Tuesday morning mishmash

Hi guys,

1. Today’s schedule:

10:45 AM

PBO receives the presidential daily briefing.

11:00 AM  
11:15 AM

PBO meets with senior advisers.

12:00 PM  
12:30 PM

Carney briefs the press.

1:00 PM  
2:00 PM  
3:00 PM  
4:00 PM  
4:30 PM

PBO and VPB meet with Secretary of Defense Robert Gates.


2. Good one from Eugene Robinson:

The GOP wants Obama out, but offers no good replacements

For all their bluster about making Barack Obama a one-term president, Republicans are assembling what looks like a remarkably weak field of candidates for the 2012 election – an odd assortment of the uninspiring and the unelectable.

In part, this reflects a healthy respect for Obama’s formidable political skills. If Obama is likely to win anyway, some contenders reason, why spend all the time and effort of a campaign just to end up delivering a concession speech? Why not wait until 2016, when prospects might look brighter?

Still, it’s not yet clear what the political and economic landscape will look like next year. The recovery could stall, unemployment could remain unacceptably high, and recent elections prove that the electorate is nothing if not volatile. You’d think that a Republican with credentials and star power could give Obama a run for his money.

If such a Republican could be found.

// more


3. And Republicans just continue to gush over PBO. I’m still trying to figure what’s the evil plan behind this sudden love fest. 


4. And, they are evil.

The GOP’s job-killing budget plan

The Republican response to a new private-sector analysis of their spending bill: La la la, I can’t hear you!


5. The politician in me wish this Wisconsin drama would happen closer to next years’ election. 😉

NYT/CBS Poll: Americans oppose weakening the bargaining rights of public employee unions by a margin of nearly two to one


6. Keith Olbermann’s new blog. Not going to add him into our blogroll, though. Not after the way he treated PBO in his final MSNBC days. Still,  there’s a lot to enjoy there.

7. On the other hand, more real awesomeness from Rachel.


8. It’s not my fault that he’s pretty. 😉


120 thoughts on “Tuesday morning mishmash

  1. Am I first??

    BWD, couldn’t agree more that there’s an evil plan behind the Obama-love AND whatever else the Repubs say or do. I’m not about to decide they’re developing some sense!

  2. Good morning and thank you, BWD. No public events with PBO today. Darn! But let’s hope the CR gets resolved soon.

    Part of me is wondering if the right-wing thinks they can alienate Democrats by praising PBO. Jerks.

  3. YES YOU ARE – Congratulations!! I thought I would be at least second, but I’m afraid not…

  4. That might very well be their strategy. You know they will leave no stone unturned in their quest to make President Obama a one-term president. I think Obama and his advisors are well aware of their cunning, though.

  5. It is going to be a interesting day, with the Wisconsin deadlind and the budget due, and also their are Us Navy ships close to libya.

  6. Morning everyone.

    Businesses in U.S. Expand at Fastest Pace in Two Decades

    Businesses in the U.S. unexpectedly grew in February at the fastest pace in two decades, indicating manufacturing remains at the forefront of the recovery.

    The Institute for Supply Management-Chicago Inc. said today its business barometer rose to 71.2 this month, the highest level since July 1988, from 68.8 in January. Figures greater than 50 signal expansion. The gauge, which was projected to fall, exceeded every estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News.


    Wait, meaning, a US which actually makes things; who would have thought, lol!

  7. They want NO rules to be implemented under Liz Warren…. Oh POOH:

    The Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday will release a letter sent by a dozen industry groups to Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and leaders on Capitol Hill with suggestions for changes to the new consumer protections agency, including a recommendation that no rules be made under the current leader, Elizabeth Warren.

    Instead, the Chamber will say, any rules should wait until a director is nominated by the White House and confirmed by the Senate.

    Jess Sharp, the Chamber’s executive director for capital markets, will say that the Dodd-Frank bill “gave the CFPB tremendous power, with virtually no oversight. … If that power isn’t used carefully, there could be serious collateral damage to America’s job creators.”

    The letter will say that “issuing rules prior to the Senate confirming a director to the bureau will prevent Congress from exercising the one avenue for oversight that it expressly retained.”


  8. Although I must say that the “gushing” as described by Politico was not all that “gushing” and there were many subtle digs at the President.

    E.g., Obama gives long answers because he probably just “likes to hear himself talk?”

    That’s no compliment.

  9. Now the PL will chime in with pre-accusations of Geithner/Obama capitulating to the desires of the COC. That will take their focus off the happenings in Wisconsin and on to the President once more.

  10. Per TPM:

    Two National Progressive groups are testing the waters for an immidiate recall of the republican state senators in wisconsin!


    Ya don’t want to piss off the UNIONS! LOL!

  11. WH blog; if anyone knows any high schoolers, spread the word:

    Deadline for the Race to the Top Commencement Challenge is March 11

    The Race to the Top Commencement Challenge is back and we’re asking public high school students from across the country to tell us about ways their school is preparing them for college and a career. In return, we’ll make sure one high school has a graduation they’ll never forget – including a commencement address by President Obama himself.

