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Will the iSlate save journalism?

The tubez are all abuzz over Apple’s upcoming announcement on January 26.  Gadget enthusiasts all around the world are speculating about what Apple’s Steve Jobs is going to pack into the new iSlate, if that’s what it’s called.  There’s an online document of the alleged specs that have us scratching our heads and salivating at the same time.  The screen is either going to be 7.5 inches or 10 inches.  (Whip out your big ten inch, Steve!)  Other fantasy document specs include a 120 GB hard drive, a new OS called Clouded Leopard (Jeez, we should have seen that one comin’) and a built in projector.  OooooOOOOOoooo!  That one has piqued my curiosity.  It kind of makes sense too.  If the screen is only big enough to type on a touch screen, how will you view the content?  Ohhh, project it onto something.  D’oh!

Steve Jobs, if you’re out there, I promise to be your best friend if you let me review one of them big ten inches.  And I’ll be nice.  Because I don’t know if you’ve noticed this or not but there are a lot of gearheads out there who think a WiFi Newton on speed is not really necessary, especially if you have a laptop or iPhone.  I can envision busloads of schoolchildren dumping their lead weight laden backpacks for iSlates.  Maybe there’s a way to turn this sucker into an electronic notebook device for labrats that they can use to jot down how many moles of whatever they used for their reactions and that they can upload to a server later.  And I guess the skeptics haven’t been through an airport in the last 9 years where you have to dump the contents of your carry-ons whenever some authority figure demands it.  Who wouldn’t want the convenience of a neat  device you can carry in your hands that is a little bigger than a Kindle while you listen to your music through your stereo bluetooth as you stand in the Security line reading a document your downloaded from your cloud account or a copy of the NYTimes from the iTunes store?

Now, about that media content the iSlate is supposedly going to deliver in living color.  The newspaper industry is hurting.  What Craigslist hasn’t snatched from the classified section, the internet has downloaded for free.  Of course, the newspapers have brought some of this down on themselves.  Someone at the Times with a degree from Acme Business School made the idiotic decision to charge for the Op/Ed columnists a couple of years ago at the same time that  blogs started teeming with good Op/Ed writers while leaving (what should have been) the news content unguarded on the net.  The real assets of the newspaper business, should they care to invest in them, are the news collecting bureaus around the world.  There’s no substitute for actually being there, as we have learned from the Iranian protest movement and Twitter.

With Twitter, the news certainly looks fresh and has the immediacy of being there but there’s virtually no way to make sure that what is being posted is true and not a plant.  Unfortunately for the Times, there’s no way for us to tell if they’re just reporting propaganda either.  Remember Judy “Gorgeous Glass” Miller and her quaking Aspen friends who were all connected at the roots?  Was that a bizarre story or what?  When the paper that writes the stories becomes the story, it starts to lose credibility.  I know that I dropped my subscription specifically because of Judy Miller.  But it I had a subscription today, I would probably have cancelled it this morning when I found out that Arthur “Punch” (or is it “Pinch”?) Sulzberger, the Times publisher, is friends with Steve Rattner who is trying to primary Kirsten Gillibrand by running Harold Ford Jr. for Senator of NY.   Great!  Just what we need.  Another pandering male conservative Democrat because female senators are so plentiful. I don’t even know Pinch (or Punch) and I already dislike the fact that he feels he can arrogantly use the power of his mighty ink to scuttle Gillibrand simply because his friend Caroline Kennedy didn’t get the plum appointment when Hillary resigned.  It makes him look vengeful, petty, selfish and careless.  Sort of like Arthur Frobisher or some other self-centered and corrupt uber rich person with a conscience that only extends to his own personal wealthy clique.

Would I pay a subscription for the NYTimes on an iSlate?  I guess it would all depend on the content.  I lived for a couple of years without Paul Krugman or had to get his column via backdoor means.  I suppose if Punch (or Pinch) would leave the writing and editorializing to the real journalists and if I could be certain that those journalists weren’t part of some bizzare neocon plan to take over the world, I might cough up a few cents every day to read it on an iSlate.  But I hope that Jobs is busily getting the rights to a bigger movie library to project onto a nearby wall.  I wouldn’t bet my company on the likes of Punch or Rupert Murdoch.  They can’t be trusted.

