AMERICA IS MORE HAWKISH THAN BUSH [Rod Dreher]
According to this Newsweek poll, support for war on Iraq is strong, while approval of the Bush administration's handling of the situation is decreasing. It's time to do this damn thing.
Posted at 08:42 PM
SCHOOL MEALS [Andrew Stuttaford]
The Telegraph story also casts a light on another topic, school meals, rarely a subject for nostalgia back in the UK. I can still remember those days of liver and bacon, served tepid and gray with a collapsing boiled potato or two for variety and excitement.
Read then these words from a spokesman for local government in Wakefield quoted in the Telegraph:
"Each term we try to come up with a menu which encourages children to think about different issues. This Easter term we chose information technology and did not even consider putting hot cross buns on the menu."
A menu designed to influence children to think about information technology?
Chips with everything, I suppose.
Posted at 08:32 PM
CROSS ABOUT HOT CROSS BUNS [Andrew Stuttaford]
Hot cross buns are a traditional Easter-time treat in England, traditionally served on Good Friday. They are slightly sweet, emblazoned with a cross and best served hot with a little butter. Unfortunately, that pesky cross is worrying some local authorities over in the UK. The Sunday Telegraph is reporting that schools in a number of regions have been ordered not to serve the buns this Easter lest they “offend” children of a non-Christian faith. It’s yet another reminder that 'diversity' means nothing of the sort.
To its credit, the Muslim Council of Britain has called the decision “very, very bizarre”. One of its spokesmen is quoted by the Telegraph as follows:
"This is absolutely amazing. At the moment, British Muslims are very concerned about the upcoming war with Iraq and are hardly going to be taken aback by a hot cross bun…Unfortunately actions like this can only create a backlash and it is not very thoughtful. I wish they would leave us alone. We are quite capable of articulating our own concerns and if we find something offensive, we will say so. We do not need to rely on other people to do it for us…British Muslims have been quite happily eating and digesting hot cross buns for many years and I don't think they are suddenly going to be offended."
Posted at 08:27 PM
MADNESS [Andrew Stuttaford]
Seen in my local supermarket: vegetarian buffalo wings.
Posted at 04:43 PM
FOR THE RECORD [Jonah Goldberg]
Unless another shoe drops, I've decided to leave the Smart family alone. I think they're odd and the story is bizarre, but these things are dwarfed against the backdrop of the monumental fact they've been without their daughter for 10 months and they deserve the benefit of the doubt.
Posted at 03:56 PM
A FOREIGN FIELD [Andrew Stuttaford]
Here’s a story that could (I thought) only be explained by being dated April 1. It wasn’t – and the Congresswoman should be ashamed of herself.
As to her suggestion that these American dead are not currently buried in “patriotic” soil, Rep. Brown-Waite needs to read these words by Rupert Brooke. Brooke, an English poet who died whilst on active service during World War I, had this to say about the last resting place of a soldier killed overseas. He was writing, of course, about an English soldier rather than an American, but the truth of his words is not confined to any one nationality:
“If I should die, think only this of me:
That there’s some corner of a foreign field
That is for ever England. There shall be
In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England’s, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home.”
Posted at 02:13 PM
A PHENOMENAL CAREER SUICIDE [Rod Dreher]
This Dixie Chicks thing is getting very, very serious for the group. Mind you, I'm not a big one for boycotts; if I threw away CDs of artists whose politics I couldn't stand off my shelf, there'd be very little left to listen to (a reader wrote to say she'd taken her child to hear the great kids' musician Dan Zanes play recently, and he shared his anti-war politics with preschoolers. Asinine!). However, I completely understand country fans wanting to rebuke severely the Dixie Chicks for that disgraceful comment Natalie Maines made on foreign soil. This thing is turning into something huge. Read what reader Dave in Georgia wrote to me this morning:
Here in the Red Zone, the imminent demise of the Dixie Chicks is a topic of
This thing is turning into a phenomenal case of career suicide. What on earth could Natalie Maines have been thinking, saying such an idiotic thing, given her fan base? Can anybody think of a similar case of a popular performer collapsing professionally virtually overnight because of something he or she said?
Posted at 02:09 PM
FRIENDS OF CHIRAC [Andrew Stuttaford]
The London Independent is reporting that hundreds of members of Mugabe’s youth militia are fleeing to South Africa. Their complaint? They are tired of “killing for nothing”. Mugabe, readers will remember, was recently welcomed to Paris by Jacques Chirac.
Yes, by that same Jacques Chirac, who is (according to Le Figaro) a “a white knight of peace, a champion of all the oppressed of the Earth.”
Posted at 02:08 PM
FOR A LAUGH [Jonah Goldberg]
Check out the anti-war protestors on C-SPAN. It's ANSWER again.What a bunch of clowns.
Posted at 01:58 PM
OY VEY [Rod Dreher]
Who needs a red heifer when you have the Talking Carp of the Apocalypse?
Posted at 01:46 PM
THE PRICE OF DELAY [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Jonathan Foreman on morale, from Kuwait.
Posted at 12:14 PM
OUCH [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Last time the New York Times gets an NSC scoop.
Posted at 11:43 AM
HASTERT HOPE [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Says we'll see U.S. troops in Iraq in days.
Posted at 09:15 AM
LET'S WALK [John J. Miller]
In the category of weird coincidences, the discovery of the world's oldest human footprints were announced the same week as the world's oldest wheel. They're about 345,000 years older.
Posted at 06:36 AM
LET'S ROLL [John J. Miller]
Archaeologists in Slovenia have discovered what they think may be the world's oldest wheel. "The wheel is surprisingly technologically advanced — much more so than the later models found in Switzerland and Germany," says one of the guys who found it. Does he mean to say it was round?
Posted at 06:34 AM
DON'T MESS WITH TEXAS, CONT'D [Rod Dreher]
My special correspondent on temporary assignment in the Lone Star State reports that all the country radio stations in Dallas, the Dixie Chicks' own hometown, have purged the peacenik trio from their playlists after being deluged by calls from angry listeners. My correspondent, a Dallasite to whom I'm married, can't imagine what got into those Texas girls, and blames Natalie Maines' "Hollywood second husband" for being a bad liberal influence on her. Maybe the poor Maines girl just isn't getting enough Dr Pepper.
Posted at 01:33 AM
Friday, March 14, 2003
BLEG UPDATE [Jonah Goldberg]
Great stuff coming in. One clarification: I'm particularly looking for quotes -- the more famous/prominent the better -- which talk about challenging the racial or gender status quo. Blah blah blah
Posted at 06:58 PM
BLEG: SILLY QUOTES SEARCH [Jonah Goldberg]
It's late on Friday, but if anybody can help with this I'd appreciate it. I'm looking for hardcore quotes from critial gender, critical race or other post modern types. Specifically, I'm looking for stuff about the need to "smash the dominant gender paradigm" or "transcend the patriarchal white male" blah blah. The more esoteric and impenetrable the academese the better. The only thing is it's got to be real and from a confirmable source. I'll explain all later. Thanks
Posted at 06:19 PM
THE MOVEMENT BUILDS [Jonah Goldberg]
From a reader:
Posted at 06:02 PM
BUMPED! [Jonah Goldberg]
Bush's fancypants war summit in the Azores has bumped my regular Sunday gig. I'm delighted to have a free Sunday, but that shouldn't stop any of you with free time on your hands to vent your righteous anger at CNN for bumping me. If they don't think I'm missed they may stop appreciating me.
Posted at 05:43 PM
PRINT-ON-DEMAND PUBLISHING--MY REPORT [John Derbyshire]
Many, many thanks to all who responded on this. Numerous readers said: "I don't know squat about P.O.D., but will you please post whatever you find out, as I'm thinking of doing a book myself." OK, here you go. (1) Nobody reported having been blatantly ripped off. All the P.O.D. firms seem able and willing to do what they say they will do. However (2) it's like having a contractor in your house. He's not likely to subject you to a bold-faced ripoff; but if you don't watch him like a hawk, he will very likely goof off or screw up somehow. **Keep your eye on them.** (2) The largest number of happy customers seem to be for iuniverse.com. Nobody expressed serious dissatisfaction with this firm, though always bearing in mind my point (2). Two different people expressed surprise at iuniverse.com's low prices, a thing no-one said about any of the other outfits. They definitely seem to give most bang for the buck. (4) 1stbooks.com also got good reports, though some customers thought it was pricey. (5) Xlibris, who did my blockbuster (shall we soon be saying "MOAB"?) novel FIRE FROM THE SUN, came in 3rd. (6) Booklocker.com got an honorable mention from a reader who had not actually used them, but heard a good report second hand. (7) Don't even THINK of submitting anything produced by any word processor but MS Word. All P.O.D. outfits want MS Word documents, though some forget to tell you this. (8) As with your home improvements, you can do the thing yourself. However, this involves you in some capital expenditure, and (my impression is) a lengthy and time-consuming learning curve. (9) Regardless of satisfaction with the production services, most responders thought that the "marketing services" that P.O.D. publishers provide are wellnigh worthless. For marketing, you are on your own.
Posted at 05:42 PM
TALKING TO MEL [< href="mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org">Kathryn Jean Lopez]
If you get EWTN, Raymond Arroyo interviews Mel Gibson this week. Runs Friday night and reruns Sunday. Eventually winds up on the net, I think. (You can watch EWTN online, too.
Posted at 05:25 PM
PLURALISM, SHMURALISM. YOU'RE CRAZY [Jonah Goldberg]
Saudi Arabia says anyone who thinks there will ever be a Church in his country is a fanatic.
Posted at 05:15 PM
IF YOU HAVE TO ASK [Rod Dreher]
Going through all the France e-mail, I was gratified that about 90 percent of it was favorable. But there was a robust minority of the "if you love it so much, then move there, traitor" variety. Two separate e-mails asked a slight variation of this question: "What makes you think food, wine and pretty women have anything to do with the quality of a culture?" And I'm thinking, Baby, if you have to ask...
Posted at 03:48 PM
JED BABBIN ON AIR [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Jed Babbin, an NRO contributor, is Ollie North's backup. Col. North is in Kuwait and so Jed is on the air 2-6 weekdays. You can listen online here.
Posted at 03:33 PM
CORNER GETS RESULTS? [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
An e-mailer: "Kathryn, I blame you! For the past week, or a little longer, the female anchors on FOX News have been wearing PANTS! Now I don't watch more than a couple of hours a day, a few days a week but I have noticed a change."
Posted at 03:31 PM
NO MORE OIL [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
After liberation, France and Russia get cut off.
Posted at 03:28 PM
JONAH, PACK YOUR BAGS [Rod Dreher]
This just in from NR's spy in Paris: "It will be my great pleasure to take Jonah and you out to dinner in Paris. I even know some places where good food is served and the staff supports America!" Now Rich, surely, surely you can spring for a three-day whirlwind cheese-eating surrender monkey tour of Paris for Jonah and me. Think of the Travel Diary we could file! We've already got one native confederate on the ground there, and he seems to know others. I smell journalism ... or is that just cassoulet?
Posted at 03:25 PM
GROUNDBREAKING [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Jim Moran has resigned as "regional whip." His statement:
"I stepped down from my leadership position today as a way to demonstrate acceptance of my responsibility for insensitive remarks I recently made."
Posted at 03:20 PM
PLUCKING THE DIXIE CHICKENS [Rod Dreher]
Whoa! Things are getting pretty hot for the Dixie Chicks over at a fan discussion website. I'm getting e-mails from Dixie Chicks fans who say they're so disgusted by Natalie Maines' diss of President Bush that they're either throwing out their Chicks discs, or (in one case) mailing them back to the record company. "I realize that they already have the royalties from the sales, but I will supremely enjoy the process," she writes. "I will also be enclosing a note that both my children were born in Texas, and I am proud that they share that with the president. The Chicks do have every right, as American citizens, to criticize this country and its president. And I, as a consumer, have every right to never purchase their music ever again!" A Massachusetts reader wrote to say he's now sworn off the Dixie Chicks. He explained that "among the reasons that I started listening to country music was the fact that, by and large, country performers tend to keep their big yaps shut on politics. On the occasion that they do shout out, they tend to say things I agree with (Charlie Daniels, G-d bless ya!)."
Posted at 02:36 PM
IT'S OFFICIAL [Stanley Kurtz]
Is it possible to have three biological parents? It is now. A lesbian couple from New Jersey have gotten both of their names listed on a baby’s birth certificate. And in this case, each partner has a biological tie to the child. The woman who carried the child had an egg implanted from her partner. The sperm donor was anonymous, but he is obviously a biological parent as well. As I showed in “Heather Has 3 Parents,” we will shortly see lesbian couples who conceive with non-anonymous male friends attempting to form triple parent families. That will open the door to group marriage. This latest step will only serve to hasten the inevitable.
