• Obama To Push For Extension Of Middle Class Tax Cuts – President Obama will begin pushing for a one-year extension of the Bush tax cuts for Americans making less than $250,000, reports the New York Times.
The New Obama Typeface: Revolution Gothic A source points out that President Barack Obama’s new typeface is Revolution Gothic, a style inspired by retro Cuban propaganda posters. Who vets the fonts?
So far so Drudge. But, to my delight, this is immediately followed by the Obama camp response:
(Obama press secretary Ben LaBolt emails: “Your GOP operative should have had the courtesy to stay sober before noon, and BuzzFeed should go back to labeling cat slideshows.”)
[alicublog/via: Snappy Answers to Idiotic Smear Jobs/7 Jul 2012]
• “Nobody knows,” Gibbs replied. “Nobody knows why he has a corporation in Bermuda, why he failed to disclose that on seven different financial disclosures, why he transferred it to somebody else’s purview the day before he became governor of Massachusetts.” “The one thing he could do, Candy, to clear up whether or not he’s done anything illegal, whether he’s shielding his income from taxes in either Bermuda or Switzerland is to do what every other presidential candidate has done, and that’s release a series of years of their own tax returns”
• Biden: ‘Mitt Romney Wants You to Show Your Papers, But He Won’t Show Us His’: Vice President Joe Biden will speak this afternoon at the National Council of La Raza on Mitt Romney’s immigration policy and taxes. According to the pre-released remarks, Biden plans to deliver the following zinger: “Mitt Romney wants you to show your papers, but he won’t show us his.” Romney supports Arizona’s immigration law, now mostly invalidated by the Supreme Court save for the “show me your papers” provision, which requires police to check the immigration status of anyone who looks “reasonably suspicious.” The GOP presidential candidate has also come under fire for refusing to release more of his tax returns. [thinkprogress/Aviva Shen/10 Jul 2012]
• More veto outrage over Gov. Haley’s cuts to “distracting” rape crisis centers – According to the governor, state funding for rape victims “attempts to serve a portion of our population for which we extend our sympathy and encouragement, but nevertheless, it is only a small portion of South Carolina’s chronically ill or abused.” Haley said the $453,000 designated for the South Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault’s rape crisis centers “distract[s] from the agency’s broader mission of protecting South Carolina’s public health.”
• VP watch: In and out: In today’s veepstakes news, Rob Portman says he recently spent six hours meeting with various Romney advisers …Nikki Haley says she isn’t being vetted at all by the Romney campaign [politico/EMILY SCHULTHEIS/10 Jul 2012]
The Drudge Report, Mitt Romney’s preferred news outlet, continued its habit of linking back to preeminent birther website World Net Daily, this time to lend credence to the theory that President Obama took a leave of absence during his time at Columbia Law School so he could serve as a special agent for the CIA in Pakistan.
The WND article, written by washed up fiction author Jerome Corsi, alleges that there is a discrepancy in Columbia University’s records which “casts doubt” on Obama’s well-documented two year tenure at the New York school. He then inexplicably suggests that the reason for the “missing year” is that Obama spent it in Pakistan as an agent for the Central Intelligence Agency:
Swirling amid the black hole of information are a host of theories about Obama’s whereabouts – particularly during the 1981-1982 school year – including speculation he was working for the CIA in Pakistan.
The story more closely resembles a Saturday Night Live parody of birther conspiracy theorists than an actual news report, yet Matt Drudge, former darling of assignment editors in newsrooms across the country, found it worthy of a link on his highly-trafficked home page.
It’s the latest in a long and growing line of conspiratorial headlines that Drudge has heavily promoted, including links to 9/11 truthers, birthers and more.
The Mitt Romney campaign’s public decision to forego actual journalists in favor of pandering to gossip sites like Drudge Report and Breitbart.com has raised concern that voters won’t actually be exposed to thorough reporting on a top presidential candidate.
[thinkprogress/Adam Peck/9 Jul 2012]
• Romney Wants To Extend The Bush Tax Cuts On High Income ‘Indefinitely’ – ”The right answer is to extend the tax rates as they current exist indefinitely, until we put in place an entirely new and reformed system.”
