Would You Believe That Sarah Palin Can’t Name Any Newspapers She Reads?

Every day the evidence piles up that Sarah Palin is one very dumb woman.  No other way to say it.  One can argue that she is over her head now in a national campaign that requires intellect and perspective, and that she is just not ready for ‘prime time’.  But I think there is more than that; I think under her beauty queen looks is an empty shell.  I really do not think she has any intellectual capacity or the statements that she has made over the past weeks would never have been uttered.

Her selection as the person to be a heart beat away from the Presidency underscores the crass political act that John McCain thought he was going to get away with when he named her.  But every day the most ridiculous and inane comments come out of Palin’s mouth.  And thankfully she says them on camera!

Here is the latest……..and I swear this tape has not been altered……..Palin is really this vacuous.

George Will: “Gov. Sarah Palin Is “Obviously” Not Prepared To Assume The Presidency If Necessary”

Word has leaked out that conservative commentator and writer George Will has little good to say about the vacuous Governor of Alaska, Sarah Plain.  Will spoke to a gathering of U.S. Senate aides, and some of them spoke afterwards to news sources.  Will had to have known his words would become public, and on top of his written harsh comments about John McCain, probably even planned it this way.

Appearing at a Senate Press Secretaries Association reception at the Cornerstone Government Affairs office, Will offered a harsh assessment of John McCain’s running mate.

Palin is “obviously not qualified to be President,” he remarked, describing her interview on CBS Evening News with Katie Couric as a “disaster.”

Will did state, according to a second source, that Palin has received rough treatment from the media; arguing that the Alaska Governor would have been “skewered” by the press if she had made some of the same gaffes as Sen. Joe Biden has in recent weeks. But his sympathies only extended so far.

Will, who did not return requests for comment., had also been previously critical of McCain’s choice of Palin, writing a week after it was announced: “The man who would be the oldest to embark on a first presidential term has chosen as his possible successor a person of negligible experience.” One week ago, meanwhile, Will penned a blistering op-edabout McCain, accusing him of practicing “fact-free slander,” holding a “Manichaean worldview,” and “characteristically substituting vehemence for coherence.”

FAUX News Video: John McCain Says He Might Suspend Campaign Again

After the complete farse and political gimmickry from John McCain about ‘suspending’ his presidential race before the first debate, comes this FAUX News nugget.   For all the good that McCain did while in ‘suspension’ and working for a deal, I think we need his help again as much as Galveston needs another hurricane.  But those fair and balanced ‘reporters’ at Faux News are eager for intervention ‘McCain style’.

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Economic Crisis Grows

The economic crisis may be hard for some to understand, but newspapers today are showing how the problems are hitting home.  After all the reasons from Americans as to why they felt it unwise to act with a package of assistance to financial institutions, comes the harsh facts of what a perfect financial storm looks like.  This is pretty basic stuff but as I read and listen to more and more Americans I am aware that there is a steep learning curve to be dealt with on this crisis.

The Chicago Tribune paints a great picture of the links between Wall Street and Main Street.

On Monday, as the credit crunch claimed a fresh list of major financial institutions on both sides of the Atlantic, the U.S. Federal Reserve pumped $630 billion into the global financial system, hoping to loosen up short-term credit markets.Wachovia Corp. “If banks aren’t lending, cars don’t get sold, equipment doesn’t get bought, and people don’t get hired.”Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson has argued that by purchasing toxic mortgage securities, his plan would give banks that capital. But some critics worry that this method would be too slow, complicated and indirect.

But rates barely budged, said Kevin Giddis, head of fixed income for Morgan Keegan & Co. in Memphis, and by the end of the day the spread between the federal funds rate and the interbank rate had moved back to historic levels, indicating lenders are frozen in place.

“Nobody trusts each other,” he explained.

That freeze is what worries economists the most, since it is a sure sign that the problems on Wall Street threaten the broader economy.

“What people don’t seem to understand is that Wall Street and Main Street are entirely linked,” said John Silvia, chief economist at

The ultimate solution is that banks need more capital to replace losses from the housing crisis. Otherwise, they simply won’t resume lending.

For many observers, however, Monday’s market convulsion proves global markets badly want a sign that the U.S. government is serious about providing some sort of bailout. Restoring confidence, they say, may be a crucial first step to stabilizing the markets. If the Paulson plan isn’t working, it can be adjusted or abandoned for a better solution.

