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The Politics of Disaster Capitalism, Extreme Edition

In Sunday's Abbreviated Pundit Round-up, Daily Kos editor and front-page contributor Mark Sumner notes via an excerpt from Byron Williams that the problem with our deficit isn't what pundits and politicians are making it out to be - and nobody appears to be listening:

Byron Williams says President Obama isn't standing his ground.

According to the Congressional Budget Office, the bipartisan federal agency that provides economic data to Congress, more than half the current deficit is attributed to the tax cuts during the presidency of George W. Bush and the two wars that were financed on borrowed dollars during the same time period.

It's not health care legislation, it's not TARP, nor is it the stimulus package -- the troika with which most seem obsessed -- it's the tax cuts and wars that many who sit at the table negotiating with the president supported, but have irresponsibly drawn a line in the sand in opposition to any revenue increases.

Republicans sank the economy and ran up the debt, now they're looking to capitalize from their own destruction. Don't let them.

If you're familiar with the title and premise of Naomi Klein's The Shock Doctrine, then you're familiar with how extreme - and dangerous - the current antics of conservatives and the Republican Party in general are to the well-being of our nation.

Contact your local news media (unless, of course, you're stuck with Fox) and demand that they start pointing out the realities behind the current fiscal issues. Recommend that they read Byron's column. Demand that they stop catering to the dialog that the politicians are refusing to correct. We need EVERYONE who can to work with us to force the media and the politicians (the ones who are still listening) to start driving the debate on getting actual issues addressed, instead of permitting the ongoing smoke-and-mirrors that characterizes what has become the typical game of "kabuki theater in a Potemkin village" that our Congress has engaged in.

Our nation, and our people, can't take much more of this idiocy.

 

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Via weatherdude: "High Risk" Major Tornado Outbreak Expected -- PDS Tornado Watch for Dallas/OKC

Now in liveblog mode over on Daily Kos, folks in Oklahoma, Texas and Kansas are being warned of the potential for a major tornado outbreak:

The Storm Prediction Center has issued a rare high risk area across Oklahoma and Kansas for a major tornado outbreak this afternoon. The outbreak is expected to be centered across Oklahoma, extreme northern Texas, and southern Kansas, with a lower (but still elevated) risk of a major tornado outbreak across northwestern Arkansas, northern Texas (including Dallas/Ft. Worth), most of the rest of Kansas, and western Missouri this afternoon.

A PDS (Particularly Dangerous Situation) tornado watch has been issued for parts of Texas and Oklahoma for the threat of very large, long track, destructive tornadoes, hail larger than baseballs, and destructive wind gusts over 70 MPH.

For liveblog updates, keep checking back over on the Daily Kos diary by weatherdude, here.

If you're located in the affected area, please be safe.

 

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In Memoriam: Passed Pets

Crossposted from Daily Kos.

A few days ago, a good friend told me of the passing of an old friend. The two of them had been together for 21 years. It saddened me, as I understood how close they'd been and what they'd gone through together, but we both agreed that our old friend was in a better place.

So far, most people reading the above who hadn't paid attention to the title might think that this is solely about people - but, as hinted in the title, it's not: it's about people and their pets, the faithful companions who stand by us through thick and thin.

I'll refer to my friend here as "BugBear" and to her faithful, now-passed-on companion by her name: Spanky, which was short for Spank a Funk a Puss. There are two other furry companions I'll make reference of here: Smoky, who passed on a decade or so ago, and Missy, who passed on a few years back. For those who have lost a special companion, use the comments to honor and remember your furry friend and companion.

...and now, on to the memorial and to the memories.

 

Saturday Afternoon Open Thread: ePluribus Meta, DK4 Formatting Tips and Thou Edition

Earlier today, ePluribus Media posted a diary over on Daily Kos containing a few formatting tips and tricks for the new DK4 format. The diary is called The Elements of Style: Tips, Tricks and Regrouping News. The first part of the title comes from the well-known The Elements of Style - perhaps a bit presumptuous, but at the time it seemed appropriate.

For those who are waiting and watching as ePluribus Media rebuilds and rejuvenates, we're interested in any feedback you've got regarding our past, present and future: what would you like to see, what would you like to see more of, and what didn't work for you?

We'll keep the community posted on developments as we move forward, and we'll be starting a group (as yet undefined) over on Daily Kos as part of reconstituting our core of citizen journalist researchers, writers and editors.

We hope to see you in the comments below, and over at our dK4 Group too. Most of all, we hope to hear from you.

For now, though, just remember: This is an Open Thread.

Health Care Series: This will make you weep

Promoted. Originally posted 2009-06-25 21:03:17 -0400. -- GH

Come over here for a moment. I’m going to lift the curtain on a private world, a world I hope you’ll never have cause to inhabit. Take a glance at this world and the people in it. This is the world of dialysis patients and their families.

What you are about to read is not at all uncommon in the dialysis community. We (dialysis patients) often give each other this sort of advice. I am partly prepared, when my own time comes, to divorce the one I love and go on Medicaid myself if I have to. It may be the only way I can get health care once I max out our employer insurance, the one with the $2 million cap.

The names I use here are real. The people are real. The words are their own, appeared on a dialysis patient email list, and are quoted with permission. Their zip codes, also used with permission, are real. Their stories will make you rage, and break your heart.

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