from columns by
Molly Ivins

This page [column headlines]:
Can’t we all be judicious about judges and nominees?
Dragging God into partisan politics is its own kind of sin
There is too an Israel lobby


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Can’t we all be judicious about judges and nominees?

published in the Star Tribune August 11, 2003
Copyright © 2003 by Creators Syndicate, Inc.
originally published August 7, 2003

I keep thinking of Mussolini’s definition of fascism: “Fascism should more properly be called ‘corporatism,’ since it is the marriage of government and corporate power.” When was the last time we saw this administration do something that involved standing up to some corporate special interest in favor of the great majority of the people?



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Dragging God into partisan politics is its own kind of sin

published in the Star Tribune July 11, 2004
Copyright © 2004 by Creators Syndicate, Inc.

Back in the 1950s, when the late Rep. Bob Eckhardt was still in the Texas Legislature, a bill to cut off all state aid to illegitimate children was under debate. After listening to some of his “Christian” colleagues explain why illegitimate children should be left to starve, Eckhardt rose and said, “I am not so much concerned about the natural bastards as I am about the self-made ones.”

Compare to:

Joe Klein



As regular readers know, I call upon the Lord rather frequently myself, often for patience in dealing with those who presume to speak in His name. [...] Drag God into politics, and you’ll ruin His reputation in no time.



text checked (see note) Nov 2006 (against an online and possibly piratical source)

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There is too an Israel lobby

published in the Star Tribune April 28, 2006
Copyright © 2006 by Creators Syndicate, Inc.

Jews who criticize Israel are charmingly labeled “self-hating Jews.” As I have pointed out, that must mean there are a lot of self-hating Israelis, because those folks raise hell over their own government’s policies all the time.

I don’t know that I’ve ever felt intimidated by the knee-jerk “you’re anti-Semitic” charge leveled at anyone who criticizes Israel, but I do know I have certainly heard it often enough to become tired of it.

And I wonder if that doesn’t produce the same result: giving up on the discussion.

It’s the sheer disproportion, the vehemence of the attacks on anyone perceived as criticizing Israel that makes them so odious. Mearsheimer and Walt are both widely respected political scientists—comparing their writing to “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion” is just silly.

It seems to me the root of the difficulty has been Israel’s inability first to admit that the Palestinians have been treated unfairly and, second, to figure out what to do about it. Now here goes a big fat generalization, but I think many Jews are so accustomed (by reality) to thinking of themselves as victims, it is especially difficult for them to admit they have victimized others.

But the Mearsheimer-Walt paper is not about the basic conflict, but its effect on American foreign policy, and it appears to me their arguments are unexceptional. Israel is the No. 1 recipient of American foreign aid, and it seems an easy case can be made that the United States has subjugated its own interests to those of Israel in the past.

Note (Hal’s):
Publication of a working paper, “The Israel Lobby” by John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, set off the furor discussed here.

— end note

text checked (see note) Apr 2006

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Background graphic copyright © 2003 by Hal Keen