The New York Times called it a "tirade" when Rep. Tom DeLay calmly noted that Howard Dean McGovern's recent remarks to Democrats about "unilateral" U.S. action in Iraq meant Dean McGovern was either badly uninformed or being deliberately misleading. In DeLay's view, the Democrats were fast becoming "the appeasement party of the future."
Without intending to stop thinking about tomorrow, we beg to quibble. One can't become what one already is and has been, regardless of advances in cloning technology. For years now Democrats have appeased outsiders, leaving our country defenseless. Instead of permitting our government to make its own decisions it has fought to subject the U.S. to the whims of collective forces hostile to its sovereignty, committing the U.S. to international protocols that single it out as the major threat to the safety of our planet. Forced to lower its guard, the U.S. was left unprepared. Accused and convicted on charges of global warming, America stood by defenseless as yet again this week arctic forces pounded its capital with another round of record snowfall. Dark winters are all that lies ahead.
Life in more frigid conditions is bound to become more stressful. In the war memorial state of Maine (named after a U.S. Navy ship that served as a pretext for an earlier U.S. military adventure that never received U.N. approval), Democratic-affiliated teachers and guidance counselors are singling out children of state National Guard members serving in the Middle East for hazing and harassment, arguably not the most effective method of winning the kids over to the new peace curriculum. At a minimum we hope the Maine children are being taught that the Cuba we liberated more than a century ago is now home to one of the world's wealthiest heads of state, Fidel Castro. According to Forbes magazine, the former ballplayer is worth $110 million, and that's after taxes.
Frigid weather translates into corporate coldness where we can least afford it. Word came down from MSNBC this week that the estimable Phil Donahue's show is being canceled. Donahue did not take the decision well, claiming his ratings had actually seen steady improvement, particularly after Carol Moseley-Braun's single backer in Iowa became a regular viewer.
No reason to be glum, Phil, if you consider what's happening to ABC's ice maiden George Stephanopoulos, whose "This Week" show enjoyed its lowest sweeps ratings in 16 years. Its numbers were even lower than "Face the Nation's," which is most often watched during the second half-hour when it's no longer on. But that reminds us: the sports world has a new darling, Ms. Toni Smith, who refuses to Face the Flag during pre-game renditions of our national anthem. The young women plays and protests for Manhattanville College. She is a senior, bothered by "the inequalities that are embedded into the American system," even if that means jeopardizing her many Title IX privileges. If a pro career doesn't beckon there is always Maine, whose teaching ranks need reinforcements for its battles with Spartan children.
In entertainment circles, George Clooney chose Berlin as the launch pad for his latest attacks on Bush foreign policy. London now may never recover its former luster as Hollywood's Hyde Park Corner. Or maybe it will, given that Clooney came off sounding more like the coach of Manhattanville College when he said, "We can't beat anyone anymore." That's sort of the way Saddam Hussein felt, after going one on one with mighty Dan Rather. The interview was marred by Rather's limited knowledge of Arabic, but through the scowls one could decipher his thinking as he zeroed in on Saddam's slick black hair: "It's all about oil."
How sad that Mr. Hussein can't ask Mr. Rogers to handle the next interview. Never again will get to hear Saddam sing to us, while he still qualifies as Enemy of the Week, "It's such a good feeling to know you're alive, / It's such a happy feeling."
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