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July 02, 2011

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Extraneus

Who could challenge Obama from his left? Bernie Sanders?

Old Lurker

Hugo Chavez?

Fidel Castro?

Rick Ballard

Extraneous,

Howard Dean. President Obama is his golem and Dean is not happy with him. Remember, Dean's sale of the Democrat Party to Soros, Bing and Lewis was predicated upon this lurch leftward but they were shooting for Havana on the Potomac and wound up with Bucharest. I believe that the assumption was that the President would recognize the depth of his intellectual limitations and accept a level of guidance that he has rejected (they shouldn't have called him Fido to his face). Additionally, the President just isn't smart enough to follow directions beyond maps on how to get out of a phone booth.

Melinda Romanoff

Well put.

sam

Obama will have Hillary as running mate if he senses problems with his base.

hit and run

New video.

Obama came out swinging against corporate jets and corporate jet owners. But he love love loves having his own plane.

Clarice

blogged if , hit.http://pajamasmedia.com/tatler/wp-admin/post.php?post=27810&action=edit&message=6

Jim Ryan

If Ross Perot had been CPUSA and debated Obama on TV, he would have said of him, "This fella isn't presidential material. Why, I wouldn't promote him anywhere past mid-level apparatchik. Maybe Assistant to the Vice-Chairman of Agricultural Planning at best."

He's too self-absorbed and stupid to be ruthless and cunning enough to be a real leftist.

Melinda Romanoff

Nice job, hit!

centralcal

Here is Clarice's Tatler link to Jeff Hobbs (psst, it should be Dobbs).

ha ha ha ha. I love humor first thing in the morning!

hit and run

Thanks,clarice!
xoxoxo

centralcal

More humor in the morning. The Presidential Seal has jumped off his lectern and now flies off his limo. I think it really, really, really doesn't like him!

While in Philly . . .

Just ask, ahem, President Obama. Seems the big guy lost a magnetic presidential seal that was affixed to the side of his limousine as he wrapped up a fundraising visit to Philly on Thursday.

The seal flew off the side of the limo and whipped by motorists in the eastbound lanes of Interstate 76, where it was presumed lost . . . until shortly before noon yesterday.

narciso

It's the kamikaze telepromter, it decided it
only had one life to give for it's country.

Clarice

Woot Woot..thanks cc. I still am without my coffee but I corrected the error.
Very funny, narciso.

narciso

Thanks, clarice, should of said 'like' it's like they are trying to tell us something.
The Tatler link didn't work, it lead to the login screen

Extraneus

Good one, hit. Hey, speaking of planes, does anyone have a link to the NY flyover report?

May 6, 2009:

"The report, I believe, will be concluded at some point this week. We'll release its findings and release a photo," White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said during his daily press briefing.
Melinda Romanoff

{crickets}

narciso

Glenn Carle, is trying to jin up the old 'torture' game, but he's in the wrong administration, no one really cares anymore

Haven't checked it out yet.  Stretch.

PJ Media is suing DoD for info about a climate conference.
=============

That's what I should do!

Hah, now it looks like I wrote the headline. Hey, it was easy.
================

Melinda Romanoff

The Who, What, and How Much/Many details for Copenhagen. All data redacted by the DoD. Judicial Watch is co-filer. Interesting to watch, but it will take time. Lots of time.

Captain Hate

Dean's sale of the Democrat Party to Soros, Bing and Lewis was predicated upon this lurch leftward

A number of years ago I busted Peter Lewis's chops at a CWRU alumni breakfast for jettisoning some of my fellow classmates from his Prog insurance company; earning me the stares of disapproval from some of the toadies that the diploma mill spit out in copious numbers. If I'd had a clue about what a malignant prick he really was I'd have hit him a lot harder because, unlike what the quislings thought, I went pretty easy on him.

Rick Ballard

Narciso,

Have you ever read anything concerning the turnover in the prog base? The "energy" of the Deaniac contingent is generated (as Rich has noted several times) by the poli-sci commissars at our centers of higher indoctrination. The ignorance and naivete required to buy the prog mush BS doesn't endure for most of the Deaniac fringe beyond receipt of their credential and exposure to reality.

I wonder if the current prog blight upon the economy has been deep enough to affect recruitment by the poli sci commissars to the point where their "success" in '06 and '08 cannot be reproduced. Their failure in Wisconsin seems to indicate a great disturbance in the Farce.

SAME SMELL

Steve Benen


July 02, 2011 10:25 AM

When a party refuses to consider bipartisanship

Ezra Klein asked this week whether it’s even possible for President Obama to be bipartisan given congressional Republicans’ approach to governance.

Let’s say you were the Democratic president of the United States, and you wanted to cut a deal with the Republican Party on the debt ceiling. What would you do?

Well, you’d probably start with quiet negotiations to give both sides maximum room to compromise. And then you’d go back to what Republicans had said about deficit reduction in March, which is that a successful plan would be about 85 percent spending cuts and 15 percent tax increases, and you’d offer them that. Your base wouldn’t like it, of course, but hey, you want a deal.

And let’s say you wanted to cut a deal on health-care reform. Presumably, you’d go back to past health-care reform plans the Republican Party had offered and try to craft something similar. You’d notice that Republicans particularly seemed to like the individual mandate — no surprise, given that they invented the thing — so even though you opposed it during the campaign, maybe you’d add that. Sure, liberals wanted Medicare for All, or an employer mandate, but hey, you want a deal.

Global warming? Well, Republicans came up with cap-and-trade in the 1990s, and in 2007, Newt Gingrich had said he’d “strongly support” extending it to carbon emissions, so that’d be an obvious approach.

The point, of course, is that Ezra described President Obama’s approach to enacting his agenda. In 2008, then-candidate Obama promised voters he’d be pragmatic and fair, solving problems by embracing ideas from both parties, building consensus, and trying to bridge the partisan divide.

It’s gone largely unnoticed, but it’s hard to overstate the extent to which Obama kept his word. But dysfunction, partisan acrimony, and gridlock all continue to get considerably worse, due entirely to the deliberate choices of congressional Republicans.

I’ve lost count of how many Republicans ideas Democrats have agreed to accept, only to find that GOP leaders have begun rejecting their own ideas.

