This morning we began yet another new year of shows in which we examine what’s happening and try to figure it all out.

Today, I was joined by Howie Klein of Down With Tyranny and the Blue America PAC.  We talked about his trip to the Yucutan and his visits with the Mayan people who told him that it’s only the calendar that ends in December, not the world!

We also discussed the DCCC, the NDAA  (and my questions to Debbie Wasserman Schultz about it on the Randi Rhodes Show on Friday), and the upcoming elections and the need to elect real progressives to congress.

Daily Kos’ David Waldman (KagroX) also joined in to talk a bit about Mitt Romney and what our side will focus on during the general election.

And as we do every Monday morning, Nicole Belle of Crooks and Liars joined me to recap the weekend talking head shows in a segment we call Fools on the Hill. Here’s what she brought us today:

I’m sure it’s because we have two primaries/caucuses within the next ten days that caused the Sunday show bookers to only ask on Republicans. Not even the bluest of Blue Dogs got booked on a Sunday show this week. You’d almost think we only had a single party in this country.

Even with just days before the Iowa Caucus, Steve King–who has been trying to position himself as a “kingmaker”--coyly still refused to endorse a Republican candidate. Methinks he doesn’t understand the concept of “kingmaker”.

Ron Paul, I suspect, is scaring the GOP inner circle, because he very well may win the Iowa caucus and they really, really don’t want to deal with anyone as ideologically rigid (and crazy, frankly) as Paul. So the issue of Paul’s racism and homophobia (normally, not a really big issue in conservative circles, let’s be honest) keeps coming up. Jake Tapper asked him again how he can distance himself from a newsletter that he put his name on and profited from with undeniable instances of racism.

Apparently, David Gregory isn’t too comfortable with Rick “Please don’t Google my name” Santorum’s recent rise in the polls either. For a guy who doesn’t think it’s his job to fact check his guests or ask follow up questions, he gave a rather hardball interview to Santorum. In this example, Gregory called him out on the patent lie (one of many told) that Obama refused to meet with Republicans.

And then Gregory showed how idiotic Santorum is on foreign policy by pinning him down that he would order airstrikes on Iran. Because you know, we’ve had so much success attacking Middle Eastern countries with no cause.

And proof that conservatives live in a completely different reality than the rest of us, on a fairly softball 60 Minutes interview, Eric Cantor’s press secretary interrupted the interview to insist that Reagan never raised taxes. Is that right?

And finally, I think Newt Gingrich is telling us what he really wants to do beside run for President (because I’m still convinced that this campaign is nothing more than a craven attempt to sell more Gingrich Media products): he wants to be a paleontologist. Unfortunately, because he’s “studied” dinosaurs, he thinks that makes him more skeptical of global warming. And this is the smart guy in the campaign.