Wednesday, December 31, 2008

If The OHsu Fits

In his December 22 letter, Cohen also noted that Hsu was already "notorious for his political activities" and that it was "inevitable" that his client's "connections" to Bill and Hillary Clinton "and other democratic notables--including perhaps the president-elect--will be introduced at trial." Before becoming a key fundraiser for Hillary Clinton's presidential bid, Hsu co-hosted a 2005 California fundraiser for Obama's political action committee and introduced the Illinois Democrat to Marc Gorenberg, a Silicon Valley venture capitalist who later joined the Obama campaign's national finance committee. Prosecutors allege that Hsu directed his investors to donate money to specific candidates, and then reimbursed them in violation of federal campaign laws.

Looking Away

Of course, Tuesday's fiasco could have been avoided. Democrats in the state legislature could have stripped Blagojevich of his appointment powers and imposed a special election. Obama also could have demanded it. But as he has done so often in his career, Obama avoided a confrontation and looked the other way.

Democrats tried to finesse this, and they allowed Blagojevich the opening he needed, to hold that news conference and defy everybody. And so I'm forced to tip my hat to Gov. Dead Meat on this one, for sheer brazenness.

He's no jester. And it takes guts to keep a straight face while Democrats about you are losing theirs.


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Whoever called politics "the art of the possible" must have had a strange idea of what is possible or a strange idea of politics, where the impossible is one of the biggest vote-getters.

People can get the possible on their own. Politicians have to be able to offer the voters something that they cannot get on their own. The impossible fills that bill perfectly.

You want the government to create more jobs for people when there is widespread unemployment? It's been done. During the Great Depression of the 1930s, the government employed more young men in the Civilian Conservation Corps than there were in the Army. The money to pay for all this had to come from somewhere-- and that meant that there was less money left to employ other people in the private sector. While jobs created by the government may not have reduced total unemployment, these jobs increased votes for the administration, which is the real bottom line in politics.

Of A And B

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Another pitfall to straight thinking is sometimes called the cause and effect fallacy. That fallacy is made when a person sees event B coming on the heels of event A and then says A caused B. There may no causal relationship at all. Such is the case when the rooster crows and shortly thereafter the sun rises. That is easy to see but many historians assert that the 1929 stock market crash caused the 1930s Great Depression. Little is further from the truth. Instead, it was caused by inept fiscal, monetary and regulatory policies of the Hoover and Roosevelt administrations.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The "Vacuum"

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A major fallacy ensues from this
one-sided premise, which is that Israel is the sole stimulus for Hamas response, and therefore it alone bears the responsibility for the undeniable
misery in Gaza. Those quick to point out how Olmert's miscalculations have hurt
the people he governs will typically suggest that military incursions
"radicalize" Arab sentiment, leading to more suicide bombers and more
dead Israelis.

Assuming this is true, why is it that the corollary is never
asked: namely, how does Hamas radicalize Israeli sentiment? A much remarked-upon fact of the last 72 hours is that Israel's ultra-left-wing party Meretz
has endorsed Operation Cast Lead, a development that should concern partisans
of both sides. If there is merit to the "root causes" argument, then
surely it applies to the decisions undertaken by a Jewish policy as much
as it does to those undertaken by a Muslim one. Or does a belligerent Israeli
consensus form in a vacuum?

Believe It

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So to recap all of this change you can believe in: A Kennedy and Cuomo are competing to succeed a Clinton in New York; the skids are greased for a Biden to replace a Biden in Delaware; one Salazar might replace another in Colorado; and a Governor charged with political corruption in Illinois wants one of his cronies to succeed the President-elect. Let's just say we're looking forward to 2009.

The Amazing Coincidence

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The left's hope is that derivatives are so poorly understood that people can be convinced that turmoil in the market for credit default swaps -- an effect of soured mortgage loans -- is actually a cause of this crisis. Credit default swaps (CDS) are insurance policies against companies or investment vehicles going bankrupt and being unable to pay their creditors. This insurance is cheap when things are going well, and very expensive when investors expect the relevant entities to fail. Turns out that the markets for CDS and other derivatives not tied to the housing crisis are functioning normally.

in an amazing coincidence, it is the failure -- or the expected failure -- of entities with heavy exposure to toxic mortgages that is putting extreme financial strain on those who sold insurance. But the problem can't possibly be the toxic mortgages encouraged by Washington, according to the politicians. It must be the system of insuring against the collapse of those who bought the mortgages.
Welcome to We The Free! Using this blog: In addition to being mainly a personal research (linker) blog, I tend to keep some of my favorite posts bumped high and even dated into the future (notice the date on this post?). To read the very latest just click through to the "Cycles of History" post and scroll down from there... [ --This post held bumped to top-- ]

Fanning The Lazy

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It seems that AIG and other institutions became lazy and relied on the investigations and reasoning of others. Fannie and Freddie were recklessly buying subprime mortgage backed securities, funded by their government guarantee. The major credit ratings agencies were eager to go along with government pressure to approve subprime MBS bonds. They were comfortable having a an effective monopoly as government-approved companies.

