18 July 2009

Saturday Shuffle

Nightswimming - R.E.M.
I Can't Put My Finger On It - Ween
Love Me - The Cramps
Mary, Won't You Call My Name (live) - Morphine
Overblown - Mudhoney
Word Is Bond - House of Pain
Bleeding Warm & Newly Dead - Grade
Stop! In The Name of Love - The Supremes
Everybody Wants To Rule The World - Tears For Fears
How I Could Just Kill a Man - Cypress Hill

17 July 2009

Lugar-IN, Martinez-FL, Snowe-ME pick Sotomayor over Sessions' "wise Latina" smokescreen.

Sorry, Jeffie.

Throw that hat in the ring. I dare you.

Some things just need recollectin':
...we should stop reporting on the families of the candidates. Unless the candidates want us to.

Sarah Palin wanted the media to report on her teenage son, Track, who enlisted in the Army on Sept. 11, 2007, and soon will deploy to Iraq.

Sarah Palin did not want the media to report on her teenage daughter, Bristol, who is pregnant and unmarried.

Sarah Palin thinks that one is good for her campaign and one is not, and that the media should report only on what is good for her campaign. That is our job, and that is our duty. If that is not actually in the Constitution, it should be. (And someday may be.)

You resigned due to excess of ambition or lack of fortitude.

Shut up with any "nasty, nasty media" finger-pointing to the contrary.

14 July 2009

Is there ever really a need to post my musings 160 characters at a time?

We'll see...

11 July 2009

Saturday Shuffle

Human Behaviour - Björk
Tuck Me In - Alkaline Trio
Laughing Pain - Front Line Assembly
Afterhours - The Sisters of Mercy
God's Zoo - Death Cult
Eyes Without a Face - Billy Idol
Bad Trash - Switchblade Symphony
Wild Side - Mötley Crüe
Stowaway - Chris Connelly
Waiting For The Man - David Bowie

10 July 2009

John Ensign plays doctor with staffer, needs a pelvic exam.

Via WaPo:
The wealthy parents of Sen. John Ensign (R-Nev.) gave $96,000 last year to the staffer who was then his mistress and to her family, his attorney said yesterday.

...The gifts roughly coincided with Hampton's departure as treasurer of Ensign's political committees, as well as with the resignation of her husband, Douglas, as Ensign's chief of staff, on May 1, 2008. Ensign has said that the sexual affair with Cynthia Hampton began in December 2007 and continued until the following August.

The money was disbursed in April 2008, in eight checks of $12,000 each, with two checks each for Cynthia Hampton, her husband and their two children, Coggins said.
How bad does this look? Let me count the ways:
He's indisputably an unfaithful husband.

He apparently needs Mummy and Daddy to clean up the mess after he played Brotherhood of the Wandering Pants.

It seems painfully clear they're doing so in such a way as to skirt the IRS. gets better.

In an interview this week, Douglas Hampton also alleged that Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), a close friend of Ensign's, urged Ensign to end the affair early last year and suggested financial compensation for the Hampton family.

Coburn's office acknowledged that he counseled Ensign to end the affair but denied suggesting any financial deal.

Yesterday, Coburn told the Roll Call newspaper that he would refuse any attempts to compel him to testify in court or at the Senate ethics committee about his role. Coburn, an obstetrician, claimed a legal privilege against such testimony as his physician and religious adviser.

"I was counseling him as a physician and as an ordained deacon," Coburn said. "That is privileged communication that I will never reveal to anybody. Not to the ethics committee, not to a court of law, not to anybody."
The only thing more awesome than an elected official vowing to obstruct an ethical or criminal investigation is one doing so based on claims of privilege straight out of fantasyland.

07 July 2009

The true believers say, "You betcha!"

Even when she says, "No más."

Via CNN:
Now, four days after Sarah Palin announced that she will step down later this month as governor of Alaska, a new national poll by USA Today/Gallup indicates that seven in 10 Americans say Palin's decision had no affect on their opinion of her.

The survey also suggests a wide partisan split over whether respondents would likely vote for Palin if she decides to run for the White House in 2012. More than seven in 10 Republicans said they would be likely to vote for Palin for the presidency. That number drops to 34 percent among independents and to 17 percent among Democrats.
In a development that has Democratic strategists rushing to launder the drool stains off their shirtfronts, it looks they're riding this one all the way to the ground.

Major Kong would be proud...

