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share save 120 16 The Morning Flap: December 13, 2012

California Blue Shield The Morning Flap: December 13, 2012

These are my links for December 12th through December 13th:

  • The Republican brand problem – One thing comes through loud and clear in the new NBC/Wall Street Journal national poll: Republicans have a major brand problem.Consider the following findings in the NBC/WSJ poll:* Asked an open-ended question as to what single word or short phrase people would use to describe the Republican Party, 65 percent of the responses were negative, while just 17 percent were positive. (For Democrats, 35 percent were positive, while 37 percent were negative.) Among the most oft-mentioned phrases used to describe Republicans: “bad/weak/negative” (8 percent), “uncompromising/need to work together” (6 percent) and “broken/disorganized/lost” (6 percent). So, that happened.* The poll tested the positive and negative ratings for 11 politicians or political institutions. The lowest rated — in terms of the differential between positive and negative ratings — was the Republican Party, with a 30 percent positive score and a 45 percent negative score. Of the five worst positive-to-negative ratios, Republicans claimed four of them. (The lone exception: Susan Rice with a 20 positive/24 percent net-negative score.)

    * When asked who they trusted more in “handling the fiscal cliff,” 38 percent named President Obama while just 19 percent named House Speaker John Boehner and Republicans in Congress. (Fourteen percent said they trusted both equally, and another 28 percent said they trusted neither side.)

    What those numbers make clear is that the Republican brand is badly damaged. It is regarded by too many people as an uncompromising relic of the past — a party that lacks new ideas and is, therefore, forced to largely serve as a blockade to the other side. (That’s the biggest reason, by the way, why Republicans should be interested in compromising on the fiscal cliff. They gap between how Obama is regarded and how they are seen is enough to make going over the cliff a genuine political loser for them.)

  • California prison phychiatrist under investigation for $800,000 pay – After raking in half a million dollars for being “on call,” California’s top paid public employee of 2011 — a prison psychiatrist from Newark — has been suspended with pay for allegedly falsifying time records, officials said Tuesday.Dr. Mohammad Safi, 54, was paid more than $803,000 last year as a supervising senior psychiatrist at a Department of State Hospitals facility within Salinas Valley State Prison in Monterey County, records show.That amount included more than $503,000 for on-call pay — in Safi’s case being available to respond quickly to emergencies.His suspension was first reported Wednesday by Bloomberg News, which published an extensive analysis of state government pay that ranked California tops in the nation. It showed Safi was paid more than twice as much as any state psychiatrist in the 12 states Bloomberg examined.
  • California lawmaker Roger Hernandez proposes benefits for undocumented immigrants – A California lawmaker wants to expand government benefits for hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants who qualify for a new federal work-permit program.Assemblyman Roger Hernandez (D-West Covina) introduced legislation this week aimed at illegal immigrants who are part of an Obama administration protocol that allows undocumented immigrants who came to the United States before they were 16, and who are now 30 or younger and meet certain other criteria, to obtain work permits.The bill, AB 35, would enable those immigrants to obtain state identification cards and receive unemployment benefits and state-administered medical services. This year, Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law a measure that will allow that group of young immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses.
  • Fiscal Cliff Creates Problems That Don’t Faze Obama – Is Barack Obama bluffing when he threatens to go over the fiscal cliff if Republicans refuse to agree to higher tax rates on high earners?Some analysts think so. Keith Hennessey, a former top staffer for the Bush White House and Senate Republicans and a veteran of budget negotiations, argues that Obama’s whole second term would be blighted if he allows the fiscal cliff tax increases and sequestration budget cuts to take place next month.
  • Blue Shield of California seeks rate hikes up to 20% – Health insurer Blue Shield of California wants to raise rates as much as 20% for some individual policyholders, prompting calls for the nonprofit to use some of its record-high reserve of $3.9 billion to hold down premiums.In filings with state regulators, Blue Shield is seeking an average rate increase of 12% for more than 300,000 customers, effective in March, with a maximum increase of 20%.Some consumer advocates and healthcare economists say Blue Shield shouldn’t be raising rates that high when it has stockpiled so much cash. The company’s surplus is nearly three times as much as the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Assn. requires its member insurers to hold to cover future claims.”Blue Shield is sitting on a huge surplus that is beyond what is required or necessary,” said Laurie Sobel, a senior attorney for Consumers Union in San Francisco. “It should be used to hold down rate increases when it hits these extraordinary levels.”

    California officials can take into account an insurer’s amount of surplus, among many other factors, when determining whether they think a rate increase is reasonable. Both the California insurance commissioner and the state Department of Managed Health Care are reviewing the company’s proposed premiums, but neither agency has the authority to reject changes in rates

  • DeMint: Obama wants cliff dive – South Carolina GOP Sen. Jim DeMint accused President Barack Obama on Thursday of trying to take the country over the fiscal cliff.“The president campaigned on raising taxes and getting rid of the Bush-era tax cuts, and he’s gonna get his wish,” DeMint said on CBS’s “This Morning.”
    Continue Reading“I believe we’re going to be raising taxes, not just on the top earners. Everyone is going to pay more taxes next year in this country, and I think that’s what the president wants. … If you look at the facts, we don’t need more revenue, we just need to stop spending. The president is not going to stop spending. He’s proposed more spending. So it’s hard to work with someone who I think is intentionally trying to take us over this cliff.”
  • GOP tech gap needs millions – Republicans need to make a multimillion-dollar investment to close a digital gap with Democrats and President Obama, according to GOP tech experts.The party faces a growing urgency to catch up with Democrats; frustrated GOP operatives believe the party is lagging in an area widely agreed to have given Obama the edge in the last two presidential election cycles.“Everyone in the party is frustrated. I haven’t talked to one person who thinks that the Republicans were more successful online in 2012 [than in 2008 or 2010],” said Vincent Harris, a GOP strategist who ran digital campaigns for Rick Perry’s and Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaigns.“There is no doubt in my mind that this is the moment that this must be fixed. The good news, though, is that everyone seems to be open to solutions,” he said
  • The do’s and don’ts of quitting smoking – Anyone who has ever smoked and tried to quit knows how addictive nicotine can be. But what really works when it comes to quitting? Several former smokers had some hard-earned tips that might help you quit.Carla Berg, a Winship Cancer Institute addiction expert and professor at the Emory School of Public Health, had talked to hundreds of people trying to quit.”One thing I hear from people all the time is, ‘I’m just waiting to feel ready to quit,’ or, ‘I just need to want to quit and then I’ll quit.’ And what we know is that just rarely happens out of nowhere. So I always tell people if you’re waiting for the best time to quit smoking, that time is now,” said Berg.So what works? Through her Facebook Page, FOX 5’s Beth Galvin asked former smokers to share their secrets.
  • Election over, administration unleashes new rules – While the “fiscal cliff” of looming tax increases and spending cuts dominates political conversation in Washington, some Republicans and business groups see signs of a “regulatory cliff” that they say could be just as damaging to the economy.For months, federal agencies and the White House have sidetracked dozens of major regulations that cover everything from power plant pollution to workplace safety to a crackdown on Wall Street.The rules had been largely put on hold during the presidential campaign as the White House sought to quiet Republican charges that President Barack Obama was an overzealous regulator who is killing U.S. jobs.But since the election, the Obama administration has quietly reopened the regulations pipeline.
  • Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Digest for 2012-12-12 – Flap’s California Blog – Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Digest for 2012-12-12
  • Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-12 – Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-12 #tcot
  • My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-12 – Locum Tenens (Temporary) Dentist – Gregory Cole, D.D.S. – My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-12
  • Poll: Obama won 71% of Asian Vote – But Not Wedded to Either Party – Asian American voters came out in droves for President Barack Obama over GOP challenger Mitt Romney, but the country’s fastest growing ethnic group is not wedded to either party, according to a new poll out Wednesday.Obama won an estimated 2.3 million of their votes to Romney’s estimated 900,000 votes, or 71 percent to 28 percent, according to the survey by the Asian American Justice Center, Asian & Pacific Islander American Vote and the National Asian American Survey
  • Mark Levin explains how a big part of Obamacare could be gutted during Obama’s second term » The Right Scoop - – RT @JedediahBila: Mark Levin explains how a big part of Obamacare could be gutted during Obama’s second term:
  • 5 ways the GOP can do better with Latinos – A coalition of conservative groups is releasing a major study of Latino voters in four key states this morning, and Republicans would be wise to heed its lessons.Resurgent Republic and the Hispanic Leadership Network are presenting the findings of their study at 9 a.m. Eastern. The polls of Florida, Colorado, New Mexico and Nevada show Republicans remain in contention for as many as half of Latino voters in those four states in 2016, but fewer than one-quarter of Latinos in each state say they are likely to vote Republican four years from now.
  • Election Integrity Activist Calls for Prop 37 Recount – Another Bay Area citizen has called for a recount on a statewide ballot measure, this time on Prop 37, and she’s being helped by the man responsible for the Prop 29 recount last summer.Lori Grace, an election integrity activist based in Tiburon, Calif., filed a formal request with the Secretary of State’s office on Monday for a recount in the contest over Prop 37, a voter initiative that would require special labels on foods containing genetically modified organisms, or GMOs. (There won’t be any other ballot measure recounts from the general election, since Monday was the last day to file).Having two such recounts in one year is highly unusual, if not unprecedented. The earlier effort came after the June primary, when Bay Area surgeon John Maa requested a recount for Prop 29, the cigarette tax initiative that would have helped to fund cancer research.Now Maa is imparting some of his own hard-earned (and expensive — recounts in California must be bankrolled by the requester) knowledge to Grace. Both acknowledged that Maa has given her strategical advice on how to proceed.
  • California Governor Jerry Brown has early-stage prostate cancer – Gov. Jerry Brown is undergoing treatment for prostate cancer, his office announced this afternoon.The governor’s office described the condition as a “localized prostate cancer” and said Brown is continuing to work a full schedule while being treated with a short course of radiation.It released a statement from Eric Small, Brown’s oncologist at University of California San Francisco.”Fortunately, this is early stage localized prostate cancer, which is being treated with a short course of conventional radiotherapy,” Small said in the statement. “The prognosis is excellent, and there are not expected to be any significant side effects.”
  • As ‘fiscal cliff’ nears, Obama schedule loaded with photo-ops, holiday parties, golf – Since returning from a trip to southeast Asia on Nov. 21, President Obama has managed to play three rounds of golf but has met face-to-face only once with Speaker John A. Boehner, the man with whom he is trying to strike a deal on taxes and spending that could prevent another recession.With the deadline for going over the “fiscal cliff” less than three weeks away, the president’s schedule this week is exceptionally light. It does not include any time on the links with Mr. Boehner, Ohio Republican, who is also an avid golfer.On Monday, Mr. Obama’s only public event was a trip to Detroit, where he held a campaign-style rally with union auto workers that was ostensibly a push for middle-class tax cuts but mainly showcased Mr. Obama’s criticism of Michigan’s new “right-to-work” labor law.“It seems to me, that time would have been better spent here in Washington, D.C., working on the fiscal cliff, but he was in Michigan,” said Sen. Lamar Alexander, Tennessee Republican.

