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picture of newtown warehouse full of teddy bears

Newtown, CT warehouse courtesy of Danbury News-Times

Newtown, CT (where I live) has been overwhelmed by the generosity of strangers. We thank you, but don't send us any more teddy bears. If you want to consider helping, read about the teachers' web page in the Danbury News-Times:

"The idea is that the donations will directly impact the classrooms, so the teachers can decide on projects or special work they want to do and apply directly for funds to support them," Newtown Superintendent Janet Robinson said.

Robinson said state Education Commissioner Stefan Pryor "thought this was a great way to get resources to the teachers a way that is meaningful to our kids."

Another alternative is the Sandy Hook School Support Fund via United Way of Western CT. From the Litchfield County Times:
The town of Newtown has formed a transition team that will manage the fund based on the town’s needs.

According to a press release from the United Way, neither the UWWC nor the Newtown Savings Bank will take any percentage of the funds. The fund is designed to receive only general, undesignated contributions.

Both are legit, unlike this bottom feeder:
Federal authorities arrested a 37-year-old Bronx woman on Thursday after she allegedly concocted a ruse in the wake of the Connecticut mass shooting and posed as a relative of one of the slain children.

Nouel Alba is accused of using her Facebook account to solicit money from those wanting to donate to victims’ families, claiming that the money was to be used for a “funeral fund,” according to a U.S. Justice Department statement.

More opportunities, many of them very local, can be found here, in lieu of any material objects. Reading through it gives you a flavor of how many people are trying to help.

WaPo:

In the desperate search for motive where madness has prevailed, the Lanza case is more frustrating than most. For a young man who spent most of his waking hours at a computer, he appears to have left behind an astonishingly small online footprint — no Facebook page, no Twitter account.

The Connecticut State Police, assisted by the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, has poured everything it has into the Newtown shootings investigation, but “we don’t have any smoking gun to say this is why it occurred, at least not yet,” said Lt. J. Paul Vance, a department spokesman. “We are looking at several months before we really have our arms wrapped around this.”

Scott Clement:
The Newtown shootings two weeks ago sparked an intense reaction across the country, and public opinion polls captured major changes in the way the public interprets such events and how strict gun laws should be, but only minor shifts in support for specific policies. Here is a rundown of what public views changed, and what didn’t, after the shootings.

More interpret shooting as sign of broader problems

In a major reversal, over half of Americans saw the Newtown shooting as a reflection of broader societal problems, according to Washington Post-ABC News poll immediately after the attack. Only about a quarter of the public saw the July shootings in Aurora, Colo. as a sign of broader problems for society according to a Pew Research Center poll at the time, while two-thirds viewed it as the isolated act of a troubled individual. Likewise, nearly six in 10 saw the 2011 Tucson shooting that killed six as an isolated act.

Good round-up of public opinion from the Washington Post.

---

Jamelle Bouie:

"Both sides" don’t need to compromise. Rather, Republicans need to reconcile themselves to the fact that the public voted decisively against their policies, both in the presidential election and in congressional elections around the country, where Democrats won most open Senate seats and came away from House elections with a larger share of votes (which, due to redistricting and population movement, didn’t translate to a large gain in the chamber itself). The fiscal cliff shouldn’t be used to circumvent the clear preferences of the electorate.

This isn’t to say that Republicans have to give up their interests, but if compromise requires the White House to adopt GOP priorities, then it won’t happen — and more important — it shouldn’t. If Republicans want to strip down the social safety net and craft a low-tax, low-service environment, then the first step is to win elections.

Jonathan Capehart:
So, as we hurtle toward another dance with the debt ceiling, it is imperative that we keep two things in mind. First, raising the legal borrowing limit is not new spending. It’s money already spent by Congress. Second, the federal government will not have enough revenue to cover its obligations without borrowing. To not meet those obligations would make the United States a deadbeat.
BuzzFeed:  
Forget the Republican Party’s need to rebrand itself. Forget party elders' promises that they will start reaching out to minorities. And forget the supposed soul-searching that is meant to sweep over the GOP as it undergoes a serious reexamination of its future.

