The second guessing Hillary at State has Already begun in the media……

Rightleaners at Fox and the New Yorker are quickly pouncing on Hillary Clinton even before she OFFICALLY is out the door at State….

Theree WILL be more of this folks…..

That is until she isn’t a threat to the GOPer’s in 2016….

Sec. of State Hillary Clinton leaves office this Friday with a great deal of positive publicity and the highest approval rating of her life. She’s widely expected to run for president in 2016, and widely expected to clear the Democratic field if and when she does. In the eyes of many (roughly 69 percent), she was a great secretary of state.

But as Clinton makes her exit-tour, a few folks are beginning to question the “greatness” of her tenure.

On Sunday, Fox News senior political analyst Brit Hume said the case that Hillary Clinton has been a “great” secretary of state is “exceedingly weak.” This could be dismissed as mere right-wing dissent, but Hume is not alone. The New Yorker’s John Cassidy similarly argues today that Clinton is a “great ambassador, not a great secretary of state.”

Both Hume and Cassidy acknowledge that Clinton wasn’t exactly given the room for “greatness.” She was meant instead to be “a rockstar diplomat,” as Stephen Walt, a professor of international relations at Harvard, wrote in the Times Magazine, and she achieved that….



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Marines back away from ALL Combat jobs will be open to women….

The Marines say NOT so fast on the women in Combat….

And are saying everyone has to pass the same standards…

Let’s see how it plays…..

photo –

“If the numbers are so small with regards to qualification, then there very may well be [job fields] that remain closed,” Amos said. “Those will be few and far between.”

Amos reiterated that physical standards for combat positions would not be changed due to the end of the ban, repeating the line from Pentagon leaders that standards would be gender neutral.

“We can’t afford to lower standards,” Amos told USA Today. “We can’t make adjustments on what’s required on the battlefield.

“That’s not why America has a Marine Corps,” he said.

The Marines and the other military services are beginning to implement the end of the combat ban for women after Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey rescinded the ban last week.

The services have until 2016 to determine whether any jobs or units should remain closed to women, all of which require the approval of the Defense secretary.

The majority of the 237,000 positions closed to women are in the Army and Marines. The Marines currently has 28 fields closed to women.


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Americans don’t have a right to vote….

Betcha you didn’t know that…..

The founders were preoccupied with what they called “republican virtue.” As they saw it, a democratic society couldn’t function without a virtuous citizenry participating in public life, with virtue defined by one’s economic independence. If you owned your land, the founders believed, you had the ability to reason free of self-interest, and thus you possessed virtue. If you were a lowly worker, or dependent on others for your livelihood, you were too compromised to make political choices, and thus you lacked virtue. Of course, it’s no accident that the only people who had republican virtue—white male landowners—were also the people who defined it. They were, in their estimation, the only people to possess the independence, control, and faculties to govern the country and protect it from mob rule.

Even though we’ve expanded the Constitution to protect voting rights for women, minorities, and young adults, the idea that some people have virtue and others don’t is still embedded in our political thought. During last year’s U.S. Senate election in Massachusetts, Senator Scott Brown, a Republican, decried that public-assistance offices (under the 1993 National Voter Registration Act) were registering those who sign up for social services to vote, calling it “part of a special effort to boost one political party over another.”

Brown’s opposition was, of course, motivated by partisanship. Although only 1 percent of the state’s voters registered in those offices, Brown likely feared that in a tight election he would lose ground if low-income people were encouraged to register and vote. But the senator’s criticism harked back to the old notion of virtue—the implication being that receiving benefits (being “dependent”) robs one of the independence needed to have a say in government. The same idea is at work in felon-disenfranchisement laws: Committing a crime robs you of your virtue, the thinking goes, and it is up to the virtuous political leaders to determine whether you can return from prison as a full member of society.

The call for a right-to-vote amendment is an attempt to redefine virtue away from exclusion and toward a broader and more inclusive view….


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Fox News Ratings go South….

