S/SW blog philosophy -

I credit favorite writers and public opinion makers.

A lifelong Democrat, my comments on Congress, the judiciary and the presidency are regular features.

My observations and commentary are on people and events in politics that affect the USA or the rest of the world, and stand for the interests of peace, security and justice.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

On my way to Saturday, stopping off at Twitter --

Twitter is an increasingly popular phenomenon. And I have succumbed. Beginning my session with TweetDeck yielded a treasure trove of items I want to share.

Reading tweets sometimes breaks me up --
I am drawn to writers and reporters who have the capacity for humor. My favorite is pourmecoffee, who said this, "After a day's reflection, the bitterest pill to swallow: Chicago eliminated in earlier round than Tom DeLay." (10/2/09).
I just started following this well known pundit, who gave me a grin with this. Howard Kurtz says, "Just finished Letterman stories. Anything else going on in the world? How'd that Olympics thing turn out?"

It is a small world -- The Internet has shrunk the globe in profound ways. It allows us to "meet" people that we would never encounter otherwise. Professor Alex Goodall lives across the sea in the United Kingdom and knows how to make my mouth water this morning: "Weekend bliss = almond croissant (from local P√Ętisserie Pascal - 60 secs walk from my house) + freshly-brewed coffee. Mmmmm!!"
During our times nothing quite unites us like climate change, or my preferred term, global warming. "Walruses Suffer Substantial Losses as Sea Ice Erodes," is from the New York Times (10/3/09).
And over the years The Huffington Post has evolved from a single individual blogger to a powerhouse news source. One of the ways they are succeeding is by adding features that are found in traditional newspapers and capitalizing on celebrity news. This tweet melds celebrity and political activism. "Brad & Angelina In Syria," is from The Huffington Post (10/2/09).

These are good-hearted folks -- Each of these writers/journalists has what I would call emotional intelligence. None is afraid to show sentiment. Libby Spencer, a blog friend of many years, is a fine writer (even when given only 140 characters): "Full moon in my little window of sky is lighting up a line of passing clouds. They look like a herd of charging elephants." An earlier tweet: "OK, hair looks great tonight. Guess I'll drive out for Chinese for dinner so somebody besides me gets to see it."
Blogger emptywheel, who is a teriffic investigative journalist writing at Firedoglake, retweeted this great item:"RT @chrisgeidner Deep THought: The late-night comedian went to the prosecutor; the senator had his parents pay the money"
Mark Knoller, CBS Radio WH correspondent, sent a TwitPic "Hand in hand and disappointed, Obamas return to WH from Copenhagen." He also sent a fine WH pic explaining, "Obama confers aboard AF-1 today with Gen. Stanley McChrystal, top US commander in AFghanistan. . . The Obama/McChrystal photo a rare view of Pres office cabin aboard AF-1. He has a sleeping cabin w- 2 beds in the nose of the 747." Earlier Knoller mentioned helpfully,"Avoid CopenHAYgen or CopenHAHgen problem. Just call it the Danish capital."
John Dickerson says to his fellow journalist, "Congratulation Tapper and the whole family RT @jaketapper: say hello to Jack Raymond Tapper, 9 lbs 10 oz." Chuck Todd did a RT (retweet) saying, "Mazel Tov!"
Scanning the regular hard news is so much more fun if it is characterized by great writing -- Intellect, passion for the work and a commitment to quality are shared by these news sources. "As Senate panel winds up, historic health debate to start," is from McClatchy News (10/2/09). Also this good analytic piece on Iran, Afghanistan and Israel/Palestine: "Obama faces a world of troubles; none will yield easily" The Nation reported on "Obama's Deal with Iran"
Steve Clemons, (10/2/09) of The Washington Note and the New America Foundation is someone I have been reading and listening to since 2005. He posts that he, "Is trying to figure out what stash of funds Mitch McConnell dipped into to pay for a DoD plane for DeMint to go to Honduras over Kerry veto."
Chuck Todd at MSNBC tweeted this insightful item: "Something to ponder: Cong Dems tell me they are simply exhausted from health care debate. Bad sign for PubOption." He also posted this item which sounds just a bit cynical: "So the Cong. record is now officially printed on 100% recycled paper. Um, hello? What took so long? Feels so very '90s.". Chuck can also be a bit shallow at times, but is still a great political analyst. To quote: "More Obama (who didn't cinch his tie, btw): Proud to have made case in person; "always a worthwhile endeavor" to promote America."

Issues of particular interest to me are easy about which to stay informed by judiciously following others who keep up with the same subjects. A couple are currently in the news:
  1. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act/Patriot Act legislation -- From Get FISA Right: "Misleading on PATRIOT Reauthorization." From ACLU "Patriot Reauthorization Begins. Badly." (10/2/09). Importantly, Senator Chris Dodd tweeted that he has ". . . Introduced legislation to repeal retroactive immunity for warrantless wiretapping:"
  2. Augustine Committee on a plan for next steps at NASA -- From Florida Space Report: "New Augustine Panel mtg on Oct 8 is solely to "score" the 8 options already identified in Summary Report. And timed to allow budget action." From the Human Space Flight (Augustine ) Committee: Meeting details pdf. Regarding a public teleconference (300 call-in limit).

References of a more general nature conclude this post:
  1. "Side-by-Side Comparison of Major Health Care Reform Proposals," is from The Kaiser Family Foundation.
  2. "RT@HuffPostTech Most Twitter users Tweet only about themselves. But is anyone following?," is from The Huffington Post (9/30/09).

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