I apologize for this short diary today. As oil prices drop into the $70's, Tar sand oil from Alberta, which costs more than $85 just to extract, no longer make economical sense. So even if the GOP crams through Keystone XL, it is not going to be built in the near future. It will be a Pyrrhic victory, just like all their other right wing 'victories'.
If you have been watching the news for the past week, you would have had the impression that the entire southern border has been overrun by illegal immigrant youths lured in by Obama's Dream Act deferrals, while border guards are reduced to wringing their hands helplessly. In reality, none of that is even remotely true.
If you have ties to the chinese american community here in California, you have no doubt seen a torrent of chain emails railing against SCA-5 this past 2 weeks. SCA-5 is a state constitutional amendment to overturn Prop 209 and re-instate race-based affirmative action to college admissions. This issue has politicized asian americans like you wouldn't believe, in a way that serves as a cautionary tale to state Democrats.
Here in the land of the free, you can blaspheme god and man all you want, but you best watch your mouth around perishable vegetables and meats. Diane Sawyer and ABC News just got hit with a $1.2 billion lawsuit by Beef Products, Inc. in South Dakota- a state which has so-called 'veggie libel laws'. Apparently ABC had slimed a beef product known as 'lean, finely textured beef', AKA Pink Slime.
We've all seen this movie before. In 2009 ACORN got ambushed by a sting video, and the Democratic congress panicked and gutted ACORN. Subsequent investigations (CRS, MA Attorney General, CA Attorney General) found that ACORN had done nothing wrong in these sting videos. The supposed sting video was revealed to be selectively edited and phonier than a 3 dollar bill. But all that vindication came too late - Congress already killed ACORN. Not even a year later- USDA appointee Shirley Sherrod was ambushed with another gotcha video from Breitbart. Tom Vilsack fired her summarily. And then he found out that her quote was taken completely out of context, and her speech, far from being racist, was actually a personal testimony against racism. Sherrod was vindicated, but the Obama administration's tragicomic incompetence was on the front page for a solid week.
First of all, let me start by saying that I agree wholeheartedly that the DA and the police have commited practically every prosecutorial abuse possible here: biased line-up identification, interrogation and coercion of minors without their parents' presence, use of jail house snitches, staged re-enactments with witnesses, and pressure on witnesses to converge their stories.
However that doesn't mean Troy Davis is innocent.
The recent high profile and increasingly suspicious collapse of Solyndra has left the Obama Administration looking like a bunch of dolts. The right wing noise machine is just besides themselves that Obama has bet and lost $535 million on Solyndra loan guarantees. Lost in the noise however is yesterday's breakthrough announcement from First Solar, another american solar panel pioneer.
Here is some good news to start your weekend on. Timothy Geithner just announced that the total costs of the bailouts are projected to be only $87 billion.
With Health Care Reform on the home stretch, I would like to switch gear and talk about the powderkeg issue of Immigration Reform. Even within the comfortable confines of DailyKos, Immigration Reform is a controversial subject. In order to understand our differences better, I am doing a "Sense of the Kos" survey in order to see where we, as a community of progressives, stand on this issue.
This is a late night cram session on the House Reconciliation Act. So curl up on the couch and join the study group:
Due to the late hour and my brain's impending shut-down, this diary will just be slap-dash Cheat sheet style. Without further ado....
Continuing on with my 'drill-down' study of the Senate Health Reform Bill; today we'll look at a groundbreaking change for Medicaid that seems to have received little notice.
Preface: In the interest of breaking through the current 'Kill Bill' vs 'Save & Improve Bill' deadlock here on DKos- I am doing a nooks-and-cranny exploration of the HCR Bill. Hopefully this will refocus our energies and advance the debate beyond the current logjam.
One favorite punch among mexican boxers is a short, upwards punch aimed at just below the right rib cage. A lot of times a casual spectator might not even see this punch landing except on replay. Just as often, the recipient of said punch would'nt feel its effects until a good 10 seconds later- when he doubles over onto the canvas.
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