Friday, January 29, 2010

President Obama Silences Republican Talking Points

Today, President Obama attended the Republican Retreat where, as promised, he took an hour long Q&A session from right-wing elected officials. As the day arrived, Republicans gathered family members, staff members and went out of their way to bring national media outlets to the event --salivating at the thought of embarrassing our president before a live audience.

As you will see below, that was a mistake.

Watch as President Obama walks into the Republican Retreat and not only talks tough to Republicans, but also does an amazing job at utterly refuting every single Republican talking point used today.

We The Corporations? I Don't Think So.

Repost of Babarba Streisand's Column from Huffington Post

I felt like I was in suspended animation as I read the Supreme Court decision which essentially enables a corporate coup d'├ętat of America's Democracy.

Our country's Founding Fathers never intended for monarchs or the business establishment to rule our nation. No, the Founders of our country began the Constitution with the words, We the People of the United States...

That sentiment was again expressed when President Lincoln in his famous Gettysburg Address said it simply but powerfully, that our government was of the people, by the people and for the people.

Corporations are not people nor are they individual citizens. They are chartered by states to conduct commerce. And while I certainly don't pretend to be a constitutional scholar, I have been reading a lot about this and thankfully, many brilliant minds do agree with me.

While I have always been a longtime believer, defender and supporter of the First Amendment guarantee of the right to free speech, the signers of our Constitution certainly did not intend for that to mean that corporations should be able to spend unlimited amounts of money in order to influence the outcome of our elections. Justice Stevens said it perfectly in his dissent of this recent court decision:

"Corporations are not actually members of [our society]. They cannot vote or run for office. Because they may be managed and controlled by nonresidents, their interests may conflict in fundamental respects with the interests of eligible voters. The financial resources, legal structure, and instrumental orientation of corporations raise legitimate concerns about their role in the electoral process. Our lawmakers have a compelling constitutional basis, if not also a democratic duty, to take measures designed to guard against the potentially deleterious effects of corporate spending in local and national races."

The conversations regarding what to do are just beginning. Many efforts to undo and modify the damage of this 5-4 ruling will probably take shape. There will be attempts to pass a campaign finance reform bill that has merit and will survive the Supreme Court test. Hopefully, Congress will mobilize and pass legislation that prohibits the political contributions of any company that receives government funds and I hope they will also pass legislation that requires companies to get approval from their shareholders before a corporation can spend money on electoral activity.

And maybe, with deep grassroots popular support, organizations will even push for a constitutional amendment to undo this terrible decision. In our democracy, that is the only opportunity that the framers provided us to change Supreme Court opinions. While amending the constitution will not be a short term fix, it may be necessary if we are to preserve the democratic values that we cherish.

Sadly, we really shouldn't be surprised by what has happened. During George W. Bush's presidency, Karl Rove made it clear to all that he was laying the groundwork for the corporate-backed Republican Party to maintain political control for decades to come.

Although President Obama convinced the American public in 2008 that the United States was headed in the wrong direction, we should not take for granted that Rove's plans would immediately unwind. By laying the ground work over eight years with the political appointments of judges, Rove and his republican allies knew that their efforts would pay off down the line... and with this ruling, they have succeeded.

With so much of concern going on, we can't savor the success of the last presidential election; we can't opt to sit on our couches and opt out of important elections that will define the direction of our country for years to come.

As voters, we need to support candidates and policies that will promote health care reform, campaign finance reform, comprehensive financial regulation, and strong environmental legislation. We must not allow special interests and their paid corporate lobbyists to block our efforts.

As we work toward change let's remember that it will also require patience... all the fights for fairness and equity in our country took a long time. The labor movement, women's rights and civil rights all required years of organizing, marching, lobbying and campaigning till their voices became the law of the land.

I wish this conservative Supreme Court that supposedly exercises judicial restraint and supports legal precedence had not flip-flopped for the second time in ten years (the first being Bush v. Gore) and become the most activist court in recent history. By reversing well-established election law, their judicial activism has set the stage to possibly erode the very fabric of our country.

But now that this has happened, it's our turn to send a message to Washington. We must support progressive candidates and turn out to vote for them. We must let both the political and media establishment know that we will not let our democracy get taken from us. As we organize, advocate, legislate, litigate, vote and govern, we must stand up to corporate power and speak truth to the American people so that...we the people and not...we the corporations prevail.

4th Quarter GDP Tops Predictions. Shows Best Growth In 6 Years. Market Should Start Running.

Just days after the State Of The Union --spelled out because we hate the SOTU usage-- Stephen Bernard is reporting that "stocks rose moderately Friday after the government's gross domestic product report showed that the economy grew at its fastest pace in six years.

The Commerce Department said GDP grew at an annual rate of 5.7 percent during the fourth quarter, easily topping economists' forecast of 4.5 percent."

Look for the strong GDP report to give the market another rally--one that could reign in more support for President Obama's economic plan.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

O'Keefe Taps All The Reasons Why Republicans Have Future Problems and Can't Be Trusted To Do Anything All While Learning A Lesson In Politics

The Associated Press and New York Daily News are reporting that James O'Keefe, the nerdy Young Republican turned conservative psycho ACORN stalker, has been arrested with 3 other friends --one of whom is allegedly the son of William J. Flanagan: the acting U.S. Attorney in Shreveport--for entering a federal office under false pretenses with intent of committing a federal felony. That felony: tapping a Senator's telephone.

The move is yet another example of how far the far-right will go to gain political ground and how dishonest, corrupt and unethical they are in their everyday activities.

If you don't recall, O'Keefe became a darling of the right and a favorite of Fox News' Glenn Beck last year for his "undercover" ACORN videos and has even been referred to as a "Conservative Icon". --which not only had us bothered, but should have given you a clear understanding of the type of people that are running the Republican Party.

Given that the Republican PACs around the country have financed O'Keefe's circus and have made him the person that he is, one would think that they would run to his support? Right? Wrong.

If you thought that, you are acting as though you've never met a Republican. Now that O'Keefe has made the felonious mistake of biting off more than he could chew, Republicans all over the place are distancing themselves from the upper-class, extremely conservative malefactor.

The was supposed to be the keynote speaker at a Salt Lake County GOP fundraiser on Feb. 4 But county GOP Chairman Thomas Wright told the Salt Lake Tribune: "We'll be announcing a new speaker shortly." and told the Washington Post "He doesn't necessarily represent the Republican Party."

Michelle Malkin, a well-known hypocritical-conservative mouthpiece and self-obsessed columnist, wrote late Tuesday that O'Keefe's intent to expose wrongdoing is not an excuse to break the law, and that O'Keefe's alleged actions should be taken seriously.

"Let it be a lesson to aspiring young conservatives interested in investigative journalism: Know your limits. Know the law," she wrote. " Don't get carried away. And don't become what you are targeting."

Rick Moran, host of a conservative talk radio show, told his listeners that it appeared that O'Keefe had ignored the requirement that journalists be objective.

"It appears to me that all of this notoriety went to the kid's head and he began to see himself as some kind of avenging angel for the right. . . . But this guy is no journalist -- conservative or otherwise. He's a glory hound."

Ouch. Expect more Republicans to come out against the 25-year old "glory hound". In the meantime, while he should be proud that in his incompetence he still managed to make it this far in the GOP --which in itself speaks volumes--, let's hope he's learned the long lesson in politics that so many before him have also learned. Today, James O'Keefe is no longer the toast of Republicanville, he's just toast.

Monday, January 25, 2010

GOP Should Not Forget That They Are Nowhere Close To Controlling Balance Of Power. Media Outlets Should Report The Same.

Republican leaders should take that title as good advice. In fact, they should probably pay us for it too.

Ever since a nude model turned part-time real-estate lawyer and full-time corporate legislator won a special election in Massaschusetts, media outlets all over the place have been acting as though Democrats actually lost a majority. In fact, click here and you will see that the Philadelphia Metro actually printed that falsehood. Here CNN reports the same. Here Twitter buzzes that local NBC news outlets in New York also reported the same, and here ABC follows suit

But reality tells a different story. While yes, the country --as well as Massachusetts and all that Ted Kennedy fought for-- would have been better off with someone that actually represents mainstream America and working class Americans, voters should understand that Democrats still hold a commanding 59-41 majority in The Senate. Similarly, it is the duty of media outlets to help them understand just how commanding a 59-41 majority lead in the Senate is.

The majority that Democrats currently hold in the Senate has not been matched for almost 20 years. To even come close, you would have to go back to the 1993-1995 Senate where Democrats held a 57-43 lead. To find a 58-41 lead with 1 Independent, you would have to go back as far as 1979-1981. (Source: US Senate Archives).

So spare us the talk of Democrats losing a majority. Someone please tell Michael Steele and the GOP to stop mailing census forms that are as real as a Chinese DVD. Someone tell global media outlets that a McDonald's Big Mac in the middle of Texas faces more danger than a Democratic majority in D.C.--which is exactly why a Republican controlled Supreme Court causally opened the door for unlimited foreign-run corporate participation in our electoral process.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

BREAKING: Vicky Hartzler Has Went Insane, Opposes Billions to the 4th Congressional

Republican congressional candidate Vicky Hartzler has always been two steps from the coo-coo nest, but today she actually made public that she has gone insane.

Ok, not really. But close enough.

In a press release, Hartzler stated that Ike Skelton is weak on national security due to his support of liberal economic policies. This the very same week that Skelton brought billions to Missouri's military bases inside his Congressional district.

Skelton is one of those blue dog moderate Democrats that has always supported national security and military spending to the very end, even under President Bush. Obviously, Hartzler has no experience on national security matters. In fact, it may be safe to say that national security could be breached if Hartzler is elected Congresswoman. She has that less knowledge on issues of national security and the economy compared to Skelton.

We at the KC Blue Blog call on the Missouri Republican Party to public distance themselves from Vicky Hartzler after such comments. We also call on the press to hold Hartzler accountable for such ludacris statements. In these tough economic times, billions to our military bases locally, sparks a return in the economy that this state desperately needs. At this point Hartzler has become as credible as a pre-schooler when it comes to knowledge on issues facing this state and nation.
 

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