Posted at 01:08 PM
MORE U.N. IRRELEVANCE [Stanley Kurtz]
The U.N. has now definitively shown its irrelevance, by failing to take action to disarm...Korea. Randall Parker’s ParaPundit blog, which I mentioned yesterday, picks up on a huge story that has gotten little play in the papers. China has acted to block the Security Council from taking up the matter of North Korea’s nuclear weapons program. This is very bad news. Many observers had hoped that China, on which the North Koreans are totally dependent, would bring pressure to bear on the North to disarm. There was some reason to hope that, despite their public reluctance to do so, the Chinese might be working to rein in the North Koreans behind the scenes. But by taking a leaf from France’s book at the U.N., the Chinese are now showing that they want no part of an effort to halt North Korea’s nuclear program. Will economic pressures from the U.S. bring the Chinese around? I doubt it. If the Chinese don’t want to police the North Koreans, anything we force the Chinese to do will be half hearted and ineffective. The Korean crisis grows.
Posted at 01:06 PM
RE: BLIX [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Imagine for a second if Al Gore were president.
Posted at 01:05 PM
FREE TIBET DAY [John Derbyshire]
Last Saturday was Free Tibet Day, and there was a march in London. (Thanks to the China e-lobby for this, and for their continuing excellent coverage of events in China, the occupied nations, and North Korea. To sign up for their bulletins, email email@example.com.)
Posted at 01:00 PM
COMPLETELY HOPELESS [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Hans Blix MTV interview:
Norris: Speaking of multilateralism, do you notice, as many have suggested, that there's an increasing unilateralist bent in the United States government? Blix: Yeah. On big issues like war in Iraq, but in many other issues they simply must be multilateral. There's no other way around. You have the instances like the global warming convention, the Kyoto protocol, when the U.S. went its own way. I regret it. To me the question of the environment is more ominous than that of peace and war. We will have regional conflicts and use of force, but world conflicts I do not believe will happen any longer. But the environment, that is a creeping danger. I'm more worried about global warming than I am of any major military conflict.
Posted at 12:55 PM
RAPID RESPONSE [Jonah Goldberg]
Seth Gitell on "Bush's Mideast Misfire."
Posted at 12:30 PM
GET SMART [Jonah Goldberg]
Admittedly I can't count the emails I don't receive, but so far lots of readers think this smart thing is a lot fishier than appearances and appearances are pretty darn fishy.
A typical email from a reader:
Posted at 12:17 PM
RE: THE PALESTINIAN CARD [Jonah Goldberg]
A journalist/Corner reader responds to my "The Palestinian Card" post:
Sure, sure, we all think "Iraq" (I say the word when I'm asked what I'm having for dinner), BUT the Palestinian legislative council is expected to confirm their PM as early as Monday, and senior admin officials who briefed a handful of reporters said they wanted to weigh in before the meeting without appearing to dictate to the Palestinians whom they should pick. They seemed pretty upbeat about the reforms there, and want to keep the incentive structure alive to affect choices by the Palestinians (and the Europeans, who for all their knee-jerk anti-Israel crap have also been pushing for Pal. reforms for some time). So yeah, the announcement is tied to Iraq. But the substance is tied to the events on the ground....
Posted at 12:00 PM
I FELL FOR IT [Jonah Goldberg]
From a reader:
Want to hire a stranger in a giant bunny suit to fix your toilet? I'll gladly dress up in a giant bunny suit (even pink) and fix your toilet for free. It should be noted that I have zero experience working on toilets. If you're worried that I'm some crazed stalker who dresses in giant bunny suits and offers free plumbing work to pundits; fear not, I'm really only offering my services because I'm hoping you'll post this in the corner.
Posted at 11:56 AM
MORE FROG TREACHERY AT NRO [Rod Dreher]
K-Lo, you'd better watch it, or I'll have Julie make her amazing cassoulet, which will further wear down your resistance to all things French. I am pleased to say that my Texas-born bride is a descendant of Claude-Joseph de Lisle Rouget, who wrote the French national anthem. He was actually a monarchist who refused to swear allegiance to the revolutionary regime. History is full of ironies, innit? I've always thought that strictly on artistic terms, the French have the most stirring national anthem. The Star-Spangled Banner will always move me like no other, of course, but the Marseillaise is pretty great. I confess my prejudice comes from repeated viewings of The Grand Illusion and Casablanca, in which the singing of the Marseillaise plays a triumphal, anti-German role in the stories.
And my son loves both President Bush and The Aristocats. His Franco-Texan sensibilities are developing nicely. He freaked out with joy on the phone last week when I told him that President Bush is from Texas. Julie's down in Dallas with him visiting the grandparents, and they took him last weekend to the Alamo, which he knew all about thanks to Bill Bennett's wonderful storybook for kids. Walking into the old fort, he said, apropos of nothing, "I hate the Mexican army." He's three and a half. Julie said his chin trembled and his eyes filled with tears when he stood before the relic case, looking at Jim Bowie's knife. A few months back, when he was obsessed with the Alamo story and demanded to have it read to him over and over, we heard him crying upstairs in bed. Julie ran up to check on him, and came down saying, "He tells me he's afraid he won't remember the Alamo." Now, if kids' music genius Dan Zanes , who makes the best records for children, would come out with a Texas swing version of La Marseillaise, I think the boy would reach nirvana.
Posted at 11:35 AM
THE PALESTINIAN CARD [Jonah Goldberg]
This sounds like a whole new strategy for garnering support for war on Iraq. I'm all for a peaceful settlement between Israel and the Palestinians, including a Palestinian state. If rolling out the plan for doing that now makes sense from where Blair and Bush are sitting, so be it. But it's hard to believe the timing has to do with anything but garnering support for invading Iraq. Very interesting to hear what the French say next.
Posted at 11:14 AM
SUSPICIOUS [Andrew Stuttaford]
Kathryn, I'd be very careful before you call Ridge. After all, you recognized that the language being spoken was French. Are you now, or have you ever been, a francophone?
Posted at 11:04 AM
IT WAS BOUND TO HAPPEN [Jonah Goldberg]
Yesterday, responses to my column were 95% pro, 4% critical but friendly and 1% anti-Semitic bile. Alas, as the column has been sent around the web -- and the mouth breathers have finally finished reading it -- the nasty stuff is coming in. I won't reprint it, but it continues to amaze me the number of people who feel like 6 million Jews was nothing but a good start. I wish I was exaggerating.
Posted at 10:48 AM
ED SMART [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Here's a little on the AMBER alerts and the weird media spectacle surrounding them since Elizabeth Smart was found.
Posted at 10:36 AM
RE: WHO DOES THIS? [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Rabbi Daniel Lapin had some very similar comments about the Danielle Van Damm case on NRO (here). Again, there was a drifter involved.
Posted at 10:29 AM
ANOTHER THING: DRIFTER V. HOMELESS [Jonah Goldberg]
Funny how people who are cuddly-wuddly victims of Reagan-Bush greed are called "homeless" but psychos who abduct little blond girls are called "drifters."
Posted at 10:18 AM
WHO DOES THIS? [Jonah Goldberg]
I know this is old news to those who followed the Smart case closely from the beginning. But this paragraph from the Washington Post stopped me in my tracks:
The ordeal actually began in November 2001, when Elizabeth's mother, Lois Smart, encountered a long-haired street prophet, in an ankle-length white robe, preaching the words of Jesus on a Salt Lake City sidewalk. She hired the drifter, who called himself Emmanuel, for a day's work repairing the roof of the Smart home.
I'm all for saving some cash, helping a guy down on his luck etc. But who hires a "street prophet" in an ankle length robe to do roof work? These people have young attractive daughters for Pete's sake. Maybe it's my jaded NYC upbringing, but jeez. Why not hire a stranger in a giant bunny suit to fix your toilet? Or maybe hire a naked guy in a trench coat to grout your tub?
Posted at 10:05 AM
I KID YOU NOT [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Someone at NR World Headquarters is 10 minutes into a phone conversation in FRENCH. FRENCH. FRENCH AT NR. Yesterday, one of our guys was interviewed by a French TV crew. I am calling Tom Ridge now.
Posted at 09:53 AM
EAT MEAT FOR PETA [Jonathan H. Adler]
Now this is a holiday I will really enjoy.
Posted at 08:47 AM
THE SUMMIT OPTION [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The president could travel overseas for some kind of summit in yet another "going the last mile" option.
Posted at 07:17 AM
"SHOCK AND AWE" [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Has nothing to do with once we get on the ground, but on this pre-movement dithering "diplomacy." How many times can a President Bush, Powell, Fleischer, Negroponte come out and say this is "the last mile," "time is running out"? I'm afraid they passed officially becoming meaningless a little bit back now.
Posted at 07:14 AM
TIME SENSITIVE BLEGGING [Jonah Goldberg]
I'm doing CNN in a little while. They will ask me what my choice for under-reported story of the week will be. It's sort of like Fox News Sunday's "Below the Fold." If you have a suggestion BEFORE 7:40 AM East Coast Time, please send it to me. After that, it's not worth it. The whole article in my email would be best, so I can be sure it's real and I know what I'm talking about (and some of you would-be Onion writers can't bamboozle me). Thanks.
Posted at 06:35 AM
Thursday, March 13, 2003
ONE WAY OR ANOTHER [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Will Saddam go first? (Well, not counting 9/11 and other attacks he may have sponsored.)
Posted at 08:55 PM
DUMB CLUCKS [Rod Dreher]
Natalie Maines, one of the Dixie Chicks said onstage in London the other day, "Just so you know, we're ashamed the President of the United States is from Texas." This, in front of foreigners, in wartime. This is disgraceful, and apparently people are letting the group know, prompting an explanation. The group's website, by way of justifying the insult, that "nothing more frightening than the notion of going to war with Iraq, and the prospect of all the innocent lives that will be lost." Nothing? Really? Where were you girls on 9/11/01? Not in downtown New York City, I'm betting. Have you forgotten?
Posted at 08:47 PM
WHILE FRIENDS IS ON... [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Excuse me for breaking the silence with another rather lame post, but I am going to take a moment to touch on a personal defense. The American Prospect's weblog is kind enough to keep regular tabs on me and has chosen a winner for the unofficial silliest-thing-Kathryn-Lopez-ever-said award. Now, I have said my share of silly things, but this one belongs nowhere near the top of the list. What I said was that I wished the word "abortion" weren't part of the partial-birth-abortion debate--because when people hear the word "abortion," they tune out. Most people already have settled opinions on abortion, but the procedure the Senate voted to abolish today is closer to clear-cut infanticide than to abortion--and should be opposed even by those who consider themselves "pro-choice" on abortion in general (indeed, many pro-choicers do oppose partial-birth abortion). Okay: The guys at The American Prospect read my post and concluded that because I don't like the word "abortion" in this context, I must be unaware that it was not Democrats or the media but pro-lifers themselves who coined the phrase "partial-birth abortion"; which means that I'm either an ignoramus or an opportunistic hack. Truth is: I have always disagreed with referring to what's an infanticide as an abortion. I have myself used the phrase "partial-birth abortion" over the years, because this has become the common way to refer to this practice. Should I reproach myself for this? Maybe. But on the issue of linguistic correctness, I think I have less to answer for than people who can look at a child halfway out of the womb being killed, and observe coolly that the phrase "partial birth abortion" has (Tapped's words) "no medical meaning whatsoever." I guess it depends on what the meaning of "medical" is.
Posted at 08:15 PM
POSTING LAME [John Derbyshire]
I'm sorry too. Got book review due tomorrow, need to do some reading. This author (Ross Terrill) has found the way to my heart: among the many authorities he quotes is ME. Think this'll be a good review?
Posted at 06:41 PM
RE: SORRY [Jonah Goldberg]
I apologize for not doing my share. That's what happens when I get up at 5:00 AM to write a G-File the same day my syndicated column is due.
Posted at 06:24 PM
SORRY [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
posting is lame today. it just is.
Posted at 05:53 PM
CUTE (AND DEPRESSING) [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
E-mailer sends this re Visa commercial:
actually, it's being replaced by one where george p. bush says that we're gonna attack iraq real soon now. and then, at the end of the commercial, there will be george h.w. bush.
Posted at 02:30 PM
SHEEN SHAME [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
They're are reports that Visa Checkcard pulled a Martin Sheen/Charlie Sheen ad because of complaints about Martin's opposition to the war. I support the president (Bush, not Bartlet) if we ever go into Iraq and I get tired of Sheen the Elder's moralizing, but that was a very funny commercial. Maybe I am just not a big boycotter. That's probably a fault.
Posted at 02:15 PM
I'M DELIGHTED [Jonah Goldberg]
That Elizabeth Smart has been found. And I have great sympathy for her family. But I get the sense her father is running for something. He pings my radar in a bad way. I hope I'm wrong.
Posted at 01:55 PM
AHEM--SORRY [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Sometimes this instant publishing thing gets you moving a tad too fast. Wasn't Ted Kennedy who abstained--even worse, he voted no. John Edwards, making presidential candidate number 2--was the third abstainer.
