Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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April 19, 2010

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

* Progress over the skies of Europe: "Poland reopened four airports and the Netherlands reopened one shortly after European officials carved up the sky Monday, creating three zones to more quickly break the flight deadlock caused by volcanic ash flowing from Iceland over Europe."

* I do love green shoots: "The index of U.S. leading indicators rose in March by the most in 10 months, a sign the economy will keep growing into the second half of the year."

* Into the lion's den: "President Obama will take his case for tougher financial regulation to Wall Street's backyard this week, the White House announced Monday."

* Gates on Iran: "Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates acknowledged Sunday that in January he sent a memo to the White House outlining the 'next steps in our defense planning process' for Iran."

* Gun activists converge on the D.C. area.

* Rumors were true: "President Barack Obama has nominated Harvard medical professor Donald Berwick to oversee Medicare and Medicaid."

* Sigh: "Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-Conn.) and Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine.) on Monday issued subpoenas to the Obama administration regarding the shootings at Ft. Hood last year."

* Andrew Sabl ponders "the fundamental difference between the kind of responsible libertarians whom I happily have dinner with and the 'buy more guns, more bullets' contingent."

* Adam Serwer ponders the "flame war between Tom Goldstein and Glenn Greenwald over Solicitor General Elena Kagan's suitability for the Supreme Court."

* On a related note, Greenwald makes a very compelling case for Diane Wood to fill John Paul Stevens' vacancy on the high court.

* Greenwald also reports that the White House has sought out defenders for Elana Kagan. For the record, I haven't heard a word from my White House sources on this, but I have no idea if my experience is the norm. [Update: It was actually Sam Stein at the Huffington Post who reported this, not Glenn. My mistake.]

* White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs meets with angry reporters to tend to "frayed relations."

* A great political cartoon appropriately mocks the Senate Minority Leader, who has no qualms repeating a lie, even after it's exposed as a lie.

* Fact checking the Sunday shows.

* Financial aid season is not always a pleasant one.

* And in Georgia, former Gov. Roy Barnes (D), who seeking his old job back, mocked far-right Republicans who throw around rhetoric about secession from the U.S. "Do they not know that the Yankees have got the atomic bomb now?" Barnes joked.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

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

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Comments

Joe Lieberman is NOT a Democrat!

Posted by: Kenn on April 19, 2010 at 5:34 PM | PERMALINK

I love green shoots too...

This from Good Morning Silicon Valley

I can’t remember the last time there was enough encouraging economic news in the tech sector to warrant a roundup, but the latest earnings reports, hiring plans and other indicators seem to be signaling better days ahead.
On Tuesday, market bellwether Intel surprised the Street with earnings of more than $2.4 billion, its best quarterly profit in four years, and reported that corporate PC spending was on the rise. On Wednesday, research firms Gartner and IDC said worldwide PC demand in the first three months of the year was up 20 percent over the same quarter last year. On Thursday, Advanced Micro Devices said rising PC demand had helped put it back into the black for the quarter. Also Thursday, Google said strength in online advertising contributed to a 23 percent jump in revenue for the quarter and a 37 percent increase in profit year-over-year (results which met expectations but were still not enough to satisfy investors, who are sending the stock down today). Next week, we should get another batch of positive news with reports from Apple, Amazon and Microsoft, among others.
With the industry’s growing confidence has come a surge in hiring. Google said it had added almost 800 new employees in the first quarter. “We expect to continue hiring aggressively through the year,” CFO Patrick Pichette told analysts....

Posted by: koreyel on April 19, 2010 at 5:40 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, Steve -- you must have missed the memo -- Lieberman is most definitely NOT a Democrat.

Posted by: karen marie on April 19, 2010 at 5:43 PM | PERMALINK

Greenwald's case for Wood is that she's a good *compromise* candidate.

Why do we always lead with our compromises?

Posted by: gussie on April 19, 2010 at 5:44 PM | PERMALINK

Lieberman is most definitely NOT a Democrat.
=========================

But, but, but, but ... he's with us on everything except, well, except everything.

I keep wishing the Democratic Leadership had more actual Democrats and fewer of whatever Harry Reid is.

Posted by: Fleas correct the era on April 19, 2010 at 5:56 PM | PERMALINK

hey, Senate Democratic Caucus - heckuva job on that Homeland Security chairmanship!

and while Judge Wood would likely be better than Kagen (although not as young), I'll just keep saying it over and over: Pamela Karlan. Pamela Karlan. Pamela Karlan.

Posted by: zeitgeist on April 19, 2010 at 5:56 PM | PERMALINK

Gov. Barnes bon mot brings to mind a story (I've told it before)told on various Confederate Generals, but often Georgia's Gen. Robert Toombs, who is reported to have said "We'll whup those Yankees, even if we're fighting with corn stalks!"
After the Civil War, a veteran asked the General about his statement, saying "what happened?"
"Son, them damned Yankees would fight us with cornstalks.."

