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Monday…. 17 November 2008

Posted by marisacat in Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.


Fire Skies – Huntington Beach – California – Lachman/LAT




1. ms_xeno - 17 November 2008

Madman, in the last thread:

…Some people are starting to get it…

Not many I know. They’re all in the tearful, starry-eyed phase at this point. One person I know posted a photo of her tear-dotted glasses on Election Night to prove just how gosh-darn wonderful everything’s gonna’ be from now on. I’m serious.

Granted, the person in question is half my age, but sweet fucking jeebus.

mr_xeno grumbles all the time about how our Mayor is accelerating the “San Francisco-i-zation” of Portland;Meaning that the city is becoming increasingly hostile to the people it actually needs to really make it run. The foreclosure wave is finally hitting a lot of the local areas here, after being somewhat delayed. A local rag was very het up about this being ruinous to the lives of renters as well as homeowners: Nothing can protect a good renter if their landlord wouldn’t or couldn’t pay his/her bills. The same paper is also still caught up in the tear-stained glasses yay Obama mindset.

People just won’t put two and two together;Wherever this uprising will come from, it won’t be from Prog Mecca towns like this one. I’d bank on it.

Oh, and hey, I got laid off on Friday. Wheeee… Let the merry-go-round resume its merry spin.

We’ll be back on the East Coast couch-surfing with one or both sets of parents if things don’t seriously turn around in a fucking year.

Go fuck yourself, Mayor Adams. You, too, Golden Man. >:

2. marisacat - 17 November 2008

oh ms_xeno

I am so sorry to hear of the mess… not Portland (sounds like the town got in line for bad decisions) but the job mess. Kitties need shoes and kibble… humans need bottles of Spanish and Australian wine… and regular paychecks.

Agree… no uprising, such as ever may be possible, will come from the blissed out libs.

3. marisacat - 17 November 2008

PS… my favorite of the blissed was a woman in Grant Park that night who said the world would be healed in three months. [She might have said “nation” but i bet she meant The Whirled.]


4. marisacat - 17 November 2008

Democracy NOW!:

AMY GOODMAN: There you have President-elect Barack Obama saying he’s going to close Guantanamo and make sure the US doesn’t torture.

MICHAEL RATNER [president of the Center for Constitutional Rights and author of “The Trial of Donald Rumsfeld: A Prosecution by Book]:

Well, obviously, I mean, we at the Center represent scores of Guantanamo people, scores of people who have been tortured. And, of course, this is a very, very important statement. I mean, this is a shift. This is someone who I now believe will close Guantanamo and I hope will apply the anti-torture rules to not just the military, but to the CIA and everybody else. So that’s actually very positive.

The negative part is really what we’ve seen come out, floated by ostensibly members of the transition team and others, which are two issues. I called it re-wrapping Guantanamo to make it more palatable, not at Gauntanamo, but maybe here. One is preventive detention, and the other is national security courts. And they work together. If you really look at what Guantanamo was, it’s essentially a preventive detention facility where the United States really tried to give people no legal rights to challenge that preventive detention. Finally, we got into federal court, etc. That’s what it represents: preventive detention and bad, bad court review. So what you see in these new proposals, which are really from—they’re being floated slowly, maybe they’re from academics, they’re from transition people, saying we may need a preventive detention scheme, which is incredible to me. I mean, we’ve have 200 years of a country and never had to have a preventive detention scheme.

The righties have been having a lot of fun for several days as the positions shift. They feel Ob will end up much closer to their own positions. Oh I am so shocked. Shocked.

IIRC Ratner is the guy who pursued several of the administration (Rumsfeld and others) in the German courts.. he may have filed elsewhere, for get now…

So what you’re really seeing is a re-wrapping of Guantanamo in a legal—in a legal new paper to make it more palatable. I hope that doesn’t happen. I hope there’s huge objections. The idea that this country would go into a preventive detention at this point and special courts, after we’ve been litigating for years to say these people have a right to get into a federal court and we shouldn’t have a preventive detention scheme, is remarkable to me. And I would just—I would really think that while it’s great that he wants to close Guantanamo and end torture, I mean, to set up an alternate scheme is really un-American.

Works for me, as argument.

5. liberalcatnip - 17 November 2008

**air kisses**

(and cheesecake for ms x)

6. marisacat - 17 November 2008

I see Citi NOW says 52, 000 jobs. Anyone for a 60K layoff coming up?

7. liberalcatnip - 17 November 2008

Actually, Citigroup job cull to hit 75,000

I haven’t watched cable news for 3 days now and this is my first chance to check out the news online. That was the first story that popped up. Yikes.

8. marisacat - 17 November 2008

Sully may have outdone himself….

Actually, black dandy, feminized midgets need to express more homophobia than most.

Then again, apparently so has Prince… the object of the above description. I had no idea Prince had converted to Jehovah’s Witnesses, nor that he was quite this nutty.

[S]o here’s how it is: you’ve got the Republicans, and basically they want to live according to this.” He pointed to a Bible. “But there’s the problem of interpretation, and you’ve got some churches, some people, basically doing things and saying it comes from here, but it doesn’t. And then on the opposite end of the spectrum you’ve got blue, you’ve got the Democrats, and they’re, like, ‘You can do whatever you want.’ Gay marriage, whatever. But neither of them is right.”

