вторник, 6 марта 2012 г.

The Zeitgeist Checklist BY DANA MILBANK

A FOUL WHIFF OF FREEDOM

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

1Middle East. Something is spreading in the region, and it isn'tdemocracy. White House blames Iran and Syria for Hezbollah raid intoIsrael, which bombs Beirut airport, Lebanese bases and TV station.While Israel also fights Hamas in Gaza and rockets reach Haifa,President Bush vows to send Iran's nuke program to the SecurityCouncil. Does a regional apocalypse loom? Oil: $78 a barrel. Gas:Fuhgedaboudit.

CRUEL: MORE UNUSUAL

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

2War on Terrorism. Bush's moves to give Geneva Convention rightsto terrorism detainees and to subject his warrantless wiretappingprogram to court review are seen on the Hill as major caves.Meantime, judicial nomination of Pentagon counsel William Haynesfounders over his role in torture memos. Has Congress found itsnerve? Don't count on it: A forum at the center-right AmericanEnterprise Institute finds that Congress is at its wimpiest and mostdysfunctional in more than a century.

NEXT TIME WE'LL REALLY, REALLY MEAN IT

Last week: 1 Weeks on list: 3

3North Korea. Kim Jong Il appears to have called the U.S. bluffsuccessfully. The United States and Japan pushed for a resolutionwith teeth -- but China and Russia agree to sign on only afterremoving mandatory sanctions for noncompliance.

ALL TERRORISM IS LOCAL

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

4Homeland Security. India blames Kashmir rebels for bombs ontrains in Mumbai (ne Bombay), but Atlanta, Los Angeles, New York andWashington, taking no chances, step up mass-transit security. SenateRepublicans join the Bush administration in concluding N.Y. and D.C.are not in harm's way: The chamber knocks down an attempt to restore$750 million in anti-terrorism money taken from the two for the likesof Omaha. Internal review finds DHS thinks a mule festival, ice-cream parlor and kangaroo conservation center are all criticalterrorism targets.

HE'S NO JUDY MILLER

Last week: 4 Weeks on list: 3

5Scandal. Bob Novak, whose column about Valerie Plame and JoeWilson started the CIA leak case, confesses that he outed his sourcesto Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald. Further indictments areunlikely -- but Wilson tries to keep hope alive by filing a lawsuitagainst Dick Cheney, Karl Rove and Scooter Libby.

CRIME EMERGENCY

Last week: 2 Weeks on list: 3

6Iraq. In observance of a visit by Defense Secretary DonaldRumsfeld, the sectarian violence spreads to horrendous new levels, asscores are killed in one of the bloodiest weeks yet. Iraqi PrimeMinister Nouri al-Maliki announces a trip to Washington later thismonth, but we have our own problems: Police Chief Charles Ramseydeclares a "crime emergency" because of 14 killings this month androbberies on the Mall.

CHILLING EFFECT

Last week: 7 Weeks on list: 2

7Democrats. Court gives Congress -- not to mention Rep. WilliamJefferson (D-La.) -- the cold shoulder, deciding it was okay forthe administration to search Jefferson's office after $90,000 inalleged bribe money was found in his freezer. Bad for House GOPleadership's balance-of-power claims; good for GOP midterm campaigns.

TUBES AND TRUCKS

Last week: 9 Weeks on list: 2

8Technology. The tech world is fascinated by Chris Anderson's book"The Long Tail" about how Internet retailers are spurring a revivalof niche products. But Washington, sans Al Gore, isn't so savvy. TheHouse votes to crack down on online gambling. And Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) announces at a hearing that the Internet is "not a big truck"but a "series of tubes." Further, he discloses, "an Internet was sentby my staff at 10 o'clock in the morning on Friday and I got ityesterday."

NOW WHERE IS THAT VETO STAMP?

Last week: 8 Weeks on list: 3

9Culture wars. Bush has been in office for 51/2 years withoutvetoing a single piece of legislation. But he has threatened to vetolegislation that would expand federal support for stem-cell research.The House has already passed a bill defying Bush, and the Senate willtake it up this week after overcoming reluctance to debate a socialissue that favors Democrats.

GREAT EXPECTATIONS

Last week: 6 Weeks on list: 3

10Economy. Stocks plunge over oil fears, while Bush gets littlecredit for a bullish budget forecast. Everybody plays down thecrowing after economists friendly to Bush call a lower deficitforecast the result of earlier inflated forecasts. A reminder thatMedicare and Social Security are going bust comes in paragraph 31 ofBush's 39-paragraph East Room speech.

