OTIS! [Andrew Stuttaford]
Wherever you stand on the great British foxhunting controversy (Tony Blair’s government is forcing through legislation to ban it, for motives that owe little to animal welfare but much to class hatred), there’s no doubt that the debate itself has thrown up an entertaining range of characters for the rest of the world to enjoy.
Here’s an interview with one of the principal activists on the pro-hunting side, one Otis Ferry, the youngest master of fox hounds in the country and, incredibly, the son of Roxy Music’s Bryan Ferry (their first two albums were among the greatest ever recorded, but as Kathryn once told me their music was ‘ancient history’, I had better not continue with this digression).
The interview makes for great reading, not least for this description of what happened (initially) to Otis after he stormed the chamber of the House of Commons:
“Instead of being killed, he was tackled to the ground by attendants wearing knickerbockers and tights, then taken off to office of the Serjeant at Arms. “It was actually quite comical as they tried to grapple us with their swords. Afterwards, they were charming and very polite, giving us their chairs. They brought us chicken chow mein and shepherd’s pie to eat, and let us watch the football. It was all very civilised.”
A sense of civility, alas, that is doomed by the times in which we live.
Posted at 02:43 PM
REPORT FROM AFGHANISTAN [Peter Robinson]
Three years ago? The MSM were predicting that American forces would get bogged down during the Afghan winter, fall prey to whatever it was that prevented the British from conquering Afghanistan a century ago, or free only Kabul while finding themselves forced to permit the rest of the country to remain in the grip of warlords. Next month? Presidential elections will take place throughout Afghanistan.
For the best report--by far the best report--on the upcoming elections that I've been able to find anywhere on the web, go to Oxblog (click here), go to Friday's entries, then scroll down to the item that begins, "THE ALL-IMPORTANT ELECTIONS: In Afghanistan, not the United States. Our swashbuckling Afghan correspondent delves into admirable detail...."
Posted at 02:38 PM
AZNAR@AEI [Michael Novak]
Former Prime Minister of Spain, Jose Maria Aznar, spoke at breakfast Friday morning at AEI and predicted three spectacular terrorist events in the near future. First, a major destructive action in the United States before election day on November 2, possibly during the last 72 hours, for massive effect in causing confusion and commotion. Second, a dramatic escalation of action in Iraq leading up to November 2, and again in late December and early January to head off the Iraqi election at the end of January. Third, a spectacular attack in the United Kingdom next May to disrupt the re-election campaign of PM Tony Blair.
Aznar's main subject was the serious gap between European elites (and even European popular opinion) and the United States. This gap originated before Bush and it will continue for many years to come. But Americans need seriously to reach out to Europeans, assisting and encouraging our friends (not only fair-weather friends, but friends in difficult times), and making clear to others that gratuitous obstructionism toward the United States is not cost-free.
Posted at 02:13 PM
JUDGE RICHARD S. ARNOLD, RIP [Jonathan H. Adler]
The Honorable Richard S. Arnold, of the U.S. Court of Appeals of the Eighth Circuit, passed away at age 68. Former Arnold clerk Rick Garnett, now a Notre Dame law professor, remembers Judge Arnold here. Judge Arnold answered 20 Questions on "How Appealing" here.
Posted at 02:11 PM
LOWRY ON THE NEWSHOUR [Jonathan H. Adler]
Rich did well on the Newshour last night. Even my exceedingly liberal mother thought he was effective and insightful.
Posted at 01:57 PM
"BANNING" THE BIBLE [Jonathan H. Adler]
Of course no one seeks to prohibit the sale or distribution of the bible. Yet, Eugene Volokh notes that by the American Library Association's definition some do seek to "ban" the bible, insofar as they seek to have religious works removed from public schools. It's an interesting post.
Posted at 01:54 PM
BEHIND THE SCENES OF BUSH V. GORE [Jonathan Adler]
Will Baude is not persuaded by the Vanity Fair "expose" on Bush v. Gore. He enjoyed the judicial gossip, but found the repeated partisan jabs lacked substantive support in the narrative. All four for the former Supreme Court clerks who agreed to interviews clerked for dissenting judges. For those interested, the article is online here. (LvVC)
Posted at 01:53 PM
AT LEAST TWO SUPREME COURT SEATS TO BE FILLED IN THE NEXT FOUR YEARS [KJL]
Posted at 01:51 PM
LEFT, RIGHT, CENTER [Cliff May]
I went down to NPR’s studios yesterday to take part in “Left, Right and Center,” a debate show produced by KCRW in California and distributed to a national audience.
I was subbing – inadequately but I did my darnedest – for the esteemed John O’Sullivan who, I’m guessing, couldn’t make it as he was busy preparing for the Jewish holidays. (David Frum, I’m told, also is a veteran of this show. Don’t know why he couldn’t manage to do a little work prior to sundown, but that’s between David and K-Lo, none of my business.)
”Left, Right and Center” is somewhat misnamed: Other than John, the other regulars are Robert Scheer, an unreconstructed old leftist, Matt Miller, a New Democrat, and Arianna Huffington, a Nouveau Democrat, you might say.
So the show really should be called “Left, Left-er, Left-est and Center Right,” but I suppose that combination of words wouldn’t fall comfortably on the ear.
I’m told that when this program started Arianna was a Proud Woman of the Right. She drifted – or maybe jetted – to the left under the influence of Warren Beatty and the Beats (or something like that) which is how the dislocation came about.
What struck me oddest yesterday was this: Bob Scheer is a strong supporter of John Kerry and he was very buoyed by the Senator’s recent statements which, he insisted, is causing a shift in the electoral tectonics. As evidence of that, he cited some poll taken in California which, I interrupted him to point out, is not exactly a bellwether state.
But Bob’s analysis of the war in Iraq – like that of Jimmy Carter and his bud, Michael Moore – is that Iraq is Vietnam, America is the problem not the solution, we’re defeated, (as we deserve to be), it’s a quagmire, we should get out as quick as we can so no more working class boys have to die for a pack of lies.
That hardly echoes what Sen. Kerry is saying. Yet Scheer doesn’t say he disagrees with Kerry. I suppose that means he thinks Kerry will come around to his view later, after he’s been elected. Or maybe he thinks that Kerry agrees with him now but has determined that it would be unwise to speak candidly in the midst of a tight election campaign. And Bob sees nothing wrong with that.
In other words, the question for voters may be less whether John Kerry is flip-flopping and more whether he believes what he is saying or whether he believes what his key supporters are saying.
Posted at 01:40 PM
NOMINATION NATION [Jonathan H. Adler]
A new blog devoted exclusively to judicial nominations.
Posted at 01:17 PM
I BOW TO THE BLACK HOLE OF GEEKINESS [Jonah Goldberg]
Help me...Spock....help me Spock.... It's just so geeky.
Posted at 07:53 AM
Friday, September 24, 2004
NOT ESTHER'S DAY [KJL]
Madonna's banned from Egypt--because she visited Israel.
Posted at 03:15 PM
KABBALAH’S A CULT, NOT JUDAISM [KJL]
So says Yossi Klein Halevi in the L.A. Times.
Posted at 03:13 PM
NATIONAL EMERGENCY [Andrew Stuttaford]
Yes, Kathryn, that's a great cause, but what would Elizabeth Dole say? I mean, are those soldiers going to be carded?
Posted at 03:01 PM
RE: LOWRY'S BIG JUMP [KJL]
His partner in crime/insanity this weekend just pointed out the relative safety of skydiving to me.
Posted at 03:00 PM
RICH'S PLUMMET - TWO VIEWS [Andrew Stuttaford]
"The explanation used to be simple: jumpers were crazy! Some psychologists talked of Freudian death wishes while others believed in fear displacement or denying one fear in their lives by directing their attention to another more manageable one. Others theorized that participants in high risk sports were acting out psychopathic fantasies in an attempt to make up for feelings of inadequacy or to demonstrate omnipotence."
"Fortunately, in the last 25 years, the shrinks have decided that pursuing a high risk sport is not all that bad... Bruce Ogilvie, professor emeritus of psychology at San Jose State University conducted a study of 293 high-risk competitors including skydivers, race car drivers, fencers and aerobatic pilots in 1973 using psychological batteries and personal interviews. Ogilvie found risk-takers to be success oriented, strongly extroverted, above average in abstract ability and superior in intelligence when compared to the general population. He found these athletes are rarely reckless in their risk taking; their risk-taking is cool and calculated. He estimates that 6% of the athletes compete out of anger or out of deep feelings of inferiority or because they are trying to prove something about themselves. The other 94% are emotionally stable."
I report. You decide.
Posted at 02:58 PM
NATIONAL EMERGENCY [KJL]
Our soldiers need beer!
Posted at 02:47 PM
CRINGE EN FOLK . . . [Jack Fowler]
Is an anagram for, that’s right, Florence King, and although not the Queen’s English, it somehow captures the essence of NR’s retired curmudgeon, whose wonderful book, STET, Damnit! The Misanthrope’s Corner, 1991 to 2002, is available only from NR, and may/must be ordered here(securely!). You owe it to yourself to get it.
Posted at 02:17 PM
WOMEN AND THE ELECTION [KJL]
Barbara Comstock will be on FNC at 2:30.
Posted at 02:01 PM
MILES GONE BY [Jack Fowler]
Get it while it’s hot – and personally autographed by Bill Buckley. Order here.
Posted at 01:58 PM
WHY SO *&^%&$# HIGH? [KJL]
Those among us who have to do adult things like pay tuitions will appreciate Richard Vedder's piece in the current issue of NRODT.
Posted at 01:46 PM
THE TWO BRINKLEYS [Tim Graham]
K-Lo, compare Brinkley in the Times today to this Washington Post Book World summary of Brinkley's paperback edition of "Tour of Duty" last Sunday:
In a new introduction to the updated edition of this "story of one young American's Vietnam War odyssey," eminent historian Brinkley makes his position on recent campaign maneuvers clear: "A group called Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, aided by Republican money, formed to challenge Kerry on everything from whether he deserved his first Purple Heart to whether he committed treason when he testified about atrocities in front of J. William Fulbright's Senate Foreign Relations Committee in April 1971. But it was too late. The reality of Kerry's 'Band of Brothers' on the campaign trail . . . had already seared itself on the American imagination. The only question that remained following the Democratic Convention in Boston was whether Kerry's moving Vietnam-era patriotism would help send him to the White House."
Posted at 01:40 PM
BLUE SKY, BLACK DEATH [John Derbyshire]
Rich: Good luck with the skydiving. Here is your primer .
The main thing is to A-R-C-H. This is important.
Posted at 01:27 PM
RE: RED NATION [John Derbyshire]
Many thanks to reader Kathy for pointing me to this site , which gives up-to-date red/blue state maps.
Says Kathy: "You can even customize the map if you want, by omitting certain pollsters or methods (for example, only consider likely voter polls, don't include the Zogby Interactive, etc.) I find it endlessly fascinating. But then, I'm a pathetic politics obsessive."
Nothing pathetic about it, Ma'am. Politics moves the world.
Posted at 01:18 PM
THEM DANGED FURRINERS [John Derbyshire]
Good old British xenophobia comes crashing through the surface in today's Telegraph: "Though a stern TRUE-BORN ENGLISHMAN, and fully prejudiced against all other nations, he had discernment enough to see, and candour enough to censure, the cold reserve too common among Englishmen towards strangers."----Boswell, Life of Johnson.
Posted at 01:13 PM
SKYDIVING [Rich Lowry]
I'm staying in DC over the weekend to go skydiving on Saturday. It's something I've always wanted to do, and I'm finally going to take the plunge...
Posted at 01:10 PM
IT'S TIME [KJL]
for a new issue of NRODT!
Have you subscribed? Here's the sign-up link for NR Digital only. Here's the link for NR on Dead Tree on paper (which includes Digital access).
Posted at 12:40 PM
WIKIPEDIA [Jonah Goldberg]
I'm a big fan of it and they're holding a fundraiser . Just an FYI.
Posted at 12:38 PM
FREAKY OPTICAL TIME-WASTER [ Jonah Goldberg ]
This is safe for the office and kids -- though it might cause seizures in .00001% of the population.
Posted at 12:22 PM
KRAUTHAMMER [ Jonah Goldberg]
You know, I realize I was a bit iffy on the politics of Zell Miller's speech -- I always loved the content. But after reading stuff like Krauthammer's column and this thread on Instapundit it makes me feel like the good Senator was under-Zelling it.
Posted at 12:20 PM
RATHER, CNN ETC [Jonah Goldberg]
I'm scheduled to be on CNN's Reliable Sources -- with Frank Rich -- this Sunday around 11:20 my time. Hey, if you can have personal truths, you can have personal time too.
Posted at 12:10 PM
Has Brinkley, polls, Milbank and more.
Posted at 12:06 PM
YUP [Jonah Goldberg]
From a reader:
Ever just think how the rest of the mainstream media would be acting now if say Foxnews had used obviously forged documents from a Kerry- hating lunatic to run an attack on John Kerry. The laid-back journalistic snipes that CBS has endured and the all but nonexistent calls for Rather's and his producers' firing would be a dim flickering candle next to the supernova intensity of the effort to discredit Foxnews and have anyone remotely connected to the story, including the cameraman working that fateful day fired immediately. god only knows they never would have tolerated Rather's stonewalling and would certainly be making more of his use of "unimpeachable source" now.
Posted at 12:06 PM
UM. WHO PAINTED THE KERRY THE WAR HERO PORTRAIT? [KJL]
If there was a myth, didn't Doug Brinkley write it? He says int he Times today: "
Every American now knows that there's something really screwy about George Bush and the National Guard, and they know that John Kerry was not the war hero we thought he was," said Douglas Brinkley, the historian and author of a friendly biography of Mr. Kerry's war years, acknowledging that Mr. Kerry's opponents had succeeded in raising questions about his service.
Posted at 12:03 PM
CANCER DETECTORS [ Jonah Goldberg]
You've probably seen the news that dogs can detect cancer . This is not news to many of us who follow these sorts of things. Dogs have long been able to detect when something's wrong with their masters. In fact, while I don't know if Cosmo can smell cancer cells, he can smell all sorts of miraculous things, including sloth, villainy, article deadlines and beef jerky. Okay the last one isn't that impressive, but he really likes smelling it.
Posted at 12:02 PM
RE: IRAQI GRATITUDE [Andy McCarthy]
John, I hesitate to grapple with you, particularly where numbers are involved. But I would say a few things in response.
First, Iraqi gratitude is not the functional equivalent of an Iraqi desire that we remain in their country. It is quite possible -- indeed, it's probably common -- for an Iraqi to acknowledge being in our debt for deposing Saddam and to be anxious for us to leave. The poll question: "Do you want the Americans to leave?" (assuming it was asked that way) implicates at least equally the respondent's national pride (to be able to go it alone) as it does what you seem to draw from it -- viz., a resentment that excludes feelings of gratitude. I don't read a wish that our presence was no more -- a wish that is shared by a vast majority of Americans, including probably both of us -- as necessarily conveying ingratitude.
Second, though you did not quote this part of what I said, I did acknowledge that there are a lot of malcontents. I also think the American people's perception will continue to be that the number of ingrates is substantial, whether that is true or not, because of the news coverage. BUT, in the middle of a war, the head of an allied nation we would like to see succeed came to the U.S. and expressed lavish thanks on behalf of himself and his countrymen -- much like what our own President did in England a few months ago notwithstanding that there is a substantial and loud opposition in this country. Under those circumstances, and especially after Kerry -- about a nano-second after Allawi was done -- gave an obnoxious response, unbecoming of someone who would represent the U.S. to the world, I felt a bit small for having effectively accused ALL Iraqis of ingratitude.
Allawi says he understands what is going on in his entire country better than the snippets we have been shown in the media (and perhaps even in the public opinion polls). I think he should get the benefit of the doubt at this point. Not necessarily forever, but at least for now.
Posted at 12:00 PM
LEHRER [Rich Lowry]
FYI: I'm scheduled to be on the NewsHour tonight, subbing for David Brooks.
Posted at 10:47 AM
DOUBLE STANDARD, AGAIN [Rich Lowry]
I love how the Republicans' statements in this Washington Post “analysis” piece are compared to those that characterized the era of “the McCarthy communist hunt,” but the Dem statements that what Republicans say is “un-American” and “un-democratic” passes without comment. If a GOPer used the word “un-American,” it would, of course, generate unending headlines.
Posted at 10:45 AM
JUDICIAL SURRENDER [Jonathan H. Adler]
It seems Senate Republicans might not hold another round of cloture votes on Bush's filibustered judicial nominees after all, as they have too much else to do.
Posted at 10:13 AM
REGULAR FOLKS KNOW A LOT [John Derbyshire]
Sorry, forgot to include the link to Larry's TAS piece. Here you go.
(Magazine folk, by the way, sling acronyms around with blithe abandon. TAS = The American Spectator, TNR = The New Republic, NYRB = New York Review of Books, etc. etc.)
Posted at 10:12 AM
BEHIND THE TIMES [Tim Graham]
It might seem quaint, but someone at the New York Times still has a hopeful heart for "Marxist-leaning" filmmakers and their search for a communist utopia, in this case in Argentina.
Posted at 10:08 AM
EMBARRASSED? [Andrew Stuttaford]
In between speculating on an October surprise, Teresa Heinz Kerry tells a fundraiser that she was 'embarrassed' to receive the George Bush tax cuts. Ah, I see. Perhaps that is why she has been so reluctant to release her full tax returns.
Oh, the shame of it.
Posted at 10:07 AM
RED NATION [John Derbyshire]
I know we're not supposed to crow prematurely, but I couldn't repress a thrill of pleasure on seeing the red-blue election map on page 8 of today's New York Post (America's Newspaper of Record). I can't raise it on the web site, but it looks WONDERFUL -- a sea of red with some blue patches in the corners. Bottom line: with 270 electoral-college votes needed to win, W is currently looking at a pretty secure 264, Kerry at 196, with 78 up for grabs. Kerry will need to win ALL the up-for-grabs states to win. All right, all right, a lot of things can happen in 39 days, but carpe diem -- I'm happy this morning.
Posted at 10:03 AM
ORIGINS OF RATHERGATE [John Derbyshire]
A fine piece by Larry Henry in TAS this morning, on the sheltered lives that media panjandrums live.
"CONSIDER HOW MUCH REGULAR FOLKS KNOW. If you have not been famous or otherwise insulated, you have likely had half a dozen jobs by the age of 50. You have perhaps started, or tried to start, your own business. You have moved at least four times in adulthood, and bought and sold perhaps that many houses or condos, You have researched a number of areas of the country and lived in two or three (and not just Washington, New York, and Los Angeles). You have perhaps served a military hitch. You have had children in public schools or you've been home-schooling; you've raised funds for a church or a lodge or a Boy Scout troop. In some context or other, you have sold something door to door, published a newsletter, sold advertising, served on a committee, had a hand in hiring and firing. If you've ever had a hobby, you probably have an expert education in something like motorcycle mechanics, photography, flying, firearms, railroad history, or ornithology."
