Rise and Shine

President Obama waits in the Green Room prior to signing an Executive Order for the White House Council on Women and Girls in the East Room of the White House, March 11, 2009 (Photo by Pete Souza)


Today (All Times Eastern):

10:0: President Obama receives the Presidential Daily Briefing

11:30: Designates the Point Arena-Stornetta Public Lands as a national monument

2:15: Departs White House

3:25: Arrives New York City

5:15: Attends a DNC fundraiser; private residence; New York City

2:15: Delivers remarks and answers questions at a DSCC Event; private residence; New York City

9:10: Departs New York



Freaking Hilarious. Watch Here




LA Times: Obamacare Meeting Goal Of Reducing Number Of Uninsured, Data Indicate

Evidence has begun to resolve one of the odder controversies surrounding Obamacare: The new law appears to be achieving its top goal of reducing the number of Americans who lack health insurance. The dispute over that question is a strange one because the answer would seem to be fairly obvious: Under the Affordable Care Act, the government will spend hundreds of millions of dollars to subsidize families who decide to buy insurance, a product that the vast majority of Americans value highly. Basic economics would seem to say that those subsidies would have to increase the number of people buying insurance. Gallup, which surveyed about 28,000 Americans concerning their health insurance from Jan. 2 to Feb. 28, found that the percentage who say they lack any form of insurance has dropped significantly, from 18% of the U.S. adult population to 15.9%.

That would translate to between 4 and 5 million fewer people without insurance. As the unemployment rate has dropped, some people may have gained coverage at work, but Gallup’s numbers indicate that employer coverage has ticked downward by about 2 percentage points. Increases have come in the share of Americans buying their own insurance and the share covered by Medicaid, which the new law expanded. Those trends are all consistent with what the new law was expected to do. The other new piece of data comes from the McKinsey Co., which has conducted four surveys of people who are eligible to sign up for insurance under Obamacare. McKinsey found that 27% of those who signed up on the law’s new marketplaces in February were previously uninsured, up from 11% in its earlier surveys.

More here




NYT: Little Know Health Act Fact: Prison Inmates Are Signing Up

In a little-noticed outcome of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, jails and prisons around the country are beginning to sign up inmates for health insurance under the law, taking advantage of the expansion of Medicaid that allows states to extend coverage to single and childless adults — a major part of the prison population. State and counties are enrolling inmates for two main reasons. Although Medicaid does not cover standard health care for inmates, it can pay for their hospital stays beyond 24 hours — meaning states can transfer millions of dollars of obligations to the federal government. But the most important benefit of the program, corrections officials say, is that inmates who are enrolled in Medicaid while in jail or prison can have coverage after they get out.

People coming out of jail or prison have disproportionately high rates of chronic diseases, especially mental illness and addictive disorders. Few, however, have insurance, and many would qualify for Medicaid under the income test for the program — 138 percent of the poverty line — in the 25 states that have elected to expand their programs. Health care experts estimate that up to 35 percent of those newly eligible for Medicaid under Mr. Obama’s health care law are people with histories of criminal justice system involvement, including jail and prison inmates and those on parole or probation. “For those newly covered, it will open up treatment doors for them” and potentially save money in the long run by reducing recidivism, said Dr. Fred Osher, director of health systems and services policy for the Council of State Governments Justice Center. He added that a 2009 study in Washington State found that low-income adults who received treatment for addiction had significantly fewer arrests than those who were untreated.

More here




The Detroit News: Dexter Cancer Patient Who Called Health Care ‘Unaffordable’ Will Save More Than $1K

A Dexter cancer patient featured in a conservative group’s TV ad campaign denouncing her new health care coverage as “unaffordable” will save more than $1,000 this year. Julie Boonstra, 49, starred last month in an emotional television ad sponsored by Americans for Prosperity that implied Democratic U.S. Rep. Gary Peters’ vote for the Affordable Care Act made her medication so “unaffordable” she could die. Peters of Bloomfield Township is running for an open U.S. Senate seat against Republican Terri Lynn Land.

