Wednesday morning mishmash

Hi guys,

1. The president is out of public eye today.

2. Here’s the pool report from the fundraiser last night in Boston:

‘We’re turning the corner’

…“Not only were we able to get this economy going again, that in the last 15 months we’ve seen the economy add jobs…but under Nancy’s leadership we were able to achieve historic health care legislation that over the last 15, 20 years will end up benefiting millions of families across the country… we were able to get “don’t ask, don’t’ tell” repealed,” he continued, adding that Congress expand our investments in clean energy, made the largest investments in infrastructure and the largest investments in education in years.

“We didn’t just rescue the economy we put it on the strongest footing for the future,” Obama said.

“And along the way we saved the auto industry and a few other things,” he quipped, to some laughter from the crowd.

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3. One more professional left talking point goes straight to the toilet:

SEIU Chief: Obama ‘Has Stepped Up’ in State Labor Fights

With organized labor under attack in the states, the president of the Service Employees International Union today praised President Obama’s role in the fight, saying the administration “has stepped up” to offer the full weight of their support. 

“Our members in Wisconsin and Ohio were incredibly proud when the president spoke out about the real agenda in Wisconsin and Ohio being about eliminating workers’ voice and busting unions,” SEIU President Mary Kay Henry told us on ABC’s “Top Line” today.

“And that was a huge step forward. We then saw the Secretary of Labor issue a statement and then an op-ed and then do a speech that said union is in her family — that we have to have a way to solve problems at the collective bargaining table.”

“So we think the administration has stepped up in this moment. And that it’s up to us, the people all across this country, to hold our government accountable and get the private sector to reinvest in America.”

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4. Thanks to deaniac83, aka “The Man”! – over at the excellent The People’s View, comes this story: Tarp Is 70% repaid. Please go read “The Man”‘s terrific piece.


5. Yea, line in the sand! Bully pulpit! Not caving!! Blah, blah, blah.

White House veto threat on home refinance bill

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House on Tuesday threatened to veto a Republican bill that would abolish an Obama administration program aimed at helping people refinance homes that are worth less than they paid for them.The veto threat could be the first of several as House Republicans begin working on bills terminating four administration-backed programs aimed at preventing foreclosures.


6. Well, this is might be one bill more than what i expected PBO to sign over the next two years.  Here’s the statement by the President on Senate Passage of the America Invents Act:

“Creating new jobs and new opportunities in a fiercely competitive world demands policies that encourage and support American innovation and ingenuity.  So I’m pleased that, on a bipartisan basis, the Senate has passed the most significant patent reform in over half a century.  This long-overdue reform is vital to our ongoing efforts to modernize America’s patent laws and reduce the backlog of 700,000 patent applications – which won’t just increase transparency and certainty for inventors, entrepreneurs and businesses, but help grow our economy and create good jobs.  I want to thank Senators Leahy, Grassley and Hatch for their leadership on this issue, and I look forward to working with the House of Representatives to pass patent reform legislation I can sign into law.”


7. President Obama speech yesterday at TechBoston Academy in Massachusetts:



116 thoughts on “Wednesday morning mishmash

  1. The poutrage today at PL is exceptionally strong given what is happening in WI. And none did any introspection how things came to such a pass.

  2. As always, our President is working hard and getting things done for the country. Thank God for President Obama.

  3. The likes of former Republicans like Ed Schultz, DKOS, and Huffington have been pushing this meme. It has been shown to be false even before the SEUI issued this message.

    I hope that people are aware that the PL has a decisively Republican agenda. Even though they disguise their motives by ostensibly pushing “left-wing” issues. They are not stupid or naive – they know exactly what they are doing. They are dishonest, period.

    At least Bachman, Huckabee, Palin, etc are honest about their motives.

  4. Off topic, but I think many will be interested: There is a Facebook Message from the President and the First Lady on the subject of bullying. Apparently, there will be an event at the WH tomorrow which will be discussed live on Facebook.

  5. Good mornin’ All…

    BWD, you’ve done it, again…Great MishMash! 🙂

    PHBO, “WE’ve got your back”…FIRED UP & READY TO GO!

    A email I received from OFA:

    …Add your name today to show Republicans in Congress we stand behind the President’s call to come together:

    I stand with President Obama in support of passing a responsible budget—one that cuts spending without slowing our economic growth or costing hundreds of thousands of American jobs.”


    Of course, I added my name to stand w/PBHO! 😉

    50 Photos from the 50-State Rallies to Save the American Dream…

    WeAreWisconsin…GO Wisconsin GO…WeAreOne!!!

  6. It’s too bad the SEIU decided to get in bed with Markos and Daily Kos. No doubt Markos made false claims about his site in order to get them interested, but it’s up to the SEIU to verify any claims to find out they were lies. They were conned by a man out to enrich himself and nothing more.

  7. Nothing is off topic here is it has to do with the President. This is the place to bring information so we all know what is happening. We can’t seem to get it from the msm. Thanks for the info about Facebook. I haven’t checked it yet today.

  8. I *heart* you, bwd. Today, especially, for #3. Thank you, thank you, thank you for that link. I wish you’d put it as the top line. In 40-point font size. In bold. And in italics. 😀

    A couple weeks ago you posted a photo of PBO during and before his meeting with labor and corporate leaders, in one of the photos PBO and Trumka were hugging (one of those quick “guy hug” greetings)and PBO had a big smile on his face. Now, if the President was completely uninvolved and out of touch with what was going on in Wisconsin – would Trumka have attended the meeting? Would he have done the guy-hug thing? Ugh, people who refuse to look at all the facts drive me up the wall. But then why look at the facts when the only goal of some sites is to rail against the government no matter what – facts be damned!

    whew. rant over.

