Dueling conservative bigthinkers on immigration.

Dueling conservative bigthinkers on immigration.

Dueling conservative bigthinkers on immigration.

A mostly political Weblog.
July 28 2006 6:10 PM

Pod vs. Frum

The Right chooses up sides on immigration.

So if you say "there is something narcissistic about homosexuality" that makes you a "deranged bigot"? The range of Sullivan-approved discourse gets smaller and smaller! Freud wouldn't have a prayer. ...  2:55 P.M.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

I'm not paranoid enough: This isn't quite a syllogism. More like a conspirogism:

1) The Republicans will only swallow hard and nominate John McCain if they are really scared of losing in 2008.

2) If the Republicans do very badly in the 2006 midterms they will be really scared of losing in 2008.

3) A big reason they might do very badly in the midterms is that President Bush's misguided "comprehensive" immigration semi-amnesty has demoralized conservative voters.

4) One of the main people pushing Bush to pursue a misguided immigration semi-amnesty is John McCain.


I'm sure I'm not the first to have that thought. ... Update: McCain seems to be (absurdly)  distancing himself from the campaign finance reform  project he's previously sponsored and supported. But not from immigration reform project. Hmmm. ... 2:22 A.M.

Googleswifting: Are those little Google ads announcing "Clinton's new girlfriend"--you know, the ones that pop up when you search for "Bill Clinton"-- beginning to do real damage? Two non-political people have now asked me out of the blue who Clinton's new girlfriend is. Three and it's a Trend. ... P.S.: The ad links to a highly speculative (i.e. no evidence) but informative piece  on Belinda Stronach. Most people probably don't click on it, and just absorb the salacious headline, giving the former president the presumption of guilt he has repeatedly earned. ... The Larger Point! There would seem to be potential for some highly efficient under-Radar Swift-boating here. Google probably reaches lots of voters who don't listen to conventional mass media, and the ads don't go away like yesterday's papers. ... If I were Hillary I'd be concerned about this new avenue of innuendo. ... 8:42 P.M. link

Asymmetric: I would say Gawker clearly crossed the border to inflict damage, and now Burkle is threatening massive retaliation, but Gawker is not playing by conventional rules. Indeed, it's not even clear that Gawker knows what the conventional rules are! ... Update"We have been instructed to commence litigation ..." ... 5:04 P.M.

Rahm Bombs: I agree with Brad Carson, Instapundit and Taranto's criticism of the Democrats' irresponsible, opportunistic anti-al-Maliki stunt. Al-Maliki's the elected leader of his nation expressing the views of a large majority of his fellow citizens. A few thousand U.S. soldiers died so he could do this, and Congress can withstand hearing him out. It's surely in Israel's interest, as well as ours, that he succeed. Democrats would be as tolerant as Speaker Hastert if they didn't see a chance to score a few points. (Didn't Karzai talk to a joint session of Congress? Do we think he always publicly supports Israel against its enemies?) .. P.S.: Why did The Note respectfully give play to the stunt, as well as a wispy DCCC hope regarding GOP Rep. Shelley Moore Capito's race? [Because The Note is Rahm's bitch?--ed Thank you for expressing your views. We will take them under consideration.] ... Update: Peter Beinart  notes the Dems craven al-Maliki posturing parallels their craven Iraqi "amnesty" posturing. He throws in Dubai/ports as Example #3 to establish a trend, but this is a case where two will do, I think. ... 2:12 A.M.


Gangs of Manhattan: I hadn't realized the schism on the Right over immigration reform had gotten down to the drawing-up-lists stage. Fun! Here's the wary conservative  Enforcement First list. And here's the pandering ... sorry, I mean the pragmatic conservative Comprehensive Reform list ("promoted by the White House Public Affairs Office," according to John Fonte.) It's Pod vs. Frum!Kemp vs. Newt! ..  Who would have thought a canyon-like fault would open up between Shelby Steele and John McWhorter (or, for that matter, between John McWhorter and Heather Mac Donald)?  The National Review is split. The "Likudniks" are split! The Hudson Institute is split. The American Conservative Union is split. The Hoover Institution is split. The Manhattan Institute is split. Even the Wall Street Journal ed page alumni association is split. Here's a partial scorecard...

