US News

Senate Adopts Don't Ask Don't Tell as Their Position on DADT

For now...

It is sad that they don't even have enough of a spine to talk about this. Not rationally nor irrationally, as is their tendency these days, they would rather just muzzle any debates on the world that has long since passed them by.

"With the failed cloture vote to end the filibuster of the Defense Authorization bill -- which in essence killed a vote on repealing "don't ask, don't tell," Joe Lieberman has announced that he will introduce a free standing bill to repeal the policy"

Barbara Morill also says to "stay tuned" because it will be coming before the end of the sessions.

A Progressive News service

Re-Posted from Dailykos with permission from StrandedWind

I don't even recall who it was, but someone tweeted about the Knight Foundation News Challenge, and I favorited it for later inspection.

I finally got around to looking at it a few days before it ended and I was kicking myself - last year they gave grants between $75,000 and $400,000 for people who had ideas. Good ideas, mind you, but just ideas ... and we've actually got Progressive Congress News up and running.

So ... step over the fold and help me drag home a great big score for the Progressive community.

The Spawn of Judy Miller?

It only took a few paragraphs in to Salon's critique of the NY Times' handling of revelations - more specifically, the NY Times' exclusion of revelations - in wikileak's #cablegate  to begin to wonder about Obama's action, as well, and the meaning of it:

Guess Who Else Is A Lobbyist For Porno Scanners?

In case you think Body Scanners are going away anytime soon... It ain't just Michael Chertoff on the lobbyist gravy train for this:

Airport body-scanner manufacturers armed for K Street battle

Companies like L-3 Communications, the defense contractor, are providing several of the scanners under a nearly $165 million TSA contract won earlier this year, are well-prepared for the fight.

Linda Hall Daschle, a former administrator for the Federal Aviation Administration and wife of ex-Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-S.D.), is one of L-3’s best-connected lobbyists.

The president of LHD Associates, Daschle has earned $100,000 in lobbying fees so far this year working on “matters related to advanced imaging technology” — body scanners — among other air-travel issues, according to lobbying disclosure documents.

...snip...

Rapiscan attracted attention earlier this year when it was revealed that former Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, a vocal proponent of body scanners, had consulted for the company. Peter Kant, Rapsican’s executive vice president, said Chertoff was no longer working for the company.

The only time there is real bipartisanship is when there is a buck to be made...  And they will do anything to keep their money flowing.  More Below...

Early Saturday Morning Drive-by Posting: Million Dollar Patriotism. No, really!

Hat-tip Lordrag of DelphiForums.

So, not all of the rich elite are against letting the Bush tax cuts expire for the wealthiest of Americans:

__________

"For the fiscal health of our nation and the well-being of our fellow citizens, we ask that you allow tax cuts on incomes over $1,000,000 to expire at the end of this year as scheduled," their website states. "We make this request as loyal citizens who now or in the past earned an income of $1,000,000 per year or more."

__________

Source

That right there is million dollar patriotism, brought to you by your fellow concerned citizens out of concern for the economy and who have a good sense of what will help the economy the most.

Taxes. Specifically, taxing those who can most afford it.

Keith Olbermann's Special Comment on News and Objectivity

Sometimes, someone says what needs to be said -- there's more to the truth than the objective idealism of "fair and balanced" which Fox News has turned into a catch-phrase for "partisanship" and propaganda.

In the Special Comment delivered on 15 November 2010, Keith Olbermann talks about the News Media and it's abhorrent record.

Give it a listen.

Comments are open, and welcome.

Open Thread - I see pink underwear in Sheriff Joe Arpaio's future...

And brain bleach to remove that image in my future:

Arizona Sheriff used hidden database to misspend up to $80 million, officials claim

www.rawstory.com

A hidden computer database recently discovered in the course of a racial profiling investigation shows Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio misspent up to $80 million in funds intended for jail operations, according to Maricopa County supervisors and budget officials.

Anything, preferably non-brain bleach related, Open Thread worthy pass through your mind lately?

