Thursday, May 22, 2014

Timothy Geithner for Wonks

Once again, Jon Stewart makes "real" journalists look like uneducated chumps.

Here's a link to a 42-minute interview Stewart had with former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. (We couldn't get the embed to work.) I would say my attitude toward Geithner is about 51% positive. There's a lot about Stewart's approach to be critical of, like his tendency to cut off Geithner whenever he's trying to make a substantive point. But I've never seen a major media newsman as well informed and comfortable with talking about derivatives as Stewart is here.

I don't recommend this video if you're not particularly interested in the subject matter, but if you are, I think you'll find it entertaining.

The link is here.

The News Hour, India Style

While searching for results of the Idaho gubernatorial debate the other day, we inexplicably found ourselves directed to a link to an Indian program called News Hour (obviously not the venerable MacNeill-Lehrer offering). The segment was a debate concerning remarks the Pakistani Interior Minister had made about Norendra Modi, the newly elected Prime Minister of India, and Modi's remarks about a criminal Pakistan is harboring named Dawood Ibrahim.

When I was in junior high school, my mother subscribed to a weekly, 8-page news summary called India News (I think). I can't remember the background on how she came across it, but I'm certain that the subscription was intended to give my brother(s) and me a window to a different world. It certainly did. I read it occasionally, but not often enough to make sense of the cricket stories.

Since I was later a PolySci major, with some interest in international governments, and with this "deep" background in Indian politics, when the hour-long News Hour debate showed up, I thought, "Sure, why not?"

And wow.

Just see for yourself. Try to watch five minutes of it. It starts out slowly. The first person to talk is the moderator, for the love of Pete.

So I was pretty delighted to find that the Colbert Report's Jason Jones had discovered the state of Indian journalism, too, and filed this report (start it at 5 minutes, unless you want to watch the whole show).

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Idaho GOP

In reference to an earlier post about the Idaho GOP gubernatorial debate, the sentient reader might wonder how it came to be that two "non-normal" persons were included in the debate. It was, depending on how you look at it, a generous gesture of democratization by Idaho Governor Butch Otter, a brilliant political move by the governor, or a craven political move by a governor who had no respect for the voters in his state.

The background is that state Senator Russ Fulcher is going after two-term Governor Otter, on the basis that Otter is just not Tea Party enough, and challenged him to a debate. Otter agreed to the debate on the condition that the two other men who had qualified for the ballot be included, thus reducing by half the amount of time Fulcher would have to attack him.

The Idaho primary is today (Tuesday, May 20). It will be interesting to see what effect the exposure for Messrs. Harley Brown and Walt Bayes will have on the outcome. Stay tuned.

Another Reason to be Glad You Live in Minnesota

Earlier this Spring, we had the spectacle of an armed mob pointing guns at, and otherwise threatening, Bureau of Land Management employees in Bunkerville, Nevada.

The craziness is continuing in Texas, where a group calling itself Open Carry Texas likes to terrorize people in fast food restaurants. They do this by showing up en masse brandishing military weaponry it is allegedly their Constitutional right to carry anywhere they wish. When they showed up at a Jack-in-the-Box, Fort Worth police said, the store employees "locked themselves inside a freezer for protection out of fear the rifle-carrying men would rob them."

THAT was such a good time for Open Carry Texas that they followed the visit up a few days later with a group trip to their local Chipotle. Make sure you scroll down on the link to that one, for pictures of our Constitutional scholars.

Friday, May 16, 2014

The GOP: Always Good for a Laugh

Don't miss the video of Wednesday night's GOP gubernatorial candidate debate. For a taste, here are the final five minutes, via Steve Benen:

Check it out here.

My money's on Harley Brown.