08/26/2012 archive

Rant of the Week: Bill Maher

New Rules Real Time With Bill Maher 24 August 2012

Here’s the only thing you need to know about Todd Akin and human anatomy, he’s an asshole.

It’s not a coincidence that the party of fundamentalism is also the party of fanatasy

The symbol for their party shouldn’t be an elephant, it should be a unicorn..

My New Rule for Todd Akin and the Republican Party

by Bill Maher

New Rule: If your entire party tries to get rid of you, and you stay in, you can’t talk about how easy it is for a woman to push a stupid prick out of her body.

I don’t want to waste another second thinking about Todd Akin, and his theory that you can’t get pregnant unless your eggs are asking for it. Here’s the only thing you need to know about Todd Akin and human anatomy: he’s an asshole. What I want to talk about is how it’s not a coincidence that the party of fundamentalism is also the party of fantasy. When I say religion is a mental illness, this is what I mean: it corrodes your mental faculties to the point where you can believe in tiny ninja warriors who hide in vaginas and lie in wait for bad people’s sperm.

Evangelicals might like to pretend that the magical thinking that they indulge in at home doesn’t affect what they do at the office, but it absolutely does. The brain that believes in angels and miracles and Jesus riding a dinosaur is trained to see the world not as it is, but as you want it to be.

Republicans would like to pretend like Congressman Akin’s substitution of superstition for science is a lone problem but it’s not: they’re all magical thinkers, on nearly every issue. They don’t get their answers on climate change from climatologists, they get them from the Book of Genesis. Hence Sharia Law in America is a dire threat, and global warming a hoax. [..]


Obama on Romney’s ‘extreme’ views

By BEN FELLER, Associated Press

20 hrs ago

Obama also offered a glimpse of how he would govern in a second term of divided government, insisting rosily that the forces of the election would help break Washington’s stalemate. He said he would be willing to make a range of compromises with Republicans, confident there are some who would rather make deals than remain part of “one of the least productive Congresses in American history.”

Obama expressed confidence that even voters whose lives have not improved during his term will stick with him as they assess the two candidates.

Obama’s view of a different second-term dynamic in Washington, even if both he and House Republicans retain power, seems a stretch given the stalemated politics of a divided government. He said two changes – the facts that “the American people will have voted,” and that Republicans will no longer need to be focused on beating him – could lead to better conditions for deal-making.

If Republicans are willing, Obama said, “I’m prepared to make a whole range of compromises” that could even rankle his own party. But he did not get specific.

On This Day In History August 26

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

August 26 is the 238th day of the year (239th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 127 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1920, The 19th Amendment, guaranteeing women the right to vote, is formally adopted into the U.S. Constitution by proclamation of Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby. The amendment was the culmination of more than 70 years of struggle by woman suffragists. Its two sections read simply:

“The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex” and “Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.”

America’s woman suffrage movement was founded in the mid 19th century by women who had become politically active through their work in the abolitionist and temperance movements. In July 1848, 200 woman suffragists, organized by Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott, met in Seneca Falls, New York, to discuss women’s rights. After approving measures asserting the right of women to educational and employment opportunities, they passed a resolution that declared “it is the duty of the women of this country to secure to themselves their sacred right to the elective franchise.” For proclaiming a women’s right to vote, the Seneca Falls Convention was subjected to public ridicule, and some backers of women’s rights withdrew their support. However, the resolution marked the beginning of the woman suffrage movement in America.

n January 1918, the woman suffrage amendment passed the House of Representatives with the necessary two-thirds majority vote. In June 1919, it was approved by the Senate and sent to the states for ratification. Campaigns were waged by suffragists around the country to secure ratification, and on August 18, 1920, Tennessee became the 36th state to ratify the amendment, giving it the two-thirds majority of state ratification necessary to make it the law of the land.

The package containing the certified record of the action of the Tennessee legislature was sent by train to the nation’s capital, arriving in the early hours of August 26. At 8 a.m. that morning, Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby signed it without ceremony at his residence in Washington. None of the leaders of the woman suffrage movement were present when the proclamation was signed, and no photographers or film cameras recorded the event. That afternoon, Carrie Chapman Catt, head of the National American Suffrage Association, was received at the White House by President Woodrow Wilson and Edith Wilson, the first lady.

The 26th of August was proclaimed “Women’s Equality Day” in 1971 when a joint resolution, that was introduced by Rep. Bella Abzug, was passed. Each year the President issues a proclamation recognizing women’s equality.

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have been treated as second-class citizens and have not been entitled the full rights and privileges, public or private, legal or institutional, which are available to male citizens of the United States; and

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have united to assure that these rights and privileges are available to all citizens equally regardless of sex;

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have designated August 26th, the anniversary date of the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, as symbol of the continued fight for equal rights: and

WHEREAS, the women of United States are to be commended and supported in their organizations and activities,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, that August 26th of each year is designated as “Women’s Equality Day,” and the President is authorized and requested to issue a proclamation annually in commemoration of that day in 1920, on which the women of America were first given the right to vote, and that day in 1970, on which a nationwide demonstration for women’s rights took place.

Punting the Pundits: Sunday Preview Edition

Punting the Punditsis an Open Thread. It is a selection of editorials and opinions from around the news medium and the internet blogs. The intent is to provide a forum for your reactions and opinions, not just to the opinions presented, but to what ever you find important.

Thanks to ek hornbeck, click on the link and you can access all the past “Punting the Pundits”.

Follow us on Twitter @StarsHollowGzt

The Sunday Talking Heads:

Up with Chris Hayes: Joining Chris at the table are:

Wendell Cox, senior fellow at the Heartland Institute, consultant for the Department of Transportation, and former director of public policy at the American Legislative Council (ALEC);

Michael Bell, professor at Columbia University of Housing, visiting fellow at Harvard University, and an architect at Visible Weather. He also had an installation, which focused on a suburb of Tampa, FL, at the Museum of Modern Art;

Michael Steele, former RNC Chairman and MSNBC analyst;

Sophia Nelson, columnist for TheGrio.com, former GOP House Committee Counsel, and author of “Black Woman Redefined;”

Mayor Bob Buckhorn, Mayor of Tampa, FL. Also an Urban Land Institute fellow and travels around the country looking at how other cities develop;

Corey Robin, (@CoreyRobin) professor of political science at Brooklyn College and the CUNY Graduate Center and author of “The Reactionary Mind: Conservatism from Edmund Burke to Sarah Palin;”

Elise Jordan, (@Elise_Jordan) contributor with the National Review, Daily Best, Marie Claire, and Atlantic.com.  Former director for communications for the national security council and former speechwriter to Condoleeza Rice;

Avik Roy, (@aviksaroy) member of Mitt Romney’s health care policy advisory group and senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute. He also writes The Apothecary, a Forbes blog on health-care and entitlement reform;

Joan Walsh, (@JoanWalsh) MSNBC political analyst, Salon‘s editor at large and author of “What’s the Matter with White People: Why We Long for a Golden Age That Never Was.”

This Week with George Stephanopolis: Guests Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, chair of the Republican Platform Committee, and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, chair of the Democratic National Convention, face off on the 2012 presidential contest, Sunday on “This Week.”

The roundtable guests are  ABC News’ George Will; Rep. Donna Edwards, D-Md.; former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, host of Current TV’s “The War Room“; Republican strategist Mary Matalin; and FOX News anchor Greta Van Susteren.

Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer: Mr. Schiffer’s guests are Platform Committee co-chair Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., former Gov. Haley Barbour, R-Miss., and party chairman Reince Priebus.

At the roundtable are The Washington Post‘s Dan Balz, The Wall Street Journal‘s Peggy Noonan, TIME‘s Rich Lowry, CBS This Morning co-host Norah O’Donnell and CBS News Political Director John Dickerson.

The Chris Matthews Show: This week’s guests are Dan Rather, HDNet Global Correspondent; David Ignatius, The Washington Post Columnist;  Gloria Borger, CNN Senior Political Analyst; and Kathleen Parker, The Washington Post Columnist.

Meet the Press with David Gregory: MTP guests are former bovernor of Florida, Jeb Bush and Sen. John McCain (R-AZ).

The roundtable guests are DNC Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz; Governor Jan Brewer (R-AZ); Republican Strategist Mike Murphy and NBC News Political Director and Chief White House Correspondent, Chuck Todd.  

State of the Union with Candy Crowley: Ms. Crowley’s guests are RNC Chairman Reince Priebus;  Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker; Al Cardenas, Chairman of the American Conservative Union; Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX); Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley; CNN Senior Political Analyst Ron Brownstein and The Washington Post‘s Karen Tumulty.

Six In The Morning

On Sunday

Apple’s victory over Samsung could mean more lawsuits

 Some predict the ruling will force manufacturers back to the drawing board, as they seek to design smartphones and tablets that wouldn’t violate Apple’s patents.

By Dawn C. Chmielewski and Jessica Guynn, Los Angeles Times August 26, 2012

Steve Jobs didn’t live to see the outcome of the bruising war that pitted his iPhone and iPad against mobile devices that use Google’s Android software.

But he issued the call to arms.

“I am going to destroy Android, because it’s a stolen product. I’m willing to go to thermonuclear war on this,” Jobs told Walter Isaacson, author of a posthumously published biography of the Apple co-founder. “They are scared to death, because they know they are guilty.”

Sunday’s Headlines:

Lebanon fears a firestorm as old rifts that led to civil war open up again

Ghana’s witch camps: last refuge of the powerless and the persecuted

In Marlboro country, smoking ‘nurtures talent’

Cities turn to innovative ‘green infrastructure’

The return of the Indian Pale Ale

What We Now Know

Up with Chris host, Chris Hayes shares research showing how the median household income fell during the recession and how it continued to fall during the so-called recovery. His panel guests are Michelle Goldberg, senior contributing writer for Newsweek/Daily Beast and author of “The Means of Reproduction: Sex, Power and the Future of the World;” W. Kamau Bell, comedian and host of FX’s “Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell;” Ta-Nehisi Coates, senior editor at The Atlantic and author of “The Beautiful Struggle: A Father, Two Sons, and an Unlikely Road to Manhood;” and Jay Smooth, host of WBAI-FM’s “Underground Railroad.”

Big Income Losses for Those Near Retirement

by Catherine Rampell

Americans nearing retirement age have suffered disproportionately after the financial crisis: along with the declining value of their homes, which were intended to cushion their final years, their incomes have fallen sharply.

The typical household income for people age 55 to 64 years old is almost 10 percent less in today’s dollars than it was when the recovery officially began three years ago, according to a new report from Sentier Research, a data analysis company that specializes in demographic and income data.

Across the country, in almost every demographic, Americans earn less today than they did in June 2009, when the recovery technically started. As of June, the median household income for all Americans was $50,964, or 4.8 percent lower than its level three years earlier, when the inflation-adjusted median income was $53,508.

The decline looks even worse when comparing today’s incomes to those when the recession began in December 2007. Then, the median household income was $54,916, meaning that incomes have fallen 7.2 percent since the economy last peaked. [..]

The real median annual household income for blacks fell 11.1 percent from June 2009 to June 2012, landing at $32,498 from $36,567. That compares with 5.2 percent for whites, 3.6 percent for other race combinations (including Asians) and 4.1 percent for Hispanics – all of whom started with higher incomes than blacks.