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Archive for October 20th, 2010

Mayor Quits After Food Fight

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on October 20th, 2010 4:49 am by HL

Mayor Quits After Food Fight
San Gabriel, Calif., Mayor Albert Huang has announced his resignation four days after being arrested over a late-night altercation with a woman outside the New Taste Dumpling House restaurant. A 33-year-old woman threw a plate of dumplings on the mayor at around 1 a.m. and he responded by throwing vinegar at her, a restaurant owner told the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.



Early Morning Swim: Rachel Maddow Explains Why There Are No “Macaca Moments” This Election Season

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on October 20th, 2010 4:48 am by HL

Early Morning Swim: Rachel Maddow Explains Why There Are No “Macaca Moments” This Election Season
And guess what? Mr. Macaca is back.

And guess what? Mr. Macaca is back.

Former Virginia Sen. George Allen appears to be preparing for an attempt at a 2012 Senate comeback.

The Republican narrowly lost his Senate seat to Democrat Jim Webb in 2006 after a video clip of Allen calling an opposition staffer “Macaca” went viral online. […]

“He’s been telling people privately for a couple weeks that he’s in,” an unnamed source told Politico. “It definitely seems like he’s running.”

Why not? His Confederate flag and “Macaca” slur seem almost quaint now in the wake of Teabaggery.

Look into your future — eh, probably not
Imagine if Americans could protests enough to see that an actual fair result comes the Catfood Commission?

Protesters in Marseille, October 16 via marcovdz at flickr.com

If the Catfood Commission really does plan on raising the retirement age beyond 65, is it possible we can import some new LaFayettes from France?

Demonstrators have taken to the streets of nearly 250 cities and towns across France today expressing their outrage over a government plan to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62.

The masses in France have figured out that the Ponzi Scheme is actually the opposite of what the elites are selling them:

Opinion polls show a majority of French resent the plan to raise the minimum and full retirement ages by two years to 62 and 67 respectively, and feel they are being punished unfairly for a failure in France’s cherished social security system.

Funny how just as in the good Ol’ U.S. of A., the wealthy are pushing this charge so they can get even wealthier, but unlike here, the people are having none of it.

Why can’t they just shut up and watch ‘Dancing with the Stars’, like in America and have some franco-David Brooks say it proves how awesome the nation is for quietly allowing itself to be pillaged (seventy years ago the French David Brooks would have been writing Pierre Laval’s press releases)?

Because that isn’t happening...

With most French citizens supporting the strikes, Sarkozy may be paying the highest price…A poll taken Oct. 6 and 7 shows Sarkozy’s approval rating at just 31 percent, the lowest since his election in 2007.

Late Late Night FDL: Baby I Need Your Lovin’
The Four TopsBaby I Need Your Lovin’, 1965.

The Four TopsBaby I Need Your Lovin’, 1965.

What’s on your mind?


Audit Time for Bell

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on October 20th, 2010 4:47 am by HL

Audit Time for Bell
The city of Bell, Calif., drew quite a bit of unwanted attention to itself last summer with the revelation that several top officials were pocketing ridiculously high salaries at the expense of its citizens. Now it’s looking like payback time, as the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors is on the case.  —KA Los Angeles Times: The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday directed county auditors to conduct a comprehensive review of Bell’s finances to determine whether the scandal-plagued city is solvent. […] The board directed the county auditor-controller and chief executive officer to review the city’s current cash position, contracts and outstanding debts, including authorized and issued bonds. The auditors are expected to report back in 30 days, said Auditor-Controller Wendy Watanabe. The financial review, expected to cost $100,000, will be paid for by the county. Read more

The city of Bell, Calif., drew quite a bit of unwanted attention to itself last summer with the revelation that several top officials were pocketing ridiculously high salaries at the expense of its citizens. Now it’s looking like payback time, as the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors is on the case.? —KA

Los Angeles Times:

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday directed county auditors to conduct a comprehensive review of Bell’s finances to determine whether the scandal-plagued city is solvent.

[…] The board directed the county auditor-controller and chief executive officer to review the city’s current cash position, contracts and outstanding debts, including authorized and issued bonds. The auditors are expected to report back in 30 days, said Auditor-Controller Wendy Watanabe. The financial review, expected to cost $100,000, will be paid for by the county.

Read more

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Obama Hires a Hustler
Behind the wonderfully engaging smile of this president there is the increasingly disturbing suggestion of a cynical power-grabbing politician whose swift rise in power reflects less the earnestness of his message and far more the skills of a traditional political hack.

