Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

Happy Hour Roundup

* Republicans successfully blocked the DISCLOSE act today, a big blow to Obama and Dems, but Senate leaders are likely to hold another vote on it this fall, Reid spokesman Jim Manley confirms.

* Though the chances of passing it before the elections are slim indeed, Dems view the issue as a major weapon to tar the GOP as stooges of corporate interests, and another vote will allow Dems to draw a contrast on the issue closer to Election Day.

* Chuck Schumer, one of the leaders of the charge on DISCLOSE, vows to get it passed eventually, no matter how long it takes, and says the future of our democracy is at stake.

* The Republican response: The DISCLOSE fight is yet another example of how Dems have taken their eye off the ball on the economy.

* Newt Gingrich comes out against the mosque near Ground Zero, and like other mosque opponents, he argues that "they" should be ashamed for wanting to build it so near to where they attacked us.

* Joe Klein responds:

"If Newt actually believe what he claims to -- that the American way is superior -- he'd be in favor of placing the mosque near Ground Zero, as a demonstration of American freedom and tolerance."

But of course it has nothing to do with what Newt actually believes. It's all about what he has to say in order to out-pander Sarah Palin, who's raised the bar awfully high.

* Glenn Thrush catches David Plouffe suggesting that Obama's star power among new voters may not be enough to get them out to vote in the midterms.

* Dino Rossi, the GOP Senate candidate in Washington state, comes out for repeal of Wall Street reform.

* Nonstop indignities for California GOP Senate candidate Carly Fiorina! First we learn that Barbara Boxer's hair polls better.

* Then the host of the event where Fiorina announced her Latino outreach effort threw her support to Boxer.

* Great moments in journalism: The Financial Times prints an Op ed by Mort Zuckerman that rips an Obama quote out of context in a comically dishonest way to paint Obama as anti-business.

* David Obey, in one of his last important acts as a lawmaker, cites his conscience to explain his vote against funding the Afghan war.

* More Republican Senators prepare to support the New START treaty. What are they thinking? Did they forget about noted foreign policy expert Mitt Romney's warnings about how dangerous it is to our national security?

* How to end the filibuster with 51 votes.

* And Mickey Kaus comes out against private conversations.

What else is happening?

By Greg Sargent  |  July 27, 2010; 6:02 PM ET
Categories:  2010 elections , Financial reform , Foreign policy and national security , Happy Hour Roundup , Senate Dems , Senate Republicans  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: What does Sharron Angle believe about campaign finance?
Next: The Morning Plum

Comments

No big surprise about Mickey Kaus; he's always been a proponent of the Silence of the Goats.

As for the failure of the DISCLOSE act, the Dems, MoveOn, whoever needs to be ready out of the gate with an ad like this:

Visuals showing a bunch of old white guys in suits kicking back in a richly-panelled room, lighting cigars with $100 bills, laughing and joking amongst themselves. Through the gracious 10-foot-tall windows a variety of luxury automobiles can be seen on the circular drive. While the following voiceover goes on, servants come and go with drinks, etc while several trophy wives wander in and out of the scene.

Voiceover:
“There’s a lot of money being thrown around by wealthy interests in this election, through shadowy third-party groups funded by oil tycoons and the richest 1% of Americans. Most of these ads are attacking members of the Democratic majority, because it is asking those for whom the American dream has paid off most handsomely to pull their own weight and even give a little back to the country and working people who have made their wealth possible.

But they don’t want to be responsible for paying off any of the deficits we’ve run up to give them big tax breaks – they want you to do that. That’s why some of them are spending millions to put the Republican party back in power – because the government is about the only thing they don’t already own right now.

They know where their financial interest lies.

Do you?”

This stuff really is not that hard to get people to understand; you just have to connect the dots in a very obvious way and forget the hand-wringing about "class warfare."

Which is why we won't see any ads like this one.