You probably even know the difference between fixed and proportional spacing...
Posted at 10:01 AM
DERB RADIO [John Derbyshire]
My house is besieged by throngs of angry people waving placards and demanding to know when Derb Radio will be on the air again. I am sorry; we have had some technical difficulties associated with our RNC coverage (stuff got lost); normal service will be restored as soon as possible.
Posted at 10:00 AM
RE: NESTED POLYGONS [John Derbyshire]
I have IMPROVED the solution page for my August math puzzle, mainly by adding a very spiffy diagram (which cost me half an hour of fiddling with Mathematica). See here
Posted at 09:58 AM
IRAQI GRATITUDE [John Derbyshire]
Andy: You say: "Allawi could not have been more grateful today, and he maintains that that is how the vast majority of Iraqis feel. He speaks for Iraq, and I know of no reason at this point not to take him at his word on this."
Well, there have been opinion polls -- see here. Samples: "A Gallup poll conducted mostly in late March-- before the recent sieges of Fallujah and Najaf-- showed that 'a solid majority support an immediate military pullout' ... Fifty-seven percent said the coalition should 'leave immediately' rather than 'stay longer' (36 percent). Among respondents in Shi'ite and Sunni Arab areas-- that is, leaving out Kurdish respondents-- the numbers favoring an immediate pullout were even higher: 61 percent to 30 percent among Shi'ites and 65 percent to 27 percent among Sunnis. In Baghdad, where U.S. forces are concentrated, the numbers were highest of all: 75 percent favored an immediate pullout, with only 21 percent opposed. ... Meanwhile, according to a new poll from the Iraq Center for Research and Strategic Studies, which is partly funded by the State Department and has coordinated its work with the Coalition Provisional Authority, more than half of all Iraqis -- including the Kurds -- want an immediate withdrawal of U.S. forces, up from 17 percent last October. The same poll found that 68 percent of Iraqis support Moqtada al-Sadr, including a third who say they 'strongly support' him..."
Hard to square with Allawi's assertion that "the vast majority of Iraqis" are "grateful" to us.
Posted at 09:56 AM
TERESA [Jonah Goldberg]
I base this on next to nothing -- a few blogger posts, the latest Drudge headline etc -- but I can't shake the feeling that Teresa's heading for her moment in the media spotlight, and the lighting won't compliment her.
Posted at 09:52 AM
AFFIRMATIVE ACTION CAUSES CANCER [Roger Clegg]
Buried in this long obit of the late, great Johnny Ramone is the revelation that, in the 1970s, Mr. Ramone “lost his [construction] job because of affirmative action.” And last week he died of prostate cancer. Coincidence? I don’t think so.
Posted at 09:48 AM
CRUISAPALOOZA [Jack Fowler]
Three more cabins booked (203 and counting!) since Monday – that’s three less (or is it fewer?) for you to reserve on what will be the most rockin’ seafaring extravaganza of the year. I speak of course of the National Review 2004 Post-Election Caribbean Cruise, of which you can find more information, or book that luxury stateroom, right here.
Posted at 09:45 AM
NONSENSE [ Jonah Goldberg ]
Richard Cohen makes some fair points today. This is not one of them:
The bloggers who were quick to spot the typographical discrepancies in CBS's tainted documents did their job. But it is only a piece of the larger job, which is to report the news. This is what Rather and CBS did -- not well enough, I grant you. But what animated them was good old-fashioned lust for the scoop. Believe me, those of us who have known such lust know it is blind. Rather would have done the same story on Kerry. It as, as Mario Puzo once pointed out in a somewhat different context, nothing personal. Just business.
I have no doubt that lust for a scoop was part of the story, part of the equation, one of the motives. But the motive wasn't simply for a scoop, it was for an anti-Bush scoop. And, frankly, I am flummoxed that Cohen or any of the other journalistic bigwigs circling around Dan or attacking Bush are incapable of admitting this. The race for the scoop and the race to nail Bush are not incompatible theories of the case; they are mutually reinforcing.
Posted at 09:06 AM
EJ'S ANGER [ Jonah Goldberg ]
EJ Dionne complains about Bush's soft treatment by the press. That's right. He runs through a list of "distortions" and lies that Bush supposedly gets away with. The weird thing: None of them seem that bad or outrageous. Here's his biggest complaint:
At the top of my personal hit parade of Bush Distortions is a statement the president has made over and over, notably during his speech at the Republican National Convention. "If you say the heart and soul of America is found in Hollywood," Bush said to loud cheers, "I'm afraid you are not the candidate of conservative values."
Maybe it's me, but who cares? That was a who's who of Hollywood types -- from whom Kerry raises vast sums of money. The real distortion was that Kerry ever said he was the candidate of conservative values in the first place. His other examples don't stun me either. I'm not saying there isn't a kernel of truth to EJ's complaint, but he surely knows that none of these things are even remotely outside the norm of presidential elections.
Besides, I don't recall any rage from him about the press not sufficiently clarifying the accusation that the Contract with America would destroy All Human Life. Okay that is a distortion too. But some did call it genocide or compare it to the Holocaust. And Clinton et al did say Newt wanted to eradicated Medicare etc etc. And during this campaign how many distortions have flowed forth about Bush "lying," hatching this scheme in Texas etc etc.
Posted at 08:49 AM
BOYCOTT? [John J. Miller]
Here's how one person (a friend of mine) is trying to get the attention of CBS and its affiliates.
"I have been a viewer of WGCL 46 and CBS's news programs. I have been watching CBS Evening News and 60 Minutes for years. I regret that I will no longer be able to watch any news programs on WGCL until Dan Rather and Mary Mapes no longer work at CBS News, and a full apology has been issued (not the half hearted apology already issued). They have abused the trust that I and the rest of the public have put in them. They have either accepted as fact documents of dubious origin out of incompetence, or they accepted them for ideological reasons. Either case is unacceptable.
Posted at 05:12 AM
Thursday, September 23, 2004
LEFT AND RIGHT ON CAMPUS [Rick Brookhiser]
I spoke last night to the Yale Political Union, asserting that the Terror War was the main foreign policy priority of the United States.
If an Ivy League campus is any indication, liberals are maintaining discipline in the face of all temptations to dally with Nader. The Liberal Party of YPU announced that it had held a debate on the topic (borrowed from the website), Resolved: John Kerry Is a D********* But I'm Voting For Him Anyway. It passed, 30-1. Students are by nature self-immolating; how much wider the margin must be among adults.
After the meeting, I enjoyed the hospitality of my band of brothers, the Party of the Right. Pour le droit.
Posted at 11:10 PM
THE DHIMMI NATION: [Rod Dreher]
You really can't make this up. According to The Guardian: The Church of England said yesterday that police counter-terrorism operations were directed disproportionately against Muslims and risked alienating them.
Tomorrow: the Church of England discovers that Eskimos suffer disproportionately from cold weather.
Posted at 10:28 PM
BERATING OUR PRESENCE IN IRAQ [Andy McCarthy]
K-Lo is, as usual, too nice about my article today on the question of whether the war in Iraq is, as Kerry argues, a "diversion." I think, though, that Iraqi Prime Minister Allawi's speech this morning requires re-thinking something I suggested.
I wrote that the American people are not likely to be persuaded to pursue the war against militant Islam in other countries if they think our main goal is to liberate those who "berate our presence, after we undertake the heavy lifting of wresting their countries from despots and terrorists." To the contrary, Allawi was extraordiarily gracious and humble today about the enormous help Iraq has gotten from the United States.
The prevailing image of liberated Iraq in our country tends to be of Sadr, the terrorists, and those who seem constantly to be whining about the U.S. "occupation." But I should have taken into account that this image could just as easily be a media creation as reality. The media stress the negative in Iraq, and we don't see much coverage of the successes or of people who are thrilled with what the U.S. has done.
Allawi could not have been more grateful today, and he maintains that that is how the vast majority of Iraqis feel. He speaks for Iraq, and I know of no reason at this point not to take him at his word on this. Whether what he said will change many minds here, who knows? Even assuming he's right, there are still a lot of malcontents. And it doesn't change my basic argument -- for Americans to support it, the war has to be predominantly about U.S. national security, not democratizing the Middle East. But today is not the first time Allawi has thanked the U.S., and, on reflection, I think it was wrong for me to over-simplify as if all the Iraqis are ingrates. I don't think they are, and I should have made my point without such a suggestion.
Posted at 10:17 PM
OSAMA IN OCT. [KJL]
I'll think I might be praying Jim Robbins is right and Osama is long dead until E-Day.
Posted at 07:18 PM
TERESA PREDICTS OCTOBER SURPRISE [KJL]
Hat tip: Drudge
Posted at 07:11 PM
THAT CORNER POST [Ramesh Ponnuru]
I promised earlier today about Kerry's Social Security attack on Bush--and I know you've all been breathless with anticipation--has gotten too long. I'll send it to K-Lo and see if she posts it as an article for tomorrow's NRO.
Posted at 07:07 PM
OVER AT THE NYTIMES [KJL]
An observant reader points out:
New York Times' media bias continues to worsen, even without Howell Raines. Check out today's front page article by Edmund Andrews, titled "Deal in Congress to Keep Tax Cuts, Widening Deficit". You would think the bill was titled the "budget deficit expansion act," as the actual policy enacted -- extending the lower- and middle-income tax cuts from 2001-- is virtually ignored. You have to wade through four paragraphs and two Charles Rangel quotes before Andrews even bothers to tell us which taxes are being cut!
Posted at 06:29 PM
"SUGARCOATED" CORRECTION [KJL]
The timing was very off on the McAuliffe information. My apologies.
We feel like CBS this afternoon (with a lot less staff, and money). And, unlike CBS, we quickly correct and apologize as soon as we know we were wrong.
Posted at 05:49 PM
RATHER'S MEDIA DEFENDERS [Tim Graham]
Posted at 05:36 PM
WE NEED THE PATRIOT ACT [KJL]
Here's a counter to the ACLU's annoying and misleading ad anti-Patriot Act ad campaign.
Posted at 05:20 PM
PULLING OUT OF IRAQ [John Derbyshire]
Rich: That's all very well. The trouble with NOT pulling out of Iraq is that while we're locked up there, our ability to do anything big anywhere else is very severely constrained by shortage of resources.
And the probability that we are going to need to do something big somewhere else in the next four years, by way of prosecuting the War on Terror, is, it seems to me, large.
Posted at 05:09 PM
NESTED POLYGONS [John Derbyshire]
Here is a solution to the math puzzle in my August Diary.
Posted at 05:04 PM
NOVAK [Rich Lowry]
More catching up: The thing to realize about that Monday column predicting a pull-out is that his administration sources tend to be people disgruntled with the administration's policy. So you need to discount heavily in light of that. I just checked in with a very plugged-in Pentagon type. Here's roughly how it went. Me: “So what was the deal with that Novak column earlier in the week?” Type: “What Novak column?” Me: “He wrote a column saying we are going to pull out after the election.” Type: “Pull out of Iraq?” Me: “Yeah, pull out of Iraq.” Type: LAUGHTER.
Posted at 04:44 PM
WHO IS THIS ALLAWI GUY ANYWAY? [KJL]
Telling, too, that W. basically has to tell the press to ask the Iraqi prime minister questions.
Posted at 04:17 PM
Jim Geraghty notes a very interesting McAuliffe-CBS coincidence.
Posted at 03:49 PM
RE: WHAT THE HECK DOES HE KNOW? HE'S JUST THE PM OF IRAQ [KJL]
My favorite part of the day was in the Rose Garden when the reporters kept asking Bush about how horribly things were going and Bush finally said (paraphrasing here) "because I ask him and talk to him," referring to Allawi, "and I believe him," he said looking right at the reporter. It was great. Similarly, another reporter asked Bush another question about how the conditions in Iraq, he was flustered and said "why don't you ask him" referring again to Allawi, "you have the Prime Minister of Iraq here, why ask me?" Again, great point. You could see that the reporters didn't care a bit about what Allawi had to say about what his firsthand impression of Iraq was, they just wanted to hammer Bush over and over. I don't think they succeeded. It was pretty obvious they were desperate to ignore Allawi and the positive message he was bringing.
Posted at 03:45 PM
SF EVENT [Ramesh Ponnuru]
One of the folks who came to the NRO West Coast bash on Monday night asked me to mention an event he's holding tonight--a talk by Joseph Pearce about his new book on Oscar Wilde. I can't make it myself, but there you go.
Posted at 03:23 PM
RE PLANE TRUTHS [Cliff May]
From an associate and NRO reader:
“Now for fun -- try and land at Dulles on a foreign passport and deal with the Homeland Security people there. They are a nightmare -- just ask some of the pure Iraqi people who have been interrogated for 4 or 5 hours by officials on their way OUT of the US. A number of them have missed their planes as a result. I am a white male, Canadian, semi-respectable looking and I have been grilled by surly officials on almost every occasion.
“The Israelis are tough -- but at least they're reasonable pleasant when they grill you.”
Posted at 03:17 PM
WHAT ALL THE NR INTERNS ARE WEARING THIS YEAR [ Jonah Goldberg]
Actually, in all seriousness, if either Mrs. Bush or Mrs. Kerry wore this how badly do you think their husbands would lose the election?
Posted at 03:11 PM
PLEDGE BILL PASSES HOUSE [Ramesh Ponnuru]
The House voted 247-173 to remove jurisdiction from the federal courts, including the Supreme Court, over the constitutionality of the Pledge of Allegiance. The opponents suggested that assaults on the power of the Supreme Court threaten, basically, to end liberty in America. My take on the jurisdiction-stripping idea, from back in 2002, can be found here.
Posted at 03:10 PM
ALLAWI LIED! [KJL ]
Doing adult things here at NRWHQS, my anger at John Kerry is in delayed reaction mode. But here’s a passing thought: John Kerry essentially calls the prime minister of Iraq a liar (Rich—maybe the Left is moving from Bush Lied! to Allawi Lied!). Remember how nuts the media went when W. didn’t ace a pop quiz on foreign leaders names back in 2000? Comparatively, Kerry's Allawi response is something of actual substance there should be a little feeding frenzy over. There won’t be though, since the coverage seems to take the Kerry spin.
Posted at 03:08 PM
ADS [Rich Lowry]
I'm still catching up on all this stuff, but the windsurfing ad strikes me as amusing, accurate, and not particularly negative as these things go. The Kerry people keep wanting to argue that it is out of bounds, too negative and too personal to criticize him for constantly changing his positions. Their counter ad is dire and whiny. Ads attacking other ads are almost always a waste of time. Meanwhile, the Swift Boat ads have struck me as less and less good. Those inital ads were so striking and powerful because those guys were speaking so compellingly right into the camera. The newer ads feel more like typical negative ads, so I'm guessing don't pack the same kind of punch.
Posted at 03:06 PM
BUSH & ALLAWI [Rich Lowry]
This isn't the most imporant point in the world, but there is still something extraordinary about Bush doing a Rose Garden press conference and calling on reporters from Iraq. Also, I just can't help but laugh at the odd (and kind of endearing) way Bush puts things--we can't find Zarkawi because “he's hiding”; Allawi knows what's going on in Iraq because “he lives there”; and, of course, suicide bombers are “suiciders.”
Posted at 03:00 PM
ATTN NOTRE DAME ALUMS [Rich Lowry]
You should check out, and consider contributing to, The Irish Rover, the new conservative publication on campus. It is a quality product, and its editors and reporters are quite impressive. They need your help...
Posted at 02:13 PM
NOTRE DAME AFTER REPORT [Rich Lowry]
It was a great crowd (we were in the theater that is in the same building where George Gipp got sick, I understand), and they did turn people away at the door. Here was my moral victory: David Corn didn't once accuse Bush of “lying” in the run-up to the war, although he made one half-hearted reference to misleading the public toward the end. This shows that even Corn, who wrote a whole book on this topic, apparently considers the “Bush lied” case so difficult to defend that he didn't want to bother. He focused instead on the incompetence of the managenment of the war, where I think there are indeed legitmate criticisms to be made--so this was stronger ground for him. Also, the crowd was tilted pretty strongly in his direction and was, hate to say, more sour and ill-mannered than any I have yet encountered in our debates. I was briefly heckled and probably made my most persuasive point when I gratuitously attacked the University of Michigan football team. (It's all about the pandering!) But I hammered away, and it was truly a joy to be on campus and meet a lot of extraordinary kids.
Posted at 02:10 PM
ME=MIA [Jonah Goldberg]
Sorry I haven't been around. I had to get new tires for my car. Among the worst things about adulthood are paying for things like new tires. All you get is the status quo ante. Anyway, I gotta jam on the syndicated column and G-File. Back in a bit.
Posted at 02:07 PM
WINDSURFING, ETC. [KJL]
A few things: Responding to some readers here: Because JJM and I had some quick initial reax to the windsurfing ads, does not make that the official NR position. In fact, check out Jim Geraghty on it.
And, by the way, as I hear from many people on the ads today, I'm taking it more in stride. Still, I do hope administration types are reading McCarthy today.
And speaking of the Kerry Spot: I think Jim is right-on re: Kerry today. The man was going to keep mostly silent today. Would have been a good move.
Posted at 01:54 PM
PLANE TRUTHS [Cliff May]
I’m writing this while sitting in a plane, which is sitting on the tarmac at whatever they call the airport here in Toronto.
Getting from Washington to Toronto yesterday was painless – no more difficult or time-consuming than getting from Washington to New York. But getting back into the U.S. this morning – or what remains of this morning--has been a nightmare.
I waited on what I believe to have been the longest line I’ve ever waited on in my not-young life. More than two hours of standing and shuffling along. I would not voluntarily wait that long to see Michael Moore get his butt kicked by Arianna Huffington. (I would, however, pay good money for a front-row seat to such entertainment.)
I was told that the holdup was the fault of U.S. Customs and Immigration (through which they process you in Canada, rather than when you get back on U.S. soil). Evidently, they had too few immigrations officers on duty today. Nearly every flight, including the one I’m on, has been delayed. Hundreds of work hours have been lost.
Clearly, the bureaucracy is not up to the task of processing even routine travelers from an industrialized neighboring nation. If this says anything about the efficiency of the new Department of Homeland Security, be worried, be very worried.
If this says anything about the nature of bureaucracies – including American bureaucracies – let’s keep up the drumbeat against a national health care system. (I guess I should take solace from the fact that I haven’t been waiting for an appendectomy.)
OK, new subject: The flight attendant has just handed me a couple of newspapers. The front page of the National Post has a story about Fairuz Yamulky of Calgary, a 38-year-old mother of two who was working for a company that does supply work for the US military in Iraq.
She was among those abducted at gunpoint on September 7. Her captors said they would behead her unless the US paid ransom and agreed to free female Iraqi prisoners.
