The new site for Confessions Of A Political Junkie
IT IS DONE
Begin making your way to www.erickerickson.org
Well, I've made progress on getting Movable Type installed on my site. But, I can't view my entries. Any readers have any ideas?
See, I'm not the only one to think Edwards still has a shot.
Frustration Sets In
Well, I have spent more time out of the work day than I should trying to get this transferred over to my website. All to no avail. Any suggestions?
The Hard Truth
Let's look at who now has a shot at the Democrat nomination, given the Gore endorsement and othe recent events (people in categories listed from most likely to get nominated to least likely):
Probably: Dean Maybe: Gephardt Edwards (don't underestimate the trial lawyers and southern strategy) Clark No Way In Hell: Kerry Lieberman Marvin the Martian Sharpton Mosely BraunThere you have it. The only way for Dean to get knocked off is for Gephardt, Edwards, or Clark to surge in the Feb. 3rd primaries and make it an establishment race vs. the outsider. Kerry f**ked himself. Lieberman was drifting to begin with and Gore sank that ship. Marvin the Martian may have grandfather time, but that's only one fraudulent vote. The others are jokes.
Andrew Weighs In
In connection with the Gore endorsement of Dean, you've seen Kristol and Ponnuru, here are Andrew Sullivan's thoughts, which parallel Ramesh's thoughts and mine.
But, Why Dean Probably Won't Win
By Ramesh Ponnuru over at NRO.
How Dean Could Win
By Bill Kristol in WaPo.
Max On The World
Here is a blog some of you might not have been reading. Thank's to Max I shall now refer to Senator Kerry as John F-ing Kerry. Quite appropriate.
Well, I have decided to go the route of my own website. Hopefully, by tomorrow night, you will be able to go to www.erickerickson.org to read my blog. I think, based on soooo many recommendations, I may just go to Movable Type too.
More on Gore and Dean (McAwful Watch)
I've heard the speculation tonight that Gore wants to run in 2008 and this is his first shot at Hillary. I don't know that he wants to run in 2008, but I think it is a shot at the Clintons. I think Gore understands that Bill and Hillary are entrenched in the party. They have McAwful in place, etc. It has traditionally been that the party nominee for President took over the party. That was true even when the President was of the incumbent party. For example, when Bush 42 ran, he assumed control of the party once his nomination was assured, even with Reagan still in the White House. Clinton did not do that. Clinton refused to let go. Gore should be the rightful leader, especially since he won the popular vote, but the Clintons froze him out. I think this is Gore's revenge. Consolidate Dean's position against Clark (and Leiberman) and lauch an interal coup against the Clinton regime by taking out McAwful and his cohorts at the DNC. At the very least, Gore and possibly Bill Richardson could lead a rear guard action against the Clintons and prevent Hillary from getting nominated in 2008. Watch for more public movement by the Clintons against Dean if this really is a Gore assault against them.
Has a point.
Dean The Centrist
I have been pondering a long blog on whether Republicans should be worried about Dean. If you look at Rich Lowry's cover story in National Review ODT (on dead tree as opposed to online), you'd see the confidence of the GOP and conservatives. But, I keep hearing from people in the know that Dean really is more centrist than he lets on. So, in pondering a blog entry, I came across this over at Real Clear Politics. I think it is spot on. The majority of the nation doesn't give a flying rat's ass about the Democratic primary right now. But, it's hard to avoid at least some discussion. And, all that is being discussed is how Dean = McGovern. He may not, but perception is what matters. When he scrambles back to the center, some of this leftist supports will crumble and some of the center won't give him the time of day. Republicans and independents, however, will still go vote for Bush.
Gore Endorses Dean
Steve vs. Mike
As most people who care about the subject know, Steve Jobs and Michael Eisner don't really like each other. Here is part of an interview from Rolling Stone with Steve Jobs. At this point, the reporter is asking about how Apple Computer approached the music industry about iTunes: "When you went to see music executives, was there much comment about Apple's 'Rip. Mix. Burn.' campaign? A lot of them regarded it as an invitation to steal music. The person who assailed us over it was Michael Eisner. But he didn't have any teenage kids living at home, and he didn't have any teenage kids working at Disney whom he talked to, so he thought 'rip' meant 'rip off.' And when somebody actually clued him in to what it meant, he did apologize. " If not just exaggerated, it says a lot about Eisner's mentality and problems at Disney. I, for one, think it is probably the truth. It explains a lot.
Bush As Conservative
U.S. News: Michael Barone: Choice and accountability(12/15/03): "Bush has redefined conservatism. It is now not the process of cutting government and devolving powers; it is the process of installing choice and accountability into government even at the cost of allowing it to grow. This is an attempt to move government in the same direction as the private sector, which now offers much more in the way of choice and accountability than it did in the 1950s and 1960s, when big corporations and big unions established wage rates, when you worked for one company until age 65 and then depended on that one company and Social Security for your retirement income."
From the Weekly Standard
Trial attorneys are now like the capitalist Robber Barons who sparked the reforms of the Progressive Era. Just as the Robber Barons built America into an industrial giant, so the trial lawyers have made America into a healthier, safer, fairer place to live. That many of them have become billionaires in the process may prove only that they were the first to recognize the need for action. Like their industrial predecessors, however, the new Robber Barons may require public restraint. As Theodore Roosevelt knew, the outsized success of any business endeavor presents problems to the rest of society. If they are to play TR, Republicans will need to begin by granting that Trial Lawyers, Inc., has a critical role to play in promoting health and safety and policing corporate America. Trial lawyers, for their part, will have to begin by recognizing that corporate America is not indestructible and that their litigious successes could end up doing great harm to the nation.
One of the things the NPR story said is that "Experts" credit the Non-Proliferation Treaty ("NPT") with slowing the spread of nukes. I thought liberals assumed that treaties could stop things . . . not just slow them. I thought the NPT was suppose to prevent the spread of nukes from the U.S. and USSR. What do you know, it didn't work. So, now the spin is that it, at least, slowed the spread. Riggghhhhtttttt. How about just admitting it didn't work.
"Experts Will Be Mobilized"
I was driving in the work listening to ... horror or horrors ... NPR. They played a segment on "Atoms for Peace," the Eisenhower administration initiative to harness atomic power for peaceful uses. They ran a 1950's radio promo prepared by, I guess, the government. One of the lines said, "Experts Will Be Mobilized." Ain't that just like the government. The mentality hasn't changed. I want a t-shirt with that slogan.
By the way, shouldn't conservatives and libertarians currently be called progressives and not let the liberals and leftists take that definition. See, e.g.: (1) Who wants to change social security? Conservatives & Libertarians (2) Who wants to change medicare? Conservatives & Libertarians (3) Who wants to change regimes (U.S. excluded)? More conservatives & libertarians than any other. The list goes on. Who is standing in the way of change. Hint: It ain't conservatives and libertarians.
Liberals, Libertarians, and Leftists
I have been asked my definitions for the above. They probably are not original, but as far as I know they are: Liberal: One who believes anything goes and the government should subsidize the activity. Libertarians: One who believes anything goes and the government should stay the hell away. Leftist: A liberal who believes anything goes, but only if especially permitted by the government and overseen by a self-selected group of other leftists. I'll throw in Conservative: One who is like a libertarian, but believes there are certain things that should not be done because they've never been done and there's probably a good reason for that, whether or not the reason is known. Therefore, if the thing is done, it should be done cautiously and slowly. Yeah, I think it is almost harder to define a conservative than any other. Most would say a conservative likes the status quo, or wants no change. That's not true. But, when change occurs, there should be (1) a reason and (2) slow movement toward the change.
Being All Things To All People
Bruce Bartlett makes some great points about Bush and the dollar. I think Bush's economic ideas, outside of tax cuts, stink. He needs to focus on being conservative, not being all things to all people.
You Have Got To See
This. Hat tip to Radley Balko and Andrew Stuttaford. Heh Heh Heh
It looks like Howard is headed toward victory. I hope this doesn't come back to bite Republicans in the ass.
Copyright and the Court's Right
This is a very good article by Jerry Brito on the current copyright case before the Supreme Court. Before you non-lawyers move on, I think you should read it. This case makes for a good political read on the issue of original intent vs. the living constitution. Plus, we'll have Ted Olson going up against a former Scalia clerk.
The Iowa Dinner
Tim Carney, writing for AFF's Brainwash gives us this bit of delightful humor:
Dennis Kucinich took the stage. Kucinich, as usual, was the most exciting speaker. He brought the crowd to its feet promising FDR-style make-work programs for farmers. When the moderator asked him what Iowa would look like after eight years of a Kucinich Administration—a phrase strange enough to make even the candidate flinch—things got downright unreal. He talked about his first trip around the Hawkeye State, the one where he realized the White House was his destiny, and how the mist was rising up from the fields after a rain. The former boy-mayor of Cleveland then saw something he had never seen before: “Rainbows, dancing from field to field. Rainbow Farms!” He got weirder from there and ended by promising that under President Kucinich, we’d all see the dancing rainbows. No other candidate went so far as to promise such a federal hallucinatory-drug benefit program, but they all promised to complete the farmer’s welfare state with new subsidies and anti-competition rules.I bet Dorothy and Toto would vote for Dennis a/k/a Marvin the Martian.
