July 9, 2011

The new oppo research: Spotting the labels on the wine on the politician's restaurant table.

Some busybody business professor named Susan Feinberg pulled this trick on Paul Ryan and Talking Points Memo is lapping it up:
When [Professor Feinberg] saw the label on the bottle of Jayer-Gilles 2004 Echezeaux Grand Cru Ryan's table had ordered, she quickly looked it up on the wine list and saw that it sold for an eye-popping $350, the most expensive wine in the house along with one other with the same pricetag.

Feinberg, an economist by training, was even more appalled when the table ordered a second bottle....

"We were just stunned," said Feinberg...

She was outraged....
So, Feinberg was appalled, stunned, and outraged. That's got to hurt.
[Feinberg] approached the table and asked Ryan "how he could live with himself" sipping expensive wine while advocating for cuts to programs for seniors and the poor. Some verbal jousting between Feinberg and the other two men ensued. One of the two men said he had ordered the wine, was drinking it and paying for it. In hearing how much the wine cost, Ryan said only: "Is that how much it was?"

The clash became especially heated when Feinberg asked the men if they were lobbyists.

"F---- her," one of them replied and stood up in a menacing way, according to Feinberg's account. Feinberg said her husband then "puffed out his chest" in response before the manager and a waiter came over and Feinberg decided she had said her piece and it was time to leave.
Time to retreat and reposition. Enough of making a show of yourself and your puffy-chested husband in a fancy restaurant that you're about to get thrown out of. Get this story to TPM where it can go viral on the internet, where lots of folks stand ready to get appalled, stunned, and outraged.
Ryan does not dispute most of the details of Feinberg's account, although he told TPM the two men are economists, not lobbyists, and characterized Feinberg as "crazy" and possibly drunk. For her part, Feinberg said she believes the economist at the table who got out his seat to challenge her was the one intoxicated.

"It was my birthday, and I'd had half a bottle of great wine with dinner," she wrote in an e-mail to TPM. "I wasn't drunk, but I was certainly emboldened to speak my mind."
We've all had birthdays like that. How much does Prof. Feinberg weigh? I'd like to calculate her level of intoxication. A woman who's drunk half a bottle of wine and gets emotionally overwrought after calculating the price of items consumed at another table by a politician she loathes should probably restrain herself from going over to that table to tell him off.

And I love the way TPM states that the lobbyist/economist at the table who stood up was "menacing."  Feinberg is the one who went over to a table of quiet diners and started interrogating them. Is this the kind of behavior TPM would like to encourage? Everyone in Washington restaurants should be eyeing the room looking for politicians they oppose, snapping photos of any expensive wine on their tables, and then — perhaps emboldened by their own wine consumption — march over and have an argument with them?

All right then! Release the Feinbergs!

Is this the oppo research of the future? What jackasses we are becoming!

TPM should be ashamed of itself passing along this embarrassing story and for the way it presented this material. In the middle of the piece, TPM informs us of Congressional ethics rules barring expensive gifts from lobbyists. I was thinking: Oh, maybe this is a serious problem. But if you keep reading, much further down, you see that Ryan paid for the meal with his own credit card, and TPM saw the receipt. Ridiculous! What hackery from the once-respectable Talking Points Memo!

364 comments:

1 – 200 of 364   Newer›   Newest»
DaveW said...

I'm still trying to get my mind around the idea of paying $350 for a bottle of wine.

AllenS said...

TPM should be ashamed of itself

Never. Never in a million years.

AllenS said...

When [Professor Feinberg] saw the label on the bottle of Jayer-Gilles 2004 Echezeaux Grand Cru

She must have really good eyesight. How close was she from the table?

Beta Rube said...

So it's now axiomatic that people who enjoy good wine must be willing to freely squander the wealth of others on destructive and expensive social engineering?

And they wonder why we think they're dopey.

Curious George said...

The scary thing is this bitch is a prof of business.

Ann Althouse said...

"I'm still trying to get my mind around the idea of paying $350 for a bottle of wine."

How about $350 for a pair of jeans? We were talking about that on the blog yesterday.

There are some products — wine, pants, cars, houses — that have a wide range of prices, tied in part to quality, part to scarcity, and part to what we used to call "snob appeal."

Wine could be far more expensive than $350. It could easily be thousands of dollars. There's no reason why you should buy it.

But what if you invited 2 world-class scholars to dinner because you wanted to pick their brains. Can you imagine ordering the most expensive wine on the menu?

Roger J. said...

As long as Mr Ryan is not paying for this wine with taxpayer funds, I dont see the problem.

So I wonder how much a white house dinner costs that is clearly paid for by taxpayers.

As for paying 350 for a bottle of wine? I once received a bit of windfall (this happens when you are exploiting widows and orphans, you know). I sprang for a 200 dollar bottle of dom perignon--gotta tell you--a 15 dollar a bottle of Chateau St Michelle was equally good. Of course, when you torture kittens as I do, taste may not be an issue.

I will say the dom Perignon's bubbles lasted longer, but the St Michelle was better.

pauls lane said...

I wonder what would hurt more? An empty 350 dollar bottle of wine to the skull or an empty 10 dollar bottle?

RLB_IV said...

I did not know that they serve wine at Dennys. I learn something every day.

MayBee said...

Paul Ryan should be putting that money toward another gown for Michelle Obama. Probably about 20 bottles of wine would buy her one State Dinner gown.
Or, for the price of 100 bottles of wine, he could have dinner at an Obama fundraiser. Where he could hear about how the rich want to throw Granny off a cliff.

JAL said...

Nice Fisk, Professor.

Sooo much good content, so little time.

But this stuck out: TPM saw the receipt.

How?

(And $1000/lb steak is so okey dokey! Taking Air Force One out for a date is so okey dokey!)

This is so hilarious on so many levels.

And scary.

These are the people who want to, and think they should, run our lives for our own good.

(Want to bet an income tax form would reveal some startling difference between the Feinbergs and the Ryans??)

Roger J. said...

hmmm--is this a reprise of the supreme court tussle involving WI justices? rather sounds like it--say whatever happened to that story?

Clearly Feinberg is a lousy economist in that she does not apparently understand the concept of utility as determined by the purchaser of the product.

What an ass.

Roger J. said...

or should that be assette?

Ron said...

Hey, what does the One drink when he's with Oprah? Budweiser? I doubt it!

The Drill SGT said...

Red Burgundies aren't my cup of tea. Burgundian whites are better IMHO. If you want Frog reds, go to Bordeaux.

Having said that, the wine seems to retail around $180, so $350 as a mark-up seems fairly good.

My rule for reds eating out? go with Merlot or Pinot. Unless you are going to pay a huge premium, your typical reds are going to be too young. Young Pinot or Merlot is likely more drinkable.

pauldar said...

I'm still trying to get my mind around the idea of paying $350 for a bottle of wine.

Oh I dunno, I cannot wrap my mind around our dumb ass leadership wanting us to pay $50 for our light bulbs, or $5.00 a gallon of gas

ark said...

Unfortunately, drunk or not, she has just ended Paul Ryan's political career. Or been the instrument of his ending his own career, which amounts to the same thing.

Roger J. said...

Drill--went to a local tasting involving 100/bottle french reds--I found them rather insipid for sipping but their character changed dramatically when paired with foods--And the expensive bottles really need to be aerated to enjoy them--

If I am going for sipping reds, good carmenere or malbec or other south american reds are great sipping wines.

Chuck66 said...

Ryan is meetingt with economists. I wish a few leftwing Democrats would meet with economists. They may learn some basic laws of finance.

Shouting Thomas said...

Hmmm.

Sorry that I can't stay entirely on point here.

But, this seems related to me.

The Woodstock Film Festival, which purports to be "fiercely independent" was brought to life and sustained by Federal grants. Our representative, Maurice Hinchey, led the drive to obtain these grants.

The Woodstock Film Festival is, in reality, a Democratic Party campaign and fund raiser event. You might say that the real purpose of the Woodstock Film Festival is to insure that Rep. Hinchey is re-elected.

I'd bet that just about every one of those great "indy" film festivals in the country could be described in the same fashion.

Should I invade the festival this year and raise hell?

ark said...

