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If, by chance, you felt hot breath on your neck… 26 February 2009

Posted by marisacat in DC Politics, Divertissements, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.
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Nicknamed the Eye of God, the amazing object is actually a shell of gas and dust that has been blown off by a faint central star. [ESO via the Telegraph]

The bright blue pupil and the white of the eye are fringed by flesh-coloured eyelids – but this eye is so big that it light takes two and a half years to cross from one side to the other.

The object is actually a shell of gas and dust that has been blown off by a faint central star. Our own solar system will meet a similar fate five billion years in the future.

It lies around 700 light-years away in the constellation of Aquarius, and can be dimly seen in small backyard telescopes by amateur astronomers who call it the Helix nebula. It covers an area of sky around a quarter the size of the full moon.

The photo was taken with a giant telescope at the European Southern Observatory, high on a mountaintop at La Silla in Chile. It is so detailed that a close-up reveals distant galaxies within the central eyeball.

I on the other hand… have picked up the very opposite of the ‘big eye in the sky’… a tiny mouse has moved in. A few nights ago I thought I heard a bit of a rustle in the bedroom… but then noticed I still had a big wad of cream colored tissue on the bed, from inside a gift box… so I thought, well that is it.   But tonight I saw a little mouse. Haven’t had one in years, and last time it was a much, much colder winter… that time, it moved from the bedroom to a storage / cooking pots and pans sort of area, part of a big old range I have in the kitchen (warm, as it is right along side the pilot light), and after a while, in the early spring, disappeared.  Saved me doing anything about it. Fingers crossed it goes that easy this time…

***

I volunteer my mouse to the Treasury!  Ask not what your country can do for you… ;)

TAPPER:  OK.  And second question, Paul Volcker today said about the staffing at the Treasury Department, “There’s an area that I think is shameful, the secretary of the treasury sitting there without a deputy, without any undersecretaries, without any, as far as I know, assistant secretaries responsive in substantive areas.  At a time of very stark crisis, you shouldn’t be sitting there alone.” He said, “Now, various things have contributed to this, I guess, include vetting procedures, but it’s really an unfortunate situation.” And he said that we can’t have a “weak” Treasury at a moment like this. Does the president agree with Mr. Volcker that this is a problem, his Treasury staff?

GIBBS:  Well, this president is committed — (clears throat) excuse me — to ensuring that we have as many people and as quickly as possible that we can get into this government. I think I would say a little — I wouldn’t quite agree with everything that our friend Mr. Volcker.  I don’t — I don’t think that the secretary is alone at the Treasury Department.  I think there are many able people assisting him. And I asked somewhat of this question yesterday, and I asked that they pull some numbers for me.  So, to figure out exactly the breakdown of this includes political appointees and Schedule C appointees, that by the end of February there were 279 that were staffed up in the first Bush administration, 286 in the Clinton administration, 200 and — this is for the whole government — 288 for the second Bush, and as of today, 483 in the Obama administration.

TAPPER:  In the Treasury Department?

GIBBS:  This is for — this is government wide.  I will find out.  I don’t have specific Treasury figures in front of me, but I’ll pull those.

TAPPER:  Because that was the point that he was making.

GIBBS:  These are — this is in relation partly to some questions that I got yesterday about that.  But no, I think the Treasury Department, I think what what we’ve asked the Treasury Department to do is certainly a lot, and I think what they’ve produced through a recovery and reinvestment plan, both working with a financial stability package, dealing with individual banks, insuring that we have a way forward that protects our manufacturing base in autos — we’ve asked a lot of Treasury and they’re doing a lot of great work.

I offer the mouse. I think they need the help…

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1. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 February 2009

Where the Money Goes

Early this winter, the PBS “NewsHour with Jim Lehrer” interviewed the medical director at a community clinic in Northern California. He recalled the sight of military equipment moving along railroad tracks next to his office. “I’ve joked with my colleagues,” Dr. David Katz said, “if we could just get one of those Abrams tanks we could probably fund all the primary care clinics for a year.”

The comment didn’t make it on the air – it was only included in video on a PBS Web site – and that was unfortunate. We need more public focus on what our tax dollars are buying.

As medical providers and patients struggle with low funding and high barriers to adequate health care, the nation’s largesse for war continues to soar. Every day, the U.S. Treasury spends close to $2 billion on the military. Such big numbers are hard to fathom, but it’s worth doing the math.

In Yolo County, for instance, where Dr. Katz watches Abrams tanks roll by his beleaguered clinic, taxpayers have already provided the IRS with $449.8 million to fund the Iraq war. That’s enough to provide health care to 168,154 children for a full year.

Those figures come from the National Priorities Project, a nonpartisan group with a nifty – and often chilling – online calculator (www. nationalpriorities.org). Type in the name of your locality, and huge military costs suddenly hit close to home.

More than 40 percent of federal tax dollars go to military spending. The outlays buy a mighty war machine while depleting our own communities.

2. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 February 2009
3. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 February 2009
4. marisacat - 26 February 2009

1

When the US troops were massing on the Iraqi border, I used to say, there is our health care.

5. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 February 2009

Johnny Cash would have been 77 today. I put up a brief little remembrance.

6. lucid - 26 February 2009

Last thread:

A Republican legislator in Colorado opposed a bill requiring pregnant women to be tested for HIV.

