Time signatures like these are often known as "irregular," "complex," or "asymmetrical" time signatures.
Thursday, December 06, 2012
Time signatures like these are often known as "irregular," "complex," or "asymmetrical" time signatures.
Friday, November 16, 2012
The secret is that Janeane Wilson is actually Jane Edith Wilson, a highly-talented Los Angeles-based actress who grew up in Ames, Iowa, and who fearlessly plays this character and takes her straight into the belly of America's political beast, sitting down in a diner with Rep. Michelle Bachmann and Rep. Steve King, questioning Gov. Rick Perry's wife on her way to the campaign bus, lobbing questions to Rick Santorum, Ron Paul and Newt Gingrich on the campaign trail. Off the trail, "Janeane" faces her husband's layoff and their subsequent loss of health insurance, her alienation from her grown children, the potential loss of her house and a serious threat to her own health.
All of this done with a straight face, no winks, the only clues to the deception being the end credits which lists both actors/roles and politicians playing "Himself" or "Herself." Knowing that the politicians have been duped by Janeane creates an initial feeling that the enterprise might be unfair. It's a grueling road through Iowa, pressing the flesh and trying to master retail politics. But as Director Grace Lee had said, the politicians are themselves all acting. When Bachmann attempts to pander to Janeane by blaming President Obama for the rise in tax prices we see that moment when Bachmann looks to King for affirmation of her contention, not sure if she should run with the lie or not. She does.
The main question Janeane ends up asking all the candidates regards healthcare, and the GOP candidates give her nothing to go on, just platitudes about health savings accounts (not a solution for the laid-off) and lowering costs (which Obamacare attempts to address). What Janeane learns is that Planned Parenthood, which she's disparaged as a death-factory, is her provider of last resort, and the Obamacare the candidates want to kill is actually the solution. This may be the first feature film where Obamacare is kinda the hero.
As a friend of Grace Lee and family, I may be biased in favor of her sensibility by familiarity, but from what I hope is an objective filmmaking point-of-view, I think she's created something new. It's a combination of documentary, mockumentary, drama and agitprop, all executed with technical skill and beauty. When seen in the context of Lee's previous features, both The Grace Lee Project, a very funny documentary investigating the proliferation of Asian-American women sharing her name, and American Zombie, a metaphoric mockumentary standing up for zombie rights, Janeane for Des Moines is essentially an essay on "What's the Matter with Kansas?" Why do conservative Middle Americans vote against their own economic self-interest and well-being?
While the passing of the recent election is probably not doing a ton of favors for Janeane's shelf-life, and already the 2012 GOP candidates feel like characters trapped in a time capsule as the media discusses potential 2016 candidates like Rubio, Christie and the younger Paul, conservative Middle America hasn't suddenly vanished with the reelection of their Antichrist, President Barack Obama. This movie will remain relevant and cautionary.
Unless or until, of course, the Affordable Care Act becomes a part of everyday life and the benefits are felt by all.
Monday, October 22, 2012
A vote for Romney is a vote for a very shaky character as Commander-in-Chief. That's the take home message of tonight's debate.
The rest is just spin.
Friday, October 19, 2012
Whichever speechwriter came up with the phrase, "Romnesia," deserves a great position in the President's second term, if all goes well. The President uses the phrase to capture Romney's pandering as well as his untrustworthiness. What's key about the latter characterization is that it implies a not-so-hidden agenda, namely to ultimately serve the Republican objectives of privileged rules for the rich while shifting the most threatening burdens of risk from government onto a struggling American Middle Class populace, not to mention the poor.
Best of all, the President caps his diagnosis with a triumphantly received cure - Obamacare's coverage of pre-existing conditions. Good luck to GOP strategists who thought saddling the Affordable Care Act with that moniker would be a net negative - if Obama wins his second term and the law remains intact, it will be a trademarked Democratic legacy for all time.
If so, I expect that Fox News will eventually revert to calling it the ACA or maybe some new negative term they invent. You will see Republicans in 2024 or 2040 running on how they want to "preserve Obamacare" by turning it into a voucher system, and how dare their Democratic opponent threaten Obamacare by whatever mild reforms they may enact or advocate to keep it running.
Just like Medicare, the signature achievement of President Lyndon Baines Johnson. Democrat.
