Barack Tackles Race Head On In A South Carolina Speech

This speech by Barack in Manning, SC, has got to be one of his best speeches this year. It is because he takes the race issue head on. That is the only way to do it. He exudes strength.

JFK, Obama Parallels: Catholic, Black

I have also been so impressed with the string of new proposals he has brought about. Like tackling credit card companies.

In The News

As Oil Nears $100, Look Out Below BusinessWeek Having jumped 40% since August ...... There are 595 hedge funds that engage in at least some energy trading now, more than triple the 180 funds involved just three years ago. ...... "The barrier was supposedly $70, $80, then $90, and we're past that. Why would $100 suddenly cause a reversal?" .... the serious threat of a recession could take 40% off oil prices. "It's a beautiful thing that people forget: The market moves more quickly on the downside than it does on the upside."
Next Target for Alibaba: Consumers

San Francisco mayor, a rising Democrat, reelected Reuters
Spitzer makes the case for licenses for illegal immigrants
San Francisco Chronicle During a presidential debate, candidate Clinton insisted that Spitzer was trying to fill the "vacuum" left by Washington's failure to pass comprehensive immigration reform. Then Clinton insisted she never said that she supported the Spitzer plan, only that she understood the reasons for it. Then, she defended the plan. Finally, Clinton accused debate moderator Tim Russert of NBC News of playing "gotcha" by posing such a tough question. ...... I was against the idea before I was for it. ...... Along comes Spitzer, with a commonsense solution and the courage to see it through despite a firestorm of vitriol, protest and - his words - "racist venom." ........ one that would be used by illegal immigrants for driving and identification purposes within New York state, but not valid as an ID for boarding airplanes or crossing international borders. ...... The Bush administration has signed off on the plan ...... As for Spitzer, he has made the correct choice - even if it isn't the popular one. He has decided that New York's interest in determining who is in the state, and for what purpose, is vital enough that it can't be held hostage by the federal impasse over immigration reform or the all-or-nothing politics that kills the appetite for compromise. He has angered the extremes on both the right and the left, those who think he went too far or didn't go far enough. And he has provided a sensible alternative to what his more-conservative opponents seem to believe - that if you ignore illegal immigrants, they'll go away. ...... Most refreshing of all, when Spitzer took heat for his position - whether it was from political opponents in Albany or petty demagogues on cable television - he stood his ground.
Hillary the Hedgehog Yahoo! News
Obama Plan Focuses on Credit, Colleges
FOX News "Americans don't expect government to solve all of our problems," said Obama. "But you're tired of a government that works for special interests and not for you." ...... a new focus on bankruptcy and college costs. ...... our tax code favors wealth over work. ...... recent changes in the nation's bankruptcy laws which he said favored credit card companies over consumers ..... "I don't accept an America where we let someone go over a cliff just because they get sick," Obama said. ........ Obama said his credit card bill of rights would ban unilateral changes to a credit card agreement, prohibit changes in interest rates in debt already incurred and ban interest on late fees. ...... a new and fully refundable tax credit worth $4,000 for tuition and fees every year, which will cover two-thirds of the cost of the tuition at the average public college or university ...... new pension programs that would force employers to enroll workers in a retirement account that puts a small percentage of each paycheck into a retirement account. ....... That "will dramatically increase the number of Americans who save for retirement and lift up the amount of savings in the country," Obama said. ...... He is stepping up his grass-roots effort in Iowa just eight weeks before the precinct caucuses
Former Ill. Governor Headed To Prison Guardian Unlimited he will serve his 6-year sentence for corruption..... The pharmacist-turned-governor, who gained international acclaim for his opposition to the death penalty, has said he will fight to clear his name even while sitting in prison. ..... I have said since the beginning of this 10-year ordeal that I am innocent and I intend to prove that ..... Ryan's typical work day will begin at 7:30 a.m. and include duties such as mopping floors, cleaning toilets, raking leaves, cutting grass, painting and shoveling snow ...... Ryan was convicted of steering big-money state contracts to friends, using state money and state workers to run his campaigns and killing an investigation of bribes paid for truck driver's licenses.
US Strikes Delicate Balance on Pakistan NPR California Rep. Tom Lantos and Delaware Sen. Joe Biden each got an unlikely phone call on Tuesday — from the president of Pakistan, Gen. Pervez Musharraf ....... the delicate balancing act Washington has had to undertake — promoting democracy and stability in Pakistan while working with a military strongman to combat terrorism. ....... by failing to strongly support democracy, we are undermining support for an effective long-term counterterrorism policy within Pakistan. ....... parallels to the overthrow of the Shah of Iran 30 years ago. The U.S. backed the Shah and had no back-up plan.
New York Democrats Say License Issue Had Little Effect New York Times, United States overwhelming public opposition to the proposal. ...... significant victories in several county races upstate ....... And Mr. Spitzer, whose poll numbers have slipped as a result of the issue, played a muted role on the stump, a sharp contrast to his highly visible efforts during the 2006 campaign and during a State Senate special election last winter. ..... anger clearly existed over Mr. Spitzer’s proposal — as well as his bout with scandal and his battles with Albany Republicans ...... New York’s Republican Party has come a long way in the past 12 months ...... she would report to the county sheriff anyone applying for a driver’s license without a valid visa. ..... In Monroe County, Democrats won one hard-fought legislative seat despite a late effort to blanket the area with mailers that charged local Democrats with aiding terrorists because of their support for Mr. Spitzer’s licensing plan. ...... Though the seat will not by itself swing control of the County Legislature, Democrats hope it will presage a strong effort next year against two Rochester-area Republicans in the State Senate. ...... Privately, many said they expected the issue to be off the table by next year, though neither Mr. Spitzer nor his Republican opponents in Albany show any sign of letting the matter drop.
Dubious Fees Hit Borrowers in Foreclosures
First thoughts: Election results MSNBC the DSCC is gloating about the Kentucky result, since Fletcher was a protege of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. Yet McConnell -- unofficially at least -- did try and find a candidate to knock off his one-time ally in the GOP primary, but that failed. McConnell is probably on the DSCC's second-tier target list for 2008. But given McConnell's high profile, look for the Democrats to talk up this race a lot, since McConnell's numbers aren't exactly stellar these days. Countdown to Iowa: 57 days Countdown to New Hampshire: 62 days Countdown to Michigan: 69 days Countdown to Nevada and SC GOP primary: 73 days Countdown to SC Dem primary: 80 days Countdown to Florida: 83 days Countdown to Tsunami Tuesday: 90 days Countdown to Election Day 2008: 363 days Countdown to Inauguration Day 2009: 440 days
Spitzer-Bruno war threatens to stall state budget Newsday, NY Eliot Spitzer's raucous first year as governor ...... Spitzer and Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno (R-Brunswick) remain engaged in a partisan war that is widely expected to extend at least until next year's election, when the results of Democratic efforts to take over the Senate will be known. ..... cannot recall relations as strained...... Bruno and Spitzer are not speaking

