Obama Speaks – And Goes Back To The Fifties

Pay no attention to the flood of words from Obama tonight. Obama words are meaningless. There will be tons of excuses and blaming of George W. Bush. Obama will pretend to dislike his rich banker pals and pretend to defend “the people”.

Antoin “Tony” Rezko will listen and smile from his cell then remember the good old days with Barack and the freezing tenants.

John “Are you my daddy?” Edwards will fume in exile as he recalls Obama voting against already high interest rate caps of 30% while pretending to be a champion of the poor and middle class against banks and credit card companies (Obama’s 2nd largest donor bloc).

Big Media, as usual, will sanctify Obama’s words like holy relics.

Mary Todd Michelle Obama will primp herself in some sort of outfit and scowl at anyone who gets more attention than herself.

Airline Pilot Chesley B. Sullenberger will by his very presence remind the nation of the value of experience. When a craft is in trouble, whether it is the ship of state or an airline plane, an experienced hand at the wheel is not only desired – it is desperately needed.

TelePrompters will televise Obama’s need for coaching and crutches.

Senator Roland Burris will remind the nation of the corrupt Chicago air in which Obama thrived.

* * *

Big Media will (we write this in advance of the speech) think Obama is a “real cool Clyde”. The speech will be praised one of the best, a “home run”, “inspirational”, absolutely “astonishing”, “pitch perfect”. Big Media will say Obama is “in command”. Big Media will say Obama is [insert superlative, superlative].

The American people, those watching the show anyway, will be entertained but hardly convinced.

There are a couple of data points worth keeping in mind as we await President Obama’s address to the nation tonight – and as we digest an aide’s claim today, as Jake Tapper reports, that his strong approval rating is “earned.” One, while his rating is high, it’s also dead average for a new president. The other is the impressive partisanship beneath it.

We have approval ratings for each of the last nine elected presidents after their first month in office, back to Dwight Eisenhower. (We’re leaving Johnson and Ford aside.) There’s been a healthy range, from a low of 55 percent for George W. Bush after the disputed election of 2000 to a high of 76 percent for his father 12 years earlier. (I’m using ABC/Post polls since Reagan, Gallup previously).

But the average? Sixty-seven percent. And Obama’s? Sixty-eight percent, as we reported in our new poll yesterday. His initial rating, then, is strong – but it’s also generally typical for a new guy.

All the Big Media hype, all the magazine covers, all the hoop-te-do and the results are merely average. As reality bites, Republicans and Democrats will return to their partisan corners on the boxing stage and independents will cast the deciding votes.

An increasing factor, though, is partisanship. [snip]

Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush were the last two presidents of the less-partisan era. Reagan started with 89 percent approval among Republicans, 71 percent among independents and 56 percent among Democrats. Bush’s first-month approval ratings from these groups were 90, 74 and 64 percent, respectively. Those are 18- and 33-point gaps for Reagan, 16- and 26-point gaps for Bush.

That changed with Bill Clinton: He started with 86 percent approval from Democrats, but just 59 percent from independents and 40 percent from Republicans – gaps of 27 and 46 points, respectively. Then George W. Bush – 86 percent in his party, but dropping to 54 percent among independents (-32 points) and 37 percent among Democrats, 49 points lower than in his political base.

And now there’s Obama, who’s made reaching across party lines a point of principle in his presidency, with little to show for it so far. After a month in the hot seat, 90 percent of Democrats approve of his work, dropping to 67 percent of independents and 37 percent of Republicans.

Gallup, does not show Obama is the future either. In fact, Gallup has Obama going back to the doowop age: the Fifties.

For the first time since Gallup began tracking Barack Obama’s presidential job approval rating on Jan. 21, fewer than 60% of Americans approve of the job he is doing as president. In Feb. 21-23 polling, 59% of Americans give Obama a positive review, while 25% say they disapprove, and 16% have no opinion.

To date, Obama has averaged 64% approval, but, as the graph shows, there has been a slight but perceptible decline in his approval rating since he took office. This decline has largely occurred among Republicans.

The drop below 60% approval within the past week — from 63% in Feb. 18-20 polling to 59% in Feb. 21-23 polling — has mostly come among independents. Late last week, 62% of independents approved of Obama, compared with 54% in the last three days. His approval rating among Democrats has dipped slightly (but not to a statistically significant degree), while approval among Republicans has not changed.

Republicans already can’t stand him, independents are getting on the life rafts. Soon the grassroots Democrats will wake up to what Dimocrat Obama is really like. Obama better enjoy the fifties, it’s way cooler than the 20s.

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166 thoughts on “Obama Speaks – And Goes Back To The Fifties

  1. So far you are not missing anything. It’s a rah rah speech on how great his economic plan is, how we will recover and how the deficit was “inheirited”

  2. Nancy Peelosi looks postivily organismic looking and clapping for BO. She’s going to have to have a lift after all that beating, not just clapping her hands together.

  3. The Obama-Reid-Pelosi Spendathon
    How are we going to pay for it?

    Dramatically higher taxes.

    By Grover G. Norquist

    Tonight Pres. Barack Obama will deliver his first message to Congress. Obama will likely point out that the state of the union is grave, although he is less likely to admit that he, Nancy Pelosi, and Harry Reid already have done much to add to the gravity of the problem, or that their future plans will make things even worse.

    Total government taxes — federal, state, and local — were 29.2 percent of GDP in 2007, the last year for which the Office of Management and Budget has data. That’s a $4 trillion boat anchor on the U.S. economy — more than $13,000 for every man, woman, and child in America. That’s $13,000 you can’t save for your child’s college education; that you can’t put into a 401(k) for your retirement; or that you don’t have to meet payroll this month in your struggling small business.

    But if things are bad now, they’re only getting worse. Thanks to the Bush-Obama-Pelosi-Reid “stimulus/bailout/pork/omnibus” bills, federal spending alone this year will be about 30 percent of GDP, according to Strategas LLP. That’s the highest level since 1945, when World War II was drawing to a close. Since then, the average has been only 20 percent of GDP, a figure that held up as recently as two years ago. Yes, since 2007, the federal government has managed to increase spending by 50 percent. And eventually, if spending is not curtailed, there will be pressure from the mainstream media and Democrats to raise taxes to “address the deficit” caused by all this new government spending.

    Taxpayers, of course, are accustomed to hearing from official Washington how taxes may have to go up in the distant future to pay for the unfunded obligations of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. This is a looming threat, and it makes the above numbers all the more ominous. The bailout and stimulus-spending bills will have to be “paid for” in the minds of the media and the Obama-Pelosi-Reid regime with higher taxes.

    Frighteningly, a multi-trillion-dollar tax hike is already baked into the cake. On Jan. 1, 2011, just a shade over 22 months from now, several rates are scheduled to rise: The tax rate on most small-business profits will elevate from 37.9 percent to 42.5 percent. Also increasing will be the nest-egg taxes on capital gains (15 to 20 percent) and dividends (15 to 39.6 percent). And the death tax, which is set to die in a mere ten months, will come roaring back at a 55 percent rate on estates valued over $1 million. And if we take Obama at his word during the presidential campaign, there will be an increase in the Social Security payroll tax for employees and small-business owners making $250,000 or more. This tax could go as high as 12.4 percent, up from 0 percent today. Obama also has indicated his support for a cap-and-trade (or carbon-tax) regime that will increase energy costs by hundreds of dollars a year for the typical family.

    Then there are the congressional highway-bill writers who are beginning to whisper about a gasoline-tax hike. And House Ways and Means chairman Charlie Rangel (D., N.Y.) wants to “close loopholes” — i.e. “raise taxes” — on international income earned by U.S. corporations.
    President Obama has stated that those making more than $250,000 a year ($200,000 if you’re single) should expect to see their taxes go up. Yet if history is any guide, we will all see a tax hike at the end of the day. Back in 1993, Pres. Bill Clinton promised to raise taxes only on top income earners, but he ended up raising the taxes of every American, beginning with all those who drive a car. This Congress already has raised taxes on cigarette smokers, who have a median income of less than $40,000 per year.

    Put all this together and 2011 could be the most dismal year for U.S. taxpayers since Jimmy Carter was in office. The small-business tax rate under a worst-case scenario could exceed 50 percent. And while the stock market already (or hopefully) has anticipated tax hikes on capital gains and dividends, Congress and the president will no doubt search for even more tax hikes to pay for all their new spending, and not just on the “rich.”

    Here’s but one new bottom line: The Obama-Reid-Pelosi “stimulus” package involves some $1 trillion in new spending and debt. If Democrats and the mainstream media get their way and “pay for” this with a tax hike, the cost will be more than $3,000 for every single American.

    What’s to be done? Well, the good news is that while Obama, Reid, and Pelosi are working to make America poorer, less competitive, and less innovative, every single Republican in the House and almost every Republican in the Senate voted “no” on the so-called stimulus package. And the Republicans offered a pro-growth, tax-reduction alternative. So when the Obama-Reid-Pelosi spending plan makes things worse rather than better — as the stock market predicts — the American people will have the clear choice of a different path. In the summer of 2008, President Bush and Republican and Democrat leaders all drank the Kool-Aid, and claimed that throwing money at Wall Street would help the economy. But now it’s the Republicans who oppose this strategy while the Democrats embrace it. There is an alternative.

    article.nationalreview.com/?q=MjQ3NzM5NTk4ZTI2OThkYTI4MWVlZTU0ZDg0NjBlOTI=

  4. They will hold banks responsible…great, but where is the money going to come from to bail them out.

    O is saying these easy populist things, but where is the detail on how all the spending will be paid back

  5. He “wont spend a dime” to help banker but evidently he doesn’t have any concerns about spending many dimes to help those that got him elected such as ACORN

  6. Hillary made an entrance and she received a louder and more r
    ousing chorus of genuine and spontaneous applause,generated
    bt repect and adoration.Obama received the usual,expected and manditory long drawn out show of marching orders.The rest is canned BS.
    Hillary,we may looking at the Moon but we’ll be seeing you.

    BY ABM90

  7. It’s difficult watching TelePrompter head going sideways, back and forth, back and forth. It’s a very “me” centered speech thus far, and rather lackluster.

  8. Bloody Maureen down bitch has gone off her head about something Bill Clinton said. What the hell is her bloody problem. Bill Clinton is out of the scene anyway. She f***ing relishes any opportunity to attack the Clintons. Look at her past columns – has always attacked clintons. She is an idiot anyway. Unsubstantial, substandard poor work she turns in as columns.

  9. Obama is screaming about health care reform.

    DrudgeReport is mocking Mary Todd as “Michelle Fashion Rocks The Dome: Sleeveless in February”.

  10. I have been in that chamber, and I’ll tell you now…it is amazingly empty for a presidential joint session address.

    Eric Holder is the only one with a note from the prez to be absent and Ted has a doctor’s note.

    So where is everyone else?

  11. “Michelle Fashion Rocks The Dome: Sleeveless in February”.

    My thoughts exactly… “what is SHE thinkin’?” This is an evening soirée?

  12. If MEchelle is wearing sleeveless in the dead of winter, I can hardly wait to see what she’ll turn up in next summer.

  13. Republicans are applauding wildly when Obama says not to pass debt onto our children. Now Dems are applauding wildly when Obama says the debt we inherited. Celestial choirs are crying.

  14. Republicans are openly mocking Obama when he says his stimulus scam had “no earmarks”. Obama upset. Where are the celestial choirs?

  15. Ok, I have had enough. I’m bored. He is just putting new t-shirts on ideas that have been thru the wringer-washer.

    Plus he is lecturing me, again. And he is doing that awe-shucks-aren’t I cute head tilt. Barf.

    I’m going to go write a love letter…it’ll be a lot more fun than this, even if I do have to delete it right afterwards.

  16. Admin-

    Your assessment of Obama’s speech is ‘dead on balls’ accurate, accurate to the letter.

