Friday, August 27, 2010

Trenton, NJ - Governor Fires Education Commissioner over Funding Mistake

Trenton, NJ - Gov. Chris Christie has fired state education commissioner Bret Schundler in the wake of the controversy over the state’s loss of up to $400 million in federal school funding, Eyewitness News has learned.

The Newark Star Ledger reports Schundler refused to resign after the state lost out on federal school funding blamed on a clerical error.

However, video surfaced that appeared to contradict Schundler’s account of what happened when the state delegation took part in the application process.

MLB Odds: Nationals Get Terrible News on Stephen Strasburg

     Stephen Strasburg could be out until 2012 now. (AP Images)  
Could the career of Washington Nationals rookie phenom pitcher Stephen Strasburg have already peaked after just 12 major-league starts? Let’s hope not, but now Strasburg faces a long road back as a second MRI on the pitcher’s right elbow revealed a significant tear in his ulnar collateral ligament and will likely require Tommy John surgery – that means he’s out anywhere from 12-18 months. So we may not even see him next year, and that’s a shame.

"It's a tough day for him and for all of us, for everyone who's a Nats fan," Team president Stan Kasten said in an understatement.

The good news is that Tommy John surgery now is fairly routine and most pitchers are able to come back 100 percent from it — the success rate for pitchers returning to full strength and capability is roughly 90 percent. The Washington Post had a great stat, listing nine pitchers who underwent the surgery in their career who were selected for the 2010 All-Star Game: Chris Carpenter, Tim Hudson, Josh Johnson, Arthur Rhodes, Brian Wilson, Joakim Soria, Hong-Chih Kuo, Rafael Soriano and Billy Wagner. And possible National League Rookie of the Year Jamie Garcia of the Cardinals also had the operation. The Nationals lost another top pitching prospect, Jordan Zimmermann, a year ago to Tommy John surgery. He made his big-league return Thursday and allowed five runs in four innings against St. Louis. It was slightly more than 12 months since Zimmerman’s surgery.

Strasburg, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2009 draft, is 5-3 with a 2.91 ERA and 92 strikeouts in just 68 innings pitched this year. He left his last start Aug. 21 against the Phillies after feeling a twinge in his pitching elbow. He landed on the DL for the second time this season; also going there in July when he felt tightness in his shoulder warming up. The Nats said for more than a few days they expected this recent injury to be minor before the second MRI showed the tear. Strasburg will get a second opinion before actually having the surgery but it’s mostly a formality.

by Allen James

Paul Krugman: This Is Not a Recovery

Why aren't monetary and fiscal policymakers doing more to boost the economy?:
This Is Not a Recovery, by Paul Krugman, Commentary, NY Times: What will Ben Bernanke, the Fed chairman, say in his big speech Friday in Jackson Hole, Wyo.? Will he hint at new steps to boost the economy? Stay tuned. ...
Unfortunately,... this isn’t a recovery, in any sense that matters. ... The important question is whether growth is fast enough to bring down sky-high unemployment. We need about 2.5 percent growth just to keep unemployment from rising... Yet growth is currently running somewhere between 1 and 2 percent, with a good chance that it will slow even further in the months ahead. Will the economy actually enter a double dip, with G.D.P. shrinking? Who cares? If unemployment rises for the rest of this year, which seems likely, it won’t matter whether the G.D.P. numbers are slightly positive or slightly negative.
All of this is obvious. Yet policy makers are in denial.
After its last monetary policy meeting, the Fed released a statement declaring that it “anticipates a gradual return to higher levels of resource utilization” — Fedspeak for falling unemployment. Nothing in the data supports that kind of optimism. Meanwhile, Tim Geithner, the Treasury secretary, says that “we’re on the road to recovery.” No, we aren’t.
Why are people who know better sugar-coating economic reality? The answer, I’m sorry to say, is that it’s all about evading responsibility.
In the case of the Fed, admitting that the economy isn’t recovering would put the institution under pressure to do more. And so far, at least, the Fed seems more afraid of the possible loss of face if it tries to help the economy and fails than it is of the costs to the American people if it does nothing, and settles for a recovery that isn’t.
In the case of the Obama administration, officials seem loath to admit that the original stimulus was too small. True, it was enough to limit the depth of the slump..., but it wasn’t big enough to bring unemployment down significantly.
Now,... officials could, with considerable justification, place the onus for the non-recovery on Republican obstructionism. But they’ve chosen, instead, to draw smiley faces on a grim picture, convincing nobody. And the likely result in November — big gains for the obstructionists — will paralyze policy for years to come.
So what should officials be doing, aside from telling the truth about the economy?
The Fed has a number of options. ... Nobody can be sure how well these measures would work, but it’s better to try something that might not work than to make excuses while workers suffer.
The administration has less freedom of action, since it can’t get legislation past the Republican blockade. But it still has options. It can revamp its deeply unsuccessful attempt to aid troubled homeowners. It can use Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac ... to engineer mortgage refinancing that puts money in the hands of American families — yes, Republicans will howl, but they’re doing that anyway. It can finally get serious about confronting China over its currency manipulation...
Which of these options should policy makers pursue? If I had my way, all of them.
I know what some players both at the Fed and in the administration will say: they’ll warn about the risks of doing anything unconventional. But we’ve already seen the consequences of playing it safe, and waiting for recovery to happen all by itself: it’s landed us in what looks increasingly like a permanent state of stagnation and high unemployment. It’s time to admit that what we have now isn’t a recovery, and do whatever we can to change that situation.

