All posts by Rand Simberg

Get That Man Some Dippity Doo

It may be a busy weekend, and I don’t know if I’ll have time to post much. But in the meantime, check out some of the superlative links to the left, and marvel at the man who, according to the Guiness record people, has the world’s longest ear hair. I think that beats a monkey picture any day of the week, and twice on Saturday.

So What?

…is what I say to this article bemoaning the lack of “racial mix” in our winter Olympic team. Even if there really were such a thing as “race,” there is no rational reason to suppose that every activity in which people partake will, or should, have exactly the same racial or gender composition as society at large.

Everybody Does It

An article in today’s Chicago Tribune tells a tale of a teacher who lost her job over upholding academic standards. After warning her students that they would get no credit if they didn’t do their own work on their course project, several of them plagiarized anyway. When she attempted to follow through, she was undercut by the school board. Now she’s given up, and is doing day care.

I think that this is just a continuation of the deterioration of our society’s ethical base that became so clear in the Clintonized nineties. And it’s an indictment of the school system as well–a school system that, under insane “zero tolerance” policies, will expel a child for heroically taking a knife away from someone attempting suicide, or who accidentally brings a plastic spork in his lunchbox, but has abundant tolerance for students who cheat (and who are cheating themselves, as well as their classmates).

Dick vs Greta

Apparently Dick Morris tore up Greta last night on Fox. I didn’t see it (I can’t really stand her, and it has nothing to do with her appearance, eye job or no), but I’m informed that when he criticized Clinton for being disinterested in terrorism, Greta disputed him. Dick then basically said, “you don’t know what the hell you’re talking about–I was there–you weren’t.”

He also accused her of using Clinton legacy team talking points. Her response was that she got her facts from the New York Times.

Then Dick apparently just looked at her incredulously. I don’t know what his response was, but mine would have been, “Oh, you mean the official stenographers of the Clinton White House?”

I suspect he won’t get invited back any time soon.

I’m tempted to watch Fox today to see if they show snippets of the segment. I’m wondering if Roger Ailes is regretting his decision. I suspect that he’s losing a lot of traditional Fox viewership to Alan Keyes over at MSNBC. I know that I’ve written off Fox for that time period, even to listen to.

[Update a few minutes later]

I also hear that he said, “Greta, you’re still a CNN person.” Hilarious.

[Further Update]

Someone’s posted a transcript over at Free Republic. Scroll down to post #107.

GRETA: LET ME GO THROUGH THE LIST —

MORRIS:YOU INVITED ME ON YOUR SHOW.

GRETA: BUT YOU SAY HE DIDN’T DO ANYTHING I’M TELLING YOU WHAT I READ. ORDERED CRUISE MISSILE STRIKES ON PHARMACEUTICAL PLANT IN SEDAN — IN SUDAN.

MORRIS:YOU CAN TALK TO YOURSELF ALL YOU WANT. YOU ASKED ME TO BE ON THE SHOW. THE 19 — THE AIR TRAFFIC THING THAT YOU TALKED ABOUT WITH GORE. THAT’S A PERFECT EXAMPLE. WHEN THIS COMMISSION WAS SET UP, I DID A SERIES OF POLLS FOR CLINTON, AND IN THE MEETING THAT TOOK PLACE ON JULY 24TH, 1996, I HAVE A WRITTEN AGENDA WHERE THE POLLING RECOMMENDED FEDERALIZING AIRPORT SECURITY, X-RAY INSPECTION OF ALL BAGGAGE AND ARMED AIR MARSHALLS ON ALL FLIGHTS. NOT ONLY WAS THAT NOT ADOPTED BY CLINTON AT THE TIME BUT EVEN WHEN GORE MADE THE RECOMMENDATIONS, IT WAS NOT ADOPTED.

GRETA: LET ME GO —

MORRIS: AND THE REAL QUESTION IS AFTER THE 1993 BOMBING OF THE WORLD TRADE CENTER, WHERE SIX PEOPLE WERE KILLED, 1,000 WERE INJURED AND THE U-S DISTRICT COURT JUDGE SAID IT WAS THE WORST DOMESTIC ACTION SINCE THE CIVIL WAR, WHY DID CLINTON NEVER VISIT THE SITE, NEVER MAKE IT A TERRORISM ISSUE, TREAT IT AS THE SUBJECT OF LAW ENFORCEMENT?

And

GRETA: BUT IT WASN’T. WHEN YOU TALK ABOUT THE BOMBING AT THE OLYMPICS, THAT WAS A SINGLE BOMBER. ERIC RUDOLPH WHO YOU THINK —

MORRIS: YOU’RE STILL A CNN PERSON. YOU’RE SITTING HERE TELLING ME NEVER HAVING PARTICIPATED IN ANY OF THESE MEETINGS BE NEVER HAVING READ THE AGENDAS OF THESE MEETINGS THIS I’M INCORRECT WHEN I’M TELLING YOU THERE WAS NO RESPONSE AND NO INTEREST.

