afternoon all

Freep.com (Thanks amk)

Steve Benen: One of the more clear-cut triumphs of President Obama’s first three years has been the success of his auto-industry rescue. Republicans predicted it would fail miserably. They were wrong and the White House was right.

Bloomberg reported this week that auto plants are operating at a capacity unseen in a long while, adding shifts and creating jobs. The Detroit Free Press reported today that GM has reclaimed the crown of world’s largest automaker. And perhaps best of all, Michigan’s unemployment rate has also dropped to its lowest levels since September 2008, buoyed by the auto industry.

More here




Deadline: It will be Michelle Obama’s late-night debut as the First Lady when she appears on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno on Tuesday, January 31.


Political Carnival (Thanks again amk!)


By a reader at The Atlantic: It’s pretty clear to me that Obama is the chessmaster. Stop looking at this politically – let’s look at policy. Obama has been a master of accomplishing things, even with the Tea Party Terrorists hell bent on shutting down the government and ruining the full faith and credit of the United States.

Look at this from liberal,conservative, and moderate perspectives.

Liberals: Obama will end two wars, ended DADT, created the CFPA, got $20b from BP in the face of strong opposition, saved Detroit, signed New START, and enacted universal healthcare – the defining goal of the liberal movement.

For conservatives: he finished the job successfully in two wars, sustainably entered Libya while ensuring our allies took the heavy burden, okayed two risky operations – one that killed pirates and the other killing Osama – and just did more to stabilize long term deficits than anyone since Ike.

Full post here



Michael Tomasky: Maybe Mitt will win Saturday night, and the contest will be finished. But Newt is giving Romney a run for his money in South Carolina—and we all know the reason why.

…. Gingrich has re-re-returned, and this time it’s about simple racism. If he actually wins South Carolina, the nomination fight and the party are suddenly in turmoil. It may only be for a week, but even just for that week, it would reveal a primary electorate that is so consumed with its paranoias that it has turned politics completely away from the question of who might govern the country well to who can best embody our hatreds and revenge fantasies. Conservatism has been half that for 30 years anyway, but it is now on the cusp of dispensing with the artifice and becoming that entirely.

Full post here






What? These were posted already?! O…..kay:

January 17, 2012. President Barack Obama unexpectedly runs into Michelle on her birthday in the basement of the White House

Though official duties filled much of the day, Tuesday was also Michelle Obama’s 48th birthday. As the president returned to the West Wing in the evening, he unexpectedly met the First Lady. “Obama gave her several kisses and wished her a happy birthday then walked off,” Morris says. “It was the highlight of the day for me—something you can’t plan for as a photographer. It was the most interesting photograph for me of the day by far.”

Time (more photos at the link)

Thanks aamom

212 Responses to “afternoon all”

  1. January 19, 2012 at 2:49 pm



    the ads write themselves.

  2. January 19, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    January 19, 2012 2:15 PM

    Romney’s stashed cash in the Caymans

    Following up on an earlier item, as if there weren’t enough questions involving taxes swirling around Mitt Romney, his offshore accounts make his tax returns that much more important.

    The Romney campaign has pushed back against the reports this morning, arguing that the Republican is not using his offshore strategy to avoid U.S. taxes. The Wall Street Journal reports the campaign’s line is dubious.

    Tax experts said some of the offshore holdings are likely intended to help Mr. Romney avoid paying an obscure but hefty tax of as much as 35% on some of those investments, held in a tax-deferred retirement account.

    As The Wall Street Journal reported in Thursday’s paper, many of Mr. Romney’s offshore investments are held through his individual retirement account, which has grown to between $20.7 million and $101.6 million. IRAs are tax-deferred accounts, in which earnings accrue tax-free until the money is withdrawn during retirement.

    Mr. Romney’s IRA has grown so large, it appears, due to investments in various vehicles managed by Bain Capital, the investment fund he helped found in 1984. His latest financial disclosure report, filed in August, shows that many of the IRAs assets are in Bain-affiliated entities located offshore, including one in the Cayman Islands that the report listed as having a value of between $5 million and $25 million.


    • 7 Pamela
      January 19, 2012 at 3:05 pm

      I have no IRA anymore, had to pay the bills when I changed careers in ’07. I called it my very own personal recession..thankfully was self-employed with enough work when the Great Recession hit. I felt, and still feel, truly blessed. I knew from the deepest quiet place in my heart, when Barack H. Obama announced in 2007 that he would run for office, not only would he win, but we would all be okay eventually.

    January 19, 2012 at 2:54 pm


  4. 9 Pamela
    January 19, 2012 at 2:56 pm

    6th! For a minute or two!

  5. 12 Pamela
    January 19, 2012 at 2:58 pm

    The Bennett cartoon of flattened Perry! Hysterical ! Burst out laughing over here!

