Rush Limbaugh Slammed by New GOP Chairman Steele

(SALEM, Ore.) - I am having a hard time picturing Republicans being led by an African-American political party chairman, but that's how it is these days, and it is nearly as comical as one might expect.

I don't mean that party chair Michael Steele is so funny and I actually think he has shown some guts with his less than flattering comments on the country's great divide; Rush Limbaugh.

Steele's description of the hateful media pundit/drug addict as "incendiary" and "ugly" is an attention grabber and worth knowing. Limbaugh recently said that he hoped Obama's plan to save the U.S. economy fails.

Finally, the progressives of this land can look at a propaganda tool for the rich like Limbaugh and say, "America: Love it or leave it!" Things certainly have turned around.

Regarding Steele; it seems obviously that any black politician who sides with Republicans has chosen an interesting road in life for a lack of better terms. A considerable percentage of this party's members I think very clearly, do not seek the leadership of a black politician. I'm sure some, even most, are fine with it, but others are only using Steele the same way Limbaugh is used; as a tool.

Lay it on the Line

In an interview Saturday night with CNN's D.L. Hughley, Steele at first elicited the typical defensive statement over Limbaugh, saying "Rush Limbaugh is an entertainer," and eventually adding the descriptions "incendiary" and "ugly" to the spokesman for angry white America.

Limbaugh fired back during his program Monday, saying, "Michael Steele — you are head of the RNC; you are not head of the Republican Party."

Limbaugh also said "something happened" to Steele.

Gee Rush, was Steele being honest or something?

The implication now was that Steele spent time on Limbaugh's program, it went to his head. It was the typical garbage that Limbaugh regularly puts out.

"Now I'm just an 'entertainer,' and now I'm 'ugly' and my program is 'incendiary,'" the entertainer said.

So Steele began his backward slide from a man with guts calling a spade a spade, to this: "What I was trying to say was a lot of people ... want to make Rush the scapegoat, the bogeyman, and he's not."

Ayers says what it boils down to, is that there's a party that has lost two elections and is struggling to find its way out of the wilderness.

He was one of several republican leaders who contradicted Limbaugh by saying that Steele is, indeed, the leader of the party.

"It's in Rush's interest," Ayers said in an interview, "to keep a controversy going."

I doubt Limbaugh is troubled by stirring up problems in the GOP any more than he is disturbed by dividing our country and always working on instilling anger and needless paranoia.

He is loyal to himself and that is the spirit Limbaugh tries to inspire in people. A true enemy of the poor and disadvantaged people of the United States and beyond, Limbaugh's willingness to cry out for war and support the politicians who in turn support groups like Haliburton, has kept him financially sound. No person who spouts his message will ever resolve our nation's difficulties.

For those of us with a conscience and that give thoughtful consideration to the talents and sincerity of the entertainers they choose, all I can say is, Rush is a band.

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Coast Guard video: 1 rescued, 3 missing in Fla. waters, including 2 NFL players

Coast Guard photo by Fireman Adam Campbell; below, a detail enlarged.

A Coast Guard boat approaches Nick Schuyler, a former University of South Florida football player, as he clings to a capsized boat Monday off the Florida coast.

Coast Guard locates boat that carried missing NFL players; one survivor found . Apart from the uncertain news, this is a really good blog post by of the Los Angeles Times

The news:
The U.S. Coast Guard has confirmed that the boat carrying NFL players Corey Smith and Marquis Cooper, and two others, has been found, along with one survivor. The St. Petersburg Times is reporting that former University of South Florida football player Nick Schuyler was found alive and clinging to the boat 38 miles west of Tampa Bay. The other three men remain missing.
he U.S. Coast Guard has found an overturned boat with one survivor off Florida's Gulf Coast, but it remains unclear whether it was the boat carrying two NFL players and two other men who had embarked on a fishing trip Saturday from Clearwater, Fla.

Petty Officer Sondra-Kay Kneen said only that searchers located an overturned boat today.

Searchers, hampered by rough weather, have been looking for a 21-foot vessel carrying Corey Smith, a Detroit Lions free-agent defensive end; Marquis Cooper, an Oakland Raiders linebacker; and Will Bleakley and Nick Schuyler, both former University of South Florida players.
Coast Guard video of the Medevac rescue of Nick Schuyler. (This does not look like a fun lift for a traumatized conscious person.)

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Rihanna and Chris Brown spotted at Miami Airport

Chris Brown and Rihanna were spotted leaving Miami together on a private jet. The battered‘Umbrella’ singer was pictured covering up as she boarded before boyfriend Chris. These pictures are grainy as hell, but oh well.As expected the two landed in LA on there private jet where Chris Brown will be facing the music.

