Saturday Open Thread

Tiger double bogied the first hole today in the third round of The Masters. You can watch the play at Amen Corner and 15 and 16 at the link. TV coverage starts at 3:30 pm EST.

This is an Open Thread.

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    Good; the D.C. internship (none / 0) (#2)
    by Cream City on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 01:05:02 PM EST
    organization has had some problems.

    For restaurants, for great food at good prices as well as great people-watching, we had fun in Soho.  The best prices and some of the best food were in the tiny basement restaurants, especially a Cuban one.  As for Indian, you'll have lots of choices!

    East Sixth Street (none / 0) (#3)
    by squeaky on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 01:23:14 PM EST
    Between 1st and 2nd ave are where all the Indian restaurants are in Manhattan. These are moderately to low priced. Some say Brick Lane is the best. It has been awhile since I have eaten Indian food, so I am not up to date.

    If you are a serious foodie the best place to explore is Jackson Heights, Queens. Great thai and indian food there. That is where the largest Indian community is. The most successful restaurants there eventually move to Manhattan.

    Manhattan is awesome (none / 0) (#4)
    by andgarden on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 01:27:42 PM EST
    Sadly, I don't eat out often enough to have a good map of the excellent dives. Though I think there are many people are who do. I'm sure you'll get some good responses.

    I got tanked in both leagues yesterday also (none / 0) (#5)
    by nycstray on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 01:41:04 PM EST
    geeze, the whole point of having 2 teams is that at least one should do a decent job! I've got 3 pitchers on one team starting today, so I'm kind of afraid to check in and see what's going on . . .

    I second east 6th st for Indian food :)

    Two Teams (none / 0) (#47)
    by cal1942 on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 11:58:10 PM EST
    one lose, one win ...

    Isn't that something like a hedge fund?


    When I do baseball . . . (none / 0) (#49)
    by nycstray on Sun Apr 12, 2009 at 12:09:03 AM EST
    last couple years, yes. Football, heh, not so much :) Yes, you are communicating with the league CHAMP (second consecutive year!)! And 2nd in the other league, meaning I got to play though to the final game. Works for me! And I get free t-shirts ta boot!

    In one league, I'm playing against a pitcher heavy team, in another, a hitter heavy. Silly me went for balance . . . . here's hoping for balance in the long haul :)


    If you want unique (none / 0) (#6)
    by Steve M on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 01:42:12 PM EST
    try Mingala on East 7th for Burmese food.  Even when I lived in Chicago I was never able to find Burmese cuisine, it's very rare!

    Info pls-Are transcripts of WH sponsored forums (none / 0) (#7)
    by jawbone on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 01:45:09 PM EST
    required by law? If so, are they available to publlic?

    I'm asking bcz there was a WH Health Care Systems Forum on Wednesday, April 8, sponsored by the administration and chaired by Nancy DeParle. I posted about it today at Corrente.

    I found the WH "live blog,"* by Rebecca Adelman, who Lambert posted about at Corrente, where he noted that she left out the appearance, comments and questions by the PNHP single payer proponent.

    While watching the C-Span rebroadcast of the Wed. forum today, I was struck by a forceful recommendation for universal care similar to Australia's by one of the participants. The "live blog" left out any mention of that and the participant's noting that no one in Australia is forced into bankruptcy by health care expenses and that everyone is covered from in utero (provided the mother seeks care) to end of life.

    I can't find a transcript, so I wondered if the government is requried to create and maintain such records of public meetings. Given that the WH "live blogger" tends to leave out things which do not support the WH approach and thus is incomplete, I was concerned about the ongoing historical record as well as misleading the public.  

    I've done my share of live blogging, and I know not everything can be included. I'd have to really improve my typing speed. And I emphasized the participant's remarks concerning universal care and single player approach, but if I'd spent a bit more time on editing my post, I could have included a bit more on the poverty issue covered. (Well, with a better memory I'd have done it while typing....) I did have at least a reference to it. But the WH "live blogger" referencing single payer, universal care? No.

    Thanks for any input. I'd particularly like to know of any transcript; so far, can't find one.

    *I use the quotes bcz, to me, live blogging while deliberately leaving out inconvenient facts is not a good example of blogger ethics;; as Atrios might say, this calls for a blogger ethics panel.

    Drat. Typos. Single payer, not single player. Heh. (none / 0) (#9)
    by jawbone on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 01:47:37 PM EST
    Bet there more. Bad proofreader!

    No requirement (none / 0) (#15)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:31:55 PM EST
    as far as I know.  I actually think your best bet is to just call the White House switchboard and ask.

    My guess is that if they do make a transcript, it's likely to take them a while to get done.


