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Everything posted by DMC

  1. Due to my intake, it's financially prudent to usually drink the cheapest handle at the store. Here in Pittsburgh it's Bankers Club.
  2. That's alright, just talk to me, Goose! I'm jelly about the Jameson.
  3. I don't drink much vodka either, I was expressing my agreement in drinking whiskey - right now in fact. It was a Top Gun reference, Goose!
  4. Yeah this is what I did too back when I drank beer.
  5. Yes, you're right in that, sorry if my wording is confusing. I meant I expect them to roll out the HHS pick along with Murthy as SG and the rest of the covid team. On Lujan Grisham, I too am skeptical of the recent reporting - which is why I tried to couch it with dubious language. However, generally, I do think something went on there (whether it was turning down the Interior post or something else) because if not I'd think she'd already had been offered the job and clearly she wants to accept. Regardless, and somewhat amusingly (in a shake your head sort of way), the Biden team is already getting backlash for their apparent treatment of Lujan Grisham solely based on such rumors/leaks. On CIA I agree Biden probably wants to steer clear of the Dubya/torture years, just like Obama did, hence why I don't expect Morell to get the job after Wyden and others expressed publicly signaled their concerns. However, in that vein, David Cohen still works - it was widely thought Obama chose him as Deputy Director at CIA for the exact same reason, to avoid picking someone with ties to torture/EITs. I also see CIA as more of an administrative role while DNI is more of an advisory role which would have fit King better, but that's more just my own bureaucratic biases. Obviously any agency head can delegate a more expansive administrative role to her deputy. On Patrick as AG, I agree that those concerned with policing/civil rights should be very happy with him. The latter is his DOJ experience after all. What I was referring to was his rather extensive "big money" ties which - I'm sure you've heard - is already becoming an issue with Biden's choices. Those would be considerably amplified (and likely in their perspective provoked) if someone with Patrick's background was chosen for such a high profile position. See here: I agree that losing Levin's seat is a concern I'd much prefer to avoid as well. Unlike Haaland's, his seat is poachable. Unless of course the Levins can drum up someone else from their family. On Duckworth I actually think she can "do more good," in the broad and unquantifiable sense, by staying Senator rather than going back to the VA. No idea who would replace her either, just assuming it'd be a more difficult hold than if she ran for reelection. On Inslee I agree he could do more good as EPA chief, just a gut feeling that's not gonna get him out of the governor's seat. I wouldn't really judge him either way, he's done a good job dealing with covid for Washington, which obviously is important too and the job isn't done yet.
  6. Right, I'm assuming HHS will be rolled out with Murthy and the rest of the covid team (much of which has already been announced). I think it's possible, however, that Raimondo and Lujan Grisham were Biden's top two choices and now they're doing a bit of scrambling there considering the former has pulled out and apparently they might have soured on the latter. Regardless, I'd expect AG and Defense to at least be leaked by next weekend as I'm sure the team wants those key positions to have some separation from the holidays. As for King I suppose it's possible. I suspect Biden wants more of a careerist/operative at CIA (even more so than DNI), but with Donilon out and the difficulties with Morell, maybe? Still sounds like David Cohen would be the fallback. I don't think getting Rice into that Senate seat is part of Biden's calculus though. In terms of the rest of the Cabinet I still, obviously, prefer those I mentioned in the OP. Patrick would help with the diversity aspect, but appointing him as AG is likely to rankle many progressives. For Labor, I still really do think Julie Su is a very attractive third way that circumvents the intra-union battle between Marty Walsh and Andy Levin. I also think she'd simply be better at the job than either. Duckworth would of course be great at VA, but big picture I don't think such a low-level post is worth risking a newcomer in that seat come 2022. Plus, frankly, Senator of Illinois is considerably more prestigious and powerful than VA Secretary, so I'm skeptical she'd even accept. On Inslee, he would have been ideal for Kerry's position. Who knows if he was offered that or not, but I don't see him leaving the governorship for EPA. On Cabinet-level status, this is largely trivial, but it looks like the amount of Cabinet-level positions under Biden may rival the actual Cabinet. The USTR has consistently been a Cabinet-level position since at least Carter IIRC, and I don't think that's changing. So, right now under Trump, you got CoS, USTR, DNI, CIA, EPA, SBA, and OMB. Biden has already announced he's going to elevate UN Ambassador (it's been back and forth since Bush I - mostly in terms of Republicans demoting it in status and Dems re-elevating), Kerry's post, and CEA chair (also demoted under GOP presidents while cabinet-level under Clinton and Obama). Then, who knows maybe some other positions - perhaps Surgeon General or Covid Czar to highlight its importance. Carter elevated NSA to Cabinet-level status for Brzezinski. Pretty sure that's the only time that happened, but maybe Biden does that too. Hell, I've never understood why the chair of the CEA is cabinet-level but not the chair of the NEC considering the latter generally is more influential with/has more access to the president. That's all probably not gonna happen, but it's part of my effort to make the Cabinet-level positions as large as the actual Cabinet. That's right, this is how I spend my free time.
  7. Yeah you gotta figure they'll be at least leaked if not announced within the next week. There does seem to be a holdup with both of them. I think the seeming holdup with announcing picks generally may be the difficulty in finding a right balance of diversity while simultaneously dealing with candidates/preferred nominees turning the position(s) down. The latter is a blackbox, but it's not hard to imagine how complicated things can get really quickly when you're trying to represent various constituencies. As for Patrick, he does seem to be getting mentioned more for AG. Dunno if I'd call him the favorite. Hopefully HHS gets announced/leaked soon. Raimondo took herself out of the running due to progressive backlash. Also seen reports Lujan Grisham has fallen out of favor due to turning down Interior and "trying to orchestrate" her appointment to HHS. That'd be unfortunate. Who knows, growing tired of trying to read the tea leaves.
