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Archive for November, 2006

Bush-Maliki Bottom Line: “Accelerating”

Thursday, November 30th, 2006

It’s midnight and I’m watching the Bush-Maliki press conference live from Amman on CNN. The bottom line in the words of Bush: “We’re gonna stay in Iraq until the job is done, as long as the Iraqi government wants us there.” It’s the same-old-same-old. We stand down when the Iraqis stand up. Now the new […]

Pat-a-cake pat-a-cake Baker’s Man

Wednesday, November 29th, 2006

Nice to hear that Jim Baker’s Iraq Study Group has advanced the public release of its miracle cures for the war in Iraq. The great unveiling is set for next Wednesday. That’s assuming there’s still an Iraqi government in power six days from now. With each passing day, as Todd Gitlin notes, Iraq looks more […]

Bankrolling Failure — Outplaying the Democrats

Tuesday, November 28th, 2006

The readers know I’m partial to poker metaphors, so indulge me one more time. As of three weeks ago, the Democrats were dealt the winning hand, taking a new congressional majority that clearly repudiated the Bush war policy. Instead of immediately playing the hand aggressively, instead of grabbing the lead, betting out and raising the […]

While We’re At It

Monday, November 27th, 2006

So the mullahs at NBC News have issued a fatwah. Henceforth, the war in Iraq will now officially be called a “civil war.” I can only imagine the oh-so-earnest closed-door meetings of the shirt-sleeved mucky-mucks. Having been stumped by the question of how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, in their […]

Holy Covenants!

Monday, November 27th, 2006

I do my best to refrain from commenting on such trivial “news,” but I can’t hide my amazement at this story coming out of Colorado. A couple of well-meaning folks hung a peace-symbol shaped Xmas wreath out on the wall of their home and now their busybody (and wooden-headed) neighborhood association wants to fine them […]

The Diem Precedent

Sunday, November 26th, 2006

Reading the advance coverage of President Bush’s upcoming “summit meeting” with Iraqi Prime Minister al-Maliki to discuss growing impatience with his government, I had to chuckle. How fortunate al-Mailiki is that Bush has such a loose grasp on the history of Vietnam. Bush probably doesn’t know the late Mr. Ngo Dinh Diem from a plate […]

Thanksgiving

Thursday, November 23rd, 2006

I’m going to be taking the next few days off to spend some quality time with loved ones. Happy Thanksgiving. We have much to be grateful for. Being able to eat, let alone feast, is a privilege in this world: 852 million people across the world are hungry, up from 842 million a year ago. […]

Andrea’s Blog

Wednesday, November 22nd, 2006

I’ve written about my pal, Las Vegas dancer/organizer Andrea Hackett, both in The Nation and in my book about Sin City. Now Andrea’s got a blog. I expect y’all to bookmark it, check in and stir it up a bit. Good going, Andrea.

The Draft: I’m For It.

Wednesday, November 22nd, 2006

Charlie Rangel’s proposal to bring back the draft is getting the cold shoulder as expected. No one on Capitol Hill is taking it seriously. Given the jellyfish soul of both parties at this point in our history, probably nothing less than a nuclear attack on Washington D.C. would prompt either side to endorse anything that […]

And the Border?

Monday, November 20th, 2006

One of the items not prominently mentioned in the legislative agenda of the incoming Democratic majority is stalled immigration reform. It was easy enough for Democrats to be in favor of comprehensive reform when they were in the minority and knew the measure wouldn’t pass the House. It could be quite another when they’re a majority […]

Henry and Harry

Sunday, November 19th, 2006

If we as a people have one reigning expert on non-democracy it has to be Dr. Kissinger. Now Henry speaks. And our nation turns its lonely eyes to him! Kissinger says that not only the war in Iraq is no longer winnable, but now he adds that we should have plain old installed a dictator […]

Thin Reid

Friday, November 17th, 2006

I’ve been chided by some of my readers for prematurely criticizing the Democrats, for giving them a bad time barely ten days after the mid-terms. Poooor babies, as my hero, Triumph the Insult Comic Dog would say. As I compile my list of Global Victims, I will make sure to promote the new House and […]

Nancy Whiffs

Thursday, November 16th, 2006

Today’s lopsided vote for Steny Hoyer over Jack Murtha for House Majority Leader has got to make you wonder how smart — or not– Speaker-to-be Nancy Pelosi might really be. She and Murtha got routed. And all that was really accomplished was a flurry of media reports emphasizing how corrupt some of the new Democratic […]

‘Total Crap’ [Updated]

Wednesday, November 15th, 2006

Put out a title like Total Crap, mix it in with events in Washington D.C., and all of a sudden you’ve got a brimming bucketful of slop to deal with. Let’s start with the direct quote. “Total crap” is what candidate for Majority Leader Rep. John Murtha was reported to have said behind closed doors […]

The Murtha Myth

Tuesday, November 14th, 2006

The new majority Democrats haven’t even taken their seats in Congress and way too many liberals are volunteering to dive literally to the bottom of the tank for them. Earlier this year we had patrician Ned Lamont as hero of the pwogs. That was understandable given his initially quixotic challenge to the unctuous Holy Joe […]

Phased Rephrasement

Tuesday, November 14th, 2006

This is what I meant by knocking the Democrats on the gobbly-gook language about “phased redeployment.” The strength, conviction and clarity of leadership always trumps its ideological nuance. Effective leaders define direction rather than meekly trying to suss out the consensus of its constituencies.

Standing Up The Kidnappers

Tuesday, November 14th, 2006

Gen. John Abizaid certainly got his answer quick enough. Barely 24 hrs after he met with Iraqi Prime Minister al-Maliki and asked him and his Baghdad government to curb freelance Shia militias, this happened. Two dozen police cars and military vehicles drove up to offices of the Ministry of Education and armed men in government […]

Giuliani Time?

Monday, November 13th, 2006

I don’t think so. Rudy has filed papers to set up a presidential exploratory committee. And he’s probably capable of providing a formidable challenge to Hillary Clinton in ’08. He’s only got one problem bettwen here and the nomination: The Republican Party. Yes, sometimes conventional wisdom is actually right. He’s pro-gay, he’s pro-choice and he […]

Washington Daze

Sunday, November 12th, 2006

I’ve spent the last few days in Washington DC and blog this to you from a  class D bar in the pleistocene-era Dulles airport — a true national embarrassment (more on that later). Saturday was spent on the National Mall, observing the huge crowd at the Vietnam War memorial. Lots of somber, sad faces. Lots […]

Sorting Tea Leaves

Thursday, November 9th, 2006

Greetings from The Watergate where I will be through the weekend… I have a very busy sked these days so will keep this short. Trying to extract the Big Lesson from Tuesday’s vote is now a mass sport.  With advancing age I’ve learned (the hard way) to generally avoid making such sweeping conclusions. I’m willing […]