NDN Blog

A Dispatch from the Right

One of the big arguments Simon has been making this year is that bipartisanship is great-- but only if reasonable people from two sides can come together and reach an agreement.  If one side is unreasonable, well, then, you have a problem.

David Frum, a Bush speechwriter and conservative pundit, had a column in a recent issue of The Week responding to the nuts who showed up at town hall meetings packing heat. He doesn't agree with Obama, but, he writes:

The president can be met and bested on the field of reason—but only by people who are themselves reasonable.

It's good to hear a voice from the GOP admitting that this kind of violent right wing fury isn't really healthy for our democracy.  Frum also digs a bit into the sources behind all this, and points to the talk radio and Fox News wackos-- Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity, et al.-- competing to be the most crazy:

As revenues dwindle, hosts feel compelled to intensify the talk-radio experience, hoping to win larger audience share with more extreme talk. It's like the early days of the pornography industry: At first a naked woman is thrilling enough, but soon a jaded audience is demanding more and more, wilder and wilder.

9500 Liberty

Re-Tweeting on the blog?  Radical, perhaps:

RT @ndn729: Come check out 9500 Liberty, an amazing documentary about the injustice of our immigration system on the local level- 12:15, rm 406- #nn09

Learn more about the film here, or, if you're so lucky as to be at Netroots Nation, come check it out!


If you're in Washington right now, you've probably noticed that you're one of the only people left here.  Things get lazy in August, and we at NDN will be following suit with a scaled-back blogging regime effective now. We'll be back at full intensity in September.

If-- without your Daily Roundup, without your New Tools updates, without your regular punditry and analysis-- you're suffering from NDN withdrawal, there are things you can do to help yourself

We hope you make it through the month alright, and we'll see you in September!


Wed 8/12 Roundup: Krooked Karl, Angry Seniors, Crooked Rod Plays King

- A 2 1/2 year investigation by the House Judiciary Committee into the Bush Administration's dismissal of federal prosuectors in 2006 ended yesterday, with the release of thousands of pages of once-secret testimony and internal e-mails. Karl Rove and Harriet Meiers don't come out looking too good.

- Rep. Adam Schiff, who was involved in the investigation wrote about it on HuffPo.

- President Obama is taking on the lies around health care with his own series of town halls.

- Seyward Darby at TNR looks forward to the 2010 census, and sees twelve kinds of trouble brewing.

- Here's Simon on the Census.

- More than 2/3 of people on earth will have a cell phone by the end of the year.

- In Politico, reportage on the White House's problem with seniors, who feel ignored in the health care debate.

- Dell is working with Nickelodeon to release a new netbook for tweens.

- Iraq's Sunnis are continuing the violence, but the Shiites are holding back.

- Politico's Mike Allen writes on the dirty tricks of two GOP Senators who are stalling the confirmation of the Secretary of the Army.

- Last, O! How the mighty have fallen. Former Gov. "Crooked Rod" Blagojevich kicks it with Fabio and sings karaoke.  It's beyond surreal:

They Were Who We Thought They Were

The House Judiciary Committee just concluded a 2.5 year investigation into the firings of federal prosecutors under Bush, and the results are pretty damning. Most importantly, the report ties Karl Rove and Harriet Miers directly to the firings: 

The dismissal of New Mexico U.S. Attorney David C. Iglesias in December 2006 followed extensive communication among lawyers and political aides in the White House who hashed over complaints about his work on public corruption cases against Democrats, according to newly released e-mails and transcripts of closed-door House testimony by former Bush counsel Harriet Miers and political chief Karl Rove.

A campaign to oust Iglesias intensified after state party officials and GOP members of the congressional delegation apparently concluded he was not pursuing the cases against Democrats in a way that would help then- Rep. Heather Wilson in a tight reelection race in New Mexico, according to interviews and Bush White House e-mails released Tuesday by congressional investigators. The documents place the genesis of Iglesias's dismissal earlier than previously known.

The disclosures mark the end of a 2 1/2 year investigation by the House Judiciary Committee, which sued to gain access to Bush White House documents in a dispute that struck at the heart of a president's executive power. House members have reserved the right to hold a public hearing this fall at which Rove, Miers, and other aides could appear.

Will Rove be prosecuted? Will this lead to other investigations into how things went so wrong during the Bush years? Hard to say just yet.  In the meanwhile, TPM is raking through all the documents just released, and HuffPo invites you to help them sort through all 700 pages and pick out the juicy bits.

