Monday, August 20, 2012

Catnip: 8/20/12: The Fog


Every day coming home on the train I'm followed by this wall of fog that slowly covers the Bay area. It's fascinating to see at the ground level, but hard to shoot from a moving train of course. Saturday night, I went into the hills to try and capture it - check out the 1000 px shot of SF being slowly swallowed up. This is the Bay Bridge, that tower sticking up through the cloud is on top of Twin Peaks.

The shoot didn't go exactly as planned - I need to get a tri-pod and remember to take the ISO off of automatic. Faster shutter means very grainy shots when it starts to get dark, so I wasn't thrilled with the results. Will try again if I get the chance.

A few notes to start the week...

Krugman, smash! The professor rips the mask off of the Paul Ryan wonk worship that is currently the favored flavor of the Beltway media. "Ryanomics is and always has been a con game, although to be fair, it has become even more of a con since Mr. Ryan joined the ticket." There's nothing left after Paul gets done. Hello, America, pay attention to this.

E.J. Dionne basically does the same, but in a way that looks towards the big picture on government spending and deficits. The bottom line is this: The Romney-Ryan plan to slash taxes for the rich will greatly exacerbate the debt problem, period. "Despite the fantasies of the trickle-down supply-siders, there is no path to a balanced budget without tax increases. Obama openly supports a tax increase. Romney and Ryan not only oppose higher taxes but also claim they can cut taxes and balance the budget — eventually. If they win, we can look forward to more tax cuts compounding the red ink. Isn’t this what should really concern the deficit hawks?"

The Washington Post agrees with all the above, calling Romney's plan "garbage" in this devastating editorial.

Josh Barro at the Boston Globe puts the Romney-Ryan plan in the stark us vs. them world that the "I got mine" Republicans live in. Who is being divisive?: "Romney understands who Republican base voters are. They skew older, and while they like 'small government' rhetoric, they are not eager for cuts to Medicare and Social Security. That’s why Romney calls for cutting aid to the poor now, and to the old later, at a date when he would no longer be president." The Medicaids story needs to gain more traction, encouraging to see it pop up here and there.

Not sure why the comments of Todd Akin surprise anyone; anti-choicers are always making wild statements to justify their goal of controlling women's bodies. Granted, this was a doozy, but it all plays into the effort to eliminate choice. Ilyse Hogue at The Nation: "Akin's comments appear an awful lot like step one in the GOP's favorite two-step tactic to redefine the world around us: first, more extreme figures voice opinions that would never fly from more politically-palatable ones. The right-wing echo chamber picks up those opinions in the guise of news coverage. Then, the more politically acceptable candidates shift their rhetoric to acknowledge the newly accepted opinion as reality." Shifting the Overton Window once again.

Still, when even Karl Rove has a problem with your statement, you might want to rethink your career path....

More important story on women's health care and family planning services: Romney/Ryan would slash both Title X and Medicaid funding to the point where Planned Parenthood and other clinics that are now serving a substantial population would close down. It's already happening in Texas: "Last year, Gov. Rick Perry (R-Texas) slashed state family planning funds by two-thirds. As a result of those cuts, over 60 clinics (12 of which are Planned Parenthoods) in the Lone Star State have shut their doors, and over one hundred thousand women who previously had access to breast and cervical cancer screenings, STD tests, and birth control have been left without care."

Let's talk about that budget some more, shall we?