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share save 120 16 The Morning Flap: November 20, 2012

These are my links for November 19th through November 20th:

  • California, Home of the Destitute- Today, California is the most spectacular failure of our time. Its government is broke. Productive citizens have been fleeing for some years now, selling their homes at inflated prices (until recently) and moving to Colorado, Arizona, Texas and even Minnesota, like one of my neighbors. The results of California’s improvident liberalism have been tragically easy to predict: absurd public sector wage and benefit packages, a declining tax base, surging welfare enrollment, falling economic production, ever-increasing deficits. Soon, California politicians will be looking to less glamorous states for bailout money. Things have now devolved to the point where California leads the nation in poverty:The Golden State’s poverty rate is a whopping 23.5 percent – higher than the District of Columbia, at 23.2 percent, and even Florida, and 19.5 percent.This is based on the federal government’s new poverty measure, and California suffered a bit because of its high cost of living, but that is a minor point–by any measure, California is number one in destitution. The cause is obvious: liberal Democrats have held unimpeded sway in California, just as they have in Detroit, Illinois, Miami, the District, and so on. Everywhere, the results have been similar. Where liberal policies are implemented, productive citizens fade away and poverty follows.
  • Cows Flee California Seeking a Better Economic Climate- It’s not just millionaires and billionaires who are fleeing the economic madness in California. Even cows are starting to depart for greener pastures. That’s right, 400 bovine refugees shuffled off to Kansas just this month, with more expected to follow as over 100 dairy farms in California close their doors.Why are cows voting with their hooves?
  • Opinion: President Obama won, but Obamacare didn’t – Carrie Lukas – POLITICO.com- During the campaign, President Barack Obama minimized discussion of his first term’s most consequential new law: the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or what’s commonly referred to as Obamacare.That was no accident. Undoubtedly, the campaign knew that Obamacare is, as it always has been, deeply unpopular with the American people. In fact, Obamacare epitomizes the public’s greatest concerns about this administration: the massive expansion of government and failure to deliver a new era of post-partisanship to Washington, since the law was jammed through using a party line vote and every available legislative trick. Bringing up health care risked stirring the passions that fueled the tea party’s rise and the Democrats’ defeat in 2010.Yet, research conducted by the polling company, inc./WomanTrend for Independent Women’s Voice (IWV) shows that health care was an important concern for Americans on Election Day. The president was reelected in spite of voters’ lingering distaste for Obamacare, and the health care issue will remain a critical issue for voters moving forward.Just a quarter, or 26 percent of those surveyed by the polling company on Election Day supported implementing Obamacare completely. Even less than half (48 percent) of self-identified Democrats want full implementation, suggesting that the health care law remains a liability, even within the president’s party.Forty-three percent of voters surveyed want Congress to either “just repeal the law” (30 percent) or move toward repeal, while pursuing other measures – including defunding, amending, and blocking – to prevent its implementation (13 percent). Another quarter (23 percent) favor amending the law, rather than full repeal.
  • Report: Paula Broadwell’s threat to Jill Kelley – Paula Broadwell allegedly threatened to make Jill Kelley “go away,” the New York Daily News reported Tuesday, in the latest twist in a sex scandal that has ensnared top U.S. national security officials.
    Broadwell, the ex-mistress of retired Gen. David Petraeus — who stepped down from his post as head of the CIA over his extramarital affair with her — allegedly sent threatening emails to Kelley, a Tampa socialite who is reportedly a friend of Petraeus’s.
  • Oklahoma is latest to reject state-based health exchange- Add Oklahoma to the list of Republican-led states that won’t implement the key feature of President Obama’s healthcare law.Gov. Mary Fallin said Monday that she won’t set up a state-based insurance exchange — a new portal where people who don’t get insurance through their employers can shop for coverage, often with help from a federal subsidy.”It does not benefit Oklahoma taxpayers to actively support and fund a new government program that will ultimately be under the control of the federal government, that is opposed by a clear majority of Oklahomans, and that will further the implementation of a law that threatens to erode both the quality of American healthcare and the fiscal stability of the nation,” Fallin said in a statement.Republican governors are under pressure from conservatives not to set up their own exchanges. It’s seen as the best chance to stand in the way of the Affordable Care Act now that Obama’s reelection has protected the law from legislative repeal.
