Monday, November 26, 2007

In the News


French "youths" are rioting again. Way back when it took Jacque Chirac twelve days to come from under his desk before addressing a French "youth" riot. There are plenty here in America that snicker at such a display. We shouldn't snicker. This is very dangerous and some very bad people are organizing these displays of aggression. The French appear totally impotent to stop them, and that should scare everyone.
Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, fresh from a triumphant return from exile, registered Monday as a candidate for Pakistan's crucial elections.
However, he maintained a threat to boycott the Jan. 8 vote and said that, even if he did take part, he would not lead any government under President Gen. Pervez Musharraf.

Speaking of Musharraf...
Musharraf is expected to step down as chief of Pakistan's powerful army this week and continue as a civilian president — a key demand of his domestic critics and international sponsors.
This would all be merely the peculiar politics of the Middle East if it wasn't for a huge Islamist contingent in Pakistan and the country's access to nuclear weapons. As such it becomes a potentially explosive situation.
In Australia, John Howard lost the election handily. No doubt, Bush's opponents will use this as a referendum (conveniently skipping elections in Mexico, Colombia, Canada, Germany, and France) and there maybe some of that, however don't fret too much for Howard. He had an eleven year run. In any country, in any office, that is pretty good.
The buzz everywhere is about Trent Lott resigning his position in the Senate by the end of the year. As Michelle acutely points out, he is a unifying figure, at least on the internet. The right blogosphere is no more kind to Lott than the left blogosphere. I don't know the man so I will speak no ill.
The Washington Post reports that Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney are turning up the heat on each other in New Hampshire. Look at any focus group organized by Frank Luntz and you will see that attacking your own party's rivals during the primaries is dangerous business. Primary voters are partisan which means in the primary they generally like all the candidates and just like some more and some less. This is a dangerous strategy so stay tuned.

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