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Archive for September 10th, 2011

Late Late Night FDL: Everything’s Better With Muppets

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 10th, 2011 4:45 am by HL

Late Late Night FDL: Everything’s Better With Muppets
SprayEverything’s Better With Muppets.

SprayEverything’s Better With Muppets.

Grab your popcorn, put your feet up on the coffee table, and try to keep the spitballs off the screen please.  This is Late Late Night FireDogLake, where off topic is the topic … so dive in.  What’s on your mind?


Tom Engelhardt: America, Tear Down ‘Freedom Tower’

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 10th, 2011 4:44 am by HL

Tom Engelhardt: America, Tear Down ‘Freedom Tower’
Seven years into the Soviet Union’s fatal adventure in Afghanistan, U.S. President Ronald Reagan stood before the international community in West Berlin and demanded that Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev tear down the wall that separated East Germany from the West. Today, it is the United States that is engulfed in costly, interminable wars, and Tom Engelhardt, editor of TomDispatch, is calling for Americans to “tear down” the $3.3 billion “hubris-filled 1,776 feet of building, planned in the heyday of George W. Bush and soaring into the Manhattan sky like a nyaah-nyaah invitation to future terrorists,” that is being erected to commemorate the 9/11 attacks. Engelhardt is no Reagan Republican. But for him, “Freedom Tower”—renamed 1 World Trade Center in 2009 and set to stand at the symbolic height of 1,776 feet—exploits the ideal of liberty and all those who were killed in the decade-long worldwide carnage that followed the morning of Sept. 11, 2001. —ARK TomDispatch: Ask yourself this: ten years into the post-9/11 era, haven’t we had enough of ourselves?  If we have any respect for history or humanity or decency left, isn’t it time to rip the Band-Aid off the wound, to remove 9/11 from our collective consciousness?  No more invocations of those attacks to explain otherwise inexplicable wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and our oh-so-global war on terror.  No more invocations of 9/11 to keep the Pentagon and the national security state flooded with money.  No more invocations of 9/11 to justify every encroachment on liberty, every new step in the surveillance of Americans, every advance in pat-downs and wand-downs and strip downs that keeps fear high and the homeland security state afloat. The attacks of September 11, 2001 were in every sense abusive, horrific acts.  And the saddest thing is that the victims of those suicidal monstrosities have been misused here ever since under the guise of pious remembrance.  This country has become dependent on the dead of 9/11—who have no way of defending themselves against how they have been used—as an all-purpose explanation for our own goodness and the horrors we’ve visited on others, for the many towers-worth of dead in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere whose blood is on our hands. Read more

Seven years into the Soviet Union’s fatal adventure in Afghanistan, U.S. President Ronald Reagan stood before the international community in West Berlin and demanded that Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev tear down the wall that separated East Germany from the West.

Today, it is the United States that is engulfed in costly, interminable wars, and Tom Engelhardt, editor of TomDispatch, is calling for Americans to “tear down” the $3.3 billion “hubris-filled 1,776 feet of building, planned in the heyday of George W. Bush and soaring into the Manhattan sky like a nyaah-nyaah invitation to future terrorists,” that is being erected to commemorate the 9/11 attacks.

Engelhardt is no Reagan Republican. But for him, “Freedom Tower”—renamed 1 World Trade Center in 2009 and set to stand at the symbolic height of 1,776 feet—exploits the ideal of liberty and all those who were killed in the decade-long worldwide carnage that followed the morning of Sept. 11, 2001. —ARK

TomDispatch:

Ask yourself this: ten years into the post-9/11 era, haven’t we had enough of ourselves?? If we have any respect for history or humanity or decency left, isn’t it time to rip the Band-Aid off the wound, to remove 9/11 from our collective consciousness?? No more invocations of those attacks to explain otherwise inexplicable wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and our oh-so-global war on terror.? No more invocations of 9/11 to keep the Pentagon and the national security state flooded with money.? No more invocations of 9/11 to justify every encroachment on liberty, every new step in the surveillance of Americans, every advance in pat-downs and wand-downs and strip downs that keeps fear high and the homeland security state afloat.

The attacks of September 11, 2001 were in every sense abusive, horrific acts.? And the saddest thing is that the victims of those suicidal monstrosities have been misused here ever since under the guise of pious remembrance.? This country has become dependent on the dead of 9/11—who have no way of defending themselves against how they have been used—as an all-purpose explanation for our own goodness and the horrors we’ve visited on others, for the many towers-worth of dead in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere whose blood is on our hands.

