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He can see Russia 5 July 2009

Posted by marisacat in 2010 Mid Terms, DC Politics, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Moscow.

MOSCOW – JULY 5: Souvenir matryoshka dolls, or Russian nesting dolls, painted with portraits of U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian president Dmitry Medvedev are displayed near Red Square on July 5, 2009 in Moscow, Russia. Barack Obama will arrive for his first visit to Russia as president on July 6. (Oleg Nikishin/Epsilon/Getty Images)

He can see Russia … from the Embassy window.

He’s taken two slams against Putin in the days running up to this visit.  I assume this means Ob thinks he out classes the old KGB man as a ”player”.

I love petty, stupid games between the Big Men on the Global Map.



1. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 July 2009

I think if you open up the Obama doll you get a smaller Clinton doll inside.

marisacat - 5 July 2009

I am unsure what you get…

marisacat - 5 July 2009

hmm just reading the updates at Politico. The whole family went.

The trip begins, as the Obamas depart from Andrews Air Force Base. The pool report from POLITICO’s Josh Gerstein:

A beautiful sunset with hues of lavender and gold was just disappearing as POTUS and stepped off the chopper at 8:30 followed by Malia Sasha and FLOTUS. Sasha held FLOTUS’s hand on the walk and POTUS held Malia’s, but the kids then bounded onto the plane themselves.

POTUS was tieless, dark jacket. FLOTUS in yellow sweater over green floral dress.

Time’s Michael Scherer also spotted grandma Marian Robinson in the entourage Also along Kaye Wilson, family friend and godmother to the Obamas’ kids.

A few minutes before the Obamas arrived a small contingent of what appeared to be Andrews AFB families lined up at the fenceline outside the terminal.

Taxi at 8:35 PM.

2. NYCO - 5 July 2009

Rather interesting tidbit from over the weekend…

While most in the United States were celebrating the Fourth of July holiday, a Russian immigrant living in New Jersey was being held on federal charges of stealing secret computer trading codes from a major New York-based financial institution. Authorities did not identify the firm, but sources say that institution is none other than Goldman Sachs.

The charges, if proven, are significant because the codes that the accused, Sergey Aleynikov, tried to steal are the secret sauce to Goldman’s automated stock and commodities trading business. Federal authorities contend the computer codes and related-trading files that Aleynikov uploaded to a German-based website help this major financial institution generate millions of dollars in profits each year.

The platform is one of the things that gives Goldman an advantage over the competition when it comes to the rapid-fire trading of stocks and commodities. Federal authorities say the platform quickly processes rapid developments in the markets and using secret mathematical formulas, allows the firm to make highly-profitable automated trades. …

The case against Aleynikov may explain why the New York Stock Exchange moved quickly last week to stop reporting program stock trading for its most active firms. Goldman was often at the top of the chart — far ahead of its competitors. It’s possible Goldman had asked the NYSE to stop reporting the number after it discovered that someone may have infiltrated the proprietary computer codes it uses.

NYCO - 5 July 2009

Here’s some analysis of the possible implications of the Goldman Sachs theft.

marisacat - 5 July 2009

well if one were to make a major hit on GS, that, to be frank, is a major hit on the US. So entwined they are, like lovers.

NYCO - 5 July 2009

It would explain why the FBI jumped on this ASAP.

It would also explain why the NY Stock Exchange had a very strange 15 minute extension of business on Thursday afternoon (the last day of trading before July 4 holiday). See here for an educated guess as to why that order was given.

marisacat - 5 July 2009

hmm from that link to Market Guardian:

[G]oint back to Matt Goldstein’s story. In a nutshell, on Friday, one Sergey Aleynikov was arrested at Newark airport by FBI agents, as he was coming back from a trip to Chicago (maybe visiting his new employer), on what are basically industrial espionage charges. Sergey, or Serge as his Linked-In account identifies him, was VP of equity strategy over at 85 Broad (or maybe 1 New York Plaza, his detailed Bloomberg Bio page has disappeared) had the following responsibilities at Goldman Sachs according to Linked-In:

• Lead development of a distributed real-time co-located high-frequency trading (HFT) platform.The main objective was to engineer a very low latency (microseconds) event-driven market data processing, strategy, and order submission engine. The system was obtaining multicast market data from Nasdaq, Arca/NYSE, CME and running trading algorithms with low latency requirements responsive to changes in market conditions.

