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September 27, 2010

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TGSG

but but but it's so haaaaaaaard

JM Hanes

"The magnification is not quite clear enough but I suspect Barack's flag lapel pin is also upside down."

Nah, it just looks upside down from a distance.

Pledge of Allegiance

matt

maybe they are preparing to diss the Philippines and Burma. In the carefully calibrated Obama/Clinton foreign policy, these countries may simply no longer matter as Venezuela, Iran, Brazil and Ecuador are in ascendance. Ever since Tegucigalpa, things have changed, man....

Much more humerous in my opinion is the attempt by the vulnerable Politburo members to disassociate themselves from Dear Leader.

Obama/Pelosi/Reid got more support for their agenda than Kim Jong Il in the NoKo by-election for Dear Leader from these clowns and now they're trying to distance themselves? Really?

They're exerting their sudden independence by doing what exactly? Parting their hair on the left? Wearing mismatched socks? Not tucking in their shirts?

This is truly a desperate measure. The last session of Congress showed about as much divergence of opinion as the 1940 Reichstag elections.

bgates

Is that the best you can do, wingnut? Any time one of you jokers tries to tear down President Obama, I hear the same few tired complaints.
Obama hung a flag upside down.
Obama hung another flag upside down.
Obama bows to foreign dictators.
Obama thinks Austrian is a language.
Obama doesn't know profit and earnings mean the same thing.
Obama thinks profit is part of overhead.
Obama doesn't understand how car insurance works.
Obama can't function without his teleprompter.
Obama can't pronounce "corpsman".
Obama doesn't know Memorial Day is to honor deceased veterans.
Obama thinks we can eliminate the need to import oil by inflating our tires properly.
Obama thinks his great-uncle liberated Poland during World War II.
Obama can't derive the Spanish phrase for "Fourth of May" from the well-known fact that "Cinco de Mayo" means "Fifth of May".
Obama thinks Mexico was a country before the US.
Obama gave the Queen of England an iPod with his speeches on it.
Obama gave the Prime Minister a $25 DVD collection from Walmart.
-That won't work in the UK.
--Which doesn't matter because the PM is legally blind.
Obama apologizes to China for our human rights record while sending the Dalai Lama out with the trash.
Obama golfs more often than Bush.
Obama goes to more parties than Bush.
Obama is more partisan than Bush.

But you know what I never hear in all of these so-called "complaints"? Any response to the fact that Bush looks like a monkey. Because he does. What do you have to say to that, wingnuts who liked a President who looks like a monkey. And don't just say that Obama looks like a monkey, because that's racist.

Bush looks like a monkey. Google it.

matt

a macaca, bgates?

My own take on "independent Democrats", another of the great oxymorons, LUN.

daddy the "Extremist"

">http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap100927.html"> Dancing With The Stars?

Clarice

HEH, bgates..you monkey...

SteveP

Obama looks like a monkey.

Jim

A monkey would do a better job than Obama

rse

Anybody else suspicious to wake up this morning to the news that the Internet needs to be regulated to make wiretapping easier?

Maybe the feds should own the NYT. It does such an excellent job being a dissemination source for getting out "their" story.

rse

Jack Cashill's fine article previewing the hijacking of the 2010 election will likely make us all want to be available as monitors on November 2.

Chilling.

LUN

Extraneus

Elections chief says Chavez's allies win majority in Venezuelan congressional vote

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Elections chief says Chavez's allies win majority in Venezuelan congressional vote.
That's the whole article.
Janet

A general question...has the biased coverage of Dem. vs Rep. always been THIS bad? I've always been kinda naturally conservative, but didn't become engaged in the details of politics until maybe 2003 (started listening to talk radio, read tons of conservative books, went to a pro troops rally).
It is unbelievable to me how ugly & mocking the newscasters & the media are to Republicans.
I can almost use the word "every"....every conservative group is evil, fringe, out to screw citizens, made up of shady unqualified leaders. Every liberal group is non partisan, a consumer watch dog group, respected, uber qualified experts.

Even with all the inroads that have been made...IMO our biggest enemy is the media & the entertainment industry....& the schools that churn out the brainwashed people that work in those fields.

Old Lurker

Ya know, sometimes the Monday news is just too depressing.

Two stories do not bode well:

Obama administration proposes reducing the threshold of wire transfers of money to off shore accounts in which the Feds are to be notified from $10,000 to $0.

Obama Administration proposes sweeping rules requiring access to all types of internet traffic, whether encoded or not.

Jane (sit on the couch or save your country)

Janet,

I think it has pretty much been this way in my lifetime. Watergate was pretty stark in that regard - not that it didn't need to be covered, but comparing it to the fawning coverage of Clinton during his travails, the bias seems to have always been there.

In short, the media sucks.

centralcal

Janet: apparently there is a poll over at Politico of supposed "likely voters" and where they get their news, who they are influenced, by etc. etc.

I never trust media polls. However, that said, it would seem that most of these likely voters have never heard of MessNBC's big names: Schultz, Madcow and Doberman.

Janet

I read rse's link & find it so depressing that immigrants (legal & illegal) flee socialist, thug elite run countries...& then come here & vote for the same thing!...or worse, they are FORCED to vote for the same thing by thug elite community organizers in their ethnic enclaves.

