST
    That's 80,000 jobs lost right?

    Not to say all layoffs are bad though... (none / 0) (#117)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:46:50 PM EST
    I see the need for soldiers on the payroll, in case we are invaded or something, but if Obama laid off the entire DEA tomorrow I'd give him a standing O.

    Jobs in the tyranny and misery sectors are not worth keeping just for the sake of jobs...get a real f*ckin' job.


    That's true... (none / 0) (#113)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:38:36 PM EST
    but I still worry drones make it way too easy....it's creepy, and kind of cowardly.

    Meanwhile, in L.A.: (none / 0) (#146)
    by oculus on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:21:23 PM EST
    It is a Brave New World (none / 0) (#149)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:33:19 PM EST
    Hooray! (none / 0) (#97)
    by Dadler on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:12:05 PM EST
    Unfortunately, because we live in fantasyland about fiat economics and the magical creation of jobs, that will be 80,000 more people fighting for fewer and fewer openings that pay a decent wage.

    Until we decide, as a society, to employe people for the sake of employing them, at more than just a living wage, because we think our fellow humans worthy, and because it beats chaos, all our talks about jobs and money and the rest seem very pointless, quite absurd actually.  Which is why 80,000 laid of soldiers doesn't strike me as hugely significant in the scope of our real problems.



    Yes, (none / 0) (#99)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:14:52 PM EST
    I have a co-worker who's husband has 18 years in the Air Force. He's an officer and was told that he is going to lose his job and his pension, but if he can secure a job in the reserves, he might get to keep his pension.

    Fantastic news.


    RIFs generally don't (1.00 / 1) (#106)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:27:15 PM EST
    get people close to their 20 years....

    You really think this is the wrong way to go?  You agree with the Republicans on this?


    Well the one before this did (none / 0) (#110)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:35:00 PM EST
    (he got the news  this past summer - the last time they did this).

    But your mastery of spin shines through again!  Take something I said, and turn into a "you agree with Republicans" comment and voilà! You can then feel free to call me a (gasp) conservative!  It's quite a skill, really.

    I'm saying that you should act so gleeful about 80,000 people losing their jobs and benefits.  Or do you think like a Republican?  


    You should NOT act so gleeful (none / 0) (#111)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:36:07 PM EST
    It sounds as if your friend in spite of (none / 0) (#114)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:40:51 PM EST
    his notice is still in the Service ....

    I am not happy about people losing their jobs.  I am happy about a reduction in military spending.....

    I come from a military family.   Spare me the lectures.


    No (none / 0) (#116)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:45:23 PM EST
    He was done in November.

    But since you have conservative views that it's good mews to take away jobs and pensions from people, I hope you get a chance to cheer your boy Newt on tonight.  Maybevyou can send him some money - he needs it.


    "My boy Newt"? (none / 0) (#119)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:53:43 PM EST
    Think your boy Mitt will beat him?

    As I said below (none / 0) (#121)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:58:19 PM EST
    Mitt is not my boy.  I'm not gonna vote for him.

    But you just keep cheerleading for Newt.


    I remember getting a troll rating (none / 0) (#126)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:12:25 PM EST
    from Oculus for calling Newt a "despicable human being."

    The rating it turns out was accidental btw.

    I said last week he was Nixon without self-discipline.

    TPM yesterday quoted Progressive fundraisers as saying that all this Newtmentum was never going anywhere, but was "funny as sh*t."  Ha!

    Just nice to see the Republicans messed up....and they know it, which is why Newt will get the bewt ("boot")--and maybe pretty soon.

    All this seems pretty obvious, no?


    I understand why they and you do it (5.00 / 1) (#128)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:23:41 PM EST
    It would certainly be easier to run against a lunatic like Newt instead having to go toe to toe with Romney.

    But frankly, all I'm doing is responding to your comments as you do to mine and others.  I'm going to make stuff up and interpret and twist  your words so that you always sound like a Newt lover.

    Reverse spin, and all that.


    The difference between you and me (none / 0) (#147)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:22:10 PM EST
    is that I am clearly for Obama and against the Republicans--both Newt and Mitt; whereas, you are not at all clear about the reasons for your defense of Mitt.

    As to being clear, you are only clearly anti-Obama.

    That you espouse the stuff from the birther ranks about Dreams From My Father shows a lot.

    You have said you just want to make sure we Obama supporters understand reality--as if that was something that escapes some of us.

    It is amusing to be told about reality...

    Occam's razor:  you are just anti-Obama.


    Hilarious! (5.00 / 1) (#151)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:35:30 PM EST
    You just tried to admit that, like ABG, it's really only about Obama for you, as opposed to good and helpful policies. Although since we know you applaud 80,000 people being put of work, Newt is really more your style.

    I don't have "a defense of Mitt" (there's that spin again!), but rather try to show the bigger picture of how voters will choose him as the nominee instead of cheering on your favorite Freddie Mac historian in a race to the bottom of political discourse.

    While your spin grows old and tiresome, I thank you for the laugh you just provided me with your transparent attempt to paint me as a Republican once more.

    You're going to need to work a lot harder.  LOL.


    Speaking of which (none / 0) (#118)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:50:20 PM EST
    I drove Pops around Camp Pendleton the other day.

    You have to have authorization to get on base and Pops got us in.....I had never been before.

    A more beautiful piece of property is hard to imagine.  You can't see much of it from the freeway because it is tucked in behind a series of hills and valleys.

    Gently rolling hills with oak trees.  Small lakes.   Lots of undeveloped hills and fields....The Base housing is very good.....Mediteranean looking stucco houses--but new.



    Interesting nugget from (none / 0) (#163)
    by dk on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 05:01:54 PM EST
    this article:

    As for health care, [Panetta] plans no changes for active duty troops and their families, but "we decided that to help control the growth of health care costs, we are recommending increases in health care fees, co-pays and deductibles for retirees." Panetta said.

    Welcome to the real world of U.S. healthcare, vets.


    Tornados cometh (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:36:35 AM EST
    Hopefully they will skip us.  All schools releasing students at lunch.

    Got storm shutters (none / 0) (#17)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:39:28 AM EST
    on the windows?

    I have a dugout under the house ;) (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:41:49 AM EST
    My favorite dugouts (5.00 / 5) (#29)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:52:26 AM EST
    come back into play starting April 4.

    Actually, Spring Traning begins ... (none / 0) (#107)
    by cymro on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:28:04 PM EST
    ... on Feb 29th in Florida, March 2nd in Arizona. I've had my travel and game tickets booked for one 3-day weekend since the day tickets went on sale in mid December.

    Even better! ;-) (none / 0) (#23)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:44:24 AM EST
    Geez, MT, it's a little early (none / 0) (#19)
    by caseyOR on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:40:32 AM EST
    in the year for tornados, isn't it? IIRC, from my Illinois childhood, tornado season doesn't start until April.

    Maybe an earlier season is one of the byproducts of global climate change.

    Whatever it is, hope you and yours are safe.


    I wish I could tell you more about (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:44:39 AM EST
    the particular weather history of this area.  I have a great neighbor though born and raised here who was shocked by the killer tornado we had in 2007.  In her lifetime a tornado had never hit Enterprise.  She was even more shocked when two years later a tornado hit City Hall and the police department.  Enterprise was never in "tornado alley" she says, and she says that something has changed.

