Wednesday Night Open Thread

Donald Trump has announced he will disclose his preference for the Republican candidate for President tomorrow at 12:30 pm. If his candidate wins the nomination, he won't run as a third party candidate. Otherwise, who knows. But even if he decides to run, he reminds everyone he can't begin campaigning until May, when the newest Celebrity Apprentice finishes airing.

[Update: Trump endorsed Romney. The Atlanta Journal Constitution was wrong but it's erased the story, replacing the link that follows with one that says he's endorsing Romney.] Apparently, he's endorsing Newt Gingrich. Could it be because Romney wouldn't agree to participate in the debate Trump planned on moderating? Gingrich did agree to participate.

On a more interesting note, who will replace Nicole Sherzinger and Paula Abdul on the next X-Factor? Axing them and host Steve Jones was a good decision by Simon Cowell. Meanwhile, American Idol's ratings this season have slumped, and The Voice begins its new season right after the Superbowl.

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

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  • Komen vs. Planned Parenthood (5.00 / 8) (#2)
    by caseyOR on Wed Feb 01, 2012 at 09:10:05 PM EST
    I'm moving this from the last Open thread.

    Reactions to the Susan G. Komen Foundation's decision to stop giving Planned Parenthood grant money to provide breast cancer screenings have been very negative here. And I gather from watching the national news that Komen is getting quite a bit of blowback for putting politics ahead of women's health.

    The local Komen chapter, worried that a city that hosts one of the biggest Race for the Cure events in the country is reacting so negatively to the Planned Parenthood decision, is asking people not to judge the local by the actions of the national Komen office. Good luck with that.

    I have no sympathy for Komen. They chose to side with a political witch hunt. Cliff Stearns, a whacko Republican congressman from Florida, has launched this investigation. What else has Stearns done? According to Charlie Pierce

    Stearns is the guy who added to the Zadroga bill, which provided for federal relief to the first responders who worked on the pile at Ground Zero in New York, the ludicrous requirement that the names of all applicants for such relief first be checked against all terrorist watch-list. He also once attacked PBS because the South African version of Sesame Street introduced a character who was HIV-positive.

    Komen's recently hired vice-prsident for public policy, anti-abortion zealot Karen Handel, also seems to have played a part in this decision.

    Komen will never see another penny of my money. Enough with sacrificing women's health care on the altar of politics.

    "Komen will never see another penny..." (5.00 / 3) (#4)
    by desertswine on Wed Feb 01, 2012 at 09:43:52 PM EST
    Nor mine. And I am a contributor. Or rather, I was. I am nothing but angry now.

    komen (5.00 / 4) (#7)
    by womanwarrior on Wed Feb 01, 2012 at 11:00:16 PM EST
    I am with you on that.  Apparently the denver affiliate may not be going with the national, from what I hear.  But Komen has really put itself in a big hole with all the women I know.

    PP got $650,000 (none / 0) (#12)
    by jbindc on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 07:38:27 AM EST
    in dontaions in just 24 hours.

    Donors reacting to the Susan G. Komen Foundation's decision to cut off funding to Planned Parenthood contributed $650,000 in 24 hours, nearly enough to replace last year's Komen funding, Planned Parenthood executives said Wednesday.

    The organization had raised more than $400,000 from more than 6,000 online donors as of Wednesday afternoon, compared with the 100 to 200 donations it receives on an average day, said Tait Sye, a spokesman for the Planned Parenthood Federation of America. He said donations were still coming in.

    The group also launched a Breast Health Emergency Fund to ensure funding to affiliates that will lose their Komen grants. That fund received a $250,000 gift from the family foundation of Dallas philanthropist Lee Fikes and his wife, Amy.

    Karen's excuse, if I understand her (none / 0) (#16)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 09:17:54 AM EST
    statement, is that the by-laws prevent money being given to any organization under investigation.

    Guess the board couldn't meet and change the by-laws to exempt PP.


    and that is sarcasm in case anyone misunderstands (none / 0) (#17)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 09:19:25 AM EST
    Not if their goal was to institute (none / 0) (#23)
    by Anne on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 10:17:07 AM EST
    a standard they already knew Planned Parenthood wouldn't be able to meet...

    Or (none / 0) (#28)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 02:14:27 PM EST
    They may have wanted to avoid creating that brand new "investigation" policy seemingly just in time to boot Planned Parenthood.

    Some are saying their biggest communications blunder (and they've been making some huge ones) is in not admitting that they're taking a an anti-choice turn...because they are.  It defies any attempt at intellectual honesty to say that they aren't.


    "Ya gotta' love (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by fishcamp on Wed Feb 01, 2012 at 09:59:30 PM EST
    that Snoop Dog is endorsing Ron Paul...

    I think everyone's busy tomorrow (none / 0) (#1)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 01, 2012 at 08:45:48 PM EST
    at 12:30.  I know I am, I have a secret hot date with someone who has the initials PBJ.

    Newt? (none / 0) (#3)
    by Addison on Wed Feb 01, 2012 at 09:23:43 PM EST
    I was sure he'd go with Romney. He's waited this long, why endorse Newt now? Newt Gingrich isn't going to win, and so I have no idea why Trump is bothering with an endorsement of a loser. Just dilutes his brand, such as it is. Oh well. I won't try to get in his way.

    X Factor Idol (none / 0) (#6)
    by diogenes on Wed Feb 01, 2012 at 10:48:14 PM EST
    Too many competing shows splitting the pie.  Simon should go back to American Idol and axe X Factor.

