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The Fix Breaks

What a run!

The Fix has worked nearly every day since Christmas -- testing his endurance and, more importantly, the patience of Mrs. Fix.

With Pennsylvania's primary still 36 days away(!), The Fix is taking some time off to recharge the batteries.

So, for this week, we won't be on any campaign conference calls and won't be scanning the memos sent by the campaigns; we will be getting our car tuned up and fixing the balky satellite television reception.

We won't rule out the possibility of posting once or twice during the week, but the pace will be considerably slower than Fixistas are used to.

Need to get the latest and greatest from the campaign trail? Visit "The Trail" -- the blog maintained by the politics staff at The Post.

We couldn't sign off for the week, however, without announcing the results of The Fix's official theme song contest. The race between "The Fix Is In" by OK GO and "November Rain" by Guns N Roses was very close, but a winner did emerge. Click to the next page to hear the official Fix theme song!

By Chris Cillizza  |  March 17, 2008; 8:39 AM ET
Categories:  Fix Notes  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: The Wrath of Olbermann
Next: Fix Pick: The Arrogance Equation

Comments

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Posted by: trhkeysxq dzobihgr | April 16, 2008 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Obama's efforts to connect to the Republican Party, specifically Bush, and Dick Chaney, of the Halliburton Company, dates back to the Presidents Grandfather, Prescott Bush, and indeed Chaney was once an executive officer of Halliburton.

The American military pounds Iraq with Artillary, bombs, and the like, destroying large sections of cities, and infra-structures, then Halliburton comes in to rebuild. Halliburton and Halliburton associated companies have raked in ten's of billions.

Obama is just like the BIG HALIBURTAN. Haliburton has contracted to build detention centers in the U.S. similiar to the one in Quantanammo Bay, Cuba. Halliburton does nothing to earn the Two Dollars for each meal an American Serviceman in Iraq eats.

http://www.halliburtonwatch.org/

Halliburton was scheduled to take control of the Dubai Ports in The United Arab Emiirate. The deal was canceled when Bush was unable to affect the transfer of the American Ports.

Now we see what some might suspect as similiar financial escapading from the Democrats.

Two years ago, Iraq's Ministry of Electricity gave a $50 million contract to a start-up security company - Companion- owned by now-indicted businessman (TONY REZKO) Tony Rezko and a onetime Chicago cop, Daniel T. Frawley, to train Iraqi power-plant guards in the United States. An Iraqi leadership change left the deal in limbo. Now the company, Companion Security, is working to revive its contract.
Involved along with Antoin "Tony" Rezco, long time friend and neighbor of Democratic Presidential hopeful Barack Obama, and former cop Daniel T. Frawley, is Aiham Alsammarae. Alsammarae was accused of financial corruption by Iraqi authorities and jailed in Iraq last year before escaping and returning here.

LIKE FATHER LIKE SON --
Recently, Obama's campaign staff have been vetted by the IRS to disclose his connection to the criminal money generating underworld. Besides, his connections to the REZCO MAFIA types, his up-coming tax fraud charges -- Obama needs to disclose why he is a MUSLIM "PATWANG-FWEEE" and disclose Obama's MUSLIM Farrakhan mob connection to Chicago's Trinity United Church of Christ. Its minister, and Obama's spiritual adviser, is the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. In 1982, the church launched Trumpet Newsmagazine; Wright's daughters serve as publisher and executive editor. Every year, the magazine makes awards in various categories. Last year, it gave the Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. Trumpeter Award to a man it said "truly epitomized greatness." That man is Louis Farrakhan. Farrakhan and Chicago's Trinity United Church are trumpeting Barack Obama AKA Barack Hussein Obama as the second coming of the messiah. Obama should stop suppoting our intervention in IRAQ. It's time to introduce this false, fake Xerox - X box Obama and invite the self-indicting thief plagiarizing pipsqueke "GLORK" Xerox - X box to meet the Buffalo "GAZOWNT-GAZIKKA" Police Department Buffalo Creek. He is MAD!!! --

OBAM YOU'RE NO JFK --

"GLORK" Obama looks like Alfred E. Newman: "Tales Calculated To Drive You." He is a MUSLIM "Glork" He's MAD!!! Alfred E. Neuman is the fictional mascot of Mad. The face had drifted through American pictography for decades before being claimed by Mad editor Harvey Kurtzman after he spotted it on the bulletin board in the office of Ballantine Books editor Bernard Shir-Cliff, later a contributor to various magazines created by Kurtzman.
Obama needs to disclose why he is a MUSLIM "PATWANG-FWEEE" and stop suppoting our intervention in IRAQ. It's time to introduce this false, fake "GLORK" Xerox - X box Obama and invite the self-indicting thief plagiarizing pipsqueke Xerox - X box to meet the Buffalo "GAZOWNT-GAZIKKA" Police Department Buffalo Creek.

Michelle Obama should be ashamed.

"GLORK" Michelle Obama should be ashamed of her separatist-racist connection to Farrakhan and Chicago's Trinity United Church trumpeting Barack Obama AKA Barack Hussein Obama as the second coming of the messiah. If Michelle Obama new what her husband -- the Hope-A-Dope, Fonster Monster -- Barack Obama AKA Barack Hussein Obama did in Harlem, she would wash her wide-open, Hus-suey loving MUSILM mouth out, with twenty-four (24) mule-team double-cross X-boX-BorraX. He is a MUSLIM "Glork" It's time to introduce this false, fake "GLORK" Xerox - X box Obama and invite the self-indicting thief plagiarizing pipsqueke Xerox - X box to meet the Buffalo "GAZOWNT-GAZIKKA" Police Department Buffalo Creek. He's MAD!!!

http://www.halliburtonwatch.org/

THE SPEECH --

The Apologia has arrived and once again the self-indicting, separatist-racist Barack Obama AKA Barack Hussein Obama, promises to heal the wounds of the world. The speech is the rude awakening of mass messianism of his campaign. Apologetically, Obama the MUSLIM double-cross X-boX-BorraX has an astonishingly empty two-prawn echelon explanation of his misjudgment.
In the first prawn: with regard to his connection to separatist-racist Rev. Wright; Obama summons voodoo and juju to express slavery as beginning and ending with the Rev. Wright.
In the second prawn: Obama's speech takes credit for Ashley's dream. A dream of unity Martin Luther King, Jr. borrowed from Ashley for his historic "I Have A Dream" speech. In Obama's speech, the connective bond Ashley, the elderly black man and Obama's grandmother share; represents Obama's self-indicting rise to the Harvard Yard. For Obama, the grand flag of language is the semi-fore of words, bestowed upon our nation by the messiah-alumni from Harvard. Obama's Swoon-Song Apologia to the nation represents a failed hymn -- a hymn that fails to heal the nation, repair the world, or make this time different than all the rest. Obama's speech is a brilliant failure.

http://www.halliburtonwatch.org/

Posted by: jreno20 | March 24, 2008 9:25 PM | Report abuse

After seeing this series of attacks on Obama for things that are really a bunch of vapor it is clear to me the media has a great deal of racism in their DNA. Really --- arrogant -- the guy is so busy he can hardly get in a wink of sleep and now he is being painted as arrogant .... it just seems that this is more about the press now than anything .. pitiful racism and Washington centric ideology .. what would you call McCain .. oh I forgot they don't do McCain unless it is a barbeque

Posted by: gweeks | March 18, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

rpy1,
While the 99.9 number certainly sounds good from a nuke company point of view, it nonetheless is technically accurate, best I can tell. Now, it still requires storage and presents health problems at that level. I like your idea but there are a few additional aspects to it. In some instances, you may want to keep the waste above ground for monitoring it (at the highly radioactive stages). Additionally, we keep finding new uses for some of the waste and if we bury it, it becomes problematic to recover it if needed or wanted. I am certainly not against wind or solar (or coal) but they too have their benefits as well as detriments. Some of those detriments are economic and some are environmental. In reading about it, I think that the problems with nuclear energy have been exaggerated. I would not put all my eggs in the nuclear option but I think it needs to be a viable part of the energy mix if we are going to mitigate our foreign energy dependency and continue to make great strides reducing the environmental impacts of progress.

Posted by: dave | March 18, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

drindl - "'USA Today leads with a poll that shows 79 percent of Americans say they're worried about the possibility of a depression that could last several years.'"

Well that certainly settles it. I could ask 50 people what a "leading economic indicator" is and I would bet that 45 of them would look at me glassy eyed with their mouth wide open. These are the same people that believe in the free lunch and that they could somehow buy a house that they could not come close to being able to afford. Asking the public their opinion on stuff like this tells you nothing of substance other than that they hear that the economy has problems from complete idiots and ideologues like E.J. Dionne Jr.

Posted by: dave | March 18, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

*************************
Or maybe a few hundred years until we come up with a better technological solution to this. Taking a perspective on this, the US has only had nuke power plants for 50 years. Spent nuclear fuel becomes less radioactive over time. After 40 years, the radiation flux is 99.9% lower than it was the moment the spent fuel was removed.
*************************

dave, I think the 99.9% decrease in flux from the moment the spent fuel was removed is a stat that puts the solid waste problem in the best possible light from the point of view of the nuclear companies. I'm no nuclear engineer, but it might be worthwhile finding out how getting rid of the remaining 0.1% works.

And coal is nasty. We're in agreement on that.

Assuming we'll get better technological solutions to this is fine, but I can counter by saying that we might get better technology in wind or solar.

At any rate, my take on the nuclear power question is this:

* Determine how much nuclear waste you want -- how many Yucca Mountains you can plan on supporting in the US, how much to store on site over the long term, etc.
* Based on those all being full, determine the amount of waste that will decay each year.
* That amount is your cap on solid nuclear waste per year. Over time, you'll fill up the storage facilities, but you'll never overfill.

I haven't heard anyone discussing this path, though.

Posted by: rpy1 | March 18, 2008 10:18 AM | Report abuse


"Never do I want to hear again from my conservative friends about how brilliant capitalists are, how much they deserve their seven-figure salaries and how government should keep its hands off the private economy," writes the Post's E.J. Dionne Jr.

indeed.

'USA Today leads with a poll that shows 79 percent of Americans say they're worried about the possibility of a depression that could last several years.'

Just thank President George W. Hoover and the Republican Party. First an endless war, then the Gilded Age followed quickly by the Great Depression. They really know how to flush a country down the toilet.

Posted by: drindl | March 18, 2008 9:50 AM | Report abuse

mark_in_austin - "dave, that was my recollection. Do you have a source for the 3 cu. Meters/yr?"

Wiki is where I was reading about it but this particular topic is additionally referenced.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_power#Solid_waste

Posted by: dave | March 18, 2008 9:47 AM | Report abuse

2008 Presidential Election Weekly Poll

http://www.votenic.com

Results Now Posted Instantly!

Check Back Weekly For New Polls!

Posted by: votenic | March 17, 2008 10:42 PM | Report abuse

So Hillary gets to keep her FL delegates and gets a chance to deliver a valid knockout blow to Obama in MI. What's not to love about these developments if you're in HRC's camp?

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl | March 17, 2008 9:58 PM | Report abuse

"First it was bees that were mysteriously dying. Now it's bats."

Never fear libs! There will always be plenty of the local species, Myotis Moonbatus, with which to repopulate.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | March 17, 2008 8:31 PM | Report abuse

Hillary sure is playing nice to her friends at Bear Stearns that donated so much to her campaign.
http://jtaplin.wordpress.com/2008/03/17/earth-to-george-bush-hillary-clinton/

Posted by: Trumbull | March 17, 2008 8:16 PM | Report abuse

First it was bees that were mysteriously dying. Now it's bats.
------------------

No surprise, given how we are poisoning our waters, our air, our food supply and even our food containers.

Like the ruling class of the Roman Empire, we seem to be assuring our own obsolescence...

http://www.epa.gov/history/topics/perspect/lead.htm

Posted by: wpost4112 | March 17, 2008 7:29 PM | Report abuse

Oh please, please pick Crist. Before he began his political career, he used to spend a LOT of time in gay bars -- and there are pictures. But good for you -- how open-minded!

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 6:50 PM | Report abuse


'The second issue is that they are harmful to many flying creatures, especially bats. '

That may not be an issue soon:

First it was bees that were mysteriously dying. Now it's bats.

Following a summer when honeybees across America began to die in great numbers, researchers are now finding thousands of sick bats in caves in New York, Vermont and Massachusetts. The deaths of the two species appear to be unrelated.

To help diagnose the problem, NYDEC scientists are sending samples to Beth Buckles, assistant professor of biomedical sciences in Cornell's College of Veterinary Medicine.

The affected bats are mostly little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus), among the most common North American bats. Other affected bats include the endangered Indiana bat (Myotis Sodalis), the northern long-eared bat (Myotis septentrionalis) and the eastern pipistrelle (Perimyotis subflavus). The bats live year round in the general area and usually hibernate each year in the same caves.