04 July 2009

Saturday Shuffle

Buena (live) - Morphine
40 Grand in the Hole - Mike Doughty
Love Calls You By Your Name - Leonard Cohen
Unfamiliar - Ride
Blue Train (alternate take) - John Coltrane
Ocean Man (live) - Ween
Ordinary Guy - Joe Bataan
Outlaw - The Cult
Department of Youth - Alice Cooper
Zoo Music Girl - The Birthday Party

27 June 2009

Saturday Shuffle

Itch - Ani Difranco
Cocaine Blues (live) - Johnny Cash
I Don't Want It - Ween
Everybody Knows (live) - Concrete Blonde
I Love It Loud - Kiss
Lonesome Town - Ricky Nelson
Overture - Bad Religion
Funky Boss - Beastie Boys
Jelly Roll - Charles Mingus
Warsaw - Joy Division

King of Pop

1958 - 2009

25 June 2009

Profiles in creep-age

Via the WaPo:
Student Strip Search Illegal
By Robert Barnes

Arizona school officials violated the constitutional rights of a 13-year-old girl when they strip-searched her on the suspicion she might be hiding ibuprofen in her underwear, the Supreme Court ruled yesterday. The decision put school districts on notice that such searches are "categorically distinct" from other efforts to combat illegal drugs.

In a case that had drawn attention from educators, parents and civil libertarians across the country, the court ruled 8 to 1 that such an intrusive search without the threat of a clear danger to other students violated the Constitution's protections against unreasonable search or seizure.

Justice David H. Souter, writing perhaps his final opinion for the court, said that in the search of Savana Redding, now a 19-year-old college student, school officials overreacted to vague accusations that Redding was violating school policy by possessing the ibuprofen, equivalent to two tablets of Advil.

What was missing, Souter wrote, "was any indication of danger to the students from the power of the drugs or their quantity, and any reason to suppose that Savana was carrying pills in her underwear."

It was reasonable to search the girl's backpack and outer clothes, but Safford Middle School administrators made a "quantum leap" in taking the next step, the opinion said. "The meaning of such a search, and the degradation its subject may reasonably feel, place a search that intrusive in a category of its own demanding its own specific suspicions," Souter wrote.
Makes sense to me, as it did to most of the court.

But not all. Remember: 8-1 against the school. Wait for it...
Justice Clarence Thomas was the lone dissenter. "Judges are not qualified to second-guess the best manner for maintaining quiet and order in the school environment," he wrote.
Last I checked, judges are uniquely qualified to determine what is and is not appropriate regarding issues of search and seizure.

I'd love for Coke Can Clarence to let us know exactly what "quiet and order" is being jeopardized by the possible existence of two pills that any student could acquire about 500 of at any corner drugstore.

And yet we still have to listen to people drone on about how the president has to make sure Souter's replacement is sufficiently conservative enough. Do we really need another person on the big bench with this sophisticated a perspective:

20 June 2009

Saturday Shuffle

My Little Underground - The Jesus and Mary Chain
The Man Comes Around (early take) - Johnny Cash
Motor City Madhouse (live) - Ted Nugent
Lover, You Should've Come Over (live) - Jeff Buckley
Legalize It - Cypress Hill
Lullaby - The Cure
Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me - Morrissey
So What - Ministry
Billie Jean - Chris Cornell
Cold Wind - Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

18 May 2009

Putting the 'D' in "Duh"

Pittsburgh Steelers LB, James Harrison, on why he's declining the invitation to the White House for the customary congratulatory visit with the President:
"This is how I feel -- if you want to see the Pittsburgh Steelers, invite us when we don't win the Super Bowl. As far as I'm concerned, he [Obama] would've invited Arizona if they had won," said Harrison.
Yes, James; yes, he would have.  I have the sneaking suspicion the NFL would've given them the Lombardi trophy, too...

12 May 2009

Walking the walk

Courtesy John A. at Americablog:
An American service member, about to be discharged for being gay, penned an open letter to his commander-in-chief on CNN's Web site. Here is an excerpt:
 "As an infantry officer, I am not accustomed to begging. But I beg you today: Do not fire me. Do not fire me because my soldiers are more than a unit or a fighting force – we are a family and we support each other. We should not learn that honesty and courage leads to punishment and insult. Their professionalism should not be rewarded with losing their leader. I understand if you must fire me, but please do not discredit and insult my soldiers for their professionalism.
When I was commissioned I was told that I serve at the pleasure of the President. I hope I have not displeased anyone by my honesty. I love my job. I want to deploy and continue to serve with the unit I respect and admire. I want to continue to serve our country because of everything it stands for.
Please do not wait to repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell. Please do not fire me."
I cannot imagine a starker contrast than that which exists between Lt. Choi and the chickenhawk Keyboard Kommandoes who not only continually offer their full-throated support for putting (other) people in harm's way, but view him as a second-class citizen--if not an outright subhuman--his commitment and sacrifice be damned.

