Re: The chair! Give him the chair!

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In related news, Trollblog has it's first real post up: everything you need to know about the financial scandal. And McManus is still invited to post there, if he wants.

Like Ted Kaczynski and many Unfoggetarians, Corsi is a Harvard PhD. I have a place for him at my hog farm, of course.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 7:27 AM
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OK: "its", bitches.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 7:28 AM
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I can't express how happy I am at this news. Corsi is a grade-A sonofabitch and his misery makes me happy. I don't think I could manage genuine pleasure if he was in serious physical or mental anguish, but sitting in the Third World holding cell for a few days is just peachy by my standards.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 7:49 AM
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Obviously the Luo Mafia has a hand in this. Or is it -- al Qaeda?


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 7:57 AM
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but sitting in the Third World holding cell for a few 28 days is just peachy by my standards


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:01 AM
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I don't think I could manage genuine pleasure if he was in serious physical or mental anguish

That's funny, I barely have to try at all.


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:02 AM
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if he was in serious physical or mental anguish

...I'd start masturbating.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:05 AM
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Hmm. Rule 34.


Posted by: pdf23ds | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:07 AM
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My manic depressive moods are closely aligned with the polls, and Obama has gone from being an incompetent wimp in my mind to being a mastermind.

Therefore, I am delighted to assume that his campaign was somehow actually involved in Corsi's incarceration. Think about it: If you were President Kibaki and you got a call from an aide to the next president of the United States, wouldn't you take it pretty seriously?

Okay, okay. On some purely abstract theoretical level, extraordinary rendition of this sort is morally wrong. But I figure Obama has raised so much money he can afford to hire a first-rate philosopher to explain why it's necessary in this circumstance.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:07 AM
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extraordinary rendition of this sort

He hasn't been rendered anywhere (though hope springs eternal). He's being held by the country he was in illegally.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:09 AM
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In related news, Trollblog has it's first real post up: everything you need to know about the financial scandal.

Ok, so that post was the news, where's the trolling? [Oh, yeah: JPMorgan is actually Chemical Bank after they purchased the brand. BoA (on the long slide to extinction) is the former NationsBank, formerly NoCreditforNoBody, and Wells Fargo is actually NorWest.]

As for Mr. Corsi, there's no need to be cruel, or to waste a lot of money on jailers. Just box him up and ship him back on the slow boat.

max
['Skip the airholes.']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:11 AM
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In Clearwater, arriving reporters were greeted with shouts and taunts by the crowd of about 3,000. Palin then went on to blame Katie Couric's questions for her "less-than-successful interview with kinda mainstream media." At that, Palin supporters turned on reporters in the press area, waving thunder sticks and shouting abuse. Others hurled obscenities at a camera crew. One Palin supporter shouted a racial epithet at an African American sound man for a network and told him, "Sit down, boy."

McCain is now committed to a scorched earth policy. I'm trying to think of the last time when a major-party Presidential candidate decided to sink this low. Nixon, I suppose.

Usually there's some sportsmanship once the game has been lost, even if the competition was nasty. McCain is fighting like a cornered rat, trying to send Obama into the Presidency damaged.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:12 AM
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On some purely abstract theoretical level, extraordinary rendition of this sort is morally wrong.

"Extraordinary rendition" doesn't not mean "an American arrested overseas in violation of that country's laws." It means we arrest you here and ship you somewhere else where we have plausible deniability of what happens.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:16 AM
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Why did he even go to Kenya to release his book? Seems a bit dangerous considering how popular Obama is there.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:17 AM
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McCain is fighting like a cornered rat

He's behaving like the amoral scumbag he has always been.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:17 AM
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Why did he even go to Kenya to release his book? Seems a bit dangerous considering how popular Obama is there.

This is going to be great for Corsi's brand among the wacko loony right. Captured by African Islamo-kleptocrats in the pay of the Obama campaign while he came to show solidarity with the oppressed Christians of Kenyastan, etc. etc. etc.

I'd express my pious wish that conservatives would be consistent in their hatred of illegal workers, but let's be real here.


Posted by: Tom Scudder | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:24 AM
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"Extraordinary rendition" doesn't not mean "an American arrested overseas in violation of that country's laws."

See, this is where y'all underestimate the mastermindyness of the Obama campaign. I figure they arranged for Corsi to take that trip to Kenya, probably through the use of a strategically implanted microchip.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:24 AM
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Captured by African Islamo-kleptocrats

Only ~10% of Kenyans are Muslim. Not that I expect that to register with Corsi's audience.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:27 AM
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Like Ted Kaczynski and many Unfoggetarians, Corsi is a Harvard PhD.

Rory announced last night that she's not planning to go to Harvard anymore -- "It's really only good if you want to be a doctor, a lawyer, or president, and I definitely don't want to be a lawyer or president." I suppose I could pitch it as good preparation for Unfogged commenting, too -- but it turns out Harvard is kind of pricey.
|>


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:27 AM
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19: But Kenya is an Arab part of Africa!


