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June 11, 2008 03:45 PM UTC

Wednesday Open Thread

  • 56 Comments
  • by: Colorado Pols

“The superior man understands what is right; the inferior man understands what will sell.”

–Confucius

Comments

56 thoughts on “Wednesday Open Thread

  1. ….Obama’s Veep Vetter, has a large piece written on him by the Washpo today.  And….

    Ho hum.  Never found any wrongdoing at FNMA, at all, not even a whiff.

    Go home, ColoradoPolitcs, and find something worthy of our waste of time.  

    1. Why’d you have to wake up and pee in the beehive?!?

      How’s FL?  Hope you have a chance to sit on a beach somewhere and enjoy a nice Dominican (cigar).  Cheers.

      1. Low 90’s, humidity close to that. Coping. Sweating.

        I’ve only been to the beach when family was here in February.  Maybe I’ll go back now that most of the tourists are gone.  It’s hard to believe I was a lifeguard and water safety instructor at one time.  

        I prefer Hondurans (wink, wink, got it.)

    2. Receiving a loan from someone you are regulating is wrong. Your depiction of the Washington Post article is inaccurate. I assume that is why you do not have a link to it. It is rather unseemly to claim an article says one thing when in fact is says something else.

      It is all too typical to say that Senator Obama can do no wrong rather than objectively analyze the mistake he has made.

      Please read that article and today’s NY Time article on James Johnson.  Than tell me that story has no traction.

      http://www.washingtonpost.com/

      http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06

    3. Please read the articles I provide links for and than say with a straight face or keyboard that James Johnson is not a problem.  

      1. I read those articles. He was definitely damaged goods for Obama (would have been fine for McCain). In some ways that fact that what he did was all legal would bother people more than if he had broken a law.

        I continue to be impressed by how Obama quickly faces up to problems and fixes them.

      2. Someone should give a little credit for the correct prediction. James Johnson became a problem and finally had to go. This decision should have been made Saturday night.  

        1. .

          but it looks like your unflagging determination to keep this scandal boiling on every Diary at this site

          is what finally brought him down.

          .

          1. Thank you for your kind words and insightful observation.

            As late as this morning Parsing Reality was toeing the official Obama line. You could see this one coming from the second the WSJ article appeared. Too bad it took the future Senior Senator from Illinois so long to figure it out

            1. How long has it been since news broke about Phil Gramm, McCain’s top economic advisor, setting campaign policy on the housing crisis while being paid to lobby for UBS?

              It’s a far more serious problem and the McCain camp is silent.

              Is it simply your contention the Republicans are better at smearing Obama associates? That could be true.

    1. In the movie Hatari! one of the characters was threatening to beat up John Wayne’s character (yeah, right. like anyone can beat up John Wayne). For people prone to fighting, I think Wayne’s response was the best (read it to yourself with your best John Wayne impersonation):

      “Better bring a lunch.”

      (Other than seeing a few snippets of the movie on a cable channel last weekend, I haven’t seen it in years and can’t remember any of the characters’ names, but the line is a classic.)

    2. I let myself get away a little yesterday.  I was just trying to provide the little ball of hate with a constructive outlet for all that bile he’s apparently compressed inside himself, but I have a feeling we might not be in the same weight class.  

      Anyway, I’m supposed to be a little more mature than that.

      Just in case anyone’s confused, I didn’t threaten to beat up Go Blue.  I invited him to a refereed, structured boxing match.  Great big difference.

  2. A liberal is someone who will defend to the death your right to do whatever you want with whomever you want in your bedroom, so long as you don’t smoke afterward.

    And God help you if you have a gun in your nightstand, too.

    1. A liberal is someone who will defend your right to do whatever you want with whomever you want in your bedroom, so long as everything you’re doing is with someone who can consent. Smoke if you want, but the other people in the room better be of age.

      You are completely right that we’d come down like a ton of bricks if the person were smoking after sex with a minor. Though the smoking bit would probably get lost in all the other charges that were thrown at him/her.

      Matthew

    1. There is no back up for the supposition, so lets go through this slow.

      1. ANWR-no data indicates a savings of more than $0.05-$.01 is more likely.  Won’t give us our nickel for 5 years.

      Shale? give me a break between the cost of the water and the energy used to heat the ground to extract the water–shale is economically unviable.  Never helps gas price.

