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Cinema by the Bay

Cinema by the Bay

By Sheerly Avni

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Tag: Senate

‘Australia Loses Freedom Points’ Edition

Chinese swingers head to jail, Australia hunts down and grounds the founder of WikiLeaks, and David Lynch does Dior. All this and more on today’s list.

Posted on May 19, 2010 READ MORE


Square, Category Page

Wall Street bull
Flickr / kdinuraj

Wall Street Reform Stalls in Senate

By day’s end Wednesday, our chums over at the U.S. Senate hadn’t moved much closer to the finish line in dealing with the financial regulation bill, to the chagrin of some senators and, no doubt, the satisfaction of others.

Posted on May 19, 2010 READ MORE

A Smorgasbord, Not a Tea Party

Almost all the shibboleths of Washington conventional wisdom took a hit in Tuesday’s voting. Yet advocates of a single national political narrative keep spinning the same old tale.

Posted on May 19, 2010 READ MORE

Bill Halter
Flickr / AFL-CIO (CC-BY)

Unions Punish Lincoln in Arkansas

Sen. Blanche Lincoln helped sink the proposed Employee Free Choice Act, which would have made labor organizing much easier. Now the Democrat is headed to a primary runoff against Arkansas Lt. Gov. Bill Halter (above), thanks in part to a massive multimillion-dollar campaign effort by the AFL-CIO and the SEIU ... (continued)

Posted on May 18, 2010 READ MORE

AFL-CIO / Steve Dietz (CC-BY)

Voters Reject Party-Switching Specter

Former Republican Sen. Arlen Specter’s plan to switch parties in order to avoid losing a primary battle didn’t exactly work out. Despite support from the president, Specter lost the Pennsylvania Democratic primary Tuesday.

Posted on May 18, 2010 READ MORE

Associated Press via Los Angeles Times

Clinton Announces Iran Sanction Plan to Senate Committee

After months of negotiations between the U.S. and other members of the United Nations Security Council, as well as push-back from Russia and China in particular, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Tuesday that ... (continued)

Posted on May 18, 2010 READ MORE

Citing Kagan’s Lack of Judging Experience, GOP Proposes Paula Abdul

“The American people have had years of watching Paula’s judging expertise, and they know that she is fair,” said Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee. “She’s certainly fairer than Simon.”

Posted on May 16, 2010 READ MORE

Brown and Kagan
AP / Alex Brandon

Kagan Goes A’Courtin’ on Capitol Hill

On Thursday, Supreme Court hopeful Elena Kagan observed the nominee tradition of making the rounds on Capitol Hill by dropping in on key senators from both sides of the aisle, and it seems she made some key gains—even Scott Brown might vote to confirm her!

Posted on May 13, 2010 READ MORE

The Elena Kagan You Won’t See

Brace yourself for several months of occasionally biting but essentially meaningless political theater over the nomination of Solicitor General Kagan to the Supreme Court.

Posted on May 12, 2010 READ MORE

Obama’s Feminist Touch

The Kagan nomination reminds us that Barack Obama is the first president raised on feminist principles.

Posted on May 12, 2010 READ MORE

Advise and Wimp Out

Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan has—or had, anyway—the right vision of what confirmation hearings for the high court should be.

Posted on May 12, 2010 READ MORE

Stuck in a Rut

Posted on May 12, 2010 ENLARGE

AIG sign

Senate Gives the Go-Ahead for Fed Lending Probe

When big financial institutions got themselves into a serious pickle in the fall of 2008, the Federal Reserve was there with beaucoup bucks in loans to prop them up. On Tuesday, the Senate voted unanimously to launch an inquiry into the Fed’s lending practices during the financial crisis.

Posted on May 11, 2010 WATCH & LISTEN

AP / Gerald Herbert

Clash of the Oil Titans

In the messy wake of the BP Gulf of Mexico disaster, three giants of the oil industry—the aforementioned British Petroleum, perennial favorite Halliburton and Transocean—were butting heads and looking to stick each other ... (continued)

Posted on May 11, 2010 READ MORE

A Fragile Partnership

The present crisis of the European Union was inherent in the creation of the institution itself.

Posted on May 4, 2010 READ MORE

Tory Lessons for Republicans

Britain’s Conservative Party has found a winning brand by reaching out to the left, while conservatives across the pond alienate voters with angry rhetoric and fringe positions.

Posted on May 3, 2010 READ MORE

U.S. Air Force / Airman 1st Class Eboni Knox

No One Cares

We are approaching a decade of war in Afghanistan, and the war in Iraq is in its eighth year. The peace movement, despite the heroic efforts of a handful of groups, is dead.

