Ron Radosh on The American Conservative.

What's happening in our readers' forum.
Oct. 5 2002 1:20 AM

Thug Life

The Fray dissects The American Conservative.

(Continued from Page 1)

8, 8, I forgot what 8 was for: First Michael O'Hanlon gave his best estimates for casualties in an Iraq war; now Robert Shapiro adds up the financial cost. Many readers are complaining about Shapiro's parthian shot at the Bush tax cut; none better than Keith M. Ellis. A fragment of his long post here:

Good Lord! I'm pretty damn liberal and a bitter enemy of Bush's absurd tax cuts, and yet I can easily differentiate between $300B spent on waging a war and a tax cut.

Any money spent on fighting a war is economically one of the worst ways to spend it (if we exclude the possibility that a war prevents a worse economic outcome) since much of that money essentially goes up in smoke. In contrast, tax revenue not collected is almost certainly more productively spent privately than it would have been spent by the government. So if you're talking about how the government "spends" its money, and the resulting effects, they're essentially opposites. 

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Annenberg family values: Halloween comes early this year in Press Box. Derided as an immature hack, Jack Shafer plays Gomez Addams here:

You Fraysters are encouraging me to dig up Annenberg again and build a playpen with his bones.

Ben Kirkup argues that while JFK and Walt Annenberg are alike, Shafer would not have attacked Kennedy in the same way. In response, The Slasher turns to more practical politics in place of handwringing over the liberal media:

I assume that these two examples of men given enormous and completely undeserved power over others by the fortunes of their gangster fathers will lead you to join me in a strong call for killing the repeal of the inheritance tax, lest the situationobviously bad enough as these two cases would indicategets much worse when ALL the ill-gotten money can be passed on to the noxious spawn.

Sneetch news: While we are playing dress-up, new stars for Abre los ojos (the deal sealed with this post from "Yoda los ojos" in the Do The Math Fray), The Slasher (see above), JTF, and Kip Soteres. Stop by The Best of The Fray Fray for your stars. ... 9:30 a.m.

Everybody's talking at me: Robert Wright, who writes the Earthling, has contributed to the Iraq Dialogues (find his entry below Kate Taylor's on the Wednesday page). ... 12:40 a.m.

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Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2002  

Into the wind: Michael Steinberger's discussion of wine-spitting  is meeting with laughter, although no one laughs at this analogy: "If you want to be seen as legit by the Crips, it helps to have a drive-by shooting to your credit. If you want be seen as legit by wine geeks, you need to be able to shoot a mouthful of Chardonnay in a clean, straight line." (Examples here, here, and here.) Among the discussions of sports-related loogieing, there was this rather backhanded compliment from Jacoby here:

Finally, a Slate article devoid of left-wing bias. How refreshing. In fact, it could even be called somewhat elitist, which is even better for those of us who prize a meritocracy. ...  12:20 p.m.

Revolution #9: Lynn Sanders points to a number of Title IX critics in her "Jurisprudence" piece, titled "Hardly Sporting," and criticizes the Independent Women's Forum and Christine Stolba in particular for seeing quotas in the law. Here's the relevant passage: