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Andy and all of your favorite progressive talk programming will be returning to Jacksonville soon.


Sarah Needs A Teleprompter…

Taking the lead of conservative hate radio, Sarah Palin has, over the past year, berated President Obama’s use of the teleprompter. She has constantly and consistently mocked the President’s use of a teleprompter, conveniently ignoring the fact that almost all public officials use the teleprompter when making prepared public statements.

After criticizing President Obama as a “charismatic character with a teleprompter” at the Tea Party Nation Convention in Nashville, it became quickly clear who needs a teleprompter. And it is not President Obama, who demonstrated considerable non-teleprompter assisted skill in his recent meeting with Republicans and his subsequent town halls.

Mrs. Palin approached the lectern at the Tea Party convention with her script in hand. It looked to be about a half inch thick stack of a prepared statement. When she began speaking, it was clear that she was reading from her script. She was, almost sounding like a robot, reading the entire speech. She was looking down at the script during most of the speech in a obvious effort to not lose her place. She was reading, not from a side stage teleprompter, but instead from a script on  the lectern.

Then she did it, she lost her place in the script. She blurted out:  “The world looks to Alaska as that shining beacon of hope.” She lost her place in the script more than once and Sarah’s frustration and embarrassment showed when her face began turning red and her voice began to weaken.  It was clear that she was unprepared and not very confident.

To her credit, Mrs. Palin did seem to recover as the speech went on. She became more competent after her early stumbles – especially with her favorite zinger against President Obama. But then the question and answer session began after her reading of the speech.

The questions for the question and answer session, according to the emcee, were submitted online by Tea Partiers at a social networking site – your favorite gathering place for adolescents.

After a couple of questions, Sarah Palin looked down at her hand where she had scribbled some  notes. What? Was she coached by Willow and her teen age Facebook friends? Is Sarah Palin 14  years old – reading robotically with a cheat sheet on her hand?

I am sure that FOX News is putting a teleprompter in that studio they are building for Mrs. Palin in her Alaskan home. This way, they figure, she can look in the general direction of the cameras and not get caught reading her palm again. It should be clear to FOX that Sarah Palin needs a teleprompter as she has trouble reading a written script from a lectern.

Sarah could use a teleprompter to help prevent her looking as amateur as she did at the Tea Party Convention. But she will never be able to use one during public appearances. She has ruined it for herself. How could she ever face the public, using a teleprompter, when her entire political platform consists of criticizing President Obama for using one?

Why support for health insurance reform is waning…

Republicans are already jumping on the new NBC-WSJ poll numbers showing more people disapprove of health care reform than support it. This is evidence that, the more Democrats allow conservatives to water down the plan, the less popular it becomes.

Very early in the debate, when single payer was discussed, the plan had wide ranging support. When single payer was replaced by public option, it began losing support but support still remained above 73% consistently.

Recently, when the public option was replaced by a Medicare buy-in, it lost even more support.

Now that Democrats have allowed conservatives to water it down even more by removing the Medicare buy-in, it is less popular than ever. For the first time, the polling data is showing that more people oppose it than support it.

The obvious conclusion is that the polling data shows that the people have spoken loudly in support of a public option and they reject a plan that has been watered down by Republicans and some Democratic conservatives.

The more that the idea becomes “privatized,” the less people like it. The more that the plan becomes “Republicanized,” the less they like it. The more that Republican ideas influence the plan, the less popular it is. And the more that the idea strays from the Progressive idea it began with, the less popular it is among the American people.

Republicans would rather do nothing on this issue and polling data shows that doing nothing is less popular than single payer. It was a Republican House and Senate that was nicknamed “the do-nothing Congress.” The people have spoken loud and clear, they want health care reform but not the kind of reform that Republicans are pushing which is no reform at all. Americans want Progressive health care reform, not reform watered down by conservatives.

November Vigil: Close The School Of The Americas

We need to step up the pressure on lawmakers to revoke the funding for The School Of The Americas. this is a terrorist training camp located just north of Jacksonville inside of Fort Benning up in Georgia.

Since it moved to Ft Benning in 1983, after being kicked out of Panama, the School Of The Americas has trained a hundred thousand Latin American soldiers in counterinsurgency techniques, sniper training, commando and psychological warfare, military intelligence and interrogation tactics.

The school has trained 11 dictators who have returned to their countries and carried out mass murders, disappearances, rapes, revocations of civil rights, the list goes on and on.

It may be true that the US cannot predict what the graduates will do with their expert military training after graduation. But the facts show that it is clear that graduates are using their training to undermine other governments and to commit human rights violations on a mass scale.

I don’t want America represented this way in other parts of the world.

Up until the Bush Administration’s strangulation of the freedom of information and transparency, the list of graduates and their country of origin were public information.

Recently, the courts struck down part of the Bush secrecy program surrounding the graduates of the School of the Americas, but they did not go far enough. They are still classifying the names and country of origin of graduates from 2004 through 2008. All along, going back as far as the history of this school is concerned, the graduate list was public.

This makes us wonder exactly who was trained at the school during these still classified 5 years during the Bush Administration. One has to wonder…who attended the school and where were they from during these “missing years” in the record. What is the Pentagon trying to hide?

It is time to demand the names and country of origin of all of the graduates and it is past time for lawmakers to revoke the funding.

Starting this week, it’s the annual vigil to close the School Of The Americas at the gates of Ft Benning outside of Columbus Georgia.

From November 20-22, 2009, thousands will vigil at the gates of Fort Benning, Georgia, to stand up for justice, to shut down the School of the Americas and to end the oppressive U.S. foreign policy that the school represents.

Please visit School Of The Americas Watch to learn more.