Cindy Sheehan

The most up-to-date on-line bulletin Congressman Rangel produces for his constituents has a photograph of him being patted on the cheek by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Its latest dated item is August 28. But Rangel is now in such deep doodoo that not even Ms. Pelosi, who has a very high tolerance level for shmootz (see Jason Zengerle's article about Murthaville and John Murtha in the last hard-copy edition of TNR or in this space), will not be showing her affections for Harlem's representative to Congress any time soon. Still, she also can't bring herself to dump him.

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...and how Universary of Minnesaota Political Science professor Kathryn Pearson is getting into their act. Cindy Sheehan, nutcake par excellence, may challenge Nancy Pelosi for her congressional seat if the Speaker doesn't back impeachment hearings for the president and his vice president. I actually thought that Sheehan, feeling betrayed by old allies and maybe gonzo exhausted, had withdrawn from politics entirely. Apparently not. Who is Kathryn Pearson? Read here. And please contact her ... she is desperate.

Courtesy of MEMRI, you can now learn how the Syrian democracy has taken up Cindy Sheehan as hero. A grieving mother over her son killed in Iraq, she was also a certified nutcase. She was taken up by the self-styled "netroots." But even some of them became mortified by what she said and who she really was. But the Syrians appreciate her.

Military Offensive

10 Excellent Reasons Not to Join the Military Edited by Elizabeth Weill-Greenberg (The New Press, 128 pp., $14.95) Click here to purchase the book. When it comes down to it, military recruiters are salespeople, and like good car salesmen, good military recruiters conceal the downsides of their product. Of course with military recruitment the ante is upped: Being swindled into buying a lemon will set you back a chunk of change; a bad experience in the military will lead someplace worse than an auto mechanic's waiting room.

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Correspondence

BORDER PATROL John B.

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Mall Rats

Were Norman Mailer to pen a sequel to The Armies of the Night, his chronicle of a 1967 antiwar march on the Pentagon, his notes might read something like this: Good news and bad news to report from this weekend’s protest in Washington against the Iraq war—good news because over 100,000 demonstrators turned out to voice their opposition to war, racism, and inequality; bad news because the loudest voices belonged to pre-adolescents. Yes, as I traverse the Mall on Saturday, I cannot escape 13- and 14-year-old girls with peace signs (and the occasional Mercedes logo) painted on their cheeks.

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