Right now, Republicans are having trouble even getting out of their own way.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Thanks for post and insomnia (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, Onomastic, judyms9, 417els

    This is a story that Must Not end... 'til another happens again-
    Including the aftermath and subsequent absurdities.

    Sadly, memories are short in a hyper market society.

  •  What Part? (12+ / 0-)

    Every part.

    Republicans must win because their thin veneer of self-esteem demands it. In the mind of a puffed up Republican or right wing fellow traveler, losing is for losers and they have come to the conclusion that they are never losers. That's why the opponent always cheats when they win. This is the logic of the childish buffoon who when losing a game knocks all the pieces onto the floor and declares himself the winner.

    The destruction of America and its economy is the reaction of a Republican Party that is incapable of thinking like anything other than a bloated ten year old loudmouth.

    This head movie makes my eyes rain.

    by The Lone Apple on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 04:42:30 AM PST

  •  You gotta love Republicans. (11+ / 0-)

    "When we win, we do things our way. When you win, we do things our way." They are truly, the Real Americans.  

    We're fools whether we dance or not, so we might as well dance.

    by PowWowPollock on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 04:47:10 AM PST

  •  Thanks for all the Newtown updates, (14+ / 0-)

    especially the ways to help.

    Easiest and probably most meaningful would be to the Sandy Hook School Support Fund -- text NEWTOWN to 80888 to send a $10.00 donation.

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 04:48:06 AM PST

  •  Michigan Repubs bumrush Handmaids Tale Agenda (18+ / 0-)

    through in Michigan

    Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder (R) signed into law new regulations for abortion clinics, reported Reuters, which Planned Parenthood claims threatens access to the procedure in the state.

    Clinics that provide more than 120 abortions annually will now have to be licensed freestanding surgical outpatient facilities.

    Synder argued, “This bill respects a woman’s right to choose while helping protect her health and safety, including making sure a pregnant person is not being coerced into a decision.”

    “This bill was meant to ban abortion in Michigan, and it was pushed through in a lame-duck session by legislators who were voted out of office because of their extreme views on women’s health,” said president of Planned Parenthood Action Fund, Cecile Richards, in a statement.

    When you ask "what part of losing does the GOP not get?" I have to ask "What makes you think they care - as in give a rat-fuck about - about 'losing" or public opinion or right or wrong?

    These are mean-spirited hate-filled dangerous assholes and we tolerate them at our peril. Why they can have this amount of clout while Dems couldn't issue a subpeona for a parking ticket is a mystery to me.

    The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men.

    by xxdr zombiexx on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 04:48:21 AM PST

    •  Kansas passed a similar bill (6+ / 0-)

      and Planned Parenthood took them to court and the judge threw the bill out.
      These guys are rushing through stuff because they lost their majority. Pricks (sorry, Greg).

      “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

      by skohayes on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 05:01:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  other states have already done (6+ / 0-)

      stealth bills de facto banning abortions, such as requiring providers to have local hospital privileges or requiring a waiting period between "counseling" and administering the Morning After Pill or requiring a physician has to administer both doses, requiring multiple trips to a clinic

      •  of course, AZ is one, also. (5+ / 0-)

        Physician's assistants used to do the procedure or give a pill. Now MDs must.  
        And the legislature has banned abortions after 18 weeks, defining gestational age as beginning at the start of the last menses.  It's called, get this, The Woman's Health and Safety Act.
        http://www.thedailybeast.com/...

        And last, in the grab bag of evil practices, a doctor doesn't have to tell you if you have a defective fetus, if they think you'll terminate the pregnancy.

        Right now, I have a friend with a fetus who has severe Turner's Syndrome.  My friend is on the state health insurance, and they won't terminate.  They are waiting for the fetus to die in utero, at which time they will do a D&C.

        I really hate it here.