As recently as 2008, it was very common for Republican officials at a variety of levels to support cap-and-trade, an individual health care mandate, the DREAM Act, comprehensive immigration reform, trying terrorist suspects in civilian U.S. courts and then imprisoning them on American soil, a payroll tax cut, a bipartisan deficit commission, infrastructure spending, the Economic Development Administration, routinely raising the debt ceiling without preconditions, and funding for Planned Parenthood. If we go back just a little further, we see that GOP officials also used to occasionally support modest tax increases as a way to maintain fiscal sanity.

As recently as three months ago, House Republicans wanted a deficit-reduction plan that included 85% spending cuts and 15% increased revenue.

Now, literally all of these policies aren’t just deemed problematic by Republicans, but are rejected as wholly unacceptable extremism. This week, the leading Senate Republican went so far as to characterize Democratic support for bipartisan compromises as “acting in bad faith.”

Seriously. That’s what he said.

How did all of these policies — some of which originated in Republican circles — go from sensible to radical? The ideas didn’t change; Republican standards did. A Democratic president got elected, telegraphed an openness to proposals the GOP has traditionally supported, and suddenly Republicans didn’t want to take “yes” for an answer anymore.

To Ezra’s question, how is President Obama supposed to work in a bipartisan fashion under these circumstances? He isn’t. I assume that next year, one of the more common complaints from the GOP will be, “Obama said he’d bring people together and reach across the aisle. He failed.”

But he really didn’t. He made good faith efforts to work cooperatively with Republicans, only to find GOP officials who are against the ideas they’re for.

by Steve Benen

Melinda Romanoff

Cap'n-

If you get here, I'll set you down with Santelli for breakfast and you can be entertained in two ways for breakfast.

You will not believe how he starts his day.

(and I would have loved to have been at that breakfast you had, too)

Jane says obamasucks

That was great Hit. I'll link it at YOU TOO too.

A precious conceit of the Western elite.

Woof, Mel. Obama was a horrible weasel at Copenhagen, and probably permanently pissed off the Chinese against him. They took his measure there, as if they hadn't already.

Yes, it'll take time. Inchworm time.
==================

Captain Hate

Mel, I'll do my best to darken your doorstep at some point in the future. Fully armed with some free jazz classics, of course.

Ranger

Funny that in his long lament of Obama's outreach to Republicans, Mr. Benen skips over the "stimulus." Remember how Obama reached out to the Republican leadership and told them the reason they couldn't have any imput was because "I won."

Poor Steven Benen is pining for those good old days when "elections didn't matter that much" because the entrenched elites were in basic agreement on how best to "manage" America. Unfortunately for Mr. Benen and the rest of the credentialed moronotocracy, the "stimulus" and Obamacare have convinced the country that the people who want a "bipartisan" agreement on running the country have no idea what they are doing.

Hey Steve, we had an election in 2010. Your side lost.

Melinda Romanoff

Not. Enough. Cotton.

But I will have clean glasses, or do you prefer something with a bail on it?

Neo
Global warming is a litmus test for our politicians. If they believe in global warming, they are easily deluded fools.

...

Our politicians are easily cowed, and a lot of them don’t seem to care even if they could tell the difference between right and wrong. Our academics have met our lowest expectations of them.

Captain Hate

LOL.

Back to the original point of the thread, I'm wondering if Petraeus made as a condition of accepting the role of CIA director that Steadman Shabazz called off his pit gerbils (apologies to the cute little mammals that are surely undeserving of that comparison to the DOJ vermin). Btw, I'm wondering what the Plame contingency of useless operatives thought of the DOJ keeping the threat of prosecution alive prior to this.

"Yawning" Wealth Gap Heh

China's state media said a multi-party political system would unleash chaos equal to the turbulent period of the Cultural Revolution, as the country marks the Communist Party's 90th birthday.


The state-run Xinhua news agency, in a focus piece published late Friday after the one-party regime celebrated the anniversary, said Western political systems did not suit China's "national conditions."

"If China imitates the West's multi-party parliamentary democratic system, it could repeat the chaotic and turbulent history of the 'Cultural Revolution' when factions sprung up everywhere," the report said.

It added the current political turmoil, economic difficulties and social disorder in some countries "proved" this.

The 1966-1976 Cultural Revolution was a decade of brutal chaos launched by revolutionary leader Mao Zedong to bring down what he perceived as "capitalist" forces after other leaders sought to move away from his radical utopian ideas.

Untold numbers died in the ensuing turmoil as students turned on teachers, officials were purged and the country and its economy were brought to a virtual standstill. The subject is still sensitive today.

The Xinhua comments came as President Hu Jintao warned the Communist Party -- which was founded in July 1921 and took power in 1949 -- faced severe "growing pains" in a speech Friday marking the anniversary.

But he gave no sign that the party intended to loosen the iron grip on political power it has maintained for more than six tumultuous decades.

The Xinhua report singled out huge economic growth over the past 30 years, that had lifted more than 200 million people out of poverty, as proof that the Communist Party was looking out for people's "welfare" and had "legitimacy."

But analysts say political and social reforms do not match the nation's economic success, adding the party is struggling to address a range of complex problems without the flexibility that democracy affords.

These include a yawning wealth gap, high inflation, environmental degradation, demands for autonomy from millions-strong ethnic minorities, and regular reports of corrupt and abusive officials that inflame the public.

Ranger

Our academics have met our lowest expectations of them.

Well, that part is undoubtably true based on this (via Instapudnit):

Arbitrator: University Can't Fire Professor Convicted of Exposing Himself

Edification


Admitting that “some will call me a torturer” is a surefire way to cut yourself off from anyone’s sympathy. But Glenn Carle, a former CIA operative, isn’t sure whether he’s the hero or the villain of his own story.

Distilled, that story, told in Carle’s new memoir The Interrogator, is this: In the months after 9/11, the CIA kidnaps a suspected senior member of al-Qaida and takes him to a Mideast country for interrogation. It assigns Carle — like nearly all his colleagues then, an inexperienced interrogator — to pry information out of him. Uneasy with the CIA’s new, relaxed rules for questioning, which allow him to torture, Carle instead tries to build a rapport with the man he calls CAPTUS.

But CAPTUS doesn’t divulge the al-Qaida plans the CIA suspects him of knowing. So the agency sends him to “Hotel California” — an unacknowledged prison, beyond the reach of the Red Cross or international law.

Carle goes with him. Though heavily censored by the CIA, Carle provides the first detailed description of a so-called “black site.” At an isolated “discretely guarded, unremarkable” facility in an undisclosed foreign country (though one where the Soviets once operated), hidden CIA interrogators work endless hours while heavy metal blasts captives’ eardrums and disrupts their sleep schedules.

Afterward, the operatives drive to a fortified compound to munch Oreos and drink somberly to Grand Funk Railroad at the “Jihadi Bar.” Any visitor to Guantanamo Bay’s Irish pub — O’Kellys, home of the fried pickle — will recognize the surreality.

But Carle — codename: REDEMPTOR — comes to believe CAPTUS is innocent.

“We had destroyed the man’s life based on an error,” he writes. But the black site is a bureaucratic hell: CAPTUS’ reluctance to tell CIA what it wants to hear makes the far-off agency headquarters more determined to torture him. Carle’s resistance, shared by some at Hotel California, makes him suspect. He leaves CAPTUS in the black site after 10 intense days, questioning whether his psychological manipulation of CAPTUS made him, ultimately, a torturer himself.

Eight years later, the CIA unceremoniously released CAPTUS. (The agency declined to comment for this story.) Whether that means CAPTUS was innocent or merely no longer useful as a source of information, we may never know. Carle spoke to Danger Room about what it’s like to interrogate a man in a place too dark for the law to find.

read the interview

http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2011/07/am-i-a-torturer/all/1

Clarice

Gosh, narciso, I keep doing that. I have to remember to close out the Tatler page I'm working on and go back to the main screen for the link.

Neo

In a response filed yesterday to a federal judge’s order May 11, an FBI official offered no denials about the existence of video images captured by more than 20 surveillance cameras operating prior to 9:02 a.m. on April 19, 1995, in the vicinity of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City. Instead, he explained that officials at the bureau merely cannot find the tapes and raised the possibility that they “might have been misfiled and thus could be located somewhere other than in the OKBOMB file (though it would be impossible to know where).”

... and they want these folks to handle our health care ?

Edification

Wired.com: David Petraeus, the incoming CIA director, suggested to Congress that there might be circumstances where a return to “enhanced interrogation” is appropriate. What would you say to him?

Carle: That there is almost no conceivable circumstance in which the enhanced interrogation practices are acceptable or work. This belief is a red herring, wrong, and undoes us a bit. We are better than that. Enhanced interrogation does not work, and is wrong. End of story.,

Danube of Thought

There won't be a primary challenge, and Biden will be the VP candidate.

Foot Bullets

In recent weeks, there’s been some question as to how far Dems are willing to go in making the explosive charge that Republicans are deliberately trying to sabotage the economy in order to improve their chances of defeating President Obama in 2012.

On a conference call just now with reporters, Senator Chuck Schumer made the most aggressive case we’ve heard yet along these lines, leaving little doubt that Dems are locking in behind this message as the deficit talks hit crunch time and as the 2012 campaign looms.

“Do they simply want the economy to go down the drain to further their political gain?” Schumer asked. “They seem to be against anything that may create jobs, because they view a weak economy as key to their political chances in 2012.”

They're right about the plan; wrong about the motive. This isn't about Obama. Most of the deficit was created by George W. Bush -- the tax cuts for the rich, the insane military spending, the bailouts. The trade imbalance and the destruction of American manufacturing were both caused by libertarian policies put into effect long before Mr. O got the oval.

The engineer wants to crash the train. Why? Because he wants to see it crash. The crash is the point; Obama is incidental.

They want to see the economy collapse in a huge spasm of Emmerich-esque Total F***ing Destruction. Financial Ragnarok will bring us to the point that Russia reached after Yeltsin took over. The U.S. will be forced to sell off all of her assets to the oligarchs at ridiculously low prices.

After that comes the formal end of democracy. Obama ain't got nothin' to do with it.

Clarice

Accusing one's political opponents of deliberately sabotaging the economy is an old Soviet trick--wreck the economy and then blame those hapless famers, engineers and managers for what you have done. Weed out and attack the only productive members of society left..
No one is hiring or investing because Dumbo and friends keep adding to the normal uncertainties to such an enormous extent no one can imagine what next month's income or obligations will be.

It's that simple.

Clarice

**faRmers**

boris

I, for one, would welcome our new oligarch overlords if only they send cleo to mars.

Ranger

They want to see the economy collapse in a huge spasm of Emmerich-esque Total F***ing Destruction. Financial Ragnarok will bring us to the point that Russia reached after Yeltsin took over. The U.S. will be forced to sell off all of her assets to the oligarchs at ridiculously low prices.

After that comes the formal end of democracy. Obama ain't got nothin' to do with it.

You know, when all you have left is conspiracy theories, its time to just give up and let the grown-ups run things for a while.

BTW, its funny how Reid and Pelosi, who took over the budgeting process in January of 2007, never get blamed for the out of control spending.

Foot Bullets

"Accusing one's political opponents of deliberately sabotaging the economy is an old Soviet trick--"

And this absolves Republicans of what, Dirty Tricks?


Hmmmmmm...

Danube of Thought

Every living person who has held the position of CIA Director has testified under oath that enhanced interrogation works. All of them have said forcefully that enhanced interrogation contributed materially to finding bin Laden.

The science is settled.

Flat Earth Society

"The science is settled."

Thank you.

boris

mars needs cleo

Stephanie

“A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government.”

— Thomas Jefferson, First Inaugural Address, 1801

Seven Deadlies

How Greed Destroys America
by Robert Parry | June 29, 2011 - 9:12am | permalink
If the "free-market" theories of Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman were correct, the United States of the last three decades should have experienced a golden age in which the lavish rewards flowing to the titans of industry would have transformed the society into a vibrant force for beneficial progress.

After all, it has been faith in "free-market economics" as a kind of secular religion that has driven U.S. government policies - from the emergence of Ronald Reagan through the neo-liberalism of Bill Clinton into the brave new world of House Republican budget chairman Paul Ryan.

By slashing income tax rates to historically low levels - and only slightly boosting them under President Clinton before dropping them again under George W. Bush - the U.S. government essentially incentivized greed or what Ayn Rand liked to call "the virtue of selfishness."

Blackwater is your friend

The solution to every fiscal issue facing government is;
Third-Party out-sourcing.

Whether it's prisons, Social Security or your local police dept, the challenges inherent in running your community efficiently require the cheaper alternative to Community Involvement.

