House and Senate leaders from both parties will make their way to the White House this afternoon at President Barack Obama’s request for a last-ditch effort to reach an agreement to avoid the impending fiscal cliff. The parties will enter the meeting seeming as far apart as ever on an agreement to avert the combination of automatic tax hikes and spending cuts set to take effect on Jan. 1. Republicans(Snip) say they have acted – by passing an extension of all of the expiring Bush tax cuts, an unpalatable proposition to Democrats – and now it’s the Senate’s turn.
Comments: And all the time I thought CBS would just be reporting Obie´s wonderfulness...
Right now O´Brien sees him in his usual "voting Present" mode, sitting there with his middle finger to his cheek, waiting for the kids to duke it out and come up with something for which he can take credit.
Will he put anything palatable forward? Do any heavy lifting? Make any concession re spending? Surely you jest...
O´Brien toes the Obama Administration State Media line.
Once again, I tender my offer to sit in a small Washington office for a week or two with a copy of whatever passes for an actual budget from the current year and a grossof Sharpies, and come up with a new lower spending plan.
I would cut out things like F-16 aircraft for the Egyptians and wild wind-energy support schemes which are full of sound and fury signifying nothing. The President would probably end up with less than half of his staff of advisors whose feet don´t fit any known limb, and the Drepartment of Education, etc. would be only a bad memory.
Nearly four years ago, the McStays left their snug home in suburban San Diego County on a chilly February evening. Piling into their Isuzu Trooper, parents Joseph and Summer and young sons Gianni and Joseph Jr. left behind two dogs, two bowls of popcorn and, soon, a mystery. Their car turned up four days later in the parking lot of a mini-mall near the Mexican border, with a few birthday toys for one of the boys tossed in back. But there was no sign of the McStays. About 1,374 days later and about 100 miles to the north, San Bernardino County
London British Airways IAG.MC +0.38% thinks it has the answer for flavorless airline food: umami. Airline food can take a beating on its way to the plate. It´s cooked many hours before a flight, then rapidly chilled, wrapped, trucked, stored and reheated. This often leaves it overcooked, dry and tough. In the air, passengers lose about 30% of their ability to taste as a result of extremely dry cabin conditions and high-altitude pressure inside airplanes. So even food that might be appetizing on the ground tastes bland at 35,000 feet. For years airlines have added salt(Snip)Enter umami, the savory taste
Four-time IndyCar champion Dario Franchitti announced Thursday he will no longer be able to compete in auto racing because of injuries suffered in an Oct. 6 crash. The Chip Ganassi Racing driver, who suffered a broken back, right ankle and concussion in a crash at the Houston Grand Prix that sent his car airborne into a catchfence and back onto the temporary street circuit, also won three Indianapolis 500s in a career that started in 1997. Franchitti, 40, and his team were looking forward to his return in 2014, when Ganassi is welcoming 2013 Indianapolis 500 winner Tony Kanaan to
New guidelines would double the number of Americans on cholesterol-lowering drugs. Dr. Sanjay Gupta of CNN wondered on Twitter whether we are “waving the white flag” when it comes to helping Americans avoid heart disease. Dr. Eric Topol, a cardiologist and chief academic officer of Scripps Health, tweeted that the doubling of patients on statins, which can lower cholesterol by up to 50%, was “not good.” But the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology remained convinced that the 2002 federal recommendations for when to start people on the drugs needed to be updated.
