I usually write these threads in a hurry, tossing in notes from the past week and checking them with quick links. Only recently have I been using a PC with (pre-installed) Windows Vista to do that. If you want an OS that crashes your browser in the middle of long stretches of writing, by all means, get yourself some Vista.
Unconvincing Quote of the Week
"If a politician doesn't wanna get beat up, he shouldn't run for office. If a football player doesn't want to get tackled or want the risk of an occasional clip he shouldn't put the pads on."— Bill Clinton. He then criticized his wife for crying in New Hampshire and complaining about being "piled on" in the debates, and asked her to leave the race. (Also, did Clinton encourage Jerry Brown to keep on running in 1992 even after it was clear Clinton would lock up the nomination? Seriously, what a cur.)
The Week in Brief
– John McCain released his first, entertainingly subliminal, general election ad. It includes both the stunning revelation that he was a POW in Vietnam (why have we never been told this?) and more mentions of the word "America" than a Lee Greenwood b-sides compilation.
– Hillary Clinton botched her Jack Bauer-ish anecdote about visiting Bosnia in 1996.
– Barack Obama appeared to pick up momentum again, especially in North Carolina and national polls.
– Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey endorsed Obama—his first break in the state for a while, and
– All three candidates spoke on the economy and mortgages: McCain preached self-reliance, the other guys less so.
Below the Fold
– News flash: People don't actually think the Obama girl videos are funny. There are two things men like about them, though.
– John Judis speaks some truth about NAFTA. I doubt the candidates will listen.
– Jonathan Kaufman and Kay Hymowitz examine the new epidemic of sexism that has(n't) followed the Hillary Clinton campaign.
– James Carville tries hard to be less likeable.
– James Kirchick makes the gay voter's case for John McCain.
– Scott Rasmussen and his army of robots actually asks Democrats whether they'd support Al Gore if he entered the race to "save them." Forty-two percent support Obama, 26 percent support Clinton, and only 23 percent back Gore.
– Ralph Nader begs Hillary Clinton to stay in the race: "I know something about this." Proof that the current Nader run is less Eugene Debs and more Dave Barry.
Frank Zappa, can you handle this week's Politics 'n' Prog?