April 23, 2014

Wednesday Open Thread: Showstoppers! African American Milliners

Happy Hump Day POU!

We continue looking at the artistry of Milliners. Today we travel to Baltimore to take a look at the talents of Phyllis Eley.

A hat block stands on a table in front of 68-year-old Phyllis Eley. It’s just a piece of balsa wood, carved in the shape of a woman’s head. But when Eley takes this inanimate object in her hands, it seems to take on life. The block becomes a model, a stand-in for the woman who will wear a Phyllis Eley creation on the top of her head.

Eley, who works out of a shop in Pikesville, is an artist, a maker of women’s hats, also known as a milliner. Millinery isn’t a term used often these days. Its heyday dates back to a time when hats were de rigeur, when a woman without a hat wasn’t completely dressed. These were women who shared Eley’s philosophy, that a “custom-made hat is the ultimate accessory for an outfit.”

That time is long gone, but, every May, the tradition returns to Baltimore. That’s when women join the pageantry of Preakness by donning fabulous headwear.

A milliner cannot make a living on Preakness alone. And these days, most women think of hats as only a special occasion accessory. Yet, Eley is a living reminder that the milliner’s art is not gone. In fact, as Mark Twain might say, rumors of its death are greatly exaggerated.

Although most women today choose not to wear the big fancy hats as their grandmothers and great-grandmothers did in years past. Phyllis Eley says those women just “don’t know what they’re missing.” 

Eley was in her early twenties when she discovered her love for hat-making 43 years ago. She enrolled in a class at the Baltimore YWCA and was instructed by two prominent African-American milliners Nell Sheridan and Sophie Myers. They taught Phyllis the basics of the craft, but Eley didn’t stop there. Before long, she taught herself to create all kinds of hats and their trims, entirely by hand. She’s a stickler for detail.

“I’m particular about construction,” she says. “Everything must be securely sewn.”

Back in the ’60s, Eley remembers she bought most of her supplies at a shop on Mulberry Street at American Trimming House owned by Al Schalane, where “a hat block cost $14.”

Today, she says they’re seven times that much. Making hats was not a full-time job for Eley. In fact, it was more like a hobby. She worked for the phone company Bell System for 32 years. “But once I retired,” she says with a smile, “I found my true calling.”

About 18 years ago, Eley was selling her creations at a benefit fashion show when a store owner from Pikesville approached her and asked if she would work for her. There was a large market for hats in Pikesville among the Orthodox Jewish community, whose women keep their heads covered at all times. Eley took the job.

Today, she works at another Pikesville shop called Hats to Hose, and still has an eclectic clientele. Some of her customers are Jewish. Many are African-American. Others just seek her out year-round, especially at Preakness time.

This is an exciting time for Eley because, she says, customers going to the Preakness race are willing to be more daring, and it gives her the chance to be really creative. She says women feel special in their Preakness hats, and “they could feel just as special for other occasions if they would just consider wearing a hat.

In addition to making her own hats, Eley sells and sizes ready-made hats and restores vintage hats. Sometimes customers ask her to completely restyle an older hat.

That is a delicate task. First, Eley carefully pulls the old hat apart, keeping fabric and trim perfectly intact.

She then cuts out a shape for her new hat from buckram (a coarse, stiff cloth), wets the buckram to make it pliable, and molds it onto the hat block. When it dries, it has the shape of the hat-to-be.

Then, with scissors and pins, Eley cuts the fabric and pieces together a little work of art, to be sewn, finished, and presented to the customer.

“That’s the wonderful part,” she says, “when they see it, and love it, and appreciate my work.”

Oh, yes, they appreciate it. Customer Naon Locust calls Eley “a gem, a hidden gem here in Baltimore.”

Customer Dena Soclof agrees. Eley made hats for her for all her daughters’ and granddaughters’ weddings. “Her work is outstanding,” she says.

Hats to Hose co-owner Linda Elman says simply, “I always tell people that Phyllis has golden hands.”

Eley herself is almost never without a hat—usually a custom-made one at that. But young people today, when they do buy hats, tend to buy off the rack. So, what does the future hold for the art of millinery?

The term “milliner” comes from the city of Milan, Italy, where you could find suppliers of fancy goods in the 16th and 17th centuries.  Author Debbie Henderson says milliners are coming off the endangered species list. “There’s an amazing resurgence, and there are young men and women going to fashion schools studying millinery,” she says. “There are a lot of new milliners creating exciting styles, especially in Europe.”

There’s no telling when those styles may make it to Baltimore, but, if nothing else, some future milliners may learn their art in Charm City. Annet Couwenberg, a professor at the Maryland Institute College of Art, teaches a class called Fashioning Culture/Readdressing Clothing.

“The first thing I teach in that course is millinery,” she says. “I find it important that students realize the craftsmanship used in traditional millinery techniques. I want them to interpret hats as fine artists.” 

So women’s hats, and the talented milliners who make them, live on.

  • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

    Mornin’ POU!

    That black and white hat is gorgeous!

    • qosine

      Good Morning, Sepia!

    • rigoletta

      OMG yes. I want that hat!

  • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

    The story behind “that selfie”

    By Roberto Schmidt

    …Anyway, suddenly this woman pulled out her mobile phone and took a photo of herself smiling with Cameron and the US president. I captured the scene reflexively. All around me in the stadium, South Africans were dancing, singing and laughing to honour their departed leader. It was more like a carnival atmosphere, not at all morbid. The ceremony had already gone on for two hours and would last another two. The atmosphere was totally relaxed – I didn’t see anything shocking in my viewfinder, president of the US or not. We are in Africa.

    I later read on social media that Michelle Obama seemed to be rather
    peeved on seeing the Danish prime minister take the picture. But photos can lie. In reality, just a few seconds earlier the first lady was
    herself joking with those around her, Cameron and Schmidt included. Her stern look was captured by chance.

    I took these photos totally spontaneously, without thinking about
    what impact they might have. At the time, I thought the world leaders
    were simply acting like human beings, like me and you. I doubt anyone
    could have remained totally stony faced for the duration of the
    ceremony, while tens of thousands of people were celebrating in the
    stadium. For me, the behaviour of these leaders in snapping a selfie
    seems perfectly natural. I see nothing to complain about, and probably
    would have done the same in their place. The AFP team worked hard to
    display the reaction that South African people had for the passing of
    someone they consider as a father. We moved about 500 pictures, trying to portray their true feelings, and this seemingly trivial image seems to have eclipsed much of this collective work.

    It was interesting to see politicians in a human light because usually when we see them it is in such a controlled environment. Maybe this would not be such an issue if we, as the press, would have more
    access to dignitaries and be able to show they are human as the rest of us.

    I confess too that it makes me a little sad we are so obsessed with
    day-to-day trivialities, instead of things of true importance.

    MORE: http://blogs.afp.com/correspondent/?post/Selfie

    • TresL

      While this explanation seems reasonable, I said it once and I’ll say it again, this is why the WHPC/photographers want more access to the Obama’s to start petty shit like this.

      • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

        Exactly! Remember this pic: http://img.thesun.co.uk/aidemitlum/archive/00859/SNN0425OB_682_859402a.jpg

        The U.S. media swore up and down PBO was checking out the young girls behind. But the video showed that he was helping her up the stairs!

        The author says maybe this wouldn’t have happened if they had more access. Nope. It would be ten times worse!

        • TresL

          And that’s why PBO keeps them at arms length. He knows they have no genuine, substantive interest in the work he’s doing for the country. Some of them are just children looking to entertain themselves and make money all while damaging him, his family and his presidency just for kicks. Others are RWNJs filled with rage and hate and see it as their responsibility to take down the first AA president and to gain an advantage for the GOP.

        • edp4bho

          Ha ha ha. Seems Sarkozy was the amused one. And, if PBO was looking…WTF. He’s a man. I’m grateful that he is careful.

    • Kennymack1971

      That this even had to be explained… *Sigh*

    • qosine

      Ironically, when Prof Carr criticized PBO for leaving right
      after his speech, I knew that the president and FLOTUS were
      still there because the SABC had showed them in the audience
      later. I realize now I saw them right after the “infamous selfie
      moment” and I thought they were just listening to the speaker.
      What do I know? I guess I don’t have that WH Press Corp eye.

  • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

    Damnit man!

    Mandela memorial sign language interpreter ‘was making it up’
    Alexandra Topping theguardian.com,
    Wednesday 11 December 2013 07.01 EST

    The translation of speeches into sign language at Nelson Mandela’s
    memorial service was seen as a sign of inclusiveness, but it appears
    the sign language interpreter was a fake, according to several expert
    organisations.

    Braam Jordaan, a deaf South African and board member of the World
    Deaf Federation, said the interpreter was making up signs as he went
    along. “The structure of his hand, facial expressions and the body
    movements did not follow what the speaker was saying,” Jordaan said.

    The man who signed for a section of the ceremony, including Barack Obama’s speech, was simply making up his own signs, he said.

    …Members of South Africa’s deaf community have previously raised concerns about the interpreter, who has been used at other African National Congress events. Despite this an ANC spokesman said on Wednesday: “I don’t know this guy. He doesn’t work for the ANC. It was a government event.” A spokesman for President Jacob Zuma said he was checking the reports to try to determine the man’s identity.

    MORE: http://www.theguardian.com/society/2013/dec/11/mandela-memorial-sign-language-interpreter-making-it-up-fake

    • TyrenM

      So foul.

    • jds09

      Just watch, that’s some hardcore nepotism and an on-line signing class at work.

    • Miranda

      The number of levels of wrongness here is infinite.

      Dude…NO YOU DIDNT!

    • morphus

      HA! I thought it was me who had forgotten sign language from lack of usage. If true, they may need to investigate more than one interpreter.

    • qosine

      I wondered why the interpreters were so different.
      I know little to zero about signing, but they seemed
      so different.

    • edp4bho

      Excuse my reply—shit !!

  • jziglar

    So according to the Bloomberg poll around 50 % of Americans believe that President Obama doesn’t deserve credit for the improvement in the economy. A majority also believes that he doesn’t deserve credit for the improving housing market and the stock market. I know a lot of polls are full of shit and that only a few if them are legit, but this shows how racist and backwards this country is. People on political wire were going in on this poll. And what makes this worse is the fact that the idiots in this country gave w bush numerous chances after several major fuckups. This is why the rest of the world doesn’t think highly of the American people.

    • rikyrah

      uh huh

    • jds09

      When I crack and look at these polling articles, more often than not, buried deep is a statement similar to…”in comparison to President X at this point in his term, PBO is 2-3 points ahead.” The numbers may be accurate but they’re reported without context in the headlines and initial 3rd of the paragraphs. Historically, IMO, PBO is doing fine at this point in his term.

    • aleth

      This hurts. He gets the blame but not the credit. To be black in America

      • rikyrah

        the Black tax

    • Guns3000

      People for the most part only bitch about polls when the polls don’t affirm their own beliefs. Republicans during the 2013 Presidential election is an obvious example of that. The majority of polls were correct then and they are correct now. The President poll numbers are down first the most part because the administration totally fumbled the ACA federal website rollout. And getting bombarded about on network news everyday for months didn’t help either. As the website improves those poll numbers will improve. The economic poll numbers are merely a reflection the economic environment getting better is not being felt anecdotally by folks that are being polled. Comparing any economic trend numbers from Jan 2009 to present whether it’s GDP, unemployment, federal deficit, consumer confidence, Dow etc. The President is not getting enough credit and the fact that news organizations aren’t reporting this narrative is shameful.

      “I know a lot of polls are full of shit and that only a few if them are legit, but this shows how racist and backwards this country is. ”

      The Potus was elected twice in this country with clear majorities to say all these people are racist and backwards lacks any depth of thought or critical thinking.

      • edp4bho

        Seems no one agrees with you on this Guns, but I would agree to specifics. Thing is, WE are tired of the daily diatribes against PBO and have the understanding, as you seem to, that he is the symbolic whipping boy of —-dare I say it?—racists. This is without a doubt. In stark reality, were it not for them, PBO’s numbers would have been steadily over 50% for the entirety of his presidency thus far. WE know where we live.

        • Guns3000

          When the President’s poll numbers increase positively on the ACA/economy and I believe they will as long both improve are we going to blame racism for that?

          • TyrenM

            So there’s no racism in the media? Are we watching the same news? Say I agree with the part about people liking the polls they like and #’s improving as people enroll – you can’t honestly say that Bloomberg, Gallup, etc. don’t have a racist agenda.

            The crew that walked us into Iraq “Heck of a job Brownie” etc. smiled for 8 years…until THEIR money got messed with.

            Roosevelt pulls country out of Depression – Most overwhelming election ever. PBO stops bleeding…51-47. Keep your head in the sand. I ain’t goin.

          • Guns3000

            Where did I say there was no racism in the media?

          • TyrenM

            My bad. You imply there’s no racism at work in Amerikkka today because PBO won 51-47. Yet for all the reasons you list, the numbers should be in the 60′s. Do you honestly believe that’s all about a website? That the economy wouldn’t be better without obstruction at every turn? Tell me why people vote/poll against their own economic interests? “I don’t want no stinkin ObamaCare, but I’ll take Kynnect (here MNSure)!” “Get government off my back… but don’t fuck with my Medicare.”
            We’s Post-Racial now man?

          • Guns3000

            Did you actually read my posts or do you just want to rant? LOL, again people bash polls no matter the political affiliation when those polls don’t affirm what they want to believe. My point is there is a myriad of reasons why polls go up or down. That’s all. It’s not that complicated.

          • TyrenM

            Haha. I read them all. One thing I don’t do is rant for ranting sake. I gave you the poll bashing part: “Say I agree with the part about people liking the polls they like..,”

            Here’s where I depart: “to say all these people are racist and backwards lacks any depth of thought or critical thinking.” That’s all.

  • rikyrah

    This week’s topic is so interesting…

    • Miranda

      There are many Sundays when I wish I could wear a big fly hat and gloves without people wondering “what’s that about? its not Easter!”

      I love the pictures of my grandmother and great-aunts in their Sunday best, crowns and white gloves.

      • qosine

        I wish these fashions would come back. I’m thinking
        maybe through existing/future TV shows and movies?

  • jziglar

    Funny how President Obama is the one to blame when something bad happens, but he receives no credit when something good happens.

  • rikyrah

    Pope Francis named Time’s 2013 Person of the Year
    Eun Kyung Kim TODAY

    http://www.today.com/news/pope-francis-named-times-2013-person-year-2D11723759

    • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

      Excellent choice!

      I know the emos are maaaaaaaaaad! They just knew Snowden would get it. LOL!

      • qosine

        Ha!

      • rigoletta

        Those emos don’t care about the kind of people the Pope is ministering to.

        The Pope sneaks out the house to help the homeless.

        Snowden sneaks out the house to help himself and Greenwald.

        • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

          THIS.

  • goldenstar

    Love this series and to learn that there are milliners still keeping the craft alive. It’s so interesting that several women had full-tilt careers while making hats, and once retired, they went into the creativity full-time and opened their own businesses. WOW.

  • GreenLadyHere

    -UH! -OH! – -POU FAM♥ — – GUESS -WHAT –DAY IT! –IS!? :>)

    –Woo! Woo!! :>) – –LOL

    — –Annnd 2-day BRANGS some —ACA POSITIVITY — -Woot! Woot!

    – - -☺http://www.politico.com/story/2013/12/november-health-exchange-signups-double-101008.html – - -
    - – - — – -November health exchange signups double!—:>)
    – - – - -***waves @ MR. PRESIDENT** –

    —Annnd I’m LUVIN’ that – -”BLACK annd WHITE HAT! –
    Woot! — -Woot
    — -MORE following.♥ :>)

  • jds09

    Good Morning POU Fam!

    • GreenLadyHere

      Good HUMP DAY MornTin’ jds09. ***BIG HUG*** :>)
      – - -Have a good day. :>)

      • jds09

        Morning GLH!

    • qosine

      Good Morning, jds and POU fam!

