Just a brief briefing of a few things that caught my eye this morning.


Has anyone noticed anything approaching hysteria in Albuquerque? No? I didn’t think so. Me neither.

But there it was right in the Los Angeles Times. Or as Al Martinez, who used to write a column for the paper before some bean counter lopped his head off, called it: The LA (by God) Times.

The story was on Manny Ramirez coming to play a few games with the Isotopes.

The general manager of the Dodgers’ triple-A affiliate, Traub has been involved in minor league baseball for 17 years. He said he has never seen anything like the hysteria that overtook Albuquerque when news broke that Ramirez could be headed its way.


Former New Mexico representative Heather Wilson writes in The Washington Post that we have a problem with cyber-security. Wilson served on the House intelligence committee for six years. She writes in the Post:

Congressional computers have been penetrated, probably by the Chinese. The avionics system of the F-22 fighter may be compromised. Computers of our presidential candidates were hacked into — and probably not by teenagers on a lark. Last year’s advance of Russian tanks into Georgia was accompanied by the disruption of Georgian government computer systems.

These are only public manifestations of a new reality: Attacks on computer systems will be an integral element of future conflict, and the United States is more dependent on computer networks than any other nation.


Pulitzer Prize winner Leonard Pitts offers a good argument that when it comes to race, the Republican party needs to take a good look at itself.

First, he offers Sherri Goforth, an aide to a Tennessee state senator, who sent out an e-mail depicting 44 American presidents, 43 of whom are shown in dignified poses. Barack Obama is shown as cartoon spook eyes against a black backdrop.

Then there’s this:

Well, after Goforth’s e-mail, after “Barack the Magic Negro,” and John McCain‘s campaign worker blaming a fictional black man for a fictional mugging, and a party official in Texas renaming the executive mansion “the black house,” and an official in Virginia claiming Obama‘s presidency would see free drugs and “mandatory black liberation theology,” and a Republican activist in South Carolina calling an escaped ape one of Michelle Obama’s “ancestors,” it seems wholly fair to me. Indeed, overdue.


Stanley Fish considers the question in his New York Times blog:

In fact – and this is what (Sonia) Sotomayor means when she talks about reaching a better conclusion than a white man who hasn’t lived her life – rather than distorting reality, perspectives illuminate it or at least that part of it they make manifest. It follows that no one perspective suffices to capture all aspects of reality and that, therefore, the presence in the interpretive arena of multiple perspectives is a good thing. In a given instance, the “Latina Judge” might reach a better decision not because she was better in some absolute, racial sense, but because she was better acquainted than her brethren with some aspects of the situation they were considering. (As many have observed in the context of the issue of gender differences, among the current justices, only Ruth Bader Ginsburg knows what it’s like to be a 13-year-old girl and might, by virtue of that knowledge, be better able to asses the impact on such a girl of a strip-search.)