• Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for July 27th on 14:23

    These are my links for July 27th from 14:23 to 15:29:

    • White House ‘rickrolls’ Twitter critic – Tensions may be high in Washington amid a stalemate in talks to raise the US debt ceiling but the White House is keeping a sense of humor.
      White House officials were replying to questions on Twitter on Wednesday when a Tennessee man named David Wiggs complained that the discussion was "not nearly as entertaining as yesterday's."
      The White House quickly fired off a reply to @wiggsd on its Twitter feed, @whitehouse.
      "@wiggsd Sorry to hear that," the White House said. "Fiscal policy is important, but can be dry sometimes.
      "Here's something more fun: tinyurl.com/y8ufsnp."
      The link is to a video by pop star Rick Astley singing his 1987 chart-topper "Never Gonna Give You Up."
      "Rickrolling" is an Internet phenomenon begun several years ago whereby an unwitting user who clicks on a link is directed to the video of Astley's song.


      Glad they have the time to do this on the taxpayer's dime.

    • Will Janice Hahn Run For The "Black" Seat After Redistricting? – Newly minted Rep. Janice Hahn faces a tough choice if she wants to stay in Congress for more than a year. By the looks of the latest redistricting maps, she will be drawn into a coastal district that also includes Rep. Henry Waxman.

      Waxman has been in Congress for 36 years, and is as close as it gets to an immovable object. So that leaves Hahn with one other option: run for the "Gardena-Compton" seat.

      The problem with that is it's supposed to be a "black" seat — and Hahn is not black.

      The idea that she would run for the seat — and cut L.A.'s black representation in Congress from three seats to two — is already stirring anger among the black political community.

      In an email making the rounds today, activist Basil Kimbrew accuses Hahn of having "disrespected and betrayed the black community." Kimbrew claims that Hahn told him she will run for the Gardena-Compton seat, which also includes Hahn's home in San Pedro.

      Kimbrew goes on to say that African-Americans who worked to elect Hahn in her special election were "duped" and "tricked" — and would have been better off supporting Secretary of State Debra Bowen.

      Also running for the Gardena-Compton seat are Assemblyman Isadore Hall and Rep. Laura Richardson. Hahn represented Watts on the L.A. City Council and has enjoyed strong support in the black community, in part due to the legacy of her father, Supervisor Kenneth Hahn.


      Janice Hahn should enjoy her time in DC and hope to get a job in the second term of the Obama Administration.

  • Craig Huey,  Janice Hahn

    CA-36: Does Rep. Elect Janice Hahn Have Time to Celebrate?

    Los Angeles City councilwoman Janice Hahn celebrates victory with her campaign staff in 36th Congressional District race Tuesday night July 12, 2011 at her election party at Ports O’ Call Restaurant in San Pedro. Hahn defeated Republican Craig Huey in a bitter contest for a Southern California House seat, preserving the party’s hold on the district and surviving an unusually tough race in a Democratic stronghold

    Maybe for a day or so and then that is it.

    Los Angeles City Councilwoman Janice Hahn won’t have much time to savor her victory in Tuesday’s special election for a South Bay-area congressional seat before she has to run again — and in a district that could soon see significant changes.

    Hahn, a Democrat in an area where her party enjoys an 18-point registration edge, defeated Republican Craig Huey, 54.6% to 45.4%. But she’ll need to start campaigning again soon, as next year’s primary is less than a year away.

    All eyes, including those of the defeated Republican Craig Huey will be on the California Citizen’s Redistricting Commission. When their final Congressional District maps are released in August, then the campaign for 2012 begins a new. I suspect that Hahn will again have to face off against Craig Huey.

    Hence, when all of the precincts are counted and the votes mapped, political assessments will be calculated.

    Under the first proposed maps released by the Citizens Redistricting Commission last month, Hahn’s turf would lose Venice and some other communities at the north end dominated by the Democratic Party and pick up the more Republican-friendly Palos Verdes Peninsula on the south. It would more closely resemble its configuration in 1998, the year then-GOP Assemblyman Steven T. Kuykendall defeated Hahn in her first bid for the seat.

    That was one of the closest House races in the country. Two years later, Harman defeated Kuykendall of Rancho Palos Verdes. In 2001 the district, along with others in California, was redrawn in a deal the two major parties cut to protect incumbents.

    And, remember in California, it is a top two system. With a more GOP oriented district and with perhaps two incumbent Democratic Representatives thrown into the newly configured CA-36, Janice Hahn may face two tough election fights. Or, may not survive next June’s (or February’s) primary election.

