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There are a number of downer "this day in history" items, but I'll endeavor to make up for it in a bit. On July 29, 1981, Britain's Prince Charles married Lady Diana Spencer at St. Paul's Cathedral in London. We all remember how THAT turned out, yes? Ugh... On this date in 1890, Vincent van Gogh died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in Auvers, France, at age 37. And, finally, the "warm & fuzzy" Benito Mussolini was born on this date in 1883. He did not meet the most dignified end, if y'all know your history!

Let's lighten things up!

Ken Burns is 56 today! His documentary work cannot be praised enough.

And, we get another "house call" from our favorite Doc tonight; let's Countdown with Dr. & Gov. Howard Dean! :D

#5 "Compromised Care" AKA "Medi Scare" - There are fears that a health care reform bill out of the Senate Finance Committee will somehow reduce SCHIP to make the GOP happy. Y’all remember SCHIP, yes? That’s the health insurance program for kids that GWB & his Congress critters didn’t like, and the one where staff for Senator Mitch McConnell released the private information of a boy & his family who were fighting for the program, then they received death threats. The House end of the Capitol seem to be working & playing well with each other resulting in the news made today about the climate bill & the health care reform bill. And, how’s the Senate coming along? Well...not so good... Maybe limiting their terms to just 2 years like their colleagues in the House would light a fire under their arse to play nice. Holy crap, more Americans now disapprove than approve how President Obama is handling health care reform. I take a little comfort in the fact that one of the poll’s "sponsors" was the Pirate Murdoch WSJ. Ah yes, the devil is truly in the details. So, did anyone try to go grocery shopping in that Kroger today while President Obama was there? Some angry Virginian probably didn’t get their Cheese Wiz! The GOP has such the reptile brain – appeal to people’s fears to get them to cower to their desires. Can y’all see GWB speechifying in a Kroger? Yea for Senator Sherrod Brown! He’s happy with what came out of the HELP Committee; he’s less – than – amused with the Finance Committee’s work up to this point. So, is Senator Brown too classy of a guy to rip Senator Baucus a new one? It would appear the bill that came out of the HELP Committee addressed the needs of small businesses. OK, Senator Brown is officially too classy of a guy; I could give a tinker’s damn if any GOP Congress critters vote for or (most likely) against MEANINGFUL health care reform. That result will just prove once and for all that all they care about is their sorry political arses. Harry Reid may have to sort this all out?! Holy heaven, help us all... WHOA! Howard Dean called out the media! HA!!

#4 "Hypocrisy on Parade" AKA "Run – RNC" AKA "GOP and Mammon" - Gov. Dean’s opening salvo for this segment is absolutely worth a repeat; it is a short, sweet, BRILLIANT summation of "the party of no":

First, Bush Republicans broke the economy. Then, Bush Republicans opposed fixing it. Then, Bush Republicans blamed Mr. Obama for not fixing it quickly enough.

LOVE IT!  Ugh...check out THAT foursome – Mitch McConnell, "Small Price to Pay" Boehner, Jon Kyle, & Erik Cantor...It’s a gruesome twosome times 2 – AUGH! That DNC ad was pretty damn good. Uh – oh! The GOP won’t be happy with what the Fed said today; 12 regions of the economy have stabilized, or the pace of decline has leveled off. The only chance the GOP has for 2010 is for there to be apple lines in America’s streets again, and Wall Street execs pitching themselves out of windows again. The RNC is apparently having a "getting to know you" session with Gov. Tim Pawlenty in San Diego. Uh...why San Diego? The RNC should’ve wanted to see the Governor at work & maybe get a visit from MN’s SENATOR Al Franken – suck on it, BillO! ;D

#3 "Message in the Medium" - I can understand & appreciate television shows & movies not sheltering itself from the economic upheavals over the past couple of years. But, every once in awhile, I want to watch something TO BE ENTERTAINED; sometimes, thinking is over – rated. Yea for South Park & The Simpsons! Romance novels are enjoying their best year ever?! Aw hell, no wonder FAUX News, Glenn Beck, BillO, et al. still have jobs. Ugh...

#2 "Breaking the Banksters" AKA "Risky Business" AKA "CEO Salaries: Are They High?" - Rep. Barney Frank’s committee sent a bill to the full House demanding that bank execs NOT BE HANDSOMLY FINANCIALLY REWARDED for risky practices. What a novel concept...not rewarding failure... Ya’ think that concept will catch on? Nope, me, neither... I appreciate Arianna Huffington’s opinions – especially coming from an ex – rabid GOPer. But, hindsight is always 20/20. She mentioned the necessity for "strings attached" to the bailout. Yes, there should’ve been strings attached, but when you have people in the financial industry who are SUPPOSED to know what they’re talking about (a dangerous assumption) telling Congress critters who probably, in actuality, know exactly jack $hit about how the financial world REALLY works that our nation’s economy is mere hours away from total collapse, then said Congress critters, if for any reason in addition to keeping their cushy DC jobs, will grasp at ANYTHING the "financial experts" tell them to do. Once again, just like in the health care reform debate, it’s all about the politics, and it’s all about the coin. YES! Bring back some form of Glass – Stiegel; let’s use some Dem majority spine for THAT legislation!

** "Obama Family Vacation" - President Obama & the family may be going to Martha’s Vineyard for summer vacation. How much vacation time had GWB taken up to this point in his presidency? Hope they eat some great seafood! **

#1 "Diplomacy on Tap" AKA "Fermenting Peace" - During my bartending gig the summer before my senior year in college, I poured many a beer & opened many a beer can. How come I didn’t get invited to tend bar during this meeting tomorrow?! ;D Sgt. James Crowley & Professor Gates are joining President Obama for a "kegger" at the White House. The woman who made the initial 911 call, Lucille Whalen, is finally speaking. Wow, after what she said today, can you blame her for keeping quiet? She was being a good neighbor reporting suspicious activity at a house, and she apparently got crucified & threatened for it. I’m tired of hearing Glenn Beck’s spewage. I’m tired of Boss Limbaugh’s spewage, too. Hello to Eugene Robinson! Did y’all hear Howard Dean’s story about his 2 African – American college roommates back in 1968? I’m glad they’re still friends! I loved what Mr. Robinson had to say about tomorrow’s meeting; I usually do. But, do y’all think there would even be a meeting between these 2 gentlemen at the White House had this event occurred under a President McCentury administration or any other white guy? Sadly, I must say no; this meeting would not happen with a Caucasian POTUS.

Originally posted to CityLightsLover on Wed Jul 29, 2009 at 06:41 PM PDT.

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