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December 07, 2008



Go South Panola. Oops, too late.


Good morning. Another happy day - "cold cash" lost. Hooray.

Catching up reading the Saturday thread, I agree with Ann, that Obama's youtube videos are eerie. Not inspiring. Already, I am so sick of him and his droning on and on.

Also, remember Pearl Harbor. This is my youngest son's birthday, too, so I always remember the "Day that lived in infamy," both sadly and happily.


Good Morning JOM!


"cold cash" lost. Hooray.

I'm shocked. Last I heard sometime yesterday, he was a shoe in.

Cool - on to the conviction.


'Mornin, all.

I forgot, did the House leadership bury Jefferson's case or just "defer" it until the legal authorities acted?

I recall the hoohah about the materials confiscated from Jefferson's office, but don't recall if "justice" was served or the stuff was completely returned.


The last I recall the parties were directed to go thru each doc before the trial judge to argue why it was/was not privileged legislative materials which LE had wrondfully seized and therefore could not be used as evidence against him.

I am really concerned about the double impact on our economy of Davis Bacon on all these new federal construction projects AND the effect of doing away with secret ballot elections--this has the potential of creating huge inflation/unbelievable rise in taxes/pricing whatever we manufacture out of the international marketplace...Please discuss so I can steal your good thoughts later.


In many companies employing union members, there is functionally dual management, one of which is not beholden to stockholders. Card check will further strengthen the team not responsible to shareholders. Not good public policy.


Oh bummer! Mike Allen is reporting that Chris Matthews has signed a new contract with MSNBC. I was hoping he was off t.v. and on his way to oblivion.


I sure hope the stories of Sarah Palin snubbing Oprah Winfry are true. Winfrey certainly deserves it. Hopefully we can get a media savvy candidate, which Fred showed signs of, and not the butt sniffers the rest of the field seems to be.


No, no. Leave Chris Matthews where he is. MSNBC management deserves all the help they can get "Pinching" the equity of the MSNBC stockholders.

Here you have MSNBC pushing Caroline Kennedy as New York's senator. Her sole qualification is that she helped Obama choose Joe Biden. She would bring less to the Senate than Obama brought when he was elected.

Within a span of hours the NY Times with Ayers and MSNBC with Kennedy have shown that they cannot distinguish between news and entertainment.

Matthews deserves the opportunity to continue dancing on his tingly leg.

Her sole qualification is that she helped Obama choose Joe Biden.

Speaking of slow Joe, gotta love this howler:

Dialing back his predecessor’s expansive view of the office, Vice President-elect Joe Biden plans on “restoring the Office of the Vice President to its historical role” as adviser to the president and tie-breaker in the Senate, an aide to Biden said Saturday.

Hey bud, you served Zero's purpose (whatever it was), now get outta the way!


William "Poor little rich boy" Ayers was a terrorist. No matter how much the old fart whines now,he was by definition a terrorist.


We see why they didn't want Sarah in there; she'd do too many things. Just in the last week, when they say she 'gallivanting' ignoring the State, she proposed a new health care initiative, and finally the contract on the Alaska Gas Pipeline. Likely, that state won't have to call on Washington, for assistance on deficits for a while. So they had to lead with the wardrobe and the makeup with obvious no actual confirmation; AP style manual remember.

The Joseph Cao news was so remarkable, that
story and not Barry's Three Year Planshould lead the news. The only surprise one would have thought it would have happened in Orange County first. Alas they have Loretta Sanchez, there, an embarassment at every level imaginable. The betrayal of our South Vietnamese allies, rubberstamped by the '74
Democratic Congress was such a bitter pill to swallow. The subsequent migrations, which even prompted the late Susan Sontag to reflect for a moment, was another sad day. That someone could rise from that tragedy and take his seat in Congress shows how some good can come out of such a circumstance. Sadly the same class of idiots want to repeat this train in events
in Iraq.