• Implemented a real-time monitoring solution for the distributed trading system using a combination of technologies (SNMP, Erlang/OTP, boost, ACE, TibcoRV, real-time distributed replicated database, etc) to monitor load and health of trading processes in the mother-ship and co-located sites so that trading decisions can be prioritized based on congestion and queuing delays.

• Responsible for development of real-time market feed handlers, order processing engines and trading tools at a Quantitative Equity Trading revenue-making HFT desk.

If the allegations are true, it looks like Goldman’s hi-fi quant trading desk was thoroughly penetrated by a “spy”, and as readers will recall, Serge(y)’s description of his job duties mirrors what Mr. Ed Canaday conveniently provided to Zero Hedge as a description of Goldman’s SLP program. (Sources connected with the office of the United States Attorney have confirmed to Zero Hedge that Aleynikov was at one time or another a Goldman employee.”). snip

BooHooHooMan - 6 July 2009


It’s like they always say….

{dusting self off ,
having just fallen off the simpleton truck ..}

LOL – ….about “distributed real-time co-located high-frequency trading (HFT) platform(s)” ..and thieving..and Goldman…
—> ’cause that’s where the money is.”

Isn’t it great tho – the FBI managed to put down the sunblock momentarily , actually stopped installing bugs in beach umbrellas in prep for the FirstFam vaca up at Martha’s Vinyard next month? ….They actually found time over the Holiday weekend to pick up an alleged crook at Goldman Stanley? Who was not actually WITH The Firm?
Oh sweet Jesus in a Speedo! It’s a MIRACLE , Martha!

But not so fast tho-
The guy was probably given up by someone on the inside. Maybe someone afraid of getting pinched . .
Like Guvnah Fuckin Corzine here in Jersey. LOL.

‘t’sa shame.
“Russian Immigrant” will be the talking point associated with this instead , as will the bust associated with the 4th of July — anything more telling closer to home simply won’t do…
And Goldman gets to be portrayed as nationalist victim rather than the stateless Global perps – the organized crime syndicate they truly are.

Lest Alex WhoeverThe Fuckov
– Russian, you know-
showed up like horseshit on overalls – at Obama’s Not-Just Summer-Hug-But-Gonna-Have-To-Be-Some-Serious-Butt-Slappin-Followed-By-CPR for Corzine’s Survival appearance coming up July 18 at Rutgers….

{…raising eyebrow now..}

What a coinkydink – this coming right on the heels of Taibbi’s evisceration of GS as having engineered every bubble since the Great Deprression.

3. marisacat - 5 July 2009

No wonder Biden (that shit!) was out slobbering, doing thread bare CYA gyrations on the Sunday shows…

The Scariest Jobs Chart Ever

Henry Blodget |Jul. 3, 2009, 9:48 AM |comment30

The chart below, from Calculated Risk, shows the percentage decline in jobs from peak employment in all the recessions since World War 2.

We still haven’t quite eclipsed the 1948 drop, but we likely will in another month or two. And that will leave only the Great Depression to make us feel better about ourselves.

The good news in the chart, such as it is, is that employment can recover quickly once it finally turns. Anyone care to place a bet as to when that will be?

They have the chart.. and a bigger version they link to a Calculated Risk (with a brief analysis).

Nose dive.

4. catnip - 5 July 2009

An Obama nesting doll? Is NOTHING sacred?

I love nesting dolls.

Now I’m traumatized.

Madman in the Marketplace - 5 July 2009

oh, silly you … he makes everything MORE sacred? Didn’t you learn that valuable lesson reading the pwogosphere?

catnip - 5 July 2009

His little band of evangelizers is even more annoying than Christian fundies.