They should be ashamed of themselves and, given their truly bizarre need to attack others while declaring their patriotic--not to mention, heterosexual--bonafides so loudly, I imagine that, deep down, they are...

09 May 2009

Saturday Shuffle

Honeybear - Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Our Secret - Beat Happening
A Hazy Shade of Winter - The Bangles
Guilty of Being White - Minor Threat
Junkhead (live) - Alice In Chains
The Last Day On Earth (live) - Marilyn Manson
Hand in Glove - The Smiths
The One I Love (live) - R.E.M.
Butterfly (live) - Tori Amos
Faaip de Oiad - Tool

07 May 2009

Graham (Twit-S.C.) tilts at blogmills

Via ThinkProgress:
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Republicans would fight back hard if Democrats or liberal groups try to make the Supreme Court confirmation process about Sessions’ record, rather than about Obama’s nominee to replace Justice David Souter.

“If people try to go down that road, it’ll blow up in their face, because Jeff is a good guy,” Graham said. “My hope is that our Democratic colleagues — if you start listening to the bloggers — if we’re going to let the bloggers run the country, then the country’s best days are behind us.”

And your thoughts on, oh say, listening to admitted drug addict radio entertainers?

06 May 2009

It's raining irony

Or that could be the remnants of the glass house after all the stone throwing:
"Two Americans banned from entering the United Kingdom because the government feels they have been "stirring up hatred" responded by slamming the country's home secretary, and one of them threatened to sue her.

Radio talk show host Michael Savage and the anti-gay Rev. Fred Phelps were listed Tuesday among white supremacists and radical Islamic clerics who will not be allowed into the country.

Savage, whose conservative daily show can be heard on radio stations across America, lashed out in an audio clip on his Web site and devoted seven stories on his main page to the ban. He is listed under his real name, Michael Alan Weiner.

..."She has painted a target on my back, linking me with people who are in prison for killing people," Savage said. "How could they put Michael Savage in the same league as mass murderers when I have never avowed violence?"

Absolutely right. How could they? It's unconscionable to ban someone who has never committed a crime. Who would say such a thing?

So sayeth the Savage Weiner, himself:
"Only a devastating military blow against the hearts of Islamic terror coupled with an outright ban on Muslim immigration, laws making the dissemination of enemy propaganda illegal, and the uncoupling of the liberal ACLU can save the United States. I would also make the construction of mosques illegal in America and the speaking of English only in the streets of the United States the law." -- 11/27/2006

"What kind of religion is this? What kind of world are you living in when you let them in here with that throwback document in their hand, which is a book of hate. Don't tell me I need re-education. They need deportation. I don't need re-education. Deportation, not re-education. You can take C-A-I-R and throw 'em out of my country" -- 10/29/2007

Frankly, I don't care what bile he spews. It's his right, and he exercises it, extensively. He's even got the right to affect the gag-inducing overwrought "talking about yourself in the third person" martyr pose that he did here, all while exhorting "liberals" to remember the purpose of the First Amendment.

Just don't mistake the right to say something with the right to say it and not be roundly ridiculed as the shameless hypocrite you are...

05 May 2009

Pass the Stupid Flakes

Jim Inhofe (R-OK) is hungry:
(Gracias to Wonkette)

"There is no evidence more visible that the American people are already rebelling against the far-left agenda than Senator Arlen Specter switching parties to become a Democrat. He did this for one reason, and that is his advisers told him he couldn’t retain his Senate seat as a Republican. In other words, the same people who supported Senator Specter six years ago have soundly rejected him today.

That, my friends, sounds like 1994. The extreme liberal agenda is not sellable to the American people. Just wait and see."

Make sense?

Didn't think so.

To put it another way, in Inhofe-land--in addition to there being no global warming--forcing a trade from the Detroit Lions to the Pittsburgh Steelers is a sign that the Leos are about to reach the promised land.

Jimmy, Jimmy, Jimmy.

Snarlin' Arlen couldn't retain his seat as a Republican because he couldn't *make it* to the general, not because he couldn't *win* the general:
I am unwilling to have my twenty-nine year Senate record judged by the Pennsylvania Republican primary electorate. I have not represented the Republican Party. I have represented the people of Pennsylvania.

The agenda is perfectly sellable to the people, Jimmy...just not the mere 23% who identify as "Republican."

02 May 2009

Guess I missed the "waterboarding" part of the Sermon on the Mount...

Survey: Support for terror suspect torture differs among the faithful

Well, that stands to reason, wouldn't you think?

Just not the *way* that you'd think:

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The more often Americans go to church, the more likely they are to support the torture of suspected terrorists, according to a new survey.

More than half of people who attend services at least once a week -- 54 percent -- said the use of torture against suspected terrorists is "often" or "sometimes" justified. Only 42 percent of people who "seldom or never" go to services agreed, according to the analysis released Wednesday by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life.

"Differs?" That's what comes to mind with those numbers?

Someone needs a refresher on headline writing.

Really curious as to the sort of circumstances where you apply the ol' "WWJD" test and the answer comes up beatings, sleep deprivation, and "simulated" drowning...

Elections...still having consequences

This is a prime example of what we donated, canvassed, and voted for:
Obama Announces Souter's Retirement

In a surprising move, President Obama personally announced the retirement of Justice David H. Souter from the Supreme Court shortly after 3 p.m. on Friday, arriving unannounced into the White House briefing room. He praised the tenure of Mr. Souter, saying that he served with integrity and “consistently defied labels.”

“I will seek someone with a sharp, independent mind and a record of excellence and integrity,” Mr. Obama said in brief remarks at the podium. He added that he would “seek somebody who shares my respect for constitutional values.”
The 22 percent party's "the President's judicial nominees deserve an up-or-down vote" rhetoric goes back in the drawer in 5...4...3...2...

Saturday Shuffle

3000 - Dr. Octagon
Under the Milky Way - The Church
Catholic Block - Sonic Youth
Rest of Our Lives - Mike Ness
Uh, Zoom Zip (live) - Soul Coughing
Hotel California - Pennywise
11 Ghosts II - Nine Inch Nails
Power Trip - Soundgarden
Rodeo In Joliet - The Jesus Lizard
Bleeder - Hot Water Music

01 May 2009


Maybe it's just too many medical drama reruns, but the phrase "bleeding out" comes to mind:
Earlier this week a Washington Post poll made a big splash because it found that only 21 percent self-identify as Republicans. The abysmally low number got pundits and reporters talking about whether the GOP is shrinking to the point of irrelevance.

Now we have another poll that finds that the number of self-identified Republicans has dropped even lower: 20 percent.

My handy Plum Line calculator informs me that this means exactly one-fifth of adults identify themselves as Republican.
And thus, with a spring in my step and a warm fuzzy in my heart, I leave for a well-deserved weekend out of town...


Numbers make me smile. Via The Hill:
Less than one in four identify as Republican
By Reid Wilson

Less than a quarter of all voters call themselves Republicans, a number that has dropped precipitously over the past six years, according to a new analysis.

In more than 7,000 interviews conducted by the Pew Research Center in 2009, just 23 percent of voters self-identify as members of the Grand Old Party. That's down from 30 percent as recently as 2004, and the trend shows no signs of slowing.

In the first four months of the year, Pew researchers found the number of self-identified Republicans dropping from 25 percent in January to just 22 percent in April.
Alienation and isolation: the keys to winning *any* election.

29 April 2009

Mitchy, Mitchy, Mitchy...

You need to make up your mind. Is this a local issue
"Obviously, we are not happy that Senator Specter has decided to become a Democrat," Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) told reporters, attempting to minimize the blow. "This is not a national story. This is a Pennsylvania story," McConnell said.

or a sign of the apocalypse?
"I think the threat to the country presented by this defection really relates to the issue of whether or not in the United States of America our people want the majority to have whatever it wants without restraint, without a check or a balance," McConnell said during a Tuesday afternoon press availability.

The question is, Mitchy, do our people see one party managing to so marginalizing itself that it slips below the magic filibuster number of 41 as "a threat to the country?"

My guess is "no."

Someone needs to clue ol' Mitch into the fact that but what threatens his directionless, ever more extremist party does not necessarily threaten the nation.

And like that--[poof]--he was gone...

Specter Leaves GOP, Shifting Senate Balance
Democrats Are Poised to Hold A Powerful 60-Seat Majority

By Paul Kane, Chris Cillizza and Shailagh Murray

Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania provided a boost to President Obama's ambitious legislative agenda yesterday by abandoning the Republican Party in the face of shifting political realities at home and an aggressive courtship by the White House and party leaders.

