Best of Both WorldsJust Axin'* Why did our TV schedule Thursday nigh... (10.12.2005, 02:44 UTC)
Just Axin'* Why did our TV schedule Thursday night promise Jake Gyllenhaal on Jon Stewart and Andrew Sullivan on Colbert and instead we got Ken Auletta and Peggy Noonan, respectively? *other possible headlines included "Has shooting already begun on Bareback Mountain?"
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Best of Both WorldsBono and the Professor Bono's credentials with th... (9.12.2005, 05:20 UTC)
Bono and the Professor Bono's credentials with the Vast Rightwing Conspiracy have held up remarkably well, due not least to his careful avoidance of partisan politics in the US. But the esteem is fraying. A couple of weeks ago the Wall Street Journal online was trafficking a story about Bono having a hat flown at a cost of nearly $2000 from London to Italy and Friday's print edition lumps him in with Jeffrey Sachs of the UN for wanting to hold Africa to low standards in terms of corruption ...
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Best of Both WorldsRead Subheadings With Care When one goes to the W... (8.12.2005, 20:51 UTC)
Read Subheadings With Care When one goes to the Wall Street Journal opinion page and sees Peggy Noonan What does it mean that your first act on entering a country is breaking its laws? one may naively think that Peggy could be referring to the CIA rendition flights, which break the laws of the European countries where they land. But No. She's talking about illegal immigration.
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Best of Both WorldsThis is a love song As its reign as Time magazine... (8.12.2005, 15:26 UTC)
This is a love song As its reign as Time magazine's Blog of the Year comes to an end, Powerline produces the most embarrassingly sycophantic post, ever. It's about Scott's ["Trunk"] trip to the White House Hannukah party: An evening to remember ... Thinking it was junk mail, I almost threw it out, until I noticed that my name and address on the envelope were handwritten. Inside was the invitation to the White House Hannukah reception held yesterday evening ... Upon admission to the White H...
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Best of Both WorldsA uniter not a divider The Wall Street Journal Eu... (8.12.2005, 05:29 UTC)
A uniter not a divider The Wall Street Journal Europe (subs. req'd) claims to be unimpressed with new Conservative Party leader David Cameron: "Pardon us for not joining the David Cameron love-fest just yet ... Mr. Blair, however, wasted no time in branding the Cameron era as the "new consensus" -- a mocking reference to the "socialist consensus" that another Tory leader, Ted Heath, embraced in the 1970s. Repeating that history is in no one's interests, certainly not the Tories'." But there ...
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Best of Both WorldsAdvice Jacques Chirac can ignore A few weeks ago,... (7.12.2005, 05:41 UTC)
Advice Jacques Chirac can ignore A few weeks ago, the American right was unanimous that the French riots reflected the inevitable doom of Europe due to its morphing into Eurabia. Now the Wall Street Journal (free link with reg.) offers a new diagnosis -- not enough torture: The danger here [outrage towards Condi] is less to America -- which will continue to protect itself in any case -- than it is to Europe. The phony outrage over American anti-terror practices will only make it harder for ...
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Best of Both WorldsOf that ilk Given the incompetence of the Global ... (7.12.2005, 03:42 UTC)
Of that ilk Given the incompetence of the Global War on Terror, it's not inconceivable that the reason the unfortunate Khaled al-Masri -- the German citizen kidnapped in Macedonia and tortured in Afghanistan -- came to the attention of the American authorities is that he shares a surname with members of the GWOT rogues gallery -- the loony cleric Abu Hamza, and the Abu Hafs al-Masri Brigades. The latter being the group that endorsed George W. Bush for president last year. One minor problem ...
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Best of Both WorldsEvidence of the Intelligent Designer? Or is the s... (6.12.2005, 21:20 UTC)
Evidence of the Intelligent Designer? Or is the similarity of this image from today's science section of the New York Times (digitally viewable here) to a classic masterwork merely a sign of His support for stem cell research?
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Best of Both WorldsProdigal sons We admit to having hit a bit of a b... (6.12.2005, 04:19 UTC)
Prodigal sons We admit to having hit a bit of a blogging rut so while the batteries get recharged, a couple of incidental musings. We've done a few Pete Doherty posts recently and we thought of him again last night while listening to the ... er .. highlights of a bizarre debate in the House of Lords about that vile weed, bracken. One Lord (who we think was a Labour peer) was singing the praises of it, listing one benefit after another, and towards the end of the impressive list, at least on...
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Best of Both WorldsBeer Longtime readers will know of our interest i... (5.12.2005, 05:40 UTC)
BeerLongtime readers will know of our interest in (and dubious attitude to) the marketing strategies of multinational alcohol conglomerates. So we suppose it's somewhat refreshing to read (in the Wall Street Journal, subs. req'd) about a chief executive of one such company who admits to not understanding why consumers like one of his products; the company being Scottish and Newcastle and the product being Foster's Super Chilled (they own the European rights):And the brewer whose identity was on...
