Friday, February 13, 2004

OpinionJournal - Wonder Land: "With American soldiers fighting overseas, this election offers one last vote on whether the forces put in motion around 1968 will also carry America forward into the new century--or stop, to be replaced, finally, by a new vision."

Mr. Henninger operates from the assumption tha Kerry will have the nomination, and in that case I agree with him. However, I'd like to add that if the Dems are smart, they'll preempt this referrendum by choosing the non-Kerry (i.e. Edwards, or the unlikely Dean) candidate. - Daily Dish: "Maybe this will be the first time that a true firewall is established between the web, the Brits and the rest of the media. Maybe I'm wrong and this won't break out as a major story. That in itself would be a media milestone. (On the other hand, Drudge got 15 million hits in the past 24 hours - twice his normal traffic.) Can we all pretend we didn't hear this and carry on as normal?"

Andrew Sullivan, commenting on John Ellis, commenting on the Kerry story. Good point.
I have to say, it bothers me that I firmly believe if this story was about a Republican candidate for the presidency it would have broken imediately. What I'm trying to decide for myself right now is, does that outrage, and the resulting desire for this story to hit the major media, outweigh my overall pleasure that the media is showing some restraint for once, and my hope that maybe this will establish a pattern. (copied from my post on diet coke for breakfast)

Thursday, February 12, 2004 - Daily Dish: "PARANOID AFTER-THOUGHT: I was always a little suspicious about Terry McAuliffe's raising of the Bush National Guard AWOL issue. I wondered: why are they doing this now, rather than wait till later? Now I wonder if it wasn't a pre-emptive strike. Was it an attempt to ensure that Bush and his aides had decried 'gutter politics' in the week that the Kerry story was going to break? I don't know. But the timing is suspicious. Hyper-paranoid thought: were the dreaded Clintons behind this? It certainly makes the Kerry candidacy less secure, raises the likelihood of a brokered convention, etc etc... Take it away, Dick Morris! Here comes Rodham?"

Sobering thought. The Kerry story is a possible infidelity from the Drudge Report. This will have either a lot of fallout, or be gone in two days. I really can't tell which.

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

David Brooks For President
Op-Ed Columnist: Bush on Bush, Take 2

Ok, maybe not. But I'd at least like him to be able to speak for Bush. He obviously makes the case significantly more clearly than Bush can himself.

ScrappleFace: Kerry Ignores Reports That He Is 'Aloof': "'Just because I was born into wealth, attended an Ivy League school, married two wealthy women and live in a multimillion dollar home in Boston's finest neighborhood, doesn't mean that I can't identify with the common man,' said Mr. Kerry. 'I can relate to the average Joe Sixpack. He loves to hear about my service in Vietnam and I enjoy talking about it. So we have something in common.'"

I know it's just humor, but it raises an interesting point: why I'd never want to run for office personally, aside from the fact that I'll inevitably say something on this blog or in some other forum that will disqualify me from office. By have no ambitions for office, I [d]on't have to pretend I can relate to the average Joe Sixpack. Effectively, it's a license to be arrogant.

UPDATE: A liberal friend of mine (don't worry, Matthew L. Robinson, I won't use your name) chose my above typ of "con't" in place of "don't" to make this statement:
"I think you and Joe Sixpack have more in common than you think because you are both stupid."
Thanks, he-who-shall-remain-unnamed for helping to prove one of my theories about liberal arrogance. I acknowledge that I'm smarter than the average person, but recognize that that doesn't make me any more valuable than the less-blessed. The typical Liberal, it seems to me, does not operate from this assumption set. People like my friend really do believe that the average American is beneath them. Now, it's admirable that this individual also believes that it's his responsibility to help raise them up, even if it is based on the arrogant assumption that they need raising in the first place.

UPDATE: Beth pointed out another important point: yes, I am painting liberals with a fairly broad brush there, and it's very difficult to be accurate in such extreme generalization. I really do believe, however, that most Liberal compassion comes from two lines of reason: 1)The belief that most people don't live as well as they do, some sort of short-changing has occured; and 2)Guilt that they live as well as they do.

