Monday, June 30, 2008

Live Zeebop this week

Zeebop this week . . .

We play this Monday night, June 30th, at La Ferme, the country French restaurant in Chevy Chase, Maryland, 7101 Brookville Rd., from 6.30-9.30 p.m. No need to order dinner to enjoy the atmosphere. You can enjoy wine, coffee and/or dessert.

We'll be there every Monday night through July 14th, and then again on August 18th, and then again from September 15th through October 27th.

We play this Wednesday night, July 2nd, at Pap and Peteys, located in D.C. at 5th and H Sts., NE, just a few blocks away from the Union Station metro. We'll play from 8-11 p.m. No cover, no minimum. Great place, cool atmosphere, diverse and friendly crowd. Join us.

We'll be there every Wednesday night in July.

Thanks to all of you who have come out to see us play. We appreciate the support. Thanks to our friend, Duke Cross, for making us the Wednesday night house band at Pap and Peteys.

Finally, please mark your calendar for Thursday, August 21st, at Maggianos in Chevy Chase on Wisconsin Ave., between Western Ave. and Jenifer Sts. We play from 6.30-9.30 p.m.

Learn more about Zeebop by going to our website here. For our new site on MySpace, click here.

Red State Update

Jackie and Dunlap hold forth on Democratic Unity and the much more serious possibility that Budweiser might be bought by "foreigners."

Friday, June 27, 2008

Constitutional nonsense

. . . so the first comment I heard yesterday on the Supreme Court's decision in the Heller gun case came from some "conservative legal scholar" holding forth on the Kojo Nambe Show, one of NPR's midday talk programs that is heads and shoulders above the usual tripe our local affiliate usually offers. Here is what he said, and I'm paraphrasing (but still pretty accurate):

"I don't want to sound hyperbolic, but this could be the Court's greatest civil rights decision since Brown v. Board [of Education, 1954]."

Oh, yes, absolutely. After all, the right to own a dangerous weapon is . . .

. . . more important than the Court's post-Brown decisions holding that religious minorities have constitutional rights, that the state may not impose religion on the unwilling, that criminal defendants have the right to an attorney, that police cannot use evidence that has been illegally obtained, that women are constitutional citizens with equal rights, that women have the right to control their reproductive choices, that public officials have no real immunity from libel suits, that the government cannot determine who can say or print what simply because it claims some mysterious "national security" interest, that the right of habeas corpus cannot be suspended because the president believes it is politically expedient, that juveniles and the mentally retarded cannot be executed . . .

. . . and on and on it goes.

If Heller accomplishes anything the least bit good, it should be this: that Justice Antonin Scalia is exposed for the fraud that he is. Since 1986, when Scalia joined the Court, he has claimed the high moral ground by basing his constitutional "reasoning" on his super-natural ability to glean the "intent" of the constitutional Framers. "Originalism," as a theory, was not trademarked until the early 1980s, when then-Attorney General Edwin Meese claimed that the only responsibility of a judge was to "discover" the intent of the people who wrote whatever phrase of the Constitution was in question and apply that knowledge to the case or controversy before it. And wouldn't you know it, every single application of originalism to a constitutional dispute happened to yield an outcome embraced by social and political conservatives. Robert Bork's confirmation hearings in 1987 offered a nationally televised seminar on the power of ancestor worship as an interpretive constitutional method. Rather than dismiss this "theoretical" nonsense, the conservative legal movement embraced it, and has since been extraordinarily successful in marketing the modern conservative movement -- religious nuts housed with the same lunatics who do not believe that American law applies to American citizens who have been accused of terrorism -- as a return to the "lost" constitutional principles envisioned by the Framers. Even today, there is no shortage of very respectable scholars teaching at elite institutions who really believe that we can know and apply what the Framers intended in 1789 or 1791 or whenever to contemporary problems. If the pro-gun forces are really serious about discovering and applying the Framers' intent, then they should introduce legislation that limits "self-defense" to a single-shot musket rifle or gun and leave all other regulatory matters to the citizenry. They also introduce provisions to this "Musket Bill" prohibiting African-Americans from owning any sort of firearm, since the Framers did not consider blacks people in any sense of the word. They were property with no constitutional right to read, write, travel, enter contracts or negotiate their way in the world as free citizens. For every Abigail Adams who defended her homestead from the British with her rifle, there were thousands more women who weren't allowed to do anything other than what men wanted them to do, which did not, by the way, include for-profit labor or such small matters as voting. Decisions like Heller are, in some ways, even more offensive than the usual parade of horribles like Dred Scott or Bush v. Gore. I'd think I'd rather have my ass kicked by someone who is honest enough to admit he just wants to beat me up than hear how my impending demise is rooted in God's Will or some divine force sent forth by the ghosts of James Madison and John Adams. Law office history does not make for honest scholarship or even honest opinion.  Just a little over a week ago,in Boumediene v. United States, Scalia fretted that returning habeas corpus relief to imprisioned terrorists suspects would result in more Americans being killed.  And making more guns available to people will result in, what, fewer Americans being killed?

Switching gears . . . take a look at the photographs of the good red, white and blue Americans celebrating their "right" to own a gun. Pearls and rep ties; pasty faces and standard-issue Washington haircuts; freshly pressed shirts and J. Crew shorts to match. What are the odds that all the interns and fresh-out-of-college draftees into the Washington culture of think tanks, foundations, law firms and Hill offices have ever held a gun, been a victim of gun violence or had a 9 mm Glock pointed at their face? Probably zero. And these are many of the same people who will campaign tirelessly for John McCain, who wants to appoint more people like Scalia, Clarence Thomas, John Roberts and Sam Alito to the bench. Living life in the abstract allows you to more absolute in your opinions, since abstraction only offers a hypothetical engagement of problems that many, many people outside of the narrow confines of the Washington political culture actually face in their own daily lives.

And so much for the right of the people to govern themselves. Like D.C., almost 30 states have laws regulating or banning handguns. You know, federalism . . . government works best when it reflects the views closest to the people, except if those views conflict with the right-wing social and political agenda of the Republican party. William F. Buckley, the conservative icon, once famously said that he would rather be governed by the first 400 people in the Boston phone book rather than by the faculty of Harvard University.

Except when those 400 people have different views than the five Republican appointed members of the United States Supreme Court.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Kiss, kiss! Bang, bang!

