Reason Morning Links: Public Option Returns, Bailout Perks, Ducking the Census

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• White House claims stimulus has "created or saved" 250,000 education jobs.

Census expects low response rate next year due to identity theft, home foreclosures, mistrust of government.

Biggest financial firms were boosting executive pay, perks even as they were collapsing, taking bailout money.

Public option makes a comeback in the Senate.

• South Carolina GOP chairmen pen op-ed defending Sen. Jim DeMint, explaining that he watches over taxpayer money "like a Jew." (Correction: The actual phrase "like a Jew" doesn't appear in the op-ed, and shouldn't have been put in quotes.)

NEXT: In Praise of Doing Nothing

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  1. I have nothing against the stereotype of Scots being cheap, I doubt Jews do either.

    1. I don’t know, seems pretty dicey.

      1. Scrooge McDuck.

        1. I think that’s a reference you can only make if you are Scottish or Jewish.

      2. I thought they played dice in every neighborhood but Scottish and Jewish ones?

        1. Dreidel and Dominoes!

          Well, actually grew up playing Chess, Backgammon and Dominoes.

          I never found the Driedel fun after about age 11.

          1. Did you make yours out of clay?

            1. Yeppers!

    2. Doesn’t bother me.

      1. As one who lights The Menorah, I am still not offended by the remark. My mother would wear it a badge of pride and a testament to her exceptional frugality and thrift.

        However, offering a direct quote when one was not present in the FA is offensive and not like the high-quality (if not depressing) missives you post Mr. Balko.

        Don’t imply something that isn’t there.

  2. If 36% of forms are not returned, workers may have to visit 47 million homes.

    Now, *that* is job creation.

  3. Sen. Tom Carper (D., Del.) is pushing to give states the option … to experiment on their own.

    Sweet. But isn’t something like that already in the Constitution?

  4. South Carolina GOP chairmen pen op-ed defending Sen. Jim DeMint, explaining that he watches over taxpayer money “like a Jew.

    Why do we call the GOP the ‘Stupid Party’ agian? I keep forgetting.

    1. Because they have no wise Jews?

    2. I defend Jim DeMint because I love those little after dinner candies he makes.

  5. The TPM article is out of line, and your summary is even worse. The op-ed says “There is a saying that the Jews who are wealthy got that way not by watching dollars, but instead by taking care of the pennies and the dollars taking care of themselves. By not using earmarks to fund projects for South Carolina and instead using actual bills, DeMint is watching our nation’s pennies and trying to preserve our country’s wealth and our economy’s viability to give all an opportunity to succeed.”

    The op-ed never uses the phrase “like a Jew”. That was your editorializing. The op-ed also never says “just like the Jews who are wealthy”. That’s TPM’s editorializing.

    The op-ed’s wording is clunky; it should have said “There is a Jewish saying …”. But that clearly was the intent. Casting it as TPM did, and as you have, is dishonest fabrication for cheap political points.

    1. Well put. It could have been written by Keith Olbermann.

    2. I hate to go all Lonewacko on Radley, but that is some shoddy reporting. You don’t put quotes around something unless it’s there verbatim in the original source material. That’s Journalism 101.

      1. Wasn’t there a DC court case involving a print journalist that ruled the quotes could be what you thought they meant too?

        I agree with you, not the court or my bad memory.

    3. I smell Czarist conspiracy.

    4. I was actually going to make the same comment. Certainly it doesn’t excuse the content of the op-ed, but there is a substantive difference between:

      “”There is a saying that the Jews who are wealthy got that way not by watching dollars, but instead by taking care of the pennies and the dollars taking care of themselves. By not using earmarks to fund projects for South Carolina and instead using actual bills, DeMint is watching our nation’s pennies and trying to preserve our country’s wealth and our economy’s viability to give all an opportunity to succeed.”

      and

      “There is a saying that the Jews who are wealthy got that way not by watching dollars, but instead by taking care of the pennies and the dollars taking care of themselves. DeMint is watching our nation’s pennies like a Jew, refusing to use earmarks to fund projects for South Carolina and trying to preserve our country’s wealth and our economy’s viability to give all an opportunity to succeed.”

      1. I should add, however, that I agree that the authors should not have dropped a hard J like that.

  6. Have you _read_ a census form lately?
    Just answer the first one: “How many people live at this address?” and return it.

    No need for more than that – and no problem with identity theft, either 😉

    1. I did that, ignored all their warnings about serious fines (which are misleading and in practice never imposed) and enclosed a letter saying that they’re not getting any more information out of me. I got one follow-up plea to fill it out, which I tore up. I was kind of surprised that they gave up after that.

