Monday Night Open Thread

A new season of Dancing With the Stars begins. We don't have Bristol to kick around any more. Unfortunately for viewers, pro dancer Derek Hough is taking the season off. I'll be mildly curious to see how Kirstie Allie and Sugar Ray Leonard do. Otherwise, I'm not too interested. I'm going to watch The Triangle Waist Fire instead.

Here's an open thread, all topics welcome.

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    My sweet Claire (5.00 / 3) (#20)
    by MO Blue on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 10:28:47 AM EST
    I've Convinced My Husband 'To Sell The D@mn Plane'

    During a conference call with reporters, the Missouri Democrat took responsibility for the failure to pay personal property taxes from 2007 to 2010, insisting it was an unintentional oversight and that monthly sales taxes have been paid on the plane for several years.
    McCaskill's acknowledgment Monday was the latest of several politically embarrassing revelations about her use of private airplanes. She previously paid the U.S. Treasury $88,000 to cover flight costs. She later acknowledged that one of those 89 trips was for political purposes - when McCaskill traveled from St. Louis to Hannibal for a Democratic conference.

    Poor baby, as a previous auditor for the State of Missouri, how was she expected to understand all these financial things. Bless her heart.

    Hey Claire, time for you to write some more letters about fiscal responsibility. Maybe, you can get together with Alan Simpson and write about all of us people on SS wanting a "free lunch."

    Your sweet Claire (5.00 / 0) (#55)
    by jbindc on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 04:32:18 PM EST
    is having more problems with the plane.  Seems she raised the issue against her opponent in 2004:

    More than six years ago, Claire McCaskill was embroiled in another fight over the political use of airplanes -- except in that case, she was raising the issue against her opponent.

    During the crescendo of her primary challenge to Gov. Bob Holden in July 2004, then-state auditor McCaskill ran an ad showing an airplane circling around the outline of Missouri, slamming the governor for "taking over 300 taxpayer funded trips on the state airplane."

    According to the Associated Press, McCaskill pointed to news accounts that reported Holden flying to events like the NCAA women's basketball tournament in St. Louis and to a public speaking specialist in Kansas City as evidence as the "kind of things that make taxpayers raise their eyebrows."

    I hate karma, don't you?


    Here's an interesting... (none / 0) (#1)
    by desertswine on Mon Mar 21, 2011 at 08:36:37 PM EST
    bit of sychronicity...

    100 Years Ago The First Aerial Bomb Lands In Libya

    check out that amazing airplane

    `Unaffordable underinsurance.' (none / 0) (#2)
    by MO Blue on Mon Mar 21, 2011 at 08:44:46 PM EST
    Premiums are rising and coverage is shrinking a new norm is taking hold in America: `Unaffordable underinsurance.'  This month, the number of waivers granted to the Obama health law broke 1,000 protecting inadequate insurance plans. The expansion of health insurance to the uninsured is becoming a mirage. The Obama administration has told states they could reduce the number of people covered by Medicaid as well as reduce the services provided....

    "'Unaffordable underinsurance' is rapidly becoming the new standard in the United States."  The trend in health insurance is rising premiums and shrinking coverage for many Americans who get their coverage at work as well as on the individual insurance market.

    ...While some hope the Obama health law will slow premium hikes, Claudia Fegan, MD of Physicians for a National Health Program writes under the Obama heath law "sudden premium hikes are still possible and, in my opinion, quite likely under the new law."

    Underinsurance, requiring Americans to pay more of the cost of health care, may become the norm because of the 2010 law. The new law will hasten the current trend toward underinsurance as plans where patients pay an average of 40% of their health care bills qualify to fulfill the employers' obligations to provide coverage rather than pay an assessment. Massachusetts, the model on which the Obama reforms are based, recently found that medical bankruptcies have not decreased with the new law.  The lesson - it is not just health insurance, but the quality of the insurance that matters. After deriding merely adequate insurance as Cadillac Plans," the Obama administration is showing support for high deductibility plans with large out of pocket costs that do not provide financial or health security. link

    As opposed to (none / 0) (#3)
    by getoffamycloud10 on Mon Mar 21, 2011 at 09:41:09 PM EST
    the sharp, sudden rate hikes the insurance slugs haven't been giving us over the past 20 years as the free market worked its magic to not only keep costs down, but actually shrink them.

    Leave us not forget just how bad the status quo is.

    As weak as it is, there'd be no healthcare reform legislation if the existing system worked for all parties concerned.

    It doesn't. It never did. It never will.

    Eyes on the prize.

    IMO with the health insurance legislation (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by MO Blue on Mon Mar 21, 2011 at 10:06:21 PM EST
    we are receiving the booby prize.

    The status quo is the cost of health care in the U.S. is 2 - 3 times more and prescription drugs are 35% - 50% more than other countries, millions of people are without health care and millions more who have health insurance are underinsured and still cannot afford health care.

    After passing the health insurance legislation the cost of health care in the U.S. will be at least 2 - 3 times more and prescription drugs 35% - 50% more than other countries, millions of people will still be without health care and millions more who have mandated health insurance will be underinsured and still not able to afford health care. The legislation will force the elimination of good health care coverage through application of the excise tax and drive down the average actuarial value from the current average value of 80% to 60%. Basically mandated junk insurance which will make it even less likely that many people will be able to afford actual health care.

    it is not just health insurance, but the quality of the insurance that matters

    In my not-so-humble opinion, as long (5.00 / 3) (#15)
    by Anne on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 09:43:15 AM EST
    as the focus is on insurance, we are going to keep getting farther and farther away from what people really want: health CARE they can afford.

    Affordable CARE should have been the starting point for the debate and discussion, and if it had been, that discussion would have led, I believe, to the realization that insurance has been - and is - more the problem than the solution.  And that's exactly why single-payer had to come off the table on Day One - not because it wasn't uniquely American enough, and not because it's too hard to do, but because it would have sounded the death knell for the health insurance industry as we know it.

    The dishonesty, though, of not even being able to have a discussion about it in the Congress, of actually arresting single-payer experts who just wanted to be heard on the subject, of continuing to represent the entire exercise as being in the best interests of the people, just asounds me.  

    And with lots of lead time between now and 2014, the insurance companies are showing us exactly what we already knew they were; we're paying more and we're getting less - oh, wait - is that the "uniquely American" part of this?

    I'm pretty sure that as this whole thing continues to fall apart, the solutions offered will still be miles and miles away from the only thing that makes any sense if what you're interested in is affordable CARE for more people: single-payer.  


    Anne, keep on saying it. (none / 0) (#18)
    by jeffinalabama on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 10:22:23 AM EST
    I'm in complete agreement here. Focus on health care, not on insurance. I guess we're two of the Cassandra's on this one.

    Not listening didn't work out too well for Troy, if I'm not mistaken.


    We've been focusing on health care (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by CST on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:14:18 AM EST
    for years and gotten exactly nowhere.

    Maybe the timing was different now and we should have gone full bore.  But it's not unreasonable to think that what happened the last 15 times a president tried to pass a more comprehensive plan would happen again.

    At least we're trying something this time.


    We are institutionalizing the status quo (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by MO Blue on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:27:00 AM EST
    of an overpriced, private insurance based health care system by propping it up with government subsidies and forcing people to buy a bad product.

    Overpriced insurance, especially low actuarial values insurance, does not equal affordable health care.

    Better than nothing is IMO a very low standard. Theoretically a penny is better than nothing but it sure isn't going to buy you anything.


    Hey, at least (none / 0) (#36)
    by sj on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:34:08 AM EST
    a penny is good luck.

    No, I don't think that's quite right, CST; (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by Anne on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 12:12:56 PM EST
    we have gotten somewhere, but it hasn't been closer to where we need to go, but farther away, in large part due to the fact that pretty much every conversation or discussion or committee or group effort on the issue of health care has been conducted with the albatross of insurance or pharmaceuticals dragging it down.  And down it has gone, over and over.

    And each time, whatever victories have been claimed have been met with back-door ways to keep their profits up; a little more benefit has accrued to the industry and its investors while we have paid higher premiums and co-pays/deductibles, and ultimately, gotten less care for it.

    We have been rearranging the deck chairs, mostly, and each time there's a new arrangement, someone proclaims that we are saved!  Except the ship is still sinking and all we can do is move the furniture around because it's been decreed that we can't consider the best solution.

