…Is no better than Mittens …not abroad.
• Australian foreign minister Bob Carr denies saying the US was “in decline” in private meeting with Romney. Through the Australian embassy, Carr said that’s not what he meant at all. “Senator Carr’s comment was in praise of American economic strengths,” the embassy said in a statement. “Reports suggesting these were a criticism of the American economy are incorrect.”
• As Romney prepares to go abroad, it’d be nice if he avoided international incidents. Indeed, to borrow a suggestion from March, if the inexperienced candidate who’s struggled badly with the basics of international affairs is going to meet with foreign officials, perhaps he should release transcripts of the meetings to the public, so voters can know what kind of other mistakes he’s making on the global stage.
• “Romney picked the wrong guy to use as a political pawn.”: It’s looking more and more improbable that Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr really confided to Mitt Romney that he was pining for Mitt to get into the White House and use his business know-how to set America back on the straight and narrow.
And Mittens Here:
• Quote of the Day: Mitt Romney Told Olympians  They Didn’t Get There Alone – Keep in mind that Romney has seized on an out-of-context part of one of President Barack Obama’s speeches to say Obama believes no businessmen got where they are soley on their own efforts.:
“You Olympians, however, know you didn’t get here solely on your own power,” said Romney, who on Friday will attend the Opening Ceremonies of this year’s Summer Olympics. “For most of you, loving parents, sisters or brothers, encouraged your hopes, coaches guided, communities built venues in order to organize competitions. All Olympians stand on the shoulders of those who lifted them. We’ve already cheered the Olympians, let’s also cheer the parents, coaches, and communities. All right! [pumps fist].”
• The up-by-his-bootstraps businessman [Jack Gilchrist, president of Gilchrist Metal] who stars in an ad for Republican hopeful Mitt Romney seems to have built his business through government-sponsored loans, putting a dent in the campaign’s attack on President Barack Obama’s saying to business owners, [heavily edited] “you didn’t get there on your own.” Reporting by The New Hampshire Union Leader disputed this claim by looking into Gilchrist’s history, revealing that he took over $1 million in government loans since the 1980s, including $800,000 in tax-exempt bonds issued by the New Hampshire Business Finance Authority to build a new manufacturing plant and buy equipment.
• Romney foreign policy adviser Amb. John Bolton appeared on Sunday on a radio show hosted by Aaron Kelin, the Jerusalem bureau chief for the conspiracy website World Net Daily, known as WND. WND is perhaps best known for pushing Obama “birther” conspiracies. For his part, Bolton had, not including this weekend’s episode, appeared on Klein’s radio show at least three times this year alone, with more appearances before that.
• One of the remarkable realizations is that Romney is now shaping his entire presidential campaign around a quote Obama didn’t say and doesn’t believe. Think about that for a second: after nearly four years of the Obama presidency, Romney isn’t attacking something Obama has done or intends to do; he’s attacking manufactured nonsense and making it the centerpiece of his candidacy. That, for lack of a better word, is pathetic.
• Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl (R) speaking on the Senate floor claimed that the president’s usage of the phrase “middle class” is “misguided and wrong and even dangerous.” Calling for an end to rhetoric about classes, Kyl blasted Obama for “incessantly” talking about class, “particularly the middle class”.
• The Choice
• “In politics we all tolerate a certain amount of spin. I understand these are the games that get played in political campaigns. But when folks omit entire sentences of what I said — they start splicing and dicing — you may have gone a little over the edge.” – Obama, in response to heavily edited Romney ad.
• LEGITGOV: DHS-FBI 17 May 2012 Memo: ‘Terrorists’ Interest in Attacking Theaters and Similar Mass Gatherings’. On 17 May 2012, the Department of Homeland Security and Federal Bureau of Investigation issued a warning regarding possible attacks to US movie theaters. The release, ‘Terrorists’ Interest in Attacking Theaters and Similar Mass Gatherings,’ has been saved by Citizens For Legitimate Government (CLG) as the memo appears to have been pulled by the DHS/FBI.[ DHS_FBI_theater_attacks_170512 *PDF]
• Though the alleged gunman at the theater shooting last Friday was armed to the teeth, able to fire off 60 rounds in a minute, and dressed fully in bulletproof gear, former Arizona State Senator Russell Pearce thinks one of the people in the theater should have been able to take him down. In a Facebook post that has since been deleted, Pearce criticized the people in the theater for a lack of courage and for not being armed, saying that if they had been, they could have saved lives. [Image]
• Editing: According to Big Hollywood, “Rapper Ice-T [says] he’ll give up his guns when everybody else does.” According to “Rapper Ice-T” in the same interview, only a few seconds later, “[t]he right to bear arms is because that’s the last form of defense against tyranny. Not to hunt. It’s to protect yourself from the police.”
