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Iran votes: Not a pretty sight
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Page 6: Politix
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-Lurid Crime Tales-
Kass: Daley and the Chumbolone Flu
Note the reference to Allison Davis.
Learned professors from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are probably skedaddling to Chicago -- equipped with cool scientific stuff like Bunsen burners, beakers and smoking dry ice -- now that Mayor Richard Daley has emerged from his sickbed with the flu.

After watching Daley insist that he didn't know until it was too late that his nephew Robert Vanecko received almost $70 million in city pension fund money to invest, I've formed my own amateur diagnosis.

The Boss of Chicago, our beloved King Shortshanks, must be in the grip of a virus so rare it has only now been discovered. Technically, let's call it the B1-S1 virus, or B-S for short.

But my colleague Wings has just given it a fancy Latin name: Chumbolonius verbalis fibbus, or, more commonly, the Chumbolone Flu.

The Chumbolone Flu shall be known by this defining sign: The afflicted suffers from the delusion that everyone around him is a chumbolone who believes what he's told.

Another symptom of the Chumbolone Flu is that the victim is often compelled to read a statement that was obviously drafted by lawyers, then almost whispers in a quiet voice: My statement speaks for itself.

"First of all, while many of you have speculated that somehow I knew about Bob's [his nephew's] business relationship, I did not," Daley said, reading from a statement. "I found out about it the same way most people did, in news, when the story broke. When I did find out, I made it very clear it was not a good decision and that he should end the business relationship immediately."

Those of you who have been paying attention know that Vanecko resigned this week from DV Urban Realty, the company he formed with Allison Davis (President Barack Obama's first law firm boss) to invest the city pension funds.

And federal authorities are investigating how those deals for Daley's nephew and Davis were approved, and by whom and why.

Only a chumbolone would believe that the pension board members wouldn't run to the mayor like little eager puppies, to tell him that his nephew was sniffing around for $70 million.

And only a chumbolone would believe that the pension board members would go out of their way to defy the mayor and give his nephew the money to invest, if they thought Daley might be the least bit opposed.

See how the B1-S1 virus works?

"Everyone knows that perception is everything," the mayor read. "Perception is. And Bob's decision very clearly led to the perception that rules are broken or preferential treatment [was] given. It is a perception that follows almost every business transaction involving any Daley family member or any aspect of local government or any other government."

Translation: Any time a Daley does something involving $70 million and a government controlled by the mayor, people have this weird propensity to think the boss might know what's going on.

Oh, the heartbreak of the Chumbolone Flu.

While some broadcast reporters tried to change the subject, stubborn print reporters valiantly attempted to focus on what he knew and when. Tribune City Hall reporter Dan Mihalopoulos asked the best question:

Mayor, you have representatives on the city pension boards. Did you talk with them about DV Urban?

"No, no," Daley said, but he added that the city treasurer and the Daley administration's chief financial officer are, by statute, appointed to the boards that decide how to invest the pension funds for city workers.

Clearly, Daley expects us to believe that people who owe their livelihood to Daley would never bother to say, 'Hey, Your Highness, what's up with your nephew Bobby asking for all that cash? Should we give it to him?' "

Fran Spielman of the Sun-Times asked what he'd tell folks who don't believe him.

"Fran, things happen in families. That's it," said Daley, perpetuating the Sun-Times spin that the nephew can defy the mayor and still receive millions to invest. "That's all I have to say."

Then, with the stern voice of a strict nurse protecting a beloved patient, Daley's press secretary, Jacquelyn Heard, interrupted, saying, "Are there questions on any other topics? Otherwise, we're going to end the press conference."

So I asked: You're not going to answer questions about your nephew?

He clenched his teeth but bravely repressed his inner Mayor Chucky, though he probably wanted to unleash Chucky on me.

"I answered questions," Daley said. "The statement speaks for itself."

And he looked around, as if we believed him, the poor guy.

Those learned scientists from the CDC can't get here fast enough. Hurry, boys! Don't forget the white lab coats.

O Chumbolonius verbalis fibbus, please release the proud mayor of Chicago from your evil grasp.
Posted by: mom || 06/12/2009 09:12 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6468 views] Top|| File under:

-Short Attention Span Theater-
A First Lady badly dressed makes me emotional.
Well, my little dog fido wants his sweater back, Michelle.
Link fixed. Make sure you put it in the source box when you post. AoS.
Posted by: GirlThursday || 06/12/2009 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6467 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Wait'll she rides out on her motor psycho...
Posted by: M. Murcek || 06/12/2009 0:19 Comments || Top||

#2  Yes, her cardigans (she wore TWO. AT THE SAME TIME. The other day in London) are getting annoying, as are the belts she always wears at her waist.