The Ayers Op-ed is a (prectable) travesty. The radical speaker of "Truth to Power" mumbles in the passive voice about how unfortunate it was that bombs exploded in Greenwich Village, without acknowledging his own central role, or that the three would-be bombers who blew themselves up were his cohorts (and, if I understand correctly, his girlfriend). Now he's a "nonviolent activist" and it's still Johnson and Nixon's fault.
Try reading the comments on the NYT site. Especially the "editor's selections" that show up when you go there--you have to click for the full selection (or at least what they allow).
The fawning, unquestioning acceptance of Ayers whitewash, and the reflexive demonizing of Sarah Palin (!?) are instructive of the pure NYT mindset. Curious that Ayers himself raises the spectre of Orwell's "1984" and the "Two-Minute Hate" in his piece. It would seem that Sarah Palin serves that purpose for the current intelligentsia.
There are several very good comments, apparently by Obama supporters, who nonetheless call Ayers what he is--an unrepentant terrorist. The editors don't seem to think those comments worthy. What a surprise.


I see the Caroline story as another example of Kennedy Omerta..By letting this story bubble, Cuomo is being kept from running for the nomination and since he divorced Kerry Kennedy in a nasty public way, he'll be killed. Can't mess with Camelot.


If one sees any of the WWII vets, don't forget to say thanks. It is hard to imagine any group that Americans owe more too.

Michelle Malkin has a wonderful story in regards to the WWII vets and a 13 year old boy who has stepped up and helped them. Apparently William Ayers and his friends haven't gotten to every child yet.

"Two years ago, a waning fraternity of local men who had survived the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor thought their 65th anniversary reunion would be the last.

“We are all getting old now,” Jack Carson of Overland Park told The Kansas City Star at the time, “and it’s almost too much to get anything done.”

A boy named Quinn changed that.

Today, Kansas City Metro Chapter III of the Pearl Harbor Survivors Association — now fewer than a half-dozen veterans — will gather again for the 67th anniversary at a Mission community center.

The task of organizing and promoting the reunion was seized by 13-year-old Quinn Appletoft, a World War II buff who happened upon the group about eight years ago. Last year, he served as master of ceremonies.

Recently, he distributed fliers at two Shawnee Mission schools. His fliers read: “We will remember this day with survivors. … You can hear their stories of this tragic day and look at artifacts.”

Refreshments provided. Quinn hopes maybe 10 kids will come."


Reading the last sentence just breaks my heart. They aren't even all gone yet and so few remember.


Not all kids have been ruined. Last summer my 13 year old spent the night on the USS Massachusetts in Fall River as part of a youth leadership program. After listening to ACLU and Catholic Worker types bash the US she had had enough. Finally at the USS Massachusetts an old vet, who had actually served on the ship, told them about WWii and what was it was like to be on the ship. It was her best memory of the week. What really set her off was the kid from Calif who started giving the old man a hard time. She and a few of the others called him out immediately. The lack of respect this kid showed upset her about as much as I have ever seen. She still occasionally mentions it.
She was born 2 weeks before her grandfather passed away. He was finishing a 2 year stint when Pearl harbor occurred. He spent the entire war in theatre. North Africa, Italy, the beach at Normandy, and into Berlin with the Second Armored Division. It doesn't get much tougher than that. Hard to imagine four long years without substantial relief. Thirteen month tours would be a cake walk.


The Op-ed also omits to mention that Diana Oughton was Ayers girlfriend and that Ayers had had a sexual liason with Terry Robbins.Two of those killed in the explosion.
Not the kind of thing normal people would forget.




Clarice: You expressed concern about Davis Bacon and card check on new federal construction contracts.

Today, Hugh Hewitt offers what is probably the biggest roadblock to any projects - environmentalists.

The idea that major new projects will launch and get workers pouring concrete and building roads, bridges and ports simply ignores the knots that the environmental laws of the U.S. and the states have tied in the development process, and the bigger the project the bigger the knot.

Public Works v. ESA, NEPA, CWA, etc.


PUK, Not the sort of thing I'd forget.

Centralcal, what an amusing possibility. OTOH I've assumed for some time that the green movement was just a cover for the socialists. We'll see won't we? Are some of them so deluded they didn't get the real message?


Yes, centralcal, that's very funny and I had totally missed it.

It's going to be tough to blame environmentalists on Bush, but maybe the Obama Media can say that it's understandable that certain elements of the Green Movement may sometimes go to far, even to the point of interfering with Lord Obama, because they developed in response to the Cheney-led attempt to destroy Gaia.


"I never killed or injured anyone.... In 1970, I co-founded the Weather Underground, an organization that was created after an accidental explosion that claimed the lives of three of our comrades in Greenwich Village".

One could imagine a psychopath using these words.A whole new meaning on "Screw you Comrade".

Patrick R. Sullivan

Today's lesson in Public Choice Economics has a starring role for the new Sec'y of State:

Scientists have discovered a lotion that can save the lives of U.S. soldiers exposed to chemical weapons — a product vastly superior to the standard-issue decontamination powder.

Naturally, the Defense Department wants to scrap the powder and switch to the more-effective lotion.

But there's a problem: After being lobbied by the companies making the powder, several members of Congress pushed through two earmarks worth $7.6 million that forced the military for the past two years to keep buying the inferior product.

The product, known as M291, is made from a resin sold exclusively by a Pennsylvania chemical company, which is then processed into powder by a New York company, then assembled into individual kits at a facility in Arkansas.

Among the lawmakers who championed the earmarks are Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y.; Arlen Specter, R-Pa.; and Charles Schumer, D-N.Y.

Clinton, who is poised to become secretary of state, received nearly $7,000 in campaign donations from the beneficiaries of these earmarks in recent years. Specter got more than $47,000.


PeterUK, just in case there are things that have been forgotten about Ayers, RBO has come out with a 5 page list of articles published about his efforts to destroy America.


One can find just about any kind of crime imaginable on the list.


I just watched O's press conference - 10 minutes of him saying absolutely nothing. I can't believe we elected this guy.


The teleprompter President will cover for the criminal misdeeds and botched execution of his administration, just as the tongue-tied President failed to cover for his clean and effective administration. This is a corruption augering poorly for our future. I'm in hopes that the inevitable reaction will restore our strength, but why, oh why, must we travel through the abyss?


PeterUK--It took me a sec to figure out what you were apologizing for. No need! In my wingnut world I am always happy to hear from someone who sees it the the same way-even if it involves stepping on my toes.


Jennifer Rubin, at RCP, has a useful article about the fights Obama is picking, and ducking.


"I just watched O's press conference - 10 minutes of him saying absolutely nothing."

As near as I can tell, he is qualified to say that.

hit and run

Go, Giants. And Jets. And Mighty Steelers.


So far!


I recollect that during the campaign Obama praised the industrial building efforts of The Peoples Republic of China highlighted during Olympic's coverage, and that he wanted that sort of massive industrial program instituted here. At the time I thought that what he really wanted was the power to function like the Chinese Leadership; (ie) regardless of Environmentalism or eminant domain or citizens desires etc. I still think that that is what he wants, and Environmental challenges are going to be big stumbling blocks in his accomplishing that. It will be interesting to me these next 4 years to see if the Environmental Left rolls over or gets OBE by Obama, and even more interesting if an Environmental Right emerges with the aim of adopting the Left's tactics to stymie Obama's objectives.

Payback is Hell...Oops, Payback is Gahena...Oops, Payback is like kindly considering traveling in the direction of Newark.



Let's see who gets nominated for EPA and DOE. Those are not watched as closely as the others, but for reading the Obama tea leaves these are really important.

Rick Ballard

"if an Environmental Right emerges with the aim of adopting the Left's tactics to stymie Obama's objectives."


It won't matter. It was the commie judges listening to the babbling of the Watermelons and then finding emanations in penumbras that did the trick on the blocking suits. Tomorrow's commie judge will note the objective necessity of Hope & Change and rule the Spotted Horn Toad expendable in pursuit of Higher Truth.

