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If you find the rules here are too confining, try the Morning Blog.

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Every so often I intrude TO/OT with a personal pick of a site that I find important that I feel needs to be shared and not lost in the shuffle of the constant flow of thoughts on The Planet.

And yet with globalization, we seem to have developed a strange apprehension about the efficacy of our ability to apply the innovation and hard work necessary to successfully compete in a complex security and economic environment. Further, we have misunderstood interdependence as a weakness rather than recognizing it as a strength. The key to sustaining our competitive edge, at home or on the world stage, is credibility — and credibility is a difficult capital to foster. It cannot be won through intimidation and threat, it cannot be sustained through protectionism or exclusion. Credibility requires engagement, strength, and reliability — imaginatively applied through the national tools of development, diplomacy, and defense.

The Y Article

A National Security Narrative

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

kesmarn says:

Working in a hospital tends to teach people to keep their emotions pretty much under control — at least while they’re on the job. But tonight I came about as close to losing it as I ever have.

I was admitting a patient who needed in-patient attention because she was so sick from the side effects of chemo that she was getting dehydrated. She was down to about 88 pounds and was so weak that walking the short distance to the bathroom was almost too much for her. In the process of the admission interview, we are required to ask patients whether they have any concerns about paying for medications or their hospitalization.

Her answer was: “Oh yes! The state just threw me off of Medicaid. I ended up on Medicare, but I have no Part D, so I have to pay for all my own meds.” (This included her chemo.) “I’ve tried and tried to call my case worker but the phone just rings and rings most times. If I am able to get through, all I can do is leave a voice mail. And the case worker never calls back.”

I assured her that the Social Service people would get on the case and advised her to let them fight the battle for her while she got some rest.

Inside, I was boiling.

This is not “austerity.” This is murder.

How Kasich and his Tea Party cronies could expect this frail, very ill woman to navigate through the systematic and deliberately neglectful maze they had set up is beyond me. I’m sure the medicaid case workers have ridiculously unrealistic caseloads. I doubt that they are intentionally refusing to return her calls. No. The blame for this horror story doesn’t fall on the patient, the case worker, the hospital, or the Department of Job and Family Services.

The blame for this belongs squarely on the shoulders of John Kasich, the Koch brothers who own him, and the RW in the State of Ohio.

There should be an especially hot corner of the Great Eternal E-Z Bake reserved for that crew, comes the REAL rapture.

EVIL!

~~~~~~

 

American Civic Knowledge Survey

Both the ancient Greeks and Romans valued wise and public-spirited citizens. Let’s see just how wise you really are? Are you a Barbarian, Philosopher King, or something in-between?

 

Mapping the Measure of America

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SueInCa
Member

Has everyone heard about this? I am posting it for information.

http://civic.moveon.org/event/events/attendees/index.html?event_id=116531&id=-15269022-SaEB4ox

I am going to see what it is all about. I hope it is not like the meetings they started after the election which they dropped in mid-stream without any warning.

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ADONAI
Member

So, wait. Someone called Obama a dick? HA!

I would just ask that person, “what do you expect?”. You sit in a room day after day listening to dicks being dicks to you, eventually you’re gonna say something.

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Khirad
Member

I always thought sourpuss Halperin was a bit of a dick, but it was done in jest – he was goaded to do it tongue-in-cheek. I completely disagree with Halperin’s suggestion that Obama’s tact was disrespectful in calling out the Repubs, but this and the pained apologies were even more cringeworthy to me. They’re acting as if he dropped the f-bomb. I happened to have seen this go down and the solemn mea culpas were bewildering to me. Considering all the disrespect towards the president, this was a tempest in a teapot IMHO.

I’m not defending the show in general, or Mark Halperin, but really, it wasn’t as bad as it’s being made out to be. I even dropped them an e-mail saying to stop with the pained on-air apologies. It almost made it worse and lent a gravity to the original comment that was never there to begin with – it was a blip, a bad schtick at worst. That being said, Halperin is a dick, as was the whole characterization that Obama stepped over some line and was unfair to the Republicans. But they do that all the time, and no one gets suspended for that. I see this more a consequence of silly puritanism, thereby missing the whole point.

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Sabreen60
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Sabreen60

Every time some assh0le like Halperin says something like this I go to Obama 2012 and donate. Now Sen. Pat Roberts says the President needs to take a valium. You know the “angry black guy needs to cool it”. So I’ve got to donate, AGAIN. At this rate I won’t have enough money to buy anymore mugs and tee-shirts.

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kesmarn
Admin

I don’t want to bust both of our budgets, Sabreen, but Rep. Joe Walsh just referred to the President in that press conference as “a 10 year old who doesn’t want to get serious” on CNN’s “In the Arena.”

This is beginning to look like a concerted effort to “Howard Dean-ize” the President. (“Oooooh…he showed emotion. He’s out of control. He’s lost it.)

I hope people are smart enough not to fall for that stupid Rep trick again.

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Chernynkaya
Member

Sabreen–you ROCK!

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Sabreen60
Member
Sabreen60

Thanks Cher. But when I grow up I want to be like you!

I see Senator Cornyn just upped the ante…wait…please wait a moment….honey, can I get $100…these guys have caused me to go a little over budget this week. Ok, thanks.

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Kalima
Admin

Personally I’m glad, this guy has grated on my last nerve for a long time. I hope they don’t let him back in. I’m so sick and tired of the disrespect I hear in your media.

MSNBC’s Halperin Suspended for Comment
Time columnist apologizes for dickish description of Obama as the White House calls comments “inappropriate.”

http://blogs.thedailybeast.com/spin-cycle/2011/6/30/msnbcs-mark-halperin-suspended-for-calling-obama-a?om_rid=NsjkoD&om_mid=_BODM3YB8cKEl59

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Chernynkaya
Member

I could not agree more! I’d prefer that Joke and Halperin were suspended indefinitely from the human race. I just read a couple of commentaries about the incident which I think really nailed the much more important issue:

I care less about Halperin’s use of the word “dick” than I do about the argument he and Joe Scarborough were making — that Obama somehow stepped over some kind of line in aggressively calling out the GOP for refusing to allow any revenues in a debt ceiling deal. This notion that Obama’s tone was somehow over the top — when politics is supposed to be a rough clash of visions — is rooted in a deeply ingrained set of unwritten rules about what does and doesn’t constitute acceptable political discourse that really deserve more scrutiny. This set of rules has it that it should be treated as a matter of polite, legitimate disagreement when Michele Bachmann says deeply insane things about us not needing to raise the debt limit, but it should be seen as an enormously newsworthy gaffe when she commits a relatively minor error about regional trivia. This set of rules has it that it should be treated as a matter of polite, legitimate disagreement when Republicans continually claim that Dems cut $500 billion in Medicare in a way that will directly impact seniors, even though fact checkers have pronounced it misleading, but it should be seen as “demagoguery” when Dems argue that the Paul Ryan plan would end Medicare as we know it.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/post/msnbcs-suspension-of-mark-halperin-is-way-over-the-top/2011/03/03/AGjCnAsH_blog.html
And this:

This really is nonsense. It’s not the word “dick” that’s the problem, fergawdsake. It’s not pictures of dicks either. It’s that these people have contrived this absurd set of shallow manners in which saying dick or taking a picture of a dick is wrong while lying, manipulating and cavalierly risking the country’s future (which is what Obama was allegedly being a dick about!) is considered perfectly acceptable.

It’s the perfect manifestation of the Village. A bunch of decadent aristocrats pretending to be virgins and nuns, moralizing over trivia as a “lesson” for the rubes, all the while indulging in a debauched orgy of power and privilege.

http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2011/06/greg-sargent-exposes-village-virgins.html?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

Again, yes, calling the President a dick is revolting. But seriously, the reason they think Obama was “being a dick” is the true obscenity! And no one really focuses on that–on the obscenity of the policies of the Right! Bachmann gets ridiculed for her idiocy about history, but NOT for her much more evil ideas. Same with Halperin and his other assholes. What I wish the entire uproar was about was not that Halperin was rude and disrespectful–but about WHAT he thought was dickworthy. In any sane world, Halperin’s criticism would have caused the uproar–not the word “dick.”

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Khirad
Member

Exactly my takeaway. The word ‘dick’ was not my issue at all. It was the whole assertion that I found offensive.

But of course, you can’t get suspended for the assertion, even though it is far more damaging than a word I think is about as offensive as butt. Is dick really still beyond the pale in this day and age? Golly gee Beaver.

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Kalima
Admin

Thanks for including the comments Cher, I linked to what the President said down below yesterday and saw nothing wrong with it. If the GOP want to act like rowdy infantile school kids, the they should be made to stay after class.

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Chernynkaya
Member

Update:

New details on Mark Halperin’s suspension: An MSNBC source tells me that MSNBC preident Phil Griffin’s initial response to Halperin’s “dick” crack was that he should be suspended for two weeks, in keeping with Ed Schultz’s recent limited suspension. But the volume of emails flooding in demanding Halperin’s firing persuaded him the suspension should be indefinite, the source says. That’s what MSNBC announced this morning.

But the White House has been privately sending MSNBC a similar message to what David Axelrod said earlier today, the source says: That they view Halperin’s move as stupid and distasteful, but ultimately a mistake that should not be a defining one. That, plus the commentary today saying it was an overreaction, likely means that Halperin will be ultimately allowed back on the air at some point, the source says.

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Kalima
Admin

So basically, it pays to act like a low class arsehole on the air. Shame.

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kesmarn
Admin

It might have taken him 10 years of being a sycophantic hanger-on and douche to get his career to that point, Kalima, but he blew it all up in 10 seconds, didn’t he?

You could see the panicky flop-sweats he was going through as he issued that apology.

What a stupid, insulting, juvenile thing to say. I think he needs to find another job — well out of the public eye. Just because the President is a cool guy with a sense of humor, is no reason to think that it’s okay to show disrespect like this.

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Kalima
Admin

I used to hear people talk about “Morning Joe” so when it became available, I downloaded it from iTunes. Now I can’t watch it because of guys that this, and of course the obvious reasons too. I hope that they can him, he hasn’t had a single good word to say about the President or this administration, and that miserable know-it-all face and attitude induced bile every time he came on. Good riddance. As you say, HS locker room snark doesn’t belong on a political opinion program. He and those like him disgust me.

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kesmarn
Admin

I can’t watch “Morning Joe” either, Kalima. Too giddy/snarky too early in the morning. (And I’m not a morning person to start with!)

They and people like Robin Meade are not much different/better than FOX’s Megyn Kelly or Sean Hannity.

If we based our judgments only on these programs, we could only conclude that 35 is the new 15.

I know absolutely that there are people in their 30s and 40s out there who are brilliant and have sparkling personalities. Why aren’t they on cable?

I guess that’s why so few of us watch it!

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Kalima
Admin

I have no time for the host or his jumpy sidekick Mika, they all look as if they are on speed, and Joe constantly boasting about his term in Washington makes me want to say. “Wow, weren’t you the lucky guy”.

I just went to iTunes and unsubscribed it from my podcast list, don’t watch more than 3 minutes of it before screaming anyway.

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Kalima
Admin

Ah yes bito, I had forgotten about the dead staffer and have forgotten the details too, but there is no excuse for the things he says on his show sometimes. He sounds as if he is living in another universe when he talks about the President and the GOP being able to work together to accomplish things and I have to wonder if he’s sober when he’s on the air.

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whatsthatsound
Member

unbelievable. Lower a bar, and some jerk tries to wiggle underneath it. Fortunately, this guy got nailed, and I would hope there is very little enthusiasm among viewers for his return to the airwaves.

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Kalima
Admin

Exactly wts, I would say, enough is very much enough.

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kesmarn
Admin

How nauseating…

Glenn Beck is rambling on and on, in the most patronizing way, about how so many of his “great ideas” come from his support people (camera and sound guys), a number of whom are minority folks. (Limbaugh does the same thing.) The staff people are standing there, looking uncomfortable, just trying to do their jobs and stay under the radar.

It’s such a relief that this is his last show. I’m sure they just want to get the hell out of there.

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KillgoreTrout
Member
ADONAI
Member

I like Obama but I’ll never forget that he said this was a “necessary war”. I hope he’s in office in 2104. Once the troops are all out(which isn’t happening), we can ask him what was so goddamn necessary.

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choicelady
Member

Because of what Bush had started and the long time haven Afghanistan had become for terrorists. That is no longer true. What has changed is that we have shifted policy (in Afghanistan and elsewhere) to trying to rebuild that nation. I have heard a number of people familiar with the character of Afghani political organization say that is impossible, that it is and always has been a compilation of regions not a nation state. I think that is true, and I think the goal, while laudable, is probably untenable. But morally I believe Obama is right – we have to try to give stability to those regions because of the great damage done by Bush’s decision first to go in, then to ignore it all in favor of Iran while still having us lob munitions at Afghani people. Obama is trying his best to clean up the mess.I’m not sure anyone can do that.

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KillgoreTrout
Member

Afghanistan was in tatters before we went in. The Soviets really messed up that country. I am all for helping other nations, but every time I hear it said that we are nation building in foreign countries, I can’t help feeling that we have plenty of nation building to do right here at home. Just think of what 4 TRILLION dollars could do here at home.

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ADONAI
Member

[img]http://botropolis.com/wp-content/uploads/change-into-a-truck.jpg[/img]

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