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November 16, 2011 5:30 PM Wednesday’s Mini-Report

By Steve Benen

Today’s edition of quick hits:

* Good: “U.S. industrial output rose more than expected in October as factory and mining production expanded strongly, suggesting the economy was gaining steam.”

* Helping drive the Eurozone crisis: “Borrowing costs for European governments jumped across the board Tuesday, and new data confirmed that the region’s economy is slowing, evidence on two key fronts that leaders of the euro area have yet to contain its stubborn financial crisis.”

* Isolating Assad: “Syria’s president faced a growing challenge to his iron rule from home and abroad Wednesday, with renegade troops launching their most daring attack yet on the military and world leaders looking at possibilities for a regime without Bashar Assad.”

* White House shooting: “Federal law enforcement authorities on Wednesday arrested a 21-year-old Idaho man suspected of shooting with a semiautomatic rifle at the White House on Friday night, as the Secret Service reported finding that at least one bullet had indeed struck the presidential residence.”

* China won’t like this: “President Obama and Prime Minister Julia Gillard of Australia announced plans on Wednesday for a sustained new American military presence in Australia, a deployment of 2,500 troops aimed at signaling that the United States intends to counterbalance a rising China.”

* The relentless attacks from the right, coupled with fights over process, have taken their toll on public perceptions about the Occupy Wall Street movement.

* Occupy Boston gets a court win: “Members of the Occupy Boston movement have been granted a temporary restraining order against removal by the City of Boston from Dewey Square Park.”

* Remember Pentagon whistleblower Franz Gayl? Good news: “A Marine Corps science adviser who blamed military brass for failing to field life-saving vehicles faster to troops in Iraq has had his security clearance reinstated, allowing him to return to his post at the Pentagon.”

* New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) has very odd priorities.

* U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan has become the first sitting cabinet secretary to publicly endorse marriage equality.

* Andy Sabl has a good look at the Commerce Clause and the cracks in the right’s ideology.

* Occupy and student loans: “A more structural approach to the problem, however, would be to dramatically limit the amount of loans students take out to go to college.”

* Given the number of homes Fox Business reaches, it’s amazing to see just how few people watch Eric Bolling.

* And in trying to make a foolish argument about Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan, Fox News pointed to “Article 28 of the Constitution” for support. The U.S. Constitution does not have an article 28.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

Steve Benen is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly, joining the publication in August, 2008 as chief blogger for the Washington Monthly blog, Political Animal.

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  • Texas Aggie on November 16, 2011 5:37 PM:

    Questions: Was this gun nut from Idaho in any way associated with either OWS or the TP?

    In the European crisis, how much did toxic derivatives have to do with it? I gather Greece bought a bunch of them. How about other institutions and countries?

  • T2 on November 16, 2011 6:17 PM:

    I don't know about relentless attacks from the right, but once the protesters and cops started fighting, public opinion was bound to turn. Now they got homeless advocates as " spokesmen" and that won't help.
    I think they did What they wanted with the 99/1 thing.....might be time to declare Victory and get some organization.

  • sick -n-effin-tired on November 16, 2011 6:20 PM:

    The relentless attacks from the right, coupled with fights over process, have taken their toll on public perceptions about the Occupy Wall Street movement.
    Ya think ?
    Everywhere and I mean everywhere from Faux Nooze to CNBC
    Rich people and their corporate stooges pushing the class warfare meme.
    Those poor downtrodden rich people being picked on like ..like ..they are some kind of minority.
    The teevee financial station stations should just cut to the chase and put Maria Barteloma and her blond bimbo nooze reader associates in bikinis .
    Ain't no ugly female financial commentators

  • MsJoanne on November 16, 2011 7:20 PM:

    I'm interested in seeing how Italy plays out. They replaced their entire government with ex-bankers and business people. No politicians at all. This should be a fascinating study.

  • TCinLA on November 16, 2011 7:22 PM:

    “Federal law enforcement authorities on Wednesday arrested a 21-year-old Idaho man suspected of shooting with a semiautomatic rifle at the White House on Friday night, as the Secret Service reported finding that at least one bullet had indeed struck the presidential residence.”

    From Idaho eh? He's either a Mormon or a Nazi. If anyone knows how to tell the difference, please let us know.

  • AK Liberal on November 16, 2011 9:14 PM:

    @BigotedinLA: try to get over the hate. It's not good for you .

  • exlibra on November 16, 2011 9:48 PM:

    From the bits and pieces I've heard so far (the Secret Service is keeping most of the info close to its chest, as usual; that's why they're called "secret"), the punk is just a garden variety mentally disturbed nut, such as could grow -- untended, due to our Exceptional!™ mental healthcare (or lack thereof) -- anywhere in the country.

