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Archive Edition for   Saturday, January 8, 2005Go to Current Page
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Quoted in this edition:

Ace of Spades HQ
The Age
  Ann Althouse
  Andrew Sullivan
Angry Bear
The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler
Associated Press
  Ron Fournier
  Albert Aji
  Will Lester
  Larry Margasak
  Marty Lederman
Balloon Juice
  John Cole
Begging to Differ
  Steve @BeggingToDiffer
  Kriston @BeggingToDiffer
Belmont Club
Betsy's Page
  Betsy Newmark
Boston Globe
  Janette Neuwahl
Brad DeLong's Semi-Daily Journal
BrothersJudd Blog
  Orrin Judd
Business Week
  Jeff Jarvis
Captain's Quarters
  Captain Ed
  Rickheller @Centerfield
  MWS @Centerfield
Chicago Tribune
  Mark Silva
  Arthur Chrenkoff
CJR Campaign Desk Home
  Thomas Lang
The Claremont Institute
  Ken Masugi
The Corner
  Jonah Goldberg
  John Hood
  Lambert @Corrente
  The Farmer
  Jason Van Steenwyk
Daily Kos
  Armando @DailyKos
  Damian Penny
Dean's World
  Joe Gandelman
Des Moines Register
Editor and Publisher
  Dave Astor
Electablog* U.S. Ambassador to Cyberspace
  David Allan Pell
Gut Rumbles
Hit and Run
  Matt Welch
Houston Chronicle
  Glenn Reynolds
  Joanne Jacobs
The Left Coaster
  Steve Soto
The Liquid List
  Oliver @LiquidList
  Shawn @LiquidList
Little Green Footballs
  Charles Johnson
Los Angeles Times
  Ronald Brownstein
The Mahablog
  Barbara O'Brien
Matthew Yglesias
  Matthew Yglesias
Media Matters for America
  David Brock
Media Notes Extra
  Howard Kurtz
Michelle Malkin
  Michelle Malkin
The Moderate Voice
  Joe Gandelman
  Nathan Newman
National Review
New York Post
  Niles Lathem
New York Times
  David D. Kirkpatrick
  Nicholas D. Kristof
  Tom Burka
  David Brooks
  Richard Brookhiser
  Steven Erlanger
  Edmund L. Andrews
  Bob Herbert
No More Mister Nice Blog
  Steve M.
Off the Kuff
  Charles Kuffner
Oliver Willis
  Oliver Willis
One Hand Clapping
  Donald Sensing
Opinion Journal
  Thomas Sowell
Opinions You Should Have
  Tom Burka
Outside The Beltway
  James Joyner
  Josh Chafetz
Pacific Views
  Magpie @PacificViews
  Ezra Klein
  Pejman Yousefzadeh
The People's Republic of Seabrook
  Jack Cluth
  Steven Taylor
  Jayson @PoliPundit
The Poor Man
  The Poor Man
Power Line
  The Big Trunk
  Greg Ransom
  Steve Bainbridge
Questions and Observations Blog
  Jon Henke
  Cori Dauber
  Carol Giacomo
  Martha Graybow
Right Wing News
  John Hawkins
The Rittenhouse Review
  James Martin Capozzola
Roger L. Simon
  Roger L. Simon
Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Seattle Times
Secular Blasphemy
  Jan Haugland
Seeing The Forest
  Dave Johnson
  Brad @ShrillBlog
The Sideshow
  Avedon Carol
  Laura Kipnis
Steve Clemons
  Steve Clemons
Steve Gilliard's News Blog
  Steve Gilliard
Suburban Guerrilla
  Susan Madrak
Taegan Goddard's Political Wire
  Taegan Goddard
Talking Points Memo
  Josh Marshall
  Jeralyn Merritt
  Garance Franke-Ruta
  Matthew Yglesias
  Radley Balko
This Modern World
  Tom Tomorrow
Tim Blair
  Tim Blair
  Ogged @Unfogged
USA Today
  Greg Toppo
  Ann Oldenburg
The Volokh Conspiracy
  Juan Non-Volokh
Wall Street Journal
  Jess Bravin
War and Piece
  Laura Rozen
The Washington Monthly
  Kevin Drum
Washington Post
  Howard Kurtz
  Jim VandeHei
  Al Kamen
  Ceci Connolly
Washington Times
  Jon Ward
Weekly Standard
  Frederick W. Kagan
Will Wilkinson / The Fly Bottle
  Will Wilkinson
  Jay Tea
  Kevin Aylward
World O'Crap

TV Host Says U.S. Paid Him to Back Policy
  By / NYT   —   Permalink 
Armstrong Williams, a prominent conservative commentator who was a protégé of Senator Strom Thurmond and Justice Clarence Thomas of the Supreme Court, acknowledged yesterday that he was paid $240,000 by the Department of Education to promote its initiatives on his syndicated television program and to other African-Americans in the news media.
Josh Marshall: The Times today has an article running-down the Armstrong Williams flap.
Steve M.: The New York Times says that "the arrangement ... started in late 2003" — long after NCLB was signed into law (January...
Joe Gandelman: P-E-R-I-O-D. NEWS UPDATE: According to the New York Times, the government distributing "new" without telling people its...
Joanne Jacobs: Update: The General Accounting Office decided recently the government can't distribute videos promoting its policies without identification, reports the New York Times.
Rickheller @Centerfield: Government Propaganda — That the US government was subsidizing a conservative talk show host is outrageous.
Tom Tomorrow: A peek behind the curtain — You've most likely seen this by now, but it's really quite extraordinary: the White House...
Also: KJL, Ann Althouse

