Friday, October 08, 2010

Well, I never thought I'd see this: Some in G.O.P. Find Soft Spot for Bill Clinton. I don't know. As a consistent Clinton supporter during his Administrations, I can still remember quite easily the Republican vitriol manifested by such memories as the Lewinsky/impeachment charade, Whitewater, Paula What's-her-name, and the "Don't Blame Me, I Voted for Bush" bumper stickers. Now, if this article suggests a Republican desire for governance from the middle, well, that would be news.

The spate of Obama Administration reform initiatives made political sense to the Administration; it is accepted wisdom that, if you don't get your legislative agenda done within the first year or so of an administration, then it won't get done at all, because of mid-term elections and then the the presidential re-election campaign. But I am reminded of Hal Holbrook's line from All the President's Men: "You build from the outer edges and you go step by step. If you shoot too high and miss, then everybody feels more secure."

In other words, while politically difficult, if not impossible, gradual reform is better than sudden and profound change. So, while legislation such as health care reform may be societally or philosophically laudable, such intitiatives may well be politically damaging or downright suicidal. While I take no real position on such legislation, there used to be a word for doing the right thing at the risk of one's personal interests: statesmanship.
Shooting themselves in the foot: It's not enough that all these lenders are foreclosing on homes and ruining their borrowers' lives. It's not enough that they can't get out of their own way long enough to effectively process loan modifications, for which they have received (a lot of) federal money. Now, these same lenders have screwed up the foreclosure paperwork so badly that many of them are suspending their foreclosure sales, putting yet another category of would-be homeowner into potential eternal limbo.

Can you imagine how much worse it would be if there were no government regulation at all?
Co-counsel every lawyer needs: Superboy. And Superman.

Hmm. I wonder whether the judge would consider his uniform inappropriate courtroom attire?

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

A La Carte Government in action? Fire Department allows house to burn because resident had failed to pay $75 subscription fee.

Yeah, I know he didn't pay the fee -- he says he forgot to do it -- but it seems awfully heartless to literally stand by, watch the guy's house burn (killing three pets inside, by the way) and only swing into action to prevent the fire from spreading to a paid-up neighbor's house. What if people had been inside? Would the fire department still have refused to take action?

Monday, October 04, 2010

This sounds encouraging: New Israeli treatment kills HIV cells.
Cutting off your nose to spite your face: Some 25,000 Palestinians at work building Jewish settlements. Here's what's important, according a one worker on these jobs: "We have lived with Israelis and we will have to live together in the future. I'm pleased that I will be able to make a living,"