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Tag: Barack Obama

What Are the Birthers Really After?

Why this obsession over Obama’s birthplace persists is a question that evokes disturbing answers.

Posted on Aug 5, 2009 READ MORE


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Flickr / ThreadedThoughts

Hold On to Your Clunkers, the Cash Is Coming

The Senate is finally getting around to approving more money for the wildly successful “cash for clunkers” program, which seems to have saved the auto industry from the forces of recession and bankruptcy. With an additional $2 billion on the way, the administration hopes to transform 500,000 more clunkers into cleaner, smaller, more efficient vehicles.

Posted on Aug 5, 2009 READ MORE


Read My Lips: We Need to Raise Taxes

Does President Obama care about passing health care reform that truly gets costs under control and getting the nation’s fiscal house in order or does he care more about getting re-elected?

Posted on Aug 4, 2009 READ MORE


A Coup for Lobbyists at the White House

Honduran President Manuel Zelaya, ousted in the middle of the night just over a month ago, enjoys global support for his return, with the exception of the Obama White House.

Posted on Aug 4, 2009 READ MORE


Kim Jong Il and Clinton
AP / Korean Central News Agency via Korea News Service

Bill Clinton Reportedly Wins Freedom for 2 U.S. Journalists in N. Korea

Although his wife is usually the one making headlines about international relations these days, former President Bill Clinton put on his diplomat’s hat Tuesday, visiting North Korea in an attempt to negotiate the release of two American journalists jailed there. Updated

Posted on Aug 4, 2009 READ MORE



fightthesmears.com

Happy Birthday, Mr. President

On this Tuesday, the 48th anniversary of your birth, we thought we’d remind you that you were born in Honolulu, which is in the United States of America, no matter what those pesky “birthers” have to say about it. Here’s a copy of your birth certificate, in case you need one.

Posted on Aug 4, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / soggydan

If a Republican Votes Against Sotomayor, Does it Make a Sound?

Republicans are so against the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court that even John McCain, a self-proclaimed maverick with plenty of Latino constituents, says he will vote against her. Thing is, there just aren’t enough Republicans in the Senate for party unity to make a difference.

Posted on Aug 3, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / brownpau

The Nut Job as Political Force

If there’s been a more clinically insane political phenomenon in my lifetime than the “birthers,” I’ve missed it. Is this what our national discourse has come to? Sheer paranoid fantasy?

Posted on Aug 3, 2009 READ MORE



US Navy / MC1 Tiffini M. Jones

GI Bill Sends Vets Back to School

More than 100,000 veterans have already submitted claims under Sen. Jim Webb’s new GI Bill, which aims to pay for the college tuition, housing and books of students who served in the military after 9/10/2001. That number is expected to hit 500,000 in the program’s first year. (More after jump)

Posted on Aug 3, 2009 READ MORE


Obama’s Pen Pals

Every day the president reads 10 letters from the public that are handpicked by his staff. Lately, he says, a lot of them are about health care. Here’s a White House-produced look at the process.

Posted on Aug 3, 2009 WATCH & LISTEN


Gibbs
AP / Alex Brandon

White House: No Tax Hikes for Middle Class

On Monday, after two of President Obama’s economic sidekicks, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and National Economic Council Director Lawrence Summers, made noises over the weekend about the possibility that middle-class Americans may pay higher taxes in the near future, the White House went into damage control mode.

Posted on Aug 3, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / Rennet Stowe

Guantanamo 2

President Obama has ordered the prison at Guantanamo Bay closed by January 2010. To meet that deadline, the administration may push for a new detention facility on U.S. soil. Such a compound, sources tell AP, would include space for the indefinite detention of prisoners deemed too dangerous to face trial.

Posted on Aug 3, 2009 READ MORE



AP / LM Otero

So Much for the Promised Land

The most prominent faces of color, such as President Obama or Harvard’s Henry Louis Gates Jr., mask an insidious new racism that, in essence, tells blacks they have enough, that progress has been made and that it is up to them to take advantage of what society offers them.

Posted on Aug 3, 2009 READ MORE


Can Republicans Escape Their Extremists?

Things are looking up for the Republicans, relatively speaking. There’s just one problem: The country still doesn’t like them.

Posted on Aug 3, 2009 READ MORE


Optimistani









Posted on Aug 2, 2009 ENLARGE


Bill Maher: Fringe Losers Can Ruin Everything

The “Real Time” host battles the birthers, “the far-right goofballs who claim Obama wasn’t really born in Hawaii and therefore the job of president goes to the runner-up, Miss California Carrie Prejean.” [Video fixed]

Posted on Aug 2, 2009 WATCH & LISTEN


Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: Bonuses, Blue Dogs and Beer

This week’s show covers flagrant shenanigans in the financial world—could it be that Tony Blankley makes a move toward the left? Meanwhile, lefty Robert Scheer is the surprising deficit hawk in the mix, and Arianna Huffington and Matt Miller clash over whether the absence of a strong public provision in Congress’ emerging health plan represents a betrayal of the American people. Also: beer!