Posted by: JennOfArk | July 27, 2010 6:19 PM | Report abuse

81% of Americans Favor Allowing Illegal Immigrants to Stay in USA

The vast majority of Americans say they favor allowing illegal immigrants to stay in the U.S. if they have a job and pay their taxes, according to a new national poll. But a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey also indicates that a majority of the public says such a plan takes a back seat to stopping the flow of illegal immigrants into the country.

Eighty-one percent of people questioned in the poll say they support creating a program that would allow illegal immigrants already living in the U.S. for a number of years to stay here and apply to legally remain in this country permanently if they had a job and paid back taxes, with 19 percent opposed to such a plan.

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2010/07/27/cnn-poll-should-illegal-immigrants-be-allowed-to-stay/

Posted by: Ethan2010 | July 27, 2010 6:25 PM | Report abuse

JennofArk, one wonders if Dems will forget that "class warfare" won the 2008 election rather handily.

And Ethan, that is fascinating -- signals overwhelming support for immigration reform, right?

Posted by: Greg Sargent | July 27, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

"And Ethan, that is fascinating -- signals overwhelming support for immigration reform, right?"

Nah. ;-)

Haha. You'd think... but no.

I honestly don't think it does. It really doesn't matter what the people think.

It only matters that "X" legislation can get 60 votes in the Senate.

Nothing else matters.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | July 27, 2010 6:43 PM | Report abuse

Btw, good roundup. I'm a little pissed off right now, so please excuse my pessimism.

Have a good evening Greg.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | July 27, 2010 6:49 PM | Report abuse

@Greg: "That is fascinating -- signals overwhelming support for immigration reform, right?"

I've never even heard of anyone who doesn't support immigration reform.

Posted by: sbj3 | July 27, 2010 6:50 PM | Report abuse

I thought Plouffe was suppossed to get out the 2008 "New Voters" for this cycle? Was he speaking only about Illinois Dems? That would be an interesting admission and rather revealing (of the White House's) view of Democratic electoral chances in this cycle. Pelosi already had a snit about Gibbs earlier pessimism, is the White House triangulating? Didn't he tell all those reluctant House Dems that the difference between 1994 and today was that they had him?

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | July 27, 2010 6:56 PM | Report abuse

Troll, ha that's right! He told that congressman that Dems would be fine this fall because of him. Now they wont touch him with a ten foot pole.

Posted by: Truthteller12 | July 27, 2010 7:03 PM | Report abuse

Reaction to WikiLeaks 'vastly overdone'

CNN: What do you make of the disclosures in the WikiLeaks documents?

Fareed Zakaria: I think the reaction has been vastly overdone. Frankly I think it was overdone by the three newspapers that published them and then by the rest of the media. This has been compared by almost everybody involved to the Pentagon Papers. They are in fact nothing like that.

http://www.cnn.com/2010/OPINION/07/27/zakaria.wikileaks.logs/index.html

Posted by: Ethan2010 | July 27, 2010 7:22 PM | Report abuse

more:

CNN: What's the major thrust of the war logs?

Zakaria: They effectively show you what Barack Obama was saying on the campaign trail for about a year, which [Sen. John] McCain largely concurred with -- which was that the war in Afghanistan had been badly fought in the years 2004-2008, which is roughly when the logs date from, that it had been under-resourced from 2004-6, that the Taliban had managed to come back ... and that one of the reasons it had been able to come back was the support of the Pakistani military.

So all this was fairly well known. It does provide some richness and bears some little details such as the fact that the Taliban had been using heat-seeking missiles, which was reported but not widely reported. To me, that doesn't add up to a basic change in what we know about the war. ... If these documents had not been marked "secret" and someone presented you with that as reporting, at this point it would not even have made the front page.

[...]

I think that what we have in place right now is a strategy that says Gen. [David] Petraeus [the top military commander in Afghanistan] is going to be given a year to try to stabilize the situation, and then a year from now we are going to begin a drawdown. I think that that's perfectly reasonable. I don't see any advantage to an immediate, precipitous drawdown that begins tomorrow.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | July 27, 2010 7:25 PM | Report abuse

@Greg Re: DISCLOSE Act

I should point out that my local news station (Orlando, FL) reported on this story, noting that "Republicans successfully blocked a bill that would have restricted the amount of money special interests could use on political ads."

That can't play well on a local level. Yet another case of the Dems being handed a GIFT before the election, that if they could just get their messaging on track, they could do serious damage with it.

Posted by: TheBBQChickenMadness | July 27, 2010 7:50 PM | Report abuse

Greg - yes, class warfare did help win the 2008 elections. But when the other side is going over-the-top with fear-mongering, it calls for really stepping up the message. My personal experience is that when we call things for what they are, we win. But because it makes people uncomfortable when someone stands up and points to the turd in the punchbowl, most people would prefer to tiptoe around it and pretend that they didn't see it, either. The other thing is that the Democratic party is overly sensitive to stirring things up with the right - as we witnessed last week. But they're going to be stirred up anyway; I say if they aren't going to stop crying we should give them something to cry about. Certainly there's no thought given to fairness, truth, or decency by the right, so why do Democrats cringe so when the right accuses them of indecency for pointing out facts fairly and telling the truth? They'll either get over it or they won't; that's their call and it really should be of no concern to us.

Posted by: JennOfArk | July 27, 2010 8:39 PM | Report abuse

I've mentioned this a few times over the last couple of weeks but no one really seems that interested. Did you know that the federal HAMP program has only used 1/2 of 1% of the $75b to help under water home owners? I think it's an embarrassment to the Administration that we've failed so badly to intervene between the banks and mortgage owners. I'm not trying to slam Obama but I think it makes us look bad both politically and for humanitarian reasons. I can personally attest to the problems Brown highlights as my son's best friend is going through this right now.

Brown is now begging the banks to get with the program. Why we ever trusted the banks to do the right thing in the first place is beyond me. I think it's time to use that money to figure out a way to actually cram down the principle on these loans. Some of the states are beginning to address the problem so maybe we should just give them money if they find a successful solution.

From DDay:

"Sherrod Brown (D-OH) has sent a letter to four top banks (Bank of America, Citi, JP Morgan Chase and Wells Fargo) asking them – begging, really – to cooperate with the HAMP (Home Affordable Modification Program) and help homeowners avoid foreclosures. Brown identified a number of problems with how banks and servicers are using the HAMP program, including:"

• Having their mortgages put in arrears while they are enrolled in HAMP trial modifications, so that they are hit with late penalties and past due amounts that have accrued over the course of the trial period when their applications for permanent modifications are rejected;
• Being placed in trial HAMP modifications while simultaneously being subjected to the foreclosure process;
• Being asked to repeatedly complete and resend the same information for their HAMP application;
• Receiving contradictory answers to their questions when they call to ask for assistance;
• Failing to receive responses to their requests for information concerning the status, progress, and disposition of their HAMP applications and HAFA (Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives) requests;
• Being subjected to a long, drawn-out HAFA short-sale process; and
• Being denied permanent HAMP modifications after making all the trial payments.

http://news.firedoglake.com/2010/07/27/dem-leaders-reduced-to-begging-banks-to-modify-mortgages/

Posted by: lmsinca | July 27, 2010 9:06 PM | Report abuse

"Republicans successfully blocked the DISCLOSE act today, a big blow to Obama and Dems, but Senate leaders are likely to hold another vote on it this fall, Reid spokesman Jim Manley confirms."
----------------------------------------------

Is it really "a big blow" if everyone knew in advance what the outcome of the vote would be? Or would going ahead with a vote anyway in that case fall more under the heading of kabuki vignette to highlight a philosophical difference between Republicans and Democrats and provide the latter with an opportunity to polish their good government/clean elections cred?