    Tuesday night’s victory dance for Janice Hahn may be short-lived.

  • Craig Huey,  Janice Hahn

    CA-36: The Michael Barone Analysis of the Race Between Janice Hahn and Craig Huey

    Washington political punidt Michael Barone is partially correct in his analysis of the 9 or 10 point loss of Republican Craig Huey to Democrat Janice Hahn yesterday.

    The Los Angeles County elections director has tweeted that Democrat Janice Hahn beat Republican Craig Huey in yesterday’s California 36th congressional district special election by a 55%-45% margin. This is in a district that Barack Obama carried 64%-34% in 2008. In other words, the Democrat ran 9% behind Obama and the Republican ran 11% ahead of John McCain. (…)

    California 36, in contrast, is an affluent area along the Los Angeles County beachfront, heavily white (look at this terrific New York Times interactive graphic showing the predominant racial group: the coast is a white bastion penned in by black and Hispanic interior areas in Los Angeles County). Historically Republican, primarily because of economic issues, it trended heavily toward Democrats in the 1990s. Republican nominee Craig Huey was spectacularly out of line with the district on cultural issues, but managed to get 45% of the vote anyway. I take this result as evidence of significant erosion in Obama/Democratic support in affluent white areas that are part of large metropolitan areas—a key part of the Democratic national coalition since 1996. (…)

    CA-36 is a very gerrymandered Democratic district from a decade old census. The race was uphill for Craig Huey from the start and Huey ran a very good campaign.

    The fact is that the Democrats and President Obama are less popular than in 2006 and 2008, but this will make little difference in California politics which is solidly blue Democratic. Republican voters are concentrated in certain areas of California and are overwhelmed by racially based demographic groups that traditionally vote Democratic no matter what. Now whether they turn out is another matter but the numbers are so great that winning is relatively easy for the Democrats.

    Any extrapolation of this race to the national mood is probably folly – no matter who is doing the spinning.

  • Craig Huey,  Janice Hahn

    CA-36: Special Election Day for Craig Huey and Janice Hahn – Will Huey Pul Off the Upset Victory?

    Los Angeles City Council Member Janice Hahn and GOP Congressional Nominee and businessman Craig Huey

    Hard to say but Craig Huey has exceeded all expectations in this race.

    Republicans are hopeful they can pick off a Los Angeles-based House seat long held by Democrats in Tuesday’s special election.

    The odds are against their candidate, businessman Craig Huey, but he’s surprised observers on both sides of the aisle by making the race closer than expected.

    Both Democratic and GOP strategists tell The Hill they believe he’s trailing Democratic candidate Janice Hahn by 5 points. And a new poll out Monday, conducted by the Dem-leaning Public Policy Polling for Daily Kos and SEIU, shows Hahn leading Huey by 8 points — a small margin in a heavily Democratic area.

    Huey has spent extensively to get to this point. He’s dropped about $1 million into the race, most of it his own money.

    Meanwhile, Hahn, a Los Angeles City Councilwoman, has failed to reunite the district’s liberal base after a divisive primary. She’s spent close to the same amount, but it’s money she’s raised — not loaned — her campaign.

    The district favors Democrats: President Obama won 64 percent of its votes in 2008, and the party has an advantage in voter registration.

    Also working against Huey is the Republican Party’s subpar record in special elections. The most recent example was Republican candidate Jane Corwin’s loss in May’s special election in New York. In an embarrassment for the party, the GOP candidate failed to win the Republican-leaning district.

    GOP operatives are downplaying Huey’s chances, trying to set expectations low so that a win would be seen as a shocking result.

    Regardless of the result tonight, the CA-36 Congressional District will be changing to a more GOP friendly one (more Republicans registered) in just a month when the California Citizen’s Redistricting Commission draws the new maps for the 2012 election cycle. So, this campaign between these two will continue regardless of tonight’s result.

    Also, according to the latest maps (always subject to change in August), there will be a new California Assembly District in the area where Craig Huey lives. This district will slant GOP. So, Huey could run for this office and most probably win easily with his high name identification in the district.

    But for today, it comes down to turnout which are notoriously low in special elections, particularly in the summer. If Huey can turn out HIS voters and some Democrats stay home, he wins.

    “We expect it to be close — it’s all going to come down to turnout; it’s going to be a very low-turnout election,” said Huey spokesman and adviser Dave Gilliard on Monday. “We’re excited about the possibility that we can pull this off tomorrow.”

