Saturday, October 31, 2009


In columns on back-to-back days Broder engages in a level of work so strenuous it almost equals my output between 3:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m. M-F -- but unlike me, Broder never gives you your money's worth (and I'm not bragging when you contemplate what you pay).

Shorter Broder:

This coming Tuesday will be a referendum on Obama. This coming Tuesday will not be a referendum on Obama.

So there.

Damn, so profound.

About 37 years since Apollo 17

Hard to believe you can be solidly middle-aged and not have any memory of a moon landing.

But for the doubters the new Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter is providing those pictures you always wanted and will now say are photoshopped:

But what greater evidence of mankind's presence than leaving our garbage there?

Mastery of Detail

If nothing else about ol' Dick Cheney was said to be true, that was.

Well, seems like Cheney's alleged instant and detailed recollection of events was on "vacation" for some reason when he was interviewed in regard to the Valerie Plame Case.

Marcy Wheeler has details and then some on her blog, but Mother Jones has 22 specific convenient brain farts listed for your perusal.

As a lifelong Viking fan

I think I can say with some confidence that this is not something Bud Grant would have done (although maybe he should have tried it before some Super Bowl).

Friday, October 30, 2009

Yeah, Rudy's Going to Be Governor

This man was nominated to be George W. Bush's U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security on Rudy Giuliani's recommendation.

(Rudy also appointed him commissioner of both the New York Police Department and the New York City Department of Corrections and named a jail after him in downtown Manhattan -- an "honor" of which he was ultimately stripped.)

Run, Rudy. RUN!


Jon Stewart sums up the alleged "newsy" part of FoxNews:

Once again, comedy show more fact-based than Jake Tapper & Howard Kurtz.

The Continuing Adventures of Korean Jesus

And who is in his fan club:

This month, the Reverend Sun Myung Moon went to Washington to introduce As a Peace-Loving Global Citizen, his autobiography that, according to the Moon-owned Washington Times, "recounts the joys and challenges, the teachable moments and the monumental experiences of his life - much of it spent as a spiritual leader".

The newspaper reported that Moon received "congratulatory greetings" from Senator Joe Lieberman, former secretary of state Alexander Haig and former president George H W Bush, "hand-delivered by his son Neil Bush".

How many questions has Obama had about Jeremiah Wright (let alone any black person with an opinion)?

Yet, nobody in the media ever asks someone like Joe Lieberman why he, as an orthodox Jew, kisses the ass of a man who says he's the new Jesus?

Shorter Krauthammer

Obama should stop criticizing and keep letting me be President.


I guess I can understand David Broder not being cognizant of using "the Google", though basic history awareness would be nice, but how about his editors engaging in some fact checking?

But then maybe ol' Davey, George Will and Krauthammer share the same editors? That's a lot of error for one person to catch.

Today "the Dean" says this:

Consider the precedent that would be set if a major piece of social legislation were to be passed with a states' rights provision. Imagine, for example, if Franklin Roosevelt had signed the first Social Security law with the proviso that any states with Republican governors and legislatures could exempt themselves from its coverage...

That issue was settled in the realm of economic policy during FDR's second term, after enough new Supreme Court justices were seated to uphold the New Deal measures an earlier conservative majority had struck down. In the area of civil rights, Lyndon Johnson and a Democratic Congress put an end to the doctrine of states' rights.

That must be why when Medicare/Medicaid was passed during LBJ's Administration it included an "Opt-Out" provision, because the issue was all "settled".

Forget whatever short-comings there are of an "opt-out" and the Senate's bill, and there are many, to boldly assert it is bad because it is uses an invalid, unworkable, untried, concept for health care policy is either the product of result-driven stupidity or a plain-old lie. Broder, you don't like Harry Reid, laughably for all the wrong reasons, it does not excuse sloppy falsehoods.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Yes, it's the most predictable thing in the world...

Tom Matzzie:

President Obama didn't have to go to Dover. George W. Bush never went we're told. Obama could've stayed back at the White House and kept some distance from the war--almost suggesting it is the responsibility of the former president. But instead he chose to put himself firmly in front as the Commander in Chief. He chose to create an image that will likely endure through his presidency and as part of his legacy. What a dramatic contrast to images from the last presidency of George W. Bush flying over Katrina or "Mission Accomplished" day.

Unfortunately, although it is only a few hours since the president returned from Dover, we should expect that the Rush Limbaughs and Glenn Becks of the world will start whining about the president's visit accusing him of exploiting the event. Their script is so predictable that I can write this just after 9 AM with confidence that they'll do it. But our president should always be reminding the American people of the sacrifice our troops make.

I guess it's all part of his "hating America" plan.

It's a lock, they'll say it was all a big photo op and he really hates the troops, some petty bitch about him saluting, it will all be the usual blah blah bullshit blah.

Things you do NOT want to know the backstory about...

The Grifter Files

Iowans, even the usually reliable and gullible right-wingers, are aghast that it would take a cool 100 grand to get Sarah Palin to deign us with her presence in Des Moines. Aspiring candidates come to Iowa to kiss our ass, not the other way around. Only we and New Hampshire get this privilege three years out of four.

In Palin's defense she'll be on her book tour and is quite busy. After all, she'll need to hire someone to read her book and tell her what she purportedly has written. And then there's the expense of the Stunt-baby and what Steadman is charging to hang out with Todd and be his beard while she's doing Oprah.

But the really imporant question NY Times is...

How does the fact the Obamas appear to have a really good and effective marriage, affect our nation's only less slightly fabulously wealthy in these times?

Rush Limbaugh, Epidemiologist

Oh, and no, he's no bigot:

I don't doubt that the number of H1N1 cases out there is being hyped. And for many of the same reasons that AIDS was—and still is—hyped in Africa. Everything in Africa's called AIDS. The reason is they get aid money for it. AIDS is the biggest pile of-the biggest pot they throw money into.

And just like that, the cross gets lit. There are about a billion things this pompous gas bag knows diddly about. One is epidemiology, another of many, is Africa.

Now, if there's a dissertation necessary on the quality of parking lot bags of Oxy, he's your man.


