O'Donnell Fraudulently Accepted Grad Fellowship w/o Bachelor's Degree

We all know that Christine O'Donnell is an extremist and more than a little bit nutty. But apparently she is also guilty of the outright fraud of accepting a graduate fellowship before she graduated college.

See below for the details:

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They Voted to Continue Debate, So Debate Until it Hurts!

The solution to the Republicans' abuse of the filibuster to stop every single bill with which they disagree is very simple. It is the way these things worked all through U.S. history. A "yes" vote on cloture is a vote to cut off debate on a bill and allow a vote on it. A "no" vote is a vote to continue debating. Historically, when cloture vote fails to receive the necessary super-majority (currently 60 votes) this means precisely what it says it means. Debate continues on the bill in question until cloture is called again.

If Republicans want to use the filibuster for every single bill they are welcome to try. But it is political suicide for Democrats to accede to it by simply saying "OK, you win, we don't have the 60 votes, we'll be nice and move on to the next bill." They don't have to move on to the next bill and they must not move on to the next bill.

The filibuster is an important tool for minority parties to act in extraordinary situations to protect their values on matters of the utmost importance to them. But in the entire history of the United States no minority party has ever attempted to use it on everything as Republicans are currently doing.

[More below the fold.]

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Tom Friedman Reversal on Arabs and Democracy?

Remember way back when Tom Friedman shredded liberals because we allegedly don't think Arabs are capable of Democracy?

I'm really sorry. Next time...I promise, I really promise, I'll be a better liberal....I will view the prospect of Arabs forging a democracy as utterly impossible. They're incapable of democracy.

Oh, yeah, it was last week. (Thinkprogress has the audio).

So what's he saying today, six whole days later?

If Arab Muslims can summon the will to protest only against the insults of "the foreigner" but never the injuries inflicted by their own on their own, how can they ever generate a modern society or democracy -- which is all about respecting and protecting minority voices and unorthodox views? And if Sunnis and Shiites can never form a social contract to rule themselves -- and will always require an iron-fisted dictator -- decent government will forever elude them.

As far as I can tell, the only difference between what he wrote today and what he viciously criticized last week is the "if".

As Hunter said last week at Dailykos, "Yep, he gets Pulitzer Prizes for spouting crap like that."

(Cross-posted at Dailykos.)

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Kerry Takes Another Stupid Pill...

It appears that our former presidential nominee really is as stupid as the Republicans say. The latest? According to Lois Romano at the Washington Post:

The senator from Massachusetts and his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, sent out 75,000 Christmas cards with pictures of trees at each season. The Kerrys gushed over their "gratitude for the beauty of these trees and the life they represent."

But it didn't end there.

The card came in an odd-looking envelope, one of those with a return-mail flap and instructions to send it to . . . well, to a recycling company, so "it can be made into new carpet tile."

Carpet tile?

We want a "world without waste . . . where every product either returns safely to the soil or becomes a new product."

So the card instructs: "1. Remove this panel and insert it along with the card into the envelope. 2. Expose adhesive strip and fold the flap over to seal the envelope. 3. Drop this mailer into any U.S. mailbox."

Who else would send a Christmas card with a to-do list?

From a purely environmentalist perspective, this is about the stupidest thing I have ever seen. br>

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It's an ESCALATION, Not a "Surge"

This is right on. The Republicans and Big Media have successfully bamboozzled the Democratic leadership in DC into seemingly going along with this escalation of troops. It's a direct contradiction of the '06 mandate given to the Democrats to stop Bush and get out of Iraq. It is the Democrats that will bear the costs at the polls, if they allow an escalation to happen. Bush and Rove know that, whereas the Democrats, once again, seem like they just wish the war would go away. Jerome

If there's one thing we've learned about Karl Rove's MO it's that his job number one is to start by figuring out the poll-tested term that has the best chance of selling Bush's policies to the public and then job number two is making sure that that term is the one everyone in the media uses. Prominent examples include "social security reform" and "personal accounts" instead of "social security privatization" and "private accounts;""sectarian violence" instead of "civil war;""healthy forests" instead of "clear cuts;" you get the idea.

So I don't mean to chide anyone in particular for using the term "surge," since everyone else is doing it too. But why on earth is everyone calling it a "surge" when in any other combat situation in history the same shift on the ground would be called an "escalation?"

