Monday, September 29, 2008

Craven puppies 
I can't wait to find out who those 12 or so Republican scrote-lickers were who switched their votes solely on the basis of Pelosi's speech...scuttling the bill.

A principled vote or a vote on a good-faith but stupid analysis is one thing. But to commit to voting one way on the merits and then letting Madame Pelosi lead them around by their penises with one measly little speech is quite another.

Those spineless, craven, nutless wonders need their walking papers pronto.

Splash, out


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D.C. To The U.S. Economy: Drop Dead 
Congress just fucked up. Big time.

No surprise, though. Congress could fuck up a wet dream.

Here's what's happening: Your average Congressman is a backslapping idiot. You don't make it to Congress understanding the machinations of the world of finance and credit. You make it to Congress by reading the will of the people and surfing that wave. The "bailout" package is unpopular with Americans because few Americans understand where a dollar comes from.

Phone lines have been lighting up with popular opposition to a Wall Street bailout from conservative and liberal populists alike. None of these yokels understand that even in good times, a dollar in deposits is perched precariously on an upside-down pyramid point of four to six cents in actual liquidable assets.

Fewer still understand that the reason their employer didn't send them home today is because the company they work at, or the city or state office they work at, is able to make their payroll because they are able to float commercial and high-grade short-term paper on the money markets for a 1-day to 90-day loan. That is why they have spending money now, and why they had it last week. Americans take it for granted that that is going to be the case next week. (If your employer doesn't borrow in the money markets, you can be assured that your customers do, or the employers of your customers do, somewhere upstream from you!)

Few Congressmen understand that there is no law of nature that says that Microsoft and the City of Fontana, California and the Broward County School District have a God-given right to a buyer who will front them the money to make their payroll until the next big check comes in. There is no hard-written rule that those with capital will choose to lend it out at a pittance just for the convenience of city mayors and struggling companies around the country. But last week, the money markets that support these crucial operating loans and keep Americans employed began to creak under the strain. Capital is draining out of the system, fleeing to Treasuries on the secondary markets at ridiculously low yields, rather than to working Americans in the form of short-term credit so employers can make their payroll.

Americans have no idea where their paycheck comes from and why it comes. All they know is they don't want to bail out rich Wall Street fat cats.

They are wrong.

First of all, the real fat cats will be fine, regardless. They don't need a bailout. They will muddle through. The people who REALLY get hurt by economic dislocations are not fat cats, and they NEVER are. The people who get hurt by economic dislocations and credit crunches are workers. Blue collar factory and construction workers. And their families.

These people rely on the credit markets for their paychecks. They rely on the credit markets for their cars, and even their household appliances. This isn't optimal. This is just the way shit works. They live paycheck to paycheck, and rely on credit to stitch paychecks across the seams of months.

If there is a severe contraction as a result of Congress's stupidity, it is going to be these people who pay the price first.

Next are entrepreneurs. Small business owners who rely on their American Express Business Card and a line of credit to keep the lights on while they work their accounts receivables to pay off last month. Many small businesses are highly leveraged -- especially in the start-up phase. Without liquidity in the financial markets - without easily locateable financial institutions willing to lend, this isn't the difference between eating steak and hamburger. For many businesses, this is the end of the business.

Most people on main street barely know how to balance a checkbook. Financial literacy in the population at large is terrible.

Naturally, Congress was listening to the more financially illiterate among us over the weekend. Rebublicans especially.


I hope I've got good street cred among most of my conservative readers. I'm a conservative. Almost libertarian (though I'm personally not comfortable with abortion, and dislike the isolationist kook fringe of the libertarian party as well as the Ron Paul morons). Look, I grok the small government idea. I'm down with the right on that.

But the time to be sticking to those principles was a decade ago. Small government studs should have deflated Fannie and Freddie 10 years ago, when we could have done so without causing a major dislocation. If we were serious about small government, as conservatives, we should have been manning the barricades when regulators pushed banks into making more questionable loans. There were a few voices in the wilderness. But the Denny Hastert Congress went along to get along.

The time for small government idealism is in preventing the need for a large bailout package. But having winked and nodded at the "implicit" (?!?!?!?!) backing of Fannie and Freddie for a generation, even as warning signs piled up, now we find ourselves in the position where the U.S. Treasury is the ONLY player left in the marketplace who can function as a marketmaker for very foundational assets.... assets which actually have an intrinsic value, unlike those stupid internet stocks in the last bubble... and these Republican retards who all wax rhapsodic about the benefits of a free and fluid market at all other times, decide to throw a crowbar in the spokes out of a mistimed adherence to a free market principle which they don't really understand. Not like they should.

Few people understand what is going on. The people who simultaneously possess the theoretical intellectual framework to grasp what is going on AND have real-time access to information were pounding the table for this to go through, and go through fast.

The Secretary of the Treasury, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve, and the President were warning of the need for quick, decisive action. The Speaker of the House was (mostly) on board, as was Charles "gulp" Schumer. How often does that happen?

The leadership that got the "no shit" briefing from Bernanke and Treasury were on board. Barney Frank were on board with the President. I wish I were at that briefing. And maybe it's time that briefing were made public. Because the leadership utterly failed to sell the idea to the backbenchers.

Time is of the essence. Credit windows are snapping shut already. If Congress does not act, then they will shortly be providing massive supplemental funding to shore up FDIC. Only this time there will be no underlying assets the government can take over in exchange for the payments to depositors.

Buying mortgages at fire sale prices, given the liquidity (which we have, as taxpayers) is smart. Throwing money down the FDIC well when the banks don't HAVE to fail is folly.

Sure, the bill was cobbled together quickly. It's going to be ugly. It's going to have some rough edges. The perfect, though, is the mortal enemy of the good enough. Or as Megan McArdle puts it: anyone who tanks a bank bailout they think might be needed, in order to get a cut in the capital gains tax, deserves to be tried for treason.

And to blame that stupid Pelosi speech for Republican intransigence? Asinine.

And now the baying hyenas on the Democrat side of the aisle will craft a bill that will include every stupid libtard giveaway in the book, and pass it over a bunch of Republican dead bodies in a party line vote, and DARE Bush to veto it.

But unlike the dumbass Republican congressmen, Bush knows what's at stake, and he can't. He'll make a deal with the devil, made possible by the dumbest Republicans in history.

To hell with you, Congressional Republicans. I'll vote for McCain. But if you're that stupid, you're not worthy of his coat-tails. If you haven't already blown his chances with your obtuseness.

Splash, out


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Friday, September 26, 2008

More on the debate 
Obama: "Our troops have performed brilliantly."

Well, when we're not air-raiding villages and killing civilians, that is.

"I've got a bracelet, too." ROFL!!!! What a tool.

"No soldier ever dies in vain."

Huh? WTF kind of logic is that? Obama has no clue.


McCain draws blood 
"I'm afraid Senator Obama doesn't know the difference between a tactic and a strategy."

Ooh. That's going to leave a mark.

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Andrew Sullivan's Vagina-Sniffing Continues 
Heh heh heh. "Query." Heh heh heh. Nice one, Mistuh Kurtz.

If I were the owners of The Atlantic, I'd be telling Sully to find a new home about now.

Splash, out


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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Oh Please Oh Please Oh Please Oh Please! 
Oh PLEASE put Michael Dukakis back in the public eye again!

Good old Willie Horton - the poster boy for the effectiveness of libtard crime policies.

Democrats: "We put previously convicted sadistic murderers currently serving life sentences back out on the STREET where they BELONG!"

Splash, out


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Hitch: Why is Obama So Vapid, Hesitant and Gutless? 
Answer: Because he's a liberal.

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Biden on the McCain Computer Ad 
This isn't the Obama I know.

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So who was ever charged for a rape kit? 
CNN writes a big, long story about how Wasilla charged rape victims for rape kits... which is all true, except for the part about Wasilla actually charging victims for rape kits.

Not one person.

But read through the story. You can just taste how desperately, DESPERATELY the reporter wants to find something there. But the piece is nothing but a smear job. It's an abuse of journalistic practice, with every salacious detail designed to titillate prominently featured, while every piece of exculpatory evidence in support of Gov. Palin tucked neatly at the very end of the piece.

Neat trick.

And the leftard vagina-sniffing continues.

Splash, out


UPDATE: See the minutes from the relevant meetings.

