Saturday, December 19, 2009

Best Cookies Evah!

I guess. A tiptoe down memory lane from the late, lamented Gourmet Magazine.

Are There Really Independent Voters?

Not so's you'd notice, apparently. So when Chris Mattews or George S. or whoever waives the scary flag and says "but he's losing independents" or some such, take a deep breath and turn off the TV. They don't know what they're talking about.
This guy does.
Thus, Obama’s declining approval rating is more a story about losing the Republicans who are unlikely to vote for him anyway than it is a story about losing independents.

It's A Class Thing

Ezra Klein is combing through the CBO report on Reid's version of the health care bill and finds a revenue gem:
And then there's my favorite sentence in the CBO report: "The 5 percent excise tax on cosmetic surgery was eliminated, and a 10 percent excise tax on indoor tanning services was added." Alrighty then.

Health Care Reform, Ch. 97

Told as only Gail Collins can tell it.

People, when did it become necessary for average, conscientious-but-not-fanatic citizens to know the names of so many senators? There was probably a time when you thought “Max Baucus” was a brand of sausage. And now we not only know that he is the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee and from Montana, we are also up to the minute on his divorce and his “mature and happy” relationship with his live-in girlfriend.

We know more about Max Baucus than we do about Brad Pitt! That seems wrong, so very wrong.

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Daily Joke

From The Daily Dish. Actually, they've been publishing reader submitted jokes all day, several of which are favorites that I have been telling for years, and also most depressing Christmas songs.
I like this joke:

Young Chuck moved to Texas and bought a donkey from a farmer for $100. The farmer agreed to deliver the donkey the next day. The next day the farmer drove up and said, 'Sorry Chuck, but I have some bad news, the donkey died.'
Chuck replied, 'Well, then just give me my money back.'
The farmer said, 'Can't do that. I went and spent it already.'
Chuck said, 'OK, then, just bring me the dead donkey.'
The farmer asked, 'What ya gonna do with a dead donkey?'
Chuck said, 'I'm going to raffle him off.'
The farmer said 'You can't raffle off a dead donkey!'
Chuck said, 'Sure I can. Watch me. I just won't tell anybody he's dead.'
A month later, the farmer met up with Chuck and asked, 'What happened with that dead donkey?'
Chuck said, 'I raffled him off. I sold 500 tickets at two dollars apiece and made a profit of $898.00.'
The farmer said, 'Didn't anyone complain?'
Chuck said, 'Just the guy who won. So I gave him his two dollars back.'
Chuck now works for JP Morgan.

God, I Love This Song

It is, after all, Friviality Friday!

Congress Is Like The Office Christmas Party

I pretty much love commenter Lars Thorwald, who was always good for some sanity over at Glenn Greenwald's blog, when I read Glenn Greenwald's blog.
His name is probably not Lars Thorwald and I know his picture is not really him, but that's the 'sphere for ya. He wrote a diary somewhere once that said it was okay because it did not violate the ethics he must abide by as a DOJ employee, so maybe his name really is Lars Thorwald.
Sometimes he weighs in on Kos, like today, and I am miraculously restored.
Come to find out he's a litigator, which explains everything. I have this thing for lawyers.
And let's face it, with this Congress...well, this Congress is like those clown that say, "Oh, yeah, I'm on board with helping to contribute to the office holiday party!  What do I need to bring?"  And you tell them, "Well, you can contribute $15, that would help us buy booze and food for everyone," and they allllll say, "Yeah, okay, sure!"  So then you announce it to the whole office with a set date, and you promise top shelf booze and great food.  And then two days later, a guy from accounting comes in and says, "Oh, hey, I can't make it, so I won't be contributing," and then that stuffy woman from down the hall comes in and says, "You know, I'm not going to eat a whole lot, so I'm just going to give you $5," even though you know damned well she will be at the party practically vacuuming up all the Captain Morgan and eating every chip she can get her grabby little meat paws on, and then the next guy comes in and makes some excuse why he shouldn't have to contribute, and the next thing you know your office party is a case of Schlitz and a tray of Oreos, and everyone looks at you and bitches that the party sucks.  That's our Democratic Congress.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Why Are Northern Europeans White?

Eat your cereal, LarsNorsGrud, and quit asking stupid questions.

People who eat grains do not get vitamin D from food; they must get it from sunlight.

What A Weak Movie Decade

was what I first thought when I read the list of lists Slate is running (it's still in process).
A lot of them were on my list, too, and a lot of them I didn't see, especially the foreign ones.
A lot of them (Spotless Mind, There Will Be Blood) just weren't even worth the time I wasted watching.
But among the ones I saw and liked, nothing comes close to Angels In America, The Wire, Deadwood or The Sopranos.
Fuck movies, man! If it's not HBO, it's probably not worth it.