Remember when they where the Complete SHIT?

They ain’t anymore folks……

Of course they ain’t in the basement either…..

But MSNBC is tooting their horn…..


Fox News had its worst ratings since 2001 in January, according to the latest figures.

The network had a 12-year low in the coveted 25-54 demographic in primetime and fell to its lowest total day ratings since 2008, a press release from rival cable channel MSNBC stated on Tuesday.

And January marked the worst month ever for Fox’s “On the Record with Greta Van Susteren” among the 25-54 demo, as well as the channel’s lowest total viewership in the 10 p.m. hour since July 2008.

At  MSNBC, the cable network saw its ratings go up 11 percent in the 25-54 demo compared to January 2012. And “The Rachel Maddow Show” topped CNN’s “Piers Morgan Tonight” this month, and also ranked number one among the 18-34 demo.

Fox News, meanwhile, had nine of the 10 top programs in January — Maddow’s show was the only non-Fox News program to enter the top 10, in the last slot, as the Huffington Post pointed out.


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Hillary can’t wait but so long to let the world know if she’ll run…

….from Chris Chillizza…..

I’d  argue for a tighter timetable….

“I’m not thinking about anything like that right now,” Clinton said in response to a question asked during an online question and answer session at the Newseum Tuesday. “I am looking forward to finishing up my tenure as secretary of state and then catching up on about 20 years of sleep deprivation.”

It’s, of course, understandable that Clinton would like some rest and relaxation after  living for more than two decades in the white-hot national spotlight.  (Think about it: Clinton has been one of the most high-profile figures in America from 1992 until now. That’s a pretty amazing run.)

Political reality, however, means that Clinton likely won’t have as much time to luxuriate in not working — and not thinking about whether she wants to run in 2016 — as she might want.

Here’s why. Clinton is the first domino to fall on the 2016 board.

She is the prime mover.

People like Vice President Joe Biden, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, New York Sen. Kirstin Gillibrand, Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley will almost certainly hold off making their plans plain until Clinton says something definitive about her interest (or lack thereof) in the 2016 contest. (O’Malley seems the most likely of that group to run regardless of what Clinton does since he is term-limited out of office in 2014.)

What all of those candidates know is that for a majority of Democratic activists and, more importantly, major donors, the race for president in 2016 won’t start until Clinton makes clear what she’s doing. Every — literallyevery – conversation that O’Malley or Cuomo has with a major giver would begin with this question: “Do you know what Hillary is doing?”

That reality makes it impossible for any of the potential Democratic candidates not named Clinton to build the sort of national financial and organizational structure they will need until we know whether Clinton is in or out.

Clinton knows that she is currently freezing the field with the-door-remains-slightly-open statements like “I have no intention” of running for president. Having no intention of running is not even close to the same thing as ruling out the race.  Words matter in politics and no one understands just how much better than Clinton.

She also knows that her ability to keep the race frozen in place has a shelf life and if she waits too long to decide she will lose a fair amount of the political goodwill she has built up in the party.

So, when does Clinton need to make a declarative pronouncement about her plans? It’s hard to pinpoint a particular date but it’s hard to imagine her being able to wait much beyond the 2014 midterm elections…..



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Outdoor Cats Hunt…And they are good at it….

Cats are well……


They are hardwired to stalk and punce on living things that move…..

Dogs will deffer to hanging out with humans….

Cats, whether indoor cruising outside or feral ones do NOT forget what’s inside their brain for survival…

In report that scaled up local surveys and pilot studies to national dimensions, scientists from the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and the Fish and Wildlife Service estimated that domestic cats in the United States — both the pet Fluffies that spend part of the day outdoors and the unnamed strays and ferals that never leave it — kill a median of 2.4 billion birds and 12.3 billion mammals a year, most of them native mammals like shrews, chipmunks and voles rather than introduced pests like the Norway rat.