But Fairuz – an Iraqi Kurd who moved to Canada 11 years ago, then moved back to help with Iraq’s reconstruction effort – got away by convincing one of her captors that she would help him emigrate to Canada, where he could start a new life.
One wonders what this terrorist was hoping to do with himself in a Land of Unbelievers, part of the Dar al Harb, the World of War. Perhaps he might have decided to re-settle in the US and apply for employment with US Immigrations and Customs? He would not, in that capacity, get to abduct anyone, but he could make hundreds of people stand in line for hours, a close cousin.
I wish I could email this from the plane here on the tarmac but I can’t do that because my Verizon wireless isn’t working in Toronto. I’ll send this off as soon as I land in Washington, assuming that does eventually happen.
Yes, I’m very grumpy. I haven’t had coffee or breakfast. You don’t want to mess with me.
By the way, thanks K-Lo, for linking to my grumpy Scripps Howard column earlier.
Posted at 01:29 PM
A GREAT QUOTE [John J. Miller]
"I can tell when George Steinbrenner is lying," said Jerry Reinsdorf, owner of the Chicago White Sox. "His lips move."
Posted at 11:47 AM
BURR BOUNCE? [John J. Miller]
My NRO story on Richard Burr, the GOP Senate candidate in North Carolina, cited a recent poll showing him behind Democrat Erskine Bowles, 50 percent to 40 percent. Most of the surveys on this race over the last few months have had Bowles ahead by 8 to 10 points. Until now. Today's Winston-Salem Journal reports on a new survey of likely voters that shows a narrow gap: Bowles 44 percent, Burr 41 percent. What's more, the poll was taken before the Burr campaing began running its ads on Bowles and taxes.
Posted at 11:35 AM
BREAKING: COURT SAYS TERRI SCHIAVO'S FEED TUBE CAN BE REMOVED BY HER HUSBAND [KJL]
Posted at 11:31 AM
READER FROM TACOMA ON NRO & WINDSURFING [KJL]
"I'm just glad Rove is running the campaign, and not the NRO handwringers. The windsurfing commercial is a riot. Humor is a must. GWB has it. Kerry has none. John Miller's and your response to this reminds me of the worried, pathetic fretting about Bush's unwillingness to fight and respond to the punches he took during the Democrats primary season last winter. You guys were advocating that Bush actually counterattack the silly accusations from the likes of Bob Graham, Howard Dean, etc, during that carnival of clowns. All I can say is I hope the NRO gang never sits down for a game of Poker with the President. He'll own all your vacation homes within 45 minutes."
Posted at 11:13 AM
TAX REFUNDS [Ramesh Ponnuru]
Michael: I think one of the original arguments for the Earned Income Credit was that it was an offset to payroll taxes. Conservatives have tended to argue that tax credits, if they should exist at all, should be applied only against income taxes and not against payroll taxes. I can see some arguments on both sides of that question. What I don't get is why conservatives have tried to make this into a huge point of principle.
And now I really will get going.
Posted at 11:01 AM
THE KERRY CAMPAIGN [Ramesh Ponnuru]
has altered its press release to deal with the specific problem I raised below. I'll be in transit for the next few hours, but will go into some other major problems with what they're saying when I get back to a computer.
Posted at 10:56 AM
TIMES DO CHANGE [KJL]
A few readers point out: "While leaving the House floor, did you see Allawi kiss Senator Lieberman on the cheek? and couple minutes later kiss Paul Wolfowitz on both cheeks? And we're worse off today than under Saddam rule?"
Posted at 10:52 AM
"FULL OF PLATITUDES" [KJL]
CNN, to their credit, aired the Allawi speech. But as soon as it was over, cut to anchor, who goes to reporter Joe Johns, who quickly points out that the speech was "full of platitudes" and was but a photo-op for the prime minister and the Bush administration. The "reality" is, Johns pointed out, is insurgency, etc.
So CNN gets even a cursory dose of good news about Iraq and has to quickly shoot down.
Posted at 10:40 AM
ARE WE SAFE? [KJL]
Cliff May deconstructs this constant, but not particularly helpful, question.
Posted at 10:25 AM
INTO THE VALLEY OF... [Andrew Stuttaford]
Russ Meyer, "king of the nudies", dies.
"In 1970 Meyer made a rare foray into the Hollywood mainstream when he directed Beyond the Valley of the Dolls for 20th-Century Fox. In later years he would remember this as his career high point. "That's the best film I ever made," he said. "Don't talk to me about art and all that crap. That movie made me a ton of money."
Posted at 10:18 AM
LIBERAL ECONOMIST WANTED... [Michael Graham]
...to explain the following from today's Washington Post:
"The dust-up centers on an obscure provision in the 10-year, $1.35 trillion tax cut that Congress passed in 2001. That tax cut expanded the $500-per-child tax credit to $1,000, but it also made another child credit available as a tax refund to some poor families who pay little or no federal income taxes."
Explain the following media math problem: A family pays no federal income taxes, but have been receiving a federal tax "refund." How is that possible?
Please show your work.
Posted at 10:15 AM
ALLAWI—SPEAKING TO CONGRESS NOW [KJL]
He delivers three main messages, he says: 1. “We are succeeding in Iraq.” Taking aim at the media, he says, “We are fighting for freedom and democracy—ours and yours.
2. “Thank you, America…. We Iraqis know that Americans have made…enormous sacrifices…. Your sacrifices are not in vain. The overwhelming majority of Iraqis are grateful…”
3. “Well over a million Iraqis were murdered by Saddam Hussein….My friends, today we are better off, you are better off, and the world is better off without Saddam Hussein.” Toppling Saddam was “the right decision.… You stood up—with allies—for freedom and democracy….You realized what was at stake.”
Posted at 10:11 AM
THE REASON I AM PROBABLY SO DOWN ON THE WINDSURFING AD THIS MORNING [KJL]
could have somethign to do with having Andy McCarthy's piece today fresh in mind.
Posted at 10:05 AM
RE: WINDOW ON THE WOMB [KJL]
A medical doctor cautions: "I am a Roman Catholic, a conservative and a physician. I am involved in pro-life work at our church and my husband does pro-bono work for Georgia Right to Life. However, as a physician, I must caution you and others on endorsing these mall ultrasound set-ups. There are serious and legitimate questions as to the safety of these, and studies are ongoing. Certainly if these can make the difference in saving a baby's life, that would be wonderful, and perhaps limited access is the answer. But 'mall set-ups' are questionable at best and potentially dangerous at worst."
Posted at 10:02 AM
JAYSON BLAIR WEIGHS IN ON RATHERGATE [KJL]
Posted at 10:00 AM
BRITNEY'S WEDDING [John Derbyshire]
Where was I when Britney was conning People? Squatting in a cube at NR Towers (the glittering 50-storey skyscraper at the heart of the worldwide NR empire) composing an editorial paragraph for the print magazine on this very topic.
I took as my theme the chorus of Kipling's poem "The Sergeant's Wedding," which goes thus: "Cheer for the Sergeant's weddin' / Give 'em one cheer more! / Grey gun-'orses in the lando, / An' a rogue is married to, etc." I suspect, however, that this particular graf won't make the cut. "Reasons of space," etc., etc.
The last quatrain of Kipling's poem is also apt: "Bowin' like a lady, / Blushin' like a lad / 'Oo would say to see 'em / Both is rotten bad?"
With a good grounding in Kipling, you know most of what's worth knowing about life.
Posted at 09:54 AM
RE: BUGGING OUT OR STAYING IN [John Derbyshire]
Jonah: I have no idea whether the Novak report is correct. I just want to say that if the administration *has* decided to bug out as soon as possible after the Iraqi elections in January, and the President needs a speech to announce this policy, I'll be glad to sell him one. I can be reached via National Review.
Posted at 09:53 AM
THE GOVERNATOR STRIKES [Mark Krikorian ]
California Gov. Schwarzenegger followed through on his threat and has vetoed the bill that would have given drivers licenses to illegal aliens. A Democratic spokesman said the veto would harm the governor's standing with minorities (he meant Hispanics and Asians; it might help him with Blacks and Indians), but I think Schwarzenegger realized that signing the bill could well send him the way of the unlamented Gray Davis. So he insisted on a provision that the other side could never accept (a special mark on licenses issued to illegals), allowing him to simultaneously say he was for the concept of giving licenses to illegals but also oppose any actual bill that would come before him. I have to give him credit -- he's a cunning politician. I can only hope that if he ever gets to the White House (Congressman Rohrabacher has just introduced a constitutional amendment to allow it), his current support for a guestworker/amnesty will be similar -- support it in principle, but oppose the details of any actual measure that reaches his desk.
Posted at 09:51 AM
A ROYAL DECREE . . . [Jack Fowler]
from Queen Zixi of Ix: “Buy one of National Review’s acclaimed children’s books and you will receive a FREE copy of L. Frank Baum’s revered 1904 tale.”
Thanks you, Your Highness, who specifically suggests you obtain Volume Two of The National Review Treasury of Classic Children’s Literature. Inside this 528-page handsome hardcover edition – brimming with hundreds of beautiful illustrations – are stories by Rudyard Kipling (“Toomai of the Elephants” and “The King’s Ankus,” which features the delightful Mowgli), semi-novels from two giants of American literature – Mark Twain’s “Tom Sawyer, Detective” and Jack London’s “The Cruise of the Dazzler” – legends by Louisa May Alcott and Frances Hodgson Burnett, and so many more wonderfully written tales (38 in all!) that you will find wholesome and that your children and grandchildren will find delightful. Every family should have this book.
Get it, or any of our other children’s titles, and the fully illustrated 100th Anniversary edition of L. Frank Baum’s Queen Zixi of Ix, or The Story of the Magic Cloak is yours with our compliments. Order here.
Posted at 09:48 AM
THE LOWRY/CORN TOUR IS HOT [KJL]
An e-mail: "My wife and I got to the Lowry/Corn debate at 5 minutes to 7 pm last night. The house was full, and they were turning away about 75 students who waiting for a chance to get in. I’m so upset that I didn’t go earlier! "
Posted at 09:44 AM
PORTLAND'S PET PEEVE [Tim Graham]
I was booked for a Portland, Oregon radio interview last night, and while they tried to stick to my topic (Dan Rather), they were really upset about this: Bill Bradbury, the Oregon Secretary of State, ruled that 3,000 of the 18,000 Nader campaign signatures were invalid, so Nader can't be on the ballot in November. The Oregonians started comparing Bradbury to Katherine Harris. If Harris couldn't support Bush and be a plausible elections officer, how about this Kerry supporter? And whatever happened to count every vote (or signature?) For more fun with switched sides, see this story from a few weeks ago, where the liberal unions cheer Bradbury's efforts to prevent voter fraud. Somehow I don't see Dan Rather kvetching that the decision came down as Bradbury "sees it and decrees it."
Posted at 09:43 AM
SMART PEOPLE FORGIVE DAN [Tim Graham]
Anyone who watches CNN knows that you won't be getting through an Aaron Brown newscast without an overbearing Aaron Brown commentary. On Monday, MRC's Ken Shepherd heard the latest sermon. Brown announced, "There is not an honest reporter in the country today, not an honest news organization that hasn't in the last few days, when looking at the story of how the now CBS discredited documents on the President's National Guard service, said 'there but for the grace of God go I,' excepting that some partisans will see it otherwise, will see willful deception on the part of CBS. Smarter and more reasoned heads know better. Sources can and do sometimes mislead. Sometimes they do it deliberately, sometimes inadvertently but it does happen and it happened to CBS big time."
Pardon me if this sounds like Aaron Brown doing for Dan Rather what Dan Rather did for Bill Clinton on the O'Reilly Factor: insisting the willful deceiver is an "honest man" long after the evidence suggests otherwise.
Posted at 09:41 AM
U.N.? WHO CARES? [KJL]
Posted at 09:34 AM
BLUE STATES FOG? [KJL]
A reader: "You guys are overloading the brain if you can't see the genius of that ad. That ad might not play well with the talking heads, but I can tell you it's playing well in Perioa. That ad had everybody in our office laughing."
Posted at 09:12 AM
RE: FLIPPING AND FLOPPING [KJL]
John, I'm in agreement. I think that windsurfing commercial (watch it here) was probably a bad move. Even moreso, because I just saw on FNC a windsurfing/flip-flopper ad from some outside group that looked uncomfortably similar. It's a legitimate line of attack, but one surrogates should be making--I can't believe people didn't cringe as they were putting the commercial together and had to put the "approved" by W. imprimatur on it--even if there were indications (which there of course must have been) that it would resonate.
Posted at 08:49 AM
RE: SEEING "CHOICE" [KJL]
John J.--what's amazing and encouraging is how increasinly available they are--setups at the mall, even--and, of course, how precise the technology keeps becoming--seeing coughing, yawning, as we saw in Britian earlier this year. This has the potential to change hearts and minds. And, frankly, is a large part of the reason why abortion advocates are so nervous (see their increasingly shrill rhetoric).
Posted at 08:38 AM
A CHILD, NOT A CHOICE [John J. Miller]
How many women would forgo abortions if they were first required to look at high-rez ultrasounds, like the ones described in today's New York Times?
Posted at 06:17 AM
FLIPPER [John J. Miller]
No matter how effective the strategy has been, a part of me wishes that the Bush campaign weren't attacking John Kerry as a flip-flopper. After all, the fundamental problem with Kerry isn't that he changes his mind, but that he's too liberal. What's more, it's not like Bush hasn't ever changed his mind about something (which is a nice way of say he has flip-flopped): He promised to veto campaign-finance reform, but signed McCain-Feingold; he promised to be a free-trade president, but enacted steel tariffs and so far seems have done less for free trade than Bill Clinton did; and so on.
But then I read this story in today's Washington Post, which tries to make the case that Bush is a bigger offender than Kerry when it comes to flip flops. It's an exceedingly weak case, especially when we get to the paragraph (near the bottom) about Kerry's inconstancy on Iraq, which is arguably the most important issue in this election: "In September 2003, [Kerry] said at a Democratic debate, 'We should not send more American troops" to Iraq. "That would be the worst thing.' In April, he said on NBC's 'Meet the Press' that 'if it requires more troops . . . that's what you have to do.' In August, he told ABC's 'This Week' that if elected, 'I will have significant, enormous reduction in the level of troops.' This week, he said that, as president, he would not have launched an invasion if he had known that there was not clear evidence of weapons of mass destruction or ties to al Qaeda, though last month he said, knowing these things, he still would have voted to give Bush congressional authority to wage the Iraq war."
The public's view that Kerry can't make up his mind about vital issues isn't the result of manipulative campaign ads, as the Post suggests, but the result of Kerry's own statements and his voting record. The Democrats have no one to blame for this problem but the man they've nominated.
Posted at 06:01 AM
Where was the blogosphere when Britney was conning People? Where was John Derbyshire?
Posted at 05:40 AM
Wednesday, September 22, 2004
AUSTAN, WE HAVE A PROBLEM [Ramesh Ponnuru]
John Kerry went after President Bush on Social Security today. Here's what his press release says: "In his West Palm Beach town hall meeting, Kerry referenced a new study by Chicago Business School Professor Austan Goolsbee that focuses on Bush’s plan to privatize Social Security. Goolsbee finds that financial institutions, not seniors, stand to gain from Bush’s plan.
"According to the study, the 45 million Americans who count on Social Security will see up to a 45 percent cut in their benefits, while Bush’s biggest backers – the financial services industry – will reap billions as part of the largest windfall in Social Security history."
The study does indeed find that administrative costs would amount to a huge windfall for Wall Street. Proponents of private accounts are sure to argue that Goolsbee's estimate of those costs is too high. But the study says nothing about benefit cuts for current retirees (or even future retirees). Goolsbee tells me he's surprised the campaign is citing him to predict a 45 percent cut for 45 million people. "That's weird," he says. "I don't know how they got that." His paper, he says, didn't deal with benefit levels.
Posted at 07:57 PM
REUTERS BLINKED [KJL]
Roger Clegg talked to them and they made changes to the piece.
Posted at 06:40 PM
FRENCH COMMANDO [Jonathan H. Adler]
What's French for "Heh"?
Posted at 04:13 PM
PFAW ON THE ELECTION [Jonathan H. Adler]
People for the American Way has this silly flash animation urging liberals to think about the Supreme Court when they cast their vote in November. Of course, one could urge conservatives to do the same think. (LvSA)
Posted at 04:07 PM
MICHIGAN TALK [Jonathan H. Adler]
Tomorrow at Noon I will be speaking to the University of Michigan School of Law chapter of the Federalist Society on "The Fable of Federal Environmental Regulation." Details on the event are here.
Posted at 04:00 PM
IS CBS REVIEW PANEL CONFLICT-FREE? [Jonathan H. Adler]
Professor Bainbridge notes that the special panel appointed by CBS includes Dick Thornburgh, former governor of Pennsylvania and Attorney General to Presidents Reagan and Bush (41). The presence of such a prominent Republican ensures the panel will look critically at CBS' actions, right? Not necessarily. As Bainbridge notes, Thornburgh was sued by Karl Rove for an unpaid campaign debt of $170,000 -- and lost.
Posted at 03:25 PM
KERRY'S RACE BAITING [John J. Miller]
Jonah: An even worse example of race baiting than Reuters reporting on the non-controversy over voting rights for felons is John Kerry's speech to the Congressional Black Caucus a week and a half ago. “We are not going to stand by and allow another million African-American votes go uncounted in this election,” said Kerry. A million African-American votes uncounted? That’s a lot of hanging chads--and it would have represented about two-thirds of all the black adults living in Florida four years ago, if it were true. The figure, however, is completely unsubstantiated in Florida or anywhere. (I called the Kerry campaign for any kind of corroboration and they weren't able to provide so much as a junk-science study from some half-cocked left-wing interest group.) But Kerry wasn’t done with his vile allegations: “We are not going to allow acts of voter suppression, and we’re hearing those things again in this election.” Of course they are: The Democrats have set up a toll-free telephone number to collect such stories, which are so essentially to the party’s mythology about what happened in 2000. This line is sure to ring nonstop through Election Day as every partisan crank who sees a state trooper within a few miles of a voting booth calls in to announce a Republican conspiracy. A few hours before Kerry issued his hateful accusations, John Edwards spoke at a CBC prayer breakfast and called for “unity” on the third anniversary of the terrorist strikes. “We want that one America,” he said. Too bad his running mate wasn’t listening.
Posted at 02:59 PM
MODERN CHINESE PAINTING [John Derbyshire]
Can anyone help me out here? I am looking at the work of the Chinese painter Shi Mo (who has a website here, though I warn you it's the most incredibly slow-loading one I ever encountered). I like his stuff very much, and shall shortly be making his personal acquaintance. However, I don't know as much about current Chinese painting as I'd like to. Can any reader who is better informed offer an opinion about Shi Mo and his work, with particular reference to its place in the tradition of 20th-century Chinese art? Shi Mo is apparently a student of Zhang Daqian's. Any thoughts, opinions, comments would be very welcome.
