- The Washington Times - Monday, August 12, 2002

Too many points
Former Washington editor of American Prospect magazine Joshua Micah Marshall is piqued at columnist Terry M. Neal of The Washington Post for filching the title of an online column Mr. Marshall has penned for several years (www.talkingpoints.com).
"Hmmmm. Is imitation the sincerest form of flattery? Or did washingtonpost.com just snag the title of this column for its own nefarious purposes? True enough, 'talking points' is a common phrase. But for another column which is a) online, b) about politics, and c) based in Washington, DC. Can't they find another title?" Mr. Marshall wants to know.
"What gives? The corporate media behemoth can just run roughshod over the small independent? That seems to be the idea. I'm under no illusion that everyone in journalism knows about this column," he continued, noting he is "appreciative" that Post media reporter Howard Kurtz has picked up items from the column once a week for almost two years.
"Alas, the small TPM legal department probably can't outgun the big-city law firm sharks who work for the Washington Post Company," Mr. Marshall concluded. "But by all means drop Terry Neal a line and tell him to put a stop to this egregious trespass."

Run, Al, run
At least one person thinks former Vice President Al Gore deserves the chance to run again for the White House.
"He was robbed, and that's a fact," Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe told ABC yesterday.
"This is a primary process, and I have to be totally neutral in this, and I have talked to many candidates who have told me that they are probably going to run. But listen, if you're Al Gore, you get up every morning knowing that you got a half a million more votes than George Bush did," Mr. McAuliffe noted.

Stun, Al, stun
Meanwhile, Time magazine believes Al Gore is "struggling to convince Democratic Party leaders he deserves another shot at the presidency in 2004."
"Now he may be having trouble where it really counts: with his moneymen. The latest setback comes from Jonathan Tisch, the New York City hotelier who has generously backed Gore causes since 1988, giving the Democratic Party $325,000 during Gore's 2000 presidential bid. Sources tell Time that Tisch recently informed Gore he's uncommitted for 2004.
"Democratic insiders were stunned," Time reported in the issue that hits the newsstands today. "Tisch was just one of several Gore loyalists missing from Gore's June 'donor retreat' in Memphis, Tenn. Also AWOL were all but a few Democratic patrons from the key campaign-money centers of Hollywood and New York City. Now, with Tisch's refusal to commit to Gore, the former Veep may have more trouble than he ever imagined raising the $30 million-plus he will need."
Spokesmen for both men had no comment. But "Mr. Gore had lunch at Mr. Tisch's Regency Hotel. His old friend was there too dining with someone else," Time reported.

Dems as commies
Broward County has edited a training video for poll workers that had offended Republican sensibilities. The video showed hypothetical situations including voters with disabilities, language problems and bad manners. One segment showed an agitated white voter confronting a black poll worker.
"I'm voting Republican and do you want to know why? All Democrats are communists," the voter snarls.
"Sir, you are wrong, I'm a Democrat and I'm certainly not a communist," responds the poll worker.
"You're a Democrat? Then you're a communist just like the rest of them. You people shouldn't even be here," the voter replies.
"Our job was to portray offensive situations and how to handle it," election official Bob Cantrell told the Associated Press. "These are real-life situations that have happened. We're very sorry if we offended anybody."
Broward Republican Chairman George LeMieux was indeed offended.
"This is just outrageous," he said. "Why not use a Whig voter or somebody representing another party that doesn't exist?"

Elvis everywhere
Could a Memphis city official have the raw material for an Elvis clone? The interest is intense in that town this week, which is marking the 25th anniversary of the singer's passing.
Tom Morgan, general foreman of property maintenance for Memphis, was given a whole "Taystee Bread bag" full of Presley hair by his old friend Gil Gilleland, once an Elvis barber.
"We can do it. The only problem is that there's a tendency for genetic abnormality to occur. We'd get an Elvis, but maybe he would just want to deliver the mail," said Dr. Dan Goldowitz of the Center of Excellence for Genomics and Bioinformatics at the University of Tennessee.
Cloning authority Dr. Panos Michael Zavos of the University of Kentucky agreed it was "technically possible" to re-create Elvis at least at birth.
"I think everybody wants a piece of Elvis, and you can't get any closer than his hair," Mr. Morgan told the Commercial Appeal.

Fame and fortune
The New York Post thinks Andrew Cuomo doth protest too much.
"In his new campaign ads, Cuomo looks straight into the camera and declares his opponent, Carl McCall, has attacked not only his father, but his wife, Kerry Kennedy Cuomo, as well," the Post observed yesterday.
"And no wonder the wonder boy is on the defensive. His opponent's camp (in the person of Charlie Rangel) hurled the worst insult possible in this culture. He said Kerry is oh, no! not famous," the Post noted yesterday.
"Dear God! Talk about filthy politics. Kennedys have been called convicted murderers, drug-soaked boozers and rapists, but never has one been called a nobody. Infamy is one thing, anonymity is quite another.
"Speaking of bad political advisers, the only ads worse than Cuomo's are those by Sen. Robert Torricelli. Thank God he lives in New Jersey," the Post concluded.

Going to the dogs
They're both panting after Georgia's newly redrawn 7th District. Naturally, the primary contest between Republican Reps. Bob Barr and John Linder is a regular "dogfight," according to the Daily Tribune News in Cartersville.
"One man is like a bulldog, always leaving the doghouse to chase its prey. The other is a poodle, more content to stay at home in a quiet atmosphere," wrote reporter Matt DiFebo.
Both bulldogish Mr. Barr and poodley Mr. Linder were baring their teeth in a recent TV debate, "but the question is, who will be aggressive if re-elected to the House of Representatives? We already know Barr will. Can Linder be aggressive?"
"Toward the end, Linder said he preferred to work privately while staying out of the spotlight. My question is simply this: Do you want your congressman to work out of sight? Not me."
Mr. Linder "wants to be off the radar scope. This is a huge problem. Do we really need another government official working behind closed doors?"
The writer concluded, "One candidate is out in the open. The other prefers the shelter of the doghouse. But even the doghouse has to be aired out once in a while."

A little Liddy time
Republican Elizabeth Dole, who hopes to succeed Jesse Helms as a U.S. senator from North Carolina, had some thoughts about the University of North Carolina's plans to require incoming freshmen to read a book about the Koran.
"For the life of me, I don't know why they would go forward to do that. It's certainly not something that I would have done," she said Saturday on CNN. "But there is a thing called academic freedom, and so that's going to be up to the university to determine, rather than the politicians."
The North Carolina House already has gotten into the act, however. Its appropriations committee voted Wednesday to ban the use of public funds for the assignment unless other religions get equal time.


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