The Weekly Wrap

Feb 24 2012 @ 10:37pm

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Friday on the Dish, Andrew explained his longing for a Santorum victory, parsed Ron Paul's motivation in joining Romney's attacks on Rick, and warned Michigan Dishheads that he'd be coming their way for an all-star panel on Monday. We read the Michigan tea leaves, pictured Romney's enthusiasm problem, used Mitt as a lens to grasp the GOP's fundamental impulses, a Romney spox waxed chutpahriffic about Santorum, gaped at the two candidates debating Arlen Specter, Rick didn't hearken back to the 50s, Santorum accused Obama of indoctrinating our youth with low tuition, and the former Senator may (or may not) have gained inroads among women voters. Third party candidates needed to be rich and egotistical, the autobailout's popularity outside of Michigan wasn't clear, and the President couldn't control gas prices (follow-up here). Ad War Update here.

Andrew also outlined his approach to religion in public life, got concerned by marriage equality referenda, told the GOP to get used to this coming out story, previewed Jim Manzi's book on instantiating the conservatism of doubt, zeroed in on Obama's war on medical marijuana (and, apparently, The Cannabis Closet), and wondered if an Iran war can be presented. Iran couldn't bomb the US, Syria unraveled, toppling Qaddafi didn't do much for American interests, and the Arab Spring needed to produce economic reforms.America abused foreign laws, US regulatory complexity got another look, Medicaid clients sheltered the benefit from cuts, and Congressional demographics were unrepresentative (to say the least). Readers went after the vegetarianism and fake meat post and kept up the homeschooling discussion, retiring at the end of life seemed odd, the Oscars required interactivity to improve ratings, the new Pixar film looked empowering, and an old Japanese scroll was all about farting.

Chart of the Day here, AAA here, Creepy Ad here, Yglesias Nominee here, Quote for the Day here, VFYW here, MHB here, and FOTD here.

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Salzburg, Austria, 3.47 pm

Thursday on the Dish, Andrew kept putting the heat on Santorum's flagrantly un-Catholic support for torture, questioned the taste of a "particular" portrayal of Rick, analyzed more polling suggesting this primary was helping reelect Obama, and wanted more out of the President's tax reform policy. We looked at more reax to the Mesa debate, gaped at just how far Romney's defense of Arizona as a national immigration model put him, explained why Mitt was the prohibitve favorite in the state, and noticed him hitting a big donor wall. The candidates seemed able to prevent a brokered convention, veep frontrunner Rubio grew up Mormon, Obama used the presidency to protect faith, religion took over the right-wing views of the President on the economy, the auto-bailout helped the President, and the research on negative advertising was tricky.

Andrew wrote a short eulogy for Marie Colvin (a journalist killed by Assad forces in Homs, whose last blog post we linked to here), we examined the prospects for a non-violent resolution of the conflict, and American needed to chill out about its global non-problems. DOMA looked cooked, abortion became more common in the recession, buying from all-black business vexed, a writer apologized for a racist headline, people didn't get homeschooling, and a film on bullying met the censor. Borat's creator got banned from the Oscars, readers debated HBO's (pernicious?) influence on TV, and copyright inhibited creativity. Recipe patenting was possible (albeit silly), refusing police searches was also possible (and advisable, and leaks to journalists happened as a consequence of infighting. Vegetarians had to eat lab-grown meat, humanity's core nature was not having one, money made you heartless, evolution sorta explained baldness, amd readers enjoyed the reflections on aging and attraction (one by way of a sonnet later repurposed for Romney). AAA here, Yglesias Nominee here, Chart of the Day here, Quotes for the Day here and here, Tweet of the Day here, VFYW here,  MHB here, and FOTD here.

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By Jean-Christophe Verhaegen/AFP/Getty Images

Wednesday on the Dish, Andrew liveblogged that snippy GOP debate, hammered Santorum on his blatant disregard for Church teachings on torture, criticized the idea that his social views could be calle conservative, and credited Obama with approaching the culture war with grace. We grabbed reax to the debate, wondered if this was the last one, were skeptical about Santorum's chances in the general, told the story of Romney's long slouch towards being pro-life, and examined whether oil prices could hurt the President. Ad War Update here.

Andrew also posted a selection from "the greatest of all poems" on Ash Wednesday (another's reflection here) and defended the idea that we should research drugs as a means of promoting happiness. A plan for helping Syria without guns was proposed, violence surrounding Qu'ran desecration provoked rethinking on the text's status, and Americans didn't riot like other countries anymore. Romney's tax plan provoked pundits in our reax, Obama's recovery impressed, and a think tank failed to think. Science rearranged political alliances, metaphors did poor justice to scientific research, and personality differences didn't always mandate diagnoses.

Veterinarians saved humans too, animals myths got debunked, and McDonald's small step to help pigs wasn't nearly enough. The future looked bright, recipes were unpatentable, the homeschooling war raged on, muscles weren't always attractive in America, and HBO (debatably) ruined television. A reader penned a lengthy dissent to Andrew's support for legalized prostitution, a number chimed in on both sides of the Buchanan debate, and one bared his soul about loving his physically unattractive wife.

Quote for the Day here, Moore Nominee here, Malkin Nominee here, AAA here, VFYW here, FOTD here, and MHB here.

Tuesday on the Dish, Andrew blasted Santorum's social radicalism, marveled at Mitt's tree pandering, guffawed at Romney scion Craig's ridiculous tumblr, caught Craig red-handed treating a fish in his father's Seam(us)-ful footsteps (reup here), and conjectured about what Shelly was playing at. We launched the Romney caption contest (winner above with runners-up here), sized up Mitt's light war chest, tracked the anti-Santorum backlash from one prominent Romney backer, debunked the Catholic vote myth, defended SuperPACs, and worried about a brokered convention. Ad War Update here.

Andrew also thought deeply about how the closet's tyranny shaped Whitney Houston's life, doubled down on his defense of Pat Buchanan (follow-up here), was disgusted by American soldiers burning a Koran, and pondered the results of our Urtak poll on the US reaction to a potential Iran war. We grabbed reax to the Greek deal, debated parallels between Iraq in 2002 and Iran in 2012, spotted some lobbying on the topic in Congress, figured out how many nukes we needed, projected that Obama's drone wars would bring some grim consequences, and got concerned that indefinite detention would last as long as al-Qaeda did.

Jeremy Lin revealed the differences between American and Chinese professional sports culture, the US got older sans immigrants, homeschooling swung left, and the Prop 8 case developed. America choked on red tape, Finland's intense teacher education paid off, photographing the recession was a huge task, and the Heavy Press Program made our military technology. A statistician predicted crime, cognitive enhancement created ethical conundrums, the chicken matrix aimed at taking animal welfare out of food farming, and gibbons were dicks. Chart of the Day here, AAA here, Quotes for the Day here and here, VFYW Contest Winner here, VFYW here, FOTD here, and MHB here.

- Z.B.