The American Spectator

American Spectator is a monthly trade magazine published by the American Spectator Foundation. Founded in 1967, the magazine covers politics, culture and current events.

Articles from Vol. 35, No. 6, November/December

Ben Stein's Diary
THURSDAY Beverly Hills Here it is, late August, early evening. Earlier today I asked Tommy if he wanted to go look at cars. He turned fifteen a few days ago and is eager to get started looking for a car, even though it will be a year before he gets his...
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Books for Christmas
Our annual list of holiday gift suggestions from distinguished readers and writers ELLIOTT BANFIELD Lately I've been reading C. S. Lewis's primer on theology, Mere Christianity. Also The Discoverers, by Daniel Boorstin. But I'm not much of a reader:...
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Charlatans' Progress
-WASHINGTONDoes the sudden resignation of Professor Michael Bellesiles from Emory University signify a modification in university values? Is the academy turning its back on change, on Progress? Professor Bellesiles is the author of Arming America: The...
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Colorblind
-WASHINGTONI read in the New York Times's obituary columns of the death of a long-forgotten figure from America's civil rights struggle, Lawrence A. Rainey, a disgraced sheriff from Meridian, Mississippi. His death elicited reflections on how far America...
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Correspondence
Thirty-Five Years Ago Today The Democrats lost Congress-- that was their way of saying to THE AMERICAN SPECTATOR: "Happy 35th Anniversary!" Louis Hatchett Henderson, Kentucky More Happy Returns I heartily agree with those who expressed their pleasure...
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Cult of Kurt
CULT OF KURT Journals BY KURT COBAIN Riverhead Books/280 pages/$29.95 Reviewed by David Skinner Before he killed himself, Kurt Cobain would joke that of all the merchandising schemes his band Nirvana engaged in, selling their bottled sweat had proven...
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From Low to High
If Election Day 2002 was the height so far of George Bush's presidency, the bottom was in mid-July, during a speech in Birmingham, Alabama, when he addressed the issues of accounting fraud and corporate governance. "America must get rid of the hangover...
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Immune from Criticism
THE TALKIES In a review earlier this year of Austin Powers: Goldmember, the third of Mike Myers's ventures into 1960s Bondnostalgia, I inadvertently neglected to be critical. This caused some readers to wonder why I seemed to have liked such a stupid...
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In a Champagne Mood
--WASHINGTON-- All right, so my sanguine commentary on Campaign 2002 has been proved wrong. "My hunch," I mistakenly wrote two weeks before Election Day, "is that enough seats will actually go to the Republicans to give them a one-seat majority in the...
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Ken Starr Writes a Book (No, Not about That)
First Among Equals The Supreme Court in American Life BY KENNETH W. STAR Warner Books/320 paes/$26.95 Ken Starr has written a book about a subject on which he is perhaps better qualified to write than anyone else. No, not that subject. His focus here...
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Learning from Israel
Even a superpower can't cure what ails the Middle East Feelings of deja vu run strong here I these days. Once again the experts can't agree on whether Saddam has toys capable of hitting Israel. Nevertheless, the shelters and hospitals are being prepared...
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Man for All Seasons
Chuck Colson would run over his grandmother to help prison inmates. Almost. Parchman State Penitentiary in the 100-degree heat of a Mississippi August weekend would not be chosen by many former White House aides as a suitable location for a heavy schedule...
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Medicine by Mandarins
New drugs are too important to he tested in the closet Eight years ago, when the biotechnology company Biogen had to make a change in a new drug that it was developing for the treatment of multiple sclerosis, the company literally bet the farm that the...
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RINO Hunter
The Club for Growth had a great election day. RINOs (Republicans In Name Only) watch out. "Do you want a Republican Congress, but don't want to give your contributions to Republicans who vote like Democrats? Or who vote for Republican pork instead of...
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"Someone Will Die!"
Fix the law, not law enforcement The long-awaited House-- Senate joint intelligence committee hearings revealed shocking failures on the part of the U.S. government to protect its citizens. Now we know the worst: the FBI fumbled golden chances to prevent...
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Suicide Watch
Democrats in Terminal Denial You knew the Democratic Party was turning left after its drubbing in the 2002 election when House Democrats overwhelmingly selected San Francisco's Nancy Pelosi as their new minority leader. Ms. Pelosi celebrated her victory...
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The Age of Genetic Technology Arrives
As one contemplates the current and projected state of genetic knowledge and technology, one is astonished by how far we have come in the less than fifty years since Watson and Crick first announced the structure of DNA. True, soon after that discovery,...
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The Blessing of Elijah Craig
THE GREAT AMERICAN SALOON SERIES Jed Babbin on the Bourbon Beat Scotch drinkers approach bourbon with caution. Not with disdain, but unease. You can no more measure one against the other than you could a Porsche 911 and a Paul Garmirian cigar. Each is...
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The Coming Capitalist Reversal
Management guru Peter Drucker's great insight is: "Don't solve problems." When you solve problems, you end up feeding your failures, starving your strengths, and achieving costly mediocrity. In the end, problem-- solvers tend to fail in a global competitive...
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The Continuing Crisis
TWO THOUSAND TWO TWIRLED from late autumn into early winter, and the Republicans remained joyous, the Democrats glum, the press schizophrenic. The press had adopted funereal tones as the midterm elections approached, their pallbearers lining up to carry...
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The Dark Sage
L. Mencken, along with his urbane colleague George Jean Nathan, has long been an influence on THE AMERICAN SPECTATOR, though both died in the 1950s without showing any interest in the post-World War II conservative movement that a decade later was to...
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The Government Is Going to Get You
It was April 1, 1998, appropriately enough, when I heard Representative John Conyers utter the words, "We're investigating the magazine." This was the first time I heard that THE AMERICAN SPECTATOR had become a federal case. Prefatory to appearing on...
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The Squirminator
Things we don't need: a Kennedy Republican Perhaps nothing reveals the California GOP's troubles more clearly than the gimmicks proposed to erase them. Take the giddy GOP talk about Arnold Schwarzenegger as a potential Republican candidate in the Golden...
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Tony Award
In all the turmoil that has followed the September 11 events, President Bush's closest and most reliable ally has been Tony Blair. This is not surprising. The special relationship between the United States and Britain is stronger than ever. As American...
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Two Sides of Bush Two
Fighting Back: The War on Terrorism-- From Inside the Bush White House BY BILL SAMMON Regnery Publishing/400 pages/$27.95 When George W. Bush was running for the presidency, he liked to tell audiences on the campaign trail that he would restore dignity...
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Where's the Beef?
Dominion: The Power of Man, the Suffering of Animals, and the Call to Mercy BY MATTHEW SCULLY St. Martin's Press/464 pages/$27.95 As I worked my way through this latest oddball entry into the literature of what is loosely called the animal rights movement,...
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Why Government Can't Do Science
CAPITOL IDEAS Two comments on the midterm elections-the good news and the bad. It does seem that something has changed. That's good. The bad news is that nothing much will change. That the party controlling the White House, in an economic downturn and...
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