Monday, July 26, 2010

Monday Musings

Sweltering summer sadness? Magic Musing Magnificence! Let's roll...

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Much has been said about the Journolist non-saga, and little of it is insightful. Virtually every opinion piece from the right employs the following construction:

a) Introduction gratuitously explaining the Journolist concept.

b) Body enumerating the same 4-5 rehashed quotes.

c) Disingenuous hedging couched as analysis ("now, I'm not suggesting there is a conspiracy, and Joe Klein denied...)

d) Galling re-assertion of prior hedged analysis ("but its easy to see a conspiracy here.")

Here's my analysis. Liberal journalists did not need to conspire in order to forge the memes that would negatively define the 2008 presidential election.

Ezra Klein didn't need some other lunatic left-wing blogger to tell him what to write. He had the Obama campaign to do that for him. The guy from The Nation apparently needed help, but who the hell reads The Nation?

The Journolist e-mails tell us nothing. Polls have shown us that reporters tend to be very liberal. Studies have shown that this bias influences their reporting. The insipid garbage they write tells us that they are unprofessional hacks.

I'm glad this story is reinforcing this point succinctly, and hopefully it is one more nail in the coffin of the objective reporter myth. But for conservatives to belabor the point is just dancing on the grave, and doesn't make us look any better.

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Who the hell okay'd opening West River Parkway to traffic during the Aquatennial fireworks? Who benefitted from that? Spectators inhaling exhaust fumes? The drivers who found themselves forced to stop cold due to the throng of people?

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Obama's strategy for the midterms Blame everything on the Republican congress that was in power four years ago. I guess that's the best of some pretty terrible options. Here is an unenlightening paragraph from the Associated Press, which continues to devote ink to regurgitating Democratic strategy:

But the White House knows it can't just be about blaming George W. Bush, though the former president's enduring unpopularity helps Obama's case. Obama must try to take it a step further and get voters to view Republicans now running for office as little more than extensions of Bush who would advance the ex-president's same policies.
Oh, so if Blaming Bush is going to be your midterm strategy, you should suggest that your opponents are going to be like Bush? As opposed to ripping apart the ex-president, and then drawing a contrast between him and the Republican opponent? In the encyclopedia of political strategy, I think we can safely file this under "no s**t".

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In response, I actually do not think Republicans should, by and large, run against Obama. It will work, for the reason that Bush would defeat Obama in a November election this year, but not as well as other strategies. Focus on small businesses, taxes and liberty. It will make the anti-Bush ads seem beside the point.

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Is it legal to operate a Rascal while intoxicated? Is it a sad commentary that I am prompted to ask that question?

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Revisited a couple of favorites this week. Lemongrass Thai remains in the debate for best Thai restaurant in the cities, of course.

What I want to carry on about, however, is my meal at Saffron. The drinks and appetizers were exquisite, but the real winner was the chicken with eggplant lavosh. Chicken is surprisingly difficult to cook well on it's own, much less accompanied by the extraordinary balance of flavors on display. On the basis of this meal, I have to put Saffron near or at the top of the Minneapolis dining scene. You must go.

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