Rise and Shine

On This Day: President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama watch the fireworks over the National Mall from the roof of the White House, July 4, 2010 (Photo by Pete Souza)


Today (All Times Eastern)

11:0: The President speaks at a naturalization ceremony for active-duty service members and civilians


6:0: The President and First Lady attend the “Salute to the Military” July 4th celebration at the White House; the President delivers remarks


8:10: USO concert for troops and military families featuring recording artist Pitbull


9:10: Fireworks show on the National Mall




David Horsey: Unsung Civil Rights Heroes Fought And Died For Our Freedom

On the Fourth of July, as on all national holidays, we are encouraged to think about the men and women who have fought and died for our freedoms; the likes of Washington, Lincoln and all the soldiers who have fought in our wars. This standard roster of heroes is venerable, but it is far from complete. … in 1955, a weary black woman refused to give up the seat she had taken in the white section of a bus in Montgomery, Ala. In 1957, one lone black girl walked into Little Rock’s Central High School amid the jeers of a furious mob.

In 1958, a few young blacks sat down at the whites-only counter at the Dockum Drug Store in Wichita, Kan., and refused to leave. In 1961…. …. Rosa Parks, John Lewis, James Meredith, Fannie Lou Hamer, Andrew Goodman, James Chaney, Michael Schwerner, Medgar Evers and so many others showed bravery as great as that of any soldier. They stood firm, sacrificed and, in many cases, died for our freedom. This Independence Day, think of them and stand in awe.

More here



Eugene Robinson: This July 4, Governing In The Spirit Of Revenge

As we celebrate the Fourth of July, who can argue that our democracy is working the way the Founders intended? And who can deny that most of the blame for dysfunction must fall to the Republican Party? … Whatever the motivation, Republicans have paralyzed our government in a way that would have shocked and depressed the Founders. Compounding the outrage, Republicans have the temerity to criticize Obama for using his executive powers in the national interest. This is dangerously close to nihilism.

Think about this for a moment. Urgently needed legislation has been passed by the Senate, is supported by the president and has enough votes in the House. Yet it goes nowhere, as chaos on the border worsens and thousands of children remain in limbo. Is this what the Founders had in mind? Today’s Republican Party opposes the Affordable Care Act, so it refuses to work with the Obama administration in legislating technical fixes that would make the law work more smoothly. Is this in any sense patriotic? the GOP cares more about ideology, reelection and opposing Obama’s every initiative than about the well-being of the nation. It is scant comfort, on Independence Day, to remember that the republic has survived worse.

More here


President Obama’s interview with Marketplace



Full interview and transcript here


Danny Vinik: Recovery Summer May Finally Have Arrived Finally, A Jobs Report Routs Expectations

For the past few years, it was like clockwork: A disappointing summer of job growth would give way to a much stronger winter. Economists would hesitantly forecast that the economy was about to kick into second gear. Then the summer would come and the disappointing data would return. But finally, it looks like we are ready to break that trend: The economy added 288,000 jobs in June, soundly beating economists’ expectations of 211,000, and the unemployment rate fell to 6.1 percent.

… Consumers, businesses and investors are all showing renewed confidence in the economy. On Monday, pending home sales hit a four-year high. Automakers also reported surprisingly high sales. Many economists even expect wage growth in the second half of the year. The June jobs report only adds further support for the recovery summer. … There are few commentators on Twitter who parse the jobs report better than economist Justin Wolfers. In recent years, it was often him who urged caution as the economy picked up in the winter and would shoot down any reporters showing too much optimism. But even he couldn’t find anything to be pessimistic about in this jobs report:


