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Week In The News: Obamacare, Jobs, Tobacco-Free Pharmacies, Sochi Olympics

Obamacare and jobs. CVS quits tobacco. Terror and toothpaste warnings for Sochi.  Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Russian President Vladimir Putin delivers his speech at the IOC President's Gala Dinner on the eve of the opening ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics, Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014, in Sochi, Russia. (AP)

Russian President Vladimir Putin delivers his speech at the IOC President’s Gala Dinner on the eve of the opening ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics, Thursday, Feb. 6, 2014, in Sochi, Russia. (AP)

No Chobani yogurt for U.S. athletes at the Sochi Winter Olympics this week, or ever, we’re now told.  And that’s just the beginning of the Sochi tales.  Stay tuned.  In Washington, it’s been a week of yes and no.  Yes to the big farm bill.  No, says John Boehner, to immigration reform this year.  New jobs numbers out – pretty mediocre.  Obamacare under fire on the jobs future front.  Philip Seymour Hoffman is dead with a needle in his arm.  Jay Leno signs off.  And a stolen Stradivarius is brought home in Milwaukee.  This hour On Point: Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Heidi Moore, U.S. finance and economics editor for The Guardian. (@moorehn)

Bob Cusack, managing editor of The Hill. (@BobCusack)

Jack Beatty, On Point news analyst.

From Tom’s Reading List

The Guardian: CVS doesn’t need tobacco for its revenues: it has Obamacare — “It turns out that the timing however, is perfect. CVS doesn’t need tobacco for its revenues because a bigger source of business is on the horizon: Obamacare. And Obamacare is invested in pressuring smokers to quit by forcing them to pay more for healthcare.”

The Wall Street Journal:On Eve of Winter Games, Worries About Sochi Mount –”Athletes and others arriving in Sochi encountered what appears to be a strong security presence. As of late Wednesday no incidents had occurred. But hanging over these Games is a threat from terrorists. On Wednesday it emerged that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has warned airlines sending flights to Russia to look out for explosives hidden inside toothpaste tubes.”

 Bloomberg: Twitter’s Loss Exceeds Estimates as User Growth Slows –”There were 241 million monthly active users in the fourth quarter, Twitter said in a statement today, up 30 percent from 185 million a year earlier and slower than 39 percent seen in the prior period. Usage also declined, with 148 billion views of Twitter timelines compared with 159 billion views in the third quarter. Net loss was $511.5 million compared with $8.7 million a year earlier, and was more than double analysts’ projections of $253.5 million.”

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  • 1Brett1

    Seeing the photo above of Putin, I thought this was the “Selling Testosterone” segment.

    (BTW, I hear hotel accommodations at the Sochi Olympics have been real old-school Soviet Union style, comrades!)

    • TFRX

      The Soviets invented the two-holer porcelain commode?

  • Unterthurn

    The lines at the Indian Cultural Centers or casinos are not for the museums nor dances, but for the cigarette drive throughs in the parking lots.
    Would think that cigarettes just aren’t a money maker for the drug stores.

    • John Cedar

      You are thinking correctly. The store press release said they are sacrificing 1.5 billion in sales and sacrficing hundreds of millions in profits. The state run media characterized that as “billions”. (apparently they round up). Most any other item they would make three times the margin on and have 10% in inventory cost.

  • longfeather

    Well, as to Putin and his ‘nakedness’, it is not an unusual thing for ‘working men’ to go bare chested. My favorite bare chested Ukranian, is Igor Rasteryaev, a poet and singer is at this link

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uy0LV0c055g&list=PL7EED0D68A5D104F6

  • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

    I can’t imagine that picture does anything good for the Olympic movement.

  • HonestDebate1

    “Opportunity created by affordable, quality health insurance allows families in America to make a decision about how they will work, or if they will work.” -President Obama

    Fundamentally transform America: check.
    This is awful.

    • TFRX

      Yep.

      Cos the last thing Americans need is the freedom to leave a crap job because they have preexisting conditions.

      Or maybe you just like Americans workers to be so tied down to work-based health care that they’re afraid to go, say, start their own business.

      I know that employers like laborers to be scared, desperate and clingy. And that’s good enough for you.

      Really, at least try a bit with your crap.

      • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

        Do you read what gets posted under your icon or does the party so totally control that account that there is no lie too fantastical for it not to be repeated?

        • Don_B1

          Your comment applies more to you and your own comments than it does to TFRX.

      • HonestDebate1

        The opportunity only becomes reality because someone else is footing the bill. Now we are telling Americans to expect it, they are entitled to other people’s money if they don’t feel like working, That’s not America.

        Beyond that, it’s just a stupid as hell talking point to counter the devastating CBO report. They don’t even believe it but their sheep swallow it whole.

    • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

      There are some people in D.C. that suffer from “job-lock” that I hope will make the brave decision to quite those jobs and seek other employment that will not put them in moral conflict.

  • Ray in VT

    I saw this BYU PSA talked about on @midnight on Comedy Central. It brightened my day.

    http://blog.sfgate.com/hottopics/2014/02/05/byu-psa-compares-porn-addiction-to-real-war/#20334101=0

  • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

    I wonder how some self described “liberals” can reconcile their belief in free speech while working so hard to silence Dana Loesch?

    FTA:

    By trying to intimidate ABC TV for “the crime” of allowing Dana to guest host “The View,” these left-wing organizations are trying to violate the spirit of both the First and Second Amendments of the United States Constitution.

    This example of left-wing extremism also exposes the sheer hypocrisy of the progressive movement. Conservatives get falsely accused of having a war on women but this example shows the real war on women is being waged by the left.

    http://deneenborelli.com/2014/02/left-mounts-war-dana-loesch/#M5wqY1EJG3vTu0gr.99

    • John Cedar

      Most left wing lunatics describe themselves as moderates.
      Hypocrisy is their middle name.

    • HonestDebate1

      They were successful getting rid of Elizabeth Hasselbeck. Mrs. Loesch is everything liberals hate. She’s Conservative, intelligent, beautiful, eloquent, sharp, happy and a great shot.

      I am also a big fan of Deneen Borelli who is hated even more.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        And Dana is a converted leftist. That must really gnaw at the liberals.

  • John Cedar

    our state run media is really blitzing this image advertising for CVS regarding cigarettes! Are all you librul dummies falling for it?

    Wegmans quit selling cigarettes years ago. Too much effort/exposure and not enough money in them, compared to the easy money they can make with the same shelf space.

    There is so much crazy money funneled to drug stores by Obamcare that it is not worth it for them to bend over to pick up dollars, when they can remain upright and pick up Benjamin$.

  • John Cedar

    On Sunday, Bill O’Reilly got his butt kicked while interviewing Obama and Billy doesn’t even know it. Obama used the same techniques that Ahmadinejad and Farrakhan use in public to marginalize their critics. “The sky is not blue Bill and the reason some folks think it is, is because of Fox news and guys like you keep telling them it is…but I like you anyway Bill. {touchy touchy smile grin}

    People that vote donkey will fall for that hook line and sinker.

    • J__o__h__n

      Manufactured quotes are not evidence. Fox News viewers are the ones who are uniformed as evidence by their belief that Iraq was behind 9/11.

      • HonestDebate1

        Are you saying Hussein didn’t orchestrate 9/11? But Shepherd Smith said they did, over and over. It was on Fox 24/7, it has to be true.

        • Ray in VT

          Who was it again that built the case that Iraq and Al Qaeda had operational ties up to and through the period of the 9/11 attacks, despite intelligence estimates that ran counter to that? Seems like when one tries to connect those dots repeatedly and publicly, then people might just get the wrong idea.

    • Ray in VT

      Running repeated stories that run counter to evidence that push partisan attack lines can certainly influence viewers, and Fox has certainly done this regarding Benghazi. People believe in some of the “controversies” because the media that they consume push it.

  • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

    So It has been reported that the NSA has given the DEA not only evidence but a system to make it look like the DEA discovered this on their own.

    FTA:
    After the Reuters report, C.J. Ciaramella used Muckrock to request all DEA training material and official policies concerning “parallel construction” and recently received nearly 300 pages of documents, much of it redacted, but still which reveals that this is common practice at the DEA and widely known. Much of it is in the form of PowerPoint presentations,…

    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20140203/11143926078/parallel-construction-revealed-how-dea-is-trained-to-launder-classified-surveillance-info.shtml

    So the DEA has spent a lot of effort figuring out how to lie to juries. Can we reasonably believe that this is the only example of misuse of NSA surveillance data? Does that make us any safer?

  • Ray in VT

    I thought that this was a cool news story when I saw it this morning:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/06/carbon-dated-camel-bones-bible_n_4737437.html

    We also had the science/creationism debate between Nye and Ham this week, which, I’m guessing, changed few, if any, minds.

    • Human2013

      I tan in the summer and get to be a beautiful golden brown like so many others. If this doesn’t convince others that “race” is a myth, I don’t know what can.

      • Ray in VT

        One does wonder why some might hold onto such notions.

  • HonestDebate1

    So there’s not a smidgeon of corruption?

    http://www.c-span.org/video/?c4483686

    • Ray in VT

      C’mon, all y’all people in the know “know” that this was all orchestrated by Obama as part of his revenge that you have told us that Valerie Jarrett said that they were going to exact.

    • Coastghost

      In some other year or decade, Obama’s taunt would be red meat for enterprising journalists: we’ll learn in coming weeks and months just how emaciated our press corps has grown since 2008.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        journalists or useful idiots? We live in surreal times, and I fear for where we are headed. Because of all the corruption and its consequences of recent decades, Americans are no longer able to ignore the deeper, root causes of things.

        As they explore, they are re-united with, or for the first time explore, political philosophies. Not the On Point comment board of dedicated amateur pundits, but larger numbers of Americans.

        I fear that it will all be too much too fast, and the collective head is going to explode, as the cognitive dissonance of people realizing the party that from afar looked like the prince in shining armor (R or D, you choose), turns out to just be an arm of the same elite who rig the world for their own financial gain or academic experimentation.

        Coming back to our founding principles would be a safe haven, but as they have been so effectively demonized and cynically linked with bigoted concepts, that is unlikely to escape the political-philosophical confusion either.

        So, with no moorings, and just pure disillusionment and growing rage, we are in for some terrible times, with all the chaos of course being expected, and channeled, to further solidify the power elite and cement the losses of classically liberal society.

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          On the other hand, I could be selling the majority of Americans short, and this is all old hat…. But either way, what is the outlet to entrenched State Capitalist power?

          Progressives see the unfair capital effects, libertarians see the centralized power effects and future danger.

          Both are valid concerns about an unhealthy Constitutional Rule of Law Democratic Republic, and both aspects need to be rectified for us to find some level of peace and the ability to move on.

          But there is no political outlet today.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      “weaponizing government”
      Using government power (OSHA, FBI, IRS,etc.) as a response to political speech should be chilling to everyone.

      This is far worse than the IRS targeting. Why is the media ignoring this huge story? If true, it is far worse than Nixon.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Has anyone heard from Ray Nagin? What’s he up to?

    #CorruptionTrial
    #MSMediaBlackout

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    You too can get a job at the CFTC if only you can answer yes to the following two questions:
    1. Has your bank manipulated energy markets under your watch, and
    2.Have you been found guilty of commodity price manipulation

    The Farce Is Complete: Blythe Masters Joining CFTC

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-02-06/farce-complete-blythe-masters-joining-cftc

    “We could ask what Elizabeth Warren would think about this hilarious rotating door out of the most punished for its legal transgressions bank – with about $25 billion in legal fees, expenses and settlement charges – the same Warren who earlier today was parading with pandering populism at the Senate hearing, as a result of which nothing would change…

    … but we won’t. Because as we noted: nothing will ever change. Actually correction – now it will be Blythe Masters on top of the one regulators that is supposed to enforce a fair, honest and efficient commodities market.”

    Yes…. keep voting for those mainstream Republicans and sweet-justice talking Democrats.

    Enjoy another hour of status quo apologia.

  • Ed75

    This week a U.N. committee issued a 16 page report criticizing the Vatican for establishing structures that allowed abuse of chiidren and not correcting the problem. They then got to the real meat of the matter: they wrote that the Vatican should change it’s teaching on homosexuality and abortion.

    Wow. Nerve. Well, it’s contradictory since the report condemns (rightly) child abuse, then advocates the worst form of child abuse, abortion. It breaks the U.N. rules in the treaties signed by the Vatican in joining the U.N. as an observer. It ignores the last ten years and all the programs the Church has implemented to the point that it’s a model for other organizations (which aren’t criticized at all but have this problem also).

    The archbishop at the U.N. gave an initial angry response, but there will be a formal response in a few days. The Vatican is the moral voice at the U.N., and the judge of the U.N., not the other way round.

    • J__o__h__n

      The Vatican and the Church are absolutely corrupt. The UN report is correct.

      • Ed75

        Is the Church corrupt? It’s tempting to call an institution corrupt, and sometimes it’s true. (Of course there are individuals who act badly.)
        The Catholic Church runs more hospitals and orphanages and hospices and shelters than any other institution in the world. (It’s funny – the media reported on people trying to get across the border from Mexico and the danger – and where did they find shelter, but in a shelter run by the Church.) And it runs more soup kitchens, AIDS hospices than any other organization, and that’s just an result of their first purpose, which is to serve and worship God.
        So, one knows a tree by it’s fruit, as Jesus said.
        In the Creed we say I believe in ‘One holy, catholic, and apostolic Church…’, which means the Church is holy and cannot be corrupt in the sense you mean. Of course there are individuals who behave badly, and it is constantly imperfect and trying to reform and grow holier and better.
        The UN has been around for 65 years, the Church for 2000, and it’s based on 2000 years of Judaism. I go with the Church’s teachings, not those of the UN. But I sympathise, our whole culture now thinks in line with the U.N.