  • 4 California men allegedly supported Taliban- Jihadist social media postings helped lead to the arrest and charging of four Los Angeles area men, who were allegedly on their way to Afghanistan to train with the Taliban and join al Qaeda, federal officials said.They were also plotting to kill American soldiers and bomb government installations, according to a joint statement Monday by the FBI and the U.S. Attorney in Los Angeles.One of the men, a U.S. citizen born in Afghanistan, encouraged two of the others to embrace violent Islamic doctrine by introducing them online to radical teachings, including those of deceased U.S.-born al-Qaeda imam Anwar al-Awlaki.The three exposed their connection to each other and their radical leanings explicitly on Facebook for over a year. And one of them detailed his intentions to participate in jihad in an online chat with an FBI employee.Another man was recruited at a later point to join the other three in their training.
  • Tax loopholes alone can’t solve fiscal cliff- Raise revenues and reform the Tax Code? Easy — just eliminate all the tax loopholes, right?Good luck with that.“Eliminating loopholes” sounds a lot better than “raising rates”: The tax rate is what I pay, and a loophole is what the other guy gets.But the biggest loopholes in the U.S. Tax Code — generally referred to as tax expenditures — aren’t just the tricks of the trade for millionaires with offshore bank accounts. For the vast majority of Americans, they’re just how things work: You don’t pay taxes on your health insurance or Medicare benefits; you contribute tax-free to your 401(k); and your mortgage interest pushes down your tax bill each year.And even if you dump the biggest of the set, these tax perks don’t even come close to closing the deficit. At best, the top 10 would pull in an extra $834 billion a year, according to Joint Committee on Taxation figures. Considering the hole lawmakers are trying to fill is several trillion dollars large, it’s clear they wouldn’t even come close
  • Red-State Senate Democrats May Be Hard to Corral on Cliff- Senate Democrats, optimistic about prospects for a deficit-reduction deal, may have to contend with wariness from seven members who face 2014 re-election campaigns in states Mitt Romney won Nov. 6.Some of those seven Democrats, including North Carolina’s Kay Hagan and Louisiana ’s Mary Landrieu, say they aren’t ready to commit to President Barack Obama’s proposals for boosting tax revenue. Instead, Hagan isn’t ruling out support for extending the George W. Bush-era tax cuts for top earners. Landrieu said she opposes eliminating tax breaks for oil companies.Possible Democratic defections heighten the need for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to woo Republican support for a deal to avert the so-called fiscal cliff — $607 billion in tax increases and spending cuts set to begin taking effect in January. Lame-duck Republican Senators Scott Brown of Massachusetts, Olympia Snowe of Maine and Richard Lugar of Indiana are potential candidates.
  • Portman and Cruz plan to focus on fundraising, recruitment for NRSC- The new vice chairmen of the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) have unusually specific tasks heading into 2014: fundraising and recruitment.Both elements are crucial to a successful election cycle, and the early, precise focus by newly elected Chairman Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) demonstrates a shake-up in committee structure meant to avoid the losses that plagued Republicans in 2012.Moran has tasked Sen.-elect Ted Cruz (R-Texas) with grassroots and Hispanic outreach. Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) has been given the goal of energizing donors fatigued from an election in which they saw a disappointing return on their investments.The trio has met at least twice since the announcement of new NRSC leadership last Wednesday, and a senior Moran aide said the three will continue to meet and discuss plans for 2014 over the phone until they all return to the Senate in January.
