Monthly Archives: March 2007

Weekly Review — March 27, 2007, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

The Cloaca Maxima, 1872 The U.S. House of Representatives passed a timetable for ending the Iraq war by a six-vote margin. The bill mandates American withdrawal in September 2008 if the Bush Administration meets certain benchmarks, earlier if it does not. Several Democrats voted against the timetable because it was not sufficiently antiwar, and Republicans derided the inclusion of domestic provisions benefiting spinach growers, citrus farmers, salmon fishermen, and peanut storers. “What does throwing money at Bubba Gump, Popeye the sailor man, and Mr. Peanut have to do with winning a war?” asked Representative Sam Johnson of Texas. “I will …

Weekly Review — March 20, 2007, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

Caught in the Web, 1860. Congress continued its inquiry into the role of the Bush Administration in last year’s firing of eight U.S attorneys. D. Kyle Sampson, the chief of staff for U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, resigned after claiming, in an apparent attempt to save Gonzalez from the charge of lying to Congress, that he did not tell his superiors at the Justice Department that the White House wanted to fire the prosecutors. The Justice Department released a March 2005 email from Sampson to then-White House counsel Harriet Miers, in which he ranked all 93 U.S. attorneys on their …

Weekly Review — March 13, 2007, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

An audit by the inspector general of the United States Justice Department charged that the FBI has engaged in “serious misuse” of the USA Patriot Act to collect the confidential phone, bank, and credit records of U.S. citizens without first obtaining a search warrant.CNN.comThe scandal surrounding the firing of eight federal prosecutors continued to unfold as it became clearer from congressional testimony that the attorneys had resisted political pressure from the White House to subordinate law enforcement priorities to partisan politics. Karl Rove admitted that he had passed along complaints from the New MexicoRepublican Party chairman about U.S. Attorney David …

Weekly Review — March 6, 2007, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

In a videoconference with Hong Kong investors, former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan said that America might sink into recession by year’s end; a frenzied worldwide sell-off ensued. The Shanghai Composite lost 8.8 percent of its value in a day, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 3.3 percent, its worst drop since September 17, 2001. “Alan Greenspan really needs to sit down,” said one economist, “and be quiet.” Others marveled at the ability of “the Maestro” to cause upheavals even in retirement; Greenspan later held another videoconference, for which he charges fees of $150,000, and said that a recession …

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"Gun owners have long been the hypochondriacs of American politics. Over the past twenty years, the gun-rights movement has won just about every battle it has fought; states have passed at least a hundred laws loosening gun restrictions since President Obama took office. Yet the National Rifle Association has continued to insist that government confiscation of privately owned firearms is nigh. The NRA’s alarmism helped maintain an active membership, but the strategy was risky: sooner or later, gun guys might have realized that they’d been had. Then came the shootings at a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, and at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, followed swiftly by the nightmare the NRA had been promising for decades: a dedicated push at every level of government for new gun laws. The gun-rights movement was now that most insufferable of species: a hypochondriac taken suddenly, seriously ill."

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