  8. Yeah, there was a quote from some article on Biden's picks - specifically his national security team but it could go for virtually all of them thus far - that went something like "if you woke any of them up in the middle of the night, they'd be prepared to ably do their job in any position by that morning." That's clearly what Biden's going for, and it's desperately needed to repair what the Trump administration did to the bureaucracy. Heh, I'm not really concerned about that. What should be interesting is if, or how many of, Trump's US Attorneys refuse to resign. They may be looking to do this for revenge after Preet Bharara refused to resign when Sessions demanded the resignations of all Obama appointees.
  9. Biden announced his top covid team today: I suspect these picks will be paired with the HHS nominee in an official announcement soon. Zients' corporate background will piss off progressives, but as an interagency coordinator he's ideal for the role - as the piece mentioned he is largely credited with fixing the the huge issues with the rollout of the ACA's enrollment portal. In that respect, Jeff Hauser of the Revolving Door Project had a more nuanced perspective on the choice:
  10. True. No one knew how shitty he'd turn out to be on the field either.
  11. Agreed. I also think they gravely miscalculated. (And thought so at the time too - I was ecstatic the Yanks got Torres instead of Schwarber. If the comments sections on RiverAveBlues still exist, there's proof out there.) Anyway, that's still a pretty good lefty power bat out there for dirt cheap. Wish the Yanks had room for him, could help balance the lineup.
  12. So looks basically confirmed the Cubs are non-tendering Kyle Schwarber. Remember that time they refused to trade him for Aroldis Chapman and traded Gleyber Torres instead?
  13. Hmm...Lujan Grisham turned down Interior post, says transition source: As the OP states, I prefer Lujan Grisham at HHS and Haaland at Interior, so I guess I shouldn't be discouraged by this. Just hope (if it's true) that her turning down Interior doesn't take her out of the running for HHS.
  14. I don't. It's incumbent upon Biden to depoliticize the FBI, and not abiding by the standard 10-year term of the director would be a horrible move. I also could never see that happening considering Biden's institutionalist bend.
  15. Do you mean AG? Dunno why they'd be asking about Defense.
  16. I really don't think Donilon took himself out of the running because he thought CIA was beneath him or not good for his career trajectory. As you mention, CIA is still a pretty prestigious job - if it was good enough for Panetta it should be good enough for Donilon. I think it has much more to do with him not wanting to stop being chairman of the world's largest asset manager (BlackRock). He's also 65, it's entirely possible he's not interested in the demands of a high government post anymore. OTOH, I do agree that the wording of the article - he's not ready to back into government "right now" - perhaps suggests maybe he would be interested at a later date and/or for a higher-level post (presumably Defense or State). Agreed McRaven would make a great CIA Director. I have seen him mentioned for Defense, but the fact he stepped down as chancellor of UT two years ago for health/family issues may mean he's not interested either. As for Rhodes, meh. Insofar as his speechwriting capabilities, that's kinda lost on/overkill with Biden anyway. This is hyperbole and just downright being mean, but that's kinda like hiring Picasso to paint your house.
  17. This is a couple days old but I'll put it here since you were nice enough to bump the thread @Gaston de Foix. Tom Donilon has taken himself out of the running for CIA director. If find this interesting for two reasons. First, because before that report he looked to be on his way to being announced, and that would have essentially echoed my picks of Haines and him for the two intelligence posts, just flipped. Second, the next guy on the list, at least according to the consensus of rumors/chatter, is Michael Morell. Liberal Dem Senators, specifically Ron Wyden, have already essentially ruled Morell out due to previous comments on EITs. Which would mean either Biden would be relying on support from GOP members, or he'll have to find someone else. Also, it is interesting that SecDef has not been announced yet, and it seems the assumption it was Flournoy is now being widely questioned. Retired Army General Lloyd Austin is getting a lot of attention recently. This may well be a decision between the first female and the first African-American.
  18. Sounds awesome up until the part about the plastic tree. Since I can remember my parents have always had two trees - one real, one plastic. One of the main perks of moving to Pittsburgh was my brother and I had a built-in excuse not to visit for Thanksgiving weekend when my mom would invariably ask us to get the plastic tree out of the attic, put it together, and help decorate it.
  19. I definitely vote we do not turn the thread into such a discussion. I suspect we can all agree from about the end of Terra Nullius to the end of the season, Charles' behavior is depicted as abusive. Hopefully we can leave it at that.
  20. Eh, this sounds like Morgan would conclude the series by just remaking the third act of The Queen.
  21. Yeah I certainly didn't either, and it does not appear to be at all. They just stopped at 1990. Harry and Markle got married in..2018. Granted, the last two seasons covered 26 years, but I highly doubt the final two were ever imagined to cover 28 - especially considering Morgan went back and forth on even having a sixth season. I agree that it makes sense the 5th will almost certainly climax with Diana's death. Which does raise the question what they're gonna do in the sixth? There's still Margaret and the Queen Mom's deaths - which happened like a month apart - and of course Charles' marriage to Camilla. Really, I never anticipated them making William and Harry actual characters in the series - at most kind of like what Charles and Anne were in the second season. Plus at a certain point you got the other three kids' kids (or at least Anne's and Andrew's) and you're really Martin-ing the damn thing out into a sprawl. Hm..
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