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Everybody knows

Dave Johnson reports from England.

The rationale

I’d read something several months ago that stuck in the back of my mind, and I simply couldn’t retrieve it. I knew it had something to do with why Obama does what he does, but I couldn’t locate it, either online or in my brain.

I finally remembered. It was something at least reasonably credible that described a meeting Obama had with some multinational type, who carefully explained to him that he had to break the back of the American economy, driving us down to a low-wage, low-benefits society — so we could compete with Third World countries for jobs.

And you know, I really do think this is what is going on. The Harvard guy, easily impressed by the elites, dazzled by the fact that he’s one of them, and a man without clearly defined goals or vision, bought that version of reality.

Rather than do the hard work of bringing other countries up to our standards, he’s decided we have to be broken. And he thinks it’s what’s “best” for us. He’s doing it because he cares. He sees social programs as simply postponing the the day when the workers (not the special people, like him and his friends) are living in tin shacks without running water, and he wants to wean us off the safety net.

Notice how toothless these trade treaties are? They’re not benefiting us, but then, they’re not meant to help us. They’re meant to help corporations, which are the real constituencies.

There are ways to change this. He could stop the economic and trade policies that make it almost impossible for American manufacturing to compete. He could put money into public infrastructure. He could push for something resembling an international minimum wage.

He could be the president of the entire world, and make everyone’s lives better, instead of just the upper classes. But he won’t. He won’t push for those things because they might work.

We need to figure out what to do about that.

Carry on

CSN&Y:

Lots of room under the bus

I might mention here that Steve Israel is no liberal:

Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chair Steve Israel warned lawmakers on Friday that he would have trouble recruiting candidates for office if the party caved on Medicare during the debt ceiling negotiations.

The comments came during a closed-door caucus meeting. Multiple sources confirmed the remarks, describing them as “impassioned.”

“He said recruits would not consider running if Democrats did not stand up for Medicare,” one attendee told The Huffington Post. “He added that national polling showed a seismic shift against House Republicans after the [Paul] Ryan budget because of Medicare.”

Salt

When I was a midwife, I had the hardest time convincing women it was not only okay to have salt when you were pregnant, it was necessary to process the additional fluid load on your kidneys. I don’t think people realize how much of standard medical practices are grounded in little more than mythology:

This week a meta-analysis of seven studies involving a total of 6,250 subjects in theAmerican Journal of Hypertension found no strong evidence that cutting salt intake reduces the risk for heart attacks, strokes or death in people with normal or high blood pressure. In May European researchers publishing in the Journal of the American Medical Association reported that the less sodium that study subjects excreted in their urine—an excellent measure of prior consumption—the greater their risk was of dying from heart disease. These findings call into question the common wisdom that excess salt is bad for you, but the evidence linking salt to heart disease has always been tenuous.

The grapes of wrath

Paul Ryan has a night on the town.

Why can’t I forget about you

The Subdudes:

Cat’s out of the bag

Michele Bachmann’s husband Marcus was charging the taxpayers money for reparative therapy – otherwise known as “pray away the gay.” Read all about it here.

PA poll numbers

I don’t know how Obama thinks he can win without actually fixing the economy. Why does he double down on the policies that don’t work?

Pennsylvania is looking more and more like it could be a tough hold for Barack Obama in 2012. His approval rating in the state continues to be under water at 46/48. More voters have expressed disapproval than happiness with Obama on all three polls PPP has done in the state so far in 2011. And even though Obama took Pennsylvania by 10 points in 2008 the best he can muster right now in a head to head match up with Mitt Romney is a tie.
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Meteor showers

Here’s a handy guide for the rest of the summer. Bookmark it!

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