But at least she takes time to give to others.
Posted by: Seafarious || 06/12/2009 0:29 Comments || Top||

#3  Foobarred that one, thanks.
Posted by: GirlThursday || 06/12/2009 0:54 Comments || Top||

#4  The First Lady dresses like her job isn't one, but rather a family weekend. The poor dear simply doesn't understand what her husband got her into.
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/12/2009 0:55 Comments || Top||

#5  Just wants her affirmative action do nothing political patronage job at the Chicago U hospital back.
Posted by: M. Murcek || 06/12/2009 1:07 Comments || Top||

#6  She could be a new bad guy in the WWE.
Posted by: Ebbusolet Forkbeard9922 || 06/12/2009 1:36 Comments || Top||

#7  Mrs. Bobby sez the 'layered look' is in, TW. But I think that's too many layers.
Posted by: Bobby || 06/12/2009 6:18 Comments || Top||

#8  Mrs. Bobby is right, Bobby. But for daytime the First Lady should dress like a feminine version of a corporate vice president, ie like Princess Di or Jackie Kennedy. That is, skirt or pants suits in feminine colours and stylish designs, or dresses with jackets...ie, a non-power suit to differentiate herself from the working women who surround her. Sweater sets, especially the kind of mixed pieces that Mrs. Obama favours, are appropriate for taking the girls to school, curled up with the family watching television, or visiting friends on the weekend, but not when making a speech intended to persuade. Being First Lady is as much of a real job as the one she was paid to do not so long ago, back in Chicago, not some sort of glorified stay-at-home mom thingy. It just doesn't come with a paycheck.

I realize this would entail buying an entirely new wardrobe, as I assume Mrs. Obama's work wardrobe contained mostly power suits, but that's the cost of making the kind of radical career change she chose. Surely the Democratic Party or private donors would be as willing to underwrite the cost as the Republican Party was willing to invest in appropriate campaign clothing for their vice presidential candidate... or various private donors have been willing to underwrite the cost of a new set of White House china over the years.
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/12/2009 7:00 Comments || Top||

#9  Heh heh heh...
Posted by: Parabellum || 06/12/2009 8:09 Comments || Top||

#10  as are the belts she always wears at her waist.

Side side profile hints at the need for WBF Championship belts.
Posted by: ed || 06/12/2009 12:24 Comments || Top||

#11  I suggest we all keep our mouths shut before we end up with a personal staff of "fashion consultants" for her that costs us another coupla million bucks.
Posted by: tu3031 || 06/12/2009 12:35 Comments || Top||

#12  Nah, tu, we just do a write in campaign with Stacy and Clinton at What Not to Wear for the First Lady. They underwrite, get ratings, we save on the cost. Heck, they might even raise the tab to 10K for the episode.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 06/12/2009 13:30 Comments || Top||

#13  Beats pantsuit crazy.
Posted by: JohnQC || 06/12/2009 17:31 Comments || Top||

#14  What the well dressed Klingon is wearing these days.
Posted by: AlmostAnonymous5839 || 06/12/2009 17:46 Comments || Top||

#15  Can't hide a giant can and a walk like a T-Rex.
Posted by: Frank G || 06/12/2009 20:33 Comments || Top||

-Signs, Portents, and the Weather-
So your bank account's wiped out
The "upside" of an EMP, which is, for some reason, a topic I can't get off my mind of late...

Or to extend the old saw: if you owe the bank a thousand dollars, you have a problem. If you owe the bank a million dollars, the bank has a problem. If everyone owes a million dollars, civilizational survival has a problem. When I first heard about EMP a few years back, the big worry was that in a split-second it would vaporize trillions of dollars of wealth. From the perspective of 2009, vaporizing trillions of dollars of debt has something to commend it.
Posted by: Uncle Phester || 06/12/2009 08:12 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6471 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Don't give Obama any ideas, now....
Posted by: Cornsilk Blondie || 06/12/2009 8:38 Comments || Top||

#2  Instant equality - the nirvana of the ivory tower Marxist Socialist. However, like the Big Bang, the basic elements of social order will eventually coalesce around 'natural' order in a Medieval sort of way which means the special interest groups and large segments of particularly blue urban society will find out what the bottom of the pile really looks like.
Posted by: Procopious2k || 06/12/2009 8:50 Comments || Top||

#3  A lot of folks in the 'burg would end up on top if an EMP eliminated everything it could eliminate. Firearms and horses aren't affected.
Posted by: Glenmore || 06/12/2009 9:00 Comments || Top||

#4  Yup, my life is gonna be a lot easier after the asteroid, or would, if I could ever get that survival shelter dug.

Some days leasing an upstairs apartment gets to be a bit of a drag.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 06/12/2009 9:45 Comments || Top||

#5  You know, the way some 3rd world countries eliminate their debt is thru regime change. The new boss simply repudiates the debt. Other than devaluing the currency to Zimbabwe standards it's unclear how we're going to get out from under the debt load that's increasing daily . . .
Posted by: Beldar Gleresing4009 || 06/12/2009 9:50 Comments || Top||

#6  regime change, elect Fred!
Posted by: 746 || 06/12/2009 10:19 Comments || Top||

#7  sorry, Frank G , not Fred my bad
Posted by: 746 || 06/12/2009 10:21 Comments || Top||

#8  ...large segments of particularly blue urban society will find out what the bottom of the pile really looks like.