More here



NYT: Hiring Is Strong And Jobless Rate Declines To 6.1%

American companies are finally getting comfortable enough with the economy’s prospects to add new workers at a very healthy pace, after years of saying they lacked the confidence to hire people aggressively during a fitful recovery. Employers added 288,000 jobs in June, the Labor Department said Thursday, the fifth month in a row that hiring has topped the 200,000 mark. The unemployment rate dipped to 6.1 percent last month, the best reading since September 2008, when the collapse of Lehman Brothers turned what had been a mild recession into an economic rout. Factoring in June’s increase and upward revisions for estimated hiring in April and May, employers added an average of 231,000 workers a month in the first half of 2014, the best six-month run since the spring of 2006. “We’re clicking on all cylinders in terms of job growth,” said Dean Maki, chief United States economist at Barclays. Just as significant as the headline figures,

Mr. Maki said, is that June’s hiring was broad-based, as industries as varied as health care, manufacturing, financial services and retailing all added workers. “Every major sector showed job growth in June, including the private service sector, where the bulk of jobs in the U.S. are created,” Mr. Maki said. In an important turnabout, there were encouraging gains not just in well-paid white-collar professions, or in low-wage sectors like retail and restaurants, but also in the vast middle tier of jobs that enable workers to gain a foothold in the middle class. For example, manufacturers hired 16,000 workers, while transportation companies added 17,000 employees and the long-dormant public sector saw an addition of 26,000 positions.

More here




Sally Kohn: Hobby Lobby: Sex, Lies, And Craft Supplies

“Birth control is cheap.” Hobby Lobby was about four forms of contraception that are not cheap (PDF). Plan B costs $35 to $60. Ella costs around $55. An IUD costs anywhere from $500 to $1,000. As the Notorious RBG (known to some as Ruth Bader Ginsburg) pointed out in her scathing 35-page dissent, “the cost of an IUD is nearly equivalent to a month’s full-time pay for workers earning the minimum wage.” Similarly, for someone making $7 an hour — even if she’s lucky enough to get 40 hours of shifts in a week, which is rare — the cost of Plan B or Ella is roughly 10 percent of her take-home pay before taxes.

“Whatever, Hobby Lobby still covers 14 other kinds of contraception.” Funny thing, it actually provided all 20 until the lawyers behind the Hobby Lobby case contacted the company to see if they wanted to file suit. It was only then that the company discovered its insurance plan covered Plan B, and the two IUDs at issue—and then stopped covering them. And then Hobby Lobby sued the government for making it do something that up until that moment it had been doing on its own. Even today, Hobby Lobby’s 401(k) plan still invests not only in the manufacturers of these forms of birth control but also companies that make drugs used in medical abortions.

More here



Irin Carmon: Female Justices Issue Searing Dissent Over New Contraceptive Case

The fierce disagreements dividing the Supreme Court over this week’s Hobby Lobby decision were laid bare Thursday in a searing dissent from Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who said the Justices’ decision in a separate contraceptive case “undermines confidence in this institution.” The dissent was signed by all three female Justices. The dissent was in an order to grant an emergency request from Wheaton College, an evangelical college in Illinois. At issue is the “accommodation” the Obama administration worked out for religiously-identified non-profits: Sign a form certifying your objection, and the insurer will provide the coverage directly, without the objecting organization having to pay.

As of now, 122 non-profits have sued, claiming that signing the opt-out form for someone to get contraception violates their religious liberty. “Let me be absolutely clear: I do not doubt that Wheaton genuinely believes that signing the self-certification form is contrary to its religious beliefs,” Sotomayor wrote. “But thinking one’s religious beliefs are substantially burdened … does not make it so.” She added, “Not every sincerely felt ‘burden’ is a ‘substantial’ one, and it is for courts, not litigants, to identify which are.”

More here




Jeanna Smialek: Trade Gap In U.S. Shrinks More Than Forecast On Record Exports

The trade deficit in the U.S. narrowed more than forecast in May on record exports, signaling a pickup in global growth that will boost American manufacturers. The gap shrank by 5.6 percent, the biggest drop since November, to $44.4 billion from the prior month’s $47 billion, Commerce Department figures showed today in Washington. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey of 69 economists called for a contraction to $45 billion.

