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Blegging: Hank Williams Bio


Rosie & I are going to see the Hank Williams play-bio-songfest
on Jan. 25th. I am a huge HW
fan. (Not so Rosie, who had to be patiently talked into it. “White trash
music!” she sniffs when I play HW. Rosie, in most respects a sweet and
charitable soul, has a streak of class snobbery. Amazing that after 16 yrs
she has still not woken up to the fact that SHE MARRIED WHITE TRASH.)
Anyhoo, it has occurred to me that I have never read a proper biography of
HW. Checking Amazon, I see at least three. One will be quite enough,
thanks–but which one should I read? Anyone know which is the best HW
biography? Answers to [email protected] please–my hotmail account silts
up with 250K emails promising to enlarge my organ/breasts/portfolio, so the
2K emails from friendly readers get bounced with “Inbox full” messages. I
wish Hotmail would do something about this.

Re Re Derb Tv


As a matter of fact, I do occasionally stray off the Fox reservation. As a
Johnny Carson addict from way back in the 1970s, I occasionally, if
circumstances keep me up past my regular bedtime (10pm, like Calvin
Coolidge), catch one of the late night chat shows. If I could just keep my
eyes open into the small hours, in fact, I could be a big Conan O’Brien fan.
He has a silly, anarchic approach that appeals deeply to the still-British
part of my soul. Interesting guests, too. The other night he had Billy
on. I haven’t seen Billy
since his early career as a TV comic in Britain 25 years ago. Now he is
gray-haired and paunchy–strange how that happens. Not as funny as I
remember, either. He used to have a wonderful vein of scatological humor,
and British-born Boomers can recite whole Connolly routines from that
period. “I were sittin’ on the karzy, squeezin’ the blackheads oot o’ my
thighs. You know, the way you _doooo_… Joinin’ up the dots to make a
giraffe…” These people are all political idiots, of course, air-head
lefties–but hey, so was Einstein… [NB for non-Brit readers: "karzy" is
low-Brit slang for "toilet." I don't know the etymology, but have a vague
feeling it's one of those Arabic words the squaddies brought back from Egypt
and that other place--what's it called?--oh, yeah: Palestine. Like "bint"
for "young woman."] [NB NB: "squaddie" means "soldier of rank below


Re: Derb Tv


K-Lo: I think that’s right. However, Cablevision, my “service provider”
(hooo-hooo-hoooo!) randomly shuffles the numbers of the channels two or
three times a year, so I settle down to watch O’Reilly or Malcolm and find
myself looking at Animal Planet. Who knew baboons had that much fun? “Life
is unfair.” Kids don’t have these problems. Cablevision has agents posing
as Ob-Gy nurses in hospital delivery rooms, implanting chips in the brains
of newborns so they will always know how to find Nickelodeon.

Web Briefing: September 18, 2014

Anti-Drug Demagogy


I’m doing a quick column on ridiculous anti-drug ads—the latest being the one where one kid smoking dope shoots another kid smoking dope, by accident, of course, under the influence of the evil weed. Any thoughts would be appreciated…


Orwell On Pacifists


In 1941 he wrote:

“In so far as it hampers the British war effort, British pacifism is on the side of the Nazis and German pacifism, if it exists, is on the side of Britain and the USSR. Since pacifists have more freedom of action in countries where traces of democracy survive, pacifism can act more effectively against democracy than for it. Objectively the pacifist is pro-Nazi.”

In 1942 he wrote in Partisan Review:

“Pacifism is objectively pro-Fascist. This is elementary common sense. If you hamper the war effort of one side you automatically help out that of the other. Nor is there any real way of remaining outside such a war as the present one. In practice, ‘he that is not with me is against me.”’

I looked up these quotes because I have to debate a leader of some group which intends to lead a horde of “human shields” to Iraq in order to make bombing Iraq more difficult. Here’s the story. If there’s more to the history of human shields than meets the eye, I’m all ears. Alas. this will be for CNN International so I doubt many of you can watch. Should be fun though.

Crazy Taxes


Here’s a funny article from CNN Money on the crazy taxes levied in various states, like the “jock tax,” which is a tax on the money made by athletes, entertainers, and their entourages. An economist quoted in the article explains: “If the Dallas Cowboys play the Bengals in Cinci, and they’re in town Friday through Saturday, then each player, as well as everyone else traveling with their team, will be taxed on three days salary—and the Cowboys are from a state with no income tax.”

Derb Tv


Derb, tell us the truth: you only watch Fox stations, dontcha?

