Archive for August, 2011

August 30, 2011

CHANGE: Presidential Candidate Gov. Gary Johnson: Cut Federal Spending by 43% – and Cut Social Issues From GOP Agenda. Works for me.

August 30, 2011

HURRICANES AND post-traumatic stress.

August 30, 2011

LONG-TERM UNEMPLOYMENT: Tim Cavanaugh on the rise of the “Unemployees.”

August 30, 2011

THOUGHT EXPERIMENT: What If Obama Were Governor Of Texas?

For anyone having trouble imagining Rick Perry replacing Barack Obama as America’s president, imagine if Barack Obama had replaced Rick Perry as governor of Texas.

Both Obama and Perry inherited an economy from George W. Bush, but here’s what happened in each case:

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), under Obama, 2.4-million jobs have been lost in America.

In the first decade of Perry’s tenure, from June 2000 to June 2010, the BLS says that Texas had a net gain of 907,000 jobs—the best record in the country. . . . Since Obama’s inauguration in January 2009, unemployment nationwide has gone from 7.6 percent to 9.1 percent. The current unemployment rate in Texas with Perry as governor is 8.2 percent.

During the past seven years, CEOs polled by Chief Executive magazine have rated Texas first in the nation in business development and job growth. The Commerce Department’s Bureau of Economic Analysis reports that in 2010, Texas’ economy grew 5.3 percent versus 3.8 percent for the overall U.S. economy.

You can be sure that if Obama were Governor of Texas, Texas would get better press, regardless.

August 30, 2011

ANDREW BREITBART: How Obama Lost His Presidency In August, 2009.

August 30, 2011

POLL: 57% of Americans Think Spending Cuts Will Help The Economy. Plus this: “Nearly 69 percent of taxpayers expect their taxes to go up in the next five years and 62 percent think Congress will spend tax increases on new programs instead of paying down debt.” Well, that’s certainly been the pattern.

August 30, 2011

JOHN HINDERAKER: The Gibson Guitar Saga Gets Steadily Curiouser.

August 30, 2011

POLL: One In Four Democrats Wants To Dump Obama.

August 30, 2011

DISCUSSION: Politics And The University. Note the defensive crouch.

August 30, 2011

GOOD LUCK WITH THAT: Germany Dims Nuclear Plants, But Hopes To Keep Lights On.

August 30, 2011

WHITE HOUSE: Obama Still Hasn’t Finished His Jobs Plan. “He is still having conversations and meetings and looks to finalize his plan, so the answer is no, he’s not complete with that process.”

August 30, 2011

THE NEW GENERATION of Microbe Hunters.

August 30, 2011

CHANGE: House GOP announces jobs plan focused on cutting regs and taxes.

August 30, 2011

THE I.R.S. LOSES TO A DEAD MAN: Enron’s Ken Lay Wins Posthumous $3.9 Million Tax Court Victory. To be fair, a dead man who was really good with accounting . . . .

August 30, 2011

IS IT PARENTAL NEGLECT to let your kid bike to school?

August 30, 2011

JACKBOOTS IN WISCONSIN: “Despite (or perhaps because of) their failed effort to retake the Wisconsin state senate through recall elections, pro-union activists continue to prove that there is no level they won’t stoop to in their campaign of agitation against Gov. Scott Walker. . . . As it turns out, those very reforms are already paying dividends. But that is entirely beside the point as far as Walker’s opponents are concerned. Already this year, union activists have led jeering, zombie-themed protests at a Special Olympics rally and vandalized a Catholic elementary school as Walker read Dr. Suess to children inside. Most recently, the anti-Walker folk seem to have fallen back on a popular, albeit less creative tack, an old favorite among liberal activists: calling your opponents Nazis.”

August 29, 2011

WHEN DID IRENE stop being a hurricane? “On Sunday morning Anderson Cooper of CNN was asking about the strong winds that were being forecast and this brings up something that has really bothered me about the storm: there is really no reliable evidence of hurricane-force winds at any time the storm was approaching North Carolina or moving up the East Coast.”

August 29, 2011

BRENDAN LOY GOES DORMANT AS “WEATHER NERD” until the next big storm.

August 29, 2011

MORE THOUGHTS ON affirmative action for ugly people.

August 29, 2011

STACY MCCAIN: My video was ripped off! “Some vicious monster ripped off my video and edited it, so that when Bachmann begins by jokingly asking the crowd, ‘Who likes wet people?’ — because everybody was soaked to the bone, including me — instead there is a caption, ‘Who likes white people?’ . . . Now, who do I sue for copyright infringement, piracy and fraud?” Everybody in sight, Stacy. Everybody in sight.

More here: No, Bachmann did not ask a crowd, ‘Who likes white people?’

This is a sign of desperation, though.

August 29, 2011

SHOCKER: Thousands Leave Indiana Public Schools When Given A Choice. “We’re constantly told that the Democrats are the party of choice so it’s funny how angry liberals get when people don’t choose them. It’s what we just witnessed in Wisconsin. It’s why teacher unions overwhelmingly support Democrats and Obama. It has nothing to do with children, choices or education. It’s about moneymoneymoneymoneymoney. This is exactly why Obama is against school vouchers for poor kids in Washington, DC.”

August 29, 2011

AT AMAZON, HDTVs Under $499.

August 29, 2011

THREE MINUTES, two teleprompters.

August 29, 2011

WOULD WE BE HEARING THIS IF A REPUBLICAN WERE PRESIDENT? Higher Unemployment Rates Might Mean More Sex. I’m guessing not.

August 29, 2011

“YES, IT’S A RELIGION.”

August 29, 2011

A BELATED Happy Bloggiversary to Tam.

August 29, 2011

YEP: ‘Sixty to 90 percent of jobs are found informally—mainly through friends, relatives, and direct contacts.’

August 29, 2011

HAYEK’S GHOST haunts Julianne Hough. With pictures.

August 29, 2011

ANN ALTHOUSE: “Who did that? Who leaked the story to the politically partisan journalist, Bill Lueders? Surely, the judicial commission is going to tell us.”

August 29, 2011

GIBSON AND MICHELLE: Aristocracy Hypocrisy: Michelle Obama’s Gibson guitar gift. “If it turns out that the Indian rosewood in question is illegal contraband in the eyes of Obama’s DOJ, then Michelle Obama is just as guilty of trafficking in it as Gibson. In 2009, Michelle Obama gave Carla Bruni-Sarkozy a Gibson guitar with a fretboard made of the material.” Laws about wood are for the little people.

August 29, 2011

IMAGE SEARCHES “poisoned” by cybercriminals.

August 29, 2011

HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE: College Presidents Bullish on Online Education. Others not so much.

August 29, 2011

FASTER, PLEASE: A sutureless method for joining blood vessels.

August 29, 2011

DISASTER-PREP TIP: How To Keep Your Cellphone Going As Long As Possible.

Note this in particular: “Text messages use a tiny fraction of the power required to make an actual phone call. In addition, there are very good selfish and selfless reasons to use SMS instead of calling during a wide-spread crisis: Texting helps keep the network from being overwhelmed, and texts are more likely to get through than voice calls.”

Also: “Need to check Twitter? Don’t forget that your 3G Kindle has a web browser in it.”

August 29, 2011

AT AMAZON, up to 60% off on surge protectors.

August 29, 2011

ROBERT SAMUELSON: Say “Yes” To Oil Sands. “We would be crazy to turn our back on this. In a global oil market repeatedly threatened by wars, revolutions, and natural and man-made disasters — and where government-owned oil companies control development of about three-quarters of known reserves — having dependable suppliers is no mean feat. We already import about half our oil, and Canada is our largest supplier with about 25 percent of imports. But its conventional fields are declining. Only oil sands can fill the gap.”

So, naturally: “Environmentalists are outraged.”

August 29, 2011

DEBUNKING the three biggest exercise myths.