The estimated kill rates are two to four times higher than mortality figures previously bandied about, and position the domestic cat as one of the single greatest human-linked threats to wildlife in the nation. More birds and mammals die at the mouths of cats, the report said, than from automobile strikes, pesticides and poisons, collisions with skyscrapers and windmills and other so-called anthropogenic causes.

Peter Marra of the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute and an author of the report, said the mortality figures that emerge from the new model “are shockingly high.”

“When we ran the model, we didn’t know what to expect,” said Dr. Marra, who performed the analysis with a colleague, Scott R. Loss, and Tom Will of the Fish and Wildlife Service. “We were absolutely stunned by the results.” The study appeared Tuesday in the journal Nature Communications.

The findings are the first serious estimate of just how much wildlife America’s vast population of free-roaming domestic cats manages to kill each year.

“We’ve been discussing this problem of cats and wildlife for years and years, and now we finally have some good science to start nailing down the numbers,” said George H. Fenwick, the president and chief executive of the American Bird Conservancy. “This is a great leap forward over the quality of research we had before.”



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Senator Rubio…Applying Conservative Principles To Immigration…Red State…

By: Sen. Marco Rubio (Diary)  @ Red State

I appreciate the opportunity to respond to Erick’s post last night regarding the principles for immigration reform I have recently developed. Before diving into the details of the plan, I want to take a moment to point out how the debate about immigration reflects positively on the conservative movement in general. Unlike the left, whose default tactic is to attack and destroy the personal character of those who disagree with their views, the conservative movement is capable of accommodating a vibrant internal debate on important issues solely on the merits. RedState has always been a welcoming forum for that sort of debate.

First, let me identify the problem we face. We have a legal immigration system that doesn’t work, we don’t have an effective system to enforce our immigration laws, and we have by some estimates as many as 11 million human beings living in the United States without the proper immigration documents in a state of de facto amnesty. It’s a problem that has both political and economic ramifications on our nation.

On the political front, a growing number of voters of Asian and Hispanic descent have been convinced by the left that conservative opposition to immigration reform equates to being anti-immigrant. This is unfair, and it is untrue. But they have pulled it off and, as a result, our ability to convince these fast-growing communities that the principles of limited government and free enterprise are better for them than big government and collectivism has been impaired.

The economic ramifications, however, are even more serious. For example, our technology sector creates roughly 120,000 computer engineering jobs a year, but our universities only graduate about 40,000 students a year in that field. The long term answer, of course, is to get more American students to graduate in this field. But the immediate problem is that, in the absence of an immigration system where these workers can be brought here, these jobs are sent overseas to them.

Another example is in agriculture, where a stable and affordable domestic supply of food is critical to our national security and our quality of life. Agriculture has always required a significant work force from abroad, but we do not have a system through which growers and dairies can bring a workforce legally into the U.S.

This broken system of immigration, combined with lax enforcement, has resulted in our illegal immigration problem.

In an ideal world, we could go back to 1986 and rewrite the immigration reform efforts implemented then to account for these issues and to ensure that real enforcement measures would be implemented. But in the real world, we cannot do that. We have to deal with what we have in the best way possible and make sure that this never ever happens again.

The principles I have proposed to deal with this issue are not perfect, but I believe they create a framework for dealing with this reality in a responsible and reasonable way. And I think conservatives have already won important concessions from Democrats that we can build on to shape the actual legislation…..


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The White House explains the ‘mandate’ penalties….

The BIG Problem with Obamacare the GOP said was the MANDATE…..

The White House and President where NEVER good at expalining the thing……

Of course the individual mandate really is a tax fee that would be assesed against a small number of people if they didn’t buy Health insurance….

The Obama Administration is out with some details on WHO the mandate covers, who it doesn’t….

And YES EXemptions from the Law for different classes of American’s….

HHS referred to the politically charged provision as a system of “shared responsibility” payments.

The mandate penalty “applies only to the limited group of taxpayers who choose to spend a substantial period of time without coverage despite having ready access to affordable coverage,” HHS said in a fact sheet on the new rules.

The same fact sheet also noted findings from the Congressional Budget Office that less than 2 percent of the American public will have to make a payment under the mandate.

In 2014, people who choose not to buy insurance and don’t quality for an exemption from the mandate will have to pay a fine of $95. The penalty increases to $695 by 2016, and then rises annually based on a pre-determined formula.

Although conservatives have railed against the mandate since Obama adopted it in 2009, some policy experts are concerned that it’s too weak to work — that it won’t be an effective incentive for young, healthy people to buy insurance.

Still, HHS and the IRS chose to focus on exceptions as they implemented the mandate Wednesday.

The Affordable Care Act includes exceptions for people with religious objections to traditional healthcare services, as well as a slew of income-related carve-outs.

“A principle in implementing the individual shared responsibility provision is that the shared responsibility payment should not apply to any taxpayer for whom coverage is unaffordable, who has other good cause for going without coverage, or who goes without coverage for only a short time,” HHS said.

People who do not make enough money to pay federal income taxes aren’t subject to the mandate, and neither are people for whom coverage would be unaffordable, as defined by the healthcare law. For employer-based coverage to meet the law’s definition of affordability, it can’t cost more than 9 percent of an employee’s salary.

Undocumented immigrants aren’t subject to the mandate, since they’re ineligible for government assistance to help buy healthcare coverage.


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More Parents supporting their adult children these days….

A languishing economy…..

A drastic drop in empolyment…..

Parents continuing to support their children into adulthood….

More and more..

The increase is striking since the share of middle-aged adults with children and living parents has remained stable.

For at least three decades, sociologists have noticed a trend of more parents paying much of the freight until their children are well into their 20s, but the faltering economy has caused those numbers to spike.

“The causes include the difficulty young adults have finding decent employment and the longer time they take to get the education they need,” said Andrew Cherlin, a sociologist at Johns Hopkins University who studies families. “Until we figure out how to integrate young adults into the economy, their parents will be called upon to support them.”

The Pew survey of 2,500 adults found that nearly half the people ages 40 to 59 have given money in the past year to at least one child who is 18 or older. Many of them supported children still attending school. But almost half the parents who say they are the primary source of support for a grown child cite other reasons.

The findings reflect an evolution in the image of who makes up the sandwich generation. In the past, the burden typically was shouldered by a middle-aged woman who stayed at home caring for young children and aging parents. During the recession and the slow recovery, more adult children have returned home while they look for jobs. Even the percentage of married couples living in a parent’s home has returned to levels not seen since the turn of the 20th century…..


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Israeli jets strike convoy along Syrian border with SAM missles….

….from CNN….

Israeli fighter jets attacked a convoy along the Lebanese-Syrian border overnight, a senior U.S. official said Wednesday, as tensions mounted over the potential fallout from Syria’s protracted civil war.

The official said the United States does not believe the airstrike was linked to growing concerns about Syria’s chemical weapons.

“It was unrelated to chemical weapons, we see no nexus,” the official said Wednesday. The strike is thought to have hit a “target of opportunity.”

“Whether it was an attack against a supply convoy or a terrorist leader, it’s not particularly surprising,” senior Brookings fellow Michael O’Hanlon said. “At first glance, it likely won’t be seen as a large escalation. Though there’s still a possibility for retaliation.”


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Daily Real Clear Politics Polling 1/30/13……

Wednesday, January 30
Race/Topic   (Click to Sort) Poll Results Spread
President Obama Job Approval Rasmussen Reports Approve 53, Disapprove 46 Approve +7
President Obama Job Approval Reason-Rupe/PSRAI Approve 52, Disapprove 42 Approve +10
Congressional Job Approval Reason-Rupe/PSRAI Approve 17, Disapprove 74 Disapprove +57

from realclearpolitics

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NY Gov Cuomo sees a drop in his polling numbers…Gun’s?

Andrew Cuomo has a drop from 74% to 59% in polling approval numbers…..