  • Boehner tightens grip on GOP rank and file ahead of deficit talks- Speaker John Boehner is tightening his grip on the House Republican Conference weeks before an anticipated vote on a deficit deal.The Ohio Republican has smoothed over differences with Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), expanded his powers on the panel that doles out plum committee assignments, shot down a challenge to his earmark moratorium and worked behind the scenes to ensure that Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) would win her leadership contest.All of Boehner’s moves are aimed at shoring up his influence over the GOP conference, which in turn maximizes the Speaker’s leverage with President Obama and the Democratic-controlled Senate.
  • Is Rush Limbaugh’s Country Gone?- William Bennett, conservative stalwart, television commentator and secretary of education under President Reagan, complained on the CNN Web site that Democrats have been successful in settingthe parameters and focus of the national and political dialogue as predominantly about gender, race, ethnicity and class. This is the paradigm, the template through which many Americans, probably a majority, more or less view the world, our country, and the election. It is a divisive strategy and Democrats have targeted and exploited those divides. How else can we explain that more young people now favor socialism to capitalism?In fact, the 2011 Pew Research Center poll Bennett cites demonstrates that in many respects conservatives are right to be worried:Not only does a plurality (49-43) of young people hold a favorable view of socialism — and, by a tiny margin (47-46), a negative view of capitalism — so do liberal Democrats, who view socialism positively by a solid 59-33; and African Americans, 55-36. Hispanics are modestly opposed, 49-44, to socialism, but they hold decisively negative attitudes toward capitalism, 55-32.
  • The GOP Consultant Class Blames Me- RUSH: Couple of sound bites. First, Mike Murphy. He is a Republican consultant. He was on Meet the Press yesterday, and among other things, he said this.MURPHY: The biggest problem that Romney had was the Republican primary. That’s what’s driving the Republican brand right now to a disaster, and we’ve got to get, kind of, a party view of America that’s not right out of Rush Limbaugh’s dream journal.RUSH: You gotta get a view of the Republican Party that is not right out of my dream journal. What, folks, did I or any of you have to do with the Republican primary? Did not Murphy get the candidate he wanted? All these consultants, do you realize they get rich no matter who wins or loses? Little-known secret. They get rich no matter who wins or loses. But the Republican primary, as far as he’s concerned there were too many conservatives in it saying too many stupid things.We need to get rid of conservatism, is what is he’s saying. We need to get rid of all these people shouting stupid conservative stuff, and that’s where it happened at the primary, and that’s where Romney lost the election because of all the conservatives branding the party. Romney was not able to recover from that. Steve Schmidt. He’s back. He can’t let go of me. This is University of Delaware panel discussion last Wednesday.
  • Hostess mediation: Judge delays hearing to allow Hostess, unions to work out issues- Hostess Brands Inc. agreed in court on Monday to enter private mediation with its lenders and leaders of a striking union to try to avert the liquidation of the maker of Twinkies snack cakes and Wonder Bread.Hostess, its lenders and the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union (BCTGM) agreed to mediation at the urging of Bankruptcy Judge Robert Drain of the Southern District of New York, who advised against a more expensive, public hearing regarding the company’s liquidation.”My desire to do this is prompted primarily by the potential loss of over 18,000 jobs as well as my belief that there is a possibility to resolve this matter,” Drain said.The 82-year-old Hostess was seeking permission to liquidate its business, claiming that its operations have been crippled by a bakers strike and that winding down is the best way to preserve its dwindling cash.
  • California officials release results of first cap-and-trade auction- The California Air Resources Board today released the results of the state’s inaugural cap-and-trade auction.The auction took place on Wednesday.Cap-and-trade is a system designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in California. Under the system, businesses including refineries, power plants and large factories will be capped at 90 percent of current emissions. Those businesses must then buy credits at auction or on the open market in order to be allowed to continue to produce at current levels.Businesses could also meet their regulatory burdens by lowering emissions.Cap-and-trade goes into effect in 2013.The newly-released report on the auction shows businesses purchased all 23.1 million emissions credits that were up for bid.

