New Year’s Eve Reads

Good morning!

Today we begin to say good bye to 2010 and the first decade of the millennium and century!    What a decade and what a year it has been!  I don’t know about you, but just the last five years alone have turned my life upside down. (Think Hurricane Katrina, BP Oil Tsunami, and the financial crisis that has empowered thugs like Governexorcist Jindal to enforce absolute budget austerity on Louisiana and higher education.)   Despite all that, we’re going to have an Airing of the Gratitude thread as part of the-Little-Blog-That-Could’s New Year’s Celebration.  I’ve bought my black eyed peas and cabbage.  Now, I’m making my list of things that I resolve to appreciate for the thread.  I’d like to invite you to think about yours too and join in.   A lot of my gratitude comes under the heading of my daughters, dad and sister, and my friends.  That includes you !  We’re a blogging community that was forged from some really tough political times.

Meanwhile, here are some headlines to gear you up for the coming year and decade.  May things improve for the better!!  May peace and sanity prevail!!  May every one’s health and circumstances improve tremendously!  Many, many  blessings to each and every one of you!

Are you pessimistic or optimistic about the coming year?  A CNN poll  shows a lot of people are optimistic about the the world outlook, but less so about their personal situation. Men are much more optimistic than women.  Where do you fit in?

The Senate appears to have reached its limit on perpetually trying to find 60 votes for cloture and taking every ‘threat’ of a filibuster seriously.  Brian Beutler at TPM is following the reform movement and the possible hurdles it faces.

The consensus package will aim to put an end to “secret holds” (anonymous filibuster threats) and disallow the minority from blocking debate on an issue altogether. Those two reforms are fairly straightforward. The third is a bit more complex. Udall, along with Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), say there’s broad agreement on the idea to force old-school filibusters. If members want to keep debating a bill, they’ll have to actually talk. No more lazy filibusters.

But how would that actually work? In an interview Wednesday, Udall explained the ins and outs of that particular proposal.

“What we seem to have the most consensus on, is what I would call… a talking filibuster,” Udall told me. “Rather than a filibuster which is about obstruction.”

As things currently stand, the onus is on the majority to put together 60 votes to break a filibuster. Until that happens, it’s a “filibuster,” but it’s little more than a series of quorum calls, votes on procedural motions, and floor speeches. The people who oppose the underlying issue don’t have to do much of anything if they don’t want to.

Here’s how they propose to change that. Under this plan, if 41 or more senators voted against the cloture motion to end debate, “then you would go into a period of extended debate, and dilatory motions would not be allowed,” Udall explained.

As long as a member is on hand to keep talking, that period of debate continues. But if they lapse, it’s over — cloture is invoked and, eventually, the issue gets an up-or-down majority vote.

DDay at FDL has a thread up that offers a more detailed explanation.  This includes a bit on what is being called ‘continuous debate’ which sounds a lot like that Jimmy Stewart movie “Mr. Smith goes to Washington” or what every one was hoping for when Bernie Sanders started talking a few weeks ago.

After 41 Senators or more successfully maintain a filibuster by voting against cloture, they would have to hold the floor and go into a period of extended debate. Without someone filibustering holding the floor, cloture is automatically invoked, and the legislation moves to an eventual up-or-down vote, under this rule change.

This would institute the actual filibuster. The Majority Leader would have the capacity, which Harry Reid says he doesn’t have now, to force the minority to keep talking to block legislation. It becomes a test of wills at this point – whether the minority wants to hold out for days, or whether the majority wants to move to other legislation.

Here’s hoping we can fix our broken government that is driven by corporate cash and interests and railroaded by imperious Senators.  I’m not very hopeful that congress can actually fix itself, but I guess we’ll see.  I will say that I do think Tom Udall is a good man. He’s one of the people that is fighting for an improved process.

I still have Louisiana and New Orleans on my mind right now. We have a new headline in our ongoing BP Oil Gusher Saga. This is from Raw Story. It appears the company that owns the rig–Transocean–is refusing to co-operate with the federal oil spill probe. I just want to find out what went wrong so we don’t ever repeat it.  I’m sure all they are thinking about is the upcoming lawsuits.