Ok, CNN...find me a police agency in Alaska who ever actually billed a victim, directly, as a matter of policy. Do you have the goods? Have you done your job? Name names.

P.S., If there's anything wrong with a municipality passing rape kit charges along to a victim's insurance company, I haven't found it. I'm assuming that when the Wasilla official talks of passing charges on to the insurance company, the deductible has already been paid. But aren't insurance companies in the business of taking on risks like this? They'd get the bill if the victim were injured wouldn't they? They'd get the bill for an MRI. Why should a rape kit be treated any differently?

I guess because it's a law enforcement expense. But it could just as easily be construed to be a medical expense, too, since samples could be examined for HIV and other communicable diseases.

UPDATE: Much more from Confederate Yankee

Bottom line: Wasilla's police chief has no record of any victim ever having been billed for a rape kit. The city's finance director likewise has no record of any victim ever having been billed for a rape kit.

So where is the reporter's information coming from? Did they check it out? Did they check ANYTHING out?

Just terrible.

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Monday, September 22, 2008

My Pet Jawa Exposes Large Dem PR Firm In Slanderous Astroturfing 
Rusty Shackleford has the goods.

Too much to excerpt...just keep reading.

This is textbook black hat PR stuff...and it's exactly the kind of crap that gives public relations professionals a bad name.

For comparison purposes, here is the Public Relations Society of America's Code of Ethics


Examples of Improper Conduct Under This Provision:

A member employed by a “client organization” shares helpful information with a counseling firm that is competing with others for the organization’s business.

A member spreads malicious and unfounded rumors about a competitor in order to alienate the competitor’s clients and employees in a ploy to recruit people and business.

Think the PRSA will expel these goons? Not a chance.

It's looking like this video was DEAD ON!

Splash, out


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Sunday, September 21, 2008

Teach your children 
"Children, if your parents haven't been teaching you what it means to be an American, let 'em know -- and nail 'em on it. That would be a very American thing to do."

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A Look at a Taliban Victory 
IMPORTANT UPDATE: Read this from Michael Yon, who says the French military and NATO are lying about the contents of this after action report.

The Globe and Mail looks at an ambush in which a platoon of French soldiers got chewed up and spit out by Taliban fighters last month.

A NATO report on the incident obtained by The Globe and Mail provides the most in-depth account so far of an attack on Aug. 18 that shook the countries involved in the increasingly bloody campaign. The NATO report, marked “secret,” reveals woefully unprepared French troops surprised by well-armed insurgents in a valley east of Kabul. Ten soldiers were killed, the report concludes, but the other soldiers were lucky to escape without more deaths.

The French did not have enough bullets, radios and other equipment, the report said. The troops were forced to abandon a counterattack when the weapons on their vehicles ran out of ammunition only 90 minutes into a battle that stretched over two days. One French platoon had only a single radio and it was quickly disabled, leaving them unable to call for help. Chillingly, in an indication that the French troopers may have been at the mercy of their attackers, the dead soldiers from that platoon “showed signs of being killed at close range,” the report said.

By contrast, the insurgents were dangerously well prepared. The investigation found evidence of well-trained snipers among the guerrillas – highly unusual, because the Taliban are frequently mocked for their poor marksmanship – and indications they were supplied with incendiary bullets designed to punch holes in armour

See the play-by-play of the maneuver scheme here.

The presence of skilled snipers in Afghanistan is perhaps a significant development. (I can't gauge what the distances are, but their aimed fire was accurate enough to prevent immediate reinforcement of the cut-off element, which goes to show you how effective trained snipers can be. The sniper may not have been the killing force. But he made the killing force more effective by making it impossible for the French to maneuver.

I think you have to consider the probability that there are sniper schools in neighboring Pakistan, but I also wouldn't discount the possibility that some of the snipers from Iraq in 2005-2006 have gone underground and are resurfacing in Afghanistan.
I'm sure that Al Qaeda has done its best, when its defeat in Iraq became imminent and obvious, to pull resources out and redeploy them elsewhere.

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Saturday, September 20, 2008

Army Photoshop Scandal? 
Columbia Journalism Review reports that the Asinine Press killed two photographs of soldiers after they were alerted that they may have been photoshop jobs.

The CJR, natch, can't be bothered to run them side by side. But the folks at Think Progress do, to their credit. Naturally, the leftards take three yards and a cloud of dust and imagine a 89-yard pass to the end zone.

One of their commenters gets it, though: The photos in question are official portraits. They are typically taken in photo studios by professional photographers...usually civilians. And yes, just like in Sears portrait studios, the use of photoshop is common. Specifically, it's very common practice for a photographer to use photoshop to digitally alter an official DA photo to ensure the right medals are portrayed, and to correct minor uniform blemishes. Someone working in a photo lab, asked to create a DA photo for a soldier who does not have one on file, for example, would probably think nothing of working one up.

Why might someone not have a DA photo? Well, many reserve component soldiers don't live near a DA photo lab, or can't take time off work to have a photo taken. Or the soldier may have been promoted overseas, since the last time the photo was taken. If there is a need for a home town press release, as there was in this case when the soldiers died, then it seems natural to me that in the absence of an official DA photo, one would be created - out of respect for the soldier.

The fact that these libtards can extrapolate from this story to Jessica Lynch to all manner of conspiracy theories and corruption says far more about their fever-swamp state of mind than it does about the Army.

The Army did this so the soldier can have a portrait to run in the newspaper, or for the family to display at the funeral.

That's all.

Chill, people.

Splash, out,


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Friday, September 19, 2008

Estate Tax fallout 
One bit of fallout from the recent rash of federal outlays: I think we can kiss goodbye any hopes that the estate tax exemption is going to remain at $2 million. That sucker is back down to $500,000 if Obama wins, before you can say "Patriotic."

And if McCain wins, that's going to be the first bone he throws to a likely Dem congress in order to get even a smidgeon of his agenda passed. Either way, I think it's very unlikely you can bank on a continued $2 million estate tax exemption.

So what does this mean?

Well, like the AMT, it's going to have a disproportionate effect on the blue states...property values in red states (Florida and Arizona excepted) did not inflate as much as properties along the coasts. So to an extent, it's a poison pill for the Dems. But a lot more people are going to need to look long and hard at how their assets are going to be passed on to the next generation.

Incidentally, the increased estate tax burden is going to fall disproportionately on another Democrat constituency: same-sex couples. Why? Because married couples enjoy an unlimited estate tax exemption to the surving spouse. Unless a same-sex couple is legally married, though, even a will is not going to help. Andy Sullivan's long-time companion can pass away (BECAUSE HE WANTS TO!!!!) and even if they own a house jointly that puts them over the 500k exemption, Sully's going to have to find some way to raise enough cash to cover an amount equal to up to 47% of the estate's value over and above the $500k exemption.

It's going to be great for insurance salespeople, of course, since the time-honored way to pay for the estate tax without having to liquidate assets (like a home) is to take out a life insurance policy sufficient to cover the estate tax. The number of people with a new life insurance need is far, FAR higher with an estate tax exemption of $500,000 than it is with an exemption of $2,000,000. Further, I would posit that at the lower exemption amount, the chief asset that will need to be sold to make the exemption is going to be the family home. This is a much bigger deal at a 500k exemption than at the 2 million level, because in many cases, a much larger chunk of the exemption is likely to be the one asset that is most difficult and painful to liquidate in time to pay the estate tax: the home.

Look for a jump in life insurance sales (to cover the increased estate tax liability), annuities (to get money OUT of the estate and convert it to income), and reverse mortgages (to get the house out of the estate).

Now, this is going to be a painful effect for the upper middle class, because they will be forced to weigh the desire to keep a home in the family against the need for retirement income - and they've undersaved to begin with.

I wouldn't rely on pensions for a lot of them. And, quite frankly, unless they've done a terrific job planning ahead, the life insurance premiums it is going to take to cover, say, $300,000 to $1.5 million in increased estate tax liability is not going to be affordable for people in their 50s and 60s, let's say, whose chief asset is in their home, which is not readily convertible to cash to pay a premium.

And this is not even including the cost of providing for their own long-term or nursing home care.

The libtards think they can "soak the rich" by lowering that estate tax exemption back down to $500,000 from $2 million.

I'm here to tell you... they have a funny idea of what "rich" means. The more I learn about family finances, the more I see that this is a pretty ugly development for an awful lot of families.