    The settlement price for accepted bids in the auction was $10.09.

    CARB has estimated that a $10 price for emissions allowances could add 10 cents to the price of a gallon of gasoline.

  • Another Victory for Challengers of HHS Mandate – The HHS contraceptive mandate suffered another loss last Friday—its third loss in the four decisions that have addressed the merits of the claim that the HHS mandate violates the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). In a thorough opinion in Tyndale House Publishers v. Sebelius, Judge Reggie B. Walton of the federal district court for the District of Columbia granted a preliminary injunction that bars the federal government from penalizing a publishing house for its religiously based refusal to provide insurance coverage for contraceptives that also operate as abortifacients.
  • Exercise Gains Momentum as Psychiatric Treatment- The benefits of exercise in nearly every aspect of physical health are well known, but evidence in recent years suggests a unique effect on some psychiatric disorders, prompting mental health clinicians to rethink treatment strategies and to consider the possibility of exercise not just in therapy but as therapy.”Above and beyond the standard benefits of exercise in healthy living and general well-being, there is strong evidence demonstrating the ability of exercise to in fact treat mental illness and have significant benefits on a neurotrophic, neurobiologic basis,” Douglas Noordsy, MD, told delegates attending Psych Congress 2012: US Psychiatric and Mental Health Congress.Some of the strongest evidence is seen in depression, where psychiatric benefits from exercise have been shown in some cases to match those achieved with pharmacologic interventions and to persist to prevent remission in the long term.
  • Asian American voters go heavily for Obama in California- Latino voters are credited with helping swing the vote for Barack Obama, but the rapidly growing Asian American electorate supported the incumbent by an even broader margin. According to Edison Research’s exit polls, 73 percent of Asian Americans nationwide voted for Obama, while 71 percent of Latinos did so. In California, 79 percent of Asian Americans favored Obama.In 1992, 31 percent of Asian Americans preferred the Democratic nominee, but that number has grown in each subsequent election since. The Asian American population, meanwhile, has increased 32 percent over the past decade alone.While they represented just 3.4 percent of the national vote, Asian Americans accounted for 11 percent of the California vote, according to Edison Research. Voter registration tallies show Orange County Asian American voters running nearly 5 points greater than the statewide share, according to Political Data.By 2050, Asian Americans will account for 10 percent of the nation’s voters and at least 20 percent of the state’s voters, according to Taeku Lee, a UC Berkeley political scientist and co-author of the National Asian American Survey.
  • Orlando Health eliminates 400 jobs through layoffs and attrition- For the first time in its nearly 100-year history, Orlando Health is reducing its workforce by up to 400 positions starting immediately, hospital officials announced this morning.The elimination of 300 to 400 jobs will occur in two phases, and represents a 2- to 3-percent decrease in the system’s 16,000 employees, said Orlando Health spokeswoman Kena Lewis. The reductions affect all departments and all eight of its hospitals, including Orlando Regional Medical Center and Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children.The first wave of employees affected by the “labor expense reduction” portion of the initiative received their notices Friday, said Lewis. The next wave of downsizing will happen after the first of the year.
  • McClintock: Election will bring pain to CA- Abraham Lincoln said that if the voters get their backsides too close to the fire, they’ll just have to sit on the blisters for a while. After the Nov. 6 election, Californians have some very nasty blisters to sit on.However, after pain, enlightenment usually comes. If not, California pharmacies will be selling out of salve.
  • Austin company creates app that helped Obama campaign- Political experts say the just-completed presidential race involved more spending by both sides on information technology than ever before.Some of that spending was on applications for mobile devices as a way to reach out to both supporters and volunteers.That is why a small Austin digital design firm, Thirteen23, found itself working furiously from May through July to create the app the Obama campaign wanted.The Obama campaign had worked with Square Inc., a mobile payments company, on an app that could let supporters contribute to the campaign over their smartphones. When the campaign wanted a bigger, more elaborate app, Square referred them to Thirteen23, which it had previously done work with.The 11-person Austin firm hadn’t done political projects before, but executive director Doug Cook said it liked the challenge of creating a vital two-way online communication link between the campaign and its supporters and volunteers.While some campaigns had already used smartphone apps to push out information to supporters, this application was seen as something far more complex.

    “We said, if we are going to build an app, lets make tools that make people effective. Lets give volunteers tools that they can use,” said Ryan Hovenweep, the firm’s creative director.

    The app would provide localized information about campaign events to supporters. But it also gave volunteer workers the tools to canvass potential voters house to house and to report back their findings to the campaign’s computers.

    “With a smartphone in hand, you can go talk to people and get information,” Hovenweep said. “With the app, they are immediately taking the information from the ground and putting it back into the campaign database.”

    With a tight deadline and the order to create an useful, complex app for volunteers, the company threw itself into the project in May and delivered software to the Obama campaign in July. The Obama campaign released the first version of software, for iPhone users, at the end of July. The Android version was delivered a few weeks later.

