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Frenchmen speak out! John Cusack, dumber than you think. And more.

11:00 PM, Feb 16, 2003
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THE DAILY STANDARD welcomes letters to the editor. Letters will be edited for length and clarity and must include the writer's name, city, and state.

*1*

Actually John Cusack mis-attributes the "research" for his movie role when he notes that Paul Mendes-Flohr is "a Yale professor" (David Skinner, Stardumb: John Cusack). Mendes-Flohr is, in fact, a professor at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. The book he probably read, "German Jews: A Dual Identity," is merely published by the Yale University Press. Some research.

--Matthew Kalash

*2*

John Cusack demonstrates yet again that he has no idea what he's talking about. Though both Berrigan brothers were priests (Phil subsequently married an ex-nun), Phil Berrigan was not a Jesuit. His brother Daniel was the Jesuit.

--William Roughton

*3*

Regretfully, Edna St. Vincent Millay's life and poetry represents an outdated poetic figure (Noemie Emery, The Patron Saint of Pro-War Poetry). A non-traditional student at Vassar, Millay never failed to know and speak her convictions, both through her art and life. Here is perhaps her most famous verse, a reflection that even today's most celebrated poets should aspire to live up to:

My candle burns at both ends;

It will not last the night;

But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends-

It give a lovely light.

--Joseph Burzynski

*4*

It is funny to see that the only human beings who think French people are cowards who surrender without combating are Americans (Fred Barnes, How Many Frenchmen Does It Take . . .). Not surprising, since all human beings--except these same Americans--think Americans are the most ignorant people in earth, except poor countries but they have a reason: they often cannot afford any education. The arguments and jokes about French attitude simply draw their roots from ignorance.

I would like to remind you that 1.7 million French died in World War II; 250,000 of them died in the one-month German Blitzkrieg. The Nazis defeated the French in the field. The people who collaborated had the choice of either collaborating or being deported and those horrible and shameful decisions were taken in a wartime when 50 million people died in 6 years. Also, France was saved not only by Americans, but by Americans, British, Russians, and Resistants. Besides, French people were not drinking their coffee during World War II: 2 million of them died--4 percent of the population.

--Raphael Knapp

*5*

The Weekly Standard has become like Ponce de Leon, in constant search for hope in Californian politics (Hugh Hewitt, The Boxer Rebellion: A Preview). We've all fallen for that trick too many times. Give it up, the GOP cannot and will not win in California. The only credible hope the GOP has is some Hollywood superstar coming to the rescue, and those rare events like Reagan--and hopefully Arnold.

--Mike Donnelly

*6*

I like Hugh Hewitt, but he's whistling past the graveyard. Here are three reasons Boxer will win:

(1) Read the 2000 census and weep. Three million people left California for one of the other 49 states. Yet the state grew by 3.5 million people. How can that be? Three million taxpaying, productive citizens left California and were replaced by 3.5 million poorly educated, low-wage illegal. Recent immigrants historically have voted Democrat.

(2) In California Bush has not gotten moderates and conservatives to play together. Parsky may be great at raising money, but hardly anyone involved in California politics knew who he was. Rove needs a "come to Jesus" meeting with all the principle players in California politics--and he needs someone with wide experience in California politics to explain to him who the players are and where the bodies are buried.