HEH. I'm not much in the habit of regurgitating DCCC press releases, but this quote from Rahm Emanuel is too funny not to pass on:
Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Congressman Rahm Emanuel, today released the following statement on President Bush�s �best moment in office�:
�Five years after President Bush said he would find Osama bin Laden, we�re all glad to hear that all he�s caught is an apparently harmless fish,� said Congressman Rahm Emanuel, Chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
An apt point of comparison, considering that bin Laden is still at large.
GOSS LINKS.Spencer Ackerman offers some useful thoughts on Porter Goss' resignation, drawing parallels between his experience and that of his predecessor, George Tenet, in attempting simultaneously to lead a fiercely turf-conscious bureaucracy while also carrying out Bush administration prerogatives inimical to that bureaucracy. Meanwhile, viaMatt, National Review helpfully articulates the maximally pro-politicization line on the subject here.
BUSH LIED, FISH DIED? I'd heard questions raised as to whether it was really possible for the President's finest hour to have been catching a 7.5 pound perch in light of the fact that American perch don't get that big. According to the White House, however, this is a complete misunderstanding -- he was being interviewed in English, then that got translated into German, and then translated back into English. What the President actually said was "the best moment was when I caught a seven-and-a-half pound large mouth bass on my lake." Bass do get big enough to make that plausible.
FROM ONE GULF TO ANOTHER. There's been some talk on the blogs about how Arab and Muslim support for the cash-strapped Hamas-led Palestinian Authority is quite low in the grand scheme of things, but just how low it is comparatively speaking is really driven home when you look at the incredible generosity of a number of Arab states towards the United States in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. All told, Arab states plegded $700 million in one-time aid to private entities to assist victims of the natural disaster in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas, including housing and medical donations.
THE BEAST ONLY GROWS HUNGRIER. Maybe I'm just dense, but did we really need a serious academic paper to explain that when conservatives cut taxes, government doesn't necessarily shrink? After all, a quick glance at George W. Bush's tenure reveals a nice pattern of massive tax cuts tilted towards the rich followed by huge entitlement expansions meant to win back favor amongst the middle class -- he's a don't-tax but still-spend conservative. And that's not even getting into Iraq, which has been funded almost entirely through so-called "emergency" appropriations, the main virtue of which is that they're not factored into budget estimates.
WHAT A MESS. A front-pager (at least online) at The New York Times details the predictable decline of medical services in the Gaza Strip under the economically sanctioned Hamas-led Palestinian government, and outlines the increasingly dire predictions of the World Health Organization for the long-term health of the Palestinian medical infrastructure. Meanwhile, gun-battles between rival armed factions fighting for the control of the (unpaid since March) Palestinian security forces have left three dead:
THE IMMIGRANT ROCK.The Washington Post has a notably good history of the immigration debate today. From Germans who saw no reason for linguistic assimilation to Jewish communities that served as hotbeds for socialism to Italians who lagged in educational attainment, the various arguments being trotted out to prove that, no, Mexicans are different, were all paraded about in the past to prove that group X, finally, was too intrinsically deviant to accept into American society.
THE HAYDEN CHOICE.Bush's choice to run the CIA, General Michael Hayden, is provoking some Republican opposition from members of both congressional Intelligence committees who don't want to see a military officer put in charge of the agency. If there's anything that can provoke GOP congresspeople to buck the administration, it's probably squabbling over turf, so something may really come of this initial poor reception.
IS THE CLOCK TICKING FOR KARL ROVE? Today's Washington Post piece on Karl Rovereminds us just how implausible Karl Rove's Plamegate story has always been. It appears Patrick Fitzgerald is very skeptical of Rove's claim that he forgot his conversation with Time reporter Matthew Cooper about Valerie Plame because Rove was up to his neck in the White House's political efforts to deal with critics of pre-war intelligence failures:
HATING ON HILLARY. I'd take Matt's critique of Hillary Clinton a little further than he did. Liberal distaste for Clinton is not a mere reaction to her ceaseless triangulation and ideological timidity, but a frustration at her blithe unwillingness to make the most of her position on the public stage. She is that rarest of Democratic breeds: a superstar, a human starting gun. When she speaks, the media listens. When she holds a press conference, reporters attend. So progressives view Clinton as a walking opportunity cost; she occupies one of the few superstar spots a party can furnish, but has refused to use that power in service of party or liberalism. The anger isn't merely over what she has done, but what she hasn't done.