Flap’s Links and Comments for April 7th on 17:48

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Pinboard Links

These are my links for April 7th from 17:48 to 17:52:

  • Prosser Vs. Kloppenberg – Wild One in Waukesha, Wisconsin – At a press conference just moments ago, Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus explained how “human error” caused nearly 15,000 votes from the city of Brookfield to be excluded from early county tabulations.

    A clearly nervous Nickolaus said that she first discovered that data for Brookfield was missing when she uploaded a database of county votes  to a state system, and noticed that all rows and columns for the city contained zeros. On Wednesday, the county’s bipartisan canvassing board began reviewing those unofficial results — which didn’t contain the Brookfield numbers — with official tape totals from voting machines throughout the county. They found a discrepancy.

    “I discovered that the data that was sent to me from the city of Brookfield was not transferred to the final report that was given to the media on Tuesday night,” Nickolaus said. Heavily red Brookfield, she said, had cast 10,859 for Prosser and 3,456 for Kloppenberg, netting the incumbent over 7,000 votes and a lead that could put him beyond the legal trigger for a mandatory recount.

    Nickolaus assured reporters repeatedly that “This is not a a case of extra votes or extra ballots being found.” The canvassing process is a standard part of election results certification in the state, and its purpose is to catch errors just like this one.

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    Wow, what a fortuitious error.

  • House passes funding bill that could get Senate majority – President Obama in the Box – The House of Representatives did its job, passing a funding bill to keep the government open a week and cover the Defense Department for the balance of the FY 2011. A senior Senate source told me flatly, “I am confident all members of the caucus would support House bill.” It is inconceivable to me that a few Democrats wouldn’t go along. But Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid is likely to refuse to bring it to the floor. Why? He won’t say. Well, because the president said he’d veto it. Why? He won’t say. The bill is precisely the “clean bill” he wanted.

    Obama has backed himself, and now Reid, into a corner. Are the Senate Democrats and the White House going to shut down the government for no good reason? Perhaps. What we see here is a transparent and slightly pathetic attempt by the president to take charge. Maybe he should have been paying attention for all of 2011 when the Democratic-controlled Congress didn’t do its job. Maybe he should have gotten into the negotiations sooner. But for now we’ll wait and see.

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    The Senate is working on it – so wait and see.

Flap’s Links and Comments for March 28th on 14:08

Posted Posted in Pinboard Links

These are my links for March 28th from 14:08 to 16:10:

  • Harry Reid urges GOP to ditch Tea Party – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Monday urged Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) to ditch members of the Tea Party and cut a deal with Democrats to avert a government shutdown.

    Reid insisted it is those GOP internal divisions that are threatening to shut down the government after April 8, in less than two weeks.

    “For the sake of our economy, it’s time for mainstream Republicans to stand up to the Tea Party and rejoin Democrats at the table to negotiate a responsible solution that cuts spending while protecting jobs," he said.

    Last week Reid put $7.5 billion in discretionary cuts and $3.5 billion in mandatory savings on the table as a counteroffer to the $51 billion in additional cuts the GOP is seeking.

    This week Democrats are mulling raising the offer to $20 billion. But Democratic aides insist it is the divided GOP that must make the next move and come back to the negotiating table, not Democrats who must continue to negotiate with themselves and up their offer.

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    Harry Reid is going senile.

    Cut the damn budet, Dingy Harry – end of story

  • Is Media Matters breaking the law in its ‘war’ on Fox News? – Media Matters, the George Soros-backed legion of liberal agit-prop shock troops based in the nation's capital, has declared war on Fox News, and in the process quite possibly stepped across the line of legality.

    David Brock, MM's founder, was quoted Saturday by Politico promising that his organization is mounting "guerrila warfare and sabotage" against Fox News, which he said "is not a news organization. It is the de facto leader of the GOP, and it is long past time that it is treated as such by the media, elected officials and the public.”

    To that end, Brock told Politico that MM will “focus on [News Corp. CEO Rupert] Murdoch and trying to disrupt his commercial interests …" Murdoch is the founder of Fox News and a media titan with newspaper, broadcast, Internet and other media countries around the world.

    There is nothing in the Politico article to suggest that Brock, who was paid just under $300,000 in 2009, according to the group's most recently available tax return, plans to ask the IRS to change his organization's tax status as a 501(C)(3) tax-exempt educational foundation.

    Being a C3 puts MM in the non-profit, non-commercial sector, and it also bars the organzation from participating in partisan political activity. This new, more aggressive stance, however, appears to run directly counter to the government's requirements for maintaining a C3 tax status.

    Since Brock classifies Fox News as the "leader" of the Republican Party, by his own description he is involving his organization in a partisan battle. High-priced K Street lawyers can probably find a federal judge or a sympathetic IRS bureaucrat willing to either look the other way or accept some sort of MM rationale such as that it is merely providing educational information about a partisan group.

    But in the IRS application for 501(C)(3) tax-exempt educational foundation status, Section VIII, Question I asks the applicant: "Do you support or oppose candidates in political campaigns in any way?" (Emphasis added).

    Under Brock's definition of Fox News, it appears he is setting MM on a course of actively opposing all Republican candidates. Brandon Kiser at The Right Sphere blog argues that this new statement of MM's mission means it must change its tax status.

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    Read it all.

    I don't think Media Matters is to impressed with the media exposure of their "WAR on Fox News." Probably neither are Rupert Murdoch's numerous law firms that are more than likely preparing lawsuits.

  • The battle to define Charles and David Koch – The LEFT Exposed – When it comes to the suddenly infamous Koch brothers, there’s one thing the conservative Weekly Standard and liberal filmmaker Robert Greenwald can agree on: The Kochs, Charles and David, have been a boon to the American political left.

    “For progressives confused at the heated opposition to their do-gooder agenda, the Kochs became convenient scapegoats,” asserts the Weekly Standard’s Matthew Continetti this week in a long cover story defending the Kochs. Liberals in the media have “ascribed every bad thing under the sun to the brothers and their checkbooks. Pollution, the Tea Party, global warming denial—the Kochs were responsible,” Continetti writes, asserting that in recent months “whenever you turned on MSNBC or clicked on the Huffington Post you’d see the Kochs described in terms more applicable to Lex Luthor and General Zod.”

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    Read it all.

    Fancy that: A George Soros funded "War" against the Koch Brothers = some grassroots outrage…. RIGHT

Flap’s Links and Comments for March 24th on 14:28

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Pinboard Links

These are my links for March 24th from 14:28 to 14:31:

  • Democrats Call Koch Industries ‘Extreme,’ but Justify Taking Their Money – Ben Smith reported this morning that the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee sent out a fundraising email, signed by Harry Reid, that tries to ride the anti-Koch bandwagon. Here's the relevant part of the email:

    Senate Democrats are fighting back each and every day. But with only a slim four-seat majority, we have no margin for error. If Republicans can knock just a few bricks free from our firewall, they’ll force through their extreme agenda faster than you can say “Koch brothers.” With the GOP on the attack and with 23 Democratic-held seats to defend, we have no time to spare. We must act now to keep our majority standing strong. I need your help!

    The DSCC must raise $150,371 by our March 31 FEC deadline to keep the Republicans at bay.

    Smith notes the DSCC got about $30,000 from the Koch family in the last election cycle. He also reported back in September that a limited number of Democratic candidates have also received Koch money, including sitting senators Ben Nelson of Nebraska, Mark Pryor of Arkansas, and Mary Landrieu of Louisiana. New York's Charles Schumer, the third-ranking Democrat in the Senate, also received $1,000 from Koch Industries in the last election.

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    How do you spell HYPOCRITE?

  • Madison Wisconsin teachers given until April 15 to rescind fake doctors’ notes – Madison teachers who missed school last month to attend protests and turned in fraudulent doctor's notes have been given until April 15 to rescind those notes, officials said Thursday.
    The district received more than 1,000 notes from teachers, human resources director Bob Nadler said. A couple hundred of those were ruled fraudulent because they appeared to be written by doctors at the Capitol protests against Gov. Scott Walker's proposal to limit collective bargaining.
    Teachers who don't rescind fraudulent notes could receive a disciplinary letter of suspension, the most serious form of discipline aside from termination, Nadler said. The suspension would be considered already served — the time missed during the protests.
    "We didn't want to give anybody more time off," Nadler said. "They can't afford it. We can't afford to have them gone any more. I don't think kids need their teacher gone another two days."
    Teachers who rescind their note would receive a more minor "letter of expectation" and be docked pay at the end of the school year for the four missed days.
    Nadler said the majority of notes came from doctor's offices and the district doesn't plan on calling each one to determine if the excuse was legitimate.

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    Slap on the wrist and if they are honest get docked pay.

    what a system! NOT