Alarming News

February 24, 2005


I’m still having issues with the comment section. If you get an error message, please do not repost your comment. The message means that your comment is being held for my approval. I approve comments frequently throughout the day.

Posted by Karol at 09:23 AM | Comments (2)

Blogroll Update

Two more for the NY section:

Manhattan Transfer- I met him through Meghan of the late and great blog Swamp City. Then, at CPAC, I approached him and he seemed not to know me. Turns out, his brother is ridiculously similar looking. Just a warning.

New York Journal-We met last night at James Panero’s place and he had the dry sense of humor that I always enjoy. He didn’t seem as fond as I was of the tomato soup at the Irish pub that we went to afterward, but I can forgive small flaws.

Posted by Karol at 12:34 AM | Comments (0)

February 23, 2005

Someone Else’s Story (by guest blogger Dorian Davis)

Voter Registration in Manhattan:
Democrats: 581,000
Republicans: 99,000

Last night, I went to the first meeting of the School of Applied Politics (S.O.A.P.)–a biweekly program for people interested in pursuing city council seats–at the Metropolitan Republican Club in Manhattan. There were some great candidates, and I hope they run, but will they?

The media scrutiny is so intense and, often, ugly, that people who could viably overcome the background checks, by the press and the opposition, and make a successful candidacy–people without skeletons in their closets–are dull, and suffer from personality deficits. Those unexciting people run for citywide and national offices and, more often than not, they lose. Why? A couple of reasons. The most obvious is the six-to-one ratio of Democrats to Republicans in Manhattan. But, it is more than that. After all, Rudy Giuliani and Mike Bloomberg won mayoral races on a Republican ticket, and Pataki won the State House. The perpetual losing streak of Republican candidates in many of the State Assembly and Congressional districts is because of the shortage of centrist, broadly-appealing and likable candidates to go up against the Democratic incumbents, with the deck already stacked against us demographically.

The local Republican Party designates our candidates, but the party has been actively pursuing strong candidates, and the vetting process is not the problem. The problem is that interesting people–even now, in the post-Clintonian Age–are afraid to run for public office, because they are afraid that their personal lives will be raped and pillaged, and that their privacy will be violated. And, sadly, it probably will be. That’s why a lot of good potential candidates resign themselves to the idea of that old song “Someone Else’s Story” from Chess, “I could take my chances further down the line.”

What do we do about it? Well, someday–and it won’t be long–a candidate with a lot of potential and a colorful past has to bite the bullet and run for a citywide office, on the Republican ticket, in New York City. He will hold a press conference, and neutralize all of his vulnerabilities by admitting them, the day that he announces his candidacy. Of course, fallibility is appalling, so he will fall dramatically behind in the polls, but voters will remember that he was honest about his humble past, and appreciate it, whether or not they return to his fold. Eventually, his campaign will hit its stride, a few months later, and his past will be old news. He will spend the rest of the campaign talking about the issues. The future. He will combine experience, good ideas, policy plans, and–most important to his ability to sell his policy plans and build a coalition–his charisma. Hopefully, it will remind us that politics is a game of chess–not an application for sainthood. Everybody has something to contribute, and everybody can, and should, play.

Posted by Dorian at 06:16 PM | Comments (9)

Lyric of the day (a new, recurring feature)

My friend, and sometimes commenter, MKID, turned me on to this incredible song called ‘Truth’ by the Handsome Boy Modeling School. The lyrics are here. I recommend a listen, it’s a beautiful woman’s voice singing in the first part followed by some rap in the second. Despite my semi-obsession with rap lately, I prefer the woman singing:

‘You can’t hide from the truth
Because the truth is all there is
You can’t hide from the truth
Because the truth is all there is
You can’t hide from the truth
Because the truth is all there is
You can’t hide’

Posted by Karol at 12:58 PM | Comments (10)

It’s a small world.

James Panero, Associate Editor of the New Criterion (the best arts magazine anywhere), had a gathering at his place last night for a screening of an old episode of ‘Firing Line’ where Bill Buckley interviewed Black Panther Eldridge Cleaver. Ace and I got there late and ended up catching up on remaining CPAC gossip and drinking wine in the corner. Afterwards, the gang headed to Molly’s Pub on Third where I had the following funny exchange:

Me: So, my really liberal best friend….
Dawn Steeves: You have a really liberal best friend?!
Me: Yeah, and actually, she is another Dawn…
Dawn Steeves: Another Dawn?!! (looking across the table at Dawn Eden)
Me: Well, sort of, she uses the name Dawn Summers when she blogs…
Girl I met earlier in the night: Oh! Evil Dawn!

