Blog on the Run: Reloaded

Friday, January 8, 2010 11:26 pm

Odds and ends for 1/8


Wellnow. AIG, Tim Geithner and PricewaterhouseCoopers could all be in trouble. I don’t know much about PwC, but as far as the other two go, trouble couldn’t happen to a more deserving pair. Unfortunately for Democrats, AIG and Geithner are now their problem, as at least some recognize.

And regarding Geithner, etc., this Republican says “amen”: Says “washunate”: “If we [Democrats] don’t clean house, Republicans eventually will. … We are at the bizarre point now where situations that should be case studies for everything that’s wrong with the crony capitalism of the Reagan-Bush era are being turned into defend-the-ramparts or remember-the-Alamo entrenchment by Democratic leaders.”

NO MASterCard!: Consumer borrowing plunged by a seasonally adjusted all-time record $17.5 billion in Novemer.

Freemasonry unveiled!: And it’s not nearly as entertaining as Dan Brown would have us believe.

Evidence that Teh Sm4rt Kid2 aren’t going into journalism: Newsweek’s Jonathan Alter suggests that President Obama meet personally with Dick Cheney to tell him to STFU ask him to stop bad-mouthing administration terrorism policy. Pshyeah. The only reason Obama should meet personally with Dick Cheney is to personally clap him in irons and haul his war-criminal ass off The Hague. (“Clap him in irons.” I love that phrase. So pirate.)

Jackassery unveiled!: The manager and assistant manager of Maricopa County, Ariz., will testify before a federal grand jury against Joe Arpaio, the unrepentantly abusive, bigoted thug currently occupying the office of sheriff.

People ask me why I think private, for-profit health insurers are a mistake: This is one reason why.

As she has done in the past on Republican apologists for Plamegate, Marcy Wheeler is laying a hurting on the Obama administration’s main academic apologist for its health-care reform plan.

Another hold on Ben Bernanke, this one from Byron Dorgan, at least until Bernanke opens the Fed’s books. Good! So good, in fact, that Teddy Partridge thinks we should replace Geithner with Dorgan. More background on Dorgan here. Remember, Dorgan is not only the person who said it would take us less than a decade to regret repealing Glass-Stegall, he’s also the guy who was warning us of the dangers of “too big to fail” — in 1974.

Love’s Labors Lebowski’ed: Nance (actually, strictly speaking, some of Nance’s commenters) and others have been bugging me for years to see The Big Lebowski. And it’s not that I don’t want to, but I just haven’t had, or made, the opportunity. But it now appears that I’m going to have to rent it or something just so that I can fully enjoy this.

Another fight the Obama team appears likely to try to back down from: ‘Net neutrality. At some point, some presidential candidate is going to have to openly run against corporate lobbyists (and win by about 20 million popular votes, so that there’s no question about a mandate), or else there will never be the political will to put these weasels back in their cages.

Shorter Ellen Malcolm, departing head of the pro-choice lobbying group Emily’s List, as channeled by Jane Hamsher: “Every single person we elected [to Congress] is determined to vote for the biggest setback to abortion rights in my lifetime, and I don’t want to be here and eat s— for it from big donors when it happens.”

And, finally, yes, I’m probably going to have to watch this: (OK, Vimeo had a trailer for the new “A-Team” movie up today that looked really, really cool, but it has been taken down.)

4 Comments

  1. Great round up! Thanks!

    Oh, and I suspect you will fully enjoy the Big Lebowski.

    Comment by Roch101 — Sunday, January 10, 2010 9:46 am @ 9:46 am

  2. Private, for-profit health insurers — a mistake? That links sounds oh-so-like The Gradys these days … http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/21/health/policy/21grady.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1. At least we’ve got Pete Correll on it now.

    Comment by Jasbro — Thursday, January 14, 2010 5:04 pm @ 5:04 pm

  3. Bare mention by the MSM of Gruber’s pimping for pay by Obama ( $400,000.00 ) while they were all over Armstrong Williams for the same sin. Oh, that was under Bush.

    Comment by Fred Gregory — Monday, January 18, 2010 12:57 pm @ 12:57 pm

  4. For one thing, MSM hates being beaten by anyone and are often slow to follow competitors’ scoops. They shouldn’t be, but they are.

    In particular, they consider it demeaning to follow up on scoops scored by blogs. They shouldn’t, but they do.

    And in this case, it was the liberal blog Firedoglake that did the beating, which makes it even worse. (Observe how you won’t see the Times/Post detailing anyone to watch the liberal blogs for stories bubbling up, like they did for conservative blogs after being caught flat-footed by the Tea Party storyline.)

    For another, Gruber, unlike Armstrong Williams, wasn’t just a pundit. He was THE go-to policy guy, THE expert, on this subject, or at least was believed to be. (I think his stuff is flawed, particularly the notion that taxing health-care benefits will lead to more take-home pay for workers, but that’s another issue.) Moreover, his relationship with the administration was no secret, even if his compensation was.

    How different was the relationship? For starters, whoever approved payments to Armstrong Williams broke the law. The consulting fees paid to Gruber were aboveboard and legal, just not adequately disclosed.

    Yes, he should have disclosed his compensation when doing op-eds, and the news media should have disclosed it, and the MSM should have manned up, acknowledged that they’d been beaten by a blogger and pursued the story. But comparing Armstrong Williams’ role and sins to Jonathan Gruber’s is NOT an apples-to-apples comparison.

    Comment by Lex — Monday, January 18, 2010 5:04 pm @ 5:04 pm


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