Tuesday, January 27, 2004
** Iraq

Another white house battle over Iraq policy. Gotta love this internal conflict.
* Journalism

MediaWhoresOnline is reporting that Howard Kurtz may be involved in one or more serious ethical scandals.
Monday, January 26, 2004
* Entertainment

According to this Slashdot story, leaked footage of Star Wars: Episode III is now online.

I haven't seen it myself since the site is slashdotted, but from the comments, it sounds like its worth checking out later. If it's still around, that is.
Friday, January 23, 2004
* Politics: Four Tickets out of New Hampshire?

Another repost of my diary on DailyKos. If you're interested, do check it out and vote in my poll.

This year is unique. The old conventional wisdom no longer applies. I think that regardless of the outcome on Tuesday, there will be four tickets out of New Hampshire.

Kerry probably wins NH, but his support is an inch deep, as someone said in a recent comment. Dean keeps fighting regardless. Edwards is looking to the future in any event.

The only one of the big four that might not make it out of NH is Clark, and that's only if he comes in distant fourth AND Kerry wins big.

After Tuesday, the race becomes more regional, and each candidate has different strenghths. Each of the big four candidates will start picking up delegates. What happens next? I see three possibilities.

1) Maybe Kerry (or the new front runner, whoever that is) ends up getting so much free media support and so many delegates that he runs away with it.

2) Two of the other four candidates enter into an alliance / ticket. For example, Clark or Edwards, looking at third and fourth place, join up with each other on a Edwards / Clark or a Clark / Edwards ticket. (Pure speculation, but I gotta figure that either one of these guys would prefer to be VP than sitting at home for the next four years). This new uber-team might then make it a race with the front runner.

3) Things stay in flux until the convention, where anything can happen.

Either way, I don't see any of the big four dropping out until February 4 at the earliest.
Thursday, January 22, 2004
* Culture Wars

According to this NYTimes article, there is now a full-scale google bombing war underway over the term "miserable failure". As I'm sure y'all know, liberal bloggers have managed to link the term to Bush's official whitehouse bio. Conservative bloggers are now trying to attach the term to Hilary, Carter, and Michael Moore.

I'm just doing my little part to help out.
Wednesday, January 21, 2004
*** "News"

As part of a bidding war over rights to interview Michael Jackson, NBC offered not just money, but also to preempt or cancel a Dateline piece that was critical of him. Nice. After they lost (to Fox) they ran the piece, and are now claiming that's it's all a big misunderstanding. Right.

via Atrios
Tuesday, January 20, 2004
* Politics

This is a repost from my diary on DailyKos.

So we're down to four real candidates. Kos thinks the order may be Dean, Kerry, Edwards, Clark. I suppose I agree, although we'll certainly know more as the week progresses. Here's my issue: I don't like Kerry. I'd be thrilled to have any of Clark, Dean, or Edwards (in alphabetical order) as the Democratic nominee.

What if, hypothetically, the Dean decline continues this week and Kerry starts polling as the favorite in New Hampshire?

If I were New Hampshire voter (and I am not), I might then decide that my vote could best be used strategically to pick an anti-Kerry among the three remaining choices. How should I vote?

My thesis: I think at this point that Edwards would make the best anti-Kerry. Here's my reasoning.

What do you think? Could it come down to a Kerry/Edwards fight against all conventional wisdom?
Saturday, January 17, 2004
** Culture Wars

Apparently fundamentalist Christians actually believe that Saddam and Osama are manifestations of Satan.
So when our born-again president refers to Osama bin Laden as "the Evil One," he is not dealing in metaphor or analogy, even assuming he is capable of such things. Rather he is addressing his co-religionists in a not-so-secret code.
No wonder things are so fucked up in this country these days.
Thursday, January 15, 2004
* Iraq

If you enjoyed my previous post about Saddam's POW status, you should follow it up with a visit to this Billmon article. Apparently there are more consequences to this designation than even Juan Cole mentioned. For example, as a POW, he is supposedly entitled to keep the $750,000 that was found with him at the time of his capture. He's also entitled to receive his monthly armend forces salary (maybe $60 per month), paid by the US governement.
Tuesday, January 13, 2004
* Politics

I don't think it was a good idea for the Bush administration to instigate this investigation against O'Neill. I feel like his actual points are getting a lot more play than they would have if Bush & Co. had just ignored them.
Monday, January 12, 2004
** Iraq

Iraq expert Juan Cole (always worth reading) has an interesting post on Saddam's status as a POW. Apparently, according to the Geneva Convention, the US (and not Iraq) will have to try Saddam since he is a designated POW. Moreover, they are supposed to do it within three months of his capture. As Cole points out, the interesting angle here is why did the Pentagon make this designation, and why now?
* Entertainment

Pirates of the Caribbean defeated the Lord of the Rings for favorite movie in the People's Choice awards. Is this a bad sign for LOTR for the academy awards? Or are the People's Choice awards so irrelevant that this is actually good news?
Wednesday, January 07, 2004
** Terrorism

This Washington Post article has lots of specific information about the threats that the government was reacting to during the holidays.
Tuesday, January 06, 2004
* Travel

A Salon writer was scheduled to fly on one of the canceled Aeromexico flights into LAX this weekend. His tale makes you wonder whether the airline industry could survive having this heightened security become permanent.
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