The Zeitgeist Checklist BY DANA MILBANK

A FOUL WHIFF OF FREEDOM

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

1Middle East. Something is spreading in the region, and it isn'tdemocracy. White House blames Iran and Syria for Hezbollah raid intoIsrael, which bombs Beirut airport, Lebanese bases and TV station.While Israel also fights Hamas in Gaza and rockets reach Haifa,President Bush vows to send Iran's nuke program to the SecurityCouncil. Does a regional apocalypse loom? Oil: $78 a barrel. Gas:Fuhgedaboudit.

CRUEL: MORE UNUSUAL

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

2War on Terrorism. Bush's moves to give Geneva Convention rightsto terrorism detainees and to subject his warrantless wiretappingprogram to court review are seen on the Hill as major caves.Meantime, judicial nomination of Pentagon counsel William Haynesfounders over his role in torture memos. Has Congress found itsnerve? Don't count on it: A forum at the center-right AmericanEnterprise Institute finds that Congress is at its wimpiest and mostdysfunctional in more than a century.

NEXT TIME WE'LL REALLY, REALLY MEAN IT

Last week: 1 Weeks on list: 3

3North Korea. Kim Jong Il appears to have called the U.S. bluffsuccessfully. The United States and Japan pushed for a resolutionwith teeth -- but China and Russia agree to sign on only afterremoving mandatory sanctions for noncompliance.

ALL TERRORISM IS LOCAL

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

4Homeland Security. India blames Kashmir rebels for bombs ontrains in Mumbai (ne Bombay), but Atlanta, Los Angeles, New York andWashington, taking no chances, step up mass-transit security. SenateRepublicans join the Bush administration in concluding N.Y. and D.C.are not in harm's way: The chamber knocks down an attempt to restore$750 million in anti-terrorism money taken from the two for the likesof Omaha. Internal review finds DHS thinks a mule festival, ice-cream parlor and kangaroo conservation center are all criticalterrorism targets.

HE'S NO JUDY MILLER

Last week: 4 Weeks on list: 3

5Scandal. Bob Novak, whose column about Valerie Plame and JoeWilson started the CIA leak case, confesses that he outed his sourcesto Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald. Further indictments areunlikely -- but Wilson tries to keep hope alive by filing a lawsuitagainst Dick Cheney, Karl Rove and Scooter Libby.

CRIME EMERGENCY

Last week: 2 Weeks on list: 3

6Iraq. In observance of a visit by Defense Secretary DonaldRumsfeld, the sectarian violence spreads to horrendous new levels, asscores are killed in one of the bloodiest weeks yet. Iraqi PrimeMinister Nouri al-Maliki announces a trip to Washington later thismonth, but we have our own problems: Police Chief Charles Ramseydeclares a "crime emergency" because of 14 killings this month androbberies on the Mall.

CHILLING EFFECT

Last week: 7 Weeks on list: 2

7Democrats. Court gives Congress -- not to mention Rep. WilliamJefferson (D-La.) -- the cold shoulder, deciding it was okay forthe administration to search Jefferson's office after $90,000 inalleged bribe money was found in his freezer. Bad for House GOPleadership's balance-of-power claims; good for GOP midterm campaigns.

TUBES AND TRUCKS

Last week: 9 Weeks on list: 2

8Technology. The tech world is fascinated by Chris Anderson's book"The Long Tail" about how Internet retailers are spurring a revivalof niche products. But Washington, sans Al Gore, isn't so savvy. TheHouse votes to crack down on online gambling. And Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) announces at a hearing that the Internet is "not a big truck"but a "series of tubes." Further, he discloses, "an Internet was sentby my staff at 10 o'clock in the morning on Friday and I got ityesterday."

NOW WHERE IS THAT VETO STAMP?

Last week: 8 Weeks on list: 3

9Culture wars. Bush has been in office for 51/2 years withoutvetoing a single piece of legislation. But he has threatened to vetolegislation that would expand federal support for stem-cell research.The House has already passed a bill defying Bush, and the Senate willtake it up this week after overcoming reluctance to debate a socialissue that favors Democrats.

GREAT EXPECTATIONS

Last week: 6 Weeks on list: 3

10Economy. Stocks plunge over oil fears, while Bush gets littlecredit for a bullish budget forecast. Everybody plays down thecrowing after economists friendly to Bush call a lower deficitforecast the result of earlier inflated forecasts. A reminder thatMedicare and Social Security are going bust comes in paragraph 31 ofBush's 39-paragraph East Room speech.

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