    He snuck in the “Clean Coal” initiative where the legislation was drafted in 07′ and ready to go. Millions to an Illinois Coal Company. A total waste of money. Instead of investing it in bio-fuels.

  17. I’ll bet Hillary is dead dog tired after her recent successful trip as Sec of State. I imagine she is getting sick of having to jump up and down so often. Let the big green toad jump as high as she wants everytime BO says boo…bu,t good Lord, let the others rest especially, Hillary. She’s worked hard unlike others.

  18. Hillary looks great and is in a total red outfit. Mary Todd must be angry Hillary is in red and in a front row seat.

    Obama is paying tribute to certain guests – the drawback is that Obama is even further diminished by his own lack of meaningful accomplishments for anyone but himself.

  19. The only comment I have for this long list of pure unadulterated
    ways to squander money we no longer have for the this power hungry egomaniac is this.

    ” An Overdose of Political Viagra ” with the label of
    ” A stimulus Package ”

    BY ABM90 Add it all up and weep folks we have been Had

  20. Obama still didn’t say anything meaningful tonight, except as Gregory just said, “a change of tone!”

    NADA! NOTHING! ZILCH! ZERO!

  21. hillary looks fabulous in that outfit…and obama is full of it liar liar pants on fire….im gonna watch jindal.criticize him .lol..

  22. Geithner, the Treasury Secretary, looked like a scared bunny rabbit. Scared someone would ask him a question providing details about the economy.

  23. Brian Williams and David Gregory singing the LA-LA-LA-LA song… with nothing of substance to sink their teeth into and expand upon. Talking about autographs? Oops, Emanuel jumps in to fill the void..

    night, night, all…

  24. mrs smith..lol..especially when ya got the The real president setting next to ya..or ask him about his back taxes….he better be scared..Geithner, the Treasury Secretary, looked like a scared bunny rabbit. Scared someone would ask him a question providing details about the economy.

  25. I almost puked when Jesse Jackson Jr. kissed her when she entered the house. I was also hoping to see her snub race baiter Clybourn.

  26. Jindal is not ready for prime-time. It is hard to understand him. He misses some words (is it the transmission?). Get the hook.

  27. Actually, Confloyd, I thought he sorta snubbed Hillary like he did back in the campaign at the State of the Union speech.

  28. Great to see Justice Ginsberg with Hillary ….Almost as many people sort to shake her hand/get her autograph but she had to move quickly for Mess-iah to enter. Notice how BO is required every speech to tell us how great MO is….I thought she received polite, but not overwhelming applause.

  29. A sriking scenario after the speech that was the first time in my memory when the audience left the chamber before the
    president and he was left alone with a handful of autograph hounds and democratic idolaters and empty seats. Truly a taste of what is next to come as the voters remorse progresses.

    By ABM90 To think we have Hillary,is a pleasant feeling.

  30. Good for Jindal that he admits Republicans did not live up to their principles. His presentation was horrible however. Here is the Jindal speech:

    Good evening. I’m Bobby Jindal, Governor of Louisiana.

    Tonight, we witnessed a great moment in the history of our Republic. In the very chamber where Congress once voted to abolish slavery, our first African-American President stepped forward to address the state of our union. With his speech tonight, the President completed a redemptive journey that took our nation from Independence Hall … to Gettysburg … to the lunch counter … and now, finally, the Oval Office.

    Regardless of party, all Americans are moved by the President’s personal story – the son of an American mother and a Kenyan father, who grew up to become leader of the free world. Like the President’s father, my parents came to this country from a distant land. When they arrived in Baton Rouge, my mother was already 4 ½ months pregnant. I was what folks in the insurance industry now call a ‘pre-existing condition.’ To find work, my dad picked up the yellow pages and started calling local businesses. Even after landing a job, he could still not afford to pay for my delivery – so he worked out an installment plan with the doctor. Fortunately for me, he never missed a payment.

    As I grew up, my mom and dad taught me the values that attracted them to this country – and they instilled in me an immigrant’s wonder at the greatness of America. As a child, I remember going to the grocery store with my dad. Growing up in India, he had seen extreme poverty. And as we walked through the aisles, looking at the endless variety on the shelves, he would tell me: ‘Bobby, Americans can do anything.’ I still believe that to this day. Americans can do
    anything. When we pull together, there is no challenge we cannot overcome.

    As the President made clear this evening, we are now in a time of challenge. Many of you listening tonight have lost jobs. Others have seen your college and retirement savings dwindle. Many of you are worried about losing your health care and your homes. And you are looking to your elected leaders in Washington for solutions.

    Republicans are ready to work with the new President to provide those solutions. Here in my state of Louisiana, we don’t care what party you belong to if you have good ideas to make life better for our people. We need more of that attitude from both Democrats and Republicans in our nation’s capital. All of us want our economy to recover and our nation to prosper. So where we agree, Republicans must be the President’s strongest partners. And where we disagree,
    Republicans have a responsibility to be candid and offer better ideas for a path forward.

    Today in Washington, some are promising that government will rescue us from the economic storms raging all around us.

    Those of us who lived through Hurricane Katrina, we have our doubts.

    Let me tell you a story.

    During Katrina, I visited Sheriff Harry Lee, a Democrat and a good friend of mine. When I walked into his makeshift office I’d never seen him so angry. He was yelling into the phone: ‘Well, I’m the Sheriff and if you don’t like it you can come and arrest me!’ I asked him: ‘Sheriff, what’s got you so mad?’ He told me that he had put out a call for volunteers to come with their boats to rescue people who were trapped on their rooftops by the floodwaters. The boats were all lined up ready to go – when some bureaucrat showed up and told them they couldn’t go out on the water unless they had proof of insurance and registration. I told him, ‘Sheriff, that’s ridiculous.’ And before I knew it, he was yelling into the phone: ‘Congressman Jindal is here, and he says you can come and arrest him too!’ Harry just told the boaters to ignore the bureaucrats and start rescuing people.

    There is a lesson in this experience: The strength of America is not found in our government. It is found in the compassionate hearts and enterprising spirit of our citizens. We are grateful for the support we have received from across the nation for the ongoing recovery efforts. This spirit got Louisiana through the hurricanes – and this spirit will get our nation through the storms we face today.

    To solve our current problems, Washington must lead. But the way to lead is not to raise taxes and put more money and power in hands of Washington politicians. The way to lead is by empowering you – the American people. Because we believe that Americans can do anything.

    That is why Republicans put forward plans to create jobs by lowering income tax rates for working families … cutting taxes for small businesses … strengthening incentives for businesses to invest in new equipment and hire new workers … and stabilizing home values by creating a new tax credit for home-buyers. These plans would cost less and create more jobs.

    But Democratic leaders in Congress rejected this approach. Instead of trusting us to make wise decisions with our own money, they passed the largest government spending bill in history – with a price tag of more than $1 trillion with interest. While some of the projects in the bill make sense, their legislation is larded with wasteful spending. It includes $300 million to buy new cars for the government, $8 billion for high-speed rail projects, such as a ‘magnetic levitation’
    line from Las Vegas to Disneyland, and $140 million for something called ‘volcano monitoring.’ Instead of monitoring volcanoes, what Congress should be monitoring is the eruption of spending in Washington, DC.

    Democratic leaders say their legislation will grow the economy. What it will do is grow the government, increase our taxes down the line, and saddle future generations with debt. Who among us would ask our children for a loan, so we could spend money we do not have, on things we do not need? That is precisely what the Democrats in Congress just did. It’s irresponsible. And it’s no way to strengthen our economy, create jobs, or build a prosperous future for our children.

    In Louisiana, we took a different approach. Since I became governor, we cut more than 250 earmarks from our state budget. And to create jobs for our citizens, we cut taxes six times – including the largest income tax cut in the history of our state. We passed those tax cuts with bipartisan majorities. Republicans and Democrats put aside their differences, and worked together to make sure our people could keep more of what they earn. If it can be done in Baton Rouge, surely
    it can be done in Washington, DC.

    To strengthen our economy, we need urgent action to keep energy prices down. All of us remember what it felt like to pay $4 at the pump – and unless we act now, those prices will return. To stop that from happening, we need to increase conservation … increase energy efficiency … increase the use of alternative and renewable fuels … increase our use of nuclear power – and increase drilling for oil and gas here at home. We believe that Americans can do anything – and if
    we unleash the innovative spirit of our citizens, we can achieve energy independence.

    To strengthen our economy, we also need to address the crisis in health care. Republicans believe in a simple principle: No American should have to worry about losing their health coverage – period. We stand for universal access to affordable health care coverage. We oppose universal government-run health care. Health care decisions should be made by doctors and patients – not by government bureaucrats. We believe Americans can do anything – and if we put aside partisan politics and work together, we can make our system of private medicine affordable and accessible for every one of our citizens.

    To strengthen our economy, we also need to make sure every child in America gets the best possible education. After Katrina, we reinvented the New Orleans school system – opening dozens of new charter schools, and creating a new scholarship program that is giving parents the chance to send their children to private or parochial schools of their choice. We believe that, with the proper education, the children of America can do anything. And it should not take a devastating storm to bring this kind of innovation to education in our country.

    To strengthen our economy, we must promote confidence in America by ensuring ours is the most ethical and transparent system in the world. In my home state, there used to be saying: At any given time, half of Louisiana is under water – and the other half is under indictment. No one says that anymore. Last year, we passed some of the strongest ethics laws in the nation – and today, Louisiana has turned her back on the corruption of the past. We need to bring transparency to Washington, DC – so we can rid our Capitol of corruption … and ensure we never see the passage of another trillion dollar spending bill that Congress has not even read and the American people haven’t even seen.

    As we take these steps, we must remember for all our troubles at home, dangerous enemies still seek our destruction. Now is no time to dismantle the defenses that have protected this country for hundreds of years, or make deep cuts in funding for our troops. America’s fighting men and women can do anything. And if we give them the resources they need, they will stay on the offensive … defeat our enemies … and protect us from harm.

    In all these areas, Republicans want to work with President Obama. We appreciate his message of hope – but sometimes it seems we look for hope in different places. Democratic leaders in Washington place their hope in the federal government. We place our hope in you – the American people. In the end, it comes down to an honest and fundamental disagreement about the proper role of government. We oppose the National Democrats’ view that says — the way to strengthen
    our country is to increase dependence on government. We believe the way to strengthen our country is to restrain spending in Washington, and empower individuals and small businesses to grow our economy and create jobs.

    In recent years, these distinctions in philosophy became less clear – because our party got away from its principles. You elected Republicans to champion limited government, fiscal discipline, and personal responsibility. Instead, Republicans went along with earmarks and big government spending in Washington. Republicans lost your trust – and rightly so.

    Tonight, on behalf of our leaders in Congress and my fellow Republican governors, I say: Our party is determined to regain your trust. We will do so by standing up for the principles that we share … the principles you elected us to fight for … the principles that built this into the greatest, most prosperous country on earth.

    A few weeks ago, the President warned that our nation is facing a crisis that he said ‘we may not be able to reverse.’ Our troubles are real, to be sure. But don’t let anyone tell you that we cannot recover – or that America’s best days are behind her. This is the nation that cast off the scourge of slavery … overcame the Great Depression … prevailed in two World Wars … won the struggle for civil rights … defeated the Soviet menace … and responded with determined
    courage to the attacks of September 11, 2001. The American spirit has triumphed over almost every form of adversity known to man – and
    the American spirit will triumph again.

    We can have confidence in our future – because, amid today’s challenges, we also count many blessings: We have the most innovative citizens …the most abundant resources … the most resilient economy … the most powerful military … and the freest political system in the history of the world. My fellow citizens, never forget: We are Americans. And like my dad said years ago, Americans can do anything.

    Thank you for listening. God bless you. And God bless America.”

  31. Southern Born, I guess he can’t look to greatful towards Hillary for keeping the country together while he flies around in his new jet and helicopter or people would start thinking she was the “Shadow President”.