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for July 4th on 12:02

    These are my links for July 4th from 12:02 to 16:26:

    • Flap’s Dentistry Blog: Heartland Dental Care Office Featured in Dental Economics Magazine – RE: Does the Heartland Dental Plan go like this?

      1. Come into Midwestern and Southern cities/towns and buy up existi…

    • 2011 All-Star Final Vote Ballot | MLB.com: Events – Help get Andre Ethier to the 2011 MLB #allstargame via @MLB
    • Another outrageous claim from the Hahn campaign for congress in the CA 36th CD – POLITICO quotes Janice Hahn's adviser John Shallman as saying that 70% of the Independent votes are Democratic (sic) primary voters (in the 36th California Congressional District runoff election).


      The funny thing is the Hahn campaign failed to release any poll backing up that facially outrageous claim. The mainstream press seems to have forgotten that in the last election Independent voters chose the Republican candidates over the Democrat candidates by 10 percentage points. How else do you think the Republicans won their greatest victory since the 1938 elections?

      The only poll we have from the Hahn campaign is from early last month which showed Ms. Hahn within 5% of her opponent, Tea Party Republican and Torrance businessman Craig Huey. The rumor is she leaked the poll to spur Democrats to forgive her for her dirty tricks campaign she ran against California Secretary of State Debra Bowen. If so, it didn't work.


      Count down to election day in 1 week. The only poll that matters is the one on July 12th.

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for May 27th on 12:00

    These are my links for May 27th from 12:00 to 13:32:

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for May 27th on 10:59

    These are my links for May 27th from 10:59 to 11:51:

    • CA-36: Liberals rally to Hahn in California special #CA36 – Liberals are circling the wagons around Los Angeles City Councilwoman Janice Hahn (D) as she heads into the House special-election runoff with Republican Craig Huey.

      Hahn and Huey, a wealthy businessman, finished first and second in the May 17 primary for former Rep. Jane Harman's (D-Calif.) seat.
      Hahn has since been backed by EMILY's List, Gov. Jerry Brown (D), House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) and other members of the California delegation. She's also been endorsed by anti-war activist Marcy Winograd, who placed fourth in primary.

      And on Friday, Hahn found backing in former Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean.

      During the primary, Dean backed Debra Bowen, the California secretary of State, who subsequently finished third. The former governor of Vermont said it was now time to move forward to make sure the seat stays in Democratic hands. 

      "With the primary election now behind us, Janice has emerged as our clear and critical choice for the 36th district," Dean said in a statement. "I urge all Democrats to join me in working to get her elected to Congress, and defeat the right wing extremists backing her opponent in this race."


      The Left will not take this district for granted.

    • New Food Pyramid Coming June 2, USDA Says – In an exclusive interview with WebMD, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) says the replacement for the Food Pyramid will be announced on June 2 — and that the new icon heralds a "monumental effort" to improve America's health.

      Why a new icon? The pyramid really does not capture the public's attention anymore, Robert C. Post, PhD, deputy director of the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, tells WebMD.

      "Consumers can look forward to a new, simple, easy-to-understand cue to prompt healthy choices," Post tells WebMD. "You will get this monumental effort across all agencies as well as the private sector. A partnership with the goal of improving the health of all Americans."

      "This icon really has the potential to trigger an 'aha!' moment, where people say, 'Hey, this is not that hard, I can do this,'" says Kathleen Zelman, RD, WebMD's Director of Nutrition, who is familiar with the USDA plan. "These 'aha!' moments are what make people finally change their behavior."

      The release of the icon marks the launch of a massive effort to promote the USDA/HHS dietary guidelines announced last January.


      More Big Government…..

    • Nonsurgical Device Effective for Adult Male Circumcision – A simple disposable device, known as PrePex, can be used to effectively circumcise male adults without anesthesia or a sterile environment and with no blood loss, and patients can return to work within hours, investigators announced here at the American Urological Association (AUA) 2011 Annual Scientific Meeting.

      The device can handle the increase in HIV-prevention male circumcision in high-risk resource-limited settings like sub-Saharan Africa.

      In all, "22 million of the 33.4 million HIV-infected individuals worldwide live in sub-Saharan Africa. Scale-up of adult male circumcision in this region is a challenge because the standard surgical procedure is relatively difficult to perform and requires a surgeon or highly skilled medical professional, along with expensive instruments," Muyenzi Leon Ngeruka, MD, a staff surgeon at Kanombe Hospital in Kigali, Rwanda, told Medscape Medical News. "In sub-Saharan Africa, there is a lack of medical infrastructure."

