Sunday, November 12, 2006
I had forgotten that the airline is unique in having an operating procedure that doesn't call for assigned seating. Your boarding pass simply designates a particular section on the plane to occupy. No big thing, although I usually prefer a window seat and work to secure one in advance.
Anyway, what's fascinating about this is the way it plays out. Because there isn't an assigned seat for the passengers, people start lining up at the gate early, presumably to get the best seat in the house, whatever that is. Think of it as festival seating at a concert (without the deaths).
This flight lasted approximately 50 minutes. To get a "good seat," some passengers waited in line for an hour and a half.
Now, I may be missing something here, but unless there are dancing girls and free champagne (I waited with eager anticipation; it wasn't offered in the section in which I sat), there's not a seat on a plane worth standing in line 90 minutes for.
But to each his own.
The plane went up. It came down. I live to tell the tale. No complaints from me.
This, of course, goes to the now-infamous macaca affair. George Allen's "misstep."
Spotlight singed the Allen campaign
Senator who skillfully ran earlier campaigns became the issue
By Peter Hardin, Times-Dispatch Staff Writer
Washington - -- Sen. George Allen suggested that Democrat Jim Webb and his team enjoyed "the prevailing winds" that led the challenger to victory and, in turn, a Democrat-controlled Senate.
But Allen's own missteps and his campaign's responses contributed strongly to the breathtaking fall on Election Day of a rising Republican star. (link)
Let me pose a question. If in Bill Clinton's day, the Washington Post had run 100 articles and editorials on Juanita Broaddrick's allegation that she had been raped years before by our president, and every newspaper in the country had chimed in with similar stories, exploring every innuendo, giving ink to every crackpot who ever had a related tale to tell, analyzing the troubling implications of the dastardly act ad nauseum, etc., would the citizenry have turned against him? Of course. But the Post refrained. Something about journalistic integrity.
But the Post found it acceptable to run 100 articles and editorials on the subject of macaca and its implications of racism and bigotry.
Anyone who thinks the active effort on the part of the Post and most every other newspaper connected to the commonwealth to promote the macaca story, to blow it completely out of proportion (it wasn't even a word prior to Allen's utterance), and, in doing so, to derail the Allen campaign, didn't in itself bring about Allen's defeat, is blind.
Sour grapes? Think what you will. But more importantly, let this be a lesson for those of you in the GOP who are contemplating running for high office in the future. Your Democratic challenger will not be your primary opponent. That reporter, with pencil in hand and a license and eagerness to destroy, will be your worst enemy. You would do well to prepare accordingly.
Don't take my word for it:
THE DEMOCRATS: IS WINNING WINNING?There you go. It was never about Iraq. Or Medicare. Or the economy. It was about winning. And about the next election. And the next. And the next ...
By Joe Trippi, Writing in the Washington Post
Wham! The 2006 midterm elections are over, and the modern conservative era has come to an end.
For the Democrats, a party so long on the outs, it feels good to be back in power. But we can't just revel in yesterday. Democrats have to start looking now to maximize our mandate for the 2008 presidential election. (link)
LET'S BAN ALL RELIGION, ELTON SAYS... said the aged rock star, with all the compassion of Vlad The Impaler.
November 12, 2006 -- London - Organized religion fuels discrimination against gay people and other groups, Elton John said yesterday.
"Religion promotes hatred and spite against gays," the singer and songwriter told The Observer's Music Monthly Magazine.
"I would ban religion completely. Organized religion doesn't seem to work. It turns people into really hateful lemmings - and it's not really compassionate." (link)
It's the drugs. It has to be the drugs.
Let the Investigations BeginYou deserve every bit of this.
By Stanley Brand, Writing in the New York Times
THE Democrats’ victory has stoked the fire beneath an already brewing debate within the party regarding the need for investigations of the executive branch during ... (link)
God, am I glad you're gone.
From the soon-to-be-ex-senator and forever beanbrain:
Holding to the Center, Losing My SeatChafee asks a simple question:
By Lincoln Chafee, Writing in The New York Times
Last Tuesday, I was one of the many moderate Republican casualties of the anti-Bush virulence that swept the country.
[blah blah blah] ... I was startled to hear the vice president dismiss suggestions of compromise and instead emphasize an aggressively partisan agenda
I was incredulous. Instead of a new atmosphere of cooperation and civility which, after all, had been the promise of the Bush-Cheney campaign, we seemed ready to return to the poisonous partisanship that marked the Republican-Congress — Clinton White House years. (link)
Despite my having voted against the Iraq war resolution, my reputation for independence, the editorial endorsement of virtually every newspaper in my state, and a job approval rating of 63 percent, I did not win. Why?Yes. With all that going for him, how on earth was he defeated? It could indeed be that Chafee was caught up in the anti-Bush wave that swept the USA. Or, as is actually the case, a whole mess of citizens saw him for what he is - a nitwit.
Go home, man. You've embarrassed us enough.
So now that they've put that bunch in charge, and there's no reason for the Democrats to answer questions on that or any other subject, the editorialists want to know. A day late and ...
Democrats and Iraq"Americans are waiting to hear ..." Expect that to become a lament. But don't expect answers from the Democrats.
The Democrats will not be able to savor their victory for long. Americans are waiting to hear if they have any good ideas for how to get out of Iraq without creating even wider chaos and terrorism. (link)
This would have made for a great editorial a month ago. "Americans are waiting to hear if they have any good ideas ..." Today, however, they - and we - are stuck with the idealess gang they helped elect.
God help us all.