The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Wednesday, October 20, 2004  

Together With Media Miscellany
October 20, 2004

It's More Than a Bad Cold [*]
Worried about the flu? You probably should be. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports ("Experts: U.S. Can't Handle Pandemic," by M.A.J. McKenna):

"If we can't get this right in an off-year for flu, how will we respond to the devastation of a pandemic?" asked Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.

Remember the great influenza pandemic of 1918-1919? I don't either, but the history of the disease's devastation in those years is shocking: an estimated 100 million deaths worldwide.

Is That a Mushroom Cloud Over Your Head? I
They're letting this woman loose, speaking in swing states around the country? Is she being supervised? Pull quote from the Washington Post:

In the weeks leading up to the Nov. 2 election, national security adviser Condoleezza Rice has traveled across the country making speeches in key battleground states, including Oregon, Washington, North Carolina and Ohio. In the next five days, she also plans speeches in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Florida.

The frequency and location of her speeches differ sharply from those before this election year -- and appear to break with the long-standing precedent that the national security adviser try to avoid overt involvement in the presidential campaign. Her predecessors generally restricted themselves to an occasional speech, often in Washington, but counting next week's speeches, Rice will have made nine outside Washington since Labor Day.

Flashback from the same article:

Four years ago, Bush campaign spokesman Ari Fleischer decried "the very inappropriate continuing pattern of the politicization" of "historically nonpolitical agencies" after two Clinton Cabinet officials criticized policies Bush advocated.

That was then, I guess.

Is That a Mushroom Cloud Over Your Head? II
The Philadelphia Inquirer today has an interview with Condoleezza Rice ("Rice: Miscues, But Iraq on Better Path," by Chris Mondics). Not-so-astonishing pull quote:

For Rice, the failure of inspectors to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq was in some ways beside the point. She notes that the weapons inspectors eventually concluded that Hussein seemed intent on restarting his weapons programs once U.N. sanctions were lifted. Hussein's weapons ambitions were too dangerous to ignore, she said.

Beside the point, the whole point, the only point, the breaking point, one of many points . . . Different speakers, different days.

Clinton to Campaign in Philadelphia
The Associated Press reports former President Bill Clinton will campaign for Sen. John F. Kerry in Philadelphia early next week. But then I see the article was written by Nedra Pickler, so who knows, really?

Nader Off Pennsylvania Ballot
Just go away, Ralph.

[* Note: Additional items may be posted to “Political Notes” after initial publication but only on the day of publication, excluding post-publication addenda. Such items, when posted, are designated by an asterisk.]

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