    • ThirdWayForward

      The abuse problem would largely go away if the Church allowed priests to marry (women), as it did in the entire first millennium of its existence. Why not?

      This would do more than anything to humanize the institution.

      Perhaps in the future, women priests and same-sex marriages could also be seriously contemplated.

      • Ed75

        Well, there’s a lot to say about that. Studies show that child sexual abuse happens most often in the home, so celibacy is not necessarily the cause of asexual abuse.
        Celibacy isn’t inhuman since it’s not sinful: sexual immorality is inhuman since it’s sinful. Many people are celibate: sick people, people whose spouses are away, single people, etc.
        The Church did not require celibacy for the clergy until the 10th century, as a discipline and a witness, not because sex is bad but because it is a good, a sacrifice to give up, to be more loyal to God. But many (more than half) of priests chose to be single voluntarily anyway since they wanted to be wholly devoted to God.
        The discipline of celibacy only applies to the Roman Church, the Eastern Catholic Churches (there are 27 rites in the Cathoilc Church, the Roman is the dominant one) allow priests to marry, but their bishops are celibate.
        The change of the celibacy rule or discipline can happen and might happen under Pope Francis, but women priests and same sex marriage aren’t even possible theologically.
        The situation you describe has been followed by the Anglican church, and many have left them as a result.

  • Human2013

    There is such a disconnect with reality and job growth. The government asks employers to hire employees that they don’t need and the shareholders don’t want. The dichotomy of this economic system is that capitalism is not a social institution and we look to big business to saves us when their sole purpose is to return money to their investors. They will continue to find ways to do more with less as they always have. We need to turn our efforts to a new way of living — collective communities or something. There seems to be no vision or foresight into our new reality.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      “collective communities [...........] or something.”

      Human2013 in 2016!

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Communes are not illegal. Go for it. Many others have been there done that and didn’t find the promised land. Don’t take the rest of us down with you.

        • Human2013

          On what land? The land most of us can’t afford. Maybe we can live in the underground tunnels of Las Vegas like some have been forced to do!

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Work, save, buy land, dig, grow. Enjoy.

            The point is most of the pro-freebie folks, if plopped on a free piece of land with a bunch of tools and some seeds, wouldn’t make it.

            If they did, after all that hard work of making shelter and growing food and keeping varmints out etc etc, I would LOVE to see what they say when one of their old collectivist friends shows up and asks kindly for half of the fruits of his labor.

            There just is NO FREE LUNCH. Do you really think that Ben Bernanke/Janet Yellen are Santa Claus? They print $, politicians hand out (after Wall St gets its cut), and everything is honky dory?

            I am pro-community agriculture, voluntary, as a way of getting us closer to reality and away from the grasp of the vampire class.

          • Human2013

            The Vampire class? This country was built on free and reduced labor leaving millions behind. Stealing the heritage and culture of so many, so if these groups are now looking for a handout, it’s probably due. Let us NOT pretend that all people are created equal in this country. I’m positive I know your gender and color because only your kind spouts that ridiculous “boot straps” philosophy.

  • jefe68

    It’s First Friday February and the Right Wing Meme Bro Show is at it again. Brought to you by the misinformation influence peddlers, the Koch Brothers.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      You wish. Reality is much more disturbing than fiction.

      • jefe68

        You guys prove every week that the art of buffoonery is not dead.

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          Are those puppets singing the praises of Central Planning, Too Big to Fail, and Rule of Men not Law?

          • pete18

            Obviously they’re Obama fans, nervously laughing as they all look away from what’s happening right in front of them.

            Nothing to see here, just propaganda from those evil Koch brothers.

          • jefe68

            There not evil, just using their wealth to undermine our laws and electoral process.
            I’m beyond the point of thinking we still have a democracy, when it’s clear it’s really a plutocracy.

          • pete18

            So what are your feelings about George Soros?

          • jefe68

            Nope, just more of the right wing meme clown show.

          • StilllHere

            Obamapologists ready to swallow.

        • keltcrusader

          lol

    • pete18

      Why would we need to use the filter of the Koch brothers when we can just go directly to the source?

      Jay Carney’s reaction to the estimated loss predicted by the CBO of 2 million jobs due to Obama care:

      “At the beginning of this year, we noted that as part of this new day in health care, Americans would no longer be trapped in a job just to provide coverage for their families, and would have the opportunity to pursue their dreams.”

      http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2014/02/how-the-white-house-tried-to-spin-todays-cbo-report.php

      • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

        Mr. Carney is another person suffering from “job-lock”

        • pete18

          I’d like to suggest the route of “freedom” for both him and the President.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        We’ve delivered you from your jobs!

        This is insanity? That’s what I mean about peoples head are just going to explode soon…..

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    117K new jobs in January — horrible
    Don’t worry the December numbers revised UP — but only by 1K, far fewer than expected.

    How much mileage will Mark Zandi get out of blaming the polar vortex for lackluster job creation?

    #Obamacare

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Jobs?

      What are you talking about. Those shackles to the man? We should be celebrating our freedom from having to work.

      Jobs…. That’s so……… 1700′s!

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        From Braveheart:

        “FREEDOM”

    • StilllHere

      Fewer people need to work now that Obama will pay for their trip to the ER.

    • Human2013

      That’s #CapitalisminAction. It doesn’t appear to work that well as sooooo…. many predicted.

  • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

    Every time I read about what has been done by the IRS to Tea Party groups I keep remembering the court room scene from “Walking Tall” when Sheriff Buford Pusser rips off his shirt and shows the jury his scars, shouting “If you let them do this to me and get away with it, then you’re giving them the eternal right to do the same damn thing to any one of you!”

    FTA:

    The Treasury Department and Lerner started devising the new rules “off-plan,” meaning that their plans would not be published on the public schedule. They planned the new rules in 2012, while the IRS targeting of conservative groups was in full swing, and not after the scandal broke in order to clarify regulations as the administration has suggested.

    The rules place would place much more stringent controls on what would be considered political activity by the IRS, effectively limiting the standard practices of a wide array of non-profit groups.

    http://dailycaller.com/2014/02/05/email-irss-lerner-treasury-department-secretly-drafted-new-rules-to-restrict-nonprofits/#ixzz2se3N4S7U

    • OnPointComments

      Engelbrecht Manufacturing is in business for 20 years without being investigated or audited by a government agency. Catherine Engelbrect files for 501(c)(4) status for a conservative group and tea party group, and is subsequently investigated/audited, multiple times, by the IRS, ATF, OSHA, and FBI.

      “Shortly after filing IRS forms to establish 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) tax exempt organizations, an assortment of federal entities including law enforcement agencies and a Congressman from Maryland, Elijah Cummings came knocking at my door. In nearly two decades of running our small business, my husband and I never dealt with any government agency, outside of filing our annual tax returns. We had never been audited, we had never been investigated, but all that changed upon submitting applications for the non profit statuses of True the Vote and King Street Patriots. Since that filing in 2010, my private businesses, my nonprofit organizations, and family have been subjected to more than 15 instances of audit or inquiry by federal agencies.” –Catherine Engelbrecht

      And we’re supposed to believe that it’s all a coincidence.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Because of the appearance of weaponizing government power in response to political speech the regime needs to justify all 15 instances of audit or inquiry will full transparency of who ordered the audit.

        The Media needs to demand this daily until provided. We probably need an independent investigator with full subpena power.

  • Coastghost

    As of this Friday morning, 7 Feb 2014, I’ve heard not one breath all week long from any NPR outlet about this petty little display of candor on the part of US diplomat Victoria Nuland trash-talking the EU over its Ukraine stance.
    A minor diplomatic embarrassment, her frustration doubtless understandable: what else is the Obama Administration doing to enhance our diplomatic relations with the Europeans that the Snowden affair (yet another Obama responsibility) has not helped?

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Its a theme.

      “It’s almost as if they are explicitly telling the handful of people who still care about this entire charade a resounding “f… y..”.

      http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-02-06/farce-complete-blythe-masters-joining-cftc

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Since it was the Russians who tapped her phone and not the NSA it isn’t a story for NPR.

    • Charles

      http://www.npr.org/2014/02/06/272638061/leaked-ukraine-phone-call-puts-u-s-credibility-on-the-line.
      It was on ATC last night.

      Heaven forbid two adults use salty language in a conversation. Better get the impeachment papers ready…

      • Coastghost

        Impeachment at this point might be deemed an overreach.
        Still: a well-seasoned diplomat does not find herself compromised the way Nuland has permitted herself to be compromised (was she doing a mic check for the FSB?). This episode only displays a modest lack of professionalism in the US diplomatic corps, nothing to impeach anyone over, I’m sure. (What is her reporting relationship, though: she’s directly under Kerry at the State Dept. or is she directly under White House “supervision”?)

  • stephenreal

    Snowden’s disclosures about domestic spying strikes me as a ploy to hide the bulk removal of US military intelligence spirited away to Russia intel (if not to Russian cyber gangsters).

    • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

      Perhaps, but by lifting the rock and letting us see what was under it, we (the American public) have received some benefit.

      • stephenreal

        He revealed what was already known…if you read as much on this subject as i do.

        Der Speigel has a great reveal of the NSA tool kit on their web site.

        • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

          I will endeavor to catch up to you in that. But it was Snowden that brought this issue to the top of the “news”

          • stephenreal

            true. He sure did.

  • lobstahbisque

    The cat’s chorus is in full howl this morning. Keep in mind that these characters are Fox wanna ‘pundints’ [as John McCain hilariously calls them] who are DREARY. Just DREARY.

  • stephenreal

    It’s a good time to buy stocks fellas. if you are into that sort of thing.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Taper.

      • stephenreal

        I’m thinking Facebook, Verizon…that sort of thing.

  • stephenreal

    The Fed has to keep scaling back the bond buying as the economy is heating up. Although this is squeezing emerging markets.

  • stephenreal

    It’s been a tough year for massive data breaches (a la’ thank you Mr. Snowden).

    • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

      It’s been a good year for data breaches. If you didn’t know about it, you’d really be in trouble.

      • stephenreal

        tough year to have my data pants down around my ankles exposed to the world.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    When no one in America has a job and 100 jobs are “created” by the economy, you can effectively lower the “unemployment rate” to ZERO percent. Whooperdoo.

  • Jeff

    According to the household survey there were 638,000 jobs created…which is why the unemployment rate went down. How lazy are these “economists” and reporters to not investigate the BLS numbers on their own instead of taking other people’s word for it?

    • hennorama

      Jeff — another “uncurious media” comment about the labor market? You might want to be curious and educate yourself before posting on this topic again.

      (Hint: “the BLS numbers” use information from two different surveys, each of which has a different definition of who is considered to be “employed,” in order to estimate various elements of employment and unemployment.)

      • Jeff

        My numbers come from here:

        http://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/empsit.pdf

        Read the numbers…I based my numbers on the household survey (as I specified). Not sure what your issue is since I can back my numbers up with a direct source. The employment numbers generally used are the establishment data (from businesses reporting the info); I was pointing out how crazy it is that the media picks and chooses which numbers to report. I have yet to see the 638,000 jobs number in any news reporting.

        • hennorama

          Jeff – thank you for your response.

          Sorry that you are paying attention to such poor news sources. NPR and WBUR reported these numbers this morning, here:

          http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/02/07/272956312/nervousness-about-economy-ahead-of-todays-jobs-report
          http://www.wbur.org/npr/272956312/nervousness-about-economy-ahead-of-todays-jobs-report

          The reason much of the media uses the “headline” figures derived from the Current Employment Statistics (CES), AKA “the establishment payroll survey,” is that the CES uses a definition of employment that is much tighter, and far closer to what the general public understands. The CES figures are also far less subject to wide and wild swings when compared to the figures from the Current Population Survey (CPS), AKA “the household survey.”

          No single data point can describe the full range of circumstances that are present in the US economy, so the BLS uses both surveys in an effort to present a more complete representation of the economic impacts of various forms of human contributions of effort.

          Per the BLS website:

          “Why are there two monthly measures of employment?

          “The establishment survey [CES] and household survey [CPS] both produce sample-based estimates of employment and both have strengths and limitations. The establishment survey employment series has a smaller margin of error on the measurement of month-to-month change than the household survey because of its much larger sample size. An over-the-month employment change of about 100,000 is statistically significant in the establishment survey, while the threshold for a statistically significant change in the household survey is about 400,000. The establishment survey provides employment estimates for over 900 detailed industries, for the United States, each State, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and about 400 metropolitan areas. The household survey has a more expansive scope than the establishment survey, because it includes the self-employed, unpaid family workers, agricultural workers, and private household workers, who are excluded by the establishment survey. The household survey also provides estimates of employment for demographic groups.”

          See:
          http://www.bls.gov/ces/cesfaq.htm#scope1
          http://www.bls.gov/cps/faq.htm

  • Coastghost

    The job-killing (Un)Affordable Care Tax Act!
    Makes a compelling rationale for re-electing Democrats in the fall of 2014 . . . .

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Barack Obama. One Nobel Prize. One job to show for it. His.

  • stephenreal

    “Social media stocks are more overpriced than the internet shares were in year 2000,” says Faber.(CNBC)

    Besides Twitter’s staggering 24% drop on Thursday, Pandora was down 10% and LinkedIn took a 7% hit in afterhours trading before Friday morning’s opening bell.