    If we really wanted to try something, we could allow those between 55 and 64 to enroll in an Enhanced Medicare for All, and see how that goes - how much more efficient it is, whether the outcomes are better, if people find it easier to navigate and use, and so on.  Let's really experiment for once.  I'd do it in a heartbeat, and I know plenty of other people who would, too.

    And just keep enrolling people in the year they reach 55.  If it works as well as most people think it would, start dropping the age by five years, and enroll people the year they reach 50.

    Do we - and by "we" I mean the people who need care they can afford - have something to lose by this?  I don't think so.

    And maybe the side benefit is that it would help show the world that we really aren't afraid of change and do know how to innovate...


    I just (none / 0) (#41)
    by CST on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 12:25:44 PM EST
    don't agree with this at all:

    "it hasn't been closer to where we need to go, but farther away"

    In that light, I really can't react to the rest of this.  We will not agree on that point, and that's kind of the guts of both arguments.

    All of your suggestions are good ones.  None of that changes my mind about the existing bill.


    You're right that without a common (none / 0) (#43)
    by sj on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 12:38:26 PM EST
    understanding there can be no communication.

    And you're certainly entitled to your optimism and your own view.  Being cynical is not really in my nature and I find it exhausting so I'm glad that not everybody is here with me.

    But I would make this suggestion.  Try not let your optimism be blinders.  Be open to the any evidence that contradicts your current perception as well as evidence that supports it.  And be honest as to which column carries more weight.

    In fairness, I'll try to do the same thing.  But I'll continue to prefer the of use my lying eyes instead of polls.  You might try the same.


    I'm not using polls (none / 0) (#44)
    by CST on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 12:41:15 PM EST
    I'm using my lying eyes.

    The ones that have been living under a very similar plan now for 5 years.


    Ah (none / 0) (#45)
    by sj on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 12:47:41 PM EST
    now I understand.

    So far you only see the provisions, without the rate hikes that were anywhere from 12% - 27% this year alone in my circle of friends and colleagues.  Of those insured, anyway.

    I also know some who were uninsured and couldn't afford care prior to the passage of this bill.  So far, they're still uninsured and can't afford care.  


    sorry I didn't mean (none / 0) (#46)
    by CST on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 01:07:20 PM EST
    I've had the same health care package for 5 years.  I meant the 2006 health care reform law passed in MA.

    No, I knew what you meant (none / 0) (#48)
    by sj on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 01:10:19 PM EST
    And I think MA functioned as a sort of template, but it is not a microcosm.

    Functionally, we're still exactly nowhere (none / 0) (#35)
    by sj on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:32:36 AM EST
    Bue we do have a brand new bill with a shiny (if hugely incorrect) name.  And as for the "something" we have this time, we could have had it in '90s when the Republicans first proposed this gigantic giveaway to the insurance companies.

    Well, it was a giveaway to the Republicans, too.  They can continue with their "feed the rich" agenda AND campaign against it.


    Personally, I'm tired of being treated like a chump.


    we "could have" (none / 0) (#39)
    by CST on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:53:19 AM EST
    had a lot of things, but we never did.

    Personally, I think you are all just flat out wrong about this, but time will tell.

    The nixon plan is looking pretty good these days too.


    Frankly (none / 0) (#42)
    by sj on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 12:28:16 PM EST
    we "could have" (none / 0) (#39)
    by CST on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:53:19 AM EST

    had a lot of things, but we never did.

    the reason we never had this plan before is because it is a bad plan.  We used to know that.  We used to understand that the few good things in this plan come at too great a cost.  

    Unfortunately all good plans have been blocked by funds generated by the beneficiaries of those bad plans.

    Personally, I think you are all just flat out wrong about this, but time will tell.

    Time is already telling.  I don't know a single person who has not had a rate hike this year.  And only one person (one!) whose benefits have not decreased.  

    I hope that you are one of the few who can reap a benefit without the equivalent of highway robbery. I wish I could hope you were right, but the very best I can hope for is that it's not as bad as I perceive it to be.

    As for Nixon's plan, it's looking good to you because it IS better than "Obama's" plan.

    Think about that for a while.


    Make that three Cassandra's (none / 0) (#21)
    by MO Blue on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 10:34:38 AM EST
    Make it four (none / 0) (#25)
    by sj on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 10:55:38 AM EST
    But if we keep counting it could get depressing.

