Morning Quick Hits
by Deacon Blues
Some random thoughts this morning:
After consulting with military leaders and hearing their concerns about complying with a 16-month withdrawal timeline, Obama is reportedly prepared to allow for a slight slippage to mid-2010, or perhaps August 2010, for when all combat troops will be out of Iraq. This will still leave 40,000-50,000 troops in Iraq, but it addresses the concerns of CENTCOM and fends off the anticipated GOP claims that we are abandoning Iraq.
David Sirota reminds us, as does Paul Krugman, that temporary nationalization is not a new concept in this country in a time of crisis. As word leaks out that the federal government is imposing new stress test requirements upon the banks to ensure their ability to withstand the next round of financial shocks, Fed Chairman Bernanke tried to dispel concerns that a massive round of bank nationalizations was ahead of us. But the feds are ready to enlarge their stake in Citibank upwards of 30% from 8% today to ensure the bank gets safely beyond the next 12-18 months, and the same seems to be true for Bank of America, despite claims from the leadership that it too is safely capitalized. Hell, even Alan Greenspan thinks it might be necessary. But Tristan at Open Left has a good observation: let’s call it “rehab” and not nationalization. It’s a better bit of framing.
Norah O’Donnell wasted no time taking apart another GOP bobble head, when he started spewing the usual inane talking points about the stimulus bill and its alleged pork. As O’Donnell noted, the media is catching on to the fact that the GOP has no ideas (except the same old ones that got us here, as expressed by Bobby Jindal), and is prepared to simply replay the Newt Gingrich playbook from 1993-1994 of opposing everything the Democrats do to establish the basis for their own argument of change.
George Will has issues. A grown man who has worn a bow tie for his entire adult life decades after they went out of style, who glamorizes and adores major league baseball as some sort of overriding way to view life, thinks it strange and presumably unacceptable that grown men hug each other after political speeches. It’s Will’s final way to denigrate the political message that has run over the GOP.