March Madness Anyone? Friday, Mar 25 2011 

“Son, it looks to me like you’re spending too much time on one subject.”

— Former Texas A&M basketball coach Shelby Metcalf to a “student-athlete” who received four F’s and a D.

Strangelove (the Sequel) or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Meltdown Friday, Mar 25 2011 

According to The Wall Street Journal, we’re acting like a nation of wimps. The Japanese are standing “cool amid the chaos” of the nuclear breakdown at Fukushima while the American people are anything but.

Following the Journal’s lead, a bipartisan coalition of the country’s leaders spoke up to say there’s no need to worry about building nuclear plants near population centers or the San Andreas fault. All that’s required to prevent another Three Mile Island, said House Speaker John Boehner, is to copy the French in setting high safety standards.

You read it right, the French – what Boehner in former days referred to as the Euro-socialist “surrender monkey” French. So much for what’s left of his favorability numbers with the Tea Party crowd.

Worse than lining up with the French, however, the Speaker’s rush to defend the nuclear energy industry puts him side by side not only with Democratic Senate Leader Harry Reid but the Kenyan Muslim impostor who currently inhabits the White House. [more….] (more…)

Ike Re-Revised Friday, Mar 11 2011 

As Winston Churchill once posted, all history is revisionist. It all depends on the bias of the writer. Take, for example, the revisionist distortion of Dwight Eisenhower’s civil rights record in HBO’s recent production of the one-man play, “Thurgood.”

The writer-producer in this case, George Stevens, Jr., set out to dramatize the life-and-legend of Thurgood Marshall, the first black member of the Supreme Court and leading counsel in the NAACP’s effort to break down the barriers of segregation in the 1940’s and Fifties.

Having lived in the South during that turbulent period and met Justice Marshall after coming to Washington, I was naturally drawn to actor Laurence Fishburne’s vivid depiction of the man and his times. Then, three-quarters of the way through the performance, came the playwright’s negative account of Eisenhower’s stand on racial equality.

To hear Fishburne’s “Thurgood” tell it, Ike was little more than a closet segregationist, lukewarm if not in fact hostile to the Warren Court’s 1954 decision de-segregating public schools in the South.

There’s nothing new about this negative view of Eisenhower’s civil rights record. It’s been spun for over half a century, since the days when Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., was in his revisionist prime.  However . . .Call me a Right-wing eccentric (it wouldn’t be the first time), but that’s not the way I remember the history of that period.  As I recall: (more…)

Civil War Sesquicentennial Quote (Unrevised) Friday, Mar 11 2011 

“I don’t know, gentlemen, but they paid off on Grant.”

— Gambler Wilson Mizner, on being asked whether he thought Grant or Lee was the greater general