Archive for February, 2008

February 29, 2008

SOMETHING YOU CAN’T SAY ABOUT CUBA: “Our worst critics prefer to stay.” Heh.

February 29, 2008

THE CANADA/NAFTA STORY continues. I predict, however, that the term “Goolsbee Gate” won’t catch on.

MORE THOUGHTS HERE. And a reader suggests “Naftaquiddick” in place of “Goolsbee Gate.” Er, no.

February 29, 2008

THE INSTAWIFE HAS A SHOW ON FUSE TV, with and about Motley Crue’s Nikki Sixx. It will air again on Sunday at 2 pm. There’s a bit of video at the link, too.

February 29, 2008

VOTING WITH THEIR FEET RAISED RIGHT HANDS: Army recruiting exceeds goals again.

February 29, 2008

JOHN SCALZI released Old Man’s War as a free eBook, and it turns out to have boosted his sales substantially.

February 29, 2008

JOURNEY TO the bottom of the Moon.

Plus, lunar off-roading.

February 29, 2008

OBAMA’S shifting positions on gun rights. Boy, I predicted a while back that his positions would get more scrutiny, and they certainly are.

February 29, 2008

AHEAD OF the opposition.

February 29, 2008

THE IPHONE GOES TO WAR.

February 29, 2008

ANN ALTHOUSE: The crafty Obama finds a way to look magnanimous while actually casting aspersions on McCain. She continues: “Actually, Obama found the only possible low ground and made it look like high ground.”

February 29, 2008

A LOOK AT THE all-important white male swing vote.

February 29, 2008

JOSH LEVIN: I’m the idiot who bought an HD-DVD player.

February 29, 2008

THOUGHTS ON life extension and the longevity dividend.

February 29, 2008

MORE ON THAT LAS VEGAS RICIN STORY, from Popular Science.

UPDATE: National Guard team activated. (Thanks to Chuck Simmins for the link).

February 29, 2008

MICHAEL TOTTEN on the Muslim world’s moderate supermajority.

February 29, 2008

DUMB: Air Force blocking blogs.

February 29, 2008

DO WE WANT A FULL-IMMUNITY PRESIDENT?

February 29, 2008

“DON’T GO INTO CORPORATE AMERICA:” Well, the nonprofit world does pay pretty well too, these days.

February 29, 2008

SO THEY’RE BATTING .500: Sex Toys Still Illegal in Texas and Alabama; Guns OK.

Here in Tennessee, they’re both legal: we don’t care how you choose to fill your hand. There was an effort to ban dildos and vibrators about ten years ago, but it was laughed out of existence following a campaign by a group called “Well Endowed Tennesseans” who accused the legislator sponsoring the bill of phallic insecurity.

February 29, 2008

CAR LUST: Loving the Dodge Magnum SRT-8. Everybody I know who has one loves it — especially the Hemi — though with higher gas prices that may change . . . . Video at the link.

February 29, 2008

PERRY DEHAVILLAND: Not Matt Drudge’s finest hour.

February 29, 2008

APPARENTLY, THERE ARE RACIAL QUOTAS FOR COMEDY, with some roles off-limits based on race.

Related thoughts here.

February 29, 2008

THE NEW YORK TIMES GOES LOOKING FOR MEDIA BIAS.

February 29, 2008

MORE THOUGHTS on that new Hillary commercial.

UPDATE: An amusing response from the Obama camp.

ANOTHER UPDATE: John Dickerson: “The Bush campaign never ran an ad like this when it was accused of scare-mongering during the 2004 campaign.”

February 29, 2008

OBAMA in ’02!

Sounds like the politics of the past. “Interesting that the old codger is looking forward while the youthful dynamist is looking back. But is it surprising? . . . Obama is successfully riding the Democratic Party’s ongoing 60′s flashback in a way that, for example, Mr. Reporting For Duty did not.”

February 29, 2008

THE LATEST PEW POLL ON IRAQ has J.D. Johannes saying “I told you so!”

February 29, 2008

THE INCANDESCENT BAN IS STUPID, and I say that as someone who likes compact fluorescents. But here’s a bit on the future of LED lights. A “wireless lighting revolution?” I’ve been hoping to try some LED bulbs out, but haven’t gotten around to it yet.

February 29, 2008

WELL, PHOOEY: Obama doesn’t read blogs.

