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Thu Apr 22, 2010 at 01:51 PM PDT

Paulson and the SEC

by chap

I am no finance guy.  But I understand a con when I see one.  Ok so let me see if I understand this SEC lawsuit.  The Abacus product was something akin to a legal sports betting deal.  Some are betting for the product; some are betting against.  Perfectly legal.  Goldman Sachs is like the bookie—gets paid regardless.  But the problem is that one of the guys (John Paulson) pushing the “bet against” side is also responsible for determining what goes in that fund.  So he is basically like Pete Rose betting against a team he manages and is controlling who is in the game and who is not.  And if I understand correctly, Goldman’s defense is that the bettors are savvy and know that Pete Rose is gambling and managing at the same time.  

McConnell has some nerve trying to sell us on the idea that we don't need tough derivatives reform.  And how about Hatch trying to suggest that it would "stifle innovation."  I always thought that kind of innovation was called fraud.


Tue Dec 15, 2009 at 08:19 AM PST

From Lieberman's Website

by chap

Ok disclaimer first.  I feel completely demoralized.  I feel sold out in every way.  I remember when Joe told us all that he was better positioned to deliver on Health Care than Ned Lamont.  I see him now insisting that the Medicare buy in that he pushed in September be scrapped.  

After reading the depressing news for the past two days, I had to take a look at Joe's website just to see how he is spinning this sucker punch to the nads that he is giving the country and progressives in particular.  


What should be done about Joe

55%38 votes
33%23 votes
10%7 votes

| 68 votes | Vote | Results

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Wed Oct 07, 2009 at 10:28 AM PDT

Alabama Fat Tax

by chap

Nope that is not a typo.  I am not talking about the "Flat Tax"; I am talking about an obesity penalty.  State employees will now have to be screened for a BMI or body mass index to prevent their Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance from going up $25/month.  So if you are overweight, be prepared to shell out an additional $300 a year.  Here is an article from webmd that discusses the controversy.

Some are saying that for many, this amounts to a penalty for genetics.  I think it will be interesting to see how this plays out.


Is this a good idea

31%32 votes
42%43 votes
3%4 votes
22%23 votes

| 102 votes | Vote | Results


Wed Sep 30, 2009 at 02:14 PM PDT

But we don't have 60 votes

by chap

Look, we know that the public is on our side.  They support a public option.  Yet we keep hearing "We don't have 60 votes".  CAN WE PLEASE PLEASE make them actually filibuster health care.  People just think of the political capital that would generate.  Please don't just roll over at the threat of a filibuster.  Just think of the Macaca moments this could generate.  We would have ads for decades.  Not ONE of their gasbags can play to the nation on this deal.  It will inevitably descend into screed and hate and fear and just plain nonsense.  I say the filibuster game ALWAYS works in our favor.  Can we please Call that bet. . . Let's see those cards, and let the whole country see them.  Let's see how long they can go before they self destruct.  
Who's with me????


Thu Sep 03, 2009 at 11:07 AM PDT

Thomas Frank WSJ OpEd

by chap

This is one of the most clear, concise arguments I have read on the healthcare issue.  The piece asserts that what is being argued is the larger issue of the role of government.  This is the same brilliant writer that gave us What's The Matter With Kansas some years back.  He further asserts that progressives are losing ground because they are in the wrong argument.  So many righty talking points debunked in such economical style.  I really love this guy's work.  Among my favorite points is the idea that private insurance would have self destructed years ago if it were not for new deal statists like Johnson taking the most costly customers out of their math.  Also of note is the relatively easy debunking of the "why should i pay for someone else's healthcare" meme.  Please jump over and have a read.  you won't be disappointed.


Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 06:22 AM PDT

Steven Crowder: Obamacare

by chap

I am a yellow dog democrat.  Full on progressive here, but i live in a really red state. Many of my libertarian friends are decrying socialized medicine.  They use all the scary buzzwords.  One of them (just a great guy though Ideologically very different from me)sent me this video.  Surely many of you have seen it, but I have not seen any diary here about it or the website it comes from.  Steven Crowder is a conservative comedian (oxymoron?) that takes the viewer through the Canadian health care system.  The video is hosted by PJTV which seems to be come kind of conservative comedy site. Many of my diaries are not pontifications but rather forums for discussions(by far my favorite type of Dkos experience).  So in light of that, tell me what you know about this.  Who is behind this site?  I don't know that much about Canadian health care.  School me.  How off the mark is this?  Who is this guy?  Google searches yield only commentary from the right saying what a hero he is.  No one on the left seems to be taking notice of this bit of conservative viral buzz.  What are your thoughts?  Here is the link:


Mon Apr 27, 2009 at 02:10 PM PDT

Strange Drudge AD

by chap

Ok so I wander ofer to Drudge to see how the torture story and the wiretapping story are playing in the land of the red staters, and I run across this puzzling advertisement where you usually see the cute girl wearing the tee shirt with some insane rightwing nonsense--you know--right above the AP links.  The ad features a woman's back and says something like The leading cause of breast cancer. . .

So I click.

The site it takes me to tells me all about how Mammograms cause cancer and that if you even engage in mild drinking of alcohol it increases your risk of cancer almost 300%.  

Has anyone else seen this thing?  I just tried to look again, but apparently they rotate.


Mon Jan 12, 2009 at 10:17 AM PST

No Purple Heart for PTSD

by chap

My diaries here are not pontifications.  I am not trying to persuade; I like the exchange of ideas.  Consider my mind open.  Now, that being said, I heard on NPR this morning that the Pentagon has reviewed its rules for the awarding of the Purple Heart and has decided that no award will be given for PTSD.  I think mental health advocates were really hoping for a policy change to bolster the legitimacy of PTSD as an actual condition.  

I also believe that with advances in brain chemistry, there is mounting evidence that PTSD (and most mental disorders)are indeed physical.  Given that this is the case, I do not understand the decision.  How does it differ in terms of disability from Traumatic Brain Injury?  Is it that one can result from simply witnessing violence?  Does that make the injury any less real?  Does this stem from vestigial stigma associated with mental illness?  

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Tue Nov 04, 2008 at 04:40 PM PST

Jomentum Reaches Absolute Zero

by chap

Ok I just read that Lieberman is all over Wingnut Radio talking about the apocalypse that would occur if the Dems get the filibuster proof majority.  Boy would I love to wake up tomorrow and see that we can forget about this guy.  Here's to getting out the vote to such an extent that we never have to think about this clown again.  Plus, I don't know about you kids, but this guy spoils my record.  He represents the only person in my entire voting history that I voted for, then later felt sick about.  Every other candidate I have personally voted for continues to have my respect, and might still be able to get my vote.  Just Joe.  

I voted for him as most of us did.  

Just look at what this guy has become.  


Tue Oct 07, 2008 at 11:40 AM PDT

The Importance of Being Letterman

by chap

I have always thought Dave was a pretty good barometer of middle America CW.  He rightly called out McCain for his snub and silly pandering political ploy.  But now I hear that there may be a make-up in the works for right around the time of the third debate.  This could go a couple of ways.  


How do you see McCain's chances on Letterman

28%51 votes
26%48 votes
33%60 votes
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| 181 votes | Vote | Results

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Wed Sep 17, 2008 at 01:48 PM PDT

On the Palin Email Hack

by chap

Disclaimer:  I am a diarist who uses Dailykos not to pontificate, but to learn through interaction in the public arena.  So consider my mind open.

Now that said, I have some thoughts about the Palin email hack.

When I first heard about it, I thought "What a horrible invasion of privacy."  But as it settles in and assimilates with the other junk in my brain, I am re-thinking.  


Do we support the hack?

64%249 votes
26%103 votes
9%37 votes

| 389 votes | Vote | Results

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Mon Jun 23, 2008 at 09:11 AM PDT

Fisa Question

by chap

Ok follow this logic.

If all a lawbreaker has to do under the newly proposed FISA guidelines is to show some sort of presidential note saying that whatever illegal actions were taken were at the behest of the president that is excused right?

And if as the president asserts, the Justice Department as part of the  executive branch acts as an extension of the presidential power (and presumably other parts of the executive branch as well), Then would the Watergate break in have been ok?  

Would Liddy and the Cubans gotten a pass?

Contractors hired by the executive branch?

Lt Calley?

Blackwater security thugs?

Presumably all US hired torturers would just have to show their note right?

US Attorneys who prosecuted selectively on the basis of party affiliation just need to show that they were directed to do that, correct?

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