Thursday, February 4, 2010

California Bender

The Morning Joe Rebuttal for February 4th, 2010


1) Andrew Ross Sorkin is in the room and AIG gets a pass on it’s bonus announcement. I know it was yesterdays news, but Sorkin and Huffington need to have an open debate about this every time they’re on the show. I’m confused, you have gone with the ‘greatest transfer of wealth’ thing now to the point that it’s part of the show’s mantra. That is great news for America. But today’s failure to launch is a serious writing error.

I know Jon Stewart and the book party make for very entertaining television, I know that jet lag coming this way is a bohemeth (I’ve warned you about it), but on a day where the AIG bonus gets released, the Goldman bonus creates a secondary market to sell the bonus stock earlier than promised, and the sovereign debt of 5 European countries finds previously unseen volatility, Mika had better sell 6.54 trillion books to equate the allocation of airtime. This isn’t the Today Show, and the Grove is only so big.

2) John Heilemann is the one guy explaining Obama better than Jon Stewart. His analysis can be paraphrased that ‘the administration didn’t want to marry any specific in health care reform early as to not appear to have a setback moving to the final bill’. Boy, how did that work out? Nelson is toxic, Lieberman is toxic, the caucus meeting yesterday was an absolute wake.

Joe Scarborough and I agree on 9 out of 10 fronts on health care at this point, that the stinking pile of stimulus II that came out of the Senate and falsely claimed to be health care reform needs to die, that the Obama resurrection of any of the back room deals are the real toxicity, and that all of this is getting in the way of the simple things we could do to objectively fix health care the fastest and have it move towards Swiss or Dutch models, hyperefficient private markets with strict rules of the road nationwide.

Going back to the Obama back room deals, this is incredibly troubling. I guess I’m more on the Jon Stewart side of things that I still can’t tell if he is playing us or using a stiff upper lip to hide an absolute fiasco on multiple fronts. A devout Democratic conspiracist would say that the last big part of the Bush – Cheney coup was to leave crippling multi front crises for the next administration then sit on the sidelines and point out how bad the state of things was. But I’m worried about something else. Why is it Obama and Eli Lilly, Obama and CIGNA, Obama and Goldman?

Joe Scarborough, despite jet lag, has this issue on his front burner at this point, but his subscribers are left guessing, similar to how they’re left to guess about Obama, if JS is ready to do the people’s work exploring this difficult and dangerous land.

3) Like the San Diego Chargers-owning Spanos family, part of the native flight out of Stockton, California includes yours truly. Having spent time at the very top as the ‘murder capital of the world’ in a neck in neck battle with Washington DC, and at the very bottom next to Yuba City as the worst place to live in the United States, Stockton is an extremely troubled place.

Those elements, the literacy and higher education elements that make up that quality of life equation, the really under reported lawlessness and additionally the national economic peril have combined to give Stockton a new distinction: “foreclosure capital of the US’. 60 minutes did a report verifying this. But even 60 minutes didn’t take a second to look at the 25 years of trouble that preceded the mortgage dilemma as a possible causal factor.

When Mike Barnicle asked Barbara Boxer to speak to Stockton’s citizens today, and she gave a typically incumbent answer that solved nothing and talked about how ‘she was a fighter’, you just felt the backlash brewing didn’t you. If Carly Fiorina gave a bilingual speech tomorrow underneath the incredible infrastructure that is Stockton’s inland port, the largest of it’s kind in the world, Boxer would be toast.

Barbara Boxer, you have to talk to them, or you are Coakley redux, because it seems like your fighting for your job, not for Stockton, California the vanquished.

Don’t look for pawns there, you’ll get limo-jacked.

That’s all for today, see you tomorrow.

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