Posted at 02:58 PM
IN THE FACE OF EVIL [KJL ]
What I am told is a remarkable new movie, In the Face of Evil, based on Peter Schweizer’s Reagan’s War, will be in theaters on Oct. 1. Watch the trailer and see if it will be near you here.
The movie, which is about the Cold War and ties effectively into the jihadist evil we face now (based on reports from people who have seen), is being screened today by Lech Walesa—I’d love to be a fly on that wall. Sean Hannity will nearly be--he will be interviewing Walesa later today on the movie for his radio show and for his Fox show. Look out for the Polish W. today and for Evil.
Posted at 01:54 PM
"PRESIDENTIAL DEBATES" [Jonah Goldberg]
For the record, I am deleting ALL email with this subject header because some annoying people are spamming around letters to folks like me pleading for the libertarian candidate to be allowed in the presidential debates. I think it'd be hilarious to have a libertarian up there and I'm all for it. But if you guys keep sending me this junk I'm going to shred my copy of Our Enemy, The State and revive my support for free urban wireless networks at the taxpayers' expense!
Posted at 01:41 PM
CHURCHILL & SULLIVAN [Jonah Goldberg]
I think this is probably unfair to Sullivan in parts, but the history is interesting. From a reader:
Posted at 01:38 PM
YEAH, THEY SHALL HAVE THEIR REWARD [John Derbyshire]
A reader in Dubuque: "The reward waiting in paradise for a female suicide bomber is NOT to be one of the 72 virgins for any of the male suicide bombers."
Posted at 01:36 PM
WARNING [Jonah Goldberg]
Take sharp objects away from Roger Clegg before you let him read this rank newsitorial from Reuters.
Posted at 01:28 PM
SUNSHINE AND SERENITY IN THE SUBURBS [John Derbyshire]
It's an exceptionally beautiful day here in Huntington -- the first day of Fall, I believe. The sky is flawless blue, there's a mild breeze, outside temp 76. The kids are in school, Rosie's out working, so I'm alone here with Boris in a quiet house. Just had lunch -- cheese on fresh bread, boiled egg, green tea -- and am browsing the mail. I have some light writing chores this afternoon, which I may or may not accomplish, depending on how I feel.
I'm looking out the window of my study, down the street -- a jumble of houses, built at different times and in different styles across 100 years or so, lots of grass and trees, all very peaceful. American suburbia is as close to paradise as we can get this side of the grave, and fie! on all those pointy-head types who've scoffed at it this 50 years past. Terrible things are happening elsewhere, but here life is good, to be enjoyed in a spirit of humility and thanksgiving.
There, now. Hope that makes up for having posted that depressing Robert Kaplan piece earlier.
Posted at 01:26 PM
ARNOLD DOES THE RIGHT THING [Andrew Stuttaford]
"Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Monday signed into law what some advocates describe as one of the state's most important public health policies in two decades - a five-year experiment to reduce the spread of AIDS and other diseases among intravenous drug users by making needles and syringes available without a prescription."
Posted at 01:07 PM
DAN MUST GO [KJL ]
The Philly Inquirer calls for Rather to be gone. So does the Hartford Courant.
Posted at 01:03 PM
IN THE SKIES WITH MR. ISLAM [KJL]
A staffer from the Naval War College who was on the Cat Stevens flight e-mails:
A co-worker and I were on that flight from London. We had no idea what the issue was until we got home. The first story from the crew about a half hour before scheduled landing was that weather was forcing a delay which didn’t sound plausible from the forecast I had checked just before departure. Then we break out of the clouds and I couldn't match anything on the ground with what I know about Dulles from living next door for three years. As we crossed the runway threshold I saw a building with a Maine Air National Guard sign, knew it wasn't Dulles, and couldn't understand any reason why we weren't told of this change unless there was a major national security problem underway. Suspicions were reinforced when we were told to stay in our seats and not use cell phones. In due time the captain informed us it was a TSA/FBI issue, and we were going to disembark to go through Customs/Immigration in Bangor, and then back through TSA to get on the airplane. I guess this was the plan to nab the Cat-man. After disembarking, my colleague and I decided to bail on the flight and drive home (Newport, RI) to avoid possible RON (remain overnight) at Dulles. I arrived home sometime after 11 p.m., and my son looked up the news in Google to discover it was Heathrow/United not figuring out that Cat Stevens was on the watch list. I'm thankful that our worst fears were not realized. Though it was a surreal/awkward experience, I can tell you that everyone in Bangor was extremely courteous and helpful, and quite military friendly (bonus points).
Posted at 12:52 PM
I FEEL A SONG COMING ON [John Derbyshire]
Michael: While I cheerfully admit that my Mandarin stinks like a bear, and have in fact lamented my linguistic incompetence at length on this very site, my rendering of "Without the Communist Party There Would be No New China" was in fact in Mandarin, not in any southern dialect. I sang it as: "Mei you Gong-chan-dang jiu mei you xin Zhong-guo"; whereas in, for example, Cantonese it would have been: "Mut yau Gung-chaan-dong jau mut yau san Jung-gwok." See? And in fact, the only song I know how to sing in Cantonese is "Happy Birthday to You!" ("Gong hei lei saang-yat faai-lok...")
Posted at 12:48 PM
PICKY, PICKY [John Derbyshire]
I have had e-mails chiding me for writing "Roll Tide!" with a lower-case "t." To a lot of people, this is REALLY, REALLY IMPORTANT.
Well you can rob my house,
Steal my car,
Drink my liquor from an old fruit jar,
Do anything that your heart can dream,
But ah ha honey don't diss ma team...
(Apologies to Carl Perkins)
Posted at 12:37 PM
CBS REVIEW PANEL [John J. Miller]
I'm not actually opposed to CBS appointing an "independent review panel"--but it seems to me that in the blogosphere, we already have dozens of them.
Posted at 12:35 PM
"I CAN'T KILL THE BABY, DAD." [KJL]
Pain, love, hope, and redemption.
Posted at 12:33 PM
WOE IS ALTERMAN [Tim Graham]
The latest CBS-New York Times poll has Eric Alterman contemplating the end of democracy as we know it: "More than 60 percent of respondents said Mr. Kerry was either 'hiding something' or 'mostly lying' in discussing his service in Vietnam. That’s suspiciously close to the number of people who think Saddam attacked us. How can you have a democracy under circumstances like ours?"
It's a bit of a nasty, reflexive tic for leftists to always assume that Democrats and Democracy are the same thing: in other words, if Democrats lose, Democracy has failed. Even so, I feel a little David Broder nanny fit coming on when pollsters ask voters if someone is "hiding something" or "mostly lying" on a subject. (And the CBS-NYT phoners also found 80 percent found the President "hiding/lying" on Iraq.) That's a poll designed to exploit cynicism. I'd guess less informed poll subjects are quick to bite on the cynical line about either candidate to appear more "sophisticated" to the pollster. Couldn't pollsters just ask the same question in different words: do you trust what the candidate has told you about X?
Posted at 12:28 PM
DAN'S NEW SLOGAN [Tim Graham]
Posted at 12:24 PM
NOTRE DAME [Rich Lowry]
It's gorgeous here--no wonder when you tell people you are going to Notre Dame they talk as if you are heading to a shrine. I'm about to go to Legends for lunch, and then meet with the students who have founded a feisty new conservative publication here called The Irish Rover. The debate with David Corn is at 7 pm and open to the public. We will be at Washington Hall.
Posted at 12:23 PM
CBS NAMES PANEL [Tim Graham]
Posted at 12:22 PM
THIS IS AWFUL [Rich Lowry]
Win the lottery--and become the victim of multiple robbery attempts (see fourth paragraph down in this story).
Posted at 12:17 PM
WOMEN ARE FOR W. [KJL ]
The New York Times catches onto a story today that NRO readers are well aware of : Women want W., not Kerry. See Gary Andres and Myrna Blyth.
Posted at 12:12 PM
THE JACKAL EATS LUNCH [Alex Rose]
Regarding John Miller's discussion of the merits of Frederick Forsyth books, some years ago I was at a lunch with Forsyth, the actor Edward Fox and Charles de Gaulle (not the Charles, obviously, but his grandson, who was then a Member of the European Parliament, but has since gone over to Le Pen, I think).
Thus, in the same small room there was the man who wrote The Day of the Jackal, the man who played the Jackal in the movie, and the man whose grandfather the Jackal tried to assassinate. And me, of course, but my connection--I had read The Day of the Jackal and seen the movie--was rather more tenuous.
Unfortunately, I can't remember exactly why I was invited to this lunch. Perhaps I wasn't but chose to attend anyway.
Posted at 11:58 AM
AN AMERICAN VICAR OF BRAY [John Derbyshire]
Following my attempt last week to update that early 18th-century song "The Vicar of Bray," a reader down in the Gnat Belt has pointed me to a Revolutionary-era American song along the same lines, spoofing the wavering loyalties of some colonists.
Posted at 11:54 AM
EXPENSIVE GIFTS [Jonathan H. Adler]
Some may have thought Oprah's decision to give new cars to her studio audience was a grand gesture, but the IRS sees a taxable event. The recipients must treat their new cars as income, which could mean a tax bill of up to $7,000.
Posted at 11:48 AM
DEBATING MED-MAL [Jonathan H. Adler]
PointofLaw.com, the Manhattan Institute's excellent website on legal reform, is hosting a debate this week on medical practice reform and the 2004 election between Dr. Ron Chusid, founder of Doctors for Kerry, and Bush backer Ted Frank. Like all the debates PointofLaw has hosted to date, it's worth a read.
Posted at 11:46 AM
RFK JR. (AGAIN) [Jonathan H. Adler]
I was paired with RFK Jr. in a set of interviews yesterday on WOSU radio in Columbus. While Kennedy has tempered some of his attacks -- at least when he knows I'm listening -- he still can't help spewing whoppers. Two of the best new ones from yesterday:
1) Urban air pollution "causes" asthma. This is false. Ozone and other forms of outdoor air pollution aggravate existing asthma and can trigger asthma attacks, but they do not "cause" asthma. Indeed, childhood asthma rates have skyrocketed as urban air pollution levels have declined. Whatever the actual causes of asthma are -- a subject that scientists and medical professionals still debate -- outdoor air pollution is not one of them.
2) The EPA's recent fish advisory announcement demosntrates that water pollution is getting worse. This is false too. As the EPA made clear in its annoucement, the reason more water bodies are under fish advisories this year is largely because a) more water bodies are monitored, so the EPA and state officials are more aware of exisiting water pollution problems, and b) some states have opted to err on the side of cuation by listing all state waters even though they don't have data to indicate that all state waters are sufficiently polluted to justify fish advisories.
As before, I have a hard time believing that Kennedy doesn't know this stuff, so that doesn't leave many charitable explanations for his constant, and repeated, misstatements of fact.
Posted at 11:45 AM
A PERSON, NOT A MOVEMENT [Jonah Goldberg]
From another reader:
The attack on the soldier was disgusting and deserves publicity. But your correspondent's attempt to generalize one attack on one soldier to smear the entire left is wrong and unfair. The article didn't mention any other similar attacks, so, thankfully, this does not appear to be a trend.
Posted at 10:57 AM
PRACTICE, PRACTICE [Jonah Goldberg]
From my Airpower Guy:
Posted at 10:55 AM
BACK TO THE FUTURE [John Derbyshire]
Prompted by a friend's remark, I just got through re-reading Robert Kaplan's splendid doom'n'gloom piece from back in 1994. It has held up surprisingly well after ten years, and is full of quotables, e.g.: "Whereas the distant future will probably see the emergence of a racially hybrid, globalized man, the coming decades will see us more aware of our differences than of our similarities. To the average person, political values will mean less, personal security more. The belief that we are all equal is liable to be replaced by the overriding obsession of the ancient Greek travelers: Why the differences between peoples?"
I am coming to think that in the early and mid-1990s, a veil was briefly lifted, to give us some glimpses of the truth about humanity and our collective future. When we saw what was behind the veil, though, we dropped it rather fast, and have spent the past ten years in a dream of wishful thinking.
I note in this context that next month marks the 10th anniversary of the publication of Herrnstein & Murray's book THE BELL CURVE. Looking back over these ten years, the striking thing about that book is how little practical consequence it had. There was really no follow-up in the world of real politics, any more than there was to the insights offered by Kaplan and Samuel Huntington. The No Child Left Behind Act, for instance, was written as though THE BELL CURVE had never been published; just as the Iraq war and the nation-building effort that followed took no account of Kaplan, Fukuyama, or Huntington. "Humankind cannot stand very much reality." Perhaps God in his wisdom permits us to know more than we can bear to know.
Dark thoughts; I am sorry, I shall try to find something more cheerful to post. In the meantime, if you have time (the piece is rather long), try reading or re-reading Kaplan's essay.
Posted at 10:51 AM
THE ATTACKED SOLDIER [Jonah Goldberg]
And this one from a guy I suspect came in from a Daily Kos link (given his first email to me), but I don't know that. I asked him if he wanted his email public and he declined:
Honestly Jonah, What did the soldier expect...? Toby Keith is a buffoon, why should anyone expect his fans wouldn't be as equally stupid and violent? By the way, any confirmation that the decorated soldier's Purple Heart was in fact merely one of those cute widdle RNC bandaids? The guy sounds like he couldn't defend himself against a ham sandwich. Good riddance he's not in Iraq trying to protect good ol' American freedom, lest my kids be forced by Osama to speak Arabic. Cheers, Dave
Posted at 10:43 AM
AVENGED [John J. Miller]
I used to have a theory about the novelist Frederick Forsyth: His first book, The Day of the Jackal, is the best thriller ever written--and every subsequent book of his has been not quite as good as the one before it. That's okay, as long as you start at the summit at work your way down slowly. His first six or seven books are really good. Then, in the early 1990s, came The Fist of God, which was merely okay, followed by Icon, which was the first time he disappointed me. So I turned to other writers and didn't snatch up either of Forsyth's most recent books, The Veteran and Avenger, until recently. I enjoyed The Veteran (which is not a novel, but five unconnected stories) but wouldn't call it a classic. Avenger, however, is exemplary--easily the best book he's written since the 1980s, and perhaps since the late 1970s. It is vintage Forsyth--if you like his genre, I recommend it highly. Bonus: It's just now out in paperback.
Posted at 10:18 AM
SUICIDE BOMBER HAS BLOWN UP A BUS IN JERUSALEM [KJL]
Posted at 10:01 AM
BATTERED WIFE SYNDROME--IRANIAN STYLE [KJL]
Posted at 09:59 AM
NOT CAT’S KINDA CRADLE [KJL ]
I don’t get why someone who would be upset by an Iraqi freedom t-shirt would be at a Toby Keith (a.k.a. Mr. Boot in Osama's A**) concert. Talk about outnumbered.
Posted at 09:15 AM
ALIAS KERRY [John J. Miller]
A weird pop culture coincidence: The name of John Kerry's first wife, Julia Thorne, also appears on the TV show Alias as the fake name Sidney Bristow (the CIA character played by Jennifer Garner) used during the two years she went "missing," between the show's second and third seasons. It just dawned on me now, as I was reading this Washington Post story mentioning Kerry's Throne--and because my wife and I have been watching Alias on DVD. Sounds like a scoop for Dan Rather!
Posted at 09:11 AM
WILD WORLD [KJL ]
Another things re Cat Stevens: Do “peace activists” normally support the murder of book writers?
Posted at 09:04 AM
OH JOY [Jonah Goldberg]
The Dems are launching some shiny new Democratic version of the Contract with America today.
Posted at 09:03 AM
I'm ashamed of myself for not asking the question David Frum asks this morning.
Posted at 08:55 AM
BAD OMENS [Jonah Goldberg]
The only bigger clue that Mapes is a goner than this USA Today piece would be if a huge hairy dude with bad teeth and a black hood was standing outside her office sharpening his enormous axe.
Posted at 08:55 AM
CHURCHILL & DUNKIRK [Jonah Goldberg]
A few readers mistakenly criticized me for saying Churchill was Prime Minister during Dunkirk. He was Prime Minister, but he'd only been in office for a couple weeks. Andrew Sullivan makes a different point, noting that Dunkirk wasn't Churchill's failure at all. That's fair. I was basically looking -- hurriedly -- for a symbol of a setback in a just war everyone had heard of. No one would dispute, of course, that there were plenty of setbacks on Churchill's -- and FDR's -- watch.
Sullivan goes on to talk about how Bush divided the country etc etc. in un-Churchillian fashion.
Let's offer two points in Bush's defense on this score. First, the Democrats made the deliberate and cynical decision to make dividing the country a priority. Perhaps not that much -- or not uniformly -- before the 2002 elections. But afterwards, and most especially once the WMDs didn't materialize the entire Democratic leadership decided that Howard Dean and Teddy Kennedy should set the tone of the debate: "lies, lies, lies, Vietnam, Vietnam, Vietnam." The war was hatched in Texas, it was for Israel, it was for oil, it was for Halliburton, it was for whatever Teddy, Howie and Michael Moore said it was (recall that the chairman of the DNC has fully embraced Michael Moore. This poisonousness even infected the unanimity around 9/11. For example, Howard Dean -- then the Democratic frontrunner -- even floated conspiracy theories about Bush, the Saudis and 9/11. In short, if we are going to take these Churchillian analogies this far, let's also conjure the British -- and American -- tradition of a loyal opposition.
Posted at 08:37 AM
SOME COWARDLY S.O.B. [Jonah Goldberg]
Beats up a US soldier for wearing an Iraqi freedom shirt.
Posted at 08:01 AM
BURKETT TO SUE CBS [Jonah Goldberg]
How does that old fable go? It ends with the rattle snake saying "You knew I was a snake when you brought me in here."
Posted at 07:57 AM
MORNING HAS BROKEN [KJL]
This Cat Stevens story is basically being treated as a joke this morning. But it is pretty disturbing that someone designated a risk, on no-fly lists, gets on a plane anyway, and is over the pond before anyone realizes.
Posted at 06:47 AM
IN AND OUT [John J. Miller]
Tony Blair says he supports India's bid to gain a seat on the UN Security Council. As the world's second most populous country--and its largest democracy--India certainly can make a good case for its inclusion. But there's a danger in letting the Security Council grow too large. So here's a potential solution: India gets the seat now held by France.
Posted at 06:38 AM
KERRY ON WMD [John J. Miller]
Peter: In June, Kerry gave a speech on WMDs, proliferation, etc. He talked about Russian stockpiles, enriched uranium, and Nunn-Lugar. He hasn't been beating the drums on these issues, but he's got a script.
Posted at 05:30 AM
Tuesday, September 21, 2004
TERRIBLE STORY [Ramesh Ponnuru]
Hat tip: Mark Shea.
