Archive for November 21st, 2011
These are my links for November 21st from 08:13 to 14:38:
- Boehner blames Obama for failure of supercommittee to reach a deal – House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) is blaming President Obama for the failure of the congressional supercommittee to reach a deal for cutting the federal deficit.The Speaker’s office sent out a memo Monday morning that says the supercommittee “was unable to reach agreement because President Obama and Washington Democrats insisted on dramatic tax hikes on American job creators, which would make our economy worse.”The memo from Boehner’s office says Obama set the deficit panel up for failure by demanding it become the vehicle for economic stimulus.
“The President designed a political strategy that doomed the committee to failure first by insisting the committee include $450 billion of his failed stimulus policies in any agreement, making deficit reduction much harder and second by issuing a veto threat warning he would not accept an agreement that did not include a job-killing tax increase,” the memo obtained by The Hill states.
The memo was not signed by the Speaker, as is customary for messages that come directly from him.
- Super Committee Fails to Reach Deficit Agreement – The bipartisan congressional committee tasked with finding at least $1.2 trillion in deficit reduction announced on Monday it cannot reach agreement by the Wednesday deadline, a stark if not unexpected admission that its efforts have ended in failure.”After months of hard work and intense deliberations, we have come to the conclusion today that it will not be possible to make any bipartisan agreement available to the public before the committee’s deadline,” the co-chairs, Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, and Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., said.The declaration came late Monday afternoon in a written statement from the 12-member Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction despite last-second discussions in closed-door meetings.
The committee, in the end, could not resolve that Republicans would not go as far as Democrats wanted on allowing more revenue raisers, and Democrats did not want to move on entitlement reforms. Intense messaging by both political parties on which was more to blame is surely to spill out for days, if not months.
The super panel was created with extraordinary, fast-track powers this summer under the law agreed to by Republicans and Democrats during the debt ceiling crisis. That same law now says its failure will trigger $1.2 trillion in automatic cuts over 10 years, starting in 2013. That so-called sequestration is to include cuts to Pentagon spending.
- When Did Liberals Become So Unreasonable? – If we trace liberal disappointment with President Obama to its origins, to try to pinpoint the moment when his crestfallen supporters realized that this was Not Change They Could Believe In, the souring probably began on December 17, 2008, when Obama announced that conservative Evangelical pastor Rick Warren would speak at his inauguration. “Abominable,” fumed John Aravosis on AmericaBlog. “Obama’s ‘inclusiveness’ mantra always seems to head only in one direction—an excuse to scorn progressives and embrace the Right,” seethed Salon’s Glenn Greenwald. On MSNBC, Rachel Maddow rode the story almost nightly: “I think the problem is getting larger for Barack Obama.” Negative 34 days into the start of the Obama presidency, the honeymoon was over.Since then, the liberal gloom has only deepened, as Obama compromise alternated with Obama failure. Liberals speak of Obama in unceasingly despairing terms. “I’m exhausted [from] defending you,” one supporter confessed to Obama at a town-hall meeting last year.“We are all incredibly frustrated,” Justin Ruben, MoveOn’s executive director, told the Washington Post in September. “I’m disappointed in Obama,” complained Steve Jobs, according to Walter Isaacson’s new biography. The assessments appear equally morose among the most left-wing and the most moderate of Obama’s supporters, among opinion leaders and rank-and-file voters. In early 2004, Democrats, by a 25-point margin, described themselves as “more enthusiastic than usual about voting.” At the beginning of 2008, the margin had shot up to over 60 percentage points. Now as many Democrats say they’re less enthusiastic about voting as say they’re more enthusiastic.
- We’ve All Gone Crazy – Unlike David Brooks — I walk out of room the minute he starts talking — David Frum is someone I consider a friend, which causes me to get a lot of heat from some of my conservative friends, including those friends whom Frum has attacked by name.Frum stubbornly believes he’s right (and also, Right), and any attempt to argue him out of his position is doomed to failure, simply because it’s his position and he feels honor-bound to defend it. Being rather mule-headed myself, I can relate to that, even when I know Frum is wrong, wrong, wrong (as is anyone who disagrees with me). However, I believe the point of arguments among conservatives is always to find the best way to stomp liberalism into smithereens. And I wish Frum would stop carping so much about conservatives, and start stomping some liberals.Read it all
- David Frum on the GOP’s Lost Sense of Reality – It’s a very strange experience to have your friends think you’ve gone crazy. Some will tell you so. Others will indulgently humor you. Still others will avoid you. More than a few will demand that the authorities do something to get you off the streets. During one unpleasant moment after I was fired from the think tank where I’d worked for the previous seven years, I tried to reassure my wife with an old cliché: “The great thing about an experience like this is that you learn who your friends really are.” She answered, “I was happier when I didn’t know.”It’s possible that my friends are right. I don’t think so—but then, crazy people never do. So let me put the case to you.I’ve been a Republican all my adult life. I have worked on the editorial page of The Wall Street Journal, at Forbes magazine, at the Manhattan and American Enterprise Institutes, as a speechwriter in the George W. Bush administration. I believe in free markets, low taxes, reasonable regulation, and limited government. I voted for John McCain in 2008, and I have strongly criticized the major policy decisions of the Obama administration. But as I contemplate my party and my movement in 2011, I see things I simply cannot support.
