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Howard Dean, Meet Johnny Reb
When Howard Dean appeared yesterday at Dartmouth, my alma mater, the good doctor was greeted by a group of students who had taken some of his recent remarks completely to heart. As the Associated Press reports:
HANOVER, N.H. A group of students who attended Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean’s appearance at Dartmouth College on Thursday unveiled Confederate flags as he was introduced.
The group of about nine students, whom fellow students and Dean campaign staffers identified as conservative activists, did not otherwise disrupt the former Vermont governor’s speech about paying for higher education. And Dean did not acknowledge them or refer to controversy surrounding his recent remark that he wanted to attract voters with Confederate flags in their pickup trucks.
The students sat with the flags draped across their shoulders throughout Dean’s appearance.
Dean declined to comment as he left the college auditorium where he delivered his speech. Spokesman Matthew Gardner later dismissed the incident as “a political trick. And it’s sad that whoever is behind this felt forced to resort to misrepresentation.”
“Misrepresentation?” What was the meaning of that remark? Didn’t the doctor tell us he wanted to become the candidate of Confederate flag-wavers?
Readers Ask The Darnedest Things
As NRO’s math guy, I get all sorts of stuff. Today a reader e-mailed in
with a question about the largest number you can make with three digits and
ordinary arithmetic signs. Well, it depends if you consider the
exponentiation symbol (this one: ^, or this one: **, in most computer
languages) to be an ordinary sign. If you don’t, then 999 is the answer.
(9×9x9 and 9×99 are both smaller.) If you do, then the answer is 9^9^9, a
number of 369,693,100 digits, the first few of which are
4,281,247,731,757,470,480,369,871,159,30…… Of course, if you are
willing to allow more exotic symbols, like Ackermann’s function,
or Donald Knuth’s
up-arrow notation from
Ramsey Theory, the sky’s the limit. Next!
New Middle East Studies News
Corner readers are no doubt familiar by now with the battle over federal funding of Middle East studies (and other area studies programs). But believe me, this battle is anything but old news. On the contrary, the fight over HR 3077 is growing every day. News of this bill is breaking over the academy like a wave. Because their federal subsidies are at stake, politically correct professors are attending to their critics like never before. Here’s one of the more remarkable articles I’ve seen. Essentially, it confirms nearly every point I’ve ever made on this issue–acknowledging that area studies programs do everything they can to undermine government policy, but demanding a federal subsidy anyway. Hey, there’s no special title of the higher education act for philosophy departments. Professors can write and think whatever they like, but that doesn’t entitle them to a federal subsidy. Meanwhile, after a couple of columns in the Yale Daily News misrepresenting the purpose and functioning of HR 3077, this excellent article by Yale undergraduate Jamie Kirchick answers back. Kirchick places the battle over HR 3077 in the context of other attempts by the left at Yale to silence opposition. Finally, here’s an editorial opposing HR 3077 from UCLA’s Daily Bruin. It makes the usual false claims–that HR 3077 will silence opposition to U.S. foreign policy. Opponents of HR 3077 don’t like quoting the actual language of the bill, which does not ban opposition to American foreign policy, but simply calls for the inclusion of many viewpoints. Academics claim to be concerned about academic freedom, but they’ve long since choked off free debate at their own universities. What these professors really want is the freedom to go on suppressing any opposition to their own ideas. HR 3077 doesn’t take away anyone’s right to speak, think, or teach as they see fit. It simply encourages subsidized programs to expose students to many perspectives. If even that is too much to ask, then let area studies get along without special federal subsidies. It’s good enough for philosophy and art history.
More Politics and Rap
Nice piece by David Skinner on the WSJ’s Taste page today on the Democratic candidates trying badly to be hip, including Howard Dean’s affinity for Wyclef Jean:
No, the alternative to rock is rap, and not only for Mr. Dean. Dick Gephardt told Blender that his favorite artist was Eric Clapton, but according to MSNBC he told a documentary filmmaker on the campaign trail that he has taken a shine to Eminem, whose movie, “8 Mile,” Mr. Gephardt “raved about.” Mr. Kucinich’s hip-hop outreach project, the “Representin’ Tour,” has yielded a campaign rap song, available on the Kucinich Web site, written and performed by “hip-hop activist” Joel Tyner. Titled “Go, go Dennis,” its recurring line is: “Dennis / he ain’t no menace.”
And then there is Wesley Clark. He is now appearing in a Rock the Vote television ad, surrounded by earnest-looking college students. “I don’t care what the other candidates think,” Gen. Clark says. “I don’t think Outkast is really breaking up. Big Boi and Andre 3000 just cut solo records, that’s all.” Yes, it’s meant facetiously, but it comes from the same youth-pandering shtick.
Want Your Kids to Read?
They couldn’t go wrong with a NR classic treasure. Click here.
Tax-Funded Hate Radio
Pacifica’s so-called “Democracy Now” radio show this morning was interviewing Oakland-based communist rapper “Boots” Riley of The Coup. Amy Goodman asked him how he responds when people hear or hear about his song “5 Million Ways to Kill A CEO.”