Janet

Well at least that is good news centralcal. IMO we also need a conservative Univision-type channel. That Tito Munoz was great at the 9-12 Rally, & we are fools to ignore the power of the entertainment industry on non-news junkie citizens.

rse

OL & Clarice-

Isn't it nice that the Wapo gives a forum to Bill's brother, Rick Ayers? LUN

Must have been quite the family- don't miss his reference to "global cooperation, sustainable economies, and equity" as where all countries need to be heading.

Old Lurker

Janet, that is not much different than folks fleeing the NE to NC then voting for the services that ruined their home states, nor folks fleeing CA to UT or WY and doing the same.

Old Lurker

Is the WaPo still in business, RSE? Mrs. OL still gets it for the style section but I skip it entirely. Blood pressure, you know.

Jack is Back!

There is a contrast that even the left can't ignore and when they do all you have to do is shake your head and walk away. Ignorance is not bliss. LUN

David Bossie is not behind this one but I'll bet 12 to a dozen he is lurking in the shadows ready to strike.

Janet

from rse link - love the Weather Underground Bill Ayers reference - " He is the co-author, with his brother William Ayers, of the forthcoming "Teaching the Taboo" from Teachers College Press." Nothing on who William Ayers is.

Yeah OL, I asked to stop getting the WaPo for my birthday present this summer. I didn't get it....but as of this week, my husband said we are gonna only get it on weekends from now on. Progress!!!
It is my great shame that we give money for that propaganda. It is the last crap that we subscribe to though, having ended other subscriptions over the years.

Janet

Janet, that is not much different than folks fleeing the NE to NC then voting for the services that ruined their home states, nor folks fleeing CA to UT or WY and doing the same.

Leftists are like a plague of locusts.

Rick Ballard

"It is the last crap that we subscribe to though, having ended other subscriptions over the years."

Janet,

That's the answer to your question above. The MFM have (as Jane notes) been primarily propaganda organs for the commie world view for 50-60 years. I'd say that they've turned the amps to 11 since 2004 but they slammed into real diminishing return problems back in the '90's.

They face the same problem which confronted the USSR. Reality doesn't run on rainbows and unicorn farts. They share the same future as the USSR as well.

anduril

Good article in the NYT re Stuxnet:

A Silent Attack, but Not a Subtle One

By JOHN MARKOFF


AS in real warfare, even the most carefully aimed weapon in computer warfare leaves collateral damage.

The Stuxnet worm was no different.

The most striking aspect of the fast-spreading malicious computer program — which has turned up in industrial programs around the world and which Iran said had appeared in the computers of workers in its nuclear project — may not have been how sophisticated it was, but rather how sloppy its creators were in letting a specifically aimed attack scatter randomly around the globe.

The malware was so skillfully designed that computer security specialists who have examined it were almost certain it had been created by a government and is a prime example of clandestine digital warfare. While there have been suspicions of other government uses of computer worms and viruses, Stuxnet is the first to go after industrial systems. But unlike those other attacks, this bit of malware did not stay invisible.

If Stuxnet is the latest example of what a government organization can do, it contains some glaring shortcomings. The program was splattered on thousands of computer systems around the world, and much of its impact has been on those systems, rather than on what appears to have been its intended target, Iranian equipment. Computer security specialists are also puzzled by why it was created to spread so widely.

Global alarm over the deadly computer worm has come many months after the program was suspected of stealthily entering an Iranian nuclear enrichment plant, perhaps carried on a U.S.B. memory drive containing the malware.

Computer security specialists have speculated that once inside the factory and within the software that controls equipment, the worm reprogrammed centrifuges made by a specific company, Siemens, to make them fail in a way that would be virtually undetectable. Whether the program achieved its goal is not known.

Much speculation about the target has focused on the Iran nuclear plant at Natanz. In mid-July the Wikileaks Web site reported that it had learned of a serious nuclear accident at the plant. But international nuclear inspectors say no evidence of one exists.

The timing is intriguing because a time stamp found in the Stuxnet program says it was created in January, suggesting that any digital attack took place long before it was identified and began to attract global attention.

The head of the Bushehr nuclear plant in Iran said Sunday that the worm had affected only the personal computers of staff members, Reuters reported. Western nations say they do not believe Bushehr is being used to develop nuclear weapons. Citing the state-run newspaper Iran Daily, Reuters reported that Iran’s telecommunications minister, Reza Taghipour, said the worm had not penetrated or caused “serious damage to government systems.”

Siemens has said that the worm was found in only 15 plants around the world using its equipment and that no factory’s operations were affected. But now the malware not only is detectable, but also is continuing to spread through computer systems around the world through the Internet.

It is also raising fear of dangerous proliferation. Stuxnet has laid bare significant vulnerabilities in industrial control systems. The program is being examined for clues not only by the world’s computer security companies, but also by intelligence agencies and countless hackers.

“Proliferation is a real problem, and no country is prepared to deal with it,” said Melissa Hathaway, a former United States national cybersecurity coordinator. The widespread availability of the attack techniques revealed by the software has set off alarms among industrial control specialists, she said: “All of these guys are scared to death. We have about 90 days to fix this before some hacker begins using it.”

