Friday, July 19, 1996

Welfare--Clinton's, I mean

The House just passed a particularly vicious welfare bill. Even the Democratic "non-partisan" alternative eliminated automatic entitlement to people meeting the conditions, which shows how far right the debate has moved. Clinton Admin has refused to release estimates of how many children the bill would impoverish because he might want to sign the bill. Shoddy even by Clinton's standards, I'd have thought.

Saturday, July 13, 1996

Simple, maybe, but pure?

The House passes the No-Gay-Marriages-No-How Act of 1996, 342-67. The White House press secretary says that the bill is "gay bashing, pure and simple" and that Clinton will sign it.

The British papers only have 70 or 80 stories about the royal divorce details, so not much to tell. Diana will have to give up her military duties (!!!) -- evidently she's colonel of a bunch of regiments. And since she'll revert to commoner status, she's technically supposed to curtsey to her sons now. A teenager's dream.

And Israel's sephardic chief rabbi calls for the killing of all
non-Orthodox Jews.

Even I don't believe any of this, but it's all true.

Friday, July 12, 1996

Village Voice

From this week's issue, 2 quotes:

"I didn't think Striptease, the movie about Demi Moore's body, was so bad, but that's because I saw it a few days after seeing Phenomenon, the movie about John Travolta's brain."

"In my most recent conversation with Eleanor Roosevelt, I asked her what she and Hillary talked about--and Mrs. R. complained that she could barely get a word in edgewise."

Thursday, July 11, 1996

What ho, Robin!

The Sheriff of Nottingham is fired for slapping a 10-year old boy. Evidently he's been drinking lately (the sheriff, not the 10-year old). Oh how PC! What did they expect the sheriff of bloody Nottingham to do? Maybe his evil laugh wasn't quite wicked enough, that's all I can think.

Speaking of PC, what can one make of Orwell's having named
"crypto-communist and fellow-travelling" writers and journalists to the British government in 1949? I mean, Orwell of all people.

The vice chair of Dole's campaign finance committee pleads guilty to making illegal contributions, laundered through his employees and banks in Hong Kong.

Quebec re-establishes the famed language police, with a $3.5m budet to go after English on signs.

Tuesday, July 09, 1996

Law 'n order

From LA Times. Does anyone know the incident referred to in a story about gay marriages in which someone mentions Dan Lungren having had to apologize for a homophobic brief filed by one of his subordinates a few years ago?

Lungren & Pete Wilson are calling for a bill to refuse CA recognition of gay marriages, now wending its way through the legislature. Wilson wants only the traditional marriage of a man, a woman, and an illegal immigrant nanny.

An article on Tony Blair says that he supported family values back when most Tories were still on their first wives.

Yeltsin and the Wilsonites

I've just read the piece in this week's Time magazine about how American advisers helped Yeltsin run a "modern" election campaign. One problem with it is that the consultants clearly did a much better job conning Time into exaggerating their importance than they did conning the Russian people. Still, it's an amusing piece. Yeltsin's people saying, why can't we just tell the factory owners to order their workers to vote for us? and the Americans saying, no no, you have to have focus groups and go negative negative negative, show pictures of Soviet breadlines, and never promise anything because no one believes a word Yeltsin says. The clash of two totally different forms of complete and utter political cynicism.

All of the American consultants, none of whom spoke Russian and who spent the whole time hiding out in a hotel room so that no one would know Americans were trying to run the Yeltsin campaign, were former aides and campaign managers of our own Pete Wilson. Thus the negative strategy.
And again, Wilson was hated almost as much in California as Yeltsin was in Russia but they both got (re)elected. The parentheses in the previous sentence indicate my understanding that Yeltsin was not reelected since he was holding an office, president of a sovereign country, to which he was never elected in the first place--the last presidential election took place when there was still a Soviet Union responsible for foreign policy, the military and so on, all run by Micky "Mr. 0.5%" Gorbachev.

Wednesday, July 03, 1996

Cough cough

Bob Dole goes insane on morning television and insists that C. Everett Koop has been brainwashed by the liberal media for thinking that cigarettes are addictive.

It's not just that Dole has personally received close to $400,000 in tobacco money and that Philip Morris sponsors the Republican conventions, but that many of his consultants, spin-meisters and lawyers are shared with tobacco companies and lobbies.

By the way, Dole's brother died of emphysema.