Posted on May 3, 2010 READ MORE

The Good Ol’ Days Before Anesthesia

Nevada’s leading Senate candidate, who wants to return to the barter system, makes Sarah Palin sound like an intellectual, but they share a nostalgia for a golden age that never was.

Posted on Apr 29, 2010 READ MORE

Live Chat: Robert Scheer on the Goldman Hearings

Will the Goldman Sachs hearings really accomplish anything? Are the Democrats just showboating? What are the prospects for real financial reform? Robert Scheer answers these reader questions and more.

Posted on Apr 29, 2010 READ MORE

It Takes Power to Control Power

Discredited as the financial powers are, their wealth alone continues to provide them with wildly disproportionate influence over the political process.

Posted on Apr 28, 2010 READ MORE

The Republican to See Suddenly Won’t Deal

It isn’t easy being a caucus of one. Sometimes you don’t even agree with yourself. Just ask Sen. Lindsey Graham, the Democrats’ go-to Republican.

Posted on Apr 28, 2010 READ MORE

AP / Charles Dharapak

‘God, What a Piece of Crap’

It was the Perry Mason moment in the unraveling of what was left of Goldman Sachs’ reputation. Only in this case, it involved a grizzled former prosecutor, Sen. Carl Levin, rather than a genial defense attorney.

Posted on Apr 27, 2010 READ MORE

Fabulous Fab
AP / Charles Dharapak

‘Fabulous Fab’ Puffed Up, Even as Senate Dresses Him Down

Calling him “short, slight and looking as though he were on a break from prep school,” The Washington Post’s Dana Milbank devoted his entire column Wednesday to the “arrogance” of Goldman Sachs wunderkind Fabrice “Fabulous Fab” Tourre, as well he should have done.

Posted on Apr 27, 2010 READ MORE


Goldman Sachs Bigwigs Dispute Charges

Step right up and you’ll see spectacles that will amaze from Tuesday’s face-off between senators and Goldman Sachs boss men, such as the awesome Fabrice Tourre denying “categorically” that he misled clients by selling them mysterious bundled financial entities tied to doomed mortgages.

Posted on Apr 27, 2010 WATCH & LISTEN

Flickr / laura padgett (CC-BY-ND)

Lawmakers Agree Not to Give Themselves a Raise

Following a similar gesture in the Senate, the House voted Tuesday to freeze members’ pay before an automatic raise could kick in. It adds up to only $1 million in savings, but it’s the politics that count in this election/recession year.

Posted on Apr 27, 2010 READ MORE

Arizona’s Act of Vengeance

Arizona’s draconian new immigration law is an abomination—racist, arbitrary, oppressive, mean-spirited, unjust. About the only hopeful thing that can be said is that the legislation goes so outrageously far that it may well be unconstitutional.

Posted on Apr 26, 2010 READ MORE

AP / Henny Ray Abrams

GOP Drafting Rival Financial Reform Bill

Senate Republicans are hoping that, when it comes to their Democratic opponents, if they can’t beat ’em, they can at least make up their own financial reform bill to thwart ’em. One pesky problem with the GOP’s approach is ... (continued)

Posted on Apr 26, 2010 READ MORE

The New Secessionists

The difference between the tea party and the secessionist movement bubbling up in some two dozen states is that the tea party believes America can be fixed.

Posted on Apr 26, 2010 READ MORE

U.S. Air Force / Staff Sgt. Manuel J. Martinez

When It Comes to War, Congress Is on Permanent Vacation

Judging by the lack of interest, involvement and oversight, it’s difficult not to conclude that Congress has largely taken a not-my-problem approach to America’s wars. (continued)

Posted on Apr 25, 2010 READ MORE

Titan Over Wall Street

Perhaps Obama could have scored more popularity points if he had ordered a few financiers to be led out of the Cooper Union auditorium in handcuffs.

Posted on Apr 22, 2010 READ MORE

4.5 Steps to Building a Better Filibuster

My approach on the filibuster is the same as Bill Clinton’s on affirmative action: mend it, don’t end it. Here are four and a half steps to a better filibuster.

Posted on Apr 20, 2010 READ MORE

White House / Pete Souza

A Supreme Court Choice We Can Believe In

Imagine Eliot Spitzer without the baggage. Throw in an impeccable résumé and a knack for busting Wall Street and you’ve got the man Obama should nominate to the Supreme Court.