The ability of Stuxnet to infiltrate these systems will “require a complete reassessment” of security systems and processes, starting with federal technology standards and nuclear regulations, said Joe Weiss, a specialist in the security of industrial control systems who is managing partner at Applied Control Solutions in Cupertino, Calif.

One big question is why its creators let the software spread widely, giving up many of its secrets in the process.

One possibility is that they simply did not care. Their government may have been so eager to stop the Iranian nuclear program that the urgency of the attack trumped the tradecraft techniques that traditionally do not leave fingerprints, digital or otherwise.

While much has been made in the news media of the sophistication of Stuxnet, it is likely that there have been many other attacks of similar or even greater sophistication by intelligence agencies from many countries in the past. What sets this one apart is that it became highly visible.

...

Danube of Thought

Obama doesn't know Memorial Day is to honor deceased veterans.

Some of whom were there in the audience.

Clarice

Newsbusters brings us joyous tidings:

The Christiane Amanpour as "This Week" host experiment so far is a huge failure for ABC as ratings have plummeted since she took over the Sunday political talk show. Last Sunday's program attracted 29 percent less viewers than the same day last year. Making matters worse for ABC executives is the fact that Amanpour's numbers are far worse than interim host Jake Tapper's who did most of the anchoring after George Stephanopoulos left for "Good Morning America." As Steve Krakauer reported Monday, the decision to bring Amanpour over from CNN is so far not looking like a good one:

Captain Hate

The thought of anybody from the Ayers family lecturing anybody in a business section of a newspaper shows how witless the Downtown Daily Worker has become. Tom Ayers was the CEO of Commonwealth Edison, which is as close to a government job as you can get since your market is defined for you and there's essentially no competition; even less than in school systems.

Danube of Thought

Politico:

A significant majority of voters are considering voting against President Barack Obama in the 2012 election, expressing sour views of his new health care law and deep skepticism about his ability to create jobs and grow the sluggish economy, according to the latest POLITICO / George Washington University Battleground Poll.

Only 38 percent of respondents said Obama deserves to be reelected, even though a majority of voters hold a favorable view of him on a personal level. Forty-four percent said they will vote to oust him, and 13 percent said they will consider voting for someone else.

Porchlight

Thank you, Clarice, for that sweet news about the vile Amanpour. Wouldn't you just love to see her get the hook?

Dan W

"Forty-four percent said they will vote to oust him"

Doesn't mean much since 46% (2008 results) of the people voted against him in the first place.

Janet

Here is the Amanpour ratings are crap post and here is the Newsbusters post - also about Amanpour - that made me raise my earlier question..."Amanpour Rues Lack of Appreciation for Obama’s ‘Amazing’ Achievements, Then Slams ‘Bizarre’ & ‘Fringe Quality’ of GOP Candidates"

Danube of Thought

Remember the Coffee Party? You'll love this update, particularly the part where some sap from Newsweek gets skewered.

squaredance

Here is a great read to start the week

Who would have imagined 20 years ago that the USA would one day no longer even be able to manufacture regular light bulbs?

I would imagine that the electorate does not even know that the government is "phasing out" light bulbs" in 1012, or even that it had the power to do so.

(and we wonder why GE backs Obama.)

How absurd. How pathetic. How disgusting.

It is an loony as the UK or the EU.

Danube of Thought

46% (2008 results) of the people voted against him in the first place

But 53% voted for him, and only 38% say they would do it again.

anduril

Super article by Grant Smith:

Free Pollard Now, Pay Later
Declassified FBI file reveals cost of ignoring Israeli espionage


The proposal to free spy Jonathan Pollard in exchange for Israel extending a temporary freeze on settlement building has now received support from four Democrats in Congress. Although many claim Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu initiated this latest bid to free Pollard, it may not be that simple. Since the 1990s the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations has publicly and privately called for Pollard’s release. The 52 organizations in the Conference constitute a key block in the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s (AIPAC) executive committee. Hitching Pollard’s release to any suitably strong vehicle – whether steaming in from Israel or propelled from within the U.S. – is therefore an AIPAC priority. Like its behind-the-scenes support for Israel’s clandestine nuclear weapons program, Pollard’s release is not something AIPAC can lobby for openly. This is because – as with many of AIPAC’s initiatives – freeing Pollard is both unpopular and a zero-sum game in which America must lose in order for Israel to win.

The logic behind exonerating one massive illegality to temporarily stanch another seems to be that in exercising clemency the U.S. will win time to advance the so-called “peace process” underway between Israelis and Palestinians. But will freeing Pollard instead only touch off yet another crippling wave of Israeli espionage against the United States? Has exercising leniency toward the many instances of Israel-related espionage ever worked in the past? Over 400 pages of FBI news clippings [.pdf] released on Sept. 7, 2010, in response to a 2009 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for files about the 2005 AIPAC espionage investigation reveal one inescapable reality: now that the “free Pollard” initiative is underway, American governance will likely suffer greatly whether or not President Obama ultimately chooses to reward yet another crime committed in the name of Israel.

