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Tuesday, April 29, 2003  

Short takes

I was hoping to wear shorts today and get some sunlight on these pale legs, but the weather has gone from sunny to dark skies and thunder. You did know the phrase "sun breaks" originated in the Pacific Northwest, right?

•Maybe they should've stuck to comedy

James at A Skeptical is skeptical about Penn and Teller when it comes to environmentalism. He is now on Part 6 of a series about how the duo misunderstands or misinterprets the science behind environmentalism in their reportage.

As I said in the beginning, there are points that I absolutely agree with. I agree that the environmental movement (as opposed to environmental science) is simply chocked full of nuts. I agree that the environmental movement carries with it other agendas (such as antiglobalaztion). I agree that they are sadly misinformed about environmental science. I agree that the last thing a lot of environmental groups want to do is bring science to the table, because it will upset their carefully constructed propagandize house of cards.

Unfortunately, I can say the same thing about Penn & Teller.

One of the issues my relationships with radical associates founder on is the environmentalist movement's extremists -- the ecoterrorists. I say a terrorist is a terrorist is a terrorist. They say a person burning vehicles or bombing a building to teach car sellers or ski lodge owners a lesson is not a terrorist. Seems to me that the intent behind the act is the key. If it is meant to frighten people to achieve a political goal then the act is terrorism.

•Back to the future

Economist and general brain about town Brad DeLong has an interesting entry that harkens back to the 'beginning of history' phenomenon we discussed weeks ago.

Jim Henley explains how Yasser Arafat and company permanently and totally lost their battle for the hearts and minds of him, me, and I would bet most Americans in the summer of 1972. Some of my schoolmates were on the airplanes flown to Jordan and blown up in 1970, so Palestinian terrorism seemed very real as we watched the Munich Olympics Massacre on TV... Unqualified Offerings: ...I was twelve years old at the time of the Munich Olympics and I saw the whole, awful thing, and the experience never left me.

My strongest impressions in regard to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict were developed from the late 1980s to the mid-1990s when a solution looked possible. I wonder when younger people developed what may become a solid stance on the issue? Matthew? Julian? Jesse?

•Newt does his duty

Digby is back! (From posing for one of those California nude protest pics, perhaps?) He says Newt Gringrich can't have lost much status by blowing up at Colin Powell. Instead, Gingrich was fulfilling his destiny.

The Republicans understand propaganda and Newtie understands it better than anyone. He fired off a salvo at the behest of the radical imperialists in the administration knowing full well that he would be severely criticized by the Colin Powell faction. It isn't the first time that he has taken a bullet purely for the purpose of injecting a new meme into the discourse. As that great DC journalist Cokie Roberts once said, "It doesn't matter if it's true or not, it's out there."

Digby's argument is convincing to me. However, I do wonder why Gingrich, the man who wanted to be president if he could find a wife pretty enough to be first lady, hasn't taken his ball and gone home. Does he really owe the Bushites anything? Is seeing his reactionary vision of the world come closer to fruition enough to make up for being dissed?

•Who you gon' call, now?

What can an immigrant wife trapped in a marriage to a bigot who abuses her do? Silver Rights considers the problem.

6:47 PM