Posted on Jul 31, 2009 WATCH & LISTEN


Afghan Funeral
guim.co.uk

Afghan Civilian Toll Rises

As President Obama continues to push more U.S. troops into Afghanistan, the U.N. is reporting that civilian casualties in the war-torn country have spiked, increasing almost 25 percent above 2008 figures. In the first six months of this year, 1,013 civilians were killed.

Posted on Jul 31, 2009 READ MORE



U.S. Navy

It’s Time for the U.S. to Declare Victory and Go Home

As the old saying goes, “guests, like fish, begin to smell after three days.” Since the signing of the 2009 Security Agreement, we are guests in Iraq, and after six years in Iraq, we now smell bad to the Iraqi nose.

Posted on Jul 30, 2009 READ MORE


Summit Up









Posted on Jul 30, 2009 ENLARGE    


America’s Homeland Security Surplus

Since 2001, there has been no actual terrorist attack reported inside the United States, much less one involving al-Qaida. Plenty of people have been killed by fellow Americans, ordinarily in old-fashioned ways, during that period.

Posted on Jul 30, 2009 READ MORE


Obama’s Dangerous Dance With Crowley and Gates

Let me declare my bias up front. No, I am not a friend of Henry “Skip” Gates, but I had an encounter with the Cambridge police similar to that of the good professor—36 years ago!

Posted on Jul 30, 2009 READ MORE


A Time, Again, for Bill Clinton

Perhaps the time has come, if it isn’t already too late, for President Obama to ask for help from President Clinton.

Posted on Jul 29, 2009 READ MORE


The Marvel That Is Medicare

Medicare is where political posturing runs headlong into historical truth: It is, along with Social Security, the most successful government program that the United States has ever created.

Posted on Jul 29, 2009 READ MORE


Let’s End the Score-Settling

The problem with “teachable moments” is that the term sets up one group of people as teachers while another group is consigned to the role of pupils. In a democracy, that’s troublesome.

Posted on Jul 29, 2009 READ MORE


Less Than Perfect Health Care Reform

If only Democrats and Republicans could get together and produce a health care bill that would expand coverage and control costs. But wait—there is such a proposal. In fact, there are two.

Posted on Jul 29, 2009 READ MORE



finance.senate.gov

Public Option Headed for Senate Death

Looks like the insurance companies are getting what they’ve paid for in the U.S. Congress. The Senate Finance Committee is closer to a deal with Republicans, which means no public health care option. The Blue Dogs, meanwhile, are still nipping at the heels of House Democrats.

Posted on Jul 29, 2009 READ MORE


China visit
AP / Gerald Herbert

The Chinese Come Calling

What a hoot. The Chinese Communists invaded Washington on Monday demanding not that we sacrifice our freedoms but rather that we balance our budget. Creditors get to make that kind of call. And the Marxists of Beijing, who have turned out to be the world’s most prudent bankers, are worried about their assets invested in our banana republic. 

Posted on Jul 28, 2009 READ MORE


‘Colorful’ Leaders Could Learn From Boring Brown

It sometimes pays to be a nondescript politician, like Gordon Brown of Britain. Flamboyance of the Latin kind gets you into the newspapers, but for bad reasons as well as good.

Posted on Jul 28, 2009 READ MORE


Obama’s Military Is Spying on U.S. Peace Groups

Anti-war activists in Olympia, Wash., have exposed Army spying and infiltration of their groups, as well as intelligence gathering by the Air Force, the federal Capitol Police and the Coast Guard.

Posted on Jul 28, 2009 READ MORE


police car
AP / Nick Ut

America the Great ... Police State

Let us accept the facts staring us in the face – that demonstrably we are no longer a republic. We are no longer governed by laws, only by armed men and force. This is just like the days of Billy the Kid. You have an armed man going down a dusty street and that is authority. And it has come to this for us.

Posted on Jul 28, 2009 READ MORE


What if the Big Cheese Had Been White?

If race were the only issue, there would be much less hyperventilation about Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr.‘s unpleasant run-in with the criminal justice system. The debate is also about power and entitlement.

Posted on Jul 28, 2009 READ MORE


US Interest building
cubaheadlines.com

American News Ticker Goes Dark in Havana

After vexing Cuban officials (and citizens, no doubt) for three years, a U.S. government-sponsored electronic billboard that featured news and information blips tailored for a Cuban audience from an American-friendly angle has been switched off in the interest of changing the diplomatic tone between the two countries.

Posted on Jul 27, 2009 READ MORE


Slow Down









Posted on Jul 27, 2009 ENLARGE



UNICEF Iran / Hevash Ghader

U.S. Treats Refugees Like Terrorists

McClatchy reports on a section of the Patriot Act that bizarrely requires the U.S. to treat certain refugees as terrorists. Sami Alkarim, an Iraqi artist who was tortured by Saddam Hussein’s regime, can’t get his status sorted “because of messenger work he did as a teenager for the same political party that counts the current prime minister of Iraq as a member.”