    On Tuesday, Mr. Obama had lunch with Vice President Joseph R. Biden and spoke to Mr. Boehner by phone late in the day. The president spent much of his evening with first lady Michelle Obama posing for photographs with members of the White House press corps and their guests at a holiday party. (Mr. Obama actually has performed this function twice in the past week; there was another media holiday party at the White House on Dec. 5).

  • California prison health care receiver issues layoff notices – California Correctional Health Care Services has issued layoff warnings to 2,200 of its employees with a goal of axing 829 positions early next year.The cuts will touch nearly 60 job classifications around the state, from doctors to custodians and impact 38 jobs in Sacramento County. The statewide cuts take effect Mar. 31, 2013.The state normally issues three lay off warning notices for every position it cuts, and workers in danger of losing their jobs can displace less-senior counterparts in state government, so it’s not clear how many staff will actually lose work. Officials don’t have an estimate of savings from the reductions.
  • Day By Day December 12, 2012 – Figures – Flap’s Blog – Day By Day December 12, 2012 – Figures #tcot
  • Rep. Moran: Son’s Attack on Girlfriend “An Accident” – Virginia Rep. Jim Moran’s office has another statement about his son’s arrest for assaulting his girlfriend in Columbia Heights earlier this month. And it turns out it was all an accident, according to Moran, despite his son’s guilty plea to assault.”The situation was an accident,” Moran spokeswoman Anne Hughes writes in an email, adding that both Moran and his girlfriend testified to that in court. “Patrick didn’t hit or shove her.”Hughes claims that only Patrick Moran and his girlfriend were around to see the alleged attack. “They were the only two people who witnessed the scene,” writes Hughes. “In that sense, their statements are the only ones that matter.”That would contradict the police report, which describes both a Metropolitan Police Department sergeant and an Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration investigator seeing Moran slam his girlfriend’s head into a trash can cage outside the Getaway, a 14th Street NW bar.
  • Democratic senator Menendez employed illegal immigrant who was registered sex offender – U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez employed as an unpaid intern in his Senate office an illegal immigrant who was a registered sex offender, now under arrest by immigration authorities, The Associated Press has learned. The Homeland Security Department instructed federal agents not to arrest him until after Election Day, a U.S. official involved in the case told the AP.Luis Abrahan Sanchez Zavaleta, an 18-year-old immigrant from Peru, was arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents in front of his home in New Jersey on Dec. 6, two federal officials said. Sanchez, who entered the country on a now-expired visitor visa from Peru, is facing deportation and remains in custody. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss details of Sanchez’s immigration case.
  • Sandoval opts to expand Medicaid coverage for Nevada’s neediest – Sandoval opts to expand Medicaid coverage for Nevada’s neediest #tcot
  • Fiscal Cliff: Hundreds of Billions Apart – The bellowing on Capitol Hill about which side has offered more “specifics” to resolve the fiscal cliff showdown masks a larger problem for Washington: The two sides are still hundreds of billions of dollars apart on revenue and entitlement cuts.Not to mention, Republicans and Democrats are also light-years apart on policy details that back up those budget targets.That’s why there’s increasing skepticism in Washington that a deal actually can be reached before Jan. 1, and the country will go over the fiscal cliff.
  • Fiscal Cliff: 180 economists oppose tax hike – A letter signed by 180 economists opposed to tax increases as part of a fiscal cliff deal will be delivered to Congress on Wednesday, according to a national anti-tax group.The letter argues that hiking tax rates would have a “significant, negative impact on the economy” and is slated to be sent to Capitol Hill on Wednesday, said Pete Sepp, executive vice president of the National Taxpayers Union, the low-taxes advocacy group that coordinated the effort.
  • California Psychiatrists Paid $400,000 Shows Bidding War- Bloomberg – RT @BloombergNews: Why do California psychiatrists make more than $400,00? Examining a payroll system run amok |
  • War-making for Losers By Mark Steyn – The new US Army manual for troops heading east apparently blames the tendency of Afghanistan’s US-trained soldiers and policemen to shoot their western “allies” on “American cultural ignorance”. Fortunately, the manual offers a solution:The draft leaked to the newspaper offers a list of “taboo conversation topics” that soldiers should avoid, including “making derogatory comments about the Taliban”…I mean, it’s not like they’re the enemy or anything.…“advocating women’s rights,” “any criticism of pedophilia,” “directing any criticism towards Afghans,” “mentioning homosexuality and homosexual conduct” or “anything related to Islam.”
  • Inside the Boehner-Ryan Alliance – Robert Costa – National Review Online – Inside the Boehner-Ryan Alliance – The speaker and the former GOP veep contender are quiet partners #tcot
  • Democrats continue to find out what was in ObamaCare–and try to dismantle it | Mobile Washington Examiner – Democrats continue to find out what was in ObamaCare–and try to dismantle it | Mobile Washington Examiner #tcot
  • Inside the Boehner-Ryan Alliance – The speaker and the former GOP veep contender are quiet partners – Paul Ryan spent the summer and fall in the national spotlight, but this winter he’s a subdued presence. He’s rarely granting interviews, and his public appearances have been scattered, with the most high profile a speech at the Kemp Foundation dinner. His closest friends say that he wants to return to his work quietly, and that he’s uninterested in playing a prominent role in the fiscal-cliff debate, even though he’s the GOP’s reigning budget expert.
  • The Morning Flap: December 12, 2012 – Flap’s Blog – The Morning Flap: December 12, 2012 #tcot
  • Democrats continue to find out what was in ObamaCare–and try to dismantle it | Mobile Washington Examiner – Democrats continue to find out what was in ObamaCare–and try to dismantle it #tcot
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share save 120 16 The Morning Flap: December 10, 2012

Obama and Boehner The Morning Flap: December 10, 2012

President Obama and House Speaker Boehner

These are my links for December 5th through December 10th:

  • Options narrow to avert fiscal cliff- Time is running short — and so are the options available to avert the fiscal cliff.President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) have just 21 days to resolve their differences over how to handle more than $500 billion in expiring tax rates and steep spending cuts.Although they met Sunday for the first time in more than three weeks — signaling a new, potentially more productive stage of the negotiations — there was no progress on the staff level ahead of that sit-down, according to Democratic and Republican sources.The White House and Capitol Hill are now staring at a narrow set of options fraught with political and policy peril. The course they choose will set the tone for the 113th Congress, Boehner’s speakership and Obama’s second term.

