Friday, April 27, 2012

Random Friday:Street fighter X Tekken

Limbaugh Pushes Lie That Obama Is Fueling Recovery Through Government Spending

by Marcus Feldman/media matters

Rush Limbaugh responded today to the Bureau of Economic Analysis estimate that Gross Domestic Product estimates grew at an annual rate of 2.2 percent in the first quarter of 2012 by claiming: "There isn't any economic growth, there's government growth. But there isn't any private sector growth."
But that's actually the exact opposite of what happened. Private sector gains led to GDP growth, but the growth rate was depressed because of decreases in government spending.
Here's Limbaugh:

And here are the facts from The Bureau of Economic Analysis
The increase in GDP in the first quarter primarily reflected positive contributions from personal consumption expenditures, exports, private inventory investment, and residential fixed investment that were partly offset by negative contributions from federal government spending, nonresidential fixed investment, and state and local government spending.
Essentially, economic gains made in the private sector were responsible for the growth in overall output, despite reductions in federal, state, and local spending. 
Indeed, in a blog post today, Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman noted that "Obama, far from presiding over a huge expansion of government the way the right claims, has in fact presided over unprecedented austerity, largely driven by cuts at the state and local level."
Krugman included a chart that illustrates government expenditures and gross investment over the past decade:
That explains why Krugman is a Nobel Prize winner, and Limbaugh is not.

Font size latest obstacle in struggle for democracy in Michigan

Karl Rove money machine missteps on ad

Rick Snyder Attempts to Kill Democracy in Michigan via Fontgate

By: Black Liberal Boomer/Politicususa 

Yesterday I said in my most recent post that the effort by Republicans to derail the opposition to the Emergency Manager law (Public Act 4) in Michigan by challenging the petition on the basis that the font wasn’t the right size was sheer desperation. Matter of fact, this is exactly what I said:
Realizing now that this could actually happen, supporters of Public Act 4 are now mounting a challenge to the ballot initiative in the hopes of derailing this whole issue by saying that the size of the font on the petitions just isn’t  the right size and this simply won’t do. No, honest. This is what they’re saying. You think I could make up something this good? I return you to the Free Press, same article:
“While the number of signatures hasn’t been questioned, Woodhams said, the size of the type used on the petition forms was challenged as improper.
“On Thursday the Michigan Board of Canvassers is expected to meet in Lansing to decide whether the petition will be placed on the November ballot.
‘It’s entirely up to the Board of Canvassers” whether the font size issue is enough to stop the petition,’ Woodhams said.”
Some might refer to this maneuver as desperation. I am one of them.
And at the time I wrote that? Silly me, I still clung to the belief that a challenge this ridiculous simply would not be allowed to stand, not even with Republicans making up half of the four-member Board of Canvassers. I even laughingly referred to the whole charade as ‘fontgate’ because this was all just so funny.
Not much more than an hour after I submitted my post, that same Board of Canvassers delivered their 2-2 deadlocked verdict – along party lines of course – that the fontgate issue wasn’t such a charade after all. More specifically, the Republicans in the group voted in favor of the challengers, legitimizing their politicized, anti-democratic complaint that the people of Michigan should not be allowed to vote on whether or not the Emergency Manager law should be allowed to stand because the size of the font on the petition – the same petition that contained 40,000 more signatures than required to be permitted on the November ballot – was too small. So as of now, the issue will not be allowed on the ballot unless the opponents of Public Act 4 have more success with the Michigan State Court of Appeals. Attorney Herbert Sanders is expected to file within the week on behalf of Stand up For Democracy, the organization that collected more than 203,000 validated signatures. Only 161,305 were needed.
So here’s where I believe I got it wrong; the Republican challengers weren’t acting quite so much out of desperation when they submitted their challenge to the petition as they were being strategic. Of course they knew that challenging a petition as significant as this on the basis of font size is ridiculous on its face, but in another more craftily perverted sense they also knew that half of the Board of Canvassers were Republicans which meant they knew they could count on their deadlocked, lockstep votes to overthrow democracy. The will of the people be damned. The Republicans in this instance are about the King’s business, as in King Rick Snyder.
What’s interesting to note, by the way, is that prior to the vote taken by the Board of Canvassers, the damned Secretary to the Board of Canvassers Christopher Thomas wrote a memo to the Board stating that the petition is in substantial compliance.  And not only that, he could only find one instance of a successful petition challenge based on font size. If you have time you need to follow this link and check out the actual memo for yourself.
These folks don’t give a damn about us, but we’ve always known that down here on the ground. More important, and more urgently relevant, is that it’s now becoming indisputably clear what they want is to own us. Personally? I don’t care if you hate me. But when your objective is to own and control me by stealing my vote and stifling my freedom of expression?
Oh yeah. I have a big problem with that.

