2011 International Year of Chemistry

The year 2011 has been designated by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) as the International Year of Chemistry (IYC; see IYC 2011).  This will provide those in chemistry and related disciplines with a unique opportunity to (in the words of the official IYC site) “celebrate the achievements of chemistry and its contributions to the well-being of humankind.”

Formula for chocolate

Obama Biden


88 thoughts on “2011 International Year of Chemistry

  1. WH

    Friday Jan. 7, 2011

    All Times Eastern

    7:00 AM
    8:00 AM
    9:00 AM
    9:45 AM

    Pres Obama receives the daily presidential briefing.
    10:00 AM
    10:15 AM

    Pres Obama meets with senior advisers.
    11:00 AM

    R Gibbs briefs the press.
    11:20 AM

    Pres Obama tours Thompson Creek Manufacturing in Maryland.
    11:35 AM

    Pres Obama delivers remarks on the monthly employment report and make economic personnel announcements.
    12:00 PM
    1:00 PM
    2:00 PM
    3:00 PM
    4:00 PM
    5:00 PM

  2. The International Year of Chemistry 2011

    The International Year of Chemistry 2011 (IYC 2011) is a worldwide celebration of the achievements of chemistry and its contributions to the well-being of humankind. Under the unifying theme “Chemistry—our life, our future,” IYC 2011 will offer a range of interactive, entertaining, and educational activities for all ages. The Year of Chemistry is intended to reach across the globe, with opportunities for public participation at the local, regional, and national level.

    The goals of IYC2011 are to increase the public appreciation of chemistry in meeting world needs, to encourage interest in chemistry among young people, and to generate enthusiasm for the creative future of chemistry. The year 2011 will coincide with the 100th anniversary of the Nobel Prize awarded to Madame Marie Curie—an opportunity to celebrate the contributions of women to science. The year will also be the 100th anniversary of the founding of the International Association of Chemical Societies, providing a chance to highlight the benefits of international scientific collaboration.

    IYC 2011 events will emphasize that chemistry is a creative science essential for sustainability and improvements to our way of life. Activities, such as lectures, exhibits, and hands-on experiments, will explore how chemical research is critical for solving our most vexing global problems involving food, water, health, energy, transportation, and more.

    In addition, the Year of Chemistry will help enhance international cooperation by serving as a focal point or information source for activities by national chemical societies, educational institutions, industry, governmental, and non-governmental organizations.

    For more information about the goals, activities, administration, and timeline of IYC 2011, please download the IYC Prospectus.

    For the entire article: http://www.chemistry2011.org/about-iyc/introduction

    • Background

      The concept of IYC 2011 started with the recognition among IUPAC executives that a number of scientific disciplines have achieved significant benefits from securing designation by the United Nations of an international year pertaining to their field of study. The idea of holding a year of chemistry was first discussed in 2006, during the April meeting of the IUPAC Executive Committee. Following that meeting, a task group was formed to secure the designation by UNESCO of an International Year of Chemistry. The project led by the IUPAC Committee on Chemistry Education, was successfully completed when, in April 2008, the Executive Board of UNESCO endorsed the proposal for proclamation by the United Nations of 2011 as the International Year of Chemistry.

      Read more about that project at the IUPAC site.

    • International Year of Chemistry


      UN declares 2011 as International Year of Chemistry
      Dec 30, 2008

      New York, Paris, 30 December 2008 – The 63rd General Assembly of the United Nations has adopted a resolution proclaiming 2011 as International Year of Chemistry, placing UNESCO and the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) at the helm of the event.

      Ethiopia submitted the U.N. resolution calling for the Year, which will celebrate the achievements of chemistry and its contributions to the well-being of humanity. The Year will also draw attention to the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development 2005-2014. National and international activities carried out during 2011 will emphasize the importance of chemistry in sustaining natural resources.

      Chemistry is fundamental to our understanding of the world and the cosmos. Moreover, molecular transformations are central to the production of food, medicines, fuel, and countless manufactured and extracted products. Through the Year, the world will celebrate the art and science of chemistry, and its essential contributions to knowledge, to environmental protection and to economic development.

      For the entire article: http://www.chemistry2011.org/about-iyc/news/un-declaration/

      Life in a Chemical World

      March 1, 2009 by Peter Mahaffy

      Can you imagine life without the art and science of chemistry? Can you imagine a world without public appreciation and understanding of the chemistry involved in producing food, medicine, sustainable energy, clean water, manufactured products and climate change solutions?

      As CIC members, we will soon have the opportunity of a lifetime to catalyze imaginative thinking by chemists, students and the general public about what it’s like to live in a chemical world. The United Nations has just declared 2011 as the International Year of Chemistry and it will be up to each of us in Canadian industry, government laboratories, universities and schools to seize this opportunity to help our colleagues and neighbours understand the many links between chemical reactivity and human activity.

      For the entire article: http://www.chemistry2011.org/about-iyc/news/life-in-a-chemical-world/

    • NSF 10-072
      Dear Colleague Letter: International Year of Chemistry (IYC)

      The year 2011 has been designated by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) as the International Year of Chemistry (IYC; see http://www.chemistry2011.org/). This will provide those in chemistry and related disciplines with a unique opportunity to (in the words of the official IYC site) “celebrate the achievements of chemistry and its contributions to the well-being of humankind.”

      More than celebrate, however, this is also an opportunity to communicate those achievements and contributions. In recognition of this opportunity, we would like to remind the community of the availability of small supplements to existing awards for creative ideas to enhance broader impacts via “out-of-the-box” approaches to research dissemination.

      For the entire article: http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2010/nsf10072/nsf10072.jsp

    • Like, Share, Discover: Facebook For Scientists

      4/18/11 by CURT NICKISCH- WBUR

      A few years ago, while he was doing research at Harvard, Ijad Madisch could not figure out why his experiment wasn’t working. His adviser didn’t know what was wrong, nobody in his lab worked on the same stuff, and none of his researcher friends could help.

      “I was so frustrated,” Madisch said. “I said there has to be something online where I go, where people can present themselves as a scientist, and where they put their information about their research and their publications and you can search for it.”

      That’s when Madisch got the idea for a scientist network: ResearchGate — a sort of Facebook for scientists. Instead of sharing favorite photos and videos, researchers could use the Web platform to connect with each other and share information that doesn’t get published. Madisch thinks ResearchGate will make scientists more productive.

      “My goal: to win the Nobel Prize,” Madisch said. “And I really believe in that. If we think that ResearchGate will accelerate research in all the different fields, it will change the speed of science significantly in the future. I definitely think that ResearchGate could win the Nobel Prize for that one day.”

      For the entire article and audio interview: http://www.npr.org/2011/04/18/135513803/like-share-learn-facebook-for-scientists

  3. Mystery melts as chocolate DNA decoded

    Scientists have identified 28,798 genes in the chocolate tree, a breakthrough that could help produce finer dark chocolate

    26 Dec 2010 Ian Sample Science correspondent -guardian.co.uk

    The chocolate tree and woodland strawberry have become the latest life forms to have their genetic make-up decoded by scientists.

    The work gives researchers an unprecedented view of the biological parts inside each crop and is expected to help produce hardier and more disease-resistant plants and lead to tastier treats.

    An international team of scientists led by the French organisation CIRAD selected a variety of the Theobroma cacao chocolate tree called Criollo, which was first domesticated by the Maya around 3,000 years ago. The tree is one of the oldest tree crops still grown and is used to produce some of the finest dark chocolate.