To The Drill Sgt: Red Burgundies are Pinot. And a restaurant listing wine at twice the retail price is a pretty typical markup.

Roger J. said...

ark--how did you arrive at your conclusion? Assertion is not argumentation

Chuck66 said...

Really though...bringing a boat out to try to crash Mrs. Walker's private event. Throwing a fit at a resturant over a wine that someone ordered.

I am not a fan of Michael Savage (to me he is just a right wing Michael Moore), but maybe he is right....liberalism is a mental disorder.

KenK said...

Aside from the boorishness of Feinberg's approach it's a legitimate tactic. One of Alinsky's rules is to expose your opponent to ridicule. And this is the kind of thing that will be fodder for the late night TV guys, John Stewart and etc. forever.

However turnabout is fair play too. Spy on the Dems too. Many of them have plenty of hoity-toity expensive upper-class affectations and predilections of their own, eh?

LYNNDH said...

Just what did her dinner cost?

Roger J. said...

agree with ark--a 2x or even 3x mark up is rather typical for a quality restarant that has to maintain an extensive cellar--I suspect many good cellars have a lot of loss in their holdings.

Rob said...

$350 for a good bottle of wine in a first-class restaurant is not unusual. In my town, I occasionally take my wife and 9-year-old daughter to Fogo de Chao. Fogo is a nice, upper mid-level restaurant. The top bottles there are in the $300 range.

America's Politico said...

TPM will get a Pulitzer. This is the goal of Josh. The same goal of his peers: Andy Sully, The KOS, Ezara Journ"o"list Klien, Huffy Posty, etc.

You cannot win. They know what they are doing. Today's blog will be on NPR, PBS, Maddow, etc.

It is viral.

The GOP is a sucker party. They have no idea how smart we in the Demos are. We know the voters. We know what voters want. What they will do on election day (check the box for O-B2.)

You see, the GOP is finished. Kaput. Q.E.D.

JAL said...

ark said...
Unfortunately, drunk or not, she has just ended Paul Ryan's political career. Or been the instrument of his ending his own career, which amounts to the same thing.


This is a WTQ.


A wishful thinking quote if I ever saw one.

Chuck66 said...

I am off to the local farmers market. If I spot any liberal Democrats purchasing the $3.75 dozen eggs, I will confront them.

traditionalguy said...

The DC economy is is leading wine makers out of the Depression. Ryan does his part and he SPENDS.

After dinner, Ryan probably took every one up in his private jet for fun.

What a great example.

Bob said...

People are missing the thing that really irked Feinberg. It was that Ryan's bottle of wine was more expensive than hers.

Paco Wové said...

"Man, we are gonna get so fuckin' emboldened tonight!"

MayBee said...

Spy on the Dems too. Many of them have plenty of hoity-toity expensive upper-class affectations and predilections of their own, eh?

You don't have to spy on them. Have you noticed the Obamas have a big party pretty much every week?
And that's at the taxpayers' expense!

Roger J. said...

Every time I get emboldened I either get slapped or wind up with a DUI--sometimes, though, I get lucky

Chuck66 said...

Could be worse...in Minnesota, Governor Dayton has shut down the gov't, laid off all "non-essential" employees. That is, except for his personal chief and housekeeper. When you are at trust fund baby, you really shouldn't have to open up your own can of soup or do you own laundry.

So all the state parks are closed. All the highway rest stops are closed, but Mark Dayton still has 2 state funded nannies.

JAL said...

Ren't the libs the ones that react with horror at shopping at Wal-Mart?

They sell wine too.

Or how anout dinner at McDonald's? Mmm? Ms. Feinberg -- you could have saved a *ton* of money by having your birthday party at McDonald's!!

Oh. But Michelle and the fat police would be on your case.

Mmm. What to do.

Act like a total ass and try to make yourself look like Joan of Arc or Carrie Nation?

ndspinelli said...

As I've said several times, the left is @ war and "The first casualty of war is truth"[Churchill].

phx said...

People need to leave politicians and celebrities alone in their private lives - I think that includes when they're dining in public.

It is also grotesque how easy it is for pols to live the good life thanks to those who want to curry favor. Undoubtedly it's done on all sides, and it's worse than most of us proles can imagine.

I'm not speaking about Ryan in particular, I don't know all the facts here, but I think generally these guys don't even recognize that accepting VIP treatment is low-level corruption, even if it's legal.

We could use a tea party that cares about that issue.

Paco Wové said...

A co-worker had a Minnesota vacation in the works, starting this weekend. However, much of it involved state parks, so the whole thing had to be scrapped, and replanned -- now the U.P. of Michigan will be the beneficiary of his touristy spending.

AJ Lynch said...

I bet Feinberg's husband is a lobbyist or a Beltway lawyer.

Bob said...

She be here. "Served on the International Economic Advisory team, 2004 Kerry-Edwards Campaign."

The Drill SGT said...

I will say the dom Perignon's bubbles lasted longer, but the St Michelle was better.

little bubbles are a secondary indicator of good bubbly. indicating long and careful aging. As for good value in bubbly, go to Iron Horse or one of thtransplanted Frog cellars in Napa.

For cheap and good, go Spanish

Roger J. said...

clearly a 300+ thread, esp since Professor Reynolds has linked it.

JAL said...

Hey Roger -- I thought the same thing -- drink half a bottle of wine and tell the cop you weren't drunk, you were emboldened to try the obstacle course on I-195.

SPImmortal said...

I'm just speechless at how idiotic and lame the antics of liberal idiots are getting.

I don't know how that lady isn't totally embarrased with herself.

F said...

"Hmmmmm. Let me see. I think I'll have the Jayer-Gilles 2004 Echezeaux Grand Cru. And bring it in a brown paper bag, will you? There might be Democrats in the restaurant."

wv: stolored: what Feinberg was.

Calypso Facto said...

It took Ms. Feinberg 9 years to get her PhD and then 11 years to move from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor. 4 years and counting as an Associate. Now another middle-aged birthday of being forced to realized she's going nowhere fast. Time to drink up and take that bitterness and anger out on someone smarter and more successful.

Just for the record, I'd never personally spend $350 on a bottle of wine, but I really don't care at all what other people do to amuse themselves with their own money.

Big Mike said...

Feinberg was appalled, stunned, and outraged.

Also drunk, apparently.

gutless said...

The aggrieved Rutgers economist served on the International Economic Advisory team, 2004 Kerry-Edwards Campaign. To sum up, a putatively enebriated, partisan, ill mannered woman with a state college sinecure.

Mr. Forward said...

Republican wine = $350
Democratic wine = Priceless

Muggins said...

2 points.

I wonder if the outraged professor became outraged when Pelosi flew up to Greenland to watch the ice melt at govt. expense? That's more than $350. And I'd like to know what food and drink Pelosi and her entourage had on those flights.

Wine is over rated. Better to educate oneself on quality single malt whisky, which can be easily done on uTube, just punch in "Ralfy", and you'll be happily schooled.

Chuck66 said...

Bob, EXCELLENT find. So she is just another politician. But I see she speaks French. Go figure.

Paco Wové said...

"TPM should be ashamed of itself..."

What AllenS said. Shame? Have you ever seen "shame" from the likes of Garage or AlphaLiberal? By definition, a partisan hack is shameless.

Joe Schmoe said...

Did Ryan pay for the whole bill? He seems surprised that his guest ordered a $350 bottle of wine. Either he's playing dumb or his guest is acting wildly out of etiquette by ordering the most expensive things on the menu on his host's dime.

This whole story cracks me up. I can't believe it has any legs. Here in the People's Republic of Massachusetts our esteemed senior senator had a $7 million dollar yacht built in Australia (not in the U.S.!), and registered it in Rhode Island to save about a half million in excise taxes. When called on it he reluctantly registered it in Mass. Isn't that a whole heaping more devious than paying for a $350 bottle of wine with your own money? Are we presuming to tell congressfolk how to spend their paychecks now?

Roger J. said...

Drill--I have to (slightly) admonish you. You are bringing tankers and cavalrymen in disrepute by disclosing we may actually drink good wine rather than PBR or moonshine. :)

Ann Althouse said...

"But this stuck out: 'TPM saw the receipt.' How?"

They obviously got it from Ryan. There's a link to a photo of the receipt contained in the article. Look at it.

