Monthly Archives: July 2007

I am alleging this . . .

Everything’s alleged these days, as newspapers try to be even-handed but are ham-handed instead.  But Terry Armour on Comcast sports just spoke of “alleged dogfighting allegations” regarding NFL star Michael Vick.  That’s what I call being cautious.

UpdateIt’s catching.  Reader B. reports that an hour later, a woman on CNN said much the same thing.  Or so Reader B. alleges.

Good call on “homeland”

From Hit and Run, Reason Mag’s staff blog, “What Does ‘Homeland’ Mean to You?”: Listener complained on NPR about use of “protecting the homeland.”

I wasn’t alive during World War II, but I associate “the homeland” with Nazi propaganda. It’s fascistic and offensive.

Better to say “U.S” or “America,” she said.

For science writer Ron Bailey,

the word “homeland” conjures a kind of antediluvian primitive nationalism (tribalism) based on blood and soil, not a people united by their devotion to political ideals like liberty and free speech.

Not enough is made of this volk culture that led Germans to the national-socialism trough.  Comments on the blog include favoring “domestic” instead.  Opposing it to what, however?  Defending or protecting America is the point.

Salvaging the Iraq War

This is not original with Daniel Pipes, but I can’t imagine it being argued more cogently:

Two positions dominate and polarize the American body politic today. Some say the war is lost, so leave Iraq. Others say the war can be won, so keep the troops in place.

I split the difference and offer a third route. The occupation is lost but the war can be won. Keep U.S. troops in Iraq but remove them from the cities.

Etc.

That Republican lawyer again

The publisher’s wife can’t let that story go, about the Republican who became a Dem because of GW.  Today she surrenders almost her whole column to the fellow.

He speaks of “this blog,” whose funding he intends to investigate.  Egad, is that me?

But not before he checks out his $2,000 contribution, which he thinks was from his two partners and him and so was only $667.67 but hasn’t had time yet. 

Did Hunter wait until he did check it before surrendering her space to him today?  It appears she did not.

Did she ask him what blog he’s talking about?  Apparently not.

What a team they make.  Of course, the issue is her professionalism and reliability, rather than touchy Republicans.

Later: Boy, am I the uninformed egotist.  Bloggers have been all over this lady.  See here, where Google has page one of 40–plus pages where she is mentioned.

Burning questions

1. Why do violent-crime stories always emphasize the victim and not the culprit?  They usually know the victim right off, but the culprit only later, if ever.  But the culprit is usually more interesting.  We want to know who the s.o.b. is, where he lives, what else he’s done.  We are often told this, but rarely are regaled with detailed accounts such as we commonly read about victims.

2. What’s to keep a cranky person more or less in line? 

A head-trip mass on Sunday with bad music and holy reverie interrupted by vaious handshaking and eye contact with priest at makeshift altar who mimics Johnny Carson (or Leno or Letterman) with wireless mike on neck for sermon and intersperses rubrics with his own personalized comments? 

Or a tried and true Catholic traditional mass with bells, book, candle and quietude normally associated with dwelling on and trembling and/or delighting in God’s presence?

3. What’s this separate but equal approach in the Sun-Times, with Mitchell column for blacks and Cepeda for Spanish-ethnic?  Word is, do not look for nuances in either place.

Patience is not always a virtue . . .

For the past few days, since a news story of mine was published on Monday, I have been bombarded with dozens of daily e-mails from Republicans calling me a liar, demanding I be fired, and insisting on a retraction.

Says the publisher’s wife Jennifer about her incredible boo-boo including willingness to believe a trial lawyer in matters political.

Actually, the dozens of e-mails sound rather reasonable to me.  As Cicero said to Catline the conspirator, how long, how long will you abuse our patience, O Sun-Times publisher and wife.  How long?

She’s defensive to beat all, blaming her editor, who “took a small part of [her] story and made it into a headline.” 

She means the editor (correctly) rewrote her lede, she having buried it?  Here’s what the story had:

After watching the top five Democratic candidates for president speak before a trial lawyers’ group Sunday, attorney Jim Ronca of Philadelphia, a staunch Republican, became certain of one thing: He is not going to vote Republican in the 2008 presidential election.

But that’s what editors do, she explains:

Reporters don’t write headlines, editors do. And they want to write something catchy so readers will read the darned story.

