Oh Boy, Right Again – Let X Equal X

Comedy Central and boy blue websites attacked us for daring to publish The Rise Of The Obama Crimelords, Part II and Part I.

Now, evidence mounts that we are right about the Obama Crimelords and slow others are beginning to dare follow us as we track the evidence.

The Rise Of The Obama Crimelords featured extensive excerpts from Simon Johnson’s review of the financial oligarchy, The Quiet Coup (which article was later quoted approvingly by many genuine progressives such as Paul Krugman).

The Rise Of The Obama Crimelords, Part II included various video clips from The Godfather and quoted Stuart Varney’s article which detailed Obama’s attempt to keep Mafia-like control of companies by making repayment of government loans at least difficult. We also included more information on Obama as the Third Bush Term.

The latest evidence we are right about the Obama Crimelords comes from Big Media ABCNews.

A leading bankruptcy attorney representing hedge funds and money managers told ABC News Saturday that Steve Rattner, the leader of the Obama administration’s Auto Industry Task Force, threatened one of the firms, an investment bank, that if it continued to oppose the administration’s Chrysler bankruptcy plan, the White House would use the White House press corps to destroy its reputation.

Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton are lessons in how the Obama Crimelords and the PINO Big Blogs destroy reputations.

Obama’s crimelord flacks perfunctorily denied the Chicago Capone threats. But as is the case with many great crime stories – there is a credible, courageous, witness willing to talk:

Thomas Lauria, Global Practice Head of the Financial Restructuring and Insolvency Group at White & Case, told ABC News that Rattner suggested to an official of the boutique investment bank Perella Weinberg Partners that officials of the Obama White House would embarrass the firm for opposing the Obama administration plan, which President Obama announced Thursday, and which requires creditors to accept roughly 29 cents on the dollar for an estimated $6.8 billion owed by Chrysler.[snip]

Perella Weinberg Partners, Lauria said, “was directly threatened by the White House and in essence compelled to withdraw its opposition to the deal under the threat that the full force of the White House press corps would destroy its reputation if it continued to fight. That’s how hard it is to stand on this side of the fence.”

Is Lauria making stuff up? True, White and Case is a very prestigious law firm and understands reputation is an important business credential. True, Thomas Lauria would be very wary of making unsubstantiated allegations. Is there any evidence, that anything Lauria is saying is true? Have there been attempts (not including the reputation destroying election campaign tactics employed by Obama in every single one of his election campaigns) to destroy the reputation of Lauria’s clients? Have any of Lauria’s clients been forced to withdraw?:

Perella Weinberg Partners, which owned Chrysler debt through its Xerion Fund, was one of Lauria’s clients in this bankruptcy, but no longer is. Before the Thursday deadline, Joseph Perella and Peter Weinberg tried to join the larger creditors — JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, and Goldman Sachs — who are owed roughly 70% of Chrysler’s debt and had already agreed to participate with the administration’s plan.

All four financial institutions are recipients of up to $100 billion in federal government bailout funds, though the Obama administration insists the matters were kept completely separate.[snip]

Lauria said his clients “are mainly fiduciaries for pension plans, college endowments, retirement plans and credit unions who invested in low yield supposedly very secure first lien debt” with Chrysler.

President Obama singled out Lauria’s clients for criticism when he announced the Chrysler plan on Thursday.[snip]

Lauria said the president’s assertion that his clients weren’t willing to make any sacrifice is false. The clients were willing to take 50 cents on the dollar from Chrysler for their debt, he said. [snip]

“He stands my clients up as basically the reason Chrysler is going into bankruptcy,” Lauria said. “He wrongly says they’re not willing to make any sacrifice. And then he says he does not stand with us.”

Lauria said the president saying he doesn’t stand with his clients “kind of sounds like ‘You’re fair game.’ In whatever sense. People are scared. They have gotten death treats. Some have been told people are going to come to their houses. God forbid if some nut did something, I’m just wondering how the president would feel.”

Hopium addled addicts will trash Lauria. They will suspect, as do we, Lauria is taking to heart Big Pink admonitions about the thug Obama Crimelords. You see, Lauria in the past has donated to Hillary Clinton and is a political independent.

The Miami area-based attorney describes himself as an independent, and says after waiting in line for six hours last November he ended up not voting in the presidential election. He donated $10,000 to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee in 2008 and $1,000 to then-Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-NY, in 2006.


Laurie Anderson
began her song Let X Equal X with the declaration “Oh Boy, right again” and stated that “x” should equal “x” – a clever way of saying ‘let truth be told’.

We’ll have some more of our “x equal x” admonitions, and the latest developments, tomorrow.

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91 thoughts on “Oh Boy, Right Again – Let X Equal X

  1. For those that don’t know artist Laurie Anderson’s work, here is a selection (O Superman (which predates, and has nothing to do with Obama)) from her much larger concert work “United States”:

  2. The audio of the Lauria phone call can be heard at the link.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/white-house-directly-threatened-perella-weinberg-over-chrysler-2009-5

    The suggestion that the adminsitration would direct the White House press corps, composed of newspaper reports and other journalists who cover the Whtie House, to ruin the reputation of holdouts is sure to raise the ire of people who prize media independence. It’s not clear whether this was an idle threat or whether the White House believes it exercises this level of control over the journalists asigned to cover it. It harkens back to the dirty tricks tactics of past administrations, and suggest a cavalier attitude toward the exercise of political power to control the actions of private citizens.

    One test of whether the White House press corps is as compliant as the White House seems to believe will be how they handle Lauria’s charge. The story has not yet been picked up by the traditional media. The blog Zero Hedge, a new but well-read financial blog, picked up the story and posted a downloadable excerpt from the radio interview. (You can download the clip below.)

    The charge also undermines a key administration claim about the Chrysler restructing plan. It has insisted that the plan was reasonable, and held up the fact that the majority of senior creditors approved it as eveidence of this reasonableness. If the approvals were obtained through threats, however, theyt would indicate nothing more than a fear of crossing the administration.

  3. Admin,

    What I saw first hand in Iowa and NM was bullying at the most highest leve. The Chicago hoods and O know no other way.

    By the way, they are investigating Edwards campaign contributions because of his affair. As always, I guess there is no reason to investigate Os contributions. The campagin most likely to cheat is the one that won by bullying. How can you justify investigating McCain, and now Edwards and not others. I believe that Edwards and all of the Dims need to be looked at, yes, even HRC.

  4. Rather than “Obama crime lords”, I see more of a pattern of the puppets on the stage have changed but the people pulling the strings remain the same. An even more egregious abuse of power was forcing BOA to absorb the putrefying corpse of Merrill-Lynch and this was prior to Obama. The biggest threat to Lewis and BOA, not mentioned in the Reuters story, was not lose of jobs but being frozen out of the TARP money…Real Mafia tactics by treasury and the Fed.

    ” NEW YORK, April 23 (Reuters) – Bank of America Corp (BAC.N) CEO Kenneth Lewis was pressured by senior federal officials Henry Paulson and Ben Bernanke to accept a merger with troubled Merrill Lynch & Co or lose his job, New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said on Thursday.
    In a letter to senior members of congressional committees and the head of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Cuomo said Lewis met then U.S. Treasury Secretary Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke in Washington in mid-December.
    Cuomo said the SEC, which is charged with protecting investor interests, “appears to have been kept in the dark” about talks between the banks and federal officials that followed.
    “During those meetings, the federal government officials pressured Bank of America not to seek to rescind the merger agreement,” Cuomo wrote. “We do not yet have a complete picture of the Federal Reserve’s role in these matters because the Federal Reserve has invoked the bank examination privilege.”
    ww.reuters.com/article/marketsNews/idINN2330403020090423?rpc=44&pageNumber=1&virtualBrandChannel=0

  5. When the Edwards campaign contributions begin to be examined, it would be a logical time for the news media to finally explore Obama’s many questionable donations from overseas that were uncovered during the campaign. Also, his campaign funds that mysteriously made their way to ACORN for services they didn’t provide. Of course, this will never happen…

  6. 14 Schools announced closing in NM due to the flu. Although they show 1 on this chart in NM, there are around 7-9 suspected. So this chart has a significant lag time. Also there has been a jump in NY and TX. Still with the numbers we have seen only 1 death.

    U.S. Human Cases of H1N1 Flu Infection
    (As of May 3, 2009 11:00 AM ET) States # of
    laboratory
    confirmed
    cases Deaths
    Alabama 1
    Arizona 18
    California 26
    Colorado 4
    Connecticut 2
    Delaware 10
    Florida 3
    Illinois 3
    Indiana 3
    Iowa 1
    Kansas 2
    Kentucky* 1
    Massachusetts 7
    Michigan 2
    Minnesota 1
    Missouri 1
    Nebraska 1
    Nevada 1
    New Hampshire 1
    New Jersey 7
    New Mexico 1
    New York 63
    Ohio 3
    Rhode Island 1
    South Carolina 15
    Tennessee 1
    Texas 40 1
    Utah 1
    Virginia 3
    Wisconsin 3
    TOTAL (30) 226 cases 1 death
    International Human Cases of Swine Flu Infection
    See: World Health Organization

    *Case is resident of KY but currently hospitalized in GA.

  7. May 03, 2009

    Government by Thuggery – ‘The Chicago Way’

    Rick Moran

    Man, when the White House plays hardball, they play it “The Chicago Way” – brass knuckles, groin kicks, and threats to destroy their adversaries. And when confronted with allegations of their thuggery, instead of claiming their complete innocence, the administration practices another time honored “Chicago Way” custom and sneers “Prove it!”

    Jack Tapper of ABC News – a guy who is turning into one of the few bulldog reporters on the White House beat – got this information from an attorney for one of the hedge funds involved in the Chrysler bankruptcy negotiations: A leading bankruptcy attorney representing hedge funds and money managers told ABC News Saturday that Steve Rattner, the leader of the Obama administration’s Auto Industry Task Force, threatened one of the firms, an investment bank, that if it continued to oppose the administration’s Chrysler bankruptcy plan, the White House would use the White House press corps to destroy its reputation.

    The White House said the story was false. “The charge is completely untrue,” said White House deputy press secretary Bill Burton, “and there’s obviously no evidence to suggest that this happened in any way.”

    Thomas Lauria, Global Practice Head of the Financial Restructuring and Insolvency Group at White & Case, told ABC News that Rattner suggested to an official of the boutique investment bank Perella Weinberg Partners that officials of the Obama White House would embarrass the firm for opposing the Obama administration plan, which President Obama announced Thursday, and which requires creditors to accept roughly 29 cents on the dollar for an estimated $6.8 billion owed by Chrysler.
    Lauria first told the story, without naming Rattner, to Frank Beckmann on Detroit’s WJR-AM radio.

    Perella Weinberg Partners,”was directly threatened by the White House and in essence compelled to withdraw its opposition to the deal under the threat that the full force of the White House press corps would destroy its reputation if it continued to fight. That’s how hard it is to stand on this side of the fence,” according to the attorney. It turns out Perella’s stake in Chrysler debt was small potatoes compared to big banks like JP Morgan, Citigroup, and Goldman. Do you think that the fact those banks got up to $100 billion in bail out money had anything to do with them embracing the administration’s plan for Chrysler?

    I think it also significant they sent out a deputy instead of Gibbs to deny the story. The crack about “obviously no evidence to suggest that this happened in any way,” is typical “non-denial, denial for a president when they are caught doing something they shouldn’t.

    No doubt the White House press corps would eagerly do their master’s bidding if told to destroy someone or some firm’s reputation. At least most of them would. Jack Tapper of ABC just might be one of the last honest reporters in Washington which makes him extremely vulnerable. For the press, there is safety in the pack and Tapper taking on the role of Diogenes might be dealt with the same way that Mayor Daley of Chicago deals with reporters who displease him; the “Freeze-out” or “The Big Freeze.” Tapper’s sources in the WH, his access to high level administration officials, could disappear. Obama could conveniently forget to call on him at press conferences. Exclusive on camera interviews would be routinely denied.

    In short, they might very well prevent Tapper from doing his job. But that’s “The Chicago Way” and the White House is now in the hands of people who play that game with thuggish efficiency.

    americanthinker.com/blog/2009/05/government_by_thuggery_the_chi.html

  8. White House Grants Jarrett Ethics Waiver to Lead Efforts to Bring 2016 Olympics to Chicago

    May 03, 2009

    On Friday night, the White House posted on its website a special ethics waiver allowing senior adviser Valerie Jarrett to lead the White House’s efforts to bring the 2016 Olympics to Chicago.
    Jarrett had previously served as Vice Chair of the non-profit entity “Chicago 2016.”

    The waiver was signed by Special Counsel to the President and Designated Agency Ethics Official Norm Eisen. It states that: “After consultation with the Counsel to the President, I hereby waive the requirements of paragraph 2 of the Ethics Pledge of Ms. Valerie Jarrett with respect to her former relationship with Chicago 2016. I have determined that it is in the public interest to grant the waiver because Ms. Jarrett’s knowledge and expertise on the United States’ sole Olympic bid for 2016 make her an ideal person to lead Administration efforts in support of this bid. I understand that Ms. Jarrett will otherwise comply with the remainder of the pledge and with all preexisting government ethics rules.”

    Eisen writes on the blog that although Chicago 2016 was not Jarrett’s “former employer” in traditional terms, President Obama’s original lobbyist rules also includes institutions on which appointees served as directors or officers.

    In fact it was precisely Jarrett’s experience on Chicago 2016 that made her perfect to lead the White House efforts, the White House decided, since she “developed knowledge about the process that will make her a powerful advocate and liaison. Although Valerie previously volunteered with Chicago 2016, she has no continuing financial relationship with them. Since the Administration already plans on vigorously supporting the United States’ sole 2016 Olympic bid, we felt that letting Valerie lead our efforts was strongly in the public interest.”

    The conundrum for the White House is that in instituting its semi-ban on lobbyists, often those with expertise on a subject have worked as lobbyists for, or directors of organizations devoted to that subject. (To be clear: Jarrett was not a lobbyist for Chicago 2016.)

    Two days after introducing what he heralded as the most sweeping ethics rules in American history — ones that would “close the revolving door that lets lobbyists come into government freely” — President Obama waived those rules for his nominee for Deputy Secretary of Defense, William Lynn, who was a registered lobbyist for the defense contractor Raytheon until last Fall.

    The New York Times recently told the story of the Washington advocacy director for Human Rights Watch Tom Malinowski, who many in the human rights community wanted to be the President’s human rights chief. But he had been a lobbyist — on behalf of the victims of genocide, mind you — so he didn’t get the gig. And he didn’t get a waiver.