        Research Shows Poverty Creates the Biggest Achievement Gap.

        by Desert Rose on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 05:46:36 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  absolutely horrifying story (5+ / 0-)

          but not surprising when lawmakers are willing to force a woman to risk sepsis and carry a moribund fetus to term.  Could she get to another state or does AZ MCD not pay for out of state services for its recipients (varies from state to state: during Lawton Chiles' tenure, FL was actually rather generous while NY only paid $1/day to docs for hospital care)

        •  From one who has Turners' Syndrome (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tb mare, Laconic Lib, gorgonza

          I think that 98% of Turners babies self-abort, so if they are sure it will, it's cruel to make her wait for it to die.  Turners' is a very frustrating disease to deal with even with a "lighter" case of it.  There are learning disabilities and the parents will have to deal constantly with an education system that doesn't want to deal with them to get the child the services they need even in the best of situations.   The child deals with social problems as well as learning problems.  A lot of Turners patients are unemployed or very underemployed because of the way they work and deal with situations, even though they have college degrees.  Then there is the need for good health care  and monitoring for the rest of the person's life, which is difficult if you are stuck in lower level jobs with no health care benefits.

  •  I've actually been watching Fox News (14+ / 0-)

    while here on vacation in Florida. Boy are they mad, they know Boehner is in trouble and will have to get Democratic votes to pass anything.
    I wonder if he values his speakership more than going over the fiscal cliff?

    “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

    by skohayes on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 04:50:07 AM PST

  •  The Republican ethic (12+ / 0-)
    As public policy, destroying the quality and morale of the federal workforce has been so obviously stupid it requires no elaboration here…. What does require constant reiteration as we survey all this wreckage is that from the perspective of the right this is not a disaster; this is a triumph.

    --Thomas Frank, The Wrecking Crew: How Conservatives Rule



    Denial is a drug.

    by Pluto on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 04:54:58 AM PST

  •  Like your title this morning (7+ / 0-)

    Glad at least one Op-Edder admits that it's the Rethugs that need to compromise, not the Dems. The one-sidedness of the "news" is so annoying.

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

    by Diana in NoVa on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 04:54:58 AM PST

  •  I think Boehner will be the scapegoat for the GOP (4+ / 0-)

    loss and the anger they feel.  Eric Cantor in in the on-deck-circle with the other vultures.  I'm going to miss Boehner, that hang dog look, that inability to get anything done, his constant tearful displays.  He was a very weak speaker.  The Tea Baggers controled him.  Enjoy some fishing in Ohio, Mr. Speaker, there is life afer Wahington, D.C., the capitol of the Federal Republic of Fiscal Dumbness, Discord, Poverty and Gun-Fear of the Government.

  •  The generosity of strangers (4+ / 0-)

    often amazes me, but then the rip-off artists brings me back to earth. I really hope that woman goes to jail, or at least the judge sentences her to stand in front of Newtown residents and explain herself.

    “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

    by skohayes on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 05:06:01 AM PST

  •  HP has a poll up where folks get to indicate (5+ / 0-)

    which various aspects of fiscal cuts now on the table such as vet benefits, ag supports, MC, MCD and such.  Noting which cuts are most likely to attract support, it appears home health should be on the chopping block in the new budget.

    This is very short sighted as most Americans will need home health care at some point in their lives as an alternative to institutionalization.  Also cutting home health is a false economy, as it shifts the payment source from federal MC to state MCD.  This was an old ploy of the Reaganauts, supposedly cutting taxes when all that is done is to shift cost from the federal to state and local governments.

    As we can view a discussion of many matters arising from this tragedy, from banning extended gun clips to mental health funding among others, it seems that we should also include home health as another element in the mental health funding discussion  

    •  Home health care can really cut hospital costs (6+ / 0-)

      as well as improve recovery for a lot of people PLUS it provides a lot of jobs.

      Also encourages auto sales.....

      Mental health funding was cut to the bone in the late 90
      s and has been on the chopping block every time the block is pulled out - and it seems to never be put away any more.

      How much more can be cut? Shit - I can't find resources to discharge my partial hospital clients to and there is pressure to discharge them to 'save money'.

      mental health has to be re-funded - more jobs as well as attending to America's neglected mental health services.

      The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men.

      by xxdr zombiexx on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 05:19:20 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  it has been that way at least since 1984 (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        xxdr zombiexx, tb mare, Laconic Lib

        when I began in healthcare.  However the placement of such pts has become increasingly difficult as various providers have abused the system, such as the old "swing bed" ploy by hospitals to get around DRGs.