    It's been working fine ... (5.00 / 0) (#7)
    by sj on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 01:20:29 AM EST
    ... for insurance companies, though.

    there'd be no healthcare reform legislation if the existing system worked for all parties concerned.

    What prize? (none / 0) (#9)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 08:01:47 AM EST
    Destroying Medicare?

    Forcing people to give insurance companies money?

    Give the Repubs what they want. Repeal this sucker and introduce a single payer system based on the Medicare Model. Let's see who actually wants to help people have health care.


    The Republicans don't want a (none / 0) (#10)
    by Harry Saxon on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 08:33:43 AM EST
    single-payer system, otherwise we'd be like those socialist hellholes like Great Britain, France, Germany, etc..................

    Giving gops what they want (none / 0) (#11)
    by getoffamycloud10 on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 08:48:35 AM EST
    got us in this fix in the first place.

    So, gops pretending to be the great defenders of Medicare, eh?

    That's a good one.

    One can certainly criticize the quality of the healthcare legislation passed, but one can not pretend that the gops have done anything but oppose healthcare legislation.

    On their best day, gops approach healthcare reform with all the zeal they approached: MLK Day, SS, Medicare, Medicaid, Civil Rights, Voter Rights, Education, Environmental issues, safe working conditions, child labor laws and the Pure Food and Drug Act.

    If it's good for the country, gops were and/or are against it.


    The Dems did give the country (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by MO Blue on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 09:18:25 AM EST
    Republican, feed the sharks insurance, pharma and medical industries, health insurance legislation.  

    And indeed, this is exactly the case. Obama's plan closely mirrors three proposals that have attracted the support of Republicans who reside within their party's mainstream: The first is the 1993 Senate Republican health plan, which is compared with Obama's plan here, with the similarity endorsed by former Republican Senator Dave Durenberger here. The second is the Bipartisan Policy Center plan, endorsed by Bob Dole, Howard baker, George Mitchell and Tom Daschle, which is compared to Obama's plan here. And the third, of course, is Mitt Romney's Massachusetts plan, which was crafted by the same economist who helped create Obama's plan, and which is rhetorically indistinguishable from Obama's. (The main difference are that Obama's plan cuts Medicare and imposes numerous other cost-saving measures -- which is to say, attempting to craft a national version of Romney's plan would result in something substantially more liberal than Obama's proposal.) link

    In what paralell dimension (none / 0) (#54)
    by jondee on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 04:09:19 PM EST
    do "the Repubs want" a single payer system?

    That must be the same one in which Teabaggers are consumed with the issue of the strict regulation of the financial services industry..


    Court allows challenge to FISA law: (none / 0) (#4)
    by Anne on Mon Mar 21, 2011 at 09:44:28 PM EST
    From Glenn:

    But today, a three-judge appellate court dealt a serious blow to the Bush/Obama tactic for shielding government eavesdropping from judicial review (i.e., placing secret executive surveillance above and beyond the rule of law).  The unanimous court ruled that the plaintiffs' fear that they will be subjected to this expanded warrantless eavesdropping is reasonable given the sweeping powers the law vests in the Executive, that these fears substantially impede their work, and that these impediments constitute actual harm sufficient to allow them to challenge the constitutionality of the FISA Amendments Act.

    This may sound like a legalistic development but its significance extends far beyond that.  Unlike the bastardized Bush/Obama "state secrets" weapon for avoiding judicial review, "standing" is actually a legitimate and important constitutional restriction on a court's jurisdiction.  The idea is that courts are permitted to resolve only actual disputes between actual parties where the defendant's conduct has uniquely injured the plaintiff in direct ways; we don't want courts to be free-floating, omnipotent tribunals that issue binding answers to every abstract political question.  They are empowered to issue legal rulings only when there is an actual "case or controversy" before them involving parties directly and uniquely harmed by the challenged conduct.