So, I think the suits got it wrong, thinking: Why stay out of a market that everyone else has confidence in.?

AIG got into trouble evaluating the risk of default for banks holding mortgage backed securities. Banks bought AAA rated mortgage securities, supposedly rock-solid. The AAA ratings were given by government-approved ratings agencies. Insurers like AIG and other institutions relied on those ratings, and insured those banks by selling credit default swaps, which seemed to be a conservative risk. The actual risk of those mortgage securities was far higher.

Alarmed And Begging For Rescue

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"Third, that even though much of the public instinctively and correctly opposed the bailout, it sailed through without costing Congressmen their seats."

I heard a story on NPR about a poll that showed that the public was fairly evenly split on the issue of bail-outs. In addition, the media overwhelmingly sold the financial problems as the worst the world has ever seen since creation and hounded politicians for a solution. Policians saw that the media was on their side and would portray them as heroes. Then the media pimped for the pols and told the public they were stupid for opposing bail-outs.

Mencken said that the art of practical politics is to keep the public alarmed and begging for rescue. The mainstream media empower politicians in practicing their dark arts.

Government Is Here To "Help"

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Reason TV has a video of a panel discussion that really articulates the frustration that libertarians feel about the financial bailout. As Tim Cavanaugh points out, the bailout redistributes from the prudent to the profligate. As Veronique de Rugy points out (footnoting Andrei Shleifer, et al), when people lose confidence and trust in one another, their confidence in government increases. Thus, government failure that undermines confidence winds up reinforcing the demand for government!
Bernanke, Geithner, and Paulson were hailed as saviors, even though they could just have easily been portrayed as bumblers. The whole thing was portrayed as government having no choice but to come in and clean up the private sector's mess, rather than an ill-conceived attempt to stop markets from adjusting to a mess that was created by a combination of market failure and government failure.

More Head Banging Goodness

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I know I’m getting to be a broken record on this, but how long will this country keep trying to cure the disease with the disease?

Headline: “GMAC loosens credit to make vehicles easier to buy.” Call it the subprime auto loan prescription.

Easier auto loans for more people.

The struggling financing arm of General Motors Corp., rescued by $5 billion in federal aid on Monday, plans to use some of the money to make cars and trucks more affordable to a larger pool of customers.

Flashback Nov. 25: Borrow. Spend. Panic. Repeat.

Mish sums this madness up perfectly:

The more money wasted on stupidity like this, the longer the recession, and the slower the recovery. There is only so much capital, and using that capital to keep failed business models alive is sickening.

Pardon me while I bang my head against the wall some more.


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HEH: “Two years ago, like many somewhat financially literate readers, I was perusing newspapers stories about crazy negative amortization mortgages and exclaiming, ‘What are they, on crack?‘ Now we have our answer.”

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Sad To Say...

"Two plus two always equals four, never five," he said. ...

Before his speech, the assembly voted to raise the age at which workers can retire with a government pension by five years, to 65 for men and 60 for women. Officials said the change was needed because Cuba's population was aging rapidly due to a declining birth rate and immigration.

Castro said Cuban managers need to demand more from their workers, who receive free education and health care and subsidized food rations but on average earn only $20 a month. ...

He expressed dissatisfaction with the system of subsidies for those who can work, but do not, saying government handouts discourage Cubans from being more productive.

It's sad to say, but there are many in Congress and even some in the administration who could take a lesson from Castro's realism.

Dave Barry's Real Life

If you work for the New York Times, or if you are a fierce loyalist and fan of the New York Times, you may not want to read Dave Barry’s 2008 year in review.

Why?  Because in an year in which Barry hilariously eviscerates the media — sample:  “A mesmerizing speaker, Obama electrifies voters with his exciting new ideas for change, although people have trouble remembering exactly what these ideas are because they are so darned mesmerized. Some people become so excited that they actually pass out. These are members of the press corps” — he saves particular and substantial ridicule for the New York Times.


