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Tag: Barack Obama

Obama
AP photo / Darin McGregor, Pool

Obama Gets Aggressive on Cutting the Deficit

Despite the fact that he’s looking at a trillion-plus deficit for 2009 as he settles into his second month as president, Barack Obama has plans to cut the annual deficit by half by the time his first term ends.

Posted on Feb 20, 2009 READ MORE


Spike Lee
manolomen.com

Spike Lee Throws Down in N.Y. Post Cartoon Controversy

If the higher-ups at the New York Post thought that running a simple apology for printing the now-notorious chimpanzee cartoon this week would constitute enough damage control to do the trick, here comes filmmaker Spike Lee—along with the Post’s arch-rival publication, the New York Daily News—to disabuse them of this notion.

Posted on Feb 20, 2009 READ MORE


Sen. Burris
senate.gov

First Blagojevich, Next Burris?

Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich didn’t go down without a big fight (or a full-on media assault), and judging by the comportment of his controversial Senate pick, Roland Burris, we can expect another show of defiance if Burris is put on trial for perjury.

Posted on Feb 20, 2009 READ MORE



telegraph.co.uk

N.Y. Post Apologizes for Monkey Business

In the face of angry protests outside its offices, the New York Post has apologized, with qualifications, for publishing a cartoon about the stimulus package showing a dead chimpanzee that many readers saw as representing President Obama. But in its half-hearted mea culpa, the Post made little direct reference to the racist stereotype that sparked the controversy in the first place.

Posted on Feb 20, 2009 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons

Getting to Zero

John Isaacs, executive director of the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation, joins the podcast with a status report on the spread of nuclear weapons. Cutting a deal with Iran and North Korea while getting the U.S. and Russia to downsize their own arsenals won’t be easy, but it may be only a matter of time—and diplomacy.

Posted on Feb 20, 2009 READ MORE


Past the Point of No Return

It’s fitting that Barack Obama went to Denver to sign the stimulus bill. We’re just now starting to climb the challenging “Rocky Mountains” of this economic odyssey.

Posted on Feb 19, 2009 READ MORE


U.S. Fear, U.S. Folly in Afghanistan

Except for the brief NATO intervention in Kosovo and Serbia, all of the significant U.S. military expeditions since the Cold War have been fought against Asians, and we have lost nearly all of them.

Posted on Feb 19, 2009 READ MORE


Post protest

Protesters Call for Boycott of N.Y. Post

The New York Post may yet discover that not all publicity is good publicity, particularly when it comes to the Rupert Murdoch-owned paper’s decision to run a cartoon on Wednesday linking Washington politicians (perhaps one in particular) to a marauding chimpanzee. The cartoon sparked an uproar that on Thursday found hundreds of protesters demanding a boycott of the Post by readers and advertisers.

Posted on Feb 19, 2009 READ MORE



AP photo / M. Spencer Green

Health Care Reform Can’t Wait

The national health care crisis, intensified by the recession, is so bad that nothing can be permitted to stop reform of the system, not even the implosion of the president’s health czar.

Posted on Feb 19, 2009 READ MORE


The Pencil

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Posted on Feb 19, 2009 READ MORE    


Good News for the Taliban

We seem to have spent our way—to the tune of $864 billion—into allowing our friends the Pakistanis to enter into a peace treaty, or something that looks like it, with the Taliban.

Posted on Feb 18, 2009 READ MORE


There Was No GOP ‘Victory’

Republicans congratulate themselves for remaining unified in defeat and whine about Obama’s refusal to capitulate—but in fact it is they who have failed in the initial episode of a confrontation that will certainly continue for four years.

Posted on Feb 18, 2009 READ MORE


Downward Automobility

It makes sense to prop up ailing carmakers. Allowing GM and Chrysler to go bankrupt could be a triggering event that might make a very bad economy much worse.

Posted on Feb 18, 2009 READ MORE


General Chrysler
truckend.com

More Aid, Please

General Motors, recipient of the 2009 “Nation’s Most Resistant-to-Change Company That Still Gets Federal Assistance” award, wants more. The auto giant on Wednesday asked for $16.6 billion in loans, on top of the $13.4 billion already granted. All this amid GM plans to shed 47,000 jobs worldwide.

Posted on Feb 18, 2009 READ MORE


Bank Owned
willows-journal.com

$75 Billion to Fight Foreclosures

While $700 billion was given to the banks and credit institutions that haphazardly pushed forward our current economic fiasco, millions of homeowners at risk of foreclosure may now be given only about one-tenth of that figure—$75 billion—in an effort to slow the deterioration of the housing market.

Posted on Feb 18, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Paul Morse / Pete Souza

Good Money After Bad

Congressional Republicans, with the exception of that embarrassingly shrunken contingent of three moderates, will rue their legacy of deep indifference at a time of true national emergency, one that makes George W. Bush’s far more costly war on terror now seem an absurdly irrelevant exercise.

