Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Party Of Zero

THE GLOSSY PAMPHLET: Last week, reporters excitedly gathered for a GOP press conference where House leaders said they would announce their alternative to Obama's budget. The proposal that GOP leaders presented, however, was a huge disappointment; basically, it was nothing more than a "brochure." Annoyed at being summoned for this non-event, reporters quizzed Boehner on specifics of the plan: "Are you going to have any further details on this today?" "What about some numbers? What about the out-year deficit? What about balancing the budget?" Reporting on MSNBC, host Contessa Brewer exclaimed, "Give me some substance!" The GOP "budget," in fact, contains almost no numbers -- except where they criticize the Obama administration's figures. The few ideas their plan does have include undoing the economic recovery package (which would be hard to do since some of the money is already out the door), and lowering the 35 percent, 33 percent, and 28 percent income tax brackets to 25 percent (regressive cuts that would gut government revenue). According to a Citizens for Tax Justice analysis, more than a quarter of all taxpayers -- mostly low-income families -- would pay more in taxes under this plan than they would under Obama's. On the other hand, "the richest one percent of taxpayers would pay $100,000 less, on average, under the House GOP plan." Additionally, although Republicans claim to be so concerned about the rising deficit, their income tax proposals "would cost over $300 billion more than the Obama income tax cuts in 2011 alone." "The party of 'no' has become the party of no new ideas," quipped White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs in response to the GOP proposal.

TAX WINDFALL FOR CORPORATE EXECUTIVES: According to the Republican leadership, the reason that lawmakers didn't release numbers last week is because they intend to do so this week. "The numbers will come next week with a multi-hundred page piece of legislation" that Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) is currently drafting, Boehner's office told First Read. Ryan's bill will still likely be short on new, deficit-cutting ideas though. As the Wonk Room's Pat Garofalo has noted, his plan "consists almost entirely of massive tax cuts for corporations and the rich," including lowering the top marginal tax rate to 25 percent, lowering the corporate tax rate to 25 percent, and completely eliminating the capital gains tax. Not only are these tax cuts regressive, but they will result in significant lost government revenue. According to a Center for American Progress Action Fund analysis, Ryan's plan gives the average CEO a $1.5 million tax break, while doing nothing for minimum wage workers.

THE RECONCILIATION HYPOCRISY: Republicans are also standing firm against allowing Obama to use the reconciliation process to pass key parts of his budget, such as health care and energy reform. This 25-year-old procedure "allows for the passage of a budget by a simple majority vote rather than the usual 60 votes needed to prevent a filibuster." Republican senators have said that they are prepared to go "nuclear" -- essentially shutting down the Senate through the use of parliamentary maneuvers -- if budget reconciliation is pursued. Sen. Judd Gregg (R-NH) compared reconciliation to "an act of violence" against the GOP. However, Republicans employed the same procedure to pass major Bush agenda items, including the 2001 and 2003 Bush tax cuts, the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, and the Tax Increase Prevention and Reconciliation Act of 2005. In fact, in 2005, Gregg defended using the reconciliation procedure, arguing, "The president asked for it, and we're trying to do what the president asked for."

Ron Mills's Facebook profile

Monday, March 30, 2009

New Show

It will stream live on ABCNews.com's home page, and on the Politics page -- or if you want a direct link to the Webcast, it's HERE

The idea behind it: In the same way The Note is political breakfast, we hope to fill you in on what you need to know to make smart conversation over a political lunch.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Twitter Goes Mainstream Media; Does That Signal Its Demise?

Twitter has finally hit the mainstream media. Quite honestly, it has gotten so much press lately you would think this social networking site only just emerged on the scene. Yet it's been around for a few years now, so can we really call it "Twittermania" simply because the mainstream press has finally taken notice? The great thing about being an early adopter is being able to feel like you are in this secret, underground society where you know something most people don't. You know the advantages and disadvantages of being a part of this exclusive group, and you even try to lure people over little by little simply because you understand the value. But you also know that once enough people are on board, it's growth is like a high speed train careening out of control...until it hits a brick wall. Will Twitter become the next MySpace hitting the height of popularity only to then meet a turning point allowing a competitor to emerge and steal the spotlight? Or has the exposure Twitter is now receiving THAT turning point which determines how we will evolve the way we interact and communicate in the future?

I make the comparison to MySpace because for some time MySpace, as we know, was insanely popular. It still is, but that popularity is being userped by it's once underdog competitor, Facebook. At some point MySpace had expansive growth even despite tons of bad press due to spammers and being known as the hot spot for child predators. MySpace had a difficult time getting a handle on this and while they focused on changing it, it gave Facebook the opportunity to step in...again as a place that was a one-time "secret" of the early adopters. MySpace's continuous press coverage flooded the site with new users yet at the same time plateauing its popularity. So I have to wonder if something we all have pushed so hard for, the mass adoption of Twitter, will really be the turning point for its demise.

Whether it is or it isn't, this really could signify something much bigger. Twitter going mainstream WILL change the way society communicates. It will change the way businesses interact with its customers. It will change the way we all network as a whole. So while Twitter's popularity may come and go, I think it's rise to stardom will push the evolution of communications and human interaction as we know it--starting now.

What do you think?