August 29, 2011

JEFF CARTER ON FARMAGEDDON. “This documentary illustrates the plight of the organic farmer, specifically the organic dairy farmer. If a dairy farmer wants to sell raw milk, they will be run out of business and many times imprisoned by the federal bureaucracy. The USDA actively tries to run Raw Milk Producers out of the business. They work closely with agents from state agricultural agencies. The documentary shows film of agents descending on various organic farms and outlets, guns drawn, SWAT teams present. It’s straight out of science fiction and something that you can’t believe happens in America. I can understand a huge police presence when going after a drug lord, but a family farmer? Sure, farmers keep guns but in my experience they aren’t violent people.”

Slash their budgets.

August 29, 2011

A LOOK AT orbital technologies’ space hotel.

August 29, 2011

BILL QUICK ON the unfortunate state of the publishing industry.

Meanwhile, we’re thinking of doing a much-needed update on the space law textbook, but there’s a problem. The contract gives Westview Press — now Perseus Westview, intermediately HarperCollins Westview — the right of first refusal. But the phone number gets me a phone tree with no operator, and a directory that requires me to know who I’m calling. And everyone I worked with there is long since laid off or moved on. I guess I’ll have to just write them a letter. . . .

August 29, 2011

HAS THE CHEVY VOLT suffered a short with consumers? “The sales figures for the Chevy Volt are down, raising red flags throughout the auto industry—especially during a time where Volt production has been ramped up.”

August 29, 2011

IS THIS REALLY GOOD NEWS? U.S. To Beat Brazil As World’s Leading Ethanol Exporter. Plus, a regulatory/subsidy fail: “Since the federal renewable fuel mandate classifies sugarcane ethanol as an advanced biofuel, but corn-based ethanol as only a biofuel, it’s quite likely the United States will continue to export corn-based ethanol to Brazil while at the same time importing mass quantities of the sugarcane-based biofuel from Brazil.” Well, it’s a “fail” except for the people making money off it.

August 29, 2011

SELF-DEFENSE: Iowa congressman and his family retell how they fought off a gun-wielding robber. “Mitchell opened the gun cabinet and pulled out the 12-gauge that had belonged to Leonard Boswell’s father. It was not a sentimental choice: He opted for the 12-gauge because it came with several boxes of ammunition, ample rounds for any additional assailants who might be lurking outside.” Would the WaPo reporting be as sympathetic if it didn’t involve a Democratic congressman?

August 29, 2011

MICHAEL YON: The Art, Science and Carpentry of Explosives.

August 29, 2011

IN THE MAIL: Surviving the Shadows: A Journey of Hope into Post-Traumatic Stress.

August 29, 2011

WALTER RUSSELL MEAD: Clarence Thomas And The Amendment Of Doom: “This is one of the most startling reappraisals to appear in The New Yorker for many years. It is hard to think of other revisions as radical as the declownification of Clarence Thomas: Herbert Hoover as the First Keynesian? Henry Kissinger as the Great Humanitarian? . . . If Toobin’s revionist take is correct, (and I defer to his knowledge of the direction of modern constitutional thought) it means that liberal America has spent a generation mocking a Black man as an ignorant fool, even as constitutional scholars stand in growing amazement at the intellectual audacity, philosophical coherence and historical reflection embedded in his judicial work.” Yeah, that’s pretty much the story.

August 29, 2011

HIGHER EDUCATION UPDATE: At Law Schools, Age Bias Co-exists with Outdated Practices.

August 29, 2011

SALENA ZITO: Battleground States Of Resentment: “Whether it is called General Lee Highway, as in Virginia, or Molly Pitcher Highway, as in Pennsylvania, the lives and economic strain along U.S. Route 11 tell of a country’s disappointment with Washington – specifically, with President Obama. . . . Not so long ago, populist-Democrat rhetoric was popular here and farther up the road, in West Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania. Americans along such roads all across the country are struggling economically. They are consumed with uncertainty. And they have tuned-out the president.”

Plus this: “Obama took to pointing fingers when his poll numbers started to slip last fall. So far, he has blamed the stagnant economy on ATMs, ditches, Slurpees, corporate-jet owners, the Tea Party, Republicans, Japan’s earthquake, the Arab Spring, the Arab Summer, George Bush, and ‘fat-cat’ Wall Street something-or-others. The kitchen sink may be next. His numbers are tumbling in the critical battleground states of Pennsylvania, Virginia, Florida, North Carolina and New Hampshire – states he must win in 2012.”

August 29, 2011

WHY OBAMA Can’t Support A Real Jobs Program. “President Obama will not announce a real jobs program. His constituents would launch a primary challenge. Some might even call for his impeachment. For these reasons, we can expect pabulum and platitudes in his jobs speech, despite projections that high unemployment is about to become our ‘new normal.’”

Plus, Warren Buffett and the other rich anti-capitalists. Hey, once you’re on top you pull up the ladder — because then, crony-capitalism works better for you than the real thing, which has risks.

August 29, 2011

CORPORATE TOOLS: Masked Anonymous Protesters Aid Time Warner’s Bottom Line.

When members appear in public to protest censorship and what they view as corruption, they don a plastic mask of Guy Fawkes, the 17th-century Englishman who tried to blow up the Houses of Parliament.

Stark white, with blushed pink cheeks, a wide grin and a thin black mustache and goatee, the mask resonates with the hackers because it was worn by a rogue anarchist challenging an authoritarian government in “V for Vendetta,” the movie produced in 2006 by Warner Brothers.

What few people seem to know, though, is that Time Warner, one of the largest media companies in the world and parent of Warner Brothers, owns the rights to the image and is paid a licensing fee with the sale of each mask.

Anarchists have pretty much always been tools, though. (Well, the big-mouthed variety. As Robert Heinlein noted, the small-mouthed variety of anarchist is a very different breed). I love it that “anonymity” is misspelled in the photo, too.

August 29, 2011

MICKEY KAUS: The Top 10 Things Obama Should Have Done Differently.

August 29, 2011

“HOORAY FOR THE BABIES!”

August 29, 2011

THE GREAT POLITICAL MIGRATION: “Millions of people are, for good reason, abandoning big-government blue states for low-tax red ones. Michael Medved on the demographic shift shaking up the electoral map.” The bad news, of course, is that many of these immigrants are bringing with them the very same political attitudes that ruined the states they’re leaving, without appreciating the connection. We really need an education program for these people.

August 29, 2011

AT AMAZON, bestselling World War II history.

August 29, 2011

INLAND FLOODING DWARFS DIRECT EFFECTS OF IRENE: “So… who had Vermont in the ‘State Hardest Hit By Irene’ pool?”

August 29, 2011

THINGS YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED THIS WEEKEND, if you were out, you know, having a life or something:

New book on civic education is out. I’ve got a chapter in it, along with Sandra Day O’Connor, Alan Dershowitz, and other luminaries.

Arresting Uncle Omar. Obama’s answer to Billy Carter?

18 Seconds Of Raw Class Warfare. Not actually all that much class involved.

Feds sign off on Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner.

Dubious about “gunpowder lust.”

More on that shady Gibson Guitar raid.

The slow disappearance of the American working man.

How Steve Jobs made business cool again.

Operation “Fast and Fretless:” New Scandal at DoJ as Illegal Guitars End Up In Hands of Mexican Drug Lords. And somebody slipped auto-tune to the Colombians.

Court says charging people who record police with wiretapping is unconstitutional, and blocks qualified immunity.

Shocker: Green Jobs Programs Revealed As Fiscal Black Hole.

August 29, 2011

PROGRESS! Postal Service Paying Fewer Workers To Do Nothing.

August 29, 2011

THE HILL: For President Obama, More Storms On The Horizon. He’d better hope they turn out to be no worse than Irene. Plus, this shocker: “The president’s vacation turned out to be a political liability as he attracted criticism for relaxing in ritzy Martha’s Vineyard amid the economic downturn.” Yeah, who could have seen that coming?

August 29, 2011

REGIME UNCERTAINTY: Washington Examiner: Obama’s regulatory flood is drowning economic growth. “One doesn’t have to look far for an explanation of why the economy grew at an anemic 1 percent rate during the last quarter. Businesses large and small face more uncertainty today about the federal regulatory environment than at any point since the New Deal radically increased the role of the government in the nation’s economy.”