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Best of Both WorldsGuinness is good for you* *If the alternative is ... (3.12.2005, 04:01 UTC)
Guinness is good for you* *If the alternative is cocaine. Shane McGowan explains it to Pete Doherty. [We also thought about the caption "Lose your teeth. Save your brain."]
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Best of Both WorldsThey saw him coming It was unfortunate timing tha... (2.12.2005, 04:22 UTC)
They saw him coming It was unfortunate timing that the Republic of Ireland's foreign minister, a purveyor of half-baked Bushisms, was meeting Condi Rice on the day that an awkward article ran in the New York Times: A recent analysis done for The New York Times of 26 planes known to be operated by C.I.A. companies shows 307 flights in Europe since September 2001. The information was culled from Federal Aviation Administration data, aviation industry sources and, to a lesser extent, a network ...
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Best of Both WorldsMore dodgy stuff at Shannon Why is the US militar... (1.12.2005, 20:15 UTC)
More dodgy stuff at Shannon Why is the US military shipping helium from the US to Iraq? This emerged from yet another genre of stopover at the "neutral" Republic of Ireland's Shannon airport today: [RTE] The US Embassy has confirmed that a US military aircraft, which made an emergency landing at Shannon Airport this morning, was carrying helium gas bound for Iraq. The C-17 transport plane had to divert to Shannon airport when it developed hydraulic and brake problems. The gas is contained i...
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Best of Both WorldsDepartment of interesting excuses 1. Pete Doherty... (1.12.2005, 05:02 UTC)
Department of interesting excuses 1. Pete Doherty, explaining his arrest for possession of crack cocaine to The Sun: Speaking of his drugs arrest, the singer added: “Me and The Wolfman (a song-writing partner) were off to bury the stuff by my grandfather’s grave in West London — to draw a line under our drug-taking days. “We were just unlucky to get pulled over. Kate [Moss] doesn’t know I have been arrested and only got out of the nick at 6am.” 2. Conra...
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Best of Both WorldsVictory is simply a question of dates Those relyi... (30.11.2005, 17:56 UTC)
Victory is simply a question of dates Those relying on the farcically redesigned Pajamas Media for their summary of President Bush's newly announced strategy for victory in a war that began in 2003 will read: and the White House earlier today declassified a document describing that strategy circa 2003. The 38 page document is here: Strategy for Victory (2003). Now the double references to 2003 are a bit suspicious, not least because the White House surely belatedly realized that they ha...
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Best of Both WorldsDon't tell them in Michigan Wednesday's Wall Stre... (30.11.2005, 05:07 UTC)
Don't tell them in Michigan Wednesday's Wall Street Journal (subs. req'd) has an interesting story on how General Motors is bravely planning on increased non-US sales of the "smallest" of its Hummer 4WD vehicles, the H3. Brave because a time of increased concern about global warming, oil prices, and George Bush's militarism would not seem to be a good time to be selling a teens-MPG behemoth that draws on a US military design. But the marketers have a plan -- to convince purchasers that it r...
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Best of Both WorldsThis just in: New Harper's editor also a mime! O... (29.11.2005, 13:58 UTC)
This just in: New Harper's editor also a mime! Or at least, along with his agility with "cattle, sheep and a gun," Roger D. Hodge seems to be able to lean passionately on thin air.
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Best of Both WorldsSources are for suckers Mort Zuckerman, editor-in... (28.11.2005, 16:27 UTC)
Sources are for suckers Mort Zuckerman, editor-in-chief of US News and World Report, uses his proprietorial spot in the magazine to discussing this new fangled blogging thingy: Given the fact that the disseminators of blogs, such as Google, have a unique protection from legal liability for what is posted, the blogs often resort to blood sport in their commentaries on politics and life, with many repeating and reporting without fact checking. (Alas, the idea that Jews plotted the 9/11 attacks...
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Best of Both WorldsWinston off the hook Seemingly tiring of comparis... (28.11.2005, 04:36 UTC)
Winston off the hookSeemingly tiring of comparisons of George W. Bush with Winston Churchill, the American Right spent Sunday exulting in a new comparison: Bush and Napoleon. We already knew that they had killed irony but now they're dancing on its grave. They're sourcing the analogy to a James Hoagland column in the Washington Post, which in turn relies on a quote from an Egyptian -- but hey, that's better sourcing than they ever had for their WMD hype. So --National Review's The Corner: Mus...
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Best of Both WorldsOf Irish Interest Quick notes on what New York Ti... (27.11.2005, 22:38 UTC)
Of Irish Interest Quick notes on what New York Times readers read about Ireland in the last couple of days. Friday's papers saw "Donabate Journal," a report on the perilous state of the craft of thatching in Ireland, with a bunch of quotes from a cottage owner in the town and a thatcher working on it. Two indices of the trouble -- both the raw materials and the skills often have to be imported -- the latter from Britain: In contrast to Ireland, Britain saved its thatched roofs through aggr...