"Xe is currently the largest of the U.S. State Department's three private security contractors. Of the 987 contractors Xe provides, 744 are U.S. citizens.[4][5] At least 90% of the company's revenue comes from government contracts. Xe provided security services in Iraq to the United States federal government, particularly the Central Intelligence Agency[1] on a contractual basis.
The company was purchased on December 17, 2010 by USTC Holding, an investment group. Erik Prince will no longer have an equity stake in or involvement in the management or operation of Xe.[6] In 2011 former NSA head & CIA exec Bobby Ray Inman became the lead of the board of directors.[7]In May 2011, Xe named Ted Wright as CEO.[8] In June, 2011 the company named Suzanne Folsom its chief regulatory and compliance officer and deputy general counsel.[9]"

windansea

Carle: That there is almost no conceivable circumstance in which the enhanced interrogation practices are acceptable or work. This belief is a red herring, wrong, and undoes us a bit. We are better than that. Enhanced interrogation does not work, and is wrong. End of story

every day the Mexican army provides proof to the contrary, cartel plaza capos are arrested and within a couple days their safehouses and sicarios are rolled up, and they use techniques a bit stronger than loud music

think nipples and electricity

matt

doing a little bit of thread jumping, MayBee, I was referring to being surrounded by children from 3-7 years old on three sides.

All were out in force last night while their parents were out to dinner. All were at full throttle. It was both a beautiful and a bemusing moment. Chaos, cacophony. Every one of them yelling in full voice.

Having had our youngest recently move out, we are enjoying our small bit of freedom, and we both love the sound of children most of the time, but not at 6:00am.

In contrast, the mean neighbor, has put their house up for sale because of said cacophony. As mentioned, I have always found duct tape and a wee bit of terrorism to work well when attempting to control the house ape problem. Unfortunately, they have already caught on that I am only teasing.

glasater

think nipples and electricity

Or pouring soda pop down noses ala "Lines and Shadows" by Wambaugh.

hit and run

You might want to sit down for this: Obama mentioned corporate jet owners in his weekly address this morning.

I put the clip in an update to my post linked above.

The clip I took is from this:

Now, it would be nice if we could keep every tax break, but we can’t afford them. Because if we choose to keep those tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires, or for hedge fund managers and corporate jet owners, or for oil and gas companies pulling in huge profits without our help

Win The Future is he talking about "without our help"?!?!?!!?

Clarice

Hit, wearing my Obamatranslator I think the genius in chief means they make this money even without the tax breaks.

Gmax

Zero is going to cave. Probably right after pissing himself.

Schumer thinks they dont need a debt ceiling vote. HMMM so the distance from August 2nd to September 30 is less than 60 days. And then there is no budget of any kind and a pissed off House starts hacking through progressive icons like a weedwhacker. This passes for intelligent strategy in the Democrat Party? Who writes this for them Harpo or Groucho? Cuz even Karl would have been more tactical than that.

Clarice

Actually, he might just bomb London as a distraction, GMax. He read somewhere that war boosts the economy and the president's reelection chances, and the UK seems to him a perfect enemy,

Gmax

Well Honduras is closer, he has kicked them around before, and they are unlikely to be able to punch back which this girly man would definitely want to avoid. Both the UK and Israel would punch back, and there is that small matter of wanting American Jews to fill up the campaign coffers too...

Clarice

Honduras it is then. Short bananas.

Gmax

If you notice Ray Nagin on the WH guest list, look out.

Al Asad

"he might just bomb London as a distraction,"

The metaphor of London serves a nice backdrop to the SOTU and Bush's infamous words, captured on our obelisk the MSM.

I think Holder is a loose cannon who has to be reigned in.

He jumped the gun. More on this in 2013 (post re-election)

Frau Steingehirn

"A wise and frugal government ..."
Thanks, Stephanie. I needed that. What we have is Biden for gravitas.

Minimalist Poster

Biden is pretty heavy.

hit and run

He ain't my brother,neither.

boris

About 10 years ago a lot of people were jumping "the gun".

Sara (Pal2Pal)

I hope everyone has a great 4th of July weekend and holiday. We are forecast for triple digit temps today, tomorrow and Monday, so I will be spending most of my time out back getting my Vitamin D fix after a rainy, dreary Winter and our typical May Grey and June Gloom.

Frau Steingehirn

OT - It's like a hydra: the demand for "card check" is being exerted from all sides. Now the National Mediation Board is putting the squeeze on Delta for having union and nonunion employees:
"On average, nonunion Delta flight attendants take home 12% more than their unionized Northwest counterparts (based on a typical 75-hour-a-month schedule); they enjoy more generous profit-sharing and retirement matches from the company; and they don't have to dole out $43 a month in union dues. (Delta ranked No. 1 among airlines in this year's Fortune Most Admired Companies list)."
LUN

hit and run

Happy Independence Day, Sara...

Update: mrs hit and run,the kids and sister in law are approaching Montgomery,heading for Mobile to spend the night on their way to Texas.

And my $%*&@ chainsaw won't start.

#@%^&*&#$!!!!!

What's the point of being unsupervised if I can't play with my #$&%@% chainsaw?

boris

got cherry bombs?

Frau Steingehirn

Correction - it's the Northwestern airline, owned by Delta, unionized employees.

hit and run

No. Fireworks are dangerous.

I need a spark plug.

Jack is Back!

Golfing and blogging. Is this a great country or what?

Frau Steingehirn

"What's the point of being unsupervised if I can't play with my #$&%@% chainsaw?"

Robert Goulet Sylvia messing with your stuff?

Clarice

Oh no--the combo hit sylvia and chainsaws is more than I can bear to watch.

hit and run

Frau:
Robert Goulet Sylvia messing with your stuff?

I assume it's Clarice. I've no doubt she has a network of operatives capable of pulling this off. She thinks it's for my safety.

I get that. I respect that.

It's for my own good.

Army of Davids

Thomas Donahue, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, on the mandates, new taxes, uncertainties and new regulations put upon business by ObamaCare..."it's a job killer"

hit and run

Aha!

Frau Steingehirn

U.S. Chamber of Commerce = the Roger Dangerfield of organizations.

Gordon Gekko

How Greed Destroys America

The point is, ladies and gentleman, that greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right, greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit. Greed, in all of its forms; greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge has marked the upward surge of mankind.

The Emperor of Wyoming.