When asked about his perspective on social issues—gay marriage, abortion—Prince tapped his Bible and said, “God came to earth and saw people sticking it wherever and doing it with whatever, and he just cleared it all out. He was, like, ‘Enough.’ ” ::snip::

9. marisacat - 17 November 2008


I do not think expansively enough. Clearly.

10. marisacat - 17 November 2008


Lieberman to stay put?

Posted: Monday, November 17, 2008 5:13 PM by Mark Murray
Filed Under: Congress, Democrats

From NBC’s Ken Strickland

Tomorrow, Senate Democrats gather to decide if Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-D) should keep his position as chairman of Homeland Security Committee, and it looks like he just may. Several Democrats and Democratic-leaning groups were calling for Lieberman to stripped of his chairmanship for not only supporting John McCain’s candidacy for president — but also criticizing Barack Obama in the process.

According to sources familiar with negotiations, Democrats are expected to vote in favor of letting the Connecticut senator keep his chairmanship and seniority, but give up the gavel on a subcommittee he chairs. The vote happens tomorrow morning by secret ballot.

The tide turned in Lieberman’s favor, sources say, after two events in recent weeks. First, President-elect Obama told Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid that he wanted Lieberman to stay in the Democratic caucus. Later, in a meeting with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Lieberman told him it would be “unacceptable” for him to give up his gavel. That was considered by some as a veiled threat that Lieberman would jump to caucus with Republicans if he was forced to give up the gavel.

Obama tipped the scales in Lieberman’s favor, one source said. The source essentially explained it like this: If the wrath was directed at Obama and got over it, shouldn’t the Democratic caucus do the same?

11. Madman in the Marketplace - 17 November 2008

1 – a couple of my friends who’re fans o’ Teh One are already pretty upset about the people he’s surrounding himself yet. Sunday morning, the first thing I heard when I picked up the phone was, “yes, I know you warned me.”

12. marisacat - 17 November 2008

LOL The “change” was IMO always about KA-CHING. Now and later.

I laughed pretty hard when ti was late on a Friday (as if that helps) released that the Clintons had amassed 109 million (which of course is just what appears on the books, not skim from the Foundation and the boondocks Library…). LOL.. Of course the Obamas looked at each other and mentally racked the numbers. Obama can steal the Africa game post WH if he wishes. Edge Bill out of it.

Biden can do joke books. Jill can write “I married a Joke” books.

They will wring the cash out of the endeavor somehow.

13. marisacat - 17 November 2008

YOu have to laugh.. the last graf of a NYT editorial today on bailout and Paulson:

Over the next two months, Mr. Paulson must impose some coherence and clarity on the bailout. Otherwise he will only fan anxieties and mistrust, which will undermine the effectiveness of his good decisions and amplify the fallout of his bad ones. With markets gyrating wildly, and the economy deteriorating rapidly, the nation needs clear leadership and a sound plan.


What a stupid mess. And the editorial just softballs all over the place.

I heard Nina Totenberg over the weekend.. I am not a fan but she said, “it turns out Paulson has no idea what he is doing”.

A little clarity.

14. Madman in the Marketplace - 17 November 2008

Brown, Prop. 8 forces urge court to hear suits that would toss measure

The likelihood of a final California Supreme Court showdown over same-sex marriage increased dramatically Monday when Attorney General Jerry Brown and the pro-Proposition 8 campaign urged the justices to decide whether the voter-approved ballot measure is constitutional.

Both Brown, the state government’s top lawyer, and the Protect Marriage campaign organization plan to defend Prop. 8, which would write a ban on same-sex marriage into the state Constitution. In separate filings Monday, the liberal attorney general and the conservative sponsors of the initiative gave similar reasons for asking the court to review lawsuits filed by the measure’s opponents.

“There is significant public interest in prompt resolution of the legality of Proposition 8. This court can provide certainty and finality in this matter,” Deputy Attorney General Mark Benington said in court papers.

Andrew Pugno, lawyer for Protect Marriage, said, “The people have a right to know as quickly as possible the status of marriage under the California Constitution.” He said he was confident that the court will uphold Prop. 8.

However, the Campaign for California Families, another conservative religious organization that supported the measure, asked the court to dismiss the suits without a hearing. The group’s lawyer said overturning Prop. 8 “would wreak havoc on the democratic process.”

The court could decide at its weekly conference Wednesday whether to accept the suits for review and whether to issue a stay that would block enforcement of Prop. 8 until a ruling. A stay would restore authority for gay and lesbian couples to marry, although those marriages – like an estimated 18,000 same-sex weddings performed before the Nov. 4 election – would have an uncertain status until the court cleared up Prop. 8’s legality and scope.

15. NYCO - 17 November 2008

Another story on the Syracuse hate crime murder victim (birth name Moses Cannon): local media has now started referring to him as Latiesha Green (the name everyone called him by):


I am waiting to see if the local D.A. prosecutes it as a hate crime. (Because frankly I find him to be a bit of a misogynist and wonder if that extends to transgender women.)