    Many cacao farmers grow trees that produce lower quality chocolate because they are more resilient to disease and so more likely to guarantee a good harvest.

    The researchers identified 28,798 genes in the chocolate tree, including two kinds that help defend against disease and a group of genes the plant uses to make cocoa butter, a prized substance in making chocolate, drugs and cosmetics.

    For the entire article: http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2010/dec/26/chocolate-dna-decoded

  4. Gates Reveals Budget Efficiencies, Reinvestment Possibilities

    Jan. 6, 2011 By Jim Garamone American Forces Press Service

    WASHINGTON – The Defense Department has found $154 billion in efficiencies over the next five years and will be able to invest $70 billion of that saved money in more deserving accounts, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said today.

    The secretary announced the savings and reinvesting of the efficiencies during a Pentagon news conference.

    Gates emphasized that the nation is at war and faces a range of future security threats. “It is important to not repeat the mistakes of the past by making drastic and ill-conceived cuts to the overall defense budget,” he said. “At the same time, it is imperative for this department to eliminate wasteful, excessive and unneeded spending.”

    Gates said he wants every dollar invested in defense spent in the smartest manner. The efficiencies continue a process to reshape and re-balance the defense budget that has already saved the nation $300 billion, he noted.

    The secretary announced efficiencies in modernization accounts. He said he agrees with the Navy and Marine Corps recommendation to cancel the expeditionary fighting vehicle program, which already has consumed $3 billion to develop and would require another $12 billion to build.

    Gates said he also will restructure the F-35 joint strike fighter program. The Air Force and Navy variants of the fighter are on schedule, but the short take-off and landing variant is experiencing significant testing problems.

    “As a result, I am placing the STOVL variant on the equivalent of a two-year probation,” Gates said. “If we cannot fix this variant during this time frame and get it back on track in terms of performance, cost and schedule, then I believe it should be cancelled.”

    For the entire article: http://www.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=62351


    News Release: http://bit.ly/eNmqwf
    Transcript: http://bit.ly/gw1QID
    Special Report: http://bit.ly/fdgnNE

    CSPAN Rebroadcast: http://www.cspan.org/Events/Defense-Department-Briefing-on-Budget-Efficiency/10737418737/

    • Pentagon Budget (short clip)
      From: DODvClips | January 07, 2011

      Defense Secretary Robert Gates has announced the latest steps to save the Pentagon billions of dollars over the next five years.

  5. Thompson Creek Windows Named 2010 “Replacement Contractor of the Year”

    Thompson Creek Windows
    awarded coveted title by Replacement Contractor magazine in recognition of their emphasis on customer service in the mid-Atlantic region

    Hyattsville, MD (Vocus) December 15, 2010

    Thompson Creek Window Company, one of the region’s largest remodeling companies, was recently awarded “Replacement Contractor of the Year” for 2010 by Replacement Contractor magazine.

    Replacement Contractor ultimately honored Thompson Creek as this year’s recipient because of their commitment to the customer. According to Jim Cory, editor of Replacement Contractor, “It’s a company that focused on customer service — systematized and measurable — before that became a priority to others.”

    The publication also cited Thompson Creek’s dedication to customer service as another important area that sets them apart in the industry. Thompson Creek uses a third-party survey company, Guild Quality, to contact customers, and the company has enjoyed response rates of nearly 80%, up from 30% prior to using Guild Quality. The driving force behind how every Thompson Creek employee performs their job is the goal of total customer satisfaction. Being able to measure that satisfaction through dedicated surveying of every contact – whether they ended up purchasing from Thompson Creek or not – gives them a very clear picture of where their strengths are and what areas they can target for improvement.

    For the entire article: http://www.prweb.com/releases/Thompson_Creek_Windows/Replacement_Windows_MD_VA/prweb4894234.htm

    • Thompson Creek Window Company offers the beauty, comfort and reliability that you want for all your home improvement needs in the Washington DC metro area including Maryland, and Northern Virginia.

      Over the past 30 years, Thompson Creek Window Company has become the mid-Atlantic’s premier home improvement replacement products company. Windows and doors, clog-free gutters, vinyl siding – custom-manufactured, installed and serviced from our family-owned and operated facilities in Landover, Maryland.

    • Thompson Creek Windows Hosts President Obama As He Announces Economic News

      Jan 07, 2011 Thompson Creek

      ocal Manufacturer/Installer Experiences Impressive Growth in a Challenging Economy

      Thompson Creek Window Company hosted a visit from President Obama this morning at its manufacturing facility in Landover, Maryland, which was the site of the President’s remarks to the media about the economy, comment on the monthly employment report and make economic personnel announcements.

      Thompson Creek President Rick Wuest said, “It was definitely an honor and a change of pace for us to host the President and the White House Press Corps. Being selected by the White House as the location for announcements on the economy is exciting for all of our employees, and being showcased as a company that is able to thrive in these challenging conditions is validation of our hard work that has created a lot of jobs and kept us on a strong growth path.”

      The Company is a privately owned and family operated manufacturer and installer of energy efficient home improvement replacement products. Founded in 1980, it has evolved into one of the leading home improvement contracting companies in the nation and now includes Thompson Creek Window Company, Closet America, LLC, and St. Claire Window & Door Corp. Products include replacement windows and doors, vinyl siding and a clog-free gutter system. Thompson Creek employs a staff of 289 people at two locations: the manufacturing plant and distribution center in Landover, Maryland, and corporate headquarters and administrative offices in Lanham, Maryland. The Company’s market territory includes Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

      For the entire article: http://www.thompsoncreek.com/index.php/288-thompson-creek-windows-hosts-president-obama-as-he-announces-economic-news


    1/7/10 POLITICO

    President Obama is making four changes to his economic team, leading with the announcement that former Clinton adviser Gene Sperling will be his new director of the National Economic Council. In addition, Obama will make Jason Furman the principal deputy director of the NEC, a White House official said in an e-mail to reporters on the condition of anonymity.

    Obama also plans to nominate Katharine G. Abraham to the Council of Economic Advisers and Heather Higginbottom as the deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget, the official said. The announcements will be made at a manufacturer of energy-efficient home products in Landover, Md., where Obama will speak about the monthly unemployment report due out in the morning.

  7. December jobs report seen showing greater hiring


    WASHINGTON – The government is expected to report Friday that businesses stepped up hiring in December, a trend likely to gain momentum in 2011.

    Economists are predicting that employers added a net total of 145,000 jobs last month and that the unemployment rate dipped to 9.7 percent.

    Some are even more optimistic after a private payroll firm estimated this week that companies added nearly 300,000 jobs in December. Also encouraging was a report that fewer people applied for unemployment benefits over the past month than in any four-week period in more than two years.

    A decline in layoffs has consumers feeling better about the economy and spending more freely. This past holiday shopping season was the best in four years.

    And a payroll tax cut that goes into effect this month will give Americans even more money in the new year. Economists expect that will boost economic growth and give businesses more confidence to hire.

    “Consumers are no longer as concerned about their job security, and that’s giving them a little more confidence to go out and spend,” said Ryan Sweet, an economist at Moody’s Analytics.

    For the entire article: http://yhoo.it/eTffCW

  8. House plans test vote Friday on health care repeal

    1/7/10 AP

    WASHINGTON – The House opens a largely symbolic debate Friday on whether to repeal President Barack Obama’s landmark health care overhaul, the culmination of the first week with Republicans back in charge.

