Roger L. Simon

Long Live Long Beach (Airport)!

It’s no longer a secret that anyone traveling from or to Southern California has a much easier time of it at Long Beach Airport than they do at the dreaded LAX. I’m at LBG right now, enjoying their free Wi-Fi after having left my car with the valet (a luxury I am allowing myself because of my recent operation) and zipped through the security check-in, which has barely any line. There’s a retro element of flying in the 1940s at this airport that gives it some charm, a rarity these days.

Not to feel too relaxed, I noticed the link to this morning’s Syria coverage in the NYT on LGF. It seems the Times is being used here again in the ongoing battle within our own government. Those unsourced comments are getting pretty tired. People accuse blogs of being biased, but what is the selection of an unnamed “diplomat” as an authority on something? In some ways you might as well choose your Uncle Sid. This is not to say that there isn’t a huge conflict going on about what to do about Hezbollah. How could there not be? But I am not impressed with this form of journalism.

UPDATE BEFORE FLYING: John Derbyshire has an interesting article today in which he asks whether exuberance over current democracy gains is “irrational” and concludes (tentatively) that it is not. He also writes the following:

The antiwar folk have been hit hardest, of course. It’s hard to say which faction is suffering the greater mental anguish right now: the Left, domestic and foreign, for whom George W. Bush is merely a willing tool of sinister “interests” (there are no actual human beings in the lefty world-view, only Interests, Classes, Minorities, and Historical Forces), or the paleo-Right, for whom Bush is the dupe of wily Sharonists and ideological globalizers.

Personally I feel more sorry for the paleos, largely because I count several of them as friends, and am a bit that way inclined myself. Paleos (trust me here) are mostly very nice people, who are just afflicted with mild romantic tendencies — sentimental fantasies of the old Jeffersonian farmer-republic financed from customs duties or of a time in which there were lots of well-paid jobs not requiring a sheaf of college degrees. We all have our dreams, and the paleo dream is not at all an ignoble one.

It should be no surprise I’m not nearly as sympathetic to the paleos as John. We live in a peanut-sized (make that a grain of sand-sized) planet in a giant universe. Anyone who thinks we’re all not in this together – Americans, Syrians and Thais – is living very far in the past. I guess that makes me a globalist.