SDB Evening News Reads for 082311: Libya, No Townhalls For You, Maxine …Say the word “Black”

Good Afternoon…or should I say Evening.

Wow, what a news day today…with the earth shattering earthquake that hit Virginia, to the earth shattering news that Libyan Rebels have invaded the Mad Dog’s compound…there is just so much to report on.

First, I know I am sounding like a broken record, but this Hurricane Irene is something people in the possible track should pay attention to:

Hurricane IRENE

Coastal Watches/Warnings and 5-Day Forecast Cone for Storm Center

Click image to zoom in – Download GIS data
Other images: 5-Day track on3-Day track on3-Day track off

[Image of 5-day forecast and coastal areas under a warning or a watch]


Hey, being born and raised in Florida…you get used to paying attention to Hurricane Warnings when they are issued. So keep an eye on Irene.

Alright, now here is what is going on in Libya:

Libya Live Blog | Al Jazeera Blogs

Al Jazeera staff and correspondents update you on important developments in the Libya uprising.

Al Jazeera is not responsible for content derived from external sites.

AJE Live Stream – Special Coverage: Libya Uprising – Tweeting revolutions

Rebels Overrun Gadhafi Compound –

Libyans poured into streets surrounding Moammar Gadhafi’s fortress-like compound in Tripoli on Tuesday, after rebels captured it following fierce street battles against forces loyal to the longtime ruler.

Streets around the Bab al-Aziziya compound rang with mortars, heavy machine-guns and antiaircraft guns throughout much of the day as rebels took up positions around the symbolic heart of Col. Gadhafi’s regime.

[0823libyass04] Associated Press

An explosion hit near Gadhafi’s main compound in the Bab al-Aziziya district in Tripoli on Tuesday.

Rebels are looting Gaddafi’s stuff, and walking out of the compound with clothing and other Gaddafi items, the look of joy on their faces is really something to see…But of course, Gaddafi is nowhere to be found…

I am going to move on to the US political front.

Obama is getting it from both sides today, first I will point out what the GOP Post that has this offering today:  Obama’s claim that GOP is holding up trade deals – The Fact Checker – The Washington Post

“Let’s pass trade deals to level the playing field for our businesses. . . ..These are common-sense ideas – ideas that have been supported by both Democrats and Republicans. The only thing holding them back is politics. The only thing preventing us from passing these bills is the refusal by some in Congress to put country ahead of party. That’s the problem right now. That’s what’s holding this country back. That’s what we have to change.”

— President Obama, weekly address, Aug. 20, 2011

Those were pretty tough words by the president over the weekend — “the only thing preventing us from passing these bills is the refusal by some in Congress to put country ahead of party,” referring to bills he suggests are bottled up in Congress, including free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama.

Not so fast, cry the Republicans: The White House has never submitted the trade bills to Congress for approval. The issue is so confusing — and Obama has been demanding immediate action for so long — that one White House spokesman actually expressed surprise this month when reporters noted the trade bills have not been submitted.

“Have we not sent them over?” asked Josh Earnest, drawing laughter from the press corps. “I mean, look, clearly the legislative mechanics are something that I’m not intimately steeped in.”

And now for Maxine Waters latest smack down, what a woman!

Waters to Obama aide: Say ‘black’ – Jennifer Epstein –

Maxine Waters speaks at a news conference. | AP Photo

‘Let me hear you say ‘black’, Maxine Waters said. | AP Photo Close

Rep. Maxine Waters and other black leaders lobbed heated questions at one of President Barack Obama’s top jobs advisers Monday, pressing him to confirm the White House is focusing on creating jobs in struggling African-American communities — and to say the word “black.”

Don Graves, the executive director of the President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, said at a nighttime forum at a black church in Miami that the president is “focused on every community across the country,” The Miami Herald reported.

And here is the best part…Gotta love Maxine!

But when he added that “certain communities have been hit harder than other communities,” Waters pushed him. “Let me hear you say ‘black,’” the California Democrat said.

As the crowd cheered, The Washington Post said in its report on the Congressional Black Caucus-sponsored event, Graves quietly said: “black, African-American, Latino — we’re going to focus on getting people back to work.”

Graves replied “quietly,” oh I bet…sounds more like he responded “sheepishly” to me!

Waters is one of the only politicians making connections with the people lately…Invisible Town Hall Revolution Gets Bigger and Bigger | FDL News Desk

Chris Bowers notes a couple of my posts about the invisible town hall revolution, supplementing it with other examples of protests and progressive questioners at GOP town hall meetings from around the country. He writes:

These actions are truly widespread. As such, it’s worth wondering why the media coverage has primarily been restricted to local news and not become a significant national narrative. A rationale sympathetic to the national political media would argue that these town halls lack the threat of imminent violence that was simmering in 2009, thus rendering the 2011 iteration both tame and repetitive as a story. A less sympathetic rationale would be that the national political media is simply differential to the angry conservatives, who are believed to have dominated electoral politics for decades and are thus allocated disproportionate attention.

First of all, the actions are more widespread than even Bowers catalogs. Here’s a protest at Dave Reichert’s office. And here’s a town hall with Rep. Jim Renacci. And one with Rep. Mike Kelly. And one with Bill Huizenga. And Bill Shuster. And Elton Gallegly. And Brian Bilbray. And Nan Hayworth. And Jeff Denham. And Andy Harris. And Marsha Blackburn. And John Culberson. And Bill Johnson. And Mario Diaz-Balart. And Joe Wilson. I could go on. The numbers of actions are in the dozens, and may reach three digits.

Dayen reports that 60% of Congress is not holding town hall meetings, which is why I found this link from CounterPunch interesting:  David Martinez: Why, That Must be Nancy Pelosi!

If any one ever needed a better reason to throw the Democratic Party into the garbage can of history, last Tuesday night’s “Town Hall Meeting” in Oakland, California, was a perfect example of the party’s pathos, duplicity and outright arrogance.

The night had been billed as a chance for people to “tell their stories” directly to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco and Congresswoman Barbara Lee of Oakland.

Here is where it gets good…

Then the event began, and the politicians filed onto the stage and were introduced. But first came stern warnings against anyone taking issue with Nancy Pelosi: Green For All’s Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins condescendingly explained to the assembled audience that this event was about “unity”, and that if we were “divided” our enemies would be made stronger. What she was really saying was that no one was going to be allowed to criticize the politicians on the stage. So she was basically calling for the antithesis of politics, which is at the very least about criticism.  She then demanded that the night’s story “will not be about the two people in the back who are angry at Leader Pelosi; tonight the story will only be about jobs!”

However, much to the event organizers’ chagrin, there were more than only two angry people in the room. As Pelosi took the stage, someone yelled “Sellout!” When Pelosi brought up the recent debt-ceiling agreement, several more people yelled at her “Well why did you vote for it then?” and the Congresswoman was forced to explain why she had sold out, saying that she had signed the budget deal to avoid the U.S. defaulting, and claimed that at least Medicare and Social Security had been saved. She neglected to mention that those programs can, and will, be put on the block by the “Super Congress” that is going to decide where the actual cuts will come from.

After a couple of more hecklers had been hustled out of the room by security, it was time for the “speakout” part of the event to start, and one by one, different people told their stories and made comments to the politicians on the stage. Everyone spoke of being out of work or too broke to make ends meet, and it was heartbreaking to hear from so many folks who were having such a rough time. One old man told the Congresspeople, “As far as I’m concerned, the Democratic Party no longer speaks for us, as they haven’t been standing up for workers or creating jobs.”

Pelosi said that the Democratic Party was going to work on “job creation” by rebuilding the US manufacturing sector. Martinez writes that he almost burst out laughing at that remark.

…after perhaps 45 minutes of people’s commentary, Pelosi announced that she would shortly be leaving to attend another event, but assured us that she would watch the rest of the people’s stories on videotape at a later date.


Then, to add insult to injury, instead of letting the remaining people have their chance to talk to the most powerful Democratic politician in the country, besides the president, the organizers announced that we would now watch a video about what other people were saying at events just like this around the country. The large video screens on the walls came to life and we began to watch a film about people doing exactly what we had been doing just five minutes prior. It was beyond ridiculous. It was kind of surreal.

So the people were then treated to a commercial…and sent home.  Take a look at the entire article, you won’t be disappointed.

Moving on to Texas…Even Teen Birth Rates Are Bigger in Texas | Mother Jones

Via Feministing, here’s a priceless video of Texas Gov. Rick Perry trying to explain that you should ignore his state’s high rates of teen pregnancy and just trust him that his abstinence-only sex education policy works. The clip is from a sit-down that Perry did with Evan Smith of the Texas Tribune in October 2010, before he threw his hat in the ring for the 2012 GOP presidential primary.

Smith asks why the governor continues to promote policies that simply tell kids not to have sex when the state has the third-highest teen pregnancy rate in the US. The state actually appears to rank fourth in teen pregnancies, but third in teen birth rates. It’s pretty bad either way.

Perry says that “Abstinence works,” and this is from “his own personal experience…” Oh, what could Jon Stewart or Colbert do with this tidbit of a quote?

Video is there at the link…

By now you have heard about Dominique Strauss-Kahn, this is a link to a Spiegel article:  A Future for DSK? French Socialists Wary of Strauss-Kahn’s Return – SPIEGEL ONLINE – News – International

While Socialists in France are pleased that charges against Dominique Strauss-Kahn have been dropped, they are wary of the role he might play in next year’s French presidential elections. Party leaders appear to be keeping a cautious distance.

The news that charges against Dominique Strauss-Kahn were dropped in New York on Tuesday has been greeted by France’s Socialist Party in Paris’ Rue Solferino with a sigh of relief. Only three days before the summer meeting of Socialists in La Rochelle, the rumors, suspicions and accusations against Strauss-Kahn and his alleged rape of Nafissatou Diallo, a housekeeper at New York’s Sofitel, will come to an end for the time being. Just two months before the Socialists will hold their primary election ahead of French presidential elections in 2012, they can finally put an end to the endless American drama surrounding their fellow party member.

For the time being is right…End of Rape Case Brings the French Relief, and Political Questions –

Many also noted that a civil case against him is still pending in New York, and the complaint filed by a French, Tristane Banon, who said he tried to rape her in 2003. French prosecutors are investigating. Her lawyer, David Koubbi, said that Ms. Banon’s case and credibility were not damaged by the events in New York and that Ms. Banon “is combative” and “saddened” by what happened to the accuser in New York, Nafissatou Diallo, “because she believes her.”

In London, the toxicology reports are back from Amy Winehouse’s autopsy: Amy Winehouse toxicology reports showed ‘no illegal substances’ | Music | The Guardian

The family of Amy Winehouse has revealed toxicology reports showed there were “no illegal substances” in her body at the time of her death.

The 27-year-old singer was found dead at her north London home last month. Her family said the reports showed alcohol was present in her body, but it is not yet known if it contributed to her death.

Well, that is quite a bit of news for you to digest, will see you later in the comments!

24 Comments on “SDB Evening News Reads for 082311: Libya, No Townhalls For You, Maxine …Say the word “Black””

    • Branjor says:

      Thanks, Minx. Earthquakes, hurricanes, blazing heat, blizzards – what happened to the NJ coast’s once moderate climate? Don’t tell me, let me guess – climate change.
      They usually don’t reach here at full strength, but I’ll keep an eye on reports.

  1. propertius says:

    Re: DSK

    What the Times fails to note is that Tristane Banon is the goddaughter of DSK’s wife:

    • northwestrain says:

      Goddaughter called him a rutting chimpanzee! So often rapists are serial rapists. In my opinion the DAs who let off the rapists are accessories to rape, enablers of rapists. Blaming the victims and re-victimizing the victims.

      • madamab says:

        Too bad Judge Leslie Crocker-Snyder didn’t win the Manhattan DA race. She was a pioneer for women’s rights in rape cases and co-authored New York State’s rape shield law. I went to one of her events and voted for her, but Vance was friends with the New York Times’ ombudsman and got the paper’s endorsement.

  2. northwestrain says:

    So the east coast gets a moderate earthquake? Now you all need a volcano. I love how mama earth sends her messages to DC!!

    As for Maxine Waters — yes — 0bowma has ignored his strongest supporters — stabbed them in the back and ignored them at the same time. That is his way. I doubt that Maxine will be able to shame 0bowma — she’s not male and she’s not super rich. He had a history of ignoring Black’s concerns before he got the keys to the white house — why the hell is he going to change now?

    And then there’s Perry — Texas has a very high teen birth rate — yep that Abstinence BS is really working for teens.

    • Minkoff Minx says:

      What I find interesting is the bit about the abstinence works for him…

      • Branjor says:

        I wish Perry’s parents had been abstinent.

      • JeanLouise says:

        Unless Perry married at sixteen, I don’t believe for a moment that he abstained from sex before marriage. He grew up in a jerk water town. I spent a lot of time in a jerk water town when I was growing up. The vast majority of the teens spent their free time getting drunk and having sex. There was nothing else to do.

      • ralphb says:

        Wonder if Paint Creek has a main street to drive up and down?

        One of my grandsons is hoping for good surf from Irene in Martin County, FL. As he put it today, “I hope she delivers the goods”. Anyway, best of luck to those in her way.

      • bostonboomer says:

        That’s what my town was like. The only things to do were drive around the drive-ins or go out to the “res” (the reservoir) and make out in cars.

      • Minkoff Minx says:

        Yup, or go watch the submarine races on the causeway.

    • JeanLouise says:

      Waters, like most of the CBC, was a strong and early supporter of Hillary. We know that Obama is not the kind of person who choosed to be professional when he can be petty.

    • bostonboomer says:

      Actually, Maxine Waters is pretty rich. She has a rich husband.

  3. ralphb says:

    JP Morgan May Take Over Bank Of America

    There is a rumor circulated on Wall St. that JP Morgan (NYSE: JPM) will take over Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) within the week. The government will support the deal with a $100 billion investment in preferred shares issued by the combined entity. Alternatively, the government may guarantee the value of a large pool of Bank of America assets. The word is that Treasury Secretary Geithner has discussed the transaction with JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon.The “merger” would completely destroy the value of BAC’s common shares.

    Well wouldn’t this be a fine kettle of fish?

  4. Minkoff Minx says:

    Well, the Washington Monument may not be leaning over, but it has some cracks…
    Washington Monument Closed | Talking Points Memo

    After a close helicopter inspection (see video here), National Parks Service finds cracks at the top of the Washington Monument and orders it closed indefinitely pending further inspections and repair.

  5. Minkoff Minx says:

    Irene is down to a Cat 1, here is the latest:
    Hurricane IRENE

    The 11pm report:



    MILES…335 KM.


  6. bostonboomer says:

    This is kind of interesting, in an ominous way: Jeb Bush warns 2012ers on hitting Obama

    Asked by Fox News host Neil Cavuto if some Republicans go too far in their criticism of Obama, Bush said flatly, “I do. I think when you start ascribing bad motives to the guy, that’s wrong. It turns off people who want solutions.

    “It’s fine to criticize him, that’s politics,” said Bush, the younger brother of former President George W. Bush, who again reiterated that he won’t run for president himself. “But just to stop there isn’t enough. You have to win with ideas, you have to win with policies. … He’s made a situation that was bad worse. He’s deserving of criticism for that. He’s not deserving of criticism for the common cold on up.”

    “If you’re a conservative, you have to persuade. You can’t just be against the president,” he added.

    Breaking with the GOP field, Bush said he’d be willing to accept new revenues as part of a deficit-reduction package.