Yeah, that’s gonna work…

From the WSJ:

Montana Rep. Denny Rehberg was no fan of the $58 billion federal rescue of General Motors Co., saying he worried taxpayer money would be wasted and the restructuring process would be vulnerable to “political pressure.” Now the lawmaker says it’s his “patriotic duty” to wade into GM’s affairs.

Federal support for companies such as GM, Chrysler Group LLC and Bank of America Corp. has come with baggage: Companies in hock to Washington now have the equivalent of 535 new board members — 100 U.S. senators and 435 House members.

Since the financial crisis broke, Congress has been acting like the board of USA Inc., invoking the infusion of taxpayer money to get banks to modify loans to constituents and to give more help to those in danger of foreclosure. Members have berated CEOs for their business practices and pushed for caps on executive pay. They have also pushed GM and Chrysler to reverse core decisions designed to cut costs, such as closing facilities and shuttering dealerships.

In addition to the dealership issue, lawmakers have jumped into a union fight that pits GM and Chrysler against two trucking companies that haul new cars around the country. The auto makers want to give some of the work to cheaper nonunion contractors. But that raised the ire of lawmakers who support the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

We are in the best of hands…

Yoja of the week

Well, for those of us who have the good fortune to be employed, it is TGIF.  And as you know, in addition to looking forward to a weekend of R&R, it is time for the next installment of Yoja of the Week.


One thing I really like about autumn in Korea (in addition to the fall foliage and moderate weather) is boots.  Surely it is not just me, but there is just something about a woman in boots.

I found the photo at a blog called The Real South Korea.  The post notes that Korean women might be the world’s sexiest dressers.  I’ve made that argument myself.  They just have a certain style and grace about them somehow.  It’s like they can’t help it.

Speaking as an old fat guy, about all I can do is shake my head in admiration and say “damn”.

What could go wrong?


UPDATE:  See that stack of paper in the photo above.  That’s 1990 pages constituting the 900 billion dollar House health care bill.  Or to put it another way…$2.24 million per word.  Yikes!
So, Nancy Pelosi and the House Democrats passed historic health care legislation today.  Over 1900 pages of it.  At a cost of “only” 900 billion dollars.  Excluding increased expenses for the Medicare/Medicare programs.  And assuming “fraud and waste” are eliminated.  And we know the government is real good at that.  No worries though, Ms. Nancy assures us that this plan will save everyone money.  Except for those it doesn’t I suppose.  Like taxpayers.

But at least we have some recent models out there that demonstrate big government intervention can make a difference.  Like the Stimulus program:

An early progress report on President Barack Obama’s economic recovery plan overstates by thousands the number of jobs created or saved through the stimulus program, a mistake that White House officials promise will be corrected in future reports.

The government’s first accounting of jobs tied to the $787 billion stimulus program claimed more than 30,000 positions paid for with recovery money. But that figure is overstated by least 5,000 jobs, according to an Associated Press review of a sample of stimulus contracts.

Oops.  Ok, that’s probably not a good example of success.  So, ok then, no one can argue that the “cash for clunkers” program paid off:

A total of 690,000 new vehicles were sold under the Cash for Clunkers program last summer, but only 125,000 of those were vehicles that would not have been sold anyway, according to an analysis released Wednesday by the automotive Web site

The average rebate was $4,000. But the overwhelming majority of sales would have taken place anyway at some time in the last half of 2009, according to That means the government ended up spending about $24,000 each for those 125,000 additional vehicle sales.

Hmm.  On second thought, maybe we are screwed.


Wednesday night at Sam Ryan’s

Tonight they had the inaugural Wednesday dart tourney at Sam Ryan’s Pub.  Lots of fun, which was enhanced by the fact that my partner Ben and I walked out of the bar with first place money.  Woo Hoo!

It was a nice set up: double elimination and we split the high “A” and “B” players to keep the teams balanced.  Nice night, and something I will look forward to on a weekly basis.

See ya there.

The best laid plans…

…or no plan at all.  When it comes to The One, I’m not sure which is worse.

It is important that the nation is suddenly awakening to the possibility that the president has no real plan for anything whatsoever, and never did. He literally seems to be making it up as he goes along, and his strategy is to do nothing at all but procrastinate.

In the recent past, we have watched the White House and its branch offices gaze glassily past Iran, the Taliban, North Korea and Moscow in hot pursuit of their real enemy, which appears to be the dissenting media.

Economic policy, formerly the purview of rooms that at least contained Larry Summers, is now directed by a Chicago-hood playground pal named Valerie, and its focus is on the compensation levels of 200 people.

