Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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February 23, 2010

TUESDAY'S MINI-REPORT.... Today's edition of quick hits:

* Rough day for Toyota on Capitol Hill: "The president of Toyota's U.S. operations acknowledged to skeptical lawmakers on Tuesday that the company's recalls of millions of its cars may "not totally" solve the problem of sudden and dangerous acceleration."

* White House officially calls for health insurers to lose their anti-trust exemption.

* Dick Cheney apparently suffered his fifth heart attack yesterday, but is expected to be discharged from the hospital within a couple of days.

* Good to see House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) condemn Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) for his tacit support for last week's suicide bomber in Austin.

* In light of Sen. John McCain's (R-Ariz.) bizarre remarks about having been misled about TARP policy in 2008, Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) called the conservative senator's comments "pathetically untrue" and "cowardly." Harsh, to be sure, but true.

* California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) is unimpressed with his party's talking points on health care policy.

* This may not turn out well: "GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham confirmed Monday he is working with White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel to break the logjam on closing the military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and bringing the prisoners to trial."

* For crying out loud: "A top Tea Party leader derided Barack Obama as 'our half white, racist president' in an email to colleagues."

* The Navy is prepared to lift its ban on female submarine crew members

* It may seem odd to incorporate YouTube in a college admissions process, but here we are.

* And on a personal note, today is, for lack of a better word, my "Blogoversary" -- I started blogging exactly seven years ago today. Given the relative youth of the medium, I guess this means I've been at it for quite a long while. Whether you've been reading for seven days or seven years, my most sincere thanks for the support.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

Steve Benen 5:30 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (75)

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Comments

Hey, I get to be the first to say CONGRATULATIONS Steve! Been following you since I had to know "orange". . .

Posted by: Michigoose on February 23, 2010 at 5:31 PM | PERMALINK

Congratulations!!!! Love reading your blog!!

Posted by: Suzanne H on February 23, 2010 at 5:34 PM | PERMALINK

Congrats, to the hardest working man in the 'tubes.

Posted by: beep52 on February 23, 2010 at 5:36 PM | PERMALINK

HAPPY BLOGDAY, old man!
Without you I never woulda learnt to spell orenge...er...aronge...um...well, y'know!

Posted by: iucaffiend on February 23, 2010 at 5:39 PM | PERMALINK

Congrats, Steve,
Your depth, reach, and writing talent are second to no other journalist today.

And God damn Dick Cheney's shit-filled soul to hell.

Posted by: neill on February 23, 2010 at 5:41 PM | PERMALINK

Thanks Steve for a blog that makes me think, research, and occasionally laugh (in a good way!). And thanks to the many commenters who also make me think, research, and laugh - kudos!

Posted by: whichwitch on February 23, 2010 at 5:42 PM | PERMALINK

Congrats, Steve. Your blog is the first place I go each day to get a read on the nation's political pulse and you never fail to deliver.

Keep up the great work!!

Posted by: bdop4 on February 23, 2010 at 5:43 PM | PERMALINK

Happy Blogoversary Steve!!

I had almost forgotten how to spell orange.

Posted by: MW on February 23, 2010 at 5:43 PM | PERMALINK

Steve, thanks for being consistently excellent. Your blog really got me through some of the dark days of the Bush administration.

Posted by: Fred on February 23, 2010 at 5:46 PM | PERMALINK

Dick Cheney apparently suffered his fifth heart attack yesterday, but is expected to be discharged from the hospital within a couple of days....

and then he will be renditioned to The Hague to stand trial for a lengthy list of War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity and for Treason against his country.

there, fixed that for you.

Posted by: he is a fat gout ridden war criminal on February 23, 2010 at 5:47 PM | PERMALINK

I once (20+ years ago) made a vague threat to the IRS over the phone and had armed Treasury agents appear at my home the next day. I didn't make my statements in public, on the record. Funny how that works.

