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Fresh food for thought served up any ol’ time by whim of Prairie Sunshine...do bookmark us and visit often. And share with your friends. And thanks for stopping by.

"The price of freedom is eternal vigilance."

...............................................................Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Thank you, Keith Olbermann

As a "child" of an 85-year-old in the hospital this week, bearing witness to families around us in the ICU unit who are dealing with the trauma of trying to figure out arrangements for their loved ones and what will be allowed by insurance and what won't as they cope with the challenges of medical conditions....

As one who saw too much of the trauma of families dealing with the harshness of the healthcare coverage system amid their traumas of medical circumstance and care during the long years of my husband's illnesses which finally claimed him last July, I have just two words for Keith Olbermann's special comment:

Thank you.

It can't be easy for Mr. Olbermann to talk so publicly about his father's situation. And I thank him for his courage. It can't be easy to advocate so rawly for the reform the American healthcare system so desperately needs. So I thank him for his fortitude. It can't be easy to contain the full extent of the passion he brings to the table. So I thank him for expressing via his microphone what so many of us know and care about and do whatever we can, too, to advocate for.

We may not win this battle—the lobbyists and entrenched interests and too many gutless, selfish politicians and fools weigh against us.

But the cause is just, the need is real, and the people we love deserve no less than our full effort.

So thank you, Keith Olbermann. You honor your father.
And for one day, this day, my heart is a bit lighter because we've stepped back from the brink, Mom's out of ICU and into a regular room. Go, Mom!
crossposted at firedoglake's Seminal

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Foxy Saudi News

We've long known Fox News and its glory guy Roger Ailes have been anti-Obama. Heck, he boasts about it.

And there's a case to be made that such rooting by the likes of Beck, Hannity, O'Reilly, Hume, the Doucybag, gabby Gretchen, newbie Sarah for Obama's failure would lead to America's failure.

But could it be they're directly anti-America as well? Working through their news coverage to advance the agenda of their Saudi owner? Controlling and manipulating their commentary to destroy the case for green jobs and American jobs in order to keep filling the coffers of the Saudi oil sheiks?

And since when should we trust temporary American Rupert's agenda either?

Maybe they all rationalize that they're supporting America's oil industry...or maybe they're just too busy counting their coins.... Judas Fox? Inquiring minds are asking.

It's Out There, Cokie.
crossposted at firedoglake's Seminal

Recommended: The M Word

Will Bunch on the murderer Stack.

And then there's the sorry state of too many in the political class, who are more interested in scoring political points than acknowledging the obvious.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

punked...and pimped

What digby said ... about what Eric Boehlert [Media Matters] said ... about the phonying up of the O'Keefe assault on ACORN. And what it says about where we're at....

'spose ol' Howie Kurtz will give this one a big play next Sunday under the category of yet another thing the media let the Republicans get away with? Or will he still be slavering over the media sex scandal industry coverage of the Tigerpenis?
crossposted at firedoglake's Seminal

Friday, February 19, 2010

Pandering Pawlenty

Minnesota Governor and I-wanna-be-Prez Tim Pawlenty advocating violence and gawdifying at the CPAC Conference.

On the Day of the Tiger, L'il Timmy obviously felt he needed to get in a golf reference (God, guns, gays and golf—gee, there's a novel idea), so he recommends taking a nine iron to smash a window out of big government

Because he's Republican enough, he's hypocritical enough, and doggone it, he wants those conservatives to like him.

And by golly, he's out to show Michele Bachmann's not the only rightwing crazy panderbear in Minnesota....

I prefer Lily
crossposted at firedoglake's Seminal

With Headlines like These....

Anthem Blue Cross raises rates 39%. Medicare Advantage rates going up 14%.... Can we please RECONCILE NOW...WITH THE PUBLIC OPTION???????

Sorry for the shouting.

But for all the wasted time of the past year trying to get votes out of the Republican side of the aisle when they made clear from the get-go that they would obstruct and delay and obstruct and delay right into the 2010 elections, you'd think the Democrats in Congress would at long last stop with the foot-dragging hand-wringing and let reality return.

Maybe they need to be force-fed an endless loop of that scene from Gladiator when Russell Crowe convinces the other men in the ring they must stick together to survive and they must fight back. But that would take "men"...and "leadership"...and I digress....

As NorthDecoder reminds us today in yet another local example, Republicans will not cooperate, will not admit success of the stimulus, will do their darnedest to deny their states got any stimulus funds, just those ginormous photo-op checks in their staged media events [see any recent episode of Rachel Maddow's stim-pocrisy watch]. We can only succeed if we toot our own horn...

And pass legislation worth tooting about.

Reconciliation. We've missed the early part, so let's go for often. Reconcile on health care reform. Reconcile on financial reform. Reconcile on energy. Reconcile on...

Reconcile on delivering what Americans have been voting for. It's past due.