Open Thread - Digging in the Dirt

Digging Into polling numbers - From ctblogger at MLN, a little bit on Connecticut's version of The Drudge Report and the biased polls they paid for:

New York Times FiveThirtyEight's Nate Silver offers his take on Merriman River Group's congressional polling for that site that inflates it's stats.

Nate_Silver

...that's putting it mildly. Hopefully, in the future the statewide media will take future polling from CTCapitolReport with a grain of salt.

Dig in below the fold for more Open Thread dirt...

The real victory tonight: The Blue Dogs take a beating.

So far, it looks like nearly half the Blue Dog Dems have been kicked out of office. That’s a much higher percentage of Dems than the Progressive Caucus lost tonight. I think it speaks loudly to why the Dems got their butts kicked today. This wasn’t Americans turning to the Republicans, which polls show Americans hate worse than Dems. This was Americans turning away from the Blue Dogs. The ones who sold us out to the corporatists.

Heathens Hold the Line as Californians Reject Corporate Takeover

Michael Collins

The corporate takeover of California is on hold according to the latest polls out of the nation’s largest state. Just nine days before the election, the Los Angeles Times and University of Southern California poll shows a nearly impossible uphill battle for the big business ticket of former eBay CEO Meg Whitman and former HP CEO Carly Fiorina.

Among likely voters in the governor’s race, Brown leads Whitman 50% to 38%. In the race for United States Senator, two term Senator Barbara Boxer maintained an 8% lead. The leads by Democrats come from a brand new constituency, those who "never" go to church. More on that later.

Phishing, Taxes, The US Treasury and You

It's that time of the year, folks -- a swarm of emails have been coming out from spoofed addresses, claiming to be from the customer service section of Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (eftps.gov).

NOTE: The IRS never sends emails to taxpayers. Pass that tidbit on, and help take a bite out of cybercrime...

It starts off with the following:

__________
From: EFTPS Tax Payment [mailto:customers@eftps.gov]
Sent: today, this month, real recent time
To: yourbusinessname@yourbusinessurl.com
Subject: Your Federal Tax Payment has been rejected. Report ID: xxxxxxxx (some numbers, sometimes sequential if from the same spammer/phisher/cyber-criminal/needle-dicked bugfvcker)

Your Federal Tax Payment ID: 012345678 has been rejected.

Return Reason Code R21 - The identification number used in the Company Identification Field is not valid.

Please, check the information and refer to Code R21 to get details about your company payment in transaction contacts section: http://eftps.gov/R21

In other way forward information to your accountant adviser.

EFTPS: The Electronic Federal Tax Payment System
PLEASE NOTE: Your tax payment is due regardless of EFTPS online
availability. In case of an emergency, you can always make your tax payment by calling the EFTPS.
__________

What changes, slightly, is the subject (sometimes the message has "URGENT" at the start of the subject, sometimes not), the content (sometimes the line "In other way forward information to your accountant adviser" is present, sometimes not). The URL "eftps.gov/R21" is not the actual URL that the message redirects you to -- that's just the URL label. The actual URL differs, usually directing people to a server in Russia through a variant of the domain name "eftpsxxxxx.com" where the "xxxx" is a series of numbers. A traceroute on the various URLs comes back with different domain hosts / admin information, but the email headers from any message you receive usually include an ip address (and sometimes a source node) for where the message may actually be from -- or at least one of the potential zombie machines it was sent from.

Should you receive any such emails (I've received about 12 so far over the past few days), there's a quick and easy way to report them to the IRS (see below). In general, any time you receive a suspicious email claiming to be from the Treasury or US government, you can go to the US Treasury's website for contact information about how to report the phishing attempt, or -- if you've been a victim of a cybercrime, particularly if you've lost money or property -- you can go straight to the IC3 site and file a complaint (or 2, or 3 -- or 12 -- as the case may be).

