Wednesday, September 26, 2007


Iranian President Ahmadinejad visits the United States and the right-wingers go nuts.

Rick Perlstein provides some perspective on how America dealt with a leader who was much more dangerous:
Nikita Khrushchev disembarked from his plane at Andrews Air Force Base to a 21-gun salute and a receiving line of 63 officials and bureaucrats, ending with President Eisenhower. He rode 13 miles with Ike in an open limousine to his guest quarters across from the White House. Then he met for two hours with Ike and his foreign policy team. Then came a white-tie state dinner. (The Soviets then put one on at the embassy for Ike.) He joshed with the CIA chief about pooling their intelligence data, since it probably all came from the same people—then was ushered upstairs to the East Wing for a leisurely gander at the Eisenhowers' family quarters. Visited the Agriculture Department's 12,000 acre research station ("If you didn't give a turkey a passport you couldn't tell the difference between a Communist and capitalist turkey"), spoke to the National Press Club, toured Manhattan, San Francisco (where he debated Walter Reuther on Stalin's crimes before a retinue of AFL-CIO leaders, or in K's words, "capitalist lackeys"), and Los Angeles (there he supped at the 20th Century Fox commissary, visited the set of the Frank Sinatra picture Can Can but to his great disappointment did not get to visit Disneyland), and sat down one more with the president, at Camp David.
These people claim that they are the tough guys and yet they wet their pants when a pip-squeak shows up in the neighborhood

Friday, September 07, 2007

No Mas 

Republican presidential candidates suddenly discover they have to iron their shoelaces and don't have time to participate in the Univision debate.

If they (excepting John McCain, who was willing to take part) are afraid of participating in a debate that focuses on issues of concern to Hispanic Americans, what assurance do we have that they will stand up to the far tougher issues that confront the President of the United States every day?

The Health Care Lottery 

Roy Edroso on what fuels the debate on health care in America:
Anyone who has looked at a medical bill with his name on it and compared the cost to what he pays for the other necessities of life might experience a memorable moment of terror, even if he is at the moment protected by the blessing of insurance. Health care coverage is, for a lot of us, contingent on employment, and in this groovy entrepreneural era we have learned to think of job security as a joke.
The differential between what is paid for a procedure by an insurer and what is billed to the uninsured is also sure to cause a "there but for the grace of God" moment for most people.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Pray for our Children 

On the planning boards: a Neo-Con wet dream.

(via A Tiny Revolution)

Pray for Us 

James Fallows (commenting on President Bush's lack of memory, as displayed in Robert Draper's new book:
Think about this. The dissolution of the Iraq military is one of the six most-criticized and most-often-discussed aspects of the Administration’s entire approach to Iraq. (Others: the decision to invade at all; the assessment of WMD; the size of the initial invasion-and-occupation force; the decision not to stop the looting of Baghdad; and the operation of Abu Ghraib.) And the President who has staked the fortunes of his Administration, his party, his place in history, and (come to think of it ) his nation on the success of his Iraq policy cannot remember and even now cannot be bothered to find out how the decision was made.
I believe the phrase my father-in-law used is appropriate: "Ignorant and proud of it."

Fall from Grace 

Ken Jenne, arguably one of the most significant political figures in Broward County's history, has resigned in disgrace.

A sad end to a person who was almost always on the right side of local and state issues.

All the more sad that his political demise was over (in the context of public corruption) chump change.

The Hill 

Fascinating article in the New York Times on Hillary Clinton's college years.

I had three reactions:
1) Even as an undergraduate she showed more thoughtfulness than does our current president.

2) The events of 1968 were a major transforming experience in the lives of many of us in college that year.

3) Had the Republican Party nominated Nelson Rockefeller as its candidate in 1968 Hillary might be running for president this year on the GOP ticket.

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