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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
Number of posts: 67,637

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Behold the genius that is today's Republican Party:

For the past several years, congressional Republicans have focused relentlessly on a single message: Washington — led by President Obama — is spending too much money, and it needs to stop.

But according to new Washington Post-ABC News polling, that laser-like focus isn’t helping Republicans win the argument over federal spending — with 67 percent of those tested disapproving of the “way Republicans in Congress are handling federal spending.”


Scalia: Voting Rights Act Is ‘Perpetuation Of Racial Entitlement’

Source: Think Progress

Scalia: Voting Rights Act Is ‘Perpetuation Of Racial Entitlement’

WASHINGTON, DC — There were audible gasps in the Supreme Court’s lawyer’s lounge, where audio of the oral argument is pumped in for members of the Supreme Court bar, when Justice Antonin Scalia offered his assessment of a key provision of the Voting Rights Act. He called it a “perpetuation of racial entitlement.”

The comment came as part of a larger riff on a comment Scalia made the last time the landmark voting law was before the justices. Noting the fact that the Voting Rights Act reauthorization passed 98-0 when it was before the Senate in 2006, Scalia claimed four years ago that this unopposed vote actually undermines the law: “The Israeli supreme court, the Sanhedrin, used to have a rule that if the death penalty was pronounced unanimously, it was invalid, because there must be something wrong there.”

That was an unusual comment when it was made, but Scalia’s expansion on it today raises concerns that his suspicion of the Act is rooted much more in racial resentment than in a general distrust of unanimous votes. Scalia noted when the Voting Rights Act was first enacted in 1965, it passed over 19 dissenters. In subsequent reauthorizations, the number of dissenters diminished, until it passed the Senate without dissent seven years ago. Scalia’s comments suggested that this occurred, not because of a growing national consensus that racial disenfranchisement is unacceptable, but because lawmakers are too afraid to be tarred as racists. His inflammatory claim that the Voting Rights Act is a “perpetuation of racial entitlement” came close to the end of a long statement on why he found a landmark law preventing race discrimination in voting to be suspicious.

It should be noted that even one of Scalia’s fellow justices felt the need to call out his remark. Justice Sotomayor asked the attorney challenging the Voting Right Act whether he thought voting rights are a racial entitlement as soon as he took the podium for rebuttal.

A transcript of the oral argument will be available soon, and we will post Scalia’s quote in its full context. We will also post audio of Scalia’s words when they become available.

Read more: http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/02/27/1646891/scalia-voting-rights-act-is-perpetuation-of-racial-entitlement/

His choicest line today may have been this: “I don’t think there is anything to be gained by any Senator to vote against continuation of this act.” Who does he think he is, Chris freaking Matthews? Since when is it a Justice’s job to divine when the people’s representatives are acting from pure motives, and when they are moved by crass “racial entitlements,” as he describes the guarantees that allowed millions of African Americans to vote for the first time? Call that what it is, but it sure as hell isn’t originalism. It’s just lawless free-styling.

MORE on this:


Parks becomes the first black woman to be honored with a full-length statue in the Capitol’s Statuary Hall. A bust of another black woman, abolitionist Sojourner Truth, sits in the Capitol Visitors Center.

Obama said that with the installation of the statue, Parks, who died in 2005, has taken her rightful place among those who have shaped the course of U.S. history. He said her presence in Capitol would serve to “remind us no matter how humble or lofty our positions, just what it is that leadership requires.”

Obama and House Speaker John Boehner jointly led the unveiling, standing with the statue between them as they grasped and pulled in opposite directions on the braided cord that held the covering. Congressional leaders in the House and Senate joined Parks’ niece in tugging on the cord.

“We do well by placing a statue of her here,” Obama said, “but we can do no greater honor to her memory than to carry forward the power of her principle and a courage born of conviction.”


· A Reminder: What the Hagel Farce Was Actually About

· A Reminder: What the Hagel Farce Was Actually About – Outsourced to Peter Beinart

The right’s core problem with Hagel wasn’t his alleged anti-Semitism. From Jerry Falwell to Glenn Beck to Rupert Murdoch, conservatives have overlooked far more egregiously anti-Jewish statements when their purveyors subscribed to a hawkish foreign-policy line. The right’s core problem with Hagel was that he had challenged the Bush doctrine. Against a Republican foreign-policy class that generally minimizes the dangers of war with Iran, Hagel had insisted that the lesson of Iraq is that preventive wars are dangerous, uncontrollable things. “Once you start,” he warned in 2010, “you’d better be prepared to find 100,000 troops.”


Obama is sending an undocumented worker to live in your house while he awaits his deportation trial.

