Scott Brown’s “Thank God” gaffe, which has been panned across the newsosphere today, is leading to bizarre behavior from Republicans (including Brown himself). Case in point: Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) defended Brown and his comments in statements to POLITICO. “I know Scott Brown’s story, and I know that he had many obstacles to overcome in his youth,” Ayotte said. “It’s inappropriate to make light of his personal circumstances, or to disparage or belittle him for the decisions he made to improve his life. Scott is one of the best guys to work with in the Senate, and I am proud to call him my colleague.” Collins similarly turned the spotlight on Warren, saying Brown was “merely responding” to comments first made by the Harvard professor, in which she “made light of the difficult choices in his life” – a reference to Warren’s recent jab at Brown’s decision to pose nude for a magazine in his 20’s. “It’s wrong to mock anyone who had to make hard choices to overcome tough obstacles,” she said. “His story is no different than millions of Americans who are doing everything they can to make ends meet.” Gosh, to read those [...]
Here is a link to the interactive map You can plug in your zip code, and the nearest Occupy together site will be shown. SEIU is funding this fancy website work. But then, SEIU and quite a few other unions, including the Boston Labor Council have endorsed Occupy Boston. If you happen to use facebook, go ahead and plug in the word “occupy” and then add a city. I am proud to say my native Detroit is lighting up. But then the official unemployment rate for Detroit proper is 24.7% and the “real” rate is close to 40%. That is why entire city blocks of abandoned homes have been bulldozed while the homeless and doubled-up population soars. The difference between the official unemployed rate and the ‘real’ rate is those who are, in desperation, taking any part-time job, not working in their professions, and in fact unable to meet basic expenses while working. Food pantries are now essential to that population – and 1 in 4 or 1 in 6 children in the USA – the richest nation on earth – per the census and other statistic gatherers lives in poverty. Social stability is impossible with this level of [...]
Are you noticing a pattern here? I am. Twice in recent weeks, Scott Brown has been caught in an embarrassing situation. First, it was his star advisor, Eric Fehrnstrom, tweeting under the fake “CrazyKhazei” Twitter account. And now, Brownie himself was caught, well, you know. Both times, his response has been the same: it was a joke. Hey, ya know, old Eric was just trying to “inject a little levity” into politics. And me, well, gosh, I was just responding to Warren’s debate comment “in a lighthearted manner.” It’s funny, though … when the Fehrnstrom thing blew up, I recall Brown saying that he had “made clear to everyone on or associated with my team that this type of thing is not to happen again.” I assume that means that if Eric Fehrnstrom had been caught tweeting something like “@ElizabethForMA sez at #umldebate that she didn’t take her clothes off to pay 4 college. I say THANK GOD!”, he might be out of a job. But apparently Brown’s admonition to his staff doesn’t apply to Brown himself. One thing seems pretty clear: from now on, Brown hasn’t got much ground to stand on if negative attacks start coming his way. [...]
This is a pretty awesome find by the Wall Street Journal. We dug into the archives for The Wall Street Journal’s story on December 12, 1980, the day of Apple’s hotly anticipated IPO…. Apple made less than $100 million from selling stock to the public — or what Apple makes now in roughly eight hours of sales. Perhaps the best detail in the Journal’s story was that Massachusetts regulators prohibited individual investors in the state from buying Apple IPO shares. Why? Because they deemed Apple’s IPO “too risky” under rules “aimed at weeding out highfliers that don’t have solid earnings foundations.” Well…Apple earned more than $19 billion over the last nine months through June 25. Hilarious. Perhaps we can all agree that over-regulation isn’t always the best policy. Does anyone know if those regulations are still in force? Image of the 1980 newspaper article on the flip.
Today, I joined a bipartisan group of colleagues in marking 10 years of the long, bloody, costly War in Afghanistan—the longest war in American history. 1,780 soldiers have lost their lives. Husbands and wives, fathers and mothers, sisters and brothers and friends. All in support of an unclear mission. By this time next year, our total spending in Afghanistan will be over half a trillion dollars. From Day One of the Afghanistan War, we have borrowed nearly every single penny of that money, put it on the national credit card and let it explode our debt. That’s just stupid economics. Right now, the so-called “Super Committee” is trying to find ways to address our deficit and debt problems. I believe that there is no better way to reduce our deficit than to end these wars and bring our troops home to their families. Together, we have an opportunity to gather thousands of signatures to make a statement to the Super Committee: To cut spending, ending the wars must be the first item on the table. Right now, the only people asked to sacrifice anything are our brave men and women in uniform and their families. It’s not fair, and it’s not [...]
