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Self-Made, Moderate, Edwards


I get press releases like this all day long. I just found this one a bit amusing:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, Dec. 28, 2006



John Edwards’ role as the leading moderate among Democrats who are expected to run for president gives him an advantage with voters, says a Duke University political scientist who specializes in African-American and Southern politics.

“As it stands now, he appears to be the candidate who is positioned more at the center of the party, and I think that’s where most of the base is, where the majority of the country is,” says Kerry L. Haynie, associate chair of the political science department. “He’s well-positioned. Can he take advantage of the position? That’s the question.”

Haynie also says the former vice-presidential candidate’s decision to announce “a grass-roots, ground-up campaign” in the Ninth Ward of New Orleans is an effective strategy.

“I think it’s very effective, and I think it reflects who he really is. He’s from humble beginnings, a working class background,” Haynie says. Edwards, who became a multimillionaire trial lawyer, is the son of a textile mill worker.

“His wealth is self-made, and exemplifies the American dream of becoming successful through hard work. We don’t mind wealth if it’s made the old-fashioned way — if you earn it.”

Me: Yes, Americans just love those self-made trial lawyers. As to why Edwards is a moderate, I have no idea.

Update: From a reader:


I think that press release is laughable. Edwards is a flaming liberal. I can’t think of one position he has staked out that is even close to being moderate. Someone needs to tell the man that you don’t get labeled moderate just by saying you are and by being from the south. You actually have to earn it—have a few battle scars to prove it.

Ask Joe Lieberman.


I Support NRO’s Advertisers


We took the littlest Goldberg to see Charlotte’s Web yesterday. Good stuff. Though my longstanding problem remains: Everyone’s interested in the pig, not the spider. It’s a bit like my beef with King Kong. Everyone thinks the big news is the giant monkey. No one thinks it’s a big deal they found dinosaurs, giant snakes etc. They find a spider that can spell, and all that really matters is that the spider really likes the pig. 

Still, good family fun. John Cleese is perfect and Steve Buscemi is the perfect rat-voice for Templeton.  

Web Briefing: December 21, 2014

50 Things We Know This Year (we didn’t know last year)


Good stuff. Here’s the first 10:

1. U.S. life expectancy in 2005 inched up to a record high of 77.9 years.

2. The part of the brain that regulates reasoning, impulse control and judgment is still under construction during puberty and doesn’t shift into autopilot until about age 25.

3. Blue light fends off drowsiness in the middle of the night, which could be useful to people who work at night.

4. The 8-foot-long tooth emerging from the head of the narwhal whale is actually a type of sensor that detects changes in water temperature, pressure and particle gradients.

5. U.S. Protestant “megachurches” – defined as having a weekly attendance of at least 2,000 – doubled in five years to more than 1,200 and are among the nation’s fastest-growing faith groups.

6. Cheese consumption in the United States is expected to grow by 50 percent between now and 2013.

7. At 68.1 percent, the United States ranks eighth among countries that have access to and use the Internet. The largest percentage of online use was in Malta, where 78.1 percent access the Web.

8. The U.S. government has paid about $1.5 billion in benefits to thousands of sick nuclear-weapons workers since 2001.

9. Scientists have discovered that certain brain chemicals in our tears are natural pain relievers.

10. FBI chief J. Edgar Hoover wrote a drooling fan letter to Lucille Ball in 1955 to tell her how much he enjoyed an episode of “I Love Lucy.” “In all the years I have traveled on trains,” he noted, “I have often wondered why someone did not pull the emergency brake, but I have never been aboard a train where it was done. The humor in your program last Monday, I think, exceeded any of your previous programs and they have been really good in themselves.”


Parents Don’t Matter, Cont’d


This Derb-bait seems more up his alley since it’s all sciency and stuff:

Your dad is a man whose babies you do not want to bear. It is gross, criminal in many countries, and would be genetically ruinous for your consanguineous offspring.

What’s more, this ancient evolutionary no-no seems to have startling modern day implications for female maturation. A study of 2,000 US college girls published in the American Journal of Human Biology in July 2006 shows that daughters who grow up without their fathers tend to have their first period earlier than those who blossom under their dad’s wing. Robert Matchock, who led the retrospective survey at Pennsylvania State University Altoona, believes there is a mechanism at play here that helps prevent inbreeding.

The psychologist saw an intriguing connection between his results and previous research on human pheromones – odors used in animal communication, often to attract mates. “Biologically related males send out inhibitory pheromone signals, whilst unrelated men release stimulatory ones,” says Matchock. In other words, daddy chemically says: Don’t ripen too fast, bunny; whilst strangers exude: Bring it on!

Can John Edwards Blame bush?


Stolen police vehicle reported

The New Orleans Police Department is asking for the public’s assistance in locating one of its 2007 Ford F-350 Pick-up Trucks, recently reported stolen. The truck bears public license plate number PP182473 and also V.I.N. 1FTWW33P57EA68326.

The truck is white in color, unmarked / without police marking, but does have strobe lights hidden in the headlights and taillights, and also has a thin straight line strobe mounted over the rear-view mirror.

The truck, commonly referred to as a “Dually”, should have a broken window on the passenger side. The truck should also bear noticeable damage to the front and top side of the vehicle, indicating that the vehicle was driven through the chain linked security fence.