    President Obama and our Administration believe education is key to winning the future. In order to ensure our long-term economic success, we need to focus on out-educating and out-competing the world. That means helping to prepare students today for the jobs of tomorrow. It means equipping students with the skills they’ll need to succeed in the 21st Century economy – encouraging them to be creative, to solve problems, to work together to design solutions to important problems.

    The Race to the Top Commencement Challenge is just one of the many ways we’re encouraging young people to actively engage in their educational success. Last year, over 1000 schools applied. This year, we hope to continue encouraging applications from students from across the country. We’re accepting applications until Friday, March 11 at WhiteHouse.gov/Commencement.



    What a terrific idea.

  12. I have never seen such dismay in our politics. Just where the GOP wants us, back to the 60s, when NIXON took over, with his culture wars!
    Sadly, if the Country and the electorate falls for it, history books will point to this time- as the rise and fall of America!

  13. Rick Perry is such a jerk. McDonnell’s words about looking the Commander-in-Chief in the eye don’t sit too well with me either.

    Then there’s Barbour, who may have been thinking that if he said something nice about PBO, the world wouldn’t think he’s a bigot or racist.

    BWD – KO’s blog does have some good stuff!

    Good morning, everyone!

  14. There have been too many gushes from the repubs/tpartiers. They cannot be trusted; there is always an agenda, there is no sense as we know it, only a direct path to power and control at all cost. It wouldn’t surprise me if eventually they bring in Jeb Bush for 2012. They’re pressuring: Father & two sons in the presidency. They’re waiting to give a time spread about Iraq/Afghan. People do forget and that’s what they’re counting on. Just like WI will forget about bully Walker. Oh no, this sounds pessimistic–just keep our feet on the ground, and watchful.

  15. More progress:

    FTA Administrator Joins Senator Reid, Nevada Officials
    To Break Ground on Sahara Express Bus Rapid Transit
    Project received $34.4 million from Recovery Act’s TIGER Grant Program
    Will Help Achieve President’s State of the Union Goal to ‘Win the future’
    Federal Transit Administrator Peter Rogoff joined Senator Harry M. Reid and local officials today to break ground on the Sahara Express Bus Rapid Transit, which will improve access along one of the busiest employment corridors in Las Vegas. The $45.2 million project received $34.4 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds earlier this year from the Federal Transit Administration.

    The groundbreaking comes just weeks after President Obama announced his determination to win the future by out-building, out-innovating, and out-educating the rest of our nation’s global economic competitors.

    “The Sahara Express is the kind of targeted transportation investment that will create good middle-class jobs to keep our economy moving forward,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said. ““It will enable Las Vegas to construct a modern, energy-efficient transit system that will spur local economic growth and development for years to come.”

    “The new bus line will be a magnet for new commercial and residential development along the corridor, which has been hit hard by the economic downturn, and will make it easier than ever for people to get from where they live in the Valley to downtown and the Strip.” Administrator Rogoff said. “Best of all, federally funded construction of new bus lanes, stations, and other components are expected to generate nearly 500 private-sector jobs in one of the regions


  16. Well…despite the GOP’s success with demonizing and busting up unions, something achieved over decades of mostly incremental measures, we are at a moment in which most of Wisconsin as well as most of the country is with the unions in disfavoring the current union-busting attempt. People are connecting the dots. We can absolutely move this country in the other direction, in the same way, as Dems started to do from 2009 through the lame duck. It’s going to start with empowering youth to come out for Dems in 2012 and defanging whatever set of purity spoilers is trotted out to try to capture the young, idealist, romantic set. We changed course in 2008 and can continue that work by disempowering a hindering GOP in 2012. 🙂

  17. Their goal of sabotauguing the economy while talking about the debt, that is only for cover.
    If they get what they want, as we saw in 1937 when Unemployment went down because of the new deal, then FDR got concerned about the deficit(with conservatives pressure), and the economy tanked!
    History is trying to repeat itself! Albeit, FDR got re-elected!

  18. POTUS will NOT do anything unless it is under the auspice of the UN!
    I cannot believe that everybody is calling for obamas help!
    And yet, they could not stand it when Bush intervened with military power!
    I dunno!

  19. This will all get put on the backburner, D.C. politics will take center stage- if they shut down the govt and or the debt ceiling does not get raised!
    It is part of their plan, to distract.
    Throwing the Kitchen sink, try bathtub!

  20. My favorite word of the week is “dissemble”. My handy dandy dictionary gives me this 1. To hide or disguise the real nature of, as feelings or motives 2. To make a pretense of, to hide one’s real motives, nature, or feelings under a pretense.

    I have had a unfortunately large amount of experience with people who dissemble and have finally learned not to take it personally, in other words feel like a fool. I am hopeful that I have learned to recognize the signs sooner, kind of like developing the “eye” to see morel mushrooms in the forest floor leaf litter.

    I’ll share a recent and relevant story that illustrates one of the “signs” that should not be ignored, the Dr. Jekyll, Mr. Hyde phenomenon. One day last week I called my new Tea Party GOP reps office to say I approved of the Small Business ideas the President was promoting and his budget and disapproved of the GOP willingness to shut down the government and ruin the economic recovery momentum. I mentioned I was an owner of a small manufacturing business. The aide was uncharacteristically nice and said there was no wish to shut down the government and they had proposed an extension. He invited me to come in to the office to visit with the Rep the next week and told me they didn’t support Fox news or the Tea Party. (Don’t ask how the conversation segued to those topics.)