I have to admit, I'm rather ambivalent about the whole Chris Farley DirecTV ad being tasteless.

First, of all, Chris Farley was generally tasteless when he was alive. Second, of all, David Spade's desperate search for money has him in quality stuff as much as when he could get work. He makes Rob Schneider seem like Olivier. No change.

What I'm really waiting for is the DirecTV ad that features anything between Bob Crane and Freddy Prinze.


They're thinking like Republicans and Roger Ailes now (and always):

Maybe it was just lousy timing, but many customers of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina are ticked off at the mail they've received recently from the state's largest insurer.

First, they learned their rates will rise by an average of 11 percent next year.

Next, they opened a slick flier from the insurer urging them to send an enclosed pre-printed, postage-paid note to Sen. Kay Hagan denouncing what the company says is unfair competition that would be imposed by a government-backed insurance plan. The so-called public option is likely to be considered by Congress in the health-care overhaul debate.

"No matter what you call it, if the federal government intervenes in the private health insurance market, it's a slippery slope to a single-payer system," the BCBS flier read. "Who wants that?"

Plenty of people, it turns out.

Indignant Blue Cross customers have rebelled against the insurer's message, complaining that their premium dollars have funded such a campaign.

Stupid, arrogant, both?

This is quite touching

Now if we can only find a way to get the hell out.

AP Photo.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Attention Lisa Ann

That next "Who's Nailin' Palin'" script comes pre-written:

Sarah Palin is the owner of a small marketing business called "Pie Spy" that was founded during her last few months as Alaska governor, according to financial records released on Tuesday.

Benign Threats of the Modern Age

"I shall mock you before the 459 people following me on Twitter!"

A Helpful Suggestion

Hey, ding dong: go cuddle with this guy. Then Tweet about it. Now that would be entertaining.


Oh no, he's no racist:

...the controversial radio host slammed Obama as "this little boy, this little man-child president whose primary job, if you will, in life has been leisure. This guy is more practiced at leisure than anything else."

Well just skip the "projection" necessary for Rush Limbaugh to accuse anyone of too much leisure and get right to the issue of referring to a black man a "boy" and "lazy", yep, no code words here, just out and out stereotyping.

Photoshoppers ENGAGE!

It's like they are enabling the "random penis-cropping and pasting" industry. [ED: There's an industry?]

Or maybe just photoshop in one of these.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess "NO" from available evidence

In today's Moonie Washington Times, a man the Bush Administration paid a cool quarter-million bucks to (or his editor) answers his own question in the headline:

Well, that's completely unsurprising

Cue up those old rumors about the CIA planting drugs in America's slums:

Ahmed Wali Karzai, the brother of the Afghan president and a suspected player in the country’s booming illegal opium trade, gets regular payments from the Central Intelligence Agency, and has for much of the past eight years, according to current and former American officials.

Well, that hardly seems like something the CIA would do.

And what about that pipeline shit?

Meanwhile, in stuff that's completely legal and so above-board it NEVER gets mentioned by the Villagers:

Sen. Lieberman has long been known to cultivate the insurance and pharmaceutical industries, which provide jobs in his home state and contributions to his campaign fund. But he has literally been sleeping with one of their Washington representatives ever since his wife, Hadassah, joined Hill & Knowlton last year. The legendary lobbying and PR firm hired her as a “senior counselor” in its “health and pharmaceuticals practice.”

This news marked Hadassah Lieberman’s return to consulting after more than a decade of retirement. “I have had a life-long commitment to helping people gain better health care,” she said in the press release announcing her new job. “I am excited about the opportunity to work with the talented team at Hill & Knowlton to counsel a terrific stable of clients toward that same goal.”

It would be uplifting to imagine that Hill & Knowlton—after spending the past decade as a defendant in tobacco class-action lawsuits because of its role in propaganda disputing the deadly effects of smoking—is now devoted to improving everybody’s health. More likely, the firm remains devoted to improving the profits of its clientele, which has historically included Enron, the Bank of Credit and Commerce International, Saudis, Kuwaitis, American International Group and Boeing.

When a senator’s wife works for one of the capital’s largest lobby shops, appearances tend to matter. In this case, something happened immediately that didn’t look very good.

Wanting to attend the funeral with Nikita

Oh how times change, and s**t happens and suddenly dogs and cats are living together. Apparently it's 1956 all-over agains and right-wingers are getting nostalgic for the wit & wisdom of comrade Kruschev.

Beck: Did you ever read Pravda?

Laffer: I did read Pravda, as a matter of fact.

Beck: Did you read that? Where they're like, 'What is wrong with the Republicans?' We're watching what happened to Russia -- Pravda gives us more truth than the American press!

And you can tell this is even more thought out than the usual Beck craziness as the man is wearing his "Joe Scarborough Smarty Glasses". As David Niewert notes, Beck doesn't just rely on crazy-assed racists discredited pseudo-historians (hmmm, needs more adjectives) from America anymore, no he's buttressing his dementia case with a crazy Russian propagandist. When's he going to start hitting up the writings of Trofim Lysenko?

The next thing you know he'll completely get Thomas Paine's politics wrong.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Most Interesting Thing I Read Today (So Far) here.

/via Andrew Sullivan


So in this "motivation seminar" (which a friend of mine was hired to work on and has many stories of its incredible offensiveness behind the scenes) George Bush appeared to exercise one of his many many many strong points -- public speaking:

"I don't see how you can be president without relying on the Almighty," he said, referring perhaps to Dick Cheney. "I can tell you that one of the most amazing surprises of the presidency was the fact that people's prayers affected me. I can't prove it to you. But I can tell you some days were great, some days not so great. But every day was joyous."

What the fuck does that even mean?

Were you "joyful" on 9/11? (apparently, yes)
Were you "joyful" to start an unnecessary war? (of course)

And your child will respond, "Way to really try there, jackass please tell me there's an adoption somewhere between you and me"

From the Annals of Incomprehensible lameness, these are the folks that responded to 9/11 by "shopping" and bombing a non-involved nation:

Fred Thompson does a TV Ad for the non-GOP right-winger in NY' 23rd:

"America is in trouble. When your grandchildren ask you why you didn't do something [to save America], be able to tell them you voted for Doug Hoffman."