More on Samarra
Here: "The G5 is the world's first 64-bit desktop computer. Pentium 4s are 32-bit processors. The difference looks small but is in fact huge. The Pentium's dynamic range is two to the power of 32, or 4.3 billion. The G5's is two to the power of 64, or 18 billion billion - supercomputer stuff."
Sorry for practically no posts. I had to meet a deadline. I'm writing a section in the Encyclopedia of the Supreme Court and forgot today was the deadline. Yeah, I had calendared it. But, for a variety of technical reasons relating to syncing my PalmPilot and someone checking "handheld overrides PC," it got erased.
Being the attorney for the publisher of Zell's book has its advantages. I just got back from a dinner and book signing for Zell. The room was all old Macon (think of your local country club aristocrats) who are mostly Democrat, but with a good number of Republicans. All agreed with him that the Dems have headed off into left field. He has been signing books like mad. The local Dems are saying that the dagger next to his book on the New York Times list shows that people like Richard Mellon Schaife are buying his book in bulk. Actually, I have it on very good authority that book sellers are buying in bulk because the demand caught them by surprise. For example, here at the local Barnes 7 Noble, Zell showed up for a two hour book signing and two hours after that was still there signing books for a line of people that wrapped around the building. Granted, it's Georgia and he is a local folk hero. But, Zell and the publisher are headed back on the road out of state because the demand has grown.
If President Bush carries the same states in 2004 that he won in 2000, he will win seven more electoral votes. That change, a result of a population shift to Republican-friendly states in the South and West in the last several years, means the Republicans have a slight margin of error in 2004 while the Democrats will have to scramble just to pull even. In 2000, after Florida's 25 electoral votes were awarded to Mr. Bush, he won the presidency with 271 — 5 more than Al Gore's 266. Since then 18 states have either won or lost electoral votes, with 7 states that Mr. Bush won last time gaining a total of 11 electoral votes: Florida picked up 2, as did Texas, Georgia and Arizona. North Carolina, Nevada and Colorado each gained 1. The gain of 11 electoral votes was offset by a loss of 4 from four other Bush states, leaving Mr. Bush with a net gain of 7. The Democrats lost eight electoral votes in six states that went for Mr. Gore and gained one in another, for their net loss of seven. The shift in the electoral map means that the Republicans have a crucial cushion going into the 2004 presidential campaign. Mr. Bush could hold all the states he won in 2000 except for, say, West Virginia and its five electoral votes, and still win in 2004. The Democrats have no such room for error. They must hold all the states Mr. Gore won and add to them to make up the difference. "Before a vote is cast, we've increased our margin," Matthew Dowd, chief strategist for Mr. Bush's campaign, said. "In a race that's very close, those small readjustments in the electoral map will have significance."
Why Dean can't win in '04 election
Answer is here
Dean has run a fantastic campaign by tapping into a very real anger that exists among many Democrats, including this one. I believe Dean when he says he wants to be the candidate for everybody, even guys with Confederate flags on the backs of their pickup trucks. Unfortunately, the reality is that Dean can only be the candidate for people with Darwin fishes on the backs of their Volvos and rainbow decals on the backs of their Jettas. He's not a bad guy, but if he's our standard bearer, Democrats are in deep poop.[emphasis added Big Hat Tip To The Note. I love that last sentence.
Orin Hatch Is A Weenie
I have always respected Orin Hatch, but he strikes me as a weenie. He is an accomodationist who refuses to recognize that the Democrats are playing dirty. He gives in to their demands thinking they will do the same. They don't. He does it again thinking the same thing. The Democrats still don't. Then this story comes along. The press refuses to report it. Hatch boots a staffer and lets the Dems look at the Republicans' files. He's a weenie. Here's what I'm talking about:
A young man in Washington is in danger of losing his job because of something The Wall Street Journal's editorial page published, which prompts me to say, in his defense: He didn't do it. The young man works on the Republican staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee, where I hope Orrin Hatch is reading this. Sen. Hatch, the GOP chairman, is investigating the leak of Democratic strategy memos on President Bush's blocked nominees to the federal appeals courts. The staff memos document the extraordinary influence of liberal special-interest groups on Democratic members of Judiciary. The Journal published excerpts on Nov. 14. (The full memos are available on the Web site of the Coalition for a Fair Judiciary.)[emphasis added] If the blogosphere wants to prove itself, this is a story that we can't allow to die.
Iraqis are overwhelmingly pleased by the fall of Saddam Hussein. More than 40% described the fall of his regime as the best thing to have happened to them all year; less than 1% (0.2%, if you take such over-precise percentages seriously) describe the fall of the regime as a bad thing. Few Iraqis list the end of the occupation as an important priority for them; security and economic improvement are the two top wishes. Most Iraqis report that they are basically content with their lives and expect the future to be even better than the present. While the Muslim clergy are the single most trusted force in the country, 70% of Iraqis reject the idea that government should enforce religion. A large majority believes that democracy would be the best form of government for Iraq.
Wesley Clark's Conspiracy Theory
Read about it here.
Liberal Talk Radio
Byron York has a great article on the advancement of liberal talk radio, which the owners now want to be called "centrist" radio. If you have to hide from what you are, maybe what you are is wrong. Calling yourself "centrist," "moderate," or "progressive" doesn't make you any less of a leftist thug.
Dang The President Too [yeah, I know I used "damn" with the last post, but I can't bring myself to do it here. He is the President.
And I sure do support and admire him.] I love the President. I will do whatever I can to get him re-elected. But I want to vomit over all this spending. He has shown no desire to hault the whoring in Congress and has refused to veto anything. He cannot be principled and sell out to the highest bidder. George, tell Congress to stop it's spending ways. I can't give any more money to your campaign because everything I got back in the tax cut is going to pay for this new medicare entitlement. Who needs Democrats when you have Compassionate Conservatives. Who cares what I think when they know I'll vote Republican anyway.
I have been meaning to blog this since last Thursday. If you did not read Robert Novak's Thanksgiving Day column, read it here. This is disgusting. In 1994, the Republicans ran against Democrat excess and arrogance. What the Republicans did is nothing short of a Jim Wright/Tom Foley bastardization of the process. To threaten and bully their own to get a Democrat style welfare package adopted is sick. Republicans should hault them. I'm not a big fan of John McCain or Chuck Hagel, but they've made the most sense on this issue. We should all contribute some money to Pat Toomey and support Free Market Republican oriented organizations like Club For Growth. We'd be better off with more of them.
White House Christmas Card
Ours arrived today. I don't care for the picture this year too much, but it's nice to get something from the RNC without a solicitation for money in it. It's refreshing to have a President who isn't afraid to use scripture in his Christmas card (though I detest the lack of the word Christmas in the card, but we can't expect much in this multi-culti world of ours). Anyway, I think the message in the card was very personal from the President. The scripture is "You have granted me life and loving kindness; and your care has preserved my spirit." Job 10:12 (NASB)
I hadn't read Jonah Goldberg's column on the FMA. As I said a while back, it is not really a huge issue for me right now -- partly because I don't have a postion on it. But, I do agree with this quote and its sentiments: "I'd probably be in favor of an amendment codifying the principle of the Defense of Marriage Act - which allows states to refuse to recognize the same-sex marriages of other states - the FMA goes much further than that."
It's Too Late George
By now you know that George will has come out in opposition to the Federal Marriage Amendment - something I'm still not sure of and on which I am wavering back and forth. His column is here. In part, George Will states that
Amending the Constitution to define marriage as between a man and a woman would be unwise for two reasons. Constitutionalizing social policy is generally a misuse of fundamental law. And it would be especially imprudent to end state responsibility for marriage law at a moment when we require evidence of the sort that can be generated by allowing the states to be laboratories of social policy.Is that not, however, what the courts have already done in reverse? Haven't the courts "amend[ed] the Constitution to define marriage as between" any two consenting adults regardless of gender -- despite thousands of years of law and religion holding otherwise? Haven't the courts been "constitutionalizing social policy" since, at least, the 70's? It would be "especially imprudent to end state responsiblity for marriage law," but it seems a bit late for that. The courts have already constitutionalized social policy by interjecting themselves into the debate. I have no doubt that the Defense of Marriage Act will be struck down by the Courts and this 4-3 ruling in Massachusetts will become the law of all 50 states. It will not have been done democratically -- but by fiat. It will be impossible to "allow the states to be laboratories of social policy" when they will all be forced to recognize gay marriage. At least the FMA will be decided in a Constitutional and democratic process. If 2/3 of each house of Congress and 3/4 of the states agree the FMA is okay, couldn't that be seen, at a minimum, as the people democratically agreeing with George Will that social policy should not be constitutionalized, as the courts have chosen to do? I hope Ramesh Ponnuru weighs in on Will's column.