Posted at 01:53 PM
NICK DENTON SHOULD DO SOME HOMEWORK [Jonah Goldberg]
Blogger Nick Denton says Jewish liberals support the war more than most non-Jewish liberals. Since he says I obfuscate through statistics, I suppose he's got some evidence that this is true. It probably is, but I haven't seen any evidence of it. But when he says there would "hardly be any Jewish conservatives" if it "wasn't for Israel and the Middle East," he really shows he doesn't know what he's talking about. Among the 31 original names on the National Review masthead, at least five of them were Jewish. Irving Kristol and the rest of the original "neos" became anti-liberal before the founding of Israel. But virtually all of them moved to the Right because of their anti-Communism, not Israel. Why he thinks so many Jews became Republicans because of Israel is a mystery to me since the Republican Party and the conservatives generally were historically perceived to be less friendly to Israel than Democrats and Liberals. Seriously, I don't know what he's talking about and I'm not sure he does either.
Posted at 01:45 PM
DON'T MESS WITH LARRY [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Ann Curry tries to burst NRO's Larry Kudlow's optimistic bubble on The Today Show, citing evil tax cut.
Posted at 01:43 PM
ABSTAINING FROM MORALITY [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Three abstainers in the partial-birth abortion vote were Catholics: Joe Biden, Ted Kennedy, and John Kerry: all Catholics. Personally opposed, publicly representing who? Abortionists?
Posted at 01:07 PM
VERIFY [Stanley Kurtz ]
The real problem in dealing with North Korea is verification. How can we verify an agreement without gaining access to North Korea’s vast web of secret underground military facilities? But the North Koreans will never agree to that. Unless and until the Democrats can explain how a workable and verifiable agreement with the North Koreans might be achievable, their attacks on the president amount to nothing more than irresponsible, politically motivated, carping.
Posted at 01:02 PM
NO GOOD SOLUTION [Stanley Kurtz ]
The biggest reason for the obscurity of our policy on North Korea, however, is that there is no good solution to the problem. The Democrats have been downright irresponsible here–refusing to lay out a realistic policy option of their own. Josh Marshall and the rest of the Democrat chorus keep calling for negotiations, yet they fail to confront the barriers. Marshall want us to agree to agree to bilateral negotiations with the North Koreans to “test their openness” to a resolution of the crisis. Test their openness? Sure, the North Koreans are open to more bribes and security guarantees. But the North Koreans are also open to continuing secret work on their nuclear program, despite any paper agreements.
Posted at 01:01 PM
UH OH [Jonah Goldberg]
A UN weapons inspectorhas been killed in Iraq. So far, it sounds like an accident.
Posted at 01:01 PM
ABOUT THE SILENCE [Stanley Kurtz ]
According to Josh Marshall, my saying that the administration’s relative silence on North Korea may be part of a conscious hawkish policy simply twists the administration’s confusion into something that seems more well thought out than it is. Marshall notes that the manifest infighting between administration hawks and doves shows that our relative silence is really confusion and paralysis. It’s true that the administration is internally divided on North Korea. But that is something I noted in “The Other Imminent Danger.” Certainly, that internal division is part of the reason it’s been tough to read our policy. Yet the administration’s internal policy divisions don’t change the fact that the influence of the hawks would tend to push the administration toward relative silence and obfuscation on this issue. Surely that has played a role in the president’s efforts to play down the conflict.
Posted at 01:00 PM
NORTH KOREA TALK [Stanley Kurtz ]
Josh Marshall has a piece out today criticizing the president’s Korea policy, or lack thereof. Marshall’s piece, which takes a swipe at me, is part and parcel of a unified attempt by the Democrats to blame president Bush for the mess in Korea (a mess that can be laid at the door of the Democrats, if anyone). See also this piece by New Republic editor Peter Beinart, which highlights the same passage that Marshall takes from my article, “The Other Imminent Danger.” In that passage, I note that our apparent lack of policy on North Korea may in fact be something else: “...if our policy is to strike when we may and must, silence makes a good deal of sense.”
Posted at 12:58 PM
NEXT FROM THE U.N.: EIGHT GLASSES OF WATER A DAY [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
EATING FRUITS AND VEGETABLES COULD REDUCE RISK OF VARIOUS CANCERS, UN REPORTS New York, Mar 13 2003 12:00PM A new scientific review by the United Nations health agency has revealed that eating fruits and vegetables may lower the risk of cancer, particularly those in the gastrointestinal tract.
“In many studies, there is a fairly consistent association of higher levels of fruits and vegetables intake with some reduction in cancer risk,” said Paul Kleihues, Director of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) International Agency of Research on Cancer (IARC), which coordinates and conducts research on the causes of human cancer and develops strategies for cancer control.
Posted at 12:52 PM
D'OH! [Jonah Goldberg]
I called Mike Gerson -- all-powerful, Christian, presidential speech writer for George Bush -- "Mark Gerson" in my column today. Mark Gerson wrote a book about neocons which I reviewed (a bit negatively) for the Wall Street Journal about 7 years ago. See? Those neocons do get into everything. Anyway, it's been fixed and my apologies to Mike, Mark and all other Gersons everywhere.
Posted at 12:45 PM
DO WE WANT YOU? [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Do you have hard-core programming experience in ASP scripting using SQL databases? NRO may be looking for you for some serious consulting. If you are interested and qualify (you know who you are), please email firstname.lastname@example.org. And if you have no idea what any of that means, read David Frum's diary(belatedly up on the homepage--my fault, not David's) and Ramesh Ponnuru on deficits, up in a minute or two.
Posted at 12:14 PM
PRINT ON DEMAND [John Derbyshire]
I am contemplating another P.O.D. venture. (That is, "print on demand"--the modern form of vanity publishing.) I did one before via the P.O.D. firm Xlibris http://www.olimu.com/FireFromSun/FireFromSun.htm . It wasn't a sensationally bad experience, but I think I'd like to try a different P.O.D. firm this time. Any readers who have had HAPPY expeiences with a P.O.D. firm, please email & tell me about it (email@example.com). If you don't mind, I'd like to know how much the venture cost you. My idea is to do a collection of my pieces. Of the hundreds of essays, reviews & fragments of fugitive journalism I've done these past few years, there's a handful I'd like to gather together & preserve in some format more durable than pixels. When I mentioned this to a publisher the other day, he ran for the elevator. Publishers hate that kind of thing--no market for it. Fine, but I'd like to do it anyway. All suggestions gratefully received.
Posted at 11:52 AM
PIRGS [Jonah Goldberg]
Wow. I'm not sure I've ever seen an email response quite like this. In the last twenty minutes or so, I've received some two dozen emails about my PIRG post. Virtually each one begins with some version of "Where have you been?" Or "Dude, this has been going on for a long time" or, most common, "When I was in college...." Apparently this goes on at dozens -- hundreds? -- of schools and has been for decades. I knew the PIRGs played these games but I had no idea it'd been going on for so long and in so many places. Message received.
Posted at 11:49 AM
THE JEWS [Jonah Goldberg ]
The G-File is up.
Posted at 11:00 AM
PBA [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The partial-birth-abortion ban just passed the Senate.
Posted at 10:27 AM
I MISSPELLED ROLE [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
In my Blair post. It's not the first Corner typo, alas. And it won't be the last.
Posted at 10:22 AM
JUST IMAGINE [Jonah Goldberg]
If YAF or Eagle Forum or Ward Connerly's outfit tried something like this. A college deducts contributions to Naderite groups straight out of your tuition.
Posted at 10:17 AM
"ONLY 3,000" [John J. Miller]
K Lo, re: the partial-birth abortion numbers, I wonder if anybody has ever said terrorists killed "only" 3,000 people on September 11. I suppose some have, but in the sense that we're lucky there weren't more deaths--and certainly not in the sense that the injury done to them and our country wasn't enormous.
Posted at 09:36 AM
WORSE THAN WE KNOW? [Stanley Kurtz]
Randall Parker runs a military and foreign policy blog called ParaPundit. I always find it useful, and Parker has been kind enough to link to my stuff–especially on the difficult topic of bringing democracy to the Muslim world. The other day, Parker had a useful post noting that Iraq may be closer to nuclear weapons than we think. Doves especially have been saying that, despite the probable existence of chemical and biological weapons, at least the inspections have Saddam’s nuclear program in check. And doves also claim that Saddam’s bomb making capability is still too far away to fear. On the contrary, we have good reason to fear, not only that Saddam is close to nukes, but even that much can be going on under the eyes of the inspectors. ParaPundit has gathered together some good material on this issue.
Posted at 09:03 AM
THE JEWS [Jonah Goldberg]
That's what today's G-File is about and will be up soon. I'm off to walk the dog, which isn't a euphemism for anything.
Posted at 08:55 AM
METAPHOR WATCH [John Derbyshire]
"One by one the graphite rods of restraint will be removed from the nuclear pile of the Labour Party, and the whole thing could go critical."---Boris Johnson in this morning's Daily Telegraph, writing about Tony Blair's multiplying problems with his own party. It was Boris Johnson who, a few days ago, was telling us that Iraq is a pimple we have to squeeze. A little more tonic in the G&T there, Boris.
Posted at 08:40 AM
DERB, BORIS & THE NECESSITIES [John Derbyshire]
Thanks to all who responded to this challenging post. I now know more than I ever wanted to know about the Sorority Dorm Phenomenon. There are doors Man was never meant to open.
Posted at 08:39 AM
ANOTHER EX-PREZ GETS IN THE WAY [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Bill Clinton publicly tells the president how to do his job, again.
Posted at 08:32 AM
BLAIR’S LEADERSHIP [Kathryn Jean Lopez ]
It would be a shame if Tony Blair winds up having to back out of a front-and-center roll in this war, for not only current diplomatic reasons but world history reasons. He was on the right side, and a leader at that, and the books should be able to note that prominently.
Posted at 08:26 AM
THE BLIX FRENCH CONNECTION [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
It’s not just the stuff of conspiracy theories.
Posted at 08:25 AM
THIS IS NOT ABOUT ABORTION [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Maybe it’s duplicitous of me (though I don’t think it is), but I really wish partial-birth abortion was called something else. Like how the GOP indoctrinated us all to say death tax instead of estate tax. Fact is, most people know where they stand on abortion and so see no real need to pay attention to articles, debates, etc. on any type of abortion, any news, etc. If the media had any sympathy or understanding of the procedure we’re talking about with pba, maybe there would be an “infanticide” in the headline. Instead, it’s just another abortion, and pols get away with hiding under women’s rights and health and nonsense (N.B. actual women’s rights and health, for the record, is not nonsense—but partial-birth abortion is NOT about women’s rights and health and pretending it is is what is nonsense).
Posted at 07:30 AM
ONLY 3,000 [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
In a March 12 Hardball news report, David Shuster said: “partial-birth abortions are not used very often. Less than 3,000 times a year or about one-sixth of one percent of all abortions. “ It doesn’t take too long for the media to adjust. Not too long ago, partial-birth abortion was called a “rare” procedure—with under 1,000 as the going estimate. (The numbers of how many are performed each year come from what abortionists choose to report.) The latest reports--from the pro-abortion side, by the way--basically tripled the total performed; talk about something rare: that fact is rarely mentioned in news reports. And even if it is 3,000 a year--if it is barbaric, if it is infanticide, as a prominent Democrats among many others have called it, would it be less wrong and unworthy of us if there are “only” 3,000 seconds-away-from-coming-out-of-the-womb kids killed this way?
Posted at 07:29 AM
TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Richard Perle's suing over the Hersh story this week.
Posted at 05:37 AM
MOVING ON [John J. Miller]
Melissa Seckora has left National Review to become a reporter at The Hill, a newspaper that covers Congress. Her first story appeared yesterday on the front page, and it may be read here. You go, girl!
Posted at 05:31 AM
MAKING THIS EASIER [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Will Iraqi military just surrender?
Posted at 05:26 AM
VOTE COUNTING AT THE U.N. [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Looks like another resolution vote tomorrrow.
Posted at 05:24 AM
Wednesday, March 12, 2003
I SMELL MOVIE OF THE WEEK [Jonah Goldberg]
The Elizabeth Smart story could be getting even weirder.
Posted at 11:04 PM
THE BIG RIP [Jonah Goldberg]
Funny, when I was in college that phrase referred to something completely different.
Posted at 10:46 PM
THE BIG RIP [John Derbyshire]
Cosmologists not only think about the birth of the universe, but also about its death. The latest theory about the end of it all is called the Big Rip. In this scenario, around 22 billion years in the future, dark energy, which turns gravity into a repulsive force, tears everything apart. From the account in Science News: "A half hour before the end, Earth itself would fall apart. Finally, one ten-thousandth of a femtosecond before the Big Rip, molecules and atoms would break up..." [Note: a femtosecond is one-thousandth of one-trillionth of a second.] Something more to worry about.