“This is a taste of what might be in store if we don’t get some government intervention,” said Wells Fargo economist Scott Anderson. “It’s pretty close to a panic situation, especially in the bond markets.”

Meanwhile the Boston Globe shows why states will feel the effects over the lack of a measure to turn the crisis around.

In an example of how fragile credit markets have become, the state of Massachusetts yesterday tried to borrow $400 million to make its routine quarterly local aid payments to cities and towns. State treasury officials said the credit markets abruptly froze midday, leaving them $170 million short. The state will have to use its own funds to complete the local aid payments, draining the state’s balance to extremely low levels.

“I don’t think any treasurer alive could say they’ve ever seen anything like this,” said Timothy P. Cahill, the state’s treasurer. “There have always been cash shortages, but you could always go to the market and get more. This is the first time we haven’t been able to do that.”

Cahill said he believes the credit market will in effect remain shuttered today as the nation’s largest lenders hold on to their cash amid uncertainty over plans for a federal bailout. In short, the House’s rejection of a $700 billion Wall Street bailout plan takes Massachusetts and the rest of the US economy into territory that few policy makers and analysts wanted to explore.

The International Herald Tribune underscored the alarm that is felt worldwide.

EU Commission spokesman Johannes Laitenberger said that the “United States must take its responsibility in this situation, must show statesmanship for the sake of their own country, and for the sake of the world.”

“The turmoil that we are facing has originated in the United States,” he added. “It has become a global problem. The United States has a special responsibility in this situation.”

Belgium’s Dexia bank became the country’s second to get a government-assisted bailout in as many days, while Ireland boosted bank stocks by guaranteeing all domestic bank deposits. Central banks continued to pump short-term credit into banks in an effort to unfreeze interbank lending.

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New York Sun Closes And Another Feisty Voice Is Lost

The editorial in the New York Sun was historic in tone, as the short life span of the paper was printed in turbulent years.

What a run. A newspaper founded by a company that was scheduled to be created on September 11, 2001, announces its last issue on September 29, 2008, the day of the largest one-day point drop in the history of the Dow Jones Industrial Average. It’s easy to forget the boom years in between that were bracketed by the terrorist attacks and the financial crisis.

Readers know I am one who feels very sorry for the state of the newspaper industry.  When a newspaper fails and goes out of business, we all lose.  Such is the case today with the demise of the New York Sun.

The editorial announcement to the news staff was emotional and resonated with the main news to be found on any front page of papers around the country.

I tend to be an optimist and held out hope for a favorable outcome as late as mid-afternoon today. But among other problems that we faced was the fact that this month, not to mention this week, has been one of the worst in a century in which to be trying to raise capital, and in the end we were out not only of money but time.

The New York Sun was a conservative paper with an editorial page that favored free markets and capitalism, and the absence of that voice, though not alone on that point of view, nonetheless served as an important voice in New York City and will be missed.   More than once the feisty editorials they printed were considered ‘must reads’ around the country.  When a voice such as this is silenced we all have one less source for insight and perspective.

The final editorial summed up the the last day for the paper with not only a glance backwards, but forward as well.

So while this is a sad day for the Sun’s editors and employees and readers and backers, and a worrisome day and month for those many, many New Yorkers whose fortunes are tied to the financial markets, we end this project marveling at what a land of opportunity America is and what an open and dynamic city New York is. A few little-known editors and reporters managed to win backing for a project and nurse it to the point where — and we are very touched by this — even our competitors are saying it made a difference in the national and local debate and won the respect of the city’s leading citizens.

One of the things we were often asked about The New York Sun, these past seven years, was what made us choose the name. To remind ourselves of the answer we kept in our editorial rooms, hanging on a wall opposite a portrait of Frederick Douglass, the last number the Sun issued, on January 4, 1950, before the paper was passed on to Roy Howard for merger into the World Telegram. It carried on the front page a statement by its last publisher, Thomas W. Dewart, who wrote of the Sun: “Throughout its career it has supported Constitutional government, sound money, reasonable protection for American industry, economy in public expenditures, perseveration of the rights and responsibilities of the several states, free enterprise, good citizenship, equality before the law, and has upheld all the finer American traditions.

