Sunday, November 30, 2008

Trapped in the past

I'm not at all averse to a bailout of the Big Three, hell I'd rather save a manufacturer than an Insurance Company any day -- but here in a nutshell is the problem with the American Auto Industry -- and perhaps, America in particular:

Across town at Langley Motor Co., the local GM dealership, salesman Eddie W. Striblin sat in an empty showroom that seemed trapped in another era. The only car on the floor was a black-and-gold 1977 Trans Am in mint condition. The Marshall Tucker Band played on the radio.

Striblin predicted that, despite all their troubles, the Big Three would survive somehow. Other companies may have a better business model, he argued, but no one delivers the romance of the road like the Americans.

"Let me ask you a question," he said leaning over a clean desk. "You ever heard of anybody braggin' on a '57 Honda?"

Okay, first of all -- I expect a LOT of people to be braggin' on their 1985 Honda Accord with 200,000 miles on it.

Second, of all, please show me the person still driving a 1985 Chevy Citation?

"The Romance of the Road" has helped to get us into this choking mess. How many years did we put up with people bragging about Hummers & things with HEMI engines? Telling some suburban CPA he just HAD to buy a big ass pickup truck?


(found via Kevin Drum)


Fresh off saying "I guess it's okay for a President to be Smart", Broder writes a column devoted to an elementary school level of Federalism, and a recognition, sixty years after the fact, that we're all Keynesians now.

Next up, Broder discusses the merits of the 21st Amendment.

The Rundown

Top 10 George W. Bush pictures.

All fine, yes. But how could you narrow it down really?

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Proving Ordination Doesn't Automatically Lead To Enlightenment

Another one track mind in the Catholic church proves just how fallible the one-track mind can be:

Parishioners of St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Modesto have been told they should consider going to confession if they voted for Barack Obama, because of the president-elect's position condoning abortion.

"If you are one of the 54 percent of Catholics who voted for a pro-abortion candidate, you were clear on his position and you knew the gravity of the question, I urge you to go to confession before receiving communion. Don't risk losing your state of grace by receiving sacrilegiously," the Rev. Joseph Illo, pastor of St. Joseph's, wrote in a letter dated Nov. 21.

Nice, huh? Vote republican...or else. In fairness to this priest's boss, the Bishop of the Stockton diocese, doesn't necessarily agree with Father Illo:

But the Most Rev. Stephen Blaire, bishop of the Stockton, Calif., Diocese, said he disagrees with Illo. He said Catholics should not feel compelled to disclose how they voted to their priest.

Blaire said Catholics who carefully weighed many issues and settled on a candidate, such as Obama, who was supportive of abortion rights, were not in need of confession. He said confession would be necessary "only if someone voted for a pro-abortion or pro-choice candidate -- if that's the reason you voted for them."

"Our position on pro-life is very important, but there are other issues," Blaire said. "No one candidate reflects everything that we stand for. I'm sure that most Catholics who voted were voting on economic issues.

"There were probably many priests, and I suspect many bishops, who voted for Obama."

Apparently the boss is wrong. More from Illo, who apparently places greater value on the life of a fetus than the life of the mother, the tortured, the hungry, the uninsured, and the souls of the war dead:

Illo's letter states, "Many Catholics voted for such pro-abortion candidates thinking that their good positions on other issues, such as the war or health care, outweighed their deplorable stand on abortion."

Basic human rights don't matter for the living according to Illo--you have more value as an unborn fetus. Hate to hear what he has to say about the right to be happy.

Banned Words of 2009™ (Cut! Snip! Slash! Edition)

Because it's never too early to put the world on notice, we started compiling the Banned Words of 2009™ list early this year. That said, we've got to face facts. The list in its current incantation is just too long. It's unreasonable to ban almost forty words, so we've got to cut, snip, and slash with an eye toward December 31st.

To that end, choose from the list the three words/phrases you feel must absolutely be banned (and those who utter them shot into the sun) in 2009. I'll tote them up and we'll get this baby down to a nice neat ten.
  1. Superdelegate
  2. Bitter
  3. Presumptuous
  4. Denounce/Disavow/Renounce/Reject/Repudiate
  5. Surge
  6. PUMA
  7. Lunchpail voter
  8. Subprime
  9. Miley Cyrus
  10. Clinton (either of em), Lanny Davis, Harold Ickes, Howard Wolfson
  11. Vet/Vetted/Vetting
  12. POW
  13. Staycation
  14. Hockey Mom
  15. Main Street, not Wall Street
  16. Bipartisan
  17. Maverick
  18. Bailout
  19. Fannie/Freddie
  20. Game-changer/changing
  21. Optics/Metrics
  22. "My friends.."
  23. Joe Sixpack, Joe Lieberman, Joe The Plumber
  24. Race Card
  25. Robocall
  26. Cougar
  27. Poll ("Tracking" or otherwise)
  28. Socialist
  29. ACORN/Ayers
  30. Nicole Wallace/Rick Davis/Steve Schmidt
  31. Center-Right Nation
  32. Gotcha Journalism
  33. Bradley Effect
  34. You Betcha!
  35. Pit Bull/lipstick/lipstick on a pig (or pit bull)
  36. Islamofacist
  37. Ground Game
  38. Straight Talk
  39. Govern from the center

Because This Will Never EVER Get Old...

Peggy Noonan, November 4, 2004:
I do not know what the Democratic Party spent, in toto, on the 2004 election, but what they seem to have gotten for it is Barack Obama. Let us savor.
Happy Thanksgiving, you batty old propagandist.



Jimmy Carter had "the Peanut"
Ronald Reagan had "the Jellybeans"
George H.W. Bush had "the pork rinds"
Bill Clinton had "Cheeseburgers"
George W. Bush had "Pretzels" (and please have more)
Dick Cheney had "puppies"

Now Barack Obama has doubled up. First he has "Sweet Potato Pie" (which I've never had but I imagine is similar to pumpkin only with less cinnamon, but I'm just guessing) and now...

"The Chocolate Chip Cookie" aka the world's perfect food. And it is centered right here in my town (who needs good mass transit?)

