Skip to main content

He scares some Republicans too... "@TheFix: Rand Paul says he scares Democrats. Should he? http://t.co/...
@ananavarro
One of the dumbest themes from the press in years is this idea that Obama plays too much golf. Presidents never have a day off, but maybe the press should take one themselves.

Kevin Drum:

And foreign policy is hard—especially now. Almost nobody gets even a small fraction of what they want out of it.

That said, the relentless criticism of Obama's approach toward ISIS strikes me as unusually shortsighted. As near as I can tell, he's handled it almost perfectly so far. If we had offered air support to destroy ISIS six months or a year ago, it probably would have made things worse. Iraq flatly wasn't able to provide the ground troops to complement an air campaign, and America would have shared in the inevitable fiasco. We also would have been explicitly bound to Nouri al-Maliki and his policies, which were the very ones responsible for the rise of ISIS in the first place. The outcome of all this would have been the worst of all possible worlds for American interests.

NY Times:
The United States has begun to mobilize a broad coalition of allies behind potential American military action in Syria and is moving toward expanded airstrikes in northern Iraq, administration officials said on Tuesday.

President Obama, the officials said, was broadening his campaign against the Sunni militants of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria and nearing a decision to authorize airstrikes and airdrops of food and water around the northern Iraqi town of Amerli, home to members of Iraq’s Turkmen minority. The town of 12,000 has been under siege for more than two months by the militants.

“Rooting out a cancer like ISIL won’t be easy and it won’t be quick,” Mr. Obama said in a speech on Tuesday to the American Legion in Charlotte, N.C., using an alternative name for ISIS. He said the United States was building a coalition to “take the fight to these barbaric terrorists,” and that the militants would be “no match” for a united international community.

Picking and choosing his spots is exactly what you want from a president. On the other hand, trigger happy Republicans caused this problem in the first place by invading Iraq. Don't pay any attention to them when they whine about a gazillion things they think should be done now, none of them right.

More politics and policy below the fold.

Zack Beauchamp sets the record straight:

While you may have heard that American inaction since its withdrawal from Iraq has been important in helping ISIS, that pales in comparison to the contribution of the invasion itself. A residual American force in Iraq may have been able to help blunt ISIS' Iraqi offensive in June 2014, and US bombing of ISIS targets in Syria might have weakened the group somewhat. But the predominant causes of ISIS's rise in the two countries — internal Iraqi politics and the Syrian civil war itself — couldn't be solved through American military action.
Zack Beauchamp again:
ISIS is awful. Allying with Assad to fight it would be worse.
NY Times:
After 50 days of fighting that took some 2,200 lives, leveled large areas of the Gaza Strip and paralyzed Israel’s south for the summer, Israeli and Palestinian leaders reached an open-ended cease-fire agreement on Tuesday that promised only limited change to conditions in Gaza and left unresolved the broader issues underpinning the conflict.

Hamas, the militant Islamist faction that dominates Gaza, declared victory even though it had abandoned most of its demands, ultimately accepting an Egyptian-brokered deal that differs little from one proffered on the battle’s seventh day. In effect, the deal put both sides back where they were at the end of eight days of fighting in 2012, with terms that called for easing but not lifting Israeli restrictions on travel, trade and fishing in Gaza.

NY Times:
President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia held inconclusive talks late Tuesday with the president of Ukraine, extending a reluctant hand to a new leadership vilified in Russia’s state-run news media as the fruit of a fascist putsch. Hours earlier, Ukraine released videos of captured Russian soldiers that directly challenged Mr. Putin’s longstanding claim that his country has nothing to do with the conflict in eastern Ukraine.
Gee, reading these stories you might think the world is having a better week compared to last.

Must read of the day is David Frum on what's really driving GOP policy:

Boomers’ conservatism is founded on their apprehension that there’s not enough to go around -- and on their conviction that what little resources there are should accrue to them. Over the first Obama term, polls recorded a big jump in the proportion of those 50 and older expressing concern about “government becoming too involved in healthcare”: eight points among those 65 and older and 16 points among those between 50 and 64. It might seem paradoxical that people on Medicare, or soon to qualify for it, would oppose a further expansion of the government’s role in health care, but it actually makes perfect sense: boomer conservatives fear that government in the age of Obama will serve somebody else’s interests at the expense of their own.

