Friday, October 05, 2007


The entire "conservative" media movement, from Limbaugh to O'Reilly to Coulter, is based on old Andrew Dice Clay skits.

Former speechwriter and current MyDD blogger David Mizner explains his support for John Edwards:

Some Democrats are unbothered by a candidate who claims to be a budget hawk as long as she or he also supports the kind of programs that the country needs. But there are two major problems with this approach. One, it's dishonest, the "progressive" counterpart to voodoo economics. Two, it won't work: when President Hillary Clinton proposes programs, the GOP would use her own paeans to balanced budgets against her. At that point she would have to make the choice she's refusing to make now, and I see no reason to believe she would make the right one. President Edwards, by contrast, having run a forthright campaign, would have a mandate for his ambitious proposals.

This is not the kind of difference that gets headlines. It's not sexy. It may seem esoteric. But it's defining. It speaks to priorities, philosophy, values. Do you want the country to balance its checkbook or fix its infrastructure and fight climate change? It's the difference between liberalism and new liberalism, between Robert Rubin and Robert Reich, bewteen progressives and the Progressive Policy Institute.
Worth reading.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Chessmasters, they are:

Mr. Leahy and other Senate Democrats had suggested that they would press for a variety of documents involving the firing of the United States attorneys and the eavesdropping program before agreeing to schedule confirmation hearings for a successor to Alberto R. Gonzales, who resigned as attorney general last month.

The decision to go forward with the hearings appeared to reflect a calculation by Mr. Leahy and other Democrats that they did not want to be seen as willing to leave the post unfilled after complaining so loudly of turmoil in the department under Mr. Gonzales.

Monday, October 01, 2007


And so I offer three ways to interpret what's going on here: a) the Edwards campaign is irresponsibly punting on the question of being able to win a general election until it can get through the primary, despite stakes that couldn't be higher for the nation, and has private data that shows Clinton to be its major competitor (call that one the Markos theory); b) the Edwards campaign is making a short-term tactical mistake by ignoring the impending Obama threat while taking on Clinton; or c) Edwards is a person of principle who sees in the Obama campaign more of what he would like in the White House, and is going to go down in such a way as to try to take Clinton with him.
Or d) Edwards is holding out hope for an Edwards/Obama ticket.

From a New York Times profile of Freddie* Dalton Thompson:

Mr. Thompson parlayed the resulting attention and connections into a lucrative legal and lobbying career. Colleagues say he was skillful, if not always driven. At the Washington firm Arent Fox, where Mr. Thompson was registered as a lobbyist from 1991 to 1994, he was well liked but brought in few clients and billed only about 500 total hours.
That's my kind of work ethic.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Sy Hersh, in the New Yorker:

This summer, the White House, pushed by the office of Vice-President Dick Cheney, requested that the Joint Chiefs of Staff redraw long-standing plans for a possible attack on Iran, according to former officials and government consultants. The focus of the plans had been a broad bombing attack, with targets including Iran’s known and suspected nuclear facilities and other military and infrastructure sites. Now the emphasis is on “surgical” strikes on Revolutionary Guard Corps facilities in Tehran and elsewhere, which, the Administration claims, have been the source of attacks on Americans in Iraq. What had been presented primarily as a counter-proliferation mission has been reconceived as counterterrorism.
It seems like it must be a joke, but it's not.

(Crooks and Liars has Hersh's appearance on this morning's Late Edition.)

Front page, Sunday Washington Post:

Bush's EPA Is Pursuing Fewer Polluters
Probes and Prosecutions Have Declined Sharply
Get out!

John McCain believes "the Constitution established the United States of America as a Christian nation." Really truly.

Which leads me to ask, again: what is it that Jon Stewart continues to like about this guy?

(Probably the amount of respect McCain has for "the Islam.")

They're pretty impressive, those conservative bloggers.

Hypocrisy is magnificent.

Incidentally, I tend to agree with Greenwald's commenters (see the Update at the bottom of that article): the MoveOn vote was a disgrace and an embarrassment, and having a vote of our own (whether for Limbaugh or for someone else) isn't going to do anything to solve that. Greenwald's response is persuasive ("it is ... far preferable ... to ensure that [the] corrupt standard is applied equally rather than allow it to be applied by one political faction against another"), but at the end of the day, the Democrats would cheapen themselves by sinking to the Republicans' level. Don't surrender the high ground.