  • Barack Obama, continuing to shake up the establishment, selects as his running mate Joe Biden, a tireless fighter for change since he was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1849.
Some may call this satire. Others may call it, well, real life.  Dave Barry really may not be making this up.
"They chose dishonour. They will have war." -- Winston Churchill

Saturday, December 27, 2008


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A lot of people have been comparing the Ponzi scheme allegedly run by Madoff to the Ponzi scheme run by the U.S. government, also known as Social Security.

That’s entirely unfair.

To Madoff.

A Quote You Can't Place -- Why Not?

"First he incites war, then falsifies the causes, then odiously wraps himself in a cloak of Christian hypocrisy and slowly but surely leads mankind to war, not without calling God to witness the honesty of his attack." --Do you know who said this?

Anyone paying attention to politics circa 2006 would reasonably guess that it's a quote from some famous Democrat about George Bush. But it isn't -- the answer is here at the end of the second paragraph.

Did that make you blush? Then don't forget to take the "Who said it?" quiz (second item down) while you're flustered -- you may miss a few there too...

Friday, December 26, 2008


"Even the Rabbi and his wife at Nariman House were sexually
assaulted and their genitalia mutilated"
Remember, the Rabbi's wife was pregnant.

I think it might have been easy to deny the evil of the Nazis and their barbarism before their inconceivable atrocities were exposed. They were a most advanced, "modern" country - lovers of art, music (Wagner!) culture and technologically, they were ahead of the curve.
Islam, OTOH, has none of the brilliant disguises of the Third Reich. They contribute nothing to the advancement of humanity. They marinate in their hate, are prideful of their savagery and blood lust. And yet, the West apologizes, caves, bows, grovels ...... and so the pious Muslims strive to top their execrable wickedness, thereby insuring further capitulation and appeasement from the West.

More information is slowly coming out about the pious Muslims that attacked Mumbai November 26th - Mumbai's 9/11 and their depravity is unfathomable. This is pure evil.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Constitution Will Not Be Televised

""I hope to persuade you that the decline of a print-based epistemology and the accompanying rise of a television-based epistemology has had grave consequences for public life, that we are getting sillier by the minute."
-- Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death

Neil Postman argued persuasively that the content of our discourse depends on the means of communication. For example, he pointed out, smoke signals cannot be used to send complicated messages. Postman, a deep thinker and talented writer, believed that the written word as a communications medium permits careful, rational thought. Television, in contrast, only has room for thinking that is shallow and superficial.

The Past Blasts

Resolved, That the aim and object of the Democratic party is to preserve the Federal Union and the rights of the States unimpaired, and they hereby declare that they consider that the administrative usurpation of extraordinary and dangerous powers not granted by the Constitution — the subversion of the civil by military law in States not in insurrection; the arbitrary military arrest, imprisonment, trial, and sentence of American citizens in States where civil law exists in full force; the suppression of freedom of speech and of the press;
Resolved, That the shameful disregard of the Administration to its duty in respect to our fellow citizens who now are and long have been prisoners of war and in a suffering condition, deserves the severest reprobation
Sound familiar?

The Democrats are saying 1) The war is lost; 2) Let's negotiate; 3) The Constitution is trashed; 4) They steal elections; 5) We support the troops.

You've got to hand it to these Dems. They're certainly consistent.

That was the 1864 Democratic Party platform. Yes, 1864.

War has never solved anything you know. LOL

Today's NYeT BDS Update

Media Bias: The paper of record blames the "mortgage bonfire" on President Bush and his "laissez-faire" housing policies. But to get there, the Times completely ignored history prior to 2002.

That's when Bush gave a speech in Atlanta and announced a goal to increase minority homeowners by 5.5 million. According to the Times, this was the event that started the mortgage meltdown.

"He pushed hard to expand homeownership, especially among minorities," its lengthy front-page piece asserts. "But his housing policies encouraged lax lending standards."

If the Times had said the same thing about Bush's predecessor, its story might have a kernel of truth to it.

Clinton and his top banking regulators were far more aggressive in pushing minority homeownership.

It's plain the New York Times is trying to litigate its case — without full discovery or a fair trial — on behalf of its client, the president-elect, who derided the Republican "Ownership Society" during the campaign.

Monday, December 22, 2008


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The probable appointment of Caroline Kennedy, the 51-year-old daughter of former President John Kennedy, to fill Secretary-of-State nominee Hillary Clinton’s New York Senate seat is both laughable and yet a parable for our bankrupt times.