126 Responses

  1. Agreed. The News is a marketable product. I would pay for online access to a good newspaper with good investigative journalism and a not too damn overt political slant (obviously absolute objectivity is out of the question). But honestly, every newspaper carries the same syndicated crap and Reuters and AP stuff, and even the supposedly deeply investigative stuff is biased fluff. But I’d pay $100 a year or maybe more for some solid investigative journalism.

    • In the US, the McClatchy newspapers are probably the best. They were the only ones who never fell for all the propaganda during the runup to the Iraq invasion.

  2. Oh, and any word on the demographics survey? Thanks for doing it, I’m really looking forward to seeing the results!

    • I had a post up yesterday but only I could see the damn bar charts. In the meantime, the rest of the gang is looking it over. I’ll try to put something together by Friday.

      • You have to export the charts (to png files) and then host those images on your site. From what I’ve seen from survey monkey, you can’t really link to charts on their site.

        • I’m telling you, it’s monkeys running that place. 🙂

        • Yeah, I know. It’s a pain in the ass. And if I’m going to export the images and upload them, I might as well just download the results into excel and reformat the font size on the legends while I’m at it. Or dump the whole damn thing into SIMCA or a zillion other things. Once you go down that road, where do you stop? I’ve already played with some of the crosstabs and could probably spend more time with them. I should just export the images and be done with it.

          • Yup. That’s what I thought when I read their user manual. Monkeys I’m telling you.

  3. There are certainly lots of rumors about the apple tablet and all sorts of deals and partnering with both newspapers and magazines. And I think similar things going on with other tablet like platforms. It sounds like it could be a life saving move for the newspaper, and to some extent, the magazine business if they do things right. That’s a big if for them given their record so far.

    I think the bigger thing to watch is what might happen with video based media on these things. Like the newspaper business, I think the whole cable industry will be going the way of the dodo. And frankly good riddance. So having deals with lots of broadcasters and production companies and distributers, and end user places like netflix could be the biggest thing with these sort of platforms. Well, those platforms and tv box type platforms obviously.

    Either way, it will be fun to watch this space. Just like with all the wild and crazy fun smartphones, esp. iPhone and Android, there are a lot of fun toys out there. And many of them are transforming some of the landscape.

    • OoooOOOoooo! I hadn’t thought about NetFlix. But what I want is access to foreign films and international news and books as well. I hate the artificial barriers that prevent me from buying a book in the UK that isn’t available in the US yet. That kind of thing drives me crazy.
      So, anyway, this thing is supposed to be a mindbender. Do you have any other ideas about how it might work? BTW, apple just bought or made a deal with a mobile ad provider, So, maybe that’s how content will be paid for. Though if I have to contend with ads on my islate ( oh, yes, it will be mine) that will make it a little less fun for me.

      • Bingo, the Apple purchase of the ad company is actually a big, big thing. It will allow for some new approaches to monetizing apps and services. They are nicely integrating the ad API’s and functionalities into the OS and developer kit. And of course they are getting the iPhone developer kit ready to handle the tablet as well, which means not just adjusting for the different screen size, but quite a few more really spiffy ways of doing things. You’re going to like it.

        • How do you know I’m going to like it? (she eyes him suspiciously)
          Do you know Steve personally?

          Can you introduce me?

          • I’ve met Steve, but don’t really know him. Notice I didn’t answer the first question. 🙂 Shhhh.

        • I just hope they actually invest in the hardware this time. My last three Macs have been POSs. Pretty design, bad actual industrial design.

          • A few bad apples….. OK, couldn’t resist that knee slapper. I did notice the quality go down a bit towards the end of their powerpc lines, but I haven’t had trouble with any intel machines.