By the way, as I dig out from the stack of stuff on my desk, I hope everyone had a safe and enjoyable holiday. Mine was great, but long. I drove from Macon, GA to Clinton, MS on Wednesday night (8 hours). From Clinton to Jackson, LA on Thursday (2.5 hours), from Jackson, LA to BTR to Clinton, MS on Saturday (4 hours), back to Macon on Sunday (8 hours). 22.5 hours to driving total. Okay, my wife drove the last two hours on Sunday.
Econopundit has this post on the national debt. He makes from great points about it, most of which I was ignorant of until I read his post. I'm definitely no economist. The one thing I will say is that I do agree with Hagel and McCain that the Republicans are doing a piss poor job of controlling spending.
My kind of diplomat
USA Today offers this profile of Josh Bolton.
At the State Department, Bolton, 55, is viewed as something of an exotic specimen: a committed, argumentative, conservative ideologue who relishes being blunt. Diplomats traditionally view the world as a place where a web of international organizations and treaties preserve the peace. Bolton sees a more dangerous realm where agreements are unreliable and survival of the fittest rules. He is mistrustful of a treaty-based approach to arms control. He is suspicious of world bodies such as the United Nations. ''The (U.N.) Secretariat building in New York has 38 stories. If it lost ten stories, it wouldn't make a bit of difference,'' he once said.
This is a must read for political junkies.
TCS on the Calblog Controversy
Here is a good write up on the issue of liability for bloggers. It takes off from Justene's problems over at Calblog with the "fine" folks at Infotel. No doubt Justene will kick their ass. And she should.
Real World Rape
This may be a good reason to finally put the Real World out of its misery.
While I'm Thinking About It
Christy and I are headed to Louisiana tomorrow. Rural Louisiana -- as in more cows than people. So, probably no blogging until Monday. Maybe a bit in the morning, but otherwise don't count on it.
Further Confirmation That Bush Will Win Re-Election
The U.S. economy grew at an 8.2 percent annual rate in the third quarter, faster than the government initially estimated as companies boosted inventories in September to meet the surge in demand. The nation's gross domestic product, the value of all goods and services produced, grew from July through September at the fastest pace since the first three months of 1984, when Ronald Reagan was president. The Commerce Department previously reported a 7.2 percent third-quarter growth rate, following a 3.3 percent pace in the second quarter. ``Growth is now super-super strong compared to super strong,'' said Joseph LaVorgna, senior U.S. economist at Deutsche Bank Securities, whose forecast of 8.3 percent was the highest in a Bloomberg News survey.
More on The Economist
A few days ago I posted a link to the Economist's article about the growing divergence between the U.S. and Europe. David Brooks follows up on this in the New York Timeshere. Here's a look:
As we settle down to the Thanksgiving table in a few days, we might remind ourselves that whatever other problems grip our country, lack of vitality is not one of them. In fact, we may look back on the period beginning in the middle of the 1980's as the Great Rejuvenation. American life has improved in almost every measurable way, and far from regressing toward the mean, the U.S. has become a more exceptional nation. The drop in crime rates over the past decade is nothing short of a miracle. Teenage pregnancy and abortion rates rose in the early 1970's and 1980's, then leveled off and now are dropping. Child poverty rates have declined since the welfare reform of the mid-1990's. The black poverty rate dropped 'to the lowest rate ever recorded,' according to a 2002 study by the National Urban League. The barren South Bronx neighborhood that Ronald Reagan visited in 1980 to illustrate urban blight is now a thriving area, with, inevitably, a Starbucks. The U.S. economy has enjoyed two long booms in the past two decades, interrupted by two shallow recessions, and perhaps now we're at the start of a third boom. More nations have become democratic in the past two decades than at any other time in history.[Note: I finally figured out the block quote feature in HTML. Cool!]
Egypt Prefers Saddam to Democracy
Add this report from our friends at Little Green Footballs to the mix.
We should not forget that Palestinians are, to a large degree, considered 2nd class citizens in most of the Middle East. My father says that Jordan, Egypt, Syria, and Saudi Arabia keep the Jew hatred flames alive to keep the Palestinians focused on Insrael instead of the horrible treatment the Palestinians endured at the hands of fellow Arabs.
That Jew Problem
The headline catch your attention? Here's something I've been meaning to comment on. A lot of you realize that there are issues (to put it mildly) between Arabs and Jews. But, because we all believe in getting along, a good number of fair minded and reasonable people think that both sides must share blame. In favor of that is the fact that Israel wins no friends when it levels entire villages to seek revenge. However, in this fair minded balancing, consider this. As regular readers know, I grew up in Dubai, on the Persian Gulf. Perhaps the most free and most modern Arab states. I went to an American school with American teachers. But, in our textbooks the word Israel was blotted out. If it couldn't be blotted out, the eastern Mediterranean would be cut out of the book. Whole sections of the history books covering the 6 day war, etc. would be redacted or simply torn out. My classmates and I use to play a game at the beginning of each quarter (we used those instead of semesters) of racing through our books to see who could find the redacted material first. In 7th grade geography, government ministers expressly forbade the school from teaching us about Israel (our teacher told us). In fact, in that book, the book publisher had a specially printed world map that had Palestine on it instead of Israel. So, for all of you who think both sides are to blame, you may be partially right. But, do you really think a country like Israel can fairly reason with a group of people who refuse to acknowledge the existence of the Jewish state.
Smoke and Mirrors
According to Matt Drudge, the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms has seized several computer servers to see who leaked memos from the Judiciary Committee. It seems the Dems are trying to distract from the fact that the memos contain damaging information about how they are discriminating based on race. I think I could design a powerful 15 second spot for latino television markets about the discrimination of Estrada. It could help the GOP big time.
On Gay Marriage
This is a debate I do not desire to enter. Needless to say, I am against the proposition that homosexual marriage should be permissible. For a very good article, see this over at Commentary. Worth cutting and pasting is this: "Marriage, to say it for the last time, is what connects us with our nature and with our animal origins, with how all of us, heterosexual and homosexual alike, came to be. It exists not because of custom, or because of a conspiracy (whether patriarchal or matriarchal), but because, through marriage, the world exists. Marriage is how we are connected backward in time, through the generations, to our Creator (or, if you insist, to the primal soup), and forward to the future beyond the scope of our own lifespan. It is, to say the least, bigger than two hearts beating as one. "Severing this connection by defining it out of existence—cutting it down to size, transforming it into a mere contract between chums—sunders the natural laws that prevent concubinage and incest. Unless we resist, we will find ourselves entering on the path to the abolition of the human. The gods move very fast when they bring ruin on misguided men."
Rich is in Iraq working with the Coalition. He has a great column with good insights on Iraq. You can read his postings here. To save you some time, here is his most recent one. It covers the rocket attacks in Baghdad using donkey carts. Here is a key paragraph: "[Y]ou can't blame the press corps. The bad guys planned this attack to have the greatest publicity impact; even though, according to the military folks, the attacks were tactically insignificant. "
More senators coming on board for the Medicare plan. For once, I support Kennedy. Filibuster the damn thing.
C. S. Lewis
I didn' realize, and it was nice of Tony Snow to point it out, but in all this hype over the 40th anniversary of Kennedy's assassination, it is also the 40th anniversary of C.S. Lewis' death. Also Aldous Huxley for that matter. Two great men of English and the American President, all three die on the same day. Kennedy may have brought us Camelot, but Lewis gave us something stronger -- renewed faith in an almighty God.
Maybe They're Getting It
F.B.I. Scrutinizes Antiwar Rallies the New York Times reports. It's about time. For those of you familiar with a lot of these globalization marches, you know who the organizers are. More often than not, it is left wing groups like ANSWER -- communist (yeah, I know, but it really is) backed and trained. They teach lots of civil disobedience tecniques including how to make malotav cocktails, how to vandalize, how to destroy, and how to combat police defenses. These are not pacificist protesters. No doubt the libertarians will be upset, but they shouldn't be. While the headline is disturbing, the fact is that these groups pose a latent danger. While the media gives them a certain amount of credibility, the backers and leaders (though not necessarily hippie kid from UCLA who wanted to skip class and protest) are enemies of democracy and supporters of totalitarian regimes like Cuba, North Korea, China, Burma, and Saddam Hussein's Iraq.
In the spirit of Instapundit
Does anyone out there know where I can get some info on the Apache Server that comes with my iMac?
I haven't seen Paul Marshall's article at the Weekly Standard yet, but Jonah Goldberg has this review of it. Sounds interesting and accurate.
An Administration of One
Robert Kagan and Bill Kristol, as usual, have this great piece on the President and Iraq: "The president made great progress this week explaining his vision and strategy to the world. He has placed himself at the level of Reagan and Truman, both of whom were also treated with derision by their opponents. Bush's great task now will be to explain his strategy to his own cabinet and commanders and insist that they begin implementing it."
I'm no proponent, but this does make for a good laugh.
Gee, you mean the Georgia Bar isn't the only one to do this?!