    • January 19, 2012 at 3:08 pm

      I love that in the caption, she says that the President gave First Lady Michelle “several kisses”. Oh, how sweet!

    • 16 Pamela
      January 19, 2012 at 3:10 pm

      In reality, can ANY of begin to imagine knowing there are cameras pointing at us every waking hour of every day? Heaven help us, I KNOW y’all would be frightened to see candid shots of me! Terrified, even! 🙂 and these two cuties always look perfect!

    • 17 nospin
      January 19, 2012 at 5:30 pm

      I absolutely love those pictures. LOVE THEM.

      It is a beautiful thing. Makes me more determined to keep this wonderful couple in the WH 4 more years.

  6. 18 defytheodds
    January 19, 2012 at 3:01 pm

    Santorum wasn’t always so opposed to government-run schools—especially one Pennsylvania cyber charter school that offered students free computers, internet service, and online classes. Between 2001 and 2004, that online school allowed the Santorum family to live in Virginia, while sticking Pennsylvania taxpayers with a $100,000 bill.


    Thanks Chips for all the great info…

    • January 19, 2012 at 4:47 pm

      Yes, Defy, and this was the straw that broke the back of PA voters in his Senate run against Casey. Voters had had enough of him already but the fact that he lived in Virginia and charged the state of PA for his kid’s education (using a bogus PA address in the process)— well that was just too much. Santorum is a sneaky hypocrite who has honed a talent for self-righteous whining. He also has a deep-seated resentment of women and would like nothing more than to see them back in the kitchen, preferably pregnant with their sixth child.

      • 20 dotster3
        January 19, 2012 at 5:05 pm

        He also hates scientists. Today he said, “Scientists are immoral.” He also hates contraception. He hates lots of things. He’s a whackadoodle.

  7. 21 Linda
    January 19, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    It is Thursday……where are Newt’s tax returns ?????

  8. January 19, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    Romney didn’t just stash millions in the Cayman Islands. MSNBC is saying that Romney also stashed millions in 20 offshore places including Virgin Islands, Hong Kong, Ireland, etc.

    Romney needs to release many years worth of tax returns and not just the last year. If he doesn’t then the media is going to continue to HOUND him.

    • January 19, 2012 at 3:06 pm

      The amount of hubris this man has just astounds me. If this were a Greek myth, he’d be in Hades pushing a rock up a slope for eternity in punishment. You’re running for one sort of office or another for 20 years, aiming towards the Presidency, and you think you can skate by without releasing your tax returns. Yes, it’s not required, but every candidate does it. What makes you so special? This offshore money story is what the press will latch onto. The one thing we can count on the press to do is follow a scandal, no matter who the perpetrator is.

    • January 19, 2012 at 3:09 pm

      Tell Robney, I will Be happy to hide his Money for him!

  9. January 19, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    Romney is the poster child why the rich are getting richer, the poor is getting poorer, and the middle class is getting the SHAFT.

    • January 19, 2012 at 3:12 pm

      I was thinking this very thing on the drive in this morning. Romney represents everything that is wrong with capitalism, and he is the embodiment of all things that are keeping this country from moving forward, including the fact that many working class people are praising him for being able to keep his taxes low/unpaid, successfully hide money and care not one wit about the common man. Yesterday, I heard many people interviewed saying they wish they could learn how to get that tax rate, and how it’s nobody’s business about Mitt’s taxes or his hidden money. People can be pretty stupid. Nobody begrudges people making money or being successful – it’s the WAY they do it, and then especially those who lie about other honest people and build themselves up as the everyday man. That’s what is wrong here. Make money, like Warren Buffett, but don’t try and tell me you’re unemployed, or afraid of pink slips, or that you love this country (and it’s people) more than the guy who’s worked 24/7 for the past several years to demonstrate that love in word AND deed.

      • January 19, 2012 at 5:02 pm

        Theo, there are always going to be people who envy their oppressors and don’t realize the implications of what they’re saying. The very people who want that low tax rate will also demand Social Security and Medicare when they retire; want unemployment insurance if they lose their jobs; and want a first-class defense if the country is attacked. It never occurs to them that if you want a decent society you have to pay for it. But I don’t think this is a majority view. Most people understand the point of taxes and don’t relish the idea of the rich getting off easy. It would be my dream to have a national discussion on the responsibility of citizenship and the obligations each of us owe to our common good. I honestly think this is the kind of conversation that PBO has been trying to spark for years and it is one you hear echoed in Elizabeth Warren’s remarks. If we could all pick up the ball on this and try talking about fairness and responsibility in conversations with friends and other voters, we could do our small part to awaken a new American conscience. The OWS people could have gone in this direction but blew it with their immaturity and lack of focus.

      • January 19, 2012 at 5:03 pm

        Or more than the guy/gal who’s willing to defend it, allow his/her children to defend it, and share his/her little with those less fortunate!

