Tornado Monday

At least 50 tornadoes hit the Midwest yesterday, destroying much of Joplin, Missouri. Death toll is at 89 and expected to rise. Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has activated the National Guard. Rescue workers will face more severe weather today, and may see large hail, wind gusts in excess of 60 mph, torrential downpours, and additional tornadoes. Help can be channeled, as always, through the Red Cross.

In Europe, Iceland’s most active volcano Grimsvotn  is spewing ash but meteorologists do not expect major air travel impact. No one who happens to be making a royal progress across Europe will get stranded there. Bummer.

In non-nature (unnatural?) news, Tom Tim Pawlenty* officially got into the 2012 race. This will probably cut into Mitt’s chunk of voters, imo. Also, Three Wickets points out this article that shows that Jeff Immelt  hard at work as Jobs Czar – Overseas Jobs Czar, that is.

Open thread.

*aka another guy with  nice coif and well-creased pants

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94 Responses to Tornado Monday

  1. votermom says:

    Gotta run do errands before the severe weather gets here.

  2. Valissa says:

    Great post by Scott Brown!

    Why I don’t back Ryan Medicare plan

    Although he makes many good points, I think this one is best and shows he cares much more about The People than The Wealthy. Also, he wants to get re-elected 😉

    Why can’t I go along with the Ryan Medicare plan?

    First, I fear that as health inflation rises, the cost of private plans will outgrow the government premium support— and the elderly will be forced to pay ever higher deductibles and co-pays. Protecting those who have been counting on the current system their entire adult lives should be the key principle of reform.

    • ralphb says:

      There is an issue here though. Unless I am mistaken, written into the current law, are automatic cuts when Medicare can no longer pay the bills. That kind of means we’re screwed no matter what but the Ryan plan does at least try to do something about it.

      While I don’t like the Ryan plan for the same reasons I don’t like Obamacare, something has to be done and he is the only one with a suggestion on the table now.

      The basic problem is the cost of health care in the US is so much higher than everywhere else. It’s gonna have to be brought down in some way, either though lower cost per services or less services. Magic dust is in short supply.

      • Valissa says:

        “While I don’t like the Ryan plan for the same reasons I don’t like Obamacare, something has to be done and he is the only one with a suggestion on the table now.”

        Yes, I find it VERY interesting that it’s the only “suggestion on the table” right now. Sounds like an Overton Window maneuver to me. Brown implies in his article that other types of plans are being considered. I’m going to guess that there are at least 3 or 4 major options to Ryan’s plan that the congress critters and bandying about amongst each other but not sharing with the MSM or public for all sorts of reasons, mostly strategic as they have to share out all the earmarks and behind-the-scene agreements. Also,they don’t want a plan attacked or praised prematurely in the public so that it get’s challenged by public opinion (that’s why they don’t tell the public very much and what they do is filtered via their MSM puppets). They want to negotiate and compromise quietly amongst themselves and then present the solution, which will naturally be kinder and gentler than Ryan’s severity. That’s how the Overton Window works in our oligarchy.

        • ” They want to negotiate and compromise quietly amongst themselves and then present the solution, which will naturally be kinder and gentler than Ryan’s severity. ”

          Ya, good cop vs bad cop.

        • Valissa, on May 23, 2011 at 10:17 am said:

          VAlissa, this is such a great post, I’d like to copy it over at May I?

      • DeniseVB says:

        It’s called “debate”, and between the Ocare and the Ryan plan, I’m sure there’s a reasonable consensus ? They (uhm, our reps?) have to put partisanship aside, kick Big Pharma and Insurance to the curb, and decide what’s best for We The People. ya know, the peons 😉

        I’m just so peeved AARP got waivers when they were the first to throw “granny” off the clift to knock off their supplement competition.

        • ralphb says:

          Yes. It says a lot about Obamacare that 7 entire states and 1345 or so of the Administration’s closest friends and contributors all got waivers from it, so far.

          I get the feeling it stinks worse than I thought, if that’s even possible!

    • Here’s why Bill Clinton doesn’t back it.

      Clinton told Ryan that if he ever wanted to talk about it, he should “give me a call.” Ryan said he would. Watch it here.