Jim Treacher said...

"What hackery from the once-respectable Talking Points Memo!"

When were they respectable? Among whom?

virgil xenophon said...

Chuck66/

Granted that Savage isn't everyone's cup of tea, but a right-wing Michael Moore? Puuuuleeeze! Savage not only has his PhD, but has published in his field. Yes, he WILL rant at the drop of a hat and is into hyperbole big-time, (with occasional forays into frothing-at-the-mouth territory,lol) and his heightened sense of outrage over all things PC lefty is legendary, but he also offers up some gems of insight/political policy analysis at the same time. Over-he-top? Yes, but nobody's fool and certainly no MM. A delight to listen to, imo, if only to chortle in appreciation of first class creative raving/out-sized over-the-top outrage..

Paco Wové said...

"For cheap and good, go Spanish"

Seguras Viudas 'Aria' +++++++++++++

¡Muy excelente!

Chuck66 said...

An $80 tip for what was primarily just a wine stop? The wait staff there would hate me.

Roger J. said...

what Paco Wove said--great value

Joe Schmoe said...

Sorry; I was wrong in my earlier post. The yacht was made in NEW ZEALAND:
http://www.bostonherald.com/track/inside_track/view.bg?articleid=1269698

Joe Schmoe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Roger J. said...

Professor--if you could somehow bring Sarah Palin into this thread you would 500

ndspinelli said...

What is a Jewish American princess favorite w[h]ine?

"Why are lobbyists buying you expensive dinners when you are trying to kill my grandmother?"

Hagar said...

Sounds a bit like the time the company I worked for sent me and my family to an all expenses paid weekend at a resort as reward for a job well done.
We went out for dinner the first evening and I did not know what the funny symbols next to the menu items meant, but it was explained to me when the bill came.
So, went to the grocery store and cooked in the cabin for the rest of the weekend.

Gtacious said...

This useless nut job is taking $156,000.00 a year in taxpayer money and she has the gall to tell others how to spend their money. Typical liberal...wonder how much she gave to charity this year if she's dinning in D.C. at Bistro Bis?

NYTNewYorker said...

Just another liberal snot trying to make a difference....Fail.


wv-holin, liberals have a holin the head and it shows.

Kevin said...

You want oppo research?

The first three reviews on Feinberg from RateMyProfessor:

I wasted my money...U have will face hard time if u will take her. I took her for Love & Money, first she told us that she will drop one exam, at last she changed her mind and no body understood the way she graded. It was extremely unfair to most of the students who worked hard in real and later they received very unfair grade.

---

Dont take this professor, u will never understand her grading system.She will not teach anything and make exams very tough and even if u do great in exams as compare to others, u will not receive fair grade...TRUST ME DONT TAKE HER

---

I completely agree with the previous comment. The woman taught one class and had guest speakers every other class, What is my tuition paying you for? She also gave ridiculous exams. Class average was a 40 something on the first and a 50 something on the second. Embarrassing for the teacher! Don't waste your time with feinberg!

Roger J. said...

ndspinelli--please dont start the Jewish Princess jokes--you will have to listen to mine, and you will get Cedarford started about progressive jews. there will be no good outcome :)

Drew said...

TPM should be ashamed of itself passing along this embarrassing story and for the way it presented this material.

TPM is incapable of showing shame.

bagoh20 said...

Well, I'm sure of one thing that's overpriced and should not be paid for - a business class taught by Professor Feinberg.

Hari said...

How much less will the staff make in tips now that its unsafe for people to be seen in public paying for expensive wine with their own money?

The receipt shows that Ryan tipped $80 on a $400 bill (20%). Next time, he'll order cheap wine, keep the tab to $150 and tip $30.

Shouting Thomas said...

And, Althouse, one of the favorite themes of the Woodstock Film Festival... the oppression of gays and the genocidal campaign waged on gays by hetero men.

Some coincidence, huh?

Drew said...

Love & Money

She's a university professor who teaches a class called "Love and Money"? I think that's all I need to know about her.

And people wonder why university degrees are increasingly worthless.

Phil 3:14 said...

Its going to be class warfare from now until Nov. 2012.

While we suffer through the Bush recession the Republicans and their fat cat supporters fly around in their corporate jets sipping $350 a bottle pinot!

So I will once and for all have to memorize this fact and repeat it over and over

The top-earning 5 percent of taxpayers (AGI over $159,619), however, still paid far more than the bottom 95 percent. The top 5 percent earned 34.7 percent of the nation's adjusted gross income, but paid approximately 58.7 percent of federal individual income taxes. (source)

So tell me again about fair share

gerry said...

Three's no reason why you should buy it.

I don't understand. What if I can afford it and want to try it?

Hagar said...

For those who can't read:

Rep. Ryan paid for his own meal and one of the bottles of wine, even though he only had one glass from it. Thus the $80 tip. The other two gentlemen presumably paid - and tipped - for their meals and the other bottle.

Drew said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mick said...

Alinsky--- Pick the target, then demonize and ridicule it. Alinsky is innate to the Left.

Roger J. said...

Hmmm: love and/or money--sounds like some kind of prostitution thing--I give you money you give me love and we agree on the price beforwherscie hand

Chase said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
virgil xenophon said...

Feinberg's classlessness aside, and the little matter of lefty pots calling conservative kettles black, Ryan STILL should have known the political implications of a Republican "budget cutter" being seen in public drinking expensive wine in the present poisoned political atmosphere. The "atmospherics" were NOT GOOD. Ryan is NOT "just another" pvt citizen spending his own money--and I say this as a life-time rock-ribbed conservative Republican.

Curious George said...

"AJ Lynch said...
I bet Feinberg's husband is a lobbyist or a Beltway lawyer."

I also bet that if he "puffed out his chest" the biggest risk for what might follow would be from dying laughing.

Chase said...

This is the desperation of liberals today.

Nedia Matters (left-wing porn)is the most disgusting, despicable Democrat organization today, and that says a lot.

Now they have started this: Raising the emotional stakes by

Trailing G.O.P. With Cameras, Seeking Gaffes

American Bridge 21st Century, a new Democratic organization that aims to record every handshake, every utterance by Republican candidates in 2011 and 2012, looking for gotcha moments that could derail political ambitions or provide fodder for television advertisements by liberal groups next year.

The organization has hired a dozen professional trackers like Mr. Fielding, outfitted them with the latest high-tech cameras and computers and positioned them in key states where Republican candidates are busy chattering away to voters. If all works as planned, incriminating moments captured by American Bridge will quickly become part of the political bloodstream.

Combined with a team of 20 researchers in a Washington “war room” that has a large rack of computer servers, the effort is part of a push by Democratic groups to bolster their opposition research.

Republicans also have trackers, but so far have not assembled the kind of centralized video archive of political caught-on-tape moments that their rivals envision.



What pieces of human refuse. Democrats and this President cannot win the issues on their merits, so they have to lie which includes constant specious spin - uncorelated bits of informatioon overload so that every stupid and unable-to-reason-for-themselves Democrat/liberal/African American (slave to the Democrat mindset) go "Republican Bad. Me no like Republican." Stupid.

That's how Democrats govenr. Not by appeal to reason, but information overload and "Wait, look over here!" and "What about this?"

If this was the time of Jesus, the Democrat Party would be the Pharisees: the ones enamored of power, willing to do whatever it takes to keep it,never really caring about the people they "serve", and willing to kill the Son of God.

Democrats still do all of this this very day.

That Dreadful Hillbilly said...

So after looking at the receipt--and if the table got 2 bottles--it appears they went dutch on the wine and Ryan bought the nachos!?

edutcher said...

Given all the material available on how the Zeros love livin' large in the White House - for Michelle, ever summer is Vacation Summer, as opposed to Summer Vacation - how they expect to get any mileage out of this shows how desperate they are.

Roger J. said...

As long as Mr Ryan is not paying for this wine with taxpayer funds, I dont see the problem.

If we're going to do truth in advertising, unless he paid for it from an old bank account with money earned from his pre-politics job, his salary does, after all, come from the taxpayers.

As long as the money came from his salary, however, it's his to spend as he wants.

PatCA said...

Now that the drunken Mr. and Ms. Feinberg have sobered up, I would refer her, the so-called economist to a little remedial lesson in same.