        BTW, Theo, I notice you’ve changed your avatar…AGAIN! Just because you (and Yardarm) know the easy way to switch avatars in and out is no reason to show up the less adroit avatar mortals! Remember how long and how many attempts it took for me to get mine to show? Of course, you don’t remember! I think you should consider that having a cyber facelift too often confuses some family members. I really liked your last two faces. How can I recognize you if you keep changing your face? Sigh! Okay. Okay, this IS envy speaking. Sigh!

        • January 19, 2012 at 5:12 pm

          Ha! I saw this one yesterday, and just had to have it! I’ll be sticking with this one until November 6, 2012 – (or more likely, until January 20, 2013), so you won’t have to worry about finding my avatar again (although, I’ll bring my Canadian flag one out for July 1 – Canada Day!). 😀

        • 33 yardarm756
          January 19, 2012 at 6:21 pm

          Envy? For shame. Let me know if you want to change and i’ll walk you thru it. 😉

      • 34 dotster3
        January 19, 2012 at 5:10 pm

        I don’t see how he can say he loves this country when he hides money he owes to this country. No gratitude or loyalty to this country or its citizens.

  10. 35 nintendowii10
    January 19, 2012 at 3:05 pm

    I’m 999th, in honor of ColberCain mania! :mrgreen:

    • 36 dotster3
      January 19, 2012 at 5:24 pm

      People are probably sick of me talking about Colbert, but I think what he’s doing is utterly amazing—-and so important bringing to light all the super pac money flowing into and corrupting our elections. I even heard a discussion today on Bashir about the need for a constitutional amendment to void the Citizens United decision, not that I’m holding my breath on that one, but people are now fully aware of the consequences of that Sup. Ct. decision. Colbert’s latest ad, narrated by Samuel L. Jackson, is another gem, this time an attack ad on Colbert. What Colbert is also accomplishing is paving the way for voters to disregard all the scary, dark and dishonest Koch/billionaire ads which will be aimed at Obama.

  11. 37 yardarm756
    January 19, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    Something tells me that the thugs want anybody but Mitt. Reason being Mitt’s lack of debating skills/off-shore accounts. Just sayin’.

  12. January 19, 2012 at 3:10 pm

    Greetings TOD family

    Quick hello ten off to the salt mines

    Nation’s First Hybrid Electric Street Sweepers

    Things are getting pretty dirty in SC, maybe New York could send them some help.

  13. January 19, 2012 at 3:10 pm

    With that, I’m out.

  14. January 19, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    This was posted in Spanish but here it is in English.

  15. 52 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    January 19, 2012 at 3:13 pm

    YES! CFPB @ work…

    • 54 Bill
      January 19, 2012 at 3:26 pm

      Willard may be losing control.

    • 55 FiredUpInCA
      January 19, 2012 at 3:26 pm

      (CNN) – Mitt Romney made a “polite” phone call Thursday to rival Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum to “concede victory” in Iowa, according to Santorum’s spokesman Hogan Gidley.

      But Romney’s team objected, saying his campaign didn’t concede.

      “Gov. Romney called Sen. Santorum to congratulate him on the Iowa results,” said Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul.


    • 57 tally
      January 19, 2012 at 4:30 pm

      OH LOOK – David Beckham sings for 2 more years with the LA Galaxy. How about that.

      • January 19, 2012 at 4:39 pm

        So he’ll be 96 when the contract ends?


        • 59 tally
          January 19, 2012 at 5:41 pm

          undoubtedly. /cue Hotel California……… “but you can never leave…”

          I must clarify my Beckham – “thing.” I was not excited when he first signed with the Galaxy in 2007 due to the chaos that goes with him. However, if he was going to be in the MLS, I was glad he was on MY team. It felt special. We had won the Cup just two years earlier, and our team was going through coaches like most people change their smoke detector batteries.

          There was even a forum thread on our supporters website, “What Would David Beckham Do To My Team?”

          Then we lost MOST of our team (other than Landon), in order to afford Becks. That decimated our team, and cost us even more coaches. (Five coaches in five years – beat that!)

          He came with a gaggle of paparazzo, and was far more into being David Beckham, and getting his record call up caps for UK in the World Cup than he was being a Galaxy team player. Landon even gave up the captainship for David, which proved to be horrid for the team.

          The Galaxy fans were not happy. I ended up being one of his last defenders… until:

          After his 2009 loan to AC Milan, his first game back – MID SEASON (July) – was a friendly in OUR HOUSE (Home Depot Center) against AC Milan. He spent more time on their bench, talking to their players and their coach than his own…. in OUR HOME STADIUM, wearing a Galaxy kit.

          Needless to say, this did NOT go down well with the home crowd. People were already pissed off by his leaving on loan in the first place since he had a signed 5-year contract WITH US.

          At one point in the first half, Ronaldinho was taking a corner kick right in front of our (The LA RIOT SQUAD – main supporters group) section, and David came over to personally hand him the ball. While doing so, he put an arm around Ronaldinho’s waist, and whispered something in his ear and smiled. 👿 WTF?