    Moksha... (none / 0) (#58)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:58:12 PM EST
    Chattering finch and water-fly
    Are not merrier than I
    Here among the flowers I lie
    Laughing everlastingly
    No: I may not tell the best
    Surely, friends, I could have guessed
    Death was but the good king's jest
    It was hid so carefully

    -- G.K. Chesterton

    -- Moksha (9 min.) ;-)


    Late January through early march is one of the (none / 0) (#164)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 05:22:20 PM EST
    three peak seasons here. A cold fromt, then a warm front, 70 degrees one day, 30 the next, Gulf moisture,  prime weather for tornadoes.

    Oh, no tornadoes in Colombia or Romania. Just sayin'.


    Saw news of that weather (none / 0) (#20)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:41:27 AM EST
    with torrential rains, too, in Houston yesterday.

    Still waiting to hear from a family member who is there on business -- and was looking forward to relief from winter weather in the North.  Oops.  He probably will have to stay there into next week, too, as his work is on computers there, and the city had huge power outages from the storms.  

    And even worse rains hit Austin, I read -- almost 10 inches in only a few hours.  Take cover, take care, check bottled-water supply or fill up some bottles, and check flashlight batteries, too, MT.  If you're getting what Texas got, it's a big one.


    Not Bad In Houston (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:40:49 PM EST
    They were calling for tornadoes, but nothing.  Actually, the outline for tornadoes included work and we are right in the middle of the city, that would have been nutz.

    It got dark, like night dark.  No lightening and the winds weren't crazy.  It flooded a bit, but that happens frequently because it's flat land here.

    It was over a two hours.  Beautiful out today.


    Thanks! Still waiting to hear (none / 0) (#65)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:17:03 PM EST
    from my family member for more details, and the weather service did confirm tornados, but I'm glad to know that he's got the sunshine again today.

    I Haven't Hear of Any Damage or Injuries (none / 0) (#85)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:55:04 PM EST
    Not that it didn't happen, but nothing news worthy.

    Ya, today is one of those perfect days for not feeling so well and catching a ball game with some compadres.  Soon enough.


    I have lots of oil lamps (none / 0) (#25)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:46:02 AM EST
    After the Katrina hurricane season when we first moved here I bought a bunch because power was out in some places for at least a week.

    I'm going to Austin for the weekend (none / 0) (#62)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:12:40 PM EST
    I do have a history of disaster travel...earthquakes, fires, tornadoes, bombs. My friend in Austin says the effects were isolated to specific areas. Forecast was looking nice and sunny so I did not even think to check. Pretty amazing how suddenly things can change.

    Nine inches of rain and still coming down (none / 0) (#68)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:19:20 PM EST
    at some point yesterday in Austin.  Yikes.  But as we saw when in Tempe on time, much depends upon whether a city has cared to put a good infrastructure in place to cope.  Tempe did not, and it meant a miserable time there -- although it gave me an interesting glimpse at what life must have been like a few centuries ago where I live, before we built a liveable, modern city. . . .

    Do you plan to rent a car? !!!! (none / 0) (#87)
    by oculus on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:57:53 PM EST
    Ha! NO! (5.00 / 1) (#186)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 10:02:06 PM EST
    I am taking 4 days off from all automotive responsibility. Can't wait!

    Hey, ruffian (none / 0) (#160)
    by Zorba on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:54:33 PM EST
    Not meaning to be rude or anything, and you seem like a wonderful person, but if disasters follow you around, do me a huge favor and don't visit Maryland.  Please?  Pretty please?   ;-)

    Hmmmm, I think I delivered record ice storms (5.00 / 2) (#187)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 10:04:34 PM EST
    to PAX river back a few years ago. My work there is finished!

    I do want to visit a couple of friends in D.C. at some point, but I think I will wait until there is a GOP president.


    Ruffian (none / 0) (#173)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 06:52:13 PM EST
    We can meet up somewhere if you DO get up to DC.  I'm a weather disaster-magnet myself (hurricane, tornado, tropical storm, earthquake, Snowmageddon, and natural gas explosion).

    Maybe our energy would cancel the bad ju-ju out and we could spend time with fruity drinks and Sand Diego-style weather.  :)


    Ha! Hey, it would either cancel out (none / 0) (#188)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 10:06:14 PM EST
    Or be the perfect storm. I will let you know!

    Don't know if you've seen this (5.00 / 1) (#103)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:20:11 PM EST
    Maybe... (none / 0) (#142)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:17:52 PM EST
    Newt is the twin brother Dwight is always claiming to have eaten/absorbed in the womb.

    Who will Newt blame tonight? (5.00 / 1) (#137)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:04:31 PM EST
    Mmmm, lots of linky goodness there (5.00 / 0) (#179)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 07:48:40 PM EST
    that's giving me such a craving for popcorn.

    Pull up a chair, folks.  This is fun!


    Hmmm..... (none / 0) (#3)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:04:33 AM EST
    For those who love daily polls, they might want to check out the latest ones out of Florida.

    Seems Gingrich's star might just be fading a bit.....

    Yes (1.00 / 1) (#6)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:17:18 AM EST
    two out today have your boy back on top. My question is, who is it that has already drawn up the papers to file suit against Florida's winner take all system? I can't find who it is, just that it was moving forward a week ago.

    Florida's Primary may be on track to be as meaningless with regard to delegates as it was four years ago. The money dropped here however Florida is very thankful for, and I presume it's why the Florida GOP was happy to lose the delegates in exchange.


    Not "my boy" (5.00 / 3) (#10)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:24:50 AM EST
    I'm not gonna vote for him.

    I've just been saying for 2 years that he will be the nominee, bur others around here have been trying to giveceeadons why anybody but Mitt will win, and the reasons have gotten crazier as time has passed.  Kinda like Newtie supporters - especially the ones who shill for him here.


    And the more they spend in Florida (none / 0) (#8)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:21:05 AM EST
    and other primaries and states that may prove less consequential, the less they may have to spend in the general election, the Senate and House elections, etc.  Keep dropping the big bucks, boys!

    Links (none / 0) (#4)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:08:47 AM EST
    RCP average

    Insider Advantage - Romney up by 8

    CNN / Time - Romney up by 2

    Rasmussen - Romney up by 8

    Only PPP still has Gingrich up by 5, but that is 3 days old.

    What will tonight's debate bring?


    It is only a matter of time (none / 0) (#90)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:02:20 PM EST
    before Romney clinches it.....But the longer Newt can stay in, the better.

    I don't know how Gingrich will overcome (none / 0) (#13)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:34:13 AM EST
    the "money" problem.  Can't believe one billionaire can give him 10 million dollars in the span of two states too and I can even type that.  Great write up at DailyKos though, Open Letter to Surly Republican Friends and how the Republican base will now have to contend with destroying functioning democracy within their own party.

    To keep up with Romney (none / 0) (#27)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:47:44 AM EST
    Gingrich will need several more of those helping hands.

