[He has] accepted responsibility for the columns published under his name in his local newspaper, and has apologized for not upholding the standards expected by the president.

— White House press secretary Dana Perino in a written statement expressing President Bush’s disappointment that White House aide Timothy S. Goeglein, originally recruited to work in the White House by former adviser Karl Rove, had plagiarized from the Dartmouth Review for columns he wrote for the News-Sentinel of Fort Wayne, Ind.; March 1; emphasis added.

You’re used to making $17 an hour with benefits, and now you have to take any job for $8 an hour. I’ve literally sat and cried, but my friends with double degrees are doing worse. It’s the economy. It’s really bad.

— Nicole Flennaugh, 36, a widow who has a college degree and who was laid off as a customer service representative at an educational services company, and who, even after applying for dozens of full-time jobs, has been getting by with occasional stints as an office temp; March 1.

The deficit today is at 1.2 percent of GDP, which is lower than the average of the last 40 years. In other words, we have told the American people that by keeping taxes low we can grow the economy, and by working with Congress to set priorities we can be fiscally responsible and we can head toward balance. And that’s exactly where we’re headed.

— President Bush in a statement after meeting with his economic advisers; Oct. 11; emphasis added.

I like to let other people know how well I’m doing and put that information out to the public. I turned out to be a good trader, and I want people to know about it.

— Brian Zacharias, 23, a senior economics major at the University of Virginia, on why he posts at Covestor; a Washington Post story says, “Money used to be a taboo subject. Not anymore, thanks to Web sites such as Facebook and MySpace, which have created a generation willing to talk about anything and everything online. Several new sites are incorporating that impulse into the world of money, blending social networking with personal finance”; March 2.

It hurts. I’m a man who’s trying to make a living for my family and I’m not succeeding.

— independent trucker Robert Griffith of Lebanon, Tenn., on the difficulties of making a living because of high fuel costs; according to BusinessWeek, “As the cost of diesel doubled over the last four years, his take-home pay has plummeted, from $50,000 to $11,000 last year. He’s literally burning money; he spent $64,000 on diesel in the last eight months”; March 1.

It’s everything that gets shipped. That is the one that is much scarier.

— Tom Kloza, publisher and chief oil analyst at the Oil Price Information Service in Wall, N.J., on diesel fuel’s impact on the economy; says BusinessWeek, “While gas prices are unlikely to rise as high as $4 a gallon, diesel may well pass that psychologically important level this spring”; March 1.

Q: When the President yesterday that he hadn’t heard forecasts of $4 gas, was he serious?
MR. JOHNDROE: One, the President realizes that the high price of gasoline is a hardship for many Americans, but the President’s point was that neither his advisors nor Energy Department analysts are at this point forecasting $4 a gallon gasoline.
Q: It’s here. It’s already in California.
MR. JOHNDROE: I think that the national average, as of earlier this week, was $3.15, according to the Energy Department and other surveys. And so, no doubt, the price of gas is high. It causes hardship for many Americans. There is a — it is something the President is concerned about. He talked about that yesterday. It’s important for people to remember there are no short-term solutions to this.

— exchange between reporter and spokesman Gordon Johndroe during a White House press briefing; Feb. 29.

Some major financial institutions have, however, experienced staggering problems because they engaged in the “weakened lending practices” I described in last year’s letter. John Stumpf, CEO of Wells Fargo, aptly dissected the recent behavior of many lenders: “It is interesting that the industry has invented new ways to lose money when the old ways seemed to work just fine.”

— Warren Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, in his annual letter to stockholders; February 2008; emphasis added.

People in the entertainment and sports industries serve as role models to millions of young Americans, and that comes with the responsibility to dispel the notion that drug abuse is glamorous and free of consequences. Teachers, pastors, and parents also have an obligation to help young people develop the character and self-respect to resist drugs. The Federal Government will continue to do its part to keep our young people safe, and I urge all Americans to do the same. Our children deserve nothing less.

