Wednesday, October 27

"The best laid schemes o' Mice an' Men, Gang aft agley." -- Robert Burns

It doesn't make much sense these days because of the Scottish dialect, but the Burns couplet from "To a Mouse" (which, paraphrased, ends "often go awry"), has been in evidence for me the past few days.

My last post expressed my initial impressions of what has now been dubbed Qaqaagate, and after I wrote it I checked out of the blogosphere for most of the next two days because of my schedule of classes and meetings. Add to that situation the fact that I found Blogger inaccessible for much of yesterday and this morning, and you'll see why I haven't posted in a while.

Basically, all that amounts to is an excuse, but I'd like to think of it as an explanation and apology to my few regular readers.

Imagine my surprise when, Monday afternoon, I stole a quick glance at Drudge, Hugh and Rick and noticed that the NYTimes' "bombshell" was well on its way to being debunked. It's another notch in the collective belt of the blogosphere but, more importantly, it exposes election week media chicanery for what it is: as Cosmo Kramer would say, "The worst fraud perpetrated on the American public since one-hour martinizing."

So the Qaqaa story, which you can read about all over the place (including here and here), has dominated the past few days, with the president effectively calling out today Sen. Kerry's tactless criticism of those he would seek to lead.

I had planned to make this "Louisiana Week" on the Daily Anvil, with big posts yesterday, today and Thursday on issues I've observed locally (that have some national import). Instead, I think I'll reduce it to three rapid-fire posts, with the exception of one I have planned for tomorrow detailing all I understand about the currently invalidated Louisiana Marriage Protection Amendment, which awaits a hearing before the LA Supreme Court. I hope to talk to today with one of the lawyers involved in arguing to sustain the amendment in order to round out my analysis. I'll post shortly today, though, on the Louisiana senate race.

And in case, for some reason, you checked here before you checked Drudge, a few minutes ago he cleared his news links and put up this:

"In the last week before the election, ABCNEWS is holding on a videotaped message from a purported al Qaeda terrorist warning of a new attack on America, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned... MORE..."

Here's the link. It's developing, and I'm sure he'll have more. They're apparently still trying to authenticate the tape, but it's interesting that Drudge would frame this as a case of ABC holding the tape's public release when, in fact, it appears that the tape is still in question.

How serious is the apparent threat? What is its context in the election?

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