They’re Paid to Spin

Digby flags this CNBC clip of an anchor shooting down someone making shit up:

That was Hans Bader of the Competitive Enterprise Institute, which as far as I can tell is dedicated to simply spewing right wing/glibertarian nonsense across a variety of formats. It’s basically Reason magazine if they wore suits and didn’t care about weed or porn. If I remember correctly, one of them even commented here about something a while back. It is hard to tell why the Jones Act has a bug up their ass, but I guess it has to do with some more recreational union bashing.

108 replies
  1. 1
    Svensker says:

    The Jones Act is a perfect Nasty Meme Sound Bite. It’s easy to remember, sounds ominous, makes the speaker sound knowledgeable, but nobody knows what it is. Unfortunately for Bader, he actually ran into someone who DID know.

    Heh.

  2. 2
    cleek says:

    Yglesias had a decent thread about the Jones Act, a couple of days ago…

  3. 3
    Corner Stone says:

    Speaking of spinning:
    “In a Thursday interview, White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel argued that rather than recoiling against Obama, business leaders should be grateful for his support on at least a half-dozen counts: his advocacy of greater international trade and education reform open markets despite union skepticism; his rejection of calls from some quarters to nationalize banks during the financial meltdown; the rescue of the automobile industry; the fact that the overhaul of health care preserved the private delivery system; the fact that billions in the stimulus package benefited business with lucrative new contracts, and that financial regulation reform will take away the uncertainty that existed with a broken, pre-crash regulatory apparatus. “

  4. 4
    licensed to kill time says:

    I love it when the anchor said “Let me just get the facts on the table and then you can make up your own”. Also, “Excuse me Senator McCarthy, you can’t tell us how many?” Zinger!

    We need more anchors like this.

  5. 5
    BR says:

    The Yes Men is on the brain today:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DMqXwqfwu-Q

    That’s the CEI and their buddies being interviewed. (After that they ask each bobblehead to pick the image they want blue-screened behind him.)

  6. 6
    S. cerevisiae says:

    That was a righteous smackdown of CEI bullshit. Beautiful.

  7. 7
    JGabriel says:

    John Cole:

    It’s basically Reason magazine if they wore suits and didn’t care about weed or porn.

    And that’s different from a Republican how?

    .

  8. 8
  9. 9
    PeakVT says:

    Haines has a moment like this once or twice a week. The rest of the time he’s a country club-type Republican.

    CEI funding.

  10. 10
    frankdawg says:

    @PeakVT:

    A moment or two a week would still be better than 90% of whats out there.

    And yes – the attacks on the Jones Act boil down to union busting & wage depression

    Oh I almost forgot – it would also allow shippers to ignore health & safety requirements

  11. 11
    Dave S says:

    More like this, please. Many more like this. It’s so wonderful to see a journalist doing his actual job. Bravo!

  12. 12
    Brachiator says:

    @licensed to kill time:

    I love it when the anchor said “Let me just get the facts on the table and then you can make up your own”. Also, “Excuse me Senator McCarthy, you can’t tell us how many?” Zinger!

    Damn good clip. It was great to see how the program took the time to provide background and to explain exactly why the other guy was fool of shit.

    I would like it even more if an anchor ever said, “You clearly are making shit up and don’t know what you are talking about. You are welcome to come back when you have some facts, but for now I’m cutting you off and moving on.”

  13. 13
    ThresherK says:

    “Competitive Enterprise Instititute: For when the AEI and Chamber of Commerce are just too left-wing for you.”

  14. 14
    cleek says:

    listen all-y’all, it’s ’bout cabotage.

    if it weren’t for that pesky Jones Act, non-US ships could carry freight between US ports. and since non-US X is generally cheaper than US X, this would make it cheaper to ship goods from port-to-port. and that would give free market Jesus a stiffy.

    getting rid of the Jones Act would thereby decimate the US merchant marine. but free traders are OK with that. they’d outsource their own masturbation, if it was cheaper than buying Kleenex.

  15. 15
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    An anchor doing a follow-up with the right information. What a concept!

    As to the Jones Act, I don’t believe it has a union focus – that seems to be the flag the nutters like to wave, though. But it is true there would likely be no American merchant marine without it.

  16. 16
    El Cid says:

    Remember when all the crazy right screamed “LOGAN ACT!” when Nancy Pelosi went to Syria (following a bunch of Republican Congressman, but, you know, fuck it). Yeah. It was about as applicable as this Jones Act bullshit.

  17. 17
    IronyAbounds says:

    I think union-bashing is only an added plus in the wingnuts use of the Jones Act. They mostly want to portray the Obama Administration as incompetent and this fits within their desire to make the spill Obama’s Katrina. At the risk of bumping up against Godwin’s Law, the right wing uses THE BIG LIE over and over and over again. This is just another example.

  18. 18
    Mark S. says:

    David Gregory would never stoop this low.

  19. 19
    cleek says:

    McCain sponsored a bill to completely repeal the Jones Act, on 6/25/10. he said:

    “Today I am pleased to introduce legislation that would fully repeal the Jones Act, a 1920s law that hinders free trade and favors labor unions over consumers. Specifically, the Jones Act requires that all goods shipped between waterborne ports of the United States be carried by vessels built in the United States and owned and operated by Americans. This restriction only serves to raise shipping costs, thereby making U.S. farmers less competitive and increasing costs for American consumers”.

    it’s all about the free trade.

