Friday, October 14, 2011

The Most Indebted Country In The World

Dealbook: A Call for a Write-Down on Irish Debt

Oct. 14 (New York Times) -- DUBLIN -- A major write-down on Greek debt appears to be inevitable. But what about Ireland?

Bailed-out Irish banks continue to pay interest to their bondholders on 75 billion euros in debt -- about half the country's gross domestic product -- and despite Ireland's improved economic performance over the past year, many here believe that these institutions should suffer the same haircut that the banks holding Greek debt are expected to absorb.

"We need to write this stuff off," said Peter Mathews, a voluble banking and real estate consultant who was recently elected to the Irish Parliament on a robust bank-bashing platform.

Mr. Mathews estimates that if you include household and nonfinancial corporate debt, Ireland's total debt burden is a shocking 490 percent of its G.D.P. -- which, he claims, makes Ireland the most indebted country in the world.

No Dumpster Diving!

NOGENT, France, Oct. 14 (UPI) -- The mayor of an affluent Paris suburb says as a result of recent incidents citizens are being banned from digging through other people's trash.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

This Week with Christiane Amanpour - September 25, 2011

David Plouffe - Presidential Advisor
Austan Goolsbee - Fmr Obama Economic Advisor
Mohamed E-Erian - CEO Pimco
Chrystia Freeland
George Will

Amanpour: wow look at the newly combative Obama!

Plouffe: We need action Christiane! Now!

Amanpour: Harry Reid says there’s jam on the floor

Plouffe: But Boehner said Obama was jello

Amanpour: incredibly some Democrats don’t
like parts Obama’s jobs plan

Plouffe: it’s got tax cuts, new schools, fast trains and
fun for the whole family

Amanpour: John McCain’s economic advisor says
it’s only a band-aid

Plouffe: Well when you’re bleeding you use a
damn band-aid!

Amanpour: that’s technically true

Plouffe: it’s called the American Jobs Act -
who doesn’t like American jobs?

Amanpour: Bill Clinton and other rich people said
we shouldn’t raise taxes on the rich

Plouffe: it’s a question of fairness Christiane

Amanpour: I suppose

Plouffe: we’re cutting taxes for everyone but the rich
who take advantage of these ridiculous loopholes

Amanpour: is it time to panic?

Plouffe: No - that was a year ago

Amanpour: thanks for coming

[ break ]

Amanpour: Oh noes the Dow is down!!!

Audience: aayyyiiiieee

Amanpour: George you are an expert on
international economics

Will: Imagine if things were really bad - that’s what
we face in my imagination

Amanpour: wow

Will: the next recession is the fault of lazy
unionized Greeks

Goolsbee: Europe sucks - USA! USA!

El-Erian: the world finally staged an intervention
with Europe - it was on Bravo and very moving

Freeland: this is like 2008 - everyone knows an
economic collapse is coming but no one is doing at anything about it

Amanpour: what is going to happen in Europe
in two words?

Freeland: massive shrinkage

El-Erian: we need a Sputnik moment!

Will: let Greece fail!

Amanpour: but George that’s terrible

Will: the fucking Italians are going to bring
us all down - screw ‘em all

Freeland: you’re an idiot

Goolsbee: Europe’s banks have no assets -
only worthless mortgages and stolen Holocaust art

Amanpour: is the political system completely broken?

El-Erian: we are all in the back seat of a car driven
by politicians bickering on their iPhones instead
of watching the road

Amanpour: what if the Chinese stop not buying our stuff

Freeland: the Chinese are freaked out by Tea Party

Amanpour: I know the feeling

Will: it takes real courage to admit that trying to
unify Europe was a bad idea - look at how successful
Europe was from 1914 - 1945

Goolsbee: The European Union has become a
Monty Python skit

Europe: We're an anarcho-syndicalist commune
but we take it in turns to act as a sort of executive
officer for the week but all the decision of that
officer have to be ratified at a special biweekly meeting

Amanpour: okay okay

El-Erian: we should fix housing, credit and growth

Amanpour: brilliant

Freeland: Businesses are rich but they won’t spend their money

Will: Barack Obama is persecuting Boeing

Amanpour: no one expects the Obama Inquisition!


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Sultan of Oman Pays for Hiker's Release

Diplomatic sources told NPR that Oman's sultan, Qaboos bin Said, paid $500,000 each to free Bauer and Fattal – the same amount paid to liberate Shourd. Oman also provided a private plane to transport the two men to its capital city of Muscat much like it did with Shourd.

The State Department had no immediate comment on Oman's involvement in Wednesday's releases. But when Shourd was freed, department spokesman P.J. Crowley praised Muscat as "a key interlocutor" that helped "work this case with the Iranian government."

