Romney and Ryan’s super-awesome budget plan will remain a secret until after the election

From ABC’s This Week transcript (h/t: politicususa):

STEPHANOPOULOS: How do you make the math work without eliminating the big deductions that middle-class families rely on?

RYAN: Well, first of all, that — those claims have been pretty discredited. There have been five different studies –

STEPHANOPOULOS: How have they been discredited?

RYAN: — that show — that this — that this plan works. So the analysis you’re citing wasn’t even an analysis of the Romney plan.

But here’s the point I am trying to make here, George. We think the secret to economic growth is lower tax rates for families and successful small businesses by plugging loopholes.

Now the question is, not necessarily what loopholes go, but who gets them. High-income earners use most of the loopholes. That means they can shelter their income from taxation. But if you take those loopholes, those tax shelters away from high-income earners, more of their income is subject to taxation. And that allows us to lower tax rates on everybody — small businesses, families, economic growth.

Here’s where the president wants to take the country. He wants to add a job-killing small-business tax increase on top of the current code, add even more loopholes and deductions to the code, more Washington picking winners and losers. That will crush jobs. You have to remember, George, that most of our small businesses, they pay their taxes as individuals. Most of our jobs come from these successful small businesses. So we’ve shown — look, the Princeton study, the Harvard analysis, they have shown that you can lower tax rates, broaden the tax base, and, yes, there is still room left for broad-based policies that the middle class enjoy so that nobody has a tax increase. We just stop picking winners and losers in the tax code.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But, Congressman, as you know –

RYAN: When Reagan did this, it worked –

STEPHANOPOULOS: — many say it’s difficult –

RYAN: Go ahead, George.

STEPHANOPOULOS: — to accept your word if you’re not going to specify which tax loopholes you’re willing to close. Don’t voters have a right to know which loopholes you’re going to go after?

RYAN: So Mitt Romney and I, based on our experience, think the best way to do this is to show the framework, show the outlines of these plans, and then to work with Congress to do this. That’s how you get things done. The other thing, George, is–

STEPHANOPOULOS: Isn’t that a secret plan?

RYAN: — we don’t want to — no, no. No, no. What we don’t want is a secret plan. What we don’t want to do is cut some backroom deal like ObamaCare, and then hatch (ph) it (ph) to the country.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But why not specify the –

RYAN: We want to do this –

STEPHANOPOULOS: — loopholes now?

RYAN: — out in the open –

STEPHANOPOULOS: Why not say right now –

RYAN: — because we want to do this –

(CROSSTALK)

RYAN: — we want to have this — George, because we want to have this debate in the public. We want to have this debate with Congress. And we want to do this with the consent of the elected representatives of the people, and figure out what loopholes should stay or go and who should or should not get them.

And our priorities are high-income earners should not get these kinds of loopholes. And we should have broad-based policies that go to middle-class taxpayers, to make sure we can advance things that we care about, like charities. But that is a debate we shouldn’t cut in a back room, shouldn’t hatch a secret plan like ObamaCare. We should do it out in the public view where the public can participate.

STEPHANOPOULOS: That’s exactly what I’m suggesting, having it in public before the election so voters can have that information before they make up their minds.

RYAN: We think the best way to get — look, I’ve been in Congress a number of years. I’ve been on the Ways and Means Committee for 12 years. And we think the best way to do this is to get this framework in place, and then negotiate, work with Democrats, work with people across the aisle, have these kinds of hearings, have this conversation to get this objective.

There are really only two ways to look at this refusal to specify which loopholes they plan to do away with:

1) they really have no plan, no idea what they’re going to do — they might as well say they want to ride a unicorn over Rainbow Bridge to Ice Cream Sundae Land and if you vote for them, you can go too. Or,

2) Lyin’ Paul Ryan is asking that you trust him and Etch-a-Sketch. Just trust that they’ll be looking out for YOUR best interests if they’re elected. And pay no attention to the fact that their budget doesn’t add up with any arithmetic in the known universe — or that those tax cuts for the rich (which Romney says are not tax cuts for the rich) will have to be paid for somehow.

For the record, yesterday in an interview with Mitt Romney, David Gregory got no information from Romney either, on the Secret-Awesome Romney Plan or the loopholes he plans to shut down.

