Archive for February 19th, 2007

Good News/Bad News

The esteemed Mr. Krugman hones in on what makes John Edwards a superior candidate to Hillary Clinton… and also a weaker one:

For the last six years we have been ruled by men who are pathologically incapable of owning up to mistakes. And this pathology has had real, disastrous consequences. The situation in Iraq might not be quite so dire — and we might even have succeeded in stabilizing Afghanistan — if Mr. Bush or Vice President Dick Cheney had been willing to admit early on that things weren’t going well or that their handpicked appointees weren’t the right people for the job.

The experience of Bush-style governance, together with revulsion at the way Karl Rove turned refusal to admit error into a political principle, is the main reason those now-famous three words from Mr. Edwards — “I was wrong” — matter so much to the Democratic base.

The base is remarkably forgiving toward Democrats who supported the war. But the base and, I believe, the country want someone in the White House who doesn’t sound like another George Bush. That is, they want someone who doesn’t suffer from an infallibility complex, who can admit mistakes and learn from them.

This is all true and good, but Edwards’ willingness to admit error may extend too far, as evidenced by his I-won’t-fire-them-but-that-bothered-me-too response to Bill Donohue and Michelle Malkin’s attacks on his new blogger staffers, and his unwillingness to speak up and defend them when the attacks devolved into a campaign of threatening hate mail against Amanda and Melissa.

In other words, Hillary won’t admit she was wrong when the Democratic base demands it, and Edwards won’t admit he was right when the Republican base demands it. In a general campaign, this translates into Hillary being unable to effectively campaign against the war, just like Edwards’ running mate in 2004; or into Edwards not countering Republican smears effectively or at all.

There was one other interesting tidbit in Krugman’s column:

Although [Hillary]’s smart and sensible, she’s very much the candidate of the Beltway establishment — an establishment that has yet to come to terms with its own failure of nerve and judgment over Iraq.

This is also true, but I wanted to remark on the irony of Hillary so willingly embracing the conventional wisdom of a pundit class that did everything it could to sabotage her husband’s presidency. I don’t think she needs any Vaffanculo lessons from Scalia, but she really needs to work on her aim.

February 19th, 2007 at 11:18pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Clinton,Democrats,Iraq,Politics,War

Headline Of The Day

Op-Ed in today’s NYT:

Don’t Fall for Hot Pink Camels

I think we can all agree that this is very sound advice.

2 comments February 19th, 2007 at 02:12pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Great Headlines

It’s A George W. Thing…

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Yes, they are exactly the same…

President Bush honored the 275th birthday of the nation’s first president on Monday, likening George Washington’s long struggle that gave birth to a nation to the war on global terrorism.

“Today, we’re fighting a new war to defend our liberty and our people and our way of life,” said Bush, standing in front of Washington’s home and above a mostly frozen Potomac River.

“And as we work to advance the cause of freedom around the world, we remember that the father of our country believed that the freedoms we secured in our revolution were not meant for Americans alone.”

Apparently they’re meant for everyone but Americans.

“I feel right at home here. After all, this is the home of the first George W. I thank President Washington for welcoming us today. He doesn’t look a day over 275 years old,” Bush said to laughter.

Please just shoot me. Right about now, Washington’s ghost is thinking that maybe death isn’t so bad after all.

“On the field of battle, Washington’s forces were facing a mighty empire, and the odds against them were overwhelming. The ragged Continental Army lost more battles than it won, suffered waves of desertions, and stood on the brink of disaster many times. Yet George Washington’s calm hand and determination kept the cause of independence and the principles of our Declaration alive,” Bush said on a clear but frigid day, speaking to several hundred people.

Okay, so if we’re comparing the American Revolution to Iraq or the War On Terror… tell me again which side is supposed to be us?

“In the end, General Washington understood that the Revolutionary War was a test of wills, and his will was unbreakable,” said Bush. “After winning the war, Washington did what victorious leaders rarely did at the time. He voluntarily gave up power.”

Um, does this make anyone else uneasy?

“Over the centuries, America has succeeded because we have always tried to maintain the decency and the honor of our first president,” Bush said.

…Until now.

So, just let me make sure that I have this straight: Dubya compared our Endless Campaign To Blow Up Everyone We Don’t Like War On Terror to the American Revolution – you know, the one where a weak, fledgling nation successfully defeated a superpower that potentially could have destroyed it? And compared himself to George Washington – you know, the modest, humble, martially competent man who did not crave unlimited personal power?

Riiiiight.

6 comments February 19th, 2007 at 01:53pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Bush,Iraq,Politics,Wankers,War

Monday Media Blogging – Amateur Hour

This week’s Monday Media Blogging is a celebration of enthusiasm over budget.


This one is dedicated to the shadowy and mysterious Codename V.


This one is probably old news to all the Ellen DeGeneres fans out there.

And for those of you who are fans of Journey’s Separate Ways video, there is this TOTALLY AWESOME weedwhacker tribute:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wO8qPH3MpxM

2 comments February 19th, 2007 at 11:40am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Monday Media Blogging

Today In Creepiness

This sounds like a CSI episode, only less believable:

A complaint about a burst water pipe led to a macabre discovery on Long Island: the mummified body of a blind man sitting in front of his TV set, which was still on.

But perhaps more horrifying than the sight of Vincenzo Ricardo’s dusty remains is the fact that he died more than a year ago and no one noticed.

The 70-year-old widower had not been seen since December 2005, and most of his Hampton Bays neighbors assumed his diabetes had put him in the hospital.

But when Southampton Town police showed up to inspect the plumbing on Thursday, they found the corpse – hair and features preserved by dry conditions inside the home – in front of a TV.

(…)

Long Island Power Authority spokesman Burt Cunningham could not say exactly how Ricardo’s electric service continued so long after his death.

But some customers have their bills deducted directly from their bank accounts, and legal procedures to shut off a delinquent customer’s service can often take a year.

The elderly man lived in a two-story, cedar-shingled house in an area of scrub pine and white oaks a mile from the shore of Shinnecock Bay. A derelict Pontiac was abandoned alongside the home.

(…)

The Suffolk County medical examiner said Ricardo appeared to have died of natural causes.

Jeez. The fact that the TV was still on after a year is what puts this one over the top for me.

1 comment February 19th, 2007 at 01:33am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Weirdness


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