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Monthly Archives: August 2002

Guest Blogger

August 23rd, 2002 - 10:01 am

I don’t normally post essays by others, but Claire Berlinski deserves to have this published somewhere.

by Claire Berlinksi


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Friday Recipe

August 23rd, 2002 - 1:08 am

This week’s recipe is

Steve’s London Broil Marinade

You’ll need:

A good-sized London broil. (Two pounds or so)
A cup of red wine vinegar.
Four cloves of garlic, peeled and minced.
The juice of four lemons.
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce.
Lawry’s Lemon Pepper.
6 tablespoons (maybe more) country mustard.
A large, flat Tupperware container, or gallon Ziploc bag.

Lay the meat flat in a casserole dish, or in the big Tupperware container. Pour on 1/2 cup of red wine vinegar. Cover the up side with Lemon Pepper. With a fork, rub in half the garlic. Now pour on half the Worcestershire (Lea & Perrins only) and the juice of two of the lemons. Slather on country mustard until completely covered.

Put in the fridge for a few hours, then flip the steak over and repeat the process on the other side. Refrigerate for a few more hours. Flip the steak every 4-6 hours or so, for at least a full day.

If you have a giant Ziploc bag, then throw the steak and all the ingredients in at once. Zip the bag shut around a drinking straw, and suck out any air. Carefully remove the straw and finish zipping up the bag. Shake well and refrigerate for at least six hours. 24 hours would be better. 48 would really, really rock.

Grill on charcoal (or, as a second choice, broil) until rare to medium rare. Let stand ten minutes, then slice very thin and on the diagonal. Serve with cold pasta, french fries, a garden salad with a fruit vineagrette, and a great big glass of cheap, young Zinfandel.

Best part? The next day, put any leftover slices on seven grain bread for the best damn sandwich you’ll ever taste.

NEXT WEEK: Bill Macon’s Salt Steak.

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Better Than “Cats”

August 23rd, 2002 - 12:14 am

Steven Den Beste forwarded something to me, explaining that it “looks more like your kind of thing than mine.”

Boy, is it.

A few years ago, some smarty-pants college professor fooled a bunch of stupid college professors, by publishing a bunch of PC-babble gibberish (quite literally, gibberish) and getting it praised by his collegues.

The good folks at The Daily Sedative have done something similar with this wicked parody of left-liberal columnists.

It isn’t important to think about it, but I think it’s safe to assume that they understand us. They must understand us. We’re us. After all, I am writing this editorial, and I think I understand us, so so should they.

But really, we inundate them with Western products like Coca-Cola and Levi’s Jeans. We all know they are perfectly capable of understanding our culture based on inferences made on those exports. “Our culture is our biggest export,” you know? It’s a fact.

But let’s not worry about that. We are the ones with the tanks and fighter planes, so obviously we are the ones who must do the understanding.

There’s more. Hysterically more. Check it out.

NOTE: Other features on TDS include a discussion with Hitler about bin Laden, John Ashcroft as a crusading anti-Christ, and Desert Storm showing in reruns. I’ve bookmarked the site already, and so should you.

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Completely Fuerthless

August 23rd, 2002 - 12:06 am

As regular readers know, this site isn

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If Jews Write Checks/You Must Vote Majette

August 23rd, 2002 - 12:04 am

Just kidding there in the headline. Johnny Cochran didn

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What Needs To Be Said

August 22nd, 2002 - 6:25 pm

From BigWig at Silfray Hraka:

This is America, so David Duke is allowed to say whatever insane venom comes to his mind. And when when he does open up the shithole he calls a mouth, we publicly reject him. Whether they think racist thoughts or not, white politicians aren’t allowed to openly spout racist hatred, and when they do, they get a good smacking, and their career is over. You know why? Because, when it comes down to it, we expect better things from a white person.

To allow Representative McKinney to say what he said about Jews without publicly punishing him in the same manner as we punish David Duke is to hold the same attitudes the ranch hands held in Of Mice and Men. No one who is not a racist would tell him to his face that he’s just an ignorant nigger, but to let his anti-Semitic ravings go by without a word is to treat him like one. Until all of us demand the same standards of behavior from black politicians that we demand from white politicians, we will still be judging people on the color of their skin, and not on the content of their character.