- Gallup poll: Is the Gingrich surge overrated? – In the latest Gallup GOP national poll, Mitt Romney (21 percent) and Newt Gingrich (22 percent) are in a statistical tie among registered Republican and Republican-leaning voters. Herman Cain has dropped to third (16 percent), with Texas Gov. Rick Perry (8 percent) now behind even Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) (9 percent).What is interesting is the Gingrich surge at the onset of his first round of rigorous scrutiny has him much lower than the peak for Perry (29 percent). A GOP operative says he’s not surprised. “[Gingrich is] more of a known commodity, and not always in a good sense. Therefore he’s less likely to see a full-scale swoon.” Republican consultant Tony Fratto says the terrain is also different now than when Perry entered with a splash. He tells me, “Perry and Cain haven’t lost all of their elevated support, just part. So there’s less for Gingrich to capture. And Romney’s support stays fairly consistent.”Probably……
- Will GOP NLRB Member Resign to Shut Down Labor Agency? – On November 30, the National Labor Relations Board is scheduled to vote on proposed rule changes that would speed up union elections by disallowing some appeals until after a workplace vote occurs. Employers typically aim to delay an election so that they can use the time to intimidate employees to voting against a union.But that vote may never take place, because some conservative members of Congress are pushing a plan that would force the NLRB, which is an independent federal agency tasked with enforcing labor law, to shut down. There are currently three people serving on the NLRB; if that is reduced by one, the body will be unable to issue valid rulings.In New Process Steel, L.P. vs National Labor Relations Board, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2010 that the NLRB cannot decide cases with only two members on the NLRB. For 27 months, during the last year of President Bush’s term and the first 14 months of the Obama administration, the NLRB only had two members (a Democrat and a Republican). The two members agreed to work together on common sense cases where they could easily agree on a ruling; they passed judgment in nearly 600 cases.
But the Supreme Court invalidated all those rulings because they were made with only two members. Therefore, some conservative politicians such as South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley and prominent right-wing blogs such as RedState.com are pushing for Republican NLRB Board Member Brian Hayes to resign before the vote for the rules is issued on November 30, which would effectively shut down the agency.
- Spirit Airlines’ deceptive Tweets land a U.S. fine – MarketWatch – Oh MY! | RT @WSJ:Spirit Airlines has been fined $50,000 for tweets advertising $9 fares that didn’t disclose add’l fees
- Federal lawmakers restore $12.5 million to program for methamphetamine lab cleanup – The war on methamphetamine has gotten some support from Congress — millions of dollars to clean up the toxic waste generated by clandestine meth labs.President Barack Obama signed a wide-ranging appropriations bill Friday that included the restoration of $12.5 million for meth lab cleanup.0
“It’s an awesome thing,” said Tommy Farmer, state meth task force coordinator for Tennessee, the state that led the nation in the number of meth labs in 2010. “It keeps us in the fight so we can combat these things.”
The measure restores funding lost in February, when federal meth lab cleanup money through the Community Oriented Policing Services program ran out, and was not renewed. The program provided $19.2 million for meth lab cleanup in 2010.