Madman in the Marketplace - 5 July 2009

and equally in touch with reality.

catnip - 5 July 2009

Like this guy:
Condemnation for bishop who called for gay people to ‘repent’

A good rebuttal:

Labour MEP Michael Cashman accused the Bishop of Rochester of being “selective” about which parts of the Bible he upheld. “When he calls for the closure of all the banks, finance houses and credit card companies because of what it says in the Bible about usury, then I’ll take him seriously,” he said. “Until then, unless he can say anything good, he should shut up.”


5. catnip - 5 July 2009

Alrighty then…what the hell is a guango?

I thought I might have been reading The Onion there for a minute.

6. catnip - 5 July 2009
7. marisacat - 5 July 2009

July 5, 2009

Saudis give nod to Israeli raid on Iran

Uzi Mahnaimi in Tel Aviv and Sarah Baxter

The head of Mossad, Israel’s overseas intelligence service, has assured Benjamin Netanyahu, its prime minister, that Saudi Arabia would turn a blind eye to Israeli jets flying over the kingdom during any future raid on Iran’s nuclear sites.

Earlier this year Meir Dagan, Mossad’s director since 2002, held secret talks with Saudi officials to discuss the possibility.

The Israeli press has already carried unconfirmed reports that high-ranking officials, including Ehud Olmert, the former prime minister, held meetings with Saudi colleagues. The reports were denied by Saudi officials.

“The Saudis have tacitly agreed to the Israeli air force flying through their airspace on a mission which is supposed to be in the common interests of both Israel and Saudi Arabia,” a diplomatic source said last week. snip

catnip - 5 July 2009

Are those sabers I hear a’rattling?

8. marisacat - 5 July 2009

The audacity of letting them die.

Chomsky on Democracy NOW!

[A]nd others see the world quite differently. For example, the newspaper New Nation in Bangladesh. There, we read, “It’s very telling that trillions have already been spent to patch up leading world financial institutions, while out of the comparatively small sum of $12 billion pledged in Rome earlier this year, to offset the food crisis, only $1 billion has been delivered. The hope that at least extreme poverty can be eradicated by the end of 2015, as stipulated in the UN’s Millennium Development Goals, seems as unrealistic as ever, not due to lack of resources but to a lack of true concern for the world’s poor.” That’s—they’re talking about approximately a billion people facing starvation, severe malnutrition, even 30 or 40 million of them in the richest country in the world. That’s a real crisis, and it’s getting much worse.

In this morning’s Financial Times, British business press, it’s reported that the World Food Program just announced that they’re cutting food aid and rations and also closing operations. The reason is that the donor countries have been cutting back in funding because of the fiscal crunch, and they’re slashing contributions. So, a very close connection between the horrendous food crisis and poverty crisis and the significant, but less significant, fiscal crisis. They’re ending up closing down operations in Rwanda, in Uganda, Ethiopia, many others. They have to—20 to 25 percent cut in budget, while food prices are rising, and the financial crisis, the general economic crisis, is bringing unemployment and cutting back remittances. That’s a major crisis. snip

catnip - 5 July 2009

“A hungry man is an angry man.”
– Bob Marley

But why focus on the actual roots of anti-imperialism when you can just bomb the unruly into oblivion whenever you feel like it?

marisacat - 5 July 2009

Well and Ob sent some big contributer to be the UN Liason for global food distribution, think it holds the level of an ambassadorship, and the office is in Rome.

At least Bill C (iirc) sent McGovern… who took it on with missionary zeal (and I am not a fan of either man).

9. catnip - 5 July 2009

Stay tuned for this week’s so-called progressive blog adopted protesters of the world nominees:

Scores killed in China protests

Iran and Honduras are SO last week already…

10. catnip - 5 July 2009
marisacat - 5 July 2009

Last heard from lucid was headed for the Cinque Terre… a rocky strip of coast in the Liguria… not far from Pisa.

But Let’s hear it for the protesters in Vicenza! They don’t want to be a way station for “killing Aghani children”. Works for me.


From the Reuters piece NYCO linked to above, on the GS guant systems raid. Or whatever it should be called:

[F]ederal authorities appear to believe Aleynikov may have had help. The German website that Aleynikov is accused of uploading the stolen information to is registered to a person in London.