    Can't really help you with the Indian... (none / 0) (#8)
    by kdog on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 01:45:20 PM EST
    but Wo-Hop on Mott St. in Chinatown has the bomb Chinese, and make sure you get a recession special from Gray's Papaya on 6th ave in the Village for kick-arse hot dogs.

    If you venture out of Manhattan, hit Sallys on Third Ave. in Brooklyn for the best Lebanese food I've found in NY.  

    I might just try the Lebanese place (none / 0) (#10)
    by andgarden on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 01:51:25 PM EST
    I've not found my New York Maroush.

    My dad and his brothers... (none / 0) (#12)
    by kdog on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:19:19 PM EST
    are used to the real-deal, their maternal grandparents were born in Lebanon...its the only place they go.  Small little restaurant, but so so good.

    Awesome kibbeh nayyeh if you get down with the raw.  Here's the website.


    Excellent (none / 0) (#16)
    by andgarden on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:33:30 PM EST

    There is a lesson in this (none / 0) (#11)
    by Wile ECoyote on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:16:32 PM EST
    link somewhere.  Something about waiting on the gov't to fix something.

    That is awesome... (none / 0) (#18)
    by kdog on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:36:33 PM EST
    and reassuring...I think the lesson is clear Wile.  Community-based solutions to community problems...I love it.

    I think you'll find many places where (none / 0) (#19)
    by Inspector Gadget on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:42:33 PM EST
    the people are putting their energy into taking care of business and not letting outrage zap them of their survival abilities.

    We're getting several calls a day from people who are starting their own businesses after they've been laid off. The thought that the gov't has no control we don't give them is rapidly taking hold. We can weaken them without having to march the streets in huge protest rallies.


    Yes we can.... (none / 0) (#20)
    by kdog on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:46:52 PM EST
    and weaken the banking/finance/insurance cartel as well, we have that ability, the only question is do we have the will to excercise it.

    Yes, and I'm seeing evidence (none / 0) (#37)
    by Inspector Gadget on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 08:30:25 PM EST
    we can and we will. The true babyboomers are people of extraordinary skill. (Not saying others aren't! These are the ones who were on the front line when retirement blew up in their faces.) The generation that marched against the Viet Nam War has taken matters into their own hands before, and is doing it again. I met a person just this morning who agrees with me that there is a brilliant silver lining in this.

    With the literally hundreds of billions of dollars (none / 0) (#13)
    by of1000Kings on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:21:03 PM EST
    in losses from all the Ponzi-scheme hedge funds that have come out with the fall of the Street has anyone heard of any talk about finally regulating hedge funds?

    the hedge funds have to take some of the blame for our crisis (along with the major banks and investment banks) and it seems like it's an area that has eluded regulation for some time...

    then again, as we're learning now with banks like Indy, regulators can be just as fraudulent as banks and hedge fund managers...

    These Hedge Fund Managers (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by cpa1 on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 07:44:23 PM EST
    were able to do something that I think is unconstitutional.  They have a separate tax bracket than the rest of us have.  I thought you couldn't do that, as it was talked about for the AIG employees who kept their bonuses.  They wanted them to pay more but it was unconstitutional.

    Hedge fund managers pay at a rate of 15%.  Do any of you here pay that low a rate?  I don't.  In fact, my rate is more than 3 times that rate because I am self employed.  I guess the hedge fund managers are more important than all the self employed professionals and entrepreneurs.  It's who you know, not your value to the country.  Furthermore, with state tax, sales tax and utilities I and many others are paying 70%, leaving 30% for rent, medical, food, insurance, auto and everything else.  That is one reason why the wealthy need to pay a lot more taxes.


    That's GOT to go (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 08:15:06 PM EST
    That hedge fund tax rate crapola.

    I suspect you're like me, just furious when I hear all these GOPers particularly going on and on and on about the holiness and majesty of small business, and then I get just killed on my taxes.


    I've slowly started to come around (none / 0) (#44)
    by of1000Kings on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 11:33:15 PM EST
    to a flat tax rate...something around 20-25%....

    the small businesses would pay less and the elite would probably pay more (considering I've seen a ton of reports that the top percentage of earners in America pay way less in percentage than your average hard-working blue-collar)

    be interested in seeing how the numbers would play out overall considering this...

    may have to try out that googley thingy...


    Yep.... (none / 0) (#14)
    by kdog on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:26:51 PM EST
    regulators that are members of the same country club as the regulatees ain't workin' out so well...we the people would probably be best served to not play the ponzi game at all and figure out a way to be able to retire without the help of the shady brigade.  No small task I know, retirement is a relatively new phenomenon for non-royalty.