House Rejects Disaster Bill With Spending Cuts

Sept. 21 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. House rejected a bill that includes $3.65 billion in aid to victims of Hurricane Irene and other natural disasters, a setback for Republican leaders controlling the chamber.

Some Republican lawmakers objected to the measure’s overall cost and House Democrats opposed a spending cut in it, leading to the bill’s defeat. The vote against the bill was 230-195. The dispute raises the specter of a government shutdown because the disaster assistance is attached to a measure needed to fund the government until Nov. 18. The current fiscal year ends Sept. 30, and Congress is in recess next week.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Give a Kidney, Lose a Job

(AP) - A Philadelphia woman says she lost her job after taking off time to donate a kidney to her son.

Claudia Rendon tells WTXF-TV she lost her job last week at an aircraft repair training company after taking time off to donate the kidney to her son, Alex.

The company tells WTXF it was within its rights to dismiss Rendon.

Absolute Last Thing To Do

Sept. 13 (Bloomberg) - European banks may resort to more jobs cuts or zero bonuses as they struggle to maintain fixed compensation levels amid deteriorating financial markets.

The companies are facing shrinking revenue and higher costs after raising base salaries of investment bankers by as much as 100 percent. That decision, which followed regulations to curb bonuses in the wake of the credit crisis, is irreversible even if conditions worsen, lawyers and consultants said, leaving banks with fewer options in their bid to improve margins.

"The absolute last thing banks will want to do is cut current salaries unless they have an explicit contractual right to do so," said Jason Butwick, a London employment attorney at law firm Dechert LLP. "The legal, reputational, commercial and logistical risks of going down that route are huge."

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Name That Speaker!

"We don't impeach people, we don't charge people with treason because we disagree with them on public policy. You might say that they're wrong, you might say lots of things about how misguided they are, but you don't up the ante to that type of rhetoric."

Yes, Rick Santorum is now the reasonable candidate in the GOP Primary.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Mitch McConnell: Cave Man

The legislation would require Obama to suggest spending cuts to accompany those increases in the debt limit, but would not require such cuts. The legislation would prohibit Obama from recommending tax increases along with the requests to increase the debt limit.

Also, Obama would be not be allowed to “point and laugh” as he signs any debt limit increase. He would, however, be permitted one "low mordant chuckle."

Monday, July 11, 2011

Rupert Murdoch's Reign of Terror

Shortly after Scotland Yard began its initial criminal inquiry of phone hacking by The News Of The World in 2006, five senior police investigators discovered that their own cellphone messages had been targeted by the tabloid and had most likely been listened to.

“If it is true that police officers knew their phones had been hacked, it is a serious matter that requires immediate investigation,” said John Whittingdale, the chairman of the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee, which investigated phone hacking. “It would be shocking.”

The lead police investigator on the phone-hacking case, Andy Hayman, left the Metropolitan Police in December 2007 after questions were raised in the news media about business. Mark Lewis, a lawyer who represents a number of high-profile hacking victims, said in an interview that he believed that Mr. Hayman was unwilling to investigate phone-hacking because he feared that the newspaper would reveal his relationship with a woman who worked at the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

McConnell on Party Loyalty

Sen. Mitch McConnell:
The only thing I can tell you at this point is that there are differences. I’m not sure that these kind of differences might not have been there in a more latent form when you had a Republican president. But I do think there is more of a tendency to pull together when the guy in the White House is on your side. So I think some of these views were probably held by s
ome of my members even in the previous administration, but party loyalty tended to mute them. So yeah, I think there are clearly differences and I think a lot of our members, not having a Republican in the White House, feel more free to express their reservations which might have been somewhat muted during the previous administration.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Begun the Drone Wars Have

the debate over drones is like debating the merits of computers in 1979: They are here to stay, and the boom has barely begun. “We are at the Wright Brothers Flier stage of this,”

Grifting the Grifters

June 20 (Washington Post) -- WASHINGTON — A judge is handing former White House chief of staff John Sununu a loss in a suit over a half-million-dollar consulting fee and a warning against handshake deals.

Lamberth closes his opinion with some practical advice: "When it doubt, write it out."

Sunday, June 19, 2011

This Week with Christiane Amanpour - June 19, 2011

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ)
Husain Haqqani (U.S. Ambassador from Pakistan)
David Ignatius
Liz Cheney
Amanpour: hey we’ve been bombing
Libya for 90 days

Audience: woot

Amanpour: Senator McCain are you worried
that the GOP has suddenly discovered isolationism?

