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They don’t all love us, it seems… 19 February 2009

Posted by marisacat in 2010 Mid Terms, Afghanistan War, DC Politics, Europe, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Israel/AIPAC, Moscow, WAR!.


Kabul, Afghanistan: A man begs on a street [Ahmad Masood/Reuters]

Now we are begging for civilians

The US Defence Secretary pleaded with Nato allies to send more civilian personnel to Afghanistan yesterday, after proclaiming disappointment at their failure to meet his requests for troops.

Robert Gates made his request as Nato defence ministers convened in Poland, two days after President Obama committed 17,000 more US soldiers to the fight, making Afghanistan his foreign policy priority.

Washington had hoped to capitalise on the new President’s appeal by gaining further troop commitments from European allies, but so far no pledges have been forthcoming from Cracow.

Not the least of our problems… as we pursue war in the land that sinks empires…

The new US “surge” is smaller than commanders in Afghanistan had hoped and comes amid growing concern over the logistics of prosecuting the war with too few troops and too few supply routes into the country.

Russia has said it is willing to help with the movement of supplies but its help will probably come at the cost of Nato expansionism and the US missile defence system in Eastern Europe.

The first shipment of military goods will leave Latvia soon, going through Russia, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan to Afghanistan. Moscow remains opposed to any permanent Nato or US military presence, such as a base in an area it regards as its unique sphere of influence.

Surge on.

Meanwhile at home.. first on one foot then on the other… anything to stave off a DECISION that might be unpopular.  Get it over with chumps.  Go for it. (via Politico’s “44” page, no link)

Unsatisfied with the one week reprieve it got today, Justice Department is making a last-ditch plea to a federal appeals court for a full two weeks to negotiate a deal to head off the executive privilege dispute over Congress’s demands for testimony and documents from Bush White House officials Karl Rove, Harriet Miers, and Josh Bolten. — Josh Gerstein (5:55 p.m.)

Surge on.


Pro Publica tracking The Change.

Introducing ChangeTracker: Tracking Change in Washington

by Brian Boyer, ProPublica – February 19, 2009 12:40 pm EST
We’re launching ChangeTracker, an experimental new tool that watches pages on whitehouse.gov [1], recovery.gov [2] and financialstability.gov [3] so you don’t have to. When the White House adds or deletes anything— say a blog post, or executive order—ChangeTracker will let you know.

The latest changes are below, or sign up on the right to get alerts sent to you.

Each change links to a page (courtesy of a service called Versionista [4]) that shows the different versions side-by-side. Text highlighted in red means it was removed, green means it was added. If you notice something interesting, let us know [5]. We’ll highlight the gems.

And in the hope that folks will track other important Web sites, we want you to steal our code: Here’s how to create your own tracker for any Web site [6].



Shuafat, West Bank: A Palestinian boy climbs through an opening in the West Bank barrier near Jerusalem [Guardian – 24 Hours in Pictures – February 19 2009 – Baz Ratner/Reuters]



1. NYCee - 20 February 2009

Hey lady! Well, it is getting late, and I must go.

Will try to check back in manana.

Hope you are doing well.


2. NYCee - 20 February 2009

One last thing.

Zbig Brzezinski has been talking some good sense these days, on the MSM. Raised the Morning Joe IQ (they admitted as much, much subdued as they were… thankfully! How the billionaires and millionaires should give a big chunk back in a special Richie Rich fund, shame them if they dont step up) and next, he shows up on Rachel, and although Rachel does do some good work in earnest, he served her so meaningfully here, where it was needed, socked her with a message we ALL so need to hear, here.) Thus, I share:

Clipped from Rachel Maddow Show, 2/18/09 transcript

MADDOW: It seems like the emerging, I guess, the emerging debate about what to do in the whole Afghanistan-Pakistan region comes down to this idea that whether or not the problem can be out-governed instead of outgunned, whether this is something the U.S. can be part of a constructive political solution, whether it really is a military issue.

When I look at the evidently corrupt government and government of a limited reach and Hamid Karzai and I look at the government of Pakistan which is only one year old and is bankrupt, it‘s hard for me to believe that we‘ve got enough – there‘s enough governance there to really solve this big problem.

[NYCee: The pure delight gets served here]

BRZEZINSKI: You know, I can‘t help smiling because you used two words, which we like to use when we become uncomfortable with those who are dependent on us or who are, to some extent, our allies. If we‘re uncomfortable with them, we begin to say they‘re corrupt or now we‘re saying the Pakistanis are bankrupt.

What about us? We‘re close to being bankrupt. And you know Washington and I know Washington.


BRZEZINSKI: What we have in this city is well organized, legalized corruption. But I don‘t think we ought to be going around labeling others. We have to be serious about it.

[Moi: And more…]

If we don‘t like the Afghan government, probably we can overthrow it. We better make sure that if we do that, it is a government that‘s better than the present one. We have done this before with some other countries in which we engaged.

We overthrew those with whom we were in solidarity. But then they begun to feel they are corrupt, inefficient, so we overthrew them and in the end, we lost the engagement. I‘m thinking particularly Vietnam.

So we ought to go easy on these classifications. Karzai may be not the ideal president for Afghanistan, but I‘m not sure we know that there is a much better substitute.

And above all else, we cannot treat these people in a patronizing way if we want them to work with us. You know, when we went into Afghanistan to throw out the Taliban and to try to catch Osama Bin Laden, we went in with 300 troops – 300 troops.

The Soviets didn‘t win with 160,000. We won quickly with 300 troops because most Afghans were on our side. We have wasted seven years pursuing policies which are ill-defined, not seeking any realistic objective.

And now, we have to rethink this whole engagement very seriously and take into account both Pakistani and European views.

3. NYCee - 20 February 2009

DK. at present, has jon the antizionist jew up, with a Kerry foul comment on the I/P (I’ll have the usual, please!)

Also a billmon. Of course, it is in rec. Jon is moving down the sub list.

Now I am really going to ///STOP///

4. marisacat - 20 February 2009

Zbig is def useful… whatever his faults and sins have been. He is deeply opposed to the Clintons.. so I have used comments of his for years, in that direction.. 😉 And Zbig, not being stupid, will be more and more outspoken as ObRama steps in more and more scheisse… and claims it did not happen.

BRZEZINSKI: What we have in this city is well organized, legalized corruption. But I don‘t think we ought to be going around labeling others. We have to be serious about it.

Bingo on that one. I caught an interview with an internet watch site last week… A Thomas Martin of America’s WatchDog at one point he dropped that the “deal” in DC, always, is big cash moving directly between various interests and congresspeople. The host (on KGO radio) cut off that tangent IMMEDIATELY…. and moving right along …

It was hilarious, in a sense.

5. marisacat - 20 February 2009

Oh yo have to love it! Stanford may have been laundering from Mexican drug cartels.

But that would be just soooo American. We cannot get tooo upset. Really.

6. marisacat - 20 February 2009

More to love:

Lobby Whistles Up Cordesman to “Prove” Israel Waged a Clean War in Gaza

The Cleanser


Anthony H. Cordesman, a leading military analyst from the Center for Strategic and International Studies, has published a “strategic analysis” of the Gaza massacre.(1) He reaches the remarkable conclusion that “Israel did not violate the laws of war.” The report is based on “briefings in Israeli [sic] during and immediately after the fighting made possible by a visit sponsored by Project Interchange, and using day-to-day reporting issued by the Israeli Defense Spokesman.” Cordesman omits mention that Project Interchange is funded by the American Jewish Committee. ………

7. marisacat - 20 February 2009

oh noes. Roland Burris lost Eugene Robinson. If he ever had him.