While the case is still unfolding, there is more information to unearth about Aleynikov. For instance, it appears that he and his wife are competitive ballroom dancers–there are videos of them on YouTube.com.

And they dance!

11. catnip - 5 July 2009

Top judge: ‘use of drones intolerable’

The use of unmanned drones as weapons of war in conflicts around the world has been called into question by one of Britain’s most senior judges. Lord Bingham, until last year the senior law lord, said that some weapons were so “cruel as to be beyond the pale of human tolerance”.

In an interview with the British Institute of International and Comparative Law, Lord Bingham compared drones, which have killed hundreds of civilians in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Gaza, with cluster bombs and landmines.

His comments are bound to intensify calls for new international rules to protect civilian populations from arbitrary attacks launched by the pilotless craft.

Lord Bingham asked in the interview, which addressed the issue of the state being bound by the rule of law: “Are there, for example, and this goes to conflict, not post-conflict situations, weapons that ought to be outlawed? From time to time in the history of international law various weapons have been thought to be so cruel as to be beyond the pale of human tolerance. I think cluster bombs and landmines are the most recent examples.

“It may be – I’m not expressing a view – that unmanned drones that fall on a house full of civilians is a weapon the international community should decide should not be used.”

International lawyers also argue that air strikes using drones are state-sanctioned assassinations where the targeted suspected terrorist has no opportunity to defend the case against him.

12. marisacat - 6 July 2009

McNamara finally died. At last. If Meese goes soon it will be a profitable summer, imo.

BooHooHooMan - 6 July 2009

See Ya Bob. I know it’s too much to ask..
But I’d like to see Henry ,.Poppy or Cheney go.
A name with a big enough draw to watch Ob fall all over himself in tribute. Ob would have to oblige the Jews for Henry, the Bush’s for Poppy, and Ob’s own inner man-child for Cheney..(much like W in that Daddy issues/ overrated shit kind of way)…

13. NYCO - 6 July 2009

The symbiotic relationship between two kinds of poor people in NY (and in many other states I am sure):


marisacat - 6 July 2009

ugh.. the whole thing is such a tragedy…

We also know that the vast majority of people who go to prison in Essex and Franklin Counties are there for drug offenses, often the result of serious mental illness and addiction that at times leads to horrific violent offenses. This people are receiving minimal treatment while in prison and once released and sent back to New York City have little chance of succeeding and staying out of prison. Yet, hopefully those prisoners who family members care enough to visit them some 500 miles away will have a better life.

The system is broken. Many of those people now in prison should not be there. They should be getting treatment. Instead of spending so much on incarceration, we should be spending more mental health and drug treatment. We must also be spending more on fixing our broken communities. Not only are the broken communities in New York City generating these broken persons who are forced into long-term incarceration in the North Country, the broken communities in the North Country host these prisons as one of the limited employment opportunities up there.

14. marisacat - 6 July 2009

hmm rack ’em up…

US President Barack Obama and Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev reach a deal in Moscow to cut back their stockpiles of nuclear weapons.

For more details: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8136918.stm

I read over the weekend, the likely agreement is 1500 warheads per country.

Got enough boys?

15. marisacat - 6 July 2009

ob speaking in Russia. And it seems he is speed reading. Just dashing along. Maybe the teleprompter is in a marathon.

16. marisacat - 6 July 2009

via The Page:

Total of six U.S. troops die Monday in two roadside bombings. [Afghanistan]

17. lucid - 6 July 2009

So there was a Tuscany wide train strike today over what happened at Viareggio. Got stuck in Florence… I suppose that’s not all bad…

Intermittent Bystander - 6 July 2009

Go see the Fra Angelicos at the Museo di San Marco (a monastery), if you have another day there and have never seen them. Some of the frescos in the cells are so spare and minimal (to encourage meditation), their effect is nearly surreal, while the Museo proper has all sorts of intricate altarpieces with saints’ lives (and deaths).

And from the sublime to the despicable . . . I think you can see Savonarola’s hair shirt and miscellaneous relics, there, too.

18. Intermittent Bystander - 6 July 2009

Salutations, opera fans!

Is it summer yet?