Why I Think Howard Dean Gets Nominated
First, see this post of my views of anecdotal evidence. Now that you know how I view it, let me share with you several conversations I have had with a lot of people from a lot of different backgrounds. There are two camps of Dean supporters I've decided based on these conversations. First are those who think Dean is fantastic, he will clobber George Bush with the voices of the "shut out" of the "poor" of those "yearning to breath free in GWB's fascist state." The other camp consists of those who understand that GWB won't be beaten in 2004, but believe the Clinton's have ruined their party, Dean speaks for those who have been ignored, and he is the most articulate non-Democrat establishment candidate to take on GWB and revitalize/re-energize the Democratic base. These two groups have one thing in common: they think Dean is the one person running as a Democrat who can speak for tradition dems in a powerful, forceful way without being tied down to a Washington insider mentality. I think that is why governors and folks outside the beltway have a historic tendency to win. They don't talk about xyz bill, they talk about people. I think that is why Dean has this in the bag.
I'm going to try this blegging thing out. I need to know if a Qualified Subsidiary S corp, wholly owned by another S Corp, has to pay taxes. I, at first, thought they would. But, the more I read I'm fairly confident that the QSub S will not pay taxes only the holding S will. Do any of my few and far between readers have any experience in this? If so, email me here.
I Doubt This Will Work
I just don't think this spam ban law will work. How on earth will we really track them down?
He's still at the DNC. Interesting thing today -- word is that Bill Richardson has endorsed Dean. We know he has future presidential ambitions, possibly in 2008 against Hillary. Nice to see he's taking an anti-Clinton stand. What makes it more interesting is that he will chair their convention next year, a position in which he was expected to remain neutral.
Well, I think I will start saying McAwful. I've noticed Rush doing that since he's been back. I think it sums it up.
Dammit, I will not surrender, I will not give up, I will not give in.
See Sullivan's second post on this link.
President Bush in London
I haven't written too much about this. I'm glad the visit went well. I agree with Frederick Forsyth. The British Left only march against lovers of freedom. Here is the Economist's review of the visit.
A big payoff in Iowa
Susan Estrick writes this interesting op-ed today about Dean spending in Iowa. (Hat tip: Rick Hasen)
Why I Like John Derbyshire
Read a collection of his quotes and you'll see why.
AAR GO P (in the lake) (Get it?!)
Ramesh Ponnuru adds his typically refreshing perspective to this AAR(GO)P Medicare reform bill.
Canada's political transition
This is an interesting profile from the Economist about the incoming Prime Minister in Canada. Perhaps relations with the US will improve.
I was reading Radley's column over at TCS and noticed on his bio that he had this blog. It's good. Check it out.
Christy (my wife) and I were watching "West Wing" last night and saw the new AARP commercial calling on Congress to pass the medicare reform bill. Powerful. Keep your eyes out for it. I can't believe they put it together so fast and so well.
See here: "[B]elief in the afterlife, heaven and hell are good for economic growth."
New York Times
What I think is news in and of itself is that the memo was leaked to the Weekly Standard. But, I guess because this leak helps the adminstration it will be ignored in favor of the Valeria Plame leak, which arguably hurts the administration. (Really, Plame doesn't because no one understands it and her husband is an arrogant ass.)
Don't You Just Love This
The New York Times, seeking to dismiss the Feith memo now that it is being attacked for failing to report it, is hiding behind the "old news" line. See here: "Government officials with knowledge of intelligence on Iraq said that the reports cited by Mr. Feith were indeed authentic. But they also said they were not new, that some were not credible and that all had been weighed in the preparation of intelligence reports that concluded that the relationship between Iraq and Al Qaeda remained ambiguous at best."
I really don't know him. We've exchanged a few emails. I refer to him as the thin and better looking Tucker Carlson. My wife agrees. He's a Vandy guy, so he can't be bad. Anyway, I just sent him an email. My message: re: Confessore and Marshall - F**k em. That about sums it up. When they try to discredit the messenger instead of the message, they lose credibility.
I had to do a deposition today. It took all day. I gave up even attempting to have lunch. My wife tried a new meal for supper and it wasn't that great. I'm tired and hungry. Andrew Sullivan and his gay marriage posts are making my head hurt. At least he agrees that this should be resolved in the legislature.
Tech Central Station
I like Nick Schultz and very much like TCS. So, I found this piece very interesting, especially it came from Ars Technica, which I rely on for tech news, not political news. Notice what Josh Marshall does. He discredits the writings at TCS because of who owns them. Just because someone advocates a position supporting a client, does not make it wrong. The problem here is that Marshall et al are suspicious of corporations. If it was advocacy of the homeless, gays, AIDS patients, etc., they would have no problem.
Call Your Senator
This needs actions. Bloggers and others who use the internet should be very concerned that the Senate is delaying passage of the permanent moratorium on internet taxation.
Statement by the President
It looks like the White House is prepared to dive into this culture war.
Islamofascists Allied With Communisits
Amir Taheir gives a great primer on the current alliance between terrorists and communists. It seems these groups have allied to take down the United States.
Culture War that is.
George Will: Just say no to steel tariffs
I missed this the other day. I agree with Will on steel tariffs. I like his last paragraph: "Bush may be tempted to play the national security card by arguing that tariffs are necessary because, well, tanks need steel. Five months after 9/11 he told a cattlemen's convention that agriculture subsidies are national security measures because ``this nation has got to eat.'' That is nonsense, but entertaining."
Nukes option by U.S. in Korea
Bill Gertz has the details.
The Economist has this article on American exceptionalism. Actually, scroll down to the bottom and click on "next article."
Cal Blog Under Attack
I've been out of the loop for a few days and haven't been able to keep up with Calblog. It appears that Infotel Publications is after her. A good synopsis can be found here at Right On The Left Beach and also over at Xrlq's site. My law firm has had an encouter with these people, I think. If not them, a group very much like them. One of our partners sons got a demand letter. They pissed off the wrong dentist. His dad the trial lawyer sicked us on them. Sadly, we could help our guy, but we couldn't shut them down.
I grew up in the Middle East where I was the minority. Everyone got along fairly well. So, I make a mistake sometimes that when someone says racism caused something, I discount it. I did not grow up in a culture entrenched with race issues. More often than not I think my reaction is right. Too many people use race as a comfortable excuse. People think they can't excel because of their race, not because they are high school drop outs in a gang. We have lost the ability to speak openly and frankly about issues of race in this country. That's a shame. Until we can, until race is not the crutch excusing failure, I will not change my reaction of frequently discounting race. But, I think sometimes I, and other Republicans, have to say, "Yes Virginia, there really is racism." Of course, Democrats will never admit that racism is not as common as they make it appear. Folks like Jesse Jackson will never admit that black people can be racist too. It's a problem we must overcome.
The Wilder Effect is what Fred Barnes is titling his analysis of Jindal's loss over at the Weekly Standard. I keep telling myself that no, no race did not have anything to do with Jindal's loss. Having talked with friends in Louisiana, I can only conclude that it did. I have to look inwardly and say that I, too, had initial reservations about voting for someone whose immediately family did not hail from the United States. I would have voted for him, but that was my initial reaction. When so many people don't make up their minds until the end, they don't have time to get over that initial reaction. It's a shame.
The Sun, a British tabloid, has a great interview with the President here.
I have this thing about JFK. Every November we have to relive his assassination. Who cares? Really, I mean the guy was our President, he was young, he died tragically, but that was in the 60's. The media keeps drumming up the conspiracy theories, but never prove anything. This JFK thing is a waste of time, though no doubt it sells glossies. It is time to move on.
Here is Rod Dreher's analysis of Jindal's loss. I think he is dead on. One of the best quotes from the piece is, "Given the Louisiana-specific nature of Landrieu's victory, it was impossible to generalize about how Democrats nationally might capitalize on her strategy. Similarly, given that the conservative Blanco only marginally differed from Jindal on policy points (her slightly-more-liberal view on abortion rights helped her with suburban women), it's hard to see how national Democrats can translate her victory into a winning game plan elsewhere. This race was decided on personality — but there's something useful for both parties in that."
Thanks To David Frum
He started me worrying about this trip. I hope Bush can pull it off with his classic charm, that is--his wife.
Bush in London
Am I the only one worried? It is shaping up to be a PR disaster and a security threat. Damn.
The Oscar Goes To . . .
I hope Lord of the Rings wins the Oscar this year, but Master and Commander could give it a run for its money. It was a phenomenal movie and greatly incorporated the Cello and Violin, my two favorite instruments. There was also my favorite piece of music, Prelude to Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major. It is a most excellent movie. Still, it has to compete with a triology that is fantastic.
The Iraq Connection
If you haven't surfed too much today, you need to read this. It is very important reading. Compliments to the Weekly Standard for uncovering it. I doubt we'll hear too much about it in the "mainstream" media.
I'm out of town for the weekend -- my wife's family constantly has birthdays. We are at another one. Any way, if you read this and you live in Louisiana, don't forget to go vote for Bobby. I'm off to see Master And Commander with the wife and in-laws.
