News and Opinion Based on Facts

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Rise of the Pro-Ignorance Right Wing Puts us All In Danger

By Stephen Pizzo

The nation's simpletons have leapt from the shadows, where they wisely hide, except for distinct and notable moments in human history; the Dark Ages, the Inquisition, late 19th-century Germany and the same country during the 1930s. During such times, when the conditions are just right, like they are now, dumb and dumber leap from the shadows and take center stage, claim their right to lead, and... well the results are history.
I only mention all this because it's true. Tea Party simpletons wrap themselves in prideful ignorance, and treat matters of life and death, like global warming, with dismissive derision. They scoff at the science that explains their very existence as a species. They say there are doubts about all that "science" stuff, but no doubt about the Spirit in the sky to whom they pledge mindless allegiance.
Instead of all that complicated, annoying and often inconvenient "book learnin' stuff, they offer "common sense solutions." Which would be fine, if their solutions were not so uncommonly and provably disastrous.
Here's the problem dealing with these simpletons; We can all argue about how things might turn out if we do this or that now, because this situation or that situation has not played itself out fully. It's much more difficult to argue with what actually happened when our ancestors did this or that back then. Those situations played out, for better or for worse.
Of course simpletons don't care much for all that. They are profoundly nearsighted. Besides, a knowledge of history requires a modicum of curiosity, and simpletons are also a profoundly un-curious lot. If mankind only produced simpletons we'd all still be sitting around in caves reinventing wheels and rediscovering fire.
Which is precisely what separates the enlightened from the simpleton. The simpleton seeks .... well.. simplicity. But hitching one's wagon to the simplest solutions at times of exploding complexity is like trying to navigate a maze with ones eyes closed. No, not a maze.. that's too benign a metaphor for these perilous times. It's more like navigating a mine field with eyes closed -- wearing logging boots while singing God Bless America.
Nevertheless, here they are, simpletons proudly and loudly marching through our 21st-century mine fields, clutching their 2000-year-old guidebook they claim was inspired by a "Prince of Peace," -- but who also cheer like a lynch mob at the mere mention of executions, and cheer at the idea of letting the uninsured die on hospital doorsteps.
Like the cycle that raises cicadas from the dark earth every 13-years, simpletons have risen -- again. History warns what follows. Yet no one seems to be able to figure out how to cram the simpleton genie back in the bottle. It's the Sorcerer's Apprentice come to life for GOP strategists who uncorked the simpleton bottle and now have no idea how to stop them. So, instead, they are running along beside them trying to keep up.

Stephen Pizzo is the author of numerous books, including Inside Job: The Looting of America's Savings and Loans, which was nominated for a Pulitzer.

Fox News Viewers Are Less Informed Than People Who Don't Watch Any News

When Murdoch approached Nixon in 1972 with his idea of a propaganda source masquerading as a geniune news outlet, Nixon reportedly  said, "No one will watch it. People aren't that dumb."
Wrong again, Dick.
Close to 2 million people regularly get their misinformation from a source that is not considered news at all by people who read books and other print media.
2 million out of three hundred million Americans is a small number, but it just goes to show, there IS a sucker born every minute.
This is why odd people such as Cain, Romney and the other idiots that run the "GOP" can get away with their ridiculous statements and outright lies.
Their base is the most uniformed segment of society.

Fox News viewers are less informed than people who don't watch any news, according to a new poll from Fairleigh Dickinson University.
The poll surveyed New Jersey residents about the uprisings in Egypt and the Middle East, and where they get their news sources. The study, which controlled for demographic factors like education and partisanship, found that "people who watch Fox News are 18-points less likely to know that Egyptians overthrew their government" and "6-points less likely to know that Syrians have not yet overthrown their government" compared to those who watch no news.
Overall, 53% of all respondents knew that Egyptians successfully overthrew Hosni Mubarak and 48% knew that Syrians have yet to overthrow their government.
Dan Cassino, a political science professor at Fairleigh Dickinson, explained in a statement, "Because of the controls for partisanship, we know these results are not just driven by Republicans or other groups being more likely to watch Fox News. Rather, the results show us that there is something about watching Fox News that leads people to do worse on these questions than those who don’t watch any news at all."
This isn't the first study that has found that Fox News viewers more misinformed in comparison to others. Last year, a study from the University of Maryland found that Fox News viewers were more likely to believe false information about politics.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Super Committee Fails: How Republican Tax Intransigence Killed It: A Timeline