Transocean said the U.S. Chemical Safety Board does not have jurisdiction in the probe, so it doesn’t have a right to the documents and other items it seeks. The board told The Associated Press late Wednesday that it does have jurisdiction and it has asked the Justice Department to intervene to enforce the subpoenas.

Last week, the board demanded that the testing of the failed blowout preventer stop until Transocean and Cameron International are removed from any hands-on role in the examination. It said it’s a conflict of interest. The request is pending.

Our economy is in sad shape down here and a good part of it is due to Transocean’s role in destroying livelihoods and life around the Gulf of Mexico.  Human lives aren’t the only thing still struggling from the gulf gusher.  Here’s some local news on that.

Scientists at the institute of Marine Mammal Studies in Gulfport are studying why two endangered manatees died near the Gulf Coast in the past two weeks.

According to the Institute’s Executive Director Dr. Moby Solangi, cold water killed the manatees, but they should have migrated to warmer water.

Scientists are finding an unusually large number of Gulf of Mexico animals out of place since the BP oil spill began.

“It is no different than having a forest fire,” Dr. Solangi said Thursday. “The oil spill expanded, it went thousands of square miles and as their habitat shrunk, these animals moved to areas that were not affected.”

The problem, according to Dr. Solangi, is those unaffected areas were also unfamiliar to the animals.

Too many turtles, for instance, wound up in waters off the Mississippi coast, where they didn’t understand the food supply.

300 turtles died in Mississippi.

Many more were caught by fishermen.

“In the past years, we would get one or two or maybe three animals, this year we had 57,” Dr. Solangi said.

He and his staff at the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies are now caring for dozens of sea turtles.

Of course, turtles in distress have to be  swimming through some pretty nasty stuff in their environment. The shores along the Gulf are still oiled. Here’s a story about 168 miles of coast in Louisiana alone.  This is from New Orleans own Times Picayune. Yes, folks, every single story I’m linking to on this is no more than a day old.  We’re still living this nightmare down here.

Louisiana’s coastline continues to be smeared with significant amounts of oil and oiled material from the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster, with cleanup teams struggling to remove as much as possible of the toxic material by the time migratory birds arrive at the end of February, said the program manager of the Shoreline Cleanup and Assessment Teams, which are working for BP and the federal government.

There are 113 miles of Louisiana coastline under active cleanup, with another 55 miles awaiting approval to start the cleanup process, according to SCAT statistics. Teams have finished cleaning almost 72 miles to levels where oil is no longer observable or where no further treatment is necessary.

But that’s not the whole story for the state’s coastline. According to SCAT statistics, there’s another 2,846 miles of beach and wetland areas where oil was once found but is no longer observable or is not treatable.

Gary Hayward, the Newfields Environmental Planning and Compliance contractor who oversees the SCAT program, said that large area will be placed into a new “monitor and maintenance” category, once Louisiana state and local officials agree to the procedures to be used for that category.

“With rare exceptions, most of the marshes still have a bathtub ring that we have all collectively decided we aren’t going to clean any more than we already have because we’d be doing more harm to the marshes than the oil is going to be doing to them,” Hayward said.

Raise your hand  if you heard any thing about any of this on your local newspaper or the national TV stations.  We’re so out of sight and out of mind down here that some times I wonder if we’re even considered part of the country.  You do realize that a majority of water-related commerce and a majority of oil comes through our state, don’t you?

The South American country of Brazil is looking forward to incoming-President Dilma Rousseff.  The Nation has an article that spotlights the country’s first female elected head of state.  I only hope to see a day like that for our country.  I’d also like to end the Reagan legacy and get a real Democrat back in the White House.  Yes, I’m clapping for Tinkerbelle.

When the confetti was still falling after her victory at the polls on October 31, Dilma Rousseff, Brazil’s first female president-elect, said, “I want to state my first commitment after the elections: to honor Brazil’s women so that today’s unprecedented result becomes a normal event and may be repeated and enlarged in companies, civil institutions and representative entities of our entire society.”