Not that there is anything wrong with that.
Posted by: Caesar Ulereng3236 || 06/12/2009 12:58 Comments || Top||

#9  Some days leasing an upstairs apartment gets to be a bit of a drag.

Yup, very hard to drop an extension cord out to power up an electric car when there's no way to park close, my "Back Yard" is rough overgrown lot-for-sale.

I own ten acres free and clear, some big shit happens and it's time to fill the truck with all survival junk and flee 3 miles to my land.

(Wife wants to get rid of the most usefull (Disastermobile" I own, another story.)
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 06/12/2009 15:34 Comments || Top||

#10  Redneck Jim, get rid of the wife. The car's not as noisy or smelly.    ;-)
Posted by: AlmostAnonymous5839 || 06/12/2009 17:41 Comments || Top||

#11  #7sorry, Frank G , not Fred my bad
Posted by: 746 2009-06-12 10:21
#6 regime change, elect Fred!
Posted by: 746 2009-06-12 10:19

when I become king, it won't be by election, as I have no intention of campaigning - I'm too honest and too much of a snarky asshole to get elected. However, those who support me would be spared (life, not the snark)
Posted by: Frank G || 06/12/2009 20:35 Comments || Top||

#12  ...Actually, Tom Clancy popped off a similar idea in Executive Orders - a virus wipes out (IIRC)two days of trading on the NYSE, and of course panic erupts because no one knows what went where because nobody uses paper trails any more. One of the characters solves the problem by pointing out that since there's no record of the transactions, legally they never happened - so just do them over. After some relatively minor hiccups, trading starts over again and all's well.

Now, wouldn't an EMP strike be an interesting way to erase a multi-trillion dollar whoopsie...?

Posted by: Mike Kozlowski || 06/12/2009 21:17 Comments || Top||

#13  That EMP attack is called hyperinflation.
Works like a charm, too.

Not too bad if you have a house, farmland, ammo and gold
Posted by: European Conservative || 06/12/2009 21:30 Comments || Top||

#14  Now, wouldn't an EMP strike be an interesting way to erase a multi-trillion dollar whoopsie...?

wish we could've had one last November....
Posted by: Frank G || 06/12/2009 21:49 Comments || Top||

Caucasus/Russia/Central Asia
Russians Outfox U.S. in Latest Great Game
Via InstaPundit
Posted by: ed || 06/12/2009 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6477 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Gunna take 'eir baw, an' play onna other sida th' street...
Posted by: M. Murcek || 06/12/2009 0:17 Comments || Top||

#2  title doesn't really fit the article unless you think that murder is "outfoxing"
Posted by: Jumbo Slinerong5015 || 06/12/2009 4:43 Comments || Top||

#3  They get greater control over former Soviet territories, opponents are intimidated through violence or the threat thereof... or dead. To an old-fashioned Party man that probably looks exactly like outfoxing.
Posted by: trailing wife || 06/12/2009 6:31 Comments || Top||

#4  Not much is required here. The former Soviet republics are poor, underpopulated, geographically huge, and that's not going to change. Russia doesn't really want to rule them, just keep them in its sphere, and with their current status quo.

And being right next door, Russia will win.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 06/12/2009 11:02 Comments || Top||

#5  Kyrgyzstan: a country so poor they can't even afford vowels.
Posted by: mojo || 06/12/2009 11:02 Comments || Top||

#6  US used those areas for bases but the fact is we have minimal interest and if they wanted free of the Russians they had to step up. They did not.

Any great game in the region is gonna be fought with the Chinese but I suspect the Chinese and Russians will make a deal to prevent these areas being used as staging areas for terrorism against each other. That may (or may not) help others as we have learned lately terrorist trained to attack China look similar to terrorists trained to attack other places.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 06/12/2009 13:09 Comments || Top||

#7  Mojo Tht ws prtty fnny.
Posted by: Total War || 06/12/2009 16:13 Comments || Top||

#8  AEIOU and sometimes Y and W.

Learned that 50+ years ago. When did it all change? Why am I talking to myself? Who let me in here? Oh, the meds are kicking in. .... ....
[bliss on]
Posted by: AlmostAnonymous5839 || 06/12/2009 17:51 Comments || Top||

#9  uh huh - worked this week with a bridge prestressing crew from Dywidag (DSI Inc.). Try and say that properly...
Posted by: Frank G || 06/12/2009 20:38 Comments || Top||


Posted by: JosephMendiola || 06/12/2009 22:49 Comments || Top||

India's unwise military moves
Editorial in China's Global Times
In the last few days, India has dispatched roughly 60,000 troops to its border with China, the scene of enduring territorial disputes between the two countries.
Let me guess: the Chinese think that is 'unwise' ...
J.J. Singh, the Indian governor of the controversial area, said the move was intended to "meet future security challenges" from China. Meanwhile, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh claimed, despite cooperative India-China relations, his government would make no concessions to China on territorial disputes.

The tough posture Singh's new government has taken may win some applause among India's domestic nationalists. But it is dangerous if it is based on a false anticipation that China will cave in.

India has long held contradictory views on China. Another big Asian country, India is frustrated that China's rise has captured much of the world's attention. Proud of its "advanced political system," India feels superior to China. However, it faces a disappointing domestic situation which is unstable compared with China's.

India likes to brag about its sustainable development, but worries that it is being left behind by China. China is seen in India as both a potential threat and a competitor to surpass.

But India can't actually compete with China in a number of areas, like international influence, overall national power and economic scale. India apparently has not yet realized this. Indian politicians these days seem to think their country would be doing China a huge favor simply by not joining the "ring around China" established by the US and Japan.

India's growing power would have a significant impact on the balance of this equation, which has led India to think that fear and gratitude for its restraint will cause China to defer to it on territorial disputes.

But this is wishful thinking, as China won't make any compromises in its border disputes with India. And while China wishes to coexist peacefully with India, this desire isn't born out of fear.

India's current course can only lead to a rivalry between the two countries. India needs to consider whether or not it can afford the consequences of a potential confrontation with China. It should also be asking itself why it hasn't forged the stable and friendly relationship with China that China enjoys with many of India's neighbors, like Pakistan, Nepal and Sri Lanka.
And Tibet, don't forget the friendly relations you have with Tibet ...
Any aggressive moves will certainly not aid the development of good relations with China. India should examine its attitude and preconceptions; it will need to adjust if it hopes to cooperate with China and achieve a mutually beneficial outcome.
Posted by: john frum || 06/12/2009 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6466 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Is the disputed border between India and China or India and Tibet - I've lost track of Tibet's borders.
Posted by: Glenmore || 06/12/2009 9:03 Comments || Top||

#2  This is Chinese propaganda. It stinks of Chinese fear that India has far surpassed China.

If the USA is smart, it will build an alliance with India.
Posted by: Lagom || 06/12/2009 9:42 Comments || Top||

#3  I thought Tibet was a permanent and inalienable part of China.

And besides, it's not like Tibet's even at the outside border of China, that's Nepal and Arunachal Pradesh, currently occupied by foreign troops _from_ India. (suprise!).

If I remember my Pradeshes correctly. I don't know if they consider Andhra Pradesh a permanent and inalienable part of historic China, for instance.

Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 06/12/2009 9:50 Comments || Top||

#4  And no, I don't think either Pradeshes are really Chinese. But the Chinese think so for one of them, and, as the old saying goes "What's mine is mine, and what's yours is subject to negotiation." Or warfare.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 06/12/2009 9:52 Comments || Top||

#5  The Chinese have taken to calling Arunachal Pradesh as "Lower Tibet"
Posted by: john frum || 06/12/2009 9:54 Comments || Top||

#6  I also notice that the article fails to mention previous Chinese invasions of India.

My big suspicion is that this is all misdirection, as is all the stuff about Taiwan. They're not going to have an easy time buying weapons from Russia if they mainly talk about getting back all those parts of China that Russia currently occupies.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 06/12/2009 10:08 Comments || Top||

#7  I thought Tibet was a permanent and inalienable part of China.

The Tibetans beg to differ (there is quite a large colony of Tibetans in the Twin Cities).

Tibet was separate, but allied with China until the Communists invaded in the 1950's. It only became inalienable when the Chinese decided they needed a port in the Indian Ocean.

That's why the Maoist guerrillas get so much support in the east coast of India.
Posted by: Frozen Al || 06/12/2009 15:47 Comments || Top||

#8  Proud of its "advanced political system," India feels superior to China.

I'm not sure that that's actually the case, but it sure shows you how the Chinese think. Implicit in this is "but we Chinese are actually superior to you!" Get used to a lot of this superior/respect us/uncivilized crap for the next 30-40 years.
Posted by: gromky || 06/12/2009 16:09 Comments || Top||

Home Front: Politix
FOX News Broadcasting the Big Hate
Posted by: GolfBravoUSMC || 06/12/2009 12:11 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6469 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Fox News: The Big Hate
New York Times: The Big Lie

Looks like a wash to me, Kruggy. And we'll see who's still around in a coupla years.
Posted by: tu3031 || 06/12/2009 12:33 Comments || Top||

#2  NY Times: 8 million dead kulaks and counting.
Posted by: ed || 06/12/2009 12:40 Comments || Top||

#3  Krugman's such a joke. The white supremacist was a known hater of Fox News, W. Bush & a 9-11 Truther - hardly a conservative by today's standards. When are these lib idiots going to realize that National Socialists are far to the left of Conservative/Libertatian/Capitalists and just to the right of marxists.
Posted by: Andy Ulusoque aka Broadhead6 || 06/12/2009 13:19 Comments || Top||

