ThinkFast: August 9, 2007


President Bush is “scheduled to arrive in Kennebunkport today, staying through the weekend for a wedding.” The White House says it is not a “vacation,” but rather a “recess.” The Bushes will host French President Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife, Cecilia, on Saturday.

“A soft-spoken teacher [who] posted the words ‘Impeach Bush’ in a public garden” has been “cast as an outlaw.” The Plain-Dealer reports “the case is emerging as a free-speech issue of interest well beyond the boundaries of placid Portage County.”

The New York Times notes that President Bush’s unpopularity is taking a toll on his father. “It wears on his heart…and his soul,” longtime aide Ron Kaufman said. Some “close to the former president say it is clear that the father has been dissatisfied with the performance of some of his son’s aides, notably Donald H. Rumsfeld, the former secretary of defense.”

Bush “said yesterday that he is considering a fresh plan to cut tax rates for U.S. corporations to make them more competitive around the world.” With most of his legislative agenda in tatters and “his strategy in Iraq under bipartisan fire, Bush appears eager to return to familiar issues that animated the beginning of his presidency and might rally disaffected Republicans behind him again.”

The effort to reduce the size of Guantanamo “has been hampered by a laundry list of diplomatic, legal and political challenges, including the unwillingness of some countries to accept detainees and concerns about human rights abuses in others.” The Pentagon has suggested a goal to release up to 150 of the 360 men, “which would leave about 210 who they say could be eligible for war crimes trials or should be held indefinitely.”

“The space shuttle Endeavour roared into orbit Wednesday carrying teacher-astronaut Barbara R. Morgan, who was finally fulfilling the dream of Christa McAuliffe” and the rest of the Challenger crew that befell tragedy in 1986.

“Migrants from Mexico and Central America are finding it harder to get jobs and are living under a dramatically increased sense of siege,” according to a new study. The study “demonstrates for the first time with hard numbers the impact that the immigration debate in Washington is having on America’s streets.”

And finally: Fighting terror with a flashlight. “The Department of Homeland Security is developing a new weapon to fight the bad guys: a flashlight that makes a person throw up. … The bright light pulses, which vary in color and duration, induce disorientation, vertigo and nausea.”

What did we miss? Let us know in the comments section.