Heritage is probably ok if it's real history...

Posted by: MR Bill on April 19, 2010 at 5:59 PM | PERMALINK

crap, that's "Them Damned Yankees wouldN'T fight us with cornstalks.."

Carry on.

Posted by: MR Bill on April 19, 2010 at 6:02 PM | PERMALINK

Simon Johnson and James Kwak of baselinescenario.com were on Moyers program for the entire program on Friday. The full video is in two pasts on Moyers' website at PBS. Interesting, enraging, frustrating, but not devoid of hope. Johnson makes the point that it took Teddy Roosevelt quite a few years to bust the trusts, so we shouldn't expect instant results. But we need strong leadership from a few members of Congress. Who will step up?

Posted by: meander on April 19, 2010 at 6:02 PM | PERMALINK

"Do they not know that the Yankees have got the atomic bomb now?"

Atomic? I'd go the full Monty on those Neanderthalian fools and threaten the souped-up hydrogen model. Imagine telling your friendly neighborhood Klan sympathizer: "We will turn every last one of your white Southern brethren into radioactive black glass with a Strontium half-life of ten thousand years."

Posted by: S. Waybright on April 19, 2010 at 6:31 PM | PERMALINK

Open Thread comment:
Not much has been said here regarding the volcanic cloud in Europe. This is an example of what effect nature has on us, and over which our technology has little affect. We are hearing all about the delays and testing of aircraft to start flying again. But, what of the people whose lives are directly and seriously affected: growers & distributors of produce in Africa; grounded pilots & other airline personnel,whose pay may be diminished;tourism industry all over the world. I could go on, but leave it to you to imagine, based on your own lives, who is being directly and indirectly affected. Once again, we get to see the interconnectedness of all life on the planet. We hear how much money the airlines are losing every day, but what of the people who live on the edge who will have their meager incomes reduced to little or nothing. How are they to survive? Who will bail them out?

I'd like to post this for your consideration of the global context of this and other natural and human-made events. We cannot isolate ourselves, as much as some would lilke to. Even the remotest indigenous societies are affected by these events. I trust that by opening to the possibilities of global interdependence, we can feel some compassion for our fellows wherever they are and whoever they are.

I am committed to Oneness through Justice and Transformation
peace,
st john

Posted by: st john on April 19, 2010 at 7:09 PM | PERMALINK

If I were Robert Gibbs, I'd say "eat shit and swallow" to the whiney WH press corp. How about when you start reporting and doing investigative journalism again then we'd be more then happy to provide the press contingent more access to any tea parties actively taking place. Think Bush’s people ever apologized to the press? Gee, I wonder? He probably thanked them in person for selling his war, hook, line and sinker. What a story..

Posted by: Trollop on April 19, 2010 at 7:16 PM | PERMALINK

"Poland reopened four airports and the Netherlands reopened one shortly after European officials carved up the sky Monday,[...] -- Steve Benen

That's my Poland; always at a gallop, whether it's sensible or not. I just hope this rush doesn't mean we're gonna see more "Smolensk landings" (or takeoffs).

Posted by: exlibra on April 19, 2010 at 7:23 PM | PERMALINK

Actually, St. John [sic], I'd say the volcano is a pretty darned good excuse to avoid too much global inter-connectedness. Self-sufficiency in food and other local economic needs is a good thing. Over-reliance on tourism and other "outside" dollars is just asking to have your feet kicked out from under you.

Posted by: GP on April 19, 2010 at 7:45 PM | PERMALINK

S. Waybright @ 6:31, for what it's worth, I think the best argument against allowing a New Southern Secession (as some have heretofore, in this blog's comments) is that my Georgia (or Mississippi or South Carolina or Texas) should not have the bomb.
At least, anymore than they currently do.
I mean, Oak Ridge, Savannah River, Pantex..

Posted by: MR Bill on April 19, 2010 at 7:48 PM | PERMALINK

I see that exlibra posted steve benen's brief comment on the volcano, and I appreciate that this was posted. But, most of the commentary I see is how much it is costing the airlines and the disruption to passengers/travelers. I have a friend who is possibly "stranded" in the U.S. and whose visitor's Visa may expire before she can leave. I wonder what will happen at the airport when she tries to board, as an "illegal" alien? And, another friend has been unable to travel from the U.K. for similar reasons. Then, there are all those whose lives do not meet the threshhold for newsworthiness because they are not considered directly affected, but may be suffering even greater hardship from this natural event. I want to keep this in the forefront of peoples' consciousness.

All for now!

peace,
st john

Posted by: st john on April 19, 2010 at 7:50 PM | PERMALINK

>* Greenwald also reports that the White House has sought out defenders for Elana Kagan. For the record, I haven't heard a word from my White House sources on this, but I have no idea if my experience is the norm

I doubt they worried the Washington Monthly would stray from the Obama party line like those pesky progressive blogs do.