The news sources clipped by the FBI are broad, ranging from “Chalabi-gate: None Dare Call It Treason” by Justin Raimondo (May 28, 2004) to “Still Dreaming of Tehran” by Robert Dreyfuss and Laura Rozen (April 12, 2004). Rozen’s analysis seems to be an FBI favorite, appearing in multiple instances and highlighted with markings etched by anonymous G Men. The FBI even boxed in a cryptic reference in her article “The Big Chill” from The Nation on July 14, 2005:

“The Nation has learned that among the documents the FBI has in its possession is a memo written by [Steven J.] Rosen in 1983, soon after he joined AIPAC, to his then-boss describing his having been informed about the contents of a classified draft of a White House position paper concerning the Middle East and telling his boss that their inside knowledge of this draft might enable the group to influence the final document. The significance would seem to be an effort by the FBI to establish a pattern of Rosen’s accessing classified information to which he was not authorized, not just from Franklin but over many years. Rosen’s attorneys declined to comment on the allegation.”

That reference is enlightening. The FBI held back in its pursuit of Steve Rosen in 1983, but by 1984 it was forced by the U.S. trade representative to launch a full- blown investigation into how Rosen’s AIPAC trade research team obtained yet another classified document full of still-classified American industrial secrets. By 1986 the FBI even learned that Israeli Minister of Economics Dan Halpern passed the stolen document to AIPAC – but the DOJ shut down the investigation after Halpern claimed diplomatic immunity. The DOJ thus thwarted the FBI’s plans to interview U.S. government officials or possibly other Americans that might have leaked the document to Israel. U.S. economic interest groups from pharmaceutical makers to the bromine industry complained bitterly about the DOJ’s failure to enforce statutes protecting them from such abuses. Prosecutorial leniency for AIPAC espionage in 1984 had adverse economic consequences that undermined confidence in subsequent bilateral trade agreements. But Pollard’s capture and prosecution during the very midst of the earlier AIPAC espionage investigation seemed to indicate the U.S. was – in one limited instance at least – sometimes capable of enforcing the laws of the land.

The newly released FBI clipping file also includes an Oct. 20, 2006, Time article detailing a federal investigation into whether Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif.) – in exchange for help from AIPAC to obtain leadership of the House Intelligence Panel – agreed to intervene with the Bush administration to convince it to go easy on AIPAC’s Weissman and Rosen. Again prosecutorial leniency prevailed, and nothing came of the Harman investigation. By 2009 reporter Jeff Stein revealed that Harman had been overheard on a 2005 federal wiretap telling a suspected Israeli agent that she would lobby the Justice Department to reduce espionage-related charges against the indicted pair.

...

It is clear from the news clippings that AIPAC’s goal – as exercised though Rosen and Weissman – was gathering enough kindling to set ablaze U.S. military strikes against Israel’s arch-nemesis Iran, securing inside information on the president’s policy options and other fuel it could use to incite the media and public before George W. Bush left office. While it is touching that the FBI was at the time thumbing through Mother Jones articles lamenting that the forces behind the launching of one disastrous war on false pretexts in the Middle East were jockeying for yet another, the totality of the FBI file documents the collapse of the rule of law through DOJ intransigence. The DOJ should have indicted AIPAC for espionage in 2005 – which probably would have led to its demise – rather than gingerly pursuing two AIPAC operatives (one is now suing AIPAC for “defamation”). Instead, a DOJ back-room deal permitted AIPAC to walk, culminating in the current bid to free one of the most notorious spies ever caught on American soil and a renewed drive to hit Iran through any means. The DOJ has, over time, proven to be a moribund destination where Israeli espionage cases go to be ignored, neglected [.pdf], or pardoned.

Ever since it sprang from the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ U.S. “information office” in the early 1950s, AIPAC has engaged in many covert activities designed to serve its foreign principals – all at tremendous moral and financial cost to America. The Pollard-pardon-for-illegal-settlements-freeze proposal should be considered seriously by all Americans and the U.S. government – not as part of any credible peace process, but rather as a signal that it’s time to re-register AIPAC as an Israeli foreign agent and implement a new no-tolerance policy toward Israeli espionage within our hobbled Department of Justice.

Clarice

Math is soooo hard, DoT.

Porchlight

Doesn't mean much since 46% (2008 results) of the people voted against him in the first place.M.

But it does mean that he's lost a quarter of his support, where as the "kick him out" side has lost almost none of its support. That could make the difference if the 13% "other candidate" group splits evenly between the two or breaks toward the GOP.

It's all a long way off, of course, but it's interesting positioning as we head toward November. At any rate, Congressional Dems can't seem to figure out that he's not helping them on the campaign trail, can they?

anduril

Hmmmm. Business Insider offers...an insider tip:

Think Israel Is Going To Bomb Iran? Then This Is The Fund For You

Fund manager Randy Slifka is currently designing a fund to take advantage of the potential gains of a strike by Israel on Iran, according to Fortune's Dan Primack.
The investment is labeled as a "geopolitical volatility fund," called GeoVol, and is designed as a hedging instrument for investors concerned about such a scenario. The fund would also pay out 20% of profits to Israelis in the event of an attack, according to its promotional materials.

The fund is to be invested in a wide array of asset classes and its target value is $500 million.

It's not clear what, exactly, it's investing in, but you could surmise that oil, water, and defense-related instruments are high on the list.

Dave (in MA)

How do you say "schadenfreude" in Persian?