      2. Deep oil-No one is really blocking this.  The impediment to deep water is technological.  The problems are significant, but solvable.  New fields are 10 years out.  The numbers seem optimistic and are likely only to make up for post peak losses from already existing fields.

      3. refineries–it is a problem.  Oil Companies don’t want to build them–they make more profit on scarcity.  Its easier to expand capacity at existing refineries as necessary.

      4. gas tax holiday- no economist believes it will help gas prices, by more than a nickel. That’s a bout a dollar a week for 3 months.  Thanks for the 15 bucks.  Does this new plan still call for suspending highway and bridge construction?

      5. I actually think the SPR idea is a bad idea.

      The reality is that there is nothing, nothing, the government can do about gas prices in the short run.

      This is a long term problem that we have failed to address since Reagan took the solar panels off the whitehouse and ended the tax breaks for solar energy.  Our problem is structural and requires structural solutions.

      1. The reality is that there is nothing, nothing, the government can do about gas prices in the short run.

        If this country credibly got it’s butt in gear with a full-blown effort to power cars with electricity (probably hydrogen) and generate electricity from renewables (including nuclear) and clean coal.

        And we clearly were going to achieve a lot of this goal in 5 years… Then you would see the futures market dive.

        1. you have a point about traders (having been one, I prefer the term to speculator).  They will respond to future expectations of demand and supply.  They know there is no way to increase supply and in fact supply is decreasing. If there was credible evidence of a demand increase they would repond to it and begin shorting the market.

        2. lift the 54 cent per gallon tariff on Brazilian ethanol. GM already has 4 million dual fuel vehicles on the road that can run on e-85. Long term, our solution lies in conservation but E-85 is part of the answer.  And all it requires is for the government to stop making things worse by the ethanol tariff!  (plus, go gangbusters for domestic cellulosic ethanol.) It works now. So does your hydrogen fuel cell car, but it has the tiny drawback of costing $1 million a pop. E-85, which causes no net buildup of CO2, is no panacea, but its a helluva big part of the solution.

      2. As a life-long Republican I want to chime in on Reagan.  While the conservative wing loves to was poetic about the Reagan era, I have a much different take.  One has to wonder where we would be today if Reagan had not gutted the NREL budgets, shelved the algae-to-biodiesel programs and ran the solar and wind industries off shore to Japan and Germany.  Would we be in a war for oil that is costing us $20 million/hr and untold innocent lives? Would we have the ability to thumb our noses at these tin cup dictators and terrorists who are bankrupting this nation?  Would we be selling our soul to the Chinese at the clip of $1 billion/day?  Would we now be experiencing world-wide economic growth thanks to abundant, cheap power from renewable resources that lifted developing nation’s out of poverty? Yes, We could have  a $20/barrel market today (just like Rupert Murdoch predicted when we went to war)….but without the war — it would be because we didn’t need the damn stuff anymore and there was no world market for it.  As for this Republican — I proudly disavow myself from the “Reagan Revolution”.  All it created was a precursor to the revolution we have today…the one we’re losing.

        1. Other than energy policy, what did you not dig about the Gipper?

          I have a feeling you’re not really a conservative, but I’d love for you to open my eyes.

          Marginal tax rate?  Defense policy?

          1. We started down a very slippery slope the day we started making war a for-profit enterprise in this country.  I don’t recall the exact quote from Eisenhower, but he did predict the kind of scenario we now have in the modern world: Haliburton as our defacto commander-in-chief.  That, coupled with the Reagan-era MO of “corporate socialism masquerading as a free market” has done little to advance any true, free market principles in this country and given us things like the Silverado debacle, Enron, Bear-Stearns [insert name of the scandal du jour].  The free market, unchecked, is not a good thing IMHO.  Unlike the Gipper, I don’t believe government is inherintly evil.  It has a legitimate role to play in our daily lives — and increasinly so as we cede power to corporate boardrooms.

          2. …until 1987 when he was shamed into it by Elizabeth Taylor, Nancy (because all her hair dressers kept dying on her), and Rock Hudson.

            1. We built our economic might around the principal of cheap and abundant energy.  This isn’t some “greenie” idea…it’s about prosperity, jobs and security.  We’ve lost our ability to exert our principals of democracy and freedom around the world.  Do you think Bush scares Putin? the Ayatollahs?

