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is assuming that there will be a republican president in 2012, and start taking steps to limit the damage that she/he will be trying to inflict.


Crash course

On SportsCenter last night, ESPN ran a segment on collisions at home plate. Runners attempting to score routinely crash into catchers blocking the plate in an attempt to separate them from the ball.

Why are the catcher and the plate dealt with differently than any other position and base? A runner who barrels into an infielder trying to turn a double play would be called out for interference (and so would the runner behind him). Imagine a would-be base stealer lowering his shoulder and crashing into the fielder. Should that be allowed? What if runners legging out infield grounders routinely tackled first basemen? What if a runner could shove a pitcher covering first base on a ground ball to the right side? What if every instance of opposing players coming into close proximity of one another carried the potential for violent collisions?

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Highway 61.

Can somebody tell me?

Will I be able to go to school this fall? Pell grants and federal loans?

Will my health insurance be cut? BadgerCare Plus Core?

The funds from the county for my counseling has been cut in half already.

What about my daughter? She’s on SSI. What will happen to her payments? And her health insurance and the services she’s getting?

We live in the county seat, where all the services are provided, so there’s a lot of people with problems here. What’s going to happen to them? And what happens to the support people?

Do you know about this?
Send them something for me, please.

Scott Walker running amok over Wisconsin citizens. Again.

The Wisconsin legislature is finalizing a bill to close ten Department of Motor Vehicle centers located in Democratic districts within the state.

The DMV office one town down from where I used to live is only open so many hours a month – three of the Tuesdays in the month, and not something simple like “1st, 2nd, 3rd.” Now people will be driving 1-1 1/2 hours one way to deal with licensing. And notice I said driving – we don’t have no stinking mass transit.

Makes it so you’ve got to find somebody with a car you can trust to go that far. Maybe in a blizzard or an ice storm. Somedays you gotta hope the helicopter isn’t too busy.

Of course, Walker and the Big Sleaze Six will be out of here (not) soon enough, but there will still be the intransigent remainder, to say nothing of Prosser on the Court.

Roller Coaster

I suspect we’ll be seeing a lot of this in the coming week:

U.S. stock futures fell, indicating the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index will drop after rallying within 1.4 percent of a three-year high, as President Barack Obama and Congress failed to reach an agreement on raising the federal debt limit, intensifying concern the nation will default.

S&P 500 futures expiring in September declined 1 percent to 1,327.20 at 2:31 p.m. in Tokyo. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures lost 127 points, or 1 percent, to 12,494.
The impasse has boosted the chance S&P will cut the U.S. credit rating from AAA within three months to 50 percent, the company said July 21.

“It’s a major disappointment that they can’t come to a compromise of some sort,” James Dunigan, chief investment officer in Philadelphia for PNC Wealth Management, said in a telephone interview. The firm oversees $109 billion. “We came down to the 11th hour. There’s an increasing likelihood that without a significant deal the chances of a debt downgrade will rise. If you re-rate the safest security in the world, everything else gets re-rated against that.”

And all of this, I will remind you, is because Republicans see their pledge to Grover Norquist as more important than their oath of office.

There’s a word for people like that: Benedict Arnold.

‘Pure ignorance’

I am not convinced that it’s “pure ignorance” that is driving young and poor white voters away from the Democratic party. I think voters who traditionally identify with Democrats have some legitimate gripes with the Obama administration. Sure,

What unemployment crisis?

On and on goes media coverage of the debt ceiling standoff, a shocking spectacle of Democratic weakness and Republican greed. What’s not being covered in the ongoing misery of the millions of Americans who lost jobs and/or homes and see no signs that the White House and Congress intend to do anything in the way of jobs creation.

George Packer recently shed light on the situation by itemizing the travails of one desperate family and showing how irrelevant all such families are to the blowhards we elected to help mend the economy. Then he put the rot of our political system in perspective:

The sociologist Max Weber, in his 1919 essay “Politics as a Vocation,” drew a distinction between “the ethic of responsibility” and “the ethic of ultimate ends”—between those who act from a sense of practical consequence and those who act from higher conviction, regardless of consequences. These ethics are tragically opposed, but the true calling of politics requires a union of the two. On its own, the ethic of responsibility can become a devotion to technically correct procedure, while the ethic of ultimate ends can become fanaticism. Weber’s terms perfectly capture the toxic dynamic between the President, who takes responsibility as an end in itself, and the Republicans in Congress, who are destructively consumed with their own dogma. Neither side can be said to possess what Weber calls a “leader’s personality.” Responsibility without conviction is weak, but it is sane. Conviction without responsibility, in the current incarnation of the Republican Party, is raving mad.

Packer’s use of the word “sane” might be dubious, but he makes it clear the the jobs picture won’t brighten until we stop electing people to high office who are weak, corrupt and/or crazy.

Let’s make it “All Panda,”

“all the time.”

It’s Sunday. Take some time to smell the…

God taps Rick Perry for prez…

but what about the other Christian worthies?

… Lest you think the Lone Star State has the only direct line to the divine, note that, in this presidential cycle, both Michele Bachmann and Herman Cain have said they are running at God’s behest. So, for that matter, has Paul Sims, an ex-firefighter and self-proclaimed “George Washington of today” from Rolla, Missouri, who shared his plans via a YouTube video posted in March. In a less conventional move, Mike Huckabee explained that his decision not to run for president was based on God’s guidance.

All of which means the governor with the cowboy boots and the permanent wave might encounter a bumpy road should he decide to go with God.  As the Good Book (almost) says, “Many are called, but only one is chosen for the nomination.”

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