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March 07, 2011 04:46 PM UTC

Monday Open Thread

  • by: Colorado Pols

However many holy words you read,

However many you speak,

What good will they do you If you do not act on upon them?

–Gautama Buddha


42 thoughts on “Monday Open Thread

    1. Big Picture. Look at it.

      Or maybe elections have consequences. I hope everyone I send it to is super happy with their vote.

      Before I do: Where’dya gettit?

    2. This is the issue of our times.  As much as the Repugs want to focus exclusively on spending cuts, it’s the revenue side of the equation that needs the glare of publicity. I think tax rates are the lowest since the 1950’s, yet Repugs won’t rest until the rates are literally zero for the wealthy. (see estate taxes)

      And, you’re right about surrendering.  My biggest disappointment with President Obama and the Dems was the cave-in on the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy.  Calling the extension of unemployment benefits along with the extension of the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy an example of “sacrifice” by both sides was the most dishonest statement ever uttered by Mr. Obama.

      The public needs to be educated about the facts, just like MADCO did last Friday re: wealth disparity in this country.  

      Keep up the good work.

      1. Your last post, in its entirety, was:

        Unwitting Birther-Truther Abercrombie wittingly demonstrates

        solidarity with careless Wisconsin union boss alliance

        Seriously, I never thought your “Obama’s taxes bill jobs, here’s a picture of him with Bennet” and “Here’s a picture of Chris Christie, he’s my tax-cutting teddy bear” posts would look logical in comparison to anything.

  1. Broke Unless You Count the $67 Billion Pension Fund . . .

    Wisconsin’s pension program could save another $195 million annually just by cutting out its Wall Street investment managers and managing the funds in-house.That’s what he says, but according to Wisconsin’s 2010 CAFR (Comprehensive Annual Financial Report) [pdf], the state has $67 billion in pension and other employee benefit trust funds, invested mainly in stocks and debt securities drawing a modest return.

    A recent study by the Pew Center for the States showed that Wisconsin’s pension fund is almost fully funded, meaning it can meet its commitments for years to come without drawing on outside sources. It requires a contribution of only $645 million annually to meet pension payouts. Zach Carter, writing in the Huffington Post, notes that the pension program could save another $195 million annually just by cutting out its Wall Street investment managers and managing the funds in-house.

    What are we doing here in CO with the management of public employees pension funds?

  2. …I’ll start with the goofy blog picture thingie:

    March is Women’s History Month and after browsing stories of the fearless women who’ve paved their own path, I couldn’t help but think of a magnet my mom brought me that said, “Well behaved women rarely make history.” Some would argue women who have served or are currently serving in the military have taken a gamble, but I say we are undoubtedly history makers.

    In honor of those who have served before me, with me, and those who have served after me, I say we celebrate our accomplishments. In doing so, we’re planning to create a Flickr photo set dedicated to female Veterans. So here is what I need from you-photographs from where you served along with descriptions of the photos. Your photographs should be accompanied with your name, branch of service, and a sentence about what you’re doing now. Please send all information to and we’ll compile the photos and publish them in the next week or so.

    Pam, Wanda, and the rest of our fine female bloggers on Pols, here’s your chance!

        1. I have a granddaughter that is going to love having one arrive with her birthday gift (she’s ex-military) and a daughter whose going to love it for all the right reasons.

    1. Is the book “Love my Rifle More Than You”. Written by a woman who served with a combat platoon in Iraq as an Arabic translator. She was “attached” as she could not be permanently in a combat platoon.

      Really well written and interesting.

  3. …then you should probably ask the Koch brothers for a gig…soon:

    In what may be the result of one of the great political miscalculations of our time, Scott Walker’s popularity in his home state is fast going down the tubes.

    A Rasmussen poll out today reveals that almost 60% of likely Wisconsin voters now disapprove of their aggressive governor’s performance, with 48% strongly disapproving.

    While these numbers are clearly indicators of a strategy gone horribly wrong, there are some additional findings in the poll that I suspect deserve even greater attention.

    It turns out that the state’s public school teachers are very popular with their fellow Badgers. With 77% of those polled holding a high opinion of their educators, it is not particularly surprising that only 32% among households with children in the public school system approve of the governor’s performance. Sixty-seven percent (67%) disapprove, including 54% who strongly disapprove.

    Can anyone imagine a politician succeeding with numbers like this among people who have kids?

      1. I think the latest spate of recall efforts in Wisconsin, Ohio and now in Arizona is a valuable messaging tool for keeping wacko rightie negatives in the news cycle and making dents in GOP message hegemony.  Sure the Gov isn’t going to be successfully recalled but a lot more of Arizona’s large chunk of senior retirees are going to be made more aware of her disturbing death panel policies for future reference and prior to the 2012 elections. I’m all for the new recall strategy.