    Here is POLITICO’s rundown of the most likely scenarios:

    1. Go over the cliff
    2. Big deal
    3. Partial deal
  • Jim DeMint’s move and the growing frustration inside the GOP | Mobile Washington Examiner -
  • The GOP’s immigration jam
  • Dick Armey: John Boehner should vote on fiscal cliff plan- Former House Majority Leader Dick Armey suggested on Monday that House Speaker John Boehner should allow a vote on Republican and Democratic tax-and-spending plans to avert the fiscal cliff and force President Barack Obama to “live with the consequences” of his plan.“Unless the president shows some real negotiating, let’s say vigor, commitment, what I would do if I was John Boehner is I would take my version of what I think is the best policy for America to the floor, offer the Democrats, on behalf of the president, a chance to offer a substitute,” Armey, a Texas Republican who was majority leader from 1995 to 2003, said on CBS’s “This Morning.”
  • The Journal’s Tax Advice- he The Wall Street Journal editors are are unhappy about the present correlation unhappy about the present correlation of political forces. Who isn’t? They’re of political forces. Who isn’t? They’re also, I gather, unhappy about “Beltway also, I gather, unhappy about “Beltway sages” who, facing the fact that the sages” who, facing the fact that the Bush tax cuts expire at the end of this Bush tax cuts expire at the end of this year, have suggested Republicans year, have suggested Republicans accept a modest increase in tax rates accept a modest increase in tax rates for the wealthy while leading the for the wealthy while leading the charge to keep taxes from rising for 98 charge to keep taxes from rising for 98 percent of the American people. percent of the American people.It would be great if the It would be great if the Journal Journal editors editors had a better idea of what Republicans had a better idea of what Republicans could do. They don’t.
  • Doctors: We Gave at the Office, and Then Some- As a physician who treats Medicare patients, the fiscal cliff is all too familiar territory. Living under the current Medicare reimbursement system, known as the Sustainable Growth Rate, the viability of my practice is under threat.At least once a year, I am taken to a precipice known as the SGR cliff, which mandates that reimbursement rates are reduced by significant levels unless Congress steps in with its “doc fix” and staves off the cut. This year is no different. The SGR rate will be cut by nearly 27 percent on Jan. 1 unless Congress acts.This threatened cut, coupled with rate reductions and penalties already codified under the 2010 health care law and sequestration amount to a systematic targeting of Medicare doctors to pay for deficit reduction.To be clear, our SGR cliff is not merely an annual exercise. In 2010, we faced no less than five cliffs, sometimes going over, then fixed retroactively after a few weeks of panic and confusion among us and our patients.

    If this weren’t enough, the grand promise made to physicians to fix the SGR in the 2010 law actually worsened the situation by once again targeting reimbursement rates and adding reporting and electronic health record mandates. For good measure, the law created the Independent Payment Advisory Board as a means to further reduce reimbursements.

  • ObamaCare: Businesses Face Wrenching Choice- The president’s health care law presents the nation’s employers with a number of extremely difficult decisions. Perhaps nothing illustrates the selection of no-good-choices better than the requirement that businesses offer expensive insurance or pay a penalty.Recent news media coverage has highlighted larger businesses reducing employee hours below 30 hours per week in order to avoid the employer-mandate requirements or penalties. Smaller businesses, too, might be forced to reduce employment below the 50 full-time equivalent employee threshold, or resist growing above the threshold, to avoid the mandate. None of these options is productive, and they ultimately harm employees and the economy. Replacing one full-time position with two part-time positions is not job creation. Further, money that must go toward increased benefits or non-tax deductible penalties will crowd out wage increases and business investment.
  • The Republican Tax Panic- If any Republicans thought that President Obama would respond with magnanimity in victory, they now know better. He is determined to rout them on taxes, give as a little as possible on spending, and blame them for any economic damage in the bargain. The question for the GOP is how to minimize the harm to the economy, as well as to their chances of a political and policy comeback in 2014 and beyond.So it’s a shame that Republicans are playing into Mr. Obama’s hands, negotiating in public among themselves, prematurely giving up on the tax issue and undermining House Speaker John Boehner in the process. Mr. Obama isn’t going to blink on the budget if he thinks Republicans are going to blink first, and so far the emerging GOP position seems to be to surrender on taxes first and hope Mr. Obama will have mercy on them later on entitlements.
  • Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-09 – Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-09 #tcot
  • My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-09 – Locum Tenens (Temporary) Dentist – Gregory Cole, D.D.S. – My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-09
  • GetGlue – Your app for TV, Movies, and Sports – I unlocked the Homeland: In Memoriam sticker on #GetGlue!
  • Humor / The Golden Rule explained….. – The Golden Rule explained…..
  • How Obama’s data scientists built a volunteer army on Facebook- No matter how good your social media team is, the chances are it’s never done anything like this. Rather than just using Facebook as a channel for posting messages and tracking its followers’ feelings, the Obama for America data science team turned social media into a tool for efficiently recruiting the human resources it needed leading into the election’s home stretch.The key was a model for determining who among its followers were the best messengers, who they might be able to persuade, and what actions they might be willing to take. So, rather than blast all of President Obama’s 30 million Facebook fans or 20 million Twitter followers with the same plea for cash or neighborhood organizers, the campaign was able to make informed decisions about who it asked for what, and how it asked them.
  • GOP Rep. Cole: Take Obama’s offer to gain tax cuts for ‘98 percent’- Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.) said Sunday that House Republicans should agree to extending tax cuts for the majority of U.S. taxpayers.Speaking on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Cole continued to champion his case that the GOP caucus should take the deal that President Obama is offering: keeping tax rates in place for those making less than $250,000 a year, while allowing rates to increase on the wealthy.
  • White House could protect middle class from looming tax hikes- The White House has the power to temporarily protect taxpayers from middle-class tax hikes even as upper income rates rise if Congress does nothing and all of the Bush-era tax rates expire in January.Experts and lawmakers alike agree that Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner has the power to adjust how much is withheld from paychecks for tax purposes — for all taxpayers or just for some.
  • GOP seeks to up its online game – Emily Schultheis – POLITICO.com – GOP seeks to up its online game – Emily Schultheis – #tcot
  • Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Digest for 2012-12-08 – Flap’s California Blog – Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Digest for 2012-12-08
  • Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-08 – Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-08 #tcot
  • GOP seeks to up its online game – Emily Schultheis – POLITICO.com – GOP seeks to up its online game – Emily Schultheis – #tcot
  • GOP seeks to up its online game – Emily Schultheis – POLITICO.com – GOP seeks to up its online game #tcot
  • GIF: Juan Manuel Marquez knocks out Manny Pacquaio at end of … on Twitpic – RT @BuzzFeedAndrew: Out cold. RT @samir: GIF of the knockout
  • My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-08 – Locum Tenens (Temporary) Dentist – Gregory Cole, D.D.S. – My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-08
  • GOP seeks to up its online game- Republican digital gurus are starting to chart a path forward for 2014 and beyond after conceding that they were badly outgunned by Barack Obama’s campaign in cyberspace this past November.About 50 top Republicans, both staffers for the Romney campaign and the Republican National Committee as well as outside GOP digital consultants, huddled in Washington Thursday morning to rehash what Mitt Romney did wrong, digitally speaking.
  • Gregory Flap @ Ronnie’s Diner – 8 mile race recovery run is finished. Now waiting for a table at Ronnie’s. (@ Ronnie’s Diner)
  • Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Digest for 2012-12-07 – Flap’s California Blog – Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Digest for 2012-12-07
  • Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-07 – Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-07 #tcot
  • My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-07 – Locum Tenens (Temporary) Dentist – Gregory Cole, D.D.S. – My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-07
  • Do Not Have Sex with This Man | Sexuality/Gender | Religion Dispatches – Stupid 2 RT @EWErickson This is one of the funniest damn things I’ve ever read @DouthatNYT inspires comedic brilliance
  • Steve Smith: Fleetwood Mac to tour; Clapton jams with The Stones; the 12-12-12 TV concert; and Led Zep’s honor – SGVTribune.com – Steve Smith: Fleetwood Mac to tour; Clapton jams with The Stones; the 12-12-12 TV concert; and Led Zep’s honor: …
  • SCOTUS To Hear Gay Marriage Cases – Flap’s Blog – SCOTUS To Hear Gay Marriage Cases #tcot
  • Supreme Court To Hear Gay Couples’ Marriage Cases – RT @chrisgeidner: UPDATE: The Supreme Court’s order in the #DOMA & #Prop8 cases:
  • Charles Krauthammer: It’s nothing but a power play- What should Republicans do? Stop giving stuff away. If Obama remains intransigent, let him be the one to take us over the cliff. And then let the new House, which is sworn in weeks before the president, immediately introduce and pass a full across-the-board restoration of the George W. Bush tax cuts.Obama will counter with the usual all-but-the-rich tax cut — as the markets gyrate and the economy begins to wobble under his feet.Result? We’re back to square one, but with a more level playing field. The risk to Obama will be rising and the debt ceiling will be looming. Most important of all, however, Republicans will still be in possession of their unity, their self-respect — and their trousers.———–

    The Fiscal Cliff does not look so bad, now does it?

  • Day By Day December 7, 2012 – Take A Bow – Flap’s Blog – Day By Day December 7, 2012 – Take A Bow #tcot
  • Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Digest for 2012-12-06 – Flap’s California Blog – Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Digest for 2012-12-06
  • My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-06 – Locum Tenens (Temporary) Dentist – Gregory Cole, D.D.S. – My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-06
  • Sen. Rand Paul: We Should Let Dems Raise Taxes And Then Let Them Own It- SEN. RAND PAUL: I have yet another thought on how we can fix this. Why don’t we let the Democrats pass whatever they want? If they are the party of higher taxes, all the Republicans vote present and let the Democrats raise taxes as high as they want to raise them, let Democrats in the Senate raise taxes, let the president sign it and then make them own the tax increase. And when the economy stalls, when the economy sputters, when people lose their jobs, they know which party to blame, the party of high taxes. Let’s don’t be the party of just almost as high taxes.LARRY KUDLOW, CNBC: Some people have called that the doomsday scenario. Others have said, ‘Look, it’s a strategic retreat on the Republicans’ behalf.’ WWould you vote present for that in the Senate if that came up?RAND PAUL: Yes, I don’t think we have to in the Senate. In the House, they have to because the Democrats don’t have the majority. In the Senate, I’m happy not to filibuster it, and I will announce tonight on your show that I will work with Harry Reid to let him pass his big old tax hike with a simple majority if that’s what Harry Reid wants, because then they will become the party of high taxes and they can own it.=========

    Senator Paul has a point….

  • California Republicans look to Jim Brulte to lead comeback- Following a catastrophic election for the California Republican Party, influential members of the party have recruited a prominent former legislator, Jim Brulte, to lead a comeback.The former Senate Republican leader has been discussing his interest in the party chairmanship with members of the party since the election a month ago. Brulte is a giant in GOP circles, having helped Republicans in the 1990s win a majority in the state Assembly for the first time in nearly 25 years.
  • Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Digest for 2012-12-05 – Flap’s California Blog – (500) … #tcot
  • Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Digest for 2012-12-04 – Flap’s California Blog – Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Digest for 2012-12-04
  • Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-05 – Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-05 #tcot
  • Online sales tax to be added to defense authorization bill- This may be the last Christmas of online shopping without paying sales tax.A proposed online sales tax has been offered as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act, much to the ire of opponents.The Computer and Communications Industry Association, a group that opposes this move, says that an online sales tax will burden small businesses, “some of the most promising candidates for future economic growth.”
  • The House Fiscal Cliff Strategy: Shut Up and Pass a Bill – Flap’s Blog – The House Fiscal Cliff Strategy: Shut Up and Pass a Bill #tcot
  • The Troubles with ObamaCare Implementation – Flap’s Blog – The Troubles with ObamaCare Implementation #tcot
  • American Dental Association Releases Updated Dental Radiograph (X-Ray) Recommendations – American Dental Association Releases Updated Dental Radiograph (X-Ray) Recommendations #tcot
share save 120 16 The Morning Flap: December 10, 2012
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share save 120 16 The Morning Flap: April 11, 2012

Google Plus Redesign The Morning Flap: April 11, 2012

These are my links for April 6th through April 11th:

  • Google+ gets major redesign with simpler UI and more customization Google announced this morning that Google+ is set to receive a massive redesign over the next few days that will make it easier to use and much more intuitive. The company has been innovating quickly with its social network, and this is just another example of their commitment to the platform.   For starters, the main page has seen a complete overhaul. Rather than your tabs bring up top as well as along the side, you’ll get icons along the left panel. These are also customizable, so if you don’t want the Games icon, you can simply move it. There are also quick actions that you can access for each icon by hovering over them.   Posting photos and videos is getting an upgrade as well. Larger content will appear in your Stream now whether you’re sharing it yourself or viewing pictures from your friends. Google is adding a feature that they’re calling ‘cards’, which are streams of conversations that you can join. There will also be an activity drawer to highlight important content.

  • ObamaCare Poll Watch: Health Care Law Support Slides – The recent Supreme Court arguments over the constitutionality of President Obama’s health care law have not helped the public’s perception of the landmark legislation. A new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds just 39% of Americans support the reforms, it’s lowest percentage ever.

    “Only about half of Democrats want the entire law upheld. Nearly two-thirds of Republicans want all of it thrown out. “

  • The Obama Rule – Forget Warren Buffett, or whatever other political prop the White House wants to use for its tax agenda. This week the Administration officially endorsed what in essence is the Obama Rule: Taxes must be high simply to spread the wealth, never mind the impact on the economy or government revenue. It’s all about “fairness,” baby.

    This was long apparent to those fated to closely watch the 2008 campaign, but some voters might have missed the point amid the gauzy rhetoric about hope and change. Now we know without any doubt. White House aides made it official Tuesday in their on-the-record briefing on the new federal minimum tax that travels under the political alias known as the “Buffett rule.”

  • Online sales tax battle pits Amazon against Norquist and Sen. DeMint – Proponents of an online sales tax aren’t letting up in their push to move legislation through Congress this year, despite the opposition of conservative heavyweights.

    Retailers have been lobbying aggressively for legislation that would help states collect sales taxes from online purchases. Joining in the effort are state and local governments and some unions, which see an opportunity to raise more revenue.

  • Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog » President 2012: Rick Santorum Suspends Presidential Campaign – President 2012: Rick Santorum Suspends Presidential Campaign
  • Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog » Day By Day April 8 – 10 Win One for the Zimmer, Smokin’ and Rush Job – Day By Day April 8 – 10 Win One for the Zimmer, Smokin’ and Rush Job
  • Parent Center Opens on El Monte High School Campus – More than 80 parents, students, staff and community members came together in celebration of the grand opening of El Monte High School’s new Parent Center. The center was realized through a partnership between the school and L.E.A.R.N.’s (Learning, Enrichment & Academic Resources Network) GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs) program which is designed to increase the number of low income students who are prepared to enter and succeed in post-secondary education.{
    According to El Monte High School principal Keith Richardson, the center will provide resources enabling parents to partner with their children in academic success throughout their high school years as well as encourage them to seek post-secondary education.
  • El Monte Union weighs proposal to manage its own bond program to cut contractor costs – Months after a major controversy surrounding its bond construction management company, the El Monte Union High School District may begin overseeing its $148 million bond program internally instead.

    Board members last week postponed the decision until they could get more information on the proposal, which would eliminate the need to hire outside consultants and save the district roughly $1 million a year, according to district documents.