No one should be required to test for HIV period – but particularly pregnant women. It is a well known fact [accepted even by those that believe in HIV] that women who have had more than one pregnancy routinely test positive for HIV because both the ELISA and Western Blot are antibody tests looking for non-specific antibodies present in every human being. Pregnant women have much higher titres of these antibodies especially if they’ve had multiple pregnancies- often high enough to light up a test.

Here’s a very clear description of how these tests work.

7. diane - 26 February 2009

From EAMONN McCANN: The Solution to Ireland’s Austerity Plan “Make Bono Pay Tax”

The most eye-catching placard on a 120,000-strong march in Dublin last Saturday against the Irish government’s austerity response to the tottering of the capitalist system was held aloft by a scrawny teenager with the look of a music-lover about him, reading “Make Bono Pay Tax.”

snip

The cut-backs and attacks on public sector workers come against the background of a banking scandal which, proportionately, dwarfs the crimes of the bankster class in the US. Rummaging through the rubble of Anglo Irish Bank which collapsed at the end of 2008 and was nationalized in January, investigators discovered that the bank’s founder and boss Sean Fitzpatrick was secretly in hock to his own bank to the tune of €87 million, which he had shifted into Irish Life and Permanent on the day before the annual audit and shifted back again the day afterwards. Fitzpatrick—“Seanie” to both Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Brian Cowan and his predecessor Bertie Ahern—had performed this manoeuvre with sums of around €80 million every year for the past seven years.

snip

The bail-out burden of all this falls on the tax-payers. Hence the mass fury expressed on the Dublin march and the dismay of many at the nervous pusillanimity of union leaders on the platform…….Hence, too, a new focus on tax-avoiders who live high off the hog in Dublin while basing their businesses in Euro-zone tax-shelters. Like U2.

More than 40 years ago, the Beatles followed Maharishi Mahesh Yogi to India in search of a spiritual haven. Three years ago, U2 followed him, in search of a tax haven. (By the time the Maharishi faded from mortal life in February 2006, he was living at his Dutch estate, presiding over a business empire worth more than a man who scorned money could be bothered to count. He’d moved to Holland in 1990 for tax purposes. Or, rather, no-tax purposes.”)

Cork-born British television super-star Graham Norton commented at the time: “People like Bono really annoy me. He goes to hell and back to avoid paying tax. He has a special accountant. He works out Irish tax loopholes. And then he’s asking me to buy a well for an African village. Tarmac a road or pay for a school, you tight-wad!”

But Norton’s words of modest wisdom didn’t resonate the media mainstream which endlessly celebraties Bono. They laud his selflessness in occasionally taking time off from counting the cash he had squirrelled away to berate the Irish authorities for refusing to give more of the money they had collected from tax-compliant citizens towards alleviating world hunger. They report worshipfully on Bono’s peregrinations around the planet in the company of the liars, murderers, thieves and whores who were have run the global economy into ruin.

The arrival of U2 confirmed Holland as the European Union’s number one tax haven. Corporations which have joined the band in establishing headquarters there to avoid paying tax in their home countries include Coca Cola, Ikea, Nike and Gucci.

The band is set to tour their new album, “No Line on the Horizon”. So stand by for the latest swirl of jangly guitar enclosed in a fog of undefined feeling. Expect no grit, no danger, nothing jagged or ragged to disturb tranquillity, but a toxic cloud of fluffy rhetoric, a soundtrack for the terminally self-satisfied…..

…..”

8. marisacat - 26 February 2009

Froomkin has a round up piece on the budget… fwiw…

9. marisacat - 26 February 2009

7

Bono is a business… and his ”charities” are way way way too close to governments… which make his charities even more complex than just being a business.

He’s developed a model other “celebrities” in high profile places use, where government, single or plural, is the problem.

No 2 guy at the “Make it Right” foundation (Brad Pitt) to rebuild NO, or at least parts of the Lower 9th… and things have gotten very very quiet with the MIR foundation…

Trevor Neilson
Senior Advisor

Trevor Neilson is a partner in the Global Philanthropy Group. He has advised a number of the world’s leading philanthropists, including Bono, Bill Gates, President Bill Clinton, and Sir Richard Branson, and has been involved in the creation and implementation of many of the world’s most respected philanthropic initiatives. He has extensive experience in addressing global and domestic problems including disease, poverty, education, child welfare, refugees, emergency relief and the environment.

Trevor helped create Bono’s Debt, AIDS, Trade Africa (DATA) organization, and continues to serve on its policy board. He served as Executive Director of the Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS (GBC), which was created with investments from Bill Gates, George Soros and Ted Turner and represented more than 220 multinational companies with philanthropic interests related to the AIDS pandemic.

Prior to his work with the GBC, Trevor served as the Director of Public Affairs and Director of Special Projects for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the world’s largest foundation. Trevor also served in the White House during the Clinton administration. Trevor is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and serves on the board of LabNow, a biotechnology company that seeks to improve global health through point-of-care laboratory testing, as well as the advisory boards of the Wikimedia Foundation, the Genocide Intervention Network and Global Action for Children. He was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, and served as a Visiting Practitioner at the Georgetown University Center for Public and Nonprofit Leadership.

On and on it goes…

10. marisacat - 26 February 2009

Angry Arab… and he’s right.