The Detroit News and fact checkers last month cast doubt on the accuracy of the TV ad. On Monday, Boonstra acknowledged which health plan she chose, offering the first evidence of cost savings. Boonstra’s old plan cost $1,100 a month in premiums or $13,200 a year, she previously told The News. It didn’t include money she spent on co-pays, prescription drugs and other out-of-pocket expenses. By contrast, the Blues’ plan premium costs $571 a month or $6,852 for the year. Since out-of-pocket costs are capped at $5,100, including deductibles, the maximum Boonstra would pay this year for all of her cancer treatment is $11,952.

More here



Washington Post: Senate Easily Passes McCaskill’s Military Sexual Assault Bill

A bipartisan plan to overhaul the way sexual-assault cases are handled in the military was easily approved by the Senate Monday evening.  The measure written by Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) was approved 97 to 0 — a rare unanimous vote. But Congress has been quick to respond to the rising rate of assault and rape in the ranks. Last year lawmakers voted to revamp the military’s legal system, ending the statute of limitations on assault and rape cases, making it a crime to retaliate against victims who report assaults and requiring the dishonorable discharge or dismissal of anyone convicted of sexual assault or rape.

McCaskill’s proposal goes further by eliminating the “good soldier” defense that takes irrelevant factors such as the service record of the accused into account. In cases where there is a dual jurisdiction because the crime occurred off of a military base, the victim would get a say in whether the case would be handled in a civilian or military court. The proposal would extend protections to students in service academies. It also would require that in every decision on every promotion in the military, that commander’s record on the handling of sexual-assault cases would have to be taken into account. Although it passed easily in the Senate, the proposal’s fate remains unclear in the House.

More here




Simon Shuster: Putin’s Man In Crimea Is Ukraine’s Worst Nightmare

A month ago, when Ukraine’s old regime was just starting to crack under the pressure of a revolution, few people in the country had ever heard of Sergei Aksyonov. He was then a marginal figure even in the local politics of the region of Crimea. His Russian Unity party had only three seats in the regional legislature and no representation anywhere else. But that has not stopped him from taking charge. In late January, as the protesters in Kiev began seizing government buildings, Aksyonov started to form an army on the Crimean peninsula. Now he is the de facto leader of the entire region, a post that has thrust him into the center of the most dire political crisis Europe has confronted in years. From the beginning, the stated aim of his paramilitary force was to defend against the revolutionary wave that was sweeping across Ukraine and, ultimately, to break away from the country entirely.

Its first battalion of 700 men came from the youth group of Aksyonov’s political party, and as he continued calling in the proceeding weeks for a “full scale mobilization,” hundreds of others joined his Crimean self-defense brigades. By Feb. 21, the day the Kiev uprising toppled the Ukrainian government, Aksyonov was in command of several thousand troops. “All of them,” he says, “answer to me.” His rise to power has made him a valuable ally to Moscow and a serious threat to Ukraine and its Western partners. His written appeal to Russian President Vladimir Putin is what opened the door for the Russian occupation of Crimea at the beginning of this month, and on March 4, Putin recognized Aksyonov as the legitimate leader of Crimea, apparently without ever having met the man.

More here



Bloomberg: Ukraine Starts Military Exercises As Russia Warns On East 

Ukraine began military drills as Russian forces tightened their hold on the Crimean peninsula and the Foreign Ministry in Moscow warned of “lawlessness” in the former Soviet republic’s eastern provinces. Ukraine’s armed forces are testing the combat-readiness of troops, the Defense Ministry said today on its website, reiterating the government’s desire for a peaceful end to the standoff in Crimea. Russia, which has vowed to defend the ethnic Russians that dominate Crimea after an uprising in Kiev, accused Ukraine of ignoring radicals in the nation’s east.

More here




Think Progress: Why Obama’s Appearance On ‘Between Two Ferns’ Worked

Usually, Galifianakis is the one making his guests feel incredibly uncomfortable (“I just have never interviewed a 7-year-old before,” he told Justin Bieber when the young star appeared on the show), but that dynamic was mostly flipped with Obama. Yes, Galifianakis did stumble over Obama’s name in the way he does for most guests (‘Bieber’ became ‘Beevers’), but almost immediately Obama was the one making Galifianakis feel awkward. “If I ran a third time, it’d be sort of like doing a third hangover movie,” Obama dug. “It didn’t really work out very well, did it?”