In an announcement that shocked colleagues on both sides of the aisle, Specter said he had become increasingly uncomfortable as a moderate in a party dominated by conservatives and would join the Democrats. He bluntly admitted that his decision was tied to his belief that he could not win reelection as a Republican next year.
I love the smell of a sinking ship in the morning...

21 March 2009

Saturday Shuffle

Guilty of Being White - Minor Threat
Sunday Bloody Sunday (live) - U2
1,000,000 - R.E.M.
Ups and Downs - Saves The Day
Don't Cry - Guns N' Roses
Blowing It - Dinosaur Jr.
Let's Get It Started - Richard Cheese
I Won't Be Left - Teagan and Sarah
Prove Yourself - Radiohead
Purple [Sasha v The Light] - Paul Oakenfold

20 March 2009


i thinks ur dooin it wrong:
Leno: "Now, are they going to put a basketball -- I imagine the bowling alley has been just burned and closed down."

Obama: "No, no. I've been practicing bowling."

Leno: "Really? Really?"

Obama: "I bowled a 129 -- "


Leno: "Oh, no, that's very good. Yeah. No, that's very good for a -- "

Obama: "It was like Special Olympics or something."
Jay doesn't show up at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue with tips on how to save the economy, so let's not roll into his studio and try to make teh funny, OK, Mr. President?

Apology or not, you cannot make that joke in that venue.


Ask Axelrod, he'll tell you the same thing. Once the doctors surgically remove his hand from his forehead after the atomic facepalm that probably followed your late night mirth-storm, that is.

People are inspired by you as a leader, we don't NEED you as an entertainer, too. We've got plenty of people to take care of that. You want to entertain me, let's start with getting Michigan's unemployment back into single digits. If you want applause, that's the way to get it.

09 March 2009

I ♥ McCain

Meghan, that is:
"...certain individuals continue to perpetuate negative stereotypes about Republicans. Especially Republican women. Who do I feel is the biggest culprit? Ann Coulter. I straight up don’t understand this woman or her popularity. I find her offensive, radical, insulting, and confusing all at the same time. But no matter how much you or I disagree with her, the cult that follows Coulter cannot be denied. She is a New York Times best-selling author and one of the most notable female members of the Republican Party. She was one of the headliners at the recent CPAC conference (but when your competition is a teenager who has a dream about the Republican Party and Stephen Baldwin, it’s not really saying that much).

...Everything about her is extreme: her voice, her interview tactics, and especially the public statements she makes about liberals. Maybe her popularity stems from the fact that watching her is sometimes like watching a train wreck."
Looks like Meg just jumped, headlong, into the pot at the Republican cannibalism convention...

23 February 2009


Best. Acceptance. Speech. Evar.
"It's so heavy," said Kato of the award. A native of Japan, he struggled with his English in good humor before a star-studded audience. "Thank you very much. Thank you, my supporters. Thank you, all my staff. Thank you, academy. . . . Thank you, my company. Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto." -- Kunio Kato, Best Animated Short Winner

21 February 2009

Saturday Shuffle

Coming Down [Butchered] - The Cult
The Mark Has Been Made (live) - Nine Inch Nails
You Can't Quit Me, Baby (live) - Queens Of The Stone Age
Light My Way - Audioslave
Rolling - Soul Coughing
Spanish Blue - Aqua Velvets
Bellybone - Robert Bradley's Blackwater Surprise
Making Plans For Nigel - Primus
Safe - Kittie
The Boy With The Thorn In His Side - The Smiths

15 February 2009

Axelrod gets it

“This town talks to itself and whips itself into a frenzy with its own theories that are completely at odds with what the rest of America is thinking,” he says. Once the frenzy got going, it didn’t matter that most polls showed support for Obama and his economic package: “If you watched cable TV, you’d see our support was plummeting, we were in trouble. It was almost like living in a parallel universe.”

For Axelrod, the moral is “not just that Washington is too insular but that the American people are a lot smarter than people in Washington think.”
Frank Rich is firing on all cylinders, today.

Overdosing on this culture can be fatal. Because Republicans are isolated in that parallel universe and believe all the noise in its echo chamber, they are now as out of touch with reality as the “inevitable” Clinton campaign was before it got clobbered in Iowa.

The G.O.P. doesn’t recognize that it emerged from the stimulus battle even worse off than when it started. That obliviousness gives the president the opening to win more ambitious policy victories than last week’s. Having checked the box on attempted bipartisanship, Obama can now move in for the kill.
Ah, the pundit class.

