Monthly Archives: December 2004

Satellite Photos of the Indian Ocean…

…following the earthquake/tsunami have been released. These might be old news, but I’ve just seen them for the first time. The photo on the left shows a portion of the coast of Sri Lanka shortly after the tidal wave hit on Sunday. The photo on the right was taken yesterday and shows Thailand’s tourist island of Phuket. Click to enlarge: »

For Information on the Earthquate/Tsunami…

…check out The South-East Asia Earthquake and Tsunami. It is an extraordinary collection of data of all kinds relating to the earthquake disaster, including but not limited to information on how to help, and lots of links. That a site like this can spring up in a matter of days is an extraordinary testament to the power of the medium we work in. »

It’s Bush’s Fault, Somehow

All across America, newspaper editors have racked their brains trying to think of ways to blame the tsunami on the Bush administration. Our friend Chad, the Elder at Fraters Libertas, imagines one such conversation at the offices of the Minneapolis Star Tribune: “If it was atmospheric, it would be a no-brainer” Managing Editor Scott Gillespie replied, “just yell ‘Kyoto’ and it’s a done deal.” “But, this is geological. I mean, »

12 fans, 11 players

Our email shows that we have at least a dozen readers who are interested in English Premier League soccer. That’s all the pretext I need to present my EPL mid-season all-star eleven. Dean Kiely (Charlton Athletic) Matthew Upson (Birmingham) John Terry (Chelsea)* Olaf Mellberg (Aston Villa) Frank Lampard (Chelsea) Steven Gerrard (Liverpool) Thomas Gravesen (Everton) Ryan Giggs (Manchester United) Thierry Henry (Arsenal) Andy Johnson (Crystal Palace) Jermaine Defoe (Tottenham) *player »

CIA Housecleaning Continues

Now it’s the agency’s deputy director for intelligence, Jami Miscik, who has been forced out by Porter Goss. This is good news, I think; the previously announced departures have focused on operations, but the agency’s most obvious failings in recent years have been in intelligence. Miscik has only held her post since 2002, so she can’t be blamed for the CIA’s most notorious errors in regard to Iraq. Nevertheless, Goss »

Veering left into a deep ditch

In his timely column for the Standard Online today, Hugh Hewitt explains “how the old media went left into a deep ditch of agenda journalism” and in the process opened the door to the blogs: “A unified theory of the old media collapse.” Hugh adds this intriguing subhead to the title of his column: “Asymmetrical tolerance and the collapse of Big Media credibility: How 2004 brought doom to legacy media.” »

A footnote on Coleman’s column

In his Star Tribune column today Nick Coleman criticizes us in part for being unconcerned about disclosing conflicts of interest, unlike responsible members of the mainstream media such as he holds himself out to be. Although we have rarely mentioned him or his column on this site, it so happens that we have written about him here six times this month. In our six posts about Coleman this month we »

A Columnist Nips at Our Ankles

Poor Nick Coleman, the Minneapolis Star Tribune’s worst columnist, devotes his entire column in tomorrow’s newspaper to attacking us. I’d like to respond to his charges, only I can’t figure out what they are. Coleman says we “pursu[e] a right-wing agenda cooked up in conservative think tanks funded by millionaire power brokers.” If by that he means that we’re conservatives, we plead guilty. The think tank in question appears to »

Back to the (adjusted) future

Writing for Slate, Phillip Carter and Owen West argue that, in terms of casualties, Iraq in 2004 looks like Vietnam in 1966. The fact that more than 6,000 U.S. servicemen were killed in Vietnam that year, compared to about 900 in Iraq this year, is no impediment to Carter and West. If one adjusts for the fact that we had nearly three times as many troops in Vietnam as we »

Addled minds consume alike

E.J. Dionne takes a good-natured look at his “hate mail” (but what about his blogger critics?). It turns out that Dionne has something in common with this critic– we both drive Saturns. »

“The Iranians Are Not Our People”

That’s what Ross Douthat wrote, filling in for Andrew Sullivan. Roger Simon takes Douthat to task: Anyone who doesn’t think Saddam would have delighted in nuclear weapons, and in the post A. Q. Khan world was only a phone call or two away from them, is not thinking straight. Who does Mr. Douthat believe was going to monitor those calls? The United Nations? The problem is that Douthat et al »

Today’s Darwin Award

This is in the “Stupid Hate Crime” category, via Michelle Malkin: Police said a 22-year-old man was charged with filing a false report about a hate crime. Floyd Elliott, of Independence, told police that on Dec. 14, two subjects attacked him in the parking lot of his apartment complex. He said the attackers cut him in the stomach, branded him with a hot knife, and attempted to carve the word »

The Blame Game, and How to Help

My instinct is to be very slow to blame governments and other human institutions for the consequences of natural disasters. (Likewise, when our country was attacked by terrorists, I wanted to destroy the terrorists, not to attack my own government for failing to stop them.) We linked this morning–just scroll down–to an AFP story that blamed the victims of the tsunami for their own demise, on the ground that they »

A different kind of anti-Israeli homicide?

As inevitable as the attempt to blame the natural disaster in Asia on human greed and stupidity (see below) is the rejection by a third world government of help from an Israeli aid mission. Israel was prepared to send a 150-person team to Sri Lanka. The delegation was “planning to assemble a medical facility comprised of specialist doctors, and to set up emergency, internal medicine and pediatric departments, as well »

Asian Tsunami Toll Rising

The death toll is rising toward 50,000, in what is shaping up as the worst natural disaster in a long time. Video footage of a wave hitting a resort in Thailand is available here. Less familiar amateur footage taken by a Norwegian who was on vacation, I believe also in Thailand, can be viewed here. (Thanks to Wes Roth for the tip.) Notwithstanding my all-Norwegian heritage, I can’t read the »

The police chief’s new clothes

RealClearPolitics has posted an entertaining year-end column by Russ Smith lamenting the disappearance of the brief journalistic moratorium on nastiness that used to be the custom of the season: “Enough with the bitching.” According to Smith, the period between December 15 and January 5, like the rest of the year year, has now become one of “all bile, all the time, fair, unfair, balanced and not really fit to print.” »

Number 62 With A Bullet

There has been a lot of buzz about the fact that the next Harry Potter book, which isn’t even out yet, is already #1 on the Amazon best seller list. But, hey, how about Hugh Hewitt’s Blog? It is now available, I guess, but just barely–and it is currently #62 on Amazon’s list. Pretty amazing, considering that the mainstream media have no idea that it even exists. Yet. As we’ve »