George McGovern Has Conservative Heads Exploding

George McGovern has an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal warning that “Under the guise of protecting us from ourselves, the right and the left are becoming ever more aggressive in regulating behavior. Much paternalist scrutiny has recently centered on personal economics, including calls to regulate subprime mortgages.”

McGovern sounds rather conservative on economic issues, making the heads of quite a few conservative bloggers explode today. McGovern’s ideas on mortgages sure make more sense than Hillary Clinton’s proposals.

George McGovern was branded as being on the far left because of his opposition to the Vietnam war, but I wonder if he was ever as economically liberal as his reputation. This many years later I primarily remember his views on the war and don’t really recall much of his economic platform. He didn’t have much of a chance, going up against a candidate with the greatest slogan of all time: “Don’t Change Dicks in the Middle of a Screw, Reelect Nixon in ’72.” Okay, that might not have been the official slogan, but it should have been.

Ed Morrissey may very well be right that this is a natural progression from being in office to running a business in the private sector. Regardless of where McGovern stood in 1972, he became more conservative on economic issues over the years and today’s op-ed is not a sudden change in philosophy. Back 1992 he had an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal condemning the government regulations which led to his inn going out of business. Incidentally, McGovern also voted for Gerald Ford over Jimmy Carter in 1976, but did vote for Carter against Reagan in 1980.

If McGovern has moved away from the left on economic issues, there are certainly parallels to Barry Goldwater, who moved away from the right on social issues and considered himself a liberal in his later years. It says something about the foolishness of our current hyper-partisanship when over time the views of George McGovern and Barry Goldwater moved towards the other’s.

SciFi Friday: Deaths, Spoilers, And It’s Very Stressful Being an Other

There’s some major spoilers here in case anyone is behind with their television watching, especially with regards to Jericho. The show is increasingly becoming a conflict between the people of Jericho and the Cheyenne government. We find that Jennings & Rall (think Halliburton) was involved in the nuclear attacks, setting themselves up for future success. The first battle of the rebellion against Cheyenne took place with Bonnie getting killed, but not before she did shot several of Goetz’s people. The final three episodes should be interesting.

Another female lead might also have been killed on another show. Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles wrapped up the season with a cliff hanger in which Cameron is in an exploding car. I can’t get too worried about her fate. If she isn’t successful in rebuilding herself after the explosion, another cyborg of the same model could be sent back in time to replace her. I’d be far more worried about the fate of Kyle Reese, now that we’ve seen him as a child if Skynet should ever find out who John’s father is.

Lost returns to flash backs as opposed to the recent flash forwards. The episode is officially about Juliet, but in many ways provides more information about Ben. Just when we thought he was as creepy a guy as possible, he out does himself in taking Juliet to see Goodwin’s impaled body. The best line of the night had to be when Juliet explained why she was seeing a therapist by explaining, “It’s very stressful being an Other, Jack.”

We also learn why some of the people from the freighter have gas masks, and fortunately it turns out that Ben was misleading everyone else about their plans.  Next week we will learn who Ben’s spy on the freighter is, and it is made clear that we know who it is. The most likely candidate is Michael, but I wouldn’t rule out Walt considering how time is different on the island compared to the outside world.

Recently the actors had the opportunity to ask the producers some questions and some minor spoilers were revealed.  The season will end by revealing the deal the Oceanic Six makes to get off the island, and we will also discover the identity of the person in the coffin at the end of last season.

There are a number of rumors floating around regarding Doctor Who and Torchwood. Rumor has it that if David Tennant leaves after next season, The Doctor will regenerate into Robert Carlyle of The Fully Monty. 

I really hope this rumor regarding Torchwood is not true. They’ve been trying to make the show more “family friendly” with the move to BBC-2 this season. The rumor is that they are going to make it even more family friendly for season three and write out regular cast members including John Barrowman, Burn Gorman and Naoko Mori. Eve Myles would return as Gwen and Freyma Angeman would return to Torchwood as Martha Jones.

There’s also a minor spoiler about Heroes. Eriko Tamura, who played  Hiro’s 16th-century love interest, is going to be brought to the present for next season. The plans were delayed by the strike.

24 was also delayed by the strike, with the entire season postponed until next year. Due to the long gap there are now plans for a two hour television movie to air next fall to bridge the two year gap between seasons six and seven.

There is another movie being rumored. The owner of the strip club which was used to film the scenes at Bada Bing on The Sopranos  says he is holding off renovations on the club after getting a tip that there might be a Sopranos movie. HBO denies this, and we don’t even know if Tony remained alive after the finale.

And, finally, Ausiello has a guess as to who ultimately becomes the mother on How I Met Your Mother. He reports that Alicia Silverstone has been cast in a multi-episode arc, playing a doctor who dates Ted. The show has not officially been renewed for next season, and the produces have promised that we will see Ted’s eventual wife before the series ends. He speculates that Silverstone will be identified as his future wife, keeping the promise to show her before the series ends should it not be renewed. Knowing Ted, I wouldn’t be surprised if he dates Silverstone, breaks up, and then meets his eventual wife at the time of the break up. 