Obama took a risk going on a show as weird as Between Two Ferns; it could have made him look weird and awkward and bumbling. But he hacked it, flipping that dynamic back around on his host. This also made it easy for Obama, who is clearly trying to enroll the youth stoner demographic though his signature health care law, to make his plug for Healthcare.gov. Obama’s presidency has overlapped with the rise of the meme, and both he and Michelle have taken advantage of this. They have both made frequent appearances on late night shows (Obama is one of the politicians who’s slow jammed the news), and his administration is responsible for the pajama boy meme and the McKayla Maroney ‘not impressed’ face picture. Obama even embraced the existing meme of his ‘Not Bad’ faceduring a Reddit “ask me anything.”

More here



Katie Valentine: Neil DeGrasse Tyson To Science Deniers: ‘Science Is Not There For You To Cherry Pick

Neil deGrasse Tyson, astrophysicist and host of National Geographic and Fox’s new show Cosmos, said Sunday that he thinks the media needs to stop providing false balance in stories on scientific subjects like climate change. Host of CNN’s Reliable Sources Brian Stelter asked Tyson whether he thought the media had a responsibility portray science correctly, particularly when discussing climate change. “The media has to sort of come out of this ethos that I think was in principle a good one, but it doesn’t really apply in science,” Tyson said. “The ethos was, whatever story you give, you have to give the opposing view. And then you can be viewed as balanced.”

Stelter showed a clip of President Obama’s climate speech last year, in which he decried climate deniers by saying the country didn’t have time for a “meeting of the flat Earth society.” Tyson said the president’s reference was a good example of how the idea of “balance” in scientific stories doesn’t make sense. “In the clip you showed of the president — you don’t talk about the spherical Earth with NASA, and then say ‘now let’s give equal time to the flat Earthers,” he said. “Plus, science is not there for you to cherry pick…You can decide whether or not to believe in it but that doesn’t change the reality of an emergent scientific truth.”

More here




Philly Mag: NYT: Christie Turned Twin Towers Wreckage Into “Politically Motivated Gifts”

The New York Times reports this morning that Chris Christie’s administration used wreckage from 9/11 as “politically motivated gifts,” part of a politicization of the Port Authority that is coming under increasing scrutiny from federal prosecutors in the wake of the Bridgegate scandal. For a state that lost hundreds of lives on Sept. 11, the gifts were emotionally resonant: pieces of steel from the ruins of the World Trade Center. They were presented by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to 20 carefully chosen New Jersey mayors who sat atop a list of 100 whose endorsements Gov. Chris Christie hoped to win. At photo opportunities around the mangled pieces of steel, Bill Baroni, Mr. Christie’s top staff appointee at the Port Authority, told audiences how many people wanted a similar remnant of the destroyed buildings, and how special these mayors were.

Mayors lower on the list of 100 — such as Mark Sokolich, of Fort Lee, at No. 45 — received other Port Authority perquisites: an intimate tour of the National September 11 Memorial, or the new World Trade Center construction site, or Port Authority money for jobs programs or new firefighting equipment, even in towns far from the port. Turning wreckage of the twin towers into politically motivated gifts before Mr. Christie’s 2013 re-election was only one example. The authority became a means to reward friends (or hire them) and punish adversaries, and a bank to be used when Mr. Christie sought to avoid raising taxes. Major policy initiatives, such as instituting a large toll and fare increase in 2011, were treated like political campaigns to burnish the governor’s image.

More here



Zach Johnson: Aretha Franklin On President Obama’s “Respect” Flub: “Spelling And Giving It Is A Huge Difference”

Aretha Franklin realizes everyone make mistakes—even the President of the United States. After Barack Obama botched the spelling of “Respect” during the White House’sWomen of Soul Event last week, the Queen of Soul herself released a statement regarding the politician’s flub. “I’m sure the President had much on his agenda and was just a little tired,” Franklin told E! News. “However, spelling and giving it, is a huge difference. The President and I are mutual when it comes to R-E-S-P-E-C-T.”