That wine provided jobs all over the world.

William said...

What is a socially conscious academic doing dining in such an expensive restaurant? I understand that it was her birthday and I would not begrudge her a few extra raisins in her tofu, but this extraordinary excess does not speak well of her social conscience. Far better if she had donated the cost of her expensive meal to the starving children of Darfur. Some child in Darfur will starve today because of Feinberg's piggishness. I expect this kind of behavior from a Congressman but not from a socially progressive academic.

pbAndj said...

I thought that Althouse was in favor of in-depth, inquisitive reporting that relays accounts from opposing sources, seeks on the record accounts, reveals the relevant legal/ethical boundaries, and searches out evidence. No doubt that was just BS du jour.


Myself, I don't care about this wine-gate. But, beyond her changing standards for reporting, it seems odd when Althouse concludes that TPM is engaged in a ridiculous hack attack. Especially, when much of her complaint is based on identifying the supposed hyperbole of the TPM piece.

Claude Hopper said...

Rutgers is a state school, nuf said.
(Sorry Ann).

From Inwood said...

The other day a bum, OOPS, a homeless person, stopped me in front of a Starbucks & said "Hey, buddy, got $5 for a cup of coffee?"

I was, well " was appalled, stunned, and outraged".

And I'm not even an economist.

PatCA said...

More and more, I think she is part of this movement to track Repubs. If not formally, certainly informally.

MayBee said...

The more expensive the wine, the more taxes paid on the sale. No?

bagoh20 said...

These people certainly have the right to spend their money how they wish, but $400 bucks for a single person's meal including one glass of wine is just silly stupid. I do question such a person's ability to make smart use of money.

Although I'm pretty well off myself, most of my friends are lower middle to poor. This makes it impossible for me to spend like that. That and being dirt poor myself for the first 30 years of my life.

As soon I see a price on something that is crazy, I immediately think about how that money could be used better by me or someone I know. I like this paralysis.

Simon said...

So, takeaway: $300 jeans good, $300 wine bad. Lots of things cost $300, and sure, you can get a decent bottle of wine for $30, but people routinely blow $300 on clothes of which they can buy reasonably good knock-offs at WalMart for $30, but they buy them anyway.

Chip Ahoy said...

Please. Get the schizophrenic outrage sorted. You're killing me over here.

Pablo, commenter at Protein Wisdom, calls Ryan a piker compared to Obama with a link which I understood by way of tu quoque, but as the article continues it's actually written in reverse of TPM-speak.

It's an item on the wine sipped by Barak and Michelle Obama at Buckingham, Echezeaux Grand Cru which the article states retails from $1,000 to $1,700 in the U.S. (quite a broad price range there).

*snip hinterlandgazette*

So, let me get this straight. The Royal Family or their handlers decide what to serve the president and his wife for dinner and it becomes a problem to the haters. Somehow a wine for the ridiculously wealthy is just not fit for the black president, right? He and Mrs. O should have had a tall glass of Kool-Aid right? The grape kind. Would The Drudge Report have reported on that? Once again, the right has shown they have no class and will nitpick the president on just about anything. Shameful.

Yes, do get all that straightened. The umbrage refers to this late May secondary Drudge link "sips $1,000 wine" under the main Drudge link of Obama signing the wrong year in Westminster guestbook.

Drudge was asked how he picks the stories he links, he answered, "I link stories I think are interesting." As with all Drudge links, whatever moralizing is given to the item occurs within one's own head by the simple fact of the link. The polar opposite of Susan Feinberg, TPM, and Hinterland Gazzette who all twist themselves into knots breaking down their outrage to little bits and shoving it down our throats, and with no consistency whatsoever about their outrage.

SPImmortal said...

"Feinberg's classlessness aside, and the little matter of lefty pots calling conservative kettles black, Ryan STILL should have known the political implications of a Republican "budget cutter" being seen in public drinking expensive wine in the present poisoned political atmosphere. The "atmospherics" were NOT GOOD. Ryan is NOT "just another" pvt citizen spending his own money--and I say this as a life-time rock-ribbed conservative Republican."

concern troll status: concerned

AJ Lynch said...

Curious George:
I agree with you and was gonna say that too but did not know how to phrase it without offending all librul girly men like Mr. Feinberg.

Also, I bet Prof. Feinberg drives a Volvo or Audi.

bagoh20 said...

Although I would never pay it, I think $300 jeans are much more understandable than the wine. The wine lasts for just a moment, but a pair of jeans is enjoyed for many hours over a number of years, and may even get handed down.

Either good wine or jeans can get a girl laid though, and the combo is a no-brainer.

Big Mike said...

Mr. Forward, make that Democrat whine and your observation is palpably correct.

T J Sawyer said...

So how did the government make out on this dinner? Let's do the economist's back of the envelope calculation on a part of the deal!

We know that Ryan tipped $80 on his third of the tab. We assume the economists were equally proper. Total $240 (for 90 minutes work! - waiting tables sure beats computer programming!)

FICA (both halves) comes in at $36.72

Income tax? Let's guess 28% marginal rate. That gets Obama another $67.20

D.C. has a 10% sales tax on the meals and wine. Assuming an equal split that total was $1178.10 with the tax making up $107.10 of that

So total taxes to that point on only the waitron's income and the sales tax are $211.02 Those are just the easily identified taxes.

Anyone want to bet that either the Restaurant owner of Vineyard owner even came close to that total on this transaction?

And the federal government got its $211.02 with no investment and no risk. What a deal!

Paco Wové said...

"...it seems odd when Althouse concludes that TPM is engaged in a ridiculous hack attack."

But they are engaged in a ridiculous hack attack.

You'd realize that, if you weren't such a fucking hack.

virgil xenophon said...

@bagoh20 @10:33/


"Candy is dandy, but liquor is quicker"

--------------Odgen Nash

Paco Wové said...

I thought that was Dorothy Parker.

Curious George said...

AJ Lynch said...

Also, I bet Prof. Feinberg drives a Volvo or Audi."

Maybe an Audi TT...and at about $40k MSRP, in the words of another professor "There's no reason why you should buy it." But alas, she did.

The Grey Man said...

Y'all are missing the point. This was a Bradley Maneuver. Charge your target, initiate a situation, then claim victim status when the target attempts any sort of defense.

I blame the media. The "fourth estate" has become the section 8 of ethics and non-partisanship.

Mrs. X said...

According to TPM, Feinberg wrote, "I was an economist so I started doing the envelope calculations and quickly figured out that those two bottles of wine was [sic] more than two-income working family [sic] making minimum wage earned in a week." [sics mine]

One assumes the quotation marks indicate that TPM has directly quoted Feinberg's email. Being a former economist many have enabled her to add but it hasn't done squat for her grammar.

garage mahal said...

So taxpayers were paying Ryan to sip $350 wine at a meeting to figure out ways to fuck the working class and the poor in this country. What's the big deal? That's what we send them to Washington D.C. to do!

William said...

A $350 bottle of wine celebrates the intangibles. You're not only rich, but you're a man of taste. You're willing to put your money where your mouth is when it comes to indulging that taste. Fine dining is supposed to be a pleasant experience that celebrates civilization and good manners. Which is the greater sin in such a setting: bad manners or an overpriced wine?......If some pro life people wished to make a point by throwing aborted foetuses at Chelsea Clinton during her wedding, I think we can all agree that such a gesture would be in poor taste. I would call upon all liberals to take a similar stand against the bad manners of Feinberg.

MayBee said...

If you advocate taxing other people more and allowing the government to continue to borrow so it can spend as it wishes, only then can you spend your own money as if it is your own.

From Inwood said...

Desperately Seeking Only GOP Gaffes

"Trailing G.O.P. With Cameras, Seeking Gaffes

[a "corps" of guys in all 57 states, Inwood}

"Doug Mills/The New York Times

"Chris Harris and Tiffany Germain in American Bridge 21st Century's Washington “war room.”

"Aaron Fielding recorded Mitt Romney during an Independence Day parade in Amherst, N.H. At 27, he is a full-time “tracker” for American Bridge 21st Century, a new Democratic organization that aims to record every handshake, every utterance by Republican candidates in 2011 and 2012, looking for gotcha moments that could derail political ambitions or provide fodder for television advertisements by liberal groups next year."

