The Corner

You’ve Got the Magic Touch

Obama’s losing streak continues. And now he’s taking down college basketball teams with him. Yesterday, Obama phoned John Calipari, coach of the then-undefeated, top-ranked men’s basketball program at Kentucky. He counseled Kentucky’s players — only recently elevated to college basketball’s number-one spot — not to lose their focus. It seems he had the same effect on them that he had on Martha Coakley and Jon Corzine. Kentucky went out last night and lost to unheralded and unranked South Carolina (who came into the game at 11–8). At this point, the New Orleans Saints should refuse his endorsement.  

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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