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share save 120 16 The Morning Flap: October 18, 2012

Newsweek Out of Print The Morning Flap: October 18, 2012

These are my links for October 17th through October 18th:

  • Obama needs to win back the hearts of the country – Obama Needs to Win the Not-So-Optomistic- Barack Obama won the hope vote in 2008. Now, to keep the White House, President Obama needs to win back the disappointed.Michael Jones is one of them. Jones, one of the questioners during Tuesday night’s debate, wanted to know what the president has done to earn his support in 2012. This time around, “I’m not that optimistic,” said Jones.Obama’s answer to a critical voter concern was one of his weakest and one of challenger Mitt Romney’s strongest. It’s partly because Obama never got a chance to respond to his rival, but also because Obama didn’t seize the opportunity when Jones first presented to him.You could picture Bill Clinton telling the citizen-questioner in deeply personal terms how hard he is working on his behalf and how hard he would continue to work in a second term. Candidate Clinton showed how that’s done in a 1992 town hall debate that came to symbolize his unique ability to connect viscerally with ordinary people — even as it illustrated President George H.W. Bush’s inability to do so.
  • Rove: Obama Won the Debate but Is Losing the Argument- Americans on Tuesday night watched what was the most ferocious presidential debate ever. Barack Obama and Mitt Romney circled and interrupted each other, jabbed fingers, got into each other’s space, and exchanged verbal body blows for 90 minutes at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y.Yet it did not change the campaign’s dynamic. President Obama won the postdebate polls, but he’s losing the argument.In CNN’s insta-poll, 46% said Mr. Obama did the “best job” while 39% chose Mr. Romney. And in CBS’s survey of uncommitted voters, 37% said Mr. Obama won the night while 30% gave it to Mr. Romney. But to reverse the GOP challenger’s momentum, the president required nearly as big a victory Tuesday as Mr. Romney had last week. He didn’t get it.
  • Massive study finds only 3.4% of American adults identify as LGBT- A massive new survey published this morning reveals that only 3.4% of American adults publicly identify themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender, with the highest percentage coming among the younger, less-educated non-whites.The new Gallup Poll of more than 121,000 adult, the largest of its kind on record, wass conducted during the past four months. It finds the percentage of self-reported LGBT Americans to be much smaller than a general impression derived from their presence in popular culture and their perceived influence in liberal American politics.The special report found 3.4% of adult Americans publicly reporting themselves as personally identifying with those categories, 92.2% saying they do not and 4.4% refusing to say or claiming not to know.Given the stigma often attached by some to those categories, some unknown portion of the Didn’t Say’s and No’s presumably are choosing to remain in the closet, holding down the LGBT number somewhat.

    “This initial analysis,” Gallup reports, “reveals new insights into the composition of the LGBT community in the U.S. In particular, the findings challenge both media and cultural stereotypes to reveal that the LGBT population is in a number of ways not that different from the broader U.S. population.”

  • In full-page newspaper ad, 13 Iowa voters apologize for supporting Obama in 2008- A full-page Mitt Romney campaign ad in today’s Cedar Rapids Gazette takes the form of an open letter from 13 Iowans who say they voted for President Barack Obama in 2008 but regret their choice and won’t do so again in 2012.The letter is phrased as an apology, and lays out a case for why Romney, the Republican nominee is a better choice this time around.“Mitt Romney will deliver the real recovery that President Obama has failed to bring, he’ll get Americans working again, and he’ll turn our economy around,” the letter says
  • Report: Obama campaign turning grim on Florida, Virginia, North Carolina — and Colorado? – It’s not that Romney has insurmountable leads in FL, VA, and NC, it’s that Team O has to decide how to allocate what’s left of its campaign treasury down the stretch and there are better bets for them than those three states. Triage, in other words. Mitt’s up 4.7 points on average in North Carolina, which would be tough for O to make up, and 2.5 points in Florida, which might be doable but would be hugely expensive in terms of reserving enough ad time to make a dent. I’m a little surprised to see Virginia included — O actually leads there by eight-tenths of a point, although Romney’s (narrowly) won the last three polls, so maybe Obama’s campaign figures it’s not worth resisting that momentum in a state they don’t really need. They do kind of need Colorado, though, and that actually looks tougher than Virginia for them at the moment: Romney leads by seven-tenths of a point and has won six of the nine polls taken since the first debate. If I had to guess, I’d bet they’re looking at Virginia and Colorado now as an either/or situation; if Romney’s lead opens a bit in one rather than the other, that one will be written off and an investment made in the closer state.
  • Terrorist arrested after trying to ‘destroy America’ with Fed Reserve Bank attack- A young Bangladeshi on a mission to “destroy America” tried to blow up the Federal Reserve Bank in lower Manhattan Wednesday with what he thought was a 1,000-pound van bomb, according to a criminal complaint.Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis, 21, allegedly wanted to kill scores of people, wreak havoc on the US economy and stop the presidential election when he parked on Liberty Street around 8 a.m. and repeatedly dialed into the cellphone detonator from a nearby hotel room.But all he did was set off an indicator in the van that proved he tried to set off the explosion. He was promptly arrested, with his grand plans up in smoke.“I don’t want something that’s like small. I just want something big,” Nafis, 21, told an undercover agent during a recorded August meeting in Central Park.