Tuesday, September 04, 2012
By contrast, the GOP keep talking about "taking back" America, but the subtext lately has been a return to secession. If we can't "take it back," we won't play. Not exactly patriotic in the "union" sense. Just as the South seceded to create The Confederacy, so does the spirit emanate from our Southern states. It's the spirit of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's ironclad no-cooperation rule. Combined with the overwhelming whiteness of the Republican Convention (not to mention the peanut throwing incident), it carries the aura of racism.
But the most interesting aspect of the secessionist movement is how easily it has blended with the 21st Century Secession of the Wealthy, so perfectly embodied in candidate Mitt Romney. It's been coming for some time. As described by Mike Lofgren in The American Conservative:
Were Mitt Romney to reveal his tax records, the electorate would learn that he has seceded with his money to Switzerland, the Cayman Islands and who knows where else. While it's completely against the interests of the grassroots secessionist whose economic situation won't be improved by the exodus of that capital from our ecosystem, it's a matter of faith.
I do not mean secession by physical withdrawal from the territory of the state, although that happens from time to time—for example, Erik Prince, who was born into a fortune, is related to the even bigger Amway fortune, and made yet another fortune as CEO of the mercenary-for-hire firm Blackwater, moved his company (renamed Xe) to the United Arab Emirates in 2011. What I mean by secession is a withdrawal into enclaves, an internal immigration, whereby the rich disconnect themselves from the civic life of the nation and from any concern about its well being except as a place to extract loot.
Our plutocracy now lives like the British in colonial India: in the place and ruling it, but not of it. If one can afford private security, public safety is of no concern; if one owns a Gulfstream jet, crumbling bridges cause less apprehension—and viable public transportation doesn’t even show up on the radar screen. With private doctors on call and a chartered plane to get to the Mayo Clinic, why worry about Medicare?
The objective of the predatory super-rich and their political handmaidens is to discredit and destroy the traditional nation state and auction its resources to themselves. Those super-rich, in turn, aim to create a “tollbooth” economy, whereby more and more of our highways, bridges, libraries, parks, and beaches are possessed by private oligarchs who will extract a toll from the rest of us. Was this the vision of the Founders? Was this why they believed governments were instituted among men—that the very sinews of the state should be possessed by the wealthy in the same manner that kingdoms of the Old World were the personal property of the monarch?
So what makes this first night of the Democratic National Convention so powerful is how American it is. American stories of real struggle and moments of real triumph, the military wife, the mother of a child with a life-threatening birth defect, the First Lady who came from modest roots. Shared patriotism through trying to make the country just a little bit easier to struggle through for all.
As the chant goes, U.S.A., U.S.A.
Sunday, August 12, 2012
There's some buzz out there that Romney's own team did not want him to pick Ryan, or that Obama's team wanted to run against Ryan. Both may be true, but they still shouldn't underestimate the 42-year-old, even if it seems like Ryan could cost the GOP Florida.
What Obama For America and its allies need to do is exactly what they did to Mitt Romney himself - brand Paul Ryan nationally before the GOP has a chance to do it themselves.
After all, even Obama's 2008 opponent, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) has admitted that the ads defining Romney as unacceptable have been a success.
Thursday, August 02, 2012
According to an unnamed source known to both Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and CNN's Dana Bash, that's the case. And Reid is not backing down when Romney tells Hannity that he oughtta "put up or shut up," he's doubling down:
“It’s clear Romney is hiding something, and the American people deserve to know what it is. Whatever Romney’s hiding probably speaks volumes about how he would approach issues that directly impact middle-class families, like tax reform and the economy. When you are running for president, you should be an open book.The Dems are forcing Romney into a corner of his own making. Mitt keeps having to defend, primarily because whatever is in those taxes is obviously damaging to him, or else he'd release them. Since the wealthy live by different rules and have all the tax lawyers and tax accountants in the world to help them "preserve capital" it is not hard to imagine Mitt having skirted his civic duty, even if foolish for someone with designs on the White House.
This whole narrative has made it impossible for Mitt to carefully choreograph his introduction to the electorate - Obama For America has already introduced him to us all as Mr. Bain, destroyer of American businesses. Best of all for Barack, it plays right into Romney's policy choices, as demonstrated by this new, hard-hitting ad:
My only fear is that Romney is so weakened by the time the GOP Convention rolls around, they replace him with somebody who might actually win.
Monday, May 28, 2012
In the antepenultimate episode of the season, "The Other Woman," Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce is pitching Jaguar and all they need to seal the deal is for Joan to sleep with one of the three decision makers. At the same time, Peggy, arguably the #2 character on the show, is feeling ready to leave. It's a show about choices and prices paid for women to do men's bidding, as filtered through a Jaguar pitch tagline, "At last, something beautiful you can truly own."