  20. 20
    MikeJ says:

    Wouldn’t it be awesome if every ferry, commercial fisherman, tug, and light freighter that was moored in American ports flew a Liberian flag?

    If you think having zero safety, pollution, or labour standards is great, repeal the Jones act.

  21. 21
    licensed to kill time says:

    @Brachiator:

    The “cutting you off and moving on” part sounds a bit too O’Reillyish for me, but I’d love to see:

    Anchor: “Let me get the facts on the table and then you can make things up.”
    Interviewee: “babblebabble, watch me pull these words out of my ass,etc”
    Anchor: “Well, that was interesting, but let me reiterate the actual facts once again for our viewers at home.”

  22. 22
    MikeJ says:

    Related reading.

  23. 23
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @IronyAbounds:

    As far as I know, only about a quarter of licensed US mariners belong to a union. Most are employees of the shipping or drilling company, but some are hired on a per-job basis directly out of union halls.

  24. 24
    lawnorder says:

    Is it just me or the way he says Mr. Bader sounds funny ?

  25. 25
    MattF says:

    Right wingers are often flat-out irrational about unions, so it’s not surprising that the bullshit here was swirling around an accusation that Obama’s policies were all about protecting unions.

    I remember, some years ago, I was watching an interview of ol’ Newt Gingrich on CSPAN– and he was, truth to tell, saying some interesting things. And then the subject turned to unions, and, well, his face turned red, his hair uncurled and stood up on end, and steam started coming out of his ears. No, really.

  26. 26
    PeakVT says:

    @cleek: Heck, why have Americans do any job in the US? Just think about how much money corporations could save. We’d all be rich!

  27. 27
    Brachiator says:

    @licensed to kill time:

    The “cutting you off and moving on” part sounds a bit too O’Reillyish for me, but I’d love to see:
    __
    Anchor: “Let me get the facts on the table and then you can make things up.”

    I have a problem with anchors agreeing to let people make shit up on news programs. If you have your facts wrong, you’re wasting the viewers’ time.

    Being rough might discourage the worst practitioners of this stuff.

    I would give more leeway to commentary shows, since most of that crap is political kabuki anyway and facts just get in the way of preening performance.

  28. 28
    MikeJ says:

    @MattF:

    his hair uncurled and stood up on end,

    Like the fretful porpentine?

  29. 29
    jaleh says:

    Why don’t all journalists do this? and this guy is not even a journalist…

  30. 30
    wasabi gasp says:

    That imaginative fella was a guest on the show. The host was just so rude, I’d never want to play tea time at a pajama party with him.

  31. 31

    How wingnuts can bring themselves to flush their toilets when it could cause the earth to spin out of orbit is beyond me.

  32. 32
    patrick II says:

    @cleek: “they’d outsource their own masturbation, if it was cheaper than buying Kleenex. “

    I don’t think that’s much of an insult. I outsource mine whenever possible.

  33. 33
    licensed to kill time says:

    @Brachiator: True.

    Frankly, I’d like to see a court jester in bells gesticulating wildly and poking the bums with a taser while shouting “You lie!” and mugging for the camera and doing backflips as the liar writhes on the floor in agony and the anchor calmly rebuts the lies one by one but I doubt that will happen either.

    I can daydream, though ;-)

  34. 34
    generallyspeaking says:

    The Heritage Foundation’s top ten ‘oil spill to do list’… has “Waive the Jones Act” as number one. You can see the list at Smirkingchimp.com in a Bill Berkowitz post or you can go to the HF website for it. Definitely evil.

  35. 35
    cat48 says:

    Haines has worked over Scarborough a few times so Joe no longer messes with him. Haines occasionally fills in when Erin Burnett is off for the short segment they do every am on MJ & he takes no crap from Joe so I had a lot of respect for him before this. He has to be in the mood though is the only problem.

  36. 36
    monkeyboy says:

    @cleek:

    McCain sponsored a bill to completely repeal the Jones Act, on 6/25/10. he said:

    “… legislation that would fully repeal the Jones Act … law that hinders free trade and favors labor unions over consumers …”

    Yet another example of how Americans are being urged to give up their freedoms for the non-freedom of low low prices for consumers.

    An American owned and manned merchant marine promotes a lot of freedoms.

  37. 37
    bemused says:

    @cleek:
    McCain says the law favors labor unions over consumers therefore labor union members are not also consumers. Brilliant.

  38. 38
    red plaid says:

    OT:

    Congratulations on the Slashdot mention! I wonder if you will see more traffic, though it is a slow Saturday.

