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Would GU invite Obama to speak?

Obama will deliver a commencement address at Notre Dame. This has some Catholics upset, since some of his views don’t square with Catholic teaching. I recall Planned Parenthood not being allowed at Gonzaga. Then again, McCain has been there, even though he is for the death penalty and the church is against.

What do you think?


Obama and Leno: The First Presidental ‘Sit-Down’…

In addition to being our nation’s first African-American leader, President Barack Obama now has a whole new ‘first’ under his belt. In addition to many other papers and news channels,  The Daily Mail reports that Obama became “the first sitting U.S. president to appear on a late night chat show” after his guest appearance on Jay Leno. Obama appeared on Leno’s show during his campaign, yet he is now crossing new waters as our President. 

This move was not seen by all as pure entertainment. Viewers and critics say Obama has weakened his ‘regal’ reputation as the Leader of the Free World, “dumbing down the presidency,” and also “blurring the line between politics and entertainment.”

Most celebrities jump at these late-night talk shows for a chance to publicize new TV shows, movie debuts, or CD releases, but not Barack: He’ll work to publicize America’s new economic resucue plan. NBC executives are hoping for double the five million usual viewers for the 10-minute segment featuring the President. 

“We don’t look at it as a process of demonstrating the President’s sense of humour,” said White House press spokesman Robert Gibbs.  It’s more of an opportunity “To explain the economic situation we are in.”

Do you think Obama is truly “Americanizing” the Presidental position? Does this stint on Leno make the President appear less professional?


Obama Fingers, anyone?

Good morning, Netizens…

A German fast food company, in hopes of increasing their sales, hit on a new fast food, Obama Fingers with curry sauce. The company, according to the AP piece, says it meant no racist overtones, as it wasn’t aware of any implied racism.

Many sales executives around the world have drawn the same conclusion: What better poster child for hope than US President Barack Obama? There are Obama dolls, Obama T-shirts, Obama soap-on-a-rope. There is even Obama thong underwear.

Sprehe, a German company that has all manner of frozen delicacies for sale, has come up with a new product it states is selling well. The “fingers” in question are tender pieces of chicken breast, coated and fried.

Would you be offended if you encountered “Obama Fingers” in your favorite fast food store?


The art of understatement…

Good morning, Netizens…

Having dabbled briefly in the wild wonderful world of Spokane Police politics, and having spent the better part of two days making certain, in my mind, that former policeman Jay Olsen is a simpering self-serving nincompoop who would shoot someone with drunken and farcical intentions of justice, I will momentarily take a hiatus from casting aspersions in his general direction and examine this morning’s David Horsey cartoon.

The question Horsey asks, as are lots of other people, when is Obama’s economic stimulus package going to work?

After all, we have this rather huge problem called the economic crisis that seems to reinvent itself each new day, getting bigger and bigger. Here is our fearless leader, Obama, hacking away at it with a scimitar, seemingly unperturbed and actually quite calm about it while the rest of us are sweating away our 401k plans, watching our investments trickle on down into insignificance.

Work your magic, Barack Obama! While you’re hacking away at what you perceive the problem to be, the rest of us are sweating and getting more and more worried.


Flip a coin or listen to Obama?

Good morning, Netizens…

In this morning’s David Horsey cartoon we have the first time that David Horsey has violated the air space of Barack Obama’s sacredness. Of course, that isn’t to say that President Obama is sacred, no; rather it speaks to the truth about Obama’s version of our national economic projections. After a week that saw the sacred gods of the Dow Jones diving deep into their inflation-proof bomb shelters, taking refuge in their offshore bank accounts which are now not nearly so safe as they once were, nobody can be convincing when they say they understand the markets.

“I dunno, man, like, let’s flip a coin and see where it’s going next,” one Wall Street marketer says to another.

Then we have Obama, making predictions about the economy. Which do you trust more, Obama’s predictions while wearing rose-colored glasses or the two residents of Wall Street flipping a coin to see where things will end up?