So is Peggy owned by a new agency that picks her up for more than her asking price? And is Joan owned or owner as she take a piece of SCDP for herself and her son? And is there anything Christina Hendricks can't make us feel?
Then there's Don and his young bride, Megyn. She wants to act, she's treated like chattel at the audition, and he's terrified that she's going to abandon him for her career. Their fights are so much more awesome than Don and Betty's because they know each other's secrets, they're at way different points in their lives and they are both New York City sophisticates. It feels like real adult fights - not TV adult fights. A little S&Mish at times, which fits with the era. Just as the Europeans were refinding the Marquis de Sade in literature and theatre.
If there's a project to this season it has to be revealed in the final two episodes. This year's theme, according to creator Weiner, is "Every man for himself." So will Don we left isolated - by Peggy, estranged from Joan by the knowledge of what she did and his adamant opposition to it, by Megyn getting the out-of-town rehearsals and previews gig?
We've had seasons with "the return of Don Draper" as the project. Often with a diminishment of marital or family life. Would that be a retread? Or is there something deeper planned?
My pet theory: at the end of the season, Don quits. Maybe goes West to design surfboards. Maybe becomes the perfect mix on Don Draper and Dick Whitman. Maybe quits being Don Draper.
More on Game of Thrones to come. And if you think this season is big, the third book is oft considered the best.
Enjoy this time of plenty. Over the next two weeks, it ends.
Thursday, May 24, 2012
A former convenience store worker confessed to luring 6-year-old Etan Patz from his school bus stop in 1979 and choking him to death in a basement, police said Thursday, ending a three-decades long investigation into one of the nation's most baffling missing-children cases.Just one child? Did he really only do this once? Makes it all the more incomprehensible.
Pedro Hernandez, 51, of Maple Shade, N.J., was arrested on a murder charge after he told police he promised the boy a soda, took him to his store – just blocks from Etan's lower Manhattan home – and killed him there, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said.
Hernandez told police he put Etan's body in some trash about a block from the store, Kelly said, where it's possible it was picked up by sanitation crews.
Hernandez was questioned by police for more than three hours after he was picked up in New Jersey Wednesday, and gave police a signed confession, Kelly said. His motive was not yet clear.
Let's just hope the really got the right guy.
Tuesday, May 22, 2012
Ah, Willard. How do you know he's lying? His lips are moving. And then, of course, sometimes he laughs:
WTF with that? Garry Wills has some thoughts:
Everyone has noticed by now the non-laugh laugh of Mitt Romney, a kind of half-stifled barking. But what does it mean? It is blurted out as abruptly as it is broken off. Is it a kind of punctuation, part comma, part full stop, part interrogatory mark? What, if anything, is it trying to convey? Why does it seem more like coughing or burping than laughter?
Does it mean: “I know you are saying something critical about me, and I don’t know how to answer it, so I’ll just pretend that you did not mean it seriously”?
Or: “I want to show I am just a regular fellow, so I’ll try out my regular-fellow laugh”?
Or: “I hope you will take what I just said as something humorous, though I doubt it, but I’ll see if I can start a laughing chain reaction”?
Or: “I want to change the subject, but there is no natural way to do that, so I’ll just throw in this comic rictus as a non-sequitur”?
Or: “The Cheshire Cat could evanesce by leaving just a smile behind, so maybe I can avoid attention by disappearing away from my laugh”?
James Lipton has some ideas how Mitt can "fix" it:
He is so obviously "acting" after all.
Sunday, May 20, 2012
Iran's parliament on Thursday approved President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's $462 billion annual budget, the official IRNA news agency reported, a drop in real terms from last year as international sanctions took their toll.
Iran's currency has lost much of its value in recent months due to sanctions designed to curb the Islamic Republic's nuclear program, which the West suspects is a cover for making atomic bombs, a charge Tehran denies.
The value of the rial began to slip in January, after U.S. President Barack Obama imposed fresh sanctions against the country's central bank and speculation rose over a possible military strike against Iran by Israel and the United States.
The European Union has also toughened financial sanctions and on January 23 placed a ban on Iranian oil imports, but gave companies until July 1 to wind down their existing business. ...
Tehran resumed nuclear talks with major powers in mid-April after more than a year and a second round of talks is scheduled for May 23 in Baghdad.
