Thursday, April 06, 2006


Go Forth & Cyn No More

Cynthia McKinney finally gets around to doing the right thing -- apologizing for her Capitol Police-bashing incident.

The most interesting thing about this is the dog that DIDN'T bark, to wit: McKinney said that this was a case of "being a member of Congress while black." Well, it was fascinating that not one other member of the Congressional Black Caucus stepped forward to say that they had been ill-treated by Capitol cops in a racial manner. We're talking here about such "shrinking violets" as Maxine Waters, Charles Rangel, John Lewis, etc.

If there was any sort of history here, the CBC would have been out in front in support of McKinney. Instead,
Members of the Congressional Black Caucus, which has declined to comment because the facts of the case are in dispute, met Wednesday evening to discuss the incident. McKinney was in attendance.
It can't go without notice that if McKinney is indicted, she will have given Republicans a gift from the heavens. At a moment when all the legal news coming from Capitol Hill has involved members of the GOP, she may serve up a headline of "Democratic Member of Congress Assaults Cop."

Nice going, Cynthia. I'm sure Nancy Pelosi, Howard Dean and Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Rahm Emmanuel, will be sending flowers: This is EXACTLY the sort of example they wanted to point out how ready the Democrats are to lead the House of Representatives.

Talk about an all around political embarrassment.

UPDATE: John Lewis proves himself the classy one here. Of course, the outgoing gentleman from the Lone Star State has to provide some comic relief:

Rep. Tom DeLay (R-Texas) told Human Events on Tuesday that he would consider
filing an ethics complaint against McKinney if nobody else did. Yesterday he
said he would monitor how law-enforcement authorities deal with the matter.
There's a pot and kettle line that seems fitting here, but far be it from me to go there.

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Wednesday, April 05, 2006


Ah, the Joy of Wi-Fi

The lovely White Swan Bed & Breakfast in Chestertown, Maryland is fully equipped with Wi-Fi! Way cool!

So, I can actually
note this story and say that, yes, Capitol Police Chief Terrence Gainer is exactly right. In short, Cynthia McKinney just shut up (unless you are pausing to let a police officer know that you are, indeed, a Congresswoman). Let's keep in mind that -- well before 9/11, a maniac burst through the magnetometers at the Capitol and killed two members of the Capitol Police.

They aren't trying to stop people just for the heck of it.

Hat tip:
Josh Marshall.

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Traveling Today... the Eastern Shore of Maryland for the blog event mentioned here.

If the opportunity presents, I may be able to post something during a moment of downtime. If not, I'll be back tomorrow with a rundown of our discussion -- and, yes, kids, my long-requested views on immigration!

Talk to you when I talk to you!

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Tuesday, April 04, 2006


Apres Moi...Le Merde

After observing French society explode over a new labor law:

Watching the protests in France over employment rights for the young reminds me of the book The Little Ice Age by Brian Fagan (great book by the way). In it, he describes the vast economic and cultural changes that took place in Europe because of the Little Ice Age (between 1550-1850).
The increasing rain and colder climate the Little Ice Age brought to Europe totally decimated the cultivation of wheat products that had become a staple during the Middle Ages.
Nation after nation in Europe turned to the potato -- which thrived in the colder, wetter climates -- for salvation.

Except for France.

The potato was beneath French culture and -- while England and Germany's economies thrived -- France endured 111 famines between 1371 and 1791, sixteen of them in the eighteenth century alone. Only the complete collapse of French society and subsequent French Revolution brought about a change in French thinking. Once French culture adopted potato production into their culture and economy, the cycle of famine ended. The productivity and reliability of potato farming helped increase
Europe's population and freed more nonagricultural workers for the Industrial Revolution.

The French only react after jumping into the abyss -- and not before.

Very pecuilar.

Now, there's an understatement!

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A Blogosphere Live Event

On Wednesday evening, I will be participating in a panel discussion on political blogs at Washington College in Chestertown on Maryland's Eastern Shore.

My friend and occasional sparring partner Steve Clemons has the details. Matt Stoller of My DD and Paul Zummo of Confirm Them are also in on the fun and games.

As Steve notes, the forum is open to the public, so if you find yourself out by the Eastern Shore (just 40 minutes or so from Wilmington on the other side of the Delaware Bridge), come on by.

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Departing Without DeLay

And the walls came down.

The end to a rather spectacular career, though at this point, hardly surprising.

Of course, there is the usual blame-the-political-enemy for one's woes:
"I refuse to allow liberal Democrats an opportunity to steal this seat with a negative personal campaign," DeLay said. "The voters of the 22nd district of Texas deserve a campaign about the vital national issues that they care most about and that affect their lives every day and not a campaign focused solely as a referendum on me."
We discussed this proclivity just a few days ago.

You know, Mr. DeLay, the old "I'm quitting because I can't win in this political environment" line would have been a little more convincing had your former deputy chief of staff not plead guilty last week -- with the likelihood of other ex-aides being indicted soon.

Of course, the-moving-to-a-Virginia-suburb so you are no longer eligible to be on the Texas ballot is something of a new stunt. However, DeLay's getting out now so the Republicans can put someone else (who has a greater shot at winning) on the ballot -- even though the primary is over -- does have precedent: Ironically, it would be
this situation involving a certain ethics-challenged former Demorcatic Senator!

Maybe Bob and Tom can now form a bipartisan lobbying firm!

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Monday, April 03, 2006


Opening Day

Pending rain on both coasts, the New York Mets and the New York Yankees open their respective baseball seasons today. Optimism is particularly high for the Boys from Flushing. Even with pitiching ace Pedro Martinez not starting today's game because of a bad toe that delayed the beginning of his spring training, the Mets have reason for good feeling: A killer line-up, revamped bullpen and fingers-crossed starting rotation give the "Amazins" a real shot at finally deposing the Atlanta Braves as the beasts of the National League East -- if not more.

That said, my DC baseball pal ERA writes in with what he calls the "missing" piece to the tale of owner conflicts
we detailed on Friday.

He writes:

The one key player missing from theMLB/Montreal/Florida/ Boston cartel is the man MLB let leave the job as GM of the Montreal Expos to let him pursue his dream job as GM of the New York Mets ---- Omar Minaya. Minaya's silence had to have come with a higher price than just a job. Lets see: Minaya's first major acquisition for the Mets -- Pedro Martinez -- came from John Henry's Boston Red Sox. A free agent after the 2005 season, Martinez was insulted by Henry's seeming little interest in retaining him, so he gladly signed with Minaya's Mets. Then Minaya miraculously signs Carlos Beltran when everyone assumed he was NY Yankee bound but the Yankees showed surprising little interest in him. (The Yankees would later be compensated by stealing Bostons CF, Johnny Damon, a year later.) Minaya's big catches this off-season were made through multiple trades with -- oop's, there he is again -- Jeff Loria's Florida Marlins: Carlos Delgado and Paul Lo Duca. It is quite clear that come this October, the NewYork Mets will be World Series Champions ---justlike 20 years ago.
Well, folks, you read it here first!

And, if this comes to pass, then it means that every key participant (whether directly-involved owner, memberof a key owners committee or deeply-involved general manager) in the Expos-Sox-Marlins merry-go-round will have gotten (been rewarded with) a world championship over the four years since the multiple deals went down -- to say nothing of the millions each owner gets as his cut of the eventual sale of the Expos.

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Upon Further Review...

That whole thing about evangelicals loving Bush because his remaking of the Middle East might bring about the "final days"?

Um, never mind.

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