Tuesday, February 19, 2013

News Nuggets 1186

DAYEE PICTURE: A Blue Poison Dart Frog from Surinam.  From the Daily Mail of the UK.

How Liberals Became ‘Real Americans’ (Timothy Noah) from the New Republic 
"The lingering taboo is anthropological rather than ideological. Liberals are judged inauthentic because (at least according to stereotype) they live in cities, avoid church, and don’t own guns; they consequently feel the need to describe themselves using other terms."

When Republicans were Problem-Solvers (E.J. Dionne Jr.) from the Washington Post
"Despite the abuse of the rules on Chuck Hagel’s confirmation, you sense that Republicans such as Thompson and Alexander (there are many others) are exasperated with the view that the only point of seeking public office is to shrink government. But it will take considerable courage for such Republicans to move their party back to a time when conservatives and progressives did not have to disagree on everything — when causes such as helping 4-year-olds to learn and thrive could encourage politicians to lay down their arms at least momentarily."

Why the Hagel Filibuster is a Serious Mistake for Republicans Good Job, GOP. You Just Handed Obama a Public-Relations Gift (Tom Rogan) from The Week
From a conservative pundit.
"... for Republicans, this filibuster was a pointless act of self-destruction. Nearly everyone on Capitol Hill agrees that within a couple of weeks, Chuck Hagel will be in the secretary's office at the Pentagon. This filibuster didn't change anything — except to gift Democrats a timely and almost unbelievably useful PR coup."

In GOP Civil War, No Easy Answers (Stuart Rothenberg) from Roll Call
"The truth is that while most insiders agree about the problem, nobody has come up with an easy solution. And that’s because there isn’t a quick fix."

If Only They were Trying to Find Good Policy (Jonathan Bernstein) from the Washington Post
"The problem with Republicans today on public policy isn’t that they’re stuck in the 1980s; it’s that they’ve given up entirely. More often than not, what passes for Republican “policy” is just symbolic, not substantive."

Why Democrats Think They Can Retake the House in 2014 (Alex Roarty) from the National Journal
"Israel's memo, sent to National Journal by a Democratic aide, boiled down to one theme: Republicans and their tea party allies are deeply unpopular with the public, which means that Democrats -- with President Obama's help -- should be able to overcome a congressional map that leans red.
Democrats, who won a net of eight seats last year, need to win another 17 more to retake the majority."

Obama’s Immigration Plan May be a Decoy (Eugene Robinson) from the Washington Post
"Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said the White House proposal — which hasn’t actually been proposed — shows that Obama is “really not serious” about reform. Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said Obama’s plan “tells us that he’s looking for a partisan advantage and not a bipartisan solution.” Translation: Things are looking up!"

College Essays Make Kids Stupid and Selfish (Naomi Schaefer Riley) from Bloomberg News Service
"The common application, which is now accepted by more than 500 colleges, is the best example of how the admissions process has become an exercise in encouraging 17-year-olds’ narcissism."

Fox News Ratings Hit 12-Year Low from the Denver Post
"MSNBC was quick to underscore the point. According to a release from MSNBC, the network saw year-to-year growth while “FOX News Channel Has Worst M-Su Primetime Performance Since August 2001, Lowest Total Day Since August 2008.”"

For the Briefest Time, President Garfield was an Inspiration from the Editorial Board of the Washington Post
"James A. Garfield, who may have been the best president we never had, or hardly had. Garfield was fatally wounded only months into his presidency by a deranged office seeker with a handgun, and the memorials to him — statuary, parks, streets, schools here in Washington and elsewhere — reflect not just the nation’s grief over his martyrdom but also a genuine admiration felt across a great part of the country and especially among its most downtrodden."

C-SPAN’s Series on First Ladies Begins, but Some Legacies are Still Forming from the Washington Post
"Unlike the dozens of first ladies whose names and stories have been forgotten through the ages (ever had a dinner conversation about Anna Harrison or Jane Pierce?) the nation’s first African American first lady will surely be remembered in history books for a racial barrier broken. But what else will future generations find remarkable?"

Socrates. Hope For Paws & Bill Foundation from Hope-for-Paws
"A great way to start the week is with a new rescue video. The song in this video was written and performed by Derek Luttrell who created the song especially for Hope For Paws - Animal Rescue."

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