      • I think media from around the world including books and films is the next big thing too. Everyone wants easy access to things. Current licensing models are in the way of users getting what they want. And users are willing to pay reasonable amounts. But it’s the distributers and licensing and old ways of doing business, old models, that are in the way. They just don’t work anymore. So opening that up will really be exciting. I think the whole concept or business model, or really mindset about how things are “published” is just wrong now. That goes for books, movies, music, etc. You don’t want to have something so in the way between a content producer and a consumer.

        • You wouldn’t happen to know how feasible it would be to incorporate a chemdraw widget into an app would you? We could really use a good electronic notebook.

          • That shouldn’t be hard at all since CambridgeSoft already has a MacOSX version. Of course you’d want to expand it to make use of a multitouch interface for molecular editing. I’d be happy to do that if I had access to their Mac port.

          • A viewer only would be trivial I’d think.

          • I did some fishing around. A viewer would be very easy as there are open source versions out there. So porting, say XDrawChem, would take a week or two I’d think. It would be viewer only, and may not be fancy initially.

          • I have no fucking clue what you two are talking about.

          • When you say viewer, are you suggesting that it wouldn’t be possible to draw structures into an app?

          • Yep. A viewer only app that can find and load models so you can look at them (and spin the around, etc.) would be very easy. Perhaps not that useful, but very easy.

            If there is an open source editor that has licensing that would allow it, then that wouldn’t be hard either. But I haven’t found one yet.

            Doing it from scratch to be a full editor would be time consuming, but certainly doable.

          • Never mind. The open source program does let you edit/draw. So yes, the full thing you would like can be put on an iPhone without too much effort. Perhaps on the order of a months worth of work.

          • roger that. Thanks!

        • It would have limited utility on an iphone. They’re just too small. But something the size of an iSlate would work. A month of work, eh?
          Interesting. So, are in cheminformatics or do you just dabble? Do I know you?

          • That makes sense. That’s a pretty small screen to do any serious editing. A tablet or notebook/netbook would be a much better fit.

            After looking through the software out there, I’d say you guys could use some serious help. I mean, has anyone heard of user interface design. OK, my UI snottiness is showing through.

            In another life I did genetic engineering sequencer software. But now just any kind of software. Usually related to graphics.

          • My BFF has created an application using a browser and incorporating a chemdraw applet. Then he hooked it up to the corporate database and created some chemistry centric forms. When I worked at the same company, I used it all of the time and it made my life sooooo much easier. It wasn’t an electronic notebook though. Nowadays, you can’t write what he wrote for a corporate entity. They hire Accenture to do that for you and mess it up.
            If the BFF’s employment status isn’t renewed by Pfizer in the next couple of months, maybe he’ll have the time to work on an islate interface that he can turn into a cash cow. I don’t know what will happen to the custom app he wrote. Most of the chemists still use it but they’re getting laid off soon. I guess the SGI it’s running on will just go to sleep like HAL.

          • If that happens, you have my email address, I’d be happy to work with him on it.

          • thanks!

        • That tablet looks very nice, but it also looks like something that would be easy to smash against the coffee table if something I didn’t like came on the screen. And for the price..

  4. It’s Pinch, son of Punch.

  5. I’m starting to understand my grandmother’s reaction to VCRs. It’s just a matter of time before one of my kids buys me the latest tech gadget and I end up telling them it got lost or stolen because I don’t want to admit I can’t figure out how to use it and don’t see much point in learning how anyway.

    • Oh, so *that’s* what happened to the ipod I gave my mom.

    • I’m going back to stone tablet and chisel.

    • You kids and your new fangled gadgets. Why when I was a kid we made our own toys. Out of mud and straw. And we liked it. 🙂

      • You guys had toys to play with?

        We had to play with ourselves.

      • We didn’t even have mud and straw. We pretended to have mud and straw. We pretended to be pigs and pretended to build houses out of pretend mud and straw. We also just stared into space a lot.

        • You had space?

        • We played house ( and school and hospital ) in the box the refrigerator came in.
          And we were happy.