Buckles and colleagues are conducting postmortem exams of organs and tissues and testing for signs of inflammation, bacteria, viruses and toxins. So far, the researchers do not yet know what is causing the massive casualties, Buckles said.

http://www.lancasterfarming.com/node/1118

http://www.lancasterfarming.com/node/1118

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 6:47 PM | Report abuse

dave - you are ruining her sky is falling schtick.

there will be another hysterical reason to cut and pasts for hours on end tomorrow. Never fear goosy loosy.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 6:42 PM | Report abuse

dave, that was my recollection. Do you have a source for the 3 cu. Meters/yr?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | March 17, 2008 6:33 PM | Report abuse

drindl - 'Certain radioactive elements (such as plutonium-239) in "spent" fuel will remain hazardous to humans and other living beings for hundreds of thousands of years. Other radioisotopes will remain hazardous for millions of years. Thus, these wastes must be shielded for centuries and isolated from the living environment for hundreds of millennia'"

Or maybe a few hundred years until we come up with a better technological solution to this. Taking a perspective on this, the US has only had nuke power plants for 50 years. Spent nuclear fuel becomes less radioactive over time. After 40 years, the radiation flux is 99.9% lower than it was the moment the spent fuel was removed. A large nuclear reactor produces 3 cubic metres of spent fuel each year (which does not seem like a lot to me). You could also reprocess it, reducing the amount of waste but making the waste potent for a few hundred years. Overall, nuclear power produces far less waste material than fossil-fuel based power plants. Coal-burning plants are particularly noted for producing large amounts of toxic and mildly radioactive ash due to concentrating naturally occurring metals and radioactive material from the coal. Contrary to popular belief, coal power actually results in more radioactive waste being released into the environment than nuclear power.

Posted by: dave | March 17, 2008 6:24 PM | Report abuse

Now she's friggin Rambo:

Hillary and the Snipers in Bosnia

Hillary Clinton, describing her 1996 trip to Bosnia in her speech today:

"I remember landing under sniper fire. There was supposed to be some kind of a greeting ceremony at the airport, but instead we just ran with our heads down to get into the vehicles to get to our base."

Hillary Clinton, describing the same trip in December 2007:

"We landed in one of those corkscrew landings and ran out because they said there might be sniper fire."


Somehow, the snipers have gone from potential to actual.


John Kerry - get your camera!

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 6:23 PM | Report abuse

House Democrats have chosen to leave American intelligence operatives hobbled in the fight against terrorism. No amount of gamesmanship will conceal that.

surrender dorothy...I mean george.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Still hoping for Newt. It is likely that the next VP will be the ensuing POTUS. I would also accept Rudy with glee. I hope it is not some nobody governor meant to finesse the electorate.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Charlie Crist for veep.

Or General Odierno. Both of them are awesome, although in different ways. :)

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | March 17, 2008 6:13 PM | Report abuse

One less state for us to worry about. Put FL in the R column.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

last post from me for the day:

my point Zouk, was that you said we get ALL of our oil from Canada and Mexico. This is patently false.

We can talk more tomorrow about it if you'd like...

Posted by: AdrickHenry | March 17, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

official: no primary in florida.
maybe rules will be followed after all.

Posted by: wpost4112 | March 17, 2008 5:47 PM | Report abuse

so which is worse:

1. I have an hour to kill before my flight, I think I'll pop over to the men's room and see what is going on.

2. I have a trip to DC next month. think I'll open a bank account, create a false name, transfer some money, arrange for the train, avoid wire taps and banking laws, pay a lot, ask for "girlfriend" treatment.

Free and quick or planned and sinister?

I guess you Libs just really like to delve into every aspect of the practice. I kind of miss the finger wagging though.

3. interns, lying, impeachment, wag the dog, VRWC, so complicated. Must be a real hobby.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 5:47 PM | Report abuse

--------------
Zouk: I'd be more interested in a Lotus.

Ever tried to back out of a parking space in one?
--------------

Nah. But I'd think the turning radius would be small enough that wouldn't need to.

(And before you start talking about "loony libs", it was a joke)

Posted by: rpy1 | March 17, 2008 5:43 PM | Report abuse

the AMT definitely needs a fix. Rangal tried but the cons refused to pay for reducing it.
The problem is where will the money to pay for it come from? More debt or wind up the war and start finally moving the country forward and deal with real needs of this country that have been ignored for 7 years.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Proud: I have been pretty ACCURATE in my predictions so far, and the latest from Pa. is Repubs are being encouraged to change their registration to vot for Obama in the primary and the change it back.

Posted by: lylepink | March 17, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Zouk: I'd be more interested in a Lotus.

Ever tried to back out of a parking space in one?

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

I sold (one duplex)

My comments were not meant for the casual investor. you Libs can laugh, scoff, ridicule and envy succesful people all day long. In the end, it only alienates you from others who hope to be in that situation soon. the income categories in this country are very volatile with the bottom 20% turning over about 60% every ten years and the top doing the same. that is half the rich people will not be in a decade and half the poor people will not be in a decade. Part of this is from long term capital gains. none of it is from social security.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

There are issues regarding wind energy. There is the issue of NIMBY. This can and will limit where these windmills will go. Just ask the Kennedy's. The second issue is that they are harmful to many flying creatures, especially bats. Putting them offshore helps that but there are sound issues when you do that. Higher energy prices should help with the NIMBY problem but I have not heard that they have solved the second. None of that is to say that they are not better than some other alternatives. Just that there are some problems.

Posted by: dave | March 17, 2008 5:38 PM | Report abuse

bsimon, Mike, and Spec, thanx. I was talking original theory and like you I think there should be a longer term CG period with a lower rate.

Spec, I like Kansas on depth.

drindl, I will go to the DOE website later.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | March 17, 2008 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Mark, not sure if this helps in terms of starting research, but here's the wikipedia section on earthquakes and Yucca:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yucca_mountain#Earthquakes

(No opinion offered at this point, except to point out that the half life of any substance that is being discussed for nukes is a long time in a way few other things we deal with as humans are.)

On the tax questions, my understanding was that the whole Buffett thing included Social Security taxes. Am I remembering this wrong?

Zouk: I'd be more interested in a Lotus.

Posted by: rpy1 | March 17, 2008 5:37 PM | Report abuse

"sounds like an interesting read."

Its extremely dry, but pretty interesting. He makes a pretty convincing argument that Wall Street, particularly mutual fund & pension fund managers, aren't fulfilling a fiducary duty to their shareholders - by failing to use their proxy powers to force corporate america to thing long-term instead of short term.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

"the ongoing Liberal culture of perversion:...."

Senator Larry Craig, who likes to pick up strange men in dirty bathrooms, is a liberal?

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

the ongoing Liberal culture of perversion:....

--------------

Lordy! Conservatives make Liberals look like vestal virgins:

http://salem-news.com/articles/october172007/repub_scandals_10_17_07.php

Posted by: wpost4112 | March 17, 2008 5:32 PM | Report abuse

They have been perfecting the technology for years. Vestas is a Danish company & one of the world leaders in the technology.

quite right - the Danes are the wind power leaders. the entire country is crawling with them. you might not know this from an upstate farm house with leaky old windows.

and the Danes are from - you guessed it - Iceland.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 5:32 PM | Report abuse

"If anyone really wonders where the source of the housing collapse came from, look no further than the AMT. I used to own many rental units and enjoyed the favorable tax treatment. I held them for many years and rented them out."


There it is folks! If the AMT hadn't incented Zouk to sell his prolific real estate holdings, the market wouldn't've crashed. That must have been one huge portfolio.

Personally, I sold (one duplex) when the market price rose to about twice what rents would cover. Silly speculators drove prices far beyond what the income cover. For me, taking a one-time six-figure payout was far more appealing than managing & maintaining a property for the monthly rental income.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 5:30 PM | Report abuse

"If I would like to take this moment to agree with you.

That either makes us both idiots, or neither.

I've been thinking they should change the law for a while. 5 years would be better maybe. Ideally, 5 years and a really low rate, like 0-5%."

That's actually not a bad idea to work with, since most capital gains end up never being taxed anyway, thanks to the basis step-up at death.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse


In the United States alone, the Department of Energy states that there are "millions of gallons of radioactive waste" as well as "thousands of tons of spent nuclear fuel and material" and also "huge quantities of contaminated soil and water"..

The United States currently has at least 108 sites it currently designates as areas that are contaminated and unusable, sometimes many thousands of acres[

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 5:28 PM | Report abuse

bsimon -- sounds like an interesting read.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

how so, Mark?

'The radioactivity of all nuclear waste diminishes with time. All radioisotopes contained in the waste have a half-life - the time it takes for any radionuclide to lose half of its radioactivity and eventually all radioactive waste decays into non-radioactive elements. Certain radioactive elements (such as plutonium-239) in "spent" fuel will remain hazardous to humans and other living beings for hundreds of thousands of years. Other radioisotopes will remain hazardous for millions of years. Thus, these wastes must be shielded for centuries and isolated from the living environment for hundreds of millennia'

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

drindl: So far today we have seen some real problems from a certain poster in the areas of reading comprehension, time-telling, geography, spelling, humor, telling the truth, and playing well with others. I think someone's mommy isn't going to be happy with his report card.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

"Favorable Capital gains treatment encourages long term investments."

This argument isn't too persuasive. For LTCG treatment you need to hold for just one year. That's not what most people would consider a long term investment.

Spectacular,

If I would like to take this moment to agree with you.

That either makes us both idiots, or neither.

I've been thinking they should change the law for a while. 5 years would be better maybe. Ideally, 5 years and a really low rate, like 0-5%.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

bsimon, what is "Bogle?"


John Bogle, founder of Vanguard & evangelist for low-cost, long-term investing.

The book I'm reading is "The battle for the soul of capitalism", a criticism of what he terms 'manager's capitalism' vs. 'owner's capitalism'. He's basically criticizing wall street for promoting short term stock prices, which benefit managers, rather than focusing on producing long-term value, that benefits stock owners.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

If anyone really wonders where the source of the housing collapse came from, look no further than the AMT. I used to own many rental units and enjoyed the favorable tax treatment. I held them for many years and rented them out.

Little by little the AMT crept up and ruined this for me. Now I have no reason to own property and have disposed of all but two and my home. I know many others that opted for the stock market as well, despite the leverage on return real estate affords. My average return was always about 9-10% on property, including the leverage, while I have been getting 14% on stocks over the long run, with no hassels whatsoever.

Another brilliant Lib idea meant to snare a few dozen millionaires, gone terribly wrong.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

"you're right about that - just one year is barely enough time to get elected, transfer the money and get it over to your hooker in time for your trip to DC."

Oh, I think Sen. Vitter has been getting money over to his hookers for a lot longer than that.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Geography is so confusing for the illiterate.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 5:22 PM | Report abuse

proud, good to know blades are made here.

bsimon, what is "Bogle?"

drindl, with reactors that reuse fuel, the spent fuel is physically quite small. You would be astonished at how little is left to bury in a dry hole.

I would have been quick to say Yucca Mtn. is good but someone posted here that it was near a live fault and I have not researched that, although I tend to disbelieve it. I spent several hours over two days in 1990 with a PhD engineer who was Prez of the NV Sierra Club that year and who told me then that Yucca Mtn. was a safe site.

Moving spent fuel is easier, safer, and less of a target than moving gasoline in tanker trucks, as far as I know.

Anybody know different?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | March 17, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

'Holland has more background and experience in wind energy than any country in the world, so it might be hard to top them

Moonbat - Danes are not from Holland.'

totally out of left field, as usual.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 5:20 PM | Report abuse

semiliterate koz writes
"Moonbat - Danes are not from Holland."

But drindl wrote:

"'The unit ECN Wind Energy is part of the Energy research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN)...'

However, Holland ..."

To reiterate, for the slow: Holland = Netherlands

Neither of which are Denmark, home of the Danes

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 5:20 PM | Report abuse

you're right about that - just one year is barely enough time to get elected, transfer the money and get it over to your hooker in time for your trip to DC.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 5:19 PM | Report abuse

Holland has more background and experience in wind energy than any country in the world, so it might be hard to top them

Moonbat - Danes are not from Holland.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

"Favorable Capital gains treatment encourages long term investments."

This argument isn't too persuasive. For LTCG treatment you need to hold for just one year. That's not what most people would consider a long term investment.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Adrick, those are 2002 numbers from some ego site. I supplied official government sources. Nevertheless, the numbers are similar.

what is your point?

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 5:13 PM | Report abuse

"Favorable Capital gains treatment encourages long term investments."

Does it? Favorable dividend treatment coupled with unfavorable capital gains treatment would encourage long term investments. Favorable capital gains treatments actually encourages short-term holding, as the cost of selling is low. The Bogle book I'm reading now argues for lowering the dividend tax rate to reward the distribution of profit to owners, but raising the capital gains tax rate to encourage long-term ownership, over short term speculation in the market.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

KOZ will buy a new Tesla [KOZ, look it up, it is so cool].

Yes, I have seen them. not much of a daily driver. If price is no object, I will opt for the Buggatti Veyron. the Porsche is good when I need to take the kids along. although my boy now has legs to speak of, and I have to move the seat up a little too far for comfort. but I still have not seen anything that will tempt me away. right now I am saving for a bigger yacht so money is tight.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 5:09 PM | Report abuse

nuclear waste. Without solving that how can we go forward with more nuclear?

brazil, tho a much smaller country seems to have figured out energy independence, why can't we?

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 5:09 PM | Report abuse

" Does anyone know the reason we are relying on European suppliers? The weak dollar makes their stuff very expensive. "


They have been perfecting the technology for years. Vestas is a Danish company & one of the world leaders in the technology. A lot of MN wind farms seem to use their products. I think some components are manufactured here, as it can be extremely challenging and/or expensive to ship certain goods overseas (for instance, 60+ ft windmill blades).