      He added that a "benefit of the device is that it can be deployed by minimally trained healthcare professionals in urban or rural environments without the need for a sterile hospital setting. We therefore believe that the new device can facilitate a rapid scale-up of adult male circumcision."

      Dr. Ngeruka presented results of a study of 50 healthy men, 18 to 35 years of age, who were recently circumcised using the device.


      Read it all.

      I guess if San Francisco and Santa Monica ban circumcision, then these folks can use this device.

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for May 26th on 10:32

    These are my links for May 26th from 10:32 to 11:41:

    • Gov. Christie announces N.J. pulling out of regional environmental initiative – In a blow to clean energy advocates throughout the Northeast, Gov. Chris Christie said this morning that the state will pull out of the region’s "gimmicky" cap-and-trade program by the end of the year.

      During a Statehouse news conference, Christie acknowledged the effects humans are having on climate change but said the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative was doing nothing to solve the problem.

      "This program is not effective in reducing greenhouse gases and is unlikely to be in the future," Christie told reporters. "The whole system is not working as it was intended to work. It’s a failure."

    • Immigration law: Supreme Court upholds law targeting employers – The Supreme Court on Thursday gave Arizona and other states more authority to take action against illegal immigrants and the companies that hire them, ruling that employers who knowingly hire illegal workers can lose their license to do business.

      The 5-3 decision upholds the Legal Arizona Workers Act of 2007 and its so-called business death penalty for employers who are caught repeatedly hiring illegal immigrants. The state law also requires employers to check the federal E-Verify system before hiring new workers, a provision that was also upheld Thursday.


      Read it all.

    • Craig Huey on Running for Office as a Libertarian Republican and Salvaging the American Dream #CA36 – Daily Bell: How do you view Obamacare? Are human beings born with a "right" to free healthcare? Can charitable, religious and spiritual organizations be sufficiently relied upon to provide a compassionate hand to fellow members of their local communities?

      Craig Huey: We have a God given right to life and liberty. To include healthcare as a "natural" right is a perversion of the concept. Charity and religious organizations have historically in America been there to help those in need. That is now being put in jeopardy by the government. I will fight to change that.

      Obamacare is one of my priorities for repeal. It's corrupt and flawed. It's dangerous to our health and freedom. It's an example of how bad the Washington's out-of-control centralized power is. Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is an unelected, appointed bureaucrat … the Secretary of Health and Human Services. Right now she is using her power to stifle free speech by forcing insurance companies to be silent about the harm being done. Her 1,968 grants of power will call the shots on which days seniors can access their care. These grants of power set Washington as a dictator on how to dispose drugs at long-term care facilities. Bureaucrats will also delineate how dentists and dental hygienists examine your teeth and much more.

      This is not in the Constitution. This is not a function of government. This is not what quality healthcare looks like. Our Constitution specifies that power must be balanced, restrained and never concentrated on one person. This concentration of power can only lead to great harm, abuse and unintended bad consequences. If you've ever been to a government agency, then you know what I mean.

      That's just one reason why I believe Obamacare will be found unconstitutional. Already 27 states fall in agreement saying it's unconstitutional. Just the forced individual mandates are completely contrary to a free society. But until the court does find it unconstitutional, I will be committed to defunding Obamacare. I will fight the tax increase. I will fight 6,000 new IRS agents. I will fight the bureaucratic control of doctors and patients.


      Read it all

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for May 23rd on 15:58

    These are my links for May 23rd from 15:58 to 16:38:

    • Two patients died after waiting in ambulance outside ‘full’ Oldham hospital unit – Two patients died after being left waiting in ambulances outside an over-stretched hospital.

      The patients, believed to have been in their 80s, couldn’t get into the Royal Oldham Hospital for seven and 20 minutes respectively.

      They were assessed by ambulance crews as ‘very sick’ and were both suspected of having suffered heart attacks.

      The A&E department was so busy that all but the most urgent cases were being sent to other hospitals at the time. All five resuscitation beds at Oldham were full.

      The two patients were assessed and treated by a casualty doctor and senior nurse in the ambulances.

      It is understood neither actually had suffered a heart attack by the time they were admitted – although both later died at the hospital. One died in the resuscitation unit the following day and the other three days after being admitted to a ward.

      A probe has been launched after ambulance chiefs reported the incident to regional health authority NHS North West.


      Read it all.

