The Latest Tweets from Team NRO . . .
Re: What’s Up?
Peter, actually Arnie Steinberg says the Terminator’s lead might not be as big as it looks.
How to Climb Online With The Washington Post
Several readers (and my thanks to them all) have sent me emails, asking how to join the online discussion at the Washington Post website of How Ronald Reagan Changed My Life this afternoon. The Post’s fine webmaster explains all:
To direct people to your discussion you can either send them to the direct
link…or direct them to washingtonpost.com/liveonline where they will find a blurb
on your 2 p.m. (ET) appearance.
What’s Up With Ueberroth?
I’ve been assuming that the real conservatives in the California race are Bill Simon and Tom McClintock (yes, I know Arnold has an enormous lead, but I’m trying to figure out which candidate to give my heart to if–when?–Arnold stumbles) but a couple of readers have told me I ought to take a good look at Ueberroth. So what’s up with him? Why does he call himself a “moderate?” Is it just the same-old, same-old–in other words, the old “I’m fiscally conservative but socially liberal” saw? Or is Ueberroth more conservative than that?
Memo to Bill & Tom
William F. Buckley Jr. once answered a question about whom he intended to support for president by saying, “the rightward-most viable candidate.”
Arnold leads the pack right now, obviously, but I suspect there’s still a chance for a true conservative such as Bill Simon or Tom McClintock to achieve real viability. How? By doing something both sensible and dramatic: Calling for a constitutional amendment to place an overall cap on state spending.
Then Governor Reagan’s 1973 ballot initiative, Proposition One, would have capped state spending at seven percent of personal income (the measure would have scaled spending down to that level over 15 years). Such a measure today would transform California, restoring it to its status as-well, as the Golden State. Colorado’s 1992 initiative limited increases in spending to an amount equal to increases in population plus inflation. That wouldn’t do as much for us as a replay of Prop. One because spending in California is already at such a high level, but, Lord, would it ever be an improvement.
Bill Simon? Tom McClintock? Somebody? Go for it.
What’s all that on the homepage? Nice to have NRO back to normal, eh?
Retro Housewife Diet Next Craze?
Apparently that gym membership isn’t paying off. A study by British magazine Prima found that women in the 1950’s were in better shape than women today. They attribute this to household chores–washing, ironing, cooking, etc.–without the aid of high-tech appliances.
Dismal Prospects in The “Dismal Science”
NR intern Carlos Ramos-Mrosovsky e-mails: “The Economist reports that supply of economics PhDs in the United States has outstripped demand. According to an article in the British magazine’s August 7th issue, applications to graduate economics programs have risen by 70% since the 2000-2001 academic year while employment opportunities in the private sector and academia have fallen by about 10% yearly. An opposite dynamic seems to be at work in Britain: British enrollment in economics programs at UK universities has slumped though Continental students are flocking to economics programs. European demand for economists has risen, thanks to the Eurotechnocracy’s insatiable appetite for economic analyses.
“On their side of the Atlantic: central planning and creeping socialism. On our side: Oversupplied economists, or, in a word, poetic justice. ”
More Like a Cornered Rat
Alexander Cockburn is not, shall we say, the soundest of sources, but this comment of his is too good not to repeat:
“Gray Davis…now proclaims that he is going to fight ‘like a Bengal tiger.’ It takes one to know one. Bengal tigers like to hang out near some village and eat small cows, fearing even the stately water buffalo. When its teeth go bad the Bengal tiger gives up on the cows and starts attacking elderly, defenseless humans.”
Via Reason’s blog.
Reason’s Nick Gillespie and several other folks have pointed out this AP report that examines Colin Powell’s speech to the UN Security Council making “the case” for war in Iraq. Nick thinks the report is pretty devastating. I’m not so sure, but his observation gets at a larger point.
I’m painting with a broad brush here, but supporters of the war felt they didn’t need Powell’s case at the UN, they were just hoping he wouldn’t screw it up or would stifle the critics. They always felt there were much larger issues at stake, issues justifying invasion besides those outlined by Powell. And for opponents of the war, it mattered very little what Powell had to say, they were just hoping that he might blow it and thus slow the momentum leading to war. Again, because larger issues were at stake, issues for which no detailed Iraqi threat would justify an invasion.
Iraq is one small albeit important part of a larger debate over America’s role in the world, how it should assert itself and in what ways, and in what ways it legitimate to attempt to rearchitect the world so that it is favorable to freedom and peace. And within that context, Powell’s “case” really was, in some sense, irrelevant.
