take your answer off the air...

  • HorsesAss.Org: the straight poop on WA politics & the press
    progressive brilliance from the guy who pointed out Tim Eyman's nascent horse's-assedness
  • Talker's Magazine
    The quirky talk radio trade mag. Check the Talk Radio Research Project- it's not very scientific, but places on the top 15 talkers list (scroll down to Talk Radio Audiences By Size)) are as hotly contested as Emmys (and mean just about as much).
  • The Advocate
    No, not THAT Advocate... it's the Northwest Progressive Institute's Official Blog.
  • Media Matters
    Documentation of right-wing media in video, audio and text.
  • Orcinus
    home of David Neiwert, freelance investigative journalist and author who writes extensively about far-right hate groups
  • Hominid Views
    "People, politics, science, and whatnot" Darryl is a statistician who fights imperialism with empiricism, gives good links and wry commentary.
  • Jesus' General
    An 11 on the Manly Scale of Absolute Gender, a 12 on the Heavenly Scale of the 10 Commandments and a 6 on the earthly scale of the Immaculately Groomed.
  • Howie in Seattle
    Howie Martin is the Abe Linkin' of progressive Seattle.
  • Streaming Radio Guide
    Hellishly long (5795!) list of radio streaming, steaming on the Internets.
  • The Naked Loon
    News satire -- The Onion in the Seattle petunia patch.
  • Irrational Public Radio
    "informs, challenges, soothes and/or berates, and does so with a pleasing vocal cadence and unmatched enunciation. When you listen to IPR, integrity washes over you like lava, with the pleasing familiarity of a medium-roast coffee and a sensible muffin."
  • The Maddow Blog
    Here's the hyper-interactive La Raych of MSNBC. daily show-vids, freakishly geeky research, and classy graphics.
  • Northwest Broadcasters
    The AM, FM, TV and digital broadcasters of Northwest Washington, USA and Southwest British Columbia, Canada. From Kelso, WA to the northern tip of Vancouver Island, BC - call letters, formats, slogans, networks, technical data, and transmitter maps. Plus "recent" news.
  • News Corpse
    The Internet's chronicle of media decay.
  • The Moderate Voice
    The voice of reason in the age of Obama, and the politics of the far-middle.
  • News Hounds
    Dogged dogging of Fox News by a team who seems to watch every minute of the cable channel so you don't have to.
  • HistoryLink
    Fun to read and free encyclopedia of Washington State history. Founded by the late Walt Crowley, it's an indispensable tool and entertainment source for history wonks and surfers alike.

right-wing blogs we like

  • The Reagan Wing
    Hearin lies the real heart of Washington State Republicans. Doug Parris runs this red-meat social conservative group site which bars no holds when it comes to saying who they are and who they're not; what they believe and what they don't; who their friends are and where the rest of the Republicans can go. Well-written, and flaming.
  • Orbusmax
    inexhaustible Drudgery of NW conservative news
  • The Radio Equalizer
    prolific former Seattle KVI, KIRO talk host speaks authoritatively about radio.
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« A real right-wing conspiracy | Main | Where's Randi? »

February 08, 2009


Puget Sound

regarding you're Tim Geithner quote from Democracy Now with Amy Goodman we get:
why what Geithner did was worse than Daschle:

"Welcome to Democracy Now!

JAMES STEELE: Good to be with you, Amy.

AMY GOODMAN: It's good to have you both with us. Jim Steele, let's begin with you. Why do you think Geithner's problems were actually worse than Tom Daschle's tax problems?

JAMES STEELE: Well, Daschle ended up having to pay far more in taxes than Geithner did, and neither one of these cases are forgivable or can be explained away easily. But the difference with Geithner is, I think almost every American knows that you have to pay Social Security and Medicare taxes. I think just the average person on the street who draws a paycheck knows that is taken out of their check. And that's what's so disturbing about Geithner's. If these were avoidable mistakes, if these were simply things he overlooked, I think the question is, why weren't those corrected at some point before President Obama had tapped him to be Treasury secretary?

This is the thing that's actually disturbing about both of these cases. Both Geithner and Daschle went back and paid these taxes, but only after their names were dropped into that hopper, which suggested they were going to be cabinet officers. If these were truly under those categories of those kinds of mistakes, the question is, why wasn't that done at some time in the past, especially in the case of Geithner, where he had been audited by the IRS for previous tax years and had paid some additional taxes at that time. It was only after he was suggested for the Treasury secretary and the vetting process began that he then remitted these additional taxes.

AMY GOODMAN: Don Barlett, explain further exactly what the taxes were that Tim Geithner paid and didn't pay and what the relation was to his work at the IMF, the International Monetary Fund.

