Good “shit, what the fuck happened to the” morning, readers. Newly anointed Daily Baller Mike Riggs is back with me this no longer morning for another lively hour or so of uncen$ored extemporaneous Gchat about the morning’s most important events. In this edition: Georgetown’s trippy trinity is down to a duo, David Brooks explores the liberal media’s stubborn neglect to acknowledge the profundity and intellectual rigor of the Tea Party movement and concludes the coastal elites once again simply possess too much self-esteem, some teabaggers kick in a lame socialist’s neck as cameras roll at a Rand Paul rally and the liberals have so much self-esteem they posted it on the internet and are probably conspiring with the ACLU to rescind their constitutional right to assault stupid dykey looking Moveon protesters as we speak, whiny elitists.
MOE: Assuming you have finished that cigarette…
RIGG$: I have!
MOE: I have practically quit smoking since I moved here, because everything sucks and I have no friends and there is so little during the course of the workday that gets me sufficiently riled up that I feel like I need to go have a smoke to deal with it.
RIGG$: Goddamn, Moe
MOE: Yeah well I went to that fucking National Journal thing last night.
Anyway so those Georgetown kids!
MOE: I noted that the two who ended up getting charged were actually a Georgetown School of Foreign Service student and his best friend who goes to University of Richmond, and that they grew up a mile apart from one another in Andover, Massachusetts which obviously means that they have been selling drugs to boarding school douchebags since they were six, which explains their sophistication.
RIGG$: You have been investigating!
MOE: The Georgetown kid’s roommate who is from Long Island got off, obviously.
RIGG$: Because there is bias towards Long Islanders, or because he was the geeky roommate who had nothing to do with it all?
MOE: Sadly, this will no doubt prohibit young Chris Smith from ever joining the State Department. And here is a question: did the Long Island roommate kid turn them in? Probably not, but who did?
RIGG$: Yeah, I don’t think you can oversee an agency that cooperates tangentially with drug interdiction across the globe if yourself are huge into partying on DMT.
Good question, re snitching. Could have been the roommate. Or the rumors could have worked their way around the dorm, as once happened with that horrible fight club I started my freshman year in college.
MOE: Well it also cooperates tangentially with drug trafficking, but that’s another story. Here’s a dumb question though: does it strike you at all that a conspiracy to “manufacture” involve some sort of…like…manufacturing equipment slightly more advanced than a jar, some dry ice and a turkey baster?
RIGG$: It sounds like it should, but it doesn’t. The Controlled Substances Act has big words like “manufacturing” to give the DOJ and other law enforcers as much leeway as possible.
Like, their use of that word is so broad that growing weed is considering manufacturing.
MOE: Like, goddamn it if this is what passes for “manufacturing” in this country, we might as well just start selling off states to whatever Chinese sovereign wealth funds are buying?
RIGG$: Hell, the THC-riddled dump I just took probably counts as manufacturing.
And you’re right—if these kids are manufacturers, then the American economy probably has millions more manufacturing jobs than we realize!
MOE: Hahaha that is so gross
RIGG$: I know, I am a really gross person. But my shits are good for the economy. I just need to find a way to leech out the stuff people want to inhale, which trust me is not all of it.
But honestly, I could go on for days about how stupid the language in the CSA is.
“Manufacturing with intent to sell” and all that blah
It’s terrible. It allows the DOJ to treat home growers like narcoterrorists.
MOE: Whoa ok I am reading this story though. So it started with a campus police officer who caught a kid smoking what he thought was weed outside the freshman hall. The kid is like, “nah man it’s K2″—which is apparently legal in DC? and what the fuck is K2—and the officer asked where he’d gotten it and he’s all “Room 926.” Which, just…christ.
RIGG$: NOT COOL, BRO
You don’t just say the room number. The kid should’ve said that he found it at a party!
MOE: God the Georgetown University newspaper is sooooo bad
RIGG$: Which one? There are two. And they play pranks on each other in between bouts of reporting things.
Neither the HOYAlert system — the university’s emergency notification system — nor the Campus Alert System — a series of steam whistles that signal to the university community to take shelter when activated — were utilized by the university on Saturday. Olson said that he and other officials were not concerned about the threat to wider on- and off-campus areas.
That paragraph is sort of its own near-death experience.
RIGG$: That’s probably because of the threat of exploding meth labs, right?
I mean, you wouldn’t evacuate a campus because some bros were selling drugs.
