Saturday, January 10, 2009

Late Night


More thread

Not intercepted by the Cardinals.

Media Matters

From Jamison Foser.


In that other war.

KABUL—A homemade bomb killed three U.S. soldiers in the southeastern province of Zabol on Friday, less than 24 hours after two American soldiers died in a suicide bombing at a busy produce market in neighboring Kandahar province, officials said.

The five deaths brought to 637 the number of American troops killed in Afghanistan since the U.S.-led invasion that toppled the extremist Taliban regime in late 2001, according to various monitoring groups. More than 400 soldiers from other coalition forces have also been killed.


Anything going on? Wine and food tonight, iggles tomorrow, here in my corner...

Afternoon Thread


Nice Work

Such a shame it all went bad. Hoocoodanode?

Jan. 10 (Bloomberg) -- Robert Rubin, the former Treasury secretary who advised Citigroup Inc. as it lost $20 billion in the subprime mortgage crisis, resigned his position as senior counselor and won’t stand for re-election to the board.


Rubin, who served at the Treasury’s helm from 1995 to 1999 under President Bill Clinton, was criticized by investors for collecting more than $150 million in pay in a decade while failing to steer Citigroup away from subprime securities. The investments led to four straight quarterly losses and prompted the bank to turn to the government for a rescue package.

“His reputation has very much been damaged by what has happened at Citi,” Bert Ely, chief executive officer of Ely & Co., a bank consulting firm in Alexandria, Virginia, said in a Bloomberg TV interview. “Fair or not, Citi’s problems do reflect negatively on him.”

It's all so unfair.


I do so miss the early day of blogging when liberals would tell me to be nicer to Reynolds.

Republican Washington

It's neat stereotype, but was it really true?

What is the story in your city that no one is covering that you think will make the news this year?
Will Obama cause gentrification in D.C.? The Obama administration will bring thousands of young liberals to D.C. They will be replacing Bush appointees who mostly chose to live in the suburbs or the quasi-suburban neighborhoods of the city. Young Obamaphiles are more likely to want to live in the grittier, up-and-coming urban neighborhoods where young liberals tend to live. Will they exacerbate gentrification and displacement? Or, with the market weakening, will they just keep the neighborhoods steady instead of allowing prices to decline? Will the city become visibly more lively, with new businesses to cater to them? It isn’t just people working for Obama who will have an impact. Left-leaning activists, journalists, etc. are drawn to D.C. right now for the excitement of the new administration. What this will mean for the character of certain neighborhoods such as U Street, Columbia Heights, Mount Pleasant, Logan Circle and Shaw remains to be seen. But once the change becomes apparent, the press will be all over it.


Digby reminds us of the Schiavo situation. It was one of those cases when the Village media was utterly out of touch with public opinion, hyping the size (and sanity) of all of the protesters and assuming, wrongly, that the public was on their side. The issue was not whether the public though Terry Schiavo should have her feeding tube removed, the issue was whether they thought it should be decided on the floor of Congress. People might not have agreed with Michael Schiavo's decision, but at the very least they agreed with his right to make it without it being a national media spectacle and fodder for Republicans in Congress. It was about family and privacy. When it went to Congress I did what I never do and pleaded with every Congressional staffer I knew (not many) to have their members stay the fuck out of this as I knew the public was going to be repulsed by it, which they were.

Morning Thread


--Molly I.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Deep Thought



Rock on.

Darning Holes

Filling in the gaps with thread.

Evening Thread


Mo Money

Though we're inside the 15 day window so Bush really can't get it.

Senior Bush administration officials are preparing to ask lawmakers for the second half of the $700 billion financial rescue package despite intense opposition in Congress and then have President Bush use his veto if the request is voted down, three sources familiar with the matter said.


Under the emergency rescue legislation approved by Congress in October, the administration must inform lawmakers that it wants access to the second installment of $350 billion. Congress would have 15 days to reject the request before Treasury can begin to tap the funds.

Deep Thought

The Vivian Girls exist for all of those people who have been clamoring for a second album by The Shaggs.

