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Archive for April 17th, 2011

Sunday Talking Heads: April 17, 2011

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on April 17th, 2011 4:35 am by HL

Sunday Talking Heads: April 17, 2011
April showers… Happy Morning! Here are the talk show listings. Come by for Book Salon, Jerusalem, Jerusalem. Movie Night Monday is The Lazaruz Effect. And Susie Madrak and Eve Gittelson are Virtually Speaking.

(photo: *Psycho Delia*)

April showers… Happy Morning!

Here are the talk show listings.  Come by for Book Salon, Jerusalem, Jerusalem.  Movie Night Monday is The Lazaruz Effect.  And Susie Madrak and Eve Gittelson are Virtually Speaking.

And now a word from Scarecrow:

Dear Readers:

If it’s nice outside, go for a walk Sunday Morning.  If you stay in, read a book or listen to music.  But no matter what, please, please do not watch any of the Talking Heads shows this week.   They feature economic officials who range from grossly negligent to criminally responsible for the financial crisis and who were not only asleep at their regulator posts but on of them actually encouraged Americans to take out bad loans issued by banks, whose officers should be in jail, at the height of the housing bubble.  These men are not merely incompetent; one of them should have the grace to apologize and never appear in public again.

Ironically, one of them will be asked to explain why it would be stupid to threaten to cause a default of US debt.  He will be followed by four clueless Tea-GOPers who are stupid enough to threaten to cause a default on the US debt.  Next week, the issue will be whether the earth is flat, followed by a discussion of why Australians do not float off into space every night.

Another show will feature a former head of the CIA who will not be able to answer why the CIA has been caught completely flat footed and unprepared with democratic, anti-authoriatian revolutions in 10 countries in the last 4 months.  Unfortunately, the host will likely not ask him why his agency has become useless in its central intelligence function.  Nor is the host likely to determine why the CIA , with its cowboy contractors and criminally atrocious behavior has managed to completely alienate the entire nation of Pakistan, never mind Afghanistan, the Middle East, North Africa, etc, even though Pakistan is supposed to be our strategic ally and whose cooperation was supposed to be essential to our Afghanistan policy, which he won’t be able to explain either.

Another show will interview the Tea-GOP’s budget flim-flam man, but the interviewer will have no idea why Mr. Ryan has earned that name.  The flim-flam man will lie at least a dozen times on this show, but there will be no one to correct this, meaning that if you watch this show, there is at least a 50% probability you will be substantially misinformed.   You would be better watching an hour of commercials by the oil companies and the guy who promises to fix things with the IRS.

So go out for a walk; take your kids or the dog to the park, read a book, do anything but watch these shows.  They should be shut down.  All of them.  Pitiful.

Washington Journal.

ABC’s This Week: Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. Then, Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL), Rep. Steve Southerland (R-FL), Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC) and Rep. Allen West (R-FL) on the debt ceiling.  Roundtable: George Will, Alice Rivlin, Matthew Dowd, and Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D-MA).

CBS’ Face The Nation: Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA).

Chris Matthews: Why Is Raising Taxes On The Rich So Tough? What If There Is No Hell?

CNN’s State of the Union: Budget with Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and Rep. Anthony Wiener (D-NY).  Libya with former CIA Director, Gen. Michael Hayden (Ret.).  Then, the price of gas and oil with the former president of Shell Oil, John Hofmeister.  It all ends with the second part of the interview with Donald Trump.

Fareed Zakaria – GPS: Fareed on Obama.  Then, PepsiCO’s CEO Indra Nooyi on America’s economic future, Washington politics, PepsiCo’s move towards “healthier” foods, and women in the workforce. The New York Times’ East Africa bureau chief Jeffrey Gettleman on Libya.  Followed by Lord Malloch Brown, the former deputy secretary-general of the United Nations and former British Minister of State, explains why Obama is viewed as follower and not a leader and more.

Fox News Sunday: Sleeping air traffic controllers, Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) Ranking Member, Budget Committee.  Roundtable: Dana Perino, Nina Easton, Kevin Madden, Juan WIlliams.

NBC’s Meet The Press: Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. Roundtable: Fmr. chairman of the Federal Reserve, Alan Greenspan; Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT), Former Gov. Jennifer Granholm (D-MI); author Jon Meacham; and author of the new book “Fail Up,” PBS’s Tavis Smiley.

Newsmakers: House Armed Services Committee Chairman Rep. Buck McKeon (R-CA) said that while he understands the need to make cuts in the federal budget, the Defense Dept. budget should still be conscientious of what programs are curtailed…

Q & A: Andrew Ferguson, senior editor at The Weekly Standard. Mr. Ferguson discusses his new book, “Crazy U: One Dad’s Crash Course in Getting His Kid Into College.” The book humorously follows him through the process of getting his son accepted into college…

Religion & Ethics.