August 29, 2011

BUG TURNS NEWSPAPER into fuel.

August 29, 2011

GRETCHEN MORGENSON: The Rescue That Missed Main Street. It was never aimed at Main Street, of course.

Consider reading her book, Reckless Endangerment: How Outsized Ambition, Greed, and Corruption Led to Economic Armageddon. And note this take, by Walter Russell Mead.

Related: Obama Goes All Out For Dirty Banker Deal. When they’re saying that in Rolling Stone, I think the era of Hope And Change is definitely over.

Also: Gallup: Obama’s Disapproval Rating Hits An All-Time High. So far.

August 29, 2011

TODAY ONLY, Panasonic Lumix ZS10 14.1 MP Digital Camera with 16x Wide Angle Optical Image Stabilized Zoom and Built-In GPS for $249.99. I’ve had several Lumix cameras and they’ve been uniformly excellent.

August 29, 2011

TIM CARNEY: Is Barack’s Buddy Buffett Betting on Bank Bailout? Can crony capitalism conquer commonplace concerns about campaign closeness? “Buffett, who recently won plaudits for advocating higher taxes, has spent four years betting on bailouts and big government — and tilting the playing field in that direction by putting his money and prestige at the service of Barack Obama.”

August 29, 2011

CLAUDIA ROSETT: Tehran’s Ghost Fleet: A Chinese state-owned firm in Hong Kong has been helping Iranian ships get around U.S. sanctions.

August 29, 2011

CHRIS CHRISTIE: ‘No regrets’ on evacuations.

August 29, 2011

CHANGE: Space Station Could Be Abandoned In November: “Astronauts may need to temporarily withdraw from the International Space Station before the end of this year if Russia is unable to resume manned flights of its Soyuz rocket after a failed cargo launch last week, according to the NASA official in charge of the outpost. Despite a delivery of important logistics by the final space shuttle mission in July, safety concerns with landing Soyuz capsules in the middle of winter could force the space station to fly unmanned beginning in November, according to Michael Suffredini, NASA’s space station program manager.”

August 29, 2011

TRUTH-TELLING ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL:

One thing about the Republican presidential race: it promises to upgrade the quality of our public discourse. GOP candidates are saying things that need to be said, but usually aren’t; not only that, they are being picked up in the press, if only to be denounced.

The beauty is, they have to pick them up to denounce them. And they can’t resist denouncing them.

August 29, 2011

WEATHERVANE: Colin Powell Not So Hot On Obama Anymore.

August 28, 2011

I SAID EARLIER THAT OBAMA WAS LOSING SUPPORT EVERYWHERE BUT WITH BLACKS, BUT I WAS WRONG: African American support waning for Obama. “A Gallup poll last week found Obama’s poll numbers in the African American community down from its once stratospheric 95 percent approval early in his term, to a still-high, but notably lower 81 percent — tying his worst ever showing from earlier this year. . . . Observers say weaker support for Obama owes to a faltering economy that at 16 percent unemployment for blacks — nearly double the national average of nine percent — has hit the African American community especially hard.”

August 28, 2011

A PERFECT STORM OF HYPE: Politicians, the media and the Hurricane Irene apocalypse that never was.

Related: It Was A Cat 5 Media Event.

Plus, some history.

August 28, 2011

FOLLOW THE MONEY: Taken to Task: The Cult of Warren Buffett.

August 28, 2011

AT AMAZON, bestsellers in Science Fiction.

August 28, 2011

DICK CHENEY, FIGHTING FOR CIVIL RIGHTS: Cheney tells inside story of how he bucked administration on 2nd Amendment.

August 28, 2011

FUN? FAMILY FRIENDLY? WISCONSIN? “Labor Day parade organizers confirm that no Republicans will be allowed to participate in this year’s Labor Day Parade.”

Rage, rage, against the dying of the featherbed.

August 28, 2011

RICK PERRY CALLS SOCIAL SECURITY A PONZI SCHEME.

