Monday, September 8, 2008

The Nightowl Newswrap

Are they keeping her muzzled because she's going to be a gaffe machine? She showed her utter ignorance about the issues this weekend, speaking to an adoring throng in Colorado, she totally blew it when trying to explain the Fannie/Freddie bailout. She said that they had "gotten too big and too expensive to the taxpayers." How wrong could she be? They companies were not, before the bailout, taxpayer funded! Economists and analysts pounced. "You would like to think that someone who is going to be vice president and conceivable president would know what Fannie and Freddie do," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "These are huge institutions and they are absolutely central to our country's mortgage debt. To not have a clue what they do doesn't speak well for her, I'd say." The M$M, however, talked about how maverick-y she is. And aren't her glasses snazzy?

Is he a "maverick" or is he just a vindictive prick? Don't get me wrong - I am glad that Abramoff and a few other crooks are locked up, and I wish there were more of 'em behind bars for a lot longer. But a new book challenges McCain's reasons for going after Abramoff. In “The Perfect Villain: John McCain and the Demonization of Lobbyist Jack Abramoff,” journalist Gary S. Chafetz argues that McCain's motives were "pure political payback" for Abramoff having backed Ralph Reed’s effort to defeat him in the 2000 South Carolina primary, and not the high-minded crusade that he makes it out to be on the campaign trail. If we can lock up crooks like Abramoff and make McCain look like the petty, vindictive little man he really is, I consider that a two-fer.

This could help Obama with Jewish voters Michelle Obama's second cousin is the most prominent black Rabbi in the country. Rabbi Capers Funnye (pronounced fuh-NAY) is chief rabbi at the Beth Shalom B'nai Zaken Ethiopian Hebrew Congregation in southwest Chicago. He is well-known in Jewish circles for acting as a bridge between mainstream Jewry and the much smaller, and largely separate, world of black Jewish congregations.

This is a step in the right direction The FDA is set to begin posting drugs that are under investigation for safety concerns brought to the attention of the agency via complaints brought to the agency's attention by drug companies, physicians and patients. The list of drugs will be updated every three months.

GSA balks at implementing post-9/11 building building codes The new provisions, which include requiring tall office buildings to have more robust fireproofing and an extra emergency stairwell, were enacted as a result of an exhaustive federal study into the collapse of the twin towers at the World Trade Center seven years ago this week. Some of the nations largest landlords have protested the new building codes, salling the measures cost-prohibitive. Now the General Services Administration (think of them as the federal government's property management company) has thrown in with the landlords, even though they were based on a report by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, which issues recommendations for safety standards after investigating fires and other building catastrophes. “It does not take a NIST report or a rocket scientist to figure out that requiring additional exit stairs will improve overall occupant evacuation times,” David Frable, a General Services Administration fire safety engineer, wrote in a petition asking the International Code Council to rescind the changes, which go to a vote next week. “The bigger question that needs to be answered is at what economic cost to society?”

When are we going to see the M$M call McCain a LIAR? The McCain campaign must have taken a page from Goebbels. You can lie at will, you just have to keep repeating the lie - or as Herr Goebbels put it - a claim doesn't have to be true, you just have to say it enough times and it "becomes" true. The AP is gettign close to practicing journalism. They fact checked the new McCain ad the peddled the lie that Palin "stopped the bridge to nowhere" and call bullshit. Almost. I'll be happier when they start using the "L" word openly.

Did you ever stop to think--why aren't there more African Americans at the Republican National Convention? And in an Administration that only hires Republicans, don't you think there's a connection between these two facts? Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Monday there are too few black Americans in the State Department. "I have lamented that I can go into a meeting at the Department of State -- and as a matter fact I can go into a whole day of meetings at the Department of State -- and actually rarely see somebody who looks like me. And that is just not acceptable," Rice said. Now, we don't actually know if there's a Monica Goodling-type at the Department of State--but we do know this: there won't be one when a Democrat holds power at State.

Hopefully, someone will remember to actually do some work: Iraqi lawmakers end their summer break this week facing urgent tasks of approving a new election law and signing off on a still-unfinished security pact with the U.S. — key steps in laying the foundation for a lasting peace. The 275-member legislature failed last month to approve a law providing for provincial elections this fall after Kurds objected to a power-sharing arrangement for the oil-rich area around Kirkuk, which they want to incorporate into their self-ruled region in the north. U.N. and Iraqi election officials warn the balloting cannot be held this year unless parliament approves the measure quickly after it reconvenes Tuesday. I'd be surprised if elections happen--I've said it before and I'll say it again--ten years from now, US troops will have to invade Iraq and depose the al-Maliki regime.

Reaping the whirlwind in California: Four years and eleven months after Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger was swept into office in a dramatic recall, the powerful and well-heeled correctional officers' union today will target Schwarzenegger for a recall. The California Correctional Peace Officers Association will begin the process to recall the Republican governor, a spokesman said today, calling the 2003 recall "a mistake." Actually, it was a coup. It was a coup perpetrated by energy traders like Enron, and Schwarzenegger has had to run to the left to get anything done. He is a failure as a governor and a walking disgrace. Oh, and the man who was taken down in that coup? His name was Gray Davis, and Californians rose up like an ignorant mob and threw him under the bus for nothing. They have DESERVED every minute of Schwarzenegger, especially after re-electing him.

Wonder if this had something to do with Arnold canceling his convention plans We have known all along that Fred Thompson was added to the program after California Governor Arnold Schwartzenegger canceled his plans to attend. The speakers changed, but the speech didn't. They wanted Arnold to give the speech they prepared to keep him from talking about centrist politics.

Another indictment in the Abramoff imbroglio Former aide to GOP Representative John Doolittle pleaded not guilty to a 10-count federal indictment that accuses him of conspiring with Abramoff to win assistance from congressional and executive-branch officials by giving them things of value, and helping them skirt requirements to report those gifts. In what might signal an end to the preferential treatment of allowing these people to surrender themselves, Ring was arrested, and hauled into court disheveled and unshaven and wearing shorts. He entered a plea of "not guilty" and was released on his own recognizance on condition he not travel outside the D.C. metro area or have contact with potential witnesses.

Don Haskins, Barrier-Breaking Coach, Dead at 78 He changed the game of basketball forever in 1966 when he started five black players and coached his Texas Western (now U.T.E.P.) team to the NCAA championship title, defeating the University of Kentucky. “I just played my five best players,” Haskins said about the decision later, recalling the upset. “In my mind, kids were kids, and I had some that could play. “I didn’t really know until after the game and I got bushels full of hate mail how important that game was.” A common sense decision, made without thought to something that shouldn't matter anyway, changed the world, and the game of basketball.