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October 17, 2003
Blogging Around A Little

John McKay points out what Mississippi voters need to know. It's not that Balfour is a racist that should worry them the most. It's that he's an unprincipled opportunist.

Or maybe it is because he's a racist, as he ingeniously tries to deny, and as Kevin discusses.

Avedon Carol is usually an interesting read but this debunking of the Right-wing myth that the Left has anyone as unprincipled, dishonest, and downright undemocratic as Coulter needs to be spread around.

On the other hand, I think the entry on this article, missed an opportunity to point out how ignorant Bill O'Reilly really is. When he says that that the country is "as polarized as it's ever been in the history of the Republic", O'Reilly demonstrates just how little he knows about this country. The current distaste for Bush, his cronies, and his policies hasn't begun to match the rhetoric the Republicans threw at Clinton. And when you consider the "polarization" of Watergate, VietNam, or the Civil War, I think you can see my point. O'Reilly's ratings must be slipping or something, because to me he just sounds desperate to whip up some drama around himself. (Other than that, my assessment of what Kinsley has to say is that, yeah, we thought Bush would be an ineffectual dork but back then we didn't know he was taking orders directly from god and we forgot about his friends. If we'd thought of all that, we'd have been a lot more worried about the future of this country.)

Matthew Yglesias talks about a connection between imprisoning drug dealers and users and lower street drug prices. I assume he's being facetious, except where he points out that prison sentences Do. Not. Work. as a drug policy, but the Urban Institute paper he links to, suggesting, as he says, a radical shift to an evidence-based public policy is the kind of rational reading I enjoy.

For instance, let me point out that if someone had done a study on whether or not incarcerating casual drug users (CDUs) and low-level dealers (LLDs) deterred CDU or LLD and found that it did not, then they wouldn't have had to build all of those prisons and incarcerated all of those CDUs and LLDs and then we'd be able to test Matthew's theory that putting fewer people in prison for drug-related crimes would keep the street price of illegal drugs too high for most of today's casual users to afford. (Okay, absurdity aside, go ahead and read the paper. It's only 8 pages.)

Posted by AnneZook at 08:05 AM