(hopefully the last) UPDATE: I suppose I'm being a bit unfair with such a broad generalization. As with any such classification, there are numerous exceptions, on both sides. I think it basically comes down to the fact that, people with opinions worth considering genuinely want everyone to live the most comfortable life possible. There are selfish people and apathetic people on both sides of the aisle, as well as people who try to help the less-privileged merely to ease their own guilt--these people are not worth dealing with, and I've unfairly subscribed them all to the liberal side of things in this post. I came from a moral high-ground that I don't really have a right to stand on, and missed the heart of the issue. Through some thought, I've decided that my two characterizations, while largely accurate, are not what separates Liberals from Conservatives--there are plenty of Conservatives who operate on the same reasoning (though I do think they're more common to the Liberal community). In truth, the division between Libs and Cons (particularly true Neo-Cons) is that the former believes that people acheive the most comfortable life most easily through governmental intervention, while the latter believes in using the government only to create equality of opportunity, then allow people to choose their own level of success.

If there's anything else I haven't addressed, feel free to use the comment link below. If there's more to be considered, I will do so in a new post.

ScrappleFace: Dean to Stay in Race Until Ringing in Head Stops: "The crowd erupted in applause and shouts of 'Yes, we hear it. Run Howard, run!'"

Seems strangely accurate. - 'Peanut Butter' finally free from 'Jelly' - Feb. 10, 2004

Shh! Ah! Ho Cares!

Waiting for the Kerry Bubble to Burst -- Holman W. Jenkins, Jr. (from today's Political Diary):
The Securities and Exchange Commission might want to look into Howard Dean's fundraising. Last week he solicited money from his Internet fans saying if he didn't win the Wisconsin primary on Feb. 17, he'd be out of the race. Now he's saying he staying in no matter what. For that matter, John Edwards has been talking down expectations of his own performance in today's Virginia and Tennessee contests after weeks of saying his big claim to consideration was his ability to win in the south. As putative grown-ups, both men had once sought to distinguish themselves from candidates who hang around the race for the free publicity even after the electorate has clearly settled on somebody else. Not anymore. What's going on?

Perhaps they're addicted to the limelight, but both have also become bolder about predicting that sometime before Super Tuesday, when megastates like California and New York vote in early March, the Kerry bubble will burst. When that happens, disenchanted Democrats will be desperate for a second look at other candidates. "Frankly, I've said before I don't think Senator Kerry's been vetted in the same way I was vetted when I was the front-runner. I think that's a necessary process because we've got to make sure our nominee is the strongest possible nominee," Howard Dean told reporters yesterday. Mr. Edwards, in a separate TV interview, echoed the sentiment: "You don't know what's going to happen a month, three months, six months from now."

Messrs. Dean and Edwards have a point. Mr. Kerry has ascended to front-runner status by almost immaculate means. The great economist John Maynard Keynes once described a speculative bubble as being the result of investors "trying to forecast the psychology of other investors." Mr. Kerry looks suspiciously like the product of an electability bubble. The big question for Democrats is whether the bubble will pop before or after he's locked up the nomination.

Great point. The problem is, as it seems to me, and this passage seems to support, Dean and Edwards are both just sitting back and hoping the Kerry bubble will burst. Without an actual reason, I can't see why that would happen when he's so far out in front. If they want to overtake him, they need to attack.

Monday, February 09, 2004

InstaPundit.Com: "SCOTT OTT HAS LAUNCHED BOYCOTTMTV.COM, a non-satirical site aimed at, well, boycotting MTV.
I pretty much do that already, but not for the same reasons. I'm not shocked by MTV, or repulsed. Just bored and annoyed. Frankly, I'd like MTV better if it showed actual people enjoying actual sex, rather than the winking, leering pseudo-sex that is its stock in trade.
Heck, I'd settle for them actually showing music videos again. . . ."

Glenn Reynolds hits the nail on the head once again...