Wednesday, September 24, 2003

In case you haven't read it yet, check out this article from the Atlantic by David Brooks, which is ostensibly about what the seven Democrat candidates running for the presidency must do in order to have a hope at winning the nomination and / or election. It's really a more general look at the electorate.

They've been reporting that a poll says Wesley Clark would be the favorite to beat Bush as of right now. Just wait a week or two. The boomlet will pop as soon as Clark gets the massive raking that the press is going to do on him. As American economic growth increases and the terrorists in Iraq get weaker and the media begins to report on the fact that in 95% of Iraq things aren't going too badly, Bush will hang on in the polls at least a few points above 50%. If I'm wrong and in a couple of weeks or a month Bush's approval rating is down around 40%, I'll be ready to admit there's a problem.

Seems that Tony King, the "Costa Killer", used to be named Tony Bromwich and did a five-year stretch in chokey for a series of rapes in which he strangled but did not kill the women victims. The English sensationalistic press is all over this one. We're going to declare an Anglosphere scoop on this story, since we were blogging about it before Bromwich / King was even caught. It looks like Dolores Vazquez is going to walk.

The bit of fun is that some British paper, the Sun, I think, paid this guy who is both a lawyer and a "journalist" named David Rojo. Rojo talked his way into a meeting with Bromwich / King in jail and got him to write two letters of apology to the families of the victims he killed, which included a full confession. He then passed on the letters to the Sun, who went full-page cover with them. Now, this is rather unusual in Spain--we're not used to Brit sensationalistic-paper shenanigans around here. It's also rather irregular behavior, to say the least. Maybe "scandalous" would do the trick. They're talking about disbarring Mr. Rojo, Esq., which is no less than he deserves.

The last time Rojo's name came up was when he ghostwrote a novel for TV Oprah-style afternoon host Ana Rosa Quintana a couple of years ago. His ghostwritten book, promoted and sold as being "by Ms. Quintana", turned out to have been plagiarized off Danielle Steel. The book was recalled and pulped. Ms. Quintana's feathers weren't even ruffled.

I just watched Barca play some team from Slovakia in the UEFA cup; Barca brought out its first-string lineup, with the variation of substituting Quaresma for Saviola. The Slovaks were all big, strong, fit guys whose technique was minimal but who kept approaching the Barca goal too frequently. They got like seven corners in the fiirst ten minutes, but couldn't capitalize. They had Barca against the ropes, though. After the half the Slovaks slowed down and Kluivert finally scored a goal--he'd muffed several tries at it. Ronaldinho made a couple of good plays. The Slovaks retreated to their own penalty area, waiting for a kick-and-rush counterattack. Barca couldn't score as Kluivert muffed a couple more chances, and in minute 93 when the Barca guys figured the game was over a Slovak wingman took a long ball and crossed it where one of his men was just arriving and he put it in. Slovaks from Slovakiaville 1; FC Barcelona 1. Ouch.

They showed the Pope on TV. He was drooling. Literally. Can't he resign in a dignified manner?

The squatters are calling a big demo for October fourth; you read it here first. Looks like there are about four squats that are all going to be closed more or less at once, and they're calling for mass popular resistance like in the Paris Commune. Go Cops! Bang 'Em on the Head, Cops! Meanwhile, it looks like that gang of wannabe architects of anarchist propaganda by the deed who got busted by the cops had serious plans. They were going to hit Luis del Olmo, the radio guy, and several other folks they figured had done them wrong.

Aznar went to go see Colonel Gaddafi of Libya on a state visit. I understand Libya is a major supplier of both oil and natural gas to Spain, and that one must at the very least be civil. But we don't have to be any friendlier about it than we need to be. Gaddafi gave Aznar a horse. Aznar had to accept it because you don't turn down a gift you get on a state visit. Well, don't put yourself into the position of having to accept gifts from noxious foul dictator gasbags.

Those who like inoffensive mid-tempo pop-rock might look into a band called Jarabe del Palo, who put on a pretty good show here at the Merce. They're really not bad at all. Santana played last night and he said something about how there were two Americas and he was from the one Bush isn't in charge of, or something like that.

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