The country is undergoing what the government has called major economic surgery, in the form of cuts to the multi-billion dollar subsidies which for years have held down the price of essential goods like fuel and food.
Inflation is now officially running at about 20 per cent, although economists say prices of the goods most Iranians worry about are rising at a much faster rate.
"This budget will deflate the economy. To have what is almost zero growth with a growing population like Iran's, in real terms the country is going to contract severely. It is a truly bad situation," added Emadi.
Once again...underestimated by his opponents.
Thursday, May 17, 2012
QUESTION: “When you did an interview with Sean Hannity in February, you said that you believed that Obama is trying to make America a less Christian nation. It was responding to quote that he had just played for you on the radio. Do you stand by that? And do you believe that President Obama’s world view was shaped by Reverend Wright and do you see evidence of that in his policies?”
ROMNEY: “I’m not familiar precisely with what I said, but I’ll stand by what I said, whatever it was.”Looks like that line will join the other Romney gaffest-hits, like "Etch-a-Sketch," "Corporations are People," "I like firing people," "I'll be you $10,000," "severe Conservative" and so many more. You're sure to be seeing this clip again:
He's been lying so much, it looks like truth to him.
Wednesday, May 16, 2012
Ezra Klein says...it's unconstitutional:
In 1806, the Senate, on the advice of Aaron Burr, tried to clean up its rule book, which was thought to be needlessly complicated and redundant. One change it made was to delete something called “the previous question” motion. That was the motion senators used to end debate on whatever they were talking about and move to the next topic. Burr recommended axing it because it was hardly ever used. Senators were gentlemen. They knew when to stop talking.
That was the moment the Senate created the filibuster. But nobody knew it at the time. It would be three more decades before the first filibuster was mounted — which meant it was five decades after the ratification of the Constitution. “Far from being a matter of high principle, the filibuster appears to be nothing more than an unforeseen and unintended consequence of the elimination of the previous question motion from the rules of the Senate,” Bondurant writes.
And even then, filibusters were a rare annoyance. Between 1840 and 1900, there were 16 filibusters. Between 2009 and 2010, there were more than 130. But that’s changed. Today, Majority Leader Harry Reid says that “60 votes are required for just about everything.”
At the core of Bondurant’s argument is a very simple claim: This isn’t what the Founders intended. The historical record is clear on that fact. The framers debated requiring a supermajority in Congress to pass anything. But they rejected that idea.
He goes on to talk about how the Framers were against a supermajority being used just to humiliate the President and block all his initiatives. Sound familiar.
Somebody take this to the Supreme Court...ASAP.
Monday, May 14, 2012
Meanwhile, in the African-American community, a leading heterosexual comes out in favor of Obama's stance:
"I feel that I no longer wish to support your presidential campaign and ask you that you please return the maximum contribution that I gave to you last year," Bill White wrote in a letter to Romney, according to a report by CNN. "You have chosen to be on the wrong side of history and I do not support your run for president any longer."
White, a registered independent who runs a New York-based consulting firm, had given $2,500 to the Romney campaign.
White made his decision following Obama's announcement last week that he supports same-sex marriage. While he clarified to CNN that he does not agree with the president on fiscal issues, White said that Romney's speech during Liberty University's commencement on Saturday led him to believe that Romney would press for a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage -- a position that White simply cannot support.
"I feel like [Romney has] declared war on my marriage," White said. "And I could just sit back and not say anything. Or I could do something about it. And I've chosen to do something about it."
Hopefully Jay-Z's influence will be felt far and wide on this issue.
“I’ve always thought it as something that was still holding the country back,” Jay-Z said, referencing the fact that same-sex marriage is not recognized nationwide. “What people do in their own homes is their business and you can choose to love whoever you love. That’s their business. It's no different than discriminating against blacks. It’s discrimination plain and simple.”
Though he was in Philadelphia to appear alongside Mayor Michael Nutter and announce a two-day music festival in early September, Jay-Z sat down with CNN's Poppy Harlow to chat about broader issues. When he was asked if he felt Obama's decision to come out in favor of the right of same-sex couples to marry would cost him votes (particularly with the African-American community), he shrugged. "It's really not about votes," he said. "It's about people."
Meanwhile, the Obama campaign - NOT a surrogate PAC - released this ad straight out of Karl Rove's handbook, attacking his opponent's supposed strength:
Ju-jitsu, Mr. Rove. And nice branding for Mr. Romney.
