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  • I’ll be contributing later today, just need to figure out how much. Your work is an invaluable contribution to the struggle for justice. Thank you Kevin.

  • jcc2455 commented on the diary post New Document Shows FBI Interrogation Advice Draws on CIA Torture Manuals by Jeff Kaye.

    2012-08-05 17:50:13View | Delete

    but but but but but but Obama outlawed torture! I read in the nues and saw it on the teevee.

    Jeff, thanks for great reporting.

  • Drum is overly optimistic. Not sure what interest groups would weigh in. Hospitals and doctors hate medicaid because its rates are generally so low.

  • Citizens United was not a matter of a sudden radical overturning of settled law at all. There was a tension in the law between the court’s longstanding view that money = speech, its even longer-standing views that corporations = people (and/or people freely assembled), and the state’s anti-corruption interest. Campaign finance law had been moving in this direction for a while. I was not the least bit surprised by the decision, and to call it an overturning of “settled law” ignores the controversies over those principles for three decades, and real, obvious tensions within the Court’s views of campaign finance, free speech and deference to Congress’s interest in fighting electoral corruption.

    The mandate is sweeping law that establishes an unsettling precedent. How would you distinguish the individual health insurance mandate from a wingnut requirement that we own firearms?

  • jcc2455 commented on the blog post Iraq Detaining US Contractors Over Visa, Licensing Issues

    2012-01-17 09:46:41View | Delete

    shouldn’t this be viewed through the prism of power in Iraq and the US-Iranian conflict? Would assume this is about Maliki seeking to consolidate [his own personal and Shiite] power by reducing the influence of US forces and thus resolving the internal divisions through force.

    the Iranians no doubt like that, the Obama Administration not so much.

    Likely has relatively little to do with Iraqis seeking justice for US war crimes, except to the extent that posturing over them allows Maliki to achieve his short term political goals.

  • jcc2455 commented on the blog post And Another Thing on Obama’s Last Lecture

    2011-07-18 06:34:38View | Delete

    The Obama bill did not enshrine a right to health care, but a duty to buy private health insurance.

    not the same thing.

  • jcc2455 commented on the blog post Emptywheel Leaving Firedoglake

    2011-07-12 12:43:52View | Delete

    Congratulations Marcy and bmaz! You guys are a national treasure. I don’t have time to comment often, but read every word you write and will keep doing so at the new site. Your extraordinary reporting is one of the few remaining checks on an out of control empire. Looking forward to the new digs.

  • jcc2455 commented on the blog post Pull Up a Chair

    2011-06-04 06:29:08View | Delete

    the three things that matter are pleasure, pain and perserverance. find something that you actually enjoy doing or at least can tolerate, exert yourself but don’t hurt yourself, and then just keep doing it.

    Of the three, not quitting, and making time to exercise at least three days a week is much more important than whatever you decide to do.

    I suffered a serious back injury when I was around thirty, and had a high stress, long-hour job, and for too many years did no exercise except a moderate amount of walking. Several years ago I decided to try running again. The first day I walked a mile and jogged a quarter mile at a pace actually slower than the walk.

    I did it on and off for three years and learned that when I ran three days a week I maintained my current fitness, when I did less than three days a week I went backwards, and if I did four or more days a week, I made progress. There’s been a lot of backwards since that first, awful quarter mile plod, because of injuries and job travel, but I ran three and a half miles yesterday, and am on my way out for another run this morning.

    So find something you enjoy or at least can tolerate, push yourelf to exertion but don’t hurt yourself, and above all else when you’ve blocked out time to exercise but just don’t feel like going, do it anyway. Most exercise programs stop at 6-8 weeks, so don’t get discouraged if you don’t feel like you’re suddenly rounding into Olympic form. Just keep going.

    Have fun.

  • Of course! We would have full employment if it weren’t for unions!

    *smacks forehead* silly us. Has nothing to do with corporations buying our political system. Its them durn unions.

    And of course! Any gummint jobs program should/would have to pay low wages to be successful because…. well, just because. We wouldn’t want the proles to think that if they got up in the morning and put in a full day’s work that they might be able to pay their food, housing, medical, child care, transportation and education bills. No, we need to make sure they understand that they will be desperate their whole lives, and create the expectation that even with some crumb from the government, they can expect to work three crappy jobs forever.

    that’s why the stimulus was mostly tax cuts — because it’s literally impossible to create a real jobs program that garnered the support of labor unions. Because somehow it’s beyond the intellectual ken of the smartest preznit ever to pour a bunch of money into infrastructure building in a way that gets idled high wage workers back to work AND starts low wage workers down a path that leads to high wage work. He just couldn’t figure out how to simultaneously turn off the cash firehose to the banks and open it up to states, localities and job creating industries and since he’s so smart it must just be impossible.

    Right? Just impossible. Not because the banks wanted to keep the cash for themselves, or because our elites don’t give a crap about ordinary Americans, but because, well, because in MickeyKausland, the answer to every public policy question just always seems to be that you have to break the only institutions left that helped build the middle class.

    Because FDR proves it, see? Look it up!! Because FDR, right, see he busted all the unions. He didn’t sign laws to make it possible for millions of workers to form unions without getting beaten and shot, right? He didn’t do that. And he didn’t squeeze Detroit’s balls with military construction dollars and force them to deal w/the UAW. You could look it up because he didn’t do any of these things becuz he was a smart preznit just like Obama and couldn’t possibly have figured out how to do the WPA AND support the massive growth of unionization and the consequent ultimate huge upward pressure on wages, because he’s so smart he knew that’s just impossible, and anyway it’s not important now because we need wages to go down, not up, because those greedy socialist unions are ruining everything, and you could look it up.

  • Really helpful post. Although I think you missed yet another loophole. Obama is a weak negotiator except when it comes to negotiating with his base, in which case he starts with seven or eight solid punches to the hippie’s nose.

  • jcc2455 commented on the blog post Spy v. Spy: Unmasked?

    2011-02-21 10:59:54View | Delete

    “The identity of the CIA station chief is a closely guarded secret in any country.”

    Horse Hockey.

    Secret from whom? Everyone in the host country government knows. Everyone in the diplomatic community knows. All the reporters, if they’re marginally competent, know.

    I grew up in diplomatic communities. I always knew which of my friends’ parents were spooks.

    It’s pretty easy to find out. What’s fascinating is how many people are willing to keep the “secret” for the sake of polite fictions.

  • Right you are, as usual. We all depend on you to be much more careful than my sloppy reading in this instance. Thank you for all your great work.

  • Marcy:

    Great reporting as usual. However, I think you’ve jumped to one conclusion.

    “He’s not telling the Germans that Steinmeier was wrong, that he mis-quoted Condi. Rather, Koenig’s simply saying that the content–what Condi had said–was wrong.”

    The cable doesn’t say that what Condi said was wrong. It’s extremely carefully written, careful in particular not to claim any firsthand knowledge of what actually transpired in the Condi meeting, and says only that the media reports were inaccurate, i.e. that Condi and the U.S. are concerned about the El-Masri case, whereas the press reports of the meeting say she said the U.S. isn’t concerned.

    As the cable is written, Condi could have said in the meeting that the U.S. is concerned about the case, but whoever leaked the contents of the meeting to the press misconstrued what Condi said in the meeting OR Condi did say the U.S. wasn’t concerned and the DCM is cleaning up after her. The latter may be more likely, but you can’t say that’s what actually happened based on the cable’s language.