I need to find me the kind of job where my--assuredly generous--compensation is in no way impacted by my being so consistently wrong on the very areas and topics I allegedly focus on.

A McDonald's cashier wouldn't last a week with a similar track record for accuracy.

14 February 2009

Saturday Shuffle

Valentine Edition

Love Me Do - The Beatles
Strangelove - Depeche Mode
Radar Love - Golden Earring
Love Song - Tesla
Love Me Tender - Elvis Presley
Friday, I'm In Love - The Cure
Lover, You Should've Come Over - Jeff Buckley
Love Bites - Def Leppard
Who Do You Love? - Bo Diddley
Love In An Elevator - Aerosmith


Sea of Love - Tom Waits

09 February 2009

Talk about tone-deaf

Someone fetch me my ear trumpet:
Geithner Said to Have Prevailed on the Bailout

WASHINGTON— The Obama administration’s new plan to bail out the nation’s banks was fashioned after a spirited internal debate that pitted the Treasury secretary, Timothy F. Geithner, against some of the president’s top political hands.

In the end, Mr. Geithner largely prevailed in opposing tougher conditions on financial institutions that were sought by presidential aides, including David Axelrod, a senior adviser to the president, according to administration and Congressional officials.

Mr. Geithner, who will announce the broad outlines of the plan on Tuesday, successfully fought against more severe limits on executive pay for companies receiving government aid.
Because with the economy crashing and unemployment and foreclosures soaring, successfully fighting pay limitations for millionaires is JUST the scalp you want for your wall.

Good luck selling this to people whose "night out" (assuming they can still have one at all) involves the Golden Arches.

Somebody needs to remind Timmeh, here, that if you're going to stand up for millionaires, at least stand up for *competent* millionaires. These are the folks that got us here, in the first place, not the ones swooping to the rescue. If someone drives the Caddy off the cliff, you take his keys, not give him a Rolls with the beaded seat cover.

Team Obama better get rid of this seeming inaugural hangover, soon.

07 February 2009

Saturday Shuffle

My Body Is A Cage - Arcade Fire
Wolves - Kittie
The Drifter - Clutch
People Equals Shit - Richard Cheese
100,000 Years (live) - Kiss
Online - Gnarls Barkley
To All The Girls - Wyclef Jean
Lorca Not Orca - Coil
Wanted Man (live) - Johnny Cash
At This Moment - Billy Vera and the Beaters

01 February 2009

Pretend like you've been here before

Jack. Ass.

Daschle Delayed Revealing Tax Glitch

Thomas A. Daschle waited nearly a month after being nominated to be secretary of health and human services before informing Barack Obama that he had not paid years of back taxes for the use of a car and driver provided by a wealthy New York investor

Daschle, one of Obama's earliest and most ardent campaign supporters, paid $140,000 to the U.S. Treasury on Jan. 2 and about two days later informed the White House and the Senate Finance Committee, according to an account provided by his spokeswoman and confirmed by the Obama administration.

Although Daschle had known since June 2008 that he needed to correct his tax returns, he never expected the amount to be such a "jaw-dropping" sum and "thought it was being taken care of" by his accountant, spokeswoman Jenny Backus said.
A month?

Daschle spent 1979-2005 in either the House or Senate. 26 years on the Hill and he didn't think $140K was important enough to mention before then?

In this economy?

However much truth to it there may be, no one is going to accept "I thought my accountant was taking care of it" as an explanation. Don't know about you, but a "correction" a fraction of that size would have me either in jail or in whatever circle of audit hell the IRS saw fit to put me.

Obama's team is clearly responsible for proper vetting, but it's a mighty tough thing to do when the vet-ee forgets to talk about the pile of taxes he forgot to pay. And Daschle has no excuse for forgetting something else: this isn't about him, it's about the credibility of the administration. Whatever happens, he can go right back and snuggle up to the health care industry--where he's been for years. Obama now needs to try and navigate the laundry list of calamities before him with the egg ol' tax dodge Tommy threw on his face.

If this were anyone else, his ass would be--and still should be--gone.