  • rikyrah

    Fabulous coat on FLOTUS at this pic:

    http://theobamadiary.com/2013/12/11/early-bird-chat-70/

    • qosine

      Wow! I love her coat!! Thx rikyrah.

    • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

      YAAS! And those leather gloves are chic! *puts long leather gloves on Christmas list*

    • pamelabrown53

      How do you spell “fashion Icon”? F-L-O-T-U-S!

  • GreenLadyHere

    GOOD “HUMP DAY” — MORNTIN’ –Miranda♥/POU FAM♥ – - -THESE HATS R BEYOND GORGEOUS! :>) THEY make –SUNDAY MORNTIN’ — Worth Waitin’ 4. :>) – -

    – — –[Auntie RE's hat was NOT designed by this milliner --- -BUT - - -SHE STR8 B wearin' IT. :>)]

    — – -☻Ms. ELEY: – -@ the PREAKNESS RACE – - -

    – — –This is an exciting time for Eley because, she says, customers going to the Preakness race are willing to be more daring, and it gives her the chance to be really creative. She says women feel special in their Preakness hats, and “they could feel just as special for other occasionsif they would just consider wearing a hat.

    – - – - – - -☺http://media2.abc2news.com//photo/2013/05/16/Its_all_about_the_hats_585510000_20130516175545_320_240.JPG

    — —WooT! WooT :>)

    – - – -☻ENJOY your TREAT – –B BLESSED♥ – -

    • TyrenM

      See. Now instead of trying to pick the winner, you’ll have me checking hats to scope a sista’s werk. Now Black Eyed Susan Day (ladies day) won’t be the same.

      • GreenLadyHere

        GOOD -HUMP DAY – — MORNTIN’ — TyrenM :>) ***BIG HUG*** :>) — -
        – - —Lookin’ FORWARD – -HUH? :>) – - -
        Good 2 C U 2-day. :>) Have a good one. :>)

      • pamelabrown53

        Awww, go ahead and pick one Tyrene. This is a tough one for me because I admire the artistry and history but find hats uncomfortable, sometimes limiting head movement, and then there’s the inevitable concomitant: “hat hair”.

        • TyrenM

          Yeah ok. I usually win more on Preakness Day then Derby or Belmont. This…is a distraction lol.

  • GreenLadyHere

    Miranda♥ — – Kept wonderin’ WHAT was -GOIN’ ON – — -in “AIR force 1″: –:>)

    – - -Behind-the-scenes photos reveal George W. Bush
    proudly showing off his artwork and dining with the Obamas on Air Force One during journey to South Africa
    - -

    — – -A series of intimate behind-the-scenes photos aboard Air Force One have revealed the moment George W. Bush proudly showed off his artwork to Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama – and they look impressed.
    Other images reveal him sharing a joke with the president and casually chatting ahead of dinner as they flew to South Africa for Nelson Mandela’s memorial service.

    The luxury aircraft hosted a political reunion on Monday, as the two
    Presidents and three first ladies – Laura Bush, Michelle Obama and
    Hillary Clinton – were on board.

    The Obamas retired to the President’s office and regular cabin at the front of the plane while former Secretary of State Clinton was given free reign of the senior staff’s cabin. Bush and his wife Laura were given the medical suite.
    THERE IS MORE — –

    — -”AIR”body – - -PUT in their – -PROPER PLACE. :>)

    • qosine

      LOL, GreenLady!
      “AIR”body – - -PUT in their – -PROPER PLACE. :>)

      I’m trying to Like you a 1, but comes up negative:(

      • GreenLadyHere

        LOL Le Qosine♥ ***BIG HUG*** :>)
        ***ON the run** – –Back atchu –as soon as, , . —
        B BLESSED. :>)

  • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

    Nerdy Wonka @NerdyWonka 29m
    POTUS & FLOTUS have dinner with the Bushes & more great behind-the-scenes pics from @PeteSouza http://www.whitehouse.gov/photos-and-video/photogallery/president-obama-attends-nelson-mandela-memorial-service … pic.twitter.com/NECjLdQWIt

    • goldenstar

      Interesting photos and what a great group of folks. No lack of conversation with any of these participants!!! ALL of them are craning their necks to take a look @ Bush’s paintings. Ha, ha.

      • Town

        Bush is actually not a bad amateur painter.

        • goldenstar

          Interesting. Eric Holder actually stood up to take a better look at those photos.

        • TyrenM

          That’s what it’s like to have not 1 care in the world lol.

          • Town

            I think Baby Bush realizes he was used as a puppet & discarded.

          • pamelabrown53

            Nah, that would imply a modicum of self awareness.

        • pamelabrown53

          While “amateur” is the operative word, Town< I appreciate your ability to separate the man and his disastrous presidency from your sense of fairness and recognition of a very surprising Bush hobby

  • Miranda

    The Gun Lobby’s Stealth Assault on Small Town America

    Since Newtown, a pro-gun group has bullied local governments into repealing firearms ordinances.
    By Hannah Levintova| Wed Dec. 11, 2013 3:00 AM GMT

    This past spring, strangely similar pieces of mail started arriving at the offices of city attorneys in 28 Maryland communities. The tersely worded letters, many dated March 26, warned each town that some of its firearms laws were illegal and needed to be repealed immediately. Takoma Park’s letter claimed that ordinances against carrying unlocked guns and possessing or selling guns in public places “grossly” exceeded state law and should be taken off the books, “out of respect for the rule of law.” All of the letters warned that failure to comply would put the towns “at risk for a lawsuit.”

