Tuesday Open Thread

“Under the influence of fear, which always leads men to take a pessimistic view of things, they magnified their enemies’ resources, and minimized their own.”

–Livy

145 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. MADCO says:

    Should the tax rates be progressive or regressive?

    Angry face

    Angry face

    Angry face

    Angry face

    Angry face

    Angry face

    Angry face

    Angry face

    “I could end the deficit in 5 minutes. You just pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more than 3% of GDP all sitting members of congress are ineligible for reelection.” W. Buffett

  2. gnawdoow says:

    Ben Smith of Politico had  this item yesterday.

    http://www.politico.com/blogs/

    Among the sticking points in the debt ceiling debate is the White House and Democratic drive to change the treatment of “carried interest,” taxing part of fund managers’ bonuses fees at the higher rate that applies to personal income, not the lower one for capital gains.

    The stakes are high for the Treasury and for the private equity and hedge fund industries, which are fighting the change hard, and they just got a boost from two Congressional Democrats, Jared Polis and Mike Quigley, who signed a new letter to President Obama defending the current treatment of carried interest.

    “Such a tax increase would not only damage our already fragile economic recovery, but it would also cripple the spirit of iniovation and entrepreneurship that makes our country so strong,” they write, arguing that the current lower taxes on carried intrest encourage private equity investments “in new, untapped markets.”

    The two dismiss the notion that the change would merely close a “loophole” and write that the tax would “devastate” other areas of the economy as well, including the struggling commercial real estate industry.

    If we need to fix the CRE market we should, but NOT BY GIVING MILLIONAIRES TAX BREAKS! After all there is no guarantee that the tax break will go to anything productive or good for the CRE market. The plutocrats can just sit on the money just like the corporate CEOs sitting on trillions of cash and not hiring or spending. Tax cuts to rich people don’t help the economy very much, whereas SNAP benefits, unemployment, supplemental assistance inject money directly into the economy and stimulate more consumption. And wall st bankers and hedge fund managers ARE NOT JOB CREATORS!!! They mostly skim off profits from the deals they make, like a parasite only more destructive.

    Get on the horn and write or call Polis and express your opinion of his desire to shield millionaires from paying their fair share.

  3. Libertad says:

    Spending the vast majority of time on messaging the effort to lever up the national debt has left the Obama team exposed. Further the messaging battle appears to be in dire straits with 42% of Americans wanting their congressperson to vote against increasing the debt and only 24 wanting an aye vote.

    A recent Gallup poll suggested Americans aren’t paying attention to Democrats message; one might say it’s the boy crying wolf reflection. Americans like most capitalists are focused on making money – either as a paid worker or as an owner/operator/investor.

    http://washingtonexaminer.com/

    President Obama has wielded many of the tools available to his White House in hopes of moving public opinion on stalled deficit negotiations, but the message blitz has not caught on with most Americans, causing some to wonder if his options are exhausted.

    “The public is suffering from apocalypse fatigue,” said Charles Walcott, a political scientist at Virginia Tech, who focuses on the presidency. “People aren’t buying it until they see proof [of economic calamity]. Until then, I don’t know what else he can do.”

    Although Obama has made progress in portraying Republicans as obstructionists, most Americans have not embraced the president’s stance on the consequences of not raising the nation’s $14.3 trillion debt ceiling.

    According to the most recent Gallup poll, nearly twice as many Americans want their Congress member to vote against raising the debt ceiling as to vote for raising it — 42 percent versus 22 percent. One third of those polled were unsure of the proper solution. Experts said that illustrates the president’s failure to reach those outside Washington, many of whom see the debate as political posturing.

    • SSG_Dan says:

      But here’s a better poll, using your methodology:


      Poll: 71% shun GOP handling of debt crisis

      Americans are unimpressed with their political leaders’ handling of the debt ceiling crisis, with a new CBS News poll showing a majority disapprove of all the involved parties’ conduct, but Republicans in Congress fare the worst, with just 21 percent backing their resistance to raising taxes.

      President Obama earned the most generous approval ratings for his handling of the weeks-old negotiations, but still more people said they disapproved (48 percent) than approved (43 percent) of what he has done and said.

      http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-50

      Actually, the math is pretty clear on that one – people think the GOP couldn’t find their ass with both hands and a funnel on this issue.

      But here’s a doubling of numbers FOR raising the debt ceiling:

      Poll: Support for debt ceiling increase doubles

      Americans are now roughly split on raising the debt ceiling, a new CBS News poll shows, with support for an increase nearly doubling since last month.

      The spike in support for an increase follows dire warnings from the Obama administration and many economists concerning the consequences of lack of action. They have warned of a possible U.S. default on its obligations, a stock market crash, an increase in interest rates and a halt in Social Security payments and other obligations.

      Some Republicans, among them presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann, have deemed such warnings “scare tactics.” But the warnings — and the increased media coverage of the issue — seem to have prompted many Americans to move from opposing an increase to backing one.

      Support for increasing the debt ceiling has risen 22 points from last month, from 24 percent to 46 percent. Opposition has fallen 20 points in that period, from 69 percent to 49 percent. (See graphic at left.)

      http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-50

      Perhaps if you spent a few more hours away from your quest for an epic axe and some more time reading the polls, you’d get that the Republican’t party is being beaten to a pulp on their stubborn support for the Millionaire Tax Cut…

      • ellbee says:

        Has been completely debunked.  It was a poll manipulated for a headline that you fell for.

        The headline could have been:

        “65% shun Dem handling of debt crisis”

        And that would be before you adjusted the poll back to reality instead of skewing it ridiculously by inserting a 10-point Dem advantage.

        Good slogan, though.  Thanks, network of “Fake but accurate”.

        • SSG_Dan says:

          yeah, you don’t like the results so the poll is “skewed.” If we throw out a Rassy poll,it’s god’s honest truth.

          Neither party is fairing well in this fucked situation, but the Repubs are dropping in the polls like a rock.

          • ellbee says:

            It’s SKEWED.  Intentionally.

            You make fun of Libby for quoting Rasmussen all the time, and this poll is waaaay more skewed than Rasmussen (who I also believe is skewed, generally).

            Come on – a ten-point oversampling to get a headline?  

            You’re better than that.  You’re a Kings fan!

            • SSG_Dan says:

              Geez, as many things as I’ve thrown up on Pols related to hockey, you’ve finally come out of the closet and answered!

              • ellbee says:

                Look really tough this year.  If Gagne can stay healthy, that’s going to be big.

                What do you think about the Avs adding so much size on the blueline?

                • SSG_Dan says:

                  If they were serious about rebulding the team, they shouldn’t have made the trades they did last year at the deadline.

                  Now they’re restocking at positions they desperately need….using one-year contracts. if they think theses are the guys, why not spend the money to keep ’em around?

                  You already know my opinion of the goalie fiasco….

                  The Avs are SOOOOO FAAAAAARRRR below the floor of salary cap, but they refuse to spend any money on free agents that would make a difference, either short-term or long-term. The idea that they’re patching holes to build thru the draft later doesn’t make any sense, since they really don’t have any premium picks in the next few years.

                  This sucks since the Avs are my #2 team in Hockey, and I love to go to home games.  But are they going to be in the cellar all season just to build thru the draft later?

                  (BTW, with all the former Philly players going to LA PLUS the coach, I might just start calling them the Flings…or the Klyers.)

                  • Barron X says:

                    .

                    Mebbe they need that Billionaire Tax Break before they can invest in better players.

                    .

                    • SSG_Dan says:

                      While it’s a lot more sane since the strike, NHL teams are generally not profitable unless they make the playoffs.

                      Some, in big-market hockey crazy cities (New York, Boston, Toronto) will make money if they dwell in the bottom of the standings, but in Colorado they will not be profitable unless they make the playoffs.

                      Oddly enough, one of the things that hurt them is being own by a guy who put them on his own cable network. In this market, ad revenue sucks on cable – the team would’ve made far more money by staying on My20 when they were purchased by 9News…

  4. MADCO says:

    in farm subsidies int he past two years than my grandmother’s farm has earned in the past ten.  

    • ellbee says:

      Is your Grandma hot and has she raised 465 foster children?

      🙂

    • Diogenesdemar says:

      gasflabbing about recent “reparations” to black farmers?  Michelle is.

      (Can’t link right now, on blackberry.  Someone help me out, or I’ll link later this evening.)

      • TobiasFunke says:

        I give you reason number eleventy billion why this woman cannot win a general election:

        http://wonkette.com/449647/mic…  

      • Middle of the Road says:

        or slam black folks for finally being compensated for decades of discrimination in aid they were denied, which can only be topped in irony by noting the Bachmann family received a quarter of a million dollars in farm subsidies over 11 years.  

        She and Steve King are showcasing it as an example of wasteful government spending because apparently $1.2 billion in settlement money is our biggest problem, in comparison to the billions of dollars in oil and gas subsidies that we cheerfully hand out like candy annually to the O&G good old boys network.

        And hey, it makes for a good talking point when you’re touring Iowa’s floods and you need to win the Iowa caucus next year. Let’s face it–Bachmann’s base ain’t black folks so this is fresh meat to the adoring fan base.

        Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann pointed to one program in particular Monday when talking about wasteful government spending: a multibillion dollar settlement paid to black farmers, who claim the federal government discriminated against them for decades in awarding loans and other aid.

        • ellbee says:

          I’m not a fan of the “fixing” of gays thing, but I think their point is not in reparations to black farmers that were discriminated against, but in the implementation of the program:

          According to the census, there were 18,000 black farmers in the country when the lawsuit was filed. But 97,000 black “farmers” have applied for the money.

          Black farmer Jimmy Dismuke says it’s fraud. He said lawyers went to black churches and told people who had never farmed to file for the money.

          “People say well, how do I qualify?” Dismuke told us. “And then [the lawyers] started talking about potted plants.  They said if you had a potted plant, you can be a farmer.  And if you have a yard and you fertilize it, you’re a farmer.”

          • Middle of the Road says:

            Do you need a cool cloth for your forehead?

            Or have you just lost your mind thinking that I’m going to read a link to Andrew Breitbart’s site?

            So, which is it? Gosh, I’m almost hoping for heat stroke.  

            • Diogenesdemar says:

              If I had to bet, I’m sure they’re covering this “news” on the Faux channel word-for-word today.

            • ellbee says:

              USDA Document.

              http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/rbs

              GAO Document detailing discrepancy..

              http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d

              • Middle of the Road says:

                And a 26 page document at that. I’ll definitely give that a thorough reading, no problem. I have so much spare time these days, that should fit right in with my reading schedule.

                • ellbee says:

                  The second one isn’t so bad.

                  • PERA hopeful says:

                    Then the court monitor re-examined 4939 claims after petitions were filed requesting re-examination?  And the monitor awarded damages to about 4400 more farmers after those reviews, so about 18,700 farmers received awards under the settlement … which is pretty darn close to the 18,000 farmers you cited, isn’t it?

                    If the census really said there were 18,000 black farmers at the relevant time, how many people wanted to farm but couldn’t because they were discriminated against when they applied for loans for their seed money?  (Otherwise known as additional class members.)

                    • ellbee says:

                      This is from the GAO document referenced above.  THings might have changed, I don’t know.

                      As of February 2006, over 97,000 people had filed claims under the consent decree or requests to file late claims—about five to six times more claims than anticipated. Of the 97,000, the court had received 23,314 claims seeking compensation by the filing deadline of October 12, 1999. About 900 of the on-time claims were determined to be not eligible. The court received an additional 73,816 requests for permission to file a claim after the October 12, 1999 filing deadline. Except in relatively few extraordinary cases, the claims received after the filing deadline were denied as not timely. Because so many farmers’ attempts to file a claim were denied due to late filing, some claimants argued in court that the notice of the settlement was insufficient to reach the majority of potential class members.6 Nevertheless, after review, the court ruled that the notice was more than adequate. Overall, by January 2006, about 22,400 claims had been reviewed, decided, and in some cases reexamined: about 14,300 claims-64 percent-were approved for payments and benefits totaling over $900 million. The remaining 8,100 claims-36 percent-have been denied. More than half of the claims that were initially denied have been or will be reviewed by the court-appointed monitor.

  5. SSG_Dan says:

    Bill Clinton: I’d use 14th Amendment

    Former President Bill Clinton would invoke the 14th Amendment – “without hesitation, and force the courts to stop me,” he says – to raise the debt ceiling if he were in President Barack Obama’s shoes, with the deadline to raise the limit just two weeks away.

    “I think the Constitution is clear and I think this idea that the Congress gets to vote twice on whether to pay for [expenditures] it has appropriated is crazy,” Clinton said in an interview with journalist Joe Conason.

    Clinton said he would turn to the Constitution “if it came to that,” but doesn’t think that Obama will need to. “It looks to me like they’re going to make an agreement, and that’s smart,” he said.

    Clinton said that raising the debt ceiling “is necessary to pay for appropriations already made.” Congressional Republicans, he said, “can’t say, ‘Well, we won the last election and we didn’t vote for some of that stuff, so we’re going to throw the whole country’s credit into arrears.”

    http://www.politico.com/news/s

    So, if the GOP f*cks the dog and refuses to make any deals by Aug 2nd, the President has this in his pocket to keep things running.

    The Dems are probably already lining up some disabled veterans, retired people on Social Security and military families who’s spouses are deployed, to talk about the “extreme hardship the short-sighted Republicans have inflicted by cutting off my veterans disability payments/social security/military pay and allowances.”

    Let that sink in, the market start to capsize, and President Obama steps in, invoking the 14th amendment and looks like the grownup in all this.  

  6. VanDammer says:

    There, I said it out loud and I’m damn proud.  I want this woman on the ticket in ’12 and at the top in ’16.  

    Here’s Elizabeth Warren on Rachel Maddow’s show (sorry, FFW to 07:05 in the clip).

    And here’s the truth from her WH blog:

    “I want to be real clear. The reason I can not run this agency is because of [Republicans],” Warren continued. “They have made it perfectly clear that they are not going to let this agency go forward if I am there. Fine, I can step away from this. What I care about is this agency.”

    “I think it’s time to take the fight straight to the Republicans,” she added. “We need a director in place, that is the law, and we are not, not, not going to let the minority come in and dictate the terms of this agency – rip its arms and legs off before it is able to help a single family.”

    She is a Progressive/Libs dream:  a strong, ethical, straight-talking, independent women seeking higher office to serve people & principles rather than to serve her ego.

    Nothing like her can or will ever exist in the GOP/TeaBagger world.  

     

    • BlueCat says:

      and I think she’d do great.

    • WitnessProtectionForGeeks says:

      Her research on bankruptcy shatters myths most americans hold as true.

      Her research on the 2 income trap is amazing, social conservatives should be doing backflips to have her so prominent in the progressive movement.

      The resistance to her is sign of power of our corptocracy.

  7. Canines says:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07

    In April, the Food and Drug Administration said it was satisfied that safety concerns over the [PTSD] study…

    But the letter also noted that the project could not go forward until the researchers identified where they would get their marijuana. And that cannot happen, Mr. Doblin said, until the project is approved by a scientific review panel from the Department of Health and Human Services, which includes representatives from an assortment of federal health agencies…

    An institutional review board must also approve the study, as well as the Drug Enforcement Administration, Mr. Doblin said.

    Getting final approval from the federal government could prove difficult, Mr. Doblin and Dr. Sisley conceded. They said it was far more challenging to get authorization for a study that examines the benefits of an illegal drug than its risks.

    • SSG_Dan says:

      the MMJ industry needs to get out there with dosage and potency guidelines, and then force the industry to adopt them. Waiting for studies like this will just not help them.

      In addition, they need to sponsor some good evidence-based research ON THEIR OWN on the issue of using MMJ to treat Post-traumatic Stress Injuries, and establish dosage guidelines that specifically address mild, moderate and severe levels of those injuries.

      “Smokin’ a blunt until I feel better” is not going to get the approval of any state or Federal agency involved in this issue, and it certainly won’t get the approval of any state legislature….

  8. Canines says:

    May the Mayor ride the steed of healthy economic development…and stay off of his high horse.

    • BlueCat says:

      Killer horse at DIA. An arriving friend told me how horrible she thought it was and when I told her it had actually killed its creator she thought that made perfect sense.

  9. Libertad says:

    You have two families: “Joe Legal” and “Jose Illegal”, both families have two parents, two children, and live in California.

    Joe Legal works in construction, has a Social Security Number and makes $25.00 per hour with taxes deducted. Jose Illegal also works in construction, has NO Social Security Number, and gets paid $15.00 cash “under the table”.

    Ready? Now pay attention…

    Joe Legal: $25.00 per hour x 40 hours = $1000.00 per week, or $52,000.00 per year. Now take 30% away for state and federal tax; Joe Legal now has $31,231.00.

    Jose Illegal: $15.00 per hour x 40 hours = $600.00 per week, or $31,200.00 per year. Jose Illegal pays no taxes. Jose Illegal now has $31,200.00.

    Joe Legal pays medical and dental insurance with limited coverage for his family at $600.00 per month, or $7,200.00 per year. Joe Legal now has $24,031.00.

    Jose Illegal has full medical and dental coverage through the state and local clinics at a cost of $0.00 per year. Jose Illegal still has $31,200.00.

    Joe Legal makes too much money and is not eligible for food stamps or Welfare. Joe Legal pays $500.00 per month for food, or $6,000.00 per year. Joe Legal now has $18,031.00.

    Jose Illegal has no documented income and is eligible for food stamps and welfare. Jose Illegal still has $31,200.00.

    Joe Legal pays rent of $1,200.00 per month, or $14,400.00 per year. Joe Legal now has $9,631.00.

    Jose Illegal receives a $500.00 per month federal rent subsidy. Jose Illegal pays out that $500.00 per month, or $6,000.00 per year. Jose Illegal Still has $ 31,200.00.

    Joe Legal pays $200.00 per month, or $2,400.00 for insurance. Joe Legal now has $7,231.00.

    Jose Illegal says, “We don’t need no stinkin’ insurance!” and still has $31,200.00.

    Joe Legal has to make his $7,231.00 stretch to pay utilities, gasoline, etc.

    Jose Illegal has to make his $31,200.00 stretch to pay utilities, gasoline, and what he sends out of the country every month.

    Joe Legal now works overtime on Saturdays or gets a part time job after work.

    Jose Illegal has nights and weekends off to enjoy with his family.

    Joe Legal’s and Jose Illegal’s children both attend the same school. Joe Legal pays for his children’s lunches while Jose Illegal’s children get a government sponsored lunch. Jose Illegal’s children have an after school ESL program. Joe Legal’s children go home.

    Joe Legal and Jose Illegal both enjoy the same police and fire services, but Joe paid for them and Jose did not pay.

    Do you get it, now?

    • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

      One

      Two

      Three

      Four

      Five

      Six

      Seven

      Eight

      Nine

      Ten

      Eleven

      I could go on, but more importantly, a brief list of facts said drivel contains:

      • VanDammer says:

        folks, there are much better ways to spend time that responding to factless crap the ‘turd troll dumps.

        ‘turd will not change minds, ‘turd doesn’t want rational discourse … no, ‘turd is that Tourettes afflicted Raymond that reveres rAssmussen polls & Brietbart sites like they’re the 2nd coming of Judge Wapner.  