Follow Me @RainbowUSA

posted @ http://www.piercemattie.com/

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Obama for America A New Foundation for Growth — Call Your Representatives

Veterans of the BarackObama.com will surely recognize the big red button at the bottom of this post: Make Calls. This time however, we're not asking you to call voters -- we're asking you to call your representatives in Congress. We need you to let them know that you support the commitment that President Obama made to health care, education and renewable energy in his recent budget outline, and we need you to ask them to support the President's plan as well.

Here's a sample script that you can use for your calls:

Hello, my name is __________ and I'm calling you from __________ (city or town).

I'm calling today because we are in the grips of the worst economic crisis in generations — and President Obama needs the support of every member of Congress to create jobs, fix our economy and rebuild and renew America.

The President has proposed a budget that is honest, responsible and invests in the priorities we need to get our economy moving again and create jobs now and in the future, including:

  • Renewable energy to reduce our dependence on foreign sources of oil
  • Making Health Care more affordable for every American by cutting costs
  • Improving education so our children are prepared for the jobs of the 21st Century

Can I count on Rep./Sen. _________ to support the President's plan?

Once you've finished, be sure to record the results of your calls. And feel free to also let everyone know how your calls went in the comments below. . .

Send others to http://Area-nine.org

Ron Mills's Facebook profile

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Beginning today, the White House will harness every part of the Democratic Party’s machinery

Beginning today, the White House will harness every part of the Democratic Party's machinery to defend President Obama's budget and portray Republicans as reflexively political, according to party strategists.

A participant in the planning meetings described the push as a successor to Democrats' message that Rush Limbaugh is the Republican Party leader. "We have exhausted the use of Rush as an attention-getter," the official said.

David Plouffe, manager of Obama's presidential race, helped design the strategy, which includes the most extensive activation since November of the campaign's grassroots network. The database—which includes information for at least 10 million donors, supporters and volunteers—will now be used as a unique tool for governing, with former canvassers now being enlisted to mobilize support for the president's legislative agenda.

Others involved in the planning included White House senior adviser David Axelrod; the DNC chairman, Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine; and DNC Executive Director Jennifer O'Malley Dillon.

The plan follows the private complaints of some Democrats that Obama let the GOP get the better of him during the debate over pork in the budget bill he just signed, and growing concerns among some Democrats that charges of big spending could stick to the president.

Starting this week, President Obama will be "engaging directly with Congress more, and speaking more forcefully on behalf of his budget," a top adviser said.

On Sunday morning, three top White House officials will appear on network interview shows to describe brighter days ahead for the nation's economy, and make the case that the budget is an important part of the president's overall recovery plan.

And officials throughout the party plan to hammer the idea that Republicans are just saying "no" to the president's budget plans without offering their own alternative.

House Republicans, who released an alternative to the stimulus bill, say they'll issue their own budget proposal in the next few weeks. House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) said in January in his opening remarks to this legislative session: "During the 111th Congress, Republicans will strive not to be the party of 'opposition,' but the party of better solutions."

The Obama grassroots network—now known as Organizing for America, a project of the Democratic National Committee—has launched an e-mail pledge drive on MyBarackObama.com in which supporters sign their e-mail address to the statement: "I support President Obama's bold approach for renewing America's economy."

The pledge drive was announced with a video called "Ready for the Fight." Plouffe e-mailed supporters over the weekend with a challenge labeled "The next few weeks": "In the next few weeks we'll be asking you to do some of the same things we asked of you during the campaign—talking directly to people in your communities about the President's ideas for long-term prosperity."

This is not an easy message war for Democrats. Obama's budget calls for the largest deficit in U.S. history and a doubling of the national debt to $23 trillion in 2019. That is a big, juicy target for the GOP, which plans to hit this theme relentlessly all spring.

Republicans were successful in making earmarks, which accounted for only a sliver of total spending, the centerpiece of debate over the omnibus spending bill. The GOP sees sky-high deficits as similarly easy to explain to the public.

So the Democratic allies—the administration, congressional leaders, outside groups and the DNC—are uniting for the new push.

READ MORE..............

PS This was part of the Training on Saturday for precinct workers

Part 1

Part 2


Sign The Pledge

To Enter Data

Ron Mills

Friday, March 13, 2009

Jim Cramer v Jon Stewart

Listen: Jim Cramer v Jon Stewart

No one knew exactly what to expect when CNBC host Jim Cramer appeared on The Daily Show last night--except that it wouldn't be pretty--but Cramer's fumbling answers made it less brawl, more mercy killing.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Jon Stewart V. Jim Cramer

Stay tuned for Thursday night, when Cramer is set to appear on "The Daily Show."

Watch the whole epic smackdown below.

Related: Jon Stewart Rips Into Jim Cramer Again (VIDEO)

Related: Jim Cramer Defends Himself On Today Show (VIDEO)

Related: CNBC Jon Stewart Response: "Bizarrely Obsessed" With Santelli

Related: Jon Stewart Trashes CNBC Again -- On Letterman (VIDEO)

Related: Jon Stewart Eviscerates CNBC, Santelli On Daily Show (VIDEO)

Monday, March 09, 2009


Politico 44 President's Calendar

AlterNet.org: Video

Days Since Michael Steele Said He Won't Resign

23 Days, 23 Hours, 32 Minutes, 38 Seconds.

"The Playa" said he wouldn't resign as head of the RNC ("Not me Baby! Nuh-uh. Not happening. No way, no how.")




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