Bill Kristol, like Dick Morris

Except he replaces "toe-sucking" with "thumb-sucking". But no matter how you "vice-it" it all comes down to sucking:

Even if Republicans pick up the House in 2010, the party’s big ideas and themes for the 2012 presidential race will probably not emanate from Capitol Hill.

The center of gravity, I suspect, will instead lie with individuals such as Palin and Huckabee and Gingrich, media personalities like Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh, and activists at town halls and tea parties.

Yeah, a real recipe for success as the GOP has managed to become even more unpopular. Good plan as always there Billy-boy.

And Tobias Funke as "Mrs. Featherbottom"

There are some football motivational efforts I do not need to know about. Mike Singletary dropping his pants, and this...

So coach Brad Childress dressed up like a female flight attendant, high heels, wig, blue hose, wig...and still a beard on the flight.

I'm told Childress had given a little lecture earlier to the team, reminding them to show the utmost respect to all flight attendants.

If you've seen a picture of Brad Childress you will know that his picture looks like the "America's Most Wanted" digitally recreated picture of some family destroying husband who has been a fugitive for 20 years.

America's Concern Troll

Someone has gone on a new medication regimen...

Those whose battle cry is "Give the generals what they need" are actually saying "Give the generals what they want" -- which is not responsible policymaking. President Obama's protracted review of all the options is precisely the right approach. We have gone to war in a hurry once too often of late.

That's funny, I could have sworn some identically named, equally shitty writer, said this just a few weeks ago:

The war in Afghanistan is eminently more winnable than was Vietnam. The Taliban is far from universally liked or admired. Still, the war will require more than a significant commitment of troops and, of course, money...But the ultimate in realism is for the president to gauge himself and who he is: Does he have the stomach and commitment for what is likely to continue to be an unpopular war? Will he send additional troops, but hedge by not sending enough -- so that the dying will be in vain?

I'm with you Hodgman!

Well, over the weekend my stubborn adherence to PCs resulted in a visit to Costco for free samples as it was Ghirardelli Brownie day and picking up the 3-title version of Windows 7.

And, unlike the past, it actually worked. It didn't go all that fast, so it was like the past new versions, but I'm happy to report it worked and it does seem to be a LOT better than Vista (not hard) or XP (harder).

Microsoft might not have completely fucked up.

Now, there's a slogan.

The Most Boring Name in News

America has spoken and it has decided that the charisma of Wolf Blitzer, Lou Dobbs and Larry King is just not charisma enough.

CNN, which invented the cable news network more than two decades ago, will hit a new competitive low with its prime-time programs in October, finishing fourth – and last – among the cable news networks...

...CNN’s programs were behind not only Fox News and MSNBC, but even its own sister network HLN

It's as if CNN hired a cast of Jay Lenos.

Wolf Blitzer has two traits, incredible blandness and mixed with stupidity; Larry King is a horrid mix of Charlie Rose and Methuselah. CNN tries to play off the notion it doesn't "spin" news, but what the heck is Lou Dobbs? Dobbs ratings are terrible, so bad that when his contract is up he won't even be able to do the "Tucker Carlson Failure Tour" and hit each and every cable news network while circling the drain. MSNBC doesn't want him, even FoxNews doesn't want him.

If Lou wants to work in TV, it looks like he'll have to do news on Telemundo.

Makes you wonder if they had decided to be a news network and actually present more substantive and well-reported news stories rather than the path of concern-trolling how they would be doing? Maybe they should change things?


(pic from here)

[Cross-Posted at Firedoglake]

Monday, October 26, 2009

Open Enrollment

I got my packet today. My share of my health insurance premium is rising 30%. My deductible is up $100/year and my co-pays will increase in 2010, too. (May I just add that my borg is into Year Two of a salary freeze?)

This on a day when I jumped through hoops in an effort to get a (non-H1N1) flu shot. I managed to get the shot, but I paid more than three times as much for it as I had to. Now I've got to file an insurance claim. Let's see what they reimburse me.

By the way: I consider myself one of the lucky ones.

What are your experiences?

Note To Self

Never ever underestimate the left's ability to devour itself, even after an enormous stride forward.


Unfucking believable.

The land of awesome II

Another terrible day:

Separate helicopter crashes killed 14 Americans in insurgent-wracked Afghanistan on Monday, the U.S. military said. It was one of the deadliest days of the war for U.S. troops.

Cheney's brand of dithering

Is apparently anything that is not a rubber-stamp:

I have it from reliable sources that the principals in the Bush administration spent one hour on that [Afghanistan] report before they handed it off to Obama.

Explains -- but does not at all surprise -- the clusterfuckery doesn't it?

That guy's pretty good

Well, that was a pretty good game between really good teams that ended incredibly frustratingly for this Viking fan (still two great defensive plays for the Steelers).

But this post is about Adrian Peterson JUST before the final disastrous interception that resulted from Chester Taylor having a ball go through his hands.

You think Peterson isn't a competitor that didn't want this game. Forget the awesome hit, listen to him on the sideline. That guy is frickin' awesome. Maybe, just maybe they should give the ball to him more in the final drive (51 passes WTF?)

Mister, we could use somebody (somewhat) like Andrew Jackson again

One of the best reads of my college years was Robert Remini's three-part biography of Andrew Jackson. There was a time that Andrew Jackson dominated American politics like no other. Until FDR he was the icon of the Democratic Party -- the reason there are all those "Jefferson-Jackson Dinners".

Of course, Jackson had gigantic faults. A slave-owner, a first-class racist (if there were more Asian-Americans then, he'd have had the racist trifecta), a gigantic hot-head, a scofflaw, and the first real "hater" we had in the White House -- he makes Nixon seem magnanimous.

But there was one thing that used to be considered a detriment that maybe, just maybe, he was ahead of the curve on. He hated big banks, and unlike modern Democrats he was damn willing to do something about it.

Maybe we should have a bit of Andy Jackson in our modern politicians rather than his ironic placement on a $20 bill.