  9. And their joint first poll yesterday ?

    “Daily Kos/SEIU Weekly State of the Nation Poll: Half of Republicans want Obama impeached”

    Talk about propagating right wing talking points.

  10. Fox is now publicly beating the drum for a shutdown. I wish the Dems would point this out – Napolitano, Hannity and Fox and Friends have all pushed the idea that a shutdown is a good thing.

    Dems could really use this in their frame war if they ever decided to engage and fight it. You can bet the moment a shutdown happened Fox would blame the White House, but right now they’re calling for Boehner to cause it.

  11. I sent an email to Ed Schultz this morning with a link to this article. Here’s a copy/paste of the email:

    Ed – I know how much you delight in bashing President Obama about his imagined lack of action regarding the situation in Wisconsin but I thought you might like to know what the President of the SEIU had to say about this. [I then added the link and a few quoted lines]

    I know it’s better television to be angry and outraged, but perhaps you owe the President a sincere apology? Or not…. I honestly don’t believe your “I’m for the little guy” act any more than I believed it from John Edwards. Your whole shtick is based on your alter-ego Rush Limbaugh…you just changed parties because the other guys already had him.

    There. I just expressed my opinion about you. Of course it’s no more factual than your opinions.

    I could tune in tonight to see if you report on this…but it would be a waste of my time wouldn’t it?


  12. Wait…you mean if people hadn’t had a hissy fit and actually voted for Democrats, then the Republicans wouldn’t be in a position to break the Unions?

    You speak madness!

  13. Indeed! It was nice to see that he is out of the public eye, though I’m sure that does not mean he isn’t working for the public today. That’s why, IMO, we shouldn’t worry when he does not actively/visibly engage his opponents, because we know that he is still working for the country, only in HIS way.

    Happy Wednesday, one and all, and thank you BWD for this morning’s postings!

  14. Good morning everyone 😀

    From my twitter timeline:

    RT @WestWingReport: President to make a personnel announcement at 10:50 in Diplomatic Reception Room. Pool coverage only

  15. But just think how much more content we would all be if we paid no attention to any of these people? Most of the public isn’t paying attention, including the most thoughtful and creative segment of the public. Let’s join our energies to theirs and do everything we can to encourage the people of this country to take their democracy seriously and learn what is in their own best interests. We have a President who is amenable to that. Let’s ignore the silly people and concentrate on widening awareness and encouraging peaceful protests all over the country.

  16. Good morning, BWD and family. Such good news from WI. That piece from SEIU, outstanding, but I wish they wouldn’t hold hands with Kosmatots on the ‘dark side.’

    Special thanks, BWD for your link to our wonderful Deaniac’s work at TPV. One of our posters has named him “Brainiac” which he well deserves.

  17. SEIU had better be using a condom if they get into bed with the ‘dark side’ or they could wake up with a disease they will regret.

  18. Except he has supported the unions — just ask the Republicans. “Obama operatives and Obama thugs” are behind the recall efforts.

    Obama can’t win, can he? The Left is pissed he isn’t walking the picket line like some made-for-TV movie with all problems solved in 1:40, with time for Viagra commercials. You know, where Republicans hang their heads in shame because Obama yelled at them, learn the error of their ways and embrace the New Deal.

    The Republicans are yelling that Obama is interfering with state politics, making Obama the story (just like we predicted right here at BWD’s site and others). “Over reach!” “Tyranny!”

    As recently as 10 years ago, these behind-the-scenes moves would have been hailed universally by all Democrats. But no. Not for Barack Obama.

    What the eff does Jane Hamsher and Paul Krugman think Hillary would have done? Seriously.

  19. Blessings on you for trying get that man to actually speak out some truth. I think you are fighting a losing battle but we all do what we can.

  20. Thank you!

    Who is to blame for the mess in WI, and OH and FL?

    The DEMOCRATS would didn’t vote. The Democrats that Ed Schultz told to stay home. The worthless sell-outs weren’t worth a vote, according to Norman Goldman or Cenk. But this is all Obama’s fault? I want to scream my bloody head off.

    Not once, for a nanosecond, does the PL take an ounce of responsibility for their indefensible, irresponsible rants that kept some Democrats home in 2010.

    That being said, each and every Democrat who didn’t vote in WI, or OH, or FL or here in IL where we’re left with a Republican Senator, should own up to their responsibility for Scott Walker, et al.

  21. I went batshit crazy — by all means, kos, give impeachment a place in American consciousness, validate it by running a poll.

    I’ve had it with kos. I’m not seeing the advantage for SEIU, who needs a Democrat in the White House, not attach itself to the King of Whiners.

  22. “Left wing” issues trashed with thinly disguised “Right wing” rhetoric

  23. I believe that the left is trying to cause or hype up tensions between Obama and unions. I’ve noticed it for more than a year now.

    I don’t remember what the issue was but there was some disagreement between one union and the WH some time ago and it caused a lot of fury amongst the left. Jane Hamsher declared that unions were not an arm of the Democratic party or some such. Dkos and other lib sites were filled with anti-Obama pro-union blogs/diaries.

    What the left doesn’t seem to understand is that unions need the Dem party just as much as the Dems needs unions. They may have problems from time to time, but the reality is that the GOP is trying to destroy both of them and so they need each other to survive.

  24. Thanks! For a moment I thought that might be our Ex governor, Janet Napolitano. I never watch Fox because I have a strong gag reflex so I’m not up on their can of mixed nuts.

  25. Judge Napolitano, he’s filling in for Beck this week I believe, but is a regular contributor these days. He’s a libertarian, so he’s got cred with the Paulites.

  26. Didn’t you hear? inviting Trumka was just a bone thrown to unions. It was all for show and Trumka was being played – secretly. Yep.