 The Republicans on the "super committee" have refused to even consider modifying the economy crushing Bush tax cuts for the top 1% of wealthy individuals.
This would anger their corporate sponsors and, they fear, result in less campaign money to feed their "war chests".
It is disgaceful for the  GOP to put  their jobs ahead of the survival of the entire U.S. economy.
At long last, have they NO shame?  mfb
Sarah Ayres, Think Progress

By now we have all heard the latest in the months-long debate over reducing the nation’s deficit — barring a last-minute miracle, the congressional super committee tasked with finding at least $1.5 trillion in deficit reduction will fail to come to an agreement. Cue handwringing by pundits lamenting the inability of both Democrats and Republicans to compromise.
The notion that both sides share in the blame is an easy line for commentators to repeat, but it isn’t true. Time and time again, the only thing preventing an agreement on long-term deficit reduction has been the Republicans’ absolute refusal to consider any tax increases on high-income households as part of the solution. Michael Linden and I created a timeline of major events in the past six months of deficit talks:
  • February 14, 2011: President Barack Obama submits budget for 2012 with about $2 trillion in deficit reduction, half of which come from spending cuts.
  • April 15, 2011: House passes Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) budget, which includes $5.8 trillion in spending cuts along with tax cuts for the richest Americans.
  • May 5, 2011: Vice President Joe Biden begins debt talks.
  • May 11, 2011: Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) says he will not raise debt limit without spending cuts that match how much the limit is raised.
  • June 23, 2011: Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) walks away from debt ceiling talks with Biden after refusing to consider any tax increases. The administration had offered $2.4 trillion in spending cuts for $400 billion in taxes, an 83:17 split.
  • July 7, 2011: Obama and Boehner begin debt-ceiling negotiations.
  • July 9, 2011: Boehner walks away from Obama’s “grand bargain”: $4 trillion in debt reduction comprised of $1 trillion in revenue and $3 trillion in spending cuts, including entitlement reforms.
  • July 19, 2011: The Gang of Six proposes a $4 trillion deficit reduction plan, including $2 trillion in revenue.
  • July 22, 2011: Again, Boehner walks away from negotiations after Obama offers $1.2 trillion in revenues and $1.6 trillion in spending cuts, including entitlements.
  • July 31, 2011: Debt ceiling agreement is reached, cutting $1 trillion in spending immediately and establishing the super committee to reduce deficits by at least an additional $1.2 trillion.
  • October 26, 2011: Democrats first super committee offer is $3 trillion in deficit reduction comprised of about $1.3 trillion in revenues and $1.7 trillion in spending cuts, including cuts to Medicare and Medicaid. Republicans immediately reject it. Republicans’ first super committee offer is $2.2 trillion in deficit reduction, which includes no new tax revenues.
  • November 8, 2011: Republicans’ second super committee offer is $1.5 trillion in deficit reduction. It does include $300 billion in new tax revenue, but in exchange for extending the Bush tax cuts and lowering the top tax rate. The plan would ultimately cut taxes for the wealthy and raise them for everyone else.
  • November 10, 2011: Democrats’ second offer is $2.3 trillion in deficit reduction, consisting of $1.3 trillion in spending cuts and $1 trillion in revenue. The revenue would be split between $350 billion in concrete measures and $650 billion in future tax reform. Republicans reject it.
  • November 11, 2011: Democrats agree to Republicans’ top lines including just $400 billion in revenues and $875 billion in spending cuts, but refuse to accept the GOP’s tax cut for the rich. Republicans reject it and make their final offer: $640 billion in spending cuts and $3 billion in revenues.
What this timeline shows is just how much Democrats have been willing to bend, only to have Republicans reject very generous offers. Back in June, Democrats reportedly offered a mere $400 billion in tax increases as part of a $2.4 trillion deficit reduction package — a 83:17 ratio of spending cuts to tax increases. Republicans said no.
And they haven’t budged an inch since then, stubbornly insisting that any deficit reduction package consist entirely of spending cuts. Even after Democrats on the super committee agreed to the Republican top line of $400 billion in revenues, Republicans refused to make a deal.
Looking at all the offers rejected by Republicans, it comes as no surprise that the super committee will not reach a deal. By rejecting any mix of spending cuts and tax increases, Republicans ensured that there would be no agreement a deficit reduction package.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Latest From Occupy Wall Street

Just days after the brutal raid on the Occupy movement's home base in Liberty Plaza, a huge day of action is planned to take the movement to another level.