McCain: indeed they are putting party politics
over the good of then nation

Amanpour: wow

McCain: but Obama is also to blame for
deferring to those cheese-eating French

Amanpour: what about the War Powers Act?

McCain: John Kerry and I are on top of that

Amanpour: will we be at war there
for the standard 6 months to 10 years?

McCain: Yes! Predators are in the fight!

Amanpour: are the GOP Presidential
candidates isolationists?

McCain: there’s always been a strain of isolationism
in the GOP that seem to pop up whenever a Democrat is President

Amanpour: that’s true

McCain: you know yokels like Bachmann
and Cain would be the first to attack Obama if
Qadaffi had killed 700,000 people

Amanpour: but is there a vital national interest?

McCain: Reagan invaded Grenada because
those medical students were about to graduate and come here

Amanpour: what about Libya

McCain: Barack Obama had to bomb
Libya because of Pan Am 103 and German disco

Amanpour: the GOP candidates have
suddenly realized Obama has gotten us bogged
down in a useless war in Afghanistan

McCain: I don’t what the hell Mitt Romney
is talking about

Amanpour: few people do

McCain: the surge worked!

Amanpour: so I’m told

McCain: I admit Afghanistan is a big mess
but the Taliban are very mean

Amanpour: should we just leave?

McCain: we need to invade Eastern Afghanistan
but give the show one more season to gets its ratings up

Amanpour: I see

McCain: It’s a Crocker!

Amanpour: Pakistan arrested the informants
who helped the U.S. get Osama bin Laden

McCain: because we abandoned Pakistan years ago!

Amanpour: ok

McCain: we’ve poured billions in Pakistan
and we’re not getting a good return on our investment

Amanpour: it’s the Lehman Brothers of Central Asia

McCain: we need to stay there forever

Amanpour: what do you think of the
GOP Presidential candidates?

McCain: they’re all appeasing isolationist idiots

Amanpour: thanks for coming Grumpy

[ break ]

Amanpour: why is Pakistan so mad about the
U.S. military action on the soil?

Haqqani: we’re just trying to find out
what happened

Amanpour: It looks like the people who
helped catch the world’s worst terrorist are being punished

Haqqani: oh no not at all

Cheney: the Pakistanis were embarrassed -
but let’s not be too hard on them we love those crazy guys

Ignatius: Americans were shocked that
Pakistan allowed bin Laden to live in their country

Haqqani: that’s bullshit David

Ignatius: but the Pakistanis were shocked
that we violated their sovereignty

Amanpour: aren’t we in more danger
from terrorism than ever?

Cheney: We are at war - it’s very naive to think
we cannot police the world

Amanpour: really?

Cheney: if Michelle Bachmann is elected
we will surely be attacked again

Amanpour: the American people seem
to be tired of war

Cheney: Obama is soft on attacking on
Libya and Herman Cain is just crazy

Amanpour: that’s fascinating

Cheney: Obama creating a terrible deficit

Amanpour: I though deficits don’t matter

Cheney: who said that?

Amanpour: do you know where the terrorists are?

Haqqani: if Americans are tired of the
war imagine how people in Afghanistan feel

Ignatius: Obama has concluded that killing
terrorists is working but nation-building is not

Cheney: no we must never pull troops
out of Afghanistan!

Amanpour: easy there Liz

Cheney: Attack! Bomb! Kill!

Amanpour: we’ll take a break

[ break ]

Thursday, June 16, 2011

A top Democrat in Alabama is calling on a Republican state senator to resign after he was caught on tape calling black patrons at a casino "aborigines."

A transcript of the recording was read Thursday during a gambling corruption trial. State Sen. Scott Beason is a key witness in the trial of nine people accused of buying and selling votes on pro-gambling legislation.

Alabama Democratic Party Chairman Mark Kennedy has called for Beason to resign, but Republican Party Chairman Bill Armistead says Beason is an honorable man who doesn't have a racist bone in his body.

No, of course not.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Rick Perry, Defender of Salt Shaker Rights

Gail Collins: Today, we are going to discuss Gov. Rick Perry of Texas.

Get back here and sit down.

He is, in his own words, “the kind of guy who goes jogging in the morning packing a Ruger .380 with laser sights and loaded with hollow point bullets, and shoots a coyote that is threatening his daughter’s dog.” That really happened. In fact, it was possibly the high point of Perry’s political career.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Nazi Dogs Do Math, Crack Jokes

Nazi specialists attempted -- apparently with some success -- to train a fleet of "intelligent" dogs to read, write and speak.

The institute trained dogs such as Rolf the Airedale terrier, who was said to be able to discuss religion, contemplate complex mathematics and communicate with humans by tapping out an alphabet code using his paw.