31 January 2009

Saturday Shuffle

Pancake - Tori Amos
2HB - Roxy Music
Animal Mass - Machines of Loving Grace
Ed Is Dead - The Pixies
Almost Cried - Duke Ellington
Ticket To Ride - The Beatles
Hot Wire My Heart - Sonic Youth
Last Night - Lush
Roxy (live) - Concrete Blonde
Reprise - DeVotchKa

29 January 2009

Profiles in Cowardice

Please call the Congressional switchboard if anyone finds a missing spine:
(CNN) – Republican Rep. Phil Gingrey of Georgia apologized Wednesday for criticizing conservative hosts Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hanity, assuring his supporters that "I am one of you."
...The mea culpa comes one day after Gingrey appeared to take issue with Limbaugh's recent criticism of congressional Republicans. The conservative radio host said GOP leaders weren't adequately challenging President Obama on his proposed stimulus package.

"I mean, it's easy if you're Sean Hannity or Rush Limbaugh or even sometimes Newt Gingrich to stand back and throw bricks," Gingrey told the Politico. "You don't have to try to do what's best for your people and your party."

The comments, published in a Politico story Tuesday afternoon, immediately prompted a flood of calls from aggrieved conservatives to Gingrey's congressional office, prompting the Georgia Republican to issue a clarification reasserting his conservative bona fides.

I always wondered what it takes to "aggrieve" a conservative.
Not that much, apparently.
Pathetic that an elected official falls over himself to bow and scrape just for telling the truth: that, unlike our representatives (and most other people in society), bloviating gasbags like Limbaugh and Hannity have no accountability for what they do.  These hacks don't have to accomplish a damn thing except agitate from the sidelines--which they do purely out of their own self-serving interest to keep their ratings up, which sells commercial time, which lines their pockets.
And these blindly contrarian, foot-stomping, overgrown children are the people that "conservatives" find to be above criticism?
A telling choice of sacred cows, to be sure.

24 January 2009

Saturday Shuffle

There She Goes, My Beautiful World - Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds
You and Whose Army - Radiohead
The Times They Are A-Changin' - Bob Dylan
Lucretia, My Reflection (Extended Single Mix) - The Sisters of Mercy
Cease - American Lesion
Sorrow - David Bowie
Battersea - Hooverphonic
If This Is It - Huey Lewis & The News
I Can Do Anything (Delacratic) - De La Soul
She (live) - Kiss

23 January 2009


Obama has them.
Obama to GOP: ‘I Won’

The top congressional leaders from both parties gathered at the White House for a working discussion over the shape and size of President Barack Obama’s economic stimulus plan. The meeting was designed to promote bipartisanship.

But Obama showed that in an ideological debate, he’s not averse to using a jab.

Challenged by one Republican senator over the contents of the package, the new president, according to participants, replied: “I won.”

Kind of puts the "Chief" back in chief executive, doesn't it?

Now I cast ballots for both of them, but I really can't imagine hearing Al Gore or John Kerry saying anything like that. And unfortunately, since 2006, we haven't heard anything remotely like that from our Congressional leadership, either.

This is the first time in recent memory that we've seen any Democratic politician show some confidence in the confidence the people showed in him/her. Candidates win elections for a variety of reasons, but chief among them is that the people want you to do what you say you'll do. Unfortunately, the Reids and Pelosis can never seem to remember that simple fact, choosing instead to huff and puff and then fold like a card table.

There's a new sheriff in town.

Hopefully the deputies finally learn a thing or two...

22 January 2009

Elections have consequences, Part II

The end of another "long national nightmare":

Obama signs order to close Guantanamo Bay facility

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Promising to return America to the "moral high ground" in the war on terrorism, President Obama issued three executive orders Thursday to demonstrate a clean break from the Bush administration, including one requiring that the Guantanamo Bay detention facility be closed within a year.

...A second executive order formally bans torture by requiring that the Army field manual be used as the guide for terrorism interrogations. That essentially ends the Bush administration's CIA program of enhanced interrogation methods.

...A third executive order establishes an interagency task force to lead a systematic review of detention policies and procedures and a review of all individual cases.

This week keeps getting better and better.

It was all well and good to be excited about the prospect of things being different, but it's something else to actually see steps being taken to get us back to that whole "nation of laws," thing.

And, it may be petty, but it puts a grin on my face to think about the wailing and gnashing of teeth that's going on in the right wing circles that think the scripts from 24 represent sound policy plans.

20 January 2009

Elections have consequences

Hitting the ground running. Me likey.
Obama Halts All Regulations Pending Review

WASHINGTON - One of President Barack Obama's first acts Tuesday was to put the brakes on all pending regulations that the Bush administration tried to push through in its waning days.

The order went out shortly after Obama was inaugurated president, in a memorandum signed by new White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel.

Former President George W. Bush's administration moved into overdrive in the last year or so on a host of new regulatory proposals. Now the Obama administration will review everything that is still pending.