    The next day I called back armed with the info that the GOP was planning a very short extension followed by a shutdown specifically to disguise their motives and shift the blame to avoid a repeat of 1995. The same aide was literally verbally abusive once he understood what my premise was. (Believe me I mean literally). A friend called the office the next day to see about arranging a visit with Rep. Bucshon (Indiana’s 8th) only to find out the invitation had to be bogus because the Rep wouldn’t be anywhere near Indiana this week.

    When I see a person present a reasonable, respectful demeanor and then flip into a belligerent, disrespectful one when there is a tough question, a legitimate criticism or there appears to be a chance their actions would be exposed I know what I am dealing with and no longer question my ability to self reference on this person’s true nature.

    Just like in developing landrace vegetable varieties in your garden, where you can select for specific characteristics, I actually believe that the GOP has been selecting for the ability to dissemble among their potential leaders along with other equally odious qualities. The objectives that the GOP have at this stage in history are so noxious to the average person that they must hide their goals. So sad when a President who has integrity and high ability is our current leader. Personally I am glad not to be living in the dark side right now and recognize a wonderful example of leadership when I see it.

    Thanks, BWD, for providing a setting where we can revel in our good fortune.

  21. BWD, it is not my fault that I have a crush on him too. Don’t tell my wife. 🙂

  22. Just the other side of the “forget” coin. I have read some really good advice for business folk (though it applies to everything, that trust is “priceless” and nothing is worth blowing that. One reason is that human beings absolutely hate the experience of being taken advantage of (that’s why denial can be so strong for so long) and once they conclude that it has happened as a customer or even a supplier (and hopefully as a voter) it won’t be possible to bring that person or company back. By the way it is very different than making a mistake and admitting it. For that we humans are remarkably and thankfully very forgiving.

  23. Hi all, I understand the WI protesters are shut out of the State building.
    Gaddafi may be gearing up for an attack on his protesters aka “Al Qaeda!” US warships moving closer. Talking about a no-fly zone which won’t do any good, and vague mumblings about an air strike against the Gaddafi family which would do some good.
    AJ is also reporting thousands of Egyptian workers are trying to get out of Libya on the western, Tunisian side and it is chaos.
    What a month 2/11 has been, and March to be the same?

  24. Good morning everyone. It will be interesting to see what will happen in Wisconsin today. Walker is suppose to give his Budget today. BWD, you can never show enough pictures of of President. I also like Keith’s new website. I am very disappointed in the PL at MSNBC. I was a daily viewer now it’s only after I check in here.

  25. All to keep the pressure on POTUS! He will NOT make a mistake, it is NOT in his character to be pressured into a disaster.
    Like, when LBJ just had to put more troops into vietnam, with NO timetable, then again, then a draft, finally he put in 500,000 troops.

    And that was that!

  26. Rachel is the only show I watch. I have said this before, I think she REally appreciates what POTUS is doing for the gay community!

  27. Well, the President answered one of the main complaints many Republicans (and some Democrats) have had about the Affordable Care Act. But, sure as sh!t, the Republicans are still not too sure about it and the Democrats are sure to complain as well:

    Will President Obama get credit for this? Unlikely.

    As usual, the Dude can’t win for losin’ (as my gramma used to say.)

    Enjoy and HAPPY TUESDAY!!!

  28. still, he can say that he did leave it up to states, that was his proposal.
    And with bi-partisan support, Scott brown is on board and is one of the co-sponsors with wyden!

  29. What kills me is they still will NOT hire, despite all the leading indicators pointing to a lasting recovery!
    They are either stubborn, have been told to do this, or it is all politics!

  30. There were Republicans, Democrats AND Blue Dog Dems supporting this. Therefore, the President will get no support from anyone on it. Or something.

    I get more confuzzled about what “true progressives” and “true conservatives” are allowed to support with every passing day. So far as I can tell, the only litmus test for hating something, a litmus test used by BOTH SIDES, is whether or not President Obama likes the idea. If he does, they all hate it.

    Wears ya down after awhile, I hafta say…

  31. Here is a must read brilliant post from The Reid Report on the Republican dilemma.


    Republicans have a problem. It’s not entirely clear if they realize it yet, but it is a very real problem. And what is that problem: people can’t stand them when they actually get in power.
    Well, basically, it’s conservatism. Conservatism is by nature, negative. It opposes things, like minimum wage and child labor laws, collective bargaining, old age pensions, Medicare, and spending. On that last one, the trouble for Republicans is that people tell pollsters they don’t like spending, but they also love the results of spending — public schools and libraries, aid to the poor, roads without potholes, mail that gets delivered to your door without a fee… Americans like the fruits of spending. Republicans keep saying they want to cut spending, particularly spending that helps children, old people and the poor – and while that makes for great campaign rhetoric as a general princple (before you get into the specificis about the children and the old people and the poor), when it actually starts to happen, people hate it.

    Which brings us to Wisconsin.


  32. So do I understand the format of the new CNN 8 PM show correctly? It’s Governor Spitzer with a different woman every night who is paid to spend an hour with him?