The organization has hired a dozen professional trackers like Mr. Fielding, outfitted them with the latest high-tech cameras and computers and positioned them in key states where Republican candidates are busy chattering away to voters. If all works as planned, incriminating moments captured by American Bridge will quickly become part of the political bloodstream.

Combined with a team of 20 researchers in a Washington “war room” that has a large rack of computer servers, the effort is part of a push by Democratic groups to bolster their opposition research. Republicans also have trackers, but so far have not assembled the kind of centralized video archive of political caught-on-tape moments that their rivals envision.

“Our obligation here is to get these guys on the record with what they really believe so they can’t walk away from their record,” said Rodell Mollineau, a former aide to Senator Harry Reid of Nevada and the group’s president. “There are many opportunities for us to record Republicans showing their true colors.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/09/us/politics/09trackers.html?pagewanted=2&_r=1&hp

virgil xenophon said...

LOL, AA, you'd better hurry on over to Kate @smalldeadanimals who links this am to the guy at Legal Insurrection who has taken you apart this am for your comments this am about voting for Obama (and he h/ts Crack!) Better defend yourself! LOL!!

Eteocles said...

That restaurant has their wine list online (http://www.bistrobis.com/index1.html) and you can see that $350 is the most expensive bottle they have. Some Googling found that you can get it for $100 a bottle wholesale. So it's massively marked up (the most expensive item on the list is always going to be a bad deal) and wiser wine drinkers would pick more carefully from the list. But it's still his money and this is a stupid kerfuffle.

gefillmore said...

'puffed out his chest'?
omg, I woulda peed my pants!

I have two daughters who have worked in the restaurant business; I appreciate the fact that ryan left a tip of over 20%.

One commenter noted that the governor of minnesota has closed the state parks. Gov. sundquist (r) of tennessee closed the state parks several years ago in a battle over state income tax (hah! he lost!). What is the percent of the state parks budget to the total state budget? Whom do the closings most affect: the rich, the middle class, the poor? I've never forgiven sundquist for closing our parks (like he cares; I guess that's the point.).

Mary Beth said...

If anyone's tips drop because (they perceive) people are ordering fewer things or less expensive things, she will be blamed. Pissing off politicians is one thing but I would avoid pissing off people who handle my food.

Paul Zrimsek said...

So taxpayers were paying Ryan to sip $350 wine

Does the other Garage Mahal, the one who insists that Wisconsin teachers pay 100% of their own pension and health benefits, know that this impostor is at large?

I also wonder whether any of Prof. Feinberg's TAs could afford Bistro Bis.

gefillmore said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Curious George said...

The day a lefty like Susan Feinberg says "With energy costs soaring and hurting the poor and elderly most how can you propose xyz and be an energy whore yourself" I'll take this shit seriously.

MrMaryk said...

"Once Respectable" Talking Points Memo? When?

MrMaryk said...

Oh, Garage, I didn't hear you complaining when Nancy billed the government for thousands in booze for her government funded flights, and took her paycheck, too.

DADvocate said...

There is so much wrong with this I don't know where to start.

What was Feinberg, a leftie living off taxes paid by others, doing in such an expensive restaurant to begin with? The dives that minimum wage workers eat at, when they can afford to eat out, don't serve any wine more expensive than Boone's Farm.

Apparently, Feinberg believes that expensive wines should be outlawed and we should live in a world of mediocre vinification. The left rears its ugly head of fascism and totalitarianism again.

I recommend that Feinberg only dine at eateries in blue collar parts of town, serve hourly wage workers and welfare recipients, and whose only alcoholic beverages are wines that cost under $5 a bottle and beers that sell for $3 or less a six pack at the local grocery.

Another pig.

William said...

When word gets back to Ryan's district that he's a practicing oenenphile, he will lose votes.

Shouting Thomas said...

So taxpayers were paying Ryan to sip $350 wine at a meeting to figure out ways to fuck the working class and the poor in this country. What's the big deal? That's what we send them to Washington D.C. to do!

garbage's imagination runs wild!

I love it when you just make up things, garbage. It's so entertaining.

Taxpayers were "paying" him to sip wine.

There is no end to your lying, garbage. You just plain enjoy lying.

DADvocate said...

So taxpayers were paying Ryan to sip $350 wine at a meeting to figure out ways to fuck the working class and the poor in this country.

Working class people make the wine. The same way working class people make corporate jets and yachts. Prevent and hinder the rich from buying those items, guess who loses their jobs?

You're not a complete dumb ass, but you come close.

Rick67 said...

Which wine to drink should be a decision between a Congressman and his doctor.

DADvocate said...

her husband then "puffed out his chest"

I wonder how many times he'll get his ass kicked before he decides little Suzy isn't worth it.

garage mahal said...

Does the other Garage Mahal, the one who insists that Wisconsin teachers pay 100% of their own pension and health benefits, know that this impostor is at large?

I'm getting something when I pay public workers. Things like mail, teachers, fire and safety protection, snowplow drivers, garbage haulers, clean water, nice parks. I get nothing from paying Ryan to sip $350 wine. I get nothing from Ryan whatsoever. It's amazing to me working class Republicans continually fall for what this charlatan sells. He voted for all the budget busting debt he now tells us must be paid for by the working class, elderly, and disabled -- or he'll blow the economy up. How fucking stupid do you have to be to vote for it unless you're part of the tiny fraction of people that benefit from it?

lmaginn said...

An important point that should not be over looked, what color were the so called
economists? If they were both white, then this leaves Ryan with some explaining to do.
There are plenty economists of color. Maybe he doesn't want to hear from them or share his fancy wine with them. We all know this can lead to only one conclusion regarding Mr.Ryan.

ricpic said...

I'm a big fan of Barefoot Wine. The Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon especially. Seven bucks a pop. None better. Seriesly. Try it.

YoungHegelian said...

That nasty Republican bastard Ryan has no idea how to behave properly in a tony DC restaurant.

He should take lessons from Democratic giants of yore like Ted Kennedy and learn how do things properly.

There is, after all, a right and a wrong way to make a waitress sandwich with a fellow senator.

Michael K said...

agree with ark--a 2x or even 3x mark up is rather typical for a quality restarant that has to maintain an extensive cellar--I suspect many good cellars have a lot of loss in their holdings.

It is also typical for the markup to be less on more expensive wines. The restaurants make their money on the cheaper wines. By the way, that is not that expensive a wine by most expensive restaurant standards.

When I was still in practice, we used to take our office staff and their husbands/ boyfriends out to dinner at an expensive restaurant for Christmas. I would order really good wines, wines that I would never ordinarily order in a restaurant, so they felt appreciated and I got the chance to taste the wine.

Steve in Philly said...

Hey, kids! Does anybody remember how much went to the Former Fannie Mae Folks?

steve u said...

Close analysis of the receipt suggests that Ryan may have consumed more than one glass.

DADvocate said...

I get nothing from paying Ryan to sip $350 wine. I get nothing from Ryan whatsoever.

What'd you get for non-public employee Michele Obama's taxpayer financed trip to Spain, etc? Your stupidity is shining bright today.

Seeing Red said...

Well!

It's a good thing this confrontation didn't happen at Carnivore in Milwaukee.

Eye-popping $350 bottle in DC?


Carnivore has a

$4,500


let me repeat that


$4,500 bottle

in MILWAUKEE!

Gaaaaahhh, those people r sooo provicial it's getting beyond pathetic.

Seeing Red said...

provincial

virgil xenophon said...

APOLOGIES, Ann re my post, above. It was the guy at "The Virginian" that took you on this am--I'd just left Legal Insurrection prior to posting and became "confused"/Brain freeze--advancing age as excuse rather than the truth--plain stupid carelessness.

dogzilla said...

Progressives are the Gladys Kravitz of humanity. They are constantly snooping on the rest of us because they know what is best for everyone around them. They are always venting over some outrage or another and, as a result, end up looking like idiots to most reasonable adults.

Feinberg and her puffy husband need to mind their own f***ing business. She's nothing more than a nosey little drunk, evidently. What Paul Ryan does with his own money is of no concern to me. I'm more concerned about those two in the White House, living it up like lottery winners on our tax dollars and insisting no one *really* cares about joblessness.