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 5:07 PM | Report abuse

taxing capital gains at a significantly lower rate than ordinary income makes sense, Leichtman. There were three strong arguments for favored treatment originally:

1] Under a graduated tax system, "bunching" the capital gain from the sale of an asset into the year of the sale would skew the tax higher than the economic recognition that the gain was earned over [often, many] years. In other words, if I bought an investment property twenty years ago and could have averaged my gain over each of the twenty years, my tax would have been lower than if I reported my gain in the twentieth year. Thus favorable treatment for capital gains offsets the effect of the graduated tax, over time.

2] Inflation over time has been a reality.
Favorable treatment of the resale of capital assets helps offset inflation loss.

3] Favorable Capital gains treatment encourages long term investments.
--------------------------------
The same arguments do not apply to the treatment of dividends. The argument for favorable treatment here, as I understand it, is to somewhat offset the double taxation that occurs when both the payor and the payee of the dividend are taxed on the same earnings. This is especially uncomfortable when the payor and the payee are the same person...you probably know attorneys who organized as S corps to avoid this double taxation.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | March 17, 2008 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: AdrickHenry | March 17, 2008 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Where would you put the nuclear waste, Mark? We have no effective way to store it safely now. And I just can't see shipping to a central facility, with the security risk that trainloads of it crossing all over the country would pose.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse

'TX now is generating tremendous power from the wind and the high plains are not going to be tapped out of wind any time soon. I wish the generators [windmills] were made here and not in Holland, and it seems to me we have native industries that could easily produce the components'

probably some backdoor deal. it is something we SHOULD be doing -- however we have fallen way behind many countries, especially in Europe, in terms of energy technology. Something like this would help us:

'The unit ECN Wind Energy is part of the Energy research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN); an independent market oriented knowledge centre for energy research and development.'

However, Holland has more background and experience in wind energy than any country in the world, so it might be hard to top them.

BTW, diesel fuel is already $4.50 a gallon in the Northeast and regular is about $3.50.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

"incidentally Buffet made a million dollar challenge to any secy who could show they are paying a lower effective tax rate then he does. No one has taken him up after a year."

Perhaps, then, the govt needs to lower the secy's rate. Seriously, I get what Buffet is trying to get at. As one of my hero's, Buffet is someone I pay attention to. But again, his area of expertise is creating wealth (shareholder wealth for the most part). And he is one of the best ever at it. That is why I still say money in his hands is better for the country than it is in the government's hands. Perhaps there is an imbalance with the wealth of the country between the very rich and the rest of us. Many, including Buffet, seem to think that is a bad thing. Assuming it is, the question is then how do you "fix" it? The only answer that seems to be discussed is raising the taxes on the wealthy and keeping the death tax. Of course, Buffet has personally decided not to pass any money on to his heirs and to give billions away to charity. If he wanted to, he could donate some of that to the IRS. I just don't think that giving more money to an institition that has not been able to live within its means and who's spending priorities are sometimes based on the ideas put forth in the op/ed pages of the New York Times is a good idea. And just so we are clear, Buffet pays substantially more dollars in taxes than his secy.

Posted by: dave | March 17, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

mark "I wish the [wind] generators were made here"

Actually, they are made up here in NoDak, mark! Check out the website from LM Glassfiber. It's pretty cool.

http://goliath.ecnext.com/coms2/product-compint-0001302295-page.html

I see the huge blades being shipped out on special trucks all the time. They can't make 'em fast enough.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | March 17, 2008 4:59 PM | Report abuse

"'What is wrong with you, anyway? Three degrees and still so immature.'

you don' really beleive that crap, do you? that idiot couldn't possibly have a degree in anything. he just makes sh*t up."

Oh I know, but once again, I tried to take the high road. He can have ten degrees; he's still a complete buffoon.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

I trust their economic judgment over your's.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 04:50 PM

Ah... we reach the point we have been ignoring. Libs trust the government and "experts" to make their decisions. Republicans make thier own decisions.

"Mommy, should I have sex with my boyfriend, I am 12 now? ask hillary, they wouldn't be handing those things out in school if you weren't supposed to use them. whatever you do, don't ask your father, he's a republican and might want to have a say in what his teenage daughter is doing."

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Mark,

Thanks for your insight. You're right, we should expect higher fuel in the near future.

-------------------------------------

The same people who criticize the administration are standing in the way of a coherent solution: Environmental activisists.

They won't let us drill.

They won't let us build cheap, safe, nuke plants.

Tell me liberals, what is your //SOLUTION//?
[Hint: solution is the opposite of problem].

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 4:57 PM | Report abuse

So mark: On more important matters, who do you like in the NCAA b-ball tourney? I think Texas can go very deep. Among other non-1 seeds I like Pitt too.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:56 PM | Report abuse

'What is wrong with you, anyway? Three degrees and still so immature.'

you don' really beleive that crap, do you? that idiot couldn't possibly have a degree in anything. he just makes sh*t up.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

it's useless spectator -- these subhumans are capable of little else but jumping up and down screaming and throwing feces.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Lyle writes "I have been ridiculed by some about my "Feeling" there was something BAD wrong about this guy Obama for more than a year"

Gee, pink. I thought we'd been ridiculing you for longer than that.

No matter, your Dem candidate may have a second wind lately but I wouldn't count my chips just yet, were I you.

As Leno recently said "Political experts are now saying it's almost impossible for Hillary Clinton to win, and everyone is urging her to call it quits and go home to Bill. Except, of course, Bill. 'Stay out there, honey!'"

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | March 17, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

the ongoing Liberal culture of perversion:

TRENTON, N.J. - He says yes. She says no. He says yes. Former New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey said Monday he and his wife and a male aide engaged in sexual threesomes, contradicting a denial issued hours earlier by his estranged wife. In an e-mail to The Associated Press, the nation's first openly gay governor said published reports by former campaign aide Teddy Pedersen were true.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

bsimon, Mike, thanks. Of course the timing would be critical. An increase from $70 to $105/bbl would by itself increase the cost of a gallon of gasoline by 83 cents, but months down the road.

So does that mean we should see $3.60/gal next month?

Proud, like you I think that higher priced gasoline will provide the incentives for production and conservation and alternate energy sources. I do not want to see "price controls" attempted on petroleum based fuels - actually, I probably never want to see price controls, on anything, although I was a baby during WW2 and my folks thought rationing and price controls prevented spot gouging. So maybe in WW2 it was OK as part of the collective war effort and national sense of purpose. It is generally as bad as KOZ thinks it is.

At some fuel price, KOZ will buy a new Tesla [KOZ, look it up, it is so cool]. At a somewhat lower fuel price I will be buying a turbodiesel.

Mike, in TX they are drilling deeper in known fields because the price justifies the cost now.

I do think we have to throw all energy sources into the mix, including nukes, and encourage conservation through simple publication of alternatives now available.

TX now is generating tremendous power from the wind and the high plains are not going to be tapped out of wind any time soon. I wish the generators [windmills] were made here and not in Holland, and it seems to me
we have native industries that could easily
produce the components. Does anyone know the reason we are relying on European suppliers? The weak dollar makes their stuff very expensive.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | March 17, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

"LOUD and DUMB still can't get past two line insults as the basic entry on this blog."

Please, drooler. My first response to you was perfectly civil. Trying to take the high road and all that. But you immediately jumped into LOUD and DUMB mode. Anyone can scroll up and see.

What is wrong with you, anyway? Three degrees and still so immature.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

"The man owns companies outright, and earns CAPITAL GAINS when he makes a sale, which are taxed lower than earned income."

"The purpose is to give people the incentive, and opportunity, to invest without being penalized."

honestly I don't think that Mr. Buffet or Mr. gates needs any tax favors to employ the hundreds of thousands of workers their companies employs.

Hey if you cons want to yell at Bill Gates and Warren Buffet that they are ungrateful libs, I will gladly furnish you links to their companies. They are not happy with this tax treatment why are you cons getting so bent out of shape? I trust their economic judgment over your's.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

'I was away most of last week and forgot how utterly useless any interaction with a total loon can be.

Now I remember.'

then why don't you go away again? we're waiting...

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

LOUD and DUMB still can't get past two line insults as the basic entry on this blog.


What they do say is that you can't even tell time. The race for idiot of the day is neck and neck between you and the illiterate gomer pyle.


Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 04:42 PM

See I predicted he would move on to two line insults.

//ignore moonbats on//

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:49 PM | Report abuse

'When in doubt, insult your opponent.

In the marketplace of ideas, you lose general dimwit, every time.'

LOL. these rightwing apes [my apologies to apes] have zero awareness and a truly magnificent ability to project.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Well the baying of the jackels hate speech has dominated this blog again.

Mike - drindl is a person who can't figure out that bad writing doesn't sell and LOUD and DUMB still can't get past two line insults as the basic entry on this blog.

I was away most of last week and forgot how utterly useless any interaction with a total loon can be.

Now I remember.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

"

the usual reply will be the one line insult devoid of fact. another of drindl's jackels. you all are so 90s. go out and vote clinton and then dissappear into the sunset. your hate-mongering is so tired. go over to Kos and have a hate fest day.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 04:33 PM

Good point, Zouk."

the rightwingnut circle jerk is in high gear now.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 04:32 PM

And they say none of my predictions come true."

What they do say is that you can't even tell time. The race for idiot of the day is neck and neck between you and the illiterate gomer pyle.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

"When in doubt, insult your opponent.

In the marketplace of ideas, you lose general dimwit, every time."

Interesting two sentences from the idiot.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Idiot: "Tax "SHELTERS"?

The man owns companies outright, and earns CAPITAL GAINS when he makes a sale, which are taxed lower than earned income.

The purpose is to give people the incentive, and opportunity, to invest without being penalized.

How is that a SHELTER? By that definition, every year I have a SHELTER. And you too.

Your fear/suspicion of the rich and successful is pathetic."

Idiot, your ignorance is even deeper than I ever would have expected. Calling you Gomer Pyle is an insult to Gomer Pyle.

Do some research on things like hedge funds and you'll learn all about tax shelters, idiot.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

'I think part of the disparity is that pump price reflects the price of oil when the gasoline was refined, whereas the reported price for a barrel of oil reflects futures contracts for product not yet delivered to refineries.'

yup, and that means over the next few months, it's going to go straight up at the pump. just in time for the election.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

"no your stupidy bores me."

Ha ha ha.

Back to the playbook.

When in doubt, insult your opponent.

In the marketplace of ideas, you lose general dimwit, every time.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 4:39 PM | Report abuse

Idiot: "Spectacular,

Ever heard of a 1099?"

Idiot, why do you keep directing these posts to me? Your fellow idiot zouk is the one who said Buffett didn't have any income.

Please try to pay closer attention, ok, idiot?

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:38 PM | Report abuse

the usual reply will be the one line insult devoid of fact. another of drindl's jackels. you all are so 90s. go out and vote clinton and then dissappear into the sunset. your hate-mongering is so tired. go over to Kos and have a hate fest day.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 04:33 PM

Good point, Zouk."

the rightwingnut circle jerk is in high gear now.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 04:32 PM

And they say none of my predictions come true.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:37 PM | Report abuse

"You are right he has tax shelters that his employees don't have, that was exactly his point. I am sure you are ready to close some of Mr. Buffet's tax shelters, right."

Tax "SHELTERS"?

The man owns companies outright, and earns CAPITAL GAINS when he makes a sale, which are taxed lower than earned income.

The purpose is to give people the incentive, and opportunity, to invest without being penalized.

How is that a SHELTER? By that definition, every year I have a SHELTER. And you too.

Your fear/suspicion of the rich and successful is pathetic.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Someone mentioned the Zogby poll showing a loss of support for Obama. I will be monitoring polls this week even more so than I usually do. Mainly due to the recent revelations about this Pastor. I have been ridiculed by some about my "Feeling" there was something BAD wrong about this guy Obama for more than a year, and from recent reports about his wife being proud of America for the first time in her adult life, going to this church for 20+ years and having no idea or knowledge of what his "Spiritual Advisor" has been preaching for all these years.

Posted by: lylepink | March 17, 2008 4:37 PM | Report abuse

"Name one Ace???? One tax code provision that will bring his 36% marginal rate down to below say 15%."

Uh let's see, since you seem to know that he doesn't get a W-2, so let's say his income is entirely capital gains and dividends. That puts him at 15% max. Then he gives away a few hundred million or so. That will bring his effective rate down just a bit lower.

Next!

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

'You have stopped our discussion, and have gone back to hating Bush-Cheney.

Is that because annoying facts got in the way?'

no your stupidy bores me.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

"I'm sorry my three-degreed economic friend."

Best line of the day.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Spectacular,

Ever heard of a 1099?

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

because he can take advantage of various tax code provisions that his secretary cannot.

I think you should be careful before making fun of other peoples' grasp of the facts.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 04:15 PM

Name one Ace???? One tax code provision that will bring his 36% marginal rate down to below say 15%. you will probably have to use Lib math to get there. Maybe the student loan deduction. nope cuts off around 70K. I know, I know real estate deductions - darn that old AMt again. Maybe you could just admit for once that you are loud and dumb abd shot off your mouth as usual without having any idea what you were saying. It's OK, we all know it already.