    A procedural vote around midday will set the rules for formal debate and final action next Wednesday.

    House Republicans want to repeal Obama’s plan to expand coverage to more than 30 million uninsured and start over again with a more modest, less costly approach. But Democratic leaders in the Senate say they’ll block repeal.

    Both sides are preparing for a standoff. They’ll probably take the big issues in the health care debate back to the voters in 2012, when Obama is expected to run for re-election and the House and Senate are up for grabs again.

    • Reid on health care repeal effort: Republicans need to ‘get a new lease on life’

      1/7/10 Chris Moody – The Daily Caller

      Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made clear Thursday that as long as he’s in charge, no effort to repeal the health care law will see the light of day beyond the House, but Senate Democrats said they are open to changing parts of the law over the next year.

      “The Republicans have to understand that the health care bill is not going to be repealed,” Reid said. “Are we saying the health care bill is perfect? Of course not. We’re willing to work in any way that’s constructive in nature to improve the health care delivery system in our country, but repealing health care, they should get a new lease on life and talk about something else.”

      For the entire article: http://yhoo.it/eFrrht

    • These republicans start off their majority season by wasting the taxpayers’ money repealing hcr & reading the constitution. How sad; useless twits.

    • Repealing the Affordable Care Act will Hurt the Economy

      Posted by Stephanie Cutter on January 07, 2011

      The House Republican Health Care Plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act and take away all the new freedom and control it gives the American people over their health care and give it back to insurance companies will not only raise costs for individuals and businesses, but it will hurt our economy.

      Since the President signed the Affordable Care Act into law last March, the economy has created over 1 million private sector jobs, including the 113,000 private sector jobs created in December announced today. So, at a time when our economy is getting stronger, repealing the law would hamper that important economic progress by increasing costs on individuals and businesses, weakening the benefits and protections that Americans with private insurance are already enjoying, and adding more than a trillion dollars to our deficits.

      Opponents’ claim that the law is “job-killing” is in direct contradiction to what has actually been happening in the economy since enactment. In fact, repealing the law would likely slow down the growth of our economy. Here are the facts:

      * Since the Affordable Care Act was signed into law, the economy has created over 1 million private sector jobs. The unemployment rate is 9.4%, lower than it was in March 2010—9.7%.
      * In the period during and right after the enactment of the law, the economy grew by 2.7%.
      * Consumer confidence in a range of areas have improved, including retail and food sales by 4%, and auto sales by 7% since the enactment of the law.
      * Slowing the growth of health care costs—as the Affordable Care Act does—will have the likely impact of creating more jobs since businesses will have to spend less on health care for their employees. This reduction could create more than 300,000 additional jobs.
      * The law widely expands coverage to Americans, thereby reducing the hidden tax of about $1,000 that families with insurance pay each year in additional premium costs to cover the uncompensated costs of the uninsured.
      * The law reduces small businesses’ health care expenses by giving them $40 billion worth of tax credits, and through the creation of new, competitive state-based insurance Exchanges. Exchanges will enable individuals and small businesses to pool together and use their market strength to buy coverage at a lower cost, the same way large employers do today, giving them the freedom to launch their own companies without worrying whether health care will be available when they need it.
      * The law will lower the deficit by over $100 billion this decade and by over $1 trillion in the following decade.

      For the entire article: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2011/01/07/repealing-affordable-care-act-will-hurt-economy

    • Rachel Maddow- GOP blunder gives Dems second chance with health reform

      From: StartLoving4 | January 07, 2011

  9. Optimism over government’s job report grows

    Jan. 6, 2011 By Greg Robb, MarketWatch

    WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — Expectations are mounting that the December job report will be strong given a flurry of positive signals this week, economists said on the eve of the report.

    “We’re optimistic we could see a decent number on Friday,” said Chris Low, chief economist at FTN Financial in New York.

  10. The United States economy ended the year by adding 103,000 jobs in December, the Labor Department said Friday, a number that missed expectations.

    In addition, the unemployment rate fell to 9.4 percent last month from 9.8 percent, its lowest rate since July 2009, in part because many American gave up looking for work.

    The agency also revised estimates from the two earlier months, now saying that 210,000 jobs were created in October instead of 172,000, and 71,000 in November, instead of 39,000.

  11. The Employment Situation in December

    Posted by Austan Goolsbee on January 07, 2011

    Today’s employment report shows that private sector payrolls increased by 113,000 in December, capping 12 consecutive months of growth that added 1.3 million private sector jobs to the economy during 2010, the strongest private sector job growth since 2006. The unemployment rate fell 0.4 percentage point to 9.4 percent last month.

    The overall trend of economic data over the past several months has been encouraging, due in large part to the initiatives passed by this Administration, but we still have a ways to go. The measures we worked with Congress to pass last month that continue tax cuts for the middle class and extensions to unemployment insurance are vital to sustaining the recovery. The Administration will also continue to focus on actions that the President has recommended to increase growth and job creation, such as providing incentives to encourage businesses to invest and hire here at home, investing in education and infrastructure, and promoting exports abroad.

    In addition to the increases last month, the estimates of private sector job growth for October (now 193,000) and November (now 79,000) were revised up. Including today’s revisions, private sector employers have added an average of 128,000 jobs per month in the 4th quarter, the highest quarterly average in almost four years.

    For the entire article: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2011/01/07/employment-situation-december

    private sector emplymnt 2010

    • January 07, 2011

      Remarks by the President on the December Jobs Report and Economic Personnel Announcements
      Thompson Creek Manufacturing, Landover, Maryland

      11:40 A.M. EST

      THE PRESIDENT: Please, everybody have a seat. It is wonderful to be with all of you today. I want to make just a couple of quick acknowledgments. First of all, we have one of the fine senators from the great state of Maryland, Ben Cardin, in the house. Where’s Ben? There he is right here. (Applause.) Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker is here. (Applause.)

      I want to thank Rick Wuest, the CEO and owner of Thompson Creek Manufacturing, and all the employees here at Thompson. Thank you so much for your hospitality and the great work that you’re doing. (Applause.) And I want to acknowledge the family and guests of those who are standing behind me today.

      It is wonderful to be here at Thompson Creek, and I want to thank Rick for showing me how you manufacture more efficient windows at this factory. This is, as he explained to me, a family business. Rick was just 13 when his father Fred opened the company. And back then, his family lived above the store, and Rick started out sweeping the floors. Three decades later, Thompson Creek has expanded. It’s already outgrown this new 80,000 square-foot facility that it moved into just three years ago. And I’ll bet sometimes Rick still feels like he’s living at the plant. (Laughter.) That’s what happens when you’re in charge.

      But building this business has been an extraordinary accomplishment for the Wuest family. And it speaks not only to him — it also speaks to all the employees here today, the hardworking men and women who make this company work. And it speaks to the promise of America. It’s the idea that if you’ve got a dream and you’re willing to work hard, then you can succeed.

      That promise is at the heart of who we are as a people, and it’s at the heart of our economic might. It’s what helps give an entrepreneur the courage to start a business, or a company the confidence to expand. It’s what leads to new products and new ideas, and technologies that have not only made us the world’s largest economy, but also the most innovative economy in the world. Making it possible for businesses to succeed is how we ensure that our economy succeeds and all our people succeed. It’s how we create jobs.