Rihanna and Chris Brown at Miami Airport


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After $210 Billion In Bailouts For AIG, Some Political Leaders Ready To Proclaim It A Waste Of Money

Bailouts create an expectation for more bailouts:

A handful of lawmakers are questioning the decision to spend up to $30 billion in government funds to rescue mega-insurer American International Group, with Sen. Bob Corker saying the money still may not be enough to keep the struggling company afloat.

“It’s a tar baby,” said Corker (R-Tenn.), a senior member of the Banking Committee. “It’s not going to go away.”

The Treasury Department and Federal Reserve spent $150 billion propping up AIG last fall and regulators have suggested that the company may require additional government support if markets continue to spiral downwards. Some analysts believe that at least another $60 billion will be required to help AIG, bringing the total government investment in the company close to a staggering quarter of a trillion dollars.

AIG reported a fourth quarter loss of $61.7 billion on Monday - the largest quarterly loss for any company in history.

We’re told that if we let companies like AIG fail that we’ll pay for it with further economic downturn. And yet, I’m wondering what’s worse. More economic turmoil now, or hundreds of billions of dollars in additional federal spending that must be funded either with new and extravagant taxes or with borrowed money, thus further blowing up our national debt so that our children have to pay for it with new and extravagant taxes.

Personally, I’d take the economic turmoil now rather than worsening our budget situation and/or passing the buck on to our progeny.

On a related note, Corker is a Republican and said “tar baby” so he’s racist.


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Int'l Donors To Hamas: Here's $4.4 Billion To Rebuild Infrastructure That Israel Never Destroyed

Four and a half billion dollars that Hamas can transfer from infrastructure development to launching rockets at Israeli schools and hospitals:

Palestinian officials from rival factions welcomed pledges of more than $4.4 billion to rebuild the war-torn Gaza Strip that were made at the donors conference held in Sharm e-Sheikh on Monday. "We appreciate this very much, and we hope it can be transferred into reality in an expeditious fashion so we can see the reconstruction of Gaza begin immediately," chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat told The Jerusalem Post. Earlier on Monday, Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum told reporters in Gaza that the group welcomed "any Arab and international effort to rebuild what the occupation destroyed," calling the reconstruction process "a humane and moral" one.
And no of course Israel didn't do 4.4billion in damage. In fact new eyewitness reports says that they didn't do much damage to civilian infrastructure at all:

What I saw was that there had been precision attacks made on all of Hamas' infrastructure. Does UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon criticize the surgical destruction of the explosives cache in the Imad Akhel Mosque, of the National Forces compound, of the Shi Jaya police station, of the Ministry of Prisoners?... THERE WERE empty beds at Shifa Hospital and a threatening atmosphere... Terrorized Gazans used doublespeak when they told me most of the alleged 5,500 wounded were being treated in Egypt and Jordan. They want it known that the figure is a lie, and showed me that the wounded weren't in Gaza. No evidence exists of their presence in foreign hospitals, or of how they might have gotten there... Gazans contradicted allegations that Israel had murderously attacked civilians. They told me again and again that both civilians and Hamas fighters had evacuated safely from areas of Hamas activity in response to Israeli telephone calls, leaflets and megaphone warnings.
No worries though, because Clinton says that only $300 million of the $900 million US contribution will be going to Gaza. Hamas will have to join a unity government before Abbas gives them the rest of the money:

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said Tuesday a new national unity government that includes Hamas must be in place and internationally recognized to manage humanitarian aid for Gaza and the West Bank. Past efforts to form a unity government have failed. Reconciliation talks are scheduled to begin in Egypt later this week between Hamas, which controls Gaza, and Fatah, which controls the West Bank.
Post-Cast Lead infrastructure assistance to Israel, the victim of the eight years of missile barrages that provoked the war, continues to stand at zero.

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Yes, Your Honoraria: Former Dallas Mayor Ron Kirk Has a Small Tax Matter to Tend

A Friend of Unfair Park sends along this just-posted piece from Politico detailing Ron Kirk's taxing issue before the Senate Finance Committee, which just today announced it was pushing back his confirmation hearing as U.S. trade ambassador till next Monday. According to a missive sent to journalists by Finance Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and Finance Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), the former Dallas mayor owes $9,975 because of "honoraria that he did not collect -- they were recorded as a donation to his school -- but, in some cases, did deduct," as Ben Smith puts it for those not interested in reading the entire report, which is part of Kirk's vetting process.