    Courtesy of FOX News...
    So far Romney and his Super Pac have bought $14 million in TV ad time in Florida. Gingrich has only managed $1.8 million. Still plenty of time left for both of them though.


    Responses to prior comments (none / 0) (#9)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:23:57 AM EST
    Man.  You don't realize how much you hit TL until it is gone, do you.

    Back to business:

    NYShooter: I would be perfectly happy to have reasonable discussions where issues were discussed and politics debated with nuance.  Not everyone is up for that.  They instead assert that those who disagree with them are sheep or ignorant or stupid.  That's an issue. Comparing Edger's single minded hatred of Obama to the single minded hatred of Obama by Team Foxnews is the most gentle comebacks available to some of the stuff he says about those who don't hate Obama all the time everyday.  Why is there no outrage when people making logically supportable defenses of Obama are attacked as conservative or ignorant?

    Anne:  First, I don't support Obama unconditionally. I don't know anyone who does.  Again, for the millionth time, you disagree with his supporters on the value and worth of what he has done.  It is possible to believe that he gets a B- grade and still deserves our vote.  Your position seems even more ridiculous.  You completely ignore or minimize every positive thing he's accomplished and then accuse others of viewing him with rose colored glassed.  What kind of glasses are you wearing when a President with an increasingly positive approval number, majority support by every demographic of his party and the odds on favorite to win two terms has not done one positive thing according to you.  At the end of the day you have folks like MKS and me arguing that Obama's done some good and some bad but overall not terrible, while you are arguing that Obama has never done a single thing right and is as conservative as Newt and Mitt.  Bottom line: I think if you take my position and your position and poll 1,000 liberals about who has a fairer and clearer view of the last 3 years, I am going to win that contest.  I am certain of it.  I just don't think many liberals share your view, although you speak as if your worldview is fact.

    Anyway, this just seemed like a really ridiculous proposal:

    "The best and most effective way that Obama supporters can grow support for Obama and increase his re-election prospects is to . . . do everything possible beginning now to drive his polling numbers and approval rate into the basement and make it is clear as a club on the head to him that he will lose in November otherwise."

    It hurts my head just to read that.

    You are unconvincing (5.00 / 3) (#22)
    by ZtoA on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:42:54 AM EST
    I was late to an earlier open thread, but I'll repeat: some people do binary and some do not. Our political system is binary and some people simply do not fit into the binary cubby. Nevertheless, alliances can be formed.

    I find it interesting that you comment in reaction to just certain others. And you are only "angry" about certain dems. TL has voices that are republican, libertarian, independent, democratic, liberal, socialist and probably a few other persuasions. Yet you only argue with dissatisfied democrats and former dems. And you are not persuasive. Entertaining, yes. There are other strictly party voices here that are actually very persuasive, but when you call potential allies "hateful" it doesn't help to the point where I wonder what your real motives are.


    Unconvincing (5.00 / 3) (#73)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:27:13 PM EST
    is a nice way of putting it. Detrimental is the word I would use.

    Actually (1.00 / 0) (#32)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:57:17 AM EST
    I comment angrily to people who magically find a way to make every topic into a platform on why Obama is a terrible president in every way.

    Anne is not an ally.  Edger is not an ally.  They are people who dislike Obama, will never change that dislike and are willing to see President Romney or Gingrich in office to prove a point to a democratic liberal president who has been less than perfect.

    People like that are not my political allies.  They are a big part of the problem.  I believe that they are our version of the Tea Party and they make it difficult for us to get anything done.  They would rather agree to nothing and make a point than meet halfway and move forward with a less than perfect advance.

    There is no difference between that and the folks in congress willing to crash the economy if it means raising taxes a penny.

    I am not aligned with either the Tea Party or the folks demanding absolute liberal loyalty.

    We should be fighting both of those groups at every turn.


    No - you should be using the (5.00 / 2) (#42)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:18:10 PM EST
    liberals left of you as wind at your back, not fighting them. That is where I think you are wrong. You get no leverage fighting people who believe a superset of what you believe.

    Yes, it should not be surprising that (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by KeysDan on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:06:17 PM EST
    liberals would be dissatisfied with some, or even many,  of the president's policies and actions since some, or even many, are not liberal. Similarly, it should be unsurprising that conservatives are dissatisfied with just about everything the president is and does. The difference is that the right did not and will not vote for Obama.  The liberals are likely to not only have voted for Obama but are prepared to do so in 2012.

    And, others may take other actions, but would not consider a Romney or Gingrich. While potentially of instant electoral damage, dissatisfied liberals are persuadable--just the changes in tone in the recent past has re-invigorated many. The problems are avoidable.  Being dismissive, however, is no way to Win the Future.  Still, much energy is given to capturing those conservatives and independents (aka Republicans)---likely to no avail.  Better the time be spent on the professional left's ideas for governance.


    Independents (none / 0) (#66)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:18:10 PM EST
    They elect democratic presidents.  They are generally happy with Obama's middle of the road approach.  If he lurches left to chase the further left of the party, he loses or splits the independents and the far right becomes more powerful on net and he loses.

    That's the math problem.

    There is no solution to the math problem that involves upsetting the independents.  This is how Clinton won two terms.  It will be how Obama wins two terms.

    The left doesn't like the crazy right or the professional left and if Obama has to choose one of three paths for his own sake (and to prevent a GOP win) he has to choose the independents.


    You are correct (5.00 / 2) (#74)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:28:41 PM EST
    To say that those in the middle (which is mostly everybody) and or independents decide elections.

    However, wouldn't it better to use the power of the inherent bully pulpit of rhe presidency to propose and promote good liberal policy instead of trying to start negotiating from the center middle?  Why not argue from an actual liberal position (and I don't mean "loony left") and convince people to come to your side?  The Tea Party isn't gonna go there anyway, so why spend your energy trying to convince them?  Persuade the people on the fence, especially when, on issue after issue, they want to go there anyways.

    But the problem is that many middlings see him as not persuasive because they know he'll give in to the crazy right anyway.


    Yes, on domestic issues, (none / 0) (#81)
    by KeysDan on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:42:53 PM EST
    President's leadership appears to be one of seeking consensus, rather than moulding it--seeing equivalence of views and facilitating a outcome in which everyone is at least 50 percent happy.  On foreign matters the president works in a different mode, for example, START and Libya.

    True (none / 0) (#86)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:57:50 PM EST
    But there is a downside to the bully pulpit.  These arguments assume that if Obama simply presses as hard as he can, fails and move the chains left, that there is no cost to him.  But there is a cost and the cost is huge of the middle (that is already being bombarded by PACs telling us that Obama is a socialist) hates the policies being promoted.

    A central fallacy to many arguments here is that if Obama pushes left as hard as he can that it will have no effect on his re-election chances.  It certainly will, which is why he has to weigh the costs/benefits of moving the country left and losing and that loss having the effect of moving the country right.

    In many minds here there is no downside (because they support the ideals he would push) and that's just not true.

    Independents are called independents because they don't like a lot of what we on the left do.  That has to be taken into account.


    Lesson #1,342 in How to Win (5.00 / 1) (#115)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:41:30 PM EST
    Friends and Influence People.