    Why does this sound so familiar?

    Keith Olberman-



  33. There is a terrific op-ed in the NYT this morning by Roger Cohen, who is usually quite decent. I started reading with trepidation, assuming he would find something wrong with President Obama, but I was delighted to read that he was generally praising the President’s handling of events in North Africa and the Middle East. Here is the link:


    So as usual my mood depends on how well things are going for my man Obama, and today I feel good.

    I also need to make myself get hold of Bob Woodward’s book called something like “Obama’s War.” I say this because I belatedly read a short piece about it by Steve Coll in the New Yorker (he’s another person I trust on international affairs) and it sounds like the book basically describes a President who thinks smart and hard before he acts. Not what I assumed the tone of the book would be.

    Now off to work.

  34. I don’t think that would work because it would just help warm indies to President Obama. I don’t know what their game is though, probably it’s a short game so I’d guess it’s a budget issue.

  35. Good morning all. As the calendar turns another page, our President just keeps navigating the choppy waters with skill and determination, never losing sight of the far shore.

    Regarding the Republicans talking nice about the President. They are taking a page out of his book. They figure if they talk nice about him (always with some caveats) they will create a divide on the left.

    Interesting piece on the CNN business web site this morning talking about how the Republcians are going to try to scuttle financial reform by cutting funding to the SEC and the CFTC.


    That way, when the financial reforms fail, it will be blamed on the reforms not doing any good. Not reading a lot about it in the MSM. Sometimes, I find the news of that site to be pretty fair and actually pro-Obama’s policies.

  36. By the way, if you have a Reddit account (you can get one free and instantly) you can uprate my Eclectablog piece HERE. That will get it more attention.

  37. No more 3M products for me. Seems the 3M CEO thinks PBO is anti-business. Well I am now anti-3M products. Here’s a link to their brands if you want to join me.


    Regarding the repubs praise of PBO: First, he is tough to beat. I caught a little bit of Morning Joke and they had John Thune on. Mika just gushed about how presidential he looked (not) and what a wonderful presidential smile he has (gag). They are so searching for a President Obama and they have none. Not in Jeb Bush or any of them.

    Second, they’re using the “praise” to criticize. Trying to send the signal that he’s a politician, or not sincere. It won’t work. They are liars and attackers and are not to be trusted or believed about anything.

  38. If they blast him all the time, it sort of loses it’s effect. However if they offer feint praises now, when they attack him on the budget/shutdown later they can say “I’m a serious person not an ideologue, look I even said nice things about him a week ago – but he blew it now”.

  39. BTW:

    Here in Tampa florida, it is Mayoral election day!
    Expected, is a republican to take over for a democrat!
    The democrat while in office, gave one of the most infrastructure friendly adminstrations ever!
    All of Tampa florida is retooled with new HWY..

    she did a good job! How does she get rewarded? By elceting a republican mayor the next term!
    I Hope not!

  40. They don’t say a damn thing about the GOP’s budget that would cost 2M jobs and lead to a depression now do they? Or speak out against a government shutdown that will put the recovery at great risk for that matter – they’re propaganda shills for the GOP.

  41. Correct, desperate they are!
    Alos, they jsut want 2012 election to be as good as 08, when ratings were through the roof!

  42. Nah ah! Obama ain’t pretty, he is handsome like a guy from a cognac commercial. John Edwards was pretty.

  43. Isn’t the rule they have had to serve for a year? So the new ones will be safe, as will Walker – but the ones up in 2012 could be recalled early.

  44. Once POTUS starts to campaign in earnest(it is what the republcians fear most) then, he can bring the truth to be told… He did this before, wnet right over their heads!

  45. I am going to be in Tampa next week for a business meeting. Keep it warm please.

  46. From a great post at The Obama Diary:

    Why Republicans are suddenly afraid of Obama


    Thus, the Republican presidential field for 2012 is now most notable for its lack of depth. No one, it seems, wants to be the first to jump in, and those who seem most interested in running have clear, significant liabilities. Meanwhile, potentially stronger prospects like Huckabee, Chris Christie and (maybe) Jeb Bush seem content to wait for 2016. Granted, what looks like a weak GOP field today could seem much different six months or a year from now, if the modest economic improvement we’ve seen recently stalls and unemployment begins rising again; then, even an underwhelming GOP nominee would be well positioned to beat Obama.


  47. Problem Bush will run into is that the last two Republican Presidents would have been Bushes, so it would look like the Republican Party is a monarchy of sorts with the Bush Family as it’s Royal Family.

    Bush Sr was Reagan’s VP, then ran twice as the GOP’s flag bearer for President, than after a midterm off Dubya ran and won twice, and after another election off it’s Jeb’s turn?

  48. Sounds like they were being buttheads to me. “look the commander in chief in the eye”? sounds like McDonnell THOUGHT he was coming there to confront the president about something (but we know he didn’t). Long answers to questions? Hmmm….we’ve heard that complaint from another group of dunces before (the press). What’s the matter Perry? couldn’t leave in the middle of Obama’s speech to go check your coif?