    I don't think the people (none / 0) (#22)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:50:17 PM EST
    at Indymac think their regulators belong to their country club.

    Heh (none / 0) (#23)
    by Steve M on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 03:04:42 PM EST
    Yeah, those IndyMac regulators weren't chummy with the industry at all!

    Well, I was referring to the (none / 0) (#34)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 08:10:44 PM EST
    big hoo-hah with the FDIC takeover, but maybe they don't count as "regulators."

    Thanks (none / 0) (#48)
    by cal1942 on Sun Apr 12, 2009 at 12:08:30 AM EST
    for the link Steve M

    Several proposals for (none / 0) (#17)
    by KeysDan on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:34:27 PM EST
    regulation and changes in tax liabilities.  Hedge Fund guys do not like them much, although some efforts by their lobbyists to make changes that some say are attempts to co-opt.  

    Dunno how many (none / 0) (#21)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 02:48:58 PM EST
    hedge funds are actually literally Ponzi schemes ala Bernie Madoff, but yes, hedge funds are due for a couple of things. One is transparency and reporting requirements to the SEC so it can monitor what they're doing.  Second is that very large ones deemed to be potential "systemic risks," as revealed by the reporting, will be able to be seized by regulators like banks if they get into trouble, if the proposed new rules are adopted.  See this piece from Bloomberg.

    If you're concerned about hedge funds in general, you might want to have a look at this recent report in Marketwatch, which says the ones that haven't gone out of business entirely have apparently mostly been stabilized.

    You could also try Googling.


    Hedge funds per se (5.00 / 2) (#38)
    by NYShooter on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 09:16:47 PM EST
    are fine; they finance many of the innovative businesses too risky even for v.c.,s.

    The problem with hedge funds is the same as with any business; they are allowed to grow too big. Then, instead of investing in a business, or industry, they can control it. Their interest then is not in the company or industry doing well, or selling short if they think its going to do poorly, but in guaranteeing it does what they want it to do. The fundamentals of  business mean nothing to them; the only thing that matters is the movement of the stock price.

    We've all heard of the "Bear Runs," concocted by hedge funds, over the past couple of decades. This is where several hedge funds team together, pick out a company to be their victim, place their short bets, and then sell the company short....into oblivion.

    What Reagan has wrought, "Get Government off our Backs," was exctly what the banks, corporations, and hedge funds wanted: get the sheriff out of Dodge City, so the crooks could steal, rob, cheat, and plunder the wealth created by millions of American workers.

    They got what they wanted, and we, the victims, elected a man that will see to it that nothing changes.


    I think the jury is still out (none / 0) (#42)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 10:18:02 PM EST
    on your last sentence, but otherwise I agree entirely.  Long Term Capital Management, anyone?  Like everything else in the financial system, they have to be reined in.

    I am viscerally disgusted by the concept of simply making money off of money, but as long as we're in a relentlessly capitalist system, hedge funds have their place in the scheme of things.  Yech.


    I'm with you (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by NYShooter on Sun Apr 12, 2009 at 07:22:14 AM EST
    And I promise that This NY Agnostic will pray that I am wrong.

    Unfortunately, there is scant evidence that I am. Everything that I've seen so far indicates that Obama, rather than use this calamity to implement fundamental "change" (remember that term?)  to Wall Street, has been persuaded by the very people who fought to create the monster that brought us down that real change isn't necessary. It seems they have capitalized on Obama's inexperience, naiveté, and Wall Street Envy, to convince him that the monster was fine, albeit a little over-exuberant.

    If you read the history of the creation of our monster, one name stands front and center as the most vociferous voice for deregulation, lower capital requirements, and cross-pollination of financial businesses..........Larry Summers.


    And now that "top talent" (none / 0) (#54)
    by BernieO on Sun Apr 12, 2009 at 07:38:13 AM EST
    is moving from the big investment banks that will be regulated to smaller institutions that will not be closely watched according to the NY Times.

    This is a replay of what happened after Enron's collapse. According to 60 Minutes Enron's "top talent" was snapped up by Wall Street. These guys proceeded to teach Wall Street how to manipulate energy prices and this accounted for much of the run up in last year's gasoline prices.

    Will we ever learn from our mistakes the way the Depression Generation did?


    Superb Comment (none / 0) (#50)
    by cal1942 on Sun Apr 12, 2009 at 12:11:30 AM EST

    Tiger's got enough... (none / 0) (#24)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 04:10:43 PM EST
    ...green jackets.  I'm rooting for the old man, Kenny Perry.  

    Although I do love watching Tiger's little temper tantrums out on the course--reminds me of me.

