Saturday, Nov 24, 2012
1. THE AFFAIRE: WASHINGTONS TOP SPIN DOCTORS ARE CONFERRING.
The relationship between four-star General David Petraeus and Paula
Broadwell, his nubile young biographer, has moved into the crisis-
management phase, according to Scott Shane in Wednesday's New York Times.
Paula did not seem to be an appropriate perk for the Director of the CIA.
However, if the real purpose was to free Petraeus to promote his biography,
the tawdry affair could be spun as a clever tactic. Including a few details
on the affaire could make the biography a best-seller. Meanwhile, other
general officers are said to be ordering their staff to "shred" all,
uh, "personal" e-mails, but Washington computer-security experts tell WN
that you can't shred e-mail. Once it enters "the cloud," e-mail, like
diamonds, are forever. (Aside: Voice recognition is a wonderful tool, but
no matter how I enunciate "Petraeus," the Dragon insists on transcribing it
as "betray us." I read nothing into this.)
It was diabolically simple: Obama promised expensive "gifts" to the 47%
that don't matter. Stuff like free contraception and coverage or
forgiveness of student loans that an enlightened society should have been
providing all along to help them some day matter. These are the people
Romney wrote off at the infamous superrich fund-raiser (WN 3 Nov 12).
Yet compared to the humongous tax breaks already given to the ultra rich,
Obamas gifts are embarrassingly cheap. In fact, they offer a big return on
the investment. In its 2012 report, released just a week ago, the UN
Population Fund concluded that effective family planning initiatives could
save $5.7 billion worldwide. What conservatives can't bear is the thought
that people would enjoy sex. In the recent election both Romney and Ryan
opposed federal funding of groups such as Planned Parenthood.
Texas is threatening to secede over the election returns. It wouldn't be
the first time Texas has seceded. France, Spain, Mexico, the Republic of
Texas, and the Confederate States of America all claimed Texas until they
discovered the place came with Texans.
When WN wrote about the $50,000-a-plate fundraiser for Mitt Romney, there
were many complaints from readers who felt I should stick to science issues
and vowed to cancel their subscription to WN. Naturally, I was badly
shaken. However, as I explained to my Science and Public Policy class, I
am not paid a dime for writing WN anyway.