Archive for September 26th, 2011
About damn time.
Let’s get this issue decided before it destroys more of the American economy.
The Obama administration chose not to ask the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals to re-hear a pivotal health reform case Monday, signaling that it’s going to ask the Supreme Court to decide whether President Barack Obama’s health reform law is constitutional.
The move puts the Supreme Court in the difficult position of having to decide whether to take the highly politically charged case in the middle of the presidential election.
The Justice Department is expected to ask the court to overturn an August decision by a panel of three judges in the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals that found the law’s requirement to buy insurance is unconstitutional. The suit was brought by 26 states, the National Federation of Independent Business, and several individuals.
Since the ruling, the Justice Department had until Monday to ask the entire 11th Circuit to review the case. Administration lawyers didn’t file the paperwork by the 5 p.m. deadline, so the ruling would stand unless the Justice Department asks the Supreme Court to step in.
The petition isn’t due until November, and the administration could get an extension.
Opponents of the law had expected the government to ask for the so-called en banc hearing to delay a ruling by the Supreme Court.
“The president and solicitor general deserve full credit for refusing to employ delaying tactics in this pressing constitutional controversy,” said Randy E. Barnett, a Georgetown Law professor who is working with the plaintiffs.
But former acting Solicitor General Walter Dellinger, who has worked on briefs in support of the legislation, said the move should be read as a sign of confidence from the administration.
“This confirms what I had already concluded: That the government is confident that it’s going to prevail in the Supreme Court and would like to have a decision sooner rather than later,” Dellinger told POLITICO.
The issue of the constitutionality of the individual mandate has been widely expected to be decided by the Supreme Court. The key question has been the timing.
So, it looks like the Supremes will take up the case during this year’s term and render a decision during the Presidential election. If SCOTUS accepts the case by January, it could be heard in the Spring with a decision sometime in June.
ObamaCare WILL be an issue during the Presidential campaign season and if SCOTUS were to rule the law constitutional, it could galvanize the RIGHT to defeat President Obama in November.
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These are my links for September 23rd through September 26th:
- Here comes another Koch/Tea Party smear – Evidence was found four years ago that other KGF employees had paid bribes to obtain business. An investigation was begun, and Egorova-Farines was one of the investigators. Ultimately, more than two dozen people were either terminated or allowed to resign.
Koch USA officials say they were as surprised and angered as anybody else when they were first apprised of the bribery allegations, and moved as quickly as possible to get to the bottom of the situation and fix it.
But, during this period, Egorova-Farines grew progressively unhappy with KGF, allegations of discrimination were lodged, and her case went to the Employment Tribunal of Paris.
All of Egorova-Farines' claims were dismissed. She appealed and the decision was overturned on a technicality. KGF and Egorova-Farines then settled out of court.
I spent a lot of my reporting years working with whistleblowers, mainly within the government, and generally find them admirable. But, like the rest of us, they're just human and can have very mixed motives, of which careful journalists must always be aware.
A former U.S. government official of my acquaintance was approached recently by one of the Bloomberg reporters working on a Koch investigative piece. After some conversation about the French case, the reporter said, "the other interesting thing here is Koch has strong ties to the Tea Party."
When the official asked what the Tea Party had to do with French bribery allegations, the reporter dropped the topic.
I've also had occasion to meet a lot of Bloomberg journalists over the years and have been unfailingly impressed by their professionalism. But they're human, too, and can make mistakes.
Joining the rampant Koch-bashing would be a mistake.
- Koch addicts seek another hit – As The Washington Examiner reported last week, Bloomberg Markets appears to be on the verge of dropping a lengthy treatise on the Kansas-based energy conglomerate Koch Industries.
According to an individual interviewed by Bloomberg (who spoke to me on the condition of anonymity), much of the focus will likely be devoted to re-litigating past legal peccadilloes. But the piece may also reveal at least one previously unreported controversy: Koch Industries’ connection to the sale of petroleum industry equipment in Iran in the early-to-mid 2000s.