  • OnPointComments

    White House press secretary Jay Carney: “Opportunity created by affordable, quality health insurance allows families in America to make a decision about how they will work, or if they will work.”

    Charles Krauthammer is right: the essence of liberalism is working people subsidizing people who choose not to work.

    • Raymond Firehock

      Requiring people to work is called slavery. Please address you comments to the children of the one percent now at Aspen or on Barbados.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Yeah but if you choose to not work don’t expect a government handout.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    I think the Dems have finally found their secret weapon.

    We saved you from your job!

    Now THAT’s change we can believe in!

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    17% of men aged 25-54 in the US are not employed.
    30% of women aged 25-54 are not employed.

    Is it healthy for society to have so few people working in their prime years?

    • hennorama

      WftC — please tell us what these numbers are telling you.

      Please also address the following facts:

      Since September 1954, the Labor Force Participation Rate (LFPR) for males in this age range has been declining.

      The LFPR for females in this age range has more than doubled since 1950.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        More Obamanomics.

        • hennorama

          WftC — thank you for yet another unresponsive response, with yet another undefined term.

          Well done.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            “undefined term”

            Oh my. Obamanomics — we are all living it.

  • ThirdWayForward

    You GUYS ARE COMPLETELY MANGLING THE OBAMACARE JOBS ISSUE.

    If 2.5 million people leave the workforce because they now have the choice to do so, THEN 2.5 MILLION JOB OPENINGS are created for those who want (or need) jobs.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      And when we fully implement e-verify and start prosecuting employers hiring illegal immigrants how many job openings will that create?

    • James

      Your still providing taxpayer incentive for people not to work. You want people to pay taxes, so that Obamacare will work (see the Supreme Court decision, it is a tax, otherwise it won’t exist today), so that certain people can leave the workforce, and the other people can be paid those salaries. The hell? Why don’t you just take those Obamacare dollars and grow your company and hire employees?

    • ThirdWayForward

      If 2 people go from full-time to half-time, then in order to maintain production, another worker needs to be hired for full-time. A business needs to make up the lost person-hours.

      I CANNOT BELIEVE HOW BADLY THIS ISSUE IS BEING HANDLED BY THE PANEL. IT’s really not up to their normal level of discourse.

      Have you guys all forgotten Economics 101?

  • BHA_in_Vermont

    The White House is right, the Republican’s who hate the ACA and look for anything to attack it are wrong.

    A great many people work for where they do SPECIFICALLY because it is the only way to get affordable health care. If we had national single payer health care, people would work at jobs they like rather than jobs that provide health insurance.

    • StilllHere

      Right, nobody works for the money because we’ve all saved up sufficiently for our daily needs and retirement!

    • hennorama

      BHA_in_Vermont — indeed. Part of the reason that Starbucks was able to grow so quickly is that they offered health insurance for part-time employees, enabling them to attract employees who otherwise wouldn’t have given the idea of slinging coffee a second thought.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Serfs of America liberated from their miserable working conditions. Didn’t I promise you “double plus” good things? Victory gins all ’round.
    –Barack H. Obama

  • ThirdWayForward

    THE GOAL IS FULL EMPLOYMENT FOR THOSE WHO WANT TO WORK.

    CHOICE IS GOOD.

    The Republicans are desperately trying to fit the Obamacare assessment into their unemployed-people-don’t-want-to-work meme. It’s PURE EVIL, and it’s really cynical.

    • James

      Choice without consequences negates the point of choice.

  • stephenreal

    Mitt Romney looks to be in a very strong position to take the White House now that Gov. Christie is one step away from indictment.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Headline: White House announces massive hiring ahead of 2014 elections.

    Jobs and jobs and jobs and jobs
    I just hired a bunch of knobs.
    –Barack H. Obama {Visionary for Modern Times}

  • creaker

    Odd they don’t balance those folks who would work less to retain insurance subsidies against all those in the medical field that will be working more as all these people use this insurance.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Yes, indeed.

    No master plan here.

    We would never vote for the reduced hours French work week, but our smarter, better elites can be sure we get it anyway!

    Our Big, Smart, Compassionate, Well-Meaning and of course Correct Government mandates, and market participants (unwittingly turned into Crony Capitalists) change behavior accordingly.

    Not that complicated.

  • Coastghost

    Victoria Nuland for her own Nobel Peace Prize? “for bringing candor to the treatment of testy international relations . . . .”

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    CVS should be free as a biz to sell what they want. We can shop where we want. Good for them. If I take up smoking I’ll go elsewhere.

    • ThirdWayForward

      They are free to sell or not sell addictive nicotine delivery systems, but we are also free to not patronize them if they do. Don’t you think it’s a bit incongruous that CVS will sell you cancer-causing cigarettes and also dispense meds to deal with the effects of cancer? it mixes up their image and confuses their brand.

      I was down on CVS for stigmatizing and penalizing overweight employees — this recent move by them improves my opinion of them, a little.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        They may or may not act incongruously. If it makes them go bankrupt, that would be bad. If the incongruity makes me have a bad vibe about them, I’ll go somewhere else.

        They can do what they want, just let me shop where I want.

      • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

        Last I heard, CVS allowed their individual pharmacists decide whether they would fill prescriptions for birth control. Definitely a mixed bag …

  • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

    Caller Jim is right – I have been “self-employed” for almost 10 years.

  • Raymond Firehock

    The discussion is missing the point. We are not losing 2 million jobs. 2 million may choose to stop working because they can get insurance elsewhere (as on a family policy with a preexisting condition). Hey, fellas, if true, then there will be 2 million jobs open for people who do not have them now and want them.

    • StilllHere

      Assuming the skill sets match and the jobs don’t leave for a lower taxed environment, especially after the huge tax increases that are going to be necessary for all that free healthcare and the generally lower tax base.

      • Raymond Firehock

        If the jobs could leave, the bosses would have sent them elsewhere. Fellas, these aren’t your middle class factory jobs…these are low wage/no benefit jobs. Still, as Uncle Mitch says, people (except him) have to adjust their expectations. Including my grandmother sucking up your tax dollars at Social Security. 92 years old? Die, already.

    • James

      At best they’ve left the job market temporarily, (because they still need to pay part of Obamacare). At worse they have left their job and expect the rest of us to foot part of (or all) of the bill.

      • Raymond Firehock

        Let’s round up everyone who is not working, like Ann Romney, and put them to work. You are grasping at straws.

      • Raymond Firehock

        James, you are not making sense. Why would they leave temporarily if they still need the job? And whether they stay or go, if they qualify for a subsidy or for medicaid (thank you, Wal-Mart) the societal responsibity is still shared. Please think before you flounder about.

    • Kathy

      Good riddance to people working “insurance jobs” that they don’t need or want. They make poor workers and they prevent people who may really need those jobs from employment.

      Let’s also not forget there will be a certain number of people who stop working “insurance jobs” and start their own businesses or support themselves otherwise.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    The people are waking up, and its going to get nasty.

    • StilllHere

      Except there’s something good on the tellie so we’re going to watch that first.

  • Bennie BER

    While I applaude CVS for withdrawing tobacco products from their shelves, I think that they got it wrong: tobacco products should be sold ONLY in pharmacies, and ONLY with a prescription.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Medical Tar?

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    The Obama Master Plan for New American Jobs is secured in that secret fortress that also holds the Bush Map of Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq.

    Both on a table underneath the Mission Accomplished banner hanging on the wall.

    • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

      So, *that’s* where they hiding the Climate Change Master Plan – and the Omnipotent Weather Machine!

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    No more uninsured. Yeah!

    Hey, whats with all the unemployed?

    Where’s my Free Lunch!?!?!?

    • lobstahbisque

      I ate your free lunch.

      • Steve__T

        Shouldn’t that be: We ate your free lunch, Signed your elected Government Representatives.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Geez. I wish someone had warned us this would be a net economic loss.

    Oh the joy of selective listening.

  • creaker

    Funny the Republicans had no problem expanding government subsidized insurance to farmers.

    • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

      “Funny the Republicans had no problem expanding government subsidized insurance to giant agribusinesses.”

      There, I fixed it for you! :-)

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Don’t expect much bipartisan criticism around here…..

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        I’m sorry, don’t expect much *principled* bipartisan criticism around here….. people are afraid of being called libertarians.

        • keltcrusader

          libertarians are principled?

    • OnPointComments

      Senate farm bill vote: YES 44 Democrats, 22 Republicans, 2 Independents
      NO 9 Democrats, 23 Republicans

      “We’ve arrived at a farm bill that works for all of America. This bill will strengthen agriculture for years to come. It’s time to get it to the president for signature.” –Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture Committee

  • Coastghost

    ObamaFraud: reducing the size of the American workforce by turning citizens into clients of the state. (Free cradles, free graves.)
    On another hand: if ObamaFraud leads to increases in suicide rates among the unemployed/unemployable or even among the new class of ObamaFraud clients, will suicide prevention be offered through an enhanced ObamaFraud package?

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Where’s the sign up sheet to draft: LARRY SUMMERS FOR PRESIDENT?

    Lair-ree. Lair-ree. Lair-ree.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Hillary is Larry with Long hair. And better looking.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Come on. Goldman Sachs doesn’t pay Larry $400K for two speeches.

  • stephenreal

    The Republican party has to recruit colored people or they are toast as a national party.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Larry Summers v. Mitt Romney. 2016. Either way, you get a ponce.

    That would make four in a row.

    • Government_Banking_Serf

      Ron Paul/Bill Black

      We won’t have change until we move toward a libertarian populist streak, and take on Big Banking, Big Government, Big Military.

      http://reason.com/reasontv/2013/08/09/what-is-libertarian-populism

      • ThirdWayForward

        We wish Ron and Rand Paul were more thoroughgoing and consistent libertarians instead of shills for selfish, narcissistic plutocrats. There are strains of libertarianism that hold that all concentrations of power, whether political or economic, are dangers to individual freedom.

        Once upon a time in the 1970′s and 80′s there was a magazine called Inquiry, which carried such perspectives.

        It’s too bad that libertarian ideas are actively being discredited by associations with the rabid right. Ayn Rand’s selfish, megalomaniacal capitalism is not the only libertarian way.

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          Who is shilling?

          “We wish Ron and Rand Paul were more thoroughgoing and consistent libertarians instead of shills for selfish plutocrats.”

          You really need to back that up.

          There is no greater support for plutocrats than our current status quo.

          In this political moment we seem to have 3 choices:
          1. Status Quo plutocracy, State Capitalism, Neo Liberal/Neo Conservative crap
          2.Socialism
          3. Libertarian Populism

        • James

          First off Ron Paul is not a selfish plutocrat, that is ludicrous.

          Rand Paul…maybe…I hope not, he’s either trying to smuggle his father’s ideas into the Republican party or using his father’s reputation to further his own political career.

          I’m willing to bet on the former, what do we have to loose? Either way he can’t be worse then anyone else.

          Second off Inquiry was published by the Cato institute by and originally funded by one Charles Koch, you have an interested interpretation of the world.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    Who will George Soros be hitting?

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    “Work saves us from three great evils: boredom, vice and need.”

    -Voltaire

    • lobstahbisque

      But what will save us from old French platitudes?

      • stephenreal

        c’est la vie !

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        I’m sorry, just as Obamacare will bring us the French 30 hour work week, it will likely bring along the platitudes….

      • http://read-write-blue.blogspot.com/ RWB

        I didn’t know that platypus came from France. I should have because of the Gauloises they smoke.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Sewage in the water pipes at Sochi. Cheaper than imported American yogurt.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Sochi is at the same latitude as Nice on the Mediterranean coast.

    • lobstahbisque

      “….but it’s nicer, much nicer, in Nice, oo la la.”

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    We have a journOlist

  • Coastghost

    Victoria Nuland: Obama Administration/US State Department free speech champion. (A gold medalist! no competition necessary!)

    • stephenreal

      she isn’t helping.

  • Yar

    Don’t kill the dogs after your guests show up. We hide our garbage much better than the rest of the world. We are no better., look at our exploitation of undocumented immigrants. The produce isle if full of exploited labor.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    How much is that doggy in the stew pot? The one with the waggedy tail.

  • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

    No broadcast Olympics for me and my family. We’ll catch what we can otherwise.

  • stephenreal

    Hillary Clinton can wait to the very last second to announce her run for the roses/whitehouse.

  • 1Brett1

    Seems the neocons can’t decide which spin on the ACA they want to perpetuate. Are the costs of health insurance policies so exorbitant that people can’t afford to purchase them and are going without health insurance because of the dreaded Obamacare? Or are people choosing to become unemployed so Obamacare can pay their way through life?

    Frankly, the new neocon meme about people quitting their jobs so they can live off of Obamacare is outrageous, even by their own propaganda standards…

    • OnPointComments

      Neocon meme? White House press secretary Jay Carney: “Opportunity created by affordable, quality health insurance allows families in America to make a decision about how they will work, or if they will work.”

      • 1Brett1

        People either get employer-sponsored health insurance or they don’t. Unlike before the ACA, their ability to get health insurance if their employer does NOT provide them health insurance benefits is greatly improved. All this means is that those who do NOT have employer-sponsored health insurance now have a much better chance of BUYING their own health insurance than they did prior to the implementation of the ACA.

        You and your ilk’s bastardized interpretation of this is nothing more than silly propaganda and ridiculous hyperbole…Do you seriously believe that people are going, “woohoo, with Obamacare I don’t have to work anymore; I am just going to live off the government! Thanks for the free stuff, Obama!!!”? I guess the answer is “yes” you’ve bought into that conservative media nonsense.

