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The Attorney General:
I was there along with about half of the other Conspirators (and many VC readers) when Attorney General Michael Mukasey collapsed tonight during his speech to the Federalist Society at its annual banquet. As I write this, we still don't know what happened, but we are all thinking of the Attorney General and of course we all wish him a very speedy recovery.
CrimLawStudent (mail):
Alert and in good condition at GW Hospital, thankfully. (WSJ)
11.21.2008 1:17am
Perseus (mail):
I noticed that in the original report, the AP reporters could not resist taking a potshot at Mukasey's predecessor in the very first paragraph, which has since been pushed down to the middle of story:

Bush, a fierce loyalist, ventured outside his circle of friends and Texas associates to tap Mukasey 14 months ago to replace Alberto Gonzales, who had resigned in disgrace. Gonzales, the president's longtime friend and fellow Texan, quit after months of senators' demands for his resignation and investigations that called his credibility into doubt.

Ditto on wishing Attorney General Mukasey a speedy recovery.
11.21.2008 1:42am
Robert Farrell (mail):

Atty. Gen. Michael B. Mukasey was rushed to the hospital Thursday night after collapsing and losing consciousness during a speech on the war on terrorism, a Justice Department official said.



Was he by any chance saying something like this, a la The Meaning of Life?

"And so, in summary, we in the Bush administration have successfully prosecuted the war on terror while respecting Americans' constitutional rights, and may God strike me down were it to be otherwise!"
11.21.2008 2:06am
Dave N (mail):
Robert Farrell,

Your remark proves beyond a shadow of any doubt that you are a vile cretin. You should be ashamed of yourself.
11.21.2008 2:11am
Tony Tutins (mail):
If not a stroke, maybe his carotid arteries are plugged. If so, they can be rodded out thanks to modern medicine.
11.21.2008 2:43am
David Welker (www):
Hopefully the Attorney General recovers soon.
11.21.2008 3:27am
LM (mail):
Robert Farrell,

I don't know if you think that's funny or persuasive, but it's neither. It's disgraceful, and a right wing troll out to undermine left wing legitimacy couldn't have done a better job. Thanks for nothing.
11.21.2008 5:00am
Litigator-London:
While there can be no doubt that Judge Mukasey is right wing and a conservative, I think the perceived wisdom is that he is honest and honourable. He is undoubtedly a dedicated and patriotic public servant: why else would he have accepted the poisoned chalice represented by the AG appointment in the terminal days of a presidency which has been a disaster in so many respects but in none more than respect for the law, human rights and due process?

Whatever the nature of the event, it was apparently cam on precipitated at the moment when Judge Mukasey was about to embark on some prepared remarks on the Administration's "successes" in the fight against terrorism.

This was on the day that Judge Leon had held in the DC District Court that 4 of the 5 Algerian/Bosnian detainees in the Boumediene case be granted their petitions for habeas corpus corpus and, as Scotusblog records added to his formal ruling a request to the Administration:-

The judge, in an unusual added comment, suggested to senior government leaders that they forgo an appeal of his ruling on freeing the five prisoners. While conceding that the government had a right to appeal that part of his ruling, Leon commented that he, too, had "a right to appeal" to leaders of the Justice Department, Central Intelligence Agency and other intelligence agencies, and his plea was that they look at the evidence regarding the five he was ordering released. "Seven years of waiting for our legal system to give them an answer to their legal question is enough," he commented.

Judge Mukasey can probably read the writing on the judicial wall as well as, if not better than, most. He must be aware that the Administration's whole unlawful strategy in relation to detainees is on the verge of collapse and exposure.

In those circumstances, perhaps the text of his prepared remarks, stuck in his throat and precipitated the medical accident. A truly honest man often finds it very difficult to lie against his nature and principles.

One must wish him a speedy recovery.
11.21.2008 5:34am
Litigator-London:
Correction: 5 0f 6 to be released, not 4 of 5.