Photo Credit: Sarah Jaffe
..New York's 99 percent aren't letting a massive middle-of-the-night police raid get them down.
November 17, the two-month anniversary of the Liberty Plaza occupation in Manhattan's financial district, has been the center of plans for massive actions for weeks now, and the crackdown by billionaire mayor Michael Bloomberg's forces early Tuesday morning has only given new determination to the organizers and activists.
“Everyone as of last night was totally exhausted and drained,” Olivia Leirer of New York Communities for Change told me, “But ready to put their energy into the 17th and to make sure the energy on the 17th is not about the police crackdown, but about the message of the movement.”
That message will be heard across New York's five boroughs, from morning til evening, on Thursday. “Storytelling and getting people's voices heard is the major theme that's running throughout everything that's happening tomorrow. There will be plenty of opportunities from sunup to sundown for people to come and tell their stories,” Leirer said.
According to the website (which is not run by the Liberty Plaza occupiers but an affinity group), starting at 7:00 AM, protesters will gather in Liberty Plaza and gather to “exchange stories rather than stocks.” Details are few, but rumors are flying that some dramatic unauthorized street theater is planned.
Students from universities across the city plan to walk out of class on Thursday as well. All week, students have held events as part of a coordinated Week of Action, including a lecture by acclaimed author and activist Arundhati Roy in Washington Square Park, a rally at Columbia Law School in support of locked-out Sotheby's art handlers, teach-ins, and much more.
“The real threat to health, safety, and democracy in our communities dwells in the boardrooms of Wall Street firms and universities that are destroying our economy, dismantling our education, and corrupting our political system - not among non-violent demonstrators spending cold nights in tents in Liberty Square,” said Aaron Winslow, a student at Columbia University, in a statement.
The student strike, like all of the November 17 actions, was planned ahead of time in solidarity with the activists in Liberty Plaza, but will no doubt now have new meaning for those involved. Walkouts will be occurring all day on different campuses, but, according to organizer Zoltán Glück, will converge on Union Square at 3 PM and then will march down to Foley Square to meet the rest of the protesters.
“The novelty of this,” Glück told me, “is the new level of coordination and collective action and solidarity between all the schools. There's always been organizing on different campuses, but now they're working together. Occupy Wall Street has provided the form and the forum for a dialogue to be opened up. This is building, and at this moment when it feels like we've lost a lot of territory.”
Around the city, meanwhile, subway stops will see action as well, as 16 central subway hubs will see activists telling their stories, handing out flyers, and bringing the message of the Occupy Wall Street movement to the outer boroughs, to people who don't normally come across the protest in Liberty Plaza. According to the site, these actions will begin at 3 PM.
The centerpiece of the day will be a massive, permitted rally at Foley Square, the site of October 5th's big union solidarity march and of a temporary meeting ground early Tuesday morning as protesters thrown out of Liberty Plaza searched for someplace to regroup.
“It's not going to be a traditional rally or march at all, it's going to be creative and exciting, we're really thrilled about the energy that's been put into it,” Leirer told me.
She said that rather than a rally where speakers address a crowd of listeners, instead there will be soapboxes set up throughout the space, for everyone in the 99% to come and speak their piece, tell their story to the crowd. “It's the physical embodiment of the 'We are the 99%' concept,” she said.
Finally, at the end of the day, the website declares that there will be a march to the bridges. Though it doesn't specify which bridge, the site does say:
“Let's make it as musical a march as possible - bring your songs, your voice, your spirit! Our "Musical" on the bridge will culminate in a festival of light as we mark the two-month anniversary of the #occupy movement, and our commitment to shining light into our broken economic and political system.”
Leirer pointed out that the day was planned well in advance of Bloomberg's raid on the park, and that hopefully the day will remind everyone what the real message of the movement is. She doesn't think the crackdown will stop the movement—just the opposite.
“I think that the Occupy movement is so much bigger than the park, and what's happened across the country and the solidarity that we've seen from groups like ours, labor unions, we've seen this new invigoration to the work that we've been doing forever.”
Sarah Jaffe is an associate editor at AlterNet, a rabblerouser and frequent Twitterer. You can follow her at @seasonothebitch.

Saturday, November 12, 2011


I have nothing to add to this from Edge of Sports.  It is from yesterday and refers to the night before.