Black Congresswoman threatened after Beck website posts edited video

By David Edwards/Raw Story

An African-American Congresswoman from New York was forced to call the police on Thursday after she says an edited video posted on Glenn Beck’s website incited threats of violence against her.
Judith Kargbo, a spokeswoman for Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-NY), confirmed to Raw Story that the Congresswoman’s office had asked Capital Police to investigate calls threatening the lawmaker.
“On April 19th, the congresswoman went within the district to speak to Prospect Heights Democrats for Reform,” Kargbo explained. “There she was giving an overview of her agenda in Congress and pretty much using the example of the tea party to show how important mobilization is and organization is.”
“That clip that was originally on the Prospect Heights Democrats for Reform site was edited and was posted up on, and that of course is Glenn Beck’s website,” she continued. “That was edited down and what people were taking away from it was that the congresswoman was saying that all tea party members are crazy and all tea party individuals show the ugly side of the United States.”
Kargbo said there were a “range of calls” after the video was posted. While some were very respectful, one was “threatening in nature.”
“Something to the effect — I don’t have the exact words — of, ‘She thinks we’re crazy, that b-word has not seen nothing yet,’” she recalled.
“Things like that we have to take seriously,” Kargbo explained, noting that the Congresswoman’s office is located next to the office where former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) worked before being shot in 2011.
In a statement on Thursday, Clarke pointed out that the threats “demonstrate the volatile political environment of 2012.”
“Know that I find it extremely disappointing that my words were edited and removed from context,” she added. “I stand by my statement and I will not be intimidated by those who use fear to make their point known.”
During her remarks to Prospect Heights Democrats for Reform the congresswoman had pointed to an incident where members of the tea party allegedly hurled racial epithets at two African-American congressmen, Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN) and Rep. John Lewis (D-GA). Clarke said she had dismissed many members of the tea party as “crazy” before they successfully elected 39 members to the House of Representatives.
The video posted on Beck’s website had first been edited and published by Andrew Breitbart’s
Former Agriculture Department employee Shirley Sherrod sued Breitbart last year after another one of his websites published a selectively edited clip that led to her firing.
Part 1part 2 and part 3 of Clarke’s unedited remarks can be viewed on YouTube.
Watch the unedited video from Prospect Heights Democrats for Reform.
Watch the deceptively edited version of Clarke’s remarks from

Conservative Group Club For Growth To Congress: Let Student Loan Rates Double

By Alex Seitz-Wald/Think Progress

The House will vote today on a bill to prevent the interest rate on government-backed student loans from doubling. Both Republicans and Democrats support the extension on the lower rate, but not theClub for Growth, the deep-pocketed political group backed by wealthy conservative donors, especially from the financial sector.
The group put out a “Key Vote Alert” this morning “urg[ing] all House members to vote “NO” on the Interest Rate Reduction Act (HR 4628)” and warning members that their vote may be used against them on the Club’s Congressional Scorecard, which they use to rate members when making considerations about endorsements and independent expenditures.
The Club explains that it thinks the government should not be subsidizing student loans and that the the Affordable Care Act should only be repealed as a whole:
Regardless of the merits, the government should not be in the business of subsidizing student loans. [...] It’s bad policy to subsidize student loans in the first place, but the net result will likely drive up tuition costs for all students, making the overall cost of the bill much higher than its current price tag. House Republicans want to offset this subsidy by repealing the Prevention and Public Health Fund that was created with the passage of ObamaCare. That fund should indeed be repealed, but fiscal conservatives should only try to repeal the entire law, not just parts of it. And for the most part, the offset is irrelevant. Fiscal conservatives should not be promoting bad policy, which this bill contains.
As Education Secretary Arne Duncan has noted, federal tuition assistance has not at all kept upwith tuition increases, so there is little evidence to support the Club’s claim that subsidizing student loans leads to higher tuition costs. Data from Pell Grants also casts doubt on the claim.
The Club has been active in a number key Republican primary elections this year, funding hard-right challengers against mainline conservative incumbents.
The White House has threatened to veto the GOP’s student loan bill over its cuts to the Affordable Care Act, the AP reports.


By Adam Peck/Think Progress

Fox News contributor Monica Crowley has issued an apology to Sandra Fluke for a crass tweet that Crowley sent out from her account yesterday about the Georgetown Law student’s sexual orientation. “I certainly & unequivocally apologize to Sandra & anyone else I offended. Not my intention,” wrote Crowley on Twitter. Mediaite flagged Crowley’s apology, which came after a 24 hour maelstrom of criticism capped by a strong condemnation from the Georgetown Law student herself, who calledCrowley’s initial tweet “hate speech” and “homophobic” on MSNBC last night.