SHORT TAKES: Correspondents Dinner, More Debates, Collection Agencies, and the Grateful Dead

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WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENTS’ DINNER

Tonight, the mega-insider dinner party for White House-tethered media — and increasingly, bloggers, and their friends — is being held at the Washington Hilton. TWN was slated to attend but the chief correspondent got waylaid by a really awful chest cold that he would not have wished on anyone — not even those attending the dinner. This will be the LAST of President Bush’s WHCA dinners. Something to toast?

CLINTON CHALLENGES OBAMA TO LINCOLN-DOUGLAS STYLE DEBATE

Hillary Clinton, hoping to shake up her rival’s edge, has challenged Barack Obama to a Lincoln-Douglas style debate with no moderators. After the furor after the ABC debate held last week and accusations that neither Charles Gibson nor George Stephanopoulos pushed the candidates hard on issues the public cared about. Obama’s campaign is studying the proposal.
Update: Obama Campaign says no to Hillary — an hour after TWN posted this item.
Obama’s campaign stated:

“We have participated in 21 nationally televised debates, the most in primary history, including four exclusively with Senator Clinton. Senator Clinton refused an earlier invitation that had been accepted to debate in North Carolina. Over the next 10 days, we believe it’s important to talk directly to the voters of Indiana and North Carolina about fixing our economy, cutting the cost of health care and ending a war in Iraq that never should have been authorized in the first place.”

OBAMA AND COLLECTION AGENCIES?

No, he wasn’t getting a dividend from them — he was being chased by them, according to Michelle Obama.
The Obama campaign is doubling its efforts to remind voters of their candidate’s humble roots given his failure to win over working-class voters in Pennsylvania. Michelle Obama, the daughter of a Chicago city pump operator, in a speech in Fort Wayne, Indiana yesterday described what it was like when she and newlywed husband Barrack used to get phone calls from collection agencies. “I remember those days clearly, sweating to get that mail. . .That collection agency, the loan debt people calling you telling you that you’ve got a few more days before you’re in trouble.”
At stake in Indidana are 72 delegates that the Clinton and Obama camps covet. Clinton is targeting the state’s southern rural towns and the large auto plants in the central part of Hoosierland. Obama is depending on black voters in Indianapolis and Gary, as well as students in the college towns of Bloomington and West Lafayette.

LOOSE ENDS

. . .Three decades of archival materials from the Grateful Dead — including business records to stage backdrops — have been donated by the rock band to the University of California-Santa Cruz McHenry Library. The materials document the band’s ascendance into one of world’s most influential bands.
. . .When the Spanish government appointed a pregnant defense minister, the military establishment laughed. But now the Spanish military is furious that Defense Minister Carme Chacon’s first act in office has been to ban the boys in uniform from watching websites featuring soccer or naked women.
. . .This week the Alabama state legislature killed a proposal to require the use of English in driver license exams, saying the ideas were as divisive as former Gov. George Wallace’s l963 stand against desegregation.

— TWN Staff

Comments

34 comments on “SHORT TAKES: Correspondents Dinner, More Debates, Collection Agencies, and the Grateful Dead

  1. Cassandra Wilson says:

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    Reply

  2. reverse auctions says:

    Travesty on all levels and choices leave us to put our heads between our legs and pray for the best.

    Reply

  3. Tintin says:

    “And I think it is interesting and informative to know a person’s
    motivations for who they support.”
    Yes, I agree. Except you can never know what they are unless he
    tells you. Or you have a reliable third party who knows the person.
    It’s pointless to argue about things you can’t see and can never
    know…can only speculate about.

    Reply

  4. Tintin says:

    “And I think it is interesting and informative to know a person’s
    motivations for who they support.”
    Yes, I agree. Except you can never know what they are unless he
    tells you. Or you have a reliable third party who knows the person.
    It’s pointless to argue about things you can’t see and can never
    know…can only speculate about.

    Reply

  5. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Stop battling all those voices in your head and engage. Positing my “obsession with Hillary’s infallibility” is the true nitwittiness and indicates an abject inability to listen.”
    Horseshit.

    Reply

  6. Tahoe Editor says:

    “And I don’t care who Tahoe is, or if Steve knows him or not…his obsession with Hillary’ infallibility is nitwitty.”
    I’ve heard this all before. My best friend from college who supports Obama always comes at me with his sarcasm, saying, “Yes, she’s flawless, let’s go for her … yada yada yada.”
    All this only shows that Carroll et. al. haven’t actually been reading what I write, and have this alternate fantasy world in which I somehow go on and on about her “infallibility.”
    Stop battling all those voices in your head and engage. Positing my “obsession with Hillary’s infallibility” is the true nitwittiness and indicates an abject inability to listen.