      For the entire transcript: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/01/07/remarks-president-december-jobs-report-and-economic-personnel-announceme

  12. Bernanke more hopeful recovery is sustainable

    1/7/10 By Pedro Nicolaci da Costa – Reuters

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. economy may be finally hitting its stride, even if growth remains too weak to put a real dent in the nation’s jobless rate, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said on Friday.

    Offering no real clues on the future direction of monetary policy, Bernanke sounded cautiously more upbeat than he had in his most recent public remarks, citing improvements in consumer spending and a drop in claims for jobless benefits as hopeful signs that a languid recovery was perking up.

    “We have seen increased evidence that a self-sustaining recovery in consumer and business spending may be taking hold,” the central bank chief said in his first testimony to Congress since the Fed launched a controversial plan to buy an additional $600 billion in government bonds.

    His remarks were made public just an hour after the Labor Department reported the economy generated a disappointing 103,000 jobs in December.

    For the entire article: http://yhoo.it/dKlgA0

  13. Union targets US plants run by Asian, German carmakers

    1/7/10 Joseph Szczesny -AFP

    DETROIT, Michigan (AFP) – After seeing its membership rolls decimated by plant closures at the Detroit Three, the United Auto Workers is launching a major campaign to unionize the US plants of foreign “transplants.”

    And it is counting on help from European and Asian trade unions to bolster its campaign at plants run by Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Hyundai, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen, a senior UAW official told AFP.

    The first battle is to get the automakers to agree to suspend the use of explicit anti-union tactics such as mandatory anti-union meeting or firing union supporters.

    “Just as the UAW has embraced fundamental change, we call upon the business community to also change,” UAW president Bob King said in statement this week.

    For the entire article: http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20110107/ts_alt_afp/usautolaborunion

  14. West Wing Week: 1/07/11 or “Resolutions”
    From: whitehouse | January 06, 2011

    Welcome to the West Wing Week, your guide to everything that’s happening at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. This week, the first family returns to Washington, the President signs over 30 bills into law, and West Wing staff share their New Year’s resolutions.

  15. SenateDemocrats | January 06, 2011

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid today emphasized the stark contrast between Democrats and Republicans’ legislative approaches to the 112th Congress. “I do get concerned when I hear my Republican colleagues say they want to focus on running about the deficit while taking things away from the middle class,” said Reid. “Were focused, as Democrats, in creating jobs by investing in education so our kids can compete in this new international economy we have. And we want to move off oil which is approaching $100 a barrel.”

  16. Reid Statement On Drop In Unemployment
    Now is not the time to take tax cuts away from small business

    January 7, 2011 democrats.senate.gov

    Washington, D.C.—Nevada Senator Harry Reid released the following statement on today’s national unemployment numbers:

    “Today’s jobs numbers are proof that our work to bring the economy back from the brink is beginning to pay off. The unemployment rate fell by nearly half a percent, more than 100,000 people have gone back to work and we added double the number of manufacturing jobs expected. But we know more work remains to be done. We know many families in Nevada and across America are still hurting. That’s why it’s more important than ever that we keep putting Americans back to work, protecting our middle class and helping small businesses grow and expand.

    “With Americans still struggling, the Republicans’ plan to take tax cuts away from small businesses couldn’t come at a worse time. We need to give small businesses help, not take it away. But rather than provide small businesses with incentives to grow and hire new workers, Republicans want to raise their taxes and give power back to the insurance companies. We cannot afford that at a time when our economy continues to recover.”


    “Today’s jobs numbers are proof that our work to bring the economy back from the brink is beginning to pay off. The unemployment rate fell by nearly half a percent, more than 100,000 people have gone back to work and we added double the number of manufacturing jobs expected. But we know more work remains to be done. We know many families in Nevada and across America are still hurting. That’s why it’s more important than ever that we keep putting Americans back to work, protecting our middle class and helping small businesses grow and expand.

    “With Americans still struggling, the Republicans’ plan to take tax cuts away from small businesses couldn’t come at a worse time. We need to give small businesses help, not take it away. But rather than provide small businesses with incentives to grow and hire new workers, Republicans want to raise their taxes and give power back to the insurance companies. We cannot afford that at a time when our economy continues to recover.”

  17. Pelosi Statement on December Jobs Report

    January 07, 2011 democraticleader.gov

    Washington, D.C. – Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today after the Department of Labor released its jobs report for December 2010, showing that the economy added 103,000 jobs, the private sector grew for the 12th straight month, and the unemployment rate dropped to 9.4 percent – the lowest level in 19 months:

    “Today’s jobs report provides evidence that the policies of the Democratic-led Congress are helping to create jobs and revitalize our economy – adding more jobs in 2010 than President Bush did over eight years. With so many Americans still looking for work, now is not the time to reverse course.

    “Republicans must join Democrats in focusing on putting people to work, instead of making their top priority repealing critical patient protections, putting insurance companies back in charge of the health of the American people and blowing a $230 billion hole in the deficit.‬

    ‪“Building on the progress of the December jobs numbers – marking the last full month of Democratic leadership of the House – we will continue to measure every proposal by whether it creates jobs, strengthens our middle class, and reduces the deficit.”‬

  18. Pelosi Statement on Beginning of GOP Repeal of Patients’ Rights Debate

    January 07, 2011 democraticleader.gov

    Washington, D.C. – House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today after the Republicans on the Rules Committee voted to consider legislation repealing patients’ rights legislation on the House floor:

    “Republicans are rushing a bill to the floor that would repeal the rights of patients, including children with pre-existing conditions, pregnant women, young people on their parents’ insurance and seniors. Doing so would put insurance companies back in charge of the health of the American people and, according to the nonpartisan CBO, add $230 billion to the deficit.

    “Democrats will judge what comes before Congress by whether it creates jobs, strengthens our middle class, and reduces the deficit. On all three of these tests, the repeal of patients’ rights fails.”

  19. Speak up if you support health care reform

    San Josde Mercury News Editorial

    Posted: 01/07/2011

    House Republicans’ vote to repeal health care reform next week will be symbolic. With a Democratic majority in the Senate and a president with a veto at the ready, wholesale repeal will not happen. It’s what follows the symbolic vote that could cause harm: gradual attempts to chip away at reform by, for example, refusing to fund provisions.

    So if you support President Barack Obama’s reforms as a starting point for reshaping the American health care system, this is the time to speak up.

    Maybe you’re relieved that, thanks to reform, you can provide coverage to your kids younger than 26 who can’t yet find a job with benefits. Or to know that the cancer you overcame last year won’t make you uninsurable in the future. Maybe you just believe that leaving 50 million Americans — 16.7 percent of the population — uninsured was, for a major industrialized nation, an inefficient way to deliver health care and simply wrong.

    Or perhaps you’re more serious about reducing debt than the GOP leadership. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says repealing reform would add some $230 billion to the federal deficit in the next 10 years.

    The voices of opponents of health care reform — and of anything else that might be a feather in Obama’s cap — are loud. We suspect there are more supporters, but that won’t matter if they remain silent.


    Write Letters to Congress:


  20. House GOP tries to fix mess started by lawmakers who voted without being sworn in

    1/7/10 By Holly Bailey – news.yahoo.com

    House GOP leaders are scrambling to remedy the rocky start to the opening of the 112th Congress by approving a measure Friday to invalidate votes taken by two Republican lawmakers who weren’t properly sworn in.

