Republicans

Government shutdown puts thousands of SF veterans' benefits at risk

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More than 7,000 employees in Veterans Benefits Administration offices nationwide were furloughed today (Tues/8), the newest casualty of the federal government shutdown.

As the Republicans in Washington hold the nation hostage over President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, federal employees are leaving their offices in droves. Now the veterans who rely on the federal government for healthcare and education checks have nothing to do but wait on word of their uncertain futures. 

The furlough of veterans benefits workers comes at an especially awful time as they struggle to meet an enormous backlog of health benefit claims, revealed this year by the Berkeley-based Center for Investigative Reporting.

“VA’s ability to make significant progress reducing the disability claims backlog is hampered without the increased productivity gained from overtime for claims processors,” the Veterans Benefits Administration said in a statement released today. The agency has reduced the disability claims backlog by more than 190,000 claims over the last six months, it wrote.  

But even worse, it said that if the government shutdown persists into late October there would be no funding available to supply veterans with their November support checks -- money many rely on for rent and food.

Read more »

Republicans are just plain daft, part 2

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One of the most prosaic lines in film history is in 1974's Godfather II. When Vito Corleone (Robert DeNiro) is asked by Peter Clemenza (Bruno Kirby) if he checked out the package of oily guns Clemenza had left him as the NYPD was hauling Clemenza away, Corleone replies coolly that "I'm not interested in things that don't concern me".

At that point, we realize that the future Don was not a Republican.Read more »

Can Obama really unravel Reagan?

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I like Robert Reich; he's one of the smartest economic thinkers in the country and can explain everything that's wrong with the economy in two minutes. And I really want to believe that he's correct in his latest essay, and that President Obama really is poised to under the Reagan Revolution (or at least, the Reagan Republican Coalition).Read more »

Why the GOP gets away with obstructing Congress

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There's an interesting piece on Calitics talking about what California can teach the nation in terms of ending Republican obstructionism. Robert Cruickshank, as usual, is right on target -- and he points to the real problem in Washington. Republicans in the House no longer worry about losing their seats to Democrats; the GOP has been so good about gerrymandering that only maybe 30 or 40 seats in the entire nation are still competitive. Read more »

Chauvinism: Not a good tool for fighting chauvinism

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I know we're all feeling a little queasy from all the Tampa tidings, but let's remember why we're here.

Mark Morford's column on SFGate on Tuesday should have been another smart, snarky putdown of anti-feminist Republican platforming. But it turned out to be even more of a bummer than Condoleeza Rice hiding her pro-choice-ness under a podium. Read more »

KPFA shows us how to do convention coverage

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I watched and I listened as the Republicans alienated much of America and the TV announcers made fools of themselves and the big newspapers reported what happened without much perspective or criticism. But the best coverage of he GOP convention came from a local outlet: KPFA's Mitch Jeserich, Davey D Cook, and Margaret Prescod had it nailed.Read more »

Dear SFW: HST is dead. And you're not him

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Note to SF Weekly (and the other Village Voice Media papers that are running the same story this week):Read more »

The really bad news about the state budget

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There's no way to put a good spin on the new budget figures released by the Guv. No matter what happens in November, people who need help are going to get screwed in this state. Public schools will lose money. Health-care for the poor will be near collapse. Cities and counties will struggle to preserve the local safety nets. It's just a disaster, and there's no other way to look at it.Read more »

Calvin Trillin: Contraception is the big issue

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Contraception (of all things)

Republicans are bashing birth control,

As candidates far-rightward scurry.

The voters haven't heard such talk in years.

We're going backward in a hurry.

Calvin Trillin: Deadline Poet (The Nation 3/26/2012)

 

How much hot gay tail are the rabid conservative gentlemen of America getting at CPAC?

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Hooray, it's time for our favorite blog post of the year. Every year Wonkette goes to the huge Conservative Political Action Convention in DC, and trolls Craigslist for attendees looking for gay sex. Then Wonkette posts the ads. This installment features Dan Savage scanning the CPAC crowd with Grindr! Check it out here.