Google today released its latest transparency report with details about government requests for user data, which the search giant said have increased by more than 100 percent since it started releasing these reports in 2010. "This comes as usage of our services continues to grow, but also as more governments have made requests than ever before," Google said in a blog post. "And these numbers only include the requests we´re allowed to publish." Google and its rivals are not allowed to publish specific details about national security-related requests. In the wake of the Edward Snowden leaks, Google and others pushed
More than 300 tribal nations sent their leaders to Washington today – some in buckskins and feathered head-dress, some in coat and tie – for the annual summit at which President Obama reminded them that as a presidential candidate in 2008 he was adopted into the Crow Nation by a Native American couple. “As a proud adopted member of the Crow Nation,” he began, “let me say, ‘Kaheé – welcome – to all of you.” The tribal summit is considered a meeting of sovereign nations coming together, (Snip)Unspoken in public was the growing debate over the term “Redskins,” and the
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Thursday will convene a special meeting of the Senate Democratic caucus and senior White Officials to discuss the troubled rollout of ObamaCare. Reid on Wednesday told reporters he would not answer questions about the hundreds of thousands of insurance policy cancellations or other issues until he has further discussions with the White House. The Senate leader said President Obama called him Tuesday evening to discuss healthcare and other issues. Several Democrats have signed onto a proposal sponsored by Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) that would force insurance companies to let people keep their health plans if they
Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) said on C-SPAN Wednesday morning that the Independent Payments Advisory Board (IPAB)--the so-called "death panel" of Obamacare, which will cut Medicare costs by restricting care--should be "revisited." His comments came as more Democrats are joining calls to amend Obamacare, in particular by supporting the Keep Your Health Plan Act, proposed by Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), which would fulfill President Barack Obama´s oft-repeated promise that patients could keep their existing health insurance. Cardin was responding to a caller who had expressed concerns about the constitutionality of the IPAB, which former White House Office of Management and Budget director Peter
President Obama says he´s taking a unique trip next year to Indian Country. "I saw the beauty of Crow Agency, Montana, when I was a candidate for this office," the president told the annual White House Tribal Nations Conference on Wednesday. "Next year, I´ll make my first trip to Indian Country as President." Seeking to improve relations between the federal government and tribal nations, Obama vowed cooperation in four areas: Justice and tribal sovereignty, economic development, health care, and stewardship of the land.
LONDON — The head of Hezbollah, the Lebanese Shiite militant group and political party, whose armed followers are fighting in Syria on the side of President Bashar al-Assad, pledged on Thursday that his forces would remain there as long as necessary. The leader, Hassan Nasrallah, spoke at a Shiite Muslim ceremony in his southern Beirut stronghold marking Ashura, (Snip)Mr. Nasrallah’s battle-hardened fighters joined the fray in Syria earlier this year to recapture a border town, and Mr. Assad’s foes say they have also been deployed on other fronts near Damascus, the capital, and Aleppo in the north.
Four U.S. Marines were killed Wednesday during a range maintenance operation at Camp Pendleton in California, the base said in a press release. The base did not provide any other details on what it called a “fatal incident,” but said it would release the names of those killed after their families were notified. The Marines were clearing the range of unexploded ordnance, and it was not a live firing range, a Marine official said. (Snip)A military investigation determined human error was to blame for that accident. According to the probe´s findings, a Marine operating a 60 mm mortar tube and
The USS George Washington aircraft carrier arrived in the Philippines Thursday to boost international efforts to bring aid and relief to the people of the typhoon-devastated region, many of whom have been without much food and clean water for six days. The ship is part of the U.S. Navy´s 7th Fleet and is accompanied by seven other ships that make up the George Washington Strike Group. The aircraft carrier has a crew of 5,500 and brings with it 21 helicopters, which can be used to ferry goods to hard-to-reach areas where people have seen no aid since typhoon Haiyan hit Friday.
In a recent interview with BBC News, Oprah Winfrey said that President Obama is disrespected because he is an African-American. "There’s a level of disrespect for the office that occurs. And that occurs in some cases and maybe even many cases because he’s African-American," Winfrey said. "There’s no question about that, and it’s the kind of thing nobody ever says but everybody’s thinking it." Speaking with the BBC´s Will Gompertz in the UK to promote "The Butler," Winfrey also spoke to the global issue of racism. "It´s gotten better. Are there still places where people are terrorized because of the color of their
President Obama announces today that he supports a “fix” for Obamacare that would allow some Americans to keep the healthcare plans they already had for an additional year. That was already built into the Affordable Care Act aka Obamacare law. It’s not an actual change to anything, it’s just an attempt to get out ahead of the bills that Republican Fred Upton and Democrat Mary Landrieu are sponsoring in the House and Senate that would legislatively “fix” Obamacare. It’s an exercise in blame-shifting, and an abdication of leadership. As news of the plan leaked, skepticism spread.(Snip for tweets)Barack Obama’s credibility
