September 27, 2010

Lickety-Split Links (092710, Morning)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 9:27 am

Insight of the Day, from Matt at Weapons of Mass Discussion, who channels those “When E.F. Hutton Talks, People Listen” commercials of yesteryear (examples here and here) — “Boehner Talks Obama Listens.”

The great and powerful Oz has nothing on the Great and Powerful Republican Leader. Go there and see what Matt is referring to.

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Here’s an interesting August 2008 flashback, considering Ohio Democratic Party Chairman Chris Redfern’s characterization of ObamaCare opponents last week (Warning: F-bomb is at link) — “Dem. Party Chairman Says Americans are Selfish and Against ‘The Least Among Us’”

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Mickey Kaus (HT Instapundit), on the possibility of lame-duck mischief by defeated Congressional Democrats — “Nothing makes me more paranoid … than the left’s attempts to say my fears are paranoid.”

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From China, via Jamie Glazov at Pajamas Media (links are in original):

The torch-carriers for Mao Tse-tung’s Red Guards have seen to it that Degang’s … books have been purged from all of Beijing’s store shelves. … The country’s media has launched a smear campaign against (him), making all kinds of defamatory accusations, which include financial corruption … and the seduction of married women. The authorities have … squashed his media appearances. Degang himself remains out of sight and the Chinese people do not dare utter his name.

Although it reads like it’s from the 1960s after I purged more modern and high-tech references to what the Chinese Communist government is doing to comedian Guo Degang, it’s really happening now.

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“Obama: Teacher unions can help boost schools” — An interesting statement, tacitly acknowledging that they been a serious stumbling block for decades.

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From “The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same” Dept.:

  • John Kerry, October 2006 — “You know, education, if you make the most of it, if you study hard and you do your homework, and you make an effort to be smart, uh, you, you can do well. If you don’t, you get stuck in Iraq.”
  • John Kerry, September 2010 — “John Kerry: Democrats’ woes stem from uninformed voters.” Specifically, “We have an electorate that doesn’t always pay that much attention to what’s going on so people are influenced by a simple slogan rather than the facts or the truth or what’s happening.”

The common thread, of course, is elitist Ruling Class contempt for Tea Party patriots specifically and the Country Class in general, whether they’re serving overseas or sincerely attempting to improve their country through activism. Not surprising, coming from a guy who thinks taxes are for other people and uses the “Do you know who I am?” method to bully his way through waiting lines — but definitely contemptible.

Positivity: WWI Soldier’s Sketches, Paintings

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 5:56 am

Go to the link to see some truly amazing work (HT to an e-mailer):

Last updated at 1:14 PM on 14th September 2010

Discovered after 90 years: Diary complete with amazing paintings and drawings that bring to life the horror faced by Tommies in the WWI trenches

A fresh insight into life in the trenches in World War One has been discovered in a series of amazing sketches and drawings found in a soldier’s diary hidden away for 90 years.

Lieutenant Kenneth Wootton’s 120-page journal vividly brings to life the horror of major WWI battles, and even includes detailed ink drawings of tanks and battle movements.

Lt Wootton, who was awarded the MC for conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty, kept a diary from 1915 until 1917, when he was sent home to England after being injured in an explosion. …

Scooped: British Publication Tells Us Uncle Sam Having Problems Unload Citi Shares

CITI

You would think someone in the U.S. establishment press would be following Uncle Sam’s progress or lack thereof in getting out from under its investment in Citigroup, especially since the government promised that it would be fully divested from the bank holding company by the end of this year. From all appearances, you would be wrong.

It looks like the government may not be able to keep that year-end divestiture promise. For a fair number of news followers to learn that, the UK’s Financial Times had to take an interest (link may require registration), and Drudge had to link to it:

US Treasury stumbles selling Citi shares

The US government is in danger of missing its deadline of divesting all of its Citigroup shares by the year-end after a fall in stock market trading volumes prompted authorities to slow down sales in July and August.

The lull could prompt the US Treasury, which has a stake of about 17 per cent in Citi, to consider a share offering instead of selling the stock in small quantities in the market, according to bankers and analysts.

“The sales of Citigroup stock have slowed way down in July and August … The US Treasury will not finish its share sale by … the end of the year,” said Linus Wilson, a professor of finance at the University of Louisiana. “The only option for the Treasury if it wants to exit Citigroup before the year-end seems to be to conduct a large secondary offering of the stake.”

The government only seeks to sell shares equivalent to a small percentage of the overall trading volume in Citi to avoid depressing the price.

By the end of August, less than half of the government’s 7.7bn shares in Citi had been sold, with the average number of shares sold per day falling sharply, the latest official data show. The Treasury has until Thursday to complete the sale of 1.5bn shares before entering a “blackout period” ahead of Citi’s third-quarter results.

… The government’s continued involvement complicates Citi’s efforts to convince investors its troubled past is behind it.

The lack of stateside establishment media interest is, as far as I can tell, complete. None of the stories returned in a search on the company’s name at the Associated Press’s main site contained any information citing the government’s stock-selling difficulty. One item in a group of “Business Highlights” at least acknowledges that Citigroup “is still partly owned by taxpayers.”

A search on the company’s name at the New York Times also returned nothing relevant.

The Washington Post also has nothing relevant, though it does have an item also carried at the AP’s main site on bonuses that are being paid to Citi execs in (of all things) company stock. But there’s no mention of the problems the government is having in unloading its stake.

If Uncle Sam is having trouble unloading Citi, imagine the difficulties it might encounter pulling off its planned initial public offering of stock in Government/General Motors, an attempt which has conveniently been put off until after Election Day.

It would appear that the establishment press might be interested in keeping a lid on stories indicating that once the state gets in the business ownership door, it’s very hard for it to get out — assuming it even really wants to. Ultimately, that explains why one has to hope that the British and foreign press stay on top of developments such as these — and that Drudge keeps on reviewing their work.

Meanwhile, Tim Geithner says that TARP has worked out just fine, almost as if we’re in past-tense mode. Uh-huh.

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.