In the United States, three banks hold almost 34% of the nation's deposits, four banks issue 50% of the country's mortgages, and the five largest credit card lenders control 74% of the market. These companies have a stranglehold on our wallets. And as we've seen, when they make bad decisions, they can take the whole economy down with them.

Rather than give the banking industry trillions without real consequences, Jackson at least would have threatened the leaders of Goldman sacks to a duel -- and he'd mean it.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Decision 2012

Mike Allen's positive that this will be a tough one!

Photo of Obama family: Annie Liebovitz

First Prize for Stupid

Updated Below (Ooo! I feel so Greenwald-esque!)

This is the stupidest thing I have read in I don't know how long.

Who are the "women's advocates" and liberal bloggers cited in the article? Maybe they're both Dee Dee Myers? Mika Brzezinski? Pat Peale?

Christ, it's going to be a long eight years.

P.S. People, when the New York Times capitulates completely to its overlord, Rupert Murdoch, and goes behind a paywall, please don't pay for it. Not one dime. They don't deserve a single cent of your hard-earned cash. I know. I know. You want to read Krugman. But you know you'll be able to read Krugman. Because you know some kind soul out there on the internets will post his columns online, just like they did during the Times' failed "Select" experiment. Maybe you'll protest, "But if the Times fails, then Murdoch will buy it and what will 'we' have?" To which I say, "Baby, Murdoch's already bought the Times." What more evidence do you need?

Update: Ah, I see who all those "women's Advocates" are. Go Google "Amy Siskind", folks.


In today's episode David Broder gives the same advice on health care reform he gave to to FDR during the depression.

I'm not kidding.

Sucked then, sucks now.

Mission still Accomplished

Someday we may actually be getting the hell out of Iraq (so we can get more people into the amusement park that is Afghanistan, this is the part where you're supposed to shout "USA!"). In the meantime, the legacy of the worst strategic decision since Vietnam continues:

Iraqi hospital officials say at least 91 people have been killed and 250 wounded in twin car bombings that appeared to target government buildings in downtown Baghdad.

The powerful blasts went off less than a minute apart Sunday in parking lots near the headquarters of the Baghdad provincial administration and the Ministry of Justice building.

There were so many wounded that even civilian cars were pressed into service to bring the casualties to area hospitals.

Atta J. Turk's (slightly more) Trusty NFL Picks

Well, another 4 and 2 week makes me 20 and 16 for the year. Not awful but hardly awesome. Happily for viewers, but less happily for me in prognosticating, this week features several competitive games between good teams.

Vikings at Steelers:
Unlike the last few weeks when I start with an easy game to pick, I'll start with what is considered the game of the week. It's a match up between the reigning Super Bowl Champion and the perennial chokers -- my team -- the Minnesota Vikings. But that's all the whining I can be allowed to get away with because the Vikes are undefeated and have more than their share of breaks in getting there. One reason I was especially delighted that the Vikes managed to eek out a win against the Ravens last week (thanks for missing that field goal Ravens' kicker) was I figured this game as a loss all year. Still do. Though the Steelers are about as banged up as the Vikings. But the Vikings are missing Antoine Winfeild, say hello to your 350 yards passing Mr. Rothles...oh fuck it...Big Ben. Should be a good game, but the Steelers pull it out.

Buffalo at Carolina: This is one of those games that only the fans in those areas give a shit about -- and frankly given their respective records I have a feeling they don't give much of a shit either. The Bills beat a good team last week, they intercepted Mark Sanchez 5 times and grabbed another during a field goal fake (or busted play I can't remember). Now they come up against Jake "the Interception Machine" Delhomme. This cannot end well, right? Well, that's where my counter-intuition comes in. In a game that will be remembered all of, well, not at all, the Panthers win though nobody will remember the score, they just will.

Patriots vs. Buccaneers (in London): If we want to build up the NFL brand in England (and why exactly is the question) shouldn't we give them a quality game? This is like having Manchester United play a match at say Yankee Stadium against the Hartlepool Monkey Hangers. Sure Tom Brady is quite a bit more handsome than Wayne Rooney but that's not really the point is it? The Patriots just got done throttling the Titans (dressed as Oilers) 59 to Zip. This will be a rout for the Patriots.

Packers at Browns:
The Packers play the Vikings next week, I suppose if they were playing a good team but not a real power (like the Vikings) this might be a trap-game. But this is the Browns. The biggest danger they'll face in this one is that some of the Browns still have the flu and are contagious. Now that the Raiders managed to win again (and thanks so much Eagles, more on that later) the Browns, Redskins, and the winless lot of Rams, Titans, and Buccaneers are the jokes of the league. The Packers should win easily -- even though Aaron Rogers gets sacked another five or six times.

Bears at Bengals: You know the rules, well maybe you don't, but here they are. It isn't rational, it's stupid, etc. But in any competitive game I will pick against the Bears for no other reason than Jay Cutler looks just like the 3/4ths of a man-child in Two and a Half Men. On the basis of talent they should probably beat the Bengals though they are hardly a bad team. But Jay Cutler should be hanging out and whining with Charlie Sheen over who picks up the hooker this time. So I'm picking the Bengals.

If this bothers you, dammit people, this is SCIENCE!

Eagles at Redskins:
There is no more talented team that emits an annual complete clusterfuck of a brainfart than the Eagles. Every year they hit a stretch when Andy Reid completely fucks up a game or two. It's just fucking weird. Last week against national joke Oakland, one of the worst rushing defenses in the league Reid decides (oh they'll never expect us to pass) and hardly runs the whole game. Well, end of the day comes and they lost 13 to 9 to the fucking Raiders. What the hell?

Now the Eagles come against the leagues new champions in organizational dysfunction. Andy Reid calling plays versus a man for the last five years worked in a bingo hall calling plays. Hmmmm, slight edge, but only slight, to Andy Reid. Somehow the Eagles don't fuck it up and they win.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Real Patriotic

Corporation says USA? Fuck you:

Appliance maker Electrolux announced Friday that it would close two Iowa plants by spring 2011, putting 850 people out of work as operations are moved to Mexico.

Electrolux Major Appliances North America [ed. Swedish company, but North American Division apparently made the call] said it would close the Webster City plant by early 2011 and a smaller facility in Jefferson by late 2010.