  32. Confloyd, BO flits around aright in his “cool ride”. The very best we can hope for is that Hillary truly is “the Shadow President”.

  33. Jindal was as awful …if this is the rising star, don’t expect much opposition in four (4) yrs. I think the guy from Minn. is far more articulate and camera friendly.
    Also, where is the credit given to Bill Clinton, who pleaded with Obama to show some optimism and cut all the doomsday rhetoric….Obama, despite of himself, will get a few things done with Hillary and Bill teaching him along the way.

  34. I did not watch the speech myself. When he lied to us about NAFTA I lost interest. But I am curious how this dud of a speech will play to two audiences. More specifically:

    1. Did Bambi convince China that he will cut the deficit in half by 2012?

    2. Did Bambi convince the stock market that he is not a tax and spend liberal?

    What jackasses like Williams and Gregory say about it is incompetent, irrelevant and immaterial. Monied interests will decide his fate.

  35. One more last comment about tonights washington love and hate fest.
    Add up all the cures that Dr.No Obama has for all of our problems and I get a reminder of our future in his hands.

    “Load The Wagon and Do’nt worry about we MULES ”

    BY ABM90.Nite All

  36. I was a little disappointed with Jindel’s presentation. The content was good but he was a little distracting.

    As opposed to obama who came across as a cross between nothing and more than nothing.

  37. credit to all of you that could stay with that whole thing…I have not been able to stand his voice and that sticcato and swaying tennis head from day one…every commercial I would pop in and it was the same…same old…same old…
    ***********************

    now to the very superficial…MO needs a stylist and some clues to protocol fast…remember that church service right after the election…all the women were in smart, tailored suits and dresses in church and MO walks in with something she pulled off the sofa…that loud, short sleeved floral dress in cold January ? …

    tonight she is the First lady at an event where the President addresses the Congress and the nation…and she shows up in a sleeveless, purple dress in freezing February Washington, DC weather…arms flapping away…

    What is wrong with this woman? sleeves, at the very least, or a tailored jacket are a no brainer…does she actually think the nation wants to look at her bulky arms…geesh…cover up, girl…

  38. I do not see Jinadal as a presidential material either.

    2008 was a referendum on the Bush performance.

    Likewise, 2012 will be a refendum on the Mr Obamas performance vs the economic conditions we face as a country.

    In due course, the questions raised above will be asked and answered.

  39. The Numbers
    A Run at the Latest Data from ABC’s Poobah of Polling, Gary Langer

    Gary Langer is director of polling at ABC News, where he’s covered the beat of public opinion for nearly 20 years – conducting and analyzing ABC News polls, evaluating data from other sources and setting the news division’s standards for poll reporting. Langer is a two-time Emmy award winner, both for ABC’s reporting of public opinion polls in Iraq.
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    Strong. But Average. And Way Divided.
    February 24, 2009 2:07 PM

    There are a couple of data points worth keeping in mind as we await President Obama’s address to the nation tonight – and as we digest an aide’s claim today, as Jake Tapper reports, that his strong approval rating is “earned.” One, while his rating is high, it’s also dead average for a new president. The other is the impressive partisanship beneath it.

    We have approval ratings for each of the last nine elected presidents after their first month in office, back to Dwight Eisenhower. (We’re leaving Johnson and Ford aside.) There’s been a healthy range, from a low of 55 percent for George W. Bush after the disputed election of 2000 to a high of 76 percent for his father 12 years earlier. (I’m using ABC/Post polls since Reagan, Gallup previously).

    But the average? Sixty-seven percent. And Obama’s? Sixty-eight percent, as we reported in our new poll yesterday. His initial rating, then, is strong – but it’s also generally typical for a new guy.

    An increasing factor, though, is partisanship. I’ve previously described a steadily rising correlation between political party allegiance and ideology over the past generation. It shows up in presidential approval, too. The gap between a president’s rating in his own party vs. the out party has been markedly wider for the last three officeholders compared with their six elected predecessors.

    Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush were the last two presidents of the less-partisan era. Reagan started with 89 percent approval among Republicans, 71 percent among independents and 56 percent among Democrats. Bush’s first-month approval ratings from these groups were 90, 74 and 64 percent, respectively. Those are 18- and 33-point gaps for Reagan, 16- and 26-point gaps for Bush.

    That changed with Bill Clinton: He started with 86 percent approval from Democrats, but just 59 percent from independents and 40 percent from Republicans – gaps of 27 and 46 points, respectively. Then George W. Bush – 86 percent in his party, but dropping to 54 percent among independents (-32 points) and 37 percent among Democrats, 49 points lower than in his political base.

    And now there’s Obama, who’s made reaching across party lines a point of principle in his presidency, with little to show for it so far. After a month in the hot seat, 90 percent of Democrats approve of his work, dropping to 67 percent of independents and 37 percent of Republicans. The 53-point difference between Democrats and Republicans in assessing Obama is numerically the biggest in data back to Eisenhower, albeit within sampling tolerances of the gap for George W. Bush.

    There are substantive reasons for these differences; Obama’s staked his economic program on a massive infusion of federal dollars, and Republicans are pretty much constitutionally skeptical of the government’s ability to spend money wisely or well, at least on social programs. They’re also especially concerned about the ballooning deficit.

    This doesn’t mean there’s no potential upside in Obama’s at least trying to reach across the aisle. Two-thirds of Americans say they’d rather see politicians try to cooperate across party lines, even if that means compromising on important issues. (But likely not if it means compromising on core values, as the message massager John Russonello aptly points out.) And Obama, in our poll, gets credit for seeking compromise in a way the Republicans in Congress don’t. That’s likely helping him among independents, at least as compared with George W. Bush, as the table below shows.

    Nonetheless, the bottom line is the same as I suggested shortly after Inauguration Day. Reaching for bipartisanship is all well and good. Actually achieving it, given the sharp and substantive divisions that undergird partisan sentiments, is another issue entirely.

    Approval in February of 1st term: In-out In party All Dem Rep Ind party vs. ind.Obama 68 90 37 67 53 23Bush 55 37 86 54 49 32Clinton 63 86 40 59 46 27Bush 76 64 90 74 26 16Reagan 68 56 89 71 33 18Carter 71 79 58 69 21 10Nixon 60
    52 76 57 24 19Kennedy 72 86 49 69 37 17Eisenhower 68 61 84 66 23 18ABC/Post polls since Reagan, Gallup previouslyFebruary 24, 2009 | Permalink | User Comments (454)

  40. Approval in February of 1st term:
    T D R I
    Obama 68 90 37 67 53 23

    Bush 55 37 86 54 49 32

    Clinton 63 86 40 59 46 27

    Bush 76 64 90 74 26 16

    Reagan 68 56 89 71 33 18

    Carter 71 79 58 69 21 10

    Nixon 60 52 76 57 24 19

    Kennedy 72 86 49 69 37 17

    Eisenhower 68 61 84 66 23 18

    ABC/Post polls since Reagan

    Conclusion: so despite all the hype and the unwillingness of big media to call him on his mistakes he is just average when anyone else would be soaring.

    PS. The real figure is not 68 but 59 per Gallup.

    If I were his handler I would be worried about the difficult policy choices that lie ahead. So far he has promised all things to all people. He will get pressure from China and Wall Street to act and he will make the middle class howl. Once that happens he will be a lame duck. If the Republicans are smart they will let him go it alone. Like I say, he has all the votes he has from his own party to screw the middle class.

  41. The 53-point difference between Democrats and Republicans in assessing Obama is numerically the biggest in data back to Eisenhower
    ———————-
    Conclusion: he is a polarizing politician.

  42. Wow, Nancy Pelosi has actually rebuffed Obama on his SS power grab shenanigans and called his bluff on cramdown. I don’t understand people here who think there is some sort of Obama/Pelosi cabal. Tax and spend liberal? Obama? Obama is more Bush business sector bail out than Clinton targeted social spending. I think Bill Clinton was a liberal who could make liberal ideas sound conservative, while Obama is a conservative who can make conservative ideas sound liberal. There seems to be a lot of disconnect here about who Obama is and who is on his team, but I suggest anything Grover Norquist is writing about Obama would be much worse if he were writing about Hillary, who would have been a far more effective liberal Democrat.

  43. # wbboei Says:
    February 25th, 2009 at 12:26 am

    The 53-point difference between Democrats and Republicans in assessing Obama is numerically the biggest in data back to Eisenhower
    ———————-
    Conclusion: he is a polarizing politician.

    Or…or the country is pretty polarized, particularly as the Republican Party has shrunk and become more of a regional than national Party. He’s polarizing? Well, i only wish he were polarizing like Bill Clinton was. If we were enacting good Great Society legislation I could give a flying fig if the Republicans like him.

  44. hi, mj,

    Nice to see you back.

    Bill Clinton used liberal means to solve conservative problems. He stopped the welfare generations by giving the recipients MORE — childcare, education, etc — so they could get jobs and get off welfare; and it worked.

    There were other things that worked out the same way: “Using our tools to fix their car” and vice versa.

    That’s what ‘triangulation’ orignally meant: finding solutions so good that both sides could accept them.

  45. Hillary looked so great. Part of it was her body language–the way she carried herself and held her head, as well as, her clothes and hair.

    Mary Todd and Pelosi were pathetic and clownish. I was afraid MO was going do a stripper number and Pelosi looked like she had been to a thrift store. I wonder if her seat had a bad spring in it, or was it her?

  46. mj: I was trying to play this back at the press. They always attacked Hillary and Bill on the theory that they are polarizing so I decided to give them some of their own medicine.

    The current state of the Republican party is a separate issue. They are an amalgam of three (3) incompatible elements. Their party platform is too exclusionary. And they tolerated Bush.

    But they are important as a check and balance on the Napoleonic tendencies of the other party. Therein lies their value.

    One inevitable effects of globalism is the demise of the nation state and societies are thus compelled to reorganize around regions and local economic units. I do not necessarily foresee a United States 100 years from now.

  47. That’s what ‘triangulation’ orignally meant: finding solutions so good that both sides could accept them.
    —————————
    That is how I understood it. It was a compromise as opposed to a steamroller. The pork ridden non stimulus bill–now that was a steamroller. And the ones who got rolled were us and our children.

  48. wbboei Says:
    February 25th, 2009 at 1:41 am

    That’s what ‘triangulation’ orignally meant: finding solutions so good that both sides could accept them.
    —————————
    That is how I understood it. It was a compromise as opposed to a steamroller.

    ============

    Not if ‘compromise’ suggests a ‘split the difference’, wishy washy thing. This is one thing Huckabee had right. Instead of splitting the difference ‘horizontallly’ he wanted a ‘vertical’ solution: a solution that was really better than what either side of the horizontal pole were proposing.

    When Clintn and Blair did it, it was called ‘third way.’

  49. Not if ‘compromise’ suggests a ’split the difference’, wishy washy thing. This is one thing Huckabee had right. Instead of splitting the difference ‘horizontallly’ he wanted a ‘vertical’ solution: a solution that was really better than what either side of the horizontal pole were proposing.
    =========================
    Turndown: thanks. When it is defined that way, it is hard to understand how anyone could argue against it unless they believe in my way or the highway, or do not agree that the vertical solution is better than the one they proposed.

  50. Here’s more on the original meaning of ‘triangulation.’

    Hello spamtrap my old friend.

    http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&rlz=1C1GGLS_en-USUS299US303&q=site:1950democrat.livejournal.com+trianbulation&btnG=Search

    1950democrat: Triangulation? Bill Clinton’s ‘Third Way’? Clintonism?
    Currently the word ‘triangulation’, at least from enemies of the Clintons, seems to mean meeting the other party half way, splitting the difference on …
    1950democrat.livejournal.com/18386.html – 21k – Cached – Similarpages

    1950democrat: David Brooks praising Hillary’s 2002 vote …
    David Brooks praising Hillary’s 2002 vote, triangulation, Clintonian http://www.hillaryclinton.com/news/article/view/?id=1336
    1950democrat.livejournal.com/49761.html – 19k –

  51. wbboei said:
    Instead of splitting the difference ‘horizontallly’ he wanted a ‘vertical’ solution: a solution that was really better than what either side of the horizontal pole were proposing.
    =========================
    Turndown: thanks. When it is defined that way, it is hard to understand how anyone could argue against it unless they believe in my way or the highway, or do not agree that the vertical solution is better than the one they proposed.

