Sunday, February 12, 2012

Romney boasts of 'severely conservative' record in CPAC speech

At CPAC, Jindal revives attack on Obama administration over oil spill recovery

J. Scott Applewhite / AP
Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana addresses activists from America's political right at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington on Saturday.

By NBC's Jamie Novogrod

WASHINGTON – Speaking before an audience of Republican activists Saturday, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal blasted the Obama administration over its response to the 2010 BP oil spill in the gulf, saying Obama officials “wasted precious time while that oil was coming in to our coast.”

The remarks came at the conclusion of his speech at CPAC, the annual gathering of Republican activists held here in Washington.

“They wasted precious time while that oil was coming in to our coast,” Jindal said. “They refused to listen to the people who lived along the coast that knew better than all the experts.”

Jindal – whose state was hit hardest by the spill – was a central figure in the recovery effort. His criticism, first expressed in his book, "Leadership and Crisis," represents a stinging rebuke of a Democratic administration with which he was partnered throughout the recovery effort.

“You’ve had a lot of speakers come up here and talk to you about the importance of this year’s election,” Jindal said, before adding that he wanted to offer “one more reason” why the election is important.

“What I saw and what I heard were people that were maybe very, very book smart, but had never run anything in the private sector,” Jindal continued.

“During our regular meetings and calls, the president would talk regularly about his “Nobel Prize-winning energy secretary.’ I’d begin to think that was part of his title,” Jindal said, refering to Energy Secretary Steven Chu. “I didn’t understand what that had to do with stopping the oil from coming to our coast.”

(Chu won a Nobel Prize in 1997, for physics; Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009.)

Jindal’s attack represents another expression of a complaint about an elite or out-of-touch White House that has marked many of the CPAC speeches throughout the three days here.

Much of Jindal’s speech prior to the remarks concerned privatizing and reforming public education in Louisiana, an effort which he said would involve expanding charter schools and scholarships, and cracking down on underperforming teachers.

“For the ineffective teachers that refuse to get better, maybe they should look into another profession. Maybe they don’t belong in the classroom anyway,” Jindal said.

Bin Laden told children 'live in peace in the West'

Do as I say, Not as I do!  Or is this total hypocrasy?  I only post and comment once in a while, especially when I can type.  If this is true...and I do not know if it is or not....maybe he was letting his children and grand children know that peace is the only way to live together without fighting.  Or maybe it has a deeper meaning, and there is where the hypocrasy comes in....

A screen grab of Osama bin Laden, taken from Qatar's al-Jazira TV in 1999. The slain Al-Qaeda chief urged his children to go live peacefully in the West and get a university education, his brother-in-law said in an interview

AFP – 9 hrs ago 

Slain Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden urged his children to go live peacefully in the West and get a university education, his brother-in-law said in an interview published Sunday.

Zakaria al-Sadah, the brother of bin Laden's Yemeni fifth wife Amal, told Britain's Sunday Times newspaper that the Saudi-born extremist believed his children "should not follow him down the road to jihad."

"He told his own children and grandchildren, 'Go to Europe and America and get a good education,'" al-Sadah told the Sunday Times.

Al-Sadah said bin Laden told them: "You have to study, live in peace and don't do what I am doing or what I have done."

Bin Laden was killed in a commando raid in May 2011 by US Navy SEALS at a house in the garrison town of Abbottabad, northwest Pakistan, where he had been living for several years.

Al-Sadah said that in November he had seen his sister for the first time since she was shot in the knee during the raid, and had since been allowed to have a number of meetings with her in the presence of guards.

He said the three wives and nine children who were in the compound -- some are bin Laden's children and others are his grandchildren -- have been held for months in a three-room flat in Islamabad.

They are guarded by Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) spy agency, he said.

The Sunday Times published what it said was the first photograph to show some of the young children from the compound: two sons and a daughter, and two grandsons and a granddaughter.

The children were still traumatised after seeing the raid in which bin Laden died, al-Sadah said.

"These children have seen their father killed and they need a caring environment, not a prison -- whatever you think of their father and what he has done," he said.

A Pakistani commission investigating the raid said in October that it had lifted travel restrictions on Bin Laden's family and al-Sadah flew to Islamabad in November to take Amal and her children home.

But he said Pakistani officials had refused to let him take them.

There was no immediate response to the claims from Pakistani officials..

US Marines posed with Nazi symbol in Afghanistan

Associated Press – Fri, Feb 10, 2012..... - This Sept. 2010 photo posted recently on the Titiusville, Fla.- based arms manufacturer Knight's Armament's Internet blog, shows members of Charlie Company, 1st Reconnaissance Battalion, out …more of Camp Pendleton, Calif. in Sangin, Helmand province, Afghanistan. The Marine Corps confirmed Thursday Feb. 8, 2012 that one of its scout sniper teams in Afghanistan posed for a photograph in front of a flag with a logo resembling that of the notorious Nazi SS. (AP Photo/

..SAN DIEGO (AP) — The Marine Corps on Thursday once again did damage control after a photograph surfaced of a sniper team in Afghanistan posing in front of a flag with a logo resembling that of the notorious Nazi SS — a special unit that murdered millions of Jews, gypsies and others.

The Corps said in a statement that using the symbol was not acceptable, but the Marines in the photograph taken in September 2010 will not be disciplined because investigators determined it was a naïve mistake.

The Marines believed the SS symbol was meant to represent sniper scouts and never intended to be associated with a racist organization, said Maj. Gabrielle Chapin, a spokeswoman at Camp Pendleton, where the Marines were based.

"I don't believe that the Marines involved would have ever used any type of symbol associated the Nazi Germany military criminal organization that committed mass atrocities in WWII," Chapin said. "It's not within who we are as Marines."