Not sure how much actual good it will do them but it's not like it cost them anything. Any ink they get out of it is ink they wouldn't gotten otherwise. As an added bonus, it might even serve to take a little pressure off their left flank -- symbolic acts and lost causes being the essence of pure romance to some of the more ideologically-driven among us. So there's that.

Posted by: CalD | July 27, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

"As an added bonus, it might even serve to take a little pressure off their left flank -- symbolic acts and lost causes being the essence of pure romance to some of the more ideologically-driven among us. So there's that."

Or it's just Kabuki. Lieberman was at a funeral so presumably they could have had the vote tomorrow and still lost. Hopefully something will pass soon. If they want to try to energize the base, more power to them. I was more impressed this week with Obama threatening a veto of any legislation that would undermine the EPA.

Posted by: lmsinca | July 27, 2010 9:41 PM | Report abuse

For what it's worth, my sense was that Dems really thought it could conceivably pass as late as this morning -- no one knew that Lieberman wouldn't show up today, and there was genuine hope that Snowe might support it.

So, yes, it was widely predicted that it would fail, and yes, there are plenty of upsides for Dems in this standoff, but there was real disappointment for Dems that it went this way...

Posted by: Greg Sargent | July 27, 2010 9:46 PM | Report abuse

"Glenn Thrush catches David Plouffe suggesting that Obama's star power among new voters may not be enough to get them out to vote in the midterms."
----------------------------------------------

If it did, it would be about the first time in history that any force on earth ever has. Voting is a learned behavior. It seems to take most people long years of practice to do it on a regular basis.

Posted by: CalD | July 27, 2010 9:47 PM | Report abuse

Boy, that Palin thread was a dilly.

Pretty impressive how effective the right's propaganda mechanisms have been. These folks are convinced that what is in their noggins constitutes knowledge and that attending to Glenn Beck or Palin constitutes learning.

Even the most obvious contradictions don't seem to register at all, eg, critics of Palin or the RNC "hate Americans" while critics of some liberal or of the DNC isn't American-hating.

How do thought processes get so warped? Surely part of the answer to that is the real complexities of modern life, of world affairs, of governance and of the human condition, complexities which aren't emotionally or intellectually manageable for many.

There is clearly an acute falling back towards tribal identification. Us, the good guys and everyone else, the bad guys. This is now, for many, the over-arching framework in which the world is 'understood'.

For many, acts commited no longer identify the good guys and bad guys. Torture, deceiving, starting a war, shooting the unarmed or the innocent, or dismantling a methane detector in a mine are justified if the person(s) so acting are of the proper tribe. They are the good guys so the acts they carry out must be good (or at least without any scent of evil or immorality). This is axiomatic. And conversely, those who criticize the acts by these actors must be, axiomatically, bad.

The identifying characteristics of those we believed we ought to place our trust - education, experience, familiarity, demonstrated expertise, research, rigor in scholarship, objectivity, etc are now, again for many, found in their valid form only when they are claimed by 'authorities' within the single valid tribe. And it is the insistent and consistent claiming of them (accompanied by the proper symbols and cues) which identifies who in that tribe is the most trustable. And simpler is always better here. Thus the passionate embrace of Palin but not of Gingrich. Or Limbaugh's dittoheads but no David Frumheads.

This epistemological framework is, I think, extremely dangerous. It is grounded entirely or nearly entirely in tribal identification where facts, reason, evidence, even prior moral codes of the most basic sort and prior, more inclusive notions of 'us' are rejected.

Posted by: bernielatham | July 27, 2010 9:55 PM | Report abuse

I'll take your word for it Greg as you're way more inside than I am. I read your hopeful posts this morning and I was glad they had the vote anyway as it generated quite a bit of conversation here and elsewhere. I did notice your Palin post won the day for clicks though.