The end of Ryan's career? I seriously doubt it, except among those self-righteous leftists who were never going to vote for him in the first place.

MayBee said...

Hey, kids! Does anybody remember how much went to the Former Fannie Mae Folks?

That's not the same. Their get rick quick scheme was done in the name of helping people.

Seeing Red said...

IF it was in depth, they'd tell us all about Feinberg.


LOLOLOL

Issob Morocco said...

Hi Ann,

One thing to remember as well is restaurants double or triple the cost of a bottle of wine as that is a nice profit center for them. So a $350 bottle of wine purchased retail could be as low as $125. I purchase wines like that on occasion, not often but I have, as that is my choice how I spend my money. Buttinsky Feinberg was seeking to create an issue on a person who the Dimmycrats fear the most, Paul Ryan.

Tell me how much Nancy Pelosi spent on meals and libations for family and friends when traveling as Speaker on her Gulfstream to and fro DC/SF on her many travels?

I seem to recall it being in the hundred thousand dollar range total. Where was Prof. Feinberg and Puffy her husband then?

Proof said...

@Chip Ahoy: Maybe they were busting on Ryan because he was drinking cheap wine, (Compared to Obama)?

Carol_Herman said...

Drunken academic. Who thought she had a story against Paul Ryan that would go viral.

Instead she has no manners.

Too bad another dame at the table didn't just get up and throw a glass of wine in her face!

You know, when you hover over guests at another table ... getting a glass full of wine tossed at ya ... isn't a lawsuit! For it to be a lawsuit you'd have had to have remain seated at your own table!

And, to know the price of the wine?

Well, let's see. Feinberg looked at the wine menu. Which got her good and steamed. She rose. And, went over to another diner's table ... to fire off.

And, I'm going to bet she RECOGNIZED Ryan! The rest are her LYING verbal gymnastics!

Maybe, "viral" produces something unexpected?

TOTWTYTR said...

So, was confronting Ryan her birthday present to herself, or did she ruin her birthday celebration? I think the former, she got off on "speaking truth to power." Her puffy chested husband must have had a great time when they got home.

If anyone wants to contact her, her phone number and email are listed on the Rutgers site. Just to say "Happy Birthday".

Rabel said...

Apparently Professor Feinberg has to put in a tough two day week for that Rutgers salary.
From the Washington Post:

Date:
Sunday, April 3, 2011

"Learn to schedule your time more efficiently since long commutes will limit when you can run errands," says extreme commuter Susan Feinberg, an associate professor at Rutgers Business School in New Brunswick, N.J. She lives 200 miles away in Washington and takes a train back and forth a couple of days each week."

Kansas City said...

Feinberg is dreadful, but it is amusing that she thought she had this big espose apparently without thinking about how it made her look like a moron. Not just her boorish, drunk and nosy conduct, but her own email description taking credit for being an economist as the reason she was able to calculate what a minimum wage couple would make. It she had any sense about how to help minimum wage people, she would see Ryan's $80 tip and realize how he helped the waiter/waitress. Ryan saved his butt by having that receipt and I also thought his responses to TPM were very good (and reflects well on TPM for printing it, even though the origianl story was a hack/hatchet job).

But, I'm surprised more of this type of political surveillance does not take place more often. I suppose we should be pleased that there are still few Feinberg's around.

William Teach said...

I wonder if Feinberg was appealed and shocked at the $757 billiondollsr price tag for painting bridges and building turtle tunnels

Chef Mojo said...

As an actual fine dining chef, I'm finding the comments here both amusing and sad. Some points.

First, Garage Mahal is fucking insane. Nothing he has posted here makes a lick of sense. Just wanted to get that out of the way.

The less expensive wines are always marked up more. That's how we make money on them. Many restaurants carry exclusives; wines not on the retail market. Many of those are acquired at discount. Some of those can be marked up 3 to 5 times. Deal with it.

Bistro Bis has a typical DC winelist. Nothing extraordinary about it. Hits all bases like it should. Caters to many different levels and tastes, as it should. And yeah, the less expensive wines are marked up a lot.

For those of you basing the markup on internet searches of the retail price of wine? Stop beclowning yourself. You think the restaurant is paying retail? You have NO idea what they're paying for that wine, because it's real tough to get that information unless you're actually a wholesale buyer of wine. Sometimes the gap between wholesale and retail prices are huge at the less expensive range. Less so for the expensive vintages.

$350 for a Jayer-Gilles 2004 Echezeaux Grand Cru is fair and to be expected. It's a damn fine wine, and one of the better grand cru burgundian values, all things considered.

For all of you sneering at expensive wines, blow it out your ass. Barefoot Cab? It's like saying your taste in cars runs towards Trabants because they're a good value, and, well, they get you where you're going. There's a reason for that Grand Cru on the label. It's the best of the best from that chateau, and not much of it is made. People that really know and appreciate wines are going to understand that. A good restaurant is going to cater to those people.

I've worked restaurants in DC. General rule in the front of the house is that the best tippers are Republicans and K Street lobbyists. Dems and NGO types don't tip nearly as well. Tourists don't tip for shit. Foreigners are the worse.

I come away from this with a lot of respect for Rep. Ryan and his dining partners. They showed good taste in ordering, behaved themselves in an inexcusable confrontation and took care of the front of the house.

The restaurant should be credited with the way they handled the situation. The moved to 86 Feinberg and her husband when it became apparent that they were belligerently confronting other diners. That should be a clue to who was in the right in this situation. Feinberg's behavior was inexcusable, and as far as I'm concerned, bordering on assault.

wv: cracer: Feinberg behaved like a no class cracker at a Denny's.

B. said...

So how much did she tip? Does she normally accost people about their food and beverage choices? Does she do this to people buying soda with their food stamp debit cards? What about really fat people--does she bug them, too?
I wonder if she'll ever be able to go back to this place.

B. said...

Does she follow around food stamp recipients, too? I'll bet she'll never be able to get a reservation at this place again.

Paul Zrimsek said...

I want to comment a moment on the weirdness of Prof. Feinberg's moral calculus. She evidently doesn't believe that there's any sort of general obligation for people with money to avoid lavish living so long as there is want-- else she wouldn't have been at the expensive restaurant in the first place, or at least acknowledging her own hypocrisy in being there.

So: the obligation is a special one, which falls on Paul Ryan but not on Susan Feinberg. But if you believe in a special obligation of this sort, wouldn't you expect it to fall on those who DO believe in redistribution, rather than those who don't? Isn't Feinberg's actual position a bit like believing that Jews are specially obliged to pray facing Mecca?

Alec Rawls said...

The "once respectable" TPM? I don't think so.

Michael K said...

I think this is not the first time Paul Ryan has gone large on the dinner menu. Look at those three guys at the next table. That sure looks like Paul Ryan and his friends.

However, the sommelier decants the wine so you can't have some Marxist professor checking the labels.

Michael said...

I wouldnt recommed 300 a bottle wine for your usual diet of fried cheese but i would urge you to get out more you Midwestern commenters. You sound like a bunch of lefties whining about millionaires and billionaires. 300 is expensive but not crazily so in a first class restaurantt a which, without asking, i can assure you does not serve cheese curds.

The gall of the woman is what stuns and apalls me. What a colossal bitch. She should have been out helping the poor instead of holing up in a fancy restaurant with right wingers.

She,of course, did not give one shit about the tip the waiter got from the rich righties. Her puffy chested husband probably left ten percent.

DADvocate said...

I wonder what Feinberg is doing to lower the cost of attending Rutgers University, the state university of New Jersey? Tuition plus room and board are: $23,466 for a New Jersey resident and $35,222 for a non-resident. A couple making minimum wage couldn't pay to send a single kid to Rutgers.

Progressively Defensive said...

She's an ape. There is a time and a place for debates on policy and that was not it. Paul Ryan is a good man with courage and works hard for his constituents and the USA.

Carol_Herman said...

Using Ann's link, I went and saw the bill at this "Bisto" place.

We know the bottle of wine cost $350. And, the total bill came to $392. There were 4 people at the table. Meaning each person ate about $10 worth of food?

They only ordered an appetizer, each?

What happened to the second bottle of the same wine, Feinberg said came to the table?