Pat Robertson Backs Giuliani Guardian Unlimited
Bhutto Marshals Opposition As Protests in Pakistan Escalate Wall Street Journal
Turkish-Bred Prosperity Makes War Less Likely in Iraqi Kurdistan New York Times
Spears ordered to pay K-Fed's legal fees United Press International
Obama Rejects Bill Clinton's Criticism
The Associated Press
Edwards says he has better track record than Obama Nashua Telegraph
Obama Opposes Federal Mining Reform Bill
The Associated Press because he says it would be too burdensome on the industry and could end up costing miners jobs in Nevada and other states. ..... Reid, a gold miner's son and longtime supporter of the industry, has said the House bill "won't stand" in the Senate. The White House also has threatened a veto.
Alibaba vs. Google: Showdown in Asia? ABC News
Amitabh Bachchan’s mother shifted to ICU
Sify Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan's mother Teji Bachchan (93), who has been in Lilavati Hospital here for sometime now, was shifted to its intensive care unit (ICU) after she took seriously ill on Wednesday ...... Members of the Bachchan family visited her in the hospital
Dell in the M&A Fast Lane Motley Fool
Dell Paying $1.4 Billion for EqualLogic
PC World

Key Pakistanis challenge Musharraf Los Angeles Times
Bhutto Raises Heat on Musharraf Wall Street Journal Bhutto plans to meet with opposition parties today to initiate nationwide protests against the state of emergency ...... Hundreds of Islamic militants, meanwhile, seized a town in northwest Pakistan after outnumbered security forces laid down their arms
Pakistani Lawyers’ Anger Grew as Hope for Changes Withered New York Times
Kentucky Governor Loses to Democratic Challenger New York Times
Takahashi: Google alliance may stop wireless firms' gouging of users
San Jose Mercury News
Obama Rejects Bill Clinton's Criticism
Guardian Unlimited
Commentary: Clinton camp wrong to play the gender card
Edwards's strategy could benefit Obama Boston Globe Edwards is a man on a mission - to expose the vagaries and equivocations of Hillary Clinton. ..... It's a powerful critique, rooted enough in what voters have seen of Clinton that it just might succeed in handing the Democratic nomination to Senator Barack Obama ....... Dean himself, who was leading in all the polls with just weeks until voting began ....... Kerry took a middle ground, remaining largely above the fray, but rarely missing an opportunity to portray Dean as rash and extreme, to the point of ignoring America's interests. When Saddam Hussein was captured and Dean predicted it would make no difference in the Iraqi insurgency, Kerry portrayed it as a crazy statement from a dangerous ideologue. ........ Obama, who has maintained a Kerry-like posture, is ready to reap any of the votes that Edwards succeeds in peeling away from Clinton. ...... There are many reasons to believe that Clinton won't collapse like Dean. She's a far more disciplined candidate. And unlike Dean, who was a new face to most voters, Clinton is the best-known person in the Democratic field.
Bill Clinton and 2 Candidates Spar Over Debate Remarks New York Times
Obama Opens Iowa Campaign Swing
FOX News
Obama hits Clinton on a sacred topic: ethanol Baltimore Sun
Obama runs new radio ad in SC
Boston Globe
Clinton Charges Through Iowa, Opponents React to Swift Boat Claim FOX News
Clinton Now Says Licenses for Illegal Immigrants Depends on the State
FOX News
Edwards Steps Up Attack on Clinton in Iowa Over Iran (Update1)
Nepal village women mail condoms for husbands working abroad
International Herald Tribune
China Plans to Launch Space Station
FOX News
Facebook Declares New Era for Advertising
Facebook to Turn Users Into Endorsers New York Times Facebook had had 50 million users in the last month. And 25 million users visit Facebook each day. The company displays 65 billion pages on which advertisements can be displayed each month.
Google's Android has long road ahead CNET