I didn’t bother with that part of the McKinney story for the same reason I never bothered with Duke, and stopped bothering with Pat Buchanan during Desert Shield: Simple antisemitism is usually best ignored.

But we know that’s excuse doesn’t work for the media, who (quite rightly) pounce on right wing nutcases at every opportunity.

So why did Bill McKinney get a by on this?

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Passive Aggression

August 22nd, 2002 - 1:11 pm

I bought the Frequent Flyer Pack.

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Can’t Win for Losing

August 22nd, 2002 - 12:48 pm

Found this happy item while trolling the Guardian for some piping fresh outrage:

The United States government has said it wants to see President Robert Mugabe removed from power and that it is working with the Zimbabwean opposition to bring about a change of administration.

The trouble, of course, with regime change in some sub-Saharan African states is that the new guys are often worse than the old guys. Think of Angola, Congo/Zaire/Congo, or even what has become of Zimbabwe. The good news is, there’s damn little chance that anyone could be worse than Mugabe, even if the new leader turns out to be a hyperactive, knife-wielding pack of ferrets.

The other trouble, of course, is how long will it be before the US is accused — by the very same Guardian reporter — of trying to force Zimbabwe back to its white-ruled days as Rhodesia?

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August 22nd, 2002 - 12:31 pm

Switching from Blogspot to my own domain (thanks, Stacy!) back in May killed my Google ranking.

Now, thanks to lots of links, hits, and general public oafishness, I’m once again the first Stephen Green result.

But only #23 for “Vodka?” I’d better pick up the pace — and I don’t mean blogging.

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Return of Gunga Dan

August 22nd, 2002 - 12:09 pm

Rather Biased is back.

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Full Frontal Fisking

August 22nd, 2002 - 12:06 pm

I left Mary McRory alone today because I figured Juan Gato would do it better.

He did.

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Sea Story

August 22nd, 2002 - 12:00 pm

Someone wrote to suggest that we rename the Defense Department the Department of War, just like it was in the good old days.

I don’t mean to be mean, but that’s the million and sixth time I’ve heard the idea. And it’s not going to happen. Not ever.

Here’s why.

Before 1947, we had two cabinet-level military departments. The same law that divorced the Air Force from the Army gave us the new, united Department of Defense.

Before then, the Secretary of War (even in times of peace) was the cabinet officer in charge of the Army. The Secretary of the Navy was the cabinet officer in charge of — you guessed it — the Navy.

Department of War was the Army. The Department of the Navy was the Navy. And never the twain shall meet. Well, not until a forced introduction by Truman and Congress after WWII. Rather than create a third cabinet bureaucracy for the new Air Force, all three got mushed together in the Defense Department.

Now then, pretend you’re a Navy Admiral, serving today on the Joint Chiefs of Staff. You represent, to the President, to Congress, to your nation, a service with over 200 years of proud, independent tradition. Your service is so independent, you even get your own, private mini army — the Marine Corps.

You, and all your predecessors, have spent your careers defending your traditions, your fleets, your acquisitions, and your budget from Army encroachments. And now some joker wants to come along and re-name the department you serve under with an Army name?

The word that should pop into your head right now isn’t mutiny, it’s barratry. We’d have our entire Naval Officer Corps in full revolt within minutes.

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August 22nd, 2002 - 11:37 am

Suicide at the NYT. Drudge has the headline, story to follow shortly.

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Bring Out Your Dead

August 22nd, 2002 - 11:30 am

Hawk Girl Emily Jones would much prefer it if Jerry Garcia would please kindly just stay dead.

Em, I lived in Humboldt then, too. And it was ugly.

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Too Scary To Be Funny

August 22nd, 2002 - 11:09 am

Apparently, a real martinet is in charge of our men and women in Afghanistan.