    “Once in a blue moon we get these kinds of letters from activist organizations,” says Ryan Spiegel, vice president of the Montgomery County chapter of the Maryland Municipal League and a member of the Gaithersburg city council. What felt different this time, he says, was the coordination—and the timing: Just a month earlier, the Maryland Senate had passed some of the country’s toughest gun control measures in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre.

    The letters came from the Second Amendment Foundation, a prominent pro-gun legal-defense organization, as part of a quiet but mounting campaign to strike down local gun laws across the country. So far, SAF has sent out about 425 letters to cities, towns, and counties in Maryland, Oregon, Virginia, and Washington and has announced plans to target hundreds more local laws.

    more here: http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2013/12/gun-laws-second-amendment-foundation

    • qosine

      Oh, that happened around here about 2 years ago. Suddenly
      there was a move to allow conceal carry in parks, school zones, bars, restaurants that sell liquor. I was freaking out!! Norms have developed over years and this was just crazy. Fortunately, some groups that hold big events — and bring money to our
      community — started pushing back. Plus business owners
      really objected to guns in cars, but that law went through.

      • Miranda

        SMH…just insane. These gun nuts want vigilante justice as the norm instead of a civil society.

      • Scopedog

        While I have used guns at targeting ranges, and while I was taught how to shoot–and more importantly, proper gun safety–by a licensed firearms instructor….

        …I do not own a gun. And at this point in my life, I do not want to. And I also feel that not everyone is capable of or qualified to own a firearm. They demand great mental strength and responsibility, and that is something I do not see coming from the NRA.

        It’s sad that most of my friends and family who are members of the NRA are more sane and responsible than Wayne LaPierre. I may disagree with them on the right to own guns, but I do not disagree with their right–they’ve earned it.

  • GreenLadyHere

    Miranda♥ – — IN HONOR of Dear MADIBA♥ – - -

    – - – -Nelson Mandela lies in state in Pretoria; throngs expected to pay respects – -

    – - – - -The rich, the powerful.
    The famous and the family. All of them bidding goodbye to anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela on Wednesday, the first of three days his body will lie in state at the seat of South Africa’s government.

    First was South African President Jacob Zuma, then came Mandela’s widow Graça Machel and former wife Winnie Mandela, both wearing black turbans.

    In near silence, dozens of family members passed by as military honor guards dressed in white flanked the coffin on each end.

    South Africa says farewell to Nelson Mandela

    South Africans come together to reflect

    Obama pays homage to Mandela

    Actor and producer talk Mandela biopic

    There were others too.
    Former South African leaders Thabo Mbeki and F.W. de Klerk, the
    country’s last apartheid-era president and Nobel Peace Prize winner.
    U2′s Bono also paused for a moment before moving on. So did Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe.

    THERE IS MUCH MORE – — RIHEP. – -

    – — ☺http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c_AmiBBn4SM
    -[Gotta "bounce" C YA as soon as♥ - -. . .]

  • Miranda

    Chuck tried to come for Eric Boehlert…got slapped.

    Eric Boehlert ‏@EricBoehlert1h
    FIXED: yep. Obama’s approv rating ticks up in new WSJ/NBC poll….so both WSJ and NBC portray poll as very bad news for Obama; #libmedia

    Chuck Todd ‏@chucktodd1h
    @EricBoehlert if you want to criticize us for cherry picking, you need to not actual cherry pick yourself and ignore the disapproval figure

    Eric Boehlert ‏@EricBoehlert1h
    @chucktodd so after decades of basing polls on POTUS approv rating, we’re now shifting to ‘disapproval’ for this Obama poll? gotcha.

    • qosine

      Go Eric. lol

    • MsKitty

      Chuckles personifies that saying, “punks jump up to get beat down.”

    • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

      Eric was like, “Don’t come for me unless I send for you”.

      • pamelabrown53

        LOL, Sepia…great comment.

    • rikyrah

      Eric is on Team NFTG!

    • Aquagranny911

      There was another tweet to Chuckie that went like this:

      “The media does so much cherry picking that we need to check their immigration status.”

      I loved that one!

  • Miranda

    CFPB Orders GE CareCredit to Refund $34.1 Million for Deceptive Health-Care Credit Card Enrollment

    More than 1 Million Consumers Were Potential Victims of Misleading Practices

    WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is ordering GE Capital Retail Bank and its subsidiary, CareCredit, to refund up to $34.1 million to potentially more than 1 million consumers who were victims of deceptive credit card enrollment tactics. At doctors’ and dentists’ offices around the country, consumers were signed up for CareCredit credit cards they thought were interest free, but were actually accruing interest that kicked in if the full balance was not paid at the end of a promotional period.

    “Medical debt is already a big problem for many Americans. Poor credit card transparency should not be making the problem even worse,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “Deferred-interest products can be risky for consumers in the best of circumstances, and today’s action ensures that CareCredit will no longer profit from consumer confusion. The Bureau will not tolerate financial companies that take advantage of patients and their loved ones.”

    more here: http://www.consumerfinance.gov/newsroom/cfpb-orders-ge-carecredit-to-refund-34-1-million-for-deceptive-health-care-credit-card-enrollment/?utm_source=social&utm_medium=tw&utm_campaign=carecredit%20enforcement

    • TyrenM

      Call the law! PBO has hit his “buddies” Jamie Dimon and Jeff Immelt in the same calendar year. Granted it’s chump change to them but it’s a hit nonetheless.