Want an example of the change Barack Obama is bringing to the country? Check out cookie sales at Baby Boomers Cafe in Des Moines.

Ever since word spread about the president-elect and his family's fondness for Baby Boomers' chocolate chunk cookies, the small downtown restaurant can't bake them fast enough...

...Obama's main office was next door to Boomers, and his staff made the cafe a second home.

His daughters, 10-year-old Malia and 7-year-old Sasha, would stop by with their mother, Michelle, and Maxfield said they loved the cookies. During a stop in Iowa last month, Obama's staff ordered about a dozen cookies for the family. That's when word got out about their affection for the confection.

(AP Photo/Kevin Sanders)

No Hang Around You Zone


"It is not just Murdoch (and everybody else at News Corp.'s highest levels) who absolutely despises Bill O'Reilly, the bullying, mean-spirited, and hugely successful evening commentator," Wolff wrote, "but [Fox News chief executive] Roger Ailes himself who loathes him. Success, however, has cemented everyone to each other."

"The embarrassment can no longer be missed," Wolff wrote, in another section of the book. "He mumbles even more than usual when called on to justify it. He barely pretends to hide the way he feels about Bill O'Reilly. And while it is not that he would give Fox up -- because the money is the money; success trumps all -- in the larger sense of who he is, he seems to want to hedge his bets."

Imagine how they feel about Hannity? Who is even worse.

Friday, November 28, 2008

"They kept shopping"

Suddenly, witnesses and the police said, the [Wal-Mart] doors shattered, and the shrieking mob surged through in a blind rush for holiday bargains. One worker, Jdimytai Damour, 34, was thrown back onto the black linoleum tiles and trampled in the stampede that streamed over and around him. Others who had stood alongside Mr. Damour trying to hold the doors were also hurled back and run over, witnesses said.

Some workers who saw what was happening fought their way through the surge to get to Mr. Damour, but he had been fatally injured, the police said. Emergency workers tried to revive Mr. Damour, a temporary worker hired for the holiday season, at the scene, but he was pronounced dead an hour later at Franklin Hospital Medical Center in Valley Stream...

“When they were saying they had to leave, that an employee got killed, people were yelling, ‘I’ve been on line since yesterday morning,’ ” Ms. Cribbs told The Associated Press. “They kept shopping.”
Really, you make me sick.

And who is "You"?
“I’ve heard other people call this an accident, but it is not,” he said. “Certainly it was a foreseeable act.”
Wal-Mart. The most arrogant, hyper-aggressive, destructive retailer in America. The bane of American downtowns, mom-and-pop stores, any human being trying to earn a decent wage, and any manufacturer trying to earn a decent margin.
“When they were saying they had to leave, that an employee got killed, people were yelling, ‘I’ve been on line since yesterday morning,’ ” Ms. Cribbs told The Associated Press. “They kept shopping.”
The Wal-Mart shoppers at the Green Acres Mall, who lined up like pigs at the trough, to stuff themselves on holiday "bargains" as they purged their own souls. Hope that $9 "Incredible Hulk" dvd was worth it.
Ugly shopping scenes, a few involving injuries, have become commonplace during the bargain-hunting ritual known as Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, when America’s anxious retailers say they finally turn a profit for the year.
The media, who, year in and year out, assist Wal-Mart and other equally putrid retailers in inciting such "ugly shopping scenes" by breathlessly trumpeting "Black Friday" as though it were some sort of heartwarming quintessential American ritual rather than yet another in a long line of lurid consumerist spectacles.

To the family of Mr. Damour,

I'm sorry for your loss. You need a lawyer and a good one. I'm not competent to take your case, but if I was, I would take it pro-bono.

Imagine this potential conundrum

You're, like Atrios, a progressive blogger in Philly (the Motown of liberal blogging), it is 2010 and somehow your choice of U.S. Senator is between Arlen Specter and Tweety Matthews?

That is a the evil of two lessers indeed.

Heckuva Job

I know conservatives find Robert Fisk distasteful. Undoubtedly because he's so right so often -- and they can't have that.

The collapse of Afghanistan is closer than the world believes. Kandahar is in Taliban hands – all but a square mile at the centre of the city – and the first Taliban checkpoints are scarcely 15 miles from Kabul. Hamid Karzai's deeply corrupted government is almost as powerless as the Iraqi cabinet in Baghdad's "Green Zone"; lorry drivers in the country now carry business permits issued by the Taliban which operate their own courts in remote areas of the country.

It's starting to sound like we've built ourselves another Generalissimo Chang on sixty years after the fall of the last one. And we've built a few in between.

Nice try "Moran"

Hey Chuckles Krauthammer, paid attention the last eight years?

The ruling Democrats have a choice: Rescue this economy to return it to market control. Or use this crisis to seize the commanding heights of the economy for the greater social good. Note: The latter has already been tried. The results are filed under "History, ash heap of."

No matter what else you could say about Thanksgiving

THAT was the worst collective day of Football ever. The closest game was still a 25-point rout.

Although Wall-E is still great to watch.

Hope your Thanksgiving went swimmingly.

Thursday, November 27, 2008


Last Thanksgiving I was feeling down due to a little personal calamity which has since resolved itself to my satisfaction. Despite feeling like I wanted to go Sylvia Plath on myself, I accepted an invite from my friend to attend a Thanksgiving Day feast at the home of one of his friends, where I found myself seated around a table with twenty-five perfect strangers. It turned out to be a truly fun holiday. Before dinner, in lieu of grace, the hostess asked each of us to tell the others what we were thankful for. I thought this was a really nice tradition and so I'm inviting you to do the same in comments.

Here's what I'm thankful for this year (not in any particular order):

1. Our president-elect
2. His stunning and powerful first lady
3. The sweet, smart, and slightly eccentric R
4. Having a decent job in a truly crappy economic environment
5. MedSnack, dark chocolate, and red wine
6. Left Blogistan, which keeps me laughing (and sane)
7. My friends
8. And yeah, even my loony family

Damn, this is awesome

You have to be impressed by this:

The girls, who will be attending the prestigious Sidwell Friends School, also will be expected to do their homework as usual. Although, the president-elect said, Malia has her eye on a special spot to write important papers.

When she came back from her White House visit recently, she told her dad that she plans to work at the desk in the Lincoln bedroom.

Obama, who is known to be an avid reader of Lincoln history, said his daughter told him "I'm going to sit at that desk, because I'm thinking that will inspire big thoughts."

Although some of George W. Bush rubbed off on Obama when you read the whole report on the interview. Michelle's going to have to remind him he's smart.

For you sky watchers...

Something to do this evening with your family...other than discuss who never loved you enough (or is that more of a Christmas/Hannukkah/Kwaanza tradition?)...


It's not just families that are getting together this Thanksgiving week. The three brightest objects in the night sky — Venus, Jupiter and a crescent moon — will crowd around each other for an unusual group shot.

If you have a telescope this should be about the easiest time you'll ever have seeing three things to see and show your relatives before you all freeze your asses off.

The next time all three will be so close in the sky will be November 2052.

If you want to look at another great sky object tomorrow morning rather than shop, Saturn will be in the sky ... the crown jewel of amateur skywatching. There are few people that don't go "Wow" the first time they see Saturn in a telescope.

Happy Thanksgiving

A friend and I are cooking a turkey and taking a stab at making the traditional Thanksgiving meal.

This could get frightening.

Good luck to all of you doing the same today.

And for those of you in Detroit, pretend the team in silver and blue is the Bears.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Pride of the University of Tennessee, ladies and gentlemen

Ernest T. Bass, Esq. would be the world's dumbest law professor, if not for that middling Hugh Hewitt!

I feel a little sorry for Martin Luther King — his enormous accomplishments got less attention than they deserved because of the cult of Malcolm X, and now he’s being eclipsed by Barack Obama.

Yeah, I shall contemplate this in January during the National Holiday named after him.

(Photo from here)

Well, that's nice and all

I'm sure the Chuck Norris Blog is the site of all manner of poorly acted drivel.

But I miss the days where I could follow the political rants of Pat Sajak. Sadly, lost to history (sort of).

But still, we have Wink Martindale, as a consolation. Tick Tack D'oh!

If Bob Eubanks turns out to be a douchebag too, I will be crushed.


Damn, you Michael Moore!

I thought this was the job of Ricky Williams' agent?

Astronauts busy collecting recycled urine samples

Stupid reality

Looks like I picked the wrong day to be too busy to blog much.

I'm going to be really busy the next couple weeks as well.

So I hope Jonah Goldberg & Kathryn Lopez will wait until Mid-December to announce their intent to marry.

John Derbyshire, please postpone that indecent exposure arrest until Just before Christmas.

Bill Kristol, I'm begging you. Do not get exposed as a Nigerian e-mail scammer until around New Years Eve.

Confederate Yankee, please hold off your intended trip to the Hawaiian Vital Statistics Office/Secret Hawaiian Mosque field trip by riding your tricycle across the Pacific until the Winter Solstice at least.

Thank you.

Oh dear, oh dear dear dear

Is Bill O'Reilly's producer also working for Channel 2?

(picture from here)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

...And another thing.

It seems to me we haven't been hearing enough about how Clinton administration policies got us into the mess that is our economy. What's wrong with the nut jobs on the right?

You're doing a heckuva job, Brownie.

As we see our President-elect select people exceedingly qualified for the jobs for which they are nominated, I am hopeful for the future--notwithstanding the mess the Obama administration faces. For the record I will not miss the hacks Bush appointed to positions for which they were supremely unqualified. Good riddance to Brownie and everyone like him.

"Built to Self-Destruct"

Best thing I've read this week. A taste:
‘The Lomas Financial Corp. is a perfectly hedged financial institution: It loses money in every conceivable interest-rate environment.’
And I'm posting this without comment (which doesn't mean that I'm posting it without nearly killing myself in an attempt to choke back laughter).

(Apologies for the prolonged absence. Have just experienced the busiest three weeks I've had in literally years.)

Happy Thanksgiving to all you Hegemaniacs.

h/t Exposito

Oh yes...

This will make the moment all the more "meaningful" right?

Stay tuned for the Democrat vs. Republican Chess Set.

King - Obama
Queen - Hillary Clinton
Bishop - Fuck, no -- just Islamic Imams baby!
Knights - An Al Gore and a Ed Bentley driving Hybrids
Rooks - A Pair of Windpowered Turbines

All Pawns

A Benefit of the Economic Downturn

Mel Brooks' dreams of "Spaceballs: The Musical" have been crushed.


Yes, the CEOs of the Big Three flew their private planes to Washington, but that was a pittance compared to all the bonuses attempted and parties thrown by the Financial Institutions and Investment firms while they were getting hundreds of billions from the tax payers. Yet, who got worse publicity?

And now poor Buick, the world's "most trendy" car manufacturer, at least when you could still get yourself one of those "cigarette lighters" in the dash, has had to cancel its long-time relationship with Tiger Woods. Thereby losing the one Buick driver under 35 that didn't inherit a "Skylark" in a grandparent's will.

On the other hand wastrel financial giants AIG and Citibank see absolutely no reason to stop their sports endorsements which costs in the hundreds of millions. Because, of course, every person on Earth (non-American division) sees a Manchester United jersey and says, "Having just woken from my long-term coma, I will now place to put all my investments with AIG, what's good enough for Ronaldo is good enough for me" (fitting because he's very good at taking a dive).

(pic from here)

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]


Space Technology working for you!

After several days without luck, astronauts finally ran a successful test on equipment that turns urine into drinking water

Monday, November 24, 2008

Bush Style

Our current President likes to assure us that notwithstanding the massive bailout of the American banking system, he is a believer in "free-market capitalism." He says so without a hint of irony while ordinary citizens (read: victims of "free-market capitalsim") are allowed to eat cake.

