The GOP’s loud ‘yes’ to ‘no’
Mar02

The GOP’s loud ‘yes’ to ‘no’

WASHINGTON — It’s a daunting challenge to spin the word “no” into a hopeful and forward-looking political battle cry. There are, of course, circumstances when negative arguments can work. In obviously terrible times, voters are often content to take a chance on a barely sketched-out alternative. In midterm elections, which are like midsemester report cards, voters often protest against what they don’t...

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Netanyahu dominates Israel’s election coverage
Mar02

Netanyahu dominates Israel’s election coverage

Netanyahu dominates election coverage By Ira Sharkansky JERUSALEM (SDONA) — For a political scientist committed to the view that democratic politics is the essence of civilization, an election campaign can be a difficult test. The one we are experiencing, like some others I’ve seen, brings out the worst in those aspiring to national leadership. It’s not like an academic seminar of carefully crafted efforts to reveal new information or...

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Maps to the Stars (Movie Review)
Mar01

Maps to the Stars (Movie Review)

5/5 There is skewering Hollywood and then there is squeezing it by the neck, disemboweling it with a straight razor and gathering ‘round to watch ants engulf the giblets as the host writhes in pain on the Walk of Fame. I’m often quite suspicious of cynicism, but here, screenwriter Bruce Wagner assimilates it so totally that it rises beyond simplistic pessimism and alchemizes into a toxic, forlorn ecstasy. It left me shaking in my seat...

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Netanyahu Speech to Congress  Sparks Increasing Warnings
Mar01

Netanyahu Speech to Congress Sparks Increasing Warnings

Conservative talkers and some in the non-monolithic Jewish community may be applauding Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to take up House Speaker John Boehner’s offer to in effect give President Barack Obama and the State Department a fingered half a peace sign and speak to Congress anyway, but the decision is also now bringing increased condemnations — and warnings. Those who defend Netanyahu...

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Olbermann: The Once and Former King
Mar01

Olbermann: The Once and Former King

Olbermann: The Once and Former King By Christine Flowers Keith Olbermann should be used to this by now. Two-bit, Class B second tier provocateurs can’t be terribly surprised when they’re disciplined for the umpteenth time. They thrive on reaction, court controversy and have a masterful way of turning justified castigation into unjustified persecution. Among this motley crew of the mediocre, Olbermann used to be king. For a...

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Guantanamo: Interview with Nancy Hollander
Feb28

Guantanamo: Interview with Nancy Hollander

Nancy Hollander is a partner at the law firm of Freedman, Boyd, Hollander, Goldberg, Urias & Ward in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Her practice is largely devoted to criminal cases, including those involving national security issues. She has also been counsel in numerous civil cases, forfeitures and administrative hearings, and has argued and won a case involving religious freedom in the United States Supreme Court. Ms. Hollander also...

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Russian opposition leader and Putin critic Nemtsov shot dead in Moscow
Feb28

Russian opposition leader and Putin critic Nemtsov shot dead in Moscow

Russian opposition leader Nemtsov shot dead in Moscow Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov has been shot dead in Moscow. Nemtsov, 55, an outspoken critic of President Vladimir Putin, had been due to take part on Sunday in the first big opposition protest in months in the capital. Russia’s Investigative Committee confirmed the death, saying it had opened a criminal probe. “According to preliminary...

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(Breaking Updates) Republican Groundhog Day, Again and Again and…
Feb27

(Breaking Updates) Republican Groundhog Day, Again and Again and…

Final Update: After hours, a day, a week of shameful posturing and attempting to hold funding for the critical Department of Homeland Security hostage to get their way on immigration, a Republican controlled Congress finally and reluctantly came to its senses — albeit temporarily. The Washington Post: Congress passed a one-week stopgap funding measure late Friday to avert a partial shutdown of the Department of Homeland Security...

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Leonard Nimoy, Spock of ‘Star Trek,’ Dies at 83 (ROUNDUP of Reactions and VIDEOS)
Feb27

Leonard Nimoy, Spock of ‘Star Trek,’ Dies at 83 (ROUNDUP of Reactions and VIDEOS)

Leonard Nimoy, the character actor who became an icon due to his role as the always logical first officer on the starship Enterprise on “Star Trek,” has died at age 83. Nimoy was one of those handful of actors who created a role in a film or television show that became embedded in the popular culture for years after the film or TV show ended. And “Star Trek,” a show produced by Desilu Productions when Lucille...

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Spock Is Dead
Feb27

Spock Is Dead

Mr. Spock died in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. His death and funeral scenes are in the video above. Leonard Nimoy, after having lived long and prospered, died earlier today. Sadly, there is no Genesis Planet as in Star Trek III: The Search For Spock. More at Liberal...