- Why Can’t Newspapers Make Money Online? – The bottom line is this: the reason that newspapers can’t make money is because they’re pricing themselves out of the market. It’s true that newspaper circulation has declined due to competition of various new media (check out Newspaper Death Watch if you really want to get depressed), and newspaper ad expenditures have declined along with them since 2001. But the real problem seems to be that newspapers have been way too slow in responding to competitive pressures by lowering their ad rates to a competitive level. Lulled into complacency by decades (if not centuries) of dominating the advertising industry, they’ve failed to recognize that when it comes to advertiser value, they’ve long since fallen from the top spot. The advantages they once had based on geographic exclusivity, readership, and exclusive content have been eliminated by the rise of the web. Today you can get your news from a huge number of sources other than the local bundle of papers tossed on your doorstep; and you (as a consumer) can get it for free. Craigslist and Facebook and Yelp and blogs and job listing sites and myriad other sources of local content have drained away readership and, more importantly, have all but negated the exclusive lock that newspapers used to have on local content. Advertisers who want to reach local audiences now have a huge amount of options and don’t have to be held hostage to the rates newspapers got used to charging.“News” has now become a commodity, yet the papers continue to charge premium prices. Unless they can figure out how to pare down costs, price themselves competitively, and, more importantly, offer content that’s worth paying for (see The Wall Street Journal), desperation tactics such as paywalls are only going to hasten the inevitable decline.
- Dilbert November 20, 2011 – To Catch a Thief » Flap’s California Blog – Dilbert November 20, 2011 – To Catch a Thief
- President 2012: Newt Gingrich – Really? | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – President 2012: Newt Gingrich – Really? #tcot #catcot
- George Will | Newt Gingrich | Ron Paul | Mediaite – George Will Dismisses Newt Gingrich, Scoffs At Idea That He Is A ‘Historian’ #tcot
- Democrats Pray for Newt – Democrats Pray for Newt #tcot
- (500) http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/right-turn/post/conservatives-shouldnt-kid-themselves-about-newt/2011/11/20/gIQA9RhhhN_blog.html – Conservatives shouldn’t kid themselves about Newt #tcot #teaparty
- Only 12% Expect Value of Their Home To Increase In Next Year – Rasmussen Reports™ – Poll Watch: Only 12% Expect Value of Their Home To Increase In Next Year #tcot
- Untitled (http://www.nytimes.com/glogin?URI=http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/21/us/politics/deficit-deal-fell-apart-after-seeming-agreement.html&OQ=_rQ3D4Q26adxnnlQ3D1Q26pagewantedQ3DallQ26adxnnlxQ3D1321891541-qqfPM1wiKQ51yi2VQ2BBJWqRqAQ26utm_sourceQ3Dtwitt – Deficit Deal Fell Apart After Seeming Agreement
- Do Overweight People Eat LESS Often? | Smiles For A Lifetime – Temporary (Locum Tenens) Dentistry – Do Overweight People Eat LESS Often?
- Where Michigan stands on 2012 race for president | Detroit Free Press | freep.com – President 2012 Michigan Poll Watch: Romney 46% Vs. Obama 41%
- The Morning Flap: November 21, 2011 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – The Morning Flap: November 21, 2011 #tcot #catcot
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According to the latest Gallup Poll.
Americans have grown a bit more critical over the past month of the methods used by Occupy Wall Street protesters; however, their overall view of the movement and position on its goals have not changed. The majority of Americans, 53%, say they neither support nor oppose the movement, while supporters continue to slightly outnumber opponents.
The Nov. 19-20 USA Today/Gallup poll finds Americans’ views about the goals of the Occupy Wall Street movement similar to what they were in October, with 25% approving and 16% disapproving.
Americans are tired of the protests and want some action from their elected officials. Above all else voters want change and this is bad for incumbents going into an election year, including the President.
I am really not surprised that this “Occupy” movement has not gathered any steam.
Election season is upon us and it is time for choosing.
At the same time, Americans have grown slightly more critical of the protests themselves, with more now disapproving than approving of the way the protests are being conducted, 31% vs. 20%. In October, the balance of opinion on this question tilted slightly positive.
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Besides George Will’s comments above and the fact that the Democrat’s salivate when mentioning Newt Gingrich as the Republican nominee, there is this sobering piece from Jennifer Rubin.
Some conservatives seem to have taken leave of their senses and/or developed a bad case of amnesia when it comes to Newt Gingrich. He’s credited with “leading the conservative movement for 25 years.” (Really? After he was booted from the speakership, what did he do to further conservative values and causes?) He’s labeled as a conviction conservative. (Really? Was hawking Freddie Mac and ethanol subsidies a pro-conservative or a pro-Newt endeavor?) He’s credited with grand accomplishments as speaker of the House. (Really? He lost the government-shutdown standoff to Bill Clinton and lambasted conservatives who objected to his penchant for excessive compromise.) He’s more mature and sober. they say. (Really? Attacking Rep. Paul Ryan for “rightwing social engineering” wasn’t exactly a responsible move.)
