Friday Open Thread

7 Aug 2009

Good Morning.

TGIF, and spend some of it at JJP.

Drop those links. Engage in debate. Give us trivia and gossip too.

And always, have a peaceful day.

I just caught the piece from Steele over at CNN.com.

I’m keeping this short and sweet so our readers have some informational nuggets as Republicans attempt to bury the public with explosive words.

His first complaint – The Stimulus Failed

In total, more than 2.6 million jobs have been lost since Obama took office. But what has the president’s stimulus bill brought us, if not the jobs he promised?

Fact: Only 10% of the stimulus has been spent. The economic situation (during Bush) was way worse than what was measured. I’m guessing President 43 didn’t keep his papers in order, so, we’ll just have to be patient. In fact, there are many hurdles projects need to clear to meet certain guidelines to make sure the money is spent wisely.

His second complaint – Cap and Trade Sux

This bill is nothing more than a national energy tax, plain and simple. Its sole purpose is to increase the cost of energy so that Americans might use less.

Fact: A cap and trade system model is in existence and has proven to reduce long-term environment al cost. The Acid Rain Program from the Clean Air Act was proven to have reduced the levels of acid rain between 1980 and 2007 by 80%. What’s more, the system is meant to model an exchange of these credits on the free and open market, a concept the Republicans are always defending. Which is it?

His third complaint – Health Care Reform is Mad Scary

The president claims that more government involvement in health care will promote competition. However, creating such a government-run entity would result in a massive government health care monopoly.

Fact: The group he cites (the Lewin Group) as an opponent to Obama’s plan actually wrote in conjunction with another group to support a national health exchange, EXACTLY like what Obama is proposing. Ignoring the fact that the government protects us WELL through the FDIC, our military, our food and drug, our automobile safety, and our elder’s retirement, the proposed plan clarifies:

  1. Establish a national insurance exchange that offers a choice of private plans and a new public plan
  2. Require everyone to have coverage, with income-related premiums to make coverage affordable
  3. Institute insurance market reforms that focus competition on outcomes and value

The results of doing this are:

  1. Extend affordable coverage to all
  2. Improve population health
  3. Reduce the growth in national health spending by a cumulative $3 trillion by 2020

How?

Just the numbers (from the same report):

Mr. Steele. Just the facts please. None of that nonsense.

Evening Open Thread

6 Aug 2009

Good Evening.

Drop those links. Engage in debate. Give us trivia and gossip too.

And continue to have a peaceful day.

Cross-posted at Firedoglake, Huffington Post, and DailyKos.

Last week, after Glenn Beck called President Obama a “racist” who has a “deep-seated hatred for white people,” we asked ColorOfChange members to call on Beck’s advertisers to pull their funding from his show. More than 50,000 people have already joined the call, and today we have great news to report — advertisers are starting to listen:

Three companies who run ads during Glenn Beck — NexisLexis-owned Lawyers.com, Procter & Gamble and Progressive Insurance — today distanced themselves from Beck. LexisNexis has pulled its advertising from Beck and says it has no plans to advertise on the program in the future. Both Procter & Gamble and Progressive Insurance called the Beck advertising placements an error that they would correct.

Since we released our statement announcing the news this morning, another company, S.C. Johnson (Pledge, Ziplock, Off!) told us that it was a mistake for their ads to be running on Beck’s show, and that they’d make sure it wouldn’t happen again in the future. (UPDATE: Our contact at S.C. Johnson wanted us to clarify that they have had no knowledge of their ad running on the Glenn Beck show (they wanted to verify this for themselves), and if it did happen, it was not something they requested.)

This is great progress, and it shows how effective it can be when thousands of people tell advertisers not to support this kind of hateful rhetoric. Now we need to step up the pressure on Beck’s other advertisers. While Lawyers.com, Procter & Gamble and Progressive Insurance were quick to respond, many others have avoided answering us, or refused to budge. We’re currently in conversations with advertisers, and the more people they see joining this campaign, the more reason they’ll have to listen.

If you haven’t done so already, please sign our petition to Beck’s advertisers, and ask your friends and family to do the same. Moving forward, we’ll keep you informed about effective ways you can pressure the advertisers to withdraw their support from Beck’s show.

