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OTB’s STATUS

OTB’s STATUS: I’ll be in Portland, Oregon for the International Studies Association conference from early Tuesday February 25th until the afternoon of Sunday March 2nd. Unless there is an Internet cafe in the hotel and I have more time than I expect, I will likely not blog until my return. Amuse yourself with the archives […]

UN HAS CREDIBILITY NOW?

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UN HAS CREDIBILITY NOW? WaPo reports that Administration officials are telling Security Council members that the US is going to war with or without their approval and that the credibility of that body is at stake. Which rather begs the question. The Security Council has been in existence since the end of World War II. […]

LAST CHANCES

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LAST CHANCES: As promised recently, PoliBlogger has added more examples of previous “last chances” for Saddam.

LEAST ADVANCED COUNTRIES OPPOSE US:

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LEAST ADVANCED COUNTRIES OPPOSE US: The Non-Aligned Movement is calling for the US and Israel to quit warmongering. The article does not mention why the Non-Aligned Movement still exists, since the Cold War–which had two superpowers to which one could refuse to align oneself–ended well over a decade ago. The Movement consists of 114 peace-loving […]

GRAMMY SCAMMY

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GRAMMY SCAMMY: The unfortunately named Arizona Congressman Jeff Flake wants to know why taxpayers are sponsoring the Grammys to the tune of $800,000 He quips Norah Jones won a handful of awards last night for a song called “Don’t Know Why.” I think that could probably describe a lot of taxpayers trying to figure out […]

WE GOT NEXT

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WE GOT NEXT: Andrew Sullivan has some amusing excerpts from a Sunday LA Times story on Iranian dissidents who favor a US invasion of Iraq. My favorite: “Are they changing their mind?” Goli Afshar, a 23-year-old student, asked as she alternately tightened and loosened her grip on a mug at a cafe on Gandhi Street. […]

OOPS, YOU’RE DEAD

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OOPS, YOU’RE DEAD: NYT reports a troubling trend of prosecutors opposing the overturning of capital punishment sentences even when strong evidence of innocence emerges: A prosecutor was trying to block a death row inmate from having his conviction reopened on the basis of new evidence, and Judge Stith, of the Missouri Supreme Court, was getting […]

YOUR TAX DOLLAR$ AT WORK

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YOUR TAX DOLLAR$ AT WORK: John Hudock has some information on some ridiculous expenditures on fatcat perks.

DICTATORS ON PARADE

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DICTATORS ON PARADE: Parade has published David Wallechinsky’s list of the Top 10 worst living dictators: 1) Kim Jong Il – North Korea (Age 61, in power since 1994) 2) King Fahd & Crown Prince Abdullah – Saudi Arabia (Ages 80 & 79, in power since 1982 & 1995, respectively) 3) Saddam Hussein – Iraq […]

EX-PREZ ETIQUETTE

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Peggy Noonan has a beautifully written piece on the lost tradition of former presidents being reluctant to criticize their successors in today’s WSJ. She contrasts the public support of Ike and Nixon for JFK after the Bay of Pigs fiasco with the constant carping of Clinton and, lately, Carter. Do you remember or know how […]

DOVISH DEMOCRATS

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DOVISH DEMOCRATS: Howard Fineman explains the growing number of anti-war candidates vying for the Democratic presidential nomination. My guess, predicated on my belief that victory in Iraq will be swift and relatively bloodless, is that one of the pro-war Democrats (Edwards or Lieberman) will win the nomination because the other side will look silly. Of […]

SCHMOKE ON SMOKE

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SCHMOKE ON SMOKE: The unfortunately named Kurt Schmoke weighs in on the merits of decriminalizing drug use in today’s Baltimore Sun. (via RCP)

ON BLOOD AND OIL

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ON BLOOD AND OIL: Ken Adelman’s NY Post column addresses the “No Blood for Oil” nonsense. The heart of his argument: It is remarkable how Iraq’s huge oil reserves – second largest in the world – prove two key points. First, just how desperately Saddam clings to his nuclear, chemical and biological weapons programs. His […]

GRAMMYS REDUX

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GRAMMYS REDUX: I didn’t watch the show but I gather there was very little of the feared politicking. According to Drudge, thw closest anyone came is Sheryl Crow: Crow, whose guitar strap featured the words “NO WAR” during her on-air Sunday night performance, stopped short of her AMERICAN MUSIC AWARDS turn when she wore a […]

GAZA BLOODBATH

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GAZA BLOODBATH: UPI reports the escalation of Israeli activity in Gaza, with eleven Palestinians and one Israeli killed in fighting today. The report does not enumerate the casualties in such a way that the reader might distinguish between combatants and non-combatants. Clearly, the Israelis are targetting Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists; but it is unclear […]

PLATO, ARISTOTLE, . . .AND

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PLATO, ARISTOTLE, . . .AND BRAUN? PoliBlogger reports that Carol Mosely-Braun graduated from college but isn’t sure what her major was. It was political science. As I noted on the comments section of his blog, it doesn’t say much for the political science professors at the University of Illinois at Chicago, from which she received […]