Posted on Apr 15, 2010 READ MORE

Let’s Have a Real Debate About the Court

A serious debate on “constitutional issues” might reveal our fundamental differences: Republican extremists would use the Supreme Court to prohibit every social and political advance since before the Civil War.

Posted on Apr 14, 2010 READ MORE

No Way to Treat a Senator

There is something weird going on in the Republican Party when Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn is the voice of reason. There is something dangerous going on in the Republican Party when he is vilified for it.

Posted on Apr 13, 2010 READ MORE

Supreme Court Obstruction

Posted on Apr 12, 2010 ENLARGE

Wikimedia Commons / Scrumshus

Senate Standoff on Unemployment Inches Toward Resolution

Four Republicans, including Scott Brown of Massachusetts, broke ranks Monday to help Democrats move an extension of unemployment benefits forward. The Dow may be over 11,000 again, but real unemployment is hovering around 17 percent, close to an all-time high.

Posted on Apr 12, 2010 READ MORE

Running Against Washington

Ohio’s U.S. Senate campaign offers an excellent preview of what this fall’s midterm elections will be like: Everyone in the race wants to be an outsider, everyone pledges to break with politics as usual, and everyone is talking about jobs.

Posted on Apr 11, 2010 READ MORE

Flickr user JenvanW (CC-BY)

Campaign Donors Prefer Democrats

It costs about $1.36 million to win a seat in the House of Representatives and about twice that in the Senate. Democrats are finding that when it comes to raising that kind of cash, it’s good to be in the majority.

Posted on Apr 5, 2010 READ MORE

Sunny Charlie Crist’s Rain Cloud

Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, now the underdog in a tough Senate primary, longs for a political world that seems to have vanished.

Posted on Mar 31, 2010 READ MORE

Let’s Leave This Voting Thing to the Socialists, OK?

Thousands of self-styled tea-baggers marched on the Capitol today to make the point that, in the words of one of their number, “Voting has no place in Congress.”

Posted on Mar 28, 2010 READ MORE

Official White House photo / Pete Souza

Obama Plays Rough at Recess

In alleged retaliation for Republican stonewalling, President Barack Obama will bypass the Senate and make recess appointments to 15 high-level administration jobs. For context, George W. Bush made more than 170 such appointments; Bill Clinton made nearly 140.

Posted on Mar 27, 2010 READ MORE

GOP senators
AP / Harry Hamburg

GOP Launches Final Health Care Attack in Senate

If you can’t beat ’em, hit ’em with a bunch of amendments they’d have a hard time opposing. That was apparently the strategy of Republicans hoping to throw a wrench into the health care reform works in the Senate on Wednesday.

Posted on Mar 24, 2010 READ MORE

White House / Pete Souza

Yes, They Made History

The passage of health care reform provided the first piece of incontestable evidence that Washington has changed.

Posted on Mar 22, 2010 READ MORE

Tea Party Bigotry Can’t Stop History

On Sunday, as comprehensive health care reform was becoming a reality, some people couldn’t bear what they saw.

Posted on Mar 22, 2010 READ MORE

Obama: ‘This Government Still Works’

The president, speaking after the passage of health care reform, said, “We proved that we are still a people capable of doing big things.”

Posted on Mar 21, 2010 WATCH & LISTEN

Boehner’s ‘Hell No’ Speech

The House minority leader got a bit hot and bothered just before the House vote approving the Senate’s version of health care reform, repeatedly dropping H-E-double hockey sticks. Speaker Nancy Pelosi spoke instead to history.

Posted on Mar 21, 2010 WATCH & LISTEN

‘Kumbaya’ No More

No matter what the Democrats attempt or how they go about it, Republicans are going to complain, obstruct and attack. It’s hard to fathom why that took so long to sink in.

Posted on Mar 19, 2010 READ MORE

Score One for Skepticism

Democrats are delighted with the Congressional Budget Office’s analysis of their health care bill, but the Republicans have good reason to be skeptical.

Posted on Mar 18, 2010 READ MORE

AP / George Osodi

Nigerian Leader to Assemble New Cabinet

Nigeria’s interim President Goodluck Jonathan will hopefully live up to his name after sacking his entire Cabinet on Wednesday. Given that he’s got less than a year before the next national election, Jonathan has to work fast to pick a new lineup, and many members may be familiar faces.

Posted on Mar 18, 2010 READ MORE

On Health Care, Listen to the Nuns

One of the tragedies of the viciously politicized battle over health care reform is the defection of the nation’s Roman Catholic bishops from a cause they have championed for decades. Thank God for the nuns.

Posted on Mar 17, 2010 READ MORE

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