February 29, 2008

TREATING CANCER WITH NANOTECHNOLOGY:

Researchers are increasingly turning to new, innovative therapies, based on particles measuring less than 200 nanometers. At that scale, particles passively target weaker-walled cancer cells and help localize treatment, increasing its effectiveness while minimizing damage to healthy tissue. . . .

Developments in this field have accelerated since then, according to Piotr Grodzinski, Director of the NCI’s Alliance. “If you look at where we were five years ago, there was nothing mature enough that the FDA would even consider [it]. Today, there are 20 to 30 small companies in both diagnostics and therapeutics. A handful of those are in clinical trials, and we expect another three or four will file applications this year.”

Bring it on! (Via Nanodot).

Plus, at the Los Angeles Times, a nanotechnology debate. Some related thoughts of mine can be found here.

February 29, 2008

MORE ON DEMOCRATS AND TRADE:

At an event Monday at George Washington University, a moderator asked four House Democrats if any thought it “practical” or a “good idea” to reopen and renegotiate Nafta. The crew, led by Democratic Caucus head Rahm Emanuel, stared uneasily into the middle distance before submitting “no.”

“We’ll see if word gets to Ohio,” joked the moderator.

It didn’t, and that’s got some grown-ups in the party nervous.

Alas, the “grown-ups” aren’t running for President.

UPDATE: Daniel Drezner observes:

I’ve said it before and I will say it again: Democrats cannot simultaneously talk about improving America’s standing abroad while acting like a belligerent unilateralist when it comes to trade policy.

Indeed.

February 29, 2008

MCCAIN AND anti-Catholic bigotry.

February 29, 2008

THINGS ARE HEATING UP: Clinton campaign: Obama must answer for Rezko.

Plus, a remix of Hillary’s new ad.

February 29, 2008

A LOOK AT VOLKSWAGEN’S Golf TDI Hybrid.

February 29, 2008

OBAMA’S NAFTA DOUBLE-TALK confirmed. “After reporting on Barack Obama’s dance with the Canadians on NAFTA yesterday, Canadian broadcaster CTV got accused of perpetrating a smear against the Democratic front-runner. They insisted that Obama meant every word he said about overturning the free-trade treaty, and that no one had contacted the Canadian diplomatic corps to reassure them that it was mere demagoguery. CTV responded today by naming names — and suddenly the Obama campaign has grown quiet.” More here from ABC News.

At least we’re learning which bunch of rubes is being fooled. Coming next — an Obama adviser tells the Iraqi government not to pay attention to his troop-withdrawal talk?

UPDATE: At U.S. News, James Pethokoukis on Obama vs. Obama on trade.

February 29, 2008

THE GOOD NEWS: Bill Stuntz is blogging. The bad news: What he’s blogging about.

February 29, 2008

A NEW VOIP PHONE DEVICE is getting some good reviews. I’ve been skeptical of these things, as I don’t think Internet telephony offers the reliability of landlines. Am I wrong?

February 29, 2008

MCCAIN SUPPORTS DEMINT’S pork moratorium amendment.

February 29, 2008

SMOOT-OBAMA-HAWLEY-CLINTON: “What a sad showing from candidates who are going around promising to repair the Bush administration’s supposed alienation of our friends around the world. Is this how they plan to do it? By dealing with our neighbors and trading partners in Canada and Mexico with threats and ultimatums? . . . All because the environmental standards that arch Republican Vice President Gore negotiated into Nafta aren’t strong enough for the Green extremists running for the Democratic nomination this time around — and because the candidates want to use the trade agreement, rather than the International Labor Organization, to dictate labor standards in neighboring countries. Something like 1,000 economists got together to warn Congress against a protectionist surge when Messrs. Smoot and Hawley were concocting the legislations that helped tip America, nay the world, into the Great Depression. One would have thought the Democrats would have learned.”

Related item here.

UPDATE: Look who’s afraid of free trade.

February 29, 2008

MICKEY KAUS ON the Katrina of all Potemkin fences. Wouldn’t a Potemkin fence at least look like it was working?

February 29, 2008

MALE TEACHERS FACING a hostile workplace environment. Let the lawsuits begin!

February 29, 2008

HOWARD KURTZ: “Is Barack Obama protected by a special suit of armor–one that fits only African-Americans?”

February 29, 2008

JIM LINDGREN ON the meaning of “natural born,” a subject that seems to have confused many of the uninformed.

February 29, 2008

TOM ELIA NOTES that a recession doesn’t indicate a failure of leadership.

