This blog is mainly about the spectacular train wreck at The Sacramento Bee and its parent company, the McClatchy Company. But I also post about current events, the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, politics, anything else that grabs my attention. Take a look around this blog, hope you enjoy it.
Sunday, November 22, 2009
Sunday November 22 -- Got news or an update?
If you have news or an update, leave it in comments. . . .
Harry Reid Plays Slave Card As Dems Vote to Move Nationalized Health Care Forward(GatewayPundit)
Harry Reid also said it was FREE!
It’s fully paid for!
The vote tonight was 60-39.
It was a straight party line vote. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins voted with the GOP tonight.
The AP rejoiced:
Invoking the memory of Edward M. Kennedy, Democrats united Saturday night to push historic health care legislation past a key Senate hurdle over the opposition of Republicans eager to inflict a punishing defeat on President Barack Obama. There was not a vote to spare.
The 60-39 vote cleared the way for a bruising, full-scale debate beginning after Thanksgiving on the legislation, which is designed to extend coverage to roughly 31 million who lack it, crack down on insurance company practices that deny or dilute benefits and curtail the growth of spending on medical care nationally.
The spectator galleries were full for the unusual Saturday night showdown, and applause broke out briefly when the vote was announced. In a measure of the significance of the moment, senators sat quietly in their seats, standing only when they were called upon to vote.
In the final minutes of a daylong session, Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., accused Republicans of trying to stifle a historic debate the nation needed.
“Imagine if, instead of debating whether to abolish slavery, instead of debating whether giving women and minorities the right to vote, those who disagreed had muted discussion and killed any vote,” he said.
The Republican leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, said the vote was anything but procedural — casting it as a referendum on the bill itself, which he said would raise taxes, cut Medicare and create a “massive and unsustainable debt.”
For the record… The democrats were the pro-slavery party 150 years ago, too.
Liberal Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) Says Government is Too Big– But Votes to Make it Bigger Anyway (Video)GatewayPundit
We have a winner!
Today’s chutzpah award goes to the distinguished liberal from Arkansas—Senator Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) told her senate colleagues tonight before the nationalized health care vote:
“We should be stopping the growth of government not expanding it more.“
Of course, she then proceeded to vote with her fellow democrats on their nationalized health care bill.
Here’s the video:(At the 3:40 mark)
That took gall.
Did anyone else catch this? (Harry Reid CSPAN2)
Just now on C-SPAN, Harry Reid quotes communist Andrei Sakharov in closing statement of Senate debate on socialist health care.
OK granted, Sakharov was not a ranting Leninist but why wouldn't Harry quote a founder or an American patriot to make his simplistic, sophomoric point.
O wait, Harry IS a ranting Leninist...
Reid bill: 16M uninsured U.S. citizens pay a penalty tax. 8M uninsured illegal aliens do not.
Under Leader Reid’s amendment, in the year 2019 about 16 million U.S. citizens would be uninsured and be forced to pay a penalty tax of almost $800 per year.
About eight million illegal aliens would be uninsured and would owe no penalty tax.
Both groups would get their health care through a combination of out-of-pocket spending and use of uncompensated care in emergency rooms and free health clinics.
(Democrat) House moves to protect doctors from Medicare cuts, add $200 billion plus to the deficit
The Democratic-controlled House voted Thursday to add more than $200 billion to the deficit to prevent steep Medicare payment cuts to doctors, a move Republicans denounced as a political payoff.
The measure, approved on a near party-line vote of 243 to 183, is a top priority for the American Medical Association.
The GOP contended that Democrats supported the bill to thank the doctors group for backing President Barack Obama's health care overhaul.
"This is nothing more than a repayment to the American Medical Association for endorsing the larger health care bill that was on the floor several weeks ago," said Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas.
"This is not a question of payoff to anybody," retorted Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md. "It's the right thing to do."
Characterizing the measure as "an important step forward," the president lauded the legislators "for taking action to protect the care and physician choice that Medicare beneficiaries and TRICARE (military) patients have earned" in a statement issued by the White House late Thursday.
Sarah Palin asks: 'Rationed care' already? (guidelines scale back screenings for cervical cancer)
Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin early Friday morning greeted news that renewed guidelines scale back screenings for cervical cancer by asking if bureaucratic panels were already rationing care.
“The recommendation from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists comes on the heels of another recommendation to limit breast cancer screenings with mammograms.
There are many questions unanswered for me, but one which immediately comes to mind is whether costs have anything to do with these recommendations,” Palin wrote in a post on her Facebook page.