        • OnPointComments

          White House press secretary Jay Carney: “Opportunity created by affordable, quality health insurance allows families in America to make a decision about how they will work, or if they will work.”

          • 1Brett1

            Yeah, you said that before. Being a broken record doesn’t make your absurd interpretation any more plausible.

          • jefe68

            Hey, it’s the First Friday in February Right Wing Meme show, what do you expect?

          • StilllHere

            Somehow we are missing the nuances of this statement. Please find the nearest Obamapologist for the right interpretation.

          • OnPointComments

            Only the most ardent Obamapologists can read the news that Obamacare will result in a reduction in full-time-equivalent employment of about 2.3 million and respond “That’s great!”

          • keltcrusader

            “make a decision about how they will work, or if they will work”

            As in “Maybe I’ll retire now that I can buy affordable insurance myself.” Or maybe “I’ll be a stay-at-home Mom/Dad since we don’t need my extra income just to pay for health insurance. Or maybe “I will finally open that business for myself now that I don’t have to work somewhere JUST FOR THE INSURANCE!”
            man, you are dense

        • hennorama

          1Brett1 — what the CBO report shows is that there will be some number of workers who, due to the provisions of the PPACA, will in effect simply recite the title of the old Johnny Paycheck song “Take This Job and Shove It.”

          • 1Brett1

            Yeah, but those are just country music loving outliers.

    • James

      First off, don’t call me a neo-con

      Second off, why can’t it be both? Every individual is going to have different circumstances.

      • 1Brett1

        I don’t even know you. “Neocon” just means the new variety of conservative (as opposed to old-school conservatives). So, enough of the feigned outrage.

        But, if you wish to perpetuate the nonsense about people quitting their jobs and living off the government because of the implementation of the ACA, then maybe you aren’t a “neocon.” Maybe you’re just a “con,” as in “armchair con artist.”

        • Government_Banking_Serf

          Neocon means a very specific streak of Republican. Easily researched.

          Tea Partiers are not Neocons. Liberty types are not Neocons. etc etc

          Lumping everyone who disagrees with Obama or the DNC as a Neocon may be easy and satisfying, but it’s useless to a conversation.

          • 1Brett1

            As if saying people are quitting their jobs so they can live off the government as a result of the implementation of the ACA encourages conversation…sure, okay.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            What do you mean “saying”? That is just a fact of life today.

            When you face massive deductibles on top of mandated policy rates, the decision to move to a lower income bracket is completely rational.

            Now, on top of the mandate, you want mind control?

          • J__o__h__n

            The Teabaggers have a large number of neocons among their members (probably a majority) and that is the source of most of their funding.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Back it up, Communist.

      • Government_Banking_Serf

        Come on, we know all Democrats are Communists.

        • jefe68

          So what does that make right wingers such as yourself? Fascist…

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Yes jefe, I’m a fascist and you are a communist. Sleep well, I will use less irony tomorrow.

          • jefe68

            For the record I’m more of a Social Democrat. But there where a few Communist in my family, although they lived in Europe.

            By the way, for someone who thinks there being ironic I find it ironic that you did not get the irony of my reply.

    • HonestDebate1

      People are not choosing to be unemployed to follow their dreams. They are unemployed because the universe of jobs is shrinking big time. Obamacare is a huge part of that as I and others have been saying all along. Now the CBO agrees.

      The talking point is a brazen, almost to the point of impressive, attempt to put lipstick on the CBO pig. It just so happens that the meme Obama describes is liberal utopia so the kool-aid, remarkably, is drunk. Besides, it’s the food stamps, welfare checks and endless unemployment benefits that allow you not to work, subsidized health care is just gravy.

      • keltcrusader

        there, there, time to sleep it off (again)

        • HonestDebate1

          There are 9 million fewer available jobs since Obama was immaculated.

          • keltcrusader

            Just give it up, you have absolutely no credibility. Go peddle your useless baloney elsewhere where those are less than discerning where they get their info. Like any republican/conservative website. They don’t let things like facts get in the way of their made-up reality.

  • stephenreal

    I wonder if Snowden has tickets for the opening ceremony?

  • BHA_in_Vermont

    The Olympics will go on whether Ms. Moore watches or not.

    She will buy the products advertized if they are her “usual purchases” whether she watches or not.

    “Boycotting” by not watching changes nothing other than she won’t see the athletes who work for YEARS for the POSSIBLE chance to compete at the Olympics.

    Her loss.

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Tom, nothing on the chilling IRS hearings yesterday and the appearance of abuse of government power against political speech?

    • OnPointComments

      “I want to make three primary points here. First, the IRS scandal is real. It’s not pretend, it’s real. Number two, the IRS scandal is not just a bunch of bone-headed bureaucrats in some remote office contrary to what the President of the United States told the American People on Sunday. And, number 3, the IRS scandal is not over. It is continuing to this day. And, the Department of Justice Investigation is a sham. It is a NON-EXISTENT investigation.“ –Cleta Mitchell, 02/06/2014

      • stephenreal

        another whiny code pink gal?

      • ThirdWayForward

        They should go back and interpret the 1959 law about political activity as it was originally intended by Congress.

        No group left or right, should be a tax-exempt organization if it engages in electoral politics at all. That would remove any discretionary judgement from the hands of the IRS.

        http://www.msnbc.com/the-last-word/odonnell-reminds-politicians-the-real-irs

        QUOTE:
        As O’Donnell has been saying since Monday, the so-called IRS scandal is only the consequence of an older and more basic problem with the organization’s reading of the tax code–specifically, with its reading of Section 501(c)(4), which exempts social welfare groups from paying taxes.

        The law defines such groups as “civic leagues or organizations not organized for profit but operated exclusively for the promotion of social welfare.” Since 1959, the IRS has been reading “exclusively” as “primarily.”

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          Does that include political activities by unions? Media matters?

          What is the justification for 15 instances of of audit or inquiry by a multitude of government agencies into private affairs AFTER the start of political speech?

        • OnPointComments

          Let’s put this in perspective. The IRS processed 501(c)(4) applications under the current rules for more than 50 years. There are over 100,000 501(c)(4) organizations. Yet, for some reason, in 2009 the IRS suddenly and inexplicably becomes confused about the regulations for 501(c)(4)s, and decided the solution was to use inappropriate criteria to identify conservative groups for review, all in the midst of a presidential campaign.

          • keltcrusader

            could it possibly be that they were inundated with a bunch of applications for groups that were falsely trying to claim exempt status to which they weren’t entitled?

    • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

      Is that actual investigation, or Issa Hyperbole?

      • ThirdWayForward

        It’s all fabricated outrage, just like Benghazi, and all their other little memes.

        They know exactly how to push the buttons of conservatives — it is amazing how completely gullible large numbers of people can be. Of course if you believe that the world was created less than 10,000 years ago and humans coexisted with dinosaurs, then you are ripe for Fox’s stream of disinformation.

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          Your IRS audit is on its way.

          • ThirdWayForward

            Not a problem.

        • HonestDebate1

          Phony scandals? Fox? Really?

          • Ray in VT

            Which network continues to push misinformation about Benghazi? Somebody has to be doing the legwork to keep the conspiracy thinking inclined opponents of the President up to date on the finest of the wild speculation that gets churned up within the GOP and other figures.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            What misinformation?

          • Ray in VT

            Most of what they run about Benghazi for instance.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Dodge. Specifics please. Pick your favorite.

          • Ray in VT

            Forces weren’t mobilized. The President wasn’t in the loop. People were told to stand down. Nothing indicated some sort of initial protest.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Your list is inconsistent with the FoxNews Benghazi coverage that I observe (my source is mostly from Special Report).

            There is a lot of confusion and inconsistency in reporting mostly due to lack of transparency by the regime. Somehow you want to blame this on Foxnews?

            -The president wasn’t in the loop
            I’ve never heard that mentioned. In fact the recent reporting is that General Carter Hamm briefed Pannetta and Dempsey within 15 minutes of the start of the attack and then 90 minutes later they met with Obama to brief him on the report that it was a coordinated terror attack.
            -People were told to stand down
            Well here is a CNN report:
            “Former deputy chief of mission in Libya: U.S. military assets told to stand down”

            http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/06/politics/benghazi-whistleblower/

            And a more recent FoxNews report which discusses military readiness.

            http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/01/13/benghazi-transcripts-us-military-woefully-unprepared-for-attack-documents-show/

            - Nothing indicated some sort of initial protest.
            Isn’t it true that none of the FBI transcripts of survivor interviews indicate a evidence of a protest? Also, none of the surveillance videos indicate a protest?
            Instead there is a NYTimes reporter that interviewed someone on the street that said there might have been a protest.

            And that is enough for Susan Rice to go on 5 SUnday shows and unequivocally state that the attack was spawned by protest that was caused by a youtube video.

            Sorry your entire thesis doesn’t hold water.

          • Ray in VT

            It doesn’t hold water if one buys into the bizarro world that is the conservative info-tainment universe that perpetuates the belief in anti-Obama conspiracies. I’m not saying that others haven’t done it as well, just that Fox is worse.

            Fox on Obama that night:
            http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2013/02/11/now-know-president-obama-was-mia-on-benghazi/

            http://crooksandliars.com/heather/krauthammer-hypes-myth-obama-was-missing-n

            Stand down order came from Fox:

            http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/10/26/cia-operators-were-denied-request-for-help-during-benghazi-attack-sources-say/

            It is interesting that CNN used that term in the article title, despite officials saying repeatedly that no such order was given http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/erik-wemple/wp/2013/12/16/ap-benghazi-story-challenges-fox-news-stand-down-scoop/.

            Perhaps Special Report didn’t cover it, although one of my favorite sources notes 85 times that it was used in prime time coverage: http://www.mediamatters.org/blog/2013/06/27/no-benghazi-stand-down-order-was-given-another/194644

            And who exactly was it that has said that there was a protest following retrieval of the closed circuit consular footage sometime well after the 17th? Some initial reports from the ground did report some sort of initial protest.

            Take a look at the totality of Rice’s comments. Most of them were pretty well in line with talking points approved by the CIA at that time.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Demanding answers is pushing misinformation? C’mon Ray, you don’t have to like Fox News as a source of Raw Data to think that avoiding questions like did Panetta tell Obama it was a terrorist attack within the hour, but Team O decided that would be bad reelection news and that weathering the after-the-fact storm now brewing would be worth winning the election, is Nixonesque, and not worth defending.

            Not worth defending, unless you are a DNC op or member of team Obama.

          • Ray in VT

            It certainly sounds like you have firmly put yourself in the camp that believes in the conspiracy.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            What conspiracy?

            You honestly don’t believe that whole Susan Rice nonsense wasn’t about protecting Obama’s reelection and Clintons future?

            You do recall the Susan Rice nonsense, and the denials for weeks when asked about it.

            The fact that reality is now called conspiracy, by a fine guy like you even, is disappointing.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            So the fact that the questioning and denying was only broadcast on Fox makes it untrue?

            This is sad. Boy cries wolf maybe leading up, but sad none the less.

          • Ray in VT

            I think that most of her comments on the Sunday talk shows, Wallace aside, reflected what was then in the best estimations of the CIA’s people.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            “I think that most of her comments on the Sunday talk shows, Wallace aside, reflected what was THEN in the best estimations of the CIA’s people.”

            Emphasis added, because that is factually untrue. Unless you are making the case that the coverup/hush-up was effective enough to keep the “CIAs people” in the dark for 2 weeks. Same difference.

          • Ray in VT

            Ahhh, so the CIA’s assessment people were in on the conspiracy too? That’s certainly a far better explanation that knowledge about just what did and was happening on the ground half a world away wasn’t totally known a whole 4-6 days later.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            Military top leaders and Leon Panetta knew within an hour that it looked, smelled, quacked like a terrorist duck. Period. They met with Obama.

            What are you doing?

          • Ray in VT

            I find the use of “knew” to be interesting, given all that was unknown at the time, and considering what was going on in Cairo at roughly the same time. I think that claims to knowledge are overblown, to say the least, given the situation. But I guess that saying that the CIA’s people were a part of the coverup is far easier than to acknowledge such ongoing chaos and uncertainty.

          • Government_Banking_Serf

            I gave you the caveat that they left the CIA underlings out of the loop…..

          • Ray in VT

            Ahh, so the information coming into the CIA’s assessment people was just manipulated. I bet that those people don’t do any homework and only spit out info based upon whatever the higher ups give them. That sounds reasonable.

          • HonestDebate1

            Alrighty then.

          • Ray in VT

            That’s sick.

        • OnPointComments

          I agree with you; the outrage is totally fabricated and insincere.

          “I’ve reviewed the Treasury Department watchdog’s report, and the misconduct that it uncovered is inexcusable. It’s inexcusable, and Americans are right to be angry about it, and I am angry about it. I will not tolerate this kind of behavior in any agency, but especially in the IRS, given the power that it has and the reach that it has into all of our lives…regardless of how this conduct was allowed to take place, the bottom line is, it was wrong.” –President Obama

          “Those (IRS actions) were, I think, as everyone can agree, if not criminal, outrageous and unacceptable and we are examining the facts to see if they are criminal violations.” –Attorney General Eric Holder

          They were outraged that they got caught, not outraged at the conduct of the IRS.

    • StilllHere

      Too busy covering traffic jams in Jersey.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Don’t forget: Ralph Kiner died this week. Much bigger than Leno, Letterman, or the rest of that ilk.