Then shout it from the mountaintops.
crossposted at firedoglake's Seminal

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Franni Franken Fights Bach(mann)

When Michele Bachmann started spewing her usual venom about Social Security being a fraud, Franni Franken had enough.

You see, Franni knows firsthand what Social Security can mean to American families.

Thing is, Michele, Franni's not the only one who has had enough.

So just keep on talking, alienate the demographic most likely to be listening to your idiocies on Fox. And know that even weekend Minnesotans are gearing up to assure you're serving your last term in Congress.

And maybe it's time you be called to account on those federal farm subsidies your family has no problem sucking up. Hypocrisy Hall of Shame? Michele's the prima dona.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Quote of the Day: David Dayen

In a blogpost about Evan Bayh's retirement decision and pontifications on the dysfunction that is Washington rule-by-filibuster, David Dayen distills perfectly:

the public, who selects its representatives, has a right to see its will expressed after it delivers a mandate.


Monday, February 15, 2010

Monday Morning Blogtree: the ultimate death panel

Spreading important blog-conversation this morning about the power of constituents. We can vote, we can be vigilant. We can influence the people who represent us.

If we choose to do so.

Or we can be part of the ultimate death panel — the death of democracy.

We can't count on the media to do it. Or the Beltway self-interest circles. Or some other guy....

So how about it? Will you choose to help democracy live? Or turn a blind eye, a deaf ear? We have free speech—for now—how will we, how will you, choose to use it?
crossposted at firedoglake's Seminal

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Bookmarked: GPS

Week in, week out, the most intelligent hour of Sunday morning news analysis comes from CNN's Fareed Zakaria.

Take today, for example (with no slight to Joe Biden's forceful appearance today on Meet The Press, which was must-see viewing).

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

But back to Fareed. If you're not a regular GPS viewer, you need to be. Just for moments like this:

Fareed Zakaria comments on Peterson and Greenspan from last week’s MTP, gutless cowards with nothing to lose pander on the Bush tax cuts expiring. Bush tax cuts the big black hole of the deficit. If they don’t have the courage of their convictions [they have convictions? /s] then how can anyone expect the politicians to have any….

For shame, says Fareed.


Fareed Zakaria, guest MTP panelist Rachel Maddow, forceful Joe Biden — what Sunday morning could be, ought to be.
crossposted at firedoglake's Seminal

Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Press Played Dumb....

Four words succinctly indict the media hypocrisy covering left and right as latest shown in tea party coverage.
John Amato at Crooks & Liars sums up the situation of media hypocrisy in covering the tea party convention perfectly:

He cites Eric Boehlert at Media Matters for the deconstruction that distills to:

The press played dumb

It's how they roll.... all of 'em.

Expect more of same when fearmonger in chief "Dick" Chee-knee has his newest closeup moment on This Week Sunday morning.
crossposted at firedoglake's Seminal

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Colbert Schools Palin...and Rumblerush

Well we really don't have to add anything more than—ta, da— Stephen Colbert.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Hope-y, Change-y. Nope-y.

While the silla one from Wasilla struts her crib notes and canned memes, the real war is building between the Big Rs...and I don't mean Rahm....

The silla from Wasilla gets a reality check from Daily News columnist Mike Lupica. And even a mocking today from Scarborough on Morning Joe. Out Fey-ing Tina? Sounds like a challenge for an SNL reprise to me.

This Monday diss after her yoga-esque contortions, as Lupica calls 'em, to say no, Rush really isn't crossing the line in using the R word, along with the intelligence-dimming inquality of her Saturday night TeaBagger speech.

Hope-y, change-y, Sarah? Really? When you play toady to Rush's bully? Pocketing the pricey coin as you gull the rubes back into the Gooper base fold?

So why are the supposed intelligent political reporting class--Andrea, Savannah, Chuck Todd...say it ain't so, Schuster--treating this woman seriously? Where is their reality check? Media acting like credulous reporters making Murrow, Cronkite, Jennings proud?

Nope. Dope-y.

In the battle of the right wing heavyweights, Sarah's caught in the middle between Limbaugh and Ailes. Used to be I thought Roger and Rush were a tagteam, but of late I'm thinking self-interest prevails. While Roger's fillin' Sarah's coffers and grooming her as his pet propaganda pusher, Rush is makin' sure his own pockets stay overflowing.

So far, the king of feminazi racist healthist insult has not met his match.
Crossposted at firedoglake's Seminal

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Shhhhhhhhhhhhh -- Yay, Saints.....

well, this is Vikings territory. Does take a hardy soul to cheer on the Saints hereabouts.

But what's not to love about this win....

Saturday, February 6, 2010

A Timely Reminder to Snowpocalyptans

If you're in the snow zone this weekend somewhere in America, just remember... what comes down will rise up in the spring.