Another dog, Kurwenal, supposedly cracked jokes like a comedian and was a symbol of the educated canines of Germany.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Obama Fever Sweeps Through Irish Village

Two thousand people will be part of the president's visit to the rural village of Moneygall, Co Offaly, on Monday. ahead of a free public event and address by Mr. Obama
in Dublin's College Green.

Records show Mr Obama's great-great-great-great
-grandfather was a shoemaker in Moneygall and his son, Falmouth Kearney, left for New York in 1850.

Meanwhile, the Offaly Independent has cast away tradition and temporarily changed its 119-year-old name in order
to mark the historic visit.

"The Obama Independent" will go on sale for a one-off special souvenir edition to be published tomorrow.

Monday, May 09, 2011

That's So McRaven

May 9 (New York Times) -- Even the most serious of subjects - like the killing of a hunted terrorist leader - apparently needs its light moments.

At the White House last week, President Obama one such opportunity in a report that, to confirm Osama bin Laden's height after he had been killed, a Navy Seal laid down on the floor next to his body. Evidently this improvised approach took Mr. Obama aback. The Washington Post reports that the president wondered aloud to an aide, "Could we not afford to buy a tape measure?"

So, officials familiar with the event said, during a private Oval Office meeting with Vice Adm.
William H. McRaven, who oversees the Seals, Mr. Obama thanked the admiral for a job well done in Pakistan, and presented him with a plaque - with a tape measure on it.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Washington Post losing money with Kaplan

The Washington Post Company stated that its first-quarter profits fell 67% due revenue declines in its Kaplan education unit. Income dropped to $15.2 million. Revenues declined 6.9% to $1.06 billion.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Yemen President Agrees to Quit

According to the Wall Street Journal, the President of Yemen, Ali Abdullah Saleh, has agreed to leave his office in exchange for immunity for himself and his family.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Good to Know

London (DPA) -"A survey released Wednesday showed that a vast majority of British men do not envy Middleton for her future role."

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Meet The Press - April 17, 2011

Tim Geithner (Sec. of Treasury)
Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT)
Alan Greenspan
Jennifer Granholm
Tavis Smiley
Jon Meacham
Gregory: Will Obama finally agree to do the Tea Party wants?

Geithner: why should he

Gregory: the Republicans demand it

Geithner: so I’ve heard

Gregory: you must link debt ceiling and cut spending

Geithner: so you say

Gregory: your warnings about the debt ceiling are overblown

Geithner: you can’t play chicken with the credibility of the U.S. of A. bucko

Gregory: will you the shut down the government?

Geithner: Look Obama offered trillions in cuts - what more do the Republicans want?

Gregory: Obama once voted against raising the debt ceiling

Geithner: true but the whole world is watching to see how crazy we really are

Gregory: Let me tell you Americans are thinking about

Geithner: [ eyeroll ]

Gregory: the gas is too damm high!

Geithner: well you know war in the Middle East, Africa, earthquakes and meltdown in Japan are not helpful

Gregory: Mitt Romney says Obama caused a recession in 2008

Geithner: heh

Gregory: how do answer the charge that you totally suck

Geithner: we’ve created more jobs in one year than Bush did in 8 years

Gregory: I still don’t like you

Geithner: Don’t bet against America Fluffy - it survived Revolution, Civil War, Depressions and can survive my tenure as Secretary of Treasury

Gregory: probably

Geithner: we need to cut spending now so the next Republican President can raise spending

Gregory: will unemployment ever go down?

Geithner: who can say?

Gregory: Obama is insisting on raising taxes on the rich

Geithner: well either that or cut spending the disabled, gut defense, or borrow more money from the Chinese

Gregory: don’t you have to raise taxes on the middle class?

Geithner: do we?

Gregory: yes because Boehner says no way am I raising taxes on the rich

Geithner: we could afford everything if we eliminated loopholes for the wealthy

Gregory: Obama poisoned the well!

Geithner: it’s a starting point

Gregory: Obama gave poor Paul Ryan the black of his hand

Geithner: suck it up Whyan

Gregory: Won’t raising taxes hurt the economy?

Geithner: not if we truly believe in the greatness of America

Gregory: Debbie Wasserman Schultz says the Ryan plan is a deathtrap

Geithner: Debbie only said that because she’s from Florida and most of her constituents are near the end

Gregory: [ high pitched voice ] Obama is not serious!

