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Archive for June 13th, 2008

Democrats See Pick Up Chance in VA-11

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 13th, 2008 4:43 am by HL

Democrats See Pick Up Chance in VA-11
CQ Politics changes its rating on VA-11 and now says it leans Democratic because “a strong candidate” has been picked and “a favorable electoral environment give Democrats an advantage.”

The seat is currently held by retiring Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA).


This Brave Nation: Choose To Act

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 13th, 2008 4:41 am by HL

This Brave Nation: Choose To Act

The Nation and Brave New Films have joined together to produce a series of conversations on activism, the choices we make — and the power that we could all have if we lift up our voices for change.  This prior post has information about the series and earlier clips from the series — they are amazing, so do watch them if you haven’t yet.  The next installment of This Brave Nation has been released, and it is well worth your time to watch it…

There are moments in all of our lives where we are faced with the choice of doing something to correct a wrong — or doing nothing. We all have them, and I’d like to think that, in my life anyway, I’ve tried to choose the more difficult yet more rewarding path of fighting for something better, more often than not.

But there are still a whole lot more forks in the road to meet this challenge in the days ahead.

When we had Lou Dubose on to discuss his and Molly Ivins’ last book together, the book salon‘s focus was the discussion of all of the information the two of them had been able to dig out and expose through the years. But the most amazing thing by far was Molly’s commitment to give a speech a month on the First Amendment, for years and years of her life, often in little out-of-the-way places so hostile, the meetings had to take place in the middle of the night in someone’s basement. That takes some serious guts — and a lot of heart.

The Nation and Brave New Films have joined together to produce a series of conversations on activism, the choices we make — and the power that we could all have if we lift up our voices for change. This prior post has information about the series and earlier clips from the series — they are amazing, so do watch them if you haven’t yet. The next installment of This Brave Nation has been released, and it is well worth your time to watch it:

Bonnie Raitt is a legendary musician, feminist, and activist. Dolores Huerta is a legendary organizer, feminist, and activist. Both women have achieved great successes in their fields. While one was marching on the streets for migrant laborers, the other was headlining concerts bringing attention to the risks of nuclear energy and global warming. They’re two distinctly different women who came from radically different backgrounds, but both chose to spend their lives trying to make the world a better place. In this conversation, Raitt and Huerta talk about their passions, regrets, fears, and most of all their dreams for future generations.

Each of us has issues about which we are passionate. Imagine, for a moment, what we could do if we all worked together to solve the problems we face, to heal the divisions we feel, to lift up those of us who need a hand so that they, in turn, could lift up the folks behind them…just imagine it. And then, go out and find a way to do it.

Choose to act.

And if you need some inspiration on things you can act on today, here are a few ideas:

— Make some calls to members of Congress about FISA. bmaz helpfully put together some background information for everyone. The rule of law needs your voice. Today.

— Get involved in actions to combat the increasingly desperate issues of poverty. See if there is an action near you scheduled for July 17th — or how you can help get one going. Donate to your local food bank or shelter. Talk to people you know about issues surrounding poverty — get involved with initiatives near you — and talk with folks about what their choices in November could mean for those who most need a hand.

— Get involved with the One campaign. Or any number of other groups helping combat global hunger, AIDS, and any number of other issues.

— Volunteer for a local political campaign. Just show up at a campaign office and offer to make calls, canvass, whatever is needed. Local candidates make decisions which impact your daily life immediately — having better folks on your school board, on your city council and elsewhere can make a huge difference for your community. And it also is a great training ground for better candidates for national office.

— Find a local program that needs volunteers and be one: literacy programs, Habitat for Humanity building, battered women’s shelters or missions or food banks or…whatever your pet issue might be, there is likely a group in your community who could desperately use a little bit of your time to make it better.



Reactions to Supreme Court Detainee Decision

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 13th, 2008 4:40 am by HL

Reactions to Supreme Court Detainee Decision

More reaction to the Gitmo detainee decision (pdf):

[More…]

  • TChris:

    Remember that this was a 5-4 decision, that Justice Stevens will not live forever, and that John McCain would likely nominate as his replacement someone in the mold of Chief Justice Roberts or Justice Alito, both of whom dissented from the notion that indefinite detention should be subject to judicial review. The presidential election will have enormous consequences to our nation's commitment to the rule of law and to the constitutional values of freedom and fairness that have served us so well for so long.


Thursday Is New Jobless Day

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 13th, 2008 4:39 am by HL

Thursday Is New Jobless Day
CNBC ticker says 384,000 lucky duckies. That’s a big number! More when I find info on the full release.

…continuing claims up too.

In the week ending June 7, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 384,000, an increase of 25,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 359,000. The 4-week moving average was 371,500, an increase of 2,500 from the previous week’s revised average of 369,000.

The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.4 percent for the week ending May 31, an increase of 0.1 percentage point from the prior week’s unrevised rate of 2.3 percent.

The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending May 31 was 3,139,000, an increase of 58,000 from the preceding week’s revised level of 3,081,000. The 4-week moving average was 3,099,250, an increase of 16,500 from the preceding week’s revised average of 3,082,750.

Thursday Night Thread
Enjoy.


Zapped! How Irradiation Is Threatening Our Food System

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 13th, 2008 4:38 am by HL

Zapped! How Irradiation Is Threatening Our Food System
Lab animals fed irradiated food have developed illnesses from cancer to immune system failure. So why is the government pushing the same food on you?


Why Obama Should Have Picked Me

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 13th, 2008 4:37 am by HL

Why Obama Should Have Picked Me
Like many progressives I was disappointed to hear the line-up for Obama’s economic team going into the general election. The lead figure will be Jason Furman, who was the director of the Hamilton Project at Brookings. This project is the…


What About Me?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 13th, 2008 4:36 am by HL

What About Me?
Dean Baker, feeling a little left out, says Obama’s new economics team is more Wall Street than Main Street….


McCain Lies About Social Security Privatization

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 13th, 2008 4:35 am by HL

McCain Lies About Social Security Privatization

In March, after ThinkProgress caught Sen. Joe Lieberman lying to cover up Sen. John McCain’s support for Social Security privatization, I posted video (with the help of reader Tom M.) from 2004 of McCain, in response to an audience question, explicitly backing Social Security privatization by name.

Q: Will privatizing Social Security be a priority for you going forward?

McCAIN: Without privatization, I don’t see how you can possibly, over time, make sure that young Americans are able to receive Social Security benefits.

Today at a Nashua town hall (his best forum!), McCain himself lied about his position, saying:

I’m not for, quote, privatizing Social Security. I never have been. I never will be.

The DNC just juxtaposed today’s video with the 2004 video.

There’s some evidence that McCain is currently stronger than Obama with voters over 65. If they see him lie about Social Security, that edge won’t last very long.


Former GOP head gives guilty plea

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 13th, 2008 4:34 am by HL

Former GOP head gives guilty plea
Local chair, Young Republicans leader cops to non-consensual act.

Bush to give Pace Freedom Medal
Ex-Joint Chiefs chair to be honored for ‘visionary leadership.’


Army public affairs office promotes ?Obama = surrender? talking point.

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 13th, 2008 4:33 am by HL

Army public affairs office promotes ?Obama = surrender? talking point.
The Army public affairs office publishes a daily roundup of Army-related news, mostly linking to “mainstream media articles, Army press releases, foreign media stories and blogs.” A link in Tuesday’s round-up, however, was “unusual” for its “patent political bias.” It read: “Obama: World peace thru surrender (KDIHH).” Phillip Carter at the Washington Post notes what’s […]

The Army public affairs office publishes a daily roundup of Army-related news, mostly linking to “mainstream media articles, Army press releases, foreign media stories and blogs.” A link in Tuesday’s round-up, however, was “unusual” for its “patent political bias.” It read: “Obama: World peace thru surrender (KDIHH).” Phillip Carter at the Washington Post notes what’s wrong with this story:

Seriously? Have any of these people actually read the Obama defense policy papers or speeches — or are they simply going on what they hear on Fox News and the Limbaugh network?

And more to the point, why is the Army’s official in-house public affairs shop linking to this kind of stuff? Just a few weeks ago, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff told all hands to stay out of politics. … Unfortunately, the message didn’t get to through to the Army.