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Inside the Beltway: Remembering August 6
Question of the Day
“A most sobering anniversary: August 6. It marks the most serious and heaviest loss of life for our SEAL community in their illustrious service to our country,” says Rep. Scott E. Rigell, who reminds the nation of the helicopter crash one year ago in the Wardak province of Afghanistan that killed 25 members of Navy SEAL Team 6, along with five U.S. Army National Guard and Army Reserve crewmen, one civilian interpreter, seven Afghan commandos and a military working dog. The twin-rotor CH-47 helicopter was brought down by a rocket-propelled grenade; the Taliban were quick to take credit for the attack, which Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta deemed “a reminder that we remain a nation still at war.”
Mr. Rigell also took to the House floor recently to read a poem written by Albert Carey Caswell, a veteran guide in the U.S. Capitol who has written verses of remembrance to honor both the living and the dead since 1984. His work has been entered into the Congressional Record on multiple occasions by admiring lawmakers. “We Stood,” which Mr. Caswell wrote for the Aug. 6, 2011, crash, was entered into the publication Thursday by Rep. Steve King, Iowa Republican. An excerpt:
“Troops mount up, as Heaven calls Move on! Move out!
“As there are 30 more new angels, in the army of Our Lord to fight that battle, who shall not pause, and so watch over us all.”
“UK policymakers scared so many folks before the Olympics that London is a deserted city: non-olympic tourists are away; londoners are gone!” mourned New York University economist Nouriel Roubini, in one of five tweets he sent Sunday that examined the phenomenon. Mr. Roubini calls the 2012 Summer Games an economic failure due to “excess warnings,” ultimately deeming poor old London a “zombie city.”
“When Texas voters heard that Ted Cruz did not play well with others, the first thing they said was ‘send him to Washington,’” observed George Will during an appearance on ABC News “This Week,” regarding Mr. Cruz’s bodacious victory in the recent Texas Republican primary.
But Mr. Cruz appears willing play with others, as long as they are fiscal conservatives.
“I am perfectly happy to compromise and work with anybody, Republicans, Democrats, libertarians, I’ll work with Martians, if — and the ‘if’ is critical —they are willing to cut spending and reduce the debt,” the U.S. Senate hopeful told “Fox News Sunday.”
Yes, there are coveted Hollywood connections for presidents, and those who pine to be president. There also are Broadway connections. And for the Democrats, Vice President Joseph R. Biden appears deft at finessing such things. He’ll be in a cameo role with song and dance guy Nathan Lane at a fundraiser for President Obama on Aug. 24 that should really include footlights and a velvet curtain. There will be performance by James Taylor; guest hostesses include actresses Julianne Moore, Edie Falco and Jane Holzer for the glittering event at the $32 million weekend country estate of Ellen Chesler and Matthew Mallow, way-y-y-y-y out on Long Island. Tickets for “East End for Obama” go up to $10,000 per person, which include a photo with Mr. Biden. The president himself will not attend.
The Veep, meanwhile, is comfy cozy with it all. Mr. Biden has vacationed several times in nearby Southampton, visiting with technology entrepreneur David Bohnett, frequenting Cryder Beach and the Southampton Golf Club, and strolling the local shops with wife Jill Biden.
A STAR IS BORN
Clint Eastwood’s cordial endorsement of Mitt Romney at a fundraiser Friday evening did more than make Mr. Romney’s day. It generated much international press among journalists intrigued for better or worse by the emergence of the octogenarian actor in the Republican corner. Among the headlines 48 hours afterwards: “Romney gets out a big gun” (Sydney Morning Herald), “Go ahead, elect my Mitt” (Capitol Hill Blue), “The good, the bad and the bromance” (Village Voice), “Mitt gets his big Hollywood endorsement” (the Atlantic), “After ‘Halftime in America’ flap, Eastwood backs Romney” (Fox News).
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