- NO Scott Walker wouldn’t win if a re-election were held today source
» Seven percent. That’s how much Scott Walker would lose by if the Wisconsin gubernatorial election were held today, according to a new Public Policy Poll. What’s surprising is that Walker is losing favor from Republicans as well as Democrats: 10% of Republicans surveyed say they would now vote for Walker’s Democratic opponent, up from 3% last fall. However, though Wisconsin Dems might like to make Walker this year’s Gray Davis, the embattled Governor is immune to a recall until his first year of office is up. And there’s plenty of havoc a Governor can wreak in a year.
- memory Attempting to burnish his non-racist credentials, Haley Barbour recalled a 1962 Martin Luther King speech in his hometown of Yazoo. “He spoke out at the old fairground and it was full of people, black and white,” he said in December.
- reality A heartening tale, but according to Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David Garrow, there’s no record of it actually happening. MLK only came to Yazoo once, in 1966, and didn’t hold a rally when he was there. Whoops!
- candid According to Barbour’s comments, he “paid more attention to the girls than to [Martin Luther] King.” We don’t doubt that, if the speech had happened, this would have been the case, so at least he isn’t being 100% disingenuous. source
- issue Obama and the GOP are at a stalemate with the budget, and there’s a real danger the government might shut down later this week. Great.
- stopgap As a way to prevent that from happening, House Speaker John Boehner came up with an offer to put the government on layaway for two weeks.
- problem The sticking point? Obama wants a full month. Boehner may not be willing to put the budget on layaway for nearly that long. source
- three the number of attack helicopters the Ivory Coast’s president, Laurent Gbagbo, may have received from Belarus recently
- zero the number of helicopters Gbagbo’s government is supposed to be able to get, according to the UN’s 2004 arms embargo on the country; oops source
- 24 hour ultimatum from Gov. Scott Walker to MIA WI Democrats source
» He will not be swayed: Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s attempt to strip the public employee union’s collective bargaining rights got much rougher after he was hung out to dry by Ian Murphy, a blogger who prank called him pretending to be billionaire conservative contributor David Koch. In that call, Walker explained his scheme to get the vote through; to lure Democrats back with a promise of negotiation, only to use procedural rules to then force a vote regardless of whether they participated. Having thus illustrated he has no interest in good faith negotiation, Walker has moved to plan B, political pressure. Walker announced that if the Democrats don’t return to the State Capitol, Wisconsin will miss its chance to refinance it’s debt, which would cost taxpayers $160 million. As it always bears mentioning, the public employee unions have broadly agreed to compromise on Walker’s proposed changes, if he only won’t strip their very right to collective bargaining. Walker says no dice.
Here’s to you, sir: America’s last living man to have served in World War I has died. Frank Buckles, born February 1st, 1901, not only served in the first World War (where he fervently wanted to be on the front lines, but never made it), but also survived three years of imprisonment in a Japanese camp, captured while working for a U.S. shipping company just weeks after the attack on Pearl Harbor. What benefits did he receive for his service to his country? According to him, he received free membership at the YMCA. That’s all. Frank Buckles was 110 years old. source
- old The Affordable Care Act became law, hinged on the concept of an individual mandate. Basically, everybody must buy health insurance, thus lowering the liability costs that the insured must cover for the uninsured. This prompted a slew of legal challenges from the states — mostly ones with Republican governors.
- new President Obama has announced that he supports legislation allowing states to opt out of the individual mandate by 2014, if they can reasonably illustrate that they can keep the same coverage rates. Is a modest dose of health care reform — in truth, more health insurance reform than anything else — being watered down? source
- yes Ousted leader Hosni Mubarak is reportedly still in Egypt even after leaving office, and is hiding out in his residence in Sharm el-Sheikh.
- no Were he to want to leave, he would be unable to, because the country’s attorney general just blocked him from leaving. source
- 50,000 the number of government jobs Sultan Qaboos has promised will be installed in the country
- $390 the amount Oman’s unemployment program would pay job-seekers each month until they find work source
» But it’s not working: While Sultan Qaboos doesn’t appear to be in danger of losing his leadership role, protesters are still unhappy and are pushing for political reforms in the country. “We want new faces in the government and we have a long list of social reforms,” said civil servant Habiba al-Hanay. “We just hope he will hear us and make changes.”
- $700B the amount the U.S. spent on the Troubled Asset Relief Program back in 2008
- $341B the amount it looked like taxpayers were going to lose on the bailout deal back in mid-2009
- $25B the amount it looks like we’ll lose on TARP; this is because we gave the money to banks source
» Not all is rosy in Bailoutville: One of the biggest issues we still face are the dual sinkholes of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which have reportedly cost taxpayers $150 billion and we like to think of as dual sinkholes. And some legislators feel that the effect has set us up for having to bail out unsuccessful companies in the future.
imaginenoheaven said: I just looked on Wikipedia (because I don’t care enough to watch) and HANS ZIMMER’S INCEPTION DIDN’T WIN BEST SCORE?!?!
» We say: But TRENT REZNOR WON. We’re sure that guy has had way more groupies than the other nominees combined. Both of those scores were amazing, honestly.
- kinda Natalie Portman won an Oscar for Best Actress in a role she was destined to win one for.
- moreso Colin Firth won for Best Actor for being really good at stuttering through a role.
- most ”The King’s Speech” won for Best Picture, but we think “The Social Network” wuz robbed.
- one New Mexico woman with a possible case of measles
- three big-city airports she went through last week after leaving London
- 1000’s of people could’ve gotten measles from her (yikes!) source
» We say: We still do that – and lots of it! It’d be a shame if you thought we didn’t based on our posts tonight. (It’s the Oscars!) Most of our non-reblogging stuff is still done that way. In fact, this is one of the benefits of moving to Tumblr … Tumblr is set up in a way that encourages more immediacy, which we were definitely missing from the old site. But that said, we appreciate the feedback.
Always so weird to hear his accent. Also great that Melissa Leo F-bomb jokes are continuing through the evening.
Dude knows how to hide that accent incredibly well.