      Democrats make no bones about why they believe they won in a solidly Republican district – voter anger at Paul Ryan’s controversial plan to restructure Medicare.

      “It was about Medicare,” Clinton said during a speech to the debt forum minutes before he met Ryan back stage. Clinton was referring to Ryan’s controversial budget plan, passed by the House this year, which would transform Medicare for those under the age of 55.

      “You shouldn’t draw the conclusion that the New York race means that nobody can do anything solve the rising Medicare costs,” said during his speech. “I just don’t agree with that. I think you should draw the conclusion that the people made a judgment that this proposal in the Republican is not the right one. I agree with that, but I’m afraid that the Democrats will draw the conclusion that because Congressman Ryan’s proposal, I think, is not the best one, that we shouldn’t do anything and I completely disagree with that.”

  3. DeniseVB says:

    So sad, 3/4ths of Joplin, MO is gone 😦 I grieve for the victims and families. I’m not religious, but if prayers help…….they’ve got mine.

  4. DeniseVB says:

    The death toll in Joplin is rising, meanwhile….


    • Valissa says:

      Sad but true… however “let them drink beer” doesn’t really make the point as well as the photo 🙂

      The Weather Channel has pretty much become the disaster channel recently. Very tough tornado season this year.

  5. votermom says:

    Compare this view of BO’s WORMing before AIPAC to our MSM’s coverage which all says “warm reception”, “applause”, blah blah.

    There was tepid applause and a couple of isolated boos from the crowd of almost 10,000 members of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, better known as Aipac, the premier and most hardline mainstream group in the powerful pro-Israel lobby in the United States.
    The reception was one of intense scepticism. A vast majority of delegates felt that Mr Obama had a need to explain himself after his comments that a Middle East peace deal should be based on Israel’s 1967 border incorporating agreed land swaps with the Palestinians.
    But if they thought that the American president was going to take back his words in Thursday’s speech at the State Department’s Foggy Bottom headquarters, then they were sorely mistaken.
    Wagging his finger repeatedly, Mr Obama adopted the manner of a schoolmaster frustrated that his pupils were too dim or inattentive to pay attention to what he had said.
    Rather than even acknowledge the artlessness of his 1967 comments, or the fact that he had not prepared the Israeli Government for what he was about to say, his tone was of the “I’m sorry you feel that way” variety of non-apology.

    • Valissa says:

      I have always foun the “I-P” problem to be sad, tragic, pathetic, stupid and a great example of how hard it is for very different values sytems and beliefs to co-exist when there is also an ancient unresolved territorial struggle. There are no real signs of a growing desire for peace at this time, they are all very angry. Until then, the situation will not change.

      • votermom says:

        Not just a desire for peace, but a real stake in keeping the peace.

        • Valissa says:

          Honk! Last year a read a 700 page book on the history of “War in Human Civilization” by one of Israel’s top military historians by Azar Gat. A truly brilliant and surprisingly easy to read book that encompasses much more than just the evolution of war strategy (also history of economics, cultural change, and archeology-anthropology). He had a real gift for getting to the crux of what starts wars and what ends them. He said that typically either a territory is conquered and assimilated (there is a “winner”) or the groups involved in fighting/competing finally get tired of war (economic and social costs) enough to start investing in peace instead. Naturally those who have the most pwoer get the largest stake, but there must be some sort of power sharing agreement. And as you pointed out votermom, that requires having a stake in keeping the peace.

        • votermom says:

          Sounds like an interesting book! I will keep an eye out for it.

        • Valissa says:

          Apparently when Azar Gat was a young boy growing up in Israel under the constant threat of war he became very intent on learning all he could about it. He wanted to learn why humans go to war so that maybe he could figure out how to have less of it. He workd on the book on and off for over 10 years because he had to research so many subject areas. He comes off in a very conversational and readable tone and except for a few sections of relatively dryer details of military history it moves along well. It took me about 3 months to work my way through it.

          As I was reading I started to see how economics and politics are so much like war. It becomes easy to see CEOs as tribal warlords seeking to increase territory and resources and to see that political campaigns are much like military campaigns.

