This issue: June 20, 2011 (Vol. 16, No. 38)
Is Newt Gingrich getting out? Could be—or maybe you don’t need a staff to run. Is Rick Perry getting in? Why not? Who else combines governing success and Tea Party credibility? What about Rudy Giuliani? He apparently intends to see whether the second time’s a charm. In the Senate Dining Room, John Thune’s getting encouragement to reconsider from some of his colleagues, while Jim DeMint and Tom Coburn are conferring to see if one of them should carry the deficit hawk banner. What about Sarah Palin? Is September too late for Paul Ryan? Is November for Chris Christie? Isn’t the world a pretty dangerous place? Calling John Bolton . . .
And others are lurking in the wings, taking importuning phone calls. One has the last name of Bush.
At his confirmation hearing on June 9, Secretary of ...
The pizza magnate Republicans are flipping for.
Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell’s “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” serenades long-shot Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain as he makes his way to the stage in the Turf Valley Resort’s ballroom. He offers perfunctory thanks to the cheering crowd, but the 300 Howard County, Maryland, Republicans continue to applaud, and applaud, and applaud. “Awwww shucky ducky!” says Cain. “That’s an old saying from back down home, folks. You all just don’t know how welcome you make me feel.”
Cain is feeling great, as a new round of polls have shown him surging in the Republican presidential race. In a rich baritone voice that was destined for a microphone, Cain tells the Lincoln Day Dinner ...
Arabs against themselves.
Half a year after the fall of Tunisia’s Zine el Abidine Ben Ali, it’s time for a partial reckoning of the Arab Spring. Verdict: Uncertain.
A tricky negotiation for House Republicans.
Even as they bask in good political news—Weinergate, President Obama’s ineptitude on the economy—Republicans are headed for trouble. The reason is the gap between what grassroots ...
Or be defeated.
Obamacrats think their man is in trouble because (as usual) he’s got “communication problems.” He seems to suffer from these all the time, which is odd given that he was elected mainly because of his flair for communicating; given ...
What happens when ‘Palestine’ has access to the International Criminal Court?
Amidst his other pronouncements on Mideast peace in late May, President Obama warned Palestinians they couldn’t get their state by a show of hands at the United Nations. Soon ...
Bush’s FEMA director makes his case.
Michael D. Brown says he got a bad rap. With the statement, “Brownie, you’re doing a heck of a job,” on September 2, 2005, George W. Bush made Brown, then director of the Federal ...
With wounded warriors in quiet waters
Close after dawn and armed with a local map I take a stroll in empty fields, canyons, woods, but preferably near a creek or river because since childhood I’ve loved the sound they make. Moving water is forever in the present tense, a condition we rather achingly avoid.
—Jim Harrison, Off to the Side
The limits of endurance in enemy hands.
A World War II Story of Survival,
Resilience, and Redemption
by Laura Hillenbrand
Random House, 496 pp., $27
Around two in the afternoon of May 27, 1943, an American bomber, a B-24 Liberator ...
The who, what, when, and why of Easter Island.
The Statues That ...
The perils of proliferation in the post-Cold War world.
How the End ...
Why the best of Gissing is worth rereading.
Not so long ago, Charles Dickens was the 19th-century British novelist. The others—Austen, the Brontë sisters, Eliot, Thackeray, Trollope, ...
Genocide and supernatural powers don’t mix.
X-Men: First ...
Andrew Ferguson on what statistics don't show
If I were smarter than I am I might be able to argue myself into believing that there’s hope for the Washington Nationals. If I were more realistic than I am I would define “hope” downward to mean merely the possibility, however remote, that the team could win almost as many games as they lose this year. But I’m dumb and unrealistic enough to know this is a foolish fantasy: The Nats are cellar dwellers, doomed to defeat, this year and probably next.
I know the Nats are doomed this year not only because of the team’s pathetic play—as I write, they’re tied for the worst team batting average in baseball—but also because of a recent article in the Wall Street Journal by Matthew Futterman. In the long, sordid history of journalistic ...
Annals of Hackery
It used to be said that the most dangerous place in Washington was located between the Rev. Jesse Jackson and a television camera. Nowadays, Senator Charles Schumer, the New York Democrat, is the standard punchline on that one—which works well as a joke since it is not too far removed from reality.
But The Scrapbook disagrees with the premise. For us, the most dangerous place in Washington is not between a preening politician and a camera—in a city where there are plenty of both—but somewhere in the no-man’s-land between a self-important columnist and the search for higher meaning. Whether it’s ...
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