Geithner: Calm down Fluffy

Gregory: GE paid no taxes - how do I get in on that action

Geithner: you need to lose a huge amount of money

Gregory: I think NBC is good at that

Gregory: so will you address tax inequity

Geithner: yes and even Republicans find this pretty fucking outrageous

Gregory: are you staying in your job

Geithner: no comment Fluffers

Gregory: hee hee

[ break ]

Gregory: Senator will the Tea Party raise the debt ceiling or will you destroy the USA

Lee: we will only vote for it if we also amend the Constitution to require a President to wear his birth certificate at all times around his neck on a sandwich board

Greenspan: I don’t understand what is going on

Gregory: Did Betsy get your pudding?

Greenspan: Debt is bad

Gregory: Obama Unplugged has total contempt for the GOP Congress

Granholm: the GOP has the Ryan plan and Obama has a plan and now we can have a debate and that’s how politics work

Gregory: but that’s all fantasy

Smiley: Budgets are moral documents! The poor got locked out!

Gregory: We are all ruled by the Tea Party because they Dominate The Conversation

Meacham: they are adorable lunatics

Mondale: Obama should promise to raise taxes and he will get reelected because it worked so well for me

Lee: you can’t raise taxes

Gregory: you go Mike

Lee: look the American people know what they want - more spending and lower taxes

Greenspan: Ayn Rand once told me that you can’t get out of a recession by raising taxes - then again she once served me a pie made from poor people

Gregory: Fascinating

Greenspan: We have to let the tax cuts for the rich expire

Lee: [ swoon, thud ]

Gregory: down goes Lee

Meacham: If Democrats raises taxes they will be flacked

Gregory: Jon you are so erudite

Smiley: forget the optics - what about standing up for the right thing dammit!!

Granholm: that’s what Obama did Tavis

Smiley: oh man those are just words!

Granholm: you’re a talk show host!

Tavis: and a writer!

Gregory: unemployment is still high but the stock market is going great

Greenspan: Americans have bet their retirement on shares on American corporations

Gregory: good plan

Greenspan: all those layoffs were great for corporate America

Gregory: excellent

Greenspan: but now lack of employees may hurt companies

Gregory: uh oh

Gregory: A bankrupt reality game show show host is leading the GOP polls

Meacham: Donald Trump's success proves the frustration with both parties

Audience: [ palmface ]

Smiley: Trump is a con artist and he’s playing the idiots in the D.C. media

Lee: Romney doesn’t feel pity remorse or fear - he has no feelings and he can’t be stopped

Gregory: I will now continue my absurd obsession with the idea of Jon Huntsman running for President

Lee: thanks Fluffy

Granholm: Donald Trump appears to passionately believe in something - unlike Weather Vain

Gregory: Deval Patrick says we need optimism and do great things

Lee: the Tea Party is optimistic - that we can finally declare the U.S. government an utter failure

Gregory: Alan you’re very very old - give us your insight

Greenspan: America has a good ride for 118 years but it’s over

Gregory: just like you

Gregory: Mike be honest - will you raise the debt ceiling or not?

Lee: you can’t read my poker face my po-po-poker face

Gregory: I got an e-mail from a guy complaining about Those Clowns in Congress

Greenspan: how do they stay so topical

Smiley: War is the enemy of the poor!

Meacham: Can Obama catapult the propaganda?

Gregory: Good question Jon - hey audience for more of this go to the internets where I talk to Tavis Smiley about his book and Jon Meacham about Shelby Foote’s book

Meacham: [ sobs ]

Gregory: [ hands Jon tissue ]
and that’s Meet The Press

This Week with Christiane Amanpour - April 17, 2011

April 17, 2011
Tim Geithner (Sec. of Treasury)
Rep. Allen West (R-FL)
Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC)
Rep. Steve Southerland (R-FL)
Amanpour: we have a $14 trillion debt - so should we end Medicare or raise taxes on the rich?

Audience: hmm tough one

Amanpour: Tim what is the debt ceiling and is it made of glass

Geithner: Congress will raise the ceiling because they don’t want to see American credibility completely destroyed - I think

Amanpour: what would happen if we didn’t raise the ceiling

Geithner: we’d stop all payments to old people and soldiers - oh and cause a worldwide Depression

Amanpour: you seem confident that the nuts in Congress won’t default but you are campaigning for it

Geithner: well there are a lot of crazy people in office now

Amanpour: so I’ve heard

Geithner: the whole world is watching and waiting for us to lock in some real fun austerity

Amanpour: Obama ambushed Republicans by proposing a budget after they demanded that the propose a budget

Geithner: um yes

Amanpour: but is being to mean to the nuts the right tone?

