The fact is that almost everyone has dirty hands. Everyone: politicians (even “statesmen”), banks, governments, international organizations, newspapers, universities, scholars—they are now mortified to (have to) admit that they made common cause with Muammar Qaddafi and his favored son Saif. Thursday’s Financial Times carries a half-page article by Michael Peel on some of Qaddafi’s intimates: Tony Blair, the London School of Economics (LSE) and Political Science, the Carlyle Group (America’s most politically wired investment ensemble), the great revolutionary democrat Hugo Chavez, etc.
Turkey is not going to join the European Union. Bald or candid statements are usually unwise, or “impolitic,” which is why politicians tend to avoid them, knowing that they may be falsified by events. But some can be made with absolute confidence, and here is one of them. This question has returned to the news with the recent Turkish visit by David Cameron, during which he said that Turkey should join the E.U. as soon as possible. Whatever my new prime minister may say, it has been clear to me ever since I took any interest in the question that Turkey was not going to join the E.U.
It was a black day in 1985 when Dan Rostenkowski was seduced by respectability. I didn't think so at the time. Like other advocates of tax reform, I was delighted when the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee abandoned a lifetime of Chicago machine politics and Washington interest group hackery. His famous "write Rosty" TV address, endorsing reform efforts, won him plaudits for his high-mindedness and bipartisanship from which he apparently has never recovered. Now Rostenkowski stands as perhaps the principal obstacle to Democratic efforts to seize the political offensive with a tax