GETTING KERRY’D AWAY

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GETTING KERRY’D AWAY: Paul Waldman explains in WaPo‘s Outlook section why he thinks it’s John Kerry’s nomination to lose. The short version: He’s been annointed the front-runner and front-runners always win unless they really shoot themselves in the foot (a’la Gary Hart in 1988). Why? Because the major media basically perform the function that the […]

GRAY DAVIS

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ScrappleFace has an amusing parody about the bid to recall California Gov. Gray Davis. How Davis got re-elected, given his utter incompetence and lack of integrity, I can not understand. I certainly would have voted for virtually anyone running against him were I a California resident. That said, this movement strikes me as dangerous. It’s […]

CD, RIP?

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CD, RIP?: NYT has an interesting look at what may be the demise of the compact disc, at least as it pertains to music. According to the article, kids nowadays prefer to watch DVD movies and play video games–not to mention downloading their own music from various P2P file swapping venues. While I can envision […]

INSTA CONFUSION

INSTA CONFUSION: Glenn seems to think this post by PrairiePundit has proven Patty Murray wrong. While I just took that as a given, I can find nothing in this post which seems to do anything of the sort. (I presume he’s talking about her nonsense about bin Laden feeding the hungry, as that’s the only […]

THAT SETTLES IT

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Daily Pundit is joining a long list of those boycotting French and German products. I hereby pledge not to buy that 7-Series Beemer I’ve been eyeing and not to buy a bottle of Dom Perignon until the war is over. And I might keep on boycotting even after that.

CLOONEY DRUDGED

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CLOONEY DRUDGED: In his typical hyperbolic manner, Matt Drudge entitles his link to WaPo’s story on actor George Clooney’s anti-war comments “We can’t beat anyone anymore.” Clooney actually makes a much more intelligent point–that war seldom seems to solve anything these days because it often creates action-reaction cycles. This point has merit and deserves some […]

THE OTHER WHITE CANDIDATE? Slate’s

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THE OTHER WHITE CANDIDATE? Slate‘s William Saletin asks whether the entry of Dick Gephardt into the fray will split the white vote.

FREE AT LAST

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FREE AT LAST: CBS apparently has heeded my advice and will let awardee’s have free speech at the Grammy’s. No word yet on the right to keep and bear arms.

LAST CHANCE?

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LAST CHANCE? President Bush says the next UN resolution on Iraq is the organization’s “last chance” to prove its relevancy. Which seems harsh, as it implies somehow that the 17 other resolutions on Iraq weren’t phenomenally helpful.

7 DEGREES OF BIN LADEN?

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7 DEGREES OF BIN LADEN? The Skeptician presents the definitive case for an al Qaeda-Hussein connection.

CULTURAL AWARENESS

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CULTURAL AWARENESS: Dave Barry has some amusing links up today: This Kikkoman soy sauce ad is hysterical. Who knew there was an actual Kikko-Man? Sadly, this story on the US “chicken defense” is not a satire. It’s from Time Magazine.

FOUR HORSEMEN OF THE ABLOGOLYPSE

FOUR HORSEMEN OF THE ABLOGOLYPSE: Several sites (including Inoperable Terran and Daily Pundit)are buzzing over this coinage, by someone called MaxSpeak, to describe the villainy of Andrew Sullivan, Glenn Reynolds (InstaPundit), Charles Johnson (little green footballs), and Steven Den Beste. Sullivan and Reynolds are charter members of my blogroll and LGF has recently been added. […]

KICKING THE SECULARIST HABIT

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… is the title of of an interesting piece by David Brooks in The Atlantic Monthly, in which he explains why he no longer thinks that, as the world becomes richer and better educated, it’ll become less religious. His observations as to why it is that a lot of bright, well-off, well-educated folks are either […]

HOW TO ARGUE

Jane Galt of Asymmetrical Information has a rather long response to people who send her hate mail. Well worth the read. It always strikes me how few people can muster a decent argument, resorting instead to ad hominem attacks, ranting and raving, vulgar comments, and other such idiocy. I’m never sure what it is they […]

WHOM WOULD JESUS BOMB?

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WHOM WOULD JESUS BOMB? Is my favorite idiotic sign carried by war protestors, according to a compilation by MoronWatch. I haven’t independently verified these, of course, and he could be flat making them up. They’re amusing either way. (link via CSW)

BUZZMACHINE IS F’D

BUZZMACHINE IS F’D: Jeff Jarvis makes some very rude comments about the helpful suggestions Secretary Tom Ridge provided in regards to fighting terrorists with plastic and duct tape. Actually, several days worth of rude comments. Plus, there is a link to a Ready.gov parody site.