  39. 39
    Thoughtcrime says:

    Unfortunately Haines didn’t mention another important aspect of the Jones Act:

    A domestic shipper that benefits from the act has the obligation to surrender vessels from its fleet in times of war if requested by the US Government. APL did this during the first gulf war. Some of you oldsters may remember Matson giving up its vessels during WWII http://www.matson.com/corporat.....story.html :

    Wartime Service
    Immediately after the December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor, the passenger liners Lurline, Matsonia, Mariposa and Monterey, and 33 Matson freighters were called to military service. The four passenger liners completed a wartime total of 119 voyages, covered 1 1/2 million miles and carried a total of 736,000 troops. The post-war period for Matson was somewhat difficult. The expense of restoration work proved to be very costly and necessitated the sale of the Mariposa and Monterey, still in wartime gray. In 1948, the Lurline returned to service after a $20 million reconversion. Two new Matson hotels were built on Waikiki in the 1950s, the SurfRider in 1951 and the Princess Kaiulani in 1955. In 1955, Matson undertook a $60 million shipbuilding program which produced the South Pacific liners Mariposa and Monterey, and the rebuilt wartime Monterey was renamed Matsonia and entered the Pacific Coast – Hawaii service.

    But I guess patriots like Hans Bader don’t care if the USA doesn’t have a domestic fleet or merchant marine to call upon in times of war. Maybe China will lease its vessels to us in a pinch.

  40. 40
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @Thoughtcrime:

    Not only that but the merchant marine plays an important role in military support generally via the Military Sealift Command:

    Military Sealift Command operates approximately 110 noncombatant, civilian-crewed ships that replenish U.S. Navy ships, conduct specialized missions, strategically preposition combat cargo at sea around the world and move military cargo and supplies used by deployed U.S. forces and coalition partners.

  41. 41
    PaminBB says:

    On the one hand, the right wingers extol the virtues of America in the 50’s, when the middle class was at it’s peak. On the other hand, they advocate policies that, taken to a logical conclusion, will have us living in a feudal society. I guess that’s the problem with never thing further ahead than the next buck to be made.

  42. 42
    MikeJ says:

    I wonder if anybody has asked the people at King’s Point what they think of repealing the Jones Act? You know, one of the US’s service academies.

  43. 43
    Mnemosyne says:

    @cleek:

    You know, I will freely admit to not knowing a huge amount about shipping, but why exactly does McCain think it’s a great idea for our food supply to be controlled by foreign countries?

  44. 44
    Brachiator says:

    @licensed to kill time:

    Frankly, I’d like to see a court jester in bells gesticulating wildly and poking the bums with a taser while shouting “You lie!” and mugging for the camera and doing backflips as the liar writhes on the floor in agony and the anchor calmly rebuts the lies one by one but I doubt that will happen either.

    Hah! I would pay good money to see something like this. It would be fun to watch the remaining guests on the show either hastily rewrite their notes or quietly try to slink off the show.

    Of course, if you ever tried this on somebody like Darth Cheney, he would just respond with one of his triumphant grimaces and thank you for charging his battery.

    It also both amuses and saddens me to note that about the only place where lying goons are regularly exposed and mocked is a comedy program, The Daily Show.

  45. 45

    it’s all about the free trade.

    It’s all about a bug that happens by the lizard, and like any good lizard, it snatches the little fucker without remorse. There is no more to that story.

  46. 46
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @Thoughtcrime:

    Not only that but the merchant marine plays an important role in military support generally via the Military Sealift Command:

    Military Sealift Command operates approximately 110 noncombatant, civilian-crewed ships that replenish U.S. Navy ships, conduct specia lized missions, strategically preposition combat cargo at sea around the world and move military cargo and supplies used by deployed U.S. forces and coalition partners.

  47. 47
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    Hmm, my comment went down the black hole. Is it because it contained the word “spe ci al ized” ?

    Edit: Evidently so. In which case, here it is again, fixt:

    ————————————

    @Thoughtcrime:

    Not only that but the merchant marine plays an important role in military support generally via the Military Sealift Command:

    Military Sealift Command operates approximately 110 noncombatant, civilian-crewed ships that replenish U.S. Navy ships, conduct spe cia liz ed missions, strategically preposition combat cargo at sea around the world and move military cargo and supplies used by deployed U.S. forces and coalition partners.

  48. 48
    John Bird says:

    It’d be nice to see a split-screen between one of these CEI fops and an actual merchant marine, so the suited-up snob can try to explain to this burly American Joe why goods shipped between American ports shouldn’t be handled by Americans.

    Hell, stick McCain in there for good measure.

  49. 49

    zuzu! zuzu!! where did you go. WP done et you. I haz a sad.

  50. 50
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    Alert to mods: My comment keeps sliding down the black hole. Last attempt was evidently marked as spam.

    Argggh.

  51. 51
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @General Stuck:

    Heeeellllppp!

  52. 52
    RSA says:

    @cleek:

    McCain sponsored a bill to completely repeal the Jones Act, on 6/25/10.

    A few years ago McCain also voted against funding to improve port security, an issue that’s not directly related to the Jones Act but isn’t completely negligible, I think.

  53. 53
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    Testing, testing.

    Is every darn thing I write now going straight to the recycle bin?!

  54. 54
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @John Bird:

    Maybe while he’s at it he can tell Grumpy Pants that the American merchant Marine suffered the HIGHEST casualty rate of all the services during WWII.

    Wanker.

  55. 55

    @licensed to kill time: I find your programming ideas intriguing and wish to subscribe to your podcast.