Video: In case you slept in Sunday…

…or went to church, and missed the weekend “talking head shows” here’s the TalkingPointsMemo short version, that highlights Obama’s stylistic differences in cabinet meetings, and Rush Limbaugh’s role in the GOP:

Vetting another cabinet member…

Good morning, Netizens…

Could it be possible, based upon David Horsey’s cartoon this morning, whether President Obama is getting a violent rash each time he seeks to appoint someone to his cabinet? After all, how many cabinet appointees has it been that have run afoul of the IRS thus far? But Gary Locke? Say it isn’t so that the former Governor of our fair state hedged on his taxes? Stranger things have happened, which of course unquestionably delights the Republicans no end.

Ammunition. That’s what they call it. Of course, have they got a blind spot when it comes to fellow Republicans, or is that just my eyesight tricking me again?

It will be interesting, in my opinion, to watch former Governor Gary Locke playing in the Big Game in Washington, DC where you can either score really high scores or fall dismally into the refuse can they call Washington politics.


High Noon: First Dog

In this Feb. 10 file photo, Digit, a 3-year-old Portuguese water dog from Charlotte, N.C., waits to compete during the 133rd annual Westminster Kennel Club dog show at Madison Square Garden in New York. First Lady Michelle Obama has decided that her two girls will get a Portuguese water dog this spring. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, FILE)

Question: I, of course, support the Obamas choice of a Portuguese water dog, for obvious reasons. Do you think the Obamas should have picked another breed? Which one?

Obama before the nation 02/24/2009

Good morning, Netizens…

Did you watch Obama’s entire speech last night?

If you did not, you can read his speech in its entirety at http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2009/feb/24/text-president-barack-obamas-address/

I made it a point, despite being overwhelmed all week long with toxic levels of overwork and stress, to sit through Obama’s speech before Congress, and although I was impressed after a fashion, where he succeeded, in my opinion, was that he engendered a feeling of HOPE that somehow he is going to successfully restore our national economy to some semblance of normalcy, and with it, the world economy.

Lest someone from the Right Wing view on life accuse me of bias, I hereby admit it openly and willingly. I come from the Grey-Bearded generation of folks who once traveled extensively in the Deep South and witnessed first-hand the horrific racial assaults, the imbalances of justice—in short, everything about the racial dividing line that once was there, and I have lived with those memories and shame for decades because I did not get involved. When I look at Barak Obama, President of the United States, and his family I cannot help but well up with tears because this is a new generation of Black Americans who can, as Obama has stated, have equality and hope for the future for all Americans, regardless of their racial makeup. It’s been a long time coming.

I am glad of it. I am proud to live in a time when such things as his Presidency can happen. I simply hope with every bit of my heart he can steer us a course safely through all the trials and tribulations we still have yet to face, beginning with our economy, the warlike stance of Iran, the combined wars of Iraq and Afghanistan and restoring America’s confidence.

Thus, once for all, I admit a certain bias where Obama is involved. That and I am feeling the beginnings of hope. Perhaps we can do this!


Obama in world view?

Good morning, Netizens…

A carnival float showing a flying President Obama followed by a flying Europe is seen during the traditional carnival parade in Duesseldorf, Germany, on Monday. Street spectacles in the carnival strongholds of Duesseldorf, Mainz and Cologne are watched by hundreds of thousands of revelers, marking the highlights in Germany’s carnival season. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
(February 23, 2009)

Oh really? Obama has a halo in the European view of the U.S.? And Europe is following hard on his heels? Something the Germans left out was the role of China in our success and/or failure, wouldn’t you say? At least if my facts are correct, our country is in hock up to their eyes to China and Japan.

Oh, maybe the halo is made in China perhaps. What do you think?


Obama Orders Troops To Afghanistan

President Barack Obama has ordered the first combat deployments of his presidency, saying Tuesday that he had authorized an additional 17,000 U.S. troops “to stabilize a deteriorating situation” in Afghanistan. The new deployments, to begin in May, will increase the size of the U.S. force in Afghanistan by nearly 50 percent, bringing it to 55,000 by mid-summer, along with 32,000 non-U.S. NATO troops. In a statement issued by the White House, Obama said that “urgent attention and swift action” were required because “the Taliban is resurgent in Afghanistan and al-Qaida … threatens America from its safe haven along the Pakistani border”/Washington Post. More here.

Question: Should we be sending more troops into Afghanistan? Or be trying to pull out of Afghanistan and Iraq as soon as possible?

