Horse Trade

On a clear day, when the sun shines so brightly that the Kentucky bluegrass actually looks just a little bit blue, Arthur Hancock can stand atop one of Bourbon County's rolling hills and survey a good portion of the 2,000 acres he calls Stone Farm. He can see the low-slung barns; the tall ash and oak trees; the miles of wooden fence; and, most importantly, the horses. Stone Farm has more than 200 of them—mares looking after their foals, yearlings grazing together, stallions prancing in their private paddocks.

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Split End

How the mighty have fallen. Four years ago the face of Ally McBeal graced the cover of Time magazine over the headline "Is Feminism Dead?" "[F]eminism," wrote reporter Ginia Bellafante, "has devolved into the silly" with "powerful support" from "a popular culture insistent on offering images of grown single women as frazzled, self-absorbed girls." And no one embodied that support more powerfully than Ally, "the most popular female character on television." But times change.

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Welfare State

The fight over drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (anwr) may be over, but it revealed a curious truth: The most zealous proponents of dotting the Alaskan tundra with oil derricks are ... the Alaskans themselves. A poll last year showed that 75 percent of state residents support anwr drilling. The Anchorage Times and Anchorage Daily News both came out in favor of it. And the state's small but noisy congressional delegation--Senators Ted Stevens and Frank Murkowski and Representative Don Young--led the charge on Capitol Hill.

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John Weaver hunches his angular frame over a Styrofoam cup of coffee in the basement cafeteria of the United States Senate and tries to explain what might seem--to an outsider--his peculiar political loyalties. Once a loyal Republican strategist who directed the presidential aspirations of uber-conservative Phil Gramm and helped plot John McCain's maverick primary run in 2000, he has since re-registered as a Democrat and severed consulting ties to all Republicans except McCain, for whom he still serves as chief strategist. "I only work for Democrats now," he tells me.

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What's in a Name?

John weaver hunches his angular frame over a Styrofoam cup of coffee in the basement cafete ria of the United States Senate and tries to explain what might seem--to an outsider--his peculiar political loyalties. Once a loyal Republican strategist who directed the presidential aspirations of uber conservative Phil Gramm and helped plot John McCain's maverick primary run in 2000, he has since reregistered as a Democrat and severed consulting ties to all Republicans except McCain, for whom he still serves as chief strategist. "I only work for Democrats now," he tells me.

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The 1929 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to U.S. Secretary of State Frank Kellogg. And why not? The year before, he had persuaded the great powers to outlaw war. Among those that ratified the historic Kellogg-Briand pact were the democratic countries, plus Germany, Japan, and Italy. High-minded people, deluded that signed agreements shaped history, were delirious with joy. Barely a decade later, of course, most of the world was plunged into war. Did the committee that chose the prize's recipients have any second thoughts?

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The Devil You Know

Alexander Cockburn isn't a big fan of Israel. The Irish expat's column for The Nation, "Beat the Devil," regularly trashes the Zionist entity. Among his typical criticisms: Israel's American supporters are "the spiritual soul-mates of those fanatical Cuban exiles"; Ariel Sharon's "credentials as a war criminal are robust"; the occupation of the Palestinians amounts to genocide.

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Dirty Deal

It's not hard to figure out why the Bush administration and the Republican congressional leadership are wooing the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. They want the union to lobby for opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) to oil drilling. And they really want support and endorsements in states like Michigan and Ohio, where the union's members may hold the balance of power in key House and Senate races—and even in the 2004 presidential election. Less well understood is why Teamster President James P.

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Notebook

BAD DEBT: Amazing how times change. Just six years ago House Republicans threatened to impeach Clinton Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin for using accounting gimmicks—such as borrowing funds from federal employees’ retirement funds—to stay under the federal debt ceiling, which the GOP was loathe to raise. Fast forward to the present, when House Republicans are demanding that Bush Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill do ... exactly the same thing.

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Self Service

For Washington lobbyists, these were supposed to be the salad days. The Bush administration was to be their playground, the regulatory agencies their dolls to dress up and knock down. And on paper they’ve made out pretty well—tax cuts, the squashing of costly ergonomics rules, favorable appointments throughout the government. But for all their influence, D.C. lobbyists have failed to attain one elusive goal: public respect. During the 2000 primaries, John McCain denounced them as one side of the “iron triangle” of special interests that corrupt American politics.

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