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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 02:59 PM
Number of posts: 64,117

Journal Archives

Jon Stewart: Newt Wants To Divorce Earth For Younger, Healthier Moon

more plus
VIDEO: http://2012.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/01/jon-stewart-newt-wants-to-divorce-earth-for-younger-healthier-moon.php?ref=fpnewsfeed

Mitt Romney's Whack a Pol Primary - Cartoon

Mitt Romney's Whack a Pol Primary - Cartoon

A cartoon about the 2012 Republican Presidential Primary that features a caricature of Mitt Romney playing Whack a Pol. The other Republican candidates caricatures are performing the traditional role of moles.


TAIBBI: "The administration is clearly listening to the Occupy movement."

Is Obama's 'Economic Populism' for Real?


Seriously: despite what people think, the crimes we’re dealing with are not terribly complicated, and any veteran investigator would grasp the basic concept – taking worthless crap and selling it as high-end merchandise – within ten minutes. The most important element contributing to the success of a committee like this is a locked room full of clean hands. And Breuer and Khuzami are not a good start.

But it’s too early to say what is going on. Everything that I’ve heard about Schneiderman in the last year leads me to believe that he’s the genuine article. I haven’t heard a single thing suggesting otherwise. But there are certainly a lot of curious elements here. For one thing, as Yves Smith points out, Schneiderman really isn’t getting much extra authority by taking this post. As New York AG he could already have taken this investigation anywhere he wanted:

It’s clear what the Administration is getting from getting Schneiderman aligned with them. It is much less clear why Schneiderman is signing up. He can investigate and prosecute NOW. He has subpoena powers, staff, and the Martin Act. He doesn’t need to join a Federal committee to get permission to do his job. And this is true for ALL the others agencies represented on this committee. They have investigative and enforcement powers they have chosen not to use. So we are supposed to believe that a group, ex Schneiderman, that has been remarkably complacent, will suddenly get religion on the mortgage front because they are all in a room and Schneiderman is a co-chair?

One thing we do know: Obama’s decision to tap Schneiderman publicly, and dump Geithner, and whisper about a millionaire’s tax, signals a shift in its public attitude toward the Wall Street corruption issue. The administration is clearly listening to the Occupy movement. Whether it’s now acting on their complaints, or just trying to look like it’s doing something, is another question. It’s way too early to tell. But it’s certainly very interesting.

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/blogs/taibblog/is-obamas-economic-populism-for-real-20120126#ixzz1kgKVU3bD

Running Mate - By Mike Luckovich

Mitch Daniels hands the president a win

Mitch Daniels hands the president a win
Daniels: "The late Steve Jobs — what a fitting name he had — created more of them than all those stimulus dollars the president borrowed and blew."

It would be nice if Republicans -- candidates and the rest -- could get their facts straight. Mitch Daniels committed a serious blooper during his response to the State of the Union speech. In doing so, he killed the Republicans' effort to hang Obama with the auto industry bailout.

Paul Krugman picks up on the blooper.

Mr. Daniels tried to wrap his party in the mantle of the late Steve Jobs, whom he portrayed as a great job creator — which is one thing that Jobs definitely wasn’t. And if we ask why Apple has created so few American jobs, we get an insight into what is wrong with the ideology dominating much of our politics. ...Paul Krugman, NYT


Although Apple is now America’s biggest U.S. corporation as measured by market value, it employs only 43,000 people in the United States, a tenth as many as General Motors employed when it was the largest American firm.

Apple does, however, indirectly employ around 700,000 people in its various suppliers. Unfortunately, almost none of those people are in America.
...Paul Krugman, NYT



FEDERAL JUDGE FINDS SAME-SEX LONG-TERM CARE BAN UNCONSTITUTIONAL | U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken says she will likely overturn an aspect of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act that excludes California state employees who are in same-sex domestic partnerships from receiving federal tax benefits related to long-term health coverage as the law appears to be “motivated by antigay animus”. In a written statement, Wilken charges that Federal officials “have failed to show a plausible, legitimate rationale for excluding registered domestic partners from (the law’s) list of eligible family members (for the tax benefits), and the court can think of none.” Although Judge Wilken has indicated she is inclined to overturn the law, the ruling determined that the potential lawsuit can only proceed on behalf of spouses and registered domestic partners. President Obama has agreed the law is unconstitutional, and said he would no longer defend the law in court — a job that has now been assigned to lawyers hired by House Republican leaders. — Fatima Najiy



A federal judge signaled Thursday that she's likely to strike down a federal law that denies long-term health coverage to the same-sex domestic partners of state employees in California, saying it appears to be based on prejudice against gays and lesbians.

