The Guardian newspaper reported this morning that the British equivalent of Al Gore, young Mr. Phil Sands, was kidnapped in Iraq on Boxing Day and rescued about a week later by surprised US troops who were searching the building he was held in pursuit of bad guys. Mr.Gore, who has - fortunately -been missing for months is reliably reported to have been sighted somewhere in the DC area, in which he is expected to give a speech tomorrow. In response to which we can reasonably be expected to reiterate the question, as Mr. Sands related to the Guardian, asked by the US trooper who discovered him.
The Spectacle Blog
John: MoveOn's relationship to the liberal press is that of a monkey to the mirror on the wall of his cage. There's only one side to the hyperlib story, and it makes the Military Industrial Complex look complicated. The liberals -- their radicals, media and congressbeings -- all live in the same bubble, and within the bubble there is a thermodynamic equilibrium. No heat or light enter or leave, no changes are allowed. And, they think, it will always remain undisturbed. Which is why they believe their press allies will always be faithful and immune to the real world economy. Fire liberal reporters? Fie on those who would fire. How dare they?
I don't know, Jed. It would seem to be against MoveOn's long-term interests to force bloated liberal newspapers to go bankrupt rather than making staff cuts.
On the other hand, maybe the fat-cutting will make papers more responsive to readers and less apt to broadcast the unfiltered inside-the-bubble CW, in which case MoveOn can't win either way.
The Dems' campaign against Judge Samuel Alito's nomination to the Supreme Court is - as my sons might say - so over. The Sunday morning tv talk shows either beat on the Dems for making such a bad showing (as did the ever more liberal Chris Matthews) or simply ignored the whole thing (as did Meet the Press). Perhaps the best evidence of the unstoppable nature of the Alito momentum is that even MoveOn.org is demoting their anti-Alito campaign to the bottom of the page.
One of the new MoveOn headline stories is hilarious. Instead of defending the insane liberal bias of the media, MoveOn is now bashing the media for laying off reporters. MoveOn knows who its friends only reliable pals are, and - to its credit - will fight for them. Even as a broken clock is correct twice a day, there had to be a case in which MoveOn.org would perform honorably, even if only to its own lights.
John, Hear! Hear!
As far as the Cromwell reference goes, I just know there's a joke about tyrants with good intentions in there somewhere.
The current contest for GOP leader in the House of Representatives is the first time in the history of the Republican Party that party members, that is, all of us in the blogosphere, can directly influence the decision.
For the next three weeks, until the secret ballot vote on February 2, the back benchers will be eyes and ears open to e-mail and catcalling from us in the pachyderm herd. Establishment candidate Roy Blunt of Missouri -- who speaks in favor of grotesque earmarks and does not condemn DeLay for his lunatic 527 abuses -- has fallen short of pledged votes to lock it up for the first ballot. Challenger John Boehner of Ohio is a sincere and well-prepared reformer of the rotten practices that led to the present crisis. Boehner opposes earmarks and the egregious forms of lobbyist bribery such as travel tickets and accommodations, such as back-scratching, money-laundering 527s. And now there is John Shadegg of Arizona, who represents the Directory-fiery Republican Study Committee, which fancies itself the Spirit of '94, the clean it all up tyros, Cromwell rides again.
I am a fan of brooms.
Interesting that former President Bill Clinton eulogized former presidential candidate Eugene McCarthy earlier this week.
According to several people who used to see McCarthy regularly at The Palm restaurant in downtown Washington, D.C., McCarthy was no fan of Clinton as the years passed through his administration. By 2000, McCarthy was as disgusted by his party's leader as most other right-minded folk, and didn't hide it. To the end, he was a man who put integrity ahead of just about anything else.
John, Of course a campaign is necessary. These guys have to get their message out to the caucus and to the party. But changes still can and will come along in the next couple weeks of jockeying. The proclaimed vote totals ought to be taken for what they are: rough estimates by self-promoters. That's their job. But some pundits are occupied with these slight shifts as if it were election night and returns were pouring in from across the country. This race is "inside baseball" for now.
But Dave, if nothing matters until the secret ballot vote, then why have a campaign at all?
Frontrunners never say "the only poll that matters is the one on election day," or any variation thereof. Plainly, Boehner's losing.
UPDATE: Catching up, I now see that Boehner started with this talking point yesterday in response to a release claiming that Blunt has the race wrapped up, with 117+ commitments. Boehner's other objection to the Blunt announcement is stronger: If Blunt has it won, why not step down from the whip post? Shadegg, meanwhile, claimed yesterday that "We already have defections from the Blunt list and we expect more."