Archive for August, 2008

Perhaps Nature is Trying to Tell Republicans Something

Posted on August 29th, 2008 in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

The GOP is considering postponing its convention because of a tropical storm/hurricane heading towards New Orleans.

Senior Republicans said images of political celebration in the Twin Cities while thousands of Americans flee a hurricane could be dubious. “Senator McCain has always been sensitive to national crisis,” said McCain spokesman Tucker Bounds

A hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico could also cast unwelcome attention on the offshore oil rigs that McCain has championed as a solution to rising gasoline prices — they are now being evacuated in the face of the coming storm.

But there could be a silver lining if Bush used the storm as an excuse not to attend the convention. (Bush-he’s the president. Sometimes one forgets.)

Former White House spokesman Scott McClellan, who said in a recent book that Hurricane Katrina left “an indelible stain” on the Bush presidency, said Bush should be making plans to cancel his speech. …He also suggested that McCain could benefit politically from such a scenario: It would allow Bush to mount an effective GOP response to a disaster, while removing the unpopular president from the convention roster. “It could be a two-fer,” McClellan said.

The mind reels….

He’s Running for Prezident

Posted on August 29th, 2008 in Uncategorized | No Comments »

TalkingPointsMemo.com found this for sale in the John McCain store:

A Palin!

Posted on August 29th, 2008 in Uncategorized | 21 Comments »

John McCain has picked the female governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin, as his veep candidate—even though she’s been governor for less than two years.

Well! Who says the GOP doesn’t believe in affirmative action?

(Or, as some other websites might say, WTF?)

Of course McCain hopes that he’ll attract female voters by this choice. But the pick is really the worst kind of sexism–the idea that women will now vote for McCain just because his veep pick is a woman, rather than the fact that she’s a qualified woman. And she clearly isn’t qualified. What if McCain dropped dead (always a  possibility)—how would you feel about Palin (who, by the way, is eight months older than I am—and I’m young!) moving into the office?

By the way, so few people have any idea who she is that her Wikipedia entry, which I’m now trying to read (got it!), can’t be accessed; everyone’s trying to learn something about Sarah Palin. Including an independent investigator hired by the Alaska state senate to see if Palin tried to fire her ex-brother-in-law from a state trooper job!

Palin replaced the guy with a sexual harasser. But, you know, women will vote for her regardless….

Fun facts about Palin:

1) she’s a former beauty queen

2) in high school, she played basketball and was head of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, who would lead the team in prayer before games

3) Her husband works for an oil company!

4) An evangelical Christian, Palin gave birth to her second son even though genetic tests showed that he would develop Down’s Syndrome. Which he did.

5) She’s a lifetime NRA member.

6) She smoked pot, but says she didn’t like it. (In her case, I actually believe this.)

7) In all fairness…she has a reputation as a reformer who has taken on the state’s crooked Republican establishment.

8) She once appeared in an ad for LensCrafters. (Sorry, just kidding.)

How ’bout Barack?

Posted on August 29th, 2008 in Uncategorized | No Comments »

He was great last night, wasn’t he?

I just kept thinking, how is John McCain going to match that?

And you know what else is wonderful? The same night that McCain is giving his speech, the New York Giants and the Washington Redskins start the NFL season. And it’s on NBC. How many folks are going to watch John McCain, never known as a scintillating speaker, and how many folks will watch the Giants serve up the Redskins on a platter?

Oh, and by the way, the Giants kicked the Patriots’ ass [ass? asses?] last night.

Which reminds me that, for Obama, delivering his speech in a football stadium was a masterful bit of stagecraft. He surrounds himself with the trappings of male Americana, and attracts a crowd the size of which McCain couldn’t in three acceptance speeches combined. Now McCain is trying to regain momentum with the announcement of a running mate. But who really cares who John McCain’s running mate is? I didn’t think the Democrats had an exciting bunch of veep candidates, but the Republican possibilities are even less so.

Also, McCain has an appearance problem: He’s old. So if he picks someone old, he looks…old. But if he picks someone young, he looks…old. Hmmm….why not…Joe Lieberman!

Is Harvard Racist?

Posted on August 29th, 2008 in Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

Following the news that Drew Faust has appointed a committee to investigate whether Harvard cops are racist, the Globe ups the ante today with a piece headlined, “At Harvard, blacks perceive blatant culture of prejudice.”

Interviews with black students and faculty reflect a perceived climate of underlying racial insensitivity on campus that goes beyond the police. The students recounted incidents when they said white students made them feel as though they do not belong. Their sentiments echoed those of W.E.B. Du Bois, the university’s first black PhD, who famously said, “I was in Harvard, but not of it.

