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Archive for February 18th, 2009

Oh, Look … You?ve Gone and Broken Your New Doll

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 18th, 2009 5:38 am by HL

Oh, Look … You?ve Gone and Broken Your New Doll

Smash-Me Bernie

Ah, capitalism. First, we had Ponzi schemer Bernard Madoff making big money off his clients, and now here comes one ModelWorks, a toy manufacturer with an enterprising plan for how to profit off the failed financier in turn.


New York Daily News:

The $99, red-suited, pitchfork-wielding figure comes with a golden hammer.

You see, you’re not just buying Bernie, but also the fun of smashing him to smithereens.

The maker hopes its “Smash-Me Bernie” doll – available online at minimemodelworks.com – could become a “Tickle Me Elmo” for grownups who haven’t lost all their money in a Ponzi scheme.

“A lot of people have been asking about it,” Graeme Warring of ModelWorks said Sunday at the Jacob Javits Convention Center.

ModelWorks can even create a custom figure based on your own photograph through its My Mini-Me line.

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Obama’s War On Terror May Resemble Bush’s In Some Areas

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 18th, 2009 5:37 am by HL

Obama’s War On Terror May Resemble Bush’s In Some Areas
WASHINGTON — Even as it pulls back from harsh interrogations and other sharply debated aspects of George W. Bush’s “war on terrorism,” the Obama administration…

Labor Rips Burris For Unclear Stance On Employee Free Choice Act
As if he wasn’t dealing with enough this week, newly appointed Sen. Roland Burris (D-Ill.) is coming in for heavy criticism from some of President…

Michael Shaw: Reading The Pictures: Obama’s Catering To The Right
This latest slide show from the White House — tracking the President’s marketing of the stimulus bill — seeks to clearly demonstrate (and document)…

James Warren: Taking the Long View
By the time President Obama signed the historic stimulus package in Denver, perhaps the toughest challenge posed to him and aides was unintentionally underscored on our hyperkinetic financial news cable channels: Can he really and truly get us to take the long view? And can he both exploit and turn his back on the same media technologies that impact how we respond to events and crises?


The Rush to Wait

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 18th, 2009 5:36 am by HL

The Rush to Wait
The big story last week was the incredible Congressional rush to pass a bill that was more than a thousand pages long in just two days– after which it sat on the President’s desk for three days while the Obamas were away on a holiday. There is the same complete inconsistency in the bill itself. Despite the urgency in President Obama’s rhetoric, as well as in Congress’ haste in passing a bill which few– if any– members had time to read, much less consider, most of the actual spending will take place next year, at the earliest.

How Green Is Thy Stimulus?
by Toni Johnson The Obama administration hopes money spent to stimulate the economy out of recession can do double duty by advancing its green agenda. Along with congressional Democrats, the administration infused the stimulus bill with initiatives meant to create “green jobs” that President Obama says will include “building the wind turbines and solar panels and fuel-efficient cars that will lower our dependence on foreign oil.” But debate exists about what constitutes a green job and what economic impact these jobs will have.


Cornyn Took Caribbean Junket On Stanford’s Dime

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 18th, 2009 5:35 am by HL

Cornyn Took Caribbean Junket On Stanford’s Dime
So we already knew that Allen Stanford — the Texas banker charged by the SEC today with running an $8 billion “fraud of shocking magnitude” — had some pretty impressive political contacts with both parties. But it looks like his…

Burris Now Admits He Tried To Raise Money For Blago
This is getting kind of ridiculous. Roland Burris has now admitted he tried to raise money for Rod Blagojevich, at the request of the former governor’s brother. The Chicago Tribune reports: U.S. Sen. Roland Burris has acknowledged he sought to…





Justice Department Replaces Stevens Prosecution Team
Talk about ironic. Amid concerns over the integrity of their work, the Justice Department has removed the head of the Public Integrity Section and several other prosecutors from the Ted Stevens trial, according to court filings examined by The Politico….






If Women Do Have Lower Libidos, It Would Make Sense

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 18th, 2009 5:33 am by HL

If Women Do Have Lower Libidos, It Would Make Sense
The word slut describes women, not men. We still live in a world where Good Girls Don’t. No wonder many women have trouble being sexual.

The New Political Economy of Immigration
The "enforcement only" policy has fostered a national immigrant prison complex that feeds on ever-increasing numbers of arrested immigrants.

Stop the Campaign to Loot Social Security
Although Obama has stated his support for Social Security, progressives need to fight against private interests who will push him to compromise.

Is It Possible to Be a Conscientious Meat Eater?
The "new meat movement" is against industrial meat production, but not against eating meat. Their thinking is problematic.

Will DC "Reformers" Create a Health Care System as Skewed Towards the Rich as the Rest of the Economy?
Our sharply tiered health care system reflects America’s rampant inequality.


Presented By:

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 18th, 2009 5:32 am by HL

Presented By:

Israeli Death Trip?
Back in the 1970’s, there was a cool book about Wisconsin in the 1890’s. It was called “Wisconsin Death Trip.” It was not about suicidal political decisions made by the progressive folk of the Badger State. It consisted of photographs…

Israel Decides on Big Settlement Expansion…What Will Obama Do?
Did you ever consider what the State of Israel could accomplish if it didn’t dedicate its resources to security (legitimate) and maintaining the occupation (illegitimate)? Here’s a clue. Today’s Israeli media reports that the Technion, Israel’s MIT, has developed a…


Japanese Foreign Minister resigns after purportedly appearing drunk at briefing with reporters.

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 18th, 2009 5:31 am by HL

Japanese Foreign Minister resigns after purportedly appearing drunk at briefing with reporters.
During a G-7 meeting in Rome this weekend, Japanese Finance Minister Shoichi Nakagawa — the man in charge of the world’s 2nd largest economy — attended a press conference in what appeared to be a drunken state. During the event, “Mr Nakagawa slurred, yawned, lost his train of thought and appeared to nod off during […]

During a G-7 meeting in Rome this weekend, Japanese Finance Minister Shoichi Nakagawa — the man in charge of the world’s 2nd largest economy — attended a press conference in what appeared to be a drunken state. During the event, “Mr Nakagawa slurred, yawned, lost his train of thought and appeared to nod off during a reporter’s question. At one point, he called the G7 ‘the G20’ and could not recall Japan’s present rate of interest.” Nakgawa blamed a head cold: “I took a larger-than-usual portion of cold medicine,” he said. Last night, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow said she wasn’t buying it. “I don’t speak Japanese, but I do speak hammered,” she said. “And that dude was hammered.” Watch it:

Today, Nakagawa resigned his position. “I decided it would be better for the country if I quit,” he said. “I apologize for causing a commotion through not taking enough care of my health.” Japan is currently undergoing its worst economic crisis since World War II.

Roll Call claims Republicans have put their culture war ?knives away,? but they haven?t.
In an article titled “GOP Puts Away Knives in Culture Wars,” Roll Call reports this morning that “social issues have taken a back seat to economic concerns as the GOP struggles to find its way.” Acknowledging that prominent Republicans have pushed culture war attacks against President Obama and congressional Democrats, the paper still argues that […]

In an article titled “GOP Puts Away Knives in Culture Wars,” Roll Call reports this morning that “social issues have taken a back seat to economic concerns as the GOP struggles to find its way.” Acknowledging that prominent Republicans have pushed culture war attacks against President Obama and congressional Democrats, the paper still argues that Republicans have a “lack of interest” in “reigniting the culture wars“:

Congressional Republicans said the lack of focus on social matters is simply a result of being the minority party during one of the nation’s worst economic slumps.

The general lack of interest among Republicans in reigniting the culture wars is particularly visible in the Senate, where leadership has actively sought to keep the Conference’s message on the economy and away from divisive social issues.

“I can’t imagine how out of touch people would think we are if we weren’t focused on the economy,” one GOP leadership aide said.

But the fact is, many of the conservative attacks on President Obama’s economic recovery plan have been based in the culture wars. During the stimulus debate, congressional conservatives attacked family planning provisions and STD prevention provisions. Some, such as Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), even falsely claimed that the bill was “an attack on people of faith.” Clearly, the GOP’s culture war “knives” are still out.


Statement by the President on Afghanistan

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on February 18th, 2009 5:30 am by HL

Statement by the President on Afghanistan
There is no more solemn duty as President than the decision to deploy our armed forces into harm’s way. I do it today mindful that the situation in Afghanistanand Pakistan demands urgent attention and swift action. The Taliban is resurgent in Afghanistan, and al Qaeda supports the insurgency an…

Obama, Gates at Odds Over Proposed Protections for National Security Whistleblowers
During an election featuring Democratic allegations that U.S. intelligence was distorted to justify a misbegotten war, Barack Obama endorsed new protections for national security officers who blow the whistle on abusive, corrupt or illegal behavior, by offering them the right to sue for damages and…

Back Home in Alaska, Palin Faces Scrutiny and Second-Guessing From All Sides
JUNEAU, Alaska — A couple of weeks before the Alaska legislature began this year’s session, a bipartisan group of state senators on a retreat a few hours from here invited Gov. Sarah Palin to join them. Accompanied by a retinue of advisers, she took a seat at one end of a conference table and…

EPA May Reverse Bush, Limit Carbon Emissions From Coal-Fired Plants
The Environmental Protection Agency will reopen the possibility of regulating carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired power plants, tossing aside a December Bush administration memorandum that declared that the agency would not limit the emissions.

Obama’s Remarks at Stimulus Bill Signing
COLORADO GOV. BILL RITTER (D): Thank you. Good afternoon. I’m Bill Ritter, governor of the great state of Colorado.