    “Something very big. Very very very very big, that will shake the whole country . . . that will make us one step closer to run the whole world. I want to do something that brothers coming after us can be inspired by us.”

    The al Qaeda-obsessed terrorist — who was living with relatives in Queens — also recorded a video addressed to Americans right before he tried to detonate the bomb.

  • A Turn of the Page for Newsweek – Out of Print- We are announcing this morning an important development at Newsweek and The Daily Beast. Newsweek will transition to an all-digital format in early 2013. As part of this transition, the last print edition in the United States will be our Dec. 31 issue.Meanwhile, Newsweek will expand its rapidly growing tablet and online presence, as well as its successful global partnerships and events business.Newsweek Global, as the all-digital publication will be named, will be a single, worldwide edition targeted for a highly mobile, opinion-leading audience who want to learn about world events in a sophisticated context. Newsweek Global will be supported by paid subscription and will be available through e-readers for both tablet and the Web, with select content available on The Daily Beast.Four years ago we launched The Daily Beast. Two years later, we merged our business with the iconic Newsweek magazine—which The Washington Post Company had sold to Dr. Sidney Harman. Since the merger, both The Daily Beast and Newsweek have continued to post and publish distinctive journalism and have demonstrated explosive online growth in the process. The Daily Beast now attracts more than 15 million unique visitors a month, a 70 percent increase in the past year alone—a healthy portion of this traffic generated each week by Newsweek’s strong original journalism.
  • Scott Adams Blog: Firing Offense – Endorses Romney- Romney is likely to continue the same drug policies as the Obama administration. But he’s enough of a chameleon and a pragmatist that one can’t be sure. And I’m fairly certain he’d want a second term. He might find it “economical” to use federal resources in other ways than attacking California voters. And he is vocal about promoting states’ rights, so he’s got political cover for ignoring dispensaries in states where medical marijuana is legal.So while I don’t agree with Romney’s positions on most topics, I’m endorsing him for president starting today. I think we need to set a minimum standard for presidential behavior, and jailing American citizens for political gain simply has to be a firing offense no matter how awesome you might be in other ways.
  • The schedule becomes the story- e are at the point now in the race for the White House where decisions must be made by both campaigns on where to spend precious time in the final days of this race, as what seems like a simple decision not to campaign in a certain state can quickly blossom into a major story.The number of swing states I have been watching is ten – New Hampshire, Virginia, North Carolina, Florida, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa, Colorado and Nevada.With 19 days until Election Day, how many times will the President and Mitt Romney get to those states? Will any of them go wanting?The President spent the day after the second Obama-Romney debate in Iowa and Ohio; as I wrote earlier in the week, don’t underestimate the importance of Iowa’s six Electoral Votes.

    “We’re in Iowa and Ohio today specifically because early voting has already started,” Obama Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters on Air Force One. “As you know, that’s a key part of our strategy.”

    Reporters then asked about speculation that the Obama campaign might be easing off the pedal in some southern states – specifically, Florida, North Carolina and Virginia.

    “The same states that were in play and that we’re competing in every single day are the same states today as they were three weeks ago,” Psaki said. “And that includes Florida, and that includes North Carolina.”

    But the schedule already tells a story about North Carolina.