        BTW, no way ‘turd could have done all that ciphering so that was the sure giveaway this is a trolls cut-n-paste game.

         

    • SSG_Dan says:

      …when in fact, they pay more than some US Corporations:


      Illegal Immigrants Pay More Taxes Than Many Top U.S. Corporations

      According to the Institute for Taxation and Economic Policy (itepnet.org), undocumented workers paid billions in state and local taxes last year. GE, remember, paid NOTHING. Though conservatives will likely put ITEP alongside FactCheck and PolitiFact as liberal propaganda machines, ITEP is, as the NY Daily News reports, “a prestigious, nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization that works on federal, state and local tax policy issues.”

      So just to recapitulate: GE, which earned $14.2 billion last year, paid ZERO taxes. These hardworking immigrants (and I do mean hardworking – some of them work 2 or 3 or more jobs) paid $11.2 billion in taxes. It’s a fair guess none of them enjoy the lifestyle of any of the heads of the above-named companies on Bernie Sanders’ list of shame.

      And just to recapitulate: GE  has laid off 21,000 American workers between 2007 and 2009. And that’s not all: it’s also closed 20 factories. Currently more than half its workforce is outside the United States.

      All the while we are assured that the immigrants have to go. Sounds to me like perhaps it’s the corporations that should go. Their sins have been made manifest: They’ve already shipped millions of jobs overseas and are busy breaking up the unions that protect workers from abuse and are trying to steal our retirements from us. We’ve already seen that Koch Industries are even telling their employees how to vote.

      Immigrants are suddenly not looking very much like a threat.

      http://www.politicususa.com/en

      Do YOU get it now?

    • Aristotle says:

      Are we okay calling Libby “racist” now?

      • ellbee says:

        I don’t like the “Jose” stuff.

        I think it’s more xenophobic than racist.

        • Aristotle says:

          that he didn’t call his fictional character “Beaner Lawbreaker.” But he doesn’t have to go there – the line of racism is closer than the use of explicit insults.

          What’s the distinction, to you, between xenophobia and racism, if I may ask?

          • ellbee says:

            Doesn’t necessarily mean that someone is racist.  It could be motivated by a distaste for non-American workers.

            It’s prevalent in Europe between “old Europe” and the workers from old Soviet Bloc countries that want to work.

            • Aristotle says:

              We have citizens from nearly every nation on earth here in America illegally. Some are trying to immigrate, some aren’t. Many come from cultures that have a lot less in common with ours than Mexico’s, like Chinese and southeast Asians. But lib specifically chose to denigrate Mexicans. Wouldn’t a xenophobe have more problems with with people from more “alien” cultures?

              • ellbee says:

                Don’t know. You’ll have to ask the dude that wrote it.

                • Aristotle says:

                  I’m familiar enough with the type of person who writes this stuff, and the type of person who passes it on.

                  That said, is xenophobia a lesser evil than racism? Or an evil at all?

                  • ellbee says:

                    They’re pretty similar, although I think it’s human nature to an extent to notice groups different from one’s own.  To band together.

                    Are the French racist or xenophobic for not wanting Polish or Romanian workers to enter their markets?

                    • Aristotle says:

                      We’re talking about Libertad here, not the French. (And I doubt all French are of the same opinion anyway.)

                      Can I take this to mean that you think it’s a lesser evil?

                    • ellbee says:

                      You can take it to mean that I think his use of the word “jose” in this instance was inappropriate, but I don’t want to speculate on his psychological makeup.  Why are you asking me questions about him?

                      He’s right here…

                    • Aristotle says:

                      … the reason I’m asking you is because you’ve taken on the roll of “Defender Of Conservatives Against Charges Of Racism” here at pols, so I’m trying to suss out what it is you consider to be “over the line.” Since you brought up xenophobia as an alternative explanation, it seems that you regard it as lesser. (I’m okay with that – evil is evil, after all – but I think they’re symptoms of the same disease IMO).

                      BTW, I don’t mean “lesser evil” in the sense that it’s often used when discussing politics (“I don’t like either candidate, so I’m going with the lesser of two evils.”) I mean real social ills that we all face.

                      Anyway, I’m also asking you because I can have a reasonable discussion with you, but not him. There are times when I seriously wonder if Libertad’s suffered some kind of brain damage. I’m not saying that to ding him at all – it’s something I really wonder.

                    • Aristotle says:

                      Come on, ellbee…

                    • ellbee says:

                      I think it’s situational.  Racism probably exists out of fear and anger, and influences from your parents and peer group, where I could see xenophobia existing (not here, in the U.S.) in situations where one group of people is being put out of work, food and prosperity by another group, but I think it’s pretty speculative.

              • Libertad says:

                I read in one of the favored liberal elitist magazines or on CNN.com that only 60% of the 11+ million illegal aliens are Mexican. “Jose” gets your attention.

                Mexicans like the rest of the world use a very diverse set of first names for their children …. http://www.babynames.org.uk/ba… …. As you know not every Americcan is named Joe or Mary.

                I guess to placate you and freeze you from dealing the race card right out of the shoot I should have called them Isreal Legal and Ivan Illegal. But as you know, the basis of the entry above came from an email I got from a buddy.

                Pssst, the buddy is even married to one, you know , one of “them”

            • VanDammer says:

              the badges quip seals it

              ‘turd isn’t showing fear of a culture, no he’s a racist and his racism is based solely on ethnicity & ancestry.  

              ‘turd clearly has it against folks of Spanish heritage.  Betcha he also hates him some South Asians and Semitic folks too.

              Sad, sad world for ‘turd.  Being a productive caring part of our American society sure seems a heavy burden for some white Anglo middle-class victims.

              • Aristotle says:

                as to say that he also “hates him some South Asians and Semitic folks too.” Racism and bigotry can be funny things – some folks only have it in for one or two other groups, not every non-WASP. Images of the Klan or the Nazis as the ultimate racists tend to obscure the much more subtle ways racism and bigotry manifest themselves.

            • WitnessProtectionForGeeks says:

              I don’t hear anybody bitching about the damn snowbacks.

              It’s racist.

    • Diogenesdemar says:

      meet Libby.

  10. SSG_Dan says:

    …because if this deceptive asshat wants to pretend he’s a real journalist, then he has to play by the same libel rules that real journalists have to.

    Based on previous cases, he’s not only going to loose his cock, ass and balls to Ms. Sherrod, they’re going to take a note on his dreams as well.


    Shirley Sherrod Case Against Andrew Breitbart Begins

    Sherrod is now suing Breitbart, his employee Larry O’Connor and an unnamed “John Doe” defendant for “defamation, false light and intentional infliction of emotional distress.” Sherrod’s lawyers say the unnamed defendant is the person who they believe passed the video on to Breitbart.

    The suit asks for damages but does not specify an amount. The complaint says the incident has affected Sherrod’s sleep and caused her back pain. It contends that she was damaged by having her “integrity, impartiality and motivations questioned, making it difficult (if not impossible) for her to continue her life’s work assisting poor farmers in rural areas” even though she was invited to come back to the Agriculture Department.

    Lawyers for Breitbart and O’Connor have called the suit an assault on free speech and charge that Sherrod is seeking “revenge” on Breitbart because she does not like his politics.  

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/

    In case anyone would like to read “the rules” they’re here:

    http://www.apstylebook.com/

  11. ProgressiveCowgirl says:

    Here we go again.

    According to the New York congressman, Al-Shabaab has recruited for terrorist training “dozens” of American Muslims from Minnesota, Ohio, as well as other states.

    There is little I could say about Peter King and his anti-American crusade that I have not already said on this blog, so I will simply say this: Peter King is no American, and the next round of hearings should focus on cross-examining people like King so slavishly devoted to hatred that they are willing to risk creating far, far, FAR greater risks to American safety than those posed by literally DOZENS of people who may or may not have some sort of dubious affiliation with Communist radicals, I mean radical Islamists, I mean the latest scary dust bunny hiding under our collective beds.

    • ellbee says:

      Are you stating that what you quoted isn’t true?

      • SSG_Dan says:

        Because, y’know, Rep King has proof that there are 127 fatwa-carrying members of Al-Shabaab working in the State Department recruiting people to become terrorists.

        Rep King doesn’t have shit for proof – the numbers he’s citing he pulled out of his enlarged ass.

        There isn’t a single piece of evidence that what Rep King is saying is true – all of the stories covering this frogwash are from the Right-Wing-O-Verse….

        • ellbee says:

          The quote she listed is demonstrably true.  I was wondering if there was something more to it.

          • SSG_Dan says:

            The only person shrieking this number is REP KING. Not anyone from the FBI or any other multiletter agency. Or the responsible press.

            There are anti-terror investigations going on in this country – and so far, the vast majority turn out to be wannabee terrorists who get busted the moment they get tricked into getting our buying something from a Fed sting operation.

            He makes this shit up, the Right-Wing-O-verse picks it up and repeats it, and then he cites it as proof. This is better than anything I’ve ever seen in my Army PSYOPS Class….

            • ellbee says:

              http://www.reuters.com/article

              (Reuters) – A Minneapolis man pleaded guilty on Monday to providing material support to a militant group that recruited young men of Somali descent to fight in Somalia, at least two of whom blew themselves up in attacks.

              Omer Abdi Mohamed, 26, faces up to 15 years in prison after admitting to providing support for al-Shabaab, which the U.S. government has designated a terrorist group.

              He was indicted in November 2009 as part of an investigation into the recruitment by al-Shabaab of ethnic Somali men from the Minneapolis area. Several groups of men have left the Minneapolis area for Somalia since October 2007.

              • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

                That must mean SKULLDUGGERY IS AFOOT!

                Nobody ever returns to their home country for reasons other than terrorism, of course.

