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Big surprise

The banksters win!

New job

Here’s where Bob Herbert landed after leaving the Times:

New York-based think tank, Demos, has announced that former New York Times columnist Bob Herbert will join the organization as their newest distinguished senior fellow.

At the think tank’s annual gala this evening, Herbert was simultaneously awarded the Transforming America Award and named a distinguished senior fellow. According to Demos, Herbert will “continue his work on behalf of low- and middle-income Americans, providing expertise and writing on economic, social and policy issues.”

“Bob Herbert’s sharp, clear voice has long played an extraordinary role in public debate. He elevates the stark challenges and historical injustices that face too many Americans, while promoting the ideals that should drive our policies,” said Miles Rapoport, President of Demos and The American Prospect magazine, in a released statement.

The Chris Christie Annual 100-Yard Walk

David McKenna’s come up with a great solution to New Jersey’s funding problems, after first getting in some digs at the man Philadelphians love to hate, Michael Smerconish:

Smerconish doesn’t slam the governor for believing fiscal austerity is good for the peons but not for the millionaires. He doesn’t mention that Christie’s personal behavior contradicts his Ralph Kramden-esque rants against members of N.J.’s largest teachers union, whom he has described as “bullies and thugs.”

Instead, the issue that concerns the columnist is the possible harm Christie’s helicopter usage might do to the psyche of his son, the baseball player. He urges the governor to drive — i.e., to be driven — to the kid’s next game.

Smerconish informs us that he drives an F-150 pickup and an $80,000 Jaguar “provided” by one of the sponsors of his radio show. He confesses to embarrassing his sons twice, by picking them up from school in his “spectacular” Jag and, on another day, in the F-150, which prompted one of the boys to ask, “Dad, how many pickup trucks do you see other than ours?”

Oh, the emotional trauma of kids raised in upper middle-class privilege, and of harried upper middle-class fathers like Smerconish and Christie! My heart goes out.

But Smerconish could help undermine the public perception that he and his soul brother are lazy, wasteful elitists. He could create and promote the first annual Chris Christie 100-Yard Walk, the proceeds of which could be used to help pay for teachers and school supplies. The event might boost both men’s public image and the oft-heard right-wing claim that charity should take the place of government programs that help the poor.

The fee to participate in the walk would be twenty dollars. Each walker would be sponsored by an N.J. millionaire who would kick in an additional $10,000 and have his name engraved in the 100-yard walkway (at Drumthwacket?).

Christie could take part, if only to inspire the grossly obese who are trying to get in shape. Smerconish might join him to prove that he, Mr. Jag, is still capable of walking 100 yards. But only after a thorough physical exam from his doctor, of course.

Sissy boy

Such a sad, sad story. Poor kid.

Someday, someway

Marshall Crenshaw:

Leather jacket

This is the song Mick Taylor wrote about his time with the Stones:

Easy to be hard

Some of you might not remember that the song made a hit by Three Dog Night was actually from the musical “Hair,” in which Jennifer Warnes starred:

Connect the dots

I realize some people really are this dumb, but it frightens me to think this woman has a drivers license and can vote.

Tonight’s show

Virtually Speaking Susie, 9pm EST tonight. My guest is Nicole Sandler, and we’ll be talking about weiners and all kinds of stuff.

Click here to listen, call 646-200-3440 with questions or comments.

The Zen of being screwed

I was talking to my dying friend today. Once again, she said she wants information about exactly how she’s going to go, and her doctors won’t tell her. “Didn’t you get that stuff I emailed you?” I said. But then I remembered she has trouble reading now.

So I said as soon as I get back from Netroots Nation, I’ll bring her some printouts and read them to her. “It’s not pretty,” I said, hesitant.

“I know,” she said. “I just want to know.”

It’ll be a lot better when you’re in hospice, I tell her. They don’t pretend, they answer questions.

“I have this headache that won’t go away, it hurts all the time now.”

“Well, you know: brain tumor,” I said, and we both cracked up.

She speaks so slowly and carefully now, like a stroke victim. When I call her house and get the answering machine, it’s a shock to hear the old outgoing message; she sounds so different.

The nice thing about realizing you’re fucked, we both agreed, is how it frees you up to enjoy the rest of your life. You know? These bastards have fucked up the air, the water, the food and the economy. Our children are screwed, and our children’s children.

Which realization, for some reason, really quiets the monkey chatter in my head. It frees you up so that you can sit and look at a flower, or a sunset. It’s a lot easier to live in the moment, at least some of the time.
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