Koch currently has a policy prohibiting its subsidiaries from doing business in Iran, and the past sales (some of which likely involved state-owned Iranian companies) appear to have been conducted by a foreign subsidiary of a subsidiary of Koch.
Still, this comes on the heels of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s speech to the UN General Assembly — and at a time when Tehran’s nuclear ambitions are receiving increased attention.
All of this, of course, means the story could provide political fodder to Koch’s political enemies — which are legion. (In 2005, you might recall, Halliburton, the company once run by former Vice President Dick Cheney, also came under fire for doing business in Iran.)
In reality, the revelation isn’t terribly newsworthy. While U.S. law bans American companies from making direct sales in Iran, foreign subsidiaries of multinational corporations may do so under certain circumstances. And many of them do.
Dozens of multinational companies — including household names like General Electric, Exxon Mobil, Hewlett Packard, Caterpillar, and Honeywell — conducted business in Iran during the time period. For example, a 2010 New York Times analysis identified 74 corporations — many of whom received government contracts — that have conducted business in Iran over the last decade.
Regardless of whether or not one finds this troubling, the fact that the practice was ubiquitous raises an obvious question: Why is Bloomberg singling out Koch?
The answer seems pretty obvious.
Read it all
- Ryan to put ‘replace’ back in ‘repeal and replace’ | Campaign 2012 – Ryan to put 'replace' back in 'repeal and replace' | Campaign 2012
- foursquare – 10 miles and now Breakfast at Ronnie's with Alice and Tara (@ Ronnie's Diner)
- Untitled (https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-dKap5IWFQ8c/Tn3EPSyF02I/AAAAAAAAATg/9blXVHx-dB4/CIMG0150.jpg) – Off soon to LA Marathon training with LA Roadrunners for 10 easy miles. Ronnie's Diner after.
- @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-09-24 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-09-24 #tcot #catcot
- Ryan to put ‘replace’ back in ‘repeal and replace’ | Campaign 2012 – Ryan to put 'replace' back in 'repeal and replace' | Campaign 2012
- (500) http://flapsblog.org/2011/09/23/dilbert-september-23-2011-listen/?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter – Dilbert September 23, 2011 – Listen
- Ryan to put ‘replace’ back in ‘repeal and replace’ | Campaign 2012 – RT @philipaklein: RT @conncarroll: @RepPaulRyan will give major speech outlining alternative to Obamacare Tuesday
- Flap’s Dentistry Blog: Los Angeles Roadrunners: My Saturday Mornings for the Next Six Months – Los Angeles Roadrunners: My Saturday Mornings for the Next Six Months
- Poll Watch: Obama Rated Same or Worse Than Bush – Obama Much Worse Than Clinton | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Poll Watch: Obama Rated Same or Worse Than Bush – Obama Much Worse Than Clinton #tcot #catcot
- 43% of Twitter Users Access Twitter From a Mobile Phone [Data] – 43% of Twitter Users Access Twitter From a Mobile Phone
- 43% of Twitter Users Access Twitter From a Mobile Phone – The latest data on mobile phone usage is out, and the numbers show that mobile isn't slowing down. And where inbound marketing is concerned, some of the key mobile data centers around how people are using their phones to access content and social media.
MarketingCharts' mobile research has found that people are increasingly using their mobile phones to access content on browsers, apps, and social networks:
In March 2011, nearly 39% of US mobile subscribers were browsing the internet using their mobile device. That's up by 2.2 percentage points from just 3 months prior.
Mobile apps are almost as popular as browsers; 37% of subscribers used downloaded apps.
Subscribers are also increasingly using social networks on their phones. In March, 27.3% indicated they used a social network on their mobile phone, up from 24.7% just 3 months prior.