Posted at 09:44 PM
EXCUSE ME WHILE I LEAVE TOWN [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
NYC antiwar resolution.
Posted at 07:29 PM
KINSLEY ON ANTI-SEMITISM [Ramesh Ponnuru]
Kinsley cleverly uses AIPAC's claims to influence to suggest that criticism of Rep. Jim Moran is overdone: "[Y]ou shouldn't brag about how influential you are if you want to get hysterically indignant when someone suggests that government policy is affected by your influence." Kinsley makes a decent case that Jewish groups have some influence on public policy. But none of Moran's critics contest that. What we contest is the idea that we're going to war with Iraq because of Jewish groups.
Posted at 06:33 PM
DIPLOMATIC EXCHANGE [John Derbyshire]
Yesterday I was talking with a senior official from China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs. These people don't give out much beyond boilerplate, not to conservative American hacks anyway, but there was one moment when the mask slipped a little. I asked: "Tell me something honestly. Do you think Kim Jong-il is crazy?" The official's face twitched, there was a moment of pained silence, then: "We think he is... very difficult." Everybody laughed (including the official).
Posted at 05:40 PM
RACIAL UNDERSTANDING IS NO JOKE! [Jonah Goldberg]
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) University of Missouri junior guard Ricky
Posted at 04:11 PM
NICE COUNTER TO CARTER [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
McCain in the New York Times today.
Posted at 03:00 PM
LECH'S ON OUR SIDE [Jonah Goldberg]
Another Nobel Peace Prize winner in our column. Lech Walesa endorses the US's campaign against Iraq. The columns are evening out nicely. Nobel winners against: Nelson Mandela, Jimmy Carter, Desmond Tutu and Yasir Arafat versus Walesa and Eli Weisel. They're still one up, but does Jimmy Carter really count? I mean if Bush were the President of a Third World dictatorship, Carter would be singing his praises.
Posted at 02:27 PM
CHAMPION OF ALL THE OPPRESSED? [Andrew Stuttaford]
According to Le Figaro, Chirac is a "white knight of peace, champion of all the oppressed of the Earth". Is that what they think in Saddam's jails, I wonder? Or, remembering the welcome that Mugabe was given in Paris, in Zimbabwe?
Posted at 02:24 PM
ALIEN HOLIDAY [Andrew Stuttaford]
Kathryn, in the interests of economy, the holiday could be timed to coincide with the Fourth of July (the Roswell 'saucer' crashed at around that time of year, after all). Of course, the aliens might find it a little tactless to have the holiday so close to, er, 'Independence Day'.
Posted at 02:20 PM
THE CANADIAN CONTRIBUTION [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Um. This is a typo right? EIGHTEEN troops deployed?
Posted at 02:14 PM
VERY COOL NRO WORLD NEWS [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Longtime (a few years is a VERY long time in web years) NRO contributor Thomas Hibbs (read him here, here, here—and his most recent, a review of Bruce Willis’s new movie here.) has been named the dean of a new, ambitious-sounding Honors College at Baylor University. Tom has been a professor of philosophy at Boston College since 1990. Here’s the Baylor press release.
Posted at 01:55 PM
SPACE ALIEN DAY [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
What exactly would be your position on this legislation, Andrew?
Posted at 01:28 PM
INSPECTORS SURRENDER [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
U.N. has starting pulling inspectors out of Iraq.
Posted at 12:10 PM
RITALIN; ONE FOR EBERSTADT [Stanley Kurtz]
Here’s an important article that pretty clearly confirms many of Mary Eberstadt’s concerns about Ritalin abuse.
Posted at 12:01 PM
US MILITARY IN SURRENDER TALKS WITH IRAQIS [Jonah Goldberg]
U.S. officials said Wednesday that surrender negotiations have secretly begun with key Iraqi military officials in hopes that some military units will not fight U.S. and coalition forces if there is war.
One senior official said that some parts of the Iraqi military already may have agreed not to fight.
These efforts underscore assessments by the CIA and Defense Intelligence Agency that the leadership around Saddam Hussein is brittle. Officials have been making that view somewhat public as part of an effort to publicize what they say is Saddam's vulnerability.
Posted at 11:59 AM
THE MOAB [Jonah Goldberg]
A friend of mine who's a military ordinance buff, fan of Mack Owens and who works in the defense industry just sent me this IM re Owen's piece on the Mother of All Bombs:
JG, you must stop the presses on the MOAB article. Not to be a nit (though that's exactly what I am being), the Daisy Cutter, and now the MOAB, are not fuel air explosives, as noted by the general media and now Mr. Owens. FAE get their oxidizers from the air; bombs usually provide their own. The Daisy Cutter and the MOAB are NOT FAEs, they are just really, really big bombs.
I have no dog in this fight. I just like the "boom" part.
Posted at 11:30 AM
DEADLIER THAN WAR [Jonah Goldberg]
I've been wanting to write a piece directly on the subject of how containment -- as a moral argument -- is morally offensive for quite a while. Walter Russel Meade does precisely that today in the Washington Post, and brilliantly so. If you want to argue that containment is preferable to war as a national security argument, that's intellectually acceptable. But if you want to make the moral argument that containment is better, you have to demonstrate why more pain and death over a long period is preferable to less pain and death over a short period. And that's a hard argument to make in moral terms.
Posted at 11:20 AM
THIS MADE MY DAY [Jonah Goldberg]
I'm getting all sorts of nice email from people who attended the debate last night, including from fools who think I lost (just kidding). But this is my favorite so far. Under the subject header "Goldberg Beats Bon Jovi at Wheaton!":
Posted at 10:55 AM
MOAB [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
You can watch yesterday's test here, from the Defense Department.
Posted at 10:33 AM
TOTAL BRINK [Stanley Kurtz]
Need it be said that an Iranian bomb could easily get into the hands of terrorists, who will not hesitate to use it against the United States? So an Israeli preemptive strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities would be a boon to the United States, just as Israel’s earlier strike on Saddam’s reactor was. Nonetheless, in the current circumstances, such a strike could also be the match that ignites chaos in the Middle East, and the world. Right now, we are on the brink with every member of the axis of evil.
Posted at 10:28 AM
SUICIDE/GENOCIDE [Stanley Kurtz]
We cannot now rule out an Osirak style strike on Iran by Israel, although this would surely be a political disaster at this delicate moment in the Middle East. A preemptive Israeli strike on Iran might easily tip the balance of Arab anger and really ignite the Arab street against an American invasion of Iraq, or against an American occupation in progress. But how can America handle this problem? In the short term, there is probably little we can do. My guess is that we have secretly negotiated a level of de facto cooperation from Iran for our invasion of Iraq, and we will be loathe to upset that. On the other hand, once the U.S. controls Iraq, we may be able to bring pressure on Iran. But with crises in Korea and Iraq about to explode. This Iranian situation is an even worse nightmare than it would be on its own–if that’s possible. Again, read former Iranian president Rafsanjani’s remarkable threat of suicide/genocide.
Posted at 10:26 AM
IRAN FRIGHT [Stanley Kurtz]
Lawrence Auster’s blog has a deeply frightening entry on the situation in Iran. Auster combines Time’s latest account of nuclear progress in Iran with an important piece on the subject by Michael Ledeen. Ledeen points out that former Iranian president Rafsanjani has already directly threatened Israel with nuclear annihilation--even announcing that he is willing to trade nuclear death in Iran for the total destruction of Israel. This is a sort of national suicide bombing with literally and openly genocidal intent. Here is a report on Rafsanjani’s threat.
Posted at 10:23 AM
SEX & THE MILITARY [Stanley Kurtz]
For a quick read on the problem of sex in the military, see this 1996 piece from the New York Times, by Eric Schmitt. It shows the usual NYT bias, but nonetheless gives a good sketch of the problem. For a longer and more substantive brief against coed basic training in the military, see the following 1997 report by James Anderson of The Heritage Foundation. Notable here is the link between coed training and sexual abuse, as well as Anderson’s pointing to the Marines as a model. The Marines are the one service that still segregates the sexes during basic training–and it works. Finally, for a superb book on the problems of women in the military, see Stephanie Gutmann’s, The Kinder Gentler Military.
Posted at 10:19 AM
SOLDIERS & CIVILIANS [Stanley Kurtz]
There was plenty of interest in my posts yesterday on coed dorms and training in the military. So here’s some further comment and reading. First, it’s important to emphasize that military life and civilian life are not the same. The military trains men to be disciplined and act with honor, but also to kill. It’s not always easy to turn that aggressiveness off. The military also emphasizes rank, and this leads to complicated attempts to limit fraternization between superiors and those they command. And military training and education emphasizes group cohesion in a way that ordinary higher education does not. For all of these reasons and more, coed living and training in a military context are more complicated than coed living in civilian universities.
Posted at 10:05 AM
WATCH TODAY [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Kudlow coming up this hour.
Posted at 09:04 AM
SERBIAN PRIME MINISTER KILLED [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Posted at 08:59 AM
SENSE OF CONGRESS [Rod Dreher]
About Congress's bold, courageous decision to rename French fries "freedom fries," I can only say that I'm sorry H.L. Mencken isn't around to give such boobery the scorn it deserves. I'm all for Congress expressing its disgust with the French, but come on, guys, picking on fried potatoes? I mean, really.
Posted at 07:42 AM
DEPRESSING [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Do a google search for "parenthood" and the first return is "Planned Parenthood Federation of America."
Posted at 07:17 AM
JOHN KERRY'S FAVORITE POET [Andrew Stuttaford]
Ah, Neruda, Ramesh. Here’s a poem by John Kerry’s favorite (a Stalin prizewinner, no less), written on the occasion of Uncle Joe's death:
"To be men! That is the Stalinist law!
…We must learn from Stalin
his sincere intensity
his concrete clarity
…Stalin is the noon,
the maturity of man and the peoples.
Stalinists, Let us bear this title with pride.
…Stalinist workers, clerks, women
take care of this day!
The light has not vanished.
The fire has not disappeared,
There is only the growth of
Light, bread, fire and hope
In Stalin’s invincible time!
…In recent years the dove,
Peace, the wandering persecuted rose,
Found herself on his shoulders
And Stalin, the giant,
…A wave beats against the stones of the shore.
But Malenkov will continue his work."
Posted at 07:01 AM
NORTH KOREA TO TEST AGAIN [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Bill Gertz reports.
Posted at 06:37 AM
HEADED TOWARD ALASKA [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Artic drilling could get a vote this week.
Posted at 06:28 AM
MUSLIM SUPPORT [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Albania's on board (scroll down to last item).
Posted at 06:11 AM
DON'T CALL [John J. Miller]
I can't stand telemarketers, and so I'm pleased that their obnoxiousness will now have to overcome a federal "Do Not Call" list. They have only themselves to blame for this mess.
Posted at 05:37 AM
FOR THE RECORD [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
I'm told Aaron Browne used the phrase "Groundhog Day diplomacy" Tuesday night. Now, granted that was not the most creative phrasing ever, but, I do need to go on record noting: I did not and will never steal a line from Newsnight. The Corner said it first.
Posted at 05:23 AM
RE: THIS JOINT [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Jonah, you may never leave The Corner again. I'm getting hate mail from people sick of seeing my name. You must stay and post forever.
Posted at 05:07 AM
THE RELUCTANT MUSLIM [Rod Dreher]
Daniel Pipes makes a powerful case that FBI director Robert Mueller owes the public a proper accounting of why the bureau let an insubordinate Muslim FBI agent get away with it -- and what kind of damage this agent may have done. Congress should be raising hell about this scandal.
Posted at 12:35 AM
CRUNCHY IN DC TONIGHT [Rod Dreher]
DC crunchy cons, don't forget about tonight's shindig downtown, sponsored by the America's Future Foundation. See you at 7 p.m. Bring all those bottles of French wine you're planning to throw out in protest. I shall see to it that they're properly disposed of.
Posted at 12:04 AM
Tuesday, March 11, 2003
MY KIND OF FRENCH PEOPLE [Rod Dreher]
Got a slightly peppery e-mail from a Franco-American correspondent, who appreciated the good words I had for the French, but thought I had been wrong not to note that there are plenty of French people who are very conscious of what America did for France in liberating them twice. He says we shouldn't take the actions and views of a minority of Frenchmen for those of the entire nation.
And then he told a great anecdote, about an admirable woman:
One of the most moving things I have EVER seen was my father's 60-something assistant, a wiry, austere, formal French woman, bear down on an American college student who was wearing short-shorts and listening to his boombox in one of the cemeteries in Normandie. She grabbed him by the ear and dragged his face down to one of the crosses and proceeded to explain to him that he owed more respect than that to the 23-year-old who died on a nearby beach to help liberate Western Europe (somehow, this point gets lost) from Nazi domination.