Posted on Feb 18, 2009 READ MORE


America’s Confused Cause in Central Asia

Exactly what do we think we are doing in Afghanistan and Pakistan? Are we there to liberalize their forms of religious observance, or conduct a war over theology, or establish permanent NATO bases there, or are we searching for Osama bin Laden? It seems that we are doing all of these things at the same time. But why?

Posted on Feb 18, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / Aaron Escobar

Coping With Corporate Media

The Truthdig Podcast is back and better than ever. This week the panel tackles our obsession with imperfect athletes, the first days of the Obama administration and the decline of media. Special guest Megan Tady, campaign coordinator for Free Press, joins James Harris and Josh Scheer.

Posted on Feb 17, 2009 READ MORE



DoD / Sgt. Zach Otto, U.S. Army

Obama Throws 17,000 Troops at Afghanistan Mess

President Obama’s desire to escalate the war in Afghanistan, a sore spot for the progressives and anti-war folk who helped elect him, took a major step forward Tuesday when the White House announced plans to raise troop levels in Afghanistan by 50 percent over the next few months.

Posted on Feb 17, 2009 READ MORE


Burris
senate.gov

Burris Did More for Blagojevich Than He Let On

Surprise! Roland Burris has no credibility. The man who condemned former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich for allegedly trying to sell Barack Obama’s Senate seat—until he was appointed to it—has revealed that, contrary to what he told the United States Congress in sworn testimony, he tried to raise money, as requested, for the governor-turned-auctioneer.

Posted on Feb 17, 2009 READ MORE


Putin
AP pool photo / Alexei Druzhinin

Avoiding Another Cold War

Relations with Russia haven’t been this frosty since there was an East Berlin. President Obama may be distracted by other priorities, but getting reacquainted with Vladimir Putin and his nuclear arsenal should be at the top of the list.

Posted on Feb 17, 2009 READ MORE


Carmaker, Banker, Broker ...

Obama must deal with a new presidential role that he did not seek but cannot avoid: managing big chunks of the private-sector economy.

Posted on Feb 16, 2009 READ MORE


Hope mural
flickr/jetheriot

And Now for the Disillusionment Phase

His presidency is not yet a month old, but there already are some who are wondering aloud whether Barack Obama is going to make good on his pre-election pledges. What’s this—he’s a politician?

Posted on Feb 16, 2009 READ MORE


Denver
flickr/jeffrey beall

Obama to Take Stimulus-Signing Act to Denver

It’s finally happening: President Barack Obama is about to sign the stimulus bill. Get ready, people of Denver—he’s going to do the honors at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, of course—where else?

Posted on Feb 16, 2009 READ MORE



AP photo / Petros Giannakouris

Bad News From America’s Top Spy

It turns out that Wall Street, rather than Islamic jihad, has produced our most dangerous terrorists. Just ask the new director of national intelligence, who warned that the deepening economic crisis could trigger a return to the “violent extremism” of the 1920s and 1930s.

Posted on Feb 16, 2009 READ MORE


A Hand on History

President Obama senses that fate has handed him opportunities few presidents ever get, and that his test will be whether he makes good use of his chance to bend history at one of its “inflection points.”

Posted on Feb 15, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / Jeffrey Beall

Pols Sink or Swim With the Stimulus

President Obama on Tuesday will sign the stimulus bill, which passed without the support of a single House Republican and with only three votes from the GOP in the Senate. With battle lines that stark, lawmakers have tied their fates to that of the bill.

Posted on Feb 15, 2009 READ MORE


Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: The Stimulus, the Bailout and Judd Gregg

How stimulating is the stimulus, really? Did Obama bite off more than he could chew? Who wears the pants at the Treasury Department? Answers to these questions and more in this week’s episode.

Posted on Feb 15, 2009 READ MORE


Geithner
AP photo / Gerald Herbert

Mr. Inside

The treasury secretary will get much better at making his case. I’m confident in that prediction because after watching his debut this week, I don’t see how he could get much worse.

Posted on Feb 13, 2009 READ MORE


Israel’s Lose-Lose Election

Of the possible political combinations that have emerged from the Israeli parliamentary election, none will bring the region closer to peace. Israel will continue to persecute the Palestinians, whose hatred will only grow.

Posted on Feb 12, 2009 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Another Nominee Bites the Dust

Apparently nobody wants to be President Obama’s commerce secretary. The second candidate for the post, Sen. Judd Gregg, has dropped out. The Republican senator cited “irresolvable conflicts,” including the stimulus package and the census. That’s what you get for trying to make nice with those fussy Republicans.

Posted on Feb 12, 2009 READ MORE


Abraham Obama
Flickr/Lord Jim

Obama Salutes Lincoln Yet Again

In case you didn’t know already, Barack Obama is a big fan of Abraham Lincoln. The current president (No. 44) made his admiration apparent once again on Thursday, during a ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda marking his predecessor’s (No. 16) 200th birthday.