I can bet you have absolutely no idea what you are talking about, as usual.

the usual reply will be the one line insult devoid of fact. another of drindl's jackels. you all are so 90s. go out and vote clinton and then dissappear into the sunset. your hate-mongering is so tired. go over to Kos and have a hate fest day.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

"Good point, Zouk."

the rightwingnut circle jerk is in high gear now.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

incidentally Buffet made a million dollar challenge to any secy who could show they are paying a lower effective tax rate then he does. No one has taken him up after a year.
You are right he has tax shelters that his employees don't have, that was exactly his point. I am sure you are ready to close some of Mr. Buffet's tax shelters, right.
And you are right as long as W is blowing the budget with a 3 trillion dollar war there will never be any possibility of reducing or illiminating the amt. I am sure that you are concerned about the AMT. If you want to ell at anyone about tax policies let me get his email address for you b/c I am sure you would call him an unAmerican lib.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Gomer Pyle: "Capital Gain != Income."

Hey SFB, I think you need to be directing that bit of genius to your fellow drooler Zouk, since he's the one who seems to think that Buffett has no income if he doesn't get a W-2.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Good point, Zouk.

In addition to regulating gas prices,

The government should regulate stock prices too.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 4:29 PM | Report abuse

...just got back from a meeting:

from Zouk: "We get all our oil from Canada and Mexico."

I'm sorry my three-degreed economic friend. We get approx. 18% of our imported oil from Canada and about 15% from Mexico.

Imports from the Persian Gulf total 19.8%. Imports from OPEC countries total approx. 40%.

Posted by: AdrickHenry | March 17, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

"

"because he can take advantage of various tax code provisions that his secretary cannot."


I see in your glaring ignorance you have no concept of the AMT. the only way for his income to be less is to charge him the dividend /cap gains rate of 15%. there are no loopholes to get you there. Believe me, I have tried. there is no escaping the AMT.

"I think you should be careful before making fun of other peoples' grasp of the facts."

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 04:15 PM

LOUD and DUMB indeed."

Try to be civil and this is what you get. Zouk knows better than Warren Buffett what Buffett's effective tax rate is. How interesting.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

"I know this isn't taught on soap operas."

Apparently, neither is the idea that stocks might be volatile in the short term. It is so confusing. I wish the government would just take care of it all for me. Oprah - help!

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

general dummy,

You have stopped our discussion, and have gone back to hating Bush-Cheney.

Is that because annoying facts got in the way?

Don't think your continued ignorance isn't noticed.

(Although I assure you, it is not missed).

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

leichtman - "I also have a problem when Warren Buffet's secy (his words not mine) pays a higher effectice tax rate then he does."

I don't and here is why. This allows Buffet to donate more funds to the Gates Foundation, an organization that is pretty good at doling out money to charities and those in need. The choice that is there is what to do with it? Should the government take more? Should he keep it? Should he give it to charity? Or he could give it to the IRS. Out of those choices, I think that he should either keep it and use it to create more wealth/jobs/efficiencies/etc (his area of expertise) or donate it. Either of those would, IMO, be a better use than letting elected, partisan, special interest-supported politicians decide what to do with it.

Posted by: dave | March 17, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

"I think part of the disparity is that pump price reflects the price of oil when the gasoline was refined, whereas the reported price for a barrel of oil reflects futures contracts for product not yet delivered to refineries."

I agree.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

"because he can take advantage of various tax code provisions that his secretary cannot."


I see in your glaring ignorance you have no concept of the AMT. the only way for his income to be less is to charge him the dividend /cap gains rate of 15%. there are no loopholes to get you there. Believe me, I have tried. there is no escaping the AMT.

"I think you should be careful before making fun of other peoples' grasp of the facts."

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 04:15 PM

LOUD and DUMB indeed.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

"because he can take advantage of various tax code provisions that his secretary cannot."

You can't mask your ignorance of those many and "various" loopholes and "provisions" that he "can" take advantage of, and she "cannot".

Capital Gain != Income.

I know this isn't taught on soap operas.

Unearned Income != Earned Income.

Facts = Reality, whereas Bias != Reality.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

"A 42 gal. bbl of WesTX crude produces about 20 gal of gasoline and 22 gal of other stuff that is sold, not wasted]. So at $105 /bbl of oil, gasoline should be wholesaled at above $3/gal, assuming $2.50/gal out of the ground, plus freight, refining cost, plus profit and overhead to the refiner. Add in freight to the retailer, retail profit, and tax, in a normal price sturcture it seems to me that gasoline should already be $5-$6/gal retail.

Anybody know why its so cheap?"

I think part of the disparity is that pump price reflects the price of oil when the gasoline was refined, whereas the reported price for a barrel of oil reflects futures contracts for product not yet delivered to refineries.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

"the sky is falling, the sky is falling!"
Bernacki, Greenspan and Buffet are worried about the economy but they all take a back seat to the economic expertise of the king.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Enjoy Chris, you've more than earned it.

Drindle... The best bumper sticker spotted in GA says: Cheney/Satan '08

Looks like the Feds are pulling a big shell game... having Morgan "front" for what amounts to a bailout of Bear. The Feds loan Morgan and Morgan relends Bear. Sweet.... for everyone but taxpayers.

What is the bailout plan for homeowners?

GO DRAKE!!

http://whathappenedtomycountry.blogspot.com

Posted by: Truth_Hunter | March 17, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

capital gains is not income, nice. Did you learn that in eco 101?
"Because his is not income. he doesn't get a W2" no he gets a 1099 but its still income.
Buffet is bothered by it but I am absolutely sure that you and your expertise know much more about what is good for business then Warren Buffet.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Let's hope that 2006 and 1928 don't end up looking similar in other ways.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 04:12 PM

the sky is falling, the sky is falling! even chicken little was not this hysterical. all that non-writing for profit is starting to crack this loon. I think there's an article in the chinese times that you haven't pasted here today. go git it!

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

"Because his is not income. he doesn't get a W2."

What are you talking about? There are many kinds of income other than W-2 earned income. If he didn't have income he wouldn't have made the comment.

The whole point of Buffett's comment is that he has far more income than his secretary, yet pays a much lower effective tax rate because he can take advantage of various tax code provisions that his secretary cannot.

I think you should be careful before making fun of other peoples' grasp of the facts.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse

WMDs in Iraq morphs into NO AL queda connection.

which is it drindl, can intelligence be relied upon or not?

Before you answer, consider how it will make Bush look and how much hate, spite and envy it contains.

Drindl just can't stop hating. It's just too much a part of it.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

it's the new gilded age...

'When you're not checking the stock market today, check out Emmanuel Saez's recently updated tables on income inequality. Here's an interesting table:

http://thinkprogress.org/wonkroom/

Look at incomes for the top 1% of earners -- the solid black triangles. You'll see that in 2006, their share of the nation's income (22.9%) reached its modern peak. The only year higher? 1928.

Another table shows that the top 10% in 2006 took a bigger share (49.7%) than at any point since 1917. The year 1928 was the runner-up.

Let's hope that 2006 and 1928 don't end up looking similar in other ways.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

I also have a problem when Warren Buffet's secy (his words not mine) pays a higher effectice tax rate then he does.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 03:58 PM

Because his is not income. he doesn't get a W2. how many jobs is the sec'y responsible for. how about Warren?

I knew when the topic went to actual facts and economics today, it would be a yuck fest with liberals diplaying how much they know - all wrong as usual.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

"Before the Iraq war began, Dick Cheney was among the most prominent messengers of the false claim that Saddam Hussein had a relationship with al Qaeda. For example, he said it was "pretty well confirmed" that a 9/11 hijacker met with Iraqi intelligence officials before 9/11.

Over the past five years, numerous intelligence reports have conclusively proved that there was no Iraq/al Qaeda relationship. A Senate Intelligence Committee report stated in Sept. 2006 that Saddam and Osama bin Laden were not collaborators, but rather enemies.

More recently, a study commissioned by the Defense Department to look into the Iraq/al Qaeda ties "showed no connection between the two." But Dick Cheney still isn't convinced. Speaking at a press conference in Iraq today, Cheney shot down the new report. He acknowledged that -- while no "operational link" has been found between Iraq and al Qaeda -- it's "pretty clear" there is a link"

Dick Cheney just can't stop lying. It's just too much a part of him.

MCain/Cheney '08.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

"With this highly explosive material, Obama will be directly nominated."

God Damn America

We Reap What We Sow

No flag. No pledge.

We'll see Logan...

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Chris, the break will come if the Clintons can finally be pressured to release their records (tax returns, White House records, list of big donors to their foundation)... With this highly explosive material, Obama will be directly nominated.

Posted by: Logan6 | March 17, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

"you like the efficiency of FEMAhey are adept at destroying it."

not since Brownie destroyed it b/c cons hate govt they have become adept at destroying it.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 4:03 PM | Report abuse

"but if you are a Lib you like the efficiency of FEMA, the return of SS, the forward thinking of NASA, the frugality of Medicare, the success of the teachers union."

nice.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

"For example, a 1% tax cut will reduce federal revenue by 1% because people will pay less taxes."

"When in reality, people change their behavior. Money moves differently. Jobs are created, and (in many, most cases), federal revenue INCREASES."

not sure what you mean by a 1% tax cut reference?
Jobs are not being created: we lost 63,000 last month. The deficit is also $250 billion since the tax cuts.

I would love to pay 0 in taxes and have govt services, but again we can't have our cake and eat it. I asked which specific nondescretionary programs, of signficance conservatives would like to do without. Federal roads, bridges, SS, Medicare, food and safety inspection, the FDIC were suggested we could do without anything else?

My problem is finding a proper balance of taxes, balancing the budget and providing for the general welfare that the Dem candidates support. McCain says no.

I also have a problem when Warren Buffet's secy (his words not mine) pays a higher effectice tax rate then he does.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

drindl - "Nor is it for long term security."

It's workin well for me!

Posted by: dave | March 17, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

"Nor is it for long term security."

Ignorance abounds.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

drindl - "Funny, the Supreme Court doesn't."

These are the issues that this case is deciding. It is, apparently, one of the few constitutional areas that has little precedence associated with it.

From the WaPo: "This may be one of the only cases in our lifetime when the Supreme Court is going to be interpreting the meaning of an important provision of the Constitution unencumbered by precedent," said Randy E. Barnett, a constitutional scholar at the Georgetown University Law Center. "And that's why there's so much discussion on the original meaning of the Second Amendment."

Posted by: dave | March 17, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

'The stock market is not now and never has been for short term investments of money that you absolutely need.'

Nor is it for long term security.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

"The Bush administration never at any time created as many as the Clinton administration."

Ever heard of CAPACITY?

Unemployment was at ALL-TIME LOWS.

You couldn't make any more, general!

Quit worshiping bubba for 2 minutes.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

"it seems to me that gasoline should already be $5-$6/gal retail."


mark, I've been saying that for a while now, too. It's the only incentive that will be effective to shift from foriegn oil to other alternatives. Since we've gotten so used to cheap oil, it's really a shame that we're so far behind the curve on this.

Newt has some great ideas, and I hope Mccain will work with those solution-based incentives as he says he will. He is a man of his word who gets things done, unlike the Dems who just blame Bush and Cheney for everything.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | March 17, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Anyone retiring this year and dependent on the market's retun this year is screwed based on the return of the DOW, NASDAQ which has lost 2200 points since Oct.


Anyone but a clueless Lib would have moved their money from stocks to bonds and cash as they got older. there is even a rule of thumb for folks as dense as you - your percentage of bonds should equal your age.

but if you are a Lib you like the efficiency of FEMA, the return of SS, the forward thinking of NASA, the frugality of Medicare, the success of the teachers union.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

How is a state government going to handle something like food or pharmaceutical or chemical inspection? I mean, seriously?

Ever heard of the Better Business Bureau?

Imagine 2, 3, 5 MASSIVE, COMPETING, PRIVATE agencies.

Or, something else

Use your imagination, general.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

'When in reality, people change their behavior. Money moves differently. Jobs are created, and (in many, most cases), federal revenue INCREASES.'

Taxes are cut. Jobs never materialized. The Bush administration never at any time created as many as the Clinton administration. Critical thinking skills? You are laughable.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

dave - thank you for saying something worth reading.

If you invested at the beginning of the bull market in '02, you would be up 99%.

Let's have some perspective. Something Bush-haters hate.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

How is a state government going to handle something like food or pharmaceutical or chemical inspection? I mean, seriously?

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

leichtman - "Anyone retiring this year and dependent on the market's retun this year is screwed based on the return of the DOW, NASDAQ which has lost 2200 points since Oct."

Well, if you started investing last October you are. However, if you have been saving for retirement for several decades, you are probably not screwed. You are not as good as you were last year, but screwed is a pretty strong word. If you invested in the stock market in Oct and were depending on having that money now, you were either given poor advice or are none to bright when it comes to managing your money. The stock market is not now and never has been for short term investments of money that you absolutely need.

Posted by: dave | March 17, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

"McCain spokesman Randy Scheunemann said the senator thinks the D.C. gun ban is "clearly unconstitutional" and that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual's right to bear arms."

Funny, the Supreme Court doesn't.

I guess the Big Central Government should overrule and override the states and decide what's good for everyone.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

A better example of liberal non-thinking:

In Dallas, photo-cams were installed at many popular intersections to nab bad drivers with tickets.

The city estimated $XX million in ticket/fee revenue from the cameras.

Here's where it gets sticky for a liberal.

Speeding, red light driving, went DOWN.

[people CHANGED their behavior, in response to a stimulus - what an idea!]

