Attention counterfactual fans!

How different would the financial crisis be if Kerry had beaten Bush? My guess is "not much" -- what politician would want to interfere with a financial boom? Still, I wonder.


From Consumerist: All Airports Should Have A Recombobulation Area Like The One In Milwaukee


On the financial crisis

This Yves Smith post is one of the best I've seen.

Finance Has Lost Sight of Its Role: "And why is that? Back to the cult issue. Willem Buiter has chastised the Fed for what he calls 'cognitive regulatory capture,' that is, that they identify far too strongly with the values and world view of their charges. But it isn't just the Fed. The media. and to a lesser degree, society at large has bought into the construct of the importance, value, and virtue of the financial sector, even as it is coming violently apart before our eyes. Why, for instance, the vituperative reaction against a GM bailout, while we assume Citi has to be rescued? A GM bankruptcy would be at least as catastrophic as a Citi failure. but GM elicits attacks for the incompetence of its management and the supposedly unreasonable posture of the UAW (the same free market advocates recoil at a deal struck by consenting adults). The particular target for ire is the autoworker pensions and health plans, as well as their work rules. But the pension plans being underwater is the fault of GM management for not providing for them in the fat years; I personally have trouble with the idea that health care should vary by class; and for the work rules, German and Swedish automakers have strong unions and yet can compete."


30 Rock note

Mrs. D. and I watched two "30 Rock"s in a row this afternoon. And, while they never fail to satisfy, I do think they're overusing this joke form of "principle + specific example 1 + funny specific example 2" I deleted the stuff from my Tivo so I'll just make up an example: "But that's a proprietary formula, like Dr. Pepper, or Laura Bush's morning Nyquil."

Maybe it's just cause I saw two in a row, but, like I say, that particular play is getting a little predictable. Like NBA offenses in the 90s, or all the faked moon landings.


Thought for the day

Cogitamus: Every Year The War On Christmas Starts Earlier: "Jesus was an illegitimate child born to backward hicks who didn't have the intellectual wherewithal to plan ahead enough to get a room on a trip they knew they had to take."


Peace, Unity, Love...and Having Fun

I'm so mad about Prop 8 winning I can't see straight. It's like a slap in the face to my friends and relatives. The harshness of that reality drowns out other, sweeter notes. But this popped up on my iPod and made me feel a little better:

We listened to it in college in the 80s. The President-Elect of the United States was also in college in the 80s...holy shit.