Sunday, June 5, 2011


A round-up of news items, articles, columns and blog posts that caught our eye this past week.

Team O might want to use GM and Chrysler as re-election campaign selling points but the folks at General Motors are thinking that may not be such a hot idea.

In other words, all signs point toward GM becoming a major talking point in the 2012 election cycle. But don’t expect the GM leadership to be particularly enthusiastic about being a poster child of a Democratic agenda — even though that particular party is the one that saved them from further financial disaster.

“No one at GM is happy” that it is “going to be used as one of President Obama’s success stories,” a source familiar with the internal dynamics of GM’s business told The Daily Caller, adding that the car company is not exactly on the same page as the White House in terms of declaring victory.

GM’s “not hanging a ‘Mission Accomplished’ banner and they shouldn’t either,” the source told TheDC, citing current economic and industry woes.

“GM is not in a position to declare victory,” the source added.
Gee, wonder why?

So, if you are scoring at home you have a) a bankruptcy cramdown where unions were shoved to the head of the line before secured creditors, b) a pack of blatant public lies regarding the payback of the TARP loan, c) a $9 billion loss on the first IPO last November and now this... a massive stock dump in order to clear the books ahead of the 2012 presidential elections.
Good to know.

Plan on the Obama administration dumping the rest of their GM stock some time during the summer where they hope no one will notice and before the re-election campaign kicks into high gear in the fall.

Confirmed: Daily Kos founder, Markos Moulitsas, pretty much a complete douchebag.

Confirmed Pt. II: No Correlation for Scores, Spending

Poway Unified spends less per pupil than any other school district in San Diego County, yet scores better than 91 percent of other districts statewide on standardized tests.

At the other end of the spectrum, the Mountain Empire Unified School District in rural southeast San Diego County scored lower on the state’s 2010 Academic Performance Index than any other district in the county, in the 9th percentile statewide. Yet it spends more per student annually than 78 percent of districts in the state, at $9,823.
Yeah, but school funding always makes for such great political theater. Remember: it's for the kids!

NPR pretty bummed that a cash-strapped al-Qaida may not be able to afford the excellent bennies packages for their, um, employees as they once did.

More proof of its corporate structure: As odd as it sounds, al-Qaida had excellent HR benefits. The seized documents showed that al-Qaida paid an unusual amount of attention to its fighters and their families. Married members were allowed to have seven days of vacation for every three weeks worked. Bachelors got five days off a month.

Married members also got a salary of $108 a month. The pay was smaller for single men and larger if the fighters had more than one wife. Now that the organization has less money and is under such pressure, it is unclear whether the benefits are as generous as they used to be.
What. No health care? Savages.

For Dodger fans out there currently agonizing over the rudder-less direction of the franchise in the wake of the ugly McCourt divorce proceedings, take heart: Walter O'Malley leveraged the messy divorce between Charles and Minnie Ebbetts to take full control of the franchise back in 1950 and eventually move them out here to Southern California. So, yeah, we're looking for a similar white knight, here.

Good news: More green technology no one will be able to afford.

Two leading makers of lighting products are showcasing LED bulbs that are bright enough to replace energy-guzzling 100-watt light bulbs set to disappear from stores in January.

Their demonstrations at the LightFair trade show in Philadelphia this week mean that brighter LED bulbs will likely go on sale next year, but after a government ban takes effect.

The new bulbs will also be expensive — about $50 each — so the development may not prevent consumers from hoarding traditional bulbs.
(italics, ours)

B-Daddy on Congress growing a spine with respect to our involvement in Libya.

Both Democrats and Republicans in the House seem to believe that the President is acting outside the bounds of law and the constitution with respect to Libya, passing a resolution calling on the President to take the actions necessary for Congressional approval of Libyan operations. Finally, I had begun to despair that the Congress would assert its authority. Despite the constitutional implications of the issue, I didn't think that the courts could resolve this particular issue, so absent action by the Congress, nothing would be done. Make no mistake, the resolution that was passed was non-binding, so they have not really exercised their full constitutional prerogative. But it is a worthy start.

Somewhat related: Victor Davis Hanson on the current state of liberal politics and politicking.

There is a vast machinery of selective liberal outrage, fueled and lubricated by the media, universities, and celebrity entertainment. When the redistributive welfare state starts to run out of money, the gears and pulleys are flipped on and shrill charges of greed, cruelty, nativism, and racism spew out of the production line. The machine sputters and shuts down when an aggrieved liberal suddenly must either make cuts or adapt the very policies that he used to damn.

Understand the mechanics of selective outrage, and our upside-down politics becomes comprehensible: A state suing to enforce immigration law is tantamount to a racist intrusion on federal jurisdiction, but a state openly flouting federal statutes for the Dream Act is acting in enlightened, humanitarian fashion.
So, the President behaving in a kinetically imperial fashion both here and abroad is all good when it's your guy doing it, right?

And finally:

Leslie at Temple of Mut on some of that "new civility" we've been hearing so much about.

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