CRIME FIGHTING . . . "Very fine distinctions" are at play in the Libby indictment, says special prosecutor Fitzgerald, who is also working to put various Chicago Democrats and a Republican ex-governor in jail on corruption charges. Not too fine, I trust. That would bespeak fussiness. Nor too fine in Chicago, where apparently rampant dishonesty is on trial. (On the other hand, not everyone thinks criminal prosecution is called for in Chi, including Mayor Daley and a DePaul law prof, Leonard Cavise.
PICKING AND CHOOSING . . . From a soldier killed in Iraq, found on his laptop for sending to his girl friend back home:
"Obviously if you are reading this then I have died in Iraq. I kind of predicted this, that is why I'm writing this in November. A third time just seemed like I'm pushing my chances. [end of what NYT ran in its rundown on 2,000 dead in Iraq, leaving this part out:] I don't regret going, everybody dies but few get to do it for something as important as freedom. It may seem confusing why we are in Iraq, it's not to me. I'm here helping these people, so that they can live the way we live. Not have to worry about tyrants or vicious dictators. To do what they want with their lives. To me that is why I died. Others have died for my freedom, now this is my mark."
Michelle Malkin has this, plus comments by an uncle of this man, whom the Times quoted selectively. Would you say the Times was giving an honest account of this brave soldier's letter to his girl back home?
HAVING THINGS BAD . . . Commenting on life in these U.S. as appreciated more by foreigners than us, David Gillies | October 29, 2005 04:25 PM, at Daily Pundit:
For truly mammoth death tolls on a semi-regular basis, you can't beat ferries in South East Asia. These accidents kill thousands, maybe tens of thousands a year, and really the only sane response for someone like me, snug and safe in a relatively affluent country, is to roll one's eyes, experience a fleeting pang of pity for the victims, and get back to what one was doing.
It really is extraordinarily dangerous to be born outside the developed regions of the Earth.
PRAYING . . . At mass today, 10/30/05, we were directed to pray that rich nations "do not hide behind complicated economic systems" to avoid helping poor ones. Uh-oh. A certain geopolitical world view there, wouldn't you say?
THEY ALSO SERVE, ETC. . . . Sox parade and rally Friday, stood stuffed in crowd at Clark and Wacker for 45 minutes or so, then was allowed with fellow stuffees to move down Wacker toward the stage at LaSalle. From this direction came muffled sounds of announcer and various players etc. which led to cheers around me. But hearing- and height-challenged as I was, I had to settle mostly for views and observations of those around me, a mixture in all the usual respects, almost all happy and in the spirit of victory and celebration.
One guy in the earlier stuffing of bodies came to be cranky, however, eliciting finally some pronounced impatience from a sergeant who told him, no, he could NOT cross the lines to get across Wacker. "Sergeant," he said irritatingly, "I'm not saying I want to cross, but WHY can't I cross?" as if in the situation there was a difference. "You CAN'T cross," said the sergeant, who had my sympathy but would have had my advice ("Be not afraid," i.e. be calm) if he had asked.
The complainer had been going on and on: "Can't see nothin'," "this is badly organized," etc. Badgering the sergeant, he was shushed by his wife, embarrassed by his display. Their kid was there. He had got up on wrong side of bed, the only one who had that day, and enough about him.
Oh yes, the pot smoker. He was mellow, however. That was in the midst of the cheering throng after the stage comments had begun. All of it was under a dazzling blue sky in 50 degrees or so, a perfect day. You could look at your fellow fans or at the skyline, buildings across the river. Glorious. That's a groundling's view. For a better one, you watch TV on such occasions.
IMPORTANT FIGURE . . . "Mr. Bush has three more years and three more months in which to take the lead in another direction. Will he use them well or squander them?" says Michael Barone in WSJ 10/29, concluding his wrap-up "Down but Not Out: After Katrina and Scooter, whither the Bush administration?" Barone, author of Almanac of American Politics, is a guy who deals in data; so his generalities deserve more than ordinary attention. As for the Libby indictment,
Fortunately, it appears that the Bush White House will have the services of Karl Rove available. Mr. Rove was not indicted along with "Scooter" Libby yesterday and, while he may remain in legal jeopardy, the comments of special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald in his press conference gave the impression that further indictments are unlikely. The indictment of Mr. Libby is of course a scar on the administration's record, but not one nearly so visible or disabling as a Rove indictment would have been. Mr. Rove has played a role in this administration that no presidential appointee has played in the first 212 years of our republic: chief political operator and chief policy adviser. He brings to his work an impressive knowledge of history and a sensitivity to the historic currents running through our times. He seems to have, despite his legal travail, the complete confidence of the president.
In 212 years. Hmmm.