    White House senor adviser David Axelrod told the Times that “it’s painful. There are a lot of good people out there who are philosophically simpatico with us and are very skilled and would be very valuable to us.” But, he said, “you can’t have carve-outs for lobbyists you like and exclude those that you don’t. It would be very hard for people to understand that distinction. This is one of those cases where we’ve had to sacrifice the help of a lot of very valuable people.”

    In addition to the waiver for former Raytheon lobbyist Lynn, the White House in March also announced waivers for Jocelyn Frye, former general counsel at the National Partnership for Women & Families, and Cecilia Muñoz, the former senior vice president for the National Council of La Raza, allowing them to work on issues for which they lobbied.

    Instead of granting waivers, the Obama White House appears to now be pursuing a new course for administration officials who lobbied or worked for interested private firms. Instead, these officials are signing letters of recusal detailing issue areas where they will not work so as to avoid conflicts of interest. An example: former Goldman Sachs lobbyist Mark Patterson, who now serves as the chief of staff for Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner.

    ABC News has been requesting copies of these letters of recusal since February, to no avail.

    blogs.abcnews.com/politicalpunch/2009/05/white-house-gra.html

  9. There is alot of politics and hopefully some science involved in this swine flu pandemic We do know that while Barack is not alarmed he is alert–so alert that he refused to close the border. He said that is because the horse is out of the barn, another one of those vague statements accepted by our unctuous press without critical analysis.
    But Barack Hussein Obama is an honorable man.

    There is good reason for this: Obama is a cool president, according to no lesser a personage than Howard Fineman. And in anyone’s
    courtroom Howard would be accepted as a credible expert witness of the subject of Obama. Credible that is until he took the oath and the Bible leaped from his hand. Yet Barack Hussein Obama is without question an honorable man.

    That being the case, it is unthinkable that Barack Hussie Obama who bowed from the waist to the King of Saudi America and refused to provide proof where he was borne and protected Tony Rezko against the interests of his own constituents would fail to protect the American People. To suggest such a thing is racist, and possibly wright.

    But if Barack Husseing Obama is an honorable man he would tell us what he really knows, rather than bamboozling us. For example, if might dispense with his normal empty rhetroic and tell us why they shut down schools on suspicion of a single case. That is a hell of alot more than they do with ordinary flu now isnt it. He would tell us why if they shut down the schools and the quarantine such cases in Mexico he is unwilling to shut down the border.

    Could it possibly be that our cool President is elevating protection of the economy over protection of the health of its citizens? To answer that inquiry the following questions should be put to Mr. Obama and whoever is running the infectuous disease section of CDC probably still Anthony Fauci. Barack may know the betting line of the Bulls, Bears and White Sox but this would be way over his head. Question:

    1. Is there evidence that this swine flu vrus was made in a laboratory? In that case we have been attacked.

    2. Does this virus produce eboli type symptoms i.e. bleeding from the nose and mouth?

    3. Is this virus likely to hit in a second wave six months hence as the 1918 pandemic did?

    4. If they are quarantining the case in Mexico why would shutting the border do no good?

    5. If this is no big deal why do they close entire schools when there is one suspected case? Do they do that with normal flu?

    6. Not to sound paranoid about it but what does CDC–and by extension Mr. Obama know that he is not telling us?

    7. Is Mr. Obama weighing the risk to our health if the borders are shut against the risk to our economy if that happens, and like a gambler deciding to hold em rather than fold em?

    Seems like the public has a right to know.

  10. If we had a responsible press corp these questions would have been asked by now, would they not? And maybe there is nothing to them. But how are we going to know if they dont tell us and no one asks.

  11. PROTECTING YOURSELF FROM MEXICAN SWINE FLU
    Written by Dr. Jack Wheeler
    Tuesday, 28 April 2009

    The incompetence of President Zero and his DHS secretary Janet Napolitano has now reached lethal levels in their refusal to militarily close the US-Mexico border or even airplane flights from Mexico.

    Yet now that the swine flu epidemic has spread from Mexico into the US, we cannot worry about Zero, much less expect him to protect us in any way. Let’s focus on what you can do right now at this moment.

    The CDC has identified the virus as a H1N1 virus called swine influenza A. This virus has been known for over 40 years, infecting humans directly from birds such as ducks (avian flu) or pigs (swine flu).

    Never before could it be transmitted from one human to another. The virus has now evolved to where it can. This new human-to-human transmission is what is making the H1N1 pandemic.

    Durk Pearson and Sandy Shaw suggest the following prophylactic measures to protect their friends at To The Point. As Durk says, “I’m afraid that you are not going to like this, but I really do know my biology…”

    *Avoid restaurants – hand to mouth transmission of the virus is more often important than aerosols.

    *Wash your hands when you return home. Best is with rubbing alcohol, a very effective anti-viral hand-wash.

    *Have a supply of hospital or EMT anti-viral hand wipes in your car and use them if there is an outbreak near you. Do NOT use them when there is no outbreak – you don’t want to drive the selection of antibiotic resistant skin bacteria.

    *Open your mail and discard the envelopes, then wash your hands before reading the contents (which will have been exposed to far fewer people).

    *Avoid areas of high population density; the probability of an epidemic increases with the SQUARE of the population density. Until the risk of a pandemic is over, stay out of ALL cities.

    *Avoid crowds.

    *Avoid travel by airplane, subway, taxi, or train. The only safe way to travel is via your own personal automobile.

    *Do your shopping in the morning when there are as few people in the stores as possible, make as few shopping trips as possible, and visit as few stores as possible for as short a time as possible. Wash your hands afterward, such as with rubbing alcohol.

    *Avoid places like resorts, casinos, museums, plays, concerts, etc, that attract travelers. This most certainly includes HOTELS AND MOTELS.

    * Avoid places with multifamily dwellings such as apartment buildings.

    *If you can, temporarily move to an isolated rural area of low population density, which means less pandemic. Best would be such an area of high altitude and few clouds for lots of UV, which kills viruses outside of buildings. And/or a windy place — the viruses are blown away rather than building up in a cloud over the town.

    Durk and Sandy have developed a nutrient formula which they believe will provide effective prophylactic protection from the human swine flu virus. It is composed of materials shown to be effective in numerous animal studies for H1N1, does not require FDA approval, and can be quickly produced in mass quantities.

    As soon as the production of their formula is up and running – which may be within a week – all TTP subscribers will receive notification of its availability.

    In the meantime – TTP urges you to immediately put the above suggestions into effect for your life and those of your family and friends.

    One last note. There is a strong suspicion by many that this is biowarfare. Perhaps, but doubtful.

    The Russians, Chinese, French, British, Israelis, and the US could construct this H1N1 virus – which, again, has appeared before naturally, though not in a highly human-to-human contagious form. Of these, only the first two are perfidious enough to be true suspects.

    Yet both know that the epidemic could not be contained to the US and would inevitably spread to their own countries, which would be devastated far worse than the US. Neither have enough respirators or Tamiflu reserves. The Fourth World state of their medical care and sanitation would guarantee massive infection and death.

    As for Iran or Al Qaeda and Iran, they have shown no signs that they have this sort of technology, nor does North Korea. And forget about the rumor about the vials of pathogens supposedly stolen from the Army biodefense lab at Ft. Detrick. Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis (VEE) virus has nothing to do with H1N1.

    Mexico – like China – is a perfect natural breeding place for hybrid flu viruses. There are ducks and/or chickens, pigs, and humans on the same farms, poor farm sanitation, and the farm produce is taken to high population density cities.

    The cause, however, is not important right now. What is critically important is for you to take action to protect yourself. Follow the above advice. Within a week, hopefully, we can tell you where to get a pill that should provide substantial protection against infection.

  12. Hmmmmmmm….. MSM is ignoring this story……and no one has said “HOW” he died….only that it was “SUDDEN”

    King nephew, 48,dies in Greensboro

    The Associated Press
    Published: Sun, May. 03, 2009 02:00AM

    GREENSBORO — The Rev. Vernon C. King, a nephew of Martin Luther King Jr. and pastor of St. James Baptist Church in Greensboro, has died. He was 48.

    The King family said in a statement Saturday that King died a day earlier in Greens boro. The family did not say how he died.

    King was the youngest son of Martin Luther King Jr.’s only brother, A.D. King Sr. He was a graduate of Morehouse College and pastor of several churches in Georgia and North Carolina.
    King also served on the boards of the King Center and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, an organization his uncle helped found.

    Funeral arrangements were pending.

    newsobserver.com/news/story/1511331.html

  13. wbboei Says:
    May 3rd, 2009 at 10:15 pm

    PROTECTING YOURSELF FROM MEXICAN SWINE FLU
    Written by Dr. Jack Wheeler
    Tuesday, 28 April 2009
    ***********
    I don’t know who he is but anyone with a Ph.D. in Philosophy who calls himself Dr. when he is writing about at medical subject is a fraud, IMHO.

  14. Admin> brilliant analysis of the evidence and its clear implications. Mr. Obama’s statement was false, defamatory and put Mr. Laurias client at significant risk given the times we live in and the jobs which are being lost. The implied threat to destroy opponents reputations or in the old days break their knees has long been the Chicago Way. The line between a president and a dictator is becoming harder to discern.

    The remarkable thing is that people in positions of influence are strating to speak out against this hostile takeover of our political system, and the potential destruction of our way of life which it portends.

    Lauria is clearly one example of courage in the face of tyranny. It takes courage to speak out against the White House in a matter of this nature. On the other hand, how can he stand idly by and see his client who has done nothing wrong smeared by Mr. Obama and then threatened by his henchman. If he fails to speak out it will be a wrong without a remedy.

    McCarthy is another example. As a highly decorated US Attorney with a proven track record of fighting terrorism, he called the game on Mr. Obamas Attorney General Eric Holder whose main experience with terrorism came from defending multi nationals accused of it. He told Holder that it was a major mistake to free trained jihadists prior to the cessation of hostilities while noting that the terrorist now leading the Taliban in Afghanistan is a freed jihadist. He told Holder it was a catastrophic risk to import those jihadists into this country, where they can commit mass murder. And he told the benighted Attorney General that it was counterproductive to release the torture memos and raise the threat of prosection against Justice Department Attorneys who are trying to render advice under very difficult circumstance where thousands of American lives may hang in the balance. He declined Holders invitation so he could not be used as a pawn in Obamas game.

    There is Mary Ann Glendon who stood up againt the trustees of Notre Dame in the name of religious principles when they tried to invite her to offset the criticism they were getting over inviting Barack Hussein Obama whose views are at cross purposes with the core principles of the Catholic Church. She refused to be a pawn in their game.

    Finally, there is our old friend Jake Tapper whom according to the American Thinker published the Lauria comment at some risk to his livilihood, since Obama has turned the rest of the White House Press Corps into little more than a pack of trained seals eagerly waiting for Obama to throw them the bait while barking his tune. If Tapper stays on it he deserves accolades, especially from someone like me who felt he was little more than a pushover. We shall see if he stays with it.

    In the midst of all the bad news, the defection of Spectre, the widening of our military operations in Afghanistan, the poor handling of the pandemic by Mr. Obama, a few flowers appear. Let this night be over and when day comes let a thousand flowers bloom.

  15. Written by Dr. Jack Wheeler
    Tuesday, 28 April 2009
    ***********
    I don’t know who he is but anyone with a Ph.D. in Philosophy who calls himself Dr. when he is writing about at medical subject is a fraud, IMHO.
    ———————————————-
    SHV: I am sure he is looking beyond his own expertise. If I were to speculate, I would say he is probably getting this from the CIA manual on bioterrorism. But then again, it does sound alot like what Biden was saying the other day. Wheeler gets high marks for referencing Durk and Sandy. They have done some very credible work and have a subtantial following in their particular field. But if I needed a triple bipass I would come to you. If Obama managed to get a second term that will not be an idle threat.

  16. Admin and several of us have been saying this for months. Oderly liquidation rather that trying to make a rock float. But it takes a “legenday investor” to say it before people will listen.
    ———————————————————
    Buffett says most banks aren’t too big to fail
    Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway’s vice chairman Charlie Munger held a news conference Sunday a day after 35,000 attended the company’s annual meeting.

    Buffett offered a glimpse into his holding company’s, Berkshire Hathaway Inc., first-quarter earnings Saturday. But the full details, including the company’s net income, won’t be available until Friday when the company releases its earnings report.

    Buffett said Berkshire will report a roughly 10 percent drop in its first-quarter operating profit next week.

  17. I think we as a nation are about to be set up like nothing ever before. The msm is playing up the deaths from the swine flu. But are we given any stats on those that have died? If they were already severly sick the common cold would h ave killed them. At the threat of an outbeak I cannot understand how my government which takes over banks cannot order a company to provide the vaccination for every one in America, Oops bet I bet bambi to the draw– bet we hear from the white house something about waffles and drug companies and how he got them to do something with profits so that everyone will be innoculated,

  18. Personaly
    I believe Susan Boyle and her unprecedented attention by the mass midea may have spurned the bots to create an aura about bambi, He sold himself on a fucking lie and was the master of the internet then along comes boyle and the world ia enchanted with hope. Egads that bambi’s territory. He is the star. So lets go against all protocal and make a swine flu the major news.

  19. Excellent, Admin.
    I have been reading about this case. i found an astounding analysis of the current status by a poster at NQ and will post it later.
    PLEASE EMBED
    Condoleeza Rice gives the definitive explanation about poilcy post-WTC to a bunch of smarmy snarky college students and cleans their clocks.

    3 w’s dot youtube dot com/watch?v=ijEED_iviTA&eurl

  20. A VERY GOOD MUST READ:

    The President Who Hates His Country

    canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/10784

  21. youtube.com/watch?v=6-3X5hIFXYU
    h stuff and ws

    This is how Musliums are going to take over the world without firing a shot, do to the shrinking birth rates in most developed countrys, and the explosion of musliums in those countries. On a return trip to London, I had noticed a big difference, and in Washington D.C. I have also.

    They quote some states that are interesting. This is making the email rounds.

  22. Here is the explanation about the issue administration discusses in the thread from a lawyer/poster at NQ.
    It’s in layman’s terms that even I can understand.
    What do you think?

    ‘In lay terms, what Attorney Lauria alleges in this interview, is that one of his 3 clients, an investment fund that acts as fiduciary to investors like teacher credit unions, invested in Chrysler, with the knowledge that, under the law, should the company declare bankruptcy, these clients would be the first to receive back the initial amount of their investment, at a rate of 100 cents on the dollar. But, when the government took over Chrysler, BO said to these 3 “1st tier” investors, ‘You will take less than that or, nothing. We will pay off lower tier investors, first. And, in addition, if you refuse to meet our terms, we will engage the White House press corps to ruin your reputation.’ (Evidently, the 3 investment funds agreed to reduce their lawful rate of return but, not to a level low enough to mollify the White House.) Attorney Lauria initiated a court suit, on behalf of his 3 clients, to stop this forced taking – one of his clients acquiesced to the pressure from BO, leaving 2 clients – arguing what he called Constitutional issues. 1) His clients had the right to privately contract, the terms of which contract must be judicially enforced; and 2) the court – the judicial branch of government – has the right to oversee bankruptcy cases, without forced intervention from the President – the executive branch of government.