Penn State and Berkeley: A Tale of Two Protests

Last night, two proud universities saw student demonstrations that spiraled into violence. On the campus of Penn State University in State College Pennsylvania, several hundred students rioted in anger after the firing of legendary 84-year-old head football coach Joe Paterno. At the University of California at Berkeley, 1,000 students, part of the Occupy USA movement, attempted to maintain their protest encampment in the face of police orders to clear them out.
At Penn State, students overturned a media truck, hit an ESPN reporter in the head with a rock and made every effort at arson, attempting to set aflame the very heart of their campus. They raised their fists in defense of a man fired for allegedly covering up the actions of a revered assistant who doubled as a serial child rapist. The almost entirely male student mob was given the space by police to seethe and destroy without restraint.
At Berkeley, the police had a much different response. Defenseless students were struck repeatedly with batons, as efforts were made to disperse their occupation by Sproul Hall, the site of the famed Mario Savio–led free speech battles of the 1960s.
Two coasts and two riots: a frat riot and a cop riot. Each riot, an indelible mark of shame on their respective institutions.
The difference is that at Berkeley, the Occupiers—a diverse assemblage of students, linking arms—pushed back and displayed true courage in the face of state violence. They would not be moved. These students are a credit to their school and represent the absolute best of a young generation who are refusing to accept the world as it is.
At Penn State, we saw the worst of this generation: the flotsam and the fools; the dregs and the Droogs; young men of entitlement who rage for the machine.
No matter how many police officers raised their sticks, the students of Berkeley stood their ground, empowered by a deeper set of commitments to economic and social justice.
No matter how many children come forward to testify how Joe Paterno’s dear friend Jerry Sandusky brutally sodomized them on their very campus, the students at Penn State stood their ground. They stood committed to a man whose statue adorns their campus, whose salary exceeds $1.5 million and whose name for years was whispered to them like he was a benevolent Russian czar and they were the burgeoning Black Hundreds.
Theirs was a tragic statement that proud Penn State has become little more than a company town that’s been in the lucrative business of nursing Joe Paterno’s legend for far too long.
I spoke this morning to a student who was at Sproul Hall and another resident who was a bystander at State College. The word that peppered both of their accounts was “fear:” fear that those with the space and means to be violent—the police at Berkeley and the rioters at Penn State—would take it to, as Anne, a Berkeley student said to me, “a frightening point of no return.”
I would argue that this “point of no return” has now actually been reached, spurred by Wednesday night’s study in contrasts.
November 9 was a generational wake-up call to every student on every campus in this country. Which side are you on? Do you defend the ugliest manifestations of unchecked power or do you fight for a better world with an altogether different set of values? Do you stand with the Thugs of Penn State or do you stand with Occupiers of Berkeley? It’s fear vs. hope, and the stakes are a hell of a lot higher than a BCS bowl.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Is Cain Able?

Herman Cain campaign manager Mark Block was not telling the truth when he claimed on Fox News that one of the women accusing Cain of sexual harassment is the mother of a reporter at the news outlet that broke the story, the Cain campaign acknowledged Wednesday. 

After noting Tuesday night that "Karen Kraushaar had come out as one of the women" who accused Cain, Block told Sean Hannity that "we've come to find out that her son works at Politico," the news site that first broke the harassment allegations.

Asked by Hannity if Block had "confirmed that," Block (pictured at left) responded, "we confirmed that he does indeed work at Politico, and that's his mother, yes." 

Block's comment was inaccurate on multiple levels. First off, the reporter to whom he was referring, Josh Kraushaar, is a former Politico reporter; he has worked at National Journal since 2010. Second - and most importantly - he isn't Karen Kraushaar's son. And third, Block doesn't appear to have tried very hard to verify his claim despite his statement that he had "confirmed" it.

On the National Journal website, Josh Kraushaar wrote Wednesday that he had responded to multiple inquiries Tuesday explaining that he is not related to Karen Kraushaar, and also put the information out in a Tweet. No one from the Cain campaign, he said, contacted him before Block went on the air. 

"Despite that, Block proceeded to go on Sean Hannity's Fox News show to proclaim that I was Karen Kraushaar's son and to suggest I was one of the people who leaked the story," wrote Josh Kraushaar.

Earlier today, the Cain campaign came clean, saying in an email to a number of media outlets that "Based upon information available at the time of Mr. Block's Tuesday night interview on Fox News, the campaign was led to believe that Mr. Josh Kraushaar, currently with the National Journal and a former employee of Politico, was the son of Karen Kraushaar. Mr. Josh Kraushaar is in fact, not related to Ms. Karen Kraushaar."