          • we didn’t have a box. We had lilac bushes which made great Indian Tee Pees for our games of Cowboys and Indians….but we were all Indians. We didn’t have any cowboys, just foraging for berries and training imaginary wild horses and stuff.

            I feel sorry for my kids who had actual toys and sports equipment and rules about how to play with them,

  6. LOL! It just occured to me what Steve Jobs might be doing with the iSlate. He is going to whup Microsoft’s ass. Users will create their own apps and interfaces for everything, not just for little iphone devices. There will be an app for everything. You’ll never have to use Microsoft again.
    Except at work.
    Ahh, the final frontier….

    • I’m not sure they worry about Microsoft so much any more. I think Google is more on their mind these days.

      • Then they’re both making Microsoft irrelevent. Except at work where the IT nazis would be apoplectic if someone hooked a Mac to the intranet. No, no, we can’t have that. Can’t you just hear them screaming like vampires at the first light of dawn?
        The the number of apps they would have to keep track of would make their heads explode. They’d be years behind in the QCing of everything. So, either the google-islate age is going to force them to evolve or we will be stuck with Windows XP forever.

        • If a company didn’t use Microsoft, they wouldn’t really need much of an IT department. So if the IT department is who decides, they won’t change.

          • You’re thinking of desktops only I hope? Since most of real IT is either in or moving back into the glass house, it’s not going away.

          • Yea, I’m mostly thinking about the parts of IT that support desktops/laptops. Not he parts that run servers, networks, communications, actual server content, etc., etc. I’ll call those real IT departments. What desktops/laptops/smartphones people use and what applications they use should be irrelevant to a real IT department. As long as certain minimal standards in file formats and the like are supported, they shouldn’t care if it’s a linux box running openoffice or a mac running iwork or something else running web based google apps or whatever.

          • A company should care about what brand of computer I use exactly as much as they care about what brand of shirt I wear.

          • I think they should care less than about the shirt. I work for a company that, like most, has a standard laptop and apps that they stick in the image. Of course, they pay for it so I don’t care since I don’t do real work on the things. Most of the time I use it to access our servers via the network.

          • Companies often supply equipment like computers and desks and the like. But different jobs have very different needs. IT departments are often geared towards the front office business types who need spreadsheets and the like (and who write the paychecks, which probably has something to do with this issue). So when they go to the art department or the engineering department or the genetic sequencing laboratory or the CAD department or others and say, you’re getting what the accountant gets. That makes no sense.

            Then you get things like: my job is to port some software to a mac. IT department says OK, we’ll give you a dell for that. You say, um, I’m porting to a mac, so I need a mac. IT department says we don’t support macs. I say, are you a robot? Their head blows up. 🙂

      • I hear the Google i type of phone is not up to the Iphone’s speed, so sayeth the Geek around here in the papers.

        • Nexus One? Faster processor but similar memory I believe which is rate limiting. Android hasn’t really taken off as a developer platform yet, not like iPhone. Google is counting more on advertising and their cloud services, Apple still more on hardware and custom apps, both fighting it out for original content which Google may crowdsource more and Apple will do more deals. Apple has the edge imo.

          • Yea, the Nexus has a faster processor, but the entry level has less memory for some reason. But if you get a model with more memory it should feel faster theoretically. Of course then Apple will get a new model, then Google, then Apple… all better for us.

            I agree, there are different approaches here. Google is taking a Microsoft approach of having others make different platforms and they just make the software. In the long run developers will have some of the same problems they have with Microsoft: it’s a harder target to pin down because there are lots of very different platforms with a wide range of configurations.

            But in the end, like with most things, it’s not quality or even content, it’s marketing and PR. See for example the 2008 primary. /snark. So who knows what will happen. And of course let’s not forget Blackberry who is still dominate.

            I’m happy either way as I develop on all the platforms. So let the the games begin.

          • It is fascinating to hear you talk GEEK!

