Monday, January 20, 2020
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lowkell

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iPad Released at Apple Store in Arlington


As the Washington Post writes regarding a similar event in Bethesda, the people in line this morning were "a special type of technology enthusiast who get the first version of every Apple product: the Apple TV, iPhone, iPod, MacBook. They also enjoy the spectacle of first-day releases." And as Howard Kurtz writes:
The iPad might turn out to be so revolutionary that we'll look back on its unveiling like Alexander Graham Bell speaking to Mr. Watson. Or not. But Apple and its media maestro, Steve Jobs, are once again reaping what amounts to tens of millions of dollars in free publicity.
How Apple does it is part brilliant marketing, part mystery.  Now, we'll see if the iPad turns out to be as revolutionary as some people suggest, or just another fancy-but-overhyped gadget for $500-%800.

Rachel Maddow On Phony ACORN and “Climategate” “Scandals”


As Rachel Maddow says, these supposed "scandals" are complete "bull-pucky", the "unmooring of politics from facts," "the triumph of fake politics -- outrage or advantage gleaned from stuff that's not real." Same thing with the Republicans' supposed "outrage" over recess appointments (Bush did it and Republicans were fine with it then), the individual mandate (it's a Republican idea), terrorism suspects being read their Miranda rights (again, they had no problem with this during the Bush administration), the stimulus (they admit it's working great when they go back to their districts), etc., etc. Watch the video and get the long list of Republican "bull-pucky"; it would all be entertaining if it weren't so damaging.

Colbert and Frum On the Ultimate Republican Heresy: Speaking the Truth


As Chris Bowers writes, [David Frum's] segment was impressive for its lucidity and intellectual honesty, traits that are difficult to find in conservative commentators these days." I couldn't agree more and definitely recommend that you watch this. Plus, as is usually the case with Stephen Colbert, it's very funny. Enjoy!

Susan Mariner Has “A Passion for Politics”


Now that Peter Rousselot is former Arlington County Democratic Committee chair, my new favorite chair has got to be Susan Mariner, of Virginia Beach.  Aside from being a kickass Democrat and progressive, Susan is a spitfire of energy, a superb leader, and a great friend, all of which she demonstrated during the Webb for Senate "ragtag army" days. For more on Susan, see here. Oh, and can someone please draft her to run for Congress? :)

Democrats Turn Economy Around; Best Jobs News Since 2007


As the Washington Post reports, the U.S. economy added 162,000 "non-farm" jobs last month, representing "the biggest one-month jobs gain in the past three years."  And in other good economic news, "[t]he Institute for Supply Management reported that manufacturing activity was up for the eighth consecutive month, with a rate of growth faster than any since July 2004." But wait, there's more:
...Factory orders, particularly in durable goods, are so positive at a 0.6% month-to-month rise that they are beginning to merit the description of  "robust." And retail sales at chain stores were also up 0.6% for the week, which means they are on target to top 3% or more for the whole month compared with last year's dismal record.

Motor vehicle sales were up as well, to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 11.8 million, a vast improvement over February...

And let's not forget the stock market, which just had "its strongest first quarter since 1999." Great news, and we have Democrats - who passed a huge economic recovery package, as well as several other jobs measures, with essentially no Republican support - largely to thank for this (the graph above tells a powerful story). So, where's Eric Cantor and his Party of no this morning to talk down America's economy and to tell us that the economic recovery package passed a year ago "isn't working?"  No comment on the above graph, which shows the economy cratering under a Republican administration and coming back strong with Democrats in charge? Apparently, the cat's got the Republicans' (forked) tongues so far today, but give 'em time, I'm sure they'll think of something bad to say soon enough.

UPDATE: Analysts weigh in.

Virginia GOP Delegate Makes National Fool Of Himself

Virginia Del. Jim Lemunyon (R-67) (pictured here with his right wingnut pal, Frank Wolf), the genius who brought us open enrollment for Fairfax schools, now makes a fool of himself for a national audience.
The U.S. Congress is in a state of serious disrepair and cannot fix itself. It has reached this point over the course of many years-in fact over many decades. Regardless of the party in power, Congress has demonstrated a growing inability to effectively address the major issues of our time, including soaring federal debt and the extension of federal authority to states and localities.

[...]

The remedy is in Article V of the Constitution, which permits a convention to be called for the purpose of proposing constitutional amendments...

...In the Virginia House of Delegates, I introduced a resolution (H.J. 183) calling for a constitutional convention to restrain the national government as well. Requests by two-thirds or 34 states are required for a convention to be called

My god, THIS nutjob is the individual who defeated the superb Chuck Caputo?  What on earth were voters thinking in November 2009?  I mean, seriously, did Virginia go through a period of temporary insanity last November or what to elect people like Jim Lemunyon?  How embarrassing.

If I Were A Global Warming Denier…

This past winter, global warming deniers busted a collective gut laughing about how snow (gasp!) in winter (double gasp!!) meant there was no global warming.  That's right, everyone, there was snow in winter, so global warming was proven to be a hoax! Yeah, they really got all those crazy scientists with all their crazy "facts" with that one. Snow in winter. Hahahahahahahaha. Ha.

Anyway, it's spring now, and if I were a global warming denier, I'd be vewwwwwwy quiet. Why should they be quiet?  Three reasons.

1. It turned out that this past heating season turned out warmer than normal. Today's Washington Post reports that "heating degree days"  ("an index of fuel consumption indicating how many degrees the average temperature fell below 65 for the day") this season are 3,622, compared to a normal of 3,711 and last season's 3,874.  Fewer degree days, of course, mean it's been warmer than normal this heating season. For global warming deniers, that's a big, forehead slapping "d'oh!!!"

2. Yesterday's high temperature at Reagan National Airport was 74 degrees, compared to a normal high of 61 degrees. Today and tomorrow, it's supposed to be 80 degrees, or 19 degrees above normal. This past winter, we had several days where temperatures were on the order of 19 degrees below normal, and global warming deniers were claiming that was proof there was no global warming. Should they now be citing near-record warmth as proof that global warming exists? The answer is, "of course not," because that would be just as assinine as claiming snow in winter disproved global warming. Still, it would be nice if they'd be consistent in their utter illogic.

3. Finally, we have a story which hasn't gotten much attention on Drudge, Glenn, or Rush: "A parliamentary panel investigating allegations that scientists at one of the world's leading climate research centers misrepresented data related to global warming announced Wednesday that it had found no evidence to support that charge."  What's that, you say?  What about that huge! SCANDAL!!! all the global warming deniers - our fine Attorney General, included - were talking about?  You mean it turns out that "nothing in the more than 1,000 stolen e-mail messages or in the ensuing controversy challenged the scientific consensus that 'global warming is happening and that it is induced by human activity?'"  

But, but, but, but, but, but, but, but....GlennRushDrudgeCooch please tell us what to think, make those cognitive dissonance-causing facts go away!!! Yeah, it's sad, but if I were a global warming denier right now, by all rights my head should have just exploded.

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