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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
Number of posts: 48,308

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oh dear...what should we tell Megyn Kelly?


Elizabeth Warren: "This isn't about me. This is about the issues..."

Wednesday, December 18, 2013
Chris Hayes asks the right questions, Elizabeth Warren gives the right answers.
by David Atkins

Chris Hayes and Elizabeth Warren had a great conversation. Chris Hayes rightly calls out the Democratic Party for failing to do enough about the decline of the middle class over the last 40 years, and Elizabeth Warren gives the right answers:

My favorite part of the conversation is this, wherein Warren explains the history of the struggling middle-class and the fundamentally broken and unsustainable economy in which we live.

WARREN: This isn't about me. This is about the issues, about what's happening to America's families. America's middle class, America's hard working families have been hammered on for a generation now. And it's not just one problem. It's one after another after another. They've been hit with flat wages or even slightly declining wages. And all the core expenses of being middle class, of housing, of healthcare, of what it costs to keep a child in daycare or send a kid to college, to medical care. All of those costs have shot through the roof. That has put a squeeze on these families. They sent as many people as they could into the workforce, in two-parent families, they sent both Mom and Dad or both Moms into the workforce, but it still wasn't enough. They turned to debt and then they were targeted by a credit industry that figured out you could make huge profits from lending to people who were already in a financial squeeze. And so what's happened is that America's middle class has just been under this enormous pressure, and parts of it are beginning to break apart. Our once steady, solid, almost dull middle class, that was the idea. We were so sure it would always be there. Pieces are starting to break away. Families can no longer say to their kids, "you're going to do better than I did." And that's what it is we have to attack.

HAYES: Senator, here's my question. The trend you're talking about and have been tracking and are trying to address in legislation like this and other pieces of legislation you've introduced, these are 30 to 40 year trends.

: Yep.

HAYES: I mean, we've seen this kind of system, this sort of version of American capitalism, and the Democratic Party has been in power during periods in which that has exacerbated. Democrats voted for the bankruptcy bill which you opposed strenuously. I don't know if Democrats have done enough to combat this. Has the Democratic Party focused enough on this core issue?

WARREN: Look, the question is what are we going to do going forward? We have to outline our priorities and we have to be willing to get in there and fight for them. And that's what all of this is about. It's about how we fight for our college kids, the ones who are trying to get an education and being crushed by student loan debt. It's about how we fight for seniors to protect Social Security and to help people get more money into retirement savings. And in this particular case with this bill, it's how we fight for people who have been hit with one economic blow or another and are out there trying to compete in the job market and just want a level playing field. You're right, the pieces come together because a lot is broken, and it's going to take a lot of pieces to get it fixed again.

The reason there's a big movement to draft Elizabeth Warren for President is simply that she gets it. She understands the history. She doesn't pay lip-service to the middle class while actually pushing for higher asset growth and broad social equality. She understands that the economy is fundamentally broken and requires big changes for the middle class to survive.


Defense Bill Gives Obama Rare Guantanamo Victory (Many detainees may be closer to home)

Source: NPR

Defense Bill Gives Obama Rare Guantanamo Victory
December 18, 2013 2:52 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Many detainees at Guantanamo Bay may be closer to heading home under a bipartisan deal reached in Congress that gives President Barack Obama a rare victory in his fight to close the prison for terror suspects.

The compromise is part of a broad defense bill awaiting final passage in the Senate this week. The House approved the measure last Thursday. It's the first time since Obama came to office promising to close Guantanamo that Congress is moving to ease restrictions instead of strengthen them. And it could signal changing political views of the prison for terrorism suspects now that the war in Afghanistan is winding down.

Obama's achievement was somewhat a surprise, after the Republican-controlled House earlier this year voted overwhelmingly to make it harder to transfer detainees. But the deal to move in the opposite direction passed with hardly any opposition and little attention — perhaps overshadowed by more prominent defense bill debates over Iran sanctions, military sexual assaults and spying by the National Security Agency.

But even with the deal, Obama still faces big obstacles to closing Guantanamo. Congress has effectively blocked him from doing so for his first five years in office, and he faces declining clout in his final three. Yet the president seems determined as part of his legacy to push for closure of the prison he argues never should have been opened and "has become a symbol around the world for an America that flouts the rule of law."