          • 🙂

  7. There would be no Apple if Microsoft hadn’t saved them to avoid antitrust problems a few years back, and as someone who has been screwed big time by Apple, I can testify they can’t be trusted either. iSlate= Avatar=major hype, underwhelming experience.

    • Whatever floats your boat on choices. But where did you get that MS saved Apple bit. That’s pretty funny. And you know a tablet from Apple will be underwhelming already without having seen it. That’s pretty amazing. Could you let us in on some stock prices over the next few weeks. That could really come in handy.

    • I’m sorry you had such a negative experience but I LOVE my Macs and iPhone. If I wasn’t forced to use a PC at work, I never would. Things that touch Microsoft will never touch mine.
      As for Avatar, it was worth the hype and the experience was delightful. The story wasn’t innovative but the graphics were. It exceeded my expectations. It would have been perfect with CrystalEyes.

    • With Apple, there is before and after Steve. After Jobs was ousted, Apple wasn’t as special. Things really deteriorated under The Diesel, which is when I had a few jobs there, although Apple and SGI have been my favorite places to work in the high-tech industry.

      Whenever I’ve seen Steve around P.A., he always smiles. At the shareholders’ meetings, he discounts their efficacy but soon after the voting is announced (always in his favor), he gets involved. When I was listening to the audible book “The Second Coming of Steve Jobs” a few years ago, I was surprised to hear that getting an interview to work at NeXt when it was Job’s startup was a Silly Valley status symbol. NeXt called me and I turned them down for the interview. I asked if they had a contract, I wasn’t interested in full-time work. I love what Jobs has created, but wouldn’t want to work too closely with him. I admire the hell out of him, but he and I would clash.

      Microsoft sued Apple to get the source code so that it could go from MS-DOS (ripped-off command-based technology) to a graphical-user interface. Took 11 years for Windows 95 to debut after the Mac OS (1984).

      I’ve been tracking Silly Valley since the early 80s. Mainframes to iPhones.
      The first computer I really loved was a Mac SE. I have loved all of my Macs, esp. my 2ci. I did buy three Dells but the experience was really underwhelming. My first Dell laptop ran Windows 95. 98 came out a few months later so I bought and installed it. The computer ran really slow. When I called tech support, I was told that 98 required 64 MB of memory, and that I had invalidated my warranty by installing it. I am used to installing more memory in Macs as I need it, but turns out that my very expensive top-of-the-line Dell laptop was capped at 40 MB. Gave it to my niece to use for a word processing in college.

      I retrofitted my much earlier Mac laptop for wi-fi (non-existent when it came out) and increased its RAM to 64 MB. After Steve returned and started using Intel chips, I can run the one Windows program I need on a partition running Windows XP. Even the Windows interface approaches elegance on my iMac. I never let that side online, so have avoided the viruses that took down my last Dell. I have a MacBook Pro that has XP running in a partition for business purposes as well, but keep my beloved MacBook Air Microsoft free.

      IMO Windows has been a big drain on the American economy, esp. American business. You get what you pay for.

    • Heh. Yeah, the whole Apple – good! Microsoft – bad! trope is tiresome. They both have their pluses and minuses but, at the end of the day, they and Google too, are just money grubbing corporations looking to sell you stuff.

  8. I already gave this piece of info to RedDragon but are there any other Native Americans or people interested in Native American affairs here who know more about the IRS auctioning Crow Creek land to non-Indians? This seems like an interesting and important story that will obviously fall under the radar for most people since the mainstream media could care less about Native American affairs.

  9. If the papers want more people to pay for their content, they should stop paying the Maureen Dowds et al. to write trash.

  10. I’ve been waiting impatiently for the iSlate. Hubby and I are big Mac fans. He still has his original first Macintosh (circa 1984) in the garage somewhere! Remember the box with the tiny screen?

    I am hoping against hope it will have both computer and e-reading capability. I have wanted a Kindle for ages, but was holding out to see what Apple came up with. I’m a heavy reader (hours at a time) and I CANNOT read books on an LED screen. Eye strain, headaches, etc. The e-ink screens (like Kindle) are so much easier on the eyes – I can read those just like print.

