September 06, 2007
Forget Iraq, terrorism, and the rickety credit market. This is turning out to be the best year in a while for political sex scandals--certainly the best since 9/11 supposedly focused our leaders on less tawdry pursuits. It's enough to make Gary Condit's head spin: Only eight months old, 2007 has already featured a Washington madam, a cruising senator, a cuckolded campaign manager, and a home-wrecking TV reporter. And while other sorts of recent governmental improprieties have had a decidedly Republican cast, booty calls appear relatively bipartisan.
"indifference To The Truth"
Until Proven Innocent is a book I have not read. But anything that Abigail Thernstrom has ever told me to read expands my knowledge and stretches my mind. She reviews the volume in this morning's Wall Street Journal.This book, written by Stuart Taylor Jr., perhaps the most trusted legal reporter in the country, and KC Johnson, an irreverent but scrupulous American historian, deals with the Duke scandal. No, not the endemic one.
September 05, 2007
A Dysfunctional Administration
The Washington Post follows up on yesterday's piece by Jeffrey Rosen in the New York Times Magazine with a sneak preview of its own of Jack Goldsmith's book about his tenure at the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel. The Post article goes even further than Rosen in depicting the ridiculous bureaucratic political posturing Goldsmith had to engage in to make sure his legal opinions would stick: Goldsmith learned to be a tough interagency player during his tumultuous nine-month stint at the OLC.
But First: Are You Experienced?
Hillary Clinton unveiled a new advertisement today, which you can find below. Its thrust is "change," but the new theme of her campaign is a mashup of "change" and "experience." As HRC said in New Hampshire this weekend: "'Change' is just a word without the strength and experience to make it happen. And I know some people think you have to choose between change and experience. Well, with me you don't have to choose." So far this "experience" theme seems to be keeping Hillary in the lead over Barack Obama. But what does she really mean when she talks about "experience"?
September 04, 2007
All The World's A Stage
Say what you will about the underlying substance, Bush's trip to Iraq was expert stagecraft. The White House knew two things about this week's news cycle: One, that the media would be starved for things to cover after a holiday weekend--ensuring that Bush's visit would get massive play. And two, that this week truly begins a critical battle with congressional Democrats over how the surge (and therefore the proper response to it) is framed and explained for the public. The Bush team's plan worked like a charm. Democrats will straggle into D.C.
This is rich. Joseph Farah, founder and editor of one of the internet's most popular conservative websites, WorldNetDaily, will moderate the GOP "Values Voter Presidential Debate" on September 17th.
September 03, 2007
Playing The Part
Fred, Fred, Fred. If you and your team want to quash the widespread grumbling about your being a spoiled, lazy candidate basing a White House run on little more than your Hollywood celebrity, why do you keep behaving like one? After months of good ol' Fred's jerking voters around with his Hillybilly Hamlet act (should I? could I? dare I not?), now comes word that he has finally finished testing the waters and will take the plunge this week. But instead of making up for lost time by heading to New Hampshire to mix things up with fellow Republicans in Wednesday's debate, what is Fred doing?
September 02, 2007
Get Fired Up!
Hillary, is this why you are really fired up? Please cut the crap. Friday's Boston Globe features a story headlined: "Clinton says N.H.
August 31, 2007
Who's Ignoring What Now?
Over at Andrew Sullivan's place, Jamie Kirchick laments the decline of the "anti-totalitarian left" and claims that the U.S. labor movement has abandoned its counterparts in Iraq: Whereas once the AFL-CIO had a large and effective international office, you'd be hard-pressed to hear, for instance, what they're doing for Iraqi trade-unionists. But hang on, you'd only be "hard-pressed" if you didn't have access to Google. Just this past March, John Sweeney brokered a meeting between "17 top leaders from five Iraqi trade union federations" and the financial institutions working in Iraq.
John Warner And Iraq
This may be overthinking, but my first-blush reaction is that while Virginia Republican Senator John Warner's retirement may be terrible news for the GOP, which will have trouble holding his seat, it might be good news for George W. Bush and his Iraq war strategy. Why? Because Warner, who has provided Bush with key support on Iraq, had been on the hot seat in a state that just elected the stridently anti-war Jim Webb.