Day Two with internet access. But too tired to do much. Let's make it short and sweet, shall we?
Here's what Rep. Issa apparently thinks is a good argument against paid family leave:
Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), expressing her support for a bill that would grant four weeks of paid family leave for federal employees, recently made note of international standards on the issue. "163 countries have recognized the importance of providing paid leave to families," Maloney said. "163 countries cannot be wrong."
The point, of course, was to point out something of a global consensus on the issue. There are certain basic employee benefits that should be available, and as the argument goes, if 163 countries already offer paid family leave, maybe it's time for the United States to step up.
In response, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), easily one of Congress' most embarrassing members, produced a video attacking the proposal. Chris Harris notes one of the video's key arguments.
Immediately following Congresswoman Maloney's remarks, the video features text asking: "Could these guys be wrong on paid parental leave?" The video then features NORTH KOREA, IRAN, VENEZUELA, and CUBA, with each country's name accompanied by a photo of its respective dictator.
Is [Issa] serious? Is his best argument actually that four countries the U.S. doesn't like "recognize the importance" of newborn children having their parents at home to care for them? That we should refuse to help dedicated public servants because Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Hugo Chavez do the same?
Apparently, yes, that's Issa's argument.
Here we have two governors preferring home-grown ignorance to national standards:
Yesterday, Education Week reported that 46 states have agreed to join forces to create common academic standards in math and English language arts through an effort led by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers. A primary goal of the initiative is to “eliminate the patchwork of academic standards across the country that result in students in the same grades learning different things in different states.” In Mississippi, for instance, 90 percent of fourth-graders passed the state reading exam in 2007, according to U.S. Department of Education data. But only 51 percent had at least “basic” or “partial mastery” on the test known as the Nation’s Report Card.
Republican Governors Sarah Palin of Alaska and Mark Sanford of South Carolina - the same governors who postured to reject millions of education stimulus funds - are among the four governors refusing to join the initiative. In a press release Palin said:
Alaska’s decision not to participate until after we monitor this is based on our desire to spend our time and public resources to improve instruction in the classroom and to form productive relationships between schools and the communities they serve.
The Cons are more pathetic than the state of my body after three days on the road. For the record, that's some pretty serious pathetic.
There was another horrible shooting yesterday, this time in Arkansas. And this time, the motive appears to have been a hatred of the American military for the Muslims who have been killed in Iraq and Afghanistan:
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — A 23-year-old man upset about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan opened fire from his truck at two soldiers standing outside a military recruiting station here on Monday morning, killing one private and wounding another, the police said.
... In a lengthy interview with the police, Mr. Muhammad said he was angry about the killing of Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan, Chief Thomas said. Previously known as Carlos Bledsoe, Mr. Muhammad told investigators that he had converted to Islam as a teenager, Chief Thomas said.
Chief Thomas said investigators believe that Mr. Muhammad acted alone. He seemed to be familiar with the Army recruiting office because it was not far from his home, the chief said, but might have been on the prowl for anyone in uniform.
“I would say he was looking for any and all targets of opportunity that happened to be military,” the chief said in a telephone interview. “That may have well been the first place he found.”
This is, of course, a horrific case, and no one in their right minds would celebrate it.
Yet naturally, the right-wingers -- still feeling the sting from having been held culpable for their inspirational role in the assassination of Dr. George Tiller on Sunday -- have decided that this is all the fault of liberals. As usual, Michelle Malkin is leading that particular parade.
There's a significant difference, though, in this case and the Tiller murder: No one on the left is celebrating this or wishing that the recruiters had had a chance to make their peace with God before being shot. No one is trying to justify it by suggesting that the recruiters met a just fate.And most of all, while there are smatterings of fringe leftists who hate the military and regularly demonize military recruiters, they exist entirely on the margins.