It’s Moan-day

Nile news:

‘Mega protest’ planned in Egypt

Egyptian protesters have called for a massive demonstration on Tuesday in a bid to force out president Hosni Mubarak from power.

The so-called April 6 Movement said it plans to have more than a million people on the streets of the capital Cairo, as anti-government sentiment reaches a fever pitch.

Several hundred demonstrators remained camped out in Tahrir Square in central Cairo overnight, defying a curfew that has been extended by the army.

One of Al Jazeera’s correspondents said the military’s attempts to block access to the square on Monday by closing roads was not working as more people were arriving in a steady stream.

“Protesters say they’ll stay in this square for as long as Mubarak stays in power,” she said.


Egyptian reform leader calls for Mubarak to resign

Egypt’s most prominent democracy advocate took up a bullhorn Sunday and called for President Hosni Mubarak to resign, speaking to thousands of protesters who defied a curfew for a third night. Fighter jets streaked low overhead and police returned to the capital’s streets — high-profile displays of authority over a situation spiraling out of control.

Nobel Peace laureate Mohamed ElBaradei’s appearance in Tahrir, or Liberation, Square underscored the jockeying for leadership of the mass protest movement that erupted seemingly out of nowhere in the past week to shake the Arab world’s most populous nation.

(More articles at Memeorandum)

If wishes were camels:

Clinton Calls for ‘Orderly Transition’ in Egypt

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton called on Sunday for “an orderly transition” to a more politically open Egypt, stopping short of telling its embattled president, Hosni Mubarak, to step down but clearly laying the groundwork for his departure.

Mrs. Clinton, making a round of Sunday talk shows, insisted that Mr. Mubarak’s future was up to the Egyptian people. But she said on “State of the Union” on CNN that the United States stood “ready to help with the kind of transition that will lead to greater political and economic freedom.” And she emphasized that elections scheduled for this fall must be free and fair.

Unfortunately there isn’t much we can do right now to affect the outcome.

Paul Krugman:

The Manila Parallel

I am not writing about Egypt for tomorrow’s paper; I’ve done a bit of homework on the economy, but really don’t feel that I have much to contribute — besides, other stuff is happening in the world, and someone should be writing about it.

That said, I’m a bit surprised not to see anyone drawing the parallel that has jumped out at me (maybe because I spent time in the Philippines in 1990 and 1991, working for UNDP): the People Power revolution in Manila in 1986. This has some of the same feeling: a dictator who’s a long-time US client, a mass popular uprising that’s more about the perceived corruption of the government than about any particular ideology; El Baradei seems to be playing something like the Corazon Aquino role.

What happened in the Philippines was that after a disputed election the military leadership switched their support to Aquino and Marcos fled the country. The net result wasn’t a revolution but a change of power followed by some modest reforms.

Still, it was progress.

Teh stupid! It burns!:

Tracy Morgan calls Sarah Palin ‘the hottest MILF in the world’ on SAG Awards red carpet

Tracy Morgan has gone rogue.

The comedian gave his second racy shout-out to Sarah Palin this week on Sunday night, when he stopped on the red carpet at the SAG Awards to chat with E! host Giuliana Rancic.

“Sarah Palin, you’re the hottest MILF in the world!” Morgan shouted, referencing the raunchy acronym coined in the 1999 teen comedy “American Pie.”

He should be fired. Since he works for NBC he’ll probably get a raise.

BOHICA weather:

Major winter storm expected to hit Great Plains, eastern states

A massive storm system bringing heavy snow, sleet, and freezing rain could potentially impact 100 million people as it slams the Rockies, Plains, and Midwest regions early this week before traveling to the eastern seaboard Wednesday, according to forecasts on Sunday.

Freezing rain is expected to develop Sunday night and continue through Monday, producing a light grazing of ice that could lead to dangerous travel conditions in the central states, the National Weather Service said, but the primary storm system will hit early Tuesday and continue through Tuesday night.

I blame Sarah Palin

Shaking their tiny fists department:

Thousands Converge on Koch Brothers Billionaire’s Caucus; 25 Arrested

Twenty-five protesters were arrested in Rancho Mirage, California today, at a protest in front of the Rancho Las Palmas resort, site of the “Billionaire’s Caucus,” an annual meeting put on by the Koch Brothers and other corporate entities and conservative movement operators.