Can I say again how good "Former President George W. Bush," sounds?

Theres a helluva lot of garbage to clean up after the last eight years. These last frantic tweaks and alterations are but the top of the heap. You have to start somewhere, though.

Good to see Obama putting the work gloves on from the get-go and showing he's not looking to easy into things.

Winning is a beautiful thing




Has a hell of a ring to it, doesn't it? Almost as good as "former President George W. Bush."

17 January 2009

Saturday Shuffle

Anything, Anything (I'll Give You) - Dramarama
Change - Killing Joke
Transylvanian Transmissions, Pt. 1 - Rob Zombie
Norwegian Wood - The Beatles
Falls Apart - Stabbing Westward
Wrong To Love You - Chris Isaak
What's Going On - Marvin Gaye
Duel of the Iron Mic - GZA
Vodevil - Marilyn Manson
Do Your Thing - Basement Jaxx

14 January 2009


Ricardo Montalbán, 1920 - 2009

11 January 2009

In case you couldn't see what the problem is

This might help you put your finger on it. From The Politico:
GOP sees Franken as top public enemy

With only a longshot court appeal standing in the way of Democrat Al Franken’s election to the Senate, Republicans are gritting their teeth and bracing for the arrival of a new senator whose every utterance will sound like nails on a chalkboard to them.

While Sen. Norm Coleman (R-Minn.) has filed suit to contest the results of a disputed recount process that turned his narrow lead into a 225-vote deficit, his likely defeat stands to turn Franken, the polarizing former “Saturday Night Live” writer, into the senator who launched a thousand direct mail fundraising appeals.

“I don’t know if we’ve ever had an opponent who is so disliked by Republicans as Al Franken,” said Minnesota Republican Party Chair Ron Carey, who cautioned that Coleman’s election challenge could still turn the results back his way. “It’s one thing to lose to an honorable opponent, but Al Franken is not considered an honorable opponent by Minnesota Republicans.”

“It’s going to be hard for Franken to be very effective with any Republicans, in terms of having any credibility with us, just because he’s been so nasty in the past,” (Marty) Seifert said. “He certainly has callous and very partisan behavior in the past that is beyond the pale.”

According to Carleton College political scientist Steven Schier, Franken’s record as a “flamboyant and aggressive partisan” would make him ripe for criticism back home.

“I think it’s impossible to overstate the hostility Minnesota Republicans feel toward Al Franken,” Schier said. “He will be a very useful fundraising tool.”

Republicans outside Minnesota are equally apoplectic when it comes to Franken. Prominent conservative Rush Limbaugh, who Franken mocked in the title of one of his books, has already jabbed Franken on his radio show, telling listeners in December that Franken “won’t quit [the Senate race] because he doesn’t know how to get a real job…He’s a pathetic figure.”

...Matt Entenza, the former DFL Party leader in the Minnesota House, said Franken had defied expectations in the Senate race by restraining his sense of humor and campaigning as a sober workhorse.

“The struggle for the campaign was always trying to communicate that he was a serious guy, and in some ways I think they toned him down almost too much, tried to be almost too serious,” he explained. “You would see local TV anchors giving him questions that were designed to give him an opportunity for a humorous response. He would give a very serious, wonkish policy response.”

Former DFL Sen. Mark Dayton agreed: “He had to show people that he was really serious about issues, that he had a depth of policy understanding.”

Tim Penny, a former DFL congressman who joined the Minnesota Independence Party to run for governor in 2002, said he expected Franken to be hyper-cautious about reviving concerns about his past career as a comedian and political provocateur.

“I expect that on Capitol Hill he will be a very serious legislator – almost to the extreme,” Penny said."

Economic disaster, ever-increasing instability in the Middle East, energy crisis and the GoOPers are focusing their frustration on



A (likely) freshman senator, with no clout, whatsoever, all because he used to say nasty things in his books. Congress as "Washington Junior High" at its finest.

By all means, focus on Franken for his barbs and the desire to fundraise and eventually oust him. All he has to do is stick with his metamorphosis into policy wonk and he'll be working for the people, while they'll be grinding an axe for the past.

See how *that* plays at the polls...

10 January 2009

Saturday Shuffle

Angel - Masive Attack
Wish - Cranes
Nothing's Changed - Chris Isaak
Part of the Process - Morcheeba
Tic (live) - Helmet
Taboo - Treat Her Right
All Mine (live) - Portishead
Goin' Out West - Tom Waits
Departure - R.E.M.
777 - Danzig
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