Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The Nightowl Newswrap

Oh, Honey! We are anything but bored! You and the rest of the cast of the Wasilla Hillbillies took care of that! Sarah Palin mulled a cask of whine to go with the cheese that's been aging since McCain picked her ignorant ass and lashed out at 'bored, anonymous, pathetic bloggers who lie' in her latest histrionic screed against the media. How rude of her to turn on Red State and the rest of her fan-boys like that.

Not that she couldn't handle the job, or at least grow into it...after all, she's whip-smart Pentagon Spokesman Geoff Morrell gave Michelle Obama a hell of a promotion today in a press briefing. He committed a slip of the tongue and announced her as a nominee for Undersecretary of Defense for Policy. Reaction from the assembled press corps prompted an immediate correction.

Obama sets the rules President-elect Obama told his former colleagues that if Congress passes a resolution blocking release of the second half of the financial bailout funds he will veto it. Until today, an Obama veto of a so-called disapproval resolution had been discussed as a theoretical possibility. But the promise made to the Democratic caucus represents a firm stand on behalf of an extension of the $350 billion in Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) funds. The original TARP legislation required the president to specifically request the second half of the funds. Congress then has fifteen days to disapprove of the request or else the money is dispersed. If Obama vetoes the disapproval, Congress would need a two-thirds majority to override that veto to prevent the money from being spent. "I was glad that he said that," said Lieberman, an independent who still caucuses with Democrats, of the veto threat. "He made an appeal," he said, arguing that Obama "really needs this extension of the TARP money."

They will kick and fuss for a day and a half, but it's a common error Obama's nominee to be Treasury Secretary had an error on his taxes when he worked for the IMF and had to pay self-employment taxes. The taxes have been paid, and there are no remaining issues to be resolved. Here I feel I must insert a personal anecdote. I did the taxes for my husband for the five years he owned and operated a residential contracting company after he left the Air Force. I made the same errors he did three years running, and the CPA who lived down the block and checked my work didn't catch them either. I had to make the same correction, both to an employees taxes that I underpaid and our own self employment taxes. The person at the IRS office in Mission, KS (who was pleasant, affable and helpful, by the way) told me it happens all the time. Soooo...

Howler monkeys who lose their minds over Doug Lute keeping his gig need to keep it away from me He is exactly the guy we want. He is staying in his position, but the mission changes as does who he will be answering to. Without telling tales out of school, just let me say that Doug Lute (and his wife) are two of the finest people who ever trod the sod of this planet, and he is a man we want in that position, and I am not saying any more, but I won't be entertaining any trashing of him or the decision to keep him, either. You have no fucking idea the debt this country - this world - owes that man.

Say it with me now: "charm offensive" So Barack Obama went to dinner at George Will's house tonight for dinner with Will, David Brooks and Bill Kristol. Good. I have a hunch that if any swaying of opinion was done, it was him swaying them. Or at least making it more difficult for the conductors of the wingnut chorus to find their tempo.

Again with the much ado about nothing When 49 of the 50 Attorneys General got together and looked at the actual incidents of internet sexual predation of minors, they discovered that the problem has been waaaayyyy overblown. Bullying among peers, both online and off, is a much more serious problem. "This shows that social networks are not these horribly bad neighborhoods on the Internet," said John Cardillo, chief executive of Sentinel Tech Holding, which maintains a sex offender database and was part of the task force. "Social networks are very much like real-world communities that are comprised mostly of good people who are there for the right reasons."

Good! It strokes Dick Cheney's fur the wrong way that he New York Times won Pulitzers for exposing the unconstitutional violations of civil liberties that his administration routinely engaged in.