A Final Thought
The whole "go it alone" vs. "do nothing without a coalition" thing stems from liberal distrust of the marketplace. Liberals have some grand notion that people, other than conservatives, work for the greater good and not self-interest. They reject the notion that working for one's self-interest works toward the greater good. That's why so many liberals are such asses. They think they have a higher calling to the greater good and be damned with their treatment of an individual. Conservatives understand that individuals and nations look out for their own self-interest and that their self improvement and self advancement helps everyone else. France won't join us if it is not in its self-interest and we should not depend on making our self-interest equal to its self-interest. Sometimes we must be willing to go it alone if it is in our national self-interest to go down the path we intend despite opposition.
One More Thing
I am going to predict that the election will not be about Iraq per se. It will be about whether you think 9/11 changed everything or changed nothing. I fall in the everything camp. Though I don't know that it changed everything, it certainly changed enough that we should realize there are some things bigger than politics and there are some times that we must be willing to go it alone for our survival. The everything vs. nothing argument has a parallel that affects many -- that is that there are two camps in this country: Those who believe America is better than the world and those who believe the world is better than America. That dynamic reflects how we think about our country and how we think about the "go it alone" mentality.
It's light blogging today because of multiple deadlines and having to leave work early. But, here's something to think about. I belong to a listserv for election lawyers, professors, etc. I have fast come to think I am the only Republican on the site. It is fascinating to me to see how so many people uniformly take a different approach to things than I would. Most interestingly is today's discussion. Someone asked if there was evidence that Gore actually won Florida. All day I have gotten emails about how Gore did win, he was a coward for not wanting to push the issue, etc. It really strikes me that there is a real community out there that has not gotten over 2000 election. I hope it makes them even more bitter before November 2004. I think that will turn off more Americans to the Democrats.
A New Stockholm Syndrome
Over at Nick Schultz site, (a better name than Tech Central Station), Val McQueen has this take on the prolonged effects of socialism.
Don't Trust Them
Here's a synopsis of what Santorum just said. I disagree. When the Republicans start doing what the Dems are doing, the Dems will end the filibuster with the nuke option.
The Truth Hurts
Brainwash offers this bit of truth on San Francisco's new minimum wage law: "Minimum wage laws cannot make any place, commodity or item “more affordable.” What they can do is make life more expensive for the poor and keep society’s most vulnerable workers—the uneducated and the unskilled—consistently unemployed."
Sounds Good To Me
Movie Review | More: "The Napoleonic wars that followed the French Revolution gave birth, among other things, to British conservatism, and 'Master and Commander,' making no concessions to modern, egalitarian sensibilities, is among the most thoroughly and proudly conservative movies ever made. It imagines the Surprise as a coherent society in which stability is underwritten by custom and every man knows his duty and his place. I would not have been surprised to see Edmund Burke's name in the credits."
Who Says The French Aren't Part Of The Axis Of Evil
I was reading review of Master and Commander> in the New York Times and saw this editorial comment: "It is tempting to read some contemporary geopolitical relevance into this film, which appears at a moment when some of the major English-speaking nations are joined in a military alliance against foes we sometimes need to be reminded do not actually include France." Who says they aren't a foe. We'd be better off if we woke up and recognized them as such.
Robert Novak: Looking closely at Dean
You should read this very interesting take on Howard Dean.
A Panel Above Politics
Senator Roberts writes a WaPo op-ed on the Democrats' memo. Good stuff.
John Fund writes about Mayor Bloomberg this morning. Mayor Bloomberg is not a Republican and has never been a Republican. He changed his party registration so he wouldn't have to have a primary. Republicans should stop coodling him and toss him back to the Democrats. He is the Republican Gray Davis.
Harvard professors oppose affirmative action at the Harvard Law Review.
I am at the point in my career where billable hours really start to matter. Right now I am behind where I need to be. I'm finding it difficult to take time out to blog and bill. I will have to refocus when I do my blogging I guess. So, apologies in advance for light blogging until I can make a reasonable accomodation.
Rise Of The Machines
Glenn Reynolds offers an interesting take on the rise of machines in the workplace.
Read More Here
Charles is the victim of a media vendetta
So says the Telegraph in an excellent article summarizing the latest scandal in Britain.
Remembrance and Armistice Day
We forget more easily than the Europeans that the guns fell silient at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, ending World War One. We suffered -- boy did we suffer. But, we didn't suffer like the Europeans. We had to wait until WWI for that. I forgot today was Veterans Day here. That, I think, is part of the problem. We have Memorial Day and Veterans Day. Neither has a great bit of meaning for the current generation. History is not well taught. We forget about 11-11-11 85 years ago. We have a new 11. All in all, though, we should remember Armistice Day. We should remember that it was a shallow victory no one was happy with. And we should remember that it caused a second war to end all wars. In this current war, we should harness the lessons of the past and remember that we will have no victory unless it is a total victory and we will have no peace unless we are willing to rebuild and reform.
Another Reason I Like Apple
Is here: "For over three years now, Mac OS X has gotten faster with every release — and not just "faster in the experience of most end users", but faster on the same hardware. This trend is unheard of among contemporary desktop operating systems. It certainly didn't apply to classic Mac OS, where every significant new OS version was perceptibly slower than its predecessor on the same hardware. (Yes, System 7 and Mac OS 8, I'm looking at you.) The world of Windows follows a similar trend. It is usually taken for granted that a shiny new OS will not really sing until you upgrade your hardware. "Not so with Mac OS X, as my blue and white G3/400 can attest. It has hosted every version of Mac OS X ever released, and the darned thing just keeps getting faster."
Exit Polling Data From Kentucky & Mississippi
Here. Thanks to The Note for pointing it out.
If you haven't yet, please read this.
Hat tip: Tim Graham over in The Corner.
Have I ever mentioned that I love online Bill Pay with Bank of America. It's fast. It's easy. It's free.
Well, here is the big piece I've been promising. It's of a personal nature, but I decided it makes for good reading if you are a lawyer. My wife's younger sister needs a divorce. She married a guy that no one liked, had a kid, bought him a truck, quit her job, bought a house, and got a new job (all within a year of the marriage and in that order). The guy refused to contribute to the family. He wouldn't keep a job. He bounced checks. He wouldn't come home. She told him to help out or get out. He got out. I don't handle divorce and she can't afford a lawyer. So, I volunteer -- not for her sake, but for the sake of my in-laws, good people who just can't say no to a child. Luckily, we have a great divorce lawyer in our office and Georgia has a great treatise on divorce. I'm studying hard and asking questions. It should be cut and dry. But, here's the rub. There's always a rub. My in-laws expect that we will all share in the subjects and discussions. But, my sister-in-law has some things that should be kept confidential. She's my client. But, I hate to keep secrets from my wife and in-law. That happened once. It was extremely uncomfortable. But, then my sister-in-law spilled the beans anyway. So, here's the rule. Never ever represent a family member. That was my rule before this. I violated it. Now I'm paying the price. But, I'd do it again if it would give my in-laws piece of mind. I can take the ulcer. They can't take the stroke.
Summary of British Politics
Here is a great article on what is going on with Tony Blair. It makes for a good read.
Wes Clark continues to self destruct. Boy, the Clinton cronies didn't know what hit them when they jumped on board the good ship Clark.
Sorry for no blogging. I feel like I've snorted fiberglass and have no motivation to blog today.
Wesley Clark's Sense Of Humor
In response to Dean's remarks abot the Confederate flag, Wesley Clark said, "I think all Americans - and this is a joke! - all Americans, even if they're from the South and 'stupid,' should be represented."
By the way, I've switched from using IE 5 for the Mac to Netscape 7.1. It is much slower, but it does such a better job. Those of you who use blogger know that the screen is divided into four main parts. there is the new post window at the top left, a blog viewer at the bottom left, a calendar at the bottom right, and a draft/change date & time window at the top right. The very top contains the posts/settings/template tab. I get that in Netscape. In IE 5, I only got the new post window and had to click different tabs to get where I wanted to go. It was miserable. I think that Microsoft is so dominate that it operates like a monopoly, even though it really doesn't fit the definition. It gives us half ass products because it knows that most can't go anywhere else. Well, I have a Mac and I'm glad. I just wish WordPerfect would come out on the Mac and I wouldn't use Word at all. I realize that those of you who work with MS Word know no beter, but WordPerfect is heaven. The easiest example I have is how, in Word, you have to use sections for footers, headers, page numbers, etc. In WordPerfect, you don't have to worry about turning off a previous section. If you want a new footer to start on page 5, you just go to page 5 and add a new footer. The previous footer is suppressed. It is devine. If only it worked on the Mac.
Well, thanks for the kind emails. I'm recovering nicely. I had some surgery a while back to remove my uvula (the thing that hangs down at the back of your throat), correct a deviated septum, and remove a bone spur that was blocking my nasal passage (the first time my doctor had ever seen a bone spur in the back of someone's nose). Anyway, I still had inflammed tissue that was preventing me from breathing well through my nose. They went in Friday and burned out the tissue. It hurt, but I am already breathing much better despite all the swelling. Full blogging will resume tomorrow. There will be a few more posts today. I have been putting off a long post that I want to write about, but it's a difficult subject. I'll do so at some point today or tomorrow. Well, it's difficult for me. You all might get some humor out of it.