    Having just begun to look into this issue, I am not certain yet whether Attorney Lauria is also arguing that, by extorting private contractors to give up property in this way, the government is effecting a taking without due process, in violation of the Constitution. I am also unclear on whether he intends to report this threat involving the White House press corps, to the DA.

  23. A Wind Blows Against The Political Spectrum

    americanthinker.com/2009/05/a_wind_blows_against_the_polit.html

    Those who plot people and issues along the political spectrum of left, right, and in-between may be late to perceive a new wind blowing from outside their perspective.

    It blows invisibly, this wind. We can’t see it, only what it occasionally stirs up. It’s gaining velocity across the nation. When it blows hard enough, it will move The Spectrum.

    Big media plots politics and politicians along The Spectrum. That’s all they know. It’s how they think. How they entertain. Sell ads. In their delivery, they imitate the characters of courtroom theater. Prosecution v Defense leads to Jury decision. Mostly, they play one role or the other, prosecutor or defense attorney, depending on how they feel about the politician or the issue.

    Politicians, on the other hand, are scripted to argue opposite sides, rail at each other, then tootle off arm-in-arm to dine. Their verbal sparing represents their respective clients. No hard feelings. A day later they can deliver unctuous introductions for each other.

    Ideologues flourish in the big media, particularly liberal ones. Once, they were somewhat circumspect about revealing their hard feelings under the guise of hard news. Now, their adversarial behaviors are scripted elements of news as entertainment, or vise versa.

    A laughing Anderson Cooper makes a disparaging, double entendre comment (”tea bagging”) about citizens at the Tea Parties. A CNN no-name reporter argues condescendingly with a Tea Party man holding his child because he doesn’t, she says, understand the tax break he’s getting. Almost imperceptibly, the wind picks up speed.

    ABC News says that Peter Schiff and others who, from “way outside the economic mainstream,” make dire economic predictions are dealing in “pessimism porn.” “Why would anybody actually read pessimism porn?” the ABC commentator asks.

    Why would he even ask that question? Because what he calls “pessimism porn” doesn’t fall within his definition of “mainstream.” His name is Legion, for there are many like him.

    In the big media, everything is politicized. Economics, education, business, sport, art, music, energy, sex, birth, parenting, religion, food, health, weather. They’re all pre-plotted along the standard frame of reference for all of life: The Spectrum.

    So from FOX we get the signature format of battling talking-heads shouting at each other, a fair and balanced format populated by the fairly unbalanced.

    On CBS we watch groupthink panel discussions — live chat rooms for the commonly persuaded. The most popular transition from one expert to another is “Yes, and furthermore…”

    MSNBC offer us a steady diet of vitriolic sarcasm dished out by acidic critics.

    None know it, but collectively they’re chipping away at The Spectrum. I say, chip away.

    For many, big business was once a counter balance to The Spectrum. Business executives were the Captains of Industry. Steely-eyed capitalists who focused on profit. When their behavior got out of line, government regulators reeled them in. True or not, that’s what many thought. Not any more.

    According to a recent Rasmussen poll:

    “…70% of U.S. voters believe that big business and big government generally work together against the interests of investors and consumers, according to Rasmussen Reports surveying. Just 14% disagree with the assessment, and 17% are not sure.”

    In the public game show version of “Who Do You Trust,” increasingly the chosen answer is: D. None of the above.

    Too many Captains of Industry have become political Lieutenants. Take General Electric’s Jeffrey Immelt. A recent GE shareholders meeting stirred up a gale force wind of discontent among investors who see a dangerous nexus between big government, big business and big media, one that works against their best interests.

    Meanwhile, much about political theater no longer entertains us.

    Congressional committees spank big bankers before the cameras. Then, afterward, slap backs and shake hands, gladly accepting pledges of further campaign contributions. We take note of this, and the wind grows stronger.

    Barack Obama’s campaign was built on the promise of a whole new spectrum, different from the old one. One with no red states, and no blue states, only the United States. The pitch worked and captured a powerful gust of the wind.

    Ross Perot once tapped into the same discontent, but from outside the two-parties. He eventually disappointed his followers. Likewise, Obama’s support will eventually hemorrhage as the future brings change for which many of his followers did neither hope, nor vote.

    When that happens, we’ll hear the wind blow louder over the annoying background noise of continuous campaigning. Campaigning without end, only an election pause.

    Most of us are not partisans. Our main skin-in-the-game is our own skin, and that of our loved ones. Plus our over-arching love of country.

    Frustrated, we lust after a third party in our hearts, but in our minds we know that won’t happen, at least anytime soon. And even if it happened tomorrow, there’s no guarantee anything would improve.

    For now, we’re trapped. Like an audience chained to its seats, we’re forced to watch constant, and consistently bad, political theater. An opera where the actors sing off-tune. The words don’t match the action. The plot is muddled. And a tone deaf orchestra without talent plays off beat.

    So we wonder. What will be the tipping point that inevitably alters The Spectrum?

    Meanwhile, in the words of George Orwell, “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”
    ********************************************
    …..Meanwhile, in the words of George Orwell, “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”….Really says it all

    AmericanThinker

  24. NewMexicoFan Says:

    May 4th, 2009 at 9:18 am
    youtube.com/watch?v=6-3X5hIFXYU
    h stuff and ws

    This is how Musliums are going to take over the world without firing a shot,
    **************************************************

    I have a;ways thought that!

  25. The upcoming showdown with Bibi will be quite uncomfortable for those who support Israel. With BO’s affinity for Muslim dictators, and his 20 plus yrs associating with anti-Israel figures like Wright and Farakah, this will be a very coldl period b/t the US and Israel. The question is does Israel take a chance and wait it out, or do what Begin did, and say fuck you to world opinion, and protect the Jewish State, with or without our assistance. My bet is Israel acts if the Iranian program is not stopped within 8 months.

  26. gonzotx Says:

    May 4th, 2009 at 10:14 am
    I can’t believe the Dow is up 158, this can’t be real.
    &&&&&&&&&

    If you’re worried that it will make Obama “look good”, well, he may try to play that game where he claims validation for his plans when the market is good, but dismisses it as “market fluctuations that have nothing to do with me” when it craters. But it won’t work because of the hypocrisy of claiming credit only when it goes up.

    Has Obama already taken credit for Mine That Bird pulling off his Kentucky Derby win?

  27. AmericanGal Says:

    May 4th, 2009 at 1:12 am
    &&&&&&&&&&

    AmeriGal, thanks for that link. Totally worth posting here for the gang.

    The things you don’t read about Barack Obama
    =================================

    Sat. May 2 – 5:46 AM

    Will Rogers famously pleaded that all he knew was what he read in the papers. If all a person knew of Barack Obama’s first 100 days as president was what they read of them in this newspaper, it would seem to be a very charmed young presidency.

    The Chronicle Herald recently made space for an urgent Associated Press dispatch from Washington informing readers the Obamas had chosen a Portuguese water dog. Not original reporting, of course, but an AP rephrasing of a White House-arranged scoop in the Washington Post online.

    That was followed by a crack Canadian Press report, drawn from such gumshoe news-gathering as reading the Huffington Post, on the “hillbilly” Republican governor of Alaska: her “family and political theatrics that would do Jerry Springer proud,” like “the arrest and indictment of her sister-in-law on break-and-enter charges” and “the sordid revelations of her daughter’s ex-boyfriend.”

    The Portuguese water dog and Alaskan “hillbillies” news beats apparently leave little time for anything remotely skeptical of the president of the United States. And they wonder why folks aren’t buying the papers like they used to.

    So here is a small selection of news on the most powerful man on Earth which has been deemed unfit to print:

    •Obama’s first two major bills alone, the “stimulus” and “omnibus,” cost nearly twice as much as was spent on Iraq over six years – $1.2 trillion vs. $650 billion.

    •Obama abandoned his campaign promise of “a net spending cut,” his first annual deficit – not counting bailouts – being three times the worst deficit under President George W. Bush.

    •Obama’s objective in his first G20 summit – commitments to spend our way to prosperity with massive stimulus boondoggles across the G20 – was rejected out of hand.

    •Obama’s objective in his first NATO summit – commitments to combat troops for Afghanistan from “our European allies,” which Obama and his party imagined were ready and willing to fight if only someone “enlightened” like him were running things – was predictably refused, with some more European non-combat contingents offered as a token.

    •Obama’s Defence Department announced cuts of $1.4 billion to missile defence, the day after North Korea test-fired its long-range, multi-stage ballistic missile.

    •Obama’s economics were criticized by Warren Buffet, whose endorsement had been candidate Obama’s highest economic credential.

    •Obama reversed the free trade Bush policy that had allowed about 100 Mexican tractor-trailers into the United States, which the Mexican government immediately used as an excuse to levy tariffs on 90 American goods amounting to $2.4 billion in U.S. exports.

    •Obama’s “tax cuts for 95 per cent” turned out to mean $13 a week from June to December, to be clawed back to $8 a week in January – as compared with President Bush’s 2008 tax rebates of $600 to $1,200 plus $300 per child, which were notably scoffed at during the election campaign by Michelle Obama.

    •Obama’s campaign promise of a $3,000-per-employee tax credit for businesses that hired new workers – repeated ad nauseam for weeks before the election – was discreetly retired even before inauguration day.

    •Obama abandoned his campaign promise that “lobbyists won’t work in my White House,” waiving his no-lobbyist executive order or conveniently redefining his appointees’ past lobbying work to allow 30 lobbyists into his administration.

    •Obama abandoned his campaign promise to reform earmarks, signing the omnibus bill which contained 8,816 of them.

    •Obama took more money from AIG than any other politician in 2008 – over $100,000 – and signed into law the provision guaranteeing the AIG bonuses which later had him in front of the cameras “shaking with outrage” and siccing the pitchfork crowd on law-abiding citizens who had fulfilled their end of a contract and had their payment upheld by Obama’s own legislation.

    Why should these points, and many more like them, have to be made by some obscure contributor to The Chronicle Herald’s opinion pages?

    Fox News Channel is the butt of jokes and the target of attacks like no other media outlet in the English-speaking world, not least by people who fancy themselves the guardians of a free press. But Fox News is today the lone television news service in the English-speaking world capable of serious skepticism and scrutiny of the sitting president and the Congress of the United States.

    Fox News is also the second most-watched channel in all American cable television. It long ago became by far the most-watched cable news channel; more Americans watched Fox News than CNN and MSNBC combined in every time slot from 6 a.m. to midnight in April. Now, while The New York Times is $1.3 billion in debt, Fox has expanded its operations with a business channel and a juggernaut Internet presence.

    There’s a lesson there, though Fox News will be just as well pleased if the impeccably “mainstream” news business remains clueless about it.

    The people need a Fourth Estate, not yet another adulator of Barack Obama, yet another smearer of Sarah Palin, yet another patrician editor to keep out anything disagreeable to progressive sensibilities, yet another laptop-and-latte journalism-schooler to spit on everything pre-dating 1968. And they wonder why the news business has come on hard times.

    &&&
    Andrew W. Smith, from Cape Sable Island, N.S., writes and resides in Tulsa, Okla.

  28. rgb44hrc

    Don’t think he has taken credit for Mine That Bird, as NM went for HRC (the South went big for her and that is where Sunland Park is and where this horse trained), and they are still mad about that. The local news are also saying they are dragging their feet on the BR scandal, so that it will just go away (could there be a statue of limitation here? Not sure but I saw that mentioned).

  29. Got the link @bitterpolitiz

    May 4, 2009 – Ridge Trails Pennsylvania’s Specter By 3 Points, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; New Democratic Senator Tops Toomey By 20 Points

    Newly-minted Democratic Sen. Arlen Specter would whip old Republican rival Pat Toomey 53 – 33 percent if the 2010 Pennsylvania U.S. Senate race were held today, but if popular former Gov. Tom Ridge becomes the Republican candidate, he trails Specter by just 46 – 43 percent, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

    Independent voters, who back Sen. Specter over Toomey 45 – 36 percent, switch to Ridge 47 – 37 percent if he becomes a candidate. The former Republican Governor also gets 14 percent of the Democratic vote, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University poll finds.

    In the Specter-Toomey matchup, Republicans back Toomey 74 – 18 percent while Democrats go with their new convert 85 – 4 percent. Men back Specter 47 – 41 percent, as do women 59 – 26 percent. Union households go Democratic 62 – 27 percent.

    In a Specter-Ridge face-off, Republicans go with Ridge 82 – 10 percent, while Specter takes Democrats 78 – 14 percent. Men shift to Ridge 50 – 41 percent, while women remain Democratic 51 – 37 percent. Union households back Specter 57 – 34 percent.

    “A former Republican Senator running as a Democrat against a popular former Republican governor seeking to make a political comeback would be a battle royal in Pennsylvania,” said Clay F. Richards, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

    “Gov. Tom Ridge is probably the only political figure in Pennsylvania who could give Sen. Arlen Specter a run for his money. But even if he gets a strong challenge from a Republican, Specter is still better off for having changed parties because he seemed headed to certain defeat had he stayed a Republican and faced Toomey in a primary.

    “Ridge is popular, but Specter is now lined up with the powerful Democratic machine run by Gov. Ed Rendell and can count on a popular President Barack Obama coming to campaign for him if needed. Significantly, Specter leads both Toomey and Ridge by more than 20 points among union households even though the Senator says he will vote against the most important labor legislation in Congress this year,” Richards added.

    Pennsylvania voters approve 56 – 36 percent, including 81 – 10 percent among Democrats, of the job Specter is doing. By a 52 – 34 percent margin, voters have a favorable opinion of Specter. Toomey gets a 20 – 13 percent favorability, but 67 percent don’t know enough about him to form an opinion. Ridge gets a 55 – 19 percent favorability.

    Voters say 49 – 41 percent that Specter deserves to be reelected and say 60 – 37 percent that he is not too old to serve another six-year U.S. Senate term. Even voters 18 to 34 years old say 67 – 31 percent that Specter is not too old.

    Because Specter opposes the pro-union Employee Free Choice Act, 23 percent of voters are less likely to vote for him, while 14 percent are more likely and 60 percent say this will not affect their vote. There is little difference from the overall totals among union households.