Mars is too flat for Leo. Let him have his own private Idaho.
===========

He's a bad one.

h&r @ 12:43

That's a good point, but you misunderstand his poor grasp of English. What he meant to say was that the oil and gas companies would pull in huge profits even without our(government) help. He assumes his audience believes that government subsidizes the energy companies and that they wouldn't make huge profits without that subsidy. Or if he doesn't assume that believe he's trying to instill it. Like push polling.
======

Burn it Down (GOP)

"He assumes his audience believes that government subsidizes the energy companies and that they wouldn't make huge profits without that subsidy"

"Without our help" is a reference to the notion of 'Corporate Welfare' as oxymoronic in it's foundation.

People (the muddle) don't understand there are some corporations that don't need all subsidies, all the time.

It's a difficult concept to absorb because Republicans have made it part-and-parcel of their business-oriented platform. It seems 'normal' now.

Old Lurker

"Oh no--the combo hit sylvia and chainsaws is more than I can bear to watch."

Actually "sylvia" and "chainsaw" are two words I would like to see connected and with a verb of my choosing.

hit and run

but you misunderstand his poor grasp of English

Agreed. I see it now after Clarice applied the Obamatranslator.

Tax cuts. Ugh. Here's Taranto.

The weird vilification of "corporate jet owners" is in the service of promoting tax increases. But tax increases are unpopular, as the Washington Post's Greg Sargent points out by refusing to call them that: "[Obama] was clearly out to pick a major public fight with Republicans over tax cuts for the rich. Obama mounted a surprisingly aggressive moral case for ending high end tax cuts." Maybe the Post should cut Sargent's pay and tell him it's just ending a raise.

"oil and gas companies pulling in huge profits without our help"
--stuff Obama said

"We're from the government and we're to help (you manage those obscene profits,mostly by removing them from you)."
--stuff Obama means

Chubby

in usefulidiotspeak, "greed" is the motive of citizens who want to keep the money that they've earn to spend on themselves whereas "not greed" is turning that money over to support the partying, jetflying and booze inhaling lifestyles of the useful idiots' political masters

Extraneus

He really doesn't seem very smart.

Gmax

Careful Chubby, the reeducation camps are open for business...

Fancy That

It's amazing what one finds expendable when the deficit flood is licking the sandbags at YOPUR house.

NRO

Bill Bennett, Again
July 2, 2011 1:02 P.M.
By Andrew Stuttaford
Here, yet again, is Bill Bennett pushing dubious material, this time at CNN:

My friends at National Review begin their case [against the drug wars] by stating the illegalization of drugs has “curtailed personal freedom, created a violent black market and filled our prisons”…[T]he question is: “Whose freedom?” The drug dealers’, sure — the drug consumers, no. As any parent with a child addicted to drugs will explain, as any visit to a drug rehab center will convey, those caught in the web of addiction are anything but free.
Over at Reason, Jacob Sullum retorts:
Bennett’s reasoning is airtight, as long as you accept his premises that all drug users are addicts, that addiction is slavery, and that adults are children.
Quite.

The war on drugs has weakened liberty, strengthened big government, enriched criminals and damaged America’s security. It has turned what should be a matter for individual adult decision into a national disaster. And it has been doing so for decades. It’s long past time that it came to an end.

hit and run

Chubby:
whereas "not greed" is turning that money over to support the partying, jetflying and booze inhaling lifestyles of the useful idiots' political masters

Indeed. But even those who think that paying taxes is not only patriotic (Mr. Big F'n Deal said so),but salutory should really evaluate the path one's tax dollars take even before being spent in service of some greater good.

My $1 in taxes means how much to a mom on food stamps by the time it gets to her?

Maybe someone has some stats to do that calculation -- but it is literally (Mr. Big F'n Deal would be impressed by that usage) pennies on the dollar.

Waste,Fraud and Abuse is a stupid phrase bums like Obama rail against,like they can fix it through the magic of their master plan to reform the federal government. The fact is the entire system of taking my money and then laudering it through D.C. is the very definition (Mr. Big F'n Deal wants me to use literally again) of Waste,Fraud and Abuse.

Fancy That

YOUR house////

DrJ

OT, but many Lake Tahoe ski resorts are open this weekend. First time they've been able to do so since 1993 -- some still have more than 15 feet of snow.

Must be global warming.

Old Lurker

"pulling in"

Like they are just lying there to be picked up by anyone lucky enough to walk by...after they fell out of the government's wallet of course, or atleast the wallets of poor people.

Grossly Obdurate Plutocrats


SATURDAY, JULY 2, 2011
Mark Ames: Why the American Right Never Liked V.S. Naipaul

I’ve often wondered why the American Right has been so quiet about V.S. Naipaul. He’s easily the most talented reactionary writer in the English language–maybe the only living talent left in the right-wing zombiesphere. The American Right devotes an insane amount of resources into manufacturing hagiographies on anyone whom they believe makes them look good–even the Soviets couldn’t compete with today’s American Right when it comes to glorifying their pantheon of degenerate cretins like Ayn Rand, Phyllis Schlafly, Friedrich von Hayek…

I found a few passages that I think explain why they never liked Naipaul much. Basically, it comes down to this: The American Right only needs “team players”–shameless, cynical hacks who can be counted on to churn out whatever rank propaganda ordered up by the Heritage Foundation. For that, you need a Rotary Club nihilist like Dinesh D’Souza, someone totally devoid of a literary ego, intellectual curiosity or a gag reflex.

I was just reading Patrick French’s brilliant biography of Naipaul, The World Is What It Is, and came across this interesting scene from Naipaul’s visit to America in 1969. Naipaul had already started developing a reputation at that point as one of the rare examples of a dark-skinned reactionary Tory from a Third World colony, making him one of the most despised literary figures among the trendy-left.

His first impressions of America weren’t good: ”They [Americans] are really now a group of immigrants who have picked up English but whose mental disciplines are diluted-European,” he wrote in one letter home.

In another letter, he confessed:

I now dread meeting Americans, especially their alleged intellectuals. Because here the intellect, too, is only a form of display; of all the chatter about problems (very, very remote if you live in an ‘apartment’ in Manhattan: something that appears to be got up by the press) you feel that there is really no concern, that there is only a competition in concern…The level of thought is so low that only extreme positions can be identified: Mary McCarthy, Mailer, Eldridge Cleaver and so on. Ideas have to be simple…The quandary is this. This country is the most powerful in the world; what happens here will affect the restructuring of the world. It is therefore of interest and should be studied. But how can one overcome one’s distaste? Why shouldn’t one just go away and ignore it?”

