Yesterday, Fox & Friends second stringer Ainsley Earhardt introduced the bill board ladies as “a group of women who want to keep Christ in Christmas” by urging people to drop “happy holdays.” She emphatically said that “to date they have raised thousands of dollars” for eight billboards but say “their fight is far from over.”
Millions of Americans are unemployed and those forced to apply for food stamps is at an all time high – another conservative and Bush administration legacy, yet these groups are rising thousands to fight the imaginary war of Christmas. The new conservatives seem to have the same priorities as the old conservatives. Conspiracy theories, paranoia, eliminationism and selfishness are ahead of helping their fellow citizens. It little wonder they have this little trumped up war every year, conservatives are as good at fighting imaginary ones as they are at fighting real ones, Senate report: Bin Laden was ‘within our grasp’
The report asserts that the failure to kill or capture bin Laden at his most vulnerable in December 2001 has had lasting consequences beyond the fate of one man. Bin Laden’s escape laid the foundation for today’s reinvigorated Afghan insurgency and inflamed the internal strife now endangering Pakistan, it says.
[ ]…More pointedly, it seeks to affix a measure of blame for the state of the war today on military leaders under former president George W. Bush, specifically Donald H. Rumsfeld as defense secretary and his top military commander, Tommy Franks.
“Removing the al-Qaida leader from the battlefield eight years ago would not have eliminated the worldwide extremist threat,” the report says. “But the decisions that opened the door for his escape to Pakistan allowed bin Laden to emerge as a potent symbolic figure who continues to attract a steady flow of money and inspire fanatics worldwide. The failure to finish the job represents a lost opportunity that forever altered the course of the conflict in Afghanistan and the future of international terrorism.”
The report states categorically that bin Laden was hiding in Tora Bora when the U.S. had the means to mount a rapid assault with several thousand troops at least. It says that a review of existing literature, unclassified government records and interviews with central participants “removes any lingering doubts and makes it clear that Osama bin Laden was within our grasp at Tora Bora.”
If there is a war on Christmas, the people waging it have nothing to fear with conservatives leading the charge.
Maurice Clemmons, the man accused of murdering four police officers was apparently given clemency by former Republican governor and currently a bastion of conservative punditry at Faux News Mike Huckabee. Without out knowing the details its hard to say whether Huckabee was correct in giving Clemmons clemency ( his previous troubles were mostly about burglary and aggravated assault ( he was 17 at the time – and had a history of mentally erratic behavior). The story does bring to light that Huckabee also previously came to the aid of a convicted rapist/murderer. In the later case it appears that Huckabee was pressured by right-wing Christian groups. That four police officers were murdered is obviously cause for a moment of reflection for them and their families. Another is that sometimes sentencing guidelines that declare teenagers beyond hope and condemned to prison for life might, accounting for circumstances, be excessive. Clemmons is now the poster boy for sweeping arguments against excessive sentencing for teens.
I sympathize, but Paul Krugman is probably pissing in the wind, The Jobs Imperative
How is a jobs program different from a second stimulus? It’s a matter of priorities. The 2009 Obama stimulus bill was focused on restoring economic growth. It was, in effect, based on the belief that if you build G.D.P., the jobs will come. That strategy might have worked if the stimulus had been big enough — but it wasn’t. And as a matter of political reality, it’s hard to see how the administration could pass a second stimulus big enough to make up for the original shortfall.
So our best hope now is for a somewhat cheaper program that generates more jobs for the buck. Such a program should shy away from measures, like general tax cuts, that at best lead only indirectly to job creation, with many possible disconnects along the way. Instead, it should consist of measures that more or less directly save or add jobs.
One such measure would be another round of aid to beleaguered state and local governments, which have seen their tax receipts plunge and which, unlike the federal government, can’t borrow to cover a temporary shortfall. More aid would help avoid both a drastic worsening of public services (especially education) and the elimination of hundreds of thousands of jobs.
Meanwhile, the federal government could provide jobs by … providing jobs. It’s time for at least a small-scale version of the New Deal’s Works Progress Administration, one that would offer relatively low-paying (but much better than nothing) public-service employment. There would be accusations that the government was creating make-work jobs, but the W.P.A. left many solid achievements in its wake.
They’re difficult to forget so I could not honestly say forget health-care reform, Afghanistan or the continued failure of so many small banks, but in 2012 those things will seem like small potatoes compared to the number of jobless Americans. If the Obama administration or Congress does not get something like a WPA started (we do not need an actual WPA – people could be hired through the Department of the Interior or Education) they can start packing in 2011.