        There is so much more we could do if certain practices were aggressively curbed  

        •  Capitalism hates rules. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tb mare, Laconic Lib

          Much of the community-based service for metal illness here in Ga is horrible. How Medicaid certifies these agencies - which appear to only have to meet documentation requirements for billling - is a mystery. I worked for a place that passed easily - I was helping them - but that place would never pay us correctly and on time twice in a row.

          With the mentally ill, now out of institutions and in shitty poersonal care homes with shitty community services, they are out of sight, out of mind and are being systematically exploited both by cahe home owners and payess, as well as being fraudulently billed for shitty services....

          yeah - regulation would be nice.

          The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men.

          by xxdr zombiexx on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 05:28:54 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  no argument from me; I remember a local (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            xxdr zombiexx, tb mare, Laconic Lib

            nursing home in 1985 who kept sending us workman comp cases which involved employees being bitten by rats (yep, not mice and it was the employees; imagine what the residents endured)

          •  In NC we got rid of any requirements about the (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Laconic Lib

            nature of patients who can be housed together (a very successful private nursing home lobby). As a result we have had multiple horrific killings of helpless elderly residents by violently mentally ill mental patients. So we keep infirm elderly residents in the same space as young (usually men) who have been found to be so mentally ill they can't live alone.  Some of them have been found to be too insane to stand trial for the violent assaults they've committed.  And that was before our Art Pope-funded-tea party government took over. Who knows what we have in store here now.

            "Speak the TRUTH, even if your voice shakes."

            by stellaluna on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 05:54:24 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  Went to New Haven from Fishkill yesterday (6+ / 0-)

    and driving back at night on I-84 went past the exit for Newton and Sandy Hook, off on my left on the side of the road was a big flag, a bunch of small flags and candle memorial....the mental image of those little kids being slaughtered crept back into my mind....I am of course fortunate that such an image enters my mind infrequently....I have no idea how the families and neighbors of those kids are managing to get through the minutes and hours that make up a day....we must do something about guns and violence in this country and we must do it now.

    •  yeah, the big flag went up on 9/11 (9+ / 0-)

      and the small ones just recently. The next exit after that is Sandy Hook and the flagpole in the center of town.

      Newtown has a lot a churches and a lot of flags. Makes the charge by hateful idiot Republicans like Huckabee that this is because there's no God in the schools incredibly ironic and not in a good way.

      PS that is not an optical illusion. The flagpole is in the center of the street.

      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

      by Greg Dworkin on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 05:27:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  It is so offensive that the right wing and the (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wintergreen8694, tb mare, 417els

        Republicans have co-opted God and patriotism when everything they do is the opposite of what a Christian and a patriot are supposed to do and believe. We should probably stop being dismissive of those two beliefs and start embracing them and point out how un-American and un-Christian these people are.

        "Speak the TRUTH, even if your voice shakes."

        by stellaluna on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:00:29 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Grew Up A Couple Of Towns South (3+ / 0-)

        Lot of that flagpole's mystique was that a drunk driver hits it every few years. Always loved how it just pops out of the middle of the double yellow lines. Wish that it was all that it stood for these days.

        •  the 18th century Meeting House (3+ / 0-)

          in the picture used to stand where the flagpole is. When it was moved off the road, the flagpole marked where it used to be (c. 1876).

          You can't move it because it's historic and has 'always' been there.

          Helpfully, there are signs on it that guide you to stay right.

          This piece was written by our town historian (a former teacher):

          Anyone who doubts this only has to review the furor which surrounded the recent attempt of the Department of Transportation to remove it from the intersection where it has stood for over 130 years. This pole has become a symbol of Newtown and has even found its way onto the seal emblazoned on the sides of our police cars. It has also become famous across the state. All directions for places in the center of Fairfield County begin "at the flagpole in the middle of the street" But why would any town put a 100 foot steel flagpole in the middle of one of the county's busiest intersections?

          Colonial New England had a penchant for putting large structures, such as meeting houses in the middle of their main streets. Newtown was no exception. From the time that it was first laid out in 1709 until 1792, the Congregational meeting house stood in the middle of the Church Hill Rd, West St., Main St. intersection, where the flagpole presently stands. In this position it dominated the village, which was fitting for the town's most important building. By being in the middle of the intersection, it was also located on town common land and therefore did not deprive one of the town's proprietors of a section of his house lot.