Sales to foreign customers climbed 1 percent on growing demand for autos and parts, petroleum products and aircraft engines. Economic expansions abroad that are gaining traction will probably continue to invigorate demand for American goods. A narrowing deficit would mean trade becomes less of a drag on gross domestic product in the second quarter after the world’s largest economy contracted in the first three months of 2014.

More here



Lucia Graves: One Big Thing Everyone Is Missing In Hobby Lobby

The ruling is not just about sex, it’s about health. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, in her scathing dissent of the Supreme Court’s 5-4 ruling in the Hobby Lobby case this week, made an important point about women’s health that’s been almost entirely overlooked elsewhere: For many American women, the birth-control pill has nothing to do with controlling births. It’s a life-saving medicine. “The coverage helps safeguard the health of women for whom pregnancy may be hazardous, even life-threatening,” wrote Ginsburg. “And the mandate secures benefits wholly unrelated to pregnancy, preventing certain cancers, menstrual disorders, and pelvic pain.”

The decision, which found that closely held corporations may refuse for religious reasons to cover contraceptives in their health plans, may affect millions of women who suffer from a variety of medical conditions. These women depend on the pill to regulate their hormones and do everything from ease pain to reduce the risk of cancer. These medical benefits have nothing to do with sex or the prevention of pregnancy, which have become the sole focus of political debate around the decision. Even if these women never have sex once in their lives, they need to be on birth control.

More here


The Nightmare Has Begun. Vote. Vote. Vote.





ThinkProgress: Missouri Governor Vetoes 72-Hour Abortion Waiting Period: ‘This Is Insulting To Women’

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon (D) rejected a measure on Wednesday that would have required women to wait three full days before being allowed to have an abortion procedure. His veto prevents Missouri from joining Utah and South Dakota, which are the only two states in the nation that currently have a 72-hour abortion waiting period on the books. But on Wednesday, Nixon explained that he couldn’t approve the bill because it’s unnecessary in light of his state’s existing 24-hour waiting period. “Lengthening the already extensive waiting period serves no demonstrable purpose other than to create emotional and financial hardships for women who have undoubtedly already spent considerable time wrestling with perhaps the most difficult decision they may ever have to make,” the governor said in a statement.

“Expanding the mandatory waiting period presupposes that women are unable to make up their own minds without further government intervention. This is insulting to women, particularly in light of what the law already requires.” Nixon also pointed out the measure demonstrates a “callous disregard” for women’s well being by failing to include an exception for victims of rape and incest — which means that women who become pregnant through those crimes would be put through a potentially emotionally damaging wait before they’re allowed to end the pregnancy. “It victimizes these women by prolonging their grief and their nightmare,” the governor noted.

More here




Yahoo: Putin Tells Obama He Wants Better Ties, Equal Treatment

President Vladimir Putin called for an improvement in ties between Russia and the United States on Friday in an Independence Day message to Barack Obama, urging Washington to treat Moscow as an equal partner. Relations between the two presidents and countries are at a low ebb following disagreements over the conflicts in Ukraine and Syria, and over human rights, democracy and defence matters.

“The head of the Russian state expressed hope that … ties between the two countries will develop successfully on the basis of pragmatism and equality despite difficulties and disagreements,” the Kremlin said in a statement, outlining a telegram sent to Obama on the July 4 holiday. “Vladimir Putin also highlighted that Russia and the United States, as countries carrying exceptional responsibility for safeguarding international stability and security, should cooperate not only in the interests of their own nations but also the whole world.”

