Quote of the Day

“And then there is Paul Krugman, who would be the most influential columnist in the country if it weren’t for the fact that elected officials routinely refuse to listen to him. Poor Paul Krugman, our Sisyphus of elite opinion, eternally doomed to the same arguments with the same people, forever.”

Alex Pareene, Salon, in an article arguing that the NYT should dump its op-ed writers and start over.

More on the Bundy Bizarreness

From “Deadbeat on the Range,” Timothy Egan, NYT:

“Imagine a vendor on the National Mall, selling burgers and dogs, who hasn’t paid his rent in 20 years.  He refuses to recognize his landlord, the National Park Service, as a legitimate entity.  Every court has ruled against him, and fines have piled up.

“Would an armed posse come to his defense, aiming their guns at the park police?  Would the lawbreaker get prime airtime on Fox News, breathless updates in the Drudge Report, a sympathetic ear from Tea Party Republicans?  No, of course not.

“Ranching is hard work.  Drought and market swings make it a tough go in many years.  That’s all the more reason to praise the 18,000 or so ranchers who pay their grazing fees on time and don’t go whining to Fox or summoning a herd of armed thugs when they renege on their contract.  You can understand why the Nevada Cattlemen’s Association wants no part of Bundy.”

To me the story here isn’t Bundy — this country is brimming with crazies — it’s the right-wing embrace of him as a martyr, not a mashugana.  It feels as if Fox has jumped the shark in a way that their customary Benghazi/IRS/Obamacare BS never achieved.

Quote of the Day

“Certainly, many of the Snowden-fueled disclosures following the original NSA revelation have been gratuitous and harmful; those, and his sheltering in Russia rather than arguing his case in a U.S. court, raise doubts about his motives. But the original NSA leaks were justified because U.S. intelligence officials had misled the public and members of Congress about the program. There’s no value of ‘oversight’ if the overseers are being fed lies.”

Dana Milbank, WaPo

Comrade Bundy

“’We want freedom,’ [Cliven] Bundy said. I don’t know what freedom Bundy’s talking about. He does not own the land nor does he even pay the modest fees required to use it. Thousands of ranchers across the West pay fees for their businesses, but Bundy thinks he should get to use public resources to make a personal profit.  Cliven Bundy, far from being a patriot, is also clearly a straight-up communist.

“Bundy is using the language of freedom, patriotism and outright paranoia to further his business interests.”

Edwin Lyngar, “Fox News’ demented poster boy:  Why angry rancher Cliven Bundy is no patriot,” Salon