    Reply

  7. Pete says:

    Just because its devisive doesn’t mean that its wrong. English only. This is America, not sh*t*ss Mexico. http://www.goodoleboybumperstickers.com

    Reply

  8. Carroll says:

    All “true believers” are fools. And hyper active activist are usually weak minds like movie star groupies or members of some single issue cult they think their hero will push thru.
    And I think it is interesting and informative to know a person’s motivations for who they support.
    And I don’t care who Tahoe is, or if Steve knows him or not…his obsession with Hillary’ infallibality is nitwitty ….not to mention his prior statements about representative “democracy”..which sound a exactly like the simple minded defense spin of every lobby and foreign agent in DC.

    Reply

  9. Tahoe Editor says:

    There are three choices
    I think she’s the best choice
    You choose doom & gloom
    Enjoy
    I’m going to see Baby Mama

    Reply

  10. downtown says:

    OK, TE, what do you find so admirable about HRC’s foreign policy positions? Isn’t this the woman who coined the phrase “obliteration” of a totally non-hostile country. Do you, even for a moment, think that this kind of bellicosity is going to win us any friends on the global stage? But then again, it may depend on the definition of ‘us’, won’t it.

    Reply

  11. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Thats a mighty low standard. Its going to take a hell of a sight more than “the lesser of three evils” to bail this country out.

    Reply

  12. Tahoe Editor says:

    She’ll make a better one.

    Reply

  13. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Oh I get it.
    When she feeds us some line of shit, you just nod your head and think “Well, she’s lyin’ now, but she’ll make a great President”.
    Explains alot.

    Reply

  14. Tahoe Editor says:

    “They all do it” isn’t “logic” or “argument” — it’s fact. I don’t argue with facts.
    If you can’t separate lie from truth, you’re hopelessly lost in your solipsism. Explains a lot.

    Reply

  15. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Why are you more personally obsessed with Hillary’s lies than everyone else’s? I agree — they all lie”
    Because she is such a lousy liar, and because her lies and feigned emotional “episodes” are so transparent. What really gets to me is that people like yourself can say “I agree — they all lie”, and then turn around and act like we can separate the lies from the truth. You laud her articulation of “the policies & changes I’d like to see.” Careful articulation is the hallmark of an accomplished con-person, is it not? What, you have some sort of “lie radar” that tells you when their campaign rhetoric is truth rather than fiction?
    Me? I’m sick of this “they all do it” horseshit. As long as we accept it, they’ll do it. Until we start holding our politicians accountable, we deserve the shit they shovel our way. When some posturing fraud like Hillary gets caught in a bald faced lie, imagine what future candidates would think if the American people rejected such a liar en masse. Do you think candidates would try to be a bit more respectful of the truth? But nope, theres always this chorus of duped and star struck slobberers out there chanting “Yeah, but they ALL do it”.
    You think she’s lying about “obliterating Iran”? Or when she’s cashing those Arms Industry checks? Somehow, something tells me therein lies the REAL Hillary Clinton. But don’t worry about it, Tahoe, at least theres a real Hillary in there somewhere, even if it is a monster that sees no evil in peppering a civilian population with millions of cluster bomblets.
    Obama? He’s still trying to find his “reality” in the highest bidder. His recent comments about Carter, Israel, and Petreaus are a pretty good indication about who’s winning the auction.
    But what does it matter? Using your logic, “they all do it”, its just a big ‘ol crapshoot, right?

    Reply

  16. Tahoe Editor says:

    POA et. al.,
    POA, you would be the first to call all politicians liars. So what’s the deal? Why are you more personally obsessed with Hillary’s lies than everyone else’s? I agree — they all lie. So now, given that level playing field, who do you think can both win a general election and make some of the changes you’d like to see in this country? For me, that answer is Hillary. It happens to be the answer for more than 15 million other voters so far.
    I’m not a paid shill for Hillary — in fact I’ve volunteered several hours to call voters in upcoming contests. I don’t really care if she embellished her Bosnia story. I don’t really care if she expected sniper fire so much that when it didn’t happen, some part of her memory was convinced it did. I really don’t care, and most voters don’t. (I also don’t care about Jeremiah Wright. I found admiration and respect for him after his PBS appearance. But I don’t really care and I don’t think it applies to this election — except the extent to which he’ll be used to paint Barack as unpatriotic.)
    I support Hillary because of the three, she best articulates the policies & changes I’d like to see. Yes, there are some issues on which we don’t see eye-to-eye. Which of the three do you see eye-to-eye with? None, of course. You write them all off. And maybe that’s a great place for you to be. For me, they’re not all the same.
    My problem with Barack is that while his debate performance has improved for the most part, he still comes off too often as not knowing what he’s talking about. He’s been afraid of the press from the start because of this — even during his Halcyon days when every MSM outlet superimposed a halo over his head at every turn. “Come on, guys, I just answered like, eight questions!” That approach does not a president make, and I don’t think America’s going to put someone in the White House who doesn’t have answers to questions he won’t address but says he’s going around the world on a Dictator Tour during his first year in office to make everything all better. I understand and appreciate how he has generated as much excitement and support as Hillary, but I don’t think the BO wave is going to build enough to spill out of the pool where the Hollywood/MoveOn/Kerry/Kennedy/PhD/white wine set are splashing about.