Read more: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=255248892

Inequality in Six Panels, featuring Lucky Ducky


So, "Who stole the people's money?"



Awards they couldn’t accept: The tragic irony of Greenwald, Poitras and Snowden - by Jesselyn Radack

TUESDAY, DEC 17, 2013 08:43 AM PST
Awards they couldn’t accept: The tragic irony of Greenwald, Poitras and Snowden
When I was honored as a top global thinker last week, 3 of my co-recipients didn't come. The reason why is chilling


Awards they couldn't accept: The tragic irony of Greenwald, Poitras and Snowden

I was humbled to have dinner in Washington, D.C., last week with an incredible group of my co-recipients recognized in Foreign Policy magazine’s 2013 list of leading global thinkers. Conspicuously absent in the category of “The Surveillance State and Its Discontents” were the discontents: Glenn Greenwald, Laura Poitras and Edward Snowden — not because they did not want to attend but because these three American global thinkers are unwelcome in the United States.

Greenwald has been accused of being a co-conspirator to break the law. The U.S. government has regularly harassed, searched and intimidated documentary filmmaker Poitras at the border. And the U.S. government revoked Edward Snowden’s passport.

Greenwald, Poitras and Snowden are on a growing list of journalists, activists and whistle-blowers who are unable to travel freely because of their First Amendment-protected activities. Their fears of persecution are sadly not exaggerated. The United Kingdom detained Greenwald’s husband, Brazilian David Miranda, for nine hours and charged him with violating an anti-terrorism law because he had met with Poitras and carried information (not some illegal substance or terrorist plans) for Greenwald. WikiLeaks journalist Sarah Harrison, who literally rescued whistle-blower Snowden from Hong Kong, has been advised by her attorneys not to return home to the U.K. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has long been the target of a U.S. criminal investigation, and was forced to seek asylum from Ecuador, but cannot get there.

The U.S. has promised not to torture Snowden, but such a “promise” only raises the question: Is that how low a democracy should set the bar — at not torturing someone — rather than providing due process and abiding by international humanitarian standards? The Obama administration’s aggressive prosecution of whistle-blowers under the Espionage Act and willingness to embroil journalists in “leak” investigations and prosecutions casts doubt on the legitimacy of the criminal justice system.


Chef Fired before Christmas, Uses Restaurant’s Twitter to Get Tasty Revenge

When you’re fired one week before Christmas, with a seven-and-a-half month daughter at home, what are you left do to? You could give up. You could go down without a fight….

Or, you could get a little revenge 21st century style.

In Oxfordshire, England, ex-head chef Jim Knight of The Plough, was fired for requesting a weekend alone with his family on Christmas. He then took over the company’s Twitter account to make sure the whole world knew about it. Among the many things he writes using The Plough’s Twitter, he says, “We’d like to inform you that we’ve just fired our head chef” and ” Unfortunately he wanted to have a weekend off this month and Christmas Day this year for family commitments so we thought we’d sack him.” When people accused him of hacking the companies Twitter account, he took to his personal Twitter handle to clear the air:

Read more at http://foodbeast.com/2013/12/17/chief-fired-just-before-christmas-gets-revenge/#Sr2OrVW7VkiupbPR.99

Mike Luckovich --- The REAL Santa

LOL: Issa To Texas Health Official: 'You Need To Watch More Fox News'

House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) on Monday told Dr. Randy Farris, a Texas health administrator for the federal government, to watch more Fox News after the health official did not satisfactorily answer Issa's questions about HealthCare.Gov, according to the Dallas Morning News.

"You need to watch more Fox News, I'm afraid," Issa retorted after Farris claimed that consumers' personal information was not stored on the health exchange website.

Issa was in Texas presiding over a field hearing focused on exposing flaws in the navigator program, which employs people to help Americans sign up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act.


McCain To Reid: 'I'm Going To Kick The Crap Out Of You'

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) was predictably angry last month when Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) invoked the "nuclear option" to abolish the filibuster.

So the Arizona Republican gave Reid a piece of his mind on the Senate floor, according to a New York Times Magazine profile of McCain published Wednesday.

"Harry, I’m going to go kick the crap out of you," McCain said he told Reid, minutes before giving a speech in which he used Reid's own words to brand the rules change a "black chapter in the history of the Senate."

"John, I would expect nothing less," Reid replied, according to McCain.

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