The Times They Are A Changing
If you haven't read this, read it now.
Stop The Presses
The WB cancelled Tarzan. My wife and I have frequent discussions about things like this. We figure we should be hired by networks to review their shows. We're pretty good at predicting crap shows. Who thought Tarzan in NYC would be a good idea?
Only In California
Very Slog Blog Day
I had surgery this morning on the inside of my nose. I feel like I've been punched in the face. Reading the monitor is a bit painful. I'll get back later. One thing though. It seems pretty damn clear that Bush has just completely taken away the domestic economy issue with the jobs report. Now it's Iraq or bust. And, I don't think a Democrat can win the Presidency rooting for the troops to fail.
A Bad Idea
Here's an interesting article on the importation of drugs from Canada. Anybody who has had Econ 101 knows it's a bad idea.
The Economist has a great article about its development.
Here is the interesting story behind Guy Fawkes Day. It's worth reading. (Hat Tip: Andrew Sullivan)
Under The Radar, But Important
One of the races that didn't get picked up the radar, though is very telling about the elections is this race in Mississippi. It featured a Democrat Lt. Gov. incumbent, Tuck, who switched parties to the GOP last year versus a black lady running on the Democrat ticket. Lots of people were projecting that black voters would go to the polls in droves to elect Mississippi's first state wide black female official. That projection did not pan out. Instead, Tuck won with well over 50% of the vote and Blackmon had the lack of class to refuse concession. In fact, I think it is fair to say that the Mississippi Lt. Gov's race was more contentious than the Governor's race. Those two women were in a cat fight the whole time. When Democrats can't get black voters to rally behind one of their own in a Southern State, they're in trouble in that state.
McAuliffe Watch Cont'd
McAuliffe in Limbo, so says The Hill. But, check these excuses: "DNC leaders, members of Congress and party officials from Alaska to New Mexico to North Carolina said McAuliffe could have done little to prevent Rep. Ernie Fletcher (R-Ky.) from trouncing Democratic Attorney General Ben Chandler and Haley Barbour (R) from beating Gov. Ronnie Musgrove (D) in Mississippi." "[I]n Kentucky, Chandler was saddled with scandals surrounding Democratic Gov. Paul Patton. They further argued that Mississippi, which gave President Bush a 17-point victory over Democrat Al Gore in 2000, was too conservative to fight for and that Musgrove had been an aberration....California’s Oct. 7 recall had been a “perfect storm...”.
Hugh Hewitt Gets It
Republicans on a Roll (McAuliffe Watch)
Fred Barnes has his take on the Republican victories. I think he's right. When Republicans win across the nation, it's all about local issues. When Democrats win, it's all about outrage over Republican control in Washington. His conclusion is great. The link is here.
The Death Penalty
Ramesh Ponnuru rebuts George Will's Death Penalty column here.
Free Market On The Spectrum
Here is a great piece by Stephen Moore of the Club For Growth. Stephen is writing about new technology out there to lower the cost of television, but it's being hindered and delayed by the current users of the television spectrum.
Michael Graham, over at NRO, has an interesting take on a vote last night in Richmond, VA. Read about it here,
CNN Part IV
And, if you couldn't guess, CNN never referred to a baby or child, but instead used fetus. This and the blanket statement that the PBA ban prohibited ALL abortions outside the first trimester. Something that is patently untrue.
CNN Part III
Oh, CNN made sure to point out that "partial birth" abortion (yes, complete with quotes around it) is not a medical term, but a term that opponents of abortion came up with.
CNN Part II
Then there was this, again not the exact quote, but the key words are accurate, "Critics say the partial birth abortion ban infringes on a woman's constitutional right to terminate a pregnancy." Last time I checked, there was no mention of pregnancy in the Constitution.
CNN Part I
I liked how CNN had a text box on the left of the screen while the President, on the right, was talking about partial birth abortion before signing the ban. As the President was saying that Doctors agree that partial birth abortions are almost never medically necessary, the caption on the left said that [not exact quote, but key words are accurate] "According to the President, partial birth abortions are never medically necessary."
Why The Republicans May Yet Get Outspent
Byron York has an interesting piece on how the Dems are raking in money under the radar. Read it here.
Bill Clinton and BJ's
Memo To The Dems
VodkaPundit serves up commentary on the election.
John Derbyshire has an interesting letter from a teacher in China. The teacher discusses a riot by Chinese students stemming from a perceived slur against China. The letter is here.
What Hath Terry Wrought?
Terry McAuliffe is the Chairman of the Democratic National Committee. Yesterday, the Dems lost the Kentucky governorship for the first time in 30+ years. Last year, they lost the governorship of Georgia for the first time since the Civil War! They failed to take back the House or keep the Senate in 2002 -- this despite history showing that the party in the White House more often than not loses seats. They lost the governorship of California. I have had a change of heart. Let's not try to boot Terry -- let's keep him!! Go Terry Go!!!
See how Herbert has invaded the Dems here. (Hat tip: the Corner)
McAuliffe -- Dead Man Walking -- Day 1
Republicans Make Gains in the South. They picked up Mississippi and Kentucky in the Governors races. They are set to maintain Louisiana with a 30-something whiz kid of East Indian descent. When will the Dems oust McAuliffe? Let's begin the countdown today.
Bad New For Some
I wonder if Tim Robbins is in there.
Great piece on Barbara Bush: "[T]aking on one of the president's more withering critics, New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, the senior Mrs. Bush declared, ''Maureen is a brilliant writer, no doubt. I really do not read her anymore as she sounds so bitter, so unhappy, so negative, so clever, and straining to be different. Sometimes I don't even get what she's talking about! I'm sure this won't bother her, but it makes me sad.''"
I am headed to the Dentist this morning and observing the conduct of local elections. But, I have much to blog about, so stay tuned. EE
Why A United Europe Can't Work
It's not that it won't work. It's that a united Europe can't work. It's physically and historically impossible. The recent dispute between Liechtenstein, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic has caused the whole issue to bubble to the surface. It's an old feud. And there are many old feuds in Europe that must be reconciled. For a pretty good take on recent developments, read this.
More Piling On
Have you seen Zell's op-ed today. It's here.
A Tale Of Four Candidates
There are four candidates running as Republicans for the U.S. Senate in Georgia: Johnny Isaakson, the perceived front runner; Mac Collins, I'd say in 2nd place; Herman Cain, I'd say in 3rd place; and Al Bartell, the perennial Republican candidate for everything. I've met Mac Collins. I was inclined to support him because he is my current Congressman, he's very likable, unquestionably a conservative, and would be great in the Senate. Then I compared him to Johnny, who I also know and like very well. Mac doesn't have the fire in his belly that Johnny has. I think Mac can't win. Johnny is very personable. I like his Chief of Staff too. But, Johnny is from Metro Atlanta and, until this race, was not extremely conservative. Fiscally he was conservative (at least when it came to taxes). But he wasn't very conservative socially. He, though, is in this to win. Today I met Herman Cain. He is a black man from Atlanta and the founder/CEO of Godfather's Pizza. He has an impressive resume, he is wholly conservative, passionate, and articulate. He's in this to win. I'm actively considering him. I gave him $50.00. A while back I got lots of calls about Herman. People in Washington were calling to assess his chances. I had never heard of him. I think he will be the shadow candidate this year. He may pull it off, but I see him taking enough votes from Johnny to throw Johnny and Mac in a primary or give it to Mac. I don't know that Herman can get enough south Georgia votes, primarily because of his race. People champion him too much as a black Republican and not enough as a conservative Republican. If things change, and there is some time left, Herman could pull it off.
More Bad News For The Democrats
David Frum has an interesting synopsis of the Yukos scandal in Russia. It's found here. I haven't yet read the Weekly Standard article he's talking about, but will and will follow up with more commentary.
When your mom is a volunteer for Planned Parenthood, no doubt there are certain views for which you have a natural bias. See here at The Corner.
Justices Face Decision on Accepting 9/11 Cases
The New York Times has a pretty good article on the fate of military detainees and the issue of whether the Supreme Court will hear appeals related to them. The article is here. The amazing thing is that the Times actually calls an organization liberal. Truly amazing.
Alliance Between Liberals and Islam
Hat tip to Andrew Sullivan for this interesting editorial. Here's a great quote from it: "It is partly my suspicion that if you scratch a member of the Brotherhood Of Man, you're likely to find a woman-hater, which makes me suspicious of the current alliance between socialism and extreme Islam."
Andrew Suttaford Makes More Sense
See here. If you aren't a regular NRO reader, you won't realize it, but the Weekend is officially Stuttafordorama.
Here They Go Again
A while back, Peter Jennings and ABC News ran a special presentation on Jesus. They centered their views around a group of "Christian" scholars well out of the mainstream of Christian thought. The gist of the story is that Christ was a great man and rebel, but not necessarily the son of God. Yeah, you all have probably heard about it. I kind of liked Jennings until that documentary. But, I'm now fully convinced he's a leftist pretending to be mainstream. [Note to Tim Graham: yeah I already knew he was, but thought he might have redeeming qualities. I'm big enough to admit I was wrong.] Now, ABC is at it again. This time, they're planning on taking the "Da Vinci Code" seriously. Basically, Jesus and Mary Magdalene were married and had a kid. Da Vinci used his paintings and writings to keep the tale alive. The whole theory is fairly crack pot, but again, ABC is attempting to use "credible Christian scholars" to prove that what we think about Jesus is not the truth, or at least there is another equally credible version. There is a very hot place in hell for the folks at ABC News. Read about their "documentary" here.