          Well, someone on the Squad yelled, “HEY BECKHAM! WHO THE FUCK DO YOU PLAY FOR?”

          This apparently broke Beckham, and sparked an international incident.

          At the half, instead of heading straight to the tunnel and to the locker room, he came over to our corner, tried to jump the light boards, and began calling out the fan who had said that. Now, keep in mind, David Backham has played all over the globe, in much harsher home circumstances (after he missed a PK in the ’98 World Cup his likeness was hung in effigy outside of every pub in the UK, people spoke of Posh’s certain penchant for deviant sex, and wished cancer on his children), but we, the LA RIOT SQUAD is what finally caused Beckham to break and lose his cool. I am actually quite proud of that. You see, here in LA, celebrities take their kids to school, shop at Trader Joe’s, and go to Starbucks, just like everyone else. No one cares about Brand Beckham™. We are about winning games.

          When the fan – whom David invited onto the field actually came down, four redshirts jumped on top of him, and shoved him into the dirt. David saw that, along with the bazillion cell phones that were filming it – oops – he held out his hand to offer to shake the fan’s hand – as if the fan could being under four giant security guards.

          He then lied to the press later that night after the game, saying, “I only wanted to shake the guys hand, but he’d have none of it.” yeah. Video says otherwise.

          Beckham was later fined by the league.

          That night broke me. I was over Beckham, and couldn’t wait for his contract to end. “Please don’t let the door of that BA flight hit you in the ass on your way home.”

          I was his last defender, and was almost the last fan he won back over.

          It wasn’t until this last 2011 season when it seemed he FINALLY left David Beckham the celebrity behind and became a real Galaxy team player. Landon was given back the captainship years ago, and after a very public falling out the two had (right around the time of the AC Milan loan and the release of the book The Beckham Experiment), David and Landon have become brothers. David finally realized that the MLS isn’t some rube-filled farm league, and that it wasn’t the cake-walk to The Cup he probably imagined it would be. After many injuries, and all the chaos that follows him, he’s had to fight hard for the title, that he AND THE REST OF THE TEAM, finally managed to earn at the end of his five year contract in November. The playoffs and mostly the MLS CUP Final, really won be back to Beckham.

          Ever since, October I think, Paris Saint Germain’s Qatary BIG MONEY Overlords had been waging a PR campaign to bully Beckham into signing with them in The Daily Mail. Even saying the deal was so done, the Beckhams were looking for a home and the team Front Office was helping interview schools for their kids.

          The night of The Final, on an on-field post game interview, Mike Magee (mostly on the end lately of David’s goal assists), when asked by the reporter, “What do you think of Beckham going to PSG?”, replied with a sly smile, “He’s not going anywhere. He’s staying.”

          Chuck Norris wants to be Mike Magee when he grows up. Badly Cooper tells all the girls he’s really Mike Magee…… #mikemageefacts

          I knew then, he was going to stay, and I was happy about it. He’s no longer all about David. He’s now really part of the team. So, I’m back. I’m glad I was right. I’m glad David didn’t allow the $$ to bully him into leaving. He has two chances now (albeit probably slim) to win the World Club Cup with the Galaxy, since we’ve won the Support’s Shield the last two seasons (first in the league before playoffs.)

          Now I just want to add a certain Blonde Uruguayan – I don’t care if he’s broken at the moment. THAT would be more than icing on my Galaxy cake.

      • 60 Bill
        January 19, 2012 at 5:05 pm

        Tally, I am not a soccer expert, but I have followed the amazing career of Galaxy coach, Bruce Arena, for years since he coached my university to five national chwmpionships in the 1990’s. Do the Galaxy fans appreciate his genius, or do they feel the players are more responsible for your championship?

  16. 71 defytheodds
    January 19, 2012 at 3:15 pm

    Inside Obama’s World: The President talks to TIME About the Changing Nature of American Power

    In an exclusive interview with TIME’s Fareed Zakaria, Obama opens up on Iran, Afghanistan, China and the challenges the U.S. faces in navigating a rapidly changing world. A full transcript of their conversation follows:


    • January 19, 2012 at 3:41 pm

      AT LAST, an interviewer worth PBO’s time.

      • January 19, 2012 at 5:14 pm

        And answers that show my President is not only very aware of the motives of his naysayers, but that he also HAS ANSWERS. Not that this was ever in doubt. While reading I was thinking, ‘if they’d only work WITH this man’s leadership!’

      • January 19, 2012 at 5:22 pm

        PBO is flat-out brilliant in this interview and would put ANY of the half-baked Republican candidates on the floor, gasping for breath in a real debate. I would defy anyone to name one president in the last 100 years who could comfortably say, “multilateral fora” and know what he was talking about. He is truly a man of his times and the perfect president for this millenium, but in intellect, he’s probably only equaled by Thomas Jefferson. I especially liked his response when Fareed read him a criticism from Romney. That “Ah, yes.” spoke volumes.

