Vietnam Was “The Television War”; Meet “The YouTube War”

Ken AshfordMiddle East, YoutubeLeave a Comment

I don't have anything to say about the outbreak of fighting in Israel/Gaza, other than you can put me down in the "Israel's-responsive-was-disproportionate-and-therefore-counterproductive" camp, that the Bush Administration's silence on the issue is (once again) negligent, and the only way this will end (and not escalate) is some serious efforts at diplomacy — and soon. Okay, I guess I do have … Read More

“In Passing” 2008 Roll Call

Ken AshfordIn PassingLeave a Comment

2008 dead celebrities I really felt kinda bad about upon hearing that they had died: Suzanne Pleshette (died Jan 19 at age 70) Roy Scheider (died Feb 10 at age 75) Paul Scofield (died March 20 at age 86) Sydney Pollack (died May 26 at age 73) Harvey Korman (died May 29 at age 81) Cyd Charisse (died June 17 at age … Read More

The First Draft Of The Bush Presidency

Ken AshfordBush & Co.Leave a Comment

This Vanity Fair "oral history" is excellent.  It goes through key moments of the Bush Administration, and the story is not told through narrative, but rather, through the comments of Bush insiders. Here, for example, are some insider comments about the time when the Bush Administration confronted (well, failed to confront) Katrina: Dan Bartlett, White House communications director and later counselor to the … Read More

Weblog Award Finalists Announced

Ken AshfordBloggingLeave a Comment

Full list here. It's a good place to go if you want to be exposed to various well-written blogs that you didn't know existed. Yes, Virginia, there are well-written blogs out there.  The blogosphere is much much more than political rants and pictures of peoples' kittens doing the gosh-darn cutest things.

Senator Franken — Finally?

Ken AshfordElection 2008Leave a Comment

TPM: It's now official that Al Franken is ahead in the Minnesota recount by 50 votes, after the state canvassing board finally approved a spreadsheet of all the ballots that have been counted, recounted and examined again over this very long process. And while it now appears to be almost certain that Franken will defeat GOP Sen. Norm Coleman in … Read More

Real Love Is Fiction

Ken AshfordHistoryLeave a Comment

Oprah called it ""the single greatest love story, in 22 years of doing this show, we've ever told on the air."  And she made the memoir of the story one of her books-of-the-month.  It has been featured on the Hallmark Channel, Lifetime Television, and CBS News. And the story is this: The author, Herman Rosenblat, who is a retired television … Read More

The Final Verdict On Abstinence-Only Sex Education

Ken AshfordSex/Morality/Family ValuesLeave a Comment

It doesn't work; in fact, it backfires: The new analysis of data from a large federal survey found that more than half of youths became sexually active before marriage regardless of whether they had taken a "virginity pledge," but that the percentage who took precautions against pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases was 10 points lower for pledgers than for non-pledgers. … Read More

The U.S. Will End In 2010

Ken AshfordEconomy & Jobs & DeficitLeave a Comment

I guess that prediction would be laughable if it came from Nostadamus or some modern-day equivalent soothsayer. But the guy who is saying is a respected analyst.  Then again, he's Russian: Prof. Panarin, 50 years old, is not a fringe figure. A former KGB analyst, he is dean of the Russian Foreign Ministry's academy for future diplomats. He is invited … Read More

Top 10 Lists

Ken AshfordRandom MusingsLeave a Comment

GigaOm’s Top 10 Flash Games of 2008   Videogum’s Top 10 Worst People of 2008nbsp;  Popular Mechanics’ Top 10 Gadgets of 2008 Politico’s Top 10 Worst Political Ads of 2008  Epicurious’ Top 10 Food Trends of 2009 Spin’s Top 10 Overlooked Albums of 2008   Salon’s Top 10 Books of 2008 Roger Ebert’s Top 10 Foreign Films of 2008   Time’s Top 10 Magazine Covers of 2008   The New Yorker’s Top 10 … Read More

Yarrow, The Magic Folk Song Writer

Ken AshfordObama OppositionLeave a Comment

So there's this controversy regarding Chip Saltsman, a GOP bigwig who is apparently under consideration for head of the Republican National Committee.  Saltsman, you see, sent out a CD to members of the RNC as a Christmas gift.  The CD contained spoof political songs, including one played by Rush Limbaugh during the campaign entited "Barack, The Magic Negro". "Barack, The … Read More