More here


Good Morning, my fellow Americans. Today, we laugh at the Brits and people who spell words using the letter “u!” 🙂


On This Day

Senator Obama laughs with Sasha before speaking at a campaign stop in Des Moines, Iowa on July 4, 2007


Senator Obama hugs Malia as they watch a Fourth of July parade in Butte, Mont., July 4, 2008


President Obama kisses a baby while greeting military families at the White House on July 4, 2009 (Photo by Pete Souza)

President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama greet military families at the White House on July 4, 2009 (Photo by Pete Souza)

President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama watch the fireworks over the National Mall from the White House on July 4, 2009 (Photo by Pete Souza)


President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama pretend to march to music in the Blue Room of the White House, July 4, 2010, before delivering remarks to military families during a Fourth of July celebration (Photo by Pete Souza)

President Obama greets military families gathered for July 4th festivities on the South Lawn of the White House on July 4, 2010

President Obama greets guests during the Fourth of July celebration on the South Lawn of the White House, July 4, 2010 (Photo by Pete Souza)


A young girl salutes President Obama as he shakes hands along a ropeline with members of the military and their families during the Fourth of July celebration on the South Lawn of the White House, July 4, 2011 (Photo by Pete Souza)

President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama watch fireworks from the roof of the White House, July 4, 2011 (Photo by Pete Souza)


President Obama holds a baby while greeting guests during an Independence Day celebration on the South Lawn of the White House, July 4, 2012 (Photo by Pete Souza)



President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama watch from the White House roof as fireworks erupt over the National Mall, July 4, 2012 (Photo by Pete Souza)


President Obama holds a baby as he greets members of the military and their families during a Fourth of July celebration on the White House’s South Lawn, July 4, 2013


133 Responses to “Rise and Shine”

  1. 1 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 9:57 am

    Good Morning TOD!

    Happy 4th of July USA. YOU have not aged a bit. 238 yrs and at 317.5 Million and growing. Better years are ahead.

  2. 9 Nerdy Wonka
    July 4, 2014 at 9:58 am

    • 10 Cindy
      July 4, 2014 at 10:14 am

      HAPPY 4TH OF JULY Nerdy Wonka!


      Thank you for the AWESOME post! The SCOTUS has opened up a can of worms and they knew what would happen.

      ENJOY this BEAUTIFUL FRIDAY and holiday weekend!!!

  3. 12 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 9:58 am

    Happy Sweet 16th to precious Malia Obama.

  4. 14 vcprezofan2
    July 4, 2014 at 9:59 am

    Good stepping Nena and NerdyW!

  5. 15 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 10:00 am

    A fantastic Thread. Wow. Just Wow.

    Thank you, Ms Wonka. You make Us proud 24/7.

  6. July 4, 2014 at 10:07 am

    Actually, I think July 4 should be renamed Nerdy Wonka Day – Chelsea girl, you’re grade A gold, thank you soooooo much for this wonderful R&S!!!

  7. 31 Cindy
    July 4, 2014 at 10:07 am

    HAPPY BEAUTIFUL 4th of JULY FRIDAY to Chipsticks, Dannystix and all of the TOD FAMILY!!!



    Thank you Malia for loaning your AWESOME FATHER to this country; we love him and we love our BEAUTIFUL FIRST FAMILY.

    My prayer for each of you today, is that you will ENJOY this BEAUTIFUL day with family and friends. Please be safe in all that you set out to do today; barbeques, boat rides, enjoying the sun, and above of, setting off the fireworks.

    It is “INDEPENDENCE DAY” and we the people will not allow the 5 SCOTUS BOZOS to take our FREEDOM!


  8. 32 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 10:08 am

    POTUS’ weekly message for the 4th of July

  9. 35 Vicki
    July 4, 2014 at 10:20 am

    Good morningTOD and a big thank you to nerdy who even on a holiday does not rest. What a tremendous R&S.

    Personally, my holiday plans depend on the weather being reasonable enough so that the dinner and fireworks plan is not ruined.

    Today is a good day to recall that The Founding Fathers fought for Freedom of Religion NOT for one religion to impose its views upon the rest of us.
    SCOTUS this week has sent us down the path to a theocracy, one enforced by an armed citizenry.
    The female Justices are duly alarmed and the rest of us better wake up fast.