I recall the Obabble about the Chicom's great work on the Olympic Potemkin Village - it's another one of the reasons that watching the Slave Empire crumble isn't going to bother me much.

What I'm getting from Obabble thus far is a rigid adherence to development of dependence. If he has said a word about individual initiative and self reliance it's been well hidden.


Well, we'll have Congressional hearings on the failure of FannieMae/FreddyMac to be held this week.

And AP sets the meme!! LUN

It's all those corrupt Republicans. No mention of Chris Dodd, Barney Frank, B. Obama et al who took mucho campaign contributions from FM&FM. After all, to get cooperation on the bailout negotiations Princess Pelosi promised dems would not be investigated.


Ah, Rick, do you suppose the old court reported decisions will just self destruct?
If it weren;t so perilous, it might be fun to watch as spotted owls and pink tinged flukes get kicked off the Ark.


There certainly is a tension developing between environmentalists who notice that the mistaken demonizing of CO2 is taking energy and credibility away from other environmental causes.

There is no question we have to keep the earth clean. We have to keep our room clean too. But we are also not toxically hotboxing our room either by burning one tiny little birthday candle.


Ever notice the interaction in the 'also/either' construction, similar to a redundancy?


Ooh, and I dangled 'between'. There is a tension developing among environmentalists between those who believe in the CO2=AGW paradigm, and those who do not.

Rick Ballard

"do you suppose the old court reported decisions will just self destruct?"

Oh no. The "legal thinking" will suddenly "evolve". Not overnight suddenly - legal suddenly. A couple of years. A little creative court shopping might slow new projects down but I don't think there have been any new transportation projects mentioned in the Obabble that I've waded through. It's going to be the alternative energy projects (based upon the fantastic new technology - windmills) which will be worth watching.

Hewitt is off the mark in his analysis of what is proposed. Obama is talking about bailing out state and local governments who have so abused their transportation repair and maintenance accounts that they can't find the matching dough for Federal grants.


Not to mention the communities who consider it a virtue to neglect the roads, all the better to encourage mass transit. Evil, evil, combustion engine.


This may be the time to form the S.C.A.M.sters for green power,Rick. I think PUK should be our official spokesman though, the media simply adores British accents--assumes automatically that the speaker knows what he's talking about and it honest.


This may be the time to form the S.C.A.M.sters for green power,Rick. I think PUK should be our official spokesman though, the media simply adores British accents--assumes automatically that the speaker knows what he's talking about and is honest.


BTW the bottom has fallen out of the recycling market per an article today That certainly means it will take more energy to continue this fruitcake waste of time than is saved by it.

Rick Ballard

If anyone has a WSJ subscription - this popped up in a comment and was cited to the WSJ

Tribune Co. is preparing for a possible bankruptcy-protection filing as soon as this week, according to people familiar with the matter, opening a new front of trouble for the newspaper industry.

As Tribune continues discussions with its lenders to rework its debt load, the newspaper-and-television concern in recent days has hired Lazard Ltd. as its financial adviser and a legal counsel for a possible trip through bankruptcy court, according to people familiar with the matter.

Gosh - how sad. I'd like some confirmation though. If it's true maybe we could start a dead pool on the NYT and McClatchy.

Thomas Collins

Forget the Super Bowl and the BCS College Football Championship Game. Get the Beer and nachos ready for the December 29th Alamo Bowl in San Antonio, where my youngest will be performing as part of the Northwestern marching band. Oh yeah, there's a football game also taking place (Northwestern vs. Missouri).

Now I've got to figure out what speck on the field she will be at the halftime show.

Rick Ballard

Speaking of dead pools on the NYT - isn't the building supposed to be the crown jewel?


The moment in which to purchase that Manhattan pied-à-terre appears to be approaching.

Rather quickly.

Did you know that 25% of that 533K job loss number was in professional and business services? Personally, I find the idea of an investment banker operating a D-9 rather terrifying. I hope they do their OJT in Chicago.