All so predictable. Face it, the Senate is our disgustingly low standard Fucking House of Lords. They did nto much like Carole (and she did screw up, admittedly but frankly a mild, small mess…) and they promoted Obama right out of there. To the catbird seat IMO.

Won’t be keeping Mr Burris. No way no how.

so, after Martinez goes home to FL, is it one Latino? Menendez… two very elderly Asians… and what? One silent lesbian… One bathroom stall gay… under protest. And so on.

8. NYCO - 20 February 2009

I heard about the student protest at NYU and thought, “Wow! Students of America, rising up!’ But what about? High tuition? Gaza? Unfair labor practices?

Er… all three, I guess.

The protesters also used a Web site, takebacknyu.com, to provide updates about what was happening in the cafeteria and to ask students to come out to support them.

The students vowed to continue the occupation of the cafeteria until they were able to present a list of demands to school administrators. The demands included thorough annual reporting of the university’s operating budget, expenditures and endowment. They also want the university to provide 13 scholarships a year to students from the Gaza Strip and to give surplus supplies to the Islamic University of Gaza.

The students also called on the school to allow graduate teaching assistants to unionize and to freeze tuition.

And they want some ponies, too.

I’m glad to see college students protesting, but this sort of thing just goes to show how they’re reinventing the wheel – rather painfully at that.

Saher Almaita, 22, a senior philosophy major at William Paterson University in Wayne, N.J., said curiosity and sympathy led him to join the protest. “We’re so alienated from each other that the opportunity to do something together is a rush,” he said, then added with a smile, “I want to experience humanity to its fullest.”

Without a focus for your protest and an actual strategy, well, good luck. I take a dark view of this sort of thing these days: with no actual political talents, a certain percentage of kids like these are just going to be cannon fodder for the next destructive -ism that comes along.

9. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009

speaking of the Reps claiming credit for the stimulus they voted against, TPM is building a Hypocrimap to track examples.

10. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009

Cordesman … that always dependable apologist for state murder. Ugh.

11. marisacat - 20 February 2009

hmm i have been following the protests in the UK at universities.. mostly about Gaza right now.. via Lenin’s Tomb…


It’s been great to read.

A few years ago quite a few campuses in the US held protests to highlight underpaid under covered (benefits) low paid staff at the universities… Perhaps those people graduated and left no bread crumbs.

12. marisacat - 20 February 2009

Emailer just popped me this…

Another scary Krugman today:


But my eye was caught by the following chilling passage (yes, things are so bad that the summarized musings of central bankers can keep you up at night): “All participants anticipated that unemployment would remain substantially above its longer-run sustainable rate at the end of 2011, even absent further economic shocks; a few indicated that more than five to six years would be needed for the economy to converge to a longer-run path characterized by sustainable rates of output growth and unemployment and by an appropriate rate of inflation.”


The closest 19th-century parallel I can find to the current slump is the recession that followed the Panic of 1873. That recession did eventually end without any government intervention, but it lasted more than five years, and another prolonged recession followed just three years later.

You can see, then, why some Fed officials are so pessimistic.

Let’s be clear: the Obama administration’s policy initiatives will help in this difficult period — especially if the administration bites the bullet and takes over weak banks. But still I wonder: Who’ll stop the pain?

13. marisacat - 20 February 2009

UK and US reach agreement on the transfer of British resident Binyam Mohamed from Guantanamo Bay to the UK.

For more details: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news

14. catnip - 20 February 2009

From the last thread:

Quoi?! Tu ne l’aimez pas notre president terrible? Catnipastophe, madame, Catnipastrophe!!!

Yes, I failed to prostrate myself before the Altar of Obama and was pelted with copious amounts of poutine.

I’ve recovered though (and I’m full now). 🙂

(C’est “mademoiselle”).

15. catnip - 20 February 2009

Hilarious headline du jour – HuffPo’s John Gibson Did Not Compare Eric Holder To Monkey With Bright Blue Scrotum (UPDATED)

UPDATE: The Huffington Post has learned that the below video [sic] has been doctored. We regret the error and apologize to Mr. Gibson. John Gibson never compared Eric Holder to a monkey with a bright blue scrotum.

Rather, as seen in the unedited video below, Gibson played audio of Holder saying “nation of cowards” — so his full, unedited remarks were:

“We were talking about Eric Holder today on the radio and his comment that this is a nation of cowards.”

The video was doctored to include Trace Gallagher’s voice saying, “bright blue scrotum” where Gibson played Holder’s “nation of cowards” remark. The Huffington Post does not know the source of the video’s doctoring — it was picked up off TVNewser.


16. NYCO - 20 February 2009

The posts and comments on the Take Back NYU blog are illuminating, although depressing because these lusty young Che’s seem so naive and unfocused. As one person points out in the comments, these kids have no conception of needing to control their own message, and the blog (and its critical comments) have become a liability to them.

Anyhow, it seems that the students are now being removed from the commandeered dining hall. Oh, the humanity.

Sorry, I don’t really mean to sound so nasty, but this is like a textbook example of How Not to Change the World.

17. NYCO - 20 February 2009

Oh, and here’s the blow by blow via Twitter.

Some highlights:

10 am yesterday: Take Back NYU has occupied NYU! Stay tuned for more updates!

We just got a huge boost! About 25 supporters just bumrushed their way into the cafeteria.

Noon: Folks are doing revolution calisthenics to Le Tigre

4 pm: They are denying us the food we require, threatening us with academic and legal repercussions if we stay after 1am.

10 pm: stay tuned, we’re about to issue a new communiqué

10 am: They’ve cut off internet access to Kimmel! They’re trying to silence us, but we won’t stop!

Noon: Security has broken the barricades and entered the occupied zone

Students are being “escorted” out of the building

At least 10 confirmed suspensions.

I wonder if they ever got the quesadillas they were demanding. Oh well. Twas a glorious victory.

18. marisacat - 20 February 2009


I had nto caught the text of the altering. Frankly I think “bright blue scrotum” improves the whole thing. All sides.


Madame vs Mademoiselle 😆

I remember the trip, when having been M’selle for ever, suddenly shop clerks and waiters called me Mme. I went into SHOCK and speedily found a drink. Alcoholic drink. I’ve mostly sort of scrolled by the usual benchmarks with little interest but that one hit.

19. marisacat - 20 February 2009

Dow down 153

20. keirdubois - 20 February 2009

“Bright blue scrotum” is a great band name.

21. marisacat - 20 February 2009

I think so too… band name i mean… 8)

22. marisacat - 20 February 2009

Understatement up ahead! Brace yurselves!

Press secretary reacts to the Dow being at a 6-year low at his daily briefing Friday, says it’s “going to take some time to get out of that hole.”

