Matthew Duss

Matthew Duss is president of the Foundation for Middle East Peace and a contributing writer for the Prospect. You can follow him on Twitter @mattduss.

Recent Articles

LOOK UP THE NUMBER.

As part of an apparent effort to reinvigorate political journalism's most tired cliches, James Kirchick declares that "the Left lacks a sense of humor." He offers as proof my Think Progress post from Tuesday, in which I noted what a sad commentary on conservatism it was that Christopher Buckley felt that John McCain needed to be forgiven for opposing torture. Quoth Peretz 's ward: Aside from the fact that the author of this post totally misses the point in that Buckley is lampooning McCain’s conservative critics, he also seems like a total party pooper. Observe that, in the column, Buckley refers to the “the Archfiend, Ted Kennedy” and notes that Fred Thompson “could barely manage to stay awake during his own announcement speech.” Indeed, Buckley opens the piece with an anecdote about a New Yorker cartoon. The problem with the liberals at ThinkProgress is that, since they themselves have no sense of humor, they cannot recognize a joke when it hits them square between the eyes. Observe...

RULES OF ATTRIBUTION FOR THEE...

I'm with Cernig on the Clinton campaign's "plagiarism" charge against Obama : I think they take at least as big a hit on this as he does. TPM has more , and points us to this from Jake Tapper : In a conference call just now the Clinton campaign would not guarantee that Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-NY, has never used someone else's rhetoric without crediting them. I asked Clinton communications director Howard Wolfson and Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass, if they could assure the public that neither Clinton nor McGovern has ever done what Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, did when he used the rhetoric of Gov. Deval Patrick without footnoting him. They would not. In fact, Wolfson seemed to say it wouldn't be as big a deal if it were discovered that Clinton had "lifted" such language. "Sen. Clinton is not running on the strength of her rhetoric," Wolfson said. That's some quick thinking, Howie. --Matthew Duss

YOU HAVE ANGERED THE SCHOLZ.

Still running also-ran Mike Huckabee has been using Boston's song "More Than A Feeling" at campaign rallies, and performing it with his band. News of this has reached the ears of Boston's founder, guitar geek demigod Tom Scholz , who is not amused : Huckabee, a bass guitarist himself, has the endorsement of one of the band’s former members, Barry Goudreau, but its leader Tom Scholz made it clear that the group has never endorsed a candidate and even if it did, the former Arkansas governor was not in tune with them. “Boston has never endorsed a political candidate, and with all due respect, would not start by endorsing a candidate who is the polar opposite of most everything Boston stands for,” Scholz said in a statement. “In fact, although I’m impressed you learned my bass guitar part on More Than a Feeling, I am an Obama supporter.” Scholz then announced his intention to release a response to Huckabee in the form of a sequel to "More Than A Feeling" entitled "But Substantially Less...

BRAND NEW IRAQ, ONLY SIX-HUNDRED BILLION DOLLARS! WHO WANTS TO PLAY?

Continuing to man the "Surge Success!" booth at the Bush Country Fair, neocon carnie Reuel Marc Gerecht looks at the bright side of life: Regarding the Iraq war and jihadism, two facts stand out. First, if we make a comparison with the Soviet-Afghan war of 1979-89, which was the baptismal font for al-Qaeda, what's most striking is how few foreign holy warriors have gone to Mesopotamia since the U.S. invasion in 2003. What's impressive about this is that for years the Bush administration and the neocon apparat relentlessly inflated the numbers of foreign fighters in Iraq, first in an effort to deny the genuinely indigenous, nationalist nature of the insurgency (after first denying the insurgency's existence for over a year), and then to tie Iraq to the broader war on terror by over-representing al-Qaeda's role there (something which only caused al-Qaeda's stock to rise in the Middle East). Don't you remember, these guys had a whole " flypaper " theory worked out, in which terrorists...

LOW HANGING (ORGANIC, OF COURSE) FRUIT.

Over at The Corner , one of Jonah Goldberg 's emailers responds to Goldberg's latest iteration of his argument that torture is no big deal by suggesting that Jonah "go read The Gulag Archipelago , by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. It will tell you all you need to know about torture." Jonah fires back: I've read the Gulag Archipelago. It didn't tell me everything I needed to know about torture, it told me almost everything I needed to know about the evil of the Soviet Union. And, guess what? The comparison between the United States and the Soviet Union is idiotic and slanderous. Now, obviously, one doesn't have to believe that the U.S. and the USSR were morally equivalent in order to be deeply troubled now by the U.S.'s operating a global network of secret prisons wherein suspects are held indefinitely without charge and tortured. One just has to be decent. What brings Jonah's sanctimonious response to the level of farce, however, (or, as Frank Zappa used to say, "out of the realm of mere...

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