More here




On This Day:

President Barack Obama greets members of the U.S. Senate youth program at the South Portico of the White House, March 11, 2009. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)


President Obama meets with the Congressional Black Caucus to discuss health care reform in the State Dining Room of the White House, March 11, 2010 (Photo by Pete Souza)

President Obama delivers remarks before a screening of the HBO ten-part World War II miniseries “The Pacific” in the Family Theater of the White House, March 11, 2010. Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg, the two executive producers of “The Pacific”, sit in the front row (Photo by Pete Souza)


First Lady Michelle Obama participates in a “Let’s Move!” and NHL partnership event with Chicago Blackhawks and Washington Capitals players on the South Lawn of the White House, March 11, 2011 (Photo by Samantha Appleton)

President Obama talks with members of the Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks following a ceremony to honor the team’s 2009-10 championship season on the South Lawn of the White House, March 11, 2011 (Photo by Pete Souza)


President Obama talks on the phone with Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai from his vehicle outside the Jane E. Lawton Community Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland, Sunday, March 11, 2012. The President called to express his shock and sadness over the reported killing of Afghan civilians. (Photo by Pete Souza)


First Lady Michelle Obama participates in a “Let’s Move!” Twitter Office Hour in the First Lady’s East Wing Office of the White House, March 11, 2013 (Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

127 Responses to “Rise and Shine”

  1. 1 amk for obama
    March 11, 2014 at 10:37 am


  2. 14 Vicki
    March 11, 2014 at 10:37 am

    Can’t be me, can it?

  3. 21 Nerdy Wonka
    March 11, 2014 at 10:39 am

  4. 22 JER
    March 11, 2014 at 10:43 am

  5. 23 Nerdy Wonka
    March 11, 2014 at 10:44 am


  6. 24 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 10:46 am

    G’morning Nerdy, Chips, TOD, lurkers, everyone, and congrats to AMK on #1 🙂 Thanks NW for yet another amazing R & S roundup! 🙂

  7. 26 debz
    March 11, 2014 at 10:48 am

    Nice R&S. I love the Between Two Ferns interview!

  8. 28 Nerdy Wonka
    March 11, 2014 at 10:48 am

  9. 29 Vicki
    March 11, 2014 at 10:49 am

    Congrats, AMK and to Nerdy for a sumptuous R&S.

    I logged in to reassure anyone in despair about the assaults on Mayor deBlasio of NYC that as one-sided and vicious as the attacks have been on TV there is another side to this battle that is Deliberately Not Covered.

    So, the Media covered Gov. Cuomo holding a dueling event in order to overshadow and drown out the Mayor’s push for pre-K.
    Gov. Cuomo appeared alongside a for-profit charter school mogul who is draining dollars from our public schools and paying herself and her husband close to one million dollars a year.
    That’s the story the 1% media is telling.

    The story they are not telling is that standing next to Bill deBlasio at The Mayor’s rally was Jeff Klein. Jeff is the leader of the “breakaway democrats” who have been ruling along with the Republicans in the NY Senate.

    If Jeff and his co-conspirators leave Cuomo’s Repubs and instead rejoin the Deomocrats, they can return the NY Senate to Democratic and Progressive hands.

    That is the REAL balttle. The banks and real estate interests want the Senate to stay Repub.

    The people voted for MayorDeBlasio.

    Stay tuned, folks.

  10. 33 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 10:49 am

    Let’s make it simpler: ALL anti-Obama stories eventually “flop out.” Whether they’re about the NSA, CIA or ACA…

  11. 34 amk for obama
    March 11, 2014 at 10:50 am

    whose seat is she contesting for?

  12. 41 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 10:52 am

  13. 42 Nerdy Wonka
    March 11, 2014 at 10:53 am

  14. March 11, 2014 at 11:00 am

    Another Great R & Shine…from NW….

  15. 45 JER
    March 11, 2014 at 11:03 am

    Great as usual NW. Thank you.

