Politics

The DC Morning – July 21, 2010

Journolist update: Liberals wished death on FOX News, Rush LimbaughTargets of Journolist respond with disproportionate maturityDemocrats will add billions to the deficit todayMaine solves the public pension problem (not really) Umpteenth bad poll comes out showing Washington is getting a helluva makeover in NovemberThe USDA’s disastrous image problem

1.) America’s brightest liberal minds are vicious, petty — The latest story from Journolist, where liberals once gathered in a private group of 400 to talk about basketball and death, is not pleasant. In a post to the list-serv NPR producer Sarah Spitz said she wouldn’t have helped Rush Limbaugh if she witnessed him going into a cardiac arrest. Instead, she wrote that she would “Laugh loudly like a maniac and watch his eyes bug out” as Limbaugh writhed in torment. “In boasting that she would gleefully watch a man die in front of her eyes,” writes The Daily Caller’s Jonathan Strong, “Spitz seemed to shock even herself. ‘I never knew I had this much hate in me,’ she wrote. ‘But he deserves it.’” Other members wondered if there was a way to shut down FOX News. “I hate to open this can of worms,” wrote wrote UCLA law professor Jonathan Zasloff, “but is there any reason why the FCC couldn’t simply pull their broadcasting permit once it expires?” In other words, big-hearted liberals gathered on a semi-public list to discuss ways to end the lives and businesses of people they disagreed with.
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2.) Rove, Barnes respond politely to ‘liberal scoundrels’ — You’d think that after liberal columnist Spencer Ackerman privately encouraged hundreds of his peers to smear as racist Weekly Standard editor Fred Barnes and former Bush White House official Karl Rove whenever they criticized then-candidate Barack Obama’s ties to a radical Chicago pastor, the two of them would be a little ornery. This is not actually the case! When contacted by The Daily Caller, Rove said he didn’t judge the entire group by one person’s actions, only that he “would hope that somebody would say, ‘Mr. Ackerman, do you really believe we ought to fabricate a lie about people just because we don’t agree with them?’” Barnes, meanwhile, dismissed the claim wholesale. “The charge has been made so often without any evidence that it has lost its sting,” he said. “It has become the last refuge of liberal scoundrels.”
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3.) Democrats are this close to extending unemployment benefits without paying for them — “With a GOP filibuster safely broken,” reports the AP, “the Senate is poised to pass legislation restoring jobless benefits for millions of people unable to find work in the frail economic recovery.” The wire service calls today’s vote “a formality after the Democratic-controlled Senate voted 60-40 Tuesday to move ahead on the bill. The measure would then go to the House for one final vote and on to President Barack Obama later this week.” Republicans had hoped to offset the cost of the bill, and almost did so in March, until House Speaker Nancy Pelosi refused to sign of on any unemployment benefits extension that didn’t add to the deficit. “At issue are payments averaging $309 a week for almost 5 million people whose 26 weeks of state benefits have run out. Those people are enrolled in a federally financed program providing up to 73 additional weeks of unemployment benefits.”
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4.) State of Maine desperately wants to not have a public pension problem anymore — “Just as workers in the private sector participate in Social Security in addition to any pension plan at their companies, most states put their workers in the federal program along with providing a state pension,” reports the New York Times. “Maine and a handful of others, however, have long been holdouts, relying solely on their state pension plans. In addition, most states have excluded some workers — often teachers, firefighters and police — from the national retirement system and its associated costs, 6.2 percent of payroll for the employer and an equal amount for the worker.” But now that things are going to crap (a product of paying public servants the wages of monarchs), Maine is turning to Social Security: “legislators have prepared a detailed plan for shifting state employees into Social Security and are considering whether to adopt it. They acknowledge it will not solve their problem in the short term but see long-term advantages.” Those advantages being…what? More people drawing out of an already muddy well? More old people whining about the taste of store-brand cat food? Really, tell me what these advantages are.
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5.) Another bad poll for Obama, who will probably ignore it — “A year after President Barack Obama’s political honeymoon ended, his job approval rating has dropped to a negative 44 – 48 percent, his worst net score ever, and American voters say by a narrow 39 – 36 percent margin that they would vote for an unnamed Republican rather than President Obama in 2012,” according to Quinnipiac. Also? “Anti-incumbent sentiment slams both parties as voters disapprove 59 – 31 percent of the job Democrats are doing, and disapprove 59 – 29 percent of Republicans in Congress. But voters say 43 – 38 percent they would vote for a Republican in a generic Congressional race.” November is going to be bloody. (FIGURATIVELY SPEAKING, OF COURSE.)
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6.) Monolithic government agency acted dumb, say conservatives and liberals — “The controversy over USDA official Shirley Sherrod has taken a surprising turn. Not only has the Georgia farmer she allegedly discriminated against come to her defense, but a few prominent conservative and liberal opinion leaders have united in saying she was unjustly ousted based on a selectively edited video,” reports Politics Daily’s Matt Lewis. “The controversial video of a speech she made in March to an NAACP forum showed Sherrod admitting that she withheld full help to a white farmer who was facing bankruptcy. However, it now appears the remarks may have been taken out of context. After all, the incident occurred 24 years ago, and Sherrod says she was telling the story in order to explain that she was wrong.” But god forbid anyone think about nuance.
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