    • rikyrah

      this is why they never wanted the CFPB and definitely didn’t want Warren or Cordray to head it

  • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

    They’re STILL pushing this offensive bs……

    John Harwood @JohnJHarwood 1h
    Yes MT @chucktodd: Folks. Political analysts not comparing Katrina to health care – comparing political fallout from each. Just clarifying

    • jds09

      The logic STILL doesn’t hold up with this explanation. Americans (specifically Black Americans) are as equally concerned (aka political fall out) with a website’s roll out as they were concerned with dead bodies floating in flooded neighborhoods is crazy.

      • Miranda

        Oh see you don’t understand…white folks inconvenienced by a glitchy website is the equivalent tragedy of black folks losing their children/parents/family to flood waters along with their entire histories, possessions, livelihoods.

        Its the same thing, don’t you see?

    • rigoletta

      The political fallout? This is the media playing word games.

      First off how has Obama been hurt by what’s happened with healthcare. Those who opposed the law never liked him anyway so who cares?

      Second, the political fallout for Bush from Katrina can’t be separated from those who died and those who suffered because of his admin’s incompetence.

      Bush’s idiocy got folks killed.

      Obama’s trying to save lives in the face of the kinds of political obstruction no president has had to face.

      The fact that they are trying to link these two politically IS comparing Katrina to Obamacare.

    • gn

      Half of what they do is floating around sensationalist bs; the other half is trying to clean up and justify said sensationalist bs. Stupid m-f-ers; nothing about ObamaCares even approaches the devastation which Katrina (and the inept govt response to it) wrought. Only4RM is on point as usual.

  • aleth

    What an ungrateful nation! So Obama is not responsible for saving the economy, car industry, ending war etc. wow the people sure is dumb. I wanna see the breakdown by race. I bet you we know who it is. A black man saved the country and thought is too repulsive for them.

  • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

    Yeah, we all know why Dylan wanted Time to pick Snowden. Then he and his GOPolitico buddies would have been able to write article upon article about how Snowden being “Person of the Year” is a slap in the face to PBO, makes PBO look ineffective…etc.

    Dylan Byers @DylanByers 3m
    Snowden would’ve been a smarter move for Time

    • Miranda

      That’s exactly it. LOL, who are they kidding? If Snowden had been named that is ALL the media would have focused on for the rest of the week…there would have been panel after panel discussing how this is such an embarrassment for PBO – so now TIME is cowardly because the person of the year is the liberal Pope – now he isn’t that influential..is he?? LOL, the media really can’t hide their motivations at all.

  • Miranda

    LOL…he mad…..LOL

    Greenwald Attacks Time For Person Of The Year Selection: ‘A Meaningless Award From A Meaningless Magazine’
    TOM KLUDT – DECEMBER 11, 2013, 10:13 AM EST2319

    Glenn Greenwald ridiculed Time on Wednesday for the magazine’s decision to name Pope Francis — and not Edward Snowden — its “person of the year” for 2013.

    In an email to TPM, Greenwald, who has reported extensively on the National Security Agency’s top secret surveillance programs revealed by Snowden, said that the selection was motivated by Time’s desire to be “relevant” — if only for a moment.

    “It’s a meaningless award from a meaningless magazine, designed to achieve the impossible: to make TIME relevant and interesting for a few fleeting moments,” he wrote.

    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/greenwald-mocks-time-for-person-of-the-year-selection/

    • rikyrah

      he’s such a whiny bitchass

      • pamelabrown53

        Gee, rickyrah, “whiny bitchass” is way too kind.

    • rigoletta

      Angry like a child. If you don’t care about something or if you think it’s insignificant you don’t get angry about it Glenn.

      Not fooling anybody.

      If they’d picked Snowden he’d be saying how important his selection was.

    • MsKitty

      This not only sums up Gigi’s reaction today, but how he rolls in general…

      • gn

        I’m mad yall wiretapped gg at home…

    • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia
  • Miranda

    WHY WASN’T HE CHARGED?!?!

    No charges after man pulls gun on ‘b*tch’ with disabled kid over Walmart parking delay
    By David Edwards
    Wednesday, December 11, 2013 10:32 EST

    Police in Colorado say that an Aurora man will not be charged after he admitted pulling his gun on a woman with four children — including a disabled child — because she was taking too long to park her car.

    Shakia Bush told KMGH-TV that she was waiting for a handicap parking space at a local Walmart recently and a man behind her started honking his horn.

    When she got out to tell him to go around because she was waiting for the handicap space, she said that he started yelling obscenities and pulled out a gun.

    “He showed it to me in the air, then held it to his chest and said, ‘B****, I have a gun. I will shoot your a**,’” she recalled. “My 10-year old son was saying ‘Mommy, he’s going to shoot you. I don’t want him to shoot you.’”

    Bush said that she screamed that the man was “pulling a gun on a woman” before writing down his license plate number and calling 911.

    “That’s when he got back into his car and took off,” she said.

    more here: http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/12/11/no-charges-after-man-pulls-gun-on-btch-with-disabled-kid-over-walmart-parking-delay/

    • rikyrah

      W-T-F?

    • Aquagranny911

      The fact that this happened in Aurora, scene of that horrendous movie theater shooting makes me loco.

    • Worldwatcher7

      So this timebomb is just roaming around that community ticking away? Scary.

  • gn

    Loving this series! These pictures of Ms. Phyllis’ hats are the business.

  • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

    Sen. Lamar Alexander’s Chief of Staff Put on Leave Following Allegations Involving Child Pornography
    By Matt Berman and Brian Resnick
    December 11, 2013

    Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., sent out a release Wednesday morning announcing that his chief of staff, Ryan Loskarn, is being put on leave over allegations involving child pornography. “I am stunned, surprised and disappointed by what I have learned,” the senator said in a statement.

    Loskarn is on leave without pay, and Alexander says his office is fully cooperating with the investigation.

    It wasn’t long ago that things were looking rather good for Loskarn. A
    former staff director of the Senate Republican Conference, he was on Roll Call’s 2009 “Fabulous 50 Movers and Shakers” on Capitol Hill list. He became Alexander’s chief of staff at the end of 2011. Before then, he was the staff director of the Senate Republican Conference for more than two years and worked in the House as an aide for seven years for various Republican lawmakers.

    http://www.nationaljournal.com/congress/sen-lamar-alexander-s-chief-of-staff-put-on-leave-following-allegations-involving-child-pornography-20131211

    • TyrenM

      May they all feel the stench.

    • Aquagranny911

      Let’s see the press crawl all over this one? Probably will not hear a word.

  • gn

    OMG, the First Lady’s coat!

    @TheObamaDiary
    President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama return to the WH after their visit to South Africa

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BbNCWK7CIAAsT54.jpg:large

    • edp4bho

      The whole outfit is awesome, gn. And PBO ain’t doing bad himself.

      • gn

        They both look terrific. That coat is the absolute business.

    • Worldwatcher7

      2nd Attempt.

      Good Morning POU:

      I thought I could get away with lurking while working today, but I gots to comment on this picture. Pete Souza is a G. This is one of the most striking and iconic photos I’ve seen during this presidency. They could be models on a photo shoot, but they’re our own REAL gorgeous and intelligent President and First Lady.

      • gn

        Well said!

    • MsKitty

      I want that bag

  • jziglar

    I don’t appreciate someone being rude and questioning my intelligence. I agree with many of the points Guns made but not all of the polls were right in 2012 and despite President Obama winning by a good margin 60 % of white voters voted for a POS named Mitt Romney. I’m not saying that all of the polling results are based on race but the fact is that plenty of people gave a fuckup like Bush multiple chances yet here we are with a black president and 50-60 % of the people believes he deserves little credit for good news. But we can guarantee that if the positive economic numbers reversed they would be blaming the president.

    • crazycanuck

      I don’t believe in polls, they are ALWAYS skewed.

    • Aquagranny911

      Trying again..I agree with CC. I consider all polls BS.

    • rikyrah

      I never ever let folks forget that the American Social Safety Net was saved by the NOn-White people of this country. If it had been up to White people, they would have turned this country over to two sociopaths who vowed to shred it.

      • Scopedog

        Granted, if you told them that, you would probably hear two sounds–one from some heads exploding in disbelief and a loud grinding sound as the gears in other heads come to a screeching halt because they cannot figure out how such a thing was possible.

        And I guarantee you that while it will happen on the Far Right….it will happen to some on the Far Left.

    • Guns3000

      I apologize I was trying to insult you. My only point was I don’t think the Potus and his team sit around and blame racism when trying to reverse bad poll numbers.

  • crazycanuck

    Van Gogh: The Life ‏@VanGoghTheLife1h
    #VanGogh of the Day: Woman with a Scarlet Bow, December 1885. Oil on canvas, 60 x 50 cm. Private Collection. pic.twitter.com/EFSpFqwmUZ

    • goldenstar

      She looks so contemporary!

      • crazycanuck

        I love the brush strokes, but you are right it is a very contemporary look. I love fashion and always checked out fashion from times gone. What struck me in this painting when i first saw it years ago was the hair length. It was unusual for women to wear their hair long in the 1800′s I think. That gives it the contemporary look imo.

        • Aquagranny911

          She has a really strong face. She looks Latina to me like someone who could have been painted by Diego Rivera or Frida Kahlo.

          Women did wear their hair long then but usually not down & flowing like that unless they were young girls.

  • gn

    I can understand cracking a couple of jokes just having a little fun, but anyone who took the “FLO checks PBO at the Mandela memorial” story seriously needs a time-out. I mean come on.

    @NewsBreaker
    Here’s one pic we didn’t see yesterday via @joelcifer

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BbOJXsMCYAAIHOs.jpg:large

    • Miranda

      Rightwinger: THAT’S CLEARLY A PHOTOSHOP!!!! That’s not her arm! See! Why does the blonde only have ONE HAND! Where’s the other HAND?!?!? That’s the blonde woman’s arm that Obummer is slobbering and they darkened it!

      • gn

        Okay! The First Lady has very high and pronounced cheekbones—that striking look is misinterpreted by many as a “mean face” or upset when in reality her expression is neutral. I can’t believe that this was made into an actual story; how stupid is that!

        Many thanks to PBO and FLO for (as is so expected that people now take it for granted) carrying themselves with the utmost of class and dignity, bringing the best of the US to an international event. And the President’s speech was *wonderful.* That’s what should have led the news everywhere (it did lead the news locally for me though to be fair).

        • Worldwatcher7

          I appreciated your commentary yesterday. I hate that this was used in an attempt to overshadow the President’s magnificent speech. But, then again, we know the press and other detractors will always latch on to something, no matter how trivial.

    • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

      I bet PBO and FLOTUS were on AF1 laughing their arses off at the tweets about these pics.

