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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 11,538

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Your call out reminds me of McCarthy's fictional "list"

During a speech in Wheeling, West Virginia, Senator Joseph McCarthy (Republican-Wisconsin) claims that he has a list with the names of over 200 members of the Department of State that are "known communists." The speech vaulted McCarthy to national prominence and sparked a nationwide hysteria about subversives in the American government.

Speaking before the Ohio County Women's Republican Club in Wheeling, West Virginia, Senator McCarthy waved before his audience a piece of paper. According to the only published newspaper account of the speech, McCarthy said that, "I have here in my hand a list of 205 that were known to the Secretary of State as being members of the Communist Party and who nevertheless are still working and shaping the policy of the State Department." In the next few weeks, the number fluctuated wildly, with McCarthy stating at various times that there were 57, or 81, or 10 communists in the Department of State. In fact, McCarthy never produced any solid evidence that there was even one communist in the State Department.


It also reminds me of the crap one would find at one of the blogs like Free Republic which have made a career of attacking Will Pitt. I'm sure that Mr. Pitt, like all of us, has had his ups and downs, and made a few mistakes along the way. I certainly didn't always agree with his POV in the early days of DU. However he has grown and matured with the years - particularly with his marriage and parenthood, and is a rare stalwart for progressive Dems. You don't have to like him, but I don't care about your personal opinion of him. This is not Dear Abby. Respond to the facts and opinions in his writings, if you disagree with those. Otherwise DU is not the venue for personal call-outs.

Never a constitutional scholar or expert in either academia OR the courtroom

I explained in detail in post 83 on this thread why Obama has no cred to call himself (or allow others to call him) a constitutional law PROFESSOR or SCHOLAR.

And I would add to that, that Obama was neither an actual trial lawyer NOR a constitutional lawyer
Senior attorneys at the small firm where he worked say he was a strong writer and researcher, but was involved in relatively few cases -- about 30 -- and spent only four years as a full-time lawyer before entering politics.

For purposes of comparison, i.e., Obama worked on 30 cases in 4 years - the first law firm which I worked for upon being admitted to the bar was a civil litigation firm. By the end of my FIRST year, I had a caseload of 40 cases for which I was the attorney of record, i.e., with full responsibility/client contact/handling depositons/ arguing motions/working with expert witnesses/ and, if the case didn't settle/ trying the case. That was the norm in my firm. My clients included Chrysler, General Electric, Otis Elevator, Remington, national construction firms, and were primarily product liability and commercial construction cases. I'm not comparing O's 30 cases in 4 years to a bunch of slip & falls/whiplash claims. By the end of my second year I had argued cases in the federal district court and federal court of appeals, as well as state trial and appellate courts. This was not a big deal - this was the norm for the lawyers my firm hired.

The name partner who recruited Obama described O thusly:

Judson Miner, head of the firm that bears his name, recruited Obama. Obama took time to complete "Dreams From My Father," then joined the 13-attorney firm. "He was doing the work that any first-year or second-year associate would do," Miner said. "In litigation, he was doing basic research and writing memos. . . . In the first couple years he would play a very minor role. He wouldn't know , so he would take the lead from whoever was supervising his work."

Obama arrived in Chicago in 1993 with a degree from Harvard Law School and was hired as a junior lawyer at the firm then known as Davis, Miner, Barnhill & Gallard. He helped represent clients in civil and voting rights matters and wrongful firings, argued a single case (not a constitutional law or civil rights case) before a federal appellate court, and took the lead in writing a suit to expand voter registration. No mention that he ever went to court on that lawsuit. That one appellate case he touts? He fought the good fight for a securities trader. How did that fit in with his claims re community organizer, fighting for civil rights?
" He took the lead arguing a 1994 case before the U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals on behalf of a securities trader who had been improperly fired. The court ruled for his client." Yeah he had cases in the projects, but it was defending a slumlord from a tenant and in another case, defending a slumlord for failing to provide heat for low income tenants on the South Side in the winter.

But the firm also handled routine legal matters and real estate. Obama spent about 70% of his time on voting rights, civil rights and employment, generally as a junior associate/b]. The rest of his time was spent on matters related to real estate transactions, filing incorporation papers and defending clients against minor lawsuits.