  56. 56

    @WereBear (itouch): wanna subscribe to my newsletter? It’s free, but add 50 hundred cents for postage and scammeling.

  57. 57
    ericblair says:

    @John Bird:

    It’d be nice to see a split-screen between one of these CEI fops and an actual merchant marine, so the suited-up snob can try to explain to this burly American Joe why goods shipped between American ports shouldn’t be handled by Americans.

    Why split screen? I want them in the same room. They could even move it to pay-per-view and I’d cough up a few clams for it.

  58. 58
    thalarctos says:

    @lawnorder: yep, he’s a master, Bader.

  59. 59
    Mark S. says:

    I learned in 2008 that John McCain is a demented old man. In a civilized country, he would be put in a safe home where he wouldn’t be a danger to himself or others. Instead, he gets paraded on Sunday morning talk shows like some freak show for people to laugh at. It is just cruel.

  60. 60
    mai naem says:

    I’ve seen Mark Haines be like this but he can also be quite republican/libertarian. The guy I can’t stand on Squawk Box is Joe Kernen who’s a total rightwing BS artiste.

  61. 61

    Good news out of South Carolina

    Alvin Greene (D) will face no state charges over the $10,440 filing fee for his successful bid to win South Carolina’s Democratic nomination to run for U.S. Senate, the AP reports.

    Police also opted not to charge Greene with misrepresenting his finances to a court where he was appointed a public defender to represent him on a pending obscenity charge.

    I’d say his campaign is off to a dandy start. He’s broke, unemployed and facing sex charges. IOW’s, your average politician.

    An Actblue account would be nice Mr. Cole.

  62. 62
    El Cid says:

    I wish we could be occupying other nations for another 20 or 30 years. After all, we have a new and improved counter-insurgency strategy, so, we know what we’re doing.

    Casey: U.S. Could be at War Another Decade
    __
    Christine Delargey | CBS News
    __
    General George Casey, the Chief of Staff of the Army, said today the United States could face another “decade or so” of persistent conflict in Iraq and Afghanistan.
    __
    In two months, the U.S. will have been at war in Afghanistan for nine years.
    __
    The four-star general said the U.S. military moved beyond conventional warfare in Iraq and Afghanistan “long ago,” and that the focus is now on the people. Casey highlighted job, education and economic growth as essential to success in Iraq and Afghanistan.
    __
    When asked if enemies of the U.S. have to be a part of the reconciliation process for it to be considered a success, Casey said that is a “matter of debate,” but that enemies have to be convinced they will lose.
    __
    In a follow-up statement to CBS News, a spokesperson for Gen. Casey, Lt. Col. Rich Spjegel, said that “General Casey was speaking of the types of conflict we will be fighting for a decade or so. He did not, nor did he intend to, imply that we would be fighting in Iraq or Afghanistan for 10 more years.”

    No, no, no, we won’t be fighting in Iraq or Afghanistan for 10 more years, we’ll be there doing something entirely different under completely different names, and it will be nothing at all like being at war.

    Also, we have a great track record of helping devastated (or in the case of Afghanistan, never at all developed) 3rd world economies with growth and employment, and surely we can just carry over there the massive knowledge we have gathered fixing the problems back home.

  63. 63
    KyCole says:

    I know this is totally OT, but where can I watch today’s World Cup game on line? I’ve been at work all day and I missed it.

  64. 64
    Elise says:

    Actually, Digby didn’t flag anything. Think Progress did – and they did it yesterday.

  65. 65
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    Yay, I’m out of WP purgatory…thanks John!

    Since my comments are now buried upthread, I’ll post the links here and here.

  66. 66
    ChrisB says:

    I particularly like the other CNBC guy saying “Easy, Mark, easy” at the 1:05 mark and the other guest laughing in the upper right window.

    This is not the first time Haines has refused to accept a guest’s bullshit and he deserves credit for it. He does have to be in the mood to do so, as others have mentioned.Still, it’s nice to see a conservative who rejects right wing lies. Too bad the liberal mainstream media can’t do the same.

    Not bad for a graduate from a state school.

  67. 67
    kay says:

    @Zuzu’s Petals:

    Maybe a stupid question, but did you ever read Looking For A Ship?

    I loved that book.

  68. 68
    ChrisB says:

    @KyCole: Highlights on ESPN right now.

    Try espn3.com for the entire game

  69. 69
    r€nato says:

    Just who does this Mr. Haines think he is? Doesn’t he know his job is to simply mindlessly moderate between two equally valid points of view? This uncalled-for act of journalism shall not go unpunished!

  70. 70
    HLS Grad says:

    I always wondered what happened to Hans after law school — he was pretty much the kind of idiot in person that you’d expect from that clip. No interpersonal skills, mediocre thinker at best, but really good at parroting wingnut claptrap.

