Was This Racist?

NPR fired a guy for comments that some people consider racist.  I consider them racist, but it’s a marginal case.  It’s almost like they plan these in advance.


Great Article About Freedom and American Government

This uses the 1912 campaign between Woodrow Wilson and Teddy Roosevelt as its example.

As Much As I Love Reading Brooks

His latest article seemed flawed from the first line:

Over the past few months, there’s been a torrent of commentary about political donations and campaign spending. This lavish coverage is based on the premise that campaign spending has an important influence on elections.

The coverage is based partly on that premise, but also on the premise that spending influences governance.  Health care reform helps insurance companies.  Bailouts help recipients.  The stimulus helped all sorts of Democratic interest groups.  These groups are all big contributors.  Also, individual congressmen depend on party leadership for funding and support, because elections are so expensive. As a result, they’re more beholden to party leadership and less able to compromise or change what’s wrong in Washington.

But, I think Brooks over-concludes and under-proves his argument that money isn’t important in elections.  Nobody thinks it’s literally the only factor.  Nobody thinks every marginal dollar works the same way for every candidate in every race.  Nobody thinks the way money is used is irrelevant to its impact.  He seems to be creating these myths just so he can defeat them.  Brooks is much better than that.

This Rocks, From a Few Days Ago

Bill Clinton destroys a few hecklers, from 7:50 to 9:05.

If You Can Remember the Movie, This Is a Good Read

Because I know you saw the movie.  This article about five reasons the movie Big has the most depressing happy ending ever.  Big stars Tom Hanks and the dad from Home Alone and the general from Independence Day (you can basically detect  my age from the description).


Sometimes Joe Klein Sings to Me

I really like this article up until Klein starts talking about Steve Rattner.  The point really is our cynical rebuke of idealism, our misplaced refusal to prize excellence.  There’s is a great point in there.  It’s a lot harder, and less relevant, to explain the causes, which Klein doesn’t do very well anyway.  But, I like it.

Why Was the DE Senate Debate Live on National TV?

Why? Because Christine O’Donnell is unfit for office to an entertaining degree, and her status as a witch is an ongoing dispute that she herself started.  The next step in Reality TV after “Are you smarter than a 5th grader” is watching those who are not try to run government.