          Even after the building was moved in 1792 to make room for the new Episcopal church, the meeting house was only moved westward few yards to stand in the center of West Street where it continues today. The Episcopal church was then placed in the middle of Church Hill Road, directly across from the meeting house. There it too stood until 1870 when the new stone church was erected just to the south and the old wooden church was dismantled.

          A church in the middle of the street is understandably strange. A flag pole, on the other hand, does not appear to have the same justification for its intrusive placement in the middle of the town's major traffic flow. The reason for its placement has its origins in the very history of flag display. Although personal banners or flags had been used since the Middle Ages, national flags only begin to be used as the concept of the nation and the emotion of nationalism emerged in 18th century Europe. For the United States, the familiar stares and stripes was adopted in June of 1777 by the Continental Congress and was subsequently flown as a battle pennant. Public display of the flag developed slowly in the late 18th century but became a virtual passion in the 19th century, as American nationalism grew and developed into the patriotism of the early 20th century. In this 19th century atmosphere, public display of the flag demanded the most prominent place in the town, and for Newtown the intersection at the center of the village is such a spot.

          "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

          by Greg Dworkin on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:14:22 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Had a home in Lakeville for a lucky few years. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Greg Dworkin, singe

        Was able to leave Florida for five months every year and bask in the community of the "northwest corner."
        Those were the happiest times of my life and they ended in the recession of 2008.....

        If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. John F. Kennedy ( inaugural address, January 20, 1961)

        by Outraged Mom on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:48:54 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks for the link (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes, hulibow

    To Donors Choose. I am a Connecticut resident and my employer has wanted to find a meaningful way to help the school system. This is it.

    •  Donor's Choose (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hulibow

      is a wonderful charity for donors and recipients. HIGHLY receommended!

      “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

      by skohayes on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 05:14:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  anytime you think "no, no one could possibly (0+ / 0-)

    sink any lower."

    Both are legit, unlike this bottom feeder:
    be assured, someone will rise (or drop, as the case may be) to the challenge, as ms. alba is alleged to have done. don't believe for a moment she's the only one to have done so either, she's just the only one caught so far.
    •  speaking of bottom feeders wait til the pols arriv (0+ / 0-)

      looking for a photo op.  Remember all the photos of various pols with 9/11 first responders and victims' families?

      •  the pols who have been here (0+ / 0-)

        especially Malloy and Obama buit also Chris Murphy and Dick Blumenthal, came to talk to the families and attend funerals. I think Malloy, not only informed the families, he attended most all of the funerals.

        They earned their photo ops. They are most welcome.

        "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

        by Greg Dworkin on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:00:46 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  TOTALLY CLASSIC: Thanks for Again Proving (0+ / 0-)

    what some "progressives" here are ALL about: winning and losing-- in regard to the most recent election, that is-- the "shellacking" the dems experienced in 2010 doesn't matter now (even though we're now stuck with anti union Frankenstein monsters like Gov. Walker, Snyder, etc., etc.).

    And thanks again for proving many don't get politics, don't get the long term agenda of the wealthy class and their obvious lackey servants in congress (repugs and dems both), i.e. the notion that because the GOP lost one election, they now "need" to do this or that-- basically roll over and now realize the democrats are the alpha wolf now, the "democrats" are now in charge.

    GIMME A BREAK.

    "A civilization which does not provide young people with a way to earn a living is pretty poor". Eleanor Roosevelt

    by Superpole on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 05:48:02 AM PST

    •  good morning (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TRPChicago

      Do you shake your fist at clouds?

      Just curious.

      Now you could, if you wish, take everything out of context and rant about The Human Condition. Or, you could, like most people, take the posts and links in the context of fiscal cliff discussions, and realize this is a political site and we like discussing politics with our coffee in the morning. And the afternoon and evening.

      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

      by Greg Dworkin on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 05:55:45 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I tend to scream, preferably into the night (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Greg Dworkin

        as some situations defy all reasonable understanding and all possible explanation so that such a reaction is only human

        •  I suppose (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          belle1

          I don't have much patience for "I am so much more progressive than thou".  Guess it's because I'm a child of the 60's and saw where SDS, Weather Underground and others went with that.