Posted by Mark Thoma

We’re Living in The Future: Scientists Create Dry Water

Scientists at the University of Liverpool report that they have created dry water. That is, a mostly normal drop of wet water is surrounded by a coating of sandy silica, creating, basically, powdered water. Don’t expect to be able to pour yourself a nice tall glass of dry water, though. The proposed uses for this new form of water mostly deal with absorbing greenhouse gases. The research shows that dry water is three times better at absorbing carbon dioxide than the normal wet water is.

Other potential uses include acting as a catalyst “to speed up reactions between hydrogen and maleic acid” to create succinic acid, a key component in making drugs, food ingredients, and consumer products. The possibility of “dry emulsions” to blend unblendable liquids is also a possibility.

by Scott Merrill

Stand By Your Man By Joe Siano

I suggest that you open this window and play this song while reading this blog.

I’ve long believed that all that you really need to know in life can be found in the lyrics of country songs.

Sadly for thousands of women, particularly African-American women, following Tammy’s advice to “stand by your man” can lead to hard time in the slammer. 
In her new book, Misguided Justice: The War on Drugs and the Incarceration of Black Women, Dr. Bush-Baskette examines the impact of the War on Drugs on Black women.  Although it’s not just a Black issue because I’ve seen it happen in my own family.

In war, we call the death, destruction and violence inflicted upon non-combatants collateral damage.  In the Drug War, collateral damage often falls upon the wives and girlfriends of the men who deal in the drug trade.

While our American system of jurisprudence will not compel a wife to testify against her husband, that same justice system will convict a women of being an accessory to drug trafficking for simply allowing to happen from her home or her car. 

Drug addiction and dependency is a modern tragedy   But the War on Drugs is failing.  It does little to keep drugs out the hands of eager buyers.  Nor does it effectively combat the quasi-national, paramilitary drug cartels.

America needs to take fresh look at its drug enforcement policies, to weigh their costs, benefits and repercussions.  When over half of the inmates in federal prisons are in for drug related offenses, yet a $40 billion-plus per year illegal drug industry flourishes, the conservative mind should recognize the free market and work and try to capitalize upon it for legal gain.  The liberal mind should see it as an opportunity to tax and regulate.  The combination of these approaches would serve us better than what we have now.

Incarcerating our young men and women is not the answer.  We cannot afford to maintain the prison population.  Nor can we afford the culture of dependency that we create when these people are released into a job market that regards them as “damaged goods”.

New York Governor David Paterson May Face Criminal Charges Over Yankees Tickets

Governor David Paterson could face criminal charges over some damn Yankee tickets:

NEW YORK (CBS 2) — A special investigator said Thursday Gov. David Paterson gave misleading testimony about getting free tickets to a Yankees World Series game last fall.

And he could face criminal charges, reports CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer.
Getting five free tickets to see the Bronx Bombers play in the World Series may prove to be a very costly mistake for the governor.

A special prosecutor working for Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said Paterson issued “inaccurate and misleading” testimony on whether he was going to pay for the tickets, which each cost $425. The report details how before Game 1, Paterson’s office sent a letter to the Yankees saying he was “attending on official business” and “tickets would not be paid for.”

