Sunday, January 31, 2010

It's time for...

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Saturday, January 30, 2010

As usual…

…a random ten.
Merle Travis - A Fool At The Steering Wheel
The Kinks - Days
Doug Sahm & the Texas Tornados - Wolverton Mountain
Red Hot Chili Peppers - Johnny Kick A Hole In The Sky
The Temptations - (I Know) I'm Losing You
Hacha - Long Wake Up
Incredible String Band - My Name Is Death
The Hollies - Blowin' In The Wind
Gini Dodds & The Dahlias - One More Day
Steeleye Span - The Cutty Wren

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She may "prefer" the GOP…

…but the GOP doesn't prefer Pammy...
OLYMPIA — State Sen. Pam Roach, R-Auburn, has been banned from the Senate Republican caucus after colleagues told her she has repeatedly mistreated staff and should get counseling to manage her anger.
Sounds like Steve Zemke got off easy.

Hat tip to Goldy.

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Friday, January 29, 2010


John Cole...
If Mike Pence really is regarded as one of the deep thinkers for the GOP, I’m beginning to understand why they refused to admit Terri Schiavo was brain-dead.
I guess they put forward McCain-Palin as their best and brightest.

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Stuff I learned...

…from President Obama's sit-down with the House Republicans.

Freshman Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) can "look you in the eye" and lie.

In their caucus, I suppose that's called leadership potential.

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Well, yeah…

…President Obama's right...
"If there's uniform opposition because the Republican caucus doesn't get 100 percent or 80 percent of what you want, then it's going to be difficult to get a deal done, because that's not how democracy works."
…but it seems pretty clear that the Republicans don't want democracy to work, because when democracy works, Republicans lose.

You want democracy to work? It's simple…

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Chart of the day.

Via Ron Chusid at Liberal Values...

We're gonna have Bush to kick around for years to come. Not much satisfaction in that, and no quick fix in sight, but there it is.

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

No reason at all…

sez Senator Pridemore.
Nine state senators are working on a proposal that would increase taxes for the state’s wealthiest individuals and corporations, similar to two measures passed this week in Oregon.

The group of lawmakers is considering higher taxes for "the people more able to pay,” says State senator Craig Pridemore (D-49). Citing the Oregon measures, he says, "there is no reason Washington cannot do the same."
Right, I mean, correct you are, Senator! I don't know exactly what they'll come up with, but it's hard to imagine anything that would correct some of the notorious regressivity of our state's tax code that I wouldn't support.

The Senator from the 33rd, Karen Keiser, is the only other name I've seen of the nine. Anybody know who else is involved in the discussions?

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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

From the "Why not Washington?" file.

Good news from the lower upper left...
Oregon voters bucked decades of anti-tax and anti-Salem sentiment Tuesday, raising taxes on corporations and the wealthy to prevent further erosion of public schools and other state services.

The tax measures passed easily, with late returns showing a 54 percent to 46 percent ratio. Measure 66 raises taxes on households with taxable income above $250,000, and Measure 67 sets higher minimum taxes on corporations and increases the tax rate on upper-level profits.
Hey, we've got rich people and corporations. We've got schools and other state services, too. And we could sure use the money.

So, why not Washington?

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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Like déjà vu all over again…

Via Dave Johnson...
Republican Operatives Caught Bugging Dem Senator's Phones
I guess "filmmakers" are the new "plumbers."

Crooks and liars, the lot of 'em, either way.

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From the "Me neither" file.

Vice President Biden
"Yes it's had a practical impact, but I'm not so sure what a blessing 60 votes was."
Me neither. When we had 60, that is, which wasn't all that often or none of those filibusters would have mattered. 51 isn't always easy with this caucus. Sometimes the big tent sucks, but that's who we are.

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Good question…

From Bob Herbert.
How can you look out for the interests of working people with Tim Geithner whispering in one ear and Larry Summers in the other?
I'm stumped. How?

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Worth repeating.

Nick Beaudrot on the media's normalization of the Senate supermajority roadblock...
...while treaties need 67 votes to pass, nothing needs 60 votes to pass; that requirement is a choice made by current members of the Senate.
I'll bet somebody you know - bunch of folks, probably - thinks the filibuster is in the Constitution.

It ain't.

Spread the word.

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Monday, January 25, 2010

Duh headline of the day.

The WaPo yields the winning entry...
2009 Democratic agenda severely weakened by Republicans' united opposition
Duh. It took until 2010 to notice this? It was the only meaningful story in Washington, D.C., last year, really.

Though Democratic divided support wasn't particularly helpful, either...

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Sunday, January 24, 2010

It's time for...

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Saturday, January 23, 2010

Words to live by.

From David Plouffe, via Greg Sargent...
"No bed-wetting."
No sniveling, either. There's work to do.

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Report from Olympia…

…via Steve Zemke, who was down testifying on behalf of initiative reform when... Senator Roach's opinion I had impugned the motives of Tim Eyman by noting that he ballot title shopped his initiatives. She started ranting that I should cease testifying and be removed from the hearing. Senator Darlene Fairley, the Chair of the Committee basically ignored her and allowed the Hearing to continue.
That's my own personal State Senator ignoring Pam Roach's tantrum. Kudos from this constituent!

And what's up with that tantrum, anyway? Even if Steve had conquered the Herculean challenge of impugning Eyman's motives, how does that justify denying a citizen his Constitutional right to petition his government? That's what testifying before the Legislature, is, after all, in one of it's purest and most direct manifestations.

Reminds me of this from Hollywood Jane's new boyfriend...
"Bipartisanship is another name for date rape," Grover Norquist has told the Denver Post. "We are trying to change the tones in the state capitals – and turn them toward bitter nastiness and partisanship."
I guess Pammy's on the team.

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A little bit of this...

...and a fair bit of that. This week's random ten...
Joni Mitchell - Cold Blue Steel And Sweet Fire
Neil Young - Buffalo Springfield Again
Nico - Afraid
Ike Turner - Down And Out
Mississippi John Hurt - Got The Blues (Can't Be Satisfied)
Gram Parsons - Love Hurts
The Gosdin Brothers - Tell Me
Merle Travis - Honey Bunch
Tolo Marton - I'm Going Home
The White Brothers - Soldier's Joy

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Friday, January 22, 2010

About the only "miracle" I can find…

…surrounding the Massachusetts election outcome is the miraculous way that the results have become proof positive of the truth of virtually every possible position adopted by every available faction on nearly any conceivable issue.

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Thursday, January 21, 2010

From the "Seems to me…." file.

A lot's been said lately about honoring the memory and legacy of Senator Kennedy. Seems to me the best way to do that now would be for the House to suck it up and pass Senate bill .

It's just a step, but a step beats a stumble. We're going to end up fixing the damn thing every year for years to come, anyway. You've gotta start somewhere.

When the Speaker says she hasn't got the votes "at this time," she could be saying "get me the votes." I'd like to think so, anyway. It's time to call your Democratic Member of Congress and tell them to get the one thing done that we know we can do.

Ordinarily I'd trust my own personal Congressman to do the right thing on health care issues, but I'm sure there are elements of the Senate bill that give Jim McDermott cause - arguably good cause - for pause, so I'll be calling his office to encourage him to secure what will be a hard earned, if not difinitive, in a battle that has very much been the cause of his life as much as it was of Kennedy's.

Call and encourage your Congressmember to declare victory, too.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

So what happened?

Nobody knows. Everyone has an opinion. Here's mine.

It was (mostly) about Coakley and a notably awful campaign, both strategically and in execution. Had this been a regular election, with the Democratic machine geared up on behalf of legislators, Congress members, some statewide races and maybe a President, the kind of complacency demonstrated by the Coakley campaign wouldn't have been as critical. This time, Martha Coakley was the whole show, and she didn't show for much of the performance. When she did show, she missed cues, blew lines and dissed the audience. Not too suprising, then, that much of the formidable Democratic ground machine in the state sat much of the campaign out.

Special elections are, well, special. Compressed schedules and reduced electorates are among the defining characteristics that make them so. When the whole affair, from primary to general, takes place between Thanksgiving and MLK Day, and election day comes hard on the heels of a three day weekend

Tom Jensen Public Policy Polling claims that the result was "…a repudiation of Barack Obama" based largely on his firm finding that Obama's approval rating was only 44% among ",,.the electorate for today's contest," (actualy PPP's model of the electorate) a notable drop from Obama's result in '08. One problem with that analysis is that the electorate yesterday was, predictably, much smaller and composed much differently from the election of '08. A common feature of special elections is an elevated Republican turnout. It's a matter of demography. Republicans skew older, richer and whiter than Democrats, and older, richer, whiter folks vote in greater numbers than younger, poorer and, um, more colorful folks. That's true in high turnout elections, too, but the effect is amplified when over a half a million voters go missing.

