Ben Buchwalter


Friday Brain Dump
Administration officials in and out, peace or further instability in Rwanda, and possible nationalization. All trumped by Twitter.
  • Last night Judd Gregg (R NH), Obama’s second choice for Commerce Secretary withdrew his name from consideration. Even though this should make Gregg look like a collassal idiot, he is being hailed as a conservative hero for refusing to help a liberal president save the economy and govern effectively. Kos has an idea for Gregg’s replacement: “nominate a fu*king Democrat.” Greg Sargent: “don’t hire someone for a job who voted to abolish that job.” TPM: Reed Hundt.
  • Rwanda and the DRC are collaborating against a Hutu group that fled to the Congo after the 1994 genocide to escape persecution from the Tutsi-led Rwandan Patriotic Front that now controls the government. On the surface, these governments are working together to combat the Democratic Liberation Forces of Rwanda (FDLR). But some have suspicions about the real motives behind Rwanda’s sudden receptiveness to an alliance with the Congo. Could Rwanda be vying for a stake in the mineral-rich region of eastern Congo? 
  • The final stimulus package is expected to be approved by the House today. Approved with 8 Republican votes?! Holy Lucifer! This means that of the 219 Republicans in Congress (Senate and House), only 11 – or 5% – support the stimulus package. Does this represent the Republican Party? NO! In fact, according to a recent Gallup poll, 28% of Republicans (more than five times the Congressional GOP) support the $800 Billion package. I’d call that out of touch. 
  • Seattle Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske will become the nation’s Drug Czar. Ezra Klein says that he is “better than the old drug czar, worse than no drug czar.” Kerlikowske is “a progressive law enforcement type whose primary reputation is as a proponent of gun control and civil liberties.” 
  • Experts are starting to support nationalizing the banks? Reality or pipe dream? 
  • Tweet. I am swept up by twitter. See my twitter feed here. There are also some very informative peeps on twitter. And idiots like Karl Rove

Happy Valentines Day.

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