Opportunities Shrink

Economic upheaval means shrinking opportunities.

Jan. 9 (Bloomberg) -- The University of California system may cut the number of in-state first-year students by 2,300, or 6 percent, as the recession squeezes the budget.

Bush Post-Presidency

I assume that whatever broader interest there is in paying Bush loads of money to give speeches, the conservative movement and the association of plutocrats in good standing will make sure that Bush will live a lavish lifestyle until the end. The real question, I think, is how invested they'll be in continuing to make Bush feel like a very important person.

Wingnuttery Everywhere

CNBC just showed an email from one of their viewers which said something to the effect that Obama's just going to waste a lot of money, and that plans to spend money on green infrastructure are just a big waste of money because solar panel manufacturers are all offshore because our environmental regulations have driven them out of the country.

Sadly, no!

Message Received

Well, I hope it was, anyway. It isn't controversial to state that there are a lot of underfunded and deferred infrastructure projects in this country. It isn't controversial to state that expenditures on such projects (and extending UI and increasing food stamps) perform as a better stimulus than do tax cuts. It isn't controversial (right now) to state that we need a massive, expensive, and effective stimulus. The conclusion one should draw from these uncontroversial points is rather obvious.


I don't think this is or will be "Great Depression II," and even "worst recession since the Great Depression" can be true without it being anywhere near as bad as the Depression. Still I think there's a good chance we're in for a period of economic and social upheaval which won't leave the country quite the same once it's over.

Lunch Thread


So Awesome

Pajamas Media sends Joe the Plumber to Israel. He explains that since he's Christian God will protect him.


While it's true that there aren't necessarily an infinite number of shovel ready sexy mass transit projects that can be rolled out instantly, there are still plenty of places where dollars can be spent fast. First, and the least sexy, are maintenance projects which are needed but endlessly deferred by cash-strapped transit agencies. Things like "station refurbishment" aren't exciting, but they are needed. Second, even if you can't fund full-scale projects, you can fund planning. Engineers and transport economists need jobs too! Third, orders can be put in for needed train cars and buses.

And The Economic Horror Continues

CNBC tells me that World Wrestling Entertainment has announced a 10% staff reduction.

Part Time

The increase in involuntary part time workers is staggering.

It's only going to get worse.


-524K jobs. Unders win again. Unemployment at 7.2%.

...U6, a broader measure of unemployment, is up to 13.5%.


The change in total nonfarm employment for October was revised from -320,000 to
-423,000, and the change for November was revised from -533,000 to -584,000. Monthly
revisions result from additional sample reports and the monthly recalculation of sea-
sonal factors.

Morning Thread

The jobs report comes out in less than 45 minutes.

How low a note can President Bunnypants leave upon?

Thursday, January 08, 2009


Rock harder.

Thursday Night

Rock on.

(ht reader m)

Place Your Bets

Jobs report comes out tomorrow. I always take the under bet, meaning I'm betting the number is under (including more negative) the "consensus" estimate, which is currently at -500K.

Because people occasionally confuse the weekly new jobless claims numbers with the monthly jobs report, remember they measure different things. The new jobless claims is about new people filing for unemployment, the monthly jobs report, derived from 2 different surveys, is about estimating the change in total number of jobs, along with various measures of the unemployment rate.

Dinner Thread

Grilling fish.

Happy Hour Thread


Sovereign Nation? 3rd House of Congress?

I'm not entirely sure why Citigroup gets to bargain with senators, but this might be moderately good news.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Democratic lawmakers have reached a deal with Citigroup Inc. on a plan to let bankruptcy judges alter home loans in an effort to prevent foreclosures and said they expected other lenders to follow.

The lawmakers said Thursday they aim to attach the plan to President-elect Barack Obama's economic stimulus legislation.

The compromise between New York-based Citigroup and Sens. Richard Durbin of Illinois, Charles Schumer and Christopher Dodd of Connecticut, would be limited to loans made before the bill is signed. Obama has said he backs the concept.