In a country where women have typically played a limited role in politics, the election of a woman to Brazil’s highest office signals a major break from the past. But Rousseff’s term will likely be marked by continuity with her predecessor, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. Lula, a member of the Workers’ Party (PT), is leaving office with 87 percent support in the polls. An economist, PT bureaucrat, chief of staff under Lula and former guerrilla in the anti-dictatorship movements of the 1960s and ’70s, Rousseff was handpicked by Lula to follow his lead as president. When she is sworn in on January 1, she will inherit Lula’s popular legacy and will be further empowered by the fact that her party and allied parties won a majority of seats in the Senate and Congress. Not even Lula counted on this much support.

Well, at least somewhere, women are getting their due.  I’m getting tired of living through stories where women in the U.S. watch jobs they should have go to less qualified people.  Then, they get to do all the work without the title.  What’s worse is when the boyz club in power make you participate in the charade of celebration and finding the royal heir. Like that legitimizes their malfeasance!  Here’s yet another example in a  WSJ story about Elizabeth Warren searching for a person for the job she would hold if the world weren’t so upside down.  It seems less and less about qualifications and knowledge these days and more and more about appearances and appeasing the old boyz.  Money screams!

White House adviser Elizabeth Warren and a top lieutenant are quietly asking business and consumer groups for names of people who might run the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, people familiar with the matter said.

The hunt suggests that Ms. Warren, a lightning rod for some bankers, might not be selected to lead the bureau, a centerpiece of the Dodd-Frank financial overhaul bill that passed this summer. Still, many liberal groups will push to get her in the post.

President Barack Obama’s choice could signal how he intends to deal with resurgent Republicans in Congress. The feelers to business groups serve as a reminder that any nominee would likely need support from at least seven Republicans in the Senate to win confirmation.

Among the names being discussed are Iowa’s attorney general, Tom Miller; New York state bank regulator Richard Neiman; and former Office of Thrift Supervision director Ellen Seidman.

The reality is Obama fights for nothing but Obama. I know there are other Obama appointments coming up shortly and I’m trying to get a grasp on what I want to discuss with you on the proposed replacements for Larry Summers.  Well, I know what I want to discuss but it’s more like trying to figure out how to describe what I see as the problem. As some one who rides both sides of the finance and economics line, I have some insight that many don’t have.  Finance is where you make the money and it’s really based on chimera.  I know the details and the proofs behind asset pricing models and it’s simply smoke and mirrors.  Economics is where the brains and the real insight exists. There is going to most likely be a bland, uninspired replacement for Larry Summers.  A finance person will undoubtedly win that appointment.  Hence, we will get smoke and mirrors and meaningless numbers.

Once again, it’s the vision thing.  All these appointments seem to reek of employing micromanaging corporate bureaucrats that are part of the problem.  They can crank through the data but they can’t put it into perspective.  As old President Bush used to say, no one seems to be good at the “vision thing”.  No one is crafting a  blue print that incorporates a better big picture based on what we already know.  The Great Depression and the inflationary 70s–and definitely the failures of Reagan’s voodoo economics–are full of lessons that every one seems to be ignoring.   We’re seeing the appointment of types that just muck around in the already mucked up bureaucracy decimated by Dubya Bush whose only inspiration appeared to be blowing things up like a psychopathic third grade with a bunch of firecrackers and a pond full of frogs.

Finance people have tons of numbers in search of a theory.  They crunch that data until they come up with a hypothesis that fits their storyline.   Macroeconomists have a broader sense of what the system needs to look like in order to really change things.  Economics has theory proved endlessly by empiricists.  Finance people have run amok since the 1980s and really, it’s time to end overt data mining and look to bigger principles.