To paraphrase Oscar Wilde, you’d have to have a heart of stone not to laugh at the unraveling of Obamacare. First, the obligatory caveats. It is no laughing matter that millions of Americans’ lives have been thrown into anxious chaos as they lose their health insurance, their doctors, their money, or all three. Nor is it particularly amusing to think of the incredible waste of time and tax dollars that has gone into Obamacare’s construction. And the still-unfolding violence that this misbegotten legislation will visit on the economy and our liberties is not funny either. This very magazine has been downright
Desperate times call for desperate measures, so on Thursday one desperate President, Barack Obama, attempted to sell the idea that he had found a way to keep his Obamacare pledge: “If you like your insurance plan, you can keep it.” This exuberantly delivered and oft-repeated sales pitch for the program that has dominated his presidency “ended up not being accurate,” as Obama mincingly put it. He had no choice — not when health insurers complying with his regulations have canceled policies for millions of Americans. Not when those newly uninsured cannot buy coverage using Obama’s botched website. Not when congressional Democrats are panicking
Oprah Winfrey, one of the most powerful women in the world, declared she would not be stripping off her lingerie to get ‘buck naked’ on screen. The billionaire TV tsarina and occasional actress was speaking to me about her role in director Lee Daniels’s movie The Butler, in which she plays Gloria, wife of a White House butler played by Forest Whitaker. Gloria becomes bored with her middle-class life while her husband’s off looking after ‘that other family in the White House’. Oprah said that after a while Gloria starts to drink, and fools around with a neighbour, played by
In his 2007 biography of Barack Obama, Obama: From Promise to Power, Chicago Tribune reporter David Mendell described the exchange he had with then-Illinois state Sen. Barack Obama just minutes before he delivered the keynote address at the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston: After Obama and I slipped through a security checkpoint and he momentarily broke free from the entourage, I sidled up to him and told him that he seemed to be impressing many people of influence in this rarefied atmosphere. Obama, his gaze fixed directly ahead, never broke his stride. “I´m LeBron, baby,” he replied, referring to LeBron
On Wednesday, Senator Mark Udall (D-CO) introduced a bill in the Senate that would allow Americans to keep their health insurance plans for a limit of two years. “I have repeatedly said that the Affordable Care Act isn’t perfect,” Udall said, “and it will need to be improved as it is implemented.” Udall already wants to push off the open enrollment deadline on the Obamacare health exchanges until the end of May. But Udall’s plan isn’t the only one in the offing. Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) has introduced the “Keeping the Affordable Care Act Promise Act,” co-sponsored by Sens. Dianne
“Even if it takes a change to the law, the president should honor the commitment the federal government made to those people and let them keep what they got.” — Bill Clinton, Nov. 12 So the former president asserts that the current president continues to dishonor his “you like your plan, you can keep your plan” pledge. And calls for the Affordable Care Act to be changed, despite furious White House resistance to the very idea. Coming from the dean of the Democratic Party, this one line marked the breaching of the dam. It legitimized the brewing rebellion of panicked
On Thursday, President Obama conducted the “Springtime for Hitler” of press conferences. He came out at noon and proceeded to blather his way through an hour of self-justifications and evasions and apologies and complaints. And as he went on, you could almost see America reacting as the audience in “The Producers” did to the happy-talk number about Adolf romping at his retreat in Berchtesgaden — with gaped-mouth astonishment. First, he said he had not been “informed directly that the Web site would not be working.” What on earth does that mean? Was he somehow informed indirectly? In an affronted tone, the president
The current troubles of the Obama presidency can be read back into its beginnings. Rule by personal charisma has met its proper fate. The spell has been broken, and the magician stands exposed. We need no pollsters to tell us of the loss of faith in Mr. Obama´s policies—and, more significantly, in the man himself. Charisma is like that. Crowds come together and they project their needs onto an imagined redeemer. The redeemer leaves the crowd to its imagination: For as long as the charismatic moment lasts—a year, an era—the redeemer is above and beyond judgment. He glides through crises,
Something is seriously wrong with conservatism. Since Ronald Reagan’s last year in office, Republicans have only twice won a majority of votes cast for president—both times with a George Bush atop the ticket. And neither Bush was a conservative. For 25 years, something has prevented conservatives from winning the White House and prevented the Republicans who do win from governing as conservatives. What could it be? The Tea Party has an answer: RINOs—liberal Republicans in Name Only—have sabotaged the right, most recently in October when they collaborated with Democrats to raise the debt ceiling and end the government shutdown. Once RINOs are
President Obama’s former spiritual advisor Joshua DuBois joined The O’Reilly Factor to talk about his new book, “The President´s Devotional: Daily Readings That Inspired Obama.” He told Bill O’Reilly, “The president’s a committed Christian and his faith is a really important part of his life. Every single morning for the last six years he’s woken up and read these devotionals to try grow closer to God and closer to his neighbors as well.” DuBois recalled going with the president to visit Reverend Billy Graham. “He doesn’t wear this stuff on his sleeve. That’s not the kind guy he is, but he