Go Forth and Dissent
Let's start with the stellar op-ed from EJ Dionne: "His policies are failing, his approach to leadership is detached and self-indulgent, his way of politics has produced a divided, angry and dysfunctional public square." Joe Conason agrees. Meanwhile, Condi defends Bush on race, says New Orleans "gives us an opportunity" to exploit--err, address--the race issue. George Will, dancing yet again with race, does a soft shoe in blaming the victims in New Orleans. And in further news of Bush mismanagement, the Army announced it will miss its annual recruiting target this year.
Appropos of Matt's question yesterday, John Tierney observes in an otherwise silly editorial: "A lawyer who has been cross-examined dozens of times by the Supreme Court will not be caught off guard by senators posing as legal scholars. There has never been a nominee better prepared to dodge constitutional questions." Yet an independent statistical study of Roberts says "An overall comparison of Judge Roberts' decision-making indicates that he is somewhat more conservative than the average appellate court judge, though not dramatically so," so maybe it won't matter. Ah, but wait--a troika writing in the LA Times think Roberts has acted in an unethical and partisan manner in support of the President. So maybe ...
Around the Blogosphere
Susie Madrak was on that conference call last night with Ted Kennedy and me, and she was nonplussed. "And I have to say, it sure seems like most Democratic activists still don’t get it.... Yes, I do understand the importance of the Commerce clause and what it means if Roberts becomes a member of the high court. But I also understand that to most people, it’s too complicated and they’d rather not think about it."
Avedon Carol has a question: What kind of conspiracy theorist are you? (What tinfoil hat?) Speaking of tin hats, the obscene spectacle of GOP profiteering, this time on the Katrina disaster, is a topic nicely covered in Xymphora: "Competence just leads to fewer chances to make money. All of the reconstruction contracts can be directed to friends of the Bush Administration, and no one will complain about the extremely generous payments. At the same time, 'undesirable' populations - blacks in New Orleans, gays in San Francisco - can be cleaned up, thus ensuring that the area will vote Republican in the future."
At Corrente, Lambert parses the President: "Bush just executed an incredible triple weasel—flawlessly!" You'll have to read the post to discover what the weasel was. Kevin Drum thinks, upon reflection, that conservatives haven't really accomplished much in the past 4 years. (Invading two countries really doesn't get the respect it once did.) Jeanne comments on John's proposal to create a national daily tabloid of what's going on in the blogs--for people who don't read blogs. (Hey, what do you think I'm doing here?) John: "Blogs don't help much with the Democrats' biggest problem -- the passive voters who pick up the ambient opinion from radio and TV." Hmmm. Oh, and if you want Roberts, MyDD's got him. Lots and lots and lots.
This concludes today's briefing...