    "But there is a downside to the bully pulpit.  These arguments assume that if Obama simply presses as hard as he can, fails and move the chains left, that there is no cost to him."

    Who cares about the cost to him?  Other than you, that is, and others paid to work for the White House, the Obama campaign, etc.  But why talk to them, when you've already got them?

    Talk about the cost to us, to we-the-people.  (Or if there is no cost to us, skip it, and find something that does resonate with us, with we-the-people . . . the voters.)  


    The cost to him is a cost to us (none / 0) (#120)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:54:56 PM EST
    I don't care what anyone says, the ultimate danger is losing the white house.

    If pushing on a policy too hard results in losing the white house to the GOP, we need to push more softly.  Most of the things people here are furious about started when the GOP had power.  

    Nothing that could be said in a bully pulpit is worth that.



    See, that's how to (5.00 / 1) (#124)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:04:04 PM EST
    Lose Friends and Not Influence People.

    Lesson #1,343:

    Show, don't just tell.

    Show why what's all about him is about someone else.

    Show why losing the White House is the "ultimate danger" -- so dangerous that you resort to those politics-of-fear sorts of statements.  Show why this is so much more dangerous than the real dangers that many of us are living, in this life-on-the-edge economy, without houses at all.


    Here's a few examples (none / 0) (#134)
    by vicndabx on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:58:39 PM EST
    I posted this in another thread, about the lack of regulation and scaling back of activities before, during and immediately after the financial crisis.  A poorly run or, worse-case scenario, complicit, executive branch caused a lot of the issues you fight against.

    You fight for your beloved Wisconsin everyday to get the head of your state's executive branch out - why does this same logic not extend to the federal level?

    Why not just keep Scott Walker there and work thru your other local officials?


    vicdabx, I've read your comment (none / 0) (#156)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:50:22 PM EST
    several times now, and I looked at your link, and I just don't see the connection that you are trying to make (or, that I am trying to understand).  You are suggesting that I try to recall Obama?  Huh?  (Joe Biden becomes prez? Noooooes.  Do you understand the pitfalls of recall, the complexity of the Wisconsin effort to avoid the Barbie doll becoming gov, instead?)

    Or you are suggesitng that I look to someone at the local level to act as governor?  Huh?  Perhaps some alderperson in Racine could reinstate collective bargaining statewide, and some village president in Lodi could repeal concealed-carry statewide, and some mayor in T'Rivers could replace the lost funding for K12 and higher ed statewide, and maybe recover the nearly a billion in fed funding for the train lines and the health care for the poor and. . . .)

    I have the sense that there is something in your comment that I would want to understand, so please feel free to try again to get through to me.


    Apologies (none / 0) (#165)
    by vicndabx on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 05:37:47 PM EST
    Your post talked about fear as a tactic,"show why the losing the White House is the ultimate danger...." in response to ABG's legitimate concerns about losing the White House and the importance of the executive branch.

    My post links to two articles I found last nite that discussed how the executive branch under Bush handled the financial crisis. The articles reported on what may be limitations placed on the abilities of the Obama administration to deal with, and punish those responsible for the crisis.  In other words, what I felt was a counter to the thinking that this is merely about scare tactics.  Who's in charge matters even when it comes to seemingly small issues.  Your push to get Walker out is but another example.


    Towanda (none / 0) (#150)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:34:05 PM EST
    I am not trying to spin or convince or win friends or anything.

    I think losing the WH to Mitt or Newt is worse than any middle ground policy or concession that Obama could make.

    I don't know how to say it in a way that makes people like me or what have you.

    It just is.  It's not a scare tactic.  I believe it is the truth.

    You twist it into a tactic or a fear campaign.  I am just stating my belief.


    ABG, I'm not twisting (5.00 / 1) (#159)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:53:08 PM EST
    your words when I directly quote them.

    And if you're not trying to accomplish anything here, then why not take your passion for the campaign where it could accomplish something -- and use the time to go work for Obama, since you say you're not working for him here? (and since several commenters have suggested that what you're doing here is having the opposite effect, fighting for the center at a site called TalkLeft).


    Now (5.00 / 2) (#131)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:47:42 PM EST
    you are starting to sound truly desperate. Before it was condescension and head patting and now you've devolved into desperation.

    Do tell what's the advantage of reelecting milquetoast? What's the advantage of reelecting someone who thinks dealing with crazy is a good idea? I Obama is all into this bipartisanship stuff and if you want bipartisanship you are going to have to promote crazy in this day and age.


    I agree that Obama can't pull left (none / 0) (#98)
    by ZtoA on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:14:48 PM EST
    at this point in time. The repubs have already defined him and he has worked hard to secure the middle. He figures he has the black community, and the repubs have been so breathtakingly horrible that the Latino community is his as well. The youth vote will be interesting to watch, but I think he has that too, and turnout will be good. (I expect to see some creative GOTV via texting etc)

    Traditional dems don't like it that the party has significantly moved to the right. I find the whole thing interesting. Obama has bipartisaned out the middle and blurred the lines between traditional opponents. That has in itself generated a lot of anger. Anger on all sides. IMO all he has to do is do nice speeches and otherwise keep quiet and he will be reelected since the repubs are self destructing. But trying to conflate the parties, in a country that is essentially binary in spirit, will generate a lot of anger and that will be dangerous. I would like to see him take a definite liberal position, but I don't think he will, and I don't think he sees any value in it.


    I think (none / 0) (#123)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:00:02 PM EST
    you overstate the simplicity of the binary system.  The issues don't fall down partisan lines for most people.

    Most people want higher taxes on the rich but they also want deficits cut. Most people want to keep Obamacare but they don't want the mandate.  Most people want people to have choice but they are concerned about the government paying for pro-choice programs.  Most people are concerned with civil liberties but thrilled and approved of dropping bombs on bad guys and assassinating Osama.

    If you dropped all of the labels, Obama is probably governing right where 60-65% of the country is on most issues. Now that upsets me at times and I am frustrated by it, but I don't think you call Obama a sell out or closet republican for doing what most of the people who elected him wanted him to do.

    He'd be selling out if he ignored everyone and just did what the left told him to.


    It is the parties (none / 0) (#132)
    by ZtoA on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:50:29 PM EST
    that are binary. And I agree that the parties do not reflect what polls show majorities want. And I'm not calling Obama a closet republican. I'm saying he taking the rhetoric of both parties and actions too. It takes away a clear opposition position for the repubs so to define themselves in opposition they go insane (radicalized, and extreme).

    In this country at this time "dropping all the labels" is simply not possible. For one thing, big media really like the pro-wrestling aspect of politics and tends to ignore substance. Also, how people actually get information has changed. It is now possible to 'believe in' entirely different facts than one's neighbor.

    Personally I disagree with such a deeply bipartisan approach. I wish Obama had played hardball with repubs, not tried to be nice and gain respect instead of cooperation. They are an opposition party - they do not want to cooperate unless they have to. The dem party and not just Obama has this problem. But the dems and Obama have played bipartisan and nice.... so that happened. It has put pressure on fault lines - will be interesting to see what happens.


    Thank the gods (none / 0) (#157)
    by the capstan on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:51:06 PM EST
    I am not 'most people'!

