Sunday, August 28, 2011

Disappointed Media


by CBSNews

That's 10 mph lower than the minimum criteria for being labeled a hurricane.

by CBSNews
downgraded to Tropical Storm as it makes landfall in NYC; 4M homes without power along East Coast

The bigger story than the 4 day hype about Irene is why four million people would lose power when a very minimal hurricane sweeps through from N Carolina to NY.

And let the sarcasm begin:

Andy Borowitz
Tomorrow will be sunny - or as the Weather Channel says, "The sun will scorch the Earth with its savage fury."

Andy Borowitz
If the Weather Channel loses any more credibility it will be Fox.

Andy Borowitz
NYC returning to normal. Just saw a woman steal a taxi from a blind guy.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Hurricane Hype All Over Again

This would be a great week for Congress to pass laws they don't want anybody to hear about; for Congressmen to get caught in scandals; for administration resignations, since nobody will hear about them.  Better than a typical Friday afternoon "news dump" when these things typically are revealed, we have this ridiculous wall to wall hurricane coverage obscuring every actual news story. CNN, msnbc, and even Fake News are all refusing to cover news on their "news networks" and instead, showing video of traffic lights blowing in the wind, and throwing it to the ubiquitous idiot reporter being blown, weatherwise, on the beach.

From someone who's lived in South Florida for 40 years, and seen overblown, over hyped storm coverage for decades, here's why there will not be the death and devastation the media is hoping for all over New York City.

First, hurricanes need a warm ocean to strengthen. Irene has been brushing land since it came ashore in North Carolina. Hurricanes always fall apart on land.

Second, the farther north it goes, the cooler the ocean is. Oh, and did I mention, most of it's over land?  Only half is on water. It probably will just be a tropical storm by the time it reaches NYC.

Sorry to burst your bubble, news media.

Thank goodness David Shuster is one of the few who understands the difference between news and hype. As he said in a couple of recent tweets:

The rain and possible tornadoes may cause some damage. But as news stories go, Hurricane Irene is a "bust." The ongoing hype is silly.

I have no issues with news orgs pointing out possible nightmare scenarios past few days. They won't be realized. Report the facts. Cat 1.

I'm not belittling half million without power. But that relates to crumbling U-S infrastructure, not mother nature "lashing" the U-S.


Friday, August 19, 2011

Pay to Yell at Your Congressman

Rightwing congressmen are not holding free town hall meetings very frequently these days.  From Think Progress:

Yesterday, seven unemployed constituents of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) staged a sit-in at his office in Kenosha, Wisconsin, to protest the congressman’s decision not to hold any free public town halls during the August recess. An additional 100 protesters picketed outside the office. Politico reported this week that Ryan, Chairman of the powerful House Budget Committee, will only speak to residents who are willing to pay $15 for access. 

It’s customary for representatives to host free town halls open to the public so constituents can ask questions and weigh in on their elected officials’ votes. But Ryan and other conservative congressman who have been facing angry crowds recently have decided to limit their availability to only those willing to open their wallets. This didn’t sit well with many of Ryan’s constituents who are struggling just to get by and don’t think they should have to pay to get an audience with their congressman.

Teabaggers' Popularity Plummets

The far rightwing fringe of the Regressive party -- the ones with teabags stapled to their hats -- are now more disliked by most Americans than some of the much maligned groups like Atheists and Muslims, according to a new poll from the NY Times.

The Teabaggers, who have taken control of the republican party and forced Orange John Boner to take the US to the brink of bankruptcy during the weeks of debt ceiling wrangling, now have an approval rating of only 20% and their disapproval rating, which was only 18% one year ago, has skyrocketed to 40%.

In addition, when asked, "Who do you think is mostly to blame for the current federal budget deficit?" those polled responded

Bush 44%
Obama 15%
Congress 15%
Someone else 10%.

Seems like they got that right, too.

Read more from the New York Times.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Which Far Right Regressive Can Turn the Clock Back Further?