Pagar

After you read rse's 06:14 AM fine link, reading about this group becomes more urgent. What the Obama Admin is doing to aid Them is terrifying.

http://bigpeace.com/pspoole/2010/09/27/fbi-escorts-known-hamas-operative-through-top-secret-national-counterterrorism-center-as-outreach-to-muslim-community/

IMO, the efforts you see from the leftists to defeat America are the direct results of allowing William Ayers and Maxine Green to take control of the American education system.

Janet

squaredance,
That is exactly the kind of insanity to highlight about Democrats. If we want minority citizen votes, we need some simple ads that tell them the Democrat/leftists want to outlaw cheap lightbulbs! They are coming for your SUVs and trucks too!!! They want to tell you what you can eat...whether you can smoke...what kind of windows you install in your home. What is the Spanish word for busybodies?

jimmyk

I usually skip over Anduril's cut & paste jobs, but this line gave me a chuckle:

The malware was so skillfully designed that computer security specialists who have examined it were almost certain it had been created by a government.

Janet, I tried for the "only on weekends" compromise for the NY Times, but failed. The only plus for subscribing to the Times is the free access to the archives, so one can read articles written when the paper was less of a joke than it is now.

PD

Maybe Amanpour and Martha Stewart can combine their failing new shows and their, cough, talents and get a ratings bump.

PD

We're in good hands:

FBI employees reported to be cheating on security test

Perhaps the FBI and SEC can combine, then they can watch porn on their government computers while they cheat on their security tests.

anduril

I usually skip over Anduril's cut & paste jobs...

Heh, the mandatory disclaimer, jimmyk. IOW:

"I usually skip over Anduril's cut & paste jobs...but I was four paragraphs into this one and came across this nugget that anduril failed to highlight in bold type, but which my close reading enabled me to spot."

anduril

A few FBI employees, including several supervisors and a legal adviser, exploited a programing flaw to reveal the answers on their computers, according to the investigation into four FBI offices around the country and several individuals.

Hmmmm. Does this mean they actually passed the test?

Captain Hate

Still nothing in the WSJ about Coates testimony

anduril

So Captain Hate, you crapped in your mess kit the other day, eh? Some people never learn. Gonna be on better behavior now?

Old Lurker

Cap'n, Amity Schlaes did a great job In Forgotten Man describing how the Progs under FDR used control of the utilities as their main gateway into control of business and people. As I read it, I was thinking of Ayer's old man at ComEd as a logical extension of the rot.

narciso

The premise of that story, is instructive, PD,
the other guidelines more likely focused on the 'wrong' targets, from the perspective of
our betters, this is the guy overseeing the probe of the Black Panther case, right?

Jane (sit on the couch or save your country)

I would imagine that the electorate does not even know that the government is "phasing out" light bulbs" in 1012, or even that it had the power to do so.

I went to Walmart on Saturday and bought 28 regular light bulbs in anticipation of the change. At the check-out the woman asked me why so many and I told her they were being outlawed. She said by whom? I told her the government. She then railed against the government so I invited her to the Tea party.

It was a weird exchange.

Neo

Raz: (Blumenthal 50, McMahon 45)

Porchlight

That's interesting Jane - shows how little some of this news is trickling out to folks. Same with the Obamacare bad news, I would imagine.

Once the information starts really getting out there, though, it's going to be even worse news for Bammers.

Dave (in MA)

Auntie Zeituni gets free lightbulbs.

hit and run

Dan:
Doesn't mean much since 46% (2008 results) of the people voted against him in the first place

http://articles.cnn.com/2003-02-27/politics/bush.poll_1_bush-approval-rating-sampling-error-poll-respondents?_s=PM:ALLPOLITICS>This was a few months later into Bush's first term:

Support for Bush's re-election falls below 50 percent

February 27, 2003

The percentage of registered voters who say they would support President Bush in 2004 fell below 50 percent for the first time, according to a new CNN/USA TODAY/Gallup poll, which finds more Americans concerned about the economy.

Of course that was just before we invaded Iraq,so make of that what you will. Oh,and just how bad was the economy in http://money.cnn.com/2003/03/07/news/economy/unemployment/index.htm>February 2003?

Unemployment rate rises to 5.8% in February

I looked in vain for any variant of the word "unexpected" from articles on the economy back then.

Jack is Back!

OL,

It was called PUHCA [the public utilities holding company act] and was used to break up horizontally integrated holding companies. At that time (1935) 8 holding companies controlled over 75% of the electric generating business. So PUHCA basically cut them off at the knees, the elbows, the neck. IOW, they couldn't operate all over the place but by state and be regulated by states. Voila! That competition blocking State Public Utility Commission is born. Look up Samuel Insull and you'll get the rest of the story.

Neo

Why is it that I can imagine Conn. AG Blumenthal saying ...
I had the most absurd nightmare. I was poor and no one liked me. I lost my job, I lost my house, Penelope hated me and it was all because of this terrible, awful wrasler woman.

Jack is Back!

First they came for my money and I did nothing.

Then they came for my car's design and horsepower and I did nothing.

Then they came for my books and I did nothing.

Then they came for my internet access and I did nothing.

But now they want my light bulbs and that is a reach too far.

Porchlight

Look up Samuel Insull and you'll get the rest of the story.

That is a fascinating story, JiB. Shlaes' book is more important than ever.

Clarice

I am so happy viewers share my take on Amanpour, Porch. What a stupid, loathsome creature. Her hubbie is no better. Maybe the two of them could join JF Kerry in a new show ,The Continentals.

