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Tuesday, March 25, 2003
A hilariously silly and handwringing article headlined "Mood changes as America finds war is not a video game," in the Independent today. My favorite bit is this:

Across Los Angeles, the mood was overwhelmingly one of consternation and just a little dread. "I have a sick feeling about where this is all heading. They made us believe this would be a cakewalk, and now look what is happening," another woman, a writer married to an entertainment lawyer, said. "This can only make the world hate us Americans more." In what is perhaps a sign of the times, she did not want to be identified by name.

There is an awful lot of sillyness in that one paragraph. First, consider the words "Across Los Angeles, the mood was overwhelmingly one of consternation and just a little dread." The writer quotes just two people (both women) in the entire article, and from that he deduces what things are like across Los Angeles? Second, the argument of the woman quoted here makes no sense. The fact that the war is not turning out to be a cakewalk is going to make the world hate us Americans more? Why? Would they be happier if we had won it in two days, but killed 10 times as many civilians? Third, who is the "They" who made her believe the war would be a cakewalk? Fourth, why in the world is it relevant that the woman being quoted is married to an entertainment lawyer? Is this an attempt at legitimizing her job as a writer or making her sound a little more mainstream? The other woman quoted in the article is identified as a nursery school teacher, with no mention of her husband's c.v.; apparently no resume bolstering is required in her case. And finally, I can't help but chuckle at the last line about it being a sign of the times that the writer did not want to be identified by name. Just red meat to the folks who see McCarthyism under every bed.
Lawrence Kudlow, in an otherwise fine editorial in the New York Post says:

Equally problematic for Democrats is the apparent popularity of antiwar presidential candidate Howard Dean, the former Vermont governor, who is absorbing the political oxygen from more responsible candidates like Richard Gephardt and Joe Lieberman.

Dean is constantly being mentioned as surging in popularity among Democrats. Indeed, the phrase Howard Dean boomlet came up with 115 hits on Google, a fair number of which are relevant:

Jonah Goldberg: There will be major Howard Dean boomlet next summer.
Blooger Charles Donefer:I was excited to see a little media boomlet around Vermont Governor Howard Dean.
Hugh Hewitt: The Dean boomlet will be fun to watch, as will its collapse when people study the state of Vermont with its 617,000 people, its eight murders in 2002, and its 3,000 African-Americans.

There is only one problem with the Dean boomlet: There is no evidence that it is happening. According to the latest CNN/USA Today poll, if Hillary Clinton does not run, Dean is three points behind Carol Moseley Braun, and tied with Al Sharpton at five percent. We can take it as read that anybody who gets less support than Carol Moseley Braun is a fringe candidate.
David Gelernter points out that it is unlikely that the Iraqis will love us while the bombs are dropping. That will be far more likely to happen after the war.

If you want information about tank warfare, or other technical aspects of the war, Gregg Easterbrook has been posting stuff that reads like it could be in the next Tom Clancy novel.



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