I guess ya gotta be an economist to make this one of those evenings where you're too full to get up from your seat at the table?

Since this restaurant is in DC, the odds are that everyone in that restaurant was staring at Paul Ryan throughout.

And, if I were Ryan's secretary? When I was making dinner reservations for my boss ... I'd tell the restaurant to have an empty JUG OF GALLO on hand ... so that whatever is ordered for the table ... gets switched into it.

That will cause a might roar of reports on spotting Ryan out eating. But the GALLO JUG would be funny.

nevadabob said...

"I wonder what Feinberg is doing to lower the cost of attending Rutgers University ..."

How can Feinberg ... a public employee ... afford to eat in a restaurant that serves $350 bottles of wine to US Congressmen?

We're clearly paying her too much. Let's see how much, exactly by doing our own oppo research on this public figure and government official.

MayBee said...

If someone would only pass a law instructing Feinberg to pay more in taxes, then she would be using her money to help the poor rather than spending it at a nice restaurant.
Paul Ryan does not want to pass such a law. You can imagine why she took this this personally. Without Paul Ryan, she would not be wasting her money on herself.

nevadabob said...

"How much does Prof. Feinberg weigh? I'd like to calculate her level of intoxication."

Susan Feinberg weighs about 118 pounds. If she drank half a bottle of wine (3 to 4 glasses) in the amount of time it takes to eat a meal (approximately one hour) then she was almost surely legally too drunk to drive when she assaulted the Congressman.

Alex said...

The "atmospherics" were NOT GOOD. Ryan is NOT "just another" pvt citizen spending his own money--and I say this as a life-time rock-ribbed conservative Republican.

This. The narrative is devastating to the GOP. This will be the win the Dems needed. Can you imagine Ryan showing his face in townhall meetings ever again?

Carol_Herman said...

On second thought. If I knew a table next to mine were drinking a bottle of very expensive wine ... I think I'd ask them if I minded have the bottle when it was empty.

Heck, I might even ask Paul Ryan to autograph the label.

But I'd really take it home. Wash it out. And, use it as my Gallo decanter.

I wouldn't even need a paper bag to carry the empty bottle outside.

Alex said...

What'd you get for non-public employee Michele Obama's taxpayer financed trip to Spain, etc? Your stupidity is shining bright today.

Or Pelosi's jetting around to to tune of 100s of 1000s of taxyaper expense. Garage' hypocrisy if astounding. The problem is the GOP refuses to point out the limo liberals.

Alex said...

I know the atmospherics aren't good for people like me who advocate austerity. After all, I spent about $4000 in electronic goods in 2010 alone.

nevadabob said...

"Some busybody business professor named Susan Feinberg ..."

She isn't even a professor. She is an assistant professor. An academic lightweight. One small step above an RA.

Her CV.

Patrick said...

Feinberg has some issues probably mental. Obama menus put this chowderhead ryan to shame.

What was feinberg doing at an expensive restaurant when she could have been working and sharing at a communal soup kitchen?

I suggest she was just interested in random violence and used this as an outlet.

nevadabob said...

Susan Feinberg is one of the most overpaid public employees in Jew Nersey.

As an associate professor of economics at Rutgers, we are paying her $1.6 million every 10 years in salary alone.

At a time of increasing pressure on poor people and governments talking about cutting Social Security, can we really afford to give assistant professors $1.6 million tax dollars? Shouldn't Susan Feinberg give back some of her salary? Aren't we all supposed to SHARE in the sacrifice?

How much was her RAISE last year? Of our tax dollars. That could have gone to Social Security or health care?

Carol_Herman said...

Oh, yeah. I'd also want the cork!

Trooper York said...

$350 is a quite reasonable price for a high end wine. In fact it is very reasonable for a tony restaurant where you are trying to impress someone. I am always in charge of ordering the wine when we go out with other people as I have a pretty good handle on prices and what wine would be appropriate.

Mainly because I like to read “The Wine Spectator” on the toilet.

fivewheels said...

I don't know if you all noticed this nuance, but Ryan didn't order the wine and didn't necessarily want it. The other guys ordered it and thought it would be fine to pay for it, but because of congressional rules on accepting gifts, Ryan figured he needed to pay for it.

Which recalculates pretty much everything about the story, as far as decadence and atmospherics and all that, at least to the fair-minded.

Trooper York said...

In some high end restaurants they don’t even put the price on the wine list. Just a description. I was in a joint in the Bellagio where they pulled this. One of the husbands insisted on looking at list and pronounced he liked one particular vintage. No price of course. I looked at it and said “Well that’s at least $1,500 a bottle dude.”

He shit himself right there at the table.

And he wasn’t even reading “The Wine Spectator” at the time.

Dustin said...

It's just a clumsy version of Alinksy's Rule 4. They want to suggest conservative leaders are horrible if they have luxuries, and liberals are worldly if they have luxuries. Al Gore's mansion by the ocean, etc etc.

If you're a conservative, you are not allowed to have children, be black, gay, have a nice car, SUV, secrets, etc. If you're a liberal, it's oppression to even discuss those details.

They think this is clever, but they wind up looking pathetic because this country isn't as stupid as democrats think. This story makes Ryan look incredibly... normal, and opposed by assholes.

David said...

The point of being a liberal is that "caring for the downtrodden" excuses any amount of excess is your personal life. Just think about Al Gore and any random Hollywood star.

This is also why it never matters when liberal solutions only make things worse. The point isn't to solve problems, the point is to care about them.

Alex said...

$350/bottle is nothing. I've heard Michael Savage talk about $2-3K/bottle for the really high end stuff. I don't get what is the taste difference between that and a $20 bottle, but who am I to judge?

Alex said...

Now there definitely is a difference between cheap swill and $15/bottle wines. That's a far bigger difference then between the 15 and 100.

nevadabob said...

"If she drank half a bottle of wine (3 to 4 glasses) in the amount of time it takes to eat a meal (approximately one hour) then she was almost surely legally too drunk to drive when she assaulted the Congressman."

Republican Congressman have to start CALLING THE SECRET SERVICE when they are accosted by drunk assistant professors.

How many Congressmen have to be shot in the face like Gabby Giffords before Republicans will begin to take their security to heart and start calling the Secret Service to investigate these hate-filled hostile Democrats?

You can report the reprehensible behavior of this government employee to her boss at Rutgers University.

His name is Glen Shafer.

You can email him at gshafer@business.rutgers.ed

Or, you can call Mr. Shafer to express your outrage at the unethical behavior of his employee by dialing 973-353-1604.

Susan Feinberg has soiled the reputation of Rutgers University by creating animosity between the school and the United States Congress, which funds a large portion of university expenses through federal grants and appropriations.

Feinberg is in serious violation of the Rutgers Code of Ethics, specifically the section dealing with the loss of public trust: "University governors, trustees, officers, faculty or staff members shall not knowingly act in any way that might reasonably be expected to create the
impression or suspicion among the public having knowledge of his or her acts that he or she might be or may be engaged in conduct violative of his or her trust as a University governor, trustee, officer, faculty or staff member.

Accosting members of Congress while drunk, in public, is a serious ethics violation that Susan Feinberg needs to be held account to.

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

She lives in a glass house, and all her friends and colleagues live in a glass house. And she throws a stone.

Real smart economist there...

Alex said...

She lives in a glass house, and all her friends and colleagues live in a glass house. And she throws a stone.

Not really. The latest meme is that it's ok to indulge in luxuries as long as you support the welfare state as is.

Carol_Herman said...

If Feinberg and her husband want to go back to this restaurant, she'll have to don Groucho Marx glasses. And, her husband will have to keep his chest poofed out, so he can wear one of her dresses. They can call themselves the Cru's.

But if the disguises don't work? I don't think they'll get seated.

What does "86" mean in the restaurant business?

Fr Martin Fox said...

Garage:

The fact that I contribute something to someone's pay does not give me any say on how they spend their pay.

> I eat at a restaurant and I pay the waitress. I don't get to complain that she spends her money supporting Obama.

> I buy groceries at the store. I don't get to knock on the door of the manager's house, to see how much he spent on his furniture.

You don't like Rep. Ryan. Fine. But how he spends his paycheck is his business. Period.

