GROGGY. Is the Russian Navy finally beginning to come out of its fifteen year hibernation? Admiral Kuznetsov, the Russian Navy's sole aircraft carrier, will apparently rejoin the fleet by the end of the year. Admiral Nahkimov, a Kirov class nuclear battlecruiser, is scheduled to return to service next year after eight years laid up. By themselves, of course, these moves barely begin to staunch the bleeding that the Russian Navy has experienced since 1991, but they may nonetheless signal that the Kremlin has decided to make naval power a higher priority.
GREAT LEDERS. One of the little biographical secrets that I keep from most of my friends is that I actually went to journalism school. The very first week, they taught us how to write a lead. (This was the first course in the four-year curriculum of How To Write Badly.) Anyway, I can tell you as someone whose family spent several thousands of dollars to teach him that this right here is one of the great leads of all time.
UPDATE: Bert Sugar, wherever you are, please forgive me for failing to see the similarities between this lede, and the famous one written by John Lardner concerning the untimely death by lead poisoning of a prominent fighter:
CHENEY SPEAK, YOU LISTEN.The Washington ExaminersBill Sammon provides some fascinating details from an exclusive interview he conducted on Air Force Two with Vice President Dick Cheney. Cheney predicts the Republicans will hold both chambers of Congress, says Dennis Hastert is a great Speaker who should not step down, and claims that Republicans dont fear potential congressional investigations should Democrats taken control of one or both houses of Congress.
A MILLION LITTLE PIECES.The Hill has a slew of story-advancing short pieces on Foleygate today: A report on the truly severe rifts emerging within the House GOP leadership; a story documenting a push by Deborah Pryce, a member of that leadership team who's also facing a serious reelection fight, for a new angle of the scandal to be investigated; an account of everyone's favorite backbe
WON'T LAST THE DAY. That's what Bay Buchanan was saying yesterday afternoon on CNN about the fate of House Speaker Dennis Hastertin response to the latest development in the Mark Foley scandal -- the one in which Kirk Fordham, Foley's former chief of staff, claims he brought, three years ago, Foley's predatory behavior with pages to the attention of staffers in the speaker's office. (Bay's literal prediction has been proven wrong, of course, but it's early yet.) All this comes on the heels of calls by prominent right-wingers, most notably New Right Founding Father Richard Viguerie, for Hastert to step down.
Every news article that reports on Fed Chairman Benjamin Bernanke's assessment of the housing market should include a warning notice. Alan Greenspan has publicly stated that he deliberately chose to not to talk about the stock bubble while it was inflating, even though he recognized the bubble, because he thought it was inapproprate for the Fed to try to influence the course of the bubble.
If Mr. Bernanke has the same view of the Fed's responsibilities as Alan Greenspan, this means that he would not say that he believed there to be a housing bubble, even if in fact did believe that there was a housing bubble. This means that, whether or not Mr. Bernanke's believes there is a housing bubble, he will say that he sees no serious risk of major price declines in housing prices.
FOR THEM BEFORE HE WAS AGAINST THEM. The National Labor Relations Board, currently stacked with anti-worker Bush appointees, ruled today that about 8 million workers are actually of supervisor status, and thus cannot form unions. Charming. Exactly one month ago, Bush spoke at a union's Center for Maritime Training and Education, saying:
THE REAL CULPRIT. I'm truly going to miss the old girl when she loses by a couple of miles in November. Perhaps in gratitude to Mark Foley for declining to run for the Senate, thereby enabling her to put together the most singular combination of incompetence and public nutbaggery in the history of American electoral politics, Katherine Harris cuts right to the heart of the ongoing scandal -- if you're keeping score at home, the Republican leadership of the House knew nothing of any of this, but the omnipotent Democratic leadership sat on this information until just the right moment.
JUST POSTED ON TAP ONLINE: CONFOUND IT. You knew it was coming: Paul BermanrejoinsEric Alterman's rejoinder to his essay on I.F. Stone. What is the proper way to assess Soviet Communism's influence on the American left? What does Berman think a midcentury American Menshevik has to teach American liberals about current Iran policy?
WEBCAMERON. Wrist-deep in a sink full of dirty dishes, discussing his vision for a better country while continuously fighting off interruptions from his kid -- this is how Britain�s boyish new Conservative Leader David Cameronchose to appear in a new behind-the-scenes website launched this week. Cameron, who spoke today at his party�s conference and is profiled glowingly in this morning�s Times, is already a political phenomenon across the pond.