Looking at the actual results, you could say that Brown got all of the McCain votes and Coakley could only gin up 60% of the Obama votes. I'm sure there were a few folks who, having voted for a Democratic President, Member of Congress, Governor, etc., etc. just 14 months ago have now decided that the Republicans have the right idea. Very few. No more, I'd imagine, than the number who stayed home because they thought that at then end of the day, the D was a lock. No more, either, than the number who stayed home simply because the Coakley campaign just never got around to their porch to ask for their vote. As Tip O'Neill would often remind young pols, people like to be asked.

The notion that this was a repudiation of Obama, or of liberal governance in general, is also given lie by PPP's finding that "Among voters who thought that Scott Brown was either a liberal or a moderate, he won 79-18. Among voters who thought that he was a conservative Coakley won 63-32." This looks to me like another mark against the Coakley campaign, whose critique of Brown came too little, too late and not too competently.

Neither, it appears, was the election a repudiation of federal health care legislation. While health care isn't the kind of pressing issue in Massachusetts, which has it's own universal coverage program, that it is elsewhere, Think Progress reports that "Forty-six (46%) of voters said their vote was mainly to show support for health care reform rather than to show opposition to it (35%)." Given the overall conservative bent of the special election voters, that's about as close to a ringing endorsement for passing health care reform as you could hope for.

Nate Silver looked at the 31 point swing between the '08 outcome and yesterday's and estimated that it could be distributed between the national political environment, the Coakley campaign and "special circumstances" including a predicatably low turnout, compressed calendar, etc., splitting it 13, 14 and 4 points, respectively. I think he dramatically overstates the national influence and gives far too little credit to those special circumstances. He probably gives Coakley incompetence the short shrift, too. In fact, one of the main errors of the Coakley campaign was to under-rate those special circumstances and to over-rate their candidate's appeal at the top of the truncated ballot. I'd put the split closer to 15 points lost because of Coakley, 15 because of the circumstances of the special election (though the Coakley campaign's failure to recognize those circumstances may make that more like a 20-10 split) and maybe one logged against the national political mood.

Finally, while it seems that all of the criticism I've seen of the Coakley campaign is well justified, there's also too little credit given to Brown, who is a personable guy who ran an aggressive shoe leather (or truck tire, if you will) campaign. While Coakley was apparently spending vacation days highlighting favorite passages from the "You can't lose" memo someone must have slipped her, Brown apparently never received, certainly never read, its "You can't win" counterpart. Coakley didn't just lose - she got beat.

So my final take? A bad candidate ran an awful campaign and got beat by a personally, if not ideologically, appealing opponent who worked like he planned to win. There are certainly lessons to be learned, but many of them aren't directly transferable to a regular general election and while there are going to be significant legislative repercussions over the next couple of years as a result, there are few if any broad or long term political implications.

That's what I think.

But no one knows.

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From the "Since you asked..." file.

Chris Grygiel at Strange Bedfellows wonders...
Does Mass. upset spell trouble for Patty Murray?
Since you asked, no.

Not even a maybe? Well, should the Republicans come up with a personable and photogenic candidate who's got some exposure and experience but little enough to successfully obscure his positions on a few key issues, and Patty decided to take a few months off so that the entire campaign was compressed into a few weeks, and our state enacted legislation that would make the spotlight issue of the last year's legislative efforts in DC largely irrelevant to their lives, and after returning from her election vacation Patty openly dismissed the value of voter outreach, then yeah, maybe there could be trouble that was somehow related to the vote in Massachusetts yesterday.

In other words, no.

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Headline of the day.

The Village Voice takes the prize...
Scott Brown Wins Mass. Race, Giving GOP 41-59 Majority in the Senate
Hat tip to DougJ at Balloon Juice.

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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Sometimes the truth…

…isn't so family friendly. Col. Lang...
The US military has convinced itself that bullshit and bullets are equally potent.
Just another of the things I hate about what they've done to my Army.

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Chart of the day.

Via Jim Hull at Redneck Liberal

It isn't getting better. It needs to.

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Monday, January 18, 2010

Happy MLK Day!

It's suggested that the best way to observe the holiday is to perform some act of service in honor of the man and his mission. Since it's not a holiday for me, I'll be serving food and beverage at the perfect tavern. Double shift. C'mon down if you're off and nearby.

If you're in Massachusetts, do your service tomorrow by voting for the preservation of the Democratic agenda, whether or not you have reservations about the candidate that agenda is vested in.

See ya' later...

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Good question…

…from Scott Nance.
If, through intentional inaction on the Left, Democrats across the board go down to defeat, just who really would be punished?
Me. Probably you. Certainly not the banksters and bigots.

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Sunday, January 17, 2010

Words to live by…

…from Foiled Goil.
If you haven't got charity in your heart, you have the worst kind of heart trouble.
You're probably a Republican, too, which is the worst kind of head trouble.

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It's time for...

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Saturday, January 16, 2010


…it's random, alright. Ten for today...
Hank Williams III - Thrown Out Of Every Bar In Town
Spottiswoode & His Enemies - I'm In Love With An Angry Girl
Allman Brothers Band - Good Time Feeling
Bob Dylan - Red River Shore
Handful Of Lovin' - Margaritas
Johnny Cash - Country Boy
Funkadelic - One Nation Under A Groove
The Gosdin Brothers - Bowling Green
Woody Guthrie - Ramblin' Blues
Bo Diddley - I'm A Man

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Friday, January 15, 2010

Believe it or don't...

…but I've been wrong about elections before. I'm guessing Barry wouldn't be Massachusetts-bound if he didn't think his help was needed, though I don't think he'd go if he didn't think his help would matter, either.

Unless you're a lot busier than the President these days, you should help, too. OFA's got the way if you've got the will.

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Quote of the day.

"We want to lead the state out of recession. They want to lead the state out of the country."

House Speaker Pro Tem Jeff Morris on the rash of 'sovereignty' bills introduced by Republicans in Olympia.
The Tea Party inspired dime store secessionists include House Minority Caucus Chairman Dan Kristiansen, Assistant Minority Floor Leader Charles Ross and Deputy Minority Leader Joel Kretz.

Why do Republicans hate America?

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Thursday, January 14, 2010

An invitation…

…from the Save The Woodland Park Nocturnal House Facebook group.

Please take some time on Monday to contact the Zoo, the Seattle City Council(with Sally Bagshaw who chairs the Parks committee as the key person), and anyone else you think can help!

Contact info for the City:

Contact info for the Zoo:

Please emphasize that they need to give us a chance to save this exhibit and that we want to work with them to both save it for the near term and also work for a long term solution to make the exhibit more energy efficient and sustainable.
There's some fatalism to some of the comments there that makes me wonder if whatever is done is going to be too little, too late, but it's worth doing whatever you can to save this unique, entertaining and educational habitat. Take a few minutes on Monday to help save the night.

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RE: Massachusetts

Tbogg explains it all...
Scott Brown was born a poor black child. But without the Negro dialect. Which is why he is competitive.
Apparently competitive, at any rate, but appearances can deceive. In my experience, when the story is "Candidate X appears suprisingly close, an upset may be at hand," the only thing usually in Candidate X's hand when the votes are counted is his or her hat.

This is exactly the kind of election that is played out at the very end when the respective party machines tune up their GOTV machines. Big endorsements are brought out, ads are run, calls are made and doorbells are rung and underdogs get plowed under. Not always, but often enough that it should be conventional wisdom.

I'm guessing Coakley by 8-10 points when it's all done. I'm sure that someone somewhere will call that a moral victory for Brown and bad news for Obama.

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My peeps!

Via Strange Bedfellows
A KING5/SurveyUSA poll found that 56 percent of respondents thought legalization was a good idea.
Time to make the upper left the higher left?

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Wednesday, January 13, 2010


These folks are helping, as are many others. Of course, they need your help to help. If you can, please do.

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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Makes you wonder….

…why this hasn't been the policy all along. Via Matt Yglesias...
The FDIC, which collects fees from all banks to repay depositors in failed banks, is considering a plan to impose higher fees on banks with compensation practices that the agency regards as encouraging reckless pursuit of short-term profits without sufficient regard for the risk of long-term losses.
Habitually reckless drivers pay higher rates for auto insurance. Similarly, risky hobbies or reckless habits can increase your life insurance costs. Why in the word wouldn't reckless bank practices make coverage by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation more expensive?

Do it.

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From the "Reports of our death…" file.