“The current health care debate elicits great concern because of its introduction of socialized medicine in America and the inevitable rationed care,” she continued.
“We need to carefully watch this debate as it coincides with Capitol Hill’s debate and determine whether we are witnessing the early stages of that rationed care before the Senate bill is rushed through as well.”
Palin first waded into health care debate in August, announcing that Democrats would create so-called death panels to decide end-of-life care decisions for the elderly.
Evil. Dem’s Nationalized Health Care Plan Raises Taxes on Special Needs Children (GatewayPundit)
Pure evil. As if the parents of special needs children don’t suffer enough.
Dems will increase taxes on the parents of special needs children in their nationalized health care bill.
LifeSite News reported: The statistics are scary when it comes to the percentage of unborn children born with special needs who become victims of abortion.
One fiscal conservative group says the task for parents raising such children is made more difficult by extra taxes found in Harry Reid’s new Senate health care bill.
The measure has already been condemned by pro-life groups and the Catholic bishops for its abortion funding and this latest analysis won’t make it any more endearing.
Ryan Ellis of Americans for Tax Reform notes that the bill contains 18 separate tax increases — one of them targeting parents of disabled children.
“One of them caps the amount that can be deferred in Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) at $2500 per year (a similar provision was included in the Pelosi-Obama health bill),” Ellis notes.
“There is currently no limit to how much can be saved, though all monies must be used by the end of the year. Employers may put a cap in place for their employees, but this would put a cap in federal tax law for the first time.
According to the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), 30 million American families use an FSA,” he explained.
Hacked E-Mails Appear to Indicate Global Warming Fraud (Patterico)
Controversy has exploded onto the Internet after a major global-warming advocacy center in the UK had its e-mail system hacked and the data published on line.
The director of the University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit confirmed that the e-mails are genuine — and Australian publication Investigate and the Australian Herald-Sun report that those e-mails expose a conspiracy to hide detrimental information from the public that argues against global warming . . .
Via Instapundit, there is a summary of the relevant e-mails. The author cautions:
General reaction seems to be that the CRUgate emails are genuine, but with the caveat that there could be some less reliable stuff slipped in.
I don’t feel scientifically qualified to have a firm opinion about man-made global warming, but you can consider me a cautious “man-made global warming skepticism skeptic.” (That’s not a typo.)
I have seen bad arguments on both sides of the debate — and I think reducing pollution and greenhouse gases is a worthy goal regardless of the truth of claims regarding man-made global warming.
But if the advocates of man-made global warming wanted to undermine their credibility, this would be one of the best ways to do it.
P.S. I don’t support hacking anyone’s e-mail account. But the leftists and the press didn’t seem to care much when it happened to Sarah Palin.
Let’s see whether news stories are more concerned with how this became public, as opposed to the information itself.
Why do I have a feeling the hacking is going to be the only story?
Obama Union Rules: A federal agency rips up 75 years of labor policy (Wall Street Journal)
The National Mediation Board, which oversees labor relations in the air and rail industry, this month moved to overturn 75 years of labor policy.
The board plans to stack the deck for organized labor in union elections. Under a proposed rule, unions would no longer have to get the approval of a majority of airline workers to achieve certification.
Not even close.
Instead, a union could win just by getting a majority of the employees who vote.
Thus, if only 1,000 of 10,000 flight attendants vote in a union election, and 501 vote for certification, the other 9,499 become unionized.
This radical break with precedent is the handiwork of President Obama's appointees to the three-member board: Harry Hoglander, once president of a pilots union, and Linda Puchala, former president of the Association of Flight Attendants.
The board got a request to adopt the jerry-rigged voting standard from the AFL-CIO in September.
Without a hearing or invitation for preliminary views, the Obama duo drafted the AFL-CIO demand and published it in the Federal Register.
It's now subject to a 60-day comment period, after which Ms. Puchala and Mr. Hoglander will no doubt vote to inflict it on all the nation's airline and rail carriers.
Since 1934, every National Mediation Board—even those with Democratic majorities—has upheld the current rule on grounds that companies governed by the Railway Labor Act are vital to the U.S. economy.
The existing rules were designed to reduce strikes by ensuring that a majority of airline and rail employees support union representation.
In their rule change, Mr. Hoglander and Ms. Puchala brush aside the many historical and legal barriers to their change, arguing that under "broad statutory authority" they can do what they want.
Report: ACORN mismanaged grant money [Gasp! Shock!......]
A report Friday by the Justice Department's independent inspector general revealed that ACORN won approval for nearly $200,000 in Justice grants since 2002 and mismanaged some of the money.