A blog that perfectly sums it up by national radio talk show host Mike Malloy.

Rick Perry has declared war.  On the EPA.  So have all the other GOP candidates.

The EPA is evil because it seeks to regulate the use (abuse?) of natural resources in such a way to minimize harm and reduce risk.  So of course it must be eradicated. Newt wants to padlock the building and Bachmann wants to pray it away.  After all, how can anything natural in the world – like carbon dioxide – be possibly bad for you?  It was all created by God, Amen.

Do we really want a President who doesn’t believe in global climate change?  Or even simple pollution?  Or evolution?  What are we saying, collectively, as a nation if we honestly contemplate putting one of these medieval morons in the White House?  What, was Dubya too intellectual for the Teabaggers?  His malaprops too cerebral for these cretins?

We’re moving backwards, Truthseekers, through time and cultural evolution.  But that’s the ultimate goal of Capitalism run amok – feudalism.  A nation of 1% Lords, who own everything and 99% serfs who own nothing. We’re almost there . . .

She Really is a Witch

Remember Christine "I am not a witch" O'Donnell? Well she allegedly wrote a book and appeared on CNN's Piers Morgan Show last night. He asks her about a topic that she covers in her book -- Don't Ask Don't Tell -- and she refuses to answer, pretending it's not relevant. Keep in mind she's there hawking her book and this is one of the subjects she herself mentions in her book. 

She insists that it's the guest on a talk show who should decide what's discussed.  And then she walks off because he's not asking the questions to which she has pat answers memorized.

Update: The very next morning she hung up during a phone interview.

KXRK X96 RFH - Christine O'Donnell by Magallanes90

Quitting twice in two days... She's making Sarah Palin jealous.

8/19/11 UPDATE: Now that two days have gone by, my hunch that this was all a pre-planned publicity stunt seems to be proving itself. Think about it. Christine O'Donnell hasn't been seen in a year, since she lost the election. Now she's written a book. She wants to sell the book. Why do a run-of-the-mill interview on CNN that will be over and forgotten in one hour, when you can walk off the set, play the victim, and milk the media attention for days on end?  Just this morning she was all over the TV again, including the Today Show. Additional national media, additional attention, and most of all, additional sales are all part of the plan.  Nice work. You had us all fooled for a day.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Regressive Republican Rick Perry Enters Race for President

Just what we needed. Another arrogant, fake little cowboy from Texas, with attitude, swagger, and nothing more.

This guy loves America so much he wants to be president -- or secede from it. As's Joan Walsh wrote, "Perry's Texas leads the nation in minimum-wage jobs, uninsured children, high school dropouts and pollution. He balanced the state's budget with stimulus money he railed against. His record won't back up his bragging."

Read more here

Chart from Think Progress.

Starting to look familiar already.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Michelle Bachmann Wins Iowa Straw Poll

Here she is celebrating.  Can't seem to get enough of those corn dogs.

The actual results, as if they mean anything:

1. Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (4823, 28.55%)

2. Congressman Ron Paul (4671, 27.65%)

3. Governor Tim Pawlenty (2293, 13.57%)

4. Senator Rick Santorum (1657, 9.81%)

5. Herman Cain (1456, 8.62%)

6. Governor Rick Perry (718, 3.62%) write-in

7. Governor Mitt Romney (567, 3.36%)

8. Speaker Newt Gingrich (385, 2.28%)

9. Governor Jon Huntsman (69, 0.41%)

10. Congressman Thad McCotter (35, 0.21%) 

The Iowa Straw Poll is a strange mix between a county fair and a political convention, where people typically listen to speeches, applaud or yell at the candidates, and eat deep fried butter on a stick. (Paramedics are standing by.) It's totally meaningless.

