Archive of Articles for December, 2009

Friday Talking Points [105] -- One Bad Week

[ Posted Friday, December 18th, 2009 – 18:12 UTC ]

Al Franken provided the sole moment of humor this week, when he smacked down Joe Lieberman, and for that he deserves an Honorable Mention. Franken, sitting in as the guy with the gavel running things in the Senate, was asked by Joe Lieberman for a few more moments (over his 10-minute limit) to speak, by "unanimous consent." Franken, who later said he was just doing what he was told and keeping a strict 10-minute limit, told Lieberman most emphatically "No," and that he -- in the role of senator -- objected, and Lieberman needed to, essentially (Franken was not this blatant), "sit down and shut up."

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From The Archives -- Mr. Claus Goes To Washington

[ Posted Thursday, December 17th, 2009 – 18:16 UTC ]

[Program Note: This column is a repeat of last year's Christmas column, which originally ran on Christmas Eve, 2008. I apologize for the re-run, but I'm still swamped with upgrade work, to make a better and more secure for you to enjoy next year, so I hope you'll forgive me. Oh, and (ahem) it ends with a call for last year's donation drive. We're not doing a full-on donation drive this year (although we do have Netroots Nation to attend next year), but if you're full of holiday spirit and are so inclined, the donation button to the right should still work (for both PayPal accounts and major credit cards). Anyway, enjoy this peek into where we all were last year at this time, and regular columns will resume with tomorrow's Friday Talking Points.]

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It Didn't Have To Be This Way

[ Posted Wednesday, December 16th, 2009 – 19:00 UTC ]

It didn't have to be this way. It really didn't.
The epic struggle for healthcare reform is entering its final days in Washington. And the Democrats (being Democrats) have managed to snatch political suicide from the jaws of legislative victory. But, I keep thinking, it didn't have to be this way. If [...]

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Pin Obama Down

[ Posted Tuesday, December 15th, 2009 – 18:02 UTC ]

So today I offer up the questions I would ask, were I interviewing President Obama in the next week or so. Because you never know what media outlet he'll pop up in next.

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There Ought To Be A Law

[ Posted Monday, December 14th, 2009 – 18:27 UTC ]

So I throw it open to everyone. If you could write a bill for Congress to consider, on a mundane or commonsense issue to citizens everywhere, what would you propose? No idea too small... no idea too silly... just toss it out there for discussion.

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Friday Talking Points [104] -- Washington Frenzy

[ Posted Friday, December 11th, 2009 – 18:07 UTC ]

OK, sarcasm (and crocodile tears) aside, let's quickly move on to politics. The past week in Washington has seen somewhat of a frenzy of activity. So many things are getting done (or at least getting talked about) that it's almost impossible to keep track of everything. Whether this is a good thing or not depends on your point of view, of course.

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President Obama's Nobel Acceptance Speech

[ Posted Thursday, December 10th, 2009 – 17:43 UTC ]

Below is the transcript of the speech President Obama's gave accepting the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, Norway. It is an interesting speech, and not exactly the normal remarks given by past recipients. Obama notes the irony of accepting an award for peace just after announcing he will escalate a war. But rather than comment upon Obama's words, we thought it would be better to just present an unedited transcript for you to read today.

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Assessing Reid's Healthcare Compromise

[ Posted Wednesday, December 9th, 2009 – 17:15 UTC ]

News broke last night that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has what he thinks is a viable compromise piece of healthcare reform legislation, which he thinks could garner the 60 votes he needs to pass the Senate. Unfortunately, details of this compromise have not been officially announced, and Harry is waiting to get numbers from the Congressional Budget Office (C.B.O.) before releasing the text. So, while an accurate assessment of the bill is impossible at this point (since it's like trying to nail smoke to a wall), we can at least begin to look at what is taking shape, based solely on the rumors and leaks in the press so far.

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Program Note

[ Posted Tuesday, December 8th, 2009 – 14:31 UTC ]

Over the next few weeks here at, we will be going through a period of upgrades and system maintenance. This (hopefully) will not require a major redesign of the site layout, so after we're done you should see a site very similar to what you are looking at now. We will try [...]

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Random 2010 Thoughts

[ Posted Monday, December 7th, 2009 – 18:42 UTC ]

As 2009 draws to a close, the politically wonky among us begin to turn our eyes towards the 2010 election landscape. Congressional midterm elections will be taking place less than a year from now, meaning (while some might consider it laughably premature) it is time to pay some attention to the upcoming races.

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