Glass and aluminium are generally the two most economically recyclable materials, even though the raw materials for their production are common. Sand and aluminium ores are nearly ubiquitous, but the reason we recycle them is because it takes a lot less energy to simply melt them than it takes to create them from the raw material, fusing and electrolyzing as the two processes.

Before the invention of electrolyisis, elemental aluminium was rare. Napoleon had a set of 'silverware' made from fabulously costly aluminium. Today, it's the cheapest metal option, losing out in utility to plastic.


Mr Ballard,

"The moment in which to purchase that Manhattan pied-à-terre appears to be approaching."

I would advise waiting until rising sea levels depreciate properties further.
SCAM is putting out some "RUN FOR YOUR LIVES" ads.Remind them that New Orleans was on the waterfront.


Rick, I think that they would be better suited to be the flaggers on the project.
Or maybe, the guys holding up the rakes on the blacktop repair crews.

Meanwhile, I hear that Obama, who apparently knows about jobs, even through he has apparently never actually held one, thinks that some car company management should be fired.

Uppity Woman, posted over at RBO, has a long article on the Car Czar position that is going to be open soon.

But she has outlined the entire crisis in these words, IMO.

"All you have to do is read the Consumer Reports April Car issue for any particular year and look at the black circles in the repair records to know that very little has changed."



That would be Napoleon III,the man had no taste.


"If it's true maybe we could start a dead pool on the NYT and McClatchy."

Well, Rick, I am so there!

And with all the financial and media people being laid off, I would think it would be MORE than 25% of the job loss numbers. And, rising by the day.


Jets? Ugh.

Rick Ballard


A careful reading of the Obabble suggests that the Dem takeover of ZombieMotors will not be complete until the new DemYugos hit the lots. And stay in them.

Detroit's success with SUVs suggests that they can still make and market saleable product. The Dems will fix that. Forever.


Obama Invest, Invest, In vest.




Rick, that is what the WSJ is reporting. Apparently Zell is close to reaching his debt limit.

Tribune has been on wobbly footing since last December, when real-estate mogul Samuel Zell led a debt-backed deal to take the company private. Tribune so far has stayed ahead of its $12 billion in borrowings with the help of asset sales. Now, however, dwindling profits are tightening the noose.

The company's cash flow may not be enough to cover nearly $1 billion in interest payments due this year, and Tribune owes a $512 million debt payment in June.

One of Tribune's most pressing concerns: By the end of the year, the company is likely to be in violation of debt terms that limit borrowings to nine times its adjusted profits. The ratio stood at 8.3 at the end of the second quarter, before Tribune reported an 83% decline in operating profit for the three months ended Sept 28.

Depressed Atlas

From WSJ.Com Sunday:

Tribune Co. is preparing for a possible filing for bankruptcy-court protection as soon as this week, according to people familiar with the matter, in another sign of trouble for the newspaper industry.

In recent days, as Tribune continued talks with lenders to restructure its debt, the newspaper-and-television concern hired Lazard Ltd. as its financial adviser, as well as legal counsel for a possible trip through bankruptcy court, according to people familiar with the matter.
A Tribune spokesman said the company doesn't comment on rumors or speculation. Tribune owns eight major daily newspapers, including the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune and Baltimore Sun, and a string of local TV stations.

A spokesman for investment bank Lazard didn't respond to a request for comment.

Tribune's latest actions underscore the deepening distress enveloping Tribune and other newspaper publishers. Their businesses are being battered by dwindling advertising sales, and they are carrying debt loads that are unmanageable under current market conditions. Insider insiders expect some papers will need to fold or seek protection from creditors to reorganize in coming months.

Rick Ballard


Thanks. It appears that both Zell and the NYT are caught in a debt squeeze exacerbated by the real estate squeeze. Shades of Olympia and York in '91-'92.


OT, but i think this is right up your alley. have you ever read any Anthony Esolen, professor of literature at Providence and translator of Dante. Read his piece at Mere Comments, it's very short.