    He had the wind at his back (none / 0) (#100)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:17:51 PM EST
    He could have started with small ideas to pull "left".

    Also, if the "left" has such great ideas, (and again, these are issues that most people in poll after poll agree with), all it would take is someone who, I don't know, could articulate those ideas and present arguments as to why they would be good policy.

    If we only had someone who could speak well to lead the charge.....


    I'm confused (5.00 / 2) (#133)
    by NYShooter on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:57:06 PM EST
    All this talk: "Lurching to the Left, Tacking to the Right, Swinging to the middle," means absolutely nothing unless a policy, or a program, is attached to it.

    For the better part of these past three years Obama's poll rating have been dropping as his attempts to "reach out" were met with clenched fists. But then, starting with his economic speech in Kansas, touting Liberal principles, and through his SOTU speech, loaded with Liberal rhetoric, his poll numbers shot up.

    What am I missing?


    Those numbers are false (none / 0) (#136)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:02:51 PM EST
    Most times after a SOTU, a president goes out to tout his plan and he gets a bounce from it. The bounce is temporary and will settle back down around "normal" in a week or two.

    To try and analyze these numbers means nothing.


    You are missing (none / 0) (#153)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:38:54 PM EST
    The fact that the unemployment number is the key driver of his approval ratings.

    Your (5.00 / 3) (#80)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:36:56 PM EST
    post indicates exactly what is wrong with Obama. He is being led instead of leading. People respond to strong leadership not chasing people who don't even know what they stand for. If you produce good results you are not going to have to run around chasing everybody for their votes. People will vote for you because they like the results. You are assuming that these Independents are all "moderate". That is a fallacy. Independents run the full spectrum of political beliefs.

    Understand math, (none / 0) (#94)
    by KeysDan on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:10:40 PM EST
    but, if you are trying to add, it does not make good sense to subtract.

    Ruffian (1.00 / 0) (#59)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:00:44 PM EST
    " You get no leverage fighting people who believe a superset of what you believe."

    That's exactly why the focus on attacking Obama instead of the folks who believe 0% of what we believe is baffling.

    I am fairly sure that Anne or Edger have spent more time talking about how bad Obama is in the last month than they have Newt, Romney and Santorum combined.

    That's the real issue.  Anyway, no need to stretch the discussion out.  I appreciate your attempts (and Don's and others) to bridge the gap, but there are just two ways of thinking about this stuff and if you fundamentally see Obama as no different than Mitt, we just aren't on the same side.


    The people fighting Obama from the left (5.00 / 2) (#71)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:21:25 PM EST
    are fighting someone who only believes (or at least fights for) a subset of what they believe. It is different, in my mind. They want him to do more, you are asking them to want less.

    I think Obama plays it smarter than you are, actually. He uses libs to say to the right and the middle, 'hey, I've got these guys pressuring me, I can only go so far to the right, and btw look how nice and moderate I am'. The more pressure he gets from the left, the more he can say that. You want to take away all his leverage in the interest of universal love.

    But I agree I don't have time for the Dems = GOP arguments. I just don't believe it. In their heart of hearts Mitt and Obama probably are not that far apart, but Mitt has to speak for the nutters in his party, not for himself.


    But, to add to your last paragraph, (none / 0) (#72)
    by dk on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:25:59 PM EST
    both have to speak for the same corporate sponsors.

    that is true (none / 0) (#75)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:30:07 PM EST
    I will take my corporate sponsor spokesman without the side of climate-change and evolotion denial, thank you very much!

    I guess I just don't see (none / 0) (#79)
    by dk on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:36:44 PM EST
    those as the only choices (though I understand the additional choices I include won't win the 2012 election).

    Lordy, you didn't mention me (5.00 / 3) (#158)
    by sj on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:52:46 PM EST
    but you will only rarely find me talking about Mitt or Newt or any other Republican candidate.  Why?  To me it's a given that they are all Bad. For. The. Nation.  Every last one of them.  

    I'm pretty darn sure that Edger and Anne would both hold a variation of that conviction.  For me to repeat that endlessly is just chatter.  I generally don't have any interest in the horse race part of any political campaign.  Policy, and effects of policy?  Yep.  That I care about.  I know we're going to get cr@p policy from a Republican.  Why say it over and over and over again.  

    Stop whining that some people aren't ragging on Republicans enough.  The Republicans are a lost cause.  Some people are still trying to save the Dems from succumbing to the same base temptations and disease.  Some people think that the Dems may win by becoming like the Republicans.  I think that may be true.  But that would mean that most of the population of this nation would lose.


    Why should TL folk (5.00 / 5) (#162)
    by the capstan on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:54:58 PM EST
    be talking about how bad Mitt or Romney and the rest are?  They are not really our concern till election day.  Leave 'em to the nuts who will vote for one of them.

    Our business is the guy who was thought (not by me) to be a liberal.


    Mitt or (none / 0) (#184)
    by the capstan on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 08:56:57 PM EST
    Gingrich, of course.  (Eyes tend to be blurry; maybe the brain too?)

    a couple questions (5.00 / 2) (#54)
    by ZtoA on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:40:53 PM EST
    First, when you say
    They are a big part of the problem

    What "problem" are you talking about?

    Second, what is it you are trying to do? Change dissatisfied dems minds (like those you rail against)? Or, elicit people who think like you to engage in ridicule against them and therefore win the hearts of those who like to listen to differing points of view?


    I would like (none / 0) (#69)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:19:25 PM EST
    to discuss politics and policies.  That's pretty much it.

    Well then (5.00 / 4) (#161)
    by sj on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:54:40 PM EST
    DO that.  And stop discussing other people.

    sj (none / 0) (#192)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Fri Jan 27, 2012 at 09:56:11 AM EST
    Fine rule.  Apply it consistently and we have no issue.

    What rule? (5.00 / 0) (#198)
    by sj on Fri Jan 27, 2012 at 10:54:25 AM EST
    YOU'RE the one who said YOU wanted to talk politics and policy.  I'm saying if that's what you want, that's what you should do.  Or would do.  

    You can't control what others think or say. You can only control what YOU think or say.  You say you want to talk politics and policy.  So.  Go do that.


    This is some BS (1.00 / 0) (#16)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:37:15 AM EST

    Well, there are people who simply don't care what Obama's policies are. As long as they can get him re-elected, they don't appear to care if they have to lose to "win", or what the effect of that on their country is.


    I don't know, ABG, maybe you are comfortable wearing "WELCOME" tattooed on your forehead, but I'm not going to be anyone's doormat, nor will I willingly enable any candidate or politician to take my vote for granted.

    These are all points made by folks who believe that their way is the only way to impact change.  They also reflect a lack of priorities whatsoever.  

    If there is psycho breaking into your house to murder you and your family, you don't stop at that moment to lecture your friend about leaving the door open when he left, no matter how disappointed you are with the kid for doing so.  You hit the psycho over the head with a bat, call the police and then when the dust settles you give your friend hell about leaving the door open when you asked him to lock it.

    The difference between the warring factions here is that some of us are more concerned about the psychos (Mitt/Newt) about to burst in the house than we are that the friend didn't respect our property.