Afternoon Thread


Deep Thought

Obama had better hurry up and apply the Fairness Doctrine to Twitter in order to prevent the new Republican revolution from taking off.

Made Off

It'll be really interesting to see how this story plays out.

LONDON (Reuters) - Disgraced U.S. financier Bernard Madoff moved nearly $160 million of his own assets to his British-based firm in 2007, according to company accounts and filings obtained by Reuters on Thursday.

Madoff, accused by U.S. authorities of running a Ponzi scheme for many years in a fraud worth up to $50 billion, moved the assets via the allotment of two sets of new shares in Madoff Securities International Ltd, a British firm he controlled.

Deep Thought

I really don't think I needed to hear Barbara Mikulski and Tom Coburn swap dieting advice in the Senate office building elevator.

Everybody Agrees

This latest entry from Brit Hume probably won't help us to clear up the age old "stupid or lying" question, but it is quite impressive how Fox News manages to consistently construct an alternative reality. I previously suggested that the best thing they could do now is go all the way with it and present their "news" from a parallel universe where Sarah Palin is president. It's really what their viewers want.

Nobody Could Have Predicted

There are some decent reasons for favoring defined contribution plans over defined benefit ones, but the idea that we're all expert investors who want to spend time managing our vast portfolios is absurd as the idea that we should become medical experts who make decisions about which health care treatments we need to receive.

"This is the biggest test that the 401(k) plan has seen to date, and it has failed," says Robyn Credico, head of defined-contribution consulting at Watson Wyatt Worldwide, noting that many baby boomers are ready to retire. "We've put people close to retirement in a very challenging position."

The most obvious pitfall is that 401(k) plans shift all retirement-planning risks -- not saving enough, making poor investment choices, outliving savings -- to untrained individuals, who often don't have the time, inclination or know-how to manage them. But even when workers make good choices, a market meltdown near the end of their working careers can still blow their savings to smithereens.

The "smart" advice for people nearing retirement is that they pull most of their money out of riskier investments (stocks) and shift it into safe investments (bonds, money markets, guaranteed annuity plans, etc.) And since everyone's an expert investor, of course everyone does that! Or, well, not.

Continuing Claims

While there weren't quite as many new lucky duckies this week, the ranks of existing lucky duckies continue to swell.

Continuing claims jumped to 4.611 million in the week ended Dec.

27, the latest week for which the data is available, from 4.510 million the previous week. This was the highest reading since the week ending Nov. 20 1982.

That's slightly misleading, as the population has grown since 1982. But still a lot of lucky duckies!

Shorter David Broder

Nothing makes me happier than a Democrat dedicated to pleasing Republicans. Except maybe actual Republicans, that is.

Thursday Is New Jobless Day

CNBC 467,000 new lucky duckies.

Helicopter Mervyn

Bank of England sets rates to Lowest Evah.

No Senator Tweety

And I'm spared a nightmare.

Chris Matthews, the host of the MSNBC program “Hardball,” told his staff on Wednesday night that he would not run for the Senate in 2010 from Pennsylvania.

Morning Thread

Who brought the donuts?

--Molly I.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009


A little bit of voting for Rumproast in the otherwise moronic Weblog Awards would be a blow for the True, the Good, and the Funny.

Wednesday Night Thread

Pretty Sure it's Wednesday, anyway.

Back to the Future

My understanding is that auto loans were once a major product for credit unions, until the automakers muscled them out with their own financing arms.

NEW YORK (AP) -- Automakers General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC, along with a group of credit unions, said Wednesday that they are expanding to all 50 states programs that offer low-cost loans and special pricing incentives to credit union members.

David Adams, president and chief executive of the Michigan Credit Union League and the national credit union group CUcorp, said the expansion of the ''Invest in America'' program is expected to give 90 million members of nearly 8,000 credit unions potential access to low-interest loans for GM and Chrysler vehicles.

Better Democrats

And a plan and organization to get them into power.

Even More Thread

What's going on?

Afternoon Thread


And They Get Even More Absurd

Really impossible to parody.