Posted by: st john on February 23, 2010 at 5:52 PM | PERMALINK

Congrats, Steve. Although your faux naivete is sometimes wearisome, you are definitely the go-to blog.

Posted by: Dems lose huge in 2010 on February 23, 2010 at 5:52 PM | PERMALINK

Congratulations on your 'versary. You are the first blog I turn to every day because of your intelligent, thoughtful, and timely reports and musings. Hope you keep it up.

Posted by: CDW on February 23, 2010 at 5:52 PM | PERMALINK

Dick Cheney apparently suffered his fifth heart attack yesterday, but is expected to be discharged from the hospital within a couple of days.

Dick Cheney has a heart?

Happy anniversary Steve. You were a light during the dark times.

Posted by: Dale on February 23, 2010 at 5:53 PM | PERMALINK

I join in the congratulations. You are on my must read every day list.

Posted by: Scott F. on February 23, 2010 at 5:53 PM | PERMALINK

Rahm is bipartisan the way Benedict Arnold was.

Posted by: Dale on February 23, 2010 at 5:57 PM | PERMALINK

7 years? time sure flies when you start getting old, I guess. I had no idea it had been that long.

Posted by: merl on February 23, 2010 at 5:58 PM | PERMALINK

You and the blogosphere grew up together. Happy B-day to you both!

Posted by: buddy66 on February 23, 2010 at 5:59 PM | PERMALINK

that's 49 in blog-years, right?

congrats - and many, hopefully happy, returns!
if you keep posting, I'll keep reading.

Posted by: zeitgeist on February 23, 2010 at 6:10 PM | PERMALINK

5 heart attacks - and still that fucker refuses to shuffle off to his long-overdue dirt nap.

The only justification I can deduce is that Hell simply doesn't have any room at the moment.

Posted by: coralsea on February 23, 2010 at 6:13 PM | PERMALINK

congrats, steve...this blog is my first stop every day....

as for this, "A top Tea Party leader derided Barack Obama as 'our half white, racist president' in an email to colleagues," it could be read that obama's white half is racist....not, i suspect, what he meant...wonder if he thinks obama hates himself half the time...

Posted by: dj spellchecka on February 23, 2010 at 6:17 PM | PERMALINK

Congrats on the Blogoversary, Steve. You run a great ship!

Posted by: sue on February 23, 2010 at 6:23 PM | PERMALINK

Beat me to it, Coralsea. Heaven doesn't want him and Hell won't have him. Well, fine with me, I want him to live to stand trial.

Posted by: T-Rex on February 23, 2010 at 6:24 PM | PERMALINK

happy b'day steve!
it's only you & rachel holding these morons to the fire; keep up the great work.

Posted by: vwmeggs on February 23, 2010 at 6:27 PM | PERMALINK

Happy Blogday, Steve. The answer was orange for many a great commenters. You still have the best political stuff on the inter-tubes.

And Cheney? He can't go until he appears before the Hague (along with Rumsfeld, Bush the Lesser)

Posted by: BuzzMon on February 23, 2010 at 6:29 PM | PERMALINK

Your Political Animal is not just a just read, it's my first read.

Posted by: Ravi J on February 23, 2010 at 6:44 PM | PERMALINK

Your Political Animal is not just a must read, it's my first read

Posted by: Ravi J on February 23, 2010 at 6:45 PM | PERMALINK

Rock On Mr. Steve !

....and Thanks

Posted by: Phil in Denver on February 23, 2010 at 6:47 PM | PERMALINK

Thanks Steve Benen, I didn't know you've been doing this for 7 years! Better late than never reading the Political Animal.

We love your blog on DU.. The facts presented with your own inimitable humor. :)

Posted by: Cha on February 23, 2010 at 6:47 PM | PERMALINK

What about the fact that Canada's cancer mortality rate went up 16% the very first year they socialized their health care system. Are all of those extra cancer deaths just acceptable math to the Dems supporting this bill? What makes their lives any less valid? Who the hell made the Dems god who can decide issues of life or death like this?