So was one villain's description of James Bond's life and career . . . Mr. Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang! And so it is for the United States Supreme Court's decision today in District of Columbia v. Heller (2008), which affirmed a lower court ruling that invalidated the D.C. government's law banning handguns. Justice Scalia wrote the Court's opinion. No other justice concurred.  The decision was 5-4, with Kennedy joining Scalia, Thomas, Roberts and Alito.

The upshot of the opinion is this: the D.C. law is unconstitutional; the Court's opinion suggests the holding applies to the states, which means that the justices have now officially incorporated the Second Amendment into the Fourteenth Amendment to make it applicable to state and local gun laws.

More comment later. Read the opinion here.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The white house will always be a white house, won't it?

Barack Obama, who was subjected to no small amount of racially directed and, at times, flat-out racist attacks by the Hillary Clinton campaign, has been urged by Clinton's supporters, various Op-Ed heavyweights and elements of the Washington punditocracy to give a speech deploring the sexist treatment to which, they suggest, Hillary was subjected.

Strange. An African-American man who endured a classic Southern low-road campaign largely at the behest of the Clintons is now expected to "speak out" against sexism. Funny . . . no one manned the torpedoes to demand that Hillary speak out against racism or give a speech rejecting the votes from people who admitted they would not vote for a black man. Makes sense to me, since we all know that America has racism licked, as the clever little button above tells us. Read more here about the vendor who sold these buttons at a recent convention of the Texas Republican Party, which, to its credit, sent the guy packing.

Tom Tomorrow here

Click here to see the new Tom Tomorrow cartoon.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Remembering George Carlin

For reasons I don't know, I asked a friend over the weekend when the last time was she played a cassette. My friend, who is about 10 years younger than me, just sort of looked at me and said, "I think . . . think . . . I have an old cassette somewhere . . . maybe a B-52's album from high school."

Laughs from around the table . . . all from people 10 years younger than me, my wife and children excepted.

Of course, as the oldest person there, with the exception of my 263 year-old father-in-law, who, by this point in the conversation, had nodded off after polishing off more food than anybody else, I could go back further in time than the B-52's.

"I have three cassettes," I proudly announced. "'Cheech and Chong's Greatest Hits,' Richard Pryor's, 'That Nigger's Crazy,' and 'AM-FM,' by George Carlin. I have the album versions of these three gems, too, as well as some other of Pryor and Carlin's old stuff."


"George Carlin? Didn't he do the "Thomas the Tank" show for a while?" came one comment. Uh, yes he did, and so did Ringo and Alec Baldwin. From what I remember of the show, which I watched more than I wanted during my son's extraordinarily expensive and cult-like "Thomas the Tank" phase I think Thomas became sort of a post-rehab, reintroduction into mainstream society for many a fallen musician/actor/entertainer.

"Wait a minute," said another youthful miscreant. "George Carlin did the 'Seven Dirty Words' routine that went to the Supreme Court. Didn't we do that case in your class?" I remember when read the dirty words out loud and some people freaked out! That was my "Welcome to College moment."

"Wrong," said another. "That was your 'Welcome to Ivers' moment.

"You bet your ass it was," I responded. "The late 60s/early 70s were the best years of Carlin's career."

How strange, then, that not 24 hours after associating George Carlin with the ancient playback medium of the cassette tape and "Thomas the Tank" we would learn of his death at 71 from heart failure. My three favorite stand-up comedians of all time are Lenny Bruce, George Carlin and Richard Pryor, with 1960s era Woody Allen a close fourth. Woody might not, on first glance, appear to belong with that group, since he didn't really spend much time commenting on American social and political culture. But what all four men had in common was their devotion to literacy and language. Yes, they were observational humorists, but not in the Jerry Seinfeld vein, whose comedy picks up, in many ways, from where Bill Cosby left off -- fairly innocent, clever, open to all ages, well-delivered and, in the end, innocuous.

Bruce, Carlin and Pryor were anything but innocent and innocuous, and they were not open to all ages. I bought my first Carlin album without my parents' knowledge, although, as it turns out, they were thrilled that I was leaning towards social and political satire with a comedic edge rather than more conventional stand-up. My first Pryor album was actually an 8-track tape from a friend of my father's who I knew from my weekends hanging out in African-American neighborhoods near his store. I used to try to riff with some of the black guys at the newstand, but I had no game to match where these guys were coming from. It took George Carlin to point out to me the name of their game, "The Dozens," which he talked about on one of his albums. I can still remember his line:

"You wanna play the dozens?/The dozens is a game
But the way I fuck your momma is a goddamn shame."

I used that line once, and, from the initial stares I got I thought I was going to get the crap kicked out of me. Not at all. After about five seconds of silence, I got laughs and low-fives, which had recently replaced "giving skin" as the preferred African-American acknowledgment of doing or saying something good. Giving skin had recently been appropriated by white athletes, so that was now out.

"Here, man," said one guy, retrieving the 8-track from the car. "You're ready for this. You'll get it and laugh your ass off.

"Are you sure I should listen to this," I asked, pointing to the "That Nigger's Crazy" title.

"You're okay. You've hung out around here long enough to know what Richard's talking about. Go ahead and take it. Keep it."

In return, I gave him my Carlin album, which he "got," even though Carlin's stuff was less outwardly race-specific and more comprehensive in target-selection. Thinking about it, Carlin was arguably a precursor to "The Simpsons," which sticks it to everyone and, in its best moments, rarely misses.

George Carlin has been eulogized so far as a comedian who will be remembered for his distinctive literary style, which focused on so many absurdities of American life that it's impossible to canvass his career without missing something. I'm not so sure I think of Carlin (or Pryor or Bruce, for that matter) as a comedian. For me, he was a social and political satirist who happened to be funny as hell. Like Bruce and later Pryor, he made comedy an R-rated enterprise, junking his earlier career as a "Tonight Show"-worthy act in favor of something much more substantial and important. Listen to his early routines on Vietnam, divorce, the game show culture, the absurdity of classifying some words as "dirty" and other words as merely "offensive" even though they meant the same thing. One of his earliest and most memorable bits for me was his rank-ordering of profanity based on the perceived offense. My parents would ask me to first clean my "stuff" up, then, less patient, request that I stop leaving my "crap" all over the floor before finally . . . finally screaming at me to get this "shit" out of here or watch it end up in the dumpster. After I heard Carlin do this routine, including his immortal line, "can't fool me. Shoot is shit with two holes in it," I was hooked for life. Had he made his way into my house? Was he supplying my parents with these lines?

