Okay, I made that headline up… The reality here is that the National Aeronautics and Space Administration sent a one ton landing craft–the size of a small SUV- 154 million miles and landed it on target. Mars rover Curiosity is equipped with a collection of powerful instruments, including 17 cameras (four of which were made in San Diego), lasers and a radiation detector. It features equipment that can bore into rock and ingest samples, drawing them into an on-board chemistry lab and transmitting detailed analyses back to Earth. The mission cost an estimated $2.5 billion, slightly more than one third the $7 billion that Americans spend on potato chips annually. Yesterday’s landing day coincided with the birthday of Neil Armstrong, the first moon walker. (And don’t worry, there is coverage of the UT-SD’s silly Sunday editorial predicting a Romney landslide below!)
Banksters are turning on each other in Libor probe… The New York Times reports today that financial institutions under scrutiny by international investigators are ratting each other out. More than 10 big banks, including JPMorgan, Deutsche Bank, HSBC and Citigroup are under the gun for their role in manipulating global interest rates. Trillions of dollars of consumer credit, including home mortgages and student loans are in question. Unlike the situation earlier this year , when five banking giants collectively struck a multibillion-dollar agreement with federal authorities to address foreclosure abuses, officials from financial institutions have been spreading the blame in recent meetings with authorities. Reportedly banks, are acknowledging their misdeeds, but telling investigators that actions taken at other banks were even worse. In some cases senior executives are being pointed out by name.
Romney’s San Diego tax relief plan… The Los Angeles Times reports the Presidential candidate Mitt Romney and his wife have saved over $109,000 in property tax assessments over the past four years on their La Jolla beachfront home. They paid $12 million in cash for the Mediterranean-style house with 61 feet of beach frontage, and have saved on their tax bills by appealing to San Diego County for dramatic property tax relief, while simultaneously seeking permits for demolishing the home and rebuilding on the site.
The Sunday follies… Finally, we come to the latest bit of Sunday foolishness over at the UT-San Diego. Some newspapers try to build their weekend readership with full color comics, insightful analysis and reporting or in-depth culturally oriented feature writing. Here in America’s Finest City, our Sunday fishwrap is trying to gain notice by seeing just how over-the-top they can go with their Sunday editorials. Here’s this week’s entry in a nut-no pun intended-shell:
The U-T believes there will be a landslide win for Romney, largely due to the failure of the Obama economic policies and repudiation of his attempt to move the country toward European socialism.
“How do they reach this conclusion?” you might ask. In an attempt to lend an air of credibility to their vision, the UT-Editorial Board cites “several pundits, such as Dick Morris”.
Oh. You mean the guy who’s on Fox News all the time and is never, ever right? That Dick Morris? This is the guy who described in a post over at Salon entitled “A guide to the most laughable 2012 predictions — so far” by Jim Newell, saying:
Dick Morris, whose proudly cynical, yellow-toothed, sleazy aura could pass as charming political television if he ever brought any non-wrong analyses to complement it, also thought Trump was going to run, had “a good shot at the nomination,” and “could beat Obama.” But for Morris, whose book previewing the 2008 election was titled “Condi vs. Hillary: The Next Great Presidential Race,” this wasn’t so bad.
**Predicted that Rick Lazio would beat Hillary Clinton in 2000 in the New York Senatorial race, then said six years later that GOP Senate candidate Jeanine Pirro was such a formidable opponent that Clinton would drop out of her 2006 re-election campaign (Clinton was polling at 22% advantage) 1999-2005
**His 2005 book saying it would be Hillary vs Condi in 2008 is available in Hardcover on Amazon.com for the low, low, price of 1 cent. In that tome, he contrasts Hillary’s record with that of Condoleezza Rice, whom he calls “America‘s Margaret Thatcher” and whose presidency, he says, would enrage the liberal establishment and “shatter all the glass ceilings in America.”
**He predicted that the Katrina recovery would be “a huge positive” for Bush
** Claimed every undecided voter went to John McCain in 2008. (Exit poll data, undecided voters 2008: When did you decide who to vote for?Today Obama 50, McCain 45. Last three days: Obama 47, McCain 52, Last week: Obama 48, McCain 50)
**”Socialist” Obama “going to be at 30 percent [approval] in a year” (2009)
**Dick Morris says his “final three” (for the GOP nomination) are Michelle Bachmann, Newt Gingrich and Mike Huckabee. (2011)
**September 30, 2011: On Sean Hannity’s Fox show, Dick Morris said, that after speaking with a Democratic strategist, he feels that President Obama may just pull a Lyndon Johnson and leave the 2012 Presidential race to leave the door open for a future run at the White House.
**And here’s a recent appearance on Fox News: “I guarantee you, Sean, based on what I’ve heard from third parties who I’ve been spoken to, that William Jefferson Clinton is gonna cast his ballot for Mitt Romney. However, he’s gonna open his mouth for Barack Obama because his wife is hostage. They have her under lock and key as Secretary of State. And he is scared that Obama will lose and blame him if he undermines Obama. So he’ll do everything he asks him to do and then he’ll jab him whenever he can.”
I have no prediction to make about the November elections at this point. Too many things can happen. But no matter what the outcome, when I turn to predictive analysis, I think I’ll use somebody with a decent track record, like Nate Silver over at FiveThirtyEight. Meanwhile, tune in next week for next episode of the UT-San Diego follies. The one prediction that I do feel confident in making is that the UT’s Sunday follies will be providing yours truly with material to write about for some time to come.
Tweets of the Day:
Dave Maass @DaveMaass U-T’s metric for predicting a Romney landslide: Chickfila lines.
mel shapiro (@melshap) UT editorial predicts Romney landslide My $10,000 says Obama wins. Put up or shut up,Doug.
On This Day: In 1945 an American B-29 bomber, known as the Enola Gay, dropped the first atomic bomb on an inhabited area. The bomb named “Little Boy” was dropped over the center of Hiroshima, Japan. An estimated 140,000 people were killed. In 1960 Chubby Checker performed “The Twist” on American TV for the first time on “American Bandstand.” In 1965 the Voting Rights Act was signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson.
Fun Stuff: Hey kids! Mayoral candidate Carl DeMaio is hosting a fundraiser at the Hard Rock Hotel on Tuesday, August 28th, from 6-8pm. It’s being billed as “Rock Out with Reform”; one free drink ticket per paid guest, maximum contribution $1000. RSVP
I read the Daily Fishwrap(s) so you don’t have to… Catch “the Starting Line” Monday thru Friday right here at San Diego Free Press (dot) org. Send your hate mail and ideas to DougPorter@SanDiegoFreePress.