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Denver Lyrics


Some of us have been corrected in referring to Dan Rather using lyrics from the John Denver song “Take Me Home, Country Roads.” It is correct to call them “John Denver song lyrics,” since it’s his hit, but drop the “song” and you’re wrong. It was written by Bill Danoff, better known by the old people as one-fourth of the Starland Vocal Band, whose one hit was “Afternoon Delight,” a song Dan Rather has not yet found occasion to read on the air, not even during the release of the Starr report.

Athletically Correct


One of the rules of politics ought to be not to use ignorant sports analogies. In the New York Times, the odious California Democratic Party hack Bob Mulholland boasts from the Gray Davis camp, “We are at the beginning of spring training, and we already have our team, and we know what the issues will be…While the Republicans are starting spring training, and they don’t have a quarterback.”

“Spring training” is a baseball term, not a football term, and it’s never held in July. “Training camp” is the term the Democrat is fumbling for. To demonstrate which party’s operatives have a better grasp of being athletically correct, GOP spokesman Rob Stutzman comes back with the analogy, no doubt responding to the reporter’s suggestions, and nails the baseball analogy: “They may be in spring training, but there are going to be all kind of clubhouse brawls.”


One Last Thing Re Jonah and Yaf


Right after I was told about the VD comment, it was explained to me why the schedule was about 25 minutes behind: Someone had asked Jonah to talk about conservatives and LIBERTOIDS! (A plant?)

Web Briefing: July 22, 2014

Ap Silliness


Conservatives may want to put aside the very worthy procedural debates over recall or no recall to notice that the media will be carrying Gray Davis’s water yet again. One factor in the rapid recall signing process was a tripling of the car tax by Davis. But AP seems to think a state official called “the deficit” signs tax increases into law:

“The budget deficit has already caused the state’s car tax to triple, and Davis’ approval rating to sink into the low 20s in many polls.”


Bacon & Erdos Numbers


Several readers note that Stephen Hawking has been in movies & therefore
presumably has a finite Bacon number, as well as almost certainly an Erdös
number. Also this: “Derb– Tim Hsu and David Grabiner have observed that
since Dan Kleitman actually appears (briefly) in and is a mathematical
consultant for the movie Good Will Hunting, Bacon has a combined Erdös/Bacon
number of 3, since Kleitman has Bacon number 2 (via Minnie Driver, who was
in Sleepers with Kevin Bacon) and Erdös number 1. Bruce Reznick is in a
similar position, with an Erdös number of 1 and a Bacon number (by virture
of being an extra in Pretty Maids All in a Row with Roddy McDowall) of 2. In
fact, Paul Erdös himself has an official Bacon number of 4, by virtue of the
N is a Number (a documentary about him), and lots of other mathematicians
have finite Bacon number through this film.”

Speaking of Texas


I was on a panel with Jim Graham of Texas Right to Life. What a guy! He’s a hugely untapped resource, in my opinion. The Anthony Robbins of the conservative movement, if you ask me. A graduate of the Young America’s Foundation, he funds teens to go to the summer conference every year to go through the boot camp. (In telling students why he does what he does, I am certain he could have inspired the most apathetic kid on campus.) He’s been a pro-life activist for ten years and seems every bit as dedicated–although perhaps even moreso–than the day he started. So many of the folks you meet get cyncial, jaded, depressed. He’s a fighter, along with his wife, Elizabeth, and is glad to do it all because he has his ultimate, eternal goal in mind all the while. People are doing great things in the states all the time who just do not get the credit they deserve. Thank God for them.

I’m So Disappointed


that I did not get to break the VD news to you. As soon as I walked into the George Washington University ballroom where the Young America’s Foundation confab was happening, I was told about Jonah’s explanation for Rich’s absence. It sounded like it was once of the most memorable lines of the week. If it makes them buy the book, Jonah, Rich might owe you royalties.

Viva Brooks


A thousand congratulations to David. With former NRODT-ite Paul Gigot at the Journal, and former NRODT-ite David at the Times, all we need to give Eric Alterman nightmares is a minion at the Washington Post. Volunteers?



I wish to ditto Peter Robinson’s objections to Rick’s aversion to Republican attempts to attract the Hispanic vote. If you re-run every California election going back to 1960 with today’s demographic and vote split, Republicans lose them all–both Governor Reagan’s two elections and all the presidential elections that Republicans won through 1988.

Reagan’s pollster Richard Wirthlin has gone further and suggested that what has happened in California is going to happen nationally unless Republicans compete better for the Hispanic vote. It is not a matter of obsession; it is a matter of necessity.

Those Nutty Cubans


You are right to point that out, Nick. Sure, it’s a wild photo and all that — but how desperate do you have to be to make a boat out of a car? I don’t think those guys were trying to come here because they want their MTV.

Did you read the other day about Celia Cruz? She recently visited Guantanamo and put her hand under the fence saying, that’s as close as I’ll get to Cuban soil until Castro is out of there.

Kristol, McCarthy, Liberals—and Coulter


I have been wondering whether anyone on The Corner might take up the thread of Ann Coulter’s over-the-top argument in her latest book (especially after David Horowitz, or all people, disavowed her on his site—see) and Jonah finally did, however obliquely, in his comment on the Kuznet-Kristol-Gephardt business.