    Angel Carrera....one back. (none / 0) (#25)
    by oldpro on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 05:02:29 PM EST
    Even when Tiger's having a bad day, he's a marvel.  I wouldn't call those modest expressions of disgust and frustration "temper tantrums."  Yours?  Maybe!

    Phil and Tiger in at 4 under...

    Sunshine on the bay today.  You still got snow?


    I said "little"! (none / 0) (#28)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 05:45:20 PM EST
    My clubs and balls don't behave as well as Tiger's, so I have a legitimate reason to be a touch ill-tempered out on the course.

    Looks like its going to be an exciting finish tomorrow with lots of folks still having a shot.

    The snow is long gone, but there's probably at day or two more of it lurking in the coming days.  Yesterday we had a very marine-like layer most of the day that burnt off right out when the first pitch of season was thrown at Coors Field.  

    Today is cloudy and windy, but no moisture as yet.  Good day for getting some cleaning done.


    Cleaning! Yeah, me too. (none / 0) (#31)
    by oldpro on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 07:17:30 PM EST
    My kid is coming over for Easter brunch tomorrow.  Gotta keep up appearances so he doesn't call 'the home' and make my reservation.

    If you want to see a treat and you get the golf (none / 0) (#33)
    by cpa1 on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 07:54:15 PM EST
    channel, watch it on Monday Nights to see Hank Haney, Tiger's swing coach, not the "Zoot Suit Magic" kind of swing, trying to straighten out Charles Barkley's golf swing.  He pauses on the down swing and dips his head and body about a foot.  It is hysterical and yet poignant.  Charles is really trying so hard and he's a really good guy.

    Lexington Ave in the low 20s. (none / 0) (#26)
    by scribe on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 05:28:34 PM EST
    There's a reason Murray Hill has gained the additional nickname "Curry Hill".

    A prediction (none / 0) (#30)
    by CoralGables on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 06:57:27 PM EST
    There will be a new resident at the White House Easter Morning, with Sasha And Malia introducing their new dog to the world on Monday at the Annual Easter Egg Roll thereby bumping the Somali Pirates off the front page for a day.

    Go Portuguese Water Dogs! (none / 0) (#36)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 08:17:27 PM EST
    I've never really known one, but I met one once and thought he was just wonderful.

    I heard they're getting a sort of rescue, a dog that had been adopted out as a puppy but was given back for some reason and is now homeless.

    They better put a fence up around that veg garden...


    I think the fence is in. (none / 0) (#39)
    by nycstray on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 09:37:44 PM EST
    thought I saw one in the latest batch of garden photos.

    PWDs are pretty cool dogs from what I understand/know about them. If they are getting one that was returned to a breeder, that's great. Shows exactly what a responsible breeder does and why we rarely see their dogs in shelters. If they do land there on the off chance, many are chipped and make it safely back to either owner or breeder. So it's not a puppy sized puppy? This could be good also :) They get props from me on responsible searching/preparing for a dog and the garden. She was actually out there with the kids for the first planting and got dirty :)

    Thank goodness they didn't go with a doodle! PWD are much harder to exploit as a trend and have a more reliable history as far as allergies go. If the pup is out of puppy hair stage, even better.


    8 months old (none / 0) (#40)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 10:11:34 PM EST
    I think I heard?  Anyway, as you say, out of raw puppy stage, which in some ways is too bad for the kids because puppies are incredibly neat and impossible not to bond with intensely right away. But if that's easier on the allergies, sounds like they found exactly the right dog as long as the personality is a good fit.

    What's a "doodle"?  Is that some cross-breed with a poodle?  Poodles I have a little more experience with and they're my all-time absolute favorite dog (as long as the poodle in question hasn't been ruined by bad breeding or inbreeding, as so many have been).

    As for the garden, I absolutely LOVE what she's been doing with that, and particularly the sort of adopted elementary school class that's assisting from time to time.  It was funny to see her all decked out in really inappropriate duds the first time and not really able to cope with breaking up the tough turf on that lawn, but the spirit and the intention are just fantastic, I think.

    I'm not a big fan of her husband, but as far as I'm concerned, Michelle just rocks, and having her as first lady just breaks so many molds all at once, you can't even count them.


    8 months is a great age (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by nycstray on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 11:42:53 PM EST
    still a puppy, but has started to grow a bit of a brain. Bonding shouldn't be a prob as they will soon see those puppy "things" that make them so cute. Puppies are only "puppies" for such a short time visually. In the brain dept, whole 'nother issue :) Between 8mos and 1.5 yrs are the most common time for dogs to be dumped at shelters, so another good example if everything works out. So many "teenage" dogs in shelters and also some with breeders.