Republicans have responded to boomers’ fears by reinventing themselves as defenders of the fiscal status quo for older Americans -- and only older Americans. In 2005, Bush proposed bold reforms to Social Security, including privatization. But since 2008, the GOP has rejected changes to retirement programs that might in any way impinge on current beneficiaries. The various budget plans Republicans produced in the run-up to the 2012 election all exempted Americans over age 55 from any changes to either Social Security or Medicare.

Just a reminder that Republicans are just as unserious about domestic policy as they are on foreign policy.
A very polite rebuke of pretty much every Ryan budget. http://t.co/... http://t.co/...
@SimonMaloy
Editorial Board, NY Times:
More than four years ago, while announcing his campaign for governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo stood in front of the Tweed Courthouse in downtown Manhattan and said Albany’s antics “could make Boss Tweed blush.”

New York had had enough corruption, he said, and he was going to put a stop to it. “Job 1 is going to be to clean up Albany,” he said, “and make the government work for the people.”

Mr. Cuomo became governor on that platform and recorded several impressive achievements, but he failed to perform Job 1. The state government remains as subservient to big money as ever, and Mr. Cuomo resisted and even shut down opportunities to fix it. Because he broke his most important promise, we have decided not to make an endorsement for the Democratic primary on Sept. 9.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Thanks Greg nt (36+ / 0-)

    I voted Tuesday, May 6, 2014 because it is my right, my responsibility and because my parents moved from Alabama to Ohio to vote. Unfortunately, the republicons want to turn Ohio into Alabama.

    by a2nite on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 04:13:49 AM PDT

  •  Thanks, Obama. (52+ / 0-)

    No, really, I mean it.

    Can anyone imagine the damage that a President McCain or [shudder] Palin or Romney would have inflicted on America and the world under these circumstances?

    Citing the Bible as proof of God is like citing comic books to prove the existence of Superman. (h/t to Stevie Ray Fromstein @ TheHolyAtheist.com)

    by rdbaker43 on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 04:21:39 AM PDT

    •  I don't allow myself... (7+ / 0-)

      to 'go there'...
      The thought is too horrendous.

      "These 'Yet To Be' United States" --James Baldwin-- -6.75, -5.78

      by kevinbr38 on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 04:32:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  But he's playing too much golf. (3+ / 0-)

      The press sure didn't comment on all those brush clearing vacays Shrub took, even up to 9/11 and aferwards during Katrina, so they can drink their six-packs of STFU and lay off President Obama.

      He might not get much done, but at least he presents the persona of actually being a working POTUS, which is very welcome after watching Bush 'Play" at being POTUS for eight years and drove the country off the cliff.

      "Washington, DC: Where Corruption is Rewarded, and Ethical Merit is DESPISED.

      by The Truth on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 05:46:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Quite a big caveat there... (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        skohayes, a2nite, Stude Dude, TerryDarc, askew
        He might not get much done
        What makes this comment any better than the press grousing that he plays too much golf?

        No matter what he does, it's never enough.  Never.
         

        "It ain't right, Atticus," said Jem. "No, son, it ain't right." --Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

        by SottoVoce on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 05:55:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No accomplishments? Easily refudiated here (9+ / 0-)
          1. Passed Health Care Reform: After five presidents over a century failed to create universal health insurance, signed the Affordable Care Act (2010). It will cover 32 million uninsured Americans beginning in 2014 and mandates a suite of experimental measures to cut health care cost growth, the number one cause of America’s long-term fiscal problems.

          2. Passed the Stimulus: Signed $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in 2009 to spur economic growth amid greatest recession since the Great Depression. Weeks after stimulus went into effect, unemployment claims began to subside. Twelve months later, the private sector began producing more jobs than it was losing, and it has continued to do so for twenty-three straight months, creating a total of nearly 3.7 million new private-sector jobs.

          3. Passed Wall Street Reform: Signed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (2010) to re-regulate the financial sector after its practices caused the Great Recession. The new law tightens capital requirements on large banks and other financial institutions, requires derivatives to be sold on clearinghouses and exchanges, mandates that large banks provide “living wills” to avoid chaotic bankruptcies, limits their ability to trade with customers’ money for their own profit, and creates the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (now headed by Richard Cordray) to crack down on abusive lending products and companies.

          4. Ended the War in Iraq: Ordered all U.S. military forces out of the country. Last troops left on December 18, 2011.

          5. Began Drawdown of War in Afghanistan: From a peak of 101,000 troops in June 2011, U.S. forces are now down to 91,000, with 23,000 slated to leave by the end of summer 2012. According to Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, the combat mission there will be over by next year.