These are two small towns (Webster City 8,800; Jefferson 4,600), the effect of these closings is devastating, a near death sentence.

Yet the patriotism of the corporate honchos is NEVER questioned, after all they'll make even more money and that's the truly important thing, actual people? Well, fuck 'em.

Conservatives always scream "CLASS WARFARE" whenever a rich person might have their tax rates slightly higher.

Well, what the fuck is this? And who the hell is more hurt, a billionaire paying 37% instead of 33% or some family losing their entire source of income?

Clarence says something somewhat true

Stop the presses:

"So why do you beat up on people if you already know? I don't know, because I don't beat up on 'em. I refuse to participate. I don't like it, so I don't do it," Thomas said during an appearance before law students at the University of Alabama.

Not to reveal too much of my real life, but there is a tendency to pick on attorneys on occasion or for appellate judges to ask questions not about the case, but about the most nit-picky stuff to make themselves look smart or a lawyer ill-prepared. I've been lucky enough to avoid this situation for the most part, but I've seen it done to too many lawyers when I've attended arguments.

It's not that it is also false that some lawyers make bad appeals, write shitty briefs, and occasionally are poorly prepared and that shouldn't happen either. But sometimes the judge to the lawyer quotient is a little like picking the wings off flies.

On the other hand, Clarence Thomas hasn't asked a question on the bench in FOUR YEARS and essentially admits his mind is made up by the time oral argument occurs. That's NOT something to brag about.

Not necessarily what Digby said...but what was said on Digby


"The results suggest that searching online may be a simple form of brain exercise that might be employed to enhance cognition in older adults," Teena D. Moody, the study's first author and UCLA researcher, said in a statement.

Good, I'll be a tough and successful Trivial Pursuit contestant until the day I die. If only someone will play Trivial Pursuit with me.

Via Digby, of course.

Yeah, what a dictator...

Considering nobody really has any idea what Obama "really" wants in regard to the public option I think it's fair to say he's not quite the all-powerful dictator FoxNews wants me to believe.

Friday, October 23, 2009


Mike Allen gives the reach-arounds -- while wondering why on earth anyone would suspect FoxNews of right-wing bias.

Why oh why indeed? Lifted utterly and completely from here.

Roger Ailes for president in 2012?

Roger Ailes In Playbook today, Mike Allen reports that “friends and associates” are encouraging Fox News CEO Roger Ailes to run for president in 2012:

“Ailes knows how to frame an issue better anybody and that’s what we need now,” says one Ailes friend who is encouraging him to run. Frank Luntz, for one, tells Playbook that Ailes could be a force if does it. “I have known Roger Ailes for 29 years,” says Luntz. “No one knows how to win better than Roger.”

No reason to suspect media bias at all. Not. one. reason.

Alex Cook at Gawker reaches Pareene level accuracy with this pithy summary of what this laughable prospect is really all about and how only a complete tool like Mike Allen could fall for it and push the notion:

But here's the joke: The White House's decision to delegitimize Fox News isn't intended to delegitimize Fox News. It is intended to elevate them into a political force, to fill the vacuum in the GOP leadership. By spinning a "White House v. Fox News" narrative, they've managed to temporarily supersede the "White House v. GOP" narrative, thereby making Fox News the de facto political opposition. Which is what both sides want: Fox News for money and viewers, and the White House because they like the idea of having an opposition that is noxious, untruthful, combative, angry, emotionally unstable, and subject to an unyielding financial incentive to be ever moreso. In that meta-world of jujitsu message wars—if you were trapped, Tron-like, inside Allen's foul mind—an Ailes candidacy makes perfect sense.

Hey look, it's President McCain

Jeebus, are there truly no other politicians in America available on Sunday besides this guy, Lindsey Graham, and Joe Lieberman?

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) has been booked for yet another Sunday talk show appearance this weekend — this time on CBS’ Face The Nation. Despite a “wildly unsuccessful presidential campaign” last year and his comparative irrelevancy in the U.S. Senate, this will mark the 15th time McCain has appeared on a Sunday talk show since January.

I didn't know some barbecue could merit so many reach-arounds.

It's possible I suppose that some of these appearance were double-dips (especially if he and Lieberman were on at the same time...hiyoooo!) but if not, in the roughly 38 or 39 weekends since Obama became the actual President, McCain has been on the boob tube (as Meghan McCain calls it) almost half the time pretending to be one.

Vain much?

Shorter Krauthammer: The "news" organization that employs me and pays me a shitload of money is AWESOME and FAIR and BALANCED and I have no obvious bias for saying so whatsoever -- and in the meantime, look at all the conflict of interest bullshit I can get away with at this rag?

Defend Fox from whom? Fox's flagship 6 o'clock evening news out of Washington (hosted by Bret Baier, formerly by Brit Hume) is, to my mind, the best hour of news on television. (Definitive evidence: My mother watches it even on the odd night when I'm not on.)
Well, it must be empirically true then.

What a jackass.

Thanks right-wingers

Sarah Palin has joined the fray of folks saying that what the Northeast needs are Republicans that don't believe what their constituents do. Shine on you crazy diamonds. In the traditionally Republican NY-23rd here are the poll numbers:

Research 2000 for Daily Kos, New York's 23rd District, 10/19/09-10/21/09, Likely Voters, MoE +/- 4%

Bill Owens (D) 35
DeDe Scozzafava (R) 30
Doug Hoffman (C) 23

As promised earlier in the week, DK polls the contentious three-way battle in upstate New York to replace Republican Congressman John McHugh. Our findings, as it happens, mirror fairly closely the results of the other public poll (PDF file) in the race, which was released last week by Siena College.

Democrat Bill Owens is rapidly becoming the beneficiary of a brutal schism between the GOP and movement conservatives, and it is growing more plausible that the Democrats may pick up yet another House seat as a result.

Tales from Iowa

Funny, they never show this sort of thing in the Home Security Commercials:

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa – A woman surprised by a man in the front room of her home near Council Bluffs grabbed a plastic toy bat and hit him repeatedly until he ran out the front door.