Posted at 11:58 PM
LOVE IN THE FIRST DEGREE [KJL]
E-mails have been rolling in all day like this:
Well, K-Lo, the full name is "The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo," so it's not just a bunch of kids with their sows. Have an NRO gathering there. You'll probably like all the cowboys strutting around in their tight Wranglers. I know my wife does.Actually, a number of people are already assuming NRO will be there. If you happen to run The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, we can definitely talk. And, by the way: I do know who Clint Black is--and even like him--contrary to what some red staters assume. Some northeasterners were actually reared on Alabama--don't let Rich's Larry Gatlin run-in speak for us all.
Posted at 10:49 PM
OH BEAUTY [Peter Robinson]
For something of which this campaign has produced precious little--really gorgeous prose--read Andy Ferguson's review of Kitty Kelley's book on the Bushes, The Family: The Real Story of the Busy Dynasty. Insightful, pointed, and hilarious. Andy is simply the best.
Posted at 10:14 PM
SAT. [Michael Novak]
Kate O'Beirne--and Jim--hold the greatest parties. Kate did not forget those wonderful little pastries for dessert that I have tasted only in her house, the chocolate one to die for, the vanilla one merely exquisite. And it was really fun to meet so many readers and fans of NRO, and to listen to exciting observations and analyses from them, and get some questions and probings... I was, however, startled to meet so many fellow writers on NRO, whose names have become famous to me, but whom I've never met. Wow! are you fellow writers young! ...I have seldom in my life felt so grandfatherly... And I do not think that marvelous Communist rendition that John Derbyshire managed with enormous aplomb and feeling actually was sung in Mandarin Chinese, as he said. It sounded to me like a dialect far, far to the South of that. But the Communist feeling was authentic. Especially if one imagines Communists as if they were actually in the cast of Les Miserables (Al Gore's favorite show). John was heroic, and he alone would have made the evening...But everything about the evening was sweetened by the hostess and her welcoming, laid-back, happy ways. She does a party right. So that the conversation flew fast and furious. The drinks flowed, and the smoke soared skyward.
Posted at 09:50 PM
REMEMBER THIS [Michael Novak]
At the beheading of an American engineer, the leader of the murderers stated the nature of the world's enemy with unusual clarity. We should never forget these chilling words: 'The militant on the video called President Bush "a dog" and addressed him, saying, "Now, you have people who love death just like you love life. Killing for the sake of God is their best wish, getting to your soldiers and allies are their happiest moments, and cutting the heads of the criminal infidels is implementing the orders of our lord."'
Posted at 09:45 PM
There's just no pleasing some people. A few months ago, Andrew Sullivan was complaining that NR was defeatist about Iraq. More recently, he's taken to bashing us for being cheerleaders for the war. His latest shot has NRO's writers "waiting for the call from the RNC to be told what to write." Sullivan is also, bizarrely, giving The Weekly Standard a hard time for allegedly failing to criticize Bush on the war. We've run plenty of analyses questioning the wisdom of various administration moves in the Middle East--take a look at what Michael Ledeen and Michael Rubin have been writing, for example. We'll keep running them, and others, as we have been. But I guess we'll have to resign ourselves to not be able to keep up with Sullivan's moods from week to week.
Posted at 06:47 PM
HIDING, MAN? [KJL]
Hugh Hewitt on the Kerry presser: "I was amused at the set-up, which was designed so that the television audience could barely hear the question and never see the reporter. Another display of confidence on Kerry's part. Day 51 since Kerry sat down on camera for an interview with a journalist, with cameras rolling, that allowed for a follow-up question."
Posted at 06:21 PM
RUSSIAN CHILDREN [John Derbyshire]
[Following on from my last post.] Whatever you think of Russia and her prospects, none of that is any fault of Russian children. I spent a day recently partying with some old friends, Americans of Russian descent. Several of them are involved with the NYC-based Russian Children's Welfare Society Of course, they have been trying to help the child victims of the terrorist atrocity in Beslan. Many of these children are badly burned. Others suffer from bullet wounds, crush wounds, and psychological trauma.
I know these people well, and have previously attended some of the Society's functions (though I have no formal affiliation with it). The RCWS is a well-run charity with minimal overheads. They get help directly to the kids who need it, interacting as little as possible with middle-men (such interactions in Russia being... expensive). If you are looking to make charitable donations any time soon, I respectfully suggest the RCWS as a very worthy cause, especially after the Beslan horror.
Posted at 05:57 PM
TERRY WATCH [KJL]
McAuliffe did a CNN call in a bit ago, and is still on the Nat Guard attack.
Posted at 05:55 PM
POWERLINEBLOG [Ramesh Ponnuru]
I'm sure you've already been there, but just in case, I'll remind you to go. John Hinderaker does a nice job correcting Jonathan Klein's rather foolish views about blogging. (Klein's the pajamas guy.)
Posted at 05:54 PM
UNTHINKABLE [Peter Robinson ]
Yesterday I shot an episode of Uncommon Knowledge with nuclear experts Scott Sagan and Graham Allison (for Allison’s new book, Nuclear Terrorism, click here). Sagan and Allison made the following points:
**In an interview in the mid-1990s, a Russian general, Alexander Lebed (now deceased) admitted that the Russians were unable to account for more than 80 one-kiloton “suitcase” bombs developed by the Soviet Union. More than three years after 9/11, we still don’t know where they are.
**Under legislation sponsored by Senators Sam Nunn and Richard Lugar soon after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Nunn-Lugar Soviet Nuclear Threat Reduction Act of 1991, the United States has been cooperating with the Russians in destroying now-superfluous Soviet-era nuclear weapons. The Bush administration has made no effort to accelerate this program. To the contrary. More nukes were decommissioned in the two years prior to 9/11 than in the two years afterwards.
**Even at our own nuclear facilities, security appears lax. At the Oak Ridge Tennessee facility not too long ago, the Department of Energy hired a group of former Navy SEALS to conduct a mock raid, probing for weak points. Yet as emerged afterwards, the raiders collaborated with the guards, making sure nobody lost his job, so that it only looked as though the raiders were probing for weak points. The test, in other words, proved a sham.
**All the evidence suggests that the North Koreans have been moving smartly ahead with their nuclear program. They either possess already, or could possess literally any day, at least two nuclear weapons and perhaps as many as eight. On the watch of George W. Bush, in other words, North Korea has all but certainly become a nuclear power.
I hope John Kerry loses. But I also hope that before November 2 he has the wits and guts to do some good, pushing the incumbent around in the way that all incumbents need to be pushed around. Immediately after asking why we still haven’t caught Osama (see John Miller, below), Kerry should ask Bush to explain precisely what the president has done to protect the nation against the possibility that terrorists will one day very soon be able to purchase or steal fissile material, and then do the unthinkable.
Posted at 05:43 PM
CHICKEN POX & EAST TENNESSEE [Peter Robinson]
I got enough questions at Gordon Biersch last night to remind me that when one starts a conversation in this happy Corner, one must finish it. To tie up two threads:
Did I or did I not come down with chicken pox? I did not. My doc tells me that what I had instead was gastroenteritis, a high-falutin’ way, as best I can tell, of saying that he doesn’t know quite what it was but that it was never going to kill me. For another couple of days now, I’m supposed to subsist on toast and bouillon, by comparison with which the locusts and honey of St. John the Baptist have begun to seem like high delicacies. But I’m a lot better, as witness that I was able to drag myself out last night, and thanks for asking.
How’d I like East Tennessee? Loved it. After giving a talk at UT (that would be the University of Tennessee, of course), a student approached to chat for a moment. “Wouldn’t you say that President Bush wears his religion on his sleeve?” the young man asked. Having been through this conversation who knows how many times before, I instantly started into my yes-but-religion-has-a-place-in-public-life talk, complete with references to the Declaration of Independence and Washington’s farewell address. As it turned out I was wasting my breath. “Yeah, well, that’s why I like President Bush,” the student said. “The President is a God-fearing man.”
An unself-conscious expression of reverence, out loud, in a classroom, in a public university. All hail East Tennessee.
Posted at 05:39 PM
THANKS [Ramesh Ponnuru]
to everyone who came to Gordon Biersch in San Francisco last night. It's almost always great to meet NRO readers, and it's great to see so many conservatives showing their support for the magazine in SF. As I said last night: First we take the bar; next we take the city. . .
Posted at 05:31 PM
MORE TEXAS DEMOCRATS’ HANDIWORK [Kate O'Beirne]
In a familiar pattern, following Republican successes in the voting booth, Travis County’s Democratic District Attorney Ronnie Earle today indicted a bunch of the GOP’s corporate supporters, including Cracker Barrel and Sears, and three employees of a PAC Tom DeLay is on the advisory board of. Corporate contributions to PACs are not illegal in Texas. While corporate contributions to candidates are illegal; TRMPAC never gave corporate contributions to candidates and that is one of the main arguments in their defense. The indictments from Earle’s third grand jury follow a two year investigation. In 1993, Earle indicted Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison after she won a special election. The judge directed a verdict of acquittal on the first day of trial. CBS’ pal Bill Burkett hasn’t been focusing all of his attention on his grudge against George Bush. In August he was cheering up his fellow Democrats about the opportunity to “rid the country” of Bush, along with “Perry and DeLay manipulations.” In Texas, if you can’t beat ‘em – indict ‘em.
Posted at 05:21 PM
HARDLY MY FIRST [Jonah Goldberg]
From a reader:
Posted at 04:51 PM
EAST TURKESTAN GOVERNMENT-IN-EXILE [John Derbyshire]
East Turkestan (the Chinese "autonomous region" of Xinjiang on your atlas -- the "autonomy" is, of course, perfectly fictititous) now has a formal government-in-exile, launched on Tuesday, September 14, on Capitol Hill , scroll down to 2nd story; declaration statement in full.)
The commies are, of course, furious with us for letting this happen.
Here's further comment from the Straits Times. D.J. McGuire, who sent me this info, notes about that last report: "'The news service quoted unnamed analysts as saying the East Turkestan issue was likely to become an irritant in Sino-US relations in the future.' Irritant? So the Uighurs are diplomatic athlete's foot?"
Posted at 04:48 PM
RE: FATAL FLAW [KJL]
I backtrack: The hair was self-deprecation, many readers say. He's just not that good at it.
Posted at 04:32 PM
SIGH: I JUST DON'T GET IT [Jonah Goldberg]
The Daily Kos seems to think I'm an idiot for relishing the news that Americans are teaching Iraqi kids to play baseball. It's often a good sign that someone's preaching to their choir when they think your position is self-evidently wrong (which, of course, it can be). But in this case I don't get it. Apparently I shouldn't be jazzed about American soldiers teaching kids to play baseball because things can go wrong like they did in Beirut. I think that's an absurd "argument." I use quotation marks because it strikes me more as a brain burp or something.
Of course things can go wrong. How does that make doing good by some Iraqi kids bad? I suppose I could've ended my post noting that a car bomb might kill all off the kids and GIs. But, hey, I guess I'm just a rose-colored glasses kind of guy.
Posted at 04:31 PM
KERRY AS CLINTON [Jim Robbins]
Seems like old times: Watching John Kerry's Q&A with the press today the impact of the new Clintonista staff was evident. One of Clinton's favorite tricks was to take things he was accused of and accuse his opponents of them. This is exactly what Kerry was doing. He is not the flipper, Bush is. Kerry only has one Iraq policy, and always has. He has never wavered, but Bush has wavered frequently. Kerry also -- as predicted! -- is trying to take credit for having suggested the positive things going on in Iraq, even though it took him this long to settle on the one position he claims to have had all along. Look for more of this technique. It can be very effective if left unanswered. Remember when Clinton began talking about "values" and conservatives just rolled their eyes? Don't underestimate this technique, even Kerry might be able to pull it off.
Posted at 04:21 PM
SAVAGES [Jonah Goldberg]
Second American beheaded.
Posted at 04:16 PM
FRANKENPOL [John J. Miller]
The St. Paul Pioneer Press has polled Minnesota voters on a prospective Al Franken challenge to GOP senator Norm Coleman in 2008. The result: 57 percent support Coleman and 29 percent prefer Franken. Doggone it, people don't like him.
Posted at 02:44 PM
KERRY AND LETTERMAN [KJL]
His fatal flaw, a reader points out: "He made no attempt at self deprecation."
Posted at 01:54 PM
ONE MORE THING TO WORRY ABOUT [John Derbyshire]
Good scary piece about Russia in the current issue of THE NEW REPUBLIC (online only if you're a subscriber). Bottom line: "In the near-total vacuum that is Russian political life today, a new name can surface very fast. But the fact that [extreme nationalists] Rogozin and Limonov are the two names most often bandied about points to the part of the political spectrum from which the new leader will emerge: He will be an extreme nationalist dictator." One more thing to worry about.
Posted at 01:46 PM
DON'T FAINT: KERRY MEETS THE PRESS [KJL]
John Kerry is about to hold a press conference (reponding to the Bush U.N. speech).
Posted at 01:44 PM
THE SONG [John Derbyshire]
Lotsa people want to hear the song sung. It really is a ChiCom standard, & must be on the web somewhere, but so far I haven't found a sound file. Closest I have come is this site, where it is the fourth song down in the second box... but I'm danged if I can make it play.
For just the tune, this will do. But of course you want to hear those stirring words.
Posted at 01:34 PM
THE UNTROGLODYTES [Peter Robinson]
A rollicking time last night at Gordon Biersch, a microbrewery and restaurant on the San Francisco waterfront, with something like 60 to 80 readers of NRO joining Ramesh, Bill Rusher, Steve Hayward, Deroy Murdock, and yours truly—and, as someone who has lived out here for more than a decade now, I can assure you that gathering 60 to 80 conservatives in one place in San Francisco represents a seismic event, right up there with the Loma Prieta temblor.
Although it proved impossible to talk to everyone, I had long conversations with Lucy, a business consultant, Dan, an insurance executive, Gary, the president of a big company, and Eric, a recent grad of Stanford law school who starts at one of San Francisco’s major law firms next Monday. Troglodytes? Nope. Our crowd is well-informed, well-spoken, and well-heeled.
Posted at 01:32 PM
ANYONE NEAR SOUTH CAPITOL STREET? [KJL]
Might want to make sure Terry McAuliffe isn't locked in his office. McAuliffe had said he would talk about Bush and the National Guard every day of the campaign. So, where is he?
Posted at 01:24 PM
I CHALLENGED... [Rich Lowry]
...people to describe Kerry's Iraq position in five clauses or less. Here is an attempt.
E-mail: 'I'm against it, I'm for it, I'm against it, I'm for it... I'm against it.'
Posted at 01:23 PM
END OF AN ERA [John Derbyshire]
Jiang Zemin, now 78 years old, has stepped down from his last remaining official post, Chairman of the Central Military Commission. This marks the end of the Jiang Zemin era in modern Chinese politics. I remarked on the beginning of that era in a review for NRODT:
"It is clear from the Tiananmen Papers that Jiang Zemin, the current President of China and General Secretary of the Communist Party, owes his positions not to any constitutional procedure, but to a voice vote taken on May 27 1989 by the 'eight elders', a cabal of senior party leaders led by Deng Xiaoping. You will search China's constitution in vain for any reference to this body, yet they made all the key decisions leading up to the June 4th massacre."
I think the invaluable Pan Hu is going to do a full piece for NRO on Jiang. I'd just like to record my own "Good riddance!" to this faceless, colorless Party hack whose only positive achievement was to keep out of the way while his countrymen engaged in rational economic activity. His negative achievements, which were numerous, will be fully covered by Pan's forthcoming article.
Posted at 01:19 PM
BOOK ORDER PROBLEM [Jack Fowler]
The server which takes orders via NRO for NR books may have been secure, but as of Friday afternoon it has been ... melted. A fire at the building (I don't know where it is) toasted the system (just the cables we hope), so, if you placed an order for an NR book -- including the autographed copy of WFB's Miles Gone By -- Friday (Sept. 17) noon and since, send me an email email@example.com and our crack staff here will check to see if your order made it through the flames, or if we need to go through this again (we can easily take orders over the telephone until the system is replaced -- by the way the number is 1-212-679-7330, ask for Russell Jenkins or Kevin Longstreet). And now, back to America's truly hottest spot, The Corner.
Posted at 01:06 PM
D.U. [Jonah Goldberg ]
Some folks at the Democratic Underground are planning on leaving the country. Apparently Rather's capitulation was too much. I particularly like the poster #7 who thinks staying behind would make him/her akin to a Jew left behind in Nazi Germany.
Posted at 01:03 PM
YES, YES, YES [Jonah Goldberg ]
This is the sort of news I love to hear from Iraq:
ALTUN KUPRI, Iraq – Minus the sound of Muslim prayer on a loud speaker from a nearby Mosque, the Iraqi baseball game played here on Sept. 15 was reminiscent of a Little League game back in the states.
Posted at 12:57 PM
UNBELIEVABLE [Jonah Goldberg]
Dan Rather won't let go. Here he is in today's Chicago Tribune:
"Do I think they're forged? No," Rather said. "But it's not good enough to use the documents on the air if we can't vouch for them, and we can't vouch for them."
Posted at 12:43 PM
TAKING CLASS STRUGGLE AS THE KEY [John Derbyshire]
That kind of song actually goes over much better if you're dressed in proper revolutionary garb:
Unfortunately they didn't give me time to change.
Posted at 12:23 PM
ON INDIANS [Jonah Goldberg]
Okay I lied. I like this email:
Ok, now I am mad. Jonah, being from Oklahoma I am not unique in being part American Indian (not native American mind you) and I am very tired of the worn out pathos such as found in the statement “…Americans bent on taking their territory from them and in the process committed genocide-…“. American Indians did not understand the concept of owning land. They took what they wanted when they were able, knowing that it could be taken from them the same way. While there were abuses in both directions, our ancestors conquered this land and subjugated the indigenous people. To quote Spike, “that’s what conquering nations do”. Tell your e-mailer to get over their 21st century feelings of guilt and make this life we have paradise on earth if that is what they long to do and to quit handing out moral “holier-than-thou claptrap.
Posted at 12:21 PM
REVEILLE [Rick Brookhiser]
Wake up! Put down your Dan Rather teddy bears! The election is not going to be a smooth coast home, flipping through memos from Burkett to Barnes to Lockhart to Dan. As Rich says, Kerry has engaged the main issue.
The Nader vote, which was showing signs of life, will disappear again. Kerry has a position, finally, and the flip flop meme is about as valuable as mulch. Who cares what he said yesterday, if what he says today seems to make sense? A foolish consistency, etc.
Terrorists can get on board the Kerry campaign, in Iraq and elsewhere. Every death in Iraq can be a black mark against Bush, and every death anywhere else in the world can be a black mark against Bush, because he shouldn't be distracted in Iraq. No, I don't believe Kerry welcomes terror, or that he is anything but a patriot. But the terrorists will see it in their interest to help him by making the big push in October. They were going to do it anyway; once more, with feeling.