I had the privilege of seeing George Carlin once, in 1977 or 78, I think. He was almost an hour late coming on, but he made up for it with an extended and painfully funny performance. I can still remember the T-shirt he wore that night, "Front" on one side, "Back" on the other. Simple, obvious and right in front of us. Except, like almost everything else he noted and incorporated into his routines, he was the first to notice it and take it public.

George Carlin will not receive the equivalent of a state funeral, like the late Tim Russert of "Meet the Press" fame did last week after his sad and untimely passing. Yet, there is no doubt who will ultimately leave a greater and more lasting impact on American culture. Carlin redefined and broke ground in American social and political satire and forced Americans to take a much more honest look at themselves and the world they created and in which they lived. Russert, who was a nice man, devoted father and husband, hosted a television program that did little more than serve as a forum for various politicians to push their "talking points" or "spin" events to the public that, much more often than not, bore no resemblance to what really happened. Russert has been dangerously canonized by the corporate media and the Washington establishment precisely because he did not break the first rule of the Washington social contract: first, give and take no offense. Carlin did just the opposite, operating at the bare margin of mainstream American culture because he never hesitated to give offense or take it from people he never believed should be nearly as respected as they somehow managed to be. I could never imagine Carlin letting Dick Cheny, Scooter Libby or Karl Rove off the hook, as Russert (and all the Washington talking heads routinely do). Carlin would have skewered him in a way that would have made Jon Stewart look like Jerry Seinfeld (to whom he bears, at times, a spooky similiarity). In the end, to the extent that America holds its worst citizens and officials accountable for their bad, irresponsible and dishonest behavior, we should remember to thank Carlin for reminding us that politics is often an occupation for fools.

Red State Update

Jackie and Dunlap discuss the rumors about Obama on the Internet, high energy costs and Al Gore's electric bill.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Live Zeebop this week

Zeebop this week . . .

We play this Monday night, June 23rd, at La Ferme, the country French restaurant in Chevy Chase, Maryland, 7101 Brookville Rd., from 6.30-9.30 p.m. No need to order dinner to enjoy the atmosphere. You can enjoy wine, coffee and/or dessert.

We'll be there every Monday night through July 14th.

We play this Wednesday night, June 25h, at Pap and Peteys, located in D.C. at 5th and H Sts., NE, just a few blocks away from the Union Station metro. We'll play from 8-11 p.m. No cover, no minimum. Great place, cool atmosphere, diverse and friendly crowd. Join us.

We'll be there every Wednesday night in June and July.

Thanks to all of you who have come out to see us play. We appreciate the support. Thanks to our friend, Duke Cross, for making us the Wednesday night house band at Pap and Peteys.

Learn more about Zeebop by going to our website here. For our new site on MySpace, click here.

Friday, June 20, 2008

I'm voting republican!

Why, yes, come to think of it . . . I think I will vote Republican this fall. After all, there are soooooo many good reasons!!!!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

What the sign says; what the sign means

For my 15th birthday, I received two presents that I still have today: my Wilson A2002 baseball glove, which is still, in my view, the industry standard; and soft contact lenses, which, then, were a noticeable step up from the hard lenses that kept most of their wearers busy crawling around on gym, movie theater, basement and restaurant floors looking for them after they popped out in the middle of games, the part of the movie where you find out who killed whom or ended up getting the the girl or, worst of all, into a three-foot high Graphics bong? Really, who wanted their contacts back after that? Did you just absorb the loss as the cost of doing business? And what did you tell your parents . . .


"Dad, uh, I lost my contact last night after it fell out of my eye into Judd's bong. We were, like, listening to "Dark Side of the Moon," and when the alarm clocks went off at the beginning of "Time" I just jerked my head up right in the middle of a hit and, just like that, it fell right to the bottom. Can I get another one today?"

Or this?

"I was squinting to read the small print on the back of the Lysol bottle to see how much to dilute with water so I could mop the kitchen floor so you wouldn't have to do it, and my contact popped out and I couldn't find it, even after I had my friends come over and help me. I'm really sorry, and I'll pay for it."

Sometimes a stark choice is the best choice. You get to make a better decision that way. And you end up getting someone else to pay for your mistake.

No, I don't have the same pair of contact lenses I received thirty years ago. I've gone through many, many pairs since then, sticking to the same routine day-after-day, night-after-night -- removal, cleaning and storage. My favorite technological innovation has been the development of "multi-purpose" solution that removes protein every day so that you don't have to use those smelly pills that dissolved in saline solution so that your lenses could "soak" overnight, then wait four more hours so they could disinfect so that you could wear them. Messy and disgusting, this process discouraged more people than it encouraged. Good riddance.

But just the other day, while shopping at Giant for whatever my family demanded I make them, I saw something new on the label of the saline solution I've been using for decades.

"More Comfort; Same Quality"

This is disturbing on two levels. First, a need to "improve" a product means you are trying to make it better. If something is better, the quality goes up, not down. Nor does it remain the same. But that's nothing compared to this question: Just what the hell have I been putting in my eyes for thirty years? Granted, I never paid much attention to the "Thermisol-free" label, since I don't know what thermisol is, other than something that might cause brain damage, permanent scarring, a speech impediment or a birth defect so horrible that it has no name. Perhaps the thermisol explains the defiant, oppositional yet oh-so-sweet-I-have-dimples-so-you-can't-do-anything-to-me nature of my children.

Seeing labels like this makes me, prone to hypochondria anyway, feel like I should just find a couple of Coke bottles and make some glasses. Since my n'er do well father-in-law the optometrist decided to "retire" so he could hang out in my house, eat my food, boil his prunes, demand his laundry get done on a daily basis, all the while making the house wreak of moth balls and Vitalis (no, I didn't know they still sold that stuff either), I am going to have to start paying for my eye wear for the first time in 25 years. Why don't the manufacturers just tell us what these labels really mean?

Here's another one. My nine year-old teenage daughter insisted I buy her some whipped cream so that she could make an ice cream sundae for me. On the same day I learned that I had been putting poison into my eyes for the better part of my life, I found out that Cool Whip had redesigned the can so that it was, "Now, great new look, same great taste." This one's easy to decipher: "We've just made the container smaller while keeping the same price point. We're hoping that a little extra color will distract you from figuring this out." Same deal with all these new upside down plastic bottles of salad dressing, mustard, mayonaise: "No waste container" means smaller container with less product at the same price. Really, who hasn't figured out that you just turn the bottles over when you get to the bottom. Plus, with small tops, you can't scrape the insides as easily. So what happens? You end up wasting more."

