We’ve got a new “Think Again” column herecalled, “Thank God for Gitmo.”
I’ve also got a new Nation column called “War is Over (If You Want It)here. Ireally like the hed of the Nation column, though I’m guessing a tinynumber of people will get the (relatively) old farty historicalreference. Had I wanted to appear hip to the young folk, I could haveused “Strange Victory, Strange Defeat” which is a pretty excellent songby the Silver Jews, one of the few newish bands for whom I’ve developedan appreciation. But I guess I yam what I yam…
I read this at Today’s Papers this morning: The WP’s David Broder writes that Obama’s speech on Tuesday “was a dramatic reminder of theunbelievable stakes he has placed on the table in his first month inoffice.” Veteran lawmakers know how difficult it is to get one ambitiouspiece of legislation through Congress, but on Tuesday they heard howObama wants them to overhaul energy, health care, and education. Ohyeah, and there’s that little problem with the economy and some warsbeing fought on foreign soil. “Is he naive? Does he not understand thepolitical challenge he is inviting?” writes Broder. “When we electedObama, we didn’t know what a gambler we were getting.”
Broder is always interesting, even when boring, because he is so reveredby the people called the “villagers” of Quinn-Broderville. (Hey, they, Imean I, even named it after him.) Anyway, what’s interesting about theabove–aside from the annoying faux gee whiz style–is the fact thatBroder does not seem to grant reality any role in the story. Is Obamabeing forced to do all these things because maybe they’ve been allowedto fester for the past eight years while Broder and company weretoasting Bush’s leadership (and later imminent comeback)? Is he agambler or does he feel a responsibility, as president, to respond to analmost unprecedented set of crises–crises that, apparently have madelittle impression on one David Broder.
Anybody happen to see this story on the front page of the Wall StreetJournal over the weekend? “Can He Save Rock ‘n’ Roll? Irving Azoff Wantsto Concentrate Power in the Music World Like Never Before; BruceSpringsteen Objects.” You can read it here. Meanwhile, it contains this paragraph:
People in the industry say the Eagles may have earned as much as $50million from the Wal-Mart arrangement, which sold 3.2 million copies. Atraditional record-label deal might have yielded less than $10 million,they say.