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Saturday, January 08, 2011

Stories to Watch: 1/8/11

Made burgers last night. It was OK, but they just aren't the same out of a skillet. If you read about some poor guy who froze to death in Madison, Wisconsin while grilling burgers in his backyard in the near future, then know I couldn't take it any more. Now here's the news...

The Justice Department goes to extremes in trying to build a case against Julian Assange a WikiLeaks; demands the twitter records -- i.e., private messages -- of an Icelandic member of parliament. "The justice department has gone completely over the top," says targeted MP Birgitta Jonsdottir. "...It's not just about my information. It's a warning for anyone who had anything to do with WikiLeaks. It is completely unacceptable for the US justice department to flex its muscles like this. I am lucky, I'm a representative in parliament. But what of other people? It's my duty to do whatever I can to stop this abuse."

Wyoming legislators want to make it a felony to implement provisions of the healthcare reform law. No chance of it surviving a court challenge, since it's a clear violation of the Supremacy Clause of the US Constitution -- the same Constitution these "patriots" claim to love so much. Ezra Klein sees it as evidence of dangerous fearmongering run amok.

Blue Dogs side with the GOP in healthcare reform repeal vote. Luckily, their version of "bipartisanship" guaranteed that few survived the elections. Note to future would-be "centrists": finger-in-the-wind is a shitty -- and cowardly -- way to govern and it'll cost you in the end.

Passport applications will no longer ask the names of "mother" and "father." Instead, you'll be asked to supply "parent one" and -- assuming there is one -- "parent two." Needless to say, this is the worst thing ever.

In a sign that the Obama administration has screwed up big time, Mitch McConnell is delighted with new staffers at the White House.

The Obama-GOP tax compromise kicks in today. In making this announcement, President Obama avoids mentioning the top-end tax cuts needlessly ballooning the deficit. In a more admirable move, Obama tells the GOP to knock it off with the grandstanding, symbolic crap and get some actual work done.

Remember, all Muslims are violent Islamic extremists. If we let the facts get in the way of that belief, then the terr'ists win.

Finally, Lindsey Graham warns that failing to raise the debt ceiling would cause "collapse and calamity around the world." He's not letting reality affect his decisions, though.

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