23. NYCO - 20 February 2009

I read over the NYU students’ manifesto…

Our demands are as follows:

1. Amnesty for all parties involved.
2. Full compensation for all employees whose jobs were disrupted during the course of the occupation.
3. Public release of NYU’s annual budget and endowment.
4. Allow student workers (including T.A.’s) to collectively bargain.
5. A fair labor contract for all NYU employees at home and abroad.
6. A Socially Responsible Finance Committee that will immediately investigate war profiteers and the lifting of the Coke ban.
7. Annual scholarships be provided for thirteen Palestinian students.
8. That the university donates all excess supplies and materials in an effort to rebuild the University of Gaza.
9. Tuition stabilization for all students, beginning with the class of 2012. Tuition rates for each successive year will not exceed the rate of inflation. The university shall meet 100% of government-calculated student financial need.
10. That student groups have priority when reserving space in the buildings owned or leased by New York University, including, and especially, the Kimmel Center.
11. That the general public have access to Bobst Library.

Yep, their first demand was for safety for themselves. That’s what passes for radical action these days, apparently.

Not serious.

24. marisacat - 20 February 2009

hmm has Ed Meese walked the halls yet to point out to the local cops who to arrest? That is what happened at Berkeley in the FSM… to Mario Savio and others. Then forcibly dragged off… Bettina Aptheker, whose parents were members in good standing of the CPUSA was labeled a communist, of course. And so on.

25. NYCO - 20 February 2009

I think at NYU what happened was that the little lambs did not suspect that they would be told “OK, come out, we’ll negotiate” and then their leaders would be detained and suspended. No fairs!!!!

Sorry, I don’t have much patience for that kind of naivete, especially since we’ve been told over and over that these kids are the Smartest Youth Ever and that They Are The Future.

They need to grow up, and fast.

26. marisacat - 20 February 2009

hmm i think you have to expect arrest, frankly. At the extreme perhaps, with other steps very likely taken…

27. marisacat - 20 February 2009

I haven’t read any of the local reports on the occupation… but it seems no leader has emerged. FSM did have that happen. Other protests out here in recent years also had leaders emerge. Makes a difference I think..

28. NYCO - 20 February 2009

The problem is that American kids have never actually dealt with an actually repressive government. Everything to them is playtime. They believe that real-world rules should not have to apply to them. That demands, just because they have them and are expressing them, should be fulfilled with no repercussions to themselves.

Either they will (hopefully) learn, or they’ll keep staging immature lash-outs that don’t accomplish anything. If the latter, we’re in for a lot of trouble.

I never used to understand what the good of “student strikes” were, unless the students involved in them clearly understood what going to class meant: acquiescing, contributing to the social order. French students understand it, maybe, which is why they can threaten to take their acquiescence away, in order to achieve demands.

But I don’t think American students are very conscious of the social order they help keep in place by quietly going to class. American students, apparently, believe that THEY are valued by society, rather than their acquiescence being the thing of value. They are extremely naive.

Surely, the NYU students’ causes would have been much better served by a general student strike – a tactic that would be far more easily exportable to other campuses around the country. But, then again, they would probably have had to spend too much time explaining the concept to other American students.

29. marisacat - 20 February 2009

I LOVE General Strikes. I am waiting for a big West Coast one, hopefully in my lifetime. The wars don’t end, the economy continues to plummet, and there is flap doodle in the WH after Bushiter… it may be down the road.

I’d rather a stable, ”tranquil nation”, but they never seem to want that, so I say let it blow.

30. marisacat - 20 February 2009

Maybe NYCee will stop back around.. she is an alum and lives near NYU… there were neighborhood and city resident protests over the past couple of years over land grab… she might know something about the current state on campus…

31. NYCO - 20 February 2009

29. It also seems to me that, the more specific your demands, the more a specific strike (ie an occupation of a building) might work. Or, at least have some meaning. The more general your demands (and the NYU students’ demands were extremely general), the more a general strike would be an effective tactic to aim for.

32. marisacat - 20 February 2009

From the VV… the prices are interesting, esp as I am totally out of the lopp..or loop rather… 😉

An anonymous Runnin’ Scared commenter has a suggestion for the protesters: “You want to see John Sexton shit his pants? Get a large percentage of the student body to go on leave for a semester… Get them to move out of NYU housing (approx $1550 a month! per person!). Get them to drop their meal plans (which can be $2000+ a semester)…. The only way to get it to stop behaving badly is to boycott its products.”

33. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

The NYU Protest – to me – BULLSHIT through and through. Almost designed to fail ADL ops to render the term Occupation Seriously. That Bad. The Jewish kid walking around with the camera? GMAFB. The kids almost the charicature of that riff on the University as “NYJew”, a place of increasingly pampered candyasses..

In the aftermath, we’re going to here more about how NYU lost soooo much money …Victims all around don’cha’know…
And Bebe will prolly make it one of his first stops in NYU seeing as how Columbia is now contaminated and all…..

And The footage from this little production will be used front and center as invaluable psyops on student groups raising their heads.
To me, its all fuckin bullshit.

If those kids were serious, before they went in there to hole up, they would have gained SOLE control of a number of safe houses around the city…

With dozens of dissoriented chimps and plenty of meth…

Reflect the times and all…

34. marisacat - 20 February 2009

Burris’ CofS resigns.


35. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

Uh huh. Sure. From comments on the VV.
This is a rat-fucking op from start to finish.

Have you read their demands? This isn’t about tuition. They’ve got a pro-Palestinian agenda. Higher up in their list of demands than tuition is “Annual scholarships be provided for thirteen Palestinian students.”
and “That the university donates all excess supplies and materials in an effort to rebuild the University of Gaza.”

Fuck them and their demands. Can’t wait til they’re expelled. Terrorist Supporters.

Posted by: FU Morons at February 20, 2009 10:47 AM

This is one of those fluffer pseudo events that just happpens to spring up ( after Spring Bursars bills are resoloved that is, LOL)

As the ancient Safra Bank of Lebanon, Brazil and Switzerland ( they ain’t Papists and they ain’t Muslim, LOL) now the latest “victim” in Madoff’s pecadillo. Madoff, the latest -today- LOL- Who apperently ,nope, , It’s CONFIRMED! never bought nuttin SECURITIEZED… Sure.

And More real good UNREAL News… As Bebe to be head ruling wahackjob of the drooling whackjobs.

And , (these hits keep comin)-
As a kweeiffer of a story is leaked through BBC today that Iran “admits” killing troops in Iraq and would stop if allowed nukes…

What Masters of Deceit.

But now a senior British official has revealed that not only did the Iranians privately admit their involvement, they even made an astonishing offer to switch off the attacks in Iraq if in return the West would stop blocking Iran’s controversial nuclear programme.

[ This is the inset on BBC:]

We stop killing you in Iraq… you allow us to carry on with our nuclear programme
Sir John Sawers on the Iranian offer

Sir John Sawers, currently Britain’s ambassador to the United Nations, said Iranians raised the offer during informal private talks at a hotel in London.

Look at this shit quote:

“There were various Iranians who would come to London and suggest we had tea in some hotel or other. They’d do the same in Paris, they’d do the same in Berlin, and then we’d compare notes among the three of us,” he told the BBC.

“The Iranians wanted to be able to strike a deal whereby they stopped killing our forces in Iraq in return for them being allowed to carry on with their nuclear programme: ‘We stop killing you in Iraq, stop undermining the political process there, you allow us to carry on with our nuclear programme without let or hindrance.'”

The deal was dismissed by the British government and Iran’s nuclear enrichment restarted shortly after.

We know its true, this story from Britain, right?
When were the Brits ever complicit in disinformation?
Surely We can take this to the… well somewhere.
This story out of the UK has to be true.

