June, 2008 archive
The Windy State 1
I Know I Had It Here Someplace . . . Let Me Look . . . Oh! Here It Is! . . . John McCain Is a Conservative Hack 1
Eric Alterman & George Zornick in The Nation (emphasis added):
On issue after issue, and from every side of the journalistic political spectrum, a campaign of deception and distortion has helped to ensure that McCain’s extreme positions and politically inspired flip-flops remain far from the consciousness of the average voter. Just as the media-promoted notion that George W. Bush was the kind of guy with whom one might enjoy a few beers managed to obscure the predictable catastrophes that lay in store for this nation once he became President, so too can the deep-seated media denial of McCain’s extremist policies and addiction to political expediency mask the fact that his victory in November would result in a continuation–and even, in some instances, an expansion–of the very policies that have brought the nation to the brink of irreversible disaster.
According to an extensive Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll taken in early May, only 27 percent of voters have positive views of the Republican Party, the lowest level for either party in the survey’s nearly two-decade history. A clear majority of voters in the same survey said they wished for a Democratic President. And yet, in what the Journal reporters termed a “remarkable” finding, McCain remained in a dead heat with Obama and Clinton in head-to-head match-ups. The authors’ explanation: “McCain’s image is trumping negatives such as the war and the economy.” More recent polls continue to show McCain running well ahead of any generic “Republican” candidate. It’s true that before the Rev. Jeremiah Wright became the most famous man in America, coverage of Obama had been extremely favorable. And McCain’s easy ride has seen some speed bumps in recent weeks, regarding both his army of conflicted lobbyists/advisers and a poorly received speech on the night Obama clinched the Democratic nomination. But decades of devotion to McCain’s causes and character are not likely to be erased overnight, even in the event of an unlikely U-turn on the part of most of the MSM.
Will Bunch hears the rhythm.
Dept. of Injustice 0
If it’s old news, shouldn’t it be referred to as “olds” (it’s an AP story; all you get is a summary):
Bushies prefer political loyalty over competence.
And this surprises us how?
Meanwhile, the Demon Princess points out that, in the Bush World, the wages of virtue is demotion:
Daniel Levin once worked for Alberto Gonzales’s Department of Justice ~ until he wrote a memo disagreeing with Bushco’s torture policies, whereupon he was asked to step down. “Too independent,” it was said, after he had himself subjected to waterboarding while researching the Bushco predetermined party line that waterboarding isn’t torture.
The Old Switcheroo 1
Iâ€™m not sure there is any other way to look at it. Gordon Smith has served the citizens of Oregon since 1992, and has served in the Senate for nearly 12 years. Heâ€™s up for election in trying times for the Republican Party. Smith, it appears, has decided to deny that heâ€™s a member of the GOP. At the very least, just check out the Gordon Smith for Senate web site. Do you see the word â€œRepublican?â€ Nope, not on the first page. Take a close look and the word â€œDemocratsâ€ is there, though. But thereâ€™s more in the last couple days to show that Gordon Smith is running from the Republican Brand as fast as he can. Like a new advertisement where he tries to link himself with Barack Obama.
Follow the link for the links to the evidence. Or something like that.
Business Reply Envelopes 0
I was fresh out of Publishers Clearing House brochures, but I figured the RNC could use some flyers from Haband.
Over at ASZ, Steve muses about what the phrase “overtly white” means, as the antonym to the phrase “overtly nonwhite,” as used below:
OK, maybe it is the English teacher in me, but that â€œovertlyâ€ is bugging me. I found it in this usage in the Washington Post this morning, in a quotation from a White Supremacist. The Post article is about the explosion of activity by racist groups on the internet in the last year or two, and how that explosion is being spurred by the candidacy of Barack Obama. Hereâ€™s the quote from the WaPo:
Neo-Nazi, skinhead and segregationist groups have reported gains in numbers of visitors to their Web sites and in membership since the senator from Illinois secured the Democratic nomination June 3. His success has aroused a community of racists, experts said, concerned by the possibility of the countryâ€™s first black president.
â€œI havenâ€™t seen this much anger in a long, long time,â€ said Billy Roper, a 36-year-old who runs a group called White Revolution in Russellville, Ark. â€œNothing has awakened normally complacent white Americans more than the prospect of America having an overtly nonwhite president.â€
What the heck does that mean? If Iâ€™m having a hard time figuring out what â€œoverty whiteâ€ means, Iâ€™m having the devil of a time figuring out what â€œovertly nonwhiteâ€ means, especially as concerns Barack Obama. Letâ€™s not parse this too much, but Obama is just as much white as he is black. Is that What Roper refers to, afraid that people will come back at him with the line I just used? â€œOvertly nonwhite,â€ then, means to him the mere color of his skin? Well, duh! Thatâ€™s exactly what Roper means as he mangles the language, something the Harvard educated Obama is not likely to have done.
Well, this looks to me like what “overtly white” means in the context of Mr. Billy Roper’s statements and beliefs:
Racial epithets were spray-painted on the lawns of two houses and a playground in the Colton Meadow community near St. Georges on Friday night and Saturday morning.
Racial slurs in bold, yellow print were found on the lawns of homes of black and Hispanic families sometime Friday night, said county police spokesman Cpl. Trinidad Navarro.
The nearby children’s playground was marred with the words KKK, Jews and racial epithets as well as toilet paper.
Link to the full Washington Post story here.