      1. In the 1990 census, I only answered the “how many people live here” question. About a month later I got a telephone call asking me to answer the other questions. The caller kept trying to assure me that my answers were secret. I refused to answer. About a month after that, a woman from the Census called. She was very snarky. “How about this question: How old are you?” “I refuse to answer on principle.” “Well, I certainly don’t care if anyone knows how old I am.” “Good for you. I don’t either.” “So then, how old are you?” “I refuse to answer on principle.” About two weeks later, a man showed up at my door. He was very polite. He kept trying to reassure me that by law my answers were kept very secret. I kept trying to explain to him my principles in not answering. Neither of us made any headway. After that, I never heard from them again.

        1. For 2000 census I just gave my count. No calls, but I guy showed up at the door, about 3 or 4 questions in of me refusing to answer and him attempting to guess my age and race, I slammed the door in his face (well, it went the other way, but you get the idea.

  7. ? Biggest financial firms were boosting executive pay, perks even as they were collapsing, taking bailout money.

    The phrases of the day for the morons in DC are adverse selection and moral hazard. We should thank them for the textbook example.

  8. Eddie,

    Pull the other one.

    The DeMint letter isn’t talking about some folktale Jewish people tell about themselves.

    It’s talking about the stereotype among WASPs about Jews.

    I have heard the old saw about “take care of the pennies and the dollars take care of themselves” hundreds of times over decades of time and there is nothing “Jewish” about it. It’s a common expression about thrift. Applying it as it has been applied here is clearly playing to a stereotype about miserly Jews who are clever with money.

    And as for it being “clunky” wording – you’d have to be utterly and completely comfortable with the stereotype to make this kind of error. The only way you can possibly write that sentence and not backspace over it while shaking your head at yourself is if you routinely express yourself about Jews and other minorities that way and think it’s perfectly natural.

    1. Radley attributed a statement to the author IN QUOTATION MARKS that appears nowhere in the author’s writing. That’s lawsuit material.

      If what the author wrote is so terrible, then quoting what the author wrote will be sufficient to show that. No need to make something up that the author didn’t write.

    2. I think you are right. It was a racial stereotype. But, as stereotypes go it is a pretty benign one. The stereotype that Jews are good with money is about on the level of saying Asians are good with math. It was a stupid thing to say in our hyper PC world. But it is not like it was a blood libal or something.

      And I would also point out, many of TPM’s fellow travelers routinely call conservative Jews a fifth collumn. That, in contrast, really is a blood libel.

      1. The Fifth Column remark, yeah, I have to admit I do take offense.

        I would verbally cut someone to tears for that one.

    3. Wow. I’m good with money. Boo-fucking hoo, let me feel sorry for myself.

      Cut it with these stereotypes before it gets out that us Jews are remarkable in bed, too.

  9. What Fluffy said.

    But Radley, if that’s not a quote (and it does not appear to be) it should not be in quotation marks. I think it’s pretty accurate summary, but not a quote.

    1. It’s not even an accurate summary, any more than the people who said Trent Lott was endorsing racial segregation at Strom Thurmond’s 100th birthday party were accurately summarizing his remarks.

      Disclaimer: I think mentioning the word “Jews” or “Jewish” anywhere near a saying about being thrifty/cheap/stingy/niggardly is asking for trouble, and the author is a fool to do so.

      1. “There is a saying that the Jews who are wealthy got that way not by watching dollars, but instead by taking care of the pennies and the dollars taking care of themselves. By not using earmarks to fund projects for South Carolina and instead using actual bills, DeMint is watching our nation’s pennies and trying to preserve our country’s wealth and our economy’s viability to give all an opportunity to succeed.”

        So, is it more accurate to summarize it as he watches over the money like a rich Jew?

        I honestly don’t find it particularly offensive (I’m Jewish), but that’s clearly the point of the paragraph.

        1. That’s it. I am calling the Judaean People’s Front into action.

          1. Please don’t, it’s not a good time for Underzog to appear.

            1. Doesn’t that bring MNG too? Who else is in that little mid-east discussion collective?

              1. I think they might be HnR’s equivalent to the Wonder Twins. Or maybe Amos n’ Andy, in weird bizarro way.

                Suki as well, but she tends espouse Pro-Israel ideas (as do I. Not quite a Zionist, but pretty damn close).

                1. Yea, my blogger buddy and I were always pretty close on that topic.

          2. Radley’s propaganda is usually more fastidious. He knows exactly what to report and what not to report. He was probably half asleep. Or it was a Freudian slip.

        2. I am with you. I can’t see how that if offensive to Jews. Radley should know better than to rely on TPM for anything.

        3. The point of the paragraph is to flatter Jim DeMint. Comparing him to a rich Jew (in South Carolina, no less!) is not accomplishing that.

          I also don’t get how an pro-DeMint article that supposedly compares DeMint to a Jew can be considered derogatory to Jews.

      2. …niggardly…

        Anyone else remember some undergrad or graduate student who got branded a racist for using this word?

