n-a-s-a: Venus at the Edge – Image Credit: JAXA, NASA, Lockheed Martin
Beautiful. I wonder if someone shopped in the orange tones in the first image. Because I’d think NASA’s image would be the authentic one.
Watch Mitt Romney struggle to identify a chocolate doughnut:
His butler must call them something else. That clip is like Mr. Burns having dinner with the Simpsons.
After sitting around with the poorz for a spell, Mittens then had the nerve to say, “[Obama] said the private sector is doing fine. Is he really that out of touch? I think he is defining what it means to be detached and out of touch with the American people.”
Right. Obama’s the one who’s detached and “out of touch” with American people, not the multi-millionaire with five (more?) mansions who has bank accounts in places like the Cayman Islands and Switzerland, and says he likes to fire people, isn’t concerned about the very poor, and thinks corporations are people — definitely not that guy.
And then there’s this: Mitt Romney held a roundtable discussion at an Iowa restaurant but the Des Moines Register reports that security ushered the owners and staff “to a back portion of the restaurant and they were unable to meet the former Massachusetts governor.” Perfect.
WHAT ROMNEY / REPUBLICANS STAND FOR———————————————
“She absolutely should not be president: no way, no how. I’ve watched her on the public stage over the past four years. There has been zero effort — zero — to improve any of her obvious deficiencies.” — Steve Schmidt, remarking on Sarah Palin and the “disastrous political misjudgment” in selecting her as McCain’s running mate, in the NY Times.
Mitt Romney commenting on Obama and firemen, policemen, and teachers: “he wants another stimulus, he wants to hire more government workers. He says we need more fireman, more policeman, more teachers. Did he not get the message of Wisconsin? The American people did. It’s time for us to cut back on government and help the American people.” Romney in Iowa – watch:
Romney economics: fire more government workers — The last three years are the worst on record for public sector job loss, and the 700,000 government jobs that no longer exist remain a large drag on the American economy. [...Here's] yet another indication that Romney is more interested in continuing the GOP’s ideological battle against government instead of curing the ills that are plaguing the American economy. — Think Progress
Just another day in America: a Republican throwing more free money at capitalists – The $1.65 billion tax deal the Corbett administration is negotiating with Shell Oil Co. to locate an ethane processing plant in western Pennsylvania is shaping up to be the biggest such state investment Pennsylvania history… Under the deal, taxpayers would foot the bill for hazardous materials clean up at the western Pennsylvania site, a cost that could easily soar into the tens of millions… on top of the $1.65 billion in tax credits over 25 years starting in 2017, and other sweeteners that come with a tax-free Keystone Opportunity Zone, the state would be picking up the bill to clean up the waste from a zinc smelter site. – Philly.com
This is how America works: lay-off workers and over-compensate CEOs – Verizon Communications announced last week that it would reduce its nationwide workforce by 1 percent, and if enough workers don’t accept the buyouts, it will resort to involuntary layoffs. Verizon paid chief executive Lowell C. McAdam more than $22.5 million in 2011, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of executive compensation. The company has paid its top five executives more than $350 million in the last five years. [...] In 2011, the company’s shareholders saw an 18.8 percent increase in the value of their returns. Workers, however, have not shared in those gains. Verizon eliminated 26,000 jobs over a two-year period in 2008 and 2009 — including 16,000 jobs in 2009 alone — and laid off roughly 13,000 more in 2010. At the same time, Verizon has demanded sizable concessions from workers… – Think Progress
Fox “News” makes you stupid – Fox News host Neil Cavuto rehashed old myths on his show today to argue against a proposed Democratic bill that would raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $10 an hour and require annual increases for inflation. To make his point, Cavuto claimed the higher wage would negatively impact current unemployment levels [...]The Center for Economic and Policy Research found that raising the minimum wage has no “discernible impact” on employment, and in fact, concluded that wage increases are more likely to result in more jobs rather than less. – Media Matters
Mitt Romney will now be getting loads of money from billionaire Foster Friess and his Super PAC, Restore Our Future – the primary backer of the pro-Rick Santorum Super PAC, says he is fully behind Mitt Romney’s efforts to defeat President Barack Obama…. [...] Friess said he met with Romney at a fundraiser in Phoenix recently. ”When you look a guy in the eye you can tell a little of what he’s like and he’s a special guy. He’s got a great family he loves America.” — Buzzfeed
