The New Kochs, Ctd. Ken Vogel of Politico: "Charles Koch, in a Sunday afternoon speech to conservative donors and GOP dignitaries, compared the causes of his conservative political and policy operation to the American Revolution, the abolitionists, suffragettes and civil rights crusaders. 'They all sought to overcome an injustice. And we, too, are seeking to right injustices that are holding our country back,' Koch said on the second day of a summit he and his brother David Koch convened the at the St. Regis Monarch Beach luxury resort, which drew 450 rich conservatives, as well as numerous leading Republican politicians.... For the Koch network, the cause is reforming the criminal justice system, and reducing government spending and regulation that conservatives believe limits prosperity for all Americans. Or, as Koch put it Sunday, 'we aim … to remove the shackles preventing all Americans, especially the disadvantaged, from pursuing their dreams.'” CW: Yes, the "disadvantaged" should be free to sell arms to Iran, pollute the environment & have offshore accounts, too. ...
... Matea Gold & James Hohmann write the Washington Post story. CW: I'm all dewy-eyed.
Paul Krugman: After writing a post criticizing "crotchety crank" Ron Paul's ever-erroneous wacko economic theories -- which he is now selling in video format! -- "I’ve received some mail from Ron Paul admirers deeply angered by the suggestion that they are not engaged in deep intellectual argument. By and large the mail reads like this:
Dear shmak, Paul Krugman!
Stop insulting Ron Paul!
You are low level Socialist/Liberal who should be jailed
your insulting writing style.
Ron Paul is Real Man with Capital M
and you are nobody!
... CW: I suspect Krugman is unfair to these writers. I'm sure he cleaned up their spelling.
Paul Krugman in the New York Times Book Review: Don't bother to buy Thomas Picketty's "new" book, because it's really 15 years old & doesn't reflect recent economic changes, new data & revised scholarship, even his own.
Carrie Dann of NBC News: "Days before the first Republican debate, Donald Trump has surged into the national lead in the GOP primary race, with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush following, a new NBC News/ Wall Street Journal poll shows. Trump is the first choice of 19 percent of GOP primary voters, while 15 percent back Walker and 14 percent back Bush. Ten percent support retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson." ...
... Steven Thomma of McClatchy News: "... the McClatchy-Marist Poll has temporarily suspended polling on primary voter choices out of concern that public polls are being misused to decide who will be in and who will be excluded. The Marist Institute for Public Opinion, which conducts the national survey, said the debate criteria assume too much precision in polls in drawing a line between candidates just a fraction apart, presume that the national polls being averaged are comparable, and turn the media sponsoring most of the polls from analysts to participants."
Kevin Cirilli of the Hill: "Donald Trump is assembling a team of political strategists and campaign staffers charged with sustaining his lead in the Republican presidential polls. While strategists say Trump still got a ways to go to catch up to his rivals for the White House, he is taking aggressive steps to build a political machine, particularly in the early voting states of Iowa and New Hampshire." ...
... Mistakes Were Made. Emily Atkin of Think Progress: "... Donald Trump said on Sunday that more power should be given to the police. 'It’s a massive crisis,' Trump said on Meet the Press, when asked about the concerns of the Black Lives Matter movement. 'Some horrible mistakes are made. At the same time, we have to give power back to the police, because crime is rampant.'” ...
... Black People Are All Alike. Emily Atkin: "In an interview with ABC News on Sunday..., [Donald Trump] said Americans wouldn’t elect another black president for a long time because of Obama’s 'poor standard.'... ' think that he has set a very low bar and I think it’s a shame for the African American people.” CW: Okay, no more white presidents because Warren Harding, Andrew Johnson, George W. Bush, etc. Sorry, Donald. I'm going for the best-qualified Inuit. ...
... Ben Jacobs of the Guardian: "The Trump campaign confirmed to the Guardian on Sunday that longtime aide Sam Nunberg had been fired, after Business Insider reported on an eight-year-old social media post. In 2007, a post on Nunberg’s Facebook page referring to the veteran civil rights campaigner Al Sharpton read: 'Meeting Rev Sharpton today, no joke – he will tell him that his daughter is N---!'” CW: Good to hear that Trump won't abide racism.
Zachary Warmbrodt of Politico: "Donald Trump made clear on Sunday that he’s not ruling out a third-party run if his bid for the Republican presidential nomination falters. In a phone interview on ABC’s 'This Week,' the billionaire businessman-turned-political celebrity said he’d have 'no interest' in running as a third-party candidate if he’s 'treated fairly' by the Republican Party but 'would certainly not give that up' if he felt burned." CW: Since the Republican party is essentially impotent, this is more a warning to Roger Ailes & Fox "News" debate questioners. ...
When people are chopping off other people's heads and then we're worried about waterboarding and we can't, because I have no doubt that that works. I have absolutely no doubt.... When you see the other side chopping off heads, waterboarding doesn't sound very severe. -- Donald Trump, on ABC's "This Week with Whomever"
... CW: There really should be more violence against teachers.
Beyond the Beltway
Hedge Clippers: "Hedge funds and billionaire hedge fund managers have swooped into Puerto Rico during a fast-moving economic crisis to prey on the vulnerable island. Several groups of hedge funds and billionaire hedge fund managers have bought up large chunks of Puerto Rican debt at discounts, pushed the island to borrow more, and are driving towards devastating austerity measures. At the same time, they are also using the island as a tax haven.... Known as 'vulture funds,' these investors have followed a similar game plan in other debt crises, in countries such as Greece and Argentina." Via Think Progress. ...
... Alice Ollstein of Think Progress: “'The reason Puerto Rico has such unsustainable debt has everything to do with the policies of austerity and the greed of large financial institutions,' said [Sen. Bernie] Sanders [I-Vt.]. He additionally noted that just seven years ago, Congress 'acted with a fierce sense of urgency to bail out Wall Street,' yet is now dragging its feet on helping the commonwealth of Puerto Rico." ...
... Lizette Alvarez & Abby Goodnough of the New York Times: "On an island where more than 60 percent of residents receive Medicare or Medicaid — an indicator of Puerto Rico’s poverty and rapidly aging population — the dwindling funds have set off outpourings of concern among patients and doctors, protest rallies and intense lobbying in Washington. And while the crisis is playing out most vividly today, its cause dates back decades and stems, in large part, from a vast disparity in federal funding for health care on the island compared with funding for the 50 states. This disparity is partly responsible for $25 billion of Puerto Rico’s $73 billion debt, as Puerto Rico’s government was forced to borrow over time to keep the Medicaid program afloat, according to economists."
AP: "The Texas attorney general, Ken Paxton, prepared on Sunday to become the latest powerful state official booked on felony charges. But unlike when Governor Rick Perry smiled for his mugshot last year, Republicans are not rushing to Paxton’s defense."
AP: "A person of 'interest' was taken into custody in connection with the fatal shooting of a police officer during a traffic stop in Memphis, police said on Sunday."
Washington Post: "Prime Minister Stephen Harper on Sunday called a parliamentary election for Oct. 19, kicking off an 11-week campaign — a marathon in Canada — that is likely to focus on a stubbornly sluggish economy and his decade in power. Polls indicate that Harper’s right-of-center Conservative Party, which has been in office since 2006, could well lose its majority in the House of Commons."