And the case is now being referred to the Albany district attorney.

The Paterson camp released a statement on Thursday night which said: “The Governor did not lie when he testified about the Yankee tickets, and the report does not recommend the bringing of criminal charges or conclude that the governor intended to give false or misleading testimony.  We are therefore hopeful that D.A. Soares will ultimately conclude that no criminal charges are warranted.”

A state trooper singing the national anthem at the state fair in Syracuse on Thursday could have been a flashback for Gov. Paterson. It was sung at Game 1 at Yankee Stadium. But that memory could now turn into a nightmare for the governor because state law prohibits freebies.

In the stinging report, independent counsel Judith Kaye said: “Evidence indicates that his decision to pay for the tickets for his son and his son’s friend was made following a press inquiry the day after the game.”

Kaye added the governor also misled investigators about his claim that he brought a check to the game to pay for the tickets. CBS 2′s Sean Hennessey reports the investigation found “the check was not in Paterson’s handwriting” and had been backdated.

“It does look really bad and that’s where it does get Nixonian, where the cover-up feels much more significant than the crime, even though the crime is a clear violation,” said Susan Lerner, executive director of the watchdog group Common Cause New York.

Lerner said Paterson should have admitted he mistakenly violated the state’s public gift law, instead of “putting out various different stories? That’s where the problem comes from.”

For Paterson, the most damming finding was this: that “the evidence… warrants consideration of possible criminal charges by the district attorney.”

Ironically, Paterson contended he did nothing wrong.

“I feel that when the facts are displayed and the truth comes out I will be vindicated,” Paterson said earlier this year.

So now the governor has to sit on the edge of his seat waiting to see if the Albany DA brings criminal charges.
A spokesman for the DA said the case is under review.

A state ethics commission recommended last week that the governor be fined more than $90,000 in civil penalties.

Posted by Media Outrage

Government Drops Case Against Robert Blagojevich

Robert Blagojevich gets some welcome news: The Government is dropping its case against him and won't be refiling charges.
Assistant U.S. Atty. Reid Schar said the government was dropping two counts of extortion conspiracy and one count each of wire fraud and extortion because of "the disparity in the roles" of the two brothers and "in the interests of justice."
I'm glad the Government made the right call, see my post, Enough about Rod, Lets Talk About Robert.

L.A. Times: Blockbuster to file Chapter 11 next month

The Los Angeles Times is reporting that the once mighty Blockbuster will file for bankruptcy as early as next month. The Times quotes anonymous sources “familiar with the matter” in the report and explains that the filing could take five months and see 500 to 800 retail outlets closed. The company is seeking protection under Chapter 11 in order to restructure their current debt-load of roughly $1 billion (that’s billion with a “b”). The bankruptcy is being described as pre-planned, and most of Blockbuster’s creditors will have some sort of deal in place with the company when the filing is made official.


by Andrew Munchbach 

Katrina: The Long Aftermath

Posted by Hariman in catastrophe
Hurricane Katrina
In recognition of the 5th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina’s landfall on the Gulf Coast, Aric Mayer has put together a short film version of his paper “Aesthetics of Catastrophe” (Public Culture 20:2), in which he explores some of the problems and possibilities in covering the immediate aftermath of the storm.

The anniversary will be recognized by a number of other documentaries, but I doubt that serious reflection on Katrina could do better than to start with Aric’s visual essay.  And while it is true that substantial investments have been made in respect to civil engineering, I think it is safe to say that much remains to be learned: about what the disaster exposed in American society and government, about that society’s relationship to nature, and, perhaps most important, about the nature of catastrophe itself.   Catastrophe involves not only dramatic destruction but also long, slow processes of denial both before and after the event.  Hence the double tragedy when the aftermath is defined by the restoration of the same rather than genuine renewal.  Aric’s mediation on the first days of the aftermath of Katrina provides a remarkable demonstration of how a natural disaster challenges not only civil engineering but also the civic imagination.

Aric was the principal photographer working for the Wall Street Journal in New Orleans in the weeks after the storm.  His solo exhibition of the photographs, titled “Balance + Disorder: Hurricane Katrina and the   Photographic Landscape,” was held at Gallery Bienvenu in New Orleans.