President McCain isn't going to like this. CNN poll via The Plum Line...
Please tell me whether you agree or disagree that Barack Obama has the personality and leadership qualities a President should have.
Agree 64%
Disagree 35%
This likely won't cheer him up, either...
New CBS News poll finds 57% approve of Obama’s handling of the foiled Christmas Day plot; 52% approve of his overall handling of terror. That’s after yesterday’s CNN poll with similar results.
This Obama guy seems very popular. Maybe he should run for office.

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Monday, January 11, 2010

One of these things is just like the other?

Not hardly. Joan Walsh in Salon...
One guy is talking, perhaps inelegantly, about why he's wholeheartedly supporting our first black president; the other is wishing the country had elected a racist. That's exactly the same thing!
It's hard to believe we're still talking about this, but I've noticed some commentary from folks I assumed would know better buying into the notion that what Harry Reid said was a racist comment because he used an antiquated word. On closer examination, there seems to be something of a generational divide. Being an antique myself, I remember the word from its time of common usage, and it was not one of the many words that actual racists used to the folks who now prefer black, African-American or Afro-American. A lot of folks a couple decades younger than I am have only been exposed to the word in a historical sense, and it hearkens back to a time less enlightened in many respects, perhaps giving it a negative associations.

I'm from the "call people what they want to be called" school myself, but Senator Reid didn't call anyone anything. He used a term that's generally obsolete among folks under, say, 50, to refer to a characteristic dialect. The fact that the term isn't completely obsolete is demonstrated best by its continued descriptive value. While most of us wouldn't say it exactly the same way, everyone understood what Reid said, and every honest observer would agree that his usage and intent was completely non-racist.

Not only non-racist, but not "offensive," either. Words can't be offensive unless there is an offended target, and Harry and Barry are cool.

It's another ginned up Republican controversy, another fogbank to disguise the actual racists and racism they not only tolerate, but cultivate. Don't fall for it.

Hat tip to jnfr.

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Sunday, January 10, 2010

In an uncertain world…

,,,it's always reassuring to notice the things that never change. Hat tip to Paul Constant for this consoling news...
At Revolution Books, Bob Avakian will give the first part of a two-part lecture about how we are on the verge of a revolution.
Ah, good ol' Chairman Bob. Takes me back to those glorious battles between the RCP and the Trots that seemed to erupt at every vaguely leftist event back in the day. Can't remember who won. Whoever wins the revolution and writes the history, I suppose.

When it gets here.

I quit waiting thirty some years ago.

Nice to hear we're still on the verge, though.

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Map of the day.

Via Juan Cole...

We've got a lot of work to do on the change front, but that's what hope looks like.

And I've got a hunch our the kids are blue here in the upper left, too. Anybody got numbers?

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Pretty much. Gordon's got a few years on me, but I'm geezer enough to feel mostly the same way, I guess...
'Negro' is now considered by some to be an ethnic or racial slur. Not by me. I see it as archaic, but I see nothing wrong with it, though I don't use it much anymore.
Context and intent matter here, just as they do when black folk I know use the word sarcastically, with an exaggerated first syllable, or institutionally, as in the United Negro College Fund. More than a few older black folk use it formally and proudly, remembering a day when to be called a Negro was a victory in a hard fight against the denigration of real hate language, just as many of their parents saw "colored" as a step forward, and their children demanded to be called black.

Besides, if Barry's over it, we can all get over it.

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It's time for...

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Saturday, January 09, 2010


AP - Maybe the award should be renamed Most Valuable Peyton.
Manning got me to, but not through, the finals of my fantasy league this year. I wish him better luck in real life. In an era of noteworthy quarterbacks, he's a marvel.

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Dubious distinction?

Sure, but, hey, we're #1! Via Slog (my emphasis)...
Horizon Bank of Bellingham, the 12th-largest bank in this state, has failed, and will cost the FDIC an estimated $539 million. It's also the first U.S. bank failure of 2010.
If it weren't for the honor of the thing...

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Not for those of tender sensibility, perhaps….

but driftglass takes down the Sunday morning media circus as only driftglass can.

My fave from a noteworthy portfolio...

You can click it a bit bigger, but drifty's got a geenourmous copy.

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Got random if you want it.