Here’s the truth of the matter:


image: thepoliticalfreakshow

Apparently “you people” would rather watch paint dry than watch Lady Romney’s speech

I know I would. Because, really, who wants to hear Marie ANNtoinette talk about things like how she doesn’t feel rich, or how being a stay at home mom, married to a multi-millionaire, was hard work, or how ‘you people’ aren’t getting anymore tax returns out of her and Mitt. In other words, who wants to watch this woman struggle to not call us peasants or The Help? They tell us that Lady Romney is the “softer” side of Mitt but I’m not convinced. In any case, I’d choose the Hawaii Five-O reruns.

NY Times: At 10:30 on Monday night, Ann Romney is scheduled to take the stage at the Republican National Convention, in Act 1 of her husband’s four-day introduction to the nation. But tens of millions of people will not be able to watch. CBS plans instead to show a rerun of “Hawaii Five-O,” its hit police series. Viewers of NBC will see a new episode of “Grimm,” about a homicide detective with the supernatural ability to sense evil. And ABC plans to show “Castle,” a series about a best-selling mystery novelist who helps solve crimes.

Morning Bunker Report: Monday 5.7.2012

WHAT THE REPUBLICAN PARTY STANDS FOR TODAY—————————–—


MITT ROMNEY on the other hand, is proposing the exact opposite. His tax plan would give massive tax cuts to the rich. (The top 0.1% for example, would recieved a $264,000 tax cut.) Meanwhile, in a closed-door fundraiser, Romney revealed he planned to make massive reductions in education spending. He is also proposing cutting funding for infrastructure, including the possible elimination of the Department of Housing and Urban development. – ThinkProgress

THE REPUBLICANS who control the House are using cuts to food aid, health care and social services like Meals on Wheels to protect the Pentagon from a wave of budget cuts come January. The reductions, while controversial, are but a fraction of what Republicans called for in the broader, nonbinding budget plan they passed in March. Totaling a little more than $300 billion over a decade, the new cuts are aimed less at tackling $1 trillion-plus government deficits and more at preventing cuts to troop levels and military modernization. The House Budget Committee meets Monday to officially act on the measure, the product of six separate House panels. It faces a likely floor vote Thursday. — MiamiHerald

FOX NEWS: Murdoch’s most toxic legacy — My complaint is that Fox pretends very hard to be something it is not, and in the process contributes to the corrosive cynicism that has polarized our public discourse. I doubt that people at Fox News really believe their programming is “fair and balanced” — that’s just a slogan for the suckers — but they probably are convinced that what they have created is the conservative counterweight to a media elite long marinated in liberal bias. They believe that they are doing exactly what other serious news organizations do; they just do it for an audience that had been left out before Fox came along. [...] In the digital era of do-it-yourself news consumption, it is easier than ever to assemble an information diet that simply confirms your prejudices. Traditional news organizations, for all their shortcomings, see it as their mission to provide — and test — the information you need to form intelligent opinions. We aim to challenge lazy assumptions. Fox panders to them. — Bill Keller

MICHELE BACHMANN makes shit up on CBS’ Face the Nation – Bachmann: “Actually, if you look at the 2010 elections, women went Republican. They didn’t go Democrat, and they will this time as well, because women are more concerned about the economy and jobs for themselves, for their husbands, for their children, and that’s not happened because Obama’s broken his promises.”— ThinkProgress

  • FORMER VERMONT GOVERNOR HOWARD DEAN responds – “Michele Bachmann has never had much command of the facts and that shows us exactly why… women are terrified of what the Republicans are talking about. They’re talking about basically stripping away their ability to have insurance pay for their birth control pills. Latinos are terrified of the Republicans because they seem to have a total tin ear when it comes to the basic needs of treating people with dignity. And the average American thinks that Mitt Romney doesn’t care about them. Here’s a guy that’s building, during a campaign, a mansion in Malibu with an elevator for his car. He had a Swiss bank account and invested in the Cayman Islands. I don’t think we’ve ever elected a president who’s invested in the Cayman Islands as a tax dodge before. This candidacy is a shipwreck, and for Michele Bachmann to go out there and claim that women are going to vote for Mitt Romney is perfectly ridiculous.” — Raw Story

