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In order to keep up with the nature of free, spirited debate, I wanted to place the chat feature at the top of the homepage. This ensures people can come here and share their views on anything they wish and not have it be related to any specific discussion. Here, people can share ideas, links, and views "unmoderated" and an their own pace. To me, this makes The Elephant in the Room blog truly a place for debate.

Monday, March 26, 2012

March 26, 2012 - Morning Headlines

- The Supreme Court will begin hearing arguments about the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act (known by many as Obamacare) today (CNN):

- Speaking at a summit in South Korea, President Obama urged North Korea to step back from its pursuit of nuclear weapons and advanced rocketry in the wake of its announced long-range missile launch (Fox News):

- The lead prosecutor in the Trayvon Martin case states that bringing charges against alleged killer George Zimmerman could prove difficul (ABC News):

UPDATE (9:37am)

 - Open mic catches Obama talking to Russian president over missile defense issues:


     Fox News:

     ABC News:


  1. Article that caught my attention most this morning:

    No secret I think that super PAC funding is out of control; for both sides of the election.

    We regulate the influence that large amounts of money can have over people in many aspects of life and business in our country. I have no idea why this same kind of regulation wouldn't apply for something as important as who is elected to major positions of power and influence in the country.

    1. Citizens United shows that legislating from the bench can come from the right and left.

      Why would we trust those goons to be without bias on Obamacare?

    2. Let me guess. You are one of these people that talk about Citizens United like you know what it is, but you really don't have a clue. You believe what the media tells you, but in the end, you are clueless.

      You probably think it "gives corporations the same rights as people."

      Read the case, it 100% does not.

    3. Haj: Thanks for supplying the ad hominem, but you're incorrect in all of your assumptions about me.

      I would love to hear arguments against my actual point.

    4. Rken: I don't see how that's ad hominem, but either way, it wasn't directed at you. I was actually talking to Anon since he referenced CU.

      Either way, CU was correctly decided to protect freedom. I know you think that it's bad, but we cannot impose the kind of limits needed to, in your opinion, stop the "influence" simply because we don't like it. What kind of society would we live in if the government could limit the freedom of expression, speech, et al for some but not others simply because it doesn't go along with what the "little guy" likes.

      But yes, to keep with fact, CU did not grant corporations the same rights as people. This is the biggest misconception out there, and I want to make sure the facts are known.

    5. Ah, sorry, my mistake then Haj. I thought your post was directed at me.

      I don't believe it's a matter of stopping the influence simply because we don't like it, I think it's far too easily an avenue towards corrupting the system. There's a reason that we regulate this form of "influence" just about everywhere else it could matter. Insider trading, bribery, extortion, blackmail, etc, regulate every major private/public entity, business and industry in protecting this influence from unfairly bearing weight on actions and decisions of others. I don't see why this would play any different in how our political system is financed.

      At the same time I do believe it’s a very difficult issue to address, and is not as simple as many may think it is. But political campaign reform has been ignored and/or swept aside for a long time, and this super PAC issue only stands to make it worse.

  2. Thank you for the info, RKen. I like when people add to this. I just post this every morning as a quick source of "what's in the news today." I like when people share other stories they think are significant. I believe it helps share more info, especially to all the people who have direct RSS or email feeds. Thank you.

    My biggest comment is about the update. I just want to say, "um, hello?! Press... where are you? You jumps SOOOOOOOOOO heavily on Mitt Romney's senior adviser for a comment taken WAYYYYYY out of context... I hope this gets equally fair treatment."

    To me, it really should. This is saying that the president governs differently relative to getting elected. It's saying that how he governs really depends on how people are swayed into voting for him. Blind, nondiscriminatory governing is irrelevant, I lead around my election, not in spite of it...

    Additionally, is this Obama's "etch-a-sketch?" Isn't this saying, "once the election is over, I can change how I do things?" The etch-a-sketch comment regarding Mitt Romney was taken out of context. His senior adviser was stating that once it's Mitt v. Obama in the general election, the CAMPAIGN strategy changes, not Romney's positions. Isn't this the case, however, with Obama's comment to the Russian President. Isn't he actually saying, "yes, once the election is over, my position, ability to govern, focus, etc. will be different?"

    1. This is so much worse than you're making out to be, LME. Look at what Obama actually said:

      "This is my last election," Obama told Medvedev. "After my election I have more flexibility."

      Don't you find this particularly sleazy? "Pssst, hey, you know, I only have to get through one more election... once these people vote for me and we get that out of the way, I can work better at this?"

      I think you're letting Obama off the hook too easily.

    2. And thank you as well for the update! I may have missed the article otherwise.

      I don't quite find this display of election-year politics to be all that alarming or new. It's commonplace for major issues of foreign and home policy to be put on hold during election year, so not to provide easy ammo on commonly divisive issues. Republicans are just as guilty of doing it as Democrats.

      This is why Obamacare was pushed early in Obama’s term, because if it was pushed now it would’ve been easy fodder for not re-electing Obama. But as time has passed, support for the bill has grown and the opposition has dwindled, making it a far more minor re-election issue now.

      This isn't to say I agree with the practice, but I understand it and why it exists.

      As for the issue itself, a missile defense system in Europe has been opposed by Russia for a while now. Asking for space on the issue isn’t very controversial, unless I’m missing something?

    3. I agree with you... unfortunately, it's 10:59 and I have to run to an 11:00 meeting.

      My only issue is, the media (assumption here, no facts.......... yet :-) ) will NOT cover this "open mic" thing like it covered the etch-a-sketch thing. Regardless of what people think of the actual etch-a-sketch comment, it was still blown way out of proportion. To me, again, actual comments aside, this should be covered just as much if the media was "fair."

      Have a great morning. I hope to be able to write more soon.

      I hope there will also be a ton of discussion in the Obamacare open forum. It's a historic day, and I'd love to learn and have other people learn what Americans think of the topic.

    4. With regards to Trayvon Marton case, all I gotta say is duke rape case. let's wait till we get all the fact, and let the justice department do its job