Josh Marshall

Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.

Articles by Josh

PC-Rage-Mac-Envy update.

So, my own predictions notwithstanding, this weekend, I took the plunge. I went out and bought my first Mac.

I am, it turns out, afflicted with a severe characterological disorder which prevents me from ever reading directions for any new product I purchase but rather forces me to stumble around by trial and error until I figure out how the new thing works. No pity please, I've had the condition since childhood. But that did create a few grumbly moments as I tried to figure out how to do some elementary task. At first at least, not having the right mouse key was something like learning to ride a bike.

Within about a day though I felt like I'd gotten my sea legs. And so far I have to say that I'm really pleased with the decision.

Yesterday, we linked to this picture from the Larimer County (CO) Republican party website, which shows Rep. Maryilyn Musgrave introducing two Marines at a GOP fundraiser, an apparent violation of standing military regs. The photos in question have now been scrubbed from the Larimer County GOP website.


We know Mitch Wade as coconspirator #2, the guy who bought all the houses and antiques and boats for the now-imprisoned Duke Cunningham in exchange for Duke's help bagging defense and intelligence procurement projects.

But Wade had his finger in some other pies too.

It turns out that Wade was also the registered agent for something called the "Iranian Democratization Foundation." The date of registration was in April 2004 and it's now "dissolved."

What's it all about? Your guess is as good as ours. But we're looking into it.

Tampa Tribune: "Gov. Jeb Bush's office is refusing to release documents or answer questions about a $400,000 tax credit awarded to MZM Inc., whose former chief executive pleaded guilty last week to bribery and illegal campaign contributions."

This week in TPMCafe Book Club we're featuring Gershom Gorenberg's The Accidental Empire: Israel and the Birth of the Settlements, 1967-1977 and the current state affairs in Israel-Palestine. Gorenberg just got the conversation started with a post about how and why he wrote the book. Stop by and check it out.

The Foggo of war. (Hint|: the Duke/Wilkes link into the CIA). That and other news of the day in today's Daily Muck.

Yet another follow-up on Rep. Marilyn Musgrave's (R-CO) Republican party event out in Colorado over the weekend.

Here's a photograph from the Larimer County GOP website in which Rep. Musgrave appears to be introducing two Marines at the County GOP political event. (That's how it's described in this article in the local paper.)

We still need to know more about just what happened here (and what seems to be happening at a lot of GOP events around the country). But just what appears within the four corners of this photograph seems in direct contravention of military regs.

And as we noted before, this is something people across party lines should be concerned about because it's bad for the country and bad for the armed forces.

I've long suspected a wide-ranging Republican party conspiracy to create content ready-made for Talking Points Memo. And as Republican conspiracies go, it's one I can't say I have too big a problem with. But I think I've found another example of the cabal at work.

To paraphrase the late Richard M. Nixon, we don't have Duke Cunningham to kick around any more. But perhaps the conspirators are cueing up a replacement.

Francine Busby is the main Democrat running to replace the seat left vacant by Duke's resignation. It's CA-50, for those of you keeping score. It's an open primary on April 11th. The top Dem and GOPer go to a run-off, unless one candidate gets over 50%, a distinctly unlikely outcome.

Anyway, one of the main Republicans is former GOP Congressman Brian Bilbray.

Since leaving Congress, Brian Bilbray has worked as a lobbyist for, among other clients, a controversial Indian tribe with a casino. Actually, let me amend that slightly. More recently, he's been spending his time fighting with the state of California over whether he has to identify his profession as that of "lobbyist" on election materials. Bilbray prefers to style himself "consultant".

In any case, given the recent unpleasantness in the 50th district, Busby is pretty keen to make the election about ethics and political corruption. (It's a fairly Republican district.) And if Brian Bilbray makes it into the run-off against her, that may not be that hard.

You see, Bilbray was a pretty big pal of our friend Jack Abramoff. Back in the mid-1990s he even went on one of Jack's all-expense-paid junkets to the Marianas islands to watch first hand the alchemic magic of laborers from across the Far East working in sweatshops producing "Made in the USA" label clothing.

A lot of Republicans went to the Marianas back in the glory days; and even a few Dems. But Bilbray became one of the most outspoken proponents of the campaign to keep US labor laws off the island. Somehow I suspect there's more beneath the surface on this one.