Archives for FUBAR

Dr. Laura: ‘Sure wish I hadn’t said that’

Talk radio host Dr. Laura Schlessinger has issued an apology for saying the N-word several times in an on-air conversation with a caller that she said was “hypersensitive” to racism. Schlessinger said on her website Wednesday that she was wrong in using the word for what she called an attempt to make a philosophical point. “I articulated the N-word all the way out — more than one time,” Schlessinger said in comments from the opening of her radio show that she posted on her site. “And that was wrong. I’ll say it again — that was wrong.” She said she
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Gibbs don’t need no stinkin’ apology

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Wednesday he might have said things differently when he lashed out at liberals he called the “professional left” and suggested some of them should be drug tested. But he told his daily White house briefing that he’s certainly not leaving his job over the remark, as at least one Democratic congressman has suggested. And he stuck to his line that President Barack Obama has accomplished or made great strides on key goals and promises despite criticism from some liberals that he has not done enough. Gibbs found himself in hot water with some
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Foreclosures surge

The number of U.S. homes lost to foreclosure surged in July, another sign lenders are moving quicker to take back properties from homeowners behind in payments. Lenders repossessed 92,858 properties last month, up 9 percent from June and an increase of 6 percent from July 2009, foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc. said Thursday. Banks have stepped up repossessions this year to clear out the backlog of bad loans. July makes the eighth month in a row that the pace of homes lost to foreclosure has increased on an annual basis. Meanwhile, homeowners who are falling behind on their payments are
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Michele Obama’s lavish, jet-set lifestyle raises questions

First Lady Michele Obama’s jet-set travels leave critics shaking their heads and wondering why she is living large at taxpayer expense while her husband preaches financial restraint to the rest of America. Her apparent clueless habit of jetting off to exotic locales while America struggles fuels criticism that she and her husband are out of touch with working class Americans. At the very least, they aren’t thinking about the message that the First Lady’s lavish travels sends to Americans who struggle to make mortgage payments and put food on the table. Reports The Seattle Times: As the U.S. economy endures
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Tea party runs into money problems

Some leading tea party activists are concerned that their efforts to reshape American politics, starting with the 2010 elections, are being undermined by a shortage of cash that’s partly the result of a deep ambivalence within the movement’s grassroots  over the very idea of fundraising, and partly attributable to an inability to win over the wealthy donors who fund the conservative establishment. Many tea party organizations have shied away from the heavy-handed solicitations that flood the email boxes of political activists. And the handful of tea party groups that have raised substantial amounts, either by embracing aggressive fundraising or through
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Feds drop ball on Medicare fraud cases

They don’t seem that interested in hot pursuit. It took private sleuths hired by Medicare an average of six months last year to refer fraud cases to law enforcement. According to congressional investigators, the exact average was 178 days. By that time, many cases go cold, making it difficult to catch perpetrators, much less recover money for taxpayers. A recent inspector general report also raised questions about the contractors, who play an important role in Medicare’s overall effort to combat fraud. Out of $835 million in questionable Medicare payments identified by private contractors in 2007, the government was only able
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Feds fudged on mortgage bailout failure numbers

The Obama administration on Friday acknowledged it had underestimated the number of homeowners who fell seriously behind on their mortgage payments even after getting government help. Treasury officials blamed the error on mortgage finance giant Fannie Mae, which acts as the program administrator for President Barack Obama’s $50 billion Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP). The program had been criticized for its overly optimistic estimates of the number of struggling borrowers helped by its subsidies of new mortgage terms. The actual numbers of permanent modifications that have lasted at least nine months through the end of May is tiny: just 4,764
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Fired HP CEO walks away with $28 million

Lauded for making Hewlett-Packard Co. the world’s biggest technology company, CEO Mark Hurd was in negotiations for a new contract worth about $100 million, according to a person familiar with the negotiations. Instead, he’s getting about a third of that to just go away. In a stunning announcement Friday, HP said it ousted Hurd after an investigation of a sexual harassment complaint found that he had falsified expense reports and other documents to conceal a relationship with a contractor. Hurd also allegedly helped the woman get paid for work she didn’t do. In recent weeks, Hurd was in negotiations for
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Oil still contaminating Gulf coast

Much of the crude still in the Gulf and coastal areas more than three months after BP‘s blowout has permeated deep into marshes and wetlands, complicating cleanup. Crews are still finding plenty of crude in those interior areas, even as government officials say spotting oil from the air on the Gulf’s surface is taking longer on each trip. “The good news is people are seeing less oil, but the bad news is the oil trapped in the marshes is moving out with the tides and sticking on the marsh cane,” said Maura Wood, an oceanographer with the National Wildlife Foundation,
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CIA moved prisoners to circumvent court

Four of the nation’s most highly valued terrorist prisoners were secretly moved to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in 2003, years earlier than has been disclosed, then whisked back into overseas prisons before the Supreme Court could give them access to lawyers, The Associated Press has learned. The transfer allowed the U.S. to interrogate the detainees in CIA “black sites” for two more years without allowing them to speak with attorneys or human rights observers or challenge their detention in U.S. courts. Had they remained at the Guantanamo Bay prison for just three more months, they would have been afforded those rights.
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