Consider aristocratic entitlement. Ms. Kennedy apparently spends a great deal of her time divided between her Park Avenue Upper-East-Side Manhattan townhouse and her hereditary estate on Martha’s Vineyard. She has had no real experience with the ordinary lives of New Yorkers, either a few dozen blocks away in Harlem (despite a sudden ad hoc lunch last week with the Rev. Sharpton at a soul food diner) or the state’s rural towns to the north.

Ms. Kennedy is about as undiverse as one could imagine.

But there is plenty of evidence that Ms. Kennedy reflects the current Democratic Party’s obsession with celebrity and Hollywood-like imagery

Cycles of History Again: We're Somewhere In The Bold Print...

"A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largess from the public treasury. From that time on the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury, with the results that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world's great civilizations has been 200 years. These nations have progressed through this sequence:

from bondage to spiritual faith;
from spiritual faith to great courage;
from courage to liberty;
from liberty to abundance;
from abundance to selfishness;
from selfishness to complacency;
from complacency to apathy;
from apathy to dependency;
from dependency back again to bondage.

Making Us All Rich

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“How do you get a bailout, Dad? Does it go to good or bad

Bailout Criteria

“I know it must sound strange, Junior. Many of the
companies getting government money did bad things. They took
risks with other people’s money. They padded their own pockets
instead of watching out for their customers. And they lost a lot
of money in the process.”

“How do you get paid to do bad things? You don’t give me my
allowance unless I walk Rusty after school, take out the garbage
and clean up my room.”

“You’re right, Junior. The government should really help
those in need.”

“C’mon Dad. If it were that simple, the government could
write everyone a check for a million dollars, and make us all

“Junior, I can tell you really have a knack for this stuff.
I’m glad I could help you.”

Saturday, December 20, 2008

The Children

In this book, the magnificent Dutch historian and linguist shows that play is not merely an element in human societies, but essential to them; that human cultures are themselves largely products of many forms of play. "Civilization is, in its earliest phases, played. It does not come from play like a babe detaching itself from the womb: it arises in and as play, and never leaves it."
As Christmas approaches, we have been taught to think of the poor and the disabled, the old who are shut in, the dying in our hospitals, the prisoners in our jails -- and at our best we visit them.

But we must remember that the largest disadvantaged group in our society -- often deprived alike of love and of their freedom -- is our children. Christmas means nothing if it is not for them.

The Welfare Of Ponzi

And the same bailout principle designed to save Detroit's unions by bankrolling management might be applied in this case. Just bail out Mr. Madoff's Ponzi scheme until the economy improves, and it becomes self-funding again.

Why not? For decades, every government in the Western world has been using current revenues to pay health, unemployment, old-age, and every other kind of "insurance" and "pension" entitlement. This is the core financial principle of the welfare state. It is a Ponzi scheme on a scale vastly beyond even Bernard Madoff's imaginings. But instead of having the people who conceived and executed this scheme arrested, we have honoured them as great humanitarians and "progressives."

The authors of what is actually the biggest Ponzi scheme in the history of the world have needed a constantly growing population, earning constantly more dollars per head, being constantly inflated (both the dollars and the heads), to keep their scheme running.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Sugarplum Gumdrops


WASHINGTON - Flanked by officials from the United Elf Toytinkerers union, SantaCorp CEO Kris Kringle today told the House Ways and Means Committee that without immediate government financial help, his firm would be forced to declare bankruptcy, lay off thousands of elves and reindeer, and potentially cancel its annual worldwide Christmas Eve toy delivery.

"These are grim economic times for everyone, but even more so for non-profit toy manufacturers in the Snow Belt," said Kringle. "Our accountants have indicated that we are on track to exhaust our reserves of cash and magical pixie fairydust by December 23. Oh deary me."

Kringle and UET union president Binky McGiggles presented a draft emergency bailout plan to the committee calling for US $18 trillion in federal grants, loan guarantees, and sugarplum gumdrops that they said would keep the company solvent through December 26.


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Does being spectacularly wrong about a major issue in your field of expertise hurt your chances of becoming the presidential science advisor? Apparently not, judging by reports from DotEarth and ScienceInsider that Barack Obama will name John P. Holdren as his science advisor on Saturday.

Dr. Holdren, now a physicist at Harvard, was one of the experts in natural resources whom Paul Ehrlich enlisted in his famous bet against the economist Julian Simon during the “energy crisis” of the 1980s.

