March 7, 2007

We're ready for our close-up, Mr. DeMille

Seeing how she wasn't a covert agent and all

"No one has been charged with leaking (Valerie) Plame Wilson's name to the press" -- last sentence in next to last paragraph of story in today's Boston Globe about the verdict in the Libby trial.

Go figure

"Libby did not speak to reporters" -- from an AP story last night about verdict in Libby trial.

March 6, 2007

Must be that limited DC jury pool

The AP story about the Libby verdict mentioned in the preceding post also contained this eye-opener -- one of the jurors, Denis Collins, is a "former Washington Post reporter." Huh ...?

Allow me to offer an alternative scenario to put this in perspective -- say that James Carville, in his capacity as chief of staff to future Vice President Barack Obama, was on trial for the same charges as Scooter, and one of the jurors was a "former reporter" for Fox News -- think that might raise an eyebrow at

Verdict in Libby trial

... and with it the first story I've seen coming out of the trial, posted online this afternoon by the AP, to explicitly state that Scooter Libby "was not the source for the original column outing (Valerie) Plame." Yet another story, however, that manages to avoid mentioning the name of said source, former State Department official Richard Armitage.

A distinction making all the difference

Canadian author Irshad Manji, quoted by Bret Stephens' in his "Global View" op-ed column in today's Wall Street Journal, under the headline "Islam's Other Radicals" --

"Moderate Muslims denounce terror that's committed in the name of Islam but they deny that religion has anything to do with it. Reform-minded Muslims denounce terror that's acknowledged in the name of Islam and acknowledge that our religion is used to inspire it."

Reform-minded Muslims, in other words, are willing to acknowledge reality, unlike "moderate Muslims" and their Western apologists.

Great moments in Escapee history

From the AP's "Today in History" column -- "In 1967, the daughter of Josef Stalin, Svetlana Alliluyeva, appeared at the US embassy in India and announced her intention to defect to the West."

March 5, 2007

But of course they hate books too

The headline this hour at the website of the NY Times -- "Explosion kills 20 in Baghdad Book Market" -- that the jihadists would target a bookstore comes as no surprise. From their perspective, patrons of such an establishment are automatically suspect, what with their propensity for curiosity and asking awkward questions. Something else the Islamists have in common with the Nazis, their ideological cohorts of the last century. Then again, the Nazis burned books, they didn't blow them up. So much more efficient to set them ablaze.

Another prime target -- children -- typical of a warped ideology that offers all the future of a death cult while harkening back to an alleged golden age which never existed. Going after children means fewer book store patrons to target in the future.

Memo to McCain: You need to get nominated before you can get elected

What is it with John McCain -- deliberately blowing off a major annual conservative conference --- while he's running for the Republican presidential nomination?

Not sure if using Ralph Nader as your guiding spirit is the way to go, Senator.

James was always the solemn one

"The United States, with its war, racism, sexual restlessness, religious confusion, and economic disparity, is a nest of festering confusion" -- Boston Globe columnist James Carroll, in today's paper.

Odd how Carroll and so many other vociferous critics of this "nest of festering confusion" can rarely bring themselves to live in other -- invariably worse -- "nests."

March 4, 2007

Yeah, and it cost him a PT boat

John F. Kennedy "believed that the use of military force should be a last resort" -- excerpt from a March 2 op-ed in the Boston Globe by Graham Allison, director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and author of "Nuclear Terrorism: The Ultimate Preventable Disaster."

McClellan influences another war

Transcript of remarks on "Meet the Press" appearance by Michigan Senator George B. McClellan, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, as conveyed by telegraph from NBC's Washington bureau ...

Tim Russert (voiceover intro): our issues this Sunday ... staggering carnage on the battlefield ... rioting in northern cities ... growing resistance to the war among Democrats .... all with no end in sight ... with us today, a man who knows the horrors of war far better than anyone, the former Union general challenging President Abraham Lincoln in next year's election, the Honorable George B. McClellan. Welcome, Senator McClellan, and thank you for taking time from your busy campaign.

McClellan: You are most welcome, sir, but I would appreciate if you would kindly address me as "General."

Russert: By all means, my apologies. General McClellan, you've introduced a resolution in the Senate that would limit the president's ability to wage war. Why?

McClellan: It's obvious to all but the most oblivious that this war is going quite badly - thousands of our soldiers dead, vast devastation and ruin, the military strained beyond its capacity, growing discontent at home - all based on an illegal and dishonest rationale for halting Southern secession. In fact, our revered Constitution makes no mention of secession, as even a backwoods lawyer like Lincoln is surely aware.

Russert: Are you saying, Sena ... sorry, General ... that ending slavery can be achieved without force of arms?

McClellan: What I am saying with crystal clarity is that the Confederacy is a separate, sovereign nation not beholden to the simplistic whims of another nation's autocrat. What the South does within its borders is its business, as with the North. Is there a whit of difference between the so-called slavery of the South and the brutality of child labor in Northern mills? Not that I can see. All Lincoln has succeeded in doing is to put our soldiers in the middle of a civil war.

