March 07, 2008

A Sacred Aura

There is one book that says it all.   An old book, nearly a classic. Oddly, it is rarely mentioned in France.   This book, published in 1957, is titled The King's Two Bodies: A Study in Mediaeval Political Theology.   Its author is Ernst H.

Climate Tweaking Made Easy
12:00 AM

The rough consensus among climatologists these days is that, if we want to stave off the worst effects of global warming, we're going to have to stabilize carbon concentrations in the atmosphere at about 450 parts per million by mid-century (we're at about 383 ppm now). That means whopping emissions cuts, especially in the United States and Europe—but also in China, India, and elsewhere. It all sounds so drastic, no?

March 06, 2008

Canadian Bacon
12:00 AM

An unassuming foreign country has injected itself into the U.S. presidential race: Canada. And though the United States’ neighbor to the north used to pine for the day when someone in Washington would actually acknowledge its existence, with the controversy swirling over the contentious NAFTA discussion between Barack Obama’s economic advisor, Austan Goolsbee, and a Canadian diplomat in Chicago, the government of Canada isn't enjoying its central star role in the U.S.

Howard Dean: This Isn't My Problem
12:00 AM

While Michigan's sending out signals, Florida's melting down further:  Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) warned the Democratic National Committee (DNC) Thursday that it is facing the "biggest train wreck you've ever seen" if a standoff is not resolved over his state's pledged delegates to the party's presidential nominating convention. Nelson sent a letter to DNC Chairman Howard Dean Thursday asking the committee to either accept the Jan. 29 results of the primary election or pay for a redo of the elections, which could cost in the range of $20 million.

Most Absurd Clinton Argument Yet?
12:00 AM

It seems pretty apparent that the Hillary Clinton campaign's "kitchen sink" strategy -- that is, throwing everything but the kitchen sink at Barack Obama -- is working.  It's not the only reason Clinton stopped Obama's political momentum and won the critical Ohio and Texas primaries on Tuesday.  But surely it's one of them. So it's hardly surprising that Obama and his advisers have decided to hit back.  On Wednesday, Obama made clear that he would be responding to Clinton attacks more forcefully in the future -- and asking her to answer the same sorts of quesitons that she has been putting to

March 05, 2008

Eternal Putin
12:00 AM

WASHINGTON--How ironic that the only way for Dmitry Medvedev, the new president of the Russian Federation, to liberate himself from the grip of Vladimir Putin, would be to do the same thing that Putin did when he was chosen as Boris Yeltsin's heir--stage a political coup against his former master. Of course, Putin's and Medvedev's backgrounds and personalities are very different.

Why Hillary Drops Her Final "g"s
12:00 AM

Why isn’t it noticed, or, if noticed, not commented upon? At least in her Ohio and Texas talks, Hillary Clinton drops the final "G" from the "ing" words (participles, gerunds)--an annoyance, especially to those who’ve heard her talking to other people and groups where not one "G" is dropped and she sounds like the young woman who gave a famous Wellesley College commencement address, was one of America’s 100 most successful lawyers, was first lady of Arkansas and the United States, and has been a successful U.S.

March 04, 2008

Experience vs. Change
12:00 AM

With Barack Obama winning 11 contests since Super Tuesday, and appearing well on his way to winning a clear majority of elected delegates, it looks unlikely that Hillary Clinton could win the Democratic nomination without depending on the unelected party stalwarts (“superdelegates”) to push her over the top. History provides us with a test case of this scenario, in which a major party faced a choice between the managerial (but perhaps less than visionary) heir to a successful previous administration, and an inspiring, popular speaker.

John Mccain, Economic Fuddy Duddy
12:00 AM

John McCain will be a formidable general election candidate, I know, but I still think economic policy is going to bedevil him politically. In his remarks to supporters tonight, he devoted all of three paragraphs to economic issues.  That's not a huge amount of attention for what is, according to most polls I've seen, the voters' top concern.  But put that aside and look at the way he talked about it:* I will leave it to my opponent to argue that we should abrogate trade treaties, and pretend the global economy will go away and Americans can secure our future by trading and investing only amon

The Mccain - Clinton Ticket
12:00 AM

It's one thing for Hillary Clinton to attack Barack Obama, the overwhelmingly likely Democratic nominee, in terms virtually identical to those used by John McCain, his presumed general-election opponent. It's another thing for her to do this while explicitly praising McCain relative to Obama:  Defending her provocative television ad suggesting he was not up to the challenge of answering the White House phone at 3 a.m. in a crisis, she told reporters at a news conference Monday in Toledo: "I have a lifetime of experience I will bring to the White House.