Clinton's Support Among Liberals is Rising Washington Post Clinton's support among liberals is actually rising, not falling, as the nomination debate has intensified. ....... The opposite has happened to Barack Obama. His support among liberals has actually declined over the course of the campaign. He began the year with the support of 33 percent of liberals, topped out at 36 percent in July and now has drifted down to 25 percent. ......... If Clinton's opponents believe she is vulnerable because of her positions on Iraq and Iran, the polls do not bear it out. ....... 45 percent of those who support immediate withdrawal said they prefer Clinton as the Democratic nominee compared to 26 percent for Obama. ....... What's interesting about all these results is that they run counter to the implications of the campaign debate. ....... She is the candidate who defended taking money from Washington lobbyists and who argued that the only practical way to bring about change is by working within the current system, not by trying to fundamentally change it ....... Finally she is a Clinton, the spouse of a president whom many liberal Democrats believe moved the party too much toward the center, who created an unholy alliance with corporate and moneyed interests and whose economic policies catered more to Wall Street bond dealers than average workers. ........ John Kerry's electability counted for more than Dean's opposition to the war. That same calculation may be at work in the 2008 nomination fight. ..... But there is an important chapter still to be played out. Clinton's opponents have just begun to sharpen their criticism of her and by December it's likely that television ads in Iowa will be airing that directly attack her.
Obama's backers worried Cincinnati Post CHICAGO - These are difficult days for supporters of Barack Obama. This city is filled with people who have voted for, worked for, contributed to, and, in many cases, prayed for the success of the young senator from Illinois. The struggle he has had in trying to overtake Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination is wearing on their morale. ......... the crucial days in Iowa and New Hampshire are still ahead; and that there is time for Obama to close with a rush, as he did when he came from behind to capture the nomination for his Senate seat back in 2004. ........ the steady drumbeat of polls showing Clinton with more support than all the other Democrats combined - and twice as much as Obama - is taking a toll. ...... The elevated stature he enjoyed nationally was nothing compared to the near reverence he commands among his friends here. Those I met who have worked closely with him through the past decade in politics, community affairs or the anti-war movement exhaust the list of superlatives in speaking about him and his wife, Michelle. .......... They see Obama as someone uniquely positioned to heal a divided nation - and to change the image of America in the world, simply by virtue of his own history and personality. They can visualize the headlines and television coverage around the globe if he were elected to the White House. ...... he has been outmaneuvered and outsmarted by Clinton's timing and tactics ....... The speech that he delivered at DePaul University .... it got next to no national press coverage. ...... the voters in those states are far less firmly attached to their current candidate preferences than polling numbers would suggest.
Obama Raises Money in Caribbean The Associated Press
Candidate's Star Power Has Yet to Translate Into Poll Numbers
ABC News Obama's brief appearance this weekend in the opening skit of "Saturday Night Live" marks a coup for his campaign. ....... smiles through gritted teeth. "Well that's just great," she growls. ..... Obama has shown plenty of times that he can be funny and self-deprecating. This time he showed he was edgy. ....... Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani was almost a cast member on "SNL"-- although he usually appeared in drag. .... Fred Thompson announced his candidacy on "The Tonight Show" with Jay Leno, even though making that appearance meant skipping a Republican candidate debate. ...... Bill Clinton pioneered the political cameo, the night he famously played the sax on "Arsenio Hall." ....... But Obama has raised it to an art form.He danced with Ellen DeGeneres. He chatted with Tyra Banks about who should play him in the movie (a toss-up between Denzel Washington or Will Smith, they decided). And, of course, his couch time on "Oprah" has meant millions for his campaign. ....... he is doing Gibson, Williams and Couric. He's doing Nightline ....... President Reagan did not dance with Princess Diana. Instead he drafted John Travolta to do it for him.
Clinton Defends Wife on Licenses The Associated Press "It's fine for Hillary and all the other Democrats to discuss Governor Spitzer's plan. But not in 30 seconds — yes, no, raise your hand," he said. ....... He compared the driver's license dustup to television ads during the 2004 presidential campaign that questioned Kerry's patriotism, and campaign commercials in 2002 suggesting that former Sen. Max Cleland, D-Ga., who lost three limbs in Vietnam, was soft on terrorism.
No Gphone, Google bets on Android Business Standard Google has unveiled an ambitious strategy that will make cellphones cheaper and speed up internet surfing. ...... the new platform called Android should reduce the prices of today’s $500 smart phones to around $100-150 in a year or so ...... Smart phones are cell phones that run business applications like documents, spreadsheets and presentations. ...... Google has partnered with 34 technology and mobile companies — under the Open Handset Alliance (OHA) — to develop Android. ...... platform is “open”, which means the source code can be altered by developers for use on handsets. ..... “Open source reduces the cost of software which comprises a major chunk of the cellphone cost”
Alibaba soars in biggest net float since Google Times Online, the world's biggest online marketplace for international and domestic Chinese trade ....... Asia's second-largest Internet company by market value after Yahoo! Japan ...... Alibaba, founded and chaired by Jack Ma, a former schoolteacher, in 1999 ....... the voracious appetite for China-related stocks, despite global uncertainty caused by the US sub-prime mortgage-related crisis. ...... Yesterday, PetroChina became the world's first $1 trillion company on its first day of trading. ....... the biggest technology IPO since Google raised $1.66 billion in 2004. ........ Alibaba offers small to medium-sized Chinese manufacturers a way to sell their products across the world. ....... free listings for suppliers and buyers. .... Revenue is derived from members who pay for additional services such as search listings or factory inspections. ..... reported earnings of 295.2 million yuan (£19 million) in the first six months of this year. ........ the Alibaba Group, which includes Yahoo!'s China operation and, China's biggest online auction site. ..... Yahoo! holds a 39 per cent stake in the parent company. ..... Other investors in the IPO included Cisco Systems and Hon Hai Precision Industry, of Taiwan. ..... The company started with fewer than 20 staff and now has 4,400 employees.