Clinton’s Foreign Policy Experience

Despite all her whining that the press is biased toward Obama, Hillary Clinton has actually been the beneficiary of favorable media coverage. During 2007 they played along with her claims of being the inevitable candidate, and didn’t cease doing so until her inevitability claims were shattered by losing. Although Clinton has far less actual experience than Obama they also repeat her claims of being the more experienced candidate. Occasionally a journalist will actually take a look at Clinton’s claims on experience, as the Chicago Tribune did today. They begin by quoting one member of the Clinton administration who is now advising Obama:

“She was never asked to do the heavy lifting” when meeting with foreign leaders, said Susan Rice, who was an assistant secretary of state in the Clinton administration and is now advising Obama. “She wasn’t asked to move the mountain or deliver a harsh message or a veiled threat. It was all gentle prodding or constructive reinforcement. And it would not have been appropriate for her to do the heavy lifting.”

The article next looks at some specific claims which Clinton has made. They mention that she “cited ‘standing up’ to the Chinese government on women’s rights and a one-day visit she made to Bosnia following the Dayton peace accords.” In other words she made a speech. She claims that is meaningless that Obama made a controversial speech against the war when running for the Senate, but believes she was courageous for making a speech in China, when she had nothing at stake. The Chinese were hardly going to arrest the First Lady of a visiting country as a dissident. Susan Rice also questions whether this makes her qualified to answer the phone at 3 a.m. “How does going to Beijing and giving a speech show crisis management? There was no crisis. And there was nothing to manage.”

Clinton claimed to have had a role in the negotiations in Northern Ireland.

But Tim Pat Coogan, an Irish historian who has written extensively on the conflict in Northern Ireland, said the first lady’s visits were not decisive in the negotiating breakthroughs in Northern Ireland.

“It was a nice thing to see her there, with the women’s groups. It helped, I suppose,” Coogan said. “But it was ancillary to the main thing. It was part of the stage effects, the optics.

“There were all kinds of peace movements, women’s movements throughout the ‘Troubles.’ But it was more about the clout of Bill Clinton,” added Coogan, who said Clinton administration decisions to grant visas to leaders of the Irish Republican Army’s political wing and appoint a U.S. negotiator were the keys to changing the political climate.

Clinton has also exaggerated the significance of her Macedonia visit:

In 1999, Clinton visited Albanian refugee camps in Macedonia during the NATO bombing campaign to force Slobodan Milosevic’s troops out of Kosovo. Macedonia had sealed its borders in an attempt to stop the arrival of refugees but, under Western pressure, reopened them the day before Clinton visited the camps.

A former Clinton administration official sympathetic to her candidacy said her presence “played a very important role in helping to shore up support for the Kosovars.”

But Ivo Daalder, a former Clinton NSC official with responsibility for the Balkans and author of a history of the Kosovo conflict, said the border opening had nothing to do with her negotiating skills.

“It was her coming that helped. But she had absolutely no role in the dirty work of negotiations,” said Daalder, an Obama supporter. “This had nothing to do with her competence.”

Congressional Quarterly has also questioned Clinton’s claims regarding experience.  The New York Times had a similar review in December, noting that she did not even have security clearance.

Despite Clinton’s claims of being more experienced, Obama has more years of legislative experience than Clinton. Obama’s legal experience is also more significant. While Clinton was a corporate lawyer,  remaining quiet on Wal-Mart’s board as they fought unions, Obama was teaching Constitutional law. This likely has a bearing on Obama’s positions on  separation of church and state and the differences in their views on presidential power and executive privilege. Obama’s experience as a community organizer helps explain the differences in their view of government, with Obama taking less of a top-down approach than Clinton, and influences his political strategy, allowing him to beat the supposedly all powerful Clinton machine.

Calling The Monster a Monster

Samantha Power has resigned after stating the truth about Hillary Clinton in an interview with The Scotsman:

“We f***** up in Ohio,” she admitted. “In Ohio, they are obsessed and Hillary is going to town on it, because she knows Ohio’s the only place they can win.

“She is a monster, too – that is off the record – she is stooping to anything,” Ms Power said, hastily trying to withdraw her remark.

Ms Power said of the Clinton campaign: “Here, it looks like desperation. I hope it looks like desperation there, too.

“You just look at her and think, ‘Ergh’. But if you are poor and she is telling you some story about how Obama is going to take your job away, maybe it will be more effective. The amount of deceit she has put forward is really unattractive.”

Although true, this was not a prudent comment to make in an interview. Besides trying to immediately withdraw the comment, Powers did issue an apology:

“These comments do not reflect my feelings about Sen. Clinton, whose leadership and public service I have long admired,” Power said in a statement.

“It is wrong for anyone to pursue this campaign in such negative and personal terms,” she added. “I apologize to Senator Clinton and to Senator Obama, who has made very clear that these kinds of expressions should have no place in American politics.”

Clinton, being the monster that she is, decided that an apology wasn’t enough and demanded that Powers be fired. Powers subsequently resigned, making this statement: