Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

A Few More While I Have Time

with one comment

* Really interesting development: Pakistan’s Supreme Court says eunuchs must be allowed to identify themselves as a distinct gender in order to ensure their rights. Via Pam.

* Via Kottke: Jim Lehrer’s rules for journalism.

* Do nothing I cannot defend.
* Cover, write and present every story with the care I would want if the story were about me.
* Assume there is at least one other side or version to every story.
* Assume the viewer is as smart and as caring and as good a person as I am.
* Assume the same about all people on whom I report.
* Assume personal lives are a private matter, until a legitimate turn in the story absolutely mandates otherwise.
* Carefully separate opinion and analysis from straight news stories, and clearly label everything.
* Do not use anonymous sources or blind quotes, except on rare and monumental occasions.
* No one should ever be allowed to attack another anonymously.
* And, finally, I am not in the entertainment business.

* ‘Black Man Given Nation’s Worst Job’: Steve Benen evaluates Obama’s first year.

FDR had to address the Great Depression, but in the wake of Hoover, there were plenty of Republicans willing to work with the Roosevelt administration, and a discredited GOP didn’t put up much of a fight. Three decades later, LBJ had a bold, large-scale agenda, but there were still moderate Republicans on the Hill. Neither Roosevelt nor Johnson had to worry about mandatory supermajorities to pass legislation — Filibuster Mania was still decades away.

It’s why I tend to consider the demands on Obama to be almost comical. First, Obama was tasked with rescuing the economy, overseeing two costly wars, improving a deteriorating job market, addressing a crushing debt, and fixing health care, energy policy, immigration, a housing crisis, a collapsing U.S. auto industry, the Gitmo mess, and America’s reputation around the world.

Second, Obama is expected to do all of this without Republican support on anything. The GOP simply pretended that its spectacular failures didn’t discredit the party.

And third, Obama, for the first time in American history, is told that every one of his proposals has to get 60 votes in the Senate to proceed, making it impossible to do much of anything unless Joe Lieberman and Ben Nelson approve.

* And Mark Lynas explains his take on Copenhagen.

Copenhagen was a disaster. That much is agreed. But the truth about what actually happened is in danger of being lost amid the spin and inevitable mutual recriminations. The truth is this: China wrecked the talks, intentionally humiliated Barack Obama, and insisted on an awful “deal” so western leaders would walk away carrying the blame. How do I know this? Because I was in the room and saw it happen.

One Response

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  1. That decision really took some balls.

    Christ, I Need A Drink

    December 23, 2009 at 9:38 pm


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