The Spectacle Blog

Iran and the U.S.

By on 1.13.06 | 2:39PM

President Bush and German Chancellor Angela Merkel said all the right things on Friday morning, and they appear to be doing the right things too.

According to State Department sources, State Department European expert negotiator Nicholas Burns will be traveling to Europe for meeting early next week to coordinate the united response to Iran's nuclear threats. It appears the United States is now ready to take more of an active role, after leaving negotiations with Iran to European nations for the past two years.

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Donner, Party of Zero?

By on 1.13.06 | 2:30PM

American history buffs will enjoy reading about archeologists' findings regarding the Donner Party's ill-fated winter at Alder Creek. Conflicting stories by survivors led researchers to sift through the primary cooking site. Among 16,000 bone fragments found in that spot, none turned out to be human. Of course, this doesn't conclusively discount Donner cannibalism, but sheds significant doubt on the claims.

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Damascus Daggerfest

By on 1.13.06 | 2:08PM

Syria fratricide update from trusted source. London and MI6 have hold of General Ali Dubah of the Syrian Air Force, who defected last week to give up the secrets of the al-Assads and to pose a deal for the regime change in Damascus. Ali Dubah offers Rifaat al-Assad, exiled brother of the dead king Hafez al-Assad. London favors this choice because it would team a restored Alawite regime with elements of the Sunni urban elite and also with the Druze of Lebanon and Syria -- the one constituency that London trusts in the region.

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DOCEX is Scheherazade

By on 1.13.06 | 1:32PM

Pleasure to see The Connection author Stephen Hayes's Sam-Spade-work digging into the still unavailable documents of Saddam Hussein's terror regime featured in today's WSJ lead editorial.

Spoke to Steve last Friday the 6th, when he published online at Weekly Standard a summary of the search for the truth so far, to reveal that only fifty thousand of an estimated two million captured documents have yet been translated and archived. The project is titled DOCEX, and it goes slowly and without any P.R. from the Bush team or the DOD. What we have so far, from just the period 1999 to 2002, points to three terror training centers in Iraq, at Ramadi, Sammara, Salman Pak, where the regime ran a rent-a-jihad program for a witch's brew of terror gangs.

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John Flym Now Testifying

By on 1.13.06 | 10:44AM

RedState did its homework on this lefty law prof so you don't have to. What did they find? An appearance with Howard Zinn in support of Cambridge, Mass., passing a nuclear-free resolution and defense of a domestic terrorist group. The American Bar Association has already dismissed (pdf) Flym's Vanguard claims against Sam Alito, so this raving is just gravy after a week of Democrat rambling.

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Checking Bill’s Facts

By on 1.13.06 | 10:18AM

A LexisNexis search quickly debunks Bill Clinton's explanation of the failure of his health care proposal.

The first item comes from the Nov. 20, 1994 Washington Times:

But the DLC's growing hostility over the Clinton White House's move from New Democrat ideas really began last fall, when the president unveiled his health care reform plan.

DLC leaders flatly rejected the government-run plan crafted by first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton, saying it was an old liberal proposal that could not pass.

At the time, Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman of Connecticut, a DLC vice chairman, said the plan was "too big, too costly, too bureaucratic."

Publicly, DLC leaders who wanted a cheaper, more market-oriented plan kept their criticism focused on the policy implications of the health care issue. Privately, some of them criticized Mrs. Clinton for pushing the plan on the party and giving Republicans a chance to use it to define her husband as "another big-government liberal."

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Teddy’s Own CAP

By on 1.13.06 | 10:03AM

It should come as no surprise that the man from Hyannisport belongs to an exclusive group of Harvard students and alumni, the Owl Club.

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Clinton Transcript

By on 1.13.06 | 9:45AM

On this morning's "Morning Edition" on NPR, Steve Inskeep interviewed Bill Clinton about worldwide health issues. In the course of discussing his efforts arould the world, Inskeep raised the 1993-94 HillaryCare fight:

Inskeep: Mr. President, we're talking about health care. I want to move to a question about health care in the United States. President Bush has been talking about making improvement of health care in the U.S. a top priority. I wonder if you have any advice for him.

Clinton: Well, I don't know if I have any advice for him, but I think that what we tried to do back in '93 and '94, still has some relevance. The real problem was that we didn't have any money 'cause we had a big deficit so we couldn't provide universal coverage without some sort of employer mandate.

Inskeep: Also couldn't build enough political support for a specific solution in '93 and '94.

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Bremer Backs Down

By on 1.13.06 | 8:18AM

There was a bit of consternation among Pentagon leaders when L. Paul Bremer's book about his Iraq consulship came out. Bremer seemed to be saying that way back in 2003, he was telling Condi Rice that we didn't have enough troops in Iraq to settle the country after the war. One Pentagon senior official I spoke to said Bremer had never mentioned it to DoD which, at least supposedly, he worked for. In today's NYT, Bremer backs off. The money quotes:

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History According to Bill Clinton

By on 1.13.06 | 7:37AM

I just heard Bill Clinton on NPR's Morning Edition, waxing reminiscent about his administration's spectacularly failed health care plan. When he claimed that it bombed because of high deficits, the commentator (a quick one) quickly countered by referencing the political opposition. Roughly quoting: "Oh, well that was just because the health insurance companies didn't want it. But there's enough support today for it." Perhaps they didn't want socialist health care.

I'll check back later this morning with a more accurate transcript.

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