You can see the film here, as one of the posts at Aric’s blog.

Photograph by Aric Mayer, Port Sulphur, LA (southern Plaquemines Parish).

Jimmy Carter Frees Black Teacher Aijalon Gomes From North Korea

A smile flickered across Aijalon Gomes’ face as he hugged former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and boarded a plane for Boston on Friday, seven months after his arrest in North Korea.

Carter flew to the North Korean capital, Pyongyang, this week on a private mission to secure a pardon for the 31-year-old American, who was detained in January after crossing into the country from China.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Il granted Carter’s request to “leniently forgive” Gomes, the official Korean Central News Agency reported, and Carter and Gomes were due back in Boston later Friday for a reunion with his mother, Carter’s spokeswoman Deanna Congileo said in Atlanta.

There was no indication that Kim – who was making a surprise trip to China this week – met with Carter as widely anticipated.

In Washington, the State Department welcomed the news of Gomes’ release. We “are relieved that he will soon be safely reunited with his family,” spokesman P.J. Crowley said.

Aijalon Gomes (pronounced EYE-jah-lahn GOHMS) was the fourth American in a year arrested for trespassing in North Korea, a communist nation that fought against the U.S. during the 1950-53 Korean War and does not have diplomatic relations with Washington.

Journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee were arrested last March and released only after former President Bill Clinton made a similar trip to Pyongyang to plead for their freedom.

It was unclear what prompted Gomes to enter the repressive nation. He may have been emulating fellow Christian Robert Park, who was detained after he crossed into North Korea in December to highlight its human rights record, said Jo Sung-rae, a South Korean human rights advocate who met with Gomes. Park was expelled some 40 days later after issuing an apology carried by North Korean state media.

Video: NJ didn’t fix grant error as governor says

HADDONFIELD, N.J. (AP) — A video released by the federal Department of Education shows that a piece of Gov. Chris Christie’s explanation about what went wrong when the state made a $400 million mistake on a grant application may also have been wrong.

It appears to be a relatively small mistake made in describing the costly error. But the expedited release of the video to prove it shows that the federal government is eager to counter stinging criticism from New Jersey’s outspoken Republican governor.

Oddly, the brouhaha has to do with one area of policy where Christie and President Barack Obama seem to agree: that the nation’s schools should be better measured and more open to competition.

On Tuesday, the federal Department of Education announced that nine states and the District of Columbia had won coveted Race to the Top grants aimed at sparking major educational overhauls. New Jersey was the top runner-up — but didn’t receive any money.

On Wednesday, Christie accepted responsibility for the error, but he also blasted the Obama administration for docking the state precious points in its evaluation for what he called a “clerical error” on an otherwise strong application.

The mistake was giving budget figures for the 2010 and 2011 fiscal years where the application called for data from 2008 and 2009.

Christie said state education Commissioner Bret Schundler tried to correct the error in an Aug. 11 presentation to a federal panel that was judging the application.

“During that interview this issue was raised and Commissioner Schundler gave them, in the interview, the numbers for ‘08-’09 because the mistake was raised,” he said. “But they still didn’t give us the credit for the points.”

If the points had not been docked, New Jersey’s application may have finished ahead of Ohio’s.
Thursday afternoon, the federal Department of Education released video of the presentation. Spokesman Justin Hamilton said it was being released ahead of schedule because of the interest in the saga, but he would not comment on it further.

The video seems to contradict Christie’s account of the data being provided on the spot.
In the video, a panelist points out the error and asks for the correct data. Some education officials seated with Schundler can be seen flipping through binders trying to find it.

A half-hour later, near the end of the questioning, a panelist unseen in the video again asks if the numbers had been located. The state officials say it hadn’t been.

During an appearance Thursday night on New Jersey 101.5, WKXW-FM, Christie said he had just heard about the video and had not seen it. He said he planned to review it later.

EXCLUSIVE: Paramount Picks 'Hurt Locker's Jeremy Renner To Co-Star With Tom Cruise In 'Mission: Impossible 4'

BREAKING: So Paramount Pictures won't be screen-testing any young actors to star opposite Tom Cruise after all. I've learned that the studio has just chosen Jeremy Renner to infuse new blood in its Mission: Impossible franchise. Renner is the Oscar-nominated star of The Hurt Locker and will star alongside Cruise in the fourth installment of the franchise that will begin production in the fall as a reboot. Brad Bird is directing and Cruise is producing with JJ Abrams.