If she was Muslim, it would be on the front page of NYT

“A 14-year-old Israeli girl has got a divorce from her 17-year-old husband, making her what media are describing as the country’s youngest divorcee. The divorce came after a rabbinical court ruled that their wedding met the major requirements of Jewish law.” (BBC)

Posted by As’ad at 8:45 AM

11. diane - 26 February 2009

Marisa (9)

jeez what can be said…

I really liked Eamonn McCann’s a toxic cloud of fluffy rhetoric, a soundtrack for the terminally self-satisfied….. seems to me it fits most “high net worth” philanthropists… what an oxymoron…never the media discussion of any irony as to that “net worth” and the philanthropy they spout off about…meanwhile, on the home front..I’d lay odds that many of their offspring are suicidal. I really cringed at a Jolie comment in Vanity Fair on line, about teaching her adopted props oops I meant tots, capitalism, by passing out little masonic gold stars to them for good behaviour..she was dead serious apparently……….

and was so unsurprised at do gooder and greener VC Al Gore’s son driving around with the medicine cabinet in his belly at about 100 mph in La La Land, it’s likely the lawnmower’s used for the Gore family estates are larger than most studio apartments.

12. diane - 26 February 2009

And if Woody Allen were a muslim, he’d likely be behind bars……….as he probably should, from what I’ve read, but we so love our geniuses.

13. marisacat - 27 February 2009

I had seen this article kicking around for a couple of days … some blither about the “Obama Code” (no shit) from Lakoff… and carefully avoided it…

But landed on it wandering at The Washington Note. Geesh. The nation is fully dysfunctionally INSANE.

[F]or supporters of the President, it is crucial to understand the Code in order to talk overtly about the old values our new president is communicating. It is necessary because tens of millions of Americans–both conservatives and progressives–don’t yet perceive the vital sea change that Obama is bringing about.

The word “code” can refer to a system of either communication or morality. President Obama has integrated the two. The Obama Code is both moral and linguistic at once. The President is using his enormous skills as a communicator to express a moral system. As he has said, budgets are moral documents. His economic program is tied to his moral system and is discussed in the Code, as are just about all of his other policies.

Behind the Obama Code are seven crucial intellectual moves that I believe are historically, practically, and cognitively appropriate, as well as politically astute. They are not all obvious, and jointly they may seem mysterious. That is why it is worth sorting them out one-by-one. …

He is so great, you need a code book.

BTW, for anyone wiht a strong stomach, Pt 3 is especially disgusting. Utter spew about bi conceptualism (no really!, Rick Warren is a Bi Conceptualist…) and bi partisanship. Laughable, and worse STUPID… as I think it is clear that the R set ObsterRama up wtih Gregg. As much as the no lips white boys (the Sanfords and that ilk) of the R party set up that fucking loon Jindal. That was a quick almost silent take down. Whoosh. Gone but for the havoc he can wreak on LA.

14. diane - 27 February 2009

This comment was hilarious (did you post it Marisa?)

“Posted by PissedOffAmerican, Feb 24 2009, 9:57AM – Link
What a long winded crock of shit.

Code.

Gads, like his escalation in Pakistan and Afghanistan must be deciphered through the translation of an some sort of intellectual pidgin formulated by great intelligence and enlightened moral fiber.

You gotta be kidding me.

Meanwhile, he, (as Turley said last night on Maddow), “carries the water” for Bush, supporting some of the most egrigious, controversial, and criminal policies of the past administration.

I don’t need a President speaking in political tongues. I need, and want, a President that will say things like, “Hey, Holder, if this piece of shit Karl Rove doesn’t get his ass before Congress, NOW, than arrest him”.

This particular guest post is some of the loftiest horseshit I have seen in along time. Usually one has to watch where you step to avoid the field spore. In this case, you have to duck.”

15. marisacat - 27 February 2009

HA! Thanks for that..diane

I had nto made it to the comments yet (the 7 “moves” kinda slowed me down!)… but I usually agree with PissedOffAMerican… LOL….

16. marisacat - 27 February 2009

LOL:

Posted by Pacific John, Feb 24 2009, 11:46AM – Link

This column is going to be the source of endless satire.

It’s an amazing feat for the high priest of moral contrast to turn rejection of partisanship into the awesomeness of “code.”

17. marisacat - 27 February 2009

A nation of “marions”:

Posted by Marion, Feb 25 2009, 8:42PM – Link

PissedOffAmerican:Lakoff is not referring to speaking in tongues.

Dr. Lakoff provides an additional linguistic perspective on Obama’s language and the way he frames his concepts. It’s worth the effort to understand what Dr. Lakoff is attemptig to share with you, “how” language means. He knows what he’s talking about. Do yourselves a favor and reach beyond what you assume. Some additional advice? Read a book!

Of course I am happy if ObRama and his faithful have their own little language. Whatever helps them. (Condescension goes both ways… :roll: )

18. diane - 27 February 2009

Best two laughs I’ve had in a while today from PissedOffAmerican and Eamonn McCann …glad there’s still a few sane folks around…jeez the shit is gettin thick…..

I guess I better go see if I can find out where to get a frakkin code ring over the weekend…maybe ship a few to Baghram and Pakistan…..and then maybe a few to elders without computers soz they can better understand why it is their medical records should become an industry onto themselves, and are better off online (likely sans HPAA) where errors are likely to be multiplied, and never be corrected, than in the privacy and safety of their doctors office.