Enforcement First: William Bennett, Robert Bork, William F. Buckley, Ward Connerly, John Fonte, David Frum, Frank Gaffney, Newt Gingrich, Jonah Goldberg, Victor Davis Hanson, David Horowitz, David Keene, Roger Kimball, Mark Krikorian, Michael Ledeen, John Leo, Kathryn Jean Lopez, Rich Lowry, Heather Mac Donald, John O'Sullivan, Daniel Pipes, Phyllis Schlafly, Thomas Sowell, Shelby Steele.

Comprehensive: Jack Kemp, George Shultz, Jean Kirkpatrick, Tamar Jacoby, Grover Norquist, Jeff Bell, Bill Kristol Arthur Laffer, Linda Chavez, Lawrence Kudlow, John Podhoretz, John McWhorter, Max Boot, Vin Weber, Richard Gilder, Ed Goeas, Martin Anderson, J.C. Watts, Ed Gillespie, Clint Bolick, Steve Forbes.

Are you surprised by any name on either of the lists? I am--I'd have guessed Jeanne Kirkpatrick would go to the nationalistic Enforcement party and before I knew more about Ward Connerly I might have predicted he'd join the "comprehensive" camp. Frum-bites-Kristol is always news! And which side would Newt be on if he weren't running for President? ...

P.S.: I agree with Fonte that it's odd to see the Comprehensives try to sway conservatives with the question

"What side of history do conservatives want to be on?"


As if the conservative movement hadn't cut its teeth in the 1950s by resisting just such go-with-the-flow arguments from the hard Left. ... P.P.S.: The comprehensive letter also guiltily hides the issue of semi-amnesty, calling only for "status for the illegal immigrants already here." What kind of status would that be? ... 1:18 A.M. link

I always knew making phone calls leads to nothing but trouble. ... 12:59 A.M.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

The Pink Elephant in the Room: I'm not sure that's a metaphor (for Democrats who voted with Bush on Iraq) that Bill Clinton wants to let loose. ... 1:41 P.M.


Something you probably thought happened decades ago (if you live on the coasts): Foreign car manufacturers are now selling more than half  the cars and trucks bought by U.S. consumers. That includes SUVs. ... Detroit's Big Three manufacturers account for more than half (54.9%) of sales only if you add in sales to fleets. ... Predictable-yet-accurate kf spin: Another milestone for organized labor--"Big Three" is roughly synonymous with "UAW-made." ... [via Autoblog ] 1:19 P.M.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

I try to explain, somewhat unconvincingly, why I find investment banker, Pinchbuddy, and NYT Sacred Cow Steven Rattner so annoying.** Rattner's recent WSJ op-ed on income inequality  offers a good example of one reason. Rattner calls growing income inequality the "mother of all electoral issues," especially because

[f]rom 2000 to 2005, for example, average weekly wages for the bottom 10% dropped by 2.7% (after adjustment for inflation),


Rattner acknowledges that a cause of the erosion of wages at the bottom is the increased supply of unskilled immigrant workers. ("At the least, immigration certainly puts further pressure on wages of lower-income workers whose jobs the new arrivals compete for.") But he doesn't dare draw the logical conclusion--that maybe immigration should be controlled in order to raise incomes at the lower end of the labor market. That wouldn't be Democratically Correct and might inhibit Rattner's chances to one day ... I don't know, be Treasury secretary. Instead, he pontificates smugly

But giving in to politically expedient demands, such as barricading our borders, would be a mistake.

Covering up an obvious logical implication of your argument is a form of intellectual dishonesty, no? Who needs it? ...

P.S.: See this LAT article  (on the economic polarization of Los Angeles neigborhoods) for a similar PC avoidance of even mentioning the effect of immigration on wages at the bottom. ...

P.P.S.: Did I miss the meeting at which the Dem-MSM steering committee decided to make income inequality a big issue in time for the midterms? ... It's certainly a legitimate effort, but at some point the Dems are going to have to see that it leads directly to a contradiction with their Latino base: if we're really serious about raising wages at the bottom we'll want to get control of the inflow of the unskilled before rewarding with citizenship the illegals who make up so much of that inflow. ...

More: Give the NYT's Paul Krugman points for having the balls to confront the policy implications of immigration (and its wage-depressing effect) that Rattner chose to ignore. ...