Posted by: lmsinca | July 27, 2010 9:59 PM | Report abuse

I've been posting at least once or twice a day now on why we need Warren to head the CFPB. This is from Newsweek and I agree with everything except they use Lincoln as a champion of the middle class, which is a bit of an exaggeration, if I'm being kind. The losers he's referring to are those of us who thought the bill could have curtailed Wall Street more, but as usual I'll take what I can get and view it as progress.

"Hence the enthusiasm among the losers in this debate for Elizabeth Warren, the fiery Harvard Law professor who largely sided with the Volcker-Lincoln camp and who first came up with the idea for a consumer-protection agency. Warren is most definitely not a Rubin acolyte. She’s more likely to be the sort of person who reveals to the public just how many administration speed dials Rubin occupies. Warren has long abhorred the sort of inside-the-box thinking that led a lot of smart people in Washington to conclude for more than two decades that Wall Street could be left to sort things out on its own.

And it’s real outside-the-box thinking that may be needed now. Because as “pay czar” Kenneth Feinberg’s recent report makes clear, little has changed in how Wall Street operates, and the big banks are even now finding their way through the new law’s many loopholes and continuing to award traders outrageous amounts of money for taking speculative risks. Feinberg lamented the payout of some $1.6 billion in bonuses and retention awards even as the government was bailing out the firms in 2008 and 2009; as a solution, he proposed a voluntary “brake provision” that would allow the boards of companies to reverse their contractual obligations to pay out such extras. But as Wallace C. Turbeville, a former VP at Goldman Sachs turned financial blogger, put it: Feinberg “might have more success asking the lions of the Serengeti to give the wildebeests a sporting chance of making an escape ... The government’s flaccid approach to Wall Street compensation, embodied in the Feinberg report, is appalling. These young traders are simply doing what America has told them to do. They are allowed to earn obscene amounts of money using the advantageous information, technology, and capital of their employers. Making money from less powerful counterparties is like shooting fish in a barrel.”

While the president is still deliberating on the choice—he’s not expected to announce a decision until August at the earliest—in recent days Geithner and other senior members of the administration have been signaling that a Warren appointment might be just the medicine that’s needed to restore public confidence."

http://www.newsweek.com/2010/07/27/elizabeth-warren-could-boost-public-confidence.html

Posted by: lmsinca | July 27, 2010 10:11 PM | Report abuse

As usual Bernie, you get to the heart of it and it's pretty discouraging.

Posted by: lmsinca | July 27, 2010 10:19 PM | Report abuse

Imsinca,

I don't want to throw a wet towel on your hopefulness about Elizabeth Warren (I'm in the canoe with you, btw), but be aware of what Chris Dodd said today:

"Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd cast more doubts this afternoon about whether Elizabeth Warren could garner enough votes to head the newly created consumer financial protection bureau, one day after White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs called her "very confirmable."

"I don't know, that's the question, how does he know that?" Dodd said in response to a question from TPMDC on his way in to the Democrats' weekly policy lunch.

"She's qualified, no question about that. The question is whether she's confirmable," Dodd added. "The issue is [if] you can't confirm somebody, if you go six or seven months without someone in that job, you've got a problem."

Progressives have been strongly pressuring the Obama administration to appoint Warren ever since the Wall Street reform bill passed in Congress. Some have argued that she be given a recess appointment if a minority of senators block her confirmation. Dodd objects to that idea.

"I think that would be a huge mistake," Dodd said, in response to a question from TPMDC. "Recess appointments. No, no, no."

"I think those are, you know, Republicans used to do it, I think that's a mistake," Dodd added. "Except in the most extreme circumstances where you need someone because of an emergency pending, but as a routine matter, I think it's a fundamental mistake."

