Round Robin

  • In light of the assaults on eminent domain and flag burning (and with the frightening prospect of Justice Rehnquist resigning looming in the air), there’s at least some good news on the Corporation for Public Broadcasting/PBS budget cuts. Yesterday, the House of Representatives voted by a 284-140 vote to rescind the $100 million cutback. And that’s really what current politics is about these days: finding scant hope in small victories while the fiber and sanctity of this nation is gutted. So bust out the party poppers while the apocalypse ravages across the heartland.
  • The so-called “Pope” has published a book that urges all non-believing Europeans to live as though God exists. If that fails, then there’s always putting on a tin hat and looking for crop circles in the hinterland.
  • It looks like Limbaugh and Noonan are running away from the Klein book. Their latest amusing claim is that The Truth About Hilary was “written and published by a bunch of left-wingers.” Well, that’s pretty interesting, given that Sentinel, the publisher of the book, describes itself on its webpage as “a dedicated conservative imprint within Penguin Group (USA) Inc. It has a mandate to publish a wide variety of right-of-center books on subjects like politics, history, public policy, culture, religion and international relations.”
  • Cynthia Ozick talks with the Melbourne Age.
  • The Connection continues its series of writers talking about other writers who have influenced them. The latest audio installment is Russell Banks talking about Jack Kerouac’s On the Road.
  • Evil Dead star Bruce Campbell is on a book tour for his new novel, Make Love the Bruce Campbell Way.
  • So can James Frey follow up the intensity of A Million Little Pieces with his new memoir? Mike Thomas of the Chicago Sun-Times talks with Frey and learns that Frey’s life is “sort of surreally magnificent.”
  • James McManus has been tapped to write a poker column for the New York Times. Executive editor Bill Keller says that McManus’ column will be “a literate combination of the drama, strategy, psychology and color of card play that should interest both serious players and the simply curious.” This from a guy whose idea of literacy is questionable at best.