Afterall, there IS the mention of a discussion over “Tea” as the three mysterious Iranians admitted they’re at War with the US in Iraq. Uh Huh.

36. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

Sorry Mcat. I need a closed quote after VV.

37. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

Sorry again. The mistake is I need a closed link in the first line after “VV” in #35

38. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

Burris to “express solidarity” with NYU Occupiers.

(Okay so I’m kidding there) LOL.

39. NYCO - 20 February 2009

Obama Tells Mayors to Spend Wisely

“I want to be clear about this: We cannot tolerate business as usual — not in Washington, not in our state capitols, not in America’s cities and towns,” Mr. Obama told a gathering of the United States Conference of Mayors. He said he was putting them “on notice” that if they propose a wasteful project, “I will call them out on it.”

Oh wow. Good fucking luck with that, Mr. President.

40. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009

Sirota: The Growing Anger In the Heartland

(Lansing Mayor) Bernero, representing the boiling anger that’s roiling the country, makes a point that needs to be hammered over and over and over again—like he does—over the din of Fox News cartoon characters. How can anyone with a straight face demand blue-collar workers take huge pay and benefit cuts at a time those workers’ tax dollars are subsidizing bonuses on Wall Street?

Part of the answer is that we live in a country whose ruling class is deeply insane. Hardly a day goes by when you don’t see sociopathy packaged as Serious Opinion. Today’s installment, in fact, makes my point about Wall Street. Check out the statement of bailed-out Chase CEO John Dimon. Deriding homeowners who are getting foreclosed on, he said:

“We should teach the American people, you’re supposed to meet your obligations, not run from them.”

Right, so we should blame problems on autoworkers for negotiating decent benefits and homeowners getting foreclosed on, while bailed-out CEOs who didn’t meet their own expectations lecture us that “we should teach the American people you’re supposed to meet your obligations.” And you can bet media cartoon characters will be right there to promote this kind of paradigm as Serious Opinion.

What’s new, though, is the anger. Bernero’s passion exemplifies a level of rage out in the country that isn’t being fully appreciated in Washington, D.C., as evidenced by everything from the continued no-strings-attached bailouts to the criticism of the most basic “Buy America” laws. The anger out here is real and it is breaking through the Beltway din. It is only going to get worse if genuine change doesn’t happen in short order.

41. marisacat - 20 February 2009

Oh wow. Good fucking luck with that, Mr. President.

Yeah I laughed pretty hard when I heard his big “or I’ll punish you myself” stick today. Wet noodle days.

42. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009

“Bright blue scrotum” is a great band name.

But a really uncomfortable Saturday night.

Speaking of males having trouble with the things they love:

Man In Shoot-Up Over Analog Cut-Off: KARE-TV

The station reports that a 70-year-old Joplin man was arrested and charged with unlawful discharge of a firearm after shooting his TV set. Responding to a report of shots being fired, the station reported, the police found the man angry that he had both lost his cable and had been unable to get his new DTV converter box to work.

According to the man’s wife, he had been drinking.

43. NYCO - 20 February 2009

41. Yeah, because that policy has already worked so well with the banks spending their TARP funds.

Reminds me of the old Robin Williams routine about British bobbies… “Stop! Or I’ll say ‘stop’ again!”

44. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009

Bill proposes ISPs, Wi-Fi keep logs for police

Republican politicians on Thursday called for a sweeping new federal law that would require all Internet providers and operators of millions of Wi-Fi access points, even hotels, local coffee shops, and home users, to keep records about users for two years to aid police investigations.

The legislation, which echoes a measure proposed by one of their Democratic colleagues three years ago, would impose unprecedented data retention requirements on a broad swath of Internet access providers and is certain to draw fire from businesses and privacy advocates.

“While the Internet has generated many positive changes in the way we communicate and do business, its limitless nature offers anonymity that has opened the door to criminals looking to harm innocent children,” U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, said at a press conference on Thursday. “Keeping our children safe requires cooperation on the local, state, federal, and family level.”

Joining Cornyn was Texas Rep. Lamar Smith, the senior Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, and Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, who said such a measure would let “law enforcement stay ahead of the criminals.”

Two bills have been introduced so far–S.436 in the Senate and H.R.1076 in the House. Each of the companion bills is titled “Internet Stopping Adults Facilitating the Exploitation of Today’s Youth Act,” or Internet Safety Act.

Each contains the same language: “A provider of an electronic communication service or remote computing service shall retain for a period of at least two years all records or other information pertaining to the identity of a user of a temporarily assigned network address the service assigns to that user.”

45. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009
46. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009

Group urges civil disobedience in foreclosure evictions

A national community organizing group Thursday announced a campaign of civil disobedience designed to help families resist eviction and remain in their homes after foreclosure.

Activists with ACORN, the Assn. of Community Organizations for Reform Now, said they would encourage people facing eviction to use text messaging and cellphones to quickly summon volunteers to their homes. The entire group would resist orders to leave, forcing sheriff’s deputies to arrest large numbers of people to complete the eviction — and drawing attention to the evictees’ plight in the process.

The HomeStaying campaign is being waged in Los Angeles and more than 20 other cities, including Oakland, Houston and New York, said Charles Jackson, an ACORN spokesman.

Jackson and others with the group met with reporters outside a Watts house with comedian Roseanne Barr to demonstrate how the campaign would work.

Debora Beard said she and her husband, Tommy, have received an eviction notice requiring them to leave their home of 20 years.

Beard, a teacher’s assistant, said she would not leave unless she was “led out by the sheriff. . . . I am not leaving without a fight.”

As she spoke, more than 20 of her neighbors and other activists burst into cheers, yelling “Enough is enough” and pledging that they would join her in refusing to leave.

It’s unclear how effective the campaign will be — no mass civil disobedience has yet taken place.

But the group, whose actions have been described as both progressive and radical, is clearly tapping into populist resentment toward the high number of foreclosures.

47. NYCO - 20 February 2009

In other news, Socks the Cat has passed on. He was thought to be 19 or 20 years old.

48. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009

SG Won’t Disavow Bush Position in Controversial DNA Case

The solicitor general’s office has turned down a request by the Innocence Project to disavow a Bush Administration stance on prisoners’ access to DNA evidence in postconviction proceedings. As a result, on March 2, Neal Katyal will make his debut as deputy solicitor general by arguing before the Supreme Court in support of the state of Alaska’s view that prisoners have no constitutional right to obtain DNA evidence that might help them prove their innocence — even if the prisoners pay for the DNA testing themselves. The case is District Attorney’s Office for the Third Judicial District v. Osborne.

The decision to maintain the same position as the Bush Administration in the case has caused deep disappointment among innocence advocates, especially in light of President Barack Obama’s strong support of access to DNA evidence while a state senator in Illinois, where many of the early successes in exonerating innocent inmates through DNA evidence took place.

The episode also highlights the tension between the eagerness of interest groups for a new administration to change direction, and the institutional reluctance in the solicitor general’s office to shift gears too suddenly, for fear of losing credibility with the high court. We wrote about this tension here earlier this month.

“We recognize that the Justice Department strives to maintain consistent positions after a transition in most cases,” says Nina Morrison, a staff attorney with the Innocence Project, which represents the prisoner in the Alaska case.”We believe that the position filed by the Bush Administration is so extreme as to make this one of the rare cases that warrants a change in position.”