  27. Good morning everyone!

    h/t sepia@weeseeyou:

    The Congressional Black Caucus, from time to time, will trot in front of the cameras with statements about what POTUS is or supposedly isn’t doing for black people. They’re not nearly as bad as Tavis or Cornel West, but they do have moments in which they totally fail to credit the WH. Now with that context, the CBC was quoted positively within the following article, which the CBC retweeted:

    The Root: Looking At The Bright Side Of The Budget

    by Cynthia Gordy

    On Monday, as a nod to both the last day of Black History Month and impending federal budget cuts (two areas with more in common, apparently, than one might think), the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and Rep. Danny K. Davis (D-IL) hosted a forum dedicated to investing in communities of color.

    Dr. Elsie Scott, president of the CBCF, a nonprofit policy institute, explained the connection.

    “We’ve spent much of the month of February looking back on our past and how far we’ve come. Now we’re talking about where we’re going in the future,” she said at the top of the meeting, which mostly explored possible solutions to combat unemployment.

    “Communities of color are faced with a lot of hardships. We’ve got a budget crisis, and we’re being cut out. But we can’t sit back and say, ‘Woe is us.’ Let’s talk about how we can invest the resources that we have — which are so much greater than our ancestors had — and how we are going to move forward.”

    When the premise is, “At least it’s not as bad as slavery and Reconstruction,” you know it’s going to be a questionable sell. But under that principle, a roster of Obama-administration officials and other policy experts took an optimistic stance, presenting some of their plans for making the best use of what they’ve got.

    On the employment front, Gerri Fiala, the Department of Labor’s deputy assistant secretary for employment and training, acknowledged the difficulty ahead.

    “When you’re talking about big budget cuts, increased demand for training, and high numbers of unemployed and underemployed people who want the skills they need to advance, it’s a tremendous challenge,” she said, adding that she is hopeful about what’s possible.

    Fiala touted several existing Labor Department programs connecting African-American adults to employment opportunities, such as the Wagner-Peyser program, which offers job-placement services. Between October 2009 and September 2010, more than 4.3 million people went through the program, and 19 percent were black.

    As of September 2010, nearly 28,000 African Americans have received training through the department’s community-based job-training grants, and under the Workforce Investment Act, about 140,000 African Americans found jobs between October 2008 and September 2009.

    Furthermore, on Monday Labor Secretary Hilda Solis announced $17 million in new grant money under the Reintegration of Ex-Offender Operation Plan for young ex-offenders, ages 16 through 24. This program awards grants to intermediary organizations and community-based partners to launch academic and career training at juvenile-justice agencies.

    Piggybacking on the subject of re-entry from the criminal justice system, Amy Solomon, senior adviser for the Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs, detailed the agency’s current initiatives. The Second Chance program, for example, started under President Bush in 2008, provides grants to government and nonprofit agencies to support adults leaving prison.

    “Over the past two years, we’ve put out $125 million in grants that are supporting more than 250 active grantees in the field,” said Solomon. “We want more money and want to be doing more. But the good news is that a few years ago, there were just programs here and there, and now we have them sprouting up all over every corner of the country.”

    Solomon also plugged the department’s new interagency Reentry Council, which held its inaugural meeting in January, headed by Attorney General Eric Holder. The council is working across agencies to find new ways to garner attention and make progress on the issue.

    “We’re putting as much emphasis as we can on what we can do now, without new money or new laws, to make a difference,” said Solomon, citing local solutions such as the “ban the box” movement to eliminate questions about past convictions on initial public-employment applications.

    Education Secretary Arne Duncan explored the education landscape by playing up the administration’s reform agenda, starting with requests put forth in Obama’s 2012 budget.

    He opened with the importance of early-childhood education, arguing that in order to close the achievement gap, we have to make sure our 3- and 4-year-olds enter kindergarten ready to learn. “In the budget, we’re asking for the chance to invest $350 million into disadvantaged communities to increase access to early-childhood programs and to make sure they’re high quality,” Duncan said.

    Lauding the success of the Harlem Children’s Zone program — which involves the entire community in the education of its children, through parenting workshops, GED classes and community centers — Duncan said that the administration wants to invest $150 million toward replicating the program nationwide in the country’s poorest neighborhoods.

    As for investments that are already in place, Duncan highlighted the Education Department’s $4 billion in “school turnaround” grants for states and districts with the lowest-performing schools. Different turnaround models include longer school days and years, removing ineffective teachers and implementing stronger professional development for staff.

    “We have one goal in mind for all of this, and that is to dramatically increase the percentage of college graduates,” Duncan said. “There are no good jobs for a high school dropout in the legal economy, and basically no good jobs if you just have a high school diploma. Some form of higher education has to be the goal for every single student.”

    That said, Duncan emphasized the $2 billion that the administration put toward community colleges for increasing capacity and access, and its boosting of Pell Grants for low-income college students by $40 billion over the next decade.

    With its focus on making the most of an about-to-be-even-worse situation, the forum was a refreshing break from lingering on the negative. Unfortunately, the administration will require cooperation from Congress in order for many of these programs to continue.



    Sepia asked: “So, my question is why hasn’t the CBC talked about these achievements and goals? The only reason why the CBC tweeted this article is because one of their members was mentioned in it!”


  28. It’s so clear now, why didn’t I see it before? Trumka was so overwhelmed with being invited to the White House (once again) that he didn’t realize his was being played! Silly, silly man.

    with a knick knack paddy whack…

  29. Thanks and blessings on you for a strong stomach and monitoring that noxious place. Anyone having street cred with Paulites is not someone I would care to know.

  30. npr ceo resigns. Good or bad?

    I vote neutral. On the one hand, movement conservatives can claim another scalp but on the other hand, NPR is no longer the NPR it used to be. They often approach stories using right wing frames and engage in false equivalencies, just like their MSM counterparts. Their on-air personalities speak in dulcet tones, but their underlying message often mirrors the mainstream media.


