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|Needless Commentary from Small-Town America|
The Weblog at The View from the Core - Thursday, December 18, 2003
The Washington Papers Look at the Democratic Candidates
Democrats in Self-Destruct Mode LI
WaTi looks at recent... gaffes... by prominent Democrats:
Conspiracy theories continued to sprout among Democrats yesterday in the wake of the capture of Saddam Hussein. Some Democrats expressed alarm that the party was drifting out of the "mainstream."
Madeleine Albright, the secretary of state in the Clinton administration, in a conversation with Morton Kondracke, executive editor of Roll Call and a Fox News Channel political analyst, suggested that Osama bin Laden has been captured by U.S. forces and will soon be produced to the public.
"Do you suppose," she asked, "that the Bush administration has Osama bin Laden hidden away somewhere and will bring him out before the election?"
Mrs. Albright said last night she was kidding. "She was not smiling when she said this," Mr. Kondracke said....
Henry Kissinger, who was secretary of state for Presidents Nixon and Ford, called Mrs. Albright's comment "absolutely ridiculous" and said it exposes a kind of "paranoia" that has engulfed the Democratic Party.
"I am very fond of Madeleine, but there's something about President Bush that blows the Democrats' minds," Mr. Kissinger said on "Fox and Friends" yesterday. "They get so rabid in their dislike that they say things which are absurd. If we could find Osama bin Laden on the same day that we could find Saddam, we would do it. It's just not possible that these captures are timed to embarrass the Democrats. It's a sort of paranoia. I think she got carried away."
Donna Brazile, who ran Al Gore's presidential campaign in 2000, said the comments of Mrs. Albright and Mr. Dean and Mr. McDermott have "no place in our dialogue on this very serious issue. I think most Americans have some lingering doubts about what happened on September 11, but until the commission and Congress completes its investigation, I think it best if people hold these views to themselves. But because we don't yet have a nominee, it's all out in the open." ....
Fascinating. Brazile can't even tell them to shut up without implying herself that there might be something to one conspiracy theory or another.
Tina Brown opines on what the Democratic candidates are lacking:
.... Live-action heroism and a sinking sense that nice guys finish last have reduced the Democratic candidates to little more than the mannerisms that annoyed us in the first place. Lieberman, he of the censorious smile and jungle-book voice. Kerry, the talking tree with the '70s hair. Edwards, hopelessly puppyish at 50. Clark, cyborg hero of places no one can spell. Dean, no longer the exciting insurgent riding to glory on the Internet but a pisher with no past and no neck, poised to lead his party to angry defeat. Only Gephardt retained a certain Great Plains steadfastness; but the nation wants swords, not plowshares "Top Gun," not "It's a Wonderful Life."
Republicans have co-opted masculinity just when the media keep thinking such images are obsolete. The Fab 5 (of "Queer Eye" fame) exist only to change the straight guy's act, not his core. In California the Democrats still think Arnold won because of his celebrity, but as Berkeley professor George Lakoff, author of "Moral Politics: How Liberals and Conservatives Think," pointed out to me last week in Los Angeles, Jay Leno is a celebrity, too, and he wouldn't have had a chance. Lakoff is a bearded, articulate progressive who has done a lot of work on the framing of winning issues. He stresses that Arnold was sponsored by Republican kingmakers because he's a fantasy figure who very clearly represents the strict, punishing father people turn to in times of fear....
"Dubious Link Between Atta and Saddam"?
Any more, I swear, it's probably safest to put a question mark after any mainstream-media headline.
P.S. See Lead and Gold.
"Prayer and the Polls"
An article by David M. Shribman in yesterday's
This country is divided along lines over how we live, love, tax, vote -- and pray. And now that we are about to enter a political year in which we will help decide how we will live, love and tax, there's increasing attention on how we pray.
Three years ago, when the country was divided narrowly over whether to elect Gov. George W. Bush of Texas or Vice President Albert Gore Jr. of Tennessee, one of the biggest gaps was over religion. In the 2000 election, Bush swept more religiously observant voters by large percentages -- and, in the case of white evangelical Protestants, by a margin of more than five to one.
This would matter in any nation at any era; much of British and French history, for example, is the story of religious struggle, and the role that religion has played in the politics of the Middle and Far East, in Africa and in Latin America is well known. Though we commonly argue that we live in a secular age, the United States today is engaged in a bitter national-security struggle with strong religious overtones -- even as the nation itself is moving toward stronger religious belief....
See also "Our Secularist Democratic Party".
Re: Martino and Saddam
From a reader concerning Vatican Cardinal Says Dentists Are Veterinarians:
"My God! O the humanity! We've seen pictures of the brutal, murderous despot getting an oral examination! Why O why didn't the horrible invaders spare us this torture?"
You made my day! Has the Church gone mad? No wonder they have no ability to deal with the underlying problems that have led to the sexual scandal. If their view of reality is so skewed, they are hopeless. We need the Holy Spirit to really zap our leaders -- whatever dosage of grace He was using hasn't been enough.
Michael Novak provides some helpful background information at NRO, yesterday:
The Italian newspaper Il Foglio ran a piece Dec. 16 about the frustration at the Vatican, at the secretariat of state, with the imprudent, irascible anti-Americanism of Cardinal Martino, an unfortunate recent appointment (late last year) to the Council for Justice and Peace, who has not ceased being an embarrassment to his superiors.
When I was in Rome last February, Cardinal Martino was already under heavy fire for his intemperate and irrepressible anti-Americanism. Even those who before the war leaned more to the French/German position than to the American were dismayed by his uncalled-for comments....
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|Needless Commentary from Small-Town America|
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