    Reply

  17. Tintin says:

    Your comparison is ridiculous. We are talking about the
    Presidfency of the United States.”
    My point wasn’t the comparison; of course, the two situations
    are very different in terms of consequences.
    The point is that it’s very hard to divine another’s motivations,
    even when you know “him” well. Much harder when you don’t
    know anything about him.
    Hillary has lots of fawning supporters who ignore all sorts of
    things about her–same for Obama. Same for all the
    candidates. She also has detractors who ignore her good points.
    You go off and a very thin branch when you presume to know
    why people do or say what they say about their support for a
    candidate. It doesn’t make any sense to you, but that’s you.

    Reply

  18. downtown says:

    Fawning supporters of _ANY_ candidate make me feel extremely suspicious. TE’s contributions read like they belong on some Teen Magazine. But hey, keep ’em coming….meanwhile, people in Upstate NY are still waiting for those 200,000 jobs she promised. Oh wait wait wait…

    Reply

  19. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Your best friend marries someone whom you
    can’t stand. Say she happens to be wealthy. So you say, “It must be her money.” Well, maybe. But a lot of the time, the
    explanation is just: He digs her and you don’t.
    Your comparison is ridiculous. We are talking about the Presidfency of the United States.
    If Tahoe Editor is so infatuated with a Hillary presidency that he has completely missed noting the lies, then anything he says about her is suspect.

    Reply

  20. Tintin says:

    You can never know the backgrounds and motivations of people
    who are anonymous speakers. You can speculate; you can have
    private thoughts about this or that; but you can’t know.
    So charging them with this or that motivation is a waste of time.
    Pointless, really. Like chasing your own tail.
    For example, when people are enthusiastic about anyone or
    anything, they tend to overlook the negatives–even if the
    negatives are glaring to you who doesn’t share their enthusiasm.
    This happens all the time, not just in politics, but in our
    personal lives. Your best friend marries someone whom you
    can’t stand. Say she happens to be wealthy. So you say, “It must
    be her money.” Well, maybe. But a lot of the time, the
    explanation is just: He digs her and you don’t.

    Reply

  21. downtown aka another angry old white man says:

    Dear Mr. Clemons,
    well, if he’s (Tahoe Editor) a true believer then I’m an infidel. But I do love your website 🙂 It’s the homepage on my Firefox browser. I think POA is my brother from another mother.

    Reply

  22. PissedOffAmerican says:

    I am debating issues, just not the “issues” you would prefer I debate. Personally, I am attempting to debate why someone would advocate for an IRREFUTABLE LIAR.
    Steve, are you offering a direct denial that Hillary has lied to us? Want to “debate” that?
    And the “motives and backgrounds” of these candidate’s more voracious supporters on your blog IS RELEVANT, and should be fair game. It is only reasonable to question why someone works so diligently to cast a candidate in such a favorable light while ignoring the less than stellar aspects of that candidate’s performance and character. It would be stupid NOT to ponder thier motives when considering their arguments.
    Truthfully, when I see the kind of tunnel visioned denial of reality that these “true believers” exhibit when advocating for these posturing frauds it is a miracle I even get to the point of pondering their “motives”, as the bigger question for me is the state of their intelligence.

    Reply

  23. Steve Clemons says:

    Debate issues — and stop denigrating the background and motives of those in the debate.
    I happen to know who TahoeEditor is and he’s far, far away from being a paid or compensated Clinton apparatchik. He is just a true believer, like some others of you on Obama.

    Reply

  24. downtown says:

    By the way, I found that display of pomposity absolutely repulsive, but couldn’t take my eyes off the screen, like watching a train wreck. The only redeeming quality of the event was seeing Steny Hoyer’s hairpiece. Evidently, the guy doesn’t have any mirrors in his house. And these are the people who’re supposed to ‘govern’ us? No wonder…..
    Also, am I the only one to think that Craig Ferguson
    is just about the most unfunny bloke on the planet?

    Reply

  25. downtown says:

    “I find it hard to believe that Tahoe Editor is not connected to Hillary’s campaign, and is not simply schilling for her at TWN.”
    DITTO
    At least she/he gets paid, I would hope.

