• Just-Barely-Shorter Ross Douthat on the Gingrich "Surge": Reality may eventually do Newt in, but to the extent that he resembles me--a reformed snake-handler who converted to Romanism for the better class of bigot one meets, an "intellectual" who yet manages to maintain a childlike sense of wonder at the shiny, pointy, and brightly colored, as well as a child's sense of United States history, and isn't constrained by outmoded notions of "consistency" or "accuracy" or "shame"--he should do really well with the Base.
Fer cryin' out loud, I was already at a loss to explain why the Times moved him to Sunday--unexpected surge in the Teenage Beard demographic? final resignation that they're just printing fancy toilet paper anyway?--but now he gets a weekly piece on the campaign? Why? And the deal is labelled "Strong Opinions on the 2012 Election". The reader is asked--the reader is dared--to come up with a definition of "strong" that fits Ross Douthat's stuff.
• There are times when I wish I was a more positive person--I can remember at least three--so leave us just say Welcome to the Sixties, Young Occupiers!
Concerted, Federally-assisted efforts to "solve" local hygiene problems? Sure, why not? Might we just take a moment to mention, here, that this is more-or-less what the FBI was up to forty years ago, and most of our efforts since then have gone into creating some Half-Plausibly Deniable Universe in which Dirty Hippies were 50% of the problem back then, and 100% of the Losers. We're still being policed by Bull Connor; its just that today he's got a better PR department. It's not like this is some big secret; the G has, over and over, demonstrated its willingness to do this shit right out in the open when necessary, and even when unnecessary if it sounds like fun. I love you, smart young people. Learn that the extent to which you've been lied to is far beyond what you would imagine anyone would have dared attempt. Know your enemy, if you didn't know before. Now figure out some way to get the vast majority of Americans, who are actually on your side, to realize they're on your side. And don't come to me for practical advice.
• Jesus Fucking Christ: the Free Madoffs, Jack Abramhoff, now Jerry Sandusky? The networks owe Adolph Eichmann an apology.
Sandusky is entitled to his day in court, to presumption of innocence before the bar, and his First Amendment rights; he's not entitled to airtime on NBC. He's not entitled to a system that benefits his sorry ass in the name of fact gathering. Bob Costas is the Jeff Greenfield of Sports, a thoughtful and knowledgable reporter in his youth who, as he grew more powerful, more connected, and wealthier, became a horrible network shill. How much better can ya eat?
Honorable mention--maybe "honorable" is the wrong word--okay, sure it is--to Mike McQueary, sudden reputed author of retroactive emails which just happen to show him-also retroactively--in the correct light. And then clamming up about it, since "the case is under investigation." How th' fuck is anyone supposed to decide what to Occupy in such a world?