    “A lot of districts use construction management firms that have a large staff with different expertise,” said El Monte Union’s Chief Business Official Ryan Di Giulio. “There’s a cost associated with that. There’s a certain protection provided with that expertise. That’s what each district has to weigh.”

    The district is currently contracting with Industry-based Del Terra to manage several construction projects following the district’s fallout with former bond management company Alsaleh Project Management (APM).

    The two entities officially parted ways in October following allegations by the district that APM misused public funds. The district later retracted those accusations, settled with APM – paying $150,000 in outstanding invoices and agreeing not to elaborate on any of the issues.

    The contract with APM was never reinstated.

    School board member Salvador Ramirez said the changes could result in a big cost savings to the district as well as better oversight.

  • Health-care law will add $340 billion to deficit, new study finds – President Obama’s landmark health-care initiative, long touted as a means to control costs, will actually add more than $340 billion to the nation’s budget woes over the next decade, according to a new study by a Republican member of the board that oversees Medicare financing.

    The study is set to be released Tuesday by Charles Blahous, a conservative policy analyst whom Obama approved in 2010 as the GOP trustee for Medicare and Social Security. His analysis challenges the conventional wisdom that the health-care law, which calls for an expensive expansion of coverage for the uninsured beginning in 2014, will nonetheless reduce deficits by raising taxes and cutting payments to Medicare providers.

  • @Flap Twitter Updates for 2012-04-10 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – @Flap Twitter Updates for 2012-04-10
  • With my daughter, Ashley and son Jesse at Saugus Cafe for lun… on Twitpic – With my daughter, Ashley and son Jesse at Saugus Cafe for lunch
  • @Flap Twitter Updates for 2012-04-09 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – @Flap Twitter Updates for 2012-04-09
  • Ultra-Training FAQ, Part 2 | runner’s rambles – How do you build up mileage / keep high mileage without getting burned out?
  • With my grandson, James Phillip in San Diego for Easter
    on Twitpic
    – With my grandson, James Phillip in San Diego for Easter
  • yfrog Photo : http://yfrog.com/hsrz1gjj Shared by Flap – With my daughter, Anna, son Scott in Irvine, California. Happy Easter. Anna is expecting in August
  • @Flap Twitter Updates for 2012-04-08 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – @Flap Twitter Updates for 2012-04-08
  • Happy Easter 2012: He is Risen | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Happy Easter 2012: He is Risen
  • Parting Ways – Anyone who has read Derb in our pages knows he’s a deeply literate, funny, and incisive writer. I direct anyone who doubts his talents to his delightful first novel, “Seeing Calvin Coolidge in a Dream,” or any one of his “Straggler” columns in the books section of NR. Derb is also maddening, outrageous, cranky, and provocative. His latest provocation, in a webzine, lurches from the politically incorrect to the nasty and indefensible. We never would have published it, but the main reason that people noticed it is that it is by a National Review writer. Derb is effectively using our name to get more oxygen for views with which we’d never associate ourselves otherwise. So there has to be a parting of the ways. Derb has long danced around the line on these issues, but this column is so outlandish it constitutes a kind of letter of resignation. It’s a free country, and Derb can write whatever he wants, wherever he wants. Just not in the pages of NR or NRO, or as someone associated with NR any longer.
  • NBC Fires Producer of Misleading Zimmerman Tape – NBC News has fired a producer who was involved in the production of a misleading segment about the Trayvon Martin case in Florida.

    The person was fired on Thursday, according to two people with direct knowledge of the disciplinary action who declined to be identified discussing internal company matters. They also declined to name the fired producer. A spokeswoman for NBC News declined to comment.

    The action came in the wake of an internal investigation by NBC News into the production of the segment, which strung together audio clips in such a way that made George Zimmerman’s shooting of Mr. Martin sound racially motivated. Ever since the Feb. 26 shooting, there has been a continuing debate about whether race was a factor in the incident.

    The segment in question was shown on the “Today” show on March 27. It included audio of Mr. Zimmerman saying, “This guy looks like he’s up to no good. He looks black.”

  • Day By Day April 7, 2012 – Voice-Overs | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Day By Day April 7, 2012 – Voice-Overs
  • CA-26: Fundraising wrap-up: Big hauls for Democrat House contender Julia Brownley – California Democrat Julia Brownley will post $280,000 in her first fundraising report and has $250,000 in the bank. Brownley is running in a Democrat-friendly district in Florida left open by the retirment of Rep. Elton Gallegly (R-Calif.).
  • Untitled (http://getglue.com/Fullosseousflap/stickers/fan?s=ts&ref=Fullosseousflap) – I’m a Fan of Los Angeles Dodgers on @GetGlue
  • Santorum moves fuel predictions he will exit – Rick Santorum’s campaign insisted Friday the former Pennsylvania senator is still in the race despite mounting pressure even from voters in his home state that he pull out before the Keystone State’s primary April 24.

    But Santorum has scheduled no public events over the holiday weekend and has made no major media buys, fueling speculation that he might quit. Polling in Pennsylvania that shows him slipping against front-runner Mitt Romney raises the prospect of an embarrassing home-state loss that could hurt his chances if he were to make a run for the nomination in 2016.

    A Santorum campaign spokesman said the candidate had a busy slate of events scheduled for next week and promised that a list would be released soon.

  • Giuliani Close to Endorsing Romney – The Washington Post reports that Rudy Giuliani (R), who ran in the 2008 Republican presidential primaries, is about to endorse his former opponent Mitt Romney, according to the Romney campaign’s New York state director Guy Molinari.

    Said Molinari, “He’s about to… He wants to do it for the sake of the country, so he is willing to put his own feelings aside.”

    Liz Benjamin points out that Giuliani is the last “high-profile holdout” in New York and “hasn’t been terribly kind to his erstwhile opponent, calling the former Massachusetts governor a flip-flopperon national TV back in February.”

  • Gregory Flap @ Ronnie’s Diner – foursquare – After our 8 miler I am here with Mary, Alice, Nancy and Tara (@ Ronnie’s Diner)
  • @Flap Twitter Updates for 2012-04-07 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – @Flap Twitter Updates for 2012-04-07
  • Updated With Video: CA-26: Linda Parks Avoids Question Who She Supports for President | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Updated With Video: CA-26: Linda Parks Avoids Question Who She Supports for President
  • The Afternoon Flap: April 6, 2012 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – The Afternoon Flap: April 6, 2012
  • CA-26: Linda Parks Avoids Question Who She Supports for President | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – CA-26: Linda Parks Avoids Question Who She Supports for President
share save 120 16 The Morning Flap: April 11, 2012
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share save 120 16 The Afternoon and Evening Flap: November 8, 2011

These are my links for November 8 in the PM

  • Obama Couldn’t Wait: His New Christmas Tree Tax – President Obama’s Agriculture Department today announced that it will impose a new 15-cent charge on all fresh Christmas trees—the Christmas Tree Tax—to support a new Federal program to improve the image and marketing of Christmas trees.

    In the Federal Register of November 8, 2011, Acting Administrator of Agricultural Marketing David R. Shipman announced that the Secretary of Agriculture will appoint a Christmas Tree Promotion Board. The purpose of the Board is to run a “program of promotion, research, evaluation, and information designed to strengthen the Christmas tree industry’s position in the marketplace; maintain and expend existing markets for Christmas trees; and to carry out programs, plans, and projects designed to provide maximum benefits to the Christmas tree industry” (7 CFR 1214.46(n)). And the program of “information” is to include efforts to “enhance the image of Christmas trees and the Christmas tree industry in the United States” (7 CFR 1214.10).

    To pay for the new Federal Christmas tree image improvement and marketing program, the Department of Agriculture imposed a 15-cent fee on all sales of fresh Christmas trees by sellers of more than 500 trees per year (7 CFR 1214.52). And, of course, the Christmas tree sellers are free to pass along the 15-cent Federal fee to consumers who buy their Christmas trees.

    Acting Administrator Shipman had the temerity to say the 15-cent mandatory Christmas tree fee “is not a tax nor does it yield revenue for the Federal government” (76 CFR 69102). The Federal government mandates that the Christmas tree sellers pay the 15-cents per tree, whether they want to or not. The Federal government directs that the revenue generated by the 15-cent fee goes to the Board appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture to carry out the Christmas tree program established by the Secretary of Agriculture. Mr. President, that’s a new 15-cent tax to pay for a Federal program to improve the image and marketing of Christmas trees.

    Nobody is saying President Obama doesn’t have authority to impose his new Christmas Tree Tax — his Administration cites the Commodity Promotion, Research and Information Act of 1996. Just because the Obama Administration has the legal power to impose its Christmas Tree Tax doesn’t mean it should do so.

  • Mitt Romney as the Nominee: Conservatism Dies and Barack Obama Wins – Why Romney Will Be The Nominee

    Mitt Romney will be the nominee because the other candidates, right now, are a pretty pathetic lot.

    The base will not forgive Rick Perry his immigration sins. In fact, that has hurt him far more than his debate performances, but his debate performances have hurt him badly. Perry, who came out principled and fiery with a record others could only envy, has left others with the impression that he’s a poor man’s version of the village idiot, which in the SEC we call “Aggies”. Maybe he can turn it around.

    Newt Gingrich will not be the nominee because, despite his daughter’s rebuttals to the horror stories of how Gingrich divorced his first of three wives, Jackie Gingrich told the Washington Post on January 3, 1985, “He walked out in the spring of 1980 and I returned to Georgia. By September, I went into the hospital for my third surgery. The two girls came to see me, and said Daddy is downstairs and could he come up? When he got there, he wanted to discuss the terms of the divorce while I was recovering from the surgery.”

    Gingrich went on to cheat on the second wife with the third. Regardless of the actual facts or even the spin, he won’t win women.

    Herman Cain won’t be the nominee because he can’t win women either. Regardless of what you think of the Politico story, Cain’s handling of the story has been an epic disaster. He’s down at least 10 points with women in Iowa. He’s falling even further and doesn’t even realize it. He’s largely been emboldened by a conservative media that is so used to standing by its men that too few are telling Herman that he is now at the point where he must actually sit and answer questions whether he wants to or not and whether he feels maligned or not and whether I think he should have to or not. If he loses women by as big as he is starting to lose the women, he cannot win.

    So Mitt Romney will be the nominee. Conservatives will not rally together with the least of the bad alternatives and Romney, like John McCain before him, will run up the middle to the nomination. But, just like McCain, Romney will not beat Barack Obama.

  • Issue 2 falls, Ohio collective bargaining law repealed – Ohioans voted Tuesday night to repeal a Republican-backed law that restricted collective bargaining for public workers, a victory for Democrats and labor organizers both nationally and in the state.

    AP has declared Issue 2 (as the law was called on the ballot) dead. As of this writing, with about a quarter of precincts in, repeal led by a whopping 63 to 37 percent margin.

    Gov. John Kasich (R) took office in January vowing to curb unions’ power. But he appears to have overstepped his hand in curtailing the rights of 350,000 public workers — including firefighters and police officers — to negotiate over benefits, equipment and other issues.

    The backlash against the law began as soon as Kasich signed it, in March. By August, when the governor asked for a compromise with unions, it was too late.

    As in other states, the law became a battleground for an ongoing fight between labor and conservative groups over collective bargaining. In Wisconsin, after Gov. Scott Walker (R) eliminated collective bargaining for many public employees, Democrats and labor failed to take back the state Senate in recall elections. Now, unions have their first bonafide win.

    By including firefighters and police officers in the legislation, Republicans in Ohio set themselves up for a far more difficult fight. Wisconsin’s collective bargaining law made exceptions for both.

  • Herman Cain: Harassment charge is ‘baseless, bogus and false’ – Republican Herman Cain directly confronted allegations on Tuesday that he had sexually harassed women, saying his latest accuser had lied and promising to continue his quest for the presidency.

    Addressing the controversy before a throng of reporters in suburban Phoenix, Cain said he had no recollection of ever meeting Sharon Bialek, the woman who went public Monday and accused him of groping her in a car after the two dined together in Washington 14 years ago. Cain called her account “baseless, bogus and false” and said Bialek and three other women who have accused him of sexual harassment are part of a coordinated effort to attack his character and derail his campaign.

    “We are not going to allow Washington or politics to deny me the opportunity to represent this great nation,” Cain said, adding that he would be willing to take a lie-detector test. “As far as these accusations causing me to back off and maybe withdraw from this presidential primary race — ain’t gonna happen.”

    The controversy over the charges escalated just minutes before Cain’s news conference, when one of the previously anonymous women accusing him of inappropriate behavior decided to reveal her name after it appeared on news sites. She urged the other accusers to hold a news conference with her.

    Karen Kraushaar, 55, now a communications official for the Treasury Department’s inspector general for tax administration, filed a claim of sexual harassment against Cain when he headed the National Restaurant Association and she was an employee there in the 1990s. She received a payment when she left the organization, but Cain, who disputed the allegations at the time, was not a party to the agreement.

    “The reason sexual harassment is so difficult to prove is that workplace sexual predators try to make sure the victim is alone when the harassment takes place,” she wrote in an e-mail after Cain’s news conference.

  • Herman Cain sex harassment questions not barred at Michigan debate tomorrow night – When Herman Cain debated Newt Gingrich solo in Texas over the weekend, questions about the sex harassment allegations from his NRA tenure were off-limits.

    Continue Reading
    But a CNBC spokesman tells me that the cable network has reserved the right to ask such questions at tomorrow’s debate in Michigan, which is supposed to be focused on the economy.

    “The debate will focus on jobs, taxes, the deficit and the health of our national economy, but there are no restrictions on questions,” spokesman Brian Steel wrote me in an email. “As for Herman Cain, he is scheduled to attend.”

    Asked whether the Cain campaign had requested any question restrictions, Steel said all conversations with the various campaigns are off the record and declined to say one way or the other.

  • DeMint endorses Stenberg, sponsors fund-raising drive – Republican Senate candidate Don Stenberg on Tuesday got the endorsement he wanted.
    South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint, sometimes described as a kingmaker for candidates seeking conservative support, said Stenberg is “a lifelong conservative with the principles, integrity and courage needed to stand up to the big spenders in both political parties in Washington.”
    Stenberg is “not only the strongest conservative in the race, but we also believe he’s the most electable,” DeMint said in a statement issued through his Senate Conservatives Fund website.
    The five-candidate 2012 GOP Senate field includes Attorney General Jon Bruning, state Sen. Deb Fischer of Valentine, Pat Flynn of Schuyler and Spencer Zimmerman of Omaha.
    Stenberg, Nebraska’s state treasurer, is a candidate with strong name recognition numbers, but scarce financial support. 
    A Senate candidate for the fourth time — he was the Republican nominee in 2000 — Stenberg entered October with $18,000 in campaign cash on hand compared to $1.6 million available to Bruning, the presumed Republican frontrunner.
  • Ron Paul and the GOP’s third-party nightmare scenario – Ron Paul is a powerful man.

    The Texas Republican Congressman says he has no intention of launching an independent run for president if he loses the GOP presidential primary next year. But, if he happens to change his mind, polling suggests he could have a major impact on the identity of the next president.

    A new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll shows that an independent bid from Paul would garner 18 percent of the national vote. Perhaps more important, it would swing the popular vote toward President Obama by a large margin — 44 percent to 32 percent in a hypothetical three-way matchup that also includes former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney.

    In a head-to-head race with Romney, Obama leads by a far more narrow 49 percent to 43 percent.

    “Dr. Paul has strong crossover appeal, and could do very well as an independent,” Paul campaign manager Jesse Benton told The Fix. “He has, however, decided to remain in the GOP, as he has for over 20 years in Congress, and use that appeal to beat President Obama as the Republican nominee.”

    But, what if Paul doesn’t wind up as the GOP nominee? It’s not hard to see how a Paul third-party candidacy could create a nightmare scenario — albeit an unlikely one — for Republicans.

    As we’ve discussed previously on this blog, a third-party bid is a very difficult undertaking, and there are relatively few politicians — we’re thinking Paul, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and self-promoter Donald Trump here — who could actually pull it off. A politician essentially needs vast personal wealth, name recognition or an extremely devoted following — and ideally all three. And, even then, they have precious little chance of winning.

  • Karen Kraushaar, second Cain accuser wants ‘joint press conference’ – A second woman — Karen Kraushaar, a communications official at the Treasury Department – has come forward to identify herself as a woman who says she was sexually harassed by Herman Cain.

