Thursday, April 28, 2005

Crunch Time

Once again, I would like to apologize for how sporadic my blogging has been during this month. Regular posting will not resume until May 9, which is the Monday after the semester ends at WVU. I'm in the middle of crunch time leading into Finals Week, but I'll make it up to all of you by doing some serious posting over the summer. Bad news over, here comes the good stuff....

As many of you who have been to WVU know, there is another publication besides the DA that doesn't come out nearly as often. It's called The Musket, and a new issue of it releases this Monday. Monday is the last day that any papers will be published on campus this semester, so if you're nearby, make sure to pick one up. Why am I asking you to grab a Musket? Well, I wrote an opinion column for it! I can't tell you much about it right now, except that I'm credited as The Unknown Blogger. Grab The Musket on Monday if you can. I'll post the op-ed a few days after the fact so that my off-campus and foreign readers can read it.

UPDATE (5/3/05): The Musket is out today! Grab one now; they're wherever the DA normally would be.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Capito v. Byrd?

Many apologies about the general lack of blogging around here. I've had a load of classwork recently, and the shortage of information on the Sen. Robert C. Byrd (D-WV) situation hasn't been very encouraging. There isn't much to tell, but here's the gist of the developing story. As you probably know if you live in West Virginia, Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) is rumored to be considering a run at Byrd's seat. Byrd is extremely influential and the oldest member of the Senate to boot, and many Republicans think his downfall could lead to an elephant renaissance in this Democrat-controlled state. Capito will likely have a very difficult fight ahead if she takes on Byrd, but because of his age, speculation holds that he may not have enough stamina to run a close race. As I hinted at two weeks ago (thanks to a lead), Capito finally spoke on the matter Friday...only to say that she was keeping her options open for a few months. Dig your heels in now, because we could be tracking this story for quite some time.

UPDATE: Take a look at this article from Sunday's Huntington (WV) Herald-Dispatch. Even though Byrd has not yet announced definitely that he will run, he's raising incredible amounts of cash. Also, a poll taken by the National Republican Senatorial Committee shows the following results in a hypothetical match-up between the two: Byrd 52%, Capito 42%, with 8% undecided. The good news for Byrd is that the NRSC poll is partisan (likely biased against him) and still giving him a majority; the bad news, however, is that his majority isn't larger (unusual for a Senator of his tenure). If Sen. Byrd runs again and Rep. Capito takes him on, this could become one of the biggest campaigns of 2006.

Sounds Like Hunting Season

Ted Nugent to fellow NRAers: Get hardcore (USA Today)

I have a much better headline that (in the interest of impartiality) could not have been used by USA Today: "Nugent Sends Left Into Seizures." The Nuge was really full of them, but this is by far his most priceless quote.

Remember the Alamo! Shoot 'em! To show you how radical I am, I want carjackers dead. I want rapists dead. I want burglars dead. I want child molesters dead. I want the bad guys dead. No court case. No parole. No early release. I want 'em dead. Get a gun and when they attack you, shoot 'em.

Somewhere, an anti-gun politician is twitching. I, on the other hand, am just laughing. Shooting carjackers might be pushing it, but what do you expect from the Motor City Madman?

Monday, April 11, 2005

Why Can't They Understand?

This has been one heck of a news day. Drudge has an exclusive report about a Hillary Clinton biography that "a source close to [author Edward] Kline" claims "will sink her candidacy." The title is The Truth About Hillary, and the book is currently in the middle of a publisher war. Even though the piece has all the makings of a scandal, the strange part is that liberal and Kennedy enthusiast Klein is the author. Is this a cheap ploy to make a quick buck? Will Klein play the role of the objective journalist and report the (possibly shocking) truth to the best of his ability? Or does this somehow tie in to an effort to get another politico in the running for President? I suppose we'll have to wait and see.

If this is a case of backstabbing, even if it wasn't Klein's intention, it wouldn't surprise me. Right now, some of the Dems' internal and external rhetoric is getting unusually ugly, possibly due to a pressure to reverse 1994's GOP takeover and paint Congress blue in 2006. John Edwards told New York Magazine, “I think talking about a front-runner [Hillary] four years before an election is ridiculous,” and he is obviously gearing up to make another run of his own. Chicago Sun-Times columnist Robert Novak wrote an editorial today that claims op-ed page staffer Tobin Hershaw of the New York Times was forcibly pushing efforts to find Republicans who would give negative opinions of Tom DeLay. And last (but certainly not least), new DNC chairman Howard Dean is looking for a solid platform, trying to shift to the middle, and finally unraveling his own efforts by tactlessly implying that Democrats are better Christians than Republicans.