Riverside Sheriff’s deputy Melissa Nieburger said that the sheriff’s department did have contacts with protest organizers, which included the California Courage Campaign, CREDO,,, the California Nurses Association, United Domestic Workers of America and the main sponsor, the good-government group Common Cause, prior to the event, and that they were aware that some protesters would seek to be arrested for trespassing. She would not guarantee that all 25 who were arrested were part of that coordinated operation. The police, who wore riot gear, batons and helmets, did put the arrested into plastic handcuffs. Nieburger described them as “passive restraints.” They were being processed at press time, and Nieburger would not say whether they would be released or would spend the night at the jail in Indio.

Nieburger estimated between 800 and 1,000 activists at the “Uncloak the Kochs” event. Event organizers chartered buses from several locations around Southern California and claimed 1,500 people signed up for those buses, on top of any local activists who attended. It appeared from the ground that well over 1,000 protesters were there.

I don’t get it. I sympathize with the goal but exactly what did they accomplish by staging a protest and getting themselves arrested?

Random Headlines:

Axelrod on Way Out: ‘We’ve Learned Some Lessons’

“If you’re eating Chick-fil-A, you’re eating anti-gay”

TSA shuts door on private airport screening program

About Myiq2xu

I was born and raised in a different country - America. I don't know what this place is.
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77 Responses to It’s Moan-day

  1. “I don’t get it. I sympathize with the goal but exactly what did they accomplish by staging a protest and getting themselves arrested?”

    Ah, you’re young.

    • What I’m laughing about is the sure-to-come reaction when the Tea Party returns the favor and starts picketing Soros. You know it’s going to be rich with irony and hypocrisy.

      It’s stupid because both sides have their billionaire enablers.

  2. votermom says:

    I have been thinking about the parallels to People Power, I was there actually. It’s nice of Krugman to point it out.

    In Manila, at the point where the protesters where basically at the Palace gates, what the USA did was give Marcos & family a helicopter airlift to the nearest base, then asylum in Hawaii. There was actually a lot of anger against the USA for this in the streets, because to us it only underscored Marcos’ American backing, plus a driving force of the protests was that Marcos should face justice for his crimes.

    There is also the parallel of religious backing — the People Power revoution started with the Cradinal fo Manila throwing his support to the opposition leader, Cory Aquino (widow of the asassinated leader).

    The big difference imo though is that the People Power revolution happened after a rigged snap election, out of which Cory Aquino emerged as the clear opposition leader. And as opposition leaders Aquino was really very extremely un-radical, she was a reformer and a conservative.

    As crawdad points out, in Egypt there is a lot of volatility within the opposition itself because there is no clear leader. So I think that is the one thing that worries the USA the most and keeps it from offering Mubarak asylum at this point.

    If anyone is interested I can write a bit more about my thought about the historical echoes of Cairo & Manila.

    • votermom says:

      Btw, guess who was the USA president during the people power revolution — Reagan. It must be such a thrill for BO to have this moment\! He can be just like his idol!

      • okasha skatsi says:

        I wonder if Mubarak has portraits of BO and MO in coronation regalia. The Marcoses had such paintings made for the Reagans. The pictures were found in the palace after they absconded, but not even Nancy dared to bring them home.

        • votermom says:

          Imelda gave really good parties, you know. Saw lots of pix of Reagan dancing with her, and Marcos dancing with Nancy.

      • helenk says:

        Everyone remembers this hostages under Carter. The newspapers had headlines every day counting the days.
        How many remember there were hostages under Reagan who were held longer. The only news about it was one man keep a daily count in his front yard because his brother was one of them. Isn’t funny about the news and what they deem important?



        • Owen says:

          Well, its obvious…Carter was a raycist evil Democrat, and Raygun was a God-loving humanitarian Republican….

          You know, ‘The Liberal Media’ and all that…….

    • Mary says:

      Hmmmmm … rigged elections.

      Anything like rigged primaries? Grrrr

    • votermom says:

      Okay, I wrote up the rest of my thoughts here.

      You can comment here on it if you don’t have a login at corrente.

      • jjmtacoma says:

        Good post, I’ll be curious if anyone has any information about the Islamic Brotherhood.