Addendum: This is perhaps going also to make it rather difficult not to respond to requests for judicial co-operation in the ongoing criminal proceedings in Bosnia against those who participated in the unlawful removal of the detainees from that state in defiance of a ruling of Bosnia's Supreme Court.
11.21.2008 5:39am
Lord of Appeal in Ordinary:
Wow. Litigator-London, like Farrell, you truly are a piece of work.
11.21.2008 7:13am
devil's advocate (mail):
and on a lighter note,

I was hoping for a thread about one of the upcoming presentations by conspirators at the Fed-soc convention today (or a retrospective by Adler on his work yesterday) to append this note to. I will try to make it polite by characterizing it as a mood lifting post rather than a hijack although subsequent commentators will no doubt be the judges.

I missed the banquet last night and was sorry to hear the reports of Mukasey's collapsem but the show must go on. For any who volokher's who are actually here in DC, I'm headed to the St. Regis at K. and 16th for an open breakfast with the French delegatio...

and am inviting any federalist (or for that matter non-federalist) bailout skeptics to our
Bailout and Beer
no-host reception at the:
Sign of the Whale Pub
after the conference today:
Friday, Nov 21st, 6:30-8:30.
1825 M St., NW between Conn. and 19th

about a block from the Mayflower where the panels are taking place.

We'll be looking for antidotes for a $700 billion headache - which brings beer to mind rather quickly.

Also note that we will not expect lightening to strike twice but still wish good health to the conspirators on the playbill today. and most especially for swift recovery for the Attorney General.

Brian
11.21.2008 7:27am
Gary McGath (www):
I see no reason to wish a Bush stooge well simply because he's a government official.
11.21.2008 7:34am
taney71:
Stay classy Gary!
11.21.2008 7:44am
OrinKerr:
Gary McGath,

I am sorry you are having trouble seeing common decency. Maybe it will become visible to you soon.
11.21.2008 7:45am
Tom Tildrum:
It's fascinating to me how people like Litigator-London, so ostentatiously concerned with human rights, can be so devoid of human compassion.
11.21.2008 7:50am
Litigator - Madrid (mail):
Well said, Tom.
11.21.2008 8:01am
dcuser (mail):
Mukasey's collapse was distressing news to those throughout the political spectrum. We can only hope for a quick recovery.
11.21.2008 8:04am
AnonLawStudent:
Mukasey's speech focused on the need to maintain the rule of law as based on text, precedent, and history, while rejecting (and noting the dangers of) treatment of policy disputes as legal disputes. I'm guessing that the irony of the comments at 206AM, 534AM, and 734AM is lost on their authors.

A speedy recovery to General Mukasey.
11.21.2008 8:32am
Lord of Appeal in Ordinary:
Tom, this aptly describes the phenomenon.
11.21.2008 8:37am
AntonK (mail):
It is worth noting that comments such as those by Gary McGath, et al, represent the great bulk of, and not an aberration of, thinking on the Left.
11.21.2008 8:51am
Frog Leg (mail):
It is worth noting that comments such as those by AntonK represent the type of ridiculously sweeping generalizations made by the great bulk of, and not an aberration of, thinking by idiots.
11.21.2008 8:57am
Sarcastro (www):
Nice, Frog Leg I was speechless at this thread.

Best wishes for Mukasey's recovery.
11.21.2008 9:09am
Anderson (mail):
Good heavens, the poor man. God knows what this job has done to him. Best wishes for his full recovery.
11.21.2008 9:15am
Litigator-London:
This lecture by the former Master of the Rolls and former Lord Chief Justice of England who has just stepped down from the post of Senior Lord of Appeal in Ordinary The Rt Hon Lord Bingham of Cornhill KG delivered the Institute's Annual Grotius Lecture on 'The Rule of Law in the International Order' also focused on athe need to maintain the rule of law:-

He used as an example the 'serious violation of international law' by the United States, the United Kingdom and others in invading Iraq in 2003, which, he said, despite the genuine beliefs of many of those involved that it was lawful, nevertheless the effect was to 'undermine the foundation on which the post-1945 consensus had been constructed'. Lord Bingham commented that 'however attractive it might be for a single state to be free of all the legal constraints that bind all other states, they are unlikely to tolerate such a situation for very long and in the meantime the solo state would lose the benefits and protections that international agreement can confer. The rule of the jungle is no more tolerable in a big jungle'.

