Daily Archives: September 15, 2009

Real-life ‘Norma Rae’ dies of cancer after her health insurance refused to cover her medications

ThinkProgress—Crystal Lee Sutton, whose courageous efforts organizing Southern textile mills inspired the award-winning 1979 film “Norma Rae,” passed away on Friday after a long battle with brain cancer. Sutton’s story is particularly tragic because after fighting her whole life for rights of working Americans, her health insurance wouldn’t cover the medications she needed:

She went two months without possible life-saving medications because her insurance wouldn’t cover it, another example of abusing the working poor, she said.

“How in the world can it take so long to find out (whether they would cover the medicine or not) when it could be a matter of life or death,” she said. “It is almost like, in a way, committing murder.”

Although Sutton eventually received the medication, the cancer had already taken a toll on her.

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Filed under Media and Entertainment, Medicine

CARTER: RACE PLAYS ROLE IN OBAMA DISLIKE

posted by GeoT


Pres. Jimmy Carter

Pres. Jimmy Carter


From NBC’s Mark Murray
In an interview with NBC’s Brian Williams, former Democratic President Jimmy Carter attributed much of the conservative opposition that President Obama is receiving to the issue of race.

“I think an overwhelming portion of the intensely demonstrated animosity toward President Barack Obama is based on the fact that he is a black man,” Carter said. “I live in the South, and I’ve seen the South come a long way, and I’ve seen the rest of the country that share the South’s attitude toward minority groups at that time, particularly African Americans.”

Seen at the DC 9/12 Rally

Seen at the DC 9/12 Rally

Carter continued, “And that racism inclination still exists. And I think it’s bubbled up to the surface because of the belief among many white people, not just in the South but around the country, that African-Americans are not qualified to lead this great country. It’s an abominable circumstance, and it grieves me and concerns me very deeply.”

Jimmy, you’re stating the very obvious…
MSNBC.com

**44-update**
Elephant in the room: Race also present in rebuke of Wilson

“It feels very O.J-ish,” said Kathryn Russell-Brown, the director of the Center for the Study of Race and Race Relations at the University of Florida, referring to the racial divide in public opinion over the guilt or innocence of former football star O.J. Simpson for the 1994 murder of his white wife. Surveys found that white majorities thought Simpson guilty was and blacks didn’t. Simpson was acquitted in 1995. “It’s deja vu all over again. People have staked out their ground: ‘It’s about race; no it’s not about race.'”

Rep. David Scott, D-Ga., also black, said that the racial undercurrent against Obama has been the least discussed aspect of his presidency.

Scott said he experienced some of the racial vitriol aimed at Obama when someone painted a swastika on his Smyrna, Ga., office following a contentious town hall meeting on health care last month.

One letter sent to his office addressed him as “Nigga David Scott.”

“The folks are not going to stand for socialized medicine even though negro’s (sic) refuse to stand on their own two feet,” another letter read.

Con’t at: McClatchy

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Filed under Change, Democrats, Republicans

House Formally Admonishes Joe Wilson Over “You Lie!”

Associated Press

AP/HuffPost—The House has voted to admonish Rep. Joe Wilson over his “You lie” outburst to President Barack Obama during the president’s health care speech to Congress last week.

Heckling Congressman Joe Wilson

Heckling Congressman Joe Wilson


The 240-179 vote on the resolution of disapproval reflected the sharp partisan divide over the issue. Democrats insisted that the South Carolina Republican take responsibility for what they said was a serious breach of decorum. Republicans characterized the vote as a political stunt.

Wilson himself would not back down on his position that he owed the House no apology. Surrounded by Republican supporters, Wilson said Obama had “graciously accepted my apology and the issue is over.”

Here is the vote tally:

Dem: 233Y, 12N, 5Pres, 6Abs
Repub: 7Y, 167N, 0Pres, 4Abs

Total: 240Y, 179N, 5Pres, 10Abs

DEMS NO
Arcuri
Delahunt
Giffords
Hinchey
Hodes
Kucinich
Maffei
Massa
McDermott
Moore (WI)
Taylor
Teague

REPUBS YEA
Cao
Emerson
Flake
Inglis
Jones
Petri
Rohrabacher

DEMS PRESENT
Engel
Foster
Frank (MA)
Shea-Porter
Skelton

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Filed under Democrats, Politics

Nunn Charged In Murder Of Ex-Fiancée

Steve Nunn, booking photo

Steve Nunn, booking photo

TPMMuckraker—Steve Nunn, the Kentucky Republican former gubernatorial candidate and state lawmaker, has been charged in the murder of his former fiancée Amanda Ross.

As we told you Friday, Nunn was found with a gun and slit wrists in the cemetery where his parents are buried, hours after Ross — with whom he had had a tumultuous and violent relationship — was found shot to death in the parking lot of her Lexington apartment.

Nunn had spent the weekend in the hospital, before being taken yesterday morning to the Hart County jail. He had earlier been charged with violating the terms of a protective order obtained by Ross by carrying the gun, and with endangering a police officer by firing it after cops showed up at the cemetery.

The murder charges are contained in an arrest warrant obtained by Lexington police yesterday evening.

Read more

To view our previous coverage:

Kentucky GOP Pol Found With Slit Wrists After Shooting Death Of Ex-Fiancée

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Filed under Politics, Republicans, True Crime

The President, a Rapper, a Reporter, and Twitter…Hi-Jinx Ensue

Kanye West

Kanye West

The drama over Kanye West’s stupidity at Sunday’s VMAs has reached the White House where it’s causing even more drama.

