The Corner

Gregg & Principle

O.K., everybody, let’s not get carried away.  Gregg had been publicly castrated (in the political sense) almost as soon as he accepted the nomination: The White House took away one of the few important functions that the Commerce Department actually has with the Census because they wouldn’t entrust it to a Republican.  That he didn’t resign then and there was a disappointment to me.  It is good that he saw the light, and his withdrawal further undermines Obama’s empty claims of bipartisanship.  But let’s not go giving awards to Gregg for exercising the common sense he should have used in turning the job down in the first place.

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Thursday Links

It's William Shatner's birthday: Here he is in 1978 'singing' Rocket Man, plus a Star Trek/Monty Python mashup. Sold: Isaac Newton’s Notes on the Philosopher’s Stone. It was a long time before anyone admitted that he was interested in alchemy. High-tech forgery: Computer-generated 'Rembrandt' ... Read More

Korea: A Deadly Question

Olympic Games often have political significance, as in 1936 and as in the Olympics just past -- the Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Those Games seemed as much political as athletic. I talk about this with Michael Breen on my latest Q&A. Breen is one of our best Korea-watchers, one of our soundest ... Read More
Film & TV

Superannuated ‘Idol’

In the pilot episode of Fox’s American Idol, Simon Cowell defined the show’s thesis: “We are going to tell people who cannot sing and have no talent that they have no talent. And that never makes you popular.” The show’s producers and its three judges -- Cowell, Paula Abdul, and Randy Jackson -- kept ... Read More