    Hatriots on both sides of the political spectrum will have something to drool over, in this case. On the one hand, he's from I-da-ho, giving TCinLA a geographical bone to gnaw on, yet again. OTOH, his name is Latino in origin; expect a whole cave-full of bat-shit crazy Repub vampires to make a meal out of *that*, too.

    AK Liberal, @9:14PM. When your name is Cleaver (TC stands for Tom Cleaver), you're not likely to "do" nuance...

  • exlibra on November 16, 2011 9:59 PM:

    All in all, I think the question ought to be *why is it* that felons (and mentally impaired) can get their guns with nary an obstacle but, when it comes to voting, it's a "no, nay, never"; not where they're coming from or what their "movement leaning" (TP or OWS) is. Call me a dumb Polack, but I'd like to see some consistency about the application of the rights (and "rights").
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/14/us/felons-finding-it-easy-to-regain-gun-rights.html?scp=2&sq=Michael%20Luo&st=cse

  • West of the Cascades on November 16, 2011 10:46 PM:

    re: Faux News and the Constitution ... they suck mightily, but it's also pretty clear what they're really referring to is a statute -- specifically 28 United States Code section 144 (there's the references to "28" and "144" cited in the linked article) -- a section captioned "Bias or prejudice of judges," which of course is what they were trying to reference with respect to Justice Kagan.

    Seriously, folks: they didn't fact-check, but it's pretty obvious (to anyone with even a smattering of legal knowledge and ability to use teh Google) that they were trying to refer to something substantive and got their wires crossed.

    Our side mocking this is like the blowhards on the right mocking our President for mentioning there were "57 states" a few years ago -- when it was very obvious he was referring to the 57 primary campaigns, which included the various US territories, DC and Puerto Rico.

    We look like assholes when we do the same thing that right-wing blowhards do.

  • Trollop on November 17, 2011 12:39 AM:

    Great, just what we needed. When do we deploy troops to counterbalance humanity with humans? There is no reason in the 21st century, too bad! We're fucked..

  • Danp on November 17, 2011 6:26 AM:

    We look like assholes when we do the same thing that right-wing blowhards do.

    False equivalence. Did you read the article? Or the Article 28/144/455? There is absolutely no reason for Kagan to recuse herself here. She did not serve in private practice concerning the matter. And she did not discuss the particular case while she was in public office (it hadn't come up yet.)Her quote, "Simply amazing" is hardly indicative of her opinion of the mandate.

    Furthermore, it is not like Obama's "57 states" in that this is not a spur of the moment gaffe. It is a prepared article from an organization that considers itself to be journalistic. If Fox actually directed their readers/Viewers to Article 28, they might find this:

    b) He shall also disqualify himself in the following circumstances
    4)He knows that he, individually or as a fiduciary, or his spouse or minor child residing in his household, has a financial interest in the subject matter in controversy or in a party to the proceeding, or any other interest that could be substantially affected by the outcome of the proceeding

    Based on that, Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia should have recused themselves multiple times, but they don't consider this law to apply to the Supreme Court.

  • lloydCarroll on November 17, 2011 7:57 AM:

    Lauren Pierce, president of the UT College Republicans and secretary of the statewide Texas College Republicans, is facing the consequences of a tweet she posted voicing her opinion about President Barack Obama and referencing the gunfire directed at the White House last Friday.

    http://www.dailytexanonline.com/news/2011/11/16/college-republicans-president-faces-fallout-tweet

    stay classy texas. not.

  • Anonymous on November 17, 2011 12:18 PM:

    * China won’t like this: “President Obama and Prime Minister Julia Gillard of Australia announced plans on Wednesday for a sustained new American military presence in Australia, a deployment of 2,500 troops aimed at signaling that the United States intends to counterbalance a rising China.”

    I don't like it either.
    Imperialism under any flag is criminal.

  • cwolf on November 17, 2011 12:27 PM:

    @ Anonymous on November 17, 2011 12:18 PM:
    ...actually, I also don't like Anonymous comments.
    However. that comment is mine & I accidentally forgot to own it.

    Moving on:
    * And in trying to make a foolish argument about Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan, Fox News pointed to �Article 28 of the Constitution� for support. The U.S. Constitution does not have an article 28.

    There may not really be a 28th article in the USC, but from now on if you poll Fox viewers on the matter, at least a majority will insist there is.

  • Anonymous on November 17, 2011 12:35 PM:

    And finally,

    * Good: "U.S. industrial output rose more than expected in October as factory and mining production expanded strongly, suggesting the economy was gaining steam."

    The way it is done in the US & most other countries, there is nothing Good about mining if you work or live in, near or down river from one.

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