    Today's ruling puts at least some brakes -- for now -- on that license of lawlessness.  It rejected the Bush/Obama claim that citizens must prove they have been targeted by an illegal presidential program before they have the right to ask a court to declare it illegal.  Instead, a plaintiff's reasonable fear that their rights are being violated due to enactment of an allegedly unconstitutional law  -- combined with actual harm suffered as a result of that fear -- suffices to allow them to challenge the legality of those actions.  It is, of course, possible that the Supreme Court can review and reverse this ruling, but the Second Circuit is a well-regarded court -- situated on the level immediately below the Supreme Court -- and this well-reasoned decision will have significant sway.  At the very least, this is an important ruling in eroding what is easily one of the worst political problems plaguing America in the post-9/11 world: the ease with which Presidents and their underlings can insulate their secret actions from the rule of law.

    This is excellent news.

    It was an all-D panel, so stay tuned (none / 0) (#5)
    by andgarden on Mon Mar 21, 2011 at 09:57:47 PM EST
    here's the opinion.

    Standing is . . . malleable.


    Harry and Louise (none / 0) (#8)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 05:47:01 AM EST
    are back only it's not Harry and Louise. I saw a commercial last night for an ad to repeal HCR.

    Only three years after Obama ... (5.00 / 3) (#19)
    by Yman on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 10:24:59 AM EST
    ... brought them back, they're being used against him.

    I wonder if he appreciates he irony ...


    I thought (none / 0) (#23)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 10:45:08 AM EST
    about that too.

    Shame I can't give you 1,000 (none / 0) (#26)
    by MO Blue on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 10:59:26 AM EST
    5's for that comment.

    I almost asked if they were right wing commercials or Obama's commercials but thought that might be too sarcastic even for me.  


    interesting (none / 0) (#13)
    by Capt Howdy on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 09:21:16 AM EST
    interesting that someone finally noticed:

    Don't Call Me, I Won't Call You

    NOBODY calls me anymore -- and that's just fine. With the exception of immediate family members, who mostly phone to discuss medical symptoms and arrange child care, and the Roundabout Theater fund-raising team, which takes a diabolical delight in phoning me every few weeks at precisely the moment I am tucking in my children, people just don't call.

    "I remember when I was growing up, the rule was, `Don't call anyone after 10 p.m.,' " Mr. Adler said. "Now the rule is, `Don't call anyone. Ever.' "

    Mr. Adler? (none / 0) (#24)
    by Dadler on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 10:50:31 AM EST
    Did my dad give you lessons, or do we share a last name?

    the taste of spring. (none / 0) (#14)
    by Capt Howdy on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 09:28:28 AM EST
    running for president (none / 0) (#16)
    by CST on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 10:07:48 AM EST
    2012 edition.

    This might be fun.

    "Trump, who has said he will decide on a presidential bid by June, said he is particularly happy with the fact he "screwed" Gadhafi on a past real estate deal.

    "I rented him a piece of land. He paid me more for one night than the land was worth for two years, and then I didn't let him use the land," Trump boasted. "That's what we should be doing. I don't want to use the word 'screwed', but I screwed him."

    if Donald (none / 0) (#17)
    by Capt Howdy on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 10:11:52 AM EST
    and Sara run, she sure looks like she is running with her world tour and all, it will be an interesting season.

    bonus question:  what did Palin write on the thing she stuck in the western wall the other day?

    best suggestion so far: "where the whales at?"


    I can see the debates now (none / 0) (#28)
    by CST on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:11:08 AM EST
    "How would you handle a sticky situation with a rogue dictator, such as North Korea's Kim Jong Il?"

    Palin: "Oh gee, you know, first of all, I'd pick up that 3am phone call, to say we won't stand for any Islamic terrorists taking over Korea."

    Trump: "I'd call up his accountant and offer him a shady business deal.  Rob him blind and he'll never see it coming.  Then I'll spend that money on a brand new, luxury Korean embassy."


    the debates (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by Capt Howdy on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:23:10 AM EST
    could rival the california debates that featured Arnold, Gary Coleman, Arianna, the stripper and the republican nazi.

    (Trying to recall (none / 0) (#37)
    by brodie on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:42:47 AM EST
    which one was the obvious "republican nazi", since Arnold was already mentioned ...)

    As for the Donald, I've never understood why someone with his obnoxious blowhard personality could have a teevee show with apparently good ratings, especially one that involves the nasty business of firing people, but there you are, and I don't claim to understand American popular culture.

