Monday, November 18, 2002

Two things, briefly.
In The Times yesterday Robin Toner had a piece explaining how the parties in Congress are now led by commited advocates of the left and right. "Nancy Pelosi is as liberal as Tom Delay is conservative." This is a perfect example of the misuse of synchronic analysis. Two people can stand on opposite ends of a train. What direction the train is moving does not matter.
Not unless you're a historian.

A week or so ago I made a comment about the future of Europe as a partner with Russia. Now Ian Black in The Guardian has described some of the bumps in the road. Being lazy I had not realized the the gamesmanship of Giscard d'Estaing's otherwise insipid comments about Turkey and the E.U. By playing the proud christian, he is weakening the European hand. Perhaps he agrees with Ian Paisley that it's better to pretend to be what one imagines than to be right. Paisley didn't put it quite that way but it's close enough.

Goodnight.

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