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:28 AM
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Keegan wants to go to Harvard, but only because of its hockey program.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:29 AM
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20 to 18.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:29 AM
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21: I was going to encourage Rory to take up hockey, but I was afraid I'd have to start wearing lipstick.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:33 AM
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9, 12: This is so bizarre to me. Obama's campaign has this beautiful documentary produced. McCain's campaign decides to flaunt it's utter contempt for the media. Hmm, how might the media react?


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:39 AM
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At that, Palin supporters turned on reporters in the press area, waving thunder sticks and shouting abuse.

"Thunder sticks"? Was this article written by a movie Indian or something? ("OBAMA SPEAKS WITH FORKED TONGUE, BUT POLLS SHOW HE ON ROAD TO TEEPEE OF GREAT CHIEF")


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:43 AM
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Thunder sticks.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:44 AM
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25: Your confusion reflects a common misunderstanding about the media.

Liberals have taken a big step by being willing to strongly voice legitimate complaints regarding the media. We'll know that liberals really have arrived when they stop being timorous about making illegitimate complaints. That's what the media respond to.

Granted, McCain is probably doomed this year, but the Republicans are laying the groundwork for years to come. The secret to Bush's success with the media and failure with everything else is that his primary tactics involve intimidation and willful ignorance - useful vs. the media, not so useful in diplomacy, war and emergency management.



Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:49 AM
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28 was to 24, except I'm guessing that by-and-by, 28 will be 27.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:50 AM
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If you were President Kibaki and you got a call from an aide to the next president of the United States, wouldn't you take it pretty seriously?

It's more likely to have been that it was profoundly silly and arrogant of him to go to Kenya in the first place. African countries are, for various reasons, most of them bureaucratic and related to history as one-party states, incredibly anal about work permits, and particularly journalism visas. Corsi presumably didn't know this and never so much as considered that a foreign country might presume to check an American's visa. (It's the same sort of phenomenon which is responsible for the existence of a special, separate queue at Mumbai airport marked "Queue here if you are a British person who assumed that British people didn't require visas for India, the Raj is over you know and this is going to be expensive and humiliating for you"). Or for that matter, the CEOs of British-based internet gambling firms who take their wife and kids to Disneyland, believing that the fact that there's a Federal warrant out for their arrest doesn't mean anything.

Added to that, he was dumb enough to do the equivalent of writing "Dolly Parton: Communist Whore" and taking his holiday in Nashville. Of course he's not been given the benefit of the doubt in Kenya, and nor will he. He's against their boy.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:51 AM
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he's not been given the benefit of the doubt in Kenya, and nor will he.

This makes me all happy inside.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:55 AM
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For the record, 9 was intended entirely as a joke. I don't really think Obama arranged to have Corsi arrested.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:55 AM
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their boy.

Racist.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:55 AM
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I'm trying to think of the last time when a major-party Presidential candidate decided to sink this low. Nixon, I suppose.

In '68? This seems more like something out of the 1880's.

Usually there's some sportsmanship once the game has been lost, even if the competition was nasty.

Oh, you procedural liberal you.

I figure they arranged for Corsi to take that trip to Kenya, probably through the use of a strategically implanted microchip.

Can't the Antichrist use the incredible mindpower (or something) of the whore of the seven continents to make Corsi do things without a microchip?

max
['Works on rats!']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:56 AM
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30:African countries are, for various reasons, most of them bureaucratic and related to history as one-party states, incredibly anal about work permits...

Also many of them are a little tetchy about white folk just showing up and wandering about like they own the place. For some reason. When said white people are also loud, pushy, arrogant blowhards, it really, really gets under their skin. For the extra special sauce, don't forget to say "You can't do this to me! I'm an American!"


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:58 AM
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Totally OT, but I thought this post on gendered language might be interesting to some here.

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Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 8:59 AM
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I'm trying to think of the last time when a major-party Presidential candidate decided to sink this low.

2004?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:00 AM
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29: There an inverse of Dsquared just said: in many nations Americans (and the like, such as Australians) actually do have more rights than the locals.

There's a genre of film / news story about perfectly nice Americans who get in trouble with the local laws in horrible third-world countries and are treated badly, and in most cases all that means is that for once (against expectation) they're being treated about the way the locals routinely are. (Or as badly as the locals would be treated if they were behave the same way in the U.S.)


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:01 AM
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This seems more like something out of the 1880's.

Ma, Ma, where's Allah?
Gone to the White House, ha ha ha!


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:02 AM
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Dsquared: you're writing as though he wasn't looking for some kind of showy (but non-fatal) martyrdom on the trip. As it stands, he'll probably be shipped back to the States in a couple days or couple weeks at the worst, and even if he's kept in an air-conditioned private cell with a phone, internet access, and satellite TV and served lemon chicken 3 meals a day, when he comes back to the States and is giving $50,000 lectures to wingnut audiences, it'll be all thumbscrews and demands that he denounce Jesus and kiss the Koran(pronounced "core ann").


Posted by: Tom Scudder | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:04 AM
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According to an AP story, they're just going to deport him sometime today - this was supposed to be the day of his book launch in Kenya.


Posted by: Jesurgislac | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:04 AM
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38 is made me laugh.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:08 AM
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40: Which is a damn shame. 'Smasher had it in 5. All I want is that asshole out of the country until Nov. 5, so he can't stink up TV interviews for just a little while longer. Is that too much to ask?


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:09 AM
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Wow, something I know something about. Many of you get this just right, and dsquared exactly.

There are desperately poor people in Kenya, so there might be someone willing to take a bribe and lie about Obama. I wouldn't rule it out - desperate people do desperate things.

But, a a general rule, most Kenyans who know about international politics pretty much dislike Britain and like the US. They were a British colony, and the major corporations that exist in Kenya today such as Dole who pushed people off their land sell to Europe, not the US.

Add to this the fact that Obama's father was pretty respected in Kenya and, again, dsquared nails it.

Shoot, may desperate Kenya's think Obama is going to be their guardian angel swooping down to personally rescue them from their misery. Obviously that is not realistic but desperate people have non-credible dreams.

As for their judicial system? Oh man. You do NOT, and I mean NOT, want to get involved with that. If you do you better hope you have incredible pull because otherwise they can and will do whatever they want with you. Believe me, when you are there you stay OUT of local politics and you make sure everyone with any power knows you are NO threat, you totally support them, and will leave quietly if asked.

You DON'T eff around with the man in Kenya.

So Corsi could be spending his 28 days in a beach bungalow on the coast, or in some hidden hell hole beyond description.


Posted by: Tripp | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:10 AM
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We need to find some way to implement this brilliant innovation in the Unfogged comments. It's a drunk email prevention measure, brought to you by google, so you know it's got that extra googley mojo. Look for the iPhone applet in a month or so.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:13 AM
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44: What, and lose some of our best comments?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:15 AM
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#38. "The party of radicchio, Ramadan, and rebellion!"


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:15 AM
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The NYT was apparently unable to confirm the report that he would be deported.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:15 AM
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It IS possible Corsi miscalculated. I suspect a lot of wingnuts (up to and including President Bush) are in for some surprises when they try and throw their weight around: will people really go out of their way to accommodate someone with ties to the current admin at the risk of angering the future President? Maliki's endorsement of Obama's troop-withdrawal plan was maybe the first instance.

I just spent a bit of time looking for D-squared's crooked timber post on the transition from Blair to Brown in the UK, centered on the question of who would kiss up to whom, but couldn't find it.


Posted by: Tom Scudder | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:30 AM
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Third World holding cell for a few daysmonths is just peachy by my standards.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:33 AM
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"The party of radicchio, Ramadan, and rebellion!"

"Argula, abortion and the Antichrist!"

max
['Future documentary title: Who Shot Bob McManus?']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:35 AM
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According to Mark Summers' Rum, Romanism, & Rebellion: The Making of A President, 1884:

"In 1856, a whispering campaign had imputed homosexuality to James Buchanan; in 1872, Horace Greeley was accused of endorsing 'free love and free farms and all that.' The attacks on Tilden in 1876 were better veiled...one newspaperman [claimed] that the candidate was 'the most utter old spinster that was ever bent on Presidential masturbation...'"

Also, Winfield Scott Hancock was accused of "eating a bucket of cocks."


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:38 AM
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Also, Winfield Scott Hancock was accused of "eating a bucket of cocks."

Well sure it's believable, it's right there in his name.


Posted by: Ubu Imperator | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:50 AM
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Also, Winfield Scott Hancock was accused of "eating a bucket of cocks."

How many, approximately?


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:57 AM
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Horace Greeley was accused of endorsing 'free love and free farms and all that.'

I would totally volunteer for a candidate running on this platform.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 9:57 AM
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Very big deal

|>


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 10:04 AM
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Hmm, how might the media react?

Well, NPR juxtaposed Obama/Ayers with McCain/Keating yesterday. Fair and balanced!


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 10:06 AM
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55; Oh, that's wonderful. What's the practical upshot likely to be, though -- a stay pending appeal, I assume?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 10:08 AM
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The Circuit has been surprisingly adamant about the availability of release as a remedy. But the jackasses in the government will never admit that the most important step towards getting prisoners out of GTMO is the US taking in these exact prisoners.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 10:15 AM
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I think this is probably the first time the Kenya Police gave anyone a pony.

There's an argument that it would have been better to let the guy proceed to the Kenyan/Somali borderlands, on the off chance that he'd try to bribe the wrong cattle thief and get his head blown off. But these are risk-averse times.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 10:15 AM
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55 is very good news.