                • ellbee says:

                  Do you think that maybe, in this very particular instance, that this isn’t about discriminating against Muslims, but is something that’s provably happened that might be worth investigating?

                  • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

                    And if they are indeed terrorists, why investigate them LEAVING, other than to figure out what motivated them to do so and replicate the effect?

                    The last I checked, a United States of America that can’t decide whether or not to pay its bills isn’t really qualified to be the Somalian police, too. If you have a link stating that we’ve responded to a request from the Somalian government that we help in this particular instance, I may take it back.  

                    • ellbee says:

                      THey were leaving to receive training from an AQ allied-group that has declared war on the U.S.

                      Still no biggie for you?

                    • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

                      Based on the fact that they share a religion with people who may be breaking US laws while outside the US, who have not yet perpetrated any attack on the US, and who are not affiliated with any nation having the authority to make a declaration of war?

                      I’m legitimately curious if you have one. You seem pretty familiar with that old document.

                    • ellbee says:

                      I’m talking precisely about your quote in your post today.

                      It is, in fact, illegal to give material support to a terrorist-designated agency.

                      I’m not a lawyer, but I’d think that blowing oneself up in a market for Al Shabaab would count as material support.

                    • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

                      I’ll set aside my disagreement on the various overreaching laws set up as part of the “war on terror,” since that’s not what’s being debated here. What is Peter King’s decision to harass people who have not been charged with any criminal offense do to further the investigation of crimes committed on Somalian soil by people who are unfortunately as a result wholly unable to stand trial?

                    • ellbee says:

                      Pledging one’s allegiance to an organization pledged to destroying the U.S. is a problem for me.

                      Who is Peter King “harassing” who has not been charged specifically related to the MN/Al Shabaab situation you quoted?

                      I’d prefer we “harass” Al Shabaab with hellfire missles and Navy Seal teams, but that’s just me.

                    • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

                      Quick, let’s ruin several thousand careers and destroy several thousand families!

                      Words are not bullets. Someone who has made such a pledge is rightly ineligible for the presidency, but that’s all the constitution says about punishing such a pledge in the absence of a related, illegal action.

                      But there is a whole, entire amendment about freedom of speech.

                    • ellbee says:

                      We are referring to your specific quote regarding Al Shabaab.

                      I’ll ask again:

                      Who is Peter King “harassing” who has not been charged specifically related to the MN/Al Shabaab situation you quoted?

                    • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

                      …of American Muslims.

                      He’s not holding hearings investigating Al Shabaab; if he were, I think he’d probably get a quiet “knock if off” from the legitimate government agencies tasked with actually fighting the “war on terror,” rather than blustering from a podium about it without taking ten seconds to research the effect of that kind of blustering on American troops deployed overseas.

                      He’s holding hearings investigating a religion and the people who believe in it. How can a guy like you support that? Don’t you kinda lean Libertarian on most things? Shoot, I was a staunch atheist for years and I won’t stand for it. Why are you standing for it?  

                    • ellbee says:

                      You didn’t say anything about 2.8 million Muslims until I pressed you on it.

                      Were you unaware of what’s been going on up in MN?  I’m not saying that to be an asshole, you don’t live in MN.

                      According to an FBI friend of mine, it’s one of their most active counter-terror investigations in the country.

                      I just wanted to point out that King might not be as off-the-mark and antagonistic on this particular issue as you might believe him to be.

                    • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

                      He’s an opportunist. If he were interested in helping the FBI with their investigations, he’d shut up and ask them how he could help. I doubt they’d ask him to hold public hearings.

                      He’s grasping onto any news that gives him an excuse to harass more Muslims. He’s already selected that as part of his personal agenda, so of course he keeps an eye on the news regarding various investigations and takes every opportunity to capitalize.

                      Dan put it better than I did–he’s after material for his newsletter, not terrorists.

                    • SSG_Dan says:

                      but if Rep King thought this was a serious threat to national security, and if he didn’t want to endanger any ongoing investigations, but wanted to get the straight facts from the various domestic and federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies….

                      …why wouldn’t he hold a CLOSED, Secret hearing on the subject?

                      I know – because then he couldn’t generate any material for his Congressional newsletter and his fundraising efforts with real Americans.

                      This hearing isn’t about accurately evaluating threats to the United States, it’s about using the Muslim community in the US as a Repub punching bag. And Republican’t Party is perfectly happy with that.

                    • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

                      I have a friend, a friend who disagrees with me on every political issue under the Sun but who I love dearly, who is going to be leading his infantry unit to Afghanistan in the next few months. I do not appreciate Peter King’s decision that the aforementioned Congressional newsletter needs a flashy headline more than my dear friend needs to deploy into as safe a combat environment as possible.

                    • ellbee says:

                      Your friend might be in more danger from Al Shabaab in Afghanistan because Peter King is investigating the pipeline that U.S. citizens went from MN to Somalia?

