So my costume choices were complicated this year. My roommate and I were going to go as Winston Churchill and Franklin Roosevelt, etc., but then we decided that getting me a wheelchair would be (a) necessary and (b) very offensive. Then him, me, and another one of my roommates were going to be the three costumes from the “Never Gonna Give You Up” video (trenchcoat and black shirt, denim, and tweed), but that turned out to be too expensive. Finally, we wanted to be Preston Brooks and Charles Sumner, because I have an outsized love of Radical Reconstruction and my roommate’s considerably shorter than I am. But then when realized it’s hard to look like 1850s politicians and that we didn’t have time to memorize the relevant dialogue.

Then today I had a revelation: I’m going as Rashid Khalidi. I’ve been growing the mini-beard steadily over the past month, and other that that, a jacket and pants, and a copy of The Iron Cage, there’s not much to the get-up. So yeah. Rashid Khalidi. It’s going to be awesome.


Because all the cool kids are doing it. Here’s my most optimistic, total landslide scenario:

Even though Louisiana and South Dakota are now dead heats, I don’t think this is too likely to happen. Conversely, here’s the worst-case, McCain win scenario:


Suffice it to say, that won’t happen either. So here’s my actual prediction:


Optimistic? Sure. But I’ve been consistently more optimistic about this campaign than most, and I’ve been consistently been proven right. There’s no reason to end that streak now. All maps courtesy of 270towin.com.

“My Name Is My Name!”

Via Megan, it seems that the Washington Post has published an entire article about Elizabeth Edwards and Ezra’s discussion on health policy that (a) focuses entirely on the “OMG her husband cheated” angle rather than actual, you know, policy and (b) manages to never mention Ezra’s name. Between this and Ariel Levy’s and Elaine Lafferty‘s seeming difficulty with saying Ann Friedman’s name, I’m starting to think there’s some kind of establishment media role against mentioning TAP staffers by name. This cannot stand:

Can She Kick It?

I’ll have more to say about this tomorrow, but I went to a Lykke Li concert at Paradise tonight and she closed her encore with a cover of “Can I Kick It?”. Really. It wasn’t the only cover – she also did “Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa” and “After Laughter Comes Tears” – but man was it the best. When she started humming the bass line I thought she was going to do “Walk on the Wild Side” but then she started rapping and I realized the awesomeness to which I was bearing witness. Here’s her doing it at a show in Glasgow, just to give a sense of what went down:

Here’s the setlist:

  • “Melodies & Desires”
  • “Dance, Dance, Dance”
  • “Let It Fall”
  • “I’m Good, I’m Gone”
  • “My Love”
  • “Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa”
  • “Little Bit”
  • “Complaint Department”
  • “After Laughter Comes Tears”
  • “Breaking It Up”


  • “Tonight”
  • “Can I Kick It?”
  • More Fifth Columns

    It’s like he wants me to hate him more:

    Belying a crisis situation, however, McCain didn’t leave New York immediately. He spent Thursday morning at an event for the Clinton Global Initiative, the nonprofit foundation run by former President Bill Clinton. As McCain headed for Washington later that morning, he was sufficiently concerned about the situation that Schmidt felt compelled to reassure him. “Remember what President Clinton told you,” Schmidt said, referring to advice Clinton had dispensed that morning: “If you do the right thing, it might be painful for a few days. But in the long run it will work out in your favor.”

    It was scummy enough that Clinton invited McCain, but giving him campaign advice? Damn, that’s low.

    Things that Make Me Happy

    Nothing is as satisfying as watching David Cutler describe to 500 smug Harvard students, who’ve just spent a month or so learning about the evils of taxation and the virtues of the free market, every single market failure present in the health care industry. It’s as if there’s a giant neon sign saying, “Everything you learned in the last unit is far too simplistic to be anywhere close to relevant.”