If you can stomach it, here’s a half hour video of sickening race-baiting from Glenn Beck, put together by Media Matters:

Read the rest of this entry »

I’m all for constituents getting into the grills of their respective Congress Critters if they believe their best interests are not being looked after on Capitol Hill.  That’s why the Critters have their local “Town Hall” meetings – so they can meet with their constituents and let them know what’s going on in DC and what they’re doing.  After all, your taxes pays them an average $165,000 a year to basically work a three day work week.

But when you resort to literally trying to put a foot in your Congress Critter’s ass, as many Republicans (aka ReTHUGS) are allegedly doing, you have not only jumped the shark, but your ass may catch a case.

Check this out (H/T John Amato, Crooks and Liars)

As lobbyist-run groups encourage conservative activists to “rattle” members of Congress at local town hall events, Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA), the president of the freshman Democratic class has revealed that “at least one freshman Democrat” has already been “physically assaulted at a local event.” Connolly warned that conservative groups had taken things to a “dangerous level“:

And Ms. Nancy (aka House Speaker Nancy Pelosi) is supposed to be targeted as well.   Then, if by chance, someone actually remembers THE LAW and tries to enforce it by bringing either felony assault charges, attempted manslaughter or attempted MURDER charges, these bastards are going to be hollering about their 1st Amendment rights to Freedom of Speech; their 2nd Amendment rights to bear arms and all the equal protection under the law clauses they fight so damned hard to eviscerate when POCs and women defend them.

Every POS anchor that has played a part in ratching up this shyt needs to have FCC licenses yanked, and someone needs to GO TO JAIL for inciting SEDITIOUS ACTS against its OWN GOVERNMENT.

Glenn Beck’s ass is at the top of this list, followed by Loudmouth Lou Dobbs, Sean Klannity and let’s not forget Bill “I’m a Sexual Harrassing a-hole with a Falafel” O’ Reilly.  When they are allowed to get on the airwave and agitate for the murder of abortion doctors; call the President of the United States a RACIST (and you KNOW your ass would have seen jail for even whispering “Bush” and “Bigot” in the same sentence for the last eight years), and advocate for violence in order to intimidate and subjugate those who would not be silent on issues that matter – your behavior is no better than the average thug in Southeast DC, and I’ve probably insulted DC thugs by comparing them to these POS at this point.

Only these thugs wear thousand-dollar suits and call themselves REPUBLICANS.  And their history of skull thuggery goes back to 2000 when they hijacked the Presidential election and bumrushed the election offices, starting fights with those who protested their votes didn’t get counted, or employing tactics that effectively suppressed the rights to votes, and taking this country back 40 years when the Klan didn’t want Black people exercising their rights to vote.

Those of  us in Progressiveville coined the phrase “ReThug” because the Republicans were ACTING LIKE THUGS.

There is more honor among theives as opposed to this bunch.  And Republicans who are moderate, thoughtful, intelligent – God, it must REALLY SUCK to be in the GOP right now, because you’re drowned out by these thugs and are forced to defend their asses when things blow up.

I want MC Steele-Moe Bling to once again, try and convince me why the hell I should want to consider the Republican Party when its party members are more likely to put a cap in my ass as opposed to allowing me to engage in discussion, disagreement and dissent.  They whine about the Constitution while they use it as toilet paper.

They holler about how “Patriotic” they are with those silly ass “teabagging” parties and are anything BUT PATRIOTIC.

Now, they have a group that believes they’re annointed by God and the rules don’t apply to their asses, while providing solace to the likes of perverts, and adulterous elected officials like Senator Ensign and South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford.

I know the GOP is in major meltdown right now, but I’m most concerned about how many casualties will be incurred before the Government puts their asses on LOCKDOWN.

When you act like a THUG, I’ll call you a THUG.  And if you’re in the Republican Party and carrying out this shyt in their name, I don’t call you a RETHUG for NOTHING.

CNN is refusing to air this ad going after the health insurance industry to stop their attacks on healthcare reform. It’s ludicrous: CNN won’t air the ad because “it unnecessarily singles out an individual company and person.” Um, they’re not saying that anything in the ad is false or libelous. Just that it somehow makes someone at CNN uncomfortable for some reason. Wow — the forces are lining up to make sure we stay broke and unhealthy. Please help us fight back and tell CNN to air this ad!

The healthcare insurance lobby will stop at nothing to stop Obama and stop change. They’ve given Sen. Max Baucus almost twice as much money in donations to make him their boot-lickin’ lackey and in Nebraska, there’s a fake progressive blogger named Kyle Michaelis, whose sole role in life is to try and provide cover for Sen. Ben Nelson of NE to stall healthcare reform. Here’s the tv ad and campaign that Progressive Change Campaign Committee and Democracy for America launched on Sun at HealthCareCantWait.com and check out how Michaelis and Nelson tried to wiggle out from under the heat.

