Tuli Can't Stop Talking

These are just my thoughts on contemporary issues and an attempt to open up a dialogue.

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Location: New York City

A citizen who cares deeply about the United States Constitution and the Rule of Law.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

Hopefully in 2009 there really will be some CHANGE!

And it should start on January 20, 2009!

President-Elect Obama at the Al E. Smith Extravaganza

I actually went to this Extravaganza many years ago and I have wonderful remembrances of how politics in NY actually works (and how crazy some of our representatives can be). So, I should have posted this some time ago and I failed to do it. So because I love this I have gone back in the archives and I am posting it as it is a classic. So, who said “The One” didn’t have a good sense of humor and great delivery?

This was a wonderful and hysterical speech and he nailed it. It was also so wonderful to see one of our elected officials being articulate and spot on. I guess you could say it was actually a tribute to Al E. Smith. Who could of thunk that?

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

1969 and The Big Three

So, it was 1969 and we still hadn’t had the worst of the Oil Crisis, but you knew it was coming. Peak Oil in the U.S. had already been predicted in that we would be going from being a country that exported Oil to one that would become an importer of Oil in the early 70’s.

Now at the time my friend, and next door neighbor, was driving an old Chevy Impala and I was driving a Chevy Nova. Her car had eight cylinders and mine had six. Not to mention the fact that age also made them consume a lot of gas. Mind you, gas was, if I recall, actually around 19 cents a gallon at our local Merit Station. Now, this was when you could pull into the station and give the guy a buck for the gas and you also got full service. Ah, yes, back in the day. Anyway, we were both struggling financially especially her as her husband had been killed in Nam and she was raising their child on her own. That and we both spent a great deal of time driving back and forth to Boston in order to have some sort of social life, but of course that is a story for another day.

She, being prescient, decided she needed to get a new car as her Impala was seriously hitting the skids so she bought a Toyota Corona. It was stupendous. It had four cylinders, was efficient what with 30 mpg, very cute and exceedingly luxuriously comfortable and terrific to drive not to mention so much easier to park. So, I was also sold and likewise got a Corona which I loved (this is like mine in color except mine was a four door) and which served me for quite some time before the engine started to fall apart, mostly due to the Chrysler dealer (the only dealer of Japanese cars at the time) who was incapable of servicing the car and totally unfamiliar with Japanese sub-compacts and four cylinder engines. I next bought a Datsun 510, from a new and different dealer, which was likewise very economical and not as luxurious as the Corona but wonderful to handle and like I said cheap on gas. This economical car came in very handy when the big Oil Crunch and Recession hit in the Seventies.

Now my question is that if two under-educated girls in 1969 could see the future, how come the Executives at the Big Three couldn’t? What is with the SUV and Trucks and betting most of the trifecta on gas guzzlers? And how come GM has so many different brands, not models, but brands? Not to mention the crazy quilt structure of brands, distributors, and financiers? Too Big to Fail, indeed, except that they have. Michelle Singletary also has a few words to say about executive compensation and its connection to corporate competence and the lack thereof.

So, what model do the Big Three have to compete with Toyota’s Camry or Corolla? And why don’t they have models to compete with the most popular cars in the world?

What were they thinking back in 1969?

Update: So now we are going to bailout the Big Three (actually Big Two) and Canada is doing it also. This leads me to ask “Who killed the GM EV1 electric car and why?” Enquiring minds want to know!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Uh, Oh!

Economic strife in U.S. could lead to Military Intervention! This is not even good that they see this as a possibility!

Freddie Hubbard


1938 - 2008

Friday, December 26, 2008

Eartha Kitt


1927 – 2008

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Harold Pinter


1930 – 2008

Have A Wonderful Holiday!

Al Meyerhoff


1947 – 2008

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Bush Pardons Madoff

This is according to Maron and Seder

Soon to come to 24/7 CNN, etc., or not!

This Could Get Even Uglier!

Head of Fund Invested in Madoff Is Found Dead

If Bernie hadn’t confessed the SEC would have never uncovered this fraud. Why, because it, and they, are loath to look at their friends.

As the saying goes, “You never know who is swimming naked until the tide goes out.”