Bush will have to explain why Iraq was right, why it is better to have Saddam gone, and how we are going to prevail there; and how we intend to prevail over all. He will have to say it in big speeches, and he will have to say it in sound bites. It won't be Lincoln Douglas or the Federalist Papers, but it will be as close as we come.
Posted at 12:14 PM
OR MAYBE IT IS AN INDIAN FIGHT [Jonah Goldberg]
Last word on this non-debate, from another military guy:
Posted at 12:11 PM
WHERE'S OSAMA? [John J. Miller]
Rich: I agree with you entirely on Kerry and Iraq. There's something else Kerry should do: ask why the Bush administration hasn't found Osama bin Laden after three years of searching. We all know the reason: It's tough to find a guy living in a cave along the border of Afghanistan and Pakistan (assuming that's even where he is). But the fact remains that if we're going to judge success in the war on terrorism and hold our political leaders accountable, we're going to have to lay down a few markers for judging their performance, such as whether there have been any major terrorists attacks on U.S. soil. Another marker is the death or capture of bin Laden. Kerry could make the point that Bush inappropriately diverted resources away from a top goal in the war on terror -- and that as a result, the world's most notorious mass murderer remains at large. It would require Kerry to gamble that bin Laden in fact won't turn up between now and November 2 -- but if he does, Kerry's a goner anyway. So why doesn't he condemn Bush for fighting a war on terror that has failed to take down our planet's #1 terrorist?
Posted at 11:49 AM
RE: DIVINE DERB [KJL]
It's against my better judgment to post this e-mail from a reader:
Yes, yes, even from just the pics I could feel the magic! Reminds me of pictures of Elvis' '68 Comeback. Same magnetism, same raw sexuality. I almost feel like I'm there with the Derb moving, panther-like around the room. Whoever says we conservatives are stuffy, geeks are going to have to contend with these pics! WOW!
Posted at 11:47 AM
DIVINE DERB [John Derbyshire]
Apropos my yesterday comments about finally seeing what people look like after you've been sharing web/print pages with them for months, I've been wondering what *I* look like to people who've known me only from my bloggings. So what do I look like? According to one of Saturday's attendees: Dante.
Posted at 11:40 AM
IT'S NOT AN INDIAN FIGHT [Jonah Goldberg]
From another reader:
That Army guy's comment was inappropriate- the Indians were not unified and not fighting a religious war, they were fighting an invading force of Europeans and eventually Americans bent on taking their territory from them and in the process committed genocide- we are not trying to seize Iraq or eliminate all Arabs or Muslims in the process. Referring to the extended bloody wars waged against native Americans in the formation of this nation is not right. I should think you would not want Muslims to think that is what America is doing in fighting the terrorists. BTW- your army guy should look up, scalping was not a practice largely practiced by Indians but the Spanish, also might want to look up where the term Redskins come from and why lots of native Americans legitimately think having football teams named after the term is wrong. I would hope that Muslims don't think we are trying to wipe them all out so we can have the DC islamists team one day or the Jeep Iraqi.
Posted at 11:21 AM
W@UN CONTINUED [Cliff May]
I agree with KJL.
This speech is not exactly Churchillian – at least not yet --- but he’s making solid points.
Bush is an unabashed advocate for freedom, human rights and democracy – as any American president should be.
He knows full well that those sitting before him are generally indifferent to such values.
Posted at 11:20 AM
I'm half listening as I try to do other work. But everything I hear--talking about fighting terrorism, protecting human dignity, banning cloning, stopping human trafficking, changing the culture of death in Africa, fighting genocide in Sudan--strikes me as Bush being what he's been before: the U.N.'s conscience, challenging the body to be a legitimate one.
They call him a doofus cowboy, but he's a moral, world leader.
Posted at 11:07 AM
IT'S AN INDIAN FIGHT [Jonah Goldberg]
From a retired Army guy:
Jonah, It's an Indian fight -- a violent and bloody struggle against an enemy without morals or values as we understand them, and a way of life alien to us. In an Indian fight they took scalps; now they take heads. The US Army fought the Indians on this continent for 115 years; the British Army and Colonial militias had fought them for 150 years before that. The War on terror is going to be long and bloody, and fought on many fronts. It won't be won in the next four years, but it could be lost.
Posted at 10:57 AM
THE BS IN CBS [John J. Miller]
"In the end, what difference does it make what one candidate or the other did or didn't do during the Vietnam War? In some ways, that war is as distant as the Napoleonic campaigns." That's Dan Rather, talking about the Swift Boat Vets in an interview published on Aug 30. I hadn't seen it before reading today's WSJ editorial--which goes on to make this simple observation: "Nine days later Mr. Rather was reporting on Mr. Bush's National Guard service as if it were the story of a lifetime." Let's hope it really is the story of a lifetime--the one for which Dan Rather is always remembered.
Posted at 10:43 AM
KERRY'S SPEECH YESTERDAY [Rich Lowry]
I think he has to keep hammering away at Iraq like this because it's his best chance at eroding Bush's advantage on national security. The critique portion of it (almost all of it) had some power. But as Jim Robbins points out today on the homepage, when he gets to his solutions the speech trails off into irrelevance or vague agreement with Bush: the international help he talks about is not going to be forthcoming; training Iraqi forces is crucial, but we're already trying to do it; spending money faster on construction projects is also something we are trying to do. In my column today I offer some Iraq advice to Kerry that I realize is mostly fanciful. But I believe Bush's conduct of the war is open to a fairly scathing Jacksonian Zell Miller-style “win this thing or not” critique. If Kerry ever were to stumble onto it--and flip-flop into making it--he might get somewhere on Iraq.
Posted at 10:33 AM
NOT QUITE PLAYING IN PEORIA [Rich Lowry]
Last night was OK. I can usually tell within 2 minutes whether an audience is going to enjoy my spiel or whether it's going to be a bit of a slog. This was kind of sloggy...
Posted at 10:27 AM
SMART PEOPLE ON TOUR, CON'T [KJL]
A plug for the Feminists for Life (pro-life students at the U of Richmond read The Corner, so you know they are cool):
Serrin Foster, Feminists for Life president, will be speaking at the University of Richmond on tonight.
Posted at 10:00 AM
RE: IRAQ AND TODAY'S G-FILE [Jonah Goldberg ]
From a reader:
2. That just doesn't wash. It was clear from the begining that the war was unpopular with the rest of the world and would have been even if we found WMDs.
3. That's a pretty far reaching hypothetical. And it misses the point. I for one still believe in the reverse domino theory. If we stand-up a prospering and democratizing Iraq, it will be very difficult for the neighbors to stay tyrannical for long.
4. I think you over-read my use of the term "rational." The Mafia is rational in that it approaches issues with a cost-benefit mentality. That doesn't mean a "rational person" would choose to join the mob. As for France, I have given up trying to explain when, where or why it chooses to pick fights and when it doesn't.
Posted at 09:54 AM
What wouldyou consider must-read military blogs and why?
Posted at 09:40 AM
WHAT DID YOU MEAN DAN? [Jonah Goldberg]
Every journalists who gets a shot at asking Dan Rather about this story must get him to explain what he meant when he said his source was "unimpeachable." If he meant Burkett, Rather's a liar and a fraud. If he meant the person Burkett allegedly claimed they were from -- a Guard officer now in Europe by the name of George Conn -- he needs to explain how he could consider the source "unimpeachable" without ever having spoken to him. In fact, to say that your source is "unimpeachmable" without ever having met him sounds likee pretty shoddy journalism. If I gave Rather some documents and said they were from Jimmy Hoffa, does that mean his source is me or Hoffa?
It seems to me that the most plausible explanation of his "impeachable" declaration was an old-fashioned stonewall. And for that alone, he should go.
Posted at 09:38 AM
ALI VS. BOB NOVAK [KJL]
on Iraq the Model
Posted at 09:34 AM
TRUTH IN SONGS [Rick Brookhiser]
John, the song you sang sounds like something that both Simon Leys and Jiang Zemin could agree on. Without the Communist Party, there would be no new China.
Posted at 09:26 AM
SATURDAY NIGHT: WITNESSING THE DERB [KJL]
What you all wanted to see :
Yes, yes, I know what you want...it'll come.
Posted at 09:21 AM
BLISS IT IS [Peter Robinson]
From the remarks of one Ramesh Ponnuru at the NR gathering yesterday evening in San Francisco (about which gathering, more after I drop the kids off at school): "It is good to see people such as John Kerry, John Edwards, and Dan Rather in the same boat. And it is good to see that this boat is made of stone."
Posted at 09:17 AM
SATURDAY NIGHT [John Derbyshire]
For those who have asked: the song was that fine old standard "Without the Communist Party There Would Be No New China." I am sorry to say I couldn't get anyone to join in the chorus. My audience, in fact, had that stunned, speechless look the company has in the Act One finale of the Barber of Seville -- "Freddo ed immobile / come una statua" etc. etc.
Posted at 08:57 AM
THAT'S ONE WAY TO PICK A PRESIDENT [Jonah Goldberg]
Posted at 08:14 AM
HOUSTON LIVESTOCK SHOW [KJL]
Many readers want to have an NRO shin-dig there. It would certainly be different for some of your favorite northeast writers.
Posted at 08:10 AM
THE CBS-KERRY CONNECTION [Jonah Goldberg]
From a reader:
Remember the outrage when it was discovered that an attorney for the Bush campaign had given legal advice to the Swift Boat Vets? Collusion! Scandal! Now CBS thinks it the most natural thing in the world for the producer of a hit piece on Bush to pick up the phone for a little chat about upcoming stories, the weather, a source of some serious dirt on GWB, just the normal stuff. Perfectly ethical. Perfectly normal.
Posted at 08:10 AM
AH, THE JOYS OF EXPOSURE [Jonah Goldberg]
I haven't been on Wolf Blitzer's 5:00 O'Clock show in a long while, so I guess there are some people out there unaccustomed to, and uncomfortable with, um...me. I got lots of nice email from sympathetic sorts. And nice pile of email from those who are less so. Here are my two favorites. I've asterisked the naughty words -- for the children:
Jonah, You and the country know full well that every word reported in that CBS piece on the deserter Bush's NG lack of service was true, documents be damned! You're a smarmy little c**t who is unfit to even kiss Dan Rather's ass. You should resign after four years of your right wing muckraking lies, you CRACKER wannabe bastard! You're fired sh*thead.
And this one from someone who email address suggests he works at a Democratic-lefty sight I'd never heard of:
You have some nerve criticizing Dan Rather when you, Frum and other neo-cons are responsible for lying to get the United States into a war that has killed 1000 Americans and severely wounded 7000 more. As pieces of sh*t go, you're at the top of the heap. By the way, I now support the Palestinians and Arabs instead of the Israelis.
Posted at 08:04 AM
JOE LOCKHART IS A BUSY MAN [Jonah Goldberg ]
Anyone who knows anything about campaigns of any significance knows that the communications guy is busy six weeks out from election day, particularly if he's parachuting in to fix a lackluster campaign and a lackluster candidate. In other words, Joe Lockhart is busy. And yet, he took a call from Bill Burkett to discuss Bush's guard service. Why? Because the producer of the 60 Minutes broadcast felt it was vital that he do so. Because the producer of the now infamous 60 Minutes broadcast felt it was vital that he do so.
But -- pshaw! -- there's no bias at "60 Minutes."
Posted at 07:54 AM
DEBATES AND THE CW [Jonah Goldberg]
I know conventional wisdom says that the incumbent wants to limit the number of debates while the challenger wants more. And I'm sure that the Kerry campaign is operating on that assumption. And yeah I agree with John Miller and others that the townhall style meetings are awful on the merits. But I'm not sure three debates hurts Bush. He may be a garbled speaker and all that. But the more Kerry talks the worse he does. People have already absorbed Bush's speaking style. While Kerry's ability to pull his foot up along his back, over his shoulder and into his mouth still leaves many of us speechless. I'm sure that Bush will come armed with numerous taunts to get Kerry to explain his record. And that's bad news for Kerry. Indeed, the more people see Kerry, the less they like him.
Yeah, yeah I know undecideds think the debates are supposed to be about the issues. But that's never been the case.
My guess is that the Bush campaign was able to win a great many concessions from the Kerry campaign -- format, notes, times etc -- in exchange for that third debate when in fact the Bushies didn't really mind having it.
Posted at 07:44 AM
I'M A TOTAL SQUISH [KJL]
An army captain e-mails re Bob Schieffer and CBS:
I reiterate my position on this: Not only should they dump Schieffer, but CBS should lose all access to the White House and direct campaign access until CBS makes this whole Memogate thing right (e.g. Rather apology to Prez, somebody fired, re-education camps, etc).
Posted at 07:36 AM
Longtime, close readers of The Corner (Corner groupies, some might dub you) know Rich Lowry occassionally gives me a hard time for "taste" in music. There's always a little freedom that falls on the office when he is out and about (Preoria to South Bend this time): This morning, I've been editing NRO to Tears for Fears, Eddie Money, Bryan Adams, and other sometimes terrible (I can recognize this) 80s standards, with no worries that he might walk in and start laughing yet again (Falco being the all-time worst example of this) or call closing time. (Inside jokes around here are typically designated by bold, as some of our dear friends know all too well--something that has been going on since April.)
Why did I share that? No idea. But The Corner isn't exactly hopping right now.
Posted at 07:14 AM
SOUNDS LIKE THE U.N. [KJL]
A source who has read Kofi Annan's spoeech for general assembly opening day today says: "He spends a lot of time talking about suffering in Iraq and Rule of Law, but no time talking about the tyranny that led to the war."
Posted at 05:50 AM
ANOTHER MEMO [KJL]
This one is from our favorite Dem, Zell.
Posted at 05:45 AM
KERRY'S TOP 10 [John J. Miller]
Here's his list from Letterman. Mostly lame, though I did chuckle slightly at the line about the Dubya-2 form.
Posted at 05:40 AM
AL QAEDA DOESN'T WANT TO BE LIKE CBS [KJL]
Fearing a "credibility" problem, terrorists plan attack--perhaps on inauguration day, Bill Gertz reports.
Posted at 05:38 AM
KERRY AS CLOSER [KJL]
Jim Geraghty has a nervous tick Mrs. Kerry Spot blames on John Kerry--he jerks everytime someone says Kerry is a closer. (Kerry is not a closer. Kerry is not a closer, Jim reportedly says in his sleep.) Read all about it in the current issue of NR. (You subscribe, right?)
Posted at 12:05 AM
KERRY ON LETTERMAN [KJL]
I am no expert--and I just walked away from it before it ended--but he seemed so not funny. Why do Letterman if you'll put people asleep? What's the point of doing Letterman if you sound the same you will to the Chamber of Commerce?
Posted at 12:02 AM
Monday, September 20, 2004
THE HOUSTON LIVESTOCK SHOW? [KJL]
Forgive me if I am being positively blue state.
Posted at 11:39 PM
RATHERGATE & THE LOCKHART CONNEX [KJL]
Read about it on the Kerry Spot.
Posted at 11:32 PM
DUMP SCHIEFFER [KJL]
We said it last week. I reiterate it now. The Bush administration's on the case too, as well they should--and as well Kerry should...
With Rather admitting they were lied to and an internal investigation going on at CBS, time for another network to get a shot at having one of their own moderate.
Posted at 11:21 PM
SAN FRANCISCO BASH [Ramesh Ponnuru]
A reminder: William Rusher, Steve Hayward, Deroy Murdock, and I will be joining NRO readers at Gordon Biersch tonight from 7 to 10 p.m. It's at 2 Harrison Street, and we'll be upstairs. Peter Robinson might be able to make it, too.
Posted at 06:27 PM
BYRON YORK [KJL]
will be on Brit Hume's FNC show tonight, 6:15ish EDT, talking about W. & the National Guard.
Posted at 05:56 PM
KERRY'S ON LETTERMAN TONIGHT [KJL]
Seems like bad timing on I'm-getting-serious-about-Iraq day.
Posted at 05:47 PM
CBS'S PUNCHLINE OF THE DAY [Michael Graham]
"Nothing is more important to us than our credibility and keeping faith with the millions of people who count on us for fair, accurate, reliable, and independent reporting."--CBS News.
LIST OF THINGS THAT, IN FACT, ARE MORE IMPORTANT THAN CBS'S "CREDIBILITY AND KEEPING FAITH":
--Dan Rather's ego.
--Andrew Heyward's paycheck.
--Helping Kerry beat Bush.
--Holding onto the "Angry Left" viewership that keeps CBS News from slipping behind UPN and the WB in the ratings.
--Not admitting that the bloggers are smarter than Dan is.
What am I missing?
Posted at 05:34 PM
NYC BARS--CORRECTION [Rick Brookhiser]
In my pre-convention guide to NYC, I said that Pete's Tavern and McSorley's Ale House contend for the honor of being the oldest bar in NYC. They do contend, but not, it seems, with reason, according to Mr. Richard McDermott, who wrote to tell me (with copious documentation) that the oldest drinking establishments in NYC are The Bridge Cafe (1794), Pete's Tavern (1851), Fanelli's Cafe (1857), and McSorley's Ale House (1862).
Anybody disagrees with that, you'll have to take it outside.
Posted at 04:57 PM
BAMBANG VS. MEGAWATI [John J. Miller]
Derb: I'd pay good money to see a Japanese monster movie with this title.
Posted at 04:36 PM
SEARING – OR HALF-BAKED? [Cliff May]
Kerry’s central argument today is that the war in Iraq was "a profound diversion" from the war on terrorism.
That’s interesting because what else happened today? An American was beheaded in Iraq -- by terrorists, more specifically by members of a terrorist group led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.
Zarqawi, of course, is a close associate of Osama bin Laden, and his ideology is nearly identical to bin Laden’s.
Kerry also said today that "Iraq is becoming a sanctuary for a new generation of terrorists.”
But Zarqawi is hardly an Islamist Gen-Xer. He fought against the U.S. in Afghanistan before moving to Iraq where he was the guest of Saddam Hussein. And while enjoying his refuge in Iraq, he masterminded acts of terrorism, including – to take just one example -- the assassination of an American diplomat in Jordan.
In other words, Iraq is a front – the most deadly front – in the War on Terrorism which is really a war against the most vicious forms of contemporary totalitarianism, Islamo-fascism (e.g. Ba’athism) and radical Islamism.
Posted at 04:32 PM
GET OUT THE WAFFLE IRON [John J. Miller]
John Kerry on Meet the Press a year ago: MR. RUSSERT: Do you believe that we should withdraw American troops from Iraq? SEN. KERRY: No. MR. RUSSERT: Do you believe we should put more American troops in Iraq? SEN. KERRY: No. MR. RUSSERT: Do you believe that we should reduce funding that we are now providing for the operation in Iraq? SEN. KERRY: No. I think we should increase it. MR. RUSSERT: Increase funding. SEN. KERRY: Yes. MR. RUSSERT: By how much? SEN. KERRY: By whatever number of billions of dollars it takes to win. It is critical that the United States of America be successful in Iraq, Tim.