          6. Eliminated Osama bin laden: In 2011, ordered special forces raid of secret compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, in which the terrorist leader was killed and a trove of al-Qaeda documents was discovered.

          7. Turned Around U.S. Auto Industry: In 2009, injected $62 billion in federal money (on top of $13.4 billion in loans from the Bush administration) into ailing GM and Chrysler in return for equity stakes and agreements for massive restructuring. Since bottoming out in 2009, the auto industry has added more than 100,000 jobs. In 2011, the Big Three automakers all gained market share for the first time in two decades. The government expects to lose $16 billion of its investment, less if the price of the GM stock it still owns increases.

          8. Recapitalized Banks: In the midst of financial crisis, approved controversial Treasury Department plan to lure private capital into the country’s largest banks via “stress tests” of their balance sheets and a public-private fund to buy their “toxic” assets. Got banks back on their feet at essentially zero cost to the government.

          9. Repealed “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”: Ended 1990s-era restriction and formalized new policy allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military for the first time.

          10. Toppled Moammar Gaddafi: In March 2011, joined a coalition of European and Arab governments in military action, including air power and naval blockade, against Gaddafi regime to defend Libyan civilians and support rebel troops. Gaddafi’s forty-two-year rule ended when the dictator was overthrown and killed by rebels on October 20, 2011. No American lives were lost.

          It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn't get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before... Richard P. Feynman

          by TerryDarc on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 07:25:10 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  And 11-20 (5+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            aimeehs, rdbaker43, askew, SottoVoce, thomask
            11. Told Mubarak to Go: On February 1, 2011, publicly called on Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to accept reform or step down, thus weakening the dictator’s position and putting America on the right side of the Arab Spring. Mubarak ended thirty-year rule when overthrown on February 11.

            12. Reversed Bush Torture Policies: Two days after taking office, nullified Bush-era rulings that had allowed detainees in U.S. custody to undergo certain “enhanced” interrogation techniques considered inhumane under the Geneva Conventions. Also released the secret Bush legal rulings supporting the use of these techniques.

            13. Improved America’s Image Abroad: With new policies, diplomacy, and rhetoric, reversed a sharp decline in world opinion toward the U.S. (and the corresponding loss of “soft power”) during the Bush years. From 2008 to 2011, favorable opinion toward the United States rose in ten of fifteen countries surveyed by the Pew Global Attitudes Project, with an average increase of 26 percent.

            14. Kicked Banks Out of Federal Student Loan Program, Expanded Pell Grant Spending: As part of the 2010 health care reform bill, signed measure ending the wasteful decades-old practice of subsidizing banks to provide college loans. Starting July 2010 all students began getting their federal student loans directly from the federal government. Treasury will save $67 billion over ten years, $36 billion of which will go to expanding Pell Grants to lower-income students.

            15. Created Race to the Top: With funds from stimulus, started $4.35 billion program of competitive grants to encourage and reward states for education reform.

            16. Boosted Fuel Efficiency Standards: Released new fuel efficiency standards in 2011 that will nearly double the fuel economy for cars and trucks by 2025.

            17. Coordinated International Response to Financial Crisis: To keep world economy out of recession in 2009 and 2010, helped secure from G-20 nations more than $500 billion for the IMF to provide lines of credit and other support to emerging market countries, which kept them liquid and avoided crises with their currencies.

            18. Passed Mini Stimuli: To help families hurt by the recession and spur the economy as stimulus spending declined, signed series of measures (July 22, 2010; December 17, 2010; December 23, 2011) to extend unemployment insurance and cut payroll taxes.

            19. Began Asia “Pivot”: In 2011, reoriented American military and diplomatic priorities and focus from the Middle East and Europe to the Asian-Pacific region. Executed multipronged strategy of positively engaging China while reasserting U.S. leadership in the region by increasing American military presence and crafting new commercial, diplomatic, and military alliances with neighboring countries made uncomfortable by recent Chinese behavior.

            20. Increased Support for Veterans: With so many soldiers coming home from Iraq and Iran with serious physical and mental health problems, yet facing long waits for services, increased 2010 Department of Veterans Affairs budget by 16 percent and 2011 budget by 10 percent. Also signed new GI bill offering $78 billion in tuition assistance over a decade, and provided multiple tax credits to encourage businesses to hire veterans.