That is why there are more than a few people uneasy with the Dems whole concept. From the stripping Medicare to throw Grandmother under the bus to help pay for it to the concept of the general public already being taxed to the limit and not wanting their taxes going up even higher to pay for it. Than there are the government mandates and backroom deals with big unions and big pharma that have turned so many people off. Many people in countries with government run health care come to the USA and pay cash for services due to the fact their government run health care does not provide the services they need and that the US has the best available. This will not be the case if we price fix Medicine like the Dems want to do. That is why the majority of people are so against the Dems Health care bill.


Posted by: Jerry on February 23, 2010 at 6:51 PM | PERMALINK

Many happy returns, Steve. As someone who'd been raised on oranges, I wouldn't be putting up with this lemon of the site if it weren't for you (and your commenters; you seem to attract the better class of them)

Posted by: exlibra on February 23, 2010 at 6:52 PM | PERMALINK

Happy anniversary, Steve! I confess I didn't read you till you took this place over, but I wish I had.

And Dick Cheney is obviously an argument against national healthcare. Sheesh, he's got the best the gubmint can do and he still keeps having heart attacks. No way the private sector lets him have five.

Posted by: Northzax on February 23, 2010 at 6:55 PM | PERMALINK

Happy Blogoversary Steve!!! Thanks to you, we're among the best informed out there.

I think I speak for the large majority when I say that as long as you continue to blog, then we'll continue to read.

Posted by: Chris on February 23, 2010 at 7:00 PM | PERMALINK

Congrats and you are my first read every morning.

To Jerry, I think you are wrong on this one, I lived most of my life in a country with National Health Care, most everyone in that country was full of pity for Americans and our health care. Are you happy to see people standing in line and waiting all night for a free clinic. Are you happy to be paying double what we pay overseas. Are you happy that the US is ranked 37th in the world for health care, and that the life expectancy here is lower than most other countries.

Posted by: js on February 23, 2010 at 7:03 PM | PERMALINK

Steve, I think what Jerry was trying to say, but just couldn't get all sentimental, was "happy blogoversary!"

Posted by: zeitgeist on February 23, 2010 at 7:05 PM | PERMALINK

Congrats!

Posted by: kc on February 23, 2010 at 7:07 PM | PERMALINK

'jerry' does not exist. no one could be that stupid. not even a republican. well maybe a republican.

congrats steve and keep up the good work.

Posted by: mudwall jackson on February 23, 2010 at 7:10 PM | PERMALINK

Thank you Steve, you are the BEST!

Posted by: Gail Overton on February 23, 2010 at 7:20 PM | PERMALINK

Thanks and congratulations, Steve.

You become more essential by the day.

Posted by: hoi polloi on February 23, 2010 at 7:28 PM | PERMALINK

Congratulations, Steve! Thanks for being here. Orange!

Posted by: Little Dick on February 23, 2010 at 7:29 PM | PERMALINK

@Jerry

You're attacking Democrats for seeking to cut Medicare in order to fund a government takeover of health care. Really? Cutting Medicare? To socialize medicine? Really?

Posted by: hoi polloi on February 23, 2010 at 7:32 PM | PERMALINK

seven yesrs for me. Thanks, and congrats.

Posted by: dwight meredith on February 23, 2010 at 7:55 PM | PERMALINK

Congrats, Steve. My first stop for serious news about Washington.

Posted by: Midland on February 23, 2010 at 7:56 PM | PERMALINK

Seven years for me. Thanks, and congrats.

Posted by: dwight meredith on February 23, 2010 at 7:57 PM | PERMALINK

Congratulations, Steve. As many of the other commentators have said...you are the best! I don't comment very often since most of your commentators write much better than I...and are much smarter.

Posted by: Joan on February 23, 2010 at 8:02 PM | PERMALINK

I guess back when you started the top blog was some woman trying to cook all of Julia Child's recipes in a year. They made a movie out of her life. Who is going to play you? Brad Pitt? Matt Damon? What about Meryl Streep to play Shortstop?Rachel can play herself.