    ================

    Maybe that’s why the Clinton-haters changed the meaning of the word ‘triangulation’ to ‘wishy washy compromise.’

  52. TurnDownObama, FYI we linked to 1950s Democrat’s livejournal entry in our article (regarding Obama and his “no” vote on credit card interest rate caps).

  53. After a short and restless night of echoes of the Obama cure for all that is wrong in our lives,I must expound a few thoughts on
    the livestock show as he rambled on and on.
    First he is a con artist no other president before him with a broad brush and a palette of red paint a talent for reading and no ideas.His desire to be a rembrandt turned into an warhol and a campbell soup can.Perhaps that is why Heinz posted an 11% gain in profits yesterday no doubt yhe soup division is working overtime big time.Our cave dwelling rock carvers etched their food chain on the walls of their mortgage free homes and the freedom from the plague of not yet created greedy politicians that we now endure.Obama preaches the need for belt tightening and wise spending for usas we try generic food medicines and lousey living.He lives like the emperor that he envisions himself.For him the best things in life are free.
    Did my usual light shopping at Wal-mart recently and of course got enmeshed in the tangle of carts and people trying
    stock up on soup now almost doubled in price.The soup dept shelf stockers were more busy than one armed paper hangers with an itch.
    Mr Obama you now have the power to do as you will with me but I’ll be damned if we will allow you to touch the lifeline of the elderly,our Social Security.Mail your payoff welfare checks to your worshippers and please make an early exit from our troubled existance.Had you dared to look down before you last night instead of your reading aids you would have seen our SOS
    standin ready to clean up your growing mess and restore our faith in this great country.To me you crossed your finish line
    last night.

    BY ABM90 Get Ready Get Set Hillary our country is hurting and ready to welcome you with its heart and open arms

  54. Look on VP Joe Biden’s face as he listened to his slave owner and pondered the effects of Standford and Son business dealings,is priceless.

    By ABM90

  55. I watched a documentary on the doomsday date of 12/12 in many historical/occult predictions including the Mayan, Nostradamus, the Bible and a computer generated ‘spider’ search program which has a a sky-high accuracy rate for the past decade, predicting everything from the WTC to the Tsunami.

    That’s where the country is headed if BHO isn’t controlled.

    One of the predictions is it starts with a small-scale nuclear conflict. With BHO paying for the immigration and settling of thousands of Palestinians in the US (how many of you saw that?) and Israel getting nervous about the 900 million in aid BHO is sending to Gaza, the Iranians and terrorist groups are sure to see this as an opportunity and i wouldn’t be a bit surprised to see Israel strike first.

    BTW, Jindel sounded garbled on FOX but when I switched channels the sound was fine. He said some excellent stuff.

  56. THE DAY OF RECKONING

    BHO used that phrase at least twice. ❓

    Telling Americans battered by the economic disaster that a “day of reckoning” is at hand, BHO last night called on the country to pull together.

    “Well, that day of reckoning has arrived, and the time to take charge of our future is here.”

  57. Clinton Meets Pakistani Foreign Minister on Regional Policy Review

    By David Gollust
    Washington
    25 February 2009

    Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi late Tuesday as part of the Obama administration’s policy review of the Afghan conflict and related unrest in Pakistan. Qureshi said his government is determined to defeat terrorism.

    Clinton met for more than an hour with Qureshi in the first of what will be a series of meetings this week with her Pakistani and Afghan counterparts on how to deal with burgeoning extremist violence in the two countries’ border region.

    The Obama administration has launched a far-reaching policy review on how to deal with Taliban and al-Qaida linked radicals in the troubled region, but in a sign of mounting concern it has already committed another 17,000 U.S. troops to Afghan operations.

    In brief comments to reporters after the meeting, Clinton pledged a very open and consultative review process with the two governments. Qureshi said he sees a convergence of interests with Washington on the conflict, and reiterated his government’s commitment to combat extremism. “There is a convergence of interests. There is a willingness to work together. And I see a lot of hope in the new U.S. administration, the new leadership. And Pakistan is willing to work with the American administration to fight extremism and terrorism. We are determined to defeat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations,” he said.

    Afghan Foreign Minister Rangeen Dadfar Spanta is also in Washington for the review, and met with Qureshi Tuesday before the Pakistani minister went to the State Department. The two neighbors have had tense relations and have frequently engaged in finger-pointing over blame for border violence. But Qureshi told reporters after a hotel meeting with his Afghan counterpart that there is a new environment between them and that trust and confidence has increased greatly. The Pakistani official also said his government’s controversial deal to allow Islamic law in the insurgency-ridden Swat Valley region is a local solution to a local problem and is not appeasement towards militants.

    Secretary Clinton will hold a three-way dinner meeting with the Afghan and Pakistani foreign ministers Wednesday night and meet separately with Spanta on Thursday. Richard Holbrooke, the new U.S. special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan who recently toured the region, is also taking part in the consultations.

    Pakistan’s Qureshi is also due to meet with Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry, who along with former Republican Senator Chuck Hagel will release a report Wednesday urging as much as $5 billion in U.S. and European aid to help shore up Pakistan’s government.

    The report by the Atlantic Council policy group which Hagel now heads warns that without early and massive help, Pakistan could be headed for a financial meltdown.

    voanews.com/english/2009-02-25-voa2.cfm

  58. Hillary Clinton Sounds Right Note in China
    By Bill Hare
    02/23/2009

    After the bombastic attitude of the Bush-Cheney regime highlighted by insults at the leaders of France and Germany for advocating analysis and waiting rather than swiftly launching war in Iraq over swiftly refuted rationale, what was vitally needed for the Obama administration was selecting a Secretary of State with knowledge of the world and a flair for diplomacy.

    Prior to the time that Hillary Clinton was elected to serve New York in the U.S. Senate she had been the nation’s first lady. Those tandem experiences provided Clinton with significant opportunity to meet numerous world leaders and travel far and wide.

    Hillary Clinton has embarked on a mission to reframe American objectives and present a positive image to the world, filled with diplomatic decorum with optimism while curtailing gunboat diplomacy and childishly insulting symbols as manifested by serving “Freedom Fries” on Air Force One and other comparable mischievous behavior.

    Clinton should be given high marks for her activities in Beijing beginning with the optimistic message she conveyed on behalf of joint cooperation. Clinton is well aware of the recent Chinese assistance rendered to the United States during its current economic calamities in securing bonds. Symbolically the Clinton Secretary of State stewardship took a positive step while in China that extends far beyond the borders of the United States and the world’s most populous nation. By visiting a gas-fired power plant which uses sophisticated turbines made by General Electric, Clinton was, in the spirit of the February 21 story in the New York Times headline “paint(ing) China policy with a green hue.”
    Clinton declared that “we hope you won’t make the same mistakes we made” in inviting China to join the U.S. in an ambitious effort to curb greenhouse gases. “When we were industrializing and growing, we didn’t know any better; neither did Europe,” she was quoted in the Times article. “Now we’re smart enough to figure out how to have the right kind of growth.”

    The gas-fired plant Clinton visited is deemed to be nearly twice as efficient as the coal-fired plants that supply much of China’s electricity and helped push China past the United States as the world’s leading emitter of carbon dioxide.

    The Obama administration hopes to make climate change a centerpiece of, as the Times put it, “more vigorous engagement with China.” The two day stop in Beijing at the close of a week long Asian tour represented an effort “to put her own stamp on a relationship that was dominated by the Treasury Department in the latter years of the Bush administration.” The spirit demonstrated by Clinton in conveying a view of global cooperation is an encouraging sign harkening back to more productive periods of U.S. diplomatic history as embodied by Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Harry Truman, and John F. Kennedy.

    politicalcortex.com/story/2009/2/23/163526/298

  59. JanH re article by Grover Norquist:

    In my lifetime, republican economic policy has not worked,,except for the wealthy…leading to huge deficits, greed and a shrinking middle class. As bad as O is, the republicans do not have the solutions.

    What we need is a better kind of Democrat, like Hillary Clinton, fiscally conservative and socially liberal on issues such as gender equality, healthcare, etc.

  60. Exactly, carol. Although I have come to think the phrase “fiscally conservative” is misunderstood now to mean sort of Republican, which it is not. I would say “fiscally sensible”.

  61. What this voa thing suggests is how the impending financial meltdown of Muslim countries throughout the world strengthens the hands of radical forces, and that is why Hillary is advocating financial support for Pakistan. Once again the concern is that the money we and this time the Europeans as well spend is not stolen or misappropriated to the radical forces. We have seen that happen before in Palestine, and it will happen again both there and in Pakistan unless the proper controls are in place. I expect that she will see to it that they are.

  62. I was just thinking how lucky and thankful obama should be that Hillary is SOS. She has outperformed all the dims and has the work capacity and knowledge base of 10 men/women at one time.

    I doubt he sees it that way though.

  63. JEEZZZ!

    I just skimmed over a couple of videos of BHO’s speech and the way Pooplosi jumps to her feet and applauds reminds me of a trained seal flapping its flippers.

  64. BTW,

    That homeless woman BHO ‘saved’ at last week’s Florida rally by giving her a house is a realtor!

    Another hoax! Planting props with no fear for being called on it.

    Unbelievable.

  65. I’ve actually come to appreciate Pelosi. I don’t think she’s on the koolaid anymore. I think she was the only thing standing between him and his moronic social security fix, and she called his bluff on cramdowns, and she nixed his ridiculous business tax cuts in the stimulus. If she were simply his cheerleader she would not have done any of that.

  66. MoDo ONTO SOMETHING, BUT JUST CAN’T PUT THE BLAME ON OBAMA

    Okay, Modo validates what we’ve been saying about bank bailouts, and she closes in on a bank that is suspiciously close to Ofraud. But after making all that progress documenting the flagrant abuse of our tax dollars, she comes up short and misses the lay up: she regurgitates a stock Obama line, but doesn’t hold his feet to the fire. She instead deflects blame to others.

    We’ll give her a little credit for lifting up the rocks and noticing what slimy things are under it, but we’ll ding her a few points off for not exterminating the right bugs. Overall, B-.

    Maureen, we know you can do better. If you just stop hanging around with the wrong crowd and using hopium, there just might be a path toward Redemption.

    My $$$ comments inserted here and there.

    nytimes.com/2009/02/25/opinion/25dowd.html?_r=1

    I Ponied Up for Sheryl Crow?
    ————————————–

    By MAUREEN DOWD
    Published: February 24, 2009

    Talk about being teed off.

    The economy is croaking and bankers are still partying at a golf tournament here on our dime.

    It’s a good argument for nationalization, or better yet, internationalization. Outsource the jobs of these perfidious, oblivious bank executives to Bangalore; Bollywood bashes have to cost less than Hollywood ones.

    The entertainment Web site TMZ broke the story Tuesday that Northern Trust of Chicago, which got $1.5 billion in bailout money and then laid off 450 workers, flew hundreds of clients and employees to Los Angeles last week and treated them to four days of posh hotel rooms, salmon and filet mignon dinners, music concerts, a PGA golf tournament at the Riviera Country Club with Mercedes shuttle rides and Tiffany swag bags.

