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The Roundup for September 22, 2011

Had some computer issues today that dragged out my posting schedule.

• At least one analyst believes that Operation Twist will raise GDP and create jobs. More to the point, Mike Konczal argues that better results from the Fed will come with better advocacy from progressives.

• Republicans think they have something by asking Warren Buffett to prove that he pays a lower tax rate than his secretary. Thing is, he revealed the evidence on the Charlie Rose Show a month ago. Oh yeah, well where’s the long-form tax return signed by a hospital administrator?

• The Center for Immigration Studies is a far-right outfit, but the numbers look plausible here that most job growth in Texas is going to immigrants, whether documented or undocumented. Needless to say, that’s not Rick Perry’s platform for the country. But it should be! We should allow in more immigrants.

• The Super Committee is like a lobbyist full employment act. About the only lobby that could get run over is the farmer lobby.

• If the Americans have lost Iyad Allawi, their original handpicked puppet, on the issue of leaving troops in Iraq beyond the December deadline, maybe it’s best that they just pack up and leave.

• Whaddya know, oil spilled in the Deepwater Horizon disaster is not breaking up on the floor of the Gulf of Mexico. B-but, dispersants!

• Score one for Spencer Ackerman: after his Wired series on Islamophobic training sessions for counter-terrorism, the FBI has acknowledged the problem and launched a “comprehensive review.”

• David Walker is a deficit hysteric, but his point about baselines is correct. On net, the Obama tax plan in his deficit proposal would cut taxes $2.2 trillion from current law. I don’t think Walker thinks the best alternative would be to let all the Bush tax cuts expire, however.

• Mark Udall and Ron Wyden stepped up their criticism of the Justice Department, accusing them of “misleading the public” on their interpretation of the Patriot Act. Go Udall and Wyden!

• Jay Rockefeller raises some alarm over the fact that the consequences of the Obama plan for a “blended rate” for Medicaid could devastate the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

• Mike Konczal has a great look at the different options for fiscal, monetary and housing policy to get us out of our economic mess. Weekly unemployment claims are still elevated, so this problem isn’t going away.

• I’d rather link aid to Pakistan to them going after the Haqqani network, than have the White House threaten unilateral military action if the Pakistanis don’t comply.

• Raj Date, the temporary leader of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as it exists without a director, beat up on the mortgage servicers a bit at a conference today.

• Ron Suskind looks fine on the Anita Dunn quote controversy, as she requested that the first half of the quote be chopped. The larger issue from the book is a refinement of Obama’s ideas about economic policy, character issues of the major White House players aside.

• Jimmy Carter is right, the murder of Troy Davis is a disgrace, and we have to work harder to end such future tragedies.

• The hikers are free from Iran.

• No, regulations don’t destroy jobs. Let’s kill this meme.

• Considering that the Israelis and the Palestinians aren’t budging on the preconditions that would facilitate peace talks, I see no way that the clash for statehood at the United Nations is avoided. Susan Rice is right that the bid will carry consequences, but she’s got the wrong country: the consequences will be for the US.

• The Libyan rebels took a small southern town from Gadhafi loyalists, as their civil war continues.

• DiFi loaned herself $5 million to protect herself in the Kinde Durkee case. She actually has enough money to recapitalize every small Democratic club that is suffering in the Durkee scandal, and she should. Meanwhile the bank that handled the funds is under investigation.

• The Pirate Party is becoming pretty popular in Germany. Maybe Internet freedom is a winning issue or something!

• The real news peg in the story that Ron Paul would consider Dennis Kucinich for his cabinet is that Ron Paul, if elected President, plans to have a cabinet. I thought he’d just abolish every federal agency.

• The military is actually engaged in the best practice of embracing clean energy of any part of the government. They burn the most fuel, after all, so this makes sense.

• Having family there, I know something about Johnstown.  We’re lucky that only the Muslim play got banned and not, say, the Muslims themselves.

• Obama’s call for gay and lesbian rights at the UN was praiseworthy.

• Thaddeus McCotter, we hardly knew ye. This really clears the way for Newt.

• The Caliphate begins, as the Park51 Islamic community center opens.

• I’m pretty sure this fire station used in a porn movie is right near my house. Insert your own “public option” with a tactical misspelling here.

• RIP REM. Finally a band disbanding in their old age! I thought we’d never see it again.

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David Dayen

David Dayen