As Kombiz Lavasny says over at DailyKos:

It’s hard to have a conversation about health insurance reform when you can’t talk about the health insurers who are made the health insurance mess in the first place and are profiting while 14,000 Americans lose their health insurance daily. They have always had the power to stop disqualifying people with pre-existing conditions, “rescinding” policies when policy holders get seriously ill, and raising premiums based on past medical history. But they haven’t done any of those things because it would hurt their bottom line.

Please take a second to sign this petition demanding that CNN air the ad. Healthcare reform isn’t going to happen without a fight. Do it for the person you know in your life who’s gotten screwed by health insurance or doesn’t have it at all.

hat tip —spirit55 and muzikal

Good Afternoon.

Drop those links. Engage in debate. Give us trivia and gossip too.

And continue too have a peaceful day.

US-POLITICS-JUSTICE-OBAMA-COURT
— STACEY ILYSE/AFP/Getty Images

YEAHS 68
NAYS 31

The first Hispanic and only the 3rd woman on the Supreme Court.


Congratulations, Justice Sotomayor

Leave to fawning Crew of 42 to defend now-former Rep. William “Dollar Bill” Jefferson like he’s some kinda victim of The Man. This guy has done next to nothing for his beleaguered constituents in New Orleans post-Katrina. He’s not a leader and never was. Just a two-bit greasy crook who got caught with $90K hidden in foil-wrapped  frozen pie crust boxes in his freezer. A federal jury convicted him yesterday on 11 of 16 counts, including bribery, racketeering and money laundering, as deserved. Yet he’s still receiving special treatment, it seems.

Thuglife, anyone? Maybe now the CBC will finally kick this guy to the curb. NOLA needs real advocacy on the Hill now as much as ever. I hope this clears a path. Here’s the deets:

Former Rep. William Jefferson, a Democrat who had represented parts of New Orleans, was accused of accepting more than $400,000 in bribes and seeking millions more in exchange for brokering business deals in Africa. A federal jury convicted him on 11 of 16 counts, including bribery, racketeering and money laundering.

[...]

Jefferson was acquitted of counts that included obstruction of justice and violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. He was the first official to be charged with violating that act, which makes it illegal to bribe foreign government officials.

The defense argued that Jefferson was acting as a private business consultant in brokering the deals and that his actions did not constitute bribery under federal law.

It took jurors five days to reach a decision after an eight-week trial that was mostly government testimony. The defense wrapped up its case in a matter of hours.

Prosecutor Mark Lytle said Jefferson could face more than 20 years in prison under federal sentencing guidelines. He wanted the 62-year-old former congressman detained immediately after the verdict, saying his ties to Africa made him a risk to flee what could amount to a life prison sentence. [...]

However, Judge T.S. Ellis III allowed Jefferson to remain free on bond because of his local ties.

U.S. Attorney Dana Boente said after the verdict that “no person, not even a congressman, is above the law. Ninety thousand dollars in a freezer is not a gray area. It’s a violation.”

Dolla dolla bill, y’all.


So now that we’re in the new era of Black Power, I guess that means we’re going to see more of this kind of embarrassing behavior of black people fightin’ amongst themselves over money. Black billionaire Cathy Hughes has been pummeling Rep. John Conyers & members of the CBC to continue reaping profits at the expense of recording artists. It’s easy to look at Jay-Z and Beyonce and say, oh they don’t need no mo. But the fact is that there are hundreds and thousands of other artists who aren’t Roc-A-Fella, if you know what I mean. We’ve all heard the classic stories of artists getting ripped off for their music. Basically whenever you buy a CD or download a song (that you paid for, ahem), the artist gets a cut but NOT when a song is played on the radio. Conyers’ legislation is intended to close this loophole.

Whassup? Here’s TheHill.com’s take:

A battle over music royalties has pitted members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) against the owners of black radio stations, sparking a rare public fight between African-American powerbrokers that could work against lawmakers used to easy reelection.
[...]
Leading the charge against the lawmakers is Cathy Hughes, the founder and chairwoman of Radio One, the nation’s largest black-owned broadcast company.