Rand Paul endorsed Mitt Romney — [S]aying your first pick is Ron Paul, but Mitt Romney will do, proves that you stand for absolutely nothing. — JM Ashby
WHAT THE PRESIDENT / DEMOCRATS STAND FOR ————————————
Obama clarifies ‘private sector is doing fine’ remark, responding to the ‘political games’ that started over it – “The economy needs to be strengthened,” Obama told reporters Friday afternoon. “That is why I had a press conference. I believe there are a lot of Americans who are hurting right now. That is what I have been saying for the last year, two years, three years.” Dismissing “political games” around the issue, Obama said Americans should instead focus on choosing a candidate who can articulate a clear solution to the problem. “The key is, for folks, what I am interested in hearing from Romney, is what steps are they willing to take right now that will make an actual difference? And, so far, all we have heard are additional tax cuts to the folks who are doing fine.” – TPM
Obama says the “private sector is doing fine” and the GOP circus pulls into town — As gaffes go, this strikes me as extremely weak tea. The choice of words probably could have been slightly better, but really, to treat this as some kind of breakthrough moment in the campaign is pretty silly. Indeed, what Obama said, in context, is largely correct — compared to the public sector, the private sector really is doing fine. This isn’t complicated. Corporate profits have soared, the stock market is up, and private sector job growth has fueled the recovery entirely on its own. In fact, private sector job growth last year was the second best year we’ve seen since the late 1990s, and 2012 is on track to be even stronger. The public sector, meanwhile, continues to be a drag on the economy, laying off workers and cutting budgets. Comparing the two sectors, there’s nothing shocking about saying one is “fine” and the other isn’t. If the media pushback is that the current growth rates aren’t yet good enough, that’s certainly fair — but I think everyone realizes Obama has said the same thing several thousand times. — Steve Benen
JUST HOW FINE IS THE PRIVATE SECTOR DOING? Corporate / private-sector profits after taxes are at record highs – Andrew Sullivan || Note: this private-sector success isn’t doing much for the nation’s economy, the treasury, or for job creation — but there are several CEOs who have huge bank accounts now.
Obama campaign’s full response to Romney’s “fire more government workers” remarks – ”After years on the campaign trail, Mitt Romney finally revealed his jobs plan today. It is a plan of job elimination, not creation. While the President has put a jobs plan on the table that addresses areas of employment where we need to spur hiring the most right now – keeping police officers on the street and teachers in the classroom, Mitt Romney promised to eliminate even more public sector jobs. Mitt Romney has also said we should ‘send home’ 145,000 federal workers – those workers are mostly military personnel, VA hospital personnel who care for the wounded and Homeland Security workers. Not only has Mitt Romney opposed the President’s plan to create one million jobs, he is actually calling for further job loss in the sector that needs the most urgent boost. While job creation in Massachusetts lagged during Romney’s tenure as Governor despite his promises, calling for job elimination when we’re still digging out from the economic crisis is nothing short of stunning.” — Buzzfeed
Romney Economics: Fewer teachers, fewer firefighters, fewer police officers — Watch:
Chris Matthews goes nuts on ‘idiot Republican argument’ – As the conversation turned to the economy in general, fellow panelist and former Deputy Press Secretary to George W. Bush, Tony Fratto, began to argue that people want the private sector and not the government to, “take the lead.” “It hasn’t. It has failed, and it keeps failing,” Matthews interrupted. As he and Fratto talked over each other, Matthews claimed that the private sector was purposefully withholding its money to keep the economy stagnant and to hurt the president’s reelection campaign. [...] “Okay, here’s the idiot Republican argument,” Matthews said. “If you’d just give them a bigger tax cut than Bush gave them.” [...] “I feel like I’m teaching first grade here,” Matthews said. “What do you think Tom Donohue of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce does for a living representing American business? He gets Republicans elected. Business and the Republican party are the same thing.” – Raw Story
NEW DATA: 6.6 Million Young Adults Insured Thanks To Obamacare – According to a study by the Commonwealth Fund, 6.6 million young adults have signed up for coverage through their parents’ health insurance plans. Under the ACA provision, young people can now stay on their parents’ plans until the age of 26. About half of the 19-to-25 year-olds interviewed for the study reported opting in to their parents’ plans between November 2010 and November 2011. — Think Progress