As described it was actually a frightening scene, but those plastic bats are not exactly WMDs. Good for her.

Good thing it wasn't a felony

Or that would be one less member of the GOP base that could vote:

A Minnesota man has pleaded guilty to driving his motorized La-Z-Boy chair while drunk. A criminal complaint says 62-year-old Dennis LeRoy Anderson told police he left a bar in the northern Minnesota town of Proctor on his chair after drinking eight or nine beers.

Something for the Blue Dogs

From El Gato Negro:

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Dear Dr. Atta J. Turk -- The Spam Files
Date: October 22, 2009, 4:33 a.m.

Subject: Hot MILF's in Heat

Go here...(website link)

First of all, I would assume something that is "hot" will also contain "heat".

Second of all, "MILF" what a delightful phrase (rolling eyes) to enter the popular lexicon in the last decade. Thank you shitty movies.

Third, it's nice that pornographic actress has gone from a short-lived profession that was the parlance of drug addicts, sex addicts, and desperate runaways to be a full-fledged career. Who are the Rolling Stones or the Who of the porn industry anyway?

Behold the new economy. Middle-age based sex videos and tattoos, the great new American industries. All ironically arising during the Era of Bush.

Fourth, what is MILF porn anyway? It's a way for older men to jerk off without feeling EVEN more like a pervert. "Hey, at least I'm objectifying someone nearer my age!"

Thanks SPAM. Whether emanating from Nigeria or the University of Tennessee College of Law, there's always a post in there somewhere.

Oh dear...

Somebody's freudian slip is showing.

A graphic representation of self-immolation

Via the Great Orange Satan, New Jersey where the Republican is plunging against an unpopular incumbent.

And in other races that also have little to do with Obama -- as will be pontificated upon as being so by the Village -- but very much to do with shitty Candidates, Virginia has the opposite problem. Two awful candidates -- but the Democrat Deeds matches cluelessness with a supreme lack of charisma. Politicians with that combination usually are not, what would you call them, oh yeah, politicians.


Never forget it doesn't exist for right-wingers.

Jonah Goldberg, April 23, 2002, crying out for going to war in Iraq:

"Every ten years or so, the United States needs to pick up some small crappy little country and throw it against the wall, just to show the world we mean business."

Something just above "Operation Reinhard" and on par with "The Commissar Order" in historical morality.

Professional consequences suffered?

None. Just a book contract to Liberals the real fascists.

Somehow I missed this

I have to imagine some blogger noticed this exactly nine months ago, but in doing my little shitty-photoshop on Bernie Kerik's mugshot I remembered that its wearer was a woman from Texas named Pat Peale, who in mocking Kerry's war wounds pissed on every wounded veteran.

So I hit "the google" and found out ol' Pat Peale made one last visit to infamy at the end of the line of Bush when he returned to Texas to begin a career of flipping-coins and getting paid to attend "self-help seminars" (Step One: Have a famous, wealthy and powerful Daddy):

Peale said she got a chance to talk with both Laura Bush and George Bush.

“I saw Laura, and she looked up and said, ‘Pat, I can’t believe you came all the way from Gainesville,’” she said.

She and some companions also managed to get a few photos with both the Bushs.

George Bush, stopping by to talk for a moment with Peale and some of his Crawford neighbors, made a promise, she said.

“He said, ‘We love you and we’re going to be seeing a lot of you now,’” Peale said Bush told them.

Missing something

Other than Rudy giving him a big burly "bear" hug, I knew the Bernie Kerik mug-shot was missing something.

There, all better.

Touching stories from Lee Greenwood's America, Vol. I

In the annals of football and sacrifice, Pat Tillman has nothing on this poor soul who has had the league of Pat Patriot soil his love of 'Murica more thoroughly than his hero's pants soiled were in rehab.

Mark Muller, owner of Max Motors and wannabe arms dealer (he saved Missourians from having to make the hard choice between a pickup truck and an assault rifle this summer by giving away free AK-47s with purchase of a truck), is now claiming that he's canceling his Kansas City Chiefs season tickets because the NFL supposedly blocked Limbaugh's attempt to buy the St. Louis Rams.

And in the most laughable story of prioritizing one's life ever...

Muller told the Cybercast News Service that Limbaugh was the reason he first went to an NFL game. Muller claimed that he heard Limbaugh endorse the NFL on his radio program in the '80s. Muller supposedly talked to his wife, and they "gave up everything in our life at the time [so] we could buy two season tickets, no more dinners out, nothing."

They gave up EVERYTHING! Suck it Arbys!

Poor me, I chose an NFL club the ol' fashioned way. I lived in the general geographic area of one (and as this was the Minnesota Vikings I don't want to go into too much depth over how that has worked out for me).

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Place Your Bets

Which dumbass hack will be first to ask Gibbs what Obama's opinion is of this at tomorrow's gaggle?

Will it be self-aggrandizing tool Jake Tapper -- or has Jakie made enough of a fool of himself this week? Maybe someone from Tapper's beloved "sister organization" Fox "News"?

Guesses in comments, please.

We can all do this

Jake Tapper defends FoxNews as "real journalism"


Jake Tapper defends Bukkakke as real act of making love.

Jake Tapper defends Wal-Mart as small town America.

Jake Tapper defends RuPaul as real lady.

'Cause I'm a Lazy Bastard*

All you get is a link to some extra-special Pareene (who is ordinarily extraordinary, but who today is extra-specially so).

And speaking of extra-special, when has Jake Tapper been anything other than an extra-special self-aggrandizing tool?

*Ten points and a big fat sloppy virtual kiss to whomever can name the person who immortalized this phrase. Bonus points if you can name the venue in which it was uttered.

Update: Look, you might as well read everything Pareene is writing today (here and here). He is obviously brilliant (and not a lazy bastard).

Bernie applies the broom-handle to himself

Well, I guess this will be something for perennial under performer Rudy Giuliani to ignore as he loses his next election.

Judge revokes Bernard Kerik bail, sends ex-NYPD top cop to jail for trying to taint jury pool

(via Atrios)

Taint is a word that is always applicable to Bernie Kerik.

No word on Judith Regan and conjugal visits.

