Monday morning mishmash

Hi guys,

1. Today’s schedule:

9:00 AM Jill Biden give remarks to the spouses of state National Guard Adjutants General.
9:45 AM PBO and VPB receive the presidential daily briefing.
10:00 AM Carney convenes an off-camera gaggle.
10:40 AM Michelle Obama and Jill Biden make remarks at the National Governors Association meeting.
11:00 AM PBO and VPB meet with a bipartisan group of governors.
12:00 PM  
1:00 PM  
2:00 PM  
2:10 PM PBO meets with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon.
3:00 PM Carney briefs the press.

 

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2. I’m pretty sure this is the strategy: Let’s make PBO complacent, but it’s entertaining nevertheless:

GOP reality check: Obama looking tougher to beat in 2012

Just four months after posting historic election gains, Republicans are experiencing a reality check about 2012: President Barack Obama is going to be a lot tougher to defeat than he looked late last year.

Having gone from despondency in 2008 to euphoria last November, a more sober GOP is wincing in the light of day as they consider just how difficult unseating an incumbent president with a massive warchest is going to be, even with a still-dismal economy.

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Much of the GOP realism is rooted in a long-standing truism of American politics – that absent a major crisis of confidence, it’s highly difficult to defeat a sitting president.

But aside from the traditional advantages of incumbency, Republicans are also fretting about the strength of Obama’s campaign infrastructure, the potential limitations of their own field and, particularly, the same demographic weaknesses that haunted them in 2008.

// more

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3. Allow me to say “AMEN” to Krugman here:

That Iraq Feeling

I don’t watch cable news, or actually any kind of TV news. But I gather that there’s a virtual blackout on the huge demonstrations in Wisconsin, except on Fox, which portrays them as thuggish and violent.

What that makes me think of is January-February 2003, when anyone watching cable news would have believed that only a few kooks were opposed to the imminent invasion of Iraq. It was quite spooky, realizing that hundreds of thousands of people could march through New York, and by tacit agreement be ignored by news networks whose headquarters were just a few blocks away.

And it’s even more spooky to see it happening all over again.

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4. Recovery!

Income of workers climbs 1.0% in January

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — The income of American workers saw the biggest increase in January in a year and a half, owing largely to a temporary payroll tax cut that took effect that month.

Personal income jumped a seasonally adjusted 1.0% in the first month of 2011, while consumer spending rose a smaller 0.2%, the Commerce Department reported Monday.

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5. President Obama toasts the nation’s governors:

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6. Finally, the president made a very short cameo at the Oscars last night, picking his all time fave movie song: As Time Goes By from Casablanca.  Such a romantic fool. :)

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Well, well, well, check out the New York Times actually doing their job

Over the past few days, the NYT published some excellent stories and editorials – finally exposing the Republicans true face. On Friday there was this great article titled The War On Women. Today, Frank Rich’s column about the true meaning of the “budget fight” is mind-blowing, but the cherry is the lead editorial, telling the facts about the crazy cuts those crazy people wants to make. Below the column, there’s this little note:

In coming days, at the bottom of this page, we will further explore individual penny-and-pound-foolish cuts the House Republicans want to impose, their lack of impact on the deficit and their real-world impact, often on the most vulnerable Americans.

Now, How about that?

The Ambulance-Chasing media really wanted a new Iran Hostage Crisis. President Obama didn’t cooperate. How rude!

Hi guys,

So, as Rachel Maddow said the other day, President Obama waited until the very last American was out of Libya, before he “dropped the hammer” of severe sanctions. Yesterday, the president went one step further, and said that It’s time for Gadhafi to go.

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama has called on Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi to leave power immediately, saying he has lost the legitimacy to rule with his violent crackdown on his own people.

With that shift Saturday, Obama dropped the careful condemnation, threats of consequences and the reminders to Gadhafi’s regime about its responsibility to avoid violence.

The president called on Gadhafi to step down for the first time, saying the Libyan government must be held accountable for its brutal crackdown on dissenters. The administration also announced new sanctions against Libya, but that was overshadowed by the sharp demand for Gadhafi’s immediate ouster.

“The president stated that when a leader’s only means of staying in power is to use mass violence against his own people, he has lost the legitimacy to rule and needs to do what is right for his country by leaving now,” the White House said.

 

Obviously, they don’t mention the real reason the president kept relatively silent during the previous week – probably because it doesn’t fit the narrative that this shallow, clueless, ambulance-chasing media wanted to build – but the public saw hundreds of Americans getting safely out of that hell, and nothing is more important. Maybe that’s why the president is back to 50%  in yesterday’s Gallup, and the media will  have to keep looking for their next “Black Jimmy Carter” moment. Good luck with that. 