JOHN MCCAIN STILL (hilariously / sadly?) trying to convince us he chose Palin in 2008 because of her ‘qualifications’ — Speaking about presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney selecting of a vice presidential running mate, McCain said on ABC’s “This Week” that the “primary, absolute, most important aspect is if something happened to him, would that person be well qualified to take that place?” “I happen to believe that was the … primary factor on my decision in 2008,” McCain said, “and I know it will be Mitt’s.” – POLITICO | Seriously. Just STFU, McCain. [image: TBogg]

RON PAUL supporters are causing Mitt Romney major headaches in Nevada and Maine. 

PRESIDENT OBAMA / DEMOCRATS————————————————————

OBAMA CAMP: You’re damn right we take credit for killing bin Laden  – The Obama re-election campaign doesn’t appear fazed by attacks from the right about “politicizing” the killing of Osama bin Laden, and on Sunday remained on offense over what it said was one of the president’s accomplishments. “The president hasn’t been spiking the ball,” said President Obama’s senior campaign adviser David Axelrod on ABC’s This Week. “This was the one-year anniversary. It’s part of his record. And it’s certainly a legitimate part of his record to talk about.” Axelrod said Obama followed through with his promise that catching the al-Qaeda leader would be a top priority. “And then he ordered a mission that was — was, frankly, risky, dangerous,” he said. “Bob Gates said it was one of the most courageous, one of the gutsiest decisions he’s ever seen a president make. And it turned out successfully.” Axelrod was responding to an outside conservative group’s ad — hailed by Karl Rove and widely discussed in the conservative blogosphere — that utilizes ominous music to sharply attack Obama for taking credit for the killing of Bin Laden on the first anniversary last week. “Heroes don’t seek credit,” the ad said. “Heroes don’t politicize their acts of valor.” “Yes, it’s the swift boating of the president,” the leader of the group told Mother Jones. Republicans were particularly peeved that Obama’s campaign commercial about the killing quoted 2007 remarks from his likely opponent Mitt Romney saying it’s “not worth moving heaven and earth spending billions of dollars” to catch bin Laden. — TPM

  • ONE YEAR AGO, President Obama announced the killing of Osama bin Laden, ending a near-decade-long manhunt. Amid U.S. celebrations, it was largely forgotten that the delay in getting the terrorist leader resulted from blunders by George W. Bush and his neocon advisers, Robert Parry wrote in 2011. [...] Though it remains unclear what the long-term consequences of this action will be, Obama’s success – after years of Bush’s failure – does suggest one important lesson: U.S. officials would be well advised to ignore the special pleadings of the neocons who remain highly influential inside Official Washington. The neocons, along with other Bush advisers, exploited the 9/11 tragedy to justify a policy of inserting U.S. military forces into the heart of the Arab world to the detriment of bringing the masterminds of 9/11 to justice. That miscalculation did horrendous damage to both the United States and the people of the Middle East. It also allowed Osama bin Laden to remain at large for more than nine years. — Consortiumnews

LEARNING FROM THE MISTAKES OF OTHERS?

Hollande versus Sarkozy via Flickr FRENCH ELECTIONS: “Mr. Normal” defeats “President of the Rich” — The defeat of the most unpopular French president ever to run for re-election was not simply the result of the global financial crisis or eurozone debt turmoil. It was also down to the intense public dislike of the man seen as “President of the Rich” who had swept to victory in 2007 with a huge mandate to change France. Most French people felt he had failed to deliver his promises, and he was criticised for his ostentatious display of wealth, favouring the rich and leaving behind him more than 2.8 million unemployed. Political analysts said anti-Sarkozyism had become a cultural phenomenon in France. The turnout was high, estimated at around 80%. Hollande is the first Socialist president since Francois Mitterrand’s re-election in 1988. Thousands of cheering supporters, including many intellectuals and arts figures, massed at Paris’s Place de la Bastille, a flashpoint of the 1789 French revolution, where the left celebrated Mitterrand’s first historic victory in 1981. [...] Hollande’s manifesto is based on scrapping Sarkozy’s tax breaks for the rich and levying more from high earners to finance what he deems essential spending, including creating 60,000 posts in France’s under-performing school system. He has pledged to keep the public deficit capped but for his delicate balancing act to work he needs a swift return to growth in France, despite economists warning of over-optimistic official growth forecasts that need to be trimmed. — Raw Story 