P.P.P.S.: I've argued we shouldn't worry about income inequality per se, but only as it affects the traditional American ideal of social equality--and the connection between the two is a lot looser than most contemporary liberals will acknowlege. Still, to achieve that ideal it has to be possible for those at the bottom of the labor market who "work and play by the rules," etc., to live a life of dignity and respect. If wages for the unskilled are too low, it makes that very difficult. More important, only an increase in wages at the bottom--like that achieved in the tight labor market at the end of Clinton's term in office--will enable the absorption of the non-working underclass (especially young black men) into the mainstream working society. The underclass, not a rising Gini Index, is the greatest threat to social equality both because those trapped in the underclass have a hard time being treated as equals and because the flight from the underclass, and the crime associated with it, leads to all sorts of neighborhood stratification, not to mention the degradation of common public spaces.) ... But I also think the sheer numerical income inequality that might be achieved if true "open borders" advocates had their way--e.g. inequality on the scale of Rio de Janeiro, for example--might be great enough in itself to threaten social equality. ...

**--Of course, one reason he's annoying is that he's a NYT Sacred Cow! 4:40 P.M. link

If Haynes Johnson were a movie reviewer: The problem with Superman Returns is that Superman "asks no sacrifice from the American people"! ... 3:48 P.M.

Eduwonk seems to think the recent New York charter schools study may be a bit more significant than others think it is. Meanwhile, he doubts the pro-Dem  Center for American Progress is "in the [teachers'] union busting business" with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Too bad! ... 11:56 A.M.

Eric Umansky gains access  to the NYT's unreleased My Times feature ("Where the best minds in journalism help you edit the Web") and finds it very revealing. ... See how Frank Rich builds his cocoon! ... 11:31 A..M.

Monday, July 24, 2006

ABC: It's the Dems Race to Lose! The liberal summer interns who have taken over the writing of ABC's The Note need to get out of Lauriol Plaza!** Here's point #7 in their rundown of GOP midterm troubles:

7. IMMIGRATION: It is still hard to envision a plausible outcome that will help the Republicans in November. Do-no-harm seems their best bet, and even that looks tough.

Huh? Is it really hard to envision an immigration outcome that helps the GOPs in November? How about: Congress remains deadlocked and House members use their enforcement-oriented stand to rally their base? ... Or Congress passes a House-style enforcmenent bill with a comprehensive-reform-later Senate fig leaf--which satisfies voters that at least something has been done. ... Maybe the Note's seemingly warped conclusion is based on an ultra-sophisticated, insider's seat-by-seat analysis of where the Republican base might make a difference. If so, it's an analysis that eluded the Washington Post's Jonathan Weisman, who points to four such seats.  The Post's subhed: "Will the Immigration Issue Save the Republicans?" Guess they can at least envision it. ...

**--P.S.:The Note is so off here that it raises an intriguing, second-tier question: Which Democratic consultant, pollster, or politician are they paying way too much attention to? In 2004 the leading candidate for Note Misleader was Kerry aide Jim Jordan. A good clue as to who's performing similar duties in 2006 might have been contained in today's embarrassingly sycophantic point #6:

6. MR. SCHUMER AND MR. EMANUEL: These cats are not fooling around.

11:09 A.M. link

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Et Tu, Tom? Even WaPo's Tom Ricks, consistent Iraq War critic and author of Fiasco: The American Military Adventure in Iraq, is against withdrawing the troops now. On Meet the Press today he said [ video available here ]:

I think it would be irresponsible to go in there and do what we've done and then walk away from it. There's a lot of Iraqis out there who have committed their lives to helping the Americans do something there. And to abandon those people would be absolutely shameful as well. [Emphasis added]

Sorry, Arianna! ... P.S.: That moral calculation doesn't mean Bush and the Republicans shouldn't be held accountable, but it does complicate the picture for Democratic candidates who might seek to appeal to the "netroots" by one-upping each other on calls for withdrawal. ... 11:58 P.M.