Isn't that great? I got another letter, entirely in French, from a Parisian gentleman. He said the France I love has mostly disappeared, and that his countrymen are a depressed, malcontented people. He doesn't understand Chirac and de Villepin's actions, and complains that the newspapers there are "practically all anti-American. Happily, regular reading of NRO and the Wall Street Journal allow one to stay informed." The gentleman calls The Corner "un bonheur quotidien" (a daily pleasure). Thanks, copain! I won't identify our Parisian confederate by name, for his own protection, but if Rich will spring for plane tickets, I propose that Jonah and I head to Paris and take him up on his generous offer to take us out to dinner.
Posted at 11:52 PM
THIS JOINT IS JUMPING [Jonah Goldberg]
It's really jumping! Maybe I should leave town more often.
Anyway, the debate went fine I guess. The crowd certainly seemed to like it. Very smart bunch, many conservatives, from all over the area. Lori Wallach is a very smart lady. But we spent much of the night talking past each other. She wouldn't tackle the official debate topic "Does Free Trade Help Poor Countries" in order to beat up the WTO. I wouldn't let her force me to defend the sprawling bureaucracy. I kind of wish we had teams because I am sure a more forceful defense of the WTO could be made by people more comfortable with statistical nitty gritty Wallach got into. My kingdom for a Brink Lindsey! I'll have more details in the AM, but I just thought I should see how things were going here without me.
Posted at 11:42 PM
MORE ESTRADA [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Expect another cloture vote on Thursday.
Posted at 08:17 PM
WAR WITHOUT BLAIR [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The option's open.
Posted at 07:57 PM
U2 BOO-HOO [Andrew Stuttaford]
UN inspection agency spokesman Buchanan on why the UN temporarily suspended U-2 flights over Iraq (it had been the first time that two U2s had been operating simultaneously over the country): "The Iraqis were concerned about it. They asked us why two planes were operating and said it was a surprise to them. We did not want to do anything to get them upset, so we requested that America withdrew the aircraft." That seems a touch feeble.
Posted at 07:05 PM
JOE LIEBERMAN ON MORAN [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Just in to NRO World Headquarters via our intrepid contributor Jim Geraghty. Senator Lieberman weighs in on "The comments made by Jim Moran recently were deeply offensive and morally wrong. Such sentiments are inconsistent with the ideals of tolerance and diversity upon which our nation was founded. Comments like these have no place in our public discourse."
Posted at 07:03 PM
THE F WORD [Andrew Stuttaford]
Far be it from me to cast the first pierre when it comes to criticizing people for being rude about the French, but I'm not sure that this makes Congress look too smart. Besides, "freedom fries" just sounds absurd. There's a perfectly good word in British-English for those who really insist on an alternative: chips. Then all they have to do is remember to call potato chips crisps.
Posted at 06:34 PM
WE ARE GOING TO WAR [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
First sign I have seen today: ABCNEWS.COM's indispensible "The Note" is going on hiatus.
Posted at 06:21 PM
BROOKHISER ON W. [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Rick Brookhiser interviewed on The Atlantic Monthly's website on W.'s mind. (Note: this is a supplement to his cover story in the print editon of Atlantic.)
Posted at 06:10 PM
KERRY'S TASTES [Ramesh Ponnuru]
Just read the Vogue profile of John Kerry. It figures that his favorite poet would be a Commie (viz., Pablo Neruda).
Posted at 05:51 PM
KERRY ON MORAN [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
“Senator Kerry believes that Congressman Moran’s comments were unwise, inappropriate and offensive,” Robert Gibbs, a Kerry spokesman, tells NRO contributor Jim Geraghty (who will have more on the Moran mess tomorrow on NRO).
Posted at 05:50 PM
PELOSI ON MORAN [Ramesh Ponnuru]
“Congressman Moran's comments were not only inappropriate, they were offensive. He has properly apologized. His comments have no place in the Democratic Party.”
Posted at 05:34 PM
INTERN CALL [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Are you a conservative college student, excited by the prospect of doing ANYTHING for the magazine William F. Buckley Jr. founded? Does your day begin and end in The Corner? (Actually, please don’t answer that one—an answer in the affirmative might get you committed.) Would you love to learn firsthand how the premier conservative webzine comes together?
If you answered yes to any of the above, you might be exactly who we are looking for in our NRO summer intern search. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with your resume, cover letter telling a little about yourself and why you would like to be a part-time NRO intern, and available days of the week for the summer (which can start as early as you want, as far as we are concerned--there are spring options available too). The subject line of the e-mail should read “Internship.”
Posted at 05:32 PM
EXCELLENT POINT OR WISHFUL THINKING? [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
A reader says of "Have You Forgotten?": "Given that the track shows a drop date of 15 APR, I expect it will be playing on its release date on the Baghdad airwaves. Courtesy, of course, of the Armed Forces Radio programmers broadcasting from liberated Iraq."
Posted at 05:05 PM
18 MONTHS & GROUNDHOG DAY DIPLOMACY [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Today is the 18th month anniversary of 9/11, and we're listening to the Security Council yet again, argue the same things, on the same general sides, asking for more delay, warning the United States instead of Saddam Hussein. It's like watching the movie Groundhog Day. Bill Murray wakes up everyday to the same day, and after a while realizes he's got to do things differently to make the day go any differently, and, ultimately, to get on with it. And yet, here we are, never learning. If we delay again--a few more days--who is really going to be convinced who is not convinced today?
Posted at 04:44 PM
HALTING THE DEBATE [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
This morning on Good Morning America, all debate over the war effectively ended. They brought out a heartbreakingly sick boy to argue against the war. And you thought it was hard to tackle cloning and stem-cell research when Michael J. Fox is your opponent? Here's the excerpt, freshly transcribed from the good people at the Media Research Center:
Charlie Gibson: "We want to give you now an update on someone that you have seen often on this broadcast, someone who has touched millions of lives, talking about 12 year old Mattie Stepanek, one of our favorite people in the world. He is battling a rare disease that has already killed all of his siblings and weakened his mother. Our Chris Cuomo visited him in the intensive care unit at the Children's National Medical center in Washington, D.C. Mattie is there now on a ventilator."
Posted at 04:40 PM
BLACK HAWKS, CON'T [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Another email: "As a structural engineer supporting Army aviation, let me add that Special Ops routinely uses MH-60 and MH-47 helicopters for insertions and the like. Many of these helicopters are armed to the teeth with machine guns, rocket launchers, and Hellfire missiles. The attack helicopter guys don’t like seeing this because they regard it as treading on “their turf.” I personally wouldn’t choose an MH-60 Black Hawk over an Apache for a pure attack mission, but if you need to insert some Rangers and do it with some serious firepower, an MH-60 is just the ticket."
Posted at 04:34 PM
BLACK HAWKS: A LESSON [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Someone who knows, points out:
One point worth clarifying from the initial reports I have seen - the UH-60 Blackhawk is not an attack helicopter, it is a untility helicopter. It is primarily used to transport troops and supplies, though it does have other uses. The Army actually 'codes' the nomenclature of its helicopters. UH-## are utility helicopters, AH-## are attack heilcopters (i.e. AH-64D Apache), CH-## are cargo helicopters (i.e. CH-47 Chinook), OH-## are observation helicopters (i.e. OH-58D Kiowa), and MH-## are modified versions of the basic helicopter.
Posted at 04:18 PM
"HAVE YOU FORGOTTEN?" [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The song they will not be playing after "Like a Virgin" on Baghdad radio.
Posted at 03:58 PM
ON THE LIST OF ACCOMPLISHMENTS FOR THE WEEK [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The House of Representatives has ditched French Fries.
Posted at 03:19 PM
BLACKHAWK MISSING [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Various sources are reporting there is a blackhawk missing in central New York. (Update.)
Posted at 03:09 PM
SCHROEDER SHREDDED [Andrew Stuttaford]
Singer and poet Wolf Biermann is one of the legends of the old East German opposition (he was thrown out of the country in 1976). DPA is reporting that Biermann (the son of a communist murdered by the Nazis) is attacking German chancellor Schroeder as a "National Pacifist." In Biermann's view, Schroeder's "opportunism" is worse than the Daladier/Chamberlain appeasement of the 1930s. "Their appeasement policy was wrong, but at least they were serious. There was no historical experience to go on...Schroeder's appeasement policy is under that level. It's worse than a mistake. It's a crime."
Posted at 02:34 PM
SIXTY DEGREES OF SEPARATION [Andrew Stuttaford]
Tony Blair may be looking increasingly embattled, but he may find some comfort in the fact that one of his leading adversaries is eccentric Labour MP Tam Dalyell, a man who has never been short of lost causes to support. Interviewed on the BBC World Service this morning, Dalyell was at pains to explain that he was not anti-American. His proof? That he was distantly related to Harry Truman. Very distantly, I would say.
Posted at 02:21 PM
MORE ON FRANCE [Rod Dreher]
A significant number of readers have written to say there's no excuse for saying anything nice about France now. C'est la vie, I reckon, but I'm hearing from many more readers who agree with me that the French government is behaving despicably, but there's still a lot to love about France -- and that it's important to remember that in a time of crisis and animosity. So many of you wrote with your own stories of falling in love with France. Here's one of my favorite letters, from reader John Novak:
Thanks for saying exactly what I think about France, too. I hate their duplicitous politics, but the style and beauty of their culture makes me think they are closer to God than even they know. I stole a line from Bruce Paltrow (he used it on his daughter, Gwyneth) when I told my wife that I wanted her to take our 4 year old son to Paris so he would see that city for the first time with a woman who would love him forever.
Posted at 01:49 PM
A FRENCHMAN WRITES [Rod Dreher]
Regarding my column today praising the good things about France, a Frenchman (with a governmental e-mail address, no less) writes:
Just one word: thank you.
And, well, I agree with the "treacherous creeps" part, too. I'll be showing the American military cemetery in Normandy to my own son next week-end. He, for one, will not grow up to become a Villepin.
Times will get better, eventually. In the meantime, God bless America for doing in Iraq what it did on our soil, twice, at a horrible price.
I'm so grateful for Frenchmen like this reader. They do exist, and Americans would do well to remember that rather than reducing the entire nation and its people to a caricature.
Posted at 01:43 PM
U-2 SUSPENDED [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
After those IRaqi threats to shoot them down, we've suspended our survelliance flights.
Posted at 01:13 PM
KERRY'S WAR MOTTO [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The Mass. Democrat president candidate says he will stop complaining about going into Iraq once we have—if we ever do.
Posted at 12:49 PM
DON'T THINK FOR ME [Rod Dreher]
I'm sorry, but Fox is getting on my nerves. A few minutes ago, presenter David Asman concluded an interview with a guest speculating on Turkey's evolving role in the Iraq conflict. Asman concluded by saying that "we" certainly don't want to treat Turkey "shabbily," like the French are doing. That may be true, but is it the place of a news presenter/interviewer (as distinct from a commentator, like Bill O'Reilly or Sean Hannity) to spin the news this way? The next guest was Pakistan's UN ambassador, who was thanked by Asman "on behalf of all Americans" for Pakistan's help in capturing al-Qaeda operatives. Since when does this news presenter, who is generally very good at his job, speak for all Americans? Why can't he just ask this diplomat questions without spinning? Asman ended the interview with, "Once again, we are very happy that Pakistan is such a good ally in the war on terror." Good grief!
Posted at 12:32 PM
FEMINIST LITMUS TEST [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
You must toe the line on everything. Including golf clubs. Ms. magazine chides golfer Nancy Lopez and other pro-golf women and sportswriters for either supporting Augusta’s right to be all men if they want to be or for not supporting the force-women-in movement.
Posted at 12:08 PM
THOSE REFUGEES [John J. Miller]
Derb: Under current policy, we're supposed to take in a maximum of 70,000 refugees this year, including 20,000 from Africa. I assume the people you were referencing fit into this scheme, though I suppose it's entirely possible they don't. Asylum policy is a bigger problem than refugee policy, and roundly abused. The Center for Immigration Studies is an excellent source of information on all of this.
Posted at 11:30 AM
BREAKING: IRAQ THREATENS US PLANES [Jonah Goldberg]
Posted at 11:28 AM
WHAT SHOULD DERB GOOGLE? [Rick Brookhiser]
John, Google "essentials go well with me"+"essentials go well with him"+ "science"+?
Posted at 11:22 AM
MORE AIR FORCE ACADEMY [Stanley Kurtz]
I’ve gotten a couple of very interesting letters in response to my post on the Air Force Academy rape scandal. One, from an honorably discharged female veteran, looks back fondly on the days when Navy basic training had separate barracks for men and women. This veteran said the system worked, and that female recruits under the new integrated living (and showering) system were often uncomfortable. After experiencing segregated basic training, she would not enlist in today’s radically integrated military.
Another letter says that the real problem at the Air Force Academy isn’t coed dorms, it’s fraternization between upper classmen and “doolie” (i.e. freshmen–freshperson?) cadets. Upper classmen have power over doolies, and close friendships between doolies of any sex and upper classmen is considered improper fraternization. But obviously, ties between upper class men and doolie women are something else again. The power of older and higher ranking men over younger doolie women is sexually explosive, and distorts the possibility of real consent. This strikes me as yet another reason why the military cannot and should not be expected to work on the same sexually integrated basis that civilian life now does.
