THE DEATH OF MULTICULTURALISM. Ensconced in TimesSelect's fortress, David Brooksweighs in today on Mike's essay. Brooks sees Tomasky's call for supplanting rights-based liberalism with a new(-old) common good liberalism as reflective of a sea change among Democrats and activists -- "over the past few years," he writes, "multiculturalism has faded away" as a pillar of the Democratic Party and American liberalism.
WHEN I WAS YOUNG AND RACIST, I WAS YOUNG AND RACIST.Ryan Lizza's new profile of George Allen is the sort of article that can sink a candidacy. Lizza reaches deep into Allen's past and, like a magician pulling endless amount of ropes from a tiny hat, emerges with decorative nooses, a string of confederate flags (one from Allen's car, another from his living room, another from the pin on his lapel in his high school yearbook photo), and a long pattern of racist votes and dog whistle appeals.
A QUESTION ABOUT KARL ROVE'S SELF-DEFENSE. Can anyone explain this? Here's how today's Washington Post described part of the testimony that Karl Rove offered yesterday:
Rove's testimony focused almost exclusively on his conversation about Plame with Time magazine reporter Matthew Cooper in 2003 and whether the top aide later tried to conceal it, the source said. Rove testified, in essence, that "it would have been a suicide mission" to "deliberately lie" about his conversation with Cooper because he knew beforehand that it eventually would be revealed, the source said. (Emphasis added.)
WHO YOU CALLIN' STUPID? Methinks a lot of folks out there are too quick to underestimate the intelligence of highly trained professional politicians. The basic dilemma facing Democrats at the moment regarding gasoline goes as follows:
TELEPHONE AND SADDAM'S TERRORISM. Based on a whole bunch of captured Iraqi documents, the Pentagon has assembled an Iraq Perspective Project report (PDF) on Saddam Hussein's regime which serves as the basis for this long article in Foreign Affairs on which Andrew Sullivan based this blog post concluding that "Those who sincerely marched against war in London in 2002 and 2003 were unwittingly marching to keep in power a regime planning to bomb and terrorize
MORE DELAYING TACTICS ON IRAQ INTEL PROBE FROM PAT ROBERTS. Senator Pat Roberts is so determined to delay a real probe into the Bush administration's prewar deceptions that he's breaking the promises he makes in his own press releases. On March 14, Roberts, who chairs the Senate Intelligence Committee, put out a press release that purported to lay out a timetable for the committee's ongoing probe.
WORST. PROGRAM. EVER.ViaTyler Cowen, Human Eventslists the "ten most harmful government programs," two of which -- income tax withholding and earmarking -- aren't programs at all. The super-popular pillars of the social insurance state -- Social Security (#1), Medicare (#2), and Medicaid (#7) -- all make the list, along with genuinely harmful farm subsidies at number five in a tie with "contraceptive funding." Rounding things out are affirmative action and the obscure-until-last-fall Davis-Bacon Act.
THE SUNLIGHT FOUNDATION AND CONGRESSPEDIA. Today Jeff Birnbaumreports on the activities of the interesting new Sunlight Foundation, financed by securities bigwig Michael Klein and headed up by goo-goo veteran Ellen Miller. I was briefed on some of Sunlight's activities a few weeks ago; certainly one of their most compelling visions, looking forward, would be the expansion and perhaps integration of the valuable campaign finance information currently available in disparate databases like OpenSecrets.org (which is run by Miller's old shop, the Center for Responsive Politics).