Cereals are also guilty of disinformation like this: For years, Apple Jacks have been my favorite breakfast cereal or late-night post-sports/gig snack (How's that for fast living?). How heartbreaking was it for me to learn that it recently brandished this on the box: "New great taste!" What were they holding back? What's next? Do they just want to be friends with me?

And then there's always the environmentally conscious Proctor and Gamble, which has now reduced the size of its plastic laundry bottles because the detergent is now "2x" as strong. Use half as much for the same great clean. Good scam, this one. No one is going to use half as much detergent, for the same reason that people always fill both cups of the dishwasher so that their dishes can be "pre-cleaned," even though the instructions say something to the effect of "no rinsing necessary." Since we all know that "no rinsing necessary" means "if you don't want clean dishes don't rinse your plates," we do the same thing regardless of how often and loudly we're told we can change our whole approach to cleaning.

Golf equipment manufacturers have this down cold: "Do you want to play like Tiger Woods? Play the new Titleist nuclear powered golf ball and you'll enter Tigerland." No one will ever play golf like Tiger Woods for the same reason that no one played like him before hand. But don't tell that to the suckers that spend zillions of dollars per year on new clubs, shoes, balls, hats, bracelets, teaching aides and everything else that all promise to "add 10 yards" to your game. If that's the case, then even the world's worst golfers, who always used to play in front of me when I had the time to play goof, would drive the ball 510 yards and hit their 9 irons the same length as the less fortunate players hit their 3 woods. That's like me reading an article headlined, "Stay sexy like George Clooney." George Clooney and I are the same age. But, as it pains me to admit, he is much, much better looking, infinitely more wealthy, famous, suave -- an American James Bond -- than me. Other than some successful bizarre experiment, I have no chance of challenging George Clooney for the sexiest man alive. I can't match my 138 year-old father-in-law's routine, which consists mostly of drooling and pretending to forget his name so that attractive women will feel sorry for him and offer to take him home. One woman was so horrified to hear me tell a cashier in Panera recently that I tried to take him to the vet to have him put to sleep but, since the practice didn't accept Blue Cross Blue Shield, I wasn't able to do it, she offered to take him for the afternoon so that he could relax and get some rest. Oh, and he was just so "cute and sweet."

"New and improved." "Ergonomic handle for greater comfort." "Two times the cleaning power." "Experience the next level." "Cute and sweet."

In other words, "sucker."

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Tom Tomorrow here

Click here to see the new Tom Tomorrow cartoon.

Monday, June 16, 2008

The incomparable Tiger Woods

Normally, I don't root for the overdog (is there even such a word?). Some exceptions, though, do apply: the Beatles, Hank Aaron, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Earl Warren, Martin Luther King, Jr., John Coltrane, Bill Evans, the ultimate starting pitching triumvrate of Greg Maddux, John Smoltz and Tom Glavine during the Atlanta Braves 1990s run, Roy Haynes, Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin, for starters. There is something to admire about individuals who, no matter what their chosen field or occupation, are not content merely to get to the top. Once there, they maintain a determination to get better and better . . . not to defeat already defeated opponents, but to test themselves . . . to reach down into an inner-reserve that the rest of us don't have and keep mining their gifts of excellence through sheer determination. This is a lesson I try to impart to my students as they come through college: having a special gift will never mean as much as it can unless you work as hard as you can to maximize it. Having no special gifts of my own, I have always depended on determination and will rather than natural talent to get wherever it is I want (or have wanted) to go. My greatest frustration as a professor or youth coach comes when I have kids who want something for nothing, or look for shortcuts rather than invest in the work necessary to achieve a goal, or expect a parent or some other white knight to rescue them by attempting to bully me into making a decision that, I can guarantee you, I am not going to make unless it's something I want to do.

This is a (typically) long way of saying: let's add Tiger Woods to the list.

Sometimes it's hard to see in golf or any individual golfer the inspiration to do better or to tell a kid, "Do that!" I love the game, sport . . . whatever you want to call it. I used to play a fair amount in the B.C.-era (Before Children). Now, my golf outings are confined to an occasional trip to the practice range or, as is more usually the case, miniature golf on vacations. Even when I played semi-regularly, I always struggled with the privileged nature of the sport. I have never played a round of golf on a private course. I don't think I ever would, given my inherently hostile posture towards institutions of privilege, with country clubs near or at the top of the list. The golf tournaments I have attended over the years have simply reinforced my feelings. Golf clubs, by and large, pride themselves on their exclusiveness, and the people who belong to them tend to treat their guests as subservient house help who, for four days a year, are permitted to run the grounds, as long as they don't touch anything of value or come in the front door. I've never found much to identify with when I hear a golf announcer talk about how some khaki-clad country club boy endured the rough summers on exquisitely manicured grounds to "hone" his game, not coming home until he had holed 12 or 20 or 310 consecutive bunker shots. Hmmm . . . not quite the same as throwing a football through a tire, skating on ponds until dark, shooting hoops through wire baskets or attempting to beat out a double-play ball on a dusty field somewhere by sliding into second over and over again.

But watching Tiger Woods yesterday battle back to earn a playoff spot in the U.S. Open offered much more than just a great moment in sports. It should serve as a great inspiration to anyone who believes that good is just good enough. Here is an athlete with nothing to prove, who is, in my view, the greatest golfer ever, if not the most dominate athlete in any sport ever, determined to go to the mountain top . . . again. No one in the world can possibly dispute that Tiger is the greatest golfer since Tom Watson. The only real question is whether Tiger is his prime is better than Jack Nicklaus in his prime. Nostalgia among people my age (and older) is really the only force left to take Nicklaus over Tiger. Nicklaus had Arnold Palmer, Watson and Johnny Miller to push him. Tiger doesn't have anyone. And please don't say Phil Mickelson. Comparing Phil to Tiger is like comparing the Monkees to the Beatles . . . a manufactured media "rivalry" to maintain interest in a sport singularly dominated by one person.

Our whole family, including my father-in-law, who came to visit two months ago and now won't leave, watched Tiger's final nine holes. Time was pressing against my Sunday night hockey game, but I decided to wait until I thought the tournament was over to head out. After Tiger, who learned the game on military and public courses, one stroke down, drove his tee shot into a fairway bunker on the par 5 18th hole, I announced to my family, "Okay, that's it," and left. About an hour later, at the first-period intermission of my hockey game, our goalie, who was almost 10 minutes late, skated over and said, "Had I known we would play so well I would have stayed home and watched more golf." To which I responded, "So Rocco did it, huh?"