Mukasey nomination clears hurdle Los Angeles Times
Pakistan's courts in lockdown
CNN International
Ousted Justice in Pakistan Urges Defiance New York Times
Nepal anger at killing by Maoists BBC News
NTPC, Railways form JV for 1000MW Bihar plant Business Standard
Sarkozy Whirling Into Washington New York Times

Google lays out mobile strategy Chicago Tribune In the second major announcement this year by a Silicon Valley stalwart that aims to shake up the way people use mobile phones, Google Inc. officially announced Monday a sweeping plan to encourage a new breed of software development designed to make it easier to surf the Internet from a cell phone. ...... a newly created global coalition of companies, called the Open Handset Alliance, that includes phonemaker Motorola Inc. and wireless carriers Sprint Nextel and T-Mobile. ....... the Google software platform could be available on countless phones and sold through multiple carriers. ..... This is a developer announcement. … You can now build the great things you've done on the Internet" on a mobile phone........ "The mobile Web is a myth that has not been attained yet" ...... Notably absent from the alliance were the nation's two largest mobile carriers, AT&T and Verizon Wireless.

Ron Paul Raises $3.68 Million on Guy Fawkes Day New York Times
Nepal Left parties come closer Hindustan Times The CPN(UML), one of the major factions of the ruling alliance, on Monday ruled out the possibility of political polarisation. The UML is being blamed for joining hands with the “ultra-left” Maoists. ..... a strong rumour has been hovering around the political circle that the UML supported the Maoist proposal for proportional electoral system following a unwritten agreement between the two parties. The agreement included supporting CPN(UML) leader Madhav Kumar Nepal as the new prime Minister of the country, while Maoist leader Baburam Bhattarai would be the Deputy Prime Minister. ...... “But adopting a fully proportional system would take much more time,” a senior EC official said, adding that new election laws and ruled will have to be passed by the interim Parliament.
Will War Worries Hit Turkey's Economy? BusinessWeek
Obama Raises Money in Caribbean
The Associated Press
The 2008 Primaries: A Long, Hard Slog?
Washington Post talk of an extended primary fight has become more than just a political junkie's pipe dream. ...... several candidates from each party will be able to claim enough states to keep them viable well beyond the so-called Tsunami Tuesday on Feb. 5. ........ a protracted primary campaign is a distinct possibility on the Republican side. ...... "The odds are one in three that there will be a frontrunner but no nominee after Feb. 5," Gingrich said in a recent interview. "Anyone who is still standing...will have a real incentive to keep in the race until the convention because it gets so much less expensive." ........ 33 percent -- the first time in three decades that the Republican frontrunner is not polling over 40 percent in surveys conducted this deep into an election campaign. ....... Clinton holds a 49 percent to 26 percent lead ....... the largest and most expensive states -- California, Illinois, New York ...... Maryland and Virginia host primaries on Feb. 12; Wisconsin and Washington go on Feb. 19 ....... March 4 .. Ohio and Texas ..... "Never in primary history have you had two candidates in the same party with the resources of Clinton and Obama" ....... "Both have the chance to plan beyond Feb. 5th." ...... money and organization will be far less important should the nomination fight extend beyond Feb.5 ...... the sheer cost of campaigning in California could well deliver that delegate treasure trove to her on name identification alone. ........ If Obama and Clinton split the first four states -- Iowa and South Carolina for Obama, New Hampshire and Nevada for Clinton -- it seems extremely likely that each will come out of Feb. 5 with enough victories (and delegates) to make the case that he or she should fight on.
Clinton Energy Plan Includes Push for Higher Gas Mileage New York Times
Edwards accuses Clinton of duplicity
Edwards Faults Clinton on Foreign Policy The Associated Press
Edwards Raises Criticism of Clinton Over Iraq Plan New York Times
Clinton Invokes Gore on the Trail New York Times
In Iowa Field, Edwards Sees Only Clinton New York Times exhibiting a fresh ferocity in his second run at the White House. ...... “If the American people understood what’s going on all over, there would be a revolution tomorrow morning” ........ “I’m with you, brother!” Mr. Edwards replied ....... an urgent tone of anger and aggression ...... These days, he does not leave a room before telling his audience why he believes she should not — and cannot — be elected president. ...... Edwards seldom mentions Mr. Obama ....... he cannot proceed without a strong finish in Iowa ....... he threatens to take away health insurance for members of Congress if they do not overhaul the system by July 2009, six months after he would take office. ........ they said they welcomed his pointing out differences, because they were having a difficult time choosing a candidate. ........ a real risk of them beating each other up
Clinton to negotiate Kyoto’s successor Financial Times
Clinton Rebuts Accusations of Secrecy New York Times my husband has never blocked a record ever. He has been the most forthcoming of all presidents." ...... In a 2002 letter from Mr. Clinton to the National Archives, which controls his papers, Mr. Clinton wrote that documents including communication between the two Clintons “should generally be considered for withholding” until 2012.
China oil giant is world's biggest its shares almost trebled on their first day of trading in Shanghai. ...... strong corporate profit growth and the general health of Asian economies.
PetroChina equals Indian economy Sify Imagine a single Chinese company with a market value that's about the size of India's $1 trillion economy. That mind-boggling prospect became a reality on Monday when PetroChina, China's state-owned oil and gas giant, became the world's first company to exceed $1 trillion in market capitalisation following its dazzling debut on Shanghai's manic stock market. ....... the company was valued at $1.2 trillion, more than twice as much as the next biggest - US energy behemoth Exxon-Mobil, with a market cap of $490 billion. ...... the market cap of the entire Indian stock market is about $1.6 trillion; and India's most valuable company - Reliance Industries, which is no pushover either - is worth about $100 billion ........ PetroChina does not make into the list of world's top 50 companies by profits. ...... PetroChina virtually single-handedly elevated China to the third place in the global ranking, based on market cap, displacing the UK. ...... Mainland China's stock market, which has tripled in the past two years, is valued at $4.5 trillion, within striking distance of Japan ($4.8 trillion), but still a long way behind the US ($18.3 trillion). On the market-cap measure, China is now home to five of the world's 10 biggest companies.