I've been thinking a lot about it lately--not how to fix the mess we're in because I am just a simple person living in Des Moines trying to beat out a living as a lawyer--but how it is that the moron-in-chief can make such pronouncements in a serious way. But really it makes perfect sense because we're not used to having much but the leftovers from the people at the top, right? And in the words of Barbara Bush: just give us some warm food and a roof over our heads, we're not used to that sort of thing so it really is working out quite nicely for us. Think really about how difficult it must be to adjust from seven figure income to just six. Now that's suffering.

And remember the brand of "free market capitalism" Bush learned from his father and father's friends: use your family name to borrow money to make money and even if you lose money someone will be there to pick up the pieces. And even if you are loaded, use public money to finance a public works to help fat cats get even more money. So if you find yourself scratching your head, don't fret too long because it all makes perfect sense: help those at the top, they need it the most.

McNabb also has a Waterloo

I hope it also wasn't the hemorrhoids that caused his poor performance.

Yes, that's a long-way to go for a Napoleon joke.

Oh well, it's not as good a "your career is over picture as Y.A. Tittle.

(photo via Will Bunch)

When all around you

Lose their jobs, their life savings, their houses -- or perhaps, God forbid, this all happens to you -- remember this.

Somehow, Kathryn Lopez retains her job as an Editor at National Review. An editor who can neither spell, nor write a complete sentence.

But then again, with this powerful combination of no skill or talent George W. Bush got two terms.

Proving for once and for all, there is no God -- or if there is one, he or she is a bit of a dick.


If Nate Silver is right about this, then I want people to check and see that he doesn't have a nuclear-powered DeLorean in his garage.

Projection: Franken to Win Recount by 27 Votes

The Return of Clinton-era Reporting (did it ever really leave?)

At left, McCain and Jonathan Martin (center, in the role of Lindsey Graham) grillin'

Now that his BBQ-Buddy has gone down to defeat, Jonathan Martin is free to cover Barack Obama the way the GOP (and Mark Halperin) want:
President-elect Barack Obama has yet to attend church services since winning the White House earlier this month, a departure from the example of his two immediate predecessors.

OMG, OMG, OMG -- it must be because he and Michelle are too busy making "Whitey" tapes or something!

Although, apparently Martin does have the keen eye of a stalker:
On the three Sundays since his election, Obama has instead used his free time to get in workouts at a Chicago gym.

Somebody call the Pulitzer Prize Board!

(pic from McCain press BBQ in March via the McCain bloggette)

[Cross-Posted at Firedoglake]

Bill Kristol wants you to remember

His hands remain completely clean over the events of the last 8 years. That is all you need to know.

Indeed, one hopes they’re (the Obama Administration) not too invested in the findings of the economics profession of which they’re such distinguished products — because one suspects many of the conventional answers of that profession aren’t much applicable to the current situation. After all, wasn’t it excessive confidence in complex economic models and sophisticated financial instruments on the part of people well educated in modern economics that helped get us into the current mess?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

I can live with this

I strongly encourage the Lieberman-part coming true.

I never document

The atrocities --

But get a load of the line up on Meet the Press today:

NBC's "Meet the Press" — Former Secretary of State James Baker; former Commerce Secretary William Daley; Sen. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn.

Is this just a repeat of when Brokaw guest hosted for Russert in 1999 or something?

So painful it's funny

I don't know about where you live but here in Des Moines, we have a car dealer on TV using, as an enticement, that when someone purchases a new car they will get 50 shares of GM stock. A stock that is currently worth $3 (used to be worth a hell of a lot more, of course).


Does George Bush spend more time watching internet porn or ESPN?

Saturday, November 22, 2008


Republicans initiate first strike against the world's Universal Health Care Systems!

God forbid Government do things the People like

Hilzoy at Political Animal finds this conservative Cato Institute analysis on the impact of Obama and the Democrats passing national health care. It sums up the difference between the two parties succinctly:

Passing Obamacare would be like performing exactly the opposite function of turning people into investors. Whereas the Investor Class is more conservative than the rest of America, creating the Obamacare Class would pull America to the left. Michael Cannon of the Cato Institute, who first found that wonderful Markowitz quote, puts it succinctly in a recent blog post: "Blocking Obama's health plan is key to the GOP's survival."

In other words, a comprehensive health care plan would prove incredibly popular with the public and they'd credit the Democrats. Good policy makes good politics.

And the GOP can't have that. It's bad policy all the time apparently. "Oh My God, it might work, we best kill it!"

Truly, the bottom line per this analysis is that the Republican version of the purpose of government is to hurt the people it governs.

Might be nice if we could actually have a proper public debate on these two theries and see which one people want.

The Government that makes your life better, or the one that makes you miserable.

It's quite a policy slogan.

One area Obama might have some clout

Is with the ever more intractable problem of Zimbabwe and how South Africa's government seems to look the other way on Mugabe (ironically much like White South Africa & White Rhodesia used to do the same).

Oh, and Jimmy Carter, that old guy has stones. Can you see George W. Bush doing much in his retirement years other than give $50,000 a pop speeches to the ever shrinking legions of conservative groups?


After 7 years and 9 months of bad decisions, George W. Bush has decided to cap off his last three months in office by doing absolutely nothing while the American economy goes down the shitter.

Now that's what you call building upon your legacy.

Even Herbert Hoover's last five months in office after the 1932 election (President's used to be inaugurated on March 4, thank goodness that changed in the 20th Amendment), were a beehive of activity with efforts to stave off total collapse. Indeed, one of the great relatively unreported stories of the transition between Hoover and Roosevelt were the former's constant efforts to enlist FRD in the decisions he made and FDR's reluctance to have his imprint on any of it. In the last few days of Hoover's Administration the outgoing and incoming Treasury officer's finally worked out some major details of the banking crisis.

But Bush is doing literally nothing. After the passage of the bailout money, he's literally disappeared. No one cares what he thinks, and no one thinks he cares. The only thing that he seems to be doing is burrowing his assholes into civil service, writing wankerrific Presidential Orders that will be overturned by the new Administration, and figuring out which donor or operative to pardon.

Heckuva job Bushie.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Why must we wait two more months for the grown-ups?

I'm ready for serious governance already. Geez.