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) -- Joe The Plumber is putting down his wrenches and picking up a reporter's notebook.

The Ohio man who became a household name during the presidential campaign says he is heading to Israel as a war correspondent for the conservative Web site


As I said before, I don't really care what Ann Coulter says, but I have no idea why mainstream news organizations have such contempt for their viewers, themselves, and any concept of factual journalism.

Pending Legislation

I guess we're going to extend this one over several more news cycles.

Playing Poker With Harry Reid

As Jane predicted, AP/NPR are reporting that Burris is going to be seated after all. Good thing we had all that Politico-loving "drama" for, you know, no reason at all. Unlike Josh I was actually losing a little sleep over these shenanigans, as it opens the door for seriously playing politics with the process of seating senators. And once you open those doors, Republicans are good at running through them.

Friday's Jobs Numbers Today

Not really, but every month the ADP report, a private estimate of what the gov't report will tell us on Friday, comes out a couple of days beforehand.

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Private-sector employers shed 693,000 jobs in December, a private employment service said on Wednesday in a report that was far worse than expected and pointed to more ugly news from the government's jobs data due later this week.

The drop, much bigger than the revised 476,000 private sector jobs lost in November, is consistent with about a 670,000 fall in December non-farm payrolls, said Joel Prakken, chairman of Macroeconomic Advisers LLC, which jointly develops the private sector employment report with ADP Employer Services.

That's a big owie.

Gonna Take Forever To Clean The Town Up

The Bushies aren't going anywhere.

Morning Thread

Bacon and English muffins. But none of that nasty Earl Grey tea.

Too much fun

Here's more thread.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Late Night

Have fun.

John Galt Corp.

Of course.
NEW YORK (AP) -- A construction official falsely billed $1.2 million for supplies not delivered to clean up a toxic ground zero skyscraper in exchange for cash, clothes and trips to the Caribbean, prosecutors said Tuesday. Robert Chiarappa was the purchasing agent for the John Galt Corp., which was hired to clean up the former Deutsche Bank tower after it was heavily damaged in the 2001 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center across the street.

Tuesday Night Thread



Not exactly shiny happy people.

As Federal Reserve officials met last month to confront the deepening recession, they worried that even a dramatic cut in interest rates and unprecedented new measures in monetary policy would not be enough to cauterize the country’s economic troubles quickly.


“The overwhelming message gleaned from the minutes of the meeting is one of fear — fear of a deep recession, and fear of a debilitating deflationary spiral that would capsize a debt-laden economy,” Joshua Shapiro, chief United States economist at MFR, wrote in a note.

Happy Hour Thread


No Senator Jeb in '10

At least one good thing a Bush family member has done.

Death to DRM

Apple's iTunes DRM was so easy to break it was basically just a minor nuisance, but still it was a pointless minor nuisance which did nothing to prevent any music piracy. Glad the record companies may have finally figured that out.

He also said Apple worked with all the major record labels to get songs free of ''digital rights management'' technology that limits people's ability to copy songs or move them to different devices.

Holiday Over

Anyway, a big reason why travel is a pain isn't because it makes it harder for my to deliver my words of wisdom to my adoring readers, it's because during the middle of the day I'm hitting 90+ emails per hour. Leave the computer behind for a couple of hours and...

So Many Swearing Senators

Went to check out the swearing-in ceremony from one of the Senate office buildings along with a reception. Was pretty creepy watching Dick Cheney give that oath.

Outrageous Partisanship

Somehow Nancy Pelosi elected Speaker instead of that nicely tanned Mr. Boehner.

Aftanoon Thread

Closed And Empty

Norm Coleman's office.

ha ha

Cram Down

Allowing bankruptcy judges to deal with mortgage debt has always been the most sensible way to deal with the foreclosure crisis in a way which allows people to keep their homes without reinflating the bubble. Hopefully it really passes. In the old regime of 10%+ down, ability to pay, and 30 year fixed rate mortgages exempting mortgages from bankruptcy probably had a certain logic to it, but there's no reason that all of these "exotic" mortgages should be. Hopefully it actually passes.