According to a Tweet from National Journal Communications Director Taylor West, Fox told National Journal that it plans to correct Block's claim on the air Wednesday evening.

Block, who seen last month smoking in a Cain web ad that went viral, claimed last week that Rick Perry's campaign had leaked the story to Politico - before subsequently walking that claim back.

Block is also at the center of questions as to whether a corporation he co-founded called Prosperity USA illegally paid expenses for Cain's presidential campaign in its early going.

Influential conservative blogger Ed Morrissey of Hot Air wrote Wednesday morning that Block needs to step down.

"If he's not gone by tomorrow, no one will take this campaign seriously again -- nor should they," wrote Morrissey .

This story first appeared on CBSNEWS.COM

Monday, November 7, 2011

Jackson Doctor Conrad Murray Guilty of Manslaughter

At 2:15 pm MDT Dr. Murray was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in the death of Pop singer Michael Jackson.

This was a good verdict, based on the evidence.
Although the Doctor will probably not serve any time in prison,
he will lose his license.

Life will become progressively more difficult for Conrad Murray who apparently has fathered several children with different mothers.

He will soon learn that the most difficult legal situation to be in in America is to owe child support.

He may serve significant time for failure to pay, the courts have no sympathy for a man's inability to pay child support.

There was screaming outside of the courtroom in celebration of the verdict.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Twinkle, Twinkle, Killer Cain

I was wrong.
I thought Cain would be finished when people learned the guy was a serial harasser.
He has raised over a million dollars since the story broke.
Polls show that 70 percent of Republicans feel that even if the stories are true, it would not affect his campaign.

Mitt Romney said, “The people need a president who is faithful and moral. I was at a lady Gaga concert recently, she found out I was there, waltzed over and pranced around me for a minute or two.
I didn’t even look up her meat dress,”
A few moments later he said, "Well, I looked up her meat dress, but I didn't enjoy it."

Gingrich pointed out that he had never been convicted of sexual harassment, he said he thought the charges were very serious, much more serious than his own serial adultery.

Michele Bachmann announced, “My husband is one hundred and ten percent male, even though most people assume he’s gay. He’s man enough for me.”

Rick Santorum smiled sadly, “What can I say? I am being beaten in every poll by a black guy who can’t keep it in his pants, a pot smoker, a nut who is married to a fag, a cult member and a retard from Texas.”

Perry, in his typically down home way said, “He’s black. What do you expect? Put them around a bunch of sex starved white housewives, they cain’t control their selves. If Obamer warn’t half white
he’d be doin’ the same thing.”

Reporters tried to get Cain to comment on the charges, “Nein, nein, nein,” Was his response.

Heroic Woman Punches, Kicks Man Who Groped Her on the Subway

Heroic Woman Punches, Kicks Man Who Groped Her on the Subway

A 22-year-old college student who was groped on a subway platform recently decided not to take the fondling sitting down. So instead she kicked, punched, and screamed at her assaulter -- and took pictures of him, to boot.
Shyane DeJesus told the Post that a man grabbed her on the 6 train platform of New York's Union Square station. He “grabbed my right shoulder and pushed my head down and lifted my skirt up and groped me,” she said.
“He went on the train and sat down as if nothing happened. I was hysterical. I yelled that he just groped me. I literally started punching him in the head,” she said.
No one came to her aid.
DeJesus got in a few more knocks on her attacker, and, as the train pulled in to the next station, took her phone out of her bag.
“I held the door and positioned the phone in his face. I was shaking, I’m surprised I got it,” she said.
“He smirked when I looked at him. He never said a word, not a word. All I got was that smirk.”
DeJesus then got off the train and ran to her job, where she called police.