The proverbial plan so crazy it just might work. ... 11:25 P.M.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Hola, Kos! The Blog That Didn't Bark:  Slate's John Dickerson notes that ex-Gov. Mark Warner

has largely been able to skirt the contentious issues so far, though in the latest loyalty test he says he is supporting Joe Lieberman in his Democratic primary race against Ned Lamont. [Emphasis added]

No doubt Warner's Lieberman kiss will earn a strong rebuke from Daily Kos' Markos Moulitsas, even though Warner has hired Kos' buddy Jerome Armstrong. ... It must just be my inferior search skills that prevent me from finding Kos' vehement attack! ... After all, Kos  snipes at Sen. Dodd  and Senators Boxer and Biden for their support of Lieberman in the primary. How is  Warner any different? .... 5:56 P.M link

Is the Democratic elite turning against the teachers' unions?Eduwonk thinks so. Some evidence (and not just from Eduwonk): 1) Democratic Governor-in-waiting Eliot Spitzer of New York has endorsed opening more independent charter schools--which are typically not unionized to the same degree as public schools--after a study  showed many of them to be doing better than their traditional public competitors.** 2)  Speaking at the recent fancy Aspen Institute event, former Clinton official (and now New York City schools chancellor) Joel Klein made a "case that teachers-union contracts are the main obstacle to improving urban education," according to Mort Kondracke:

"The contract protects the interests of adults at the expense of kids," he told a rapt audience, describing how it bars pay differentials based on student performance and service in difficult schools; makes it impossible for principals to fire underperforming teachers; and allows teachers to choose their own professional development tracks, regardless of supply-and-demand needs, such as those for more math and science teachers.

3) Also according to Kondracke, the Soros-approved, pro-Dem Center for American Progress, headed by former Clinton chief of staff John Podesta, has joined with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in an effort  "likely to target teachers unions that resist reform." (CAP says only, "The Chamber will use the results of the analysis to formulate and aggressively advance public policies to improve state education systems ... ") ...

**-- This study seems significant. Is it? I don't trust the NY Post'sanalysis, and look to Eduwonk for guidance. ... Update:RCP's Ryan Sager says the results mean "a little but not a lot"  and explains why. Fred Hess, a charter supporter,  warns more strongly against relying on the study. ... 1:37 P.M. link

ABC Buries the Lede--For a Reason: Here's Point #4 from yesterday's  ABC News Note summary of "key stories" that bear on whether the "Democratic Party [is] on the right track or the wrong track to break from recent electoral patterns ...." Emphasis added:

4. In a front page story, USA Today's Jill Lawrence reports on a resurgence in union membership across the nation and the two main umbrella organizations playing nicely together, which has allowed the House of Labor to move forward with plans to spend $40 million on voter turn out this fall. LINK

Is there "a resurgence in union membership across the nation"? That would be stunning news, since union membership has been in relentless long term decline for fifty years--"from more than 35 percent [in 1955] to 12.5 percent last year, including only 7.9 percent of the private-sector workforce," according to a  Thomas Edsall WaPo piece from September, 2005. But I can't find any mention of this surprising resurgence in union membership in the Post, or the New York Times. I can't find it on Google (to the contrary). I can't find it on the website of the "strategic organizing" Change to Win unions--you'd think they'd boast about it. And there's no mention of it in the USA Today story ABC says reports it. (That's a story about unions raising political campaign money and cooperating with each other, which is different.) Tentative conclusion: It doesn't exist. There's no resurgence in union membership. The Note item is in error. [And "it reflects the subconscious liberal yearnings of whatever MSM summer intern wrote it unaware that the cumbersome legalistic mechanisms of Wagner Act unionism are incompatible with productive success in a fast-moving global high-tech economy"?--ed You said that.] 12:57 P.M. link

Friday, July 21, 2006

I missed Wednesday night's unveiling of the Tesla electric sports car in Santa Monica. ... Prof. Reynolds is skeptical. ... My friend D.L., who drives a souped-up Porsche, was impressed. He emails:

Was at the Tesla event, lots people and everyone got a short ride....

You remember what I said about getting a powerful car makes you happier because everytime you step on the gas you get a little hormonal rush.

Well, this is better.   It's all about the rush, not the motor (which is silent), it feels like space car on wheels.  Like an amusement park thrill ride.   If you ever had a slot car and wondered "Why don't they build big cars like this" - well, they did.   Fun, fun, fun...

The electric-car-from-people-who-like-fast-cars approach has intriguing uncrunchy appeal. Usually fast, sexy cars get all the attention, right? But the Tesla might cause some semiotic confusion among all the L.A. players who've recently bought Priuses because it's considered sexy in Hollywood to not like fast cars. ... Meanwhile: Gas cars are getting out of hand. ... 12:50 P.M.