Nope. As Andrea See said back in 2001: “Anyone with half a brain (and did a basic class in economics) would know economies move in cycles. We’ve had the high point, now it’s time for the low. Sucks as it does, it really needs to happen.” Somebody tell our candidates.

February 29, 2008

UH OH: “Police in Las Vegas, Nevada, are investigating the discovery of the deadly poison ricin in a hotel room Thursday. . . . The discovery of ricin alarms law-enforcement agencies because authorities in several countries have investigated links between suspect extremists and ricin.”

February 29, 2008

UGH: Clinton aides threatened lawsuit over Texas caucuses, officials say.

February 29, 2008

GERARD VAN DER LEUN is worried about Obama. “I think all sane Americans of good will can agree that something happening to Obama would be just about the worst thing to happen to our political system since those three terrible days in the 1960s. The abiding problem is that not all Americans are sane — especially those of the political persuasion.”

With Gerard, I can just urge Obama’s security folks not to get slack.

February 29, 2008

DISCRIMINATION IS TERRIBLE, unless there’s money in it: “Cal Poly wants to open a male-only engineering program at a university in Saudi Arabia.” Would they have opened a whites-only engineering school in the old South Africa?

February 28, 2008

HAROLD ICKES: Blame Mark Penn. “Besides Hillary Clinton, he is the single most responsible person for this campaign.”

February 28, 2008

INTERESTING NEW POLL: Pew: Majority now believe U.S. effort in Iraq will succeed, 53-39.

Yes we can!

February 28, 2008

EVEN HARD DRIVES ARE going green.

February 28, 2008

EUGENE VOLOKH ON enjoining a mosque as a harmful public nuisance.

It’s less of a stretch than he might think — the Tennessee Supreme Court upheld an injunction against a church that practiced snake handling, despite no evidence of risk to third parties, in Tennessee ex rel. Swann v. Pack, 527 S. W. 2d 99 (Tenn. 1975) and the Supreme Court denied cert. I think that Swann was wrongly decided, but hey, I think a lot of cases are wrongly decided . . . .

February 28, 2008

FRANK J. SCORES A famous guestblogger.

February 28, 2008

POLITICO:

African-American superdelegates said Thursday that they’ll stand up against threats, intimidation and “Uncle Tom” smears rather than switch their support from Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton to Sen. Barack Obama.

“African-American superdelegates are being targeted, harassed and threatened,” said Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II (D-Mo.), a superdelegate who has supported Clinton since August. Cleaver said black superdelegates are receiving “nasty letters, phone calls, threats they’ll get an opponent, being called an Uncle Tom.

“This is the politics of the 1950s,” he complained. “A lot of members are experiencing a lot of ugly stuff. They’re not going to talk about it, but it’s happening.”

Interestingly, the original Politico headline was Black superdelegates stand up against “Uncle Tom” smears, but it now reads Black backers steadfast for Clinton.

February 28, 2008

VROOM, VROOM: Remembering the Chevy Cavalier Z24: “I fully expect to get hammered for this choice, but I sincerely can’t help it.”

UPDATE: Mike Krempasky emails: “That kicks a surprising amount of ass. Thanks for linking to carlust so much. What a great blog. Z-24? My first car. Hell yes.”

February 28, 2008

ROYAL NAVY TRAINS Russian yacht crews.

February 28, 2008

AT LAST, A CHE POSTER I CAN feel good about!

February 28, 2008

BOB GELDOF TO George W. Bush. “‘It’s called marketing. Something you obviously have no clue about or else I wouldn’t have to be here telling people your Africa story’. . . . You forget that Bush has an M.B.A. He thinks like a businessman in terms of the bottom line. Results. Profit and loss. There is an empiricism to a lot of his furthest-reaching policies on Africa. Correctly, he’s big on trade.”

February 28, 2008

MAYBE THERE’S NO REAL CONTRADICTION HERE:

The Obama campaign is rife with academic economists, according to the latest issue of The New Republic . . . . Meanwhile, according to a new L.A. Times/Bloomberg poll, people think McCain will do a better job handling the economy than Obama.

No, that’s not a knock on Obama’s economists — just on the fact that he doesn’t seem to be listening to them. When it comes to things like NAFTA, there seem to be only two possibilities. Either Obama’s anti-NAFTA talk is a ruse to fool the rubes, or his coterie of distinguished economic experts is a ruse to fool a different batch of rubes.

