Sunday Sunset Open Thread

I’m starting a regular Sunday sunset thing at Progressive Blue and I was wondering if your interested. There is plenty of text as a sunset appetizer.

Of course the number one news item today was the greatest pass interference call I’ve ever seen in regular season football. But a few other things happened today besides the Jets Mile High win!

Below have a Sunday couch potato review and a sundown. What do you hear? What do you see?    

Did you see Matt Taibbi’s More Tea Party Hilarity? The often heard claim that extreme conservatives shouldn’t talk about cutting government programs because they claimed some is a pretty invalid argument but Taibbi got to the heart of the matter.

I can’t even tell you how many people I interviewed at Tea Party events who came up with one version or another of the Joe Miller defense. Yes, I’m on Medicare, but… I needed it! It’s those other people who don’t need it who are the problem!

Or: Yes, it’s true, I retired from the police/military/DPW at 54 and am on a fat government pension that you and your kids are going to be paying for for the next forty years, while I sit in my plywood-paneled living room in Florida watching Fox News, gobbling Medicare-funded prescription medications, and railing against welfare queens. But I worked hard for those bennies! Not like those other people!

Earlier in the week there was a positive government piece, of course not the U.S. Government. In Foreign Policy: The Parisian Trend We Should Adopt there is another explanation for the lack of direction.  

In today’s Washington Post, Ruth Marcus, has an excellent piece  entitled “The True Conservatives: Britain’s Realists vs. America’s Wishful Thinkers” in which she wishes that she could summon up Christine O’Donnell-like witchcraft to transform American conservatives into British Tories. She makes a powerful point. But she does not go far enough. Because if we are conjuring here, let’s transform the Democrats too, please.

While David Cameron and Nicolas Sarkozy are finding that austerity is a very tough sell, they are at least making a serious effort at grappling with it. Here in the United States we are pushing the food around on our plates. We are making non-proposals wrapped in partisan rhetoric sold via Madison Avenue television commercials that essentially make the case that we have problems and beyond telling you that it’s the other guy’s fault, we’re not going to do anything about it. Listen closely, those aren’t just the usual political ads you are tuning out, that buzzing noise is the death rattle of U.S. leadership.

Are you ready for Obama 2.0? In today’s New York Times magazine there is plenty of food for thought in Education of a President. It starts out with a new look for the Oval Office, then gets as exciting as possible with Presidential navel gazing and staff belly aching. “It’s a communication problem.”

In their darkest moments, White House aides wonder aloud whether it is even possible for a modern president to succeed, no matter how many bills he signs. Everything seems to conspire against the idea: an implacable opposition with little if any real interest in collaboration, a news media saturated with triviality and conflict, a culture that demands solutions yesterday, a societal cynicism that holds leadership in low regard. Some White House aides who were ready to carve a new spot on Mount Rushmore for their boss two years ago privately concede now that he cannot be another Abraham Lincoln  after all. In this environment, they have increasingly concluded, it may be that every modern president is going to be, at best, average.


In The Week In Review there was Return of the Secret Donors. A look at how long ago and why secret campaign donations were banned followed by some guesswork about the return of under the table influence. Do you recall “Rose Mary’s Baby” or the chief executive of Phillips Petroleum, pleading guilty to making illegal corporate donations during the post-Watergate prosecutions? I forgot but it was nice to see Fred Wertheimer’s name in print. Not so nice hearing a prediction about secret money from a Republican strategist “This year is practice for 2012.”

As to all the foreign money influencing elections that is being touted by Democrats and denied by Republicans, I found this story about the foreign influence that government can address to be interesting. It’s always the little guy you need to worry about, like when an immigrant gets confused and thinks it is a civic duty to vote, go after them like gangbusters.  

For opinions, Frank Rich offered The Rage Won’t End on Election Day, a story of hatred being passed down from elected officials to the people.

So far neither party has offered a comprehensive antidote to our economic pain. The Democrats have fallen short, and the cynics leading the G.O.P. haven’t so much as tried. We shouldn’t be surprised that this year even a state as seemingly well-mannered as Connecticut has produced a senatorial candidate best known for marching into a wrestling ring to gratuitously kick a man in the groin.

The cover story on CBS Sunday Morning focused on someone who is further up the pecking order than poor nonwhites, the immigrants and Rick Santelli’s ordinary American “losers” in the Republican hatred category. Sounded like a bunch of blanks to me but the explanation in Nancy Pelosi Fires Back for her cat herding skills was touching.  

“There was always coalition building to do around five kids,” said her daughter Christine Pelosi. “‘What do you want to eat?’ ‘What movie do you want to see?’ ‘What activity do you want to do?'”

According to Christine, it’s all come in handy: “Yeah, there’s always competing agenda and differences, even among children.”

“Who knew that that was training for being Speaker, huh?” asked Braver.

“That’s right – multiple caucuses, multiple ideas and backgrounds and talents,” said Christine.

Credit where credit is due, the Lady of the House.

Does she worry that she could end up being just a footnote in history?

“I’m not a footnote; I’m the first woman Speaker of the House and we passed the most comprehensive health insurance reform,” Pelosi said. “I didn’t come here about me. I came here about policy and the issues. Are you saying, would I rather not have passed the health care bill so I could keep this office? Never. Never,” she smiled.

There was plenty more on television today. The highlight had to be the look Cat Greenleaf’s dachshund gave Vincent Pastore for singing “Mr. Cellophane” on Talk Stoop.

The CBS Sunday Morning segment on Mark Twain telling it like it is a hundred years later has Lewis Black worried. Mark Twain is releasing his autobiography a hundred years after his death and while it all sounds far too liberal for the present day, at least Mark Twain won’t have to listen to the Fox News review.

On Meet the Press there was a pretty interseting discussion between David Gregory and Robert Gibbs. As always David Gregory hammered the Republican on tax cuts fitting in with a balanced budget. Ken Buck squirmed out Michael Bennet blew his chance but still Bennet sounded better than Buck.

Even Maria Bartiromo offered a little equal time for the rich paying taxes in a respectful interview with George Soros on The Wall Street Journal Report.

This Week with Christine O’Donnell vs. Chris Coons must have been pure comedy gold but who watched?  There was a little barking up the wrong tree, Christine O’Donnell to National GOP: Help Me!

And after the very great Jet game 60 Minutes wasn’t to dull either. First an I/P pie fight, then Homeless Veterans seeking help followed by an historic 1906 film of San Francisco’s Market Street just days before the earthquake.

That’s it out of me. Here’s a few of tonight’s sunset.  A good start.

And a good finish.

Action Alert: Unless you live very far south this it the final weeks of Farmer’s Markets and they could use some money for the winter. Why not try your hand at Preserving Apples?

What’s going on in your neck of the woods?


Is the Pony/Pie/Hide rating system too cutsie?

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    • Eddie C on October 18, 2010 at 4:14 am

    I took a nice walk in the park between the talk shows and the fantastic Jets Victory.

    It was a beautiful day here in the Bronx.  

    • Eddie C on October 18, 2010 at 4:42 am

  1. That was a heavy duty chemtrail sunset though.

    As to “How will Obama 2.0 be?” —


        Deadman walking

        Waiting for impeachment


    Sorry, but…

  2. Aqua buddha.

    Uh, huh, a ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

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