The Spectacle Blog

Re: Thinking Out Iran

By on 3.27.06 | 7:37AM

John: Welcome aboard. We need to do something about Iran, and waiting makes it tougher to accomplish. Please remember me as defining my position by these additional points: (1) we don't have the means to, and shouldn't want to regardless, mount a ground invasion of Iran; (2) we cannot and should not mount airstrikes against their nuclear facilities without simultaneously striking the same way at the regime itself. Were we to do the former without the latter, it would ensure the Middle East in flames for decades, affecting Iraq, Israel and more. If we do both, what would otherwise be the mullahs' political advantage will be a disadvantage to them, and many others in the region will learn from it; and (3) the end state in this war is not defined by democracies rising. I don't care who rules these nations, so long as they don't threaten America.

Someone Please Pull the Plug

By on 3.27.06 | 6:24AM

On the new 007, Daniel Craig. First we had him being scared by the Royal Navy fast boat delivering him to a press gaggle. Next he announced he hated handguns. Then he foreswore booze. Now, according to the Beeb, he's promised us a "fallible" James Bond. What's left? Will he condemn fast cars for all time? Will 007 trade the Aston Martin for a Toyota Prius?

Look, Craig. Bond is a hip-shooting, hard-drinking, fast-car-driving tough guy. Deal with it, or clear out. If the world wanted to see Woody Allen as 007 (which we did in the unmercifully awful first "Casino Royale") he'd have kept the part. Ever wonder why he didn't?

Thinking Out Iran

By on 3.26.06 | 6:53PM

Jed ruled the other day that "it's no longer possible to sit on the fence," so I've given it some thought, and here's where I am: As I've mentioned, I'm somewhat sympathetic to Robert Kagan's view, that bombing Iranian nuclear facilities (as Jed advocates) might be counterproductive, because in the aftermath of such a campaign we won't know what we've accomplished, we could be handing the Mullahs a political victory, and we might not be prepared to deal with Iranian retaliation. Kagan advocates various ideas, all of which I support, oriented toward regime change. He adds:

Convert Freed

By on 3.26.06 | 1:02PM

Abdul Rahman's case was dismissed Sunday for lack of evidence. Since he'd boldly proclaimed his Christianity, the court appears to have buckled under pressure. Let's hope the press and diplomats keep the heat on Afghanistan for some legal reform.

Hillary Unelectability

By on 3.26.06 | 11:40AM

James: There was a letter in the Washington Post's "Free For All" section yesterday disagreeing with your very point. While only Warren Harding and JFK went directly from the Senate to the White House, Mr. Frank Morra of Washington wrote, let us not forget that former senators Truman, Johnson, and Nixon also made it to 1600 PA.

Meanwhile, for you Hillary worriers out there, a letter writer in today's New York Times Magazine blasts Mrs. C. as the second coming of McGovern and Dukakis. It's not so much her being a senator that exposes her weakness as the fact that she chose to carpetbag to blue, blue New York instead of running as a "'favorite son' from her home states Arkansas or Illinois," writes L.S. Cohn of Westfield, New Jersey.

Don’t Bet On Them

By on 3.26.06 | 8:41AM

Worried about Hillary? Uninspired by McCain? Fear not. Modern Senators -- over the past 12 decades -- have almost never won the horse race to the White House. And those that did have had rather a tough go...

More on the Yaliban

By on 3.26.06 | 8:26AM

The Yale Daily News has a great piece on the continuing scandal of Rahmatullah Hashemi, former Taliban flak and now Yale student here. Tune in tomorrow to the Hugh Hewitt Show. I'll be subbing for Hugh again and we'll have a lot on this.

As of tomorrow, it will have been thirty days since the story broke, and we've yet heard anything from Yale prez Richard Levin. Maybe you can get a better response:richard.levin@yale.edu and 203-432-2550.

Re: The Crying Game

By on 3.24.06 | 8:50PM

Yah, mere mortals! Back! Back! Redick's natural bodily potential has been copped to by none less than Lee Melchionni, Wlady, but that didn't stop J.J. from draining so many un-stymied buckets -- right in the face of players far better than LSU's freshmen -- that the glittering constellations of shattered records that orbit his career bring new meaning to the term distraction. And, Dave, if you really want to make Chris Duhon's kid brother cry, have at it, but remember there are a few guys who didn't quite peak as K-lings: Mike Dunleavy, Luol Deng, Elton Brand, Corey Maggette (praise be not upon him)...

I shall now retire to my gold-glittering cave, to brood in scaly majesty for 203 days, 1 hour, 25 minutes, and 30 seconds...

Re: The Crying Game

By on 3.24.06 | 8:05PM

Not to pile up on Reddick, Poulos, or Duke, but what chance do most Duke players have in the NBA? For the most part, they underperform... or just peak during college years under a great system.

Re: The Crying Game

By on 3.24.06 | 7:42PM

My sympathies, James. Any time Duke loses, since it happens so rarely, its fans I'm sure have no resort but to howl at the moon and find consolation in Duke's natural superiority over the lesser forms of life the school deigns to compete with.

Nonetheless I must insist that J.J. Redick enjoyed plenty of coddling -- for at least two season he's been the darling of a media that has protected him at every turn against the occasional lowlifes that show up at Duke at Maryland games to deride his play. But I've noticed that he can dish it out pretty well himself. Perhaps yesterday if he hadn't spent so much time complaining to the referees that he was being fouled by LSU defenders -- on plays that time and again saw him pushing off in a desperate effort to get open -- his shooting concentration wouldn't have flagged.

It could also be that he was a bit too conscious of his clippings. He's a great shooter and great competitor. But in the stratosphere in which he competes, he's really not a great enough athlete to thrive among those more physically gifted. If an LSU freshman could stymie him, what chances will he have in the NBA?

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