For some reason I read this and immediately thought of you.


Also from the WSJ/Weedend Edition, Heard On The Street: Red Ink Will Spur Change at Newspapers

More than 20% of the newspaper industry--measured by daily circulation--is currently in financial distress. Publishers including Tribune, McClatchy, Lee Enterprises, Journal- Register, MediaNews Group and Freedom Communications are carrying heavy loads of debt given their fast shrinking revenues.
Assuming the recession deepens, bankruptcy filings in the industry are possible. More likely, lenders will agree to renegotiate loans. In some cases investors may take control in debt-for-equity swaps. Whatever happens, existing shareholders, including families with decades of history in the industry, could be largely wiped out.

Rick Ballard


Thank you for the link and compliment. I'll have to read a bit more but I find his view on slavery very sympathetic to my understanding.


In other news:

Dateline Ohio

Two inches of snow, fire in the fireplace, decorated the tree, made old fashioned gingerbread cake, and watched the Steelers/Cowboy game. Sorry Texans, but my husband is delighted.

Obama was scary this morning on MTP, and I am blaming him for every pound I am sure to gain anxiously cooking away his first term. (How did you like Brokaw and his $4 gas recipe?)

But good cheer and Christmas wishes for all of you here that keep me sane. :) Thank you!



You will love this:http://dealbook.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/12/07/tribune-hires-bankruptcy-advisers/ ">The NYT writes about the troubled Tribune..HA


Yes--can residential real estate be far behind commercial--What did they think? The city could sustain itself on fillagreed almonds?


They say the Miami Herald's up for sale; the question who's deep pocketed enough in this day and age to buy it, and more importantly who would want it. One could say Soros, but he's likely taken a bath as 'reflexivity' turned out not like he thought. They already reflect his point of view anyways. Would Murdoch take a gander southward; I know he's in trouble too, not
to the extent of the others.

About all this creative legal reasoning; remember the tete a tet on Jodi Kantor's review of his lecture syllabi and even some of his sample exams, embedded with left wing premises. Well thats what we have to look forward to in spades. Brokaw said what; is he mad (this is a rhetorical
question.)Remember all those anxieties I had with historical references; well they're coming back up again, like a bad burrito.


There's a typo I missed (It's Davis Bacon):


Rick Ballard


Some of the comments on that NYT piece were pretty good. I wonder who will be tasked to do the NYT obituary? There's a bullet due in May if I remember correctly. I can't recall if it's a debt refi or a mortgage refi.


Tishman, which bought Peter Cooper Village and Stuyvesant Town to take these apartment complexes upscale, is reportedly packing the place with college students who will each pay a premium amount to jam into apartments together. Why is the firm doing this? It needs to support the huge leverage it put on the project. What do you think converting these apartments to dorms will do to rents longer term? Won't the huge absorption of college students into these gigantic apartment complexes hurt rents at the other East Village buildings that used to serve as accommodations for students?

Sounds like it's happening already. I'm at about 50/50 on the probability that November was the max on layoffs. I can see another +500K month in December if I squint a bit. The worst layoff months occur about two thirds of the way through a downturn (counting from the first two consecutive months of cuts). Each downturn is different but if November or December is the blowoff month then we're much closer to the end than the beginning.



Congress has allocated over $43 million in earmarks to the manufacturer of the resin, Rohm and Haas of Pennsylvania, since 2000."

Fedspending: Rohm and Haas


Also, notice that most of it was no-bid contracts and only 16,000 had any competition!!


That is the thing, the reference points are all over the place; put the most recent ones have 1993, at the time of the recovery,
1974 at the tail end of the October '73 oil spike, 1955 for G.M, which was kind of a brief downturn that cost Eisenhower his Republican majority. 6.7% is not great, but they way everyone is talking you would think we were at 10%. Of course, we didn't carry nearly this level or proportion of debt at most of those times; but the panic on the economic front seems a little unwarranted. One could even look at Paulsen as the reincarnation of the late economic czar William Simon, which even Doonesbury had a chuckle at, and Ford's WIN buttons. Now I knoe we face a economicallyilliterate but politically adept braintrust, overseeing
this whole thing. I know Po has the apocalyptic future, down pat 'dogs and cats, living together, mass hysteria" but may we be spinning ourself too down, and what are the consequences of this. If this too shall pass.