President Obama’s colorful off-the-record comment about the incident was Tweeted by a reporter:

“President Obama called musician Kanye West a ‘jackass’ during an interview Monday with CNBC, an ABC News anchor reported to his followers on Twitter. But the tweet caused some red faces at ABC, and the network soon apologized for publicizing what had apparently been an off-the-record comment,” Garance Franke-Ruta reported Monday for the Washington Post.

“Pres. Obama just called Kanye West a ‘jackass’ for his outburst at VMAs when Taylor Swift won. Now THAT’S presidential,” “Nightline” co-anchor Terry Moran wrote Monday evening. Moran has more than 1 million followers on the microblogging service.

Speaking of Obama and West, maybe the President saw the YouTube mashup of the rapper dissing him ala GOP Congressman Joe Wilson, and thought it was real.

Now if we could only get him to call a Republican a jackass. 😉

Anyway, if you haven’t seen the video yet, here it is:

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Filed under Humor, Media and Entertainment, Politics

Sociopathy on the Right: Ayn Rand and the Triumph of Conservative Cultism by Tim Wise

Diary by Audiegrl

Author Tim Wise

Author Tim Wise

From Tim Wise written @ DKos—At first it seemed little more than a bizarre rant, only slightly worse than those to which we’ve grown accustomed, given the source. To wit, Rush Limbaugh, who on September 11 condemned President Obama for speaking that day about community service, and encouraging young people to become involved in service projects as a way to help make America a better place. Far from seeing such a call as a positive request to take personal responsibility for improving one’s nation, to Limbaugh, it was little more than the “first step toward fascism,” intended to conscript the young into a volunteer army, bent on helping to carry out the President’s political agenda.

Community service, Limbaugh explained, was something that should be done by convicts. Specifically, he offered: “Let prisoners do it, let prisoners pick up the trash. Let prisoners mow some highway grass. This — this community service, folks, it’s insidious. It is nothing more than a well-sounding compassionate label. But it means something entirely different. It means turning you into a robot.” Yes, of course. That’s not insane at all.

The anti-social nature of the diatribe was stunning. Service, according to the gospel of Limbaugh, is for suckers, for society’s “losers,” for people who have committed crimes. In other words, it should be viewed as punishment rather than as something to be applauded and encouraged. To do for community is a fool’s errand.

Yet as bizarre as his words may seem at first blush, they actually illustrate with bold clarity the fundamental (and increasingly common) core of the conservative belief system. They speak to the sociopathy that is at the heart of the far-right worldview. It is a worldview that holds, quite simply, that doing for others is contemptible; that doing for self is the purpose of human life; that altruism and service are somehow pathologies pushed by collectivists and should be subordinated to selfishness and greed.

Sound too extreme? Well if so, consider this. Among the most interesting phenomena of the past year–and especially since the inauguration of Barack Obama–has been the explosion of interest in (and sales of) books by the late author, Ayn Rand: most prominently her classic novels, The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged. Indeed, the latter had an all-time record year in 2008, and 2009 sales are on a pace to shatter even last year’s numbers.

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Between Barack and a Hard Place: Racism and White Denial in the Age of Obama

Between Barack and a Hard Place: Racism and White Denial in the Age of Obama


If you haven’t picked up a copy of Tim Wise’s great book Between Barack and a Hard Place: Racism and White Denial in the Age of Obama please do. I highly recommend it. You probably have seen Tim on your favorite political cable programs. This is a man who ‘speaks truth to power‘, and continues to do so, even after he received threats after his appearance on Fox News. His is an important voice, that we need to make sure is heard.

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Filed under Democrats, Editorial, Media and Entertainment, Partisan Politics, Politics, Republicans

“I Am Scared for My Black Husband”, Diary by Hotchimera

Special thanks to Hotchimera, our latest contributor to the44Diaries. Her diary is both poignant and thought-provoking, while we all try to navigate the strange new political landscape of 2009. We have heard and seen alot about how Republican’s are scared, but I thought it was important to also talk about how some African-American Democrats are scared too. In these crazy times, it cuts both ways.

DKos/Hotchimera—Everyday I pray for my husbands’s safety.

He travels really far for work on public transportation and I am worried about the environment out there.

I did not want to write this diary but the nastiness is rising so fast out there that I have to share how I feel.

The other day my daughter and I were walking to the PO and someone yelled
‘Black Bitches” at us from a driving truck.

I even worry about standing at the bus stop alone waiting for my daughter to get off the bus. The only place to stand is right on the corner of the mains street and it is very quiet and empty.

There is a Confederate flag hanging prominently on our way out of the neighborhood.

The school speech given by Obama was banned by our kid’s school with no notice sent out and my daughter really felt hurt by it.

What am I to tell her? I told her the truth.

Everytime we turn on the tv we see people ranting and raving and hating our President.

I go to bed with a feeling of disquiet every night and I go through the day with the same feeling and it is not going away.

I feel as if something is in the air: as if something is imminent.

There is a Preacher calling for the President to die.

The President is treated like a boy in Congress and the person who did it is now a hero.

Obama signs with him posed as a witch doctor.

Signs of him compared to a Gorilla.

Prominent politicians and radio personalities are spewing racist invective daily and all I see is a rabble of white angry faces screaming in support.

Then I turn on the tv this morning to see Morning Joe with Peggy Noonan and Pat Buchanan saying Democrats are playling the race card.

Read more…

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Filed under Democrats, Editorial, Partisan Politics, Politics, Republicans