TRILLION JILLION KAZILLION
There is a bumper sticker out there that says, “Don’t tell President Obama what comes after a trillion.” And there are wags who suggest Mr. Obama’s face should be on a trillion-dollar bill, if and when we ever have one. But what’s a trillion, let alone the $9.7 trillion Mr. Obama’s budgets would add to the national debt over the next decade. Rep. Tom Price, Georgia Republican, and his very nimble Republican Study Committee have assembled their own comparisons to help voters understand “the value of one trillion.” A few examples:
“With one trillion dollars, you could buy each person in the world an iPod. One trillion dollars could give every kid in the world $455. While some may say she’s priceless, according to her insured value, one trillion dollars could pay for roughly 1,400 Mona Lisas. A Maserati GranTurismo is worth about $117,500. With one trillion dollars, you could buy 8,510,638 of these speedsters, roughly one for every person in the state of New Jersey.”
“With the median sales price for a new home in America at a little more than $200,000, we could build, with one trillion dollars, a brand new abode for 5 million American families. The cost of building the U.S. Capitol Visitors Center was $621,000,000. With one trillion dollars, you could build 1,610 of these underground wonders.”
THE MASSA MEDIA
There was caterwaul and questionable moments, but the rabid press actually had some watchdog impact while chronicling the rapid denouement of former congressman Eric Massa, the New York Democrat who resigned from office this week. In a House resolution introduced Thursday, Rep. John A. Boehner cited three newspaper accounts about Mr. Massa’s sexually charged high jinks to help justify his call to investigate what House Speaker Nancy Pelosi knew - and when she knew it.
“Numerous confusing and conflicting media reports that House Democratic leaders knew about, and may have failed to handle appropriately, allegations that Rep. Massa was sexually harassing his own employees have raised serious and legitimate questions about what Speaker Pelosi, as well as other Democratic leaders and their respective staffs, were told, and what those individuals did with the information in their possession,” the resolution states. “The aforementioned media accounts have held the House up to public ridicule.”
But the Massa-centric media completely irked Rep. Patrick J. Kennedy, who spotted just two lone reporters in the press gallery to witness his criticism of the war in Afghanistan.
‘We’re hearing about Eric Massa 24/7,” the Rhode Island Democrat hollered. “The press of the United States is not covering the most significant issue of national importance, and that is the laying down of life in the service of our country. It’s despicable.”
His rant got generous, often admiring attention in the mainstream media. But the Media Research Center’s analyst Brent Baker smells bias.
“When conservatives take to the House floor to criticize the news media’s liberal distortions, that’s not newsworthy to NBC,” he said, noting that the network chose “to showcase an unhinged liberal Democrat.”
THE BIG DIFFERENCE
“I served my time. They didn’t … . I created jobs and a payroll. That’s more than these New York politicians have done.”
So says libertarian Kristin Davis - the “Manhattan Madam” who served time in prison for prostitution then declared her candidacy for governor of New York - on how she differs from her one-time client Eliot Spitzer, and other officials. Ms. Davis, incidentally, uttered this aside to “America’s Morning News” hosts and friends-of-Beltway John McCaslin and Amy Holmes.
TWO ALEXANDERSView Entire Story
A graduate of Syracuse University, Jennifer Harper writes the daily Inside the Beltway column and provides additional coverage of breaking national news, plus long-term trends in politics, media issues, public opinion, popular culture, Hollywood foibles and “eureka” moments in health and science.
She has been a frequent broadcast commentator on CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, C-SPAN, Voice of America, Citadel Broadcasting, ...
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