  • Kathy

    I love winter sports and look forward to the Winter Olympics,but we won’t be watching. I might have gone ahead and caught some of it, but thankfully the Russians are going out of their way to make sure I’m reminded of why we should be boycotting them with things like the statement that gay athletes and visitors shouldn’t go after children sexually.

  • Coastghost

    “But, Edward Snowden did NOTHING to compromise US security or US interests . . .” — our trusted media consensus.

    • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

      Are you saying you would rather not know about the NSA spying?

      • stephenreal

        I’m saying he sold us all out to the communist bloc countries.

      • Coastghost

        I did not need the traitor Edward Snowden to tell me about it publicly. (If treason can be construed to merit capital punishment, Snowden arguably deserves his own firing squad, considering the extent of Snowden’s own revelations.)

        • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

          So, you have a secret source?

          • Coastghost

            Didn’t need one, didn’t want one, didn’t ask for one.

  • levrier

    I love dogs, but I do know that in many countries, stray and starving dogs are a real menace. I know someone teaching in a Russian village and reports that they attack people, pets and livestock, plus some have rabies. I wish there were a humane solution, but “Spay and Neuter” is a pretty low priority in poor communities. The people came to Sochi and so did the dogs.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Jimmy Carter was right to boycott. Had Russia stayed the F out of Afghanistan there would have been no Taliban, no Al Qaeda. Carter was right. Russia was wrong.
    –The Book of World History

    • ThirdWayForward

      The history is more complicated and ambivalent than that. Reagan armed the Mujahadeen precursors of the Taliban as Cold War surrogates (much like how he supported the contras to destabilize the Nicaraguan revolution and made an unholy, explicitly illegal deal with the Iranians to deliver arms to them). The Taliban was created by the horrific nature of that guerrilla war. When the Soviets withdrew in 1989, a power vacuum was left and this allowed the Taliban an entry into power.

      The part that the movie “Charlie Wilson’s War” (2007) got right was that we did very, very little in the aftermath of the Soviet invasion and occupation to help stabilize Afghanistan (i.e. what was derisively called by the right, engaging in “nation-building” — they so easily support money for guns and troops, but are always against any development aid that improves the lives of ordinary people in these places). The part that the movie missed was the connection between our failure to follow-up in Afghanistan and the events that led up to the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

      Maybe if Reagan had not played with Cold War proxy wars, there might never have been a Taliban, but obviously it is very difficult to say one way or another with any degree of certainty, and all parties involved acted badly, in different ways and degrees.

      It’s time we get out of Afghanistan. In an ideal world, the Afghans would have a national referendum on whether they want the US military presence to continue, and shortly after that the US would have a national referendum on whether to stay.

      We spend $1 million for every soldier we put there, $100 billion/year. The money might be better spent on development, but their government is completely corrupt (much worse even than New Jersey). We need to find a better and more sustainable way to leave Afghanistan this time.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    It was Richard Engel who had the computers tapped.

    • stephenreal

      You would be wise to hold onto your computer in Paris too.

  • Yar

    Be careful, like when you are in Target!

    • stephenreal

      Another Russian hit job. thankyou mr. Snowden

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Now Engel will have to rebut the rebuttal.

  • AliceOtter33

    Why is this morning the first time I’ve heard anyone on NPR mention the Woody Allen scandal? It’s not old just old news, old gossip. It’s a case study of the phenomenon of Twitter and the internet in the court of public opinion. Whether he did it or not, it has already pushed the issue of sexual abuse front and center in a way that I think will be a paradigm shift.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    We only drive BMW bobsleds.
    –The Jamaican bobsled team

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Bill Gates clone. No change here.

  • J__o__h__n

    Returning more money to the shareholders shouldn’t be the main focus. Focusing on quarterly profits instead of long term growth does not benefit the corporation.

    • hennorama

      J_o_h_n — corporate managers and directors have several choices as to what to do:

      Invest for growth, which has a longer time horizon, and may or may not add to employment.

      Invest for efficiency, which has an almost immediate impact, and almost always leads to less employment.

      Maintain the status quo by doing very little.

      They also have to deal with Shareholders, many of whom are only transient as owners, and whose interests therefore are often VERY short-term.

      The best corporate managers and directors juggle all of the concerns of various constituencies, and combine the choices into their actions.

      Unfortunately, the best are few and far between.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    PSH. No Humphrey Bogart. No Laurence Olivier. No Robert Ryan. No John Barrymore. No Dana Andrews. No Frederic March.

    Move on already.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    And No Jason Robards, Jr., either.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    50 years of Dr. Strangelove, too.

  • Coastghost

    New corporate motto for NPR: “Bringing you the last fifty years . . . for the next fifty years.”

  • ThirdWayForward

    Interesting that there was no mention of the exploding Chris Christie pay-to-play corruption scandal. Every time Christie opens his mouth, he is telling a different story, and there is a steady stream of evidence coming out that the modus operandi of the Christie gang was to dole out hurricane Sandy relief money only to cities whose mayors supported Christie, and for construction projects unrelated to Sandy reconstruction.

    It’s very obvious that Christie has been lying through his teeth about the George Washington bridge lane closures, and that he orchestrated the whole thing. First he tried to get the press to ignore the closures, then he belittled anyone who took them seriously, then he said that he really hadn’t looked into it, and now he is saying that he dispatched his two top lieutenants to investigate the closings immediately after they occurred. He’s squirming.

    It amazes me how the press has been so slow to explicitly examine the possibility that Christie is an outright liar. Today it came out that Christie’s first campaign in the 1990′s made patently false allegations that his opponent was under investigation, and that he had to issue a public apology as part of a lawsuit settlement against him.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      David Gregory and the ‘press the meat’ crowd has spent the bulk last 3 shows attacking Christie despite little new information. Their favorite mayor that had alleged misconduct mysteriously disappeared with no reporting when holes appeared in her ‘story’. Tim Russert is turning over in his grave.

      Hey, what is new with Ray Nagin? I’ve seen nothing in the national media. #CorruptionTrial

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Good news? The latest RSS satellite records (the most accurate) show no warming for 17 years, 5 months.

    Here is a guy with a ruler easily exposing propaganda on the temperature record released by the WH science adviser, John Holdren. The propagandists have no shame.

    The official line:
    If you like your Hockey Stick, you can keep your Hockey Stick.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=nwWqZ6_J2w0

    • Ray in VT

      Interesting that this from NOAA, which looks at data collected via a number of means and organizations, although only going through 2010, seems to contradict that http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/upper-air/2010/13 and http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/upper-air/.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        The record is the record.
        The issue exposed in the video is how Holdren visually distorted the record. Also, note how he stopped at 2009 which wasn’t pointed out in the video. #Propaganda

        Here is an honest reporting of the entire record in the satellite era:

        http://www.drroyspencer.com/latest-global-temperatures/

        • Ray in VT

          I don’t exactly trust someone who thinks that intelligent design is a valid scientific theory of origins to honestly report on an issue where one has clearly picked a side. I think that NOAA is a far better, and more trustworthy, source.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            You sound like a science denier.

          • Ray in VT

            Why? Because I doubt the ability of people without college degrees, creationists or people who say that climate change can’t be happening because of God to accurately and honestly report on the issue? It’s not like I’m claiming some sort of conspiracy by scientists, or perhaps suggesting that agencies like NOAA don’t even know how to report their own data.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Who said NOAA doesn’t know how to report their own data? The above video was about John Holdren’s propaganda.

            And what does your rant have to do with Spencer and Christy? They both have college degrees and are respected peer reviewed climate scientists. I still don’t understand your beef with the satellite record chart I posted. Are you claiming there is an inaccuracy?

          • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

            They are outliers.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            The satellite record is an outlier? I don’t know what that means.

          • http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/ Neil Blanchard

            The satellite data confirm anthropogenic climate change.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            That is the silliest statement I’ve seen today.

            What the satellite record does is show temperature of the atmosphere over time.

          • Ray in VT

            Well, if Spencer is right, then NOAA must be wrong, based upon the data that they have posted that I have linked to. Based upon that information, then I think that NOAA would claim that it is inaccurate.

            Given how a number of their positions and quotes line up with information from sources like NOAA and other respected bodies, I’m not sure how respected they may be in the field, but that would be a question for other climate scientists. Spencer’s connection to the Heartland Institute raises questions for me.

            The Youtube video won’t play on my pc. What is the supposed “propaganda” that Holdren has pushed? Suggesting that the recent polar vortex may have been influenced by climate change? I have seen it reported that climate change could be playing a role in influencing that event.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            “The Youtube video won’t play on my pc. What is the supposed “propaganda” that Holdren has pushed?”
            They show how Holdren manipulated the graphics to make the warming ‘look’ like it is increasing more than it is.

          • Ray in VT

            Considering that according to the NOAA links that I used satellite data shows lower troposphere temperatures increasing by .23 or .25 F/decade, then isn’t a graphic showing no increase wrong or manipulated, unless NOAA is totally wrong.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Watch the video when you get a chance. The humor will be lost in translation otherwise.

            I still don’t see the issue you have with the Spencer graph. It is the complete satellite record and does show warming of +.29c since the start of the record.

          • Ray in VT

            All of the right’s “humor” is lost on me.

            I suppose that my issue would be reconciling no warming for over 17 years versus NOAA information that says otherwise.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Where does NOAA say the RSS data doesn’t show no warming for that last 17 years, 5 months? That would be interesting if they deny that data.

          • Ray in VT

            The link that I provided says RSS data shows a decadal trend upwards. It’s right there. Are they wrong?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Ah. I think we found the source of your confusion. Decadal trend is a 10 year window which only goes back to 2003. Right?
            Go back 17 years, 5 months and you’ll see something different. No inconsistency. Voila.

          • Ray in VT

            Ah, I see. We can pick an arbitrary date as a starting point so that we can reach the conclusion that we want. Why not pick 2008 as a starting point, and then we can see a .34 decadal increase, or go back a bit further than 1998 and see a trend or go to 1999 or 2000 and see a trend. The long term trend is upwards. Picking a starting point that allows one to reach a conclusion in which one already believes isn’t exactly on the up an up.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Ah, on that we agree however the longer the window the better.

            FYI, one of gripes with the Holdren propaganda was his cherry picking a starting point. LOL!!!!

            I’m not sure why you are arguing. The record is the record. Every climate scientist agrees that the temperature has been basically flat for almost two decades thus that mad search for the “missing heat”.

          • Ray in VT

            So why not go back another year and get an increase, or forward a year and get an increase? I am arguing because I think that your sources are misleading people with their tactics, and, given some of the research that I have read, there isn’t a “mad search” for missing heat. It seems pretty solid that it’s going into the oceans. What happens when the ocean can’t do that any more? I doubt that surface temperatures will continue to stagnate.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            I think you are misreading about what is happening in the climate science community. The big picture is there has been no ‘statistically significant’ warming for close to 2 decades in all the temperature records (surface and satellite) despite a 20% increase in CO2 emissions. None of the models predicted this. As a result there was a mad scramble to hypothesize where the “missing heat” went: deep ocean, arctic extrapolation, etc.

            ” I doubt that surface temperatures will continue to stagnate.”
            OK. One man’s opinion. Personally, I have no idea but I know we’ll be better of with slight warming than a significant cooling trend that takes us back to the little ice age.

            #SettledScience

          • Ray in VT

            Hardly. It may seem that way to you because your sources seem to primarily seem to be from the “skeptical” community.

            It is true that surface temperatures have been fairly static, and that was not predicted by the models. Such shortcomings have been jumped upon in the communities that you seem to favor, while positions advocating anything but greenhouse gas driven, mad made effects continue to not have any sort of significant support in the scientific community.

            The scramble seems to be the constant drum beat of doubt that some seem to want to spread. It often seems to be just about their only product.

            There are factors in the climate that are not known, and I think that few will claim that all is known. However, the fact that some things are not totally understood or predicted does not change the research underlying the science regarding climate change and human influences, despite the nay saying from a particular sliver of the scientific community.

            For instance, take this http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2010/20100920_oceanwarming.html and http://www.nodc.noaa.gov/OC5/3M_HEAT_CONTENT/. Now, with those bars headed up, how long can that happen? Certainly not indefinitely, and what happens then? With that much heat accumulating in the climate system, then it seems that a new ice age is not at all likely. Patrick Michaels was, I think, predicting one 20 years ago, but that didn’t work out too well.

            #merchantsofdoubt #headsinthesand

          • WorriedfortheCountry
          • Ray in VT

            Exactly. Pick an arbitrary starting point. What is the rolling average? Where does that go? Where are the points here headed?

            http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/temp-and-precip/msu/global/lt/dec/ytd

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            btw – from Dr. Spencer’s ‘about’:

            “Dr. Spencer’s research has been entirely supported by U.S. government
            agencies: NASA, NOAA, and DOE. He has never been asked by any oil
            company to perform any kind of service. Not even Exxon-Mobil.”

            Amazing how the government is the sole funding of this charlatan.

          • Ray in VT

            So he must do his work for Heartland and the George C. Marshall Institute pro-bono. Perhaps the government isn’t getting a great bang for its buck based upon what some other climate scientists have to say about some of his work and its shortcomings here:

            http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2011/07/29/282584/climate-scienists-debunk-latest-bunk-by-denier-roy-spencer/

        • lobstahbisque

          I’m so glad the global warming non- problem has been solved by the right, and those at the right hand of God. Now whose going to solve the non-pollution problem and the non-overpopulation problem by denying they exist?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Gee, I could use a little global warming right now. Brrrr.

            Again, the right didn’t solve anything. It is what it is.

            There are plenty of problems (including pollution –especially in China) but global warming doesn’t appear to be one of the big problems right now.

