Bush just can’t find a

Bush just can’t find a defense for the tax cuts:

[Kerry] said he’s only going to raise the tax on the so-called rich. But you know how the rich is [sic], they’ve got accountants. That means you pay. That means your small business pays. It means the farmers and ranchers pay. That’s the wrong medicine for this economy, and we’re not going to let him prescribe it.

Notes on this speech:
1) Bush doesn’t know basic verb conjugations. But we already knew that.
2) Notice how Bush refers to the rich in the third person. Self-denial is not good leadership, Mr. President.
3) Most importantly, this makes no sense whatsoever. He claims that raising taxes on the rich, specifically people making over $200,000 a year, will hurt small businesses, farmers and ranchers, because rich people have accountants. According to the Labor Department, the median yearly salary for a farmer is $15,450. They’d have to make more than 1,300% more to have their taxes raised by Kerry. Likewise, the median yearly income for a rancher is $16,890. They’d have to make almost 1,300% more as well. Even the median income for chief executives, higher than that for just small business owners, of course, is $134,740, well under $200,000. So, even without considering his absurd comment on accountants, Kerry will by no means hurt farmers, ranchers or small businesses with his tax plan. And let’s not consider the accountant comment. I have been thinking for hours of how to write a criticism of it. But I just can’t. It’s just that stupid. You can’t try to use logical reasoning against a comment that’s just not logical.

Ouch. Brad DeLong just blasted

Ouch. Brad DeLong just blasted Gregg Easterbrook hard on physics. I had no idea that DeLong was so good with physics; I’m horrid with it myself, but from my limited knowledge (most of which comes from this movie, which I highly recommend) he sounds marvelous. And the sheer arrogance displayed by Easterbrook in his piece is extremely disappointing; I used to be a religious reader of his blog before it was closed down. He does have some claim to scientific expertise; the Brookings Insitution counts him as one of their Technology/Science experts. But his bashing of the big bang theory is weird bordering on nutty. Good job, Brad; it was a dirty job, but it had to be done.

Dear Glenn Reynolds, You have

Dear Glenn Reynolds,

You have made very clear over the last few months your fierce dislike (hatred?) of one Michael Moore. This is understandable: Moore is far to the left of you, and is to the left of even me. And Moore isn’t the most reliably accurate writer or documentarian there is (though by no means are Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, or Michael Savage any better). But comparing him to the leader of the National Alliance (“Full of hateful fiction, Michael Moore’s work is the Turner Diaries of the left”) is out of line. Moore has never called for the violent overthrow of the U.S. government, as William Pierce did. Moore has never planned out and glorified terrorist actions, let alone have those actions carried out. Moore is by no stretch of the imagination a racist, as Pierce was; if you’ve ever taken the time to see Fahrenheit 9/11, who’d notice that the first segment of the film praises the efforts of the Congressional Black Caucus to give the presidency to the winner of the popular vote. And to compare Moore’s criticisms of Israeli policy to the following vastly trivializes the actions and words of the world’s most famous neo-Nazi:

If the White nations of the world had not allowed themselves to become subject to the Jew, to Jewish ideas, to the Jewish spirit, this war would not be necessary. We can hardly consider ourselves blameless. We can hardly say we had no choice, no chance to avoid the Jew’s snare. We can hardly say we were not warned….

The people had finally had their fill of the Jews and their tricks….If the Organization survives this contest, no Jew will — anywhere. We’ll go to the Uttermost ends of the earth to hunt down the last of Satan’s spawn.

Whatever Moore has said about Israel, he has certainly never called Jews “Satan’s spawn”, and advocated, in effect, genocide against them. Hyperbole is a dangerous thing, Mr. Reynolds; you never know where it will lead you.


Slow blog day. But I

Slow blog day. But I did happen upon this little gem:

Political fund-raising group EMILY’s List “discriminates” against men and is trying to buy the Florida Senate race for Democrat Betty Castor, rival candidate U.S. Rep. Peter Deutsch charged Friday, just days before the group’s ads in support of Castor are scheduled to air.