Splash, out


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Social Security Privatization 
Watch out for libtard attempts to hang McCain's support for a private account option for Social Security around his neck like an albatross. Actually, they're already doing it...and the financial illiterates in the media are buying into it.

But verily I say unto you: the lower equity prices go, the more sense it makes to allow workers to route their earnings toward private accounts.

It's the paradox of public stupidity: People make decisions by looking in the rear view mirror. The more attractive equities become, and the lower P/E ratios become and the higher dividends become, the more difficult it will be to sell the public on private accounts. The unwashed masses only want to invest in equities at the worst times, AFTER stocks have been soaring. And they want to get out of stocks only AFTER the market lurches downwards.

But remember folks, we are looking at dollar cost averaging contributions over a period of decades. Equity prices at any given time is simply statistical noise. Look, the market ended UP this week, anyway!

What's really important is what kind of earnings can you get per dollar, and how stable and reliable that stream of earnings becomes. There is nothing else that can support a reliable pension, in the long run...and that is equally true, regardless of whether short-term price volatility has ZERO EFFECT on the long-term earnings of any given security. The only thing price volatility can do is affect your expected return, which is a function of expected earnings and current price. Further, the longer the time horizon, the smaller the effect of the current price.

Now look at things the other way round: As people flee to safety and drive down yields on bonds...especially treasury securities, that will ALSO have the neccessary effect of depressing the internal rate of return of Social Security contributions.

So the market events of the last couple of weeks are actually an argument FOR some form of privatization, not an argument against it. The worse things look, and the further down investors drive treasury yields as they run screaming to safety, the lower the expected returns on the bonds held in the Social Security Administration portfolio. Should the rate of inflation outstrip the yield, and we have negative real returns on Social Security, the difference will have to be made up out of the general fund, anyway. We are still beholden to make up COLA adjustments. If Social Security is limited to a bond portfolio, AND we remain in an extremely low interest rate environment, it gets very ugly very fast for the Social Security Portfolio.

Splash, out


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An overview of the American POW experience in Viet Nam 

Air Force Capt. John A. Dramesi, who was captured April 2, 1967, was determined to escape despite the odds. The pugnacious former star high school wrestler and son of a boxer had already tried to escape en route to Hanoi. For months, he and fellow conspirators squirreled away string, wire, and bamboo that could be used for tools or weapons. Donated scraps of food were hidden in a cache. They gathered straw, thread, and cloth to weave civilian attire. Conical peasant hats were fabricated from rice straw taken from sleeping mats. Dramesi acquired brown iodine pills for water purification and to help darken the skin color of those attempting to escape. On May 10, 1969, Dramesi and Air Force Capt. Edwin L. Atterberry advised the leadership, "We're going tonight."

Horror Chamber

They did. Dramesi calculated that, by dawn, they had traveled four or five miles from the compound. But that was it. A North Vietnamese patrol found the pair hiding in a bramble thicket near an abandoned churchyard. The two were captured, blindfolded and handcuffed, and returned to prison. Dramesi was tortured for 38 days, flogged with a fan belt, punched, strapped into excruciating positions by ropes, and kept awake. He was strung in the ropes 15 times. Eventually he broke.

In a horror chamber close to Dramesi, the communists tortured Atterberry so gruesomely that his shrieks of pain could be heard two blocks away. Atterberry died on May 18, 1969, just eight days after the breakout.

The communists didn't stop with punishing Dramesi and Atterberry. They tortured other prisoners-some for weeks-who had not participated in the escape attempt and even extended the torture to other prisons.

"So traumatic had been the overall experience that even when escape became a more feasible option late in the captivity, the prisoners were still haunted by the catastrophic consequences of the DramesiAtterberry attempt," the historians wrote.

Read the whole thing.

Splash, out


NAIC Confirms AIG will be able to pay claims 
I thought so.

Why are the insurers in a position to help out the financially challenged parent? State insurance regulators have numerous actions they can take to prevent an insurer from failing. Rating downgrades and drops in share price do not change an insurer’s ability to pay claims. From conservative accounting rules and mandatory annual CPA audits to investment regulations/limitations and minimum capital/surplus requirements, a state insurance regulator’s “toolbox” allows insurers to handle greater losses than other parts of the financial sector in down-market cycles. Additional regulatory tools include performing ongoing financial analysis of insurers, and on-site examinations.

How are the policyholders protected, in the unlikely event that the insurer fails? Claims from individual policyholders are given the utmost priority over other creditors in these matters — and, in the unlikely event that assets are not enough to cover these claims, there is still another safety net in place to protect consumers: the state guaranty funds. These funds are in place in all states. If an insurance company becomes unable to pay claims, the guaranty fund will provide coverage, subject to certain limits, similar to the FDIC's coverage for bank accounts.

The NAIC, which is a consortium of state-level insurance commissioners, and which jealously guards its turf against the encroachment of federal regulators, gets in a subtle dig at the feds:

“The key distinction here is that AIG’s insurance subsidiaries did not cause this crisis — rather, they will play a critical role in the solution,” Praeger added. “Calls for federal regulation of insurance in light of these events are simply unable to be supported. State regulatory oversight has kept the AIG insurance subsidiaries solvent, despite the actions of its federally regulated parent and non-insurance entities. If future developments challenge that solvency, there are state insurance regulatory safeguards in place to protect policyholders.”

Current AIG policy holders and annuitants should be fine.

Just goes to show you: The stock jockeys and investment bankers get all the press on CNBC. But it's the insurance guys who are the adults at the dinner table.

Splash, out


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The Palin Vagina-Sniffing Continues 
....Literally, this time.

Via Ann Althouse

Splash, out


(P.S: I'm introducing the Palin's Vagina tag. This may be a blogosphere first. But it's really because I'm trying to bump up my traffic from liberals, and Palin's Vagina, for some reason, is the only thing those panty-sniffing ratfucks can think about anymore.)

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Thursday, September 18, 2008

Letters, I get letters... 
This one comes from Chris.

As a confirmed vagina-sniffer, I take great offense to your labeling of the blogging of Andrew Sullivan as a vagina-sniffing. I've been a vagina-sniffer my whole adult life, and enjoy this magnificent practice immensely. All the vagina-sniffers I know are fine upstanding members of the community that enjoy rewarding careers and come from all walks of life. If there were more vagina-sniffers, and more vagina-sniffing, this world no doubt, would be a better place. I request, nay demand, that you retract your label of Andrew Sullivan as a vagina-sniffer.

I stand here convicted. As a Christian, I strive to live up to the standards God holds for me every day...even knowing that every day I will fall short of His glory, and I must therefore rely on grace and His mercy for redemption.

I should not have pointed out the speck in Mr. Sullivan's eye without having first stopped to consider the plank 50-foot steel girder in my own.

Indeed, given what I know about Mr. Sullivan's, er, proclivities, I would assume that he is even less prone to be a practicing vagina-sniffer than I.

Squirt, out


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Financial matters 
Sorry I haven't posted on the recent happenings on Wall Street. It's been fascinating, so far, but starting up my own insurance practice has taken up almost all my time and energy lately. Most of the time, if I'm blogging, I'm screwing up, because I should be working.

I haven't been following the news extremely intently, either, for the same reasons, but I do have a few thoughts, in no particular order.

1.) Do what you will: capital is at hazard. There is no return without risk. And today, even money market holders are discovering that there is risk here, too. The Putnam money market fund 'broke the buck' and was forced to distribute assets to shareholders, but that's just the beginning. It will get uglier.

The combination of low interest rates on bonds, flat returns on stocks, and a declining property tax base, together with a history of outlandish assumptions on asset returns on the part of pension fund managers (thank you, idiot stock jockeys!) is going to spell trouble for municipalities and their pension fund obligations. I anticipate a round of pension failures on the part of municipalities. The only way I see around that is substantial tax levees at the local level, or a decision to inflate our way out of the mess. Either way, retirees and net savers will get killed.

Compounding the problem is the bond insurance situation. For decades, companies that have insured muni bond investors against the risk of default have been pricing bond default risk AS IF IT WILL NEVER HAPPEN.

That was wrong.

If there is a round of muni defaults, as Mr. Jain explains, these AA and AAA companies will crumble under the strain, because of the mispricing in prior years and their continuing obligations to honor pricing from past years. In that case, there will be another markdown of their assets. More tellingly, though, it is impossible to predict the strain on their cash flows. It could well drive more firms out of business, including household names.