Posted by: Mary Catherine | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 10:32 AM
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What's the practical upshot likely to be

Another Uighur-run halal Chinese restaurant in my neighborhood?


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 10:36 AM
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The Kenyan government really wants to kiss up to the US, but as noted, in times like this their question is "whom to kiss, the old boss or the new boss or stall and see who wins first."

There are ethnic groups in Kenya (man they hate being called tribes) so they are not homogeneous, and the poor are generally pissed at the bosses, but nobody especially hates the US or Bush.


Posted by: Tripp | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 10:46 AM
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As a human being with a soul, I find this story hilarious. As a journalist who often travels on a tourist visa, not so much.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 10:46 AM
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Thank you, God! I'm going to buy hay for my new pony now.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 10:53 AM
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As a journalist who often travels on a tourist visa

Don't do that in Africa. Seriously, don't.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 11:25 AM
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65 Applies to pretty much anyplace you'd aren't willing to accept some time in custody. I can understand the appeal of avoiding official scrutiny. but any journalistic activity and they've got you dead to rights if they want to hold you.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 11:40 AM
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Why the assumption that Ginger Yellow, as a journalist who often travels on a tourist visa, doesn't know about the risks to journalists who travel on tourist visas?


Posted by: washerdreyer | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 11:46 AM
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We're patronizing like that.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 11:48 AM
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Hooray for 55. In regards to 57, the attorney for the Uighurs I heard on ,a href="http://www.thetakeaway.org/archives/2008/10/07/9">the radio this morning didn't say directly, but seemed pretty sure the remedy would be stayed if they won today.


Posted by: washerdreyer | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 11:50 AM
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We're patronizing like that.

Wouldn't be unfogged otherwise, would it.

Seriously, 66 was mean in a `surely that applies lots of places', no attempt to comment on GY's depth of reflection on these things.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 11:59 AM
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anyplace you'd aren't willing to accept some time in custody

That would be everywhere.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:00 PM
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That would be everywhere.

I'm sure that's the answer for lot's of people. Journalists are a funny lot though. I met a photog who told me his criteria for war-zone stuff was that he'd stay so long as he estimated his chance of getting killed at 10% or less. Maybe just bravada, but still, a sign of different priorities.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:04 PM
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lots of people. I'm not sure what lot's of people would do.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:05 PM
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I don't know if GY's been to Africa on a tourist visa doing journalism, but my advice was specifically about African states. Different countries take it more or less seriously, but African states (especially former British colonies) more seriously than most.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:08 PM
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|| Here is an excellent comment from the thoughtful conservative (anti-Bush) commenter Daniel Larison regarding Obama's personality...this is exactly what I've felt about him for some time now but have had difficulty expressing.

I'd like to think that I have also more or less recognized the same thing that David Sirota saw in Obama months and months ago, which is his avoidance of confronting power and his aversion to risk. His preference for consensus-building and his habit of using conciliatory language, which annoyed so many progressives early on, show him to be the opposite of a radical; he has no interest in getting at the root of our current problems, but generally wants cosmetic changes and wants to tweak how things are managed. Flipping on the FISA legislation and signing off on the bailout are just two prominent examples from this year of how he yields to establishment consensus; his less-than-outspoken opposition to the war inside the Senate, his half-a-loaf withdrawal plan and his endorsement of the Iraq Study Group proposals are more examples of his desire, as Kass says, to go along and get along.

The irony is that it is the exact opposite criticism from "Obama is a crazy hippie terrorist socialist". Instead, Obama is an innately cautious status-quo type, which is evident in his composed personality and calm affect. For just this reason, criticisms of him as radical are unlikely to gain the necessary traction, regardless of past acquaintances. The question to me is whether he will be too cautious during times that demand more radicalism. But his background is so unusual for an American president that the "too cautious" criticism will likely not gain much traction either, at least for a while.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:21 PM
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The question to me is whether he will be too cautious during times that demand more radicalism.

Yes. Next question?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:23 PM
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The question to me is whether he will be too cautious during times that demand more radicalism.

That's an Atrios question, I'm afraid.

I really hate Democrats, you know.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:23 PM
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75: Robert Kuttner's Obama's Challenge book appears to be on this same theme. I've been considering reading it.


Posted by: washerdreyer | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:26 PM
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75 -- I stopped reading Daniel Larison once I realized he is a neo-confederate (he really is, you can look it up).


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:29 PM
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YOu don't want to go to the US to do journalism on a tourist visa either, believe me. And getting a fucking journalism is a lot more hassle than it used to be to get into East Germany.


Posted by: Nworb Werdna | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:30 PM
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Isn't Kaczyinski a Michigan Ph D?


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:45 PM
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Yglesias: Given Obama's lead in the polls a group of uncommitted voters is going to be a disproportionately right-of-center group of people.