#4  Disagree with #3...should read "left of communists."
Posted by: Art ofWar || 06/12/2009 13:37 Comments || Top||

#5  Fox seems to consistently top the ratings over the other networks. Viewers must get something out of Fox they don't get from the other networks. The NYTs sold its soul long ago and has little credibility as a newspaper.
Posted by: JohnQC || 06/12/2009 17:13 Comments || Top||

#6  not sure AoW, national socialism still believes in corporations fiscally making money for the state...not quite as left as marxism. Hitler was left, Stalin was more so.
Posted by: Broadhead6 || 06/12/2009 18:10 Comments || Top||

#7  The problem with today's liberals is that they know they are playing a set of politics that they can't win, but they also know conservatives can't win by merely opposing.

So, they keep conservatives all tied up in knots declaiming we are not racists and that the democrats are the real racists, when ultimately the democrats know they don't have to win this particular argument; they just have keep conservatives from winning.

This race baiting game is a real tool in their arsenal only because they can make conservatives waste tremendous amounts of time and effort declaiming an issue that not even democrats really care about.

And the democrats know, being democrats, that the only thing love will get you is married, while hate wins elections.
Posted by: badanov || 06/12/2009 19:29 Comments || Top||

Government care is an oxymoron
by Kevin O'Brien

The team is assembled and scrubbed and the patient is on the table. If all goes well, we will witness a triumph of modern politics over modern medicine.

We really should hope that it goes very poorly, indeed. Only then will we retain both a very good health care system and the chance to make it better.

The surgery that Drs. Kennedy, Waxman, Miller, Rangel and Chief of Government-Run Medicine Barack Obama propose has been done in socialist countries all over the world. Here, though, it's considered experimental. And the experiment will "work" here only if the desired results are fairness, in the sense of a broad equality of misery, and a colossal increase in the power of government over the individual.

If the desired results are freedom of choice, timely access to care, high quality of care, flexibility, innovation -- the things the vast majority of Americans enjoy today -- plus any chance at reducing cost and bureaucracy, the proposals the Democratic surgical team is pushing are exactly the wrong things to do. And all of them -- President Barack Obama, Sen. Edward Kennedy and Reps. Henry Waxman, George Miller and Charles Rangel -- know it.

Four congressional committees are mobilizing to yank health care out of the private sector and finish the job of making medicine a government enterprise. You know, like a bank or a car company.

The "single-payer" people, who have clamored for years in favor of a straight government takeover of the entire health insurance system, are upset because Obama no longer publicly agrees with them. They needn't worry -- and the savvy ones aren't worried, because they recognize a useful smoke screen when they see one.

Obama and the framers of the House's legislation propose a "public health insurance option" to compete with (Democratic subliminal message alert) EVIL, FILTHY, NASTY, AWFUL, MEAN, GREEDY, HORRIBLE private health insurers. Kennedy favors the "government option," too, but apparently hasn't included it, yet, in the bill he is writing.

The government option is the end of the health care system we know today. It's single-payer in two easy steps, rather than one politically difficult one.

When government competes directly with the private sector, government wins -- as all auto companies that are not General Motors are about to find out -- because government is not only playing the game but making the rules.

In a letter intended to push Kennedy and a reluctant Sen. Max Baucus, head of the Senate Finance Committee, toward the government option, Obama expressed a "core belief that Americans should have better choices for health insurance, building on the principle that if they like the coverage they have now, they can keep it."

Even the most ardent single-payer advocate can afford such a core belief, knowing that the key words are "if they like the coverage they have now," and that once government is in the game, it can easily make it impossible for private companies to offer coverage that Americans and their employers like.

Read Obama's letter, which lays out the health care program he expects Congress to place on his desk for signature this fall. The numbers don't come close to adding up and elements of the program contradict one another. For example, how would covering more people and doing more preventive care -- that's treating more people more often -- cut costs? We're a lot more likely to see costs cut by denial of Jane's hip replacement or Joe's prostate cancer surgery. It will be cheaper for Jane to limp, and Joe to die.

The most tragic thing about the enormous changes the Democrats propose -- and the reason why Obama and his congressional allies are bent on rushing them through as fast as they can -- is that once private-sector health care is gone, there will be no bringing it back.

The question on the table is not whether Americans have legitimate gripes about their medical system -- we do. The question is whether we think it's in such terrible shape that even the government could do a better job with it. That's what any plan that includes a government "option" is really asking. The right answer, clearly, is a resounding "no."