Here's one principal of risk management: If you are relying on insurance to make good on your bonds, you're screwing up to begin with. Now, most people don't have the ability to analyze securities to that extent, and at some point, most will have to trust a financial professional to help them. But the fundamental is this: Don't rely on high yields to accomplish your goals for you. Look first at safety of principal...even without insurance.

Believe me...you don't want to be relying on cash today and have to wait for FDIC to get around to you. You want your financial institution to be strong to begin with.

This is true of any investment, whether insured or not. From a bondholder's perspective, the assets of the enterprise should be sufficient to comfortably cover the interest payments EVEN IN THE 100-YEAR STORM.

Why? Because with the average life expectancy of 84 years, you have an 84 percent chance of living through that 100-year storm...and they don't have to be 100 years apart.

Now, at this point, I have a bit of a conflict of interest, because my employer is a mutually-owned life insurance company. But there is a reason I selected a mutual, rather than a stock-holder-owned insurance company, and that reason is this:

Any insurance company owned by stockholders, rather than policy-owners, has a fundamental conflict of interest: It must keep stock holders happy by reporting competitive earnings and delivering ever-increasing dividends. The temptation, then, is to try to "keep up with the Jones's" by investing in higher-yielding instruments in order to show stronger dividends to shareholders--at the expense of policyholders.

A mutual company, in contrast, has no such conflict: It is free to match its floating portfolio - those premiums which have not been required to pay claims - to its expected liabilities. Excess capital can be reinvested for future storms, or it is returned to policy holders where it can purchase additional insurance or be used to reduce premiums. (You can also take it in cash, but it's taxable.)

Now, AIG policy holders will pay the price.

Will AIG be able to pay claims?

Yes. I believe AIG will have no problem paying current claims, and will stand by current policy holders. If there's a problem, I believe other insurance companies will help out. Should a death claim go unpaid, ANYWHERE in the life insurance industry, it will do lasting damage to all insurers. The people who may take a hit are people whose health has declined since they became clients: Clients who had planned to increase coverage may want to shop for a new insurer. But at any other insurer, they may have to pass more stringent underwriting than they would have at AIG. AIG may also have guaranteed the right to convert term policies to permanent insurance. But this guarantee may be worthless if AIG is no longer writing new policies. Will they make it? I have no idea. I would assume that if AIG goes under, that other carriers will take on their term clients. Permanent policies may be a little trickier, because the cash value may or may not support the planned death benefits. Whole lifers will probably be OK. But in this era of razor-thin returns on bonds, God help the universal and variable universal life clients. Mortality expenses mount with age, even while assets remain flat, so in my view, universal life policies are lapses waiting to happen for anyone but the affluent. (My expectations on stocks are somewhat better, if only because they've taken such a beating lately).

As far as the situation with Lehman goes, I have nothing useful to add. I'm not sorry to see Merrill Lynch go, because in my opinion the firm violated the public trust back in 1999-2000, and maybe should have been rent asunder back then. I'm not sorry to see them go. Ditto for Morgan Stanley and the Mary Meekers of the world. I have no real problem with Goldman Sachs or Lehman brothers, and of course one's heart goes out to the regular Joes, the clerical workers who did nothing wrong and are out of a job because of the sins of management.

Fannie and Freddie: Of course we had to bail them out. Everyone "knew" about the "implicit" U.S. guarantee of Fannie and Freddie. If you were in Bernanke's shoes, and you looked at what would happen without such a guarantee, I think you would agree that there was no real choice. The choice, if Congress ever had one, should have been exercised years ago when times were good, and Fannie and Freddie still had time to hedge their own bets, and investors could have priced these agency assets accordingly, without an ensuing collapse of the banking system. Congress knew everyone was expecting the "implicit" guarantee, and did nothing but wink. That's tantamount to agreeing to it, in my view - especially when the downside of letting them collapse utterly would be more devastating BY FAR than the cost of the bailout.

Lehman? Feh. Their trading partners can contain the damage. They won't bring down the entire system (though I imagine it's getting difficult for Goldman Sachs to find worthy trading partners, taking counterparty risk into account. If Morgan Stanley fails, I think things will be tough for Goldman Sachs.)

Did deregulation cause this?


Deregulation allowed banks and brokerage houses to get into each other's businesses. But banks are not collapsing because of the brokerage arms. And brokerages are not collapsing because of banking operations, but because they simply mispriced risky assets - something no amount of regulation could help with.

As it stands now, thank God we DID deregulate, because Merrill Lynch was able to find a willing buyer in Bank of America, and Morgan Stanley may find another willing buyer in another bank, Wachovia.

So for now, deregulation has saved a lot of collective asses.

Did ACORN cause this?

The argument goes that ACORN pressured Fannie and Freddie to guarantee crap loans to people who have no business buying houses. But this does not explain the collapses, except at the margins. Last year, Countrywide only had a 6% exposure to subprimes. That's a hit they could take. It wasn't the lower class that caused the collapse. It was overlending to the middle class and affluent, and the collapse in underwriting standards across the board. Think of it: The poor could only buy so much house, anyway.

So ACORN and Democratic party pressure may have contributed to the slaughter, but only at the margins.

Could more regulation have helped? Well, you could have increased capital reserve requirements for mortgage banks...which would have had the effect of increasing the requirement for down payments, I think (tightening the LTV ratio banks will be willing to lend on real estate.) But saying that is not very useful, because back a couple of years ago, the focus of politicians was, naturally, to extend the dream of homeownership to as many people as possible.

Who can blame them? They are politicians. But you cannot blame politicians for being politicians. The problem wasn't politicians acting like politicians. The problem was bankers failing to act like bankers. Meaning that they violated the precept I listed above: Lend first with the objective of a secure return of principal.

For more of my thinking on financial matters, see here,

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

New Jersey Now In Play for McCain 
"This isn't the New Jersey I thought I knew."

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...And the obsessive, pathetic sniffing of Palin family genitalia continues.

Hey, at least Andy is confining his vagina-sniffing to an adult now!

What a sad, pathetic little man he's become.

Splash, out


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Compare and Contrast 
Compare and contrast this paragraph

Barack Obama's White House campaign angrily denied Monday a report that he had secretly urged the Iraqis to postpone a deal to withdraw US troops until after November's election.

...with this paragraph from later in the same story:

In fact, Obama had told the Iraqis that they should not rush through a "Strategic Framework Agreement" governing the future of US forces until after President George W. Bush leaves office, she said.

So it is true.

Obama was freelancing, engaging in his own personal foreign policy without co-ordinatng with the executive branch. Indeed, according to his own spokesperson, he was engaging a foreign government in actively trying to subvert and sabotage the foreign policy of the United States.

If this is true, then in my view, it is potentially grounds for impeachment.

It proves, also, that Obama does not have the maturity to be President of the United States. He certainly does not respect the constitutional role of the executive in formulating and carrying out foreign policy.

Legislators should not be visiting foreign governments and actively trying to weaken the hand of United States negotiators. Period. Obama wouldn't stand for it if he were president, either.

Splash, out


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Saturday, September 13, 2008

Libtard doctor fears that Palin's example could reduce the number of abortions 
If this were an Onion headline, it STILL wouldn't be funny.

But a senior Canadian doctor is now expressing concerns that such a prominent public role model as the governor of Alaska and potential vice president of the United States completing a Down syndrome pregnancy may prompt other women to make the same decision against abortion because of that genetic abnormality. And thereby reduce the number of abortions.

Published reports in Canada say about 9 out of 10 women given a diagnosis of Down syndrome choose to terminate the pregnancy through abortion.

Dr. Andre Lalonde, executive vice president of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists in Ottawa, worries that Palin's now renowned decision may cause abortions in Canada to decline as other women there and elsewhere opt to follow suit.

But wait! There's even less!

He says not every woman is prepared to deal with the consequences of Down babies, who have developmental delays, some physical difficulties and often a shortened lifespan.

Wider use of blood screening and amniocentesis during pregnancies can now accurately predict the presence of Down syndrome.

Lalonde says his primary concern is that women have the....

...choice of abortion and that greater public awareness of women making choices like Palin to complete a pregnancy and give birth to their genetically-abnormal baby could be detrimental and confusing to the women and their families.