( New York just pasted the first post Sandy Hook shooting anti-Gun Law )

That IS a big drop….

But at 59% and numbers consistently in that range from even BEFORE he became Governor of New York State he’s doing ok….

He’s gotta keep the numbers good for a 2014 re-election run and get ready should he want to challenge Hillary if she DOES run or run outright if Hillary doesn’t run….

“With approval ratings that consistently topped 70 percent, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo had the political capital to spend when he set out to pass the toughest gun control laws in the nation,” said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. “It is possible that the gun law cost him some of that political capital, but a 2-1 job approval rating still makes him the envy of most governors.”

Voters in non-gun homes approve of the governor 68 percent to 19 percent, the survey showed, while voters in households with a gun disapprove 50 percent against 40 percent approval.

Republican support for Cuomo — who is often mentioned as a 2016 Democratic presidential contender — dipped sharply this month, dropping from 68 percent approval-18 percent disapproval in December, to 44 percent-43 percent. He also took a tumble among Democrats, where his approval-disapproval numbers are 74 percent-14 percent, down from December’s 82 percent-9 percent. Cuomo’s numbers among independents clocked in at 54 percent-32 percent, a dip from December’s 70 percent-12 percent approval-disapproval rating from that group.

Thirty-four percent of voters surveyed said Cuomo’s gun legislation goes “too far,” while 30 percent said it doesn’t go far enough.


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British Anti Immigration Posters…The Oligarch Kings….

by  @ The Oligarch Kings



Anti-Immigration feelings are nothing new, nor regrettably the posters that go with it.  From the notices in the nineteenth century saying No Blacks, No Irish, No Chinese both America and Britain have in their time sought to limit the immigration that made them great.

In America, and on the continent, this takes the form of belittling the immigrant saying they come with disease, poor genes, inadequate dental hygiene, ghastly dress sense, ignorance and filth.  We are to be persuaded that all they want is our dire squalid social housing, and a life on the dole.

Rarely though can there ever have been a programme where the host country coughs up for films to be commissioned and shown abroad which say “look piss off we’re shite, it rains all the time, and you won’t like it here”.  But this is what the British Government has apparently been considering in a desperate attempt to dissuade the hordes of Bulgarians and Romanians that the Daily Mail say will be battering against the gates come the end of the year.

come here“Loo” is a Britishism for Lavatory

Naturally the British public too have leapt at the challenge and these two posters are but a small example of those now bouncing round the web.

The top one is by Paul Bayfield (and very good too) and the second by Andrew Campbell Hares.

Sheesh…..only the British.

Not that America is wholly beaten in these stakes.

illegal immigrants


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The US Economy shrinks by .1% the last Qtr…..

I wonder what is gonna be the numbers for THIS quarter in response to the payroll tax hike kicking in January First?

In all the writing for the piece there is NO mention of Hurricane Sandy which stopped North-East Spending and they set it back in motion with replacement purchases in auto and other products….

The piece does point to a drop in Defense Spending which should make some people happy….None of them Republicans in Congress….The President has been working on cuts from the Pentagon and the US is  winding down some operations in the Afghan conflict…

Gross domestic product, the volume of all goods and services produced, dropped at a 0.1 percent annual rate, weaker than any economist forecast in a Bloomberg survey and the worst performance since the second quarter of 2009, when the world’s largest economy was still in the recession, Commerce Department figures showed today in Washington. A decline in government outlays and smaller gain in stockpiles subtracted a combined 2.6 percentage points from growth.

Bolstered by a drop in fuel prices and the biggest gain in incomes in four years, consumer spending accelerated as the biggest part of the economy overcame superstorm Sandy, a bitter presidential contest and Washington budget battles. The gain in spending may be difficult to sustain this quarter as a tax increase takes a bigger chunk from pay, one reason why Federal Reserve policy makers, meeting today, are projected to press on with plans to pump money into the world’s largest economy.