Well, I have heard Yale Law Professor John Langbein say that if a private entity did what Social Security has done, they’d all be in jail. So Perry’s right up there with Ivy League experts on the subject.

UPDATE: Prof. Stephen Clark writes:

Rick Perry: Tribune of the young?

Haberman thinks that Perry is in a bind. I’m not convinced.

Given the indisputable fact that his accusation has merit, pressing this point puts Obama in a bit of a bind: devise a counter argument – good luck – or demagogue it. Of course, the first instinct will be to demagogue it. But the hollowness of that response without a convincing counter argument won’t go unnoticed by the young I’ve met; the very same ones so enthusiastic in support of his ’08 candidacy. And if it scares the old folks, it won’t be because Perry is saying that he opposes Social Security or Medicare in principle; rather, that their security is at risk because the programs are fundamentally flawed.

Pretty brazen on Perry’s part. But it’s a tack that could only work in the current environment where even old folks look on with shock and awe at the incredible deficits and massive increase in the public debt since Obama took office.

Indeed.

August 28, 2011

DO TELL: Seems the White House is a Bit Touchy About the Vacation Topic.

August 28, 2011

CLAIRE BERLINSKI: The Diplomat Who Drew The Short Straw.

August 28, 2011

OUT NOW: Teaching America: The Case For Civic Education. I’ve got a chapter in it; other contributors include Sandra Day O’Connor, Sen. Jon Kyl, Alan Dershowitz, Michael Kazin, and Juan Williams. If the next generation doesn’t understand America, it won’t preserve America.

August 28, 2011

THAT’S BETTER THAN USING FOOD: Converting Steel Mill Flue Gases To Ethanol.

August 28, 2011

18 SECONDS OF RAW CLASS WARFARE: “It’s coming! Get ready! All you fucking tea-party-baggers. It’s coming. Get ready.”

August 28, 2011

SHOCKER: Green Jobs Revealed As Fiscal Black Hole. “Pipe dreams eventually are revealed for what they are – unrealistic, wishful thinking. It didn’t take long for Spain’s touted green-job revolution to be revealed as a financial disaster, siphoning taxpayer subsidies and destroying 2.2 real jobs for every green job created. Domestic green-job pipe dreams similarly drain U.S. taxpayers’ money into economic sink holes. The millions of so-called green jobs promised by President Barack Obama and other champions of taxpayer-subsidized energy schemes not only haven’t materialized, many that did, already are disappearing. It’s truly a bad sign for the green-job revolution when failure becomes obvious even to acolytes.”

August 28, 2011

JUST SO LONG AS IT DOESN’T MASTER ADMINISTRATIVE LAW BEFORE I RETIRE: Robot Teaches English As A Second Language.

August 28, 2011

LIKING RICK PERRY BASED ON HIS ENEMIES. Hey, they say “sharks” like it’s a bad thing.

August 28, 2011

MARK STEYN: The West has incentivized non-productivity on an industrial scale.

August 28, 2011

CHANGE: Social Media And Biometric Software Could Make Future Undercover Policing Impossible.

August 28, 2011

ASKING THE IMPORTANT QUESTIONS: Where’s The Facebook For Old People?

August 28, 2011

RAND SIMBERG: It’s not nice to anthropomorphize Mother Nature.

Twice this morning on ABC I heard the storm referred to as having emotions. “The ire of Irene,” (OK, I see the alliterary appeal) and “the wrath of the storm.”

Folks, don’t anthropomorphize rotational fluid dynamics. The storm didn’t really have it in for anyone, honest. Besides, it hates when you do that.

Indeed.

August 28, 2011

WILL THE IPHONE 5 WORK ON ANY CELLULAR NETWORK? “Combine these rumors with reports that Apple will include radios for both the major cell network technologies (i.e., CDMA and GSM) and you’ve got what looks like a major disruption in the making. Apple could be planning a smartphone that works equally well on any carrier network. I can only imagine how nervous AT&T and Verizon must be.” That would be cool.