"The worry is that this will have an implication for abortion issues in Canada," Lalonde tells the Globe and Mail.

I should hope so!

I wonder what this guy's wife thinks, when she lies next to him in bed. Lucky for him, I'm sure she probably loves him, despite his obvious psychic deformity.

What a ghoul.

Splash, out


Hat tip: Hugh Hewitt

ADDED: This is what socialized medicine can do to doctors. Capitated contracts... meaning health plans that pay a flat rate per assigned patient to doctors ... create a poisonous incentive to kill expensive, unprofitable people.

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Friday, September 12, 2008

Democrats don't care about poor people! 
John McCain gave over 27% of his income to charity in 06-07.

Obama gave 5.8% and 6.1% in those two years.

Hmmm. 27 to 6. Sounds like Koufax's Win/Loss record in his hall of fame prime!

McCain might not be able to type well. But he knows how to write a check!

As for Biden: He gave three tenths of one percent.

Wow. I don't think Palin's released her figures yet, but all she has to do is tithe, and she will be body-slamming Obama...while raising four children, on less money!

Biden isn't going to want to show his face. "Stand up, Chuck!" ROFL!

Splash, out


ADDED: Plus, I'd weight what a conservative gives to charity a lot more than what a libtard gives. If a conservative does charitable giving, it will go to feed the hungry, teach people to read, it will go to the Scouts, to Little League, the Red Cross, or other worthy causes.

When a libtard gives to a charity, it's more likely going to PETA or some damned tree-hugging outfit dedicated to saving dolphins from becoming sushi.

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Seeing Red 
This is just fucking special.

I wear that combat patch, and wear it proudly.

That combat patch is something special.

Men have died to give that red patch its meaning.

To think that someone can go to Sears and buy the right to wear that patch with a 20 dollar bill is stupid.

For the Army to think it can LICENSE such a right for 30 pieces of silver, or any other price, is an outrage.

I'd love to find out who's bright idea this was, so I can send my patch to him in the mail.

Thanks to Paul. (Good luck, and take care of the troops, friend!)

Splash, out



Fiddle Blogging 
There is a special place in Hell reserved for musicians who use too much vibrato. And the darkest pits in that special place have been earmarked for vocalists, violinists, and heavy metal guitar players.

So let's take a look at how expressive and powerful a simple tune can be... with no vibrato at all.


Josefin's Waltz.

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Rumor has it... 
Now, I'm not exactly saying that Josh Marshall is a panty-wearing buggerer of boys and a card-carrying member of the Al Qaeda Ladies' Auxillary.

I'd hate to be the one to spread false rumors. But you know, I heard about another rumor somewhere that turned out to be true.

No. Just kidding. I wouldn't run with such a rumor. Who would run with an unsourced rumor like that?

Well...Josh Marshall and the libtards at Talking Points Memo, that's who!

Splash, out


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HA HA HA HA!!!! 

"Stand up, Chuck!!!"


Splash, out


UPDATE: Why does Obama hate the handicapped?

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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Ok, let's f*ck with A.ce some more! 
Ok, Countercolumnites, I've got another mission for you.

Your mission is to read this post at Ace's place:


Remember to replace the exclamation point between www and ace with a period!

There are a wealth of disgusting and off-color terms in there for you to choose from.

Then pick out random whacked-out search terms on it in connection with Sarah Palin. The more disgusting and pornographic the better.

Go to the Google page. Then go visit Ace's site from there so it registers as a hit.

I'm shooting for hundreds of hits, so everyone's gotta participate. I wanna see if we can generate enough traffic to warrant a post from him saying "WTF!?!?"

My search term was Palin m*lkee loads (I'm intentionally misspelling so as not to attract attention on teh Internets)




Countercolumn News Ticker 
McCain declares jihad against community organizers ...

Alaska to be sold on e-Bay ...

Organization of Flyover States Admits Alaska to their ranks ...
Hawaii "not even vetted ..."

Estee Lauder Stock Soars With Palin Nomination ...

McCain Registers as a Republican ...

Town Doubles Over in Laughter As Community Organizer-Led Protest March Devolves Into Chaos ...

Fannie Mae Secretly Jealous Of Sibling's Bailout Package ...

Small-Town Mayor's Convention in Nubieber, California Canceled Due to Lodging Shortage ...

Naughty Librarian I, II, III, IV and V Flies Off Shelves At Area Adult Shops ...

Lipstick Lesbians for Palin to Hold Fish Bake Fundraiser ...

Developing ...

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Obama and the lipstick comment 
Having watched Obama deliver the gaffe, I've got two things to say:

1.) There's no way in Hell it was accidental.
2.) There's no way in Hell that it's a big deal.

Welcome to the majors, kid!

UPDATE: There's also no way in hell that the "fish" part of the comment should be construed as a misogynist remark. That's just ridiculous.

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Stupider and stupider 
Proof that they're now trying to throw ANYTHING at Governor Palin:

The Democratic Underground says Palin named two kids after witches and "wears a pentagram!"

That one was too stupid, even for the morons on Democratic Underground!

Now, I did do a search on Piper Palin on the DU site, out of curiosity. And to their credit, they were a lot classier with respect to Piper than the HuffPo crowd was.

Which doesn't say a lot for HuffPo!

(P.S., Full disclosure: Palin turned me into a newt. She will turn MILLIONS of us into newts.)

Splash, out


Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Libtards going after six-year-old Piper Palin 
First, its David Carr, a man who neglected his own child to feed his own drug addiction, writing that "journalists wrinkled their noses in disgust" when Piper Palin was filmed kitty-licking her brother's hair into place.

Taking their cue from the clueless David Barr, the scumnuts at HuffPo go after Piper, and use that adorable six year old as a weapon with which to bash her mother.


Sample comments:

You Right Winged Hypocrites weren't crying when Michelle Obama was getting blasted. Remember you said Family was FAIR game. So let the games continue!!!!

Totally creepy. Hasn't she been taught not to lick her hands? And to put it on her baby brother...eewww...makes me cringe. Needs more home trainig - nothing cute about this no matter howthey change to spin it. Disgusting...

I agree. This is probably a result of HOME SCHOOLING by her mom. She can't train her own children, how can she lead a country!!!!!!

1. Pregnant + an Alcoholic
2. Lacks home training

Do we really want her running anything at the White House?

No way! No how! No McCain/Palin!!!! HRC

Shows her lack of home training further pointing to her mother's incompetence!!!

It is one of the sickest perversions of politics yet that a 6-year old was co-opted to perform a stunt in front of a camera ready to tape it. Who told her to do that? Was Karl Rove under the seat whispering instructions?

this is just amazingly gross

I feel the same way. I turned my head when the clip was shown on television.

I question if Piper is being home-schooled just so she's around to take care of Trig.

Now that was too cute! Too bad her parents won't let her go to school with her friends instead of babysit.

I guess hair licking must be commonplace amongst you conservatives. What other strange behaviors do you have that we 'Libs' don't know about?

Those are from just the first few pages. Just keep scrolling!

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Monday, September 08, 2008

The Media's meltdown 
One thing the Palin candidacy has done is it has finally brought the true libtard nature of much of our mass media into bold relief that, for the first time, is not only obvious to politics junkies like us, but to the casual news consumer as well.

According to Rasmussen, fully 68% of voters believe that "most reporters try to help the candidate they want to win." And -- no surprise -- 49% of those surveyed believe reporters are backing Barack Obama, while just 14% think the media is in the tank for Sen. McCain.

Meanwhile, 51% of those surveyed thought the press was "trying to hurt" Mrs. Palin with its coverage.

Perhaps most troubling for the press corps, though, was this finding: "55% said media bias is a bigger problem for the electoral process than large campaign donations."

Why now? Well, the reporting has been bad for ages. But when the media was reporting badly about the Iraq war, though, they could get away with it, because other than the warbloggers and a few others, Main Street USA had no way to compare the coverage of the Iraq War with the reality on the ground. Further, because the libtards in the media knew they had months and years to discredit the war (whether it was a conscious or unconscious effort is not relevant here), they could get the job done with a constant, low-grade idiocy that was next to impossible for most people to discern.

With Palin it's different.

The libtard media is going great guns to discredit Palin by throwing everything but the kitchen sink at her. And the interns are unbolting the sink from the wall to make it throwable even as we speak.

But they can't. Why? Because unlike the Iraq War, which was unknowable to anyone who was not there or at least exceptionally plugged in to military sources, nearly everyone in America has up close personal knowledge of a woman with five children, a mother with a special needs child, a working woman, a PTA mom, a hockey mom, a member of an Assemblies of God church.

The media simply cannot smear Palin without smearing a close friend or family member or coworker of nearly everyone in the country. It does not compute.

Further, the outrageous media attacks on Palin and her family have come in such a compressed time period that their classlessness and cluelessness has become obvious. The viciousness and sheer rabidness of the foaming-at-the-mouth press corps has been compacted into a vile little capsule and readily identifiable to mainstream America.

Now that America's figured out what's going on, the anointed media class is crying "culture war."

We've heard it before. But this time it's different, I think. The polling and the screaming from advertisers and other stakeholders in media companies has gotten so bad that even CNBC is sacking Olbermann from the election coverage anchor gig (though how ANYONE could ever have thought it appropriate to allow that red-eyed whacko anywhere NEAR a debate) as well as Chris "chill running up my leg" Matthews.

The charade just became untenable.
Splash, out


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Sunday, September 07, 2008

McCain Leads Obama 54%-44% after the convention 
That's among likely voters. (USAToday/Gallup)

Hey, Jeralyn Merritt! How's that Palin withdrawal pool coming along?

Splash, out


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More on Obama (not) joining the military 
Obama graduated in 1979. He says now he didn't join because there was no active military conflict at the time.

The Iranian hostage crisis began less than six months after Obama would have graduated high school. The Cold War was in full swing. The Soviets invaded Afghanistan in December of that same year. We had troops on the DMZ in Korea the whole time, and it was flaring up from time to time. The President of the United States had narrowly survived a rabbit attack that spring. And most significantly, the Empire had just destroyed the planet Alderaan.

Clearly, Obama had, shall we say, "other priorities."

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Ha ha ha ha! 

(What else can you say?)

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Oh, by the way 
Jeralyn Merritt's now declaring open season on Palin's children.

Stay classy, libtards!

Splash, out


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McCain/Palin pull ahead in the latest Zogby poll 
TalkLeft's Jeralyn Merritt, who had started the pool on when McCain would fire his disastrous Veep pick, or she would, ahem, "save him the paperwork," could not be reached for comment.

Splash, out


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Saturday, September 06, 2008

Behold the media! 
Behold the source!

“So Sambo beat the bitch!”
This is how Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin described Barack Obama’s win over Hillary Clinton to political colleagues in a restaurant a few days after Obama locked up the Democratic Party presidential nomination.
According to Lucille, the waitress serving her table at the time and who asked that her last name not be used, Gov. Palin was eating lunch with five or six people when the subject of the Democrat’s primary battle came up. The governor, seemingly not caring that people at nearby tables would likely hear her, uttered the slur and then laughed loudly as her meal mates joined in appreciatively.
“It was kind of disgusting,” Lucille, who is part Aboriginal, said in a phone interview after admitting that she is frightened of being discovered telling folks in the “lower 48” about life near the North Pole.
Then, almost with a sigh, she added, “But that’s just Alaska.”

So we're going to run explosive charges and rely on an anonymous waitress.

There were, according to this anonymous source, a half-dozen other witnesses. The juiciest scoop of this reporter's abortive career and there's no effort made to verify a word?

Well, let's hope it's a very short career.

That's inexcusable. Journalistic malpractice, even for a rag called The L.A. Progressive.

Splash, out


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Friday, September 05, 2008

Man dies in 239 MPH motorcycle crash 
My favorite part of the article is this:

Investigators were not sure what caused Cliff Gullett, of Bozeman, Mont., to lose control of the motorcycle Wednesday during a time trial.

No idea. Really. No clue at all. Honest.

Heeeeeere's yer sign.

Splash, out


Criminal Prosecution of Bush Administration Officials 
Firedoglake's Jane Hamsher, the libtard responsible for putting a photoshop of Joe Lieberman in blackface during the 2006 Senate race in Connecticut, has a chat on Bloggingheads with Ann Althouse.

At issue: Should an Obama administration pursue criminal investigations against Bush Administration officials, including Bush and Cheney personally, for crimes allegedly committed while in office.

I was struck by Hamsher's presentation. She appears quite reasonable through most of the dialogue. But when Althouse draws her out on this topic, out comes The Beast.

Hamsher argues that Bush lied in order to get us into a war, and 4,000 soldiers are dead. "That's murder!" she exclaims. And she states that she and her readers will be "out there with torches and pitchforks" to ensure that Bush officials are prosecuted.

Her argument relies on the founding fathers and the Constitution, and she argues that it would set a bad precedent NOT to criminally prosecute Bush officials. Good liberal she is, she states "If Bush has not committed a crime, then he has nothing to fear."

That's right. Scratch a liberal, you'll find a fascist right under the skin.

At any rate, when she mentions the founding fathers, she is evincing a grasp of American history that only a cinematography school could let anyone get away with.

The reason our Republic survived, and France went through several republics, is because the Jeffersonians and Hamiltonians, by and large, settled their differences through elections (Aaron Burr notwithstanding) and not by trying to throw their predecessors in jail.

Had they instead followed Hamsher's advice, the two sides would have become armed camps nearly immediately, and the American democratic experiment would have been strangled in the cradle by Hamsher and her Committees of Public Safety.

Althouse is right: this notion that each succeeding administration should spend time prosecuting the one before it over what are essentially political disagreements is pure poison. It is a dagger pointed straight at the heart of our democracy. (Hamsher, you moron - you can make a better case prosecuting single mothers who have an abortion or their doctors for murder than you can making murder charges stick against Bush for ordering the invasion of Iraq.)

If Hamsher gets her way, then every succeeding administration will 1.) not be able to fill its slots with quality people, because service to the government will then become a legal liability, and 2.) have EVERY incentive to cheat, lie and steal during the following election, since everyone in it will have a personal stake.

If you have an impeachment case, bring it. If not, then try to win the next election.

Hamsher: A pretty face, but an idealistic twit.

Splash, out


ADDED: It's too bad that the Democratic Vice Presidential nominee is such a blowhard that he can say there will be criminal investigations of Bush officials under an Obama administration, and we can't be sure whether he meant it.

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It's "Tommy this" and "Tommy that" 
...and "Chuck him out, the brute!"

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You disappoint me.

I thought you had more class, character and common sense than this transparent attempt at manipulation.

You know you launched the Obama rocket. You're scared to death of Palin. But you should do everything you can to make sure she stays in politics.

If you don't, Palin is the one woman on the earth who, if she doesn't win the Vice Presidency, could start her own show and empire one day and threaten your own.

I can see it now: The Sarah Palin show. Watch her gut a moose on the counter, right before your eyes!

Nothing says Christmas like whale blubber and pemmican.

Integrating elk antlers seemlessly into your decor.

Space-saving tips for the igloo.

We'll put it right up against your time slot.

We'z in ur demografik, steelin ur advurtizers.

Splash, out


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Paul Eaton returns! 
Here he is getting eviscerated by FOX News reporter Megyn Kelly (who disemboweled US magazine the other day!)

Just watch the vid! This guy made major general? Can you imagine him as a middle-ranking officer giving a tough briefing? (No wonder he didn't like Rumsfeld!)

Long-time readers will remember this post on Paul Eaton from a few years back.

Splash, out


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Biased media outlet shoots self in foot 
Readers are cancelling US magazine subscriptions by the thousands.

“When Us went to print Monday night, it looked like the ticket was falling apart," says one magazine editor. “They went to print thinking Palin was dead in the water, and their mistake was thinking everyone who reads Us is a Democrat, when they’re not.


That's one publication that deserves to die. If they don't shitcan their slimeball editor post-haste, that magazine may not survive.

Mags can be narrow-margin to begin with. Watch out for future layoffs at US. That will tell journalists whether the publisher is willing to throw innocent artists, researchers, and admin staff under the bus in order to protect favored Dems.

I wouldn't want to work for such an organization very long. And I wouldn't work for an editor like him for 30 seconds.

The fact is, though, that this is happening in a lot of outlets - albeit in slow motion. What's different about this one is that reader disaffection can be traced to a single incident, and not the slow drip, drip, drip of a thousand bad editorial decisions slowly making the paper either unreadable or useless and destroying the brand and credibility of its voice.