    Happy 4th of July, everyone

    • 36 Cindy
      July 4, 2014 at 10:30 am

      Happy BEAUTIFUL 4th of July Vicki,

      I hope your weather cooperates : )

      Yes, we better wake up fast; this is dangerous to have these “5 COWARDS” armed with such power that can destroy what this country was founded on.

      Wishing you and your family a wonderful day of celebration-ENJOY!!!

    • 37 anniebella
      July 4, 2014 at 10:40 am

      I’m glad the founding fathers fought for freedom of religion, I just wish they had fought for freedom for all regardless of the color of their skin.

    • 38 Nerdy Wonka
      July 4, 2014 at 1:48 pm

      Thanks, Vicki.

  10. July 4, 2014 at 10:24 am

    Happy 4th of July TODers! I hope everyone has a wonderful day and weekend. My thoughts are with all our troops and their families. And my sincere hope is that a miracle happens and the Republican Party comes to their senses. In the meantime lets all fight like crazy to ensure a victory for every single Democratic nominee running for election in November 2014!

    July 4, 2014 at 10:26 am


    • 41 Cindy
      July 4, 2014 at 10:34 am


      Thank you! So BEAUTIFULLY stated. Wishing you and your family an ENJOYABLE DAY!

  12. 42 africa
    July 4, 2014 at 10:26 am

    I love, love to see PBO interact with babies and small children. They love him.

  13. 43 africa
    July 4, 2014 at 10:28 am

    My all time favorite of PBO and baby.

    • 44 jacquelineoboomer
      July 4, 2014 at 12:23 pm

      So sweet. I’d stop cryin’, too! (Not that I’m crying, but I could fake it. Ha.)

  14. 45 hopefruit2
    July 4, 2014 at 10:29 am

    G’morning Chips, TOD, lurkers, everyone and congrats Nena on #1 🙂

    Happy 4th of July EVERYONE!!!

  15. July 4, 2014 at 10:34 am

    Mine too Africa. I have played this over and over again so many times.

  16. 47 hopefruit2
    July 4, 2014 at 10:35 am

    I mean….really? This is #2 trend on Twitter this morning….people “shipping” some fellow with PBO? //smh….

  17. 48 debz
    July 4, 2014 at 10:35 am

    Happy 4th of July to all! Happy Sweet 16 to Malia!

  18. 49 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 10:38 am

    Using Google to find birthday well wishes for Malia, I’ve just seen two Malia Ann Obama’s FaceBook and Twitter Accounts.

    I don’t believe that they are real since I have heard their parents say…..No to social media.

    The FaceBook was dated 2012 and the Twitter account dated back to 2010.

    She is a Minor. So how is it possible for someone to do this to a child, let alone to a president’s daughter?

    I don’t get it.

    • 50 anniebella
      July 4, 2014 at 10:45 am

      Nena, I don’t think Malia has a facebook or twitter account.

      • 51 hopefruit2
        July 4, 2014 at 11:41 am

        According to an article I once read, Malia, since turning 15, was given limited access to Facebook (not sure whether she has her own account). The pages that Nena is referring to are likely fan pages.

  19. 52 JER
    July 4, 2014 at 10:42 am

    LIVE NOW: Vice President is in Philadelphia to participate in the morning Celebration of Freedom Ceremony at Independence Hall. http://www.cbsnews.com/liveFeed/widget.shtml

  20. July 4, 2014 at 10:44 am


    11:0 EDT: President speaks at a naturalization ceremony for service members and civilians

  21. 54 Judith Fardig
    July 4, 2014 at 10:44 am

    Love this R&S, NW! Hope everyone’s holiday is marvelous!

  22. 56 GGAIL
    July 4, 2014 at 10:44 am

    Good West Coast 4th of July morning NW, Chipsticks & TOD family.

    Full R&S NW, YAY!! Thank You!