Let Congress hear it, over and over.
Posted by: || 06/12/2009 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6473 views] Top|| File under:

#1  It is in the government's interest to keep you alive for as long as you are paying in to the system ... and not one minute longer. Once you reach retirement, you are a net burden to government and their incentive is to see that burden end as quickly as possible. I could see eliminating medical care for people over 80 as a "cost cutting" measure.
Posted by: crosspatch || 06/12/2009 1:27 Comments || Top||

#2  The "Medical Crisis" Chicken Littles who ignored the continuous extension of life expectancy in the 20th Century will witness their 'fix' with the stagnation if not decline of life expectancy in the 21st Century. Oh, members of the Inner Party exempted [as always].
Posted by: Procopius2k || 06/12/2009 7:59 Comments || Top||

#3  The government care promoters are not oxymorons, they are regular morons.
Posted by: whatadeal || 06/12/2009 12:02 Comments || Top||

 PAF defends charges but a probe is needed
Defence deals of the Pakistan Air Force in recent years, worth billions of US dollars, need a public scrutiny amid growing reports of kickbacks, procedural violations and compromise on technology.

While a former air chief, Saadat Kaleem, has already accused General Pervez Musharraf of ruining the PAFís $1.2 billion Saab Surveillance System deal by adding the Chinese technology with the Swedish for possible kickbacks, producing a mismatch, some insiders insist that the situation is worse than what the former air chief has hinted at.

A credible source said that the PAFís Air Board had been bypassed in quite a few defence deals during the recent years owing to pressures both from within and outside the force. The PAF spokesman, however, insists that the contracting of various items is the prime responsibility of the concerned branch of the Air Headquarters and is not required to be discussed and approved by the Air Board.

Before the last major PAF deal worth $1 billion for the first consignment of JF-17 aircraft, an influential Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) pilot having close association with a key ruler in Islamabad was seen visiting the top offices at the Air Headquarters in Islamabad. Following these visits towards the end of January 2009, the $1 billion deal on JF-17 moved on a fast track. The same PIA employee interestingly travelled to China, along with President Asif Ali Zardari, in February this year to obtain a one billion dollar loan.

PAF spokesman Group Captain Tariq Mehmood, however, did not respond to the question about the strange visits of strangers to the Air Headquarters before the loan contract was signed. Mehmood said that the JF-17 serial production contract was being negotiated since December 2006 and was almost finalised in June 2008 but could not be concluded due to non-release of funds by the government.

This delay, he said, was adversely affecting the operational capability of the PAF and the work at the PAC Kamra. ìSince then, efforts are being made for the arrangement of funds,î the PAF spokesman said in a note that he gave to this correspondent in response to a number of queries e-mailed to him. For quite some time, the spokesman was hesitant to respond to The News queries but later came up with his response on selected questions, still requesting to delay the story by a few weeks.

A source disclosed that the March deal of $1 billion was not presented before the JF-17 projectís Board of Directors for approval, but the PAF spokesman said: ìThe JF-17 Board of Directors was regularly updated on the status of the JF-17 Serial Production (SP) contract.î

He said that in January 2009, a presentation was given to the president, the prime minister and other cabinet members following which the federal government directed the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Finance to take up the matter with the Chinese authorities for concessional credit. ìSubsequently, with the efforts of Pakistanís ambassador to China and the PAF, the seller (CATIC) offered a sellerís credit facility for the SP Contract.î

The spokesman said that on the instructions of the prime minister, the offer was subsequently negotiated by a joint team of the PAF, JF-17 project representative, the Ministry of Finance and the Pakistan Embassy.

He said that the case was finally put up for the governmentís approval, which was later approved. An agreement was then signed for a credit of about $1 billion to be payable over seven years at a cost of around $100 million (approximately at the rate of 1.4 per cent per year).

The PAF spokesman did not clearly respond if the JF-17 BoD and the PAFís Air Board approved the proposal too. He dispelled the impression that the loan had been obtained at an extraordinary mark-up. Sources said the prevalent rate in the world was less than one per cent.

ìThis is the most economical credit facility ever negotiated,î said the spokesman, adding after the formal approval of the government, the contract was signed by the JF-17 PMO and the PAC Kamra on March 7. ìAll principal staff officers at the Air Headquarters and the Chinese ambassador witnessed the signing ceremony.î

Tariq Mahmood said that the JF-17 contract was signed on highly favourable terms that included transfer of technology for airframe manufacturing immediately and avionics package next year. The contract, he said, heralds the realisation and commitment of both Pakistan and China to turn their cherished dream of co-producing a modern fighter into a reality and beginning of a new era of aviation industry in Pakistan.

According to a source, besides the latest deal, the PAF Air Board was also ignored in a few other deals worth $800 million struck with Brazil, South Africa, Russia and Italy in the last few years for purchase of different technologies for the PAF.