  • My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-10-17 – Locum Tenens (Temporary) Dentist – Gregory Cole, D.D.S. – My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-10-17
  • Gallup: Mid-October U.S. Unemployment Rate Falls to 7.3 Per Cent – Flap’s Blog – Gallup: Mid-October U.S. Unemployment Rate Falls to 7.3 Per Cent #tcot
  • The Morning Flap: October 17, 2012 – Flap’s Blog – The Morning Flap: October 17, 2012 #tcot
  • Trooth.Com – The David Nicholls DDS Interview Part Two – Flap’s Blog – – The David Nicholls DDS Interview Part Two #tcot
  • A President Without a Plan- President Obama bounced off the canvas with a more spirited debate at Hofstra University on Tuesday night, as everyone expected he would. He was animated and on the attack. The question we kept asking as the evening wore on, however, is what does he want to do for the next four years?At least two questioners put the point directly, yet Mr. Obama never provided much of an answer. Sure, he wants to hire 100,000 more teachers, as if there is the money to hire them or it would make much difference to student outcomes.He wants to invest in “solar and wind and biofuels, energy-efficient cars,” which probably means more Solyndras and A123s (see nearby). He wants to raise taxes on the rich—that’s one thing he’s really passionate about. Oh, and he does want to pass the immigration reform he said he’d propose four years ago but never did propose in his first two years when his party controlled Congress and he might have passed it.But otherwise, what’s his case for four more years? Judging by Tuesday’s debate, the President’s argument for re-election is basically this: He’s not as awful as Mitt Romney. Mr. Obama spent most of his time attacking either Mr. Romney himself (he invests in Chinese companies), his tax plan as a favor for the rich (“that’s been his history”) or this or that statement he has made over the last year (“the 47%,” which Mr. Obama saved for the closing word of the entire debate).
  • Record High Enrollment for Food Stamps: 46,681,833 Million- Food stamps enrollment has hit a new record high. 46,681,833 million are now enrolled in the social welfare program, according to the United States Department of Agriculture, the federal department that runs the program.As the chart shows, when President Obama took office, enrollment in the food stamps program was 31.98 million. Now, not even four years later, it’s a whopping 46.48 million. (In 2002, as the chart states, “19.1 million Americans received food stamps.”)In fact, the newly released data represents enrollment in July (the last month for which data is available). Assuming the program remained on its projected path, the number of those enrolled in food stamps is likely now larger by several hundreds of thousands.”USDA has engaged in an aggressive outreach and promotional campaign to boost food stamp enrollment. Among these efforts are an ongoing partnership with the Mexican government to advertise food stamps to Mexican nationals, migrant workers, and non-citizen immigrants. Partly as a result of these efforts, the number of non-citizens on food stamps has quadrupled since 2001,” explains the Republican side of the Senate Budget Committee.

    And the cost, the committee explains, is astronomical. “Total spending on food stamps is projected to reach nearly $800 billion over the next 10 years, with no fewer than 1 in 9 people on the program at any given time. Neither food stamp participation nor spending on the program are ever projected to return to pre-recession levels at any point in the next 10 years.”

  • A new, improved Barack Obama shows up for the second debate but fails to halt Mitt Romney’s momentum- President Barack Obama needed a game-changing night here in Hampstead, New York and Mitt Romney made sure he didn’t get it. Over the 90 minutes, Obama might have edged it – just – but strategically he did little if anything to blunt Romney’s growing advantage.Just as Al Gore over-compensated for his poor first debate in 2000, we saw a completely different Obama this time around. He had clearly had some intensive coaching from his debate prep team and was acting under orders to do change everything. Romney strategist Stuart Stevens quipped afterwards that he became ‘Joe Biden without the charm’.The problem is that the difference was so stark it was jarring. And by throwing everything but the kitchen sink at Romney – we had tax rates, Bain, big bird and the 47 per cent – there was more than a whiff of desperation. While Obama flung mud, Romney was intent on dismantling Obama’s record in office.
  • Windows Pushes Into the Tablet Age – WSJ.com – Windows Pushes Into the Tablet Age – #tcot
  • ESPN: The Worldwide Leader In Sports – RT @darrenrovell BREAKING: Nike has terminated the contract of Lance Armstrong. More to come on .
  • Twitter / waltmossberg: Here’s a visual guide to the … – Here’s a visual guide to the new Windows 8 interface. Read my full review at .
  • Windows Pushes Into the Tablet Age – WSJ.com – Here’s a visual guide to the new Windows 8 interface. Read my full review at .
  • The Hill’s 50 races to watch – The Hill’s Ballot Box – RT @thehill The Hill’s 50 congressional races to watch #tcot
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