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Best of Both WorldsPersuasion In one of the Telegraph accounts of th... (26.11.2005, 00:58 UTC)
PersuasionIn one of the Telegraph accounts of the life of George Best, found via Backword, one anecdote goes:By now, though, Best's bedroom and bar room capers were seriously encroaching on his football. He missed training sessions, and in 1971 failed to turn up for a tie with Chelsea, instead going on a date with the Irish actress Sinead Cusack.Since it's fun to look at the pictures of these celebrities in their swinging 1960s/1970s days (although Sinead still cuts a respectable figure as a fin...
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Best of Both WorldsGeorge Best versus Irish Ferries A couple of mont... (25.11.2005, 17:15 UTC)
George Best versus Irish Ferries A couple of months ago we posted about labour disputes on ferry companies in Ireland and France; while the French dispute had flared up more spectacularly at that time, we figured that the Irish dispute was ultimately more troublesome for the government because of its interaction with national wage agreements. And so today, not yet going as far as the Corsican sailors (who "hijacked" their ship), Irish sailors have barricaded themselves in the bridges of two...
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Best of Both WorldsDon't mention the GWOT Right before leaving for h... (25.11.2005, 00:14 UTC)
Don't mention the GWOT Right before leaving for his Thanksgiving vacation at his "ranch" in Texas, the White House website popped up this announcement: President Bush will meet with the Chancellor of the Republic of Austria, Wolfgang Schuessel, at the White House on December 8, 2005. The President looks forward to discussing the Chancellor's upcoming Presidency of the European Council and the way ahead for transatlantic cooperation. Which is interesting timing because it seems that Austria,...
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Best of Both WorldsBlame Canada Should an enterprising blogger beyon... (24.11.2005, 02:56 UTC)
Blame CanadaShould an enterprising blogger beyond the reach of the Official Secrets Act decide to publish the contents of the classified British memo that underlie the claims that George Bush wanted to bomb al Jazeera headquarters in Qatar, there is a precedent that will ensure that this blogger receives enthusiastic support from the Right: their embrace of "Captain Ed" when he published secret Canadian documents that embarrassed the Canadian government. For instance, Glenn Reynolds offered his...
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Best of Both WorldsSarcasm without facts Christopher Hitchens shows ... (23.11.2005, 05:28 UTC)
Sarcasm without factsChristopher Hitchens shows how it's done, participating via his latest piece for Slate in the War on Murtha:Even Rep. Murtha glimpses his own double-standard futility, however dimly, when he calls for U.S. forces to be based just "over the horizon" in case of need. And what horizon, my dear congressman, might that be?Err ... if you'd read what the Congressman actually said, you'd know: Kuwait -- Q My other question. What do you mean exactly by a Quick Reaction Force in the r...
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Best of Both WorldsWork in Progress Andrew Sullivan has made good us... (23.11.2005, 03:45 UTC)
Work in ProgressAndrew Sullivan has made good use of his soap box to tackle the Bush Administration pro-torture policies, even though, as Sullywatch points out, he hasn't yet grasped the inner need that torture fulfills for his former allies on the right. But he still exhibits occasional GWOT sloppiness, such as in this post which is actually making a good point:[context] PADILLA CHARGED: There years after being detained. I like this detail: >> An indictment is merely an accusation. All defenda...
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Best of Both WorldsLook out, Pajamas Media Mike Power has a nice rou... (22.11.2005, 21:59 UTC)
Look out, Pajamas Media Mike Power has a nice roundup of the fiasco that is Pajamas Media, although it was still called Open Source Media when Mr Power was putting that post together. However, it seems that their vision that the Internet offers huge scope for a start-from-scratch news network is catching on: [AP via WSJ, subs. req'd] Governments across Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America agreed Tuesday to launch their own Internet-based news network to counter what they called pr...
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Best of Both WorldsAn Ulster once again Every so often, the would-be... (22.11.2005, 19:52 UTC)
An Ulster once again Every so often, the would-be omniscient blogger is forced to conclude that there's an important relevant issue out there about which we haven't a clue. Today it's Northern Ireland secretary Peter Hain's radical proposals to restructure local government and administration in the six counties -- not least to make the structures correspond a bit better with the county structure than they do now. Hain's main salespitch is For a place the size of Northern Ireland, 5,400 squ...
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Best of Both WorldsTypo of the Day Running out the clock as Time Mag... (22.11.2005, 15:30 UTC)
Typo of the Day Running out the clock as Time Magazine's Blog of the Year, Powerline: At the Manhattan Institute's City Journal site, Heather Mac Donald takes a look at the how the recent revelation of torture in Iraqi-fun Baghdad prisons disrupts the "torture narrative" propounded by anti-war critics: [update: typo since repaired]
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Best of Both WorldsDump it in the Mersey Tuesday's Irish Times (subs... (22.11.2005, 05:12 UTC)
Dump it in the Mersey Tuesday's Irish Times (subs. req'd) reports on the very long list of nominees for the Impac Literary award; in principle this is a run as a Man Booker style operation, but with bigger money and fewer restrictions on origin and even language of the author. But there are costs to this openness: Cecilia (sic) Ahern's PS I Love You and Colm Tóibín's The Master are among six Irish books longlisted for the €100,000 Impac Dublin Literary Award 2006 ... The lon...
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