“What President Obama has done in two years on gay rights and other issues is just breathtaking”

Hi guys,

1. Today’s schedule:

9:30 AM PBO receives the presidential daily briefing.
10:00 AM PBO meets with senior advisers.
10:45 AM VPB meets with Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis, President of the AFL-CIO Richard Trumka and presidents of AFL-CIO labor organizations.
11:00 AM  
12:00 PM  
1:00 PM Carney briefs the press.
1:45 PM PBO holds a meeting with the President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness.
2:00 PM  
3:00 PM PBO meets with Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner.
4:00 PM VPB delivers remarks at an event honoring the life and legacy of Tom Lantos at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.
5:00 PM  
6:00 PM  
7:00 PM  
7:15 PM Barack and Michelle Obama  host music legends and contemporary major artists for “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House”; Joe and Jill Biden also attend.

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2. Recovery!

Weekly jobless claims decline to 391,000

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) – New applications for U.S. unemployment benefits declined last week by 22,000 to 391,000, the Labor Department reported Thursday. Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected initial claims in the week ended Feb. 19 to drop to a seasonally adjusted 405,000 from a revised 413,000 the week before. In addition, the four-week average fell to a more than two-year low, down 16,500 at 402,000. Continuing claims, which reflect the number of people already receiving state unemployment compensation, dropped 145,000 to a seasonally adjusted 3.79 million in the week of Feb. 12. About 9.16 million Americans were getting some kind of state or federal benefit in the week ended Feb. 5, down 89,782 from the prior week.

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3. Recovery!

Jan. durable goods orders up 2.7%

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) – Orders for U.S.-made durable goods rose 2.7% in January on stronger demand for civilian aircraft, the Commerce Department reported Thursday. The increase in total orders was very close to the 2.5% gain that was the consensus forecast of economists polled by MarketWatch. This is the first increase in durables in four months. Orders for December were revised up sharply to a decline of only 0.4% from the prior estimate of a 2.3% decline.

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4.  Here’s Professor Tobias Wolff talking with Rachel Maddow about PBO’s, well, “breathtaking” gay rights record.

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5. NYT Editorial:

Mr. Obama Moves Against Bias

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The president’s decision is a major advancement for protecting the rights of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Americans. It firmly skewers what has been bad law and complements the recent Congressional repeal of the government’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” prejudice suffered by gay men and lesbians serving the nation in the military.

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The reversal seems likely to redound into the next election cycle — a fight very much worth having. As a candidate three years ago, Mr. Obama opposed the defense of marriage law but would not endorse same-sex marriage, instead supporting civil unions for gay and lesbian couples. In December, Mr. Obama said his feelings on the subject were “constantly evolving.” Wednesday’s decision raises the hope that they are evolving in the right direction — equal rights for all Americans.

Meanwhile, it is stirring that the president has done the right thing on the marriage law. He has scored Congress’s shabby violation of constitutional rights that supposedly protect all Americans, not just a selected majority in an election year.

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6. Recovery!

President Obama’s Economic Report Says 2010 Marked Year of U.S. Recovery

The U.S. economy last year continued to recover from the worst economic crisis in more than 70 years, according to an annual White House report to Congress.

Though the economy still faces obstacles of high unemployment and uneven global growth, the report said the current recovery is expected to continue and gain stronger footing after the loss of millions of jobs during the recession.

“The economy has shifted out of rescue mode into the growth phase where we’re trying to get the growth-rate up and hiring-rate up,” Austan Goolsbee, the chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, said in a conference call with reporters yesterday.

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A major element of administration plans to ensure faster growth is Obama’s goal of doubling exports from $1.57 trillion in 2009 to $3.14 trillion a year by the end of 2014, the report said.

In the first three quarter of 2010, the report said, exports surged by 17 percent compared with the same year-ago period, representing “a significant step toward that goal,” according to the report.

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7. Recovery!

Trucking Stocks Signal U.S. Economic Recovery Entering New Expansion Phase

Companies that act as brokers for trucking services are gaining favor with investors as the 20- month-old rebound shifts into a new phase that’s less dependent on inventory restocking.

The so-called asset-lite truckers such as Roadrunner Transportation Systems Inc. and C.H. Robinson Worldwide Inc. lease vehicles for businesses that need to ship goods, so they have more cost flexibility than companies that own and operate most of their trucks. Shares of these brokers have risen 6.9 percent since July 30, 2010, compared with a 1.5 percent decline for operators including Celadon Group Inc. and Werner Enterprises Inc., according to two new Bloomberg indexes.

“We are way past the early cycle rally,” and now see “sustainable elements to the recovery,” said Benjamin Hartford, transportation analyst at Milwaukee-based Robert W. Baird & Co., who co-wrote Baird’s 2011 freight-outlook report. As the rebound matures, investors will find “greater resiliency” in companies with flexible costs.

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8. Dear Republicans, if you lost Goldman Sachs….

GOP spending cuts would hit economy hard

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — The more federal spending Congress slashes this year, the greater the potential drag on economic growth, according to a new analysis from Goldman Sachs.

In a research note, economists at the Wall Street bank estimate that the House GOP’s spending bill — which would cut $61 billion between March and Sept. 30 — could reduce economic growth by 1.5 percentage points to 2 percentage points in the second and third quarters.

Last week, the Federal Reserve forecast the economy would grow between 3.4% and 3.9% this year.

The drag would be less if lawmakers decide to cut only $25 billion, which Goldman believes is more likely.

Goldman estimates a 1 percentage point drop in growth in the second quarter but adds that “would quickly fade over the next two quarters as spending stabilizes at a lower level.” And by year-end, a $25 billion reduction would have “little effect … on the rate of real GDP growth,” Goldman economists concluded.

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9. Recovery!

 GM posts fourth-quarter profit

Culminating a year in which the venerable auto manufacturer launched an IPO, General Motors earns $500 million on revenue of nearly $37 billion for the fourth quarter, and sees 2011 off to a “strong start.”