“It has opposed indecency and rascality, public and private. It has fought Populism, Socialism, Communism, government extravagance, the encroachments of bureaucracy and that form of governmental paternalism which eats into the marrow of private initiative and industry. With respect to all these things, we may proudly and truthfully say that we have fought a good fight …”

That is the part of the front page that visitors to the Sun often look at and that was quoted by the New Yorker in a piece that appeared in the magazine as we were starting, which noted that aside from the protectionism it wasn’t a bad encapsulation of what we are about. But what we like most about that last front page of the old Sun is not the statement of editorial ideals, admirable though they are, but the news stories that accompany it.

“Dewey Pledges No Tax Rise, Hits Truman Health Plan,” was one. “Dewey Asks City Rent Law” is another. “Mercury at 59.8 Sets New Mark,” was another. Taxes, national health care, New York City rent control, global warming — these were the issues in 1950 and they are the issues of today.

Situations change of course, and added to the mix has been the great debate over foreign policy and the war. We are struck with each crisis — including the one that has beset our markets, when the temptation is running strong for so many to take the statist bait, though not once did we consider asking Washington to bail out the Sun — of the importance of guiding principles.

We can only hope that some day in the future our own record will inspire some new generation of newspapermen and women with dreams to pick up the flag that today we put down. We hope it doesn’t take 50 years for the next new start, but even if it does take that long, we hope that they have as much fun as we have had and meet with as much success.

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The September/October Banking Crisis In A Graph Like March Madness

Now you can play the banking game like sports fans do for March Madness.

I do not have a source for this as it was sent via email, so it anyone wants to enlighten me I would appreciate it.

David Gergen: “House Republicans Who Deserve The Greatest Blame”

No one can call David Gergen a raving liberal.  Most label him a sensible and thoughtful moderate.  So his words matter, and sting.  Especially if you are a Republican member of Congress.  The call for leadership by Gergen, which has been stated by myself on this blog in several recent posts, should serve as a wake up call by all in Congress who proclaim that they care about the nation.

First, a ton of bricks needs to be dumped on the heads of those who voted against — if they can’t see the light, make them feel the heat. Democrats ought to be ashamed that 95 of their Members voted against; but it is the House Republicans who deserve the greatest blame — a significant majority of Democrats voted in favor of the bill, while conservative Republicans — defying the White House — voted against by over 2-1. I hear that some in the White House think the GOP vote was a disgrace; they are right.

Second, Nancy Pelosi has to remove the sting she created through her speech on the House floor. Republicans now blame her for the defeat, arguing that she was so partisan that some of their “yes” votes flipped and voted no. She may think this charge is unfair but since so much is at stake, she needs to go overboard to clear the air.

Third, the White House and Congressional leaders should count heads to make sure that everyone who voted “yes” today will do so again in a second vote. If the 228-205 margin holds, that means they have to flip at least 12 Members for a second vote. It will be much more difficult to get all of the switches from the Republicans. Solution: put in enough sweeteners so that each side has a bit more and get an agreement between Nancy Pelosi and John Boehner: “I will deliver 6 from my side if you deliver 6 from yours.”

Fourth, Hank Paulson must take another look at the idea at the idea of bankruptcy courts being able to review and help to rewrite private mortgages. How many Democrats would come over to “yes” if that were done? And what can he do to sweeten the pot for at least a half dozen Republicans?

Fifth, Barack Obama and John McCain should now join up with President Bush and the Congressional leadership to give this bill a much more vigorous push. After his ill-fated intervention of last week, McCain turned surly today, blasting Obama — unfairly — for the defeat in the House. That is ridiculous. But it is true that Obama could be a lot more forceful than he has been in working behind the scenes to round up votes. Both men need to show much more leadership here. President Bush obviously has so little clout that he can’t get this done. Obama and McCain should step up to help him — and good grief, avoid trying to claim credit or elbowing the other guy in the eye.

This is big time stuff. Washington isn’t playing with matches here; it is playing with dynamite. For the sake of the country — and for our standing as a world power — we need LEADERSHIP!

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A Blog……Of Sorts

When he received a journal as a gift, my eight year-old son was mystified.  “Mom, what am I supposed to do with this?  The pages are blank.”
“You write down interesting stuff that happens to you,” I said. 
“So its like a blog… on paper.”
–Beverly Taylor, Colorado Springs, CO