Posted on Feb 12, 2009 READ MORE


‘Daily Show’: ‘You Had Me at We’re F$%#ed’

Jon Stewart applies his usual comic talents to Barack Obama’s first news conference, complete with a showdown between Bill O’Reilly and Chris Matthews.

Posted on Feb 12, 2009 READ MORE


The High Cost of Centrism

The Obama administration keeps having to learn that bland centrism is not pragmatic, it’s not helpful in resolving a big crisis, and it certainly doesn’t buy you any love.

Posted on Feb 11, 2009 READ MORE


Where’s the Top Gun?

Well, that didn’t work out. In pushing for a new financial industry bailout, Treasury Secretary Geithner came across like a banker trying to do a politician’s job. Obama owes us some hands-on involvement.

Posted on Feb 11, 2009 READ MORE


Stronger, Please, Mr. President

Having allowed his Republican opponents to dominate the economic debate, Obama used his first news conference to rebut them—coolly and civilly, yet without leaving any doubt that he can strike back harder if necessary.

Posted on Feb 11, 2009 READ MORE


Club Gitmo
rushlimbaugh.com

Limbaugh Selling ‘Club Gitmo’ Gear

Leave it to the proto-fascists to find a way to make money off torture, human rights abuses and the degradation of America’s image abroad. Rush Limbaugh has found it acceptable to sell “Club Gitmo” shirts on his Web site, complete with the image of a diving board and swimming pool (water + board, get it?).

Posted on Feb 11, 2009 READ MORE


Reid
The New York Times / Susan Etheridge

Reid Announces Stimulus Agreement

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced Wednesday afternoon that congressional leaders have finally agreed on a $789 billion economic stimulus package, pushing the plan to a final House and Senate vote by Friday at the earliest.

Posted on Feb 11, 2009 READ MORE


Obama’s Afghan Trap

Have we learned nothing from the Iraq war? The Obama regime is gunning for more fighting in Afghanistan at a time when the U.S. should be seeking more talk.

Posted on Feb 11, 2009 READ MORE


Geithner
AP photo / Lawrence Jackson

No Tough Love for Wall Street

What an insipid anticlimax! Rising to “a challenge more complex than our financial system has ever faced,” Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner promised on Tuesday to give trillions more to the very folks who profited from that malignant complexity.

Posted on Feb 10, 2009 READ MORE


Ahmadinejad
observer.com

Ahmadinejad to U.S.: Let’s Talk (Maybe)

On Tuesday, the 30th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution in his country, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad extended a tentative offer to open a dialogue between the U.S. and Iran—provided that the Obama administration makes good on its “change” slogan.

Posted on Feb 10, 2009 READ MORE


offshore drilling
Wikimedia Commons / U.S. Department of Energy

Salazar Shelves Bush’s Offshore Drilling Plans

Just before he skedaddled out of the White House, President Bush worked out a scheme to make millions of acres of the American coast available for offshore drilling, but on Tuesday, President Obama’s interior secretary, Ken Salazar, brought those plans to a halt, at least for the next six months.

Posted on Feb 10, 2009 READ MORE


Barack Obama
White House / Pete Souza

Slam the Door on Compromise

Bipartisanship is a cute idea, but with 600,000 Americans losing their jobs in one month, there simply isn’t time to be nice.

Posted on Feb 9, 2009 READ MORE


Supreme Sexism

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s renewed struggle with cancer is both a demonstration of courage and a dismaying reminder that she represents a quota of one.

Posted on Feb 9, 2009 READ MORE


Obama
AP photo / Ron Edmonds

Obama Pushes to Sell an Effective Stimulus

He has his opponents in Congress, but President Barack Obama is stressing the need to settle the stimulus issue—and fast. On Monday, in his first major news conference since assuming office, Obama warned of economic troubles ahead and presented the stimulus package as a possible way out.

Posted on Feb 9, 2009 READ MORE


Krugman
bloomberg.com

Krugman: Down With Centrist Senators

Note to all the senators who trotted out their best horse-trading tactics to create the latest, pared-down version of the stimulus bill: Paul Krugman does not approve of your centrist ways.

Posted on Feb 9, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / AtomicPope

What Price Hollywood?

I visited the Hollywood Forever Cemetery in Los Angeles a few days ago. It is advertised as “the final resting place to more of Hollywood’s founders and stars than anywhere else on Earth.” We all have gods, Martin Luther said, it is just a question of which ones. And in American society, our gods are often celebrities.

Posted on Feb 9, 2009 READ MORE


The Real Obama

It took less than three weeks for the real Barack Obama to come into view. He turns out to be both a conciliator and a fighter. Update

Posted on Feb 8, 2009 READ MORE


SCHIP

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Posted on Feb 8, 2009 READ MORE


Napolitano
AP photo / J. Scott Applewhite

Obama’s Immigration Conundrum

One of the worst messes facing the Obama administration is the disgraceful state of the federal government’s immigration detention centers.

Posted on Feb 7, 2009 READ MORE


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