Archive for November 2004

Rather out at CBS

Dan Rather announced Tuesday that he will step down as anchor and managing editor of the CBS Evening News in March, 24 years after his first broadcast in that position.
Rather will continue to work full-time at CBS News as a correspondent for both editions of 60 Minutes, as well as on other assignments for the news division.
CBS made no mention of a potential successor.
Rather, 73, has come under fire for his 60 Minutes report on President Bush’s service in the National Guard during the Vietnam War. The report relied on documents that cast Mr. Bush’s service in a negative light. Critics charged that the documents were forgeries, and CBS News was unable to vouch for their authenticity. An independent commission is now investigating the matter.

Goldberg on President Bush: Damned if he does, damned if he doesn’t

The president can do nothing right.
This has been a constant theme of the last four years. When Bush was allegedly acting unilaterally (Iraq), he was denounced for not being multilateral. When he was multilateral (North Korea), he was denounced for not being unilateral. When Europeans are excluded, that’s bad (again, allegedly Iraq); when Europeans are allowed to take the lead (Iran), that’s bad, too. When Bush “outsourced” the war in Afghanistan by using non-American troops, that was a monumental mistake, according to Kerry and others. When we didn’t outsource the war in Iraq, that was a monumental mistake as well. And so on.
To understand the president’s Catch-22 with his critics, consider his latest move as he prepares for his second term: shaking up the Central Intelligence Agency. Ever since 9/11 a cacophonic chorus has been calling for shake-ups at the CIA. “Why hasn’t anyone been fired?” demanded everyone from the New York Times and the Democratic party to the so-called 9/11 families. The 9/11 commission demanded a huge shake-up not only of our intelligence bureaucracy but of the way we think about national security more broadly.
Well, the administration is attempting to do that. Porter Goss, the former chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and a one-time CIA operative himself, is shaking things up. Several longtime and senior veterans of the agency have resigned in protest over Goss’s supposedly rough and rude tactics.
Jonah Goldberg on National Review Online

New name for the Expos

It’s official, the Montreal Expos are now the Washington Nationals.

City and team officials announced at a Monday press conference at Union Station that Washington, D.C.’s baseball team will be named the Nationals.
The name change comes almost two months after Major League Baseball announced that the team was relocating from Montreal to Washington, D.C. The team will play its home games at RFK Stadium during the 2005 season.
With team president Tony Tavares and interim general manager Jim Bowden in attendance, the Nationals also revealed a new logo and uniform color scheme, which is red, blue and gold.

I like it. It’s definitely better than the Senators.

Tales from a Turkey help-line

Mary Clingman serves as director of the Butterball Turkey Talk Line in Downers Grove, Ill. It expects to take more than 100,000 inquiries through Christmas.
Some past callers stand out.
“We got a call from a guy last year whose turkey wouldn’t fit in his pan. He wrapped it in a towel and stomped on it until it did,” Clingman said.
Another caller cut a turkey in half with a chain saw, then worried that oil on the saw might have transferred onto the turkey. A woman in Colorado who left her turkey outside to keep it frozen realized she couldn’t find it when more snow fell.
And one phone call began: “You don’t know anything about kitty litter, do you?” Clingman said a woman called after her husband poured kitty litter on the bottom of a new grill in hopes of absorbing drippings. Fortunately, the grill hadn’t been lit yet, so the turkey was pulled off and cooked more conventionally, she said.
Kathy Bernard with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (news – web sites)’s Meat and Poultry Hotline in Beltsville, Md., said a caller last year wanted to make her bird inside a roasting bag, but didn’t have one, so had improvised.
“She pulled a dry cleaning bag off her husband’s suit, and it melted onto the bird,” Bernard said.
Yahoo! News

Date set for Iraqi elections

Iraq’s Electoral Commission on Sunday set national elections for Jan. 30, and a spokesman said ballots would be cast nationwide, including in areas now wracked by violence.

Iraqis will go to the polls to choose a national assembly, which will among other things draft a permanent constitution. The vote is seen as a major step toward building democracy after years of rule by Saddam Hussein.

Sunday was the first time a date for national elections was set; the commission was charged with choosing a date before the end of January.
“Having elections in Iraq are very important, and having them in time is also so important for the Iraqi people to have more security in Iraq,” said Salama al-Khafaji, a Shiite member of the interim Iraqi National Assembly.
Iraqi voters will choose representatives for a 275-member national assembly, provincial councils and the national council for Kurdistan. Ayar said that 122 political parties out of 195 applications were accepted and registered for the elections.
ABC News

Well, some good news for Ron Artest

Looks like he might be getting a little time off to focus on his Rap career after all.

Indiana’s Ron Artest and Stephen Jackson charged into the stands and fought with fans in the final minute of their game against the Detroit Pistons on Friday night, and the brawl forced an early and ugly end to the Pacers’ 97-82 win.
Officials stopped the game with 45.9 seconds remaining after pushing and shoving between the teams spilled into the stands once fans got involved by throwing things at the players near the scorer’s table.
“It’s the ugliest thing I’ve seen as a coach or player,” said Pistons coach Larry Brown, who was in the middle of the confrontation, trying to break it up.
After several minutes of players fighting with fans in the stands, a chair, beer, ice, and popcorn were thrown at the Pacers as they made their way to the locker-room in one of the scariest brawls in an NBA game.
“I felt like I was fighting for my life out there,” Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said. “I’m sorry the game had to end this way.”
The Globe and Mail

The Ba’th party seems to be setting up shop in France

With the defeat of the Saddam Hussein regime on April 9, 2003, the Ba’th ruling party was outlawed and a committee for the de-Ba’thification of Iraq was established. [1] However, the Ba’th’s propaganda machine appears to have found a new abode in Paris, France, whence threats to the U.S. are issued regularly in three languages – English, French, and Spanish. Not surprisingly, the Ba’thist propagandists use the word “resistance” (in French, “la resistance”) to underscore the association with the struggle against the Nazi occupation of France during WWII.
The resurrection of the Ba’th Party on French soil was further strengthened by France’s proposal that representatives of “la resistance” should participate in any future conference that will be convened to discuss the future of Iraq. This position was clearly stated by Michel Barnier, the French Foreign Minister, in an interview with the French TV station ” France Inter.” In the interview, Mr. Barnier called for a political process in Iraq that would include “a number of groups and people who have today opted for the path of resistance through the use of weapons.”

Gee, imagine that…

Kofi Annan faces vote of no confidence

UN staff are expected to make an unprecedented vote of no confidence in Secretary-General Kofi Annan, union sources say, after a series of scandals tainted his term in charge of the world body.
The UN staff union, in what officials said was the first vote of its kind in the almost 60-year history of the United Nations, was set to approve a resolution withdrawing support for Annan and senior UN management.
Annan has been in the line of fire over a series of scandals including controversy about a UN aid program that investigators say allowed deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein to embezzle billions of dollars.
Staffers said the trigger for the no-confidence measure was an announcement this week that Annan had pardoned the UN’s top oversight official, who was facing allegations of favouritism and sexual harassment.
Yahoo! News

Not exactly the French participation in Iraq we were looking for

Frenchmen are dying alongside on the other side of our troops in Iraq.

This won’t make the Lefties happy

Looks like the Kerry campaign ended up with somewhere between 15 and 45 million dollars left over. (This is in addition to the $7 million he had on hand for legal fights.) Yet another sign of just how terrible a campaign the Kerry camp ran.