        Can’t remember if it was spoken or in print.

        1. It was a government bureaucrat (aide to the DC mayor), and it was spoken. Google the word to learn all about the incident – first hit is to a Wikipedia article about it.

          1. Julian Bond, then chairman of the NAACP, deplored the offense that had been taken at Howard’s use of the word. “You hate to think you have to censor your language to meet other people’s lack of understanding”, he said. “David Howard should not have quit. Mayor Williams should bring him back ? and order dictionaries issued to all staff who need them.”[4]

            Bond also said, “Seems to me the mayor has been niggardly in his judgment on the issue. […] We have a hair-trigger sensibility, and I think that is particularly true of racial minorities.”

            That’s a fantastic quote from the article

        2. … and the WP article describes several other incidents. Didn’t notice any about students using the word.

  10. South Carolina GOP chairmen pen op-ed defending Sen. Jim DeMint, explaining that he watches over taxpayer money “like a Jew.”

    I am sure TPM did find that offensive. In the circles they run in, saying “doing something like a Jew” means that you lock it up in an occuppied territory and eat its children.

    1. Perhaps John. Even though some may find the comments in bad taste, I am bouyed there appears to be at least ONE congress vermin that can exercise fiscal restraint regarding “bring home the bacon”.

      For the time being any way; remeber Lord John Acton.

      1. You know who doesn’t bring home the bacon?
        That’s right. The Jews.

        1. That’s right, ham it up you guys.

          1. Go pork yourselves in this sausagefest.

            Beware of STEVE SMITH!

            1. It always reaches around to Steve Smith.

  11. Fluffy, I contend the perfectly natural way to express yourself is the way eddie does it. Today’s forced hypersensitivity is anything but natural.

  12. Watch the billions, and the trillions will take care of themselves.

    1. P Brooks wins the thread.

  13. While everybody here is obsessively worried about the bagel brigade’s feelings you are forgetting the real crisis facing working families; the fact that they might only be counted once by the census now that we have been barred from making sure the numbers are politically correct!

  14. Under race I’m going to pencil in “Wise Latina.”

  15. You know who else people say is/was Jewish?

    1. Episarch, are you trying to give us an opportunity to joke about the Bob Dylan Xmas record?

      1. Bob Dylan is Jewish?!? I was talking about William Shatner.

        1. Are you sure you weren’t thinking of Nemoy?

          1. My personal favorite was “The Neal Diamond Christmas Special” on HBO years ago.

  16. Jew eat yet?

    1. I just had a little Chinese.

      1. Reminds me, I need to drop off my laundry.

  17. Woody Allen is Jewish?

    1. Yes, of the self hating variety.

      1. And quite ancient too. He must keep kicking beacause he found a Chinese secret. Probably suggested by another movie director.

      2. AKA enlightened.

  18. Woody Allen is Jewish?

    Well, yeah.

    But he’s doing his part to counteract Jewish stereotypes; he stopped being funny a long time ago.

    1. I watched Annie Hall for the first time in a long time the other day and was shocked at how unfunny it had become. Was it ever funny? Now I no longer trust my memories.
      Because of the Jews.

      1. It hasn’t aged well at all. It is just not that funny. Some of Woody Allen has aged well and is still funny. Hannah and Her Sisters is still, 23 years on, a great movie. As time goes on, that, not Anne Hall, is Allen’s best movie.

        1. John, you are way more in touch with your inner chick than I thought!

          Perhaps it’s the vulgarity that mislead me.

          How could anyone forget the classic “Everything you wanted to know about sex (but were afraid to ask)”

          Pure classic!

          1. I love that movie. The scene were Howard Cosel comments on his wedding night is great. I also like the scene where he is the sperm cell and there is one cell that is a black guy.

            1. I found the scene where he is getting chased by the giant tit and he lures it into a gigantic bra!

              Then the ominous music when it is said “But they always come in pairs…..”

      2. Now I no longer trust my memories.
        Because of the Jews.

        No that would be dementia NOS and a failure to douche

  19. And Jim Demint will go after the fed with his claw.

    1. Not “the Craw”! The Craw!

  20. Around here, the saying is that a Quaker is someone who can buy goods wholesale from a Jew and sell them retail to a Scotsman, and still make a hefty profit!

  21. Hannah and her Retarded, Obnoxious, Whining, Overdressed, Sisters?

    Seriously?

    1. Seriously. It is a very funny movie. It is a very well written and entertaining move. You just don’t like his movies so you hate it.

      1. Tbat’s it John! I can see the vaginas growing on your skin from here! You better get off that vegan diet and start chowing down on steak and burgers!

        1. You get married and it is all downhill from there.

          1. Then give divorce a try.

            1. It’s expensive because it is worth it.

              is supposed to be here, not down there

  22. It’s expensive because it is worth it.

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