Is that true? It certainly follows from the fact they're not currently supporting Obama that they're less Obama supporting than the median voter, since the average voter supports currently Obama, but I'm not sure if these two are the same thing. I put the same question in Yglesias's comments, but I'm more likely to get an answer here.


Posted by: washerdreyer | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:46 PM
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"since the average voter supports currently Obama" s/b "since the median voter currently supports Obama"


Posted by: washerdreyer | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:47 PM
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Is there a way of averaging voters, rather than just finding a median? You'd need to assign a quantity to each voter's support, then add up the quantities and divide by the number of voters. The way you do with "average weight" for example, so that the average and the median can be different.

I suppose this belongs on Standpipe's blog.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 12:59 PM
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79: If this were 1859 then that would be more relevant. I'm pro-Lincoln and pro-Civil War, but find myself more sympathetic today to radical localism. The paleocons are an intellectually valuable movement.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:01 PM
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79: PGD's function here is monitor Ron Paul zealots, Hillary supporters and other disreputable figures and report back if they say anything interesting.

I, too, am a neo-Confederate, after a fashion. I think the fuckers ought to be forced out. (We can let apostropher and his state back in if they vote correctly next month.)


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:03 PM
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I, too, am a neo-Confederate, after a fashion. I think the fuckers ought to be forced out. (We can let apostropher and his state back in if they vote correctly next month.)

See? Politicalfootball also understands that the day of centralized rule has passed, and regional autonomy is the wave of the future.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:06 PM
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85 -- "happened to be on the right side of the Iraq war" does not equal "intellectually valuable."


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:07 PM
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84: Is there a way of averaging voters, rather than just finding a median?

I'm thinking that you could average McCain voters with a giant blender set to "puree." I'm sure every properly equipped hog farm has an instrument like this.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:18 PM
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I really think that we've crossed a threshold in the last 7 years or so, and that Democratic mix of internationalism, neoliberalism, procedural democracy, and business as usual has definitively failed. Obama's election won't change that -- the hard right is sharpening their knives for him right now. (I'm starting to believe that there are people in the Republican Party who are trying to throw the election just so that it will be the Democrats who have to bite the bullet. But that's crazy talk.)

In short, maybe PGD's got something. I was willing to play the Democratic game right until the bailout moment came -- they really had nothing much to offer and barely even tried.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:18 PM
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mystery person at 88: There's no "happened to" about it. It's inherent in the ideology. The same reason they currently "happen to" be on the right side of the Russia situation / NATO expansion, Iran, Pakistan, etc. Their intellectual value comes from having a non-left rhetoric with which to question imperial expansion abroad and executive centralization at home. As well as questioning capitalist consumerism in general, because they're one of the few movements seriously influenced by non-capitalist ideologies.

The far left has been moving further and further toward localisms and questioning large institutions, this is the same tendency on the right.

I actually think this localistic thinking has dangerously sentimental sentimental tendencies and would be open to much question if it got really powerful, but as of now it strikes me as a very valuable counterbalance to the overly centralized and inhuman scale of our major institutions.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:20 PM
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following up on 91: by both paleocon and far-left standards, even the Marxist left can be understood as an overly capitalist-influenced movement, since it doesn't question the primacy of growth.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:23 PM
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I was willing to play the Democratic game right until the bailout moment came -- they really had nothing much to offer and barely even tried.

Yeah, that was my tipping point as well, no matter how much Sifu Tweety wants me to trust that Barney Frank is looking out for my interests. I'm really only voting against Republicans at this point. Nothing about the Democratic Party is remotely confidence-inspiring any longer. They're part of the problem, not in any way a solution. Just a slightly less offensive problem than the alternative.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:40 PM
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I explain the collapse of western civilization at my URL, BTW. I'm recruiting volunteer trolls as we speak. Unfoggetarians are welcome.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:45 PM
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Nothing about the Democratic Party is remotely confidence-inspiring any longer.

What's bizarre to me is that people found anything to inspire confidence any time in recent memory.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:50 PM
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91 -- 88 was me. If I squint just right I can kinda sorta see your logic, but let's be real. As soon as anyone who describes themselves as a "paleocon" or "neoconfederate" gets anywhere near an actual lever of power, I'm running for the hills and I think most everyone here would too.

I think we can be antiwar, anti-imperialism, and anti-consumerist without having to bring in a bunch of racists and gold standard nuts into the tent, but maybe that's just me.

That's not an endorsement of the Democratic party, btw.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:51 PM
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I see your point. Different people in the movement, though. I would vote for Andrew Bacevich for President, and he's sort of a paleocon. Check out his latest book .


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 1:53 PM
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It's been a long time since I had confidence, but now hope is diminishing.

I expect a big electoral triumph in November, followed by futility and/or betrayal.

The thing that rankles most is that the Democratic pros always explain their losing strategies with an air of cool superiority (on up to withering arrogance). And they even pretend to be Machiavellian, when actually they're talking about continual accommodation which always dodges a decisive fight.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:07 PM
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Their intellectual value comes from having a non-left provincial, xenophobic rhetoric with which to question imperial expansion abroad and executive centralization at home.

