Wiretap: Jobs, Obamacare both booming

The nation’s jobs report is really good. In the last 12 months the economy added 2.38 million jobs. Steve Benen sums it up: “2014 is currently on track to be the best year for U.S. job creation since 1999.”

The news has generated lots of happy dances and sniping in the election-year politics twittersphere. For example:


Also this: Since Obamacare passed, the nation has seen 1 million jobs gained in the health care sector. So not the end of the economy — or Anything. At. All. Like. That. So Fox News is sure to post a correction in reference to the entirety of its last five years of broadcasting.

Simon Maloy reports at Salon on the calm and rational bipartisan confirmation of Sylvia Mathews Burwell as new Secretary of Health and Human Services. Where was the grandstanding, the badgering and waving in the air of canceled policy notices? Nowhere. Maloy says the game is over for Republican critics of Obamacare who have been riding the “repeal and replace” bandwagon. Fact is, “they would now have to move tens of millions of people off their government-provided health care.”

Talking Points Memo posts a primer on the odd tale of the Mississippi “Tea Party trio,” or the “Mississippi courthouse caper,” where three supporters of Tea Party U.S. Senate candidate Chris McDaniel found themselves locked in a county courthouse vote center in the middle of the night, long after poll workers went home, and can’t seem to give a straight answer to authorities on what the hell they were doing there.

Were they tampering with votes? Could they have been? The Brad Blog called a clerk and asked all the right questions.

Amy Davidson at the New Yorker: “How do three campaign officials come to be discovered locked in a courthouse — one in which primary precinct returns are also locked — in the middle of the night? Put differently, can the race for the Mississippi Republican Senate nomination look any more like playground pretense of what a political campaign should be?”

This is big: Washington Post – ABC News poll finds a majority of Americans now believe the U.S. Constitution protects gay people equally and grants them the right to marry.

Greg Sargent at the Washington Post writes on how Republican candidates suddenly are groping for a viable position on climate change. Case in point? He points to Colorado US Senate candidate Cory Gardner’s *maybe yes maybe no but we can’t do anything about it* position. Or in Gardner’s words: “I think the climate is changing, but I don’t believe humans are causing that change to the extent that’s been in the news.” It’s the kind of position that leaves Republicans wide open to attack — or vulnerable even to straight questions looking for straight answers. Sargent puts it this way: “Of course, even as they acknowledge climate change is a reality, many Republicans are blasting the new EPA rules designed to do something about it, as Land does above. In theory that would seem to provide Dems an opening to pillory their opponents as anti-science and so imprisoned by ideology that they are unwilling or unable to offer solutions to major challenges facing the country — challenges even they are prepared to acknowledge exist.”

Because: The narrative is changing; it’s not just about the environment anymore, it’s about health and safety.

Jon Stewart on gun rights madness. “We are at the intersection of open carry road and stand your ground place … According to the NRA’s basic principles, you have a right to carry a weapon that may cause a reasonable person to believe they are in danger of great bodily injury, and they have a right, if they feel that way, to respond with deadly force. It’s a perpetual violence machine.”

The latest from the Jefferson County school district, site of ongoing conservative-politics “reform” movement takeover. On Thursday, the new board majority rejected a contract agreement hammered out with teachers at the beginning of May. JeffCo Education Association President John Ford: “Tonight’s decision marks the first time ever in the history of Jefferson County Public Schools that a Board voted to not ratify a tentative contract agreement with educators after their negotiations team signed off on that agreement.  Unfortunately, their decision to break with history leaves the future of our negotiations uncertain.”  It’s unclear what the sticking point was. Maybe the average 2.5 percent increase for teachers in good standing? The agreement is here.

And, yes, the Beastie Boys won $1.7 million from Monster Energy Drinks, which used the Beasties’ songs to peddle their snake oil.