Right Wing Site Features Simon Talking Lou Dobbs, Glenn Beck

At an event we held last week, Simon argued that Lou Dobbs's racist, xenophobic blather has gotten so bad that he should be banished from CNN to FoxNews, where Glenn Beck has normalized insane rantings.  He was captured on film by the folks over at CNS News (The Right News. Right Now.), who covered Simon's speech in an admirably impartial manner.

Tue 8/11 Roundup: Mexican Prisons, Bill in Pittsburgh, Hillary in Kinshasa

- President Obama says immigration reform is coming-- probably in early 2010.

- Mexico's prisons are not exactly as airtight as we might have hoped.

- The latest bombings in Iraq killed 50 and leveled an entire village near Mosul.

- The White House has unveiled a new website to dispel myths about its health care plan.

- Trade has dropped through the floor this year.  Bad news.

- The women of the eastern Congo are suffering an epidemic of rape, and US-backed military action is making it worse, not better.  Hillary Clinton called yesterday for an end to the sexual violence.

- Simon is quoted at length dispelling the idea that a GOP reinvigoration might begin in California.

- Bill Clinton was in Vegas yesterday for his birthday.  He'll be in Pittsburgh later this week for Netroots Nation.

- Keep your eyes on the new FP-New America AfPak Channel for all the latest on the region.

Mon 8/10 Roundup: Drug Lords on the Hit List, Lunging for Laptops, Executive Ceasefire

- The NY Times had an article on Saturday describing the myriad scary ways climate change is increasingly viewed as a security threat.

- Expect the Swine Flu to ravage your community soon.

- Fifty Afghan drug lords have been added to the U.S. military's hit list.

- David Leonhardt has an unusually congratulatory column, suggesting that Washington types may have prevented this recession from being much, much worse.

- Neocons speak about why their favorite destination on TV is, increasingly, the Daily Show with Jon Stewart.

- Bill O'Reilly and Keith Olbermann are back at war, after an executive-negotiated ceasefire failed.

- Lloyd Grove on the Daily Beast wonders how Lou Dobbs went from journalist to nutso.

- Classrooms are going digital.  More on this soon.

- The Iranian government has admitted to torturing people who took part in the uprising. The NY Times reports protesters were raped in prison.

- The Iranian government has confirmed that they're holding three American hikers captured in Kurdish regions.

- Banks are on pace to make $38 billion in overdraft fees this year, one third of that from me, personally.

- Janet Murguia had a thoughtful piece on Sotomayor's confirmation on Friday.

- Wise Latinas around the country are claiming the mantle for themselves.

- This morning I woke up and lunged for my laptop, and the first thing I read was an article about people who wake up and lunge for their laptops.

- Last, seven years later, a Kenyan man is still trying to get Chelsea Clinton's hand in marriage.

Fri 8/7 Roundup: Sotomayor!, Baitullah Mehsud, Chopped Offal

- Sonia Sotomayor was confirmed by the Senate to take her seat on the highest court in the land.

- Simon's commentary on HuffPo-- questioning the GOP's relationship to race.

- The White House is struggling to measure success in Afghanistan.

- The US military has yet to confirm it, but it looks like Baitullah Mehsud was killed in a drone attack.

- Hooray for statistical noise!  The unemployment rate dropped marginally last month.

- AIG posted its first profit in two years.

- Economists agree, the stimulus raised the bottom.

- I, for one, am anxiously awaiting Bill O'Reilly's glowing tribute to Obama.

- Fighting over chopped offal? A dispute over the origin of Haggis could tear Britain apart.

- Last, enjoy some footage from our event on Tuesday, as recorded by Cybercast News Service (The Right News.  Right Now.):

Thu 8/6 Roundup: Bad Banks, Confirmation, Wearing Pants While Being a Woman

- The Obama administration intends to announce today a new plan for detaining undocumented immigrants facing deportation.

- The "gang of six" will roll through the White House today to talk health care with the President.

- The government is considering stripping Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac of their troubled assets, and putting them in a bad bank.

- Sotomayor will likely be confirmed this afternoon.  The GOP will vote against her.

- The Senate will likely inject an extra $2b into "cash for clunkers."

- In the WSJ, Erica Alini writes that wages are stagnant across the country, but DC is in better shape than most.

- Nouriel Roubini looks to other countries that seem to be doing fairly well despite the global recession.

- A Sudanese journalist, facing a sentence of 40 lashes for wearing pants while being a woman, will contest her conviction all the way to the highest court-- and if she loses, she asks for not 40 but 40,000 lashes.

- The Argentine soccer league has ground to a halt thanks to crippling debt.

- Last, Lou Dobbs is a huge racist:

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