    When progressive historian Howard Zinn died on January 27, NPR’s All Things Considered (1/28/10) marked his passing with something you don’t often see in an obituary: a rebuttal.

    After quoting Noam Chomsky and Julian Bond, NPR’s Allison Keyes turned to far-right activist David Horowitz to symbolically spit on Zinn’s grave. “There is absolutely nothing in Howard Zinn’s intellectual output that is worthy of any kind of respect,” Horowitz declared. “Zinn represents a fringe mentality which has unfortunately seduced millions of people at this point in time. So he did certainly alter the consciousness of millions of younger people for the worse.”

    Horowitz’s substance-free attack contributed nothing to an understanding of Zinn’s life or work, other than conveying that he’s disliked by cranky right-wingers. (Horowitz has been best known in recent years for his race-baiting and Muslim-bashing–Extra!, 5-6/02; FAIR report, 10/1/08.) He seems to have been included merely to demonstrate that NPR will not allow praise for a leftist to go unaccompanied by conservative contempt.

    Needless to say, it is not the case that NPR has a consistent principle that all its obituaries be thus “balanced.” Take its coverage of the death of William F. Buckley, a figure as admired by the right as much as Zinn was on the left. Upon his death in February 2008, NPR aired six segments commemorating him, none of which included a non-admiring guest. In two segments, All Things Considered (2/27/08) presented the remembrances of Rich Lowry (Buckley’s successor at National Review), his son Christopher and his biographer Sam Tanenhaus.

  31. That piece from SEIU, outstanding, but I wish they wouldn’t hold hands with Kosmatots on the ‘dark side.’

    The SEIU has made things difficult for that deranged site. They can’t throw them under the bus because they’re in partnership with them but they can’t praise SEIU for their support of Obama, because that’s an illegality among the professionally outraged.

  32. Arizona Grandma – Wonderful! Here’s what I think your “best line” is:

    “There. I just expressed my opinion about you. Of course it’s no more factual than your opinions.”

    Love it!

    BWD – Excellent, excellent mishmash!

  33. Gary Locke new US ambassador to China.

    Mr Locke, whose father was born in China, was the first Chinese-American to serve as US commerce secretary.

    “Our relationship with China is one of the most critical of the 21st century,” Mr Obama said at the White House on Wednesday, flanked by Mr Locke and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

    “As the grandson of a Chinese immigrant who went on to live the American dream, Gary is the right person to continue this cooperation.”

    Mr Locke’s grandfather emigrated from China to Washington state in the north-western US, taking a job as a household servant in exchange for English lessons, according to his official biography.

    His father, also born in China, ran a grocery store and served in the US Army during World War II.

    “I’m going back to the birthplace of my grandfather, my father, my mom and her side of the family,” Mr Locke said at the White House. “And I’ll be doing so as a devoted and passionate advocate for America, the country where I was born and raised.”

    Mr Locke, who joined the Obama administration in March 2009, is a former two-term Democratic governor of Washington state.

  34. Very welcome, Aquagranny! It’s just not the case that POTUS has done little or nothing for black people as Tavis Smiley (who recently said that he thinks he’s “doing the Lord’s work” with his pbs show) and other members of the Soul Patrol are fond of alleging.

  35. Wait…you mean if people hadn’t had a hissy fit and actually voted for Democrats, then the Republicans wouldn’t be in a position to break the Unions?

    So back in November, when the voters had the most leverage, the President said, “don’t give them the keys.”

    Some Democrats did and many didn’t.

    Now tea party-flavored Republicans are making unprecedented power grabs and demoralizing the middle class. (And as far as I know, the “public option” is not on the table with any of these guys.)

    So what’s the new strategy from the same professionally left braintrust that gave us 53% of the state legislatures going to the GOP?

    Blame Obama and the Democrats for not doing enough prior to the midterms.

    If Obama doesn’t come out and support unions–some of whom supported the GOP in Wisconsin and Michigan–then he doesn’t deserve any support in 2012.

    When you lay out this “logic” in writing, you just have to wonder if there some people who are gaming certain left wing websites in order to sow discord and suppress Democratic voter turnout.

  36. Republican Wolf in Democratic Sheep’s Clothing aka DINO aka Senator Joe Manchin of WV (can you tell that guy frosts me?) said in a Senate floor speech yesterday that President Obama is failing to lead the way in reducing spending in his budget. Haven’t looked for a link yet; saw it mentioned on the teevee.

    Apparently Joe the Senator is worried about getting re-elected in WV in 2012.

    Please, Majority Leader Harry Reid, a little trip to the woodshed for your freshman Senator.

  37. I completely agree with this, Marilyn. I appreciate all of the information and opinions exchanged here.

  38. USA Today and others had no trouble rushing the Manchin anti-PBO headline out:

    Note the photo @ the link, with McCain in the background (the caption implies it’s recent).

  39. Americans reject Republican efforts to curb bargaining rights of unions whose power they say is dwarfed by corporations, a Bloomberg National Poll finds.

    As battles rage between state workers and Republican governors in Wisconsin and Ohio, 63 percent don’t think states should be able to break their promises to retirees, and respondents split over whether governors aim to balance their budgets or weaken unions that back Democratic foes, according to the poll conducted March 4-7.

    The poll shows that political challenges to government workers are failing to draw broad support from a public more concerned about unemployment than government deficits. Respondents are divided over whether public employees should sacrifice to help states ease their fiscal crises: About half say governors are unfairly targeting unions and 46 percent say public employees should be willing to accept benefit cuts. The fracture largely reflects party lines.

  40. I love this quote from the fundraiser in Boston:

    Obama was introduced by Rep. Ed Markey, who called Obama the “true fulfillment” of JFK and Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream for America.