In one instance, Obama defended a nonprofit corporation that owns low-income housing projects against a lawsuit in which a man alleged that he slipped and fell because of poor maintenance. Obama got the suit dismissed.

In another case, Obama appeared on behalf of a nonprofit corporation that provided healthcare for poor people. A woman who claimed income of less than $8,000 a year had sued Obama's client to obtain a $336 payment for baby-sitting services; Obama's client paid up, and the case was settled.

In 1994, Obama appeared in Cook County court on behalf of Woodlawn Preservation & Investment Corp., defending it against a suit by the city, which alleged that the company failed to provide heat for low-income tenants on the South Side during the winter.

Those were not the cases Obama highlighted in the self-portrait drawn in his first memoir, "Dreams From My Father."


O admittted bipartisanship means Dems ignore the poor, the environment, etc.

I just went back and reread the NYT article I linked to above and came across this absolute gem from O's teaching days re the negative impact of bipartisanship on the needs of the poor and that bipartisanship means abandoning the idea that the govt. can play a role in issues of poverty, race discrimination, sex discrimination or environmental protection.

So we see, he made very informed choices throughout his presidency when it came to caving to the GOP. He has more than proved himself correct in the way that his overwhelming bipartisanship has played out with elevating the wealthiest at the expense of the rest of us, i.e., "the poor", and his concommitant choices re supporting fracking, Keystone and opening up the Atlantic Coast to drilling.

Challenging Assumptions

Liberals flocked to his classes, seeking refuge. After all, the professor was a progressive politician who backed child care subsidies and laws against racial profiling, and in a 1996 interview with the school newspaper sounded skeptical of President Bill Clinton’s efforts to reach across the aisle.

On the national level, bipartisanship usually means Democrats ignore the needs of the poor and abandon the idea that government can play a role in issues of poverty, race discrimination, sex discrimination or environmental protection,” Mr. Obama said.

Obama is to Constitutional Scholar as a paramedic is to board certified MD

Obama was never a Constituional Scholar; nor was he a law "professor". To the extent he presented himself as such, OR allowed others to represent himself as such, he was lying. I am reprinting below what I posted in DU several years ago. I've taught undergrads, grad students and law students at a small college, a large state university, a paralegal institute, and a private law school, including sitting in on the faculty senate meetings.

I've written papers, co-written text books, edited text books, presented papers and sat as a panelist at academic gatherings, etc. In other words, I really, really know what it means to refer to oneself as a professor at a university, or as a scholar in a given field. I taught for a total of 8 years. When I looked at Obama's curriculum vita, I saw none of what I would expect from someone claiming to be a scholar in a particular academic field. I did further research, particularly on what went on at the University of Chicago law school. My conclusion? Obama is to a Constitutional Scholar as a paramedic is to a board certified medical specialist.

He was NEVER a constitutional SCHOLAR, never published a single scholarly paper, and wasn't on tenure track.

He was a "senior lecturer" - that's the lowest level of teacher at a law school, below Full, Assistant, Associate, Adjunct and or Visiting Professors - at University of Chicago. Lecturers are not on a tenure track. He never even taught the basic, traditional course in Constitutional Law, required of all first year law students, and covered in detail in state bar examinations.

He taught three courses:
At the school, Mr. Obama taught three courses, never more than one per term (i.e, part-time). His most traditional course was in the narrow constitutional area of (1) DUE PROCESS AND EQUAL PROTECTION . His (2) VOTING RIGHTS class traced the evolution of election law, from the disenfranchisement of blacks to contemporary debates over districting and campaign finance. His most original course, a historical and political seminar as much as a legal one, was on (3)RACISM AND LAW.

Nor could his views be gleaned from scholarship; Mr. Obama has never published any.

Very interesting article on his years as a part-time instructor at the University of Chicago Law School. He was a popular teacher, but refused to intellectually engage with his fellow faculty. One sentence particularly sticks with me as showing that even at the beginning of his political career, he identified his future success and power as dependent upon wealthy whites.

"Before he helped redraw his own State Senate district, making it whiter and wealthier, he taught districting as a racially fraught study in how power is secured."