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10. Nothing can escape him:

President Obama calls for freeing Cuba political prisoners

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11. Here’s something for all of us to spread:

President Obama’s budget priorities

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12. Man, I love Joe Biden:

“You have a president who I admired before I took the job but I have come to admire in a way that is hard to even explain. I watched this guy make incredibly difficult decisions every single day.” Biden told the audience. “I think you are going to see not only the United States but him sort of sprout their wings a little bit.”

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161 thoughts on ““What President Obama has done in two years on gay rights and other issues is just breathtaking”

  1. Okay this passing a Continuing Resolution for two weeks with all these draconian cuts in it has me completely bugged. I’m proposing an ‘easy yes’ question to use with family members, friends and coworkers to open the conversation.

    “Do you want the threat of a government shut down hanging over our heads every two weeks, or do you want Congress to pass a practical* budget that will fund the government for the next year?”

    If you get your yes, then let the person you’re speaking with know that the President has proposed careful cuts to social programs and the military and to every department of government that are sustainable and will reduce the deficit significantly. The Republican Congress, on the other hand, is holding Social Security checks and Military pay hostage to score political points.

    *Notice the use of the word ‘practical’. It avoids using the same language that the Governor of Wisconsin is using to describe his budget so people don’t make an association to what he’s doing.

  2. Joe Biden is a jewel! President Obama made the call about DOMA yesterday that blew my socks off!He really took a firm stand. It wasn’t political manuevering, as Lawrence O’Donnell suggested last night(cring)it was the right thing to do. Either you AGREE with justice for all, or you don’t. He does, and I am so proud that he came out like he did and spoke those very important words.I love this President of Principle.

  3. WOW, WOW, and WOW!!! BWD waking up to this really makes my day start with a smile and a lift in my steps. Most of this we would not hear of without your blog. I love the one about Goldman Sachs. People are starting to realize the Repubs don’t care about this country, they just want the rich to stay that way. Thank you to everyone who makes this place the greatest. Love you all!!

  4. Detroit is back on the White House agenda. And this time it’s got a backbeat.

    Motown Records will be in the spotlight Feb. 24 as President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama welcome Berry Gordy Jr., Smokey Robinson and more than 120 students for a tribute to the record label that bears the city’s nickname.

    An East Room concert that evening will feature Robinson, Sheryl Crow, John Legend, Jamie Foxx and several other musicians playing Motown classics for the first couple and the student group, including 10 metro Detroit high schoolers handpicked by the Motown Historical Museum.

    http://www.freep.com/article/20110216/ENT04/110216027/Obama-shine-spotlight-Motown-sound-Black-History-Month?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE

  5. A regular at balloon juice and at the orange place said that this was a political move to get reelected because Obama knows that gay people have a lot of money. The commenter was wondering why no one else was discussing that angle. It made me sick.

  6. The Obama administration is trying to push through a settlement over mortgage-servicing breakdowns that could force America’s largest banks to pay for reductions in loan principal worth billions of dollars.

    Terms of the administration’s proposal include a commitment from mortgage servicers to reduce the loan balances of troubled borrowers who owe more than their homes are worth, people familiar with the matter said. The cost of those writedowns won’t be borne by investors who purchased mortgage-backed securities, these people said.

    If a unified settlement can be reached, some state attorneys general and federal agencies are pushing for banks to pay more than $20 billion in civil fines or to fund a comparable amount of loan modifications for distressed borrowers, these people said.

    But forging a comprehensive settlement may be difficult. A deal would have to win approval from federal regulators and state attorneys general, as well as some of the nation’s largest mortgage servicers, including Bank of America Corp., Wells Fargo & Co, and J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. Those banks declined to comment.

    A settlement could help lift a cloud of uncertainty that has stalled the foreclosure process since last fall. Economists have warned that foreclosures need to proceed for the housing market to continue on a path to recovery. It’s unclear how many borrowers would benefit from a deal. Servicers have thus far had difficulty managing the volume of troubled loans.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703842004576162813248586844.html?mod=WSJ_hp_LEFTTopStories

  7. LOL, what? First of all, gays as all rich white males, or all wealthy, is a total myth. Second of all, the small number of rich gays who have expressed such disdain towards President Obama are unlikely to ever credit him for his achievements or be swayed by any demonstration of actual progress—these are racist and bigots IMO and aren’t about to give POTUS a dime. Don’t let that level of stupidity and malice sicken you. Let fools be fools; free country!🙂

  8. All those gay and lesbians that voted for the GOP because they did SOoooooo much for them, never dehumanized them or used them as political footballs…..yah, let them vote GOP in 2012 and see what happens. It’s real easy for the GOP to advocate for gay and lesbian rights when they are NOT running for office like the Bush girls and the McCains, in fact they will be running against it. They are no smarter than the folks who voted in these GOP governors and now have buyers remose (sorry but it’s true).

  9. Fools that they are. They have NO shame and will be exposed for the idiots they are.I am so proud of him. Like I always tell my kids,doing the “right” thing doesn’t mean doing the “easy” thing.He did the right thing.Talking heads be damned.

  10. Great roundup! To me the news about GM is HUGE! Remember everyone else wanted to throw GM and hundreds of thousands of workers (those in the industry and those who supply it) under the bus. President Obama was all alone in saying no, we’re going to try and save this vital American industry. Now it’s not only profitable, but the employees are sharing in its success to the tune of $4300 per employee in profit sharing. This is awesome.

    This morning the MSM didn’t think this was worth much air time. Shame.

  11. Its all politics, harry siad one month at current levels, then boner came in at two weeks at 4 billion in cuts.
    Posturing!!!

  12. Motown in the house!!!!! I miss Michael. Barry Gordy is the smartest man God ever created. God Bless him!!!!

  13. IF they have darkness in their hearts and mind, that’s all they will ever see.

    They are a bunch of hateful losers, they are happier being miserable and having something to complain about, then actually appreciating any good things.