          Hope I’m not being too wonky today.

      • catarina says:

        sad and tragic, perhaps.

        but Israel’s fight for it’s very survival and right to exist is hardly pathetic or stupid.

        no further comment.

      • catarina says:

        PS vids don’t count as comments

        • votermom says:

          Great speech. And no teleprompter.
          I completely agree with this:

          And events in our region are finally opening people’s eyes to a simple truth. Events in the region are opening people’s eyes to a simple truth: The problems of the region are not rooted in Israel. The remarkable scenes
          we’re witnessing in town squares across the Middle East and North Africa are occurring for a simple reason: People want freedom. They want progress. They want a better life.

          For many of the peoples of the region, the 20th century skipped them by. And now 21st century technology is telling them what they missed out on. You remember that desperate food vendor in Tunis? Why did he set himself on fire? Not because of Israel. He set himself on fire because of decades of indignity, decades of intolerable corruption.

          And the millions who poured into the streets of Tehran, Tunis, Cairo, Sanaa, Benghazi, Damascus, they’re not thinking about Israel. They’re thinking of freedom. They’re yearning for opportunity. They’re yearning for hope for themselves and for their children. So it’s time to stop blaming Israel for all the region’s problems.

          Let me stress one thing. Peace between Israelis and Palestinians is a vital interest for us. It would be the realization of a powerful and eternal dream. But it is not a panacea for the endemic problems of the Middle East. It will not give women in some Arab countries the right to drive a car. It will not prevent churches from being bombed. It will not keep journalists out of jail.

          What will change this? One word: Democracy – real, genuine democracy. And by democracy, I don’t just mean elections. I mean freedom of speech, freedom of press, freedom of assembly, the rights for women, for gays, for minorities, for everyone. What the people of Israel want is for the people of the Middle East to have what you have in America, what we have in Israel — democracy. So it’s time to recognize this basic truth. Israel is not what’s wrong with the Middle East. Israel is what’s right about the Middle East.

        • Three Wickets says:

          He just got done with his speech to Congress. Powerful, clear and earnest.

        • votermom says:

          And still no teleprompter. Now he’s just trying to make BeerO look bad.

          Kidding aside, despite Bibi getting a lot of applause from Congress, if BeerO gets re-elected and Hillary isn’t SoS, I think Israel will be SOL.

    • votermom says:

      Also, apparently I am not the only one who gets this vibe:

      “None of my [U.S.] Facebook friends said anything about Obama’s speech,” she explained, “while here in Israel we were all extremely worked up over it. I could not understand how they do not react, do not try to defend us, the State of Israel.”

      I started to feel that in the U.S., it is not considered cool to defend Israel. No celebrity stood up for Israel, except for a few Christians. No Jewish American leader made his voice heard.”

      Wake Up Call to U.S. Jews by YouTube Poetess

      • ralphb says:

        She seems correct to me. We are so shallow here that being cool seems to trump far too many things.

        • I don;t know why the US Jewish leaders are keeping quiet. But for some of us non-Jews, the issues are just too obscure and complicated to judge.

        • votermom says:

          bemused_leftist, I have to confess that for me it is not that obscure. I have friends & family who belong to a minority religion that is mostly banned and discriminated against throughout the middle-east, and their religion is accepted, and indeed has its center, in Israel, even before there was an Israel. They were there and Israel accepted them. That religion was founded in the ME and has a lot of ethnically Persian and Arab members who face persecution in their own countries.
          And then there is the status of women.
          So I see it as a choice between encouraging and favoring a tolerant and democratic state vs favoring and encouraging states which are intolerant and oppressive. I want the intolerant and oppressive states to reform first, rather than granting them demands now that could very well result in the further persecution of non-Muslims and the oppression of more women in the ME.

        • ralphb says:

          Here, Here VM!

    • djmm says:

      Interesting analysis. I found this perceptive:

      “In this environment, the prospect of serious peace negotiations is as dim as ever, but Mr Obama appeared to feel that his own personality, political skills and success against the al-Qaeda leader would be enough to resolve what President Harry Truman once described as “the 100-year headache”.”