Fixed that.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:07 PM
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I expect a big electoral triumph in November, followed by futility and/or betrayal.

This is a product of insufficiently low expectations. I think it will be huge when Obama fails to bomb Iran, for instance.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:09 PM
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Aaaand the Dow closes down 5%
How's that Mavericky deregulation workin' for ya?


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:12 PM
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Events are now moving so fast that at the moment the bailout doesn't matter. The banking system may have collapsed completely by the time Paulson gets around to spending the money. At least the Treasury will be too busy with their loot to distract the Fed from trying to save us from epic disaster.

I think the problem the Dems in Congress had is that everyone in Congress who knows anything about finance and banking was a wholly-owned-subsidiary of Wall Street. The only alternate plan floated by the Democrats was pathetic, and it wasn't even their plan -- it was some half-assed idea by the former head of the FDIC. If the Democrats get back control of the executive, they might have some independent plan-making capacity. DeLong and Krugman both had administration jobs once upon a time, for example.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:13 PM
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To restate what I was trying to say, it's gone beyond thinking that Democrats are weak on policy to wondering whether they're viable. Obama attained electoral viability, and you have to respect him for that, but his post-partisan schtick makes me think that he'll be incapable of governing. Today's Republicans aren't people who can be negotiated with, and to all intents and purposes they want to kill him. (CF. McCain's creepy "Who is Obama?" speech, and the crowd reaction).


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:15 PM
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Guys,

Yeah, the best you can get right now is evolution, not revolution. Be patient though. Your time is coming. I know, it sucks to be ahead of the curve.

Personally I think the US government is remarkably
stable at avoiding revolution, which is disappointing to some but comforting to others.


Posted by: Tripp | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:16 PM
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The world will be utterly different by January. I don't think it makes much sense to have expectations.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:18 PM
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We've been through this before, Tripp.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:18 PM
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I was told that the bailout was necessary so that there would be a market for corporate paper. Now it seems that the bailout is to be followed up by a totally unrelated bailout which will create a market for corporate paper.


Posted by: CN | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:18 PM
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At this point, I think policy comes first, killing the Republicans and salting the earth second. The times look as propitious as they've been in 40 years for some kind of fundamental reform, and there's about a 50% chance that Obama will have a window to do something really impressive in his first 100 days in office. So the focus has to be on policy. But that window will close very, very, very quickly and will not come again, so we'll know by May of next year just how disappointed we should be.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:22 PM
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the bailout is to be followed up by a totally unrelated bailout

And there will be further bailouts beyond that. They're going to bleed every one of us dry in order to keep the rotten fucking financial institutions afloat, rather than letting them fail and using the money to help the rest of the country weather it while new ones are built. Walt is right in 105, and the Democrats, almost to a person, are too chickenshit to do anything about it except to grab their ankles and shovel ever more money into the banking maw.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:24 PM
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Their intellectual value comes from having a non-left provincial, xenophobic rhetoric

actually, the rhetoric around places like the American Conservative magazine is neither provincial nor xenophobic. It's an intellectual choice for localism, similiar to what one sees on the far left right now (although for different reasons). Both provincialism and xenophobia make for a population that is easily propagandized and stampeded into foreign wars.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:39 PM
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From my limited exposure to it, I will admit that I have found American Conservative fairly non-sucky (given what it is).

Since I do plan to keep my exposure limited, I am compelled to mute my skepticism and accept your report at face value.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 2:59 PM
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grab their ankles and shovel ever more money into the banking maw

Are their butts the banking maw or are their feet the shovels?


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 3:15 PM
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They're holding the shovels with their butts. I think.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 3:17 PM
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They're holding the shovels with their butts. I think.

That can't make for efficient shoveling technique, can it?


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 3:18 PM
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They're virtuosos.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 3:20 PM
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I don't think McCain is enjoying his role as sacrificial lamb as much as he was led to believe he would.


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 3:38 PM
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salting the earth second

Please don't salt the earth.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 3:40 PM
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re: 117

I find it tastes bland without it.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 3:43 PM
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Today, the House Oversight Committee discovered that, just one week after the federal government bailed out insurance giant AIG, company executives went on a retreat to a luxury resort. The executives spent nearly $500,000 on manicures, facials, pedicures, and massages, among other things.

Thank you Nancy Pelosi.

Or whoever the fuck it was.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:02 PM
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Now, now. I'm sure getting bailed out is very stressful.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:09 PM
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Unless those "other things" include meals and wine that's a lot of money for paws and claws. Are you sure that isn't accountant speak for hookers and blow?