    This is why they will NEVER be happy. Because NOTHING is ever good enough.

    I pity them for their stupidity and misery.

  14. As someone who reads up on all things related to this…I saw that, and it’s great news! Unfortunately for me, it will take too long to impliment to effect my family, but good for others.Those banks are going to be kicking and screaming and this will be a difficult lift….it’s the smart and just thing to do, but that won’t matter to the banks.They can do this the fair way, such as THIS proposal, or they can end up in court after court trying to defend their corrupt and illegal practices that they have caused themselves by outright greed…thinking their scheme to defraud would never get found out.More and more the courts, the states, and the people are finding out what lawbreakers these players are…and they’re fighting back.Maybe they will realize this fact, and take this deal. We can’t recover the economy unless this housing fraud is dealt with and fixed!Love to see a conga line of perp walks!!

  15. It’s a wonder that guy has a foot left after sticking it in his mouth so many times.He’s such a d word!

  16. On this…we can agree! Genius’….both of them! You can’t listen to Motown music and not have your spirits lift, or have your body move:)

  17. Does anyone have the email address for Lawrence O’Donnell? We need to call him out for lying in PBO. He did last night on his show and again this morning on Todd’s show saying PBO is waiting to see which way the wind blows on Wisconsin before weighing in and that’s why he won’t stand with the Wisconsin workers. He’s lying on the president who already issued a statement on “the assault on unions.”

    O’Donnell has turned out to be a sanctimonious jerk who thinks his years as a low-level senate staffer makes him an expert.

    The real problem O’Donnell, Tweety and Morning Joe have with PBO is that he’s smarter and has accomplished what they dreamed of and couldn’t do.

    If you can join me in letting O’Donnell know how we feel that would be great. And I have watched his show for the last time.

  18. I can’t believe the Dems are falling for it – $4B every two weeks over a year is $100B in cuts. Can they seriously not see the game Boehner is tryign to play here. I’m gobsmacked.

  19. All the more interesting given that CPAC has made the decision to exclude GoProud, by disavowing any affiliation of it with their organization.

    I believe the article I read said that Republicans won’t prevent members of the gay community from attending their events as long as they don’t attempt to promote LGBT issues. I suppose this means they want their support, as long as they remain in the closet.

    Twisted thinking…

  20. I don’t watch Lawrence O’Donnell’s show but I think he’s trying to position himself to capture a portion of Keith Olbermann’s audience.

  21. I mentioned yesterday that anybody who is pushing Obama to get more involved must be anti-union. As of right now, the unions are getting a lot of support, even from non-union people. The reason? The focus is on them, and all sorts of stuff is coming out about the real motivations.
    Additionally, this is a real problem, as it stands for the Republicans. They have been getting around 40% of the union vote the last couple cycles. That amounts to about 6% of the overall vote. Because of what is happening, that is certainly going to drop next year.

    All that assumes that Obama state his support for unions (which he has already done) and otherwise keep out of it.

    If he interjects himself into the specific debate of what is happening in Wisconsin, 2 things happen.

    The first is that the attention shifts form the protestors onto him. That is the last thing that is needed.

    The second thing, and long term more important thing, is taht a lot of those people who have been supportive of the unions also believe in states dealing with their own problems. If Obama interjects himself, it becomes a state’s rights issue, and the sympathy can change. Support for the unions drop, the Republicans regain momentum, and the future of unionism is bleaker.

    How stupid can some people be.

  22. Yes, gn, and since it is a free country, we are free not to mingle with them. The world is rife with fine people; why spend any time with those who encourage you to be less than you can be? I don’t care about these people, but I do care about how I felt when I “spent time” with them, as it did nothing to further my advancement in understanding universal creaturehood.

  23. We are all thankful to have a site that gathers the good news we do not see elsewhere. There is no doubt that President Obama has made great strides forward despite the fact that he began with the stickiest of quagmires.

  24. Lawrence O’Donnell fails my first rule of sanity — never listen to anyone who’s paid to talk for an hour. This is totally OT, but really fun and interesting. Even the comments are sane. I loved one that said “Everything is amazing and yet no one is happy.” Can be said for a lot of people, especially pundits.

  25. Good point, creolechild. I wondered why O’Donnell has changed to much since Olbermann left, but this makes sense. At least it can be said for Rachel Maddow that she appears to be sincere in her reporting, even though I don’t always agree with her analysis (though we are one the same page with values), rather than carving out a position to fill someone-or-other’s expectations.

  26. Right on, japa. I’ve become part of a group emailing (not always to my pleasure) of leftists regarding this, and I wrote what you wrote in response to the demands that the President be more involved (fortunately, other members of the group see it as I do). You have expressed it more clearly; I hope you don’t mind if I borrow some of your words?

  27. Cnn is reporting a Saudi American citizen. Has been caught making a bomb. His target was George W. Bush home and guards of Abu Grab

  28. It takes real talent to stand out as such an idiot within the crowd of idiots that are our White House press corps, but Chuck Todd manages it every day. The man is always wrong, always asks the most ridiculous and inconsequential questions and makes himself look foolish on a daily basis. You can pretty much bet on the opposite happening from anything he has to say. Perhaps we should start awarding “Toddy” awards for the worst political reporting prognostications. (Just like the Razzies for acting.) Of course we’d have to exclude Chuck Todd from eligibility or no one else would ever get a chance to win and there are so many in our media who deserve it.

  29. Feel free to do so. I won’t even demand credit. What these people don’t understand is the whole concept of the law of unintended consequences. Our President does understand that, and really tries to look at all options available to him, what the unintended consequences would be, and makes his decisions accordingly.

    You can bet that if he did come out more strongly, and what I predicted were to happen, then they would be blaming him for being too rash and not thinking things through.

    (I hope somebody at the WH is reading this. I wouldn’t mind being hired by them. But then, based upon comments at this site, I think most of us would be worthy to work with this adminstration. Can’t say the same about other places.)