    Even though voters approve 66 – 29 percent of the job President Barack Obama is doing, they say 52 – 44 percent that the Democratic dominance in the Senate is “dangerous” because President Obama and the Democrats would be able to steamroll over Republicans.

  30. Edwards Confirms Inquiry Into Finances

    May 3, 2009
    Richard Perry

    RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — His once-prominent political career is buried and the turmoil of his marriage is playing out in public. Now, John Edwards is facing a federal inquiry. The two-time Democratic presidential candidate acknowledged Sunday that investigators are assessing how he spent his campaign funds — a subject that could carry his extramarital affair from the tabloids to the courtroom. Edwards’ political action committee paid more than $100,000 for video production to the firm of the woman with whom Edwards had an affair.

    The former North Carolina senator said in a carefully worded statement that he is cooperating. ”I am confident that no funds from my campaign were used improperly,” Edwards said in the statement. ”However, I know that it is the role of government to ensure that this is true. We have made available to the United States both the people and the information necessary to help them get the issue resolved efficiently and in a timely matter.” While Edwards focused his comment on campaign funds, he also had a range of other fundraising organizations — including two nonprofits and a poverty center at his alma mater — that have come under scrutiny.

    Chief among them was the PAC that paid Rielle Hunter’s company for several months in 2006 for Web videos that documented Edwards’ travels and advocacy in the months leading up to his 2008 presidential campaign. The committee also paid her firm an additional $14,086.50 on April 1, 2007. Edwards acknowledged the affair with Hunter last year, months after dropping his presidential bid. At the time of the 2007 payment, the PAC only had $7,932.95 in cash on hand, according to records filed with the Federal Election Commission. That day, according to the records, Edwards’ presidential campaign paid the PAC $14,034.61 for what is listed as a ”furniture purchase.”

    Willfully converting money from a political action committee for personal use is a federal crime. The furniture money was one of just five contributions to the political action committee between April 1 to June 30, 2007. The other four were on June 30, the last day of the reporting period, including a $3,000 contribution from the wife of Edwards’ finance chairman, Fred Baron. Baron, Edwards’ national finance chairman and a wealthy Dallas-based trial attorney, said last year that he quietly began sending money to Hunter to resettle in California. He said no campaign funds were used and that Hunter was not working for the campaign when he started giving her money. Edwards has said he was unaware of the payments. Baron died of cancer in October.

    U.S. Attorney George Holding has declined to comment and said he won’t confirm or deny an investigation.

    Kate Michelman, a former head of the abortion-rights group NARAL who advised the Edwards campaign, said she hopes there was no wrongdoing. ”All of us remain very saddened by what has happened to John, because he was right on the policies,” Michelman said Sunday. ”It remains a very sad occurrence for all of us. It’s sad for John and Elizabeth, and this is just one more problem for them to deal with.”

    Edwards, 55, powered onto the national scene in 1998, when he won a seat for the U.S. Senate in his first political campaign. With smooth speech and good looks, the former trial lawyer ran for the White House in 2004 and was tapped as Sen. John Kerry’s running mate. He returned to the campaign trail in a 2008 presidential bid but was largely overshadowed by a duel between Hillary Clinton, vying to be the first female president, and Barack Obama, who did become the first black president.

    Since announcing the affair, Edwards has remained largely secluded, and he canceled all his public appearances before the November election because he said he didn’t want to be a distraction for Obama. His wife, Elizabeth, who is terminally ill with cancer, will soon be releasing a book talking about the affair. In it, she writes that news of the affair made her vomit. She also describes Hunter as ”pathetic.”

    nytimes.com/aponline/2009/05/03/us/AP-US-Edwards-Affair.html?ref=politics

  31. Nunc pro tunc (then as now)???

    I found it on one of the sites, and although I am not willing to take the full leap . . yet, I do believe the warning here is real and must therefore be taken seriously.

    The one thing I am relatively certain of is the confluence of Mr. Obama’s inflamed ego + the unchecked power he has been given + the powers he will arrogate unto himself through overreaching and the expansion of executive power + his ambivalent feelings towards this country + the crises we are likely to face in the days, weeks and months ahead do spell trouble–trouble with a capital T.

    Whether or not that trouble can be fairly characterized as treason however remains to be seen. So does the damage he will do to our country along the way. Only an ignorant uninformed fool would be blind, deaf and indifferent to the risks which are now in play.
    —————————————————————
    “A nation can survive its’ fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and he carries his banners openly. But the traitor moves among those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the galleys, heard in the very hall of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor–He speaks in the accents familiar to his victims, and wears their face and their garment, and he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation–he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of a city–he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to be feared.”Cicero, 42 B.C., Roman Statesman, orator, and author.

  32. jbstonesfan Says:

    May 4th, 2009 at 10:44 am
    The upcoming showdown with Bibi will be quite uncomfortable for those who support Israel. With BO’s affinity for Muslim dictators, and his 20 plus yrs associating with anti-Israel figures like Wright and Farakah, this will be a very coldl period b/t the US and Israel. The question is does Israel take a chance and wait it out, or do what Begin did, and say fuck you to world opinion, and protect the Jewish State, with or without our assistance. My bet is Israel acts if the Iranian program is not stopped within 8 months.

    ————————————-

    The problem here is bambi’s ego. He can’t be “told” he is wrong and he can’t be “told” to back off. He thinks he is the almighty. Bibi wants a time limit placed on bambi’s diplomatic “talks” with Iran he also wants to see economic sanctions in place when things go wrong. He doesn’t want “open-ended” talks that will only give Iran more opportunity to build up its nuclear arsenal in the meantime.

    I can’t see obama backing down and I can’t see Bibi doing it either. In my humble opinion, Bibi will be just as strong or even stronger than Begin in protecting Israel. If he can’t rely on obama to do the right thing, then he must go it alone, as you have said, for the sake of the Jewish State.

  33. There was a link a few posts back but here are the highlights

    Obama Needs Clintonomics — and Soon
    By: Christopher Ruddy

    CIA Director Leon Panetta has some urgent advice for President Obama: Read “Clintonomics” and use it!

    Panetta’s advice is no secret. He is referring to a new book just out, “Clintonomics: How Bill Clinton Reengineered the Reagan Revolution,” (AMACOM) by Dr. Jack Godwin, a political scientist.

    [Editor’s Note: Get “Clintonomics” at Amazon.com. Go Here Now.]

    Here’s what Panetta said about “Clintonomics”: “This book is a must read for those struggling to figure out the present economic crisis.”

    As we all know, Obama is one of those struggling.

    Before Panetta assumed his CIA post, he had served as President Bill Clinton’s chief of staff. Panetta is a pragmatic man, not an ideologue.

    So his praise for this new book should come as no surprise.

    But what is surprising is that, as a Republican of the Reagan type, I couldn’t agree more with Panetta’s assessment.

    Author Godwin’s basic point is that, contrary to widely held opinion, Clinton did not seek to turn back the economic policies of Ronald Reagan, dubbed “Reaganomics.” Instead, he embraced them and perfected them.

    Godwin’s point of view is even more interesting because he served in the Clinton administration as deputy secretary of the Department of Interior.

    When Clinton came to office in 1993, the economy was in a downturn.

    “Clinton attributed the country’s less than optimum economic performance to low productivity, low growth, stagnant wages, unemployment, budget deficits, and high healthcare costs, among other things,” Godwin observes.

    “He outlined the essential components of his economic plan: shifting our emphasis from consumption to investment; making public policy friendlier to workers and families; reducing the federal deficit and cutting government waste; reforming the tax code; and, of course, creating jobs.”

    Clinton, in short, sought to put a happy face on Reaganomics. [Godwin points out that Reagan himself disliked the characterization that it sounded like an “aerobic exercise or fad diet.”]

    Reagan strongly believed that “government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.” Though Clinton did not agree with that view, he did believe that government needed to be both improved and downsized.

    Both Clinton and Reagan grasped the notion that the private sector, not the public one, is the primary productive engine of the economy.

    Thus Clinton offered a “New Covenant,” which Godwin writes “was indeed based on an old idea — the idea that with opportunity comes responsibility. Clinton wanted to create a leaner, not meaner government . . . In practice, this meant downsizing the federal government, cutting unnecessary and wasteful spending, and bringing down the deficit.”

    I can hear the Gipper applauding Clinton’s sentiment.

    Clinton is even quoted as saying that he was “the man who downsized the government more than President Reagan did.” This is true.

    Democrats have long complained that Reagan gave us huge budget deficits and grew the national debt dramatically.

    This also is true.

    Some on the left even saw a conspiratorial overtone to the Reagan deficits. Reagan ran up huge deficits to prevent the Democrats from funding new entitlement programs, so the theory went.

    Although Reagan did run up the national debt wildly, it had nothing to do with entitlements. Reagan repeatedly stated, before and after his election in 1980, that he would opt for large deficits if he needed them to bankroll his military buildup to counter the Soviet Union.

    Indeed, Reagan’s plan worked. The massive military buildup not only helped defeat the Soviet empire but also left the U.S. a sizable “peace dividend” in the 90s.

    Ronald Reagan set the stage for Bill Clinton. Clinton’s brilliance was in realizing the gift he had received from the Reagan years. He easily could have moved to shift the “peace dividend” from declining defense expenditures to social programs. But he didn’t.

    Instead, he reduced the growth of government, ultimately leaving his successor, George W. Bush, a budget surplus.

    When Clinton came into office, he tinkered with nationalizing healthcare with the so-called “Hillarycare” program. But Congress thwarted his plans.

    It was the best thing that ever happened to Clinton. After the healthcare debacle, he moved to the center. He adopted a bipartisan approach and even worked with Newt Gingrich in some areas, including welfare reform and cutting the capital gains tax.

    “Bill Clinton launched his campaign to end welfare as we know it because he . . . believed millions of people were trapped in the system,” Godwin notes.

    “When Clinton signed welfare reform legislation in 1996, he passed the greatest test of federalism, according to the standard set by Ronald Reagan himself.”

    Clinton argued that entitlement programs do not work if the government does not require something in return from the recipient. He often referred to “the politics of entitlement” as a way of criticizing his own party.

    “Some, but not all, in the national Democratic Party have placed too much faith in the whole politics of entitlement, the idea that big bureaucracies and government spending, demanding nothing in return, can produce the results we want,” he said in a speech.

    “We know that is simply not true. There is a limit to how much government can do in the absence of an appropriate response by the American people at the grass-roots level.”

    Clinton’s approach is starkly different from President Obama’s. With strong majorities in the House and the Senate, Obama has brushed aside a bipartisanship approach. And unlike Clinton, he clearly favors the public sector over the private sector in restoring economic growth.

    As Godwin says, Clinton’s governing philosophy was the logical corollary to the Reagan Revolution, stressing fiscal discipline and the end of big government.

    “In public, Clinton positioned his governing philosophy as the antidote to Reaganomics,” Godwin writes. “In fact, Clinton and Reagan are fellow travelers separated more by party affiliation than political ideology.”

    Barack Obama does have something to learn from Bill Clinton and “Clintonomics.”

    Many Republicans have been reevaluating the Clinton years and realizing, as I have, that the country prospered under a more centrist approach. Obama should take the advice of his CIA director

  34. Gonzo: Tom Ridge is a good guy. He is not real colorful but neither is Judas Spectre. Years ago Spectre was ties politically to some bad people in the labor relations community in Philadelphia and although those people have since gone on the their just rewards their successores are still there–I assume. It will be the same pattern as we have seen so often. Spectre will win the cities and Ridge will win the rural areas. For Hillary against the Fraud that was enough. As I recall Ridge was a marine and a company commander in Viet Nam. I met him in his younger days but even then he wore a hearing aid–most likely a war injury. Our nation was much safer when he was Director of Homeland Security than we are under the benighted Janet Nepolitano, who lacks the background and temperment for the job. The biggest tragedy for the country in Spectres defection however is it blocks Admiral Joe Sesatak from running for that position. He is one of the most impressive people in politics, a great American and a strong Hillary supporter. That is most unfortunate for our country.

  35. ANOTHER KRUGMAN WORTH READING

    Apparently obama’s half measures may not be good enough…

    nytimes.com/2009/05/04/opinion/04krugman.html

    Falling Wage Syndrome
    =================

    By PAUL KRUGMAN
    Published: May 3, 2009

    Wages are falling all across America.

    Some of the wage cuts, like the givebacks by Chrysler workers, are the price of federal aid. Others, like the tentative agreement on a salary cut here at The Times, are the result of discussions between employers and their union employees. Still others reflect the brute fact of a weak labor market: workers don’t dare protest when their wages are cut, because they don’t think they can find other jobs.

    Whatever the specifics, however, falling wages are a symptom of a sick economy. And they’re a symptom that can make the economy even sicker.

    First things first: anecdotes about falling wages are proliferating, but how broad is the phenomenon? The answer is, very.

    It’s true that many workers are still getting pay increases. But there are enough pay cuts out there that, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average cost of employing workers in the private sector rose only two-tenths of a percent in the first quarter of this year — the lowest increase on record. Since the job market is still getting worse, it wouldn’t be at all surprising if overall wages started falling later this year.

    But why is that a bad thing? After all, many workers are accepting pay cuts in order to save jobs. What’s wrong with that?

    The answer lies in one of those paradoxes that plague our economy right now. We’re suffering from the paradox of thrift: saving is a virtue, but when everyone tries to sharply increase saving at the same time, the effect is a depressed economy. We’re suffering from the paradox of deleveraging: reducing debt and cleaning up balance sheets is good, but when everyone tries to sell off assets and pay down debt at the same time, the result is a financial crisis.

    And soon we may be facing the paradox of wages: workers at any one company can help save their jobs by accepting lower wages, but when employers across the economy cut wages at the same time, the result is higher unemployment.

    Here’s how the paradox works. Suppose that workers at the XYZ Corporation accept a pay cut. That lets XYZ management cut prices, making its products more competitive. Sales rise, and more workers can keep their jobs. So you might think that wage cuts raise employment — which they do at the level of the individual employer.

    But if everyone takes a pay cut, nobody gains a competitive advantage. So there’s no benefit to the economy from lower wages. Meanwhile, the fall in wages can worsen the economy’s problems on other fronts.

    In particular, falling wages, and hence falling incomes, worsen the problem of excessive debt: your monthly mortgage payments don’t go down with your paycheck. America came into this crisis with household debt as a percentage of income at its highest level since the 1930s. Families are trying to work that debt down by saving more than they have in a decade — but as wages fall, they’re chasing a moving target. And the rising burden of debt will put downward pressure on consumer spending, keeping the economy depressed.