    I think others would let the psychos chop everyone to pieces while they called up the friend and gave him/her a piece of their mind.


    If a psycho was breaking into my house ... (5.00 / 5) (#135)
    by cymro on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:59:51 PM EST
    ... I wouldn't try to stop him by writing a post on TalkLeft. Posts on TalkLeft will be equally ineffective in stopping Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich in their tracks.

    Indeed, if they ever did read and repeat anything negative that was originally written about them on TalkLeft, it would almost certainly be used to contrast the "correctness" of their right-wing views with the "socialist" views being espoused here. Their argument would also almost certainly include a reference to the name of the site, of course.

    This site is TalkLeft, and the name does mean something. That's why I found this site, and why I started coming here 5 or 6 years ago. So it's very tiresome when every serious attempt to discuss left-wing perspectives is continually greeted (and interrupted) by hectoring from the center.

    So if you really want to attack the Right from the Center, rather than from the Left, why don't you start your own blog? It could be called TalkCenter, since you want so badly to disown the Left? The views you espouse, and you want others to support, would have a natural home there, and you wouldn't have to keep fending off the pesky left-wingers whose views bother you so much.

    I promise not to visit very often.


    All of us are left wing (none / 0) (#155)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:44:05 PM EST
    I don't think people claiming that Obama is a conservative and that we should vote for a third party represent the overwhelming majority of liberals in this country.

    I am fighting to get the discussion back to the "real" left. Not the pie in the sky, I am voting for Cynthia McKinney because doggone it she is as left as it gets" type folks.

    That's not where most liberals are.  I am probably more representative of the thinking of the average liberal than someone like Edger.


    ABG, please stop making straw men. (5.00 / 3) (#166)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 05:38:46 PM EST
    I don't recall any support of a third party getting traction. Not only that, but when was the last time Cynthia McKinney came up on this site before you just mentioned her?

    As for self-representing yourself as a liberal, you don't seem to talk the talk. If you're working for the wall street crowd, then you're not walking the walk, either.

    As Bill Cosby said in his great routine: "Who made you the Great Jello Sheriff?"


    simply not true: (5.00 / 1) (#171)
    by ZtoA on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 06:28:12 PM EST
    All of us are left wing

    I think you are right in that you have more average political views than some here. But so what? The voices at the margins are extremely important. After all, this is a criminal defense site. I think that ridiculing, shaming, or diminishing non main stream views is unhealthy and a very bad political goal.


    Your definitions of the "real" left ... (5.00 / 5) (#183)
    by cymro on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 08:51:31 PM EST
    ... and of the term "liberal" seem to have been invented by you to justify your own perspective on the world. They do not accord with mine.

    I am well aware that political liberalism takes different forms in different countries, and that in the US "the primary use of the term liberal is at some variance with European and worldwide usage" [Wikipedia].

    But I don't believe that justifies redefining the meanings of "Left" and Right" because they describe a naturally occurring spectrum of political thought. There's a good definition of Leftist thought in the quotation by Barry Clark in the introduction to this Wikipedia article.

    To explain my own viewpoint, I point you to a discussion I had with Jim in 2005--see this post and this follow-up post. And since then, the Democratic Party has moved even further to the right.

    But although the Democratic Party keeps moving to the right, the political spectrum does not move. Which means that there are more and more people--those to the left of the positions staked out by the Democratic Party--whose views are no longer being represented by either Party.

    It is this abandonment that causes posters like Anne and Edger to write as they do. Their views are perfectly valid, and you should not be trying to silence them. As I see it, you are not "fighting to get the discussion back to the 'real' left," you are fighting to redefine the meaning of "real left," by repositioning it in the center of the political spectrum.

    But the left can never be in the center, that's a logical contradiction. So why not stop your campaign, accept that there will always be diverse points of view expressed here, and spare us your angst-ridden attempts to herd us all like sheep into your confining centrist pen. It has not worked for you, and by now I would think that you could conclude (rightly) that it will never work. So you are just wasting your time and a lot of space on this blog. Why?


    Brilliant, again, cymro. (none / 0) (#185)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 09:47:09 PM EST
    To which I would add only that all major parties are granfalloons, a Vonnegut term for a group of people who find themselves in a group only owing to circumstances and not alike in all things, even dissimilar in many things.

    Aka the "big tent" model of a major party as a constantly shifting coalition of many people with many different causes, at many different priority levels -- people brought together by some of those causes at times but split apart by differing on those causes at other times.

    That's TL.  A granfalloon of sorts, a "big tent" of sorts, but I see the site and the left as more like a campground of lots of tents -- some three-ring-circus size tents for some causes, some pup tents for other causes -- which means that we agree on some things but not on other things.  We agree with Obama on some things but not on other things, but if we disagree on some things or even many things, that does not mean that we're moving to the other campground.

    Of course, if our campground gets overrun by obnoxious sorts who want us all to be in lockstep, or want all of us to move into some great big tent to pretend we're all alike, we may just have to pack up our tents for a while.  

    We'll be back for the big campfire for a day.  Or we'll say to h*ll with this, and we're sitting out the campfire this time, 'til the idiots stop bugging us with all this kumbaya singalong cr*p.  


    Thank you Towanda (5.00 / 1) (#191)
    by cymro on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:35:55 PM EST
    I like your camping analogy. And it's good to see that we CAN still agree, when we're not discussing Penn State. I guess we're just going to have to agree to disagree on that topic. An illustration of the campground model of TL, right?  

    See you at the campfire ;-)


    I love Spotify (none / 0) (#18)
    by Dr Molly on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:39:39 AM EST
    Reliving all my favorite music makes my workday go better.

    I've seen that my daughter uses this (none / 0) (#26)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:46:58 AM EST
    on Facebook, keep telling myself I'm going to try it.

    It's better than Pandora IMO (none / 0) (#31)
    by Dr Molly on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:55:47 AM EST
    Republican Delegate Totals So Far (none / 0) (#30)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:54:19 AM EST
    Newt 23
    Mitt 19
    The Mad Dog 13
    Paul 3

    1144 delegates needed to win nomination; 2226 still up for grabs.

    Florida is worth 50, on the 31st
    Texas 155 on 04/03
    California 172 06/05

    And if that didn't totally kill your buzz, the last primary is June 26th in Utah...


    Thanks! I looked for this (none / 0) (#33)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:01:15 PM EST
    sort of tally a few days ago and did not find as useful a site.  Bookmarking.

    seems to be a lot of this going around lately. (none / 0) (#34)
    by cpinva on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:03:37 PM EST
    TalkLeft was down this morning, our hosting company had issues.

    i've had problems with sites, both personal & at work, for the past few days. i tell you, the black helicopters are just beyond the horizon!

    I suspect (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:12:03 PM EST
    I suspect it's weather related....

    oh sure, (none / 0) (#122)
    by cpinva on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:58:39 PM EST
    you say that now!

    I suspect it's weather related....

    Ditto. (n/t) (none / 0) (#39)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:12:51 PM EST
    Email from Annette Dickerson at CCR (none / 0) (#35)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:04:35 PM EST
    a few minutes ago...

