Will Solyndra be the GOP’s opening to impeach Obama?

August 31, 2011

A little more than a year ago, I wrote that President Barack Obama would eventually face impeachment charges from Republicans. In the post, I quoted felon-turned-whistleblower Sam Antar, who said this:

“With all the stimulus money going out, the Republicans will eventually find some corruption charge they think will stick.”

Republicans may have something, with the collapse of Solyndra. From ABC News:

Solyndra, a renewable energy firm that became the darling of the Obama Administration, shut the doors to its California headquarters today, raising sharp questions from the administration’s critics about political favoritism in the federal loan program.

“We smelled a rat from the onset,” Republican House Energy and Commerce Committee members Rep. Cliff Stearns and Rep. Fred Upton said in a statement to ABC News of the the $535 million government loan guarantee awarded to Solyndra in 2009.

The manufacturer of rooftop solar panels opened in 2005 and in 2009 became the Obama administration’s first recipient of an half-billion dollar energy loan guarantee meant to help minimize the risk to venture capital firms that were backing the solar start-up. Obama made a personal visit to the factory last year to herald its bright future.

ABC News and the Center for Public Integrity’s iWatch News first reported on questions about the choice of Solyndra for the loan in May after the Department of Energy disclosed it was being forced to restructure its loan package for the company, which was showing early signs of financial distress. One of Solyndra’s major investors was George Kaiser, an Oklahoma billionaire who raised between $50,000 and $100,000 for Obama during the 2008 election.

Following the ABC News and iWatch News reports, the House Energy and Commerce Committee opened an investigation into the loan, which Stearns and Upton said today was “suspect from day one.”

Will this be enough to bring impeachment charges? Who knows? A lot depends on whether Republicans are confident they can defeat Obama in 2012. But don’t think this is being overlooked by the GOP. After all, it seems as though Bill Clinton was impeached for less.


The U.S. is the Greatest Country in the World™ - except for babies

August 31, 2011

There can be no doubt that the U.S. the richest, most powerful nation in the history of the world.  But a baby has a better chance of survival in Malaysia. From USA Today:

The study shows that newborn babies in countries including Malaysia, Cuba, and Poland now have a better chance of survival than those born in the United States. “It’s not that things are worse in the United States than before, it’s that the U.S. isn’t making progress like other countries,” Lawn said.

Because of improvements in infant care in some countries, newborns in Qatar, Croatia and the United Arab Emirates now die at about the same rate as those in the United States, the figures show.

The United States now trails 40 other countries when it comes to risk of newborn death with a newborn death rate of 4.3 per 1,000 live births. In 1990 the United States had the 28th lowest risk.

Zygotes matter in the U.S. Babies seems to be on their own.


I may not love Israel as much as Glenn Beck says he does …

August 30, 2011

… but, unlike Beck and his Christian Zionist pals, I’m not praying for an apocalypse that will either convert Jews to Christianity or send them straight to Hell.


I lost 12 pounds from my anus! Ask me how!

August 30, 2011

Or ask anti-Gay Puerto Rican Republican Senator Roberto Arango. His hind quarters are apparently in tip-top shape, as well. And he has some free time on his hands.


Rampaging Panda overtakes Arizona

August 30, 2011

Don’t look now, but here it comes:

Only in Arizona.

HT Dvorak


Recessions no longer matter

August 30, 2011

John Aravosis had a sit down with Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz the other day. Stiglitz, like the majority of non-Randian economists isn’t hopeful that jobs are on the horizon:

“There are some people who believe we are already in a recession. It’s almost unambiguously the case that growth is too anemic to create enough jobs … so the jobs deficit is growing. Whether it is growing in appearance or in a hidden way is again not clear.”

Whether or not the U.S. economy is in a recession or is heading for a recession makes little if any difference any longer. The biggest corporations and the financial industry are making money. That’s what matters. From Business Insider:

U.S. corporate profits and efficiency are getting absurd.

On Friday we saw record quarterly profits of $1,450 billion, making up a record share of GDP at 10.1%. We’re also at record corporate efficiency of $15,278.72 — up 22.3% from last year — according to Sageworks Inc.