I really don’t think that Newt can be considered as a viable candidate.
It looks to me that the GOP should just get it over with and nominate Mitt Romney – RomneyCare and Flip Flop warts and all.
At least with Mitt, you know what you are getting…..
Tags: George Will
, Mitt Romney
, Newt Gingrich
, President 2012
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These are my links for November 18th through November 21st:
- Parties brace for ‘super’ fallout – Now, both parties are quickly trying to figure out how to turn the committee’s embarrassing failure into a political win for their side.
The Democratic message: We stood up to Republicans looking to gut Social Security, slash Medicare and permanently extend the Bush-era tax cuts for high income Americans.
The Republican counterattack: Democrats wanted little more than tax increases and refused to consider changes to deficit-driving health care entitlements. Both sides are positioning themselves as the party that compromised and sought a middle-ground.
But will this political posturing work for a Congress that had a 9 percent approval rating in one recent poll? Or will it just back fire with voters? Many lawmakers are worried about what the supercommittee has wrought for both sides.
- Lawmakers already taking aim at auto-cuts – Failure by Congress’ debt-cutting supercommittee to recommend $1.2 trillion in savings by Wednesday is supposed to automatically trigger spending cuts in the same amount to accomplish that job.
But the same legislators who concocted that budgetary booby trap just four months ago could end up spending the 2012 election year and beyond battling over defusing it.
Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., say they are writing legislation to prevent what they say would be devastating cuts to the military. House Republicans are exploring a similar move. Democrats maintain they won’t let domestic programs be the sole source of savings.
- Deficit Deal Fell Apart After Seeming Agreement – Called away from dinner tables, the Jets-Patriots game on television and, in one case, a soccer team party, several Democratic members of the special Congressional committee on deficit reduction raced to the office of Senator Patty Murray for a hasty 8:30 meeting to discuss the outlines of a potential agreement. Crucially, it appeared to have the backing of at least one Republican on the 12-member panel even though it included a tax increase.
As the members spoke, they began to see the outlines of a deal, tentatively agreeing on tax rates, revenues, spending cuts and changes to Social Security and Medicare, according to interviews with members of the committee and their aides.
- Supercommittee blame everywhere – A full-scale blame game erupted into public view Sunday after nearly three months of secretive negotiations on the supercommittee that failed to resolve an impasse to cut at least $1.2 trillion in deficits over the next decade.
Fanning out across the Sunday talk shows just hours before the supercommittee’s deadline, Republicans insisted that Democrats wanted to institute a $1 trillion tax hike, while Democrats argued that the GOP wanted to gut popular entitlements and protect the rich. And both sides insisted they were willing to compromise when the other refused to move off their partisan positions.
- Where in the world is Obama? – The president was in Hawaii while the supercommittee hit stall speed. What is new about this? Very little.
Throughout his term, President Obama has avoided leading on the issue of fiscal responsibility. He walked away from his own commission, the one led by former Sen. Alan Simpson (R-Wyo.) and former White House Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles, when he found its report filled with inconvenient choices.
Now in a week when leadership is needed to push this critical committee to do something big and bring the nation’s fiscal house back into order, the president once again disappears. It causes one to wonder, why?
- Obama has work cut out for him in order to win Michigan in 2012 – President Barack Obama says he saved Michigan’s auto industry, but that isn’t helping his 2012 re-election bid in Macomb and Oakland counties, where Republican front-runner Mitt Romney’s strength helps give him a 5-point lead in the state a year before the election, a Free Press poll shows.
There’s time for the president to woo voters, but without the two key suburban Detroit counties, it would be difficult for Obama to win Michigan, a state whose voters have backed Democratic candidates in the last five presidential elections.
In a head-to-head matchup statewide, Romney tops Obama 46%-41% in the poll.
In Macomb, where Obama received 53% of the vote in 2008, the president trails Romney, 68%-20%. Even controlling for a high margin of error because of a small sample size in the county, Obama trails Romney in Macomb by at least 20 percentage points.
- Methamphetamine Use Linked to Schizophrenia – Heavy methamphetamine use may be associated with an increased risk for schizophrenia, new research suggests.
A large cohort study of California inpatients without a history of psychiatric disorders found that those with methamphetamine-related conditions were 9 times more likely to have a subsequent schizophrenia diagnosis than non–drug users, and an almost 1.5- to 3-fold diagnosis risk compared with heavy users of cocaine and opioids, but not cannabis.