    “A rep from the PGA told us Northern Trust wrote one big, fat check in order to sponsor the event,” TMZ reported.

    $$$ Okay, here’s where you bring up the tie to Obama, those nice banker people who were so friendly to the Obamas that they gave them a great loan deal, low interest rate, jumbo loan, but with very little down. NoTrust essentially admitted it was to curry favor with a US Senator…

    Northern No Trust had a lavish dinner at the Ritz Carlton on Wednesday with a concert by Chicago (at a $100,000 fee); rented a private hangar at the Santa Monica Airport on Thursday for another big dinner with a gig by Earth, Wind & Fire, and closed down the House of Blues on Sunset Strip on Saturday (at a cost of $50,000) for a dinner and serenade by Sheryl Crow.

    $$$ Okay, here’s where you bring up the Obama tie? …..

    In the ignoble tradition of rockers who sing for huge sums to sketchy people when we’re not looking, Crow — in her stint as a federal employee — warbled these lyrics to the oblivious revelers:

    “Slow down, you’re gonna crash,
    Baby, you’re a-screaming it’s a blast, blast, blast
    Look out babe, you’ve got your blinders on …
    But there’s a new cat in town
    He’s got high payin’ friends
    Thinks he’s gonna change history.”

    Northern Untrustworthy even offered junketeers the chance to attend a seminar on the credit crunch where they could no doubt learn that the U.S. government is just the latest way to finance your deals and keep your office swathed in $87,000 area rugs.

    In what is now an established idiotic ritual of rationalization, the bank put out a letter noting that it “did not seek the government’s investment” even though it took it, and that it had raised $3 million for the Los Angeles Junior Chamber of Commerce Charity Foundation and other nonprofits. They riposted that they have a contract to do it every year for five years; but this isn’t every year.

    The bank cloaks itself in a philanthropic glow while wasting our money, acting like the American Cancer Society when in fact it’s a cancer on American society.

    It asserted that it earned an operating net income of $641 million last year and acted as though it did Americans a favor by taking federal cash.

    I would ask Northern No Trust: If you’re totally solvent, why are you taking my tax dollars? If you’re not totally solvent, why are you giving my tax dollars to Sheryl Crow?

    Coming in a moment when skeptical and angry Americans watched A.I.G., Citigroup, General Motors and Chrysler — firms that had already been given a federal steroid injection — get back in line for more billions, the golf scandal was just one more sign that the bailed-out rich are different from you and me: their appetites are unquenchable and their culture is uneducable.

    $$$ Finallly, an Obama reference….

    President Obama served them notice on Tuesday night in his Congressional address, saying: “This time, C.E.O.’s won’t be able to use taxpayer money to pad their paychecks or buy fancy drapes or disappear on a private jet. Those days are over.”

    $$$ Wait, wait, you still didn’t mention the NoTrust-Nobama nexus??? Hey, are you auditioning for a job in the Obama administration?!! Now you’re making Obama out to be the Good Guy, the tough talkin’ marshall who’s gonna round up the cattle rustlers. But the marshall only talks. He never rounds up the posse. He lets the bank get robbed again. (In this case, its the bankers doing the looting, taking money from the average Joe Taxpayer.).

    But will they notice?

    John “Antique Commode” Thain had to be ordered by a judge to tell Andrew Cuomo’s investigators which Merrill Lynch employees got those $3.6 billion in bonuses that Thain illicitly shoved through as his firm was failing and being taken over by Bank of America with the help of a $45 billion bailout. Kenneth Lewis, the Bank of America C.E.O., made the absurd assertion to Congress that his bank had “no authority” to stop the bonuses, even though he knew about them beforehand.

    $$$ So far, we’re outing one bad CEO? Not the CEO of the country, who is supposedly in charge? The one with the *mandate* for change and to clean up the mess, who supposedly has all this **politically savvy** and **personal integrity** and **conviction** to take this country on a new course? A new course that he himself has claimed is of utmost importance???

    “They find out they’re $7 billion off on the estimate of losses for the fourth quarter and they never think maybe we should go back and adjust these bonuses?” Cuomo told me, as Thain was finally responding to investigators on Tuesday at the New York attorney general’s office. “He refused to answer questions on the basis that ‘the Bank of America didn’t want me to.’ You can take the Fifth Amendment or you can answer questions. But there’s no Bank of America privilege. The Bank of America doesn’t substitute for the Constitution. And who’s the Bank of America, by the way?”

    He gets incensed about how ingrained, indoctrinated and insensitive the ex-masters of the universe are. “They think of themselves as kings and queens,” he said. And they’re not ready to abdicate.

    $$$ So all these bad bankers and bad companies are bilking the taxpayer, but Ofraud deserves credit for talking tough, and he isn’t assessed blame for a) lack of oversight, b) turning a blind eye to these nudge, nudge, wink, wink arrangements.
    $$$ Obama: “I’m shocked, shocked to find out that there are shady dealings going on here”.
    $$$ NorthernThirst: “Your mortgage is approved, sir”.

  67. Clinton should be given high marks for her activities in Beijing beginning with the optimistic message she conveyed on behalf of joint cooperation.

    Clinton is well aware of the recent Chinese assistance rendered to the United States during its current economic calamities in securing bonds.

    Symbolically the Clinton Secretary of State stewardship took a positive step while in China that extends far beyond the borders of the United States and the world’s most populous nation.
    ———————————
    Jan: thanks for posting the above article. The above excerpt made me think of something.

    The most interesting story being written now is not the failure of the Republican Party, or the takeover of the US govenment by global business interests, or how a huckster from chicago a nation faced with unpredented challenges.

    The most interesting and consequential story is the one NYT and NBC refuse to tell and that is how our greatest leader namely Hillary is rebuilding our tattered reputation in the world, managing the clash of civilizations and forging a new world order which recognizes and enlists the power of China and India in the new world order.

    From what little I know of Chinese history, they have held themselves aloof from the rest of the world–the Middle Kingdom mentality. Today however that sort of isolationsim is no longer an option. The world is too small, their power is too vast . . they must engage.

    The bet they made after Mao was to push for economic power as opposed to political freedom. They backed up that proposition at Tianamen Square much to the dispair of western journalists. But if they continue to grow economically, a middle class will develop and political freedom will emerge.

    Therefore, question becomes how will China interact with the world and how will they assert themselves in a role which they may not relish but cannot realistically avoid.

    In the broadest sense Hillary has proposed a partnership with the United States on economic matters of course but also on a wide array of fronts from climate change, to combatting terrorism, etc. The bargaining agenda is rich, and when that is true, the prospects for mutual gain are abundant.

    Viewed in that light the historic value and importance of Hillarys trip cannot be overstated.

    That is the story which needs to be told and pieces of it are showing up in the strangest places–like blogs such as this, and the foreign press, especially the state run press in China. This story needs to be converted into a log and the log into a book both to give Hillary the credit she deserves and to showcase her tremendous skills and to show how it is done. A sequel to Living History. The world in her arms.

  68. I’ve actually come to appreciate Pelosi. I don’t think she’s on the koolaid anymore. I think she was the only thing standing between him and his moronic social security fix, and she called his bluff on cramdowns, and she nixed his ridiculous business tax cuts in the stimulus. If she were simply his cheerleader she would not have done any of that
    ———————————-
    mj: I hate to be the one to tell you this but Pelosi–or Poosie as she is affectionately known to her friends is controlled by a man named Felix Rohatyn. Google him if you like. He is the one who moved the party away from Roosevelt principles and delivered them into the lap of Wall Street. Simply put, Poopsie is a limosine liberal.

    That being the case, when push comes to shove she will go along with Mr Obama on cutting the lifeline of the elderly. Rohatyn would as well. Poopsie is the reincarnation of Marie Antoinette ie, let them eat cake. She belongs in a wax museum.

  69. Bank of America heiress says ‘idiots’ are running the bank
    Peter Cohan
    Feb 24th 2009 at 11:20AMText SizeAAAFiled under: Company News

    Say “banking heiress” to me and I envision a spoiled brat. But that doesn’t mean that she’s wrong when she complains about the executives who are destroying her fortune. This comes to mind while reading the comments of Virginia Hammerness, a big stockholder in Bank of America (BAC) and heiress to founder A.P. Giannini’s family fortune. She recently complained, “What idiots, what kind of idiots are running that bank?” and described the current state of the bank as “totally repulsive.”

    I feel sympathy for Hammerness because her criticisms are spot on. She pointed out that CEO Ken Lewis should pay for his decision to acquire the near-bankrupt Merill Lynch, even after learning that huge bonuses were paid out to Merill employees right after the deal was announced. Her grandfather would not have accepted such huge bonuses, she said, but would have instead put the money into helping customers.

    A.P. Giannini was famous for helping his customers after San Francisco’s 1906 earthquake. His bank had burned down so he set up a wooden plank on two barrels along the street and made loans on a handshake. Giannini later said that each of those loans was repaid. The best thing about Hammerness is that her memories of how her grandfather ran Bank of America reflect exactly the kind of banking principles to which we need to return.

    Too bad there is no way she is going to see her fortune return to where it was before Ken Lewis got his hands on it.
    Peter Cohan is president of Peter S. Cohan & Associates. He also teaches management at Babson College. His eighth book is You Can’t Order Change: Lessons from Jim McNerney’s Turnaround at Boeing. He has no financial interest in Bank of America securities.

  70. I apologize for my ignorance on this subject, but was the estate tax/inheritance/gift tax repealed under the Bush tax cuts? I from my limited vantage point find that raising taxes on those that we need to invest is a bad idea but I am all for taxing an inheritance. The same exfriend who emailed me saying Hillary is know bambi’s bitch expressed the opinion that I was far more socialist than waffles for espousing that.
    I am conflicted. So many ways to transfer wealth and why should someone who has done nothing be gifted with a life of luxury. And as the law is now a long term same sex couple gets none of the benefits, but Paris Hilton gets to live in the lap of luxury?

  71. “The most interesting and consequential story is the one NYT and NBC refuse to tell and that is how our greatest leader namely Hillary is rebuilding our tattered reputation in the world, managing the clash of civilizations and forging a new world order which recognizes and enlists the power of China and India in the new world order.”

    ——————————

    Amen wbboie!

  72. In hindsight, Modo doesn’t “miss the mark”. It’s worse. She deflects blame that should be pointed at Obama, and misdirects it somewhere / anywhere else.

    She’s trying to make him look good.

    She’s pretending the fault is with all the greedy CEO’s, but doesn’t let her readers in on the fact that it was Big Money that spent lavishly to ensure Obama would be elected, and in return for his celebrity, he’d let people in his administration run wild with power, power to grant favors for the string pullers that installed him.

    So I am taking back that B-, and giving you an F. You are a failure as a journalist. You are part of the state mouthpiece, working around the clock for Obama.

  73. she nixed his ridiculous business tax cuts in the stimulus.
    ———————
    ?

    Small business produced 100% of the new jobs last year. They are the growth engine in the economy. Tax cuts for them would help them survive and grow. To nix cuts to them, if that is what Poosie did, is hardly a good thing.

    One thing Poosie did which is really helping the economy is pass the made in America requirement. This has drawn rave reviews by trading partners across the globe–from China, to Europe, to Canada. They are talking about trade wars, as she sits there smirking.

    I am a firm believer in rebuilding the manufacturing sector, but this is not the way to do it.

  74. HOW MANY MORE BRAVE MEN/WOMEN IN OUR ARMED SERVICES WILL ASK THAT THEIR PRESIDENT SHOW HIS BIRTH CERTIFICATE???

    Hopefully most of them

    OBAMA WATCH CENTRAL
    2nd U.S. soldier in Iraq challenges eligibility
    Says issue could decide if ‘we are a Constitutional Republic’

    Posted: February 24, 2009
    8:30 pm Eastern

    By Bob Unruh
    © 2009 WorldNetDaily

    Another U.S. soldier on active duty in Iraq is joining a challenge to President Obama’s eligibility to be commander-in-chief, citing WND’s report on 1st Lt. Scott Easterling, who has agreed to be a plaintiff in a lawsuit over the issue, as his inspiration.