Oyf dah!

The battle over which Jewish guy will get to represent millions of German Lutherans (per Minnesota Tradition, unbroken since 1978 [seriously]) is coming down to the wire and ever closer.

World's worst kept secret

MSNBC's Morning Joe & his insane clown posse reporting that Obama will nominate Hillary Clinton as his Secretary of State.

Can there be an anti-climatic anti-climax?

"As Todd is my witness, I thought turkeys wouldn't die"

If you're like me, and I know I am, you are more than happy to see Sarah Palin disappear into the ever-thawing tundra.

Except for when she lapses into hilarious self-parody...

So I guess we'll be seeing her a lot.

Just a few weeks, before the Palin/Joe the Plumber "Left Behind Tour" begins anew in Iowa for 2012.

But in the mean time, please enjoy and be completely and utterly horrified at this video which shows just how violent irony can be (seriously). Clearly this moment is inspired by the video above.

Stay tuned for when Palin recreates the Odessa Steps scene from the Battleship Potemkin, which she'll tell you her great grandmother virtually saw from Juneau -- after you tell her where Odessa is.*

[Cross-posted at Firedoglake]

(*yes, modern day literalists, I know)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Lug Boat

Sadly, No reveals that "love, exciting and ewwwwww" is afloat as the S.S. Wanktanic explores the various STDs one can get from Caribbean Seamen.

Love, exciting and ewww
Come aboard, they're flinging poo
Lugs, oh so sweaty on board
Buffet food, will come back up on you

The Love Boat soon will be making another run
The Love Boat promises to be speaking in tongues
Set a course for adventure
Your mind on a new bro-mance

And Derb won't bad touch anymore

Just an open lap on a creepy bore
It's love
Welcome aboard
It's love!

Formal Stalking Day


Casual Stalking Day

Seriously that guy looks like a bizarre combination of Phil Mickelson and Artie Lange. When do you think they gave Ramesh Ponnurrururururururururu (top picture right) a small lantern to hold and a jockey cap?

Ah, yes, the brandy & cigar -- a smooth move while you are on a cruise -- to be followed up with a beg for sucker's cash from your readers.

By the way, those pics make it look like Jonah stripped down to his thong and got himself a nice white-guy sunburn. All that baked dough probably smells of warm cookies, no doubt too terribly enticing for his sidekick to ignore.

Snortin' Cokie

Via Digby, oh Lord:

Roberts, herself the daughter of two successful Democratic politicians, suggested, in fact, that the 44-year-old mother of five and unsuccessful Republican vice presidential candidate could be "the white Oprah" in the near future.

God forbid we go through our lives without a "White Oprah". What the fuck does that mean?

Digby, brilliantly (and from my standpoint enviously) coined the best phrase on this "The Great White (H)oprah".

As any NPR listener, or ABC News viewer knows there is no limit to Cokie's determination to poo-poo all this nonsense about Democrats winning elections and some conservatives being just too fucknuts to be responsible for their own errors...that trend is not being ended:

"The camera loves her," added Roberts. "She is very determined to get back to where she was."

A best-selling author, Emmy Award-winning journalist and regular commentator on ABC's "This Week," Roberts said Palin feels "she was vastly disserved by the McCain campaign and I agree with her."

Why thank you self-described oracle of Mt. Cokie. She wasn't disserved by her own ignorance or shop-a-holic tendencies, no it was all the fault of others. Just like the bank failures are not the fault of the bankers but of those greedy home buyers and the fault of the auto company's isn't the managers, but those greedy union workers.

God forbid those populous, ever suffering, ever at fault riff-raff ever get a chance to exercise political power over someone so born to the nobility of the establishment at Cokie Roberts.

Spurned again!

Once again, anonymous middle-aged doughy guys are ignored from a list of sexy men.

What these blogs need is someone with a "healthy" hat and foot fetish.

I mean look at the size of that tassle!

Loved all over the world


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Cat's Cats make ideal Supervisors

(Note: I apologize to the grammar police)

America's Slump Buster

For the especially depraved sexual pervert with cash to burn, the National Review offers it's wares:

This year, we’ve added a few new levels of sponsorship support (and additional tokens of thanks) for those who invest $100 or more in the present and future of NRO. Donations of $1,000 or more include new opportunities for access to our editors and writers.

$5,000 will get Derb to let you sit your young daughter upon his lap.

$10,000 will let you slap him when he crosses the line.

al-Zawahiri the Ditto-Head

Apparently Al Qaeda's No. 2 listens to Limbaugh, calls Obama a "house negro".

Well, that's it, Zawahiri isn't just a deluded fuck, a terrorist, and an anti-semite, he's also a racist!

That's the tipping point for me.

Harry Reid's secret plan for handling Joe Lieberman

The Senate will only meet on Saturday.


HE'S A PROPHET, as always!!!*
Shorter Broder:

After the last 8 years in which George W. Bush cleaned up their mess, the Clinton's will return to TRASH the place -- and it's not their place -- it's my place.

*Note, Broder was undoubtedly paid in cold-hard cash to give the conservative and libertarian aliged-Hoover Institute (my God, look at their "media fellows") what they wanted to hear.

58 and counting...

Hulk SMASHED barely edged.

The fact that a convicted felon barely lost reelection (on his 85th birthday no less), while a likely yet-to-be indicted one like Don Young gets rather easily reelected tells you all you need to know about Alaska politics. Of course, electing the criminally stupid as your Governor doesn't reflect well either -- but then many states have done that.

Meanwhile the recount in Minnesota officially begins today, with Al Franken the odds-on favorite to get six-tenths of an Al Franken Decade over the man he's currently behind, the fraudulent legal process abusing Norm Coleman.

Dick Cheney's non de plume

Nate Silver found out what Cheney's up to (read to the end).

I believe the look on Cheney's face was "disdain".

"You don't have the Prestige!"

Oh, Bill Kristol, he's ever so busy, almost as much as his New York Times fact-checker. His contract is nearly up with the Times, will he stay?

"I'm ambivalent. It's been fun. It's a lot of work. I have a lot of things going on. But I haven't really focused on it."

