July 12, 2007

Diversity In The Academy

By John McWhorter Since the Supreme Court last week decided against Seattle and Louisville, Kentucky's policies of assuring a certain degree of racial diversity in public schools, we have heard much about the undoing of Brown v. Board. However, I have a hard time mourning the decision, though the brute notion that we must ignore race to get beyond it is, surely, simplistic. Preliminarily, I think of the plethora of schools nationwide where all the students are brown and yet excellence is a norm.

The Future Supreme Court

By Richard Stern I enjoyed Cass Sunstein's recent speculations on the possible transition from the present conservative (rather than centrist) Roberts-led court to a liberal one of the sort over which Chief Justice Warren presided. My interest in court matter was ignited sixty-seven years ago when I read Drew Pearson and Robert S. Allen's The Nine Old Men and wrote in my Hunter College Model School yearbook that I wanted to be a Supreme Court justice. The chief redeemers of that beknighted court, Brandeis and Cardoza, were Jews, as high as such people as I could go in that era.

July 11, 2007

Cap V. Isg

The Center for American Progress warns liberals not to fall for the Iraq Study Group renaissance now underway in Congress: There are growing signs that the White House and Republican legislators, having previously rejected the ISG report late last year, will now seek to co-opt the ISG recommendations this summer and fall to provide a bipartisan veneer to their efforts to pretend they are shifting course in Iraq. We acknowledge the important contributions made by the ISG and its co-chairmen James Baker and Lee Hamilton, but progressives need to point out that some of the ISG's recommendations a

More Edwards

Say this for the Edwards campaign. If Edwards does manage to win Iowa, it looks like his campaign will have an operation in place in New Hampshire to capitalize on it. From Marc Ambinder: John Edwards's New Hampshire campaign manager, Beth Leonard, is adamant: for all the talk of Edwards putting all of his chips into winning Iowa, his campaign is investing heavily in New Hampshire, too. The campaign has ten field offices open now and Leonard oversees 40 full-time staffers.

Sara Taylor's "oath To The President"

Via TPMmuckraker, this is a devastating one-minute exchange between Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy and former White House political director Sara Taylor. In a way I think it explains quite a lot about the past six-and-a-half years: Even one NRO writer says of Taylor's performance today: It's a total disaster. Leahy is just schooling her. She is dissheveled, inarticulate, bumbling - lots of "uhs" and "ums," and at times answers that appear to open the door to more questions unnecessarily.... Keith Olbermann is going to have a field day with this footage.


It is with great sadness and great pride that the staff here at The New Republic says goodbye to our very own Ryan Lizza. Ryan is moving to The New Yorker, where he will be the magazine's Washington correspondent. A fantastic opportunity for him, and a treat for New Yorker readers, we wish Ryan nothing but the best in his new endeavor. A brilliant and insightful journalist, Ryan has reported for TNR on everything from the corrupt reign of Liberia's Charles Taylor to the Senate campaign of George Allen.

Nixon, Nixon, Nixon

More Richard Nixon tapes were released yesterday, and, as usual, there are some goodies: In the document, written in December 1970 to H. R. Haldeman, a top aide, Nixon expresses both anger and pain that his aides have not been able to establish an image of him as a warm and caring person.

A Final Thought Experiment About The Constitution And The Vice President

By Sanford Levinson I have argued against attempts to impeach President Bush, not least because I seriously doubt there is evidence that he has committed a "high crime" or "misdemeanor," as against displaying catastrophic misjudgment and incompetence that, alas, is not, according to most well-trained lawyers, impeachable. But assume that Harriet Miers, whose testimony Bush is desperately trying to prevent, were to testify that she indeed discussed the US attorneys with Bush and that he indicated that he had decided to sell the appointments for large contributions.

Hillary Gets It

I haven't said this before. But Hillary Clinton has it absolutely right: "There are not many good options" for U.S. policy on Palestine. Yes, "the security of Israel is best served by helping to create a Palestinian Authority that can provide tangible benefits for its people, in contrast to the violence and isolation offered by Hamas." The real question, however, is whether the P.A.

A Big, Important Hearing

I don't know how long these hearings will be going on. But they are mighty interesting, and they are on right now. This hearing, called by Representative John Conjers, Jr., chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, may be viewed on C-Span 3 or via the link to the committee web cast: Click on "webcast." Oh, yes, what are the hearings about? It is called a hearing on "The Use and Misuse of Presidential Clemency Power for Executive Branch Officials." The big star, predictable though he may be, is former ambassador Joseph Wilson. If you missed it, sorry.