Prime-Time Coup

Can you imagine if it was the other way round, and it was Bush who’d won the popular vote but lost the electoral college after a US Supreme Court dominated by Democratic appointees had voted 5-4 to stop counting votes likely to assure a Republican victory in, let us say, Illinois? I think we can […]

The Decay of Letters: Leg-Humping with Tom Wolfe

Someone made the odd, maybe malicious, certainly rash decision to put Tom Wolfe on the right hand side of Harper’s 150th anniversary cover, facing Mark Twain, a leonine, earthy, dignified old devil, sitting in alert repose, apparently listening. A man to whose energetic image the white suit is incidental. Over on the right hand side, […]

The Future Past

Let’s pause a moment before we head for the exits. I’m talking about the spectacular, the ludicrous, the humiliating and uproarious discomfiture of the Y2K doomsayers. How deliciously wrong they were! We’re dealing here with one of the biggest busts since the Edsel.  Are there lessons to be drawn from the fiasco? I suppose the […]

Goodbye to All That

Somewhere around mid-November the Y2K whimpering died down out of sheer exhaustion. Humboldt county is calm. A couple of weeks ago I asked the amiable Jim, proprietor of Western Chainsaw in Eureka, how many generators he’d sold recently and he said two. Then he added that at a sales rep meeting in Fresno near the […]

National Notes

Many people go through life rehearsing a role they feel that the fates have in store for them, and I’ve long thought that Christopher Hitchens has been asking himself for years how it would feel to plant the Judas kiss

Part-Time America & The UPS Strike

Just past the stroke of midnight in the Monday pre-morn of August 3, Ron Carey, Teamster president, called a strike against UPS. What we have here is a struggle over the basic tilt of the American economy. You can sort your way through the last-minute offers, the $3,000 cash bribes put up by UPS to […]

Reggae on the River

I told the mighty editor last Tuesday morning that I’d been to Reggae on the River, and he gave me an incredulous guffaw as if I’d confessed to joining a Robert Bly men’s circle. His bafflement increased when I added that I’d had a pretty good time. It’s true that over the past six years […]

National Notes

BILL’S MOTHER’S MILK: The Bill Clinton Presidential Museum, richly endowed by AFOBs (Asian Friends of Bill), should be quite a place when they get around to putting it up in Little Rock. I look forward to the Governor Bill virtual reality exhibit. 11am — Governor Bill blows HRC a kiss, goes jogging with bodyguards. Swerves […]

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