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/07/dodd-no-recess-appointment-for-warren-who-still-may-not-be-confirmable.php?ref=fpb

Posted by: suekzoo1 | July 27, 2010 10:31 PM | Report abuse

Ims - I wish I could speak with more knowledge on the financial end of things. My support for Warren comes from having heard her speak many times on PBS and elsewhere and I've never heard her voice a dumb or untempered comment...always smart as a whip and calm and utterly free of anything vindictive. And because, as the Newsweek piece notes, she's not of the crowd.

re 'discouraging', sorry. I frequently don't write stuff precisely because it might be a downer. But sometimes I'm driven to do it if only to disencumber my psyche (a selfish reason, I know).

Posted by: bernielatham | July 27, 2010 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Andrew Sullivan links to a chart on what has changed in Afghanistan in the last ten years, and also what has not. Rather interesting.

http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/.a/6a00d83451c45669e20133f297c602970b-popup

The original chart and articles are here:

http://www.tnr.com/afghanistan

Posted by: suekzoo1 | July 27, 2010 10:37 PM | Report abuse

Sue, I read Dodd's comments but I keep hoping the Administration is smarter than that. The middle class is drowning, and I know it would have been worse without Obama at the helm, but they (we) need a champion right now and she has all the creds. I'll move on to the next issue if they don't choose her, I always do, but not before I make my thoughts known. And, I know you're pushing for her as well.

Bernie, I keep my mouth shut more often than not around here. I'm like you, I read articles from both right and left and delve into the comments as well, and it's tough to be positive considering the crap the right wing is dishing out these days. I just have to wake up every morning and remember my priorities and work toward that.

Posted by: lmsinca | July 27, 2010 10:47 PM | Report abuse

Just thought I'd let everyone know I'll mostly be out for the next few days. We're having a huge going away party for my daughter Sat. as she heads off to grad school. Probably 75-80 friends, family and geologists so I'll have my hands full cleaning, shopping and cooking, we have a hearty crew.

Keep up the good work while I'm gone.

Posted by: lmsinca | July 27, 2010 11:09 PM | Report abuse

"Surely part of the answer to that is the real complexities of modern life, of world affairs, of governance and of the human condition, complexities which aren't emotionally or intellectually manageable for many."

Of course, these poor defective citizens would be so much better off having the burden of those complexities removed from them by some pluperfectly accomplished, benevolent but stern sage to guide them...like Bernie!! or Liz Warren, or Doc Berwick, or the Dauphin Ezra, or perhaps some Complexity Czar.

"The identifying characteristics of those we believed we ought to place our trust - education, experience, familiarity, demonstrated expertise, research, rigor in scholarship, objectivity, etc..."

I'd trade ALL of those today for leadership with honor, wisdom, humility, grace, & above all trust in the people [probably haven't had the like since Coolidge {;>]. The traits you quote above have had a track record lately of producing narcissist, feckless politico/rock stars--on both sides--with all the attendant pathologies that hubris carries.

Golly, Bernie, do you ever step back and consider how you sound sometimes?

All the Best,
nascarTao

Posted by: tao9 | July 27, 2010 11:14 PM | Report abuse

lms,

Congrats to the grad-school bound daughter. Party on in Cali.
================================================

nb.: "This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then trust DODDS."

Posted by: tao9 | July 27, 2010 11:24 PM | Report abuse

Imsinca, my best wishes to your daughter! Enjoy the celebration. We'll keep the light on for ya...the solar powered one, anyway.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | July 27, 2010 11:47 PM | Report abuse

Thanks tao, you know I love you man, as well as honor, wisdom, humility, grace and trust in the people. We disagree who best personifies these lofty goals but that's fine.

She managed to pick up one of two full ride National scholarships to the School of Mines so the pressure's on. We're not slackers so I'm sure she's up to the challenge. We'll see if she goes with water or oil I guess.

Posted by: lmsinca | July 27, 2010 11:51 PM | Report abuse

Thanks Sue, keep the faith.

Posted by: lmsinca | July 27, 2010 11:54 PM | Report abuse

I don't know why you Dems think assault on the first amendment is a winner this year but if you want to campaign on it that's fine. GOP is comfortable campaigning on defending the constitution from a perpetual assault from the majority.