16. marisacat - 17 November 2008


I sent an email to the addy that uses your last name.. if you have a larger version of the pic that the cat contest used (I registered to vote for her, she is so sweet!) I will post it…

Just if it easy, at hand and easy to send…

where.is.the.cat at gmail dot com

17. marisacat - 17 November 2008

BTW when I was hunting for Gwen Araujo yesteday I found this very up to date piece. With a few horror stories that prove it has to be marriage or civil unions for all, no gender division, two persons, the way the CA constitution was originally written and why the CA SC made the ruling they did…. And why transgendered have to be included in legislation, no matter what anyone says.

San Jose activist Dana Rivers agrees. “There’s a persistent reticence to include transgender people in lesbian, gay and bisexual politics. We create an observable difference – it’s harder to hide us. And so much of the gay movement is drawing great strength from a middle of the road, ‘I’m-just-like-you, straight-person’ approach.”

The passage of New York’s bill may portend a similar battle on a national scale. The Human Rights Campaign, the most powerful gay lobby in the country, has for years been at the fore of the struggle to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, a federal bill that provides protection from discrimination based on sexual orientation but not gender identity or expression.

Such bills force transgender people and their allies into an impossible choice: support a bill that excludes them, or oppose a bill that will advance the civil rights of lesbians, gay men and bisexuals. It’s a choice they should not have to make.

Leave it to Europeans, however, to put to shame this slow, piecemeal approach to transgender rights and the strife that along goes with it.

Last month Great Britain passed a law granting a panoply of rights to transsexuals, allowing them to marry, change their birth certificates, and be legally recognized as their chosen gender. Current law on transgender rights in Britain was shown to fall “far short of the standards for human dignity and human freedom in the 21st century.”

“If democracies are measured by how they treat their minorities,” said Minister Rosie Winterton, “then I believe it is absolutely right that the 5,000-strong transsexual community be afforded the same rights enjoyed by the other millions of us in the UK.”

America, are you listening?

I did not realise GB has made that move forward.

18. Madman in the Marketplace - 17 November 2008

Turley: Speculation Builds that Guantanamo Bay Prison Will Be Closed While Obama Advisers Start to Lower Expectations on Investigations

Advisers reportedly have drafted a plan to close the Guantanamo Bay facility. However, there remains speculation as to the details and the willingness of the Obama administration to pursue criminal allegations of torture and possible war crimes. Democrats are floating a trial balloon of another commission to see if supporters would be satisfied with a “study only” approach that did not involve actual criminal investigation components.

We have already seen many professors who criticized the Bush Administration start to caution against taking a “purist” approach. That is a bad sign, since the “pragmatic approach” generally means a policy driven more by politics and principle.

No surprise, of course, to those who have been paying attention.

19. Madman in the Marketplace - 17 November 2008

Why the Economy Grows Like Crazy Amid High Taxes

Why do high taxes create a stronger economy?

I used to run a small business — a commercial film production company.

Every time we took a dollar out as personal income, it instantly turned into 50 cents.

If we didn’t really need the money, that was an incentive to keep it in the company and to find ways to spend it that took it out of the taxable profit column but increased the value of the company.

High taxes create an incentive to reinvest profits into long-term growth.

With high taxes, the only way to retain the bulk of the wealth created by a business is by reinvesting it in the business — in plants, equipment, staff, research and development, new products and all the rest.

The higher taxes are (and from 1940 to 1964 the top rates were around 90 percent), the more this is true.

This creates a bias toward long-term planning.

If a business is planning for the long term, it wants a happy, stable work force. It becomes worthwhile to pay good wages and offer decent benefits.

Low taxes create an incentive for profit taking.

It is easy to confuse profitability with wealth creation.

They are not the same.

President Eisenhower built the interstate highway system. There is no doubt that this gave the country an asset of great value, one that was very productive. It created great “wealth.” But, aside from the construction companies that contracted the work, it was not profitable.

Selling subprime mortgages, trading in derivatives, packaging mortgage-backed securities and “flipping” condos were all very profitable but did not create wealth.

The theory is that if the rich can keep their money, they will invest in businesses that create jobs, more businesses, more tax revenue and greater “wealth” for the nation.

That sounds like logic and common sense. But is it, in practice, what happened?

Once tax cutting began, the culture of business changed.

It was no longer enough for a business to be a reasonably good business, making steady, reliable profits.

Indeed, that became a very bad condition for a business to be in. It made it a target for takeovers by people who were willing to milk them of their profits.

20. Madman in the Marketplace - 17 November 2008

GM Must Remake the Mass Transit System It Murdered

But there is also a trillion-dollar skeleton in GM’s closet.

This is the company that murdered our mass transit system.

The assertion comes from Bradford Snell, a government researcher whose definitive report damning GM has been a vehicular lightening rod since its 1974 debut. Its attackers and defenders are legion. But some facts are irrefutable:

In a 1922 memo that will live in infamy, GM President Alfred P. Sloan established a unit aimed at dumping electrified mass transit in favor of gas-burning cars, trucks and buses.

Just one American family in 10 then owned an automobile. Instead, we loved our 44,000 miles of passenger rail routes managed by 1,200 companies employing 300,000 Americans who ran 15 billion annual trips generating an income of $1 billion. According to Snell, “virtually every city and town in America of more than 2,500 people had its own electric rail system.”

But GM lost $65 million in 1921. So Sloan enlisted Standard Oil (now Exxon), Philips Petroleum, glass and rubber companies and an army of financiers and politicians to kill mass transit.