Bill Clinton Praises Richard Scaife at memorial service

If you've got the stomach for it, read this whole article from Richard Scaife's uber conservative newspaper detailing Bill Clinton's gushing praise for Scaife at a memorial service. Y'all recall that in HRC's first primary run for the presidency, she took the initiative to request a meeting with Scaife and came to his paper's Greensburg offices to meet with him and request his support. We'll never know the quid-pro-quo HRC promised him, but she got his support. Scaife took that secret to his grave, and HRC"s not talking. Cough (future shades of Wall Street , Goldman-Sachs) cough!

Whatevs, Scaife requested having his good bud, Bill, speak at his memorial service.

I'm sure all your hearts will be warmed to know that Bill played the grandfather-to-be card, when he stated he wished Scaife had lived to be able to write more and that Bill was glad Scaife had made sure that his papers were in a position to "be there for our children and our grandchildren.”
How the hell could he say that about an uber-conservative chain of newspapers? Do he & HRC endorse it's political positions? Did they get Chelsea a subscription? Can we expect the same tribute when Rupert Murdoch dies?
Read more: http://triblive.com/news/adminpage/6550109-74/clinton-scaife-differences#ixzz39KkxqtQu
Follow us: @triblive on Twitter | triblive on Facebook

“I think the counterintuitive friendship we formed is a good symbol of Richard Mellon Scaife's legacy. He fought as hard as he could for what he believed, but he never thought he had to be blind or deaf” to re-evaluating his positions, no matter how closely held, Clinton said.

The description “counterintuitive” was borrowed from his wife, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who used the word to describe her meeting with Tribune-Review reporters and editors in 2008, during the hotly contested Democratic presidential primary in Pennsylvania.

The paper's editorial board endorsed Hillary Clinton in the April primary election, and Scaife penned an opinion piece praising the New York Democrat. “You need to know that she treasures that column and that experience,” Clinton said.

H. Yale Gutnick, Scaife's longtime friend and attorney, introduced the 42nd president, saying Scaife asked him before his death to invite Clinton to the memorial to make it a special day. Gutnick is chairman of the Trib Total Media board of directors.

Read more: http://triblive.com/news/adminpage/6550109-74/clinton-scaife-differences#ixzz39KiMxXTz
Follow us: @triblive on Twitter | triblive on Facebook

Venezuela to Send Aid to Gaza, Welcome Refugees, as Regional Leaders Condemn Assault

Source: venezuelanalysis.com

For over a decade, Venezuela has been an ardent supporter of Palestine. Former President Hugo Chavez was an outspoken critic of Israel's occupation of Palestine, and broke off diplomatic relations with Israel in 2009.

“ wants to convey ... solidarity at this time to the thousands of men, women, children and elderly people who are being massacred in Gaza by the state of Israel,” Jaua stated.

Last night, President Nicolas Maduro also announced that Venezuela would build a shelter in the South American country to welcome Palestinian child survivors of the conflict. Speaking on national television, he said that his government would suggest that regional allies do the same.

“We’re proposing in the heart of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) that a shelter is created in our countries carrying the name of Hugo Chavez, to bring in the children of this war,” he stated.

Read more: http://venezuelanalysis.com/news/10820

Pennsylvania doctors advised of deadly Ebola threat

(snippets from article)
The Pennsylvania Medical Society has alerted doctors to the threat of Ebola, even though the risk of the disease appearing in the United States is considered low.

The medical society, relaying advice from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, used its electronic newsletter to advise Pennsylvania doctors to learn the symptoms of Ebola, and be aware of patients who might have traveled recently to West Africa.

People who have been to areas where the outbreak is occurring are advised to watch for symptoms for ten days, and people who have had direct contact should be monitored for symptoms for 21 days.

Citing the Washington Post, the Pennsylvania Medical Society informed its members Connecticut-based Doctors Without Borders has more than 300 staff members responding to the epidemic.


Reading the entire article, only snippets of which I posted per the 4 paragraph limitation, there are several internal contradictions in what the CDC is telling these docs.
First the CDC is saying it's unlikely someone could bring it back to the United States, since most flights from West Africa to the United States require stops in one or more countries. But in the next paragraph it talks about symptoms not appearing for 10 or 21 days.