Joe Biden is the commander in chief.

The national health care bandaid will provide improved coverage for a group estimated at between 5 and 20 million people, some of whom are US citizens, at a cost of roughly an MRI machine per newly-covered patient.

The “most ethical Congress ever” — well….

Season finale

Well, we managed to take down Cake Mix, the second place team from Bless U Pub, 20-17 which keeps us in the fight for a playoff spot.  We have a make up match against Kaibigan at Friends Pub Sunday which should decide who’s in and who’s out.

I got demoted to six legs and managed a 4-2 performance.  Pretty frustrating to have the team lose confidence in me that way, but I have to admit I earned it.  In fact, I am seriously considering firing myself next season.  I’m just not playing “A” caliber darts these days.

Oh well.

Meanwhile, in international affairs…

So, we’ve already gotten a pretty good taste of what’s in store domestically under the guiding wisdom of The One.  Let’s now turn our eyes to foreign policy.

Ed Morrissey notes that our Nobel laureate leader is, well let’s be generous and just say clueless.

Barack Obama campaigned on restoring America’s standing with its allies, accusing the outgoing Bush administration of insulting and alienating our closest friends with his alleged unilateralism.  How has Obama done as President?  He has repeatedly insulted the British, insisting that there is no “special relationship” and demonstrating it by denying Gordon Brown the usual joint press conference on his visit to the US.  Reuters reports that another close ally has taken the measure of Obama and started looking elsewhere for cooperation:

French President Nicolas Sarkozy, initially dubbed Sarko the American for his pro-U.S. stance, is finding it much tougher to deal with Washington than he had anticipated and is recalibrating his policies accordingly.

Now who’s the go-it-alone cowboy?  Obama has damaged relations with the UK, France, the Czech Republic, and Poland, which even Joe Biden was forced to admit yesterday.  Instead, Obama has focused his friendlier attention on Russia and Iran.  What has Obama and the US received in return?  Laughter over Hillary Clinton’s amateurish “reset button” and zero cooperation on Iranian nuclear weapons.  And this is “smart power”?

I’m finding it increasingly impossible to believe the Obama’s ultimate goal is to dismantle the U.S. status as a superpower.  If that is what his mission is then I have to admit he’s off to a fine start.

Hope and change.

Sunday slumber

I don’t know, maybe it’s the autumn weather, but I’ve really started to embrace the whole nap taking thing.  Eh, or maybe I’m just turning into an old fart.  Whatever, I just woke up from one.

I’m the first to acknowledge that my nap routine is hardly a bloggable moment.   But I’ve decided that Sunday (ha, the day of rest!) will be the day I put politics aside and blog about what’s up with me.

Sadly, the fact that I started this post talking about naps gives you a pretty good indication of just how exciting my life has been of late.

I continue to struggle with the darts, dropping deep into the 20s in the rankings.  I’m extremely disappointed with my play to say the least.  With just a couple of matches left to play, we have not as yet locked up a coveted playoff spot.  We control our destiny, so I can hopefully do something to redeem myself  and then be ready for some peak playoff performance.  Time will tell.

What else?  Work is work.  Busy enough but I am sadly unmotivated of late.  I have good people working for me which thankfully keeps the pressure and stress levels manageable.

Last night I made a rare appearance at Blue Frog.  I didn’t even go for darts, just enjoyed some beers and chatted with proprietress  Eun Suk and the only other customer Helen.  Later I hooked up with Jee Yuen for some street side dining (fried chicken gizzards with onion) and norebang.

And that was the week that was.

It ain’t news if you don’t report it…

That seems to be what the White House is saying according to this report in the NY Times.

Mr. Ailes, who had reached out to Mr. Axelrod to address rising tensions between the network and the White House, told him that Fox’s reporters were fair, if tough, and should be considered separate from the Fox commentators who were skewering President Obama nightly, according to people briefed on the meeting. Mr. Axelrod said it was the view of the White House that Fox News had blurred the line between news and anti-Obama advocacy.

By the following weekend, officials at the White House had decided that if anything, it was time to take the relationship to an even more confrontational level. The spur: Executives at other news organizations, including The New York Times, had publicly said that their newsrooms had not been fast enough in following stories that Fox News, to the administration’s chagrin, had been heavily covering through the summer and early fall — namely, past statements and affiliations of the White House adviser Van Jones that ultimately led to his resignation and questions surrounding the community activist group Acorn.