The campaigns varied, as did the economic and technical health of many of the systems themselves. Some now argue that buses would have transcended many of the rail lines anyway. More likely, they would have hybridized and complemented each other.

But with a varied arsenal of political and financial subterfuges, GM helped gut the core of America’s train and trolley systems. It was the murder of our rail systems that made our “love affair” with the car a tragedy of necessity.

In 1949 a complex federal prosecution for related crimes resulted in an anti-trust fine against GM of a whopping $5000. For years thereafter GM continued to bury electric rail systems by “bustituting” gas-fired vehicles.

21. marisacat - 17 November 2008

The Glorious Twentieth Century…

22. marisacat - 17 November 2008

LOL One of the pet peeves in the house when I was growing up was the big smack down of early electric cars and later transportation systems. This is a good link, too.

[Y]es. In the 1890s, most of the original automobiles were smooth-running, quiet, environmentally friendly electric vehicles powered by lead batteries. Thousands of such vehicles traversed our city streets and even the back roads of rural America. How we regressed from electric to oil is a complex story rooted in corruption and control. Here’s the short version: During the first years of the 20th century, the electric vehicle people were “the bad guys” in America. The key players were the Pope Manufacturing Company in Hartford–which had secured a monopoly on the bicycle industry; the Electric Vehicle Company in New York and Philadelphia, which controlled a monopoly on batteries; and a small group of powerful carmakers such as Olds and Packard. Together, they created an automobile cartel that tried to dictate who could and could not buy and sell a car in America–and what kind of car. These monopolists acquired a primitive automobile patent called the “Selden Patent,” designed from the outset to be used as a patent litigation weapon. Armed with this patent, the cartel threatened to file an expensive patent infringement case and injunction against every American who purchased an inexpensive internal combustion car that the “Selden Trust” did not authorize. At the same time, the cartel allowed its own technologically superior electric vehicles to falter in the marketplace in favor of high-priced, extremely profitable gasoline-burning cars designed for the moneyed elite. Remember, this was before mass production; each car was hand-built. Oil, especially oil from the Mideast, was very cheap, much cheaper than a lead battery. What’s more, supply and demand of oil could be manipulated, yielding billion-dollar profits.::snip::

LOL “Free market” my skinny ass. And they ALL keep the corrupt fictions going…

And this:

Yet at the time, much of America’s mass transit ran on electricity. What happened to those systems?

In the 1930s and ’40s, General Motors, the Firestone Tire Company, Mack Truck, Phillips Petroleum, and Standard Oil of California–all operating through a front company called National City Lines (NCL)–bought up dozens of local mass-transit systems that were operating the popular electric streetcars. Their plan was to control virtually all the leading mass-transit systems in America, and replace electric trolleys with smoky, gas-guzzling buses. In many cases, these trolley transit companies had previously been financially looted by their financier owners and fallen into disrepair, which only made them easier targets for acquisition. Once NCL purchased the trolley lines with “borrowed” money from GM and others, the tracks were torn up and the trolleys sold or destroyed, replaced by petroleum-powered GM buses running on tires and oil supplied by the NCL companies.

NCL started with small cities in Illinois and Texas. Within several years, the company managed to devastate or destroy the trolley systems in some 40 cities, including Baltimore, Tampa, Los Angeles, Oakland, and Salt Lake City. Then, in the years that followed, the badly managed NCL bus companies disappeared as well, leaving no mass transit and, in many cases, no alternative means of transportation other than individual automobiles.

“Free market”.

23. liberalcatnip - 17 November 2008

I have more than a little bit of a problem with this: Obama advisers: No charges likely vs interrogators

Obama’s a constitutional lawyer, ffs.

Not that I didn’t know he’d bow down using the “oh that’s ancient history now” excuse but damn – what does that say about his morality? And what kind of precedent does that set? Or maybe he prefers having the absolute type of power that Bush & Cheney had.

24. marisacat - 17 November 2008

Stuart Taylor in Newsweek

[T]hey also want him immediately to abolish—not just move —the system of detention-without-charges that Guantánamo represents.

Obama should not be stampeded into taking those steps without careful deliberation. (Voters won’t rush him. Only 29 percent of respondents in a recent Quinnipiac poll favored closing the prison; 44 percent were opposed.) Both policy and politics argue against deciding whether to ban moderately coercive methods until Obama and his subordinates have had time to study the disputed evidence on the effectiveness of these techniques—and until the president has sought bipartisan support (including that of John McCain) in Congress.::snip::

25. marisacat - 18 November 2008

via the Guardian … tho Josh Marshall says he does not trust it. Nor UK papers on American politics. He then went on to say he has heard it is nearing a done deal. LOL (Who are these people?)

Hillary Clinton plans to accept the job of secretary of state offered by Barack Obama, who is reaching out to former rivals to build a broad coalition administration, the Guardian has learned.

Obama’s advisers have begun looking into Bill Clinton’s foundation, which distributes millions of dollars to Africa to help with development, to ensure that there is no conflict of interest. But Democrats do not believe that the vetting is likely to be a problem.

26. bayprairie - 18 November 2008

im very sorry to hear about the job loss ms_xeno. i know it must be traumatic for you. hang in there.

27. marisacat - 18 November 2008

Bacevich interveiwed by Hedges – on some sort of book salon on Fire Dog Lake… via The Washington Note, Clemons posts the vid as well….