Sunday, May 13, 2012
Donald “Duck” Dunn, the bassist who helped create the gritty Memphis soul sound at Stax Records in the 1960s as part of the legendary group Booker T. and the MGs and contributed to such classics as “In the Midnight Hour,” ‘’Hold On, I’m Coming” and “Sitting on the Dock of the Bay,” died Sunday at 70.Dunn, whose legacy as one of the most respected session musicians in the business also included work with John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd’s Blues Brothers as well as with Levon Helm, Eric Clapton, Neil Young and Bob Dylan, died while on tour in Tokyo.News of his death was posted on the Facebook site of his friend and fellow musician Steve Cropper, who was on the same tour. Cropper said Dunn died in his sleep.
Cropper left to become a session player at Stax, the Memphis record company that would become known for its soul recordings and artists such as Otis Redding, Sam and Dave, Isaac Hayes and the Staples Singers.
Dunn soon followed Cropper and joined the Stax house band, also known as Booker T. and the MGs.
It was one of the first racially integrated soul groups, with two whites (Dunn on bass and Cropper on guitar) and two blacks (Booker T. Jones on organ and Al Jackson on drums), and was later inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
“I would have liked to have been on the road more, but the record company wanted us in the studio. Man, we were recording almost a hit a day for a while there,” Dunn said.
Dunn once said that he and Cropper were “like married people.”
“I can look at him and know what he’ll order for dinner,” he said. “When we play music together we both know where we’re going.”
Friday, May 11, 2012
Wednesday, May 09, 2012
Tuesday, May 08, 2012
As the tweet from McSweeney's said, "We'll be roaring our terrible roars today."
The popular children's book author wrote "Where The Wild Things Are" in 1963. He won a Caldecott Medal for the book in 1964, and was adapted into a movie in 2009.
According to The New York Times, a posthumous picture book, "My Brother's Book," is scheduled to be published in February 2013.
Sendak also created costumes for ballets and staged operas, including the Czech opera "Brundibar," which he also put on paper with collaborator Pulitzer-winning playwright Tony Kushner in 2003.
He designed the Pacific Northwest Ballet's "Nutcracker" production that later became a movie shown on television, and he served as producer of various animated TV series based on his illustrations, including "Seven Little Monsters," "George and Martha" and "Little Bear."
"I write books as an old man, but in this country you have to be categorized, and I guess a little boy swimming in the nude in a bowl of milk (as in `In the Night Kitchen') can't be called an adult book," he told The Associated Press in 2003.
"So I write books that seem more suitable for children, and that's OK with me. They are a better audience and tougher critics. Kids tell you what they think, not what they think they should think."
During that 2003 interview, Sendak also said he felt as if he were part of a dying breed of illustrators who approached their work as craftsmen. "I feel like a dinosaur. There are a few of us left. (We) worked so hard in the `50s and `60s but some have died and computers pushed others out."
"Kids don't know about best sellers," he said. "They go for what they enjoy. They aren't star chasers and they don't suck up. It's why I like them."
I've read a zillion of your books, Maurice, and used to eagerly anticipate each new Little Bear volume as it came out, while eating my Chicken Soup with Rice. Thanks for making all our childhoods -- and adulthoods -- all that much more imaginative and grand, and please R.I.P.
Monday, May 07, 2012
In the meantime, that pesky Al-Qaeda has evidently been foiled again:
According to the media reports, Netanyahu forged an agreement with opposition leader Shaul Mofaz of Kadima shortly before parliament was set to vote to disperse.
Parliament Speaker Reuven Rivlin, a veteran of Israeli politics, said he had never seen such a last-minute political upheaval. “This is good for Israel because it brings stability, he said on Army Radio as he left parliament before sunrise.
The appointment of Mofaz, a former military chief and defense minister, is significant in Israel’s standoff with Iran, as he has been a vocal critic of Israel striking Iran’s nuclear sites on its own.
The CIA and overseas intelligence partners disrupted an al-Qaeda plot to blow up civilian aircraft using an advanced explosive device designed by the terrorist network’s affiliate in Yemen, U.S. officials said Monday.Does Obama have another foreign policy or anti-terrorism success to achieve before the November election?
U.S. officials said the FBI is examining the device — modeled on the “underwear bomb” used in an attempt to bring down a Detroit-bound airliner on Christmas Day 2009 — to determine whether airport security systems would have detected it.