  41. Aeroflot on Wednesday agreed to buy eight Boeing 777 jets, with an option to purchase eight more Aircraft, during a visit to Moscow by US Vice President Joe Biden.

    PHOTOS: Joe Biden in pictures

    The catalogue price of each plane is $250 million but Aeroflot received a 20 percent discount for the deal, a source close to the negotiations told AFP on condition of anonymity.

  42. Unfortuantely, the headlines is exactly why manchin did it!
    West virginia does not poll well for POTUS, I wondwer why? HMMMMMM!

  43. “The Lord’s work”? Really, the Lord’s work? By… having a chat show on PBS? I guess MLK had it all wrong: he didn’t need to be out marching in the streets; he just needed to have a half-hour show late nights to advance and win his ideals for social justice. I’m so glad Mr. Smiley has found a way to do “the Lord’s work” without doing any actual, you know, work.

  44. You give me too much credit – I keep up on Fox News spewings at Media Matters for America.

  45. He is never going to be a winner with either of those groups. The firebaggers just want to rail on him to “Push him to do better”. BS in my book.

    When I get really upset with these whiners, I try to remind myself that in reality they make up a small portion of the electorate.

    One thing I really would like is the demise of big headed red.

  46. Meanwhile, the pubs want to cut public broadcasting, and he will be history, never to be heard from again, then again, so will charlie rose!

  47. Faith I think you make a good point. I will add that we must not forget that a load of people do not vote in off year elections.

    I talked to a bunch of college students who said they will vote for Obama, but they did not seem to understand that it was important to keep Obama’s support in the house and senate in place.
    Patty Murray barely eked out a win. thank heavens.

  48. So, let me get this straight, reuters/ipsos poll is trying to make hay out of POTUS approval rating dropping two points to 49%, it was 51% last month!
    These guys love to pile on and make shit up!

  49. Temp, That during the season leading up to the Nov. elections when Rahm made a comment about the unions wasting their money to fight the reelection of Blanche Lincoln? The unions were backing Holder.

    There was also some disagreement about Obamacare in terms of what the unions wanted. They did get that worked out.

  50. Conservatives such as Uncle Pat like to harp against public unions as a classic conflict of interest because if you don’t give unions what they want they’ll work to see you’re not re-elected but seemingly don’t bat an eye with the secret lobbyist money flooding into elected officials pockets that essentially say the same thing. At least union contracts are all made public – lobbyist and now Citizens United money is all secret. That money isn’t free, lobbyists expect something in return and it’s always exponentially bigger than the donation they make.

    But not a peep from the Conservatives on this issue.

  51. Half California’s children are Latinos.

    More than half of California’s children are now of Hispanic origin, according to the US Census Bureau.

    The latest data from the 2010 census shows that Latinos and Asians accounted for most of the population growth in California over the past decade.

    The number of Hispanics rose 28% to 14 million, reaching near parity with non-Hispanic whites, while Asians grew 31%.

    California remains the biggest state, growing to 37.3 million, but not enough for additional seats in Congress.

    The detailed figures from the 2010 US Census shows that Hispanics now account for 38% of California’s population, almost equal with the 40% of non-Hispanic whites.

    These number 15 million, a drop of 5% on the previous census.

    The Asian population now stands at 4.8 million, while the non-Hispanic black population is down 1% at 2.2 million.

  52. Well, like everyone else, the unions will betch and moan, but they know they are dead meat if the repugs get back into power.

  53. I haven’t seen an account of union members moaning. But the professional left – oh my!

  54. thank you gn. I wish the black caucus would not get involved in the what has Obama done game, but at the same time, they are looking out for themselves and their own reelections. It is tragic that they rarely praise the president.

    This attitude by house and senate members is something I not aware of before PBO. All they care about is being reelected. Even the ones that I like.

    Party Unity My Behind. gosh, I think I have heard something like that said before.

  55. Stellar!

    …tea party movement…”racist and xenophobic”

    “Shazaam, Batman!”

    “The tea party is fanatically involved in peoples’ personal lives and very fundamentally Christian-I wouldn’t even call it Christian. It’s this weird evangelical cult kind of movement”

    Double “Shazaam, Batman!” squared and cubed!

    Good catch, amk for Obama. Thanks for sharing that link.

    NPR has mostly lost me. I don’t know what’s really going on with them. Maybe they have been infiltrated by the Sith or maybe they think the teapotty people will send them some money if they pretend to be “fair and balanced.”

    Whenever I’m in doubt I always ask: “Cui bono?’

  56. “Soul Patrol” I do love that and just how many ‘souls’ is this doer “of the Lord’s work” actually gathering. I use to watch Tavis Smiley but my weak stomach won’t allow that any more so I missed his special ‘anointing.’

    Maybe he should move his show to TBN. They are doing a huge fund raiser right now so that they can have a “Christian presence and dominance” of the “godless” internet. And beware if you don’t contribute big $$$ to this cause, you are in danger of eternal damnation. Apparently, they are having a bit of trouble reaching their fund raising goals.

  57. I love Charlie Rose. He has the most beautiful hands. If I was ever in my life unfaithful to my husband it might be with Charlie Rose but only if Morgan Freeman wasn’t available.

    Sorry, deep confessions of the too personal kind, lol.

  58. This was a great choice. President Obama makes such good decisions in those he appoints.

  59. So how’s all that bullying working out for you Chris Christie? Not so good according to a new poll on the “super-sized” loudmouth. From TPM:

    “According to a recent Rutgers-Eagleton poll, registered voters in New Jersey now have a much less favorable view of Christie than they did just a few months ago, with the poll coming shortly after the governor delivered his budget address two weeks ago. In that address, Christie, like other Republican governors nationwide, criticized public employee unions for having “rich benefits,” and said he would go after those benefits as a way to balance the budget.