          • lobstahbisque

            When? The longer we wait, the more expensive it’s going to be to fix it.

  • Government_Banking_Serf

    No Comments on a proven Commodities Market Manipulator getting a job at the Commodity and Futures Trading Commission?

    Will be plenty of griping when the next corrupt bubble pops…

    Maybe we should try vigilance a bit earlier this time?

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-02-06/farce-complete-blythe-masters-joining-cftc

  • OnPointComments

    I turned on NPR yesterday afternoon as someone was saying that California is the nut basket of the world. I immediately pictured Nancy Pelosi, Barbara Boxer, Henry Waxman, and Maxine Waters, and thought to myself that truer words have never been spoken. Turns out it was a segment about agriculture, not politics.

    • StilllHere

      Your confusion is understandable.

    • Raymond Firehock

      At least you listen to NPR. You might learn summat. In time, in time.

    • Fred Fletcher-Fierro

      Those are four people, and their views don’t represent the whole state. Waxman isn’t running for a 21st term and the other three aren’t getting any younger.

  • Steve__T

    No discussion or words on this?
    Senate Republicans have blocked progress on a bill that would have restored jobless aid to 1.7 million unemployed people who saw their benefits expire in December. The bid to restore the benefits fell just one vote shy of passing.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Any reporting about Harry Reid blocked a proposal by Senator Kelly Ayotte to extend unemployment benefits IF it was paid for by eliminating the $8B in EITC refunds to illegal immigrants?
      I’m not sure why this is controversial and needs to be tied to extending unemployment benefits to those out of work > 99 weeks.

      • StilllHere

        So not only are they taking our jobs, they’re taking our unemployment benefits? It pays to break the law.

      • Steve__T
        • WorriedfortheCountry

          Since the unemployment rate is now down to 6.6% are extensions really required?

          If you can’t find a job after 99 weeks of 3 interviews a week then maybe what is needed is a job training program for the long term unemployed.

          • Steve__T

            The rate is down due to 1.7M were dropped (extensions).

            Three interviews a week, Ha ha ha ha that’s a joke right?

            Training would be great, especially if you got it early enough to get back into the work force.

            Question: How do you go to training with out funds?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Three interviews a week, Ha ha ha ha that’s a joke right?

            why is that a joke

          • Steve__T

            Oh you haven’t heard, their are no jobs!
            How do you get one interview if the job doesn’t exist?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            To be eligible for benefits here in MA you need 3 interviews documented per week.

            Maybe it is different in other states.

          • Steve__T

            It’s different in every State.

          • J__o__h__n

            No, you need to document that you applied for three jobs per week.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Maybe we need tax simplification reform and regulatory reform to encourage economic growth and thus create jobs.

            Long overdue, don’t you think?

          • Steve__T

            Simplification for complex situations usually make them unmanageable.

          • FrankensteinDragon

            because employers have to grant those interviews and they are not

          • FrankensteinDragon

            what is needed is jobs. period. we have no jobs in america.

            to blame the unemployed is like blaming a rape victim or a murder victim. LIke blaming treyvon martin for being killed. Or blaming slaves for being abducted and enslaved by white red state Americans–which they did–saying they were less than human and later 3/5ths human. Why do red state jingoists always blame the people they bully, rape and kill? Why do they blame the people when they cant find a job when the corporate pigs are sending the jobs overseas?

      • hennorama

        WftC — you might want to check your sources. There’s no such thing as “… the $8B in EITC refunds to illegal immigrants.”

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          Do you have an accurate number?

          The inspector general report had it at $4.2B in 2011. I doubt its gone down.

          • hennorama

            WftC — here’s a hint: it ain’t the EITC.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            What is the EITC?

          • hennorama

            WftC — If you seriously need me to answer that question …

            Respectfully, please educate yourself and/or check your sources regarding your initial claim.

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Sorry, that was a typo.

            You said “it ain’t the EITC”
            I meant to say: “what ain’t the EITC”

            I know very well what the EITC is and I also know about the SSNs issued to illegal immigrants to allow them to be written EITCs checks at tax time. In fact, many of these checks are sent directly overseas as was reported by the IG.

          • hennorama

            WftC — you might want to reread what “was reported by the IG.” Alternatively, try doing a simple web search using your words, as quoted in my initial reply to you.

          • HonestDebate1

            Gee wiz, just say it! What are you talking about?

          • WorriedfortheCountry

            Happy Hour might have been involved.

      • OnPointComments

        The point of your comment is valid, but Sen. Ayotte’s amendment is about the ACTC, not the EITC. Ayotte’s amendment would make a simple fix to the U.S. tax code to require filers to have Social Security Numbers in order to qualify for the Additional Child Tax Credit, which the Joint Committee on Taxation estimates would save approximately $20 billion over 10 years (http://www.ayotte.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=1217).

        Who could oppose this? Harry Reid, of course. Another senator who opposed the amendment is the despicable Barbara Boxer, who accused Senator Ayotte of “going after children” by requiring SSNs for those who claim the ACTC.

        • WorriedfortheCountry

          Thank you OPC for the clarification.
          I also appreciate how you did it without snark and ridicule. :)

          • hennorama

            WftC — what you’re actually complaining about is your own lack of knowledge and curiosity, both of which were on full display despite all of the generously given gentle nudges.

    • pete18

      I’m curious as to what your position is on this? Is there ever a limit to how many months unemployment should be paid out? If so, what are the parameters for when this should happen?

      • gslouch

        I don’t know. Is there a limit to struggling to put food on the table when your job has been eliminated?

        • pete18

          So there should be no time limits on how long unemployment benefits are paid? Ever?

  • hennorama

    Peter Newton — Best of luck in your ongoing search.

    Various entities use the term “discouraged workers” because the Bureau of Labor Statistics uses it as a category, defined as follows:

    “Discouraged workers (Current Population Survey)

    “Persons not in the labor force who want and are available for a job and who have looked for work sometime in the past 12 months (or since the end of their last job if they held one within the past 12 months), but who are not currently looking because they believe there are no jobs available or there are none for which they would qualify.”

    See:
    http://www.bls.gov/bls/glossary.htm#D
    http://www.bls.gov/cps/lfcharacteristics.htm#discouraged

  • Coastghost

    “Diplomat: a trusted bureaucrat, academic, or celebrity whose job it is to antagonize and provoke her nation’s allies, when not otherwise appeasing her nation’s enemies or misrepresenting her country’s interests abroad.”
    –a working synonym for “Nuland” . . . .

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Tom ignores the Obama SuperBowl interview. Why?

    #WillfulIgnorance

    • FrankensteinDragon

      what are you talking about? Are you referring to red state simpletons who believe America the beautiful is the national anthem, and hate diversity?

      I live out of country and i dont care about football so I dont understand.

      • WorriedfortheCountry

        Oh my!! You plead ignorance yet you decide to reply and put your prejudices on full display.

        Mr. Obama was interviewed during the superbowl pre-game as he has been in each of his years of Presidency. This time he was asked several questions that have never been put to him. History will judge how he answered.

        You will be excused for being unaware because of the: #MediaBlackout

        • hennorama

          WftC — which is better: someone who is direct about their lack of caring and understanding, or someone who makes a claim that is completely inaccurate, and when this is pointed out, doesn’t bother to educate themselves regarding their inaccurate claim?

  • WorriedfortheCountry

    Obama just signed the $1T farm bill larded with bipartisan pork.
    #BlameBothParties

    • OnPointComments

      From a letter written by Rep. Mark Sanford on why he voted against the $1.012 trillion omnibus spending bill when it had $16 million in it for the the port of Charleston, the district he represents:

      Out of a $1.012 trillion bill, that [$16 million] represents one thousandth of one percent of the total spending in the bill!

      In my mind it’s that I didn’t think the other 99 percent fit with what taxpayers were looking for.

      More significantly, a bill like this represents a way of doing business that is bankrupting our country. We are given a massive 1,582-page bill and then asked to vote on it in less than 48 hours.

      We are essentially asked to take on the approach Nancy Pelosi had suggested at the time of the Affordable Care Act, and vote on it and then find out what’s in it – because there is no way one can fully research a 1,582-page bill in two days…

      There is something in bills like these for everyone, and it is for that reason I think we should be all the more circumspect about looking at a bill like this if we are going to watch out for the taxpayer.

  • OnPointComments

    A misrepresentation from the State of the Union:

    THE GENDER WAGE GAP IS A MYTH
    The wage gap myth, most recently used by President Obama during the State of the Union Address, states that women make only 77 cents to every dollar that men earn. AEI resident scholar Christina Hoff Sommers debunks the bogus statistic

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vyFjPHwF6To

    • FrankensteinDragon

      why dont you offer the statistics here rather than send us to youtube. i dont often follow links. if you said more i might be more inclined to do so. Consequently, I think what you are saying is bunk. But i will say, that more women have jobs than men. more women are in college. more women have better performance in college. more men drop out. more men commit suicide. more men are less likely to even apply for college. women are replacing men in the job market. even in blue collar work where most jobs in america are service jobs–waitresses, clerks, secretaries, shopping mall attendants, teachers–most are women. Its far easier for a woman to get a job as a waitperson than a man.

      Warning: What I am about to say is anecdotal and probably misogynist……

      One reason is women are pretty. Another reason is women tend to be pretty ruthless waitresses/ executives/police/politicians/bureaucrats –(as waitresses) undermining fellow workers for tips, and at the same time making money for the restaurant by depriving customers of requests. men tend to be more acquiescent–or kind to customers, who might give in more for that extra side of sauce or free drink.

      Conclusion: companies prefer the lioness in capitalism–when its about profit, not social cohesion.

      On the other hand, empathetic women–the koala bears and kitties–often enter social jobs like social workers, and teaching–which are some of the only jobs left in america. And are more likely to get a job in social welfare over a man.

      So all in all, women have more opportunities. Men are discriminated against in many ways. men are expected to be savage bullies fighting wars and laying pipe or foreclosing on the elderly while contaminating the environment. Men need to pull together and get back to earth. Our role models are all action hero maniac killers.

  • Cacimo

    Shame so little time devoted to the Obamacare disaster.

  • Coastghost

    Pick one:

    Victoria Nuland has performed her job admirably, demonstrating good ol’ American candor and honesty: we need more
    diplomats like Victoria Nuland telling allies what we really think of them, and in more parts of the world! (A)

    Victoria Nuland has lost all credibility with our remaining
    disaffected European allies: Secretary Kerry, her immediate superior, should fire her ASAP if he has not yet done so. (B)

    Victoria Nuland has lost all credibility with our remaining
    disaffected European allies: she should have the good sense to resign her position immediately, if she has not yet done so. (C)

    Victoria Nuland has lost all credibility with our remaining
    disaffected European allies: she should be forced to resign her position immediately, if she has not yet been forced to do so. (D) or

    Victoria Nuland got caught in a disturbing gaffe that has
    seriously mangled her credibility as a US diplomat, but since the US as a nation cannot boast any innate superiority, she can stay on representing the US abroad. (E)

    • HonestDebate1

      Don’t rule out a promotion.

    • Joachim110

      I think D is appropriate. The U.S. and our Diplomats have not yet understood that we do not have any leverage, that most countries out there have more money in the bank and we are considered a big mouth and bully one can truly ignore. It seems our diplomats have only military and security on mind, while other countries use their foreign posts to promote their trade. We need some new thinkers in the state department and in our government post that actually understand whats going on out there.

  • davecm

    Wow! a week of revelations and a panic rush by Dems. to spin and make excuses,
    * CBO report on Obamacare and loss of 2,3 MILLION full time jobs, The spin by the Dems. was borderline humorous.
    * 100,000+ new jobs created in Jan. , 6.6% unemployment, sounds great. Lets do some math, 100,000 new jobs in one month plus 300,000+ jobless claims a week. Somebody help me with the math????
    *Obama claims “not even a smidget of corruption” Maybe he means, I meant a” tall tell”. Maybe if the IRS gets bonuses they will do a better job with more money, they can have better tea parties?
    Sorry about complaining, I’ii take some advice from someone, at this point, what difference does it make.

    • FrankensteinDragon

      1. what are you trying to say? get to the point.

      2. if the military was abolished today and a million jobs lost because of it i would applaud. Lots of people lost jobs when slavery was abolished too.

      Some jobs are just wrong. Coal is wrong. fracking is wrong. dont frack with my water! dont frack with my air! oil is wrong. slash em all ban it and jail em!

      3. Insurance agents are bad em’kay–bad. If they lost jobs good. to hell with them.

      4. the are bad jobs and good jobs. we need good jobs.
      weatherization. work corps. green tech. sustainable housing codes and construction. mass transit. sea travel by sail and steam and solar…..health care jobs–in a national health are system. more teachers. lets have jobs that build our society and give us something to be proud of–not jobs that tear it down, kill people, and loot and plunder.

      lets criminalize gun manufacturers–slash all those millions of jobs if need be. to hell with them.

      lets create organic CSAs and co-ops–those are real society building, environmentally friendly, people friendly prosperous jobs.

      lets kill Monsanto and gm–to hell with those jobs.

      lets kill corporate media jobs–these are useless criminals that belong behind bars not making millions draining our economy and polluting minds. frack them!

      lets criminalize cars powered by fossil fuels and create small diverse co-op green car manufacturers.

      in WW2 we mobilized the country overnight. now we make excuses. And we are facing enormous world changing events.

      • HonestDebate1

        It breaks my heart that you believe such bad things about so many people.