    • 46 99ts
      March 11, 2014 at 11:25 am

      Thanks for the link to the NJ bridgegate arguments – although the lawyer I am listening to is just Outraged!! that anyone should have to explain their actions/emails

    • 47 Nerdy Wonka
      March 11, 2014 at 11:33 am

      Thanks, JER.

    • March 12, 2014 at 12:18 am

      I have always loved the nonsense, rhythm, and rhymes of Dr. Seuss. Loved reading them out loud to my children and my students. Dr. Seuss was as far away from the Republican ideology as you can get. He wrote a lot about preserving the environment. It saddens me to see the Conservatives using his books to skewer our side. They are transferring my thoughts to their craziness so it will be hard for me to be able to read those books to my grandchildren.

  16. 49 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 11:04 am

    MITCHELL REPORTS?!?!? I think I’m going to have to unfollow Rozen. There was a time when I thought her reporting was objective, but I think recently she’s been dragged into the MSM’s bullshit, sensational, “report-first-verify-later” anti-Obama shtick.

  17. March 11, 2014 at 11:06 am

  18. 54 Judith Fardig
    March 11, 2014 at 11:13 am

    Proud of my Senators, Merkley and Wyden, for being among the 30 Progressives staying #Up4Climate last night. Not so proud of the publicity the Portland pissed-off pussycat got for prompting a 911 call. Sorry about the alliteration.

    • March 11, 2014 at 11:23 am

      hey Judith…

      is there a list of the Senators who participated in the #Up4Climate

      • 56 Judith Fardig
        March 11, 2014 at 11:29 am

        The following senators are participating: Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), Patty Murray, (D-Wash.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Barbara Boxer, (D-Calif.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Benjamin Cardin (D-Md.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Mark Udall (D-Colo.), Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Angus King (I-Maine), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.).

        Two more jumped in later

  19. 61 MightyPamela
    March 11, 2014 at 11:14 am

    Here. Comes. The. Sun! Rounding the corner on the north side of my building for the first time today. Won’t be long now! 🙂 🙂

  20. 62 daisydem
    March 11, 2014 at 11:15 am

    An excellent Rise and Shine!

  21. March 11, 2014 at 11:17 am

  22. March 11, 2014 at 11:19 am

    I Love President Obama…and it seems that so do so many others…..love it

  23. March 11, 2014 at 11:24 am

    Circling the drain:

  24. 70 amk for obama
    March 11, 2014 at 11:26 am

  25. 71 amk for obama
    March 11, 2014 at 11:31 am

  26. 74 Nerdy Wonka
    March 11, 2014 at 11:36 am

    Did you guys hear of the cat that held a family hostage? 😆

    An Oregon family were forced to dial 911 after their 22-pound pet cat went berserk and held them hostage in their own home.
    Lee Palmer and partner Teresa Barker were holed up in their Portland bedroom Sunday after bad mog Lux scratched their 7-month-old child in the face before seriously freaking out. Even their pet dog fled to safety, terrified that the puss would cause further damage.
    Phoning for help at 7:55 p.m., Palmer told dispatchers the cat had attacked their child and was now trying to force its way into their room.

    Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/hear-oregon-family-dial-911-pet-cat-holds-hostage-bedroom-article-1.1717444#ixzz2vfXGgSRF

  27. 81 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 11:37 am

  28. 82 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 11:42 am

    Everyone is tweeting this!!

  29. 86 Nerdy Wonka
    March 11, 2014 at 11:47 am

    If you know of anyone, send this their way.

  30. 87 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 11:50 am

    Now that Chuck Todd is tweeting CIA stuff, I’m now convinced that this another MSM-manufactured crap. Of course, Rozen retweeted Todd’s crap…

  31. 89 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 11:58 am

    She’s complaining about the “lame” Q’s Brennan is getting, but she never once complained about the soft-ball questions that Snowden was receiving yesterday – although she retweeted wikileaks and some other pro-Snowden group about the number of screens he was being shown on….