Posted by: Dale on April 19, 2010 at 8:15 PM | PERMALINK

Greenwald is just starbursting to the fantasy that anyone at the White House gives a shit what he says.

Posted by: sanelib on April 19, 2010 at 8:20 PM | PERMALINK

"Ed Chen, a White House correspondent for Bloomberg News who is president of the White House Correspondents’ Association, said he asked for the meeting “to clear the air because in my 10-plus years at the White House, rarely have I sensed such a level of anger, which is wide and deep, among members over White House practices and attitude toward the press.”"

Like Trollop said, the WH Press corps were too busy kissing Bush's ass to object then.

Posted by: Dale on April 19, 2010 at 8:22 PM | PERMALINK

Thanks for the link to the cartoon. I almost chucked dinner.
If we didn't have that dickhead we would have to invent one just for the laughs.
Go GNOP!

Posted by: dilbert dogbert on April 19, 2010 at 9:56 PM | PERMALINK

Glenn Greenwald staking out some position that is suddenly the most important position ever taken by anyone and which no one must dare dispute lest they incur the wearying Wrath Of Greenwald, which he will bear from blog to blog, like the world's most tedious swashbuckler? When was the last time that happened, Thursday?

Posted by: FlipYrWhig on April 19, 2010 at 10:06 PM | PERMALINK

Like Dale and Trollop, I too was struck by the inanity of the quote by Ed Chen:

Ed Chen, a White House correspondent for Bloomberg News who is president of the White House Correspondents’ Association, said he asked for the meeting “to clear the air because in my 10-plus years at the White House, rarely have I sensed such a level of anger, which is wide and deep, among members over White House practices and attitude toward the press.”

And all this is over the press missing Obama attending his daughter's soccer game. In contrast, the press was peed on for years by the Bushies, lied to, given run-arounds, passed over in favor of Fox News, given second-class citizenship below male prostitute "reporter" Jeff Guckert Gannon, talked down to, insulted (Cheney: "major asshole" [about an NYT reporter]; Bush: "Yeah"), subjected to countless Friday evening releases of important bad news, forced to reveal sources, were subjected to fake press conferences with staffers playing the audience, had to compete with colleagues who were paid to shill for the White House, and were hugely restricted in their war coverage, plus they had to listen to Bush give his stupid, stupid third-grade-level explanations of things and then had to repeat them to the public as if they actually made sense. And now they are pissed over missing a soccer game????? What the heck are they thinking?

Posted by: N.Wells on April 19, 2010 at 10:27 PM | PERMALINK

And now they are pissed over missing a soccer game????? What the heck are they thinking?
Posted by: N.Wells on April 19, 2010 at 10:27 PM

They're thinking that "human interest stories" (the President is a caring, supportive father, even though cursed with two female offspring) are: 1) more interesting to Joe Schmoe than the ins and outs of the financial reform and, 2) are easier to report on, since they don't require understanding of those same ins and outs. Obama tricked them out of an easy assignment. Waaaaah! Bad, bad, Obama!

Posted by: exlibra on April 19, 2010 at 11:42 PM | PERMALINK

Does every self-appointed pundit well and unknown have to bore us with their Supreme Court picks? This WH seems to know what it is doing. Surely they have a list that is vetted and ready to go. A little humility from the chattering and writing class would be welcome.

Posted by: hornblower on April 19, 2010 at 11:59 PM | PERMALINK

Gee, what a surprise: the Democrats and Obama allow Joe Lieberman to retain his chairmanship, and Holy Joe stabs them all in the back in return. Who could have predicted that?

Posted by: bluestatedon on April 20, 2010 at 3:40 AM | PERMALINK

What N. Wells said.

The WH Press Corps can collectively go fuck themselves.

Posted by: bluestatedon on April 20, 2010 at 3:41 AM | PERMALINK

could the Lieberman & Collins subpoena deal be a trade off/shield for Collins breaking the financial reform filibuster

Posted by: stevie on April 20, 2010 at 4:57 AM | PERMALINK

Gun activists converge on the D.C. area.

Gun enthusiasts(read nuts) assemble at national park where they could never carry a gun and now can, suggesting their right to bear arms are being threatened? Maybe they think the 2nd amendment allows them to bear nuclear "arms" and the new treaty threatens that right.

Posted by: flyonthewall on April 20, 2010 at 6:42 AM | PERMALINK

But, I thought the South had the Q Bomb.

Posted by: berttheclock on April 20, 2010 at 8:11 AM | PERMALINK

Great to see and hear Vice President Biden speaking to the AFL-CIO Convention, yesterday. If Cheney had ever shown up there, it would have been strictly a recruiting mission to see how many would accept non-union, but highly paid, jobs for KBR in Iran, after our invasion.

Posted by: berttheclock on April 20, 2010 at 8:24 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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