Sunday Talk: Killing Santa

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 28-02-2015-05-2008

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This week, your humble diarist was in country, and bore witness as the #LlamaDrama played out (on cable TV)—LIVE!

Hoping to win a Peabody Award (or even a Polk Award), I got back in my limousine, and ordered my driver to take the highway to the danger zone.

Unfortunately, thanks to Obamanet, we were soon caught up in the brutal online debate over #TheDress.

Suffice it to say, I was lucky to make it home alive; my chauffeur was not so lucky.

Now, I didn’t watch my buddy die face down in the muck so that a guttersnipe like David Corn could smear a patriot like Bill O’Reilly—who has served honorably on the front lines of the War on Christmas.

In fact, I’d argue that Corn and his allies have been mounting the most despicable attack on a white Christian man since teh Joos (allegedly) killed Jesus.

They should consider themselves warned: You come at the falafel king, you best not miss.

Open thread: O’Reilly, terrorists and history

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 28-02-2015-05-2008

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What’s coming up on Sunday Kos …

  • Wisconsin Gov. Walker compares protesters to ISIS, by Mark E Andersen
  • Maybe O’Reilly actually believes his own false stories, by Laurence Lewis
  • All-American terrorists, by Susan Grigsby
  • Five questions Americans must answer about Iran, by Jon Perr
  • Janet Yellen gets the need for rising wages. That’s why Republicans are out to get her, by Ian Reifowitz
  • King v Burwell: Interpreting the Affordable Care Act, by Armando
  • Whose history is women’s history, by Denise Oliver Velez
  • These are not the ‘droids you’re looking for, by DarkSyde
  • When will rewarded political malpractice stop, by Egberto Willies

Obama to veto bill letting Congress weigh in on Iran deal

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 28-02-2015-05-2008

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U.S. President Barack Obama speaks next to Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf in the Oval Office of the White House in WashingtonBy Julia Edwards WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama would veto a bill recently introduced in the U.S. Senate allowing Congress to weigh in on any deal the United States and other negotiating countries reach with Iran on its nuclear capabilities, the White House said on Saturday. "The president has been clear that now is not the time for Congress to pass additional legislation on Iran.  If this bill is sent to the president, he will veto it," said Bernadette Meehan, a spokeswoman for the White House's National Security Council. The United States and five other major powers are seeking to negotiate an agreement with Iran to curb its nuclear program in exchange for relief from economic sanctions.

One Week Punt? Lawmakers Seek to Avoid Homeland Security Shutdown

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 28-02-2015-05-2008

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Two-hundred thousand essential Homeland Security employees who have to stay on the job won’t get paid without new funding.

Occupy Oak Flat asks Obama to declare site a national monument

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 28-02-2015-05-2008

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tonto National Forest, Gop stealing from the publicfor private mining corporations

Tonto National Forest

One executive action most conservatives hate is the establishment of a national monument, which the president can do without congressional approval. He/She marks out some land on a map, declares it ecologically or culturally significant, gives it a name, and signs a piece of paper prohibiting most development on the site. Predictably, the heads of exploiters and their political cronies explode.

The action dates to the 1906 Antiquities Act, which was established primarily to protect relatively small, sensitive archeological sites, the first being Devils Tower in Wyoming. When President Theodore Roosevelt used the tool in 1908 to set aside 800,000 acres of the Grand Canyon in Arizona, he took it to a new level, famously declaring, “Leave it as it is. You cannot improve on it.” Of course the territory’s governor, many elected officials, and the land devourers (mining and forest companies) went berserk. TR would use the Act 18 times to establish national monuments, some eventually becoming national parks.

In our day, President Obama has exercised his power to establish or enlarge 16 National Monuments, the most recent being Browns Canyon in Colorado, a former internment camp in Hawaii, and Chicago’s Pullman neighborhood. Now protesters occupying the environmentally and spiritually significant area called Oak Flat, which is part of Tonto National Forest about 60 miles northeast of Phoenix, have called on President Obama to use his pen once again, in order to protect thousands of acres that are about to be desecrated by a copper mining company.

Find out why below the fold.  

T.J. Maxx and Marshalls follow Walmart on $9 pay, but Target says no

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 28-02-2015-05-2008

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Cashiers check out for Thanksgiving Day shoppers at a Target store in Chicago, November 27, 2014. REUTERS/Andrew Nelles (UNITED STATES - Tags: BUSINESS SOCIETY) - RTR4FW8A

Walmart’s decision to raise 500,000 workers’ pay to $9 an hour in April is having a ripple effect in the retail industry, with TJX, the parent company of T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, and HomeGoods, saying it will raise its minimum pay to $9 an hour in June and, for workers who’ve been with the company for six months or more, to $10 an hour in 2016. It’s clear that Walmart’s move was a factor:

“This pay initiative is an important part of our strategies to continue attracting and retaining the best talent in order to deliver a great shopping experience for our customers, remain competitive on wages in our U.S. markets, and stay focused on our value mission.”