If it did not include the word "ambivalent", I'd swear this was a George Bush quote.

In other news, Rod Marinelli, coach of the equally successful Detroit Lions had the same response as to whether he'll be back in 2009, even if his club has a record unblemished by success. Come to think of it, this quote might work for the entire Ford Family.

(Modern Zapruder pics from here)

[Cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


That's a LOT of good will:

District and federal officials are preparing for as many as 4 million people for the inauguration of President-elect Barack Obama, a crowd that would be three or four times larger than previous big events on the Mall.

Only a fraction of those people will be close enough to get a good look at the action. But officials are planning extra JumboTrons at the Mall and along the inaugural parade route so that spectators can feel a part of the historic day.

If there is a God ...

He and/or She has spoken and says "you suck":

Because of a weak economy and cash-strapped donors, Focus on the Family said it is eliminating 202 jobs, the deepest cuts in the 32-year history of the Colorado Springs-based Christian nonprofit. The ministry laid off 149 workers, and cut another 53 vacant positions.

So, right after saying they were putting out a "naughty" retailers list of those who are just not baby Jesus-blowin' enough for the Holidays, they fire 200 plus people - just before the Holidays.

But Dobson will still be able to afford that diamond-encrusted dachshund-beating-belt for the holidays.

[pic from here]


The triune-battle for the Republican brand begins: Short-Bus Socrates Newt Gingrich, professional cipher Mitt Romney, and preternatural grifter Sarah Palin. Palin's been the one in the news lately of course -- and she's determined to stay that way. But we all know Mitt will be sandblasted to a sheen and preening back here in Iowa before Obama places his hand on the Bible (or Quran if you read RedState). Which leaves Newt out there desperate to both keep his name in the news and for reasons to step out on wife number three.

Let's see the red meat:
I think there is a gay and secular fascism in this country that wants to impose its will on the rest of us, is prepared to use violence, to use harassment. I think it is prepared to use the government if it can get control of it. I think that it is a very dangerous threat to anybody who believes in traditional religion.
Still not as fascist as those traditional marriage vows though, eh Newt?

(pic from here)

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Monday, November 17, 2008

"And then she said, sorry but Todd has already marked his underwear"

(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)


George Will makes the mistake of discussing the usual revisionist right-wing economic history with a Nobel Prize winner in Economics sitting on his right. Somehow he thought all he'd ever have to deal with is Cokie.

And Baa Baa Louie too!

Didn't they favor Prop 8?

Once campaign rivals, President-elect Barack Obama and Sen. John McCain are ready to talk about how they can collaborate on issues facing the country...

The two will be joined by Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, a McCain confidant, and Rep. Rahm Emanuel, an Illinois Democrat Obama has chosen as his White House chief of staff.

Can't Graham and McCain start leading separate lives again?


And now to get to work on those pictures of Barry Manilow:

When NASA released this image from their Lunar Orbiter 1 back in 1966, the first photograph ever of the Earth rising above the Moon's surface, it was low resolution but they still amazed the world. This week, they have surprised every space aficionado re-releasing the same image in ultra-high definition. The cool part now is that NASA hasn't used any upscaling or magical infinite zoom-in filter from CSI. Instead, they have created a new technology that uses refurbished analog machines and a new digital process that fully extracts the information stored in the program's old magnetic tapes, something that was impossible to do in the 60s.

Full giant-ass picture in its detailed glory here.

Hey look, it's the Chairman of AIG

Goldman Sachs is doing it better.

"Good thing my hands are completely clean"

Bill Kristol has never been wrong, just ask Bill Kristol!

Republicans and conservatives today face a similar challenge to that of 1976. A hawkish foreign policy, social conservatism and middle-American populism aren’t the problems. Those elements, as embodied on the Republican ticket by John McCain and Sarah Palin, produced a respectable 46 percent of the national vote — in the midst of an economic meltdown, with the Bush administration flailing and House Republicans rebelling and the Republican ticket lacking any coherent economic message.

The "K" isn't for Kwaanza

Dear American Family Association, would it kill you to think things through just a little bit?

Let Your “Light” Shine For Christ This Christmas Season!

Looking for an effective way to express your Christian faith this Christmas season to honor our Lord Jesus? Now you can…. with the “Original Christmas Cross” yard decoration.

Yes, an image of a burning cross in the front yard -- A White Christmas indeed.

Via Balloon Juice

[Cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Good to see

Sullivan has a pretty good pictoral run down of all the anti-gay bigotry marches throughout the country yesterday. Behold the power of Facebook.

Here's the gathering outside Des Moines City Hall:


Why does Starbucks whole bean coffee taste so good when I grind it and brew it myself, but when I buy the same thing at an actual Starbucks the extra $3.50 I put into a cup just adds the taste of burning?

Forward by Joe the Plumber

Sounds like a job for Regnery:

She failed to save John McCain from presidential election doom, but Sarah Palin, the Republican senator’s controversial running mate, may yet emerge as the saviour of the American publishing industry. Literary agents are queueing up to sign her to a book deal that could earn her up to $7m.

Why she'll be able to afford to pay someone to carry Piper carrying Trig.

I'm sure it will be up there with The Scarlet Pimpernel.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Who will lead the GOP?

Who cares?

Tone deaf

At an international meeting on the global economic free fall, Bush goes for one last high society ride (I'm guessing he'll be drinking this too...what better time to cease pretending to be on the wagon?) leaders who are in town to discuss the economic crisis are set to dine in style Friday night while sipping wine listed at nearly $500 a bottle.

According to the White House, tonight's dinner to kick off the G-20 summit includes such dishes as "Fruitwood-smoked Quail," "Thyme-roasted Rack of Lamb," and "Tomato, Fennel and Eggplant Fondue Chanterelle Jus."

To wash it all down, world leaders will be served Shafer Cabernet “Hillside Select” 2003, a wine that sells at $499 on

The exceedingly pricey wine may seem a bit peculiar given leaders are in Washington to discuss a possible world financial meltdown

Gee, ya' think?


Scott Horton, who was on the Siegelmen case as a miscarriage from the beginning, sheds more detail from what was written about yesterday:

Grimes quoted the lead prosecutor describing direct interaction with a juror who was about to be questioned by the judge and who was “scared and afraid she is going to get into trouble.” This conduct violated rules guaranteeing the independence of jurors as well as an order issued by the judge in court against dealings between the jurors and the prosecution team.

Communications of this sort between litigants and a juror often lead to a mistrial and potential disciplinary action against lawyers involved. However, the Justice Department kept these jury interactions secret from the court and defense counsel in what may constitute a serious act of obstruction.

It is not that hard to describe, as an attorney, what kind of interaction you can have with a juror.


It is not a hard line to discern, you don't speak to jurors, you don't interact with them at all. Period.

If, by happenstance, you happen to run into a juror or accidentally speak to them, you immediately inform the court and opposing counsel.

If, particularly, in a criminal case a juror is contacting you or soliciting information, or sharing their concerns you (1) tell them to stop and (2) immediately inform the judge. The manner in which it was conducted in this case calls for criminal charges against the prosecutors, it's jury tampering and abuse of process pure and simple. But first they should have their licenses yanked.

The Judge in the Siegelman case was himself a real piece of work, but it tells you just how far the prosecution in this case was conducting itself as a rogue operation that they kept this to themselves.

This case isn't by any shot the greatest miscarriage of justice in American history, I'd bet there are a few hundred cases in Alabama along that top it (how many white murderers has an Alabama jury let go free when they lynched a black man? Hell, how many times were charges even brought -- or how many times has the lyncher been the police?)

Nevertheless, it is appalling how political and unjust this particular case is in the early 21st century -- and Rove's fingers are all over it.

"Go Away"

Friday, November 14, 2008


But I didn't like him any better when he was acting the classic Republican archetype -- the Sore Winner.

You're a genius, piggy. Enjoy your years in the wilderness.

Three words:

/falls off chair laughing

Kanga-rove Court

Behold the trial of Don Siegelman:

Grimes last year also gave DoJ additional e-mails detailing previously undisclosed contacts between prosecutors and members of the Siegelman jury....

The DoJ conducted its own inquiry into some of Grimes' claims, and wrote a report dismissing them as inconsequential. But the report shows that investigators did not question U.S. marshals or jurors who had allegedly been in touch with the prosecution.

A key prosecution e-mail describes how jurors repeatedly contacted the government's legal team during the trial to express, among other things, one juror's romantic interest in a member of the prosecution team. "The jurors kept sending out messages" via U.S. marshals, the e-mail says, identifying a particular juror as "very interested" in a person who had sat at the prosecution table in court. The same juror was later described reaching out to members of the prosecution team for personal advice about her career and educational plans. Conyers commented that the "risk of [jury] bias ... is obvious".

In my experience this kind of behavior in Federal Court would result in (1) An immediate mistrial and (2) Some serious sanctions on trial counsel -- like suspensions and disbarment. All the way up and down the Attorney General's office.

But that isn't the case in Bushworld.


We haven't seen a K-Lo post at Moron Junction for nearly 24 hours, I thought she was still on the SS Wanktanic? Cruising the Caribbean on the "Pappa Doc, Baby Doc & Batista" nostalgia tour.

I do hope she's safe, you'd think if nothing else, Greenpeace would be there to protect her, Bill Bennett and Newt Gingrich.

Nevertheless, I'm going to keep pouding my pud

Rich Lowry keeps seeing starbursts:

The split over Palin, of course, poisoned everything at the end. One of the dividing lines was between her communications team and the policy advisers. The communications team seemed to consider her a dolt, while the policy people—like Steve Biegun and Randy Scheunemann—were impressed with her and her potential. As one McCain aide told me, "It's the difference between considering her someone who lacks knowledge and someone who is incompetent, and they [the communications aides] treated her as the latter."

Oh, if only she had someone equally incompetent to run up against Rich Lowry?

Poor guy, neither Palin nor Petraeus even got down on their knees for li'l Richie. He really needs to move on to a new letter.

I'll sort of miss these...

But I'm sure I'll survive.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The President of the United States.

'Dignitude' to the end.

(AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

One reason our education system sucks

All the way through high school is that our nation's state and local school boards have, in the last three decades, been infiltrated by nutjobs like this in the always poorly attended school board elections.

State Board of Education member Cynthia Dunbar isn't backing down from her claim that Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama is plotting with terrorists to attack the U.S.

The Texas Freedom Network, a watchdog group that monitors the board, released a public statement on Monday asking Dunbar to retract the statement.

"I don't have anything in there that would be retractable," said Dunbar, R-Richmond. "Those are my personal opinions and I don't think the language is questionable."

I'm willing to bet Ms. Dunbar is a "young earth creationist" too.

Googlers go!

...oh never mind.

Dunbar was one of many Republican candidates to try to reobtain Tom Delay's old district in suburban Houston. Though this eventually happened, it wasn't Ms. Dunbar.

Here's her campaign website, she's a piece o' work.

Ah yes, Regent University, the lowest rated law school in the nation.

Yet the mighty recruiting station of so many infamous members of the Bush Administration including the "fabulous" Monica Goodling.


Nice community...can we give it to Canada?

Madison County, Idaho was once dubbed "the reddest place in America" by Salon, but that didn't make it any less shocking when elementary school children allegedly started chanting "assassinate Obama" on the school bus.

Yeah, it's an awesome place.

With a strongly conservative and Mormon population, Madison County is one of the most staunchly Republican counties in the United States. Since 1980 no Republican presidential candidate has failed to carry the county with less than 59 percent of the vote. In that same period Republican presidential candidates polled more than 90 percent of the county's vote on two occasions, Ronald Reagan in 1984 and George W. Bush in 2004. John McCain came close to this level in 2008, drawing 85 percent of the vote.

Goin' down the tubes

Ted Stevens now being routed in recount by a massive 800 plus votes!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Alaska, it's becoming a landslide!


Begich, Mark DEM 125019
Stevens, Ted REP 125016

3 frickin' votes.

