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Flotsam and Jetsam

Geraldine Ferraro thinks that the next New York Senator should know the issues and something about legislating. And, no, sitting on the board of the ballet and collecting your mother’s favorite poetry doesn’t count.

Mickey Kaus on the car bailout: “How does the UAW’s Gettelfinger get away with saying these terms are ‘singling out workers’? The deal calls for creditors to convert two thirds of their debt into equity. There are also limits on executive compensation. Maybe they’re mostly toothless in practice–but the terms directed at the UAW are explicitly toothless. They’re just ‘targets.’” Now, if the UAW has this much of a fit when there are no binding give-backs, imagine when they are asking to make a binding deal.  At some point (post-Rick Wagoner I suspect), the GM board of directors will decide they want bankruptcy. And why not? They could dump their UAW obligations while Ford has to live with theirs.

Whatever the poll numbers, I don’t see Sarah Palin going to Washington. Stay in Alaska where she can bone up on the issues, remain the darling of the Right and enhance her executive skills or become one of a dwindling minority of Republicans in the Senate and listen to Dick Durbin and Harry Reid all day? Not even a close call.

Claudia Rossett outdoes herself with the Blago version of Kipling’s “If.”

It is hard to fathom how the RNC could stick with its existing Chairman after the last couple of years: “[Mike]Duncan has been the Invisible Chairman, installed in January 2007 by Karl Rove to be unobtrusive — a mission he has carried out brilliantly. . . But Duncan is basing his reelection campaign on his experience as RNC chairman. How can he take credit for any success while escaping any responsibility for reversals on his watch? It’s like a weatherman taking credit fort the sunshine but saying he has no control over the rain.” Ouch.

Thomas Friedman opines: “China is not going to rescue us or the world economy. We’re going to have to get out of this crisis the old-fashioned way: by digging inside ourselves and getting back to basics — improving U.S. productivity, saving more, studying harder and inventing more stuff to export. ” Well, if that’s the bitter pill for individuals why isn’t it also true for the federal government  – which, among other things, will be propping up car companies that aren’t “getting back to basics”?

The Washington Post editors think the Obama administration is “buying itself a heap of trouble” by allowing Bill Clinton to continue his fundraising from foreign individuals and corporations.

Paul Mirengoff nails this:”[I]t’s pretty clear that the path to gaining African-American support for Republicans is not to be found in selecting a National Committee chair who, like [Katon] Dawson, belonged for 12 years to a country club that does not admit black members. .  . It’s difficult to believe that a long-time member of a club would not know that it excluded blacks from membership (we would be extremely skeptical of a Democrat who invoked this excuse). In any case, I would expect a political leader to find out about something this politically sensitive and morally important.” (And if you are getting the sense that there are no great choices for the head of the RNC, you probably aren’t alone.)

Marc Ambinder thinks card check legislation might have to wait until 2010. But if you are trying to capture nervous lawmakers, it seems that it would be best to vote on it as far from election time as possible. On the other hand bringing it up now, when lots of voters know what the UAW wage rates and works rules did to the car companies, doesn’t seem smart either. Perhaps “never” is the best time (Big Labor can join netroots and gays in the “Stiffed by Obama” line.)


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