Obama To Sign Stimulus Package

President Barack Obama gets ready to board the Marine One helicopter on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, as he departed for Denver, Colo., where he will sign the economic stimulus bill. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Question: If the stimulus package is such a good thing, why is the market tanking?

Sen. Murray: Stimulus package was best Congress could do, but will take time to work…

The $787 billion economic stimulus bill to be signed tomorrow by President Obama “is not the end of what we need to do,” U.S. Sen. Patty Murray said Monday.

She said the package, which includes billions for transportation, education, unemployment benefits and other help, was the best compromise on a controversial plan. But more remains to be done, she said, to shore up the banking industry and deal with the rapid increase in home foreclosures. Members of Congress have been warned that Obama’s budget proposal, to be released soon, will be a tough budget “in terms of cutbacks,” she said.

Murray was in Olympia Monday, meeting with Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown, House Speaker Frank Chopp and other state officials.

The plan will help state budget writers somewhat. It includes $2 billion in new money for Medicaid, $2 billion for cleanup work at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation, as well as $812 million in state stabilization money, most of it for education.

“That was a significant debate,” Murray said of the stabilization money. Key lawmakers, she said, were concerned about accountability over how that state money gets spent.

“There was a lot of concern among them about sending money out to the state that wasn’t going to be accountable, and having, a year from now, midnight basketball thrown back at us if that’s what the money was spent for,” she said.

And with the state wrestling with a budget shortfall estimated at at least $6 billion, Murray said that state lawmakers will still have tough choices to make. Lawmakers were clearly hoping for more state dollars, she said, but are grateful for the federal help nonetheless.

Some $500 million in new cash for the state’s roads and bridges will be largely up to the state Department of Transportation and local transportation authorities to divide up, she said.

But Murray urged patience, saying the money will take time to work its way into the economy.
“I think my worst fear is people are going to think things are better next Friday,” she said. Some economists, she cautioned, say that the stimulus might not start turning around the economy until the end of the year.

“But the alternative of doing nothing,” she said, “we would see an impact almost immediately.

Obama Caps Exec Bailout Pay

Item: Obama caps executive pay tied to bailout money/AP

More Info: President Barack Obama on Wednesday imposed $500,000 caps on senior executive pay for the most distressed financial institutions receiving federal bailout money, saying Americans are upset with “executives being rewarded for failure.”

Question: Do you support this move by President O? Did he cap exec pay too high/low? Or just right?

White House: what’s in the Obama stimulus plan for WA…

The White House has posted a list of what President Obama’s stimulus plan would mean for Washingtonians.

It doesn’t detail some of the major investments in education and transportation infrastructure that’s being planned. It’s more of a consumer’s-eye-view of the plan.

From it:

Creating or saving 79,700 jobs over the next two years. Jobs created will be in a range of industries from clean energy to health care, with over 90% in the private sector. [Source: White House Estimate based on Romer and Bernstein, “The Job Impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan.” January 9, 2009.]

Providing a making work pay tax cut of up to $1,000 for 2,450,000 workers and their families. The plan will make a down payment on the President’s Making Work Pay tax cut for 95% of workers and their families, designed to pay out immediately into workers’ paychecks. [Source: White House Estimate based on IRS Statistics of Income]

Making 67,000 families eligible for a new American Opportunity Tax Credit to make college affordable. By creating a new $2,500 partially refundable tax credit for four years of college, this plan will give 3.8 million families nationwide – and 67,000 families in Washington – new assistance to put college within their reach. [Source: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities analysis of U.S. Census data]

Offering an additional $100 per month in unemployment insurance benefits to 404,000 workers in Washington who have lost their jobs in this recession, and providing extended unemployment benefits to an additional 44,000 laid-off workers. [Source: National Employment Law Project]

Providing funding sufficient to modernize at least 138 schools in Washington so our children have the labs, classrooms and libraries they need to compete in the 21st century economy. [Source: White House Estimate]

Hat tip: Jerry Cornfield.

I’m Sorry … So, So, So Sorry

Delivering a proper public apology is a skill that, eventually, many powerful figures are forced to learn. Lately, some big names have had to offer their mea culpas—Tom Daschle, whose apology wasn’t enough to move beyond his tax problems, is only the most recent. But why do some apologies exonerate, while others just make a sorry bastard appear even more disingenuous? Here are some that persuaded us—or at least entertained/The Daily Beast.

