In today's Election Countdown 2012 news: a Florida-based voting rights organization and two Florida voters filed a lawsuit to prevent the Secretary of State from a new attempt at purging the voter rolls, Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad joined a lawsuit seeking to overturn a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rule, and more.
D – 89 and counting*
"La vie est une tragédie pour celui qui sent, et une comédie pour celui qui pense" –Jean de La Bruyère
This Week with George Stephanopoulos as told to The Bobblespeak Translations. Axelrod: we need an economy built to last – until November anyway Stephanopoulos: you think that's a winning message?
Montreal. Heavy manners in Montreal on Grand Prix weekend: "Le Devoir tested the rumour that wearing the red square gets you stopped and searched in the metro this weekend. It does." "It's an undeclared state of emergency – normal rights have been suspended but without announcement. We're supposed to just understand it." "I was then told it was 'better to shut your mouth when you're wearing a red square.' The cop TRUDEAU ... then arrested—violently—one passer-by who asked what was going on and refused to identify himself (it's his right if he's not suspect of an infraction) and they left with the guy after giving me my ticket." "Since when is it is considered acceptable for cops to put tape over their badge numbers?" "Always be careful at #manifencours more & more undercover cops. My friend was followed for a good hour yesterday."
Friday. CEGEP student: "We're not going to put the movement on hold to appease big business, we're going to be out in the streets every night until we win. This isn't just about tuition hikes anymore, it's about civil rights and social inequality. I could care less about the F1 weekend." Tourist: "I saw a girl in high heels just get clobbered by police. I mean you're not gonna tell me she was protesting in high heels." "In front of a line of police a block away, dozens of the protesters – many of them dressed entirely in black – put on masks and ski goggles as they prepared for a fight." "When the cops walked too far ahead of the group, a large contingency of marchers noticed and sprinted across the park towards Ste-Catherine. A first attempt had failed: this one didn't. Metcalfe Street [F1 party and tourist scene] was, as a result, a chaotic scene: police forces just barely managed to contain the crowd and prevent them from reaching their goal, and then pushed them back by flooding the street with pepper spray." "[T]here's also nothing like walking for those many hours and kilometers, for the first time during my maple spring-summer stay, with hundreds of "veteran" anarchists–from CLAC [see here], a relatively longtime anarchist organization, and people who've been to many a mass mobilization and other mayhem, such as Quebec City during the alter-globalization days–along with lots of new anarchists–many clean-cut students, such as the ones pictured below, walking from the Metro to the 5 p.m. planned disruption of a fancy Grand Prix dinner by anticapitalists/anarchists."
Saturday. Tourist: "'It's like a movie,' one man said Saturday, as he watched a line of riot police block off a street in Old Montreal." "28 people were arrested as protesters tried to push into the Crescent Street bar strip, where several Grand Prix parties were being held. ... At least four police vehicles were vandalized — including one that was completely flipped over — and at least one business had its windows broken."
Sunday. "FECQ [not CLASSE, not CLAC] leader Éliane Laberge has announced plans for further demonstrations throughout the summer, not just to protest tuition hikes but also to focus on popular dissatisfaction." Protester: "I just find it to be a really disgusting display of wealth and excess, which is really insulting in the context of what's happening right now." "Hundreds of police officers and sniffer dogs swarmed the underground train line that services the track site on Ste-Hélène Island... after an anti-capitalist group [no doubt CLAC] called for disruptions." "36 people were arrested at a metro stations across the island, a move that a police spokesperson called a preventative measure. "
Quebec Liberal Minister of Culture Christine St-Pierre offers storyteller, poet and songwriter Fred Pellerin the Order of Quebec. "Here's the sting that Christine St-Pierre served up for the poet: "He has the right to wear the red square, everyone has the right to free expression, but we know what the red square means: it means intimidation, violence, and people blocking others from going to school. For us, that's what it means and for the big, big, big majority of Quebecers, that's what it means." Pellerin refuses the award. Ethan Cox: "We are at a moment of great possibility, of great promise. But it is also a moment of great danger. This is our chance to clean up the mess we have made, but if we fail, yet again, we risk the spiral of violence Hedges describes." "Once the panda released me from his embrace on rue Sainte-Catherine on a recent Saturday night, men at the leather bar across the way waved him over for their chance at a law-breaking hug. (CL)
FL. Alleged, totally, but: "Charlie Crist [R] attempted to run over people while he was intoxicated and operating a golf cart." And more. Much more. Voting rights: "On June 8, two Florida voters and a voting rights group filed a lawsuit to stop a new attempt by the Florida Secretary of State to purge the voting rolls of certain voters" based on the driver's license methodology of the purge. "A Herald/Times review of voter information from Florida's largest counties, however, has identified only six noncitizens as having voted so far." Corruption: "Adam Putnam R — former congressman, current commissioner of agriculture and widely viewed as the future of Florida politics — became a very rich man in 2005 when taxpayers spent $25.5 million on 2,042 acres of his family's ranch that had been valued at $5.5 million a year earlier."