Tariq Mehmood, however, explained every case was not supposed to go to the Air Board for approval. He said the vice chief of the air staff, who manages the PAF budget, allocates funds for all such contracts and hence is always in the loop for such authorisations by the Air Headquarters. He said once the proposal was approved by the Air Headquarters, the ministries of defence and finance do further scrutiny, hold negotiations and finalise contracts. ìThe process is totally transparent and above board. The Air Board is periodically apprised of all these issues,î he claimed. The sources said in the coming few years, defence deals worth $8-10 billion were expected for which the government should evolve a mechanism so that right purchases were made for the countryís air force without any chance of kickbacks.
Posted by: || 06/12/2009 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6467 views] Top|| File under:

Home Front: Culture Wars
Did David Letterman get a free pass?
Posted by: GolfBravoUSMC || 06/12/2009 12:18 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6492 views] Top|| File under:

#1  So is the proper answer here "Yes" or "Duh"?
Posted by: tu3031 || 06/12/2009 12:29 Comments || Top||

#2  Of course he did - he didn't insult a real human, just a middle American. They're not people like you and me, it's perfectly OK to say the worst things about them.
Posted by: gromky || 06/12/2009 13:07 Comments || Top||

#3  Conservatives always play victims, always. The whole world is against them.
Posted by: Goober Grineting7263 || 06/12/2009 14:39 Comments || Top||

#4  #1 - I prefer the regional variant "Duurrrrr!" :)
Posted by: Grenter, Protector of the Geats || 06/12/2009 14:40 Comments || Top||

#5  Didn't Letterman father a child out of wedlock and then marry the 'lady' later to make it all 'legal'. What does that make his wife and the child. None of that is fodder for jokes though. It wouldn't be 'PC'.
Posted by: Total War || 06/12/2009 14:43 Comments || Top||

#6  Conservatives always play victims, always.

Easy when the left always plays by the game of - One set of rules for me, another set of rules for thee. Interesting how the conservatives either threw their miscreants out or let them hang without support for actions that liberals look the other way on for their own. When you have no principles other than to gain and retain power like the libs, its hard to become a real victim on any other principles.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 06/12/2009 15:32 Comments || Top||

#7  The longer Letterman's show goes on the less I like it. He has the aura of a crochety older man who is not very funny and exhibits bad taste at the expense of himself and others in his comments.
Posted by: JohnQC || 06/12/2009 16:22 Comments || Top||

#8  interestingly the article was at Salon a lefty webcorner

I scanned the comments. Seems a majority of the commenters thought there was nothing wrong with the Letterman 'jokes'.
Posted by: Lord garth || 06/12/2009 16:22 Comments || Top||

#9  In the guise of talking about Palin over time, Letterman really comes across as a woman hater...

“You know, she reminds me, she looks like the flight attendant who won’t give you a second can of Pepsi. No, you’ve had enough. We’re landing. Looks like the waitress at the coffee shop who draws a little smiley face on your check. Have a nice day.”

“She looks like the dip sample lady at Safeway. She looks like the nurse who weighs you and then makes you sit alone in your underwear for 20 minutes. She looks like the Olive Garden hostess who says, ‘I’m sorry, your table isn’t ready yet.” She looks like infomercial lady who says she made $64,000 a month flipping condos.”

“[S]he looks like the lady at the bakery who yells out ‘44! 45!’ She looks like a real estate agent whose picture you see on the bus stop bench. That’s who she looks like. She looks like the lady who has a chain of cupcake stores…”
Posted by: Jumbo Omuns6546 || 06/12/2009 18:12 Comments || Top||

#10  “[S]he looks like the lady at the bakery who yells out ‘44! 45!’ She looks like a real estate agent whose picture you see on the bus stop bench. That’s who she looks like. She looks like the lady who has a chain of cupcake stores…”

..she looks like a lady, period. Letterman wouldn't know what that is.
Posted by: Broadhead6 || 06/12/2009 18:15 Comments || Top||

#11  I wonder if the proper response would be to suggest how such humor would be taken if Letterman had suggested the Obama’s 8 and 11 year old daughters were raped by some rap star like Robert Sylvester Kelly aka “R. Kelly”, who seems to have a penchant for underage girls?

I’m sure the Obamas wouldn’t have a problem with that, because they are enlightened liberals, and if their daughters were amenable to having sex while underage, it would be fine with them. They might insist that mister Kelly use a condom, or if not, and the elder girl became pregnant, they would be more than happy to escort her to an abortionist, to dispose of the unwanted “thing”.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 06/12/2009 19:46 Comments || Top||

#12  that's right 'moose, after all O did say once that he wouldn't want them punished w/a baby.
Posted by: Broadhead6 || 06/12/2009 19:58 Comments || Top||

#13  Hey Dave? Did she look like the whore mother that birthed your bastard child til you, years later, recently got married? Did you adopt your own son?
Posted by: Frank G || 06/12/2009 21:05 Comments || Top||

#14  Well, yeah.
Posted by: Barbara Skolaut || 06/12/2009 22:30 Comments || Top||

#15  Anyone ever see the skank Letterman knocked up and then married?
Posted by: Hellfish || 06/12/2009 23:37 Comments || Top||

Jonah Goldberg: connecting dots that aren't there
When an abortion provider in Wichita, Kans., was murdered, the predictable chorus pointed fingers at Fox News's Bill O'Reilly. After all, O'Reilly had said that George Tiller was a "baby killer" and had railed against the doctor's late-term abortion practice for years. He must be to blame! No one bothered to ask whether Tiller's accused murderer had ever watched O'Reilly, or to ponder whether a militant pro-life extremist really needed a talk-show host to tell him anything he didn't already know about one of the less than a dozen doctors in the country who still performed third-trimester abortions.

