Dittos

What Echidne said, especially the part about birth control. I live on a small street, and most houses have one car – many have three. Think of all the oil those cars will suck up in a lifetime.

R.I.P.

T-Bone Wolk, 58. Don’t know how I missed this one (he died back in February). He’s played with so many people, but most recently I’ve been enjoying his work on Daryl Hall’s home studio series. He had a heart attack and died just after finishing another session with Daryl. He played bass (and everything else) with Hall & Oates since the 80s and was a consummate musician. In this clip, he’s the guy in the red shirt playing guitar.

Wait For Me

The answer’s still “Hell, no!” But it’s a great song, isn’t it? Todd Rundgren and Daryl Hall:

The Apple Didn’t Fall Far From The Tree

What a great story. Last night Alice Tan Ridley, a NYC subway singer who’s been performing her heart out at the 42nd St. station for 20 years, made it to the next round on “America’s Got Talent.” As if that wasn’t interesting enough, she’s also the mother of Oscar-nominated actress Gabourey “Precious” Sidibe.

And what a set of pipes:

Thought for the Day

Listen, you already know how screwed up everything is, right? I don’t need to hit you over the head with it. We can use a day off from the craziness, so I’m not writing about the insanity for the rest of the day.

Must. Hit. Head. On. Wall.

Via Rep. Ed Markey:

Now the other big oil companies, testifying in Congress today, contend that this was an isolated incident. They say a similar disaster could never happen to them.

And yet it is this kind of Blind Faith — which is ironically the name of an actual rig in the Gulf — that has led to this kind of disaster.

In preparation for this hearing, Congress reviewed the oil spill safety response plans for all the top five oil companies.

What we found was that Exxon, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Shell and BP have response plans that are virtually identical. The plans cite identical response capabilities and tout identical ineffective equipment. In some cases, they use the exact same words and made the exact same assurances.

The covers of the five response plans are different colors, but the content is ninety percent identical.

Like BP, three other companies include references to protecting walruses, which have not called the Gulf of Mexico home for 3 million years.

Two other plans are such dead ringers for BP’s that they list a phone number for the same expert – a man who has been dead since 2005.

The American people deserve oil safety plans that are ironclad and not boilerplate.

Deja Vu All Over Again

I’m gonna have to go with the pessimists on this one: Our president seems incapable of stopping his slide into mushy irrelevance. Ezra Klein:

Obama did not make any specific promises about the bill he would support, or even that he wanted. He did not say he would price carbon, or that we should get a certain percentage of our energy from renewables by a certain date.

But his language was a close echo of the language he used in the health-care fight. “There are costs associated with this transition,” he said, using a formulation many will remember from health care. “And some believe we can’t afford those costs right now. I say we can’t afford not to change how we produce and use energy.” Similarly familiar was his reminder that “I am happy to look at other ideas and approaches from either party – as long they seriously tackle our addiction to fossil fuels,” and his promise that “the one approach I will not accept is inaction.”

The optimistic take, at least for environmentalists, is that this is the language and approach Obama uses when he really means to legislate. The pessimistic take is that Obama shied away from clearly describing the problem, did not endorse specific legislation, did not set benchmarks, and chose poll-tested language rather than a sharper case that might persuade skeptics.

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