In 2007 Willard "Mitt" Romney won the Straw Poll, but McCain was the Republican nominee and Barack Obama won the election.
In 1999 it actually worked: Dubya won the Straw Poll and was the nominee.
In 1995, Bob Dole and Phil Gramm tied to win the Straw Poll; Dole was the Republican nominee and Bill Clinton won the election.
In 1987, crazy evangelist Pat Robertson won the Straw Poll; but George H W Bush was the Republican nominee and won the election.
in 1979, George H W Bush won the Straw Poll; but Ronald Reagan was the Republican nominee and won the election.

Have another corn dog and enjoy it while you can. 

Update: I was thinking it would be great if only we could get a pic of Marcus Bachmann eating a corn dog.  One day later The Google granted my wish!

Tea Party Downgrade

The rightwing's intractability and lack of increased revenue are specifically mentioned in S&P's report on why they downgraded the US from an AAA to an AA+ nation:

"Compared with previous projections, our revised base case scenario now
assumes that the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts, due to expire by the end of 2012,
remain in place. We have changed our assumption on this because the majority
of Republicans in Congress continue to resist any measure that would raise
revenues, a position we believe Congress reinforced by passing the act.
The political brinksmanship of recent months highlights what we see as
America's governance and policymaking becoming less stable, less effective,
and less predictable than what we previously believed. The statutory debt
ceiling and the threat of default have become political bargaining chips in
the debate over fiscal policy.
It appears that for now, new revenues have dropped down on the menu of policy options."

In addition, the far rightwing Teabag Wearers who claim to be such Constitutional sticklers, blatantly rooted for default and not raising the debt ceiling. This would have specifically been unconstitutional since the Constitution says the debt of the US govt "shall not be questioned."

So the bottom line is the Regressives in Congress -- controlled by their own minority of far rightwing Newbies With Teabags Stapled to Their Hats -- refused to compromise at all, they got what they wanted, they acted unconstitutionally and our collective credit rating was lowered thanks to them.

And then there's the other thought that says, who cares?  Standard & Poors were the idiots who gave Lehman Brothers triple-A ratings until they collapsed as well.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Dow Jones Disaster

Not since the worst days of the Great Recession in October of 2008 (during the Cheney/Bush disaster) has the Dow Jones plunged to this level, and lost over 500 points in one day.

Thanks, Regressive republican Congress and Teabaggers, for holding the country hostage so you could force through your agenda of taking in absolutely no additional revenue in the form of taxes on millionaires, or even the closing of tax loopholes that corporations take advantage of.  Thanks for bringing us to the brink of economic disaster to have your way, a technique no party has ever abused before in American history, bringing the US on the edge of defaulting on our loans. Thanks for not only refusing to spend money to push this sluggish economy forward, but for actually cutting spending and firing more and more government employees, thereby slowing down the economy even more, adding to the unemployment rolls, and diminishing the amount of payroll taxes the US collects because there are fewer people working.

The investors, speculators, buyers, and everyone remotely connected with the stock market are so jinxed by your selfish, destructive, un-American behavior, that the market lost over 500 points, plunging almost as low as it did at the end of the Bush administration. Investors fear plummeting into another recession.

Remember this graph? It's the last year of the Bush administration and the first year of the Obama administration.  You can see Obama's first year is a mirror image of Bush's last year.  Bush left after losing 750,000 jobs a month in the center of the graph. We lost fewer and fewer jobs during the Obama administration, as seen by the smaller and smaller blue lines, and then began gaining jobs. Last year we were gaining around 200,000 jobs a month!

Oh, but the Regressive republicans wouldn't stand for that very long.  Nope. Are they going to stand for economic improvement with a president that's the "wrong" party, the "wrong" age, the "wrong" color? Not with another election coming up in 2012.

The stimulus money that was pushing the economy ran out. There's been no talk of another stimulus. So instead of spending more temporarily to get us out of this deep, deadly Bush recession, the Regressive republicans did the exact opposite: cutting programs, cutting funding, and firing government employees.

Let's hope voters remember who insisted on this debt ceiling / job killing / spending cuts bill next year.