August 28, 2011

EUGENE VOLOKH: Federal Government Prosecuting Man for Writing Many Insulting Tweets and Blog Posts About Religious Leader. They told me if I voted for John McCain, the federal government would go after people who taunted religious leaders. And they were right!

Related: Anti-”bullying” language used to attack critics of public official.

August 28, 2011

ARRESTING Uncle Omar. “I spoke to Framingham Public Information Officer Lieutenant Delaney who told me that when Onyango Obama was asked at booking if he wanted to make a telephone call to arrange for bail, the Kenyan immigrant replied: ‘I think I will call the White House.’” So he’s sort of Billy Carter to Obama’s Jimmy here?

August 28, 2011

IN THE MAIL: Shooting from the Lip: The Life of Senator Al Simpson.

August 28, 2011

CHERRY-PICKING: ESPN’s Double Standard On Its Personalities’ Political Tweets. Is it just me, or has the sports world somehow become the most wussy-PC sector of media?

August 28, 2011

MARK WARNER: $4T in debt cuts shouldn’t be an ‘ultimate heavy lift.’

Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) is urging the bipartisan “supercommittee” tasked with deficit cuts to pursue a deal in the $4 trillion range.

Warner, a centrist Democrat, used an interview with Bloomberg to urge the panel to “go big, go bold” when they negotiate this fall.

“We’re not going to solve the problem overnight, but, you know, a 10-year plan to reduce $4 trillion in debt should not be the kind of ultimate heavy lift. You know, if we don’t step up and do that, then I don’t think we are doing our country a service,” Warner said on the program “Political Capital” airing this weekend.

Even that’s barely a beginning.

August 28, 2011

POLITICO: Poll: Obama loses ground with white voters, women, liberals. He’s losing ground with just about everybody except blacks.

August 28, 2011

FRANK J. FLEMING: Comparing Obama’s Performance in Office with that of a Sack of Hammers. “Hint: It’s not even close. . . . This isn’t to say that Obama is dumber than a sack of hammers — a ridiculous assertion — it’s just to say that he’s much worse at being a president than one.”

August 28, 2011

AT AMAZON, Today Only: 50% off Men’s Hoodies And Sweatshirts. Hey, the cold weather’s coming. When I got out of the pool yesterday morning, I was actually slightly chilly.

August 28, 2011

IN A HURRICANE, CASH IS KING:

Banks across New York City are making provisions so people will be able to get hard currency Sunday and Monday, even if Hurricane Irene knocks power out and floods branches.

One of the enduring lessons from the hurricanes of 2005 is that cash is crucial in a storm zone for basic staples, yet often difficult to come by. After Katrina, for example, ATMs across New Orleans simply did not work.

With that in mind, people scrambled to ATMs on Friday and Saturday morning across New York and New Jersey, often withdrawing hundreds of dollars to prepare.

Keep some cash — in small bills, mostly — in your disaster kit.

August 28, 2011

FROM MEGAN MCARDLE, a recipe for Salmon Tartare.

August 28, 2011

JAMES Q. WILSON: CRIME AND THE GREAT RECESSION. Jobs have fled, lawbreaking hasn’t risen—and criminologists are scratching their heads.

I credit Internet porn and videogames. Is there anything they can’t do?

August 28, 2011

ROGER KIMBALL: More irenic thoughts, or Obama as Dukakis.

A friend with a sense of humor sent me this reassuring story: “Obama Takes Charge at Hurricane Center.” “Now you can sleep well tonight,” he said. Hardly that. I mean really: does he look like a man who has a clue about what to do? Ponder the official NOAA name plate emblazoned with “Barack Obama President of the United States.” Why does that seem ridiculous? After all, he isthe President of the United States. Maybe it’s because it put me in mind of that iconic image of Mike Dukakis in his tank. Anyway, if it failed to be reassuring, it did introduce a welcome moment of levity.

Funny how often people with no sense of humor manage to do that.

UPDATE: From Skip Press on Facebook: “Funny how Hurricane Irene was slowing down, then Obama took over the hurricane center and it sped up.” He’s got the magic touch!

Meanwhile, I note that at least Dukakis looked like he was having fun in the tank.