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Archive for November 1st, 2010

Early Morning Swim

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on November 1st, 2010 4:47 am by HL

Early Morning Swim


Prison-Industrial Complex Helped Write and Pass SB 1070

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on November 1st, 2010 4:46 am by HL

Prison-Industrial Complex Helped Write and Pass SB 1070
An investigation by National Public Radio has found that prison companies that were set to make significant gains from the criminalization of immigrants helped write and pass Arizona’s controversial law SB 1070. The investigation claims that campaign finance reports, lobbying documents and corporate records show “a quiet, behind-the-scenes effort to help draft and pass Arizona Senate Bill 1070 by an industry that stands to benefit from it: the private prison industry.” Check out the NPR story here. The Orange County Register: Prison companies helped draft and pass controversial Arizona’s immigration law SB1070, a National Public Radio investigation shows. The law is currently tied up in the courts after a judge blocked some of the most contentious provisions of the bill from taking effect. It would allow police to ask people to prove they are in the country legally during a lawful stop. If the law is upheld, it could mean a windfall for the prison industry, according to a National Public Radio investigation. Read more

SB 1070 sign

An investigation by National Public Radio has found that prison companies that were set to make significant gains from the criminalization of immigrants helped write and pass Arizona’s controversial law SB 1070.

The investigation claims that campaign finance reports, lobbying documents and corporate records show “a quiet, behind-the-scenes effort to help draft and pass Arizona Senate Bill 1070 by an industry that stands to benefit from it: the private prison industry.” Check out the NPR story here.

The Orange County Register:

Prison companies helped draft and pass controversial Arizona’s immigration law SB1070, a National Public Radio investigation shows.

The law is currently tied up in the courts after a judge blocked some of the most contentious provisions of the bill from taking effect. It would allow police to ask people to prove they are in the country legally during a lawful stop.

If the law is upheld, it could mean a windfall for the prison industry, according to a National Public Radio investigation.

Read more

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AR-Sen: 55% Boozman (R), 36% Lincoln (D) (Rasmussen 10/28)

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on November 1st, 2010 4:45 am by HL

AR-Sen: 55% Boozman (R), 36% Lincoln (D) (Rasmussen 10/28)
Rasmussen 10/28/10; 500 likely voters, 4.5% margin of error Mode: Automated phone (Rasmussen release) Arkansas 2010 Senate 55% Boozman (R), 36% Lincoln (D) (chart) Jump…

Marjorie Cohn: Let’s Rally to Restore Peace
In their Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert effectively demonstrated how the media hypes fear. They brought out Kareem Abdul…

Hollywood GOP Closes Its Wallets To Whitman, Fiorina
If Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina end up beating the odds on Tuesday, you can bet Hollywood won’t make their thank-you lists. The two Republican…


Palin’s economic analysis relies on faulty claims

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on November 1st, 2010 4:44 am by HL

Palin’s economic analysis relies on faulty claims

Sarah Palin criticized the Obama administration over the “jobless recovery,” saying the stimulus “did not work.” But numerous independent and private analysts have agreed that the stimulus significantly raised employment.

Palin claims stimulus “did not work”

Palin: “We know that the stimulus, the nearly trillion dollars that were spent that just created more debt, did not work.” On the October 31 edition of Fox Broadcasting Co.’s Fox News Sunday, Palin said: “I believe things are getting worse. We have still this jobless recovery. We know that the stimulus, the nearly trillion dollars that were spent that just created more debt, did not work. And yet [President Obama] still talks about more bailouts, more stimulus.”

Independent and private analysts: Stimulus significantly raised employment

CEA: ARRA raised employment “by between 2.5 and 3.6 million.” In its fourth quarterly report on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009, the White House’s Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) stated that “as of the second quarter of 2010, the ARRA has raised employment relative to what it otherwise would have been by between 2.5 and 3.6 million. These estimates are broadly consistent with the direct recipient reporting data available for 2010:Q1.”

Independent analysts agree that recovery act significantly raised employment. In its quarterly report, the CEA included figures from independent analyses that also credited the recovery act with increasing employment:

CBO estimates stimulus increased employment by up to 3.3 million jobs. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated in August that as of the second quarter of 2010, the stimulus “[i]ncreased the number of people employed by between 1.4 million and 3.3 million.”


Paladino Sends Out Mailer Marked ‘Important Tax Information’

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on November 1st, 2010 4:43 am by HL

Paladino Sends Out Mailer Marked ‘Important Tax Information’
Via a New York State reader, Republican gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino is sending out campaign mailers marked as “Important Tax Information” in official-looking envelopes.

AP: DADT Survey Shows Most Troops Don’t Care If Fellow Troops Are Gay
The AP takes a look at some of the results of a Pentagon survey on servicemembers’ views about gays in the military:


Re(publicans): Your Brains

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on November 1st, 2010 4:40 am by HL

Re(publicans): Your Brains
Embedded video never seems to work here. Feel free to share this widely.  I made it, it will probably come down shortly after Tuesday. YouTube – Re(publicans): Your Brains.


Miller Leads Three-Way Race in Alaska

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on November 1st, 2010 4:39 am by HL

Miller Leads Three-Way Race in Alaska
Apparently, predictions of Joe Miller’s (R) collapse in Alaska’s U.S. Senate race are premature: A new Public Policy Polling survey finds Miller still leading the race with 37%, followed by Scott McAdams (D) at 30% and Lisa Murkowski at 30%.

Key finding: “Miller is winning despite having the worst personal favorability numbers of the three candidates. Only 36% have a positive opinion of him while 59% view him in a negative light. McAdams is by far the most popular with 50% rating him favorably to only 30% with an unfavorable one. Voters aren’t very enamored with Murkowski either, giving her a 37/53 approval rating.”

Buck Has Thin Lead in Colorado
A new Public Policy Polling survey in Colorado shows a very tight race with Ken Buck (R) just edging Sen. Michael Bennet (D), 49% to 48%.

Interesting: “One thing interesting to note within the results is that with respondents who say they’ve already voted — accounting for 66% of the sample- Bennet is actually ahead by a 52-46 margin. Buck leads 55-41 with those who say they have not yet cast their ballots. Bennet should probably be rooting for ugly weather on election day, any little thing could help in such a close race if he already has a lead in the bank.”

Rossi Leads in Washington
A new Public Policy Polling survey in Washington finds Dino Rossi (R) leading Patty Murray (D) by two points, 50% to 48%.

Key finding: “Neither candidate has much in the way of support across party lines- Rossi’s winning 93% of Republicans and Murray’s winning 91% of Democrats. That means independents, as they are in so many races across the country, are making the difference for the GOP here. Rossi leads Murray with them by a 54-42 margin.”


Response to Avishai: Round III

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on November 1st, 2010 4:38 am by HL

Response to Avishai: Round III
Bernard Avishai covers a great deal of ground of his last response. Fortunately it can be boiled down to two simple misunderstandings: 1) a government debt up in a period of high unemployment does not create a burden for the…


November for New START?
When Congress returns to work after the November 2nd elections, it is imperative that it consider and ratify the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START). To do otherwise would jeopardize the possibility of progress on a wide range of…


Cornyn Refuses To Denounce Vitter?s Race-Baiting Anti-Immigrant Campaign Ad

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on November 1st, 2010 4:37 am by HL

Cornyn Refuses To Denounce Vitter?s Race-Baiting Anti-Immigrant Campaign Ad
This month, Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) began airing a race-baiting anti-immigrant campaign ad that the local Hispanic Chamber of Commerce found to be “totally abhorrent and shocking.” The ad targets the immigration stance of Rep. Charlie Melancon (D-LA), Vitter’s opponent: the narrator says “Thanks to him, we may as well put out a welcome sign […]

This month, Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) began airing a race-baiting anti-immigrant campaign ad that the local Hispanic Chamber of Commerce found to be “totally abhorrent and shocking.” The ad targets the immigration stance of Rep. Charlie Melancon (D-LA), Vitter’s opponent: the narrator says “Thanks to him, we may as well put out a welcome sign for illegal aliens,” as footage of dirty, goofy-looking Latino men slipping through a hole in a fence displaying a neon welcome sign runs across the screen. The men step into a limo with a giant government check they defiantly hang out the window as they zoom away. “I’m going to use the ‘R’ word and say racist,” said the spokeswoman for the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. “We are saying you owe us an apology, we are offended, we expect an immediate apology and we expect this ad to be yanked from the airwaves immediately,” she continued.

Not only did Vitter continue to run the ad, but he defended it during a debate last week, asking “Is it a stereotype that folks coming across the border — that is a problem and they look like that? Dennis that is a fact, that is not a stereotype! Let’s get our heads out of the sand!” This morning on ABC’s This Week with Christiane Amanpour, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), the head of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, joined Vitter in defending the ad. Amanpour repeatedly invited Cornyn to denounce the ad’s racial overtones, which he refused to do, saying only it was “appropriate” to raise the issue of illegal immigration:

AMANPOUR: Some people have called that [ad] racist. I want to know, do you think it’s appropriate to finger Hispanics in that way? Do you think it’s appropriate?

CORNYN: I wish we had time to show Melancon’s ads against Vitter. They’re pretty tough.

AMANPOUR: But let me just ask about this particular ad —

CORNYN: I think border security is a federal responsibility and one that the federal government has simply failed to deal with in an appropriate way. And I think it’s appropriate to raise that issue in the campaign.

AMANPOUR: But do you think it’s appropriate in this way? I mean you’re from Texas. You have a big Hispanic group there. Do you think it’s appropriate? Would you have done that?

CORNYN: I didn’t write the ad.

AMANPOUR: Would you have done it?

CORNYN: I think calling attention to illegal immigration is — for example, this last year, Christiane, 45,000 people immigrated to the United States from countries other than Mexico, including counting like Yemen where this bomb emanated from. It’s a national security issue.

Watch it:

Last year, Cornyn hit back against race-based attacks on then-Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor, saying that Newt Gingrich’s allegations that Sotomayor was prejudiced against non-Hispanics were “terrible,” and “not the kind of tone any of us want to set.” By refusing to denounce Vitter’s ad, and even suggesting it’s “appropriate,” Cornyn has apparently revised his opinion of what is an appropriate tone.

Broder: ?As We Accelerate Preparations For War [With Iran], The Economy Will Improve?
Observing the continuing economic crisis, Washington Post columnist David Broder asks “Can Obama harness the forces that might spur new growth?” The answer is obvious, but its implications are frightening. War and peace influence the economy. Look back at FDR and the Great Depression. What finally resolved that economic crisis? World War II. Here is […]

Observing the continuing economic crisis, Washington Post columnist David Broder asks “Can Obama harness the forces that might spur new growth?”

The answer is obvious, but its implications are frightening. War and peace influence the economy.

Look back at FDR and the Great Depression. What finally resolved that economic crisis? World War II.

Here is where Obama is likely to prevail. With strong Republican support in Congress for challenging Iran’s ambition to become a nuclear power, he can spend much of 2011 and 2012 orchestrating a showdown with the mullahs. This will help him politically because the opposition party will be urging him on. And as tensions rise and we accelerate preparations for war, the economy will improve.

Dean Baker corrects Broder on the basic economics, noting that “War affects the economy the same way that other government spending affects the economy”:

If spending on war can provide jobs and lift the economy then so can spending on roads, weatherizing homes, or educating our kids. Yes, that’s right, all the forms of stimulus spending that Broder derided so much because they add to the deficit will increase GDP and generate jobs just like the war that Broder is advocating (which will also add to the deficit).

Leaving aside the ridiculous idea that we can just ramp up the war machine, whip America into an anti-Iran frenzy and then shut it all down once the economy’s back on track, there’s the question of basic human decency. Especially in light of what has just occurred in Iraq, what kind of moral degenerate seriously suggests we get ready to do it again in neighboring Iran, just as a way to spur job growth?

The kind who writes a regular column in the Washington Post, apparently.


Voter unrest echoes that of 1994, poll shows

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on November 1st, 2010 4:36 am by HL

Voter unrest echoes that of 1994, poll shows
Voters across the country are deeply unhappy with the performance of the Democratic Congress and as dissatisfied with how Washington works as they were in1994, when Republicans took control of both chambers, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.