Lord Bingham also highlighted the 'unilateral decisions of the US Government that the Geneva Conventions did not apply to the detention conditions in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, or to trial of Al-Qa'ida or Taliban prisoners by military commissions' as being contrary to the rule of law and stated that 'the moment that a State treats the rules of international law as binding on others but not on itself, the compact on which the law rests is broken'. He called for greater use of the International Court of Justice in matters connected to the UN Charter and noted the debate on the legality of the Iraq war has 'enhanced the importance of international law in the public mind'.


And to Tom Tildrum and Litigator Madrid et al. In my remarks I was careful to say that I understand Judge Macasey to be honest, honourable and a fine public servant and that I wish him well. In other words, ladies and gentlemen, I consider him to be in a different category to his immediate predecessors and to some of those on the extreme right who post on his blog in favor of denying to others the rights they would wish to enjoy themselves.
11.21.2008 9:16am
Anderson (mail):
Btw, anyone remember when you could expect to read about things like 4 Gitmo detainees' ordered release at Balkinization? Those were the days, eh?

Maybe Marty Lederman is so busy filling out the Obama team's questionnaire, he doesn't have time to blog.
11.21.2008 9:17am
Anderson (mail):
Josh Marshall relays an eyewitness report. What follows is from TPM, w/ my boldface added (so I don't italicize the whole thing &reduce readability):
____

Attorney General Mukasey was roughly twenty minutes into a speech defending the administration's torture policies and particularly arguing against prosecutions of people who made decisions in the aftermath of 9/11 (essentially arguing against what he believed amounted to the criminalization of policy differences).

Some seven or eight minutes prior to the incident a heckler start shouting, calling Mukasey a "tyrant." But the AG seemed unfazed by this; and members of the audience shouted the heckler down.

The eyewitness tells me that Mukasey seemed particularly in earnest about the argument he was making. And when he first began to falter it appeared he was merely choking up. Soon, what at first appeared to be choking up blended into slurred words. Twenty to thirty seconds later he collapsed, his fall broken by a nearby FBI agent.

The room fell silent. After a moment there were shouts from the table where Mukasey's wife was sitting, calling to turn down the stage lights. A woman in an evening gown, presumably a doctor, ran up to the stage and the FBI agents hovering over Mukasey allowed her to attend to him.

The eyewitness told me that Mukasey collapsed at approximinately 10:06 and was taken off on a stretcher at approximately 10:33.

The one additional detail is that this eyewitness says that the medical personnel attending to Mukasey were talking to him for at least part of that period, at one point asking him "can you wiggle your toes." In other words, it appears that Mukasey did regain consciousness to at least some degree before being taken to the hospital.

As emergency personnel were attending to Mukasey, a group of Republican luminaries, including former Attorney General Ashcroft and his wife, created a cordon between Mukasey and the audience to create some degree of privacy.

After Mukasey was taken away the audience was led in a prayer for Mukasey by former Congressman David McIntosh (R-IN).
11.21.2008 9:21am
Michael B (mail):
Ah yes, the poisoned "chalice" that is the Left: viperous, venomous and vicious, the facile arrogations, the glib certitudes, the vacuous triumphalism, the sneers, the schadenfreude, the malice. Predictable, all of it, and the perfect occasion for it.

Salvation is nigh, a new age has dawned. Change!
11.21.2008 9:26am
Anderson (mail):
Ah yes, the poisoned "chalice" that is the Left: viperous, venomous and vicious, the facile arrogations, the glib certitudes, the vacuous triumphalism, the sneers, the schadenfreude, the malice.

