The Current Crisis

The Current Crisis

Up From Racism

By 5.1.14

WASHINGTON—There is something decidedly odd about the use of racially loaded terms in America today.

Black personalities use these terms on occasion, and no controversy whatsoever is attached to the event. Even when the terms are enunciated in public for all to see and to hear. When whites—often old and over the hill—use these terms and ideas—often behind closed doors—all hell breaks loose.

The latest occasion of this occurred when Donald Sterling, the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, a basketball team, was taped uttering racially divisive words and ignorant ideas to his obviously disgruntled lover. She handed over a tape of the conversation, apparently surreptitiously made, to an online scandal sheet TMZ and kaboom. Suddenly Sterling became one of the most notorious men in America and of course a modern American bigot. Of a sudden, the columnists and talking heads commenced a new round of chatter about how racism is still with us. After all, an eighty-year-old billionaire is spouting racist swill in the comfort of his own home.

Send to Kindle

The Current Crisis

The Press Never Calls

By 4.24.14

WASHINGTON — My telephone is not ringing off the hook. No intriguing or inquiring emails have arrived on my computer. Yet, on Friday, a document drop from the Clinton Library revealed that years ago, in the 1990s, I was at the very heart of the “vast right-wing conspiracy.” Now here we are almost a week later, and still no journalist, much less a historian, has called to ask me if I really was actively conspiring with the British press, select American newspapers, obscure right-wing political operators and, who knows, possibly foreign powers to create the gossamer of scandal over the Clinton White House. All this was reported in the documents.

It has always struck me as curious how news stories are reported in America or not reported. What standards must be met to land a story on the front page or even to decide that it is a story worth reporting at all.

Send to Kindle

The Current Crisis

Krauthammer Against the Tyrants

By 4.17.14

WASHINGTON—Last week a national treasure spoke. That would be Charles Krauthammer, syndicated columnist, television commentator, and all around public sage. He also is a chess player.

Krauthammer noted that two months ago a petition bearing the signatures of some 110,000 tyrants was sent to the Washington Post—from where did it come I would like to know—demanding that the Post discontinue publishing articles that deny global warming or—who knows—take even a skeptical view of global warming. Yet Krauthammer assures us that precisely a day later his column containing the exact heresy ran in the Post. So, apparently the Washington Post, unlike the Los Angeles Times, will remain unintimidated by the global warmist tyrants, at least for now.

Send to Kindle

The Current Crisis

Student Unrest in Springtime

By 4.9.14

Washington
Spring is in the air, and one senses that it is again time for the college students of the land to engage in protest. It all began in the late 1960s, and one of the legacies of that period is that the campuses are evacuated as soon as possible. By May the student body will be vamoosing. Administrators have discovered that that soft, gentle, spring-like weather breeds discontent among the students, drunken carousal, violence, and criminality. It is best to return the inmates to their parents.

Send to Kindle

The Current Crisis

Hot-Blooded Vlad

By 3.27.14

WASHINGTON—In August of 2008 at the Beijing Summer Olympics President George W. Bush had a talk with President Vladimir Putin. Georgia’s anti-Moscow president, Mikheil Saakashvili, had been uttering provocative sonorities about Russia, so Russian troops marched into Georgia much as they are doing today in Crimea. Mr. Bush reminded Mr. Putin that “I’ve been warning you Saakashvili is hot blooded.” To which Mr. Putin suavely responded, “I’m hot blooded too.” Mr. Bush’s rejoinder was “No, Vladimir. You’re cold blooded.” Well, whether the president of Russia is hot blooded or cold blooded or bloodless, his troops are in Crimea now, and Russia still has the same problem it had at the end of the Cold War. Its economy is not quite modern. In fact it is sickly. Its growth rate last year was 1.3 percent, hardly capable of sustaining a modern military.