      Of course. And ponies for all.


    • votermom says:

      bo and bibi cartoon (even funnier because of the limo that couldn’t)
      walking bibi down the garden path

  6. ralphb says:

    This is just priceless. Obama’s limo gets stuck on a speed bump and they can’t get it off. 🙂

    • Valissa says:

      Wah, wah, wah… cue the violins!

      Scott Brown has to get re-elected in Mass, which like all the New England states has an above average number of senior voters. Brown has always played the percentages in his votes. This may be a very blue state but we also have the highest number of independent/”unaffiliated” voters in the US. He said when he ran for office that he was going to be an independent voice, and would not kow-tow to the Republican leadership all the time, but would focus on MA issues foremost, and that’s why the independents supported him. The number of actual Republicans in MA is pretty small.

      • ralphb says:

        On Medicare issues, this is not necessarily true. With automatic cuts built into the system that will be much harsher than Ryan’s plan. The question is not does it run out of money on it’s current trajectory. The question is does it do it in 2024 or in 2015 or sooner?

        They want to negotiate and compromise quietly amongst themselves and then present the solution, which will naturally be kinder and gentler than Ryan’s severity. That’s how the Overton Window works in our oligarchy.

        I think you may underestimate the craven cowardice of our current government.

        • Valissa says:

          “I think you may underestimate the craven cowardice of our current government.”

          Honestly Ralph, I can’t believe you said that. I’ve been very clear how I feel about our corrupt system. it’s a historic fact that we live in a kleptocracy- plutocracy-oligarchy. What passes for leadership today is pathetic, and spines seem overly flexible… but that’s reality. That is why I no longer evaluate political strategies based on ideology. I left the ideology bus a long time ago. Now I evaluate politicians by their power and money strategies, and how they handle their propaganda machines. Also I appreciate the absurdity of the whole political game, and the whole pro-wrestling style punditocracy. Political principles??? ROTFLMAO… no, I don’t expect those any more so I am rarely disappointed. Cynicism and humor are the key to mental health 😉

        • ralphb says:

          We are in agreement then 🙂

  7. propertius says:

    How long before Obama starts spelling his name with an apostrophe?

  8. Jeebus that’s bad. Let’s have some funky music to lift spirits:

  9. lisadawn82 says:

    Gotta love organized religion and Republicans….

  10. 1539days says:


    I’m guessing Pawlenty isn’t going to set the world on fire, given that you called him Tom instead of Tim.

  11. ralphb says:

    Rand Paul to hold up the Patriot Act renewal …

    Freshman Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), a vocal critic of the counter-terrorism surveillance law, threatened Monday to “drag out” the process if Reid fails to hold votes on some of the nine amendments Paul introduced or co-sponsored on Monday. Paul, a libertarian-minded tea-party senator, noted that Reid had promised earlier this year to set aside a week’s worth of debate on the bill and allow votes on amendments.

    Hmmm. He may be worth something after all?

    • Valissa says:

      Any congresscritter who stands up against the creeping bi-partisan authoritarian powers of the state instead of sucking up to it is to be commended! We may not be able to stop this ongoing process, but roadblocks, setbacks and obstructions to it are very welcome. Not so sure why so many liberals think government is their friend as much as they do (all large institutions tend toward oppression)… the words liberal and libertarian both have their roots in the word LIBERTY and anti-authoritarianism.

  12. 1539days says:

    Netanyahu was apparently the first world leaders to express solidarity with the victimes of the tornadoes in Missouri. Yet again, Obama had to play catch up and get a shout out loaded into his teleprompter some time later.

    I can imagine the MSNBC headlines now. Israel PM dares to preempt the Lightbringer’s sympathy.

  13. Three Wickets says:

    This is quite funny, and revealing.

    President Obama Has No Idea What Year It Is

    • ralphb says:


    • ralphb says:

      Love this comment

      He has very Reagan-esque handwriting. And apparently the same memory.

      • votermom says:

        Time for an MRI!
        Edit to add: Or maybe he already has had an mri & cat scan … has he ever released his medical records?

