• The Voice of America (V.O.A.) reports that, with the close of the Democratic National Convention, the campaign "has entered a new phase, with both major party candidates criss-crossing the country in search of votes."

    But one candidate still has his 4-day commercial coming up. It will be interesting to see if Kerry breaks with tradition and attacks the President during the week of the Republican Convention. He really has to do so.

    He is desperate. He's didn't get his Edwards bounce, he is not getting his convention bounce, and none of the standard rules seem to apply. He has to unseat an incumbant who is extremely popular with half the country, and he himself is extremely popular with none of it.

  • I heard Democrat strategist Robert G. "Bob" Beckel this afternoon on FNC. He was on Neil Cavuto's show opposite former Congressman Rick Lazio (R-New York), and they were chewing on the lackluster growth rate for the April-June quarter: 3-percent. Lazio argued that the economy was still moving along fine, and that the January-March quarter had been revised upward.

    Beckel's reply was curious: "Bush has never grabbed hold of the economy; he's been too focused on foreign affairs and the war." (The last part is a paraphrase from memory.) Beckel was arguing that a healthy economy will not benefit President Bush, as he hasn't done much with it.

    That's as nearly as curious a statement as Kerry's assertion that Bush has no record (see post below). If Beckel's argument is the perception Kerry's team wants to foster, fine. But it's an invention.

  • My wife and I went out this evening, and when we returned, I flipped on the radio. Something called The Michael Savage Show -- a "conservative" radio talk show -- and I listened for a moment. Michael Savage said: "The only way for Bush to get a handle on this is to bring in someone new and dynamic is the V.P. And that person is Colin Powell."

    I didn't hear any more of the show, but his assertion might have been that Kerry now has the incredible momentum and the President has to shake things up. Charlie Cook made a similar argument some weeks ago.

    I'm not going to talk about what should have been done in the past, although I agree with what the President did. I will say that at this point, dumping Vice President Cheney for someone else would be seen as an act of desperation. Because that is exactly what it would be.

    The President is not desperate.

  • The Yankees won a very good game tonight, beating Baltimore, 2-1. Alex Rodriquez evidently hit a home run… that's what they said. Once again, I was unable to listen to the entire game, and this time, I don't have the Democrats to blame.

  • George Gershwin. I'm going American tonight. There's a tendency which I've noticed amongst those who really enjoy this type of music to dismiss American composers to set American composers on a lower tier.

    A friend once joked that the greatest piece of American music ever written was Dvorák's 9th Symphony: From the New World.

    Gershwin was a genius. And he wrote for Americans. While Beethoven wrote primarily for kings and princelings, Gershwin wrote for Americans who wanted to see a show. There is a beauty to a music created for capitalistic reasons that only adds to his merit as a composer.


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