            It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn't get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before... Richard P. Feynman

            by TerryDarc on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 07:25:52 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  And 21-30 (6+ / 0-)
              21. Tightened Sanctions on Iran: In effort to deter Iran’s nuclear program, signed Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act (2010) to punish firms and individuals who aid Iran’s petroleum sector. In late 2011 and early 2012, coordinated with other major Western powers to impose sanctions aimed at Iran’s banks and with Japan, South Korea, and China to shift their oil purchases away from Iran.

              22. Created Conditions to Begin Closing Dirtiest Power Plants: New EPA restrictions on mercury and toxic pollution, issued in December 2011, likely to lead to the closing of between sixty-eight and 231 of the nation’s oldest and dirtiest coal-fired power plants. Estimated cost to utilities: at least $11 billion by 2016. Estimated health benefits: $59 billion to $140 billion. Will also significantly reduce carbon emissions and, with other regulations, comprises what’s been called Obama’s “stealth climate policy.”

              23. Passed Credit Card Reforms: Signed the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure Act (2009), which prohibits credit card companies from raising rates without advance notification, mandates a grace period on interest rate increases, and strictly limits overdraft and other fees.

              24. Eliminated Catch-22 in Pay Equality Laws: Signed Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act in 2009, giving women who are paid less than men for the same work the right to sue their employers after they find out about the discrimination, even if that discrimination happened years ago. Under previous law, as interpreted by the Supreme Court in Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., the statute of limitations on such suits ran out 180 days after the alleged discrimination occurred, even if the victims never knew about it.

              25. Protected Two Liberal Seats on the U.S. Supreme Court: Nominated and obtained confirmation for Sonia Sotomayor, the first Hispanic and third woman to serve, in 2009; and Elena Kagan, the fourth woman to serve, in 2010. They replaced David Souter and John Paul Stevens, respectively.

              26. Improved Food Safety System: In 2011, signed FDA Food Safety Modernization Act, which boosts the Food and Drug Administration’s budget by $1.4 billion and expands its regulatory responsibilities to include increasing number of food inspections, issuing direct food recalls, and reviewing the current food safety practices of countries importing products into America.

              27. Achieved New START Treaty: Signed with Russia (2010) and won ratification in Congress (2011) of treaty that limits each country to 1,550 strategic warheads (down from 2,200) and 700 launchers (down from more than 1,400), and reestablished and strengthened a monitoring and transparency program that had lapsed in 2009, through which each country can monitor the other.

              28. Expanded National Service: Signed Serve America Act in 2009, which authorized a tripling of the size of AmeriCorps. Program grew 13 percent to 85,000 members across the country by 2012, when new House GOP majority refused to appropriate more funds for further expansion.

              29. Expanded Wilderness and Watershed Protection: Signed Omnibus Public Lands Management Act (2009), which designated more than 2 million acres as wilderness, created thousands of miles of recreational and historic trails, and protected more than 1,000 miles of rivers.

              30. Gave the FDA Power to Regulate Tobacco: Signed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (2009). Nine years in the making and long resisted by the tobacco industry, the law mandates that tobacco manufacturers disclose all ingredients, obtain FDA approval for new tobacco products, and expand the size and prominence of cigarette warning labels, and bans the sale of misleadingly labeled “light” cigarette brands and tobacco sponsorship of entertainment events.

              It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn't get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before... Richard P. Feynman

              by TerryDarc on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 07:27:17 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  31-40 (5+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                rdbaker43, askew, mniowan, SottoVoce, thomask
                31. Pushed Federal Agencies to Be Green Leaders: Issued executive order in 2009 requiring all federal agencies to make plans to soften their environmental impacts by 2020. Goals include 30 percent reduction in fleet gasoline use, 26 percent boost in water efficiency, and sustainability requirements for 95 percent of all federal contracts. Because federal government is the country’s single biggest purchaser of goods and services, likely to have ripple effects throughout the economy for years to come.

                32. Passed Fair Sentencing Act: Signed 2010 legislation that reduces sentencing disparity between crack versus powder cocaine possessionfrom100 to1 to 18 to1.

                33. Trimmed and Reoriented Missile Defense: Cut the Reagan-era “Star Wars” missile defense budget, saving $1.4 billion in 2010, and canceled plans to station antiballistic missile systems in Poland and the Czech Republic in favor of sea-based defense plan focused on Iran and North Korea.

                34. Began Post-Post-9/11 Military Builddown: After winning agreement from congressional Republicans and Democrats in summer 2011 budget deal to reduce projected defense spending by $450 billion, proposed new DoD budget this year with cuts of that size and a new national defense strategy that would shrink ground forces from 570,000 to 490,000 over the next ten years while increasing programs in intelligence gathering and cyberwarfare.

                35. Let Space Shuttle Die and Killed Planned Moon Mission: Allowed the expensive ($1 billion per launch), badly designed, dangerous shuttle program to make its final launch on July 8, 2011. Cut off funding for even more bloated and problem-plagued Bush-era Constellation program to build moon base in favor of support for private-sector low-earth orbit ventures, research on new rocket technologies for long-distance manned flight missions, and unmanned space exploration, including the largest interplanetary rover ever launched, which will investigate Mars’s potential to support life.

                36. Invested Heavily in Renewable Technology: As part of the 2009 stimulus, invested $90 billion, more than any previous administration, in research on smart grids, energy efficiency, electric cars, renewable electricity generation, cleaner coal, and biofuels.

                37. Crafting Next-Generation School Tests: Devoted $330 million in stimulus money to pay two consortia of states and universities to create competing versions of new K-12 student performance tests based on latest psychometric research. New tests could transform the learning environment in vast majority of public school classrooms beginning in 2014.

                38. Cracked Down on Bad For-Profit Colleges: In effort to fight predatory practices of some for-profit colleges, Department of Education issued “gainful employment” regulations in 2011 cutting off commercially focused schools from federal student aid funding if more than 35 percent of former students aren’t paying off their loans and/or if the average former student spends more than 12 percent of his or her total earnings servicing student loans.

                39. Improved School Nutrition: In coordination with Michelle Obama, signed Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act in 2010 mandating $4.5 billion spending boost and higher nutritional and health standards for school lunches. New rules based on the law, released in January, double the amount of fruits and vegetables and require only whole grains in food served to students.

                40. Expanded Hate Crimes Protections: Signed Hate Crimes Prevention Act (2009), which expands existing hate crime protections to include crimes based on a victim’s sexual orientation, gender, or disability, in addition to race, color, religion, or national origin.

                It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn't get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before... Richard P. Feynman

                by TerryDarc on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 07:28:49 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  41-50 (5+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  rdbaker43, askew, mniowan, SottoVoce, thomask
                  41. Avoided Scandal: As of November 2011, served longer than any president in decades without a scandal, as measured by the appearance of the word “scandal” (or lack thereof) on the front page of the Washington Post.

                  42. Brokered Agreement for Speedy Compensation to Victims of Gulf Oil Spill: Though lacking statutory power to compel British Petroleum to act, used moral authority of his office to convince oil company to agree in 2010 to a $20 billion fund to compensate victims of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico; $6.5 billion already paid out without lawsuits. By comparison, it took nearly two decades for plaintiffs in the Exxon Valdez Alaska oil spill case to receive $1.3 billion.

                  43. Created Recovery.gov: Web site run by independent board of inspectors general looking for fraud and abuse in stimulus spending, provides public with detailed information on every contract funded by $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Thanks partly to this transparency, board has uncovered very little fraud, and Web site has become national model: “The stimulus has done more to promote transparency at almost all levels of government than any piece of legislation in recent memory,” reports Governing magazine.

                  44. Pushed Broadband Coverage: Proposed and obtained in 2011 Federal Communications Commission approval for a shift of $8 billion in subsidies away from landlines and toward broadband Internet for lower-income rural families.

                  45. Expanded Health Coverage for Children: Signed 2009 Children’s Health Insurance Authorization Act, which allows the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) to cover health care for 4 million more children, paid for by a tax increase on tobacco products.

                  46. Recognized the Dangers of Carbon Dioxide: In 2009, EPA declared carbon dioxide a pollutant, allowing the agency to regulate its production.

                  47. Expanded Stem Cell Research: In 2009, eliminated the Bush-era restrictions on embryonic stem cell research, which shows promise in treating spinal injuries, among many other areas.

                  48. Provided Payment to Wronged Minority Farmers: In 2009, signed Claims Resolution Act, which provided $4.6 billion in funding for a legal settlement with black and Native American farmers who the government cheated out of loans and natural resource royalties in years past.

                  49. Helped South Sudan Declare Independence: Helped South Sudan Declare Independence: Appointed two envoys to Sudan and personally attended a special UN meeting on the area. Through U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice, helped negotiate a peaceful split in 2011.

                  50. Killed the F-22: In 2009, ended further purchases of Lockheed Martin single-seat, twin-engine, fighter aircraft, which cost $358 million apiece. Though the military had 187 built, the plane has never flown a single combat mission. Eliminating it saved $4 billion.

                  It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn't get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before... Richard P. Feynman

                  by TerryDarc on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 07:29:35 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  And he's certainly not Mitt Rmoney nor John McSame (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    RadGal70, SottoVoce, thomask

                    nt

                    It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn't get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before... Richard P. Feynman

                    by TerryDarc on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 07:30:42 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  it never ceases to amaze me how little (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      TerryDarc, jplanner

                      credit or respect he gets from his so-called allies.  I strongly disagree with many of his policies and some of his appointments, just as everyone does.  But this isn't about policy; it's personal.  He's dismissed as a worthless sellout on these pages every single day.  And it's impossible to watch a Saturday address or find a diary about any accomplishment he's achieved--often over the solid, well-financed unified resistance of all the GOP and many of his own party--without having to encounter the usual push-backs:

                      ~too little, too late
                      ~not really his achievement, but someone else's
                      ~doesn't go far enough
                      ~he needs to "grow a pair"
                      ~doesn't matter when he didn't "fight" for single payer, didn't arrest Bush and Cheney, didn't jail the big banksters
                      ~b-b-b-but Rahm Emmanuel!  Larry Summers!  Tim Geithner!
                      ~worse than Bush!  Worse than Nixon!

                      He is blamed for everything and given credit for nothing, and treated with the kind of unmasked contempt on the left that often matches that on the right minus the overt racism.  I'm sure he'll take his grey head and his family away from DC with an enormous sense of relief.

                      "It ain't right, Atticus," said Jem. "No, son, it ain't right." --Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

                      by SottoVoce on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 10:12:49 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

      •  The House is in session like 10 days a year, but (18+ / 0-)

        Obama plays too much golf.  I don't even take the "MSM" seriously anymore.  They're more like an Entertainment Tonight or a newsroom-based reality show.  It's really sad.

        •  right.I don't hear them report House's (0+ / 0-)

          lack of work with any analysis at all. Such as "least productive House in history goes home again". It's just "the House is in recess..."

          But they Must analyse the "meaning" of Obama's recreation. Seldom do they add that he's taken less time off than the last 2 Presidents by this point in their terms.

      •  You can't play too much golf (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        skohayes, Stude Dude, TerryDarc

        Happy just to be alive

        by exlrrp on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 06:03:52 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  President Bush did not play golf, but (8+ / 0-)

        President Bush did not play as much golf, but he certainly took more vacation than any president save Ronald Reagan.  Of course, President Reagan did get shot.

        Just to punctuate, even after taking a solid month in Texas for vacation, President Bush thought it would be OK to fly west for a birthday for John McCain instead of immediately touring the Gulf Coast that had been ravaged by Hurricane Katrina.

        The double-standard and abject hypocrisy from the political-right is simply delusional.

        •  He didn't drink either (0+ / 0-)

          Giving teetotalers around the world including the Middle East a very bad name.

          It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn't get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before... Richard P. Feynman

          by TerryDarc on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 07:32:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  There are very few things.... (49+ / 0-)

    as annoying and petty as republican's begrudging the President a vacation, or childishly claiming that he spends too much time on the golf course.
    He accomplished more in his two week vacation than they did in the entire legislative year.

    "These 'Yet To Be' United States" --James Baldwin-- -6.75, -5.78

    by kevinbr38 on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 04:27:34 AM PDT

  •  re bombing (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Onomastic, salmo

    I hope all involved are analyzing potential blowback scenariosif we stare bombing Iraq and Syria to "stop" ISIS.  Can ISIS expand beyond Iraq and Syria?  Will adjacent countries allow that?

    Will escalation by the USA and allies help rally the extremists worldwide?

    What a complete mess, tyvm Bush Et Al.

    WE WERE FORCED OUT OF Iraq by the agreement Bush signed with Malaki (seemingly corgotten by most) to leave,in 2011, mostly because of the unaccountable atrocities committed by US and it coalition against Saddam, which sent Iraq into chaos because of the botched Bremer transition mismanagement, and yet half the country blames Obama.

    Obama is in a lose lose position, because I feel it is naive to think there will not be blowback, which Obama will own.   imo

    It's difficult to be happy knowing so many suffer. We must unite.

    by War on Error on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 04:30:05 AM PDT

  •  I wonder why the Times didn't endorse Teachout.... (4+ / 0-)

    I wonder why the Times didn't endorse Teachout. Is it because she is not sufficiently friendly to Wall St? Too friendly too labor? Inquiring minds want to know...

  •  Personally I hated when (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stude Dude

    Bush played golf (remember the infamous 'now watch this drive' line from Michael moore's movie that got so much attention here), cleared brush or did most anything else.

    I personally think it gives a bad image to be high-fiving on a golf course moments after giving a serious speech on the beheading of an American. There is ISIS, Ukraine, Ferguson, Detroit, 'the border', Right-Wing lunatics and a million other issues that need dealt with. There will be plenty of time for golf a couple years from now.

    I understand the need for a vacation, I really do. But they need to make them more low profile or something, because these things are by no means helping his cause according to my very scientific polling of facebook friend postings.

    If you stand for nothing you will fall for anything.

    by LieparDestin on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 04:38:36 AM PDT

  •  August is almost over.....thank goodness. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skohayes, Stude Dude
  •  BY JELANI COBB (9+ / 0-)

    an extraordinary essay on lynchings, Ferguson and being a large black male.

    read it to the end.

    http://www.newyorker.com/...

    "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

    by Greg Dworkin on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 04:55:12 AM PDT

  •  Any F*#^nut Republican who (18+ / 0-)

    brings up golf or vacation should be reminded that W took more vacation in his 8 years than that decrepid fossil Reagan, who broke the vaction record himself. AND, W did this while we were actually at war--HIS ELECTIVE WAR. Never let those fuckers forget that and tell them to STFU about any time Obama might take.

    You may find yourself in a beautiful house, with a beautiful wife, and you may ask yourself, "How did I get here?"

    by FrankCornish on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 04:56:35 AM PDT

  •  Ryan's tax plan/budget - how many has he (13+ / 0-)

    trotted out thus far?  And every one stinks to high heaven.

    The decades of supply side economics/trickle down economics has been nothing more than the GOP offering middle class and below sacrifices to the angry gods of business in hopes of appeasing them.  In the meanwhile, those businesses and wall street have grown a more insatiable appetite all the while moving their business outside the US to avoid paying any taxes at all.

    It is well past time for an intervention.

    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 Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 04:57:47 AM PDT

  •  I have no doubt, that if Obama was to take... (11+ / 0-)

    ...Republican foreign policy advice, and re-enter Iraq with guns ablazin' - and it was to blow up in his face - that they would not hesitate to jump right down his throat about his alleged "failure of leadership".  It's one of the most powerful reasons there is for why Obama should ignore them as much as possible: 1) because any advice they give - on practically any issue - is likely to be the wrong advice, and 2) because they will not hesitate to try to make Obama pay the price for their own recklessness, irresponsibility and stupidity.

    So far as the Republicans are concerned, Obama can't catch a break - even if he were to suddenly implement every single thing they want.  But he can at least marginalize them and ignore them, so that they can't pressure him to make stupid decisions that would make matters even worse.

    All that is necessary for the triumph of the Right is that progressives do nothing.

    by Mystic Michael on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 05:15:55 AM PDT

  •  Divide and Conquer (12+ / 0-)

    The Republicans say they support the current level of benefits to those who are 55 and over.  If those of us who are past age 55 go along with this, what is to stop them from coming back the following year to tell us that more cuts are needed.  Your turn, old timers.

    Don't look back, something may be gaining on you. - L. "Satchel" Paige

    by arlene on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 05:17:37 AM PDT

  •  Frum's article was hilarious (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, skohayes, Stude Dude, NoBlueSkies

    How can he be so right and so wrong at the same time?  The inescapable conclusion of all his factual and salient points is that the Republicans are going the way of the Whig party. Yet he has a touching faith that in the end, enough people will want a less socialist government.

    He needs to read The Zero Marginal Cost Society.  When everyone's livelihood becomes precarious, except for the 1% with millions in the bank stashed for a rainy day, the majority of the population will be socialist.

    •  Or fascist, actually we're already there, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stude Dude

      never mind.

      I voted Tuesday, May 6, 2014 because it is my right, my responsibility and because my parents moved from Alabama to Ohio to vote. Unfortunately, the republicons want to turn Ohio into Alabama.

      by a2nite on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 06:17:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Wow, Arkansas (5+ / 0-)
    The number of Arkansas residents signing up for federal disability benefits has dropped 19% since October 2013, which some state officials are attributing to expanded Medicaid eligibility.

