Politics

June 20, 2007

Rudy's Bad Day
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12:00 AM

Talk about your bad days. Not only did Rudy's South Carolina campaign chairman ride off on the white horse; he lost his Iowa campaign chairman as well: Jim Nussle has been tapped to serve as White House budget director. Which raises an interesting question: what's worse--getting indicted on crack* cocaine charges? or going to work for the Bush administration in a job once held by Mitch Daniels? *Late reports indicate that, contra my Bob Roberts joke yesterday, Ravenel was charged with distributing good old fashioned cocaine, not crack. --Jason Zengerle

Conservative Jurisprudence Today
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This has to be among the most depressing things I've read in a while: "Jack Bauer saved Los Angeles. ... He saved hundreds of thousands of lives," Judge Scalia said. Then, recalling Season 2, where the agent's rough interrogation tactics saved California from a terrorist nuke, the Supreme Court judge etched a line in the sand. "Are you going to convict Jack Bauer?" Judge Scalia challenged his fellow judges. "Say that criminal law is against him? 'You have the right to a jury trial?' Is any jury going to convict Jack Bauer?

June 19, 2007

Rail At The Chiefs
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Getting beyond the whole "Is Peter Pace incompetent?" flap, Andrew Bacevich had an interesting article in Sunday's Boston Globe about the dysfunctional nature of the Joint Chiefs of Staff as an institution. While Bacevich certainly doesn't go easy on Pace--"If the position of JCS chair had simply remained vacant for the past two years, it is difficult to see how the American military would be in worse shape today," he writes--he argues that the problem is bigger than any one man.

June 18, 2007

U.n. Truth-telling
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UN Watch is a truth-telling organization based in Geneva. Its mission: to monitor the workings of the United Nations. Alas, these workings are--to say the least--numerically biased towards the dictatorships of the world and ideologically still more or less in the era of well, yes, the dictatorships of the world. A big hallalujah! was sounded when the Human Rights Commission morphed into the Human Rights Council and reduced its membership by just about nothing meaningful. Here's a report from U.N. Watch on the latest shenanigans of the H.R.C. They are mind-boggling.

The Missing Ingredient
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From Stephen Hayes's Weekly Standard piece on Scooter Libby, which quotes from former administration official Robert Blackwill's letter to the judge on Libby's behalf: Sadly, I believe that Mr. Libby's premature departure from the Administration has been a major reason for the downward spiral of the situation in Iraq and the consuming mess in which we find ourselves today regarding that country... It's almost easy to forget how great things in Iraq were throughout 2005, when Libby was still serving the president (and the country).

June 17, 2007

Degrees For A Dictator
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And to think that many of these same high dudgeon, high-minded Brits are boycotting Israel. Peter Godwin is a journalist who knows Zimbabwe; he has known it really from the beginning. Godwin was there and he told his readers what was happening about Robert Mugabe. They were not ignorant but the faculty of Edinburgh University, which awarded the despot an honorary degree in 1984, was ... or made itself ignorant or, worse yet, pretended to ignorance.

June 16, 2007

Supreme Leader: The Arrogance of Anthony Kennedy
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Jeffrey Rosen on Anthony Kennedy's moralistic tendencies.

June 14, 2007

Kennedy Continued
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by Jacob T. Levy Apropos of Jeffrey Rosen's new piece on Justice Kennedy's penchant for freelance moral abstraction, I thought I'd note an instance Rosen didn't mention. (I'm drawing on my paper "Three Perversities of Indian Law.") Under traditional American jurisprudence, American Indian tribal governments have self-governing authority that predates and is not dependent on the American constitutional order.

June 13, 2007

Slavish Support For Hillary
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I think the Gore-Obama ticket was my idea. Maybe it was the idea of thousands of people. It's so obvious. My ripple was that they should (or should have) run together in the caucuses and the primaries. If anything spooks Hillary, it's Al Gore sprinting for the nomination. Gore-Obama, that would throw her out of the ring. And even her dragged-along supporters would heave a big sigh of relief. Bill Clinton himself thinks that Gore is ready to run. And this spooks Bill, too. His dream of a third term in the White House (and a fourth?) would be shattered.

What Would Ed Gillespie Do?
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12:00 AM

So it looks like Ed Gillespie is going to work at the White House. Yeah, I know: big whoop. I'm only mentioning it because I wanted an excuse to refer back to something I heard Don King say during those strange days in the 2004 presidential campaign when he was the Bush campaign's liaison to black America. Speaking of the uber-lobbyist and Republican apparatchick, King declared: "[I]n Ed Gillespie you can hear the word of Jesus cry, 'I've been anointed to deal with the problems of the poor!'" It's a wonder he's not going to work for John Edwards. P.S.

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