  49. ISM manufacturing gauge rises to 61.4% in February, the highest level since May 2004

    WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) – American manufacturers remained in a strong expansionary mode in February, according to a closely followed index. The Institute for Supply Management on Tuesday said its manufacturing gauge climbed to 61.4% in February, the highest level since May 2004. Any reading over 50 indicates that more manufacturers are expanding instead of shrinking. The manufacturing sector has now grown 19 straight months, outshining most other U.S. industries during that time. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had forecast the index to edge up to 61.0%


  50. They’re all waiting until after the budget stand-off is decided. They don’t want to be asked about their support of the Boehner budget, or want to be front and center if there is a shutdown. They just want to see how it plays out – if there is a shutdown, it could shake things up and give them a chance if the Dems and President Obama are blamed, however if Boehner cuts a deal and there is no shutdown or there is a shutdown and the GOP is blamed then they’ll pass and not waste their time in running.

    It’s being reported that all potential candidates are telling Boehner to shutdown the government – that’s their Hail Mary pass. A shutdown with blame going on Obama is their only shot.

  51. Local rally this sunday for me to go to:

    FEBRUARY 28, 2011
    Rally for government workers is Sunday
    A rally backing government workers against state cuts lists Public Defender Bob Dillinger, Pinellas schools superintendent Jule Janssen and Pinellas County Commissioner Ken Welch as its headliners. Sunday’s event will be at the Largo Community Center, 400 Alt. Keene Road.

    From the flier:

    We are a gathering of citizens who are concerned with Governor Rick Scott’s budget proposals and how it will affect the quality of life, services and jobs in our communities. This is a non-partisan group of people who have banded together and wish to hold a “Rally to Support our Public Servants.” Several groups we want to participate in this rally include: the judicial system, nurses, state employees, teachers, law enforcement, firefighters and other local public servants. Thank you for your support!

    Our Message: Don’t balance FL’s budget on the backs of Public Servants! Please email or call your legislator today and tell them to support Public Servants! Join us on our Facebook page at “Rally to Support Public Servants.”


    Oh, and POTUS asked governor scott yesterday to take the HSR, and he said NO! Fuck em!

  52. I don’t understand the hold Walker has over the rest of the State Senators. I mean he’s a new Governor, none were elected on his coattails, most have been there longer than he has and yet they all march in lock step with him. It’s like all 19 are ideologues just like Walker. I mean there isn’t three out of the 19 that say “Wait a minute here, Walker is nuts and going way too far”?

    I think Walker’s plan is to hope the Federal Budget issue pushes little Wisconsin off the front pages.

  53. SR, its not Walker that has the hold on them its the entire Republican machine that Walker has backing him that has put pressure on them. I have been keeping up with this whole scenario via Facebook and a lot of pressure is being put on some of the moderate Republicans who want to vote no on this bill from the Right.

    The local and National Republican party is pressuring them to vote with the Governor. They know that if they turn their vote against him that this will reverberate around the country in a negative way for the Repubs.

  54. A happy Tuesday to everyone tuning in today, and special greetings to BWD! May today be filled with calm, thoughtfulness, and wisdom, and may the President and his staff see visible progress in their dealing with ‘the other side’!

  55. I must agree about Keith. I believe his intentions were always good, but he led the PL in their righteous indignation of the imperfectness of PBO. When he could have driven an important narrative (like the oil spill speech) he turned it into his own soapbox for his unreasonable expectations. He (and Rachel was bad that day too, as I recall) wanted Obama to come out with fire and brimstone, threatening to throw all of BP in jail. This feel-good vengeance has done an insidious kind of damage to this presidency, giving cover to our real enemies and weakening our ability to fight them. I was deeply disappointed in Keith.

    That being said, Lawrence has become unwatchable and Ed Schultz always was virtually unwatchable for me. I fervently wish for a liberal alternative to Fox News, but if it’s claim to fame is doing damage to Democrats fighting the good fight, then I can’t support it.

  56. God, I know better: it is “its” not “it’s”. The English major in me.

  57. Two Obama appointee Judges were confirmed yesterday:

    In other actions on Monday, the Senate unanimously confirmed two judicial nominees, Amy Totenberg and Steve Jones, and heard the introduction of several amendments to the Patent Reform Act.

  58. I so agree about Ed and Lawrence. I was an avid listener and watcher of Ed’s until he told the 99er’s not to vote. At times I liked Lawrence, especially getting the desks for the kids in Africa. I was DVRing all the shows now I only DVR Rachel. I am so disappointed in all of them. Thank goodness for BWD and this place!

  59. I must say, whenever I see a picture of President Obama, it is a very comforting and soothing feeling. He is very smart and I always admire smart men no matter what they look like. His good looks is just icing on the cake-of-smart-confident man.

  60. Elly in Md – If you want to read it — wait until it comes out in paperback. I thought the book was boring and Woodward is not a very good writer IMO. Actually there was very little news in this book because we who follow our President already knew the issues in the book!

  61. I totally agree. This is a nationalized effort, with the national GOP leadership placing a great deal of pressure upon these individuals to serve as the opening salvo to a unionbusting attempt which was to spread to numerous swing states. It’s a very big deal that Dems and protesters have done so much to turn public opinion against the GOP both within Wisconsin and nationwide insofar as unionbusting goes, and have done so much to shed such a spotlight on the overreaches which the GOP is guaranteed to deliver once they get a taste of power as well as their ties with ultra-wealthy ideologues. This is quite an achievement already; one which isn’t credited enough.