    Dear CCR Supporter,

    Sign the petition to the White House calling for President Obama to keep his promise to close Guantánamo. If we reach 25,000 signatures by February 6, the administration has committed to respond to the petition.

    It's Three Years Since President Obama Promised To Close Guantánamo

    Perfect Example (none / 0) (#38)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:12:19 PM EST
    1. Obama needs designated funding to close gitmo.

    2. Obama needs a place to send the prisoners to close Gitmo.

    3. Obama needs a federal court order or a waiver signed by Panetta to close Gitmo.  

    He needs all 3 but let's just take the first two, which are completely beyond his control.  What does Obama do to make those obstacles magically disappear again?

    You are petitioning him to do the impossible, and then [gasp] when he doesn't, you are using that to claim that we shouldn't vote for him.

    Let's just skip some steps because Obama is completely unable to close Gitmo and just tell everyone that Mitt would be better for the detainees chances of getting out.

    That's where your logic ends if you are consistent.


    The answer is (5.00 / 2) (#41)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:15:11 PM EST
    that he needs to try.  

    I understand the obstacles.


    'designated funding' (5.00 / 2) (#167)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 05:45:26 PM EST
    Hmmm, before he let this ball roll too far away, he, as the CIC, could have moved all of the detainees to wherever he wanted to move them.

    He did not. Now there are congressional people who would do anything to stop such moves.  

    For want of a shoe... Obama had the horse with the shoe, the cavalry, and everything else. Yet he failed to act.

    I'm sure you have some boilerplate denial.  An executive order issued in January 2009 could have taken care of this. Not any more, because the opportunity turned into unity-pony-making.

    I keep trying to find the tough decision or decisions by Obama, the type that regular people have to make. The kind of decisions that come with incomplete information, and questionable outcomes.

    I haven't seen any decisions made like this. Instead, the decision-time has been kicked down the road, until there was no need for a decision. So we went from knee-high in the big muddy to waist high, because no direction changed.


    Have you seen "Artist"? Think (5.00 / 2) (#168)
    by oculus on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 05:53:34 PM EST

    Huh? (n/t) (none / 0) (#175)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 07:42:15 PM EST
    Jeff was (none / 0) (#178)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 07:46:38 PM EST
    replying to abg (same comment you replied to)

    Which is why (5.00 / 2) (#43)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:20:34 PM EST
    It perfectly illustrates that he was in over his head when he ran in the first place. When you make a promise like that - one that your supporters will actually expect you to keep - you should make d@mn well and good that you know what the he11 you are talking about.

    That promise right there is the reason I knew I couldn't vote for him.  Because he had no clue.


    What do (none / 0) (#46)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:26:15 PM EST
    McCain, Hillary Clinton and Obama have in common:

    Answer: The all said they would close Gitmo during their campaigns.

    If that is your take, you should have just stayed at home because you couldn't vote for anyone.

    "Like Obama and Clinton, McCain has called for closing Guantanamo Bay, and bringing detainees to prisons inside the United States, where their treatment and adjudication can be more closely monitored."

    http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2008/05/11/candidates_hold_stances_on_guantanamo/?page=fu ll

    Memories are short.


    Yes, your memory definitely IS short (5.00 / 4) (#49)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:28:22 PM EST
    Obama was the only one who definitively said he would "close Guantanamo within a year of taking office."

    McCain and Hillary - from your article, said it should be shut down.

    I know you don't do nuance, but that's pretty easy.


    sorry about the link (none / 0) (#47)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:26:36 PM EST
    I was thinking about the power of the SOTU (5.00 / 4) (#45)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 12:22:40 PM EST
    address this morning. I disagree with those that say that talk with no results is worthless. 'Talking a good game' helps to spread the word and the ideas that others can get behind. If Obama would keep up rhetoric of these things even though he can't get them done with this congress, he would  hasten the day when perhaps some other POTUS and Congress CAN get them done.   I don't think it is wasted effort.

    The talk is only effective in spreading (5.00 / 1) (#76)
    by caseyOR on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:31:26 PM EST
    the word and hastening the day if Obama does not then turn around and capitulate to the Republicans on just about everything. Even if he cannot get done everything he makes a speech about, he must be seen to be, at the very least, trying to get those things done.

    Instead we have a president who says one thing and consistently does another. And in doing so he reinforces the idea that politicians are liars and that government is incapable of doing anything that helps people.

    As we have seen with a number of voters who were excited in 2008 to vote for Obama, and some who were not excited but voted for him and hoped for the best, this saying one thing and doing another makes voters give up on the whole thing.

    Talk is not enough.


    Question: (5.00 / 5) (#141)
    by NYShooter on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:11:08 PM EST
    What did LBJ and R.Reagan have in common? Answer: The opposition Party in both cases feared the President. Result: Those Presidents got most of their major legislation passed.

    Question: What did George Bush and Bill Clinton have in common: Answer: Both had opposion majorities in Congress. Result: Each of those Presidents got most of their policies implemented.

    Conclusion: It takes a Leader in the White House if you want effective Government. (Note I didn't say "good" government, just "effective" government.)

    Lesson to be learned: A good Leader, especially with the public's support, can get done what he wants to get done. Anything else is bull spit excuses.


    Right, but... give the guy a break, will you? (5.00 / 3) (#148)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:24:47 PM EST
    He's not a king or a miracle worker.

    You see, Obama can't be a "good Leader" unless Boehner and the republicans let him be a good Leader.

    Or unless he has a 100% approval rating first, and is not stressed thinking about the 2012 election.

    Or until his party controls the house and senate again like they did until the 2010 midterms when he was unable to convince enough people that his batsh*t crazy drive for bipartisanship with batsh*t crazy republicans was the only way to go.

    Or something... ;-)


    Personalities (none / 0) (#154)
    by vicndabx on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:43:16 PM EST
    Is that the belief?  The context in which they pushed to implement those policies had nothing to do with it?

    Everyone was just scared of them and that's how they got stuff done?

    Every project you've worked on finished on time and on budget eh?  Particularly those that require input from others.....

    I seem to remember a quite vocal opposition to Reagan.  The rest of the country just happened to be in me, me, me mode in the early 80's.  That was why he was as "effective" as you say.


    Thank you; you made my point (none / 0) (#170)
    by NYShooter on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 06:10:37 PM EST

    Yes, the Commander in Chief is Hapless... (5.00 / 2) (#67)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:18:55 PM EST
    ...when it comes to moving military prisoners.

    But good point, one more reason I will not vote for him.

    Those obstacles exist because he asked permission, someone no ohter president has eve done.  

    But that multi-dimential chess game he plays wasn't quit good enough to know what would happen in this case, please.

    Only someone who did not want to move these people would have asked permission from Congress.  And fools like yourself use it to exonerate him, so maybe it did work.


    To be fair (none / 0) (#77)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:32:48 PM EST
    It really wouldn't have been as easy as that.  There were (and still are) lots of issues that make it impossible to just snap your fingers and it would happen.

    But that was the whole problem with his statement in the first place.  He thought he was going to be the King of Siam and say, "Let it be written.  Let it be done."

    Pure naïveté.