Thanks, Ann--I'll add that to the comments section.

Rick, Imagine the upper East side populated by more than investment bankers and hedge fund whiz kids--you know the way NYC used to be--



Are you including congress' special touch with ZombieMotors? Even if they get the money, I could see all them in bankruptcy court in the middle of 09 while they are getting DemYugo to market.

Regarding the papers-noticed that the NYTs cut their dividend to conserve some cash, but they'll be selling the furniture here soon. One idea that I had is this might be a good time for Google (or Microsoft if they get Yahoo) to start buying up on the cheap some of the larger media properties: they could have their own news wire; commoditize the archives; and localize their advertising. Don't think it will happen though.



Just for you, yes Brokaw is nuts: With Gas Prices Down Brokaw Wants To Tax Them To $4 A Gallon


If this were an old movie, about now Mickey Rooney would be saying to Judy Garland."Hey, I've got an idea. Why don't we run our own newspaper?"


This is right around the time, that Lloyd Bridges would say "This was a bad week to quit. . ." This is really Zucker material isn't it.

Rick Ballard

"Of course, we didn't carry nearly this level or proportion of debt at most of those times, but the panic on the economic front seems a little unwarranted."

Turn the coin over. "Of course, never in the history of the world has the population of a country set so much aside for retirement."

Don't look at me like that - it's not my fault that the BEA counts pension contributions as income. Just because you or I might count that money as "savings" doesn't mean that Uncle Sugar does. That's how the handwringers get to whine about "we haven't saved anything since the late '70's" (always neglecting to mention the institution of IRA accounts).

There has definitely been an increase in the amount of credit used (and interest paid - and received). My bet is that we'll see a total DSR of about 12 before Bernanke gets done.

Volcker took out 2.18 million jobs from August '81 to December '82. The economy added 3.454 and 3.877 million jobs in '83 and '84. Those are numbers which have never been matched. Zero would have to come up with more than 11 million jobs to reach those numbers as a percentage of the total workforce. Of course, Volcker had lots of Boomers to work with. Bernanke doesn't.



Good grief. Clipped from the transcript:

That kind of notion of shared benefits and burdens is something that I think has been lost for too long, and it's something that I'd like to see restored.

Maybe the American people aren't informed about how much money UAW workers at the failing big 3 actually make. Why does it feel like Obama is putting his gruppy paws on my wallet?


Keep this up and I'll have to resort to the old family custom of stitching industrial diamongs into the seams of my overcoat in preparation of fleeing.


Here's an interesting article in Reuters on capturing carbon emissions. That makes me wonder. Animals ingest and burn a lot of organic material. Imagine how much burning goes on in the system of a horse for example. What is our CO2 emissions? How much do we exhale, and also how much in animal waste. I wonder if we could imitate the cleaner burning that goes on in animals and use that idea for cars.



Rick Ballard


I don't know why you'd say that. The rebound on this downturn should be pretty good. Not as strong as '83-84 but probably as good as '92-94. The demographics for less than 5% unemployment are very strong. We could see mid 3% within two years.

Maybe the American people aren't informed about how much money UAW workers at the failing big 3 actually make.
Well, some of those statistics are a little misleading, too... You would think that the "average" of what an "employee" "makes" would be calculated by taking the total earned income and dividing by the total number of employees. Or by taking the earned income earned by the employees and adding in the benefits that go to the employees and the employees' families -- which is, of course, a much bigger number. But no, they take the pension money and the pensioners' health costs and add THOSE into the numerator, too, without adding the pensioners into the denominator.