19. diane - 27 February 2009

Ohh lordddd…of course it’s Marion…how special…..and thanks for the explanation..cuz I thought he was peaking in tongues…perhaps a bit to much Starbucks with Java Jacket…..guess I should read a book.or two…….

20. marisacat - 27 February 2009

Well I have to say that reading Lakoff and getting a laugh off it beats a Conason I just read over at TruthDig… ACTIVELY selling that from the congressional and High Holy Coder cabinets de toilette in DC we will be getting real, genuine, Canadian, UK, European style health care.

Two parties, loaded with criminals and liars.

21. diane - 27 February 2009

me, I’m going to sleep and savor the humor, bleak as it was, thanks for the Lakoff post!

gnight!

22. marisacat - 27 February 2009

Somebody (“hidden comment”) ahs a good diary up at FSZ about recent events Oscar Grant shooting/BART protest and possible boycott.

23. NYCO - 27 February 2009

13. The Obama Code? Sounds like the DaVinci Code. Maybe it will be made into a bad, overhyped movie.

Oh, wait, we’re already living in one.

24. Intermittent Bystander - 27 February 2009
25. marisacat - 27 February 2009

Obama Moves to Undo ‘Conscience’ Rule for Health Workers

By DAVID STOUT
Published: February 27, 2009

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration moved on Friday to undo a last-minute Bush administration rule granting broad protections to health workers who refuse to take part in abortions or provide other health care that goes against their consciences.

The Department of Health and Human Services served notice on Friday, through a message to the White House Office of Management and Budget, that it intends to rescind the regulation, which was originally announced on Dec. 19, 2008, and took effect on the day President Obama took office.

When the administration publishes official notice of its intent, probably next week, a 30-day period for public comment will begin, after which the regulation can be repealed or modified. …

26. marisacat - 27 February 2009

CA hits an official 10.1% unemployed. It was under 6 pts just a few months ago. Wonder how high it really is…

27. catnip - 27 February 2009

Last thread:

66

“We’re going to be about targeting incumbents to make space for Obama to be more progressive,” said Glenn Greenwald,…

They’re assuming he actually wants to be “more progressive”. What a joke.

Send money now!!

28. catnip - 27 February 2009

That is a stunning pic, mcat.

29. marisacat - 27 February 2009

Yes I thought the blue “pupil” to the “eye”, however they managed it, was pretty stunning.

30. diane - 27 February 2009

Marisa (22)

Of course with the, to be expected, white picket fence pushback

The fact of the matter remains, but not for very long, that if a white person, no matter their background, had been shot in the back like that, under those circumstances, it would still be front page/Yahoo! Headlines…..oh but wait,….a dusky prez……………

Thing I really dislike about the web (in addition to gatekeeper bots), is the desire to be the one with the witty repartee, or “vicious mob calming wisdom”..within nanoseconds (and I must confess to it’s lure…and alas, at the end of the day…whom will be able to compete with the speed of technology? Certainly not the Pakistanis …nor us); resulting in a near total absence of analysis or foresight….

*****

..just thought of a great title for that Ratzy pic: Windswept House……

******

gotta run, a rare weekday off, must make use of it….

;0)

31. marisacat - 27 February 2009

Ohhhh.. but I thought everything was peachy now that he’s named Chas Freeman to the NIC… ?? No???

LOL via Ben Smith.

February 27, 2009
Categories: Middle East
U.S. pulling out of racism conference

White House aides told Jewish leaders on a conference call today that the United States will boycott the United Nations’ World Conference on Racism [Durban II] over hostility to Israel in draft documents prepared for the April conference.

The aides, including an advisor to U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice, Jennifer Simon, and longtime Obama advisor Samantha Power, said the administration will not participate in further negotiations on the current text or participate in a conference based on the text, sources on the call said.

They left open the option of re-engaging on a “much shorter, much different text,” a source said.

The draft outcome document, typically negotiated in advance and available here (.pdf), contains sharp and specific criticism of Israel for its treatment of the Palestinians, and Western European nations and Canada have also signaled that they may boycott the conference in Geneva. …

CHAAANGE.

32. marisacat - 27 February 2009

Daddy O is gonna weigh in with the Internationalists named above….

The conference is known informally as Durban II after a 2001 conference in South Africa that included a heavy focus on Israel and calls to reinstate a U.N. resolution equating Zionism and racism. Libya is chairing the preparatory meetings for this year’s conference, one of several factors prompting boycott calls.

Obama is expected to issue a statement on the subject later this afternoon, and the participants were asked not to discuss the call until a formal statement is released.

33. marisacat - 27 February 2009

1:06 PM on the Pacific….

DJI 7, 068…

34. diane - 27 February 2009

are you okay Marisa?

02/27/09 1:22 PM PST

I’m serious.

35. marisacat - 27 February 2009

Democracy NOW… between a MASS primary care physician and someone from New America Foundation… gah.

JUAN GONZALEZ: Well, the Massachusetts plan has been held up in recent years as a model. What are the main problems that you see with how the plan has operated there?

DR. DAVID HIMMELSTEIN: Well, I see them day to day. I’m a primary care doctor here in Massachusetts, and my patients still can’t afford the care they need. They’ve given some people insurance, but they’ve actually given them insurance, in most cases, that has such holes in deductibles, co-payments, that people still can’t afford care. And there are still hundreds of thousands uninsured.