  71. 71

    As I wrote on my blog last month…

    The Jones Act, which is Section 27 of the Merchant Marine Act of 1920, is a United States Federal statute that regulates maritime commerce in U.S. waters and between U.S. ports. It requires that all goods transported by water between U.S. ports be carried in U.S.-flag ships, constructed in the United States, owned by U.S. citizens, and crewed by U.S. citizens and U.S. permanent residents. The purpose of the law was to support the U.S. merchant marine industry, specifically the union bosses who build ships in the US (although the extensive unionization largely destroyed the US shipbuilding industry) and the union bosses who crew ships registered to the US (although the extensive unionization forced most ships to register elsewhere). Many opposed the law because of its anti-free market approach, specifically agricultural interests who argued that it drastically raises the costs of shipping agricultural products.

    This act effectively forbids foreign nations from assisting the US in times of need by banning ships flagged, crewed, constructed, or owned by other nations from transporting cargo from one US port to another US port. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff temporarily waived the U.S. Shipping Act for foreign vessels carrying oil and Natural gas from September 1 to 19, 2005, in order to help in the recovery efforts- ie, government got out of the way in order to improve the situation.

    As of today, the Obama administration has not waived the Jones Act. When White House Spokesman Robert Gibbs was asked about it, he had a flippant answer that is characteristic of the Obama White House- “If there is the need for any type of waiver, that would obviously be granted. But, we’ve not had that problem thus far.” Oh, if only that were true.

    Part of the reason that the Obama administration may have turned down the offer of help from the Dutch government is that it would have required the waiver of the Jones Act, and Obama, under pressure from the labor unions, was not even willing to think about doing that, even if doing so would have saved our nation billions in cleanup costs and saved the jobs of thousands of Gulf residents and saved thousands of animal lives.

    Don’t kid yourself- there is a lot that the government can do to help the situation in the Gulf- like getting the heck out of the way of people who want to help. Obama could have waived the Jones Act and allowed foreign ships to assist in transporting goods (like oil-skimming booms) in order to help clean up the mess. But he didn’t. Obama refused to waive the Jones Act. Likely he didn’t even know about it (the reaction by the White House to the Gulf spill is increasingly being described as confused, muddled, unintelligent, uninformed, and amateurish), but that doesn’t matter- as President of the United States of America, it is up to him to figure out how to get the federal government out of the way of people who want to help us in times of need. He didn’t. Hold him accountable.

  72. 72

    @A Conservative Teacher:

    Please explain how a cabinet chief can waive a public law when he wants, at least legally. Is there a clause that allows this? Maybe Obama doesn’t believe he has such power, without an act of congress. Being prompted by union disfavor, sounds more like a wingnut conspiracy theory than anything else. I know following laws is not popular with conservatives, so what else you have?

  73. 73
    monkeyboy says:

    @A Conservative Teacher:

    Are you being paid to regurgitate bogus GOP talking points even after it has been shown the the Jones act has had no effect on the spill cleanup?

  74. 74
    kay says:

    @A Conservative Teacher:

    Part of the reason that the Obama administration may have turned down the offer of help from the Dutch government is that it would have required the waiver of the Jones Act, and Obama, under pressure from the labor unions, was not even willing to think about doing that, even if doing so would have saved our nation billions in cleanup costs and saved the jobs of thousands of Gulf residents and saved thousands of animal lives.

    Come on. I googled your blog. This is pure conjecture on your part. You link to a single FOX news report to buttress these claims?

    I’m concerned that you’re a public high school teacher.

    Would you accept this from your students as factual information?

    It’s an editorial.

    Your bald assertion that “part of the reason Obama may have” and then your ridiculous jump to billions in clean up costs and thousands of jobs is completely unsupported.

    Again: honesty. You object to union labor. That’s clear from this screed. Fine. Make an honest argument against union labor. Don’t hide behind this bullshit.

  75. 75
    hamletta says:

    @Zuzu’s Petals: Ever seen The Long Voyage Home? It’s a John Ford joint about a merchant marine ship based on some one-act plays by Eugene O’Neill.

    Kinda depressing, but kinda wonderful.

  76. 76
    kay says:

    @A Conservative Teacher:

    Stop comparing it to Katrina. It’s incorrect. The oil spill response is governed by the Oil Pollution Act, and it is a completely different situation.

    It’s a cable news meme to compare to Katrina. It’s lazy.

    “According to the Deepwater Horizon response team: “A Jones Act waiver was granted during Hurricane Katrina due to the significant disruption in the production and transportation of petroleum and/or refined petroleum products in the region during that emergency and the impact this had on national defense.” The Deepwater Horizon spill has yet to affect infrastructure or oil and gas availability; the damage is environmental, and foreign vessels are approved for delivering resources and conducting offshore skimming. Although the Jones Act is currently not applicable, the federal government has taken steps to expedite the waiver process should the oil spill response require a Jones Act waiver for trade and commerce.

    Also, contrary to reports such as the one on “Fox & Friends,” international assistance has been accepted. To date, 25 countries and four international organizations have offered support in the form of skimming vessels, containment and fire boom, technical assistance and response solutions, among others. A chart provided by the State Department shows that as of June 23 offers from six foreign countries or entities had been accepted. Fifty more offers were under consideration — including multiple offers from a single country or entity. One offer had been declined: France offered a chemical dispersant that is not approved for use in the United States. President Barack Obama described this process in his May 27 press conference.

    This Jones Act nonsense has been debunked over and over again.

