samedi, mars 21, 2009

Capitol Hill tantrum Sunday edit

I'm getting sick of Congress's populist outrage. But I am wondering about that of the American public. How ticked are we?

Joe Nocera has a wonderful column in today's New York Times about AIG.

No, it wasn't about how those AWFUL people got those bonuses, and really they should be ridden out on a rail--or killed.

Nocera was pointing out that the people we should be looking into are the large financial groups who are getting 100 cents on the dollar--trillions from the government. Let's talk about Goldman Sachs.Some of the other biggies were essentialy being bailed out 2x-once by AIG and once by the Feds. Or maybe that's really 2x by the government.

Why weren't these companies allowed to disappear?

Nocera doesn't comment on this--but how long will we go on bailing out companies? We can't keep printing bills.

Some of the companies getting AIG money (Federal money, our money), he notes, aren't even American.

Check out this smackdown of Larry Summers and Tim Geithner by liberal Frank Rich--with a warning to Obama.

Meanwhile Congress, particularly the Democrats, are acting like a big bunch of babies. Nocera argues, in company of Richard Shelby of Alabama, that there should be an investigation, hearings, whatever it takes to find out exactly what these guys were doing.

Read it here.

jeudi, mars 19, 2009

Nick and the Daily Me

If I could be a famous columnist, I would want to be a female version of Nick Kristof. I've mentioned previously in this blog how awesome he is for traveling to dangerous places around the globe to tell us stories we sometimes don't wish to hear, for his persistent advocacy on Darfur, and for his empathy for evangelicals--even when they were being cartooned by the left (including his NYT colleague Frank Rich) during the Bush administration.

Maybe I like him so much because we think alike on some matters. Thusday's opinion piece, The Daily Me, is so apropos of what I've been slinging up here that I had to include it today.

And I like his idea of wrestling with someone who completely disagrees with you. My sole warning? It can't be done via email. I say this on purely practical grounds. When I look back, it's way too easy to be hostile in emails, to take positions you might not take otherwise, and to be just plain rude. I've lost a few friends to email
for what I think, pardon the expression, are purely bullshit reasons.

Really. So I love the notion, but I just don't know how to put it into practice.

Otherwise, Nick, stay right there in our faces-passionate, moral, and rational, seeking to build bridges rather than to torpedo them. Eventually, people will fidn that the Daily Me gets a

mardi, mars 17, 2009

Rachel on Rush

Here's a clip from Rachel Maddow's show. Think about it after you watch it. Did it lower your blood pressure? Inform you? Make you chuckle? Make you really mad? Did you really want to throw the TV or computer across the room?

I admit, I have a low tolerance for onesidedness. If I stumble across Bill or Rush or Rachel at the YMCA, I'll watch--after all, exercising isn't supposed to be all fun. But I leave them to those who find they satisfy. I'm going back to chocolate covered marshmallow eggs.

lundi, mars 16, 2009

Bill Maher on Religion

One thread I'm beginning to pick up--our persistent need to either feel superior to those other idiots (as in the Maher YouTube video linked here) or act as though we are speaking for a persecuted minority. How many times have I seen this dynamic at play? In evangelical circles (white, middle class, affluent) where I worked. Among Catholic commenters where I blog. Among Democrats under Bush. Now with Republicans under Obama.

And yanno what I want to say to them? If you truly believe you are persecuted, let's find a way to send you to Darfur for a week. Or Rwanda. Or any number of countries in the former Soviet Republic.

Then come back and try that one on for size again.

Meanwhile, I give you Bill Maher-voice of another persecuted minority. By the way, I haven't yet seen anything to refute my initial point.

dimanche, mars 15, 2009

A Rush quote about Obama

"This was never about economics, not principally. It's about "social justice." His education plan is "Maoist (no surprise given the Ayers/Klonsky influence), and he is otherwise a Bolshevik. I'm also quite sure, given his character traits, that he would be a Stalinist if he thought he could get away with it ... and he's working on that, too. I wonder what the country will look like in his 10th or 15th year as president?"

"We want to save America"

Jim Cramer does have his defenders, however--albeit an unlikely one. Check out the transcript of Rush Limbaugh's defense here.

Limbaugh i.d.'s Cramer as a liberal Democrat, thrown under the bus by his own liberal friends. I have no idea about Cramer's political persuasion--I just don't like his theatrical personality.

I'm currently being hammered by a friend for not having exposed myself to primary Limbaugh, but to quotes from him, before "attacking" him. It is very true that I don't listen to Limbaugh or Maddow, or Maher. I believe my point still stands--they don't serve public discourse with divisive language. That being said, I apologize for not having done as much investigation as I should. I'll be doing some primary reading this week, and publish some quotes that I find interesting, as I find them. I'm too cheap to pay for them, but what I can find for free, I'll share with you.