Related: Obama owns mistake for bad nominee judgment; and: Michael Phelps apologizes for marijuana pipe photo

Question: Why do some public ap-hollow-gies resonate with listeners — and others don’t? 

Dogwalk: Obama Choices Disappointing

Item: How to avoid paying taxes and get a pass? Get appointed to a high-level position in the Obama administration/Dogwalk Musings

More Info: I’m sorry, but owing back taxes amounting to $128,000 is inexcusable. Geitner, as our new Treasury Secretary, was bad enough. Now Daschle. The Senate has given them both a gentleman’s pass. Rather like the passing grades Bush got at Yale and Harvard! And don’t tell me it was an “honest” mistake! Especially Daschle - he helped make the very laws he has chosen to scoff! Plus the fact, no matter how many “people” he has, he has to sign the return. Just like the rest of us. I’m even more disappointed with the idea that Obama has allowed these passes to be given. Poor Bill Richardson must be scratching his head in wonder.

Question: Should the U.S. Senate approve Daschle’s nomination despite the significant amount of money he owes in back taxes?

Ledford: Obama, The Superhero?

Others seem to think his message will inspire people everywhere to work harder and be more compassionate. Worst of all, however, are the countless depictions, both on the Internet and in print, of Obama as a superhero. I have just one humble question for those who depict our new president in this way: really? It wouldn’t bother me if children were drawing pictures of Super Obama, but even then it would prompt a reminder he is only a man. What bothers me is we have intelligent adults drawing these pictures and making these statements. Does this not concern anybody else? If history shows us anything, isn’t it that this sort of adoring, blind trust and devotion for a leader is at best naïve and at worst dangerous?/Benjamin Ledford, UI Argonaut. More here.

Question: Are you concerned that many Americans are simply smitten by the new president?

WND Poll: Obama & Muslims

What do you think of Obama granting his 1st interview to Arab TV?/WorldNetDaily

  • Great way to reach out to the Muslim world
  • Smart gesture, considering the challenges he’s facing in the Islamic world
  • Makes perfect sense, he knows the Middle East is the world’s most dangerous region
  • Demonstrates his willingness to forgive and forget
  • Obama admits he’s related to Muslims, so this is expected

Payment for A Wrong?

In AP US History last week, we were discussing whether or not reparations should be made for slavery. Opinions were varied, and different things came up. Who would pay? Who would be given reparations? Should it be monetary reparations? Or would actions be better for the US? How would you know who should get the money?

Here’s an LA Times story about the unpopularity of the concept.

What are your opinions on this topic? What are your opinions on the questions above?

Me, Thou & Obama

This photo provided by Mark Bernstein of Bethesda, Md., shows Bernstein with Carolyn Weiss of Rockville, Md., at the West front of the U.S. Capitol on the National Mall in Washington Tuesday, during the inauguration ceremony for President Barack Obama. Bernstein chose the setting of Obama’s inauguration to declare his love for Weiss and ask her to marry him. She said yes.  (AP Photo/Courtesy of Mark Bernstein)

Question: Where did your marriage proposal take place?

Barker: Dirk Vs. Barack In 2012?

Kempthorne is testing the waters about a possible run in 2012. Kempthorne has a proven track record of accomplishment as Boise Mayor, U.S. Senator, governor and Interior secretary,” Bogert said. “His record of accomplishment in 23 years of service is something that he can be proud of and Idaho can be proud of,” Bogert said/Rocky Barker, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: What would you think of Dirk Kempthorne running for president in ‘08?

Obama To Sign Gitmo Closure Order

Item: Obama to sign Gitmo closure order today: Relatives of 9/11 victims have said they oppose further delay in trials/CBS

More Info: President Barack Obama plans to sign on Thursday an executive order to close the Guantanamo Bay detention center (AP photo above) within a year and halt military trials of terror suspects held there, the Associated Press reported. The executive order was one of three expected imminently on how to interrogate and prosecute al Qaeda, Taliban or other foreign fighters believed to threaten the United States. Update here.

Question: Will Obama be disrespecting the memory of 9/11 victims if he closes the Guantanamo Bay detention center?