  • GREECE ALSO rejects austerity – In a major upset that will not be welcomed by the crisis-plagued country’s eurozone partners, the two forces that had agreed to enact unpopular belt-tightening in return for rescue funds appeared headed for a beating, with none being able to form a government. After nearly 40 years of dominating the Greek political scene, the centre-right New Democracy and socialist Pasok saw support drop dramatically in favour of parties that had virulently opposed the tough austerity dictated by international creditors. — Raw Story
  • FOUR YEARS LATER and apparently the “give rich assholes free money” strategy isn’t work out so well. — Duncan Black
  • THE GERMANS will cling to their fantasies of prosperity through pain, and will insist that continuing with their failed strategy is the only responsible thing to do. But it seems that they will no longer have unquestioning support from the Élysée Palace. And that, believe it or not, means that both the euro and the European project now have a better chance of surviving than they did a few days ago. — Paul Krugman

THE FRENCH ELECTION offers good and bad news for Obama. “For President Obama, the sight of Nicolas Sarkozy, a fellow member of the Presidential class of 2007-2008, being sent packing by French voters will bring mixed feelings…When the campaign turns to questions of economics, what is happening in Europe should provide Obama with plenty of arguments with which to flay his opponents. Republicans say they want to slash government spending and focus on the deficit regardless of the immediate economic situation. The Europeans have carried out that experiment, and, to say the least, it hasn’t turned out very well. From this side of the Atlantic, the American economic recovery seems pretty impressive. After more than three years of economic stagnation, most Europeans would gladly take G.D.P. growth of two-to-three per cent and an unemployment rate of eight per cent.” — John Cassidy in The New Yorker.

WOMEN ARE the richer sex, if by “richer” you mean “making less money.”

I wrote about this subject on Equal Pay Day, before I came across Bryce Covert’s fabulous Nation post “How to Close the Gender Wage Gap In Just Seven Easy* Steps.” (Do read it for serious policy ideas written with verve.) One of her steps: raise the minimum wage. See? Easy! — Are Women the Richer Sex?

The Koch-Arends-Rove Swiftboating Ad on the President was aired nationally, for FREE, by ABC’s This Week

Then the round-table discussed it, as if it were anything but a political hit piece in a campaign season. That’s your liberal media, plebs.

What Everyone Should Know About The Secretive Group Trying To Swift Boat Barack Obama

The group’s leader and sole employee, Joel Arends, told Mother Jones, “Yes, it’s the swift boating of the president.”

3. Arends also tried to Swift Boat Obama in 2008. Arends, under the auspices of a similar group called “Vets for Freedom,” ran an ad accusing Obama of refusing to meet with wounded soldiers from Illinois. [NPR,7/5/08] …

4. Arends worked as a consultant for the Koch Brothers’ Americans for Properity. “Though he doesn’t list it on his public resume, around 2006 Arends went to work for Craig Dewey, the state director of Americans for Prosperity, an advocacy outfit that’s Astroturfed everything from the tea party and the Wisconsin union fight to public-school segregation.” The Koch Brothers and their allies have pledged to spend $100 million to defeat Obama. [Mother Jones, 5/4/12; HuffingtonPost, 2/3/12]

7. Arends helped promote a documentary advocating war with Iran. Arends appeared on a panel in South Dakoa promoting the documentary Iranium, which strongly suggests beginning a war with Iran, in March 2011. [Flier; ThinkProgress, 11/3/11]

8. Veterans for A Strong American is fully endorsed by Karl Rove. The man known as “Bush’s Brain” tweeted his support of their first web ad. [Twitter,5/3/12]

Continue reading…

Because, seriously


image: phroyd

Your lamestream, liberal media

Won’t someone think of Republican white men? Oh, wait…

If you feel like the Sunday morning political talk shows are overrun by Republican politicians, their surrogates and other right-wing spinners, you’re actually right, according to a study by Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR), a media watchdog group. FAIR’s magazine, Extra! tracked the breakdown of guests featured in one-on-one interviews and roundtable discussions on the four main Sunday morning talk shows, ABC’s “This Week,” NBC’s “Meet the Press,” CBS’s “Face the Nation” and “Fox News Sunday” from June 2011 to March 2012. The results skewed heavily Republican, white and male, with only token representation by blacks and Latinos, and virtually no appearances by guests outside of one of the two national political parties.

