So one three-minute copter ride (something Gov. Christie seems to love) is all it takes to untangle the complicated situation in the Middle East, and it coincidentally lines up with what the right-wingers have said all along!
PRINCETON TOWNSHIP, N.J. (JTA) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie cautioned against Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank, Jerusalem or the Golan Heights.
Speaking at a news conference Tuesday following his first trip to Israel earlier this month, Christie, who has been mentioned by Republicans as a possible vice presidential pick, said the most “eye-opening” part of his trip was a helicopter tour over part of the West Bank with Israeli military officials. Then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush expressed a similar sentiment after taking a similar helicopter tour in 1998 with then-Israeli Foreign Minister Ariel Sharon.
“Everyone who thinks they have an opinion that’s worth something on the Palestinian issue should take that tour,” Christie said. The helicopter ride took “three minutes from West Bank settlements to the Mediterranean. A missle goes much faster than a helicopter.”
For years, whenever I’ve been forced to sit through a children’s dance recital, I’ve been appalled at how blatantly they sexualize little girls. (I can assure you if I’d had girls, if they wanted to take dance lessons, I’d be sure to find a place that didn’t make them wiggle like miniature hookers.) Like this video, for instance: Why is it necessary to make nine-year-olds look like pole dancers? “Oh, because all the competition is wearing the same thing!” See how that works? (via Riverdaughter.)
ALEC Director of External Relations Caitlyn Korb spoke yesterday at a Heritage Foundation “Bloggers Briefing,” begging conservative bloggers for help while prepping “a very aggressive campaign to really spread the word about what we actually do.” Korb appears to be a new ALEC employee who recently worked for the Cato Institute. Both ALEC and Cato have received funding fromKoch family foundations. The Heritage Foundation is anALEC member.
ALEC’s new FAQ is riddled with errors, including:
“The potential solutions discussed at ALEC focus on free markets, limited government and constitutional division of powers between the federal and state governments.” It is hard to discern what voter suppression bills, tax breaks for big tobacco, bans on unionization, protections for companies whose products injure or kill, and “Stand Your Ground/Kill at Will” laws have to do with free markets.
“The organization respects diversity of thought; it is a non-partisan resource for its members, which include more than 2,000 Republican and Democratic state legislators.” Diversity of thought apparently refers to Republicans talking to Republicans. Although touted as “nonpartisan,” when CMD launched ALEC Exposed, out of 104 legislators in leadership positions in ALEC, only one was a Democrat. It’s hard to believe that ALEC phone briefs on redistricting are totally nonpartisan.
“Unlike in many private sector groups that offer model legislation, elected state legislators fully control ALEC’s model legislation process.” As ALEC’s public “Task Force Operating Procedures” (PDF, p. 8) and other documents reveal, corporate members vote alongside legislators in ALEC task forces.
“Each state legislator and their constituents then decide which solutions are best for them and their states.” For the most part, constituents have no way of knowing that corporations wrote or approved ALEC legislation behind closed doors.
You may have heard that the consensus among Congress-watchers is that they plan to cut the deal for the Grand Bargain during the lame-duck session that takes place after the election. (Although not everyone believes they can do it – and not everyone agrees they’ll try.) And of course, the Catfood Commission plan that wasn’t even passed by their own panel will be the blueprint:
WASHINGTON — The chairman of the Senate Budget Committee said on Tuesday that he would introduce the blueprint of President Obama’s bipartisan deficit reduction panel to his committee as the starting point for negotiations over a long-term debt plan.
But the committee chairman, Senator Kent Conrad, Democrat of North Dakota, made it clear that he would not push the committee to vote on amendments to the plan from the Bowles-Simpson commission or on a final version until a bipartisan consensus was reached.
“It’s unlikely we will reach agreement until after the election,” he said. “That’s just reality.”
Mr. Conrad’s announcement surprised Republicans and Democrats, who were expecting him to produce a Democratic budget that, if passed by the committee, would have been the first detailed deficit reduction plan in three years. Mr. Conrad said that committee Democrats had tried to produce a marker for the budget debate, but that he had decided to fall back on his original plan, the Bowles-Simpson blueprint, named after the chairmen of the 2010 commission, the Democrat Erskine B. Bowles and the Republican Alan K. Simpson.
A well-known progressive donor recently said, “There is going to be some kind of deal and progressives need to be talking about what that deal should be.” I suppose this is like one of those horror movies where they leave you alone with no food and a chainsaw?
How about we will all promise to vote third parties from the theoretical moment they sign their precious deal?