As she has done in the past, Drew Faust continues to disappear whenever the subject is not one she wants to be associated with.

Faust could not be reached for comment on the racial climate at Harvard.

I guess it’s smart, but it’s cynical too, and not exactly leadership. Kind of like announcing the formation of this committee a day before Labor Day weekend. If Larry Summers had done the same thing, what would we have said?

Here’s Why I’m a Bad Person

Posted on August 29th, 2008 in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

Because I am slightly pleased that Red Sox ace Josh Beckett is hurt.

As Francona finished his postgame press session in the tiny visiting manager’s office at Yankee Stadium, Epstein announced that ace Josh Beckett would be scratched from his start tonight. Instead, he will consult with Dr. James Andrews about his ailing right elbow.

I know! It’s not very sporting of me. But the truth is, I can live with a post-season without the Yankees. I don’t feel like the Yankees need to win the World Series every year. (Though a little more frequently than 0 for the ’00s would be nice.)

I can handle all that—as long as the Red Sox don’t win the World Series either. And if they don’t make the playoffs, well, that’s even better.

I don’t wish Beckett any permanent harm. If he were traded to the National League tomorrow, I’d offer a prayer for his recovery. But an injury that knocks him out for the rest of the season?

Hmmm……

Oh, and by the way: How about that Jacob Ellsbury, not making a throw to home on the final play of the game so that he could keep the last ball played in a Yankee-Red Sox game at Yankee Stadium?

You play like that, you don’t deserve to make the playoffs….

Oh, Pleasepleasepleaseplease

Posted on August 29th, 2008 in Uncategorized | 4 Comments »

John McCain apparently won’t be choosing Mitt Romney or Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty as his veep.

That leaves….the insidious, oleaginous, odious Joe Lieberman!

Oh, pleasepleasepleaseplease….

(Pause for breath.)

Oh, pleasepleasepleaseplease….

Anything to get Lieberman the hell out of Connecticut….

Building Buzz in New Haven

Posted on August 28th, 2008 in Uncategorized | No Comments »

The newly refurbished Yale School of Architecture, long considered an architectural fiasco, gets a rave review in the Times.

the great revelation is the way the muscularity of the exterior is used to disguise the lightness of the interiors. Like Frank Lloyd Wright in his 1904 Larkin Building, Rudolph sets his entry staircase off center, near a corner marked by a soaring concrete tower. A slender pillar rises out of the staircase’s edge. The pillar forces you to enter the space at a slight angle, and then slip between two towering concrete forms before climbing up to the lobby, as if you were passing through a prehistoric gorge.

The sense of spatial compression contributes to the shock you feel once you step inside. Light spills down through skylights. As you step deeper into the space, exterior views open up, including a loving view of Kahn’s glass facade. The effect is breathtaking, and it only intensifies as you reach the upper floors.

I’m astonished: When I was at Yale, the building was reviled, particularly by those who had to work in it. Now, sounds pretty great.

Hey! The Yankees Won!

Posted on August 28th, 2008 in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Okay, now I can say it: I would have been truly bummed if the Sox had swept the Yankees in their last series at Yankee Stadium. (Well, Yankee Stadium, version 2.)

That would have been deeply bad karma.

But my guy Jason Giambi, who hasn’t been doing much of late, drove in three runs, including the game-winner in the bottom of the ninth, and the Yankees survived John Lester, which is not easy to do.

[The Yankees] beat Boston in the first game ever played at Yankee Stadium, in 1923, and they beat them again on Thursday, 3-2, on a single by Jason Giambi in the bottom of the ninth inning.

Giambi actually has 27 homers, which ain’t chopped liver.

A-Rod, by the way, continued to show his penchant for choking against the Sox, going 0-4 and leaving four men on base. Derek Jeter, by the way, went 3-4, and that is why New York loves him and not A-Rod.

But the important thing is: No sweep. They’re still out of contention, but at least they salvaged something.

Black, Blue and Crimson

Posted on August 27th, 2008 in Uncategorized | 3 Comments »

Drew Faust has announced the formation of a committee to review whether Harvard cops are racist.

(Not quite her language, but that’s basically what it is.)

In an email to senior university administrators and faculty today, President Drew Gilpin Faust announced the creation of a six-member committee to review the police department’s diversity training, community outreach, and recruitment efforts. It will be led by Ralph Martin, former Suffolk County district attorney and managing partner of the Boston office of Bingham McCutchen.

Gawker has more information about the story than does the Globe…(Check out the comments.)

So is it true? Are Harvard police more likely to harass you if you’re black than if you’re not? Anyone?