RIGG$: But even then, you wouldn’t need to evacuate the entire campus because of one meth lab, and certainly not because of DMT.
MOE: So like in other news, an AU accounting professor was murdered in her home, Treasury got called out by Neil Barofsky finally for cooking the books on the AIG bailout and then by Sheila Bair for ignoring (and continuing to ignore) the problem of all the banks repaying their TARP money entirely by collecting illegal fees foreclosing on houses they don’t own (but it’s okay bc no one knows who actually does.)
RIGG$: Um, Sheila Bair ripped mad asshole yesterday!
MOE: It’s just a pointless detail some dumbstruck reporter kid obviously wrote down verbatim from a press conference and stuck into the story because obviously, there is nothing actually interesting to report here…
She is good at that yes.
RIGG$: What’s so great about that is just last week, HUD Sec. Shaun Donovan told reporters at the White House that the foreclosuregate problems “are not systemic.”
Bair seems to think that they are, though. And I bet she has no concerns about panicking investors, which Obama’s financial team is so scared of doing that they have resorted to saying the same things over and over and over again.
MOE: To say they are not systemic, you would kind of have to not know what “system” means.
RIGG$: OR! You could change the definition of that word to make it something that it is not currently.
RIGG$: Either way, this is what the White House is doing. Because to do anything else—to say that this is so much more horrible than we realized, nobody owns the mortgage, banks can’t evict because they don’t have proof—would make a mockery of Washington’s efforts to date of “dealing with” the mortgage crisis.
MOE: Did you pay attention at all to the SIG TARP report? It was pretty cool actually, how the Treasury “massaged” the numbers on the AIG bailout.
MOE: They really haven’t made many efforts to date, because it is not terribly sexy.
You think they’ve done nothing, or haven’t done the right thing?
(And that question could probably work for every piece of legislation from the last 18 months, IMO)
MOE: I’ve read Tim Geithner‘s schedule and it’s long on very high level meetings with Wall Street CEOs, foreign central bank chiefs and the high-end (i.e. “totally ignorant, Washington-based) press.
RIGG$: [Off record: Interviewee cancelled!]
MOE: Oh, cool ha. Anyway, SIG TARP says they’ve completed a little more than 200,000 mods and we’ve got a little over 7 million houses that have either been foreclosed upon or are in foreclosure. IT is not so much that the program was poorly designed (although it was) but that the whole mortgage servicing industry is not cut out for this kind of thing, because let’s just face it in fact the whole fucking system is poorly designed (this is what’s known as “systemic”) and if it weren’t we would know who owns these mortgages, but we don’t, all we know is that we guarantee most of them.
RIGG$: This Geithner stuff is old news, though, right?
MOE: That he’s a tool? Yes.
RIGG$: Ha. Yes.
I know a lot of people think the biggest problem is people losing their homes. I think the biggest problem is that the system for documenting ownership (private property rights!!11!) has been undermined.
If you’re going to say #1 is a bigger problem than #2, give me both barrels.
MOE: Well no the biggest problem is actually that it’s sort of like there’s this termite-type ‘actor’ in the American economy known as the servicers, who benefit only to the detriment of every other kind of “good faith” actor in the economy and the ultimate degradation of society.
MOE: But for the past two to three years, those termites have been the single unstoppable force driving the housing market.
Everything else is at a kind of delusional standstill.
RIGG$: But servicers now stand to get fucked, do they not?
MOE: I would agree with you that the system for documenting ownership being undermined is a pretty significant detail. But it’s not actually about documenting ownership. It’s about how money gets “earned” anymore in this country, and how that generally relies on systemic fraud.
Do they stand to get fucked? Not nearly on par with the people they’ve fucked.
On both sides of the “ownership” charade.
RIGG$: What is an appropriate punishment for the termites?
MOE: Anyway it’s a pretty crappy situation and the Obama Administration deserves to be fucking punished for ignoring it, because Tim Geithner has literally spent the last year on this “TARP: The Feelgood Story” roadshow taking credit for the completely hypothetical achievements of a program he did not even make up.
Nothing that is remotely politically feasible.
Large-scale nationalization I’d say.
RIGG$: Oh, speaking of Geithner farting sunshine! He spoke in California last weekend about bailouts for states. And do you know what the crazy bastard said? He said that states would have to start making better budget decisions! He really does like the banks more than he likes America.
MOE: Oh GOD don’t get me started on states.