For this particular email scam and for cases specifically involving the IRS and tax scams, go to the IRS page for more information. The IRS is already aware of this particular scam, but you should still report it and provide the details of the email source to help their cybercrime investigators track the perpetrators. Usually, a great and simple method to do this as well as report these types of fraud involves the following:

  1. View and copy the full header information of the email,
  2. Forward the email message to phishing@irs.gov, with a copy of the full header information pasted within

Easy-peasy.

Whatever you do, do not click on the links of any suspicious emails, even those purporting to be from the IRS or US Government, unless you can be sure that the link goes to where it says it is going.

More information is available about this at the IRS site on fraud/phishing/abuse (same IRS link as provided a few sentences ago).

Be careful out there, and remain ever-vigilant for those cyber-criminals who'll try to steal you blind almost as fast as the Bush/Cheney Administration and their Republican Congressional majority gutted the national treasury and destabilized our entire economy and infrastructure.

Why is the American social safety net so weak?

This piece is a crossposted excerpt from a slightly larger piece originally posted on DailyKos. Our thanks to the writer, Democrats Ramshield, for the crosspost. The opening has been slightly edited for clarity, as the original lead-in material is not included within this crosspost. Those are the only alterations. -- GH

How does the US social safety net protect working families?

Did you know that virtually speaking the United States is the only major industrialized nation in the world that doesn't offer job protected paid maternity leave by right of law? To which this diary offers a number of quotes below. In reviewing those quotes please ask yourself the question, what type of family values is Yankee capitalism promulgating for the working class?

Paternity Leave / international comparisons

Did you know that 157 countries offer paid maternity leave?

Check out Wikipedia: "Parental Leave": there's a shocking chart which is an embarassment to the United States

Source: http://comet.lehman.cuny.edu/...

Let's take a look at how the French maternity leave policies work to support families as an earned benefit provided to working people. In doing so please consider the quote below.

Maternity Leave in France

CNN: Bindi Dupouy, an Australian living in Paris, and her French husband, just had their first child, a son born in the country.
Dupouy, a 28-year-old lawyer, got almost five months paid maternity leave from her company for the birth. She can take another seven months off beyond that -- a year total -- unpaid, if she wants, with her job guaranteed under French law.

Source: http://articles.cnn.com/...

Would you please consider telling your friends, family about how our British cousins are provided with extensive maternity benefits which maybe shared by hetero-sexual couples, as well as same-sex couples and single parent families? Isn't it time that we in the U.S. adopted these types of progressive family friendly policies?

Now we're talking about real family values not just lip service.

 

Their pay is only 15 Grand per week. How will they get by?

We can sit back and worry about how these poor people will get by in this economy (the disaster economy that they created) or we can work from the pragmatic point of view of reality and tell them to suck it up and tighten their own damned belts instead of trying to squeeze the middle class and the poor even more than they already have to pay for their own disasters:

Rachel Maddow and Jane Mayer, Astroturfing the Kochtopus

Continuing information that adds to, and overlaps, the recent piece by DeltaDoc, here's a clip of Rachel Maddow's interview with Jane Mayer, author of Covert Operations: The billionaire brothers who are waging a war against Obama:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

In case you missed the initial list of items to start boycotting with a vengeance, here it is again:

  1. Brawny paper towels
  2. Dixie Cups
  3. Stainmaster Carpet
  4. Lycra
  5. Georgia Pacific (Plywood, lumber...and paper?)

More info later -- let's take a chunk out of Koch's bottom line, and teach these teaparty-spawning, traitorous instigators of sedition a lesson in patriotism and economics. One that makes irresponsible, selfish, unregulated capitalism pay far less for such scurrilous activity.

Corporate activism, corporate sedition and treason: those are the most damaging items that are affecting and destroying our nation today. The Kochtopus is the funding spigot that directed monies to and through think tanks and sold the teabagger origins as a "grass roots" movement, instead of the corporate-spawned tool that the movement really is.

Astroturfing is one of the primary strategies of the Kochtopus; it's time to start targeting and cutting off the many arms, trimming the beast back to a more manageable size -- or destroying it, before its infection spreads any further.