Before the game, all the talk from the commentators was about Nene’s status as the x-factor in this matchup, someone the Spurs didn’t particularly have a plan to contain. And, eh, he played pretty well, but certainly not great. Nonetheless, the first big upset of the playoff season. I’d register myself as still very confident that the Spurs will win this series. You can’t beat Denver when ‘Melo and AI both have efficient scoring nights, but the whole point is that they both do so only quite rarely. In a seven game series, it’s not a huge threat.
He has lost the trust and respect of bank staff at all levels, provoked a rift among senior managers, developed tense relations with the board, damaged his own credibility on good governance — his flagship issue — and alienated some key shareholders at a time when their support is essential for a successful replenishment of the resources needed to help the poorest countries, especially in Africa. …
There is only one way for Wolfowitz to further the mission of the bank: he should resign.
Here’s Rep. Chris Cannon (R-UT), the ranking Republican on the House Judiciary subcommittee overseeing the probe into the U.S. attorney firings, on Thursday’s hearing: “The Attorney General acquitted himself well while he jumped through the hoops he was asked to jump through. Short of asking him to stand on one foot and sing the Star Spangled Banner, I don’t know what else the Democrats will require in their quest to create a scandal where none exists.” Clearly not all conservatives have turned their back on Alberto Gonzales.
“Rep. Juanita Millender-McDonald (D-Calif.), 68, who’d taken leave from Congress after being diagnosed with cancer, died Sunday, a congressional source said. … Millender-McDonald had been serving her seventh term in Congress. She was the first African-American woman to chair the House Administration Committee. She has five children and several grandchildren.”
“I don’t suppose even the ‘Gee, I’m not sure waterboarding is really torture’ crowd will be able to claim that whipping someone with an electrical cable isn’t torture,” writes Mark Kleiman. The preferred tactic in these cases, of course, is to completely ignore the issue. The issue, in this case, being that the defense department won’t let mid-level officers testify in a closed session of a congressional panel about the training of Iraqi soldiers, seemingly because they don’t want anyone to ehar about this business.
The error they’re making, I think, it to assume that these charges have some sort of objective merit to someone, or that there’s some way of avoiding having junior high narratives being developed about you. Consider what similar advice given to Al Gore would look like (and there are many people who blamed Gore for running a horrible, horrible campaign and not adapting to the media.) He wouldn’t be able to wear “earth tone” suits, or casual jackets, or Armani suits, or work clothes…actually, I’m not sure what he could wear. He couldn’t discuss past political achievements because the media would distort them and make them look arrogant. He can’t pass on things a newspaper told him about his friend’s novel because it might not turn out to be fully true. He can’t pay a feminist consultant. And on and on and on. And if he had done all of these things, Dowd, Rich, Connolly, et al. still would have just made stuff up out of whole cloth, as they in fact did. And it’s the same thing with Kerry. If he engages in his actual hobbies, he’s an upper class twit. If he does anything else, he’s a phony.
One should note that there’s a trap here designed to make it impossible, in practice, for anyone to advocate effectively on behalf of working class Americans. It’s simply not possible, given the way the American political system works, for a person to be in a position to run for president without having achieved high socioeconomic status. A person will, in that position, be condemned by the press as a hypocrite if he acts like someone with money, and condemned by the press as a phony if he acts like someone without money (indeed, Edwards even got in trouble earlier for acting like a working class person who got rich and bought a tastelessly large house). Meanwhile, someone like George W. Bush who eschews the interests of working class Americans in favor culturalist posturing can get a free pass on sailing in Kennebunkport, and a free pass on phony working class affectations. No real person can uniformly avoid these “errors” — it’s the media dynamic that needs to change.
UPDATE: Also — what Paul Waldman said. The fact that Maureen Dowd is literally recycling Republican National Committee talking points tells you 90 percent of what you need to know about this.
“I oppose the building of the wall and its construction will stop,” Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said. “There are other methods to protect neighborhoods.” The AP reports, “He did not elaborate but added ‘this wall reminds us of other walls,’ in an apparent reference to the wall that divided the German city of Berlin during the Cold War.”
“The [Wolfowitz] situation, as it is, is no longer acceptable,” German Development Minister Heidemarie Wieczorek-Zeul, told the Financial Times Deutschland (FTD), in an early release of an article to run in its Monday edition entitled ‘Government expects Wolfowitz’s resignation.’ “My conclusion is that Wolfowitz should do the bank a service and take the consequences himself. The sooner, the better.”
I literally can’t bear to watch the Wizards-Cavs game. If we’re very, very lucky will get to go down to the sort of defeat with dignity that I feel Orlando extracted from Detroit last night. The interesting game, however, was obviously Rockets-Jazz. The poetry of Tracy McGrady falling down on the job after his “it’s on me” interview jag — scoring one point in the first half — and then turning it on like only T-Mac (well, okay, only T-Mac and Kobe) can do to win the game was brilliant. And, of course, Yao who’s really perfected the quiet 28/13 game.
When right-wing politicians decide that the best way to cope with budget shortfalls is by cutting Medicaid the result is that infant mortality is back on the rise in the American South. As everyone knows, despite the United States being richer than almost every country, and despite our American proclivity for spending more on health care than any other country, we have a very high infant mortality rate. In the South, naturally, it tends to be higher than the national average thanks to higher-than-usual poverty rates and worse-than-usual social services and it’s getting worse as Bush and the GOP have taken the Dixie social model nationwide for several years now.