    As The Ticket reported Thursday, the leaders were stunned discover that two representatives — veteran Texas Rep. Pete Sessions and freshman Pennsylvania Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick — weren’t on the House floor Wednesday during the official swearing-in. Instead, they were in the Capitol Visitors Center at a party marking Fitzpatrick’s first day in Congress. At one point, the lawmakers looked up and noticed on TV that the oath was being administered to their colleagues.

    As the Morning Call’s Colby Itkowitz reported, the two raised their hands and joined along with their comrades. But under House rules, a TV-mediated swearing-in doesn’t count. Sessions and Fitzpatrick continued to vote on the floor, even though they weren’t properly sworn in — which has effectively invalidated every vote the House has taken since Wednesday, including the vote to elect John Boehner as speaker.

    For the entire article: http://yhoo.it/eH2q8A

    • Rachel Maddow- Delinquent congressmen_ boob tube rubes
      From: StartLoving4 | January 07, 2011

    • Watchdogs want ‘oathgate’ probe

      01/07/11 By Russell Berman – TheHill.com

      Two government watchdogs are calling for an ethics investigation into the reception a House Republican held in the Capitol while the 112th Congress was being sworn in on Wednesday.

      The Campaign Legal Center and the Sunlight Foundation said Friday that the Office of Congressional Ethics should look into whether Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.) violated House rules by soliciting campaign contributions for his swearing-in ceremony.

      Fitzpatrick and Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Tex.), the House GOP’s campaign chief, missed the official swearing-in on the House floor to attend Fitzpatrick’s event in the Capitol Visitor Center. Lawmakers are barred from using the Capitol for political or fundraising activities. Members are allowed to hold swearing-in ceremonies that are paid for with campaign funds, but an invitation for Fitzpatrick’s reception listed a cost of $30 per person and included a standard form for making campaign contributions.

      For the entire article: http://thehill.com/homenews/house/136693-watchdogs-want-oathgate-investigation-of-gop-lawmaker-who-missed-swearing-in

  21. Making Technology Neutral IT Procurement Decisions

    Posted by Victoria Espinel on January 07, 2011

    Each year, the U.S. Government spends almost $80 billion dollars buying information technology (IT); the software, computer equipment and network devices that help the Government run efficiently. It is important that those purchases be fair, neutral and based on an objective assessment of relevant criteria. To ensure that the agencies and the public are aware of our policy, today U.S. Chief Information Officer Vivek Kundra, Administrator for Federal Procurement Policy Dan Gordon and I issued a statement to Senior Procurement Executives and Chief Information Officers reminding them to select IT based on appropriate criteriawhile analyzing available alternatives including proprietary, open source and mixed source technologies.

    * Read our full statement: “Technology Neutrality.” (pdf)

  22. Good afternoon CR and friends. Thanks for the good articles posted today. I think I am seeing a new pattern of rapid response from Nancy, Harry and the Dems, highlighting the accomplishments of the Dems and the effect it is having on the economy. They are showing that the policies put into place by the Dems are beginning to pay off. I am loving this. In the meantime, the repugs are running around wasting time reading the constitution and breaking promises left and right. What a bunch of clowns.

  23. Rights groups seeks to block more of Arizona immigration law

    1/7/10 Tim Gaynor and David Schwartz – Reuters

    PHOENIX (Reuters) – A coalition of rights groups asked a federal judge on Friday to block parts of an Arizona state law cracking down on illegal immigrants, which they say infringe day laborers’ free speech rights.

    Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signed a tough state law last April that required police to determine the immigration status of anyone they suspected was in the country illegally.

    Key components of the state law were put on hold by U.S. District Court judge Susan Bolton before it came into effect in July, ruling that immigration matters are the federal government’s responsibility.

    But several other measures in the law including provisions banning drivers from hiring day laborers off the street, went into effect.

    The American Civil Liberties Union and a coalition of six civil and Hispanic rights’ groups seek a preliminary injunction to block two sections of the law targeting day laborers and those that hire them, pending a final ruling on their constitutionality.

    For the entire article: http://yhoo.it/iiWjDS

  24. Pelosi: Dems intend to win back the House

    By Michael O’Brien – 01/07/11 07:40 AM ET

    House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is signaling she doesn’t plan to stay in that diminished job very long.

    “We are in a little bit of a sparse mode right now. I didn’t realize we would be,” Pelosi told CNN’s John King, who noted her “sparsely decorated” new office. “I’ve had other work to do than to [laughter] … because I don’t plan to stay here that long.”

    Pelosi moved out of the Speaker’s office and into minority leader headquarters after Republican John Boehner (Ohio) was sworn in earlier this week as Speaker.

    Democrats need to win 25 seats to take back the House in 2012, and senior members of the party have emphasized this week that their goal is nothing less than that.

    The top House Democrat and 70-year-old former Speaker suggested Thursday night she has no goal short of winning the chamber back for her party.

    For the entire article: http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/136553-pelosi-no-intention-short-of-winning-back-the-house

  25. A National Program Office for Enhancing Online Trust and Privacy

    Posted by Howard A. Schmidt on January 07, 2011

    Today, at Stanford University, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and I were pleased to announce that the Commerce Department will host a National Program Office (NPO) in support of the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC). As I’ve written previously, the NSTIC fulfills one of the action items in the Cyberspace Policy Review (pdf) and is a key building block in our efforts to secure cyberspace.

    This holiday season, consumers spent a record $30.81 billion in online retail spending, an increase of 13 percent over the same period the previous year. This striking growth outshines even the notable 3.3-5.5 percent overall increase in holiday spending this past year. While clearly a positive sign for our economy, losses from online fraud and identity theft eat away at these gains, not to mention the harm that identity crime causes directly to millions of victims. We have a major problem in cyberspace, because when we are online we do not really know if people, businesses, and organizations are who they say they are. Moreover, we now have to remember dozens of user names and passwords. This multiplicity is so inconvenient that most people re-use their passwords for different accounts, which gives the criminal who compromises their password the “keys to the kingdom.”

    For the entire article: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2011/01/07/national-program-office-enhancing-online-trust-and-privacy

  26. Working Together to Protect the Everglades

    Posted by Secretary Ken Salazar on January 07, 2011

    I am in Florida today to announce an exciting initiative to conserve working lands and wildlife habitat in the Everglades headwaters.

    The Everglades rural working ranch landscapes are an important piece of our nation’s history and economy, and this initiative would work to ensure that they remain vital for our future.

    The partnerships being formed would protect and improve water quality north of Lake Okeechobee and restore wetlands which are so vital to the entire Florida economy. The proposed conservation area and refuge would also protect important habitat for 88 federal and state listed species, including the Florida panther, Florida black bear, whooping crane, and Everglade snail kite.

    For the entire article: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2011/01/07/working-together-protect-everglades

    • ARRA Funds Help Save Everglades Habitat
      From: USInterior | January 05, 2011

      The National Park Service has been awarded $7 million dollars of American Reinvestment and Recovery Act funds for the Cape Sable Dam Project, replacing dams on man-made canals in the southern portion of the park adjacent to Florida bay. This will keep saltwater out and preserve habitats and the species that depend on them.

  27. January 07, 2011

    Statement by the President on H.R. 6523

    Today I have signed into law H.R. 6523, the “Ike Skelton National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011.” The Act authorizes funding for the defense of the United States and its interests abroad, for military construction, and for national security-related energy programs.

    Section 1032 bars the use of funds authorized to be appropriated by this Act for fiscal year 2011 to transfer Guantanamo detainees into the United States, and section 1033 bars the use of certain funds to transfer detainees to the custody or effective control of foreign countries unless specified conditions are met. Section 1032 represents a dangerous and unprecedented challenge to critical executive branch authority to determine when and where to prosecute Guantanamo detainees, based on the facts and the circumstances of each case and our national security interests. The prosecution of terrorists in Federal court is a powerful tool in our efforts to protect the Nation and must be among the options available to us. Any attempt to deprive the executive branch of that tool undermines our Nation’s counterterrorism efforts and has the potential to harm our national security.

    With respect to section 1033, the restrictions on the transfer of detainees to the custody or effective control of foreign countries interfere with the authority of the executive branch to make important and consequential foreign policy and national security determinations regarding whether and under what circumstances such transfers should occur in the context of an ongoing armed conflict. We must have the ability to act swiftly and to have broad flexibility in conducting our negotiations with foreign countries. The executive branch has sought and obtained from countries that are prospective recipients of Guantanamo detainees assurances that they will take or have taken measures reasonably designed to be effective in preventing, or ensuring against, returned detainees taking action to threaten the United States or engage in terrorist activities. Consistent with existing statutes, the executive branch has kept the Congress informed about these assurances and notified the Congress prior to transfers. Requiring the executive branch to certify to additional conditions would hinder the conduct of delicate negotiations with foreign countries and therefore the effort to conclude detainee transfers in accord with our national security.

    Despite my strong objection to these provisions, which my Administration has consistently opposed, I have signed this Act because of the importance of authorizing appropriations for, among other things, our military activities in 2011.

    Nevertheless, my Administration will work with the Congress to seek repeal of these restrictions, will seek to mitigate their effects, and will oppose any attempt to extend or expand them in the future.


  28. January 07, 2011

    Readout of the meeting of the National Security Advisor with Japanese Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara

    National Security Advisor Tom Donilon met today with Japanese Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara in the White House. They held an in-depth discussion of regional and bilateral issues. Mr. Donilon and Foreign Minister Maehara discussed the goals for Prime Minister Naoto Kan’s planned visit to the United States in first half of 2011. Mr. Donilon expressed appreciation for Japan’s efforts in strengthening the U.S.-Japan alliance and for Japan’s contributions to numerous global issues. They agreed that the United States and Japan will continue close consultation and cooperation on North Korea and other areas of mutual concern.

  29. At least 1 envelope ignites in DC postal facility

    January 7, 2011 By the CNN Wire Staff

    Washington (CNN) — An envelope that ignited Friday at a Washington postal sorting facility was addressed to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, a department official confirmed.

    Metropolitan Police Chief Cathy Lanier would not comment on markings on the package, or if it contained a note, but she said it was “similar in nature” to devices that ignited Thursday in two Maryland state offices.

    Those devices carried messages apparently decrying road signs that ask motorists to report suspicious activity, a government official said.

    At least one device was found, police said.

    U.S. Postal Inspector Pete Rendina said inspectors were screening mail at facilities in the Washington metro area.

    Napolitano, who was in Washington Friday, returned Thursday from a weeklong trip to Europe and the Middle East.

    The building at 3300 V Street NE was evacuated, police spokeswoman Tisha Gant said. Law enforcement officers cleared the scene Friday evening without finding more devices.

    The envelope that ignited was not opened and did not go off in an employee’s hands, a law enforcement source said. The person tossed it into a sorting bin and then smelled smoke. A source on the scene said that all the employees had been accounted for.

    For the entire article: http://www.cnn.com/2011/CRIME/01/07/district.of.columbia.mail.ignited/index.html?hpt=T1&iref=BN1

  30. DHS Announces Partnership with WCO to Strengthen the Security and Resiliency of the Global Supply Chain

    January 6, 2011 dhs.gov

    BRUSSELS—Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano today announced a new partnership with the World Customs Organization (WCO) to enlist other nations, international bodies and the private sector in increasing the security of the global supply chain—outlining a series of new initiatives to make the system stronger, smarter and more resilient.

    “Securing the global supply chain is part and parcel of securing both the lives of people around the world, and the stability of the global economy,” said Secretary Napolitano. “The United States is committed to working with our international partners and the private sector to keep this powerful engine of commerce, jobs, and prosperity from being attacked or disrupted.”

    During remarks today to shipping and cargo stakeholders, security experts and government officials at the European Policy Centre, Secretary Napolitano discussed the three main elements of this international effort to strengthen the security of the global supply chain:

    * Preventing terrorists from exploiting the global supply chain to plan and execute attacks;
    * Protecting the most critical elements of the supply chain system, such as transportation hubs and related critical infrastructure, from attacks and disruptions; and
    * Building the resilience of the global supply chain to ensure that if something does happen, the supply chain can recover quickly.”

    For the entire article: http://www.dhs.gov/ynews/releases/pr_1294331815795.shtm

  31. My list:

    1. Hi, everybody!
    2. I love President Obama.
    3. If I were in the same room with President Obama, I’d faint dead away right on the floor and make a total fool of myself in front of the others.
    4. Hope you all have a great Friday evening!

  32. WH

    Saturday Jan. 8, 2011

    All Times Eastern

    Pres Obama receives the presidential daily briefing

    8:00 AM
    9:00 AM
    10:00 AM
    11:00 AM
    12:00 PM
    1:00 PM
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    3:00 PM
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    6:00 PM

  33. Remarks of President Barack Obama
    As Prepared for Delivery
    The White House
    January 08, 2011

    Last month, our economy added more than 100,000 private sector jobs and the unemployment rate fell sharply. This follows encouraging economic news from increased auto sales to continued expansion of our manufacturing sector.

    Now, we know that these numbers can bounce around from month to month. But the trend is clear. We saw 12 straight months of private sector job growth – the first time that’s been true since 2006. The economy added 1.3 million jobs last year. And each quarter was stronger than the last, which means the pace of hiring is picking up.

    Now we’re seeing more optimistic economic forecasts for the year ahead, in part due to the package of tax cuts I signed last month. I fought for that package because, while we are recovering, we plainly still have a lot of work to do. The recession rocked the foundations of our economy, and left a lot of destruction and doubt in its wake.

    So, our fundamental mission must be to accelerate hiring and growth, while we do the things we know are necessary to insure America’s leadership in an increasingly competitive world and build an economy that will provide opportunity to any American willing to work for it.

    I’m absolutely confident we will get there. I am confident, first and foremost, because of you; because of the ingenuity of our entrepreneurs and business owners; the tenacity of our workers; and the determination of the American people. This is what has made our economy the envy of the world. But we have to do everything we can to help our businesses and workers win in this new economy.

    Yesterday, I visited the Thompson Creek Window Company, a small business in Maryland. Over the past year, sales there have grown by 55% thanks, in part, to an energy tax credit we created. And this year, they’re also planning to take advantage of a new tax incentive for businesses. For one year, any business, large or small, can write off the full cost of most of their capital investments. This will make it more affordable for businesses like Thompson Creek to expand and hire.

    For the entire transcript: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/01/08/weekly-address-president-obama-touts-benefits-tax-cut-package-take-place

    • 1/8/10 Email from David Axelrod:

      Good afternoon,

      Yesterday, we got some good news about the American economy.

