Monthly Archives: August 2005

An end to polarization?

The great Michael Barone wonders whether we are nearing the end of polarization in our politics. In support of the view that we are, he argues that the leaders contenders for president in 2008 — Hillary Clinton, Rudy Giuliani, and John McCain — are in significant tension, and in some cases outright opposition, with their parties’ bases. It’s worth pointing out that the three contenders Barone cites are “leading” in »

While their violins gently weep

Joe Jackson has loaded a video recording of his appearance this past spring on the Late Night with Conan O’Brien show with Todd Rundgren and the string quartet Ethel here. They perform “While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” with Ethel taking the solo slot until they achieve liftoff. It’s a great kick. (Thanks to Tom Edelstein.) »

World’s funniest busboy

Robert Klein makes me laugh. The sound of his voice makes me smile; his jokes frequently put me at risk of asphyxiation. I think he’s the funniest comedian going, although I don’t think he has much competition in that department either. When I saw him live for the first time, six or seven years ago at a fundraiser in Minneapolis, even his Bush I jokes made me laugh, and his »

“The Fake and the Dead”

Mudville Gazette has an excellent summary of the “Kodee Kennings” hoax, with definitive commentary: There are two types of Iraq war veterans that have a tremendous appeal to the anti-war crowd – the fictional and the dead. Both types have a common, irresistible trait – others can claim to speak on their behalf. Dan Kennings is both types. There are elements to the story that would reveal it as an »

Deutsche Bank Predicts Continuing American Dominance

This article by Jacques-Henri David, head of the Deutsche Bank Group in France, appeared in Figaro on Thursday. It elaborates on a study of the global economy in the year 2020 that was recently completed by the Deutsche Bank Group: In 2020, the United States will remain the world superpower, with a total GNP of approximately $17 trillion to $18 trillion. Thanks to its dynamic demographics (1% annual population growth), »

Street fighting paleo con

John Leo does a pretty good job on the Rolling Stones “Sweet Neo Con” single and current tour: “Rock star ‘con’ job.” Leo poses as Mr. Answer Man fielding readers’ questions: Mr. Answer Man, I see in the newspapers that Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones complained, “George Bush doesn’t listen to us.” What does he mean? I think he means that despite their tremendous body of work, singing all »

The deep meaning of diversity: A case study

Today’s New York Times Week in Review previews the study of the political tilt of law professors by Norhtwestern University Law School Professor John McGinnis: If the law is a ass, the law professor is a donkey.” Adam Liptak writes: The study, to be published this fall in The Georgetown Law Journal, analyzes 11 years of records reflecting federal campaign contributions by professors at the top 21 law schools as »

A Day At The Fair

If you’ve never been to a state fair in a midwestern state–Minnesota, say–you should go. It’s pretty remarkable: a vast area that is more or less deserted for 50 weeks out of the year, like a movie set, suddenly comes alive and, for the last two weeks of summer, has a population about equal to Chicago. For the second year, the Northern Alliance Radio Network is broadcasting live from the »

The Latest From Crawford

Pro-America protesters are descending on Crawford, Texas to counter Cindy (“America is not worth dying for”) Sheehan, Michael (the terrorists are “Iraq’s Minutemen”) Moore, Al Sharpton, and other far-left publicity hounds. The Associated Press has an account (via Power Line News) that mentions the Protest Warriors, whose encounter with the pro-America group was tense, for a moment, until the pro-Americans realized that the Protest Warriors were on their side. We »

Parliamentary Elections in Afghanistan

Liberals who argue that democracy can’t succeed in a pluralistic, predominantly Muslim country like Iraq ignore the stunningly obvious example of Afghanistan. Parliamentary elections will be held there next month; I like this Reuters photo of a print shop in Kabul that is busily cranking out election posters: Reuters’ caption reads: An Afghan worker prints posters of candidates in the country’s upcoming parliamentary elections at a shop in Kabul August »

For Able Danger Skeptics

Tom Maguire addresses this message to Able Danger skeptics (i.e. and e.g., John): Col. Shaffer is changing the story he told the Times and Specter’s staff. That is to say, they all misunderstood him – it was not the FBI with which he tried to liase, it was some other agency. Too many letters, I guess – very confusing. Anyway, this comes from Strata-Sphere and Weldon’s home town paper (which »

A China Connection?

Some writers have speculated that the real purpose of the “wall” erected by Jamie Gorelick and others that prevented intelligence agencies from sharing information with prosecutors was to protect the Clinton administration. In particular, some have speculated that the Clinton administration feared that its illicit dealings with the Communist Chinese, which may have included illegal technology transfers to China and illegal contributions by the Chinese to Clinton’s campaigns, might be »

Down on the killing floor

This summer Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak contributed memorably to the city’s collection of fatuous quotes on the subject of crime when he assured citizens that “Minneapolis is a safe city for those not involved in high-risk lifestyles.” Among the high-risk activities leading to criminal victimization this summer have been sleeping at home in bed and riding a city bus. Today’s Star Tribune adds another installment to the saga of citizens »

Col. Kurilla: The local angle

The Minneapolis Star Tribune picks up on Michael Yon’s account of the Mosul firefight in which Lt. Col. Erik Kurilla was injured: “Blog brings the war home, literally.” Star Tribune reporters Aaron Blake and Rob Hotainken contacted family members for current information on Kurilla’s condition: His family is expecting him to recover fully. “He’s doing good,” said Tommy Raye, 42, a brother-in-law from Bogart, Ga. “I mean, that guy’s a »

Into your life it will creep

At The American Thinker Richard Baehr returns to the Krugmania beat: “More Krugman lies: The Great Unraveling continues.” Baehr writes: Did Byron Calame, public editor of the Times, sign-off on this »

Another Able Danger Shoe Drops

This is shoe number three; Able Danger is starting to look like a centipede. Defense contractor J.D. Smith, who says he worked on the technical side of the data mining project, says he is “absolutely positive” that Mohammed Atta was on the list of terrorist suspects that the group generated. He says that the Able Danger team acquired a photograph of Atta from overseas, and that Atta was just one »

“Breaking from Bush”

Bill Sammon has a good report in the Washington Times about how Republican hopefuls for 2008 are “breaking from Bush.” He cites Bill Frist (stem cell research), George Allen (misguided disagreement with the president’s decision not to meet Cindy Sheehan), and Chuck Hagel (Iraq is Vietnam). Sammon notes the dilemma for Republican presidential hopefuls — Bush’s popularity appears to be declining, but he’s still quite popular with a critical mass »