Other than Garage's utterly predictable reaction (how many knee replacements have you been through, Garage?), is anyone else really upset about this?

nevadabob said...

" ... is anyone else really upset about this?"

You're goddamned right I'm upset.

Here we have a government employee who we pay too much to acting unethically in accosting a United States Congressman while drunk in public (which is a crime in New Jersey).

Susan Feinberg violated the Rutgers Code of Ethics when she attacked this Congressman and then further stalkedand spied on this Congressman by reporting on his activities to her friends at Talking Points Memo.

Ms. Feinberg is in violation of the code of ethics that governs assistant professors of economics at Rutgers and the University had better yank her fucking leash before they find their $2 billion a year in federal funding goes fucking - p o o f -.

Fr Martin Fox said...

My problem with Congress is not how much they get paid. I'd be delighted to increase their pay to the sky if it meant cutting the budget. Here's my budget-control remedy:

For successful vote to cut $1 Billion from the budget (i.e., it has to pass and be signed into law, and it has to be a net cut), each Congressman gets a cash bonus: say $10,000. Tax free! Paid upon enactment.

Save $100 Billion? Pay each of them $1 million, total tab $535 million; save $1 trillion? Total payout $53.5 billion. A bargain! We can even give each of them naming rights for a park, a federal building and a highway.

They only get to do it once; I'm not stupid.

Kevin said...

Tuition plus room and board are: $23,466 for a New Jersey resident and $35,222 for a non-resident.

Jesus, Feinberg's "Love and Money" course is even more Mickey-mouse than I thought.

The flyer:

LOVE MONEY
How will you manage your life after college?
A BRAND NEW COURSE open to all Rutgers Newark undergraduates teaches skills in personal finance and life. Features top professional guest speakers.
▶ Personal financial planning ▶ Investment strategies —
turning money into wealth
▶ NEGOTIATING an apartment lease...a car purchase...your job salary
▶ The right way to pay off your college loans
▶ How to achieve work-life balance
▶ How to prepare for major life changes — career, love & family
This course is a New 3-credit elective offered in the Management and Global Business Department
Spring 2008: MW 4:00–5:20 and MW 5:30–6:50 Course #: 620:485
Students should contact their Academic Advisor to find out how this course can fulfill a business school or general education requirement.
---

You pay an appreciable fraction of $23-35k annual tuition for this tripe? This is a college course?

Alex said...

The optics on this are horrible. Especially as Ryan goes out on townhall meetings lecturing people on austerity.

Trooper York said...

If you want a tip from someone who drinks wine with every dinner I would recommend a nice dry Sangiovese from Tuscany. My absolute favorite is Santa Cristina which has become a particularly common wine in many Italian restaurants who want great quality for a nice price. The newer vintage has a fresh fruity and earthy flavor of strawberry and a little spiciness. Older vintages will take on oaky, even tarry, flavors when aged in barrels.

A 2009 will run you about $21 in a reasonably priced joint. You should realize that the rule in most bars and restaurants is the price of a glass should be the price of a bottle. In NYS with all of our liquor taxes this will run you about $12 but in Florida I got if for about $8 and it will be the best bottle of wine you can get for the price.

Perfect for meat dishes and pasta as it will not overwhelm or be overwhelmed by spicy foods.

We had it on Thursday when I had a fresh Tagliatelle in black squid sauce with some fresh summer vegetables. It was superb.

Old Dad said...

Silly, stupid, rude, lefty dumbass...that's Garage. Add nosey to the list for Feinberg.

Carol_Herman said...

For people that don't know this; DC is basically a democratic town. As soon as Eisenhower left, the democrats came in, and bought residential property. In Georgetown.

Still, the restaurant business in DC is a good! Lots of people dine out!

It's very bad news, however, when a celebrity can't dine there, safely. Half the fun of eating in swell places is to recognize the "in" crowd.

I'll bet there are now other restaurants who have put the Feinberg's on their "no fly" list.

This list also includes those who pay with phony credit cards. And, counterfeit money.

The black population lives within its ghetto. One wall of this fortress is the freeway that cuts the ghetto off.

And, then I read someplace that most of the black kids couldn't even find the the mall. They don't step outside of the ghetto's borders.

And, no. DC is not like other places. In most other places, when you're dining at an expensive restaurant, you're not rubbing shoulders with democrats. For that? You probably have to bowl. Where bowling is your favorite sport.

Donald Sensing said...

"What hackery from the once-respectable Talking Points Memo!"

Wait! You mean that TPM was once respectable?

David said...

Bistro Bis has a business model Feinberg should praise--moderately expensive food, very expensive wines. It's a good profit generator, especially on a place like Capitol Hill. Not for the struggling middle class, for sure.

Feinberg's dinner for two with her hubby probably was $175-225 if they bought from the middle pricing on the wine list. That is a bit out of working class levels too.

Professor Feinberg is an associate professor at Rutgers. Nice academic background, a few years in France with a couple of ad agencies (she speaks French) mixed reviews on the teacher rating sites but nothing terrible.

Her courses definitely do not involve a lot of heavy lifting. Big surveys, lots of guest speakers, lots of powerpoint, multiple choice exams.

She commutes 2 days a week to Rutgers from her home in Washington on the federally subsidized choo-choo that Amtrak runs. She also gets paid as a staff member of a Washington Journal. (I wonder if she deducts the train commute from her income tax? That would be a no-no but I bet she does.) She probably makes $100k a year and who knows what hubby makes.

They are not hurting, and she at least is not under much pressure to perform or lose her job.

All in all a pretty cushy well compensated and lush (by the standard she applied to Ryan) life. She got there by academic smarts, a good education and certainly some hard work at some point. But no longer. She's coasting, while Paul Ryan is trying to solve the most important and difficult problem our country has.

Who would you choose to have dinner with at Bistro Bis?

Alex said...

Here's a good comment from TPM:

Ryan's Winegate is just another incident that shows how people are continuing to clarify what it is about our current political situation that they don't like and that they want changed. It's not Marxism. It's Populism. It's people coming to fully realize that their elected officials are no longer aware of people's needs and possibly even bought off (not even bought off in an evil way, just a slow warming and happy loyalty toward hedge fund managers and whoever else is buying fancy wine, dinners, tickets, and gifts for them). Even little things like a couple bottles of very expensive wine can become symbolic of deeper issues and a catalyzing and clarifying moment.

Catalyzing and clarifying moment. Just think about that and shudder for the implications for 2012.

Trooper York said...

Another top notch varietal sangiovese is "Il Bastardo" which can run you under $10 a bottle even in NYC. It is a high quality great drinking table wine. Highly recommended by your pal Trooper York.

Alex said...

David - you are missing the larger point. Ryan goes around preaching austerity while drinking $350 bottles of wine. It's a true "let them eat cake" moment. The optics are devastating to the GOP. There is no way to spin our way out of it. I'm predicting a Dem tsunami in 2012.

David said...

I actually find her love and money class to be an interesting idea. A lot of college kids could use this kind of course. But it hardly is a high level exercise, and she is so far out of Paul Ryan's league that she can get his games on cable.

Lower mid level academic gets 15 minutes of fame (by calling some idiot blogger.) Big deal.

David said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Revenant said...

[Feinberg] approached the table and asked Ryan "how he could live with himself" sipping expensive wine while advocating for cuts to programs for seniors and the poor.

The strange thing is that Feinberg's question actually makes sense to some people. Weird, eh?

Trooper York said...

If you want to stray away from you normal merlot’s and cabs I would also highly recommend you get into Rioja’s which are superb Spanish wines in which you can get a great buy for under $10 a bottle. I am particularly fond of Marques de Caceres Crianza Rioja which I serve with manchego and olives and salami in the backyard for an appetizer before we enjoy some fresh grilled meats and fish. A great table wine at an exceptional reasonable price.

mike said...

"What hackery from the once-respectable Talking Points Memo!"---If this is the best these people can come up with, then they are serious trouble in 2012. Ryan is a Republican, which means he's has no problem with people spending their own money for things they want. It's the Democrats who are "do as I say, not as I do" when it comes to their enormous wealth. Seriously, if this is the best these people can do, then they are in serious trouble in 2012.

Chuck66 said...

Will somebody give Alex some attention. He/she is trying so hard to get a reaction.

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