The art-and-labor-intensive collaborative baby shower that has preoccupied me for a month or more took place and was a spectacular success, I’m happy to report. I liked having a good excuse to just toss the plot, politically, for a while, and I immersed myself in making an audio compilation of lullabyes from around the world. (Found lots of beautiful stuff and came to the conclusion that everybody needs lullabyes in their life, regardless of age. A little peace and harmony and tenderness and calm, before resting? What’s not to like?)

Not that one could escape the barking madness of politicians entirely, here in the Capital District of NYS. Doesn’t get much stupider than Albany, at the moment!

In other news, I saw my first in-the-wild moose on July 4, on the way home from a rural party. (It was all the stopped cars and people gazing into a field that alerted us. . . .) It’s probably the same young female spotted thereabouts mid-June, so it seems she has taken to residence in that nabe, but everybody (including the moose, the people whose meadow and forest it frequents, and all the stopped travelers enjoying the sighting) was very laid back, and cool.

Moosely video here.

marisacat - 6 July 2009

oo great news on the lullaby collection, IB… I bet that was appreciated. It sounds wonderful…

Moose need lullabies too I bet… 😉

Intermittent Bystander - 6 July 2009

I really enjoyed the project . . . it was just one of several, for the day, but it wound up growing to a double-CD set by the time I was done (partly thanks to an amazon gift card given to me last Christmas, by the mama-and-papa-to-be, which worked for downloads, too). There were just too many beautiful tunes to squeeze it all on to one. And thanks, yes, the music was enjoyed at the party and set a nice mood, and people were sent home with copies to use and peruse in future.

I’m still in the process of gathering together lyrics, translations, and artist websites for Volume 2, but in the process of writing to artists and record companies for the lyrics to Volume 1 (to put in a binder as a gift for one of the song-loving grandmas-to-be, as well as the parents), I made a couple of new friends. So far it’s Artists–4, Record Companies–0 for coming through with lyrics or other documentation in response to my humble e-mailed requests. Touching how pleased the artists were to be contacted and appreciated; irritating to see how few of the commercial distributors of their music could be bothered even to reply.

The moose was just delightful, with wildflowers and woods and pond surrounding. She was alert to and curious about the humans, but not alarmed, nor were the people . . . it was quite a restful vision altogether. I don’t think she would have minded a little crooning serenade!

19. Intermittent Bystander - 6 July 2009

Sausage servings for the vets:

New GI benefits vary widely by state

When the new GI Bill kicks in Aug. 1, the government’s best-known education program for veterans will get the biggest boost since its World War II-era creation. But the benefit is hardly the “Government Issue,” one-size-fits-all standard the name implies.

In fact, depending on where service members and veterans decide to attend college, they could receive a full ride, or very little.

An Associated Press review of state-by-state benefits under the new bill shows huge discrepancies in the amount veterans can receive.


The new GI Bill covers full in-state undergraduate tuition and fees at any public college. That’s far more generous than the old GI Bill, which provides a monthly stipend that is the same from state to state.

But Congress also wanted to help veterans attend often pricier private schools. So the new bill offers them an amount equal to the tuition at the most expensive public college in the same state.

That penalizes veterans going to private colleges in states that have kept their public university tuition low.

Californian vets, in particular, are getting screwed by the formula, and Massachusetts vets will also get little help.

marisacat - 6 July 2009

I can’t get a hold of it as it is so labyrinthine… but along with the idea earlier (Obama), shelved (Obama), that veterans should bill back to secondary insurance…. it sounds like out here, a lot more vets will be shuffled off to state aid, Medi Cal. At a time when the whole thing is in peril… The really big cuts in Medi Cal (and Medic Aid) were several years ago. Anythign more is bone… plus moving older ill “non combat” related veterans to Medi Cal will not work.

Just my view on the mess……

Intermittent Bystander - 6 July 2009

Go to Dartmouth, in NH, and you could get $25K/yr from the feds. In Texas, you could get $20K for a private college, ’cause that’s what the most expensive public school would charge. But go to a private school in Mass, and you’d get about $2,200. In California, you’d get nothing (because apparently Cali charges “fees,” and not “tuition” at the public schools, so to match top tuition = $0.)