For examples of progressive blogs using the term, and a few closing thoughts, there's more below:

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"The Stakes" is Laugh-Out-Loud Funny. So let's laugh!

The new RNC fear piece that tries to make us piss our pants and vote Republican has rightly been compared to Lyndon Johnson's infamous 1964 "Daisy Ad" in which a little girl counts flower petals, little suspecting that the Russians are about to drop a bomb on her (so whatever you do, don't vote for Goldwater!).

Our response should be modeled after another famous ad from four years later, in which the words "Spiro Agnew for Vice President?" appear on a television screen to a voice-over of hysterical laughter.

The idea that the Republicans can keep us safe from terrorism is laugh-out-loud funny. That's our response. Just a still shot from the asinine RNC ad on a TV screen, laughter, and the words (also from the 1968 Humphrey ad):

"This would be funny
If it weren't so serious..."

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Gathering Data on Campaign Blogs

I'm writing a paper on campaign blogs for the upcoming American Political Science Association meeting, along with Matt Kerbel, who is better known around here as the editor of Get This Party Started (Chris had a chapter in it called "Blogging for Political Change.")

We're at the point of trying to figure out systematically just how prevalent campaign blogs are, and what they are used for. If you have some information on your own state or others, please post it here, including links.

For now we're most interested in U.S. Senate and House races, not state elections.

Thanks, Chris, for the link to Menendez's new blog! What else can anyone tell us?

Of course I'll share our results with MyDD when we're done.


-- Joel Bloom

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Chris Matthews Takes Another Cheap Shot

Chris Matthews took another cheap shot at Democrats on national security last night.

Here's what he said:

"Here we have the president looking like a Democrat in this debate over war and security and the Democrats looking like security-conscious Republicans."

Nice, Chris -- I would have thought that your paycheck from G.E. would be big enough that you wouldn't have to moonlight for the RNC as well.

The transcript is right here (scroll down about half-way to the segment with Bob Shrum (who didn't challenge the cheap shot).

My letter to Matthews is below the fold, along with his e-mail address, in case you want to write him too.

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Andrew Jackson Has Got to Go!! (From the MYDD Masthead)

I like the new site design and have come to enjoy the anticipation of seeing which progressive icon would appear on the upper left hand corner of the screen with the MYDD logo. Just now I was appalled to find the face of Andrew Jackson.

I'm not going to waste a lot of time explaining this; I'll just put it bluntly. Andrew Jackson is to Native Americans as Adolf Hitler is to Jews. Period. "Indian Removal" was the proudest achievement of his presidency.

George Wallace had a lot of progressive policies in the 1960s but I'm guessing I'm never going to see a circa 1963 picture of Wallace  (at the schoolhouse door?) looking down at me from the MYDD home page.

Chris, Jerome, et al.: Please do the right thing and get Andrew Jackson off the masthead!!


Take the poll to choose a replacement. (My apologies if anyone on my list is already there. Also, I'm not familiar with a lot of Native American leaders who are also progressives or I'd have put them down too -- sorry!!)

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*Not* a "Friend of Joe Lieberman" (and a "poll")

A couple weeks ago I started getting e-mails from the Lieberman campaign, addressed to "Friends of Joe Lieberman." Nothing especially noteworthy in them -- just straightforward campaign crap. They must have gotten my name off of the Gore/Lieberman 2000 list or some other Democratic Party List.

Anyway, since I am only slightly happier right now to be thought of as a friend of J.L. as I would be, say, as a friend of Dick Cheney, I sent the following e-mail to the sender:

While I supported Joe in his run for the Vice Presidency (presumably how you got my e-mail), I have been increasingly disgusted by his behavior over the last several years. It seems that the Senator has missed no opportunity to either praise and support George W. Bush, or to criticize his fellow Democrats. Sorry, but there are enough shills for Bush in the Republican Party.

Not only am I no longer a "friend of Joe Lieberman"; I intend to contribute to anyone who challenges him in the primary. Needless to say, please take me off your list!


-- Joel Bloom

Within an hour I had received a one-line e-mail saying that I had been removed from the list.

I imagine that many hundreds in the MyDD Community started getting these e-mails when I did. Because they obviously have someone right on top of this situation who actually looks at the e-mails, I suggest that you don't just click on the link to opt out of the list; send an e-mail as well. Let's send Joe the message that his disloyal behavior has a price!

(Crossposted at DailyKos)


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