Tiger birdies the 18th hole by making a 12 foot putt, a putt than everyone watching, including his playoff opponent, Rocco Mediate, knew he would make.

So I did the dumbest thing a sports fan . . . or really, someone who has always watched and admired greatness . . . could do: I counted Tiger Woods out by assuming he was just like everybody else.

He isn't. And yes, Tiger has more achievements, money and fame than the rest of us could ever aspire to in a 100 lifetimes. Shouldn't that be reason enough to root for someone else? Normally, yes. Tiger Woods, though, isn't normal. Hobbling around on a recently operated-on knee, making shots that would embarrass even a bad amateur golfer, grimacing after routine shots, Tiger played with a determination that wasn't directed towards his opponent. Rather, he continued to test himself, to see if there was anything else left to summon and give, to see if had extracted every ounce of will and skill from his inner-self. By making that putt on 18, he proved that he was still in his own universe as an athlete and competitor. But Tiger also demonstrated to everyone else that we all have our own bottomless reservoir of talent and drive. All that he's asking us to do is summon it. Imagine how much better off we would all be if we did?

ADDED: . . . and he wins the U.S. Open on the first sudden death hole after an 18 hole playoff round against Rocco Mediate, who had him on the ropes over the last 3 or 4 holes. Tiger is simply incredible. I just cannot remember an athlete who was just so much better than everyone else.

Red State Update

Jackie and Dunlap believe that Obama and McCain can be friends on Iraq and in Iraq. Plus, enter a contest to win Jackie's truck.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Live Zeebop this week

Live Zeebop this week . . .

We play this Monday night, June 16th, at La Ferme, the country French restaurant in Chevy Chase, 7101 Brookville Rd., from 6.30-9.30 p.m. No need to order dinner to enjoy the atmosphere. You can listen to music and have a glass of wine, coffee and/or dessert.

We'll be there every Monday night in June and the first two Mondays in July, the 7th and 14th.

We play this Wednesday night, June 18th, at Pap and Peteys, located at 5th and H Sts., NE, just a few blocks away from the Union Station metro.

We'll play from 8-11 p.m. No cover, no minimum. Great place, cool atmosphere, diverse and friendly crowd. Join us.

We'll be there every Wednesday in June -- the 4th, 11th, 18th and 25th, and into July.

Thanks to all of you who have come out to see us play. We appreciate the support. Thanks to our friend, Duke Cross, for making us the Wednesday night house band at Pap and Peteys. And thanks to Alain Roussel, the owner of La Ferme, for hosting us again in June and July, with more dates for the fall (September 15th through October 27th).

Learn more about Zeebop by going to our website here. For our new site on MySpace, click here.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Our suicidal, ignorant and dangerous Supreme Court

In the 25 years or so that I've studied the Supreme Court as a student and professor, I've never seen the Court do what it did earlier today when it ruled that the United States cannot deny detainees held at Guantanamo Bay their constitutional right to appeal their convictions by military tribunals in the federal civil courts: knowingly issue a ruling that will kill more Americans.

Five years ago, when the Court invalidated a Texas sodomy law that punished consensual sex between same-sex partners, the justices irresponsibly pushed the United States down a path where sexual predators, even those who were not gay, could have a go at horses, cats, squirrels, rabbits (assuming they could catch them), the nice lady that works at the front desk at the public library, the kindly old gentleman that works as a greeter at Home Depot and, should the urge strike, masturbate in public.

That horrible decision came seven years after the Court ruled that Colorado had no right to tell advocates of traditional family values, which, according to the unofficial American cultural and political dictionary, are defined as activities between heterosexual couples or by heterosexual individuals, preferable Christian, that conform to the norms that one would expect of the L.L. Bean catalog if it came to life and encompassed all the erotic appeal of the Land's End swimsuit collection, that they could prevent gays and lesbians (and those who believe they have legal rights) from using the legislative process to secure laws protecting rights they surely do not deserve.

After all, after the Court had joined with the forces of our "abortion culture" to conspire with "abortion providers" to kill innocent babies, what could one reasonably expect from a liberal, activist, out-of-control cabal of justices determined to undermine traditional American values, such as state-sponsored Christianity, government-enforced racism, second-tier citizenship for women and minorities out numbered in the political process, the lack of representation for the criminally accused and the need for unconventional thinkers to keep their unconventional thoughts to themselves?

How do I know America is headed down a one-way street towards hell, determined to place its own citizens at risk while undermining the most cherished right of all in the American political tradition -- the right of those in the majority, preferably, white, Christian and politically, culturally and economically conservative to tell everyone else how they should live?

Because Justice Antonin Scalia, the only justice on the current Court who, besides maybe Justice Clarence Thomas, possesses the sole knowledge of the constitutional Framers' true and original intent, said so. According to Justice Scalia, he and only he understands -- again, with the possible exception of Justice Thomas -- what the Constitution means, and he and only he understands what Adams, Hamilton, Jay, Jefferson, Madison, Mason, Marshall and all the other official framers of the Constitution really meant when put together such phrases as, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion," or "The Congress shall have Power To . . . borrow Money on the credit of the United States," or "The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it," or "No State shall make or enforce any law [to] deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws." No other justice, save the equally dedicated Clarence Thomas, whose ancestors were permitted no say in the drafting of the original Constitution and most of its amendments, including those passed immediately after the Civil War that formally enfranchised black Americans -- free and enslaved -- has any clue what the Constitution means. So cavalier is their regard for their fellow citizens, especially the increasingly victimized class of white, Christian conservatives, that these justices, particularly Anthony Kennedy, who must -- must -- bear some family tie to Benedict Arnold, are willing to push the United States into anarchy for no other reason than to impress the Harvard law faculty and the editorial board of The New York Times. Just think about this for a minute: what possible constitutional rationale exists to extend constitutional rights beyond that small, powerless class of citizens who write our nation's laws, manage our political affairs, hold a disproportionate share of our wealth, chart our country's economic course, take the entrepreneurial chances that create our robust, dynamic and recession-proof economy, determine our cultural signposts and norms and decide if we should invade this country or that country? Remember what the great Alexander Hamilton said about the risks of democracy: there are the rich and well-born, and then there is the great unwashed populace, which doesn't really know its ass from its elbow (I'm paraphrasing here). There should be a permanent place for the first-class to control the idiotic temptations of the second-class (still paraphrasing) to ruin everyone else's good times. Give the same rights to everyone else and all you've done is accelerate the path to self-destruction.