By Robert Scheer

Behind the wonderfully engaging smile of this president there is the increasingly disturbing suggestion of a cynical power-grabbing politician whose swift rise in power reflects less the earnestness of his message and far more the skills of a traditional political hack.


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Illinois Senate Candidates Debate DREAM Act, Campaign Finance Reform And Voter Integrity Squads (VIDEO)

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on October 20th, 2010 4:46 am by HL

Illinois Senate Candidates Debate DREAM Act, Campaign Finance Reform And Voter Integrity Squads (VIDEO)
Illinois’ Senate candidates were grilled on their verbal missteps, flip-flops and opinions on controversial topics in Tuesday night’s debate in Chicago. Republican Mark Kirk and…

Stimulus Spending Looms Large In Midterm Contests
DENVER — A photo of President Barack Obama hangs on the wall in CoraFaye’s Cafe, a short walk from the Denver museum where Obama signed…

DNC, On Potentially Historic Fundraising Pace, Launches New Ad Attacking Anonymous GOP Funders
The Democratic National Committee announced on Wednesday that it had raised a potentially historic amount of money (all of it donor-disclosed) during the first half…


“Party on!” Fox relentlessly promotes Tea Party Express tour

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on October 20th, 2010 4:45 am by HL

“Party on!” Fox relentlessly promotes Tea Party Express tour

Despite Rupert Murdoch’s statement that he doesn’t think Fox “should be supporting the tea party,” Fox News and Fox Business have relentlessly promoted the Tea Party Express in recent days, devoting numerous segments to the launch of its latest tour as well as hosting its chairman for softball interviews.

Murdoch: Fox News should not be “supporting the tea party”

Murdoch: “I don’t think we should be supporting the Tea Party or any other party.” Asked by Media Matters about Fox News’ role in promoting the tea party movement, News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch stated: “I don’t think we should be supporting the tea party or any other party.”

Yet Fox is relentlessly promoting latest Tea Party Express tour

Cameron promoted Tea Party Express tour launch in Reno, NV. On the October 18 edition of America’s Newsroom, correspondent Carl Cameron stated: “The Tea Party Express is going to launch a tour here today, and it has been the most potent, most visible voice within the tea party movement across the country.” He added that “[t]his will be their fourth and final tour of the year. There have been three so far; they’ve spent millions of dollars around the country.” Cameron later stated: “Ultimately, and I love this … they end in Concord, New Hampshire — just coincidentally my home state, but more importantly the home of the first-in-the-nation presidential primary.” Fox also aired a map of the Tea Party Express tour route:

fox_tpemap

Cameron hosted Tea Party Express chairman to promote tour. On the October 18 edition of Happening Now, co-host Jon Scott noted that “the Tea Party Express is kicking off a two-week national bus tour” and introduced Cameron by saying, “Carl, the tea party helped Sharron Angle get nominated there in Nevada. Can they help her win?” Cameron replied, “They’re certainly going to try. The Tea Party Express’ fourth and final bus tour of 2010 kicks off here from Reno, in just a matter of a couple of hours.” Cameron noted the tour’s schedule and then introduced Tea Party Express chairman Amy Kremer and allowed her to give a “20-second synopsis for TV of what the Express accomplished in the primaries.” After allowing Kremer to promote the Tea Party Express, Cameron summarized her comments as “some very, very professional, very, very astute rhetoric.”

Fox Business’ McDowell: “Tea party voters have a chance to jump on the bandwagon as the Tea Party Express weaves its way across the U.S.” On October 18, Fox Business also promoted the kickoff of the Tea Party Express tour. Fox Business co-host Dagen McDowell introduced the tour by stating: “Tea party voters have a chance to jump on the bandwagon as the Tea Party Express weaves its way across the U.S.” Fox Business also aired a map of the Tea Party Express tour route with text stating that Fox News contributor Sarah Palin “helped launch tea party bus rally in Reno, NV”:

fnc-20101018-tpe

Baier: “The Tea Party Express is coming to a parking lot near you.” On the October 18 edition of Special Report, host Bret Baier stated that “the Tea Party Express is coming to a parking lot near you.” In a subsequent report, Cameron highlighted Fox News contributor Sarah Palin’s speech at the Tea Party Express rally in Reno earlier that day, calling her “the face of the Tea Party Express.” Cameron also highlighted the upcoming stops on the Tea Party Express tour.

Van Susteren hosted Palin to promote Tea Party Express. On the October 18 edition of On the Record, host Greta Van Susteren played a clip of Palin’s speech at the Tea Party Express rally in Reno and aired a pre-recorded interview with Palin directly afterward. During the interview, conducted by correspondent Griff Jenkins, Palin promoted the “tea party American message of smaller, smarter government.” Jenkins asked Palin if she thought that the tea party movement “was going to get this big, that this movement was going to have the impact that it’s had.” Palin claimed that the movement had been “slandered” and “lied about” by the “mainstream media.”

Fox & Friends hosts Kremer to explain “the mission of this tour.” On October 19, Fox & Friends hosted Kremer to promote the launch of the Tea Party Express tour. During the interview, co-host Gretchen Carlson asked Kremer, “What is the mission of this tour?” and asked Kremer to respond to an NAACP report that, in Carlson’s words, “says that people in tea parties are extremists and racists.” Kremer called the NAACP report “ridiculous” and “political posturing.” During the segment, onscreen text read, “Party on! Tea Party Express hits the road”:

fox_partyon

Fox & Friends repeatedly promoted Palin “lead[ing]” Tea Party Express. On October 19, Fox & Friends repeatedly promoted Palin’s involvement with the Tea Party Express, airing a clip of Palin’s On the Record interview with onscreen text stating, “Palin leads Tea Party Express.” Fox & Friends also repeatedly aired clips of Palin’s Tea Party Express speech, and co-host Steve Doocy stated that Palin “had the soundbite of the day yesterday … she said, quote, ‘We can see 2012 from our houses.’ ” From Fox & Friends:

palinleadstpe

Tea Party Express proposed to “boost” PAC through Fox 

Consultant proposed the Express saying it would “give a boost to our PAC,” highlighted possible friendly coverage from “Fox commentators.” The Tea Party Express is a project of the Our Country Deserves Better Committee, an anti-Democratic PAC. In the original memo proposing the creation of the Tea Party Express, a consultant with Russo Marsh, Joe Wierzbicki, wrote that it could “give a boost to our PAC and position us as a growing force/leading force as the 2010 elections come into focus.” Wierzbicki also wrote that the effort could get “some mentions and possibly even promotion from conservative/pro-tea party bloggers, talk radio hosts, Fox News commentators, etc…” 

Tea Party Express used Fox Nation’s promotion of its video in a July 2009 fundraising email. From a July 29, 2009, email sent from the Our Country Deserves Better PAC:

teapartyexpress

Tea Party Express praised “great television news coverage” from Fox News. In a November 15, 2009, email to supporters, the Tea Party Express praised “some of the great television news coverage this effort has received. Media coverage is an important aspect of the Tea Party Express tours – it’s all about getting our message out to millions of Americans – to inform them that there is an active political resistance against the socialist agenda of Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid.”  

The Tea Party Express’ examples of “great television news coverage” included links to numerous segments about its efforts on Fox News:  

tpeemail1

Fox heavily promoted previous three Tea Party Express tours

Fox Nation asked: “Will you join the Tea Party Express?” On July 28, 2009 Fox Nation posted a promotional ad for the Tea Party Express using the headline, “Will You Join the Tea Party Express?” From The Fox Nation:

foxnation-20090728

Fox & Friends tells viewers “how you can join” Tea Party Express. During its August 19, 2009, broadcastFox & Friends hosted then Tea Party Express organizer and OCDB vice chairman Mark Williams, who has said Obama lacks a valid birth certificate and has compared “Obama’s death panels” to Nazi experiments. During the segment, Fox News helped viewers find out “how you can join” the tour by noting the dates and locations of 22 upcoming stops.

Fox News anchor Bream: “We want to let folks know” Tea Party schedule so “they can be a part” of events. The August 23, 2009, edition of America’s News HQ hosted Williams to promote the tour. During the segment, host Shannon Bream said of the tour’s schedule:

BREAM: You do have a bit of a cohesive, at least organized schedule — we want to let folks know you’re going to be making –

WILLIAMS: Yes.

BREAM: — 34, 35 stops, I believe it is, all across the country, so if they want to come out and take part, they certainly can be a part of what you’re doing, and, you know, this has definitely struck a chord with people.

Jenkins promotes upcoming Fox coverage on Greta. On the August 25, 2009, edition of On the Record, Jenkins promoted Fox News’ coverage of the Tea Party Express, stating that “a Tea Party Express, which we will cover here, begins Friday in California, making its way all the way to Washington.”

Fox Business’ Cavuto hosts Williams to promote tea parties. During the August 27, 2009, edition of Fox Business’ Cavuto, host Neil Cavuto promoted the tour and interviewed Williams. During the segment, Fox Business ran a graphic map of the tour’s path through the country and posted the tour’s website address.

” ‘Hannity’ Hops the Tea Party Express!” In an August 27, 2009 post on Sean Hannity’s FoxNews.com blog, a producer wrote that Hannity “will be along for the ride!” adding: “Click here for more on the tour and to find the tea party nearest you.” From the post, titled, ” ‘Hannity’ Hops the Tea Party Express!” (emphasis in original):

Starting tomorrow, the Tea Party Express will begin its 16-day, 35-city tour across the nation, rallying Americans to stand up against out-of-control government spending… and ‘Hannity’ will be along for the ride!

With video camera in hand, our own Griff Jenkins will be catching all the action on the road and filing reports for The Great American Blog as the Express makes its way from Sacramento, CA to the Taxpayer March on Washington, D.C. Sept. 12!

Click here for more on the tour and to find the tea party nearest you.

And make sure to check back starting tomorrow to follow Griff on the road!

Hannity: Griff Jenkins will “stop every single place.” On the August 27, 2009 edition of Fox News’ Hannity, Hannity said:

HANNITY: And now, starting this weekend, by the way, the Tea Party Express tour kicks off, where Americans from all over the country are going to hit the streets to voice their grievances over government spending and, of course, universal government health care. And our own Griff Jenkins is going to stop every single place, and he’s starting this weekend and he’s going to be checking in and giving us an update and blogging with the latest video on our Great, Great American Blog, and we’ll also be checking in with him in our — all throughout the next week, so that’s coming up.

Fox News reported live from Tea Party Express kickoff. On August 28, 2009, Fox News dispatched Jenkins and reporter William La Jeunesse to the Tea Party Express kickoff in Sacramento. Between 8 a.m. and noon ET, La Jeunesse filed two live reports for Fox News and one for Fox Business.

La Jeunesse: “Hopefully Washington will listen to their concerns.” During the August 28, 2009, edition of Fox & Friends, La Jeunesse reported live from Sacramento on the kickoff of the Tea Party Express. At the conclusion of his report, La Jeunesse said of the tour’s concerns: “[T]hey believe, collectively, that they at least have a voice, and hopefully Washington will listen to their concerns.”

La Jeunesse interviewed Williams. During the August 28, 2009, edition of America’s Newsroom, La Jeunesse interviewed Williams. La Jeunesse asked Williams, “critics like Speaker Pelosi say this is Astroturf, that basically Republican operatives like yourself are organizing this with one goal in mind, to unseat Democrats.” Williams responded:

WILLIAMS: Well, the Republican Party right now is in a coma. I wish they were helping. I wish they had the capability to help with something like this. No, this is democracy. These are working stiff, taxpaying citizens, who are being abused horribly by their government. You will see that here today in Sacramento where the emphasis will be on the Central Valley and water rights and such, so you’ll be seeing guys taking breaks from their fields to come here.

Fox Nation: “Will You Join the Tea Party Express II?” On October 13, 2009, the Fox Nation promoted the tea Party Express II with two separate posts. From the Fox Nation homepage:

foxnation-20091013-tpe2

Fox & Friends Sunday hosted Williams to promote the “Bigger & Better” Tea Party Express II. On the October 25 edition of Fox News’ Fox & Friends Sunday, co-host Dave Briggs described the Tea Party Express by saying that “the bus tour that took the country by storm is back by popular demand.” The show hosted Williams and the composer of the Tea Party’s anthem Lloyd Marcus to promote the second Tea Party Express tour. The on-screen text during the segment highlighted the new tour as “Bigger & Better.”

Doocy highlights “major grassroots support” of the Tea Party Express II tour. On the November 12 edition of Fox & Friends, Mark Williams appeared on the show to discuss the conclusion of the Tea Party Express II tour. Carlson noted that the tour “focused on small town U.S.A.,” while Doocy lauded the tour for its “major grassroots support.”

“The Tea Party Express Returns March 27.” A February 18 Fox Nation post linked directly to the website for the Tea Party Express III:

teapartyexpress

Fox provides unending coverage of Tea Party Express III kick-off rally. Fox News provided all-day coverage of the March 27 kickoff rally for the Tea Party Express III bus tour, with the network’s hosts and on-site reporter Casey Stegall frequently praising the rally’s participants. For example, Fox & Friends Saturday, co-host Clayton Morris previewed the network’s coverage by saying it was a “huge day for the tea party… they’re firing up, filling up the tanks with gas, 23 states getting ready to rumble,” Neil Cavuto said of the activists, “God bless these folks,” and Stegall said that there is “a real energy that you feel from the people who are out here.”

Fox News asks if rally is “Conservative Woodstock.” Shannon Bream opened the noon ET hour of America’s News HQ by stating of the Tea Party Express’ March 27 rally, “Organizers are hoping it will be a conservative Woodstock as thousands of tea party activists converge on Harry Reid’s small town of Searchlight, Nevada.” Bream also aired the following graphic:

conservativewoodstock

Fox promotes, lauds “rock star” Palin’s keynote address. Palin was the event’s keynote speaker. After Fox’s anchors repeatedly promoted her speech, Fox News aired it live in its entirety. Stegall subsequently lauded the address, calling Palin “the rock star here” and saying that Palin was “no doubt very, very big, she was the big draw of this event.”

Special Report declares Tea Party Express protest the “21st century version” of the Boston Tea Party. On the April 14 edition of Special Report, Baier led in to a report on the Tea Party Express’s rally in Boston by claiming that the groups’ event was the “21st century version” of the Boston Tea Party.


DOJ Files Brief In Favor Of Tenn. Mosque

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on October 20th, 2010 4:44 am by HL

DOJ Files Brief In Favor Of Tenn. Mosque
The Department of Justice today filed an amicus brief in a lawsuit in Murfreesboro, Tenn., where opponents of a new mosque are trying to stop its construction. In the brief, the DOJ declares that Islam is a religion and therefore entitled to freedom of expression.


Republican Lawyers Group Calls Their Election Education Efforts ‘Unprecedented’
The Republican National Lawyers Association’s “election education efforts this year have been unprecedented,” according to a leader of the RNLA, which has run programs in the state of Illinois which coincided with GOP Senate candidate Mark Kirk’s voter “integrity program.”

Accused Muslim Cabbie Slasher To Be Released On $500K Bail
Michael Enright, the aspiring filmmaker charged with slashing a New York City cab driver back in August because he was a Muslim, will be released on $500,000 bail.


Ye Olde Scribe’s Incredible, Inedible, Quote Machine

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on October 20th, 2010 4:41 am by HL

Ye Olde Scribe’s Incredible, Inedible, Quote Machine
“Monkey see, Ms. Monkey Do Dos… again” “Evolution should be decided on the local community.” – The Masturbating Witch, Link Scribe responds: “GREAT idea! Just how far does the teabagger community propose to go back? Sloth? Paramecium? Protoplasmic goo goo?


Sestak Grabs Lead in Pennsylvania

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on October 20th, 2010 4:40 am by HL

Sestak Grabs Lead in Pennsylvania
A new Muhlenberg College/Allentown Morning Call poll in Pennsylvania released shows Rep. Joe Sestak (D) leading Pat Toomey (R) for U.S. Senate, 44% to 41%, with 15% still undecided.

“It wouldn’t be the first time Sestak surged with the finish line in sight. In two previous elections, when political pundits had counted him out, Sestak came from behind with just weeks to go and emerged victorious.”

A PPP survey yesterday also found Sestak taking the lead.

Democrats Still Lead in California
A new SurveyUSA poll in California finds Sen. Barbara Boxer (D) leading challenger Carly Fiorina (R) by two points, 46% to 44%.

Interesting finding: Boxer nominally trails Fiorina among likely voters interviewed on their home telephones, but, among voters who do not have a home telephone and who were interviewed on their cellphone, Boxer leads 2:1.

In the race for governor, Jerry Brown (D) leads Meg Whitman (R) by seven points, 47% to 40%.


US Considering Treaty on Rights of Indigenous Peoples

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on October 20th, 2010 4:39 am by HL

US Considering Treaty on Rights of Indigenous Peoples
Many see the legally non-binding treaty as a way to help end discrimination and the exploitation of indigenous land without informed prior consent.

Many see the legally non-binding treaty as a way to help end discrimination and the exploitation of indigenous land without informed prior consent.

Is Atheism a Belief?
One of the most common accusations aimed at atheists is that atheism is an article of faith, a belief just like religion.

One of the most common accusations aimed at atheists is that atheism is an article of faith, a belief just like religion.

"Kicked, Set on fire, Beaten to Death": Shocking Rise of Violence Against America’s Homeless
2009 was the deadliest year for hate crimes committed against homeless people.

2009 was the deadliest year for hate crimes committed against homeless people.


Rare Earth Materials and China: Housing Bubble Deniers Get Another One Wrong

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on October 20th, 2010 4:38 am by HL

Rare Earth Materials and China: Housing Bubble Deniers Get Another One Wrong
It seems the main qualification for being a top economic policy maker is being wrong about economic policy. It certainly is the only trait that this group has had in common over the last three decades. The latest big item…

Calling All Mayors: Congress Failed, But You Can Lead On Innovations For New Veterans
Lately, I’ve had a lot of conversations with elected officials urging them to put points on the board for new veterans and deliver real results to our community. I’ve heard a lot of talk, a lot of promises and a…