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commentary on Politics and a little bit of everything else

From Talkandpolitcs…….Sarkozy goes to Washington…….

The French President rounds of his two-day trip with meeting Obama today Tuesday march 30th at 3:30pm, following a press conference in Rose Garden 4:45 and a private dinner w/Carla Bruni and the Obama’s in the White House at 6:30pm.

The trip has several agendas – mending fences with the White House, discussing Nato, upcoming French leadership of G-20, European participation in the Mideast military and strategic operations, and international market and financial reforms and regulations.

The passage of health care reform in Congress has restrengthened Obama’s position abroad, and Sarkozy is struggling politically at home and could use a foreign policy win.

From the Sarko speech at Columbia University yesterday

“I know people don’t always understand how the EU functions, but you have to realise it’s comprised of 27 countries who fought each other for centuries” he stated. And to complicate matters, “Within the 27, there are 16 of us who decided to use the same currency.”

More……..

This from our friend over @ Talkandpolitics.….

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March 31, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Entertainment, Family, Government, Media, Men, Other Things, Politics, TalkandPolitcs, Travel, Updates, Women | , | Leave a comment

From Talkandpolitics……Adams on the American Revolution ……

From Talkandpolitics……

Just done with the HBO John Adams series from 2008 – excellent show. The last episode depicts an aging and somewhat bitter John Adams, who proclaims that nothing is as false as the modern european history, “..except for modern American History.” “The real and true story of the American Revolution is lost….   ….forever……”

This scene never happened.. it’s a shameful fiction for posterity.

For More…….


March 28, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Media, Men, Movies, Other Things, Politics, TalkandPolitcs, Updates | , | Leave a comment

Web-tip; whitehouse live…from Talkandpolitcs….

Lots of good stuff on the WH site, substantive blogposts and lots of audio/video. The live page features a press conference as we speak, as well as Obama speech in Iowa tomorrow..

Gibbs making analogies between his six-year old and some US Senators…..More @ Talkandpolitcs….

March 25, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Entertainment, Government, Media, Other Things, Politics, TalkandPolitcs, Updates | , , , | Leave a comment

The Vote is 224 to 206 in the House on procedures….clearing the way for the vote tonight…..

Landmark health-care legislation passed a series of procedural hurdles in the House of Representatives and headed toward a crucial vote on final passage Sunday night after President Obama reached a deal with Democratic holdouts on an executive order designed to allay their concerns about abortion funding.

After 5 1/2 hours of often contentious floor speeches and a string of procedural votes, the House approved the rules for final debate on a Senate-passed health-care bill and a House package of fixes by a vote of 224 to 206. That vote set the stage for what House Democratic leaders hoped would be the penultimate milestone later Sunday night of Obama’s year-long effort to overhaul the nation’s $2.5 trillion health-care system.

Following the House votes, Obama planned to launch a campaign aimed at countering conservatives’ criticisms of the health-care bill, aides said.

Rallying last-minute support for the overhaul, Obama announced Sunday afternoon that he would issue an executive order after passage, attesting that the bill is consistent with longstanding restrictions on the use of federal funds for abortions.

The arrangement won the support of a key bloc of anti-abortion House Democrats, whose leader, Rep. Bart Stupak(D-Mich.), said at a news conference, “I’m pleased to announce we have an agreement.”

Appearing with Stupak were half a dozen other holdout Democrats. With them on board, “we’re well past” the 216 votes needed in the House to approve the health-care legislation, Stupak said.

After 5 1/2 hours of often contentious floor speeches and a string of procedural votes, the House approved the rules for final debate on a Senate-passed health-care bill and a House package of fixes by a vote of 224 to 206. That vote set the stage for what House Democratic leaders hoped would be the penultimate milestone later Sunday night of Obama’s year-long effort to overhaul the nation’s $2.5 trillion health-care system.

Following the House votes, Obama planned to launch a campaign aimed at countering conservatives’ criticisms of the health-care bill, aides said.

Rallying last-minute support for the overhaul, Obama announced Sunday afternoon that he would issue an executive order after passage, attesting that the bill is consistent with longstanding restrictions on the use of federal funds for abortions.

The arrangement won the support of a key bloc of anti-abortion House Democrats, whose leader, Rep. Bart Stupak(D-Mich.), said at a news conference, “I’m pleased to announce we have an agreement.”

Appearing with Stupak were half a dozen other holdout Democrats. With them on board, “we’re well past” the 216 votes needed in the House to approve the health-care legislation, Stupak said.

More…….

White House pictures from Talkandpolitcs.…..

Check out these photos from inside the White House today, as congress debates the Health Bill and the final vote in the House of Reps.

Rahms office

The Oval Office

March 21, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Government, Healthcare, Law, Media, Men, Other Things, Politics, TalkandPolitcs, Updates | , , , , | Leave a comment

For History Buffs….Talkandpolitcs gives a John Adams tip…..

Watch tip; John Adams HBO

Just started a new dvd-set last night, the emmy award winning television mini-series from 2008; “John Adams”. Very promising start with street rebellions in Boston and forces of freedom, justice and liberty brewing towards the British colonial rule.

Episode 1: Rising tensions in Boston forces the independent-minded lawyer John Adams to take a political stand between the freedom of the people and the british rule and crown.

From Talkandpolitcs…..

March 14, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Entertainment, Government, Media, Men, Other Things, Politics, TalkandPolitcs, Updates | , , | Leave a comment

Nixon and Kissinger…..from Talkandpolitics…….

Dallek on Nixon and Kissinger – short review

Done with the Dallek-book on “Nixon and Kissinger: Partners in Power”. A good read on both politics and the people involved. Most striking were perhaps the degree of emotion and personal sensitivities driving the actions and deliberations of the two men. The need for recognition and approval was sometimes cartoon-like, with Henry routinely threating to resign because there were “no need for him” etc.

As for the foreign policy and Nixon doctrine, there’s a nice epilogue discussing the legacy and debates on China and Soviet détente, as well as Mideast policies. Some claim they laid the groundwork for ending the cold war, some say they were too soft on the issue.

Either way, a fascinating book on a fascinating subject.

From Talkandpolitcs…..

March 11, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Entertainment, Government, Men, Politics, TalkandPolitcs, Updates | , , | Leave a comment

From Talkandpolitcs……Small drips about job numbers and recovery …….

From Talkandpolitcs…..

Good ed in the times today. Consider this;

  • The average jobloss the last four months was 27.000
  • The average jobloss the same period last year was 727.000

Ok. So the huge chunck of labor cut after the meltdown seem to have stopped. Which were bound to happen at some level anyways. But, to recover to the same level as before it all started, we need a net growth of jobs of 400.000 a month for THREE years.

A bit sobering. Article here.

….And good news for the Obama White House and Democrats, eh?

From the Dog…….

March 7, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Government, Media, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, TalkandPolitcs, The Economy, Updates | , , , | Leave a comment

Tip of the day; How to tie your shoes……..

From Talkandpolitics……

There’s a great one in nytimes today, about a woman who discovered she’s been tying her shoes the wrong way for half a century. The little things in life..

Here’s the difference…….

Balanced knot on the left, granny knot on the right.

From Runners World.….

Lately I’ve been thinking of the things my parents taught me — all those habits that were handed over to me one by one when I was a child. These are the sorts of thoughts I always have when I’m teaching writing, which is partly the act of revealing bad habits to their surprised owners. What got me thinking this time was the discovery that I’ve been tying my shoes wrong for more than half a century.

I’ve been tying a granny knot in my laces, a lopsided knot that tends to come untied even when doubled. It’s the knot my mother taught me. But thanks to a tip on the Internet, I learned that if I wrap the lace around the first bow the opposite way, I get a reef, or square, knot, which lies evenly across the shoe and doesn’t come untied.

(You can see for yourself at http://bit.ly/92NW56.)

I believe that if my mother had known about the reef knot, she would have taught it to me. What mother wants her child’s laces to come undone?

Here’s another example. My dad taught me how to adjust the sideview mirrors on a car. In their reflection, I learned, I should be able to see the edge of the vehicle I’m driving — as though vertigo might set in if I couldn’t locate a mechanical version of myself in the mirror. But this is exactly the setting that creates a blind spot on both sides. There’s a better way (http://bit.ly/cY2dtl). I’ve been using this new setting on the freeways of Los Angeles, and I realize now that I’ve been driving with my mirrors improperly adjusted for more than 40 years.

These are small things. They’re also deeply embedded and as close to unconscious as learned acts can be. To tie a reef knot in my laces, I have to try to tie a reef knot. That means beginning to do what I’ve always done and then undoing it — reefing the granny, in other words. I’m sure my dad didn’t want me to have blind spots. He simply passed along the blind spots he’d inherited. Now I’m having to learn to trust what the mirrors show instead of what they don’t.

One of the beauties of the Internet is its ability to cough up tips like these from the collective experience of humanity. I’ll discover more, I’m sure — slight, but somehow significant adjustments to the things my parents taught me, the deep habits of a lifetime. I don’t imagine that I’m driving without blind spots in reef-knotted shoes on my way to the examined life. But something has changed, and I welcome it.

March 4, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Media, Men, Other Things, Sports, TalkandPolitcs, Updates, Women | , | Leave a comment

From Talkandpolitcs……Rep. Anthony Weiner gives the Republicans hell on Healthcare……

From Talkandpolitcs…..

Anthony Weiner slamming the GOP hard

Wow, check this one out:

“You gotta love these Republicans,” Weiner declared. “I mean, you guys have chutzpah. The Republican Party is a wholly owned subsidiary of insurance companies.”

He goes on and on and repeats the whole thing several times, gets a rap and still repeats it. How long can a guy like that last in politics?

His website on youtube here.

Link……….

February 27, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Government, Healthcare, Law, Media, Men, Other Things, Politics, TalkandPolitcs, Updates | , , , , | 1 Comment

From Talkandpolitics……Schools and the next generation..

From Talkandpolitics…..

From Bob Herbert at NYTimes:

One section of the Maytown Elementary School in rural Maytown, Pa., was built in 1861. Another section was built in the late-1920s. There’s a time clock in the ancient gym that was donated by the class of 1946.

This is a school that could use an update. No, scratch that. It needs to be replaced.

Shelly Riedel, superintendent of the Donegal School District, which includes Maytown, told me that teachers can’t mount smart boards in their classrooms because of the asbestos “encapsulated” behind the walls. The asbestos is not dangerous as long as the walls are not disturbed. The electricity is not particularly reliable. A teacher who is using, say, an overhead projector has to check to make sure that other teachers are not using similar devices at the same time as that might cause an outage.

There is no air conditioning. And there is no money right now to replace the school, which has an enrollment of 237.

It goes on.. Booming deficits and ruined schools, this looks bad for 2030 and later on. It’s an important article, recommended reading here..

February 23, 2010 Posted by | Blogs, Ecology, Education, Government, Media, Other Things, Politics, TalkandPolitcs, Taxes, The Economy, Updates | , , , | Leave a comment