— President Bush in his weekly radio address; March 1; emphasis added.

We have seen in the last year disruptions in the national meth and cocaine markets on the supply side — cocaine shortages reported in 38 cities. Increases in price and purity demonstrate that the volatility of those markets has been sustained — or that reductions in the volatility in the prices shown in those reductions has been sustained under effective pressure on supply that hitherto was not possible.

— John Walters, director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, discussing the 2008 national drug control strategy with reporters via White House conference call; March 1.

I really can’t tell you, traveling and campaigning now for many months, how dispirited the Bridge to Nowhere or earmark and pork-barrel spending was to our Republican base. We lost in 2006 not because of Iraq but because spending got out of control.

— presidential candidate John McCain in a conference call with conservative bloggers; March 1; emphasis added.

I thought all along that the Northrop Grumman-EADS proposal was the best.

— Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., on the Air Force’s decision to award a $35 billion contract to Northrop Grumman and the European parent of Airbus to build up to 179 new refueling tanker aircraft; the award would bring 7,000 new jobs to Alabama; Feb. 29.

We are so very excited about having the opportunity to help the Air Force acquire the most modern and capable refueling tanker — a tanker assembled in America — by Americans.

— Rep. Jo Bonner, R-Ala., on the tanker aircraft award; Feb. 29; emphasis added.

Aerospace workers protest announcement that the Air Force did not choose Boeing to supply air-refueling tankers outside the Machinists union hall in Everett, Wash.

I am deeply troubled by the Air Force’s decision to award the KC-X tanker to a French company that has never built a tanker in its history.

— Rep. Todd Tiahrt, R-Kan., of Wichita, which has significant facilities of defense contractor Boeing Co., which lost out on the tanker aircraft award; Feb. 29.

You can put an American sticker on a plane and call it American, but you can’t call it American made. They are clearly going to be made overseas, and that is a factor we all have to be thinking about, whether we want American planes built overseas.

— Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., saying she was “frustrated, angry and in shock at this announcement” that Boeing, previously headquartered in her state, lost the Air Force tanker award; Feb. 29.

Fair is fair. Noting (not hyping) an unusually harsh global winter is merely pointing out the obvious. Dissenters of a man-made ‘climate crisis’ are using the reality of this record-breaking winter to expose the silly warming alarmism that the news media and some scientists have been ceaselessly promoting for decades.

— from an e-mail to reporter sent by Marc Morano, the communications director for the Republican minority on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, who headlined a blog post and news release about a cooler winter this way: “Earth’s ‘Fever’ Breaks: Global COOLING Currently Under Way”; March 1.

Look at what’s happened to wheat prices alone — they shot up 25 percent in one day last week. This is really the first emergency we’ve faced without a drought, war, natural disaster. We will have to cut the amount of people being served or the amount of food being served if we do not get more funds.

— Josette Sheeran, executive director of the UN’s World Food Program, on the impact of rising food prices; the UN “announced this month that it was facing a $505 million shortfall due to soaring food and fuel costs, and would cut distribution if it did not receive new funds”; March 1.

The 12,785-square-foot house, which stands out from its neighbors because it is so large, sits on slightly more than three lots with more than 200 feet of beach frontage along exclusive Carbon Beach — also known as “Billionaires Beach.” The mansion, built in 2002, has eight bedrooms, seven bathrooms and a tennis court.

— a description of the Malibu beach house sold by Nancy Daly Riordan, the estranged wife of former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan, for $68 million.

Photo credit:
Protest — Dan DeLong, Seattle Post-Intelligencer

Quotabull is a weekly feature of Scholars & Rogues.

3 replies »

  1. Thanks for another great, however dispiriting, set of quotes, Dr. D.

    Had read the Times story that described Nicole Flennaugh’s plight. Am suffering from a serious case of “There but for fortune go I.”

  2. President Bush discussing the economics of cocaine is one for the ages…they finally gave him something to talk about that he has real knowledge and mastery of.