This White House seems really short on values, vision, and a blueprint to carry our country forward into this new decade. We need an economic strategy that includes real job creation; not imaginary ‘saved’ jobs.  We need to unwind any thing that’s too big too fail and empower small, facile, and agile companies.  Our money needs to be concentrated on developing strategies and resources that we can nurture and renew.  (No, corn ethanol is not the answer. Making higher education more expensive and less accessible to all is not the answer either.)  We need to find a way to fulfill our promises to the weakest among us.  Current income inequality is not only immoral but it’s at levels approaching the powder keg of revolutions.  (Have you listened to a Teabot recently?)   We can no longer be railroaded by the interests of the few just because they can afford to fund political campaigns.  No government law should incent a business to leave its community in need to search out obscene profits elsewhere because government policy encourages it.  We should not accommodate any country that buggers growth from us by proffering trinkets on credit.   Vision is not a difficult thing.  Fighting for what’s right should not be a difficult thing either unless you’re in the fight with the wrong motivation.

Compromise seems to come so easy these days because there’s nothing proffered but compromise.  The original positions are badly compromised from the get-go.  Law making is based on political victory and not victory for the country.  No one is shifting real strategies due to midterm elections because there’s never been an overarching plan to begin with.  Moving pieces around a chess board is not playing chess.  Government at the highest levels has just gotten to be a muddled process with no guiding principles.   The White House is intently putting mid-level bureaucrats from corporations and the Clinton administration in charge of making tasteless sausage.  It’s just making things even more muddled and more muddled is not the type of change people want.  No bold vision could ever include the likes  Timothy Geithner, Joe Biden, or  Bill Richardson in positions that require vision.  Instead, we have people of vision–like Elizabeth Warren–hunting for acceptable seat warmers.


I would just like to say that the last two months of being more than a file cabinet has brought a lot of intriguing things to Sky Dancing.  We have a growing number of readers and front pagers and I find that all very exciting.  So, must other parts of the blogosphere.   WonktheVote’ s excellent piece ‘What if this is as good as the Obama administration gets? ‘ made Mike’s Blog Round up at Crooks and Liars. Another surprise showed up last night from Pew Research Center and the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism. This time a reference and quote come  from BostonBoomer on Julian Assange and the Wikileaks.  Here’s their story and how we fit in.

Espousing a unique mix of politics, technology, free speech and transparency, WikiLeaks has captured the attention from bloggers in a way few stories ever do. It has been a focus of social media conversation for three weeks this month alone, with a discussion that moved from one dimension to the next. After centering on political blame, the value of exposing government secrets, and the importance of a free press, the debate took on yet a new angle last week.For the week of December 20-24, more than a third (35%) of the news links on blogs were about the controversy, making it the No. 1 subject, according to the New Media Index from the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism.

“It should go without saying that I do not approve of Assange’s behavior if the allegations against him are true. Nevertheless, I still believe the allegations are very convenient for the powers that be,” declared Sky Dancing.

The Center produces something that’s called the New Media Report.  Here’s the description.

The New Media Index is a weekly report that captures the leading commentary of blogs and social media sites focused on news and compares those subjects to that of the mainstream press.

PEJ’s New Media Index is a companion to its weekly News Coverage Index. Blogs and other new media are an important part of creating today’s news information narrative and in shaping the way Americans interact with the news. The expansion of online blogs and other social media sites has allowed news-consumers and others outside the mainstream press to have more of a role in agenda setting, dissemination and interpretation. PEJ aims to find out what subjects in the national news the online sites focus on, and how that compared with the narrative in the traditional press.

In similar news,  Technorati just gave us a new badge early this morning. It’s a nice little green rectangle that says TOP 100 US POLITICS. We’re currently 95.  Not so bad for a blog that was just a file cabinet 2 months ago.

Our goals here include becoming part of the bigger conversation as well as providing more links and information to news items than we get via traditional main stream media outlets dominated by the concerns of advertisers and sources.  We complement that with our commentary and explanations and yours.    Yes.  They hear us now.

So what’s on your reading, blogging and celebration lists today?

28 Comments on “New Year’s Eve Reads”

  1. Peg says:

    Thanks for keeping us informed on the situation in the gulf.

    Here’s a piece from the Toldedo Blade on former Toledo councilman and one-time mayoral candidate, Mike Ferner, a Vietnam-era veteran and president of the national group Veterans for Peace.