[...] It’s worth noting, also, that the liberals typically presented on these programs are mostly centrists with very few out-and-out progressives, leading FAIR to quip that “corporate media’s idea of a debate is conservative ideologues matched by centrist-oriented journalists.” Women and persons of color were wildly underrepresented in round tables. Women guests made up a mere 29 percent of panelists. Roundtable guests were 85 percent white, with 11 percent of guests being African-American and 3 percent Latino.

[The Raw Story]

In a diverse nation, with women comprising just over 50% of the population, why do Republican white men dominate our national media — still?

If you’re so inclined to contact the conservative white men who host the Sunday shows that celebrate conservative white men and their many opinions about non-white people and women (among other things), here’s contact information

Hasta la vista, Breitbart!

D’oh! Uninvited from the party.

ABC News pulls plug on Andrew Breitbart.

Dear Mr. Breitbart,

We have spent the past several days trying to make clear to you your limited role as a participant in our digital town hall to be streamed on ABCNews.com and Facebook. The post on your blog last Friday created a widespread impression that you would be analyzing the election on ABC News. We made it as clear as possible as quickly as possible that you had been invited along with numerous others to participate in our digital town hall. Instead of clarifying your role, you posted a blog on Sunday evening in which you continued to claim a bigger role in our coverage. As we are still unable to agree on your role, we feel it best for you not to participate.

Sincerely,

Andrew Morse

h/t LGF

The wingnuts will be in a lather over this — ESPECIALLY over his “1st Amendment constitutional rights”  (to appear on ABC) or some such.  Andrew wins either way: he gets to play victim (their favorite game) and gets to continue ranting about ACORN on Twitter, as if anyone cares.

This is how Republicans would govern: BP 114*

Regarding Joe Barton’s apology to BP this week,  this morning White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel told Jake Tapper on ABC’s This Week:

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USAToday

That’s not a political gaffe. Those were prepared remarks. That is a philosophy,” said Emanuel.

“That is an approach — they see the aggrieved party here as BP, not the fishermen. Remember, this is not just one person. Rand Paul running for Senate in Kentucky. What did he say?

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He said, the way BP was being treated was un-American. Other members of the Republican leadership have come to the defense of BP and attacked the administration for forcing them to set up an escrow account and fund it to the level of $20 billion. These aren’t political gaffes,” Emanuel continued.

“I think what Joe Barton did is remind the American people, in case they forgot, this is how Republicans would govern,” he said.

*BP 114 = 114 members of the Republican Study Committee opposed to the president’s $20-billion escrow fund for oil spill victims.
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[Rawstory]

Tell Republicans “Stop Apologizing to Big Oil”


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You know what: F*ck BP

BP’s contingency plans and cost-cutting decisions

Obviously BP considered a real contingency plan for the Gulf coast a complete joke. And it appears that BP decided not to spend just a little more time and money on the Deepwater Horizon installation. BP went with the more ‘problematic’ (cheaper and faster) design: continuous casing to the bottom of the well — instead of the safer (but more expensive and slower) short string of segmented casing, which are cemented together, one at a time.

How’d that work out for you us, BP?

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1) An AP investigation finds that [BP]‘s contingency plans for both the Gulf and the Deepwater Horizon rig are “riddled with omissions and glaring errors”:

Professor Peter Lutz is listed in BP’s 2009 response plan for a Gulf of Mexico oil spill as a national wildlife expert. He died in 2005. Under the heading “sensitive biological resources,” the plan lists marine mammals including walruses, sea otters, sea lions and seals. None lives anywhere near the Gulf. The names and phone numbers of several Texas A&M University marine life specialists are wrong. So are the numbers for marine mammal stranding network offices in Louisiana and Florida, which are no longer in service.