But never mind. Such details don't matter when you're trying to delegitimize people.

Now we have James von Brunn. He is an 88-year-old loon, considered a dangerous nut even within the dangerous-nut community. He took his gun and shot up the Holocaust Museum and murdered a guard. Reporting suggests that von Brunn wanted to fulfill his revenge fantasies against the Jewish-neocon globalist cabal, which apparently outsources much of its work to the Bush family. A 9/11 truther, convinced that the bagel-snarfing, string-pulling Jooooooooooozzz are behind everything, von Brunn is the kind of fanatic the zombies who talk to themselves at the bus station would give a wide berth.

But, of course, we have Sarah Palin to thank for von Brunn. So says some genius at the Daily Kos. A competing braniac at the Huffington Post says, "Thank you very much Karl Rove and your minions." Pretty much the entire media establishment is comfortable labeling von Brunn as a member of the "far right." Putting aside other objections to that nomenclature, if von Brunn is a member of the far right, then it would be helpful and journalistically responsible if the press would start calling Rush Limbaugh, Newt Gingrich, Sean Hannity, et al., moderates and centrists.

That won't happen, because the whole point of these exercises is to paint the Right as an undifferentiated blob of evil....
Go read it all. The last paragraph is a zinger:
Maniacs like von Brunn connect dots that aren't there because that's what paranoid anti-Semites do. What's the Left's excuse?
Posted by: Mike || 06/12/2009 09:54 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "After all, for years, mainstream liberalism and other outposts of paranoid Bush hatred have portrayed neoconservatives — usually code for conservative Jews and other supporters of Israel — as an alien, pernicious cabal."

There is a little show called Democracy Now. For those not acquainted it is one the favorites of the Marxist/Progressive movement. This Orwellian titled broadcast frequently charges the “corporate media” of white washing over the true Zionist agenda. Commonly with the backdrop of Gaza rubble and white phosphorus, on any given day, one can view a cavalcade of Terrorist sympathizers or Anti-Military activists denouncing “America’s complicity in Israeli aggression”. The insinuations couldn’t be clearer. The day after the Holocaust Museum tragedy they dedicated an entire episode on how the White Nationalist Movement and the Von Brunns of the world are fueled by the “Right Wing Echo Chamber”. The irony was amusing. The hypocrisy was overwhelming.
Posted by: DepotGuy || 06/12/2009 14:14 Comments || Top||

#2  Crazy is just plain crazy--it's not right or left. However,the MSM media loves to off-load everything that happens in the world on right wing extremists--its own personal favorite boogeyman. Someone that does something crazy on the left does not get labeled left wing extremist; they simply are "misguided", had a "bad childhood" or get a pass.
Posted by: JohnQC || 06/12/2009 17:27 Comments || Top||

#3  If the MSM can't fit it in the Left/Right space continuum everything else is color or race based.
Posted by: Broadhead6 || 06/12/2009 18:18 Comments || Top||

Who's in the News
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1Global Jihad
1Abu Sayyaf
1al-Qaeda in Iraq
1Lashkar e-Taiba
1al-Qaeda in Pakistan
1Moro Islamic Liberation Front
1Jemaah Islamiyah

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A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.

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Meet the Mods
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Two weeks of WOT
Fri 2009-06-12
  Iran votes: Not a pretty sight
Thu 2009-06-11
  Gitmo Uighurs in Bermuda
Wed 2009-06-10
  Foopy becomes first Gitmo boy to stand trial in US
Tue 2009-06-09
  Truck bomb and gunnies attack 5-star Peshawar hotel
Mon 2009-06-08
  March 14 Maintains Parliamentary Majority in Record Turnout
Sun 2009-06-07
  30 MILF banged, camp seized
Sat 2009-06-06
  32 dead in mosque Pakaboom
Fri 2009-06-05
  Sufi Muhammad arrested
Thu 2009-06-04
  Three killed in renewed Hamas-PA clashes in Qalqiliya
Wed 2009-06-03
  Hafiz Saeed sprung
Tue 2009-06-02
  NKor names Kimmie's successor
Mon 2009-06-01
  Mass kiddy abduction by Talibs in Pakistan
Sun 2009-05-31
  Former director of National Security Intel was owned by ISI
Sat 2009-05-30
  Mighty Pak Army clears Piochar valley
Fri 2009-05-29
  Pakistan: Suspects arrested for ´plotting attack against spy agency´

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