Saturday, January 01, 2005

Late Night

Have fun.


A bit of end of the year anguished fun:

But more often than not, the gripe about bloggers isn't that they're unethical. It's that they're small. In the minds of people like Sullivan, not being part of a big structure intrinsically degrades the amateur, makes him a member of a separate and lower class; whereas in fact the solidarity of any journalist should always lie with the blogger before it lies with, say, the president. Journalists are all on the same side, or ought to be, anyway.

Not Time magazine, though. Time lay with the president. Time big-time lay with the president. What was great about Sullivan's "Year of the Insurgents" column last week was how beautifully it threw the rest of the "Person of the Year" issue into contrast. Here's Sullivan bitching about bloggers needing to stay on the margins where they belong; meanwhile, his "respectable" media company is joyously prancing back and forth along 190 glossy pages with George Bush's cock wedged firmly in its mouth.

Evening Thread

Chat away.

Choosing Blue

Bye bye Amazon, hello Barnes and Noble. I've been an Amazon affiliate for some time, which meant I got a few nickles when you clicked through from this site. And, I greatly appreciate all who have taken the time to do it. But, since Barnes and Noble folk appear to be good Democrats, it's time to switch to them. Down side is they don't sell big ticket electronics items which score me a nice commission. So, click through when you remember. Every time you do, Bill O'Reilly cries.


Washington Post, December 28:

The Bush administration pledged an initial $15 million in relief assistance and dispatched emergency relief teams and naval patrol aircraft to the region to conduct an assessment of the damage.

New York Times, today:

In spirit and on paper, the relief program gathered momentum yesterday. President Bush increased the initial American pledge of $35 million to $350 million after Secretary of State Colin L. Powell and other officials told him the need would increase sharply in the weeks ahead.

Bobo's World


SPOKANE, Wash. -- A Spokane woman trying to divorce her estranged husband two years after he was jailed for beating her has been told by a judge she can't get out of the marriage while she's pregnant.

The case pits a first-year attorney who argues that state law allows any couple to divorce if neither spouse challenges it against a longtime family law judge who asserts that the rights of the unborn child in this type of case trump a woman's right to divorce.

"There's a lot of case law that says it is important in this state that children not be illegitamized," Spokane County Superior Court Judge Paul Bastine told The Spokesman-Review newspaper.

Further complicating things, Shawnna Hughes claims her husband is not the child's father.

The bottom line, says Hughes' attorney, Terri Sloyer, is that there's nothing in state law that says a mother can't get a divorce if she's pregnant.

"We don't live in 15th-century England," Sloyer said. "I am absolutely dumbfounded by it."

Hughes' husband, Carlos, was convicted in 2002 of beating her. She separated from him after the attack and filed for divorce last April. She later became pregnant by another man and is due in March.

(via Gilliard)

Happy New Year

Morning thread.

Friday, December 31, 2004

Friday Cat Blogging

New Year's Eve Edition:


You know, I'm happy that the Bush administration has decided to increase the promised aid substantially, but that's no reason for NPR to keep reporting that the Bush administration has increased aid from the "initial offer of $35 million." The initial offer was $15 million. If the Bushies want to claim that was never their final offer, that's fine, but it certainly was their initial offer.

I Never Thought

We'd be having serious conversations about the relative merits of various government issued "torture memos."

Going to Sleep for 6 Months

vaara tells us what's to come.

More Abortions!

This is great:

The U.S. Department of Justice has issued its first-ever medical guidelines for treating sexual-assault victims - without any mention of emergency contraception, the standard precaution against pregnancy after rape.

The omission of the so-called morning-after pill has frustrated and angered victims' advocates and medical professionals who have long worked to improve victims' care.

Gail Burns-Smith, one of several dozen experts who vetted the protocol during its three-year development by Justice's Office on Violence Against Women, said emergency contraception was included in an early draft, and she does not know of anyone who opposed it.

"But in the climate in which we are currently operating, politically it's a hot potato," said Burns-Smith, retired director of Connecticut Sexual Assault Crisis Services.

The "morning after" pill if taken soon enough will prevent conception from even occurring, or failing that it will prevent implantation. Whatever moral qualms one has about abortion generally, the morning after pill is far less "icky" than IVF treatments frequently undergone by our happy natalists. The consequence of keeping raping victims from the pill will inevitably be more actual abortions.

But, they don't really care...

Daniel Pipes Hearts the Writings of Michelle Maglalang

One wonders if there's any racist idiocy that can't get into our liberal media these days...

Morning Thread

Chat away.

"Thank God for Tsunami & 2000 Dead Swedes"

So sayeth Fred Phelps.

Thursday, December 30, 2004

~Glances Around~

Hope this is ok, Atrios. Happy eve of New Year's Eve, everyone.

Early Evening Thread

Chat away.

Weekly Standard Hearts Karimov

Now this is just astounding.

(via Yglesias).


Obviously I encourage people to donate for this cause. I really don't have any knowledge about what organizations are the "best" ones to donate to. The ad to the right is a freebie ad, so don't think that I'm profiting from this in any way. For more suggestions, go here...


Jerome talks about the horrible practice of paying campaign consultants a percentage of ad buys. This is just ridiculous. And, I just want to make clear that the issue isn't the total amount that these people are being paid, it's that their pay is linked to a certain kind of expensive campaign advertisng. Think Bob Shrum's worth $5 million? Go ahead and pay him $5 million - just don't link the money to ad buys.