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:12 PM
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Pkease, someone come along and explain that this is all completely normal and the way it should be. Some Chicago school dude. Because, it really is.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:15 PM
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Just a post to note that REP_WTA is bid at 22.5 and offered at 24.7, DEM_WTA at 76.2 and 77.8 going into the debates. Matters because the last prices were 24.9 and 76.2 respectively - the typical movement during debates is of the order 1-2% and therefore the potential bid-ask bounce is something to be taken into account when looking at the effect of the debates. Just another service from the Davies Internet Institute of Market Microstructure.

Also, watch the crawler you bastids. So far, the pundosphere has called two out of two debates "ohyaaah ithinkthatwashonourseven, or maybe the republicans won a bit", ludicrously counterfactually, and all by not watching the crawler. The worm doesn't lie.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:19 PM
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This is all completely normal and the way it should be. The marginal product of labor of your average Unfogged commenter is, let's be honest, pretty low, so it's both economically efficient and socially optimal for you to make your piddling little salaries. AIG executives, because of their superior productivity, can generate economic value at rates of literally a million dollars an hour. Really, we should be grateful.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:23 PM
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AIG was bailed out before the Congress bailout, wasn't it? Or did the Congress bailout have to happen for the AIG bailout to work out? This is not a defense of Congress, incidentally.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:30 PM
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Also, that is not to say that either or all of the bailouts will ultimately work out. They might not.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:31 PM
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$500,000 on manicures, facials, pedicures, and massages, among other things

Pikes. Accept no substitutes.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:33 PM
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AIG was bailed out by the Fed. No Congressional involvement.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:35 PM
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Yeah, it wasn't Nancy Pelosi, dammit. Who? Bernanke? I have a voodoo doll that I need to initialize.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:45 PM
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What time is the stupid debate? Will McCain try the wink magic? Word is that it will be all gutter, all the time.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:47 PM
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And the Fed got decent terms for the bailout (warrants for 80% of the company, lots of collateral, and a high interest rate on the $85B loan).

The Congress thing was different and much more likely to be useless and hugely expensive.


Posted by: water moccasin | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:49 PM
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At least now that the bailout has been taken care of we aren't hearing urgent screams of panic from the government and the talking heads about the crashing stock market and the disappearance of credit. Things are back to normal. Except that the stock market continues to crash and credit continues to disappear.

I want to be a poster on the trollblog!


Posted by: CN | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:57 PM
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email emersonj at gmail dot com. For the moment I'll just have guest posters.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 5:58 PM
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I propose the creation of a new entity, known as the Credit Immobilier, to keep credit from disappearing.


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 6:01 PM
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For the first time in my professional life, I am seized briefly by the desire for an African government to be more irrationally corrupt and arbitrary than it is. Considerably so, actually.


Posted by: Timothy Burke | Link to this comment | 10- 7-08 6:13 PM
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I've never done journalism in Africa, and probably won't in the near future. Most of the places I go to are developed, "friendly" countries, but I do make sure I get the proper visas for Russia.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 6:25 AM
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Wow. Going to a third world country to mock a national hero. WTF did this moron expect?


Posted by: Isaac | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 9:22 AM
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John,

We've been through this before, Tripp.

The revolution discussion? Yeah, but face it, if the Civil War didn't spark a successful revolution what makes you think corrupt politicians starting to bleed us dry will do it?

We gotta be hurting real bad, and by that I mean non-poor kids dying before this tinder can be lit.


Posted by: Tripp | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 9:42 AM
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We've been through the wise old Tripp counseling patience and gradualism thing before.

As far as I know I'm older than you, and I've been waiting for 40 years or so already. I don't expect to see much good happen during my lifetime, and on several major issues (militarization, authoritarianism, and social equality) I've seen regress rather than progress. I'm just hoping for Obama to stop the bleeding, and I'm not confident that he understands the opposition and the circumstances well enough to do that.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 9:48 AM
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enhanced interrogation at git mo


Posted by: neville | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 9:51 AM
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Who has money for a trip like that and "thousand dollar bills" to throw around?

It really is always about "follow the money", isn't it?

Who is paying for this? I bet it ain't coming out of Corsi's piggy bank. I bet Corsi is being funded by someone. Who could it be???


Posted by: roooth | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 10:29 AM
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http://americaphile.blogspot.com/2008/10/terror-on-ballot.html

IT IS CLEAR NOW THE DEFEATOCRAT PARTY HAS BECOME THE HAVEN OF TERRORISTS!!!!!!

A Connemara ["FLNTARBBHAR ISHNNUTMRWQS DRUIMTSSH!!!!"] woman now looks certain to be elected a Senator in the State of Maine in America in November.

There are predictions that Margaret Craven [BWAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!] whose maiden name is Connolly - from [LIBTARD] in Carna will easily win a seat for the Democrats in the 35 seat State Parliament.

It's understood she would be the only Irish born State Senator in the United States.

THIS MINISTRY HAS BEEN FEARLESSLY AND CONSISTENTLY EXPOSING THE MACHINATIONS OF GURU MAGGOTS, IN NEW YORK, IN SARAH PALIN'S OWN ALASKA, AND NOW MAINE!!!!!! TERROR CELLS ACROSS AMERICA!!!!!