A good question–I ask myself that just about every morning. The “relevancy” argument he raises is losing its persuasive appeal fast. (The best answer I can come up with is, “To make some of their lives as miserable as they’ve made mine.”)

Anyway, it’s interesting that Naipaul mentions the name of Black Panther Eldridge Cleaver here in 1969–because Cleaver’s name comes up again in an essay Naipaul published in 1984 on the Republican Party Convention in Dallas. This was at the height of the Reagan counter-revolution, when a reactionary like Naipaul should have come to pick up his check, make a few speeches, write a glowing account of America’s turn to Conservatism, and find his books turned into bestsellers via the right-wing mail-order pipeline.

But Naipaul was always too intellectually honest–and too vain. In the essay on the 1984 Republican convention, titled “Among the Republicans,” Naipaul describes the degradation of Eldridge Cleaver, the Black Panther whom he once lumped in with all the “simple” American intellectuals he had contempt for. It’s the first morning of the Convention, and Naipaul sees this announcement in his Dallas Sheraton hotel:

11:00 AM. Press conference, Richard Viguerie and Howard Phillips, Populist Conservative Tax Coalition. Subject: “Are Liberals Soft on Communism?” Guest speaker: Eldridge Cleaver, former Black Panther.

Eldridge Cleaver! One of the famous names of the late 1960s: the self-confessed rapist of white women, the man who had spent years in jail, the Black Muslim, the author of Soul on Ice (1968), not really a book, more an assemblage of jottings, but a work of extraordinary violence, answering the mood of that time. In 1969, when for a few weeks I had been in the United States, I had heard it said of Cleaver that he was going to die one day in a shoot-out with the FBI. That hadn’t happened. Cleaver had found asylum in Algeria and then in France; he had become homesick there and had returned, a born-again Christian, to the United States.

In Paris earlier this year I had met a man who had made an important film about Cleaver during the revolutionary days of the late 1960s. The film man now regarded that time, which had its glory, as a time of delusion. And now Cleaver himself was part of a side-show—or so I thought of it—at the Republican convention.

It seemed a big comedown. And it was even sadder, when I got to the conference room, to find that there was no crowd; that Cleaver was not the most important person there, that he was sitting on the far right of the second row, that some people didn’t seem to know who he was; that the few journalists asking questions were more interested in the other people of the Populist Conservative Tax Coalition.

So ordinary now, so safe, this black man for whom a revolutionary’s desperate death had been prophesied. I had known him only from his younger photographs. He was now forty-nine and almost bald; what hair he had was gray. There was something Chinese, placid, about his eyes and cheekbones; he looked very patient. His eyebrows were thin, like penciled arcs, and his hooded eyes were quiet.

Seeing Cleaver paraded around like a defeated, conquered aborigine struck Naipaul hard, opening up deep raw wounds: that of a colonized, backwater, dark-skinned twerp whose only way out of Trinidad was through Tory England, his conquerors.

Although a reactionary, Naipaul was never a lackey like today’s right-wing “intellectuals”; he never shied away from describing about the brutality of colonialism (unlike bootlicking scum like Dinesh D’Souza, who never missed an opportunity to glorify his white right-wing masters for colonizing India, despite the tens of millions of Indians who died of famine in the Raj).

Naipaul continues:

And at last Cleaver stood up. He was tall beside the CIA man. He was paunchy now, even a little soft-bellied. His blue shirt had a white collar and his dark red tie hung down long. The touch of style was reassuring.

Somebody asked about his political ambitions. He said he wanted to get on the Berkeley city council. And then, inevitably, someone asked about his attitude to welfare. His reply was tired; he gave the impression of having spoken the words many times before. “I’m passionately opposed to the welfare system because it’s made people a parasitic dependency on the federal system…. I want to see black people plugged into the economic system…. Welfare is a stepping-stone to socialism because it teaches people the government is going to solve our problems.”

That was more or less it. It seemed to be all that was required of “Eldridge,” that statement about socialism and welfare. And soon the session was declared closed. A repeat began to be prepared. As in a fair, shows were done over and over again, and in between business was drummed up.

Naipaul is so affected by the sight of this conquered, lobotomized-Republican Eldridge Cleaver that he goes back again to Cleaver’s Black Panther days and finds himself not just empathizing but actually appreciating Cleaver’s literary and intellectual talents, something Naipaul couldn’t see back in the 60′s:

…Away from the dark corner, Cleaver, placid, gray-haired, leaned against a wall. Two or three journalists went to him. But the very simplicity of the man on display made the journalists ask only the obvious questions, questions that had already been asked.

There was a many-layered personality there. But that personality couldn’t be unraveled now, with simple questions in a formal public gathering. To find that man, it was necessary to go to his book, the book of 1968, Soul on Ice. And there—in a book more moving and richer than I had remembered—that many-layered man was: with his abiding feeling for religion and his concern with salvation (as a Roman Catholic, then as a Black Muslim, then as a revolutionary); his need for community constantly leading him to simple solutions; his awareness of his changing self; his political shrewdness:

And here Naipaul quotes an amazing passage from Cleaver’s Soul On Ice:

I was very familiar with the Eldridge who came to prison, but that Eldridge no longer exists. And the one I am now is in some ways a stranger to me. You may find this difficult to understand but it is very easy for one in prison to lose his sense of self. And if he has been undergoing all kinds of extreme, involved, and unregulated changes, then he ends up not knowing who he is….

In this land of dichotomies and disunited opposites, those truly concerned with the resurrection of black Americans have had eternally to deal with black intellectuals who have become their own opposites….

In a sense, both the new left and the new right are the spawn of the Negro revolution. A broad national consensus was developed over the civil rights struggle, and it had the sophistication and morality to repudiate the right wing. This consensus, which stands between a violent nation and chaos, is America’s most precious possession. But there are those who despise it.

The task which the new right has feverishly undertaken is to erode and break up this consensus, something that is a distinct possibility since the precise issues and conditions which gave birth to the consensus no longer exist.

That was Eldridge Cleaver in the late 1960s’s, describing exactly what would happen over the next two decades.

Now that Naipaul could compare the two Eldridge Cleavers–the Black Panther vs. the Republican lackey–the message was clear. If Naipaul wanted to pick up that check from the American Right-Wing, it wasn’t enough to have fought on the front-lines of the ideological battle of the 1970′s against the literary Marxists. He’d have to become a lobotomized, conquered version of himself, an Eldridge Cleaver. He’d have to give up everything interesting about himself.