DONALD BARLETT: Well, as Jim indicated, these are the payroll taxes-Social Security, Medicare-that everyone has to pay. And, you know, the tax code is complex. Everybody knows that. It is easy to make a mistake.

But the reason we said that Geithner's was far more egregious is this. He signed a piece of paper acknowledging that he owed both taxes while he was employed by the IMF. He then collected the money from IMF to pay the taxes. Now, most of us, you know, the payroll taxes are withheld. We don't get reimbursed for those taxes. It comes out of our own pocket. But Mr. Geithner not only signed a paper acknowledging he owed taxes, he collected money to pay the taxes and then didn't pay them and pocketed the money. This is why it was far more egregious for him and why-you know, the New York Times demanded that Tom Daschle withdraw, and he did. But the same demand was not put on Mr. Geithner.

And even more disturbing is the fact that only one Democratic member of the Senate Finance Committee voted against Mr. Geithner for this reason-for this reason. That was the Iowa Senator Tom Harkin, who said he just couldn't support it. And Harkin was right, because the message this is sending to the public of large-the tax system already is as close to collapse as you're going to get as a result of it not being enforced evenly. The double standard on tax law-as you indicated in the introduction, Jim and I have been writing about taxes for almost forty years. Our first series that won the Pulitzer Prize was on the unequal enforcement of the tax code. And that was back in the 1970s. And since then, it has exploded. And what is happening now in Washington just captures where it is now. Here you have the Senate Finance Committee approving this, and you have the Senate overwhelmingly approving it.

AMY GOODMAN: I just want to go back to that one point that you made about Geithner and what you wrote about in this piece in The Daily Beast. "According to the Senate Finance Committee, Geithner ‘filled out, signed and submitted an annual tax-allowance request with the IMF that states, "I wish to apply for tax allowance of US federal and state income taxes and the difference between the ‘self-employed' and ‘employed' obligation of the US Social Security tax which I will pay on my Fund income."'"

So the IMF actually gave him money for those taxes to pay, but he didn't pay them. When exactly did this come to his attention? And why is it now that he's paying them, Don?

DONALD BARLETT: Well, he wanted to be secretary of the Treasury. I mean, you want a top cabinet job, you've got to pay your taxes. I mean, it looks a little unseemly if you don't.

AMY GOODMAN: Right, it's clear why he's paying them now, but how long was it? I mean, it was called to his attention before this point.



JAMES STEELE: Two audits for a couple of those previous years. And he did have a settlement with them at that time. But it was not until his name was proposed for Treasury secretary that then the vetting-in that vetting process, he went back and looked at two other years, if I'm not mistaken, and it was on those, where the situation was very similar to the ones he had settled with IRS, that he then paid the taxes."


You mean there are still people out there who read this blog? (Tony?) Unbelievable!

Very chatty column, Michael. Good one and mostly radio.

Would have thought KUOW would carry the President's radio address - being public radio and all. Bush's too just 'cuz he was Prez. well, sort of. Guess, "The Decider" - self-described - is more accurate.

Singapore Slings - put me flat on my ass when I was a youngster and never had a second one. Of course, the "mixologist" was a good friend. Thought it was pretty funny, he did.


Man, why doesn't Maddow ditch those glasses? Is she trying to look weird on purpose?

I mean, I understand her sexual orientation and all, she's no doubt much more of a man that Burbank (that wouldn't take much), but getting rid of the glasses and growing out the hair some would do wonders for her appearance.


Thanks a lot, Bla'm. I'm home with a horrid cold and you go and write a column that makes me laugh so much I about coughed up a lung....

I keep hoping the powers-that-be at the PI decide to become an online newspaper...they have one of the largest numbers of online users in the country.

David Restione has never been the same after his stint on "Extreme Makeover."


We've decided we like Mika.....

Who is "we"?


Geithner is a brilliant guy, and got through because the Republicans know him and like him. that's why socialists like Amy Goodman didn't like him. He is one of the best appointment Obama has made in his centrist government. Not the only appt that pissed off the extreme left.


oh my god...Puts sourcing Amy Goodman. I am going back to bed.

blathering michael

Puts: Maybe there's hope for you: may I suggest Noam Chomsky?

Puget Sound

i read all kinds of stuff to include peter beinhart and david corn. christopher hitchens is one of my favorites from the days when he was the main writer for The Nation.

wrong is wrong. geithner was wrong.


Komo aired the weekly radio address this past Saturday. I heard it.