60 Minutes: Greg Mortenson – He’s written inspiring best sellers, including “Three Cups of Tea,” but are the stories all true? The case of Beckett Brennan – The government recently sent out guidelines on how college judicial review boards should handle the rising incidence of campus sexual assault. Beckett Brennan says the University of the Pacific’s board bungled her case, spurring her to come forward to say she was sexually assaulted by three of the school’s athletes. The Co-founder – Lesley Stahl speaks to Microsoft co-founder and billionaire Paul Allen in his first interview about his upcoming book in which he criticizes his Microsoft co-founder, Bill Gates.

To The Contrary: Topics: 1- Will the military allow women to serve in combat units? 2- How child labor laws affect teen girls; 3- Fitness expert Jillian Michaels on the importance of mental health. Panelists: Former Canadian Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Kim Campbell; The Heritage Foundation’s Genevieve Wood; BlackSnob.com Editor/Creator Danielle Belton; and Conservative Commentator Tara Setmayer.

Univision’s Al Punto: Raul Plascencia Villanueva, President of Mexico’s National Human Rights Commission; Katherine Vargas, Press Secretary, “National Immigration Forum” and Juan Jose Gutierrez, President, “Vamos Unidos USA”; Francisco Pineda, Founder and President of the Environmental Committee of Cabañas; Eugenio Derbez, Comedian and Actor.

Virtually Speaking: Eve Gittelson and Susie Madrak discuss the developments of the week, 9pm ET.

C-SPAN’s Book TV.

FDL Book Salon: Jerusalem, Jerusalem: How the Ancient City Ignited Our Modern World.  “James Carroll’s urgent, masterful Jerusalem, Jerusalem uncovers the ways in which the ancient city became, unlike any other in the world — reaching far into our contemporary lives — an incendiary fantasy of a city.”  Come chat with author James Carroll, 5pm ET.

FDL Movie Night Monday: The Lazarus Effect. Director Lance Bangs answers questions about his experience making this incredible film about the transformative effect of ARV (anti retroviral) treatment on those living with HIV in Africa.  Lisa has moreWatch online then join in, 8pm ET.

Late Late Night FDL: Foney Fables
Foney Fables. This Warner Bros. Merrie Melodies cartoon was released on August 1, 1942.

Foney Fables.  This Warner Bros. Merrie Melodies cartoon was released on August 1, 1942.

Directed by Friz Freleng (as I. Freleng).  Produced by Leon Schlesinger.  Story by Michael Maltese.  Animation by Richard Bickenbach, Gerry Chiniquy (uncredited), Manuel Perez (uncredited), and Gil Turner (uncredited).  Layouts by Owen Fitzgerald (uncredited).  Film Editing and Sound Effects Editing by Treg Brown (uncredited).  Voices (in alphabetical order) by Sara Berner (Mother -uncredited); Mel Blanc (Prince, Tom Thumb, Giant, Goose, Baby, Grasshopper, Ant, Aladdin, Boy who cried Wolf, and Dog – uncredited); and Frank Graham (Narrator and Wolf – uncredited).  Original Music by Carl W. Stalling (uncredited).  Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling.  Orchestration by Milt Franklyn (uncredited).

Grab your popcorn, put your feet up on the seatback in front of ya, and aim your spitballs at the ushers please. This is Late Late Night FireDogLake, where off topic is the topic … so dive in. What’s on your mind?


Overcrowded Cities

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on April 17th, 2011 4:34 am by HL

Overcrowded Cities

By Ares, Caglecartoons.com

Mr. Fish's Cartoon

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Eurocorruption

By Kap, Cagle Cartoons, Spain

Mr. Fish's Cartoon

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GANG OF SIX: Bipartisan Senate Group Seeks Debt-Reduction Plan

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on April 17th, 2011 4:33 am by HL

GANG OF SIX: Bipartisan Senate Group Seeks Debt-Reduction Plan
Days after President Obama called for forming a bipartisan group in Congress to begin negotiating a $4 trillion debt-reduction package, the parties have not even…

Meet Donald Trump’s Political ‘Pit Bull’
The man behind Donald Trump’s possible 2012 presidential campaign is a registered Democrat who voted for Barack Obama in 2008……

Al-Qaeda In Yemen Adapts To Evade U.S.
WASHINGTON — On Christmas Eve in 2009, intelligence officials anxiously monitored dozens of al-Qaida members as they gathered for a meeting in southern Yemen. The…

Trump Stalling NBC While He Mulls Campaign
PALM BEACH, Fla. — Donald Trump says he has put off agreeing to an extension of his “Celebrity Apprentice” reality show while he weighs a…

VIDEO: Tea Party Activist’s Racist Email Shocks Orange County GOP
UPDATED — Marilyn Davenport has asserted in a private email to Orange County GOP leaders that she will not be stepping down, and she apologizes…


Fiancée, Father of Giffords Staffer Support Ban On High Capacity Clips

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on April 17th, 2011 4:32 am by HL

Fiancée, Father of Giffords Staffer Support Ban On High Capacity Clips
Efforts to ban high-capacity gun magazines, like the one allegedly used by accused Tuscon shooter Jared Loughner, are gaining some momentum. On Tuesday morning, Kelly O’Brien – the fiancée of congressional staffer Gabe Zimmerman, who was killed in the Tuscon rampage – joined legislators for a press conference to endorse House and Senate bills banning high-capacity magazines, or assault clips.