EMILY’s List, a political fund-raising network which aims to elect Democratic, pro-choice women to public office, intends to begin airing the advertisements on Monday.

Hear that, Peter? Pro-choice women. And no, saying that you disagree with the group’s underlying premise is not a defense either:

“They don’t endorse men, regardless of their positions, period,” Deutsch said.

Guess why that is? IT DOESN’T MATTER AS MUCH FOR MEN. Men aren’t humanly able to have an abortion. Women have a much bigger stake in the issue. This is the lamest attack I’ve ever seen in a campaign. Yes, even lamer than this:

“My opponent has good intentions. But intentions don’t always translate into results. After 19 years in the United States Senate, my opponent has had thousands of votes but very few signature achievements,” Bush said.

After all, in some sick sense of the word, driving the nation shoulder-deep into debt, alienating key European allies, and destabilizing a country the size of California, are accomplishments.

I haven’t been blogging the

I haven’t been blogging the convention, firstly because I’m not there, secondly because I was traveling when it started, and thirdly because I haven’t seen most of it. The only part I’ve seen live is the most important part: Kerry’s speech. My reaction was mixed. Some of it was the same old Democratic boilerplate made popular by Daschle and his ilk, which just makes me sick. The prescription drug coverage, outsourcing, and patient’s bill of rights lines all felt this way: just plain fake. That was frankly disappointing. And there were plenty of easy targets, such as Enron, the Saudi Royal family, et al. But much of the speech showed remarkable candor. Kerry addressed common criticisms head on, and ripped them to shreds. But the content of the speech was hurt significantly by Kerry’s delivery. I hate to say it, but our nominee wouldn’t know timing if it bit him in the face. Not once did he allow the audience to applaud him without interruption. And the speech just felt awkward coming out of him. Overall, a solid, but badly delivered, speech.

We’ve lost a great mind:

We’ve lost a great mind:

Francis H. C. Crick, co-discoverer of the structure of DNA, the genetic blueprint for life, and the leading molecular biologist of his age, died Wednesday night in a hospital in San Diego. He was 88.

He died after a long battle with colon cancer, said Andrew Porterfield, a spokesman for the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, where he worked.

Francis Crick was probably the most underappreciated man alive. For some reason, he was hugely overshadowed by Watson. Even the NYT Headline was “Crick, Who Discovered DNA Structure with Watson, Dies”. But I’ve always preferred Crick, partly because of the wise, sophisticated air to him, and partly because Watson was such a jerk to E.O. Wilson. Crick was a great scientist, a great thinker, and, above all, a great man. He will be sorely missed.

Well, gee whiz! Remember when

Well, gee whiz! Remember when The New Republic said that a senior al-Qaeda operative would be captured or killed in Pakistanduring the Democratic convention? It’s happening:

Pakistani security forces have captured a high-level al Qaeda operative who was on the FBI’s most-wanted terrorist list in connection with the 1998 U.S. Embassy bombings in Africa, Interior Minister Faisal Saleh Hayat said Thursday.

Hayat said Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani, who the FBI lists on its Web site as being born in Zanzibar, Tanzania, was captured in a raid in central Pakistan “a few days back.”

Via Pandagon. I’m not surprised that they’d try to pull this kind of thing. What I did think is that they’d decide to screw national security and not arrest anyone, because if they did, the TNR piece would come up, and a scandal would ensue. But instead, they chose to hurt the administration’s image, while delivering a blow to al-Qaeda. It’s win-win!

Only in the Bush Administration:

Only in the Bush Administration:

A campaign worker for President Bush said on Thursday American workers unhappy with low-quality jobs should find new ones — or pop a Prozac to make themselves feel better.

“Why don’t they get new jobs if they’re unhappy — or go on Prozac?” said Susan Sheybani, an assistant to Bush campaign spokesman Terry Holt.

Wow. They managed to offend both the unemployed and the clinically depressed in one sentence!