      Get ready for ObamaCare

    • CA-36: What Went Wrong in the L.A. Special Election? – Hahn is expected to win the July run-off, but we expect turnout to be even lower. Huey can easily self-fund with another $500,000, and labor will have to expend its scarce resources to crank its turnout effort and put Hahn over the top. As blogger Marta Evry pointed out, Hahn will win the special election in July – but re-districting could change the demographics and make the district more Republican in 2012. Her complete analysis is well worth reading in full, but I’ll just quote one line from it: “Janice Hahn’s strategic choices, coupled with Marcy Winograd’s ego, may have created a perfect storm in which a to bring a previously unknown Tea Party candidate to national prominence.”


      Read it all…..

      From the LEFT perspective…..

    • Janice Hahn Won The Battle In 2011. Could She Lose The War In 2012? – From what I've heard and read, CA-36 is probably going to lose everything north of LAX, and potentially gain back Palos Verdes. Palos Verdes, connected to an Orange County district by a block-wide strip in Long Beach and a narrow strip of San Pedro, is profoundly gerrymandered. Those Republicans have to go somewhere.

      If this happens, it would significantly cut into Democrat's voter registration advantage, and create a district that more closely resembles the one in which Janice Hahn previously ran for congress in 1998.

      Hahn lost that race, to Republican Steve Kuykendall, 47% to 49%.

      Janice Hahn got the opponent she wanted. But by helping to advance Huey into the runoff, Hahn has elevated him from an unknown evangelical advertising consultant to a national figure in the Tea Party movement. The media isn't ignoring Craig Huey anymore. He has two months to build up his name recognition and base of support. And when he loses in July, he can turn right around and start stumping for the June 2012 primary race in a district likely to be far more receptive to his message.


      Read it all.

      Craig Huey indeed could lose in July and still come out the winner.

    • Jon Huntsman Jr., potential GOP candidate hits California for fundraising swing : – Former U.S. Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman Jr.is heading to California this week — just in time to pump up his fundraising base as the 2012 GOP presidential race shapes up.

      The former Utah Governor, who's been described as the possible GOP candidate "Democrats fear most," hits San Francisco Tuesday, Los Angeles Wednesday and Orange County on Thursday of this week. The Palo Alto native will be having private meetings with California donors and supporters, sources say.


      Money will never be Huntsman's problem but his moderate position on the issues will be.

    • President 2012: Not the whole truth in Pawlenty claims – Truth" was Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty's buzzword Monday when he announced his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination. He said he will tell the truth about hard choices facing the nation while others — President Barack Obama notably among them — do not.
      A parsing of Pawlenty's opening-day statements shows they were not the whole truth.
      Here is a sampling of his claims Monday and how they compare with the facts.
      PAWLENTY: "The truth is, people getting paid by the taxpayers shouldn't get a better deal than the taxpayers themselves. That means freezing federal salaries, transitioning federal employee benefits, and downsizing the federal work force as it retires." — Campaign announcement.
      THE FACTS: A federal pay freeze is already in effect. Obama proposed and Congress approved a two-year freeze on the pay of federal employees, exempting the armed forces, Congress and federal courts.
      PAWLENTY: "ObamaCare is unconstitutional." — USA Today column.
      THE FACTS: Obama's health care overhaul might be unconstitutional in Pawlenty's opinion, but it is not in fact unless the Supreme Court says so. Lower court rulings have been split.
      PAWLENTY: "Barack Obama has consistently stood for higher taxes." — Campaign announcement.
      THE FACTS: Obama's record shows more tax cutting than tax raising. The stimulus plan early in his presidency cut taxes broadly for the middle class and business, and more recently he won a substantial cut in Social Security taxes for a year. He also campaigned in support of extending the Bush-era tax cuts for all except the wealthy, whose taxes he wanted to raise. In office, he accepted a deal from Republicans extending the tax cuts for all. As for tax increases, Obama won congressional approval to raise them on tobacco and tanning salons. The penalty for those who don't buy health insurance, once coverage is mandatory, is a form of taxation.
      PAWLENTY: "For decades before I was elected, governors tried and failed to get Minnesota out of the top 10 highest-taxed states in the country. I actually did it." — Campaign announcement.
      THE FACTS: Minnesota remains among the 10 worst states in its overall tax climate, according to the Tax Foundation. In its 2011 State Business Tax Climate Index, the anti-tax organization ranks Minnesota 43rd, making it the eighth worst state. The ranking slipped from 41st two years earlier. The index considers corporate, individual, sales, unemployment insurance and property taxes.


      Read them all.

      Tim Pawlenty will NOT be the GOP nominee.