    • rikyrah

      AWE

      • crazycanuck

        she’s blushing lol.

    • goldenstar

      Like how Susan Rice’s face shows up right next to FLOTUS.

  • Aquagranny911

    Disqus is so screwed today. Comments keep disappearing. I just tried to “like” one of GN’s & now I can’t see it anymore. Anybody else having a problem. I’ve already changed browsers.

    • crazycanuck

      no problem yet AG, crosses fingers.

    • gn

      I don’t have a problem seeing comments but you definitely get a like for trying to like one of my posts lol…great taste!

      • goldenstar

        LOL.

      • Aquagranny911

        LOL!

  • GreenLadyHere

    Miranda♥ — -BWAHAHA! — -GLOATIN’ -[@RE-THUCKERS] -Time- — –LOL

    - – -Steve Stockman’s Campaign Headquarters Condemned- -

    —–AAAHH-HAHAHAHAHAHA! Off to a great start there, Steve.

    Rep. Steve Stockman, the loud-mouthed Texan who on Monday announced a Republican primary challenge to Sen. John Cornyn, is known for barebones campaigning. Which is a good thing, considering the Tea Party insurgent may not currently even have a campaign office.

    Officials in Webster, Texas last month ordered the emergency closure of Stockman’s campaign headquarters, The Houston Chronicle reported at the time. Officials cited multiple safety violations, and the newspaper reported that campaign staffers and volunteers were working and sleeping in a commercial building that was considered unsafe for habitation.
    THERE IS MORE— – -LOL

    • TyrenM

      Deleted.

  • Miranda

    Rubio enrolls family in Obamacare exchange
    Monday, December 9, 2013 7:20pm

    One of Obamacare’s biggest critics is now officially covered under the federal health care exchange: Sen.Marco Rubio.

    “Senator Rubio spent time looking at all the options and decided to enroll through the D.C. exchange for coverage for him and his family,” spokeswoman Brooke Sammon told the Buzz.

    Rubio took the federal subsidy afforded to lawmakers and staff — a perk worth up to 75 percent of monthly premium costs — that some Republicans wanted to kill off. Some lawmakers who have enrolled in the exchange (The Washington Post is keeping a list) have rejected the taxpayer-funded employer contribution, which is far more generous than most workers get.

    more here: http://www.tampabay.com/blogs/the-buzz-florida-politics/rubio-enrolls-family-in-obamacare-exchange/2156339

    • TyrenM

      THAT…might get him primaried.

      • goldenstar

        From your mouth to God’s ears.

  • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

    Hmmm….

    Former MSNBC Cameraman Suing NBC for ‘Age Discrimination’
    by Andrew Kirell | 1:04 pm, December 11th, 2013

    A former cameraman for MSNBC’s Daily Rundown with Chuck Todd is suing his former employer, alleging he was recently fired under age discrimination.

    In a federal lawsuit, 60-year-old George Hyatt claims he was fired by an NBC News Washington bureau supervisor who he overheard talking about the need to get “young blood” into the station. The camera operator had reportedly been with the network since the beginning of Todd’s tenure at NBC.

    In an interview with The Daily Caller, Hyatt described his former employer as “a sack full of lying weasels,” and added that he hopes Todd will speak out on his behalf. In an interview with theDC, however, the MSNBC host denied any knowledge of the lawsuit and remarked that Hyatt, as a cameraman, did not fall under his supervision.

    MORE: http://www.mediaite.com/tv/former-msnbc-cameraman-suing-nbc-for-age-discrimination/

    • goldenstar

      Sounding like Todd has no spine, guts, nor moral compass.

    • Worldwatcher7

      Poor George didn’t realize that Chuckie is vying for the position of top weasel.

    • MsKitty

      Hyatt described his former employer as “a sack full of lying weasels,” and added that he hopes Todd will speak out on his behalf.

      I hope you’re not holding your breath, sir.

    • TyrenM

      Good luck with that but crying to the Daily Caller will not help your cause any.

  • rikyrah

  • GreenLadyHere

    Miranda♥ —I ‘ON’T care how many annnd WHAT KINDS of PICs R taken of THEM: – - -THEY R IN LOVE!!♥ -♥ –

    — – -☺http://www.slate.com/content/dam/slate/blogs/behold/2012/11/16/121116_BUR120815Obama_Iowa0845TheHug.jpg.CROP.original-original.jpg

    – — ☺http://cdn.madamenoire.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/obama-hug-twitter.png

    — READ THESE annnd KNOW!! :>)

  • rikyrah

    Joy Reid ✔ @TheReidReport Follow

    See, how it works is Republican presidents get to sell arms to dictatorial govts and support apartheid-practicing ones. Dems? No handshakes!

    9:37 PM – 10 Dec 2013

  • Aquagranny911

    WooHoo POU! I just checked our outdoor thermometer & the temp is 63 degrees. We are getting back up to normal & the gardens made it through our cold snap. All is wonderful in my small slice of the world!

  • Miranda

    Afternoon thread is up!

    • GreenLadyHere

      Miranda♥ —ON MY WAY –>☺http://madsenworld.dk/anigif/human/mage.gif LOL

  • Aquagranny911

    Here’s a heads up for anyone who has not yet gone to place a vote in support of ISONPRIZE group “PARENTS UNITED FOR PUBLIC EDUCATION”

    This is the link:

    http://www.philebrity.com/awards/

    It looks like they are leaders right now.