Various thoughts on current events with an emphasis on politics, legal issues, books, movies and whatever is on my mind. Emails can be sent to email@example.com; please put "blog comments" in the subject line.
Abortion News: "Uruguay Congress takes steps to legalize abortion; President likely to veto" reminds those who want to consider what would happen if there was no constitutional right to choose do not necessarily have to think too hard since basically all of Latin America -- to bad effect for maternal health etc. -- already provides you an answer. Likewise, looks like abortion is a major source of contraception ["Forty percent of all pregnancies in Uruguay end in abortion."] there too. Where it is illegal. Again, why would criminalization be the answer?
Books:Book TV this weekend brought us the Miami Book Fair, including Dave Barry (for some reason, joined with Frank McCourt). If this was a somewhat weird pairing, how about Roy Blount, when he should have known C-SPAN was filming and in front a pretty mainstream looking audience, ended his introduction with a joke about a farmer screwing pigs.
Even Dave Barry (who had a piece on the election though my paper just ran their standard "classic" column) seemed a bit taken aback. Anyway, retirement is doing him well -- guy is 60, and still looks boyish. The Election Day piece had to be written before the election was over, thus he spoke in the alternative, in part, about how some fear that:
Barack Obama is our next president, which is very bad because he is a naive untested wealth-spreading terrorist-befriending ultraliberal socialist communist who will suddenly reveal his secret Muslim identity by riding to his inauguration on a camel shouting ''Death to Israel!''
Barry does have a serious side -- deep down, he is a libertarian, who ridicules various government programs and spending for (in part) the simple reason he finds it ridiculous. Still, hint -- the reason why Kennedy/Nixon voters were not as divided might have been because deep down JFK was rather conservative. His stance on civil rights, the alleged "missile gap" and concern for fiscal responsibility all suggest he was no bloody socialist. This also hints why the election was so close.
McCain v. Obama was no Obama v. Clinton, difference of flavor deal. The guy did win a Pulitzer for his commentary, so you cannot just dismiss him as a boob; still, he has more of an excuse than any number of "serious" commentator whose analysis is as lame. How about John "We need to impeach George Bush" Nichols latest? See the "strawman" comment.
And the "C": The movie was a bit thin, but yesterday's "pie" episode of iCarly was rather funny. It also is amusing the nice character here is played by someone who played such a brat on her last show. Ricky Gervais' new HBO special was funny too.