The tax returns in question are for 2005-'07, and at issue are his speaking honoraria, which Kirk has sent to his alma mater, Austin College. Says the senators' letter, Kirk's payment to the school "help[s] fulfill a pledge he had made to the college for a scholarship fund. Since he asked for the honoraria to be assigned to Austin College, he did not think the honoraria were taxable income to him. His paid preparer also thought this was proper." But, notes the memo, "Mayor Kirk has agreed to promptly file amended returns reflecting the adjustments discussed in this memo."


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9 Things Wrong with the Jimmy Fallon Late Night Show

1. He took the Roots out of concert halls, stadiums, and alternative music festivals.

2. Who is Jimmy Fallon? I know who he is is...but sure, late night talk show hosts don't have a history of having strong personalities (Jay Leno?). But the comedy of Fallon is so...bland, so seemingly audienceless that I don't understand the appeal.

3. Licking things for 10 dollars. Yup, he paid $10 to three people to watch them lick a lawnmower, a printer, and a fishbowl. Which begs the question, does NBC have enough money to pay for writers for this show?

4. Your first guest shouldn't be someone who has a hard time showing disinterest. Robert DeNiro, I don't know whether to love or to hate you. Okay, I love you.

5. Fallon's entry onto the scene didn't put Leno out of a job.

6. Fallon's entry onto the scene didn't put Carson Daly out of a job. In fact, watching Last Call after Fallon, I'm inclined to say that Daly has talent???

7. Response to "Idiot Boyfriend" should have been a hint. No one wants to see Jimmy Fallon musical comedy. Not even slow jammed news.

8. Your second guest shouldn't be someone who has a hard time hiding (sexual) interest. JT + JF 4EVA

9. I kept wishing Tina Fey was sitting next to him. That wish will come true tomorrow, when she takes the guest seat.


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Skittles Puts Twitter Comments on Homepage

Skittles has redesigned its website to include live comments people are making on Twitter, a microblogging service. The site also pulls in data from other social networking sites including Facebook for the brand's "friends" and Wikipedia for information about its products. Carole Walker, Skittles' vp, integrated marketing communications, told Brandweek that "Skittles lives in a world that is unexpected."
The effort underscores Skittles' brand positioning, which Walker said was "a border zone ... Skittles lives in a world that is unexpected." In the past, that positioning has been reinforced with wacky ads from Chiat, but the site aims for a similar level of zaniness. The nutrition section of the site, for instance, is under the header "other gobbledegook."

Walker acknowledged that there's opportunity for consumers to vandalize the site and said the brand will monitor comments. "I would expect that users would contribute in a positive way but we could always take [negative or obscene comments] down if there's an issue," Walker said.
A lot of brands have added Facebook pages and Twitter accounts to push their products but Skittle's move to include the latest Twitter comments directly on its homepage is unique. A lot of people are discussing Skittles right now on Twitter as you can see here.


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Gunmen attack Sri Lankan cricket team

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (CNN) -- Gunmen attacked a bus carrying the Sri Lankan national cricket team Tuesday morning as it approached Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore for a match against Pakistan, wounding six or seven players, authorities and team officials said.
"When we spoke to the team manager, it appeared that there are a couple of gunshot wounds and a couple of shrapnel wounds," said Charith Senanayake, the team's media manager. The injured players have been taken to the hospital.

Local media reported that at least five security personnel were killed and several others were wounded.

"This is a very well-planned attack," according to security official Nadeem Sayed, who said some of the players were in serious condition. "The team is very much scared."

At least four gunmen were involved in the attack on the bus, Sayed said.

"I heard two loud explosions outside the stadium and a lot of AK-47 fire," said Hamish Roberts, a camera operator who was inside the stadium when the attack occurred. "It was pandemonium for a while."

Sports producer Gavin Scovell said security teams responded quickly.
"The guards were brilliant. They weren't panicking. They were very calm," Scovell said. "It must have been a terrifying experience, but they handled it well."

Many teams -- most recently the Australia and India national teams -- won't travel to Pakistan for cricket matches because of security concerns.

The Pakistani government has struggled to control terrorism. The Taliban and other insurgents have carved havens in Pakistan's North West Frontier Province.

Former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, 54, was heading the opposition to then-President Pervez Musharraf when she was assassinated in December 2007 during a campaign rally in Rawalpindi ahead of parliamentary elections.
The Pakistani government and CIA officials said Baitullah Mehsud, leader of the Taliban in Pakistan, was responsible for her death.

India has long blamed Pakistan for being a haven for extremists who have launched attacks in India, including an attack on India's parliament in 2002 and the November 2008 attacks in Mumbai.


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