    But my political sense of it is, in the unlikely event he officially tosses his hat into the ring, he'll be 2012's Rudy Giuliani -- lots of undeserved media attention and candidate blowhardery about how great and courageous he is, with frequent repetitive mention of one barely marginally relevant thing -- all his (alleged) enormous wealth -- as an indicator of that greatness.

    Or, in the event Rudy Giuliani again ends up being next year's Rudy Giuliani and has that position taken, Donald could be next year's Pierre S. DuPont/Steve Forbes/John Connally -- tens of millions of dollars spent trying to win the nomination but with only a handful of convention delegates to show for it.  


    Trump's way is easier (none / 0) (#29)
    by jbindc on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:13:35 AM EST
    And hey!  More jobs for blonde cocktail waitresses!

    return to sender (none / 0) (#22)
    by Capt Howdy on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 10:39:30 AM EST
    The U.S. Supreme Court announced today that it would hear an appeal from a death row inmate who is slated for execution in Alabama because of a mix-up in the mailroom of one of New York's most prominent white shoe law firms.

    Two associates at the law firm of Sullivan & Cromwell were representing pro bono a client in Alabama named Cory Maples in his death row appeals. An Alabama state court sent the associates two copies of a judicial order in Maples' case, but since the associates no longer worked at S&C, the mailroom staff sent the orders back to the court unopened and stamped "Return to Sender."  By the time Maples had found new counsel, the deadline for appealing from the court's order had passed.  The 11th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals held that it was too late for Maples to appeal, even though the fault was completely that of his attorneys.

    courtesy of SFLefty at stinque.com

    Stupid ruling by the (none / 0) (#27)
    by MO Blue on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:02:24 AM EST
    11th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals IMO. Hope the SCOTUS overturns their ruling.

    Display of TL front page problem (none / 0) (#31)
    by sj on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:23:06 AM EST
    (and sometimes with other pages) Is anyone else having a problem with this?  On one computer the big "Talk Left" banner at the top is blacked out.  On the other one, the white foreground nenver shows up so the grey background fills the whole page.

    Yemen (none / 0) (#33)
    by Capt Howdy on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:25:32 AM EST
    SANA, Yemen -- President Ali Abdullah Saleh of Yemen, increasingly isolated amid defections and resignations, clung to power on Tuesday, at one point indicating he would accept an opposition deal for his early departure -- proposed weeks ago -- to head off the deepening crisis in the country.

    My new favorite (none / 0) (#38)
    by brodie on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 11:53:11 AM EST
    ballplayer:  Chipper Jones, star third baseman for the Atlanta Braves, TX rancher, and now, conspiracy theorist.  Interesting too that he doesn't reach for the easy, tired nonsense about the Mafia, but instead accuses the Big Boys -- highly placed govt officials.

    Always like to hear about what some of these professional athletes are spending time thinking about outside the cozy <diamond> of their chosen field.  Especially when they say things I agree with ...

    (Almost) awkward "celebrity" sighting (none / 0) (#47)
    by jbindc on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 01:07:21 PM EST
    Went out to grab lunch and went to a place that has a salad bar and a hot bar and also serves sandwiches.  Relatively cheap food for lunch (for DC).  Was filling up my iced tea, whirled around to go pay and almost literally slammed into Bill Schneider of CNN. Luckily I didn't because he seemed very focused and serious or not happy about something.  Awkward.

    Although he is much taller and bigger than I thought.

    SITE VIOLATOR (none / 0) (#50)
    by jbindc on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 01:33:30 PM EST
    Busy today.

    what a relief (none / 0) (#51)
    by Capt Howdy on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 01:59:00 PM EST
    we will always have a perennial candidate named "Paul"

    Sen. Rand Paul tests presidential waters

    "The only decision I've made is I won't run against my dad," Rand Paul said.

    Captain Kirk is 80 (none / 0) (#52)
    by Capt Howdy on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 02:02:55 PM EST
    Arab spring (none / 0) (#53)
    by Capt Howdy on Tue Mar 22, 2011 at 02:37:07 PM EST
    an interactive timeline of Middle East protests

    Ever since a man in Tunisia burnt himself to death in December 2010 in protest at his treatment by police, pro-democracy rebellions have erupted across the Arab world. Our interactive timeline traces key events