Coulter’s attempt to rehabilitate Joe McCarthy wholesale is likely to give McCarthyism a bad name. Her style is not suited to it. While we await M. Stanton Evans’ major book on McCarthy, we would do well to recall a passage contemporaneous with Kristol the Elder on McCarthy that gets the problem with McCarthy just right from a conservative perspective. It is from one of Whittaker Chambers’ letters to Bill Buckley, collected in Odyssey of a Friend (must reading if you’ve never seen it—you understand Witness and Chambers a lot better from these remarkable letters).

In February 1954—just a few months before McCarthy’s Waterloo in the Army hearings, Chambers wrote this to WFB:

“It is no exaggeration to say that we live in terror that Senator McCarthy will one day make some irreparable blunder which will play directly into the hands of our common enemy and discredit the whole anti-Communist effort for a long time to come.”

This pretty much has it right on. Even before I ever saw The Manchurian Candidate, it occurred to me that a clever KGB disinformation officer would dream up someone like McCarthy in order to sully anti-Communism.

Chambers returned to the problem of McCarthy in an April 1954 letter that gilds this point:

“Senator McCarthy was almost made to order. He is a man, fighting almost wholly by instinct and intuition, against forces for the most part coldly conscious of their ways, means, and ends. In other words, he scarcely knows what he is doing. He simply knows that somebody threw a tomato and the general direction from which it came. His general tactic might be epitomized in Samson’s bright thought of setting fire to the foxes’ tails and sending them helter-skelter against the enemy. A tactic not altogether ruled out in a minor skirmish in a guerrilla war—but it is not a strategy; and repetition dooms it, not only to defeat, but to boredom.”

Come to think of it, this critique may apply to Coulter’s technique as well.

Pine Tar


This week marked the 20 anniversary of the infamous pine-tar incident, one of the great baseball imbroglios of all time. Like all Yankee fans, I still haven’t forgiven MLB. The whole dispute is very much like the 2000 Florida election controversy, with the Royals in the role of the Gore legal team (the rules shouldn’t apply to us), the Yankees in the role of the Bush team (sorry, the rules are the rules). Last night, I saw the footage of the actual home run by George Brett, which I haven’t seen a long time since what is always re-played is the footage of him running out of the dugout like a maniac. It was high heat, up and inside, and I can’t believe the way Brett turned on it. What a marvelous hitter, probably the best I’ve ever seen in person (I’ve never watched a Barry Bonds game).



E-mail: “I’m a fairly regular reader of NRO and the Corner, and as a Texan (a Texas Aggie, at that) I must say I’m very proud that you think we `always eat up rip-roarin’ right-wing talks…’ I hope Texans always appear that way to out-of-staters, and I hope any “Texan” who doesn’t appear that way becomes an out-of-stater (e.g. the cowardly Democrats in the legislature).”

To My Benefit...


I subbed-in for Rich. Great crowd, nice folks, good times. I did mention to the audience that I was worried that Rich’s eye infection might have something to do with the fact he’s been researching a book on Bill Clinton for over a year. “I hope it’s not venereal,” I might have said.

To My Regret


I had to cancel on YAF. I have an eye infection that has appalled friends, colleagues, and my doctor, and makes me look like Rocky after about 9 rounds (“Cut me Mick!”). YAF provides the best of all audiences for a conservative speech, with the possible exception of any group based in Texas. In my experience, Texas audiences–even if it’s the Ladies’ Home and Garden Club– always eat up rip-roarin’ right-wing talks…

More Judicial Nominations


It’s official. The President today nominated Brett Kavanaugh of the White House Counsel’s office and Justice Janice Rogers Brown of the California Supreme Court to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

Gillespie On Bush and The Dems


AP reporter Ron Fournier details
Ed Gillespie’s speech to the RNC.  Gillespie is, I think, right to point out
that the Dems are flailing, trying to attach any scandal or charge that they
find to Bush.  That doesn’t mean that they won’t find something to stick in the
next year or so.  He’s got a job cut out for himself, especially if he tries to
keep up with Terry MacAuliffe.

It’s also odd that Gillespie borrows almost verbatim from the Convention Speech
in 2000: “The once-proud party of Franklin Roosevelt, who famously told us we
have nothing to fear but fear itself, now seems to have nothing to offer but
fear itself.”

The article makes Gillespie sound as though he did nothing but go negative,
which leads to Fournier’s conclusion that “Gillespie clearly has been cast as
Bush’s attack dog, the quick-with-a-quote operative who can heatedly denounce
Democrats while the president tries to appear above the fray.”  I wonder what
the full text will show . . .
[Link via Drudge]

Promises, Promises


If you think The Corner is slow today, check in tomorrow. Seriously–you can check The Corner from your home computer–it works, it really does. It will be hopping and happening. And, for all you Amtrak bashers, I just got into D.C. with a minute to spare. John Miller’s office, by the way, is frighteningly neat. I think I am moving in.

Not So Comical?


Comical Ali being investigated for involvement in a 1980s murder in Sweden.

Recall Revulsion


Who wrote this on Darrell Issa? ”Davis may have found the perfect demon in Issa, whom he can portray as anti-abortion, anti-immigration, and a fringe right-wing opportunist on a power grab.”
Get the latest summation of the early recall bias here.


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