    It is not the President’s job to lead conservatives to accurate information.

  77. 77
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @kay:

    I’ve only read parts, but they say McPhee gets it right.

  78. 78
    kay says:

    @Zuzu’s Petals:

    It was great. They mention pirates! Captain Washburn would have been a great character in a novel, and apparently he existed.

  79. 79
    PeakVT says:

    Casey: U.S. Could be at War Another Decade

    Shoot me now.

  80. 80
    kay says:

    @A Conservative Teacher:

    “Retired Coast Guard Captain Dennis Bryant of Gainesville practiced maritime law for 15 years. Some lawmakers say they’ve heard the Jones Act is stopping foreign oil skimmers from helping with the oil spill cleanup. But Bryant says the law probably isn’t to blame. “The impediment, if there is one, has been that there hasn’t been a valid offer for a foreign response vessel,” he notes…”The amount of oil spill response vessels in the world is not that great.” Bryant also points out that, since the strictest provisions of the Jones Act only apply within 3 miles of the US coast, it’s easier for foreign ships to help with cleanup operations farther out in the Gulf, near the Deepwater Horizon well itself. In fact, the ship siphoning oil from Deepwater Horizon’s broken wellhead is a foreign-flagged ship; the Discoverer Enterprise was built in Spain and flies the Marshall Islands flag. Also, Bryant says the Jones Act waiver process has been fast-tracked like it was during Hurricane Katrina, so if any foreign ship wants to help closer to the shore, it could have a waiver within 48 hours.

    Grapple with that, if you’re going to write a screed on your blog and reprint it here.

    Fact: strictest provisions apply only within 3 miles of shore.

    That wasn’t in the FOX report. Why is that? It’s certainly important, and the Coast Guard Commander has repeated it over and over to media.

    Explain that, in light of the unsupported allegations you made in your post. Tell me how the Jones Act is hindering the clean up, specifically.

  81. 81
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @A Conservative Teacher:

    Evidently you didn’t even bother to watch the video that was the subject of this post. If you had, you would know that the claim that Dutch assistance was refused because of the Jones Act is complete nonsense.

    As to Jones Act waivers, you don’t seem to have bothered to read what the Unified Command has said on the matter. For instance, as of June 15:

    Currently, 15 foreign-flagged vessels are involved in the largest response to an oil spill in U.S. history. No Jones Act waivers have been granted because none of these vessels have required such a waiver to conduct their operations in the Gulf of Mexico.

    To date, the administration has leveraged assets and skills from numerous foreign countries and international organizations as part of this historic, all-hands-on-deck response, including Canada, Germany, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, the United Nations’ International Maritime Organization and the European Union’s Monitoring and Information Centre. In some cases, offers of international assistance have been turned down because the offer didn’t fit the needs of the response.

    Even if the Jones Act applies, a foreign flagged vessel can still conduct certain planned operations as part of the BP oil spill response if the vessel is an oil spill response vessel and meets the requirements of 46 USC § 55113.

    In addition, I find your claim about ships registered to the US being crewed by “union bosses” interesting, since only 24% of US mariners belong to a union. And those union members are typically hired out of a union hall for oceangoing voyages, not the shorter domestic runs.

    So please support your claim that Obama was influenced by unions in this matter. With objective fact, not opinion.

  82. 82
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @hamletta:

    No, never heard of it. Will check it out, thanks.

  83. 83

    @A Conservative Teacher:

    You know, Conservative Liar, if President Bush hadn’t been completely useless and corrupt he would have had MMS properly regulate BP and make sure that they had adequate safety standards in place as well as an adequate disaster recovery plan then President Obama wouldn’t be in the position of having to clean this mess up. In short shut your conservative pie hole. This is another conservative disaster that filth like you bought about and then left for someone else to clean up.

    Human garbage such as yourself with your nonsensical conservative economic and political theories, theories which are as nonsensical and hateful as anything ever spouted by Pol Pot, Osama Bin Laden, Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin, Kim Il Sung or Vladimir Lenin have bought this country to the brink of ruin. Who needs Al Qaeda flying planes into buildings when we have the Republican party and American conservatives working as hard as they can to destroy the United States.

    Oh, and if you were a real conservative who really believed in your principles you’d get a job in the private sector. The fact that you haven’t indicates to me that you’re probably one of the coddled, incompetents who only has a job because he’s protected by the NEA. Of course this isn’t surprising, I mean really, how many conservatives actually practice what they preach? Damn few, most of you have never served your country, live in red states that consume more in federal spending than they pay in federal taxes and preach morality and the Bible before going off to fellate total strangers in airport toilets or pay high priced hookers to dress you up in diapers. Conservatives are the biggest hypocrites in the country, the concepts of leadership by example, responsibility and good citizenship are completely and totally alien to them.

  84. 84
    kay says:

    @A Conservative Teacher:

    I have to tell you I find it incredibly irresponsible that GOP lawmakers say they “have heard” that the Jones Act is restricting clean up. That’s a remarkable thing to say.

    Where did they hear that? NPR contacted a maritime lawyer who says that isn’t true. I would think a member of the US Congress could call a lawyer before weighing in.

    So where did they “hear” that? Fox and Friends, right?