    I’ve been crossing my fingers that perhaps Apple will have found a way to switch displays back and forth. If that’s a feature, I’ll buy one in an instant. If not, I guess I’ll stick with my powerbook and spring for a Kindle or Nook.

    • You bring up a good point. The non backlit screens like used in “electric ink” type systems can be better on the eyes. The LED backlit LCD screens are much better than the older backlighting used in LCD screens on the eyes, but not as good as the e-ink type. I suspect they will use the same technology they’re currently using, but I’m not sure.

      • My latest powerbook (new at Christmas) is much better than the old one as far as eye strain goes, but I still can’t do non-stop hours of novel reading. News and blogs are different: I read those in spurts, looking away a lot. But real reading I stick my nose in, get lost, and don’t come up for air.

        *sigh* I’m hoping they’ll find a way to do both LCD and e-ink, but likely not. It may be technologically impossible to “switch” like that, for all I know.

        • The newer powerbooks are now using the much greener LED backlighting for LCD screens. That’s probably what you have that you notice is better. It might help if there are more controls for contrast and darkness, etc. like on a powerbook, but it probably won’t be as good. But I don’t know about the screen technology, so maybe we’ll be surprised.

  11. The rumor mill has it that Pinch and Princess Caroline have been an item.

  12. From WaPo:

    Unlike Carter and Clinton, however, Obama took office at a moment when the intellectual force of laissez-faire economics was plainly spent. His reform agenda was nothing if not ambitious: health care for all, financial re-regulation, climate-change legislation and a Keynesian stimulus to revive a wounded economy. But as the first anniversary of his inauguration approaches, it’s clear that despite the impending enactment of a genuinely epochal expansion of health care, a progressive era has not burst forth. Major legislation languishes or is watered down. Right-wing pseudo-populism stalks the land. The liberal base is demobilized. The ’30s or the ’60s it ain’t.

    The reasons for the stillbirth of the new progressive era are many and much discussed. There’s the death of liberal and moderate Republicanism, the reluctance of some administration officials and congressional Democrats to challenge the banks, the ever-larger role of money in politics (see reluctance to challenge banks, above), the weakness of labor, the dysfunctionality of the Senate — the list is long and familiar. But if there’s a common feature to the political landscapes in which Carter, Clinton and now Obama were compelled to work, it’s the absence of a vibrant left movement.

    The America over which FDR presided was home to mass organizations of the unemployed; farmers’ groups that blocked foreclosures, sometimes at gunpoint; general strikes that shut down entire cities, and militant new unions that seized factories. Both communists and democratic socialists were enough of a presence in America to help shape these movements, generating so much street heat in so many congressional districts that Democrats were compelled to look leftward as they crafted their response to the Depression. During Lyndon Johnson’s presidency, the civil rights movement, among whose leaders were such avowed democratic socialists as Martin Luther King Jr. and James Farmer, provided a new generation of street heat that both compelled and abetted the president and Congress to enact fundamental reforms.

    In America, major liberal reforms require not just liberal governments, but autonomous, vibrant mass movements, usually led by activists who stand at or beyond liberalism’s left fringe. No such movements were around during Carter and Clinton’s presidencies. For his part, Obama won election with something new under the political sun: a list of 13 million people who had supported his campaign. But he has consistently declined to activate his activists to help him win legislative battles by pressuring, for instance, those Democratic members of Congress who have weakened or blocked his major bills. To be sure, loosing the activists would have brought problems of its own: Unlike Roosevelt or Johnson, who benefited from autonomous movements, Obama would be answerable for every loopy tactic his followers employed. But in the absence of both a free-standing movement and a legion of loyalists, Congress isn’t feeling much pressure from the left to move Obama’s agenda.

    The construction of social movements is always a bit of a mystery. The right has had great success over the past year in building a movement that isn’t really for anything but that has channeled anew the fears and loathings of millions of Americans. If Glenn Beck can help do that for the right, can’t, say, Rachel Maddow and Keith Olbermann help build a movement against the banks or for jobs programs? It might well be too little too late, but without left pressure from below, the Obama presidency will end up looking more like Carter’s or Clinton’s than Roosevelt’s or Johnson’s.

