Our Editorial Policy

August 1, 2005

DU uses numbers to decide what to blog – anything that merits our readers’ attention has to be in some sense true – not just another of the million opinions out there. So here’s how DU reacts to today’s top four headlines in the London and Washington Times.

London Times

London bomb suspect charged with terrorism
Interesting. Italians have a long history of releasing terrorists, so don’t get interested until they hand him to the Brits. But the Brits have a long history of releasing terrorists too! So the only story here is whether these societies can change.

Bush bypasses Senate to appoint Bolton to UN
Yawn. Clever misinformation – the London Times is anti-Bush.

Tributes to King Fahd of Saudi Arabia who died today
Yawn. Saudi Arabia is a Fear State. It ranks at one of the world’s most un-free nations (along with Libya, Syria, Cuba, Burma and NoKo) and has a corruption index the same as China & Syria. So basket case, don’t bother looking at them until they have a revolution.

Controversy over troop cuts for Northern Ireland
The most interesting story of the four. Blair is abandoning part of the United Kingdom to a bunch of thugs. I’ve been tracking him on this, latest here. Can Brit society recover from a pusillanimous Prime Minister?

Washington Times

7 more arrested in Britain
Interesting. The US MSM is following the Brit campaign post 7/7 very carefully. Initially they were afraid of a Spanish cut-and-run from Iraq. Now they’re contrasting Brit anti-terror favorably with its US equivalent. Actually, the US does some counter-terror things much better than the Brits, and vice-versa (the CIA is awful). Working on this.

Mexican mercenaries expand base into U.S.
Big Issue, for which I’m (painfully) building the numbers to answer the question: is Mexican immigration a net gain to the US or a net loss? My guess is the former, but most of the conservative blogosphere thinks otherwise. The reason it’s important is population growth – without hispanic immigration, the US is headed into the same demographic pit as Japan & Europe.

Santorum calls out Hillary on raising children
Big Issue. Hillary Clinton may be the next President, in which case all hell will break loose since she’s an isolationist. This story is about Republicans trying to position her as a nasty socialist. She’s a bit more complex than that, and I’m modeling her likely policy choices & will post sometime.

Dieters sweet on candy


Don’t Believe Everything You Read In The Times

August 1, 2005

The London Times misinforms its readers about the Bolton appointment. Mind you, I think he’s wasted there – the UN, which is bound to have a corruption level of its average member – Syria – seems unrepairable.

Here’s what the Times told its readers.

President Bush sidestepped the Senate and installed John Bolton as US Ambassador to the United Nations today.

The President invoked a rarely-used executive power to fill important posts while the Senate is in recess to end a five-month impasse with Democrats, who refused to accept Mr Bolton’s nomination.

This should have read.

President Bush sidestepped a minority of the US Senate and installed John Bolton as US Ambassador to the United Nations today.

The President invoked a commonly used executive power to fill important posts while the Senate is in recess to end a five-month impasse caused by some Democrats, who had manipulated Senate procedures to prevent the Republican majority confirming Bolton’s nomination.

Democrats, who are members of the minority party in the Senate, used procedural trickery to block Bolton’s confirmation.

A filibuster does not equate to a rejection; it means that the minority refused to let the Senate vote to accept or reject the nomination. Bolton did not get rejected by the Senate at all, and had the Democrats not filibustered the vote, he would have won confirmation, albeit on a narrow margin. That foregone conclusion led the Democrats to stage the filibuster in the first place.

Recess appointments are commonly not rarely used – Presidents have made more than one a month over the past 28 years – hat tip EU Rota:

Per Lexis-Nexis President George W. Bush has made less than 20 recess appointments since January 2001, approximately 5 per year.

Bill Clinton made 140 recess appointments, 17.5 per year.

George H.W. Bush made 77 recess appointments from 1989 to 1992, 19.25 per year.

Ronald Reagan made 243 recess appointments from 1981 to 1989, 30.38 per year.

Jimmy Carter made 68 recess appointments from 1977 to 1981, 17 per year.

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