The Corps has used the incident as a training tool to talk to troops about what symbols are acceptable after it became aware of the photograph last November, Chapin said.

The image has since surfaced on an Internet blog, sparking widespread outrage and calls for a full investigation and punishment, including bringing those in the photograph and anyone who condoned it to court martial.

"This is a complete and total outrage," said Mikey Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, headquartered in Albuquerque, N.M.

His organization sent a letter to the head of the Marine Corps, Gen. James Amos, and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on Thursday, demanding punishment for those involved.

It was the second time this year the Marine Corps has had to do damage control for actions of its troops. It's also investigating a separate group of Marines recorded on video urinating on the dead bodies of Taliban fighters..

"First we have Marines peeing on dead bodies and now this," Weinstein said.

The Marines in the photograph are no longer with the unit. Chapin said she did not know if they are still in the Corps.

In the photo taken in the Afghanistan town of Sangin, the Marine Corps unit is posing with guns in front of an American flag and a large, dark blue flag with what appear to be the letters "SS" in the shape of white jagged lightning bolts.

Camp Pendleton spokesman, Master Gunnery Sgt. Mark Oliva, said he did not know where the flag came from but it was likely the property of one of the Marines in the photograph.

The photograph appeared on the blog for a military weapons company called Knight's Armament in Titusville, Fla. The company did not respond to emails or phone messages left by The Associated Press.

The SS, or Schutzstaffel, was the police and military force of the Nazi Party, which was distinct from the general army. Members pledged an oath of loyalty to Adolph Hitler.

SS units were held responsible for many war crimes and played an integral role in the extermination of millions of Jews along with gypsies and other people who were deemed undesirable. The SS was declared to be a criminal organization at the Nuremberg war crime trials.

Rabbi Marvin Hier, founder of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, headquartered in Los Angeles, said he does not buy the explanation that posing with the flag was an innocent mistake and insisted the American public has a right to know what happened.

"If you look at any book on the Nazi period, this is the dreaded symbol of the SS, and to have a Marine Corps unit adopt it and put it beside the American flag when 200,000 Americans died to free the world of that dreaded symbol is just beyond the pale," he said.

President Obama’s State of the Union: Ten Skirted Issues

Nomi Prins

January 25, 2012

I confess; I expected to be bored out of my mind listening to President Obama’s campaign – I mean, State of the Union – I mean campaign, speech. I kept hoping some truly earth shattering story would sneak in there beforehand, like say some discovery that Mitt Romney had been having an affair with Newt Gingrich’s ex-wife while he was creating jobs at Bain capital, and we could all focus on that instead.

It turned out that my pre-determination proved accurate. I wonder if the members of Congress felt the same sense of same déjà vu that I did, as they were bopping up and down and applauding.

Obama’s speech was a compilation of highlights from his past ones. One part optimism, two parts repetition equals one total uninspiring. Maybe it’s so boring, because it matters so little at this point. Taking away popularity polls, our national threshold for belief in hope or change has been trampled, not just because of Obama or Romney, but of the whole political apparatus that thrives on deflection of reality and posturing. We don’t have the same energy to expend listening to politicians, the endless spin that renders fact obsolete, responsibility absent, and true accomplishment, unnecessary.

We saw Optimistic Obama in his first address to Congress in 2009: “While our economy may be weakened and our confidence shaken; though we are living through difficult and uncertain times, tonight I want every American to know this: We will rebuild, we will recover, and the United States of America will emerge stronger than before.”

We got Presumptuous Obama in 2010: “As we stabilized the financial system, we also took steps to get our economy growing again, save as many jobs as possible, and help Americans who had become unemployed.”

We watched Philosophical Obama in 2011: “We are the first nation to be founded for the sake of an idea -– the idea that each of us deserves the chance to shape our own destiny. That’s why centuries of pioneers and immigrants have risked everything to come here… The future is ours to win.”

Now, we had Campaigning on Fairness Obama. He returned to the roots of his pre-Presidential words, having accomplished little to attain the goal that his words implied. Here are ten things that President Obama skirted:

1) The cost of healthcare insurance. Obama tried to play both sides, slapping a populace spin on an insurance industry gift. “That’s why our health care law relies on a reformed private market, not a Government program.” He claimed he won’t “go back” on things like health insurance companies being able to cancel policies. He didn’t say that insurance premiums have already risen 22% in the past two years. Republicans hate Obama’s ‘signature’ healthcare reform bill because it unconstitutionally forces people to purchase insurance. Democrats support the bill because Obama passed it. The reality is – by the time it takes effect in 2014, premium costs may have doubled. Frame it however you want, that means health insurance could cost twice as much when this bill takes effect as it did before it was passed. Meanwhile, there are more people without insurance (because they can’t afford it) even though insurance companies can’t cancel policies or deny insurance for pre-existing conditions. This bill merely offers insurance companies a wider pool of customers, with a few restrictions on how much they can pillage them.

2) Student Loan Defaults. Obama claimed he wants to cap interest rates on student loans – which would be great, but can only work in this particularly low rate environment. He urged colleges to keep costs down – again, something that’s worked out really well when he’s mentioned it before. This year, student loan debt surpassed credit card debt, breaching the $1 trillion mark, at an average of more than $25,000 per student (and up 47% over a decade ago, not all under Obama, but a bi-administration problem is still a problem). Not surprisingly, student loan defaults rates have risen alongside this debt increase. Nearly 9% of loans defaulted in 2010, of those that began repayment in 2009, vs. 7% that began in 2008.) Obama didn’t mention this growing problem.