Or if you don't, for that matter. 10 from the hard drive...
Bonnie Raitt - That Song About The Midway
Belle & Sebastian - Step Into My Office, Baby
Uncle Tupelo - Coalminers
Lou Reed - Legendary Hearts
Bob Dylan - Don't Think Twice, It's Alright
Hoyt Axton - Legend Of John Henry
Lead Belly - A Lesson In History
Tom Waits - A Sight For Sore Eyes
Elliott Smith - High Times
The Carter Family - I Ain't Gonna Work Tomorrow

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Friday, January 08, 2010

A timely reminder…

…from Shoreline Area News.
Monday, January 11 is the deadline for registering to vote online or by mail for the February 9 special election. It also is the deadline for registered Washington voters to change their registration addresses.
Here in Shoreline there are three school funding measures on the ballot, along with a county-wide library levy. Your ballot may look different from mine, depending on your locality, but there will be something important on it no matter where you are.

Remember, you can't remember to vote if you don't remember to register.

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From the "Since you asked…" file.

Brad Delong inquires...
Can you say: "jobless recovery"?
Since you asked, sure. I can also say "magic unicorn" and "honest Republican." Doesn't mean there's any such a thing.

If it's jobless, it isn't a recovery.

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Thursday, January 07, 2010

Fun Facts.

Via Eli Sanders at Slog...
Barack Obama's approval rating with Connecticut Republicans is higher than Lieberman's with the state's Democrats.

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Wednesday, January 06, 2010

From the "Reports of our death…" file.

A couple of good questions from Steve Benen...
In the House, 14 GOP incumbents have decided not to seek re-election, while 10 Democratic incumbents have made the same announcement. Does this mean Republicans are "dropping like flies"?

In the Senate, six Republican incumbents have decided not to seek re-election, while two Democratic incumbents have made the same announcement. Is this evidence of a mass Democratic exodus?
We're not dead yet, so don't mourn, organize.

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From the "Credit where it's due" file.

Yeah, yeah, stopped clocks twice a day and all that, but when he's right, he's right, even when the he in question is John McCain...
During a visit to Iraq, Republican Senator John McCain called on the US Justice Department to appeal the dismissal of all charges against the five Blackwater operatives accused of being the shooters at the Nisour Square massacre in Baghdad in 2007.
File an appeal and find a path to prosecution that hasn't been poisoned by the Bushco™ Justice Department's pattern of prosecutorial misconduct that has proven suspiciously helpful to their allies in the criminal class.

Then put an end to the unconscionable use of these mercenary cowboys and crusaders once and for all.

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Most Valuable Senator...

Maria Cantwell

So says The Nation's John Nichols, who writes...
The American Prospect's Robert Kuttner calls Cantwell "the best informed and most relentless crusader" for reform of the financial system. Former Commodity Futures Trading Commission official Michael Greenberger says she is "going for the jugular" in her fight to end abuses that could cause a new financial crisis. They're both right.
Nichol's pick is right, too. I couldn't be more pleased to see Maria get this kind of well-earned recognition, and I couldn't agree more, either.

Congratulations, Senator!

Congrats, too, to Nichols' choice for Most Valuable Representative, Peter DeFazio from the lower upper left.

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Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Words to live by.

Politics is an adversarial process. Deal with it.

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From the "Reports of our death…" file.

Chris Cillizza looks at some actual names and numbers and finds that, actually... of a doomsday scenario for House Democrats simply hasn't materialized yet. Are they likely headed to double-digit losses come November? Yes. But, talk of a switch in House control is, at least at this point, premature.
The actual names and numbers...
Republican Open Seats (14)

Delaware's at-large (Obama 62 percent)
California's 19th (McCain 52 percent)
Florida's 12th (McCain 50 percent)
Georgia's 9th (McCain 75 percent)
Illinois' 10th (Obama 61 percent)
Kansas' 1st (McCain 69 percent)
Kansas' 4th (McCain 58 percent)
Michigan's 2nd (McCain 51 percent)
Missouri's 7th (McCain 63 percent)
Oklahoma's 5th (McCain 59 percent)
Pennsylvania's 6th (Obama 58 percent)
South Carolina's 1st (McCain 56 percent)
South Carolina's 3rd (McCain 64 percent)
Tennessee's 3rd (McCain 62 percent)

Democratic Open Seats (10)

Alabama's 7th (Obama 74 percent)
Florida's 17th (Obama 87 percent)
Hawaii's 1st (Obama 70 percent)
Kansas' 3rd (Obama 51 percent)
Louisiana's 3rd (McCain 61 percent)
New Hampshire's 2nd (Obama 56 percent)
Pennsylvania's 7th (Obama 56 percent)
Tennessee's 6th (McCain 62 percent)
Tennessee's 8th (McCain 56 percent)
Washington's 3rd (Obama 53 percent)
Hard to find the good news for President McCain's party in there.