It's Time to Spray DDT
  By / NYT   —   Permalink 
If the U.S. wants to help people in tsunami-hit countries like Sri Lanka and Indonesia - not to mention other poor countries in Africa - there's one step that would cost us nothing and would save hundreds of thousands of lives.
It would be to allow DDT in malaria-ravaged countries.
Betsy Newmark: Nicholas Kristof is brave enought to say that the U.S. and other donor countries need to start helping malaria-infected parts of the world by spraying some DDT.
Juan Non-Volokh: Fight Malaria with DDT: Nicholas Kristof writes in today's NYT that it is "Time to Spray DDT."
Greg Ransom: CAPTAIN ED gets results — Nicholas Kristof endorses the use of DDT.
Captain Ed: Well, kudos to Nicholas Kristof, because in his very next column, he answers my challenge.
Michelle Malkin: BRING BACK DDT — Bravo for New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof, who calls today for DDT to be sprayed in malaria-ravaged countries.
Orrin Judd: It's Time to Spray DDT (NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF, 1/08/05, NY Times) [snipped quote] Quite good except for repeating the...
Also: Steve Antler

Newt Gingrich Considers Presidential Run
  AP   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON — Newt Gingrich (search) is taking steps toward a potential presidential bid in 2008 with a book criticizing President Bush's policies on Iraq and a tour of early campaign states.
Joe Gandelman: Newt Gingrich is putting out feelers, and not the kind Bill Clinton put out in the Oval Office: "WASHINGTON — Newt...
Juan Non-Volokh: Gingrich for President?!? Despite my conservative and libertarian leanings, this strikes me as a supremely bad idea.
Avedon Carol: Via Memeorandum I see Newt Gingrich hinting at a presidential run, and even the wingers don't seem too happy about the idea.
Jonah Goldberg: GINGRICH FOR PRESIDENT? I'm exhausted already.

Atheist sues to ban hand on Bible
  By / Washington Times   —   Permalink 
The California lawyer who tried to have the phrase "under God" removed from the Pledge of Allegiance now wants to legally prevent President Bush from placing his hand on a Bible while being sworn in at his inauguration.
Joe Gandelman: Just when you think he MIGHT be satisfied that he got all the publicity and public repudiation that he craved, the...
Jan Haugland: I'm an atheist, and I think this is going too far: The California lawyer who tried to have the phrase "under God"...
Jayson @PoliPundit: Idle Time, Idle Minds — Does the entire far left of the country's political spectrum need medication and psychotherapy?
Damian Penny: Newdow's at it again — Michael Newdow, the guy who sued to remove "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance, has...
KJL: NEWDOW, THE PLEDGE GUY, IS BACK — He's suing to keep Bush's hand off a Bible on Jan. 20 (Not in the way that would make Barbara Boxer and co. most proud though).

  By / New York Post   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON — Iraqi officials have recently implicated more U.N. staffers in bribe taking during the oil-for-food program in a development that could dramatically escalate pressure on the world body, The Post has learned.
Charles Johnson: UN Corruption Exposed — At the New York Post, new revelations of massive bribery in the United Nations' Oil-For-Food...
Acidman: Gimme a break. Want corruption and bribery? The UN has it. Want blithering idiocy? The UN has its supporters.
Betsy Newmark: More bad news for the UN. [snipped quote] I'm just shocked, shocked to hear that there is corruption at the UN.
Jan Haugland: UNSCAM update: UN staff took oil-for-food bribes — More accusations against UN staff: Iraqi officials have recently...
FrancoAlemán: AND THESE GUYS think they have the only moral outsanting to lead and take control of the billions in aid for the tsunami?

Fighting the Wrong War
  By / Weekly Standard   —   Permalink 
He has, in fact, consistently and vociferously opposed congressional attempts to offer such aid. In February 2003, he declared, "we will come back and ask for an end-strength increase at any moment that we believe it is in the interests of the armed forces.
Donald Sensing: Next comes Frederick W. Kagan's Weekly Standard essay, "Fighting the Wrong War."
Brad @ShrillBlog: Frederick Kagan of the Weekly Standard Succumbs to Shrill Unholy Madness!
McQ: Rumsfeld, Iraq and the future — Frederick Kagan has an article in the Weekly Standard which bears reading.
Andrew Sullivan: WHY RUMSFELD MUST GO: Fred Kagan sums it up eloquently.

Enviro Wackos Rejoice Over Tsunami Devastation   —   Permalink 
For most observers the South Asian tsunami disaster appears to be one of the most devastating tragedies in modern history.
But some environmentalists are actually celebrating the tidal wave that killed nearly 200,000 people, saying it rid the coastal area of development and other forms of human contamination.
Ace: What else can explain them claiming to want to help the poor people of the world, and yet cheerleading natural disasters?
Michelle Malkin: What a selfish pig. (Hat tip: Newsmax)

Newt Gingrich Open to Presidential Run
  By / AP   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON - Newt Gingrich is taking steps toward a potential presidential bid in 2008 with a book criticizing President Bush 's policies on Iraq and a tour of early campaign states.
Taegan Goddard: Gingrich Considers Presidential Bid — Newt Gingrich "is taking steps toward a potential presidential bid in 2008 with a...
Lambert @Corrente: Wingers will eat their own — Great news! [snipped quote] Um, what about the Bush mandate? UPDATE Oh, wait, Gingrish is just self-shilling his new book.

Kerry Meets Syrian President, Says He Is Hopeful Strained U.S.-Syrian Ties Can Be Improved
  By / AP   —   Permalink 
DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) - Former Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry met Saturday with Syria's president and said he was hopeful that strained U.S. -Syrian relations could be improved, provided Washington seized "a moment of opportunity" currently available in the Middle East.
B.C: Kerry Visits Syria; Gets Post-Election Endorsement — Senator Backstabbing Traitor (D-MA) visited Syria The Ba'athist...
Jonah Goldberg: WHY.... Is John Kerry meeting with the president of Syria?

U.S. paid pundit to push program
  By / Chicago Tribune   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Education Department, which promotes President Bush's No Child Left Behind Act as its hallmark education reform, acknowledged Friday that it paid $240,000 in taxpayer money to a syndicated newspaper columnist and television commentator to promote the program.
Joanne Jacobs: When the story came out, Tribune Media Services dropped Williams as a syndicated columnist.
Jeff Jarvis: Williams — a syndicated columnist dropped by Tribune Media Services because of this — also has a TV show.

Militants Kidnap 3 Senior Iraqi Officials
  AP   —   Permalink 
BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) — Militants abducted three senior Iraqi officials, beheaded a man who worked for the U.S. military and killed at least four others, officials said Saturday, a day after a U.S. general warned that insurgents may be planning ''horrific'' attacks ahead of Jan. 30 elections.
KJL: IN IRAQ — The bad guys continue to try to stall the elections: [snipped quote] It will get worse. But don't delay.
Lambert @Corrente: Make up your own jokes! [quote] "[BUSH] I know it's hard but it's hard for a reason," (via AP)[end quote]
Steven Taylor: More Violence in Iraq — Via the NYT: Militants Kidnap Three Iraq Officials [snipped quote] I fear the same: that this is...

Proposed law aims to protect janitors
  By / Boston Globe   —   Permalink 
Margarita Restrepo's husband lost his job as a janitor when the business where he worked changed hands and decided it wanted a different company to vacuum the floors and empty the trash. With just one hour's warning, he lost his job, his health insurance, and was left without any job prospects.
Steve Bainbridge: What is the Social Function of the Board of Directors — One of the longest standing debates in corporate law is the...
Jay Tea: Screw it; I'm gonna move to Massachusetts and become a janitor — Yesterday, the Boston Glob reported on a hearing over a new law being proposed in Massachusetts.
Nathan Newman: In Massachusetts, state legislators are proposing a law that would require companies that change hands to keep janitors...

Wolfowitz Says He Will Keep Job At Pentagon
  WaPo   —   Permalink 
Deputy Defense Secretary Paul D. Wolfowitz sought yesterday to dampen speculation that he is leaving, saying he had been asked to stay on and intends to do so.
A leading proponent in the administration of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, Wolfowitz has been a lightning rod for critics of the American involvement there.
James Martin Capozzola: (0) DISCUSSION | SHARING THE LOVE The Neoconservatives' Infatuation with Rumsfeld Proving Midge "Beach Boys" Decter...
Kevin Drum: WOLFOWITZ FOREVER....Despite rumors to the contrary, Paul Wolfowitz will be staying on as Deputy Secretary of Defense.

Washington Week in Revue
  By / NYT   —   Permalink 
AS the 109th Congress convened this week, the news media once again turned their attention to Washington. Here are some stories they may have missed.
Alberto Gonzales, the White House lawyer nominated for the post of attorney general, has told colleagues that he fears further harsh treatment in the Senate.
Dave Johnson: Blogger Tom Burka, in NY Times, The New York Times > Opinion >Washington Week in Revue.
Tom Burka: "Waves happen," Mr. Rumsfeld told survivors. This and other stories here.

Let Congress Lead
  By / NYT   —   Permalink 
Here are five observations about the politics of Social Security reform:
First, many Republicans will be loathe to back a bill that has no Democratic support. They don't want to transform a big, popular program without bipartisan cover.
The Poor Man: And I'm going to start now: Wanker. [UPDATE: And "honky". I know we've already got a word for "honky", but people forget sometimes.
Orrin Judd: FROM NEOCON TO NEOCONOMIST: Let Congress Lead: Social Security reform plus tax reform would go a long way toward getting to an ownership society.

Was Lincoln Gay?
  By / NYT   —   Permalink 
THIS book is already getting noticed. In ''The Intimate World of Abraham Lincoln,'' C. A. Tripp contends that Lincoln had erotic attractions and attachments to men throughout his life, from his youth to his presidency.
Taegan Goddard: A New York Times review of The Intimate World of Abraham Lincoln by C. A. Tripp notes the book contends the 16th...
Ann Althouse: (And Richard Brookhiser doesn't think much of the new Lincoln-was-gay book.)

Palestinian Ballot Presents Quandary for Hamas
  By / NYT   —   Permalink 
GAZA, Jan. 7 - The boys from Hamas were busy ripping down the placards to put up a message of their own, under the snapping green flags of Islam.
But their message was not about Sunday's presidential election; it was a commemoration of a Hamas hero, Yahya...
Charles Johnson: NYT Whitewashes Fatah — In this article, the New York Times describes the origin and goals of the Palestinian Fatah gang: Palestinian Ballot Presents Quandary for Hamas.
Orrin Judd: REROUTING OF THE STREAM: Palestinian Ballot Presents Quandary for Hamas (STEVEN ERLANGER, 1/08/05, NY Times)...

Rolling back bad taste
  Des Moines Register   —   Permalink 
A 65-year-old Wal-Mart greeter has been fired for greeting customers with a computer-generated photograph of himself wearing nothing but a Wal-Mart sack.
Dean Wooten was fired in September from his job as a greeter at the Muscatine Wal-Mart store where he had worked for seven years, state records show.
Jack Cluth: Another DUMB@$$ AWARD wiener — Rolling back bad taste: A Wal-Mart worker showed a photo of himself wearing only a sack.
Joe Gandelman: Some People Don't Qualify To Be Rocket Scientists.... .....or even to work at Walmart's.