Read more

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Rep. Judy Chu Shares Her Family’s Tragic Suicide Story

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 10th, 2011 4:43 am by HL

Rep. Judy Chu Shares Her Family’s Tragic Suicide Story
WASHINGTON — The disturbing number of suicides in the military now has a face It’s Lance Cpl. Harry Lew, a high-spirited Marine who shot and…

James Campion: The Joe Cool Double-Reverse Hail Mary
Right now Obama can afford to be bold. He has no official challenger for his gig, and judging from the eight-headed fiasco a small portion of the nation endured the night before in the second of an interminable five early-staged Republican debates, that time is a long way off.

Dr. Cheryl Pappas: In the Shadow of 9/11: Ten Years Later in America
As I read the heart-warming tributes on the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, and the beautiful words of hope and encouragement for our future, I…

Obama’s Plan For Troubled Mortgages: Too Little, Too Late
It was almost a blink-and-you-miss-it moment in President Barack Obamaâ??s jobs speech, but for about 20 secondsâ??after he urged Congress to pass his $447 billion…

Texas Firefighters Forced To Buy Their Own Gear
WASHINGTON — In Texas, firefighters aren’t just battling the wild fires raging around Austin and Houston. The state’s first responders have also had to deal…


The Washington Times’ Fun With Photoshop

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 10th, 2011 4:42 am by HL

The Washington Times’ Fun With Photoshop

The Washington Times published an illustration of President Obama’s face on late singer Amy Winehouse’s body to illustrate a column by Jeffrey Kuhner that claimed Obama is “injecting the heroin of class warfare and socialism into our national bloodstream,” which will lead to “insanity and death.” This is just the latest outrageous Photoshopped image or illustration published by the Times to attack Obama.

Wash. Times Regularly Uses Outrageous Images To Illustrate Right-Wing Rhetoric

“Obama Winehouse”: Times Puts Obama’s Face On Amy Winehouse’s Body. An illustration of President Obama’s head on Amy Winehouse’s body accompanied a September 8 column by Jeffrey Kuhner titled, “Obama and the lunatic left.” Kuhner wrote that Obama is “injecting the heroin of class warfare and socialism into our national bloodstream,” which will lead to “insanity and death.” From the Times

[The Washington Times, 6/22/10, via Media Matters]


Anonymous Unmasked: Mugshots Of Alleged Members Of The ‘Hacktivist’ Group

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 10th, 2011 4:41 am by HL

Anonymous Unmasked: Mugshots Of Alleged Members Of The ‘Hacktivist’ Group
Thanks to a Freedom of Information Act request, TPM has obtained mugshots of the individuals the feds arrested back in July for their alleged involvement in the ‘hacktivist’ group Anonymous.

State Technical College In Missouri Institutes Mandatory Drug Tests For Students
A state technical college in Missouri has an unusual requirement for new students: pass a mandatory drug test. Linn State Technical College — a 1,200-student school in Linn, Missouri — instituted the program this week, the AP reports. Associate Dean…



Obama Goes ‘Full Denzel’ on the Hapless GOP

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 10th, 2011 4:39 am by HL

Obama Goes ‘Full Denzel’ on the Hapless GOP


How Fewer Working Hours Can Save Our Health, Economy, and the Planet

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 10th, 2011 4:38 am by HL

How Fewer Working Hours Can Save Our Health, Economy, and the Planet
Millions of Americans have lost control over the basic rhythm of their daily lives.

New Evidence Calls Into Question Claim that AT&T/T-Mobile Merger Will Create Jobs
Despite claims by T-Mobile and AT&T, job losses in the proposed merger could exceed job gains.

The 10 Worst Post-9/11 Military Contracting Boondoggles
Since 9/11, America’s wars haven’t brought victories, but have spawned countless scandals, scams and boondoggles. Here are the 10 worst.


The Capitalist Crack-Up

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 10th, 2011 4:36 am by HL

The Capitalist Crack-Up
Fitzgerald, by then deep into an inglorious relationship with Gin Rickeys, was lucid enough, in 1936, to explain that “all life is a process of breaking down, but the blows that do the dramatic side of the work – the…

Turkey Is Trying To Save Israel From Itself
Roger Cohen has a great column in today’s Times. It is about the sheer idiocy of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s refusal to apologize for the killings on the Mavi Marmara relief ship. (It also addresses President Obama’s complete indifference to the…

George Soros on Our Failing Public Sphere
As we try to make sense of the Republican presidential candidates’ debate, and of Barack Obama’s long belated, once-bumped, high-stakes speech on jobs – it might help to read “George Soros’ frightening assessment of the American public sphere. Too few…