    “I was inspired by 1LT Easterling’s story and am writing you to inform you that I would like to be added as a plaintiff against Obama as well if you feel it would help your case,” the soldier, identified for this report only as a reservist now on active duty in Iraq.

    His letter was directed to California attorney Orly Taitz who, along with her DefendOurFreedom.us Foundation, is working on a series of legal cases seeking to uncover Obama’s birth records and other documents that would reveal whether he meets the requirements of the U.S. Constitution.

    Easterling, who confirmed separately to WND that he is questioning Obama’s authority, wrote to Taitz that, “As an active-duty officer in the United States Army, I have grave concerns about the constitutional eligibility of Barack Hussein Obama to hold the office of president of the United States.”

    (Story continues below)

    wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=89941

  75. If there is any silver lining to this it is that Grover Norquist is upset. He is a neo con and believes by his own admission that we should cut taxes to defund the left. If people who are dependent on those programs get hurt, well that is their problem in his view.

    Simply put, Norquist is symptomatic of what is wrong with the Republican Party. He is the perfect soulmate of the neo Libs in the Democratic Party. An opponent of the nation state, a proponent of open borders, a devotee of the world economic order.

  76. I’d really appreciate a reaction to my saying that I believe an inheritance tax is warrented. I understand a parent works to make a childs life better but 50% of 100 million leaves one very comfortable. Enough to command power over those that have busted thier ass working for a living while the child of a money maker lives a life of luxury.

  77. wbboei, You said to watch the stock market after Obama’s speech. I know it’s early in the day, but it’s down 153 points.

  78. Oh, and everyone I know says Jindal was awful last night. The GOP is in serious shit right now if he’s the rising star of the party.

  79. Paula
    I will again state that my comprehension of economics is limited to micro and macro in college twenty years ago. But I do remember that economics is a social science. Perception is a huge pat of the game. There really is no tangible worth to any of it. I want the best for my country for all of those who gave the max to a 401k over the lat twenty years to come out on top. He screamed disaster and drove it all down and now wants to paint a reluctant rosy picture. Fuck him. this has all been orchastrated and what is beyond sad is that most Americans hrard his eloquent speech and they want to believe. They are too busy paying their taxes and working and wanting the best of their investments to scream.

  80. henry, I agree that perception is huge. And it looks like his optimistic tone last night didn’t resonate with Wall Street because there was nothing new in his speech and not nearly enough details.

  81. Henry, Paula

    The only reason he was optimistic last night is was BC told him he should be. I did what I could for the economy last night while he was making his speech. I purchased a new car that gets 48 in the city and 46 on the highway, and got rid of our luxury gas hoag.

    So maybe O would at least do something abouthis cabon footprint.

  82. NewMex
    My hope is that the pretty manipulative speeches have run their course.
    He talks to Americans like we are children!!
    Anyone else remember his statements about plopping a child down in front of the TV?
    Or the way he talked to our mayors when he has never managed anything in his life.
    Are his kids or rather were they tended to by paid staff? I take every effort to avoid tv with the child in my care but sometimes Calliou is the greatest repite ever afforded,

  83. U.S. Embassy: Secretary of State Clinton to visit Thailand in July

    2009-02-23

    BANGKOK, Feb. 23 (Xinhua) — U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton plans to visit Thailand in July to attend the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Regional Forum (ARF) in Bangkok, Michael Turner spokesman of the U.S. Embassy in Thailand said Monday, the website of The Nation newspaper reported.

    Turner’s announcement came after a claim made by an opposition Puea Thai Party MP that Clinton avoided visiting Thailand during her recent trip to Asia due to security concerns.

    Earlier, Prompong Nopparit, Puea Thai Party spokesman said Clinton decided not to visit Thailand because she was not happy with the seizures of Bangkok’s two airports by the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) protesters late last year, and particularly with the appointment of Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya, who has been perceived as a PAD supporter.

    Speaking to Thai News Agency, Turner said Thailand was not in the Clinton’s itinerary to Asia during her recent trip and that has nothing to do with the Thai opposition party’s claims, The Nation’s website reported.

    Last week U.S. Secretary of State Clinton visited Japan, Indonesia, South Korea and China.

    news.xinhuanet.com/english/2009-02/23/content_10878379.htm

  84. Really would love to know anyone and everyone’s feelings here on inherited wealth. My personal position is 50%. No one has responded to me question?

  85. NewMexicoFan Says:

    February 25th, 2009 at 11:55 am

    ———————————————————————————-

    Did you get a Prius? My car is 13 years old, so I may need to get a different car, but I can’t make up my mind. Plus, I dread car payments.

  86. Forgive me mj. I got a little carried away with my bullshit. I wish I could agree with you on Pelosi, but I just cannot. The wrong people are pulling her strings. I have friends who knew her thirty years from the maritime unions and I am reflecting their current concerns about her as much as I am my own. That Rohatyn connection for me is like game, set and match. By the way he is also Ted’s executor.

  87. Paula- if his speech had connected then I believe the market would have continued its climb from yesterday, but based on what you are saying it has done the reverse and gone down. To me that reads “No Sale”, regardless of what the intellectual prostitutes in big media may say about it.

    Obviously, there are other forces in play that move the market, but the concerns investors have about him that he is a tax and spend guy plus the concerns China has about his political will to cut the budget were not alleviated by last nights speech, based on the reaction by the audience that counts.

  88. One moe time
    do you think inherited wealth is fair/
    \No one has responded to my question. I find that very interesting?

  89. The central problem I have with people like Mr. Obama and Pelosi is this: Each in their own separate way represent the privileged class in this society. Their game is to rob Peter to pay Paul. And for them Peter is not their constituents but the middle class. Paul is the under class. I have had this discussion with the Cuban banker friend of mine twenty times at least. From the standpoint of the wealthy, it is short sighted to destroy the middle class because they are a buffer if nothing else to the concerns which Hamilton and his Federalists friends worried about namely the tyranny of the mob. The stuff that was going on in France circa 1789 did little to quell those fears. My friend saw it first hand growing up in Cuba.

  90. I am fascinated by the fact that I mentioned that I feel inherited wealth is wrong on three pro-hillary websites and asked for a response and i got zero. Kind of funny that liberals say spend spend spend just not my kid who hasn’t worked a day yet gets the most from the country he was born into.

  91. Henry–you lived in New York. Do you remember the Fabregee family. The sions of that family surive on inherited wealth, contribute nothing of substance to the welfare of society, except to fund radical left wing causes. They operate behind the scenes.

    The granddaughter of John Paul Getty lives in Los Angeles, and media reports she has a drug problem and other issues. I do not doubt she is trying to be a productive member of society, but in a perverse way her wealth has conspired against it.

    If you read the epic novel War And Peace, you may remember the statement by Pierre Buzukov that he wanted to free the surfs to liberate the nobility–or words to that effect.

    Do I believe in inherited wealth? Take a wild guess.

  92. LOL…can I be selfish and say that if I was the one inheriting…I would be all for it???

    I’m such a “me” person…lol…

  93. wbboei
    okay get your point
    but I am tormented but what i see and read everyday
    Children’s hospitol of pittsburgh screaming that their budget from the state has been cut. Well they are part of UPMC which is the largest employer in the city of Pittsburgh and they pay no taxes. But offer a hundred million in scholarships to state schools??????? City is broke and this is a multi-billion dollar industry. Made me curious. So I looked into what is non-profit. All I can say from my little bit of research and detective work is that the number of kidney transplants for non-americans which take place at the UPMC facilities is absurd. mOST HAPPEN FROM COUNTRIES WHICH HAVE REALLY BAD WATER. tHEY HAVE SUITES WERE PEOPLE NEED AN ORGAN SIT IN LUXURY BUT AS THEY ARE HOSPITALIZED THEY ARE BUMPED UP ON WAITING LISTS111

  94. Henry- okay fine but how does that relate to inherited wealth. By the way, we probably need to define what is meant by inherited wealth. I mean fortunes. I do not believe that normal wealth should escheat to the state upon death or that gifts should be given inter vivos simply to avoid that result. I mean fortunes placed in the hands of irresponsible people by the accident of birth.

  95. Obama chooses Locke for Commerce post

    WASHINGTON (AP) — President Obama on Wednesday announced he has chosen former Washington Gov. Gary Locke as his nominee for Commerce secretary, trying a third time to fill a key Cabinet post for a country in recession.
    “I’m sure it’s not lost on anyone that we’ve tried this a couple of times. But I’m a big believer in keeping at something until you get it right. And Gary is the right man for this job,” Obama said, standing with the fellow Democrat in the Indian Treaty Room at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building near the White House.

    The president’s two top earlier choices for the post dropped out — one a Democrat facing questions about a donor and the other a Republican who had a change of heart about working for a president from the opposition party — well before the Senate had a chance to confirm them. Obama praised Locke, a Chinese-American, as a man who shares his vision for turning around the moribund economy, and as someone who is committed to doing what it takes to keep the American dream alive.
    “Gary will be a trusted voice in my Cabinet, a tireless advocate for our economic competitiveness and an influential ambassador to American industry who will help us do everything we can, especially now, to promote our industry around the globe,” Obama said. “I’m grateful he’s agreed to leave one Washington for another,” the president added.

    In turn, Locke said he was committed to making the sprawling agency an “active and integral partner” in advancing Obama’s economic agenda, as it nurtures innovation, expands global markets, protects ocean fisheries and fosters growth. “The Department of Commerce can and will help create the jobs and the economic vitality our nation needs,” Locke said.

    If confirmed by the Senate, Locke would assume control of a large agency with a broad portfolio that includes overseeing many aspects of international trade, the 2010 national head count and oceans policy. Locke, 59, was the nation’s first Chinese-American governor, serving two terms in Washington from 1997 to 2005. He currently works for the Seattle-based law firm Davis Wright Tremaine on issues involving China, energy and governmental relations.

    Obama initially tapped New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, a fellow Democrat, for the Cabinet post. He withdrew in January, before Obama took office, after the disclosure that a grand jury is investigating allegations of wrongdoing in the awarding of contracts in his state. A month later, Obama announced that Republican Sen. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire had accepted the job. But a week after that, Gregg stepped down, citing “irresolvable conflicts” with the policies of the Democratic president.

    Even after Obama made Locke’s selection official, his Cabinet still won’t be complete.
    He still does not have a health and human services secretary; former Senate Democratic leader Tom Daschle withdrew his nomination for that post amid a tax controversy. Among those under consideration to replace him is Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius.

    Locke still must get through Senate confirmation hearings to assume the post, and there are a number of issues over which he may face questions. He was briefly linked to the scandal over foreign contributions to President Bill Clinton’s 1996 campaign. In July 1998, he gave a deposition to the House Committee on Government Reform and Oversight about his relationships with questioned Clinton donors. But the committee later said the deposition produced no evidence that Locke knowingly accepted illegal campaign donations. Locke denied any wrongdoing, and he subsequently returned some checks tied to people implicated in the fundraising scandal, including $750 from John Huang. Huang, a former Commerce Department official, was the Democratic Party’s chief fundraiser for the Asian-American population in the 1996 elections, and he became one of the central figures in the national Democratic Party fundraising scandal.

    In December 1997, Locke’s political committee was fined a maximum $2,500 by state regulators after it admitted breaking campaign finance laws during two out-of-state fundraisers in 1996. And in March 1998, state investigators cleared Locke of wrongdoing following complaints that he unlawfully took $10,000 in campaign contributions from members of a Buddhist church.

    usatoday.com/news/washington/2009-02-25-obama-locke_N.htm

  96. Israel Asks Clinton to Boycott U.N. Conference

    February 25, 2009 By Larry Derfner, Mideast Watch

    In advance of her first visit to the Middle East next week, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is being beseeched by Israeli leaders to lead the fight against anti-Semitism and vilification of Israel, a trend that has increased since the war in Gaza. The Israelis will ask Clinton to boycott the U.N. World Conference Against Racism, due to take place in Switzerland in April. The U.N.’s first such conference, in Durban, South Africa, in 2001, singled Israel out for venomous condemnation, leading the Israeli and U.S. delegations to walk out in protest. The Israeli daily Yediot Aharonot reports:

    Social Affairs Minister Isaac Herzog, who was tasked by the government to head its counter anti-Semitism efforts, wants to use Clinton’s visit in order to create a united front against the conference. The U.S. has yet to announce whether or not it will take part in Geneva’s World Conference against Racism, although it did vote against holding it. Herzog said the conference “can set the world dozens of years back. It stands to focus on hatred towards Israel and the Jewish people. I urge the US to announce it will not take part in it and I call on it to lead the sane nation’s bloc in that move, as it has before.”