Freakin' A, right!

So here we are, two days after the Court more or less gave the terrorist detainees at Guantanamo Bay, who have been held anywhere from six weeks to six years without knowing why they are being held, a get-of-jail-free card to start killing Americans. Before this decision, I thought the writ of habeas corpus permitted individuals being held in American jails to challenge their incarceration as improper. Not so. Now, when we grant an inmate the right to habeas corpus, we should go ahead and measure them for a new suit and some shoes to match, since they'll no doubt be on their way back into society. And they won't be getting jobs as grocery store baggers or living in halfway houses to ease their adjustment back into society. They will start killing Americans -- lots of them -- since we, the United States, are at war, as Justice Scalia was good enough to remind us, with radical Islam. For those of us who thought that we were at war with radical Christians at home, Justice Scalia's wagging finger is a reminder to us all of what the stakes really are. Of course, while the detainees -- all guilty as sin, otherwise why would they continue to be held without charges? -- have been vacationing at Guantanamo, getting their three squares and some much needed exercise per day, over 4,000 Americans have been sent to their death in Iraq, with tens of thousands more maimed and psychologically battered for life. Scores of Iraqis, who had nothing to do with the September 11th, 2001, attacks, have died in a war that should never have been fought. Our president believes we can only honor the dead by continuing to send more Americans to die on behalf of a cause that has no end goal, other than to create a permanent American presence in the Middle East which our host "ally" has said repeatedly it does not want. A free and independent Iraq, says President Bush, can only exist if Americans remain to ensure that whatever Iraqi governing authority the United States finds acceptable continues to do what the administration believes it should do, which is to keep doing what the administration believes it should do, whether the administration knows what it's doing or not.

Conservative lawyers quite rightly point to a Supreme Court that is "out of control," and hope that the American electorate will elect Republican presidential nominee John McCain, who called Boumedienne v. Bush “one of the worst decisions in the history of this country.” No doubt Senator McCain's trenchant analysis of the Boumedienne decision will give appeasers like Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama something to think about before they consider the consequences of turning the Guantanamo terrorists -- not accused terrorists, because there is no such thing -- loose on an unsuspecting American citizenry to rape, pillage and, of course, terrorize everyone and anything in its path. And since the same Justices who voted to strike down the Texas anti-sodomy law voted to release terrorists back into the wild, raping is certainly now without legal consequence, as is most likely the pillaging and terrorizing. What are these majorities of Republican-appointed justices thinking, assuming they are thinking at all?

God save this Honorable Court! . . . soon . . . or watch us all perish!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Numerology and its discontents

After Barack Obama clinched the Democratic nomination after last week's South Dakota and Montana primaries, mainstream pundits fully expected Hillary Clinton to concede the nomination to her opponent after word quickly leaked that she would give a public address on her campaign's status in Manhattan the following day.

She didn't.

Instead, she engaged in another unapologetic exercise in narcissistic self-love, insisting that she had really "won" the popular vote (which she didn't, unless you count Michigan and Florida, which both campaigns agreed last fall wouldn't count because of their decisions to flout the DNC's primary rules). Mortified that she lost the Democratic nomination to a young, appealing colleague in the Senate, Hillary continued to insist that she was the most qualified candidate in the race and would make the best president. On and on she went, so enamored with herself and awash in another round of self-pity, this time that her loss was due not to her limits as a candidate or anything she had said or done, but because she was a woman, that she used the pronoun "I" 64 times in her speech. The Democratic party's attention -- indeed, the nation's -- should have been on Obama's historic selection as the first American of African heritage to run for the nomination of a major political party and win, almost 45 years after last great stage of the African-American civil rights movement had turned the corner towards the great victories that would begin the long, slow and still-incomplete process of integrating blacks into the American mainstream. That would have required giving credit to where credit was due, and that simply is not Bill or Hillary Clinton's style.

By Saturday, though, she had recovered enough to give the best speech of her campaign -- poignant, graceful and articulate . . . maybe even (gulp) genuine? -- in which she officially conceded the Democratic nomination to Obama. Perhaps this was finally the real Hillary taking center stage -- strong, forceful, empathetic and respectful of her opponent while taking just the right amount of credit for her breakthrough campaign -- and not the manufactured, poorly-advised, inauthentic and tone-deaf candidate who went from Marie Antoinette to Annie Oakley to Erin Brokovich in the last six months on the campaign trail. Bill and Hillary still have much to account for in their choice of campaign tactics -- the stream of "poor-Hillary-if-only-she-weren't-a-girl" political eulogies flowing forth in the mainstream media notwithstanding -- especially the overt racial appeal that she made (and a complicit mainstream media let her get away with by shifting the burden to Obama to defend his "problem" with the "white, working class) to the HillaryBillies who freely admitted to exit pollsters that they were voting for her because she was white. At some point, Hillary should have said, "For those of you voting for me and/or against my opponent because he is African-American, let me be clear: I do not want your vote." That one, small gesture could have done much to repair her standing in the African-American community and among white voters that do not share her appetite for polarizing politics. But that's not where her votes were.

Still, over a week later, there is still a reluctance or perhaps unwillingness of so many mainstream commentators and "political experts" to come to grips with the Clintons' failure, Obama's success and the "anything goes" political landscape that awaits Obama and John McCain. Here are three myths that need a fresh look:

1. The Clinton dynasty is over. This is, for me, the most peculiar of the narratives that the mainstream political-media establishment has promoted over the last six months. Take this sentence from a New York Times piece on Hillary's Saturday concession speech:

"Yet while she emphasized its trailblazing nature as she exited the race, her campaign also represented a back-to-the-future effort to restore the Democratic dynasty of the 1990s that could never quite escape the past."

"Dynasty," like "genius," is one of the most overused words in American politics and culture. Win a couple of sports championships within a five or seven year period and you are, according to the sports media, a dynasty. The Ming reign in China lasted 300 years, a true dynasty. From 1957-1969, the Boston Celtics won 11 championships in 13 years, which, in the world of professional sports, qualifies as a dynasty. In American politics, the Kennedys are the only family that comes close to meeting the definition of a political dynasty, and that assumes that a dynasty is synonymous with the family business. Only one Kennedy has ever been elected president, and no other Kennedy has served in a major leadership position within the Democratic party since 1960. Yes, there are lots of Kennedys in politics, just as there were (the hopeful past tense) lots of Bushes in politics. But they hardly reigned supreme over the direction of American politics, and did little to create a dominate culture alternately feared, admired and respected by the subjects they governed.