3) Youth unemployment. Obama took credit for the creation of 3 million jobs (I’m not going to debate that here). Regardless, youth unemployment is at its highest rate since 1948. The unemployment rate for those under age 25 is 18.1%, (31% for blacks) havin risen sharply since 2008. Do the math. High student loan debt + diminishing job prospects = bad ending. Work-study programs have to be intense to really alter that.

4) Big banks. The largest firms continue to grow their asset bases and fee extrapolation strategies from their captive customer base (If you’re say, a JPM Chase customer, it costs you $5 to extract your own money from a Bank of America ATM – both banks get a cut). It was Obama that re-confirmed Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke for another fourteen years (and yes, a bi-partisan Congress agreed), and who still keeps Treasury Secretary, Tim Geithner around. Both men were gung-ho about the merger mania that dotted Wall Street in the fall of 2008 and making the ‘too-big-to-fail” banks bigger, as they now are.

5) Small banks. President Obama didn’t address the smaller bank closings occurring because the big banks got disproportionate subsides;, 389 smaller banks (with $297 billion in assets) failed from 2009 to 2011. Like during the early years of the Great Depression, this means less choice for individuals, less loans for local businesses, and consolidation of influence and market share for the big banks – which comprise Obama’s largest bundling base.

6) Borrowers. Despite a few tepid programs to help homeowners, the sheer number of foreclosures is higher today than it was in 2008. There were a record number of foreclosure filings: 2.9 million in 2010 and 2.7 million in 2011. These are predicted to rise in 2012 amidst default surges and more lender notices than in 2011.

Why? Because Obama’s program (that was supposed to help 5 million borrowers, and helped half a million) had to be approved by the banks. Banks don’t like citizen aid programs, even if they screwed them to begin with by fueling a $14 trillion toxic asset pyramid repackaging risky (for people), high interest-bearing (for them). Obama said, “The banks will repay a deficit of trust”? What?! When?! Where?!

7) Recent regulator incompetence. Regulators looked the other way, Obama said, pre-crisis. But he mentioned nothing about the regulators giving a pass since; the SEC bestows banks settlements for fraudulent mortgage asset products, without extracting any admission of wrongdoing. He missed saying anything about the lack of related DOJ criminal indictments. The top five banks agreed to pay $1.149 billion to the SEC to settle subprime-mortgage related fraud charges, with no admission of guilt or criminal indictments. (The SEC settlement of $285 million with Citigroup was rejected by Judge Rakoff in November, 2011 and is being re-negotiated.) And Obama wants to create a Financial Crimes Unit? What’s the SEC supposed to be doing? or the DOJ? or the FBI?

8 ) MF Global and customer money. On the same topic – the deficit of trust thing: Obama avoided any talk about his buddy, Jon Corzine or MF Global, the nation’s eight largest bankruptcy. He didn’t point out how diabolical it was to use and ‘lose’ customer funds that were supposed to have been kept separate from bad bets. He didn’t suggest having a solid separation between customer money and financial firm money – as in – don’t have it at the same firm. He claimed to ‘we will not bailout you out again” and yet, we still are.

9) Banks hoarding. Obama neglected to mention the $1.6 trillion that banks are stashing at the Fed in the form of excess (and interest-bearing) reserves, which do nothing for the Main Street economy. Meanwhile, small business loans are at a 12-year low, having shrunk continuously since 2008.

10) Obama conveyed that we dodged a bullet with getting the banking system under control. He didn’t note the rising risk in the banking system: the largest four US banks (JPM Chase, Citibank, Bank of America and Goldman Sachs) control nearly 95% of the US derivatives market, which has grown by 20% since just last year, to $235 trillion JPM Chase holds 11% of the world’s derivative exposure, Citibank, Bank of America, and Goldman comprise about 7% each. Goldman has 537 times as many (from 440 times last year) derivatives as assets and it’s still considered a bank holding company (as per Bernanke) that gets federal backing.

In all, the President’s speech was reminiscent of George Clooney’s in Ides of March. We’ve heard it all before, maybe with slightly different words: America lost 4 million jobs before I got here, and another 4 million before our policies went into effect, but in the last 12 months, we added 3 million job. We must reduce tax loopholes, and provide tax incentives to businesses that hire in America. We must reform taxes for the wealthy (though he signed an extension of Bush’s tax cuts.) We must train people for an apparent abundance of expert jobs. We need more clean energy initiatives. We created regulations (big sigh of relief he didn’t use the word ‘sweeping’) to avoid fraudulent financial practices. We will help homeowners. Wall Street must ‘make up a trust deficit.” Like Jamie Dimon cares.

In other words, Obama gave Wall Street a pass, while waxing populace. Don’t get me wrong. I expected nothing different. I will continue to expect nothing different, when he gets a second term, given the lame duo the GOP favors his key contenders to be.

Nomi Prins’ article first appeared on her blog.

Gingrich targets Republican establishment


WASHINGTON – Newt Gingrich relied on his standard campaign speech Friday afternoon to win over conservatives at CPAC 2012, hitting hard on both the Republican establishment and President Barack Obama.
“This is the year to re-set this country in a decisive, bold way. We need to teach the Republican establishment a lesson,” Gingrich told the crowd inside a Marriott Wardman Park Hotel ballroom.
The former House Speaker took the stage after his wife, Callista, made a rare public speaking appearance and introduced her husband.