        • 75 JojoRaze
          January 19, 2012 at 5:42 pm

          Jackie, this interview, and all the interviews PBO gives always demonstrates his brains. He just shows he’s smart and aware of what’s going on…it’s comforting. I really thank God for him daily.

          I love the answer about the aloof part. He basically said, “It’s because I don’t go to parties with the press and the pundit class. But it doesn’t matter whether or not I go to parties or not, the Repubs are haters and obstructionists nothing I say or do will stop their hateration and obstruction.” At least that’s my interpretation.

          I so cosign loving his dismissal of Romney. PBO is basically saying “You are the weakest link, goodbye!”

          I totally think if the Founding Fathers all raised from the dead and watched American politics today for two months, after being updated by textbooks etc about politics for the last 150 years since they died out, they would totally say PBO is the best thing going for American politics and marvel how people irrationally hate him. I think they’d first faint that a black guy is president, but then they’d love him to bits.

    • 77 GGail
      January 19, 2012 at 5:58 pm

      I appreciate the questions and President Obama’s answers.

  17. 78 Jax6655
    January 19, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    Good afternoon TOD,

    I know there’s a lot going on in the news but I wanted to let folks know about this. The Cleveland Plain Dealer pulled a comic that highlighted mistaken identification in police line-ups.

    “The Plain Dealer decided not to publish a Non Sequitur comic Friday that depicts a bunny looking at a police lineup of other animals and saying, “They all really do look alike to me.” In its place was an editor’s note that said the strip “was deemed objectionable.” Art Costanzo, 63, a self-professed lifetime reader of the paper, writes in a letter to the editor, “The only thing I found controversial was the fact that you did not publish it.”

    “The artist was asking readers to consider how much human judgment is clouded by fear, and how quick we are to generalize. Friday’s strip would have been an appropriate catalyst for conversation leading up to Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Dr. King asked us to examine the way we think about each other, and to seek the roots of our prejudice.”

    According to sources, no other papers pulled the comic.


    Furthermore, according to David Protess, president of the Chicago Innocence Project: (warning HP link) http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-protess/comic-strip-censored-for-_b_1215963.html?ref=media&ir=Media

    “Virtually every study has found that whites can’t get it right when asked to choose the correct photo from an array of possible black assailants. Same goes for Asians, though interestingly, people of color are generally more accurate in selecting white perpetrators.”

    Please join me in writing to the editor at the PD and telling him what a cowardly thing it was.

    Oh, here’s a link to the comic: http://www.gocomics.com/nonsequitur/2012/01/13
    (I’d advise you to avoid the comment section though because . . . it’s full of trolls)

    Thank you.

    • January 19, 2012 at 5:23 pm

      I actually don’t object to pulling the ad. The implication – since they specified that this was for MLK day – is that the line up would have been full of black people. There’s just no need for that comic. It says nothing about MLK day, his life, the progress made to date – it just feeds a stereotype.

      I might be overly sensitive – and I had to think long and hard about this one – but my gut tells me that it wasn’t a comic with good intentions. Everything about could have a double-meaning – even the use of bunnies.

  18. 80 defytheodds
    January 19, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    Early tourism industry reaction

    Hilton Worldwide CEO Chris Nassetta praises President Obama’s tourism announcement: “After President Obama’s speech today, we are encouraged to see significant progress being made on welcoming more visitors to the United States in a responsible and secure way. The potential exists to begin adding hundreds of billions of dollars to the economy and creating more than one million U.S.-based jobs in the next decade. This is a stimulus that everyone can agree on, regardless of political affiliation, and doesn’t cost the taxpayer a dime since the expenses are offset by visa application fees and other charges. We look forward to continuing to work together as an industry and a nation on this critical issue.”

  19. January 19, 2012 at 3:33 pm

    WASHINGTON, D.C.—Deputy Secretary of the Interior David J. Hayes, National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis, and Trust for the National Mall President Caroline Cunningham today announced a $7.5 million donation from philanthropist David M. Rubenstein to repair damage to the Washington Monument caused by a magnitude 5.8 earthquake last August. The gift matches federal funds approved by Congress in December and completes the funding necessary for the overall repair project.

    Rubenstein’s donation will be made through the Trust for the National Mall, the National Park Service’s philanthropic partner whose Campaign for the National Mall will raise $350 million over five to seven years towards the $650 million needed to restore the National Mall.


  20. 83 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    January 19, 2012 at 3:34 pm

    Former Indianapolis Colts Head Coach Tony Dungy, Senator Richard Lugar and Community Leaders Help Walgreens Celebrate Grand Re-Opening of Indianapolis Stores


    While the article mentions the pilot program started in Chicago; it make NO mention that it was part of FLOTUS’s “Let’s Move!” initiative.