    In the poll, 46% of voters viewed Christie favorably, compared to 44% who viewed him unfavorably. That’s a swing from his strong showing in December, when 49% of voters had a favorable impression of Christie compared to 39% who had an unfavorable impression of him.

    Further, a plurality of voters, 48%, said they didn’t like Christie’s budget proposal, while 45% said they were pleased with the proposal.”

  60. Lots of public employees all across the US have already bitten the bullet and taken pay freezes, furloughs, cuts to health benefits and retirement.

    I’m getting really tired of the scapegoating of rank and file government, state and municipal employees.

  61. Terror attack!

    “All those little brown “anchor babies” will soon be sawing off the heads of decent white folks and leaving them scattered around the desert.”

    Sorry, but that’s how that statistic might be spun here in AZ. Sometimes, I do get too cynical.

  62. There are huge changes coming with this growth and not just in CA. We are in a small county in SE PA (part of the T)and 44 percent of the school population in our major city is Hispanic. This is also true in at least four other counties in this part of PA. It won’t be long before Latinos become a dominant force in this area, changing both the culture and political leaning of the currently dominantly Republican T. People are only vaguely aware of the change that’s coming and, rather than prepare for it and embrace it, they express fear. Democrats need to welcome these growing groups with open arms because that’s the future of the party and the U.S.

  63. At that point I would have had to resist the temptation to stand up and shout, “Amen!”

  64. This is OT but I found this interesting as it relates to our President. A recent survey shows Hawaii to be the happiest state in America. I remember FLOTUS commenting on PBO’s calmness saying that in order to understand PBO, you had to understand Hawaii. I’d say growing up in that serene state truly prepared him for the job he has and to be able to deal with all the crap thrown his way.

    Meanwhile, West Virginia comes in dead last. No surprise there if we remember the primaries and all the hate that was thrown at PBO from the folks who live there. Interesting, this is the state represented by Sen. Joe Manchin who is attacking PBO’s leadership and budget today in order to earn brownie points from the haters in his state.

    Also note how poorly southern states rate, including Mississippi, which of course is run by a certain governor who thinks he can run this country. I’d love to see a debate moderator ask a question regarding this although I know it will never happen.

    Anyway, a bit from the story on the survey:

    “The telephone survey, conducted throughout 2010, examined six categories of well-being.

    They included life evaluation (how respondents felt about their current situation and where they may be in five years); emotional health; work environment; physical health; healthy behaviour; and basic access to things such as healthcare and places to exercise.

    Hawaii did especially well in three categories: life evaluation, emotional health and physical health.

    West Virginia performed the worst in those same three categories.

    Five of the top ten happiest states were in the West, while the South clearly needs a pick-me-up, with ten southern states falling to the lower end of the list.

    Meanwhile Vermont remained the state with the best health habits, while Kentucky had the worst. Massachusetts had the best access to necessities and Mississippi the worst.

    Read more:

  65. ^Jacqueline and Aquagranny, Yes it was…

    Next Secretary of Commerce…Besides PBHO’s, former Secretary Locke’s choice…hmmm?

  66. Senate Dems’ “Counterattack”… 😉


    Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) called the Republican Party’s bluff on the need for deficit reduction Wednesday, outlining a fiscal framework that involves broader cuts and revenue raisers than the GOP has proposed — and warning that there will be no agreement on funding the government unless the GOP broadens its approach.

    “A bipartisan compromise simply will not be found in the domestic discretionary spending cuts alone,” Schumer said in a half-hour presentation at the Center for American Progress. Without a broader scope, Schumer said, “we won’t be able to come to a compromise on a seven month budget.”

    Schumer’s entreaty changes the frame of the debate on Capitol Hill, which for weeks has been driven by Republican leaders, who have isolated their focus to domestic discretionary spending. Democratic leaders, who are unwilling to countenance major cuts to government services, had little luck playing on GOP turf, but will now have a coherent alternative to point to when negotiations over how to fund the government continue in coming days.

    Schumer noted that the GOP’s plan for spending cuts does almost nothing to reduce the deficit — a fact that runs at cross-purposes to their insistence that the deficit must be reduced.

    “Right now a very small, very intense ideological tail is wagging the dog over in the House of Representatives,” Schumer said. “Their fervor for spending cuts is not grounded in deficit reduction at all. Instead the far right wing has deliberately confused two separate issues. They’ve conflated reducing the deficit — which is not their true priority — with cutting government — which is.”

    Schumer endorsed the approaches taken by Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, both of whom reduced or eliminated deficits by cutting discretionary spending and addressing entitlements and tax revenues. He identified achievable savings on all three flanks, including cuts to defense spending, agriculture subsidies, and a surtax on millionaires and billionaires.

    “I noted with interest last week’s Wall Street Journal/NBC poll, the most popular proposal to reduce the deficit out of 23 options surveyed was a tax — a surtax — on millionaires and billionaires,” Schumer said. “It’s not only a popular thing to do, it’s the right thing to do.”

    Schumer left Social Security off the table, noting that it doesn’t run into real actuarial problems for decades, and isn’t a contributor to the deficit.


    “Right now we need to crawl before we can walk, and that means finishing last year’s business and complete a spending bill,” said Michael Steel, spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner.

    Don Stewart, spokesman for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, also tried to retrain the focus on the narrow sliver of the budget where Republicans feel most comfortable. “Their answer is to raise taxes, not to cut spending, and that’s not something anyone else is talking about,” he said.

    SCHUMER’S PRESENTATION SHIFTS THE ONUS IN BUDGET NEGOTIATIONS ON TO REPUBLICANS TO EXPLAIN WHY THEIR FOCUS IS SO LIMITED. But fundamentally, the dynamics of that debate haven’t changed. One side will have to blink, or something will give — the government will shutdown, or be hampered by a series of short-term stop-gap spending bills until the next budget cycle begins, and round and round we go.