    Things get even worse if businesses and consumers expect wages to fall further in the future. John Maynard Keynes put it clearly, more than 70 years ago: “The effect of an expectation that wages are going to sag by, say, 2 percent in the coming year will be roughly equivalent to the effect of a rise of 2 percent in the amount of interest payable for the same period.” And a rise in the effective interest rate is the last thing this economy needs.

    Concern about falling wages isn’t just theory. Japan — where private-sector wages fell an average of more than 1 percent a year from 1997 to 2003 — is an object lesson in how wage deflation can contribute to economic stagnation.

    So what should we conclude from the growing evidence of sagging wages in America? Mainly that stabilizing the economy isn’t enough: we need a real recovery.

    There has been a lot of talk lately about green shoots and all that, and there are indeed indications that the economic plunge that began last fall may be leveling off. The National Bureau of Economic Research might even declare the recession over later this year.

    But the unemployment rate is almost certainly still rising. And all signs point to a terrible job market for many months if not years to come — which is a recipe for continuing wage cuts, which will in turn keep the economy weak.

    To break that vicious circle, we basically need more: more stimulus, more decisive action on the banks, more job creation.

    Credit where credit is due: President Obama and his economic advisers seem to have steered the economy away from the abyss. But the risk that America will turn into Japan — that we’ll face years of deflation and stagnation — seems, if anything, to be rising.

  36. It is surrealistic to see a right wing hack like Ruddy giving unsolicited advice to the Great Enchanter. On the other hand, if the devil can quote scripture then I guess Ruddy can quote Clinton.

  37. I can’t see obama backing down and I can’t see Bibi doing it either. In my humble opinion, Bibi will be just as strong or even stronger than Begin in protecting Israel. If he can’t rely on obama to do the right thing, then he must go it alone, as you have said, for the sake of the Jewish State.
    ————–
    Bibi is a bear. Obama is a serpent.

  38. rgb: that has been Krugmans position all along–to little. When he says that the fraud has steered the economy away from the abyss however he needs to be more explicit what he means. I think that statement is highly debateable on a number of levels. The reality of a prolonged L shaped recovery is what he is really talking about here but how long and how often will the people of this country sit still for this endless cyle of robbing Peter to pay Paul, when Paul has either caused the crisis (as is true with the banks), or exercised poor economic choices which will now be subsidized (mortage holders who got in over their head). I think the patience of the American People is very finite in this respect, and an L shaped recovery is very bad for Mr Obama.

  39. The biggest tragedy for the country in Spectres defection however is it blocks Admiral Joe Sesatak
    ************************************************

    He was going to run as Dem?

  40. But why is that a bad thing? After all, many workers are accepting pay cuts in order to save jobs. What’s wrong with that?

    The answer lies in one of those paradoxes that plague our economy right now. We’re suffering from the paradox of thrift: saving is a virtue, but when everyone tries to sharply increase saving at the same time, the effect is a depressed economy. We’re suffering from the paradox of deleveraging: reducing debt and cleaning up balance sheets is good, but when everyone tries to sell off assets and pay down debt at the same time, the result is a financial crisis.
    ********************************************

    This wasn’t a problem in my youth. We were THE manufacturing giant of the World. I will never forget Bush coming out after 9/11 and telling the American people that the way we could help is go shop. My mouth dropped. How far we had fallen.

    How about reversing the insanity and allow manufacturing to be King again? Create jobs. Pay honest wages. I for one would be willing to pay more for a stronger America. I often don’t buy goods from countries I know that are paying slave wages. The Barbarian’s will never let this happen i am afraid, it is all part of the plan and our greed , our leaders greed allowed this to happen, we are a paper dragon.

  41. The biggest tragedy for the country in Spectres defection however is it blocks Admiral Joe Sesatak
    *************
    I think Joe Sestak will run and beat piece of crap Specter in the Dem primary..(fingers crossed) I sent his campaign money for the 2006 campaign against the total nut job Curt Weldon and they still send me updates on his activities. ”
    “Subsequently, Sestak has further widened the door to a primary challenge. He has been “playing phone tag” over the past few days with DSCC Chair Bob Menendez. Further, Sestak “feels strongly” that Democratic voters in Pennsylvania, not Washington dealmakers, should decide who the nominee will be. Click here for video of Sestak on MSNBC’s Morning Joe this morning; and click here for audio of Sestak on The Bill Press Show.

    Second, can Sestak put together and finance a credible campaign, even with Ed Rendell pushing Pennsylvania Democrats toward Specter? Yes. At the end of March, Sestak had a bankroll in excess of $3.3 million. Just pulling an estimate out of the air, Sestak might only need $5 million for the primary, so he’s two-thirds of the way there already.

    Third, would his politics be an upgrade over Specter? According to the National Journal’s 2008 Vote Ratings, Congressman Sestak was the 150th most liberal member and the 277th most conservative member. He also has a Progressive Punch score of 93.25. By no means is Sestak a liberal – but he’s very solid. Further, he brings a powerful profile: the highest-ranking former military officer to serve in Congress who happens to also be leading the charge on revoking Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Sestak is 100% pro-choice, has enjoyed big support from labor, and gets high marks on middle class issues.

  42. SHV Says:

    May 4th, 2009 at 12:09 pm

    ********************************

    Don’t know much of, but @ this point we don’t need anymore Dems in Congress voting lock step.Another time I would be thrilled to have someone of his persuasions.

  43. wbboei Says:

    May 4th, 2009 at 11:55 am
    rgb: that has been Krugmans position all along–to little. When he says that the fraud has steered the economy away from the abyss however he needs to be more explicit what he means. I think that statement is highly debateable on a number of levels. The reality of a prolonged L shaped recovery is what he is really talking about here but how long and how often will the people of this country sit still for this endless cyle of robbing Peter to pay Paul, when Paul has either caused the crisis (as is true with the banks), or exercised poor economic choices which will now be subsidized (mortage holders who got in over their head). I think the patience of the American People is very finite in this respect, and an L shaped recovery is very bad for Mr Obama.
    &&&&&&&&

    L-shaped recovery, obama’s “bounce” from his stimulus has the bounce of a squash ball, not a raquet ball. (If you’ve never seen a squash ball, it has about the same bounce as a ham sandwich).

    Bill Clinton’s bounce, on the other hand, was a “SuperBall”.

  44. [In the 90s, Bill ] Clinton argued that entitlement programs do not work if the government does not require something in return from the recipient. He often referred to “the politics of entitlement” as a way of criticizing his own party.

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

    I’m sure Bill had a good reason for using the word ‘entitlement’ in that way at that time. However it is now being used to condemn programs such as Social Security where the recipients really ARE entitled, having already paid in their share.

    And note that Bill’s way of getting the recipients to do their part was to first empower them — by giving them childcare, education, etc.

  45. I will never forget Bush coming out after 9/11 and telling the American people that the way we could help is go shop.

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

    Worse, some people believed it!

  46. RGB: Obamaeconomics is the “dead cat bounce”. Not at all the 1.2 contraction this year and the 3.1 expansion his incompetent Robert MacNamara like budget director projects: From Wikopedia:

    “A dead cat bounce is a figurative term used by traders in the finance industry to describe a pattern wherein a spectacular decline in the price of a stock is immediately followed by a moderate and temporary rise before resuming its downward movement, with the connotation that the rise was not an indication of improving circumstances in the fundamentals of the stock. It is derived from the notion that “even a dead cat will bounce if it falls from a great height”.

  47. Sick Clinton cancels appointments

    4 May 2009

    WASHINGTON: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton canceled her appointments Monday laid low by her allergies, an official said, stressing she was
    not suffering from swine flu.

    “She does not have the flu, just a bit under the weather,” said State Department spokesman Robert Wood. “She will be back tomorrow. She is suffering from allergies.”

    Clinton had been due to meet with Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt as well as his Armenian counterpart Edouard Nalbandian. Both meetings have been rescheduled for Tuesday.

    The US top diplomat traveled to Mexico, the epicenter of the swine flu outbreak, in late March. And the White House said last week that one member of a delegation which accompanied President Barack Obama to Mexico last month had caught the A (H1N1) virus, but had recovered. According to official US figures, there are 226 confirmed cases of swine flu across more than half of the nation’s 50 states.

    timesofindia.indiatimes.com/US/Sick-Clinton-cancels-appointments/articleshow/4483490.cms

  48. NBC’s Mitchell Hails Hillary Clinton As a ‘Foreign Policy Superstar!’

    By Geoffrey Dickens
    May 4, 2009

    In a piece that could’ve been crafted by Hillary Clinton’s PR shop, NBC’s Andrea Mitchell, on Monday’s “Today” show, gushed on and on about the Secretary of State’s new “role of a lifetime,” as a “a foreign policy superstar,” and cheered Clinton has the “highest approval ratings of any time in her career.”

    Mitchell’s theme throughout her story was that the “anger of the primaries,” between Clinton and Barack Obama was long gone and that in her role of Secretary of State she has proven to be a “key asset to Team Obama,” as “Today” co-anchor Matt Lauer observed in the intro. There wasn’t a hint of skepticism or negative note in the story as Mitchell threw in soundbites from John Podesta, Joe Klein and presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin who chimed: “She seems to be really enjoying herself, as does he.”

    The following is a complete transcript of the segment as it was aired on the May 4, “Today” show:

    MATT LAUER: And now to what some are calling an unlikely alliance. During the presidential campaign, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton were fierce adversaries. But despite that bitter campaign, Clinton is proving to be a key asset to Team Obama as Secretary of State. NBC’s Andrea Mitchell has more on that. Andrea, good morning to you.

    [On screen headline: “From Foes To Friends, The Obama-Clinton Team”]

    ANDREA MITCHELL: Good morning, Matt. Well it did seem at the time to be a risky choice, President Obama’s decision to name Hillary Clinton as his Secretary of State. But so far, it looks like their, that controversial decision is paying off and the two formal rivals have formed a real bond. Where in the world is Hillary Clinton? Circling the globe, more than 72,000 miles in just the first 100 days, but now as Barack Obama’s envoy and confidante, speaking for him and his policy, not her own.

    HILLARY CLINTON: I bring greetings from President Obama…On behalf of President Obama…From President Obama.

    MITCHELL: White House officials say the feeling is mutual.

    BARACK OBAMA: I’ve given you an early gift. Hillary Clinton.

    MITCHELL: Gone is the anger of the primaries.

    CLINTON: Shame on you, Barack Obama!

    MITCHELL: Their foreign policy differences – that’s yesterday. Today she’s playing for his team.

    CLINTON: President Obama won the election. He beat me in a primary, in which he put forth a different approach. And he is now our president and we all want our president, no matter of which party, to succeed.

    MITCHELL: Remember how she once said he was too inexperienced to be president? Not any more.

    JOHN PODESTA, OBAMA TRANSITION TEAM: Wherever their struggles were during the course of the presidential nominating fight I think those are long past and I think people are working together effectively and working together well as a team.

    MITCHELL: What does he get? A foreign policy superstar, attracting more attention for his message.

    DORIS KEARNS GOODWIN: He’s got a very powerful point person for his argument that he wants diplomacy to have a greater stake in the world and he couldn’t have found a more powerful person than Hillary for that.

    MITCHELL: And he, more than anyone, knows she is tough, undaunted by challenges on every continent. As for all those critics who said it wouldn’t work, especially because of the ex-president, even he has gotten out of her way.

    JOE KLEIN, TIME: Former President Clinton has been strangely silent these last three or four months, which is all to the good.

    MITCHELL: Clearing the stage for his wife in the role of a lifetime.

    GOODWIN: She seems more vibrant, more alive, loving the job. You felt, you feel that when you watch her out there. She seems relaxed. She seems to be really enjoying herself, as does he.

    MITCHELL: And that’s not to say that there aren’t real problems. Most notably, right now Pakistan. They’re really concerned about the safety of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons supply. But that said she does seem to be enjoying her job, and that’s reflected in her popularity. Right now, the highest approval ratings of any time in her career. So, at least for now, being a team player seems to have its own rewards. Matt?

    LAUER: Alright Andrea, thank you very much. Andrea Mitchell in Washington this morning.

    newsbusters.org/blogs/geoffrey-dickens/2009/05/04/nbcs-mitchell-hails-hillary-clinton-foreign-policy-superstar

  49. BARACK OBAMA: I’ve given you an early gift. Hillary Clinton.

    ***************************************

    DISGUSTING!
    ******************************************

    MITCHELL: Remember how she once said he was too inexperienced to be president? Not any more.
    ****************************************
    Really?
    *************************************

    Where in the world is Hillary Clinton? Circling the globe, more than 72,000 miles in just the first 100 days, but now as Barack Obama’s envoy and confidante, speaking for him and his policy, not her own.
    ***************************************************
    NOT HER OWN….

    **************************************
    JOE KLEIN, TIME: Former President Clinton has been strangely silent these last three or four months, which is all to the good.

    I have been wondering, where is Bill…..

  50. RGB: thanks for posting the above article on what they are censoring to protect their shill Obama. All the news that is unfit to print by a corrupt truth adverse big media.

  51. SHV: I sure hope you are right about Joe. He would make a great Senator. Maybe even a President some day–but I am getting ahead of myself. It would be an honor to support him as you have apparently done.

  52. Long I know, but the poster writes @ NQ and Bitterpolitiz (which is where I found it) and I wanted to send this viral

    An Open Letter to Bill Maher
    May 4, 2009 ·
    by Ani

    Your op-ed in the LA Times on Friday, The GOP: divorced from reality, was really something to behold – a compendium of all the worst smears you could find, carelessly banding all those who oppose President Obama’s reckless actions on the economy into one group. I have never been a member of the GOP and probably never will be. A lifelong Democrat, I became disillusioned with the disgusting and dishonest behavior of the DNC party leadership during 2008 and I now consider myself to be independent. So, by this criteria, I shouldn’t even take offense at your article comparing any Republicans unhappy with our current state of affairs as “behaving like a guy who just got dumped by his wife.” But I am offended. I am offended by you and the level of willful ignorance you exhibit in these statements:

    It’s been a week now, and I still don’t know what those “tea bag” protests were about. I saw signs protesting abortion, illegal immigrants, the bank bailout and that gay guy who’s going to win “American Idol.” But it wasn’t tax day that made them crazy; it was election day. Because that’s when Republicans became what they fear most: a minority.

    Well, as Marshall McCluhan said, “the medium is the message,” so, nothing like coloring your message by only using the tiny fringe minority as an illustration of what the great majority of protesters were shouting about. This is nonsense, but by pushing your false premise, you have repeatedly and unfortunately shown that this is your level. You say that:

    “the conservative base is absolutely apoplectic because, because … well, nobody knows. They’re mad as hell, and they’re not going to take it anymore. Even though they’re not quite sure what “it” is.”