“We believe our current path puts the future of our great nation in jeopardy,” Callista said about President Obama’s leadership in her roughly 3-minute remarks. “And we believe bold solutions and fearless leadership are necessary to rebuild the America we love.”
Gingrich, who uncharacteristically looked down at a handwritten outline while at the podium, picked up on this theme while he spoke, criticizing President Obama for his “war on religion.”
“We cannot trust him,” Gingrich said about the President, noting Obama will “wage war on the Catholic Church” if re-elected. “We know who he really is, and we should make sure the country knows who he really is.”
The Speaker was the final presidential candidate to speak at the annual conservative convention. Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney spoke earlier Friday.
But not everything was policy. There were even a couple lighthearted moments during both the Speaker and Callista’s speeches.
"Newt is an enthusiastic and committed golfer. It’s true. He gets in and out of more sand traps than anyone I have ever seen,” Callista joked with the crowd. “Newt golfs the way he does everything, with enthusiasm and determination. He’s willing to learn and he never gives up.”
But when the Speaker started his speech, he almost contradicted his wife.
“What she didn't tell you, by the way, is I'm a very bad golfer,” Gingrich said to laughter in the crowd. “She just wouldn't say it.”
The campaign spokesman told NBC News that Callista will be seen more frequently on the trail and will even start doing campaign events on her own soon.
151comments below
The more CPAC is broadcast the higher President Obama's approval ratings go. Glad he sent the Catholic Church back to their congregations where they belong. Glad he upheld a women's right to birth control since all the responsiblity for family planning is on our shoulders. Glad he will be reelected 2012. Pass the popcorn!
  • 32 votes
#1.3 - Fri Feb 10, 2012 8:07 PM EST

I assume Newt required that his lady friends who were not his wife use contraceptives when they visited him in his office or car? What about the other married GOP hypocrites who like to have a good time while serving the Koch Bros. and Grover Norquist in DC?
And Willard? Explain this please - from Markos M/DailyKos tweet:
RT@ThinkProgress: Romney in 2002: "My views are progressive." Romney in 2012: "I'm severely conservative."
  • 26 votes
#1.4 - Fri Feb 10, 2012 8:16 PM EST

Ana, no one ever holds the males accountable. All these strict rules we grow up with are aimed at women, not men. Men have always done whatever the hell they wanted. Yet it is they who attempt to make all the rules.
The Catholic Church was always a male dominated institution and always will be. Just like the GOP and media. So it was wonderful to see women speak up as they did. They surely did a great job this week showing zero tolerance for the way the Catholic Church continues to attempt to keep us in our place.
The men in the Democratic Party were awesome this week as well. It was comforting to see the support they showed to women. Especially President Obama.
The Democratic Party is awesome. Truly awesome.
  • 24 votes
#1.5 - Fri Feb 10, 2012 8:23 PM EST

CNN carried his speech ... basically he will fire all the Czars leaving but one, him. Other than that, moving the capital of Israel to Jerusalem would somehow make America respected again. Fire the Judges. Left out the moon. Came about as close as one can get to calling the President a traitor ... basically all the stuff the right likes to hear.
  • 25 votes
#1.6 - Fri Feb 10, 2012 8:37 PM EST

As long as the "party of responsibility" only holds women responsible for unwanted pregnancies and not the men who make the women pregnant, this woman is voting for Democrats. I cannot stand the blatant hypocrisy of men who refuse to use contraception but engage in sexual activities. They want to have their cake and eat it too. I tell my daughters, "You bear all of the burden. Be careful what you choose to do." Some men may step up and take responsibility, but it is the woman who must carry and bear the child. People against contraception are against women.
  • 25 votes
#1.7 - Fri Feb 10, 2012 9:56 PM EST

The conservative gadflies really poked a hornet's nest with all of the talk lately about restricting women's access to contraceptives and requiring government's custodial permission for any decisions about her body. Now Newt wants to try and turn the same topic around - but even women faithful to the Catholic church see this as a woman's rights issue.
  • 20 votes
#1.8 - Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:17 PM EST
Why are you claiming the Conservatives started this church thing, wasn't it someone from HHS that made the announcement? isn't she a democrat, or did she change parties?
Obama's administration started this whole catholic church/birth control snafu. Heck even his own loyal representatives running for re-election begged that he back off. Guess what He DID! He lost!
All your spinning it doesn't change the facts.
1. The end result is exactly what we started out with.
2. I guess there are liberal pundits that claim this was only to give some hard pressed democrat congressmen something to distance themselves from the President during this election cycle.
3. The alienation of another constituency.
These are the only things accomplished with this mess, all started by the director of HHS, a Democrat.
  • 3 votes
#1.9 - Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:34 PM EST

Katheryn ,
Yes, the GOP has decided to make their case against woman's right. they think the social conservative card is a winning ticket now.
They really think we will not notice if they wrap it up in religious talk, their hatred of the HCA, and big government rhetoric.
It took about 3 days for Komen foundation to backtrack about their PPH decision.
Women , regardless of party or religious denomination, are paying attention!
  • 20 votes
#1.10 - Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:42 PM EST

Egilman - I do think there are conservative gadflies (and I didn't say the majority - but those out to create soundbites) who are emboldened enough to talk about women as though women are not capable of thinking for themselves.
Rep.Wayne Christian said,"Well,of course, it's war on birth control and abortions and everything. That's what family planning is suppose to be about."
Joe Pitts of Pennsyvania - proposed bill to allow hospitals to refuse to provide an abortion when the procedure is necessary to save women's lives.
GA bill - to redefine victims of rape,stalking, and domestic violence as "accusers" instead of victims of abuse
Wendy Rogers - Women should not have an abortion even to prevent the unfortunate death of the mother.
Thomas White - Baptist Theological Seminary - declared use of birth control pills is murder of a life
Mitt Romney - "I hope to reclassify the most commonly used forms of contraceptives as abortions."
You are right about alienating a constituency -that constituency is the women of America
  • 21 votes
#1.11 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 12:34 AM EST

Oh yeah,Northstar - I didn't even mention the whole Karen Handel fiasco. I do believe they've " awakened a sleeping giant".
  • 16 votes
#1.12 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 12:44 AM EST

War on religion! What war on religion, Newt?
  • 11 votes
#1.13 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 1:06 AM EST
You might be right, I'm sure some ladies will feel that they are politically alienated there have been many that have felt that way for a long time by both the republicans and democrats.
I was thinking more along the lines that Catholics were and are being alienated from the democrat party. (a very large constituency for Obama in '08) And, they weren't before this garbage was brought up by democrats.