The LGBT community is disproportionately represented among those who are victims of the nation’s ongoing economic crisis. We are the un- and underemployed. We are the un- and underinsured. We are the homeless and under-housed. And we are disproportionately impacted by government-sanctioned discrimination and denial of resources and protections. If any group understands the plight of the 99% given voice by Occupy Boston, it’s the Commonwealth’s LGBT 6.5%:
Scott Brown is justly taking a lot of heat today for injecting the issue of physical appearance – specifically, that of the frontrunner in the Democratic MA-Sen primary – into the Senate race. It’s especially ironic because, 20-some years ago, Brown himself was all sad about how people sometimes focus on physical appearance, to the exclusion of what really matters. “Glamour, sex, being an object — that stuff can only go so far,” Brown told the Globe. “I want people to see that I’m a nice guy. Women look at me and think, ‘Hmmm, I wonder if he’s good in bed.’ They don’t bother to sit down and talk with me. They’re concerned with the way I look… That reaction has sometimes made my life more lonely than it should be.” Touching. Deeply touching.
IBEW Local 2222 members voted at their monthly meeting on Oct. 5 to support the occupations opposed to corporate greed in New York and Boston’s financial districts. Labor support for the occupations has been growing. On Oct. 4, the Greater Boston Labor Council passed a strong resolution in support of Occupy Boston. On Oct. 5, the Massachusetts Nurses Association rallied with occupation activists in downtown Boston while a large number of New York union members marched to join with the Wall Street occupation. The Local 2222 motion for support was presented by Paul Feeney, a Central Office Technician who works at Verizon’s 185 Franklin Street headquarters. “It is my hope that our local union offers its full support to the grassroots movement that is sweeping this country,” Feeney said. “As we know all too well, the nation’s largest corporations, including Verizon, pay zero in federal taxes and effectively shirk their responsibility to our society. This corporate greed, along with the systemic failure of the banks that fund them, has caused enormous suffering, joblessness and homelessness.” “Verizon workers learned once again this summer that we have to take our struggle for fairness to the street,” Feeney continued. “Now thousands of people [...]
National media figures are weighing in on Scott Brown’s “Thank God” moment on the radio this morning in which he apparently cast aspersions on Elizabeth Warren’s physical appearance. So far, not looking good. Taegan Goddard (Political Wire): “A big mistake” Josh Marshall (Talking Points Memo): “Not smart” Greg Sargent (Washington Post): “A major flashpoint” Dave Weigel (Slate): “Lazy … Brown needs to do a lot better” Rob Blackwell (American Banker): “Macaca moment?” Nick Baumann (Mother Jones): “The worst possible course of action” Erik Hayden (The Atlantic): “A clichéd response” Josh Lederman (The Hill): “Unlikely to help him with women voters” Sean Sullivan (National Journal): “Brown gave Democrats a gift…. Not a smart move, politically…. [S]ure to anger women’s groups and rally the Democratic base towards her side.” Garrett Quinn (boston.com, formerly Red Mass Group): “Brown’s first major gaffe … Really, really stupid…. Very bad form by Brown.” Hillary Chabot (Boston Herald): “a misfired zinger that even some conservatives are calling a ‘Biden-level faux pas’” Now, to be sure, a couple of those (Mother Jones and TPM in particular) are media that are Democrat-friendly. But most of them are more or less impartial observers. I’ve noted before that Brown has a [...]
Republican State Senator Bob Hedlund commented on the Occupy Wall Street protests on his radio show thusly: “Making your voice heard is only meaningful if the voice says something intelligent and a lot of these kids don’t know why they’re protesting,” Hedlund said during his radio show this week on WATD-FM. Hedlund said his view of the protesters was informed by a video put together by Adam Kokesh, an unsuccessful candidate for Congress that Hedlund described as a “media figure” who had put together a documentary. “It was horrifying how ignorant some of these kids that are out protesting are,” Hedlund said. Now, I don’t know anything about this Adam Kokesh fellow, but I’m guessing he’s not super sympathetic to the protesters. And I’m also guessing that it would be pretty darn easy to put together a selection of quotes from, say, tea partiers that would be deeply embarrassing. Oh gosh, look – a bunch of people have already done that. So unless Senator Hedlund thinks videos like those are a fair representation of what the tea party is about, maybe he should be a bit more circumspect. Come on, Senator. If you want to find out why the protesters are [...]