JUST AS SARAH PALIN HAS BEEN EXPOSING THE DEMLIB LOVE AFFAIR WITH WEATHERMAN TERRORIST BILL AYRES, THE GOP MUST NOW EXPOSE THE DEMLIB/GURU MAGGOT CONNECTION!!!!!

MAINE NEEDS TO BE TOUCHED BY THE POWER OF THE GREAT DEBORAH ANOININTING!!!!

YES!!!! YES!!!!!! YES!!!!!!!

MAINE MUST JOIN THE REST OF AMERICA IN REJECTING FENIANISM, DESPOTISM, FIANNA FAIL, ALCOHOLISM, SUPERSTITION, THE AOH, BIGOTRY, IDOLATRY, THE WOLFE TONES, IGNORANCE, GURU MAGGOTS, PATTERNS, GLUE-SNIFFING, ENYA (NEW AGE), INCEST, THE INQUISTION, BUCKFAST, JESUITS, DOMESTIC ABUSE, TERRORISM AND THE MASS!!!!!

WE NEED A SOUL-WINNING, MOUNTAIN-MOVING, DEVIL-KICKING, PIAPS-DEFEATING, AMERICA-STRENGTHENING, RAPTURE-READY REVIVAL ACROSS THE LAND!!!!!

GET THEM READY FOR THE COMING RAPTURE!!!!!!!

RAPTURE!!!!!!! RAPTURE!!!!!!! RAPTURE!!!!!!!

FUCK YOU, PIAPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

BWAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!


Posted by: RALPH | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 1:20 PM
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When was the exact point where parody and reality became indistinguishable? I blinked when it happened, but I'm pretty sure it was a couple of years ago.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 1:22 PM
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139,

John, there has been great good since you were born. Don't ignore that. For one thing the world has you in it, speaking for the downtrodden. That is a good thing.

We started seriously polluting our country but stopped in time. Literacy rates are way up. So is college attendance. Racism, while not gone, is down. Women are empowered. People live longer, and better too. Starvation is down. Medicine is up. Non-drug crimes are down.

Yeah, it is not perfect and it is trending downwards but geeze, we are better off than we were. We need to hold on to much during the revolution and the transition from the end of the industrial age.

There is a revolution ahead, with tough times, no doubt, but we still are better than we used to be. No doubt about that.


Posted by: Tripp | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 1:36 PM
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I doubt it, Tripp. I'm glad you're happy, I guess.

Nothing you said addressed militarization, authoritarianism, and social equality. I don't trust Obama to change much.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 1:44 PM
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John,

I'm generally a not happy person. I'm a worry-wart. Over the years I've learned to try to counter that.

So 'look on the bright side' doesn't work well with me, and I don't know why I tried it with you, but take heart old Son. Personally I feel the worst when no one seems to share my worry and I start feeling better when more people start sharing it, and finally more people are sharing it.

Buck up. At least now instead of being frustrated at our ignorant fellow-citizens we can be angry at mother nature and the truly bad guys.


Posted by: Tripp | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 1:51 PM
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Could it be that the people in charge are taking the problem seriously instead of being ideological? Could it be that Krugman was right in having a nonzero amount of trust in what Paulson would do when he got his hands on 6 months' worth of tax revenues? Krugman is encouraged.


Posted by: CN | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 3:37 PM
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Conceivably Paulson has dimly realized that his Bushworld home will be gone in four months, and that he's going to have to live in Obamaworld after that.

I occasionally wonder what Bush had to do with all this. One suspects is that he was lying with his head under the covers and whimpering.

Goldman Sachs seems likely to be one of the winners of this whole episode, even if there aren't very many.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 10- 8-08 3:42 PM
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Now, the really cool step would be for Obama to intervene on behalf of an American citizen languishing in a foreign jail.

Imagine the contrast: Corsi foaming at the mouth (as usual) and Obama's people explaining that, hey, even scumbags are fellow citizens, and words will never hurt me.

And the Nutroots trying to understand that Corsi has been a left-wing Obama-phile plant all along, and that the whole Swiftboat thing was an elaborate left wing plot to . . . well, to do something nefarious!


Posted by: jim | Link to this comment | 10- 9-08 1:12 AM
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149: Nah, they'd just read it as confirmation that Obama had him picked up in the first place.

I wonder if there are any really good essays by Corsi on the need to deal punitively with illegals and undocumented workers.


Posted by: Tom Scudder | Link to this comment | 10- 9-08 10:42 AM
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Also, apparently he's already been deported.


Posted by: Tom Scudder | Link to this comment | 10- 9-08 10:44 AM
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Fuck you Apostropher!!!!!!!!!!!!


Posted by: Termin8ter | Link to this comment | 10-10-08 8:22 PM
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