Posted on Jul 26, 2009 READ MORE


obama
White House / Pete Souza

Obama Invites Prof. Gates, Sgt. Crowley to White House

The strange saga involving an African-American Harvard professor, a white Cambridge, Mass., police officer and a crash course in racial politics may have reached a (somewhat) happy ending—or at least an interesting one—now that President Obama has invited Dr. Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Sgt. James Crowley to the White House to try to work it all out together.

Posted on Jul 24, 2009 READ MORE



DoD

Psst! We May Never Leave

While affirming the Dec. 31, 2011, date for the pullout of U.S. troops from Iraq, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki did mention in a speech to a Washington think tank the possibility of extending that deadline if Iraqi forces still required “further training and further support.”

Posted on Jul 24, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / jonrawlinson

The Attack of the 1-Percenters

The wealthiest 1 percent’s share of America’s total income is the highest it’s been since 1929, their tax rates are the lowest they’ve faced in two decades and they’ve bought unprecedented protection for themselves on the most pressing issues.

Posted on Jul 23, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Obama Boosts America’s Public Image

A survey conducted by the Pew Research Center shows that people in 25 countries view the U.S. more favorably now that President Obama is in office than they did during the Bush II era, but it’s not a worldwide trend—Israel and parts of the Muslim world are among the exceptions.

Posted on Jul 23, 2009 READ MORE


U.S. Foreign Wars Not Going According to Plan

For all America’s trouble, Iraq has turned out to be a sectarian, authoritarian ally of Iran with no interest in working with the U.S. The “new Vietnam” of Afghanistan, meanwhile, is turning out to be worse than Vietnam.

Posted on Jul 23, 2009 READ MORE


ENTER_ALT_TEXT

Barack Who?

As Barack Obama begins his seventh month in office, mainstream news anchors still can’t seem to figure out the president’s citizenship. ... I mean, was this guy even born here? Jon Stewart examines how this mystery man got to be the American president in the first place. Check out this clip from last night’s “Daily Show.”

Posted on Jul 23, 2009 WATCH & LISTEN


The Politics of Tenacity

Wow, what big and unexpected news! Reforming the health care system is really hard, and Republicans want President Obama to fail. Imagine that.

Posted on Jul 23, 2009 READ MORE



DoD / Cherie A. Thurlby

Blue Dogs: The Special Interest Pets

Fiscal conservative is one of those terms used by politicians of all sorts to describe themselves, without any real justification. That phrase is often used to mislead the public about the priorities and policies favored by those who claim to embody budgetary prudence.

Posted on Jul 23, 2009 READ MORE


Health Plan: Ask ‘What,’ Not ‘When’

Now that it’s gripped the imaginations of politicians and the media, the politics of the calendar has overtaken the plain truth that Congress already is moving—barely moving, and not necessarily to a triumphal finish—toward reform.

Posted on Jul 23, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Obama Met With Health Execs and Lobbyists

From AP: “President Barack Obama’s administration began holding private meetings with health industry executives at the White House a few weeks after he took office, a visitor list released Wednesday night by the White House shows.” The White House released the list in response to a Freedom of Information Act request.

Posted on Jul 22, 2009 READ MORE


Obama’s Health Care Press Conference

The president must have had those blue dogs in mind when he attempted to link health care reform to deficit reduction during his press conference Wednesday. At least one pundit called it a defining moment. We embed, you decide.

Posted on Jul 22, 2009 WATCH & LISTEN


Barack Obama
White House / Lawrence Jackson

Obama Pushes Health Care in the Face of Delays

President Obama made an appeal Wednesday night for health care reform, complete with this zinger: “This isn’t about me. I have great health insurance, and so does every Member of Congress.” However, his Senate mentor, Dick Durbin, said not to expect a health care vote before the August recess. Excerpts from the president’s speech and video after the jump.

Posted on Jul 22, 2009 READ MORE


F-22
DoD / Master Sgt. Kevin J. Gruenwald, USAF

Deep-Sixing the F-22

I’ll believe it when it finally happens. But the news that Congress might actually stop production of a high-tech, job-generating and, most of all, high-profit weapons system because it fills no legitimate national security function is a considerable victory for President Barack Obama and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, as well as for logic.

Posted on Jul 21, 2009 READ MORE


Take Politics Out of Health Care Reform

If you’re interested in how to get health care costs under control, the case of the F-22 offers an instructive example.

Posted on Jul 21, 2009 READ MORE


Obama Means Business About Two-State Solution

There is new evidence that the Obama government is serious about halting Israel’s colonization of the Palestinian territories—and about imposing, rather than merely inviting, a two-state Middle East solution.

Posted on Jul 21, 2009 READ MORE


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