Other big box chains are not planning the same move. Target, for instance, doesn’t have any $9 plans.

While having major retail chains raising wages to $9 and ultimately $10 an hour is very good news for workers, it’s not a living wage, especially for the many workers who remain trapped in part-time jobs with unpredictable scheduling that can prevent them from getting second jobs to supplement their income. In short, as positive as this news is, we’re not going to see an end to workers at hugely profitable chains needing food drives or government assistance yet.

How the white imagination of a black threat continues to make justice elusive

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 28-02-2015-05-2008

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Kendrec McDade, Amadou Diallo, Tamir Rice

Kendrec McDade, Amadou Diallo, Tamir Rice

As long as the law allows white men to act on their imagination of a black threat of violence, justice will remain a rare, elusive occurrence in America. It cannot and should not be enough for police or citizens to simply believe, based not on facts, but the possibilities of their own imagination, that they may be in grave danger at the hands of black boys and men who actually posed no threat to them whatsoever.

The threat must be verifiably real, true, actual, factual, or it is, no matter how police unions or the members of the press who do their bidding want to spin it, unjust, through and through, to threaten, assault, or murder based on the disproven reality that a threat could’ve existed because your imagination said so.

The reality is that Kendrec McDade, a completely unarmed and innocent all-state athlete posed absolutely no threat to the police or anyone else the day Pasadena, CA police shot him over and over again after imagining that they both saw and heard Kendrec shoot at them. They only found a cell phone. The white imagination of a black threat was enough in our justice system.

This is not OK.

The reality is that Amadou Diallo, a completely unarmed, hardworking man on his way home from work, posed absolutely no threat to the police who shot at him 41 times on the doorstep of his own home. They only found a wallet. The white imagination of a black threat was enough in our justice system.

This is not OK.

The reality is that Tamir Rice, a sweet 12-year-old boy playing in his neighborhood park, posed absolutely no threat to the police who shot him in less than two seconds of seeing him. Not only was Tamir not armed with a real gun, even the toy pistol he had wasn’t loaded and he never ever pointed it at police or brandished it as they have repeatedly said. If playing with a toy gun is enough to warrant death by police, then they should be banned. The white imagination of a black threat was enough in our justice system.

This is not OK.

The reality is that John Crawford, a gentle young father of two young babies posed absolutely no threat to the police or anyone around him the day police shot and killed him within mere seconds of showing themselves. John only possessed a toy gun that was on the shelf of the Walmart and was literally talking on the phone when he was shot at close range. The white imagination of a black threat was enough in our justice system.

This is not OK.

Please head below the fold for more.

Rand Paul Edges Out Scott Walker in CPAC Poll

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 28-02-2015-05-2008

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Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul edged out WIsconsin Gov. Scott Walker to win his third straight Conservative Political Action Conference presidential straw poll on Saturday.



Kentucky Senator Rand Paul wins straw poll in boost to 2016 presidential prospects

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 28-02-2015-05-2008

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Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference at National Harbor in MarylandSenator Rand Paul won a straw poll of conservative activists on Saturday, giving his potential bid for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016 a boost, and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker came in second in a surprising show of strength. Whether the victory for the libertarian Paul will have long-lasting benefit is unclear as he is among more than a dozen potential candidates jockeying for position. Paul, a 52-year-old Kentucky Republican, outdistanced a host of other potential candidates by taking 25.7 percent of the vote at the Conservative Political Action Conference, a gathering of activists on Washington's outskirts of Washington. Texas Senator Ted Cruz came in third with 11.5 percent of the votes out of a total of 3,007 who registered votes at the CPAC gathering.

For Republicans, a shift to national security ahead of 2016

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 28-02-2015-05-2008

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By Andy Sullivan NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. (Reuters) – If this week was any indication, Republicans could spend much of the 2016 presidential election attacking Democrats as weak on national security, rather than focusing on the economic concerns that have preoccupied voters in recent years. The shift reflects a changing political landscape as the U.S. economy has steadily added jobs while gruesome beheading videos by Islamic State and increasing conflict in countries such as Syria and Libya have revived Americans’ concerns about security threats. Such a focus also provides plenty of opportunities to attack Hillary Clinton, the likely Democratic front-runner who as secretary of state from 2009 to 2013 was the public face of President Barack Obama’s effort to emphasize diplomacy over armed confrontation. At a gathering of conservative activists, potential Republican presidential candidates characterized that approach as naive at best.