I understand all the major news broadcasts will be spending roughly the first ten minutes of their broadcasts gushing on Al Gore’s predictable
anointing, er, winning of the Nobel Peace Prize, those trinkets which lately seem to be more about hating George W. Bush than about really honoring anyone else’s dubious and quite unsettled work. While it doesn’t like it’s going to happen, I rather hope Gore enters the presidential race because at least then it will be interesting. I assume Bill Clinton signed off on the granting of this prize, first, because I can’t think Gore would ever get one before him, otherwise. Or maybe Clinton is smart enough to realize that a prize shared by the likes of Yassir Arafat and James Earl Carter is not much of an award, anymore.
Doris Lessing was out grocery shopping near her home in London yesterday when the Swedish Academy announced she had won the 2007 Nobel Prize in literature. She returned from the store to find a media circus, the wire services reported.
“Oh Christ!” she said, when told about the monumental honor. “I couldn’t care less.”
A good attitude! Contrast it to the sort of puffed up, barrel-chested pride we’re going to see coming from Mr. Gore. There are reason why some people live to ripe old ages, and I think one of them is simply having a good attitude and realizing how much of the world is – as I have said before – simple illusion and trend. I hope I live to be ripe, as well. Meanwhile, Gina Cobb has more thoughts on Gore. I don’t. I’ve written about him enough in the past year, and frankly expect all of his award-winning proclamations to end up rather like this. Pajamas Media has the definitive round-up.
No, I am not going to write any more about Ann Coulter because, as often happens when discussing the Great Big Illegal Immigration Imbroglio, the comments section has already reached the point where the talk is circular and repetitive, so screw it until someone can say something original – or at least more interesting.
Meanwhile, Kathy Shaidle has an interesting question for the Rudy-haters on the right. I don’t know if I think the answer posed by the question is true – I am very friendly with many Evangelicals who have moved beyond distrusting Catholics, and I know more than a few who have already declared they’ll vote for Rudy if he is the nominee – but it is still an interesting question, especially on a day when I have gotten some hate mail from fellow Christians who think I know nothing of scripture or theology because I’m “only a Catholic,” or who express some doubt as to whether I might be a Christian at all because of my Roman perspective. My favorite of those was the guy who sent me a link to this article and declared the Pope should read the bible and get acquainted with Christianity, which is odd, since the piece doesn’t quote His Holiness at all, but whatever.
Because I am weary of right-on-right bickering, I was very glad to read this piece by Lori Byrd in which she takes a look at how unproductive all the needling back-and-forth is, and how it weakens the right:
Many Republicans are battling over the reason for the 2006 losses and come down in different camps. Some think the cause was not enough Republicans running as strong conservatives — especially on the issues of spending and immigration. Others think the blame lies with those Republicans who preferred their side go down in defeat to punish those who did not take a strong enough stand on various issues. I think it was a little bit of both.
One big problem I see right now for the GOP is that some factions within the party are too busy trying to convince each other they are right about what went wrong in 2006 that they can’t come together to build a strategy that will win elections.
Lorie points out that there are thousands of ways to lose elections, and the right seems to be trying them all on for size.
It’s a theme hitting home with more than one writer. David Brooks suggests that the right has lost sight of the kitchen table and the middle class. Bruce Kesler says common sense usually wins and wonders where the GOP’s went. Bookworm suggests that getting a handle on what the right stands for, anymore could help.
James Taranto takes a look at the very different tone Columbia University takes when discussing a noose and a swastika. One would think that the taunting use of either object would be equally offensive, but apparently not.
On the Clinton front: I’m sorry if it seems like I link to a lot of “Clinton” stories, but since it seems like there are two Clinton stories for any one story written about any other person, place or thing in the world, the overabundance of them means they are over-represented here, as well. In no particular order, here is a questions about Clinton investment advice, and who is giving Bill Clinton all that money to start with, which is a relevant question when one considers that a first spouse’s funders and backers could conceivably expect favors from his wife, the president. I know, I know, it’s unimaginable that such things could happen in a Clinton administration – what am I thinking – but still…it’s a pertinent question. Also, as much as I’d like to believe that Hillary Clinton means to give up powers once she
ascends takes control of the WH, I must shrug and say, “who gives up power? Why should we believe this?” The press is still not asking Mrs. Clinton any questions about Norman Hsu, or his seemingly extensive and impressive catalogue of Clintonian memorabilia – although, actually, I don’t know what there is to say about it – and they are (typically incurious when it comes to Clintons) not at all offended that she is using images from 9/11, which are only offensive when Rudy or W uses them. For Hillary – A-OK!, and no we in the press don’t care if you’ve never been very clear about your actual 9/11 experience of the day. Or, you know, eavesdropping. Or, you know, the idea of a serious presidential candidate bringing Sandy Berger onto the team again, or bothering to remind anyone why that’s kind of a sleazy idea.
Oh, and Bill Clinton seems to have told one of his “charmingly exasperating” little fibs that he just can’t resist. I don’t find them charming, but a friend of mine does, hence the quotes. He is sad because he wants his official presidential papers released “even sooner” than the law requires…except, I guess those that Sandy Berger, that old goofyhead, stole, lost or destroyed.
Last on the Clintons (I told you, there is a LOT out there about them, the ration must be 2:1 on stories) – we know that many of the Clinton administration operatives have married into the press both figuratively and literally:
There are now Clintonistas set up in positions of power and authority in every media and informational venue, all over the world. They’ve either “become” journalists, like George Stephanopolis (and several others) in America and Sidney Blumenthal in England, or “married” journalists, women like Jennifer Loven and Christiane Amanpour, who can be counted on to do their jobs.
Now comes the revelation that they’ve even got the gossip pages covered by an insider.
Hey, if you own the press, you pretty much can do any damn thing you please. Sleeping well with that, are you?
Resumes still do count, when it comes to picking the right person for the right job, do they not?.
I’m a cemetery haunter/walker/picnick/stone-rubbings-taker myself so I would be up in arms about this myself, no matter who the graveyard was being dug up for. Leave cemeteries alone. They’re good places and we should preserve them.
Amazing: Blood vessels grown from a patient’s own skin. And just because it occurs to me and is worth repeating: the total of useful EMBRYONIC stem cell therapies successfully tested, remains at zero.
You’ve probably seen this moving piece by Christopher Hitchens, which is simply a heartbreaking, uplifting, inspiring story, told by a master wordsmith who manages to give us all lessons in humility. I read this and wonder if I have inadvertently inspired any sort of behavior (for good or ill) in anyone, and then wonder if I should be writing at all. Very humbling, very thought-provoking and troubling piece, for me personally. And while I know some of my Christian readers don’t like it, my admiration for Hitchens remains.