Aspirational Elitist that I am...

I naturally watch "Mad Men".

I must say things are spinning out of control -- only 3 episodes left of the year 1963.

Something tells me that the JFK Assassination either happens as everything finally blows up in Don Draper's face. Or it squelches it all and he avoids dire consequences.

But the fact that 11/22/1963 was seen as a turning point in the Nation's culture, I have to think it is a catalyst for Don and Betty (and Don and the Twix Commercial Lady*) etc..

And there it is, confirmation that on occasion I watch some elitist TV.

(*"OMG I love blogging!")

Oh Hoo-hah-ray!

Sarah Palin will be appearing on OPRAH! (legally obligated to write it that way) next month sans the wingnut that actually wrote her book "Going Rogue".

Meanwhile, Rich Lowry has just signed up to be the charter member of "Oprah's Book Rub".

I just hope the pages are of high enough quality to avoid too many sticking together.

The sad sad state of the Ultra-Rich

To paraphrase Jeopardy Record Holder Wolf Blitzer:

"Those poor people, so incredibly rich and so white."

America's most oppressed minority.

Oh, how they whine in their wine cellars:

Dr. Daniel E. Fass, another chairman of the [Obama fundraising] event who lives surrounded by financiers in Greenwich, Conn., said: "The investment community feels very put-upon. They feel there is no reason why they shouldn't earn $1 million to $200 million a year, and they don't want to be held responsible for the global financial meltdown."

The Party of Crazy

This is why the Obama Administration criticizes FoxNews, because the right-wing is full of folks that beat this idiotic and destructive drum:

More than half of Republicans either say President Obama doesn't love America or say they aren't sure of his feelings toward the country he leads.

That's according to a new national poll due out tomorrow from Public Policy Polling. The firm gave TPMDC an early look this afternoon.

PPP polled 766 registered voters nationwide. Of the GOP respondents, 27% agreed that Obama "loves America," 48% disagreed and 25% said they weren't sure.

I spent the last five plus years bashing George Bush. I've accused him of a lot of things -- from violating civil liberties to war mongering to a daily narrative of his rank stupidities and lack of common sense.

So while I accused them of being rather "un-American" in some sense I never accused him of hating the country (whether he gave a shit about a large group of "Americans" is another matter). I certainly accused them of fucking the country, but never not loving it.

It's a line that's kind of hard to cross -- but FoxNews, Limbaugh and Beck cross it every damn day. And they rarely get called out for it by the spineless legitimate press.

Pelosi ready to fight

Amazing how all the budget hawk blue-dog BS falls away when it meets reality, except of course, with self-proclaimed blue dogs. While Harry Reid dithers and Obama, at least publicly, chooses to impersonate Grover Cleveland instead of FDR, at least Nancy Pelosi is taking a stand on better health care policy:

House Democrats are aiming to scale back the cost of their health care bill to well below President Barack Obama's preferred price tag by giving the government a strong hand in selling insurance in competition with the private market.

Obama has sought to spend no more than $900 billion over a 10-year period. The initial cost of the House bill was more than $1 trillion. On Tuesday, House Democratic leaders received a new cost estimate of $871 billion from congressional budget umpires who measured a robust version of a so-called public option for health insurance

Golly, it's good policy, it covers far more people, it's popular with the public, it saves money in the budget.

Surely, this is the policy choice of tyrants and slave holders! We must choose the more expensive, less efficient, crappier policy that saves the real harbingers of freedom and liberty, the health insurance company executive.

(pic from here)

[Cross-Posted at Firedoglake]

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

For you Movie Buffs -- The Primordial Glenn Beck Story is on today

A Face in the Crowd at 3:45 p.m. eastern, Turner Classic Movies.

Awesome performance by Andy Griffith.

Tales from Iowa

Par for the course...

Nothing, not even a train, could stop Kenyan Simon Sawe from winning the Des Moines Marathon for the second time.

Sawe was leading countryman David Tuwei by 10 seconds when, after a left turn onto the final stretch on Southwest Fourth, he stared right at a train passing on the road.

"Nobody is prepared for that scenario," said Sawe, the inaugural champion in 2002. "I couldn't believe it. It was a long train."

Tuwei caught the 40-year-old Sawe and the two waited ... and waited ... and waited for the train to pass. Third-place Geoffrey Birgen had nearly caught the two leaders when the train finally crossed the street about 40 to 50 seconds later.


Probably not Kate Hudson either:

Insert easy joke about "Buying a Bowel" here:

Shedding light on Netanyahu's forthcoming Palestinian Homeland Policy

Makes you wonder if BiBi and Bolton's stache have gotten together for a cunning plan...

Stewart Nozette, 52, was arrested this afternoon at the Mayflower Hotel in downtown Washington by counterespionage agents from the FBI's on suspicion that he was meeting with agents from the Israeli intel group known as the Mossad...

...An 18-page FBI affidavit, signed by Special Agent Leslie G. Martell, says Nozette in January 2009 told a colleague "that if the United States government tried to put him in jail" on an unrelated matter, Nozette would move to Israel or another unidentified foreign country and "tell them everything" he knows.

And what does Nozette know?*

Nozette helped develop the lunar Mini-RF probe which recently helped confirm the presence of water on the moon. He's responsible for bombing the moon, folks!

*in all seriousness he worked on stuff like SDI and missile defense also, which I guess was more the reason for any sellable info.

"And especially me, Howard Kurtz"

"There was so much about Letterman's sex life to discuss and that's what is far more important than some boring Senator, especially a Republican Family-Values one. It's not like the latter was a a hypocrite or anything, take it from me, Howie Kurtz."

But the Village doesn't like it...

And the Blue Dogs sing la la la:

A new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows that support for a government-run health-care plan to compete with private insurers has rebounded from its summertime lows and wins clear majority support from the public...

But in a sign of the fragile coalition politics that influence the negotiations in Congress, Obama's approval ratings on health-care reform are slipping among his fellow Democrats even as they are solidifying among independents and seniors. Among Democrats, strong approval of his handling of the issue has dropped 15 percentage points since mid-September.

Might that be because Obama is spending too much fucking time listening and worrying about the Villagers? Yeah, that would be correct.


A shadowy "Chris Wallace" is telling "heroically unshadowed" Glenn Beck that he was present when Obama staffer Anita Dunn made a public speech about shadowy secret business out in the open and everything that was all Marxist and shit if you deleted some parts of it and created new parts in your own fevered imagination.

Alert Howie Kurtz, this needs to be thoroughly propogated in his media column to avoid writing about those WaPo Salons and fill out the other third of his column after Balloon Boy and David Letterman.

America's Concern Troll

Haven't we seen this column from Cohen the last three weeks? He's not only their shittiest writer, Cohen is now the creative equivalent of Krauthammer -- churning out the same goddamn column every fucking week.

"Who is Barack Obama, I dunno, I can barely type out a cogent paragraph, but if I keep on publishing the same thing it might start to make sense, sensible 'Village House-Liberal' that I am."

The power of the Porn-Stache

You cannot hope to stop cartoon figures that have served ABC News, from Brit Hume to Geraldo to the latest jewel in the plastic-Burger King-crown, you can only hope to contain them at an appropriate location.

John Stossel made his first appearance as a FOX News employee today on The Live Desk with Martha MacCallum and Trace Gallagher.

Gallagher asked Stossel why he joined the FOX family: "The health care story is one of the reasons," Stossel said. While still with ABC News Stossel said he'd produced an hour-long healthcare special, but, "I could not get it on the air at ABC. They were doing Michael Jackson stories. Fox covers the news, so finally, the freedom to talk about a few things I know about."

And, as is par for the course for John Stossel, he missed the truth…by….that….much:

Update from an ABC News insider: "John knows full well that he did not produce an hour on healthcare. It was a five minute retread of a piece that had been done a year earlier.

He's such a perfect fit for Rupert's empire.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Monday, October 19, 2009

Media Criticism is NOT the job of the WaPo Media Critic

From the Howie the Putz's "Putz Chat" going on now:

Washington, D.C.: I think that one of the best points made in the last few weeks in this White House/FOX kerfuffle was made by the Daily Show. There was a big gay rights march in D.C. last weekend and FOX spent about 4 minutes on it, compared with literally weeks and weeks of coverage of a similarly-sized march by the Tea Partiers, complete with live on-the scene coverage. I was surprised you didn't touch on this at all. It's a perfect example of even though FOX does "news" during the day, that "news" is driven by conservative talking points.

Howard Kurtz: You mean that Fox News devoted more attention to the tea-party protests (cheered on by some of its hosts) than to the gay rights demonstration? That is truly shocking.

Yes, your sarcasm over news bias is totally not appropriate for someone as well-healed as you Howard.

Now back to whether Balloon Boy has any thoughts on David Letterman's sex life?...

Well, at least Philly has the Phillies

Because the Eagles lost to the Raiders (Jamarcus Russell plays competently, wtf?). But not only did they lose to the Raiders, the EAGLES fell to the PIGEONS.

Dear Readers...

I love you too much to post a conservative guy trying to rap about Obama winning a Nobel Peace Prize directly.

But not so much that I won't link to someone who has posted said monstrosity directly.

Jon Stewart's statement was about right

Last Thursday (was it Thursday?) on the Daily Show Jon Stewart made a quick aside to the "Balloon Boy" story.

"Oh thank goodness balloon boy was safe...LET'S GET HIM!"

The whole story is the epitome of how awful cable news is and how easy they are to exploit. If the father perpetrated this hoax then prosecute him, but metaphorically take your torches to the cable media as well, they're acting all indignant now, but if they weren't such whores to begin with this would never have become what it did.

"Oh thank goodness Balloon Boy is safe, let's get Wolf Blitzer! (metaphorically)"

Because there isn't a bigger moron (not on FoxNews) on television.

Take Down

Lord knows it's not the first bit of criticism of the WaPo editorial page, but Alex Pereene's take down is one of the best, read the whole thing:

And on October 10, the Post published an insane editorial on how the Nobel Prize should've been awarded to a murdered Iranian protester. This suggests that either the entire editorial board doesn't know that Nobel Peace Prizes are never awarded posthumously or they simply don't give a shit. The piece is still not corrected, because presumably any "correction" would have to read "the entire premise of this editorial is bullshit, sorry."

So how do you follow that up? How about by running an op-ed by a law professor and a right-wing think tank goon about how Obama's Nobel Peace Prize was... unconstitutional, maybe? Who knows! Who cares! They acknowledge that two other sitting presidents have received the award, but they do not even do the meaningless-but-intellectually defensible thing of arguing that those awards were also unconstitutional, they just say this time it's different because Obama got it so therefore Congress should forbid him from accepting it, because of the House of Saud.

In conclusion, blogs are killing newspapers by being irresponsible and not caring about "the truth."

Just wondering

Between Balloon Boy and the English Premier League has there been a bigger week for inflatable objects since the Hindenburg disaster?

[Is there some inflatable doll story I've missed in the last 70 years?]

Project Much?

Ever have one of those moments when somebody says something you do a double-take and think they would not dare say something so laughable?

If you are like me, you've had that since January 20, 2001.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the world's greatest projectionist Karl Rove:

...the [Obama] White House is "getting very arrogant and slippery in its dealings with people, and if you dare to oppose them, they're going to come hard at you and they're going to cut your legs off."

Only in Karl Rove World (a twisted world primarily composed of cocktail franks, headcheese, and ocular schtupping) is this a credible statement. Yeah, Valerie Plame, David Iglesias must think it's just awesome to hear.

[Cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Well, that's certainly different...

The design of the 2010 Olympic medals. Well, they're unique:

They look like something out of a Dali painting.

Not to be noticed by Howard Kurtz

Those paid salons the Washington Post was caught trying to throw -- that they expressed they were shocked, SHOCKED about. Well, turns out they kind of lied:

Washington Post executive editor Marcus Brauchli says he knew more about the controversial “salons” the paper had planned than previously has been reported, including the fact that they were being billed as “off-the-record” to potential sponsors.

As usual, this will not be noted by Howard Kurtz -- there's discussion of Letterman's sex life to be had.