Still several thousand ballots to go.

Begich pulls this out and we are up to 58 in the Democratic Caucus (including Lieberman).

With Franken having a real shot at winning the recount in Minnesota.

And Georgia still on deck.

Democrats Need to Reach Out to Religious Values Voters

This makes me laugh:

The other [Republican] camp, the Reformers, argue that the old G.O.P. priorities were fine for the 1970s but need to be modernized for new conditions. The reformers tend to believe that American voters will not support a party whose main idea is slashing government. The Reformers propose new policies to address
inequality and middle-class economic anxiety. They tend to take global warming seriously. They tend to be intrigued by the way David Cameron has modernized the British Conservative Party.

Moreover, the Reformers say, conservatives need to pay attention to the way the country has changed. Conservatives have to appeal more to Hispanics, independents and younger voters. They cannot continue to insult the sensibilities of the educated class and the entire East and West Coasts.

The Reformist view is articulated most fully by books, such as “Comeback” by David Frum and “Grand New Party” by Ross Douthat and Reihan Salam, as well as the various writings of people like Ramesh Ponnuru, Yuval Levin, Jim Manzi, Rod Dreher, Peggy Noonan and, at the moderate edge, me.

I look forward to my decadent over-educated lefty ass (comfortably ensconced in its coastal enclave) being kissed by the likes of David Brooks and Andrew Sullivan.


Oh, I do hope there is consideration of having Bush or Cheney body surf through the crowd...

As many as 1.5 million people may come for Obama inaugural festivities, according to officials at Destination DC, the District of Columbia's official convention and tourism corporation. By comparison, President Bush's inaugurations each drew about 300,000 people, according to Rebecca Pawlowski, a Destination DC spokeswoman.

The Secret Service, which is in charge of inauguration security, declined to say what it's anticipating in terms of crowds or how it intends to deal with it.

"We understand the historical nature of the event and we're responding accordingly," said Malcolm Wiley, a Secret Service spokesman.

Waiting for some right-wing blogger to be offended in 3...2...1...

Hey, I wonder what Joe Biden's up to?

Y'know the actual VP-elect?

Atlanta-based CNN just sent out a notice that Wolf Blitzer had snared an interview on Wednesday with Sarah Palin, who has resumed her duties as governor of Alaska.

That’s not news in and of itself, except for the locale — Miami, site of the Republican Governors Association.

In other words, on her first East Coast trip as a prospective 2012 presidential candidate, Palin won’t be stopping in Georgia to campaign for Republican incumbent Saxby Chambliss in the U.S. Senate runoff.

That's too bad, because she's going to miss that awesome fiddle-off between Johnny and the Devil.

*Rim Shot*

I have always thought of Michael Barone as the Gallagher of punditry -- should something happen to Fred Barnes or Chuckles Krauthammer. But now we find out he is the Michael Barone of stand up comedy, please bring your own plastic sheet and sledgehammer.

“The liberal media attacked Sarah Palin because she did not abort her Down syndrome baby," Barone said, according to accounts by attendees. "They wanted her to kill that child. ... I'm talking about my media colleagues with whom I've worked for 35 years.”...

Barone was speaking at the Palmer House Hilton in Chicago, to the 121st annual meeting of the National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges...About 500 people were in the room, and some walked out.

Barone did not dispute the accounts of his remarks. Asked about the comments, Barone said in an e-mail that he "was attempting to be humorous and, as many in public do, went over the line."

So really, the fault rests with society, not Michael Barone - "Damn you Toastmasters!". Self-proclaimed comedy expert Richard Cohen would surely agree.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

"Outbreaks from the Blacks"

As far as we come is as far as we have to go ...

Irony: the only swath of counties that voted more Republican in 2008 forms a red crescent.

Every Picture Tells a Story

Ain't it the truth.


Moron or Stalker?

July 2005:

It must be very strange to be President Bush. A man of extraordinary vision and brilliance approaching to genius, he can’t get anyone to notice. He is like a great painter or musician who is ahead of his time, and who unveils one masterpiece after another to a reception that, when not bored, is hostile.

November 2008:

Obama thinks he is a good talker, but he is often undisciplined when he speaks. He needs to understand that as President, his words will be scrutinized and will have impact whether he intends it or not. In this regard, President Bush is an excellent model; Obama should take a lesson from his example. Bush never gets sloppy when he is speaking publicly. He chooses his words with care and precision, which is why his style sometimes seems halting. In the eight years he has been President, it is remarkable how few gaffes or verbal blunders he has committed. If Obama doesn't raise his standards, he will exceed Bush's total before he is inaugurated.

It's starting to creepily be a little like this:

Mr. Chairman: Oh, alright. Well, take a seat, make yourself comfortable, sit anywhere. We're just getting ready to move on to our next ordr of business, but anything else?

Doug: Yeah, I'd like to say, partly to talk about it, and partly to let the new guy in on the mood here a little bit. Uh.. Mr. Belvedere is.. the light of my life. Um.. I know I speak for the others.. uh, when I say he is.. so amazing.. you know? And, uh.. he's just.. I wish.. you know.. I wish I could know him more, you know? Because.. he.. he is one of a kind, you know? He's.. I think about him all the time, and.. well, I'm wondering - should we kill him?

Mr. Chairman: [ stunned ] For God's sake, no!

Kevin: Uh.. we usually vote, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. Chairman: Well, okay, but before we vote, I'd like Doug to explain why he wants to kill Brocktoon!

Doug: Uh.. I want to meet this girl, and, uh.. I know that she'd be, you know, pretty impressed if she knew I hung out with Mr. Belvedere.

Mr. Chairman: Well, why kill him, then?!

Doug: Um.. because.. so he wouldn't know how unworthy I am to hang out with him..?

Yes a man of "care and precision"

Go to Sadly, No for extra guffaws.

(pic from, of course, Sadly, No)

Veteran's Day

Here's an Executive Order to think about...

How about we show those who return to this country in flag-draped caskets to be honored for their service, instead of hidden away from view as if we are ashamed of it all -- so as to not affect the tender feelings of the President?