And the tide is going out folks with more naked swimmers to be exposed.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Meet the Bloggers with Rev. Billy

H/t C&L.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Oligarchs Sitting at the Same Table!

So, I think that I should say something about the Madoff Ponzi Scheme. But what is to say? The schemer and those who abetted and enabled him and his ilk (yet to be exposed) all sat at the same table, not to mention the same club, and were happy to eat from the same “trough.”

The folks who are covering this story don’t seem to get that all these folks are connected and if not why the scheme isn’t as far reaching as it might be? And yet the scheme is really quite far reaching in that trust is afforded the Oligarchs and the Masters of the Universe (see TARP Big Swindle vs. UAW and Big Three) that is not extended to the hoi polloi.

So, we had the bleeding from the Market losing Trillions of value, then we had the Mutual Funds and Hedge Funds freezing up and now we have the fact that Bernie Madoff made off with an awful lot of their money and by one of their own. And they are shocked and awed that one of their own breached their trust and took them down.

Unfortunately, it isn’t just the Oligarchs, and their Wanabees, that are the only victims of this particular swindle. Many good causes are being effected by this particular swindle. The JEHT Foundation is closing its doors. Some of its beneficiaries, such as the Innocence Project, The Center for Constitutional Rights and Human Rights Watch along with many in the Arts World, are going to be reduced and maybe even endangered.

There is a part of me that thinks, just like I did in 2006 about the Credit Default Swaps, this is just one of the first of the swindles that will be exposed during this Economic Downturn.

It is just another example, and exhibit A, on why there shouldn’t be so much concentration of wealth and power with a very small part of the population and economy in a democracy.

The Founding Fathers warned us against this and yet once again we have failed to heed history.

Prof. Krugman ties it all together this morning in his column and the World gone Madoff.

Read it.

Update: Scott Berman is on the case and I have total confidence in Scott’s abilities to deal with this situation. Not only is he a great litigator and lawyer but a wonderful person. I am not suggesting that these aren’t complicated cases they are. But, I feel better knowing that Scott is working on the case.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Mark Felt


1913 – 2008

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Judge John E. Sprizzo


1934 – 2008

He loved the ponies.

Sunday, December 14, 2008


Now as you all know I am a devotee of the Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping.” So today’s NYT’s Magazine has a piece on consumerism and the “Economic Down Turn.” And shockingly they don’t mention the Reverend and his movement once.

The Reckoning

The NYT’s has a series on what I call the Big Swindle, otherwise know as the “Bailout of the Economic Meltdown.” I know, whocouldaseen that coming (except Roubini, Dean Baker, Krugman, Schiff, Taleb, etc.)

This morning Frank Rich ties together all of the threads that are coming unraveled.

Read the whole piece you won’t be sorry.

Bittman on the Kitchen

According to him size doesn’t matter. And he is right. Though I am lucky in that I have an eat-in-kitchen in Manhattan it is very small compared to those I have had in the suburbs of Massachusetts. There is limited storage and counter space. The one luxury I do have is a double-wide refrigerator which I love. Most folks I know have big-ass televisions. I have a big-ass fridge and a relatively small TV. Priorities you know!

I do love to cook and have always loved to cook. I am not a great cook, but pretty good. One of the finest cooks and caterers I know cooks on a small and ancient stove (even older and smaller than mine) with a very small oven. She also has a very small and efficient Italian fridge.

Bittman is right: cooks cook, no matter the accoutrements. Granite countertops and a Viking stove (though very attractive) don’t make your lamb stew a better lamb stew!

Say you are a carnivore that is!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Elvin Bishop

I love this song.

Even though I hate Queens! Don’t tell anyone!

The Death Penalty

On the December 12th Meet the Bloggers, hosted by Cenk Uygur, has Activist Mike Farrell on as a guest to discuss the Death Penalty with the bloggers.

You know that I love Cenk and I am devoted to TYT.

Check out Meet the Bloggers each Friday it is another Robert Greenwald Production.

New York Law Journal or the Enquirer?

In the past week we have had the headlines, several in fact, about the Marc Dreier case, the Madoff case and the Manhattan Surrogate-elect Anderson who was indicted as well as the other usual judicial misconduct stories which are forgiven (usually) or not.