  • 3 votes
#1.14 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 1:24 AM EST

There they are!!!: All TV'd Up! Like Dracula, Frankenstein and The WolfMan; MittTaxPittance Rommel, THEGangrene and, last BUT NOT in the least, The WolfManVomitorium! YESSSSSS!!!!! First off is DRAC: aka MittTaxPittanceRommel, Who will START A WAR WITH Iran, A very Profitable War for his RepublicanCrimeCartelCorporateMasters AT THAT!! The Count was "nice enough" to expose his taxes!! Let Me Seeeee Now...Drac paid 13% on $42,000,000 income EEEZZZZ MONEY: $5,450,000 And! WE American Taxpayer Victims PAID The Count's REMAINING $7,800,000!!!! Thanks for SUCKING US Dry Drac!!! AND Aren't We "LittlePeople" Thrilled that The Count is nice enough to Let US have the Honor of Paying His Taxes!! He WILL ALLOW Even, the Poor, Whom HE HAS STATED He "DOES NOT CARE ABOUT" To coughUp his Tax Liability!; 'Long as they got A BloodyJob with deductions Drac can get his FANGS into their BloodMoney as small as it might be!
Then There is Frankenstein, err...THEGangrene who, with his department store mannequin "Other Half", will turn to Destructive Rage at the drop of a wrong word or moment!!! EGADZ, This SelfEntitled Creature of Pleasure will Start A War for his RepublicanCorporateMasters AnyWhere, AnyHow, AnyWay, EVEN On The Moon!, as long as there is profit and Franky gets a stipend from it!!! Let alone: ANYTHING TheGangrene Touches will Putrify and Rot like what is left of OUR AmericanBodyPolitic.. Watch Franky TRY to Come alive with "lightening" speed at the RepublicanNationalCrimeCartelConvention!!!
Now Comes The WolfMan Vomitorium... What Can be said!! Such a Goot'Lookin'Boy! Ooh Facime! What A Face!! how could he do Anything Unsavory!!! BUT When The CORPORATE SYMBOLS rise in his eyes TheVomitorium begins his hungry and Very Hairy Growling for American Taxpayer's Blood!!!!
Yes!! THERE is your victim Wolfy!! Go and Savage It WolfMan with BloodLust Fangs and All! Our American UniversalHealthCare System!! All of OUR Allys have it, EVEN the TowelHeads Have A NationalHealthCareSystem!, This Political Beast Savaged and ALSO Struck down OUR Bill for AnAmericanNationalHealthCareSystem!!! Then, when The Killing Is Over, Out Steps The 'A nica'Boy Vomitorium; Ooohh!! How CleanCut!! Yes And so are His savage sever wounds on OUR AmericanHealthCareBill!!!!Brother And Sister American Putting these guys In Power is Having Dracula Guard our BloodBanks!!! You Saw What the Count Did......
  • 5 votes
#1.15 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 1:49 AM EST

Egilman - yeah, I realized you and I were on were on two different tangents. Okay,here's my take on the proposal you were speaking of... This November will be a tough,close call and all candidates are looking for money and votes. Being a politician, (and they are all politicians,with maybe Ron tacking away from the general armada-I'm unsure what his course is) Obama sees the dramatic reaction of women to the whole Komen episode and his campaign advisors say, let's jump on this train. And there on his desk is the perfect vehicle to demonstrate his solidarity with women on the contraceptive/women's rights issues. If he can get women motivated - he's tapped into a huge group of potential voters (sadly women do not tend to stand up as a group-so we often tend to be overlooked). Whether he did it out of heartfelt beliefs or political gamemanship,it was not a good move politically,as we saw. But he doesn't have to do anything- the social conservatives are stirring up women all on their own by attacking women and birth control(even Evangelical and Catholic women use contraceptives). As women become aware that the access to contraceptives is seriously being contemplated for elimination -they will start to come together as a deciding factor in the November race. So yes - his move may have alienated Catholics,but a large portion of that constituency are women - and the other side have alienated them.
  • 10 votes
#1.17 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 11:13 AM EST
We will find it acceptable for you to bend the language a bit and go for "Quitta from Wasilla"
  • 2 votes
#1.18 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 1:30 PM EST