She has aired a series of radio ads targeting black lawmakers, with the most recent round questioning the ethical integrity of House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.), the chief sponsor of the legislation calling for radio stations to pay royalties to musical performers, and seeking to connect him to federal bribery-related charges to which his wife recently pleaded guilty.

The fight has divided the liberal civil rights community, with the NAACP and the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) supporting Conyers while black leaders such as the Rev. Al Sharpton and the Rev. Jesse Jackson line up with Hughes, Radio One and other black-owned stations.

Radio One’s ads have also criticized Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) and three other members of the CBC: Reps. Mel Watt (D-N.C.), Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) and Robert “Bobby” Scott (D-Va.).

Diva Dionne Warwick, who like other artists supporting Conyers’ MusicFIRST bill, is under attack by Hughes and Radio One put it best in HuffPo:

You can begin to understand Ms. Hughes’ willingness to rip off black artists when you take a look at who she attacks and the kind of company she keeps. During the last presidential campaign she repeatedly attacked Barack Obama, calling him “a dazzling deception” and implied that we supported him because black people are easily fooled. She has even supported the current chairman of the Republican Party, Michael Steele, who said he would attract more African Americans to his party by offering “fried chicken and potato salad.” This is hardly a woman who is looking out for what’s best for the African American community.

The struggling musicians who need the Civil Rights for Musicians Act don’t want a handout from Cathy Hughes or Clear Channel or the National Association of Broadcasters, which is the mouthpiece of big — largely white — corporate radio. They just want to be paid for their work. This legislation would make sure that these artists are directly compensated, not the recording executives who may have stolen from them much as Ms. Hughes and Radio One steals from them now.

Hughes needs to jump back because a) the attacks are unfair, b) artists deserve to be paid for their work and c) the world is changing and black radio needs to keep up. I admire Hughes for her biz-savvy, but let’s not forget — a bizzatch is only bout the benjamins and is looking out for #1. IMO…Hughes needs to check herself and step back, before she burns more bridges in the black community.

And as for Jesse and Al? Isn’t it always funny how they both tend to end up on the side of big money, honey?

Afternoon Open Thread

6 Aug 2009

hat tip djchefron

And this very astute comment from morphus:
Unfortunately, 44 years later, voting rights are still being
challenged, diluted, and blocked.

Good Afternoon.

Drop those links. Engage in debate. Give us trivia and gossip too.

And continue to have a peaceful day.

Miranda asks…

Are any members of the CBC holding townhalls on healthcare reform?

GREAT QUESTION, MIRANDA

I’ve been wondering that myself.

From DailyKos

We knew, and we are watching. Sadly.
by Deoliver47
Wed Aug 05, 2009 at 06:58:48 AM PDT

When I sat “we” I am referring to black people in America collectively. Oh, I know it is presumptuous of me to “speak” for all black Americans, and granted there will be those who don’t agree. But I’d like you to remember, think back to the early days of the primary, and the numerous polls and interviews with AA’s who were fearful of voting for Barack Obama because they thought if he was selected he would become a target for the simmering boiling racism that is not far below the surface, ever, for us, right here in our home.

I stress “our home” since African-Americans are as much a part of the foundation stones and building blocks of the US as any group, and actually more so than many who arrived in later waves.

We have been watching for generations. Like Ralph Ellison’s “Invisible Man” we are ofttimes like anthropologists; participating and observing at the same time. Always wary. Sleep with one eye open. Prayers waft upwards in the hope that there is somebody up there listening from black churches cross America. “Please keep that young man safe” “God, protect him”. Can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard this repeated. Sadly, we know that God don’t seem to protect those we cherish, or put into leadership. Can’t tell you how many shrines I’ve seen in black homes. MLK, JFK and Bobby…Malcolm and others…we know, and feel powerless. The very powerlessness of black folks for centuries has increased our “faith” in the Almighty, since having faith in our fellow humans to behave humanely towards us has shown little reward. Ever think about why black folks are religious? It is a religiosity born of pain, and fear, and resignation. Yes, and “hope”. Hope that somehow, someday…we shall Overcome.