Posted at 04:05 PM
SEARING [John J. Miller]
Current Washington Post headline on Kerry's Iraq speech: "Kerry Offers Searing Critique of Iraq War." [italics added] Now, where was the last time I heard about something being seared somewhere?
Posted at 03:58 PM
AMERICAN BEHEADED IN IRAQ [KJL]
Posted at 03:54 PM
MORE RE BUGGING OUT VS. STAYING PUT [Cliff May]
I agree with Jonah on this. A few additional thoughts are in my Scripps Howard column which led the Washington Times Commentary section yesterday.
Posted at 03:31 PM
LET ME GET THIS STRAIGHT [Jonah Goldberg]
A few months ago, Bush received a deluge of criticism for "exploiting 9/11" when the RNC used a clip of some firemen or some such from 9/11 in an ad. Today, John Kerry gives a speech where he uses the widows, sisters and mothers of 9/11 victims as a prop and the liberal pack is applauding the speech. What am I missing?
Posted at 03:29 PM
SOUNDS RIGHT [Jonah Goldberg]
From a reader:
Considering Dan's rampaging bull elephant of an ego, if he truly was duped, he'll uproot every tree in the jungle to get at the parties responsible for causing him this public humiliation. If he takes this lying down... you'll know he was a willing participant.
Posted at 03:05 PM
RE: INDONESIAN ELECTION [John Derbyshire]
J.J.: I am sure I can't be the first to suggest that if indeed Mr. Bambang Yudhoyono has defeated Mrs. Megawati Sukarnoputri for the Presidency, when she hands over the seals of office to him at the inauguration ceremony, he should offer a gracious: "Bambang, thank you, Ma'am."
Posted at 03:00 PM
ON TOUR [KJL]
If you're not in the town's where Rich is performing this week, maybe you will be where Peter Kirsanow, frequent NRO contributor, will be debating affirmative action:
Tues, 4:00p.m. Loyola Law School Courtroom of the 90's
Wed., 12:00p.m.USC Law School
Posted at 02:58 PM
WHY LARRY KING? [KJL]
Danny Boy will be on Larry King Live tomorrow night. (Of course, anyone who has suffered through LKL knows why.)
Posted at 02:46 PM
PAR FOR THE COURSE [Ramesh Ponnuru]
The New York Times reports on California's $3 billion bond initiative for research that kills human embryos. John Broder and Andrew Pollack write, "This promising but ethically controversial field of biomedical research is now severely limited by the Bush administration's policy restricting public money for research on embryonic stem cells." Especially in the context of a state-funding initiative, that should be "restricting federal money." But "severely limited" is a controverted statement and shouldn't be presented as though it weren't.
But that statement isn't the biggest problem with the article. It's that it accepts the claim that embryonic stem-cell research shows great promise in generating cures for Alzheimer's--have these guys bothered to read Rick Weiss's reporting in the Washington Post, which debunked that claim months ago?--and that the research could benefit "[h]alf of California families." I assume that the bond-initiative advocates get that number the same way the Democrats generate the figure of 100 million Americans who could benefit from expanded federal funding for the research: by assuming that the research might lead to cures for cancer, heart disease, and the like, no matter how little evidence there is for these conclusions. (The Times ups this national figure to 125 million. At the present rate of growth, the number of Americans who will be said to gain substantial benefits from subsidizing the research will soon exceed the actual population of the country.) If the Times wants to quote someone making these laughable assertions, it should at least indicate that there are people who disagree (and have good reasons for disagreeing).
Posted at 02:28 PM
CNN [Jonah Goldberg]
I'll be on Wolf Blitzer this evening around 5:30ish (time's not definite yet). Talking about Danny boy.
Posted at 02:26 PM
HEY, NR'S NOT AT THE VRWC TABLE! [Aaron P. Bailey]
Seen this past weekend at the Barnes and Noble in Durham, NC:
Posted at 02:24 PM
BUGGING OUT VS. STAYING PUT [Jonah Goldberg]
For the record, I think it would be disastrous to leave for leaving's sake. Sure, if there's some way that we could leave and keep Iraq on course to stability and democracy, that'd be great. But I know of no technology nor of any replacement troops -- Iraqi or allied -- that could manage that. I see absolutely nothing wrong with pulling American troops out of South Korea, for example, if we can provide the same deterrent without them being there. I'd love to pull troops from just about everywhere if their missions wouldn't be compromised in the process.
And while I cannot muster the Kremlinology required to figure out what's going on with Novak's column, I would like to make one general point. Pulling out would be a perfectly principled thing to do according to a certain straign of conservatism. A good realist could say "Right or wrong, we did what we thought was necessary to protect ourselves. Now we're getting out." Now I think this would be a mistake. But the principle of smashing and leaving others to pick up the pieces is intellectually -- if not always morally -- sound. I think we have to stay there for the long haul, as long as the long haul is necessary.
However, there is no principled reason for a liberal to want to bug out. Unless, that is, he or she honestly believes the Iraqi people would be better off by an American bug-out and civil war. But that's a hard case to make. Liberals have had a total of one idea about foreign policy in the last two decades: nation-building. That's their thing. All of the arguments for nation-building which applied to Somalia, Haiti, Yugoslavia etc apply even more to Iraq. Moreover, there's the additional issue of our national interest. Indeed, if you believe any of the "root-causes" rhetoric of liberal foreign -- and domestic -- policy then you should believe that rebuilding Iraq is a vital national and global interest.
That's what's so repugnant about John Kerry's basic position and the Democrats' support of it. Kerry shouldn't be complaining about how much we're spending he's should be complaining about how little we're spending. Some honest liberals -- like the editors of the New Republic (see their latest editorial if you have access) -- acknowledge this. But most are perfectly fine with any line of criticism against Bush's Iraq policy so long as it comes from a Democrat or is likely to help John Kerry. That's one reason why John Kerry and John Edwards sound so much like Pat Buchanan on foreign policy these days.
Posted at 02:19 PM
WHAT A GLORIOUS NRO PARTY! [Jim Boulet]
Not only are Kate and Jim O'Beirne dream hosts, but their parties are like the Washington events Alan Drury described in Advise and Consent: elegant conversation about topics esoteric or deep politics, your choice.
Brother Derbyshire alone was worth the price of admission. No topic stumps him. A chance for face to face discussions with David Frum, John Miller, Kathryn, Jonah, Rich and Kate was for me what an informal evening chatting with assorted New York Yankee all-stars would be for Rich.
The NRO folks are to politics what Barry Bonds is to baseball, only far fan-friendlier and steroid-free.
Posted at 02:09 PM
BAMBANG VS. MEGAWATI [John J. Miller]
I've said it before, I'll say it again: Indonesians have the best names. It looks like Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has defeated President Megawati Sukarnoputri in the country's runoff election. For what it's worth, this is moderately good news for the interests of the United States.
Posted at 01:59 PM
CLELAND [Jonah Goldberg]
Powerline wonders if he's the real source.
Posted at 01:57 PM
STATEMENT FROM CBS [Jonah Goldberg]
MAN WHO GAVE CBS NEWS DISPUTED DOCUMENTS DESCRIBES HOW HE OBTAINED THEM; IN TELEVISION INTERVIEW, HE ADMITS HE DELIBERATELY MISLED CBS NEWS PRODUCER
Posted at 01:50 PM
"BURKETT'S NOT THE SOURCE" [Jonah Goldberg]
From a reader:
He gave the documents to CBS, and lied to their producer about them (implying that he knew they were fake, but told her they were not fake, if you believe what he says or what CBS says, which I really don't at this point) in order to *protect the actual source of the documents* which he, logically, was not. Somebody gave them to him, and he gave them to CBS. He said that it was "another Guardsman," and has now admitted it was not another Guardsman, but has not said who it was. We therefore still don't know.
Posted at 01:44 PM
BURKETT'S THE SOURCE [Jonah Goldberg ]
CBS said Burkett, a retired National Guard lieutenant colonel, had provided the documents. In a press release accompanying Heyward's statement, CBS said that Burkett "also admits that he deliberately misled the CBS News producer working on the report, giving her a false account of the documents' origins to protect a promise of confidentiality to the actual source."
What an unbelievable journalistic scandal. Is it even imagineable that "60 Minutes" would have taken documents from a "Clinton hater" with a similar background and then, in a rush to smear him, short-circuit all of the normal rules to get to air?
Basically this story was based on the words of Ben Barnes and Burkett, two known partisans with a Big League gripes against Bush and -- in Barnes' case -- monumental ties to the Kerry campaign. CBS not only served as a transmission belt for this stuff but they willfully cut journalistic corners in the process. Then, when caught, they stonewalled. Rather said his source was "unimpeachable." Unimpeachable!!!! If Burkett is unimpeachable in Dan Rather's eyes. Someone needs to re-open his stories from the very first hurricane.
This is flatly outrageous. Rather should be fired. Mapes should be fired. Period.
Posted at 01:33 PM
I'VE BEEN RATHERED [Jonah Goldberg]
It's a hoax! Sorry: PowerGenitalia is not real (no Viagra jokes please). I will send an email to Rich resigning this very minute. If he accepts it, I'll see if I can get a job at "60 Minutes."
Posted at 01:08 PM
NICE REVIEW FOR MILES GONE BY . . . [Jack Fowler]
. . . in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer this weekend. Writes reviewer Bill Virgin: “For many conservatives of today, the formative public figures were politicians such as Barry Goldwater and Reagan. For some of us, though, the most significant influence was William F. Buckley, as we recited from a sort of greatest hits collection ‘Quotations From Chairman Bill’ (a play on and rebuke to Chairman Mao’s little red book, a favored text of would-be suburban revolutionaries of the time ... well, you had to be there). As he retires from the public eye (having given up the TV program and the management of the magazine he founded), ‘Miles Gone By’ is a valuable reminder of just what it was that drew people to Buckley as a writer and a person, then and now.”
Sweet. You can order your own copy of this acclaimed book, personally autographed by WFB (he’ll be in today wielding his trademark red pen) direct from NR, here.
Posted at 01:06 PM
TNR STORY: BETTER LINK [Jonah Goldberg]
This should work for everyone.
Posted at 12:58 PM
THE RATHER STATEMENT: CLARIFICATION [Jonah Goldberg]
I guess I didn't explain myself properly. I don't think CBS has done anything close to enough. They must reveal their source, fire people, come clean etc. But that's all to come as I see it. The first step was to issue a statement admitting they screwed up. That's what this is. Such statements are always cautious and lawyerly. I would hate for people to think that I think the matter is closed or anything like that. I'm just working on the assumption that not even cBS could think this is all they need to do.
Posted at 12:51 PM
NOT GIVING UP [KJL]
Reading about CBS's apology on CBSNews.com, a friend notes a picture and caption on the same page: The image is Ben Barnes and it reads: ""Former Texas Lt. Gov. Ben Barnes - a Democrat - claimed that he pulled strings to get young George W. Bush into the Guard."
FONRO (Friend of NRO) asks: "It belongs on this page why?"
Posted at 12:50 PM
KERRY'S SHOTGUN [Jonathan H. Adler]
Apparently he's returned it.
Posted at 12:42 PM
RE: RATHER [John J. Miller]
"Without fear or favoritism"? Well, maybe without fear.
Posted at 12:40 PM
SPEAKING OF HEAVY EQUIPMENT JOKES... [Jonah Goldberg ]
The British firm "Powergen" opened a subsidiary in Italy. Ask yourself what would you call that subsidiary. And then ask yourself whether you couldn't come up with something better than www.powergenitalia.com
Posted at 12:40 PM
SATURDAY NIGHT [John Derbyshire]
For those who have asked: the song was that fine old standard "Without the Communist Party There Would Be No New China." I am sorry to say I couldn't get anyone to join in the chorus. My audience, in fact, had that stunned, speechless look the company has in the Act One finale of the Barber of Seville -- "Freddo ed immobile / come una statua" etc. etc.
Posted at 12:39 PM
FIND BY CONTENT [Jonah Goldberg]
Grrrr. Many nice folks are writing in to tell me that all I need to do is hit Command "F" and then type in the words etc. I know how to do that folks. My problem is that when I use the find-function on my computer(s) it doesn't work when searching for content. Searching for names of files works just fine. But when I try to search for documents containing the word foombalakachoomba -- for example -- it just doesn't work. Either it searches and searches forever and comes up with nothing or it just comes up with nothing really fast. Also, most of the time when I try to "index" my hard drive it never completes the task. Meanwhile, back in OS9 this function -- in "sherlock" -- worked pretty well. I'm sorry to waste everyones time with this sort of thing but, hey, I'm selfish.
Posted at 12:37 PM
BUGGING OUT: A THEORY [Jonah Goldberg]
A reader writes:
Jonah, love your columns and all that you and the crew do o'er yonder, but I think Novak and the rest of the media are being played. I saw a front-page story on the LA Times (while in line at Starbucks) that cited criticism from "prominent Republican" senators like Hagel and McCain concerning the administration's handling of the situation in Iraq and calling for "reassessment" of what and how we're doing over there. Then we get the Novak line about possible withdrawal shortly after the elections.
Posted at 12:28 PM
SPEAKING GIGS [Jonah Goldberg]
I'm getting jealous of all of Lowry's speaking gigs (though I have a bunch in October, stay tuned for details). If you're interested in booking yours truly for college, corporate or sci-fi events, please contact KepplerAssociates.com. Sure, Lowry's smarter than I am and he's my boss. But I make a lot more jokes about not wearing pants.
Posted at 12:26 PM
THE RATHER STATEMENT [Jonah Goldberg]
Yes, they said the necessary things -- barely. But it sound like it was pulled out of Rather like an impacted tooth. The question is will they do the necessary things?
Posted at 12:21 PM
DUDE... [Jonah Goldberg]
"Heavy equipment jokes"? The mind spins with inappropriate humor.
Posted at 12:18 PM
"HONEST MISTAKE"? [Jonathan H. Adler]
Dan Rather said "if I knew then what I know now," he would not have aired the documents. This is unbelievably disingenuous. CBS News knew document experts had serious concerns about their reliability. CBS News knew about the Killian family's doubts and was provided names of people who served with Killian who could have confirmed their suspicions. If people in their pajams could rip the memos to shreds in a matter of days, if not hours, CBS News could have vetted them more thoroughly. The claim that the Bush Administration's non-denial was grounds is also ludicrous. The documents were not in Bush's official file and were written by third parties, so there was no way for the administration to know whether Killian had written or believed what the documents contained, especially on only a few hours' notice.
Posted at 12:15 PM
"A MISTAKE IN JUDGEMENT" [KJL]
Dan Rather's statement. An honest mistake, basically, he says. Will people buy it?
Posted at 12:09 PM
WILL IT PLAY IN PEORIA? [Rich Lowry]
I'm headed out to Peoria to give a talk at a dinner for the good people at Caterpillar tonight (if anyone wants to forward me quickly any heavy equipment jokes, that would be great). Then onto Notre Dame for Wednesday's debate with David Corn...
Posted at 11:51 AM
LET ME JOIN... [Rich Lowry]
...all the others in thanking everyone for coming Saturday night, and Kate and Jim O'Beirne for opening their home to us. We are considering holding similar receptions around the country (more on that later), but from now on any NR/NRO gathering will seem a letdown unless Derb is there to sing a revolutionary song in Chinese.
Posted at 11:38 AM
THE PONYTAIL GUY [John J. Miller]
Here's what he asked of Bush-Clinton-Perot, in 1992: "How can we, as symbolically the children of the future president, expect the two of you--the three of you--to meet our needs?" Has a worse question ever been posed to a presidential candidate anywhere? Somebody should have handed this guy a sippy cup and shown him the door.
Posted at 11:24 AM
THREE, NOT TWO [John J. Miller]
I'm disappointed to see that Bush and Kerry apparently will debate three times, not two. My main concern isn't that Bush needs to minimize his chances of making a mistake--even though agreeing to few or no debates is a classic frontrunner strategy. Instead, it's that the debate they would have axed was one of those dumb "town hall" meetings. I can't stand those. The questions are almost uniformly bad, and the questioners always seem to be thinking that the federal government has a role in solving whatever problem concerns them. (Remember that guy with the pony tail in 1992?) I can't think of a worse format. I gather that the Bush folks are still negotiating over the particulars of how this middle debate will be conducted, and they'll probably turn a metaphysically terrible format into one that is merely bad. But it will still be bad. Eight years ago, Clinton refused to debate Bob Dole three times and got away with it. Perhaps the media won't be so forgiving with Bush--he might be portrayed as ducking Kerry, rather than improving the quality of American presidential elections. Still, I wish somebody would consign these "town hall" debates to oblivion.
Posted at 11:13 AM
RE: NOVAK'S COLUMN [Jonah Goldberg]
Lot's of email along these lines:
Jonah, Lots of talk around the virtual water cooler about Novak's column. I'm confused, though: I thought President Bush was a puppet of the neoconservatives?! And how does this jibe with Kerry/Edwards' unsubstantiated attack-of-the-week, re: Bush's supposed secret plan to call up and deploy more National Guard troops? I suspect this is yet another example of infighting spill-over. I'd be very surprised (and angry) if after all we've been through, President Bush suddenly decided to throw up his hands in defeat.
Posted at 11:01 AM
D.C. [John Derbyshire]
Two further comments on Saturday's bash in DC:
(1) From a reader: "Your comments in the Corner about DC remind me of John Kennedy's comment that DC is 'a city of southern efficiency and northern charm.'"
(2) I agree on the fun of seeing what colleagues look like -- people you share the web site & magazine pages with, but never get to meet. Mac Owens looks like Teddy Roosevelt. Which is how you'd WANT him to look.
Posted at 10:48 AM
BUG OUT? [Jonah Goldberg ]
I doubt Robert Novak's column is the final word on this, but he says that the administration is planning for a post election (US and Iraqi) withdrawal from Iraq.
Posted at 10:37 AM
HOW ISRAEL "WON" THE WAR ON TERROR [Jonah Goldberg ]
The TNR cover story is definitely worth reading. Yossi Klein Halevi & Michael Oren lay out how Sharon succeeded in beating back the worst terrorist campaign in modern history. There are a few subtle asides which seem to be aimed at Bush -- winning the war on terror requires being more bipartisan and such -- but even those points are fair and the whole thing offers a very useful overview.
Posted at 10:33 AM
CHARACTER RECOGNITION [Jonah Goldberg]
Thanks to all the advice from readers. Lots of folks said I could do what I wanted with Adobe Reader 6.0. I can't. I don't know why. But I did go to the Mac store and buy Readiris 9.0 and it seems to do everything I wanted and more. Though I have to read the instructions a bit more because some graphics and column heavy docs are a bit problematic.
Anyway, thanks to everyone for the help. Now if someone could explain why searching my harddrive by content (i.e. trying to find docs with specific words in them) just doesn't work on OSX....
