Earmarks & John McCain’s Top 10…Excerpt

This morning Senator John McCain is twittering through his top 10 list of earmarks. At publishing he’d only gotten #10 through #7 tweeted. Here’s some facts about his Top Ten that apparently his staff didn’t bother to vet out. #10: 1.7M for honey bee factory in Texas. Two things: In case the Senator doesn’t know it the ag business is having a real problem with bee pollination as there’s been an unexplained drop in bee population. If there’s a new plant being built they, presumably, will have to either help other breed more bee’s to produce more honey or do it themselves. Dateline: Science Daily Feb, 2008 using materials in part provided by the US Dept of Agriculture: In response … Continue reading

Is Healthcare for All On It’s Way?

Is healthcare for all finally on it’s way here in America? I certainly hope so. From Paul Krugman who seems to think the prospects look good: Since the last two posts were very down on the administration, let me say that the initial leaks on health care are encouraging. The supposed commitment of $634 billion to health care reform isn’t quite enough to pay for the subsidies that are an essential part of a universal-care system, but it’s not ridiculously short, either. It’s beginning to look as if Obama’s really going to go through with this — and if he gets us to universality, his legacy will be secure. The Obama administration plans to set up a “reserve fund,” that is President … Continue reading

President Obama’s Speech to Congress and the Nation

Did you feel good watching President Obama address Congress and the nation last night? I certainly did. Obama exuded confidence last night as spoke to Congress and the reviews all seem to echo the same theme, that Obama renewed the “audacity to hope” with his speech. In post speech polls as well, Obama received high marks on his speech which outlined an “ambitious agenda for ‘lasting prosperity’.” In contrast to President Obama’s well received speech last night, Lousiana Governor Bobby Jindal’s Republican response was a complete and utter flop. Even Fox News panned it. The consensus of the night on Jindal’s rather bizarre performance, Jindal is “America’s Slumdog Millionaire.”

Out Of Iraq in 18 Months

President Barack Obama will take to the podium in a little over an hour to deliver his first State of the Union Address. The big pre-SOTU story tonight is this one from AP News: “Officials: Most troops out of Iraq in 18 months“: AP reports that the Obama administrations’s withdrawal plan, which should be released early this week, “calls for leaving a large contingent of troops behind, between 30,000 and 50,000 troops, to advise and train Iraqi security forces and to protect U.S. interests.” The contingent remaining will include intelligence and surveillance specialists and their equipment, including unmanned aircraft, according to two administration officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because the plan has not been made public. The complete withdrawal of … Continue reading

The GOP vs. Obama (and the American People)

From WaPo, more good poll numbers for Obama: As President Obama prepares to address a joint session of Congress [tonight], he receives strong grades for his first full month in office, as large majorities of Americans support his $787 billion economic stimulus package and the recently unveiled $75 billion plan for stemming mortgage foreclosures, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. Nearly seven in 10 believe Obama is delivering on his pledge to bring needed change to Washington, the poll found, and about eight in 10 say he is meeting or exceeding their expectations. At the same time, however, the bipartisan support he enjoyed as he prepared to take office has eroded substantially. And why has it eroded? Because … Continue reading

Equal Rights for Everyone

Jumping back in while I am waiting for my RAID drive to finish rebuilding on my computer. As I said below, due to the winter storm up here in Maine, I missed the last half of the Oscar’s last night. I was thrilled to see that Sean Penn had won for Best Actor for his strong performance as Harvey Milk in “Milk.” I finally had the opportunity to watch Penn’s acceptance speech. Here it is incase you missed it: In his speech last night Penn admonished the anti-gay, Prop 8 supporters who were outside of the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood protesting last night and called for equal rights for all. Even more moving than Sean Penn’s speech last night was the … Continue reading

On and Off

It’s still snowing and blowing up here in the Downeast. I’ve attempted to start posting on what’s happening in the political realm today, but each time I do our power goes out again. We’ve had a load of heavy snow up here coupled with very strong winds which is wreaking havoc with power lines — there’s an estimated 140,000 people without power here in Maine as of this morning. I’ll be back on when the storm is over or it appears the power outages have stabilized.