Danube of Thought

It's going to be fun to watch as the hoarding begins. At that point the population at large will tumble to what's going on, and a potent political issue will have arisen.

I plan to have a garage full of those things before this calendar year is out.

Melinda Romanoff

JiB-

Interesting how Insull went broke, isn't it?

And he went on to be scapegoat for "bad" corporate leadership.

Barbara

Obama administration proposes reducing the threshold of wire transfers of money to off shore accounts in which the Feds are to be notified from $10,000 to $0.

OL,

Do you have a link on this? Thanks.

Ignatz

--"The magnification is not quite clear enough but I suspect Barack's flag lapel pin is also upside down."--

Everything's fine in Barryworld.
It's the rest of us who should be flying our flags upside down.

Porchlight

Maybe the two of them could join JF Kerry in a new show ,The Continentals.

Yes, and Terayza, Continental poster girl, must be included as well.

Rob Crawford

Maybe the two of them could join JF Kerry in a new show ,The Continentals.

ITYM "The Aristocrats".

Jack is Back!

Melinda,

My proudest accomplishment during my time in DC was to be part of repealing PUHCA with PURPA - which unbridled utility competition so that companies like Constellation and FPL are all over the place offering competitive utility provision. Of course, others will say it also gave birth to the likes of Enron but not necessarily so. Too long to explain that here.

OT: Hmmmm! LUN. Go to the link in the post that shows the video of the dinner Iamanutjob had in New York with Iranian-Americans. The writer could have gone further and pondered whether the FBI and Homeland Security have this vid and are looking into these sympathizers, one disguised as a victim of Iranian thuggery. Its the article in The Corner about the dinner.

Sue

Jane,

My husband did the same thing Friday night. Yes, we are boring. We are at the Walmart on a Friday night, buying up all the light bulbs. People were asking us why so many? They didn't believe him when he said they were going to be obsolete because the government had outlawed them.

Dave (in MA)

I've been picking up a couple of 60W 4-packs every time I visit a Home Depot or a Lowes. Perhaps I should get more than that.

If Ann is out there, she'll want to see http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1315114/Pictured-Michelle-Obamas-hair-raising-encounter-First-Lady-Cameroon.html>this, I'm sure.

Neo
The multi-millionaire owner of the Segway company died in a freak accident yesterday when he rode one of the high-tech two-wheel machines off a cliff and into a river.

Former miner Jimi Heselden, 62, plunged into the River Wharfe while riding around his West Yorkshire estate in Boston Spa on a rugged country version of the Segway.

He bought the firm last December and was using one of the machines - which use gyroscopes to remain upright and are controlled by the direction in which the rider leans - to inspect the grounds of his property.

He is a Yorkshire miner who lost his job 20 years ago in the wave of redundancies that followed the bitter 1984 miners' strike [think Billy Elliot]. Now, in a remarkable reversal of fortune, Jimmy Heselden today is named one of Britain's richest men.

He is a Yorkshire miner who lost his job 20 years ago in the wave of redundancies that followed the bitter 1984 miners' strike. Now [3 April 2005], in a remarkable reversal of fortune, Jimmy Heselden today is named one of Britain's richest men.

Mr Heselden's company, HESCO Bastion, which he founded with his redundancy pay, is thought to be worth £93m. It manufactures portable wire cages that can be filled with earth and sand and which he initially sold to water companies to shore up the sides of canals.

But the "concertainers" have also proved to be adept at stopping bullets, missiles and suicide bombers and as such have become standard military equipment for Nato as well as American and British forces.

matt

you will be happy to know that the canned pumpkin shortage is over per Nestle's news release this morning. Nestle controls approximately 75% of the national canned pumpkin market through it's Libby's brand. That is all.

Captain Hate

So Captain Hate, you crapped in your mess kit the other day, eh? Some people never learn. Gonna be on better behavior now?

What is this about?

Jack is Back!

Matt,

Why have canned pumpkin when you can have more fun picking your own and having more fun than legally allowed while doing it. LUN

Captain Hate

Cap'n, Amity Schlaes did a great job In Forgotten Man describing how the Progs under FDR used control of the utilities as their main gateway into control of business and people. As I read it, I was thinking of Ayer's old man at ComEd as a logical extension of the rot.

I can't think of a more white-bread background for Billy Bombthrower to have come from. One of the most hilarious things I ever heard about Billy was how he was bailed out by his idiot father from some demonstration, leaving all of the underclass similarlarly incarcerated to fend for themselves. Solidarity lite.

SWarren

I've been stocking light bulbs for over six months. The shelves in my laundry room are all full, so now on to the garage next. Way more than I will ever use in my lifetime but I keep on buying them.
Told my kids I'll leave the bulbs to them in my will. Heh! probably enough to last their lifetime too.

Ignatz

--What is this about?--

Yeah, couldn't figure that one out either.

Cecil Turner
The proposal to free spy Jonathan Pollard in exchange for Israel extending a temporary freeze on settlement building has now received support from four Democrats in Congress.
[yawn]

Seriously, who really cares? Pollard isn't even in the same league as guys like Hanssen (who got agents working for us killed) or Walker (who compromised our most sensitive codes), and Israel is an ally. If you're looking for something to be affronted about, we're still paying Hanssen's pension to his wife (your sister, right?) . . . now that's a travesty.