  30. Reading Proud of Obama’s request for Lawrence O’Donnell’s email address reminded me of an idea I’ve been mulling on. I’ve just written to Linda at What is Working about it, but I’d love to share it here, too, since we will need skills I don’t have, and can’t even imagine having, to get it going. So many people are so fed up, but it’s such hassle to go and find the information and get the letter out, whether to a news organization, a person, a congresscritter, an advertiser, etc. So I was thinking a website could be created that would be a letter writing portal. It would be a community organized place, so that the first person to go there to write to LO’D would find his email address and enter it into the database. But after that anyone who wants to write a letter to him would just have to type his name into the letter address, and the email would populate. The site could be really simple — you just arrive and start writing on a letter form, press send, and off you go. Slowly the database would build up and be a great resource.

    There could be other resources, too, like information on the sponsors of particular shows, for example. Again, community created. But the main thing is to make letter writing a snap, because then more of us will do it.

  31. Newsflash: gays are people. Just like everyone. They have emotional baggage, some have good jobs, some have no job. Some are nice people, some are not so nice people.

    People. Just people.

    There’s also a significant difference between courting the vote of a particular block of voters because it’s the right thing to do and courting Wal-Mart and the Koch Bros.

    I’ve been in serious arguments with some of my gay friends over Obama. My good lesbian friend never liked the ‘black guy’ and thinks Hillary would have ushered in a gay utopia. There is nothing Obama can do that is enough for her. Other gay friends are celebrating Obama’s enormous strides toward civil rights for gays.

  32. Well said, japa. It sometimes seems like all the pundits want is for the president to do whatever will cause the most controversy, not what will help the situation at hand. There is nothing the president can do about any situation that doesn’t make the situation become all about him for our media. The last thing the unions need right now is for the attention to shift from what Walker is doing to whatever the president might say. He has stated his support and that is enough for now. Keep the focus on Walker and on the unions and protesters. That way we stay on the actual issue and not on whether the president has overstepped his bounds by getting too involved or how his involvement is polling and what it does for his reelection chances and whatever else the media is hoping for.

  33. Betsey, I love that idea. I would write more letters,etc but I never feel I know the right things to say. I would love to support any project in that direction.

  34. Love Joe B. as well — even though he probably meant the President and USA are going to SPREAD their wings, not SPROUT wings! Classic Biden and always said with his fabulous smile.

  35. HI Betsey

    I would love to add a letter writing portal to the WIW website. The idea of who sponsors shows it also a great idea.

    So far we have a web page with email addresses

    http://www.whatisworking.com/2011/01/email-addresses.html

    I also have 2 letters to the editor, if you have written a letter or find one online that is effective, please post that here.

    In my “non blog life” I teach Web development courses, however I teach the design courses, not the programming courses. The item you listed about type in their name and the email goes in automatically would be done by a programmer.

    I can ask the guys I work with about it.

    If you or others who read this have additional ideas for how this could work, please post here and I will bring all your requests to the programmers.

  36. Thank you BWD! Not only is this president a jewel He is brilliant. Professot Wlff last night on the Maddow’s show said what this president has done in just 2 years IT’s “breathtaking I hope the PL is watching and rethink their thoughts abou PBO and stop their garbage.

  37. Me too we will love to watch it, when it’s finish can somebody post a link thank you,
    thank you.

  38. All democrats, that is wise:

    President Obama on Friday morning will sit down with 13 Democratic governors to discuss policies aimed at increasing jobs.

    “The goal is to discuss specific jobs measures with the president that the administration and Democratic governors can work on,” said a spokeswoman for the Democratic Governors Association.

    Govs. Martin O’Malley of Maryland, Deval Patrick of Massachusetts, Bev Perdue of North Carolina and Jack Markell of Delaware will be leading a noon press conference after the scheduled hour-long 11 a.m. West Wing meeting. Other governors attending are Steve Beshear of Kentucky, Mark Dayton of Minnesota, Chris Gregoire of Washington, John Hickenlooper of Colorado, Dan Malloy of Connecticut, Jay Nixon of Missouri, Pat Quinn of Illinois, Brian Schweitzer of Montana and Peter Shumlin of Vermont.

    Politico-

  39. You are right and Obama has weighed in verbally and financially with his OFA PAC. They are the ones who have boots on the ground with knocking on doors and phonebanking and raising mmoney for support. Trust me, I am sure they got the approval of obama to get involved in this and he probably saw great opportunity to get his based FIRED UP for 2012, Raise money and ALSO help the labor unions all around the country. Obama is definately involved but not in the open. Trust me he is direct convo with all the top labor unions. I just don’t see him not involved in this.

  40. I watch selectively. Sometimes they have a guest Id like to hear and Rachel is amazing sometimes but when I hear bashing I turn it off.

  41. I totally concur and would just say that I found the best summary of how good PBO ‘s strategy has been in these recent crises:

    From PM Carpenter’s Blog

    “I had to laugh, because in this crisis, as in the Egypt affair, Obama only seems positively Napoleonic: “Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.” “

  42. I am so proud of the President for his stance on DOM. It makes no sense that straight couples are married everywhere, and gay couples have as Rachel put it “marriage rights that are like roaming cell phone coverage”

    You may want to read this article on a woman from SF who works for LGBT seniors who need housing and social services.

    Before watching this video I had not thought about the issue of senior LGBT, many of these folks grew up during a time when discrimination was very strong, it can be hard for folks in their 60’s and 70’s to reach out for support.

    http://www.whatisworking.com/2011/02/marcy-adelman-support-services-for-lgbt.html

  43. Huckabee has just taken himself out of the running:

    At an elegantly catered tea-time roundtable fête with reporters Wednesday afternoon, likely Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee said public sector unions ought to be entirely eliminated, or hamstrung to limit worker benefits and influence over elected officials. During the same session, though, he admitted that a life of public service, and running for public office, has left him without a sizable nest egg. In fact, he acknowledged that he wants to delay a final decision about the presidential campaign so he can put away more of the big-time private sector money he’s currently making.

