Monday, June 04, 2007

Political roundup?

I didn't find enough last week to post a weekly research links list, and haven't posted much on politics lately, either, but here are a couple things that caught my eye:

In The American Lawyer, a profile of Rudy Giuliani and his legal career: Lone Star: Bracewell partners got a big name when they hired Rudolph Giuliani. But has this brief marriage already outlived its usefulness? by Susan Beck. Facing South has a reaction to this profile (Giuliani's Texas Ties), and points out:
Giuliani is a presidential candidate whose campaign story masks some rough edges in his personal and professional life. The Bracewell chapter of this candidate's tale likewise has some awkward angles. Giuliani, the quintessential New Yorker, could walk into practically any major law office in Manhattan and shake hands with a partner he's known for years. Yet he chose a 332-lawyer Texas firm where he had known no one longer than a few months and that was barely visible in New York.

And, even more critical of Rudy, by Matt Taibbi in Rolling Stone: Giuliani: Worse than Bush.
Rudy giuliani is a true American hero, and we know this because he does all the things we expect of heroes these days -- like make $16 million a year, and lobby for Hugo Chávez and Rupert Murdoch, and promote wars without ever having served in the military, and hire a lawyer to call his second wife a "stuck pig," and organize absurd, grandstanding pogroms against minor foreign artists, and generally drift through life being a shameless opportunist with an outsize ego who doesn't even bother to conceal the fact that he's had a hard-on for the presidency since he was in diapers.
Tough stuff.

Speaking of the 'war on terror', which of course you can't not relate to Giuliani, interesting posting by Will Bunch on the Philly Daily News' Attytood blog: Looneyism: It's time to redefine the "threats" to our way of life, about that 'plot' discovered in New York. Is a tiny bit exaggerated?
Oh. OK. So people around the world would see one fuel tank on fire in Queens, and that would "cripple" the airline industry. Uh, if that were true, what would be the impact of a jetliner actually crashing?...good thing that's never happened.
...And, as Josh Marshall and others pointed out over the weekend, this is yet another time that implausible, half-baked and unfeasible plots have been trumpeted as high victories in the war in terror, including one plan to take down the Brooklyn Bridge with a blowtorch, the plot to "blow up the Sears Tower" by losers in Miami who probably couldn't find Chicago on a big roadmap, and our own inept Fort Dix crew.

Of course, any roundup from the last few days needs to include the column by Georgie Anne Geyer in the Dallas News, A spreading terror. If only for her oft-quoted assertion that the president is getting angry:
The White House sees terrorists as born, not created by history, bearing the mark of Cain, not the mark of circumstance. There is a scarlet "T" written on their foreheads at birth and the only answer is to destroy them. This kind of thinking, of course, relieves the thinker of any responsibility for the presence of the insurgent-terrorist-whatever in our innocent midst.
... But by all reports, President Bush is more convinced than ever of his righteousness.
Friends of his from Texas were shocked recently to find him nearly wild-eyed, thumping himself on the chest three times while he repeated "I am the president!" He also made it clear he was setting Iraq up so his successor could not get out of "our country's destiny."

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