My grandmother cleaned floors and cared for the children of white folks. They talked in front of her as if she was invisible. Then she became a cook. Listened to their conversations at table. My great aunt was also a domestic. Then she was promoted by the white folks kids she raised, and allowed to cut their hair as the first black female barber in a segregated Department store in Washington DC owned by those children she raised. They talked while she snipped, as if she was invisible. My great grandmother a midwife – ushering black and white babies into this world and privy to conversations ofttimes unguarded. My grandfather a chauffeur, in cap and uniform, ferrying white folks hither and yon. Silent, respectful, but not deaf. My other grandfather a Pullman Car porter, shining shoes, making up beds, waiting table in the dining car. Called “George” though his name was Dennis. He could hear. He watched, only stepping forward when fingers were snapped and a tip tossed his way.

My white grandmother, also a domestic, and later employed by the Singer Sewing machine company was our “mole”. Never acknowledging she was married to a black man (she would have lost her job) she spent much of her life in a rage, listening to white people talk about “niggers”. Ironic that she was the most virulently “anti-white” person in my family. She knew.

This reflection this morning is in response to the diary on the rec list about the threats to the life of President Obama and the increasingly overwhelmed Secret Service. Some comments to the diary have poo-pooed racism. “Oh it’s not cause he’s black…it’s cause he’s a Democrat. Or..Hillary would have gotten just as many…or “remember how they hated Bill”.

No. Sorry. Wrong. He’s black. The primary source of “birther” rage, and teabagger ire, and wingnuttery, and “go out and get guns and ammo” is being spurred by something we have known all along. Any black man elected to the highest office in this land would unleash a flood, would take the lid off the kettle, and show the rest of you (though many are still in denial) just what we have known for generations.

Rest of this powerful diary at the link above.

Thursday Open Thread

6 Aug 2009

Good Morning.

As you go through your day, don’t forget JJP.

Drop those links. Engage in debate. Give us trivia and gossip too.

And always, have a peaceful day.

I am NOT Afraid

5 Aug 2009

From DailyKos

I am NOT Afraid.
by Muzikal203
Wed Aug 05, 2009 at 09:33:53 AM PDT
Cross-posted @ Muzikal Thoughts

I know lots of you disagree with me, but I am not afraid for President Obama’s life. I have never been afraid for his life. Yes, I realize there are crazy people out there and there are “more” threats against Obama’s life than any other recent President. The only thing that surprised me when I heard that was that it’s only 30 a day. But still I’m not afraid.

Yes, I’m Black, but I never even entertained the thought of not supporting Obama because I was afraid someone would kill him.

Yes, I know he had to get Secret Service protection earlier in the campaign than anyone else who didn’t already have it.

I know these things. I know racism is still alive and well. But I am not afraid.

Muzikal203′s diary :: ::
Perhaps it’s because I’m part of that younger generation who has largely gotten this far in life without being subjected to outright racism. We came about when the racists were the minority, not the majority. Racism wasn’t the law of the land when we were born. Perhaps it’s because I never thought my own life was in danger because I’m Black.

I agree that racism is alive and thriving in some areas of this country and among some racial groups, but that group is largely becoming even more of a minority than it was before. Most of the country watching what’s going on are appalled, they aren’t cheering these wackos on. Those racists who are so proud to be racist are the MINORITY. Obama’s election did not create any racists who weren’t already that way. Maybe before his election those people were doing a better job of “hiding” their racism, but they were still racists. There are some people out there who just hate Obama regardless of his skin color, just like there were people out there who hated every president. That’s just life.

I trust the Secret Service to keep him safe.

Racism is a real problem in America, mostly because no one seems to want to deal with it. People complain about it constantly, but don’t really want to do anything to remedy it because it may not be politically expedient.

Rest of it at link above.


Who We Are

Cheryl Contee aka "Jill Tubman", Baratunde Thurston aka "Jack Turner", rikyrah, Leutisha Stills aka "The Christian Progressive Liberal", B-Serious, Casey Gane-McCalla, Jonathan Pitts-Wiley aka "Marcus Toussaint," Fredric Mitchell

Special Contributors: James Rucker, Rinku Sen, Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins, Adam Luna, Kamala Harris

Technical Contributor: Brandon Sheats




Sponsors

Advertise here!

Obamacare – Get Some


Archives

Peep ‘Em

I Am A Community Organizer (300x243)

Community Activity



Black Behind Coverage/Disclaimer

This is a personal weblog which does not represent the views of the authors' employers, clients nor vendors.

Ain’t Like All The Rest

Jack and Jill Politics is not affiliated with Jack and Jill of America, Jack and Jill Magazine, "Jack and Jill Went Up the Hill to Fetch a Pail of Water" nor any of the other Jack and Jills out there on the Google. Just so's you know.
Bitnami