Saturday, January 20, 2007

Shavuah tov!

Hope your day was as relaxing as mine was.

The National Journal has released their latest rankings for the 2008 election. While former Senator John Edwards is currently ranked in third, I believe he will move up by the end of the year and win the Democratic nomination.

Uh, wow, I did not know that about George Bush. No, not that George Bush but apparently a distant cousin according to Wikipedia. Anyway, I will be adding Israeli historian Michael Oren's book, Power, Faith, and Fantasy: America in the Middle East, 1776 to the Present, to my list of books to read. The Jerusalem Post has an interview with the author which can be found here.

Steve Reed will not be a candidate for Lt. Governor. Previously, his name was one of those rumored in November 2005 to have been interested in the congressional race.

House Speaker Jody Richards and former Secretary of State John Y. Brown III will announce their candidacy on Wednesday morning at 8 AM in Bowling Green as opposed to Tuesday which was previously rumored. The locations on Wednesday will be Bowling Green, Louisville, Frankfort, and Lexington. The locations for Thursday are not confirmed as of this time.

Emory Professor Deborah Lipstadt wrote an column in the Washington Post. Without the shadow of a doubt, this article is by-far a must read and here are some excerpts from the article here.
One cannot ignore the Holocaust's impact on Jewish identity and the history of the Middle East conflict. When an Ahmadinejad or Hamas threatens to destroy Israel, Jews have historical precedent to believe them. Jimmy Carter either does not understand this or considers it irrelevant.

His book, which dwells on the Palestinian refugee experience, makes two fleeting references to the Holocaust. The book contains a detailed chronology of major developments necessary for the reader to understand the current situation in the Middle East. Remarkably, there is nothing listed between 1939 and 1947. Nitpickers might say that the Holocaust did not happen in the region. However, this event sealed in the minds of almost all the world's people then the need for the Jewish people to have a Jewish state in their ancestral homeland. Carter never discusses the Jewish refugees who were prevented from entering Palestine before and after the war. One of Israel's first acts upon declaring statehood was to send ships to take those people "home."

A guiding principle of Israel is that never again will persecuted Jews be left with no place to go. Israel's ideal of Jewish refuge is enshrined in laws that grant immediate citizenship to any Jew who requests it. A Jew, for purposes of this law, is anyone who, had that person lived in Nazi Germany, would have been stripped of citizenship by the Nuremberg Laws.[...]

Carter has repeatedly fallen back -- possibly unconsciously -- on traditional anti-Semitic canards. In the Los Angeles Times last month, he declared it "politically suicide" for a politician to advocate a "balanced position" on the crisis. On Al-Jazeera TV, he dismissed the critique of his book by declaring that "most of the condemnations of my book came from Jewish-American organizations." Jeffrey Goldberg, who lambasted the book in The Post last month, writes for the New Yorker. Ethan Bronner, who in the New York Times called the book "a distortion," is the Times' deputy foreign editor. Slate's Michael Kinsley declared it "moronic." Dennis Ross, who was chief negotiator on the conflict in the administrations of George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, described the book as a rewriting and misrepresentation of history. Alan Dershowitz teaches at Harvard and Ken Stein at Emory. Both have criticized the book. Because of the book's inaccuracies and imbalance and Carter's subsequent behavior, 14 members of the Carter Center's Board of Councilors have resigned -- many in anguish because they so respect Carter's other work. All are Jews. Does that invalidate their criticism -- and mine -- or render us representatives of Jewish organizations?

On CNN, Carter bemoaned the "tremendous intimidation in our country that has silenced" the media. Carter has appeared on C-SPAN, "Larry King Live" and "Meet the Press," among many shows. When a caller to C-SPAN accused Carter of anti-Semitism, the host cut him off. Who's being silenced?
Moving on to the issue of sports and politics, the rivalry between the Indianapolis Colts and New England Patriots have led to a frenzy of friendly wagers between politicians in Indianapolis and Massachusetts.
“The only thing I love more than watching the Patriots play is watching them beat the Colts,” said Sen. John F. Kerry, who placed a friendly wager with Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh. Kerry promised to send Bayh a helping of Boston clam chowder if the Colts win.

Mayor Thomas Menino went even bigger: He promised Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson a lobster dinner with chowder and littlenecks if the Colts live up to their hype this year.[...]

Peterson said he expects an “epic” contest tomorrow. “When time runs out in the fourth quarter, I hope to be on the phone to Mayor Menino placing my order for some world-famous, East Coast lobster,” said Peterson, who promised a steak and shrimp dinner to Menino if the Pats win.

Lt. Gov Tim Murray put seafood and locally brewed beer on the line in a bet with Indiana Lt. Gov. Becky Skillman.

“I look forward to feasting on some fresh seafood as the Colts take their talent all the way to New Orleans,” Skillman said in a statement.
No word yet as to whether Mitch Daniels and Mitt Romney have placed any friendly wagers. As for me, I'm a Colts fan so I'll be rooting for them over the New England Patriots!

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