    Reply

  26. PissedOffAmerican says:

    It amazes me that these jackasses that advocate for any of these candidates are so willing to cast reality out the window.
    For instance, Tahoe Editor would have us simply ignore the IRREFUTABLE FACT that Hillary seems to have a problem restraining herself from exagerating the truth and lying to us. His attidude seems to be, “Oh, so what if she’s a liar? Can we move on now to my shameless pimping?”
    I find it hard to believe that Tahoe Editor is not connected to Hillary’s campaign, and is not simply schilling for her at TWN. No one can be so tunnel visioned and one sided, ignoring the obvious faults of a candidate, unless they are on a marketing mission. He reminds me of MP’s blind support and repetitiously boring defense of AIPAC.
    At least the Obama elves seem to be sincere citizens, rather than political operatives. I find their blubbering support for Obama no less inexplicable, but at least ignorance and misguided patriotism isn’t an act of will, as purposeful and shameless pimping is.
    Its amazing, also, how little pimping for McCain we see on the RW radio shows. It seems the scriptwriters for the GOP are reduced to nipping at the hamstrings of the democratic candidates, rather than finding much to laud about this ill-tempered geriatric dinosaur they find themselves saddled with.
    I had to laugh yesterday as one of the RW mouthpieces was saying that drivers should no longer be allowed to drive past the age of 75, that their driving privileges should be suspended at that point. I tried to call in to tell the damned fool that he had a Presidential candidate that he felt was going to be mentally incapable of driving before he finished his term of office. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get through. No doubt his screeners would have nixed my call anyway.
    Anyway, what a pathetic cast of characters.
    Meanwhile, a short hop over to TPMucracker is enough to drive any true patriot to insanity. Who would have believed our politicians would one day be able to so brazenly show contempt for the American people, and the rule of law, yet completely avoid being held accountable?
    And this shameless liar Hillary wants to debate this media fabrication Obama in yet one more display of softball queries and irrelevant banter?
    Screw that. Lets give all three of these clowns baseball bats, put ’em in a ring, and televise it on MTV. The winner gets the throne.

    Reply

  27. abe lincoln says:

    sure i will debate her, after she and bill admit they are pro slavery.

    Reply

  28. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Maybe something big is afoot. I’ve never seen the map this lit up. We might get a chance to see how really inconsequential we really are.
    http://www.iris.washington.edu/seismon/

    Reply

  29. tomj says:

    It is too bad that Obama has not taken Hillary up on the new debate format. I suggested (elsewhere) that Obama make a similar request of Hillary.
    We, Democrats, really don’t need some jerk asking dumb questions. If dumb questions are to be asked, we should do it personally.

    Reply

  30. Bob K says:

    Two minute statement/counterstatement crossfire, as the Clinton campaign proposed, has little to do with a “Lincoln-Douglas style” debate.

    Reply

  31. Tahoe Editor says:

    There is a clear consensus that doubts are growing about Barack “Hey guys, I just answered, like, eight questions” Obama. Prevent defense is one way to go, but if he believes in himself and in America as much as he wants us to, he ought to have the audacity to go toe-to-toe with Hillary in an unmoderated debate and hope America chooses him.
    Dick Morris: Iraq could backfire on Obama
    http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=61107
    Clinton Win Stirs Doubts on Obama
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120899936978040077.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
    Barack Obama limps on tainted by Hillary Clinton’s encore
    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/us_elections/article3803951.ece
    Losses reveal weaknesses that could haunt Obama
    http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/5725778.html
    Obama: Stop complaining, start fighting back
    http://www.hattiesburgamerican.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080426/OPINION01/804260321
    Changing the Changeling
    http://nymag.com/news/politics/powergrid/46464/

    Reply

  32. jon says:

    Get better soon!
    It won’t be anywhere near as good without Colbert doing the
    honors. Probably the first and last time Bush ever heard a little
    truth.
    Besides, it’s nauseating to see how the capitol press sucks up to
    Bush.

    Reply

  33. ... says:

    hillary was the odds on favorite going into this nom process and she blew it… now apparently obama has a weak image and is trying to coast to victory… it would appear the opposite if you step back a few feet..

    Reply

  34. Tahoe Editor says:

    Barack can try to coast if he wants to, but he does nothing to counter his weak image by refusing to debate without video clips & “gotcha” moderators. Hillary has more than 15 million votes — more than any other candidate in history. Yes, for the billionth time he’s ahead in states won (meaningless) and delegates thanks to the activists and their children who flooded all the caucus sites, but finding 90 minutes before May 6 to stand with Hillary so the two candidates can ask each other questions could be a great opportunity for the party and find a trajectory into Denver.

    Reply

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