  62. Who says? It’s quite significant that the GOP wasn’t able to successfully depict the WI events as “taxpayers versus pampered public employees.” This is huge. For everyone who says that Dems don’t message, we’re lost, we’ll never improve, etc., seems to me that Dems caught the GOP waaaaaay off guard with the coordinated “fleeing Dem state senators” media attraction coupled with massive protests, organized beautifully and which won the hearts of Wisconsinites. We need to build on these achievements; the GOP is not unstoppable.

  63. What is going on with the Left radio hosts? I listen to Stephanie Miller, Thom Hartmann, Randi Rhoads and Bill Press. The only ones supporting President Obama and bash the GOP constantly are Stephanie Miller and Randi Rhoads. Thom Hartman, Bill Press and his subsitutes bash the POTUS nonstop that I stopped listening to Thom Hartmann. He’s smart but is one of the PL. Bill Press has had substitutes for the past week but the guy this morning was such a butthole I turned it off. Stephanie Miller talked about improving the left radio infrastructure for 2012 but who needs these nut cases who never were supporters of the president in the first place. 2012 will be a grassroots campaign where we will be going door-to-door letting the people know what the president has done for four years because the RW Media will not cover it.

  64. Don’t let it get you down, eclectablog! Fools will be fools. We’re in a time of massive change and conservative regressives who fear progress because they’d like to move into an idealized version of the 50s, and liberal regressives who fear progress because they think that every improvment made means that no more will come—these folks are just being who they are and are entitled to their opinions. And don’t get me started on the megasites in the new media which uplift trolls while disdaining reasoned supporters of President Obama—all for profit.

    Just keep doing what you’re doing, know that you’re on the right side of history, and know that it does make a difference, and is appreciated regardless of the stats on a sitemeter.

    Keep on keeping on. 🙂

  65. I would like to think that this February growth links (directly?)to all that running around and conferencing the President and his staff have been doing with small businesses, while the GOPers sit around and wait for deadlines (to shut down the country). This administration’s boots-on- the-ground activities and determination to ‘win the future’ have to be stirring some optimism among businesses. A case of sure and steady wins the race? I hope so.

  66. Yes, yes, yes.

    This feel-good vengeance has done an insidious kind of damage to this presidency, giving cover to our real enemies and weakening our ability to fight them.

    Sensationalism is counterproductive to progress. As we’re seeing, indeed, the liberal version of Fox”News” is just as undermining of progress and regressive as the original. Same tools of fact-free narratives and selective storytelling in order to drive an opaque agenda as well. We have to continue to be our own solution and build up alternatives which are less driven by pure profits and thus less preserving of the status quo. This site got so popular so quickly because people thirst for this intelligent, mature type of analysis with less hair on fire and hyperbole. I’m going to try to link to this space every day at a new site.

  67. The Tea Party has pushed the GOP so far to the right that they sound delusional and out of touch with reality. How can you run a government when one of the parties is just plain NUTS??

  68. Really great point. We’re going to have to go door to door to correct the lies and misinformation in both the right and portions of the lefty media. Take comfort in the fact that President Obama’s approvals remain so utterly high within the Democratic party. And in incidents like the tax cut deal during which the self-important blowhards and media “personalities” promised such ugly retribution from the base—this retribution never appeared (POTUS’ polling with Dems only shifted slightly). So they definitely could be helpful to the cause of progress, but the fact that they are not does not mean that all is lost.

  69. From my twitter stream:

    @thinkprogress BREAKING: Judge issues temporary restraining order opening Wisconsin state capital

  70. This really is disgusting coming from the Speaker of the House of Representatives:

    Boehner Says Public Employee Unions Have ‘A Machine Gun’ Pointed ‘At The Heads Of The Local Officials’
    Boehner is sorely mistaken about the role of public employee unions in state budget crises. In 80 percent of the states that do not have collective bargaining rights for public employees, the budget crises are worse than in Wisconsin. Also, public employees in Wisconsin have already agreed to reduce their salaries — which, contra Boehner, are not “way out of line” with other working Americans.

    Aside from contradicting Boehner’s plea for more civility earlier this year, his characterization of machine-gun wielding public employee unions belies a popular conservative talking point that nobody is trying to defame public workers. “No one’s demonizing or vilifying public employees,” said New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) yesterday. “People are not denigrating state workers,” said Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback (R).


  71. Good mishmash! I had to laugh at this one.


    “Perry though made clear that he thinks the Obama may like to hear himself talk, frequently mentioned how “long” the president took to answer some of the governor’s questions.”

    Instead of just throwing out catch phrases, President Obama actually answered them thoughtfully. I’ll bet the president used big words with syllables, too!!! LOL!!!!

    It sounds like a lot of these Republicans have been watching Fox News or hearing their own bs and now they are finding out that he’s not only a good man, he can help them do their jobs. What the president of this country wants for the governors will actually help them provide for the citizens of their states and help the people of this country.

    I think he’s a truly great president.