• Honestly, the Jobs Outlook Is Bleak Because the GOP Wants It That Way: To the detriment of us all, the GOP has opted out of taking any responsibility for fixing the entirely solvable problems of employment and economic growth. At every turn, congressional Republicans have stonewalled President Obama on jobs. But if his proposals were fully implemented, our economy would have added 257,000 jobs more in June. That’s three times greater than what we actually added and close to the 300,000-jobs-a-month mark we must hit to put a real dent in joblessness. Moreover, if Congress had passed Obama’s job program and extended his 2009 initiative to prevent up to a 100 percent of the public sector job losses at the state and local level, unemployment would fall below 7 percent. That’s pre-recession territory. And overall economic growth would be at 4.5 percent. Notably, fixing the public-sector employment crisis would solve much of black joblessness. The bottom line is that we remain in recession because Republicans have chosen to gum up the political process during a time of national crisis. Washington guru Thomas Mann calls what they’ve done “hostage taking.” [colorlines/Imara Jones/9 Jul 2012]
• The Republican Party has always been about disguising a lust for economic plunder with phony ideas about “freedom,” “Christianity,” “equality,” “civilization,”and other nice-sounding words.
• Worst TB outbreak in 20 years kept secret: The CDC officer had a serious warning for Florida health officials in April: A tuberculosis outbreak in Jacksonville was one of the worst his group had investigated in 20 years. Linked to 13 deaths and 99 illnesses, including six children, it would require concerted action to stop. That report had been penned on April 5, exactly nine days after Florida Gov. Rick Scott signed the bill that shrank the Department of Health and required the closure of the A.G. Holley State Hospital in Lantana, where tough tuberculosis cases have been treated for more than 60 years.
• Nail lady fails to understand socialism is bad for nail ladies: This quote:
“I don’t think the common person is getting it,” she said from the passenger seat of a Range Rover stamped with East Hampton beach permits. “Nobody understands why Obama is hurting them. “We’ve got the message,” she added. “But my college kid, the baby sitters, the nails ladies — everybody who’s got the right to vote — they don’t understand what’s going on. I just think if you’re lower income — one, you’re not as educated, two, they don’t understand how it works, they don’t understand how the systems work, they don’t understand the impact.”
And, this quote: George Orwell, Wartime Diaries, June 3, 1940:
From a letter from Lady Oxford to the Daily Telegraph, on the subject of war economies: “Since most London houses are deserted there is little entertaining… in any case, most people have to part with their cooks and live in hotels.” Apparently nothing will ever teach these people that the other 99% of the population exists.
Same shit, different day. [via: lawyersgunsmoneyblog/10 Jul 2012]
• “They refused to believe any politician would do such a thing.”: That’s really how bad the Ryan budget is: voters don’t believe that real politicians would actually do such a thing. The plan to gut Medicare in order to make room for tax cuts for the rich is egregious and embarrassing that groups like Politifact have to go out of their way to cover for them. And then there’s Mitt Romney, a vulture capitalist responsible for mass layoffs and outsourcing, who supported the Ryan budget and continues to advocate for tax breaks for millionaires and austerity for everyone else. …It’s almost as if the Republicans are planting gigantic targets on their backs, standing in the middle of the street and daring Democrats to hit them. It’s such openly flaunted evil that even the most jaded voters refuse to believe it’s actually real. [digbysblog/David Atkins/9 Jul 2012]
• A three judge panel in D.C. started hearing arguments about the legality of voter ID law passed in Texas on Monday. The Justice Department blocked the state law under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act back in March. Texas preemptively sued the federal government in January for not preclearing the law, which was signed last May, in a timely manner.