And meanwhile, the thing is costing much more than they said it would, and they’re draining the money out of community clinics, public hospitals, mental healthcare for the chronically ill, to keep the system afloat. So, at the public hospital where I work, we’ve had massive budget cuts. We’re closing half of the psychiatric wards. We’re closing the only in-patient substance abuse ward. That’s what the problem is, is that in order to keep the insurance industry in business, they’re actually having to slash care and leave it unaffordable to people who have coverage.

DR. DAVID HIMMELSTEIN: Well, first of all, we don’t have everyone covered. In fact, there are lots of uninsured people left in Massachusetts despite this massive spending, and more and more every day. We’ve lost 85,000 jobs in our state in just the last year, and the coverage hasn’t expanded to take those 85,000 people in. So, that’s a myth.

And we told them off—right off the bat it was going to cost more than they said. They refused to believe us. And we’re telling the Obama people that the plan they’re talking about costs much more than what they are saying. The cost containment they’re claiming in their plan, the Congressional Budget Office has told them won’t work. They’re saying computers are going to save massive amounts of money. There’s no evidence for that at all. The Congressional Budget Office says there’s no evidence for that at all.

The efficiencies Mr. Nichols is talking about, we could get those efficiencies, but only if we get the insurance companies out of the system. We do $400 billion each year in useless paperwork in healthcare, and there’s no way of getting rid of that unless you get rid of the private health insurance companies.

“the Obama people”… more BLIGHT. We’ll sink deeper.

36. marisacat - 27 February 2009

diane

of course I am fine. Why wouldn’t I be?

37. diane - 27 February 2009

jeez..if someone has Marisa’s phone number or knows where she lives…please call…knock on the door….

02/27/09 1:30PM PST

38. diane - 27 February 2009

sorry, post 33 freaked me out…
carry on

39. marisacat - 27 February 2009

diane

does not matter to me what the DJ does, any day or hour. I got out of the market, 100%, in August of 2000. I just occasionally note it as it is part of a reactionary package that starts running around with its head off.

Can’t imagine it gave rise to such worry.

40. diane - 27 February 2009

well, in case the last response got last…..post 33 freaked me out…

41. diane - 27 February 2009

sorry again, never saw a post from you that was just a time and date stamp..and not familiar with what “DJI” represents…..and along with such rotten shit happening all over…wellll…….

42. marisacat - 27 February 2009

DJI = Dow Jones Industrial… and at that time it hit 7 068. That is all…

43. diane - 27 February 2009

oh jeez…..dow fucker jones…

never have invested…awfully embarresed…

just a fire drill

nothin to see here (mopes off and mutters about frikken acronyms…)

;0(

44. diane - 27 February 2009

Marisa (42)

yes…I’m slow….but wait… got it just before you posted that!!!!

WAAAAIIIIIT FOR MEEEEEEE

jeez……………

45. marisacat - 27 February 2009

hmm It’s official. Iraq is a success. Or the military was successful, if that is careful parsing…. No, really, Obster says so. As he looks forward.

Asked if the American invasion of Iraq, which he opposed as a state senator with no vote on the matter at the time was worthwhile, in retrospect, Obama says: “I think we can say without equivocation that our military was successful.”

Was it worth the more than 4,000 American lives lost, tens of thousands of casualties and many more Iraqis killed?

“Well, you know, I don’t want to look backwards,” Obama says in an interview with Jim Lehrer of the Newshour, which PBS will air this evening. “As you know, I opposed this war, I did not think it was the right decision, but I don’t want to in any way diminish the enormous sacrifices that have been made by our men and women in uniform….

“I will tell you that the most sobering things that I do as president relate to the deployment of these young men and women,” Obama tells Lehrer. “Signing letters of those who have fallen in battle, it is a constant reminder of how critical these decisions are and the importance of the Commander in Chief, Congress, all of us who are in positions of power to make sure that we have thought through these decisions free of politics and we are doing what’s necessary for the safety and security of the American people.” …

Yes he is interviewed today on The News Hour, at Camp Lejeune, before they left.

46. BooHooHooMan - 27 February 2009

The only time I’d be worried is if, as mcat is posting,
she suddenly went all:

My God! It’s the Mouse! And He’s 6 Feet Tall!
But it’s Harry Reid! And He’s trying to Run!
Why I’m gonna…..

47. marisacat - 27 February 2009

Actually I am wondering if I hve two mice (in which case I would b outnumbered… LOL). Or an active mouse. hmmm. And while I don’t want to exactly encourage this sort of thing, wondering if I should put a bit of lettuce on a plate, on his route (along an outside wall in my bedroom).

hmmm.

48. catnip - 27 February 2009

“Well, you know, I don’t want to look backwards,” Obama says in an interview with Jim Lehrer of the Newshour,

For someone who really seems to abhor looking backwards, isn’t it odd that he wrote 2 autobiographies?

49. BooHooHooMan - 27 February 2009

At Citi today,
36% Nationalization Investificationalization.

Something. Fuck. My Obama Code Decoder Ring doesn’t work. The one that was 39% off but with a 36% Buy-in accesseriffic optionalizer . Something. Like Citi’s slide today. And the Nationalization MONEY without controlling interest attached.

The Guy, his Admin, his cave-in Party and excuse for Leadership on the Hill, they are doing everything they can to provide security to Stanley Fischer’s crowd at Citi. They should put the thing out of business- Immediately- and seize the receivables. . Instead they are pumping money in and Citi ,its huge recievables at least, will be owned/ controlled by a smaller set, who tanked the thing in the first place…

50. marisacat - 27 February 2009

It’s gone way past anything I can grasp. I read a joke today that we got 10% of something worth 1/5th of what it once was and we paid for almost 40% of what once was.