49. marisacat - 20 February 2009

The solicitor general’s office has turned down a request by the Innocence Project to disavow a Bush Administration stance on prisoners’ access to DNA evidence in postconviction proceedings.

That is simply ridiculous. And a bad bad harbinger.

Apparently NOT extreme enough to be rejected by the Great Liberal.

”We believe that the position filed by the Bush Administration is so extreme as to make this one of the rare cases that warrants a change in position.”

50. marisacat - 20 February 2009


Apparently Volcker said we are tanking faster than The Holy Almighty Great Depression.

What can you do but laugh? As Ob and Gibbs get out their stammering band aids.

And Tiny Revolution builds off Kagan’s version of “they don’t mind being killed”…. and tracks that sort of thing back. Think TR left out Lincoln… but other than that.. a good go at murder.

51. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009

This is Why You’re Fat.

The 8th one down is dedicated to Catnip.

52. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009
53. marisacat - 20 February 2009

I heard that about the Unemployment Debit card today. Will no one rein in the theives? Ob? Ob? Knob? Are you there?
Dodd? Banking committee??? Barney?????????


54. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009


A creepy feeling ushers in President’s Day this year as the suspicion grows that nobody in charge of anything knows what what to do next. The usual yin-yang consensus has solidified in congress along party lines, both equally idiotic. In the White House, Mr. Obama is under excruciating pressure to “do something” as systems unravel and economies augur into darkness. Amid all the anxiety and raging cluelessness, one thing is clear: we’re doing everything possible to evade reality.

The reality we can’t face is that one way of life is over and a new one is waiting to be born. It’s been waiting, really, since the early 1970s, when God whacked the USA upside its head to announce that we’d outgrown our once-stupendous domestic supply of oil. I remember those fervid months following the OPEC oil embargo of 1973 (I covered the story as a young newspaper reporter.) The basic message was this: from now on we’ll be running this show on other people’s oil so we better start doing things differently. Back then, the not-yet-lost-in-a-fog-of-greed Baby Boom generation rolled up its tie-dyed sleeves and got to work doing a lot of forward-looking things: micro hydro-electric, passive solar houses, rural homesteading, the next generation of public transit (BART, the D.C. Metro), the first wave of urban gentrification….

Then, in 1979, the Ayatollah tossed out the Shah of Iran, we got another dose of oil problems, and a year later, President Jimmy Carter’s clear-eyed view of the oil situation as “the moral equivalent of war” got overturned in favor of Ronald Reagan’s dreadful Hollywood nostalgia projector. As usual in times of severe social stress, the public got delusional. Mr. Reagan was very lucky. During his tenure, two of the last great non-OPEC oil discoveries came into full production — Prudhoe Bay, Alaska and the North Sea — and took the leverage away from the Islamic oil nations who had been making us miserable with their threats, embargos, price-jackings, and hostage-takings.

Americans drew the false conclusion that Ronald Reagan was an economic genius (a similar thing happened in Great Britain with Margaret Thatcherism). The price of oil went down steeply while they were in office. Britain could kick back and enjoy it’s last remaining industry, banking, on a majestic cushion of energy resources. The USA resumed its major post-war industry: suburban sprawl building. Reaganism got elevated to the status of a religion, though it was little more than a twisted version of Eisenhower-on-steroids. Under Reagan, WalMart embarked on its campaign to destroy every main street economy in the nation. The Baby Boomers came back from the land, clipped their pony tails, discovered venture capital, real estate investment trusts, securitization of “consumer” debt, and the Hamptons. Greed was good. (No, really….)

55. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009
56. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009
57. marisacat - 20 February 2009

Jeane Cummings of Politco (on with Gwen Ifill) is saying there are provisions in the Stumble Bill to help Small Business.. and there is no one in the SBA to administer it. Among other agencies that are severely understaffed.

Wear water wings is all I can say.

58. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009
59. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

We don’t have self service gas stations in Jersey. It promotes Good Jobs and Protects the environment, and all…Like 5 dollar a shot ATM’s.

Either that or they don’t want us stepping over last night’s Mob Hit in the parking lot and contaminating the crime scene…

60. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009
61. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

LMAO. Oh that’s hillarious, madman.

“Yes, those kids are pretty dense,” you say, “but not my child.” Yes, unfortunately. Your child, too.


The bottom line is that for many of these hopelessly thick-headed children, teaching is a form of abuse. It must be stopped.

These kids already know just how dumb they are, so why force them to return to school day after day and prolong their humiliation? Given the choice, many of these kids would gladly drop out in fourth of fifth grade to pursue their fortunes or simply go feral.


Few would argue with the assertion that America’s standard of living has decreased over the past half century or so. Without specific data on the subject it’s difficult to know for sure, but it certainly seems as though this trend began shortly after the advent of self-service gas stations. These new low-wage workers could fill all sorts of jobs that have long since vanished from the American landscape such as windshield wiping and chimney sweeping. Say goodbye to the surly, unhelpful 20-somethings at the local mall and corner coffee shop. Children, especially the dumb ones, are eager to please.


62. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009

BHHM – I laughed

63. marisacat - 20 February 2009

Speaking of abortion, Spain to [more broadly] legalise it……….

[T]he move is the latest in an ambitious programme of social change under Spanish prime minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero that has seen him clash repeatedly with the Roman Catholic Church.

Since coming to power in 2004 his socialist government has legalised gay marriage, eased divorce laws and dropped religious education from the curriculum in public schools, all measures which have deeply angered church leaders.

In Spain abortion was decriminalised in 1985 but it is offered only under restricted circumstances and rarely in a public hospital. Terminations are only allowed until the 12th week of pregnancy in cases of rape or until the 22nd week in cases of severe fetal malformation.

In early 2008, some 25 women and doctors were arrested in raids on abortion clinics in Madrid accused of falsifying doctors’ certificates. The raids sparked a nationwide strike by the clinics, and forced the government to fast-track the new legislation. ….

64. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

2009 and the Speaker of the House taking a lecture from the Pope on abortion.

Such Progress! And shoes!

65. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

Someone should bean em both in the head with a size 12.
A plated baby’s first pair…

66. marisacat - 20 February 2009

I read that just as JPII did when Gerri Ferraro visited, there was no daily announcement tin Rome of the visit, nor was a photo published. It was called a “private” visit.

Apparently Gerry told JayPEEEEEEEEEE that while she personally opposed abortion it should remain legal.

Now I wonder if old Ratzy Ass Swag would do that – no announce no photo – for the Catholic Veepessa.

My guess, Biden would privately say other things. Soemthing along the lines of “Give us a chance we are working on it Father”.

(this is not en endorsement of Ferraro OR Pelosi)

67. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

Somebody needs to tell Il Papa to amp up the Volume against War, Poverty, and Greed or Shut His Fuckin Pie Holy.

68. Madman in the Marketplace - 20 February 2009

Shut His Fuckin Pie Holy.

Why … he gets his closety ass off telling women what to do with their pie holies.

69. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

My dream job would be working in the Vatican Press Op.
I’d just put out all sorts of shit ,
the first time they went out shoe shopping.

“Holy Father Excommunicates Biden, Dodd over Bankruptcy Bill.”

“Holy Father says Israel has “Issues” needs to “Get Over Stuff.”

