My last TRB column was about the prevailing mode of centrist thought in American politics, which is mostly a way of lashing your own opinions to those of others rather than make any independent judgment. I wish I had written it for the next issue, because this last weekend offered up some especially comical examples.
This Daily Mail story beggars belief:
Here, on a sleepy stretch of shoreline at the far end of Asia, is surely the biggest and most secretive gathering of ships in maritime history. Their numbers are equivalent to the entire British and American navies combined; their tonnage is far greater. Container ships, bulk carriers, oil tankers - all should be steaming fully laden between China, Britain, Europe and the US, stocking camera shops, PC Worlds and Argos depots ahead of the retail pandemonium of 2009....
Financial markets have stabilized--people believe that the U.S. and West European governments will not allow big financial institutions to fail. We have effectively nationalized any banking system losses, but we’ll let bank executives enjoy the full benefits of the upside.
In the wake of the display of craziness by Rep. Joe Wilson during the president’s health care speech, and the rather notable reluctance of Republicans to criticize him on substantive (as opposed to protocol) grounds, a perennial question arises: Do these conservative eruptions of extremism actually tilt the national political debate to the Right?
Quote of the day, via Politico:
"It would fill a room," said event director Lisa De Pasquale. "But so would a two-headed monkey. There really are so many more important issues, and it's only a three-day conference."
I doubt it. But that's the price you pay, I guess, if you're a white guy representing a majority-black Congressional district--even if, as Cohen says of himself, he votes "like a 45-year-old black woman." That said, the black politician currently trying to unseat Cohen, former Memphis Mayor Willie Herenton, looks like he might be taking the race-baiting to a whole new level (which is quite an accomplishment when you consider that Cohen's opponent in 2008 tried to link him to the KKK). From today's NYT: