Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Cruising the Web

Professor Phil Jones, the man at the center of the climategate email scandal, says that it is "standard operating procedure" not to release data to scientists who question and challenge his work. That's sure a different understanding of how the scientific community is supposed to work.

Mickey Kaus is going to try to get his name on the ballot to run against Barbara Boxer in the primary for the Democratic nomination for Senate. Good for him. He says that he wants to argue "against the party's dogma on several major issues" and give an opportunity for Democratic voters to register their dissent against the path that the party and Boxer have taken. He's an independent thinker who is willing to adopt positions such as support for welfare reform and skepticism of labor unions and affirmative action that are not where the party is. If he ever got into debates with Boxer, that would certainly be worth listening to. He'd certainly have the blogger vote.

Megan McArdle makes the unwelcome point that there is little that the government can do about long-term, massive unemployment. It's a sad fact that frustrates the obvious desire of politicians who want to be seen as if they're doing something, anything when people are distressed.

Harold Ford says he's not running in the Democratic primary against Kirsten Gillibrand because it would be a divisive and help the Republicans. However, he thinks that the Democrats are doing a lot of wrong stuff and he's ticked about that and he's ticked about those Democrats who tried to muscle him out and have now succeeded. Translation: he had no chance of winning and knows it.

Meanwhile, there are stronger rumors about Mort Zuckerman making a run in the Republican primary to oppose Gillibrand.

Ross Douhat sings the praises for Mitch Daniel. He'd certainly win in a landslide among conservative pundits.

Read Gail Heriot and Peter Kirnasow
on the absolutely awful Akaka bill that the House recently voted for to give Hawaii the power to set up a separate governing authority within the state for ethic Hawaiians that would have "the power to tax, to promulgate and enforce a criminal code, and to exercise eminent domain. Hawaii will in effect be two states, not one." There is no history within Hawaii for ethnic Hawaiians to have been a separate tribe and the island kingdom was, in fact, a multi-ethnic country that welcomed all immigrants. Now, over a century after it became an American territory, politicians want to create a separatist entity within the state. This is an absolutely terrible idea and would create an awful precedent of recognizing as a tribe what was never a tribe in order to confer political benefits. Our only hope is that there are 41 Senators who would vote against this atrocity.

Jeremy Marks has an intriguing essay at Pajamas Media arguing that it would not be in the party's interest to gain control of either house of Congress in 2010. The only benefit to the party's controlling the Senate would be in blocking awful nominations. It's a strange world we've come to when it would actually be in a party's benefit not to be in power on Capitol Hill.

Peter Beinart says that a photo of Charlie Rangel sleeping in the Caribbean could be the photo that sinks the House Democrats since Pelosi can't pull loose from Rangel.

Of course, we shouldn't celebrate the end of Rangel's leadership on the all-important House Ways and Means committee. The guy behind him isn't much better when it comes to ethics and is certainly no prize on his personality. When Congressional ethics investigators came to interview him, he was rude and hostile. And, it seems, not entirely truthful.

Cheers to Obama for supporting
the school superintendent and school board who fired the entire staff at the low-performing Central Falls High School. The President endorsed the idea of accountability. The union is furious, but it is their own fault for refusing to approve the additional 25 minutes a day of teacher-student contact time that the school superintendent was asking them to put in with students where only 7% of the high school students were performing at grade level on math.

Victoria Toensing explains the history of granting civilian trials to terrorists and why we should not do so for KSM. He would be able to have access to all evidence gathered against him and to object to any evidence that resulted from his capture since there was no warrant and no Miranda warnings. The Supreme Court has approved military commissions. Why not use them for the man who planned 9/11?

Bret Stephens explains
why Chile should be very thankful to Milton Friedman. And Anne Applebaum contrasts the situation in Haiti after their 7.0 earthquake to that of Chile after their 8.8 earthquake and, while not mentioning Milton Friedman, credits the rule of law, democracy, and economic reform for determining that the results from Chile's disaster are not as catastrophic for its people as Haiti's was.

Max Boot pays tribute
to Colombia's Alvaro Uribe who turned a narco-terror state into a thriving democracy with a growing economy. Unfortunately, because he has been friendly to the United States he won't ever receive the proper respect worldwide that he should or that national platform that Hugo Chavez commands.

Talk about leaping over the shark! Dancing with the Stars has released its 2010 lineup. How many people want to see people like Buzz Aldrin, Kate Gosselin, Pam Anderson, or Shannen Dougherty dance? Ugh! And just when you thought it was safe to venture out into a world where you weren't being bombarded by pictures and story of the Gosselins? Double ugh! And I used to enjoy that show, but this is just shudder-worthy.