    Doodles are poodle crosses bred to be "hypo-allergenic". Unfortunately, the Golden and Lab/poodle crosses just set fire to a new designer "hypo-allergenic" BYB/Puppymill trend. There may be some validity to it with the origins and those that have been crossing and documenting, but we all know what happens with trendy things . . .  Plus Poodles are incredibly smart/trainable dogs and could easily be assistant dogs, which was the "reasoning" behind the cross. "Hypo-allergenic" guide/assistant dogs. Sadly, it's a great marketing feature and they can breed them in all sizes and sell oodles of doodles . . . . Puppymill heaven$$$$$$$

    I think MO is pretty good. I always liked her better than her hubby. But I think it's because she actually seems to have put some elbow grease into life and has "grit". I'm just attracted to that. Plus she's smart and approaches things in a well thought out manner. I think her first garden experience opened her eyes, lol!~ next round shows that she def got a clue and wasn't afraid to dig in. I always got that she had clued into food issues and was hoping she would influence him in his decisions.(I still think she's new at it, but has a good capacity to learn. The woman isn't dumb and has drive/passion) This garden is bigger than many people think, especially if she stays involved, as I think she could make a bigger difference on our food behind the scenes. He never addressed food safety beyond surface yadda yadda, but now we have the chemical AG folks writing her saying she should use chemicals on her garden, lol!~ methinks what's happening in Ag may get some much needed behind the headlines tweaking . . . . We do have a few people leaning or for our side that he's appointed over in the USDA area. As the garden grows, so hopefully does healthy food legislation :) And remember, she got interested in food because the oldest daughter was starting to go on the overweight end, according to their doctor. An issue that hits close to their home is good for all of us when someone like her has a vested interest ;) And I should say, like her is smart, experienced, not afraid to dig in and say something. Even better that she's FL.

    I may not get what I want out of this admin on many issues, but I sure as heck will be happy about some of the "smaller" issues getting some change. Some of it we expect from a Dem (women's issues, hopefully), but if we actually get some Ag, happy dance from me. If they set a good example in the pet area (I attribute this to MO), another happy dance. And I do think she will set a good example as FL even if just based on her realness to herself, if that makes sense. I may not always agree with them, but I have a feeling she will make me happier than he does ;)


    The puppy's name is Bo. (none / 0) (#51)
    by caseyOR on Sun Apr 12, 2009 at 12:34:09 AM EST
    WaPo is now reporting that the new WH puppy is, indeed, a portuguese water dog. Malia and Sasha have named the pup "Bo."

    Bo, who is 6 months old, is a gift to the girls from Teddy Kennedy.


    Thanks! (none / 0) (#52)
    by nycstray on Sun Apr 12, 2009 at 12:58:16 AM EST
    not only for the info, but because the link has a pic gallery which has pic #4 with B Clinton holding Socks and Buddy is in the pic also. Nice casual photo. Socks was def a good First Cat. That kitty could hang with the best :)

    Good info on the new first dog. 6 mos is a good age also. So many puppies/kittens get passed over in shelters because they aren't 8-10 wks old. That pup is CUTE! And they have a mentor on the breed with Teddy and family. Always a good idea. Even though the pup has had some training, methinks they are going to have their hands full, lol!~

    I can't tell you how relieved I am they went with a PWD over a Doodle. I now hope to see photos of MO and the kids with an active dog (being active with the dog!) and continuation of the garden :)


    NY Times: The flight of talent (none / 0) (#41)
    by Green26 on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 10:17:30 PM EST
    to non-TARP companies is excelerating.

    While Dodd and Congress didn't realize what they were doing with the $500,000 executive comp cap, they have managed to change Wall St in a big way.

    Way to chase off the top talent, Congress. Talk about incompetence and in over their head.


    We see this totally different (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by CoralGables on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 11:24:49 PM EST
    I see people that ran a company into the ground leaving in an attempt to be paid more, so once again they can show folks how they run companies into the ground for profit.

    ya, if that's the best and the brightest (5.00 / 2) (#45)
    by of1000Kings on Sat Apr 11, 2009 at 11:36:18 PM EST
    then maybe the companies are better off without them...

    these guys are extremely short-sighted aren't they...doesn't seem like that's a good trait for being in the financing industry...but maybe it is for the paycheck (just not for the country)...


    They need to be banned from ever working (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by Inspector Gadget on Sun Apr 12, 2009 at 12:01:34 PM EST
    in the financial industry again. Something like being disbarred. They may actually being leaving their jobs in hopes the focus on what they did shifts to someone else and they won't be tried for any of the fraud and swindling they did.