    “…Speaking with The Blade by phone from Kabul, Mike Ferner, 59, said that starting tonight he will help lead a 24-hour global call-in campaign aimed at raising support for immediately ending the United States and NATO military involvement in the country…”

  2. purplefinn says:

    In similar news, Technorati just gave us a new badge early this morning. It’s a nice little green rectangle that says TOP 100 US POLITICS. We’re currently 95. Not so bad for a blog that was just a file cabinet 2 months ago.

    Happy New Year! Well done. Impressive. Cheers!

    I would add that the Democratic primary of 2008 rocked my world. I was going through a stack of papers/magazines and found a glut from 2008 and on. My life hit a snag there.

    Gratitude? Family, friends, cat, sunshine, and the beautiful parks and wildlife of South Central PA. Special thanks to the bloggers and commenters that keep me informed and help me make sense of the world. “Sky Dancing” always sounded like a lot of fun to me.

  3. Pat Johnson says:

    kat: Just keep on doing what you and all the hefty Front Pagers do so well each day: informing, educating, and offering your readers an opportunity to “catch up” on the topics of the day in a safe and civilized atmosphere.

    With a new and somewhat radical congress taking its place on January 5th, there is a certainty that much will be open to discussion as they continue to “flush and crush” the New Deal initiatives that have made this nation the power that it is.

  4. grayslady says:

    What a lovely idea, Kat, to end the year with recollections of all we have to be thankful for. It’s been a tough year for many of us, but, thanks to you, we have a new home to discuss ideas and concerns in an intelligent and thoughtful manner. So here’s to Sky Dancing, and Glenn Greenwald, and WikiLeaks, and all the new media websites that are picking up the ball dropped by traditional journalism. A very happy new year to all.

  5. fiscalliberal says:

    This post really has a lot of meat to it. Very suitable for year end. On the economics / business portion, I would ask: where does risk fit in? It seems that so much of what went on in the Bush era was enbled in the Clinton administration. However it was Bush who put the people in place to implement it. Incomptence and design were at play. In the corporations, risk assessment was non existant despite the mandate of Sarbanes Oxley to the executives and the governing boards.

    So the question is: what to what should be watched to enable the recovery. We also need to ask ourselves what is the new normal. For certain the Greenspen bubble is not. I suspect we are in for a lost decade untill the big banks and investors get rid of the toxic debt. So BofA is probably the next thing to watch. The critical question is, with Frank Dodd, will the government have the guts do do the right thing and restructure the bank like they did the automotive industry. That question is really in Geitners hands and ultimately Obama’s. Not much spine there.

    The State of the Union will be the first real indicator of what Obama’s thinking is. Then it is in the hands of the Republicans. Democrats pretty much are side liners.

    • bostonboomer says:

      What I’ve heard so far about the State of the Union address is that Obama plans to embrace the Catfood Commission recommendations and put it before Congress even though they didn’t get the required 14 votes.

      • Pat Johnson says:

        Jaybus! And Ed Rendell, one who I used to like, is suggesting that the retirement age be pushed up to 69 because in 30 yrs we are expected to live longer. Really? Without affordable healthcare?

        These people make me sick to my stomach. They really have no clue. None!

      • NW Luna says:

        Simpson and the other Catfood Commish guys need to work as janitors and auto mechanics for a few years first. Then let’s hear their recommendations.

    • dakinikat says:

      Well, everything that I’ve seen indicates that home prices will continue to decline. Just yesterday, I saw an estimate of at least an additional 20%. This is never good because there’s a wealth component to spending habits. If you feel poorer because you’ve got less wealth, you spend less. Now, the equity markets have recovered, the investment class probably feels okay, but the majority of people really have one asset that’s part of the wealth portfolio. That is their home. I do think we’re going to see a lost decade because even though there’s probably not that much new, additional unemployment, the current rate isn’t going any where under these conditions. Also, I do think this new found government austerity will not be good.

      I agree with the NYT. The crushing lack of funds and unemployment will start causing states to collapse. There’s at least 4 states that have twice the national average of unemployment; California tops the list. Illinois is an miserable shape. We’ll see how these austerity nuts handle it when their constituents call 911 and no one answers.