That last one says it all. Rampant job cuts and salary cuts, with new responsibilities for old workers, during the recession turned corporations into profit-making machines. Stimulative policies from the government and the Federal Reserve helped plenty. New technology also helps with efficiency.

Unfortunately there are no signs that corporations are turning revenue into jobs.

From Felix Salmon:

Kathleen Madigan had an important post on Friday, showing financial profits roaring back to more than 30% of all domestic US profits. As she says, “that’s an amazing share given that the sector accounts for less than 10% of the value added in the economy” — and makes it “hard for banks to cry poverty” when it comes to things like debit-card interchange legislation.

Madigan gave us the percentage chart, which shows the finance industry taking an even greater share of total corporate profits than it did during most of the boom year of 2006.

The United States has been dedicated to supply-side economics for more than three decades now. The end result is where we are at now - high-unemployment, lower wages and large profits for those at the very top. This is not a bug. It is a feature of the system.

When unemployment can stay at more than 9 percent and GDP can flounder for this amount of time as corporate and financial profits soar, whether or not the U.S. is in a recession is completely meaningless.

The current economic situation in the U.S. is not an aberration, nor is it a bump in the road. It is the plan.


Loving Jesus makes Tim Tebow a bad quarterback

August 29, 2011

Ok, not really. The fact is that Tim Tebow is not ready to be a starting quarterback in the NFL. He may never be. This really isn’t much of a slam, because a really, really, really small percentage of Americans are ready to be a starting quarterback in the NFL.

Don’t tell that to some Christians, tho. Despite Christianity dominating American society, they see Tebow’s treatment as pure religious bigotry. From Rick Reilly:

Randy Cross doesn’t know me. Wouldn’t know me if I stuck my thumb in his chili. So why did he just accuse me of being anti-Christian??

Two weeks ago, I wrote that Tim Tebow is not cutting it in the NFL. According to sources I quoted within the Denver Broncos, he is not within a plastic spork of cutting it. Doesn’t mean he won’t someday. It’s just that right now, the thousands of guys wearing his jersey in the stands have as good a chance of starting as he does.

Wasn’t personal. I like the kid, just not as my quarterback. Or anybody’s. Not yet.

But Tuesday, CBS Sports NFL analyst Randy Cross said that media like me are bashing Tebow simply because he’s openly Christian.

Come again?

Oh, those Christians. They certainly are a persecuted bunch.


Michele Bachmann takes the Lord’s name in vain

August 29, 2011

Rep. Michele Bachmann’s (R-MN) presidential campaign says critics are making much ado about nothing when it comes to her viral quote stating last week’s East Coast earthquake and hurricane was a message from God to overspending DC politicians.

“Obviously she was saying it in jest,” campaign spokesperson Alice Stewart told TPM in a statement.

Isn’t Bachmann aware that G-d is no joking matter?


It’s God, trust us

August 28, 2011

It’s time the U.S. takes “In God We Trust” off its currency and instead puts “It’s God, Trust Us” on it.


Today in Dog

August 27, 2011

Honey, where’s the remote?

Have I been digging? Why do you ask?

Just try and resist.


I’m a winner!

August 26, 2011

This is the first thing I’ve won since winning an Alaska Press Club award in 1999. There are just so many people I’d like to thank. But they didn’t really help me with writing that tweet, so screw ‘em.

Follow Rick Klein on Twitter at @Rickklein.


Shark hoax or not, It’ll still freak out my sharkapohobic wife

August 26, 2011

Sure, this photo is a hoax, but it’ll still freak out my wife, so I’ll post it anyway.

Here’s where the shark came from, BTW:


Please Embargo This Libya Blog Post For 6 Months

August 25, 2011

Sadly, rampant corruption, petty squabbles and interference from neighbors have led to a Libya still in chaos. Let’s give it six more months.


My Love Letter to Jim Carrey

August 25, 2011

Jim, if I were any gayer, I’d marry you. But since that can’t happen, could you denounce your insane and factually wrong anti-vax statements. Vaccines don’t cause autism, Jim. Saying they do hurts children.


Leezza, Leezza, Leezza

August 25, 2011

Now that everyone seems horribly grossed out about Muammar Gaddafi’s puppy love for Condoleezza Rice, I think now may be the time to quietly dismantle my shrine to Madeleine Albright.


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