The grant tally, though only from a single department, provides a glimpse of the taxpayer dollars the embattled liberal activist group is fighting to reclaim after Congress canceled its federal funding.
The report showed the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) or affiliated groups were authorized to collect five grant awards from the Justice Department since 2002, including two in New York City: a $138,130 grant in fiscal 2005 to provide youth leadership training and set up an "ACORN Youth Union" and $20,000 in fiscal 2009 to help run a Crime Stoppers Program.
"It's ironic that the Justice Department provided ACORN affiliates with funding to help prevent crime when many of ACORN's own employees have come under criticism for possible criminal conduct," said Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas, ranking Republican on the Judiciary Committee, who requested the grant review.
He said he was not surprised the review found that ACORN - a group under intense scrutiny since hidden-camera videos showed its workers advising a woman posing as a prostitute how to cheat on taxes and loan applications - failed to adhere to proper procedures and adequately account for grant funds.
"Because the Justice Department's review found only small amounts of taxpayer dollars going to ACORN, it is imperative that the Inspectors General from [other] federal agencies that have provided millions to ACORN undertake the same kind of review," he said.
"The Justice Department IG's report may prove to be just the tip of an iceberg-sized fraud."
ACORN did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Thanks for Paying Attention Big Journalism (biggovernment.com)
In response to the Columbia Journalism Review’s accusing me of “blackmailing” the Attorney General of the United States, I must take notice that the mainstream media as a journalistic establishment IS paying attention to the ongoing ACORN scandal.
Good. I thought so. (snip)
There will be consequences if there isn’t an investigation into ACORN. The videos will be shown and at a particular moment.
AP claims ‘FAIR USE!’ over the scanning [ Not Buying ] of Sarah Palin’s book (TechBlorg)
Well, it would seem that the AP is all for fair use … when it applies to them...
No matter how you slice it, the AP copied Palin's book (without permission), distributed it (without permission) and now stands up to say it was all done under fair use...
The Associated Press has essentially claimed there is no such thing as ‘fair use’ when it comes to quoting its articles or reprinting its headlines, but when the news organization scans an entire book, then fair use does indeed exist.
Bloggers and news aggregation sites such as Google News have felt the wrath of the Associated Press (AP) for some time now for quoting headlines from the news agency or any portion of its articles.
The AP has gone so far as to suggest it would start billing bloggers per quoted word for anything pulled from its articles.
While both headlines and small quotes from articles are well protected under the fair use doctrine in copyright law, the AP has essentially ignored the concept with its actions.
Well, it would seem that the AP is all for fair use … when it applies to them.
President Obama seeks $500,000 for ads to rebut Palin (St Louis Examiner)
Another e-mail from email@example.com hit my inbox yesterday. The subject: Sarah Palin.
"Right now, Sarah Palin is on a highly publicized, nationwide book tour, attacking President Obama and his plan for health reform at every turn."
The mail goes on to say "It's dangerous. Remember, this is the person who coined the term "Death Panels" -- and opened the flood gates for months of false attacks by special interests and partisan extremists."
"Whatever lie comes next will be widely covered by the media, then constantly echoed by right-wing attack groups and others who are trying to defeat reform."
"So we're setting a big goal:
$500,000 in the next week to help push back against Sarah Palin and her allies.....We need to be prepared.
And we're counting on you help. Can you chip in $5?"
So it has come to this: a sitting president soliciting donations for counter-attack ads on a former VP nominee hockey mom that most of the mainstream media rediculed in the last election.
If her claims are so outrageous, why bother spending the money to respond?
Maybe because a lot of people are listening to her, and many of them might just agree with what she is saying.
Bill Moyers to Leave Weekly Television (WHO on PBS? Along with Oprah, leftist TV takes a major hit)NY Times
The PBS mainstay Bill Moyers, left, said he was retiring from weekly television and would end his Friday night public affairs show, “Bill Moyers Journal,” on April 30, 2010.
That date will also be the last for “Now on PBS,” which has been canceled. Mr. Moyers said he had been planning for some time to retire the program on Dec. 25 but was asked by PBS to raise the funds to continue through April, which he did.
“I am 75 years old,” he said of the decision to end the series, which began in April 2007. The program has recently been having a “good run of it,” he added in a telephone interview on Friday, “so I feel it’s time.” He said he was not quitting television work although he had no new projects planned.
An Unsteady Future for(Network TV) Broadcast (The New York Times)
Oprah Winfrey is fleeing broadcast TV for cable. NBC, once arguably the biggest cultural tastemaker in the United States, is being shopped to Comcast, the country’s largest cable company.
