Um. No.

Sarah Palin:

It’s time that normal Joe six-pack American is finally represented in the position of vice presidency


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Roman Hruska:

Hruska is best remembered in American political history for a 1970 speech he made to the Senate urging them to confirm the nomination of G. Harrold Carswell to the Supreme Court. Responding to criticism that Carswell had been a mediocre judge, Hruska claimed that:

"Even if he were mediocre, there are a lot of mediocre judges and people and lawyers. They are entitled to a little representation, aren’t they, and a little chance? We can’t have all Brandeises, Frankfurters and Cardozos."[1]

This speech was criticized by many, and Carswell was eventually defeated.

Clay Aiken's GMA interview

It took me some time finally get around to seeing this interview with Diane Sawyer. It’s a really touching piece on Clay Aiken and his coming out. He says that he really came out to himself in 2003 when he was on American Idol, and that the first person he told was fellow Idol contestant Kimberley Locke. He also discusses how he came out to his family.

All I can say is it’s clear that he is a much more relaxed and confident out gay man than the tentative, evasive Clay Aiken we saw on Larry King Live avoiding the question of his orientation a while back. Good for him for opening the closet door, and good for him for doing it for his son Parker. (more…)

Hedge Funds: Is Tuesday the Beginning of the End?

No one wants to be invested in an underperforming hedge fund right now — and half of the hedge funds in America are underperforming. What happens when investors decide to take their money out tomorrow, as they’re generally allowed to do on the first day of any quarter?

Sources said they expect the body count to total as many as 2,000 hedge funds and 500 hedge funds of funds between now and the end of March…

Most hedge funds operate on an end-of-quarter deadline for requests from clients to have their money returned. If experts’ predictions of very large collective redemptions come true, managers will have to liquidate their holdings en masse, pushing down prices and forcing many smaller hedge funds or those with poor returns out of business. The wave of closures could span six months, likely beginning in earnest in November and December at the end of the typical 45- or

65-day waiting period when fund managers have to return investor cash.

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George Will: Palin's not qualified

Let’s see…how do you think the Freepi and the rest of the fringe will react to this.  (Huff Post):

Famed conservative columnist George Will told a gathering of Senate aides on Monday that Gov. Sarah Palin is “obviously” not prepared to assume the presidency if necessary, two event attendees told the Huffington Post.

Appearing at a Senate Press Secretaries Association reception at the Cornerstone Government Affairs office, Will offered a harsh assessment of John McCain’s running mate. Palin is “obviously not qualified to be President,” he remarked, describing her interview on CBS Evening News with Katie Couric as a “disaster.”

…Last week, Kathleen Parker of the National Review penned a column calling on the Alaska Governor to be dropped from the ticket. New York Times columnist David Brooks and former Bush speechwriter David Frum have also expressed their doubts about Palin’s capacity for the vice presidential post.

You can find out what the knuckledraggers think of the conservative revolt against Palin after the jump. (more…)

American News Project: Pain on Main Street

As lawmakers regroup after the $700 billion-taxpayer bailout went down in defeat, the foreclosure machine continues to crush homeowners caught in the mortgage crisis. Wall Street’s precarious balance sheet has obscured the financial tailspin on Main Street. For homeowners on the verge of foreclosure, there is no significant relief in sight. The American News Project reports on the ongoing housing crisis and its impact on the economy. 

Me fail journalism? Unpossible.

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Just a reminder that Caribou Barbie once planned on being the Lois Lane of the tundra:

HH (Hugh Hewitt): Now Governor, the Gibson and the Couric interview struck many as sort of pop quizzes designed to embarrass you as opposed to interviews. Do you share that opinion? 

SP: Well, I have a degree in journalism also, so it surprises me that so much has changed since I received my education in journalistic ethics all those years ago. But I’m not going to pick a fight with those who buy ink by the barrelful. I’m going to take those shots and those pop quizzes and just say that’s okay, those are good testing grounds. And they can continue on in that mode. That’s good. That makes somebody work even harder. It makes somebody be even clearer and more articulate in their positions. So really I don’t fight it. I invite it.

Why, yes, that couldn’t be even clearer and more articulate now, could it?

As far as Hugh Hewitt’s "interview" questions, as Andrew Sullivan points out, Hewitt had his tongue so far up Palin’s ass, he could taste the undigested moose.

Racism and Betrayal: What the Bailout Failure Taught Obama About Republicans

The last few days should have been a brutal lesson in realpolitik for Obama. He went all out to try and pass a Republican bill on the assurance from Republican leaders that they would put half their caucus behind it. While I think the bill shouldn’t have been passed, I believe that Obama thought doing so was in the country’s best interest, which is why he was willing to deal.

And how did the Republicans repay him? With betrayal and racism. First they spent the last week trying to blame the Community Reinvestment Act for causing the crisis. The not so sub-subtext? That it was forcing banks to lend to Blacks and Latinos that caused the mess. That’s a simple lie, CRA sponsored banks and lending institutions have a lower default rate than non CRA lenders, because there are more stringent conditions, but lying has never stopped Republicans from dealing in racist appeals to the worst people in America.

Then, push comes to shove time, Boehner fails to deliver. A massively unpopular bill has been defeated, and the storyline is that it’s because Republicans didn’t vote for it. Obama and the Democrats have been left swinging in the wind, trying to pass a bill the public hates with the Republicans scuttling it.

Unfortunately Obama doesn’t seem to have learned a lesson from this. He is still pushing the bill hard, a move which is likely to:

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The compromise bill was the Paulson plan

This is a reminder of what the "compromise" bill was and what leaders in Washington are trying to resurrect. It is abstracted from item 87 of my scandals list which deals with the history of the housing and financial crisis.

On Sunday September 28, 2008, Bush, the Presidential candidates, and Congressional leaders of both parties endorsed a “compromise” bailout plan (HR 3997). The bill was 110 pages long, so much longer than the original 2 page Paulson plan. But it was still the Paulson plan, just a lot of lipstick had been added. Paulson would still be able to buy, hold, and sell what he wanted (not just mortgage backed securities but any securities he wished) from whom he wanted (both American financial companies and any foreign one with “significant” US interests not owned by a foreign government). He would be the one to set up the market mechanisms (reverse auctions) to buy the finance industry’s crap assets. He would be the one to hire employees and contract companies to manage the auctions and assets, and he would be the one to write the conflict of interest rules which would govern these and ensure he (more…)