“What should be a simple number has turned into some kind of Frankenstein-like monster that nobody will be able to understand,” said Terry Hartle, senior vice president of the American Council on Education.

20. Madman in the Marketplace - 6 July 2009
21. Madman in the Marketplace - 6 July 2009

Sen. Cornyn booed at Capitol “tea party”

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn drew boos from a crowd outside the Texas Capitol this afternoon as he spoke at a “tea party” rally organized by the Texas office of Americans for Prosperity.

Cornyn was booed at the start and close of his remarks, which assailed actions in Washington; there were no boos while he awarded a Purple Heart to a Copperas Cove resident injured in Iraq in 2006.

“You’re the problem,” a crowd member hollered.

Another crowd member yelled that Cornyn voted for the initial federal bailout of Wall Street approved by Congress last year, the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

Cornyn was the first elected official to speak, though Gov. Rick Perry and others are expected to have turns. UPDATE, 4:04 p.m.: Perry drew scattered boos, notably from crowd members aware of his advocacy of toll roads to relieve traffic congestion.

22. Madman in the Marketplace - 6 July 2009

Hike up those sagging Everlasts, Harry!:

Oh, the burdens of a Democratic supermajority.

After eight months in limbo, Al Franken is poised to be sworn in as the 60th Democratic senator — cause for celebration among party activists, the lefty blogosphere and his fellow Democrats planning to give him a hero’s welcome at Tuesday’s caucus lunch.

But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) isn’t feeling especially giddy — and he’s trying to bridge the gap between his herd-the-cats daily reality and rising expectations that he’s just been appointed overlord of a filibuster-proof Democratic kingdom.

“What’s really changed for us?” asked a leadership aide, hours after former Sen. Norm Coleman (R-Minn.) capitulated to Franken.

“Nothing, really. Except there’s a lot more pressure.”

For his part, Reid is doing his best to tamp down expectations that Franken’s seating gives him license to trample the 40 Republicans in the upper chamber.

“We have 60 votes on paper,” he told The New York Times on Thursday. “But we cannot bulldoze anybody; it doesn’t work that way. My caucus doesn’t allow it. And we have a very diverse group of senators philosophically. I am not this morning suddenly flexing my muscles.”

Ooooo, that’s FIGHTIN’ HARRY to you!

Oh, and what does Mighty Mite think?

Markos Moulitsas, founder of Daily Kos, challenged Reid immediately on the day of Coleman’s concession.

“Psst, Harry? You’ve got 60 Dems,” he blogged. “No more excuses.”

Better not criticize too much Mighty Mite, or you may have to ban yourself.

You can’t say many of us didn’t warn you … YEARS ago. Poor widdle pwoggie, stamping your little bought-and-sold foot.

Intermittent Bystander - 6 July 2009

Flashback! Woo-hoo! I think I’m seeing trails!


Forget it, Jake. No bannings at risk. Just time for another spunky catcall to the home-team manager within the cosy, adorable, self-aggrandizing cult context of organized sports.

moiv - 6 July 2009

On a lark, I went over there and searched for “Vichy Dems” in comments, with 62 results in the past six months.

Here’s a sample.

As Robert Reich says: (225+ / 0-)