  23. 62 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 10:47 am

    Not to bring a sad news here today. I stumbled to this information pertaining to a great Aunt of president Obama who died just days ago. She was the younger sister of his Maternal grand-mother. This great Aunt was a scholar and she lived out her life in NC. Her name was Margret Payne.


    When Margaret Payne of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, died at the age of 87 last week her obituary highlighted her career as a professor, that she wrote academic articles and that she enjoyed traveling. What it didn’t call out until the last line of the death notice is that one of her survivors, her nephew, happens to be the President of the United States of America.

    “Margaret A. Payne is survived by her brother Charles T. Payne and wife Melanie; her brother Jon V. Payne and wife Susan and friend Margery Duffey. She is also survived by nieces and nephews Richard Payne, Jon Allen Payne, Stacey Gray, Barack Obama and Maya Soetoro.”

    • 63 Nena20409
      July 4, 2014 at 10:51 am

    • 64 Dudette
      July 4, 2014 at 11:57 am

      Thanks for sharing this. Had no I idea she was teaching at my alma mater.
      May she rest in peace.

      • 65 Nena20409
        July 4, 2014 at 12:19 pm

        The press and at the WHPC made a huge deal about POTUS’ Aunt who died earlier this year in Boston. But nothing was nationally said about this Aunt.

        She was survived by two brothers still living.

        • 66 sjterrid
          July 4, 2014 at 2:48 pm

          That’s probably because she’s white, and the media doesn’t want to ruin their image of the president being “foreign”.

    • 67 sjterrid
      July 4, 2014 at 2:36 pm

      Nena, thank you for bringing this news here. It’s sad, but we would never hear about this from our media.

  24. 68 JER
    July 4, 2014 at 11:00 am

    ANOTHER LIVE STREAM: Vice President Biden Now – Philadelphia to participate in the morning Celebration of Freedom Ceremony at Independence Hall. http://6abc.com/live/

  25. 69 anniebella
    July 4, 2014 at 11:06 am

    Happy Birthday America.

  26. July 4, 2014 at 11:24 am

    Ok, tissues required. This Naturalization Ceremony for Active Duty Service Members and Civilians is so moving.

  27. July 4, 2014 at 11:25 am

  28. 73 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 11:26 am

    And so my fellow Americans, Ask Not what your Country can do for you, Ask What you can do for your Country.

    If only we still have a factually based News Media and A GOP party apparatus that puts USA FIRST!

  29. 74 amk for obama
    July 4, 2014 at 11:28 am

    Won the big fight with germans and japanese today.

    Result ? US of A gets to add 20K bucks to its export a/c, courtesy amk.

  30. 83 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 11:36 am

    In MS, McDaniel is announcing that he would challenge Thad Cochran.

    I say: Please proceed.

  31. 84 JER
    July 4, 2014 at 11:38 am

  32. 85 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 11:39 am

    In the 1990s, this guy was instrumental in the harsh and dirty political discourse that is pervasive today. Today, AP has announced his earthly departure.

    • 91 amk for obama
      July 4, 2014 at 11:46 am

      who wouldn’t ?

      My day will come tomorrow. (can’t drink monday to friday since need to pass effin’ breathalyser test every friggin’ day)

    • 92 MadameSoph
      July 4, 2014 at 4:15 pm

      That look like it may be in Big Sur, California. Lucky doggy!

  33. 93 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 11:51 am


    Records show Shelli Marquardt and Cathy Priem married at the Waukesha County Courthouse on June 9. Alex Walker, 19, scribbled his signature on the marriage certificate as one of two adult witnesses to the wedding. The certificate is on file with the Waukesha County register of deeds.

    Laurel Patrick, a spokeswoman for the governor, confirmed Thursday that Walker’s son was present for the event for the lesbian couple. One of the two women, Patrick noted, is a relative of first lady Tonette Walker.

    “Shelli Marquardt is the first lady’s cousin,” Patrick said in a statement. “She is a part of the Walker family who they dearly love.”

  34. 94 amk for obama
    July 4, 2014 at 11:54 am

    froggies vs krauts, whose side are you on?