    Gimme a Break (5.00 / 1) (#82)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:49:26 PM EST
    He can still move them, that was never the issue, he just doesn't have the funding.  I can not think of another case in which the president asked for funding to do anything beyond a large military action.

    Either way, it's a losing proposition, either he spoke out of turn, he is ineffectual in executing a pretty basic move, or worse, he had no intentions of moving them in the first place, which is where I would place my bet.

    But good to see JB coming to Obama's defense...


    I wouldn't say (5.00 / 3) (#144)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:20:07 PM EST
    That calling Obama naive is "coming to his defense."

    But it might make you a (5.00 / 4) (#169)
    by BTAL on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 06:01:51 PM EST
    Mitt loving Republican...  

    Or so the story goes.  ;-)


    Egads! (5.00 / 1) (#172)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 06:46:05 PM EST
    My cover has been blown!

    Ummm, jbindc (none / 0) (#174)
    by Zorba on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 07:02:59 PM EST
    I don't really want to pick on a minor point (well, okay, maybe I do), but although Yul Brynner starred in both The King and I as the King of Siam, and The Ten Commandments as Pharaoh Rameses II, it was the Pharaoh that said "So let it be written.  So let it be done."  Right actor, wrong film.     ;-)

    d@mn (none / 0) (#176)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 07:44:55 PM EST
    I always get that line confused.

    LOL! (none / 0) (#181)
    by Zorba on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 08:15:18 PM EST
    Ah, well- king, pharaoh, very similar.

    So (none / 0) (#193)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Fri Jan 27, 2012 at 10:00:39 AM EST
    The issue isn't that Obama hasn't closed Gitmo by himself because he can't do that.

    The issue is that he said he'd do it in a certain amount of time and hasn't.

    Despite the fact that he can't.

    You see why this is a little frustrating.

    I guess I'd concede, yes, Obama should not have promised to do something he didn't have the power to do.


    Awwwww (5.00 / 1) (#195)
    by jbindc on Fri Jan 27, 2012 at 10:04:12 AM EST
    If he's so weak and helpless, why re-elect him?

    I understand that presidentin' is HARD.


    So, in other words, (5.00 / 2) (#145)
    by lentinel on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:20:30 PM EST
    when Obama said "repeatedly" that he'd close Gitmo, (LINK)
    he didn't know what the fk he was talking about.

    OK (none / 0) (#194)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Fri Jan 27, 2012 at 10:01:35 AM EST
    Obama was overly optimistic and promised something he later found he was powerless to deliver.

    I don't know if that charge is quite as terrible as you seem to think it is.


    I think the phrase you're looking for is (5.00 / 2) (#196)
    by jbindc on Fri Jan 27, 2012 at 10:07:34 AM EST
    "naive" or better yet, "pulling it out of his a$$" instead of "overly optimistic."

    That's silly (none / 0) (#197)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Fri Jan 27, 2012 at 10:30:39 AM EST
    Every politician ever in the history of forever believes that they will be able to do more than they can actually do.

    Name a president and I will give you a list of things he thought he could do but couldn't.

    Pretending that this particular elected official is any different makes no sense.

    Bold prediction: someone will make a promise in the 2012 election and not have the ability to make it happen.

    Even more bold prediction: it will happen in 2016 and 2020 and 2024 and . . .


    If what (5.00 / 1) (#200)
    by lentinel on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 03:43:46 AM EST
    you say is true, Mr. Guy, what is the point of listening to these azzholes?

    Romney Income Insanity (none / 0) (#78)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:36:38 PM EST

    Put your income in and it will tell you how long it takes Mitt to make that much, and how long it will take you to make what Mitt makes.

    And he's on the low end of the millionaires club, wonder what those numbers would be for someone like Gates or the Walton family.  No human is worth that many times another IMO.

    LAT headline about "richest" man (none / 0) (#83)
    by oculus on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:51:50 PM EST
    in LA. Never heard of him. But he is amenable to helping buy the Dodgers.

    I remember reading a few years ago (none / 0) (#89)
    by jbindc on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:01:36 PM EST
    That it wouldn't be worth Bill Gates' time to bend over and pick (I think) $100 bill off the sidewalk because, for the time it would take him to do that, he made so much more.

    Also something like he would max out his yearly 401(k) contributions by one minute after midnight on January 1.


    Isn't it disconcerting (none / 0) (#84)
    by oculus on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 01:54:19 PM EST
    todisconcerting to hear the GOP candidates making the same criticisms of Pres. Obsma we read here often?

    no (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by The Addams Family on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:19:17 PM EST
    because the GOP candidates will find any way they can to criticize Obama & will say anything to get elected

    business as usual


    For the most part... (5.00 / 1) (#102)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:20:06 PM EST
    the criticisms are quite different, imo.  Much more legit criticism here on TL vs. the GOP primary trail.  

    Newtie & Mittens are criticizing a president who sounds half decent, but sadly does not exist outside of Rush Limbaugh's imagination.


    That he is a Socialist? (none / 0) (#91)
    by MKS on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:05:00 PM EST
    That he's made these promises (none / 0) (#93)
    by oculus on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 02:07:39 PM EST
    b/4 and could have fulfilled them during his first 2 years as Pres.  

    That the mean Republicans... (none / 0) (#138)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:05:27 PM EST
     ...treat him badly and/or make him an ineffectual figure head ?

    Bang Zoom to the Moon! (none / 0) (#125)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:05:51 PM EST
    Did y'all miss this one or did we already make fun and I missed it?

    Newt promises a moon colony in 8 years.

    Pick your punchline...

    Newt's feeling lonely (none / 0) (#127)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:13:38 PM EST
    and he wants company?

    I was thinking... (5.00 / 1) (#130)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:38:06 PM EST
    a colony for all his ex-wives, by 2020 who knows how many. Or maybe an intergalactic swingers club.

    Or a SuperDuperMax prison colony to finally replace Gitmo.


    Maybe we could (none / 0) (#139)
    by Edger on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:06:38 PM EST
    put Capitol Hill and the White House up there? They wouldn't be anymore out of touch and feeling above everyone else than they are now, after all. ;-)

    We have the comment of the day! (none / 0) (#177)
    by Towanda on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 07:46:30 PM EST
    You go, kdog.

    To the moon, Alice, er..Callista. (none / 0) (#129)
    by KeysDan on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 03:35:51 PM EST
    The only chance for Newt to get away, he is kept closer to Callista than Chang was to Eng.

    He needs a Place for Wives... (none / 0) (#140)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:09:11 PM EST
    ...cuatro and sinco ?

    cinco (none / 0) (#143)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 04:19:25 PM EST
    Ah yes, Newt visits the Space Coast (none / 0) (#189)
    by ruffian on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 10:12:50 PM EST
    Pandering to the NASA crowd here in Florida.

    Maybe post tomorrow? (none / 0) (#190)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Thu Jan 26, 2012 at 11:06:00 PM EST
    OK, Mongo.

    Surfer/journalist kidnapped in Somalia. (none / 0) (#199)
    by oculus on Fri Jan 27, 2012 at 01:38:04 PM EST
    Kidnappee is riding to airport, kidnappers are in SUVs.  Somali pirates kidnap Manhattan Beach surfing, travel journalist

    No pirate ship involved.