Fee income dropped, because no one committed crimes. Now, the cost of the cameras does not "justify" the fees they bring in, so they will be shut down.

Who cares about public safety, crime, accidents, etc.

And the liberals are dumbfounded!

You mean to tell me, if you tax something you get less of it?

Hold the phones!

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Increasing gas mileage is the logical and cost-effective approach--and very simple to effect, since US companies already build high-mileage vehicles for the European market. The auto makers and oil company lobbyists have fought re-importing these vehicles, of course because big, low mileage vehicles produce for profit for them. Yet anther way in which corporate ownership of politicians means that we are paralyzed in our ability to address issues, no matter how serious, because profits will always come first for multinationals.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

"we should also build our own bridges and put out our own fires. what passes for 'thinking' among cons is truly frightening."

general drindle,

the same ol' liberal thinking is that things are as they always will be.

For example, a 1% tax cut will reduce federal revenue by 1% because people will pay less taxes.

When in reality, people change their behavior. Money moves differently. Jobs are created, and (in many, most cases), federal revenue INCREASES.

As for your comment, just because local governments and individual groups don't already handle many of the above, doesn't mean they won't, can't, or SHOULDN'T.

Honestly, who lacks critical, dynamic thinking skills?

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

CC - have a good vacation. As a workaholic myself, you don't get any sympathy points from me but everyone needs a vacation now and then.

On the political front, is this the bold clarity and new kind of politician that an Obama presidency would give us (Obama on the DC gun ban/SC case)?

"Jen Psaki, a spokeswoman for Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois, said Mr. Obama "believes the Second Amendment creates an individual right, and he greatly respects the constitutional rights of Americans to bear arms. He also believes that the Constitution permits state and local governments to adopt reasonable and common-sense gun safety measures," she said, but would not elaborate on the whether the senator supports the D.C. gun ban."

I will grant that that is better than his Democratic opponent - "The campaign of Mr. Obama's Democratic rival, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York, did not respond to repeated requests for comment on the Heller case."

Meanwhile, willing to apparently take a stand on the position - "Sen. John McCain of Arizona, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, signed on to the congressional brief and co-sponsored previous efforts to lift the ban.

McCain spokesman Randy Scheunemann said the senator thinks the D.C. gun ban is "clearly unconstitutional" and that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual's right to bear arms."

Posted by: dave | March 17, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Where are they allowed to look, general?

Apparently just about everywhere, private...

'With over 2.3 million wells having been drilled in the US since 1949,[there are very few unexplored areas left where another supergiant oil field is likely to be found.[ US oil reserve numbers are very accurate compared to those of most other countries.'

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 3:39 PM | Report abuse

"No oil fields have been found in the US since 1970."

Where are they allowed to look, general?

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

I wish I had time to join this discussion. Let me throw in a useful fact, peripheral to the discussion as it my be.

A 42 gal. bbl of WesTX crude produces about 20 gal of gasoline and 22 gal of other stuff that is sold, not wasted]. So at $105 /bbl of oil, gasoline should be wholesaled at above $3/gal, assuming $2.50/gal out of the ground, plus freight, refining cost, plus profit and overhead to the refiner. Add in freight to the retailer, retail profit, and tax, in a normal price sturcture it seems to me that gasoline should already be $5-$6/gal retail.

Anybody know why its so cheap? Really.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | March 17, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

'since you asked I would eliminate SS, Medicare, roads bridges,tricare, food inspection, FDIC, police and fire protection .

None of these things is appropriate for the federal government to run, some can be handed to states but most are individual problems.'

yes, people should definitely inspect their own food -- and medication -- because we are all trained chemists and biologists. we should also build our own bridges and put out our own fires. what passes for 'thinking' among cons is truly frightening. they really DO want to live in a third world country. my question is, why not then move to China, or Congo?

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

A fix break? Isn't that an oxymoron?

Or at the very least something one needs a twelve step program for?

Or maybe a straitjacket?

Watch out, Mrs. Fix. He might not make it past the third day.

If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Posted by: optimyst | March 17, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

'massive reserves' a complete fantasy:

'United States proven oil reserves declined to a little less than 21 gigabarrels as of 2006 according to the Energy Information Administration, a 46% decline from 1970. With production of around 5 million barrels per day as of 2006, this represents about an 11 year supply of oil at current rates. With consumption at 21 million barrels per day (7.7 gigabarrels per year) (2007), US reserves alone could satisfy US demand for only three years.

No oil fields have been found in the US since 1970. With over 2.3 million wells having been drilled in the US since 1949,[there are very few unexplored areas left where another supergiant oil field is likely to be found.[ US oil reserve numbers are very accurate compared to those of most other countries.

United States crude oil production peaked in late 1970 at over 4 gigabarrels per year, but declined to 1.8 gigabarrels per year as of 2006. At the same time, US consumption of petroleum products increased to over 7.3 gigabarrels per year. The difference ( 5.5 gigabarrels ) was mostly made up by imports, with the largest supplier being Canada, which increased its exports of crude oil and refined products to the US to 0.8 gigabarrels per year as of 2005. Imports of oil and products now account for nearly half of the US trade deficit.

As of 2007, the Energy Information Agency (EIA) of the U.S. Department of Energy projected that in 2007 oil consumption would rise to 20.9 million barrels per day, while oil production would fall to 5.1 million barrels per day, meaning that oil consumption would be nearly four times as high as oil production

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 3:16 PM | Report abuse

bsimon -

From what I've read, "MASSIVE" is an understatement. We have decades of reserves.

I agree with you, we need to find something better.

I also agree that 4.00/gallon is obscene.

Let's drill here, and have a Kennedy-style to-the-moon by 20XX plan.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 3:16 PM | Report abuse

this is exactly why I don't want college students running SS.
"If it is so wonderful of an idea, why is it always broken and failing and such a bad deal. why is SS 1% return when the stock market is 8%?"

Always boke. Which conservative think tank fed you that nonsense.
8%???? Anyone retiring this year and dependent on the market's retun this year is screwed based on the return of the DOW, NASDAQ which has lost 2200 points since Oct.

I am comforted to know that conservatives do not believe that building roads and bridges, providing police and fire protection, FDIC insurance, and food inspection are proper roles for their govt. Wave to the guy in the toll booth and when you use the Chesapeak Tunnel,and your police and fire dept and tell them that you are a strong conservative who doesn't need these services and will swim and put out your own fires. Interesting, in my UT eco graduate program we discussed marco economics and tax policies.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Mike, my response to your 2:57 was lost. The quick summary is that a devalued dollar is not the same thing as inflation, despite your arguments otherwise.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

"Why can't we drill, here in the USA, where we know we have MASSIVE oil reserves?"

Reasons I don't think its necessary to drill here. 1) such a plan merely postpones the inevitable need to wean ourselves from oil as a primary fuel. 2) even if we eventually burn that fuel (our underground reserves), the value of those reserves rises, the longer we wait to tap them. 3) the supply-demand relationship is only one factor in the recent, sudden rise in the price of oil.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

bsimon - consider this your daily economics lesson.

Inflation is a rise in the general level of prices over time. (No specific reason is necessarily stated).

A Weak Dollar is the relative decline in the value of the dollar compared to other currencies.

Let's assume the US has a big debt with China, payable in a fixed sum of DOLLARS.

Now, let's assume the dollar is weaker than 1 year ago.

The US still pays the agreed upon sum of dollars.

But those dollars don't buy as many Yuan, hence you are paying back with cheaper dollars.

Weakening Dollar
Advantages

U.S. firms find it easier to sell goods in foreign markets.

U.S. firms find less competitive pressure to keep prices low.

More foreign tourists can afford to visit the U.S.

U.S. capital markets become more attractive to foreign investors.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 2:57 PM | Report abuse

"What was the price of oil just prior to the US invasion of Iraq? Anyone know?"

I don't know exactly. I do know it was about $32/bbl 6 years ago (as far back as my source shows prices).

Iraq is only one variable. There's also worldwide rising demand, and the weak dollar. If you can, try to find charts of the dollar's value & the price of oil. You will notice an inverse relationship over the last year, where the dollar's value falls, while the price/bbl rises.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 2:57 PM | Report abuse

"It is not in OPEC's best interest for it's best customer to go into Recession "

We get all our oil from Canada and Mexico. but the world price is linked as is a world recession. You had no idea when you voted in the Pelosi congress that all this financial difficulty would ensue did you?

Care to rethink your immediate exit from Iraq strategy?

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

What supply are you imagining is available for our immediate consumption to drive down prices in the short term?

Is that your goal? More liberal fantasy? Put off making hard decisions? regulate the price like some Soviet? you are a true Lib. why decide today what can be twice as expensive to do tomorrow?

My kids have been drinking a lot of milk lately. once you get gas prices fixed, can you move on to milk. After that I have a whole list of things I would like to be cheaper. the government should do something!!!

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

bsimon - no one needs to be rude.

Why can't we drill, here in the USA, where we know we have MASSIVE oil reserves?

Frogs?

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

USMC_Mike writes
"[a weak dollar] also means other "good" things, like paying back debt with cheaper dollars"

Also, Mike, you're confusing inflation with a weak dollar. Inflation would mean paying back debt with cheaper dollars. A weak dollar does not mean the same thing, though the current economic situation that created the weak dollar will also likely end up causing inflation.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

from Zoukie: "Lowering the price (of oil) is a false goal."

I actually agree with Zouk on this point. But that is for the long term. For our nation's long-term health we simply HAVE to stop being oil-junkies. Is not only economically debilitating, but also, it is geo-political suicide. If we wish to remain the world's # 1 power, we have to become energy independent.

BUT - for the short term, this is the hand we have, so how best do we play it?

Yes, perhaps we can pressure OPEC into opening up the spigot. Even though Dubya failed, we really don't know how hard he tried, do we? It is not in OPEC's best interest for it's best customer to go into Recession (or worse -- I really think we're seeing just the tip of the iceberg). They need us to be economically viable.

When it comes to the impressive climb of oil prices, all roads lead to Iraq.

What was the price of oil just prior to the US invasion of Iraq? Anyone know?

I don't know off hand, I'm askin'.

Posted by: AdrickHenry | March 17, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Bush came into office [price of oil: slightly over a dollar a gallon] promising he would 'jawbone' OPEC into raising production. He has been begging them -- but they refuse. They just don't feel like it.

Can't wait to see how well this works on al queda as the only approach.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

"Just as I didn't mention a weak dollar, you didn't mention increasing supply. "

Duh. Because there's not a magic wand to be waved that will increase supply. What I DID do, was mention President Bush's recent petition to OPEC to increase supply, which they declined to do.

What supply are you imagining is available for our immediate consumption to drive down prices in the short term?

I suppose everything is simplified, if you aren't constrained by reality.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Lickme man:

Incidentally I asked if you were willing to forfeit your Pell grant and asked about specific programs above including SS, Medicare, roads bridges,tricare, food inspection, FDIC, police and fire protection and asked which of those wasteful programs you wish to lower your taxes from 37%. Why don't you run off and ask your professors which of these policies they would end.


first It is not for professors to make policy decisions, this is the pervue of elected officials. I know you Libs think you know everything better then us, but let's just pretend that you need to be elected first.

since you asked I would eliminate SS, Medicare, roads bridges,tricare, food inspection, FDIC, police and fire protection .

None of these things is appropriate for the federal government to run, some can be handed to states but most are individual problems. More liberal arrogance that you know what's best for us. If it is so wonderful of an idea, why is it always broken and failing and such a bad deal. why is SS 1% return when the stock market is 8%? why is this ponzi scheme illegal in the private sector?

I would allow tricare since it is a bargained benefit owed to military members. you see, the military is actually something that benefits us all and is even in the constitution. what a novel idea.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Just as I didn't mention a weak dollar, you didn't mention increasing supply. (and still haven't).

"Weak dollar means expensive commodities, to Americans anyway. "

It also means other "good" things, like paying back debt with cheaper dollars, and our products being relatively "cheap", boosting companies like Caterpillar's international sales to record highs.

It's simple and it's complicated.

Unfortunately, you tend to over-complicate the simple (INCREASE DEMAND),

and over-simplify the complicated (STRENGTHEN THE DOLLAR).

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

"Becoming independent -- a viable, and necessary, long-term solution. Won't help a lick this summer. I don't know what you drive, but I'll be hurting"

I drive a Ford Ranger, but I'll probably bike to work a fair amount this summer.

The best way to become independent is to wean ourselves from oil. Its a non-renewable resource that, as you noted, we have to import. Unfortunately, that is not a short-term solution.

I find it strange that you didn't address the impact of the weak dollar on the price of oil. Why is it so offensive to you that I suggested we should address that problem as part of a solution to the problem of expensive oil? Have you not noticed that other commodities, like wheat, corn, gold and copper are all at record prices? Coincidentally, they're all priced in dollars. Weak dollar means expensive commodities, to Americans anyway.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 2:41 PM | Report abuse

General drindl - You blame Bush for OPEC's refusal?

It's "OK" by you for them to just not "feel like it"?

You'll scratch and scrape for ANY reason to blame Bush.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 2:40 PM | Report abuse

'the summary answer is that the rise in prices is the signal to the marketplace that is is now time to find a profitable way to energize our society differently. '

well look at this -- even a blind pig finds an acorn sometimes. indeed.

Bush came into office [price of oil: slightly over a dollar a gallon] promising he would 'jawbone' OPEC into raising production. He has been begging them -- but they refuse. They just don't feel like it.

