Blogito, Ergo Sum
by Gregg Calkins
24 March 2009, a Tuesday
The Washington Post reports:
Could you ever have a plan about anything in which that
would not be the case? Well, how about this headline item:
And we all know how safely we can rely on all of their
Here in Costa Rica we don’t eat that much
red meat on a regular basis:
Eating red meat increases the chances of dying prematurely, according to
the first large study to examine whether regularly eating beef or pork
The study of more than 500,000 middle-aged and elderly Americans found that
those who consumed about four ounces of red meat a day (the equivalent of
about a small hamburger) were more than 30 percent more likely to die during
the 10 years they were followed, mostly from heart disease and cancer.
Sausage, cold cuts and other processed meats also increased the risk.
Previous research had found a link between red meat and an increased risk
of heart disease and cancer, particularly colorectal cancer, but the new study
is the first large examination of the relationship between eating meat and
overall risk of death, and is by far the most detailed.
"The bottom line is we found an association between red meat and processed
meat and an increased risk of mortality," said Rashmi Sinha of the National
Cancer Institute, who led the study published yesterday in the Archives of
In contrast, routine consumption of fish, chicken, turkey and other poultry
decreased the risk of death by a small amount.
But pork is more common, I have to admit.
There are many explanations for how red meat might be unhealthy: Cooking
red meat generates cancer-causing compounds; red meat is also high in
saturated fat, which has been associated with breast and colorectal cancer;
and meat is high in iron, also believed to promote cancer. People who eat red
meat are more likely to have high blood pressure and cholesterol, which
increases the risk of heart disease. Processed meats contain substances known
as nitrosamines, which have been linked to cancer.
Although pork is often promoted as "white meat," it is believed to increase
the risk of cancer because of its iron content, Sinha said.
I don’t think I remember reading about that part
before. Well, I like fish and chicken well enough.
Howard Kurtz is so caught up in himself that he doesn’t get it:
Obama's coolness in front of the cameras--he's done everything but show up
in a leather jacket and shades--is helping him stay connected to the public
(although at this pace he runs the risk of overexposure). And yet there's a
growing sense that his young administration is in trouble. Why is that?
One reason, naturally, is that the economy remains in tatters. Another is
the sense that Obama hasn't quite gotten hold of the job. And then there's the
fast-forward news culture that started giving him poor-to-failing grades on
Day 50. So the narrative has moved from "wow, an African-American president!"
to "does this guy know what he's doing?"
For many of us, that was the question from the
beginning, but the watch-dog press preferred the “wow, an African-American
president!” and failed their responsibility.
The question is not why is the shift to that question so
early, on Day 50, but why was it ignored so long?
Howard continues with this report:
Politico declares that Obama has turned out to be a flawed messenger:
"Of all the pitfalls Barack Obama might face in the presidency, here is one
not many people predicted: He is struggling as a public communicator. The
sluggish and unsteady response to the uproar over AIG bonuses highlights a
larger problem of his White House: Obama's surprisingly uneven campaign to
educate people about the economic crisis and convince Washington and the
broader public that he is in command of circumstances. It was brilliant
communications skills that carried Obama to the presidency, with a national
campaign built on the strength of his personal story and the clarity of his
promise to transform politics. On the rare occasions when he was thrown on the
defensive, he quickly turned problems into opportunities and regained control
of his public image.
"What's different now? The polished phrases and unflappable delivery
haven't gone away. His prime-time news conference and speech to Congress drew
the usual praise. But the discipline and strategic focus of the campaign have
yet to move into the White House. The story of the day often catches the
president flat-footed or on the defensive -- and regularly undercut by fellow
Isn’t the image remarkably similar to that of a man in
over his head? Or a snake-oil salesman or a charismatic revivalist preacher who
sway their audiences simply by the persuasiveness of their patter and the
promise of change for the better if only you will buy and believe?
Andrew Sullivan, who emerged as a major O booster during the campaign, is
a bit less enthusiastic:
"There's a case for feeling that Obama is floundering. He has yet to solve
the banking crisis, his Treasury is horrifyingly understaffed and he somehow
allowed a bunch of incompetents and thieves at AIG to walk off with massive
bonuses under his nose. His stimulus package was too controlled by the
Democrats in Congress and is too spread out into 2010 to have a big impact
now, when it's most needed. He is trying to take on too many things at once --
from climate change and healthcare reform to engaging Iran and reforming
Pakistan. The aura of his campaign has waned as the poetry of insurgency has
segued into the deadly and often ungrammatical prose of government. He
seemingly still can't speak without a teleprompter . . .