[W]hether Obama will embrace or junk the Global War on Terror as the organizing principle of US national security policy is certainly one of the $64 questions of the next six months. [please, Ob has said over and over, he buys in fully — Mcat]

The repudiation of the Iraq War that was at the center of his campaign early on made me hopeful that he’d junk the entire Bush approach to foreign policy.

Of late, I’m less hopeful — the promises to send more troops to Afghanistan strike me as simple-minded at best, more likely outright stupid. [clap clap clap — Mcat]


I’ve come to believe that American Exceptionalism is the root of all evils.

Once you decide that you’re God’s new Chosen People, self-awareness becomes very difficult.

We need to shed our sense of uniqueness and our sense of entitlement. We need to become a normal nation.

Of course, that’s akin to saying that we should abandon our identity — which isn’t likely to happen.


If Obama persists in the GWOT — persistence is likely to mean gradual draw-down from Iraq combined with an intensified military effort in Afghanistan / Pakistan — then collapse will come when the army and the Marine Corps finally fall apart. That this has not already occurred is a tribute to the remarkable durability of the force. But that durability has limits. Once the services begin to deteriorate, the GWOT will be unsustainable.


Advice on Afghanistan: pay attention to history. ::snip::

B goes on to list some indicators of collapse in the services.

Unless Bacevich wants to help prop up Ob, he should be speaking more forcefully and clearly by SUMMER. [Along those lines he takes harsh and justified hits at Petraeus and Rice]

28. NYCO - 18 November 2008

16. Thanks, I am hunting around for the larger photo…

29. NYCO - 18 November 2008

Sorry to hear about that, ms_xeno. I hope you don’t have to move if you don’t want to.

I wonder how many people will be returning to their Places of Origin to “couch surf” with Mom and Dad within a year. I think that sort of reverse migration has the possibility of really shaking things up in some of those moribund areas (like mine…) I would welcome it, even though it doesn’t occur under the best of circumstances.

I wrote on it about a year ago.

30. marisacat - 18 November 2008

Maybe this is the reason fro the reports yesterday from the WH that Paulson was grandly going to leave half of the 700 million for th eincoming admin to worry itself over. Fucking hell.

The Dems too dead on arrival to do what Inhofe is doing?

From Sirota:

Remember when Doris Kearns Goodwin and the rest of the elite media socialites took to the studios of Charlie Rose’s show to portray the opponents of the bailout as wild-eyed leftists? Seems there’s some serious bipartisan pushback going on.

Washington – US Sen. Jim Inhofe said Saturday that Congress was not told the truth about the bailout of the nation’s financial system and should take back what is left of the $700 billion “blank check” it gave the Bush administration.

“It is just outrageous that the American people don’t know that Congress doesn’t know how much money he (Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson) has given away to anyone,” the Oklahoma Republican told the Tulsa World.

“It could be to his friends. It could be to anybody else. We don’t know. There is no way of knowing.” […]

Inhofe will likely find an ally in Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), who issued this press release this morning:

WASHINGTON, November 17 – Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said today he will introduce legislation to stop the release of a $350-billion second round of the Wall Street bailout.

Sanders, who voted against the $700-billion package Congress approved in October, said he has serious concerns about how the Bush administration and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson are spending the bailout money that was already released. He also said it was unacceptable that the oversight provisions in the bill were ignored.

31. marisacat - 18 November 2008

It’s official, Lieberman stays and keeps his Chair of Homeland Security.. or whatever we call it.

Brave New Democrats. Brave New Ob and Knob. Are the oceans receding yet? hmmm?

32. ms_xeno - 18 November 2008

Ah, Mcat, NYCO, Catnip, etc. thanks.

Thing is, I think mr_xeno is out of his mind to think that we’re going to accomplish much by pulling up roots and going back East. It’s true that in parts of PA real estate is cheaper than here– it’s just everything else that’s more expensive: Property taxes, fuel, blah blah blah. To say nothing of what happens to your health coverage when you move elsewhere and mysteriously find that no local carriers want to take you on. Fuck.

Besides, I was here first. Let all the annoyingly starry-eyed, freshly-arrived twenty-year-olds and their Obama t-shirts and their stern lectures about how coffee from an airpot is inferior go the fuck back East. They’ve got less stuff to move than I do, not to mention a better shot at buying coverage. Nyah.

33. bayprairie - 18 November 2008


i think the democratics should switch to the jellyfish as the symbol for their party.

less spine! more fitting!

34. lucid - 18 November 2008

Ms x – if you end up back in the neighborhood, I could always off up the studio floor for a period.

In an unrelated note, for anyone in the area, I’m throwing another benefit tomorrow night for Just Food. It’s at the Delancey at 168 Delancey St. Doors open at 7:30. Great slate of bands. Mine plays at 11.

35. lucid - 18 November 2008

The Glorious Twentieth Century… ah.. the ‘American Century’ .

36. lucid - 18 November 2008

oh, drat, I copied the img srch related to a puking emoticon in that last comment and it didn’t show…

37. marisacat - 18 November 2008

aemd posted a link months ago for smilies for WP… but I lost it when I had to reboot the whole hard drive.