Dreaming of one President for Europe The Economist
Coup number two In an e-mail from house arrest, where she has been placed for 90 days, Ms Jahangir regretted that General Musharraf had “lost his marbles”. ...... midnight televised address ...... “I cannot allow this country to commit suicide.” ....... and his urge to “preserve the democratic transition that I initiated eight years back”. ..... “the extremists don’t fear law enforcement agencies.” ....... American aid to his government—which has amounted to over $10 billion since 2001 ...... So far, Ms Bhutto has roundly condemned the emergency as martial law by another name. But she has not yet rallied her followers against it.
In God's name
To avoid the Big C, stay small

Citigroup Turns to Robert Rubin BusinessWeek
A Wireless Revolution in India The number of Indian consumers connecting to the Internet via cell phones more than doubled, to 38 million from 16 million just last year ....... the world's fastest-growing mobile-phone market, where more than 200 million people use mobile phones and 7 million are added to the rolls each month. ......... the frailties of India's traditional Internet networks ..... the number of Internet connections via the PC declined, from 9.27 million in the first quarter to 9.22 million in the second quarter ...... Wireless phones can be bought right off store shelves, with Web connections set up instantly. ....... Nokia (NOK), Samsung Electronics (SSNLF), and Motorola sell mobile phones in villages for as little as $63. ..... fees of $2.50 to $12.50 a month ....... Downloadable ringtones are already a $45 million annual business in India and are expected to grow at a double-digit rate through 2010. ...... ringtones account for nearly half of all nonvoice revenue.
Apple, Google vs. Big Wireless
Getting Inside Google's gPhone
Skype Goes Mobile
A 4G Standards War Is Brewing

New York City For Barack Obama 11
New York City For Barack Obama 10


He is such a great leader, I like him very much, his thoughts are always bold and brave...