• Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for March 4th from 10:32 to 11:30

    These are my links for March 4th from 10:32 to 11:30:

    • Speaker Boehner, Allow Frank Buckles Into the Rotunda – Melt the Phones 202 225-0600 – think Speaker John Boehner is making a terrible mistake.

      The Speaker’s Office is blocking a request that Frank Buckles be allowed to lie in state in the rotunda of the United States Capitol.

      Frank Buckles is not just anybody. I agree that we should not let just anybody lie in state in the rotunda. The right should be reserved for a very special few.

      But Frank Buckles is not just a special few. He is the last of his kind. The very last.


      Agreed…..call the Speaker and let him know. 202 225-0600

    • Should Edwards Really Be Indicted? – Here is the problem I have with indicting John Edwards:  Apparently the prosecutors’ idea is that if Edwards used money from “Bunny” Mellon and others to keep his mistress stashed away and quiet, this was really a campaign expense and should have been paid for out of campaign funds. But suppose Edwards had paid for it with campaign funds. Don’t you think prosecutors would now be thinking of indicting him for an improper use of campaign funds?  (You can’t pay for most meals using campaign funds. You can’t buy mittens with campaign funds. Are mistresses going to OK?) …

      P.S.: That’s one of the problems with campaign finance laws: the categories are inherently slippery. Everything John Edwards did–every breath he took–for four years was designed to get him elected president, after all. His antipoverty work was designed to make him look good.


      Read it all and I disagree with Mickey here.

      Yes, he should.

      John Edwards should have used personal funds to stash away his mistress, but of course, his wife might have discovered this.

      Instead he apparently used sham transactions and his campaign accounts.

      Bad move for Edwards and he may well pay a criminal price – depending upon the applicable law and a jury.

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for March 3rd from 20:23 to 20:32

    These are my links for March 3rd from 20:23 to 20:32:

    • Jim DeMint: Public Broadcasting Should Go Private – When presidents of government-funded broadcasting are making more than the president of the United States, it's time to get the government out of public broadcasting.

      While executives at the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) and National Public Radio (NPR) are raking in massive salaries, the organizations are participating in an aggressive lobbying effort to prevent Congress from saving hundreds of millions of dollars each year by cutting their subsidies. The so-called commercial free public airwaves have been filled with pleas for taxpayer cash. The Association of Public Television Stations has hired lobbyists to fight the cuts. Hundreds of taxpayer-supported TV, radio and Web outlets have partnered with an advocacy campaign to facilitate emails and phone calls to Capitol Hill for the purpose of telling members of Congress, "Public broadcasting funding is too important to eliminate!"

      PBS President Paula Kerger even recorded a personal television appeal that told viewers exactly how to contact members of Congress in order to "let your representative know how you feel about the elimination of funding for public broadcasting." But if PBS can pay Ms. Kerger $632,233 in annual compensation—as reported on the 990 tax forms all nonprofits are required to file—surely it can operate without tax dollars.

      The executives at the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), which distributes the taxpayer money allocated for public broadcasting to other stations, are also generously compensated. According to CPB's 2009 tax forms, President and CEO Patricia de Stacy Harrison received $298,884 in reportable compensation and another $70,630 in other compensation from the organization and related organizations that year. That's practically a pittance compared to Kevin Klose, president emeritus of NPR, who received more than $1.2 million in compensation, according to the tax forms the nonprofit filed in 2009.



    • The Kochs fight back – Listing Who, What and Why – Faced with an avalanche of bad publicity after years of funding conservative causes in relative anonymity, the billionaire industrialist Koch brothers, Charles and David, are fighting back.

      They’ve hired a team of PR pros with experience working for top Republicans including Sarah Palin and Arnold Schwarzenegger to quietly engage reporters to try to shape their Koch coverage, and commissioned sophisticated polling to monitor any collateral damage to the image of their company, Koch Industries.

      At the same time, through their high-priced lawyers, private security detail and influential allies in conservative politics and media, the Kochs have played hard ball with critics and suspected foes.

      Young environmental activists who pranked them have been hit with a lawsuit seeking more than $100,000 in damages, and the leak of an internal document describing their political activities resulted in an investigation – complete with document analysis and interviews of suspects – that eventually identified the mole.

      Both their new openness and their aggressive – and sometimes secretive – tactics were on display before and during the Kochs’ closed-door, invitation-only four-day annual winter meeting of conservative donors and leaders that concluded Tuesday with a breakfast at the pricey resort that hosted it here in the Palm Springs suburbs.