Posted at 11:03 AM
OUR NEED [Stanley Kurtz]
A couple of folks have written me assuming that my earlier post was a call to reinstate the draft. I didn’t say that. I said we need a larger military, whether by draft or expanded all volunteer force. I stressed that more volunteers would be expensive because we need to know that this approach also confronts us with tough choices. But my point is that, however we get there, we need more troops.
Posted at 10:23 AM
REFUGEE POLICY [John Derbyshire]
I am astonished that this story has generated so little comment. Does the U.S.A. actually need 12,000 illiterate African Muslims at this point in time? There are, of course, all sorts of taboos in play here--the immigration taboo, the Muslim taboo, the race taboo, so perhaps I should not be astonished. But can't we at least talk about this? Presumably Americans, a humane and compassionate people, would like to have some kind of refugee policy: but is this the one we want? If there has been any large public debate about this, I missed it.
Posted at 10:22 AM
IN DEFENSE OF ROBBINS [Jonah Goldberg]
A longtime emailer comes to Robbins defense:
While you can certainly read the Robbins thing the way you read it, and react to it exactly as you have, I think, given the fact that Robbins is writing against the war, he doesn't want to see blood either. What he's saying, perhaps, is that given the fact that we can't lose, it is neither noble nor brave to start the fight at all. What we want a big kid to do is refrain from picking on a little kid. It is a given that Iraq can't win, that it will be a 1000 - 1 massacre, like the last Gulf War. Or, if Saddam hides out in the city, maybe even worse. Can't we find another way? In short, Robbins' intent is to shame the U.S. out of picking a fight with an unworthy opponent. No war, no blood.
On the off chance other people subscribe to this view, let me say I think it's batty. The "pick on somebody your own size" argument has absolutely no place in foreign policy when your national security is threatened, especially in the era of weapons of mass destruction. If one man can inflict the kind of damage that only whole armies could a generation ago, then it's silly to say that America shouldn't "pick" on that one man because it would make us a bully. We don't owe it to anybody or anything to only fight wars we might lose because that would be a "fair fight." Besides, I don't remember Robbins being outraged when we "picked on" and "bullied" Milosevic or Aideed.
Posted at 09:37 AM
BATTLE OF OLD BALDY [John J. Miller]
Two museums are fighting for ownership of Old Baldy, the preserved head of Civil War General George Meade's horse.
Posted at 09:27 AM
HOMER WAS RIGHT! [Jonah Goldberg]
The universe is a doughnut!
Posted at 09:26 AM
KEEP ON TALKING [Stanley Kurtz ]
I think it will take at least a couple more rounds to clear up the factual disagreements between Fumento and Eberstadt. This debate, I suspect, will go on. The deeper reason for that is that the differences between Fumento and Eberstadt connect to larger philosophical differences–questions about the relation between the brain and the mind, and about what it means to be human. Despite what strikes me as overmuch of rancor from many parties in the debate over Ritalin and similar drugs, the issues and the antagonists in this exchange are worthy. I hope they will keep on talking–especially about the larger issues. For my own reflections on some of the underlying questions, see my piece, “No Brainer,” from a couple of years ago.
Posted at 09:21 AM
EBERSTADT OR FUMENTO? [Stanley Kurtz]
I have tremendous respect for the work of both Eberstadt and Fumento. On this issue of ADHD and Ritalin, however, I lean Eberstadt’s way. Both authors make good points, but there are a couple of claims in Fumento’s reply to Eberstadt that give me pause. Although Fumento says that Eberstadt misrepresents physician Lawrence Diller’s position on ADHD, Fumento effectively acknowledges that Diller says what Eberstadt claims he says–Ritalin, while perhaps sometimes helpful, is nonetheless often over-prescribed. And in Fumento’s original piece, as well as his reply to Eberstadt, he stresses that Ritalin is not identical to cocaine. But as I understand it, Eberstadt never argues that Ritalin and cocaine are identical, only that they are close cousins, and that this relationship raises important questions and concerns.
Posted at 09:20 AM
EBERSTADT VS. FUMENTO [Stanley Kurtz]
About a month ago, Michael Fumento, an excellent conservative writer specializing in issues of medicine and law, published an article in The New Republic about ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). Fumento took on the numerous conservatives who have raised public questions about the prevalence and definition of ADHD, and about what skeptics believe to be a too quick tendency to prescribe the drug Ritalin to treat ADHD. Now Mary Eberstadt, one of the conservative skeptics criticized by Fumento, has responded in a letter to The New Republic, followed by a reply from Fumento.
Posted at 09:18 AM
ANGLICAN CORNER [John Derbyshire]
From the comedian Robin Williams, who is an Episcopalian, on a recent HBO special:
Top 10 Reasons to Be an Episcopalian:
10. No snake handling.
9. You can believe in dinosaurs.
8. Male and female God created them; male and female we ordain them.
7. You don't have to check your brains at the door.
6. Pew aerobics.
5. Church year is color-coded.
4. Free wine on Sunday.
3. All of the pageantry -- none of the guilt.
2. You don't have to know how to swim to get baptized.
...and the Number One to be an Episcopalian:
1. No matter what you believe, there's bound to be at least one other Episcopalian who agrees with you.
Posted at 09:09 AM
SMALLER THAN THE GULF WAR [Stanley Kurtz]
With Korea and Iran making nuclear weapons, with the Musharraf government in a nuclear armed Islamic Pakistan vulnerable, with Libya and Syria as potential customers for North Korean plutonium, with terrorists to be rooted out in places like Indonesia and the Philippines, do we really think we can get away with a military substantially smaller than in the Gulf War? True, technology now allows our soldiers to do much more than they could, even in the early nineties. But technology won’t allow a soldier to be in two countries at once. We’re relying too much on our reserves which, The Washington Post reports today, missed their January and February recruiting goals. The lengthy overseas deployments, over and above the usual commitment of 39 days a year, have taken their toll. This country has never been more threatened than it is today. How much longer will we go on pretending?
Posted at 09:08 AM
GOING IT WITHOUT A DRAFT [Stanley Kurtz]
Our military is too small. Don’t want a draft? Alright, then we’re going to have to pay (big time) for a larger all volunteer army. I’ve been saying this for some time, but reality is about to concentrate our minds. Whether it will take 60,000 troops to occupy Iraq or 200,000 (estimates vary), our current all volunteer military will be severely strained after the war.
Posted at 09:07 AM
THE HAGEL PROBLEM [John J. Miller]
President Bush called Afghan president Hamid Karzai last week to apologize for the way he was treated by a few senators, reports the Washington Post. One of the prime offenders was Democratic senator Barbara Boxer, a dependably rude person. Another was Republican senator Chuck Hagel, who scolded a man with one of the toughest jobs in the world as if he were a deputy assistant secretary. Hagel keeps berating the Bush administration for not being multilateral enough. Looks like he doesn't know too much about diplomacy himself.
Posted at 09:04 AM
BRIGHT IDEA [Stanley Kurtz]
In light of continuing complaints about rape at the Air Force Academy, the Air Force has come up with an idea that was once obvious, but in this day and age must be counted brilliant and original. The Air Force is now considering separating the dormitory rooms of male and female cadets. After all, as the Washington Post reports, male cadets now see female cadets in intimate circumstances–-walking down the hall with bathrobes on, etc. But no, say the military’s “rape counselors” and “sexual violence experts,” separate dorms would be a “step backwards.” The pro-androgyny feminists who have insinuated themselves into the military’s bureaucracy aren’t truly concerned with stopping rapes. Their real hope is to use the sexual scandals made inevitable by their utopian gender-mixing policies as a license for yet more programs that try to teach soldiers that men and women are the same. At a time when America faces war on all fronts, let’s hope our military finally has the guts to reign in these silly and damaging feminist experiments.
Posted at 08:43 AM
TOM ROBBINS [Jonah Goldberg]
"Quite probably the worst thing about the inevitable and totally unjustifiable war with Iraq is that there’s no chance the U.S. might lose it. America is a young country, and intellectually, emotionally, and physically, it has been exhibiting all the characteristics of an adolescent bully, a pubescent punk who’s too big for his britches and too strong for his age. Someday, perhaps, we may grow out of our mindless, pimple-faced arrogance, but in the meantime, it might do us a ton of good to have our butts kicked. Unfortunately, like most of the targets we pick on, Iraq is much too weak to give us the thrashing our continuously overbearing behavior deserves, while Saddam is even less deserving of victory than Bush." - novelist Tom Robbins, Seattle Weekly.
Now, I receive the tedious chickenhawk charge from anti-war types almost every day. I think it's mostly a dumb argument or at best a fine debating point stretched to unrecognizable lengths. But tell me? What are we to make of Robbins? As a proponent of war, I would be delighted -- ecstatic even -- if not a single American were killed or wounded. I would love it if only the most brutal members of the Baathist regime were killed or wounded, sparing the lives of innocent Iraqis and unfortunate Iraqi conscripts. In short, I don't crave blood in the slightest. I hope for victory, yes, blood, no. Robbins, on the other hand, craves not merely blood, but American blood. How else to read this? The worst thing about this war is that we can't lose it? What does he think "losing" and getting "out butt kicked" might mean other than the deaths -- probably by chemical and biologoical weapons -- of tens of thousands of Americans?
I will never -- ever -- again bite my tongue when tempted to say that some of these cretins are not merely dumb, but anti-American and unpatriotic.
Posted at 08:41 AM
HART'S HEART [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
This, for the record, is the second Democrat in the last month or so to say something anti-Semitic in the context of the war and basically get away with it. Gary Hart’s presidential campaign was dead in the water anyway, but it’s not like he is Louis Farakhan. Here, again, is a mainstream member of his party--where’s the condemnation?
Posted at 08:39 AM
MORAN'S JEW PROBLEM [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
So Virginia Democrat James Moran blames the war on Iraq on the Jews. (They’ve got Hollywood. They’ve got the White House. They're somehow responsible for Saddam Hussein. Evidently the only place they don’t have is the United Nations.) And then Moran "apologizes": "I should not have singled out the Jewish community and regret giving any impression that its members are somehow responsible for the course of action being pursued by the Administration, or are somehow behind an impending war.” “Regret…the impression…somehow”? He said: "If it were not for the strong support of the Jewish community for this war with Iraq, we would not be doing this…The leaders of the Jewish community are influential enough that they could change the direction of where this is going, and I think they should." He said this at an antiwar forum on Friday. That’s at least as bad as a birthday party . Where are the “Resign Moran” demands?
Posted at 08:37 AM
DEBATE [Jonah Goldberg]
I'm heading up to Wheaton College in Mass to debate Lori Wallach on free trade stuff. It turns out she's a ringer on this stuff, so I have to do more reading. I also have to finish my syndicated column. So, in short, I will be a light presence in the Corner today and early tomorrow. This is, perhaps, the only place I will be a light presence.
Posted at 08:26 AM
THE SECOND RESOLUTION [Jonah Goldberg]
I think you can argue it round or flat whether it was a good idea to take the Iraq issue to the United Nations in the first place. But I think the second-resolution gambit has clearly been revealed to be a disaster -- unless the goal is less to disarm Iraq and more to overturn the international order. I understand that we wanted to help the British by getting a second resolution. But at least before, with 1441 and the dozen-plus other resolutions, the United States could have said it was in compliance with the Security Council by going to war. That was the whole point of negotiating 1 resolution in the first place. 1441 was what we wanted and we got it. If we went to war under its authority alone the Security Council naysayers would be put in the position of having to explain why the US was wrong at a time of war. I doubt they would have been too loud in the face of a fait accompli. Now, we've more or less conceded that we don't have the authority under 1441 and we need more approval from the UN. If we don't get that approval in the form of a second resolution we'll be in defiance of the UN if we go to war.
I don't mind being in defiance of the UN as a matter of principle. But as a matter of politics it's a much riskier proposition.
Posted at 08:19 AM
INTO THE UNKNOWN [John Derbyshire]
This is a venture into what, for a lot of readers, will be more-than-you-wanted-to-know territory. Those who have a low threshold of tolerance for personal stuff should definitely go read something else RIGHT NOW. OK? OK. Now: I have just walked Boris. I have walked him pretty much every morning for the past 11 years, vacations aside. That's close to four thousand walkies with Boris. Almost all walkies occur early in the morning. I am a lark--I get up at either 5:30 or 6:00, depending on how busy I am. I scan the newspaper over breakfast. Then I do the essentials. Then I walk the mutt. Now, as with the rest of you (I imagine) the essentials go better some days than others. You know what I mean. Well, when I walk Boris, he does his essentials. And like yours and mine, his essentials go sometimes well, sometimes not so well. Now here is the mystery: Boris and I are in sync. When things go well with me, they go well with him, and vice versa. I have mentally resisted noticing this for a long time, but after four thousand walkies, the empirical evidence is overwhelming. There is no doubt. Yet how on earth is this possible? We sometimes give Boris scraps as a treat, but his diet and mine have really nothing in common. He eats dog food out of a can, with dry dog food in the evening. I know Boris has bonded with me deeply, and have told a story about that here. Can a dog bond this deeply, though? Where is the science here? A true mystery. Have any other readers noticed this phenomenon? Is there any scientific literature on it? How do I even google this?