Vatican Apologizes, Cites Clerical Error in Bethlehem Manger,
There WAS Room at the Inn – Deluxe-

and, of course, the Whopper:

“Jesus Christ” NOT Son of God, rather,
nickname for household cat of irate innkeeper.

God Please, just one shift at the Press Office.

70. marisacat - 20 February 2009

LOL I think most jobs at El Vaticano are taken by either Opus Dei or Legionnairies of Christ, the Macial org.

Tight hold on the joint…………….. 8)

71. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

It’s all such a corrupt self perpetuating scam though and through.
If only a fraction of the political mobilization and money spent on the abortion obsession was diverted into actual social justice…But therein lies the rub, it’s self perpetuating brainwashing, protecting their market share in the power and control racket..And ensuring a steady supply of impoverished desperate beings willing to bash their brains in against each other in service of Capital, the State, and, of course, religion…

72. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

“Catholics announce Merger With Islam.”

“Israel Admits Having The Bomb.”

73. BooHooHooMan - 20 February 2009

“Holy Father Says Lord Smoked Weed, Blogged.”

74. diane - 20 February 2009

Will Obama restore constitutional government?


….plans for detention at home are being expanded under Democratic Party leadership. On Jan. 22, Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Fla., a former judge who was impeached and removed from the bench before being elected to Congress, introduced HR645, the National Emergency Centers Establishment Act. This bill calls for the establishment of six centers on military installations across the United States. Previous centers were for addressing an “emergency influx of immigrants” or to support “the rapid development of new programs.” These new FEMA centers are “to provide temporary housing, medical and humanitarian assistance to individuals and families dislocated due to an emergency or major disaster.”

Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, is to date the sole member of Congress willing to raise a public stink. “Apparently, the fusion centers, militarized police, surveillance cameras and a domestic military command is not enough,” blogged Rep. Paul. “Even though we know that detention facilities are already in place, they now want to legalize the construction of FEMA camps on military installations using the ever popular excuse that the facilities are for the purposes of a national emergency. With the phony debt-based economy getting worse and worse by the day, the possibility of civil unrest is becoming a greater threat to the establishment. One need only look at Iceland, Greece and other nations for what might happen in the United States next.”

Why, asks Paul, are these centers being constructed on military bases if they’re not for the purpose of detaining large groups of people? Obama should explain what is going on.

Last fall, we learned who would be doing the rounding up when, for the first time since Reconstruction, U.S. troops were deployed within U.S. borders. The Third Infantry Division’s 1st Combat Team, trained during multiple tours in Iraq, will “help with civil unrest and crowd control.” According to Air Force Gen. Gene Renuart, commander of the U.S. Northern Command, at least two more brigades will be deployed by 2010. The doctrine of posse comitatus, under which U.S. troops shall not be used against U.S. citizens, prohibits detaining us. Obama needs to explain why continuing this program is not a violation.


As much as I dislike Ron Paul’s fiscal ideology, I have to say every once in a while I agree with what he says 100%.

And yes Obama what the fuck is going on…JP Morgan Chase Unemployment plastic with fees? Fees just to talk with the fuckers at the bank? ….can you explain Obama, why Chase/Wamu is being allowed to offer $100 (the publics bailout money…or the profit from UNEMPLOYMENT FEES?) to anyone who opens a new account at Chase/Wamu?

75. CSTAR - 21 February 2009

Holy Father says proofs of existence of God in fact show God is a mathematical contradiction.

76. marisacat - 21 February 2009


Meet the Press: Govs. Jindal, Crist. Roundtable with Bloomberg’s Hunt, NPR’s Norris, CNBC’s Quick

This Week: Gov. Schwarzenegger. Roundtable with NY Times’ Krugman, economics professor Nouriel Roubini, Business Week’s Welch, George Will

Fox News Sunday: Govs. Rendell, Granholm, Sanford, Pawlenty

State of the Union: Gov. Barbour, Sen. McConnell, Gov. Schwarzenegger, HUD Secretary Donovan

Face the Nation: HUD Secretary Donovan, Govs. Corzine, Daniels, Strickland.

77. marisacat - 21 February 2009

grist:mill:grind. What to make of it all… ABC just mentioned that last July Bushiter signed a bill allocating 4 billion to the states to buy foreclosed homes and maintain them… monies to go to the states for that purpose (I have zero memory of this, fwiw) and apparently not a dollar in that allocation has left the Treasury. 7 months ago…

hmmm. The bankers all got theirs tho, right?

78. marisacat - 21 February 2009

via the Mike Allen Politico email:

HUFFPOST BANNER (‘NO RIGHTS’) LINKS TO … AP, ‘Terror Detainees: Obama backs Bush:

No rights for Bagram prisoners,’ By Nedra Pickler and Matt Apuzzo: ‘The Obama administration, siding with the Bush White House, contended Friday that detainees in Afghanistan have no constitutional rights. In a two-sentence court filing, the Justice Department said it agreed that detainees at Bagram Airfield cannot use U.S. courts to challenge their detention. The filing shocked human rights attorneys.’

79. marisacat - 21 February 2009

Apparently the CT chimp’s mother died in similar circumstances

80. Madman in the Marketplace - 21 February 2009

419 scammer impersonates the nation of Ethiopia, takes $27 million from Citibank

To carry out the elaborate scheme, prosecutors in New York said on Friday, the man, identified as Paul Gabriel Amos, 37, a Nigerian citizen who lived in Singapore, worked with others to create official-looking documents that instructed Citibank to wire the money in two dozen transactions to accounts that Mr. Amos and the others controlled around the world.

The money came from a Citibank account in New York held by the National Bank of Ethiopia, that country’s central bank. Prosecutors said the conspirators, contacted by Citibank to verify the transactions, posed as Ethiopian bank officials and approved the transfers.

81. Madman in the Marketplace - 21 February 2009

This Week: Gov. Schwarzenegger. Roundtable with NY Times’ Krugman, economics professor Nouriel Roubini, Business Week’s Welch, George Will

OOOOO, that might be kinda fun.

82. marisacat - 21 February 2009

yeah I thought I’d try to catch the Nouriel one… and see what sludge Arnold excretes…

Have to love the Nigerian run scam… few steps up from the email scams.

83. Madman in the Marketplace - 21 February 2009

The thought of Roubini responding to Will brings a smile to my face.

Just found this: Pat Buchanan didn’t like Holder’s speech:

BUCHANAN: OK, let me tell some truths. Let me tell some truths. Let me tell some truths. White folks in America are not responsible for the 70 percent illegitimacy rate in the black community. We are not responsible for the fact that African-Americans commit crimes at seven times the rate of white Americans. We are not responsible for the fact that many more children in the African-American community, 75 percent, are born out of wedlock, as I said.All of these things are the responsibility of the African-American community. And its leaders should address the problems in their own community and stop blaming folks who are not responsible.

DYSON: Let me respond to that. First of all—first of all—first of all—first of all, Jesse Jackson has been responding to that issue for the last 40 years. Many people have been having a vibrant, vital, consistent conversation about the necessity for self-responsibility.What I didn‘t hear you say is that black people are not responsible for Oscar Grant, when he goes out in Oakland, and then gets viciously assaulted by a policeman. We are not responsible for chimpanzee commercials and cartoons put forth…BUCHANAN: Right. DYSON: … by “The New York Post” that draw—let me finish—that draw an implicit relationship between the president…

BUCHANAN: … let me tell you, the—in the statistics on group crime against individuals, gang rape and gang assaults, the numbers are almost 100-1. Forty-five percent of African-American crime is committed against whites. Whites commit 3 percent of their crimes against African-Americans.