    March 1, 2011 at 10:01 am

  72. Open the peoples house!!! Goodness gracious it shouldn’t even have to come to this.

    Walker’s uch an idiot he probably thinks he can fire the judge, thankfully he can’t.

    I appreciate the continued updates symmetry!

  73. I think you’re right on the money. Are you hearing something about J. Huntsman ?

  74. THE END OF THE NEW DEAL? (By Robert Shrum)

    The GOP’s economic program is an effort to destroy the architecture of social justice and corporate responsibility in America

    Barack Obama entered his presidency only months into the financial crisis. Compounded by the pressures of a hyper-media age, the public mood didn’t accord him many months before punishing him and his party in the midterm elections for a recovery that was taking hold but not fast enough, a recovery still more a statistical artifact than a fact of people’s lives. There are now more convincing signs of economic revival, which could yield decisive and Democratic dividends in 2012 — if the results of the 2010 elections don’t stall a reverse in growth and job creation.

    That’s one of the two great dangers now — for the nation and the president. The other danger, moving like an ideological freight train through the House of Representatives and across state governments and the judiciary, is the erosion or repeal of the New Deal itself. This is the aim of a Republican party now far to the right of Dwight Eisenhower and Richard Nixon — and even the surprisingly pragmatic Ronald Reagan.


  75. Way to stay classy and civil, Speaker Boehner. Can we please get the gavel away from this guy and back to Speaker Pelosi?

  76. Just like Palin and “refudiate.” It’s an anxiety and defensive disdain of what is considered an intellectualism which goes over the heads of others. However, President Obama never shows off or acts better than other people; it’s the Republican leadership who are in bed with the true elitists.

  77. Great article. Nice to see the media discuss the GOP’s plans in such detail.

    This is a really great description of what took place:

    “The GOP offered Americans a scapegoat in the recent campaign: A government doing big things in the face of a grave challenge was turned into the Big Bad Government. The very government that was preventing catastrophe was portrayed as causing it.”



  78. It really is astonishing. How did this man become speaker of the house? There should be some minimum requirement for getting into public office. You know, like understanding your oath of office, government 101, basic economics, etc. Watching the 112th (do nothing) congress, it is clear we are being governed by idiots.

  79. Nothing new about those left radio shows. Hartmann and Bill Press lost me even during the campaign. The only true voice in my opinion is Randi Rhodes. Even Stephanie Miller goes overboard in her criticism at times. Very sad.

  80. Keep in mind, this guy is second in line, just after Biden to be President. That is one very scarey thought.

  81. Great “where do we go from here” piece by Bob Herbert in the NYT (h/t miranda@weeseeyou), citing a 1971 memo that a wsy commenter discussed just last week:

    Unintended, but Sound Advice

    In Lewis Powell’s now-famous memo to America’s business community, which felt beleaguered in the political environment of 1971, the future Supreme Court justice stressed the importance of organizing.

    “Strength lies in organization,” he wrote, “in careful long-range planning and implementation, in consistency of action over an indefinite period of years, in the scale of financing available only through joint effort, and in the political power available only through united action and national organizations.”


    Working America is a pro-worker advocacy organization affiliated with the A.F.L.-C.I.O. that has signed up millions of nonunion members in an effort to increase the organized reach of workers. Much more organizing, on myriad fronts, is desperately needed.



    It’s a really good piece, worth reading in its entirety (and leaving a comment!).

  82. That would certainly be fantastic. I read a story about South Carolina GOP activists who did not favor a potential Palin candidacy, citing Bachmann (!) as a more intelligent alternative. She may very well be done.

  83. ^MTmarilyn, you can go here: (We Are Wisconsin!)


    And, here:


    Of course, other states’ unions are bein’ attacked, too…MI, OH, PA, IN, TN, et al!

    More Background Info:

    Workers’ Uprising: Two Dozen Protests Launched Across Wisconsin, TV Talk Show Blackout of Union Reps: Here’s a run-down on events and key analysis on the fast-moving events in Wisconsin’s state capitol — and nationwide… http://tinyurl.com/5wvwjxt

    Workers’ Uprising: Americans Overwhelmingly on Public Workers’ Side, Republicans Defect from Walker’s Scorched-Earth Tactics… http://tinyurl.com/4fsktg4

    Vision: 5 Reasons the Wisconsin Uprising Affects You — And How You Can Help: This is a critical moment in our nation’s history. Now’s the time to stand up… http://tinyurl.com/4t8q5yb

    GO Wisconsin GO!!! 🙂

  84. Huntsman will run as the lovable moderate nerd and hope with all the rest trying to teabag each other that they’ll split that vote 4-5 ways and leave him the moderate primary vote – even if it is only 25-30%.

    Basically he’s going to run the Rick Snyder campaign on a national level. Hoekstra, Bouchard, Cox split the wingnut vote three ways, Snyder played “one tough nerd” to pick up the moderate 35%. Also he’s banking on the fact that since there won’t be a Dem primary, that many will vote in the GOP primary and those voters will back him. That also happened in Michigan, even when there was a pitched primary battle for the Dem Gov spot.