IA. Extraction: "Iowa Governor Terry Branstad has joined a lawsuit seeking to overturn a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rule that would gradually reduce mercury and other toxic emissions from power plants. Meanwhile, a group of state attorneys general including Tom Miller of Iowa have asked a U.S. Court of Appeals to uphold the EPA rule."
IL. Rahm: "How many of his hospital roommates died? Three or five?"
NV. "[Let's] put a moratorium on questions that begin, "Mr. President... The _____ are saying that ____ and how would you respond?" For example: "Question: What actions are currently being taken by the Department of Justice to confirm every eligible American citizen's right to vote"?
PA. Extraction: "DEP records show Texas-based Range Resources Corp. was responsible for a stream discharge, a drilling fluid leak and an overturned tanker spilling brine in Amwell — all of which township officials learned about weeks later from workers, Barale said. 'DEP keeps you in the dark, anyhow. So I don't have much faith in them.'"
VA. "'At first the studies were about 'climate change.' Then 'sea level rise.' Now coastal 'resilience.' 'It's kind of silly. But the reality is, some of the phrases just really send people screaming. We want to use language that doesn't alienate people.'"
WI. "Feingold, who retains his rock star status for many of the party faithful, wasn't at this weekend's convention, though his organization Progressives United organization had a table set up." Recall, Kos: "Obama stayed away. ... Because he would be embarrassed if he lost. I'll tell you what. If he shows that he's going to fight for the things that I care about, I will fight twice as hard for him." And if he doesn't? "Then I'll vote for him." Why? Extraction: "Department of Natural Resources referred two silica [frac] sand mining companies for prosecution, [the first] since the recent so-called frac sand boom started in the state, according to regional DNR spokesman Ed Culhane." Walker: "I know in my state our reforms allowed us to protect firefighters, police officers and teachers. That's not what I think of when I think of big government." Corruption: "Several sources confirm to TODAY'S TMJ4 that Nancy Evans was escorted from the [house of correction in Franklin].... [T]he investigation focuses around tens of thousands of dollars that may have been embezzled." Police: "The day after Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker survived his recall election, hundreds of activists marched in the streets of Milwaukee in non-violent civil disobedience from Pere Marquette Park to City Hall and into the banking district. Police used horses to push the demonstrators from the streets and pinned some of them against walls. Police on horses ripped banners from the demonstrators and chased them."
Inside Baseball. MoDo: "(Adding insult to injury, the Florida governor had to help make his less studious brother president by shoplifting the Sunshine State in 2000.)" That's some parenthetical. "Nixon launched and managed five successive and overlapping wars — against the anti-Vietnam War movement, the news media, the Democrats, the justice system and, finally, against history itself. " Seems familiar. "Jonathan Haidt's generic statement was, 'working-class people vote conservative.' Actually most working-class people don't vote conservative, but as Cimpian et al. point out, such a statement 'requires little evidence to be judged true.'" "It will be fascinating to see if liberals, who say they believe in evolution, are able to evolve, adapt, and overcome the forces that reelected Scott Walker and are poised to dump President Obama." "[I]f the past decade is not proof that there are no circumstances capable of reviving the left in its nineteenth and twentieth-century form, then what would proof be like? (Cf.)"
Jawbs. ["T]he argument [via the "doing fine" flap] is now fully engaged over the relationship between government job loss and the economic crisis." A little late.
The trail. WalMart Moms: "More than one Richmond participant cited 'maybe three years isn't enough' to turn things around." Heading toward conventional wisdom: "About 10 battleground states will decide the election, and seven of them have employment levels that beat the U.S. average." Also heading: "[Obama] has largely has encouraged the dramatic growth in natural gas extraction taking place in PA, OH [swing states] and a few other states" like CO, also a swing state.
Green Party. The Independent Green Party expects to place five nominees on the 2012 ballot for U.S. House.
Romney. "No candidate in the 2012 race adapted more swiftly and effectively [than Romney] to the rise of the super PACs in the wake of US Supreme Court and other rulings that effectively removed any barriers to individual and corporate donations to such so-called independent groups."
Obama. "Obama, who long ago gave up the 'hope and change' message that won him the White House in 2008, is talking about congressional 'to-do' lists." Fired up! Teebee ad, Priorities USA, Bained steel worker: "They promised us healthcare packages, they promised to maintain our retirement program, and those are the first two things that disappeared." Not like Simpson-Bowles! Axelrod: "From time to time at the White House I would see Holder at meetings, but I rarely spoke to him.... I was very sensitive to the fact... that in the last administration, the political arm of the White House was very active in the Justice Department." From the sound of that, if I didn't know better, I'd swear Axelrod was lawyered up. Networks Nation Obama video: "Change is hard, but we've seen that it's possible, as long as you're willing to keep up that fight, I'll be right there with you." Just ask Tom Barrett!
* 89 days 'til the Democratic National Convention feasts on lobsters and champagne on the floor of the Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, NC. 89 is one of the words censored on the Chinese Internet.