Confused.. and no more off than any other assessment.

51. BooHooHooMan - 27 February 2009

Good one, catnip WRT Obam’s

Well, you know, I don’t want to look backwards

Maybe he can try that out before rimming Netanyahu.

52. catnip - 27 February 2009

Who’s really being bailed out?

Citi Shares Sink Despite Saudi Prince’s Investment

Saudi Prince Alwaleed raises stake in Citigroup, but his support fails to muster confidence

By MADLEN READ and STEPHEN BERNARD AP Business Writers
NEW YORK November 21, 2008 (AP)

And isn’t there also some Chinese investment in Citi?

53. catnip - 27 February 2009

51. I have my own little Obama decoder ring. It doesn’t give exactly the same messages as his true believers get though. ;)

54. marisacat - 27 February 2009

AP full text:

Court rejects Obama bid to stop wiretapping suit

By DEVLIN BARRETT – 3 hours ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration has lost its argument that the state secrets privilege is a good enough reason to stop a lawsuit over the government’s warrantless wiretapping program.

A federal appeals court in San Francisco has rejected the Justice Department’s request for an emergency stay. The Obama administration, like the Bush administration before it, claimed that national security would be compromised if a lawsuit brought by the U.S. chapter of an Islamic charity was allowed to proceed.

The case was brought by the Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation, a defunct charity with a chapter in Oregon.

The appeals court decision is a setback for the new Obama administration as it adopts some of the same positions on national security and secrecy as the Bush administration.

55. BooHooHooMan - 27 February 2009

WRT Citi, they persuaded a friendly Saudi, Prince Walid Bin Talal, to convert a chunk of his preferred stock to common. And why not?

The central number to me is the 1.6 trillion- 1600Bil- that are assets on Citi’s books- what they are owed – compared to what the remaining shares are going for..Consider this against the paltry efforts to let little peeps off the hook. In other words, that money owed TO Citi or the assets backing them WILL Be extracted with minimal write downs for non-crooks.

So compared to the dibbs on the debt owed TO Citi, with Obama doing the dirty work of propping it up, essentially garanteeing its performance while providing squat in relief for consumers, the loot is going now for UNDER a penny on the dollar. How overvalued are Citi’s books? Not that high under any stretch of the imagination. And frankly, it doesn’t matter as long as Ob carries their water subsidizing the arrangement.

At Friday’s share price, the market value of Citi – which has some $1,600bn in assets and operations in 130 countries – was less than $9bn.

So 1. 6 trillion is going to be ripped off in these final acts for 9 B or less. A little more than half a cent a dollar! Ah-ah-ah the accountants will say- what about what THEY OWE, what Citi owes? It’s not as simple as that!- an ordinary beancounter would say, as if ordinary beancounting is what’s going on… But it sure is that simple. The shylocks holding Citi receivables – 22% on many branded and serviced consumer cards, Cite handles Home Depot’s charge cards for example – these notes are going to be retained with little worry for Citi, in turn, paying THEIR creditors.

Surely CITI’s CREDITORS will Scream! How could it be that simple!?
Sure it is – if a large portion of what Citi “owes” is bullshit, insider contrived self dealing offshore. Or, as is the case with the larger amount owed OUT, much of the money it “owes” is to the Pushover Fed or the Treasury. Furthermore, The Fed and Treasury are more than willing to cooordinate writedowns at other institutions for Citi’s liabilities. Which is exactly what’s happening, as Citi was picked for political reasons to be a “winner” in the Bailout Bonanza. .

This scam _ I can hear that Lethargic Mush Mouthed Gasbag, Barney Frank saying Who Knew? Bullshit. Calling Barney on his routine.

There’s more than a 160 to 1 return being teed up with this debt wrestling and who will get paid from it – less the workout costs, the fix for THAT being teed up as well. The Poor Poor Banks, Barney will snark up or maybe sputter out – It’s an Outrage! What Bullshit. They’ll be allowed to write off workout costs, the lawyers will be happy, and they can ALL thank Chuck Schumer and Barney -Why Don’t Ya Blow Me, Frankly.

So who’s moving in on Citi’s lucre other than Prince Walid Bin Talal? The Saudi they didn’t hesitate to mention in the popular press?

From the NYT today-

The Treasury will convert its stake to the extent that Citigroup can persuade private investors, including several foreign government investment funds, to go along. Treasury will match the private investors’ conversions dollar for dollar, and do so at the most favorable price and terms offered to any other private investor.

…….Citigroup has been pursuing similar plans with preferred stockholders, including several foreign governments investment funds. The bank has offered to exchange up to $27.5 billion of preferred stock into common shares at a price of $3.25 a share, a 32 percent premium over Thursday’s close. It will do so by issuing warrants. If the transaction is not approved by Citigroup shareholders, those securities will carry a 9 percent dividend that will increase quarterly.

The motherfuckers simply ran up their balance sheet courtesy of the Fed Window, taking and handing out all sorts of payoff along the way, then, among Citi shareholders, they ran-off foolish individual investors and pension funds, and now are going to hand a 32% return, to the same “in the loop” group, the un-named “foreign government investment funds”. Any idea who they might be WRT Citi ? Who controls THEM? and it’s 1.6 Trillion hanging in the balance?