Brad Miller has been pushing for this for some time.


Matt Stoller gets EATED by the House of Representatives.

Still Building

I'm in some exurban zone between Wilmington and Baltimore, and there are plenty of newly minted and still under construction housing developments of the very worst kind. I think one thing people fail to notice sometimes is just much land these things use. I remember hearing a talk in the 90s, when I was living in Providence, about the attempts to revitalize the downtown core of that city. To provide a sense of scale the presenter demonstrated using scale models how the entire Providence downtown area easily fit within the footprint of a moderately sized local suburban mall&parking lot.

The Magic Of Wireless Broadband

For a long time travel - even relatively short trips - would stress me out quite a bit as even a trip to New York or DC during the day was incompatible with this blogging thing. Getting a USB wireless broadband plan cured that. Now I just need one of those little netbook thingies which suddenly became cheap...


We often forget just how corrupt state and local politics is - at all levels - and that the real tragedy of the long decline of the news business isn't that Time magazine has to fire a few reporters, or whatever, it's that there are fewer local news outlets and reporters to shine a light on this stuff. And it isn't just big city corruption, though that tends to get what little investigative attention there is, this stuff is rampant - and often legal! - everywhere.

After extracting $17 million in donations from Peco Energy, former State Sen. Vincent J. Fumo raised the ante with Verizon Pennsylvania, demanding more than $50 million in contributions to settle a legal dispute, Verizon's former president testified yesterday.

Fumo wanted Verizon to deposit $10 million in his family-owned bank. He wanted $2.5 million in legal work for his law firm. And he wanted $15 million to go to Citizens' Alliance for Better Neighborhoods - the nonprofit that is at the center of the federal indictment against Fumo.

Daniel Whelan, who was then the president of Verizon Pennsylvania, told the jury in Fumo's federal corruption trial that he rejected most of the demands.

Morning Thread

Two weeks and counting...

Goosed Porter

Given DiFi's little temper tantrum over Panetta, I was curious how she reacted to the appointment of the buffoon Porter Goss to the top CIA post.

"After much thought and a careful review of the record, I voted today to confirm the nomination of Representative Porter Goss to be Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (DCI). But I do have some serious concerns - especially about the impact of this nomination on intelligence reform and his record of partisanship in Congress.

I believe the President should have the prerogative to appoint who he wants to be the DCI, or for any other senior position, subject only to the requirement that the person be qualified for the job. As a former CIA officer, a former Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, and a former Army intelligence officer, I think he is certainly qualified. If he is confirmed, I would hope that he demonstrates the necessary independence required of the DCI. But there are still some open questions, which gave me some hesitancy in supporting the nomination.



Monday, January 05, 2009

The Company

It's about the club, insider knowledge and privilege, and, yes, crimes, criminals, and their enablers.

Gotta keep it in the family, otherwise who knows what might happen?

The Heroic Fantasies Of Cowards

If you want to imagine you're in the military so badly, just join the freaking military already.

Senator Franken

I was at a conference in Minnesota over the summer at some point, and every local I talked to was really pissed off the Franken was their candidate, thought he was running a lousy campaign, was convinced he was going to lose, etc.

Dinner Thread


Deep Thought

I can't believe NBC is depriving Ann Coulter her first amendment right to appear on their networks any time she wants to.


Yeah, good luck with that.

Your Liberal Media

Stupid bloggers like me can make this point over and over again and Howie Kurtz will just stare blankly and say, "what's your point?" But, to make it again, it's quite amazing that MSNBC has become the very liberal cable network in what is supposedly a very liberal media universe generally, by virtue of the fact that liberals have 2 hours of original programming per weekday, while conservative Republican Joe Scarborough has his show on for 3 hours every day.

Cue Screeching Wingnuts

3...2...1... now!


From last March. Works for me.

More recently, President Bush vetoed a law that would require the CIA and all the intelligence services to abide by the same rules on torture as contained in the U.S. Army Field Manual.

But all forms of torture have long been prohibited by American law and international treaties respected by Republican and Democratic presidents alike.

Our forefathers prohibited "cruel and unusual punishment" because that was how tyrants and despots ruled in the 1700s. They wanted an America that was better than that. Torture is illegal, immoral, dangerous and counterproductive. And yet, the president is using fear to trump the law.

I think it's more that Bush was trumping the law by, you know, trumping it. Otherwise known as breaking it. But, well, not bad for the Village.

Shorter Andrew Keen

The Nazis could not have gained power and committed genocide without the internets.


I don't really have any opinions about Panetta - I probably once did, but memories of those days are becoming hazy - but I'm glad Obama has chosen someone to head the CIA who wasn't involved with torturing and driving inmates insane.

Plummeting Car Sales

Not surprised.

DETROIT (AP) -- Ford Motor Co.'s U.S. sales plummeted 32 percent in December and Toyota Motor Corp.'s fell 37 percent as car and truck buyers continued to steer clear of showrooms due to the dismal economy.

For many people cars are basically a necessity, but new cars aren't.


It appears that Obama's appointed a crazy hippie freak to the OLC who thinks it's appropriate to be outraged when high ranking government officials lie and break the law. The appropriate Village way is to declare them to be elder statesmen and let bygones be bygones.

Sorry, Norm

Lost again.

The Minnesota Supreme Court today rejected a bid by Norm Coleman in the disputed U.S. Senate election to consider counting hundreds of rejected absentee ballots from mostly Republican-leaning areas.


Beep Beep.


I'm not one to push for people to concede elections. There's a tendency by our media to portray "votes tallies at the time they want to go to bed on election night" as the real election counts when they generally aren't. If the Coleman campaign genuinely believes they have a legitimate legal challenges to bring, they should feel free. But if they're just playing games, it's probably time to stop.

Because They're Really Really Stupid

One of the enduring amusements of right blogistan is Red State, those impotent self-promoters who just can't ever quite understand why they are not Very Very Important And Powerful. You can respect them enough for understanding that The Left has managed to do something online that The Right has not, but after that it's all pretty much pointing and laughing.

But, basically, they fail because they and their readers are, well, pretty stupid. What the online right doesn't get is that they had all the "power" a few years ago, and they've had lots of money thrown at them (PJ Media, etc.), and they hitched it all to George Bush and his Excellent Iraqi Adventure. Not much of an audience for Bush dead enders and Iraq war enthusiasts.

Happy Birthday Mütter

I've never been, as I probably wouldn't make it through without passing out, but it's supposedly quite interesting.

You've probably heard of the Mütter Museum, the 150-year-old Philadelphia institution that is known worldwide for its impressive collection of medical artifacts and oddities.

Besides the primitive surgical tools and macabre organs in jars, the museum is now displaying samples of lipstick, candy, beer steins, antique toy soldiers, paint and pesticide - all pieces in the long and ongoing story of lead's impact on public health.

Back To Cable News Hell

One thing I managed to do during my recent travels was avoid cable news. Very therapeutic.

Good Luck With That


News reports say that Democrats hope to pass an economic plan with broad bipartisan support. Good luck with that.

It's a mystery why Dems think this way.

Morning Thread

Normal Life recommences.... now.

--Molly I.

(And remember, Atrios: Just because you're in a two-man novelty band doesn't mean it's all about bootie....)

Deep Thought

I'm a one man band.

Sunday, January 04, 2009


Dems have been oddly less than supportive of Franken. This is better.


I haven't seen the movie, though I thought the production in New York that I saw was really brilliant. Frank Langella, fellow granfalloon Alpha Chi Rho brother, was truly brilliant, the kind of performance you see (and have opportunity to give) only a couple of times in life.

As a minor side note, comp tix to Frost/Nixon was one of the best perks of blogging I've ever received! Note that, PR people. I'm more likely to review TV pilots and theatrical productions than I am nonfiction books.

CRE Hell

The next phase of fun.

