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I wanna dance with somebody

Ben Rector:

James Carville could be correct…..

James Carville could be correct about the political fallout if there is a court loss in the ACA case and health care costs continue to spiral out of control.

“You know what the Democrats are going to say – and it is completely justified: ‘We tried, we did something, go see a 5-4 Supreme Court majority,’” Carville added. “The public has these guys figured out. Our polls show that half think this whole thing is political.”

I guess it would be great for political gain, but, what about those who will not be able to get into the health care system?






Digby: So much for the reality-based community!


Brad DeLong with a well-placed question about why any reasonable person would want a Grand Bargain with Republicans:

A question for Ezra Klein:

As a Clinton administration staffer, a question for Ezra. Suppose we do a bipartisan deficit-reduction deal over the next two years. Why don’t you think that the next time the Republican Party gets back into power afterwards they won’t do what they did the last time they had working majorities everywhere in 2001-3, and indeed the time before that they had working majorities in 1981-2: large tax cuts for the rich that destabilize America’s public finances. It’s hard for any veteran of the Clinton Administration to reach any conclusion other than that fixing America’s long-run fiscal dilemmas requires first the complete destruction of today’s Republican Party, and those of us who care about America’s fiscal future need to turn all of our energies to that end. Can you give me reasons not to believe that?

Another horror story

There are far too many of these stories. Maybe now, thanks to the Trayvon Martin case, internal affairs investigators will actually do their jobs and reporters won’t be quite so eager to accept the official version of events. This case in November, featured on Democracy Now!, involved a 68-year-old man who accidentally pressed his medical alarm and ended up shot to death by police:

JUAN GONZALEZ: As the shooting death of Trayvon Martin continues to draw national attention, today we look at another controversial shooting of an African-American male that has received far less scrutiny. On the morning of November 19th, a 68-year-old former marine named Kenneth Chamberlain with a heart condition accidentally pressed the button on his medical alert system while sleeping. Responding to the alert, police officers from the city of White Plains, New York, arrived at Chamberlain’s apartment in a public housing complex shortly after 5 a.m. By the time the police left the apartment, Kenneth Chamberlain was dead, shot twice in the chest by a police officer inside his home. Police gained entry to Chamberlain’s apartment only after they took his front door off its hinges. Officers first shot him with a taser, then a beanbag shotgun, and then with live ammunition.

AMY GOODMAN: Police have insisted the use of force was warranted. They said Kenneth Chamberlain was emotionally disturbed and had pulled a knife on the officers. This is David Chong, public safety commissioner in White Plains.

DAVID CHONG: The officers first used an electronic taser, which was discharged, hit the victim, and had no effect. While the officers were retreating, the officers then used a shotgun, a beanbag shotgun.

AMY GOODMAN: Relatives of Kenneth Chamberlain have questioned the police portrayal of events that led to his death, and they say audio and video recorded at the scene back up their case. According to the family, Kenneth Chamberlain can be heard on an audio recording of his call to the medical alert system operator saying, quote, “Please leave me alone. I’m 68 with a heart condition. Why are you doing this to me? Can you please leave me alone?” Officers allegedly responded by calling Chamberlain a racial slur while urging him to open the door. The audio recording of the incident has not been made public and remains in the possession of the Westchester District Attorney’s office.

In early December, Kenneth Chamberlain, a retired marine, was buried with military honors. The family posted video of part of the ceremony.

Several months after his death, the name of the officer who killed Kenneth Chamberlain has yet to be released. The DA has vowed to convene a grand jury to determine if any of the officers should face charges.

We invited the White Plains Police Department and the Westchester DA’s office on to the program, but they declined to join us or issue a comment. But we are joined by Kenneth Chamberlain, Jr., the son of Kenneth Chamberlain, Sr., the victim, and by two of the family’s attorneys. Mayo Bartlett is the former chief of the Bias Crimes Unit of the Westchester County District Attorney’s office and the former chair of the Westchester County Human Rights Commission. Randolph McLaughlin is a longtime civil rights attorney. He teaches at Pace Law School.
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We grew apart

Daily Kos:


A review of the powerful new movie.

Until you come back to me


Removing options makes Tom a happy fellow

I can only imagine what PA Gov. Corbett would say: “Hey, work on your uppercut! Don’t be such a girl!” Because he’s so good at that tough-love thing:

Philadelphia already doesn’t have enough beds in domestic abuse shelters to serve a glut of demand, andGov. Tom Corbett‘s proposed 20 percent cut to state social services funding will make matters worse still, likely requiring shelters to reduce their services. Then, there’s General Assistance, the $205-per-month, nine-month cash payout that abused women can use to help them get back on their feet after leaving their abusers. As CP’s Daniel Denvir reported, the loss of GA to recovering addicts could make thousands homeless. The impact on abused women is just as terrifying: It could discourage them from leaving their abusers.

Elise Scioscia, strategic initiatives assistant at Women Against Abuse, which operates Philly’s only emergency shelter, says GA is “a source of last resort for a lot of citizens, but especially women and children that are fleeing their homes and don’t have the ability to take resources with them, or have the luxury of time to wait out other resources so they can start rebuilding their lives.”

“[GA is] obviously not enough to live on to provide housing, but it may deter people from leaving. Resources are a big reason people stay with domestic violence perpetrators, so this could prohibit a person from being able to leave a very dangerous situation.” Scioscia says given that their shelter is a 90-day program, and waiting lists for transitional housing are much longer than that, women and children are already vulnerable.

Another Corbett move — rolling human services funding into a single block grant before slashing it by a fifth — has introduced yet another level of uncertainty for organizations that serve women in crisis. “We’ve already trimmed our staff,” Scioscia says. “We’re operating on such a skeletal level that what we’re going to have to cut are services.”


I was hanging out with Russell Brand for a couple of days and I asked him what was the real reason his marriage with Katy Perry broke up. He tells me, but I don’t remember. Something to do with him preferring groupies, I think.

Also: climbing up some steep hill next to a house that’s been landscaped with what look like cobblestones. When I get to the top, I’m surprised to see that there’s no wall on one side and I can see right into the bedroom where the owners are sleeping. “We better get out of here,” I tell my friend.

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