Paramount has struggled to find the right co-star to play the operative opposite Cruise. One factor was  selecting an actor who could potentially carry the series on his own down the line, should Cruise's Ethan Hunt character not continue to be the emphasis. While Cruise is expected to return for a fifth installment, production chief Adam Goodman wanted a guy who could grow into a leading man in his own right. The studio boss was interested in actors like Tom Hardy and Chris Pine, but they were booked. So the studio planned to test a group of young actors later this week, and Deadline spent all Tuesday going back and forth with the studio over candidates Kevin Zegers, Christopher Egan and Anthony Mackie (the latter of whom starred with Renner in The Hurt Locker). But it was clear that Paramount wasn't sure what it was going to do. Those tests have been canceled now (Mackie, another seasoned actor poised for a breakout, ultimately pulled himself out of the running and didn't sign a test deal.) Goodman, sources said, felt Renner's "has a Daniel Craig quality" and the heft to carry the franchise. Interesting that, rather than trying to create a star by going with a young unknown, Paramount instead has placed its bet on a 39-year old actor who has been around for years.

This casting fills a big piece in the Mission: Impossible 4 puzzle, which has included coming to resolution on a budget. The script by Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec came in just as Cruise's Knight and Day opened to lackluster U.S. box office which caused Paramount to rethink M:I4 budget. Cruise's deal has now been completed, though his perks package is still being worked out. The film will shoot in the U.S., Vancouver, Prague and Dubai.

Renner only truly reached the A-list with The Hurt Locker even though his earlier work is memorable, but he has the grit, maturity, and chops to take this next big step. It is the second major role for Renner coming out of his  turn as the reckless explosives specialist. Renner also will star in Marvel Studios' The Avengers, playing the role of Hawkeye in that star-studded superhero ensemble that will be directed by Joss Whedon. Paramount is expected to release that film under its distribution deal with Marvel Studios, made before the company was acquired by Disney. Renner will next be seen in the Ben Affleck-directed The Town, the GK Films-produced drama that Warner Bros opens September 17.

Former President Carter Secures Release Of American Imprisoned In North Korea

From a Carter Center statement:

Former President Jimmy Carter announced that he is leaving Pyongyang, North Korea, this morning accompanied by Mr. Aijalon Mahli Gomes. Mr. Gomes was imprisoned in January of this year and later sentenced to eight years of hard labor with a fine of about $600,000 for the crime of illegal entry into North Korea. At the request of President Carter, and for humanitarian purposes, Mr. Gomes was granted amnesty by the Chairman of the National Defense Commission, Kim Jong-Il.

It is expected that Mr. Gomes will be returned to Boston, Mass., early Friday afternoon, to be reunited with his mother and other members of his family.

The North Korean government had claimed that Gomes had illegally entered the country.

North Korea agreed to release Aijalon Mahli Gomes if Carter were to come to bring him home, a senior U.S. official told The Associated Press… State Department officials secretly visited North Korea in early August in what turned out to be a failed attempt to gain Gomes’ release. U.S. officials have pressed for his freedom on humanitarian grounds, citing his health and reports that Gomes has attempted suicide while in custody.

Carmelo Anthony’s Agents Give Ultimatum to Denver Nuggets

Carmelo Anthony Nuggets Tired
August 27, 2010 – Dr. Browntorious
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports last night had an update on the Carmelo Anthony/Denver Nuggets contract extension talks that you will want to read. Apparently Anthony’s reps World Wide Wes and Leon Rose are trying to strong are the Nuggets into a sign and trade, and they have given demands on specific teams to try and work with. So much for professionalism and etiquette in contract negotiations…
Carmelo Anthony(notes) wants out of Denver, and Worldwide Wes delivered that message to the Nuggets with all the delicacy of a jackhammer at Sunday morning services. Do yourself a favor and trade him, the agent told the organization weeks ago.
Denver was furnished with a short list of teams and told to get to work. Yes, this is how William Wesley and Leon Rose of CAA work now, thick with threats and ultimatums and a swagger suggesting that the sport belongs to them. After Anthony told owner-in-waiting Josh Kroenke that he still wanted out of Denver during a Sunday meeting, the Nuggets appear done trying to sell their All-Star forward on a contract extension.
This wasn’t a productive, nor particularly pleasant, meeting and multiple sources said it could turn out to be the point of no return for Anthony and the organization. Sources insist it’s no longer a matter of if the Nuggets trade Anthony, but when, where and for whom he’s traded for.
So, if the Yahoo! sources are valid, then it is likely that Carmelo Anthony might get his wish to be traded before the season even begins. It is highly likely that given recent events with J.R. Smith and the rumors he will be moved that a package deal could be worked out. Another possibility is even two or three separate trades involving Anthony, Smith, and possibly Kenyon Martin to try and rebuild the Nuggets line-up virtually from scratch.