          "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

          by Greg Dworkin on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:06:08 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I was also there and also saw where some (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Greg Dworkin

            of the political activity went and also saw the good other activity achieved.  I was even involved in a small way in some small things; as a grandfather, I am disappointed that we did not achieve more in those halcyon days  and think perhaps I should have worked harder, worked longer, and worked smarter than I did

          •  HUGE Red Herring.. Weak (0+ / 0-)

            LOL!!

            More proof of progressive impotence-- when faced with inconvenient truths, your response is to totally swing from one extreme to the other:

            From: In denial progressives supporting a political party which is not all that progressive-- to ancient, irrelevant extremist groups who broke the law to make their point(s).

            HUH? there's NO middle ground? You realize you're digging yourself into a deeper hole, right?

            Gimme a break, please.

            "A civilization which does not provide young people with a way to earn a living is pretty poor". Eleanor Roosevelt

            by Superpole on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:26:17 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  "Sorry" for Inconvenient Truths (0+ / 0-)
        Do you shake your fist at clouds?
        This proves another pathetic point: Sort of like clouds in the sky, the current political situation is BEYOND our control, beyond improvement, so we should just "accept things as they are".

        Weak.

        "A civilization which does not provide young people with a way to earn a living is pretty poor". Eleanor Roosevelt

        by Superpole on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:19:05 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  hey, your comments are most welcome (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          belle1

          and mostly true.

          Things are never as they should be. That's why we are activists.

          But yelling at the choir won't make us sing any sweeter. That's an inconvenient truth you've never grasped in all your long history here. ;-)

          But you are welcome anyway, because your heart's in the right place.

          "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

          by Greg Dworkin on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:22:34 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Most Republicans who won in 2012 learned zip. (0+ / 0-)

    Their districts or states sent them to DC to do what they have been trying so hard to do since 2010:

    -  Cut taxes - all taxes, thereby putting more money in people's pockets and starving government.
    -  Hold the line on spending and reduce domestic spending at every turn. Repeat: that is every turn. Particularly, this means anything called an "entitlement program."
    -  Correlatively and necessarily, that means no debt ceiling increases, zero increase in all domestic budgets and a decrease in many.
    -  Freedom from regulation generally. It is bureaucratic, costly, sometimes punitive and almost always counter-productive (in every sense of the word).
    -  As an overall economic philosophy, keep government's hands off our free enterprise system.

    Yes of course, that's over simple. But I think that is roughly the level of the sloganeering-that-passes-for-thinking that seems commonplace in constituent gatherings (when they have them), local media coverage in bright red districts, conservative blogivating, talk radio and floor speeches by the statesmen of the Tea Party. And, sad to say, the living rooms of Republicans who do think more deeply about the roles of government and politics ... and should know better.

    As for:

    -  The silly (i.e. Michele Bachmann's Light Bulb Freedom Act),
           it's laughable but the bill made a serious point.
    -  The hypocritical (against women's freedom to choose),
           the issue is human life; the choice to kill it is not Mom's to make.
    -  The economically inane (we must not send money to China),
           yes, that's what we're saying: reduce borrowing.
    -  The economically disastrous (holding the debt ceiling hostage),
           we use every lever in our tool kit; so do you liberals.
    -  The mean-spirited (when hurricane relief costs go up in one area, beggar another),
           there must be a limit; no more blank checks.
    -  The disingenuous (many of these areas are "taker" states, not givers to the Federal coffers),
           yup, it's like taking tax breaks; if it's there, it's dumb not to take it.
    -  Etc.,
           etc.

    Conservatives who want to believe these things send to Congress people who say they will practice these things. To voters in these states and districts, Washington is broken, all right, but "broken" means we Democrats continue to get away with taxing and spending.

    Until we figure out how to frame messages that change these paradigms - the realities these folks are sure they know - we can hardly expect legislators elected from their territories to be flexible enough to compromise. It's not stupidity or venality or zombies, it's what gets 'em elected. And re-elected.