All crime should be condemned, but it seems to me, in the African-American community, you should look to your own responsibilities, instead of our faults.


DYSON: See, what you have done, you have tried to derail—you‘re trying to (AUDIO GAP) responsibility for taking (AUDIO GAP) step. According to you, the entire problem of racial fascism in this country rests upon the backs of black people.

You have not owned up to, at one point in this conversation, the reality that…

BUCHANAN: No, it doesn‘t. I‘m saying you‘re not taking—owning up to anything, fellow. (oh, he so wanted to say “boy” there)

DYSON: … the dominant American culture has fed the—and fueled the vicious divisiveness that we continue to confront. So, now you‘re trying to scapegoat.

BUCHANAN: Stop blaming everybody else for your—you continue to blame—look, the African-American community was…


DYSON: I‘m not blaming anybody.


DYSON: But when black people talk about honest feelings, it‘s blaming. When white people talk about it, it‘s called being held responsible.

I remember when Pat was a racist nut that everyone made fun of, before he was on TV seemingly 24/7.

84. marisacat - 21 February 2009

May Pat and Dyson bite each other to death. If it is not the Pats of the earth spewing fake facts (as they drool in joy at racial division)… then ti is the Dysons gibbering about either Sharpton or Jesse J sr.

All so old. And relentlessly served up.

A pox on all houses.

Meanwhile Oakland drifts with a shit ass black mayor and a multiracial BART board (a white woman leads it, the BART police chief is Chinese, the board members are the full spectrum with only 2 that seem to have awakened there is a big issue here) that considers itself “threatened” by a possible BART strike from residents.

I’d be really surprised to see Holder or Obama take the part of social justice for a bullet in the back. Both have had charmed lives in many ways… and neither comes down from enslaved black field laborers. Which Robeson’s son estimates to be 70% of the current US population. And that is mostly who gets left out, year after year after year.

I am so done with the pundits. Of any color.

85. Madman in the Marketplace - 21 February 2009
86. diane - 21 February 2009

Madman (85)

This can’t be highlighted enough

After World War II, the nation’s tax bill was roughly split between corporations and individuals. But after years of changes in the federal tax code and international economy, “the corporate share of taxes has declined to a fourth the amount individuals pay,” according to the US Office of Management and Budget.

Further, quite a few of the wealthy cheat on their taxes to a tune that makes, food stamps, unemployment, blah blah blah, quite irrelevant…I’m personally aware of a person who claimed a $60K deduction for Bush Regan Iran Contra stunts as a Charitable Contribution…in that instance, they were thwarted by the tax preparer…but I can well imagine all those instances that weren’t thwarted.

87. Madman in the Marketplace - 21 February 2009

Soros sees no bottom for world financial “collapse”

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Renowned investor George Soros said on Friday the world financial system has effectively disintegrated, adding that there is yet no prospect of a near-term resolution to the crisis.

Soros said the turbulence is actually more severe than during the Great Depression, comparing the current situation to the demise of the Soviet Union.

He said the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers in September marked a turning point in the functioning of the market system.

“We witnessed the collapse of the financial system,” Soros said at a Columbia University dinner. “It was placed on life support, and it’s still on life support. There’s no sign that we are anywhere near a bottom.”

His comments echoed those made earlier at the same conference by Paul Volcker, a former Federal Reserve chairman who is now a top adviser to President Barack Obama.

Volcker said industrial production around the world was declining even more rapidly than in the United States, which is itself under severe strain.

“I don’t remember any time, maybe even in the Great Depression, when things went down quite so fast, quite so uniformly around the world,” Volcker said.

88. marisacat - 21 February 2009

It is impossible to convince people, of a wide stripe (more than a few “liberals” HA! in there) that ordinary welfare to individuals is,

first, small in the over all budget,

two, goes far more to whites than to blacks based on sheer demographics… and my own favorite that I argued for years,

welfare money is part of the economy.

It does not go to the Caymans. It stays here. LOL it goes to markets and sundries shops that provide the basics.

It is impossible to convince people.

89. marisacat - 21 February 2009


speaking of charitable donations, or what passes for charity… that was an almost under the radar issue with Daschle. It was alluded to but carefully couched. And he was given an opportunity to “amend” his charitable deductions. The issues were several: NO RECEIPTS… in several cases… and in one case, the “charity” was to an individual person’s name (which I never read disclosed) and that too he was allowed to “reassign”.

LOL He should beat it out of town. But he has nto lived in S Dakota for decades.

90. diane - 21 February 2009

Marisa (88)

(more than a few “liberals” HA! in there)…mmmm, as I recollect DKOS was filled with them….but then I came to believe that DKos was filled with 99.9999% white people of a far higher income bracket than those who would immediately get fired if they were found blogging on the internet all day long when they were supposed to be working….so fucking dense they can’t begin to imagine how hypocritical they sound.

91. diane - 21 February 2009

Marisa (89)

Our Masters, try to ensure that all in the Accounting/Tax industry are on board with the Program…those who aren’t get to live in Hell…………..the top echelons at the IRS are also aiders and abbetters

Still vivid in my memory re Enron, that a peon noted the Anderson (spelling?) Tax shenanigans (copyrighted no doubt), only to be immediately shot down.

92. diane - 21 February 2009

…alas…cream….and scum……rise to the top…………….on this earth….

a true conundrum

93. marisacat - 21 February 2009

Dkos is frat land.Young and not so young. And the service class of women. I’ll leave it at that.

I remember a hilarious thread I read at oen of the offshoots… a whole string of regular commenters mindlessly complaining how very odd it was that workers in their homes, or in one case a small biz down the Peninsula here… their workers all trashed some drain before leaving. usually a toilet. Usually with broken tiles… or in one case magazines and plastic picnic table ware.

They were all so angry and thought it was so odd.

One by one they never got it.

It was funny in a “what can you do with people like that” way. By which I mean the people commenting in the thread.

94. diane - 21 February 2009


….oopsie,…and ..how could I forget the passe blanc….?

95. Madman in the Marketplace - 21 February 2009

Moyers this week:

BILL MOYERS: Welcome to the Journal. That great movie comic and professional curmudgeon W.C. Fields once said, “you can fool some of the people some of the time — and that’s enough to make a decent living.”

Watching the news unfold this week about Robert Allen Stanford — he prefers “Sir Allen” as befits a true Texas charlatan — I was reminded how right the old comedian was. As Stanford was allegedly bilking investors of billions of dollars, and making a decent living at it, he was also stroking the backs of Washington politicians causing them to purr like kittens as they licked his hand.

This story is the gift that just keeps on giving.

Sir Allen Stanford was knighted by the Governor-General of the Caribbean island of Antigua, off-shore headquarters for his alleged, multi-billion dollar con game. He bankrolled junkets to its balmy shores for several members of Congress including Texas Republican Senator John Cornyn and New York Democratic Congressman Charlie Rangel, chair of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee. Stanford partied with Nancy Pelosi and Bill Clinton at the Democratic National Convention last summer. And when Tom DeLay was still House Majority Leader, he flew the friendly skies in Stanford’s private jet 16 times in three years, including a trip to Houston for DeLay’s arraignment on money-laundering charges. I am not making this up!

