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Monday, February 18, 2008

The Cooper Concerns

By DAVID BROOKS
Published: February 5, 2008
New York Times

I’m not a Hillary-hater. She’s been an outstanding senator. She hung tough on Iraq through the dark days of 2005. In this campaign, she has soldiered on bravely even though she has most of the elected Democrats, news media and the educated class rooting against her.

But there are certain moments when her dark side emerges and threatens to undo the good she is trying to achieve. Her campaign tactics before the South Carolina primary were one such moment. Another, deeper in her past, involved Jim Cooper, a Democratic congressman from Tennessee.

Cooper is one of the most thoughtful, cordial and well-prepared members of the House. In 1992, he came up with a health care reform plan that would go on to attract wide, bipartisan support. A later version had 58 co-sponsors in the House — 26 Republicans and 32 Democrats. It was sponsored in the Senate by Democrat John Breaux and embraced by Daniel Patrick Moynihan, among others.

But unlike the plan Hillary Clinton came up with then, the Cooper plan did not include employer mandates to force universal coverage.

On June 15, 1993, Cooper met with Clinton to discuss their differences. Clinton was “ice cold” at the meeting, Cooper recalls. “It was the coldest reception of my life. I was excoriated.”

Cooper told her that she was getting pulled too far to the left. He warned that her plan would never get through Congress. Clinton’s response, Cooper now says, was: “We’ll crush you. You’ll wish you never mentioned this to me.”

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Posted by Nuttshell on 02/18 at 01:38 PM in Blogging
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Transcript of Lawrence Lessig Obama video

Lawrence Lessig has posted a video on why he is for Barack Obama. SJ Klein, Madeleine Price Ball and I just finished transcribing it. Lessig’s video, and our transcription, are available under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license.

“A request”
I received a strange request from someone I didn’t know in my inbox the other day — a letter asking me to make a video “enumerating why I support Barack Obama”. As Julie Cohen wrote, “Many of my smartest friends have been recently leaning towards Clinton” and that, she said, was because “I believe that his speeches are not detailed enough regarding his policy strengths” and she concluded “now is the right time for you to make a video, I know you can change a lot of minds.”

Well I doubt I can change a lot of minds, Julie Cohen, but I do agree with you that this is an extraordinarily important election.

But it’s important not because of the details about Barack Obama’s policy strengths. I believe his policies are strong, especially the policies I know something in particular about — his technology policies are extremely strong. But policy differences between these two candidates are actually quite small. As the New York Times said in their editorial endorsing Hillary Clinton, “On the major issues there is no real gulf separating the two.”

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Posted by Nuttshell on 02/18 at 01:15 PM in Blogging
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Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Who where and when got what?

It’s so hard to explain… The p p p Package.  R Kelly just can’t be serious.  Can he?

The_Package.mp3

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Posted by SPN on 02/12 at 12:19 PM in Funny StuffMusic
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Is America ready for Chris Rock as President?

Posted by SPN on 02/12 at 10:52 AM in PoliticsFunny Stuff
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I’m not saying Barack Obama is the “perfect” candidate

The other day I was listening to Joe Madison on satellite radio and a caller and he were talking about Obama’s campaign.  Madison often talks about how black people are undervalued, underestimated and marginalized in politics and within American culture.  On this particular day, I heard both of them saying how if Barack Obama were to become president that we would no longer be undervalued, underestimated and marginalized.  While I heard this, I didn’t really listen (at the time).  Today, it really hit me. And I realized how powerful that statement was.  While I don’t believe things will change overnight, can you imagine the paradigm shift, if the most powerful leader in the world were a black man?  Our kids and grandkids would have a completely different mindset about what black people can and cannot attain. 

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Posted by Nuttshell on 02/12 at 10:41 AM in BloggingPoliticsPersonal
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Friday, February 08, 2008

Can Mrs. Clinton Lose?

My boss told me about this little gem from the WSJ written by Peggy Noonan.  Wow!

If Hillary Clinton loses, does she know how to lose? What will that be, if she loses? Will she just say, “I concede” and go on vacation at a friend’s house on an island, and then go back to the Senate and wait?

Is it possible she could be so normal? Politicians lose battles, it’s part of what they do, win and lose. But she does not know how to lose. Can she lose with grace? But she does grace the way George W. Bush does nuance.

She often talks about how tough she is. She has fought “the Republican attack machine” that has tried to “stop” her, “end” her, and she knows “how to fight them.” She is preoccupied to an unusual degree with toughness. A man so preoccupied would seem weak. But a woman obsessed with how tough she is just may be lethal.

Does her sense of toughness mean that every battle in which she engages must be fought tooth and claw, door to door? Can she recognize the line between burly combat and destructive, never-say-die warfare? I wonder if she is thinking: What will it mean if I win ugly? What if I lose ugly? What will be the implications for my future, the party’s future? What will black America, having seen what we did in South Carolina, think forever of me and the party if I do low things to stop this guy on the way to victory? Can I stop, see the lay of the land, imitate grace, withdraw, wait, come back with a roar down the road? Life is long. I am not old. Or is that a reverie she could never have? What does it mean if she could never have it?

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Posted by Nuttshell on 02/08 at 07:07 PM in BloggingPolitics
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Monday, February 04, 2008

The House of Representatives Must Act

Sudanese President Bashir is brashly defying the international community - again. We need the help of China - Sudan’s biggest ally - to put an end to the outrage.

Tell your representative to ask China for help.

What did Sudanese President Bashir do with a world-infamous war criminal? He gave him a promotion.

Bashir has appointed the militia leader who helped orchestrate genocide in Darfur as a senior adviser on ethnic affairs.

This brash and consistent defiance of the U.N. won’t stop - not as long as Bashir has China to protect him.

We must tell China that enough is enough, and our representatives can help. Leaders in Congress are gathering support for an official letter to President Hu of China letting him know that his indifference toward Darfur is unacceptable.

As you know, China is Sudan’s largest trade partner and foreign investor. It is Sudan’s biggest defender in the international community, and it is the regime’s largest arms supplier. But China played a crucial role in getting Sudan to agree to a hybrid peacekeeping force last summer.

Simply put, China has the power to put an end to the games Bashir is playing.

Our representatives must pressure the Chinese government to lead the world community and end the violence in Darfur. 

Save Darfur Coalition

Posted by SPN on 02/04 at 12:58 PM in BloggingJustice / InjusticeReligion / SpritualityInternationalNewsRacism / Prejudice
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Friday, February 01, 2008

New Meaning of Dirt Poor: Hungry Haitians Resort to Eating Dirt

This is the saddest story I’ve read in a while.  My heart really breaks for these people.

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti - It was lunchtime in one of Haiti’s worst slums, and Charlene Dumas was eating mud. With food prices rising, Haiti’s poorest can’t afford even a daily plate of rice, and some take desperate measures to fill their bellies.

Charlene, 16 with a 1-month-old son, has come to rely on a traditional Haitian remedy for hunger pangs: cookies made of dried yellow dirt from the country’s central plateau.

The mud has long been prized by pregnant women and children here as an antacid and source of calcium. But in places like Cite Soleil, the oceanside slum where Charlene shares a two-room house with her baby, five siblings and two unemployed parents, cookies made of dirt, salt and vegetable shortening have become a regular meal.

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Posted by Nuttshell on 02/01 at 11:00 AM in Blogging
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