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Obama Adds Florida, Turns Focus To Fiscal Cliff

THE MIAMI HERALD, WASHINGTON POST, REUTERS (U.S.)

Worldcrunch

WASHINGTON - Fresh from his election victory and emotional Thank You's (see below), Barack Obama will turn back to the gritty business of trying to turn the U.S. economy around.

The first order of business will be a Friday appearance to address the so-called "fiscal cliff," a set of looming deadlines, which if not resolved could send the economy spiralling back into recession. The Washington Post reports that Obama will try to set the tone for upcoming negotiations with Congressional Republicans.

The President will come in with a bit more fire power, as it looks clear now that he also won the state of Florida in Tuesday's ballotting. The head of Florida's Democrat Party has issued a statement congratulating Obama, in what now seems likely to be a victory in the only state yet to declare an official result.

As of Thursday evening, Obama leads the Republican candidate by a margin of just 58,055 votes in the Sunshine State, or 49.92% to 49.22%. However, the votes yet to be counted are in heavily Democrat areas.

Mitt Romney's aides in Florida have also basically conceded defeat: “The numbers in Florida show this was winnable,” Brett Doster, Florida advisor for Romney, said in a statement to the Miami Herald.

“We thought based on our polling and range of organization that we had done what we needed to win. Obviously, we didn’t, and for that I and every other operative in Florida has a sick feeling that we left something on the table. I can assure you this won’t happen again," he said.

Of course Florida's 29 electoral college votes would not have changed the victor in the race for the White House, as Obama had already garnered 303 electoral votes to Romney's 206.

Still, Obama will have little

However, the painfully slow outcome in the state has brought back memories of 2000 when Republican candidate George W. Bush won Florida by only 537 votes and later won the White House after a bitter recount dispute with Democrat Al Gore that reached the U.S. Supreme Court.

Election day in Miami - @OFA_FL via Twitter

Obama's campaign team cited Florida's 1.4 million Latino community as the success of the Democrat Party. Obama won a record 61% of Hispanic votes in Florida, compared to 57% in 2008, according to Reuters.

Obama also made surprising gains in the usually Republican voting Cuban-American electorate, winning 48%.

A Florida win means victories for the President in all the key swing states except North Carolina.

Okay, three days and we still don't know who won Florida. I say, next time, they don't get to vote. They've had their chance.

— Christopher Moore (@TheAuthorGuy) November 9, 2012

Obama's campaign team posted a video Thursday night of the President thanking his team at the campaign headquarters in Chicago.

Addressing the largely young team, Obama was visibly emotional after the bitterly fought campaign slog. “What you guys accomplished will go on in annals of history…but the most important thing you need to know is your journey’s just beginning. You’re just starting," he said.

“That’s been my source of hope. It’s been why the last four years when people ask me how do you put up with this or that, the frustrations of Washington, I think of what you guys are doing. That’s the source of my hope, my strength and my inspiration.”

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Ideas

Joshimath, The Sinking Indian City Has Also Become A Hotbed Of Government Censorship

The Indian authorities' decision to hide factual reports on the land subsidence in Joshimath only furthers a sense of paranoia.

Photo of people standing next to a cracked road in Joshimath, India

Cracked road in Joshimath

@IndianCongressO via Twitter
Rohan Banerjee*

MUMBAI — Midway through the movie Don’t Look Up (2021), the outspoken PhD candidate Kate Dibiasky (Jennifer Lawrence) is bundled into a car, a bag over her head. The White House, we are told, wants her “off the grid”. She is taken to a warehouse – the sort of place where CIA and FBI agents seem to spend an inordinate amount of time in Hollywood movies – and charged with violating national security secrets.

The Hobson’s choice offered to her is to either face prosecution or suspend “all public media appearances and incendiary language relating to Comet Dibiasky”, an interstellar object on a collision course with earth. Exasperated, she acquiesces to the gag order.

Don’t Look Upis a satirical take on the collective apathy towards climate change; only, the slow burn of fossil fuel is replaced by the more imminent threat of a comet crashing into our planet. As a couple of scientists try to warn humanity about its potential extinction, they discover a media, an administration, and indeed, a society that is not just unwilling to face the truth but would even deny it.

This premise and the caricatured characters border on the farcical, with plot devices designed to produce absurd scenarios that would be inconceivable in the real world we inhabit. After all, would any government dealing with a natural disaster, issue an edict prohibiting researchers and scientists from talking about the event? Surely not. Right?

On January 11, the National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC), one of the centers of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), issued a preliminary report on the land subsidence issue occurring in Joshimath, the mountainside city in the Himalayas.

The word ‘subsidence’ entered the public lexicon at the turn of the year as disturbing images of cracked roads and tilted buildings began to emanate from Joshimath.

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