Monthly Archives: September 2008

Hat Tip To Gingersnaps & Jennifer (Appalachian Greens)

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Yikes.

I just watched this kid named Adam Putnam speak on Hardball.  He seems pretty sharp.  He has an R after his name.  Anyone know more about him?

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Psssssst. Hey, Wake Up

Please please someone ask Hobbs or Gill or ANYONE supporting this woman’s selection as VP candidate how they can still think shes qualified.  Good Lord, people, Couric LOBBED the ball in slow motion, and Palin blew it.  C’mon, guys, seriously, what gives?

EDITED TO ADD:  Over at Ezra’s house, i saw the following comment regarding this interview and Sarah Palin:

It turns out that it’s a lot easier to be a superstar in local politics in a small state. Easier if you build up undeserved cred for integrity by bashing the non-moving targets in your own party, and easier still if you’re promoted from within so quickly that no one has time to seriously assess your performance.

Palin would have done a slow fade over a few years in Alaska had she had a chance (and she probably will yet). Were it not for the desperation of the McCain campaign and her suitability in two key areas that needed to be addressed, the national party would have watched, waited, and eventually concluded that she’s not really cut out for a high national profile.

But there was no time for all that, and so they had to discover along with the rest of us that she’s not even moderately conversant on the important topics of the day–and worse, that her political skills aren’t as formidable as they appeared on a smaller stage with weaker opponents. She’s no more prepared for the stress of campaigning than she is for the job itself, and it’s making her answers even more vacuous and confused than they might have been. It’s no wonder they’re terrified of letting her speak.

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FGF- Oh, Little Gnome

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New Technology

Would someone please notify the McCain camp that Circuit City has a few things on their shelves that might help them multitask.  Tell you what, lets spring for some cell phones, a fax machine, and laptop and at least a dial up connection to the tubes for them if they can’t find money in their budget on their own.  I won’t even get into video-conferencing and texting.

No need to drop everything and fly into Washington to bring his considerable influence to bear on the House Republicans.  Call em up!

Then, go debate Obama in Mississippi.

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$25 Billion Here, $700 Billion There

Pretty soon you’re talking about real money.

My mother used to tell me “you’re worrying about pennies while the dollars fly out the window.”  I’ve been trying to apply that to the current economic concerns of this country, and, well, I can’t do it.  But I reserve the right to come back later and tie it in.

Instead, I’d like to point out that while we were all focused on The Bailout, a 25 billion dollar “aid package” for Detroit automakers passed in the House yesterday.  Information is a bit sketchy at the moment, but i can’t wait to know the details.  What, if any, stipulations were attached?  Sure, neither Party wants to deny Michigan a damn thing right now, since its a huge “battleground state”, but, apologies to my late Mom, I am very worried about those pennies.

25 Billion.  Its being touted as low interest loans to help automakers re-tool to build hybrid cars.  Great.  But I have some questions.  Were labor a part of this negotiation?  Is CEO pay addressed?  How about security in the (likely) event that those loans are not repaid in a timely manner?

I want to get into this today, but if someone out there knows more than i do about this particular bill, I’d love it if you would catch me up.

More later….

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A Crisis Of Leadership

If there was ever a clearer illustration of why the Republican brand has tanked, I don’t think I’ve seen it.  It seems the Republican caucus wants no part of this bailout package, and anyone paying attention should know why.

They do not lead.

Public opinion on the proposed bailout is split, with more people against it than for it.  It is a complicated matter, one that cannot be boiled down to a catchy slogan that people can recite easily or slap on their bumpers.  If you have no experience keeping your constituents informed on why you made a particular vote on a particular issue, helping the nation avert a total economic meltdown may not be the issue upon which to cut your teeth.  If you have not been transparent in the past, it won’t look like transparency, it will look like pandering.  In short, if you haven’t really lead your people, but merely gauged their opinions and took the path of least resistance, you don’t have the tools in your bag to be of much help.

I’m all for a bailout, provided that we, also known as The Collective, approach this process as if the shoe were on the other foot.  If, for some reason, the United States Treasury were to approach the banking and finance industry for an emergency loan, I’m pretty sure that they, having the upper hand, or leverage, if you prefer, would ensure that they received, at a minimum, the following:

1.  Control over how the money was spent.

2.  A stake in the “company.”  Percentages can be determined later.

3.  A healthy return on their investment.

4.  A hedge fee for making the loan in the first place.

Approach it as a business deal.  Have Congress announce that it will provide a bailout measure to calm nervous investors.  Explain that in a business transaction of that size, due diligence is required.  Go home and explain to your constituents what is at stake if we do nothing, then lead them, regardless of what impact that decision has on your chances of re-election.  That, my friends, is leadership.

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