Calblog is more advanced that me and has a nice picture link. But here is a link to an extremely worthy cause.
Attorney Gunned Down Outside Courthouse
Have you seen the video?
AN OPEN LETTER TO MY FELLOW (somewhat) CONSERVATIVE BLOGGERS
Dear Fellow Bloggers: It appears that the Democrats aren't willing to do it. They haven't got it in them to accept that they made a mistake. They have now started sinking so far below the mainstream, they are drowning. In the spirit of "it's better to have two parties of ideas instead of one party of ideas and one party of nutjobs," let's help them out. I propose that, starting on Wednesday, November 5, 2003, (the day after Republicans pick up the governorships in Mississippi and Kentucky) we begin the official "Terry McAuliffe Death Watch." Let's recap: *They haven't ruled the House since 1994. In fact, the Republicans picked up seats in 2002. *They lost the White House in 2000. *They had to get Jeffords to jump ship to take the Senate. *They lost the Senate in 2002. *They failed to capitalize on an incumbent President's party losing seats in a mid-term election. Instead, they lost seats. *They lost California. *They appear likely to lose Kentucky. *They appear likely to lose Mississippi. *They appear likely to lose to an whiz kid of Indian descent in Louisiana. *They did not beat Jeb Bush. *They did not gain a majority of governorships in 2002. *They still can't lock down majorities in state houses across the country. *They lost the Georgia Senate in 2002 - despite rigging redistricting to be in their favor. Terry McAuliffe has led them during this time (Actually, Bill and Hillary have, but we can't hold them responsible -- they don't accept responsibility for losses). We cannot abandon the party of abortionists, tree huggers, mainstream communists, and Marvin the Martian (a/k/a Dennis Kucinich). They need our help. Let's use the power of the blogosphere to help them make the right decision beginning on Wednesday, November 5, 2003. Sincerely, Erick Erickson
Bobby Takes The Lead
Bobby Jindal has opened up a good lead against Kathleen Blanco in the Louisiana Governor's race. If things hold, Republicans will keep Louisiana and pick up Mississippi and Kentucky. If that happens, Terry McAullife should be fired. While the Kentucky race is getting all the notice because it has for so long been Democratic and appears about to turn, I still think the Louisiana race is the biggest news. For the first time ever, Louisiana has the chance to elect a real reformer AND one who is of Indian descent. That, in and of itself, is big news. Having an overwhelming Catholic, white/black state elect someone most of them view as a foreigner is fantastic. Bobby will get change and get it right!
Jobs, Jobs, and Jobs (No, not Steve)
EconoPundit is always a great source outside of the media and government when it comes to economics. He's pretty darn good at it and I'm glad Glenn Reynolds got me hooked on the site. Check out this post, which indicates that the job loss rate is headed to zero and the job creation number is headed to 5 million by November of 2004. Against, yesterday the President won re-election.
Unless you are vastly interested in the subject, you most likely don't dwell on the current politics of Russia. After spending years worried about a communist invasion, it is nice to be able to relax (somewhat). But, if you haven't paid attention, you might not have noticed how Russia is slowly descending into a thugocracy. There is an interesting article in the Economist on Russia's round up of a lot of oligarchs -- the folks who got rich by buying USSR business relics cheaply during the economic transformation of the 90's. You can get a taste of it here.
Mainstreaming Janice Brown
Xrlq makes a great point.
Sullivan on Derbyshire
Andrew Sullivan is still taking on John Derbyshire. I like them both. But, I don't think, as Sullivan argues, that you can exchange an intolerance of homosexuality for an intolerance of Jews. One is ethic and one is lifestyle. And, I think Derb is right, to some degree, so is Sullivan. An organization overwhelmingly populated by folks of one kind, will tend to defend their own. The difference is that homosexuality is a lifestyle outside the norm with Israel and Jews are inside the norm. The liberals who support homosexuality generally tend to support palestinians, solely because they are the underdog. If gays become mainstream they'll lose their liberal support. I suppose that is what Sullivan wants. But, I disagree with him on this particular issue.
(Hat tip: K-Lo)
Paul Krugman On The Economy
The guy just can't be happy with a Republican in the White House and the economy booming: "The Commerce Department announces very good growth during the previous quarter. Many observers declare the economy's troubles over. And the administration's supporters claim that the economy's turnaround validates its policies. That's what happened 18 months ago, when a preliminary estimate put first-quarter 2002 growth at 5.8 percent. That was later revised down to 5.0. More important, growth in the next quarter slumped to 1.3 percent, and we now know that the economy wasn't really on the mend: after that brief spurt, the nation proceeded to lose another 600,000 jobs. The same story unfolded in the third quarter of 2002, when growth rose to 4 percent, and the economy actually gained 200,000 jobs. But growth slipped back down to 1.4 percent, and job losses resumed. My purpose is not to denigrate the impressive estimated 7.2 percent growth rate for the third quarter of 2003. It is, rather, to stress the obvious: we've had our hopes dashed in the past, and it remains to be seen whether this is just another one-hit wonder."
My wife is currently watching this show. It's doing its anti-gun episode. You know the one, the kid finds the gun and drops it. It goes off. Everyone realizes how evil guns are and they shouldn't be in the house. A show as predictable as it is wrong.
Trent Lott Is Right On Iraq
Read here: “If we have to, we just mow the whole place down, see what happens. You’re dealing with insane suicide bombers who are killing our people, and we need to be very aggressive in taking them out.”
Winner of the "What The Hell Were You Thinking" Award: Don Luskin
Eschaton/Atrios is being threatened by Don Luskin, the NRO writer. Luskin is a great guy with a great Krugman rebuttal history, but this is stupid. Anyone want to start an Atrios Legal Defense Fund. I disagree with him 100% on the issues, but hell, I'd support him in this fight.
Well, I have spent the past few days and all of today trying to close a deal to buy multiple radio stations. I'm done. I have left early to get some remaining signatures and then sit on my couch, stream music over iTunes, and close my eyes to tune out the world. My head hurts. It was my first solo big deal, over $3mil. I'm glad it's over.
Part of me thinks this is stupid, the State Department should change to reflect a post 9/11 world. But, part of me thinks they made the right call. I'm leaning that way.
It appears I might have been too quick to demand William Hague ride to the rescue. It appears that Michael Howard will work out nicely. A politician who is both loyal and not inclined to speak ill of others would be a novelty.
here: "Near rock-bottom short-term interest rates, along with President Bush's third round of tax cuts, have helped the economy shift into a higher gear during the summer, economists say."
Zell Miller Endorses Bush
More good news for the White House.
Bad Day For the Constitution
Sandra Dee says the Court will use International Law as opposed to the Constitution.
George Will considers Mitt Romney's desire to impose capital punishment in his state, the state whose name I dare not spell. These words might come back to haunt me, but I've always believed it was better that one innocent man die than ten guilty men go free. I realize we're suppose to think opposite of that, no doubt my law school would be horrified I just wrote that, but I've typed it. I agree with that sentiment.
The Mississippi Election
Robert Novak very deftly describes why it is important for Democrats to win in Mississippi. I hope the GOP doesn't let them. The Dems seem very determined to use every dirty tactic they can, including lots of negative ads.
Today George W. Bush Won Re-Election
The Pollyanna Conspiracy
A rare good column by William Safire.
John O'Sullivan on British Tories
Great summation by John O'Sullivan on the current sorry state of affairs among British Tories. Where is Thatcher when you need her.
Problems With Lawyers
Last evening I had to go to a small, rural Georgia county to meet with representatives from the local county commission, development authority, board of education, tax assessors office, etc. The county is trying to pacify its largest employer with a bond deal to help it build a new plant, or something. Bond law is not something I am an expert with, but I work with a guy who is a genius at it. Anyway, everyone is confused about this deal. We're dealing largely with volunteer officials who have to sign off on important documents. The company's lawyers in Atlanta are drafting everything. Guess when these poor folks got the 500 pages of documents to review? Last Wednesday, five hours before their meeting to approve the deal. I struggle to read 100 pages an hour in a bond deal. How did these folks in Atlanta expect volunteer government agents to?! Notwithstanding that, the primary document then went through 14 or 15 drafts and 8 substantive revisions -- with the last revision happening at 5:00 p.m. Today, I'm in another deal that is suppose to close tomorrow. I fell into this one on Thursday of last week and I'm trying my best to get up to speed. Well, my client is borrowing money for one company and owns stock in a another small company (actually a majority of the stock). The bank has made similar loans to my client where my client pledges his stock as collateral, but the company that the stock revolves around is not a guarantor. The bank's lawyer for this transaction has decided, along with someone at the bank, that this should not happen. The company should be a guarantor. He may be right, but the fact is that the bank and my client have had a working relationship for 15 years and have done this same transaction repeatedly. When lawyers get involved, things get complicated and often confused and collapse. Conversely, when clients wait until the last minute to bring in lawyers, things get complicated and often confused and collapse. I don't know where to draw the line. But, I do take the position that my job is to carry out my client's intentions as best I am able to get done what they want without complicating the deal, though trying to rid them of any unforeseen areas of potential liability. Complicating it just to complicate it is not my style. Blocking the deal is not my style. I usually send my client a detailed letter saying I'm doing what they want, but if they go through with it, here are all the problems that might result. I'd rather let them make an informed decision, than destroy a 15 year working relationship with a friendly bank. Am I wrong?