  4. Although the refrain has been that no contamination is occurring, can’t be proven, it’s all biogenic, etc. etc. COGCC is apparently recognizing some problems–will this change in regulation be readily accepted by the companies?  Or will we again hear that the the world will end if companies can’t continue their shoddy ways?

    Colo. considers new cementing rules for gas wells

  5. The Shuttle Discovery mission was extended again.

    If the skies will cooperate, tonight will present a unique opportunity to watch a double flyby of the Space Station and Shuttle Discovery.

    This, from

    DOUBLE FLYBY ALERT: This morning, March 7th, space shuttle Discovery undocked from the International Space Station. This sets the stage for a spectacular series of double flyby sighting opportunities. The station and shuttle will be flying over parts of the United States and Europe tonight and tomorrow, appearing in the night sky as a closely-spaced pair of bright lights. This is also a last chance to see Discovery in flight, because the orbiter will be retired after landing in Florida on Wednesday, March 9th.

    In addition to, ISS and Shuttle pass data are available at:

    Just enter your zip code.

    Tonight’s pass promises to be a decent one, at 35 degrees elevation in Grand Junction.  If only the skies will clear.

      1. Knowing when something is going to happen is 100 percent within your control.

        Clouds are 100 percent out of your control.

        You can only control what you can control.

        I’ve missed a lot of shit because of the clouds.  I’ve missed little out of ignorance.  That doesn’t mean that I’ve missed little.

  6. ..they don’t have time to allow a House resolution honoring the last survivor of WWI. Because that would interfere with their busy agenda of demonizing a religious group so they can pimp it out on fundraising letters.

    Last U.S. WWI vet’s daughter urges Capitol honor

    Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-West Virginia, had introduced a resolution in the Senate that would authorize the use of the Capitol to honor Frank Buckles. And Republican Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, who represents Buckles’ West Virginia district, also introduced legislation last year to allow the nation’s last “Doughboy” to lie in honor in the Rotunda upon his death.

    But on Thursday, Rockefeller released a statement expressing disappointment that the legislation had been blocked by House Speaker John Boehner.

    “This is a big disappointment and a surprising decision by the Speaker,” Rockefeller said in the statement. “Surely, Speaker Boehner can agree that the Congress should pause for a moment to pay its respects to Mr. Buckles and all our World War I veterans.”

        1. …You only have to support sending them away to die in action. You don’t have to support them when they’re lucky enough to die peacefully at home after a long life of service.

    1. mention why not?  

      I am just speculating here, but is the honor disproportionate to that which other veterans have received?  

      Is it appropriate to do so just because he’s the last?  I don’t even think Sgt. York lay in honor in the Rotunda.  There have doubtlessly been scores of very distinguished veterans who have died in the last 10, 20, 30 years but I can’t think of any who were honored similarly.

      Maybe they should have been.  I have relatives buried all over the country in veteran cemetaries and proudly support the veteran’s cause.  I don’t know what the answer is, but there are likely reasonable arguments on both sides.

      1. Not only was Mr Buckles the last surviving WWI vet, he was a POW during WWII who survived three years of internment by the Japanese.

        More importantly, he’s been a big advocate for the creation of a WWI memorial…something I wish the DAV would kick in for instead of the goofy “disabled for life” memorial thing they backed all these years.

        To me, this brave and honorable man deserves to lie in State in the Capitol bldg, if nothing else to serve as a reminder to the vast majority of lawmakers who have NEVER served what true selfless service and sacrifice looks like.

        Look at the list here:

        I’d say this man has earned the right to be on the list….

  7. here’s a handy list I just got in an e-mail from them.  A top ten kind of thing:

    The Republican budget would:

    1. Destroy 700,000 jobs, according to an independent economic analysis.

    2. Zero out federal funding for National Public Radio and public television.

    3. Cut $1.3 billion from community health centers-which will deprive more than 3 million low-income people of health care over the next few months.

    4. Cut nearly a billion dollars in food and health care assistance to pregnant women, new moms, and children.

    5. Kick more than 200,000 children out of pre-school by cutting funds for Head Start.

    6. Force states to fire 65,000 teachers and aides, dramatically increasing class sizes, thanks to education cuts.

    7. Cut some or all financial aid for 9.4 million low- and middle-income college students.

    8. Slash $1.6 billion from the National Institutes of Health, a cut that experts say would “send shockwaves” through cancer research, likely result in cuts to Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s research, and cause job losses.

    9. End the only federal family planning program, including cutting all federal funding that goes to Planned Parenthood to support cancer screenings and other women’s health care.

    10. Send 10,000 low-income veterans into homelessness by cutting in half the number of veterans who get housing vouchers this year.

    I hear them talking about having to be adults and sharing the sacrifice but does anybody see any sacrifice being asked here of anyone whose interests the GOP represents?

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