Jack is Back!

Ignatz,

You can't figure out Anduril? I had him figured out after reading one of his cut and past jobs. He must have lost his prescription to Ritilin.

Jane (sit on the couch or save your country)

My husband did the same thing Friday night.

I can't figure out how many I need. I decided last night I would die 30 years from yesterday, and I was trying to do the math.

Actually they will probably skyrocket in value and we can all fund our retirement.

Dave (in MA)

...or Zero's "necessarily skyrocket" electricity prices will come to pass and it will have been candles we ought to have been buying.

Jack is Back!

Jane,

The way things are going it is probably better to invest in candles.

Extraneus

What's the over/under on the date they repeal that light bulb law?

Jack is Back!

Ex,

I think it is somewhere between 2012 and 2014. Bush signed the law back in 2007 IIRC. They calculate savings of around $40 billion between 2014 and 2030 but then this is the same government bureaucracy that said ObamaCare would reduce the deficit and make health care less costly. All bulbs and certain other electrical devices have to be 25% more efficient (watts per lumens, I guess) by 2014.

Old Lurker

Barbara, LUN is the WaPo story on wire transfers. The one I saw was in the WSJ.

JiB, my southern roots grandparents were all caught up in that PUCHA mess under FDR in the 30's. It was a double whammy in that it rippled through the ownership of coal mines, and it messed with investors counting on nice dividends from Utility Stocks. And it moved some wealth from the KY-WV-VA coal regions down to TN when the TVA got rolling. Interesting times I grew up hearing about.

And yes, Mel, those Chicago boys like Insul were at the center of the whole thing.

Dave (in MA)

Overheard lunchroom conversation at work from some of the birkenstock bunch (well, that doesn't really narrow it down much) sounded pretty gloomy. These are the same people who were clapping at the cafeteria TV on 1/20/09. ELL OH ELL

glasater

Over the weekend we visited friends who have a cabin up in the Blue Mountain. Cabin is at the 4500 foot level. No power and water is hauled in.
Kerosene lamps provide the light.

The view across a canyon was stunning and it was so quiet except for the birds and ground squirrels.
Absolute heaven!

cathyf
Interesting how Insull went broke, isn't it?

And he went on to be scapegoat for "bad" corporate leadership.

Hey, Melinda, have you ever taken the Free Market Walking Tour of Chicago's Loop? Page 8 is all about Insull, and he's mentioned in several other places.

Porchlight

Actually they will probably skyrocket in value and we can all fund our retirement.

That's what I'm thinking. They will be good for the future barter system too. ;)

Sue

Whether they repeal the law or not, the plant that produces 85% of incandescent light bulbs has shut down. When those on the shelves are gone, they will probably be gone for good. And, to top it all off, the green jobs that were supposed to be created? Yeah. Not so much. The new energy efficient light bulbs are being manufactured in China.

bgates

you will be happy to know that the canned pumpkin shortage is over

I am indeed happy. The lovely Mrs bgates loves canned pumpkin, and for months now the grocery store has been telling us they're out because it's out of season.

Never thought to ask which was out of season, the pumpkin or the cans.

daddy the "Extremist"

"The Christiane Amanpour as "This Week" host experiment so far is a huge failure for ABC as ratings have plummeted since she took over the Sunday political talk show."

I wish George Will would quit appearing on that show. Every once in a while he says something sharp and it gets a lot of play, so I wish he would just swear off appearing there and let this thing swirl down the toilet where it belongs.

daddy the "Extremist"

"I would imagine that the electorate does not even know that the government is "phasing out" light bulbs"

Of interest is that China Airlines (a Taiwan Based Company) and 18 other Cargo transporting Airlines, just ">http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-11422787"> got busted for price fixing for Air Cargo Prices. Multi-million dollar fines.

So if lightbulbs are in future only going to be made over there and not here, stand by for corruption amongst the cargo haulers and overseas manufacturers to eventually start increasing the costs to American consumers.

daddy the "Extremist"

Mary Ann Marsh, Dem strategist on Megyn Kelly's show, is this minute saying that John Kerry is right, that the public is too busy in these hard economic times to pay attention and learn anything, and Repub's are taking advantage of this crisis by lying to the public and scaring the ignorant and the poor.

There's the talking point.

anduril

Re the damage that Pollard caused, here's from Wikipedia:

At the 1998 Wye River Conference, Benjamin Netanyahu demanded Pollard's release, and President Clinton made a public statement about reviewing the case.[55] This precipitated an "incredulous" reaction in the American intelligence community.[59] Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, as well as six other former U.S. Secretaries of Defense (Melvin R. Laird, Frank C. Carlucci, Richard B. Cheney, Caspar W. Weinberger, James R. Schlesinger and Elliot L. Richardson) spoke out in opposition to clemency for Jonathan Pollard.[31] They were joined by several senior congressional leaders.[31]

Four past directors of Naval Intelligence, William Studeman, Sumner Shapiro, John L. Butts, and Thomas Brooks, authored a response to the talk of clemency and what they termed "the myths that have arisen from this clever public relations campaign... aimed at transforming Pollard from greedy, arrogant betrayer of the American national trust into Pollard, committed Israeli patriot".[60] They asserted that Pollard passed information to three other countries before engaging in espionage activity on behalf of Israel, and that he had offered his services to a fourth country while he was spying for Israel.[60] They continued,

“ We... feel obligated to go on record with the facts regarding Pollard in order to dispel the myths that have arisen from this clever public relations campaign... aimed at transforming Pollard from greedy, arrogant betrayer of the American national trust in to Pollard, committed Israeli patriot

Pollard pleaded guilty and therefore never was publicly tried. Thus, the American people never came to know that he offered classified information to three other countries before working for the Israelis and that he offered his services to a fourth country while he was spying for Israel. They also never came to understand that he was being highly paid for his services....