  85. Happy Tuesday… and a happy hopeful March to all.. thanks for the mish-mash BWD. Facebooked.

  86. I am not condemning Ed or Lawrence and you aren’t either. Lawrence on gun control is probably the best liberal advocate out there. But he’s too smart to not know that Jane Hamsher and others send a particular message to all of us on the Left, and I’m sure I speak for many here that she is not a spokesperson for my beliefs. I think he’s doing some subtle corporate bidding under the guise of ‘fairness’. He’s not helping.

    I will always state that Ed Schultz’ voice is needed — we need a blue collar spokesperson from the Left. It can’t always be Profs. Maddow and Hartman. However, Ed is woefully factually challenged (something I’d hoped would get better with a staff at MSNBC but that has not been the case). He blurts with great authority, his ideas that betray his ignorance. Telling the 99’ers not to vote. And my personal favorite: his weeks-long rant that Dem’s should kill HCR, which would send lefties running to the polls in 2010, and reintroduce his ‘perfect’ bill. What. An. Idiot.

    If you call in and call him on it, you’d better have an exact date that he said what you’re criticizing him for, because he denies it.

    He’s one of those PL’ers who can start a sentence by insulting Obama and ending it by telling people to vote for him. It’s a mixed message, at best.

  87. I’m pretty sure the good people here have done a very credible job of debunking Huntsman’s chances. Nothing to see there.

  88. You’re absolutely right. Thom can be sensible sometimes but other times he’s completely insane. Even though he practically lost me on Afghanistan (“Let the place blow up! Let it all blow up at once! It will be remade into a liberal utopia!”. This, when it was pointed out to him by a guest that you have to make these moves incrementally and adjust to changing condition). Sheesh.

    Stephanie great. Always. We don’t get Randi in Chicago anymore and my creaky computer is bad at streaming (I need to replace it this year).

    The rest of our line-up in Chicago is outrageous. Norman Goldman is the liberal Rush Limbaugh and just as factually accurate. You would think Obama had set out to dupe the entire world. He’s un-listenable.

    And who is this Leslie Marshall from — wait for it — the Fox Financial Channel! The first 5 minutes was filled with plugs for the shows where she does financial news (I’m assuming. I don’t need someone plugging Bill O’Reilly on my local progressive radio). And this is the reason I turned her off: every other word was ‘you know. you know’. Drove me nuts.

    We finally have a small toehold in progressive media and I’m sick of the righteous who think they’re showing their ‘fairness’ by bashing Democrats for dealing with reality.

  89. While I miss Countdown, you are right, he could be brutal on our President, if he didn’t say or do exactly what Keith thought he should, and exactly how and when. However, there are several still on MSNBC who seem to have picked up where he left off – and then some.

    Is there any place/person/show where Republicans criticize Republican leaders to the extent supposed Democrats (hosts & guests) on MSNBC criticize our President?

  90. Now that scared me. I don’t think I’m going to sleep as well at night anymore. If he did lead, he’d screw it up, and if he didn’t, who would be the puppet master?

  91. Maybe looking at what is happening in the ME, she realized that being President is not at all like having a tea party with your dolls.

  92. If people could only see it, then they’d know that the best blue collar spokesmen are actual the President, First Lady and VP Biden. The President and his wife grew up in blue collar homes with blue collar values. They just went on to professional careers that are atypical to blue collar workers. They were probably more blue collar than VP Biden (who is also a lawyer, and he’s been in politics longer than either the POTUS or First Lady) – they just don’t use the colloquialisms like the VP does. The folks in the White House understand what it’s like to balance a checkbook, make a paycheck go far, save for kids college, manage credit card debt, work long days, maintain a home life and work life. I’m not convinced that Ed knows about any of that. If he did, he wouldn’t tell people not to vote because they didn’t get everything exactly the way they wanted it, or jeopardize the livelihood of an entire class of people so that you can get some air time. He’s not only woefully uninformed and misinformed – he’s selfish and dangerously short-sighted.

  93. Yup, the building has been shut down—with some protesters still inside.

    “On Sunday, Governor Walker ordered the Wisconsin capitol building to be cleared of protesters and locked down. As the deadline for clearing the building drew near, live-feed broadcasts from inside the building were cut off. Police poured into the building…and refused to clear the protesters in the name of union solidarity.”

    “The deadline came and went, and finally the word came down: the protesters could stay. The building erupted in thunderous cheers, and the action to stop Walker’s power play continued for another day…until Walker abruptly locked down the capitol building on Monday:

    “About 60 demonstrators who had slept in the statehouse overnight remained inside as of noon Monday, and they banged drums, sang and danced in the rotunda. They had access to restrooms and, given the dwindling size of the group, appeared to have a decent supply of food. There was no indication that the police were preparing to arrest or eject them, and several said in interviews that they had no intention of leaving.”


  94. I have a feeling though that “the Village” will push Huntsman like crazy. The “republican Obama”. He will have the financial elite behind him too. We’ll see…

  95. More good news. I hope that Wisconsin workers continue to stand firm in their resolve, and that the public continues to support their efforts.

  96. She’s still lurking on the sidelines, with her new “chief of staff,” waiting for the POTUS, or his wife, to make a statement about ANYTHING so she can pounce…and make a fool of herself, yet again!

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