Vacancy rates in office buildings exceed 10 percent in virtually every major city in the country and are rising rapidly, a sign of economic distress that could lead to yet another wave of problems for troubled lenders.

With job cuts rampant and businesses retrenching, more empty space is expected from New York to Chicago to Los Angeles in the coming year. Rental income would then decline and property values would slide further. The Urban Land Institute predicts 2009 will be the worst year for the commercial real estate market “since the wrenching 1991-1992 industry depression.”

While I pulled almost all of the vast Eschaton portfolio out of anything resembling stocks awhile ago, there's still a tiny bit in REIT. DOH!

Shorter Trudy Rubin

I believe I can neatly illustrate the sunk cost fallacy.

Slightly Longer Trudy Rubin:

Too many Americans and far too many Iraqis have died for us to pull out with undue haste and watch Iraq slide backward.


Apparently my local sports franchise has advanced to the next stage of the playoffs.

Deep Thought

I hope Obama watches 24 so that he knows what's really going on in the world.

Iggles Thread


Afternoon Thread


Atrios For Commerce Secretary

It seems there's an opening.

WASHINGTON — New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson has withdrawn his nomination to be President-elect Barack Obama’s commerce secretary amid a grand jury investigation.

Obama’s transition office said Sunday that Obama has accepted Richardson’s withdrawal.

A federal grand jury is investigating how a California company that contributed to Richardson’s political activities won a lucrative New Mexico state contract.

Though I'd prefer Secretary for SUPERTRAINS.

The Coultergeist Is Back

Conservatives (And their mainstream enablers) have long suffered under the misapprehension that Ann Coulter "enrages" liberals or some such nonsense. What does annoy us is that supposedly serious mainstream news outlets regularly give her an uncritical platform to advertise her latest goods.

Money For Everything Except Saving The Economy

Ah, those fiscally conservative Democrats. The ones who spend hundreds of billions to kill people half way across the globe but who balk at a few hundred million to give health care for kids or to, you know, prevent a depression.
Still, Democrats are wary of slowing down the economic stimulus by provoking the opposition of Republicans, who have warned in recent days that the package must be neither excessive nor rushed. They are also fielding concerns from fiscally conservative Democrats.

It's important to remember that in the House, at least, the Dems have a sizeable majority and if they wanted to they could tell the Republicans to pound sand on every single issue. And people get all upset when crazy lefties suggest that running primaries against bad Democrats is a good idea.

Pushing On A String

One can certainly take issue with the bailout and the subsequent behavior by banks and other entities which are stealing all our money, but too many people seem to miss or gloss over the simple idea that maybe banks aren't lending money because it'd be pretty stupid to lend money right now. What are they supposed to lend it for? Commercial real estate development? Jumbo mortgage loans as home prices fall? Car loans when unemployment is rising? Industrial development when capacity usage is declining?

The bailout was a bad idea because they wrote idiots a $700 billion blank check. I know people always think in crises doing something is better than nothing, and for all I know this was the case here, too, but the people in charge have all along failed to understand what was going wrong.


Over there.

BAGHDAD A female suicide bomber blew herself up in Baghdad's Kadhimiyah district Sunday morning as thousands of religious pilgrims flocked to the area's holy Shiite Muslim shrine.

The attack, which killed at least 40 and wounded another 72, was the second in eight days in the district. The earlier bombing killed at least 24. On Friday, a bombing south of Baghdad killed 30.

Sunday Bobbleheads

Document the atrocities.

ABC's "This Week" — Senate appointee and former Illinois Attorney General Roland Burris, D-Ill.; Sens. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.


CBS' "Face the Nation" — Vice President Dick Cheney.


NBC's "Meet the Press" — Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev.


CNN's "Late Edition" — Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat; Govs. Jon Corzine, D-N.J., and Mark Sanford, R-S.C.; former Gov. Mitt Romney, R-Mass.; Queen Noor of Jordan; Israeli Cabinet Minister Isaac Herzog; Former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyu.

"Fox News Sunday" _ Former President George H.W. Bush.

Sunday Morning Thread

With coffee.


Rock on.