Have we reached a tipping point that suggests a remarkable decline in the fortunes of broadcast television in America?
Analysts and executives agree that the economic model of broadcast — which relies more heavily on advertising than cable — is fractured. What they are wondering now is if it is irreparably broken.
The business model of the big three networks — which became four when Fox began prime-time programming in 1987 — has relied on a simple formula: spend millions on original programming that will attract advertiser dollars and later live on as lucrative reruns in syndication.
In the 1952-53 television season, more than 30% of American households that owned TV's tuned in to NBC during prime time.
In the 07-8 season, that figure was 5.2 percent.
NBC made perhaps the biggest bet of all — moving Jay Leno to prime time each night at 10, saving the millions it would have cost to develop a scripted show in that time spot. The Leno move has been the subject of scrutiny by the media, because Mr. Leno’s ratings have lately fallen on several nights well below even the modest guarantees NBC made to advertisers.
Nicholas Heymann, an analyst at Sterne, Agee & Leach who follows G.E., said that the consistently ineffective efforts to rebuild the prime-time portion of the NBC network might have led G.E. to thinking it was time to exit the entertainment business. And this one decision may have pushed G.E. over the edge, he said.
“I think the Leno move was the last straw,” Heymann said, “the last roll of the dice for G.E.”
Can the Postal Service be Saved?
With Losses Mounting, Postal Service Seeks Autonomy, Pushes to Cut Saturday Service; Rep. Danny Davis Calls for a Bailout
It's been an ugly few years for the United States Postal Service.
The quasi-government agency announced this week that it lost $3.8 billion in the most recent fiscal year, which ended September 30th.
It also delivered less mail - 26 billion fewer pieces less, a nearly 13 percent drop from the previous year.
The bad news follows losses totaling $7.8 billion in 2007 and 2008.
Becoming Venezuela– Team Obama Announces “Marxist” Purge of GOP Civil Servants
The Obama Administration’s Office of Personnel Management (OPM) intends to purge the federal government of Republican civil servants to purify the federal bureaucracy.
The Obama administration intends to purge Republicans from the civil service retroactive to five years ago starting in the year 2010.
At RedState.com: “Via Instapundit comes word that the federal government’s Office of Personnel Management (OPM) intends to purge the federal government of Republican civil servants all in the name of purifying the federal bureaucracy.”
Here’s the relevant paragraph from here John Berry, who is the director of the Office of Personnel Management:
“Beginning January 1, 2010, agencies must seek prior approval from OPM before they can appoint a current or recent political appointee to a competitive or non-political excepted service position at any level under the provisions of title 5, United States Code.
OPM will review these proposed appointments to ensure they comply with merit system principles and applicable civil service laws.
I have delegated decision making authority over these matters to career Senior Executives at OPM to avoid any hint of political influence.”
“The memorandum goes on to apply this change to civil servants who were political appointees in the last five years, in effect freezing these employees out of other positions, denying them promotions, and forcing them out of their jobs.”
This is what Marxists do. This is a purge. This is typical of Marxist regimes, totalitarian regimes.
Herman Van Rompuy: Europe's first president to push for 'Euro tax' (The Telegraph)
Europe's first president, is to join forces with the European Commission to push for sweeping new tax raising powers for Brussels.
Within days of taking office in January, the former Belgian prime minister will put his weight behind controversial proposals already floated by the commission's head, José Manuel Barroso, for a new "Euro tax".
It would result in a stream of income direct to Brussels coffers, funding budgets that critics say are already rife with waste and overspending.
Mr Van Rompuy, 62, who was appointed to the newly-created £320,000-a-year post at last week's special EU summit, set out his stall on direct Euro-taxes during a private speech at a recent meeting of the Bilderberg group of top politicians, bankers and businessmen.
The group officially meets in secret, but when selected details of his remarks leaked out, his office was forced to issue a public statement on his behalf.
"The financing of the welfare state, irrespective of the social reform we implement, will require new resources," he said.
"The possibility of financial levies at European level needs to be seriously reviewed."
Hacked climate emails: conspiracy or tempest in a teapot? (The Christian Science Monitor)
These people act in concert to diminish, reject, and otherwise denigrate findings with which they do not agree — and they are able to do so because of their “establishment” positions.
This is the preservation of “group think” at its most serious level….
The group represented by the bulk of these emails does indeed have a message to defend.
Those of us who see problems with that message are aware of how the data are manufactured and interpreted to support that message — and worse, how these establishment scientists act as gatekeepers for the “consensus” reports to suppress alternative findings.
