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Archive for April, 2004

Modest Proposal: Should The Democrats Default?

Friday, April 30th, 2004

We certified Kerry-phobes no longer hold the monopoly on bemoaning the rather pathetic Presumptive Democratic Nominee. Even hacks like the WashPo’s Richard Cohen are starting to pile on. Anti-war “progressives,” meanwhile, like former Mass. State Rep Tom Gallagher are also still struggling to swallow the increasingly bitter Kerry candidacy. So, here’s a Modest Proposal. Why […]

Tribal Scamming…er Gaming

Wednesday, April 28th, 2004

My just-posted latest L.A. Weekly column takes on an aspect of the Indian gambling scam. One local tribal leader closely resembles the Chief who appeared on last season’s Sopranos– the guy who was 1/16th indigenous and had his “racial epiphany” after tribal gaming was legalized! There’s a serious point to this column. California Democrats are […]

Not Too Late: Anybody But Kerry

Tuesday, April 27th, 2004

This is already all over the Web, which ought to tell you something. But because Jim Ridgeway of the Village Voice is an old-time compadre of mine, I’m only too happy to go along with the pack and post his piece on Why John Kerry Must Go. I’m doubly compelled to do so after watching […]


Monday, April 26th, 2004

At least someone is thinking seriously about the course to take in Iraq, transcending the facile sloganeering of the Bushies and the muddled mumblings of John Kerry. Peter W. Galbraith has an essay in the current New York Review of Books that is marked by a rather breathtaking and cool-headed analytical balance as well as […]

Blazing Straddle

Monday, April 26th, 2004

Way, way back in the barely-remembered days of the Presidential Primaries — y’know, six or seven weeks ago””John Kerry was taunting GW Bush to Bring It On. Well, my friends, IT is here. And instead of standing firm and firing back, Kerry’s being steadily plinked like some flop-over duck in a shooting gallery. While the […]


Friday, April 23rd, 2004

I’ll be doing only light to non-existent posting this weekend as the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books will be eating up most of my time. If you’re in the So Cal area, I encourage you to come out to the UCLA campus and partake in one of the great cultural events that L.A. has […]

The P-Word

Wednesday, April 21st, 2004

Is it too early to discuss what is, with or without U.S. consent, a likely culmination of the war in Iraq: Partition? Aren’t the internal pressures such that Iraq is destined to spin off into three separate parts? An independent northern Kurdistan. A central Sunni hell. And a fundamentalist Shia nation in the south. Should […]

Getting Drafty

Tuesday, April 20th, 2004

Republican Senator Chuck Hagel floated renewal of a military draft in today’s Senate hearings on the war in Iraq: “Why shouldn’t we ask all of our citizens to bear some responsibility and pay some price?” Hagel said, arguing that restoring compulsory military service would force “our citizens to understand the intensity and depth of challenges […]

What Saudis?

Monday, April 19th, 2004

I’m no fan of Bob Woodward. But I was riveted by his interview with Mike Wallace last night on 60 Minutes. In Woodward’s version of the run-up to the Iraqi war, GW Bush comes off, frankly, as a putz. My Nation colleague David Corn has a nifty analysis of the Woodward disclosures. The disclosure that […]

Can Kerry Talk?

Saturday, April 17th, 2004

The Presumptive Democratic Nominee will have a television hour all to himself on tomorrow morning’s Meet The Press. I’ll be tuning in to see if Kerry can squeeze out one or two complete sentences of conversational speech, or will it be the usual wall-to-wall orating? Sunday morning’s newspapers are already advancing Kerry’s position on Iraq. […]

Bay Area Alert!

Friday, April 16th, 2004

If your’re anywhere near the Bay Area tonight, Friday, why don’t you come meet me at Cody’s Books on Telegraph Ave in Berkeley? At 7:30 p.m. I’ll be reading from and signing my just-published The Last Honest Place in America: Paradise and Perdition in the New Las Vegas. Come find out: the deeper meaning of […]

Fidel Stoned

Thursday, April 15th, 2004

The dottering 76 year old Comandante kinda looked that way last night as I watched the HBO premiere of Oliver Stone’s just-minted hour long vanity-doc “Looking for Fidel.” I was looking for the point of this filmed synopsis of 60 hours of interviews but came up with nada. Oliver seemed as confused as the aging […]

Lyndon Bush Johnson?

Wednesday, April 14th, 2004

The war in Iraq — and it continues to be a war”” is not Vietnam. But GW’s presser earlier this week sure brought back the good old days when a blustering LBJ and a sweating, squinting Dick Nixon would dissemble and dodge while struggling to explain the steadily sinking American enterprise in Indochina. Here’s a […]

Still Leaderless

Tuesday, April 13th, 2004

Wednesday afternoon I’ll be posting my latest full-length L.A. Weekly column on Bush’s press conference tonight. For the moment, I’ll say only this: I don’t think many Americans care to keep hearing the President say why we went into Iraq. He already galvanized a majority on that matter. They want to know now what he’s […]


Monday, April 12th, 2004

I was just about to write a Where’s Waldo-like posting, asking where the hell is the Presumptive Democratic Nominee at a time when Iraq was looking ever more like Lebanon and Bush was busy guiding lobbyists around his ranch? And then I stumbled onto John Kerry’s bloated and windy op-ed in Tuesday morning’s WashPo. I […]

Sex And Sistani

Sunday, April 11th, 2004

I’ve spent the last week posting some fairly grim news from Iraq and I hope we’ll keep the debate going that has started in the previous two postings. But time out to look on the brighter side”¦ at least for a few minutes. You know that Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Husaini Sistani? Our principal moderate […]

Get Out Of Iraq By Following Through?

Sunday, April 11th, 2004

Ok. Beyond the equally empty calls of either troops out now or don’t flinch and get tougher, my friend Micah Sifry, editor of the Iraq War Reader, has come up with an intriguing draft of a “way out” of the Iraqi swamp. Here’s an excerpt from his current blog posting: Could it be that the […]

The Brits: “The Lid Has Come Off”

Friday, April 9th, 2004

“Thousand Flee Iraq Fighting; Council Totters” is the ominous title of the front-pager by Tony Perry and Nick Riccardi that will lead Saturday morning’s L.A.Times. Only the Bush administration can now deny that a historic turning point is upon us in Iraq. At least Washington’s most steadfast allies, the Brits, are starting to face up […]

No White Hats In Iraq

Friday, April 9th, 2004

Possible good news just coming in: “a unilateral suspension of offensive operations” by U.S.-led coaliton forces in Fallujah while some sort of cease-fire is being attempted. Perhaps a step back from the abyss, and maybe just in time. Or maybe just a breather in coming prolonged bloodshed. A couple of days ago I mentioned the […]

“Name-Calling Low-Life”

Thursday, April 8th, 2004

No. That’s not my characterization of Condi. That’s what the former Mayor of San Diego and current right-wing Shout Radio host, Roger Hedgecock, calls me in a confrontation that airs tonight on Golden State PBS stations. More about that in a moment. Back to Condi. Well, I did my duty and got up at dawn […]