      113,000 new private sector jobs were created by America’s businesses in December, the twelfth consecutive month of positive job growth in this country. In 2010, 1.3 million private sector jobs were added, the strongest job growth since 2006. And thanks to strong jobs numbers during the fourth quarter of 2010, our unemployment rate has dropped .4 percentage points to 9.4%.

      These numbers are encouraging, but the fact remains there are still too many Americans who are out of work and too many families who are struggling to get by in these tough times.

      In his weekly address, President Obama discusses the jobs numbers and the importance of working together to grow our economy.

      Growing our economy and creating jobs is President Obama’s number one priority.

      That’s why the President worked so hard to extend tax cuts for the middle class and unemployment insurance for folks who are looking for work. These measures will help provide a vital boost to help spur stronger economic growth and job creation by America’s businesses in 2011 and provide some relief for families who are still struggling.

      Now to the bad news. The new Congress seems more interested in re-hashing the political battles of the past two years than in moving our economy forward.

      This week, the new Congress has, as its first act, announced their plans to attempt to repeal the law. While this move isn’t surprising, it is disappointing, particularly since repealing the health care law would increase costs for families and businesses, hand control back to insurance companies to deny, drop or limit your coverage, and reduce job growth.

      In addition, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office found that repealing the law would add more than a trillion dollars to the deficit over two decades.

      Our focus in the coming months must be on creating jobs and growing the economy. We simply can’t afford the symbolic battles and politics as usual in Washington.


      David Axelrod
      Senior Advisor to the President

      P.S. Yesterday President Obama discussed this important news and announced new members of his economic team. You can watch a video of his remarks and learn more about them here:


  34. January 07, 2011

    Reid: Tea party’s days are numbered

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid believes the tea party’s days are numbered.

    “The tea party will disappear as soon as the economy gets better. And the economy’s getting better all the time,” Reid said in a pre-recorded interview with NBC’s “Meet the Press,” scheduled to air Sunday.

    Reid argued that the tea party “was born” because the economy “is probably the worst it’s ever been except for maybe the Great Depression.”

    Reid survived a difficult reelection contest last year against a candidate with strong tea party ties, Republican Sharron Angle. Now back at his perch as the Senate’s leader, the Nevada Democrat came out swinging in his first television interview of the new Congress, according to excerpts provided by NBC.

    In an interview with host David Gregory from his Senate office, Reid went on to call Republican efforts to repeal the health care law passed last year “a gesture in futility.”

    “Even the reporters, people who read the news, report the news, not the pundits, not the editorial writers, even the people who report the news recognize that this is just a gesture in futility. Was the bill that we passed perfect? Of course not,” he said.

    The new Republican majority in the House voted overwhelmingly Friday to schedule debate next week on a repeal of the health care legislation passed last year. Reid has not committed to bringing the repeal legislation to a vote in the Senate, where it is almost certain to fail, but he has not shied away from criticizing Republicans for their efforts – particularly any costs incurred by it.

    For the entire article: http://www.politico.com/blogs/glennthrush/

    • The Fighter: An Up Close Look at Harry Reid

      Saturday, January 08, 2011 Posted by Christopher Hass – democrats.org

      Esquire magazine has an in-depth profile of Senator Majority Leader Harry Reid, as well as a look inside the last 72 hours of his successful campaign against Tea Party favorite Sharron Angle.

      The article recounts how Reid spent the final night before Election Day calling every single field organizer who had helped his campaign pull off a come from behind victory:

      Reid has decided to spend the last evening of his last campaign thanking the people who have canceled a year of their lives for him, in what out in the world [looked] to be a doomed effort. Fifty-three field organizers scattered all over Nevada. Fifty-three calls to make. It is one thing to acquit yourself well when things are good, and quite another when you face humiliating defeat. That the most powerful man in the United States Senate has chosen to spend the waning hours this way is not lost on the few people who are with him in the room.

      For the entire article: http://www.democrats.org/news/blog/1355

  35. Think Progress: Harvard Economist Estimates Health Repeal Would Destroy Up To 400,000 Jobs Per Year

    January 07, 2011 Josh Cohen – Democrats.org

    As House Republicans move forward with a bill to repeal the “job killing” Affordable Care Act, they ignore the fact that the economy added 113,000 jobs during December 2010, topping 12 consecutive months of economic growth. Additionally, a Harvard economist released a report today demonstrating that repealing health care would have a hugely-negative economic outcome on job growth.

    Harvard economist David Cutler argues in new paper released this morning that repealing the health law would reverse these gains and could destroy 250,000 to 400,000 jobs annually over the next decade. Eliminating the law would increase health care costs and cause employers to reduce wages and cut jobs for those employees who already receive minimum wage or are in fixed contracts.

    The chart below shows the “net impact of repealing health reform on total employment.”

    hcr repeal destroys jobs

    In fact, David Cutler proves that employers are already benefiting from the Affordable Care Act.

    A growing number of employers are taking advantage of the tax credit that allows businesses with fewer than 25 workers and average wages under $50,000 to deduct up to 35% of the cost of the premiums they provide for their employees and many are receiving money from the law’s reinsurance program, which assists employers with retiree health costs. In 2014, small businesses will be able to use the new health insurance exchanges to pool resources and lower costs by covering their workers through a larger risk pool. All this would free up dollars that could then be used for job creation.

  36. Rachel Maddow- America not getting better at being smarter
    From: StartLoving4 | January 06, 2011

  37. Horrifying news coming out of Arizona. My prayers are with Congresswoman Gifford and her family. A 9yr old girl died in this tragedy. Sad very sad.

    • Sandy – I’m so sorry to hear this – just catching up with the news. Found a reference to a statement from President Obama on the tragedy. Very sad.

      • Hi CR….I just wanted to share this..

        I think Sen. Robert F. Kennedy said it best in his speech after Dr.King was murdered.

        Mindless Menace Of Violence Speech:

        • Mindless Menace of Violence (excerpt)

          City Club of Cleveland, Cleveland, Ohio
          April 5, 1968

          …..Whenever any American’s life is taken by another American unnecessarily – whether it is done in the name of the law or in the defiance of the law, by one man or a gang, in cold blood or in passion, in an attack of violence or in response to violence – whenever we tear at the fabric of the life which another man has painfully and clumsily woven for himself and his children, the whole nation is degraded.

          “Among free men,” said Abraham Lincoln, “there can be no successful appeal from the ballot to the bullet; and those who take such appeal are sure to lose their cause and pay the costs.”

          Yet we seemingly tolerate a rising level of violence that ignores our common humanity and our claims to civilization alike. We calmly accept newspaper reports of civilian slaughter in far-off lands. We glorify killing on movie and television screens and call it entertainment. We make it easy for men of all shades of sanity to acquire whatever weapons and ammunition they desire.

          Too often we honor swagger and bluster and wielders of force; too often we excuse those who are willing to build their own lives on the shattered dreams of others. Some Americans who preach non-violence abroad fail to practice it here at home. Some who accuse others of inciting riots have by their own conduct invited them.

          Some look for scapegoats, others look for conspiracies, but this much is clear: violence breeds violence, repression brings retaliation, and only a cleansing of our whole society can remove this sickness from our soul.

          For there is another kind of violence, slower but just as deadly destructive as the shot or the bomb in the night. This is the violence of institutions; indifference and inaction and slow decay. This is the violence that afflicts the poor, that poisons relations between men because their skin has different colors. This is the slow destruction of a child by hunger, and schools without books and homes without heat in the winter.