Greek Tragedy 101

David Simon says The Wire was Greek tragedy.
But we mostly get Shakespeare.
Rises up against the odds?
“You can’t do that.” “Yes, I can.” “No, you can’t.” “I’ll show you, see?” And in the end he’s recognized as just a goodhearted rebel with right on his side, and eventually the town realizes that dancing’s not so bad. I can make up a million of ’em. That’s the story we want to be told over and over again. And you know why? Because in our heart of hearts what we know about the 21st century is that every day we’re going to be worth less and less, not more and more.

Journalists Love Them Some Lists

Foreign Policy gives us the worst 10 predictions for 2009.
Trouble with lists is sometimes you have to really stretch. See # 10. Dana Rohrbacher?

Who Is Obama?

And why does he hate us liberals?
Marc Ambinder tries to answer.
And the White House makes a distinction between self-identified liberals -- who, polls tell us, still love the president -- and the activists who cue those liberals, many of whom are calling into question the entire Obama project.

Krugman's Disappointed, Too, But...

By all means denounce Obama for his failed bipartisan gestures. By all means criticize the administration. But don’t take it out on the tens of millions of Americans who will have health insurance if this bill passes, but will be out of luck — and, in some cases, dead — if it doesn’t.
He's not one to give up.

Back To Basics

It's the economy, honey.
Based on projected figures, more than a million women will find their way to the bankruptcy courts this year -- more women than will graduate from college, receive a diagnosis of cancer, or file for divorce. The numbers are staggering.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Senator Al Franken

for V.P. in Obama's second term.
Rape amendment survives.
An amendment to the Defense Appropriations bill introduced by Sen. Al Franken (D-MN), which would allow rape victims employed by defense contractors to have their day in court, has made it through conference committee and into the final version of the bill.

10 Reasons It Is A Good, Not Great, Bill

From John Podesta who, only yesterday, was making noises about reconciliation. Apparently, someone has had a little talk with him

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Ezra Klein

a key liberal blogger (Wapo) on politics, said this about the health reform bill on Charlie Rose tonight:
"You take the first step now and the next step later."
I agree. Pass this bill, please.
I can hardly wait for cap and trade.

Second City

Pervades your life, even if you never heard of it.

Cancer: What's Not To Laugh At?

NPR always comes through on slow news days.
An honorary contrarienne is missing a lot of body parts and cracks:
"At least I've had cancer on parts you can remove," she jokes. "It's a brutal weight loss program."


from those diabolical people at Google.

I think they'd make fun chess pieces.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Not Shocked, Surprised Though

McJoan is resigned.

At this point, the assistance to the people who need it most is the critical moral and policy decision. Would it be a band-aid? Yes, but even a band-aid can staunch bleeding, and right now that's what we desperately need. The insurance reforms matter a great deal, too, and can be passed through regular process. It will be a lot harder for Senators to stand up and vote to allow insurance companies to continue to deny coverage to the American people.
Now that Medicare buy-in and the public option have been sacrificed at the altar of Joe, there's still the problem of Nelson and Stupak hanging out there, a proposal that could do more long-term harm to the nation's women than those market reforms could bring. Stripping this bill down to the core assistance to the uninsured might be the last saving grace it could have.

No Medicare Buy-In After All?

So Lieberman said he'd filibuster it and the Senate Dems are in caucus now and Harkin wants a bill revived to restrict filibustering and reading all this all day, I'm going to go out on a limb and say they'll pass what they can, go to conference with the House and try to pull something together breaking kneecaps in the interim.
We'll have a health care reform bill in the Senate before Christmas, but we won't like it.
We'll have a health care reform bill from the conference, and I don't know what it will look like.
Reconciliation? Podesta made those noises today, but I'm really, really doubtful.
Try to look on the bright side. Social Security was awful when they first passed it, too.
It got better over time.
I'm gonna go find Shorty's Frisbee.

Joe Lieberman? It's YouTube All Day For Me, Man. All Day.

Guitar Hero Christmas

I guess GH offers the programming assistance, but somebody still has to do the light set-up, right?
Full screen viewing suggested.

Slogan O' Teh Day


There was so much that stunk to high heaven, I had forgotten about the millions of emails the Bush administration "lost."
Apparently CREW didn't. We're gonna see 'em. And for some extra candy in the stocking, the White House is throwing in some Cheney goodies, too.
Still, the settlement requires the White House to restore 33 days selected by the plaintiffs, including the timeframe September 30 through October 5, 2003. This period is significant because email messages sent and received on those days were the subject of a subpoena by Patrick Fitzgerald, the special prosecutor in the Plame leak case. Although the Bush White House knew of email archiving problems as early as February 2004, evidence of the problem didn't become obvious outside of the White House until the administration told Fitzgerald that it couldn't locate any emails from the Office of the Vice President on those days.

Remember When It Was July?