Replied Boots: “It doesn’t mean I’m going to kill them myself. I want the people to rise up and do it.” He then discussed how he hopes violent revolution will come when the unions get strong enough to call general strikes, which the military will have to put down.
But his enthusiasts aren’t limited to public radio. Brent Bozell slammed Washington Post rock critic David Segal when he puffed Riley in 2002.
Michelle Malkin also noticed when Segal suggested Riley made the “Best Album” of 2001.
Rick Santorum a few minutes ago pleaded with his Dem colleagues to “Stop now.” He warned that if they don’t stop the filibustering, when there is a Democratic president, the GOP will never allow another liberal top pass through the Senate. No more Ruth Bader Ginsburgs. Etc. I know what he was aiming for, but I’m just hoping the evening newscasts don’t pick that up as their soundbite. The message will be: BOTH parties are all about partisan politics. Pols being pols. Yada. If only there were a soundbite of Charlie Schumer or one of the California Babses admitting that women and minorities who are conservative are simply unacceptable.
In Case You Were Wondering
No progress has been made, so far as I can tell, in this marathoning. Barbara Boxer said a few ago: “the worst thing that could happen to women in this country” would be having someone like Carolyn Kuhl on the bench. The worse thing? Is there any concept of a reality beyonf NOW and NARAL and EMILY’S List cash?
I asked a Senate senior staffer last night the key to staying awake through this monotony. The answer: “I think about how Hillary said she was comparing apples and lemons and the lemons are the judicial nominees.”
Too Much Is Never Enough
The AP reports on Senate Republicans’ decision to extend the judicial nomination talk-a-thon.
Scofla Saves Naacp Suit
A tightly divided Florida Supreme Court resuscitated the NAACP’s suit against Florida’s plan to eliminate race-based affirmative action in state university admissions, as reported here. By a vote of 4-3, SCOFLA overturned a lower court ruling that the NAACP lacked standing to challenge the policy.
Guns & Commerce
Yesterday a divided panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that the federal machine gun ban is unconstitutional as applied to the simple possession of a homemade machine gun. Such regulation, the Court held in an opinion written by Judge Alex Kozinski, is beyond the scope of the federal commerce clause power. Eugene Volokh and Larry Solum comment here and here.
France and Germany are reportedly looking at some form of closer entente. Paradoxically enough, despite the tone of this account in the Daily Telegraph of these developments, such moves shouldn’t be any great cause for concern: if anything, these steps are a recognition that Paris and Berlin are gradually coming to the realization that their wider project – a quasi-federal EU – is increasingly unlikely to succeed.
Of course, there’s another striking aspect to this story. There’s no mention of what the electorates of these two countries have to say about this news. There’s a good reason for this. As usual, they have not been consulted, and, as usual with elite schemes such as this, they are unlikely to approve.
Just Make The Bloody Switch
Yesterday, Sen. Cornyn cited Zell Miller in his piece for us on the judge marathon. Saxby Chambliss is reading from Miller’s book from the Senate floor right now. I’m sure Zell Miller’s life wouldn’t be half as interesting as it is now if he went GOP, but you know everytime Miller is mentioned it just makes the Schumers of Leahys of the world more determined to obstruct.
Washington Post writer Peter Carlson reviews the filibuster in today’s Style section. I refuse to link to it, since reading it is a waste of time. His point is to avoid the point of the filibuster (question: is it proper for the Democrats to filibuster judicial nominations?) and mock this talkathon as a silly exercise that will ultimately mean nothing.
Yesterday on Today, Matt Lauer quickly asked Tim Russert at the end of an interview on something else if this would accomplish anything. Russert said no. It’s kind of perversely funny. Senate leaders threw the talkathon to force the media to talk about the problem. Their response is to talk about the event will accomplish nothing. The major media (surprise) line up with Team Daschle.
Santorum is trying to force a vote now…OBJECTED…
Jindal For Governor
The Louisiana Republican has a piece in the WSJ on jobs and other good stuff:
The people of Louisiana are hungry for more economic opportunities. Why should our children have to pursue their dreams in Houston, Atlanta, Birmingham, or Charlotte? Here’s why: We’ve created a climate in Louisiana that’s hostile to business, to progress, to taxpayers. New Orleans was once the capital of the South, but 75 years of demagogues ranting in Technicolor ways about government being the answer to all our problems has taken a toll. We’ll eliminate the investment taxes unique to Louisiana that keep businesses away, reform our tort system so that we’re no longer among the worst states in terms of frivolous lawsuits, and ease the regulatory burden so that small businesses can create jobs. This message is resonating with our voters. Louisianians want to build their own version of the American Dream, and the crying shame is that they don’t have enough opportunities to do it here at home.
They Will Pump You Up
Rick Santorum and Sam Brownback are doing a little judicial activism tag teaming now. Santorum was just going through the Constitution in search of “the right to privacy.” Shockingly, it has not been found. They’re steamed and pumped and ready to take this to battle at 8:30.
It’s 5 a.M.
Do you know where your senator is on judges?