Administration Paid Commentator
  By / WaPo   —   Permalink 
The Education Department paid commentator Armstrong Williams $241,000 to help promote President Bush's No Child Left Behind law on the air, an arrangement that Williams acknowledged yesterday involved "bad judgment" on his part.
James Martin Capozzola: (0) DISCUSSION | THAT LIBERAL MEDIA Conservative Pundit on the Take The detestable Howard Kurtz comes through today...
Josh Marshall: Now that Armstrong — Williams has recognized that his acceptance of a quarter million dollars to shill for the No Child...
Joe Gandelman: "His syndicate, Tribune Media Services has dropped his column. His show, The Right Side with Armstrong Williams, will probably be canceled, too."
Captain Ed: Paying Journalists For Coverage Stinks — The blogosphere buzzed yesterday with the revelation that pundit Armstrong...
Steve Soto: Update: Howard Kurtz reports in a Page One in Saturday's Post that Williams is paying a price for his conflict of interest and is taking some shots as well.
Taegan Goddard: And one television network dropped his program pending an investigation," the Washington Post reports.
Also: Richard TPD

Pentagon's Wolfowitz Says He Staying in Bush Team
  By / Reuters   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, a leading architect of the Iraq war, said on Friday he had been asked to remain in the Bush administration and will do so.
The Farmer: Paulie Jug Ears To Hang On To Life A Little Longer — Startling life altering confession from Paul Wolfowitz: Pentagon's...
Laura Rozen: [Thanks to E for the heads up. ] Saturday Update: Wolfowitz says he's staying. But the rumors that he's leaving persist.

U.S. Said to Hold More Foreigners in Iraq Fighting
  NYT   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON, Jan. 7 - After raids in recent months that captured hundreds of insurgents in Iraq, the United States has significantly increased the number of prisoners it says are foreign fighters, a group the Bush administration contends are not protected by the Geneva Conventions, American officials said.
Cori Dauber: The very first paragraph of this mornings lead article, headlined (in both online and print editions) "U.S. Said to Hold...
Steven Taylor: Foreign Fighters in Iraq — Via the NYT: Captured Insurgents: U.S. Said to Hold More Foreigners in Iraq Fighting...

Bush Paints His Goals As 'Crises'
  By / WaPo   —   Permalink 
President Bush had great success in his first term by defining crises that demanded decisive responses. Now, as he begins a second term, Bush is returning to the same tactic to accomplish three longtime conservative goals.
Steve Soto: Post Nails Bush For Crisis Mentality In Pursuing Political Goals — Jim VandeHei of the Washington Post runs a...
Kevin Drum: CRISIS MANAGEMENT...This would have made an excellent blog post, but instead it's an excellent article by Jim VandeHei...
Taegan Goddard: The Crisis Tactic — President Bush "had great success in his first term by generating a sense of crisis that demanded...

Armstrong Williams Column Axed by TMS
  By / Editor and Publisher   —   Permalink 
NEW YORK Tribune Media Services (TMS) today terminated its contract with columnist Armstrong Williams, effective immediately. But Williams told E&P tonight that he plans to continue his feature via self-syndication.
SLZoll: This was my favorite part of the Editor & Publisher story on the matter: How many of his nearly 50 newspaper clients does he think will keep the feature?
John Hawkins: Williams, who had his columns dropped by Tribune Media Services over this, said that, "This has been a great lesson for me.
Susan Madrak: UPDATE: Williams was just fired by the syndicate that handled his column.
Atrios: Williams Column Axed by TMS — Link: NEW YORK Tribune Media Services (TMS) today terminated its contract with columnist Armstrong Williams, effective immediately.
Taegan Goddard: The Bush administration defended the contract as "advertising." Editor and Publisher has more.

Conspiracy Theories Surrounding the Tsunami: It was a Punishment from Allah for Celebrating Christmas and Other Sins; It was Caused by the U.S., Israel, India
  MEMRI   —   Permalink 
Following practically all international events of importance, conspiracy theories are raised in the Arab and Muslim worlds. This occurred most recently following the Asian tsunami. Some of these conspiracy theories focused, as they often do, on allegations that it was a plot by the U.S. and Israel.
Cori Dauber: If these governments had any intention of giving substantial sums of money, they wouldn't give over their airwaves and...
Arthur Chrenkoff: Wasn't like that in my family: Sheikh Fawzan Al-Fawzan, a professor at the Al-Imam University in Saudi Arabia confuses...

Jobs Picture Shows Some Signs of Life
  By / NYT   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON, Jan. 7 - Employment climbed at a steady if not spectacular pace in December, suggesting the economy is on a solid footing but that employers in many industries are still cautious about hiring.
Steve M.: OK, first the good news: Jobs Picture Shows Some Signs of Life ...The Labor Department reported on Friday that the...
Jason Van Steenwyk: And how do the numbskulls at the New York Times cover it?

Tensions rise as UN and US try to deliver aid
  Telegraph   —   Permalink 
Relief officials speak of frustration at lack of co-operation as American helicopters bring out the wounded. Richard Spencer reports from Banda Aceh
Tension surfaced yesterday between the United Nations and the American military on the front line of the biggest relief operation since the Second World War.
Tim Blair: So will US officials in the region, who are becoming ever more frustrated with our moral superiors: [quote] "Look around and...[end quote]
Wretchard: "— The Daily Telegraph" The Indonesians forgot to fill out the UN form advising them they needed to complete an Indonesian form in Indonesia.

Administration Agitprop
  WaPo   —   Permalink 
"IT WAS BAD judgment." That was the response of Armstrong Williams, television commentator and pundit, when we asked yesterday whether he had, as alleged in a USA Today story, accepted $241,000 of government money in exchange for promoting the Bush administration's No Child Left Behind education reform legislation.
Steve Soto: And the Administration is taking some shots from the Post over its repeated use of taxpayer resources for propaganda.
Oliver Willis: Washington Post On Payolagate — Payolagate The Bushies are deflecting the real issue here. [snipped quote] 1.

Mankiw's Magic
  NRO   —   Permalink 
The White House economist talked big jobs numbers — and he was right.
Friday's job report shows that White House economist Greg Mankiw was very nearly right when he projected almost a year ago that jobs could rise by 2.6 million in 2004.
PGL: Kudlow and the Atlanta FED on Labor Force Participation — Brad DeLong ridicules the latest cheerleading from Lawrence Kudlow.
Betsy Newmark: Larry Kudlow pays tribute to Gregory Mankiw. [snipped quote] At what point will it become accepted wisdom that lowering tax rates strengthens the economy?
DeLong: The National Review Clown Show Continues... Wearing the makeup, the rubber nose, and the oversized shoes, Larry Kudlow...

Armstrong Williams on the Defensive
  CNN   —   Permalink 
ANNOUNCER: CROSSFIRE. On the left, James Carville and Paul Begala; on the right, Robert Novak and Tucker Carlson.
KJL: Here's Paul Begala on Crossfire, questioning Armstrong Williams: "Do you think that — what do you think your friends on...
The Poor Man: Paid In Full — Check out the nifty little move Armstrong Williams pulls off here on Crossfire: [snipped quote] Way to take a bullet there.

Education Dept. paid commentator to promote law
  By / USA Today   —   Permalink 
Seeking to build support among black families for its education reform law, the Bush administration paid a prominent black pundit $240,000 to promote the law on his nationally syndicated television show and to urge other black journalists to do the same.
Magpie @PacificViews: You've undoubtedly heard already about how pundit Armstrong Williams was paid US $250,000 to promote Dubya's 'No Child Left Behind' education 'reforms'.
Joe Gandelman: "He got busted today, for accepting $214,000 from the Bush administration to use his platform to sell the Black community on the No Child Left Behind Program."

White House paid commentator to promote law
  By / USA Today   —   Permalink 
Seeking to build support among black families for its education reform law, the Bush administration paid a prominent black pundit $240,000 to promote the law on his nationally syndicated television show and to urge other black journalists to do the same.
John Hawkins: I find this to be bizarre... "Seeking to build support among black families for its education reform law, the Bush...
James Joyner: In related news, Education Dept. paid commentator to promote law (USA Today) "Seeking to build support among black...
Garance Franke-Ruta: Today's breathtaking USA Today revelations that conservative commentator Armstrong Williams was being paid by the...
Steve M.: Regarding the report that right-wing commentator Armstrong Williams was paid by the White House to advocate the No Child...
Howard Kurtz: Well, the Bush team has found one way to get good press coverage, according to USA Today: "Seeking to build support...
Thomas Lang: USA Today broke the news: "Seeking to build support among black families for its education reform law, the Bush...
Also: Steve Soto, Michelle Malkin, Josh Marshall, Richard TPD, Chris Bowers, Ezra Klein, Jonah Goldberg, Mark Kleiman, Betsy Newmark, Taegan Goddard, The Farmer, David Allan Pell, Susan Madrak, Ed Cone, Kos @DailyKos, Oliver Willis, Matt Welch, Atrios

New York Times Mulls Charging Web Readers
  By / Reuters   —   Permalink 
NEW YORK (Reuters) - The New York Times Co. (NYT.N: Quote, Profile, Research) is considering subscription fees to the online version of its flagship newspaper, which now is available for free, but it has no immediate plans to do so, the company said on Friday.
Pejman Yousefzadeh: CHARGING READERS FOR ONLINE ARTICLES — This news story is somewhat disturbing: [snipped quote] I agree with Kevin Drum...
Ogged @Unfogged: Pony Up, Blogger — This would certainly change things.
Kevin Drum: Reuters adds this observation: [snipped quote] For all the big talk in the blogosphere, if this happened it would pretty much spell the end of political blogging.
Joe Gandelman: You May Have To Pay For The New York Times' Online — This just in: you may soon have to pay for the New York Times'...
Roger L. Simon: The Rules of the Online Game — Called me unsurprised that The New York Times is mulling putting the web version of its...
DeLong: Paying for News Content — Ogged observes: [snipped quote] You have to be of Financial Times or Wall Street Journal...
Also: Orrin Judd, Betsy Newmark, KJL

Dead voted in governor's race
  Seattle Post-Intelligencer   —   Permalink 
At least eight people who died well before the November general election were credited with voting in King County, raising new questions about the integrity of the vote total in the narrow governor's race, a Seattle Post-Intelligencer review has found.
The Big Trunk: The spirit of Mayor Daley has resurfaced in the state of Washington, where the evidence that the deceased of King County...
KJL: DINO ROSSI WENT TO COURT YESTERDAY to contest the election where dead people voted, among other things.
John Hood: Also, some number of dead folks crossed over in the county to exercise (or perhaps exorcize) their democratic prerogatives.
Captain Ed: If you're from Seattle, you can vote for dead relatives as well. (And don't forget to demand recount after recount until your candidate wins, either.)
Steve Bainbridge: "(Link)"
James Joyner: Dead Voted in Washington Governor's Race — Dead voted in governor's race (Seattle Post-Intelligencer) "At least eight...
Also: Taegan Goddard, Pejman Yousefzadeh, Jerome Armstrong, Orrin Judd, Smash, Greg Ransom

Pundit got $240,000 to pitch education reform
  By / USA Today   —   Permalink 
Seeking to build support among black families for its education reform law, the Bush administration paid a prominent black pundit $240,000 to promote the law on his nationally syndicated television show and to urge other black journalists to do the same.
Joe Gandelman: White House Paid A Commentator To Argue Its Case — No matter how you slice it, dice it, and try to finesse it , in...
Kevin Drum: Because USA Today has confirmed via a Freedom of Information request that the Department of Education has been paying...
Charles Kuffner: Dude. Wouldn't it be more cost effective to just pay Armstrong Williams for a few columns?
Kriston @BeggingToDiffer: Matthew Yglesias: "In an even sleazier replay of last year's revelation that taxpayer money was going to pay for TV ads...
The Poor Man: Bought — Lovely: "Seeking to build support among black families for its education reform law, the Bush administration...

The Future Of The New York Times
  Business Week   —   Permalink 
Publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. has his hands full: Weaker earnings. A changing media world. A scandal's aftermath. He also has an ambitious business plan
Since 1896, four generations of the Ochs-Sulzberger family have guided The New York Times through wars, recessions, strikes, and innumerable family crises.
Vanderleun: Chock full of information hard to find in one place "The Future Of The New York Times" sets out the decline in the Gray Lady's fortunes in some detail.
Kevin Drum: BLOGS AND THE MEDIA....Business Week reports that the New York Times is vaguely considering moving to a subscription model for their website.
Donald Sensing: [quote]Chock full of information hard to find in one place "The Future Of The New York Times" sets out the decline in the Gray Lady's fortunes in some detail. [end quote]

Hillary Clinton's Campaign Finance Director Indicted   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON — Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's former finance director has been indicted on charges of causing false campaign finance reports to be filed with the Federal Election Commission, the Justice Department said Friday.
Captain Ed: Hillary's Bagman Gets Invite To Club Fed — In a blow to her presidential aspirations and possibly her re-election run...
James Joyner: Hillary Clinton's Campaign Finance Director Indicted — Hillary Clinton's Campaign Finance Director Indicted (WNBC-AP)...
Steve @BeggingToDiffer: I'll refrain from passing judgment on the entire Democratic Party, but since we are on the subject of ethics, it is...

Leaders view tsunami devastation
  CNN   —   Permalink 
(CNN) — High-ranking international officials have toured regions hardest hit by the Indian Ocean tsunamis to see firsthand the devastation that has prompted one of the world's biggest relief efforts.
Arthur Chrenkoff: 14. The dumbest rhetorical question of the year: goes to Kofi Annan touring Aceh: "You wonder where are the people?
Kevin Aylward: [Link] We're live in the world of tomorrow, unfortunately our computers don't do windows or babysit as predicted.

David Brock's letter to Staples, Inc. on Sinclair
  By / Media Matters for America   —   Permalink 
It has come to my attention from press reports today that Staples, Inc. contends that Media Matters for America misrepresented Staples' decision not to renew advertising on local news programming on Sinclair Broadcast Group stations as of January 10, 2005.
Jon Henke: UPDATE: This is how Media Matters will respond... "As you may know, Staples, Inc. officials reviewed, edited, and...
Captain Ed: Their latest release calls Staples' clarification into deep suspicion: "As you may know, Staples, Inc. officials...
Oliver Willis: David Brock's letter to Staples, Inc. on Sinclair "As you may know, Staples, Inc. officials reviewed, edited, and...
Atrios: MMFA to Staples — Since the trolls have been bugging us about this, here's David Brock's letter to the CEO of Staples:...
Joe Gandelman: Media Matters Letter To Staples: They Did Pull Sinclair Ads — Now it appears as if Staples may have done corporate CYA...

Butt out: Fox nixes Super Bowl backside ad
  By / USA Today   —   Permalink 
A year after Janet Jackson's breast brought a crackdown on indecency, Fox has rejected an ad for the Super Bowl offering a rare view of another celeb: Mickey Rooney's backside.
Fox has rejected a Super Bowl ad featuring a Mickey Rooney wardrobe malfunction.
Joe Gandelman: I never would have survived THIS ONE: "A year after Janet Jackson's breast brought a crackdown on indecency, Fox has...
McQ: A big "Thank you" to Fox — I'm not a prude or anything and certainly have no objection whatsoever to a flash of...
Radley Balko: UPDATE: On the other hand, of Bozell's activism is responsible for keeping Mickey Rooney's bare ass out of my living room it can't be all bad.

The changing Supreme Court   —   Permalink 
Two of the U.S. Supreme Court's most liberal justices - Sandra Day O'Connor and John Paul Stevens - are on the verge of retirement. Chief Justice William Rehnquist, 80, is undergoing treatment for thyroid cancer and unlikely to return to the bench.
Joe Gandelman: "Along comes Armstrong Williams, a black conservative commentator who was given a fat check by the Bush Administration to..."
Tbogg: We shouldn't be too surprised by Williams penchant for payola, just check out one of his recent columns: The changing...

Wolf at the Door
  By / WaPo   —   Permalink 
There was buzz early in the week that Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and Deputy Defense Secretary Paul D. Wolfowitz had seen President Bush and informed him that Wolfowitz would be leaving and that Rummy wanted a big-time corporate type to be the new deputy.
Laura Rozen: The WaPo's Al Kamen reports that Wolfowitz is leaving too: [snipped quote] Big time corporate type for the deputy...
Lambert @Corrente: Here, Beltway Dem! Here, boy! Fetch! Heel! Unbelievable: [snipped quote] Oh?
Taegan Goddard: Wolfowitz Will Stay On — Responding to a rumors that he was leaving, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, [snipped quote] the Seattle Times reports.

Bush Lawyers Target Gun Control's Legal Rationale
  By / WSJ   —   Permalink 
Readying for a constitutional showdown over gun control, the Bush administration has issued a 109-page memorandum aiming to prove that the Second Amendment grants individuals nearly unrestricted access to firearms.
Taegan Goddard: Bush Seeks Showdown Over Gun Control — The Bush administration "declared that the Second Amendment confers a broad...
Glenn Reynolds: THE WALL STREET JOURNAL (free link) reports on the Bush Administration's second-term Second Amendment stance.
Jayson @PoliPundit: This Won't Make the Far Left Happy — The Bush Administration thinks the gun control debate is a Constitutional matter,...

Sinclair Notes Staples Has No Policy Against Advertising in Sinclair News Programming
  PRNewsWire   —   Permalink 
BALTIMORE, Jan. 7 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Sinclair Broadcast Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: SBGI - News) is pleased to note that in a press release issued on January 6, 2005 and as posted on their website (, office supply retailer Staples, Inc....
Steve Gilliard: You better not e-mail anyone or we'll sue — You want cat blogging, you got cat blogging Atrios posted this Sinclair Makes Threats [snipped quote] Oh, bulls**t.
Atrios: Sinclair Makes Threats — Link: Although Sinclair respects the rights of these organizations to voice their opinions, we...

Promoting Torture's Promoter
  By / NYT   —   Permalink 
If the United States were to look into a mirror right now, it wouldn't recognize itself.
The administration that thumbed its nose at the Geneva Conventions seems equally dismissive of such grand American values as honor, justice, integrity, due process and the truth.
Deacon: 98-pound weaklings — The column by Bob Herbert about Alberto Gonzales the "torturer" that Rocket Man included in his post "Briar Revisited" is unusually revealing.
Barbara O'Brien: And when you've finished the Krugman column, read today's column by Bob Herbert.
Orrin Judd: HE SOUNDS LIKE LUCILLE LA VERNE: Promoting Torture's Promoter (Bob Herbert, 1/07/05, NY Times) [snipped quote] Anyone...
Hindrocket: Likewise, Times columnist Bob Herbert lays it on thick, calling Gonzales "the enabler in chief of the pro-torture lobby"...
The Farmer: Promoting Torture's Promoter, by Bob Herbert -Jan 7, 2004 "Alberto Gonzales, the nominee for United States attorney general, has already shamed us."
Armando @DailyKos: Bob Herbert Tells Some Truths — My last one, and tomorrow is a travel day for me, so I leave you with Herbert, who tells you what you need to know: [snipped quote] What he said.
Also: KJL

Voting by dead people isn't always a scam
  Seattle Times   —   Permalink 
Days after his wife of four decades died of liver cancer, Robert Holmgren came home to find her absentee ballot. He filled in Charlette Holmgren's intended votes for Dino Rossi and George W. Bush, forged her signature, and mailed her ballot along with his.
Kevin Aylward: The 10 Spot - Headline Edition — Ten headlines that you may have missed...Four-Year-Old Boy Alive After Being...
Taegan Goddard: However, the Seattle Times notes "voting by dead people isn't always a scam."

U.S. Dec budget posted surplus - Congress analysts
  Reuters   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON, Jan 7 (Reuters) - The U.S. government ran a $1 billion budget surplus in December, helped by a rise in corporate tax payments, the Congressional Budget Office said in its latest budget report released on Friday.
Ace: Corporate Tax Receipts Up; December in Surplus — A billion here and a billion there and pretty soon you're talking...
Betsy Newmark: Here's a nice bit of economic news. That is what happens when the economy starts growing.
Orrin Judd: U.S. Dec budget posted surplus - Congress analysts (Reuters, 1/07/05) "The U.S. government ran a $1 billion budget...

AP Poll: Americans Ambivalent About Bush
  By / AP   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON - The American public is deeply ambivalent about President Bush as he begins his second term and his approval rating is lower than any recent two-term presidents, a troubling sign for his ambitious agenda, an Associated Press poll found.
Ezra Klein: But, But, He Said... Whither your mandate , oh Bush? [snipped quote] Can you imagine what the Republican Congress would have done to Clinton if he'd had these sorts of numbers?
Taegan Goddard: Public Still Split on Bush — "The American public is deeply ambivalent about President Bush" and his approval rating is...
Steve Soto: Bush's approval rating is down again to 49%. What political capital? What mandate?

Sen. Clinton's Ex-Finance Chief Indicted
  By / AP   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON - Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton 's former finance director has been indicted on charges of filing fictitious reports that misstated contributions for a Hollywood fund-raising gala for the senator, the Justice Department said Friday.
Captain Ed: The AP's Larry Margasak gives a better explanation than WNBC about why the lower figure matters: "The indictment, rare...
Ken Masugi: Sen. Clinton's Ex-finance Chief Indicted — Ordinarily campaign finance stories aren't worth reading, but here's an...

Senate Judiciary Committee Confirmation Hearing
  NYT   —   Permalink 
The following is the transcript of the Senate Judiciary Committee's hearings on the nomination of Alberto R. Gonzales to be attorney general as transcribed by Federal News Service.
Marty Lederman: Note, as well, that in yesterday's hearing Judge Gonzales was very careful to qualify his statement that "[i]t has...
John Cole: With those definitions in mind, lets peruse the questioning of Gonzalez by the Senior Senator from Massachusetts:...
Shawn @LiquidList: Politics: Gonzo Eyed — You can read the reporting, or read the transcript, but it's not quite the same as watching the Gonzales hearings on TV.

Drug Control Office Faulted For Issuing Fake News Tapes
  By / WaPo   —   Permalink 
Shortly before last year's Super Bowl, local news stations across the country aired a story by Mike Morris describing plans for a new White House ad campaign on the dangers of drug abuse.
Oliver Willis: A Criminal Pattern — Payolagate The Bush administration has shown an alarming habit of using the people's money to pay...
Matt Welch: GAO Denounces Gov't "Covert Propaganda" — Stories in The Washington Post and
Thomas Lang: First, the Washington Post reports that the Office of National Drug Control Policy stole a page out of HHS' playbook and...

Think Rushmore
  By / Opinion Journal   —   Permalink 
Now that President Bush has twice gotten himself to the White House, the question is whether he wants to try for Mount Rushmore. One of the luxuries of a second term is an opportunity to think about the long run, not simply for one's own "legacy," but for the future of the nation as a whole.
Josh Chafetz: OF IRONY: In the course of a fairly vapid* op-ed in today's WSJ, Thomas Sowell writes: [snipped quote] Oh, I get it!
Greg Ransom: THOMAS SOWELL — what lies ahead.

Don't pillory the rescuers
  The Age   —   Permalink 
Members of the coalition of the willing are leading tsunami relief, writes Tony Parkinson.
It takes unusual Schadenfreude - not to mention a heart of granite - to clamber over the corpses of 150,000 tsunami victims in order to make a rhetorical point about war in Iraq.
Tim Blair: MOONBAT WRONGNESS SLAMMED — Noting the facts of Australian, Japanese, and US aid to post-tsunami Asia, The Age's Tony...
Orrin Judd: "RHYMES WITH IDIOT" FILES: Don't pillory the rescuers (Tony Parkinson, January 8, 2005, The Age) [snipped quote] It's not called the Axis of Good without reason.

Feds paid pundit to push Bush policy
  AP   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Bush administration paid a prominent black journalist to promote President Bush's education law and give Education Secretary Rod Paige media time, records show.
PGL: It seems AP and CNN have finally decided to run the story: [snipped quote] So the Bush Administration has cross this line before.
Oliver @LiquidList: Politics/Media: State-Run — Ready, Set, Totalitarianism.

Drop capital murder charges against Yates
  Houston Chronicle   —   Permalink 
Clear Lake stay-at-home mom Andrea Yates, who drowned her five children in the bathtub, was a diagnosed delusional schizophrenic who suffered from postpartum depression before the drownings. Medical experts documented her continuing mental illness after her conviction and imprisonment.
Charles Kuffner: UPDATE: Missed the Chron editorial calling for a plea bargain. Via Ginger.
Jeralyn Merritt: Reaction to Andrea Yates Decision — Today's Houston Chronicle. See also, Drop Capital Murder Charges Against Yates.

Jeb Bush Hires Writer Who Left Paper After Sex-Harassment, Plagiary Charge
  Editor and Publisher   —   Permalink 
NEW YORK Just days after Florida Gov. Jeb Bush fired a top official over sexual-harassment allegations, Bush's office confirmed it has hired Lloyd Brown, former editorial-page editor of the Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville, who resigned from the paper in November following public allegations of sexual harassment and plagiarism.
Lambert @Corrente: ISO Conservative Commentator (No Pros Please!) Hey, it looks like Jebbie's got no problems hiring his fluffers, so why can't his Big Brother get His act together?
Steve Soto: Jeb Hires A Winner — Apparently, hiring bad people runs in the Bush family.

Bush Optimistic About Iraq Vote Despite Warnings
  By / LAT   —   Permalink 
WASHINGTON-President Bush today rejected a sharp warning that the election scheduled this month in Iraq could further inflame the conflict there and said it would be "such an incredibly hopeful experience for the Iraqi people."
Steve Clemons: Here is a follow-up article just posted on the LA times website by Brownstein on George Bush's reaction.
David Allan Pell: President Bush countered by explaining that he is very optmistic about "such an incredibly hopeful experience for the Iraqi people."

Scowcroft Skeptical Vote Will Stabilize Iraq
  WaPo   —   Permalink 
Brent Scowcroft, national security adviser for President George H.W. Bush and a leading figure in the U.S. foreign policy establishment, said yesterday that he has grown pessimistic about prospects for stability and democracy in Iraq, a view increasingly expressed by other foreign policy figures in both parties.
Steve Clemons: In addition, here is a different article in the Washington Post that ran in today's newspaper by Dana Priest and Robin Wright that mentions the event and comments made.
MWS @Centerfield: The Establishment is bailing — According to the Washington Post, foreign policy realists are increasingly losing faith in the idea that a good outcome is possible in Iraq.

Navel Gazing
  By / Slate   —   Permalink 
America's obsession with fat is increasingly colonizing the cultural imagination, and not just on sadistic reality-TV diet shows like The Biggest Loser. There's also been a lot of fat on the New York stage lately.
Matthew Yglesias: Level Up, Level Down — Laura Kipnis reveals that she is not only against love, but apparently opposed beauty as well.
Will Wilkinson: Laura Kipnis: [snipped quote] Wouldn't you think that if heterosexuality is your Achilles heel, you're in big, big trouble.

  New York Post   —   Permalink 
So much for the new, moderate — dare we say centrist — Hillary Rod ham Clinton.
Yesterday she lined up with her party's moonbat "They-Stole-Ohio" caucus to headline the first formal congressional challenge to a presidential election since 1877 — only to see the effort, in equal measures baseless and slanderous, fail spectacularly.
Charles Johnson: NY Post Absorbed by the Blog — I think this may be the first appearance of the term "moonbat" in mainstream media: Hillary loses her way.
Jayson @PoliPundit: I Didn't Know that Darth Hillary Ever Found Her Way — The attached editorial says that Hillary {gulp} Clinton "lost her...