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Artist Will Barnet dies at 101…

Will Barnet, a titan of the visual art world, died at his home in New York on Tuesday. He was 101.

His family said the cause of death was old age. “He died peacefully in his home,” said Phil Alexandre of New York’s Alexandre Gallery, which represented Barnet.

Barnet, an art educator and a lifelong champion of the arts, inspired generations of artists and lived long enough to enjoy many honors that most artists receive only posthumously. In 2011, President Obama awarded him the National Medal of Arts, the highest honor for an individual artist in the United States.

This year, France recognized him with the insignia of Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters.

Barnet and his wife, Elena, lived in a duplex at the National Arts Club on Gramercy Park in Manhattan. They were without power for a few days because of Superstorm Sandy, and had to move to a warmer apartment.

“Woman Reading” by Will Barnet

Barnet got “a touch of pneumonia” during the power outage, Alexandre said, but had been feeling better in recent days.

His daughter, Ona, said her father visited many art galleries on Saturday, “doing what he loved the most.”

Hard of hearing and unable to walk, Barnet never allowed his physical ailments to limit his love of art, said a longtime friend, Ira Goldberg, executive director of the Arts Students League of New York, where Barnet studied and taught.

He was as committed to his work at 101 as he was when he was a young man making his way in New York, Goldberg said.

Barnett was probably best known for paintings and prints of women with their cats.

[thanks to the Portland (Maine) Press Herald]

 

It’s hard to believe that Paul LePage is Governor of a State in America…

The other day, Gov. Paul LePage (R) of Maine said that the Internal Revenue Service was not far from the Gestapo, the Nazi secret police. Really said it. In public.

Perhaps he’s got a distorted sense of humor…how could anyone think he really believes what he said?

Then he attempted to clarify his comment, but added to the controversy instead. His quote:

“What I am trying to say is the Holocaust was a horrific crime against humanity and, frankly, I would never want to see that repeated. Maybe the IRS is not quite as bad — yet.”

A reporter asked LePage if the IRS was headed in that direction, and he said it was.

When asked if he thought the IRS was going to kill a lot of people like the Nazis, LePage said:

Yeah.”

When do gubernatorial elections come up again in Maine? This guy has really got to go. In one small set of statements he has offended Americans, Maine voters and Jews everywhere…and he doesn’t even know it.

We hear so much about Google invading our lives…

Here’s one you weren’t expecting:

A view from much further away.

(Reuters) – A Frenchman took Google to court on Thursday over a photo published online by its Street View application showing him urinating in his front yard which he believes has made him the laughing stock of his village in rural northwest France.

The man, who is aged around 50 and lives in a village of some 3,000 people in the Maine-et-Loire region, is demanding the removal of the photo, in which locals have recognised him despite his face being blurred out.

He also wants 10,000 euros in damages.

“Everyone has the right to a degree of secrecy,” his lawyer, Jean-Noel Bouillard, told Reuters. “In this particular case, it’s more amusing than serious. But if he’d been caught kissing a woman other than his wife, he would have had the same issue.”

The Judge is ruling on March 15th. This will be one to wait for.

Meanwhile, watch what you do in your own yard.

“Photo Bombers” bring labor mural back to Maine’s Capitol Building for 2 hours…

A group called BrokeFix in protest of the removal of the Labor Mural from the Maine Capitol in Augusta by the Right Wing Governor did what was called a “Photo Bomb” demonstration to bring the mural back.

Powered by a car battery, they projected the mural on the outside of the Capitol Building for two hours.

Take a look:

The USDoL had put up more than $36,000 to help commission the mural. If it is not put back in actuality, the citizens of Maine will likely have to return the grant money.

Making Labor Disappear… From Crooks and Liars:

clipped from crooksandliars.com
 

Maine’s New Teabag Gov Wants to Wipe Out History of the Labor Movement.

 

An official photograph from the Paul LePage fo...

Governor Le Page

Democrats are the ones who are always taunted by the Republicans for being “politically correct,” but when was the last time you heard of a Democrat doing something so stupid, silly and just plain mean as this? Teabag Gov. LePage is so incredibly tone deaf to the mainstream, I’ll be surprised if he makes it through an entire term without a recall movement:

 

Once again, Republicans are trying to erase the history of America’s working people. In Maine, Republican Gov. Paul LePage has ordered the removal of a 36-foot mural depicting the state’s labor history from the Department of Labor. The11-panel piece in part depicts a 1986 paper mill strike and “Rosie the Riveter” at Bath Iron Works. Judy Taylor, an artist based on Mount Desert, won a 2007 competition to create the mural to depict the “History of Labor in the State of Maine.”

Further, the names of conference rooms are being changed to make them more “business friendly.” One is called the “Perkins Room,” for Frances Perkins, the first female Secretary of Labor and promoter of New Deal policies that improved workers’ rights on the job. Perkins championed labor reforms after the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist fire that resulted in the deaths of 146 garment workers in New York City. This Friday is the 100th anniversary of that tragedy.
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What is it about these TeaBag Governors? Have they forgotten all the advances that Labor brought to this country? Eight hour days? Weekends off? Summer vacations? Regular advancements and fair negotiations? This Le Page is as bad as Scott Walker and just as deserving of removal.

From The Hill: Collins says ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ repeal must wait for tax cuts By Michael O’Brien

Susan Collins (R-ME), member of the United Sta...

Susan Collins (R - Maine)

Here’s a piece of O’Brien’s article.

The next time someone tells you that Susan Collins is a “liberal” Republican, have them read this…

There’s more at TheHill.com:

clipped from thehill.com
Democrats hoping to move forward with legislation other than tax cuts shouldn’t look to centrist Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) to break the logjam.

Collins said again on Friday that, while she would vote with Democrats to end the military’s “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, she wouldn’t do so until a debate over tax cuts has been resolved.
“Once the tax issue is resolved, I have made it clear that if the Majority Leader brings the Defense Authorization bill to the floor with sufficient time allowed for debate and amendments, I would vote to proceed to the bill,” she said in a statement.

The statement is a sign that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell‘s (Ky.) Republican conference hasn’t fractured in its insistence that the expiring tax cuts be dealt with prior to action on any other legislative business.

 

All 42 Senate Republicans wrote Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) to inform him that the GOP wouldn’t allow any other issues to move before tax cuts during the lame-duck session.
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Is Olympia Snowe thinking about her future?

This piece in Taegan Goddard’s Political Wire caught my attention:
clipped from politicalwire.com

Snowe’s Constituents Back Obama Plan

A new Democracy Corps poll in Maine finds that Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME) “enjoys broad support in her home state, but she faces significant political problems if she opposes President Obama’s health insurance reform.”
Specifically, a Snowe vote against a reform bill “results in Mainers evenly divided on whether she should be re-elected, while support for Obama’s plan produces 53% who want to re-elect Snowe compared to 38% who want someone new as U.S. Senator.”

In addition, Mainers “overwhelmingly support a government sponsored non-profit health insurance option, 63% to 27%.
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