Saturday, February 24, 2007

Simile Contest

Dick Cheney attacking someone's judgement is like George Bush attacking someone's pronunciation.

Defending McLaughlin

Mclaughlin has been under attack as of late and I think it is undeserved, however my previous post has left me somewhat embarrassed and in a position where it is harder to defend him. However after a couple of weeks watching the show I think I have some ammunition.

One example of an idea that would not have occurred to me if not for McLaughlin and his crew is that the most important and enduring impact of the Biden misquote of two weeks ago is that it may help Barack Obama establish his bona fides with the Black community despite his cultural distinctness (here, Black being used in a sense distinct from African-American as a reference to the descendents of African-American slaves) due to the common adversity symbolized by the misquote.

In the Open University piece linked above, Pat Buchanan is attacked as an anti-semite. This is a canard often repeated, and while I cannot remember the details of my past encounters, I do remember taking keen interest until the accusations evaporated into some statement falling well within the bounds of reasonable criticism of the US-Israeli relationship. Indeed, Buchanan’s tendency to stray into dangerous rhetorical territory is a quality I deeply admire. Raising the subject of hugely disproportionate representation of my fellow tribesmen in the US Congress when the topic is ethnicity and power in the US government is perfectly appropriate, though for reasons now obvious, dangerous.

And while reading Buchanan's Wikipedia entry to double check that my recollection of previous investigations into his supposed anti-semitism was correct, I was again impressed by the seeming prescience of his isolationist outlook in the context of Iraq. This “predictable” isolationist tendency is likely what led him to reveal another insight which would probably not have occurred to me had I not watched last night’s show: British withdrawal from Iraq would be a necessary precursor to aggression involving Iran. Obvious when you think about it, but not many do.