GRETA: DICK, LISTEN, I’M TELLING YOU — LISTEN, WAIT —

MORRIS:TO SEE IF PEOPLE WHO WERE — WHO HAD THEIR VISAS EXPIRED WERE WANTED BY THE FBI THAT WERE SHOT DOWN AS BEING POLITICALLY INCORRECT —

GRETA: STOP FOR A SECOND —

MORRIS: HE WOULDN’T DO IT —

GRETA: WHAT I’M CONFRONTING YOU WITH ARE FACTS THAT AT LEAST “THE NEW YORK TIMES” —

MORRIS: FACTS THAT YOUR SPIN DOCTORS ARE GIVING TO YOU SPOUT ON THE SHOW.

The whole thing is worth a read.

Siiigggghhhhhh…

Tony Andragna says, among other things:

And, what happened to Linda Tripp? NOTHING! She was already at the Pentagon when Lewinsky confided in her. She kept her job at the Pentagon, recieved promotions and salary increases (started at 47K and ended at 100K), wasn’t sacked after she “blew the whistle” in “filegate”, even refusing at the transition to ritually tender her resignation just like the rest of the political appointees were supposed to do, and just like the others who refused, she got fired.

Do I have any sympathy for the likes of Linda Tripp? Nope, only contempt…

Please, spare me the comparison between self-serving Linda Tripp and the truly courageous Sherron Watkins…

My post title indicates how reluctant I am to resurrect the battles of the last Administration, but at some point, history is going to be written by historians who didn’t vote for Bill Clinton, and were never mesmerized by him. And perhaps, now that his tenure is fading in memory and emotion, and the documentation of the facts remains, there will start to be developed a more objective view of the events of those eight years. So without addressing, for now, the other whistles that were blown (and Tony, one of the reasons that she had that Pentagon job, that she never asked for, was to get her out of the White House, where she was becoming most inconvenient), I’ll simply answer the silly question, “what happened to Linda Tripp?”

She lost her coveted job in the White House. She was threatened with prosecution for perjury. When, in self defense, she gathered evidence to fight such a prosecution, she was made out to be a villain, and threatened with prosecution for that. She was lambasted in the editorial pages, and in the then-equivalent of weblogs, just as you have. Her appearance (not just her behavior, but her appearance) was openly and cruelly mocked on Saturday Night Live and other venues of supposed comedy. She was lied about (and continues to be lied about). Her personnel records were released by the Pentagon to a White-House-friendly reporter, illegally (an act for which Ken Bacon was never punished in any way, and it was perfectly clear that it was done at White House behest). She ultimately lost her job at the Pentagon, and I believe that she has lost her house.

Other than that, no, nothing happened to Linda Tripp. Now maybe you think that she deserved all of that (I don’t), but that’s an entirely different thing than to make the ridiculous claim that nothing happened to her.

Oh, and “the self-serving” Linda Tripp? I must have missed that one. In what way did she serve herself? By wanting to both maintain her integrity and stay out of jail? She was potentially going to be called to testify in the Paula Jones case, whether Tony likes it or not. I happen to think that it was perfectly appropriate to include Monica in it–that was the intent of the sexual harassment law signed by the Big He himself–it helped demonstrate a pattern of using underlings for sexual favors. Of course, Bill Clinton never thought that the law or the Constitution applied to him. (And please spare us the standard lie about the judge ruling the Monica case not material–the fact is that she didn’t. She simply ruled that Ken Starr’s prosecution took precedence.)

If she had been called to testify, she had the choice of either lying along with Bill and Monica, or telling the truth and being prosecuted for perjury, as Monica threatened (“I’m going to lie. He’s going to lie”). Other than coming out of it with integrity intact, and in light of my above description of all of the negative things that did in fact happen to her, I utterly fail to see how she served herself.

Oh, you mean the “book deal”?

There never was a book deal–it is a figment of the imagination (to be generous) of the Clinton defenders (and hit squads on inconvenient women). There was never anything except a single conversation with Lucianne Goldberg, that never amounted to anything. If there was a book deal, where is the deal? Where is the book?

As I said, history will ultimately record the reality, even if we are still swimming in the incessant lies of the Clinton years today.

Ronald Reagan, RIP

I’ve refrained from commenting on President Reagan’s ninety-first birthday, because many have commemorated it much more ably than I could hope to do. But Peggy Noonan’s piece in tomorrow’s (or today’s, given that most readers will see this in the morning after I’ve written it) Opinion Journal, prompts me to make a point that I suspect few others will.

Journalists feel an honest compassion for Mr. Reagan’s condition–everyone is saddened by the thought that this great man who was once so much a part of our lives no longer knows he was great, no longer remembers us. It’s big enough to be called tragic: this towering figure so reduced by illness. Part of it too is a growing appreciation of Nancy Reagan, who is doing now what she did for 50 years, protecting him, protecting his memory and his privacy. Only now she does it 24-7 at the age of 78, and without the help and comfort of the best friend of her life: him. She told me some months ago how to this day she’ll think of something and want to say, “Honey, remember the time