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Archive for June 26th, 2010

Dems, White House Agree on Finance Bill

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 26th, 2010 4:53 am by HL

Dems, White House Agree on Finance Bill
After more than 20 hours of continuous wrangling, congressional Democrats and White House officials reached agreement on the final shape of legislation that would transform financial regulation, avoiding last-minute defections that threatened to upend the bill. After months of uncertainty about how the U.S. would craft new rules, the agreement offers the clearest picture since the financial crisis of how markets and the government will interact for decades to come. The common thread: large financial companies are facing a tougher leash.


Late Late Night FDL: Pigs In Space

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 26th, 2010 4:52 am by HL

Late Late Night FDL: Pigs In Space
Pigs In Space from The Muppet Show.

Pigs In Space from The Muppet Show.

What’s on your mind?


David Kipen on ‘Freedom’s Orator’

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 26th, 2010 4:51 am by HL

David Kipen on ‘Freedom’s Orator’
Robert Cohen succeeds in drawing Mario Savio back into the historical spotlight, though his biography of the 1960s student firebrand is stingy with details.

Robert Cohen succeeds in drawing Mario Savio back into the historical spotlight, though his biography of the 1960s student firebrand is stingy with details.

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‘Left, Right & Center’: The McChrystal Affair; Financial Regulation Redux
On this week’s show, Robert Scheer opines that the current financial regulation bill favors big banks—here we go again—and doesn’t do much to help consumers. Meanwhile, Gen. Stanley McChrystal is free to explore other career options.

Left, Right & Center

On this week’s show, Robert Scheer opines that the current financial regulation bill favors big banks—here we go again—and doesn’t do much to help consumers. Meanwhile, Gen. Stanley McChrystal is free to explore other career options.

Related Entries



House Democrats Mulling Standalone Jobs Bill After Senate Failure

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 26th, 2010 4:50 am by HL

House Democrats Mulling Standalone Jobs Bill After Senate Failure
WASHINGTON — The demise of Democrats’ jobs-agenda legislation means that unemployment benefits will phase out for more than 200,000 people a week. Governors who had…

Alvin McEwen: False study proves Family Research Council’s anti-gay animus
I was looking over a “study” published by the Family Research Council which supposedly proves that there is a “significant problem of homosexual misconduct in…

Doug Kendall: What to Look For at the Kagan Confirmation Hearings
Kagan would be doing the entire nation as well as the Constitution itself a service if she would use the confirmation process to express and explain her commitment to follow the Constitution — all of it.


Right-wing media distort testimony to claim Obama knew about Blagojevich “quid pro quo”

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 26th, 2010 4:49 am by HL

Right-wing media distort testimony to claim Obama knew about Blagojevich “quid pro quo”

Right-wing media are misrepresenting testimony from former Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s aide John Harris to claim President Obama knew that Blagojevich wanted a Cabinet post in exchange for appointing Valerie Jarrett to the Senate. In fact, Harris provided no evidence that Obama was aware of a proposed “quid pro quo”; the allegation is reportedly based on Blagojevich’s unsupported claim that he was “confident” his wishes had been relayed to Obama. Moreover, there’s no evidence that anyone at the White House did anything improper in relation to the Blagojevich scandal

Harris did not say Obama knew of Blagojevich’s wishes; he said Blagojevich thought he did

Harris reportedly testified that Blagojevich told him “he felt confident Obama knew he wanted to swap perks.” The Chicago Sun-Times reported that Harris, a chief of staff to Blagojevich, said in testimony that he “believed Barack Obama knew of Blagojevich’s plot to win himself a presidential Cabinet post in exchange for appointing Valerie Jarrett to the U.S. Senate,” because “the ex-governor told Harris he felt confident Obama knew he wanted to swap perks.” The report does not indicate that Harris presented any evidence that Obama was aware that Blagojevich floated an exchange.

Blagojevich was only “confident” because, according to Blagojevich, he expressed interest in a post to a union leader — not directly to the administration. The Sun-Times also reported that Harris testified that Blagojevich said he felt “confident” Obama knew because according to Blagojevich, he had “made it clear he wanted a presidential cabinet position” to a union leader who in turn “relayed” that request to Jarrett. The article does not indicate Jarrett discussed any quid pro quo with Obama; rather, it says that according to an Obama internal report, Jarrett “did not in her mind link the cabinet post request to her appointment to the Senate seat.” Harris said, according to the article:

“(Blagojevich) feels very confident that the president understands that the governor would be willing to make the appointment of Valerie Jarrett as long as he gets what he’s asked for,” Harris, Blagojevich’s former chief of staff, testified, as he explained the recording, continuing: “The governor gets the cabinet appointment he’s asked for.”

Blagojevich records also show he was upset White House was not offering him a post. The indictment against Blagojevich shows he was upset the administration was “not willing to give me anything except appreciation” if he appointed who he believed was the White House’s preferred candidate. From the indictment:

On November 11, 2008, ROD BLAGOJEVICH talked with JOHN HARRIS about the Senate seat. ROD BLAGOJEVICH suggested starting a 501(c)(4) organization (a non-profit organization that may engage in political activity and lobbying) and getting “his (believed to be the President-elect’s) friend Warren Buffett or some of those guys to help us on something like that.” HARRIS asked, “what, for you?” ROD BLAGOJEVICH replied, “yeah.” Later in the conversation, ROD BLAGOJEVICH stated that if he appoints Senate Candidate 4 to the Senate seat and, thereafter, it appears that ROD BLAGOJEVICH might get impeached, he could “count on [Senate Candidate 4], if things got hot, to give [the Senate seat] up and let me parachute over there.” HARRIS said, “you can count on [Senate Candidate 4] to do that.” Later in the conversation, ROD BLAGOJEVICH said he knows that the President-elect wants Senate Candidate 1 for the Senate seat but “they’re not willing to give me anything except appreciation. Fuck them.”

The audiotape of this phone call was presented as evidence against Blagojevich on June 24.

Right-wing media misrepresent Harris testimony to claim Obama “knew” about “quid pro quo” deal

Fox & Friends repeatedly cropped Harris’ testimony to falsely claim that Harris said Obama “knew” about “quid pro quo” and “went forward” with it. On the June 25 edition of Fox News’ Fox & Friends, co-host Steve Doocy read part of Harris’ statement but edited out the portion where Harris indicated Blagojevich felt “confident” Obama knew. Then, Doocy said: “What they’re saying here is that the president of the United States knew that Blago wanted a job in the Cabinet, and they went forward. It’s that quid pro quo thing that’s gotten a lot of people in trouble.” From Fox & Friends:

BRIAN KILMEADE (co-host): He’s facing 24 charges in connection with the racketeering and scheming to sell the Senate seat once held by one time Senator Barack Obama. I am talking about Governor Blagojevich, and his trial is turning into a soap opera.

DOOCY: Well, it’s very juicy, and yesterday, the chief of staff, former chief of staff to Blago, John Harris, was on the stand and invoked the president’s name and said this — explained what was going on: “The president understands that the governor would be willing to make the appointment of Valerie Jarrett as long as he gets what he’s asked for. The governor gets the Cabinet appointment he’s asked for.”  

What they’re saying here is that the president of the United States knew that Blago wanted a job in the Cabinet, and they went forward. It’s that quid pro quo thing that has gotten a lot of people in trouble.

GRETCHEN CARLSON (co-host): Yeah, this is an irritant to the administration. I mean, do we think that —

DOOCY: It’s an embarrassment.

CARLSON: It’s an embarrassment and an irritant. It’s probably not going to go any further than that, but as long as this continues to be in the headlines, I’m sure that they’re sitting around the White House going oh, great, you know, here we go again with Blago.

DOOCY: Right, it looks like Chicago politics. It’s looking like, oh, let’s get this straight. So they’re doing the horsetrading behind the scenes. That’s just not good.

Doocy: “What about the implication for the White House?” Later in the program, Doocy again read truncated portions of Harris’ testimony and said, “Ooh, quid pro quo?” He also said, “This is embarrassing,” and asked radio host Robin Quivers and Fox News host Geraldo Rivera about the “implication” for the White House. During the segment, the following on-screen graphics aired:

 ff_blago1

  ff_blago2

Drudge: “CHICAGOLAND BOMBSHELL: Obama knew plot to trade Cabinet post.” The Drudge Report linked to the Chicago Sun-Times article under the headline, “CHICAGO BOMBSHELL: Obama knew plot to trade Cabinet post for appointing Jarrett to Senate — testimony…” From the Drudge Report:

drudge_blago

Jim Hoft: “Obama Lied; Knew About Blagojevich Plot.” Jim Hoft wrote in a post titled, “Obama Lied; Knew About Blagojevich Plot,” that “Barack Obama said he was “unaware” that Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich was trying to profit from his ability to name a successor to Obama’s U.S. Senate seat back in December 2008. He lied.” Hoft excerpted from the Sun-Times article as evidence.

Sweetness & Light: “Harris: Obama knew of Blagojevich plot.” The blog Sweetness & Light excerpted from the Sun-Times article and wrote: “[S]uddenly it seems like there are so many holes that need plugging in Mr. Obama’s ship of state. And he has so few fingers.”


Bin Laden Hunter: ‘I Put My Life On The Line’ (VIDEO)

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 26th, 2010 4:48 am by HL

Bin Laden Hunter: ‘I Put My Life On The Line’ (VIDEO)
Gary Faulkner, who was arrested this month in Pakistan while searching for Osama bin Laden, gave an interview to CNN yesterday after arriving back in the U.S.



Osama bin LadenUnited StatesPakistanGary FaulknerCNN

Anon. Gore Friend To WaPo: Portland Massage Occurred ‘Without Incident’
A “source friendly with the Gores” tells the Washington Post that a 2006 massage in Portland, Oregon, that is the subject of sexual assault allegations against Al Gore occurred “without incident.”


algoreWashington PostPortland OregonSexual assaultOregon

L.A. Mayor Accepted At Least $50K In Free Tickets: Reports
Reports in the L.A. Times and the L.A. Weekly show that Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has accepted free tickets to around 80 events over the past five years, worth an estimated $50,000 at least.



Los AngelesAntonio VillaraigosaMayor of Los Angeles CaliforniaUnited StatesLos Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa


Meet oilcane

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 26th, 2010 4:45 am by HL

Meet oilcane
Author’s note: I am sure many of you have heard about the possibility of a methane gas explosion under the ruptured well in the Gulf. That is a possibility. This is almost a certainty… Excerpt: An overly active hurricane season mixed with oil in the Gulf of Mexico may make bad news even worse for residents throughout […]


Wall Street ‘Reform’ in a Nutshell: The Politicians Lied, Media Applauded, and We Americans Will Suffer

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 26th, 2010 4:44 am by HL

Wall Street ‘Reform’ in a Nutshell: The Politicians Lied, Media Applauded, and We Americans Will Suffer
The same Washington spinsters who have driven our country into the ground seemed to be out in full force proclaiming an empty ‘victory.’

The same Washington spinsters who have driven our country into the ground seemed to be out in full force proclaiming an empty 'victory.'

Why Do Murderers Get Mailbags Full of Love Letters and Marriage Proposals?
Murder suspect Joran van der Sloot has been bragging about receiving a deluge of attention from women since confessing to the murder of Stephany Flores. What gives?

Murder suspect Joran van der Sloot has been bragging about receiving a deluge of attention from women since confessing to the murder of Stephany Flores. What gives?

15,000 Progressive Activists in Detroit: Why No Media or Respect?
Why the United States Social Forum deserves to have a lot more influence than the negative agenda of the Tea Party crowd.

Why the United States Social Forum deserves to have a lot more influence than the negative agenda of the Tea Party crowd.

iPads Are Billed as a Green Gadget, But There’s a Not-So-Eco Catch
The iPad may be billed as the greenest-of-the-green-tech gadgets but is it really eco-friendly?

The iPad may be billed as the greenest-of-the-green-tech gadgets but is it really eco-friendly?

Anyone Noticed That We’re Turning into a Nation of Blood-Sucking Vampires?
Taking a breather from our Gulf Coast miasma in order to focus on an even ghastlier blight of cultural crude washing up on American shores.

Taking a breather from our Gulf Coast miasma in order to focus on an even ghastlier blight of cultural crude washing up on American shores.


Weigelgate: Jeff Goldberg’s Jealousy

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 26th, 2010 4:42 am by HL

Weigelgate: Jeff Goldberg’s Jealousy
I understand that the Dave Weigel story is pretty much only relevant here in the “village.” I doubt interest in the story even crosses the district line. Nonetheless, it is significant because of what it says about the establishment media….


Washington PostEzra KleinDave WeigelMiddle EastConservatism

Why China’s Currency Announcement is Hokum
The stock market is euphoric over China’s apparent decision to allow its currency to rise against the dollar. Watch your wallets. China isn’t really changing anything. It’s only doing the minimum to prevent Congress from listing China as a currency…


ChinaUnited StatesCurrencyAsiaStock market


The LiberalOasis Radio Show: Gettin’ Stuff Done Edition

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 26th, 2010 4:41 am by HL

The LiberalOasis Radio Show: Gettin’ Stuff Done Edition

The latest LiberalOasis Radio Show podcast is up, with Traci Olsen and myself discussing the final Wall St. reform bill, the Senate jobs filibuster, the possibility of a carbon cap bill this summer, the McChrystal resignation, and, as usual, Twilight.

You can download the podcast at these links: (iTunes / XML feed / MP3).