    …[H]ere’s the list of Republican obsessions since President Obama took office: that his birth certificate is supposedly fake, he uses a teleprompter too much, he bowed to a Saudi guy, Europeans like him, he gives inappropriate gifts, his wife shamelessly flaunts her upper arms, and he shook hands with Hugo Chavez and slipped him the nuclear launch codes.

    Well, no dear, that’s really not the sum total of what Republicans are worried about, nor is it the sum total of what the 3 million plus Democrats who did not vote for Barack Obama are worried about. While I do think that a man with a less than sophisticated grasp of the issues who is absolutely painful to listen to without his “prompter” is worrisome in the capable leadership department, I could give a rosy red crap about Michelle’s biceps or whether Europeans want to swap spit with him in the moonlight. That stated, let me try to clue your arrogant, self-righteous, insulting arse in:

    First, Bill, to assume it was only Republicans protesting at last week’s tea parties shows the level of your denial. There were Democrats, too, and Libertarians and Independents as well as Conservatives. People are protesting endless bailouts. They were protesting a Stimulus package crafted by Nancy Pelosi et al behind closed doors that got passed without many in Congress even bothering to read it first; they are pissed that Wall St. is getting bailed out before Main St., with Timmy “Turbo Tax” Geithner and Larry “I like to fall asleep when my President is talking” Summers leading the parade, even though they helped these foxes who guard the henhouse get those outrageous bonuses in the first place.

    They may be a little concerned that the President is telling which CEO’s to step down and that he is refusing to take back TARP money although some big banks are more than ready to repay it. They may be a little concerned about the slippery slope that entails. Go figure…

    And I actually know some folks who voted for President Obama who were out there protesting. They have voiced to me their own desire to figuratively “storm the Bastille.” Most people have no objection to paying taxes. They have an objection to the Administration and the press assuming they are fools who will be terrorized like Chicken Little into believing the sky is falling so that this “crisis” can be used to pass all manner of reckless nonsense before anybody takes a second look. With his most interesting cadre of advisors, there is a little too much quid pro quo going on for my liking. Jeffrey Immelt, CEO of General Electric comes to mind. So much for a new era of transparency. Bill? Any comment?

    Further you state the “big issues for normal people [are] the war, the economy, the environment, mending fences with our enemies and allies, and the rule of law.” Let’s discuss that, shall we. If not for the crack foreign policy team headed by Clinton et al, we would be in a disaster there too. And with Mr. President’s continuing gaffes, and his penchant for advisory “redundancy,” who knows if those efforts are being undermined.

    You will also have to pardon me if I do not appreciate our President standing before a foreign people and saying that America is an arrogant country. We certainly have – and have had arrogant leadership. But how do you think Americans who feel gut punched, watching their savings go up in smoke, out of a job, struggling to feed their families, enjoy hearing such a horrid sound bite while their President is traveling with his staff of 500? How do you think our troops feel? If I had my druthers, we would not be in Iraq, but that is not the fault of our military or their families, who have for six years been bearing the burden and sacrifice for the last Administration’s decisions and folly – a folly which then-Senator Obama voted several times to fund.

    Surprise, Bill, nobody’s hands are clean. Where was the great consensus builder, Barack Obama, back in 2005-8 on the Senate floor, using his oratory prowess to urge a change in direction? What? *crickets* Oh, yes, he was voting to keep Terry Schaivo alive. That’s a good use of his time.

    The rule of law, you say? Torture is wrong. Period. But it’s easy for me to make blanket statements from the anonymity of my keyboard. The fact is there is plenty of blame to go around there, too, as evidenced by the tap dance that Speaker Pelosi is now doing. As to the economy, even Paul Krugman, nobel laureate Keynesian doesn’t think Mr. Obama has the prescription anywhere near right, to the point that Rahm “Rahm-bo” Emanuel is getting all over him. You can hardly call Mr. Krugman a “dumped husband,” or a Republican for that matter.

    You remember Mr. Krugman, don’t you, Bill? He’s the one who, over a year ago said that Hillary Clinton had the best plans for our economy and for health care. You remember Hillary, don’t you Bill? She’s the former First Lady, and two-term sitting Senator from New York who you saw fit to call a “cunt” on your show and then got on Huffington Post to defend your statement as rational. So you will, once again, have to pardon me if I call you out on the carpet as a misogynist fraud.

    I have an excellent memory Mr. Maher, and as someone who used to watch your show until the Hillary bashing and your own hypocritical flip flops got too much for me to bear, I remember many of your past sound bites. You have a lot of nerve saying that “normal people” are worried about the rule of law. I assume you are referring to the release of the “torture memos.” Let me hasten to remind you of your worry that your home near the port of Long Beach would be hit so you were happy to have our government do whatever it took to protect you.

    Let me also remind you that on April 15, 2005 you suddenly changed your tune and after roundly and consistently insulting President Bush, you said you have to “give your boy Georgie props on Iraq”. “Props on Iraq”? Iraq was headed for civil war in 2005. Your guest on the show that night, General Wesley Clark, told you as much and repeated the same on “Meet the Press.” It was a long two years after that until the “surge” took place. Your tune changes with the prevailing wind. One thing that doesn’t change, however, is your short memory and willingness to abandon the truth for a sound bite and an easy laugh.

    Mr. Maher, I think perhaps you get too much of the news from your own echo chamber of HuffPo, DailyKos, MSNBC and Janeane Garafolo. If you could find the courage and decency to get off your own soapbox long enough to pay real attention and not listen to the likes of this biased cadre, you might find there were Republican politicians who tried to take the stump at the protests you so readily deride, only to be loudly booed by the participants.

    Those of us, of all stripes, who are worried and angry are not just “hatin’ on a black man” to quote the offensive Ms. Garafolo. Nothing could be further from the truth. We are angry with Congress altogether – and that means Democrats and Republicans. We feel too many are living in a rarified air, clueless as to the concerns of, or their responsibility to, their constituency.

    Your spreading this kind of propaganda, playing the race card to boot, which you also do in your article, is as reckless and cruel as it is false. As I discerned from many of the 699 comments which followed your piece in the LATimes, the shame is too many who don’t bother to do their own homework actually believe you.

    In order to solve the serious problems we face, we need a President who does not pretend ignorance at the very existence of these protests. Hundreds of thousands of people from around the country were willing to take time off from work in the middle of the day, draw a sign and stand outside for hours to express a grievance. It would do well for the President, Congress and the likes of you to acknowledge that the amount of citizens angry here can most likely be measured in multiples of the actual number of protesters who showed up. And they know exactly what they are angry about. This is more than a fringe. This is more than right wing. And it certainly has nothing to do with racism.

    I thought that the election of Obama as President was to usher in a new era of bipartisanship and respect. Well, the left is not the only group that is allowed to protest something – the moderates and the right get to pipe up, too. During the Iraq war, those of us who protested were roundly ignored or vilified. How is this administration behaving any differently? Mr. Maher, you and they are guilty of contempt prior to examination. And that, sir, is business as usual, from both sides.

    Citizens from all ends of the spectrum need to find a way to reach out and find common ground, and keep communicating so that we figure out how to get out of the mess we are in. I have less and less confidence than anyone in power is really listening.

    I know I am beating my head against a brick wall here, Mr. Maher, but you only show yourself to be as bad as the very stereotypes you demonize by putting forth this type of tunnel-vision drivel. Shame on you for deciding you are in any position to make pronouncements as to the motives of so many citizens just because they do not see fit to be part of your adoring flock.

  53. What Mitchell et. al. say one minute and then contradict the next is a matter of no consequence. They give a pass to anyone who supports Obama even if it is Hillary. I hope Hillary is indifferent to their accolades. The reality test for her, as for any other politician will be what tangible, measureable, verifiable results does she produce on the foreign policy front. I cannot be a critic of their delusions when they embrace Obama when he has shown no results other than gladhandling, but enthralled when they do the same thing for Hillary. The test cases will come in the usual hotspots and that is where big media rhetoric and hard core reality will come face to face. That is the test of greatness, and the test she will past, regardless of what the bought and paid for whores of general electric want to say.

  54. As long as Hillary plays “ball” and they think she is supporting their idol, then they will give her a grudging pass. They will backhandedly applaud her achievements while at the same time giving obama the biggest credit.

    The moment she takes a stand against him, watch out.

  55. As long as Hillary plays “ball” and they think she is supporting their idol, then they will give her a grudging pass. They will backhandedly applaud her achievements while at the same time giving obama the biggest credit.

    The moment she takes a stand against him, watch out.
    —————————————————–
    Very true Jan.

    I still think this is celebrity time not show time. Show time is when the conflicts will emerge, and the difference between smart decisions and dumb ones will be drawn into high relief. Now everyone is just Tom Cruising along of Bush hate, and the new heaven new earth meme.

    If they knew the actual groundwork Hillary is laying to shore up our foreign policy weaknesses their conclusions would be more informed, substantive and meaningful they the drivel they peddle. In that case their conclusions about the hard work she is doing would not ring as hollow to my ear as they do. They have the maturity of high school kids. What a fucking group of losers.

  56. wbboei Says:

    May 4th, 2009 at 12:50 pm
    RGB: thanks for posting the above article on what they are censoring to protect their shill Obama. All the news that is unfit to print by a corrupt truth adverse big media.
    &&&&&&&

    Thanks, but more credit goes to AmericanGal, who found it. Yeah, that’s a good one.

  57. I detest Maher, even when I listened to him. Odd statement I know. He just got increasingly grandiose and belligerent. He is a top shelf misogynist to boot!

  58. Sen. Specter Hints Jack Kemp Died of GOP Agenda

    Monday, May 4, 2009 8:22 AM

    Article Font Size

    Sen. Arlen Specter, Pennsylvania Democrat, said part of the reason he left the Republican Party last week was disillusionment with its healthcare priorities, and suggested that had the Republicans taken a more moderate track, Jack Kemp may have won his battle with cancer.

    Mr. Specter, responding to a question from CBS’s Bob Schieffer over whether he had let down Pennsylvanians who wanted a Republican to represent them, said he felt his priorities were more in line with those of the Democrats.

    “Well, I was sorry to disappoint many people. Frankly, I was disappointed that the Republican Party didn’t want me as their candidate,” Mr. Specter said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “But as a matter of principle, I’m becoming much more comfortable with the Democrats’ approach. And one of the items that I’m working on, Bob, is funding for medical research.”

    Mr. Specter continued: “If we had pursued what President Nixon declared in 1970 as the war on cancer, we would have cured many strains. I think Jack Kemp would be alive today. And that research has saved or prolonged many lives, including mine.”

    Mr. Kemp passed away Saturday, after fighting with cancer. Mr. Kemp ran for the White House in 1996 with Republican presidential candidate Bob Dole.

    ************************************************

    Ok, now Kemp would have been too old for any rationed ‘treatment’, nice to know we can now cure cancer with the fraud in power, who knew?

  59. Inside Cover RSS ARCHIVE

    Print Page | Forward Page | E-mail Us

    Bill Clinton Praises Kemp, ‘Big Heart’

    Sunday, May 3, 2009 6:14 PM

    Article Font Size

    Former President Bill Clinton praised Jack Kemp, who died Saturday, in a statement released on the Web site of the William J. Clinton Foundation:

    “America has lost an extraordinary public servant and a fine man. Jack Kemp will always be remembered for his relentless search for new ideas and his genuine concern for the poor and people of color, most of whom he knew would never vote for him. He was a creative conservative with a big heart.

    “My condolences to his wife Joanne and the Kemp family. I will miss him very much.”

    ***************************************************

    Now this is the way a true human being, and a gentleman comments on the passing of Kemp

  60. JanH Says:
    May 4th, 2009 at 1:08 pm

    As long as Hillary plays “ball” and they think she is supporting their idol, then they will give her a grudging pass. They will backhandedly applaud her achievements while at the same time giving obama the biggest credit.

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

    Well, she is getting good marks in the polls – 70+ vs Obama’s 60+.

    So they have to spin to discredit that fact somehow, or distract from it. Or pre-empt it.

    As though she were being graded on obedience to the Obama whom she is out-polling!

  61. gonzotx Says:
    May 4th, 2009 at 12:58 pm

    An Open Letter to Bill Maher
    by Ani
    &&&&&&&&&

    Ani’s analysis of Bill Maher’s op-ed piece, which seeks to marginalize all Republicans as whack jobs obsessed with trivial things, reminds me of tactics other MSM Obama defenders are using.

    These centrist and lefty pundits don’t want to reveal anything bad that Obama is responsible for. It would remind them that the guy they put so much faith in, the guy whom they so dutifully supported throughout 2008 in the primaries and general election, has completely sold them out. A – Z, he’s done an about face. And when he has tried something worthwhile, it has been incompetently carried out.

    So with little good to report (economy listless, Iraq not growing “independent”, allies unwilling to support us in Iraq and Afghanistan, ineffective bailouts that line the pockets of his friends, etc.), they must resort to diversionary tactics:

    a. Michelle fluff: Nice arms! Organic arugula! Fashionista more incfluential than Jackie Kennedy!
    b. Family fluff: Stories about the girls, stories about the dog. Easter Egg Hunt!!
    c. Republicans: They are loony. They wander aimlessly, trying to recal Glory Days. They are doomed to extinction.

    If you want real journalism or biting satire, don’t turn on your TV set, ignore those late night “funny guys”, skip the Big Papers (unless it’s for the crossword puzzle). Go on-line, look for stories from other countries, and those not striving to make the president look good (which Chris Matthews admits is “his job”).

  62. WRGB PRESENT NEW GAME SHOW: “SPOT THE PORK”. SEE WHAT CONGRESS IS WORKING ON…

    From “our friends” at DailyKaos:

    This Week in Congress
    by David Waldman
    Mon May 04, 2009 at 06:20:02 AM PDT

    In the House, courtesy of the Office of the Majority Leader:

    First Vote of the Week… Monday 6:30 p.m.
    Last Vote Predicted… Thursday p.m.

    MONDAY, MAY 4, 2009

    On Monday, the House will meet at 12:30 p.m. for Morning Hour debate and 2:00 p.m. for legislative business with votes postponed until 6:30 p.m.