Posted at 10:24 AM
DASCHLE'S 95% [Jonah Goldberg]
Yesterday on Meet the Press, Thune zinged Daschle that he was unconstitutionally holding up judicial nominations. Daschle responded, not by questioning the charge of violating the constitution but by saying that the Senate's confirmed 95% of the judges nominated by Bush. As one astute reader notes, Since when is it okay to be only 95% in compliance with Constitution? The issue of course isn't how many judges are confirmed but that they are dealt with according to the correct procedure.
Posted at 10:18 AM
WE HEAR [KJL]
that Thune was LEADING Daschle in tracking after yesterday's debate...51% to 46...
Posted at 10:12 AM
RE: SAT NIGHT [KJL]
We'll post some attendees comments (send them in if you haven't) and pictures a little later...
Posted at 10:11 AM
WHERE WAS THE LIVEBLOGGING? [KJL]
Lots of readers are complaining we had a website fundraiser without liveblogging. I gave it thought, and well, got lazy. I'm pretty sure we'll do it a next time and we can also consider some other possibilities. For an extra x-amount, attendees get to post to The Corner with a commemorative printout. For a triple x-amount they get to take Ramesh home with them to do their college kid's homework and the slacker kid's father's legal brief. Of course, Derb singing Mao in Chinese is...priceless.
Posted at 10:05 AM
COSMO'S DEWCLAW (A GREAT NAME FOR BAND, BTW) [Jonah Goldberg]
Several folks have emailed to ask how Coz's dewclaw is doing. He cracked it last week. We took him to the vet and they cut off the dangly end. They said this was necessary because of the high rate of infection. Anyway, he's doing fine, on antibiotics etc. But he's very sensitive about it. He won't chase balls yet and if he bangs it he runs back to you to make sure it's okay. But he'll be fine.
Posted at 10:00 AM
SATURDAY NIGHT [Jonah Goldberg]
It really was a grand time. Thanks to everyone who came. The O'Beirnes were, as always, generous hosts. I'm still coping with the fact I actually saw Derb sing a Chinese Revolutionary song. Everyone was very sweet to lil' Lucy who liked to give people NR buttons and then take then back. There were a great many requests for Cosmo, but he doesn't do parties like that -- too much close-in foot traffic and drunken lunging stangers who think that Cosmo will tolerate sudden movements from people who are "good with dogs" that he doesn't know. Maybe one day we'll have a giant outdoor NRO picnic where everyone can bring dogs and kids. He'd like that.
One other thing that was great about the get-together was that we NROniks got to see our "colleagues." We never get to meet/see each other. Kathryn and I see each other at most a half-dozen times a year. I'd never met Mac Owens before (Guess what? He looks like a military guy and how I'd like to appear when the first boys come a'courtin' my daughter). Andrew Stuttaford's an extremely decent dude and fun to hang around with (even though, I've learned, he eats whale). And, while I could do without seeing Ponnuru as much as I do -- obviously -- his bride April is always the life of the party as far as I'm concerned.
Posted at 09:44 AM
SEPT. 17 & 18--NOW AND THEN [Mac Owens]
Kudos to Kate for a wonderful get-together on Saturday. It was quite a bash and it was great to actually meet the NR/NRO gang and the NRO readers who attended. It was an honor to be included.
The Civil War buffs among you might be interested in a piece I did commemorating the 142nd anniversary of the bloodiest day in American history, 17 September 1862, the battle of Antietam/Sharpsberg. You can find it here on the Ashbrook site.
Posted at 09:42 AM
THE CBS STORY TODAY [Byron York]
The question at CBS News no longer concerns the authenticity of documents used in the "60 Minutes" report on George W. Bush's service in the Texas Air National Guard. That issue is settled. Instead, the question now is: Which heads will roll? Judging by news leaking out of the network's headquarters, efforts at finger-pointing and buck-passing are in high gear as CBS News prepares to admit that it based its report on forged documents. At the very least, top management seems ready to axe "60 Minutes" segment producer Mary Mapes. Their rationale will be that, during the extraordinarily rushed production of the Bush/Air National Guard piece, executives asked Mapes a series of questions about the documents and relied on her confident answers in deciding to go ahead with the segment. The question then will be whether CBS News executives make the calculation that they can get away with firing just one person in the decision-making chain. CBS News officials certainly remember the "Dateline NBC" scandal which brought down not only the producer of the offending segment, but the on-air reporter for the segment, and, ultimately, the president of NBC News. In this case, the president of CBS News is Andrew Heyward, the executive producer of the "60 Minutes" program in question is Josh Howard, and the on-air reporter is Dan Rather. All were closely involved in the decision to air the Bush piece, and all have vigorously defended the documents' authenticity in spite of overwhelming evidence to the contrary. And there appear to be forces inside CBS -- the network at large, not just the news division -- who are laying the groundwork for the removal of at least some, if not all, of them. Today's New York Times reports that, "The seemingly unflappable confidence of Mr. Rather and top news division officials in the documents allayed fears within the network" when doubts arose about the documents' authenticity. That can be read as coming from executives at CBS/Viacom, which oversees CBS News. In an argument that will mirror the rationale Heyward and others will likely use in getting rid of Mapes, top CBS/Viacom officials could argue -- in this case, with some good reason -- that that they were misled by CBS News officials who expressed confidence in the "60 Minutes" story.
Posted at 09:37 AM
RE: EMMY LEMMINGS [John Derbyshire]
Tim: If that's Tony Kushner's opinion of God, we have come some way since Samuel Beckett got the attention of London theater-goers with the following exchange:
HAMM: Let us pray to God [ . . .] Off we go. [ . . . ] Well?
Posted at 09:36 AM
GQ BREAKS THE STORY [Jonah Goldberg ]
George W. Bush was a spy. Update: Yes, it's a joke.
Posted at 09:31 AM
KERRY AS DUKAKIS [Jonah Goldberg ]
John Fund has a good piece.
Posted at 09:27 AM
E-MAIL FROM SATURDAY NIGHT [KJL]
Subject: Did you all take a holiday?We were at the long-awaited NRO celebration at Kate O'Beirne's house. It was fantastic--wish you had been there! Scroll down for my Sunday (not early in the morning, you might note--always a sign of a good event!) post on it. Andrew Stuttaford is still replaying Derb's singing in his head.
Posted at 09:21 AM
MCCAIN IN LAS VEGAS [KJL]
Senator McCain's office tells me the "Senator McCain paid full value for both his and Mrs. McCain's seats at the De La Hoya/Hopkins fight." Apologies to the senator for the suggestion this weekend on The Corner that it was anyway else.
Posted at 08:57 AM
Sorry there was no Emmys blogging last night. There was other work and sleep happening all around--prepwork for more good things to come on NRO. We were there last year, we'll probably be back. But Gary Shandling was none too tempting. And it sounds like nothing much was missed.
Posted at 08:39 AM
All I'll say is that I'm not holding my breath today waiting for a press conference or statement from a seemingly folding CBS. Remember last time?!
Posted at 08:34 AM
WHEN ALL YOU HAVE IS A HAMMER [Jonah Goldberg]
Every problem looks like a nail.
For weeks, perhaps months, the kibbitzers in the Democratic Party have been insisting that Kerry "go on the offensive" more, attack more, criticize more, etc. Where is John Edwards? Why isn't he attacking? When will Kerry respond more fiercely? Etc etc. A lot of these messages have been transmitted via the New York Times which now seems to see be John Kerry's corner man. If he gets knocked down, they snap some salts under his nose, give him some water and then instruct the man to deliver some body blows.
What I don't get is, well, how should I put this, What the Hell They Are Talking About. All Kerry does is attack, attack, attack. That's ok in the sense that I like rough elections. But, what I don't understand is how the likes of Begala et al can think Kerry's been doing something else. Moreover, what does it say about the candidate and his party that the answer to any shortcoming is to offer more insults, more below-the-belt punches, and distortions?
Posted at 08:26 AM
EMMY LEMMINGS [Tim Graham]
Need we remind you how giving Emmy awards to "Angels in America" is transparently political and anti-religious? From the script here is Kushner’s opinion of God, as spoken by a plastic Mormon statue who comes to life to answer the question of how people change: "God splits the skin with a jagged thumbnail from throat to belly, then plunges a huge filthy hand in. He grabs hold of your bloody tubes. You might slip to evade His grasp, but He squeezes hard, He insists. He pulls and pulls, till all your innards are yanked out. And the pain....can’t even talk about it. And then He stuffs it back. Dirty, tangled, torn. It’s up to you to do the stitching."
Posted at 05:54 AM
WEEKEND RATHERGATE UPDATES [Tim Graham]
For those of you who missed the weekend Rathergate stories in the major papers, there's the Saturday Los Angeles Times. "In the Rush for a Scoop,CBS Found Trouble Fast: Its report on Bush's Guard service offers a cautionary tale in an age of growing competition."
There'a also the Sunday Washington Post. "In Rush to Air, CBS Quashed Memo Worries." It's fascinating when reporters give the media a real closeup as they make sausage. The print edition of the Post featured a full page display of side-by-side comparisons of known memos from Killian and CBS's forgeries. And they've placed the large graphic online.
My favorite part is how Dan Bartlett failing to challenge the authenticity of the documents caused CBS to get even sloppier with its facts. (Notice Bartlett called CBS to get IN to the story, even though CBS protests they were going to get around to calling Bartlett. Uh huh.) Was Bartlett just harried, or was this genius jiujitsu? Let them think they have story, watch it go up in smoke.
Posted at 05:51 AM
RE: ON LANGUAGE [KJL]
The answer, by the way, is that Safire has done "blog." Now, to BLEG and PAJAMAHADEEN.... (We coin any other words here? Jonah, of course, popularized the Simpsons cheese-eating surrender monkeys...)
Posted at 05:42 AM
THAT TOOK LONGER THAN I THOUGHT IT WOULD [KJL]
When I blogged on Safire yesterday, I knew I was being lazy by just asking if he had done blogosphere yet and I vaguely thought my inbox might be full of "you lazy idiot" e-mails (somewhat deserved) before I got off Amtrak yesterday. But it took until a few minutes ago to get one (and he was more polite than I might have expected): "As someone who writes for a purported news website, don't you think it's a little bit embarrassing to ask whether something has been written when you have at your disposal the tools to determine that question yourself? I know I'd be embarrassed."
Posted at 05:30 AM
Sunday, September 19, 2004
HMMMM [Andrew Stuttaford]
Here’s more on a story that the Daily Telegraph has been running with for a few weeks:
”The Italian businessman at the centre of a furious row between France and Italy over whose intelligence service was to blame for bogus documents suggesting Saddam Hussein was seeking to buy material for nuclear bombs has admitted that he was in the pay of France.”
Forged documents, eh? Maybe Dan Rather would like to investigate.
Posted at 09:56 PM
CHEESE WARS [Andrew Stuttaford]
Goat cheese is a bizarre and repulsive product, an insult to any self-respecting plate, drab, tasteless muck that humiliates the taste bud and should revolt all but the starving. That said, it’s difficult not to sympathize with the two Czech farmers who have discovered that Brussels’ regulatory embrace is threatening to crush the life out of their goat cheese business. It’s difficult too not to be impressed by the way that these latter day Schweiks are trying to circumvent the bureaucrats.
They are marketing the cheese as an animal feedstuff in the following way:
"Goats' cheese. Home-made to a family recipe handed down through six generations. Completely in violation of EU regulations, should be used as animal food. Tested on humans."
Unfortunately, as EU Referendum’s Richard North points out, there’s a problem.
Posted at 09:53 PM
GREAT MOMENTS IN THE HISTORY OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE [Andrew Stuttaford]
This comes from a letter to the London Observer from a Professor at Sussex University:
“A radical social analysis should depend upon the recognition of, and respect for, the dexterity by which most people negotiate an active self in this world.”
Last time I looked, letters were meant to be about, um, communication.
Stephen Pollard is not impressed.
Posted at 09:49 PM
WORDS, WORDS, WORDS [John Derbyshire]
"Pajamuhedin" is a stroke of genius.
Though not in the same league genius-wise, I should like to re-affirm my claim to having coined the word "bleg" on this site a couple of years ago.
Posted at 09:47 PM
TAKING TIGER MOUNTAIN (BY STRATEGY) [Andrew Stuttaford]
Washington DC, Saturday night: Derb sang. You had to have been there.
Posted at 08:23 PM
NARAL, CALL YOUR OFFICE [Mark Krikorian]
Another report on the bias against girl babies in India. And it's getting worse, not just because ultrasound technology is spreading, but also because, for whatever reason, affluent people are even more likely than rural folk to kill their unborn daughters. And it's not just the unborn: "Opium is used, as well as oversalted milk, both of which cause the baby to die a slow and painful death. Midwives are known to hit newborn girls on the head or choke them." The right to choose, don't you know.
Posted at 06:46 PM
ENFORCEMENT THAT WORKS [Mark Krikorian]
From the Irish Echo: "A strict new rule for renewing driver's licenses in New York State is prompting undocumented Irish immigrants to quit the United States for good."
Posted at 06:45 PM
ENFORCEMENT THAT DOESN'T WORK [Mark Krikorian]
ENFORCEMENT THAT DOESN'T WORK A big AP feature on "fugitive operations teams" trying to pick out just those illegal aliens who've run off after being ordered deported, but without disturbing any of the other 10 million illegal aliens.
Posted at 06:44 PM
RE: PING-PONG VIDEO [KJL]
A reader told Jonah: "That was so funny I am immediately sending another $20 to the NRO defense fund."
Posted at 06:38 PM
HARD TRUTHS [KJL]
From Father George W. Rutler in his parish bulletin this Sunday (he's the pastor of the Church of Our Saviour in Manhattan--and, also, of course, an occasional contributor to NR and NRO--and even pops in on The Corner now and again): "For several generations it has been the fashion to deny the reality of good and evil, and to reduce human behavior to a pragmatic naturalist calculus of psychological adjustment and maladjustment. Once you shun God and stop believing in the existence of supernatural evil, it becomes hard to explain holiness and villainy. Mixed with political motives, this helps to explain why so many journalists shrink from identifying terrorists as terrorists. With remarkable consistency, our major news services have called those who massacred the Russian children in Beslan virtually everything except evil. Only slightly less remarkable than the term “activists” (Pakistan Times are these euphemisms: “hostage-takers” (Los Angeles Times), “fighters” (Washington Post), “commandos” (Agence France-Presse), “radicals” (BBC), “separatists” (Christian Science Monitor) and “insurgents” (New York Times)."
Posted at 06:27 PM
Pajama Been Bloggin' or whatever they're calling Jim Geraghty today has been blogging away on Kerry and Rathergate and more, despite succumbing to some peer pressure last night.
Posted at 06:18 PM
ON LANGUAGE [KJL]
Somewhat random: Has William Safire done "blogosphere"? And: Isn't "Pajamahadeen" perfect for his next Sunday's column?
Posted at 06:17 PM
OH CAPTAIN, MY CAPTAIN [KJL]
I just got this e-mail from a Marine in Iraq:
Ms Lopez,He's helping a new nation--and reading us and financially supporting us--and inspiring us.
Posted at 06:11 PM
DASCHLE V. THUNE [Jonathan H. Adler]
Today's debate on Meet the Press was blogged at South Dakota Politics.
Posted at 02:51 PM
RINGSIDE SEATS [Jonathan H. Adler]
At the Oscar De La Hoya-Bernard Hopkins championship fight last night, many celebrities were ringside. So were some politicians including New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson and Arizona Senator John McCain -- in seats worth several thousand each, at face value. Given current restrictions on gifts to Senators, how did McCain get his ticket? I doubt he paid that much personally. Perhaps it was paid for by the Senate as part of Senator McCain's research on potential regulation of professional boxing, but that hardly seems like a good use of taxpayer funds.
Posted at 02:46 PM
VEGAS BLOGGING [Jonathan H. Adler]
Nevada is a battleground state, and so there are lots of camaign ads here. Among the 527 ads I've seen in the last 24 hours are the latest Swift Vet ad and the MoveOn.org ad featuring the U.S. soldier in quicksand.
Posted at 02:38 PM
ONE LAST TRY [KJL]
I'm about to hit Amtrak again on my way back from NROpalooza, so one last try, before I hit the tracks: Money is still coming in from our legal-defense-fund drive, but we have not yet made the 65k we need to make up for lost money. If you think NRO is worthwhile, would you take a look and consider if contributing is something you can do?
Thanks very much.
Posted at 11:16 AM
SAINT MAX LINKED TO RATHERGATE? [KJL]
Posted at 11:01 AM
THE GOOD NEWS YOU DON'T HEAR ABOUT IRAQ [KJL]
Posted at 10:59 AM
KERRY NEEDS A MESSAGE [KJL]
Leon Panetta's advice seems right. But, how can Kerry make Iraq one of the issues when his record on Iraq is so--every which way.
Posted at 10:54 AM
D.C. IS FOR LOVERS [KJL]
A reader tries to kill the mood: "I hadn't really thought of it until your post this morning, but DC truly is for lovers. Think of its more celebrated class couples: Wayne Hays/Elizabeth Ray; Wilbur Mills/Fannie Foxe a.k.a. "The Argentine Firecracker"; Clinton/Lewinsky... "
Posted at 10:47 AM
AMAZING [KJL ]
It was a marvelous night at O’Beirnes last night. Kate and Jim were gracious hosts--they really throw the best parties. NRO readers in attendance were overwhelmingly enthusiastic. It was wonderful to meet so many of The Corner community—all of you who HIT REFRESH more than once a day and enjoy learning, listening, laughing, getting angry, and forwarding pieces while reading this website here.
We did have about a 1-1 ratio of NRO writers to readers, which made for lots of fun and fascinating conversation. Questions were asked. Debates were had. We shared the secrets behind Ramesh (he and his lovely bride arrived late because she had received an important award that night, leaving us with a golden opportunity). Derb sang an old Maoist standard in Chinese (Really. Really. Photos to come.). Derb might have been the star of the show until Goldberg the Next Generation showed.
NRO readers came from Los Angeles, Palm Springs, Idaho, Chicago, Michigan, Ohio, North Carolina, New Jersey, and Connecticut. We were delighted and humbled by the treks made and the kind words of thanks and utter enjoyment.
And, of course, readers had some excellent suggestions too—as you always do.
I’m sorry more of you were not able to come, but I’m fairly confident they’ll be more opportunities like this one, and others. On a different level—there’s a hang-out-with-Ramesh opportunity in San Fran this week (scroll down).
Thanks to all who attended this weekend—to support NRO and, frankly, raise our spirits and cheerlead, I hope what we give you in return here day after day continues to be worth your time.
Posted at 10:30 AM
TAXMAN JACQUES [John J. Miller]
The French president wants to tax you.
Posted at 05:45 AM
NRO GET TOGETHER [Jonah Goldberg]
You missed it. Lots of fun. Details in the AM -- or Monday. Oh. First post of the day.
Posted at 02:39 AM