U.S. officials said the CIA and other agencies tracked the plot for about a month before moving to seize the device in recent days in the Middle East outside Yemen, where the bomb was built.
Sunday, May 06, 2012
Friday, May 04, 2012
Wednesday, May 02, 2012
Tuesday, May 01, 2012
Richard Grenell, the openly gay spokesman recently hired to sharpen the foreign policy message of Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign, has resigned in the wake of a full-court press by anti-gay conservatives.
In a statement obtained by Right Turn, Grenell says:I have decided to resign from the Romney campaign as the Foreign Policy and National Security Spokesman. While I welcomed the challenge to confront President Obama’s foreign policy failures and weak leadership on the world stage, my ability to speak clearly and forcefully on the issues has been greatly diminished by the hyper-partisan discussion of personal issues that sometimes comes from a presidential campaign. I want to thank Governor Romney for his belief in me and my abilities and his clear message to me that being openly gay was a non-issue for him and his team.
According to sources familiar with the situation, Grenell decided to resign after being kept under wraps during a time when national security issues, including the president’s ad concerning Osama bin Laden, had emerged front and center in the campaign.
During the two weeks after Grenell’s hiring was announced the Romney campaign did not put Grenell out to comment on national security matters and did not use him on a press foreign policy conference call. Despite the controversy in new media and in conservative circles, there was no public statement of support for Grenell by the campaign and no supportive social conservatives were enlisted to calm the waters.As I've written before, Romney is not a leader in the true sense. He appear incapable to taking a position unpopular to his base, making a convincing moral case, and either turning them around to his point of view or at least earning widespread respect for his rectitude. He's a loser, not a leader.
Per Josh Marshall, this is Romney playing into "bitch-slap politics" without the Obama campaign even having to try that hard:
Or more simply, as Obama campaign's Stephanie Cutter tweeted out:
The Obama campaign has spent days hammering the claim that Mitt lacked the fortitude to make the risky choice to launch a commando raid to kill Osama bin Laden. Either it was that he said it wasn’t sufficiently important or that he said he wouldn’t violate Pakistani sovereignty to launch such an attack. In either case, the core message was ‘I was right; he was wrong.’ But as I’ve argued, the ferocity of the attack itself was meant to diminish Romney as weak and helpless, a man unable to properly defend himself.
Against that backdrop, the sudden resignation of Romney’s new foreign policy spokesman Richard Grenell came at just the wrong time since it told just the same story about Romney as the Obama campaign has been telling all week: Romney is weak.
“It’s going to be difficult for Romney to take other steps like this. And that’s what’s really frightening to me,” Fred Karger, openly gay Republican candidate for president told TPM. “It’s just too tough to stand up to these groups because they have a lot of money and power. You’ve got to be able to do that, that’s leadership.”
In other words, Romney’s actions have spoken louder than his awkward replies to the original bin Laden smackdown. In the face of attacks meant to show he can’t stand up to Osama bin Laden, Romney shows he can’t stand down the far-right homophobes in his own party.
“How can voters trust Romney to stand up to the Soviets & Czechoslovakia if he's folding to rt wing on hiring gay staff?Americans don't vote for weakies for President. There's still a canyon of time to fill between now and November 6th, so maybe Mitt can turn it around, but I believe this early imprinting is just the beginning of what's really going to fill the airwaves and, as I predicted months ago, Mitt Romney will make Bob Dole look like a winner.
Monday, April 30, 2012
How could America not re-elect this President?
The Obama campaign ticks off a list of accomplishments that they presumably think is aimed straight for the heart, mind, and gut of the electorate. Each one rotates up on a panel, one of them every 2.5 seconds. 32 of them over 80 seconds. Here's the entire list:o 4.2 million jobs saved
o cut taxes for 160 million Americans
o Wall Street reform passed
o 18 tax cuts for small businesses
o Unfair credit card fees eliminated
o 466,000 new manufacturing jobs
o $1 Trillion in spending cuts
o Protected reproductive rights
o Stem cell research funded
o Fuel efficiency standards doubling
o U.S. oil production at 8-year high
o Natural gas production at all-time high
o Renewable energy production at 27%
o First Latina Supreme Court Justice appointed
o $100 billion invested in science and research
o Iraq War ended
o Libya liberated
o Osama bin Laden dead
o Incentives to hire unemployed Veterans
o "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" ended
o Unemployment benefits extended
o Equal Pay for women protected
o Health care reform passed
o Seniors' drug costs lowered
o College Pell Grants doubled
o Guaranteed coverage for contraception
o Medicare and Social Security protected
o Auto industry saved
Sunday, April 29, 2012
"I think sometimes you listen to the Romney campaign and they do think a lot people in this country are stupid," Gibbs told NBC's David Gregory. "Their message is: You didn't clean up our mess fast enough."