- Flap’s California Morning Collection: September 23, 2011 » Flap’s California Blog – Flap’s California Morning Collection: September 23, 2011
- Flap’s Links and Comments for September 20th through September 23rd | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Flap’s Links and Comments for September 20th through September 23rd #tcot #catcot
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Posted by Flap in Facebook, tags: Facebook
OK. Facebook is a big company with many employees and will exert its influence much like other big corporations.
Facebook confirmed it filed paperwork on Monday to start its own political action committee.
“FB PAC will give our employees a way to make their voice heard in the political process by supporting candidates who share our goals of promoting the value of innovation to our economy while giving people the power to share and make the world more open and connected,” said a spokesman via email.
The firm acknowledged the formation of the PAC after reports emerged of Facebook registering the domain names FBPAC.org and FBPAC.us. Creating a PAC is just the latest step in Facebook’s continued expansion of its presence in Washington, but this is the first time the firm will back candidates.
Facebook is likely looking to avoid the type of Washington scrutiny that has affected other firms like Microsoft and Google, which is currently under a Federal Trade Commission antitrust probe. The perception Google was previously sympathetic towards Democrats hasn’t helped with the GOP in charge of the House.
Facebook executives like other Silicon Valley/Northern California firms probably lean LEFT, but will want to avoid the stigma of playing on one side and taking the heat. But, the PAC will be a vehicle for Facebook employees to support the candidates that support their company – just like Apple Computer or Verizon.
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New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie answers a question as he and Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels speak to a gathering at Rider University in Lawrenceville, N.J. , Thursday, Sept. 22, 2011
I hope Christie decides to run.
Former New Jersey Gov. Tom Kean (R), who has known Chris Christie since he was a teenager, tells National Reviewthat the governor is “very seriously” considering a presidential bid.Said Kean: “It’s real. He’s giving it a lot of thought. I think the odds are a lot better now than they were a couple weeks ago.”
He added: “More and more people are talking to him. He’s getting appeals from major figures around the country. He is the best speaker I may have ever heard in politics.”
The LEFT has already researched who are the money people possibly behind a Christie campaign.
These money folks are pretty much the financiers of Rudy Giuliani’s campaign in 2008, especially Paul Singer.
New York hedge fund billionaire Paul Singer is also named by Politico as one of the leaders of the latest Draft Christie movement. Singer was a major fundraiser for both George W. Bush’s and Rudy Giuliani’s presidential campaigns. He also bankrolled an unsuccessful 2007 effort in California to try to pass a ballot measure ending the winner-takes-all system for California’s electoral votes, which would provide a massive boost to Republican presidential candidates. Like Langone, he has a moderate streak as well: he helped fund efforts to pass New York’s landmark law allowing same sex marriage this year.
If the funding is in place and Rudy Giuliani helps Christie with NE GOP primary delegates and Florida, the campaign, even though late in arriving, will be winnable.
Moreover, Christie has at least two staff members who worked for Giuliani’s 2008 campaign: Maria Comella (Rudy’s traveling communications director) and Michael DuHaime (Giuliani’s campaign manager).
Governor Christie will be out in California tomorrow evening speaking at the Reagan Presidential Library.
So, stay tuned…..
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Electoral College vote map of Larry Sabato
According to the latest Roanoke College Poll.
President Obama trails some potential Republican opponents, but he leads others. The generic (unnamed) Republican leads Obama 41% to 33%; Mitt Romney leads 45% to 37%; and Rick Perry leads by an statistically insignificant 42% to 40%. At the same time, Obama leads potential opponents Michele Bachmann (46% to 35%), Ron Paul (43% to 33%), and Sarah Palin (50% to 31%). Looking only at registered voters, none of those margins change by more than 1 percent and several do not change at all.
The GOP Presidential contenders must be pleased that in this key battleground state that they are either close or leading the incumbent President. President Obama’s approval rating is only 39% in Virginia (54% disapproval) and it is obvious that either Mitt Romney or Rick Perry will have a good chance of picking up those needed Electoral College votes against Obama.
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