The “Algore Scientific Method”
1) Figure out the best way to make a lot of money & scam the public.
2) Come up with outlandish statements that are nearly impossible to prove.
3) Get your lapdogs in the media to parrot each statement. Get your cronies in entertainment to make movies about it.
4) Declare that the debate is over.
5) Destroy civilization, and after plunging the western world into poverty, ensure that you and your cronies are at the top of the “food chain.”
I think that pretty well describes it...
Germany, Hey Holder, You Can't Use Our Evidence For Death Penalty in Upcoming KSM & Fellow Terrorists Trial
Via Jammie Wearing Fool
Justice Ministry spokeswoman Katharina Jahntz on Saturday confirmed a report in Der Spiegel that a German observer would attend the trial to ensure that no evidence provided by Germany would be used to apply the death penalty.
This trial is indeed going to be a circus thanks to AG Holder living in a 9/10 fog.
CRU Files Betray Climate Alarmists' Funding Hypocrisy (follow the AGW money)American Thinker
It seems that while scientists who accept funding from oil companies are branded as bought-and-paid-for shills, those financed by renewable energy interests remain unchallenged authorities in their fields. Words can’t adequately express my astonishment.
it’s actually the second document (potential-funding.doc) that tells the more compelling tale. In addition to four government sources of potential CRU funding, it lists an equal number of “energy agencies” they might put the bite on.
Three -- the Carbon Trust, the Northern Energy Initiative and the Energy Saving Trust -- are UK-based consultancy and funding specialists promoting “new energy” technologies with the goal of reducing carbon dioxide emissions.
The fourth -- Renewables North West -- is an American company promoting the expansion of solar, wind and geothermal energy in the Pacific Northwest.
Needless to say, all four of these CRU “potential funding sources” have an undeniably intrinsic financial interest in the promotion of the carbochondriacal reports CRU is ready, willing, and able to dish out ostensibly on-demand.
And equally obvious is that Jones is all too aware that a renewable energy-funded CRU will remain the world’s premiere authority on the subject of anthropogenic global warming (AGW) despite any appearance of conflict.
And yet, no such latitude has ever been extended to scientists in the skeptical camp
Lesbian U.S. soldier wins bid for asylum (Canwest News Service Canada)
OTTAWA — A lesbian soldier who deserted the U.S. army won a key court victory Friday when a judge ordered the refugee board to reconsider her failed asylum claim and take into account compelling evidence that she was persecuted and that her sexual orientation could mean stiffer punishment for going AWOL.
Federal Court Justice Yves de Montigny's order for the board to consider a gay U.S. soldier as a credible refugee candidate is believed to be a first, said a spokesman for the U.S. military.
"I have never heard of anybody attempting to do that before," said army spokesman Lt.-Col. Christopher Garver.
What’s happening to our country, Mexicans breaking in,
lesbians breaking out. What’s next?
Hmmm, MS 13 and the Mexican Mafia or Dykes on Bikes and Rachel ManCow? I think I would opt for the Mexican invasion. You can shoot back at them and there is nothing on earth quite so insidious and conspiratorial as the ladies with crew cuts and chained wallets.
Well, if you are a smoker or smart enough to know that something you may enjoy will be next on the list, you should know that the Senate Judiciary Committee just approved Bill S1147 "PACT ACT" which will make it a felony crime to buy, order, sell or ship any tobacco related product via the internet, phone or catalog through any mail services.
Just one more step in totalitarian control over every single facet of our lives. Criminalizing legal personal behavior....and they wonder why we call them Marxists.
Damn, all kinds of news you'll never read in a McClatchy Propaganda rag today!
First up, Rep Patrick Kennedy(C) Barred from Communion! Looks like Teddie isn't flying high cover for the family retard.
In other developments Nice Deb has a laugher suitable for framing at the expense of, none other than, veteran moonbat and esteemed marxist Andrea Mitchell as she is arrested while vandalizing a bookstore in the name of the proletariat.
Mz Comrade Mitchell's battle weary mug is captured in 8 X 10 glossy glory as she is unceremoniously carted from the presence of a glowing Sarah Palin who is obviously doing everything within her powers to contain her laughter.
Get this photo while you can. The photographer is sure to protect this one.
Climate Change Bombshell: Dr. Tim Ball on the hacked CRU emails (you tube)
Video by Retired Dr. Tim Bell Historical Climatologist explaining why this is such a big deal.
"This isn't a smoking gun, this is a whole bunch of smoking machine guns"
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