    The reason for the stillbirth of the new progressive era we were promised in 2008 is because the left let itself be co-opted by Obama.

    • This person is really confused. Can you even imagine KO or Maddow trying to lead a movement against the banks or for jobs? They don’t believe in anything.

      • I was catching up on the Morning thread and someone said something about people trying to get Ed Schultz to run for Dorgan’s seat… yeah that’ll help… Schultz, Tweety, Olbermann… your new Congress of Bozos at work, same as your old Congress of Bozos but with more Spittle Comments to broadcast on C-Span. Hey and if Maddow ran and won, she could feign indignation at Stupakistan for all of two seconds and then make teabagger jokes on the Senate floor.

        • Glenn Beck feeds a movement that isn’t about anything but channels fear and loathing because he’s unprincipled and likes attention and is a demagogue, and that’s the easiest route. KO and Maddow are unprincipled and demogugues and trying to get attention, so they’re one step away from forming Shay’s Rebellion and bringing us a New Deal. Why didn’t we think of this sooner! With TV, everyone can skip the activist part and go straight to sell out.

          • the protest signs of the Keef and Rachel movement would hopefully be better than the teabots…. they’d spell “Sarah Palin is a C—” correctly… that’s all that maters, right?

          • They can also find many more words to use to convey hatred. It’s the skins and the shirts pointless turf war over nothing, now with more SAT words.

          • It’s the new American presidential ballot

            hopeful : change :: compassionate : conservatism

    • So Harold says it’s the liberal peasants fault for not marching in the streets. Well, of course it couldn’t be Obama’s fault, or the machine that pulls his strings, or the oligarchy owners of that machine, or media including him also owned by the same oligarchy, or the fact that the Democratic party is an illusion and nothing more than the other branch of the corporatist party. Nope, it’s the people’s fault.

      • it’s always the peasants fault… It’s trickle down personal responsibility.

        (Really it’s the activist left’s fault for playing along to get along in ’08, but they always want to blame the peasants for not joining them… why would average jane and joe on the left want to join the Activist Janes of our day who are more worried about drawing in affluent readership and being considered Opinion Makers, rather than actually, I don’t know, passing liberal reform.)

    • Notice how he equates Carter and Clinton’s presidency as opposed to Roosevelt’s or Johnson’s. So he thinks Clinton was every bit the failure as Carter. Interesting but completely batshit crazy view.

    • He doesn’t ask himself WHY Obama is not using his 13 million activists.

    • Progressives were left at the altar from the inauguration, and they still don’t get it. In petulant disbelief, they blame Rahm they blame Nancy, but they still don’t blame the people who fed them the koolaid in the first place, because then they’d look stupid.

  13. Speaking of delusional, Bob Shrum says the Ds are fine, just follow the business section:

    “I think this [talk of Democratic trouble] is all instant analysis,” said longtime strategist Bob Shrum. “And you know, this election, the outcome is going to be determined not by these events but about where we are economically in the summer and whether we pass health care which we will. And I don’t think the Republicans will have anything to say… if the economy recovers and say we are at 7.5 percent unemployment. People who want to know what is going to happen in 2010 you should read the business page, not the politics page.”

    • This is completely unscientific analysis on my part but MY gut says that the Democrats are in trouble. It’s subtle, it’s flying under their radar. But they are in trouble. Look to the burbs.

      • this is why per Gallup……………………………………..in the first three months of 2009, the party’s support stood at nearly 52 percent while in the final quarter of the year it had fallen to 47 percent….and the 52 was after the 30 percent of the disaffected base had already booked

    • Shrum has such a wonderful record of election failure. Everyone should listen to that hack? 😯

  14. Me, no way I pay the NYT a dime until Judy’s old roommate resigns and maybe never their lies killed many innocents.

    With all this talk about why Dodd quit, I find it odd no one mentions his endorsement of the One and his dishing of the Clinton’s during the debates as a major reason for his demise. The abandonment Dodd by the disaffected former Dem Base is obvious.. I’m thinking these fools (press and Dem puppeteers) really may be in denial about the loss of power in the Party as a result of their scam Primary. My view Dem pols like McCaskill-Daschle-Clyburn types should plan on a continued accounting by the beakaway former base for their bad Dem on Dem behaviors during that shell game.