Splash, out


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Thursday, September 04, 2008

Liveblogging the McCain speech 
10:06: Never done the liveblogging thing before. I don't have a TV, so I don't have the visuals.

10:06: The John McCain film. What's up with these cheesy soundracks? Cheap-ass synths? No Aaron Copeland? No real strings?

10:08: One thing that should be mentioned: Had McCain never been captured, his role in the Forrestal fire would have made Navy lore. Bravo Zulu.

10:09: I still have to adjust my insulin from the Cindy McCain film.

10:10: Father of seven. That means that the McCain/Palin kids could field a football team!

10:11: The change. Will come from strength. From a man. Who. Found his strength. In a dank. Cell. Wouldn't it be cool if Christopher Walken did the voiceover?

10:12: "When you live in a box?" We used to DREAM of living in a box!

10:13: Jesse Jackson: "We're gonna cut his nut off!"

10:14: It's surprising, but NPR's coverage hasn't pissed me off yet!

10:14: Their tribe chants "Obama." Our tribe chants "USA." 'Nuff said.

10:15: YESH WE CAN!!!!

10:16: "I'm grateful to the President of the United States for leading us during these dark days." So much for distancing himself from the President.

10:18 He's indebted to his wife Cindy and his seven children. He didn't even have to check with his staff on how many he had! (And he calls himself a sailor!)

10:19 An heir to a beer distributorship would make a fine first lady! Tap Now! Tap here! End our dependence on foreign lagers!

10:20 "Much more unites us than divides us. We are fellow Americans, and that's a distinction that means more to me than any other." Yes. Unfortunately, a substantial minority of Obama's followers are not proud of our country, like we are.


10:24: If he can't control the cheering in his own convention hall, then how on earth can he expect to control the Soviets?

10:25: Heh. He says "Wahrshington." Isn't that a Washington way of speaking? But his nasal voice...very midrangy... sounds Southwestern to me.

10:26: Palin has balanced a budget? If I were the Obama campaign, I'd take a hard look at the Wasilla operating budget under her tenure. As for the Alaska budget, it's not hard to balance a budget that is highly correlated with oil revenues during a period of skyrocketing oil prices. I like Palin, but let's be real.

10:28: "We're going to stop leaving our country's problems for some unluckier generation to fix." Is this code for Social Security reform?

10:29: "I fought corruption." You washcloth-stealing son-of-a-bitch.

10:30: "I will veto it. I will make them famous. And you will know their names!" Bravo fucking-A, Mac.

10:31: "I'd rather lose an election than see my country lose a war."

10:32 Mentioning Petraeus by name. "And the brave men and women he has the honor to command." This is warrior code talk. Nicely done. And sticking a shiv in the Betray-us crowd.

10:33: I fight for you. I fight for Tony. I fight for the family of Matthew Stanley. I fight for regular people. Sounds like he's all about picking fights. Warmonger!

10:34: "I fight to make sure that the country they fought for and never returned to." Only warriors use construction like this. This is how veterans can tell each other from a distance. Signals like this. Few Obamanites understand that kind of syntax.

Notice that unlike Obama's people, he doesn't infantilize our fallen or make them out to be victims.

10:37: "A culture of life." ZING!

10:39: "Where a bureaucrat stands between you and your doctor." Nice line. Although to an extent, that's true with private insurance too. The difference: Competition.

10:40: Long series of contrasts between his and Obama's tax plan. Libtard criticisms that his speech is short on policy substance in 3...2...1...

10:41: "Wishing away the Global economy." Nice line.

10:41 Federal wage insurance? Paid for how? (I'd bring in Robert Shiller to try to figure out a private solution for that)

10:43 School choice. I agree. But that's governor stuff. I don't see the federal role here. I wonder if they're trying to suppress the African-American turnout, or peel off some of that vote? I don't see that as very effective, though.

10:46: Why talk about education before energy? This is an issue McCain/Palin can OWN. They should be hammer and tongs on energy policy, and set Obama back on his heels. Get inside that OODA-loop! Force him to argue AGAINST drilling and cheap, renewable nuclear energy.

10:49: Sticking up for democracy in Georgia.

10:50 I know what the military should do....and what it shouldn't do. Bang.

10:51 It just occured to me that if he's elected, he will be the third consecutive aviator Republican president. (I believe Reagan also wore the aviation branch insignia during WWII, no?)

10:53: "I have that record, and the scars to prove it. Senator Obama does not." Nice.

10:54: Transparency and accountability. Going after the middle. But the 'imperfect servant' line is pure code talk for evangelicals..as was Palin's "servant heart."

10:55 "I was blessed by misfortune. I was blessed because I served in the company of heroes."

10:57 "I was beginning to learn the limits of my selfish independence." Kind of like Job in the belly of that whale.

10:57: First in, first out. Heh. Who says he doesn't know economics? That's accounting!

10:59 "Get back up and fight for the men I served with, because every day they fought for me." This man will make an outstanding commander-in-chief.

11:00 "I wasn't my own man anymore. I was my country's."

Suck it, Obama!

11:01 "I will fight for her as long as I draw breath, so help me God." Obama doesn't know the meaning of those words.

11:02 "Nothing brings greater happiness in life than to serve a cause greater than yourself." That's so true.

11:03 "Fight with me." Reminds me of "walk with me." But, you know, it kicks ass.

11:04: Climaxing. I didn't know he could do this. I mean, speaking. I knew about the five children. (And no, I'm not drawing a distinction between his natural children and his adopted children.)

Libtard accusing him of

11:06: E.J. Dionne, a member of the Washington anointed. "It wasn't a delivery that moved the crowd." Fucktard.

11:06 "There wasn't as much policy as I expected." Right on cue. I predicted that, didn't I?

11:08: 100,000 luftballoons!

11:08: They're playing Heart's "Barracuda!"

Gleen Grenwald emails: "If you can't trust McCain with your washcloth, can you really trust him to run the country?"

11:13: The moron talking heads just said that McCain never mentioned Bush. Either Bush. Well, no. That's because he mentioned his gratitude to Teh President Of The United States, genius!

11:18: A friend just texted me. She's 27, I think. She said she had no idea of McCain's POW past until she watched the convention tonight. Same goes for another friend in the same age range, as well, who didn't know until I played her a video a couple of weeks ago. So the nattering nabobs are criticizing McCain for bringing it up again. But it's not like the media is doing a great job of communicating that remarkable biography without him and his campaign reinforcing the message.

The gloves are off 
Howie Kurtz, whom I have a good deal of respect for, relates his interview with a McCain senior official about the press coverage over the last week - and he is spitting mad.

Sen. John McCain's top campaign strategist accused the news media Tuesday of being "on a mission to destroy" Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin by displaying "a level of viciousness and scurrilousness" in pursuing questions about her personal life.

In an extraordinary and emotional interview, Steve Schmidt said his campaign feels "under siege" by wave after wave of news inquiries that have questioned whether Palin is really the mother of a 4-month-old baby, whether her amniotic fluid had been tested and whether she would submit to a DNA test to establish the child's parentage.

Arguing that the media queries are being fueled by "every rumor and smear" posted on left-wing Web sites, Schmidt said mainstream journalists are giving "closer scrutiny" to McCain's little-known running mate than to Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama.

The McCain camp has been unusually aggressive in pushing back against the media, and it seems to hope to persuade journalists to back off in their scrutiny of Palin. Obama campaign officials have complained to news organizations that their man has been subjected to considerably more investigative reporting than McCain has, but they have done so in more low-key fashion.

By contrast, Schmidt spoke on the record in denouncing as "an absolute work of fiction" a New York Times account of the process by which the McCain campaign vetted Palin. He also charged that Newsweek columnist Howard Fineman was predicting that the governor might have to step down as McCain's vice presidential choice.

Just to be clear, the New York Times is looking pretty idiotic after the whole "Palin was a member of a secessionist party" and "Palin was a Buchananite" memes.

But that's nothing new to readers of this blog.

Let me zero the sights a little more precisely on New York Times reporter Elisabeth Bumiller. Bumiller reported that Palin was a member of the American Independence Party for two years.

Bumiller told Kurtz that she's "completely confident" in her story. (Quoted on page 2 on the online version)

Yeah, those "unimpeachable sources" are a bitch, eh, Bumiller?

