October 13, 2008 archive

Finally A Heartwarming ‘Wasilla Alaska’ Story

Wasilla, nobody knew about that little Alaskan town unless from Alaska. Wasilla’s favorite daughter, what is it now 5 or 6 weeks ago few ever heard the name Sarah Palin and apparently those that did didn’t know much about her either, even Alaskans are quickly finding out that apparently they didn’t really get rid of the corruption and incompetence in the Alaskan Governors office when electing Sarah who ran on cleaning it up and honest government.

Now Wasilla and Sarah palin are well known in the lowere 49, and yes Hawaii is below Alaska despite where some maps of the U.S. put it.

But this isn’t about the hockey mom nor really about Wasilla except for one of the residents of.

Four at Four

  1. The NY Times reports Senator Barack Obama expands his economic plans to include “proposals to spur new jobs, to give Americans penalty-free access to retirement savings to help them through the downturn, to urge a 90-day moratorium on home foreclosures and to lend money to strapped local and state governments.”

    The main new proposals would:

    – for the next two years, give businesses a $3,000 income-tax credit for each new full-time employee they hire above the number in their current workforce;

    – allow savers with tax-favored Individual Retirement Accounts and 401(k)’s to withdraw 15 percent of those retirement savings, up to a maximum of $10,000, without paying a tax penalty as the law currently requires for withdrawals before age 59 and a half;

    – bar financial institutions that take advantage of the Treasury’s rescue plan from foreclosing on the mortgages of any homeowners who are making “good-faith efforts” to make payments;

    – direct the Treasury and the Federal Reserve to create a temporary facility for loans to state and local governments, similar to the Fed’s new arrangement to loan corporations money by buying their commercial paper, which are the I.O.U.s that help businesses with daily operating expenses like payrolls.

    Meanwhile, McClatchy Newspapers report the U.S. Treasury will buy stock in banks.

    Treasury’s new point man for the bank rescue program, Neel Kashkari, gave his first address on Monday, laying out just how the agency will carry out a $700 billion rescue plan passed by Congress last month. He confirmed taking equity positions in struggling banks is near the top of the list.

    “We are designing a standardized program to purchase equity in a broad array of financial institutions,” said Kashkari, said in remarks prepared for delivery. “As with other programs, the equity purchase program will be voluntary and designed with attractive terms to encourage participation from healthy institutions. It will also encourage firms to raise new private capital to complement public capital.”

    And the NY Times reports European nations move on plans to shore up banks and somewhat ominously —

    “Sometimes it does take a crisis for people to agree that what is obvious and should have been done years ago can no longer be postponed,” the British prime minister, Gordon Brown, said in London in a speech calling for the adoption of a new Bretton Woods-style agreement among major countries. “We must now create the right new financial architecture for the global age.”

Four at Four continues with a shift in the military to an “indirect approach” to counter terrorism, an update from Iraq, and Paul Krugman.

UN Drafts Green New Deal For President Obama

There has been some debate over the impact of this financial crisis on President Obama’s ability to address global warming. Well, UN leaders and top economists are not buying the can-not-do meme. Instead, they are drafting a “Green New Deal” to “create millions of jobs, revive the world economy, slash poverty and avert environmental disaster, as the financial markets plunge into their deepest crisis since the Great Depression.”

Goldman Sachs Socialism

2.4 trillion dollars up in smoke since the Democratic Party/Bush bailout of Wall Street, just the beginning of a global systemic financial meltdown?

October 13, 2008 – 3 min 54 sec

Pepe Escobar: World markets and top economists dismiss the Wall Street bailout

World markets on the verge of panic continue to dismiss the Bush/Paulson Wall Street bailout plan – despite White House rhetoric and supposedly concerted action by the G-7, the group of leading industrialized economies. Top economists criticize the mechanics of the plan, which concentrates too much power on Secretary Paulson and his Goldman Sachs colleagues; warn of an incoming systemic crisis; and point out the taboo topics nobody is talking about: the US budget deficit and the US military budget.

Newest Nobel Prize Winner: “Republicans … Party of Stupid”

Paul Krugman, the winner of the 2008 Nobel Prize for Economics, penned an article a few months ago: “Know-Nothing Politics“.  

the debate on energy policy has helped me find the words for something I’ve been thinking about for a while. Republicans, once hailed as the “party of ideas,” have become the party of stupid.

For Krugman, the Republican embrace and promotion of Drillusion exemplified how “know-nothingism” had become revered within the Republican Party.  “The party’s de facto slogan has become: “Real men don’t think things through.”” ANd, “In the case of oil, this takes the form of pretending that more drilling would produce fast relief at the gas pump.”  

