Patterico's Pontifications


Financial Reorganizations

Filed under: Economics — DRJ @ 11:20 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Lehman Brothers Holdings, Inc., will file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in New York on Monday. Bank of America walked away from a possible Lehman purchase this weekend but, if regulators and shareholders approve, BOA plans to buy Merrill Lynch for $29/share in a $44 billion transaction.

Reorganizations can be so lucrative.


Broncos Edge the Chargers, 39-38 (Updated)

Filed under: Sports — DRJ @ 10:27 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Mike Shanahan surprised his own players with a gutsy 2-point play at the end of the game to win 39-38.

First the Broncos get to keep a fumble and then they go for two. Talk about adding insult to injury.

UPDATE 9/15/2008: As a result of this game, League spokesman Greg Aiello announced that the NFL competition committee will review the inadvertent whistle rule in the offseason.


Could Obama Replace Biden With Hillary and, if so, Would She Take It?

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 10:02 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

I spent months wondering if Obama and Clinton would run together on a unity ticket. If they had, I think they would have been hard to beat, no matter who was at the top of the ticket. Since there have been some surprises in this election, let’s consider one more:

What if Obama asks Biden to step aside so he can bring Hillary onto the ticket?

Based on Biden’s comments last week, he’s already considered this “What if” question. I assume there is a process where a Democratic VP-designate could be replaced on the ticket since it happened with McGovern-Eagleton, but I haven’t verified that under current Party rules.

In my opinion, it would make Obama look foolish to dump Biden and Obama doesn’t seem like the type who likes to look foolish. In addition, there’s a reason Hillary was never on Obama’s short list of VP candidates. Up to now, Obama apparently thinks he doesn’t need or want the Clintons and the closer we get to the debates, the less likely it becomes that Obama will switch VPs.

Further, I doubt Hillary would say yes even if she had the chance to be Obama’s VP. I think McGovern was turned down by a handful of Democrats before he settled on Eagleton and today’s Democrats may feel the same way. For Hillary in particular, it’s better if Obama loses so she can run again in 2012 although perhaps she would reconsider the VP slot if it positions her as the clear heir apparent.

So where do you think Obama and his advisers are on their VP choice?


Hurricane Ike Aftermath

Filed under: Current Events — DRJ @ 6:41 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

I don’t know if it’s a reflection on the storm, the people, the local media, or all three but the stories I’ve seen on TV and in the media after Hurricane Ike are more positive than negative:

“Jeannine Burks stood outside her Houston home Sunday and surveyed the damage from Hurricane Ike: Tree limbs, debris and standing water everywhere. She had no power, no phones, and had only just back got her water pressure.

In other words, she got lucky.

“I have a roof over my house. I’ve got windows, and a cool front coming tomorrow,” said Burks, who lives in the city’s Sharpstown neighborhood. “Anytime you go through one of these with just broken trees and no power, you’re doing good.”

Some in America’s fourth-largest city fared worse, others better, but the consensus among residents was that Houston, unlike its hard-hit coastal suburbs, was more inconvenienced than devastated.”

I know there are a lot of people hurting in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and elsewhere but there are also stories of people handling adversity. Fox News reported that Clear Channel brought in five 18-wheelers with dry and wet ice to give away to Houstonians who are without power. Dozens and dozens of people volunteered to hand out ice to cars that were waiting for hours to get 1 bag of ice. Like Jeannine Burks, the mood seemed to be patient and grateful.

I’m sure there are stories of great hardship from Ike but there are also people all over America like my 84- and 88-year old Houston aunts who, after their power was restored, promptly made cookies and cakes and delivered them to area police and fire stations. They know what we should all remember: Every day is a blessing.


More Media Bias

Filed under: 2008 Election,Media Bias — DRJ @ 3:57 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

This time from Jill Greenberg, a Beverly Hills photographer chosen by The Atlantic Monthly to photograph John McCain. Would it surprise you to learn the photographer is biased against McCain and let that bias influence her photos of him?

I didn’t think so.

NOTE: Even if you don’t normally read links, please click the link above and read the entire post including the updates. Fortunately it includes condemnation of Greenburg’s actions (but not her cover photo) from the editor of The Atlantic.


Author David Foster Wallace – Dead By Apparent Suicide

Filed under: Miscellaneous — Justin Levine @ 12:14 pm

[posted by Justin Levine]

Author David Foster Wallace is dead after reports that his wife found that he had hanged himself.

I once saw him while he was working on a piece about former KFI talk show host John Ziegler. Never bothered to introduce myself though.

Wallace’s article can be found here.  Ziegler’s reaction to the article can be found here.

Additional afterthought:  After re-reading Wallace’s article, I can’t help but be struck by the irony of his commenting on Ziegler’s “bleak and merciless” outlook on life. Yet it is Wallace himself who ended up committing suicide.

— Justin Levine

Obama’s Fundraising Disaster Now Official — $66 Million Raised in August, but only $77 Million Cash On Hand To Start Sept.

Filed under: 2008 Election — WLS @ 10:42 am

[Posted by WLS]

Official numbers haven’t been released yet, but a campaign official gave these numbers to Ben Smith at Politico.

McCain started August with the $84 million given to him in public financing, and about $120 million in the RNC — their final numbers aren’t out yet either. That’s $200 million, with the RNC hoping to raise another $100 million over the next 60 days.

Obama, after raising $103 million in June and July, took in another $66 million in August. So he has raised nearly $170 million, but has only $77 million left to start the general campaign. I’ve seen suggestions in print that the Denver extravaganza pretty much spent every penny the DNC had, and there are no reports about how much money they had starting Sept. 1.

But the reality on the ground is that for Obama/DNC to match the GOP in spending over the next 52 days, he’ll need to raise $110 million in BOTH September and October.

Not a chance in hell.


New York Times Complaints About Palin Were All Based on Distortions

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 10:10 am

The New York Times complained the other day:

The interviews made clear why Americans should worry about Ms. Palin’s thin résumé and lack of experience. Consider her befuddlement when Mr. Gibson referred to President Bush’s “doctrine” and her remark about having insight into Russia because she can see it from her state.

. . . .

Her answers about why she had told her church that President Bush’s failed policy in Iraq was “God’s plan” did nothing to dispel our concerns about her confusion between faith and policy. Her claim that she was quoting a completely unrelated comment by Lincoln was absurd.

Well, let’s see. It turned out that the Bush Doctrine was multifaceted — something Gibson didn’t understand. And it turned out that Palin’s comments about seeing Russia from Alaska were edited severely, causing the comment to sound bizarre, when it makes sense in context. And she hadn’t “told” her church that Iraq was “God’s plan” but rather prayed that it is.

Strike three, New York Times editors. You’re out!

Do they have anything not predicated on a distortion or a lie? Bueller? Bueller?

Leftists, of course, are sure Palin didn’t know the intricacies of the Bush Doctrine as well as Charlie Gibson. After all, he was looking at her over his glasses. Doesn’t that mean he’s smarter? Plus — though we can’t say this part out loud because it makes us seem sexist — but he is a man, after all . . . and she’s not.

It reminds me of the brouhaha over her comment that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are costing the taxpayers money: well, she was right . . . but surely she didn’t know she was right. What with her being a woman and a former beauty queen and all.

Amazing how she keeps getting lucky on the facts, isn’t it? All these smart men keep criticizing her for botching things, and the ditzy beauty queen gets proved right, time and time again. All by luck, I’m sure.

Well, we have more interviews yet to come. Let’s see if they can lay a glove on her without hitting below the belt.

Though so far, hitting Sarah Palin below the belt hasn’t seemed to hurt her much. Odd, that.

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