    I think X Factor is (none / 0) (#8)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Feb 01, 2012 at 11:39:44 PM EST
    better than American Idol. AI so far this season is a total dud, but for Steven Tyler and JLO, I wouldn't even make it through the hour.

    The performers on X-Factor and the Voice seem a lot more talented than those on American Idol and the production numbers are better. AI has gotten old and tired.


    Then reverse the order (none / 0) (#9)
    by diogenes on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 07:12:09 AM EST
    Have X factor take over Idol, maybe retaining Ryan Seacrest and one or two judges but keeping the X factor format.

    Actually endorsement for Romney (none / 0) (#10)
    by diogenes on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 07:13:27 AM EST
    Most people view an endorsement by Donald Trump as a negative, so Romney wins by this.

    And, more importantly (none / 0) (#11)
    by jbindc on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 07:36:14 AM EST
    There appears to be a growing Romney-Paul alliance.

    Donald Trump has no voting constituency.  Ron Paul does. This is far more important than Mr. Bad Hair's announcement.  Put this stunt right up there with the Lebron James Cleveland-Miami decision special.


    they would be total hypocrits (none / 0) (#14)
    by CST on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 08:47:18 AM EST
    "I will insist on a military so powerful no one would ever think of challenging it." - Mitt Romney"

    stolen from Edgar.

    Isn't that basically the antithesis of Ron Paul's campaign?  Even if Paul does endorse Romney, I don't necessarily see the crowds following.  They seem like true believers.  Romney isn't even trying to fake it.


    They will follow (none / 0) (#15)
    by jbindc on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 09:11:39 AM EST
    If they think they can win.

    Paul followers aren't going to vote for Obama, so yes, I can see them with Romney.

    You know the old saying - "Politics makes syrange bedfellows."


    Not so sure (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 09:23:51 AM EST
    my exposure to Paul supporters via the Tea Party says they really are true believers and many will just set on  their hands or do a protest write in vote.

    What the Repubs need is a strong Green Party candidate to emerge.


    I honestly think (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by CST on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 09:50:30 AM EST
    Paul followers are more likely to support Obama than Romney.  Although I don't see them coming out for Obama either.

    I know some of these people, it's not just about winning or they wouldn't be supporting Ron Paul to begin with.


    I'd bet... (none / 0) (#24)
    by kdog on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 10:33:27 AM EST
    the lions share of Paul's supporters vote for Gary Johnson or another third party/independent option.

    I don't see them going for Romney or Obama...they aren't a "lesser evil" voting bunch...too idealistic.


    pentagon budget "cuts" (none / 0) (#13)
    by Edger on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 08:20:52 AM EST
    "I will insist on a military so powerful no one would ever think of challenging it." -- Mitt (Barack) Romney

    You are now the proud owners of the most expensive military ever seen, plus coming increases that will be presented as "cuts."

    When the Supercommittee failed, automatic federal budget cuts were to kick in -- half to things we need and half to the bloated military. The military cuts would take us back to 2004 spending. We seem to have survived 2004 and the years preceding it OK.

    The Pentagon claims to be making other cuts already, but they are "cuts" to dream budgets resulting in actual budget increases -- and that's not even counting increased war spending through other departments.

    -- A Crazy Republican Attack That Obama Himself Agrees With

    Edger, you can argue that a military has two (none / 0) (#19)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 09:34:08 AM EST

    1. Respond after we are attacked.

    2. Ward off attacks by various means.

    A weak military and a weak foreign policy does invite attacks. People don't attack the biggest kid on the playground. (A little simplistic but it does make a point.)

    A strong military wards off attacks. See mutually assured destruction - MAD - from the Cold War.

    Now, if you want to argue that we are not likely to be attacked by actual countries so we don't need a "strong military" I would counter with, see Iran's desire for a nuke, etc.

    If you want to argue that we are likely to be attacked by asymmetrical forces I agree. But I add that the need for one does not eliminate the need for the other.  


    You ARE smarter than that (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by Edger on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 09:53:50 AM EST
    comment makes you appear, yes?

    As I thought, you haven't thought your (none / 0) (#29)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 09:03:09 PM EST
    position through. Perhaps you want to define it?

    Unemployment (none / 0) (#22)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 10:07:31 AM EST
    Good news continues:

    "One day ahead of the government's monthly jobs report, the Department of Labor said this morning that initial claims for unemployment benefits fell to a seasonally adjusted 367,000 for the week ending Jan. 28,, a decrease of 12,000 from the previous week's revised figure. The four-week moving average, which analysts prefer because it flattens volatility, fell to 375,750. Claims have now been under 400,000 for eight of the past 10 weeks."

    If we are below 400,000 we are likely adding jobs in a real way.

    Short answer: No (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by BTAL on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 10:49:23 AM EST
    We're flat-lining.

    Disagree (none / 0) (#26)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 11:13:28 AM EST
    That's the second-lowest level for the four-week average since June 2008.

    The unemployment number will remain where it is when the number comes out tomorrow, but we are likely to be on the low side of 8.5% instead of the high side, with February being the next time the percentage goes down a click.

    Could be wrong but that's my prediction.


    Even following your prediction (none / 0) (#27)
    by BTAL on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 12:13:06 PM EST
    coupled with the recent trend, we will be hard pressed to reach that promised 8% level before the election.

    That 8% promise will become a millstone.