  6. janicen says:

    What Pat said @ 7:09 am, “Just keep on doing…”

    Thank you for keeping us informed on the situation in the Gulf. This is the only place I get any trustworthy news on the disaster there.

    Personally, I’m glad to put 2010 behind me. It’s been an extremely challenging year for my family, but we got through it intact, and despite the horrific challenges and events we’ve faced, we are still so much better off than millions of Americans. I’m grateful for everything good in my life, and I guess I would have to say that all of the near-disasters that have darted around me have reminded me to appreciate all of the blessings of my life.

  7. RSM says:

    The Hanky-Panky Man takes a hit:

    Ex-Treasury chief Paulson loses $1 mln on DC home

    Few know better than former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson how the struggling U.S. economy has battered home prices.

    As former President George W. Bush’s top economic adviser, Paulson played a lead role battling the U.S. housing downturn and deep financial crisis it sparked.

    But last week it got personal.

    Paulson sold his three-bedroom home in a tony Washington neighborhood last week for close to a third less than his initial asking price and more than $1 million below what he paid for it more than four years ago.

    The villa-style home near the official vice president’s mansion and the National Cathedral sold for $3.25 million on Dec. 21. Paulson put it on the market for $4.6 million in April, later lowering the asking price to $4.15 million, according to real estate industry records. He paid $4.3 million in August 2006, according to government records.

    “A jewel-like facade, reminiscent of a Provencal villa, gives way to a remarkable interior with living space on three levels and expansive common areas,” gushed the listing.

    After reading that home description, I can’t help but wonder how Paulson’s ever been able to claim a reputation for austerity and prudence in his personal life. Of course, making reference to it may be a prerequisite for access to him. In Too Big to Fail, Andrew Ross Sorkin described at some length Paulson’s personal vacation island off Savannah, with its eight-figure price tag, as well as his taking his entire extended family–grandkids included–to Beijing to see the Olympics in person. However, Sorkin still gave Paulson credit for an abstemious lack of ostentation. I believe the support for it was that Paulson wears socks with holes in them.

  8. dakinikat says:

    Here’s another reminder of the last decade and why the next few years might not be pleasant. It’s from C&L and it explains disgust with what the Republicans did on the 09/11 first responders bill quite eloquently.

    First of all, this is a Republican Party who’s entire platform in the Bush years was to repeat the term “9/11” more often than Governor Haley Barbour looks over his shoulder while telling jokes at his country club. It was the all-purpose answer to anything you could possibly ask, whether one was discussing national security, Emeril Lagasse, or the Ohio State-Michigan game.

    Republicans constantly implied or outright called Democrats un-American for any deviance from what they considered sound security policy – an insult to anyone in existence on that fateful day. They questioned Democrats’ patriotism for wanting to protect the rights of Homeland Security workers to organise. They did much the same to those questioning the non-existent link between Saddam Hussein’s Iraq and Al Qaeda – when not outing their wives as secret agents.

    Just talking about 9/11, whether in oratory or simple badinage, brought Republicans to such a natural high that most were likely warned by their doctors not to mix it with Viagra for fear of permanent priapism.

    Secondly, this whole disgusting display is just another example of how the US has become a two-tiered society, where those who earn marginal wages do the fighting and the life-saving, while those who earn significantly more, have become the first Americans ever to have their taxes cut during wartime.

  9. fiscalliberal says:

    I read Sorkins and Paulsons book and both are favorable to Paulson and do not discuss the implecations of what he knew about Goldman and how it affected his decisions. Officially he was not supposed to have any contact with Goldman while Treasury Secretary. However there was the meeting in Moscow (Sorking covered that) and Paulson did get a waiver in the heat of the collapse to talk to Goldman.

    AIG / our government paid Goldman and others 100 Cents on the dollar on AIG CDS payments even though others thought haircuts were in order. In later testemony Goldman claimed they did not need 100 cents on the dollar because they were hedged on a AIG colapse. I hope the FCIC report in January throws more light on that situation.

    As more information comes out, Hank Paulson does not come off as pristine as he claims in his book.

