Archives for FUBAR

CPAC red-faced over Paul’s straw poll win

The wheels came off the smooth-running Conservative Political Action Conference right-wing love machine this weekend when libertarian political gadfly Ron Paul won the 2010 straw poll and sent boos through the meeting ballroom. Paul garnered 31 percent of the vote, topping perennial winner and favorite Mitt Romney by nine points. Everyone else, including GOP sex symbol Sarah Palin, who bagged the conference, finished in single digits. Politico reports that “CPA organizers were plainly embarassed by the results, which could reduce the perceived impact of a contest that was once thought to offer a window into which White House hopefuls were
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Grudge leads to plane crashing into building

A software engineer with an apparent grudge against the government crashed his small plane into an office building with nearly 200 Internal Revenue Service employees inside, killing himself and at least one worker. Before flying his single engine Piper PA-28 into the hulking black-glass office building Thursday morning, A. Joseph Stack III apparently posted a rambling screed on a Web site in which he railed against “big brother,” the Catholic Church, the “unthinkable atrocities” committed by big business and the governments bailouts that followed. In the note, signed “Joe Stack (1956-2010)” and dated Thursday, he said he slowly came to
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Job losses, skepticism offset stimulus gains, claims

The jobless got a hand. Taxpayers got tax breaks. And a sinking economy stabilized. But the public’s response to President Barack Obama‘s recession-fighting policies has been increasingly dreary. And the reason is simple: six months of unemployment above 9.6 percent. “It doesn’t yet feel like much of a recovery,” Obama had to concede Wednesday, even as he sought to promote his year-old massive economic stimulus bill. Unemployment trumps all else. It provides a lens through which the public reads an economic narrative of bank bailouts, executive bonuses, expensive health care remedies and exploding debt. In that environment, gross domestic product
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Corolla probe: Another blow to Toyota’s credibility

Toyota faces a new US probe into complaints of steering problems with the Corolla, the world’s best-selling car, in a fresh setback to the crisis-hit auto giant’s efforts to restore trust in its brand. The Japanese maker, already pulling more than eight million cars worldwide over defects linked to more than 30 deaths, said Wednesday it was looking into the issue and would recall the Corolla if it found a dangerous flaw. Another recall would deal a heavy blow to efforts by the world’s biggest automaker to bounce back from a string of safety issues and criticism that it was
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Anderson Cooper sued over fall in new home

An interior designer  is suing CNN anchor Anderson Cooper after she took an unusual fall at an old New York City firehouse that he is converting into a new home.

Killian O'Brien, of Brooklyn, says in her suit that she plunged 17 feet through the hole that once held the station's fire pole. The pole had been removed, but the hole was uncovered.

The accident happened in September. Her lawyer, Neil Greenberg, says she is lucky to be alive.

Cooper's spokesman declined to comment.

The Manhattan firehouse was built in 1906. It was the former home of a unit of the Fire Patrol, a private firefighting organization backed by the insurance industry.

O'Brien is also suing the developer of the building.
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Recalls challenge the ‘Toyota Way’

Assembly lines that run like clockwork. Supplies that arrive just in time. Dedicated workers trained to spot defects, churning out quality cars in the millions. Such are the trademarks of "Toyota Way" manufacturing.

That's why the automaker's recent bungling over a spate of global recalls appears so out of character.
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U.S. debt continues to rise dangerously

It's bad enough that Greece's debt problems have rattled global financial markets. In the world's largest economic and military power, there's a far more serious debt dilemma.

For the U.S., the crushing weight of its debt threatens to overwhelm everything the federal government does, even in the short-term, best-case financial scenario — a full recovery and a return to prerecession employment levels.

The government already has made so many promises to so many expanding "mandatory" programs. Just keeping these commitments, without major changes in taxing and spending, will lead to deficits that cannot be sustained.
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GOP sends mixed signals on health summit

Congressional Republicans sent mixed signals after President Barack Obama challenged them to participate in a one-of-a-kind televised summit with Democrats to come up with legislation on overhauling the nation's health care.

House Republicans derided the Feb. 25 event, casting doubt on whether it would yield any bipartisan agreement to extend coverage to millions of Americans and rein in medical costs. "Are they willing to start over with a blank sheet of paper?" said Kevin Smith, a spokesman for GOP leader John Boehner of Ohio. "We need answers before we know if the White House is more interested in partisan theater than in facilitating a productive dialogue about solutions."
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911 terror trials: Uncertainty, controversy

The Obama administration appears increasingly unsure what to do with professed Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed after officials indicated they are reconsidering not just where he should go on trial, but whether he should face civilian or military justice.

Both Attorney General Eric Holder and White House spokesman Robert Gibbs did not rule out a military trial when asked Friday about the Obama administration's options.
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