How Block Grants Would Destroy Medicaid?In One Table

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 10th, 2011 4:35 am by HL

How Block Grants Would Destroy Medicaid?In One Table
The child advocacy group First Focus is out with a new report explaining why the GOP’s proposal to block grant the Medicaid program — an initiative supported by all of the GOP presidential candidates — would “end Medicaid as we know it, causing states to reduce enrollment, limit benefits, cut provider payments, and shift more […]

The child advocacy group First Focus is out with a new report explaining why the GOP’s proposal to block grant the Medicaid program — an initiative supported by all of the GOP presidential candidates — would “end Medicaid as we know it, causing states to reduce enrollment, limit benefits, cut provider payments, and shift more costs onto the children and families who rely on public programs.” The paper offers this handy table laying out the differences between the current financing structure and block grants:

Israeli Foreign Minister Reportedly Seeks Meetings With Anti-Turkish Terror Group
Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman plans to hold meetings with the head of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), a group which has maintained an armed struggle against the Turkish government since 1984 and is internationally recognized as a terrorist organization. Word of the meeting was published on Ynet.com which also suggested that the the PKK […]

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman plans to hold meetings with the head of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), a group which has maintained an armed struggle against the Turkish government since 1984 and is internationally recognized as a terrorist organization. Word of the meeting was published on Ynet.com which also suggested that the the PKK might ask Lieberman for military aid. The proposed meeting, which would add additional stress to Israel’s tense relationship with Turkey following Turkey’s recent decision to expel Israel’s ambassador from Ankara, was met by cautious remarks from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office. Haaretz reports that the Prime Minister’s office did not confirm or deny Lieberman’s retaliatory plan but called for restraint with regards to statements concerning Israel’s relationship with Turkey, stating, “Our policy was and remains to prevent a breakdown of relations with Turkey and easing the tensions between the countries.”


FHFA working with White House to help troubled homeowners refinance

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 10th, 2011 4:34 am by HL

FHFA working with White House to help troubled homeowners refinance

The federal agency that oversees taxpayer-backed mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac said Friday it is working with the White House to explore ways to help troubled homeowners take advantage of historically low interest rates.

The announcement by Edward DeMarco, acting director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, came a day after President Obama referenced the effort in an address to Congress, saying his administration would “work with federal housing agencies to help more people refinance their mortgages at interest rates that are now near 4 percent.”

Read full article >>

Redskins vs. Giants: Five storylines to follow

The Washington Redskins on Sunday open the season against the New York Giants, and will try to end their NFC East rival’s dominance after having lost nine of the last 10.

The Redskins haven’t beaten the Giants at FedEx Field since 2005, but are looking to kick off Year 2 of the Mike Shanahan Era on a positive note.

Here are five storylines to follow Sunday afternoon.

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Bob Turner leads David Weprin by six in Weiner House race

There’s some very bad news for Democrats in next Tuesday’s New York special election — Friday’s independent Siena Poll has Republican Bob Turner beating Democrat David Weprin by six points.

Businessman Turner leads Assemblyman Weprin for the seat vacated by ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner (D) by 50 to 44 in the survey. A month ago, Weprin led Turner by six points. The sample size was 866 likely voters and the Turner’s lead is outside of the 3.3 plus or minus margin of error.

In a sign of the perhaps desperate times, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee just poured half a million dollars into ads into the Queens-based 9th district, and the Democrat-backed House Majority PAC is also buying airtime.

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Huntsman discloses his personal wealth

Republican presidential candidate Jon Huntsman listed between $15 million and $66 million in personal assets in a government filing released Friday.

The former Utah governor has extensive holdings worth between $5 million and $25 million in Huntsman Corp., the family chemical company started by his billionaire father, Jon Sr.

Huntsman has already given up to to $2 million to seed his campaign and may have to rely further on his personal wealth if his candidacy doesn’t attract more momentum. Huntsman’s wealth puts him behind Mitt Romney’s $264 million in assets but well above many other GOP candidates.

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Haley Barbour to join ‘super PAC’ for 2012 fundraising

American Crossroads, the well-funded conservative group that played a crucial role in the Republican wave election last year, is bringing rainmaker Haley Barbour on board and doubling its fundraising goal for the 2012 contest, the group announced late Thursday.

The “super PAC” and its nonprofit affiliate, Crossroads GPS, will aim to raise an eye-popping $240 million during the 2012 cycle, putting the alliance far ahead of its rivals on either side of the political spectrum. The groups raised a combined $71 million in 2010 and say they have exceeded their own goals by raising $24.5 million so far this year.

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