PTNY -- and Fox didn't even cover his speech at all.
Well why would FOX cover it, since FOX is part of the "establishment?"
Romney wants to be president so bad (he'll say anything), but wanting to be president so bad is not compelling to voters as a reason to vote for him. Same goes for Gingrich. He wants to teach the establishment a lesson, but this is not compelling to voters as a reason to vote for him.
Gingrich wears out code words (like "Czar") almost as fast as Bachmann did. Let's define "bold" or "bold contrast." This means someone SO extreme that even half of Republicans are appalled. The "Personhood" legislation that couldn't even pass in Mississippi is a good example, which would make all forms of contraceptives illegal as well as many other things like fertility procedures.
Ron Paul is just an outright anarchist -- who, BTW is quietly getting his supporters designated as delegates regardless of who is winning caucuses.
Egilman- Obama's administration started this whole catholic church/birth control snafu.
The Affordable Health Care Act in regard to labor laws and the horrible health insurance-via-employer-system we have in the US applies to ALL religions. I have asked why Romney defended Catholics instead of his own religion and institutions like the LDS Hospital, BYU, etc.
No, this was started by Gingrich and Santorum, both Catholic candidates, and Romney joining in so as not to be outdone (and at the same time not talk about his Mormon faith). Gingrich taking the moral high ground on anything is a joke, but we all know he just throws red meat -- How could he pass up an opportunity to attack "Obamacare?" Santorum is VERY sincere about "Personhood" big-brother-government theocracy. Just go back and read about his involvement in the Terri Schiavo fiasco.
There is NO attack on religion. This propaganda has been around forever, whether Bill O'Really on Christmas, or creationism and school prayer in public schools, etc. In fact, why the heck are priests reading legislation from the pulpit? These violations against non-profit status go back to the Equal Rights Amendment, and more recently Prop 8 in which churches like the Mormons were political activists. The IRS needs to crack down on this (the IRS, which wouldn't exist if Ron Paul had his way).
Katheryn Brandy -- Good points (and Pat).
The real attacks are against other religions, races, and of course women. The problems of maternity leave, child support and affordable child care, and equality in coverage (e.g., Viagra) and a uterus as a pre-existing condition have been around a long time. Contraceptives reduce health care costs and abortions. This is the 21st century--Enough!
  • 11 votes
#1.19 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:17 PM EST

Correction to post #1.19 above, the "Personhood" legislation -- that life begins at conception, i.e., defined as a fertilized egg -- would make most forms of contraceptives illegal. And call into question miscarriages, the mother's life at risk, obviously rape even in cases of incest (and verified deformity) as no excuse for abortion... Condoms would still be okay, but that would put responsibility on men - Ha!
When will this argument stop, just friggin stop? Roe v Wade with the Hyde Amendment has served us just fine thank you. We don't need to keep going backward and having the same old, idiotic arguments in this country.
JOBS, Boehner/McConnell and Teapublicans in congress -- Where are the jobs?!
  • 10 votes
#1.20 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:40 PM EST
We will find it acceptable for you to bend the language a bit and go for "Quitta from Wasilla"
Most excellent idea! I will have to remember that in the future!
Thanks! ☺
  • 4 votes
#1.21 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 3:41 PM EST
newt is his own worst enemy; to far right for the mainstream republican party, to far out for a rational person and to long ago in the political mainstream, only Winston Churchill made a come back of that long out, the political world will not see the likes of his greatness again.
  • 2 votes
#1.22 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 9:13 PM EST
Saxon - Winston takes umbrage with his name being in such close proximity to Newt's!
  • 2 votes
#1.23 - Sat Feb 11, 2012 9:30 PM EST

Obama's budget offers short-term help for economy


Kevin Lamarque / Reuters
White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew and President Obama said the new budget would put the country on track to achieve $4 trillion in deficit reductions over the next 10 years.
The president will send Congress a budget that will provide short-term help to a struggling economy while offering a long-term plan to deal with soaring deficits, the White House said Sunday. Republicans attacked the spending blueprint as offering more of the same failed solutions for the economy.
The 2013 budget being released Monday will propose public works spending while seeking tax increases on the wealthy and corporations to claim progress on the federal deficit in his upcoming budget. The spending plan projects a deficit for this year of $1.3 trillion, the fourth straight year of $1 trillion-plus deficits, and $901 billion next year.
Jacob Lew, the president's chief of staff, said the new budget would put the country on track to achieve $4 trillion in deficit reductions over the next 10 years, achieved by raising taxes on the wealthy and trimming government spending. Lew said the president's budget would cut spending by $2.50 for every $1 it raises in new taxes.
"In the long run, we need to get the deficit under control in a way that builds the economy," Lew said during appearances on the Sunday talk shows. "We do it in a way that's consistent with American values so that everyone pays a fair share."
The release of Obama's spending plan for the budget year that begins Oct. 1 marks the official start to an election-year budget battle over taxes and spending as the nation's debt tops $15 trillion.
Republicans on Sunday criticized the document for its proposals to increase spending in such areas as infrastructure and for its tax increases.
House Republicans will put forward a sharp alternative to Obama's plan that will provide deficit reduction through an overhaul of Medicare and other programs and without tax increases.
"We're taking responsibility for the drivers of our debt," said the chairman of the House Budget Committee, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis. "So when the dust settles and people see actually what we're doing, how we're promoting bipartisan solutions."
The president's plan is laden with stimulus-style initiatives, like sharp increases for highway construction, school modernization, and a new tax credit for businesses that add jobs. But it avoids sacrifice, with only minimal curbs on the unsustainable growth of Medicare even as it slaps a 10-year, $61 billion "financial crisis responsibility fee" on big banks to recoup the 2008 Wall Street bailout.
The budget, administration officials say, borrows heavily from Obama's September submission to a congressional deficit "supercommittee" assigned to come up with at least $1.2 trillion in deficit savings as part of last summer's budget-and-debt pact that avoided a first-ever U.S. default on its obligations. The panel deadlocked and left Washington to grapple with bruising across-the-board spending cuts that kick in next January.
Obama's plan predicts deficit savings of more than $4 trillion over a decade, mixing $1 trillion already banked through last summer's clampdown on agency operating budgets with $1.5 trillion in higher tax revenues reaped from an overhaul of the tax code. It also claims savings from reduced war costs and takes just a nip at federal health care programs even as it promises $476 billion for road and other surface transportation programs over six years, a significant increase.
It's already received a chilly reception from Republicans who say Obama isn't doing enough to tame the deficit or curb the rapid growth of benefit programs like Medicare.
The budget will also call for a "Buffett Rule" named after billionaire Warren Buffett that would guarantee that households making more than $1 million a year pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes.
Lew appeared on ABC's 'This Week," CNN's "State of the Union," "Fox News Sunday," NBC's "Meet the Press" and CBS' "Face the Nation." Ryan was on ABC.