    Clinton to Pledge $900 Million to Palestinians

    Starting her visit Monday at an international donors conference in Egypt, Clinton will pledge some $900 million in aid to Gaza and the West Bank, administration officials are quoted as saying. After that meeting, which is designed to raise $2 billion in postwar rehabilitation funds for Gaza, the secretary will meet leaders in Israel and the West Bank. However, she is not slated to visit Gaza, which is ruled by Hamas, a radical Islamic regime that the United States does not recognize. Haaretz reports:

    Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has relayed messages to Israel in the past week expressing anger at obstacles Israel is placing to the delivery of humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip. A leading political source in Jerusalem noted that senior Clinton aides have made it clear that the matter will be central to Clinton’s planned visit to Israel next Tuesday.

    U.S. Congressman Seeks ‘Pressure’ on Israel Following Gaza Visit

    Following his visit to Gaza, Democratic Rep. Brian Baird of Washington State says he plans to brief Congress on the “level of destruction” and urge his colleagues to re-examine military aid to Israel. The Israeli daily Jerusalem Post reports: Baird visited Gaza last week with fellow Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota and was struck by “the level of destruction, the scope of it, specifically the civilian targets—schools, hospitals, industry.” Baird also said Israel had “apparently willfully destroyed any capacity of the Palestinians to rebuild their own infrastructure.”

    He also said he was troubled by the American origin of so much of the IDF weaponry used in Gaza, and suggested that the US should reconsider the military aid it provides and the weapons it sells to Israel. “We need to use every pressure available to make these needed changes happen,” he said. However, pro-Israel organizations in the United States said they weren’t too worried. “By and large, we continue to see support for Israel and understand why it was necessary for Israel’s leaders to do what they did,” one official said about Congress, speaking anonymously. “I’m not afraid of these members coming back and giving a briefing.”

    usnews.com/blogs/mideast-watch/2009/02/25/israel-asks-clinton-to-boycott-un-conference.html

  97. And it shames me to think that my very own country, some years back, i.e. the University of Toronto, held the very first (now annual) Israel Apartheid Week. They have also led boycotts against Jewish educators being hired, etc…

    This just makes me sick.

  98. mj Says:
    February 25th, 2009 at 9:13 am

    I’ve actually come to appreciate Pelosi. I don’t think she’s on the koolaid anymore. I think she was the only thing standing between him and his moronic social security fix, and she called his bluff on cramdowns, and she nixed his ridiculous business tax cuts in the stimulus.

    ==================

    She also defended family planning money in the Stimulus and complained of beign thrown under the bus twice. Maybe we should look into where she’s at now.

  99. henry Says:

    February 25th, 2009 at 12:19 pm
    Really would love to know anyone and everyone’s feelings here on inherited wealth. My personal position is 50%. No one has responded to me question?
    &&&&&&&&&&&&&&

    I am not clear on what the question is…

    What it should be taxed at?

    What percent of one’s income from inheritance makes it “inherited wealth” (getting $1,000 doesn’t make you wealthy by inheritance, but getting say $200,000 might…)

    Please clarify. We weren’t ignoring the question.

  100. Disclaimer; I swear, never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would read, much less agree with a non-dem.

    Having said that, here are some very interesting tidbits from John Batchelor’s column today about the repubs vs BHO. (I apologize for the length)

    The insight into the behind-the-scenes atmosphere is fascinating.

    “Here’s how it looked from the Republican side of the aisle. “[House Minority Leader John] Boehner told us,” a senior Republican recounted to me after the President’s address on the financial crisis to a joint session of Congress, “Behave, be cool, be nice, sit back, all smiles, no carping, no attacking the President, no trouble. For six months. And everyone is cool with that. The morale is great. The old guys are into it as much as the young. We just sat there through the speech and smiled and nodded. There was only one time there might have been towel snapping, when he mentioned there were no earmarks in the stimulus bill. The boys got a little rowdy at that point. A little out of line. Could you hear it on the TV? They were a little rude. The President kept looking to the Democrats for the love, and then he would look at us to act smug, and we gotta out of line at that earmark mention.”
    The GOP House members are a randy, sophisticated, energetic lot, and they are eager for the contest with the young Obama administration and the Democratic House leadership. So far the House GOP has confidence that not only will they not be overrun by the Democratic hordes and their media cavalry but also that they are attracting the ears of the Republican voters who sense a phenomenon building from the ash-heap left by DeLay, Abramoff and the Rovian administration.
    The same young Republican members who voted twice “No” against the grotesque TARP plan and the false-tongued Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson (left) in the 110th Congress are now joined by the old fogey leaders in the caucus already voting “No” twice to the gargantuan trillion dollar Democratic stimulus plan with not a single Republican vote for it.
    That was why the “towel snapping” moment during the president’s speech. Whether they are right or not, the GOP House members sense animal weakness in the Obama adminstration on just this point, that the stimulus plan won’t work, that the polls show the American voters doubt it will work, and that the Obama administration is clumsily defensive and prickly because they cannot demonstrate it will work.
    Hence the strange line, “No one messes with Joe,” in Obama’s speech, as if Joe Biden will be the enforcer of the stimulus trillions. “Joe Biden (right) is just another back-slapping senator who no one dislikes,” said senior House Republican told me, laughing and dismissing the question. “The most you can say is that he might be nutty.”
    “I feel sorry for him sometimes,” confided a senior Republican House member about President Obama. “He invited us over to the White House to explain to us how the stimulus plan is working, and how the budget is going to work, and he spoke to us a couple of times. He doesn’t act like he knows what’s going on with the economy. He’s so afraid of confrontation, when you challenge him, he backs off, like he doesn’t know the right answer. Who does? That’s why you kinda feel sorry for him. Not his guys, they don’t act like they know. Do they notice the stock market sinking? Who doesn’t? There’s this sense of disarray. The administration is made up of a lot of Number twos. The only one with any gravitas is (David) Axelrod (left). Geithner? He looks like he’s 12 years old, or a grad student. The president is like a perfect vice-president. That’s what the big speech was like. A vice-president was talking.”
    In the White House Fiscal Responsibility Summit the day before the speech, the bipartisan House and Senate members broke up into working groups assigned by the White House, and in the group on taxes, led by Secretary Tim Geithner (right) and Council of Economic Advisers chief Christina Romer, there were many senior politicians, including Olympia Snowe, Jon Kyl, Nadia Velasquez, Max Baucus, and Charlie Rangel. According to my source, the voice that pushed back hardest against Geithner’s facilitator remarks was Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel. This points to the possibility that the young adminstration is not just troubled by the revived and rascally GOP House, but also by the crafty lions on its own side. “Nancy Pelosi has a problem that Harry Raid does,” it was explained to me, “The Black Caucus and the big guys like (Jim) Clyburn and (Charlie) Rangel. Rangel lectured Geithner. Afterward there was joking that Geithner looks like he takes a Razor Scooter to work.”
    Asked about the President’s soaring approval ratings, the senior Republican said, “Yeah, he’s really popular, like in the 70s, but it’s his personal approval rating. On his handling of the econony, he’s down around 60 and sinking. That’s why we won’t attack him. We praise him. Bipartisan this and that, bipartisan anything. Go to the meetings, listen closely, shake hands. The President is a star. His financial team isn’t. And he knows it. When he protested that his stimulus bill was going to create all these green jobs, he was told back, what’s that do for a machinist in the UAW who just got his job yanked? And the President smiled and laughed sympathetically and said, ‘I was just joking with you.’”
    I reminded my source that once upon a time in the Great Depression, during the very month of March of FDR’s inauguration in 1933, Hollywood produced a wonderful fairy tale called “Gabriel Over the White House,” in which a pleasant, back-slapping, non-confrontational President Jasper Hammons, played by the vivacious Walter Huston, piles up his car in a joy ride, and while recovering from the accident is visited by the Archangel Gabriel, who inspires the President to lead without fear. The reawakened Jasper Hammond fires the hack Cabinet, discards Congress and the courts, and assumes dictatorial powers to confront a million man unemployed army march on the Capitol, face down machine gun toting gangsters who attack the White House, and challenge the war-mongering nations who owe the U.S. war debts. He is a wunderkind on the new medium of the national radio broadcast, and the people are inspired by him so much they regain their pride and promise.
    “No, no, no, that ain’t Obama,” said my best GOP House source. “Inspiration is not what you hear from the President. The one thing that comes across from being in the chamber with him is, that the thing you felt with Clinton, it’s not there, there’s no magic. The Democrats don’t feel it and we sure don’t. The President didn’t earn what he’s got, and no one’s afraid of him… Dictatorial power? Fascist. That’ll be the day. No ones worried about what he’s going to do. People applaud. What’s it mean?”
    John Batchelor is radio host of the John Batchelor Show in New York, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

  101. JanH Says:

    February 25th, 2009 at 1:31 pm
    Obama chooses Locke for Commerce post
    &&&&&

    After two failures, Obama was looking for a “locke” on the position.

  102. wbboei said:
    Obviously, there are other forces in play that move the market, but the concerns investors have about him that he is a tax and spend guy plus the concerns China has about his political will to cut the budget were not alleviated by last nights speech, based on the reaction by the audience that counts.

    ========================

    I suppose you’ve looked at just which investor blocs are moving their money in which direction?

    I’m not hinting at disagreement because I’m not following this at all.

  103. With apologies I ask what does family planning have to with a stimulas package/
    I believe it should be addressed just as I believe aids education, education and a half of a dozen other issues are paramount but I believe none belong in a stimulas package.

  104. Basil, Southern Born,

    Yes, I agree. BO definitely didn’t treat his star cabinet member, Hillary, properly. I watched him carefully when it came to her… as he made his way down the aisle. He pursed his lips tightly and looked over her grabbing her hand while reach over her with the other to shake an older man’s hand sitting behind her. He didn’t appear to even say, hello- to Hillary. Just a nod, basically ignoring her.

    ingrate!

  105. henry Says:
    One moe time
    do you think inherited wealth is fair/
    \No one has responded to my question. I find that very interesting?

    ====================

    My opinion is too nuanced to be worth much. This was an issue in 2000 and Gore said the sort of family assets we want to protect were already protected in the tax at that time, which Bush wanted to repeal. In 2008 or 2007 Obama was talking about “the Paris Hilton tax” or law or something, meaning that he thought she had inheritied too much money and should get less. This was about the time she was going to jail (unjustly imo).

    Otho I grew up in farming country where a family at lower middle class lifestyle and very little spendable income had to protect their land from inheritance tax or their family would lose the farm.* Same with some small businesses such as a weekly family owned small town newspaper. Such assets can be worth a lot on paper while bringing in very little income, but mean a lot to the family. As I said Gore said in 2000 that they were already protected as exceptions or beneath some sort of threshold.

    In this sort of distress sale, the property will wind up owned by agri-business or some newspaper chain, and qualitly will go down as well as the actual family suffering financially and emotionally.

    I think a law could be written that would distinguish between this sort of asset and something that is just on paper such as stocks and coupons (even though Adam Smith says those can mean a lot to some people emotionally).

    Certainly there are some inheritances that could well be taxed without hurting anyone: take off the cream. The Hiltons etc. Probably large amounts to be got there.

