Dick Cheney’s memoir apparently verifies an interesting political point from George W. Bush’s memoir. Last November, I noted that the former President claimed that Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) had approached him in 2006 prior to the congressional elections in order to urge withdrawal of some US troops from Iraq. This might save the Republican majority, argued the Majority Leader, even though McConnell was publicly taking the position that the US should remain in Iraq for vital security reasons. After the election, of course, Bush famously increased the US deployment in Iraq (“the surge”).
A local columnist in Louisville has identified a key passage in Cheney’s memoir that apparently confirms Bush’s account, based on the former Veep’s recollection of a July 2007 dinner he hosted (p. 462):
Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell walked over to me. Mitch had been one of the most concerned of the Republicans. He was up for reelection and had suggested to the president that he needed to begin a withdrawal in order to avoid massive defection of Republican senators.
I dunno; this is something I have trouble getting irritated about. Mitch appears to have taken a different position in his capacity as high ranking member of the Republican Party than he did as Senator from Kentucky. This obviously stemmed from an a desire to defend his own status, but probably also from the conviction that continued GOP control of Congress was the best thing for his constituents (however he may have defined them). It’s interesting, because while of course we have to highlight this sort of thing when it comes to light, the phenomenon of politicians lying to protect the health of their parties surprises exactly no one. If Mitch had felt differently about the effect of Iraq on the 2006 election he would have been a moron instead of a liar, which is hardly more reassuring. I suppose the ideal is that Mitch would have forthrightly and publicly broken with the President over Iraq (HAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!!), but it’s not even clear that Mitch supported a drawdown on the merits of the policy, rather than on an evaluation of partisan advantage.
Q: Does my infant/toddler need a ticket for a football game?
A: Yes. All individuals, regardless of age, must have a ticket to enter Commonwealth Stadium.
Compare this to the Cincinnati Reds child policy:
Great American Ball Park offers complimentary admission to children 3 years of age and under. However, we do request that these children sit on their parents’ or guardians’ laps and not occupy additional seats. Promotional giveaway items are only available for ticketed guests. Tickets for children four years and older are priced the same as adult tickets.
Prospects for the Central Michigan game to sellout? Not so much. Damn those high player salaries for driving up ticket prices!
This Disunion piece on John C. Breckinridge was somewhat more charitable than I would have been for a man who more than almost anyone embraced committing treason to defend slavery. I thought there was nothing, nothing at all that could redeem the man in my eyes. But then I saw this late life picture of the man, sporting one of the single greatest mustaches in history, a feat impressive even for the Gilded Age.
I mean, holy hell, that thing extends to his shoulders!
So, the College of Arts and Sciences at my beloved institution has decided that students require visual aids in order to find their departmental website. On the one hand, it’s kind of cool; the department name lights up when the mouse scrolls over, etc. On the other hand, I gotta wonder how they came up with some of the pics. Dark Side of the Moon for Physics? Globes for both History and Environmental Science? And I’m flummoxed as to what the difference between Social Theory and Sociology is supposed to be…
People throw around the terms like “mortal lock” and “guaranteed return” all the time, but let’s just say that it would be extremely wise to riskinvest your 401K on the following trifecta:
1. Dialed In
2. Stay Thirsty
Feel free to enjoy a mint julep during the race, but I cannot recommend either a Hot Brown or Derby Pie. While both include so many wonderful ingredients that it’s hard to imagine not liking them, I’ve yet to have a serving of either that justified my affection.
Toyota said Monday it is inevitable the company will be forced to shut down all of its North American factories — including its largest, in Georgetown — because of parts shortages due to the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan. But the company later countered The Associated Press’s report, noting it has not changed its stance on the “likely” nature of production interruptions.
Toyota spokesman Mike Goss told the AP in Louisville on Monday that the temporary shutdowns are likely to take place later this month, affecting 25,000 workers.
No workers would be laid off, Rick Hesterberg, spokesman for the Georgetown plant, told the Herald-Leader. They would be given three options, as they have during previous work stoppages: take paid vacation; take unpaid time off; or work a normal shift focusing on general maintenance, training or process improvement instead of the traditional assembly work.
Just how long shutdowns last or whether all 13 of Toyota’s North American factories will be affected at the same time is unknown and depends on when parts production can restart in Japan, Goss told the AP.
Toyota later stressed that the company continues “to assess our supply base in Japan.”
Obviously, this isn’t great for the workers at the Georgetown plant, but it’s indicative of how the modern international industrial economy functions. With the gigantic exception of allowing unionization, Toyota fortunately tends to pursue worker friendly policies. Toyota is enormously popular in Kentucky, and not just for the excellent sushi restaurants it’s brought to Lexington and environs. I toured the Georgetown plant last year with the new crop of Patterson students, and can say that the experience of visiting a giant, modern industrial facility is genuinely awe-inspiring.
“As long as I sit at Henry Clay’s desk, I will remember his lifelong desire to forge agreement, but I will also keep close to my heart the principled stand of his cousin Cassius who refused to forsake the life of any human simply to find agreement,” Paul said.
Paul criticized one of the most famous Kentucky politicians, Henry Clay, who at one point occupied Paul’s chosen desk in the Senate. Instead of emulating the Kentucky senator known as the “great compromiser,” Paul praised his cousin, abolitionist Cassius Clay, who was attacked politically and physically for sticking to his principles.
“Today we have no issues that approach moral equivalency with the issue of slavery. Yet we do face a fiscal nightmare and potentially a debt crisis,” said Paul. “Is the answer to compromise? Should we compromise by raising taxes and cutting spending as the Debt Commission proposes? Is that the compromise that will save us from financial ruin?”
Also grudging kudos for not embracing the slavery-abortion metaphor. It would be nice if Paul provided an opening for doing something like replacing the statue of the reprehensible John C. Breckinridge at the old Lexington courthouse and replacing it with Cassius Clay. I plan to do a bit more blogging later on Paul’s foreign and defense policy statements, which are somewhat interesting.