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Is Russia Doomed to lose in Ukraine?
Feb27

Is Russia Doomed to lose in Ukraine?

Is Russia doomed to lose in Ukraine? Alexander J. Motyl in a piece in World Affairs (h/T to RealClearWorld) says it is, and it’s worth reading in full: So who’s winning the war in eastern Ukraine—Russia or Ukraine? The answer is not as simple as it might seem, because victory means different things for each side. A Russian victory could take one of two forms: territorial expansion into large parts of southeastern Ukraine or the...

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Replicas and at Least One Treasure Destroyed by ISIS in Museum
Feb27

Replicas and at Least One Treasure Destroyed by ISIS in Museum

On Thursday, the Islamic State (ISIS) released a video purporting to show members of the group destroying ancient artifacts in Iraq. A group of men takes sledgehammers, drills and chain saws to the statues, leaving them in ruins. “The Prophet ordered us to get rid of statues and relics, and his companions did the same...

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Mike Peters Guest Cartoon: National Security Threat
Feb27

Mike Peters Guest Cartoon: National Security Threat

National Security Threat by Mike Peters Of Related Interest: –Why Did Boehner Make This Awkward Kiss Face at a Reporter? –GOP leaders set to swerve DHS off the cliff –Jackson Lee: GOP threatens to shut down Homeland Security --GOP’s shutdown mess a ‘comedy of errors,’ Pelosi says –House Republicans Not Ready To Cave On DHS Funding Mike Peters is recognized as one of our nation’s most prominent cartoon...

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Make the deal with Iran
Feb27

Make the deal with Iran

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama is clearly right — and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is wrong — about the Iran nuclear negotiations. But the broader and more consequential question of Iran’s place in the world is much more complicated. As I’ve written, I don’t fault Netanyahu for aggressively defending Israel’s interests as he sees them. Next week’s planned speech to...

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Jihadi John Finally Identified: What We Know About Mohammed Emwazi
Feb26

Jihadi John Finally Identified: What We Know About Mohammed Emwazi

The masked Islamic State executioner known as ‘Jihadi John’, named earlier today by the Washington Post as Mohammed Emwazi, grew up in West London, wore Western clothes and graduated in computer science from Westminster University. Emwazi has appeared in seven confirmed execution videos, including those showing the beheadings of British aid workers Alan Henning and...

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Memo To GOP Wingers: Keep Your Goddamned Religion Out Of My Life — And Government
Feb26

Memo To GOP Wingers: Keep Your Goddamned Religion Out Of My Life — And Government

A new study puts a face — and a particularly ugly one at that — on what was been increasingly obvious for many years: Christian conservatives, the folks who use their God like a cudgel to bludgeon we heathens with their neanderthal social agenda, exert an inordinate influence on the Republican Party even if their numbers are relatively small and their agenda is outside the electoral mainstream. This perversity is on...

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How Selma and women’s inequality got tangled at the Oscars
Feb26

How Selma and women’s inequality got tangled at the Oscars

I am southern, southwest-Georgia-southern. My Oscar night boycott arose in part because of the Academy’s shameful treatment of Selma. But I have also grown weary of the uphill battle for equality for women of all colors. My husband and I saw Selma on the heels of the electrifying, Tony-award winning play, All The Way, which explored LBJ’s first year as president. Seattle playwright Robert Schenkkan won the 2014 Tony Award...

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Chicago’s Rahm-Chuy Show
Feb25

Chicago’s Rahm-Chuy Show

CHICAGO — The mayor is proud to tout his work expanding access to pre-kindergarten programs, raising the minimum wage, and making two years of community college available to everybody. He talks admiringly about his city’s ethnic diversity and stresses his commitment to making it a place where “every resident in every neighborhood has a fair shot at success.” This is not a preview of the re-election campaign of...

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Up to John Boehner now: Thaw In The Senate On DHS Funding
Feb25

Up to John Boehner now: Thaw In The Senate On DHS Funding

A Thaw In The Senate On DHS Funding WASHINGTON — The Senate logjam blocking funding for the Department of Homeland Security was finally broken Wednesday afternoon. The Senate voted 98 to 2 to allow a funding bill for DHS to move forward with the Friday shutdown deadline looming, finally clearing a procedural hurdle that has blocked the measure for weeks. The Senate leadership...

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Netanyahu declines Democrats’ invitation for meeting during visit and further reveals himself
Feb25

Netanyahu declines Democrats’ invitation for meeting during visit and further reveals himself

At this point you have to wonder why Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in terms of imagery, doesn’t simply just apply to be a member of the RNC: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declined on Tuesday an invitation to meet with U.S. Senate Democrats during his trip to Washington next week. “Though I greatly appreciate your kind invitation to meet with Democratic Senators, I believe that doing so at this time...

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