Recommended by:
Lupin, JekyllnHyde, Alumbrados, Ed in Montana, jmart, coral, Chi, copymark, SarahLee, Dave the Wave, BigOkie, Sherri in TX, Pescadero Bill, meg, Byron from Denver, SallyCat, Heart of the Rockies, PKinTexas, Zinman, conchita, Dazy, Shadan7, sfgb, NCYellowDog, Agathena, SkiBumLee, Dont Just Stand There, moiv, Larry Bailey, UK LibDem Dave, ClickerMel, high uintas, Cardinal96, wader, jdmorg, dejavu, oldjohnbrown, Dallasdoc, gmb, Bluedoc, waf8868, riverlover, forrest, dkmich, DMiller, Oaktown Girl, ybruti, side pocket, kfred, Hillbilly Dem, Wife of Bath, Deward Hastings, vacantlook, wolverinethad, Big Tex, joanneleon, chumley, paige, ExStr8, marina, radarlady, 3goldens, salmo, UFOH1, wmc418, David R, CTPatriot, disrael, Jersey Girl, electricgrendel, frandor55, Simplify, Brooke In Seattle, zombie, jimreyn, Fury, Burned, rlochow, cassidy3, tidewatcher249, Phil S 33, Cyber Kat, mikolo, joy221, stillrockin, viscerality, jiml, ksingh, gwilson, Nightprowlkitty, Do Tell, vigilant meerkat, Kimball Cross, Yellow Canary, KenBee, fromer, Son of a Cat, srvaughn, Hobbitfoot, KozmoD, StrayCat, 4Freedom, nilocjin, imabluemerkin, justalittlebitcrazy, real world chick, mcmom, el cid, ER Doc, istari5th, emsprater, means are the ends, Jbeaudill, shaharazade, Eikyu Saha, Picot verde, markthshark, NonnyO, seabos84, AmericanRiverCanyon, lightfoot, high coup haiku, xaxado, blue armadillo, camlbacker, DocbytheBay, ColoTim, moosely2006, yoduuuh do or do not, Nespolo, HCKAD, jayden, stratocasterman, snowshoeblue, chicago jeff, Uberbah, rogereaton, Rumarhazzit, leonard145b, Badabing, Predictor, VA Breeze, MissyH, GANJA, Dem in the heart of Texas, Ms Citizen, Phil N DeBlanc, zerone, calibpatriot, blueman1, elwior, jamess, dewley notid, left my heart, Snarky McAngus, Jeff Y, mofembot, luckylizard, priceman, Quilldriver, magicsister, In her own Voice, satanicpanic, JonBarleycorn, cameoanne, multilee, J Ash Bowie, Texanomaly, rbutters, litoralis, dark daze, mkor7, ProgressiveTokyo, obiterdictum, chinchin, RationalThoughtProcess, IngeniousGirl, blueocean, Little Flower, fernan47, Larsstephens, BigVegan, ppl can fly, awcomeon, p gorden lippy, miss SPED, ArtSchmart, roadbear, veracityus, Hamsun, GeeBee, Interceptor7, chrome327, Crabby Abbey, wvmom, newlymintedjerseygirl, ItsSimpleSimon, Puddytat, Mariken, quagmiremonkey, DudleyMason, dmet, angstall, allenjo, ozsea1, StateofEuphoria, oklahoma cherokee, Susipsych, island in alabama, smallgal, Outraged Mom, mydailydrunk, The Creator, thethinveil, susanala, incognita, muddy boots, junipercussion, dakinishir, tardis10, MarketFarces, MinistryOfTruth, beforedawn, Wom Bat, lincoln deschain

“the concrete is being poured right now” on health care for the next generation (i.e., the next 30 years). Now is not the time to be milquetoasty and kowtow to the GOP and Vichy Dems.


“Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove.” — P.G. Wodehouse (via Bertie Wooster)

by BenGoshi on Mon Jun 22, 2009 at 06:25:41 AM CDT

BTW, the cleaners called, and they said they got the stain out of your prophet robe.

marisacat - 6 July 2009

😳 sorry moiv… you languished in moderation, I had fallen sound a sleep…

Out now!

Madman in the Marketplace - 7 July 2009

good … my wild unkempt hair and “The End is Near” sign looks incomplete without the robe to complete the ensemble.

catnip - 7 July 2009

Better not criticize too much Mighty Mite, or you may have to ban yourself.

I’ll bet you’re a member of that sanctimonious womens’ studies set too. Admit it. Blasphemer!

23. Madman in the Marketplace - 6 July 2009

Chris Floyd:

In a surprise move, Vice President Joe Biden signaled that the United States would not intervene to stop Iran from launching a “pre-emptive” attack on Israel. Biden’s declaration came during an appearance on the ABC news-talk show, “This Week,” with former Bill Clinton aide George Stephanopoulos. Here are Biden’s exact words, as reported by the New York Times:

“Look, we cannot dictate to another sovereign nation what they can and cannot do when they make a determination — if they make a determination — that they’re existentially threatened and their survival is threatened by another country.”

