Friday, April 07, 2006

Meant to post this yesterday, but forgot. John Kerry's New York Times op-ed. Quite good, surprisingly.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Former Georgia Rep. Bob Barr, a man for whom I've never felt much esteem, succeeds in making me laugh.

In the case at hand involving McKinney, for example, her disdain for the police force on Capitol Hill is well-known and previously exhibited; and on a particular day in which she is harried, busy speaking on a cellphone and clearly having a bad hair day, it would be obvious that she was a time bomb waiting to explode at the nearest person wearing a badge. Pre-emptive arrest would be not only advisable, but essential to protect her, all police officers within her arm's reach, and the surrounding public. Open and shut case.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Ever wonder where your state reps got all those books they stand in front of when they're making poorly conceived TV commercials?

Over the last two years, the state has reimbursed [State Rep. Mark Cohen] $28,200 on bookstore spending sprees, a review of expense records shows. He spent $1,118 in September alone, making nine trips to bookstores.
I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that a lot of people who read this article came away upset by Cohen's profligacy.

I can understand where they're coming from, but as someone who spends a fairly exorbitant amount of money on books myself, I don't have any particular problem with taxpayers picking up their legislators' Amazon tab. Sure, $14,000 a year is a bit excessive, but in theory, his defense - that he was improving himself as a legislator - is a valid one.

But check this out:
Cohen's book bill for 2004 and 2005 is more than what the Philadelphia School District spent to stock library shelves at the two high schools and two middle schools in his legislative district. The four schools, which have a combined enrollment of 5,000 students, spent $21,600 on books and periodicals in that two-year period, officials said.
Think about that for a second. Four libraries on $10,000 a year. What's that, three new books per library per week? And people wonder why so many high school graduates can't read? It's because entire graduating classes have had to share their library's eight books - each of which is a tattered copy of Crustaceans of the North Pacific ("With 16 Color Plates!") from 1965 - amongst themselves.

Liutenant General William "Earl" Boykin - famous for coming oh-so-close to publicly deriding Islam as satanic - is back... this time waving a letter of support from the always level-headed Sen. George "I even look conservative" Allen. It's a match made in heaven! (And by "heaven," I here mean "an unidentified evangelical church in Northern Virginia.")

(Actually, the article refers to Boykin as "Lt. Gen. William 'Jerry' Boykin," and refers to the man he's hoping to replace as "Gen. Bryan 'Doug' Brown," which makes a person wonder: at what point in their career are they issued a second name, and do they have any choice in the matter, or is it a first-come, first-served type of thing?)

According to this Washington Post article, a text-analysis of the speech patterns of the four major 2004 candidates by Texas psychologist-in-training Richard Slatcher reveals the following:

  • Kerry: sad.
  • Edwards: girly.
  • Cheney: smart.
  • Bush: presidential.
I kid you not.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Hot off the presses! Time's Mike Allen is reporting that Rep. Tom DeLay's calling it quits. Lord, imagine the glee at MoveOn HQ.

(Thanks to On Call.)

Perhaps fearing that Rep. Cynthia McKinney (D-Rocky) would come out of this whole affair with a monopoly on the crazy-points, the Capitol Police today asked a federal prosecutor to seek an arrest warrant for the feisty flyweight. Not to worry, though: Danny Glover's on his way.

Katherine Harris's crazy campaign is on its way off the deep end.

Katherine Harris' U.S. Senate campaign lost what was left of its core team when a top adviser, campaign manager, communications director and other key staff resigned this weekend.
I guess the only thing left for her to do now is to infuse her campaign with energy by pledging $10 million of her own money. Oh, no, wait....

Charlie Cook positively drills Bill Frist:

"The most classic case of the Peter Principle I've ever seen in American politics," Mr. Cook said, in an uncharacteristically brutal assessment. "In a business where eloquence and rhetoric is important, he is a man of no talent whatsoever."
Hot damn!

This seems crass, and I hesitate to mention it, but the joke is too obvious to pass up: Jesse Helms is actually crazy.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

David Brooks, on why politicians' travel riders are boring:

In the first place it's interesting to watch politicians and their staffs try to come up with lists of items intended to produce sensual pleasure. People who go into politics tend to be the sort of hyperambitious workaholics who have repressed the Dionysian side of their natures in order to become high school tools, college applicant all-stars and twenty-something mentor magnets, in pursuit of their dreams of someday becoming deputy under secretary of commerce. Then they flock to Washington, a city with an erogenous zone the size of a pea. These are not people with highly developed hedonism skills.