              Just insert [name of any tin cup dictator around the world] and you’ll come up with the same answer.  It won’t take much of an event in the Middle East and we’ll soon have $200 oil. 60% of our armed services jet fuel comes from Russia now — does bother you in the least?  When China’s premier comes to the US he now starts on the west coast with a visit to Bill Gates and THEN knocks on the White House door. Bush holds hands with the Saudi Princes and all we get is “thanks but no thanks” to increasing production.   Did you by chance see Fox News on Monday night – and hear the O’Reilly rant about this very issue — you’d know we’ve turned a corner when you have O’Reilly finally waking up to our energy woes.  

        2. But I’m glad you’re over on the other side and I presume trying to get the stuck-in-the-past Repubs to see past 1980.

          Thanks.  

      3. I read this article recently in the New York Times, and the idea surprised me. Something to consider. I’m curious about others’ reactions:

        http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02

        If two scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory are correct, people will still be driving gasoline-powered cars 50 years from now, churning out heat-trapping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere – and yet that carbon dioxide will not contribute to global warming.

        The scientists, F. Jeffrey Martin and William L. Kubic Jr., are proposing a concept, which they have patriotically named Green Freedom, for removing carbon dioxide from the air and turning it back into gasoline.

        Turn greenhouse gases back into gasoline? Talk about counterintuitive.

        1. Take CO2, capture it using photosynthesis, process the resulting hydrocarbons from the photosynthesis mechanism, output gasoline (or diesel…).

          What’s so bizarre about that?  Aside from the fact that they’re talking gasoline, which hasn’t traditionally been a biofuel product.

          1. But what these scientists are proposing is getting the carbon dioxide directly from the atmosphere rather than from plants grown on swaths of farmland:

            The idea is simple. Air would be blown over a liquid solution of potassium carbonate, which would absorb the carbon dioxide. The carbon dioxide would then be extracted and subjected to chemical reactions that would turn it into fuel: methanol, gasoline or jet fuel.

            Of course there are major infrastructure hurdles in order to do what they’re proposing. However, it’s worthy of mention.

            1. …about thos eCO2 collectors.  IIRC, not very efficient, they, too, take energy.  And CO2 mixed in with an absorbent needs more energy to get it out.  And then what?

              Hey, not to diss any effort, we need to look at everything.  But this one isn’t looking real good at the present.  

              BTW, there used to be SCUBA equipment called rebreathers.  You breathed pure oxygen and the CO2 is absorbed by dry powder.  Because of the pure oxygen, your depth is limited to about 30 feet.  But a big advantage for certain lines of work is no bubbles.  You’ll probably find a few of these in the SEALS inventory.  

  3. That could be the name for the two most recent Republican Presidential nominees.

    From the Des Moines Register:

    John McCain:

    Summer 1958: Graduates fifth from the bottom of his Naval Academy class and is commissioned as officer. McCain’s class rank was 894 out of 899 graduates.

  4. This Talking Points Memo story might be getting some attention soon. Apparently Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, often mentioned as a favorite to join the McCain ticket, participated in an exorcism. According to a first-person account by Jindal, dug up by TPM, it’s a wonder Susan’s head didn’t spin around:

    Kneeling on the ground, my friends were chanting, “Satan, I command you to leave this woman.” Others exhorted all “demons to leave in the name of Christ.” It is no exaggeration to note the tears and sweat among those assembled. Susan lashed out at the assembled students with verbal assaults….

    Almost taunting the evil spirit that had almost beaten us minutes before, the students dared Susan to read biblical passages. She choked on certain passages and could not finish the sentence “Jesus is Lord.” Over and over, she repeated “Jesus is L..L..LL,” often ending in profanities…. Just as suddenly as she went into the trance, Susan suddenly reappeared and claimed “Jesus is Lord.”

    With an almost comical smile, Susan then looked up as if awakening from a deep sleep and asked, “Has something happened?” She did not remember any of the past few hours and was startled to find her friends breaking out in cheers and laughter, overwhelmed by sudden joy and relief.

    1.    WOW, you don’t se those everyday! This could turn out being a better show than watching Pat Robertson speaking in tongues!  

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