Geithner: we could cut taxes and increase spending like the Republicans always do

Amanpour: ooh good idea

Geithner: that was sarcasm

Amanpour: but you are going to damage the recovery

Geithner: if we do this carefully we can boost the economy while cutting spending

Amanpour: I fear you will raise taxes on the rich

Geithner: we have to and Paul Ryan proved it

Amanpour: Boehner says no way to tax hikes

Geithner: their own panic on the debt shows you have to raise taxes on the rich or borrow more the Chinese

Amanpour: why not tax the poor more?

Geithner: there is spending in the tax code that goes to the rich

Amanpour: I see what you did there

Geithner: [ grins sheepishly ]

Amanpour: so what’s your plan?

Geithner: first we raise taxes on the rich and get rid of loopholes that mostly benefit billionaires

Amanpour: the IMF wants you to turn the unemployed into soylent green

Geithner: fuck those foreigners

Amanpour: the British tried austerity and surprisingly it sucks

Geithner: True but they have to support a gold and jewel encrusted monarchical drain on society

Amanpour: we have Donald Trump

Geithner: good point

Amanpour: what about putting some Wall Street crooks in jail?

Geithner: well they are very nice you know

Amanpour: what about prosecutions

Geithner: lets not look back

Amanpour: you will stay on and continue to preside over a recession?

Geithner: I do what I can Christiane

Amanpour: you want to cut the deficit and cut taxes for rich people noble ideas indeed - but ill you wreck American first but not raising the debt ceiling?

Southerland: we won’t vote for raising the ceiling if they don’t offer something serious like eliminating Medicare

Walsh: Tea Partiers were sent to Washington by Americans who realized debt was bad after a black Democrat became President

West: we should amend the Constitution to put the Supreme Court in charge of the budget

Amanpour: Privatizing Medicare will cost old people a lot of money

Ellmers: no - it will empower old people to make their own choices on whether they want to die or not

Amanpour: what if they can’t afford medical care

Ellmers: if we don’t eliminate Medicare we will have to face the horrifying prospect of losing Medicare

Amanpour: if the debt is so bad why not raise taxes on the rich

Walsh: no no no we must cut taxes and grow the economy

Amanpour: I see

Walsh: you cut taxes and revenues go up - it’s like magic!

Amanpour: overall people seem to hate your plan

Southerland: look you can’t do the best thing for America and expect people to like you

Amanpour: of course not

Southerland: I may lose in 2012 but I will do so knowing I did my best to take money from poor people and give it to rich people

Amanpour: thanks for coming

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Difference of Opinion

Speaker John Boehner: "I think we all know

that no one wants a shutdown."

Rep. Mike Pence: "It's time to pick a fight, it's time

to cut spending and cut it now... I say, shut it down!"

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

The Diabolical Democratic Plan

On CNN Republican Rep. Paul Broun sounded off on what he calls the Democrats' diabolical plan:

"They said…'We will shut government down, blame Republicans. There will be backlash against Republicans and we will get all these things accomplished,'" he declared. "I think it was a very diabolical plan they put together back last year after the November election. They are carrying it out."

Those clever Democrats, making Republicans look bad!

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

When is Cutting Spending Leftist?

Riddle of the Day

Question: When is cutting spending considered leftist?

Answer: When it's defense spending

The Ryan budget plan does not seek any defense cuts beyond what the administration has proposed. “I don’t intend to be a lot to the left of a Democratic president on defense,” Rep. Tom Cole, an Oklahoma Republican, said before the budget’s release.

Monday, April 04, 2011

She Prefers Van Gogh?

At the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C., a woman tried to pull Gauguin's "Two Tahitian Women" off the wall and banged on its clear plastic covering. Witnesses say the woman was screaming, "This is evil."

Sunday, April 03, 2011

New Utah Law on Verification of Identity

H.B. 116
Utah Immigration Accountability and Enforcement Amendments of 2011

Detention or arrest -- Determination of immigration status

(1)(a) Except as otherwise provided in this Subsection (1), a law enforcement officer:

(i) shall request verification of the immigration status of an individual when the law enforcement officer acting in the enforcement of a state law or local ordinance:
(A) conducts a lawful stop, detention, or arrest of the individual for an alleged offense that is a class A misdemeanor or a felony

Arrest by peace officers

A peace officer may make an arrest under authority of a warrant or may, without warrant, arrest a person:

(4) when the peace officer has reasonable cause to believe the person has committed the offense of failure to disclose identity under Section 76-8-301.5 [.];


(5) when the peace officer has reasonable cause to believe that the person is an alien:
(a) subject to a civil removal order issued by an immigration judge;
(b) regarding whom a civil detainer warrant has been issued by the federal Department of Homeland Security; or
(c) who has been charged or convicted in another state with one or more aggravated felonies as defined by 8 U.S.C. Sec. 1101(a)(43).