Instead, Naipaul essentially banished himself to the whispered margins of the American Right by doing what he was always best at: Describing exactly what he saw at the 1984 Convention, without artifice, without pandering. Here is Naipaul describing the effect of the climactic speech by Ronald Reagan:

So that at the climax of the great occasion, as at the center of so many of the speeches, there was nothing. It was as if, in summation, the sentimentality, about religion and Americanism, had betrayed only an intellectual vacancy; as if the computer language of the convention had revealed the imaginative poverty of these political lives. It was “as if”—in spite of the invocations and benedictions (the last benediction to be spoken by Dr. Criswell)—”as if inspiration had ceased, as if no vast hope, no religion, no song of joy, no wisdom, no analogy, existed any more.”

The words are by Emerson; they were written about England. English Traits, published in 1856, was about Emerson’s two visits to England, in 1833 and 1847, when he felt that English power, awesome and supreme as it still was, was on the turn, and that English intellectual life was being choked by the great consciousness of power and money and rightness. “They exert every variety of talent on a lower ground.” Emerson wrote, “and may be said to live and act in a submind.” Something like this I felt in the glitter of Dallas. Power was the theme of the convention, and this power seemed too easy—national power, personal power, the power of the New Right. Like Emerson in England, I seemed in the convention hall of Dallas “to walk on a marble floor, where nothing will grow.”

All of the young reactionary intellectuals I knew when I was younger eventually came around to a similar epiphany. At some point, it just couldn’t be ignored: These people were scum; mean, sleazy, boring scum. It became impossible to be near them. They–we–dropped out of the Right, and wanted nothing more to do with it all. But by ruining everything in this country–economically, culturally, intellectually, militarily–the Right essentially chased us wherever we went, poisoning everything they could get their hands on. Until finally there was nowhere to go but Leftward. A hardened, mean Left.

Either get the Republican lobotomy (just look at poor P.J. O’Rourke), or go Left: those are the only choices in this country today.

Naipaul’s career developed at a time when Western reactionary intellectuals could still be formidable, dynamic and unpredictable; there was space carved out on the Right for reactionary talent like Naipaul. They had to struggle for publishing success at a time when the printed word was dominated by left-wing/Marxist philistines. Those Left-wing intellectuals no longer exist today, except as phantom boogeymen in the heroic fantasies of the Right. What’s worse, the American Right has no need of unpredictable talent like V.S. Naipaul, so they’ve driven his species into extinction as well, poisoning the intellectual eco-system forever, making it impossible for a new Naipaul to threaten them again. They’ve replaced the Naipauls with libertarians, the fake, predictable, genetically-modified version of reactionary intellectualism–so insanely corrupt and so profoundly retarded that, like a skunk spraying foul stupidity whenever threatened, libertarianism has successfully scared away anyone with brains and dignity from bothering them while they feed.

Naipaul always despised facile thinking. It was because Naipaul was so committed to merciless observation that he allied himself with reactionary intellectuals of the pre-Reagan, pre-Thatcher era–it was the Left that wore the rose-tinted glasses back then. What Naipaul didn’t realize was how much worse, how much more intellectually stifling America’s right-wing intelligentsia would turn out to be once in power. And sentimental to the point of disgusting–that’s the other thing that comes through Naipaul’s essay on the 1984 Republican Convention: the cheap, contemptible sentimentality of the American Right, the very opposite of rigor.

What’s left today, three decades after Reagan’s victory, is a ruling class of Rotary Club nihilists. Right-wing degenerates. And they’re not even interesting degenerates anymore, the way some Right-wingers used to be. They just scream a lot. Scream and bang a stick on the ground–and at the end of the stick-banging, they go to pick up their checks from their billionaire sponsors.

All of which brings me back to Naipaul’s original question: How can one overcome one’s distaste? Why shouldn’t one just go away and ignore it?

Chubby

H&R

I think some voters are so far gone that as long as they get theirs, they don't give a whit about government waste. And I'm sure that the masters have mountains of spreadsheets that calculate down to the last fraction of a penny exactly how much of the booty has to be distributed to buy voter ignorance, willful blindness and apathy.

Clear Messages

Minnesotans frustrated, angry over state government shutdown

Todd Melby
Reuters US Online Report Top News

Jul 02, 2011 15:19 EDT

MINNEAPOLIS (Reuters) - Tara and Jose Garcia wanted to spend the holiday weekend camping with their four children.


But a Minnesota government shutdown prevented them from pitching a tent at a state park. So they checked out county campgrounds, only to find those parks overflowing with people.

"It's bulls--t," said Tara Garcia of Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota. "I am just feeling, 'Are you kidding? C'mon!'"

So the Garcias parked their minivan at Ft. Snelling, a state historical site nestled on the edge of the Mississippi River, just outside Minneapolis. That too was closed. They wandered the desolate paths anyway, with nerf guns in hand and a gaggle of kids, all under age 8.

After Democratic Governor Mark Dayton and Republican legislative leaders failed to reach agreement on a $5 billion budget deficit Thursday, state offices, parks, highway rest areas and a state zoo were shuttered. In addition, 22,000 government workers were hit with layoff notices.

When negotiations broke down, the two sides were about $1.4 billion apart with Democrats insisting on a tax increase for the rich and Republicans strongly opposed. The partisan impasse angered many people.

"You have a job to do, figure out how to do your job," said Laura Sandquist, 27, of Bloomington, Minnesota, who was at Ft. Snelling with her husband. The pair were not there to visit, but to unload their bikes and go for a ride along the river.

Jeff Sandquist, also 27, did not think the shutdown would actually happen. "It's mean," he said. "I'm sure they are both to blame."

At nearby Minneapolis park, Jeff Freidson, 63, of New Hope, Minnesota, was relaxing at picnic table with his family. As a bus driver for a private company with a government contract, he worries the shutdown may threaten his livelihood.

"If this goes on long-term, I'll lose my job," Freidson said.

Freidson's wife was laid off from a teaching job more than two years ago. His job is their only source of income and health care insurance. "Times are tough," he said. "We really cannot cut back much more than we have already."

Landing another job seems unlikely, he said, because employers would rather hire young workers than someone nearing retirement.

Mussette Wade, 37, hoped to buy Minnesota Lottery tickets at a Minneapolis gas station. But the state shutdown prevented her from doing that. "I usually buy scratch-offs once a week when I get paid," she said. "It's just something I leisurely do."