Send to Kindle

The Current Crisis

A Very Jolly Election

By 3.20.14

WASHINGTON—The Republicans would nominate as their candidate for the recently contested House seat in Florida a candidate with the celebratory surname of Jolly. David Jolly to be exact. Needless to say David Jolly won. Perhaps his victory will establish a trend. According to the trend, the Republicans will be running candidates with surnames like Happy, or Joyous, or even Gay. Imagine a wave election—as political commentators are predicting 2014 to be—in which the Republicans run candidates with the aforementioned names: Happy, Joyous, Gay! Imagine a future House of Representatives where the dialogue might run: “Speaker Jolly, I should like to propose an amendment to your bill on noxious particulates in the atmosphere,” says the Hon. Happy. Responds the Hon. Jolly, “By all means do so, Mr. Happy.” It would be a new dawn for the Republic.

Send to Kindle

The Current Crisis

An Academic Fraud Exposed

By 3.13.14

WASHINGTON—From time to time, I put down my duties of writing about politics and other human follies and pick up a book, often a book of poetry, often by W. B. Yeats. The other night I read Yeats’ poem “The Fiddler of Dooney.” It is a little masterpiece, but then Yeats wrote so many masterpieces. It begins:

When I play my fiddle in Dooney,
Folk dance like a wave of the sea;
My cousin is priest in Kilvarnet,
My brother in Mocharabuiee.

And on it dances for a few more stanzas, delighting the eye and the ear and the mind. Yeats obviously chose each word with the utmost care and gave his words a structure that was finely disciplined — good show W. B.!

Send to Kindle

The Current Crisis

Ukraine and the Return of the KGB

By 3.6.14

 WASHINGTON—Regarding our community activist’s present imbroglio with President Vladimir Putin of Russia, I stand with Donald Trump who said recently: “The thing I have the most concern about is that he’s being so lambasted for not being respected, and for being a joke, that he’ll do something really stupid to show that he’s a man.” We are now about where we were with Jimmy Carter after he lectured his fellow citizens about their so-called “inordinate fear of Communism” even as the Soviet Union was spreading its tentacles over the Third World. His sudden turn-around—caused by Soviet aggression in Afghanistan—from a position of sweet reason to the pose of a hawk alarmed me and doubtless alarmed the Russians. Jimmy began the military build-up that a more gifted statesman, President Ronald Reagan, consummated in pursuit of a peaceful ending of the Cold War. Yet while Jimmy resided in the White House, I was uneasy with the sudden anti-Communism of this moralistic twerp. Most probably Donald was too. Now we have to worry about the intolerable greenhorn Barack Obama. What will he do next?

Send to Kindle

The Current Crisis

New Benghazi Witnesses

By 2.27.14

WASHINGTON — National Security Advisor Susan Rice appeared on NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday and said that when she had appeared on several news outlets back in September 2012 to state that the attack on an American diplomatic installation in Benghazi was a “spontaneous reaction” to an American-made film that appeared on YouTube she had used “the best information we [the White House] had at the time.” Senator John McCain responded to her statement Sunday that it left him “almost speechless.”

The Arizona Republican said on CBS’s Face the Nation that “I’m almost speechless, because it’s patently obvious, first of all, that Susan Rice had no reason to be on the program. She had no involvement in it [Benghazi].” At the time she was U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.  “Second of all, she read talking points that we are now beginning to believe came from the White House, which were absolutely false,” continued Senator McCain.  “We now know that the CIA station chief on the ground sent a message immediately saying, ‘Not-slash-not spontaneous demonstrations,’ and of course the information was totally misleading, totally false.”

Send to Kindle

The Current Crisis

My Response to Mitt Romney

By 2.20.14

WASHINGTON —First Mitt Romney loses a presidential election that he was predicted to win in a walk. Then he appears some 15 months later on Sunday’s “Meet the Press” to lecture the nation on how Republicans might lose the presidential election once again. “I don’t think Bill Clinton is as relevant as Hillary Clinton if Hillary Clinton decides to run for president in 2016,” Mr. Romney opined. Perhaps he forgot that Bill was elected president 21 years ago promising that a vote for him would mean acquiring two presidents “for the price of one.” Mr. Romney, Hillary is actually pretty tightly entangled with Bill, now and forever. May I suggest that you read up on their peculiar relationship? They are even closer than Bonnie and Clyde.

Send to Kindle

Pages