U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken of Oakland said domestic partners could join a lawsuit challenging an aspect of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act - its exclusion of same-sex couples from federal tax benefits that are essential to participation in a long-term health care program for state employees.

The suit is one of two in Bay Area federal courts challenging the 1996 law, which denies federal marital benefits to same-sex spouses.

President Obama said in February 2011 that he considered the law unconstitutional and would no longer defend it in court, a role now assigned to lawyers hired by House Republican leaders.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/01/26/BA631MV73C.DTL#ixzz1kg5KROOz


Bye, Newt

January 27, 2012
Posted by John Cassidy

At one-thirty this morning, Intrade, the political betting site, was putting the probability of him winning the nomination at just eight per cent, and the probability of Mitt Romney getting to take on Barack Obama at ninety-two per cent.

Betting markets, like all futures markets, are far from infallible. In this case, though, I think they have it right. With the Florida polls having swung against Newt after a lackluster performance in Monday’s debate, and with the Republican establishment turning on him in savage fashion, he desperately needed a strong performance last night. But an event that the media, myself included, had billed as the debate of the year turned out to be a big disappointment—unless, that is, you are Romney or one of his supporters. “I thought it was a terrific night,” the Mittster said to CNN’s Gloria Borger as he left the Jacksonville stage, sporting a grin as wide as a Cheshire cat’s. “I think it’s going to give me the boost I need in the remaining couple of days of the election.”

From Gingrich, there was no comment, which was pretty much what he had offered up all night.

Read more http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/johncassidy/2012/01/alas-poor-newt.html#ixzz1kg2Hv08m


Duke Tells Newt He'd Have The Felon Vote Locked Down

Duke Tells Newt He'd Have The Felon Vote Locked Down

Here's an endorsement Newt Gingrich probably doesn't need: former Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-CA), currently serving a 100 month sentence in federal prison after being convicted of bribery in one of the largest congressional corruption cases in recent memory. Cunningham, the inspiration for the TPM Golden Dukes and a TPM pen pal, acknowledged in a letter to Newt he forwarded to the Voice of San Diego, that his endorsement "would do more harm than good." But he was hoping Gingrich would help out...


He Knew All About Those Newsletters: "he always got to see the final product.....He would proof it"

But people close to Paul’s operations said he was deeply involved in the company that produced the newsletters, Ron Paul & Associates, and closely monitored its operations, signing off on articles and speaking to staff members virtually every day.

“It was his newsletter, and it was under his name, so he always got to see the final product. . . . He would proof it,” said Renae Hathway, a former secretary in Paul’s company and a supporter of the Texas congressman.


Romney Campaign Hurting Vulture Capitalists: “Private equity is more lucrative when it’s kept quiet"

.......the vulture capitalists are having their fee fees hurt because the Romney campaign is drawing attention to the way they do business and pension funds are now reluctant to give them money:

Romney Seen Costing Private Equity Fundraising

By Cristina Alesci and Devin Banerjee - Jan 27, 2012 6:43 AM PT


Mitt Romney’s campaign for the Republican presidential nomination may be costing his private- equity backers a lot more than they bargained for.

Attacks by opponents portraying Bain Capital LLC, Romney and other buyout managers as corporate looters who enrich themselves at the expense of ordinary workers have put a spotlight on the industry that will affect negotiations about future investments, according to officials and trustees at public pensions. As firms struggle to raise funds, pensions may be more reluctant to commit money and may ask for more details on job creation and push for lower fees, these officials said.


The debate is affecting private-equity managers, including Romney’s former firm, Boston-based Bain Capital, as they’re competing for a shrinking pool of investor dollars. Fundraising slowed in the third quarter to the weakest pace since before the global financial crisis and stayed near that level in the final three months of the year, according to London-based researcher Preqin Ltd.


“We all know that private-equity managers make a lot of money and we know how they do their business, but when it’s on the front page it causes us to think twice when making investment decisions,” Atwood said. “Private equity is more lucrative when it’s kept quiet.

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