    • 90 debz
      March 11, 2014 at 12:06 pm

      When did all this “spying” on the Senate happen? In the Bush years? When Panetta was there? Or was Brennan spying. Nothing I read makes sense.

      • 91 hopefruit2
        March 11, 2014 at 12:13 pm

        Supposedly Feinstein claims that Brennan’s CIA in 2010 hacked into Senate committee’s computers unauthorized.

  32. 93 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 12:03 pm

    Well folks, Laura Rozen seems to have evolved into a Libertarian hack. Very sad to see a once (and very recently) respected FP reporter succumb to paranoid Libertarian propaganda – and for what? She’s retweeting Wikileaks and Emptywheel – both rabid, hateful outlets and disseminaters of paranoid propaganda – mostly directed at the Obama administration and US Gov’t agencies.

    • 94 dotster3
      March 11, 2014 at 12:09 pm

      And I wish our friendlies on twitter would not retweet her junk, so I don’t have to be exposed to it.

      • 95 hopefruit2
        March 11, 2014 at 12:15 pm

        Well, it’s good that people are made aware of her biased reporting – because I think many people (myself included) once trusted her as an objective unbiased FP reporter. Based on my recent experiences with her (not isolated incidents), I no longer believe this to be true but many people still aren’t aware.

      • 96 MightyPamela
        March 11, 2014 at 1:30 pm


    • March 11, 2014 at 12:30 pm

      Spandan wrote an excellent essay on this Libertarian Scourage


      That many modern day liberals see it fashionable to excoriate President Obama and his national security team for doing things to protect the country that are entirely legal and should be completely non-controversial isn’t a sudden phenomenon, however. The anti-government, libertarian streak among a good chunk of today’s influential liberals is – I believe – the product of a well crafted sales job. A conservative sales job.

      In the conservative world, the freedoms of people and the powers of the government are inversely proportional – as one rises, the other must fall.

      That is exactly what libertarianism is: government as the big, bad boogyman

  33. 98 vcprezofan2
    March 11, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    Thanks Utal! That Shuster article presents a rather scary character – almost makes it seem like he IS going to get away with strolling in, taking over Crimea, and annexing it to Russia. I admit I never know what to really conclude about this mess from one day to the next.

  34. 99 Ladyhawke
    March 11, 2014 at 12:12 pm


    Why Harry Reid Is Going Nuclear On The Koch Brothers



    Reid knows Republicans will rush to the brothers’ defense, and he’s looking forward to it. For Reid, highlighting Democrats’ opposition to the bothers and Republican support for them is a perfect illustration of the Democrats’ 2014 election message. He is challenging Republicans to oppose the Kochs — and loved when McConnell and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie last week gave full-throated defenses.

    “I’m trying to find a Republican — somebody, anybody — who will raise an objection to two brothers trying to buy America,” Reid said. “I’ll settle for even one without much seniority over there. Anybody that will stand up to two individuals who stand for everything I don’t.”


    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/harry-reid-koch-brothers-war-2014-3#ixzz2vffxRCCa

    • 101 Ladyhawke
      March 11, 2014 at 12:23 pm

      Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid



    • March 11, 2014 at 12:31 pm

      Yes, Senator Reid knows exactly what he’s doing and it is totally brilliant. We can expect the Kochs to be poster boys for the Dems right up to 4 Nov 2014, just as Mitt’s 47% got hung around his neck. And this time we didn’t have to hope for a clandestine video to appear. The Kochs’ rap sheet is long and about as anti-American as anything that has ever been described by that rubric.

    • 105 jackiegrumbacher
      March 11, 2014 at 12:59 pm

      LH, it wasn’t too long ago that nobody had heard of the Koch brothers because they operated in the shadows and hid behind a myriad of organizations that they set up to accomplish their take over goals. Now everyone I know understands the extent of their damage to our democratic way of life and they are discussing this openly. At the recent PA Progressive summit, the Koch brothers and their pernicious intentions was the subject of a two-hour long workship–unthinkable two or three years ago. Sunlight and strong bleach are the best deterrents against these creeps. Also publicly shaming any legislators who join ALEC and adopt their pre-written legislation is something we all have to commit to.