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Josh, Josh Is Wrong About War, War

August 22nd, 2002 - 11:02 am

Josh Marshall is wrong on Kissenger — but he makes too good a case to be ignored:

If you read the Kissinger piece and the Times article and you understand the terms of the debate you cannot help but conclude that the Times characterization of what Kissinger said is vastly more accurate than the characterization being peddled by conservative Iraq-hawks. In the Iraq debate, the attitude toward inspections is fundamental. The administration line — emanating from the Pentagon and the Office of the Vice President — doesn’t believe in them at all. Neither tactically nor strategically. The fact that Kissinger says we should start by “propos[ing] a stringent inspection system that achieves substantial transparency of Iraqi institutions” makes him, by definition, a critic of administration policy on a fundamental point.

Here’s the relevent graf from Kissinger’s piece:

For this reason, the objective of regime change should be subordinated in American declaratory policy to the need to eliminate weapons of mass destruction from Iraq as required by the U.N. resolutions. The restoration of the inspection system existing before its expulsion by Saddam is clearly inadequate. It is necessary to propose a stringent inspection system that achieves substantial transparency of Iraqi institutions. Since the consequences of simply letting the diplomacy run into the ground are so serious, a time limit should be set. The case for military intervention will then have been made in the context of seeking a common approach.

Kissinger cleary means for the Administration to make merely a pro forma argument for stricter inspections — which Saddam will clearly not agree to. That proposal/rejection, plus the Administration making a public case for war, are clearly all that are needed to start war.

How that is seriously at odds with Administration plans, or Charles Krauthammer‘s column on Sunday, Marshall never makes clear. His case for the NYT position gets weaker when you read this earlier graf:

But the terrorist threat transcends the nation-state; it derives in large part from transnational groups that, if they acquire weapons of mass destruction, could inflict catastrophic, even irretrievable, damage. That threat is compounded when these weapons are being built in direct violation of U.N. resolutions by a ruthless autocrat who sought to annex one of his neighbors and attacked another, with a demonstrated record of hostility toward America and the existing international system. The case is all the stronger because Saddam expelled U.N. inspectors installed as part of the settlement of the Persian Gulf War and has used these weapons both against his own population and against a foreign adversary.

This is why policies that deterred the Soviet Union for 50 years are unlikely to work against Iraq’s capacity to cooperate with terrorist groups.

Boom, right there, Kissinger makes the convincing case for war. Not sanctions, not tightened inspections, but war.

Kissinger has no major problems with Administration policy — he’d just like them to be more public about it (so would I), and for the White House to do a short Appeasement Dance for our EU allies’ pleasure.

Krauthammer was right. The New York Times was wrong. And so is Josh Marshall.

NOTE: Josh, no link to the originial NYT piece that so mistated Kissinger’s position? That’s not kosher. I’d provide the link, but the NYT‘s search function keeps giving me a blank page. Anyone have the link?

UPDATE: At last, here’s the link to that deceitful NYT front page story by Todd Purdum and Patrick Tyler. Read it and judge for yourself.

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I Told You Never to Call Me Here

August 22nd, 2002 - 10:42 am

Jim Dunnigan‘s latest on Saudi Arabia helps support by Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Theory from earlier today.

The Saudis will, he said, continue to muddle and compromise their way through complicated relations with the outside world. And to them, the outside world is very, very outside.

Check it out.

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Facts of Life

August 22nd, 2002 - 10:32 am

I’m about to get in trouble with my fighter pilot father-in-law, but here are the facts:

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Big Fun Down Under

August 22nd, 2002 - 10:15 am

Sometimes Tim Blair, through every fault of his own, reminds me why I have to hate him sometimes:

I have a Honda S2000 test car that I’ll drive to Canberra and back this afternoon, with the roof down, Warren Zevon loaded into the CD stacker, and a cool redhead in the passenger seat.

Adding insult to injury (or rubbing salt on the margarita glass, as I like to say), word is that Blair’s liver can take more abuse than even mine.

Lucky bastard!

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Go, I Say, Go Away, Boy, You Bother Me!

August 22nd, 2002 - 10:10 am

Fritz Schrank has better plans for using the voice of James Carville in a cartoon.