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On a different matter, thanks, Jovie, for the link to this lovely slideshow from yesterday’s rallies.

Have a great Sunday, good people.

Rachel Maddow: Literally minutes after all Americans were safely out of Libya – The President dropped the hammer

Hi guys,

First, I want to thank you for the pouring kindness displayed yesterday. I hope this will continue to be a welcoming, productive and positive place for you to visit – even if we really don’t have to agree on everything. We are all human, including the president.

Thanks.

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1. Here’s Rachel, once again, being one of the very few people in the media still worthy of the title “Journalist”.  She can be a child sometime, but more often than not, she is the only one actually thinking out there, and after listening to Ed Schultz, one really learn to appreciate the difference. WordPress won’t let me embed MSNBC clips, so you’ll have to click here.

The president’s Executive Order regarding Libya Sanctions is here.

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2. Personally, I just can’t get over this Robert Gates quote:

“In my opinion, any future defense secretary who advises the president to again send a big American land army into Asia or into the Middle East or Africa should ‘have his head examined,’ as General MacArthur so delicately put it”.

Amazing.

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3. Billion Dollar, Baby:

 
President Barack Obama will file the official paperwork within weeks to begin collecting money for his re-election campaign in 2012, which will cost more than his successful 2008 run, top aide David Axelrod told CNN this week.

In an exclusive interview with CNN Chief National Correspondent John King, Axelrod said field organizers would begin fanning out in targeted states by early spring to kick off the campaign effort.

“You know, I think we can have people there pretty early,” Axelrod told King. “We believe very strongly in grassroots organizing. We believe that elections are determined not by … political decisions made in Washington, but by decisions that people make at the grassroots, and that the most effective salespeople for a ticket or party or candidate are neighbors talking to neighbors.”

Calling such campaigning a “labor intensive process,” Axelrod said “we’ll have people working very, very soon,” adding: “I think the process will begin in the spring.”

While he refused to offer a specific figure for the expected cost of the re-election effort, Axelrod did not object when King noted some Obama loyalists have suggested the cost this election cycle could exceed $1 billion.

In 2008, Obama raised more than $700 million in what was the most expensive presidential race in history.

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4. Good one from Booman:

Will Their Heads Explode?

The White House makes an announcement:

“The White House is set to make news and history this afternoon when it announces the new social secretary. Jeremy Bernard, currently the chief of staff to the U.S. ambassador to France, will become the third person to hold the job in the Obama administration. But he will be the first man and the first openly gay person to be the first family’s and the executive mansion’s chief event planner and host.”

Now, I could make some jokes about how much better the music is going to be, but my real concern is for Reps. Steve King of Iowa and Paul Broun of Georgia. Will their heads explode? Some people might ask who will be the first to shoot them, but that would be in bad taste and quite possibly merit a visit from the Secret Service. So, instead, I will inquire about their health. Do you think they’ll be okay? I mean, Mr. Bernard has been serving in France.

France!

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5. Yea, Sullivan is still on suspension from the blogroll after his lame budget-meltdown, but for those who didn’t see it, he had a very good piece yesterday about the president’s decision to stop defending DOMA in court.

….Meanwhile, the gays are ecstatic – a little too ecstatic in my view. Not to say I am not extremely gratified by the DOJ’s decision. Just that I recognize its limits. As Obama used to say: no sudden moves. But his legacy on gay rights is beginning to build into a historic one. Yes, I have complained loudly in the past. My loyalty is to the issue, not the president. But he is coming through – more cunningly than most of us grasped.

Which is not the first time one can say that on many issues, where Obama’s caution and incrementalism have begun to create a legacy that is deeply unsatisfying in the present but looks rather substantive from the rear-view mirror.

All I can say to Andrew is:

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6. Weekly Address:

3 Months, 1.5 million views, 1500 members, one adult in the room

Hi Guys,

I hope this won’t come across as too self-congratulatory (Just a little bit ;)), but i do think that we deserve a bit of a celebration.

It’s been exactly 3 months since I opened this place, certain it’s going to be me and couple of dozens people talking to ourselves. What happened since, is simply overwhelming. Right now, we’re just about to reach 1.5 million views and 1,500 members. In three months. I can’t even fathom the meaning of it.

So, to mark this moment, here’s a little video I made. I want to dedicate it to CR,  founding of Pro President Obama  blog. CR is a loyal, tough and incredibly humble supporter of the president, and she’s the one who gave me the push and encouragement to go on with this blog. Thank you, my girl.

I hope this video will speak to and for anyone here and out there, who is doing their best to provide this great president with a bridge over troubled water.

Thank you all for being here. I love you.