And try to convince the oil companies to refine more -- they think things are just fine. They will make even biggr record profits this year.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Drive up the value of the dollar.

Reduce deficit spending.

Reduce trade imbalance.

Promote alt-fuels, to reduce demand.

simple simon chimes in with his economically naive statements. all these efforts will do is substitute one expensive good for another. Instead of expensive oil, we get expensive silk, or some other foreign product. We offer to sacrifice American products to get it, such as ford trucks.

Libs: oil is worth the money. Otherwise you wouldn't pay.

did you know that in Iceland heat is free. they have underground thermal volcanic activity that the government has harnessed and provided at almost no cost to the citizens. consider what this does to their energy market. but in exchange, a plate of spaghetti costs over ten bucks.

Poor disillusioned Libs, believing all those political lies, like there is free stuff in the world.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

bsimon

"In a theoretical world, that works. In the real world, there isn't necessarily additional supply available."

Let's be clear.

It's not a lack of available supply, as you propose.

It's about extremist environmentalism trumping common sense.

We have plenty of oil at home. That's a short-term solution, for our ucurrent short term problem.

Becoming independent -- a viable, and necessary, long-term solution. Won't help a lick this summer. I don't know what you drive, but I'll be hurting.

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 2:34 PM | Report abuse

The 6% loss in polling was a 3 way matchup with McCain, Nader and Obama so if your side is happy losing 6% to Nader in a weekend I wish you many many more such succesful weekends.

Personally I will listen to folks out in the real world like Bob Ruben,John Matts and Thomas Nides CEO and CFO at Morgan Stanley(along with 100s of CEOs) and Robert Reich before academia regarding how we get the Bush recession out of the ditch. Incidnetally I asked if you were willing to forfeit your Pell grant and asked about specific programs above including SS, Medicare, roads bridges,tricare, food inspection, FDIC, police and fire protection and asked which of those wasteful programs you wish to lower your taxes from 37%. Why don't you run off and ask your professors which of these policies they would end.

I'm for nuclear as long as we can dump the waste in your back yard. Didn't see the word conservation or higher fuel efficiency standards in your suggestions I should have known that should never ever be in the mix.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

we need to discover new energy sources. oil is only going to keep going up:

"It's no secret anymore that for every nine barrels of oil we consume, we are only discovering one."
-The BP Statistical Review of World Energy

The world is addicted to oil. In just 8 years, it's projected the world will be consuming nearly 50,000 gallons of oil every second.

By that time, the world won't be able to meet the projected demand... for one simple reason: We're using up oil at breakneck speed.

And it's also no secret that official oil reserve numbers furnished by OPEC member governments have been fudged for years. The International Energy Agency (IEA) even admitted to knowing about some of OPEC's wizards cooking their books.

Still, OPEC claims they can increase their production to 20 million barrels of crude oil per day. But how can they increase their output when it's been found that OPEC Middle East oil nations, even Saudi Arabia, are pumping oil from known "post-production" fields?

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

USMC_Mike writes
"INCREASE SUPPLY."

In a theoretical world, that works. In the real world, there isn't necessarily additional supply available. I understand OPEC recently declined to increase supply, despite President Bush asking Pretty Please, with Sugar on top. Of course, the predictable followup is "Well, open ANWR then," which wouldn't be available for 10 years or thereabouts.

Given that 30 to 40 dollars of the price hike in oil is due to the declining value of the US dollar, that seems like a sensible thing to address first, which has the added benefit of lowering the prices for all commodities - which are all at or near record highs.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Do you think the Bear Stearns bailout qualifies as 'massive government intervetion that creates new distortions and free-lunch illusions'?

Yes I do.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

zouk, who appears to be blind in one eye, writes
"massive government intervention... creates new distortions and free-lunch illusions."

Do you think the Bear Stearns bailout qualifies as 'massive government intervetion that creates new distortions and free-lunch illusions'?

"There's NO welfare, like CORPORATE welfare..."
-The Singing Senators

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

MORE GOVERNMENT INTERVENTION is coming from the Republican-led Fed -- period.

Pouring taxpayer money into failing financial solutions -- the REPUBLIC SOCIALISM answer to everything. BAIL OUT the biggest offenders [whose CEO's made millions while creating an enormous financial disaster] -- WITH TAXPAYER MONEY.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 2:24 PM | Report abuse

bsimon - you missed the most obvious:

INCREASE SUPPLY.


Econ 101?

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Have a great break CC. Enjoy man.

Posted by: bryant_flier2006 | March 17, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

"How do we drive down the price of oil?"

Drive up the value of the dollar.

Reduce deficit spending.

Reduce trade imbalance.

Promote alt-fuels, to reduce demand.


I had an odd thought this AM; the Feds should raise taxes on the rich, as part of a program to balance the fed budget. To partially offset the sting of such legislation, create a new tax write-off for income from US T-Bills. In other words, incent the rich in the US to start buying the T-bills that are currently being snapped up by overseas investors.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Lowering the price of oil is no real mystery. It is simple supply and demand. china and india have increased demand so either supply must go up or the price must go up, all other things being equal. Lowering the price is a false goal. Pricing it according to its value is what is required. It is a high value commodity requiring large capital investment, inordinate risk, international presence, shipping, legal, marketing, technology, innovation, tight margins, etc.


We can start by drilling more, building more refineries, converting to nuclear, wind power, solar, etc. these things have only become economically viable with increased prices. regulation, government intervention and congressional meddling only add additional costs to the situation. Just look at what the corn market has done to everything it touches now.
another option is to reduce demand. good luck with that one. buy a smaller car.

the summary answer is that the rise in prices is the signal to the marketplace that is is now time to find a profitable way to energize our society differently. no government, hysterical liberal shrieking or massive regulation and intervention is required. Message received. I recommend you build a hydrogen powered car and get rich off it. If it can lap my Porsche, I will consider one. Or perhaps Dylithium crystals.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

the Dem solution - surprise - MORE government:

Similarly, massive government intervention, whether it be through moratoriums on foreclosures and interest-rate freezes, like Democratic presidential contender Hillary Rodham Clinton wants, or government takeovers and refinancing of loans, closer to what we're hearing from her rival for the nomination, Barack Obama, creates new distortions and free-lunch illusions.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Zouk, you are our self-proclaimed econ expert, so... putting aside party loyalties, let me ask you for an honest expostion:

How do we drive down the price of oil?

Do we really have so little leverage with the Saudis? Let's face it, they control OPEC. Our President visited with them recently but did not seem to make much headway with them. What is the secret here? This high price of oil is rippling through our entire economy.

Based on your vast knowledge of economics, how do we reduce the price of oil?

Posted by: AdrickHenry | March 17, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

In other news, Sen Norm Coleman (R-MN), is breaking with Republican orthodoxy, in admitting the US economy is in the tank. Coleman is expected to face satirist Al Franken in the general election, which, ironically, is forcing the Senator to face reality.

http://wcco.com/politics/coleman.recession.economy.2.677445.html

"The Minnesota senator said he differs from President Bush about the nation's economic struggles... During an interview on CNN, Coleman said he would "be more forthright about telling the American public that we're in a recession." "

No word yet on whether Sen Coleman is ready to admit that cutting taxes while boosting spending is responsibly conservative fiscal policy.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone see a connection between the invasion and occupation of Iraq and the price of oil breaking $100 a barrel?

Does anyone see a connection between the price of oil exceeding $100 a barrel and the economic woes of the US today?

Posted by: AdrickHenry | March 17, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

"Zogby on Potus indicates that numbers of Obama voters he has polled (as many as 6%) have moved to undecided or Nader in weekend polling."

It's curious that they haven't gone to Clinton. That seems to support the argument that 1) Obama is expanding the party and/or attracting swing voters and 2) Clinton won't.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

I am afraid that Mason teaches actual econ, not the Liberal version you prefer. In the Mason courses, if you answered on a test that is is a good idea to raise taxes in a down economy, you would fail, not get elected.

We have two nobel prize winners and Williams. you have John edwards.

In fact, I took years of graduate econ (three degrees, one in progress)) and never learned all the stuff you see on this blog every day. Something is amiss.

could it be that Libs have no clue? either that or nobel economists don't. Hmmmm.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

get some bumper stickers printed up, Addrick...

hey, i'll buy one from you and put it on my car proudly!

MCCAIN/CHENEY '08

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Zogby on Potus indicates that numbers of Obama voters he has polled (as many as 6%) have moved to undecided or Nader in weekend polling.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Cheney and McCain both in Iraq... at the same time?!?! Plotting. Strategizing. Determining the future of Iraq (and Iran)?

Could it be?

Dick Cheney for Veep?

McCain / Cheney '08

Posted by: AdrickHenry | March 17, 2008 1:57 PM | Report abuse

things looking really bad for repugs:

(CNN) -- Nearly three-quarters of all Americans think the economy is in a recession, according to a national poll released Monday.

Brokers at the New York Stock Exchange aren't the only Americans feeling anxious about the economy.

Seventy-four percent of those questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corp. survey say the economy has entered a recession.

That figure is up from 66 percent who felt that way in a similar survey last month. The number stood at 61 percent in January and 46 percent in October.

It's no surprise then that the economy remains the key issue in the public's mind.

By a 2-1 margin, it tops the Iraq war as the No. 1 issue for Americans in their choice for president.

"Forty-two percent of those polled say the economy is the biggest issue on their minds, nearly double the amount who felt that way in October, the last time Iraq topped the list as the most important issue," said Keating Holland, CNN's polling director.

Iraq ranks as the second most important issue, at 21 percent, followed by health care at 18 percent, terrorism at 9 percent and immigration at 7 percent.'

gee, that's tough, ain't it? for all their trying the GOP just can't get people to hate and fear enough to elect them. The sinking republican economy -- yet another Bush rcession -- is all they can thik about. Oh, that and the Iraq war.

Six months from now -- when Iraq has only gotten worse and gas is $6 a gallon -- it's goig to be a landslide for Dems, no matter who the candidate is.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 1:57 PM | Report abuse

dufus, I see you have once again expanded your vocabulary. Now go to class and learn something about economics.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

When the Dems finally nominate a candidate, sometime before next November would be good, then they can join the discussion of general election issues.

Until then, the libs would be better off keeping opinions and offers of advise to themselves. They certainly need it.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | March 17, 2008 1:40 PM | Report abuse

drindl - give it a rest. We get it, you changed your medication again. go back and hang out at Kos today.

Lick me man - not all college students are in their 20's, especially at Mason. your ignorant assumptions you use to "win" arguments are pitiful. you make a good hillary dufas. get used to losing. so much for the fantasy that clintons are the most well liked pols in the world. Even Dems don't like them. In fact, they are so despised, the Dems are willing to gamble it all on a no name upstart.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

I see you have found another word in your vocabulary today.Congratulations you have officially graduated from the second grade.

I impressed to know that I am arguing with a 20 year old that obviously comes here with a lot of real world experiences to be able to communicate so eloquently.

Incidentally, which of the above federal programs would you like to cut first. As a college student can I start by suggesting that we first cut your Pell Grant, so that you won't have to be in the 37% tax rate.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

I guess FIX can't keep up with the campaigners, many of whom have been working everyday since May '07. Oh, well.

Enjoy, kick back and relax, the show will still be going on when you get back and Obama will be even further ahead,

Posted by: thebobbob | March 17, 2008 1:20 PM | Report abuse

President Hoover is giving us socialism now:

'On Saturday, Martin Feldstein, president of the Cambridge/Harvard economic research group that makes the official call on whether we're in recession, delivered his opinion. His assessment was that we're not only in a recession but could be facing the worst recession since World War II. "The situation is bad, it's getting worse, and the risks are that the situation could be very bad," he warned. Udpdate II: Alan Greenspan concurs.

To borrow my favorite economic term, this is serious stuff. We need the wisest, most mature leadership we can muster to avert a serious recession or worse. The entire financial system is on the verge of collapse, with the Fed using every tool in its limited monetary arsenal to prop up confidence in the system.

Markets? The Fed has already used $400 billion of its $800 billion of readily available funds trying to bail out the wizards of Wall Street, and is facing the need to print money -- and risk inflation -- to retain further leverage. The Fed is in the process of taking over and running Wall Street financial institutions, only a step removed from nationalization.

Meanwhile, we're stuck with President Hoover and in desparate need of FDR. So it would be helpful if the media, who are recently into censoring black ministers, began instead to ask Obama and Clinton about how good their economic advisers are.'

'only a step removed from nationalization.' REPUBLICAN SOCIALISM.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

mark: my wife is a Mason grad. I follow them closely -- I got to go to the regionals two years ago when they beat UConn; that was a fantastic sporting event.

This year's team plays great defense. They should be able to do a good job on Harangody. The key will be which team hits the threes. GMU definitely has more than a puncher's chance, plus it's one of the dreaded 5-12 games that always produce upsets.

Also watch a guy on Mason named Louis Birdsong; he's just a sophomore but he's an incredible offensive talent. He's a product of the talent rich Baltimore area.