  85. 85
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @kay:

    I gave it to my son many years ago…maybe I’ll suggest it for my book club so I’ll finally get around to reading it myself.

    Some books are hard to read. It was a long time before I could read “The Perfect Storm,” though my son told me there’s been a copy on every ship and rig he’s ever worked on.

  86. 86
    kay says:

    @Zuzu’s Petals:

    Conservative lawmakers pulled it out of their ass, Zuzu.

    When NPR tried to pin them down they went to “we have heard”.

    My 16 year old juvenile delinquents do better than that when caught in a lie. Much better.

  87. 87

    @A Conservative Teacher:

    There’s just so much irony here. Firstly what’s the topic of this post? It’s about how conservatives just make shit up and pull things out of their ass and then insist that they’re facts, something they’ve been getting away with since time immemorial. Then we have Conservative Teacher come in here and pull a bunch of stuff out of his ass, or Roger Ailes ass as the case may be, and reiterate a bunch of bullshit Faux Noise talking points, insisting that they’re facts. Then of course there’s the irony of “Conservative Teacher”. What’s the matter you weakling, can’t hack it in the private sector? You should fall to your knees and thank Jesus for your cushy public sector job that’s insulated from reality because you wouldn’t last a week in private employment. Conservative Teacher, hell, Conservative Hypocritical Loser is more like it.

  88. 88
    kay says:

    @Zuzu’s Petals:

    The movie made my palms sweat. I don’t think I’ll read the book.

    I took sailing lessons last week with a group of children (50 bucks, beginners, I need a lesson, I’m a beginner, the instructors let me tag along). I’m tired of being the clueless person on the boat everyone else barks out orders to.

    It was really fun, once I got over the awkwardness of being the only adult. I may have to purchase a used Sunfish.

  89. 89
    Mark S. says:

    @A Conservative Teacher:

    Can you go teach somewhere else? I haven’t been this annoyed with a troll since Makewi.

  90. 90
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @Wile E. Quixote:

    I gave in and went over and looked at his blog.

    I hope to God he doesn’t teach writing.

  91. 91
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @kay:

    I would’ve liked to have heard that piece. Maybe I’ll look it up for future reference.

  92. 92
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @kay:

    I know. I just can’t watch “Deadliest Catch.”

    Great you are learning to sail. Lake Michigan, right?

  93. 93
    Brachiator says:

    @kay:

    I have to tell you I find it incredibly irresponsible that GOP lawmakers say they “have heard” that the Jones Act is restricting clean up. That’s a remarkable thing to say.

    Sadly, this is very useful to the GOP. A Conservative Teacher’s post shows how the conservatives craft the anti-government, anti-regulation lie that the federal government in general and the Obama Administration in particular gets in the way of the prosperity and general wonderfulness that would erupt if only business were left alone.

    The GOP first tried to float this as general principles: the free market is wonderful.

    But that didn’t quite work, especially since people were wondering exactly how things got so messed up during Bush’s presidency.

    So now they have to lie outright. And they have Sarah Palin and the teabaggers to amplify their BS.

  94. 94
    kay says:

    @Zuzu’s Petals:

    Yeah. Michigan. We sometimes go to Superior or Erie, but this was Michigan.

    I have spent a lot of time on sail boats, ducking, basically, and trying to stay out of everyone’s way, but it’s completely different alone. Well, not “alone” : with two instructors and a fishing boat waiting to pick us up if we capsized.

  95. 95
    kay says:

    @Wile E. Quixote:

    Firstly what’s the topic of this post? It’s about how conservatives just make shit up and pull things out of their ass and then insist that they’re facts, something they’ve been getting away with since time immemorial

    Very funny, as usual, Wile.

  96. 96
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @kay:

    I learned to sail in a little sabot while growing up in Southern California. Never was very good, though…the tacking back was too tricky for me. But there is something wonderful about being out in your own little boat.

  97. 97
    AhabTRuler says:

    @Zuzu’s Petals: A classic example of the importance of a native domestic shipping industry is the Falkland Island war. The RN was heavily dependent on what they call, in the way that they do, STUFT (Ships Taken Up From Trade), which included several each of passenger liners, RO/RO ferries, container ships, and oil tankers. The RFAs (Royal Fleet Auxiliaries were limited to underway replenishment oilers and assorted stores ship, IIRC.

    The STUFT were actually a critical part of RN war plans, in that they allowed the fleet to minimize its active auxiliary fleet, which obviously reduced costs at a time of minimal naval budgets. Quite simply, the RN would have been unable to project force so distant from a friendly base without the planning and cooperation of British trade and the merchant marine.

  98. 98
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @AhabTRuler:

    Our own MSC was an integral part of the two Gulf Wars:

    During the first Persian Gulf War, consisting of Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm, MSC distinguished itself as the largest source of defense transportation of any nation involved. Command resources were tasked to deliver more than 12 million tons (11 million metric tonnes) of wheeled and tracked vehicles, helicopters, ammunition, dry cargo, fuel and other supplies and equipment during the war. At the high point of the war, more than 230 government-owned and chartered ships delivering the largest part of the international arsenal that defeated Saddam Hussein in Iraq. MSC was also involved in the second Persian Gulf War, Operation Iraqi Freedom, delivering 61,000,000 square feet (5.7 km2) of cargo and 1,100,000,000 US gallons (4,200,000 m3) of fuel by the end of the first year.