Posted at 08:04 AM
PAUL JOHNSON [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
majorly disses France. Stay tuned to NRO this morning for a love note or to (to France, not Paul Johnson, though we can provide the latter by request).
Posted at 07:38 AM
MICHAEL LEDEEN [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
on the Iranian nuclear threat.
Posted at 07:34 AM
AL QAEDA INVESTIGATIONS STEPPED UP IN 8 U.S. CITIES [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
After KSM's arrest.
Posted at 05:28 AM
JOIN THE CLUB. [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
A middle-of-the-night e-mail:
The email that you just posted describes me perfectly, and I also just subscribed yesterday. Couldn't take the guilt anymore. I had been reading NRO online for several months, but didn't make it over to the corner until Election night 2002. Wow!!! You guys won me over that night. Keep up the amazing work.(You can subscribe here.
Posted at 05:18 AM
AL QAEDA PLANS TO ATTACK KUWAITI AND SAUDI OILFIELDS [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Bill Gertz reports.
Posted at 01:28 AM
D.C., HEALTHY? [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Natural Health magazine says D.C. is the second healthiest city in the U.S. That sits contrary to years of comments to the contrary from non-native D.C. Hill and other political staff.
Posted at 01:07 AM
HE SUBSCRIBED. YOU CAN TOO! [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Last year I stumbled onto your site looking for great conservative commentary online. After a few months I finally got around to clicking on “The Corner” link at the top of the page. I couldn’t believe just how much of your site I was missing out on. Instead of checking NRO a few times a week, like an addict I was leaving a browser open to refresh every half hour. I don’t know if you were the first to pioneer this concept, but it sure has made me a loyal visitor and eventually guilted me into subscribing to NRODT! Keep up the great work!
Posted at 01:05 AM
KANGAROO COURT READY TO JUMP? [Andrew Stuttaford]
The International Criminal ‘Court’ holds its inaugural session on Tuesday. The US, quite rightly, is having nothing to do with it, but Britain is a member, and subject to its jurisdiction. The court will, clearly, be highly politicized. This could become yet another worry for the embattled Mr. Blair as he contemplates participating in an invasion of Iraq that could well lack the approval of the UN. It goes without saying that ignoring the UN in this way is highly likely to antagonize the international bureaucratic class that will inevitably be responsible for shaping the court’s agenda.
Get a lawyer, Mr. Blair, or, better still, take Britain out of the court.
Posted at 12:20 AM
UNACCOUNTABLE [Andrew Stuttaford]
Just how crooked is the EU budget? The Commission doesn’t seem to want anyone to know.
Posted at 12:16 AM
PATTEN, AGAIN [Andrew Stuttaford]
There’s an interview with EU external affairs commissioner, Chris Patten, in Monday’s edition of the Independent. Much of it covers familiar, if annoying, ground, but this passage is striking:
“Mr. Patten believes things might have been very different had the Democrats clinched more disputed votes in Florida and won the last presidential election. “I don’t believe that America has changed fundamentally. I don’t believe that there has been a sea-change in US public opinion despite the energetic activities of Fox News,” he says. “Clearly, the born-again Christian movement in the US is politically very influential. I think it is wrong to talk about fundamentalism as if it were solely an Islamic phenomenon. I think that alienation touches every great religion.””
Take each sentence individually and, despite the childish jibe directed at Fox News, there is not too much to object to. Put them together, and the underlying subtext is clear, and rather less innocuous: the US government is under the influence of a bunch of religious nuts drawn from a fundamentalist tradition that is not so far removed from the loppers and choppers of radical Islam.
Patten is entitled to his opinions, which are, in reality, little more than a tawdry collection of prejudices masquerading as sophistication, but if they represent the extent of Brussels' understanding of this country, it’s no surprise that US-EU relations are in such poor shape.
Posted at 12:07 AM
Monday, March 10, 2003
NOW HE SAYS IT [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Blix says Iraq should have declared their drones.
Posted at 11:36 PM
AN EMAIL: [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Subject: I wish I worked at NR
It appears cocktail time is 3:36 PM...
Posted at 06:56 PM
ON THE OTHER HAND [Ramesh Ponnuru]
I suppose we should be grateful that Deborah Sontag is off the Middle East beat.
Posted at 03:36 PM
CIRCUIT BREAKER [Ramesh Ponnuru]
As New York Times Magazine hatchet jobs go, yesterday's Deborah Sontag cover story on the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals was a small masterpiece. Note the understated way in which she reminds us once every two pages or so that Virginia was part of the Confederacy. I especially liked this concluding thought: "It would certainly help many Americans sustain their faith in the system if the courts could find their equilibrium, if they could become less ideological, less predictable and less political." Actually, I think predictability is a very good thing in a legal system. The Times could, however, get by with a little less of it.
Posted at 03:35 PM
WE SURRENDER!!! [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Oh, wait, the war hasn't started?
Posted at 03:08 PM
SENDING THEM OUR BEST [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The next MTV Real World will be be in Paris.
Posted at 02:55 PM
RUSSIA PROMISES TO VETO [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Posted at 02:02 PM
BRAIN DRAIN [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The Oakland Tribune, in a story on partial-birth abortion over the weekend, uses the weird, dehumanizing phrasing “the draining of its skull contents.”
Posted at 01:54 PM
I MISSED IT [Jonah Goldberg]
Everyone keeps asking me if I saw last night's Simpsons. Alas, I missed it. Sorry.
Posted at 01:48 PM
TRE AND POL AND PEN [John Derbyshire]
Why do I like this story so much?
Posted at 01:42 PM
FROM A DNC EMAIL [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Sent out this weekend: "In a national poll from Quinnipiac University released Thursday, Americans said they would rather elect a Democratic president than re-elect George W. Bush! By a margin of 48 to 44 percent, Americans would rather have new leadership in the White House than continue following the same failed policies."
Does this mean they have finally recognized he was elected the first time?
Posted at 01:34 PM
CORNER COMMENTS? [NRO Staff]
Have an item you would like to see NRO take up? A criticism of something you've seen? A suggestion? Send any and all, 24 hours a day to email@example.com.
Posted at 12:59 PM
REAGAN COIN [John J. Miller]
Ronald Reagan tops the Littleton Coin Company's recent survey of who or what should be depicted on U.S. coins. (Click here, and scroll down to the "News and Events" area.) Littleton vice president Jeff Marsh explained the methodology in an email: "Our poll was posted on our website and asked for people to tell us who they’d like to see on a coin. People could only vote once. The people who visited our site may be inclined, obviously, to be coin collectors and enthusiasts. Our survey was not formal, in that we didn’t have an independent polling group conduct a formal survey of randomly selected participants." Last year, I proposed putting Reagan on the dime.
Posted at 12:59 PM
LONGFELLOW [John Derbyshire]
Nice to see Matthew Pearl talking up Longfellow in today's Wall Street Journal (but you need a subscription). On this one, at least, the Straggler was in the lead.
Posted at 12:56 PM
IT'S MARCH 10. THE DAY TO SUBSCRIBE. [NRO Staff]
GET 4 FREE ISSUES OF NATIONAL REVIEW!
That's right: We'll send you 4 FREE issues of National Review at absolutely no risk to you. If you're impressed by National Review's superior writing style, analysis, and wit, we'll send you the next 12 issues for a total of 16 in all! for only $19.95. Click here for details.
Posted at 12:41 PM
BROOKHISER ON C-SPAN [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
If you missed it, you can watch Rick's interview here.
Posted at 12:39 PM
BOYCOTT [John Derbyshire]
In re a boycott of Chinese goods, a reader who knows his New Testament better than I do has pointed me to Revelation 18:10-11. Interesting.
Posted at 12:35 PM
WE GIRLS CAN TO ANYTHING--THANKS TO TITLE IX [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
You'all are well-versed on the Title IX issue, so I will spare you. But you will enjoy this ridiculous piece from Saturday's Indianapolis Star, helping to crusade for the no-reform-ever position. Unfortunately, these days the Bush administration is caving to that position.
Posted at 12:25 PM
READ MY LIPS, ONLY NEW USER FEES! [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Alaska's new governor makes a dubious distinction.
Posted at 12:20 PM
COALITION POLITICS [Ramesh Ponnuru]
John Kerry says, "The greatest position of strength is by exercising the best judgement in the pursuit of diplomacy," he said, "not in some trumped-up, so-called coalition of the bribed, the coerced, the bought and the extorted, but in a genuine coalition." Glenn Reynolds zings Kerry for bashing our allies. I'd also point out that for many, many months the demand of Kerry types was that we recruit allies and not go it alone. I don't remember them adding that these allies had to join us for the purest of reasons. This is raising the bar, again.
Posted at 12:18 PM
KAISERBUND, EXPLAINED [Jonah Goldberg]
A few readers have written me to inquire about the word Kaisersbund in my post from earlier this morning. Its not quite a neologism -- though I did add an extra "s" by mistake. My point of reference was the dreikaiserbund orchestrated by Bismarck in the 1870s. Also known as the Three Emperors' League, it was comprised by Austria-Hungary, Russia and Germany. The Dreikaiserbund was dedicated to preserving the status quo in Europe and containing independence movements, democracy etc. I don't pretend to be an expert on the subject. But I liked reading about Bismarck in high school and I remembered it because I think it's a really cool word.
Posted at 12:16 PM
OBLIGATORY [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
If you read Jimmy Carter yesterday, read Ramesh Ponnuru today.
Posted at 12:15 PM
YES [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
I am aware I have exceeded my abortion quota for the day.
Posted at 12:11 PM
AFTER ABORTION ONLINE [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The “PASS Site” (Post Abortion Stress Syndrome (PASS) Support and Research Page) that is mentioned in the link to the previous post is a remarkable project started by a kind-hearted woman named “Jilly.” No typical activist (she considers the site “politically neutral") she set up the website so women who have had abortions could talk to one another. Having had multiple abortions, she knows the loneliness and pain and hopes to help alleviate it for other women who might be too ashamed or turned off to approach someone in person. (I wrote about it a few years ago, when it was a much smaller site--scroll down to #9 here.)
Posted at 12:00 PM
HAVE YOU HUGGED AN ABORTION PROVIDER TODAY? [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Emily Peterson at the “After Abortion” blog site remind us today is National Abortion Provider Appreciation Day--and why women who have had abortions are often not grateful for the experience.
Posted at 11:50 AM
START THE WEEK... [John Derbyshire]
With the following opening paragraph from an article in the March Literary Review. This is one of the few remaining magazines with no web presence at all. It is also one of the few magazines I read cover to cover. You can get a subscription ($84 per annum, airmail) from FREEPOST LON 17199, London SW20 8BR. Here is the paragraph, from an article by Matthew Leeming: "I am staying at the Kabul Intercontinental, which I can safely say is the worst hotel in the world. Two guests have recently drowned in the swimming pool. There is no cold water, let alone hot. Electricity is intermittent. The lifts don't work, so I must get to my room by the service staircase and the kitchen. The only reason I stay here is that the bookshop is excellent and sells Tajik vodka, which gives one a very specialised and unpleasant form of hangover, like a new and even more unpleasant form of consciousness. Journalists stay here because it is expensive and this, they feel, goes some way towards punishing their employers for their discomfort."
Posted at 11:18 AM
ANGRY VIEWERS [Rick Brookhiser]
Angry viewers would presumably include the man who called in while I was in the green room to complain about robots sent to earth by aliens or "some deity," he wasn't sure which.
Posted at 11:02 AM
PUH-LEEZE [Rod Dreher]
The actress Jessica Lange is on CNN right now denouncing the president and the Iraq war. She introduced herself as "a mother, a mother from the Midwest." She's also citing the Pope as a moral authority. You watch: next week, she'll be at a pro-abortion rally denouncing the Pope as an oppressor of women.
Posted at 11:02 AM
"MASS MARRIAGE" [Ramesh Ponnuru]
Stanley's header led me to expect a column on the Moonies.
Posted at 10:51 AM
POST PATRIOT [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The Washington Post Style section has a puff piece on a self-described "patriot" radio host at the federally funded Pacifica. Among her doozies:
"And the United States asks aid groups in Baghdad for civilian satellite coordinates in Iraq" -- pregnant pause here -- "Is it to bomb them or save them?"