    Kraushaar was one of the two women originally mentioned in a POLITICO story that appeared Oct. 30. Kraushaar and another employee of the National Restaurant Association had complained about Cain’s behavior to colleagues and senior officials at the NRA, and both women left the trade group with a cash settlement. Kraushaar received about $45,000.

    POLITICO initially had shielded Kraushaar’s identity to protect her privacy, but on Tuesday, Kraushaar agreed that her identity could be revealed.

    Kraushaar, 55, said in an interview with POLITICO that she would like to band together with the other three women accusing Cain of harassment.

    “That would be my preference, that we all go together in a joint press conference,” she said, noting that she’s turned down interview requests from a number of TV news shows.

    Kraushaar said she had not talked to the other women about such an idea and that such a plan would be executed by their attorneys.

    Now the spokesperson for IRS’s Inspector General, Kraushaar has worked as a career federal government official for different agencies in Washington. A Brown graduate, Kraushaar received a master’s degree from the University of Michigan and began her career as a print journalist.

    On the details of Cain’s allegedly inappropriate behavior with the two women, POLITICO had a half-dozen sources shedding light on different aspects of the complaints.

  • Poll: Cain favorability slips with Republicans as allegations mount – The Hill’s Blog Briefing Room – Poll: Cain favorability slips with Republicans as allegations mount
  • Poll: Cain favorability slips with Republicans as allegations mount – Forty percent of Republicans have a less favorable view of Herman Cain after watching the press conference in which Sheila Bialek accused the GOP presidential candidate of groping her in a car, according to a Reuters-Ipsos poll released on Tuesday.

    39 percent of Republicans polled said they believe the allegations against the candidate are true. On Tuesday Cain accused Bialeck of lying, and said he doesn’t “remember knowing her.”

    While recent polls show that Cain continues to match up well against his GOP rivals, a Gallup poll released on Tuesday showed Cain’s “positive intensity score” has plummeted in the week’s since the sexual harassment allegations were first made public.

    Bialek is the fourth woman to accuse Cain of sexual harassment but the first to do so publicly. Cain has strongly denied the accusations, and his campaign responded by attacking Bialeck’s credibility on Tuesday, saying she has a “long and troubled” history.

  • Herman Cain holds news conference on sexual harassment accusations (Live video, tweets) – Election 2012 – The Washington Post – RT @washingtonpost: Herman Cain now: “I tried to remember if I recognized her. And I didn’t.” #video
  • Need To Know Videos – NationalJournal.com – RT @nationaljournal: Cain: The charges, and accusations, I absolutely reject. They simply didn’t happen.
  • (403) http://tvbythenumbers.zap2it.com/2011/11/08/nbc-to-air-the-biggest-loser-where-are-they-now-special-on-wed – (403) …
  • President 2012: Let’s Get this Done | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – President 2012: Let’s Get this Done #tcot #catcot
  • (403) http://tvbythenumbers.zap2it.com/2011/11/08/nbc-to-air-the-biggest-loser-where-are-they-now-special-on-wednesday-november-23/110032/?&utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter – NBC to Air ‘The Biggest Loser: Where Are They Now” Special on Wednesday, November 23
  • NBC to Air ‘The Biggest Loser: Where Are They Now” Special on Wednesday, November 23 – November 8, 2011 – It’s an inspiring Thanksgiving special unlike any before on “The Biggest Loser,” when the holiday treat “The Biggest Loser: Where Are They Now?” premieres on Wednesday, November 23 (9-11 p.m. ET). Viewers can catch up with some of their favorite contestants from past seasons of the series, but they’ll also be treated for the first time ever to hilarious bloopers featuring the trainers, host Alison Sweeney and the contestants.

    Alison Sweeney hosts the special, filmed before a live audience, and trainers Bob Harper, Anna Kournikova and Dolvett Quince will all be on hand to share their thoughts about the current season of the show. Cameras will also follow trainer Bob Harper through “a day in the life.” And a blooper reel adds to the fun, giving viewers a backstage pass to some of the funniest behind-the-scenes moments with the host, trainers and season 12 contestants.

    One contestant makes a big surprise announcement, and another shares her emotional story of competing in one of the most difficult competitions in the world. And “The Biggest Loser” family comes together to help one of their own – season nine contestant Sam Poueu – and give an update on his condition following his terrible accident. Plus, cooking expert Aida Mollenkamp will prepare a healthy Thanksgiving feast for the trainers and past season contestants, and share great cooking tips as well.

    Fan favorites like Abby Rike (season eight), Tara Costa (season seven), O’Neal Hampton (season nine) and season five winner Ali Vincent will reveal what they are up to now, along with season eight champ Danny Cahill and season 11 winner Olivia Ward. Viewers can also catch up with Hannah Curlee (season 11) and Jesse Atkins (season 10) as well as other popular players like season seven’s Sione Fa and Jerry and Estella Hayes, who give their updates via personal videos.

    I attended the taping!

  • Cain surrogate warns “elites in conservative media” – Niger Innis, the national spokesman for the Congress of Racial Equality and a “volunteer adviser” for Herman Cain’s campaign, goes on Fox News to attack a group that hasn’t been terribly sympathetic to Cain’s woes — the “elites in the conservative media.”

    “I would caution Karl [Rove], I would caution members of the conservative elite that sexual harassment today is being used as a powerful, political weapon the same way that the race card today is used as a powerful, political weapon.

    And I would caution these elites in the conservative media, as well as in the liberal media: do you really think it’s just going to end — this political tool — with Herman Cain? I caution them to be careful about what they say.”

    A little risky. Cain needs all the friends he can get right now, and this won’t make an already leery portion of the media think more hospitably of him.

    By the way, here’s some more small evidence of the Cain campaign’s notoriously inept handling of all this.

    At the beginning of the interview, Innis takes care to say he’s not speaking for the Cain campaign, but Fox News host Jon Scott later objected, saying that Fox News was told he was speaking for the campaign. By the end of the chat, it was unclear whom Innis was actually speaking for.

  • Herman Cain accuser has history of financial troubles, legal squabbles – The emerging portrait of Herman Cain’s most recent accuser shows a suburban homemaker with a history of financial and legal troubles, but one who supporters say has the guts to do the right thing.

    Sharon Bialek, 50, is the fourth woman — and the first publicly — to accuse the Republican presidential hopeful of sexual harassment. In a dramatic news conference Monday in New York, Bialek, a former employee of the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation, said she had sought Cain’s help in finding a new job in July 1997 shortly after the organization had fired her.

    Instead, Bialek said, Cain, who was then head of the restaurant association, reached under her skirt while the two were seated in a parked car and attempted to move her head toward his crotch. Cain’s campaign quickly issued a denial, calling her allegations “completely false.”

    Bialek said she shared her allegations with her then-boyfriend and another male friend shortly after her meeting with Cain. However, the man she is now engaged to said she did not tell him about her history with the former Godfather’s Pizza CEO until Friday night, when she told him she was going to New York for the news conference.

    Her fiance, Mark Harwood, said he was in “a bit of shock” but admired her decision to come forward.

    “It’s not an anti-political thing. It’s not a money thing,” said Harwood, who shares a large, five-bedroom home with Bialek in north suburban Mundelein. “She’s just trying to do the right thing, and that takes guts.”

  • Cain attacks accuser, cites woman’s ‘long and troubled history’ – Herman Cain’s campaign on Tuesday challenged the credibility of Sharon Bialek, who has publicly accused the GOP presidential candidate of making an unwanted sexual advance.

    The campaign released a memo to the press detailing what it characterized as Bialek’s “long and troubled” history, including a 1999 paternity dispute, to argue the public should trust Cain over his latest accuser.

    “In stark contrast to Mr. Cain’s four decades spent climbing the corporate ladder rising to the level of CEO at multiple successful business enterprises, Ms. Bialek has taken a far different path,” the Cain release said.

    “The fact is that Ms. Bialek has had a long and troubled history, from the courts to personal finances – which may help explain why she has come forward 14 years after an alleged incident with Mr. Cain, powered by celebrity attorney and long term Democrat donor Gloria Allred.”

    The Cain campaign goes after Bialek’s employment history and legal record in making its case against her. It lists six civil lawsuits against Bialek, and suggests she has had a troubled worklife.

    “Ms. Bialek has worked for nine employers over the last seventeen years,” the campaign writes.