  67. I hope not. But they will hedge their support. They always do when they are on the big ed and other such sites.

  68. “It was a show of force rarely seen in Lansing as hundreds of union supporters filled the Capitol rotunda and halls Tuesday morning, chanting so loudly that some had to be gaveled to quiet down in the Senate chamber.”

    “At issue is legislation to give state-appointed emergency financial managers more power to resolve fiscal crises, including dissolving employee contracts. Unionists call it an attack on collective bargaining.”


    “Gov. Rick Snyder and other backers of the bills say they’re needed to deal with what could be a glut of insolvent cities and school districts hard hit by falling tax revenues and even Snyder’s own plans to cut their state aid.”


    “Doug Pratt, spokesman for the Michigan Education Association, said the proposed EFM laws could take away employee unions’ ability to renegotiate contracts to help school districts avoid bankruptcy.”

    “He said Snyder’s budget plan amounts to a $470-per-pupil cut in state aid that will cause financial upheaval in some school districts. “That’s the issue: You’re about to shove all these districts off the ledge,” Pratt said.|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE

  69. This is amazing. This little period in time in terms of unions, liberals, and Dems joining together in light of the unionbusting attempts is just giving me goosebumps. Power to the people.

  70. That had to do with the “Cadillac Plans.” Union heads met directly with the WH to carveout a strategy for lessening any negative impact upon unions. That indeed was worked out.

  71. I think the GOP counted on the well-known American apathy to win out. It thought people wouldn’t notice as they took away hard-won rights. Hell, maybe they DID think that they had a mandate to shove all this down our throats; they probably took the act of not voting as a silent assent to their program. I’m glad to see that they’ve been proven terminally incorrect.

  72. When you lay out this “logic” in writing, you just have to wonder if there some people who are gaming certain left wing websites in order to sow discord and suppress Democratic voter turnout.

    cough, nailed it, cough; some spaces were simply trolled and that clever trolling spread to otherwise earnest progressives and put people way off course editorially, strategically, and tactically. God bless em, happy to part ways. Life goes on, just thrilled to have this space which is so focused and edited so incredibly well it’s astonishing (in a very good way).

  73. Me thinks that you are right! By making it appear that the POTUS is not on the side of unions they’re in a position to pull that “get mad and stay home” crap again. Meanwhile, back on the ranch this is an eye-opening statement that should be a wake-up call for anyone who doesn’t get it…

    “In an interview with Fox News’ Megyn Kelly moments ago, State Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-WI), one of Walker’s closest allies in the legislature, confirmed the true political motive of Walker’s anti-union push. Fitzgerald explained that “this battle” is about eliminating unions so that “the money is not there” for the labor movement. Specifically, he said that the destruction of unions will make it “much more difficult” for President Obama to win reelection in Wisconsin:

    FITZGERALD: Well if they flip the state senate, which is obviously their goal with eight recalls going on right now, they can take control of the labor unions. If we win this battle, and the money is not there under the auspices of the unions, certainly what you’re going to find is President Obama is going to have a much difficult, much more difficult time getting elected and winning the state of Wisconsin.”

  74. This post by Bob Schwoch appeared on the blog of Jack Craver, otherwise known as The Sconz. I am bogarting his blog, so please do Jack the favor of following him on twitter or liking his facebook page. He’s a very good writer with Isthmus.


    As a former Republican aide in the Wisconsin State Senate, part of my job was to help read the governor, and advise my senator accordingly. If I were still advising a Republican state senator, this is what I’d say right now.


    This governor is not hard to read. He’s a giant fiery ball of ambition. When he sneezes he compares it to how Reagan sneezed. His first major act, after netting a modest 52 percent in a GOP wave election, was to pick the most dangerous and inflammatory political fight he could think of. His next major act was to propose a budget that might get him re-elected in Texas, but not Wisconsin. Why?

    Clearly he doesn’t care about getting re-elected in Wisconsin. He doesn’t care about protests, or poll numbers, or recalls. He barely even cares if what he’s proposing passes. So long as he gets attention for proposing it.

    Scott Walker is driving a fast bus to Washington, estimated time of arrival 2012. Fourteen of his Senate passengers jumped off and hid the moment they knew what was happening. The other 19 might want to wake up before their own districts disappear in the rear-view.

    I’m not the only political watcher walking around Madison wondering what’s holding the GOP caucuses together on the Walker-for-Vice-President express. Saunter into a bar near the Capitol, find people in suits and eavesdrop for five minutes. It requires only a two-year sense of history to identify the last photogenic gubernatorial novice who turned into a conservative folk hero when a presidential candidate needed some far-right street cred.

    So attention Alberta Darling. Attention Dan Kapanke. Attention Dale Schultz (well, Dale, you already get it, apparently, but you need some support). Attention all you Republican senators who need a few union votes to hold your districts. I served alongside you and I respect you. So pretend I’m your staffer.

    You’re toast if you stay on this bus. Here’s your way off it.

    Get three of you together. Congratulations. You’re now the governor of Wisconsin.

    Call a press conference. Here’s your spin: The truth. It goes something like this.

    “We’re here to repair the budget. We accept the union concessions – budget repaired. Beyond that this state is not ready to allow.

    “Some of us Republican senators support an end to public bargaining. Others of us have reservations. But it does none of us, or our constituents, any good to lose our majority and see whatever is done now quickly undone.

    “We’ve heard from our constituents, and we’re here to represent their spoken wishes – by ending this destructive impasse and getting to work, together with the governor, passing a good, solvent, conservative budget.”