                    • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

                      Fired by someone who believes terrorist propaganda stating that the US wishes to exterminate the Islamic religion and is waging war on Afghanistan to further those goals.

                      Every time Peter King opens his racist, disingenuous, self-interested mouth, he hands every terrorist organization in the world a flashy headline for THEIR newsletter.

                      I’m not kidding about the newsletters, by the way.

                      Terrorists are evil, not idiots. They are very, very willing to use this kind of thing to their best advantage.

                    • ellbee says:

                      Because the Taliban were totally inert before these investigations this year?

                    • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

                      Ironically, Peter King is one of mine; his ignorant and racist statements about Muslims have made religious freedom a priority for me as an activist.

                      It’s not at all difficult to imagine the same statements being the last straw for someone who had previously resisted recruitment efforts by Al-Qaeda.  

                    • Barron X says:

                      .

                      http://antiwar.com/radio/2011/

                      he sez that a couple dozen youth from Twin Cities have gone to Somalia to fight against the West.  

                      I’d trust him before I’d trust the CIA,

                      especially now that it is headed up by “Mr. Strategic Communications” himself.  

                      If you don’t think that the US is at war against the Muslim religion, I guess we can agree to disagree.

                      The problem with folks being naive about this, though, is that they don’t do anything to stop or change this terrible situation.

                      You assume that official US policy would NEVER embrace such injustice and immorality, and you’re right.  

                      But we go to war over Presidential peeves, not official policy.

                      And we stay at war because of inertia.  

                      If not to put Islam back in its box, remind me why we are at war against the civilian population of Afghanistan.  

                      .  

                    • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

                      If I had my way, we wouldn’t be at war overseas at all. We have to finish what the Republicans started in Afghanistan now, but it never should have been started.

                    • Barron X says:

                      .

                      http://antiwar.com/radio/2011/

                      he sez that a couple dozen youth from Twin Cities have gone to Somalia to fight against the West.  

                      I’d trust him before I’d trust the CIA,

                      especially now that it is headed up by “Mr. Strategic Communications” himself.  

                      If you don’t think that the US is at war against the Muslim religion, I guess we can agree to disagree.

                      The problem with folks being naive about this, though, is that they don’t do anything to stop or change this terrible situation.

                      You assume that official US policy would NEVER embrace such injustice and immorality, and you’re right.  

                      But we go to war over Presidential peeves, not official policy.

                      And we stay at war because of inertia.  

                      If not to put Islam back in its box, remind me why we are at war against the civilian population of Afghanistan.  

                      .  

      • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

        Because “dozens” who happen to share a religious belief system with those thousands may or may not have been asked to prepare to possibly break a law in the future, at some tenuous and unspecified time.

        I was raised to believe that I had been fortunate enough to be born as a citizen of a country in which you have to actually break a law in order to be treated like a criminal. Scum like Peter King are willing to do irreparable damage to the fundamental contract of trust between the governed and their government, ostensibly to track down a few dozen people with questionable associations.

        I was raised to be ashamed of McCarthyism as an episode America could learn from and avoid repeating. Peter King seem to have been raised to see it as a good start.

        There are men and women still living today who lost their careers because someone levied a false accusation of communism against them. Why don’t you go ask one of them how concerned they are about whether or not Peter King has accurately identified a cluster of a few potential law-breakers?

        If he wants to investigate an organization that recruits enormous numbers of terrorists by instilling in people the belief that America is an enemy bent on doing them harm, I humbly suggest that he begin with the right-wing Republican party.

        • ellbee says:

          THat’s the best reply you have is that Republicans are terrorists?

          There have been a number of US citizens that have ended up as suicide bombers and fighters with Al-Shabaab in Somalia.  THat’s a fact.  Are you saying that’s not worthy of investigating?

          As far as King goes, this actually seems fairly common sense and not very sensational.

          • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

            …Demanding that Muslims explain why some people who share their faith do fucked up things.

            If the CIA feels it’s worthy of looking into, well, that’s why we have a CIA.

            Don’t pretend you believe this is about anything but religious intolerance. Peter King is not afraid of US citizens who are suicide bombers in Somalia. He is afraid of his own neighbors, he is afraid of non-Christians, and he is afraid of brown people, and this is a convenient excuse for him to make them feel unwelcome.

            I can’t relate to the non-white experience or the Muslim experience, but I can relate to being held responsible for the sins of an entire group: That’s the single most common type of sexism in my generation. I can’t tell you how many times someone has asked me “Why do women (insert horrible thing)?” and then waited expectantly as if I can explain that.

            Some people murder other people. Some people share a religion with those people. The latter cannot be asked to explain the former’s actions, unless you’d like to also haul in every Christian Peter King can find and ask them about abortion clinic bombings.

            (But those are rare! Not very many people are involved! More people are killed in car accidents every day! Those are insane people, who would be insane if they weren’t Christians, too!)

            EXACTLY.

          • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

            I said they’re excellent recruiters for terrorist organizations–not a sentiment I’m anywhere near the first to utter.  

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