  15. The projector is the biggie. Think about getting rid of your cable or satellite provider. Watch HD television from your over the air attennae, many movies and cable programs are available from the internet and maybe projected on a wall for viewing? Goodbye Comcast, and take your monopoly with you.

  16. Okay, so I usually cruise over to the rightie blogs in the morning, to see what the other side is saying. I found this gem, and it made me laugh (in a sad way.)

    Sometimes the enemy sees the truth very clearly. This person is all in favor of keeping Gitmo, but has this to say about Obama’s waffling:

    Quit whining about closing Guantanamo, and close the damn thing. It either is useful or not. The American people are getting sick and tired of this sort of “Bush made me keep it open even though it is counter-productive” whining. If Guantanamo is a recruiting tool, then by all means stop the recruiting tool. Instead, we get the impression that these incredibly directionless people have discovered that Guantanamo has both utility and yet is a political liability among their more fervent supporters, and therefore they wish to continue its usefulness while blaming Bush for its unpopularity.

    Dead on.

  17. One of my favorite comments of the day:

    with respect to aviation security, we have gone from Tweedledum to Tweedledumber.

  18. B0bots surely are fed up with the results of their earlier enthusiasm

  19. The other day someone posted a comment here saying Obama was using the crib sheet to get 4 snowcones–but it was actually 19 snowcones according to Tapper’s blog, etc. So I can see why Obama needed a list–and hey, at least when he’s reading from paper he looks less like a metranome.

  20. ahhhh Politico is reporting that Pres Clinton will be in oval Office today at 1:30 hmmmmmm….

  21. WaPo: “Emily’s List founder Malcolm steps aside”


    “Ellen Malcolm will continue to be involved as chairwoman of the board of Emily’s List but will hand over day-to-day management of the vast network of political donors and activists and its political operations to the new president, Stephanie Schriock.”

    • Stephanie Schriock…that’s Franken’s campaign manager.

      Jane Hamsher’s take, FWIW:

      So I’m not too surprised that Malcolm is stepping down as the head of the organization:

      “We’ve set the stage for making history,” said Malcolm, 62, describing how in its 25 years Emily’s List helped more than 100 female candidates win election to federal and state offices. “We’ve had astonishing victories. The U.S. House is a very different place today than it was when we began. The world has changed.”

      “The US House is a very different place today than it was when we began.” Here, let me translate for you:

      Every single person we elected is determined to vote for the biggest setback to abortion rights in my lifetime, and I don’t want to be here and eat shit for it from big donors when it happens.

    • I remember going to the parties of the Emily’s List and the speeches and the talk of one day and then the day came and SILENCE.

  22. Yet another tidbit to file under Obama… a Showhorse (not a Workhorse)…

    Brian Lamb on Bill Press :

    “We are an independent journalistic institution, and the president, when he was a candidate, had no right to assume that we would cover anything. That was the first thing. We were used as kind of a political football during the campaign. We obviously would cover these negotiations. The only time we’ve been allowed to cover the White House part of it is one hour inside the East Room, which was just a show-horse type of thing…

  23. Friday, January 8th: Hillary to speak on Women’s Health
    January 5, 2010 by Wonk the Vote

    Can we do a post on this for Friday, find a live feed and blog about it live?

    DAK, RD, Myiq2x, SOD…anyone? Purty Pleeeeze? 🙂

  24. This is kind of interesting. Hillary’s hosting a dinner tonight for the technorati, pretty much all Obamafans from the campaign.


    Also, Obama scheduled to speak live at 4:30 on security.

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