    Not that I supported either war. But it astounds me that people like McCain who should know better, do not see the support of the American maritime industry as a matter of national security.

  99. 99
    Mona says:

    John Cole, I love you — you know I do — but Reason is so not the dressed-down version of the AEI. Not even sort of. Now some of their writers have certainly been too neocon in their foreign policy views, and some seem detached from certain realities that clash with simplistic libertarian templates.

    But. Nick Gillespie or Jesse Walker are not merely or even somewhat Republican. Nor is Ron Bailey, who voted a straight Dem ticket in ‘o6. Julian Sanchez is no longer working at Reason (I think) but he is of recent Reason vintage and is quite sane on war and civil liberties.

    They’ve blogged positively at Hit ‘n Run about Greenwald and highlighted his critiques of both parties on terror and civil libertarian issues. (And yes, also about Greenwald’s Cato-issued report about Portugal’s successful decriminalization of virtually all mood-altering drugs.)

  100. 100
    kay says:

    @Brachiator:

    During the 2005 Social Security debate, Bush and Cheney were touring the country saying that black people die younger than white people, so were being cheated by the Social Security scheme.

    Except it wasn’t true. Bush was relying on actuarial tables, that measure from live birth to death. The bulk of the “longevity” difference occurs prior to age 18, when (minority) babies and children die at higher rates, poor prenatal care, etc. If you make it to 18, there’s not much difference between longevity rates between races. And, of course, you’re only paying into Social Security as a wage earner, so the years prior to 18 don’t matter in terms of rate of return.

    It turned out that Bush and Cheney has probably pulled the erroneous talking point from a Heritage Foundation paper circa 1986. They used it A LOT. I heard it over and over.

    In that instance, the media response was pretty good. The claim was widely and completely debunked, so much so that Bush stopped making the claim at “Social Security Town Halls” (eventually).

    Still, you have to wonder about this small closed circle they operate in, where misinformation gets passed as irrefutable fact, over decades.

    I’m waiting for that Social Security lie to re-appear. I know it’s coming.

  101. 101
    kay says:

    @Zuzu’s Petals:

    That is an extremely cute little boat, Zuzu. It looks about as big as a bathtub, though.

    It’s a toy boat :)

  102. 102
    Zuzu's Petals says:

    @kay:

    Well it was just right for an 8-year-old kid.

    I do have memories of almost being run over by John Wayne’s big honkin’ yacht though.

  103. 103
    Honus says:

    @Zuzu’s Petals: True. That’s what I tell people right after I point out that Woody Guthrie served in the Merchant Marine in WWII.

  104. 104
    That's Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN) says:

    So, let me get this straight. Even if we were to assume that the conservatives have their facts straight here, their objection is that the president is upholding his constitutional duty to enforce the law?

    Why does this not surprise me?

  105. 105
    tworivers says:

    With the plethora of things going horribly wrong in the world this guy is worked up about one offer of foreign help getting rejected due to the Jones Act? What a fucking wanker. Obviously he’s looking anywhere and everywhere for something he can express righteous glibertarian indignation about. Meanwhile the world is going to hell in a handbasket all around him.

    As we saw with Rand Paul (and I’m stealing from John Cole a bit here), this guy’s libertarian theories are more important to him than the demands of any real world situation. The people be damned – as long as his glibertarian world-view remains consistent, steadfast and true, all is good.

    Fuck him and the horse he rode in on.

    Actually don’t fuck the horse – give the horse a carrot.

  106. 106
    tootiredoftheright says:

    “With the plethora of things going horribly wrong in the world this guy is worked up about one offer of foreign help getting rejected due to the Jones Act?”

    Fox News and even a number of liberals were also worked up about it like it was the only offer on the table or that it would have solved the problem.

    One offer out of 60 accepted offers. Plus a number of these offers were in fact requests to buy equipment not have it be accepted for free. A number of Katrina offers were also rejected from several countries like Cuba.

  107. 107
    Brachiator says:

    @That’s Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN):

    So, let me get this straight. Even if we were to assume that the conservatives have their facts straight here, their objection is that the president is upholding his constitutional duty to enforce the law?

    I think the conservatives are not just attacking unions, but also trying to sell the idea that the only laws that should be enforced are those that get the government “out of the way of the free market.” So, apparently not only are “activist judges” bad for the country, so is an “activist” president.

    The GOP is doubling down on insanity. The weird thing is that tea baggers and increasingly large groups of citizens are buying it.

  108. 108
    daryljfontaine says:

    On a semi-related note, when did Digby’s commentariat devolve into Shitheel Central? I see a bunch of fucking idiots over there repeating the exact same fucking idiot lies and then high-fiving each other over fucking idiot insults. With a small handful of determined people providing the facts, trying to hold down the fort against the onslaught of fucking idiocy.

    Compare to A Conservative Wanker, who was called out repeatedly and in force here by the locals, and who was apparently a fire-and-forget troll.

    D

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