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Archive for July, 2011

AP/The Huffington Post First Posted: 7/27/11 09:52 PM ET Updated: 7/29/11 10:19 AM ET

Neither the House nor the Senate has a clear path forward for must-pass legislation to allow the government to continue to borrow to pay its bills, putting lawmakers and financial markets alike on edge less than a week before the deadline for heading off the nation’s first-ever default.

Without a deal by Tuesday, the Obama administration has said the government will be unable to pay all its bills, and could miss checks to Social Security recipients, veterans and others who depend on public help. In addition, credit rating agencies could downgrade their assessment of the government’s finances, further unnerving financial markets and perhaps causing interest rates to rise for everyone.

Despite his image as a button-down Republican, House Speaker John Boehner walked to the brink of a dramatic and historic agreement to change the government’s spending habits.

But as he twice approached a $4 trillion deficit-reduction deal with President Barack Obama that would have rocked both parties’ bases, Boehner was reeled back in by his caucus’ conservative wing. The muscular, Tea Party-fueled group not only forced him to abandon a “grand bargain” with Obama, it made him scramble Wednesday to secure the votes for a far more modest deficit-ceiling plan, which in turn is all but doomed in the Senate.

MORE HERE

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Earlier this month, the House Foreign Affairs Committee passed an amendment that would restore and expand the so-called global gag rule, a provision prohibiting foreign organizations receiving U.S. development assistance from using their own funds to perform abortions or provide women with information and referrals for the procedure. The rule, which unlike past variations does […]/p

via Another House Committee To Consider Global Gag Rule, Defunding U.N. Programs To Improve Women’s Health.

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While the rest of the country focuses on the looming deadline to raise the nation’s debt ceiling, House Republicans are taking advantage of their distraction to repeal environmental regulations and pass the most severe environmental budget cuts in 35 years. Republicans are pushing a bill that cuts 7 percent from the Department of Interior budget […]/p

via With Default Seven Days Away, House GOP Fixates On Repealing Environmental Regulations.

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This went out in an email to previous supporters of
Alan Grayson this morning. 

Dear Linus,
I know why House Speaker John Boehner walked out of debt ceiling talks with President Obama on Friday.
It’s because Boehner can’t deliver.
It doesn’t matter what terms the President offers. It’s that simple. Boehner can’t deliver the votes.
The President might as well be negotiating with Tiger Woods; Tiger can’t deliver the votes, either. But at least Tiger has a better swing.
On Friday, the President said, “I think that one of the questions that the Republican Party is going to have to ask itself is, can they say yes to anything? Can they say yes to anything?”
The answer to your question, Mr. President, is no. The national Republican Party can’t even says yes to yes. And Boehner can’t do anything about that.
In May 1935, Pierre Laval, then the Foreign Minister of France, and also the once and future Prime Minister of France, met with Josef Stalin, the Soviet dictator. Laval, a Catholic, urged Stalin to stop persecuting Catholics in the Soviet Union. Stalin asked Laval why it mattered. Laval replied that continued persecution could provoke a quarrel between Stalin and the Pope.
Stalin replied, “The Pope? How many divisions does he have?”
I don’t think that anyone could confuse John Boehner with the Pope, but nevertheless, at this point, President Obama might ask the same question about Boehner. How many divisions does John Boehner have?
Fifty-nine House Republicans abandoned Boehner on the “compromise” appropriations bill. Even though Boehner depicted it to them as a Republican victory on par with, say, the Battle of Stalingrad.
And now, Fox News has reported that between 80 and 120 Republican members of the House will vote against any bill to increase the debt ceiling, no matter what else is in it. You can be sure that Fox News knows what Republicans in Washington are thinking – because Fox News tells them what to think.
So somewhere between a third and a half of all of the Republicans in the House of Representatives are going to vote against increasing the debt ceiling, no matter what Boehner puts in front of them. Boehner is a general with no troops. The coach has no players. The teacher has no students. The chief has no Indians. The bride has no bridesmaids.

That’s why Boehner is always crying.

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By David Fiderer, a lawyer who covers the energy industry for several global banks in New York.  This is an OpEdNews.com repost.

If you wondered whether Murdoch’s various news outlets operate in sync when they misrepresent the facts about climate change, consider the deceitful reporting done by Ben Webster, the Environmental Editor for The Times […]/p

via How Murdoch’s Times of London and Fox News Coordinate Their Deceitful Reporting on Climate Change.

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Pushing Crisis: GOP Cries Wolf on Debt Ceiling in Order to Impose Radical Pro-Rich Agenda

DEMOCRACY NOW  July 22. 2011

President Obama and Republican House Speaker John Boehner are allegedly close to a $3 trillion deficit-reduction package as part of a deal to raise the federal debt ceiling before an Aug. 2 deadline. But the deal is coming under fire from both congressional Democrats and Republicans. Part of it calls for lowering personal and corporate income tax rates, while eliminating or reducing an array of popular tax breaks, such as the deduction for home mortgage interest. Some Democratic lawmakers expressed outrage on Thursday because the Obama-Boehner agreement appears to violate their pledge not to cut Social Security and Medicare benefits, as well as Obama’s promise not to make deep cuts in programs for the poor without extracting some tax concessions from the rich. We’re joined by economist Michael Hudson, president of the Institute for the Study of Long-Term Economic Trends, a Distinguished Research Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City, and author of “Super Imperialism: The Economic Strategy of American Empire.”

Read more or view video at Democracy Now
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He first shot people on the island – afterward he started shooting people in the water”

BBC, 23 July 2011

At least 84 people died when a gunman opened fire at an island youth camp in Norway, hours after a deadly bombing in the capital, Oslo, police say.

Police have charged a 32-year-old Norwegian man over both attacks.

The man dressed as a police officer was arrested on tiny Utoeya island after an hour-long shooting spree. The search for other possible victims continues.

The Oslo bombing killed at least seven. Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg said the attacks were “like a nightmare”.

“Never since the Second World War has our country been hit by a crime on this scale,” he told a news conference in Oslo.

He added that he was due to have been on Utoeya – “a youth paradise turned into a hell” – a few hours after the attack took place. Many others were injured there as well as those who died.

More here…

Norway attacks – latest Live

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