      Read it all.

      I missed this piece a month ago when I covered the Koch Conference in Ranch Mirage

    • The Enquirer’s Edwards Source’s Story – Observations by Mickey Kaus – Everybody’s favorite Rielle Hunter source, Pigeon O’Brien, tells her story in the Huffington Post.  I learned some things: 1) A lot more people were investigating the Edwards/Hunter sex scandal than I’d thought. It wasn’t just the National Enquirer and Sam Stein of HuffPo. Other campaigns and other publications were calling O’Brien for confirmation. Which raises the question: If so much of the MSM knew or suspected the story was true, why was it subequently so easily cowed by the efforts of John and Elizabeth Edwards to cover it up? 2) After Edwards’ first semi-confession, when he swore he couldn’t be the father of Rielle Hunter’s child, MSM reporters took his side with O’Brien:

      Rielle was flown out of the country and Edwards “confessed” on television (the first confession, the one in which he denied he was Quinn’s father) but included a troubling aside that he’d been with her at the hotel late at night because of her “troubles.” The press leaped on this and my phone rang all night: She’s blackmailing him for Andrew Young’s baby! Appalled, I spoke out and was told again and again, off camera, “Why do you defend her? Edwards says she’s a slut. Who knows whose baby that is?”


      Read it all

      I first learned of the National Enquirer and the entire flap through reading Mickey's blog

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for March 3rd from 18:35 to 18:38

    These are my links for March 3rd from 18:35 to 18:38:

    • Think Ignorance Swings and Misses – Apparently the deconstructions I have been doing of Think Progress's attacks on Charles and David Koch and their company, Koch Industries, have hit home. That web site has now responded with a silly attack on me, titled "Blogger From Koch's Law Firm Defends Koch, Doesn't Disclose Ties." Lee Fang writes:

      Fighting back against public scrutiny, Koch Industries is relying on a small army of conservative bloggers, reporters, and lobbyists. Chief among them is John Hinderaker, a blogger at the "Powerline Blog." However, in his now daily defense of the Koch brothers, Hinderaker has failed to disclose that his law firm counts Koch Industries as a major client.

      I don't know about "major," but Koch Industries is a client of my firm. This is no secret; the firm's web site lists Koch as a client and identifies four lawsuits in which we have represented Koch entities. (I had no involvement in any of those cases.) When I mention companies, I never say whether they are clients of my law firm. There are two reasons for this. First, try to I keep my political/media activities separate from the firm's law practice, to the point of not even using a firm-owned computer to write posts.


      Read it all

    • How the John Edwards Affair Ended Up in the Enquirer – Lisa Druck was trouble. You'd run into her at Nell's where we all tended to hang out and she'd be in a panic. Some guy would be running from her, taxiing quickly to another club. She'd storm the bathrooms and you could hear her voice from behind the closed doors, operatically singing the latest drama.

      Yet we liked her. There was something charming and feral in her aggressive bubbliness. The seedier stuff bothered my prudish self, stories of strip poker and non-monogamy. But I was seeing her ex-boyfriend and if I wanted to keep him out of the riskier stuff, I had to like her. So I did.

      That was the 1980s. I grew up and years passed and Lisa Druck vanished from my life, only leaving behind her likeness in a shocking book by our friend Jay McInerney, Story Of My Life.

  • Al Gore,  John Edwards,  Rielle Hunter

    Al Gore Involved in Sex Scandal Says National Enquirer

    From the National Enquirer

    Well, they were right about John Edwards, Rielle Hunter and their baby.

    In a bombshell new development in the AL GORE sex scandal — broken EXCLUSIVELY earlier today by The ENQUIRER — the Oregon District Attorney says there’s “the possibility of a criminal prosecution.”

     In a statement just released by Multnomah County (OR.) D.A. Michael D. Schrunk, the official reveals that “our office was notified by the Portland Police Bureau that further investigation of this matter had been conducted by it in 2009 and we were provided with the reports from that further investigation.”

     Schrunk goes on to add: “If the complainant and the Portland Police Bureau wish to pursue the possibility of a criminal prosecution, additional investigation by the Bureau will be necessary and will be discussed with the Portland Police Bureau.”

    And, Al Gore and his wife of 42 years, Tipper, recently announced they were divorcing.

    So, who knows?

    But, if I were Gore I think I might want to get in front of this story, unlike John Edwards.