Enacted - March 15, 2011

This Week with Christiane Amanpour - April 3, 2011

Jim Jones - Fmr. Obama National Security Advisor
Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY)
Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL)

Amanpour: the middle east is falling into total chaos

Audience: well that’s new

Amanpour: some idiot burned a Koran so people attacked a UN post in Afghanistan

Reporter: 6 US soldiers were killed in a vicious firefight on the Pakistan border

Audience: yikes

Reporter: this is a turning point in the war

Audience: problem solved

Amanpour: this moron pastor in Florida is affecting US foreign policy

Reporter: because of this guy people are shouting ‘Death to President Obama

Amanpour: that’s odd because I heard Obama was a muslim who will impose sharia law

Reporter: it’s complicated

Amanpour: the rebels got killed by friendly fire

Rebels: Han shot first!

Reporter: Tripoli is very normal today - the rebels are disorganized and Qadaffi

Marquadt: the rebels have no leaders - just a princess, and old man and kid from Tatooine

Audience: and 2 droids

Reporter: that’s not going cut it

Audience: damm

Amanpour: General Jones how is America’s longest war going?

Jones: it’s all being disrupted by one wackjob pastor from Florida

Amanpour: when do we win?

Jones: some time next summer or possibly 2014

Amanpour: depending on what?

Jones: on who you define victory

Amanpour: I see

Jones: seriously though - it all really depends on whether Pakistan is willing to go after al-qaeda which they never have done before

Amanpour: that seems like a problem

Jones: it is

Amanpour: America is also involved in a civil war in Libya

Jones: the French need our help to prevent illegal Arab immigrants from getting to Cannes

Amanpour: America is out and NATO is in - but NATO is all-American

Jones: no the US are refueling while the British and French lead the attack

Amanpour: what is the endgame?

Jones: we need Qaddafi to stay because those rebels are untrustworthy

Amanpour: who are the rebels - who are they??

Jones: we know there’s one guy named Fred

Amanpour: ok

Jones: now we need to find out who the rest of the rebels are

Amanpour: it’s very troubling that we don’t know who they are and what their aspirations are and if they have Facebook likes

Jones: we tried poking Fred

Amanpour: what about our favorite dictator in Yemen?

Jones: it’s very worrisome because he hates al-qaeda like we do

Amanpour: can we keep him in power?

Jones: Sadly those pesky people in Yemen have other ideas

Amanpour: that’s a shame

Jones: all this democracy nonsense is a vast tectonic shift

[ break ]

Amanpour: The tea party may force John Boehner to shut the government down

Boehner: we can’t just impose our will [sobs]

Tea Partier: take of the lace panties noodlebat

USAID: the cuts would kill 70,000 kids

Dean: let a shutdow happen and blame the GOP yeeeaaahh

[ break ]

Amanpour: will you guys make a deal?

Sessions: since ignoring the debt under Reagan, Bush I and Bush Jr we have to cut the debt right now!

Schumer: fuck the debt - we need jobs

Session: but the deficit causes recession oh mah stahrs

Schumer: we should not cut cancer research instead we should cut some of those damm farm subsidies

Sessions: Obama is only adding 100,000 jobs - clearly we need to cut the debt right now

Amanpour: so you say

Sessions: we have to cut $800 billion - did you know we have to borrow all this money?!?

Amanpour: wow was this true when Reagan, Bush and Dubya were President

Sessions: who?

Amanpour: Jeff are the Tea Parties going to destroy America?

Sess: no they are very mature lunatics

Amanpour: you’re not worried

Sessions: the Democrat debt will cause the shutdown of all social programs in 2 years

Schumer: I feel sorry for the Republicans because the Tea Party are all freaks and crazies

Amanpour: Chuck you called the tea party extreme!

Schumer: you’re damm fucking right I did

Sessions: the Tea Party may not be the fastest cars on blocks but they are fundamentally right about everything

Amanpour: like what

Sessions: Obama really is a black democrat!