Wade was more upset by a bigger shutdown inconvenience: She was not able to visit a friend who is incarcerated in a Minnesota prison. Staff cutbacks at correctional facilities have ended visitation rights for inmates.

Wade had driven to Indiana to pickup the inmate's parents for the visit. "My friend was really looking forward to seeing his Dad and Mom," she said. "It's sad. It's really sad."

Danube of Thought

In the world I lived in as a small boy, Cyrus Vance Jr. would have resigned by now.

hit and run

Chubby:
I'm sure that the masters have mountains of spreadsheets that calculate down to the last fraction of a penny exactly how much of the booty has to be distributed to buy voter ignorance

Ugh. I don't want to think about that. I need to creatively destruct something. Boy,a functioning chainsaw sure would come in handy right about now. Maybe I'll start burning things afterall.

FOCUS ON THE UN

Middle East Quartet discourages more flotillas

Megan Davies
Reuters US Online Report World News

Jul 02, 2011 14:52 EDT

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The Quartet of Middle East peace negotiators on Saturday said it is concerned about "unsustainable conditions" facing people in Gaza but said additional flotillas should be discouraged.


For the second year in a row, international activists have been assembling in the Mediterranean on an assortment of boats, planning to challenge Israel's sea blockade of the Gaza Strip.

Israel says its blockade of Gaza is aimed at stopping weapons from reaching the enclave's rulers, Hamas -- an Islamist group branded a terrorist organization by the West.

Palestinians and their supporters say the naval blockade is illegal and constitutes collective punishment for Gaza's 1.5 million residents.

The Quartet -- the United States, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations -- said in a statement it "remains concerned about the unsustainable conditions facing the civilian population in Gaza but notes that efforts have improved conditions over the last year."

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has previously represented the UN at Quartet meetings.

The Quartet, represented by former British prime minister Tony Blair, aims to promote an end to the Israel-Palestine conflict and bring stability to the Middle East, according to its web site.

It said there had been a marked increase in the range and scope of goods and materials moving into Gaza. However, it said "considerably more needs to be done to increase the flow of people and goods to and from Gaza, including a liberalization of the market in aggregate, steel bar and cement."

The Quartet's statement said it recognizes that Israel "has legitimate security concerns that must continue to be safeguarded" and it was committed to working with Israel, Egypt and the international community to prevent the illicit trafficking of arms and ammunition into Gaza.

It urged those wishing to deliver goods to the people of Gaza to do so through "established channels so that their cargo can be inspected and transferred via established land crossings."

'POTENTIAL FOR ESCALATION'

The Quartet said it "regrets the injury and deaths caused by the 2010 flotilla" and "urges restraint and calls on all governments concerned to use their influence to discourage additional flotillas, which risk the safety of their participants and carry the potential for escalation."

In May of last year, Israeli marines intercepted a six-ship flotilla in international waters and killed eight Turks and a Turkish-American aboard one vessel, the Mavi Marmara, owned by a Turkish Islamic charity.

Israel said its marines were attacked by activists wielding metal bars, clubs and knives, but organizers of the convoy denied that. The incident led to a breakdown in already strained ties between Turkey and Israel.

Last August, U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon appointed a panel led by former New Zealand Prime Minister Geoffrey Palmer to look into the incident. The much-delayed U.N. panel is due to report back in July, Ban Ki-moon said last month.

The Quartet also called in Saturday's statement for an end to the "deplorable five-year detention of Gilad Shalit".

Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit was grabbed by militants who tunneled into an Israeli army border position on June 25, 2006 and took him into the Gaza Strip.

Shalit, who holds dual Israeli and French citizenship, was 19 at the time his capture. The last sign of life received from the soldier was a videotape released by his captors in September 2009 showing Shalit pleading for his life.

The Quartet are scheduled to meet on July 11, a senior U.N. diplomat said on Friday. The meeting, expected to take place in Washington, will come amid a U.S. push to revive peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

A round of secret meetings with U.S. envoys aimed at getting the two parties back around the table has not yet achieved any breakthrough and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas recently reaffirmed that he planned to win Palestinians U.N. recognition this coming September.

Abbas is pushing to secure United Nations recognition of Palestinian statehood.

boy scout

How do you prepare?

Cash-Check
junk silver-check
Food and Water stores-check
Ammo-check


Germany preparing for unlikely Greek default: Schaeuble

REUTERS
Reuters US Online Report Top News

Jul 02, 2011 13:13 EDT

BERLIN (Reuters) - The German government has been making preparations for the unlikely event that Greece defaults even though it does not expect such an event, Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said in an interview in Der Spiegel.


Reiterating comments made last week, Schaeuble also told Der Spiegel news magazine that the government would take steps to ensure that any contagion in the financial system in such an event would be quickly contained.

"As a responsible government we're making provisions for the unlikely event -- and something that would be in contrast to all expectations -- that Greece defaults," Schaeuble told the news magazine, due to be published on Sunday.

"We would then make sure that it doesn't lead to an uncontrolled development," he added. Schaeuble said that if Greece were to become insolvent, it could lead to "awesome repercussions" for banks, the economy and possibly the entire financial system as a whole.

Schaeuble also defended an agreement with Germany's top financial institutions to contribute 3.2 billion euros to a fresh Greek rescue. On Thursday, Schaeuble said the banks and insurers involved in the deal had agreed to roll over at least their Greek debt holdings that mature by 2014.

"Naturally that's a success," he told Der Spiegel. "A few months ago no one seriously believed that we would get any sort of private involvement at all."

Schaeuble admitted that he had to make concessions to the German financial institutions.

"The German banks and insurance companies made it very clear to me that it could not happen that their participation would leave them at a competitive disadvantage to their European counter-parts," he said.

Euro zone finance ministers are expected to approve the next tranche of emergency aid for Greece on Saturday and take decisions on a second three-year financing plan for Athens on July 11, euro zone officials have said.

The release of the 12 billion euro ($17 billion) tranche from the euro zone and the International Monetary Fund was made possible after Greece passed new austerity and reform laws this week, removing the threat of a near-term default.

Finance ministers from the 17 countries using the euro and the President of the European Central Bank Jean-Claude Trichet are likely to discuss in a conference call on Saturday how much of the 80-90 billion euros could come from the private sector.

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Wilson/Plame