• More than one million Floridians disenfranchised because of felony convictions: In 2007, Florida Gov. Charlie Crist issued an executive order to restore the voting rights of a huge swath of state citizens: people with felony convictions. Obviously Charlie Crist wasn’t fulfilling his duty as a good Republican. He’s history, as is his democratic reform. Current Gov. Rick Scott reversed that order, and made regaining the franchise an almost insurmountable challenge that starts with a direct appeal to the governor. …The impact of reversing the rule is, well, exactly what Scott was intending:
According to Desmond Meade of the nonprofit Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, “Over 1 million people in Florida right now are disenfranchised,” he says. Nearly 1 in 3 of them are African American men. If these people were able to vote, Meade continues, “Florida would no longer be a swing state.” [emphasis added]
[dailykos/Joan McCarter/6 Jul 2012]
• Romney bundler to do voter education in Pennsylvania – We talked last week about how Pennsylvania now has one of the most restrictive voting laws in the country, and how very few people in Pennsylvania know about the new law, so may find it difficult to comply with it. Well, Governor Corbett is taking swift and decisive action to fix the problem that he created. He’s hired a GOP operative and Romney bundler to educate the common people (who have the right to vote) on the new law
• Romney Fundraiser Directing Media Campaign Promoting PA Voter ID Law: Pennsylvania’s new voter ID law may disenfranchise as many as 758,939 voters, but that is not stopping Gov. Tom Corbett (R-PA) from spending $249,660 to promote it. Gov. Corbett’s administration signed a contract with Chris Bravacos, a Romney fundraiser, to direct the media campaign. [thinkprogress/10 Jul 2012]
Mostly, the title makes me laugh…
Drugs, Guns and Money:
• ‘Bye-bye, Miss American Pie’ – then US helicopter appears to fire on Afghans: A video has surfaced online that appears to show a US helicopter crew singing “Bye-bye Miss American Pie” before blasting a group of Afghan men with a Hellfire missile. The footage comes in the wake of a string of damaging videos and pictures showing US forces in Afghanistan urinating on the bodies of dead insurgents, and posing with the remains of suicide bombers and civilians killed for sport by a group of rogue soldiers. Link to this video [guardian.co.uk/Emma Graham-Harrison in Kabul/6 July 2012]
• FBI Says Mexican Cartel Funneled Money Through Bank to Horse-Racing Firm: A Mexican cocaine-trafficking cartel used accounts at Bank of America Corp. to hide money and invest illegal drug-trade proceeds in U.S. racehorses, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said. The alleged ties between the violent drug gang known as Los Zetas and the second-largest U.S. bank by assets were described in a 35-page affidavit filed in federal court in Texas last month. According to an FBI agent, a horse-buying and training business created to launder drug money had accounts at the Charlotte, N.C., bank. [wsj/DAN FITZPATRICK/9 Jul 2012]
• Be very afraid of an Obama re-election! Yes, the industry that has been about as fat and happy as the banking industry due to the modern US war machine state is preparing to send out emails to workers suggesting that an Obama win in November could mean their job is in jeopardy. Even more interesting is that they will be sending out the “vote for Obama and you’re fired” emails shortly before the November election.
• Verizon says it can edit your access to Web sites like the newspaper edits content: So, basically, Verizon is saying that it can pick and choose which Web sites Verizon broadband customers can access and which it can’t, just like a newspaper picks and chooses which articles, or letters to the editor, it publishes. Which is an interesting argument since, as Jeff Jarvis notes, that means Verizon is saying that it owns the content of every Web site a Verizon customer accesses just as a newspaper owns the copyright on everything it publishes in the paper. [americablog/John Aravosis/9 Jul 2012]
• Libya’s former interim prime minister Mahmoud Jibril has won a landslide victory in the country’s first democratic election, early figures show, defying expectations that the Muslim Brotherhood would sweep to power. Jibril, a moderate who led Libya’s National Transitional Council (NTC) last year, won a clear majority of votes across most of the country, the first on Monday suggested.
• Canada’s PM Stephen Harper faces revolt by scientists: Canada’s prime minister, Stephen Harper, faces a widening revolt by the country’s leading scientists against sweeping cuts to government research labs and broadly pro-industry policies. The scientists plan to march through Ottawa in white lab coats on Tuesday in the second big protest in a month against the Harper government’s science and environmental agenda. Harper is accused of pushing through a slew of policies weakening or abolishing environmental protections – with an aim of expanding development of natural resources such as the Alberta tar sands. [guardian.co.uk/Suzanne Goldenberg, US environment correspondent/9 July 2012]
• Russia, which seems intent on positioning itself as an increasingly decisive broker in the Syrian crisis, announced on Tuesday that a flotilla of navy vessels had sailed to the Mediterranean Sea and some would dock in the Syrian port of Tartus. The naval group includes several landing craft with marines.
• As Far Right Rises in Greece, Anti-Immigrant Violence Follows: A spokesman for the party, Golden Dawn, denied that anyone associated with the group had made such a threat, and there are no official numbers on attacks against immigrants. But a new report by Human Rights Watch warns that xenophobic violence has reached “alarming proportions” in parts of Greece, and it accuses the authorities of failing to stop the trend. Since the election, an abundance of anecdotal evidence has indicated a marked rise in violence and intimidation against immigrants by members of Golden Dawn and its sympathizers. They are emboldened, rights groups say, by political support for their anti-immigrant ideology amid the worst economic crisis to hit Greece in a decade. [nytimes/10 Jul 2012]
• Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has given his permission to exhume the remains of his predecessor, Yasser Arafat, a top aide said on Monday, days after a Swiss institute reported finding elevated traces of a radioactive substance on the late leader’s belongings.
• The ghost of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat is rising from his grave to haunt Israel and the Americans.