    2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

    by TRPChicago on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:04:51 AM PST

  •  Keeping hands off the free enterprise system? (0+ / 0-)

    I believe that system has been offshored for quite a while now.  Labor is unable to participate in this system any longer.  
    Thumbs up to the longshoremen.  Obama, do not intrude.

    Building a better America with activism, cooperation, ingenuity and snacks.

    by judyms9 on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:09:02 AM PST

  •  d'uh - loners don't use "social" media (0+ / 0-)
    [Lanza] appears to have left behind an astonishingly small online footprint — no Facebook page, no Twitter account.
    why would anyone be "astonished" that someone with poor social skills doesn't use social media. lanza was probably a lurker, who disabled cookies and didn't interact much online, just like it seems that he didn't in real life.

    in a way, it reminds me of when an LA radio station interviewed fatboy slim, who spends all day working on computers. the DJ asked him what he thought of MP3 songs, and his response was that he hadn't heard their music so he couldn't say. in other words, the DJ assumed that since fatboy slim makes music on computers, he would be familiar with a music format common among internet-shared music (but, it turns out, not used by music producers).

    freedom isn't free, but it isn't dumb either.

    by astro on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:22:08 AM PST

  •  Thank you Jamelle Bouie!~ (0+ / 0-)

    It needs to be said, over and over  - Republicans: YOU LOST!
    Win elections first, then talk about someone adopting your policies

    "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

    by eXtina on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:23:25 AM PST

  •  omg (0+ / 0-)

    greg dworkin, you live in Newtown? I thought I might have read that before then it looked like it was the words of the columnist. Will you write about how this has affected you and your town?

    "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

    by eXtina on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 06:24:20 AM PST

  •  Seems the STORE AT DKOS is busted. (0+ / 0-)

    Half-busted anyway.

    The STORE for Daily Kos sells only tee-shirts and a water bottle. No hoodies, no sweats, no watch cap. Nothing near the typical array of goodies you'll see for the other online stores. No Girl's Stuff, no posters, no art, no bags. No section for imports.

    No patches, no keychains, no skate decks.
    No jewelry. No pins.  

    -- Blue Collar Distro

    The Dennis Leary "MERRY 'UCKIN' CHRISTMAS" coffee cups at the site are selling gangbusters !!

    Denis Leary: Merry F**in' Christmas Color Changing Mug

    NO F/*in' COFFEE CUPS at all for Daily Kos supporters.

    Shirts in a variety of colors can be manufactured after orders are placed. Basic colors and seven sizes are available from the web site:

    Printed on American Apparel t-shirts.

    The actual "Men/Unisex" sizes available and the chest widths in inches are as follows:

    XS (16-17)
    S (17-18)
    M (19-20)
    L (21-22)
    XL (23-24)
    2XL (25-26)
    3XL (27-28)

    Note: the XS extra-small and 3XL size tee-shirts are never made available for DKOS purchasers.

    The sizes posted in the DKOS listings are screwed up. Let's do some quality control. Here is the sizing/availability by shirt type:

    Flag Man (Cranberry) Girls T-Shirt
    (no small)
    (no medium)
    (no large)
    Extra-Large
    (no 2x-large)

    Build CommUNITY (Black) Girls T-Shirt
    (no small)
    (no medium)
    Large
    Extra-Large
    2X-Large

    Tom Tomorrow (Black) Unisex T-Shirt
    (no small)
    (no medium)
    (no large)
    (no extra-large)
    2X-Large

    Netroots Nation Flag (Black) Unisex T-Shirt
    Small
    Medium
    Large
    Extra-Large
    2X-Large
    Out of Stock
    "This item is currently sold out :("

    Flag Man (Cranberry) Unisex T-Shirt
    Small
    Medium
    Large
    Extra-Large
    2X-Large
    Out of Stock
    "This item is currently sold out :("

    And it also has a "ships in 2 weeks" tag mixed in with the sizing selection list.