And if the big three go bankrupt, the pensions are insured, and the retirees' health costs are the taxpayers' responsibility (through medicare.) We've managed to created such a goofy definition of "what the auto employees make" that it includes billions of dollars which will still get spent even if there were no automakers and no automaker employees.


"Just for you, yes Brokaw is nuts: With Gas Prices Down Brokaw Wants To Tax Them To $4 A Gallon"

It would be too good to be true if Obama actually tried to implement that...


I think the DNC should bail out the NYT and the LAT.


That was what I was pointing out, in my own roundabout way. Now if the President elect would stop suggesting crazy things; you too Brokaw, we could get out of this with our dignity intact (kind of)


Well, cathy, life in these united States must be especially frustrating for those who can do math.

Rick, I was referring to the constant tales of woe. I don't know how this will winkle out but I tend to be an optimist. Now that i realize that the same idiotic forces that prevent progress (for example greenies) will be besetting The One, I am back to my usual belief that we are a big, stupid country for whom God has a special fondness.


Yes, the "really big number" of 70+ an hour includes the goldplated pensions and goldplated healthcare too. I'm still not buying a junk car built by GM, Ford, or Chysler, and though I'd like too see them in C11 and the thug union eating dirt, I'm old enough to realize that the preening in DC earlier was for Congress to "show who's boss." The automakers will get the money, either by re-working the $25 billion they already got to build golfcarts green cars or the $34 billion they asked for last week. And they can continue on building junk cars all under the watchful eye of an "auto czar".


As usual Clarice, you're right on the mark, I've let events of the last month cloud my
usual optimism about how things turn out. It just seems the 'wurlitzer of woe" has been cranked up to 'eleven' in this last while; whether or not it's warranted. Boy i'm just a font of alliteration lately. Didn't anyone learn from Greenspan to be as cryptic and indicipherable when giving economic or policy news. This too shall pass.


Хорошая работа!


Concerning a possible rollback on Environmentalism by the next Administration in order to green light their building schemes:

Obviously environmental legislation and it's allies has tied the hands of development/drilling etc in this country, and helped demonize energy and defeat the Right. Well now that the other side is in power, should we expect to see simply a lack of new stories heralding climate change, or instead convenient stories detailing how previous reports were in error? Or both?

For instance, off the top of my head, just this past week Climate Change has been charged responsibility for out of whack turtle ovulation cycles, a strained Colorado River system, near extinction of some kind of lemur rat in Northern Canada, and something else up north here that makes no sense whatever considering we are colder than normal. Will that sort of headline just go away, and if so, do you guys know if anybody tracks the frequency of these sort of stories, so that comparisons can be made as to how they are reported under Conservative versus Liberal Administrations?


Laugh of the week. LUN.


That's a NYT link for those who abstain.


Sunny, that was hilarious. The line following the article was even funnier, though unintentionally: Maureen Dowd is off today


Powerline on Cheney:

Protection of our homeland and preservation of innocent American lives form the core of the Cheney legacy.

I love Dick Cheney.



Wizbang notes a bit of a double standard in economic reporting. Back in Dec. 2000:

The mainstream media seemed fearful that a mere utterance of doubt by Bush/Cheney would set the financial markets reeling.

Contrast that with Obama, 2008:

The economy is going to get worse before it gets better," he said twice in the early moments of the interview, taped Saturday in Chicago.

And we get a collective media swoon...



The NYT from Sunny Day's link:

Joe, a k a Samuel J. Wurzelbacher, was no good as a citizen, having failed to pay his full share of taxes...

Where does NYT stand on Marc Rich who owed more than $48 million in taxes and was a fugitive for not paying those taxes? And what do they think of Eric Holder for facilitating that pardon?

just askin...


'wurlitzer of woe"

Nice. Very nice.


If Joe the Plumber wants the Times to think he's a model citizen and author, all he has to do is build a couple bombs in his basement to murder serviceman, then write a book about it being a Republican Presidents fault. Worked for Bill Ayers.


Wow, Instapundit links a story that answers my Climate Headline question. Good to know there are some other conspiracy theorists out there.

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