More direct swipes at Romney and the failed GOP philosophy of governance:
"The last six months of the Bush administration, we lost three and half million jobs. We know this about Mitt Romney: He's not a job creator. When he was governor of Massachusetts, they were 47th out of 50 in job creation. His experience is in downsizing, outsourcing jobs and bankrupting companies and walking away with a lot of money for himself."
Gibbs added: "His economic ideas are the failed economic ideas that we tried for eight years, tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires, and letting Wall Street going back to writing the rules all over again. That is the policies that got us into this mess."
Thomas E. Mann and Norman Ornstein of two different institutes with two different political bents have joined forces to actually tell the truth: the reason our political system is so frustratingly polarized is almost entirely the fault of the modern-day Republican Party:
We have been studying Washington politics and Congress for more than 40 years, and never have we seen them this dysfunctional. In our past writings, we have criticized both parties when we believed it was warranted. Today, however, we have no choice but to acknowledge that the core of the problem lies with the Republican Party.
The GOP has become an insurgent outlier in American politics. It is ideologically extreme; scornful of compromise; unmoved by conventional understanding of facts, evidence and science; and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition.
When one party moves this far from the mainstream, it makes it nearly impossible for the political system to deal constructively with the country’s challenges.
“Both sides do it” or “There is plenty of blame to go around” are the traditional refuges for an American news media intent on proving its lack of bias, while political scientists prefer generality and neutrality when discussing partisan polarization. Many self-styled bipartisan groups, in their search for common ground, propose solutions that move both sides to the center, a strategy that is simply untenable when one side is so far out of reach.
Or, as Jimmy Kimmel put it at the White House Press Correspondents dinner on Saturday:
I have my own theory about President Lincoln's death. I think John Wilkes Booth was innocent. I don't even think it was an assassination. I believe that Abraham Lincoln had a vision about what the Republican party would become in 150 years, and he shot himself."
Let's hope America is less self-destructive in November.
Thursday, April 26, 2012
Of course, all of us should be honored to be listed on the TIME 100 alongside the two men who will be slugging it out in the fall: President Obama, and the man who would defeat him, David Koch.
Give it up everybody. David Koch.
Little known fact -- David, nice to see you again, sir.
Little known fact, David's brother Charles Koch is actually even more influential. Charles pledged $40 million to defeat President Obama, David only $20 million. That's kind of cheap, Dave.
Sure, he's all for buying the elections, but when the bill for democracy comes up, Dave's always in the men's room. I'm sorry, I must have left Wisconsin in my other coat.
I was particularly excited to meet David Koch earlier tonight because I have a Super PAC, Colbert Super PAC, and I am -- thank you, thank you -- and I am happy to announce Mr. Koch has pledged $5 million to my Super PAC. And the great thing is, thanks to federal election law, there's no way for you to ever know whether that's a joke.
By the way, if David Koch likes his waiter tonight, he will be your next congressman.
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
Monday, April 23, 2012
Sunday, April 22, 2012
1. The Republican YapperFull explanations in the DailyKos piece by Georgia Logothetis herself.
I had to block one of these, now she's making a pro-birther movie.
2. The Do-Gooder Slacktivist
Like my friends who think bin Laden isn't dead/was already dead/is in a prison somewhere/corpse being warehoused for science.
3. The Low-Information "Swing" Voter Who Consistently Reminds You Of How Low-Information They Are
One friend recently responded to a video post of mine with a slew of Mitt Romney lies by saying "All politicians lie." Low-Information false equivalency.
4. The Insider
Actually have some value. The Conservative ones I have a little trouble forgiving when they should know better.
5. The Future Candidate
Don't think I know any...but happy to support them if I like 'em.
This all ring true for anyone else besides me?
Thursday, April 19, 2012
Levon Helm, singer and drummer for the Band, died on April 19th in New York of throat cancer. He was 71....Born May 26, 1940 in Arkansas, Helm was literally a witness to the birth of rock & roll; as a teenager, he saw Elvis Presley, Little Richard, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis in concert and was inspired to play drums after seeing Lewis' drummer, Jimmy Van Eaton. (Helm went on to play mandolin and other stringed instruments as well). In 1960, Helm joined the backup band of rockabilly wildman Ronnie Hawkins – a group that would eventually include Robbie Robertson, Richard Manuel, Rick Danko and Garth Hudson, all future members of the Band.