Rocky Balboa, I.D. Please!  At a well-attended  Zocalo public forum on immigration in L.A. on Wednesday, prominent attorney/activist Connie Rice asserted confidently that one thing the experts agree on is that Americans aren't willing to take meatpacking-plant jobs. Is that right? ... 12:14 P.M.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Who's Driving My Plano?--Update: Kidney heroVirginia Postrel's Dynamist has become the go-to site for the Plano controversy that's gripped the blogosphere by the throat. ... One of Postrel's Dallas readers resurrects the theory--left behind in my  Dunkirk-like evacuation of this blog's earlier position--that the Plano theater "draws people from all over the far-northern suburbs," making Plano B.O. an invalid barometer of a film's popularity among (relatively conservative) Planoites. ... 10:26 P.M.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Everybody's talking about how there's nothing everybody talks about! Bob Wright and I discuss, somewhat inconclusively, the issue of whether the Webbish "long tail" phenomenon will undesirably reduce the sphere of shared culture. E-mailer C. Friedersdorf says it won't

... because even though there are fewer people watching Jay Leno every night, it's now much easier to communicate with all the people who are watching.

When Bob and Mickey were growing up, you went to school if you wanted to talk about the Ed Sullivan Show and hoped your classmates would be talking about it.

Today if you watch even a niche Bravo reality tv show -- say Top Chef or Project Runway -- you go to Technorati an hour after the show ends and find hundreds of people, far more than attend your classes or work in your office, who are talking about that night's show.

One more point:

if the obscure episode of Project Runway happened to include a defining cultural moment -- let's say Heidi Klum's dress slipped off -- someone would post it on YouTube, and people would send it to one another on e-mail, etc.

So years ago, common culture required that everyone be watching something at once. Now the Web allows things that would become defining cultural moments but for an audience to attract that audience after the fact.

How many people say that World Cup head butt live? How many saw it on SportsCenter, on an Internet video clip, etc. later on?

That last, boldfaced argument seems powerful. ... P.S.: Isn't the ubiquitous Web discussion of Chris Anderson's Long Tail book itself a small refutation of the common-culture-is-dead thesis?  ... Update: Here's Anderson himself declaring that "hits aren't dead"-- which would seem to save the sphere of shared culture. Whew! ...  6:52 P.M. link

What you mean "we," Sen. Clinton? When I read in the NYT  that Hillary Clinton had

chastised Democrats Saturday for taking on issues that arouse conservatives and turn out Republican voters rather than finding consensus on mainstream subjects

I thought for one giddy moment that she had actually said something interesting! I should have known better. Media Matters for America  argues that the NYT misreported Hillary's comments--she was really criticizing Republicans when she said

You know, we do things that are controversial. We do things that try to inflame their base so they can turn people out and vote for their candidates. I think we are wasting time.

While Hillary clearly uses "we" in the previous paragraph to mean "we Democrats," she's almost certainly shifted its meaning in this sentence to mean "we Senators." (Listen for yourself here.) Hillary's most dramatic statement of centrist independence turns out to be a case of crappy syntax. ... P.S.: Media Matters didn't act quickly enough to stop non-centrist lefties from taking umbrage. ... Advice to Hillary: Go with it! The NYT is trying to steer you in the winning direction. Dems are so victory-oriented this year it's not enough to bash the available Souljahs--they're in hiding. You have to actively goad the Souljahs to come out of the woodwork to be bashed! ... 12:42 P.M.

Rear-wheel drive, on the march: How do we know? We have stats. ...  [Thanks to reader S.R.] 12:20 P.M.

Mystery Pollster vs. Kos: On bogus charges of Lieberman "push polls."12:50 A.M.

Monday, July 17, 2006

"Progressive Realism": My colleague Robert Wright's bigthink foreign policy op-ed is currently #4 on the NYT's most e-mailed list, and gaining on Shamu! Here are some questions I hope to take up with Wright on bloggingheads.tv tomorrow:

1. Isn't it crude and unfair to accuse President Bush of failing to understand "the perspective of the other," including "why some people hate America, and why terorists kill"? As E.J. Dionne notes, one premise of the neocon "Big Bang" theory on which Bush acted in Iraq was precisely that "authoritarian regimes bred opposition movements rebelling against the conditions under which too many people lived." Sounds like empathy to me!