    But just before offering a candid assessment of his own finances, Huckabee endorsed two policy measures — Social Security benefit cuts, and the privatization of Medicare — that would erode the safety net for public workers and others of modest means.

    http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/02/huckabee-eliminate-government-unions-and-slash-entitlements-for-poor-public-servants-like-me.php?ref=fpa#

  44. So utterly and completely true. And these are media spectacles designed to divide and conquer. Remember the polling report which had polled like 6 gay people and came to the conclusion that GLBTs abandoned Dems in November? This is all a bunch of foolishness; I shy away from letting the loudest screamers speak for entire groups.

  45. This is where is calling out republicans on jobs. republican governors are seeking social issue while democratic governors will focus on jobs. I am so glad and blessed to be in a democratic state.

  46. Totally agree. This sort of analysis adds nothing of value to my life. I give them kudos when they get it right, but other than that, they can bloviate away, then turn around and wonder why this country is so uninformed and has developed such a tolerance for news pundits who don’t keep it real.

  47. I’ve actually found that “rich” gays – do tend to be more republicans/independents – ie fiscal conservative/social liberals

  48. Sensationalists don’t do nuance and sensationalists don’t understand that there’s more than one way to swat a fly, and that going below radar and being subtle is very intelligent. They like bombast, theater, and spectacle. They mistake that for “action.” This is why Gibbs was so prescient when he noted that there’s a Professional Left, with mouths on microphones and a fauxgressive audience, and a Grassroots Left, with boots on ground.

  49. And this is why POTUS’ approvals are so high with liberal Dems: the people most targeted for this fauxgressive virus are the people who least trust the corporate media. The media gets a lot right, but they get a lot wrong as well for several reasons, including not wanting to be depicted as a “liberal media,” the profit motive which demands sensations and dramas in order to get traffic, and the bubble in which some members of the national media reside, repeating conventional wisdoms and imagining that large, profit-driven new media websites represent “the base.”

  50. When Gov. Scott Walker discussed strategies to lay off state employees for political purposes, to coordinate supposedly “independent” political expenditures to aid legislators who support his budget repair bill, and to place agent provocateurs on the streets of Madison in order to disrupt peaceful demonstrations, he engaged in what a former attorney general of Wisconsin says could turn out to be serious ethics, election law and labor violations.

    http://host.madison.com/ct/news/local/govt-and-politics/article_0657a7e5-a7ca-59df-abf0-3222b8c8ef98.html

    OOOPS!

  51. So true. It’s beating heads against walls at this point IMO. I remember this really prominent commenter and diarist who considers himself way to the left of President Obama’s supporters wrote this really sketchy comment about black people who use our race to shield ourselves from criticism when we promote anti-gay bigotry. It was a really ugly and baseless accusation of homophobia expressed in pretty much the most racist and demeaning way that this guy could get his hands on. People like this are not going to be talked into supporting the n***er in the White House, they’re just not. And they’re going to be as hateful as they can, because they’re licensed to express their contempt and rage against black people.

    It’s a free country, and indeed, we are free to keep company away from madness of that type. I say that this community is wonderful. Very mature and good-natured.

  52. Not to mention that Abercrombie has brought back alot of social policies that were canceled! Hawaii is a rich state, they can afford it!

    Go dems!

  53. Agree.

    If they don’t realize who is by now, come 5 March they will get a dose of reality that will include a different place of employment for many R’s come Jan 2013.

    BTW, Reid has made it clear he is fully aware of their scam:

    “The Republicans’ so-called compromise is nothing more than the same extreme package the House already handed the Senate, just with a different bow,” Reid spokesman Jon Summers said. “This isn’t a compromise, it’s a hardening of their original position. This bill would simply be a two-week version of the reckless measure the House passed last weekend. It would impose the same spending levels in the short term as their initial proposal does in the long term, and it isn’t going to fool anyone.”

    http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=8DB961C4-FF0C-49AA-9B20-BC9DDA1484F1

  54. Happy Thursday BWD Family~I hope its warmer in your neck of the woods than in mine! Most excellent mishmash.. also if you haven’t gone over to Chipsticks/theObamadiary.. do so and checkout chip’s info on the newest writer at Politico.. setting the stage for more race mongering.

  55. good, I really thought it amazingly stupid how much Walker spilled over the telephone.. shows how arrogant he is.. and how obliged he is to the likes of the Koch Bros.

  56. Good to read all these great comments. That’s why I come here. Even if the Senate isn’t going for it and the President won’t sign it, I still think we can benefit from getting ahead of this by starting the conversations with people now. I’m talking about people who don’t care much about politics to begin with, but who can be encouraged to think about it in a fashion that helps us.

  57. Rumors have him not running anyways. He is said to have bought a retirement mansion in Florida with a $3.5M pricetag. He’s also rumored to be angling for a M-F slot (I wonder if that could be Beck’s slot??)on Fox rather than his current weekender gig. If he runs he knows that the prisoner he let out of prison who went on to kill four police officers will dog him every step of the way.

    Now I could see him not running, and then getting tabbed as Romney’s VP candidate as VP’s are not usually the focus of attack ads so the cop killer issue would be largely not discussed. And he’s a likable and personable enough guy as well for the VP slot and could reassure evangelicals and the RR who would feel unease with Romney.

    This way he could bank another year and a half of Fox money, run for 3-4 months and if he wins he’s VP and if he loses he goes back to Fox.

    I think he’s mentally checked out of the political game though and likes the fat Fox checks. However I wonder if they’d still be there if he’s not a Presidential candidate.

  58. The Unions can take care of their own. They do not have all the money it would cost to educate and promote what Unions are all about that Wisconsin has provided. I am so proud how they have stood up and marched for the Union Members in Wisconsin and now Ohio, Michigan, Indiana and the other states who are responding each and every day.