There followed, beginning in earnest more than two weeks ago, an intensified volley of White House comments describing Fox as “not a news network.”

“It was an amalgam of stories covered, and our assessment of how others were dealing with those stories, that caused us to comment,” Mr. Axelrod said in describing the administration’s thinking.

Ok, let me see if I’ve got this down.  Fox News is breaking stories the administration doesn’t like.  Other news outlets admit they were too slow in reporting those stories.  So, according to the White House, Fox News is not news because if it wasn’t reporting the news, it wouldn’t be news.

Alrighty then.  I’ll give the administration props for not hiding the fact that what they are trying to achieve is a news blackout from the other networks.  The fact that this story is in the NY Times indicates that strategy may fail.  Imagine that, Obama failing.  Who woulda thunk it possible?

Oh, and I actually laughed out loud when I read this:

Speaking privately at the White House on Monday with a group of mostly liberal columnists and commentators, including Rachel Maddow and Keith Olbermann of MSNBC and Maureen Dowd, Frank Rich and Bob Herbert of The New York Times, Mr. Obama himself gave vent to sentiments about the network, according to people briefed on the conversation.

That is pure comedy gold.  Obama bitching to Olbermann et al about the bias at FNC.  It’s good the President has provided us with an example of the type of “real” news organization he prefers.

Well, the Soviet Union had Pravda and now Obama has his MSNBC.  Makes sense.

One more reason I’m in no hurry to return to the USA

Damn, this happened a few miles up the road from where I lived.

So, this guy gets up to make coffee and is standing nude in his kitchen.  Some passerby and her child cut through his yard and see him naked.  And he gets arrested for indecent exposure!

I say the bitch should have been charged with being a Peeping Thomasina.

For the record, I made my coffee in the nude this morning.  Lucky for me I have no yard.  And I’m in Korea.

A FOX in the hen house

So the Obama administration has declared war on FOX news.  Oh wait, Fox isn’t a news organization, it’s an arm of the Republican party (my memos from the WH take some time reaching Korea).

Seriously, whatever your politics, isn’t this just a little bit scary?  And you know, I don’t particularly care much for Glen Beck, but without FOX who would have reported on the Van Jones, ACORN, and Anita Dunn scandals?  Perhaps this is why the Obama regime is down on FOX, it is the only network left that is not afraid to report stories unfavorable to The One.  Racists!

Well, I’m not the only to notice the latest idiocy from the White House:

Where the White House has gone way overboard is in its decision to treat Fox as an outright enemy and to go public with the assault. Imagine the outcry if the Bush administration had pulled a similar hissy fit with MSNBC. “Opinion journalism masquerading as news,” White House communications director Anita Dunn declared of Fox. Certainly Fox tends to report its news with a conservative slant — but has anyone at the White House clicked over to MSNBC recently? Or is the only problem opinion journalism that doesn’t match its opinion? On “Fox News Sunday,” host Chris Wallace replayed a quote from an Obama interview: “I don’t always get my most favorable coverage on Fox, but I think that’s part of how democracy is supposed to work. You know, we’re not supposed to all be in lock step here.”

Maybe he should tell the rest of the team.

And I really liked what Claudia Rossett has to say:

This would be a very good moment for all those other news organizations — CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, the newspapers and the news web sites – to offer President Obama the perspective that it is utterly inappropriate for White House personnel to be opining publicly on the overall fitness of specific news outlets. The president has sworn to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” That includes protecting free speech, not dispatching White House staff and advisers to hold forth publicly as media critics denouncing news outlets they don’t like.

If errors of fact turn up in reporting, the White House is entitled to dispute them. But Axelrod and Emanuel were not disputing a particular piece of reporting. They were slamming wholesale a widely followed and highly informative news outlet, and denouncing it as not “legitimate.”

Government personnel getting into this act is altogether different. These are people paid out of the public purse, and speaking under the imprimatur of public institutions — in this case the White House. Here they are, urging White House-favored news outfits to follow the White House lead, and ostracize a specific news outlet the White House doesn’t like. This is Banana Republic stuff, a stock tactic of pressure and intimidation. The effect of such stuff, as a rule, is not to promote accurate news coverage, but to cover up stories the government doesn’t want aired, and shut up critics.

Other news outlets — the CNNs, ABCs, NBCs, CBS’s, or for that matter the New York Times and the Globe-Post-Mercury-Etceteras, may not agree with opinions expressed on Fox. But they would be wise to remember that what goes around comes around. And if they don’t rally now around the idea that the White House has no business vetting, according to its own “perspective,” which news outlets are “legitimate” and which are not, then the legitimacy of all news outlets becomes a function of “point of view” held by the White House. Welcome to the road to China’s Xinhua News Agency and Russia’s Channel One TV.

