Archive for April, 2012

April 29, 2012

Let’s just say it: The Republicans are the problem.

by Ben Hoffman

The GOP has become an insurgent outlier in American politics. It is ideologically extreme; scornful of compromise; unmoved by conventional understanding of facts, evidence and science; and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition.

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April 27, 2012

Saturday, April 28th, 2012: Thousands to March in Denver

by Ben Hoffman

On April 28th, 2012, at 9:30 a.m., thousands of Colorado women and their family members will gather at Civic Center Park’s Greek Amphitheater for a rally to protect women’s access to health care, and for the right of each woman to make her own health care decisions. State and federal legislators, musicians, poets, community leaders and ordinary Coloradans will be addressing current legislation in Colorado and other states. Following the rally, attendees will march around the State Capitol and back around Civic Center Park to where they started.

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April 26, 2012

by Ben Hoffman

The Same Rowdy Crowd

A brilliant and widely circulated Chicago Tribune obituary claims that Facts has died. If you haven’t read the whole thing, here is a flavor:

Through the 19th and 20th centuries, Facts reached adulthood as the world underwent a shift toward proving things true through the principles of physics and mathematical modeling. There was respect for scientists as arbiters of the truth, and Facts itself reached the peak of its power.

But those halcyon days would not last. People unable to understand how science works began to question Facts. And at the same time there was a rise in political partisanship and a growth in the number of media outlets that would disseminate information, rarely relying on feedback from Facts.

… Facts is survived by two brothers, Rumor and Innuendo, and a sister, Emphatic Assertion.

Services are alleged to be private. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that mourners make…

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April 17, 2012

Levon Helm is Dying of Cancer

by Ben Hoffman

A very sad note just appeared on the website for Levon Helm, the drummer-singer of the Band.
“Levon is in the final stages of his battle with cancer,” says the note. “Please send your prayers and love to him as he makes his way through this part of his journey. Thank you fans and music lovers who have made his life so filled with joy and celebration…he has loved nothing more than to play, to fill the room up with music, lay down the back beat, and make the people dance! He did it every time he took the stage.”
Helm was diagnosed with throat cancer in the late 1990s. He recovered, but it took him many years to recover his singing voice. This past Saturday evening Robbie Robertson sent “love and prayers” out to Helm.

Source

The songs from The Band will live on for centuries to come. Levon had one of the great voices in rock music, as did Rick Danko and Richard Manuel. They are all missed but will be remembered for all the great music they provided. They enhanced our lives tremendously.

April 10, 2012

by Ben Hoffman
April 10, 2012

by Ben Hoffman

Frederica Cade's Blog

Charles and David Koch are well-known for seeking less regulations. They are also known for their many environmental violations and for the money they spend on Republicans. Like Republicans today, and before George Bush they have taken money from the Koch Brothers. In return for that money Koch have increased their influence not only in Washington but throughout the United States in practically every state.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

ENRD
MONDAY, APRIL 9, 2001
(202) 514-2008
TDD (202) 514-1888

KOCH PLEADS GUILTY TO COVERING UP ENVIRONMENTAL

VIOLATIONS AT TEXAS OIL REFINERY

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Koch Petroleum Group, L.P. pled guilty today to covering up environmental violations at its oil refinery in Corpus Christi, Texas.

Under the plea agreement, Koch will pay a total of $20 million dollars: $10 million in criminal fines and $10 million for special projects to improve the environment in Corpus Christi – a record amount imposed in…

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April 10, 2012

by Ben Hoffman

FortLeft

The Republicans will campaign on the idea that lowing taxes on the wealthy (I think Romney wants to keep the Bush tax cuts and even cut more) creates jobs because the money the wealthy do not pay in taxes goes to create jobs.  Fay Paxton has looked at the history of job creation and posted an analysis on Winning Progressive.   Her conclusion:  Democrats create more jobs.  These charts describe private sector job creation.

Yes, the first months of the Obama Administration were rough, but as the chart shows, we started bleeding jobs under George W. Bush.

Ronald Reagan wins among Republicans, but he wasn’t afraid of raising taxes.

So what about federal public sector jobs?  The Republicans always claim that the Democrats are the party of big government.  Is this true?  Paxton says

Republicans talk about being conservatives who believe in small government and reducing the federal workforce. The…

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April 6, 2012

Time For Thomas to Recuse Himself

by Ben Hoffman
April 6, 2012

Who does God prefer? Kind atheists?

by Ben Hoffman

Millard Fillmore's Bathtub

Actual photo, from the Rose City Park United Methodist Church, in Portland, Oregon.

The sign got a mention in Larry Bingham’s column in The Oregonian, and he says it’s making more headlines.

The Rose City Park United Methodist Church minister’s recent sign, which says “God Prefers Kind Atheists over Hateful Christians” is making headlines all over the place.

My colleague, Religion Writer Nancy Haught, cites it in her story on the shifting terminology between “religion” and “Christian.” And The Christian Post also has a story.

Tip of the old scrub brush to Kathy Paxton-Williams.

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April 6, 2012

Noodles In The Sand

by Ben Hoffman
April 6, 2012

Bagley’s cartoon on criticizing Obamacare

by Ben Hoffman

Millard Fillmore's Bathtub

Generally the Pulitzer Prize committees look at specific works submitted by candidates.  Bagley‘s day-in, day-out brilliance must make it difficult for editors to choose what to nominate, no?

This cartoon is just perfect, in so many ways:

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