But that’s your story they’re trying to scare up readers for, lady. 

She also explains how readers should have read the story:

The story was not about the GOP lawyer; it was about the speeches five Democratic presidential candidates gave to a convention of trial lawyers.  . . . .  As reporters usually do, I asked two attendees after the session what they thought about the speeches.

See?  And one of those guys misled her.  Nasty fellow.  How was she to know?

Was she to look it up?  Not to mention the city desk or whatever it’s called now, where eye-shaded, hard-hearted editors have been known to take an adversary position to what comes across their screen.  For the publisher’s wife?  Are you kidding?

Tony, we hardly knew you . . .

Here’s a view of Tony Blair that may be unfamiliar to most of us:

Throughout his years in office, he kept inviolable his belief in the existence of a purely beneficent essence of himself, a belief so strong that no quantity of untruthfulness, shady dealings, unscrupulousness, or constitutional impropriety could undermine or destroy it. Having come into the world marked by Original Virtue, Mr. Blair was also a natural-born preacher.

Reflecting psychobabble, “the modern tendency to indulge in self-obsession without self-examination,” he asked forgiveness in a final address:

Bless me, people (Mr. Blair appeared to be saying), for I have sinned: but please don’t ask me to say how.

Etc., by the pseudonymous Theodore Dalrymple, a physician, contributing editor of City Journal, and Dietrich Weismann Fellow at the Manhattan Institute, whose thinking is said to have been adopted by Rudy Guiliani. 

Publisher’s wife again . . .

Following up on our biting commentary and lid-blowing reportage on the publisher’s wife Jennifer as O’Bama sycophant disguised as Sun-Times reporter — old news, said two readers, one-two — we have this from [Wall St.] Opinion Journal:

Her 7/16 story, “GOP lawyer sold on Dems,” tells of a “staunch Republican” who is “not only going to vote Democratic, [but is] going to financially support the Democrats” in 2008, having found Republicans “an embarrassment.”

But since 2000, staunch as he is, this guy has given $6,750 to Democrats, but only $750 to Republicans, OJ’s James Taranto reports, “and his most recent GOP donation was three elections ago.”

Now isn’t that something a publisher’s wife would have looked up, or did she never learn fact-checking at Chicago’s City News Bureau, where legendarily not even one’s mother was above suspicion? 

Jennifer got suckered, as did those who assume she knows what she’s talking about.  Do hubbies fire wives, even if they hire them?

Wuxtry, reporter sleeps with boss!

Jennifer Hunter, the Sun-Times shill for B. O’Bama, the smiling Irishman running for prexy, is the publisher’s wife!  I just read it at The Beachwood Reporter, where she is billed as “Obama Puppet”:

Jennifer Hunter, the publisher’s wife who doubles as Barack Obama’s personal columnist at the Sun-Times, wonders today if Obama can end “centuries” of corruption in American politics.

Yes, is he that great a man?!

For a dozen other references to back up the assertion, which for that matter has been denied neither by her nor her publisher husband — and isn’t that nice, that he thinks of her? — but still calls for support by citation, look at what Barney Google says about it.

SPOOKED BY SPOOKS

The CIA’s “’estimates’ have always been inherently political documents, and its executive summaries are written to be leaked,” says Angelo M. Codevilla in a review of George Tenet’s At the Center of the Storm: My Years at the CIA (HarperCollins) and John Prados’s Safe For Democracy: The Secret Wars of the CIA (Ivan R. Dee) in Claremont Review of Books, Summer, ‘07.

Prados’s title, says Codevilla, “masks the Left’s perennial agenda of encouraging its own ends by depriving America of coercive means.”

He calls “transparent projection” Prados’s contention that in the Truman years the U.S. “cheapened the coin of its appeal by covert actions that, to foreign populations, did not represent American policies democratically arrived at.”

The reader is supposed to believe that foreigners-none of whom, including the British, have any say in their countries’ foreign policies-look askance at America because not all the details of its foreign policies are decided “democratically.”

This is too much for Codevilla, a Boston U. international relations teacher, who notes that “these very foreigners . . . are supposedly shocked that Americans do not live in perfect equality and sometimes speak unkindly about one another. It is clear enough that Prados is expressing his own judgment on America, not that of any foreigners.”

Having it in for the U.S., he assumes others do too.

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