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« There's A Bear In The Woods. | WILLisms.com | Trivia Tidbit Of The Day: Part 241 -- The Future Of The Electoral College. »

The Third Mainstream Melee.


It's a non-blog adventure.


Los Angeles Times: "Bush Still Popular on Campaign Trail"

Super Succinct Synopsis-

Bush Country has not given up on Bush. Maybe those polls really are bunk (of course they are).

Super Succinct Snippet-

As Bush has demonstrated, his prowess as a fundraiser has not waned, even though his job-approval ratings hover around 40% in most polls.

[Minnesota Republican Mark] Kennedy clearly was pleased to have Bush speak in his behalf, and beamed as he stood beside the president while Bush lavished praise on him.

Bush flourishes in campaign-style stump speaking, especially on behalf of candidates. If Democrats think they are going to take back Congress in 2006, they are in for yet another devastating letdown.



The Economist: "Europe's farm follies"

Super Succinct Synopsis-

Packed with statistics and insights, this article could have easily been the basis for a full-blown Trivia Tidbit. Basically, it examines European farm subsidies. The winners, the losers, the why, the where, and the who.

Super Succinct Snippet-

The Common Agricultural Policy costs European taxpayers over €40 billion ($47 billion) a year, or around 40% of the total EU budget. That is a huge sum, given that farming accounts for less than 2% of the EU's workforce.

Be sure to check the graphs showing which country is the primary beneficiary of these subsidies. If Europe wants to get serious about aiding poor countries, they may want to consider reforming its agricultural subsidies.



Foreign Affairs: "Who Will Control the Internet?"

Super Succinct Synopsis-

Certain foreign elements, predictably, want control of the Internet transferred from the U.S. to an international institution. But we're not going to let that happen so easily, for good reason.

Super Succinct Snippet-

Brazil and South Africa have criticized the current arrangement, and China has called for the creation of a new international treaty organization. France wants an intergovernmental approach, but one fundamentally based on democratic values.{See Footnote 1} Cuba and Syria have taken advantage of the controversy to poke a finger in Washington's eye, and even Zimbabwe's tyrant, Robert Mugabe, has weighed in, calling the existing system of Internet governance a form of neocolonialism.

Ah, the usual suspects. Their complaints are all anyone really needs to know about what is the correct course of action here.



Ocala Star-Banner: "Purple finger of freedom"

Super Succinct Synopsis-

An op-ed examining the magnitude of the emergence of democracy in the Middle East, this piece also offers a suggestion for showing solidarity.

Super Succinct Snippet-

I was having dinner with some people I didn't know well, and I happened to mention that a good deal of my time in recent years has been spent working with Arabs and Muslims on questions relating to democracy.

A Brit sitting across the table leaned in, arched an eyebrow and almost spat at me: "Do they ever tell you to just bugger off?"

I replied, as evenly as I could, that that had not happened. The Arabs and Muslims I have had the opportunity to work with have not needed to be convinced that it's preferable to choose your own leaders. I did not have to sell them on the idea that speaking your mind and not ending up in a mass grave as a result is a good thing. And they decided on their own that they should have the right to worship as they choose.

Show that you care about the march of freedom around the world. Purple your finger next week.



The Wall Street Journal: "Kyoto's Dead Hand"

Super Succinct Synopsis-

A lot of countries are not living up to their spicy rhetoric, mostly aimed at the United States, on global warming.

Super Succinct Snippet-

Kyoto requires developed nations to bring their total greenhouse-gas emissions to 5% below their 1990 levels by 2012. Yet in 2003, emissions were above the 1990 baseline by more than 10% in Italy and Japan, more than 20% in Ireland and Canada, and more than 40% in Spain.

Do as I say, not as I do.


The previous Mainstream Melee.

WILLisms.com and many other blogs sometimes focus too much on our fellow bloggers, while excluding well-done professional journalism from our posts.

The Mainstream Melee is a quick survey of five non-blog sources, coming atchya at completely random intervals. The stories are either underreported, particularly well-written, interesting, or otherwise important to the big picture. But generally there will be a theme of some kind in the choices.

Posted by Will Franklin · 10 December 2005 01:36 PM


I go to the blogs for my news these days. For the most part I have such a hard time watching the news. Reporters these days seem to all think they are commentators??? Real facts are easier to get from the blogs. The MSM is a series of sound bytes that are not necessarily true! The MSM is in it for ratings and money for the most part. Blogs are basically individuals collecting and gathering information that get to the facts! I know the MSM has a few good reporters... I just can't really think of any right off the top of my head. BUT I prefer just the facts man!

Posted by: Zsa Zsa at December 10, 2005 04:19 PM