I mean really. You literally had the Vice Chair of the Company vamoose at the top of the market three years ago to take Israeli Citizenship and the Governorship of The Bank of Israel offered to him by Bebe Netanyahu, a longtime friend.

Stanley Fischer, and Bebe- and Avigdor Lieberman – they’re all laughing their asses off right now. Among others.

56. diane - 27 February 2009

BooHooHooMan (46)

“The only time I’d be worried…”

as I lick some of the egg off of my face, which I’ve frugally saved for leftovers (never know when the grocery store will shut down),…I say good thing you’re not me BooHooHooMan,…there would’ve really been an embarressing fire drill goin on………………

(and just soz I may have a bit more egg for later, this comment may be a duplicate since I received some vigorous ISP pinging? as I was posting it.)

*****

Catnip (48)

Touche

57. diane - 27 February 2009

Marisa..thanks hon ;0) (but what my leftover egg stockpile?)

(insider decoder ring thang)

58. marisacat - 27 February 2009

ugh.. big San Francisco layoffs today.. Parks and Rec, HHS (city) Health, Public Works… 262 people.

59. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 February 2009
60. diane - 27 February 2009

layoffs today…Parks..HHS (city) Health…

Oh NO Marisa, DON’T WEEP, JESAMA and NEWSOM with CHILD are GREEN and working on Health stimuli as we post…..

61. marisacat - 27 February 2009

oh yes Gavin the Great… LOL… and the new wif and soon to be kidlet.

Supposedly the lay offs saved the city 22million…

62. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 February 2009

45 – Yup, Ricks is on Olbermann celebrating that O’s speech was a “mission accomplished/stay in Iraq” speech, and that it was “the speech George W. Bush would have given if he could give speeches.”

I turned it off … not saying he was wrong, just don’t need to watch him start feeding on some Iraqi child’s heart.

63. marisacat - 27 February 2009

Can’t stand Ricks. He’s Barton Gellman (himself a derivative of Woodhoohooo) for the WARS.

64. diane - 27 February 2009

Madman (59)

..of course as we call the MADE ONES to task,..there are always those amongst us, every bit as hideous.as the MADE ONES…clumsily emulating and imitating their perfumed, or humvee colgned, lords…..awed (I say)…

But can they possibly master the releve or tourjete of a slim silverback such as Rahm ………………or the insane genius of the “painray” inventor…

65. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 February 2009

Red states consume more porn?

States where a majority of residents agreed with the statement “I have old-fashioned values about family and marriage,” bought 3.6 more subscriptions per thousand people than states where a majority disagreed. A similar difference emerged for the statement “AIDS might be God’s punishment for immoral sexual behaviour.”

66. BooHooHooMan - 27 February 2009

I know I’m beating a drum, here. But All of this moves by so fast. Few remember Citi’s central role in Enron. Or Stanley Fischers Dealings as Vice Chair. Before, of course he skipped to Israel. As head of their Central Bank. LOL. The results of which were swept under the rug, settled for pennies on the dollar, before the shit REALLY hit the fan. Along with the kind of municipal utilities and bond issue scams that Rendell is knee deep in…these guys, among shysters of all stripes- figured out long ago that As long as your willing to throw a few crumbs to the lesser mooks, and you do your misdeeds in a corporate/political environment–you can get away with anything. A few shekels and some bad press as the cost of doing business…

NYT- early 2008 re Enron/ Citi after years of litigation – all legal expenses written off, of course.

The settlements are the latest to address Citigroup’s troubles in the late 1990s and the early part of this decade when the bank seemed to trip from scandal to scandal. Citigroup paid or set aside billions of dollars to resolve several cases, like those involving WorldCom and Parmalat, and conflicts concerning analysts’ research. It also had a number of run-ins with regulators in other countries.

But for many, Enron defined the era. A cash cow for Wall Street, the energy company generated millions of dollars in underwriting and advisory fees before its downfall. Enron’s bankruptcy filing and the criminal and regulatory inquiries that followed put its advisers, like Wall Street banks, law firms and accountants, under harsh scrutiny.

Citigroup and JPMorgan Chase agreed in 2003 to pay nearly $300 million in fines and penalties to settle accusations by the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Manhattan district attorney’s office that the two banks had enabled Enron to misrepresent its true financial condition before its collapse.

67. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 February 2009

Early Morning Shooting Kills 2 Injures 3 in Miramar Beach

Residents in this Miramar Beach community are taking extra precautions after their neighbor allegedly went on a shooting rampage.

It began a little before 2:00 Thursday morning at these units of the Summer Lake Townhomes.

Walton County sheriff’s deputies arrived to find two people shot to death, 3 others critically injured.

Investigators say the suspect, 60-year-old Dannie Baker, left his townhouse, armed with a rifle, walked across the complex to the victims’ unit, and opened fire.

After the shooting witnesses saw Baker carrying a rifle though the pool area across the street to his home on the other side of the complex.

Authorities say he locked himself inside…and waited.

Walton, Okaloosa and Santa Rosa County sheriff’s deputies all responded.

When they rolled-in an armored special response vehicle around 6 in Thursday morning, Baker surrendered.

Michele Nicholson with the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office said “investigators are interviewing Dannie Baker, the suspect, to try to assert on why this happened but that’s the big question right now.”