No Npr Pac
National Public Radio isn’t going along with public-TV lobbyist plans to start a pubcasting PAC. That doesn’t mean these bureaucrats aren’t skilled at campaigns when someone is bold enough to question their antics. (See Sen. Larry Pressler, as in former.) The funniest explanation came from one board member:
“If NPR endorsed a PAC, pubradio’s political opponents could cite it as evidence that the network has political leanings.” As if there aren’t grounds now?
The Bellipotent Corner
Not long after I reported on the plight of “About Last Night,” my server finally came back up. Coincidence or causality? You decide.
Canada Marriage Update
The Canadian government’s efforts to legislate national gay marriage in Canada are definitely in trouble. An article from the Globe and Mail reports that the number of MP’s prepared to vote against the government’s gay marriage legislation may be sufficient to block the bill. Much hinges on a number of undecideds coming under heavy pressure from constituents to vote no. It is too early to say anything definitive, but I can also report that, behind the scenes, a move to a bill mandating civil unions, rather than full gay marriage, is at least being considered. Even if the government backs off of gay marriage, the Canadian courts may still impose it. On the other hand, although it has never exercised it, parliament does have the power, under the Notwithstanding Clause of Canada’s constitution, to defy a court imposed nationalization of gay marriage. So the final outcome in Canada is at least in doubt. This is enormously significant. It is notable that, although Canadian polls continue to show majority support for gay marriage, constituent pressure has been heavily against gay marriage. It is possible that, after a genuine public debate, which Canada has never had, public opinion may begin to swing the other way. But the real lesson for us may be that, even in a country with a majority for gay marriage and a court system bent on bringing it about extra-legislatively, the intensity of opposition may well be sufficient to sway parliament against the change. How much more intense would be the political pressure in the United States (where clear majorities oppose gay marriage) after legalization in Massachusetts?
“If We Started Touching, Things Were Going to Start Happening.”
I’ve always been a little skeptical about movements like The New Abstinence and True Love Waits. Not because these folks’ hearts (and other body parts) aren’t in the right place, but because I wonder how sustainable these movements are in today’s culture. Either way, here’s evidence that some people have taken it to heart.
Jill Merry and Adrian Burwell began dating last November. They got engaged in May. But the first time they kiss will be Aug. 16 — at the altar, in front of more than 600 people.
“We have all the same emotions everyone else does. We just decided to put guidelines to it,” said Merry, 26, of Bellevue. “We knew that if we started touching, things were going to start happening.”
Of course, Merry’s guilty of a kind of slippery-slopism here, and we wouldn’t want to open that can of worms in the Corner again…
Prove It or Correct It
Paul Krugman’s manmade mountain of lies is simply growing way to high. So NRO Financial’s Don Luskin is issuing a challenge to Krugman’s employer, the New York Times: Either demonstrate that Krugman’s obviously wrong calculations, characterizations, and quotations are in fact accurate, or correct his errors. Enough is enough.
Do Not Adjust Your Set
Dear Cornerites: If you are also a daily communicant of my arts blog, “About Last Night” (which turned one month old today, incidentally), you may be wondering why Monday’s posts have yet to materialize. Did I oversleep? Am I burned out? Has K-Lo kidnapped me? None of the above. The answer is that the server for my host, the invaluable artsjournal.com, has been down all night. We’ve been experiencing intermittent denial-of-service attacks in the past couple of weeks. Be patient–I’ll get Monday’s stuff up as soon as possible. In the meantime…hey, you’re in the Corner! Party down!
Jayson Blair Rides Again?
Catholic radio talkshow host Jeff Cavins did an interview with CBS News the other day surrounding the controversy over its reporting of a secret document purporting to be a “smoking gun” in the Catholic sex abuse scandal. Cavins says CBS engaged in “creative editing” to make it seem like he was angry not at CBS for its inaccurate (in his view) reporting, but instead furious at the Vatican. Cavins says he has a tape recording of the interview he did with the network, which proves he was sandbagged. And he wants to pay them back.
(By the way, Fr. Thomas Doyle, who provided the alleged smoking gun document to a couple of lawyers, sent an e-mail out to his list today — I’m on it — saying that the document was not the big deal that many are saying. Fr. Doyle, a canon lawyer, says if he had known the lawyers were going to release it to the media, he would have provided interpretive commentary to help people understand what it really meant.)
Following on the lead of Time and Newsweek and their Arnold profiles, the network morning shows hit the California recall hard this morning. NBC had Mr. and Mrs. Gray Davis, followed by Cruz Bustamante and Bill Simon. ABC had ex-Sharon Stone spouse Phil Bronstein, who insisted that strange people run in other states, like Oliver North. CBS had the strangest person: Arianna Huffington, who plugged her website, which proclaims the need for a fabulous red-headed governor with an accent for the grubby, impoverished masses, “not just those who can afford to buy their own personal politician.”