Archive for February 18th, 2009

Wednesday Why-I-Love-The-Weekly-World-News Media Blogging

The Weekly World News performs an in-depth analysis of Shaquille O’Neal’s All-Star Game dance moves:

At Sunday’s NBA All-Star game, officials kept with tradition by announcing each player with over-the-top fanfare. But Shaquille O’Neal took the cake, when he entered the court in a white mask, surrounded by a large dance crew called the Jabbawockeez. Accompanied by a magical keyboard song, Shaq proceeded to lay bare his heart for the world to see.

Modern dance expert Jane Alston has agreed to break down Shaq’s dance and explain what he was trying to convey:

  • 0:14 – The accompanying dancers repeatedly turn toward and away from him, vacillating between curiosity and fear at his size
  • 0:18 – Shaquille flexes his muscles and extends his limbs to full-length, exploring the seemingly limitless capabilities of his body
  • 0:24 – Shaquille lashes out at the masses, expressing his rage at his isolation and their rejection of his physical differences
  • 0:35 – The masses attempt to constrain and isolate Shaq, so that he may never fully realize his gift
  • 0:44 – Shaquille finally rips away the pants of mediocrity to reveal his true destiny: become the world’s greatest ball player
  • 1:02 – Shaquille has evolved and let go of his anger, instead filling the masses hearts’ with admiration and acceptance; as the dance concludes, the world is now at peace

When, I wonder, will I be able to rip away my pants of mediocrity?

1 comment February 18th, 2009 at 11:02pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Monday Media Blogging,Weekly World News

Great Moments In GOP Hypocrisy

I think this is some kind of corollary to the everything-is-always-good-for-Republicans rule – Republicans can apparently take credit for whatever they want, even if they were bragging and high-fiving each other for unanimously opposing it just a few days ago.

  • Representative Blaine Luetkemeyer (MO-09) – “Luetkemeyer said the project is considered ‘shovel ready’ and that’s what the economy needs. President Darrell Krueger and Luetkemeyer discussed the educational benefits of the economic stimulus package.” [KTVO-TV, 2/17/09]
  • Representative Don Young (AK-AL) – “Alaskan Congressman Don Young won a victory for the Alaska Native contracting program and other Alaska small business owners last night in H.R. 1, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. [Congressman Don Young’s Press Release; 2/13/09]
  • Representative Ken Calvert (CA-44) – “All of us in the Inland Empire will do what we can to direct as much money as we can.” [The Press Enterprise; 2/13/09]
  • Representative John Mica (FL-07) – “I applaud President Obama’s recognition that high-speed rail should be part of America’s future,” [Congressman John Mica Press Release; 2/13/09]

Wow.  I particularly like the Don Young press release which goes beyond, “This is great for us and we’ll try to nab as much of that money we voted against as we can,” all the way to outright claiming passage of the bill he opposed as a “victory.”  He must really think Alaskans are stupid.

But wait, there’s more!

Under the terms of the stimulus plan signed into law Tuesday by President Barack Obama, infrastructure projects that are “shovel-ready” could be the first to be funded with economic recovery money.That’s the hope of Rep. Leonard Lance, R-Clinton Township, who toured the project’s construction sites Tuesday morning with Mayor Carey Pilato, members of the Green Brook Flood Control Commission and representatives of the Army Corps of Engineers, which is overseeing the project.

“This is a classic example of a “shovel-ready’ project,” Lance said after the tour.

Once again, the message is, “Let’s not dwell on who voted for what, and instead focus on how we can try to take advantage of the bill that I and my entire caucus unanimously opposed.”

And it’s not just Republican Representatives:

However, today Bond is touring Missouri to tout the very stimulus plan he railed against. In a press release, Bond boasted about an amendment he included in the bill to provide more funding for affordable housing — and that will create jobs:

Last week, Bond led a bipartisan group of Senators in introducing an amendment to help provide needy families affordable housing. Bond’s amendment provides $2 billion to fund low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) projects that have been stalled by the financial credit crisis. As part of the Democrats’ spending bill now signed into law, the Senate unanimously accepted Bond’s provision. […]

This provision will have a real impact in Missouri, especially for low-income, working families in need of safe and affordable housing. … Bond’s amendment will save more than 700 housing units and create 3,000 new jobs in Missouri.

“This is the type of emergency stimulus spending we should be supporting — programs that will create jobs now and help families,” Bond said.

If it weren’t such a worthy-sounding cause, I would be asking why Bond was allowed to insert an amendment to a bill he never intended to vote for.  So instead I’ll ask why he voted against a bill containing an amendment he championed.

February 18th, 2009 at 07:49pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Republicans,Wankers

“Young Invincibles”

NYT’s story about uninsured 20-somethings contains this priceless line:

In the parlance of the health care industry, Ms. Boyd, whose case remains unresolved, is among the “young invincibles” — people in their 20s who shun insurance either because their age makes them feel invulnerable or because expensive policies are out of reach.

Yes, I’m sure it’s one of those two possibilities…

February 18th, 2009 at 11:20am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Healthcare,Media,Wankers

Obama Administration Trying To Protect Rove

This is bad, very bad:

In a court brief quietly filed Monday, Michael Hertz, Obama’s acting assistant attorney general, said it was necessary to delay an effort to force Rove to be deposed in a congressional investigation into the firing of nine US Attorneys and the alleged political prosecution of a former Alabama governor.

Hertz said an effort was underway to find a “compromise” for Rove, and requested two weeks to broker a deal before proceeding in court.

“The inauguration of a new president has altered the dynamics of this case and created new opportunities for compromise rather than litigation,” Hertz wrote in the brief released late Monday by McClatchy’s Washington, D.C. bureau. “At the same time, there is now an additional interested party — the former president — whose views should be considered.”

The House Judiciary Committee sued the Bush Administration to force Rove to testify last year, saying that Rove shouldn’t be covered by executive privilege. They won. But their case has been held up by an appeal, and Hertz’s filing was the Obama administration’s first legal weighing-in on the matter. Obama’s Justice Department has supplanted the role of Bush’s Justice Department in the case, and their position will likely inform the terms under which Rove is questioned by Congress.

Hertz’s statement mirrors a statement from Obama White House Counsel Gregory Craig published Saturday.

“The president is very sympathetic to those who want to find out what happened,” Craig told The Washington Post. “But he is also mindful as president of the United States not to do anything that would undermine or weaken the institution of the presidency. So, for that reason, he is urging both sides of this to settle.”

Both Hertz’s and Craig’s statement point to an underlying challenge Obama faces with regard to Rove. Since former President Bush still claims that Rove is protected from testifying to Congress by executive privilege, even after departing office, Obama must decide whether he wants to risk diluting his own executive privilege in the future.

These statements, however, stand in contrast to Obama’s previous rhetoric.

In 2007, while in the Senate, Obama rebuked Bush’s White House as “the most secretive in modern history,” which aimed “to hide its abuse of our justice system.”

Responding to a Bush claim of executive privilege, he said, “By continuing to act as the most secretive White House in modern history, the Bush Administration has once again placed itself above the law in order to hide its abuse of our justice system from the American people. On the first day of an Obama Administration, we will launch the most sweeping ethics reform in history to shed sunlight on the decisions made by government and put the interests of the American people at the center of every decision that’s made.”

Smooth move, O.  Just go ahead and announce that you have no ethical principles beyond preserving your own power and prerogatives.  I’m sure the American people will understand.  I mean, it’s not like anyone’s clamoring for answers or justice, right?

February 18th, 2009 at 07:20am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Corruption/Cronyism,Democrats,Obama,Rove,Wankers

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