Anyone with information that can help locate this vehicle should contact the New Orleans Police Department at 821-2222.

Unproductive Video


Normally, I’d just post a link to the video, but I just love the irony that this is from my Productivity Guy:


It’s been a while since anyone posted a truly awful video at the Corner, and if you’d like to remedy this situation I’ve got just the video. It’s about two-thirds down at the link below, under the post “I Want to Hold Your Hand Over My Eyes” (I don’t know how to isolate the post itself, but you’re more tech savvy than me so I’m sure it can be done)

Mere words can’t describe the awfulness on display. It really has to be seen to be believed, as I believe Corner viewers from around the world would agree (that is, if they were able to see it). This is maybe the only video clip in the world that would be improved if it added William Shatner’s version of “Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds.”

Again, here’s the video in question.

Re: Specter and Ahmadinejad


Give Specter credit, though.  There’s not even a Four Seasons for him to stay in, in Tehran.  Nor is there a U.S. embassy whose staff he can task to arrange squash games for him.  One of these days, some U.S. Embassy is going to leak or an enterprising journalist is going to FOIA a Specter visit cable so taxpayers can see his, um, unique requirements.

it’s been nice knowing you all?


Gideon’s Blog predicts my demise in 2007: “I predict that Senator Sam Brownback will endorse John McCain for President, causing K-Lo’s head to explode.”

Re: Suggested Edwards Slogans


I once ran for student office with the slogan, “Vote for me!  It’s about time someone did.”

Mind you, a friend of diminished standing and boasting a reputation for hard tactics once campaigned under the slogan, “Nasty, brutish and short.”  He won.

Vampire State


New York State has the worst, most corrupt political establishment in the Union, and George “He’s running for WHAT?” Pataki is the worst of the lot.  Here is Fred Dicker to tell you why.

His much-acclaimed use of public money to buy or restrict development on 1 million acres of rural land turned the historic rationale for conservationism on its head.

Pataki acted not to forestall the damaging effects of industrial expansion and population growth but to do just the opposite, to make sure there would be no industrial expansion or population growth that could encroach on the enclaves of the super-wealthy whose company he kept.

Pataki helped turn much of upstate’s rural population into a new form of peonage – servants to the Manhattan and Westchester leisure classes – to a degree even the smug Dutch Patroons would never have imagined.

Polar Bears


More here. My conclusion:

One might suspect, given the ESA’s success in trumping the Constitution in recent years, that certain people are trying to use the Endangered Species Act to force regulation of greenhouse gases. The fact that polar bears are not really affected by global warming doesn’t seem to affect this logic.

Or am I being overly cynical in this holiday season?

be a soldier’s angel


As you consider end-of-year donations, consider a Godsend like Soldiers’ Angels .

Arafat V. Americans


Interesting. Captain Ed has the details.

Re: Specter and Ahmadinejad


Maybe Arlen can annoy Ahmadinejad to death.



Jonah, that is very different indeed. And of course the answer to Ford’s question — “Where does [Bush] get his advice?” – is clear: From Tony Blair and Colin Powell and others who care deeply about the “international community.”

Under their interpretation of international law the only possible justification for toppling Saddam Hussein was that he was in violation of UN Security Council resolutions demanding he disclose the whereabouts of his WMDs and destroy them in a manner verifiable to UN weapons inspectors.

And of course the one thing everyone from John Kerry to Jacques Chirac agreed upon was that Saddam continued to maintain WMD stockpiles.

(On second thought: “from John Kerry to Jacques Chirac” is not such a long a throw.)

Arlen Specter wants to meet Ahmadinejad


Jindal for Gov?


Sounds that way.


Text criticizes an item I posted from an unnamed Marine describing the on-the-ground reality in Iraq as he sees it.

The criticism strikes me as correct on one point and incorrect on another.

Where it’s correct: It turns out the Marine’s letter is not new: It had been widely circulated last year. I didn’t know that. I received a copy from a retired U.S. ambassador who served many years in the Middle East. He, like me, is a member of the “expert working group” of the Baker/Hamilton Commission and he shared it with all members of the group. (We’re on a list-serve where we circulate what we view as significant articles and argue over them). I assumed this letter was from a source with whom he was personally familiar. Apparently, that was not true. My apologies on that score.

Where it’s incorrect: In the letter, the Marine says that “morale among our guys is very high,” that he believes they “are winning decisively,” and that they are distressed over the “what they see in the American press.” says “that sentiment seems a bit out of place, given that the president himself admitted last week the United States isn’t winning the war.”

To which I’d reply: Huh? The morale of the Marines, their perspective on media coverage, and their view of whether they are making progress may rise and fall with the President’s evaluation of the situation – or it may not.

Re: Only A Southerner


While I think Edwards should be taken more seriously than JPod does — if only because so many Democrats and pundits take him seriously — let’s not forget that Edwards didn’t help Kerry in the South at all. If memory serves, Edwards didn’t even boost Kerry’s share in Edwards’ home state of North Carolina by even a single percentage point over Gore’s in 2000. We were told when Kerry picked Edwards that the move would put all of the South in play. That was obvious nonsense. But, if he’s the guy who can win in the South, shouldn’t he have helped the ticket in his own state just an eensy-weensy bit?


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