    Suspensions (4 Bills)

    1) H.Res. 230 – Recognizing the historical significance of the Mexican holiday of Cinco de Mayo (Rep. Baca – Foreign Affairs)
    2) H.Con.Res. 111 – Recognizing the 61st anniversary of the independence of the State of Israel (Rep. Garrett – Foreign Affairs)
    3) H.Con.Res. 103 – Supporting the goals and ideals of Malaria Awareness Day (Rep. Payne – Foreign Affairs)
    4) H.Res. 283 – Honoring the life, achievements, and contributions of Rabbi Charles H. Rosenzveig (Rep. Peters – Foreign Affairs)

    TUESDAY, MAY 5, 2009 AND THE BALANCE OF THE WEEK

    On Tuesday, the House will meet at 10:30 a.m. for Morning Hour debate and 12:00 p.m. for legislative business. On Wednesday and Thursday, the House will meet at 10:00 a.m. for legislative business. On Friday, no votes are expected in the House.

    Suspensions (14 Bills)

    1) H.R. 774 – To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 46-02 21st Street in Long Island City, New York, as the “Geraldine Ferraro Post Office Building” (Rep. Maloney – Oversight and Government Reform)
    2) H.R. 1397 – To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 41 Purdy Avenue in Rye, New York, as the “Caroline O’Day Post Office Building” (Rep. Lowey – Oversight and Government Reform)
    3) H.Res. 299 – Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that public servants should be commended for their dedication and continued service to the Nation during Public Service Recognition Week, May 4 through 10, 2009, and throughout the year (Rep. Lynch – Oversight and Government Reform)
    4) H.R. 1271 – To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 2351 West Atlantic Boulevard in Pompano Beach, Florida, as the “Elijah Pat Larkins Post Office Building” (Rep. Hastings (FL) – Oversight and Government Reform)
    5) H.Res. 382 – Supporting the goals and ideals of National Charter Schools Week, to be held May 3 through May 9, 2009 (Rep. Bishop (UT) – Education and Labor)
    6) H.Res. 338 – Supporting the goals and ideals of National Community College Month (Rep. Latham – Education and Labor)
    7) H.Res. 348 – Congratulating the University of North Carolina men’s basketball team for winning the 2009 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball National Championship (Rep. Price (NC) – Education and Labor)
    8) H.Res. 353 – Supporting the goals and ideals of Global Youth Service Days (Rep. DeLauro – Education and Labor)
    9) H.R. 1107 – To enact certain laws relating to public contracts as title 41, United States Code, “Public Contracts” (Rep. Conyers – Judiciary)
    10) H.Res. 313 – Supporting the goals and ideals of National Public Works Week, and for other purposes (Rep. Oberstar – Transportation and Infrastructure)
    11) H.Res. 269 – Supporting the goals of Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month (Rep. Giffords – Transportation and Infrastructure)
    12) H.Res. 367 – Supporting the goals and ideals of National Train Day (Rep. Brown (FL) – Transportation and Infrastructure)
    13) H.Res. 391 – Recognizing May as “National Foster Care Month” and acknowledging that the House of Representatives should continue to work to improve the Nation’s foster care system (Rep. McDermott – Ways and Means)
    14) S. 386 – Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act of 2009, as amended (Sen. Leahy/Rep. Conyers – Judiciary)

    H.R. 1728 – Mortgage Reform and Anti-Predatory Lending Act (Rep. Miller (NC) – Financial Services) (Subject to a Rule)

  63. Mary @ Bitter….

    Ah, Jesus No.

    Napolitano Declines to Rule Out Interest in Supreme Court Appointment

    Janet Napolitano declined to rule out being interested in an appointment to the Supreme Court when she was asked on “FOX News Sunday” about speculation that she might be on the list of potential candidates to replace outgoing Justice David Souter.

    foxnews.com/politics/2009/05/03/napolitano-declines-rule-supreme-court-appointment/

  64. rgb44hrc Says:

    May 4th, 2009 at 2:21 pm
    WRGB PRESENT NEW GAME SHOW: “SPOT THE PORK”. SEE WHAT CONGRESS IS WORKING ON…
    *********************************************

    This why we need term limits!

  65. Actually, the game show for this week should be “SPOT THE ONE THING THAT IS OVERTLY NOT PORK”.

    Whadda waste of time, dem bums are (House of Reps). I’m sure the Senate is also working on “Lollipop Day”, and “Honor BO the First Dog Day” resolutions.

  66. gonzotx Says:

    May 4th, 2009 at 2:21 pm
    Mary @ Bitter….

    Ah, Jesus No.

    Napolitano Declines to Rule Out Interest in Supreme Court Appointment

    Janet Napolitano declined to rule out being interested in an appointment to the Supreme Court when she was asked on “FOX News Sunday” about speculation that she might be on the list of potential candidates to replace outgoing Justice David Souter.
    &&&&&&&

    I have made it known that I too am not ruling out my interest in the Supreme Court appointment. They know where to find me.

  67. May 4th, 2009 at 12:50 pm
    RGB: thanks for posting the above article on what they are censoring to protect their shill Obama. All the news that is unfit to print by a corrupt truth adverse big media.
    &&&&&&&

    Thanks, but more credit goes to AmericanGal, who found it. Yeah, that’s a good one.
    ——————-
    Thanks AmericanGal.

  68. You’re welcome wbboei! That article was so on the money–I wish it would go viral..

  69. This is fun…Obama Budget Cuts Visualization

    How much Obama’s proposed $100 million dollars in budget cuts compared to the federal budget as a whole?

    Watch and see

  70. AmericanGal and everyone else. Here is another one that should go viral. This was emailed to me this morning by a friend who voted for Obama in the general election and has been trying to persuade me that I was wrong. I have been wrong about many things in my life, but not about this. This article turned him around and it is good material to use against more thoughful people on the left with the catchline “be careful what you wish for because you may have the misfortune of getting it”.
    ——————————————————————–
    http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/20090503_buying_brand_obama/
    Buying Brand Obama
    EMAIL PRINT SHARE

    Posted on May 3, 2009

    By Chris Hedges
    Barack Obama is a brand. And the Obama brand is designed to make us feel good about our government while corporate overlords loot the Treasury, our elected officials continue to have their palms greased by armies of corporate lobbyists, our corporate media diverts us with gossip and trivia and our imperial wars expand in the Middle East. Brand Obama is about being happy consumers. We are entertained. We feel hopeful. We like our president. We believe he is like us. But like all branded products spun out from the manipulative world of corporate advertising, we are being duped into doing and supporting a lot of things that are not in our interest.

    What, for all our faith and hope, has the Obama brand given us? His administration has spent, lent or guaranteed $12.8 trillion in taxpayer dollars to Wall Street and insolvent banks in a doomed effort to reinflate the bubble economy, a tactic that at best forestalls catastrophe and will leave us broke in a time of profound crisis. Brand Obama has allocated nearly $1 trillion in defense-related spending and the continuation of our doomed imperial projects in Iraq, where military planners now estimate that 70,000 troops will remain for the next 15 to 20 years. Brand Obama has expanded the war in Afghanistan, including the use of drones sent on cross-border bombing runs into Pakistan that have doubled the number of civilians killed over the past three months. Brand Obama has refused to ease restrictions so workers can organize and will not consider single-payer, not-for-profit health care for all Americans. And Brand Obama will not prosecute the Bush administration for war crimes, including the use of torture, and has refused to dismantle Bush’s secrecy laws or restore habeas corpus.

    Brand Obama offers us an image that appears radically individualistic and new. It inoculates us from seeing that the old engines of corporate power and the vast military-industrial complex continue to plunder the country. Corporations, which control our politics, no longer produce products that are essentially different, but brands that are different. Brand Obama does not threaten the core of the corporate state any more than did Brand George W. Bush. The Bush brand collapsed. We became immune to its studied folksiness. We saw through its artifice. This is a common deflation in the world of advertising. So we have been given a new Obama brand with an exciting and faintly erotic appeal. Benetton and Calvin Klein were the precursors to the Obama brand, using ads to associate themselves with risqué art and progressive politics. It gave their products an edge. But the goal, as with all brands, was to make passive consumers mistake a brand with an experience.

    “The abandonment of the radical economic foundations of the women’s and civil-rights movements by the conflation of causes that came to be called political correctness successfully trained a generation of activists in the politics of image, not action,” Naomi Klein wrote in “No Logo.”
    Obama, who has become a global celebrity, was molded easily into a brand. He had almost no experience, other than two years in the Senate, lacked any moral core and could be painted as all things to all people. His brief Senate voting record was a miserable surrender to corporate interests. He was happy to promote nuclear power as “green” energy. He voted to continue the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He reauthorized the Patriot Act. He would not back a bill designed to cap predatory credit card interest rates. He opposed a bill that would have reformed the notorious Mining Law of 1872. He refused to support the single-payer health care bill HR676, sponsored by Reps. Dennis Kucinich and John Conyers. He supported the death penalty. And he backed a class-action “reform” bill that was part of a large lobbying effort by financial firms. The law, known as the Class Action Fairness Act, would effectively shut down state courts as a venue to hear most class-action lawsuits and deny redress in many of the courts where these cases have a chance of defying powerful corporate challenges.

    While Gaza was being bombarded and hit with airstrikes in the weeks before Obama took office, “the Obama team let it be known that it would not object to the planned resupply of ‘smart bombs’ and other hi-tech ordnance that was already flowing to Israel,” according to Seymour Hersh. Even his one vaunted anti-war speech as a state senator, perhaps his single real act of defiance, was swiftly reversed. He told the Chicago Tribune on July 27, 2004, that “there’s not that much difference between my position and George Bush’s position at this stage. The difference, in my mind, is who’s in a position to execute.” And unlike anti-war stalwarts like Kucinich, who gave hundreds of speeches against the war, Obama then dutifully stood silent until the Iraq war became unpopular.

    Obama’s campaign won the vote of hundreds of marketers, agency heads and marketing-services vendors gathered at the Association of National Advertisers’ annual conference in October. The Obama campaign was named Advertising Age’s marketer of the year for 2008 and edged out runners-up Apple and Zappos.com. Take it from the professionals. Brand Obama is a marketer’s dream. President Obama does one thing and Brand Obama gets you to believe another. This is the essence of successful advertising. You buy or do what the advertiser wants because of how they can make you feel.

    Celebrity culture has leeched into every aspect of our culture, including politics, to bequeath to us what Benjamin DeMott called “junk politics.” Junk politics does not demand justice or the reparation of rights. Junk politics personalizes and moralizes issues rather than clarifying them. “It’s impatient with articulated conflict, enthusiastic about America’s optimism and moral character, and heavily dependent on feel-your-pain language and gesture,” DeMott noted. The result of junk politics is that nothing changes – “meaning zero interruption in the processes and practices that strengthen existing, interlocking systems of socioeconomic advantage.” It redefines traditional values, tilting “courage toward braggadocio, sympathy toward mawkishness, humility toward self-disrespect, identification with ordinary citizens toward distrust of brains.” Junk politics “miniaturizes large, complex problems at home while maximizing threats from abroad. It’s also given to abrupt unexplained reversals of its own public stances, often spectacularly bloating problems previously miniaturized.” And finally, it “seeks at every turn to obliterate voters’ consciousness of socioeconomic and other differences in their midst.”

    An image-based culture, one dominated by junk politics, communicates through narratives, pictures and carefully orchestrated spectacle and manufactured pseudo-drama. Scandalous affairs, hurricanes, earthquakes, untimely deaths, lethal new viruses, train wrecks—these events play well on computer screens and television. International diplomacy, labor union negotiations and convoluted bailout packages do not yield exciting personal narratives or stimulating images. A governor who patronizes call girls becomes a huge news story. A politician who proposes serious regulatory reform, universal health care or advocates curbing wasteful spending is boring. Kings, queens and emperors once used their court conspiracies to divert their subjects. Today cinematic, political and journalistic celebrities distract us with their personal foibles and scandals. They create our public mythology. Acting, politics and sports have become, as they were during the reign of Nero, interchangeable.

    In an age of images and entertainment, in an age of instant emotional gratification, we do not seek reality. Reality is complicated. Reality is boring. We are incapable or unwilling to handle its confusion. We ask to be indulged and comforted by clichés, stereotypes and inspirational messages that tell us we can be whoever we seek to be, that we live in the greatest country on Earth, that we are endowed with superior moral and physical qualities, and that our future will always be glorious and prosperous, either because of our own attributes, or our national character, or because we are blessed by God. Reality is not accepted as an impediment to our desires. Reality does not make us feel good.

    In his book “Public Opinion,” Walter Lippmann distinguished between “the world outside and the pictures in our heads.” He defined a “stereotype” as an oversimplified pattern that helps us find meaning in the world. Lippmann cited examples of the crude “stereotypes we carry about in our heads” of whole groups of people such as “Germans,” “South Europeans,” “Negroes,” “Harvard men,” “agitators” and others. These stereotypes, Lippmann noted, give a reassuring and false consistency to the chaos of existence. They offer easily grasped explanations of reality and are closer to propaganda because they simplify rather than complicate.

    Pseudo-events—dramatic productions orchestrated by publicists, political machines, television, Hollywood or advertisers—however, are very different. They have, as Daniel Boorstin wrote in “The Image: A Guide to Pseudo-Events in America,” the capacity to appear real even though we know they are staged. They are capable, because they can evoke a powerful emotional response, of overwhelming reality and replacing reality with a fictional narrative that often becomes accepted truth. The unmasking of a stereotype damages and often destroys its credibility. But pseudo-events, whether they show the president in an auto plant or a soup kitchen or addressing troops in Iraq, are immune to this deflation. The exposure of the elaborate mechanisms behind the pseudo-event only adds to its fascination and its power. This is the basis of the convoluted television reporting on how effectively political campaigns and politicians have been stage-managed.

    Reporters, especially those on television, no longer ask if the message is true but if the pseudo-event worked or did not work as political theater. Pseudo-events are judged on how effectively we have been manipulated by illusion. Those events that appear real are relished and lauded. Those that fail to create a believable illusion are deemed failures. Truth is irrelevant. Those who succeed in politics, as in most of the culture, are those who create the brands and pseudo-events that offer the most convincing fantasies. And this is the art Obama has mastered.

    A public that can no longer distinguish between truth and fiction is left to interpret reality through illusion. Random facts or obscure bits of data and trivia are used to bolster illusion and give it credibility or are discarded if they interfere with the message. The worse reality becomes—the more, for example, foreclosures and unemployment skyrocket—the more people seek refuge and comfort in illusions. When opinions cannot be distinguished from facts, when there is no universal standard to determine truth in law, in science, in scholarship, or in reporting the events of the day, when the most valued skill is the ability to entertain, the world becomes a place where lies become true, where people can believe what they want to believe. This is the real danger of pseudo-events and why pseudo-events are far more pernicious than stereotypes. They do not explain reality, as stereotypes attempt to, but replace reality. Pseudo-events redefine reality by the parameters set by their creators. These creators, who make massive profits peddling these illusions, have a vested interest in maintaining the power structures they control.