Dershowitz Defends Israeli Prisoner Exchange

Dershowitz Defends Israeli Prisoner Exchange
Published: Friday, October 28, 2011

Harvard Law School Professor Alan M. Dershowitz defended on Thursday Israel’s decision to secure the return of captured soldier Gilad Shalit in exchange for the release of around 1,000 Palestinian prisoners as part and parcel of Israeli democracy, something that he said Western observers do not take sufficient care to understand.
Dershowitz made the remarks at a talk alongside Rabbi Jonathan H. Sacks, the chief religious leader of British Jews, and said that Israel’s decision to agree to a swap represents a vital democracy insofar as the movement to secure Shalit’s freedom was a popular one that was led by his family and carried out in the court of public opinion.
“No matter what we may think in the halls of academia ... ultimately, the decision has to be made by Israelis,” Dershowitz said.
Many observers have criticized Israel’s choice to release a large number of prisoners in exchange for Shalit’s return, a decision that many say will lead to further kidnappings of Israeli soldiers to be used as bargaining chips. Dershowitz pushed back against American criticism of Israeli policy by saying that American critics of Israel do not adequately take into consideration Israel’s status as a democracy, which he said entitles it to a greater degree of independence than some of its critics grant.
In the wake of the exchange, Dershowitz and Sacks both said it was important for Israel to retain its Jewish identity even in the hailstorm of conflict, adding that the long-standing tension between Israelis and Palestinians should, in principle, be able to lead to a sense of understanding between the two peoples.
“If there is anyone on earth who should be able to understand Jewish struggles, it’s Palestinians,” Sacks said. “And if there is anyone on earth who should be able to understand Palestinian struggles, it’s Jews.”
Dershowitz said that while the conflict is headed in the wrong direction politically, it is moving in the right direction intellectually.
“It can’t be based on ‘it’s our home’ or ‘it’s your home,’” Dershowitz said. “It’s the home of both people and both people have to live in peace with each other.”
Both Sacks and Dershowitz, two highly vocal advocates for a Jewish state, recognized the difficulty of the conflict. For all their expertise on the matter, neither Sacks nor Dershowitz had a clear view of whether the effort to achieve peace is progressing in the right direction.
Both men said that there was an inevitability to the tie between the Jewish people’s history and today’s Israel. Because Jews are unique in their perpetual homelessness, Israel remains a product of Jews’ history of trauma and expulsion, Sacks said.
“Jews discovered that there was not one inch on the face of the planet that they could call home,” Sacks said.
“It’s hard to see how, in a world in which there are 56 Islamic states and at least 82 Christian states, there isn’t room for one Jewish state,” Sacks added. “Whatever criterion you use, Jews have a right to this very small space.”

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

God Said to Abraham "Kill Me A Son"

I think I can state with some certainty that my friends on the right are thrilled with the prospect of Herman Cain’s denouement.
Last night the lovely, but possibly insane Ann Coulter said, “Our blacks are better than their blacks.”
Democrat party spokesmen announced, “We don’t own any blacks. Ann Coulter is speaking for the Republicans.”

The women that Cain allegedly harassed  (three at latest count)are asking to be relieved from the confidentiality clause, so they can counter Cain’s claims that the charges were false.
At any rate, after Cain’s early denials, “I know nothing about these allegations,”
Then “I remember there were allegations, but I know nothing about the particulars”
Then later “I don’t know if there was a settlement” then “There was a settlement, but it was called an agreement, that’s different.”
And so on, ad nauseam, it appears that his campaign is effectively over, although he is still raking in the gifts, which is probably the reason for his campaign to begin with.

For Democrats this is not good news, we like blacks, we liked Cain, he was entertaining, and he would have been easy to beat.

For Republicans, who probably put out the story in the first place, this is wonderful.
Republicans don’t care for blacks or other minorities, and the thought of having a black President NO MATTER WHO WON, kept neocons up at night, drenched with cold sweat.

Now the race is Romney’s to lose.
Can he do it?

a thousand people turned out for high holiday services organized for the Occupy Wall Street protesters.

The “few Jew-baiters,” wrote Michelle Goldberg, “are marginal, particularly compared to the large numbers of Jewish activists taking part.” She wrote that ECI’s accusation was “dishonest and deceptive.” It’s worse: If it weren’t such a serious subject — Marc Tracy calls the accusation “highly irresponsible” — labeling the whole movement as “anti-Semitic” would be laughable. Dan Sieradski of Occupy Judaism, which is seeking to rally Jewish supporters to the 99 Percent movement, dismissed the “couple of jerks and idiots” and noted that a thousand people turned out for high holiday services organized for the Occupy Wall Street protesters.