Islamophobia and other hateful garbage:
• Bachmann target Huma Abedin(Hillary Clinton aide)has been placed under police and federal protection after being threatened by a New Jersey man, a Muslim, who has been questioned by the New York Police Department and the State Department, but has not been charged.
• Tea Party Congressman Louie Gohmert (R-TX) lashed out at Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) -
GOHMERT: Well, it’s obvious that John McCain didn’t even read the letter because of what he said in accusing Michele and us of making these horrible accusations. There were five letters and there were many things that are stated that are facts in each letter. And I wish some of these numb nuts would go out and read the letter before they make these horrible allegations about the horrible accusations we’re making. But we also know that John McCain himself had said back in the early stages of stuff going on in Egypt that he was, in his words, “unalterably opposed to helping the Muslim Brotherhood.” Well, obviously the unalterable person has been altered, so he is okay with it now.
• Prominent Arizona Tea Party leader Wes Harris emailed his supporters yesterday to announce that he would be trying to recall Sen. John McCain (R-AZ). The offense? McCain defended Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s top aide, Huma Abedin, after Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) suggested that she is linked to the Muslim Brotherhood. Claims all Muslims are threats.
• “The Muslim Brotherhood can’t even penetrate the Egyptian government,” said a Brotherhood leader in Egypt’s Daqheleya province, Ibrahim Ali Iraqi, in response to the accusations his group had infiltrated top US agencies. “I haven’t heard these rumors, but they strike me as ridiculous,” said Ahmed Al Nahhas, a long-time Brotherhood activist and leader in Egypt’s second-largest city, Alexandria. “Surely the United States government selects its employees very carefully.”
• Anti-tax crusader Grover Norquist helped the Muslim Brotherhood infiltrate the U.S. government, according to the report that Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) cited in an attack on top State Department aide Huma Abedin.
• Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI) stepped up to defend Huma Abedin, a top aide to Secretary of State Hilary Clinton, and the rights of all Muslim-Americans yesterday against Rep. Michele Bachmann’s (R-MN) spurious accusations that she is affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood, calling them “the wrong thing to do.” [video]
• This is what your hatred brings: The recent home invasion and vicious attack on a lesbian woman in Lincoln, Nebraska is being described by the Human Rights Campaign as “truly horrific.” The LBGT rights organization is calling on federal authorities to investigate the alleged hate crime. CNN reported that three masked men allegedly broke into the 33-year-old woman’s home early Sunday morning, tied her up, and carved words into her arms and stomach with a knife. One of the words included the derogatory slur “dyke.” The men also spray-painted anti-gay graffiti inside the home and set the house on fire. Police said the fire did little damage.
• Savannah Dietrich Followup: Defense attorneys for two teenagers who pleaded guilty to assaulting 17-year-old Savannah Dietrich have withdrawn their motion that she be held in contempt for tweeting the names of her attackers in defiance of a court order.
• Pennsylvania formally acknowledged that there’s been no reported in-person voter fraud in Pennsylvania and there isn’t likely to be in November. The state signed a stipulation agreement with lawyers for the plaintiffs which acknowledges there “have been no investigations or prosecutions of in-person voter fraud in Pennsylvania; and the parties do not have direct personal knowledge of any such investigations or prosecutions in other states”, “will not offer any evidence in this action that in-person voter fraud has in fact occurred in Pennsylvania and elsewhere” or even argue “that in person voter fraud is likely to occur in November 2012 in the absense of the Photo ID law.”
• The Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division has launched a formal investigation into whether Pennsylvania’s voter ID law discriminates against minorities, TPM has learned. DOJ’s probe marks the first time it has publicly acknowledged a formal investigation of a voter ID law passed in a state which is not covered by Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, which requires certain states with a history of racial discrimination to have changes to their voting laws precleared. [ TPM-Docs-DOJ-Letter-on-Pennsylvania-s-Voter-ID-Law *pdf]
Human Medical Experimentation:
• An executive of a Tokyo Electric Power Co. subcontractor forced its nine workers at the crisis-hit Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant to cover their radiation monitoring meters with lead-made plates, the company said Saturday.