Tuesday morning roundup of links & comments
Here is an article from the Washington Times which makes a good point about the affect on the Democrat 2008 presidential field of the early drop outs of Mark Warner and Evan Bayh. The absence of those relatively moderate candidates tilts the field decidedly to the left.
On the Republican side, former Virginia governor and former head of the RNC, James Gilmore is contemplating running. Normally, I'd dismiss the chances of a candidate with as low a name recognition as Gilmore. However, the friends he made while serving as head of the Republican National Committee could open some doors to get the necessary financial backing. The biggest thing going for the lesser names talking about running (Gilmore, Hunter, etc) is the lack of enthusiasm for the perceived front runner - John McCain. McCain's only chance of a large conservative turnout would be if Hillary Clinton is the Democrat nominee. McCain has so turned off the base that even Clinton wouldn't be enough to convince them to vote for McCain.
Now that November's elections are in the rearview mirror, the Washington Post is noticing the corruption of John Murtha.
The Appeals Court in Iraq upheld Saddam Hussein's death sentence and ordered that the sentence be carried out within 30 days. About time, some of the resistance to the new government has been borne out of an unrealistic expectation that Saddam would return to power.
In America we tend to ignore news from the continent of Africa. Here is something to which we should pay attention.
Ethiopian warplanes attacked the airport in Somalia's capital, Mogadishu, on Monday in another major escalation of fighting between the Ethiopian-backed Somali government and the Islamic Courts movement that in recent months has taken over much of the country.This caught my eye for a couple reasons. First, Somalia has become what we could expect to see develop in Iraq if we abandoned that country to al Queda. In 1993 we turned tail and ran from a few thugs in Somalia. Osama bin Laden specifically cited Somalia as proof that the United States has grown weak and was vulnerable. Secondly, from a personal point of view I'm concerned because I have a friend who is departing in a week on a mission to visit a Catholic hospital in Ethiopia.
Peter Bronson of the Cincinnati Enquirer takes a different approach to writing his end of year column.
This is the time of year when we publish those headlines about the "Top stories of 2006," as if the Republican election beat-down and bombings in Iraq made the Casey Kasem Countdown of the media's greatest hits.
But what about the bottom stories of 2006? What about the stories that were underplayed, ignored or quickly shoved in the back of a drawer because they remind us why journalism would be the least respected profession in America if not for politicians? (Thank you, politicians.)
Isn't there an obvious conflict of interest in this legislation?
An unlikely lawmaker is taking the lead to change Florida law to restore voting rights to convicted felons. Orlando state Sen. Gary Siplin, a convicted felon himself, has sponsored Senate Bill 466, which automatically restores voting rights a year after the felon's sentence is completed.So the convicted lawmaker introduces legislation from which he would directly benefit and politicians wonder why most of us are cynical about their trustworthiness.