Hold Fast

A Blog by Matt Browner Hamlin

Hold Fast - a blog by Matt Browner Hamlin

Entries from November 2009

Stupid Amendments

November 30th, 2009 · 1 Comment

Steve Benen, writing on the Republican strategy to slow health care reform legislation through amendments, notes: Ordinarily, amendments are proposed to improve the bill. It’s what makes the Republican amendments pointless — even if their measures pass, they’ll still oppose reform. But the GOP caucus is nevertheless lining up hundreds of possible proposals. They’re also […]

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Tags: Health Care · Republicans

NYT on Ai Weiwei

November 29th, 2009 · Comments Off on NYT on Ai Weiwei

Saturday’s New York Times had a must-read article on Chinese artist and political dissident, Ai Weiwei. Ai was the primary architect of China’s Olympic Birds Nest stadium, yet became an outspoken critic of the Chinese government leading up to the Olympics in response to the government’s repression of petitioners and rights advocates. Ai has faced […]

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Tags: Tibet & China

Taibbi on the Marginalizing of the Republican Base

November 24th, 2009 · Comments Off on Taibbi on the Marginalizing of the Republican Base

Matt Taibbi, writing at True/Slant, has a must-read analysis of the mainstream media Village culture, as it pertains to Sarah Palin. Or, more specifically, how groupthink by Beltway journalists regarding when to promote a politician and when to aim for their head has coalesced behind further marginalizing Palin and by extension her Teabag supporters. While […]

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Tags: Sarah Palin · The Media

A Retiring Blue Dog

November 23rd, 2009 · Comments Off on A Retiring Blue Dog

Blue Dog Democrat Dennis Moore (KS-03) is retiring. Naturally, Chuck Todd thinks this is apocalyptic for Democrats: The Moore retirement is one that should have some House Dem leaders nervous (as well as the WH), the party can’t afford more like Moore. Twitter One reason why 2010 doesn’t look like 1994 is that Dems haven’t […]

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Tags: Democrats · Elections

Oh Really?

November 23rd, 2009 · Comments Off on Oh Really?

Carl Hulse of the New York Times, reporting on Democratic efforts to get moderate Republicans to support health care reform, writes: While the two women are the main focus of Democrats at the moment, officials said they would seek opportunities to appeal to others. They also hope any final joint House-Senate proposal could attract at […]

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Tags: Health Care

Senate Health Care Bill

November 19th, 2009 · Comments Off on Senate Health Care Bill

I don’t think it’s a surprise to anyone that, on first blush, the Senate health care reform bill isn’t as good as the House health care reform bill. That said, I think the bill — again, on first blush — is far better than what I had expected from Senator Reid. There is an opt-out […]

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Tags: Health Care

Schrei’s Open Letter to Obama

November 18th, 2009 · Comments Off on Schrei’s Open Letter to Obama

Josh Schrei has written an open letter to President Obama following his trip to China. It’s powerful, honest and true. Here’s a passage: As a lifelong Tibet supporter, I have endured 15 years of meetings with Senators, Representatives, and Chiefs of Staff and have been told roughly the same thing in every single meeting. We […]

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Tags: Barack Obama · Tibet & China

Coming Away with Nothing

November 18th, 2009 · Comments Off on Coming Away with Nothing

There was a great deal of hoopla last month when President Obama broke with tradition and declined to meet with the Dalai Lama when he was in Washington, DC. While no American president has had a formal state visit with the Dalai Lama in the Oval Office, presidents of both parties have made it tradition […]

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Tags: Barack Obama · Tibet & China

Dear Jim Wallis

November 17th, 2009 · Comments Off on Dear Jim Wallis

Dear Jim Wallis, The Stupak Amendment does not achieve “neutrality” by the government when it comes to funding abortion coverage. It makes it impossible for a woman to buy insurance that covers abortions, which are, by the way, legal procedures in America. By creating a two-tiered health care system where wealthy women can have abortion […]

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Tags: Health Care · Human Rights


November 17th, 2009 · 2 Comments

The Times Online: China rounds up dissidents as President Obama touches down in Beijing Chinese officials have rounded up dozens of Beijings’s tiny coterie of activists and petitioners in case any dissident tries to approach President Obama, who arrived in the city today. The arrests continued to gather momentum even as Mr Obama told an […]

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Tags: Barack Obama · Tibet & China