Doesn't anyone listen to Komo on the weekend? Am I the only one who can't get enough of Bill Ogden's riveting traffic reports at 3:24 on a Saturday afternoon?


Can I stop laughing now. Usually when a President holds a national news conference he usually addresses the nation. Remember CLinton when said he "I did not have sexual relations with that girl". He looked straight into every Americans eyes when he said it. President Obama, he looked only twice into the front camera. Those Williams sisters need to quit playing tennis behind the audience so our President can be focused when he addresses the nation. Get rid of them teleprompters.


Arlen Sphincter was one of the disloyal republicans who joined our side and voted for the stimulus package. We cannot fail..


Press conferences are between him and the reporters sitting on two sides of the room. It would be weird if he just stared straight ahead into the camera.

So, forgetting his style, which you didnt like, what did you think of his message, Steven?


His message, lets just say my knees are not shaking.

And prime time news conferences are not meant for the audience that is present. It is meant for the country. Maybe thats where you are confused. Its a News Conference, not a Press Conference.


"We cannot fail.."

The stimulus could fail - Spinchter or no Spinchter. So if the economy goes worse, so goes the Dimocrat control of Congress. If it succeeds, the jury is out and it will also depend on other decisions made between now and then. No one can confidently predict if this omnibus spending bill sprinkled with meager tax cuts will help the economy. It will take a year to be able to measure the real effects.


Huh? Does it seem like the repugs are corn-fuesd?

Woody Held

I remember a time when there was a virtual plethora of ads on radio for products like Absorbine Jr. and Gold Bond powder.

But now these ads seemingly have disappeared, nowhere to be found. As the population ages, its skin grows ever-drier. We cry out for help, but none is there.

Rush Limbaugh apparently wants us baby boomers to itch to death while he lounges about in his Florida mansion. That is the real conspiracy that no one ever mentions.
Woody Held Statistics


Steven, why should your knees be shaking when a POL speaks? Do they shake when you agree with the POL? Nasty…. Reminds me of Craig.

Woody Held

Is no one out there as outraged?

BTW check out the cover article in yesterdays 'Pacific Northwest' insert to the Seattle Times: "mountain beaver! THE LITTLE BEAST BENEATH US"

Woody Held Statistics


Very smart news conference today. He seemed to know who he was going to call on before he went out. He called on Chuck Todd before he saw him.

I loved this part:

They were pleasantly surprised and complimentary about the tax cut that were presented in that framework. Those tax cuts are still in there.

I mean, I suppose what I could have done is started off with no tax cuts, knowing that I was going to want some and then let them take credit for all of them. And maybe that’s the lesson I learned.

Republicans: a bunch of vain little boys.

My grandpa helper said today that he's probably a Republican because his dad was but he's not a Republican anymore. I gave him a hug for that.


Actually, that should read:

Republicans: a bunch of old white men. McCain, Spector, Lindsey Graham, Tom Coburn...


Multiculturalism in political correct speak is superficial and sucks because it reeks of reverse discrimination.

Democrats have more menopausal white women like Stabenow, Boxer, Pelousi, Feinstein, Murray, Mikulski, and Landrieu.




Steven – politics aside, homesick is better than seasick! I know we can agree on that! Ha Ha Ha. I’ll put this on a topic that is not about to fade. Laying all jokes aside though, yesterday was the first time I felt queasy after I came out of the void. The smell of hydraulics with stale water was no good. I was down there with the deckies securing gate valve for my transducer. Never felt queasy in the Navy as I was an avionics zoomie so it was either carriers or P-3s.

The sunrise over the Pacific was beautiful this morning. The gale winds subsided but the waves were still there. We got caught in a trough a few times but things were not flying around like they were yesterday. I went out on the graded deck with a cup of coffee to keep my hands warm while I had my back to the winds just to see if we could get splashed. Today’s work was mostly with software. I was working on the security server when I decided to give my eyes rest and go outside for a dose of fresh cold air. As I looked out the window of the door I saw two dolphins (or porpoise could never tell the difference) swimming along our starboard side. They jumped out of the swell a few times with swimming speed about ten knots. Best display of dolphins had to be the large pod one day sailing time west of the Galapagos a few years back. There must have been over 150 in the group. I’ve seen all sorts of whales too when sailing in Alaska, the equator and French Polynesia. You could be sitting on the beach in Samoa downing a Vailima and see dolphins not too far from shore.