    Then you stand back and let all the people in the caucus who hate collective bargaining and don’t need the union votes to blast you a new one. You’ll get some nasty letters and e-mails and phone calls. But you’ll all get to keep your jobs. You’ll have a chance at holding the majority you just won in the Republican wave of a lifetime. You can let Baby Guv pilot his fast bus to Washington.

    And not be on board if it crashes.

    Bob Schwoch, is a UW professor of communications and a former chief-of-staff to Republican Sens. Carol Buettner and Peggy Rosenzweig, as well as Democratic Rep. Peggy Krusick.

  75. When one door closes, another one opens…

    “Nearly 50 national organizations for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people have signed a labor solidarity statement sponsored by the AFL-CIO constituency group Pride at Work. The statement supports the rights of public employees to bargain.”

    The statement says, in part:

    “As national, state and local organizations for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality, we stand in solidarity with teachers, firefighters, nurses and all workers across this country fighting for their basic rights—for all of our rights. We are one.”

  76. Those fools believe they can take over the democratic party, like the tea party took over the GOP.

    Like it or not, to stay in power the democrats have to maintain their coalition with moderates.

    I have to say I’m getting pretty concerned.

  77. I wouldn’t be overly concerned about the likes of Kos. The Tea Party is the gang that couldn’t shoot straight, yet got in a lucky shot. The PL is the gang that couldn’t shoot straight, and they’re pointing the gun at themselves. ALL the candidates that the PL touted in 2010 lost. ALL of them. They think that writing screaming blog posts will gain them power. They literally have no idea what they’re doing.

  78. As always thanks for all you do and for today’s excellent “mishmash” posts. I am so happy you highlighted the President of SEIU’s praise of President Obama for his support of unions. Now everyone, with any smidgen of integrity, knows that the self anointed progressives, who have been attacking the President for not supporting the unions, are nothing but liars.

  79. FiredUpinCA,

    Your statement really expressed my feelings about these so called progressives who have been attacking the President, non-stop, from the first day he took the oath of office:

    “When you lay out this “logic” in writing, you just have to wonder if there some people who are gaming certain left wing websites in order to sow discord and suppress Democratic voter turnout.”

    It really makes you wonder why some of the most vocal critics of the President happen to be Republicans who recently converted as born again progressives.

  80. LP, I don’t think there is cause for concern. DKos cannot do what the tebaggers did. First, the real base of the Democratic party will not be easily fooled. Second, I don’t think they can find a benefactor, like the Koch brothers, to finance their movement to take over the Democratic party.

  81. Unfortunately, the bill may pass but they’re going to have voters who remember what they did in the 2010 elections. At least, we can hope that they’ll remember and not vote against what’s in their interests…

  82. Speaking of Florida,

    “TALLAHASSEE – In a virtual replay of 2008, Florida is bucking national Democrats and Republicans in planning an early presidential primary, an act of defiance that creates strategic challenges for GOP candidates and could unravel the parties’ primary calendar next year.”

    “The added wrinkle this time: The 2012 Republican National Convention is in Tampa. If national Republican leaders make good on their threat to penalize states that don’t follow the rules, host delegates could be stopped at the door when the GOP gathers to pick its presidential ticket.”

    “With the Republican-controlled Florida Legislature showing no signs of giving in, other states that want to have a large say early in the nominating process — including Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina — are jockeying to stay out in front.”

  83. Well, it looks that a shutdown is becoming a real possibility, unless the budget issue is resolved.

    “WASHINGTON – The Senate on Wednesday struck down two separate budget measures for fiscal 2011, raising the stakes of an ongoing stand-off as the government’s solvency hangs in the balance.”

    “The GOP House bill H.R. 1, which cuts spending by over $60 billion, was defeated by a vote of 44-56.”

    “The other, a White House-backed measure that cuts $6.5 billion in spending, failed 42-58.”

    “Both required a 60-vote threshold for approval. Neither was expected to pass.”

    “Congress failed to pass a budget for fiscal 2011 last year and since then has approved three continuing resolutions to keep the government solvent. The latest one expires on March 18, and the signs of a deal appear increasingly grim.”

    “The failed Senate votes mean a fourth stop-gap measure is perhaps Congress’s best chance to avoid a shutdown, which leaders of both parties say they do not want.”

    “Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), a member of the Republican leadership, predicted Tuesday that another continuing resolution was the most likely course of action.”

  84. This is who Floridians voted into office, Rick Scott, fraudster extraordinaire. Not hard to understand why they have buyer’s remorse but why didn’t they research his background, thoroughly, before they voted him into office? (Video is included with the article.)

    “It wasn’t exactly a proud moment for our country when then President Bill Clinton famously quipped “It depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is,” while under sworn testimony. If you look back at that episode and cringe, you’ll probably be in horror watching video of Rick Scott under deposition in which he repeatedly says things like “I’m not sure I understand what ‘serious’ is,” “I’m not sure what a ‘market’ is,” and then struggles to identify his own signature.”

    “Alex Sink’s campaign has dug up footage of Scott’s deposition during a 1995 lawsuit against Columbia/HCA, when Scott was the company’s CEO. Remember, this is a guy who wants to lead one of the biggest and most troubled states in the nation.”

  85. Thanks GN for the information. My problem with the CBC is that they are so quick to attack President Obama but they loved President Clinton. This is also true of Tavis Smiley. What exactly did President Clinton, who did not face the same monumental problems that faced Obama from day one, specifically do for Black people to earn the love? By the way, Randall Robinson’s book, “The Reckoning….” points out many of Clinton’s policies that were detrimental to the interests of black community.

    The most rewarding thing is that the masses of Black people have the President’s back. Unlike members of the CBC, they are very much aware of the obstacles facing the President, with all the non stop attacks on everything he does coming from both the left and the right.

  86. I am with you Aquagranny! The Republican demonizing of public employees, who have made sacrifices, unlike the multi-millionaires, needs to stop.

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