There's a 30-day waiting period for flood insurance to go into force.

Never too early to prepare....
Yes, the late, great Mr. Sunshine did sell insurance, how'd you guess? Yes, I do have replacement cost coverage...

You should, too.
crossposted at firedoglake's Seminal

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Dicks Are Rs

Once again a Republican Dick justifies his name.

Question "R" Rush

Is Rush Limbaugh deliberately taunting Sarah Palin? Daring her to call him out as she did Rahm Emanuel for his intemperate F***R****?

Is the battle of the rightwing grifter heavyweights building up steam?

Or is Sarah about to take her lipstick and retreat, licked, back to Wasilla?
crossposted at firedoglake's The Seminal

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Prairie's Reading: Fake Sincerity

North Dakota's in inevitability mode...or so the Hoeven Senate campaign wants everyone to believe. Today they're announcing the support of 30 of the state's mayors, including the mayors of Fargo and West Fargo. The appearance of nonpartisanship belies those mayors' Republican ties, but inevitability marches on...and it's not even March yet.

So the article Why do people vote against their own interests? from BBC News caught my interest. [h/t commenter nomolos in attaturk's thread at fdl]

Two key takeaways from fellow frustrated Democrats cited in the article:

Republicans have mastered the art of appealing to emotions and persuading people to vote in ways that make their own situation worse.

And, if you can fake sincerity, you've got it made.

Do I expect the voters to read and learn from this article, or Thomas Frank's What's the Matter with Kansas? No.

But it would sure be nice if Democratic candidates and consultants would.
crossposted at firedoglake's The Seminal

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Shorter John McCain

And let's be candid, John McCain couldn't get much shorter than he has gotten lately.

On Don't Ask, Don't Tell, here's the shorter, true take:

What do you mean I'm not president?

That pretty much sums up everything about John McCain...sore loser.


crossposted at firedoglake's The Seminal

Monday, February 1, 2010

Monday Morning Food for Thought

I'm having a wee bit of trouble taking seriously the bleatings of the corpulent king of greed and gluttony this morning as the videoclips of Roger Ailes on This Week make the rounds of the blogosphere and 24/7 cable. Maybe it was his slippery conflating of an obscure commenter's comparing him to FBI dame Jay Edgar Hoover at Huffington Post with the endless drumbeat of anti-Obama, anti-Democratic ranting by Ailes' own army of circus elephants named Beck and Hannity and O'Reilly.

Yeah, I know, they're all intimate friends with Barbara and maybe they've even been invited to salons at the Queen of Tarts' place a time or two.

But while these well stuffed, well botoxed elites blather on about what basically amounts to schoolyard bullying and fingerpointing, I'm thinking about real schoolyards these days.

The president is proposing significant changes to No Child Left Behind, and I'm betting it won't take long for the Faux News crowd to jump on this and sweep up attacks on teachers' unions as part of the enemies lists on which they thrive.

(Apparently thriving is going very well for Fox these days. $20something millions for Roger, Al Hunt practically drools, as though those dollars somehow signify something of importance other than Roger's ability to further stuff his face and build the gated fences higher and surround himself with more and more security....

(Ever wonder where those big audiences they boast come from? Take a look next time you visit grandma at the nursing home—you do visit grandma, don't you?—take a look at what cable channels are pumped in for her viewing. Betcha it'll be a whole lotta Fox and not a sign of msnbc. So much for liberal media.

(And then there are the apologists like the woman from USA Today whose name I mercifully missed. The print version of Fox person grudgingly acknowledges, well, yes, Fox prime time is conservative...blithely ignoring how Fox prime time memes weave through 24/7 programming.)

But back to food for thought of a more substantive nature. Those teachers that Fox loves to attack? Well, they're on the front lines day to day for more than just teaching. Any given Monday morning, for example, they can spot the signs of kids who are starving, malnourished, so hungry their bellies are growling, their heads are dizzy.

And the teachers, who already have dipped into their own wallets for school supplies, these days are on the front lines of seeing to it kids have food in their backpacks to take home for the weekends. And they're working now on ideas on how to keep kids fed during summer vacations.

Malnourishment just might be another good reason to extend the school year through the summer.

Is our kids learning? Not if the dumbing-down and impoverishment and destruction of the middle class lifestyle we used to take for granted keeps on going...

And this isn't happening in some far off third world country seen only in quick videoclips. No. This is pervasive hunger right in the middle of the heartland, where agriculture is big business and Senators and Congressmen on both sides of the aisle are all too quick to earmark more of those farm subsidies, like the ones Michelle Bachmann's family farm rakes in.

President Obama has taken on a daunting challenge to change the status quo, whether healthcare, the economy or education or.... But the Forces of No will be doing everything in their power to bring things back round to the good ol' days of the 2000s. Because that all worked out so well for the middle class and America's children.
crossposted at firedoglake's The Seminal