2. Wright discounts the short-term costs --in terms of frustrated aspirations and resentment--of delaying the introduction of democracy while we wait for its inevitable natural triumph in the wake of free markets and free trade. But Wright gives great weight to the short-term costs of military action, in terms of potential terrorists angered by the Iraq invasion. Some sort of double accounting standard is being applied here, no? Maybe the anger produced by the Iraq war can realistically be discounted because (like authoritarianism) it will disappear by the time the "bioweapons most plausibly available to terrorists" become "effective weapons of truly mass destruction."

3. A global regime based on "highly intrusive inspections" for WMDs may be necessary, but it sounds almost as "wearying" as a regime based on invasion and regime-change--a constant backdrop of cheating and retreating, accompanied by the threat (or the attempt to prod the Security Council into making the threat) of international sanction or military punishment. Think the winter of 2002 made permanent. Is that an appealing future? ...

4. Wright claims that if we wait for "authoritarianism's demise" rather than trying to force the pace thgrough "invasion or American-backed coups d'etat" the result will be "more indigenous, more culturally authentic paths to democracy." Sounds right. But is the messy attempt at democracy now being undertaken by the Iraqis not "culturally authentic"? If anything it seems too authentic--authentically Shiite vs. authentically Sunni. ...

5. If advances in "information technology" and "munitions technology" establish an "alarming principle" under which "grass-roots hatred and resentment of American may be converted into the death of Americans with growing efficiency," how can we possibly reduce hatred enough to save our skins? If, eventually, any 12 angry men--assuming they're reasonably well-educated--will be able to cook up a devastating attack, isn't it hopeless? We'll never lower the number of angry anti-Americans to single digits.

Update: Bob responds to these questions on video here. ...  Instapundit says I "[make] the case for war." I thought I was making a case against a case against war. Not the same thing at all! But I do think it's too early to declare the war a failure the way Dionne does (and George Will doesn't quite). ... 1:54 A.M. link


Bloggingheads--Bob Wright's videoblog project. Gearbox--Searching for the Semi-Orgasmic Lock-in. Drudge Report--80 % true. Close enough! Instapundit--All-powerful hit king. Joshua Marshall--He reports! And decides!  Wonkette--Makes Jack Shafer feel guilty.  Salon--Survives! kf gloating on hold. Andrew Sullivan--He asks, he tells. He sells! David Corn--Trustworthy reporting from the left.  Washington Monthly--Includes Charlie Peters' proto-blog. Lucianne.com--Stirs the drink. Virginia Postrel--Friend of the future! Peggy Noonan--Gold in every column. Matt Miller--Savvy rad-centrism. WaPo--Waking from post-Bradlee snooze. Keller's Calmer Times--Registration required.  NY Observer--Read it before the good writers are all hired away. New Republic--Left on welfare, right on warfare!  Jim Pinkerton--Quality ideas come from quantity ideas. Tom Tomorrow--Everyone's favorite leftish cartoonists' blog.  Ann "Too Far" Coulter--Sometimes it's just far enough. Bull Moose--National Greatness Central. John Ellis--Forget that Florida business! The cuz knows politics, and he has, ah, sources. "The Note"--How the pros start their day. Romenesko--O.K. they actually start it here. Center on Budget and Policy Priorities--Money Liberal Central. Steve Chapman--Ornery-but-lovable libertarian. Rich Galen--Sophisticated GOP insider. Man Without Qualities--Seems to know a lot about white collar crime. Hmmm. Overlawyered.com--Daily horror stories. Eugene Volokh--Smart, packin' prof, and not Instapundit! Eve Tushnet--Queer, Catholic, conservative and not Andrew Sullivan! WSJ's Best of the Web--James Taranto's excellent obsessions. Walter Shapiro--Politics and (don't laugh) neoliberal humor! Eric Alterman--Born to blog. Joe Conason--Bush-bashing, free most days. Lloyd Grove--Don't let him write about you. Arianna's Huffosphere--Now a whole fleet of hybrid vehicles. TomPaine.com--Web-lib populists. Take on the News--TomPaine's blog.  B-Log--Blog of spirituality!  Hit & Run--Reason gone wild! Daniel Weintraub--Beeblogger and Davis Recall Central. Eduwonk--You'll never have to read another mind-numbing education story again. Nonzero--Bob Wright explains it all. John Leo--If you've got political correctness, he's got a column ... [More tk]