Blix Mix


Hans Blix is saying the Iraqi document drop was incomplete and that there were “no smoking guns”–you mean the Butcher of Baghdad didn’t supply maps to each of its nuclear weapons? “We think that the declaration failed to answer a great many questions.” (The Corner didn’t have to read the papers to come to that conclusion.) His answer seems to be to insist the U.S. hand over all its intelligence on where and what so that their inspectors can spend more time their while Saddam keeps working. He stresses that there is “no time limit” on the inspections. Nice that the British papers are singing the same general tune.



I get lost in this TV talk because I hardly watch TV. How do you guys find
the time? I have a book review due for Roger Kimball tomorrow, and I
haven’t even read the friggin book yet. I did, though, accidentally catch
part of an episode of that reality TV show about the bachelor who’s posing
as a millionaire in a French chateau. Oy oy oy. Things are bad. Modest
proposal: If the Romans had had this technology, they’d have kitted out the
girls in leather bikinis, given them swords, nets, and tridents, and let ‘em
fight it out. Now that would be worth watching.

Wait a Second...


I’m eating soy pudding and Toffurky and John Miller is getting gee-whiz tours of NORAD? What the #$%^&!? Rich Lowry proves once again that he is the most terrible man on the planet

Chavez On Bush


I missed this one yesterday: Linda Chavez’s fine article on the Bush administration and the decision it soon must make about filing a brief with the Supreme Court in the University of Michigan case on racial preferences. This is an important moment for conservatives, who will be deeply distressed if the administration files the wrong kind of brief or (more likely) none at all.

New Reich


Otto Reich is heading to the White House.

That Figures


An environmental activist has decided to “step down” from a tree after 69 days because “he wants to spend more time with his family.” That’s fine. But was he surprised that he couldn’t spend much time with his family while in a tree? I mean, usually when politicians say they’re “stepping down” to spend more time with their family (when they’re not lying) it’s because they were suprised by the increasing demands of the job and how they made it impossible to make time for their family. But it sort of goes without saying that when you go up in a tree, quality family time isn’t going to be easy. Anyway, I just thought it was funny. Thanks to for the link.

Ya Give An Inch...


…many of you have already pointed out that Klingons have battle crusiers, not starships. Duly noted.

My Syndicated Column...


Another “But”...


…Jonah, as bad as West Wing is, the alternative (which more people evidently opted for) on ABC was the Bachelorette, snubbed by Bachelor I (she was the runner-up), getting dirrty with 25 slightly creepy guys. A few too many minutes of “reality” TV could leave anyone wanting back into the Clinton crowd’s fantasy White House.



West Wing promises to be the height of somber and serious drama compared to the offal heading our way in the form of “Mr. Sterling.” “Mister” — get it? As in Mister Smith, who went to Washington. “Sterling” as in “Sterling” silver, which is what his heart must be made of beneath that broad hunky expanse of man-chest (Prediction: we see the Senator with his shirt off within the first three episodes). Put the two together and it equals a weekly sprinkler system of crap. From the promos alone, the schtick seems to be that Mr. Sterling looks like Warren Beatty (before Beatty needed diamond-cutter lighting to prevent his forhead from looking like Oklahoma with a hairline), talks like John McCain channelling Oprah Winfrey and votes like Paul Wellstone. We already know he’ll be an independent and that he likes to march with farm-workers. But, unlike most senators, he’s actually willing to talk to them! Bless his heart. Maybe it’s the soy milk in my veins or the nitrogen bubbles in my brain, but I think this may be the show most in need of the regular intrusion of Monty Python-esque bloodthirsty pirates to slaughter everyone in the room.

West Wing


Again, the show reached a new plateau on the way to the bottom. I feel the need to watch it as a matter of professional obligation now more than anything else. The show does inform how millions of people think politics and liberalism work. But, as Hans and Franz used to say, listen to me now or believe me later: I would rather stop a weed whacker with my tongue than watch the heart-wrenching romantic barf-o-rama that next week’s show promises to be. Watching C.J. deal with her ailing father would be awful enough. But watching her get smoochy-faced with Matthew Modine defies several clauses of the Geneva Convention.



…However, I **do** lay claim to “Bloombergshchina,” though unfortunately
you need some reading in Russian history to appreciate it, and a more than
averagely dexterous tongue to say it.

Corner Quote of The Day


“The television show The West Wing might as well have been set aboard a Klingon starship for all it resembled life inside the Bush White House.”
David Frum, The Right Man


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