Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
May 17, 2004
POLITICS/WAR: Linkmania 5/17/04

Time to dump out a bunch of links I'd accumulated but won't have time upon which to blog:

*Where else in the world but the U.S. is it a "coverup" if you announce an investigation in a press release posted on the internet? Also: if the problem with Abu Ghraib is humiliation, isn't that multiplied by airing the pictures? I mean, the media won't publish the names of rape victims, but it will show this? And this picture about says it all on the President's reaction to this story.

*Pete Stark is just crazy. And he's not alone.

*Michael Barone thinks it's 1988 again. Read the whole thing.

*Daschle's stall on judges hits new lows.

*Too good to be true? Vodkapundit sees hope for the end of EU farm subsidies.

*Jimmy Kimmel Suckers the NY Times.

*Boston Globe on blogs; the key point here is the fact that blogs are all about the print media, and can miss out on the significance of events that are especially TV-centric.

*Missing hijacker? Nelson Ascher takes this with a grain of salt, and you should too, but it's an intriguing one.

*A delightful WaPo profile of John McCain:

He has no idea why George Tenet still runs the CIA. "I think he must have some negatives somewhere," McCain says, meaning photo negatives.

McCain met with Tenet at Langley about a year ago. Seemed like a good guy, McCain says. Tenet made his case for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and it sounded compelling.

"But it was a little like a Chinese meal," McCain recalls. "An hour later I was hungry again."

McCain is that rarest of creatures, a genuine maverick. Guys like him usually wind up just being in the wrong party, like Arlen Specter or Zell Miller. But McCain is, on some issues, as conservative as they come, and on others he is frankly quite liberal. But wherever he sets his sails, he never trims them.

*Interesting NYT Magazine profile of Bill Richardson, who the WSJ Political Diary says has been ruled out of Kerry's veepstakes on account of "indiscretions involving women." The profile paints him, without saying so, as being very personally similar to Bush: a retail gladhander, short on details but long on the ability to read people and get deals done. Annoying: NYT refers to Los Alamos solely as a PR problem. Most off-message quote: "I've seen the Republicans' Spanish ads. They're good.'" This doesn't fit the Dems' endless mantra that Republicans could never possibly communicate with 'minority' communities.

*Hugh Hewitt on Ted Kennedy saying that "Shamefully we now learn that Saddam's torture chambers reopened under new management, U.S. management.":

[T]he audience fears it has seen this movie before. Those of us born before 1960 get a sick feeling --it cannot be happening again, can it? Not after 9/11? The last time it was harder to see the consequences of retreat --the boat people, the Cambodian holocaust-- but not this time. This time retreat means death on these shores and in large, possibly overwhelming numbers. They came close to destroying the government less than three years ago, and Kennedy's outrage is unreported?

So I focus on the outrage . . . The voters "get it." They know. The polls show a tight race, but that's a tribute to the fact that polling cannot anticipate the moment in the fall when the public looks up, looks at Kerry-Kennedy, and says, "Are you kidding? I want my kids to live, and I want this country to survive as it is, not as it would be if the jihadists grew in power and numbers. I don't like the war, but I understand its necessity. And the president and Rumsfeld and the whole bunch of them are serious, determined types who will get it done."

Saddam's torture chambers have not reopened, newspapers have. We're winning. "Sometimes history is written in hot, little dusty places on the Earth," Marine Corps Major General James N. Mattis said yesterday after himself driving with his Marines into the center of Fallujah. "That's what we did today, and it's good history."

Mattis or Kennedy. Bush or Kerry. What a choice.

(Link via Instapundit).

*Mark Steyn on Canada:

[E]ven if Papa Khadr did turn out to be a big A-list al-Qaeda guy, M Chretien personally intervening to get him sprung from jail in Pakistan so he could resume his, ah, "charity work" still "sends the right message" about what a multicultural society we are. We're so multicultural we'll let you choose which side of the war you want to be on. And, when M Chretien told Mr Khadr's son that "once I was a son of a farmer, and I became Prime Minister. Maybe one day you will become one", that too "sent the right message" - that in Canada anyone can grow up to be Prime Minister, as long as they're from Quebec.
* * *
Canada . . . is less an exception to every rule than a guy who's holding the rule-book upside down. It's a big country in an age of ever smaller states. It's a big country with a querulous regional minority not on the distant horizon - as the Basques are to Madrid or Northern Irish nationalists are to London - but a querulous regional minority the subvention of whom is the governing principle of the state.

It's a big country in an age of global trade: NAFTA, say the authors of The Size Of Nations, makes it more likely Quebec will secede. Don't hold your breath, boys.

It's a big country with the military of a smaller country: if Quebec declared independence tomorrow, that's it; there would be no latter-day Wolfe to re-take the Plains of Abraham, no detachment of Lord Strathcona's Horse fighting street to street in the East End of Montreal, no RCAF bombers taking out the Champlain Bridge. Quebec could win their country by issuing a press release.

Read the whole thing, if you can (registration required).

Posted by Baseball Crank at 09:40 PM | Politics 2004 • | War 2004 | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

On that Michael Barone piece - I follow New Jersey politics pretty closely, and Bush doing so much better is against the trends - Democrats won the governship in 2001, held the Senate seat in 2002, and gained in the State Senate and Assembly in 2003 (granted, there were a lot of local factors in that). McGreevey's not very popular, but he doesn't seem to be strongly disliked, so I don't think he's the major problem.

I'm not sure whether I should be afraid of the onslaught of presidential campaign ads, or if I should just be relieved that they'll cut into attack ads for House races on Long Island.

Posted by: Devin McCullen at May 18, 2004 11:09 AM
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