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Vote Early, Vote Often

August 22nd, 2002 - 10:05 am

Six new reviews, including the new Clancy, are up at Amazon.

What can I say? I got ambitious on Monday.

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Department of (In)Justice

August 22nd, 2002 - 9:57 am

There’s a huge pissing contest going on between the Justice Department and the House Judiciary committee.

The House wants Ashcroft to share some nasty data he’s collected on us through bookstores and libraries. Naturally, Ashcroft refuses.

And Eric Olsen scooped us all in getting the story. Click over for the chilling details.

UPDATE: Talk Left has even more on the story.

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Following the Law

August 22nd, 2002 - 9:51 am

Those smart kids of OxBlog are finally back with the Immutable Laws of Dowd.

Yours truly came up with the 4th Law of Dowd — “it’s better to be cute than coherent.” That’s especially true in her most recent column. Check it out.

NOTE: Oh, yeah. The Sixth Law, too. “It is usually possible and always desirable to name-drop and name-call in the same sentence.”

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Said the Spider to the Fly

August 22nd, 2002 - 12:38 am

This from Arab News:

Iraqi Vice President Taha Yasin Ramadan yesterday called on Saudi Arabia to resume diplomatic relations with his country. He also commended the growing trade relations between the two countries in recent years. “Iraq is willing to restore full diplomatic relations any time Riyadh chooses,” Ramadan told Asharq Al-Awsat.

In an almost totally unrelated story, Jimmy

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Whole Earth Day

August 22nd, 2002 - 12:34 am

Reason‘s Ronald Bailey presents a preliminary report on the upcoming UN attempt to impoverish and enslave you.

The WSSD is a followup to the Earth Summit held in Rio de Janeiro 10 years ago. At that gathering, world leaders negotiated and adopted the Framework Convention on Climate Change (FCCC) and the Convention on Biological Diversity (CDB), among other treaties. The fearful truth is that once a UN treaty process or agency has been launched, it continues to grow and mutate, but is always aiming to increase the power of international bureaucracies and national governments at the expense of individuals.

Am I guilty of hyporbole? Is Bailey? Sure — but only in the short term. Read the whole thing.

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August 22nd, 2002 - 12:30 am

Over at Slate, Robert Shapiro explains how ’90s US growth and Japanese decline are both due, in part, to Information Technology.

And you know what? He’s makes a fine point.

Throughout the ’80s, many Americans envied Japan its technological prowess, but there is a strong case that Japan’s IT weakness magnified its slow growth and weak productivity gains in the ’90s. One of Japan’s top economists, Rizaburo Nezu of the Fujitsu Research Institute, has recently documented the various and complex ways in which, less than a generation after Japanese firms pioneered the miniaturization and marketing of electronics, Japan has “disappeared from world IT competition.”

Let’s not forget other, equally vital, differences. Despite recently revealed flaws, the US still has much more transparent corporations, those corporations are still much more in thrall to their shareholders, and our goverment is (yes, even during Clinton) much more responsible, flexible, and coherent.

Anyway, read Shapiro’s analysis. It’s good work.

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Sand Dollars

August 22nd, 2002 - 12:23 am

The Financial Times worries about the flight of Saudi oil dollars to Europe:

“Watch for Middle Eastern asset switches out of US dollars into the euro,” UBS Warburg’s London-based fixed-income team advised in its daily note. “If a trickle becomes a flood, it could force the spread [of US Treasuries to German bonds] wider in double-quick time.”

David Brown, chief European economist at Bear Stearns, said if Saudi holdings in the US were cut drastically and in a very short time, “there could be an influence on the dollar”.

That last line explains why I

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August 22nd, 2002 - 12:18 am

That David Warren column I quoted yesterday is now online.

Sorry for the scoop-without-a-link. Let’s just say it doesn’t suck to be me.

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August 22nd, 2002 - 12:16 am

John Fund looks at the Barr and McKinney races, and isn

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The Times, They Aren

August 22nd, 2002 - 12:14 am

Bill Safire joins the growing chorus singing the damnation of Saddam Hussein. First, we have evidence of Saddam

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