    Daily Kos: I Build CommUNITY (Black) Unisex T-Shirt
    Small
    (no medium)
    Large
    Extra-Large
    2X-Large
    In Stock

    Orange Dog Democrat (Black) Unisex T-Shirt
    Small
    Medium
    Large
    Extra-Large
    2X-Large
    Out of Stock
    This item is currently sold out :(

    Petrolcide (Black) Unisex T-Shirt
    Small
    Medium
    Large
    (no extra-large)
    (no 2x-large)
    In stock

    Flag Man (Natural) Unisex T-Shirt $15
    Small
    (no medium)
    (no large)
    (no extra-large)
    (no 2x-large)
    In Stock

    Obviously the tee-shirts can be silkscreened or transferred onto any base size that is large enough to fit your pattern. You get the order, you make the shirt, you send it out.

    No eye patch. The real creative crime here is that nobody has gotten around to doing a suitable portrait/caricature of Meteor Blades. By a country mile MB's the coolest guy going at this shindig -- our "Johnny Cash" figure. Our own in-house frappin' pirate !! And there's nothing....

    Tell me I wouldn't do 5,000 items a year at the web site and turn a minimum of $10,000 for Daily Kos with a Meteor Blades line of items ??? The guy's a f**in' classic !

    Please God, fix this web store! Put somebody on it who wants to sell merchandise to the masses. Generate decent cash flow in the process.

    This criticism is rooted in experience. We built 380 B2C web sites in the Y2K/postY2K period with first-rate presentation, standardized database support, and profitability for every single one of them. If anything, support for web sites has become simpler to operate with the newer out-of-the-box retail support sites. There's a hundred of these sites that automate provisioning and use your logos or designs on their base items.

    "We have done nothing to be ashamed of. We have nothing to apologize for." NRA 12/14/2012

    by bontemps2012 on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 09:01:22 AM PST

  •  Something in the Roundup (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Greg Dworkin, belle1

    Sparked a memory. There's a book by Spider Robinson: Callahan's Crosstime Saloon. The first story, "The Guy With the Eyes", contains a monologue by a teenage heroin addict (Tommy Janssen) that struck me when I read it close to 25 years ago and still moves me now. The book is in a box in Alabama (where we fled during and after Katrina), so I can't provide the direct quote, but if memory serves me, it's the most succinct summary of "the problems of today's youth" you can find anywhere.

    I just bought the e-book just to find the quote:

    he yelled. "Jesus, where do I start? There was this war they wanted me to go and fight, see? And there's this place called college, I mean they want you to care, dig it, care about this education trip, and they don't care enough themselves to make it as attractive as the crap game across the street. There's this air I hear is unfit to breathe, and water that ain't fit to drink, and food that wouldn't nourish a vulture and a grand outlook for the future. You can't get to a job without the car you couldn't afford to run even if you were working, and if you found a job it'd pay five dollars less than the rent. The T. V . advertises karate classes for four-year-olds and up, the President's New Clothes didn't wear very well, the next depression's around the corner and you ask me what in the name of God I'm running from?
    ...
    And no one had an answer for the Janssen boy. I could see, all around the room, men who had learned to listen,  men who had learned to empathize, to want to understand and share the pain of another. And no one had a word to say. They were thinking past the blurted words of a haunted boy, wondering if this crazy world of confusion might not after all be one holy hell of a place to grow up. (bolding mine) Most of them already had reason to know damn well that society never forgives the sinner, but they were realizing to their dismay how thin and uncomforting the straight and narrow has become these last few years.
      Sure, they'd heard these things before, often enough to make them into clichés. But now I could see the boys reflecting that these were the clichés that made a young man say he liked to feel dead, and the same thought was mirrored on the face of each of them: My God, when did we let these things become clichés? The Problems of Today's Youth were no longer a Sunday supplement or a news broadcast or anything so remote and intangible, they were suddenly become a dirty, shivering boy who told us that in this world we had built for him with our sweat and our blood he was not only tired of living, but so unscared of dying that he did it daily, sometimes, for recreation.
    If this is beyond fair use, I apologize to Spider Robinson, with the plea that his words are still relevant and that I paid twice for the book.

    It has become nearly impossible to have an all-inclusive, serious conversation about the things that really matter with mega-media (and internet trolls) paid to sow confusion, distraction and discord and greedy, evil bastards paying them to do it. Yet, we need to have that conversation on the most basic level. /end rant

    •  I remember that book! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lindy

      centipede's dilemma, just dessert... great stories

      "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

      by Greg Dworkin on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 09:25:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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