Posted by: Ron Byers on February 23, 2010 at 8:18 PM | PERMALINK

happy blogiversary, steve!

Posted by: skippy on February 23, 2010 at 8:25 PM | PERMALINK

Thanks for all the fun, Steve. And a big shout-out to Mrs. Carpetbagger, too. Don't think we've forgotten all the times she came to our rescue back in the day on the old site. We won't! :)

Posted by: Curmudgeon on February 23, 2010 at 8:34 PM | PERMALINK

I've been following you for years Steve-- at least since 2004. Congrats. Not only do I closely align to your political views, I share your interest in certain geeky distractions. Of all the political bloggers I've followed, I think you remain the one I'd most enjoy having a beer with.

Posted by: JWK on February 23, 2010 at 8:41 PM | PERMALINK

Happy Anniversary! I've been reading for approximately two years, maybe three, since I had started reading the old Carpetbagger Report shortly before you took over Political Animal. You ALWAYS told it like it is, and have kept on doing so.
Keep up the GREAT work!

Posted by: knightphoenix2 on February 23, 2010 at 9:02 PM | PERMALINK

If McCain loses I bet he still appears regularly on MTP

You in Steve? A sawbuck or a fin?
Whether yes or no, one thing I can totally rely on...
You'll be keeping track of Jukebox John's appearances and every song he sings in your little black book.

Tenacity becomes you Mr. Benen.


Posted by: koreyel on February 23, 2010 at 9:08 PM | PERMALINK

Congrats! I haven't been here for the whole 7 years but I got sick of typing "orange"s real fast. The down side of this site is I can't just check it once a day because there is so much to keep up with. Someday you'll have to explain how you do this magic. And thanks to Mrs SB as well.

Posted by: Kevin on February 23, 2010 at 9:16 PM | PERMALINK

I was there for orange. I was there for when you had to do addition. I was there when you didn't have to do nothing.

Posted by: Dale on February 23, 2010 at 9:43 PM | PERMALINK

Congratulations! I've been visiting your blog several times a day for a couple of years. It's a must-read for me in trying to navigate the nonsense coming out of Washington, DC.

Posted by: pegoh on February 23, 2010 at 9:48 PM | PERMALINK

Happy blogoversary, Steve!

Glad you're here.

Posted by: JPS on February 23, 2010 at 9:51 PM | PERMALINK

Congratulations! Your experience shows: nobody has a more informative, smart, and crisply written politics blog. It's a godsend in this age of hype, chatter, and misinformation. In my darker moments, I've wondered if Jefferson was right that truth would triumph over lies, but your work gives me hope. Hats off!

Posted by: Robert on February 23, 2010 at 9:57 PM | PERMALINK

Happy 7th Steve! I've been reading for about four years now; you're a fantastic writer. Thanks for providing a clear voice of sanity when it comes to the goings-on in the nation's increasingly bizarre Versailles on the Potomac.

Posted by: electrolite on February 23, 2010 at 9:59 PM | PERMALINK

The "problem", has nothing to do with Toyota, but, everything to do with the lack of congressional oversight, a necessary and vital part of any successful capitalist system.

Posted by: intelVet on February 23, 2010 at 10:02 PM | PERMALINK

A sincere tip of the hat to a writer with panache and probity.

Posted by: Richard Townsend on February 23, 2010 at 10:25 PM | PERMALINK

Congrats, Steve. A shout out to Kevin Drum who wisely linked me to your site once upon a time. And Andrew Sullivan who linked me to Kevin before that.

Posted by: Chopin on February 23, 2010 at 10:29 PM | PERMALINK

Wow, seven years! Was this blog formed on U.S. soil? I heard it was hosted in Indonesia for the first year. Why have you never released these records? What are you afraid of Steve? Just release the records and end the controversy. Why are you feeding the rumors with your silence? I want to believe you but you're clearly hiding something.

I will wish you a Happy Blogday when you submit a long-form domain name registration certificate.

Posted by: sloan on February 23, 2010 at 10:34 PM | PERMALINK

Just a side note but what is an ad for Ann Coulter's columns doing on this site? I know the site has to pay the bills but....

Posted by: MattL on February 23, 2010 at 10:45 PM | PERMALINK

"In light of Sen. John McCain's (R-Ariz.) bizarre remarks about having been misled about TARP policy in 2008...." I think McCain's remarks prove once again what I've always suspected: McCain just didn't understand the financial crisis because he's not very bright. "Mislead" simply means too stupid to understand.

Posted by: E L on February 23, 2010 at 11:29 PM | PERMALINK

Congrats Steve, I really enjoy your writing. Thanks for your good work!

Posted by: PeninsulaMatt on February 23, 2010 at 11:52 PM | PERMALINK

Thanks for all your hard work, Steve.I read your blog daily and often and have been for as long as you've been writing. It's especially weird to think how small and insular the political blogosphere was 7 years ago.

The answer is...not pineapple!

Posted by: zoe kentucky in pittsburgh on February 23, 2010 at 11:53 PM | PERMALINK

Happy blogoversary, Steve! You've been consistently great the entire time I've been reading and I've read everything you've posted since the first time you contributed to C&L. Keep up the great work.

Posted by: Eric Faulkner on February 24, 2010 at 12:31 AM | PERMALINK

Happy Blogoversary, Steve...

Yours is the only political blog I follow, and I love it dearly. Keep up the fabulous work.

Posted by: Limbaughs Diabetes on February 24, 2010 at 1:41 AM | PERMALINK

Thank you, Steve, for all the wonderful work. Politcal Animal is the first tab that opens on my browser.

Posted by: inkadu on February 24, 2010 at 3:15 AM | PERMALINK

"Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) called the conservative senator's comments "pathetically untrue" and "cowardly." Harsh, to be sure, but true."

Interesting that a House member is free to speak the truth, but a fellow Senator could not.

Posted by: bob h on February 24, 2010 at 6:35 AM | PERMALINK

Interesting that a House member is free to speak the truth, but a fellow Senator could not.

The senate is a private club for aristocrats of the highest prestige and bloodline. The dukes and barons of the realm are not allowed to criticize each other where the peasants can hear them.

Unless, of course, they are denouncing Democrats as traitors, liars, weaklings, and phonies. That is allowed and expected.

Posted by: Midland on February 24, 2010 at 7:16 AM | PERMALINK

You continue to be the best blogger on the planet. Thanks for your great insight!!

Posted by: ecthompson, md on February 24, 2010 at 7:17 AM | PERMALINK

Congratulations, Steve! I've been following along for 5 years, from the orange days. It's been a great ride, keep up the good work!

Posted by: KevinMc on February 24, 2010 at 8:54 AM | PERMALINK

Just a note to add congratulations to Steve for his committed service to the truth. On a related side note, Steve took the time to straighten out a situation that had blocked me from commenting on these threads. He didn't have to do it, but he made sure, via two follow up emails, to let me know that I had been "banned" by mistake. A man who has that kind of integrity and follow-through earns my deepest respect. Thanks, Steve.

Posted by: Chris C on February 24, 2010 at 9:46 AM | PERMALINK

I'd like to add my congratulations too Steve.

Posted by: Dr. Morpheus on February 24, 2010 at 11:53 AM | PERMALINK

Thanks and congratulations, Steve. Your stuff is the best - I feel like I don't have to read any other blog. You are definitely worthy of the association with Washington Monthly.

Keep shining that light on Republican lies and hypocrisy. Demint and Graham: you can lie and distort, but you can't hide it from Steven Benen.
Also, we need help in supporting Rep John Spratt in 2010 - his opponent is a libertarian type who wouldn't recognize a good government policy if it bit him in the ass.

Posted by: MuddyLee on February 24, 2010 at 5:27 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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