201comments below

Analysis: Obama pitches middle while GOP eyes base


The dustup over contraception underscored President Barack Obama's political edge in working to attract independent voters without alienating his Democratic base. His Republican rivals are forced to keep emphasizing their conservative credentials to attract the right-leaning activists who dominate the nominating contests.
It's a dynamic that usually plays out when a president seeks re-election without a primary challenger, and the other party fights to determine its nominee.
Obama already is in general-election mode, with the luxury of courting voters who don't ascribe to a political party. The eventual Republican nominee is moving to the right and probably will have to edge back toward the center in the fall. The farther he must go to the fringe to win the nod, however, the tougher his task.
Recommended: Former Bachmann spokeswoman heads to Santorum campaign 
The difference was clear Friday, at events two miles apart in Washington.
At the White House, Obama made a carefully calibrated concession to Catholics angered by his decision to require religious-affiliated employers, including Catholic hospitals and colleges, to cover birth control in their health insurance plans. The president tweaked the rule Friday. He said insurance companies would provide contraceptive benefits directly to employees, technically leaving employers out of the transaction.
White House and Obama campaign officials were relieved by the initial reaction.
Groups such as Planned Parenthood, which privately had urged no changes, praised the move. More important, so did the influential Catholic Health Association of the United States, whose criticism of the original rule spelled trouble for Obama's team.
At the same time across town, three of the four GOP presidential candidates appeared separately at the Conservative Political Action Conference, a major annual gathering of activists on the political right. Each tried to out-do the other in proclaiming conservative fealty.
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, former House speaker Newt Gingrich and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum criticized Obama's contraception policy. They painted themselves as conservative crusaders on a range of issues.
Romney drew snickers by saying he was a "severely conservative governor." Gingrich said the Obama administration "is waging war on religion."
Santorum, who built much of his national profile by fighting legalized abortion, said Obama is "telling the Catholic Church that they are forced to pay for things that are against their basic tenets and teachings."
"It's not about contraception," he said. "It's about economic liberty. It's about freedom of speech. It's about freedom of religion."
Democrats hope independent voters will see it differently. Americans, including Catholics, overwhelmingly embrace birth control. Obama's goal was to reframe his policy as a matter of equal access to preventive health care, not a quarrel about religious or economic rights.
"I think the president ended up looking like the responsible person in the room," said Lanae Erickson of the Democratic-leaning group Third Way, which has studied independent voting trends. "The Republican primary candidates went way out on a limb and will alienate themselves with independent voters," she said.
The CPAC speeches were standard fare for such conservative gatherings, and they may not matter much in November. But Democrats will try to use the remarks to portray the eventual GOP nominee as out of touch with middle America.
For now, they're focusing mainly on Romney, who won Saturday's straw poll at CPAC and the Maine GOP caucuses.
"Mitt Romney and the rest may think that catering to the tea party set and Rush Limbaugh is the only way to win the nomination, but the eventual nominee is going to pay a huge price for that approach with swing voters in the fall," said Brad Woodhouse, spokesman for the Democratic National Committee."
Campaign strategists endlessly debate the right balance between pursuing independents versus firing up the party base. Karl Rove broke new ground in 2004 by placing considerably more emphasis on the Republican base, which propelled President George W. Bush to a second term.
Obama's 2008 victory, however, was built on the more traditional formula of focusing extensively on independent voters while doing as much as possible to keep his party's liberal activists energized. Since then, Obama has struggled to overcome their disappointment.
The shift on the Catholic-contraception issue appears modest enough to cause few ripples. But Obama infuriated some liberal groups by dropping plans to tighten ozone restrictions and to have a government-run health insurance provider.
Erickson said Obama can ill afford to appease liberals with left-leaning moves that would alienate independents. As public disenchantment with Congress has soared in the past few years, she said, the ranks of independents have swelled at the Democratic and Republican parties' expense.
"This year is going to have the highest independent turnout in modern political history," Erickson said.
The GOP primary contest shows no sign of wrapping up soon.
The longer it goes on, the more time Obama has to make overtures to independents who, as Erickson put it, "will be the kingmakers in this election."

This article reinforces the obvious truth that Obama is a centrist with reasonable positions and the republican party are the ones who are being extreme. Believing the opposite to be true is what demonstrates, better than anything else, just how wrong and out of touch, the Obama haters are. NOTHING Obama has ever done is the least bit extreme. The whole idea that Obama is some sort of extreme left-wing, radical "socialist" is nothing but ludicrous nonsense as anyone with the slightest understanding of American politics can easily see.
  • 29 votes
Reply#1 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:36 AM EST

The problem is that the Right has made itself a bubble; an echo chamber. They no longer have to be exposed to reality to get their political news, and we've seen the unfortunate result.
  • 17 votes
#1.1 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:39 AM EST

Socialist is this decades new buzz-word. Seriously, they use it as some kind of white wash to counter any argument or debate thrown at them. The really sad thing is people who use 'progressive' like it's a 4-letter word. Since when did Progress become terrible? According to those people then, this Congress must be the best this country has ever seen, because it sure isn't progressing at all.
This latest flub with the contraceptives thing couldn't have been planned better though, the majority of women, catholic women, independents and leftists all agree with the policy, and the GoP and Catholic Church are still stuck on telling women what to do with their own bodies.
  • 17 votes
#1.2 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:45 AM EST

"Obama / 2012 Guaranteed" !!!!!!!!
  • 17 votes
#1.3 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:48 AM EST

Hey GOP Base and fellow seniors:
Google: Romney's and Santorum's plans to cut Social Security and Medicare.
Think about that when you cast your vote!
  • 14 votes
#1.4 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 12:12 PM EST
donald duck has more sense than this jerk..
and would easily beat him!
  • 1 vote
#1.5 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 12:13 PM EST

Patriotic and Ron
No election is easy and very few are slam dunks. If people think that they will stay away from the polls. Rather than think it's going to be easy, go work for your candidate. I would hate to see the Repbulicans win because people thought it was a slam dunk and didn't bother.
The Republicans are soooo far right they frighten me.
  • 13 votes
#1.6 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 12:38 PM EST

B Murphy -- Good analysis. The president/Dems are doing a much better job of appealing to swing voters. And it isn't pandering. They have been proving they represent middle America with a lot of hard work and often heavy lifts in the face of GOP/TP obstructionism -- Income inequality, fair taxation, balanced approach to deficits, job creation and investment in a future for ALL.
But as we know, the Right worships at the alter of Fear & Hate -- though irrational and not fact-based, these are the strongest emotions. So liberals MUST get out the vote along with moderates to reelect President Obama, but more importantly to give the president a congress that will work with him.
In regard to demonizing words like "liberal" or "progressive" what about "secular?" Heck, even "European-style" anything including "socialism?" Our government is supposed to be secular, and it's really pitiful when conservatives call liberals "fascists" because fascism is right-wing.
We are bordering on "plutocracy" and Santorum, et al, would like our country to be a "theocracy." These things are real and something to seriously worry about.
  • 8 votes
#1.7 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:47 PM EST

"Hey dsb, the GOP teatards frighten all of us, not just you"
  • 5 votes
#1.8 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:50 PM EST
Im buying stock in Apotex. The Paxil usage will increase on Nov 7th, it will be called the new day after drug.
  • 1 vote
#1.9 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 2:30 PM EST
Obama is going to go down in flames this fall. Even the notion of telling a church to purchase contraceptives while fining them for not carrying health care is a violation of their faith. Just remember dems, this survives and maybe your party will have you people sterilized in a few years. That would be fitting. Also, the housing crisis is alive and well. No rational person is going to vote for obama after getting soaked by 30-50% on their house and bailing out the banks letting the middle class suffer. As far as his handling of the economy, blowing 5 trillion on his buddies don't cut it - a lot of people lost their jobs and they are not coming back. I am tea party and I won't compromise to a facist dictatorship!
    #1.10 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 3:44 PM EST
    jolly joker -- What a joke, you troll.
    Laws of the Land against animal sacrifice, or heck, polygamy are examples of balancing rights -- You can't commit murder because you claim it to be your religious belief. Everyone knows the Catholic priests (preaching from the pulpit) about the Laws of the Land, in which birth control is legal and a right of all citizens, is a nontroversy blown out of proportion by the likes of Gingrich.
    This is merely labor law in regard to health insurance (and only applicable to companies of more than 50 employees with churchs exempt) and per long-standing precedent. Thanks to Teapublican love for the current bizarre and broken health care system in which employers are responsible for insurance -- when the rest of the world has cut out the greedy middlemen insurance companies and have government-administered health care thereby avoiding such controversy (contrived as it may be). All this does is confirm the need for a single-payer "Medicare for all" health care system.

    1. An authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization.
    2. (in general use) Extreme right-wing, authoritarian, or intolerant views or practice.
    Obviously you don't read other posts, and just swoop and poop. And obviously you subscribe to right-wing propaganda and conspiracy theory ignorance, but when posters lie in here, we call them on it.

    • 1 vote
    #1.11 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 4:20 PM EST
    This president has already shown his colors. He will change his position depending on the mood of the electorate at that time. He will lie and pander to get your support, and then he will throw you under the bus.
    Oust obama bin biden in November!
    • 4 votes
    Reply#2 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:45 AM EST favor of who? Romney? Paul? Gingrich? You're kidding right? Those are hardly better replacements.
    • 18 votes
    #2.1 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:46 AM EST

    And to days front-runner is "OBAMA"
    • 8 votes
    #2.2 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 11:53 AM EST

    He doesn't change his colors, he tries to find room in the middle to get things through. There is nothing wrong with that at all, this country needs more of it.
    • 14 votes
    #2.3 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 12:03 PM EST

    "Oust obama bin biden in November!"
    Seriously dude? You're still trying to paint the president as a muslim terrorist? How sad and pathetic. I pity you, but not too much. I try not to waste too much of my energy on the mentally retarded like yourself.
    See my post below, it will show you exactly how Obama's reelection is inevitable. Though, republicans and teabaggers are the fingers in the ears, singing "La la la la la" when it comes to being presented with the truth type of idiots.
    • 11 votes
    #2.4 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 12:16 PM EST

    The president's reelection won't be difficult to achieve. It's a simple matter of math. If one can count as high as 270, the president will have a second term. Simply put, any GOP nominee would have to win all 5 of the following states to get 270 electoral votes; VA, PA, NC, OH & FL. The president won all 5 in 2008, and in November, he'll only have to win one of any of them to get to 270 electoral votes. Republicans pretty much handed him Ohio by pissing off their majority with their failed attempt to take all power away from labor unions in a state that loves their unions. Basically, thanks to republican fools, Obama wins. The vice president will likely be able to deliver Pennsylvania again, they love him there. Virginia is still in play, but will likely go to the GOP. Florida and North Carolina will likely be tossups again.
    Any way you do the math, it's nearly impossible for the GOP nominee, whoever he may be (Romney), to reach 270 electoral votes.
    I look forward to the republicans on this thread calling me all kinds of names,I find their hate amusing (yet still very very sad and pathetic), but I'd be willing to bet that none can refute the math.
    • 14 votes
    #6 - Sun Feb 12, 2012 12:05 PM EST