    First-time applicants decreased from 17,497 to 14,160 through Tuesday, according to the state's Social Security determination agency.

    Arkansas is providing subsidies to individuals with incomes up to 138% of the federal poverty threshold to purchase private health plans through the exchange, a model of expansion that several other Republican-controlled states are following. More than 190,000 Arkansas residents qualified for the expanded coverage through the end of July.

    Arkansas disability claims fall 19% after Medicaid expansion

    If trees gave off WIFi signals, we would probably plant so many trees, we would save the planet. Too bad they only produce the oxygen we breathe.

    by skohayes on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 06:35:22 AM PDT

  •  Anyone who has talked politics with a GOP voter (6+ / 0-)

    knows damned good and well they are blind to facts because they don't know what they are. To them, truths that work against them are lies, and they will tell you that. They heard it from Fox or Drudge or Rush, or their minister. Obama playing golf, for example. That is a big fat nothing. Bush spent over one year of his 8 years on vacation, holds the record in that department, and the results showed how a slackass can ruin foreign relationships and the American economy.
    Pretty much everything a GOP voter says is wrong and they are proud of it. 1/2 of them are voting out of religious beliefs, anyway.
    Both parties need complete makeovers but the GOP are just a bunch of liars and frauds.

    The US ranks 138th out of all 169 voting countries in actual voting. Since 1974, mid-term % of eligible voters who vote avgs. 37%. Democrats would dominate if they did one thing- GOTV. They never do. Curious.

    by Incredulousinusa on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 07:09:49 AM PDT

    •  Nice sig! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dewtx, Incredulousinusa

      And you are right that facts will only motivate their thinking into even deeper holes.  The best we can hope for is to shut them up in personal discussions when the raise their BS.

      An example: con friend says "Half of all of GM's sales are to the US govt."  I did short research and he missed one tiny detail, it has half of all FLEET sales were to the US govt. Told him and he had nothing to say. I backed it up with online data and at least he stopped blathering that BS to me.

      It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn't get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before... Richard P. Feynman

      by TerryDarc on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 08:03:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  They hear it on Fox, etc. & parrot it. Fox is evil (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TerryDarc

        Huge disinformation campaign. Very harmful to our country. Vast RW conspiracy started in early 70's and before. Irving Kristol, Bill's daddy, had something to do with it. If you haven't read Republican Noise Machine by David Brock, it is the best book I ever read on that particular subject, because he worked for them and knows the particulars. Edith Efron wrote "The News Twisters" in 1971, re news being all liberal, etc. That book was bought up by GOP to make it a best-seller, to give it credence. That type of thing. People are very gullible, mostly, on politics, IMO. Interesting story you told. Take care.

        The US ranks 138th out of all 169 voting countries in actual voting. Since 1974, mid-term % of eligible voters who vote avgs. 37%. Democrats would dominate if they did one thing- GOTV. They never do. Curious.

        by Incredulousinusa on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 12:45:31 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Goebels could only dream of such a propaganda (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Incredulousinusa

          machine.

          It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn't get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before... Richard P. Feynman

          by TerryDarc on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 02:58:03 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Nobody to tell them no. No limits. Lying is now (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            TerryDarc

            considered a to be an accepted practice.

            The US ranks 138th out of all 169 voting countries in actual voting. Since 1974, mid-term % of eligible voters who vote avgs. 37%. Democrats would dominate if they did one thing- GOTV. They never do. Curious.

            by Incredulousinusa on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 08:05:37 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Without Fox News the Rep party is nothing (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Incredulousinusa

              and w/o the Rep party, Fox news is zip. Lying is the new black.

              It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn't get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before... Richard P. Feynman

              by TerryDarc on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 08:12:51 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Those wacky older Boomers! (0+ / 0-)

    It's so unlike them to do collectively something self-centered and self-serving....

    Double special karma brownie points by turning around and patting themselves on the back for being the most cosmic and groovy generation ever....

    "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

    by Stude Dude on Wed Aug 27, 2014 at 07:26:51 AM PDT

  •  Robust? Is that how today's liberals describe (0+ / 0-)

    ordering the U.S. military to blow stuff up and kill people?  Robust — as in manly, tough, decisive, etc.   If I believed that shit, I'd vote for a real Republican, not a Republican in Democratic clothing.

  •  I've seen this golf rap before against many (0+ / 0-)

    prsidents, it is dumb but will not stop since small people, say small things, in small ways.  Basically a waste of time to stoke up inflated egos of worthless people some in the press, too.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site