Jonah Goldberg has a great idea.
David Brooks on Pork Barrel Republicans
True Believers, Please Rise is David Brooks' column on the Boeing deal going on in Congress. The deal reeks of corruption. It may not be illegal, but as Brooks asks, "does it make you proud to be an American." We forget that the Demcrats ran Congress with ideals that eventually got corrupted. In 1994, they were so corrupt, they got tossed out. The same will eventually happen to Republicans. But, only 10 years after taking power?! That's too short of time to grow as corrupt as the Dems became.
My Wife Wants One
A device to prevent the passenger in front of you from reclining in an airplane.
Max Boot takes on the North Korean topic with a viewpoint I hadn't thought of, but is clear, concise, and does not use the war option. Read it here.
People forget that one of the most prominent black Republicans in the United States is the Secretary of State of Ohio. Pete DuPont (who should be Secretary of the Treasury) has a great column on Blackwell's efforts to repeal an Ohio tax increase here.
Thrown Back is a blog by a young Catholic priest who is taking part in the vigil with Terri Schiavo's family. It's well worth reading. (Hat tip: Rod Dreher)
The Investor Class
WaPo offers this article on the rise of the investor class. It's an interesting article, but I think it only tells part of the story. They give mention to the fact that the investor class is too big to be a distinct political class, but I think that is too comfortable. I think that the class as whole is a political class with clear trends towards the GOP. Ramesh Ponnuru has more on this over at NRO in the Corner. See here.
Byron York looks at a very interesting Democratic poll here.
Madame Chiang Kai-shek, a Power in Husband's China and Abroad, Dies at 105
The NY Times obituary is here. She went to school her ein Macon, Georgia, and was a pen pal of my mother's.
(Hat tip: Jay Nordlinger)
Rich Goes To Iraq
Rich Galen of Mullings fame is headed for Iraq to promote the reconstruction effort. I enjoy his column and it is a shame that he needs to do so. But, in a day and time when the media refuse to report good news and make money off of overly hyped bad news, it is necessary. He is the right man for the job. God speed and God bless Rich.
Kutcher For Edwards
This is just ridiculous. Is it too much to ask for one of Hollywood's cool people to be a Republican. And what of Demi. I thought she, like Bruce, was a Republican.
An Economy Of Aesthetics
George Will's column looks at the economy of aesthetics in light of (and a review of) Virginia Postrel's excellent book.
The Novak column also highlights something I've noticed about the Senate Republicans. He says, "Many Republican senators, mirroring their business supporters, would like to concede Kennedy's triumph on judges and get on with their own agenda." That says so much about the Republicans. The Senate tends to be a body out of touch. They have six years, so they really don't need to campaign until the last two years. They lose the feeling for the people. The Republican voters are fired up, but the Senate won't move. They are more concerned about Senate tradition. Let's not forget that the Democrats would use the nuclear option if given the chance. Republicans should do it. Don't trust the Democrats to play nice if they take control of the Senate again.
It's About Damn Time
Robert Novak previews what is set to be an ugly battle between Repubicans and Democrats over the judicial filibusters. This, I think, is a sleeper issue. I say that because not many people are paying attention. But, Republicans are fired up and independents are trending towards viewing Democrats as nasty. When the Republicans keep harping on the Democrats blocking black women from the federal judiciary, independents will take notice. Now, a lot of people think otherwise. I do think people will notice, though, because it is such an unusual situation. People gave the Republicans control of the Senate and the Democrats are still able to block the President's nominees. It is a lot easier to explain that point than to explain that you're filibustering because the nominee believes Lochner was a great case.
What Kind Of Day
I do not like Mondays. As most people realize, Mondays are days from hell. Everything that happened on the weekend bursts through the dam of midnight and flows into Monday. This morning I returned to the office and had five, yeah 5, emails from Nigerians wanting my bank account number. Usually those don't make it through our spam filter. These did. What a waste of my time.
Star Trek, Again
I think it is no coincidence that the best episodes and movies involved great space battles and intrigue. I was always hoping that this last movie would involve those aliens that attached to the spinal cords of people. Remember how TNG had several episodes that ended in the Enterprise rushing back to earth to kill those creatures and the final scene ended with the creatures sending some sort of signal into space before being killed. I wanted a movie out of that. You could wrap all the series together. Janeway and Picard reassigned unexpectedly. It's all a plot from these aliens to take over Starfleet and pit them in a war with the Romulans. I pictured a cool scene where Jordi was the curator of the Smithsonian and pulled the Enterprise-A out of mothballs (docked, of course, on the Mall in Washington) and the crew had to use it to recapture the Enterprise-E to save the day against these aliens. It would end in a giant space battle. Enterprise-A and E would be crippled. The E would get destroyed and the A would wind up saving the day. All because obviously the aliens would think the dumb humans would use the advanced ship and not rig up the Class A ship to kick major alien ass.
Calblog is discussing Star Trek. I really liked it when I was growing up. In fact, TNG didn't come on until 11pm on Sunday nights where I lived in Louisiana. I'd stay up until midnight on Sundays and watch it, then get up the next morning and drag myself to high school. I think that TNG got way to preachy at times. It was no longer about exploring and beating the hell out of other civilizations, it was about diplomacy, etc. I wanted a western in outer space, what Star Trek was intended to be. I thought DS9 got too confusing and wrapped in nonsense. At least when they went to war it was cool. But, I didn't care about any of the characters. This current Enterprise show is crap. I watched the entire first season. It, like the others wound up, is mired in PC nonsense. The Vulcans are too controlling, the ship doesn't do much, and the characters feel restrained. I'm disappointed.
Well, I left work early on Friday so my wife and I could head up for my father-in-law's birthday. They have currently gone to elementary school football games, and I am cruising Westlaw. I really do like my nephews, but I dislike high school and elementary school football. For that matter, College Football is the only level of that game I genuinely enjoy. So, my wife and I have had to come to an understanding. We live two hours from her parents and the rest of her family. She was originally hell bent on heading to every football game. I finally was able to weasel my way out and I don't intend to get back into the flow of things. It got so bad, she suggested she would find another guy to take her to the games. That didn't go over so well either. She finally accepted the fact that I will not be tortured into going to a bunch of football games. Now I sit at her dad's computer blogging and doing research on the rights of members in electrical membership corporations. What fun. Better than getting sun burned and bored. Besides, I just loaded iTunes on her dad's computer and I'm listening to the streaming radio feed. Nirvana, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Blink-182. Good tunes.
The British Economy
The Economist has this article on the British economy and the possibility of an interest rate increase. That would be bad on many levels for Tony Blair and, I think, the British economy.
Bloomberg is an Ass
See here for details.
Immigrants for President?
The Weekly Standard ponders this question. I am opposed to the idea. It is illuminating to me how there are many natural born Americans of Arab descent who oppose the United States and are willing to side with Middle Eastern terrorists. We are breeding a fifth column that does not need to be elected President.
Justice Scalia just keeps making sense.
Sorry for practically no blogging today. Long day and night at the office so I can leave early tomorrow for my father-in-law's birthday.
They now have Mark Steyn. No more excuses. Subscribe now.
Will on Rumsfeld
George Will has an excellent piece on Donald Rumsfeld. It's easy to forget how much experience in Washington Rumsfeld has.
The Part I Hate
I generally like the practice of law. Today consisted wholly of the parts I hate. Most notably was the fact that I represented a person in court today that I truly felt should have lost on one point. Not that the person was bad or deserved it, but what she wanted was an overwhelming task that I am convinced she is not very capable of handling. Notwithstanding that, I made my case and won. I know I have an obligation to my client, but sometimes I feel like there is a greater obligation. I'm happy I won and I am glad that she got what she wanted, but I worry for her and I don't think she thought beyond the emotions of the case. I know my job is as an advocate, but it is also as a counsillor. I think people forget that my job is to help them reach the best possible decision and then fight for it. The other part of my job I hate is dealing with other lawyers who just don't give a crap. I'm working on a huge deal -- 2 million dollars huge. The other lawyers involved have sent out 14 drafts, yeah 14 drafts of one document today and ignored half of the changes requested. Then, when you call them, they act indifferent or like jerks, and think the problem is you and not them. I'm all for zealous advocacy in litigation and in business negotiations, but sometimes I think lawyers complicate the situation and cause tension where there otherwise would be none.