  35. 96 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 11:59 am

    Perhaps, a bit childish on my account. Germany defeated US. So I am cheering for the Frenchmen today.

  36. 98 Dudette
    July 4, 2014 at 12:02 pm

    Hi Family! Just popped in to wish you all a stupendous day! Be careful if you’re out on the roads and be especially careful around fireworks.
    Have fun! Enjoy!

  37. July 4, 2014 at 12:11 pm


  38. 108 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    Well the mighty German squad machine have netted A Goal.

    C’mon France. Don’t do me wrong. Lets Go…..please.

  39. 109 Dakota
    July 4, 2014 at 12:23 pm

    Good Southwest Morning to everyone and a Happy and Safe July 4th to you all!

    And most of all, a very Happy Sweet Sixteenth Birthday to our First Daughter Malia Obama! May your day be as Blessed and Beautiful as you are!

    • 110 jacquelineoboomer
      July 4, 2014 at 12:30 pm

      Happy Midwest 4th of July to you! Lovely day to celebrate (not to mention celebrating that when we woke up today, Barack Obama was President of the United States! and he will be tomorrow!).

  40. July 4, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    BTW everyone, if PBO wears that Nordstrom, button down, short sleeve, CORAL shirt today we will know he or someone at the WH definitely reads TOD 😀 😀 😀 😀

  41. 119 Nena20409
    July 4, 2014 at 12:29 pm


    BERLIN — A 31-year-old German man was arrested this week on suspicion of spying for a foreign power, and Chancellor Angela Merkel was informed on Thursday, her spokesman said. An official statement from the federal prosecutor’s office did not identify the country involved, but German media, quoting government sources, said that the man had confessed to passing information to the United States.

    Ms. Merkel talked to President Obama by phone late on Thursday, her spokesman Steffen Seibert said. Mr. Seibert would not say if the spying case was mentioned during the call. The daily Süddeutsche Zeitung said that the German man, an employee of the Federal Intelligence Service, which routinely deals with foreign intelligence matters, was originally arrested on suspicion of spying for Russia, which German intelligence officials say has markedly stepped up recruitment of German informants in recent months.


    Where are GG and Snowden today? Would they be speaking out against this? Hmm? Not.

  42. 122 jacquelineoboomer
    July 4, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    I’m a Flame You Can’t Put Out

    Inaugural poet Richard Blanco has updated his website, highlighting poems from students … you may want to check it out on a lazy Fourth of July morning! Here’s the start of one poem from fifth grader Gregory Ortiz:

    When I Get To Work On a Construction Site

    When I get to work on a construction site,
    I will build my mom a house
    And put bright decorations in it, like in a circus.
    I will get everything done on time, like a boss.
    I will work in Boston, my hometown.
    I will shape the house like clay
    And make it big like a mansion
    With long brown wood and white painted walls
    And the smell of flowers
    And a picture of a dog on the wall …

    More at:

  43. 123 amk for obama
    July 4, 2014 at 12:48 pm

    fedex wins first two sets.

  44. 124 desertflower
    July 4, 2014 at 12:50 pm

    Happy 4th of July!

    The New Colossus

    Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,

    With conquering limbs astride from land to land;

    Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand

    A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame

    Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name

    Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand

    Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command

    The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.

    “Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she

    With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,

    Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

    Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,

    I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

    -Emma Lazarus

  45. July 4, 2014 at 12:50 pm

  46. 127 jacquelineoboomer
    July 4, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    Funny the songs you can pick up from teevee commercials playin’ in the background! It’s this kind of a day, isn’t it?

  47. 128 jacquelineoboomer
    July 4, 2014 at 1:01 pm

    Lest we forget …

    • 129 anniebella
      July 4, 2014 at 1:18 pm

      Some people have forgotten that the Indians were here before them. Remember all the talk about how they want their country back, what if the Indians said the same thing.

  48. July 4, 2014 at 1:03 pm

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