  21. January 19, 2012 at 3:38 pm

    Great stuff on Al Giordano’s Facebook page today. Here’s on conversation I found enlightening:
    Al Giordano
    Here’s the flip side of “progressive daddy issues” with the president. Just like they blame him for anything bad, now they’re crediting him for stopping the Keystone Pipeline disaster. But the credit really belongs to local people along its route who organized, packed hearings, networked, and then joined together to train themselves for disciplined, creative, message-focused actions of nonviolent civil disobedience in Washington. Kudos to him for respecting their organizing and doing the right thing, but he didn’t do it. They did!
    [Sean M] Obama could have chosen to ignore those organizers and sign it anyway, so I think both the president and the organizers deserve credit for temporarily stopping this thing.

    Al Giordano It’s a teaching moment, Sean. If those who scream so loud over losses of civil liberties organized like the Keystone opponents did, they’d get similar results. To turn a president in a democracy one has to turn public opinion first.

    Allan Brauer And real credit goes to the GOP Congress, which forced the short time window on the administration, thereby giving the Obama administration an easy out. If you read the president’s statement, it’s about State lacking the time to complete a proper review.

    Al Giordano That’s another thing about an organized people. The enemy freaks out, overreacts, jumps the gun, and moves hastily and off balance. The mere fact of being organized causes a chain reaction of supporting events, many of them unwitting.

    [Richard B] Bill McKibben’s evolution from writer to organizer has been fascinating to watch. Starting with his book, The End of Nature, he has been one of those brave souls who have tried to fix things, waited for something to happen, and when his first effort wasn’t enough, pushed on to the next level. I have heard him say that his students were especially important: he had them reading the usual gloom-and-doom stuff, and one day they said to him, OK, what are we (and you) going to do about this! Reading isn’t enough. There’s a great story in the Boston Globe this week on the changes that McKibben has been through in his fight to stop climate change. Highly recommend. http://www.bostonglobe.com/magazine/2012/01/22/bill-mckibben-man-who-crushed-keystone-pipeline/HkXTD01Z6bXLvibbf8piGK/story.

    Al Giordano He’d be great, Richard, if he didn’t think windmills were worse than Vermont Yankee. [Nuclear Power Plant]

    • January 19, 2012 at 3:41 pm

      Ok, Tien, how does one get to read Al’s Facebook page? I’d love to take a look at it.

    • January 19, 2012 at 5:27 pm

      Tien, I’m convinced that reading anything Al Giordano writes raises your IQ. He’s truly brilliant, never says anything he doesn’t truly believe and can back up.

    • 90 JojoRaze
      January 19, 2012 at 5:48 pm

      I agree with Al on everything he said her and Allan, too. PBO wants us to organize more and protest things that give him space to be more to the left. If we don’t he has no leverage in Congress. Gitmo is a prime example of this. PBO said we’ll build a prison in Illinois, his home state. “See, if I ain’t scared, you don’t have to be.” The people in the town wanted the prison for the jobs but the left did nothing to help him create the climate to make this palatable. And then, when it failed and NDAA came along, they blame the president after they did nothing even as polls said 70% of Americans don’t want people tried here. I also note how everyone in NY from Schumer to Bloomberg fearmongered over the trials being held here in NY which made emptying Gitmo untenable. And yet to Greenwald and Sirota, it’s all PBO’s fault.

  22. January 19, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    chips, you’re too quick for me! I can’t keep up! Hiya TOD! How’s it going?

  23. 92 Ladyhawke
    January 19, 2012 at 3:44 pm


    By Gary Ater


    Let’s get real. When one looks at running for president in 2012, what sane individual, even in the GOP, would really want to become president with what they would have to deal with if they actually won ?

    Let’s look at what they would inherit if a GOP candidate became president today:

    >>> An economy that their own party had driven into the ditch over the past 2 decades.

    >>> A country that due to their previous de-regulations, caused the worst economic disaster since 1929.

    >>> A high unemployment rate that is not where it should be due to the GOP blocking of all the possible bills in congress that would have helped the nation’s economy.

    >>> A nation where the conservatives on the US Supreme Court have said that corporations are “people”.


    Read more examples at the link below….


    • 93 yardarm756
      January 19, 2012 at 4:25 pm

      The operant words are ‘common sense’. What we are seeing in this country is what you have after the scab of racism has been picked. The fear and irrational hatred for ‘the other’ is making seemingly wise people do stupid things. They don’t really care about running the country. They just want ‘the other’ out. They’ll worry about the country later. How difficult could that be anyway. If ‘the other’ could do it, anyone can. Right?