"He inherited the worst downturn in decades -- and timing matters. If he
fails to relieve the decline, he will be thrown out and will probably deserve
it. Only the gloomiest economic depressives, though, believe things won't be
recovering by 2011."
Who remembers how Bush used to be trashed for the way he
talked...and even the way that he walked? Who remembers that Bush inherited a
falling economy? Who remembers that the worst of this downturn began the moment
the Democrats gained control of both houses of Congress?
To be sure, Obama wasn’t responsible for any of those
things, but he managed to get elected on a track record that was...on a track
The major, major problem that the media and the
Democrats face today is that this was essentially the Republican warning about
Obama, and they are still far too deeply invested in defending their own
positions to ever to be able to afford admitting the Republicans may have been
Typically we see gains in the ranks of the party out of
control of the presidency in non-presidential elections, and we might see a very
large swing in 2012.
The media love affair is over, says
"...the Obama press operation rivals the worst days of Scott McClellan.
Every day brings a new cringe-inducing encounter with Gibbs who dodges and
stalls, evades and robotically repeats the White House talking points. His
tactic of villifying specific media figures -- from Rush Limbaugh to Jim
Cramer -- is wearing thin."
Odd how Obama, who built his persona based upon his
“communication skills” should stay so long with such a poor communicator as his
And Howard Kurtz definitely gets defensive about this
Pajamas Media chief Roger L. Simon says it's ALL THE MEDIA'S FAULT
"Hello, children, you elected this guy. Take some responsibility!
"No, don't go complaining the people did that. You did it. Obama is your
man, your hero. You never vetted, never examined him in any depth at all, even
though the candidate had hardly any experience other than running for office.
(Oh, yes, he was a "community organizer." So was I, in a sense. You want to
You may think I’m beating a dead horse, but he lost me
the way he handled the ‘birth certificate’ issue and the way that the media has
treated it as if it were all the stuff of nonsense simply because they found
some fools they could concentrate upon.
Some of those fools played right into their hands by
arguing that the ‘birth certificate’ was forged or altered or somehow wrong. It
was not, of course, but that allowed the media to overlook the valid basic
Why won’t Obama revel his original birth
Officials for the State of Hawaii acknowledge that THEY
have seen the original, and the certified transcript Obama produced was accurate
in the details it contained, but in doing so they revealed what the media should
have pounced upon as a false flag, but did not.
Namely: there really was, in fact, an original birth
certificate somewhere which was being kept out of public view.
This is quite obvious, but obscured by the people who
made wild claims about Obama being a secret Muslim and all the rest of the
things they could come up with, and the media gladly tarred all of the
questioners with the same brush...all of you are nuts, they said, so the issue
is dead and behind us.
For me, the cover-up was revealing, because it showed
early how Obama thinks and what he discovered: he didn’t have to show anyone
anything and the media would not only let him get away with it but also
trivialize all of the honest questioners.
The original birth certificate exists, the State of
Hawaii has declared that to be so, but the American people have seen only a
certified transcript. So why can’t we see the original? How trivial a question
is that to resolve, anyhow, and how easily could it be done?
I don’t really expect it will contain anything new or
unusual, but the resistance raises a caution flag, especially in the case of a
man who promises such exceptional transparency. Shouldn’t that have tipped the
media off to his view of what the meaning of “is” is?
And what’s all this about a lack of regulation, as
a former SEC chairman points fingers?
On several issues, from the $64 billion Ponzi scheme perpetrated by Bernard
Madoff to the failure to regulate financial derivatives, Mr. Levitt admitted
his own culpability during his tenure as SEC chairman from 1993 to 2001.
“The Madoff problems” go back to the late 1980s and early 1990s. At least
five SEC chairman, including himself, were at the helm when Madoff-related
flags were flying. “There clearly was wrongdoing,” he said. “To some extent,
everyone of those chairs bears responsibility,” he said.
Mr. Levitt lauded investment manager Harry Markopolis, who tried to alert
the SEC as early as 1999 to the Madoff financial shenanigans.
Too bad W wasn’t president then so we could blame him.
Good to know. Biden was confused...but neither is
anyone else, he said, that’s why they all have different names...isn’t it?...
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