        • Erica says:

          He released a one page summary–actually a one paragraph summary. I am asked to do more work to get a kid an ultrasound, so I was not impressed.

          It’s likely he could have had those tests right on AFI–they have a full operating suite and probably a full complement of imaging machines, too.

        • votermom says:

          We only saw the date flub because it happened outside the USA. And the msm will be careful to gloss over it.

          Imagine if W or Hillary or Palin had made such a stupid mistake – can you imagine Tweety & Maddow not talking about it 24/7?

      • votermom says:

        This comment from a Hot Air made me LOL.

        No wonder he doesn’t remember Reverend Wright’s racist rants.

  14. ralphb says:

    From Hot Air, O hoses up his toast to the Queen.

    Protocol, apparently, requires the toastmaster to wait until after “God Save the Queen” plays and then begin the toast. But the almighty O waits for no sovereign, so he launched straight into his shpiel. To which I say, good for him. What else was the American revolution about, if not the right of the president to half-ass some formulaic niceties about the British monarch? He should have punctuated it with a weary “whatever” and downed the glass in one gulp.

    This is why he doesn’t get invited to weddings, guys.

  15. ralphb says:

    votermom, you may have been right about a July 4th announcement… 🙂

    Palin’s Secret Weapon: New Film to Premiere in June

    “This film is a call to action for a campaign like 1976: Reagan vs. the establishment,” Bannon told RealClearPolitics. “Let’s have a good old-fashioned brouhaha.”

    RealClearPolitics was recently given an exclusive screening of a rough cut of the now finished film, which Bannon designed, in part, to help catapult Palin from the presidential afterthought she has become in the eyes of many pundits directly to the front lines of the 2012 GOP conversation.

  16. Valissa says:

    IWhy was I NOT surprised this morning to read that Hillary was also at the state dinner and an important part of this trip? If you want to see her at the dinner check out this link…

    The Queen’s State Dinner

    Hillary is sitting next to Prince Charles, and you can catch a few glimpses of her outfit. When Obama speaks after the Queen start things off, he appears to be reading from notes (as the Queen was) and yet he still swings his head side-to-side in that annoying fashion as if he was reading off a teleprompter.

    Other important stuff that Hillary is doing over there:

    Hillary Clinton and William Hague stress on US-UK bond

    And here’s an interesting tidbit on Hillary that I didn;t see anywhere else:

    A week in review

    Clinton addresses Latin America relations: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met in a private dinner with the former presidents of Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Peru, Panama and El Salvador last week. The dinner was held in an effort to improve the international relations between the U.S. and Latin America.

    • votermom says:

      Her outfit looks great! You can see a bit of it here too at the start, she is walking behind MO.

      I wonder if Hillary is headesking or LOLing at gaffeOrama.

      • 1539days says:

        If she headdesked every time he made a gaffe, her head would be covered in bruises.

        • votermom says:

          And she does look remarkably cheerful!
          So we will go with LOLing.

        • Valissa says:

          I’ll bet Hillary often finds Obama amusing in his amateurness… how else could she deal with him? I’m guessing Sarkozy and at least a few others feel the same way about him. Why waste prescious energy being annoyed or peeved at “the precious” 🙂

      • Valissa says:

        Thanks for the heads up on a more complete view of her gown – very fine! Did you (or anyone) happen to catch a photo of her luncheon outfit? I read some stupid fashonista column about how awesome Michelle’s outfit’s were on the trip (major brown nosing, LOL), how (even better) Kate’s luncheon outfit was (yet more brown nosing 😉 ), and that Hillary did not wear a skirt or dress (per protocol, sigh…) but some kind of pantsuit with 3/4 length pants that the fashonista disapproved of (no photo, though).

        • Three Wickets says:

          If Princess Beatrice can wear a figure eight on her head, Hillary can wear whatever the hell she wants on her hips.

  17. ralphb says:

    There’s A Whole Bunch Of New Evidence That The Economy Is Slowing Down

    And there’s a slide show with the reasons. This should give incumbents increased heartburn.

  18. Karma says:

    Japanese engineers are coming out of retirement to work at the nuclear facility…..

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