RIGG$: I mean, I mostly agree that states could do better things with their moneys. But to say that states need to be responsible but Wall Street can’t wipe its own ass…WELL
MOE: I kind of wonder if anyone ever asked Larry Summers how he felt about the “moral hazard” involved in his decision to stick Harvard with those interest rate swaps which lost over a billion dollars of the university’s endowment and re-appropriated it right into the coffers of Goldman, JP Morgan etc. etc.
Wall Street has made so much money off those goddamn states and municipalities. Which, for the most part, are funded by ludicrously regressive tax policies.
RIGG$: I think Summers would need to possess a conscience for that question to be at all effective. Even then, he’d say what everybody involved in these deals says—has to say, in fact—which is that I often take my own advice.
Isn’t that how financial types normally sell moral hazards anyway? Always pretending like they have a dog in the hunt even when they don’t?
And yeah, state public pensions are being run and advised by crooks.
MOE: They never do, the end. Now, ugh, kill me. Hey wait how about an uplifting change of subject like David Brooks’ column about the Democrats and their overinflated self-esteem?
RIGG$: OH YAY!
MOE: Because that is the problem, with Democrats; Republicans, they are the ones with all the insecurities. Especially intellectual insecurities, poor things…
RIGG$: Oh, low blow, Moe!
He’s wrong, though. Dems have admitted mistakes. I think Harry Reid has admitted that it’s been rough going.
But what more can they safely say in an election season?
I mean, Brooks is in the clouds if he thinks now is a good time for any elected politician to say, “I Fucked Up.”
MOE: Oh also I got some email from my sister re that Harry Reid story on the front page of the Post today using the term “sugar daddy” excessively which she found offensive somehow…because it made him sound gay or something? Hey and I had forgotten he is Mormon—like what?!
RIGG$: “Federal sugar daddy”
That is a fantastic fucking term. I mean, a sugar daddy as I understand it is a rich, single, old man who pays someone to pretend to love him.
RIGG$: I think Harry Reid fits that description. There are cum rags under my bed that are more appealing on TV than reid.
MOE: Anyway Brooks does make one probably valid point when he writes that Democrats have “paid no attention” to Republicans like Rob Portman, or Dan Coats or John Boozman because they do not have any history with witchcraft and are therefore not as easy for us to paint as “feeble-minded wackos.” But here I think he makes the mistake of forgetting that not everyone can make millions peddling right-leaning “consensus” platitudes all day and that some of us have to eat and die by the rules of that right leaning consensus chiefly the one about the market always being right (although, only if it is good for banks) and Christine O’Donnell simply happens to be a darling of markets and banks.
Which is to say, I would probably quibble with him about Portman or Boozman or whoever, if I knew who they were.
Sent at 11:59 AM on Tuesday
RIGG$: I think you’re overestimating O’Donnell’s success
Angle’s too, for that matter
MOE: And I guess I should interpret this to mean you would rather your jizz land on Sharon Angle?
RIGG$: I think we pay them attention because they don’t understand the rules.
And oh god no
MOE: We pay them attention because PEOPLE CLICK.
RIGG$: I am saving myself for one woman and one woman alone: Valerie Jarrett.
Yes, people click.
But why do they click?
Do you think it’s because most political journalists suck at conveying the gravity and exoticism of Washington?
MOE: Because it’s cheaper than smoking another cigarette in most places? Because their lives are worthless and they know it? Because they are powerless to change anything and the one time they were conned into believing otherwise all they got was a debilitating case of blueballs, and Christine O’Donnell is to wretched to even fantasize about hatefucking?
RIGG$: You are so projecting right now!
MOE: She’s so wretched that even listening to her talk at length about masturbation is a massive bonerkiller?
MOE: Oh and yes well it goes without saying journalism is dead, like democracy and property rights, whatever.
RIGG$: Oh stop! You’re giving me heartburn. I didn’t say it was dead. But I do think that fringe candidates are irresistible to washington reporters, most of whom have jobs that subject them to extended face-sitting sessions
Sessions that they then have to pretend to enjoy, so that one day they can sit on someone else’s face.
But fringe candidates have no power.
And never will, so our reporters see a chance to really fuck somebody with saturated coverage, because no one’s going to get them fired for screwing with a witch.
MOE: Who are those other guys, anyway. (And are they as intellectually formidable as Eric Kantor???)
RIGG$: They’re savvy Republican operators who are going to win, is my guess.
MOE: Ha and not even the Daily Caller cares