APhoto Of The Day — 1/21/09

 President Barack Obama gets caught in first lady Michelle Obama’s dress train as they dance at the Commander in Chief Ball at the National Building Museum in Washington Tuesday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. Obama’s first misstep as president — Cabbage Boy.
  • 2. Obama is relieved to know that the dress wasn’t blue…and belonged to his wife…so when the dress hangs in his presidential library it’ll be a shoe print, not a goo print, that distinguishes it from all others — Aliasjax.
  • 2. Michelle, you know as well as I do that DFO won’t select any winners for his AP photo cutline contest” — Nic.
  • HM: Sisyphus

Packed Like Sardines For Inauguration

 Kate StormoGipson, 24 of Coeur d’Alene, climbed the tree to see if there was any movement at the front of the long line trying to get through the barricades and witness Barack Obama’s inauguration. (Photo/Justin StormoGipson)

The crowds are huge. We are packed tightly against each other. People trying to cross through what might be the line squeeze through miserably. There is no, zero, crowd control; all the thought seems to have gone into controlling the crowds inside the barricades around the mall. There is absolutely no one to organize the crowds on our side. The question/comment goes through the crowd frequently: Do you all have purple tickets? Everyone does. It defies logic that they would issue too many tickets for the area we’re ticketed for, so we continue on the faith that this line will move and they’ll start getting us in/Inaugaral Afoot (four Sandpointers on foot for the inaugaration). More here.

Question: What will you remember most about the inauguration?

Online Poll: Obama & The Future

Did Obama change your perspective on the country’s future Tuesday?/Idaho Statesman.

  1. No, still optimistic
  2. No, still pessimistic
  3. Yes, now optimistic
  4. Yes, now pessimistic
  5. No opinion

K-Mann: Time To Put Up Or Shut Up

Kage Mann: Thank God,the festivities are over and Obama doesn’t have to speak anymore. He has been talking for two years now,but now it’s time to put up or shut-up. No more rhetoric,but action. Let’s see what he will do in crunch time, esp. when the chips are down. BTW, what’s up with one of the shortest speeches in presidential history?

Question: Are you ready for Obama to put shoe leather to the rhetoric?

TUBOB: Winauguration!

What I mean by remarkable is following the swearing in, Obama will begin glowing a sapphire blue with a ruby tinged aura and laser beams will shoot out of his eyeballs, except they won’t be death rays they will be happy golden loverays infused with silvery motes of mica flakes dancing in the happy beams and as he scans the crowd and his happy eye beams touch each and every one of us, even those of us watching at home, because he will also glance at the tv cams, we will instantly become better persons, persons willing to stop bitching about everything and roll up our sleeves and do something to make the country better, to restore and repair the damage our 8 years of complicity to the snarling hell dogs unleashed by the prior president who will now remain nameless befitting his soulless status/TUBOB. More here.

Question: Have we entered the new millennial with Barack H. Obama spreading love and benevolence throughout the country and world, as TUBOB contends? Or the Great Tribulation, as some Obamaphobes might maintain?

A Day of Nonpartisanship?

Despite the generally festive and nonpartisan mood in Washington today, one Texas senator is in a business-as-usual mood. Hillary Clinton will not be sworn in as Obama’s Secretary of State because one Republican senator, John Cornyn, has indicated that he plans block a move to confirm Clinton’s nomination. A spokesperson for Harry Reid, the Senate Majority Leader, predicted that Clinton will be nearly-unanimously confirmed one day late, on Wednesday.

Neither Cornyn nor his office have commented thus far on the move. Story here.

Petty politics, or do you agree with Cornyn’s objection?



SR Blogs: Wanna Flag From Today?

In honor of the inauguration of President Obama, Washington state’s Secretary of State is selling U.S. flags that are being flown at the state capitol today. (Yup, there’s some person who’s going to be busy hauling flags up and down all day. Really.) You can buy the 3-foot by 5-foot flags for $14 if you pick them up at the Secretary of State’s front desk, or they’ll mail you one for $17.25. “People just snatch them up,” said Dave Ammons, a spokesman for Secretary of State Sam Reed. Each comes with a certificate, state seal, and Reed’s signature. Any proceeds go to thestate capitol historical furnishings fund./Rich Roesler, Eye On Olympia. More here.