UPDATE: More on the NAFTA front: “The Canadian television station that reported that Obama’s campaign had assured the Canadian ambassdor that their anti-NAFTA rhetoric wasn’t serious stands by its story in the face of denials from Team Obama and the Canadian Embassy. Obama’s in a tough spot here.”

February 28, 2008

YANKEE go home.

February 28, 2008

TOM MAGUIRE ON Josh Marshall and new media standards.

February 28, 2008

OBAMA AND WITHDRAWAL: Thoughts from IraqPundit.

February 28, 2008

BOB OWENS NOTES something smelly in Iraq.

February 28, 2008

HEH: “When Hillary tells you that she has lots of experience, she doesn’t really tell you what the experience is, but you’re supposed to imagine what it must have been. She must have been sitting in the Situation Room when the Joint Chiefs of Staff were making their judgments about how to proceed in Iraq and elsewhere. . . . she’s talking about sleeping with the president for eight years as if that’s prepared her to run the country.”

February 28, 2008

PRINCE HARRY, FIGHTING IN AFGHANISTAN? Good for him, but it would have been better for him if Drudge hadn’t broken the story.

February 28, 2008

RICH KARLGAARD: Stagflation’s supply-side cure. “Is stagflation a greater concern to you than recession?”

February 28, 2008

THOUGHTS ON OBAMA, WHITE SUPREMACISTS, and the “Bradley Effect,” with a bonus report on David Duke.

February 28, 2008

LEFTY SKEPTICISM about Obama’s record.

February 28, 2008

IS THERE ANY OTHER KIND? How to set up a politicized ethnic studies department.

February 28, 2008

PROFESSOR BAINBRIDGE: “For somebody who taught Constitutional law for years, Barack Obama has an awfully odd conception of the judicial role.”

February 28, 2008

JONAH GOLDBERG’S Liberal Fascism hits number one on the New York Times bestseller list.

February 28, 2008

MEGAN MCARDLE: “I’m fascinated by the comment section to this Brad DeLong post, in which many of the commenters struggle to redefine poverty so that it excludes Cuba.”

February 28, 2008

REBUILDING AMERICA’S IMAGE IN THE WORLD (CONT’D): “Mexico and Canada yesterday voiced concerns about calls by Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, as the Democratic presidential hopefuls compete to adopt the most sceptical stance towards free trade before next week’s Ohio primary.”

Related item from Cafe Hayek: “Also distressing is the fact that Austan Goolsbee, the fine economist who is a close adviser to Obama, apparently is ignored by the would-be President of the USA on this front. Of course, I have no knowledge of what Goolsbee says and doesn’t say to Obama, but I presume that Goolsbee isn’t in the anti-trade camp.”

UPDATE: More here. “Team Obama and the Canadian Embassy are denying the report that Obama had privately assured Canada’s ambassador that his comments on NAFTA were not to be taken seriously.”

ANOTHER UPDATE: More here.

February 28, 2008

A VICTOR DAVIS HANSON INTERVIEW that’s worth reading.

February 28, 2008

STEVE CHAPMAN: Why Are These People So Ashamed of NAFTA?

February 28, 2008

THOSE LAYERS OF FACT-CHECKERS AND EDITORS AT WORK: “Maxim magazine has apologized for publishing a negative review of the Black Crowes’ new album by a writer who hadn’t listened to the whole CD. . . . A spokeswoman for the magazine contacted by The Associated Press declined to say whether the writer would face disciplinary action.” (Via Daring Fireball).

February 28, 2008

POLITICAL FEATHERBEDDING in Congress.

February 28, 2008

RALPH NADER CHOOSES A RUNNING MATE.

February 28, 2008

COMPLETE WITH GIANT PIG: A report, with photos, from the Murtha pork bash crash.

February 28, 2008

NEITHER GODS NOR GOO: Todd Seavey reports on the state of nanotechnology.

February 28, 2008

IN THE MAIL: Greg Bear’s Anvil of Stars, sequel to The Forge of God. Republished in a fancy new edition, and worth your time if you haven’t read ‘em.

February 28, 2008

JONAH GOLDBERG: “In the next few days, there will be a wave of liberals — Frank Rich comes particularly to mind — who will use WFB’s memory to beat up on today’s conservatives. . . . That said, I’m delighted to have conservative heroes become simply American heroes. But it’s at least worth pointing out that Goldwater, Reagan and, of course William F. Buckley were subjected to vicious criticism from the left in their day. That they belong to all Americans now is no small testament to their success in the face of often unrelenting opposition.”

