Politics and Media Headlines 2/3/09


Economic crisis hitting political fundraising, too (McClatchy)
The current recession is wrapping its tightfisted hands around its latest victim: political fundraising.
NOW, we'll see some action.--Caro

All Hat No Cattle

Bailed-out Bank of America spent $10 million on Super Bowl party. (Think Progress)
Just weeks ago, the federal government extended $20 billion to Bank of America to keep it afloat, bringing its total in federal bailout dollars received to $45 billion. ABC News reports, however, that the bank managed to scrounge up millions of dollars to be an NFL sponsor and for "a five day carnival-like" Super Bowl party just outside the stadium: "...The bank refused to tell ABC News how much it is spending as an NFL corporate sponsor, but insiders have put the figure at close to $10 million..." The Huffington Post notes that this is the latest in a series of bailed-out banks that continue to spend lavishly on sports sponsorships.

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Politics and Media Headlines 1/30/09


Mad Magazine (link is to a pdf, thanks to Uppity Woman)

HALPERIN BLAMES OBAMA.... (by Steve Benen at The Washington Monthly)
President Obama went to great lengths to reach out to House Republicans, trying to get them to support an economic stimulus in the midst of an economic crisis. The president not only offered them more tax cuts than seemed necessary, he also acted swiftly to remove spending provisions -- family planning, National Mall renovations -- that they mocked. The entire Republican caucus, we now know, balked anyway. Time's Mark Halperin, naturally, is blaming Obama...

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Politics and Media Headlines 1/29/09


And Now For Something Completely Different: Davos Features "Refugee Run" (by Bill Easterly, NYU, thanks to Economist's View)

When somebody sent me this invitation [above] from Antonio Guterres, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, I thought at first it was a joke from the Onion. What do you think of the Davos rich and powerful going through the "Refugee Run" theme park re-enactment of life in a refugee camp? Can Davos man empathize with refugees when he or she is not in danger and is going back to a luxury banquet and hotel room afterwards? Isn't this just a tad different from the life of an actual refugee, at risk of all too real rape, murder, hunger, and disease? Did the words "insensitive,""dehumanizing," or "disrespectful" (not to mention "ludicrous") ever come up in discussing the plans for "Refugee Run"? I hope such bad taste does not reflect some inability in UNHCR to see refugees as real people with their own dignity and rights.

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Politics and Media Headlines 1/28/09


Matt Davies

A Mandate for Big Change (Center for American Progress)
Polls show that the public wants President Obama to make big changes, including introducing major new programs, writes Ruy Teixeira.

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Politics and Media Headlines 1/27/09


Alternate Universe: Tom Tomorrow


Click here for more.

1 in 4 Americans believe the Bush administration committed war crimes. (Think Progress)
In a new telephone survey, Rasmussen Reports has found that 25 percent of voters "believe President Bush and senior members of his administration are guilty of war crimes." Forty-four percent of Democrats and 21 percent of unaffiliated voters believe that war crimes were committed while just 4 percent of Republicans believe the same.
The reason the number is so low is that the media, and even the Democrats, have protected Bush et al.--Caro

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Politics and Media Headlines 1/26/09


Obama taking attention away from where it belongs: the White House press corps (23/6)
Worried that the press was gonna give Obama a free ride? Rest easy: they're already all up in his face.

Trust Me, I'm A Journalist: Trust In The Media Promotes Health (Science Daily)
A study of people from 29 Asian countries has shown that individuals with high levels of trust in the mass media tend to be healthier.
So trust the media... OR ELSE!--Caro

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Politics and Media Headlines 1/25/09


I always believed, when right wingers accused us liberals of wanting America to fail because we didn't like George Bush, that they were really talking about themselves, what they would want if our guy were president.  Looks as though I was right.--Caro
Internet Weekly Report

Obama tells GOP: Don't listen to Rush Limbaugh. (Think Progress)
[Friday], President Obama met with congressional leaders from both parties to discuss his economic recovery and reinvestment program, though Republicans did not appear to be interested in compromise. According to the New York Post, Obama told the GOP members at the meeting that they have to stop listening to Rush Limbaugh if they wanted to accomplish anything... When Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) complained about the spending plan, Obama shot back, "I won," adding, "I will trump you on that."
This is exactly the kind of talk we internet activists have been asking for from Democrats--for years.  I never heard anything like this from Obama when he was my senator, which is one of the reasons why I was leery of his presidential candidacy.  Now, if  he'd just apologize for his part in the sexist hate perpetrated against Hillary and push the DNC to change to a more democratic nominating process, I might actually start to like the guy.--Caro

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Politics and Media Headlines 1/23/09


Will President Obama Keep His Promise to Women?... (by Pat Racimora at No Quarter)

Looks like he will, Pat!
President Obama to Overturn Ban on Funding International Family Planning Groups that Provide Abortion
(by Jake Tapper at Political Punch, ABC News)
ABC News has learned that later today President Obama will sign an executive order overturning the "Mexico City Policy," which prohibits Non Governmental Organizations that receive international family planning assistance through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) from providing or actively promoting abortions as a method of family planning in other countries. The policy -- called the "Global Gag rule" by supporters of abortion rights -- was first instituted by President Ronald Reagan in 1984, was overturned by President Bill Clinton in 1993, and was re-instituted by President George W. Bush  in 2001.

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Politics and Media Headlines 1/22/09


The Heretik

Judge Obama on Performance Alone (by Juan Williams, an African American conservative)
If his presidency is to represent the full power of the idea that black Americans are just like everyone else -- fully human and fully capable of intellect, courage and patriotism -- then Barack Obama has to be subject to the same rough and tumble of political criticism experienced by his predecessors. To treat the first black president as if he is a fragile flower is certain to hobble him. It is also to waste a tremendous opportunity for improving race relations by doing away with stereotypes and seeing the potential in all Americans...

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Politics and Media Headlines 1/21/09


The Heretik

The audacity of Barack Obama (by Greg Hinz, Crain's Chicago Business)
Now, we will find out whether he can lead. The word that comes to my mind on this inaugural day is audacity, a word that Mr. Obama is inclined to use himself. It fits him... [Because just] over five years ago, Mr. Obama's public career was one mistake from being over... Another "a" word comes to mind: ambiguity. Will Mr. Obama's ambiguity, his ability to raise political squabbles into the civil ether without ever committing himself, help or hurt in dealing with a Congress that, sooner or later, will reclaim its perks? I don't know, any more than Mr. Obama knows, the limits of audacity. Good luck, Mr. President. I fear you'll need it.
It's silly of me to ask, I know, but shouldn't we have found out if he could lead BEFORE we put him in the White House?--Caro

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