Quite a Set Up

From Huffington Post:

Shirley Sherrod Resigns From USDA Post After Racism Controversy Get Politics Alerts

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is standing by its quick decision to oust a black Agriculture Department employee over racially tinged remarks at an NAACP banquet in Georgia, despite evidence that her remarks were misconstrued and growing calls for USDA to reconsider.

Shirley Sherrod, who until Tuesday was the Agriculture Department’s director of rural development in Georgia, says the administration caved to political pressure by pushing her to resign for saying that she didn’t give a white farmer as much help as she could have 24 years ago when she worked for a nonprofit group.

Sherrod says her remarks, delivered in March at a local NAACP banquet in Georgia, were part of a story about racial reconciliation, not racism. The white farming family that was the subject of the story stood by Sherrod and said she should keep her job.

“We probably wouldn’t have (our farm) today if it hadn’t been for her leading us in the right direction,” said Eloise Spooner, the wife of farmer Roger Spooner of Iron City, Ga. “I wish she could get her job back because she was good to us, I tell you.”

The NAACP, which initially condemned Sherrod’s remarks and supported Sherrod’s ouster, joined the calls for her to keep her job. The civil rights group said it and millions of others were duped by the conservative website that posted partial video of her speech on Monday.

“We have come to the conclusion we were snookered … into believing she had harmed white farmers because of racial bias,” said the statement from NAACP President Benjamin Todd Jealous.

A White House official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said President Barack Obama was briefed on the matter after Sherrod’s resignation and stands by the Agriculture Department’s handling of it.

The website, biggovernment.com, gained fame last year after airing video of workers at the community group ACORN counseling actors posing as a prostitute and her boyfriend. It posted the Sherrod video as evidence that the NAACP, which recently passed a resolution condemning what it calls racist elements of the Tea Party, condones racism of its own.

Sherrod said she was on the road Monday when USDA deputy undersecretary Cheryl Cook called her and told her the White House wanted her to resign because her comments were generating a cable news controversy.

This episode to destroy the Obama presidency shows me that there are people out there who will say or do anything to accomplish their goals. After the conservative stations spend the day yesterday beating the war drums over Ms. Sherrod, today she becomes the victim because she was fired. I am totally disgusted.

It is all very transparent. Where was the hue and cry yesterday when Ms. Sherrod was Satan Incarnate? How many lives is Andrew Breitbart going to affect? Does he just pinpoint minorities? I hope Sherrod sues his pants off.

Virginia Budget Faux Surplus

From The Washington Examiner  7/19/10:


Virginia’s government is in surplus, and the McDonnell administration couldn’t be happier. So, too, are state workers, who were promised a three percent bonus if the state finished its fiscal year in the black.

But is Virginia’s surplus really all it’s cracked up to be? Republican Delegate Bob Marshall put it this way:

To say Virginia ended the fiscal year with a surplus when we decided not to pay all the bills i.e. VRS (I did not vote for the final version of the budget because taxes and fees were added which did not pass both chambers or which were rejected), is to be caught speeding with literary license.

Needless to say, Marshall’s pith doesn’t fit the narrative being peddled by McDonnell and others, who very much want the world (and credulous talk show hosts) to believe the books were balanced and a surplus generated without gimmicks or tax hikes.

Here’s McDonnell pitching his story to Sean Hannity. No taxes raised? A model for Washington politicians to follow? Sorry, Sean. They already do.

Marshall’s point about the VRS – Virginia’s state employee retirement system – is an important one. To help make the budget numbers work, the General Assembly declined to make a $620 million payment into the VRS. They say they will, at some future date, and with interest. But that’s playing with fire.  A review of state pension plans from the American Enterprise Institute put Virginia’s unfunded liabilities at nearly $53 billion – 17 percent of state GDP.

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Bachmann Gets House Approval for Tea Party Caucus

According to Huffington Post:

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) said on Monday that her proposal to create a Tea Party caucus in the United States House of Representatives has been officially approved.

Bachmann announced that she had filed paperwork to establish the House group last week. The mission of the coalition she said at the time would be to promote “fiscal responsibility, adherence to the Constitution, and limited government.”

And now, it seems that Bachmann’s Tea Party caucus dream has become a reality. “Just got word that the Committee on House Administration officially approved the House Tea Party Caucus,” said the conservative congresswoman in a tweet on Monday afternoon.

Republican Conference Chairman Mike Pence became the first House member to signal his intention to join Bachmann’s newly-created caucus. Talking Points Memo reports:

At a press availability this afternoon, Pence was enthusiastic. “You betcha,” Pence said when asked if he’d join

Does this mean that there will be real Tea Party leaders? This is beginning to sound fairly formal rather than loose-knit, grass roots organizing.

How many various caucuses are there in the House? This seems like a good time to take a wait and see approach. It will be interesting to see who joins and what all the common denominators are. Birds of a feather will flock together. It should be telling.

“Robin Hood” Drops the F Bomb on Fox News

The Las Vegas Robin Hood dropped the F Bomb on Fox News  yesterday.  Imagine Doocy’s surprise.

Everyone handled it well.  In this case, the family bread winner had some horrible form of cancer and couldn’t work and they had lost their home.  A self-professed Robin Hood uses his gambling winnings to make people’s lives better.  I guess he just got a little overly excited.

I was watching this segment and didn’t even pick up on it at the time. I guess I just have potty ears.