Tuesday, September 07, 2004

TODAY'S TOP FIVE: Still Feeling the Zell-mania.

New York State of Mind: Petty, Cowardly In what this Knight-Ridder columnist calls "the most vile, the most despicable act of unsportsmanlike conduct ever committed by a professional sports franchise," the Yankees are asking the baseball commissioner's office to declare a forfeit because the Tampa Bay Devil Rays couldn't make it to New York yesterday for the first half of a doubleheader. Those astute Weather Channel fans among you might be able to imagine a reason why it would be difficult for anyone in Tampa Bay to make punctual travel arrangements. Those astute ESPN fans among you, meanwhile, might conclude that the reason the Yankees are crying like bitches in an effort to get a forfeiture is because their 10.5 game lead over the Red Sox has shrunk to 2.5 in two weeks.

The Mayhem Sweepstakes: Iraq Edition Seven Marines were killed Monday in a suicide bombing attack in Iraq, the largest death toll among U.S. forces in five months. People who talk about "the solution" to the Iraq crisis should take special note. This is "the solution": permanent U.S. occupation of the country, while American soldiers and Iraqi citizens are killed in a slow, steady accumulation.

The Mayhem Sweepstakes: Israel Edition Not to be outdone by senseless bloodshed in Iraq, Israeli airstrikes in Gaza killed at least 14 Palestinians identified as militants in retaliation for a Hamas suicide bombing that killed 16. The Palestinian Prime Minister (the moderate in this situation, remember) has said that "there will be retaliation, and it will be justified." At this rate, this is going to end only when the last Palestinian, a suicide bomber, and the last Israeli, a helicopter gunship pilot, manage to kill each other.

The Mayhem Sweepstakes: Russia Edition What happens if terrorism wins the War on Terrorism? In the wake of the hideous school hostage taking that left at least 335 dead, Russian President Vladimir Putin is ruling out talks with Chechen separatists, ensuring that more than 100,000 Russian troops will continue to occupy the country, which in turn ensures that there will be more terrorist outrages in Russia. Putin has turned this to shrewd political advantage: As he was originally elected on a pledge to end the war in Chechnya, by declining to end that war he can essentially run the same campaign again and again.

The Moronic Leading the Moronic And all this time, we thought we were condescending to HIM: According to White House Chief of Staff Andy Card (he of the "no new products in August" gaffe about the Iraq war), George Bush thinks of the United States "as we think of a 10-year-old child." Given all that Bush has done to this country both at home and overseas, does that make him a child molester?

-Consider Arms