Wonder if skype emoticons work (I am googling to find what emoticons do work in WP):


38. marisacat - 18 November 2008

well that did not work… 😉

39. marisacat - 18 November 2008

Here is a list of WP emoticons… sorry no vomitus there… 😯


40. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 November 2008

Besides, I was here first. Let all the annoyingly starry-eyed, freshly-arrived twenty-year-olds and their Obama t-shirts and their stern lectures about how coffee from an airpot is inferior go the fuck back East.

You and Nico Case should kick their asses.

41. lucid - 18 November 2008

37 – mine was one of those action emoticons – it started yellow, turned green and threw up…

42. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 November 2008

a friend sent me this:

Vice President Cheney indicted by Willacy County grand jury

A Willacy County grand jury under District Attorney Juan Angel Guerra returned multi-count indictments Monday against Vice President Dick Cheney, former U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, plus several other public officials.

The indictment accuses Cheney and Gonzales of engaging in organized criminal activity. It criticizes Cheney’s investment in the Vanguard Group, which holds interests in the private prison companies running the federal detention centers. It accuses Cheney of a conflict of interest and “at least misdemeanor assaults” on detainees by working through the prison companies.

Gonzales is accused of using his position while in office to stop an investigation into abuses at the federal detention centers.

Another indictment charges state Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr. with profiting from his public office by accepting honoraria from prison management companies.

Also indicted are state District Judges Janet Leal, state District Judge Migdalia Lopez, The GEO Group (formerly Wackenhut Corporation), former U.S. Attorney Mervyn Mosbacher, Gus Garza and Gilberto Lozano.

They all face a stream of criminal charges including abuse of office, profiting from office, and murder.

43. lucid - 18 November 2008

And can anyone explain to me why all the concern on the Automaker’s bailout is about those ‘huge’ union contracts that actually helped build the American middle class? Perhaps we should start talking about those bloated 7 figure pundit salaries that make advertising rates so high…

44. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 November 2008

my big problem w/ the unions was that they helped kill single payer healthcare to maintain healthcare as a bargaining point. Oh, and that a lot of union members (like my uncles) are Reagan donks.

Other than that, I have problems w/ the bailouts b/c it doesn’t seem that there is any interest in demanding anything from the corps or any movement toward canning a management that has resisted change and made shitty choices for decades.

45. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 November 2008

Merrill Lynch Needs a Dressing Down

The Wall Street Journal, Friday November 14th, reports on “culture clashes” between the brokers of Merrill Lynch and the bank that bought them, Bank of America. As the article portrays it, the values of Wall Street are coming in conflict with those of Main Street. “Merrill staffers joke that Bank of America employees are recognizable in the elevators by their less expensive attire and American-flag lapel pins.”

Merrill Lynch is bullish on snobbery and status. These snobs, wearing more expensive suits, consorted to run their company into the ground. Now they look down on the company that rescued them and the people who work there as not being worthy, not sharing their own high status. It’s another sign that failure will not humble Wall Street or cause them to change their ways. It’s also a bad sign for Bank of America of the difficulty of getting these dandies to do an honest day’s work.

These are the good people we’re helping bail out and they look down their noses at the rest of us. It bothers me that we’re providing welfare payments to people who fly first-class, stay in five-star hotels, eat in expensive restaurants, watch sports in skyboxes and travel in limos more frequently than rock stars, all the while being impeccably dressed in the classic fashion. It just makes me want to rise up out of my seat in coach, walk to the front of the plane and grab one of them by their silk tie. I want to scream: “Get out here, you bum. I know you’re not the one paying for this.” I’d half-expect them to defend themselves by saying “Hank Paulson said I could sit here.”

The bare truth is that they have lived this lifestyle by taking people’s money in return for worthless advice. Their specialty is knowing what’s good for themselves, not understanding what’s happening in the market.

46. marisacat - 18 November 2008

well I think restricting the running drivel on Detroit bail out to “the unions” and THEIR “expensive contracts” (but no other loser business decisions) is one way to avoid any conversation AT ALL of the nearly 100 year mess we are in.

The UAW did it! Waaaah! Those pensions! waaaah!

And it certainly avoids all of the business decisions that the auto companies made that had nothing to do with the unions.

47. marisacat - 18 November 2008

btw, I could care less if Obama picks Holder as AG… however ABC tonight said he was instrumental in the pick of Biden.

Needs to wear a little lapel pin, “I helped pick the joke”.

48. lucid - 18 November 2008

44 – while that is true, the American industrial midwestern middle class was built by unions fighting for a living wage. When I see Robert Reich talking about how all new employees coming in are making what people are paid at Nissan plants and that god awful anchor on CNN clamoring on about ‘the problem legacies’, it really makes me want to vomit. Like either of those two has ever worked a day in their life for to justify their ridiculous wealth.

49. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 November 2008

IOZ on the donks and Holy Joe

Needs to wear a little lapel pin, “I helped pick the joke”.

not to mention helping pardon Marc Rich … sounds like a pretty smart guy!

50. marisacat - 18 November 2008

Marc Rich and he as involved in the Great Thanksgiving Tale of Elian in FL.

Apparently the son of Barbadian immigrant parents. LOL Our favorite kind of black, arriving from offshore.

51. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 November 2008

50 – he and Colin Powell can trade stories about how to carry water for the Man.

52. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 November 2008

more on the Cheney indictment … interesting weirdness.

The indictment, which had not yet been signed by the presiding judge, was one of seven released Tuesday in a county that has been a source of bizarre legal and political battles in recent years. Another of the indictments named a state senator on charges of profiting from his position.

Willacy County District Attorney Juan Angel Guerra himself had been under indictment for more than a year and half before a judge dismissed the indictments last month. This flurry of charges came in the twilight of Guerra’s tenure, which ends this year after nearly two decades in office. He lost convincingly in a Democratic primary in March.

Cheney’s indictment on a charge of engaging in an organized criminal activity criticizes the vice president’s investment in the Vanguard Group, which holds interests in the private prison companies running the federal detention centers. It accuses Cheney of a conflict of interest and “at least misdemeanor assaults” on detainees because of his link to the prison companies.

Megan Mitchell, a spokeswoman for Cheney, declined to comment on Tuesday, saying that the vice president had not yet received a copy of the indictment.

The indictment accuses Gonzales of using his position while in office to stop an investigation in 2006 into abuses at one of the privately-run prisons.

Gonzalez’s attorney, George Terwilliger III, said in a written statement, “This is obviously a bogus charge on its face, as any good prosecutor can recognize. Hopefully, competent Texas authorities will take steps to reign in this abuse of the criminal justice system.”

Willacy County has become a prison hub with county, state and federal lockups. Guerra has gone after the prison-politician nexus before, extracting guilty pleas from three former Willacy and Webb county commissioners after investigating bribery related to federal prison contacts.

53. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 November 2008

Will the US government or the mainstream media finally acknowledgethe slaughter of Iraqis by the US military?

I recently received a set of questions from Le Monde Diplomatique reporter Kim Bredesen about the 2007 Project Censored story regarding 1,000,000 Iraqi deaths due to the U.S. invasion and war. The questions and answers are, I think, useful in framing both the untold story of the slaughter in Iraq and the failure of the U.S. media to report on its extend or on U.S. culpability for it.

I observed recently that your story on Iraqi deaths caused by US >> occupation became story no.1 in this year’s listing by Project Censored. I wondered if I could ask you a few questions on e-mail regarding this issue?


Kim Bredesen, Le Monde diplomatiqe (Norway)

I found this question/answer interesting:

4.The journalist Joshua Holland compare the mass killings in Iraq with Pol Pot’s genocide in Cambodia. Is this an accurate comparison in your opinion?

Holland’s purpose in this comparison is the same as my purpose in comparing the deaths in Iraq to those in Darfur: we are trying to give people a sense of the scale of the violence wrought in Iraq by the U.S. military. The mass murders in Cambodia under Pol Pot and the displacements and genocide in Darfur–as well as so many other recent and more distant instances of such violence–all have different sources, intentions, and outcomes from the Iraq violence and from each other. The point of making these comparisons is to point out the magnitude of the slaughter in Iraq, not to make analytic comments about the dynamics of the war.

and this

5. Do you believe it is appropriate that the Bush-administration should face trial for their actions?

In “The Fog of War,” former U.S. Secretary of Defense McNamara said to the camera that if the U.S. had lost World War II, then he and other American leaders would have stood trial as war criminals for the terrorist fire bombings of Japanese and German cities by the U.S. air force. Certainly the actions of U.S. political leaders and military commanders in ordering their troops to attack civilian targets in Iraq (for example the destruction of the city of Falluja—well publicized everywhere in the world except in the United States) fall under the same definition of war crimes that McNamara was considering in making this statement, and so it would be perfectly appropriate for Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Powell, and the various commanding generals to stand trial for these actions.

But take note that McNamara said that trials would have taken place if the U.S. had “lost.” This statement has actually turned out to be a kind of half truth. In World War II, the Japanese and Germans certainly lost, but only a relative handful of those responsible for their war crimes stood trial (the Japanese Emperor, for example, was actually restored to his throne). In the Vietnam War, most observers say that the U.S. “lost” the war, but no U.S. leaders stood trial for the many war crimes they committed during that long conflict. There is no predicting the future, but I expect that, no matter how the Iraq war ends–with either McCain’s “victory” or with the “defeat” that President Bush has repeatedly warned the U.S. citizens about—there will be no war crimes trials of U.S. political and military leadership.

I’m pretty sure the Obama admin won’t do shit about it. I keep dreaming that Kissinger will be on a plane that gets forced to land in Spain due to weather or something … but other than a “lucky” happenstance like that, Kissinger facing justice just isn’t going to happen.

54. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 November 2008
55. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 November 2008


As Senate Democrats this morning prepare to reward Joe Lieberman with the powerful Chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee, the most commonly recited claim — both with regard to the Lieberman issue and Washington more generally — is that Barack Obama’s campaign to “change” Washington requires, first and foremost, an end to partisan bickering and a renewal of bipartisanship. As but one of countless examples, Steny Hoyer told The Hill yesterday “that bipartisanship will be a priority” and the 33 new Democratic members of Congress “were elected on promises of bipartisanship.” In The Atlantic, Ronald Brownstein complains about “escalating partisan conflict” and “hyper-partisanship” and claims that “American politics has been polarized as sharply as at any point in the past century.”

