Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Wednesday's wash

Victor Davis Hanson states what needs to be said in the wake of the Senator's passing:
"The country sends its condolences to the Kennedy family, as the last of the three prominent Kennedy lions passes from the American political scene....At times such as these, it matters little that many of us disagreed with much of the vision of Ted Kennedy — nil nisi bonum de mortuis dicere. He had an incredible near-half-century run in the Senate, suffered terribly from the loss of his three brothers, and was a powerful and deeply sincere advocate for liberal causes respected by his peers of both parties. Requiescat in pacem."

Still a lot of skepticism out there--a recent poll suggests 25% favor Obama-style reform, but 37% oppose.
That's another sign too of how "dead" conservatism is. Heh heh...
Nor does the Gallup poll bring Obama better news today--his approval rating today reached an all-time low for him, 51%.

And by the way, why exactly is President Obama having so much trouble in this health care debate? I think Michael Gerson hits on a good point today:
"Obama thought -- not without reason -- that his political moment might be different. His electoral mandate was broad. An atmosphere of economic crisis, he calculated, might leave Americans open to Rooseveltian social innovation. It was a miscalculation. Americans were neither as desperate nor as malleable as they were during the New Deal. Obama's massive spending, intended to stabilize the economy, also drained the Treasury, making it more difficult to propose major new expenditures. Deficits of $9 trillion over 10 years have raised the prospect, according to Warren Buffett, of an American "banana republic" -- endlessly printing money, weakened by inflation and abandoned by foreign bond investors."
Exactly. The Great Depression was a unique, profound crisis. Unemployment was over 25%. The American people were indeed desperate. Obama thought that the present time was a New Deal moment. It wasn't. The American people indeed wanted "change." But that didn't mean they wanted an infusion of liberalism through a new New Deal.

The city budget in Detroit is as always out of whack. They face a huge deficit. There is all kinds of talk of cuts, etc. One councilwoman however decided to take a small step:
"City Councilwoman Alberta Tinsley-Talabi says she'll turn in her city-leased Crown Victoria on Thursday as part of her effort to get the city's budget under control. "It is extremely difficult to debate cuts in public transportation which services 40 percent of Detroit residents while continuing to utilize a vehicle provided by taxpayers," she said in a statement. "If I can't ensure citizens have adequate transportation then I certainly should not have a taxpayer provided vehicle." She said she was told by the city's General Services Department, which manages the city's fleet of vehicle, that turning in the car will save about $7,200 a year."
Good for her. May more follow her example!

BASEBALL DIARY: good grief, what's gotten into the Tigers? They had lost 10 straight series on the road. Now here they are playing the mighty Angels in Anaheim. But last night the Tigers strung together a bunch of highlight-reel defensive plays and key hits and win seal a road series win. The Tigers now lead the division by 4 and 1/2 games. Can they do it!!? Note the key roles being played by Miguel Cabrera, who's having an MVP year at the plate, and Jarrod Washburn, who somehow kept the Tigers in the game until their late rally.
The Texas Rangers won again, on the road against the Yankees, 10-9. It was an impressive offensive performance--the Rangers banged out 16 hits. But they had to weather a late Yankee rally, as the Yanks scored 4 in the 9th inning off of Frankie Francisco. One wonders--is Francisco wearing out? Good news: even the NY Times says that the Rangers last night "showed the pluck of a playoff team." How 'bout that.
The Cubs meanwhile continued their slide to playoff irrelevance by losing at home to Washington, 15-6. They've lost 13 of 18.

Well...a columnist for the Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch suggests that, because Michigan's a little down right now, perhaps Ohio State's biggest football rival is now Florida.
That perhaps Michigan is no Frazier to OSU as Ali, but is turning into "Jerry Quarry."
Well. Methinks one Michigan victory would change that back again. This is bulletin board material. Tack it up there, Coach Rodriguez.