Let's refresh our memory a bit. Bill Clinton, in two separate presidential elections, never won a majority of the popular vote, a feat unique among American presidents. In 1992, Clinton won 43% of the popular vote in a three-way race against George Bush and Ross Perot. Third-party candidates had challenged the Democratic and Republican candidates in the post F.D.R. era of American politics before the 1992 election, but no third-party challenger came close to the 19% of the vote that Ross Perot won at Clinton's expense that year. Running on the Bull Moose ticket in 1912, Theodore Roosevelt won 27% of the popular vote. Before Perot confirmed his candidacy (which he had abandoned once before the summer began) in September, Clinton's claim to the popular vote hovered at just over 50%, while Bush's floundered in the mid-30's. After Perot announced he was re-entering the race, Clinton began to lose votes to Perot, not Bush. So weak was Clinton's support in the states he won that, with the exception of Arkansas, he did not win a majority in a single state he won. Disenchanted Bush voters were looking for an alternative; Clinton, though, was not it. In 1996, Clinton won 49% of the popular vote as an incumbent, a dubious achievement matched by no other successful second-term president in 20th century American politics. Bob Dole won approximately 40% of the popular vote and Ross Perot, running again, won 8%. Over two elections, then, Bill Clinton never received a majority of the popular vote.

In 1994, the Democrats lost control of the House and Senate for the first time in 40 years. Every House Republican incumbent seeking re-election won; 34 incumbent Democrats running in the House lost, giving the Republicans a 54 seat swing in a presidential midterm election, a feat nearly without precedent in American political history. Democrats fared just as poorly in the Senate, losing eight seats to give the Republicans a majority of 52-48. Two Democratic senators switched parties, giving the Republicans two more seats before Republican Bob Packwood, a pro-choice moderate from Oregon, resigned after a sexual harassment scandal and was replaced by Democrat Ron Wyden. Republicans also picked up 12 governorships that year. Four years later, Bill Clinton was impeached over allegations that he perjured himself to government lawyers who were investigating whether he lied to them during testimony taken in conjunction with the Monica Lewinsky and Paula Jones scandals. By the time Clinton left office, Republican majorities were still in place in Congress. In 2000, his vice-president, Al Gore, lost to a relative political novice, George W. Bush. Say what you want about the Supreme Court's role in deciding the outcome of the presidential contest. In truth, Gore, had Bill Clinton's presidency been as "successful" as so many Clinton supporters claimed it was, should have run away with the 2000 race.

After Bill Clinton left the White House, he and Hillary decided to move to New York, where he could run whatever "business" he's been running since leaving the White House and Hillary could have the most visible platform from which to launch her new chosen career as a United States senator. Few other professional political spouses could have pulled that off. She had never run for elective office or held a senior appointed position in government at any level. She had more in common with political celebrities like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sonny Bono, who had made their names in show business, than she did with congressional veterans like Barbara Boxer, Diane Feinstein, Barbara Mikulski, Patty Murray or Nancy Pelosi. Since her election in 2000, Hillary has failed to distinguish herself as a legislator of distinction. Her efforts are mostly geared towards constituent service and small politics, like legislation to mandate the V-chip and school uniforms. On the biggest vote of her Senate career, Hillary joined with other re-election minded Democrats and Republicans and gave George Bush a blank check to cash on the Iraq war, a vote she has still refused to admit was wrong. And despite ever conceivable advantage in money, power, organization, favorable media and name-recognition, Hillary lost her bid for the Democratic nomination less than six weeks into the primary season. Yes, that's right -- she was out by the beginning of March. Her decision to stay in a race she could not win should not be confused with the epic Atlanta Braves-San Francisco Giants race for the 1993 NL West Division title, which the Braves won on the last day, with the two teams finishing with the best records in major league baseball.

The Clintons did not represent a "dynastic" era in American politics nor within the Democratic party. Democratic voters were waiting for someone other than Hillary Clinton to emerge with the intellectual and leadership qualities that they wanted fifteen years ago from Bill, not Hillary, but never got. Obama was the right person in the right place at the right time.

2. John McCain is a formidable, experienced candidate whose "moderate" posture will tempt independents to vote for him instead of the untested Obama. Oh, lord, when will the blues go away? Can we stop this now?!?! John McCain is not a moderate. John McCain is not a maverick, unless a maverick is defined as a conservative Republican who manages to persuade the establishment Washington media that his conservatism is really moderation cloaked in liberalism cloaked in moderation cloaked in bullshit cloaked in straight-talk cloaked in more bullshit. Until the Republicans begin their inevitable racially-coded campaign against Obama, John McCain will have to compete against a fresh, young and articulate opponent who will run circles around him. McCain's victory in the Republican primaries against perhaps the most undistinguished field to run for a major party nomination in the last 40 years seems to have given him a false sense of self. His decision to challenge Obama to what appears to be a series of weekly debates between now and the fall will backfire on him like an old car up on blocks in a HillaryBilly's front yard.

Contrary to a public perception fueled largely by an adoring establishment news media, John McCain is not George Washington, an immaculate hero summoned from retirement to steady a troubled nation. He is a career politician of little or no distinction in public life. John McCain wants to stay in Iraq from now until eternity. John McCain wants to appoint conservative justices to the Supreme Court. John McCain "welcomed" the endorsement of a preacher who compared Muslims to Nazis and called Catholicism a cult and has a view of women that makes Pat Buchanan look like Dr. Spock. John McCain is indistinguishable from Bill Clinton's 1996 Republican opponent, Bob Dole, another career Republican whose comfort level never extended past Capitol Hill. McCain has only one advantage heading into the general election . . . but it's a big one.

3. Barack Obama's historic achievement means that America has now entered a "post-racial" era. What world are these people living in? Approximately 25% of Democratic primary voters told exit pollsters they would not vote for a black man. And those are just the ones who admitted it. At no point was Hillary Clinton asked to give a speech explaining her (or Bill's) comments on race. Compare the standard held to Obama, who was asked to give a speech clarifying or repudiating just about every off-key comment he or anyone he had ever known had made during the primaries. That won't change during the general election. Unfortunately, America's original sin will float McCain's candidacy when, on the merits, he shouldn't get more than 40-45% of the popular vote or win any more states than Bob Dole did. But we shall see . . .

Tom Tomorrow here

Click here to see the new Tom Tomorrow cartoon.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Red State Update

Jackie and Dunlap on Hillary's exit and Scott McClellan's new book.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Live Zeebop this week

Zeebop this week . . .