Every morning reading the NYLJ is like reading the Enquirer only it has more named sources.

Talk about exposes on a daily basis not to mention the news of all the big firms and their economic problems.

Tough times indeed!

Alex’s Handmaids Tale!

I have been meaning to blog about this since the article came out. I have however had so many conversations about the NYT’s article, Her Body, My Baby, that I actually used up my entire furor over the article. But then I read the piece by Thomas Frank at the WSJ titled Rent-a-Womb is Where Market Logic Leads and I was suitably chastised by his outrage (and not just because of our economic times.) Now the Style Editor at the New York Times, Alex Kuczynski, has given new meaning to “Style” and the whole concept of Class Warfare. She has taken hits even from Clark Hoyt, the Public Editor of said NYT’s.

The magazine article about gestational surrogacy — a woman’s bearing the biological child of someone else — posed a very different issue. The facts were not in dispute. But the article focused almost totally on the wealthy Kuczynski and her feelings without giving a voice to Cathy Hilling, the substitute teacher who bore her son. The article glossed over their class and economic differences, but the accompanying photographs seemed to emphasize them. The cumulative impact struck some readers as elitist.

Some readers were so offended by the pictures that they never even tried to read Kuczynski’s account of her struggle to have a child. One photograph showed her holding her son on the lawn of her Southampton home, columns along a wide veranda with white wicker in the background, a uniformed baby nurse standing at attention. Two pages later, Hilling was shown pregnant, leaning back on her dilapidated-looking porch in Harleysville, Pa., weeds peeking out from beneath it, a dog lying at her side. To many readers, the pictures screamed rich woman exploiting poor woman.

Kuczynski, who said she disagreed with her editors over the photographs before publication, said she felt they were “incendiary” and distracted from the story. Hilling, clearly portrayed in the article as middle class, described the porch as “the ugliest part” of her renovated, 135-year-old home. She said she felt the photo of her was “contrived.” Gerald Marzorati, the editor of the magazine, acknowledged the “upstairs, downstairs” quality of the photos but said they were not set up to be that way.

Jill Abramson, the managing editor for news, said she is “a big, big fan” of Kuczynski and her writing. But she said she thought that because the article did not deal forthrightly enough with the economic disparity between Kuczynski and Hilling, it “got people thinking there was a kind of clueless ness about that.” The photo of Kuczynski, she said, “dripped with to-the-manor-born.”

Kuczynski was stung by the reader criticism and said she has heard from hundreds of women grateful for her story; some described their experiences with gestational surrogacy, and others asked for more information about it.

Hilling said she was a bit frustrated by the pictures and Kuczynski’s story. “It was her opportunity to tell her experience,” she said. “I wish there was a way for me to share more of my part in it.” She said her motivation was not money, which mostly just covered her time lost from work, but the “incredible high” of knowing “you can make someone’s dream come true.”

I think readers would have been more satisfied if editors had given some space to Hilling’s feelings. Surrogacy does, after all, involve two mothers. The magazine seemed oblivious that it was giving one of them the short end of the story.

Now I remember the case in New Jersey about Surrogacy which led to a legal circus and I was in Law School at the time so it was fodder for much legal wrangling at the time. I am afraid that all of the old arguments remain.

It is for the most part from my perspective still all about class and who has a voice that will be listened to and the ink to get it heard.

Alex’s article and the ink spent on it suggests once again “Woman as vessel as in The Handmaid’s Tale is still viable.

Gen. Shinseki: How Ironic!

Say the Bush Administration had actually paid attention to General Shinseki, we wouldn’t have had so many of our soldiers coming home with such debilitating conditions that have overwhelmed the Veterans Administration. How Ironic is that?

I am so pleased, to put it mildly, with this nomination.

Thursday, December 04, 2008



1930 - 2008

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Prop 8 Musical Vid!

Eventually anti-discrimination will win. How long will it take? I don’t know. But, and I am still verklempt, a black man has been elected President in these United States and I never thought I would see that in my lifetime. Though I did hope for my son’s, nephew’s and friends' sake it was in their lifetime

Thanks to John.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Sandy Ruby


1941 – 2008



1961 - 2008