Why doesn't the Left get it? You may recall that I identify best with the Republican Party because of their general optimism, but it's also because they aren't nearly as prone to vitriolic strife. When it looks like the Dems just want to insult the Right or shout them into oblivion, it's a major turn-off to me and to a lot of other voters. Moving farther to the center is only half the battle for them to succeed; if they really want to reclaim power, they need to talk more about the good they wish to do in this country. I respect you guys (although I rarely agree with you), and if you want to find new converts, it would help if you treat us with respect, as opposed to thinking we're all just like Jerry Falwell. You also need to anoint a main candidate ASAP, without inter-party bickering and whining. Build bridges inside your castle first and build the drawbridge second; you'll be much more pleased with the results.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

More Stuff That's Kind Of Important

First of all, I know that today was an unusual spurt of blogging for me. I've had an extremely busy college life since I came back from Spring Break, and given the choice between an "A" in a course and a post on my blog, I'll make the grade long before the post. Bear with me, as the period between now and May doesn't look much better.

Something kind of major: Although I won't delete the post from my site, I'm going to create a separate link section for CBA bloggers. I've started to realize how annoying it is to load a special post when I want to see your blogs, and I know it's probably worse for you, so I'll add them in manually on the link page and modify the post to reflect the change. Also, spiders aren't reading my outgoing links to CBA bloggers correctly, so my adding them to the main page might improve your Google Page Rank, among other things.

As for the long-awaited discussion of a challenge to Robert Byrd: I've heard rumors that a major announcement involving the 2006 West Virginia Senate campaign will come by the end of the week. Although I don't know how credible said rumors are, stay on the lookout. I will most likely talk at length about this tomorrow or Thursday.

A Pope At Peace

As you probably know already, Pope John Paul II died this weekend at the age of 84. His funeral is scheduled for Friday. Both George Bushes and Bill Clinton are expected to attend, although the Vatican reportedly snubbed Jimmy Carter's request to come. No word yet on whether Hillary Clinton will join her husband. President Bush will become the first president to attend a pope's funeral while still in office.

Many Catholics and non-Catholics are grieving for the Pope, but personally, I rejoiced. Don't get me wrong, I did NOT want the Pope dead; however, from a religious standpoint, I feel that he is finally where he belongs. Even from a secular perspective, the Pope lived about as full a life as anyone could ever hope to live; not only was he a very active head of his church (so much so that he is already being called "the Pope of Popes"), but he was also notable for his humanitarian work and probably had a hand in the decline of Communism. This man lived a very long, very beautiful, and very devout life. May he rest in peace.

It Happens To The Best Of Us

Drudge is reporting that ABC anchorman Peter Jennings has been diagnosed with lung cancer. In an internal e-mail sent to ABC News staff, Jennings told his colleagues, "I begin chemo-therapy next week. I will continue to do the broadcast. There will be good days and bad, which means that some days I may be cranky and some days really cranky!" Charles Gibson and Elizabeth Vargas are expected to be among the substitute anchors.

Out of all of the Big Three anchormen -- Brokaw (now Williams), Jennings, and Rather -- Peter Jennings was always the one I most enjoyed watching. Even before I knew of Dan Rather's failings, I thought he had a condescending tone when he spoke that made CBS broadcasts impossibly depressing. I've never cared much for Tom Brokaw, either, although it was amusing to watch him call states for Bush last election while looking like he just ate extremely sour prunes. For me, Jennings was the only one of the three who always seemed to treat his viewers and guests as equals without forcing his politics down anyone's throat. In fact, I've always found Peter Jennings to be easier to watch than almost any anchorman on television. That includes Bill O'Reilly, who is informative and enjoyable to a point but builds too much of his program around attacking guests that he doesn't agree with. Whether it's all an act or not, Jennings just seems friendly on the air, and it helps ABC News go down smoothly. I don't like to see bad fortune happen upon anyone, and I wish Peter Jennings a speedy recovery.