    There would also be a middle ground where Harold Roark or someone is working long hours and creating more jobs and good products, to leave his children an extra million or so.

    So my opinion is that it would depend on who wrote the law and where they drew the line etc. And we know what’s likely to happen if it’s done in the same way that other recent bills have been done. The rich will protect themselves one way or another anyway. We know who is likelly to get caught in the pinch and it isn’t the rich.

    * That’s where when someone dies you mummify the body and prop it up behind lace curtains and tell people she won’t come out becasue she saw something nasty in the woodshed.

  106. Gary Locke will be okay at commerce. He is soft spoken and not flamboyant. He is business friendly. His asian roots will be an asset. I believe he and Hillary have a good working relationship. He was a supporter of her candidacy and I used to see him and his wife at campaign events. I do not know him personally.

  107. Yes, I agree. BO definitely didn’t treat his star cabinet member, Hillary, properly. I watched him carefully when it came to her… as he made his way down the aisle. He pursed his lips tightly and looked over her grabbing her hand while reach over her with the other to shake an older man’s hand sitting behind her. He didn’t appear to even say, hello- to Hillary. Just a nod, basically ignoring her.
    ————————–
    Some days he is touchy feely. Other days he is cold and distant. Do you suppose it is just his moods? He is moody, and if he does not get a dose of adulation he is inclined to get depressed.

    I suspect she is telling him things he does not want to hear but needs to hear them for the good of the country. He had best listen.

    As Napoleon said speeches on the eve of battle do little good. The seasoned soldier pays no attention to them. The new recruit forgets them at the first sign of battle.

    Again, he needs to get into the active business of governing as opposed to the passive business of speechifying to be effective. Public polls at this point are meaningless, and unremarkable when viewed in the context of past presidents

    The question is does he have a concrete plan for solving our economic plan and creating the five million jobs he promised, or will his plan with 8000 earmarks attached to it make the situation worse. We need actions now not more words.

  108. henry, wbboei,

    While I’m at it — must go soon — I’ll throw a bone to aristocracy. People like Bill Clinton who are smart and talented enough can make it up from poverty to Rhodes Scholarship, but there aren’t enough such people. Imo it’s not a bad thing for a family smart enough to earn a fortune to bring their children up with plenty of time for education and travel; we could get some very capable people out of that class.

    Even if a large percent of that class are parasites, still the few good ones can make up for them. Eg Winston Churchill.

    Unfortunately in the real world money is going to get wasted. Less environmental damage is done by perfume than by building roads to Pork Nowhere.

  109. Hillary is a strong supporter of Israel and any “tough” language is simply to show Muslim/Arab leaders that she will be more engaged than Bush. I am sure she has already had many private talks with all the players in Israel and they will understand any negative public comments she makes are really to appease the “Arab Street”. Off course there will be tough decisions to be made, but my guess is that Israel will condition any more concessions on Iran not getting it’s hands on a nuclear weapon, with or without the assistance of the US military.
    As far as the conference, unless Hillary wants to attend and condemn it’s complete absurdity, she should decline to attend.

  110. wbboei Says:
    February 25th, 2009 at 2:57 pm

    Gary Locke will be okay at commerce. He is soft spoken and not flamboyant. He is business friendly. His asian roots will be an asset. I believe he and Hillary have a good working relationship. He was a supporter of her candidacy and I used to see him and his wife at campaign events. I do not know him personally.

    ================

    Thanks for the info. Maybe he and Chu can work out something constructive over tea. In Peking if not in Oregon.

  111. I think obama was way out of his element last night and scared to death. I think his “icy” look is one of desperation.

  112. I suppose you’ve looked at just which investor blocs are moving their money in which direction?

    I’m not hinting at disagreement because I’m not following this at all.
    —————————
    Its the broad market index I was referring to. I have not tried to analyze it by sector.

  113. I think obama was way out of his element last night and scared to death. I think his “icy” look is one of desperation.
    ————————–
    If he is not scared, he is not paying attention. Most everyone is scared and the people who know him best and are not on drugs are the scaredest of all.

  114. wbboei Says:
    February 25th, 2009 at 3:20 pm

    I suppose you’ve looked at just which investor blocs are moving their money in which direction?

    I’m not hinting at disagreement because I’m not following this at all.
    —————————
    Its the broad market index I was referring to. I have not tried to analyze it by sector.

    =====================

    I was thinking of size rather than sector. If the small investors are pulling out, that’s probably sincere opinion. If big manipulative-size sums are pulling out — or coming in as props — that may have other motives.

    If someone wants to see stock prices as an informal poll (good idea imo), they might get better results by looking at the smaller investors.

  115. What would it cost to buy or build the Israelis a paradise island of their own somewhere out of range of their enemies? Fiji Islands maybe?

  116. That John Batchelor piece is fascinating. So it looks like the GOP is giving Obama six months till they start going after him.

    There were a lot of good quotes in that, but here’s one that stands out to me: “Inspiration is not what you hear from the President. The one thing that comes across from being in the chamber with him is, that the thing you felt with Clinton, it’s not there, there’s no magic. The Democrats don’t feel it and we sure don’t. The President didn’t earn what he’s got, and no one’s afraid of him.”

    I suspect a lot of GOP members think Hillary got the shaft like we do, and that Obama isn’t ready for prime time.

  117. LOL…turndown…

    Historically, the Israelis will never give up the Wailing Wall among other important Jewish archeological finds. As well, giving up a country that is more advanced than many of those around it won’t happen. Given the obstacles the Israelis have had to overcome over the years just to have a homeland…well…

    nice thought though.

  118. As far as inherited wealth, I am against the estate tax period. I am a 46 yr old atty. and currently pay over 254k in taxes . Under BO’s plan, I will pay close to 40% by 2011, and the 3.5 million estate tax will be reinstated after it’s repeal in 2010. I stand to inherit a modest sum of money from my Mother, which is just about at the 3.5 million threshold. Why should anyone have to hand over 45% in estate taxes that you or your family have worked decades to accumulate? It is simply unfair and a redistribution of wealth which I oppose.

  119. And…

    There is no place on earth that the Israelis won’t be attacked from. “Anihilation of Jews world over” is the mandate of their enemies.

  120. Hillary is a strong supporter of Israel and any “tough” language is simply to show Muslim/Arab leaders that she will be more engaged than Bush.
    —————————-
    I think the survival and prosperity of Israel is a matter of the highest priority for Hillary. But Israeli is to its credit a democracy, which means there are competing political factions to deal with. Also, she must deal with Mr Obama whose commitment to Israel is ambiguous in my opinion.

  121. jbstonesfan
    playing devils advocate i would say that the money accumulated by your parents/grandparents etc gave you a pronounced advantage over the majority of society during your life and they were able to accumulate said wealth on the backs of those not afforded a great education.
    Not saying I agree or disagee in fact I am quite addled by the subject. However, the fact that some wanna be starlet by means of birth right orders people around as servants is grossly repugnant to me.

  122. I have noted here a couple of times that market averages are falling, though on very low volume.

    That means that funds are either finished selling, have already gone to cash, or are buying in a bit at a time, like Warren Buffett. He has stated several times since September-October that he is going into equities in a big way.

  123. turndownobama-com Says:

    February 25th, 2009 at 3:28 pm
    What would it cost to buy or build the Israelis a paradise island of their own somewhere out of range of their enemies? Fiji Islands maybe?

    Why would you suggest Israel give up a land which encompases their history. Jerusalem was Never a capital of an arab country. There was no Palestinian nation. Why not move the Palestinians? They are the ones who rejected the UN partition and peace and started the war.

  124. Paula

    I think the GOP is sitting back for six months to give BO the time to hang himself, no help needed. And no blame others excuse available

  125. Emjay, I think the GOP knows if they go after him now there will be a public backlash. They figure in six months his ratings will be low enough that he’ll start to appear vulnerable.

  126. As far as inherited wealth, I am against the estate tax period. I am a 46 yr old atty. and currently pay over 254k in taxes . Under BO’s plan, I will pay close to 40% by 2011, and the 3.5 million estate tax will be reinstated after it’s repeal in 2010. I stand to inherit a modest sum of money from my Mother, which is just about at the 3.5 million threshold. Why should anyone have to hand over 45% in estate taxes that you or your family have worked decades to accumulate? It is simply unfair and a redistribution of wealth which I oppose.
    ———————————
    I agree with you on those numbers.

    Would you feel the same way if you stood to inherit one hundred million as Caroline Kennedy did?

    I am loading the dice a little with that question since it is a well known fact that the core of the Kennedy family fortune came from illegal bootlegging activities.

  127. I understand Henry. However, it is not like the Rockerfellers/Kennedy’s and or other dynasty’s passing down hundred’s of millions of dollars for untold generations. While I appreciate that 3-4 million dollars is a hell of a lot of money, it certainly is not enough for most middle class people to retire comfortably on, and still leave their kids something. The “advantages” in my opinion, are hard work, and not simply claiming to be “victimized” by the “man”.

  128. Paula,

    I do think though that turndown’s comment was a “tongue in cheek” one. But being Jewish, I’m a little sensitive of the issue.

  129. WASHINGTON, (AFP) – Pakistan, under fire in Washington, vowed to work with President Barack Obama’s administration to “defeat terrorism” as it opens three-way talks Wednesday with Afghanistan to draft a new strategy.

    The talks came as a top US senator proposed that the United States and its allies commit an urgent four to five billion dollars to avert chaos in Pakistan, the Islamic world’s only declared nuclear power. Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi met Tuesday with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and hailed a “convergence” in views on fighting extremism in South Asia. “Pakistan is willing to work with the American administration to fight extremism and terrorism,” Qureshi told reporters, flanked by Clinton. “We are determined to defeat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations,” he said.

    Clinton was more cautious, saying that she was “very grateful for the minister?s advice and counsel” and would consult closely with Pakistan as part of the strategic review. Clinton, Qureshi and Afghanistan’s Foreign Minister Rangeen Dadfar Spanta were due to hold a dinner Wednesday before three-way talks on Thursday.

    Obama has put a new focus on fighting extremism in South Asia, with plans to deploy another 17,000 US troops to Afghanistan.

    Pakistan has come under increasing criticism from US lawmakers who accuse the frontline ally of turning a blind eye to Islamic militants holed up in its lawless northwest bordering Afghanistan.

    Pro-Taliban militants on Tuesday declared an indefinite ceasefire in the Swat Valley after the government agreed to impose Islamic sharia law — the goal of a bloody two-year campaign in the erstwhile ski resort area. Qureshi, speaking earlier after talks with his Afghan counterpart at a Washington hotel, described the deal as “a local solution to a local problem, which is quick dispensation of justice.” “It is not any appeasement towards militants,” Qureshi told reporters. “Pakistan’s determination and resolve to defeat terrorism is as sound as it was.”

    Senator John Kerry, who met separately with Qureshi, said that Pakistan needed 7.5 billion dollars in non-military assistance to Pakistan over five years — four to five billion dollars of it urgently. The aid would come from the United States and its allies and be contingent on Pakistan preventing Al-Qaeda and Taliban militants from using its territory — a growing concern for Western powers. “If we fail, we face a truly frightening prospect: terrorist sanctuary, economic meltdown, and spiraling radicalism, all in a nation with 170 million inhabitants and a full arsenal of nuclear weapons,” Kerry said in a statement. Kerry, the failed 2004 presidential candidate of Obama’s Democratic Party, is the chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
    He made the aid plea with former Republican senator Chuck Hagel and said he would introduce the legislation with a sitting Republican, Richard Lugar.

    A congressional report on Monday said the United States had spent 12.3 billion dollars since 2002 but failed to eliminate the “terrorist threat” on Pakistan’s border with Afghanistan. Of the aid, more than 70 percent was military spending — mostly funding for Pakistani operations in the “war on terror.”

    news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20090225/ts_afp/usdiplomacypakistanafghanistanunrest_20090225024219

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