  10. Inky says:

    I totally second what grayslady said above:

    So here’s to Sky Dancing, and Glenn Greenwald, and WikiLeaks, and all the new media websites that are picking up the ball dropped by traditional journalism. A very happy new year to all.

    Congratulations to all at Sky Dancing. You’ve come a long way in just two months!

    One nontraditional journalist that I’ve recently become hooked on is Max Keiser, the ranting economic/financial commentator on RT news, whose analysis always makes me laugh while also making the thoroughly depressing worldwide debt/economic crisis a bit more comprehensible. Plus his delivery reminds me of the great comedian Norm McDonald.

    I’m also curious whether anyone else here is a fan of Jeremy Rifkin? He’s a far more sober analyst than Max, one of those “big thinker” types who’s very focused on how we as a species can evolve enough to survive peak oil, climate change and other forms of environmental devastation, etc., etc. If that sounds interesting to anyone I recommend the following lecture:

    Happy New Year to all!

  11. salmonrising says:

    Congrats on #95…and that’s just after 2 months!

    It’s clear to me why this blog is growing in readership—smart well reasoned writing like this:

    “We need an economic strategy that includes real job creation; not imaginary ‘saved’ jobs. We need to unwind any thing that’s too big too fail and empower small, facile, and agile companies. Our money needs to be concentrated on developing strategies and resources that we can nurture and renew. (No, corn ethanol is not the answer. Making higher education more expensive and less accessible to all is not the answer either.) We need to find a way to fulfill our promises to the weakest among us. Current income inequality is not only immoral but it’s at levels approaching the powder keg of revolutions. (Have you listened to a Teabot recently?) We can no longer be railroaded by the interests of the few just because they can afford to fund political campaigns. No government law should incent a business to leave its community in need to search out obscene profits elsewhere because government policy encourages it. We should not accommodate any country that buggers growth from us by proffering trinkets on credit.”

    Nobody else has said it better.

  12. Woman Voter says:

    Just subscribed 😉 Happy New Year, looking forward to reading more and more interesting things and Thank You for covering Bernie Sanders live (made my day).

  13. NW Luna says:

    “As some one who rides both sides of the finance and economics line, I have some insight that many don’t have.”

    That’s what I love about your posts, Dak. I’ve learned enough that I can even (sorta) explain to people why our current non-regulation of smoke-and-mirrors financial dealings is so bad.

    I believe that understanding a problem is the way to understanding the solution. Unfortunately, implementing the solution means fighting the moneyed powers. That’s hard to do without support from the top. Elizabeth Warren — and more like her — need to be at the top.

  14. foxyladi14 says:

    HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!!SKY DANCERS.. :mrgreen:

  15. joanelle says:

    Happy New Year, Dakinikat and all the front pagers here at Sky Dancing. I’m grateful that I have a roof over my head, food on my table, a great family and friends and for finding you all – twice – once at TC and we hung tight to each other to get through 2008 to 2010 and then I thought I lost you – but here you were – dancing at the little blog that could.

    I wish you all a wonderful 2011 and that you are able to fulfill your wildest expectations.

  16. Woman Voter says:

    dredeyedick Dave Manchester
    The dcmDaily – Select is out! ▸ Top stories today by @gaemar01 @truthexcavator

    The above Daily includes a video clip of the appointment of Elizabeth Warren and a link to the story of Grace Magabe suing a newspaper for reporting the news and the backlash there after.

    Anonymous hackers target Zimbabwe government over WikiLeaks | World news – Robert Mugabe’s wife Grace is suing the Zimbabwe Standard newspaper for publishing information released by WikiLeaks that links her to the alleged trade in illicit diamonds. Photograph: Nasser Nass…

  17. Minkoff Minx says:

    Wow, I just can’t believe it is 2011! That just blows my mind. This last month of the year has brought me so joy and confidence. I owe that to my Sky Dancing family. Being able to have conversations with you all is something I am grateful for. It is truly exciting to see how the blog is growing. Hope everyone has a safe New Years. Be careful and enjoy the night!