Friday Mashup (7/31/09)

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  • First of all, best wishes to Sen. Chris Dodd for a full recovery from upcoming prostate cancer surgery (here).
  • HS_03-homer_simpson_drunk

  • Also in a medical vein, the Bucks County Courier Times tells us the following from its “Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down” segment today…

    (Thumbs Up) to Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey, who’s lobbying City Council for a law that would require bars to report fights to 911. The proposal follows the beating death of a Lansdale man who was pummeled and kicked outside a sports bar at Citizens Bank Park.

    Oh sure – this is great. Pass a law obligating the police to call 911 and divert precious, comparatively scarce resources that could be used to save lives to break up tend to the victims of bar fights started by a bunch of drunks.

    You want a more constructive idea? Well then, as noted here by Philadelphia City Controller Alan Butkovitz…

    “Tele-nursing allows better prioritization of emergency responses,” said (Butkovitz). “Our fire commissioner says that 80 percent of the city’s 220,000 emergency calls each year should not be getting rescue squad response. With tele-nurses handling non-emergency 911 calls, those who have ‘drop-everything’ emergencies will have more rapid responses.”

    “It is possible that the use of tele-nurses could save the city as much as $2.5 million per year and save lives,” Butkovitz reported.

    Memo to the Courier-Times editorial board: stick to opining on matters “closer to home” in your typically provincial manner, since that seems to resonate better with your predominantly-right-wing audience.

  • George_Voinovich_0001

  • Also, I’m still waiting for the howls of outrage from our corporate media punditocracy over the recent comment from departing Repug Sen. George Voinovich of Ohio that the downfall of the Republican Party has occurred because, as noted here…

    “We got too many Jim DeMints and Tom Coburns,” Voinovich told the Columbus Dispatch. “It’s the southerners.”

    That is easily one of the most astute remarks I’ve heard from a politician of either major party affiliation in a loooong time.

    And yes, while it’s true that there are some random blog posts I found out there on the subject, I have yet to hear Messrs. Krauthammer, Kristol, Will, Cohen and their brethren weigh in (a few Google searches produced nothing).

    This is typical, though; as Media Matters notes here, it is much easier for the news organizations with initials for names to focus on real or alleged Democratic missteps than it is for the Repugs.

    Also, as long as we’re talking about the South, this post from kos tells us that they are primarily the individuals comprising the Obama “birthers” out there (the life forms who still agitate themselves over the fantasy that our president was not born in this country).

    I would give Voinovich credit for interjecting some much-needed reality into the political discussion, but since he’s leaving, what he says really isn’t going to matter. Now saying it and then defending his words in Congress in the midst of a re-election campaign – that would be truly admirable.

  • Corker_6a00d83451581569e2010536626b78970c-800wi

  • I must point out the following amusing item from The National Review Online pertaining to Repug Tennessee Senator Bob Corker (here)…

    Corker says President Obama recently met with him, something he appreciates. But Corker doesn’t think Obama “has his feet on the ground with regard to what appropriate health reform is.” He adds, “And he personalizes everything, it’s all, ‘I, I, I.'” Corker suspects that for Obama “doing this with some massive bill is about politics…To him, it’s about a political victory, not about doing what’s in the long-term interest of citizens.”

    Here is Corker’s statement on the matter of whether or not he will vote to confirm Judge Sonia Sotomayor for the Supreme Court…

    “Judge Sotomayor has an impressive background and an inspiring American story. I enjoyed meeting with her in June and let her know I would reserve judgment on her nomination until the conclusion of a fair and thorough hearings process,” said Corker. “After much deliberation and careful review, I have determined that Judge Sotomayor’s record and many of her past statements reflect a view of the Supreme Court that is different from my own. I view the Supreme Court as a body charged with impartially deciding what the law means as it is applied to a specific case. I believe Judge Sotomayor views the Supreme Court as more of a policy-making body where laws are shaped based on the personal views of the justices. Unfortunately, nothing I heard during Judge Sotomayor’s confirmation hearings or in my meeting with her in June sufficiently allayed this concern. For this reason, I’m disappointed to say, I will not be able to support Judge Sotomayor’s nomination.”

    And we’re supposed to deal seriously with these people on matters of legislation critical to our economy, our health care, and our planet in general…

  • Malcolm

  • And finally, I must communicate this even-more-absurd item from former Laura Bush employee Andrew Malcolm at the LA Times…

    According to a new Washington Post survey, a clear majority of Americans (55%) approve of the job (Vice President Joe) Biden’s doing, perhaps because thanks to schedules like today’s, they can’t know much about what that job he’s doing actually is.

    Biden’s numbers are tied closely to Americans’ belief in the economic efficacy of President Obama’s stimulus package. Those who think it’ll work, like him; those who don’t, don’t.

    Those Biden approval numbers still aren’t quite as good as Dick Cheney’s April approval of 64% from a 2001 Post poll.

    Oh mah gawd…

    To communicate a more up-to-date approval rating on “Deadeye Dick” that actually isn’t AT LEAST EIGHT YEARS OLD, this tells us that the former veep is only slightly less popular than Cuba and Venezuela (though, as Matt Yglesias points out, “China and Russia are kicking his ass”).

    Well, as least “Big Time” can look on the bright side; he’s bound to be more popular than Iran and North Korea.

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