Bonddad looks at the long(er) term:
This (S&P/Case-Shiller home-price-ed.) index has been dropping for a year and a half. That’s called a trend. And it’s not a good trend.
In addition, this isn’t going to end anytime soon. Inventory is still sky high and consumer demand is still hampered by massive debt and low confidence.
(snip a discussion of consumer confidence)
Short version: this is bad news all the way around. Period.
Link to the S&P/Case-Shiller home-price index here.
Ray, who’s off working on his post on how hedge funds work, thinks the Republicans are trying to stave off
the crash the fruits of their economic failures until January 21, 2009, so they can then pretend that their policies of the last umpty-ump years had nothing–nothing!–to do with the results thereof.
Who Should You Trust? 0
The Booman asks a good question.
Underwear in the News 0
Her bra was an attention-getter:
A Colorado woman stranded on a rocky ledge in the Bavarian Alps for nearly three days was rescued after she used her sports bra to signal for help.
Berchtesgaden, Germany police officer Lorenz Rasp said that he helped lift Jessica Bruinsma, 24, of Colorado Springs to safety by helicopter on Thursday after she caught the attention of lumberjacks by attaching her sports bra to a cable used to haul timber down the mountain.
H/T Karen for the link.
Tipping Point 0
The Associated Press reports that persons who depend on tips for a substantial part of their income are hurting, because their customers are hurting.
Remember that the minimum wage for the folks in food service is, well, minimal.
Bushonomics: Making the rich richer and the poor poorer in myriad ways.
I Won! (Updated) 0
Todd recorded his podcast in a live feed today.
I listened and joined the chat room.
When the time came, he asked us listeners to put our phone numbers into the chat room. Then he pumped the numbers into a randomizer.
And my phone rang.
Oh, yeah, and there was a monetary prize, just for answering the phone.
Opie others had been paying attention, they could have joined the fun.
I think I’ll go to Delaware Park tomorrow. I once hit an Exacta there for $237.00. Maybe my number’s about to come up again.
Addendum, Later the Next Day:
You can listen to the show here. If you really want my high-pitched whine of a voice (which Opie endured for must of a week), Todd called me about 58 minutes into the show.
My podcatcher hasn’t brought down the show yet.
John McCain Is a Conservative Hack Who Is Compelling Me To Drink Liberally 0
Rule of Law 0
The Federal Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia has ruled that the Current Federal Administration can’t jail someone just because he wants to, however he trumps up the evidence:
A federal appeals court in Washington has invalidated the Bush Administration’s finding that a detainee held for more than six years in the military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is “an enemy combatant,” and ordered the government to release him, transfer him, or offer him a new hearing.
In a ruling decided Friday but released today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled that Huzaifa Parhat, an ethnic Chinese Uighur captured during the early stages of the U.S. war in Afghanistan, was inappropriately designated an enemy combatant at a hearing known as a “combatant status review tribunal.” The court said the United States can no longer hold him.
It is time for Mr. Bush to recognize that this country has a president.
Not a king.
But he won’t.
I Send Mail 3
The Geek News Central podcast is relentlessly non-political. Nevertheless, in Friday’s show, Todd asked his listeners to let him know what they think about opening up ANWR and the continental shelf for oil exploration.
So I did:
You asked for comments about opening up ANWR and the continental shelf for oil exploration.
According to the discussion on this episode of the Diane Rehm Show, opening these areas would have little or no effect on current or future oil prices or on U. S. oil reserves.
The discussion indicated that one of the reasons for pressure to open these areas from the oil companies, who already have oil leases for areas that they have not yet started to explore or use, is the oil companies’ stock prices. One of the factors that affects their stock prices is how many reserves they have. In short, their interest may not be primarily oil supplies, so much as Wall Street supplies.
Opening up these areas would do little or nothing to help the everyday person and lots to help the rich get richer with paper profits.
The policy that got us into this mess is ably dissected in this article from The Nation.
Salvage that Laptop 0
Five steps to resurrect that old laptop.
Michael D. at Balloon Juice.
Bushonomics: It’s Not Over Yet 0
Follow the link to see the evidence. Bonddad:
The bottom line is we’re nowhere near the end of the problems in the financial sector. Anyone who tells you otherwise is lyning through their teeth.
Belaboring the Obvious 2
I wonder how many MBA’s it took to figure this out. From Market Watch (I highly recommend reading the comments):
U.S. stocks on Monday will attempt to recover from some hefty losses, but any comeback will likely be contingent on three factors: the price of crude oil, any hints of inflation, and developments in the troubled financial sector.
“Obviously this market is in lockstep with three things, the most important of which is the price of a barrel of oil,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Jefferies & Co.
On Friday, stocks sank as crude-oil futures gained, a trend that played throughout the week, as the weaker U.S. dollar added to the allure of oil and other commodities as a currency hedge. And, more trouble in the financial sector compounded market anxiety.
Seen on the Street 0
License Plate: Blk Diva.
Rear Window Decal: Blk Diva.
Third Brake Light: Blk Diva. (I kid you not–it was in the lens.)
The owner of this vehicle clearly is not suffering an identity crisis.
For curiosity’s sake, I wanted to catch up with the vehicle so as to glom the driver, but Second Son’s 1992 Ford Ranger’s–(I was on my way to 84 Lumber and it has a bigger bed than my Little Yellow Truck)–Second Son’s 1992 Ford Ranger’s get up and go long ago got up and went (that’s why a 1992 Ford Ranger is a perfect vehicle for Second Son. It’s got “not up and are you kidding me?”)