    The President has done what was right from the beginning he said it was Union busting. He is the President and those closer to the problem must stand up for the workers. That the Congress and Senators at the state and national level. These are their people.

  59. Okay, japa, here’s what I wrote to the group in reply to a message whining about the President’s “non-involvement”:

    I understand your feelings, Will, but I think the President has made it clear that he is on the side of the protesters and supports unions. I do not think it will help the situation here if the President injects himself into it. I felt the same way about the situation in Egypt. He said what needed to be said in both situations without belaboring it, and in typical President Obama fashion, allows the people themselves to carry it forward, which is how we encourage others to take responsibility and become empowered. Change takes longer that way, but it digs in deeper.

    We don’t want the attention to shift from the protesters to the President, which it will do if he becomes actively involved. It is the people’s protest, and has much more validity for being so. We do not want it politicized as we need the support of middle-of-the-roaders also, and even as many conservatives and racists as we can muster.
    Second, some of the supporters, and union members, may very well be states’ rights people (most likely the racists), and it is best to leave this where it began, with the state. I have read that some of Walker’s Republican allies (Daniels, the Governor of Michigan) are beginning to shy away from him, which they might not do if the President and the Democratic members of Congress became actively involved. I want results not stances. We are a diverse country and many people have overlapping ideas rather than placing themselves firmly in one camp or another. We have to come together to a degree if we are ever to move forward to an enlightened democracy. At first, we may just have to concentrate on encouraging people to do research and think for themselves; that is a Herculean task in itself, but it is the only way we will ever have a more thoughtful and humane government.

    I know everyone on this list is on the same page in regard to values, and we are all “left” (or maybe just more interested in humanitarian causes) than the government. In political conversations with those with whom I disagree, I have always found it more effective to speak of values rather than of actual politics; e.g., do you truly believe people who work hard do not deserve to be paid well, have adequate benefits, and have some power to control their own workplace?

  60. Walker is a true believer and fancies himself Ronnie Raygun and is unlikely to be reached, the key is to break off three GOP votes from the 19 somehow.

    I hope the “Koch Phone Call” is getting much more play in Wisconsin than it is nationally. I also hope the one Dem Senator that Walker named has been questioned about his ties to Walker.

  61. Thanks Sheila. And that was actual the second time that I saw someone float around that theory; this other person came right out and said that black people have a “victim’s privilege.” Or the constant parachuting into SistahSpeak and “screaming louder.” It’s ludicrous, it’s licensed, and it’s just. not. worth. engaging. I’d rather hang around you, sheila, thank you very much!

  62. I should clarify – this is NOT based on any data or census information🙂

    It’s purely anecdotal on a personal level, having known some middle class/lower income gays vs upper income gays.

    So please do not take my comment as any sort of generalization. Just a personal observation based on friends,and other people in my life, and seeing the examples of Andrew Sullivan and the Log Cabin Republicans.

  63. Walker said he “laid out a strategy and was about to drop the bomb” when talking to his cabinet the night before the bill dropped. The question that should be asked is – Why didn’t he run on this? He obviously lied in order to get elected, if he’s such a true believer and thinks it’s the right thing then why not have made it the central focus of his campaign?

    I mean he’s only been in office a couple of months, so the “strategy” started from long before he was elected.

    Dems and unions should really focus on this aspect. Along with him being in bed with Koch and big business and what exactly his secret strategy was – to create a budget deficit with tax cuts to his business buddies and then blame the unions for it.

  64. I must go to pay my final respects tonight for my 90 year old aunt’s wake. I will miss the Motown @the White House. I hope someone with the skills can record it.

  65. Yup; he stepped in it bigtime. And the nonchalant nature of that conversation is as alarming as its content. Total puppet for big business and a thug too (stopping direct deposit for Dem state senators, etc.).

  66. That was beautifully said, much better than I can say it. I specially liked the line “Change takes longer that way, but it digs in deeper.”

    That is so true and one thing this President looks at is change that endures, not change that changes back in a couple years.

  67. Oh, and there’s definitely going to be a video of that performance posted to the WH website. It’s truly a terrific site.

  68. Once he actually declares, those go the way of the dodo bird. Which, the more I think about it, is an apropos comparison, considering we are talking about Fox.

  69. I get what you’re saying pinkbunny. And I agree, being GLBT does not automatically mean being liberal. There are definitely gay people who are socially liberal insofar as GLBT rights, yet pretty conservative about a lot of other things. GLBTs are very diverse in my experience as well.

  70. I concur with our VPOTUS!!! And I have always loved him when he was a Senator. I think that POTUS made a great choice in choosing Biden as his VP. They are a couple who just makes us proud, smile, laugh with love, and grateful that they are running our country. We can see that Joe has so much respect for POTUS. They have fun together as we have seen in the photos. I love it when we see photos of the two of them together, laughing, hands on shoulders, and smiling. Then you know these two are thinking of how to better help our country in a good way. See, you all, we have our POTUS and VPOTUS to be grateful for each day. I like their working relationship. Let us go to our santuary in our homes and light our candles, say our prayers, our meditations and give our thanks for these two wonderful men. These are the things that keeps us going also in this presidency. One more thing, a BIG THANKS to BWD for keeping us thinking in a higher level with great links, intelligent comments, and great clarity of how we move on this great journey. I have promised myself and told my neighbors in nice BUT firm terms, nothing will take the joy and wonderful experiences of enjoying this Presidency of Barack Obama. Nothing. They have backed off. You know some people just going around trying to be a pain, and trying for sure to take your joy away. Will NOT allow it. Be happy today!!!! We can handle the difficult decisions that POTUS will have to make. Just do not allow people to take your joy away!!! We might not see one of this greatestness again in our lifetime. Enjoy!!!!!