Right-Wing Poutrage
by BooMan
Wed Feb 27th, 2013 at 08:47:19 AM EST

The Republicans crack me up when they complain about the president being political and "campaigning" against them. Here they are, taking a meat-axe to the federal budget, offering to give the president more "flexibility" to wield the axe (so they can blame him for the resulting outrage), and when the administration delays the deployment of an air craft carrier or decides to release a bunch of undocumented workers from detention, they are outraged. "Couldn't he find the money elsewhere," they shriek.

Yeah, he could have, but he didn't because you are acting like assholes. And, in any case, supervised release is more cost-effective than holding people in prison where you have to guard and feed them.

Next right-wing conspiracy? If Boehner won't negotiate, Obama is sending an undocumented worker to live in your house while he awaits his deportation trial.

- See more at: http://www.boomantribune.com/#sthash.ofRGTdAm.dpuf

Whose deportation trial? The worker, Boehner, or Obama? If it's a wingnut conspiracy, it could be any of the above. - See more at: http://www.boomantribune.com/story/2013/2/27/84719/4285#sthash.Bb5VOCTL.dpuf

Get off their ass?! Boehner just came off a week-long vacation!

John Boehner: Sequester Requires Senate To Get 'Off Their Ass'


Federal Appeals Court: There Is No Second Amendment Right To A Concealed Firearm

Source: Think Progress

Federal Appeals Court: There Is No Second Amendment Right To A Concealed Firearm
By Ian Millhiser on Feb 27, 2013 at 10:30 am

A panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, which included a Reagan and a George W. Bush appointee, held unanimously on Friday that the Second Amendment does not protect a right to carry a concealed firearm:

The Heller opinion notes that, “like most rights, the right secured by the Second Amendment is not unlimited. From Blackstone through the 19th-century cases, commentators and courts routinely explained that the right was not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose.” As an example of the limited nature of the Second Amendment right to keep and carry arms, the Court observed that “the majority of the 19th-century courts to consider the question held that prohibitions on carrying concealed weapons were lawful under the Second Amendment or state analogues.” And the Court stressed that “nothing in our opinion should be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions.”

There can be little doubt that bans on the concealed carrying of firearms are longstanding. In Heller, the Supreme Court cited several early cases in support of the statement that most nineteenth century courts approved of such prohibitions. We note, however, that this view was not unanimous. Nevertheless, most states enacted laws banning the carrying of concealed weapons” in the nineteenth century.

It should be noted that the court left open the question of whether a concealed carry ban is permitted in a jurisdiction that also bans open carry of firearms. Nevertheless, this decision is a reminder that, despite the Supreme Court’s decision in Heller expanding the scope of the Second Amendment, states and the federal government retain broad leeway to enact many gun safety laws.

Read more: http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/02/27/1637831/federal-appeals-court-there-is-no-second-amendment-right-to-a-concealed-firearm/

The Future Is Dark

WARREN TO BERNANKE: "So when are we gonna get rid of 'too big to fail?'"

Sen. Warren continues to strike fear among the biggest of the oligarchs - enjoy watching!

"We've now understood this problem for nearly five years," she said. "So when are we gonna get rid of 'too big to fail?'"

Though Bernanke questioned the accuracy of the $83 billion figure, he admitted that big banks get some subsidy. But he said the market was wrong to give banks any subsidy at all (in the form of lower borrowing costs), insisting that the government will in fact let banks fail. The 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law has given policymakers the tools to safely shut down big, failing banks, he claimed.

But when repeatedly pressed by Warren, Bernanke's confidence seemed to waver.

"The subsidy is coming because of market expectations that the government would bail out these firms if they failed," Bernanke said. "Those expectations are incorrect. We have an orderly liquidation authority. Even in the crisis, we -- uh, uh -- in the cases of AIG, for example, we wiped out the shareholders..."


Rep. Keith Ellison hammers Sean Hannity: You’re a shill for the Republican Party

Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota ripped into Fox News host Sean Hannity during a tense interview on Tuesday night.

Hannity began his segment by claiming President Barack Obama was to blame for looming across-the-budget cuts known as the sequester. The conservative Fox News host insisted the President was “fearmongering” about the consequences of the cuts and played an irreverent mash-up of Obama’s recent speeches.

“You’re the worst excuse for a journalist I’ve ever seen,” Ellison said after being introduced.

Hannity asked for Ellison to repeat himself, claiming he couldn’t hear him. Instead, Ellison continued to blast Hannity, saying his mash-up was deceptive “yellow journalism” and a “breach of every journalistic ethic I know of.” Ellison told Hannity he was a “shill for the Republican Party,” but Hannity repeatedly insisted he was a “registered conservative.”

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