Krugman called the Republican leadership to task for promoting a policy that flew in the face of facts and expert knowledge.  His real fear was the power of this “dumb” approach to energy when it came to potentially swaying votes. Looking at this debate and the difference between lying and confusion, Krugman came to this generalized conclusion:

In any case, remember this the next time someone calls for an end to partisanship, for working together to solve the country’s problems. It’s not going to happen – not as long as one of America’s two great parties believes that when it comes to politics, stupidity is the best policy.

Republicanism in Tatters: Break Their Backs

H/T to kos for the framing

The Economy, War, and Social Conservatism.

These are the three cornerstones of Republicanism. These are the three things that they have pushed and traditionally won elections on. These are the three things that are now LOSING them the election. As I and others (most notably Greenwald) have pointed out, Republicanism had its once in a lifetime chance, and blew it. They have been exposed.


For the last decade they have essentially controlled American politics and the American government using these three cornerstones to appeal to voters. Once they achieved the power that they were willing to lie, cheat and steal elections for and were able to walk the talk….they just plain didn’t.

The Economy: Republicans got nearly everything they wanted from the government in regards to the economy. Deregulation, tax cuts on the wealthy and corporations, and the acceptance of highly questionable practices as normal. Under their leadership and policies….well just look around. The Republicans got everything they wanted and this IS the result of Republicans running their unfettered economy.

Next up, the myth of Republicans as “Fiscal Conservatives” and “Small Government:”

From Meteor Blades

National Debt When Jimmy Carter

…arrived at the White House:

$660 billion.

Added during Carter’s four years: $337 billion.

Added during Ronald Reagan’s eight years: $1.6 trillion.

Added during George H. W. Bush’s four years: $1.6 trillion.

Added during Bill Clinton’s eight years: $1.5 trillion.

Added during George W. Bush’s seven years, nine months: $4.5 trillion.

Portion of the $9.5 trillion added to the national debt during the past 31 years and seven months that came during Republican presidencies: $7.7 trillion.

Percentage of that $7.7 trillion added during George W. Bush’s two terms: 58%.

Could somebody explain again what “fiscal conservative” means?

Given nearly unlimited power, The Republicans spend MORE than Democrats. But instead of giving the money back to The People in the form of social programs and infrastructure etc, they give it to their cronies. The Republicans used their power …to bankrupt America. Republicanism = Greed. The Republican economic theories have failed.


I read this in a doctor’s waiting room when I was all of 18 years old, in 1982. The year before I had seen Sizwe Bansi is dead in Ashland. Nothing on earth had moved me like that. The idea of a writer who could do such a thing – such bloody, piss covered, vibrant madness and craft — Athol Fugard, I thought, was my hero. Indeed, I doubted he walked, if asked then I am sure I would have insisted the man simply floated, perhaps propelling himself with soft jabs of a pen. So, sitting there…when I saw this in the New Yorker…an interview! – I had to read it. I am now 44; I think of it almost every day.

OT: Dog Question

Has anyone ever adopted a dog rescued from a puppy mill?  Are there any special concerns about these dogs?

Background: I’m considering getting a dog and would prefer to get one who needs adoption than buying one from a breeder.  But I want to make the choice carefully.

Thanks to anyone who replies.

Straight Talk Express Is At My School! Oh Boy!

Cross-posted at Free Speech Zone


Had to use a photobucket pic because we’re not allowed within 7847249865298735 ft. of it.

They raised my tuition for this bullshit?

Sacred cows

They’re loading us into the boxcars now,

Loading, lowing, lowering,

For we’re on our way to the killing fields.

People are starving.

Don’t think about our end, for

Why were we born if not to be


The Five Stages Of Republican Grief

Okay, yes, I’m gloating. I admit it. I own it. But after eight years of the GOP running this country into the ground a bit of schadenfreude is cathartic. For background the Kubler-Ross five stages of grief, see this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/K…


In a phone interview before headlining the Indiana Republican Party’s fundraising dinner in Indianapolis on Thursday night, Graham said Hoosiers are too smart to vote for Obama.

Democrats, he said, “can’t win fairly out here.”

Asked whether Democrats could win without cheating, Graham said, “No. They can’t win fairly out here ’cause their agenda is so far removed from the average Hoosier.

“We could lose, I suppose, if they cheat us out of it,” Graham said of Indiana’s 11 electoral votes. “I think the only way we lose a state like North Carolina or Indiana is to get cheated out of it.”

link: http://www.journalgazette.net/…

Open Thread


Mrs. Peacock in the Conservatory with the Thread.

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