  71. Makesense4tulips;
    I smell a setup from the Bush Administration.
    Look at the timing of it. Think about it.

  72. I do not think they would vote for a repug.
    My biggest fear is that they will sit out the
    election.

    I have to admit it is amazing that gays and
    lesbians are being so incredibly irrational
    about what Obama has accomplished. (I am sure it is not “all” gays and lesbians).

    I would like to say to those doubters, what if some part of his reasoning has to do with being reelected? The point is, he is feeding his base. Is that not what they have wanted all along? This purity test is getting on my ragged nerves.

    I can hear some friends already saying, well, it is still on the books, so who cares that he
    has declared the law unconstitutional?

  73. I am with you on this Faith. I remember Dan Savage said during the primaries that gay men love Hillary.

  74. I get upset with them too, gn, because they make statements based on stereotypes as if they know what all blacks think about gays. They assume that we all hate gays, when nothing could be further from the truth, especially in my case. My first cousin has been a lesbian all of her life, and I’ve always accepted her, just as I accepted the right of thousands of my former students to be who/what they are throughout all the years I was in the classroom. When a gay or lesbian person goes off the rails with one of these nonsensical rants, I tune them out because they don’t really know what they’re talking about when they brand every black person in the country as being anti-gay. It simply isn’t true.

  75. IMO, the MSM is totally missing the point in the way it reports the news. They don’t realize that their ratings would soar if they would focus on hard news without all of the opinions from pundits and self-serving politicians. I live in GA, and I remember how popular CNN was when Ted Turner launched the network. I loved it because it was focused on presenting FACTS. Look at CNN now. It’s in the pits as far as ratings are concerned and hiring people like Erick Erickson doesn’t improve anything about the network. Ted Turner spoke about buying the network and running it again a few years ago, and I wish he would. It has to hurt him seeing how CNN has declined to the sewer level of news outlets.

  76. I read about it on MSN.com, and I was glad the guy entered the country in 2008 before PBO took office, and I was happy to hear that it was under PBO’s administration that he was caught. I can just imagine the rw Faux outrage had the guy been able to bring his plot to fruition.

  77. It’s just bigotry and worth ignoring IMO. There’s a slightly higher propensity among the black population to not support gay marriage which correlates with a slightly higher participation in organized religion. If people were truly concerned about it, they’d locate the actual cause of this belief, which is more closely related to religion rather than skin color, and tone down the stridency and engage people of another belief system respectfully. But if it’s not about end results and just lashing out against black people in spaces in which there are few black people and calling out subtle racism is forbidden, I really don’t see the point of being a part of such negativity which brings out the worst in everyone. Just not worth consuming or engaging IMO.

  78. And in reality, this is simply an ugly situation. It made me so sad and contemplative last night to read that Gaddafi’s daughter and I share a name, and that she’s begging people to remember that he has people who love him. That doesn’t make me any more sympathetic to a regime which attacks protesters in that fashion rather than honoring people’s desire to transition to a new government without his son as a successor. Just a tough, ugly situation. I’m glad that POTUS is not making the mistake of inserting the WH front and center, thus providing an opportunity for the regime to label the protests as an agent for the West.

  79. I saw Dan Malloy the governor of Conn on Morning Joe one day this week and he really gave it to Joe. Thought ol Joe’s head was goingto explode.

  80. I don’t consider anything too low for Murdoch, Ailes, and Samson to do to push the conservative POV and protect conservative politicians. That scum sucker, Ailes, was asked what the role of Fox would be in the Obama Administration, and he quickly replied that it would take the role of an opponent to PBO and the democrats. This told me all I needed to know, but the main thing it revealed to me was that Fox is not a news outlet. What sane network executive would state outright that the network’s job is not to inform the public but to push rw propaganda?

  81. Tien, did you see that the wonderful Tavis Smiley is speaking at Town Hall this evening?

    I am so sure he will be eagerly supporting our president. NOT!

  82. You’ll get no argument about that from me. I personally think he’s got to go and it’s no longer a matter of him saving his regime; what’s on the table is whether he’s going to take steps to leave Libya and try to save his life.

  83. Exactly. The remote may have some major drawbacks (inducing ADD in viewers), but one of its merits is switching channels or fastforwarding.

  84. No, japa, you gave me the ideas and you were writing spontaneously while I worked on that a bit since it is an email group and I had as much time as I wanted.

  85. Right now they’re all planning who will be in Madison when. I certainly don’t want to interfere with THAT. I hope to be there myself if it continues past the weekend.

  86. Yes, they did, Tien Le, and the weight of offense is certainly on Gaddafi’s side (didn’t his name used to be spelled with a “Q”?) However, I still cringe when I remember that we killed his children when we bombed his compound many years ago. Many wrongs still does not validate violent retaliation.

  87. I agree, his regime has always been an abomination. But violence begets more violence by validating violence as a means to an end, no matter how just that end; I would like to see him taken down by being forced out.

  88. Attention. But seriously, the log cabin Republicans have been around for years and have made no dent in the GOP’s inclination to use GLBT rights as a wedge issue. There’s no respectful collaboration possible IMO.

  89. Thanks for asking,gn. Talking to another lawyer today. Most concerned with getting the Mar. 10 foreclosure date stopped. Supposed to do that under an agreement made with servicer/AG of this state…so far, they are NOT abiding by that agreement THEY MADE! If I can get some breathing room with that, then I will think about the next step.All this takes money…something we are sorely lacking right now. Will keep you posted. Thanks so much for thinking of me and my family. You are so kind.All I can say is…I hope my son was serious when he said that he wanted to be a lawyer…he can help take care of his mother in her old age…these guys charge as much in an hour as I make in a WEEK!All good if it helps us…I just take one day at a time:)

  90. I think it’s Lawrence@msnbc.com….go to msnbc website and see if you can find it there. The shows are listed along the top of the page….next to Maddow. Check it out. I heard that too and it pissed me off.