Posted at 10:48 AM
FOR THE RECORD [Jonah Goldberg]
I discussed Tears of the Sun in the Goldberg File on Friday. I should have been clear that I haven't actually seen the movie yet. I was referring to Steve Hunter's review of the movie. I plan to see it this week. I bring this up because lots of people are emailing me with references to scenes that I haven't seen and don't want to hear about until I see the movie. In short, don't spoil it for me.
Posted at 10:32 AM
RE: PULSE OF THE NATION [Jonah Goldberg]
Rick -- Actually, I don't think C-Span tilts right anymore. I think that C-Span tilts angry. I remember one caller called it "Complaint-Span" and Brian Lamb burst into laughter. During the Clinton years it tilted to the right because the right was angriest. Now it tilts left because they're the angriest. When I've done C-Span in the last year or two, the callers have been overwhelmingly anti-Bush and anti-war and anti-American (which includes some paleo-libertarian types as well).
As I've written before, my favorite C-Span callers are the ones who begin their diatribes with something like "Thank God for C-Span, it's the only program which reports the truth...." who then seamlessly elide into a stemwinder against big corporate media. What's so funny is that C-Span is entirely funded and run by Big Corporate Media. If C-Span's so great for speaking the truth, and media corporations are so evil, why would they fund such a gadfly?
Posted at 10:26 AM
SOMETHING DIFFERENT, FOR A CHANGE [Stanley Kurtz]
We’re used to people protesting the war, but Martin Kramer reports on a case of someone momentarily silencing a crowd at a prestigious university with a protest against leftist bias in academia. Don’t know if this fellow reads NRO, but looks like someone’s been listening to folks like Martin Kramer, Dan Pipes, and myself.
Posted at 10:18 AM
BEYOND SMOKING GUN [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Jonah, for those who we're not on the net this weekend: there's also the drones Blix didn't deem important.
Posted at 10:17 AM
PARMENIDES FALLACY [Jonah Goldberg]
Phillip Bobbit applies it to Iraq.
Posted at 10:12 AM
JACOBY ON MASS MARRIAGE [Stanley Kurtz]
Boston Globe columnist Jeff Jacoby has an excellent piece out on Goodridge v. Massachusetts Department of Public Health. The is the case that may shortly legalize gay marriage in Massachusetts, thus setting off a major battle in the country at large. Jacoby’s piece not only speaks to the issues involved, it gives detailed and interesting coverage of arguments in the case. The reports I’ve heard all suggest that this liberal court will decide in favor of Goodridge–and gay marriage–-by summer. But the judges have pressed lawyers for the plaintiffs on some key points, and Jacoby reports the very interesting answers.
Posted at 10:11 AM
PULSE OF THE NATION [Rick Brookhiser]
I just did Washington Journal on C-SPAN, touting my forthcoming article in The Atlantic Monthly, "The Mind of George W. Bush." Whatever the polls may say, the left is winning the intensity war, if the call-ins are any indication. The tone of them was all the more remarkable since, in my experience, C-SPAN pulls a right-wingy audience. The majority of calls ranged from uneasily to vehemently anti-war and anti-Bush. There was a lot of talk about Bush's "alcoholic personality" (quick: what do John Quincy Adams, Franklin Pierce, Ulysses Grant, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush have in common, besides being president and having "alcoholic personalities"?).
Posted at 10:06 AM
WAIT A MINUTE! [Jonah Goldberg]
Why aren't chemical and biological cluster bombs a "smoking gun"? Am I missing something, or have we just moved on past the "looking for the smoking gun" phase of this dog and pony show?
Posted at 10:03 AM
HERE'S A GOOD ONE [Jonah Goldberg]
Judging from the use of the phrase "culture things," I assume English is not his first language:
Dear Mr. Goldberg,
Posted at 09:11 AM
JERRY SPRINGER AND ME [Jonah Goldberg]
From Michelle Cottle's New Republic piece (for subscribers only) on Jerry Springer and his possible bid for the Senate:
To run, Springer would give up his much-maligned show, now in its twelfth season (and for which he is paid more than $6 million per year). But he and Ford believe that the lowbrow reputation the show has earned Springer could be a political asset, giving him credibility as a fiery populist battling an elitist political class. While the demographics of Springer fans cross race, gender, and age lines, notes Ford, "the common denominator is income. Jerry's viewers consistently earn less than the national average." Springer adds that, while he may not be the greatest candidate, "I know I can articulate a point of view for tons of people who cannot relate to the Sunday-morning talk shows. I don't know what kind of label you want to put on them: Are they nascar people? I don't want to label, but they're people who just aren't touched [by politics]. And, for all kinds of reasons, I have a connection with them." Springer's voice rises and he fidgets in his chair as he recounts how, on a recent Sunday show, the pundits were sitting around making all the usual jokes about his potential candidacy. "Then one of the guys said, 'Well, if Springer runs, that's the argument against letting everybody vote. Because, if Springer runs--and I think the quote was, 'We'll have all these slack-jawed, low-life hillbillies [voting].'" (The actual quote was from National Review's Jonah Goldberg, warning CNN's Wolf Blitzer of the downside of high turnout: "If Jerry Springer shows up, he'll bring all these new people to the polls. They will be slack-jawed yokels, hicks, weirdos, pervs, and whatnot.") Springer sees his run as "a cultural battle in a sense: elitism versus the mass of Americans." The political establishment, he says, wants you to believe that the only people I would speak to "are the crazies on the show. But it's not. It's the mass of Americans that are just untouched." Only wealthy, politically active voters even show up on the radar of most politicians, he charges. "If every American had to vote, do you think for one second we'd have the laws we have that favor the wealthy in terms of tax breaks and tax shelters and all these things? Of course not. So, when [politicians] give these speeches about how great it would be to have everyone voting, they don't mean it! And they really are scared that, if I run, everyone will come out to vote--then they wouldn't be in office."
Posted at 08:49 AM
MORE ON PRECEDENTS [Jonah Goldberg]
Yes, yes I think precedents are important. But the precedent here is a bit different than the one described by opponents of war. First, we've negotiated with Iraq through the UN for 12 years with nearly twenty binding resolutions. We tried sanctions and containment. We have allies. The UN agrees on the ends of disarmament not the means of how to achieve. Etc etc. The notion that this is a sudden, unilateral, unexplained assault on one country by another defies all reality. That is the precedent we are working with.
Posted at 08:35 AM
CANADA [Jonah Goldberg]
On ABC's "This Week" they billed their exclusive interview with Chretien as a conversation with the Prime Minister of "America's closest ally."
My draw dropped at this bit of inaccurate editorializing until it dawned on me they meant geographically. Sort of like saying "Jonah Goldberg is one of America's biggest conservatives."
Posted at 07:27 AM
THE PRECEDENT DODGE [Jonah Goldberg]
This weekend, Canada's Jean Chretien trotted out the "bad precedent" argument again in his opposition to a war with Iraq. Telling George Stephanoplous that China might follow America's example and simply opt for regime change in Taiwan. While I do believe precedents are important and matter it seems to me this misses the mark in two key aspects.
First of all, the idea that China hasn't invaded Taiwan yet because it lacks a solid precent to invoke is absurd. It isn't the lack of a supporting precedent which primarily keeps China out of Taiwan, it's America's security guarantees. The lack of a precedent didn't keep tanks from rolling over Tibet. I'm sure China cares about what the world thinks to the extent it cares about foreign investment and trade. But, it cares about its core national interests more. And the threat of American retaliation is a greater deterrent in terms of national interest than world opinion is.
Second, the precedent these people are really worried about isn't that other countries might violate the UN some day, but that America might continue to thwart the will of the UN -- which has become a kaisersbund dedicated to curtailing American influence.
Posted at 07:24 AM
NORTH KOREA RUNS A TEST [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Launches missile into Sea of Japan.
Posted at 05:33 AM
FETAL CONSCIOUSNESS [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
Posted at 05:21 AM
Sunday, March 09, 2003
THE ARAB MUSLIM MIND [Rod Dreher]
If you can figure out where this guy is coming from, please tell me. In this fascinating piece from The NYT Magazine, a 23-year-old educated Jordanian tells a reporter how he wants to be either a suicide bomber, or a famous and successful Microsoft programmer. You have to read to the end of the article, and see what this fanatic says about women at the University of Jordan. Most of them are wearing hijabs, but he thinks they're faking it. He despises them because "they want to be like Americans, they want to go on dates." Allah forbid! Notice too how this young man disavows any personal responsibility for himself or his society's situation, because America somehow controls everything. Very instructive, this article.
Posted at 11:24 PM
CLINTON DOLE [John Derbyshire]
Just watched the much-touted Clinton-Dole exchange on 60 Minutes. What a flop! Clinton: "Tax cut for the rich, blah blah blah." Dole: "We know how to spend our money better than Washington, yada yada yada." You'd think a guy who'd been POTUS and a guy who'd been in the Senate for 150 years would have something interesting to say. I hear better stuff than this standing on line at K-Mart.
Posted at 08:00 PM
HAWAIIAN GOOD LUCK SIGNS [Andrew Stuttaford]
Prompted by the post on the North Korean MiGs, a number of readers have written in with reminders of an incident that occurred during the crisis over the USS Pueblo. Apparently the American sailors detained by the North Koreans quickly discovered that their captors did not know the meaning of ‘the finger’. Naturally they made full use of the gesture, explaining to their guards that it was a “Hawaiian good luck sign”. It was only when photographs of them doing that reached America that Pyongyang found out the truth and responded, needless to say, with the usual brutality.
Posted at 01:20 PM
PAPAYA KING CROWNED [Andrew Stuttaford]
“One of the things New Yorkers debate loudly is which is better, Papaya King or Gray’s Papaya. No contest as far as I’m concerned. Gray’s is all about value, Papaya King is all about quality and presentation.”
I think that says it all…
Posted at 01:15 PM
DEAN SUNDAY [Stanley Kurtz]
I just saw Vermont Governor Howard Dean on Face the Nation, and he was superb. Was his position on the war incoherent? Sure. Dean won’t attack Saddam until Iraq’s at the point where North Korea is now. That’s absurd. And Dean thinks deterrence will work on Saddam in the way that it worked with the Soviet Union. That’s ignorant. (Read Kenneth Pollack.) And Dean wants to build up the U.N., even as its refusal to implement its own resolutions turns the institution into a joke. Nonetheless, Dean gave a masterful performance. He parried Russert’s jabs expertly. He came through as a real person, not an artificial persona. And he looked an acted presidential. Dean is breaking out, and that means the Democrats are in big trouble. The face of their party may soon be the dovish man who signed a civil unions bill in a state more liberal than Massachusetts.
Posted at 12:39 PM
BLAIR [Andrew Stuttaford]
Is Tony Blair in deep trouble? Not yet, probably. In a recent piece John O’Sullivan did the math. His view was that the Prime Minister could hang on, at least for now. British journalist, Stephen Pollard (in a WSJ article reproduced on his always highly readable website, just scroll down) seems not to be so sure. But his key, and correct, point is that Iraq is not really the issue:
“The Iraq crisis has provided the glue by which disparate strands of the Labour party – the dispossessed and the never in possession, the anti-Americans, the left and the dross – have been able to join together in their opposition to a prime minister who is viewed by the public as a near-deranged warmonger, and the poodle of a trigger-happy Texan moron. That Iraq is merely the pretext is obvious from the complete failure of the rebels to provide any sort of plan for how they would deal with Saddam.”
But even if the vultures are waiting, it’s still too soon for Blair to feel really threatened. If anything goes wrong, all bets are off. That’s a statement of the obvious, of course, but there is, probably, one other moment of danger for the prime minister. If any invasion is preceded by a prolonged bombing campaign, it is likely that the resulting images of devastation will be broadcast night after night on British TV (Saddam will be only too happy to assist) and, without the political support that is likely to kick in the moment that British troops are actually in battle, a few key resignations from the Labour front bench could provoke a crisis.
Posted at 11:23 AM
EDUCATION WATCH [Andrew Stuttaford]
The class assignment? Apparently, it was to write letters protesting a possible war. Via Instapundit.
Posted at 11:15 AM
CAN COSMO READ? [Andrew Stuttaford]
“Dogs”, Jonah? Shouldn’t you be a little more careful about how you put that?
Posted at 11:13 AM
DEAD TIMES [John J. Miller]
A sentence in today's New York Times, in an article about rock musicians who oppose war with Iraq: "Politics moved into punk and metal, where it offered reasons for adolescent frustrations, and into underground hip-hop, where it has resurfaced periodically among rappers — from Public Enemy to the Roots to Dead Prez — who take seriously the idea of a songwriter as the conscience of the community." Got that? The Times believes a group called Dead Prez is to be taken seriously "as the conscience of the community." Much more interesting--and worthy of the Times--is a portrait of Bush by Elisabeth Bumiller.
Posted at 06:07 AM
HHMM. WHERE HAVE WE HEARD THIS BEFORE? [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The Iranian threat.
Posted at 12:15 AM