Economy Caught in a Web

By Bill Wilson
The U.S. economy is caught in a web — of artificially low interest rates, easy money, fiscal “stimulus”, and expansive government control over whole sectors of the economy. And government has no intention of changing course.

The ostensible purpose of turning the money spigot on at full force in 2008 was to create a soft landing for the economy. Particularly, policymakers appeared desperate to keep deflationary forces at bay in the housing market, and to prevent prices from crashing rapidly. At best, they claimed to be saving the nation from another depression.
Unfortunately, housing prices have declined anyway by about one-third from their 2006 peaks, resulting in some $800 billion of negative equity for homeowners. Making matters worse, they may fall another 20 percent should the economy remain weak.

The home price declines were as inevitable as the housing bubble was avoidable. As you will recall, loose underwriting standards, low down payments, and low interest rates — all induced by government policies — led to the bubble’s rise. When it popped, as all bubbles do, the only question posed in 2008 was how quickly prices should be allowed to fall.

Regrettably, all the easing, spending, bailouts, and government takeovers have done is to prevent the market from finding its natural bottom. The Federal Reserve has kept its benchmark interest rate at near-zero percent since December 2008. This has only prolonged the economic misery, as the path to the bottom has slowed, creating a deflationary trap. The bottom has still not been reached.
Get full story here.

School District Considers GPS Tracking of Students

By Rick Manning
It seems every day we read or hear about another invasion of our privacy that is being suggested or implemented under the guise of public safety or security.

Our cell phones have Global Positioning Satellite chips to allow the location of the phone to be tracked, and if you have OnStar, your car can be tracked. Our streets our covered in traffic cameras, ATM cameras and private security cameras which seemingly hang from every pole. Prying eyes can even look through our clothes as we attempt to board an airplane, all under the guise of security. The federal 9th Circuit Court of Appeals even recently ruled that the government can put a GPS device on our vehicles and track our every move.

In Great Britain, the incredibly clear images from one of those on the street “Big Brother” cameras has become an Internet sensation as tens of thousands of people worldwide have viewed the video of a woman approaching a cat, petting the cat, then picking the animal up and dropping it into a trash dumpster.

Here in the U.S., mobile vans are being equipped with full body scanning technology to be able to peer into trunks of vehicles without the 4th amendment search warrant inconvenience. The manufacturer claims that the vans are not being equipped with strong enough equipment to prowl our streets as mobile peeping toms. Of course, we were also assured that the airport equipment would not be saving the under clothing images of innocent travelers, only to learn that many of those images are in fact archived.
Get full story here.

Standing On Principle or Battling America's Will?

By David Bozeman

According to the latest Democrat propaganda points, President Barack Obama is not out of the mainstream, he is simply standing on principle. Well, we can't even give him that, at least not on the mosque controversy, as he now won't back up his earlier statements in support of its construction. But they're running with it, anyway.

When a conservative Republican takes an unpopular stand, he or she is just… unpopular. Democrats and the press loved quoting President George Bush's basement-level approval numbers and slamming his hard-headedness for staying the course in Iraq long after the American people had soured on our presence there. But did anyone ever praise him for standing on principle?

In Obama's defense, yes, presidents often do have to take unpopular stands. Acting in the best interests of America against the overwhelming tide of public opinion requires a strength of leadership not found in those who enter public life merely to be important people, as opposed to doing important things. Americans tend to understand this and other perils of the presidency.
Whether Obama is motivated by principle or narcissism matters little to the condition of this country (and he probably is motivated by some of both). But when a leader finds himself too frequently justifying his clashes with the majority of Americans, the question bears asking, whose side is he on?
Get full story here.