Turns out, the girl knows the infamous Ken Wheaton though she seems to prefer my ‘evil’ description of Ms. Summers over Ken’s ‘crazy ole’ prefix.

Posted by Karol at 10:08 AM | Comments (5)


The Carnival of the Vanities is up at Pundit Guy. Go take a look.

Posted by Karol at 09:17 AM | Comments (1)

February 22, 2005


I’ve got a newsflash for y’all: conservatives and libertarians are not the same. And you should know, to further blow your mind, that if you attend the Conservative Political Action Committee conference, you may find libertarians are few and far between. Now, notice, I said Conservative Political Action Committee conference, not Republican Political Action Committee conference. It’s true that at a meeting of Republicans, you may find a wide range of both conservative and libertarian thought. But, I thought it was safe to assume that if you attend a conference explicitly marked ‘conservative’, you shouldn’t be stunned that that’s exactly what you find.

I enjoyed meeting Ryan Sager and I was enjoying his blog before that. I agree with the premise of his Tech Central Station piece that there may someday be a split within the Republican party in which conservatives and libertarians go their separate ways (the fact that this would probably happen just shortly after the complete destruction of the Democratic party is rarely mentioned). But, Ryan seems to believe that in the meantime conservatives should adjust to libertarian positions for the good of the Republican party. That’s the thing about ‘movement’ activists like the kind that attend CPAC: they’re unlikely to do a lot of ideological budging and the Republican party is second to the conservative movement. An example of this would be Alex Brunk and Mark Harris, two guys I met on the Herman Cain campaign that I saw over the weekend at CPAC, that run the website Save the GOP. Neither gentleman is old enough to legally drink and both are bonafide conservatives. The point of their site is to keep the Republican party in line with conservative principles but both guys have told me that they would definitely vote for a pro-life Democrat, say, over a ‘RINO’ (Republican In Name Only) Republican. You’re not going to convince guys like that to suck it up and make nice with the libertarians for the good of the party.

Though I lean libertarian on a lot of issues I had a great time at CPAC, as I did last year and as I probably will next year and the year after that. I don’t have to agree on every issue with the 4000 attendees in order to enjoy myself. I look forward to Ryan’s report from Freedom Fest on the dearth of conservatives at that annual libertarian conference.


Ramesh Ponnuru

New Partisan

Posted by Karol at 02:01 PM | Comments (23)

Doing what you can to survive

In New York, we have ‘Urban Republicans’. In the red states, they have ‘Born Again Democrats’.

Posted by Karol at 01:22 PM | Comments (1)

Gaming Amazon for good.

I had the pleasure of meeting Roger Simon during the RNC convention last summer. He was really nice and kind, so it’s annoying to read that his political beliefs may be hurting his book sales, due to people ‘giving those books one-star (out of five) reviews and leaving derisory comments’ on Amazon. I don’t know how many people buy books on the basis of those reviews, but nevertheless if you’ve got a second go over to the Amazon page and hit 5 stars for Roger’s books. He definitely deserves your support.

Posted by Karol at 12:53 PM | Comments (4)

Cowboys only.

“I’m looking for a good cowboy.”

-Bush said Monday when a French reporter asked him whether relations had improved to the point where the U.S. president would be inviting Chirac to the U.S. president’s ranch in Texas.

Posted by Karol at 12:27 PM | Comments (2)

Quite a turn of phrase

Headline: Parental attitudes toward drugs mellow

Posted by Karol at 10:10 AM | Comments (2)

February 21, 2005

Not that there’s anything wrong with that….

….but is there anyone that the left thinks is not gay? Toby at Ramblings on the Matter picks up the bizarro story that George W. Bush was ‘experimental’ in college.

Posted by Karol at 09:42 AM | Comments (11)

Bad start

So, guess who went all the way in to work only to find out we’re closed today (despite a discussion that happened last week that concluded we’d be open)?

My boss’s protestations that he ‘thought’ he had emailed me did not make me feel any less violent.

Posted by Karol at 09:30 AM | Comments (4)

February 20, 2005

Is there anything that super-human genius can’t do?

Congressman Maurice Hinchey (D, NY) has accused Karl Rove of planting the fake CBS memos.

Posted by Karol at 10:26 PM | Comments (7)

10 word review of ‘Million Dollar Baby’

Same vibe as ‘English Patient’ but with a girl boxer.

Posted by Karol at 07:48 PM | Comments (5)


I’ve done some rearranging of the blogroll. Please let me know if anyone is in the wrong section. Also, bonus points to anyone who can name the songs whose lyrics are used in the Tennessee and California sections (assuming that the Georgia and Colorado songs are too easy).

Posted by Karol at 03:00 PM | Comments (7)
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