Posted by: Spectator2 | March 17, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Congratulations you have officially garduated from the second grade.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 12:53 PM

I know you Libs are into self esteem and all, but at our schools we actually don't "garduate" until 12 full years.

and when we tell jokes, they are funny.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

"a woman wearing a suicide vest "

that terrorist recruiting not going so well these days. Let the women do it, I'll have my virgins here.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 1:10 PM | Report abuse

KOZ, did you say you are at George Mason?
Any bb insights?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | March 17, 2008 01:03 PM

basketball been berry berry good to DC this year. they decided to get good after I left campus and can't get the free tix any more.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

BAGHDAD, March 17 (Reuters) - U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney on Monday declared the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq a "successful endeavour" in a visit to Iraq that was overshadowed by a suicide bombing that killed at least 25 people.

The Iraq war is a major issue in the U.S. presidential campaign. As it enters it sixth year, the war has cost the U.S. economy $500 billion and seen nearly 4,000 U.S. soldiers and tens of thousands of Iraqis killed.

Shortly after Cheney spoke, a woman wearing a suicide vest blew herself up in a cafe in the southern holy Shi'ite city of Kerbala, killing 25 people and wounding 50, police and health officials said. Bombs in Baghdad killed four and wounded 13.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Mike, I had not looked at the brackets! Ucla in game 2 is tough. The Aggies have disappointed since preconference, I think because Jordan is a "lazy" learner and because their outside shooting is suspect.

But there is a lot of talent there.

Andy, as Bill Clinton would say, "I feel your pain".

KOZ, did you say you are at George Mason?
Any bb insights?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | March 17, 2008 1:03 PM | Report abuse

another one about to go down:

'SINGAPORE (AP) - Shares of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. plunged in premarket trading Monday after a news report that Southeast Asia's largest bank instructed traders in an e-mail not to do business with the bank.'

and more 'good news' from Iraq:

KERBALA, Iraq (Reuters) - A female suicide bomber killed 25 people and wounded 16 in an attack in the holy Shi'ite city of Kerbala in southern Iraq, police and health officials said on Monday.

The attack took place in a cafe in the centre of the city close to Shi'ite shrines, among the holiest sites in Shi'ite Islam, police said. Provincial governor Aqeel Khazali confirmed that a woman had carried out the bombing but had no further details.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 1:03 PM | Report abuse

I see you have found another word in your vocabulary today.Congratulations you have officially garduated from the second grade.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 12:53 PM | Report abuse

No actually Greenspan was responsible for lessening mtg requirements, you need Greenspan that San Fra george H Bush lib

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

leichtman - you clintonistas are getting more hysterical, desperate and shrill with every passing day.

I am reminded of the black knight in monty Python who after having all his arms and legs cut off, demanded to be put on the top of the ticket.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

The lies won't work. People don't beleive them anymore. They only know that they are hurting financially and republicans have brought this down on them. And YOU, taxpayers are going to pay to bail out the financial institutions whose deregulation and corruption have caused this mess. You, the taxpayer are buying the useless crap that Bear Stearns can't unload:

'To help facilitate the deal, the Federal Reserve is taking the extraordinary step of providing as much as $30 billion in financing for Bear Stearns's less-liquid assets, such as mortgage securities that the firm has been unable to sell, in what is believed to be the largest Fed advance on record to a single company. Fed officials wouldn't describe the exact financing terms or assets involved. But if those assets decline in value, the Fed [taxpayers] would bear any loss, not J.P. Morgan.'

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

More like:

And lest we forget, none of this had to happen. Liberal government manipulation, once again, totally overshot, taking a fine idea--providing credit so that folks who aren't rich can own homes- and forcing the market which had worked splendidly for decades, to accept losing ideas.

no downpayment - no problem
bad credit, who is the government to tell you to pay your bills on time
no job - bush did it

Pelosi et al will fix it for you. you have a right to own your own home and the Libs will pay for it one way or the other. In this case, it is the other.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

we get it, you don't want to spend money on anything b/c it is your money. So please don't use your roads, bridges,please ask your libraries and police departments to shut down so you can now start paying zero in taxes. That is right the budget should only be used to pay intrest on the debt and blackwater and the troops should pay for their own durn body armour and tricare should be removed from the reserves, they need to learn to fend for themselves, right. That is it, shut down social sceurity, medicare, and the fda, lets star eating tainted food(read the Jungle you might then understand that reference) and throw the elderly back into hoover towns you definitely have the right idea. And lets certainly do away with federal deposit insurance because that is just a bunch of lib socialism.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

bad news gets worse:

'Bear Stearns had a stock-market value of about $3.5 billion as of Friday -- and was worth $20 billion in January 2007. But the crisis of confidence that swept the firm and fueled a customer exodus in recent days left Bear Stearns with a horrible choice: sell the firm -- at any price -- to a big bank willing to assume its trading obligations or file for bankruptcy.

"At the end of the day, what Bear Stearns was looking at was either taking $2 a share or going bust," said one person involved in the negotiations. "Those were the only options."

To help facilitate the deal, the Federal Reserve is taking the extraordinary step of providing as much as $30 billion in financing for Bear Stearns's less-liquid assets, such as mortgage securities that the firm has been unable to sell, in what is believed to be the largest Fed advance on record to a single company. Fed officials wouldn't describe the exact financing terms or assets involved. But if those assets decline in value, the Fed would bear any loss, not J.P. Morgan.

.....

Former Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin last week described the situation as "uncharted waters," a view echoed privately by top government officials. Those officials have been scrambling to come up with new tools because the old ones aren't suited for this 21st-century crisis, in which financial innovation has rendered many institutions not "too big too fail," but "too interconnected to be allowed to fail suddenly.""

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

'All of which raises some very big, very good questions: What's the risk engendered by these bailouts for the rest of us? There's a good argument to be made for the bailout but not if the fat cats get to skate on by unscathed. At the heart of the bailout is the Fed taking on the very smelliest part of the BS portfolio: the mortgatge debt. I'd like to know what we're getting in return.

And lest we forget, none of this had to happen. Market capitalism, once again, totally overshot, taking a fine idea--providing credit so that folks who aren't rich can own homes--and slicing and dicing it until no one understood the financial Frankenstein they'd created. The government and the Fed turned a blind eye, which was fine with the "innovators." Now that the monster has turned on them, they're running back to the gov't to bail them out.'

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Like spending, like tax cuts, like anarchy?

vote D!

the Democrats' budget proposal.

As details trickle out, it appears that this proposal will be $276 billion above the President's level in total discretionary spending. $22-23 billion of that is in nondefense discretionary spending above the President's level.

This budget appears to raise taxes by $683 billion over 5 years by claiming automatic, scheduled increases in marginal rates (including elimination of 10-percent bracket), higher taxes on marriage and children, higher taxes on investments, small businesses, and estates, and other tax hikes (current record tax increase is held by the 1993 Clinton tax increase of $240.6 billion over 5 years).

And there has been no mention of entitlement reform.

These details are on top of the Budget that the President submitted several weeks ago. I didn't particularly like the spending level in the President's Budget, and this is even worse.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Mark,
I either cheer for the NC State Wolfpack or any team playing UNC. So right now I am in a holding pattern but I am hoping it is Coppin State that beats the dreaded Tarheels.

Posted by: AndyR3 | March 17, 2008 12:24 PM | Report abuse

drindl - if you really want to asess blame - your reason for being, look no further than the Lib congress who changed all Mortgage regulations so that the "right" to own a home would be allowed for anyone, even in Pelosi's district. Yet, just like the right to health care, the consequences escape Libs every time. guess who pays? not the rich - everyone.

I wonder what the consequences of losing a war could be? If you are a Lib, you would like to find out.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 12:20 PM | Report abuse

'Between 2002 and 2007, false beliefs in the private sector -- the belief that home prices only go up, that financial innovation had made risk go away, that a triple-A rating really meant that an investment was safe -- led to an epidemic of bad lending. Meanwhile, false beliefs in the political arena -- the belief of Alan Greenspan and his friends in the Bush administration that the market is always right and regulation always a bad thing -- led Washington to ignore the warning signs.

The result of all that bad lending was an unholy financial mess that will cause trillions of dollars in losses. A large chunk of these losses will fall on financial institutions: commercial banks, investment banks, hedge funds and so on.'

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Paul Wolfowitz got it right after all, more or less. Five years ago, he predicted that the war in Iraq would be financed with Iraqi oil. It turns out that he was right. The New York Times is now reporting that the Iraqi insurgency is being funded by proceeds from stolen oil. The only thing that Wolfowitz got wrong was which side would be financed by the oil.

The story underlines the failure of imperial hubris exemplified by Wolfowitz in particular and American foreign policy in general. The American army may be the most most powerful, technologically advanced, and best trained army that the world has ever seen, yet has no effective counter to a committed guerrilla insurgency.
'
BAIJI, Iraq -- The Baiji refinery, with its distillation towers rising against the Hamrin Mountains, may be the most important industrial site in the Sunni Arab-dominated regions of Iraq. On a good day, 500 tanker trucks will leave the refinery filled with fuel with a street value of $10 million.

The sea of oil under Iraq is supposed to rebuild the nation, then make it prosper. But at least one-third, and possibly much more, of the fuel from Iraq's largest refinery here is diverted to the black market, according to American military officials. Tankers are hijacked, drivers are bribed, papers are forged and meters are manipulated -- and some of the earnings go to insurgents who are still killing more than 100 Iraqis a week.

"It's the money pit of the insurgency," said Capt. Joe Da Silva, who commands several platoons stationed at the refinery.'

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 12:08 PM | Report abuse

"the Obama defense:

"I can't be expected to know anything."

"

*chuckles*. I think that pretty much sums it up.


Mark: Do you realize that A&M will play UCLA if they beat BYU? I don't know about that one...

But, I'll be watching. It looks like the Longhorns will have a fairly easier time making it, depending on the Miami/St. Mary's game, no?

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 12:03 PM | Report abuse

drindl - it is contrary to your nature to proclaim that the sky is falling based on something the Dem congress did. why do you think it is called the Pelosi recession? are you considering telling the truth for once?

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 12:00 PM | Report abuse

The notion that Obama never heard any such nonsense is, well, nonsense--given that he frequented the church for 20 years, laughed off some of the Wright hyperbole in his own memoirs, and has a wife whose invective about America as not worthy of her pride, mean, etc dovetails with his pastor's sermons. Moreover, his own past interviews belie his most recent assertion that Wright was merely his pastor, rather than a political advisor. And we learn that during those tough years in which Michelle Obama was whining about having to budget money to pay back those government-guaranteed student loans to Harvard Law School, the Obamas were giving thousands of dollars each year to subsidize the Wright hatred. Messiahs are supposed to tell the whole truth, and nothing but the truth--and all the time.

This is hope and change and the new transparency?

The Dean Syndrome

What we have here is a bright, eloquent, and utterly insular candidate, incredibly naïve, with terrible judgment who is absolutely clueless about America. He seems an improved model of Howard Dean--opinionated, snazzy, faddish, riding on popular insanity--and then in one fell swoop ("Yeaaahhhhhhh") ridiculous. It may well be that the old guard Democratic elite, as nervous now at the popular Obama hysteria as they were over the flash-in-the-pan Deanomaniacs, may have to impose a buyer's remorse "Kerry solution" and step in as super-delegates to stop the hysteria nonsense and get behind the plodding Hillary workhorse. But unlike the Dean implosion, the Obama crack-up is much later in the game.

You see, the problem is that the Obamas have had two only audiences in their lives, both narrow and, worse, fawning: one, apparently a highly politicized and often angry Chicago African-American constituency that believes in AIDs conspiracies and the pathological role of the United States, and, two, a guilt-ridden elite white audience in the Ivy League and the media who does not object to, or in fact enjoys, being told why America is the sort of awful place Rev. Wright depicts.

VDH

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Lib math:

But as much as the Obama campaign scoffs, Clinton just doesn't seem to be out of it. Yes, she is behind in delegates, but the system of awarding those delegates makes no sense. Clinton won Texas, but Obama got more delegates. Obama gained more net delegates by winning Mississippi and Wyoming than Clinton did by winning Texas and Ohio. You tell me how that's right.


Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse

While investors were focused on the financial sector, fresh economic news offered little solace. The Fed said output at the country's factories, mines and utilities fell by one-half percent in February, the biggest decline last October. Many analysts had been expecting a slight increase of one-tenth of one percent.

Also, the Fed's Manufacturing Survey indicated that conditions for manufacturers deteriorated further in March.'

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse


" JP Morgan just bought Bear Sterns for less than the price of the office building it's housed in and then the Fed cut interest rates another quarter of a point to try to cushion the blow.

The Fed approved the financing arrangement announced by JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Bear Stearns Cos. JPMorgan separately agreed to buy Bear Stearns for about $2 a share."

$2 a share. Down from $80 a very short time ago. This is how deep the trouble is.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Ted Kennedy Dumps Fuel into Nantucket Sound

http://www.newsmax.com/insidecover/Kennedy_polluter/2008/03/14/80443.html

Of course this is as much a surprise as "Dem gets caught with pants down".

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

A NEW DAY, A NEW HIGH FOR OIL, A NEW LOW FOR THE DOLLAR.

Get used to it folks. This is what Republican rule has done to us. Destroyed not only our own ecomony but on the wya to destroying the entire world's.

Source: Reuters

'TOKYO (Reuters) - Oil jumped to a record above $111 a barrel on Monday, as a surprise weekend cut in the Federal Reserve discount rate and the fire sale of stricken U.S. investment bank Bear Stearns (BSC.N) sent the dollar to all-time lows.'