        Even though we have “separation of Church and State” here – there is a ton of Christian language peppered through the government communications and anyone trying to be elected to higher offices frequently will site faith-y beliefs.

        I think it would be possible to have similar in a Muslim country without going as far as the Taliban interpretation of Sharia law.

        I don’t comment at Corrente very often, but I posted this comment in both places. I don’t think I have “Clinton” anywhere in my comment, so it should be ok.

      • djmm says:

        Excellent comments, Votermom, here and at correntewire. I hope that the US does surprise you and changes its support of dictators in favor of democracy. I was surprised to learn of the pressure that President GW Bush (??!) was putting on Mubarak.

        I am hopeful about the change in Egypt, however, like you, I am concerned about the influence of the Muslim Brotherhood. I am not skeptical about an Islamic country having Democracy: Mohammed’s successor was chosen democratically (which caused the split with the Shiites as they wanted a succession by his family members; the Sunnis went for voting). And I do not see the religion as inherently misogynistic (sects differ, as they do with Christianity and other religions). But like you, I am worried.

        Yes, I know Egypt is a secular, sophisticated country, where women have rights and jobs. So were Afghanistan (in the cities, pre-Taliban), Iran during the Shah’s time and Iraq before we invaded. One of your commentator’s noted that women are among the protesters in Egypt. Certainly, but women were among the protesters against the Shah in Iran. (Incidentally, women in Iran who tried to defy, even moderately, the new dress requirements after the Shah fell were very often beaten by other women.)

        I am highly skeptical of any pronouncements the Brotherhood might make. I remember their actions such as assassination of Anwar Sadat and the first bombing of the WTC. A leader of the Brotherhood, Omar Abdel-Rahman, is, I believe, still in a US prison for that bombing and is widely believed to have masterminded the assassination. Before the fall of the Shah, the Ayatollah virtuously proclaimed there would be freedom of religion and the press in Iran with women having full rights. (One reporter who spoke Farsi heard an aide joke with the Ayatollah about telling reporters what they wanted to hear.) We know how that worked out.

        Actions speak louder than words.

        Unless they have radically changed, bringing the Muslim Brotherhood into the government could be very negative for the Egyptian people and particularly women in the country. Of course, if they are 20% of the country, leaving them out could also be a disaster.


        • votermom says:

          I agree. Islam used to go hand-in-hand with freedom of thought and tolerance, way back.

          But so far in recent ME history, as you point out, sudden regime change to authoritarian Islamic theocracy has resulted in women being shoved back into purdah.

          Sometimes it feels like, to me, that we are witnessing a global overall reversal of women’s rights.

    • Three Wickets says:

      Thanks votermom. I was looking forward to your thoughts on the Aquino comparison, and here you are. Agree there are some parallels, but Aquino as you say was not a radical, and she was also after all a woman. 🙂

  3. imustprotest says:

    Not to mention we have our very own Imelda “Let Them Wear Jimmy Choos” in the WH! (okay mixed metaphor with Marie Antoinette, I know!)

  4. yttik says:

    It’s been a long week and it’s only fricken Monday. I don’t think the last couple of weeks ever ended properly for us, so I’ve just been having one long string of Mondays. We’re doing one of those 21 day marathon weeks that just never seem to end.

  5. Moan is right. Gray and cloudy and work to do, and all I want to do is go back to bed. Monday’s are the worst. IBSP

  6. okasha skatsi says:

    Dakinikat has a good piece on the role of women in the Egyptian uprising.

    Now that el Baradei has emerged as a leader of the reform movement, its direction away from Islamic extremism ought to become clearer. This should make it easier for the US to support the protestors and perhaps to go public with that support. At the very least, it will give the SOS more leverage to pry Mubarak loose.

    It’s just frosting on the cake that support for el-Baradei gives the Cheney/Bush regime a black eye, too. The guy who kept insisting, rightly, that there were no WMD in Iraq is going to have a lot of cred with the rest of the ME.

    • votermom says:

      Hah! I should have read that before I wrote my pice. I eat crow then.

      • djmm says:

        Votermom, the reports are hopeful but I still think you raised valid concerns.

        My heart is with the women of Egypt. In addition to Cleopatra and Hatshepsut, I wish they had added the name of mathematician, teacher, martyr (and one of my personal heroines) Hypatia. (The recent movie Agora with Rachel Weiss does her character justice, but softens her death: she was beaten and skinned alive by Christian fanatics.)