It is of course well known that Israel possesses a formidable nuclear arsenal — which it developed illegally, in secret, “rogue-state” style. It is also well-known that an Israeli attack on Iran is a constant, open topic of discussion — and advanced planning and war-gaming — at the highest levels of the Israeli government and military.

Given the fact that a nuclear-armed nation is openly discussing and planning an attack on their country, the Iranians could quite logically “make a determination that they are existentially threatened and their survival is threatened by another country.”

Thus, by Biden’s logic, it would be quite legitimate for the Iranians to mount an attack to “take out the nuclear program” in Israel, given the ever-present existential threat this poses to their survival. And the United States, according to Biden, would not do anything to stop such an attack, because Washington “cannot dictate to another sovereign nation” what it can do when it feels threatened to such a degree.

This then is the actual, logical meaning of the actual words that Biden used on Sunday: If Iran’s Supreme Leader “made a determination” that his nation’s existence was in peril from attack by a very hostile nuclear-armed nation, then he would be justified in taking pre-emptive action to save his people.

This Hobbesian, dog-eat-dog logic could also apply to any other potential conflict in the world. Any nation whose leaders declare is under “existential threat” is thereby justified in any pre-emptive attack to quell the threat. That’s it. That’s all it takes. That is the quintessence of the philosophy of international statecraft voiced by Biden on Sunday.

But in practice, of course, this justification for military aggression is not meant to apply universally. It is reserved solely for the United States — indeed, it is the very heart of the U.S. government’s officially promulgated “National Security Doctrine”” — and for any favored American clients and allies. Israel is the prime example of the latter category; any and all acts of aggression by its government are always justified — and usually praised to high heaven — by Washington. But this exception also applies to other nations whose aggression serves America’s agenda at any given time: Ethiopia’s American-aided invasion of Somalia, for example, a brutal act of aggression that killed thousands, displaced hundreds of thousands, radicalized thousands, exacerbated sectarian strife, and sparked off a new, vicious civil war — all in service of America’s Terror War “regime change” agenda.

The machtpolitik philosophy enunciated so clearly by Biden underlies the Terror War operations being continued — and expanded — by his boss, Barack Obama, in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and now, once more, in Somalia. Obama continually affirms that America is under an “existential threat” if Afghanistan is not conquered and the “recalcitrant tribes” of Pakistan not bombed and droned into submission.

But nations outside the golden circle of imperial favor are not allowed to make such claims — even if nuclear weapons really are aimed at them, by governments who really do call for their destruction. Thus once again we see American leaders trying to justify their own (and their favorites’) military aggression by referring to some grand, universal principle — which they immediately subvert by failing to apply it universally.

Yet it is certain that no one in the upper reaches of the American power structure will note — or even recognize — the howling illogic of Biden’s position. Why should they? It is their own underlying, animating principle, the very air they breathe: whatever We and Ours do is good, is true, is right, is righteous.

marisacat - 6 July 2009

couple of fucked religious nations. One with a lot more of a future (Iran) than the other one. I just read of a pitched battle … in I forget which town in Israel (think Tel Aviv). Orthodox came out to protest (and pitch a battle) over a new parking lot. That will service patrons on — GOD HELP US — SATURDAY.

24. catnip - 7 July 2009

Pope calls for “world political authority”

VATICAN CITY – Pope Benedict on Tuesday called for a “world political authority” to manage the global economy and for more government regulation of national economies to pull the world out of the current crisis and avoid a repeat.

The pope’s call for a re-think of the way the world economy is run came in new encyclical which touched on a number of social issues but whose main connecting thread was how the current crisis has affected both rich and poor nations.

Called “Charity in Truth,” parts of the encyclical appeared bound to upset conservatives because of its underlying rejection of unbridled capitalism and unregulated market forces, which he said had led to “thoroughly destructive” abuse of the system.

The pope said every economic decision has a moral consequence and called for “forms of redistribution” of wealth overseen by governments to help those most affected by crises.


Meanwhile, back at the Vatican bank (b)ranch…

25. marisacat - 7 July 2009

new post:


……… 🙄 ………….

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