In 1980 Dr. Holdren helped select five metals — chrome, copper, nickel, tin and tungsten — and joined Dr. Ehrlich and Dr. Harte in betting $1,000 that those metals would be more expensive ten years later. They turned out to be wrong on all five metals, and had to pay up when the bet came due in 1990

Next: Paul Wolfowitz for head of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Just A Guy In My Neighborhood Under The Bus (Part 82364)

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One good thing for Republicans: Obama is a moronic liar. Clinton was a good liar (much to our annoyance). This cat is a retarded one. That will be helpful.

So why did he tell such a ridiculous lie? I have to imagine it was to head off the next round of questions. Like what exactly did Rahm Emanuel propose as a counter-offer for Blago's pay-for-play requests? How much did he entertain the idea of playing ball one more time? At what point, if any, did Emanuel say "This is illegal and improper and these discussions are now ended?"

Or did he continue trying to "work with" Blago?

I assume Emanuel wasn't offering money for the seat. (Ass-ume.) But did he offer to have Obama campaign for Blago? Fundraise for him?

You can just see the Obama pattern unfolding with the Senate seat fixing scandal.

1. I don't know him
2. I know him a little
3. I know him but I thought he'd gone to rehab
4. I'm giving a major speech condemning everything he stands for

Monday, December 15, 2008

Deja Failure

In his paper of 1985, Cardinal Ratzinger simply went the extra step, to tell us what that regime is. He reminds us that "Western Civ" created free markets, and not vice versa; and inevitably, that the Roman Catholic Church created Western Civ. Like every other component of a high civilization, the market economy is, in itself, a mixed blessing, therefore a dangerous idol.

All my adult life, it seems, I have been explaining to libertarians that this is the difference between us: that we're both in favour of free markets, but only one of us is also in favour of civilization. I am not a social liberal, like most of them, but rather an intense social conservative. Moreover, I hold that all civilizations remain "socially conservative" until such time as they begin to collapse: as true of Confucian China as of the Christian West.

The rebuilding we need begins with church and family.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

No, Sorry -- An F

The AG also does not address the existence of the alternative legislative
impeachment process, other than to say that it might take too long. The failure
to address this alternative other than in passing requires at least a full grade
level deduction. If a criminal or ethical taint were sufficient to constitute a
"disability," then there would be no need for a constitutional impeachment
provision in the Illinois Constitution, which gives the sole power of
impeachment to the House of Representatives, with trial in the Senate, presided
over by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. The AG again construes the
Constitution in such a way as to render one of its provisions

What is most shocking about the AG's papers is that I
expected so much more. Some case authority. Something other than strained
arguments based on the dictionary. Something more highbrow than quoting Barack
Obama and Harry Reid. The AG may end up winning this case, but not on the
strength of her papers. C-
And this woman was on Obambi's short list to replace him. [bad language deleted]

Out Of The Memory Hole

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"Winning Glory"

So the safeguard against the AG's abuse of power is that the court will have the role of deciding? How can it be the court's role to make the final call about things that belong in the realm of impeachment? Why do constitutions put impeachment trials in legislatures? Because courts are ill-suited to such decision-making.
AND: Keep in mind that the legislative impeachment process is something under the control of Madigan's own father. The court asked her Madigan was asked "Do you know why your father has been appearing to be somewhat reticent on the -- (off mike)?" She told them to "ask him," which, the transcript notes, provoked laughter. Do you think that's funny?
The speculation is that the speaker is sitting back on this so Lisa can take the lead and get ownership on the issue," said one House member who favors impeachment but requested anonymity.
What a misguided notion of how to win glory!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

That's The Ticket ... Kah-razy

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As suspected, the AG's curious creation of a judicial power to remove an elected governor is a bit self-serving:

[Illinois AG] Lisa Madigan's father is Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan.

He's another big time ward boss in the Chicago Machine.

Kass says, "They don't want a Blogojevich impeachment hearing which would basically allow Blagojevich to talk about all of the deals they've done."

The Chicago Tribune spins this as Madigan just wanting "ownership" of the issue, not wanting the legislature to "steal her thunder" by doing the task they are constitutionally charged with doing and she is not.

I think Kass is right that there's a bit more to it than thunder and ownership.

Meanwhile, Jesse Jackson, Jr. joins in the media-Democratic narrative that Blago is just kah-razy, and so, I guess we're to infer, cannot possibly be representative of Chicago machine politics.