The musicians broke from Hawkins to form their own group – their names included the Crackers and Levon and the Hawks – but it was their association with Bob Dylan that cemented their reputation. After Dylan saw the group in a club (either in Canada or New Jersey, depending on the source), he invited Helm and guitarist Robertson to join his electric band...Robertson and Helm were in Dylan's electric band for his controversial, frequently booed show at New York's Forest Hills Tennis Stadium. Afterward, various members of the Band played on Dylan's Blonde on Blonde and toured with him in 1966. (Helm left temporary in 1965, tired of the ongoing hostility from Dylan's folk fans.)
Recuperating in Woodstock after his 1966 motorcycle accident, Dylan again hooked up with the band that would soon be the Band. Before Helm rejoined them, they recorded the landmark Basement Tapes, and the Band's crackling, homespun take on American roots music began to take shape. Rechristening themselves the Band, they signed to Capitol Records and released two classic albums, Music From Big Pink (1968) and The Band (1969). Although Robertson was the Band's principal songwriter, it was Helm's beautifully gruff and ornery voice that brought the Canadian Robertson's mythic Americana songs to life. He was also one of rock's earliest singing drummers....
The Band continued for a while after Manuel's suicide by hanging in 1986, but Danko's death in 1999 of heart failure ended the Band once and for all. By then, Helm was dealing with throat cancer. After his recovery, he began holding intimate concerts in his combination barn and studio in Woodstock, called the "Midnight Ramble," in part to pay his medical bills. The low-key, woodsy performances became must-see shows and attracted a rock who's who; Elvis Costello, Natalie Merchant, the Grateful Dead's Phil Lesh and Donald Fagen were among the many who joined Helm and his band. The Ramble shows led to two acclaimed Helm solo albums – 2007's Dirt Farmer, which won a Grammy in the Best Traditional Folk category, and 2009's Electric Dirt, which resulted in a Grammy for Best Americana album. "This go-round has been a lot more fun," Helm told Rolling Stone in 2009. "Now I know I've got enough voice to do it."
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Sunday, April 15, 2012
Newark Mayor Cory Booker was taken to a hospital Thursday night for treatment of smoke inhalation he suffered trying to rescue his next-door neighbors from their burning house.
"I just grabbed her and whipped her out of the bed," Booker said in recounting the fire. Booker told The Star-Ledger he also suffered second-degree burns on his hand.
The fire started in a two-story building on Hawthorne Avenue in the Upper Clinton Hill neighborhood, shortly before the mayor arrived home after a television interview with News 12 New Jersey.
Five people were taken to the hospital for treatment: the mayor, a woman from the house and three members of his security detail. The woman was listed in stable condition at Saint Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston with burns to her back and neck.
After being released from the hospital, Booker recounted his experience at the fire and said he thought he might have to jump out of a window because of the heavy flames.
"We got everybody out of the house, but their daughter’s screaming, ‘I’m upstairs!’ " he told The Star-Ledger.
One of his security officers, Detective Alex Rodriguez, tried to stop him from going back in...."Now we actually get into a fight because his job is to protect me," Booker said of Rodriguez. Booker said when he reached the second floor, he was engulfed in flames and smoke.
"I suddenly had the realization that I can’t find this woman." Booker said. "I look behind me and see the flames and I think "I’m not going to get out of here. Suddenly I was at peace with the fact that I was going to jump out the window."
Then he heard her cries in a back bedroom.
"I just grabbed her and whipped her out of the bed," Booker said. The two made their way downstairs, where they both collapsed, Booker said.
Rodriguez, who had helped others out of the house said when he saw the mayor go in, he thought his career in protection was over.
"Once he went in, I said, 'Oh my goodness, this is it.' " Rodriguez, 39, said.
"Thanks 2 all who are concerned. Just suffering smoke inhalation," Booker tweeted. "We got the woman out of the house. We are both off to hospital. I will b ok."
Shortly after midnight, Booker tweeted an update, lauding the heroics of one of his security officers: "Thanks everyone, my injuries were relatively minor. Thanks to Det. Alex Rodriguez who helped get all of the people out of the house."