  91. lilaf: ‘It takes real talent to stand out as such an idiot within the crowd of idiots that are our White House press corps, but Chuck Todd manages it every day.’

    That REALLY made me laugh, as did the idea of a ‘Toddy’!

  92. Although there’s a higher propensity among
    the black population about not supporting gay rights,I’ve seen a substantial shift over time in general attitudes about the issue.

    It’s been my personal experience that people are looking at LGBT issues differently because many now have family members who are gay or they work with individuals who are gay. That fact alone required stepping back and re-examining their preconceptions,
    biases, and prejudices honestly because the issue now directly impacts someone that you know, love, and respect. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work out that way for those involved but progress is being made.

    I have to say that I’m especially proud of
    the younger generation, who simply do not care about a person’s sexual orientation, which is how it should be.

    That said, it can be discouraging when the perspectives of some black people are framed as being representative of all. We’re not a monolithic group; we never have been. Our beliefs and values are formed by family, education, friends, economic status,
    gender, personal experiences,
    religion(or lack thereof), politics, and a host of variables…just like everyone else.

    When Pat Robertson, Mike Huckabee, or Ron
    Paul make statements about social issues,
    does anyone assume that they are speaking for everyone who shares their skin tone?

    Yet, the minute Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, Cornell West, or Tavis Smiley begin pontificating about “whatever” it’s automatically assumed that they’re the official spokesmen for black communities. NOT
    NOT!
    But why is that?

  93. ‘It sometimes seems like all the pundits want is for the president to do whatever will cause the most controversy, not what will help the situation at hand’

    IMO that’s it exactly! They have no interest, or insight, into problem solving in any given situation, because if the President is governing judiciously, where is the excitement and hoopla? Where is the ammunition to crucify him? How can they show their paper wisdom? If he won’t DO something they can pick at, what are they going to talk about? IMO none of these people really care about unions, Americans as a whole, or any of the serious issues; they have money and a steady salary and everything else is a ‘game’ they can bloviate (to use GN’s word) about. The fact that the President seems well aware of his responsibiliteis, and continues governing with intent and insight is a tremendous bonus as far as I am concerned. Nothing he does seems to me a game to him. When they say he acted on DOMA to gain votes it just makes me laugh. Why shouldn’t he gain votes from governing when he’s doing so in a way that seems right for the country? No one complains when the other sides gets its votes from excessive lying!

    President Obama, you continue to do what you believe is right, and we’ll continue to support you as best we can! I like to believe your support is growing day by day.

  94. You can say that again Proud. I cannot stomach the man. His favorite guests seems to be Jane the Dog and Adam Grinch.

    And I too believe he is trying to bring his numbers up because they are quite low. He has not been able to hold onto KOs numbers.

    Actually big red is tied with Rachel in stats. Pretty pathetic.

    I never watch any of them. I am so much happier.

  95. That station is going down the tubes. They lie just like FauxNews. The horrible hideous side of it is they are both trying to destroy our president.

  96. WIW, this is fantastic news. NathanK and I were discussing this on TPV. The critical part is getting people to participate. An exchange for spreading information out would be very, very helpful.

    I wonder how many people actually wrote a letter to Obama yesterday. BWD made it easy for us. We have to push ourselves to become a part of the activity. I am not blaming anyone. I am not doing anything to actually help our president.

    I am getting help by being a part of this a couple of other sites.

  97. Sheila and Japa, great comments !

    I too love the phrase “Change takes longer that way, but it digs in deeper.” Another version of the phrase President Obama says so often: “Real change comes from the bottom up” .

  98. I just suddenly remembered that Huckabee is a pastor.

    Easy to forget watching him, isn’t it ?

  99. Underestimating the solidarity of police officers and firefighters and their belief in unions was a huge, huge mistake by Walker and his republican friends. You don’t piss off those guys. They are well organized NATIONALLY. They have a great communication system. And if I’m not mistaken they carry some influence with the “white blue collar” segment of america, a group who votes more republican than democrat.

    Bad bad play republicans. You have made some traditional allies WAKE UP to what your real agenda is.

  100. Just like the tea party, GOProud is yet another group cover for racists looking to deflect attention from what really motivates and drives them!!!

    Yes people, there are quite a few racist gay folks out there and we know who they are!!!

    They will allign themselves with a party that loathes them and spits in their face as long as it serves to destroy President Obama.

  101. Hillary’s husband gave them DADT for which they attacked PBO for not reversing instantly!!! But don’t let that little nugget get in the way of their hate!!!

  102. The silly, farcical arguments which they struggle to use as cover for their racism bogusly works on the premise that gay=white!!!

    Are blacks not gay too??!!

  103. Diane Von Furstenberg ‘Embarrassed’ After Criticizing Michelle Obama’s McQueen Dress

    Fashion designer Diane Von Furstenberg says she is “embarrassed” after criticizing Michelle Obama for wearing Alexander McQueen to a State Dinner, rather than a dress by an American label.

    “I said that Mrs Obama has been extremely supportive of American designers, but clearly we were disappointed that she chose to wear a British designer for the state dinner,” she told Tina Brown at a Daily Beast-sponsored breakfast last week. “From there, I was so embarrassed that I am definitely going to write to her. She has been super-supportive to American designers.”

    Asked why Obama might have chosen a dress by a foreign designer, Von Furstenberg replied: “I don’t know. Maybe she liked the color! I’m sure she had options like all of us. Or she asked [President Obama], “Which one do you like?”‘

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/diane-von-furstenberg-embarrassed-criticizing-160066

  104. I can’t thank her enough for recognizing that things went over the top, and taking steps to resume fairness towards the First Lady. That takes a high quality person. We are all wrong at one time or another; what separates the wheat from the chaff are the people big enough to admit it. People just go with the flow with these nonstop attacks on POTUS and FLOTUS, and it takes a very big person to say, “wait a minute, this is crazy, I might have participated in the madness but in hindsight, this isn’t fair and I’m going to speak up.”

    Class act.

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