SCHISM ON THE LEFT

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SCHISM ON THE LEFT: I’ve been discussing Just War theory as it applies to the impending war with Iraq with Sean-Paul of The Agonist. This brought to mind my post here a couple weeks ago on Prof. Michael Walzer’s comments at Brookings (transcript of which is now up here). The mental gymnastics to which decent, […]

BLOGROLL PLUGS

BLOGROLL PLUGS: I’m apparently on a few more blogrolls than I thought, including a couple of sites I haven’t visited until this evening. Everything Burns, whose tagline is “Beware of poems, they are the manifestation of death.” Damn. Diary of a Madman, which is thankfully not Ozzy Osbourne’s blog. Don’t think I’d want to be […]

MO BUCKS FOR OIL

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MO BUCKS FOR OIL: The Agonist has an amusing take on the recent hike in gasoline prices.

DANCING WEASELS REDUX

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DANCING WEASELS REDUX: For some reason, backBlog crashes when I send long posts. Rather than send my reply to Doug Spirduso’s thoughtful opening comment to the previous post as four or five mini-bursts, I’ll just do it here: I dispute Doug’s variation on the analogy as applicable. Let’s talk about the actual situation rather than […]

DANCING WEASELS?

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DANCING WEASELS? John Hawkins of Right Wing News skewers Sen. Chuck Hagel and others who are still on the fence about war with Iraq. A choice quote: These guys all think that the United States should act like a nerdy teenager with a pool who is thrilled to have people pretending to be his friend […]

YOU DON’T SAY?

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YOU DON’T SAY? This just in from the AP: The Democrats who are trying to take President Bush’s job from him next year are saying bad things about his policies. I’m not making this up. (link via YahooNews)

TIME IS RUNNING IN

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Read ScrappleFace’s latest parody.

THE CIRCLE GROWS

THE CIRCLE GROWS: I’ve been blogrolled on Common Sense and Wonder.

MARTIAL PLAN INDEED

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MARTIAL PLAN INDEED: I do believe Paul Krugman is going insane. Exhibit A: Meanwhile, outraged Iraqi exiles report that there won’t be any equivalent of postwar de-Nazification, in which accomplices of the defeated regime were purged from public life. Instead the Bush administration intends to preserve most of the current regime: Saddam Hussein and a […]

LIBERTE’, EGALITE’ AND FRATERNITE’

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LIBERTE’, EGALITE’ AND FRATERNITE’ : PoliBlogger has a couple of interesting posts on the so-called “insult laws” in France, which make it illegal to criticize or even jeer the French President.

DETERRENCE PRESUMES RATIONALITY

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DETERRENCE PRESUMES RATIONALITY: Brookings scholar Ken Pollack’s NYT editorial is well worth reading. He makes a very solid case for why Saddam won’t be effectively deterred by mere inspections and sanctions: [W]e cannot forget that all evidence has shown Saddam Hussein to be an incorrigible optimist who willfully ignores signs of danger. Consider that on […]

IT’S A SMALL WAR AFTER ALL

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IT’S A SMALL WAR AFTER ALL: Victor Davis Hanson has a very thoughful peace in NRO which makes the argument that the impending war with Saddam is really a continuation of a broader war. He points out that, historically, it has only been after the fact that most of the “great” wars were seen as […]

TALKING TURKEY

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TALKING TURKEY: MSNBC reports that we appear close to a deal with Turkey to stage part of an Iraqi invasion force there.

SPEAKING OF MUSIC

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SPEAKING OF MUSIC: Skeptician reports that Kim Jong Il has signed a multiple-album deal with DeathRow records.

CENSORSHIP AT THE GRAMMYS

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CENSORSHIP AT THE GRAMMY’S? Matt Drudge reports that CBS is taking steps to ensure that Sunday night’s Grammy show doesn’t turn into an anti-war demonstration, including reserving the right to cut the microphone feed of offenders. While I understand the desire to keep the show about the music–and not alienate the majority of the audience, […]

NOT THAT THERE’S ANYTHING WRONG WITH THAT. . .

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NOT THAT THERE’S ANYTHING WRONG WITH THAT: CNNSI says that Hall of Fame pitcher Sandy Koufax has severed all ties with the Dodgers because a newspaper owned by NewsCorp, which also owns the Dodgers, intimated that he is homosexual. Wait ’til Andrew Sullivan hears about this. . .

WEEKS, NOT MONTHS

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WEEKS, NOT MONTHS: Apparently, the follow-on to UN Resolution 1441 is going to be as vague as the first one: No timeline. I understand the desire to have the UN on board, if for nothing else than to make setting up the post-Saddam goverment easier. But at some point, it strikes me as simple futility. […]

WHO DOES HE THINK HE IS, MICHAEL JORDAN?

WHO DOES HE THINK HE IS, MICHAEL JORDAN? It appears Tony Woodlief isn’t completely retired after all. Just kind of retired. Oh, well. It’s good that he’ll still be around, even if he won’t be updating as often. You’ll just have to console yourself by reading OTB more often.

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