    The old production-oriented culture demanded what the historian Warren Susman termed character. The new consumption-oriented culture demands what he called personality. The shift in values is a shift from a fixed morality to the artifice of presentation. The old cultural values of thrift and moderation honored hard work, integrity and courage. The consumption-oriented culture honors charm, fascination and likability. “The social role demanded of all in the new culture of personality was that of a performer,” Susman wrote. “Every American was to become a performing self.”

    The junk politics practiced by Obama is a consumer fraud. It is about performance. It is about lies. It is about keeping us in a perpetual state of childishness. But the longer we live in illusion, the worse reality will be when it finally shatters our fantasies. Those who do not understand what is happening around them and who are overwhelmed by a brutal reality they did not expect or foresee search desperately for saviors. They beg demagogues to come to their rescue. This is the ultimate danger of the Obama Brand. It effectively masks the wanton internal destruction and theft being carried out by our corporate state. These corporations, once they have stolen trillions in taxpayer wealth, will leave tens of millions of Americans bereft, bewildered and yearning for even more potent and deadly illusions, ones that could swiftly snuff out what is left of our diminished open society.

  71. Former Intel Chief: Obama, Congress Creating Risk-Averse CIA

    Monday, May 4, 2009 11:02 AM

    By: Ronald Kessler Article Font Size

    President Obama’s release of memos on CIA interrogation tactics could send the agency into a “dark age” leading to another successful terrorist attack, Charles Allen, who recently left as chief of intelligence of the Department of Homeland Security, tells Newsmax.

    “I feel that we’re headed into a very dark period that could last up to a decade, where we’re not going to be very courageous because we’re going to get potentially punished,” Allen says.

    From 2005 until Jan. 20 of this year, Allen was undersecretary of Homeland Security for Intelligence and Analysis, detailed to DHS from the CIA. In the Newsmax interview, Allen repudiated a controversial report issued by his former office warning law enforcement about the potential for violence from returning military forces.

    The report said that fears of possible new restrictions on firearms, as well as the return of military veterans facing problems returning to civilian life, could “lead to the potential emergence of terrorist groups or lone wolf extremists capable of carrying out violent attacks.”

    Calling the report “ill-advised,” “rambling,” and “not professionally written,” Allen observes, “It was sort of a situational awareness alert, but it seemed to be poorly written and not based on empirical data to support some of the judgments, particularly the issue relating to veterans.”

    Allen is a legendary figure in American intelligence circles. Having joined the CIA in 1958, he has served as a deputy director of the Counterterrorism Center and as the national intelligence officer for counterterrorism.

    When the 9/11 attacks occurred, Allen was a special assistant to the director of Central Intelligence. In that role, Allen coordinated spy satellite coverage. As he told me for my book “The CIA at War: Inside the Secret Campaign Against Terror,” for three days after 9/11, he slept on an air mattress in his office.

    Allen cites the chilling effect John Deutch, as director of Central Intelligence, had on the CIA. In September 1995, Deutch issued instructions requiring high-level approval for recruitment of assets with so-called human rights violations. Deutch fired two agency officials because they had recruited Guatemalan assets who had engaged in political assassination.

    “Deutch said we should recruit people who were not hardened terrorists,” Allen says. “He said you could always propose such a recruitment up to the director if necessary. But you didn’t want to bring up somebody that was highly controversial. You wouldn’t waste your time to try to justify the recruitment.”

    The risk-averse atmosphere generated by Deutch impaired the agency’s ability to detect the 9/11 plot, Allen says. As a result, “When al-Qaida began to build in 1996, we didn’t have direct penetration at the level that was required,” he says.

    Allen says Obama’s release of the memos and condemnation of the tactics used, along with criticism from members of Congress who were briefed on the coercive interrogation techniques back in 2002, is a “debacle” that is once again creating an “extremely risk-averse atmosphere.”

    “There’s going to be a tendency not to take risks, and not to go against our hardest targets,” Allen says. “We’re talking about doing operations in certain areas of the world which are hostile or are denied areas. We need to take risks, to put people in under deep cover with little or no protection. Or to do a technical operation or to recruit a terrorist. I don’t know now whether we’ll come up with those kind of forward-leaning, cutting-edge intelligence operations.”

    At the same time, “We have Sen. Patrick Leahy calling for a truth commission,” Allen says. “Leahy was banished from the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence for leaking information,” he says, referring to Leahy’s admission in 1987 that he leaked material about the Iran Contra affair to an NBC reporter. “Now it seems he is vindictive toward the agency and our officers. So I think there’s a very decidedly adverse atmosphere that’s been created.”

    The need for a strong CIA has never been greater, Allen says.

    “The threat of proliferation and the spread of weapons and technology are occurring,” he says. “This is a time when we need HUMINT operations [intelligence from human assets] and technical operations beyond where we are. We are doing some things that are exciting, using HUMINT-enabled technical collection, some of which is stunning. But will that be sustained and continued and intensified? And will we take the risks that go with that?”

    At this point, “It’s incumbent on the administration to now go out of its way, in a whole series of ways, to reassure not just CIA but the intelligence community as a whole, that we need to move ahead with real vigor,” Allen says. Otherwise, “Over a five year period, unless we continue at the same aggressive level that we have been at since Sept. 11, we are likely going to suffer another attack,” Allen says.

    Allen says al-Qaida could initiate a series of attacks.

    “That could create the consternation in this country that one major attack would incur,” he says. “We’re not a hardened society. The British never shut down the tube the day of the explosions in London in 2005. The trains ran, the airports remained open, the buses ran, except for the one that had its top ripped off. We’re not in that frame of operation. So I think it would have a very devastating effect.”

  72. Allen says al-Qaida could initiate a series of attacks.

    “That could create the consternation in this country that one major attack would incur,” he says. “We’re not a hardened society. The British never shut down the tube the day of the explosions in London in 2005. The trains ran, the airports remained open, the buses ran, except for the one that had its top ripped off. We’re not in that frame of operation. So I think it would have a very devastating effect.”
    ***********************************

    The British have always had a stiff upper lip, and I think America did in WW2, but he is right, we would panic..but, we would shop!

  73. I fully understand that both Bill and Hillary support the two state solution-which everyone but the Arabs do(they want a one state solution being the elimination of Israel). I even accepted Bill and Hillary’s pressure for concessions on territory *(although I am personally not in favor of it), but the difference was I knew in the end, the Clintons would protect Israel. With Obama, I do not have the same feeling. I am surprised he has acted so quickly at alienating Israel and potentially the millions of Jews who voted so early in his term. Then again, he gets his marching orders from Axelrod and Emanuel, who, sadly, imo, put their own ambitions ahead of their own people.

  74. When you see Andrea Mitchell gushing about Hillary, it’s because she was dumb enough to believe the caricature of Hillary as a cold, back-stabbing, power-hungry bitch – so naturally she’s shocked, shocked to see the real Hillary is nothing of the sort. In other words, her expectations were absurdly low to begin with.

    Same with Bill. Was he a “liability” when she was serving in the Senate? Of course not, and there’s no reason he’d be one when she’s SoS. That whole meme was a product of the primary and the media’s pro-Obama bias.

    Notice, too, there’s not a peep about any conflicts from contributions to Bill’s foundation. That also was a media creation that was simply much ado about nothing.

  75. PREPARE TO LAUGH:

    Some people are actually “thrilled” at all that Obama has “accomplished”. His toadies at SEIU, who continue to prop him up. Quid pro quo, money under the table, yadda yadda.

    I got this link from, where else, DailtyKaos. I like to go there for the chuckles.

    seiu.org/2009/04/obamas-first-100-days-what-hes-done-for-workers.php

    10:01 PM Eastern – April 29, 2009
    Obama’s First 100 Days: What he’s done for workers
    =====================================

    By Kate Thomas

    Today marks the 100th day Obama has been in the Oval Office. Over the past three months, President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and Congress have made major strides to rebuild America for working families. “President Obama has made it clear from day one that we will not be able to rebuild our economy stronger than it was without a greater voice, and greater prosperity, for American workers,” said SEIU Secretary-Treasurer Anna Burger in a statement, highlighting workers’ engagement during the Administration’s first 100 days:

    “Countless hours by SEIU members and other workers reaching out to our neighbors and co-workers helped pass an economic recovery bill that is putting people back to work. Writing letters to our Representatives and newspapers until our hands hurt helped pass a budget with a real down payment on health care. Continuing to call our Senators until we have their numbers memorized will restore the freedom to form unions so that workers, not just CEOs, can benefit from economic progress.”

    Read Anna’s full statement. In the YouTube video clip below, SEIU President Andy Stern talks about the amazing change we’ve seen over Obama’s 100 Days: a stimulus, the passage of SCHIP, the passage of the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, a budget bill with green jobs, the introduction of the Employee Free Choice and more. Watch now:

  76. “I am surprised he has acted so quickly at alienating Israel and potentially the millions of Jews who voted so early in his term.”

    ——————————–

    I’m not surprised at all. It was a ruse. He puts on mask after mask to cover his real motives and they are not pro-Israel they are pro-Arab 100%. His allies and best buddies are Jew haters. I fully expect Hillary and bambi to come to heads over this issue.

  77. Stocks surge; S&P 500 turns positive for 2009
    05/04/09 17:02 EDT

    NEW YORK -Another big rally on Wall Street has erased the losses suffered by the Standard & Poor’s 500 index this year.

    The S&P 500, the market barometer preferred by professional investors, is now up …
    ********************************************

    Wonder how much longer this can go on while we lose 600,000 jobs a month and wages are going down?

  78. DIVERSION #104: TAXING OFFSHORE TAX HAVENS

    Give us this day, our daily distraction, so that we may believe, The One looks out for us.

    Another day, another “hey we’re gettin’ things done”. If this was actually going to get done, who wouldn’t cheer for the loopholes to get closed up for those tax-cheatin’ companies with a mail box called “Corporate Headquarters” in Bermuda or wherever.

    But alas, the devil is in the details. And sure enough, the “details” will be revealed later this week.

    The fun easy stuff will be trumpeted. The cutesy little stuff that corporations and their clever accountants will be tucked into little corners that will escape public scrutiny.

    * The press will fawn.
    * The public will be quoted “Sounds good to me”, “They have it coming”.
    * And the insider corporate lawyers and accountants will “provide suggestions”, if not practically write the legistlation.

    Obama Calls for New Curbs on Offshore Tax Havens
    ====================================
    By JEFF ZELENY and BRIAN KNOWLTON
    Published: May 4, 2009
    WASHINGTON — President Obama presented a far-reaching set of proposals on Monday that are aimed at the tax benefits enjoyed by companies and wealthy individuals harboring cash in offshore accounts.

    While most Americans paid their fair share of taxes, President Obama said, “there are others who are shirking theirs, and many are aided and abetted by a broken tax system.”

    These steps, he said, would be the first in a much broader effort to fix a “broken tax system.”

    Mr. Obama made the announcement in the Grand Foyer of the White House, standing alongside Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner and the Internal Revenue Service commissioner, Douglas Shulman. His remarks echoed the sentiment he voiced again and again during the presidential campaign when he pledged to crack down on overseas tax evaders.

    The proposed tax overhaul, which will be detailed later this week when the White House presents its formal budget, could help raise $210 billion in revenue over 10 years, the administration estimates.

    While most Americans pay their fair share of taxes, Mr. Obama said, “there are others who are shirking theirs, and many are aided and abetted by a broken tax system.” Multinational corporations, he said, paid an average tax rate of just 2 percent on their foreign revenue. And some wealthy individuals hide their fortunes in foreign tax havens.

    The president thus set up a frontal clash with big business over the tax advantages enjoyed by companies with extensive overseas operations.

    Large multinational companies like Microsoft, General Electric and Cisco Systems have been bracing for such an initiative from the Obama administration. Critics of the approach say that it could lead not to the administration’s hoped-for repatriation of taxes but rather to job losses or higher prices as companies try to compensate for a greater tax burden.

    Martin Regalia, chief economist of the United States Chamber of Commerce, challenged the administration’s reasoning.

    “The United States is the only major industrialized country which double-taxes the overseas earnings of our companies,” he said in a statement. By limiting companies’ ability to defer tax payments, he said, “you limit the ability of U.S. companies to compete, you impede growth in the U.S. economy, and you cause the loss of jobs — both at the companies directly impacted and companies in their supply chains.”

    Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Republican leader, said he supported tax reform and efforts to crack down on tax evaders. But, he added, “I cannot endorse a plan that gives preferential treatment to foreign companies at the expense of U.S. companies.”

    He called the plan “a significant tax increase on companies representing 44 percent of total U.S. private employment” and said that in the depths of recession, it seemed “particularly harmful to our shared goal of creating more American jobs rather than driving them overseas.”

    President Obama addressed some of the concerns Monday, saying that “I want to see our companies remain the most competitive in the world” but that the way to do that was “not to reward companies for moving jobs off our shores or transferring profits” abroad.

    One proposed change would restrict companies from deferring the payment of taxes on profit earned overseas. Administration officials said the plan would keep businesses from taking deductions against their taxes by inflating the amount of foreign taxes they paid.

    Mr. Obama raised the idea frequently during his presidential campaign. In his remarks to Congress in February, as he outlined his priorities for the year, he pledged to make the tax code more equitable by “finally ending the tax breaks for corporations that ship our jobs overseas.”

    The White House said that Mr. Obama is seeking to shut down overseas tax havens in an attempt to “close the international tax gap.”

    Mr. Geithner noted that the Group of 20 industrial countries had agreed this year to act against tax havens like Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg and Monaco. Amid such rising pressure, 10 countries have agreed to adopt new international standards, he said.

    “For years, we’ve talked about shutting down overseas tax havens,” Mr. Obama said. “That’s what our budget will finally do.”

    The president said he hopes to remove the competitive advantage for companies that invest and create jobs overseas, working to replace their tax advantages with incentives to produce jobs in the United States.

    [snip]

  79. The president said he hopes to remove the competitive advantage for companies that invest and create jobs overseas, working to replace their tax advantages with incentives to produce jobs in the United States.
    ————————————-
    Oh he will talk about it. He can lawfully remove tax advantages for companies who transfer jobs over seas. But if he wants to talk about shutting the door AFTER the horse has left the barn this is where that analaogy applies. Our manufacturing base was transferred to China years ago. Is he willing to remove that advantage retroactively? Of course not. And when the time comes to talk about creating incentives to keep jobs here in the United States, he will run into WTO, GATT and NAFTA which may well preclude it. And isn’t a shame that he gave away our sovereign right to regulate our economy on issues like this when he was in Europe recently, by transferring it to a body of international bankers at the Hague, where we have only one vote. You cannot believe one word the man says.

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