      • 106 carolyn
        March 11, 2014 at 1:35 pm

        So glad Sen Reid is doing this and awakening America to the evil that is the Kochs. I have been hoping for quite a few months that Democrats would run against the Koch brothers: inculcate it into people’s minds that every time they vote Republican, they vote for a Koch takeover of the U.S.

  35. 107 amk for obama
    March 11, 2014 at 12:13 pm

    will beliebe it when I see it.

  36. 108 dotster3
    March 11, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    The Between 2 Ferns interview has taken the nation by storm—-it’s everywhere! Isn’t that Barack Obama (sp?) , Community Organizer, the coolest person on the planet? Not just the coolest president. The coolest person who ever existed on the planet.
    And THAT, ladies and gentlemen, is what drives his detractors straight into Crazy Town!

  37. 110 57andfemale
    March 11, 2014 at 12:35 pm

  38. 111 57andfemale
    March 11, 2014 at 12:38 pm

  39. March 11, 2014 at 12:41 pm

  40. 115 amk for obama
    March 11, 2014 at 12:42 pm

  41. 116 amk for obama
    March 11, 2014 at 12:46 pm

  42. 117 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    Did Brennan reject her for a date or something? My goodness….

  43. 118 amk for obama
    March 11, 2014 at 12:47 pm

  44. 119 Ladyhawke
    March 11, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    Press Secretary Jay Carney is at the podium.

    First up question on Senator Feinstein and CIA …..

  45. 120 amk for obama
    March 11, 2014 at 12:54 pm


    Libya’s parliament dismisses Prime Minister Ali Zeidan after a tanker laden with oil from a rebel-held port breaks through a naval blockade.


  46. 121 Nena20409
    March 11, 2014 at 12:54 pm
  47. 123 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 1:03 pm

  48. 126 hopefruit2
    March 11, 2014 at 1:11 pm

  49. March 11, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    My Life as a Retail Worker: Nasty, Brutish, and Cheap

    After veteran reporter Joseph Williams lost his job, he could only find employment in a sporting-goods store. In a personal essay, he recalls his struggles with challenges millions of Americans return to day after day.

    Joseph Williams
    Mar 11 2014, 11:50 AM ET

    My plunge into poverty happened in an instant. I never saw it coming.

    Then again, there was no reason to feel particularly vulnerable. Two years ago, I was a political reporter at Politico, and I spent my days covering the back-and-forth of presidential politics. I had access to the White House because of my reporting beat, and I was a regular commentator on MSNBC. My career had been on an upward trajectory for 30 years, and at age 50 I still anticipated a long career.

    On June 21, 2012, I was invited to discuss race, Republican candidate Mitt Romney, and the 2012 presidential election on MSNBC. I said this:

    “Romney is very, very comfortable, it seems, with people who are like him. That’s one of the reasons why he seems so stiff and awkward in town hall settings … But when he comes on ‘Fox and Friends,’ they’re like him. They’re white folks who are very much relaxed in their own company.”

    The political Internet exploded. Because I’m an African American, enraged conservative bloggers branded me an anti-white racist. Others on the right, like Andrew Breitbart’s Big Media, mined my personal Twitter account and unearthed a crude Romney joke I’d carelessly retweeted a month before. The Romney campaign cried foul. In less than two weeks I was out of a job.


    That’s how I found myself working a retail job at a sporting goods store—the only steady job I could find after six months of unemployment in a down economy and a news industry in upheaval. In a matter of months, I was broke, depressed, and living on food stamps. I had lost my apartment, and ended up living out of a suitcase in a guest bedroom of an extraordinarily generous family I barely knew. My cash flow consisted of coins from my piggybank and modest sums earned from odd jobs: freelance copy-editing, public relations, coordinating funerals, mowing lawns. So when Stretch, the laconic, 34-year-old manager of a chain store I’ll call Sporting Goods Inc. called to tell me I was hired, it was the best news I’d had in a long time. (I have chosen not to name the store or its employees here, because the story is intended as an illustration of what it is like to work in a low-paid retail environment, and not as an expose of a particular store or team.)


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