DAYEE PICTURE: Walruses in Svalbard, Norway. From the Daily Mail of the UK.
"What this means is that the new leadership is again harping on an underlying theme in the propaganda of the People’s Republic – China as a victim of foreign countries. But, at the same time, the Chinese government has been silent on the Chinese people as victims of the Communist Party."
Gun Control? Maybe These Kids are onto Something (Leonard Pitts) from the Miami Herald
"Young people are not exactly renowned for their judgment. We are, after all, talking about an age group that has to be told it is a bad idea to text while doing 70. Or drink alcohol ’til it spews from your nostrils. Or wear a T-shirt and flip-flops to interview for the office job. So no, judgment is not their forte. Yet even they have enough sense to steer clear of the gun dorm."
Why Republicans Can’t Make a Deal on the ‘Fiscal Cliff’ from the Reid Report
"What matters to Republicans is rich people. The rich people who give money to their campaigns, to be very specific about it. ... Big GOP donors are very, very conservative. In fact, some of them are kooky, conspiracy minded, and radical. ... Big GOP donors no longer feel beholden to the Republican Party as a channel for their money and influence."
Lack of Rank-and-File House GOP Backlash Hints at Softening on Taxes (Russell Berman) from The Hill
"The lack of immediate backlash within the conference is a key early sign for Boehner, who has made intraparty unity a priority as he seeks the strongest possible hand in negotiations over the “fiscal cliff” with President Obama. "
The key words here are "within the conference..." There is LOTS of backlash from the GOP grassroots and the real powerbrokers in the party: Rush, Sean, Erik, and among the hard right beyond-the-beltway punditry.
The Fiscal Cliff Is the Y2K of 2012 (Frank Rich) from New York Magazine
"... is media hype, a desperate effort to drum up a drama to keep viewers and readers tuned in now that the election is over. It’s a Road Runner cartoon, Beltway-edition. And it’s going to end with a whimper like the similarly apocalyptic, now long-forgotten Y2K scare of the turn of the millennium."
Obama: We Are Not Going To Negotiate With The Debt Ceiling from Talking Points Memo
"President Obama on Wednesday described Republicans who are considering holding the debt ceiling vote hostage in additional negotiations after the so-called fiscal cliff in January as partaking in a "bad strategy for America." "I will not play that game," Obama told business leaders at a quarterly meeting of the Business Roundtable in Washington. "We are not going to play that game next year. We've got to break that habit before it starts.""
Why Obama Won’t Negotiate with GOP Over Debt Ceiling (Greg Sargent) from the Washington Post
"If this happens, Obama will refuse to negotiate over the debt limit, just as he’s refusing to negotiate over tax rates on the rich. The message will be clear: We’re not talking, if the debt ceiling — and the nation’s economy — have a gun pointed at their head."
Conservatives vs. the GOP (John Fund) from National Review
"Republicans in Congress are warned that they will lose their base if they vote for tax hikes. ... “Reince, it pains me to say this, but if the Republican Party breaks its word to the American people and goes along with President Obama with tax increases, it will have betrayed conservatives for the final time,”"
Republicans Wave the White Flag (Dana Milbank) from the Washington Post
"The question isn’t whether GOP will cave on taxes, but how and when."
The Conservative Learning Curve (E.J. Dionne) from the Washington Post
"Over the long run, the most important impact of an election is not on the winning party but on the loser. Winners feel confirmed in staying the course they’re on. Losing parties — or, at least, the ones intent on winning again someday — are moved to figure out what they did wrong and how they must change."
Betcha $9.99 that this Guy Could Seriously Muck up the Georgia Senate Race (David Nir) from Daily Kos
"...the same people prefer "somebody more conservative"—aka Republican Jesus—as the party's 2014 Senate nominee. Of course, the problem is always finding that savior, but would you believe that the person who most resembles Republican Jesus is ... Herman Cain? Yep, it's true!"
How The Voter ID Crusade Backfired On Republicans from Talking Points Memo
"Republicans in legislatures across the country were on a quest to impose restrictions on voting, chasing the ghost of in-person voter fraud. Those Republican legislators flipped a switch with the African American vote, Hardy said, rekindling whatever enthusiasm had waned after 2008’s historic Obama win."
Republicans Not Handling Election Results Well from Public Policy Polling
"PPP's first post election national poll finds that Republicans are taking the results pretty hard...and also declining in numbers. ... One reason that such a high percentage of Republicans are holding what could be seen as extreme views is that their numbers are declining. Our final poll before the election, which hit the final outcome almost on the head, found 39% of voters identifying themselves as Democrats and 37% as Republicans. Since the election we've seen a 5 point increase in Democratic
identification to 44%, and a 5 point decrease in Republican identification to 32%."
The Secrets of the 2012 Campaign (John Dickerson) from Slate
"Obama and Romney’s top strategists reveal their hidden hopes, fears, and a few lessons from this year’s presidential contest."
Democrats to Obamaland: Share your Data from Politico
"The hottest property to emerge from Barack Obama’s lopsided victory over Mitt Romney is not the president’s much lauded campaign team. Nor is it the shrewd turnout operation that catapulted him to victory. It is something far more valuable that’s being guarded as zealously as the Pentagon: Obama’s unprecedented database of an estimated 16 million voters, volunteers and donors, which gave the Democrat an indisputable edge in November."
Republicans Are Running Scared--From Each Other (Josh Kraushaar) from National Journal
"In 2014, knock-down, drag-out primaries could jeopardize what should be a good year for GOP Senate candidates."
EXOTIC LOCATION NUGGET!!
The magic of Madagascar: Staggering Landscapes and Breathtaking Natural Beauty in the World's Most Unique Ecosystem from the Daily Mail [of the UK]
"This breathtaking collection of photographs documents the staggering natural beauty and scenery of the island of Madagascar home to a unique collection of animals found nowhere else in the world."