Pollard and his apologists argue he turned over to the Israelis information they were being denied that was critical to their security. The fact is, however, Pollard had no way of knowing what the Israeli government was already receiving by way of official intelligence exchange agreements... Some of the data he compromised had nothing to do with Israeli security or even with the Middle East. He betrayed worldwide intelligence data, including sources and methods developed at significant cost to the U.S. taxpayer. As a result of his perfidy, some of those sources are lost forever.

...Another claim Pollard made is that the U.S. government reneged on its bargain not to seek the life sentence. What is not heard is that Pollard's part of the bargain was to cooperate fully in an assessment of the damage he had done and to refrain from talking to the press prior to the completion of his sentencing. He blatantly and contemptuously failed to live up to either part of the plea agreement... It was this coupled with the magnitude and consequences of his criminal actions that resulted in the judge imposing a life sentence... The appellate court subsequently upheld the life sentence.

If, as Pollard and his supporters claim, he has "suffered enough" for his crimes, he is free to apply for parole as the American judicial system provides. In his arrogance, he has refused to do so, but insists on being granted clemency or a pardon.”

Admiral Shapiro, who was himself Jewish, stated that he was troubled by the support of Jewish organizations for Pollard: "We work so hard to establish ourselves and to get where we are, and to have somebody screw it up... and then to have Jewish organizations line up behind this guy and try to make him out a hero of the Jewish people, it bothers the hell out of me".[10]

Eric Margolis alleges that Pollard's spying may have led to the capture and execution of CIA spies in the Eastern Bloc after Israel sold or bartered Pollard's information to the Soviet Union.[61] According to one theory , Israeli businessman and convicted Soviet spy Shabattai Kalmanovich may have been made a scapegoat for information from Pollard that had been willingly shared by Israel with the Soviets in order to secure the release of certain Jewish scientists in the USSR.[62]

JM Hanes

It must be One Man Circle Jerk Day.

anduril

One of the arguments advanced in favor clemency of Pollard (which I've previously addressed) is that such spy exchanges are routine. As I showed, that is false. This argument was also addressed in

Jonathan Pollard: Background and
Considerations for Presidential Clemency

Richard A. Best, Jr.
Specialist in National Defense
Clyde Mark
Specialist in Middle Eastern Affairs
Foreign Affairs and National Defense Division

Best and Mark present a six point pro and con:

Pro #4. Pollard could be traded. Nations often trade spies, exchanging one captured spy for another or for other considerations. There are several possible exchanges: the United States would release Pollard, Egypt would release Azam Azam, an Israeli Druze accused of spying for Israel, and Israel would release many of the 2,000 to 3,000 Palestinians being held in Israeli jails for various crimes. Or, Israel might trade Pollard for Samuel Sheinbein, the young man held in Israel accused of murder in Maryland.

Con #4. Nations exchange foreign spies they have captured for one of their citizens captured and incarcerated in a foreign country. Nations do not trade their own citizens for non-citizens or for people accused of criminal activities. The United States sought legal extradition of Sheinbein.

The Sheinbein case is interesting:

Samuel Sheinbein (born in 1980) is a American convicted murderer. In September 1997, Sheinbein and a former classmate at the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School, Aaron Benjamin Needle, killed Alfredo Enrique Tello, Jr.[1] and then dismembered and attempted to cremate his body in Aspen Hill, Maryland. Needle later hanged himself in his jail cell.

Sheinbein fled through New York to Israel with the help of his father, Sol Sheinbein, an attorney who held dual citizenship in the United States and Israel. Once in Israel, Samuel Sheinbein was arrested. Both the American and Israeli governments attempted to have him extradited, but the Israeli Supreme Court forbade it in a 3-2 ruling in 1999 and he was tried later that year in Israel. (The case led to changes to the law in Israel.) After accepting a plea bargain with prosecutors, Sheinbein was sentenced to 24 years in jail with eligibility for parole in 2013 (when he reaches the age of 33).

According to the Washington Post, these were the terms of Sheinbein's Israeli conviction:

Sheinbein will be eligible to apply for furloughs of 24 to 96 hours beginning in 2003 and to apply for parole in 2013, when he is 33. He is also eligible for conjugal visits immediately. There was no immediate decision on where Sheinbein will be imprisoned.

If he had been tried in Maryland, as both Israel and the United States wanted, he would have faced a maximum punishment of life in prison.


Dave (in MA)

JM Hanes, any day ending with a 'y'.

Clarice

"There's the talking point."

Dems to voters: You are ignorant/
Voters to Dems: Let us show you how ignorant we are.....

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Wilson/Plame