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Irrelevant Crap: The Best And Worst Of 2013

by Doctor RJ @ Daily Kos…..

I love lists. There’s something so human about trying to file, index, and number things. There’s an absurdity to it, but that’s half the fun. They’re either good lists that are interesting, or they’re terrible lists which provoke argument over what people feel are either an unwarranted inclusion or errant omission. So win-win. So let’s throw these topics on the table for discussion:

  • Best and Worst Films in 2013?
  • Best and Worst Television Shows in 2013?
  • Best and Worst in Music for 2013?

Looking back at pop-culture in 2013, it’s a hard year to categorize for having a prevailing trend that was significant across all genres. While there was a good amount of twerking, selfies, and hashtagging going on, some long-term trends in the various mediums continued. For example, in the music industry, the shift from retail sales to online digital downloads continued. However, overall sales of tracks and albums have been trending down, with some speculation that online streaming from music services like Pandora andSpotify may be responsible. Similar long-term shifts and trends can also be seen in other entertainment industries. Last week Daily Kos’ very own Susan Gardner (aka SusanG) recommended to me the book Viewing America: Twenty First-Century Television Drama by Christopher Bigsby, where one of the main themes is the shift of talent towards television as the entertainment medium to discuss serious issues through art. TV was once viewed as a “wasteland” where film actors, screenwriters, and directors would be taking a step down in their career to do a TV show. In fact, a lot of TV actors wanted to escape their television jobs to do “serious” work in movies. Fast forward to the present, and television is now seen as the place where stories can be given enough time to develop thoughtful analysis of characters, themes, and exhibit commentary on various societal and political issues. And the trend in movies since the 1980s is towards blockbusters that are largely either action films and/or family movies. Of the top 10 grossing films for 2013, 8 were either sequels or prequels, 6 could be categorized as action movies, and all of the top 5 were either animated, based on comic-book characters, or specifically intended for young adults/children. Follow beneath the fold for more …. Continue Reading

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December 31, 2013 Posted by | Blogs, Government, Media, Men, Other Things, Political Satire, Politics, Projections, The Economy, Updates, Women | , , | Leave a comment

Looking back at 2013…..Daily Kos

by Doctor RJ @ Daily Kos…..

I love lists. There’s something so human about trying to file, index, and number things. There’s an absurdity to it, but that’s half the fun. They’re either good lists that are interesting, or they’re terrible lists which provoke argument over what people feel are either an unwarranted inclusion or errant omission. So win-win.

So let’s throw these topics on the table for discussion:

  • Best and Worst Films in 2013?
  • Best and Worst Television Shows in 2013?
  • Best and Worst in Music for 2013?

Looking back at pop-culture in 2013, it’s a hard year to categorize for having a prevailing trend that was significant across all genres. While there was a good amount of twerking, selfies, and hashtagging going on, some long-term trends in the various mediums continued. For example, in the music industry, the shift from retail sales to online digital downloads continued. However, overall sales of tracks and albums have been trending down, with some speculation that online streaming from music services like Pandora andSpotify may be responsible.

Similar long-term shifts and trends can also be seen in other entertainment industries. Last week Daily Kos’ very own Susan Gardner (aka SusanG) recommended to me the book Viewing America: Twenty First-Century Television Drama by Christopher Bigsby, where one of the main themes is the shift of talent towards television as the entertainment medium to discuss serious issues through art. TV was once viewed as a “wasteland” where film actors, screenwriters, and directors would be taking a step down in their career to do a TV show. In fact, a lot of TV actors wanted to escape their television jobs to do “serious” work in movies. Fast forward to the present, and television is now seen as the place where stories can be given enough time to develop thoughtful analysis of characters, themes, and exhibit commentary on various societal and political issues. And the trend in movies since the 1980s is towards blockbusters that are largely either action films and/or family movies. Of the top 10 grossing films for 2013, 8 were either sequels or prequels, 6 could be categorized as action movies, and all of the top 5 were either animated, based on comic-book characters, or specifically intended for young adults/children.

Follow beneath the fold for more ….

Continue Reading

December 31, 2013 Posted by | Blogs, Government, Media, Men, Other Things, Political Satire, Politics, Projections, The Economy, Updates, Women | , , | Leave a comment

2014: The year to ‘go small’…..

…from Politico….

Lawmakers are reluctant to rely on the federal government to get anything done — a guilt-by-association consequence of Obamacare’s botched rollout. Republicans have called it an indictment of more than a website, but of Big Government itself.

While Democrats argue the problem is obstructionism — not ideology — the result will be the same: As Washington laments the end of a do-nothing year, lawmakers are fully prepared to do as little — or even less — in the new year.

“I think anything that has a significant expansion or role for the federal government is going to be problematic,” South Dakota Sen. John Thune, a top Republican message strategist, told POLITICO. “Because I just think there’s going to be such a cynicism and skepticism attached to any promises made with regard to the federal government’s role.”

There are top tier bills for 2014 that even a divided Congress should pass. A new farm bill, another debt limit extension and appropriations to keep the government from shutting down again are already lined up for action early in the year. But none is expected to be a blockbuster.

“Some things are big enough that they have to happen,” said Sen. Jim Inhofe, an Oklahoma Republican at the center of several policy bills considered “must pass” that deal with the Pentagon, water infrastructure and highways.
Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2013/12/obamacare-clouds-future-for-big-legislation-101565.html#ixzz2p52ey3wh

December 31, 2013 Posted by | Government, Media, Men, Politics, Updates, Women | | Leave a comment

Political Roundup for July 27, 2012….Red Racing Horses

by: Ryan_in_SEPA

Fri Jul 27, 2012 at 08:00:00 AM EDT

President

Attack Ads: Despite spending $100 million on attack ads, the presidential campaigns and allies have little to show for their spending spree.  Public opinion polls have shown little to no movement over the last few months despite the ad onslaught.

Electoral College Tie:  CNN has two good articles on the possibility of a tied Electoral College and how it is quite possible. CNN also provides 8 possible ways for the Electoral College involving some very plausible combinations of states.  Click here to view the maps.

You Didn’t Build That: Four words (well technically five depending how you count) are hurting President Obama’s campaign as they have become a favorite attack of Republicans and the Romney campaign.  Here is a breakdown of how it is hurting Obama.

Rubio-Giuliani: Former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani has came out in favor of nominating Senator Marco Rubio for Vice-President.  Giuliani believes Rubio would be the strongest fit for Romney and for the GOP’s future.

Gun Control: President Obama has opened up on the gun control issue and Democrats are taking cover.  Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid refused to enter the political minefield brought up by the President as he refused to discuss any attempts to bring forward gun control legislation next year and said the Senate already has a full schedule this year.

African-American Turnout: Democrats are worried about African-American turnout in Pennsylvania.  Specifically they fear high unemployment and the new voter ID law will cause African-American turnout to be lower than in 2008. I tend to disagree with this analysis.  African-Americans turned out in 2010 in Pennsylvania at near 2008 numbers.

Pentagon Cuts: Four days before the presidental election, tens of thousands of Defense Department civilian employees will receive layoff notices if the fiscal cliff is not addressed.  This is electorally significant as a disproportionate number of the notices will be sent to Florida and Virginia residents.

More….

July 27, 2012 Posted by | Blogs, Breaking News, Government, Men, Military, Politics, Polls, Projections, The Economy, Updates, Women | , , | Leave a comment

Daily 2012 Polling for July 26, 2012

Thursday, July 26

Race/Topic   (Click to Sort) Poll Results Spread
Nevada: Romney vs. Obama Rasmussen Reports Obama 50, Romney 45 Obama +5
Missouri: Romney vs. Obama WeAskAmerica* Romney 49, Obama 40 Romney +9
New Jersey: Romney vs. Obama Monmouth University Obama 50, Romney 42 Obama +8
General Election: Romney vs. Obama Gallup Tracking Obama 46, Romney 46 Tie
General Election: Romney vs. Obama Rasmussen Tracking Obama 44, Romney 48 Romney +4
New Jersey Senate – Kyrillos vs. Menendez Monmouth University Menendez 44, Kyrillos 35 Menendez +9
Pennsylvania Senate – Smith vs. Casey PPP (D) Casey 46, Smith 36 Casey +10
Hawaii Senate – Lingle vs. Hirono Honolulu Star-Advertiser Hirono 58, Lingle 39 Hirono +19
Michigan Senate – Hoekstra vs. Stabenow PPP (D) Stabenow 52, Hoekstra 38 Stabenow +14
President Obama Job Approval Gallup Approve 47, Disapprove 47 Tie
President Obama Job Approval Rasmussen Reports Approve 48, Disapprove 51 Disapprove +3

These polling dates are from RealClearPolitics…..

July 26, 2012 Posted by | Breaking News, Media, Men, Politics, Polls, Updates, Women | , , | Leave a comment

Politics can be a Contact Thing……(Cartoon)

from Daily Kos……Matt Wuerker

July 26, 2012 Posted by | Animals, Blogs, Media, Political Satire, Politics, Sports, Updates, Women | , , , , | Leave a comment

The President orders some illegal immigrant children’s deportations halted……

In a message to the Latino and anti-immigration people….

The President has moved forcefully to do something he had been reluctant to pursue ….

For Obama the issue had been festering recently….

(I did a post on this recently)….

Latino’s are solidly behind  Obama , by more than 60%….

But the recent headline a few days ago that the OBAMA Administration had been carrying out RECORD deportations had begun to move around the Latino and Hispanic communities and Obama was seeing figures in the polls that Latino’s where NOT gonna come out and vote come November…..

There  is more to this story….

The new order applies to young illegals (under 30) that would qualify for the much talked about Dream Act….

 and…

They must have clean records…..

In another action…

Ex- Mississippi Republican Governor Haley Barbour  ( he leads a pro-Romney Pac) has come out for a process to offer citizenship to the 12 million long term illegal’s in the United States….

This position is somewhat similar to what Mitt Romney had first advocated in the GOP primaries before he scurried back to the hard right position of NO path to citizenship….

Didn’t Romney us the term’self-Deportation?”…..

The policy is designed to aid immigrants who would have been affected by the DREAM Act, a Democratic-backed bill that would have put many students and veterans on a path to citizenship but failed to win passage in Congress. The White House had been reluctant to go around Congress to resolve the issue, but began to feel pressure from advocates when a prominent Hispanic Republican, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, began working with activistson a scaled-back version of the bill.

The move puts pressure on presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, who ran to the right of the field on immigration during the GOP primaries.

Another development:

At a Christian Science Monitor breakfast Friday, former Mississippi governor Haley Barbour (R) forcefully advocated for a program of legalization for illegal immigrants currently in the country.

“We’re not going to deport 12 million people, and we shouldn’t,” said Barbour…..

More…

from Politicaldog101…

June 18, 2012 Posted by | Breaking News, Government, Law, Media, Men, Politics, The Economy, Travel, Updates, Women | , , | Leave a comment

Immigration into the US by Country….

When we all talk about immigration….

These days Latino’s and Hispanic’s come to mind….

But that isn’t really the whole picture…

True the largest number IS from Mexico….

But…

On the whole that equals just a quarter of the total….

I’ve listed the numbers from wiki.

Place of birth for the foreign-born population in the United States
Top ten countries 2010 2000 1990
Mexico 11,711,103 9,177,487 4,298,014
China 2,166,526 1,518,652 921,070
India 1,780,322 1,022,552 450,406
Philippines 1,777,588 1,369,070 912,674
Vietnam 1,240,542 988,174 543,262
El Salvador 1,214,049 817,336 465,433
Cuba 1,104,679 872,716 736,971
South Korea 1,100,422 864,125 568,397
Dominican Republic 879,187 687,677 347,858
Guatemala 830,824 480,665 225,739
All of Latin America 21,224,087 16,086,974 8,407,837
All Immigrants 39,955,854 31,107,889 19,767,316

Source: 1990 and 2000 decennial Census and 2010 American Community Survey

 From Politicaldog101…..

June 18, 2012 Posted by | Blogs, Family, Government, Law, Men, Other Things, Politics, Travel, Updates, Women | | Leave a comment

A word or two about polling …

 

by DemFromCTFollow @ Daily Kos….

Every few years as we get into the election season, we see more polls and much more commentary about the polls. So, from my vantage point of poll watching, I wanted to address a few things I see turning up with frequency in the many comments here. Most of this material is readily available on line, with some expert advice thrown in.

Are weekend polls accurate?

Gallup’s Presidential approval tracker (three day rolling average, MoE plus/minus 3) had had a mini-bump for Obama lately, and on one occasion when I posted on it, the question about whether a weekend Gallup was different than a weekday poll came up, as it has over the years. This story, looking at weekend bias, dates back to 2006:

Democrat Jim Webb has taken the lead over Sen. George Allen of Virginia, according to a pre-election poll released on Tuesday. Allen’s polling consultant rejected the latest results: “Any survey conducted Fridays and Saturdays, everybody knows they’re skewed toward Democrats.” Similar claims have surfaced in news reports about polling data since at least as far back as 2000. What’s so suspicious about weekend polls?…While it’s a common claim that weekend polls favor the Democrats, there isn’t much hard evidence to support that idea. One of the best studies of this question was conducted by two polling experts at ABC News. Gary Langer and Daniel Merkle looked at the data from ABC’s tracking polls for the last three presidential elections. They compared results from people reached on Sunday through Thursday with those reached on Friday and Saturday and found no difference. Among the Sunday-to-Thursday people polled in 2004, 49 percent supported Bush and 46 percent supported Kerry. Polls of the stay-at-home, Friday-to-Saturday crowd produced similar numbers—48 and 46.

Mark Blumenthal had posted on Gallup in 2008  (Day-of-Week Effect in Gallup Daily?) and at that time Gallup’s Jeff Jones responded:

The possibility of a day of the week effect has come up in relation to prior Gallup tracking data, such as for the 1996 and 2000 elections. We carefully examined those data for evidence of such an effect, and did not find anything to suggest a systematic effect.

Mark updated his thoughts for us:

I  have not seen any studies showing solid evidence of a weekend effect that would counter the Langer-Merkle findings, but that doesn’t mean no such evidence exists, and it may say more about a lack of studies than a lack of evidence. It is possible that awhile interviews conducted over a weekend create no partisan skew, they do skew other important characteristics or attitudes in ways that pollsters’ standard demographic weighting fails to correct.—Mark Blumenthal

Is primary polling accurate?

Harry J. Enten

Stats guru Harry J. Enten(I love the name of the blog: margin of error) looked at this past week’s Iowa entries and liked what he saw:

The 12/29-30 Selzer & Co. poll found Mitt Romney leading with 24%, Rick Santorum in second with 21%, and Ron Paul in third with 18%. This poll was the only one to correctly forecast first, second, and third place. It was the most accurate in predicting the spread between Santorum and Paul, and second most accurate in estimating the spread between Romney and Santorum.Overall, the 12/29-30 Selzer & Co. poll was the “most accurate” Iowa poll employing ARG’s Martin, Traugott, and Kennedy measure of pollster accuracy. This is not to say that Selzer & Co.’s full four-day (12/27-30) sample should not also be scored. The fact is that it was published as the “main” poll, but I think it’s necessary to point out that the two-day sample was quite accurate.

The Santorum surge was not a surprise… we wrote about it based on the Selzer/Des Moines Register poll two day sample. That isn’t a pat on the back, it’s to make a point: the polling isn’t always right, but it usually is pretty good, and it’s often more accurate than our predictions of what voters will do in a given state based on our biases.And that means that those suggesting Romney can’t win South Carolina or that Santorum’s surge will carry the day because of the evangelical vote needs to look at the polls and see if that’s supported by the data.

Do we have all the data?

We never do. Charlie Cook’s made the point for some time that candidate-driven polling (at least the well-funded national candidates) often have fresher, more detailed and sometimes more accurate data than we have. That doesn’t mean you should accept on face value campaign released polls. That might be the bit of good news released to drive a story while they hold tight onto the large portion of bad news.

Nonetheless, at least pay attention to references to ‘internal polls’ and match them to what we know. In Iowa, there were such references to dropping Ron Paul and Gingrich numbers, which proved to be the case.

At the same time, most media outlets prefer to look only at their own polls, at least on the day of release, so remember to look at them all, weigh their track records, see who they polled, and remember to go back to basics (see 20 Questions A Journalist Should Ask About Poll Results.)

Do these things, and there’ll be a lot less surprises on election day.

 

January 7, 2012 Posted by | Blogs, Media, Men, Politics, Polls, Updates, Women | | Leave a comment

Hundreds of ideas on how the executive branch can create jobs without Congressional action…..

 

byChris Bowers @Daily Kos…..

jobs

As the White House kicks off its national campaign to get Congress to pass modest job creation legislation, we are continuing our brainstorming sessionto develop a comprehensive list of ways the White House can create jobs and otherwise improve the national economy without any congressional action whatsoever. After all, even in the unlikely event that Congress passes meaningful legislation to create jobs, our economic crisis remains so acute that all available paths to recovery must be exhausted.So far, the Daily Kos community has submitted hundreds of ideas in the comments of our campaign kickoff post yesterday, and also through our online submission form. If you thought the executive branch had only limited options to improve the economy without Congress, you might change your mind after taking a look at what has been proposed.

Here is one idea:

Require all federal purchases down to pens and toilet seats be of products made in the USA by union labor.

There were a lot of variations on this call to buy American. Hiring American was one of them:

Any bases overseas… must have all services fulfilled by US personnel.

Another common plan was to end the wars, and then use the defense budget to spend more money in America:

Use the defense budget to pay for domestic transportation repairs, since the troops need highways and bridges.  How are we going to move equipment around the country to meet defense needs if our bridges are crumbling?

It can certainly be argued that or power grid is susceptible to attack.  Use the ample defense funds to upgrade our power grid with diversified solar and wind farms and a smart power distribution network.

There were also many proposals to use executive powers to expand investments into green jobs:

Use the EPA to crack down on CO2. That will get banks (sitting on $4 trillion in idle cash) to loan to utilities to invest in green jobs. Details.

Here is a particularly concrete example of what can be done to create green jobs:

Direct the federal power agencies, Bonneville and Tennessee Valley, to work with their electric utilities to develop a no-down-payment home weatherization and efficiency program with initial loan to be repaid on monthly utility bill.

continue reading…

 

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From Politicaldog101…..

September 11, 2011 Posted by | Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Media, Men, Politics, The Economy, Updates, Women | , | Leave a comment