That's what happens, though, when you rely on DailyKos for your story ideas.

Splash, out


P.S., Kurtz himself blows it here:

Bloggers on the left and right increasingly drive media coverage by turning up the volume on questions until they are difficult to ignore. Sometimes they are right, as when they questioned what CBS's Dan Rather said were National Guard documents in a 2004 report on President Bush's military service that led to Rather's ouster as the network's anchor. And sometimes they are wrong. Last year, the New Republic retracted a soldier's dispatch on petty wartime cruelty in Iraq, and National Review Online acknowledged that two blog postings by a former Marine about military movements in Lebanon were misleading.

No, Kurtz...you're filling sandbags for your buddies over at the New Republic. The bloggers were RIGHT on that one. Beauchamp's articles were not blogs, and Beauchamp was not a blogger. Beauchamp's serial fabrications were feature articles, vetted by the editorial staff of the New Republic. (It helps to be fucking your fact checkers).

It was the BLOGGERS who kept that story alive, despite every attempt and stonewalling, delay and deception by the New Republic in their biggest embarrassment since Stephen Glass.

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Media Meltdown 
Ace has been in fine form, and he points us to this compelling video, in which FOX News' s Megyn Kelly just tears the guts out of US Magazine senior editor Scott Peterson for the execrable yellow-journalism cover. In a nutshell, Kelly just tears this pathological, craven little puppy of a man a new ass. You've got to watch it.

Peterson comes across as a textbook dissembler and liar. You could do a training videotape for police and military interrogators on how to spot a guilty fucktard by the way he uses dissembling and evasion and you couldn't have a more classic portrayal than what you have right here.

Now, I must admit, at first I was a little put off by Kelly - I wasn't sure if an ostensibly neutral or balanced reporter ought to be taking such an overtly accusatory tone towards him on camera. But then, I stopped to think about it. If she's any good, she takes her craft seriously, and takes the public trust seriously. And here she is confronted with a guy who is trying to take those ideals she holds dear: balance, impartiality, accuracy in headlines, the eschewing of pointless sensationalism (the cover headline), and here's a guy making a mockery of her profession, and sliming the entire profession with his cravenness.

THAT'S the real outrage. And no editor should ever feel, once he abuses the public trust in the craft of journalism so deliberately and obtusely as Peterson does, that he can hide behind even a veneer of civility.

Instead, rats like that should be hounded from the profession by their peers, both on camera and off.

UPDATE: Oh. Did I say "Scott Peterson?" I'm sorry. His name is really Bradley Jacobs. I got him confused with a different pathological scumbag.

Splash, out


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Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Watch out for this lie: 
The libtards will argue that St. Paul police are running roughshod over the 1st and 4th amendments by being heavy-handed in detaining or arresting convention protesters, all of whom, naturally, are exercising their constitutional freedoms by holding hands, singing old Joan Baez songs, and picking lice out of each others' armpit hair or whatever it is they do. (Curiously, Glenn Greenwald is here posting under his own name).

Conspiracy to kidnap delegates? Meh. It slipped their slippery little minds, I guess.

That's right...left wing radicals are conspiring to respect and uphold democracy by forcibly kidnapping journalists, dropping bags of cement on buses transporting Cub Scouts, stocking up buckets of urine (no doubt for its mellowing properties and for its utility in the storing of crucifixes).

Anyway, here's Greenwald:

Journalists were forcibly detained at gun point. Lawyers on the scene to represent the detainees were handcuffed. Computers, laptops, journals, diaries, and political pamphlets were seized from people's homes. And all of this occurred against U.S. citizens, without a single act of violence having taken place, and nothing more serious than traffic blockage even alleged by authorities to have been planned.

Hmmm. I guess the conspiracy to commit kidnapping kinda puts a hole in that assertion, eh, puppetmaster?

Splash, out


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Tuesday, September 02, 2008

The difference between Executive experience and Legislative experience 
In a nutshell: Executives don't get to vote "present."

Put that in your peace pipe and smoke it, libtards.

Splash, out


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Watch out for this madness... 
The drooling bunch of troglodytes that make up leftard opinion makers are now roundly accusing McCain of failing to vet Palin prior to naming her as the Republican Veep nominee... and exhibit A is the fact that Palin's daughter is expecting. The argument goes like this: The careless incompetents that make up the McCain campaign staff was clearly negligent in not specifically inquiring into the intimate sexual history of a 17-year-old girl.

So I guess now it's expected practice for prospective employers of women to start sniffing out not only the applicant's vaginas, but those of their children, too!

Another triumph for feminism!

What's amazing is that Bill Clinton anticipated all of this as far back as 1996! (Give that man a cigar!)

Of course, the Libtards have no problem with the failure of Democratic delegates to vet and weigh the sexual history of the nominee himself.

Here's a dose of libtard logic for you:

That's right: Bill Clinton, the Democratic nominee of 1992 and again in 1996, is widely known to be a serial philanderer = No problem.

Some 17 year old girl, not running for office, and who has done NOTHING to warrant or deserve this kind of public scrutiny is pregnant (by her intended) = Problem.

Indeed, it's so much of a problem, that Obama's minions of flying monkeys gleefully embark on an intense campaign to use this girl as a bludgeon with which to attack her mother.

Splash, out


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Watch out for this meme... 
The pack of baying hyenas known as the Left will not miss a chance to note that Sarah Palin is "under investigation" in Alaska -- as if that was somehow dispositive of anything. The fact is Bill Clinton spent much of his second term continually under investigation for something. I doubt the libtards would concede that that fact, by itself, meant a damn thing. Fair enough. I wouldn't either. Because it doesn't.

Josh Marshall, at least, has made a game effort to develop the argument. Not that he's got much of one, though. And even he didn't even have the sense to recognize the "Sarah wasn't really pregnant" lie as bullshit when he saw it, instead giving it further exposure on TPM (without noting that the story is pretty much falsified by the story that Bristol is pregnant now. Josh Marshall, super-genius, doesn't know what to make of it.)

Splash, out


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Watch out for this lie... 
The libtards, the intellectually dishonest scum-sucking bottom-dwellers that they are, will not miss a chance to practice an absolutely juvenile sleight-of-hand when the subject of Palin comes up.

When asked about Palin, the same fucktards who made so much of The Man from Hope and who elected Jimmy Carter the peanut farmer to office will tut-tut and refer to Palin's tenure as mayor of Wasilla, Alaska, a town with just a few dozen employees. They will then point to Obama's "executive experience" as head of a campaign. The idiocy: They will completely ignore the fact that Palin isn't a mayor. She's a GOVERNOR. Got that, libtards? GOV-ER-NOR. I'm looking at YOU, Obama.

Like Bill Clinton was when he was elected. And like Ronald Reagan was. And FDR.

There is no stupidity too low for these jackasses.

Splash, out


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Monday, September 01, 2008

Mission Accomplished 
The United States officially passes control and responsibility for Al Anbar back to the Iraqis.

Harry 'The war is lost' Reid could not be reached for comment.

Splash, out



This just in .... 
TalkLeft just discovered that people who attend Christian churches are actually Christians.

Who knew?

Please, lefttards....PLEEEEEAAAAAASE make an issue out of Palin's pastor. The contrast between her pastor (if you go to the Harper's link, there is nothing they've dug up that is at variance with or outside of the conservative Christian or evangelical mainstream. The contrast could not be more damning to Obama/Wright.

These people are so stupid they'll shoot themselves in the foot out of spite, to get vengeance on conservatives for digging up Reverend Wright's vile sermons. Which is doubly stupid, because Jeralyn is not stupid.

ADDED: And in the comments:

What I find is interesting is how I feel as a Christian who happens to be a Democrat reading some of the comments re Palin.
It is astonishing to me how much my Liberal and Democratic Progressive friends are starting to sound like the Republicans I have known all my life here in East TN.

I consider myself a Progressive Christian because I do not believe that my beliefs are the only viable beliefs, but I would be considered to be a creationist.

Suddenly, I find that among many "progressives" I am considered backward, stupid and laughable.

I thought we were the party of tolerance? It seems that many of us have about as much tolerance as those we proclaim to challenge.

Well, the Democratic Party has soiled itself. It's now the party of religious bigotry. (Unless you go to an Amerikkka-hating church. Then it's ok, and you get nominated for president.)

Splash, out,


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