Sir Allen also showered millions of dollars on political campaigns; much of it in the very year Congress was debating a bill to curb financial fraud. Two of the biggest recipients were Democratic Senator Bill Nelson and Republican John McCain, one of the original Keating Five. Three key Democrats on the Senate Banking Committee got checks from Stanford, too. Surprise, surprise — the reform bill never got out of the Senate.

According to the indispensable Center for Responsive Politics, over the last decade, Robert Allen Stanford spent nearly five million dollars lobbying the Senate and House.

Altogether, however, Stanford’s contributions were a spit in the bucket of what he’s alleged to have swindled and just a tiny slice of the multibillion dollar pie the lobbying business has become in Washington. Never an industry to let opportunity pass by, lobbyists already are jumping all over Obama’s economic stimulus, so much so the independent newspaper, “The Washington Examiner” newspaper, renamed the bill “The Lobbyist Enrichment Act.”

96. diane - 21 February 2009


Well, they should have allowed their housekkeepers to blog at least three hours out of their eight..like they do……………billing some poor sap $1,000, which is how they can afford to have a housekeeper, and pontificate as to how these slacker bum laborers need to be taught to own up to their obligations……..

97. marisacat - 21 February 2009

oh they were small construction or remodeling crews…

98. Madman in the Marketplace - 21 February 2009
99. diane - 21 February 2009

….getting ready to pour some funky strong brew from my ancient aluminum drip pot hon, have a cup a java?


100. marisacat - 21 February 2009

HA I retrieved my old Moka coffee maker and washed it this am….. it was on the shelves, lanquishing… but think i better stick with the old manual Melitta. I don’t have to watch it, like I would the Moka one, on the stove…

101. diane - 21 February 2009

Marisa (100)

manual…simplicity…Le Matte? or life sustaining……

I would bet the man in your thread photo has done more honest (and loving and caring) manual labor in his life than all of the politicians and lobbyist running the GAME, put together in a pot…and they are bombing his kindred via a remote control button…….while way to many of us…see not a thing wrong in that……….

102. Madman in the Marketplace - 21 February 2009

Life During Self-Defense

Ah, Israel, the holy land, light unto the nations! Barely a month after valiantly killing 1300 Gazans, maiming and wounding thousands more, and leaving the rest for dead in an open-air prison, Israel has stood up for its right to stand up to other people’s rights by forming its most hawkish possible government. A lesser nation might have wavered in the face of a merciless Palestinian onslaught of pleading and stump-waving, but Israel realizes this is a war between good and evil, right and wrong, civilization and those too poor to afford civilization. True, it’s far from a fair fight – Israel has a mere three hundred nuclear warheads while the Palestinians have countless rocks to throw – but somehow the pluck and determination of this scrappy regional superpower has prevailed over the deadly horde of orphans, beggars and amputees who threaten to live next to it.

103. marisacat - 21 February 2009

Just an ordinary stray NBC evening news on Friday… with one of the everlasting cohorts.. Richard Engle.. but it surely does sound like kabul, sooner rahter than later, may fall. Or at the least the Taliban/local fighter/jihadist/I don’t care who enter the city, I mean as a returning force en masse.

Several people said they had not seen the city so destabilised, so demoralised, with so many beggars and homeless and poor, in years.

Be nice if we ever caught on to what we have done (other than the war mongers, all of them, who do know). But no, missionary position all the way.

And Obama bombed some “militants” again, the other day.

104. Madman in the Marketplace - 21 February 2009

Bystanders become grist for pundit mill

While Wurzelbacher had something akin to a happy ending, Esterday’s experience in the grinder fell short of that. A waitress from Cedar Rapids, she was thrust into the presidential spotlight when National Public Radio reported that she had not been tipped after serving Clinton.

NPR later had to correct the report after it was revealed that the campaign left a $100 tip on a $157 check, but that failed to hold back a swarm of reporters and cameramen who descended on Esterday’s home and the diner where she works.

The entire episode left Esterday dizzied.

“You people are really nuts,” she told a New York Times reporter who called her home. “There’s kids dying in the war, the price of oil right now — there’s better things in this world to be thinking about than who served Hillary Clinton at Maid-Rite and who got a tip and who didn’t get a tip.”

105. marisacat - 21 February 2009

I read that Politico piece. They all got hit… and like Joe the P or not, his files were rifled thru. That was clear immediately. I don’t care what “side” did it. The Obama camp had a long standing pattern of working often to create a bigger srorm than their “mistakes”,., in that case Obama ran his mouth with Joe and they were scared to death of the “redistribute the wealth” comment he made at the end of the contact.

The scuttlebutt on Henrietta Hughes has sort of swirled more on the right… and the real lesson is that the (possibly, reading between the lines) the “fiath based” group that claims to have offered help that had been refused, was no help… some indications around that the apartment was never offered with initial 3 mos free.. AND some indications that the group demands you participate in their worship.

So classic. As we charge headlong into Faith Based Shit from On High.

106. Madman in the Marketplace - 21 February 2009

I hadn’t followed up on the Hughes thing … I assumed in my growing cynicism that the “help” would end up being bullshit.

This is more interesting:

Scientists dance their dissertations

107. marisacat - 21 February 2009

Well last I read, for whatever reason, the Republican couple, the Thompsons are sticking with her. She accepted the house the wife offered in La Belle and seem (again for whatever reason) to be unfazed by various things that have “surfaced”. And in hwat has surfaced, like the faith based group that came forward with a story of past refusal of help, it is murky.

But yes the right latched onto her story. Tho I have to say I HATED the Ft Myers rally. Way too revival meeting. But that sort of hsit bucks Barry up, i have noticed. As he wafts up up and away, off to bomb. To bless the little people another day…

108. NYCO - 21 February 2009

87. I see Joseph Tainter’s Collapse of Complex Societies has finally reached mainstream consciousness… in the Canadian media, anyway.

Tainter is still alive and teaching. I wonder what he thinks of all these world economy developments. Especially since his final conclusion (in 1988) was that collapse could no longer happen to any society unless all of them collapsed at the same time. Which appears to be what is happening at present.

109. NYCO - 21 February 2009

Another article where Tainter is quoted (and gets the last word).

Jared Diamond wrote a book on collapse, but it isn’t as good as his Guns, Germs and Steel, which is very probably the best modern book on the rise of civilizations. Tainter is the guy you want to read, as he comes up with a single overarching framework for understanding collapse that encompasses Diamond’s and pretty much everyone else’s theories.

Possibly the most unpopular part of Tainter’s theory, the one that would meet the most resistance, is his contention that while there may be technological magic bullets out there to discover and develop that will solve many of our current problems, we cannot possibly afford to discover and develop them: they cost much more than a complex society can afford to spend and still remain intact. In other words, investing more and more into green technology — the holy grail of most forward-thinking politicians and progressives today — will not save our civilization. Our complex civilization will collapse before we ever get near to realizing actual net benefits from our pursuit of these technologies.

Unfortunately, Tainter supports this contention quite compellingly with data and relevant research.

110. The lights are still on… « Marisacat - 21 February 2009

[…] a snip from a related comment of NYCO (which I agree with, and just grit my teeth when I hear that Obama and “his belief in […]

111. marisacat - 21 February 2009

NYCO, moved your two Tainter (Tainter Diamond) comments forward… and yours diane from 74….


New post…


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