  24. 94 GGail
    January 19, 2012 at 3:51 pm

    I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE all of the Time Magazine pics, but I especially LOVE the ones of POTUS kissing FLOTUS. aaahhhhhhhh, so sweet.
    I have sent the Rick Perry knock out cartoon far and wide today – PRICELESS and so true!
    I am so happy for Detroit and the auto industry. People are corporations 😀

  25. January 19, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    We already know this, but Benen borrowed a little chart that he’s sharing with us re Reps vs. Dems viewing choices.


  26. 96 lamh34
    January 19, 2012 at 4:04 pm

    I Just don’t think that Newts ex-wife’s interview will hurt newt much in the primary. It’s too convient that she interviews now. Plus how much moral high ground does this woman really have when she the woman he was working on when his first wife was dying. Newt’s already in the dumps w/women voters, and I hate to say it, but I wouldn’t be surprised if male voters arent’ superficial enough to say well look at her vs new wife????

    Also, I can so see the scenario where this just really pisses newt off even more and cause newt to jus blow the whole process up.

  27. January 19, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    Ooh la la .. on those last two photos of our President and the lovely Michelle on her birthday! Love it.

  28. 99 Bobfr (aka Our4thEstate)
    January 19, 2012 at 4:36 pm

    Yes We Can … DO More Together – We Must! #LandslideOBAMA2012 #LandslideDEMS2012

  29. 111 Bobfr (aka Our4thEstate)
    January 19, 2012 at 4:43 pm


      January 19, 2012 at 5:01 pm


  30. January 19, 2012 at 5:00 pm

    G’Day Peeps…ever since the President went to Australia I love saying that greeting!

    So who will be watching the clown show tonight? There’s almost certain to be fire works tonight since this is the last debate before voting on Saturday.

  31. 116 SueBee
    January 19, 2012 at 5:00 pm

    Those birthday pics..*swoons*. My parents just celebrated their 42nd wedding anniversary and they still have that kind of love..makes me feel like there is hope for me.:) You can tell that Michelle wasn’t a fan of the camera catching them smooching…still makes me swoon though 😉

  32. January 19, 2012 at 5:07 pm

  33. January 19, 2012 at 5:09 pm

  34. January 19, 2012 at 5:12 pm

  35. 126 lovingandlaughing
    January 19, 2012 at 5:16 pm

    Okay, today I FINALLY set up a twitter account! I am now awonderouslife on twitter.

  36. 133 vitaminlover
    January 19, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    Wow!!! Is our First Couple romantic or what?

  37. January 19, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    Ppp poll has Gingrich up 6 on Robney
    Gingrich 34
    Robney. 28

    • 138 anniebella
      January 19, 2012 at 5:50 pm

      Who is the ones really doing the dividing Mitt? The millionaires and billionaries like you who want to grab everything for yourself and stomp on the poor and middle class.

  38. 145 Marlz (@marjgra)
    January 19, 2012 at 5:48 pm

  39. January 19, 2012 at 5:52 pm

    President Obama’s call for increasing the speed of the visa process for tourists who want to visit the United States won support Thursday from the aviation industry.

    The Washington, D.C.-based trade association Airlines for America (A4A) said Obama’s announcement in Florida showed he realized how important aviation is to the nation’s economy.

    “There is clearly pent-up demand for increased U.S. visitation,” the organization said in a statement. “If U.S. airlines are able to operate in an environment that is conducive to international expansion, the carriers will be able to add service, jobs and further drive overall economic growth of the country.”


  40. 149 carolyn
    January 19, 2012 at 5:53 pm

    Wondering here…….do you suppose the teapartier House of Reps realizes how irrelevant they have made themselves? Should NOT be so.
    The President has kept on working while they’ve gone on vacation….not “recess”…and the president has found constitutional ways to work around them for the American people. Until they learn to co-operate they will not be relevant and will not get anythihg meaningful done.. They are spitting in the wind.

  41. 150 FiredUpInCA
    January 19, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    Herman Cain has made his endorsement:

    Herman Cain announces he endorses ‘the people’ at Southern Republican Leadership Conference

  42. 152 Linda
    January 19, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    Jenny Sanford is a liar.

  43. 153 Bill
    January 19, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    I cannot believe Tweety is interviewing Jenny Sanford, the wife of Mark Sanford. She does not like Newton Leroy, but has not decided on her choice. She thinks any of them could beat PBO easily. She is blaming the press for everything. I can understand why her husband went hiking the Appalachian Trail.

  44. 158 dotster3
    January 19, 2012 at 5:59 pm

    Whatever sympathy I might have felt for Jenny Sanford, which wasn’t much, maybe a little, has now dissipated completely. She is not likable, in the least. And she’s a typical Republican, lying through her teeth, refusing to admit what is right in front of her face. There’s no racism in South Carolina, she said, among other preposterous, defensive statements. She’s not voting for Mankini, but “any of the other 3 are excellent candidates who could easily beat President Obama”, she said. She’s snippy and unappealing. Argentina is making a bit more sense.