Amanpour: thanks for coming guys

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Partial Meltdown in Reactor Two

The radioactive core of Reactor Two of the Fukushima plant appears to have melted through the bottom of its containment vessel and may have melted on to a concrete floor, running the risk of radioactive gases being released into the surrounding area, according to experts.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

U.N. Security Council Resolution 1973

Protection of civilians

Authorizes Member States that have notified the Secretary-General, acting nationally or through regional organizations or arrangements, and acting in cooperation with the Secretary-General, to take all necessary measures, notwithstanding paragraph 9 of resolution 1970 (2011), to protect civilians and civilian populated areas under threat of attack in the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, including Benghazi, while excluding a foreign occupation force of any form on any part of Libyan territory, and requests the Member States concerned to inform the Secretary-General immediately of the measures they take pursuant to the authorization conferred by this paragraph which shall be immediately reported to the Security Council;

5. Recognizes the important role of the League of Arab States in matters relating to the maintenance of international peace and security in the region, and bearing in mind Chapter VIII of the Charter of the United Nations, requests the Member States of the League of Arab States to cooperate with other Member States in the implementation of paragraph 4;

U.S., France, Britain Launch Attacks on Libyan Government

U.S. naval and air forces, with the French and British military attacked targets in Libya in an effort to criple the government run Moammar Qaddafi.

The New York Times reports:
The mission to impose a United Nations-sanctioned no-fly zone was portrayed by Pentagon and NATO officials as under French and British leadership.

But the Pentagon said that American forces took the lead in the initial campaign to knock out Libya’s air defense systems, firing volley after volley of Tomahawk missiles from nearby ships against missile, radar and communications centers around Tripoli, the capital, and the western cities of Misurata and Surt.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Little Effect

New York Times:
Earlier Thursday the military forces dumped seawater from a helicopter on Reactor No. 3, making four passes and dropping a total of about 8,000 gallons over it as a plume of white smoke billowed. The Japanese government said that the reactor typically needs 50 tons of water, or about 12,000 gallons, a day to keep from overheating.

The Self-Defense Forces later said the measure had little effect on reducing the temperature in the pool where the spent rods are stored.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Ice Sheets Shrinking More Quickly

Greenland and Antarctica’s ice sheets are shrinking more quickly, suggesting United Nations

projections for sea-level rise are too conservative, a U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration-funded study said.

From 1992 to 2009, the two regions lost on average 36.3 billion tons more ice every year than the previous year, scientists led by Eric Rignot at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, said in a study in the Geophysical Research Letters journal. The researchers said they

linked two independent sets of measurements to validate them.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Jobless Claims Fall Again

Jobless claims:

March 28, 2009: 651,000

February 26, 2011: 368,000

Monday, February 28, 2011

Team Obama Throws Cold Water on Social Security Cuts

White House Budget Director Jack Lew and Jason Furman, deputy director of President Barack Obama’s National Economic Council, both stressed this week that Social Security isn’t facing an immediate funding crisis and should be viewed separately from moves to reduce the federal deficit.

“They’ve dumped a big pot of ice cold water on any embers of Social Security reform,” said Chuck Blahous, a Social Security public trustee who headed a commission on the program empaneled by President George W. Bush.

Sunday, February 27, 2011


U.S. Economy Grew 2.8% in Fourth Quarter

The revised increase in gross domestic product compares with a 3.2 percent estimate issued last month and a 2.6 percent gain in the third quarter, figures from the Commerce Department showed today in Washington. The economy, excluding inventories, grew at a 6.7 percent pace, the most since 1998. For all of 2010, the world’s largest economy expanded 2.8 percent, the most in five years, after shrinking 2.6 percent in 2009.

U.K. Economy Shrank More Than Estimated in Fourth Quarter

Feb. 25 -- Britain’s economy shrank more than initially estimated in the fourth quarter, complicating the task of the Bank of England as a split deepens among policy makers on whether to withdraw stimulus. Gross domestic product fell 0.6 percent from the previous three months, compared with an initial estimate for a 0.5 percent drop, the Office for National Statistics said

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Revenues Rise Most in 5 Years

Total revenue for S&P 500 companies may rise 7.5 percent this year, the most since 2006, to an all-time high of $1,017.44 a share, according to analyst estimates compiled through Feb. 6 by Bloomberg. Sales fell 13 percent between November 2008 and October 2009 as the worst U.S. recession since the 1930s forced businesses and consumers to cut back on spending.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Consumer Spending Gains Most in Years

The U.S. economy accelerated in the fourth quarter of 2010, driven by the biggest gain in consumer spending in more than four years and rising exports.

Final sales, which includes all categories except stockpiles, rose at a 7.1 percent pace, the most since 1984.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Her Name Was Lola

Lola, a red-tailed hawk living in Central Park since 2002 with her mate hawk Pale Male, a 20-year fixture of the park, hasn't been seen since Dec. 18 and is presumed dead.

"It's pretty clear that Lola has met her demise, probably from a poisoned prey animal (such as a rat or pigeon) or by injury," hawk expert John Blakeman said.

Fans of Pale Male said the hawk has had at least five mates since settling in the park in 1991 and has fathered at least 23 chicks.