          This is the breaking of a man’s spirit by denying him the chance to stand as a father and as a man among other men. And this too afflicts us all.

          I have not come here to propose a set of specific remedies nor is there a single set. For a broad and adequate outline we know what must be done. When you teach a man to hate and fear his brother, when you teach that he is a lesser man because of his color or his beliefs or the policies he pursues, when you teach that those who differ from you threaten your freedom or your job or your family, then you also learn to confront others not as fellow citizens but as enemies, to be met not with cooperation but with conquest; to be subjugated and mastered.

          We learn, at the last, to look at our brothers as aliens, men with whom we share a city, but not a community; men bound to us in common dwelling, but not in common effort. We learn to share only a common fear, only a common desire to retreat from each other, only a common impulse to meet disagreement with force. For all this, there are no final answers.

          Yet we know what we must do. It is to achieve true justice among our fellow citizens. The question is not what programs we should seek to enact. The question is whether we can find in our own midst and in our own hearts that leadership of humane purpose that will recognize the terrible truths of our existence.

          We must admit the vanity of our false distinctions among men and learn to find our own advancement in the search for the advancement of others. We must admit in ourselves that our own children’s future cannot be built on the misfortunes of others. We must recognize that this short life can neither be ennobled or enriched by hatred or revenge.

          Our lives on this planet are too short and the work to be done too great to let this spirit flourish any longer in our land. Of course we cannot vanquish it with a program, nor with a resolution.

          But we can perhaps remember, if only for a time, that those who live with us are our brothers, that they share with us the same short moment of life; that they seek, as do we, nothing but the chance to live out their lives in purpose and in happiness, winning what satisfaction and fulfillment they can.

          Surely, this bond of common faith, this bond of common goal, can begin to teach us something. Surely, we can learn, at least, to look at those around us as fellow men, and surely we can begin to work a little harder to bind up the wounds among us and to become in our own hearts brothers and countrymen once again.

          4/5/1968 Robert F Kennedy spoke on the death of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

  38. January 08, 2011

    Remarks by the President on the Shootings in Tucson, Arizona
    State Dining Room

    4:46 P.M. EST

    THE PRESIDENT: As many of you are aware, earlier today a number of people were shot in Tucson, Arizona, including several who were meeting at a supermarket with their congresswoman, Gabrielle Giffords. We are still assembling all the facts, but we know that Representative Giffords was one of the victims. She is currently at a hospital in the area, and she is battling for her life.

    We also know that at least five people lost their lives in this tragedy. Among them were a federal judge, John Roll, who has served America’s legal system for almost 40 years; and a young girl who was barely nine years old.

    I’ve spoken to Arizona governor Jan Brewer and offered the full resources of the federal government. A suspect is currently in custody, but we don’t yet know what provoked this unspeakable act. A comprehensive investigation is currently underway, and at my direction, Director Bob Mueller is en route to Arizona to help coordinate these efforts. I’ve also spoken to the Democratic and Republican leaders in the House.

    Gabby Giffords was a friend of mine. She is not only an extraordinary public servant, but she is also somebody who is warm and caring. She is well liked by her colleagues and well liked by her constituents. Her husband, Mark Kelly, is a Navy captain and one of America’s valiant astronauts.

    For the entire transcript: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/01/08/remarks-president-shootings-tucson-arizona

    • January 08, 2011

      Statement by the Vice President

      The horrific attack in Tucson, Arizona, this morning has taken the lives of at least five people, including a federal judge and a young girl, and left many others wounded, among them a dear friend, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.

      Gabby is one of the finest members of Congress I know. She is a principled leader and a consensus-builder. She has spent her time in office working her heart out to improve the lives of the people she represents. And she loves her husband and family above all else. On this tragic day, Jill and I are praying for Gabby’s recovery, and we hold her family in our hearts.

      Chief Judge John Roll was a dedicated jurist whose death is a terrible loss to Arizona and to the country.

      We do not yet know the motivation behind these shootings. But what we do know is that there is simply no justification, no rationale for such senseless and appalling violence in our society.

      Please join Jill and me in praying for each of today’s victims and for their families and loved ones.

    • January 08, 2011 defense.gov

      Statement by Secretary of Defense Gates on Tucson Shooting

      “I am saddened to hear of the attack on Congresswoman Giffords and members of her staff earlier today in Tucson, Arizona. I have had an opportunity to interact with Congresswoman Giffords in her capacity as a member of the House Armed Services Committee, where she served on the Readiness and Air and Land Forces subcommittees. She is a strong supporter of America’s national defense, cares deeply about our men and women in uniform, and has pursued her oversight responsibilities with dedication. Our thoughts are also with her husband, Navy Captain Mark Kelly, an aviator and astronaut of great distinction, as well as the families of the other victims of this attack. Ms. Giffords represents a new generation of principled and thoughtful political leaders that have come to Washington in recent years. We will miss her strong character and good judgment in the Congress during these important days ahead, and we are praying for her full recovery.”

    • Statement by Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano

      January 8, 2011 – dhs.gov

      “I am deeply saddened by reports that Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, Chief Judge John Roll and others were attacked today in Tucson, Arizona. There is no place in our society or discourse for such senseless and unconscionable acts of violence. Gabby is a steadfast representative for southern Arizona and both she and John are dedicated public servants.

      “The Department of Homeland Security has offered all possible assistance to the FBI and the Pima County Sheriff’s Office, who are leading the investigation. My thoughts and prayers are with Congresswoman Giffords, her family and staff, and all those who were injured in this difficult time.”

    • Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik spoke to reporters in a press conference

      Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik said Giffords was the target of a gunman whom he described as mentally unstable and possibly acting along with an accomplice. He said Giffords was among 13 people wounded in the melee that killed six people, including Arizona’s chief federal judge, a 9-year-old girl and an aide for the Democratic lawmaker. He said the rampage ended only after two people tackled the gunman.

      The sheriff pointed to the vitriolic political rhetoric that has consumed the country as he denounced the shooting that claimed several of his friends as victims, including U.S. District Judge John Roll. The judge celebrated Mass on Saturday morning like he does every day before stopping by to say hello to his good friend Giffords.

      “When you look at unbalanced people, how they respond to the vitriol that comes out of certain mouths about tearing down the government. The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous,” the sheriff said. “And unfortunately, Arizona I think has become the capital. We have become the mecca for prejudice and bigotry.”

      For the entire article: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/us_congresswoman_shot

    • Sheriff: Suspicious package at Giffords HQ

      1/8/10 By AMANDA LEE MYERS, AP

      TUCSON, Ariz. – A loud noise rattled more than 100 people attending a candle light vigil on Saturday near the headquarters of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, where authorities were investigating a suspicious package hours after she was wounded in a shooting rampage in Tucson.

      Police department spokesman Lt. Fabian Pacheco said an officer checking Giffords’ office had found “a real strange” device that he said resembled a coffee can and had writing on it. Pacheco would not disclose what the writing said. A bomb squad had been working to render the device safe before the loud noise was heard.

      Authorities did not immediately say whether the noise was caused by contents within the package or from authorities’ efforts to destroy the device and render it safe.

      “It’s been a horrible and tragic day,” he said. “The prudent thing for us is to take everything seriously.”

      For the entire article: http://yhoo.it/eiBRSK

  39. *********************

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    titled: “Mindless Menace Of Violence In America”

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