We play this Monday night, June 9th, at La Ferme, the country French restaurant in Chevy Chase, 7101 Brookville Rd., from 6.30-9.30 p.m. No need to order dinner to enjoy the atmosphere. You can enjoy wine, coffee and/or dessert.

We'll be there every Monday night from June 9th through July 14th.

We play this Wednesday night, June 11th, at Pap and Peteys, located at 5th and H Sts., NE, just a few blocks away from the Union Station metro. We'll play from 8-11 p.m. No cover, no minimum. Great place, cool atmosphere, diverse and friendly crowd. Join us.

We'll be there every Wednesday in June -- the 4th, 11th, 18th and 25th.

Thanks to all of you who have come out to see us play. We appreciate the support. Thanks to our friend, Duke Cross, for making us the Wednesday night house band at Pap and Peteys.

Learn more about Zeebop by going to our website here. For our new site on MySpace, click here.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Hillary supporters for McCain

Here they come. No kidding.

I wonder if Hillary will offer Obama the vice-presidency tomorrow when she gives her concession speech, assuming she gives one. If not, perhaps she can join the casting call for McCain's V.P. I still think that's one unbeatable ticket.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

The Hillary-tanic finally capsizes

After nearly 18 months of campaigning, Hillary Clinton's quest for the American presidency has come to an end -- finally. To paraphrase Bob Dole, I know it, you know it, the American people know it, everyone knows it . . . except one person.

Hillary Clinton.

On a night when the Democratic party's eyes should have been on its presidential nominee, Hillary managed to turn enough attention on her to diminish Barack Obama's historic accomplishment. The party that gave birth to and supported, at a considerable electoral cost, the modern African-American civil rights movement -- a movement, by the way, that inspired women and other second-tier citizens to stand up for their rights against a Republican-dominated culture largely unsympathetic to their claims -- should have celebrated Obama's victory without distraction. Instead, Hillary, who lost this race three months ago, demanded that the cameras focus on her and her grievances. The right thing for Hillary to do would have been to concede the nomination to Obama, take responsibility for her own mistakes, reach out to the African-American community by apologizing for her deliberate injection of racial politics into the campaign and move forward by encouraging her supporters to work hard for the new nominee.

No, no, no . . . that would have been too much. Really, why would Hillary, who ran a campaign so personally degrading against a primary opponent that even the New York Times, which endorsed her in the primaries, admonished her to steer clear of the "low road" in campaigning against Obama, who repeatedly stated that her Republican opponent, John McCain, was more qualified to assume the presidency than her fellow Democrat, who lied repeatedly on the campaign trail about her "experience" and public record, who unnecessarily but not unintentionally introduced Robert Kennedy's tragic assassination 30 years ago as a reason for staying in the race, who manufactured so public personas over the last 4 months of her campaign that NIH scientists will probably have to name a new schizophrenia disorder after her, decide to take the high road, a road she couldn't find with Lewis and Clark at her side or a tour guide from AAA?

You know what? Let her supporters vote for John McCain. Let her supporters vote for a man who is a staunch opponent of reproductive rights. Let her opponents organize letter writing and email campaigns to put more justices like John Roberts and Sam Alito on the Supreme Court. Let her supporters for vote for a man who wants to continue the insane Bush doctrine of endless, unnecessary war. Let her supporters organize car pools so they can minimize their carbon footprint when driving their grandchildren down to register for the draft. Let her supporters vote for a man who will continue the Bush administration's policies of giving more money to the people who need it the least. Let her supporters vote for a man and party that has done little over the past 40 years to advance the cause of women's rights, whether in the workplace, the home or anywhere else. Let her supporters continue to blame everyone and everything but their candidate for losing a primary campaign she viewed as nothing more than a formality in January 2007, when announced she was "in to win." Let her campaign and professional staff continue to characterize Obama supporters as stupid, naive, uninformed and weak. Let those same people continue to insist that a candidate who could not win her own party's nomination is better positioned to defeat a Republican whose electoral base would no sooner crossover to her than spend an evening doing Crown Royal shots in a hunter's bar somewhere in rural Pennsylvania. Go ahead.

Better yet, take your campaign to Minneapolis and lobby Senator McCain to make Hillary his vice-presidential running mate. As the candidate of hard-working white people, Hillary could bring an important constituency into the McCain fold and effectively kill Obama's chances of persuading lower-income Americans that their best hope for a better future lies with the Democratic party. Rather than repair her relationship with African-Americans, a daunting task that Hillary, in my view, has no interest in undertaking, she could crossover to the Republican approach to "Big Tent" politics, which has plenty of room for black voters who are willing to subordinate their concerns about white race privilege and outright racism in America to the fairy-tale (oops! there's that phrase again) that all that stands between them and a materially prosperous life is a little hard work, elbow grease, "personal responsibility," sexual abstinence and a tuition voucher. Hillary Clinton is not going to be Barack Obama's vice-president, so let her take the consolation prize that give her supporters what they wish for -- a space on the ballot next to John McCain. They are a perfect match. McCain's bizarre reputation as a "maverick" is as much of a hoax as Hillary's "30 year record of experience and accomplishment" (Again, name one signature accomplishment of Hillary Clinton as a public citizen). This would be a different 2 for 1 than the inaugural Billary campaign of 1992. Two hoaxes for the price of one.

From this point forward, all that Hillary can do is continue to diminish the Democratic party cause by continuing to campaign for a nomination that voters, party elders, "superdelegates," . . . whomever, have told her they don't want her to have. Not because she's a woman, not because she's a victim but because she's Hillary Clinton.

* * * * * * * * * *

In January 2007, I predicted that Hillary Clinton would not win the Democratic nomination, even when she was 30 points ahead of her hypothetical competitors. You can read that post, "The Hillary-tanic sets sail," here.  You can read my posts on her low-road tactics on race here, here and here.

ADDED: Sure, I did get some parts of my prediction wrong on where Hillary's support would come from.  But I'm fairly certain that Hillary never imagined that she would become the candidate of the "white, working-class." Had she not had an African-American opponent, the odds are that she would have not manufactured her Blue Collar Mama act to find votes. 

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Tom Tomorrow here

Click here to see the new Tom Tomorrow cartoon.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Red State Update

Jackie and Dunlap discuss Cindy McCain's finances and strange goings-on in Italy on Red State Update.

. . . and a new comment on the presidential press secretaries who have served their country with honor and dignity.