February 28, 2008

HOW CAN WE TRUST THEM WITH ANY OF OUR TAX DOLLARS, when they can’t even build a freaking 28-mile fence?

February 28, 2008

A QUIZ, from Arnold Kling.

February 28, 2008

THE DEMOCRATS’ SOUTHERN OUTREACH PROGRAM CONTINUES, as illustrated in this email:

no shit Mccain leads democrats in TN. Like that is even a question.

Its a fucking southern red neck state. Obama or Hilary would never win that backwater hole.

we in nyc laugh at the south and think you people are pathetic.

It must be tough to think of yourself as so cosmo and still live in hell.

And when you visit NYC we sense your backwaterness. We can smell it a mile away.

With supporters like these, how can they fail to carry the south?

UPDATE: Reader Joseph Beaulieu emails: “Well, it was nice of Gov Dean to take some time out of his busy day to write to you.” Heh.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Reader Ted Siegel emails: “Lots of us here in NYC thank the south for keeping us safe and prosperous (i.e. low taxes). Unfortunately, with all of these Liberals, there’s a lot of bigotry in the city.”

Yeah, but what are you gonna do?

February 28, 2008

LIBERTARIAN NEWSPAPER PUBLISHERS for Obama.

February 28, 2008

HELLER UPDATE: “Nearly three out of four Americans — 73% — believe the Second Amendment spells out an individual right to own a firearm, according to a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll of 1,016 adults taken Feb. 8-10. Yet for decades, federal judges have seen the Constitution differently, allowing a range of gun-control measures imposed by governments seeking to curb gun violence.”

As Brannon Denning and I have noted, this suggests that finding no individual right to arms would be a blow to the Supreme Court’s legitimacy.

February 28, 2008

THE NEWSPEAK VERSION OF “Human Rights Activists.”

February 28, 2008

THIS WAS REALLY STUPID: “An armed man who burst into a classroom at Elizabeth City State University was role-playing in an emergency response drill, but neither the students nor assistant professor Jingbin Wang knew that.” The guy’s lucky that nobody shot him, or cold-cocked him. Which would have been an appropriate response to what seemed to be going on.

February 28, 2008

MORE ON THE TONY REZKO STORY and Barack Obama.

February 28, 2008

IMPORTANT THOUGHTS ON National Grammar Day. (Via Volokh).

February 28, 2008

“SAFE HOMES” IN BOSTON: It’s not about safety.

February 28, 2008

ANOTHER CBS SCANDAL? Well, it’s an election year.

February 28, 2008

JACK JACOBS, MSNBC: Obama needs a lesson in military history.

UPDATE: On the other hand, reader Paul Collacchi sends this. On the third hand, it’s from The New Republic . . . .

February 28, 2008

ROBO-DOGS: Offering the same benefits as real dogs?

February 28, 2008

DAVE KOPEL AND HOWARD NEMEROV: Is There a Relationship between Guns and Freedom? Comparative Results from 59 Nations. “The data show that (although exceptions can be found) the nations with the highest rates of gun ownership tend to have greater political and civil freedom, greater economic freedom and prosperity, and much less corruption than other nations.”

February 28, 2008

IT’S A BAD IDEA TO BREAK INTO A GUN-OWNER’S HOME: Or even a gunowner’s parent’s home, sometimes. “Dallas police were at the scene of a fatal shooting Wednesday morning in which a homeowner’s son apparently killed a suspected burglar.”

February 28, 2008

GIVING PROPER CREDIT to William Howard Taft.

February 28, 2008

A SHOCKER: Clinton’s Efforts on Ethanol Overlap Her Husband’s Interests. “Because Mr. Burkle’s Yucaipa funds are private, and the Clintons have refused to release their tax returns, details of Yucaipa’s investments and Mr. Clinton’s potential to profit from them are not publicly available.”

February 28, 2008

NEW IMAGES OF the Moon’s south polar region.

February 28, 2008

HEH:

Having the middle name Hussein doesn’t make Obama any more a Muslim than having the middle name Jefferson made Clinton a strict constructionist.

Indeed.

UPDATE: I guess Andrew Sullivan would regard this post as a “passive aggressive” defense of Obama. Actually, of course, he’s just as clueless as ever.