November 6, 2004
POLITICS/WAR/LAW: 11/6/04 Links
*Now, They Tell Us: the lead story on the NY Times website yesterday was one that veterans of the 1992 election will find familiar: the discovery, all of a sudden, that the jobs picture is better than it was painted in the run-up to the election. I'm watching carefully for signs of economic revisionism where Democrats and Bush Administration critics who just a few days ago were comparing this economy to the Great Depression start arguing that Bush was hard to beat because economic times are good.
*Kos just topped the "screw 'em" classic, by openly hoping for America's defeat in Iraq:
The big silver lining, and it's significant, is that Kerry won't be tarred for cleaning up Bush's mess. Had Kerry gotten us out of Iraq, he would've been blamed for "losing the war". Now Bush will ineptly lose it for himself.
Kos is taken firmly to task for this by Greg Djejerian:
[S]uch flippant treatment of a major national security issue is also very small; and the American people have smelled this smallness out. That's part of the reason a somewhat embattled American president, with a less than ideal economy and with a tough war on his hands, was handily re-elected (I believe not since FDR has a President been re-elected while simultaneously gaining seats for his party in both Houses of Congress). Americans like to dream of big projects and goals--and the Democratic party is failing them in this--content instead to lazily carp from the sidelines. Worse, some of that party's activists, it too often appears, would wish for some important, declared national objectives to be scuttled. Trust me, that wasn't a winning strategy in the past, it isn't one right now, and it won't be one in the future.
Kos is undoubtedly particularly peeved at the failure of his personal ambition to become a power player in the Democratic party, as all 15 of the House and Senate candidates he backed lost. The list, here, is particularly funny now due to the misspellings and egregious cheap shots, like claiming Jim Bunning's mental health was deteriorating. (Link via Blogs for Bush)
*Speaking of Blogs for Bush, the site will continue in a new format, although it's unclear to me how its function will differ from that of RedState.
*Catch Mark Steyn in something close to full gloat mode here and here. I liked this one:
Michael Mooronification damages everyone who gets it.
Look at the recently resurrected Osama bin Laden. Three years ago he was Mr Jihad, demanding the restoration of the caliphate, the return of Andalucia, the conversion of every infidel to Islam, the imposition of sharia and an end to fornication, homosexuality and alcoholic beverages. In his latest video he sounds like some elderly Berkeley sociology student making lame jokes about Halliburton and Bush reading My Pet Goat.
*Speaking of gloating, while I might divide the group differently, I endorse the general sentiment of John Derbyshire as to the people who deserve to be gloated at and those who don't.
*From November 2: Best Jimmy Breslin column ever.
*Lileks on New Yorkers who are aghast at the supposed ignorance of the red states that voted for Bush:
It's a big country. Please take this in the spirit it's offered: we watch the news that comes from New York, read the magazines that come from New York, see the shows that come from New York. It's entirely possible we know you better than you know us. Nu?
*Tim Blair links to some classic inside stuff from the Bush and Kerry camps. The guy who comes off in this as the real political brains isn't Karl Rove but Bush himself - note that Bush figured out before Rove did that Howard Dean was toast in the primaries. Of course, this is consistent with the theory that Bush's expertise is knowing people, and he knew Dean personally.
*Stuart Buck thinks - and I agree with him - that Justices Rehnquist and O'Connor would have retired before the election if it were not for the legitimacy questions that people raised after Bush v. Gore.
*Where credit is due: Wretchard notes that "[t]he French may have performed a valuable service by admitting Arafat to a military hospital in Europe which will reduce the risk of imputing his death to Jewish poisoning, a rumor that has already made the rounds in the Middle East."
Breslin is going to need that time off. Heh.
for someone who's a self-proclaimed 'stats guy' you sure are particular about the stats you choose to recognize. jobs did increase by 300K+, but the unemployment rate also increased from 5.4 to 5.5, which probably is indicative of more people flooding the job market. while the net effect is unclear, it's certainly not the case that 300K more people found jobs all else equal.
Whatever else was going on with Bunning, IMO he deserved to lose just based on the ugly gay-baiting campaign that was run on his behalf.
Devin - You got a link for that? I thought I saw that referred to but haven't seen a good writeup.
ABB - A fair enough point, but my interest was more in the tone and placement of the article - seemed more upbeat than a lot of the pre-election coverage of the economy.
Also re:stats , the House gain is under judicial review. Texas got pine tar all over it.
Things would be bleak for Dems except for two factors. The GOP elite is rapacious. They know it and still are unable to control the greed.
The GOP base is contentious. They want a good, free fight. It's getting a little tough to blame Clinton.
Take away Roe v. Wade. Restrict gay civil unions. I don't think they're ready yet for one man, one woman, one time.
On whose watch will hospitals collapse?
Breslin's farewell column is, by definition, his greatest, because of the pleasure it gives us.
Anyone know what's up with Steyn? Is he OK?