Whatever else one might want to say about “bipartisanship,” there is nothing new about it. By definition, it does not remotely constitute “change.” To the contrary, the last eight years have been defined, more than anything else, by overarching bipartisan cooperation and consensus.

Where is the evidence of the supposed partisan wrangling that we hear so much about? Just examine the question dispassionately. Look at every major Bush initiative, every controversial signature Bush policy over the last eight years, and one finds virtually nothing but massive bipartisan support for them — the Patriot Act (original enactment and its renewal); the invasion of Afghanistan; the attack on, and ongoing occupation of, Iraq; the Military Commissions Act (authorizing enhanced interrogation techniques, abolishing habeas corpus, and immunizing war criminals); expansions of warrantless eavesdropping and telecom immunity; declaring part of Iran’s government to be “terrorists”; our one-sided policy toward Israel; the $700 billion bailout; The No Child Left Behind Act, “bankruptcy reform,” and on and on.

Most of those were all enacted with virtually unanimous GOP support and substantial, sometimes overwhelming, Democratic support: the very definition of “bipartisanship.” That’s just a fact.

Moreover, Bush’s appointments of judges were barely ever impeded, resulting in a radical transformation of the federal courts. Other than John Bolton and Steven Bradbury, not a single significant Bush nominee was blocked. Those who implemented Bush’s NSA program (Michael Hayden) and authorized his torture program (Alberto Gonzales) were confirmed for promotions. The Bush administration committed war crimes, broke long-standing surveillance laws, politicized prosecutions, and explicitly claimed the right to break our laws, yet Congress did nothing about any of that except to authorize most of it, and investigated virtually none of it. With regard to many of those transgressions, key Democratic leaders were briefed at the time they were implemented and quietly acquiesced, did nothing to stop any of it. Both parties are in virtually unanimous agreement that our highest political leaders should be exempt from accountability under the rule of law even for the grave crimes that have been committed.

Interesting to see that Greenwald seems to have suddenly woken up.

56. CSTAR - 18 November 2008

Re 20

A perfect example of this was the destruction of the twin cities streetcar system (see wikipedia for a nice history of the system)

57. marisacat - 18 November 2008

hmm from owen paine over at SMBIVA….

You may ask me: “Owen, what the geek does this mean to imply?” After feeding these numbers through my own special parametered virtual job multiplier, I take it to imply that if we hold all else in a paralytic grip, then we’re in for a ride past 15% unemployment before the sun rises once again over America.

well but… Cockburn over the weekend had a post up that puts unemployment at 15% if one wipes out numbers hedge games. In the seventies when we got hit hard, a friend of mine said internally (she worked in social welfare) they put CA unemployment numbers at 12%, overall, which was several pts above the publicly discussed number.

Owen has a good nickname for Krugman… lol along the way.

Auntie Paul of Krugspielenschaft

58. marisacat - 18 November 2008

Kool-aid, by the bucketful..

Barack Obama, a man of the left with an empiricist, pragmatic, and politically hard-hearted temperament, is poised to deliber major progressive legislation: a transformative energy economy; universal health care; labor law reform; expanded federal rights for gays; transportation and infastructure spending; expansive regulation.

He is?

Couched in what passes for political writing. Geesh.

59. Madman in the Marketplace - 18 November 2008

58 – wow.

one can only hope that such passages will serve to be sources of embarrassment someday.

60. marisacat - 18 November 2008


So: we shall try to look for fault lines that this volcanic eruption exposed. We can — and will — find contrarian voices to fill the storyline that we’re absolutely certain must exist because it has existed for so long.

Or: we can adjust to new realities. One of them is that Obama found new ways to ascend to the summit, ways that don’t involve rewarding pressure groups, ways that didn’t even involve the netroots elites (although it certainly borrowed/stole/used the technological gridwork that they spent years building.)

It is not the New America, it is the New Canaan.

61. marisacat - 18 November 2008

TPM had this up in the afternoon (I don’t see an update yet):

We hear from a Hill source that Hillary was one of the 42 Senators who voted for the resolution condemning Lieberman but allowing him him to stay as Homeland Security chair.

We’re still trying to determine who the 13 who voted against Lieberman keeping the chairmanship are. Current tally:

For: Senators Clinton, Kerry, Durbin, Tom Udall, and Cardin.

Against: Senators Leahy and Sanders.

More in a bit.

62. CSTAR - 18 November 2008

Re 58

Were this a person in mad love, a kind word about heartbreak would be wise.

63. marisacat - 18 November 2008

Kos says it is all Reid and he for one is:

I’m done with Reid as Senate leader.

Buuut Dean said it ws Obama that called the shots.

??? Waaaaaaaa! ?? I am confused.

The Righties are laughing.

64. marisacat - 19 November 2008

nuuu thread…..


……………….. 😯 ………………

65. bayprairie - 19 November 2008


kos’s little foot stomping rant is for whack consumption only. months ago it was obvious to anyone with a brain leiberman wouldn’t suffer any retribution from harry reid and his ilk.

as soon as the coast is clear kos’ll be back tongue-bathing reid’s behind, just has he’s done off and on since 2005. the boyos are like battered wives, they froth at the mouth, profess “never again” and then a bit later they’re back trying to score some more behind the scenes free lunch from their political abusers who don’t give a fuck what they want as long as they run the parking meter known as act blue.

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