        • votermom says:

          I forgot that Hypatia was from Egypt — always think of her as Greek.

          I think again on some blogs I am seeing black & white thinking — Mubarak is bad (I agree) so those who oppose him must be wholly good. But as Hillary knows, it’s a lot more complicated than that. I’m just glad she’s SoS, and I hope BO & Biden stop sabotaging her.

  7. helenk says:

    Fla judge to rule soon in healthcare case.



  8. Valissa says:

    Now here’s something to moan about…

    Hitler’s last bodyguard gives up on fan mail

  9. Valissa says:

    On a lighter note…

    Souvenir condoms rolled out for UK royal wedding
    While Britain has a public holiday to celebrate Prince William’s wedding, one company is taking the party one step further with souvenir condoms that urge lovers to “lie back and think of England”.

  10. yttik says:

    Here’s a poll about the tea parties:

    “Seven in 10 U.S. adults say Republican congressional leaders should consider Tea Party ideas in addressing the nation’s problems, Gallup reported Monday.”

    This is why bashing tea partiers is bad politics. It would have been more productive to acknowledge people’s outrage and try to find some common ground. Especially in America, the more you tell people they’re stupid and they should shut up, the more they rebel and become more powerful.

  11. Valissa says:

    Eeeewww, a pubic hare… LOL… very timely 😉

    Coming up on Feb 3rd it’s the Year of the Rabbitt!

    Fortunetellers: Year of the Rabbit not too cuddly

  12. helenk says:

    Holy Cow there really is mystery meat!!!



  13. Three Wickets says:

    Krugman says global commodities inflation may be contributing to Middle East unrest, but it’s not because of Fed easing…more likely the cause is booming Chinese demand, speculative hoarding, and undervalued currency. That’s a mouthful, but alright then.

    • djmm says:

      Food and fuel prices are likely as triggers. Egypt has more population than it can easily support (a problem many places share). Chinese demand and poor harvests are driving food costs.


      • But the 1970s environmentalists were all wrong about food riots, of course.

        They didn’t think about all the other things people would be rioting about in the same riot. Maybe when you actually run out of food, you don’t have the energy to riot.

  14. helenk says:

    This just beautiful. What a lift for Monday.



  15. helenk says:

    This ad appeared in China right before the state visit of the Chinese president. Tell me again how the Chinese respect backtrack.



  16. Three Wickets says:

    Again with the “yes we can.”

  17. helenk says:

    For the people who are tired of the snow and the long winter, I am sorry but Phil can not be bribed to make it go away.



  18. helenk says:

    this is a website that i think people would enjoy.
    the headlines are just plain funny



  19. Three Wickets says:

    Health Care Act ruled unconstitutional.

    • votermom says:


    • WMCB says:

      I particularly liked this part of the decision:

      It is difficult to imagine that a nation which began, at least in part, as the result of opposition to a British mandate giving the East India Company a monopoly and imposing a nominal tax on all tea sold in America would have set out to create a government with the power to force people to buy tea in the first place.

      Yup. By caving to the insurance companies and forcing the purchase of a private product, rather than proposing a tax for a govt service, they screwed the constitutional pooch.

      • votermom says:

        He mentioned tea? Ooooh, burn!!!! LOL.

      • DeniseVB says:

        Judge used Obama’s words against him, d’oh !

        […]In ruling against President Obama‘s health care law, federal Judge Roger Vinson used Mr. Obama‘s own position from the 2008 campaign against him, arguing that there are other ways to tackle health care short of requiring every American to purchase insurance.

        “I note that in 2008, then-Senator Obama supported a health care reform proposal that did not include an individual mandate because he was at that time strongly opposed to the idea, stating that ‘if a mandate was the solution, we can try that to solve homelessness by mandating everybody to buy a house,’” Judge Vinson wrote in a footnote toward the end of the 78-page ruling Monday….[…]

  20. Three Wickets says:

    The Economist trying comedy. Maybe they should stick to their side of the pond.

  21. Three Wickets says:

    Political Blogs Are Ready to Flood Campaign Trail

  22. foxyladi14 says:

    so many States suing over this

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