  45. 161 FiredUpInCA
    January 19, 2012 at 6:02 pm

    Here’s Mitt the Uniter talking about the President:

    “He’s in Hawaii right now. We’re in the cold, in the rain, in the wind because we care about America,” Romney said, speaking in the parking lot of a grocery store. “He just finished his 90th round of golf…

    He dismissed the Obama administration’s contention that they stopped the recession from getting worse.

    “The other day President Obama said, you know, it could be worse,” Romney said. “Sounds like Marie Antoinette, ‘Let them eat cake.’ ”

  46. January 19, 2012 at 6:03 pm

  47. January 19, 2012 at 6:18 pm

    In the “a broken clock is right twice a day” category, I present The Turtle:

    Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has called on senate Democrats to “shelve” the controversial internet piracy bill PIPA:

    “While we must combat the on-line theft of intellectual property, current proposals in Congress raise serious legal, policy and operational concerns. Rather than prematurely bringing the Protect IP Act to the Senate floor, we should first study and resolve the serious issues with this legislation. Considering this bill without first doing so could be counterproductive to achieving the shared goal of enacting appropriate and additional tools to combat the theft of intellectual property. I encourage the Senate Majority to reconsider its decision to proceed to this bill.”

  48. 172 nospin
    January 19, 2012 at 6:23 pm

    bringing over from the previous thread. I received the attached email earlier today from whitehouse.gov.

    I absolutely love this idea. From the White House:

    What Makes Your Hometown a Great Place to Visit?

    On Thursday, January 19th, the President will travel to Disney World where he will unveil a strategy that will significantly help boost tourism and travel, an important sector in the U.S. economy.

    We’re asking Americans across the country to add their voices to the discussion on tourism in the U.S. and share what makes their city or town a great place visit. Use the form below to tell us what’s great about where you live.

    If you’re on Twitter, you can also use the hashtag #visitUS to share photos and tell us why your city or town is a great place to visit.


  49. January 19, 2012 at 6:31 pm

    Cain to deliver tea bagger response to SOTU!


  50. 187 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    January 19, 2012 at 6:38 pm


  51. January 19, 2012 at 6:39 pm

    Imagine a President visiting Disney? Jeez.

  52. 193 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    January 19, 2012 at 6:44 pm

    Yes, Karen Bass is on Rev Al. I like her — clear, concise, knowledgable; has PBO’s back and not afraid to say it. The one time I heard her disagree with PBO, she did it with RESPECT.

  53. January 19, 2012 at 6:45 pm

    Good Day Todsville:-)

    I don’t know if anyone seen this video…..(I love Betty White)

    (hope Chips don’t mind..there’s some cuss word)…….Chips..If u have to..ready for my punishement

  54. January 19, 2012 at 6:46 pm

    Clean coal plant finished-

    The Department of Energy is working with industry to keep the United States at the forefront of carbon capture, utilization, and storage technologies. An innovative clean coal demonstration project in Texas, supported by the Department’s Office of Fossil Energy, recently took a big step forward.   

    The Energy Department announced that CPS Energy of San Antonio will purchase approximately 200 megawatts of power annually from the Texas Clean Energy Project (TCEP) when the facility is complete in 2015. The $2.4 billion plant will receive $450 million in funding from the Department’s Clean Coal Power Initiative; of this, $211 million comes from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

    This is the first purchase in the United States of low-carbon power from a power plant that uses carbon capture technology.


  55. January 19, 2012 at 6:47 pm

    LOL did I say I love Betty White….LOL

    • 203 anniebella
      January 19, 2012 at 7:21 pm

      Betty was so funny and doopy as Rose on Golden Girls. At her age she still is very funny. She is a treasure.

  56. 204 lmrj
    January 19, 2012 at 7:02 pm

    Found this to be pretty funny!

  57. 205 ML
    January 19, 2012 at 7:07 pm

    This article perfectly expresses my feelings about Bill Maher. http://emiliawahoo76.blogspot.com/2012/01/dream-team.html#comment-form

  58. 206 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    January 19, 2012 at 7:09 pm

  59. 208 JojoRaze
    January 19, 2012 at 7:11 pm

    The DNC got jokes! Hilarious DNC e-mail pic on Twitter needling Romney about his Believe in America slogan

  60. 209 Linda
    January 19, 2012 at 7:15 pm

    Warren is on track to raise more than $1,000,000 with today’s effort. At 4:30 PM ET, her total stood at $899,340.

  61. January 19, 2012 at 7:19 pm

    Crikey, this thread is getting long, time for a new one:


    Will add more to it soon.

  62. 211 anniebella
    January 19, 2012 at 7:40 pm

    FLOTUS thank everyone who served their community on MLK day, and she thank everyone for the birthday wishes. She said that it’s been a nice week. Looking at those two pictures of her and POTUS I imagine it was a very nice week.

  63. January 20, 2012 at 12:41 am

    What beautiful pictures of our 1st couple.

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