Russert: But would you not agree that the South provoked the conflict with its attack on the federal military post at Fort Sumter?

McClellan: I strenuously disagree with the premise of your question, sir. It has never been proven that the honorable leaders of the Confederacy -- and they are all honorable men -- had anything to do with that attack. From what I understand, it was undertaken by 19 freedom fighters armed with primitive weaponry and acting at the behest of a renegade leader with no connection to the Confederacy. Lincoln has used this flimsy pretext to wage a massive invasion of the South, conscript thousands against their will, suspend habeus corpus - even toss journalists like you into jail for asking impertinent questions!

Russert (a tad nervously): What about the fate of millions of slaves in the South -- would not a Union retreat from the battlefield consign them to lives of misery?

McClellan: How convenient of Mr. Lincoln that he keeps changing the rationale for the war. First we were told it was needed to maintain the Union, then to counter alleged Southern aggression, then to liberate these so-called slaves. What next, to provide voting rights for women? And how anyone can claim this war has helped the people it was supposed to liberate is beyond me.

Russert: How then would you resolve the issue of slavery, which has haunted us since the Revolution?

McClellan: By the most forceful and strenuous of negotiations, sir, and not just with the Confederacy but with Britain, France, Spain and Mexico, all of whom are inclined to act in our best interests. Once we take this long-overdue strategy, it will clearly signal to the world that the Union is not to be trifled with ...

March 3, 2007

It's all coming back to me

From the AP's "Today in History" column yesterday:

Ten years ago: It was revealed that Vice President (Al) Gore had raised millions of dollars through direct telephone solicitations, and that some of the calls were made on special phones installed in government buildings for that purpose.

Go figure

"Libby did not speak to reporters" -- from AP story last night about verdict in Libby trial.

March 2, 2007

Democrats retreat on war funding

Force of habit, you might say ... news today out of Washington - "Just hours after floating the idea of cutting $20 billion from President Bush's $142 billion request for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan next year, Kent Conrad, Senate Budget Committee Chairman, was overruled by fellow Democrats yesterday," writes the AP's Andrew Taylor.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada is quoted as telling reporters, "It's nothing that any of us are considering."

Translation: It's nothing any of us are considering any longer after several nose counts found us short on votes.

The last Kennedy willing to fight

... the USS John F. Kennedy arrives in Boston yesterday for its final port call on the hometown of its namesake -- great photo on the front page of today's Boston Globe.

Unable to see past caricature

In that Feb. 25 column of Garrison Keillor's I quoted a few posts back, Keiller claimed that the Republican Party "is the captive of people who believe that most of us are destined to spend eternity in hellfire ..." -- count me among those who believe it is "many," not "most," and not limited to non-Republicans -- " ... and when you believe that, you will inevitably find it hard to persuade the damned to vote for you.

"You take a Republican to lunch and he is obligated to bring out a big black book ..." - uh, the Bible? -- " ... and open it to Revelations ..." -- sure enough -- " ...and tell you that the beast with 10 horns is Hillary Clinton" -- while the multi-horned beast in question is clearly another New Yorker, George Steinbrenner ...

Well yeah, that too

In an AP story earlier this week, Rudy Giuliani explains his Democratic past (I know how you're feeling, gov) and is quoted thus: "I don't think anything separates us more right now between Republicans and Democrats than how we look at taxes. What we understand as Republicans is that, sure, the government is an important player in this, but we are essentially a private economy. What Democrats really believe is that it is essentially a government economy."

Couldn't agree more with the latter part of that statement, nor disagree more with the former. A much biggest difference? Democrats are convinced that George W. Bush is the greatest threat to peace in our time -- Republicans know that the threat comes not from Bush, but from radical Islam, and has since for long before Sept. 11.

March 1, 2007

Who you callin' ho?

From the March 5 issue of Time -- the photo alone makes subscribing worthwhile.

Picture final scene in 'Animal Farm' to put in proper perspective

"Did you know that (Al) Gore's uses more electricity in a month than the average household does in a year?"

Or that Gore's "heated poolhouse" burns "more natural gas - $500 a month worth - than most of us can afford to use while heating houses that shelter people, as opposed to swimming lanes.

As pointed out by an editorial in today's Wall Street Journal. It didn't take long after "An Inconvenient Truth" won an Oscar for best documentary (with all these additional Oscars every year, you'd think they'd get around to one for best propaganda) for news to break of the former VP's rather porcine energy consumption down at the ranch.

Ah, but the ever-clever Gore compensates for this through the convenient purchase of "carbon offsets." As a result, "one might burn up thousands of dollars worth of natural gas to keep one's poolhouse toasty," as the WSJ editorial points out, "then do penance for this carbon sin by paying someone else to put up solar panels."

"Mr. Gore is rich and fortunate enough to be able to afford the 'carbon offset' for his energy indulgences," the WSJ edit states in conclusion. "The middle-class parents who need a gas-guzzling SUV to haul the kids to soccer practice might not be so lucky. They might even settle for an unheated pool."