On a more hopeful note, at least some in the media are pushing back.  I really like this exchange between the WH press secretary and ABC’s Jake Tapper:

Tapper: It’s escaped none of our notice that the White House has decided in the last few weeks to declare one of our sister organizations “not a news organization” and to tell the rest of us not to treat them like a news organization. Can you explain why it’s appropriate for the White House to decide that a news organization is not one –


Gibbs: Jake, we render, we render an opinion based on some of their coverage and the fairness that, the fairness of that coverage.

Tapper: But that’s a pretty sweeping declaration that they are “not a news organization.” How are they any different from, say –

Gibbs: ABC –

Tapper: ABC. MSNBC. Univision. I mean how are they any different?

Gibbs: You and I should watch sometime around 9 o’clock tonight. Or 5 o’clock this afternoon.

Tapper: I’m not talking about their opinion programming or issues you have with certain reports. I’m talking about saying thousands of individuals who work for a media organization, do not work for a “news organization” — why is that appropriate for the White House to say?

Gibbs: That’s our opinion.

And one more thing.  If FOX is not a news organization, what the hell does that make MSNBC?

Jack and squat

And people (even some media types) are beginning to notice.

Recently an MSNBC personality accused the U.S. Chamber of Commerce of lobbying for policies that amount to being “treasonous to this country.” Remember how liberals roared in outrage at any hint of their patriotism being questioned for criticizing the Iraq War? Well, it’s the left that doesn’t shy from attacking the patriotism of those it dislikes. Recall the repulsive “General Betray-us” ad against Iraq commander Gen. David Petraeus. Recent opposition to Chicago’s Olympic bid was cast as a sign of a lack of patriotism among Obama critics.

The MSNBC blast against the chamber appears to dovetail with what the Politico newspaper reports is a White House and Democratic effort “to marginalize” the business organization. That echoes the administration assault on the Fox News Channel: It says Fox isn’t a news organization.

The White House trying to dictate who’s a news organization. Democrats out to gut a business group. Obama media allies damning Americans as racist, unpatriotic and treasonous. Is this the America Obama promised when he campaigned to end the cynical and divisive politics of the past?

Singles tourney

We had a singles tournament at Dolce Vita tonight and yours truly successfully clawed his way to a hard fought victory.

I took out Grant in the first round 2-0, then lost to Dustin1-2.  Through the losers bracket I pulled out wins against Dave. Jim and Dano.  Then I faced my nemesis Alistair (ranked 1st in “A” division) and surprised us both I think with a 2-0 victory.  A tough win against Ali put me in the championship round against the undefeated Dustin.

I needed to beat him in two matches to take the crown, which I managed to do to walk away with 90,000 cash and 30,000 in bar credit.

A good night’s work to be sure and it felt good to be on the winning end of things for a change…

A media lynching

Like him or not, what the media did to Rush Limbaugh should scare us all.  So, Limbaugh is “too divisive” to participate in an ownership group but Keith Olbermann can provide NFL game commentary?  What kind of bizzaro world are we living in?

Limbaugh responds to his critics in the WSJ.  Read the whole thing, but here’s the kicker:

As I explained on my radio show, this spectacle is bigger than I am on several levels. There is a contempt in the news business, including the sportswriter community, for conservatives that reflects the blind hatred espoused by Messrs. Sharpton and Jackson. “Racism” is too often their sledgehammer. And it is being used to try to keep citizens who don’t share the left’s agenda from participating in the full array of opportunities this nation otherwise affords each of us. It was on display many years ago in an effort to smear Clarence Thomas with racist stereotypes and keep him off the Supreme Court. More recently, it was employed against patriotic citizens who attended town-hall meetings and tea-party protests.

These intimidation tactics are working and spreading, and they are a cancer on our society.

Shame on Michael Wilbon, Rick Sanchez and CNN (I know MSNBC is beyond shame so why bother?).  And shame on all of us who don’t speak out against modern day lynchings like this.

UPDATE:  To be fair, Olbermann spoke out against the lynching of Limbaugh:

“There’re now gonna be character tests for sports owners?” Olbermann said.  “There’ll only be three of them left.  Unless they beat the Vikings Sunday as of next Thursday it will have been a full year since the Rams won a game.  My God, if Limbaugh wants to buy them far be it for me to tell him he’s flushing his money down a rat hole.”