Neighbors say baker wasn’t happy with all the activity at the house and think that was the motive for his shooting spree.

Neighbor Crystal Lynn says “he did come up to me one time and asked me if I was ready for the revolution to begin and if I had any immigrant in my house to get them out.”

The victims were foreign nationals who appear to have been working in the U.S. legally.

Investigators say, at the time of the shooting, there were at least 14 other people in the one unit with the victims…all of Hispanic descent.

Investigators are still trying to contact the victims’ families.

Sheriff Mike Adkinson says his team’s main focus is on the victims and the other people in the townhome who were traumatized by the event.

Adkinson said “there had never been an issue with the victims at the residents or anything of that nature. They were totally harmless and true victims of every sense of the word.”

68. marisacat - 27 February 2009

A few shekels and some bad press as the cost of doing business…

BINGO!

Do the crime, there will be no time.

69. BooHooHooMan - 27 February 2009

diane, “The only time I’d be worried…” LOL. I was only kiddin’. :D

When mcat was offline for a bit, I thought maybe a small meteorite crashed through to the Popcorn Coffers, igniting the precious sustenance, sending hot kernels flying, who knows…

(And Only half joking there, Perry Paranoia and all …)

70. diane - 27 February 2009

Marisa (63)

Re: Gellman

indeed…really fuckin slithery in the Angler – The Cheney Vice Presidency tome (483 pages, including index (where’s Al Gore when ya need him?), to ultimately, state his worship, of Dick Cheney, )

repeating myself here, just a seemingly small detail, yet filled with both arrogance and deceit, the hardback was out by the summer of 2008, yet he wrote the book as if it were 2009…BEFORE THE BAILOUT…and of course, before the Olympics, and all that sabre rattling,……and how many will look at the copyright date in the years to come……..

71. diane - 27 February 2009

BooHooHooMan (69)

I knew you were kiddin hon, just laughing at myself, by the way post 55 is fucking superb!

72. diane - 27 February 2009

71 (currently)

just saw a great one at 66 too BooHooHooMan….

thank you hon.

73. marisacat - 27 February 2009

units of the Summer Lake Townhomes.

hmm that just screams for being part of some great small film noir… like Blood Simple.

74. marisacat - 27 February 2009

hmm The news is saying Michigan unemployment is 10.6… due to car industry. (they say). Our nightmare is construction. (they say)

75. diane - 27 February 2009

..what are homes in some areas of Detroit now? $5?…pay to inhabit?

yes, do tell us about what you, and the repugdemrats before you, have marketed as “Jesus”, Obama? please explain to the Pakistanis, the Afghanis..Iraquis….Detroitia…. Appalachia, the astoundlingly earth rich, yet starved, CONGOLESE,…….child prostitutes in DC…….(how’s that kiddiegate justus goin?) ….et al…. your version of humanity and humility……………………..Obama?….Jesama?

76. marisacat - 27 February 2009

FWIW

Meet the Press: Secretary Gates. Roundtable: Harold Ford Jr., Mike Murphy, Dee Dee Myers, Joe Scarborough

Face the Nation: Emanuel

Fox News Sunday: Joint Chiefs of Staff Chair Mullen, Sen. Kyl, Rep. Ryan

This Week: Orszag, Rep. Cantor. Roundtable: Rove, Stan Greenberg, Katrina van den Heuvel, George Will

State of the Union: Admiral Mullen, Rep. Abercrombie, Suze Orman

77. diane - 27 February 2009

priceless:

Oh, God. (0.00 / 0)
Oakland in 2008 is the same as Alabame in 1955? Get a fucking clue.

by: gzodik @ Fri Feb 27, 2009 at 00:18:15 AM CST

[ Parent ] Actually (6.00 / 1)
Oakland looked a lot worse. Is that what you meant. As bad as Alabama was, and it was bad, the actual cops did not cuff people and shot them while they were on the ground unable to move(not in public anyway). Get a fucking clue yourself.

Where is my check kos?

“gzodik”…the bot you’ll learn to love as your wiser teacher! or die?..or just another idiot youth whose parents should have been there, instead of throwing money at them?

78. diane - 27 February 2009

77

sorry, the following was accidently snipped:

by: deedogg @ Fri Feb 27, 2009 at 08:56:23 AM CST
[ Parent | ]

——————————————————————————–

by: you @ soon
To post this comment click here:

Otherwise click cancel.

You must enter a subject for your comment

Shutting down BART | 51 comments

well, I don’t have a clue as to where this came from in the above paste; because it’s not visible on the page:

“by: you @ soon
To post this comment click here: ……… ”

but that’s the second time around, this time I’m just leaving it there

79. diane - 27 February 2009

79

..talk about subliminal…that must be “pacified”…and the [poison] Ivy League…yeah what fucking rot…by you….@@@@@@@@@@ SOOOOOOOOOOOOOON yeah, you can talk to yourself tooooooo, …..and preach to the choir toooooooooooooooooooooooo, the fun thing is..that humans…well what can one say….still water runs deep

80. marisacat - 27 February 2009

nu post…

LINK

……… :lol: …………

81. diane - 27 February 2009

wellll, was actually referring to 78 at 79

what duz a chicken do when ya breaks its neck Fagan?…….’e SQUAAACKS FAGAN HE SQUACCCCKS

and believe me I’m not talking about literally breaking physical necks or actually letting blood. although tis a might temptin!


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