Presented By:


Presented By:

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on April 17th, 2011 4:31 am by HL

Presented By:

“He Started It” — Ft. Sumter, the First Shot, and Moral Authority
A brief thought about the Civil War sesquitennial and the importance, historically, of the moral high ground, especially regarding how wars start. The history of epochal wars, it turns out, isn’t so different from children’s familiar finger-pointing over who “started…



Rep. Jeb Hensarling Calls Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid ?Cruel Ponzi Schemes?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on April 17th, 2011 4:30 am by HL

Rep. Jeb Hensarling Calls Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid ?Cruel Ponzi Schemes?

As the House took up Rep. Paul Ryan’s plan to end Medicare and Medicaid yesterday, Rep. Jeb Hensarling, the GOP Conference chair, called the programs, along with Social Security, “cruel ponzi schemes” that will bankrupt the nation.

Hensarling admitted that the three programs had been “of great comfort and assistance to my grandparents and parents,” but he went on to claim that that they were now morphing into the greatest drivers of the national debt:

REP. HENSARLING: Let’s remember again the main drivers of this national debt are three large entitlement programs, programs that have been of great comfort and assistance to my parents and grandparents but they’re morphing into cruel ponzi schemes for my 9-year-old daughter and 7-year-olds. Unfortunately, the President ignores the reality, he doesn’t really give the facts to the American people and they will go bankrupt where we will save and secure these programs for future generations.

Watch it:

While he now calls for “saving and securing the programs for future generations,” Hensarling has previously shown little interest in effective entitlement reform or deficit reduction. Last December, Hensarling decried the health care reform law’s reforms to make Medicare more efficient. And in the last few weeks, Hensarling has declined to say whether he would play “chicken” on the debt ceiling and even argued that corporate tax rates should be lowered.

Hensarling is not the first conservative to call Social Security a Ponzi scheme. As ThinkProgress has previously reported, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) called the program “a Ponzi scheme that Bernie Madoff would be proud of.” Former House Majority Leader and FreedomWorks chairman Dick Armey called Social Security a “pay-as-you-go Ponzi scheme“; a month later, Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) also compared the program to a Ponzi scheme. And Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) campaigned by making the same comparison in his television commercials.

As Charles Ponzi’s own biographer, Michael Zulkoff, has noted, these programs are not Ponzi schemes because “no one is being misled,” and they are not automatically doomed to fail. Indeed, they’re the polar moral opposite: social insurance policies created to benefit retirees, the disabled and survivors of deceased workers, not a single individual.

Kevin Donohoe


Weekly Obama address: Deficit-reduction plan

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on April 17th, 2011 4:29 am by HL

Weekly Obama address: Deficit-reduction plan
Launching a week devoted to selling his deficit-reduction plan, President Barack Obama drew sharp contrasts with a House Republican budget that he says offers a vision that “is wrong for America” in his weekly address. (April 16)

Fact Checker: ‘Historic’ budget cuts?
“This agreement between Democrats and Republicans, on behalf of all Americans, is on a budget that invests in our future while making the largest annual spending cut in our history.’’

New chairman Priebus cleans up RNC after Michael Steele’s tumultuous tenure
After two tumultuous years, the Republican National Committee is getting back to business.


We Need the Courage to Raise Taxes

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on April 17th, 2011 4:28 am by HL

We Need the Courage to Raise Taxes
Walter Mondale, Washington Post
We will not be able to control our budget deficits without raising taxes. That simple reality has brought us to a moment of truth in American politics. President Obama’s speech Wednesday lived up to that moment, and now Democrats and Republicans in Congress must take a similar stand.Many have described my 1984 presidential campaign promise to raise taxes as exemplifying the folly of proposing tax hikes during an election.

Mutating Mitt Romney
Gail Collins, New York Times
This was the week we've been waiting for! Decades into the future, you will be able to tell your grandchildren where you were when Mitt Romney announced that he had formed a presidential exploratory committee.Who knew he needed to explore? He said he was running on his Christmas card, for Lord's sake.My job today is to give you a run-through of every book Mitt Romney has ever written.

The Rise of the Anti-Keynesians