    Bialek on Monday held a New York press conference to highlight an incident in 1997 in which she said Cain sexually harassed and attempted to grope her. Cain has denied the charges.

    At the time, Cain headed the National Restaurant Association, where Bialek worked for a short time in 1996 and 1997.

    Bialek said she approached Cain for help in finding another job after she left the National Restaurant Association.

    With Allred at her side, Bialek said Cain, after a dinner in Washington, had put his hand under her skirt and reached for her genitals. She also said Cain had taken her head and moved it toward his crotch.

    When Bialek asked Cain to top, she said Cain said, “You want a job, right?”

  • Herman Cain campaign launches attack on accuser Sharon Bialek – Alexander Burns – POLITICO.com – RT @politico: From @aburnspolitico: The Cain camp launches a lengthy attack via email on Sharon Bialek –
  • The Morning Flap: November 8, 2011 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – The Morning Flap: November 8, 2011 #tcot #catcot
share save 120 16 The Afternoon and Evening Flap: November 8, 2011
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share save 120 16 The Sunday Flap: November 6, 2011

These are my links and comments for November 4th through November 6th:

  • Most of the unemployed no longer receive benefits – The jobs crisis has left so many people out of work for so long that most of America’s unemployed are no longer receiving unemployment benefits.

    Early last year, 75 percent were receiving checks. The figure is now 48 percent — a shift that points to a growing crisis of long-term unemployment. Nearly one-third of America’s 14 million unemployed have had no job for a year or more.

    Congress is expected to decide by year’s end whether to continue providing emergency unemployment benefits for up to 99 weeks in the hardest-hit states. If the emergency benefits expire, the proportion of the unemployed receiving aid would fall further.

    The ranks of the poor would also rise. The Census Bureau says unemployment benefits kept 3.2 million people from slipping into poverty last year. It defines poverty as annual income below $22,314 for a family of four.

    Yet for a growing share of the unemployed, a vote in Congress to extend the benefits to 99 weeks is irrelevant. They’ve had no job for more than 99 weeks. They’re no longer eligible for benefits.

    Their options include food stamps or other social programs. Nearly 46 million people received food stamps in August, a record total. That figure could grow as more people lose unemployment benefits.

    So could the government’s disability rolls. Applications for the disability insurance program have jumped about 50 percent since 2007.

    “There’s going to be increased hardship,” said Wayne Vroman, an economist at the Urban Institute.

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  • Bachmann goes after Cain, calls him ‘inconsistent’ – In an interview airing Monday, Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann told radio host Scott Hennen that Herman Cain has been “inconsistent” on key issues — the most forward-leaning attack she has made to date on Cain, who remains neck-and-neck with GOP front-runner Mitt Romney in recent polling.

    Notably, Bachmann declined to directly answer questions about charges of sexual harassment against Cain — dating back to his time running the National Restaurant Association during the 1990s — that have threatened to stall his campaign for a week now, and instead hit him on matters of policy.

    “Well people are looking for an adult in the room. That’s what I am,” Bachmann said, deflecting a question about whether the Cain saga helps her own campaign.

    An excerpt of the interview was made available on a blog run by the co-host of “The Scott Hennen Show.” The interview was taped Friday during a brief telephone call into the show, according to the Bachmann campaign.

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  • Cain/Gingrich in 2012? – Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich were on stage together in what was billed as a classic Lincoln-Douglas style debate. As I sat and watched the entire event, I came away with one vivid impression: Did I just finish watching the Republican presidential ticket in 2012? Cain/Gingrich? Don’t laugh. It could happen. Romney has a ceiling of support and Rick Perry seems stuck in neutral.

    Herman Cain’s poll numbers continue to impress and like Ronald Reagan, he seems to have a Teflon quality to him. Gingrich is steadily rising in the polls due to the fact that voters are starting to realize that this guy is REALLY smart and is an idea factory. Could this be a ticket that provides both style and substance?

    First of all, let’s start with this: They both respect each other and genuinely have a heartfelt friendship. Plus, for those voters concerned with Cain’s policy chops bringing on Gingrich could placate some wary voters. When I watched them on stage together Saturday night you could tell that Cain would LOVE to have Gingrich as his VP candidate. He even gave a big hint when he asked Gingrich the following question:

    Herman Cain to Newt Gingrich: “If you were Vice President of the United States, what would you want the President to assign you to do first? (Gingrich then began to laugh heartily)

    Probably Romney – Gingrich is more likely.

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  • DeMint: No king to make, no candidate to back – My colleague Marc Thiessen breaks some news in reporting that Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) will not be endorsing a Republican presidential candidate in the primary. This is a surprising but understandable recognition (as Bill Kristol did in his own way) that there is no viable not-Romney in the race.

    Anyone who expected he might endorse Mitt Romney hasn’t been paying much attention to either the GOP race or DeMint’s role in the Tea Party movement. When DeMint did offer supportive words for Romney, he was beset by angry activists and soon backed off. DeMint is not about to sacrifice his role as a prominent Tea Party leader by endorsing the not-Tea Party candidate, Mitt Romney. DeMint and Romney most likely both know such an endorsement would be worthless in any event. DeMint’s followers wouldn’t follow his lead on this one; Romney supporters and potential supporters are not the type to be swayed by the hard-line DeMint.

    The real news here is that DeMint couldn’t find anyone else to back. If he could champion a viable Tea Party type, he certainly wouldn’t hesitate to be kingmaker. But really, who’s he going to back? It’s evident the Herman Cain phenomenon is dissolving. (In his Lincoln-Douglas style debate with Newt Gingrich Saturday, Cain, in passing on the first question about Medicare, once again showed he’s not well-informed enough to be a credible blogger, let alone a presidential candidate.)

    Texas Gov. Rick Perry was supposed to be the credible Tea Party-friendly alternative to Romney. DeMint’s decision not to give him a hand highlights just how far Perry’s fortunes have fallen. One has to think back to the forum DeMint hosting over Labor Day. Perry had accepted, campaigned in South Carolina and then canceled at the last minute, citing the Texas wildfires, even though DeMint offered to flip the order of speakers and let Perry go first. From hindsight, after a series of dreadful debates, one can surmise that Perry wasn’t all that anxious anyway to be grilled on constitutional issues. But standing up DeMint probably didn’t endear him to the South Carolina senator.

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  • A year left: Obama running against history – With today marking the one-year countdown to Election Day 2012 and his approval rating stuck in the low 40s, President Obama will have to defy American electoral history if he is to win re-election.

    At 43 percent approval in a Gallup poll conducted Oct. 28-30, Mr. Obama recently referred to himself as an “underdog” — with good reason. Of all the presidents since World War II whose job-approval scores were lower than 50 percent one year before Election Day, only one went on to win a second term.

    That was President Nixon, whose job approval stood at 49 percent in November 1971. He rebounded to defeat Democrat George McGovern in a landslide in 1972.

    Mr. Obama does have some advantages. He is still a formidable fundraiser, having amassed more than $150 million for his campaign and the Democratic National Committee this year.

    Also, his re-election operation is more robust than any of the GOP camps, which are waging a long and costly primary battle. Mr. Obama’s campaign is able to build on a 50-state network from 2008, an email list of more than 9 million potential supporters and an experienced staff with unequaled savvy in digital marketing and social networking.

    In early polling of head-to-head matchups with potential GOP candidates, Mr. Obama comes out on top in nearly every instance. One poll in the battleground state of Florida this week showed former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney tied with Mr. Obama.

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  • @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-11-06 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-11-06 #tcot #catcot
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  • foursquare

     

    :: Gregory Flap @ Ronnie’s Diner – After 9 mile run breakfast with Alice, Marianne, Tara, Nancy (@ Ronnie’s Diner)

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  • @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-11-05 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-11-05 #tcot #catcot
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  • Medscape: Medscape Access – Medscape: Medscape Access
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  • Medscape: Medscape Access – Medscape: Medscape Access
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  • Flap’s Blog.com Links and Comments for November 4th | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Flap’s Links and Comments for November 4th #tcot #catcot
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  • Medscape: Medscape Access – Vaccination Exemptions Rise in California Amid Concerns
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  • Medscape: Medscape Access – Stroke Damage to Insular Cortex Boosts Smoking Cessation
share save 120 16 The Sunday Flap: November 6, 2011
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