Drooling on the Pillow

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Morning Business 

Two of our partners came to the legal profession after being sergeants in the NYPD. They're also two of the nicest lawyers in the firm. Don't know what that means, but it's interesting to me.

Shaking Spears was complaining a couple weeks ago that music doesn't swing anymore. I agreed with him, until this morning when the iGizmo threw up Wayne Hancock and Etta James on the way to work.

If you never heard of Wayne Hancock he does a barely modernized version of Western Swing, recalling Jimmy Rogers and Bob Wills, complete with yodeling. He swings and his band really swings, but he falls into the odd musical category including Sha-Na-Na, Little Charlie and the Nightcats and a bunch of dweebs playing early music on sackbuts -- meticulous recreations of antique music. Obviously it's a love of a particular sound that draws people to this kind of thing, but in Hancock's case it's also that he has the voice for it -- one of those piercing, flat, slightly nasal voices like Ralph Stanley's that you could use instead of Zip Strip. If there's the slightest pitch issue it's god awful, but when it's pure it's, to me, at least, kind of thrilling.

If you haven't heard of Etta James, what the hell's the matter with you?

Did you know we're losing in Iraq? Richard Cohen will explain it to you in today's column, Gaza: Tomorrow's Iraq. I continue to read Cohen because I sense that, rare among major liberal columnists, there is an essential decency there and often an honest effort to understand differing viewpoints. But when you come down to it, he never will escape the all-encompassing Viet Nam paradigm.
It is the solemn obligation of a columnist to connect
the dots. So let's call one dot Iraq and another the
Gaza Strip, and note that while they are far different
in history and circumstance, they are both places
where Western democracies, the United States and
Israel, are being defeated by a common enemy,
terrorism. What is happening in Gaza today will
happen in Iraq tomorrow.
This pointillist approach to foreign policy is a nifty way of grouping unrelated events. Why don't we just note the differences and leave it at that, Richard? Like the fact that we're killing Islamofascists far faster in Iraq than among the Palestinian Death Cult. And the fact that the project in Gaza is to bring the enemy to self rule and the project in Iraq is to bring the enemy to an early grave. There's also a difference between losing and sustaining casualties.

People like Cohen can never see past the helicopter on the roof of the embassy. We will lose because we deserve to lose and when the going gets tough it's time to quit.
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