Are Imports Inferior Goods?

This passage about the dollar in the FT is interesting:

Clifford Bennett, chief strategist at FxMax, was even more bearish, seeing a "real risk of a blowout" in the US current account deficit in the first half of 2005 as the falling dollar forces US consumers to spend even more on imports to maintain their standard of living.

I think it's been a standard bit of stock trivia in any Econ 101 class for years that "rising incomes tend to increase imports." The idea being that as your country gets richer, a greater proportion of income is spent on imported goods. But, I think Mr. Bennett is suggesting this relationship has flipped for the US -- as purchasing power/real incomes fall with the falling dollar, consumers will switch away from domestic spending and purchase more imports.

Late Night

Jibber jabber.

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

More love from the right

And I thought the left was shrill.

Blessed Are The White Children

And let us mourn their suffering.


Our fact-free media.

Everything's Terrorism Now

Yes, prosecute the bad guys and this guy (if guilty) is a bad guy, but here's where we're headed...

New York's use of the statute to prosecute gang-related crime has sparked disagreement among lawmakers who voted for the legislation.

A spokeswoman for state Sen. Michael Balboni, who sponsored the bill, said he does not mind that prosecutors have decided gang violence is a form of domestic terrorism and are using the statute to prosecute Morales.

"Gangs are a forum to promote terrorism," said Balboni spokeswoman Lisa Angerame. "Therefore, the anti-terrorism statue would be applicable against them, even if the original intent for this law was not exactly to prosecute them."

Others say the law is not being used as intended.

"It is not that I want to defend gangs," said state Rep. Jeffrey Dinowitz. "But it should never be justifiable to use laws with purposes other than their original intent.

After All These Years

Is it just me, or has right wing blogosphere just gone completely fucking crazy since the election?

See here, here, here, here, for examples.



The light at the end of the tunnel is just around the corner.

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - At least 28 people were killed in Baghdad overnight when insurgents blew up a house that police were raiding, flattening neighboring homes.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Blogs I Read Regularly But Don't Link To Enough

Not a complete list of course.

Off the Kuff






Unqualified Offerings

Light of Reason

Late Night

Some days, I just don't have much to say...

more thread

just 'cause i feel like it (and because the big A hasn't taken away my super powers yet)

Afternoon Thread

Chat away.



The Bush administration yesterday pledged $15 million to Asian nations hit by a tsunami that has killed more than 22,500 people, although the United Nations' humanitarian-aid chief called the donation "stingy."

Context, context...

The war on terror will take center stage at next month’s second inauguration for President Bush in Washington, D.C.


The estimated budget for the event is $30-40 million, but that will not cover security costs.

Morning Thread

Chat away.

Monday, December 27, 2004

Well, we can talk about...

Daring the wrath of the blogging Gods, but noticing that the last thread about absolutely nothing is now bulging at 500+ posts, it seems to be time for a new open thread. At least.


Another Afternoon Thread

Have fun.

Afternoon Thread

Chat away.


Let the mighty Euro soar...

Back when I started blogging one of the favorite topics of discussion on conseravative blogs was the inevitable crash of the euro in favor of the mighty dollar. Most of this had nothing to do with any thought about economics but instead a general association between perceived penis size of your country and the value of its currency (American big and mighty! Europe flaccid and wimpy!), so it was all very amusing.

Not a lot of talk along those lines recently.

Free Market Follies

I do agree with Kevin Drum that there is an under-remarked upon irony that one of the biggest believers in faith-based free markets thinks that US capital markets, which for a variety of reasons should be the ultimate expression of the joys of free markets, seriously misallocate capital in a way which demands masssive government intervention.

That's one big slippery slope to take a flying leap down.

LOTR Blogging

Watched the ROTK (thanks to a generous reader) special edition this weekend. Unlike the first two, for which I thought the extended version were better more complete movies, for the ROTK I thought the extra scenes, taken as a whole, made it into a worse movie. That's not to say all extra scenes were bad, or that they weren't fun to see, but the neat thing about the first two was that the additional footage really made them into better movies. For for the ROTK, they were (mostly) just "fun extras."

It's Academic, but...

I agree with Froomkin.

More generally, I think the potential costs of any mandatory private savings plan (even as a complement to, not substitute for Social Security) outweigh their potential benefits as public policy. But, I think in theory a responsible Congress (in the United States of Fantasyland) would be more likely to devise a trouble-free mandatory 401Kish plan than become a trouble-free direct player in the equities market.

The War on Easter

Begins today. Discuss strategies.

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Late Night

Chat away.


Horrible. Nothing else to add. Will link to reputable and serious disaster relief efforts if any come to my attention.

Evening Thread

Tone Deaf

Josh Marshall gently suggests to Harold Ford that if he's going to be cynical, he should at least pick an issue that will win him some votes. I'll take it a step further and agree with Steve G. that jumping on the kill Social Security bandwagon won't just not help him win a Senate seat, it will also probably cause him to lose his seat in the House.

Look, this is our issue. This is one we should be confident about winning -- perhaps not the legislative battle, but the '06 election. Democrats shouldn't be running scared from this, they should be salivating at the prospect of being handed a gift on a silver platter. They just need to be a bit smart.