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Monday, January 04, 2010

Good question…

…from the good Roger Ailes.
So when does Brit Hume advise Charles Krauthammer that if he accepts Jesus as his personal Saviour he will walk again?

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Sunday, January 03, 2010

Chart of the day.

Via the New York Times.

Click it bigger - it's worth it.

Pretty much what I remember from a decade I'd like to forget.

Hat tip to Joe Taxpayer.

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Shout outs…

…to friends in the local blogosphere. Today marks seven years for N in Seattle's Peace Tree Farm. He may not be the most prolific blogger around (though he compensates by being a thoughtful and reliable commenter here and elsewhere), but when he has something to say, it's always worth reading. Seven years is an achievement worthy of note, too. Congrats!

Janet Way's Of Paramount Importance is named in honor of her Paramount Park neighborhood here in Shoreline, but it also fits her focus on local conservation, preservation and restoration. Janet's term on the Shoreline City Council wasn't without controversy, which she suggests may be due to her having the heart of an activist which often led her astray from the safe go along to get along path. Even the harshest critics of her council service, though, would be hard pressed to question her passion for the local environment, both physical and cultural. I expect to learn a lot from Janet's new blog, and I expect you will too, no matter how distant from Shoreline, WA you may be. Welcome to the online neighborhood!

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I'll take "All of the above" for 1000, Alex.

Think Progress headline…
Brennan responds to Cheney: He's either ‘willfully mischaracterized’ Obama or is ‘ignorant of the facts.’
Why choose?

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It's time for...

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Saturday, January 02, 2010

Random Reload

Whole lotta new stuff in the mix…
Champion Jack Dupree - Junker's Blues
The Carolina Tar Heels - My Home's Across The Blueridge Mountains
The Kinks - Big Black Smoke
Hot Tuna - Bank Robber
Mississippi John Hurt - Blue Harvest Blues
Sir Douglas Quintet - Dallas Alice
The Carter Family - Anchored In Love
Solomon Burke - If You Need Me
Shawn Colvin - Looking For The Heart Of Saturday Night
Cat Power - Aretha, Sing One For Me

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Friday, January 01, 2010

From the "Reason for the season" file.

As a Real American™, I've been monitoring the New Year's Day bowl games, and there have been some good ones so far. Northwestern put a real scare into Auburn in an overtime contest, but why, I'm forced to wonder, are two unranked teams playing on this college football day of days?

Congratulations are due to Bobby Bowden, whose Florida State Seminoles came through with a farewell win for their retiring head coach. Joe Paterno's Penn State Nittany Lions came through for their grand old man, too, but Joe Pa doesn't seem to be going anywhere.

And now the quandry. Come bowl season, I'm typically a loyal son of the PAC 10, and that's particularly true come Rose Bowl time. But the Ducks? I'm supposed to root for the Ducks? That's a stretch.

On the other hand, they're playing Ohio State. If it could only be Michigan.

Ducks or Bucks? What to do?

Quack, I guess. Bring on the Sugar Bowl.

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"Quite a few questions"…

…from Noam Chomsky, via Digby.
“Dismantling of big government” sounds like a nice phrase. What does it mean? Does it mean that corporations go out of existence, because there will no longer be any guarantee of limited liability? Does it mean that all health, safety, workers rights, etc., go out the window because they were instituted by public pressures implemented through government, the only component of the governing system that is at least to some extent accountable to the public (corporations are unaccountable, apart from generally weak regulatory apparatus)? Does it mean that the economy should collapse, because basic R&D is typically publicly funded — like what we’re now using, computers and the internet? Should we eliminate roads, schools, public transportation, environmental regulation,….? Does it mean that we should be ruled by private tyrannies with no accountability to the general public, while all democratic forms are tossed out the window? Quite a few questions arise.
The dreamland dimension of Randian/Paulite radicalism always brings this classic to mind…

The Republicans have nothing, the right-wing libertarians have miracles.

And they call liberals starry-eyed.

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Duh Headline of the Day.

From the NYT...
Iraqis Angered as Blackwater Charges Are Dropped

Some Americans - or should I say real Americans - too.

Banning the use of mercenary armies belongs on the national resolution list.

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