We are approximately 450 miles west of San Francisco tonight. I am going to have to set up the short wave and AM radio when I get to Hawaii so we can get local stations at night during those Northwest Hawaiian Island cruises. If it was set up now I know we can hear all the stations up and down the coast as well as the Midwest. Time to hit the rack as another day puts us out a week out of Honolulu. Different issues to work on tomorrow. It’s always fun working on a transit cruise when the boat just got out of the yard. Somewhere I have two newly installed valves for my salt water temperature and conductivity measuring system that they didn’t tell me about. Looks like another day in the voids or stores.

Take care and good night from the North Pacific.

Mike the Driver

KOMO has been carrying President Obama's weekly Saturday chat.

I've heard it more than once and then they play the Republican response a little later in the hour.

When I saw highlights of Obama on TV tonite on the news, he can't look at the camera in front of him to the American People. I got a kick out of hearing his response to question about Iran. Um, uh, etc. Seemed like he was waiting for someone to bring up the Iran notes on the teleprompter.

I have thought of myself as a democrat in the past, but usually vote who I think is best for the job in each race.

Way too much pork in this "stimulus bill". Tacoma wants hundreds of millions for street repair and sidewalks... why? Because they don't have the money due to all the "Big Bang Projects" of the past. Infrastructure repairs didn't provide enough "bang for the buck". Per former City Council member Sharon McGavick.

Plus, Tacoma has the potential of getting sued for failure to be ADA compliant on sidewalks/crosswalks... That's why they want all the money from the Feds.


The Pork bill has passed. Lets hope it does what it is intended to do.

Sparky, does your mom feel good about this provision in the Pork Bill. Does she even know it was there inthe first place. Socialism shoved down out throat in the disguise as pork barrel.

"Daschle says health-care reform “will not be pain free.” Seniors should be more accepting of the conditions that come with age instead of treating them. That means the elderly will bear the brunt."

Since Daschle's tax problems keeps him from heading this department, will the next appointee feel the same.


My mother read what you wrote and said she is sorry you don't understand that Daschel is no longer in the running, and so why does it matter what he says? She also thinks it is silly you quote an article that makes it sound like Daschle is making ANY decisions on the national level.

My mom is very smart.


By the way, Steven, the Senate version of the bill is what passed today, with 3 Republicans voting in favor of it. But a compromise bill still has to be made between the House and the Senate, so nothing is carved in stone at this point.

Robert Reich had some thoughts on the voting today:
Republicans don't want their fingerprints on the stimulus bill or the next bank bailout because they plan to make the midterm election of 2010 a national referendum on Barack Obama's handling of the economy. They know that by then the economy will still appear sufficiently weak that they can dub the entire Obama effort a failure -- even if the economy would have been far worse without it, even if the economy is beginning to turn around. They'll say "he wanted more government spending, and we said no, but we didn't have the votes. Elect us and we'll turn the economy around by cutting taxes and getting government out of the private sector."

Obama believes Republicans will eventually embrace bipartisanship. I hope he's right but I fear he's wrong. They want to take back Congress the way Newt Gingrich retook the House (and helped Republicans retake the Senate) in 1994 -- with hellfire and brimstone. Once in control of Congress, they'll be able to block Obama's big inititiaves on health care and the environment, stop any Supreme Court nominees, and set up their own candidate for the White House in 2012.

So remember, the Republicans are taking party over patriotism. But what else is new?


How many of the Senators and Congress critters really know what is in this bill?
That is the part that really pisses me off. I accept that we lost the election and the D's are going to get just about anything they want passed. But what did they just pass that my as yet to be born grand son is going to have to pay. Poor little shit already has to support me through Soc Security.
By the way, is ACORN really stimulus?


What they should be spending money on is rebuilding the railroad system and electrifying it, we have a tremendous problem moving around this continent sized nation.

We have to prepare for manufacturing at a much smaller (and local) scale than the scale represented by General Motors. No more "Happy Motoring"


They are still working on it, chucks. Nothing has been finalized or passed. I was going to ask Steven to give me an example of "pork", but decided not to.


"Since Daschle's tax problems keeps him from heading this department"

Sparky did your mom read the ending of my post. Or just the part you wanted her to read. I was very clear that Daschle was not going to be heading the department. What other part of the post did you edit out so she wouldn't see or hear. Maybe the...

"That means the elderly will bear the brunt"

I'm sure she is smart. But if she doesn't have the whole story and just gets fed what you want her to hear or read since she is in your home now, then maybe we should put a "fairness Doctrine" in your household. Because what that quote above means to me is that the elderly should just bear the pain they are suffering from old age and die peacefully. Doesn't it bother you with ideas like that that Obama was even going to consider Daschle to run this department in the first place.

And you see the pork in the bill Sparky. You are not fooling anyone. You just see the pork as another tasty treat coming from pigs. Bacon.


"Once in control of Congress, they'll be able to block Obama's big inititiaves on health care and the environment, stop any Supreme Court nominees, and set up their own candidate for the White House in 2012."

I see you forgot the part of balancing the budget and leaving a surplus for the next President. Wouldn't those two things be a good thing again Sparky. Or do you think President Obama and this Lib Congress will spend to much that it will be impossible to balance again.


Coiler, hows the weather in Fort Myers. Great question by the way.


I dunno, I was in Tampa when it was 94. There were a few folk who supported idiot Bushler. We have taken care of them. Thanks for the update.


She can read all by herself without help from me, Steven. She read all of it, including the article, rolled her eyes and asked me why I talk to you.

You asked...


Then how did she miss that part Sparky. Did she have her reading glasses on. Were you hiding them on her. It was clearly there that I said Daschle was not in the running to lead that Department. And that was her only criticism of my post.


"I intend to do what the prior administration failed to do and that is to build a framework for offshore renewable energy development so that we can incorporate the great potential for wind, wave and ocean current energy into our offshore energy strategy,"

When Bush lifted the ban last year oil plunged down to under $40.00 a bbl. Well hold onto your gas cap, as those $150.00 a bbl will be back before you know it thanks to who ever this Salazar gets his orders from.


Why? He is talking about renewable energy.


That was a good move by Bush - one a few. The price of oil will stay reasonable but ramp up as the supply goes down.

I don't put much faith in the current Administration as long as Pelosi and Reid are in charge of Congress. They are Neanderthals, fascistic (very little difference between them and the Bush Administration - except they like big government socialism more) and owned lock-stock and barrel by the Environmental lobby and Al Gore is socking away millions for funneling $ into wind and solar and blowing off nuclear and any additional drilling. Why do you leftists like this ? Is it only because conservatives and Republicans are in favor of stuff like this ?

If so, you might ask yourself have you been brainwashed ? If so, you may be more like the moonies back in the 80's than you realize and need to be deprogrammed and overhaul your belief system. Apparently the Democrats in Congress who are controlled by special interests feel this way. They are not really looking out for you, so why do you look out for them ? (Republicans are also influenced by different special interests, but they are out of power as they earned that status). Sad state of affairs...


Uhh it's under $40 a barrel today. $37.90. In fact it went that way right before the election. So if what Bush did was so great, how come the price at the pump continues to increase? Where was Bushler from 03'-08 while his pals were making so much profit from gas?


Anybody look at Exxons profits last year? Just curious.

Of course, I don't suppose it matters really. Just as long as the middle class and poor people don't get any, the right is tickled almost pink.

Hmm...Exxon profited $45.2 billion last year, is sitting $31 billion, and may snap up smaller competitors.

Whatever happened to that saying: too big to fail?

Oh well, it only comes up when they actually do fail and come begging for their share of socialism.


I never heard the same revisionists during the 03-08' bush era say 'bush ought to be doing something about the price of oil' but after he's out, we're are being snowed into believing he had the invisible hand of Adam Smith at work. The lifting of any ban had no play in the price, it was the economy stupid. People had mortgaged all they had to buy $4 gas.


Weren't you involved in the Church of Scientology at some point during your past ?


BTW, Bush no longer is President. The lifting of the offshore drilling ban did affect the price at the time - if you remember, it drove the price down about $16/barrel, but the dynamics were different then. The speculators were influenced by futures and it was projected at that time that there would be offshore drilling and more supply out of the hands of the OPECkers. George Soros and the Hedge funds loved it.. That was then.

However, after the economy tanked here in September and there was that big sucking noise all over the world that contributed driving the price down coupled with falling demand that made gas unbelievably cheap. It's a giant roller coaster ride and will eventually get back to $4/gallon maybe before year's end.


Weren't you involved in the Bush administration, screening people at Town Hall events during your past?


The economy determined the demand for oil, chucks lost his RV job, people drove less, it's in the papers back then, look it up Sherlock.


oh but Coiler, anything that happened between 2001 and 2006 wasnt Bush's fault. It was the fault of the Dems in congress. Those 4$ gallons of gas had to be the Democrats fault. And of course, anything that happened after 06 was the Democrats fault. Bushie wasnt responsible for anything. Everything happened TO him, not because of him.


Yes, come a year from now these revisionists will blame President Obama for everything. Obama inherited everything from the previous admin, any 3 year old could point that out.


A year from now?

You haven't been paying attention, Coiler. From what I've been reading on this blog, it all started in 2006. It just came rainig down from out of the blue like a hoard of locusts.

Poor George. He was just a victim of circumstance.

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