Posted: April 7, 2013 Filed under: abortion rights, Barack Obama, Congress, crops, Cuba, Discrimination against women, Environment, Environmental Protection, Farming, Federal Budget, Foreign Affairs, History, legislation, Monsanto, morning reads, Paycheck Fairness Act, PLUB Pro-Life-Until-Birth, racism, Reproductive Rights, Republican politics, right wing hate grouups, the GOP, Women's Healthcare, Women's Rights | Tags: Afro-Cubans, Assholes, CNN, cuba, ERA, Fidel Castro, George A Strock, Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, Roberto Zurbano, Soladad O'Brien
We have come to the end of spring break, it is amazing to me how fast time flies by…I have some interesting links for you, some of them I have saved for a little while, you may just want to come back to them during the day.
By the way, later tonight is the season premiere of Mad Men, I don’t know about you…but I sure am looking forward to it.
Y’all know that CNN made the huge mistake of sacking Soledad O’Brien last month. The Guardian had an article about her last appearance on the network:
CNN’s Soledad O’Brien signs off with call for ‘tough conversations’
CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien at belated 60th birthday celebrations for Chaka Khan. Photograph: Startraks Photo / Rex Features
CNN host Soledad O’Brien signed off on Friday with a call for the network not to back away from “tough and honest conversations”.
O’Brien, who has built a reputation for hard-hitting interviews, said on the last edition of her morning show, Starting Point, that “facts matter”.
The new CNN boss, Jeff Zucker, cancelled O’Brien’s show, which has performed poorly in the ratings, and announced on Thursday that it will be replaced by a new show hosted by Chris Cuomo and Kate Bolduan.
In a short closing monologue on Friday, O’Brien said CNN had given her the chance to cover some of the biggest stories of our time and said she would continue to focus on “good journalism”.
She said: “My tenure at the helm of this show ends today, and I’m not going to be covering daily news at CNN after today. Over the last decade at CNN I’ve had a really great chance to cover some of the biggest stories, I think it’s fair to say, of our time.”
O’Brien recalled when she and a CNN team received a standing ovation at the airport in New Orleans after covering hurricane Katrina.
“So I think if I’ve learned anything over the past year it’s that facts matter,” she continued. “And we shouldn’t be afraid to have tough and honest conversations and maybe even argue a little bit when there’s a lot at stake, and yes, Governor Sununu, I am talking to you.”
You remember that interview don’t you? Soladad kicked Sununu’s ass! O’Brien told the Guardian that CNN did not provide a lot of support for her show Starting Point. They did not get a lot of promotion and were not fully staffed. No wonder, with CNN going down the shit bucket of news. In fact, you need to see this bit Jon Stewart did this past week:
Jon Stewart Tears Apart CNN: Neither Left Nor Right, But On A ‘Steady Spiral Downward’
Stewart then turned to CNN, a network that is neither leaning left nor right, but is instead on a “steady spiral downward.” He took on the new approach of CNN executive Jeff Zucker to the news, mockingly saying things like “I love brunch! Who doesn’t love brunch? That’s news!”
Stewart brought up some graphic faux pas of CNN, including (for some reason) a CNN personality standing in the middle of a virtual field of goats. And most egregiously of all, CNN showed off a live recreation of the Jodi Arias crime scene, complete with dead boyfriend in a pool of blood on the floor.
Of course, new changes don’t come without new show experiments, and following the success of The Five and The Cycle, CNN is testing out a new primetime show called (Get To) The Point. Stewart figured CNN must have “mistook what people are constantly yelling” at the screen for a show pitch. He showed clips of the show’s hosts talking about important subjects like lizard people and vegetarians who eat bacon.
What Stewart loved the most about the show was that when promos for this new program appear on the screen during other CNN shows, it looks like a subtle jab at whoever’s talking to get to the damn point already.
Go watch the video clips…my gawd, what shit CNN is pulling out their ass now a days!
Now, this next article is something I also saved from a while back, funny how it has caused quite a controversy of late….anyway, you know that my father’s family came from Cuba back in the late 1800′s. Here is a photograph of the town Marti City, in Ocala, Florida where my great-great grandfather had one of his cigar factories. In 1890s, cigar industry flourished, died in Ocala
A horse-drawn trolley, shown in Marti City, ran south from Ocala’s railroad station along North Magnolia to Broadway, turned west and followed Broadway to haul passengers and freight to the cigar factories at Marti City.
Well, I usually share links about Cuba with you all, and this article was one I was looking forward to sharing. For Blacks in Cuba, the Revolution Hasn’t Begun by Roberto Zurbano
Alex Webb/Magnum Photos
“Havana, 2013” More Photos »
CHANGE is the latest news to come out of Cuba, though for Afro-Cubans like myself, this is more dream than reality. Over the last decade, scores of ridiculous prohibitions for Cubans living on the island have been eliminated, among them sleeping at a hotel, buying a cellphone, selling a house or car and traveling abroad. These gestures have been celebrated as signs of openness and reform, though they are really nothing more than efforts to make life more normal. And the reality is that in Cuba, your experience of these changes depends on your skin color.
Please, before you do anything else go and read that editorial…because it was written by a man who was fired for saying what he felt was true. Check it out: Writer of Times Op-Ed on Racism in Cuba Loses Job
The editor of a publishing house in Cuba who wrote a critical article in The New York Times opinion section about persistent racial inequality on the island, something revolutionaries proudly say has lessened, has been removed from his post, associates said on Friday.
The author, Roberto Zurbano, in an article published March 23, described a long history of racial discrimination against blacks on the island and said “racial exclusion continued after Cuba became independent in 1902, and a half century of revolution since 1959 has been unable to overcome it.”
On Friday, The Havana Times blog reported that Mr. Zurbano had told a gathering of Afro-Cuban advocates that he had been dismissed from his post at the publishing house of the Casa de las Americas cultural center, leaving the implication that the dismissal was connected to the article. Other associates said Mr. Zurbano told them he had been removed but would continue working there.
There is a lot more to it than there appears to be…
Reached by telephone in Havana, Mr. Zurbano would not comment on his employment. “What is The New York Times going to do about it?” he asked. He angrily condemned the editors of the opinion section for a change in the headline that he felt had distorted his theme.
The article’s headline, which was translated from Spanish, was “For Blacks in Cuba, the Revolution Hasn’t Begun,” but Mr. Zurbano said that in his version it had been “Not Yet Finished.”
“They changed the headline without consulting me,” he said. “It was a huge failure of ethics and of professionalism.”
Eileen Murphy, a spokeswoman for The Times, said the editor stood by the article’s preparation.
“We worked very hard to ensure that the wording in the piece was translated properly and accurately reflected the writer’s point of view,” she said in a statement. “There were numerous versions of the piece sent back and forth, and in the end, Mr. Zurbano and our contact for him (who speaks fluent English) signed off on the final version.”
“We knew,” she added, “that Mr. Zurbano was in a sensitive situation, and we are saddened if he has indeed been fired or otherwise faced persecution, but we stand by our translation and editing, which was entirely along normal channels.”
Believe me, there is an underlying racism within the Cuban community and to say there isn’t is bullshit. Yes, it is taboo to speak of it too. However, there is a history in a little town in Florida of Cuban whites and blacks coming together to fight for labor rights.
Restaurant in Havana, note the Albinos allowed sign.
My great-great grandfather Nicholas Santana owned a cigar factory and was partners with a black-Cuban named Sorondo who had connections with Jose Marti.
Sanborn Fire Insurance Map of 1895, Ocala FL, Marti City. My great-great grandfather’s cigar factory, Santana, Sorondo & CO., is located on the bottom left corner.
In Ybor City, Florida…you could find a small pocket of intelligence within the Southern land of Jim Crow, for racism was not prevalent in that little area of Italian, Spanish, Black, White immigrants who mostly worked for the many cigar factories. There were many Afro-Cubans, both women and men, involved in the cigar factory labor strikes in Tampa, Florida, many years ago…they were fighting with their white brothers and sisters for workers rights.
Revolution is part of the Cuban culture, and I do believe that it is fair to say that for the Black-Cuban, the revolution is not finished. It just barely started and has been put on hold, it needs to get back in gear. Racism is alive in Cuba, there is no doubt about that. And the fact that Zurbano was fired says a lot about how things are handled in Cuba.
Speaking of Cuba, there was this bit of celebrity down there: Useful Idiots: Beyoncé And Jay-Z Ignore Cuba’s Racism With Havana Trip
This week, superstars Beyoncé and Jay-Z celebrated their 5th wedding anniversary with a trip to Cuba or, as the informed refer to it, “the island prison.”
While dining, partying, and enjoying the best Havana has to offer, Beyoncé and Jay-Z not only legitimize and support the repressive regime, with both their presence and their cash, but turn a blind eye, cruelly, to the perils and languishing of the Cuban people.
Both stars are proud African-Americans — yet, curiously, chose to vacation in a country notorious for relegating its black population to second-class status, or worse.
It is no surprise that many of Cuba’s top dissidents are Afro-Cubans. Did Sasha Fierce and Jigga Man find time to meet with these brave souls, or with their families? Did they mention them? Did they even think of them?
Of course not! This was not a trip to discover truth…or to learn about history or even music. Take a look at the link for a list of Afro-Cubans advocates who have either been imprisoned or killed for speaking out against the racism.
But why stop Cuba’s racism, and its atrocious human rights record, from getting in the way of a good time? After all, Jay-Z is the ‘artist’ who famously raps: “Welcome to Havana, smoking cubanos with Castro in cabanas!”
All Jay and “B,” useful idiots extraordinaire, seem to hear when visiting Cuba is: “Extra sugar on that mojito, señor?” Never mind the life-long plight of the Afro-Cuban waiter serving that drink, who casts a longing, hopeful look in their direction, only to be met with an aloof, distant smile from the two callous multi-millionaires who, while sharing his skin color, could not care less about his plight.
The photo-journalism report that went with the Zurbano op/ed can be seen here: The Ambiguous Island – Slide Show – NYTimes.com Again, I urge you to go take a look at those images.
Now, one more link out of that little Island nation down south…this made me laugh a little, Fidel Castro to North Korea: Chill
Cuba’s seemingly immortal former leader Fidel Castro, who knows a thing or two about threats of nuclear destruction, is asking both Kim Jong-un and Barack Obama to think before they do anything stupid. “The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea was always friendly with Cuba, as Cuba always has been and will continue to be with her,” Castro wrote in his first state media op-ed in almost nine months, but “this is one of the gravest risks of nuclear war since the October Crisis in 1962 involving Cuba, 50 years ago.”
“Now that it has demonstrated its technical and scientific advances, we remind it of its duties to other countries who have been great friends and that it would not be just to forget that such a war would affect in a special way more than 70 percent of the world’s population,” wrote Castro, who’s apparently gone soft in his old age.
While the situation in the Koreas is “incredible and absurd,” he added, he warned Obama that if bombing breaks out, he “would be buried by a flood of images that would present him as the most sinister figure in U.S. history. The duty to avoid [war)]also belongs to him and the people of the United States.”
It seems like some sort of SNL skit, doesn’t it? Castro calling North Korea “incredible and absurd.”
Okay, you want real absurd? In Tennessee some asshole is putting forward a law that makes welfare payments dependent upon the student’s grades. Tennessee Gets Closer to Passing Bill That Ties Welfare to School Grades
A Tennessee bill that would cut welfare benefits of parents with children performing poorly in school cleared committees of both the House and Senate last week.
The measure takes “a carrot and stick approach,” one of the sponsors of the bill, Rep. Vance Dennis, R-Savannah, told the Knoxville News and Sentinel.
Seth Freed Wessler summarized the bill last month on Colorlines.com:
A Tennessee lawmaker introduced legislation last week to stop welfare payments to parents if their kids get bad grades in school. The sponsor, State Senator Stacy Campfield said, “One of the top tickets to break the chain of poverty is education.” But he added, “We have done little to hold [parents] accountable for their child’s performance.”
The bill would chop nearly a third of family’s Temporary Aid for Needy Families benefits, already a pittance, if their child fails to pass state competency tests or get’s held back. How exactly the threat to make poor people poorer will improve educational outcomes isn’t at all clear.
The bill is sponsored by Sen. Stacey Campfield, R-Knoxville, and Rep. Vance Dennis, R-Savannah. It calls for a 30 percent reduction in Temporary Assistance for Needy Families benefits to parents whose children are not making satisfactory progress in school, the Knoxville News and Sentinel reported.
You know what? My kids are not from a “broken” home, and both their parents and grandparents are college graduates…and they struggle in school. They do not get A’s and B’s…so this would be a disaster in terms of assistance if we were a “needy” family. I mention my kids performance at school because even with positive backgrounds and no worries about food and a place to sleep, a kid can be a disappointment when it comes to their grades. This is a horrible law…damn these GOP assholes.
In another education link: Can Computers Teach Students to Write Better?
Bet you can guess the answer to that.
Alright, moving on…Juan Cole had an excellent post this past week: Congress Obsessed with American Muslims, Neglects real threat of White Supremacists | Informed Comment
The shooting of Kaufman, Texas district attorney Mike McLelland and his wife Cynthia remains a mystery. But investigators are increasingly looking into a cell of extremist white terrorists as the suspects. Two months ago, a county assistant district attorney, Mark Hasse, was murdered not far from his office at the court. (I used the term extremist white terrorists because that is what they are, but usually the American press only describes foreigners and Muslims as terrorists, while calling whites “extremists.”)
Likewise, a gang of white terrorists is suspected in the recent slaying of the head of Colorado’s prison system.
Rep. Peter King (R-NY) and other Islamophobes in Congress, seeking to look good to campaign donors who hate Muslims, has conducted several hearings on the alleged increased radicalization of American Muslims. Sociologists don’t find evidence of such a thing; American Muslims on the whole are relatively well-integrated into US society and are disproportionately well off and pillars of the society. The hearings are a form of McCarthyism.
No one was killed or injured in the US in 2012 by terrorists of Muslim heritage, and only 14 Americans of Muslim heritage were even indicted for violent plots. Only one act of violence was traced to such a group, which produced no casualties.
Rep. Peter King is a big supporter of the old 1980s Irish Republican Army, which killed two Americans in a bombing at Harrod’s department store in London. The man’s feet won’t touch the ground when he walks because of the rivers of hypocrisy exuding from between his toes.
Read the rest at the link.
Like I said at the beginning of this morning’s reads, lots of links for you today. More after the jump.
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: October 21, 2012 Filed under: 2012 elections, 2012 presidential campaign, abortion rights, Accommodation and Compromise, Affordable Care Act (ACA), Barack Obama, birth control, child sexual abuse, Foreign Affairs, Iran, Main Stream Media, Mitt Romney, morning reads, nature, Paycheck Fairness Act, Planned Parenthood, Religious Conscience, Reproductive Rights, Republican politics, the GOP, War on Women, Women's Healthcare, Women's Rights | Tags: Boy Scouts of America, Chicago Bears, Gloria Allred, Lincoln Assassination, Miami Archdiocese, perversion files, ReConstitution 2012, Rupert Murdoch
I am using a new blog editor for this post, so hopefully it formats properly…
Ooooo, do I have some interesting links for you this morning. And since there are so many, let’s start and finish with animal stories.
First we turn to the Bears…and the title of today”s post is a hint:
Owners of Chicago Bears Gin Up Fear About Access to Contraception as a Religious Freedom Issue
On Sunday, the owners of the Chicago Bears hosted a meeting at the team’s practice facility where religious leaders and politicians (bad combo) pounced all over the “Obamacare” requirement that contraception be covered by employer insurance plans.
According to the Chicago Tribune, speakers lamented the “eroding freedom to speak in the language of faith in the public square.” How denying women contraception the same women pay for through their own insurance premiums equals “freedom of speech” is anyone’s guess.
“Some speakers cited evidence of religious persecution in abortion laws, gay marriage, and efforts to characterize opponents of the contraception mandate as anti-women.”
So let me get this straight: If a woman makes the extraordinarily personal decision to end a pregnancy, everyone who disagrees with that decision is being religiously persecuted? How do my reproductive decisions affect your religious faith or freedom in the slightest?
Trick question! They don’t.
Apparently, the team’s senior director of special projects serenaded the crowd with a “religious liberty-themed rendition of ‘Bear Down, Chicago Bears,’” which sounds absolutely hideous and should qualify as “religious persecution” itself, if we’re going by the Bears’ event speakers’ standards.
Sounds like torture to me.
I don’t understand it…and I know, you know, that it pisses me off, so what else can I say.
I have a few more women’s issue links for you:
This first one is no surprise, Abortion may be legal, but very difficult in many states; in past 2 years, 41 set new limits – The Washington Post
We have been talking about the measures the GOP is taking to stick it to women. War on Women? You bet your ass there is a war on women!
From the Topeka Capital Journal: GOP: Women’s Rights and Equal Pay are “Small Things”
This is another review of articles and memes but it is good to see it getting some attention in these newspapers, at least.
Add the Miami Archdiocese to the list of plaintiffs against the ACA mandatory birth control coverage: Miami Archdiocese sues over birth control mandate
One thing we have not mentioned here is the release of names from the Boy Scout files. There is a database here: Database: Search the Boy Scout ‘Perversion’ Files where you can search these files, and seeing all the names of pedophiles is very disturbing. Pages and pages of names!
Damn, I gotta lighten the mood, all these stories are depressing me. How about a birth control story that is funny? Giants rookie David Wilson compares himself to birth control, thinks he’ll be a Hall of Famer
In his first NFL game, New York Giants rookie running back David Wilson found himself in Tom Coughlin’s doghouse after fumbling on just his second rushing attempt of his career, a costly fumble that derailed a possible scoring drive. That fumble may have contributed to Wilson receiving just four rushing attempts over the following three weeks, but it hasn’t affected his confidence.
According to Bob Glauber of Newsday, Wilson just thinks the team needs to believe in him and he’ll get the job done when called upon.
“I’m like birth control. You have to believe in me. Like birth control, 99.9 percent of the time I’m going to come through for you,” Wilson said.
“I never know when that opportunity is coming, and that’s why you have to stay prepared. But when I do get that opportunity, I’m going to get lost in the moment and keep it going. Once I get my chance to go out there and play football and do what I do, I’m not going to want to let go of that.”
I’m like birth control…. I’m gonna come through for you, 99.9 percent of the time. Sounds like a Obama t-shirt to me!
I guess you all may have seen the move Murdoch is making here in the US, rumor has it he is looking to buy Chicago Tribune and the LA Times.
Here is a quick read for you on the GOP agenda: An Excerpt From “How to Rig an Election: The G.O.P. aims to paint the country red”—By Victoria Collier (Harper’s Magazine)
I saved this next article from last week, it was very interesting to read and watch these videos. Check it out: ReConstitution 2012: Visualizing of the Language of the Debates in Real Time
“We wanted to offer a tool for people to objectively look at the debates, as opposed to deal with pundits, who come on immediately after and with no data tell you who won or lost the debate,” John Rothenberg explains in this short video from the Creators Project. His emphasis — “with no data!” — is indignant. Rothenberg and the rest of the team at Sosolimited, an art and technology studio founded by a group of MIT grads, decided to build an interactive web app to provide a radically different perspective on the debates.
ReConstitution 2012 is a dizzying display of animated typography, color-coded words splashing across a web page as the debate progresses. You can follow the first debate in real time, fast forward (x2) or super fast forward (x10). The program runs a statistical analysis of Obama and Romney’s words to highlight those associated with positive and negative emotions, or even lying. Click on “stats” to compare the candidates on “positivity” or “shit they repeat” — words like “tax” and “small business,” of course. The candidates are also placed on a sliding scale from “truthy” to “deceptive,” based on how much their language patterns match those statistically associated with lying or telling the truth. Using “we” instead of “I,” for example, is supposedly a sign of deception.
Bloomberg has some bones to pick with Obama and Romney: Bloomberg Has Tough Criticism for Obama and Romney
For Mr. Romney: “I do think that Romney’s business experience would be valuable, but I don’t know that running Bain Capital gives you the experience to run the country.”
For Mr. Obama: “This business of ‘Well, they can afford it; they should pay their fair share?’ Who are you to say ‘Somebody else’s fair share?’ ”
For both: “Their economic plans are not real. I think that’s clear.”
Asshole! But…if that comment about fair share is all he is critical of, sounds a bit like sour grapes from a man who is going to be hit with Obama’s kind of fair share.
The latest on the poll watch, well as of midnight, via Nate Silver: Oct. 20: Calm Day in Forecast, but Volatility Ahead
Ohio’s largest newspaper endorses Obama. Ohio newspaper again backs Obama, though with ‘less enthusiasm or optimism’
Less enthusiasm? That is an understatement.
Drudge has tweeted some surprise crap about Gloria Allred, and Joe Cannon takes a look at it here: Cannonfire…The new October surprise (update) Supposedly, Gloria Allred has a game-changing October Surprise ready to go.
Joseph thinks it has something to do with a Democrat, but Radar thinks the dirt is on it is Mitt himself.
Emptywheel thinks the “October Surprise” has to do with Iran, and that Hillary is involved…Hint: If Hillary’s Involved with Negotiations, They’ve Started Already
Have you noticed how items at the grocery store seem to have the same size packaging but less product? Supermarkets Find that Less Inventory Means More Money (and Less Waste): Scientific American
We think we want more. We actually want less: less variety, less confusion, less options. This counterintuitive Paradox of Choice (watch the TED talk by Swarthmore College psychologist Barry Schwartz to understand how this works) is driving a new movement by supermarkets, restaurants, and others to slash some of the billions of dollars in food waste every year, and save hundreds of millions of dollars, by doing something simple: offering less.
Ugh….Yeah, but keep the price the same, we love paying more for stuff and get less for our money!
Hey, this next link I found funny, now I know for sure I could never get a job as a Met Police Officer…not because my ass is so big! But because I have too many tattoos! Tattoo ban for Metropolitan Police officers
The head of the Metropolitan Police has banned officers and staff from getting visible tattoos because they “damage the professional image” of the force.
Whoa there! That ain’t right!
The memo sent to officers and civilian staff on Monday made clear they must not get any more visible tattoos and declare all those they currently have within a month, or face a disciplinary hearing.
The Met’s official statement said: “The standard of appearance required from serving police officers and staff has recently been reviewed to promote consistency.”
It also said applicants wanting to join the police service were already to declare tattoos.
Mr Tully said it seemed rather a harsh policy and questioned the need to use misconduct procedures over tattoos.
“Clearly anything that is overtly offensive shouldn’t be allowed but I think using the sledgehammer, which the commissioner seems to want to use for gross misconduct under our discipline procedures, for anyone who has these or doesn’t declare them is a bit heavy handed.”
Damn, taking it too far in my opinion.
I know I started this post about animal stories, well…take a look at these images from a 15th century manuscript…beasties and hunting drawings:
BibliOdyssey: The Time of the Hunt
Traps for squirrels:
And some kind of Quado horror creature, this dude has a face in his gut:
Personally, I like the image with the midget in a basket…but you can go look for it yourself at the link.
This video is amazing: Kind of Incredible | TPM Editors Blog
And finally one more animal story I am sure you will like: A Gorilla Is Born at Lincoln Park Zoo
They have not yet determined the sex of baby but it looks like everyone is doing fine.
Hope you all enjoy your Sunday, and we will see you around the blog later!
Posted: October 17, 2012 Filed under: 2012 elections, 2012 presidential campaign, Accommodation and Compromise, Affordable Care Act (ACA), American Gun Fetish, Barack Obama, birth control, Democratic Politics, Discrimination against women, Economy, Elections, Fox News, Gun Control, immigration, Libya, Mitt Romney, morning reads, Northern Gateway pipeline, Paycheck Fairness Act, Planned Parenthood, Religious Conscience, Reproductive Health, Reproductive Rights, Republican presidential politics, Romney-Ryan Budget Plan, U.S. Politics, VAGINA MItt Romney, Women's Healthcare | Tags: 2nd debate, binders full of women, Candy Crowley
It was a collective sigh from all the people who were relieved to see Obama giving it to Romney last night.
I plumb forgot that I had to write this post. Guess I was enjoying the commentary from all you sky dancers last night. I’m still worried about what could happen on November 6th…but as least Obama did a better job of it this time around. And kudos to Candy Crowley, she did a fantastic job as moderator….
Full debate transcript here.
I think the photo above is very telling…Romney did not have his jerk ass smirk on, nope…he sure didn’t. And I also feel that Obama was truly offended by Romney’s politicizing the deaths of our Embassy staff in Libya and it showed when Obama gave the best answer of the night to the question about Benghazi…
Josh Marshall agrees this was a stand out moment:
I’m not sure it’s the most significant. But in some ways a stand out moment for me was the exchange on Libya when Romney clearly thought he’d caught Obama in a gotcha moment (saying he referred to attack as “terrorism” the day after it happened). But if you’ve been paying attention you know that’s exactly the word he used. Whatever else you can say happened — and must is total baloney from the Romney camp — that’s the word he used. But somehow Romney hadn’t been prepped or briefed on that. And even Crowley had to factcheck him in real time. Here’s the video.
Here are a few take-aways from last night’s debate.
First I will point to Andrew Sullivan, who will not be jumping from the George Washington bridge…. Town Hall Debate: Blog Reax He has put together many of the pundits comments in this one post. So give that link a look-see.
These are just a few more observations…in link dump fashion…
1) The Obama team had clearly thought about one long-term tic in Mitt Romney’s debate demeanor: His apparently uncontrollable vulnerability to being flustered if he thinks the “rules” are not being enforced. “I’m speaking … it’s my turn.” Thus pictures like this, with Romney in a “teacher! teacher!” mode. This is the counterpart to the iconic picture of the first debate, which was Obama looking downcast and downward with a scowl. If I had more time I’d dig up one of those pics.
2) To spell it out, I agree with my Atlantic colleagues Ta-Nehisi Coates and also Robert Wright on the general flow of this one, and disagree with our National Journal colleague Ron Fournier, who considered it a no-winner squabble that left everyone worse off. Certainly there were pitched disagreements — but to me they did not amount to squabbling but rather to the expression of actual differences, on issues from Libya to taxes. Unfortunately not on the automatic-weapons question, but that’s a different topic.
I still think that picture I put up top is better…
And… Fox Doesn’t Declare Debate Winner, Focuses On ‘Aggressive’ Obama, Romney’s Botched Libya Response (Well, no surprise there.)
One of the trends from the debate was taken from a comment Mitt made about binders full of women. In fact, I thought that whole comment of his about hiring women for his cabinet was condescending crap! You know what? Fuck you Mitt! According to this link, (h/t Boston Boomer) it was not a true story : Mind The Binder – Talking Politics
What actually happened was that in 2002 — prior to the election, not even knowing yet whether it would be a Republican or Democratic administration — a bipartisan group of women in Massachusetts formed MassGAP to address the problem of few women in senior leadership positions in state government. There were more than 40 organizations involved with the Massachusetts Women’s Political Caucus (also bipartisan) as the lead sponsor.
They did the research and put together the binder full of women qualified for all the different cabinet positions, agency heads, and authorities and commissions. They presented this binder to Governor Romney when he was elected.
I have written about this before, in various contexts; tonight I’ve checked with several people directly involved in the MassGAP effort who confirm that this history as I’ve just presented it is correct — and that Romney’s claim tonight, that he asked for such a study, is false.
I will write more about this later, but for tonight let me just make a few quick additional points. First of all, according to MassGAP and MWPC, Romney did appoint 14 women out of his first 33 senior-level appointments, which is a reasonably impressive 42 percent. However, as I have reported before, those were almost all to head departments and agencies that he didn’t care about — and in some cases, that he quite specifically wanted to not really do anything. None of the senior positions Romney cared about — budget, business development, etc. — went to women.
Secondly, a UMass-Boston study found that the percentage of senior-level appointed positions held by women actually declined throughout the Romney administration, from 30.0% prior to his taking office, to 29.7% in July 2004, to 27.6% near the end of his term in November 2006. (It then began rapidly rising when Deval Patrick took office.)
Third, note that in Romney’s story as he tells it, this man who had led and consulted for businesses for 25 years didn’t know any qualified women, or know where to find any qualified women. So what does that say?
We will keep up with this story…of course.
Anyway, TRENDING: ‘Binders full of women’ raises brows – CNN Political Ticker – CNN.com Blogs
Did Mitt Romney really request that as governor of Massachusetts, he be brought “whole binders full of women?” It was his response to a question – on gender pay inequality – which turned heads and started fingers tapping on keyboards. Before the debate was over, there was a Twitter hashtag, a blog, a series of memes, and a Facebook page with over 100,000 fans. The phrase was the third-fastest rising search on Google during the debate.
These are good:
It prompted memes, such as Hugh Heffner in what appears to be a library: “Binders full of women? Oh sure, I’ve got hundreds of them.”
Referencing an investment by Romney’s former company, Robert Drakes asked on Facebook, “Do they sell #BindersFullOfWomen at Staples?”
Others, such as Joi Jamison’s post to Facebook, get at the heart of the matter: “Binders full of women cost 77 cents, while binders full of men cost $1.”
The Obama campaign was in on it as well: a paid post from President Barack Obama’s official campaign account appeared atop searches for “binders full of women” on Twitter.
In the second question of the night, voter Katherine Fenton queried Obama: “In what new ways to you intend to rectify the inequalities in the workplace, specifically regarding females making only 72 percent of what their male counterparts earn?”
The incumbent cited the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which was the first piece of legislation he signed into law.
Romney, who worked in business, then served as governor of Massachusetts, said he “learned a great deal” about the inequalities between men and women in the workplace when chief executive of his state.
“I had the chance to pull together a cabinet and all the applicants seemed to be men,” Romney said. And I – and I went to my staff, and I said, ‘How come all the people for these jobs are – are all men?’ They said, “Well, these are the people that have the qualifications.’ “
Romney said he requested “a concerted effort to go out and find women who had backgrounds that could be qualified to become members of our cabinet.”
Then, the sound bite which drove the online chatter.
“I went to a number of women’s groups and said, ‘Can you help us find folks,’ and they brought us whole binders full of women,” Romney said.
The tweets and posts quickly stacked up.
You can read lots of tweets here at hastag.org…#BindersFullOfWomen
Or, check out this tumblr: Binders Full Of Women
That is a great way to end this post…so what’s going on in your part of the world?
Posted: August 16, 2012 Filed under: 2012 presidential campaign, Discrimination against women, fundamentalist Christians, GLBT Rights, Human Rights, immigration, Marriage Equality, Mitt Romney, Paycheck Fairness Act, Planned Parenthood, racism, Republican politics, right wing hate grouups, The Right Wing, War on Women | Tags: antisemitism, Hungary, Jobbik, Szegedi
I just could not help myself, that cartoon was too dang funny.
I have some photo galleries to share with you in a bit, first let’s take a look at one of the news items from earlier today.
Rising star of Hungarian anti-Semitic party forced to resign after he discovers his Jewish heritage
He was a rising star in Hungary’s far-right Jobbik Party, and was notorious for his incendiary anti-semitic comments – including attacks on the ‘Jewishness’ of the political elite; but Csanad Szegedi’s career as an ultra-nationalist standard bearer now looks to be over after the revelation that he is in fact Jewish.
Szegedi, who had in the past accused Jews of ‘buying up the country’, faced weeks of Internet rumours about his ancestry before acknowledging in June that his grandparents on his mother’s side were Jews.
It emerged that his grandfather was a forced labour camp veteran and that his grandmother was a survivor of the Auschwitz death camp.
Following the revelation the 30-year-old has been politically exiled from Jobbik, and his career has been left in ruins. He resigned from the party last month after concerted pressure.
Anyone who tells you that the Holocaust can never happen again is wrong.
After resigning from the Jobbik party last month Szegedi now faces pressure to give up his seat in the European Parliament as well.
Jobbik claims its issue with Szegedi is the alleged bribery, rather than his Jewish roots.
Szegedi came to prominence as a founder member of the Hungarian Guard. The group formed in 2007 wore black uniforms and striped flags recalling the Arrow Cross, a pro-Nazi party which governed Hungary at the end of World War II and killed thousands of Jews.
In all, 550,000 Hungarian Jews were killed during the Holocaust, most of them after being sent in trains to death camps like Auschwitz.
The Hungarian Guard was banned by the courts in 2009 but Szegedi had allegedly already joined Jobbik party, which was launched in 2003. Jobbik quickly rose to become the biggest far-right political force in Hungary.
And to think this kind of stuff is going on here in the US as well. It isn’t just Jews, but any ethnic or cultural group, LGBTs or Women, or non-christian religion, that the far right wing can manipulate to their kind of anti platform.
Case in point:
Arizona Won’t Grant Licenses to Immigrants in Obama Program – SFGate
Challengers of Pa. Voter Photo ID Law File Appeal – ABC News
Dispatches From The War On Women: Meet Paul Ryan | Care2 Causes
Paul Ryan Sponsored a Bill that Would Allow Rapists to Stop their Victims from Aborting
Bachmann, Gaffney, and the GOP’s Anti-Muslim Culture of Conspiracy – The Daily Beast
Romney Holds Meeting With Supporters Of Bachmann’s Anti-Muslim Witch Hunt | ThinkProgress
Westboro Baptist Church Plans Protest At GaymerCon, 2013′s LGBT Geek And Gaming Convention
Well, you get where I’m coming from….
There is a quote from the book Origins of Totalitarianism, written by Hannah Arendt that I want to bring into the discussion. I would like your view on it…*
Friedrich Engels once remarked that the protagonist of the antisemitic movement of his him were noblemen, and its chorus the howling mob of the petty bourgeoisie. This is true not only for Germany, but also for Austria’s Christian Socialism and France’s Anti-Dreyfusards. In all these cases, the aristocracy, in a desperate last struggle, tried to ally itself with the conservative forces of the churches-the Catholic Church in Austria and France, the Protestant Church in Germany-under the pretext of fighting liberalism with the weapons of Christianity. The mob was only a means to strengthen their position, to give their voices a greater resonance. Obviously they neither could nor wanted to organize the mob, and would dismiss it once their aim was achieved. But they discovered that antisemitic slogans were highly effective in mobilizing large strata of the population.
Now, think about that for a minute, and then take a look at these pictures:
BBC News – Gorilla brothers Kesho and Alf ‘joy’ at Longleat reunion
They sure look happy to see each other don’t they?
Well, at least we ended this post on a loving note. Love Your Brother? Yes….I think we should.
*Arendt, Hannah, Origins of Totalitarianism The Nation-State; The birth of Antisemitism, Harcourt Books, 1994. Original Published 1951. (37–38)
Posted: June 15, 2012 Filed under: 2012 elections, 2012 presidential campaign, abortion rights, Accommodation and Compromise, Barack Obama, birth control, campaign financing, Congress, Corporate Crime, corporate greed, corporate money, corruption, Discrimination against women, Economy, Foreign Affairs, Injustice system, Mitt Romney, open thread, Paycheck Fairness Act, Planned Parenthood, PLUB Pro-Life-Until-Birth, Political and Editorial Cartoons, Psychopaths in charge, Religious Conscience, Reproductive Health, Reproductive Rights, Republican politics, Republican Tax Fetishists, right wing hate grouups, Russia, SDB Evening News Reads, Syria, the GOP, U.S. Politics, unemployment, War on Women, Women's Healthcare, Women's Rights, worker rights
Tonight is my last post before I head to the swamp…by that I mean Washington, D.C. I was eleven the last time I went to DC…let’s see if the Hall of Dinosaurs is closed like it was way back then. One thing is for damn sure, my dad will not be able to lift my fatass this time so I can look through the little window on the exhibit’s locked doors.
Anyway, it is also exciting because while we are in DC, I am getting my tattoo done, the one that Tashi designed for me. So…my family is in for a good time and I cannot wait.
With all that being said, here is your Friday Nite Lite post, enjoy!
Syria has been one of those stories that seems to be never-ending. So let’s start by taking a look at some editorial cartoons on the Russian Connection.
For another take…
And just one more:
Oh boy, now we head to the states, first let’s start with my Banjoville State of Georgia:
Florida, you’re up next…here we go!
Oooweee! Let’s hear it for Wisconsin, Hoot…Hoot!
That one about Wisconsin is a good segue into the next cartoon…on corporate money:
And with that we come to the GOP section of this political editorial mega post.
This one is by Deb Milbrath, freelance artist, and she has some real good ones. Be sure to check her other cartoons out: GOP GUTS – Political Cartoon by Deb Milbrath, Freelance – 06/12/2012
And no, Obama can’t be the puck…
What about those few Republicans who are coming out of the Norquist closet?
I have to laugh at the look on that elephant’s face, it really does look like one of those guys who should be in a GOP Asshole Men of the Month Calendar. Can you imagine it? With Red Letter days for various legislative anniversaries that celebrate the GOP’s War on Women…including a handy pack of “period” stamps…little stickers that look like menstrual pads so that women can keep track of their periods, and since life begins at ovulation, a little fetus sticker to remind these women what their only reason for “living” should be….being an incubator for the PLUBs (Pro-Life-Until-Birth). Oh but wait, maybe those little stickers are a bit too offensive and “disruptive” for mixed company!
Now, this next cartoon is fantastic!
I love the way John Cole has drawn Mitt doing a Rodney Dangerfield thing with his collar…
Speaking of Mitt:
There should be a blade listed as LGBT Rights and Women’s reproductive health in that one!
As far as a comment on the economy…
The woman in that cartoon looks exactly how I feel…
Did you all hear about the Bacon Sundae over at Burger King?
One thing I don’t get is that there is so much outrage from the right-wing about all those “brown” immigrants picking tomatoes, yet WTF was that crap they call a “Congressional Hearing” yesterday when Jamie Dimon got the gratuitous ass kissing treatment.
AAEC – Political Cartoon by Nick Anderson, Houston Chronicle – 06/15/2012
And about that ass kissing!
Which reminds of a skit on Dave Chappelle:
White Collar Crime…”Law and Order” Very funny…check it out!
And, I have saved the best for last, this time it is a double dose of good stuff. First from Mike Luckovich: 6/15 Mike Luckovich cartoon: Cracking down | Mike Luckovich
And then finally this one:
AAEC – Political Cartoon by Chan Lowe, Sun-Sentinel – 06/15/2012
Have a wonderful weekend, and hopefully I can post some pictures and thoughts as I tour our Nation’s Capital…Otherwise…this sister will be sticking a sock in it until June 27th…catch y’all later in a couple of weeks!