Obviously people flying from Africa to the US would typically have no more than an overnight stop elsewhere - plenty of time for them to still be asymptomatic, regardless of how many stops/transfers in other countries.

The final inconsistency is regarding the time during which one should watch for symptoms to appear. Is it 10 days OR 21 days? Why such a difference? The standard medical decision rule is, "When in doubt, treat." That should be modified to "When in doubt, isolate."

U.S. Issues Travel Warning For 3 African Countries Hit By Ebola Outbreak

Source: Huffington Post

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. health officials on Thursday warned Americans not to travel to the three African countries hit by an outbreak of Ebola.

The travel advisory applies to non-essential travel to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. The outbreak in those West Africa countries has killed more than 700 people this year.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say the risk of the deadly disease coming to the United States remains small. The last time the federal agency issued such a travel warning was in 2003 because of a SARS outbreak in Asia.

At the White House, press secretary Josh Earnest said the U.S. is looking into Medevac options to bring two American aid workers diagnosed with Ebola back to the U.S. While the U.S. government would facilitate the response, private companies would be used.

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/31/us-travel-warning-ebola_n_5638429.html

Where's the work?: It’s hard to justify Corbett adviser Ron Tomalis’ high salary

(Pittsburgh Post-Gazette editorial)

July 30, 2014 12:00 AM
By the Editorial Board

During the two years that Ron Tomalis was state education secretary, he was one of the most visible members of Gov. Tom Corbett’s Cabinet, running one of the largest departments and serving as the public face of significant administration efforts.

But since his reassignment 14 months ago as the governor’s special adviser on higher education, he has been nearly invisible to the public. Just what tasks Mr. Tomalis has been accomplishing to earn his $139,542 salary aren’t clear either. For an administration that was recently faced with a $1.5 billion deficit, it’s hard to see how such spending can be justified.

Officials in the governor’s office and at the education department weren’t eager to answer questions about Mr. Tomalis until it was obvious that a report by the Post-Gazette’s Mary Niederberger and Bill Schackner was to be published. Their article in Sunday’s editions explained that Mr. Tomalis’ work calendar from June 1, 2013, to June 1, 2014, shows weeks and months with little activity, including 20 weeks that appear to have no work-related appointments. It listed some meetings in which he did not participate.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/opinion/2014/07/30/Where-s-the-work/stories/201407300027#ixzz393ZmY3gz

Henry Siegman, Leading Voice of US Jewry, on Gaza: "A Slaughter of Innocents"


Given his background, what American Jewish leader Henry Siegman has to say about Israel’s founding in 1948 through the current assault on Gaza may surprise you. From 1978 to 1994, Siegman served as executive director of the American Jewish Congress, long described as one of the nation’s "big three" Jewish organizations along with the American Jewish Committee and the Anti-Defamation League. Born in Germany three years before the Nazis came to power in 1933, Siegman’s family eventually moved to the United States. His father was a leader of the European Zionist movement that pushed for the creation of a Jewish state. In New York, Siegman studied the religion and was ordained as an Orthodox rabbi by Yeshiva Torah Vodaas, later becoming head of the Synagogue Council of America. After his time at the American Jewish Congress, Siegman became a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. He now serves as president of the U.S./Middle East Project. In the first of our two-part interview, Siegman discusses the assault on Gaza, the myths surrounding Israel’s founding in 1948, and his own background as a German-Jewish refugee who fled Nazi occupation to later become a leading American Jewish voice and now vocal critic of Israel’s policies in the Occupied Territories.

"When one thinks that this is what is necessary for Israel to survive, that the Zionist dream is based on the repeated slaughter of innocents on a scale that we’re watching these days on television, that is really a profound, profound crisis — and should be a profound crisis in the thinking of all of us who were committed to the establishment of the state and to its success," Siegman says. Responding to Israel’s U.S.-backed claim that its assault on Gaza is necessary because no country would tolerate the rocket fire from militants in Gaza, Siegman says: "What undermines this principle is that no country and no people would live the way that Gazans have been made to live. The question of the morality of Israel’s action depends, in the first instance, on the question, couldn’t Israel be doing something this disaster that is playing out now, in terms of the destruction of human life? Couldn’t they have done something that did not require that cost? And the answer is, sure, they could have ended the occupation."
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