      • JONBOSTON

        You sound like a follower of Chairman Mao’s cultural revolution. It didn’t work so well for the 25 million Chinese who died as a result and the hundreds of millions who starved or were tortured so why do you think it would work here in the US? You really need to broaden your horizon’s beyond Mao’s little red book.

      • William

        What is wrong with fracking? The EPA has blessed it and it has been use for 50 or more years.

      • davecm

        What is your point in all this reply?????/

  • FrankensteinDragon

    Its a good thing CVS is taking toxic public air polluting drugs off the shelves, but lets be honest–CVS is located in places inconvenient for most smokers–most smokers dont drop into cvs for smokes. Most of them are in shopping malls and plazas –not the corner store.

    A real story would be gas stations or 7-11s taking smokes off the shelf.

    CVS is exploiting this for image. The fact is they dont sell many smokes and it makes sense to stop purchasing them.

    • John Cedar

      When CVS stops selling alcohol then we would take them seriously that their business decisions are influenced by philanthropy.

      Lots of companies do press releases in order to promote a good image of themselves. I don’t blame CVS for trying to do the same. But in this case it is our state run media that is exploiting by lying and repeating the story as one of their top stories.

      Tobacco sales involve 50 different state’s laws, health department fines, licenses and fees with the state and federal government. It involves stamping the cigarettes in many states with state specific tax stamps, which makes self distribution a logistic nightmare . It is clear that CVS made their decision because they can make more profit with the shelf space, and the workforce that managed the category, enforced and devised their internal polices and arranged for the purchase and distribution of tobacco.

    • Steve__T

      You evidently don’t smoke. Honestly It depends where you are, it’s locations are different throughout the US. In Fayetteville,NC CVS is on every other corner. They also sell Food, Beer & Wine, making it a one stop shop. And most are either next to gas stations or very close.

      If they didn’t sell much tobacco why are they looking to loose 2B a year?

      • John Cedar

        They sell only 1.5 billion in tobacco but are also including as a loss, the general loss of sales of the other unrelated products smokers might buy when they stop in to get their smokes.

  • HonestDebate1

    You are correct, it was Carney not Obama. Thanks.

  • HonestDebate1

    Wisconsin is a great blueprint for fiscal sanity and economic success.

    • John Cedar

      It is a great example of achieving victory by dividing and conquering. By letting the cops and firefighters keep their outrageous pay and benifits, they were able to just hone in on the teachers and stick it to them. Scott walker for POTUS! His kind of compromise is the kind we need.

      • William

        That is how Obama did it.

      • HonestDebate1

        That’s actually a brilliant point.

  • OnPointComments

    Rev. William Barber II, head of the North Carolina NAACP, has organized a “Moral March on Raleigh” rally for today. The march and mass rally are to protest various North Carolina laws and policies, including North Carolina’s election laws that add a voter ID component.

    Protesters joining the march and rally have been advised as follows in a handout titled “Important Dos and Don’ts for Marchers!!!”

    DO bring photo identification (driver’s license, passport or other valid photo id) with you and keep it on your person at all times.

    • WorriedfortheCountry

      Hilarious!!

    • pete18

      Typical.

      • jefe68

        Your reaction is typical right wing belligerence.

    • 1Brett1

      TRANSLATION: “Yeah, only those affected blacks should go to the voter ID protest in Raleigh, N.C.!! Elderly blacks, infirm blacks, poor blacks who live far away from a DMV and have no transportation, etc., only those types with no ID, only those who meet those aformentioned criteria should protest!! Those black folks who already have their ID or have the means to get an ID should stay away!! We don’t need no uppity blacks speaking for other blacks; Barack and Michelle Obama have already done too much of that, right?! Poor people should stay away, too, unless of course they are black with no ID. All white liberals, especially if they already have an ID, should stay away; they don’t have anything to do with not having an ID!!! …Typical NAACP, uppity, hypocritical, double-standard, no-good, good-for-nothin, idiotic, liberal nonsense; it’s groups like this that have incited blacks and at the same time held them down ever since the black vote was first allowed by law!! In fact, all Civil Rights protections should be revoked. Blacks don’t need no liberal slave masters trying to trick them into thinking they’re inferior, and blacks don’t need no protection under the law; they can stand on their own two feet like us white people have had to!! We all know that these protests about voter ID laws are really about white liberals and uppity black people fooling regular black people into thinking they are inferior!! This one in Raleigh is about communist organizations like the NAACP riling blacks into being all uppity and militant!! Besides, if we don’t have voter ID laws, white liberals and blacks are going to work together to commit fraud,; mark my words, elections will be thrown and liberals will take over!! Our election process will never be honest again, and honest conservatives will never enjoy a free America again!! …Sing it with me, now, glory, glory hallelujah; glory, glory hallelujah…”

      • jefe68

        The level of right wing hyperventilating on this shows forum is telling. They are going to get back “their America” no matter what.

        • brettearle

          That’s not possible.

          Their version of America ended in 1776.

          • 1Brett1

            Um (clears throat), brettearle, come on, don’t you mean “1788,” when the Bill of Rights was ratified?! –No, wait, I’m sorry, the Bill of Rights comes from God…HE’s probably been shaking HIS omniscient head ever since!

          • brettearle

            I take your political humor gleefully and will, unfortunately, add a `downer’:

            Despite the Remonstrations of the Recalcitrant Right–and their Falwell and Bachmann overseers–I think that God may have actually given up on the country, when the Framers were actually sitting there in Independence Hall….like, say, when it became apparent to HIM that the Documents did not include, by direct implication, the rights of Africans; American-Indians; and, to some extent, Women.

          • 1Brett1

            Well, you know, “free will” and all…HE probably just wanted blacks and woman to be oppressed first so that we mortals could see the error of our ways…OR, that we liberals could finally see the wisdom of the conservative viewpoint and realize that we’ve allowed blacks and woman too much latitude, now, in the pendulum swing of things.

          • brettearle

            Excellent satire…

            You’re in my territory, thinking like me.

            Great Bretts think alike.

        • 1Brett1

          Oh, now, OPC is probably just upset because he’s started a 501(c)3 non-profit taxi service that’ll carry blacks and “the handicapped” to get their IDs, and he’s angered that the IRS hasn’t targeted his agency the way they have Tea Partiers; he’s an equal opportunity neocon, after all. He’s probably also upset that he can’t somehow work Benghazi into the voter ID issue (damn it!), was well.

          Of course, now that so many people are quitting their jobs and deciding to get Obamacare so they can live completely off the government, they should have lots of time on their hands during the day to go to the DMV and get their IDs! (this new meme, BTW, about people who “get Obamacare” being lazy/just wanting the government to take care of them and give them free stuff, is so absurd, even for the neocons).

          All joking aside, the neocon propaganda just gets more and more ridiculous…The voter ID issue affects all kinds of people, e.g., poor people, people with disabilities, people who live far away from a DMV, people who have lost their birth certificates, etc. Advocacy groups are going to advocate for whatever group they represent. A disabilities rights group, for example, is going to advocate for people with disabilities. The NAACP is going to advocate for people of color, and so on.

          Using N.C. as an example (as OPC has cited this rally), there are many poor African-American rural communities (of which there are many in N.C.) who will be adversely affected by this voter ID law; that’s just a fact, yet the neocons seize on this particular group as part of their meme that this somehow exemplifies liberals/militant black organizations perpetuating the idea that blacks as inferior/are shown some kind of special privilege…it’s nonsense.

          • jefe68

            Well he could just start using Benghazi as punctuation. The IRS is being used Benghazi as a tool for by the dictator Obama Benghazi….

      • OnPointComments

        Why do you think Rev. Barber wants everyone who joins his rally to have a photo ID?

        • pete18

          All of must bring a photo ID with you so you can prove what a racist burden it is to be asked for a photo ID when voting. All of our past noble efforts make us immune from any criticism for stupid and hypocritical things that we do now.

        • hennorama

          OPC– as you likely know, if one is detained or arrested by law enforcement, having an ID generally leads to a faster release.

          About 1000 arrests have been made during similar protests in NC.

          • pete18

            So one would guess the Rev assumes that it is quite feasible for the protesters to acquire an ID. Just like one might assume that to help insure the integrity of the vote it would not be a burden for voters to acquire an ID. Just like they do when they travel on planes, buy liquor or pick up checks, paperwork or documents at federal offices.

          • hennorama

            pete18 — thank you for your response.

            That’s quite a significant level of guesswork and assumption, sir.

            None of the activities you listed are involved in, or similar to, the voting process, making them rather odd comparisons. In the same way, voluntarily marching in protest and/or participating in civil disobedience are also not involved in, or similar to, the voting process, nor does one generally risk arrest when exercising one’s franchise.

            Thanks again for your response.

          • pete18

            No, but they still beg the question.

  • Potter

    See this just from today : Senator Elizabeth Warren

    To
    Obama: Stop Nominating So Many Corporatists

  • HonestDebate1

    Obamacare is a hacker’s dream.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/370646/medical-identity-theft-and-obamacare-jillian-kay-melchior

    Last week I linked to an article about Covered California hiring felons to help enrollees sign up, there were 31. One commenter insisted they weren’t even hired; no process necessary, help yourself. But that lacks credibility. Now it’s up to 43.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/369695/californias-obamacare-scandal-jillian-kay-melchior

  • JONBOSTON

    Another month and another disappointing jobs report and our clown prince of fools has nothing to offer other than pushing for extended unemployment insurance and increasing the minimum wage for those 1.6% of all workers who earn the minimum wage. As if extending unemployment insurance and increasing the pay for 17 year old hamburger flippers and those unfortunate few who have limited education and job skills will make one iota of difference in economic growth. The greatest anti-poverty program is a full time decent job and our serial liar and economic illiterate still refuses to sign off on Keystone pipeline which would immediately add thousands of decent paying “shovel ready” construction jobs. Instead he continues to promote a failed Obamacare program that the CBO says will lead to an aggregate job loss of 2.3million jobs in 10 years. And his sycophants (especially the laughable editorial page of the NYT) tout the benefits of added leisure time for those whose hours will be reduced because of Obamacare. Just tell that to the middle class worker struggling to get by. Or the african americans experiencing record high unemployment. Or the millennials who are stuck living home and searching for a decent job. Or the young women who now have free contraceptives but whose mothers (ages 40-55) are experiencing significant job loss in Friday’s jobs figures . I have limited sympathy for those fools who voted for this incompetent but are now faced with the daunting consequences of his failed policies.

    • pete18

      If only those nasty Koch brothers stopped interfering with Obama everything would be fine.

      • JONBOSTON

        The left likes to create corporate bogeymen like Halliburton and Koch Bros because they’re incapable of making reasoned serious and logical arguments. They wouldn’t know the Koch bros or anything about them if they were staying them in the face .Whenever they resort to this garbage , I think how utterly stupid they are.

  • OnPointComments

    I believe John Hinderaker has it exactly right in this article.

    BARACK OBAMA: THE GEORGE WALLACE OF FREE SPEECH
    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2014/02/barack-obama-the-george-wallace-of-free-speech.php

    Excerpt:
    The Supreme Court decided Brown vs. Board of Education in 1954, but prominent Democrats in the South refused to accept the court’s ruling…

    Something similar is happening with the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision, a landmark of First Amendment jurisprudence. Democrats refuse to accept the decision; Barack Obama denounced it in a State of the Union speech, and his example has been followed by many other Democrats–nearly all of whom, it should be added, misrepresent that case’s holding as they criticize it. Bitterly hostile to free speech when exercised by their political opponents, Democrats have done whatever they can to undermine Citizens United, just as they did decades ago with Brown vs. Board of Education.

    The I.R.S. scandal can best be seen in this light. The Democrats are using the levers of the executive branch, particularly the I.R.S., to deter Americans from exercising the First Amendment rights that were guaranteed them by the Supreme Court.

    In a 2010 speech, Lerner described the immense pressure that the I.R.S. was under to “fix” the “problem” of free speech by conservative groups:

    They want the IRS to fix the problem. The IRS laws are not set up to fix the problem: (c)(4)s can do straight political activity. They can go out and pay for an ad that says “Vote for Joe Blow.” That’s something they can do as long as their primary activity is their (c)(4) activity, which is social welfare.

    So everybody is screaming at us right now: “Fix it now before the election. Can’t you see how much these people are spending?”

    And what did the IRS do? It buckled to the pressure by using potentially criminal methods to suppress conservative free speech.

    • John Cedar

      Obama’s totalitarian dictator tactics go much further than that:

      Fox News reporter, James Rosen, was a criminal “co-conspirator”according to Obama administration.

      And how did they get the information to accuse him?

      Stephen Kim will get 14 months for “leaking” what everyone already knew.
      Obama leaked infinity-squared-X’s more classified information in the days after he single handedly killed Obama-bin-ladin.

      Bob Woodward was warned that he would “regret doing this” when he was critical of Obama’s sequester cuts.

      Obama’s heavy handed extortion, harassment leaking of private information and civil rights violations he directed the IRS to do to Conservative 501 c applicants, is not much connected to citizens united decision.

    • hennorama

      OPC — without reading the linked opinion, one can observe that at least Mr. Hinderaker didn’t “go Godwin” in his screed. All he did was compare an African-American President with a Southern Racist.

      I’m sure that was merely a coincidence.

      • OnPointComments

        I think he compared one Democrat with another Democrat.

  • jefe68

    Somewhere between 80 to 100,000 people from 32 states turned out to protest four years of drastic state Republican initiatives in Raleigh, North Carolina, on Saturday.

    http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2014/02/09/3268901/moral-monday-north-carolina-gop/

    • hennorama

      jefe68 — based on the images, I’m confident that there were more than 80 people there, but 100,000? Doubtful.

      Regardless, there was a large and diverse coalition gathered there to get some attention from the elected leadership.

      • jefe68

        That was the lede of the article. You or I do not know how many people were there.

    • HonestDebate1

      Elections have consequences.

      • jefe68

        They do, don’t they.
        Interesting how you right wingers use this forum day in and day out to protest the reelection of President Obama and do so by calling him a dictator, a tyrant and so on. When people on the left of your regressive right wing ideology protest the belligerence comes out.

        • HonestDebate1

          Republicans in NC got what they voted for. The Democrats who voted for Obama got sold a bill of goods.

          • jefe68

            Yep, they voted for regressive right wing ideology. Yet more belligerence and intolerance from the right.

          • HonestDebate1

            Call it what you want, I got what I voted for. Obama voters, not so much.

          • jefe68

            You voted for oppressive right wing extremist. I guess you like having poverty go up in your state and children go hungry. Yep, that’s what you voted for.

          • HonestDebate1

            I didn’t vote for children to go hungry, that’s just gravy.

          • jefe68

            Trying to be funny now. Sure does make you look like the behind of a donkey.

          • Steve__T

            That’s Sick and disgusting.

  • Ray in VT

    Missouri’s Michael Sam, SEC Defensive Player of the Year and an All American, will end up being the first openly gay NFL player, assuming that he does get drafted, which he is projected to, based upon the scouting reports. He sounds like a thoughtful young man, based upon his ESPN interview.

    • TFRX

      I heard that he came out to his team and coaches before the last season.

      Strictly from a “job interview” standpoint, I consider it a good idea in the “no surprises” manner. Some people are asking “is this a good thing to do before the draft; I’m figuring it’s a lot better to do it now than after.

      • Ray in VT

        I think that it is interesting that the team knew all season and that it didn’t really come out on a larger scale until now. Reportedly the reaction of his teammates was along the lines of “yeah, we know”.

        I think that it could hurt his draft status, potentially, but it is probably better to get it out there. He said that the scouts knew, so it doesn’t look like it would have remained a secret until the draft. Some people will probably have a problem with him for who he is, but some current NFLers have issued statements of support.

        • TFRX

          At least he’s in the line of work where “draft status != career”.

          Think of every other guy (like Tom Brady) with an axe to grind to show those teams who passed on him they made a mistake. Think of Peyton Manning telling the Colts’ coaching staff “You can take me with the #1 draft pick or watch me beat your ass on the field for fifteen years.”

          • Ray in VT

            Drafting can be so hit or miss. Remember, there was a real debate regarding Manning vs. Leaf for #1, and a guy like James Harrison never got drafted. He sounds a bit undersized for an NFL DE, but it depends upon not only his skills and the system that he’s in. Perhaps he could move to linebacker. It’s all too tough to judge, even for the guys who do this for a living. I like Todd McShay on ESPN. I wonder how he rates Sam.

  • Pastor Bruce

    With all of the press coverage received by Bible-thumping fundamentalist church leaders as the self-proclaimed “moral majority” of the religious “right,” isn’t it about time that some attention is accorded to the growing number of Christians who consider themselves more inclusive, accepting, and affirming of others and their beliefs … indeed, more like the Christ that they follow?

    That’s why I wrote The Gospel According to Facebook: Social Media and the Good News.

    Not since the Protestant Reformation have the entrenched forces of organized religion been challenged by such a dynamic move of God’s Spirit and people. Voices historically unheard and unrecognized now relay their messages instantly across time and space, reaching and rallying an audience that’s both receptive and responsive.

    The good news shared through Facebook and other social media echoes the essential message of Jesus about grace, love, compassion, and social justice.

    Consideration of my new book by CNN will be greatly appreciated—not only by me, but by all progressive Christians who seek to see their Lord’s teachings depicted graciously, rather than judgmentally.

    Sincerely,

    (Rev.) Bruce H. Joffe, Ph.D.

  • hennorama

    Posted today by CBO Director Doug Elmendorf, in part:

    “Last week CBO released its latest report on the outlook for the budget and the economy; we also released a companionreport that takes a closer look at the slow recovery of the labor market. The budget and economic projections presented in those reports include an updated analysis of the effects of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on labor markets, which we explain in Appendix C of the report on the outlook. That analysis has attracted a great deal of attention and raised several questions. In this blog posting, we try to answer a few of the questions we have been asked.

    Q: Will 2.5 Million People Lose Their Jobs in 2024 Because of the ACA?

    A: No, we would not describe our estimates in that way.

    We wrote in the report: “CBO estimates that the ACA will reduce the total number of hours worked, on net, by about 1.5 percent to 2.0 percent during the period from 2017 to 2024, almost entirely because workers will choose to supply less labor.” The reason for the reduction in the supply of labor is that the provisions of the ACA reduce the incentive to work for certain subsets of the population.”

    See:
    http://www.cbo.gov/publication/45096

    • pete18

      “Now the new delay arrives amid a furious debate about jobs after a damning Congressional Budget Office report last week, only this time
      with liberals celebrating ObamaCare’s supposed benefits to the job market.

      Well, which is it? Either ObamaCare
      is ushering in a worker’s paradise, in which case by the White House’s own logic exempting businesses from its ministrations is harming employees. Or else the mandate really is leading business to cut back on
      hiring, hours and shifting workers to part-time as the evidence in the real economy suggests.”

      http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303650204579375310934336066?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEADTop&mg=reno64-wsj&url=http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303650204579375310934336066.html%3Fmod%3DWSJ_Opinion_LEADTop&fpid=2,7,121,122,201,401,641,1009

    • OnPointComments

      “You won’t be able to keep your old health plan or your doctor. The cost of health insurance for 80% of people will be higher, and the deductibles will be much higher. Don’t think that because we’ve passed the law you can now find out what is in it (laughter ensues as President Obama winks at Nancy Pelosi), because I’ll make changes to the law, all by my lonesome, if I think it is politically advantageous to do so. Obamacare will give some people the option to work less, to earn less, and have those 53% of taxpayers of whom Mitt Romney spoke to pick up the tab. I am fundamentally changing America.”

      I wonder how the election would have turned out if the truth had been told.

      • hennorama

        OPC — if you believe that your “qoute” is “the truth,” you’re seriously misinformed. The first sentence alone is completely false.

        • OnPointComments

          The pledges the President made to the American people were

          “If you like the plan you have, you can keep it. If you like the doctor you have, you can keep your doctor, too. The only change you’ll see are falling costs as our reforms take hold.”

          “I know that there are millions of Americans who are content with their health care coverage — they like their plan and, most importantly, they value their relationship with their doctor. They trust you. And that means that no matter how we reform health care, we will keep this promise to the American people: If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor, period. If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what.”

          He promised that if someone is satisfied with their plan and doctor, nothing will change for them. The only change you’ll see are falling costs as our reforms take hold. He didn’t say you can keep your plan and doctor provided that the plan doesn’t change, or if you’re willing to pay more. He said the opposite: You can keep your plan and doctor. PERIOD. No one will take it away, NO MATTER WHAT.

          • hennorama

            OPC — thank you for your response.

            Nothing in it proves your first sentence.

          • pete18

            Yes, because the quotes from the president that you listed weren’t pledges that he made to the american people, he was talking to himself. Man you Republicans are so clueless.

          • OnPointComments

            I’m finding it mildly amusing to see those who passed Obamacare, and forced it down the throats of the American people when they knew the majority didn’t want it, now deserting Obamacare and its namesake like rats on a sinking ship.

          • pete18

            I’d find it amusing too, except for the fact that the ship is taking everyone down with it. We’re all going to be swimming with the rats.

          • hennorama

            pete18 — if you were trying to communicate to me, you failed completely.

          • pete18

            I wasn’t talking to you. I was letting OPC know how crazy it is to think that using actual quotes from President Obama of promises that he made to the American people, over and over and over again, about a policy he was trying to sell them on, would be proof of a pledge to the American people. It’s absurd, don’t you agree?

          • hennorama

            pete18 — I agree that it’s absurd to reply to me in an effort to communicate to someone else.

          • pete18

            You’re fixated on the wrong absurditiy.

          • hennorama

            pete18 — thank you for confirming that replying to me in an effort to communicate to someone else is absurd.

            The fixations you detect are not on my part.

          • pete18

            As long as we’re trading thank you’s, thanks for confirming that you deem an imagined forum etiquette to be more important than addressing false promises about policy that affects everyone from the President of the United States.

          • OnPointComments

            Thousands of families across the country have already gotten the bad news.

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6KUWVF9KtoA

    • HonestDebate1

      “Will 2.5 Million People Lose Their Jobs in 2024 Because of the ACA?”

      Who made that claim?

  • pete18

    From a DEFENDER of Obamacare:

    “It’s getting difficult and slinking toward impossible to defend the Affordable Care Act. The latest blow to Democratic candidates, liberal activists, and naïve columnists like me came Monday from the White House, which announced yet another delay in the Obamacare implementation.

    For the second time in a year, certain businesses were given more time before being forced to offer health insurance to most of their full-time workers. Employers with 50 to 99 workers were given until 2016 to comply, two years longer than required by law. During a yearlong grace period, larger companies will be required to insure fewer employees than spelled out in the law.

    Not coincidentally, the delays punt implementation beyond congressional elections in November, which raises the first problem with defending Obamacare: The White House has politicized its signature policy.

    The win-at-all-cost mentality helped create a culture in which a
    partisan-line vote was deemed sufficient for passing transcendent legislation. It spurred advisers to develop a dishonest talking point—”If you like your health plan, you’ll be able to keep your health plan.” And political expediency led Obama to repeat the line, over and over and over again, when he knew, or should have known, it was false.

    Defending the ACA became painfully harder when online insurance markets were launched from a multibillion-dollar website that didn’t work, when autopsies on
    the administration’s actions revealed an epidemic of incompetence that began in the Oval Office and ended with no accountability.

    Then officials started fudging numbers and massaging facts to promote implementation, nothing illegal or even extraordinary for this era of spin. But they did more damage to the credibility of ACA advocates.

    Finally,there are the ACA rule changes—27 major adjustments, according to Fox News, without congressional approval. J. Mark Iwry, deputy assistant Treasury secretary for health policy, said the administration has broad “authority to grant transition relief” under a section of the Internal Revenue Code that directs the Treasury secretary to “prescribe all needful rules and regulations for the enforcement” of tax obligations, according to The New York Times.

    Yes, Obamacare is a tax.

    Advocates for a strong executive branch, including me, have given the White House a pass on its rule-making authority, because implementing such a complicated law requires flexibility. But the law may be getting stretched to the point of breaking. Think of the ACA as a game of Jenga: Adjust one piece and the rest are affected; adjust too many and it
    falls.”

    http://www.nationaljournal.com/white-house/why-i-m-getting-sick-of-defending-obamacare-20140211

  • OnPointComments

    “Hear ye, hear ye, humble subjects of His Most Benevolent Majesty, King Barack I, Destroyer of Insurance and Slayer of Jobs! By royal decree, it has been proclaimed that the employer mandates of His Majesty’s most glorious achievement – which some of you filthy peasants have been heard sniggering is “the settled law of the land,” in the same tone of voice you might use to describe the S.S. Titanic as “unsinkable” – shall once again be delayed. Let all in the land accept the new dates as chiseled in the hard granite of absolute law… until such time as His Majesty deems it necessary to change them again, of course. His Majesty’s subjects are ordered to rejoice and give copious thanks for their beloved Sun King’s transcendent wisdom and heartfelt compassion! Huzzah!”
    http://www.humanevents.com/2014/02/11/obamacare-employer-mandate-once-again-altered-by-royal-decree/

  • OnPointComments

    Kathleen Sebelius – November 6, 2013 testimony to Congress about possible ACA delays:

    SEBELIUS: Now, some have asked, why not just delay implementation of the new law until all of the problems are fixed? And there’s a pretty straightforward answer: Delaying the Affordable Care Act wouldn’t delay people’s cancer or diabetes or Parkinson’s. Didn’t delay the need for mental health services or cholesterol screenings or prenatal care. Delaying the Affordable Care Act doesn’t delay the foreclosure notices for families forced into bankruptcy by unpayable medical bills. It doesn’t delay the higher costs all of us pay when uninsured Americans are left with no choice but to rely on emergency rooms for care.

    So for millions of Americans, delay is not an option. People’s lives depend on this. Too many hard-working people have been waiting for too long for the ability to obtain affordable health insurance.

    We want to save families from going bankrupt. We want to save the lives of more of our friends and neighbors by allowing them to detect medical issues early. We want to keep prices down. Delay is not an option.

    Apparently Katy forgot that there’s something that trumps cancer, diabetes, Parkinson’s, mental health services, cholesterol screenings, and prenatal care: elections.

  • OnPointComments

    If they make electricity too expensive to buy, how am I going to keep my house warm in the midst of all this global warming?

    EPA ‘CLEAN COAL’ RULE WOULD INCREASE POWER PRICES BY 70 OR 80 PERCENT

    An Obama administration official has said that the new clean coal rules could increase electricity prices by as much as 80 percent.

    Dr. Julio Friedmann, the deputy assistant secretary for clean coal at the Department of Energy, told House lawmakers that the first generation of carbon capture and storage technology would increase wholesale electricity prices by “70 or 80 percent.”

    Friedmann added that these high costs could not be made up by power companies through increased production volumes.

    • OnPointComments

      It seems to me that we could significantly reduce CO2, perhaps by as much as half, if everyone who feels strongly about reducing CO2 would commit immediately to a life that is entirely free of fossil fuels.

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