“This provides the first world-wide evidence for a long-standing debate that suggests that methamphetamines may facilitate the development of schizophrenia in a small subset of users,” lead author Russell C. Callaghan, PhD, research scientist at the Center for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in Toronto, Canada, told Medscape Medical News.
“Methamphetamine users often present to clinical and emergency department settings with psychosis. And our findings suggest that these people need to be monitored closely for an attenuation of their psychotic symptoms. Also, given the side effects with antipsychotic medications, I think we really need to prescribe those treatments judiciously,” said Dr. Callaghan.
He added that the study findings do not apply to patients who take lower and controlled doses of amphetamines for medical purposes, such as for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.
- How I ended up leaving Poynter JIMROMENESKO.COM – “How did this go off the rails?” Poynter’s attorney asked me during a Nov. 12 phone conversation about my threat to file a cease and desist order against the institute for using my name on their website after being taken off the payroll.
Read it all
- @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-11-20 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-11-20 #tcot #catcot
- Capitol Alert: Think Long coalition to propose California tax overhaul – California Think Long Tax Increase = Think STUPID and will fail at polls. Think Long = bipartisan #FAIL
- Rep. Elton Gallegly: Our Friends in Israel Deserve Better | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Rep. Elton Gallegly: Our Friends in Israel Deserve Better #tcot #catcot
- foursquare :: Gregory Flap @ Ronnie’s Diner – With LA Roadrunner’s Alice, Nancy, Tara, Mary after 13 Miles (@ Ronnie’s Diner)
- Off soon to Venice Beach with the LA Roadrunner’s & … on Twitpic – Off soon to Venice Beach with the LA Roadrunner’s & LA Marathon Training. Today = 13 miles and then Ronnie’s Diner
- @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-11-19 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-11-19 #tcot #catcot
- U.S. Facing What Some Call a Dental Crisis – Roughly half of all Americans don’t have dental insurance, and PBS NewsHour correspondent Betty Ann Bowser is calling it a dental crisis. She states in the report that:
The federal government has identified more than 4,500 areas of this country, like Grundy, Va., where there are not enough dentists. It says nearly 10,000 new providers are needed to meet the need.
The state of dentistry today is at a point where many are calling for change, and soon.
- Video: Millions of Americans Face Life Without Dental Care – The lack of access to dental care is a problem that affects millions of Americans. Health correspondent Betty Ann Bowser reports.
- Is General Dentistry Dead? – Correct. The ADA has been, and still is against a mid-level provider. Feeling that the patient deserves treatment by a dentist.
The push for a mid-level has come from a combination of legislators being pushed by “patient advocacy groups” (then again one can ask them the question if they’ve ever actually asked the folks their apparently advocating for if THEY want to be treated by a “second tier” provider or a dentist – answer – they haven’t). Groups such a Kellog and Pew who tend to fund many of these studies when looked at closely, aren’t exactly the most impartial of groups (remember who with a research paper one of the 1st things yu should do is not look at the results, but look at who is funding the research in the 1st place to see if from the start the potential for bias exists).
Additionally on the legislative front, if you ever have the chance to talk with one of your elected officials about this (and I would encourage you to, since they like to listen) is that what dentistry needs to do is not get into the whole “access to care” issue, but the UTILIZATION of care discussion. Access to care in theory would provide access to 100% of people. However, the reality is that even with *cough*free*cough* care the UTILIZATION rate is at best about 60%. The reality is that unless your talking a military style system where going to the dentist is mandatory, there is a very significant portion of the populaton that will not seek out dental care (unless its an EXTREME emergency situation) no matter what. There is plenty of dentists available to handle to demands of the populatin with its current utilizaton rates. Trying to develop a system for 100% access will just end up wasting dollars on that significant population that won’t seek care. If those dollars are directed at existing providers to make the reimbursement rates FAIR, that will have a much greater impact on access. The bottomline is that the overhead for a mid level won’t be any less than that for a dentist, and if a midlevel is getting the same rates for a procedure as a dentist is (and one would sumise that would be the case since in the medical world a nurse practitioner gets the same reimbursement for suturing up a laceration as an MD/DO does) then they’ll have te same problems meeting overhead as a dentist would. The key is that dentistry, when talking about this issue needs to stick to the objective data, which can be tough when the opposing side tends to have mor emtoional “data” than objective data
- The Afternoon Flap: November 18, 2011 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – The Afternoon Flap: November 18, 2011 #tcot #catcot
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