Monthly Archives: July 2003

Democrats Ready to Raise Taxes

The Washington Post reports that this year’s crop of Democratic candidates have thrown off the shackles that have burdened their party’s candidates ever since Walter Mondale ran on a tax-raising platform, and are openly vowing to increase income taxes if elected. The conventional wisdom is that this favors Republicans, and on balance that’s probably true. But with every tax cut, as well as every tax increase, the income tax code »

Coulter Book Deal Rumored

Matt Drudge reports that Ann Coulter is about to sign a $3 million deal for her next book, the most ever for a conservative writer. »

Whose quagmire?

Mark Steyn on the politics of Iraq. Put Steyn in the Clinton camp when it comes to how the Democrats should not be playing this one (i.e. the way they are playing it). Here are some highlights: “Dean, Gephardt and about half the other Democratic candidates still live in the real world–or, more to the point, their would-be constituents do. These candidates are obliged to be, in Bill Clinton’s words, »


George Will on Europe’s travesty of a constitution. Not that we’d do that much better if we were starting over today. »

My favorite horse racing film

is the Marx Brothers A Day at the Races. There, neither the horse nor its jockey could talk, although the veterinarian sure could. »

Another Thumb and a Half

Deacon, I saw Seabiscuit last night, and I agree with the Washington Post reviewer who gave it a thumb and a half. It’s good, and the race scenes are terrific. But the movie has a certain flat-footed, ponderous quality that comes mostly, I think, from substituting a well-meaning respectability for the scruffiness of the race track. Plus the treatment of the Depression–with a gratuitous 30-second paean to Franklin Roosevelt–is irritating. »

Latest Saddam Wanted Poster

This is the most recent “Wanted” poster being put up in Iraq (mostly in Arabic, I assume). Note the emphasis on the $30 million being paid to the guy who turned in Uday and Qusay, and the $25 million offered for Saddam. It’s a mistake to underestimate Saddam’s survival skills, but it certainly seems that checkmate is imminent. »

A futile call for reason

Matt Miller, a former Clinton administration official, shares his former boss’s disgust with the over-the-top approach of Democrats to Iraq. Miller’s opening could have been written by one of the Power Line crew, or a reader like Stan Brown: “Poor Democrats! They’ve been driven so mad by George W. Bush that on a day of unambiguously good news – when Odai and Qusai Hussein were killed by U.S. forces – »

Saddam In Mosul?

If this has appeared anywhere else I’ve missed it; the London Times says that during the gun battle with Uday and Qusay, American forces intercepted a signal from a cell phone belonging to Saddam Hussein. They traced the call to a villa in Mosul, but found it empty. Nevertheless, the Times says: “US officers said the intercept was highly accurate, and they were convinced he had been hiding in the »

Maybe Bush’s “radicalism” is not accidental

How different is the Bush presidency, as described (not unfairly) by Jonathan Rauch, from the presidency one would have expected from John McCain? Not very different, I submit. Recall, too, the (not unfair) perception that, had McCain been nominated, he would have trounced Al Gore. »

Is President Bush an accidental radical?

In this article from the National Journal (courtesy of Real Clear Politics) Jonathan Rauch offers perhaps the most thought-provoking analysis of the Bush presidency I have seen. The thesis of Rauch’s lengthy piece is contained in this passage” “George W. Bush has been compared to a number of other presidents, such as Ronald Reagan, Harry Truman, and even William McKinley. It may say something, however, that at the White House »

Poll Results Positive for Administration

Newsweek magazine has become a loony-left publication, with nearly every news story transparently designed to boost the Democrat cause. So I don’t know how much to trust their poll. Still, the latest Newsweek poll data are pretty good for the Administration. President Bush’s approval rating is a healthy 57%, compared to 34% disapproval. The Democrats’ Iraq attacks seem to have had relatively little effect, as respondents say the U.S. did »

BBC Quashes Publication of Testimony

This story is two days old, but I just read about it on Andrew Sullivan’s site and couldn’t resist commenting, as it is one of the most extraordinary news items I’ve seen in a long time. BBC reporter Andrew Gilligan’s testimony before a Parliamentary committee–after which he was described by one MP as an “unsatisfactory witness”–was due to be made public last week. But publication was delayed after the Chairman »

Qusay, Uday, and a father to be maimed later

My friend Craig Harrison passed this vignette along to me: The Newark Star-Ledger reports that on a New York Mets charter flight from Philadelphia to Montreal Tuesday night, an “excited ruckus” broke out in the back of the plane: One of the flight attendants came down and asked why they were so happy. “We got Qusay and Uday,” Al Leiter exclaimed. “I’m sorry,” the flight attendant responded, “I don’t know »

One-and-a-half thumbs up for “Seabiscuit”

Andrew Beyer covers horse racing for the Washington Post. A premier handicapper, Beyer probably has more knowledge and expertise about that which he covers than anyone else at the Post. »

Progress in Iraq

Maj. Gen. Ray Odierno commands the Army’s 4th Division. Yesterday he talked to reporters from Tikrit, and gave an optimistic progress report: –Following the deaths of Uday and Qusay Hussein, tips have been pouring in on Saddam’s whereabouts. Yesterday five to ten of his bodyguards were captured in Tikrit, and one of his wives was found and interviewed. Odierno said, “We continue to tighten the noose….We are hot on their »

Uday and Qusay join Benito

The irrepressible Mark Steyn takes us back in history, imagining the BBC and other left-wing media covering the fall of Mussolini: “Good evening. Reports that the former Italian leader Benito Mussolini is ‘dead’ and ‘hanging’ ‘upside down’ at a petrol station were received with scepticism in Rome today. Our ‘reporter’ – whoops, scrub the inverted commas round ‘reporter’, the scare-quotes key on the typewriter’s jammed again. Anyway our reporter Andrew »