“The number isn’t as bad as it looks,” said Paul Edelstein, director of financial economics at IHS Global Insight in Lexington, Massachusetts, whose team projected a 0.3 percent gain, the lowest in the Bloomberg survey. “This really was a story about a payback in national defense spending. Consumer spending growth picked up, fixed investment was fairly strong.”


Ezra Klien on ‘the why’ in Defense Budget drop…..

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Daily Kos Elections Morning Digest 1/30/13: How will Rick Perry win re-election with numbers like this?

Reposted from Daily Kos Elections by David Nir

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Want the scoop on hot races around the country? Get the digest emailed to you each weekday morning. Sign up here.

Leading Off:

• TX-Gov: Look out! PPP’s new numbers on GOP Gov. Rick Perry’s re-election chances are grim indeed for the incumbent. His job approval stands at an abysmal 41-54 and his re-elects are a horrific 31-62! I guess that happens when you embarrass yourself before a national audience after hanging on to the governor’s mansion for a dozen years. Even among Republican primary voters, 47 percent want someone else versus only 41 percent who want Perry as their standard-bearer once more.

And in an actual head-to-head versus AG Greg Abbott, things are even worse: Perry has a slim 41-38 lead, but as Tom Jensen points out, Abbott’s name rec is only 59 percent. I’m not sure how Perry can recover from that: Abbott has raised tons of money (thanks to Texas’s virtual lack of state contribution limits, and big business preferring him as theirpaisan to the spent Perry), and indeed, he leads 55-33 among those who have an opinion of him, whether positive or negative. But interestingly, “more conservative” voters prefer Perry, which gives me hope that he can ride extremist enthusiasm to another nomination.

And we really do have to root for Perry here. Take a look at how he performs against a variety of potential Democratic opponents, compared to Abbott’s far better showing against the same array:

Democrat Perry Abbott
2010 nominee Bill White 44-47 46-39
San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro 47-42 46-36
State Senator Wendy Davis 47-41 46-34
Houston Mayor Annise Parker 47-40 47-35

Note that Perry actually loses to Parker’s predecessor, Bill White, who had the misfortune of being the right candidate running in the wrong year. Would he actually be willing to make another go of it? I tend to doubt it, because he’d have to bank on Perry as his opponent, since even White would be a steep underdog to Abbott—and even against Perry, getting to 50%+1 is no easy task.

On top of that, Castro’s already ruled himself out and Davis has largely confirmed she’ll seek re-election to her Senate seat. (I don’t think anyone’s thought to ask Parker, though I can’t imagine she’s interested.) But regardless of who our nominee is, I’m definitely wishing hard for the nastiest possible GOP primary, topped with a Rick Perry cherry at the end….

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With a Good poll Scott Brown seems ready to run for the Senate Not Governor of Mass…

ex-Senator Scott Brown had fallen below radar after losing to Elizabeth Warren …..

Everyone thought he’d probably run for Governor Of Massachusetts….

Being careful NOT to get a position for a loss of his political career…..

Forget that….

A new poll just out points to the fact that the Mass Democratic establishment has got in line behind Markey who is NOT well know in his state….And Scott Brown IS 20 points better know and ahead of Markey….

It looks like Rep. Markey will get primaried and Scott Brown is gonna run….

Stay tuned….

Scott Brown is moving ahead with behind-the-scenes preparations for a 2013 Senate campaign to fill secretary of state nominee John Kerry’s seat, Massachusetts political insiders told The Daily Caller.

Insiders believe that Brown is strongly leaning toward running in a 2013 Senate special election against veteran Democratic congressman Ed Markey, rather than waiting a year and running for the Massachusetts governorship in 2014.

Kerry is expected to be confirmed as secretary of state, and Markey has all but cleared the Democratic field by announcing his candidacy for the seat. Key Brown staffers are currently making a “full-court press” to line up state representative endorsements for Kirsten Hughes, one of Brown’s 2012 campaign finance directors, who is running for the Massachusetts GOP chairperson position against conservative businessman Rick Green.

The election will be held Thursday in Natick…..



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