The Spectacle Blog

Nothing In The Middle?

By on 9.11.06 | 2:57PM

Jonathan Rauch says that:

Now is therefore as good a time as any to jump to a conclusion: the question history will ask is whether Bush's presidency was as bad as Richard Nixon's or only as bad as Jimmy Carter's.


For the disenchanted--again, including me--the relevant points of reference now are not Churchill or Truman but Nixon and Carter.

Is there no middle ground between Truman and Carter? Maybe an Eisenhower or Woodrow Wilson?

Rauch says there are four things that will lead to Bush being compared to Carter and Nixon: the fiscal mess, the Iraq mess, international opprobrium (i.e., the international community doesn't like us), and the extralegal terrorism war (i.e., wiretapping).

I'll largely concede the fiscal mess, although Bush might still get some relief on that one if the deficit keeps heading in the direction it currently is.

Time to Defend Tomlinson

By on 9.11.06 | 2:26PM

For all the talk today about outreach to the Muslim community and communicaions, there is one man who has played a critical role in doing it the "right" way. Kenneth Y. Tomlinson.

We have a number of friends who formerly worked with Tomlinson at the Voice of America and at Reader's Digest, before it went leftish and became irrelevant. Everyone sings Tomlinson's praises for his leadership and vision.

Now Democrats on Capitol Hill are using the tried and true smear tactic of a leaked "investigation" into Tomlinson's management of the office that oversees all foreign broadcasts, including the successful Arab-language programming, to block his re-nomination to the board. This op-ed in yesterday's Washington Times lays out the non-case pretty well.

Conservatives should be paying attention to this fight. They should do what they can to defend Tomlinson and not let another left-wing smear undercut a true giant in the conservative movement.

Romney’s 9/11 Statement

By on 9.11.06 | 12:07PM

I'd like to talk about doors for just a minute. When I was little, my boxer dog's bark meant that Dad was coming through the back door. He was finally home, and the fun could begin. When I became a married man, walking through the kitchen door was the happiest moment in my day. Everything that had been occupying my concerns was suddenly unimportant. When my boys were growing up, my passage through the back door meant I'd soon be tackled, rolled to the floor, and engaged in a tickling contest. Now the boys have grown, married and have children of their own. When Christmas vacation approaches, they make their way home. No matter the busyness of the moment or the lateness of the hour, Ann and my ears are perked. When the door opens, celebration begins.

‘We Cannot Let Down Our Guard’

By on 9.11.06 | 11:16AM

Rudy Giuliani writing in today's USA Today:

There is a reason thousands of rescue personnel rushed into enormous danger to save men and women who were strangers to them. The reason was respect for the value of human life. It can also be described as love -- the kind of love expressed in a biblical phrase, "Man has no greater love than to lay down his life for his friend." This respect for human life and love for others, including strangers, form the core of Western civilization. It is the driving force that helped us create freedom.

 What I learned from Sept. 11, 2001/>, is that free people have much greater strength than they realize. Ultimately, free people prevail over oppression.

As they say, read the whole thing.

Patriot Day, 2006

By on 9.11.06 | 11:04AM

From The White House:

A Proclamation by the President of the United States of America

On the fifth anniversary of the attacks of September 11, 2001, we recall the fire and horror at the twin towers of the WorldTradeCenter, the Pentagon, and a Pennsylvania field. America will always remember the thousands of innocent lives taken by the enemies of freedom that morning.

“The Path to 911”

By on 9.11.06 | 10:48AM

Discuss as we may which scenes were altered and which were cut, this film deserves high praise for its unflinching portrayal of our evil enemies, as bad a collection of bad guys as ever infested a big screen, a small screen -- or the real world.

Mannings v. Path to 9-11

By on 9.11.06 | 10:00AM

I knew yesterday morning that the fuss over ABC's 9-11 film was going to end up being overblown. As I checked out with emergency baby supplies at Target, the elderly female cashier smiled and asked me if I'd be "watching the Mannings tonight?"

Based on the ratings, it looks like the Mannings were the overwhelming choice of viewers. I was one of them. For what it's worth, Peyton is substantially better than little brother Eli at this point, but the Giants have a heckuva running game. It's hard to believe they lost given the way they were imposing their will on the ground.

Justifable But Not Wise

By on 9.11.06 | 9:14AM

Dershowitz on Khatami. The Crimson defends not only the decision to invite Khatami, but also Fidel Castro in 1959. And that bit about not backing down from the execution of gays rankled the Crimson reporter more than most from the mainstream media outlets, so kudos to her for not letting it go without note. For the record, I'm with Dershowitz here.