2) A fascinating industry press piece that damns BP:

Engineers contacted by Technology Review insist that conclusive answers will come with completion of the investigations, but criticize, for example, BP’s decision to install a continuous set of threaded casing pipes from the wellhead down to the bottom of its well. “The only thing I can figure is they must have thought it was a cost-cutting deal,” says Bommer of BP’s well design.

This can be problematic in deep, high-pressure wells for two reasons.

First, it seals off the space between the casing and the bore hole, leaving one blind to leaks that sneak up around the casing pipe (as the BP Deepwater blowout is suspected to have done). Second, the long string gives gas more time to percolate into the well. A preferred alternative in high-pressure deepwater is a “liner” design in which drillers install and then cement in place a short string of casing in the lower reaches of the well before casing the rest of the well. This design enables the driller to watch for leaks while the cement is setting.

“It takes a more time and costs a little more but it’s a much safer way to do it,” says Geoff Kimbrough, vice president for deepwater operations at Houston-based drilling consultancy New Tech Engineering.

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Media black out

Karl Burkart: Gulf ‘media blackout’ triggers journalist fury

CBS, CNN, the New York Times — these are not fringe media outlets. And when Anderson Cooper and Katie Couric complain about press barricades, you know that not only is the rumored media blackout very real, but it is clearly also very serious:

… The restrictions imposed upon journalists [has] been so bad that yesterday both the New York Times and CNN came out strong, calling out the U.S. government for its involvement in interfering with the press:

Journalists struggling to document the impact of the oil rig explosion have repeatedly found themselves turned away from public areas affected by the spill, not only by BP and its contractors, but by local law enforcement, the Coast Guard and government officials.
Today ABC posted a report about harassment of journalists by BP contractors, but Anderson Cooper in his television report made it clear that it was not just BP contractors but federal wildlife officials and national guardsman who were blockading CNN’s media team from filming the oil-soaked birds as they came in off the rescue boats.


This morning I heard a radio interview with documentary filmmaker James Fox who is in the region and who describes how strangely militarized the Gulf operation has become. Any time he approached someone to ask what was going on, he was completely ignored. He managed to get one 15-year-old boy to speak who said ominously, “The media’s not reporting one tenth of what’s going on up there.”

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Karl Burkart’s Twitter:

@greendig

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  • greendig Just received insider leak from Gulf cleanup that is so horrific I almost can’t believe it. Working to confirm.. yesterday from web

(NOTE: Karl still hasn’t posted any information about what he heard yesterday. You wonder if it has anything to do with the munitions dump that’s located near the leak.)

  • greendig Benzene is the biggest threat right now in the Gulf. Respirators can’t filter it and it is absorbed directly thru skin. about 18 hours ago from web
  • greendig You can’t filter benzene with a mask. You have to have a full respirator with a vapor canister. about 7 hours ago from web

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About dispersant & respirators & clean-up crews

Crooks & Liars: (VIDEO) Human rights group: BP discouraging crews from using respirators

RFK Center President Kerry Kennedy traveled to the Gulf Coast to talk to cleanup workers and found that BP was trying to repress the use of safety equipment.

“In all three states that I’ve visited, fishermen said when they went out to work on the cleanup, that if they tried to bring respirators they were told it was unnecessary equipment and would only spread hysteria,” Kennedy told Fox News Friday.

“When I went out with eleven people, we had respirators on and within half an hour, all of our eyes were burning and our throats were closing and we all had headaches,” she explained.

Kennedy was also concerned that BP was refusing to release information about the contents of the dispersant being used.

“They’re basic human rights issues. The right to access of information. BP still will not say what the chemical makeup of the dispersants are so health care officials and victims can know why they’re sick and what’s going on with them,” Kennedy said.

And the health care options for workers who have fallen ill is a problem too.

“One of the things that we were told is that BP would not allow county health officials on to their campus. They finally allowed one nurse. They told workers that if they became sick, the nurse could only give them a Band-Aid or an aspirin. If they really felt sick they had to go to the BP doctors. So BP has completely control over the health care of those workers and what’s happening,” Kennedy told Fox host Eric Bolling.

“And no government health care down there at all?” asked Bolling.

Kennedy found that there was government health care but workers were reluctant to accept it. “The workers are concerned that this is the only job in town and if the go outside what BP tells them to do they might lose the only job they could get,” she said.