By Ali Gharib on Oct 19, 2011 at 9:00 am

Protester with 'hashtag' symbol
The attack unleashed mostly by the neoconservative right on the 99 Percent Movement for alleged pervasive anti-Semitism reached absurd new heights over the weekend and early this week. An ad launched last week by the Bill Kristol-led Emergency Committee for Israel (ECI) — whose hedge fund bankroller happens to really hate financial regulation reform— made the rounds of the mainstream media, getting picked up by Politico‘s Ben Smith and the Washington Post‘s neoconservative blogger Jennifer Rubin.
The ad, which was largely ripped off from a pseudonymous Israeli neocon blog (whose author proclaims to be a “friend” of ECI’s executive-director-in-title-only Noah Pollak), portrayed anti-Semitic sentiments in videos of two people — one of them an admitted petty thief and apparent camera-hungry provocateur — and a photograph of a sign-holder. And other websites posted a woman expressing anti-Semitic sentiments on a Reason video apparently at L.A.’s protest. That’s four people out of hundreds of thousands worldwide that have participated in 99 Percent protests. The “few Jew-baiters,” wrote Michelle Goldberg, “are marginal, particularly compared to the large numbers of Jewish activists taking part.” She wrote that ECI’s accusation was “dishonest and deceptive.” It’s worse: If it weren’t such a serious subject — Marc Tracy calls the accusation “highly irresponsible” — labeling the whole movement as “anti-Semitic” would be laughable. Dan Sieradski of Occupy Judaism, which is seeking to rally Jewish supporters to the 99 Percent movement, dismissed the “couple of jerks and idiots” and noted that a thousand people turned out for high holiday services organized for the Occupy Wall Street protesters.
Despite the seriousness of the charge — and the consequences of deploying it frivolously — it’s difficult not to snicker at the continuing far-right attacks on the 99 Percent Movement as anti-Semitic. Commentary launched a factually-challenged attack on New York’s Occupy Wall Street protest movement. And Andrew Breitbart’s Big Government site said that staunch Israel supporter Rep. Steve israel (D-NY) supported an “anti-Israel/anti-Semitic” cause.
But the most ridiculous attack, by far, came from the far-right Pajamas Media website. A writer going by the name “Zombie” — whose put up some of the most raucously funny attacks on the 99 Percent Movement (“Commies and Kooks,” etc.) — had a doozy of a post on Monday.
Organizers at Denver’s 99 Percent Movement rally had taped a hashtag symbol — the pound signwhich is now used in Twitter to tag a word — on their shirts. The mark was supposed to make the organizers easy to identify in a crowd, but Zombie saw a much more nefarious force at play: National Socialism!
"Zombie" wrote:
Don’t these people see an echo of the swastika in their new power symbol? Don’t they realize that the early Nazi Party was (among other things, obviously) also overtly anti-capitalist?… Don’t they know that the early Nazis tried to garner sympathy with street rallies and marches?
When informed in the comment section of the post that the symbol was merely a Twitter symbol — and not a “bizarre neo-swastika” — Zombie continued to insist the 99 Movement has Nazi tendencies:
As a commenter notes, the symbol may have derived originally from the Twitter “hashtag,” but that in no way diminishes its creepiness. It may “just” be a rotated hashtag, but that doesn’t lessen its significance as a power symbol.The swastika, after all, was “just” a Buddhist good luck marking before the Nazis adopted it and started using it to indicate something else.
Jeffrey Goldberg, the mainstream media’s self-appointed final arbiter of who is and isn’t a Nazi and what is and isn’t anti-Semitic, has proclaimed that “Occupy Wall Street Is not anti-Semitic.” The mainstream media should take heed of his judgment and let the meme die, leaving it to the far-right symbologists and conspiracy theorists.


·                   99 Percent Movement
·                   Nazis
·                   Noah Pollak
·                   Politico
·                   The Washington Post

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Stick a Fork In the GOP, They're Done

Today on a panel of talking heads, including the Ron Reagan that thinking people like (his son), the pundits could not guess why the Republicans have such a weak field.
It’s actually fairly simple.
The Republicans have no workable solutions for the problems our country is having.
Their entire platform is; more tax breaks for the rich, cuts in social programs for the poor and working people, and outlawing birth control.

Here is their problem; 70 percent of Americans support tax increases for the rich, not reductions.
People don’t want Social Security or Medicare gutted, and most Americans support birth control.

So, when Perry is not appearing to be insane, and Cain isn’t lying for 12 straight hours, all they have left is a platform that no one but the few scattered tea baggers support.

Who will inherit the GOP mantle after Bachmann’s and Perry’s and Cain’s fall?

You got it,  "the luckiest Mother**cker in the GOP, Mitt Romney."