This fall, when oil prices are $6 a gallon, diesel prices are at records levels and shipping slows, the economy sheds more jobs and hits rock bottom, and the dollar is worth less than a peso, I doubt if people are going to be thinking so much about obama's preacher.

they will be wonderig how their families are going to survive.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Thank you! Now if only all of the strategists and pundits would follow your lead - we could all use a break from the mass media nonsense, and what better time to have that break than during a six week lull in meaningful campaign activity.

Posted by: thecrisis | March 17, 2008 11:40 AM | Report abuse

the Obama defense:

"I can't be expected to know anything."

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 11:34 AM | Report abuse

leichtmen - JEP is one of drindl's jackels.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 11:33 AM | Report abuse

JEP7 if your campaign is so upset with Republicans crossing over, then why is your campaign spending major dollars on Pa radio ASKING REPUBLICANS TO CHANGE THEIR REGISTRATION AND VOTE FOR SENATOR OBAMA? Are those the only Pa voters that your campaign is convinced they can win?

can you spell hypocrisy?

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

I see drindl is in hyperactive hate mode this morning. all that quality time with the family must really unnerve you.

I find it most amusing that Obama had no idea that his own preacher of over 20 years says those things, yet we are supposed to believe that he will be fully aware of what N Korea is saying and doing, where al queda is hiding (hint, they aren't in Iraq) , what Iran intends to do ( I never heard they wanted to kill us) etc.

his cabinet will be a circus of clowns who he never realized were like "that". you'd think with those gigantic ears, he would be able to hear better.

Posted by: kingofzouk | March 17, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

"AggieMike, if Sloan and Jones do not get into foul trouble and that huge freshman center pays attention, I see Sweet 16 for the Aggies."

I hope you're right Mark. Will be watching...

Posted by: USMC_Mike | March 17, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

and here's a repudiation of yet another of Bill Kristol's lies..

'Marc Ambinder reports Bill Kristol's NYT column today contains "a major, prejudicial error." Kristol asserts that Obama "was in fact in the pews" when pastor Jeremiah Wright blamed the "arrogance" of the "United States of White America" for much of the world's suffering. Kristol's "source" for the claim is a story reported by the right-wing publication Newsmax. Ambinder writes:

The error is in trusting the source without checking.

The truth is that Obama did not attend church on July 22.

He was on his way to campaign in Miami.

(Here is some video evidence.) This was before he signed an agreement forbidding himself from campaigning in Florida.

Sadly, this isn't Kristol's first error. He misattributed a quote in his first column for the paper.'

http://thinkprogress.org/2008/03/17/kristol-commits-major-error-in-nyt-column/

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

OOPS; here's the proper link to that Globe story about almost a quarter million Republicans voting for Hillary so they can beat her in November.
http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2008/03/17/many_voting_for_clinton_to_boost_gop/

Posted by: JEP7 | March 17, 2008 11:16 AM | Report abuse

DOes this mean we can run rampant all over the thread for a week?

Yee Haw!

For anyone who previously doubted that the Republicans are voting for Hillary in the primaries, as a tactic to make sure they will have her around to beat on after the convention, just go to this Boston Globe article.
http://www.blogger.com/post-create.g?blogID=352464978493976133

This alone should make every loyal Democrat determined to support Obama, and not in disrespect for Hillary, but in simple, logical strategy intended to beat Mccain and his Rovian puppet-masters.

Posted by: JEP7 | March 17, 2008 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Enjoy your break. You'll be missed.

Hoya Saxa!

(Col' 03)

Posted by: brianrf | March 17, 2008 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Back in 2000, John W. McCain had an unintended moment of honesty and said:

'They are corrupting influences on religion and politics, and those who practice them in the name of religion or in the name of the Republican Party or in the name of America shame our faith, our party and our country.

Neither party should be defined by pandering to the outer reaches of American politics and the agents of intolerance, whether they be Louis Farrakhan or Al Sharpton on the left, or Pat Robertson or Jerry Falwell on the right.'

...and ever since, McCain has shamelessly tried to disassociate himself from his own words, while the media helpfully looks the other way. He "mended fences" with Jerry Falwell, abandoned his own religion, now pretending to be a Baptist, and he "proudly" accepted the endorsement of John Hagee; a man who not only called the Catholic Church "the great wh*re" who conspired with Hitler to exterminate Jews, but who believes Hurricane Katrina was a righteous punishment, sent to the people of New Orleans for their sins.

And there's another endorsement McCain received that has been flying under the radar. Last month, McCain:

...campaigned in Cincinnati, where he appeared with the Rev. Rod Parsley of World Harvest Church of Columbus. McCain called Parsley a "spiritual guide," while Parsley later labeled McCain a "strong, true, consistent conservative."

Who is Rod Parsley? An Ohio pastor whose $600 million ministry's finances is cloaked in secrecy, a man who sells ""covenant swords" and "prayer cloths" -- that he claims will bring...freedom from financial problems as well as any physical or emotional ailments," a man who calls himself a high priest who only has to blow in a whistle to have "every demon is coming off your shoulders, outta your mind, outta your finances," and who wants to "restore Godly presence in government and culture and...will tear down the church-state wall."

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 10:50 AM | Report abuse

newagent, when are we going to talk about the 'HATE' of McCain supporters, 'Rev.' Parseley and Hagee? When are we going to talk about their lunatic CULTS? These guys are far worse than Obama's preacher.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 10:47 AM | Report abuse

Dr. Subtle might be interested in this story since he seems so obsesseed with how Republicans vote in our primaries which I agree is dispicable and mischievious meddling:

"Obama is running radio ads in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia to urge students, independents and REPUBLICANS -- three key constituencies to keep the race close -- to register as Democrats before the deadline."

I guess as long as Republicans support his side that is just fine. his campaign doesn't seem bothered by their votes.

Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 10:45 AM | Report abuse

' aides and associates of Obama tell stories about a boss who can be aloof and ungracious. '

you mean, like 'uppity' leichtman? because that's what you are saying isn't it? just come out and say it...

"Where is the outrage?

Missiles that witnesses say came from an unmanned drone flattened a suspected militant safehouse Sunday in Pakistan's tribal area along the Afghan border. State television said the strike killed about 20 people.

Witnesses said a drone dropped seven missiles on the sprawling, mud-brick compound about three miles outside Wana, the main town in South Waziristan. Only U.S.-led coalition forces in Afghanistan are known to operate unmanned drones in the region, and they have launched attacks over the Pakistani border before.

Remember the week-long, non-stop hysteria when Sen. Obama said that he would strike high value al-Qaeda targets in Pakistan?

St. McCain sneered that it was "naive," George W. Bush ridiculed the idea of bombing our "ally," Willard called him "Dr. Strangelove," and the wingnut chorus enthusiastically piled on, characterizing Obama's position as advocating an "invasion" of Pakistan.

Well.

I look forward to McCain and the wingnuttery's stern denunciations of the Bush Administration for naively and recklessly invading our ally today.

I'm sure they're going to be coming fast and furious, as soon as this story gets out."

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 10:45 AM | Report abuse

criminy, you take a break without taking on Rev. wrights hate, and Obama's love of that hate.

tingles up your leg for Obama?

Posted by: newagent99 | March 17, 2008 10:43 AM | Report abuse

"Obama, writes the AP's Ron Fournier, is displaying a touch of arrogance as a campaigner. "Privately, aides and associates of Obama tell stories about a boss who can be aloof and ungracious. He holds firmly to views and doesn't like to be challenged, traits that President Bush packaged and sold under the 'resolute' brand in the 2004 election," Fournier writes.

"Voters won't cut Obama as much slack on the humility test because he's sold himself as something different."


An Obama supporter posted over the weekend in response to my assertion that Sen Obama will do everything within his means to stall or block a revote in Fla and Michigan that that was not true, well guess again:

Stall, stall stall and then say whoops there is not enough time:

"Things look stalled in Michigan: "State lawmakers looking at a Democratic presidential primary redo in Michigan appear to be locked in a standoff heading into a crucial week: Legislative leaders say the U.S. Sen. Barack Obama camp needs to agree to the repeat election before legislation is written, and Obama supporters say they must see the bill before signing off on the plan," Mark Hornbeck and Deb Price write for the Detroit News.



Posted by: leichtman | March 17, 2008 10:35 AM | Report abuse

rpy1, WI is not the prettiest, but they will be a tough out. Anybody who takes them for granted gets beat in the end.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | March 17, 2008 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Enjoy the break, CC -- and *stay away* from the computer! We all need to unplug from time to time.
-------------------------------------------
Mark, any thoughts about Wisconsin?

Posted by: rpy1 | March 17, 2008 10:28 AM | Report abuse

I have to agree with this. World markets are stunned, are roiled, are panicked by what's happening here, while americans are apparently too busy watching 'reality' shows to notice and the candidates are equally oblivious:

'I am appalled, though not surprised, at the complete silence by the candidates on the last few days' events on Wall Street and the world's stock, bond and currency markets. This has far more effect on all of our futures than racist comments by the oxygen deprived brains of some old political or spiritual leaders.'

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Chris, have a great break! Well-timed, too, with your Hoyas in the NCAA basketball tournament. Enjoy!

Posted by: ewb727 | March 17, 2008 9:50 AM | Report abuse

drindl, art-punk. They have a drummer, Obaro, a PhD neurology student at Bristol, of Nigerian ancestry, who could not make the trip, so he layed down the drum tracks on a cd.

See

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ex0fOOKndak

Posted by: mark_in_austin | March 17, 2008 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Fix, enjoy your time away from work.

Posted by: bsimon | March 17, 2008 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Mark, what kind of music do your daughter and son-in-law play?

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Will the results in Michigan change; Who do you believe will win the redo in Michigan?

http://www.youpolls.com/details.asp?pid=1885


.

Posted by: PollM | March 17, 2008 9:28 AM | Report abuse

do you think the NYTimes could bend over any further for McCain?

'BAGHDAD -- Senator John McCain arrived in Iraq on Sunday morning on a trip that was described as a visit by an official Congressional delegation, but that also served to showcase his foreign policy credentials as he campaigns for the White House.'

And just how high shall we jump, John? Pathetic. But Iraqis aren't fooled:

"If the Republicans win the election, then nothing will really change in Iraq, and we need a big change to kick the occupiers out of the country," said Abu Mohammed, a 30-year-old barbershop owner in Samarra, north of Baghdad. "I would like to show him the schools and hospitals and how the children and women suffer."

Another Samarra shop owner, 52-year-old Hamid Saleh, said he wanted the Republicans to lose the election. "All I want is someone who works to fix my country, and not destroy it," he said.'

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 9:24 AM | Report abuse

CC, Have a healthy vacation. Perhaps if you are gone for a week your posters who like to actually explore issues will return in force and the partisan cut-and-pasters exchanging their personal views about the perceived character or lack thereof of their chosen ones will leave, en masse.
--------------------
Bokonon and brad, my daughter and son-in-law played a one hour set
on the sidewalk in front of "Zen" on South Congress, facing into the seating area through the open overhead door, Fri. nt. It was fun to watch people walking back in forth in front of them keeping time, and gratifying to watch others enjoy their set. Sound set-up? Not so good. They fly back to UK this morning.
---------------------------
Novamatt, KU is terrific. Rockchalk!

AggieMike, if Sloan and Jones do not get into foul trouble and that huge freshman center pays attention, I see Sweet 16 for the Aggies.

Chris, I do not think Gtown has it.

Andy, are you in NC? I sort of remember you saying you were Wolfpack. If I am even close, where are your loyalties in March?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | March 17, 2008 9:23 AM | Report abuse

"In an interesting Page One piece, the LAT takes a look at the tactics that the Chinese government is taking to spin the Tibetan protests to its own people. They may not need much prodding since many Chinese don't have a positive view of Tibet anyway, but the government is employing sophisticated PR tactics and emphasizing the attacks of Tibetans against Han Chinese in order to stir an us-vs.-them mentality that seems to be working. "The government is showing more confidence and learning more about spin," said Michael Anti, a well-known Chinese blogger. "They've learned more PR tactics from Western people. They see the way the White House and the Pentagon do it."

Oh look, the Chinese communists are learning Republican propaganda... isn't that charming? Teaching the Chinese to hate the Tibetans. So much for democracy. What we import nowadays is hatred and racism.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 9:06 AM | Report abuse

Yes, CC. enjoy. And now the news...

'The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and USA Today all lead with, while the Wall Street Journal devotes much of its Page One to, the Federal Reserve announcing a series of moves to try to bring some stability to the increasingly shaky financial markets. Lest these be confused as just one more of the series of measures the Fed has taken in recent months, the papers make clear that this latest action is "dramatic" (WP), "extraordinary" (LAT), and "apparently unprecedented" (NYT). '

Sinking, sinking. And what's mcCain's fix? MORE OF THE SAME! But as he says, he doesn't know much about economics. Or much else, apparently, since his every policy mirrors bush's.

Posted by: drindl | March 17, 2008 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Turn the blackberry off for at least 3 days in a row dude...

Mrs Fix will give you big credit for it.

But remember, all credits are only valid for 24 hours from time of issue. So make the most of them (wink, wink) fast.

Posted by: Boutan | March 17, 2008 8:55 AM | Report abuse

Enjoy!!

Posted by: lylepink | March 17, 2008 8:53 AM | Report abuse

Have a well deserved and nice Vacation CC. We'll need you nice and rested for the stretch run.

Posted by: AndyR3 | March 17, 2008 8:48 AM | Report abuse

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