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Part of what they don’t want you to see

And then from Boston.com – The Big Picture more of this:

[R]ecent photographs of oil-affected wildlife, people and shorelines around the Gulf of Mexico on this, the 51st day after the initial explosion.

41 photos total at Boston.com link — a few below:
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Oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill pools against the Louisiana coast along Barataria Bay Tuesday, June 8, 2010. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

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Patches of oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill are seen from an underwater vantage, Monday, June 7, 2010, in the Gulf of Mexico south of Venice, Louisiana. (AP Photo/Rich Matthews)
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A brown pelican coated in heavy oil wallows in the surf June 4, 2010 on East Grand Terre Island, Louisiana. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)
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A sea turtle is mired in oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill on Grand Terre Island, Louisiana June 8, 2010. (REUTERS/Lee Celano)
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An exhausted oil-covered brown pelican tries to climb over an oil containment boom along Queen Bess Island Pelican Rookery, 3 miles northeast of Grand Isle, Louisiana June 5, 2010. Wildlife experts are working to rescue birds from the rookery which has been affected by BP’s Gulf of Mexico oil spill, and transporting them to the Fort Jackson Rehabilitation Center. (REUTERS/Sean Gardner)
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Brown Pelicans, covered in oil from BP’s Gulf of Mexico oil spill, huddle together in a cage at the International Bird Rescue Research Center in Buras, Louisiana June 6, 2010. (REUTERS/Lee Celano)
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Oil covered brown pelicans found off the Louisiana coast and affected by the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico wait in a holding pen for cleaning at the Fort Jackson Oiled Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Buras, Louisiana, June 9, 2010. (SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
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Hermit crabs struggle to cross a patch of oil from the the Deepwater Horizon spill on a barrier island near East Grand Terre Island, Louisiana on Sunday, June 6, 2010. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
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A dead young egret covered in oil from the Deepwater Horizon wellhead is turned over to wildlife rescue team near Bird Island in Barataria Bay, Louisiana just off the Gulf of Mexico June 7, 2010. (REUTERS/Jose Luis Magana/Greenpeace)
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Marine reef ecologist Scott Porter works to remove oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill from his hands on Monday, June 7, 2010, in the Gulf of Mexico south of Venice, Louisiana. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

[The Big Picture]

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How far might the oil spread?

I’ve had a lot of people ask me, ‘Will the oil reach Florida?’” says NCAR scientist Synte Peacock, who worked on the study. “Actually, our best knowledge says the scope of this environmental disaster is likely to reach far beyond Florida, with impacts that have yet to be understood.”

[UCAR]

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Bill Maher: “If you are racist, you’re probably a Republican.”

On on ABC Sunday (see VIDEO here):
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Conservative columnist George Will seemed to take Maher’s words personally. “Mr. Maher, just said — if i heard him right — that conservatives basically are racists and like government intrusion only against people that aren’t white,” said Will.

“Let me defend myself,” countered Maher. “I would never say and I have never said, because it’s not true that Republicans, all republicans are racists. That would be silly and wrong. But now days, if you are racist, you’re probably a Republican. And that is quite different,” explained Maher.

But that wasn’t a topic that ABC’s Jake Tapper was willing to cover. “That’s a whole other round table conversation,” Tapper said as he quickly changed the subject.

I don’t agree with Maher on many things but on this statement, I can’t disagree. At all.

via Crooks & Liars

Related:

• Imagine if the Tea Party was black

Imagine that hundreds of black protesters were to descend upon Washington DC and Northern Virginia, just a few miles from the Capitol and White House, armed with AK-47s, assorted handguns, and ammunition. And imagine that some of these protesters —the black protesters — spoke of the need for political revolution, and possibly even armed conflict in the event that laws they didn’t like were enforced by the government? Would these protesters — these black protesters with guns — be seen as brave defenders of the Second Amendment, or would they be viewed by most whites as a danger to the republic? What if they were Arab-Americans? Because, after all, that’s what happened recently when white gun enthusiasts descended upon the nation’s capital, arms in hand, and verbally announced their readiness to make war on the country’s political leaders if the need arose…

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