Something Missing

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From the evening of Nov. 10 until yesterday, Blagojevich, Obama, and his transition team acted in ways that are consistent with a knowledge of Blagojevich’s bribery attempt and a rejection of that attempt. What doesn't fit easily with the timeline is Obama's statement yesterday.

It should be noted that it is not a crime to fail to report a bribery attempt. The federal misprision of felony statute would seem to make it a federal crime to fail to report a federal felony

But case law has conclusively determined that mere non-reporting is not enough. Active concealment or the acceptance of a benefit for concealing is required.

Yet, looking at this timeline of Blagogate, it seems quite possible that someone in the Obama Camp is either lying or at least not revealing what they know.

Something important is missing from this story. Let's hope that, whatever it is, the absent fact or explanation will allow the narrative to fit Obama's denial more naturally.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Touch Your Nose

Roll Call scoops everyone with an interesting piece that suggests how Governor Blagojevich may have sounded out Barack Obama about his vacant Senate seat, as well as giving a candidate for identifying 'Adviser B':

Blagojevich has relied heavily on political advice from inside-the-Beltway strategists since taking over the statehouse.

In particular, political consultant William Knapp of Washington-based Squier Knapp Dunn Communications has worked closely with the Illinois governor.

Knapp’s partner, Anita Dunn, was a top adviser to Obama during the presidential campaign.

Knapp, who is a member of the governor’s small inner circle of advisers, helped develop the strategy that catapulted Blagojevich to become the first Democrat in 26 years elected Illinois governor.

In doing so, Knapp became Blagojevich’s highest-paid Washington consultant.

Did Blagojevich use Bill Knapp to reach out to the Obama campaign -- via Knapp's partner Anita Dunn

George Who?

I don’t see anyone making this point in the ‘Seatgate’ (Senate Seat for sale).

Advisor B obviously has the authority to represent Obama, and has the knowledge and ‘where with all’ to know how Obama operates and what Obama would ‘approve’ of.

For Advisor B to be presenting and representing the idea of a 501( c) (4) non profit and for him to have all of the knowledge on how they operate, Advisor B incriminates himself and Obama that ‘this has already been done before’.

I would assume a whole lot of 501 ( c) (4)’s that are tied to Obama and Michelle, and other Democrat Politicians are getting sanitized right now.  It is also interesting to point out who the MASTER of 501 ( c) (4)’s is, none other that George Soros, although many of the Arabs and muslim organizations have been getting pretty good at them to.

Advisor B may have revealed ‘the cards’ that Obama and Michelle are already holding in promised 501 ( c) (4)’s, the next step would be to find out ‘who’ set them up. 

The Real OFitzmas

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 One scenario that I can imagine is Fitzgerald (or his people) warning the Obama camp that they were getting close to the quicksand in the swamp after hearing the 2-hour horse-trading marathon through the wire tap.

I have no doubt that this is exactly what happened.

The media doesn't need to cover for BHO.

Fitz has already seen fit to do so.

Let's Make A Deal

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And Obama's denials are very circumscribed:

n a news conference in Chicago to introduce his choice as secretary of health and human services in the new administration, Obama reiterated that he has never spoken to Blagojevich about the appointment of a replacement to serve out the remainder of Obama's Senate term, and he said he has not been contacted by any federal investigators regarding the case.

Obama said he has asked his team to "gather all the facts about any staff contacts" that might have taken place between his office and Blagojevich or his advisers. But he said he was "absolutely certain" that his office was not involved in "any deal-making" with Blagojevich on the Senate seat.

Obviously, "I" didn't talk about this to Blago allows for the possibility that, say, Rahm Emmanuel did, and a denial about "any deal-making" doesn't mean deals weren't discussed. Just not made.

Thanks to CJ.

I Think I Know Now What It Will Take To Kick Off The Oministration

Ruh-Roh... It was already reported that Rahm Emanuel was keeping quiet since the Blagojevich Scandal broke.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Ruh-Roh...Rahm Emanuel Continues to Duck Questions On Hot Rod

Ruh-Roh... It was already reported that Rahm Emanuel was keeping quiet since the Blagojevich Scandal broke.

But, this morning and later this afternoon Rahm Emanuel continued to duck questions about the scandal.
** The Smoking Gun, that bastion of conservative thought, already reported that Emanuel was linked to the case:

"Rahm Emanuel, the incoming White House chief of staff, is referred to in the affidavit as "President-elect Advisor."
He will have to issue his pardons at the start of his term rather than the end. And his pardons may need to be issued from the federal pen.

But the Dems will wonder why anyone would consider it problematic...