Posted by: Truthteller12 | July 28, 2010 12:19 AM | Report abuse

It'll be about a year since I began commenting here sometime in August, and from the beginning I've tried to push policies and strategy that boosted the middle class. We cannot give up, we have to keep pushing, complaining and working for policies that work for the middle class. The Dems are not there yet, but the Republicans are on another planet. You decide, backwards or forward.

"The disconnect between Wall Street and Main Street is growing.

The Consumer Confidence Index came in at 50.4 in July, a steeper-than-expected decline from the revised 54.3 in June, according to a survey the Conference Board. The decline follows last month's decline of nearly 10 points, from 62.7 in May, and is the lowest point since February. It takes a reading of 90 to indicate a healthy economy – a level not seen since the recession began in December 2007.

"Consumers have a much different view of the economy than the stock market does, and their views matter more to the economy," said Mark Vitner, an economist at Wells Fargo. The index "tells me the economy is heading for slower growth in the second half. We have low expectations for back-to-school."

Joel Naroff, president of Naroff Economic Advisors, agreed, noting that the fatter profits have shown that companies have been able to squeeze out higher productivity from workers, but that also means that "households are not benefiting."

The profit picture is "good news for Wall Street, but not good for workers," he added."

Posted by: lmsinca | July 28, 2010 12:20 AM | Report abuse

truthteller, it's a winner because a very strong majority of voters of all stripes were outraged by the Citizens United ruling, and support the legislation.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | July 28, 2010 12:40 AM | Report abuse

tao said: "Of course, these poor defective citizens would be so much better off having the burden of those complexities removed from them"

Are you going to argue that humans are without defect? A rather tough case for a Catholic to make.

But more to the point, what good does it do you to deny the emotional and cognitive discomfort that we experience, in varying degrees, when faced with increasing complexity? What good does it do you to refuse to consider or acknowledge the means by which humans, individually and in community, develop to mitigate such complexities?

I have a friend who refuses, utterly, to consider the positive aspects of religious phenomena or the huge variety of such phenomena, for individuals and for cultures. Others refuse to consider the negative aspects of their nation or their faith group or some other tribal community in which they hold membership. Either way, learning ends and perception of the real world is blocked.

"I'd trade ALL of those today for leadership with honor, wisdom, humility, grace, & above all trust in the people [probably haven't had the like since Coolidge"

How about your daughter's surgeon? Happy to allow Joe the Plumber in there with a scalpel? Would you be at ease seeing Sarah Palin at the head of the Fed? Beck as Education Secretary? Rand Paul in charge of the US military or foreign affairs? Michelle Bachmann leading NASA into a bright starry future?

Posted by: bernielatham | July 28, 2010 8:21 AM | Report abuse

All, morning roundup posted:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/07/the_morning_plum_61.html

And Bernie, the DNC is actually going to make the case today that you just made! (See morning roundup for details.)

Posted by: Greg Sargent | July 28, 2010 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Interesting question here re the identification of such characteristics as "honor", "grace", "wisdom", etc...

"The act in question in yesterday's vote attempted to preserve and strengthen some McCain-Feingold disclosure requirements. And so we have the sight of John McCain voting to kill a bill intended to uphold the greatest legislative legacy of John McCain." http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/michaeltomasky/2010/jul/28/congress-johnmccain

Or, while we are on this identification of inner goodness stuff, what of "refudiate"? Palin messes up for the simple reason that her vocabulary isn't very broad (how could it be given her lack of affinity for reading or study?). That's OK and we've all done it in speech if not in writing (I've done it in both).

But then (in alignment with the honor/grace/humility thing) she compares her language error to the artfulness of Shakespeare. And if we were to sit her down and inquire as to what she actually knows of Shakespeare's plays and poetry and of examples where he influenced language usage, what do you suspect we'd get as a response?

Sheesh.

Posted by: bernielatham | July 28, 2010 8:42 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company