Monthly Archives: January 2005

Brandeis Football: Catch the Fever

For a school that dropped football in 1959, Brandeis sure has been having quite a bit of gridiron success lately. The Boston Globe reports that Benny Friedman- an NFL pioneer in the 1920s was generally credited with popularizing the forward pass, and who later became the first and only football coach (1949-1959) in the history of my alma mater- is a strong candidate for posthumous induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He’s already in the Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.
And not only that, but we’re about to have a Super Bowl in which the owners of both teams have ‘deis ties: the Eagles’ Jeffrey Lurie got his PhD there, while the wife of Patriots owner Bob Kraft, Myra, is a graduate as well; both men are big donors. Remind me to tell you the story sometime about when, as a Justice reporter, I was yelled at and told to put my pen down by Mr. Kraft during a School of Economics speech, when I tried to ask him about the team’s then-impending, later-scuttled move to Hartford.

Political guru-turned-columnist Dick Morris, as I’ve documented numerous times previously, has the bad habit of flying completely off the handle whenever the subject of Hillary Clinton comes up. His Hillary-based columns nearly always: a) ascribe both all-encompassing power and unimaginable ruthlessness to the former first lady; b) detail some grand conspiracy theory by HRC to double-cross her opponents in order to become president; c) predict some sort of upcoming “war within the Democratic party,” pitting Hillary against whatever Dem is hot at the time; and d) turn out completely wrong.
Today’s is no exception, as Morris accuses Hillary of “selling out” by moving to the center in order to buttress the party’s move to the left; Dick –himself an ex-liberal who has since found great riches in his similar move to the right- has always called Hill a leftist. Never mind that Hillary’s centrist move has been in progress ever since she was elected to the Senate four years ago. The “clash for control of the party,” Morris says, will be between Hillary and soon-to-be-DNC-chairman Howard Dean- but in late 2003, of course, Morris predicted that Hillary would be Dean’s running mate.
The “all encompassing power” argument is missing from this one, but Dick offers an excuse, in explaining why Clinton crony Harold Ickes endorsed Dean for the DNC job:

The Clintons could have gotten Ickes the job, but neither one did any heavy lifting on his behalf. Why not? I’m no longer privy to their secrets, but my guess is that Bill was too sick, sad, physically weakened and unfocused — and that Hillary, an ingénue without his guidance and leadership, didn’t dare to try on her own for fear of publicly failing.

But Morris hasn’t been “privy to their secrets” for almost five years- shouldn’t that disclaimer be in ALL of his columns, as well as the two books he’s written about the Clintons?
Meanwhile, Sen. Clinton collapsed today while giving a speech. Don’t know what exactly happened, but I’m sure Dick is hard at work coming up with a theory about it.

Free Iraq

I’m quite happy that elections in Iraq seem to have come off well, with high voter turnout and relatively little terrorism. We may end up pulling this thing off yet. I caught Michael Totten on the Friends of Democracy C-SPAN special yesterday, and am quite jealous that he got to join in the elections celebration with Christopher Hitchens. Because while I was able to meet Hitch a year ago, I unfortunately never got to drink with him.
So attention bloggers: the most important story today is that the Iraqi elections went well. It is NOT that “MSM” didn’t give enough credence to the notion that the Iraqi elections went well.
UPDATE: Hitch, meanwhile, channels Monty Python in his column today:

”The Vietnam/Iraq babble is, from any point of view, a busted flush. It’s no good. It’s a stiff. It’s passed on. It has ceased to be. It’s joined the choir invisible. It’s turned up its toes. It’s gone. It’s an ex-analogy.”

Latest Pali Atrocity

The new owner of the San Francisco Examiner newspaper, Philip Anshutz, is in hot water after placing an ad in which the paper depicts a young-looking Palestinian girl holding a machine gun. The print ad, advertising that the paper will cover everything “from PTA to PLO,” featured a girl with a violin under “PTA,” and the gun-toting girl under “PLO”; the paper has since apologized, and agreed to pull the ad after an outcry by the usual suspects, including the pro-jihad website Electronic Intifada.
Anshutz never should’ve apologized, and the ad never should’ve been pulled. A 12-year-old girl with a gun is a completely accurate representation of what the PLO is –after all, its critics aren’t disputing the accuracy of the photo- and their arming of 12-year-old girls is, if you ask me, much more of an outrage than a photograph of such.
Yes, I know the Examiner is launching a new version in Washington, and wants to avoid a big Fake Outrage Scandal to coincide with the launch. But at least now there ad will be seen, for free, by exponentially more people than would have otherwise, especially once the Blogosphere gets ahold of this. Anshutz should write the “Electronic Intefada” people a thank-you note.


Manhattan blogger extraordinaire C reported last week that she was recently invited to an orgy (she declined). She did later tell me, however, that she attended the “pre-orgy party,” but left before the action started.
This brings up all sorts of unanswered questions. How do orgies get planned? Is there an Evite (“Come to Bob’s Orgy”)? Are there rules in place to assure male/female balance? Is it like a Blogger Bash, where everyone e-mails each other pictures the next day?
Does everyone wear masks and talk really slowly? Is the whole thing accompanied by a single shrill, repetitive, piano note? Did Sydney Pollack show up, in suspenders but no shirt? Did I forget to include any feeble “Eyes Wide Shut” references?

Sondheim, Robbins, and McMahon

Some of you may have noticed that I’ve been writing about pro wrestling a lot less lately. This is because I’ve barely been watching the weekly shows, and skipping most of the pay-per-views as well- I guess I’ve just lost interest, especially since the WWE now has a near-monopoly, and there aren’t so many surprises anymore.
But buoyed by a brilliant ad campaign that dressed up the wrestlers for a “West Side Story” parody, I went to watch last night’s “Royal Rumble” event with the friends I used to enjoy every pay-per-view with, and it was quite entertaining. The highlight was probably an importune unscripted moment when, as the 30-man rumble match was ending, Vince McMahon ran out to the ring to settle a dispute, tripped and hurt his leg, and had to issue instructions to the refs from a seated position. Pure gold.