Yes, the utter absence of those qualities on the Right has led me to change parties and become a Republican. I'm so glad to be joining the party of virtue. Which iniquitous country are we to invade next?
11.21.2008 9:28am
wm13:
London-Litigator, it's a clever rhetorical tactic, of which Lord Bingham and you are evidently fond, to call your own political views "The Law," thereby wrapping yourself in the cloak of sovereign power and implying that there is something illegal about your political opponents. But it works better on audiences less sophisticated than this one.
11.21.2008 9:29am
Lord of Appeal in Ordinary:
Yes, Litigator-London, I knew you would very predictably bring up Lord Bingham's speech, as if it had anything to do with Mukasey's collapse. And true to form, you do. Using Mukasey's collapse to make a political point -- as you did -- is behaviorally cretinous. But you just can't stop yourself. Shame.
11.21.2008 9:37am
Extraneus (mail):
There sure are some ugly folks on the left. I suppose certain of their blogs will have to disable comments today, like when Cheif Justice Roberts had a seizure or when Vice President Cheney had a heart procedure. I wonder what they'd do to their political opponents if they could get away with it.
11.21.2008 9:48am
hawkins:

There sure are some ugly folks on the left.


Of course there are! There are many ugly humans - right, left, gay, straight, christian, jewish, you name it.
11.21.2008 10:21am
Oren:
Very uncouth of the AP. Best wishes to the AG.
11.21.2008 10:31am
krs:
News reports this morning are saying he's ok and that it was probably just a "fainting spell" (CNN's words) rather than a stroke or a heart attack. Good news.
11.21.2008 10:31am
luagha:
It wounds much like what happened to Chief Justice John Roberts - not enough sleep, too much hard work, and some people can push themselves into a small epileptic seizure.
11.21.2008 10:42am
George Smith:
Some posters apparently thought this was the HuffPo. We should wish ANYBODY who suffers an episode such as this a speedy and full recovery.
11.21.2008 10:42am
Litigator-London:
Wm13:-
I suggest that before remarking on Lord Bingham's qualities you first read his CV on Wikipedia and this assessment in the Times Lord Bingham of Cornhill which speak to his scholarship and judicial competence. You could also do worse than read some of his judgments.

Michael B wrote about the the poisoned "chalice" that is the Left. I would regard myself as being on the centre of UK politics - which probably qualifies for your definition of "the left", but in terms of "poisoned chalices", I suggest that you might to well to consider (i) the Reagan Administration's chalice of the "mujahidden" who after brain washing morphed into Al Quaida and other terrorist groups such as the GSPC in Algeria who have incidentaly killed far more people in the Muslim world than they did on 9-11, (ii) the Bush 2 Administration's chalice of the "legal black holes" of Guantamamo (and elsewhere), not forgetting (iii) the political appointments of the same Administrations to the Bench and the DoJ which have resulted in an over deferential approach to the problems created by the illegalities which are now going to be the inheritance of the next Administration.

I happen to think that the incoming Administration will have its hands full with putting right what has gone wrong over the last 8 years and will be disinclined to go for any immediate prosecutions - certainly not before there has been a full investigation.

But if the argument Judge Mukasey intended to make was to the effect that to permit torture and the inhuman and degrading treatment of detainees was merely a "policy difference", I would have to dissent.

But were wrongdoing established by a proper bipartisan enquiry if possible presided over by a distinguished legal figure, my preference would be impeachment rather than prosecution, because if there were those who were advised or counselled the use of torture or inhuman or degrading treatment, the appropriate consequence would be that they should be debarred from the future possibility of holding office - mere imprisonment would not be enough. But enquiry first, consequences, if any, afterwards.
11.21.2008 11:12am
MisterBigTop:
Litigator-London, your original comment would disgust any decent human being.

Prayers for the Attorney General.
11.21.2008 11:43am
Swede:
Yes, the utter absence of those qualities on the Right has led me to change parties and become a Republican. I'm so glad to be joining the party of virtue. Which iniquitous country are we to invade next?

Pakistan.

If you believe Senator Changey-Hope.
11.21.2008 11:47am
Robert Farrell (mail):

News reports this morning are saying he's ok and that it was probably just a "fainting spell" (CNN's words) rather than a stroke or a heart attack. Good news.


Doubtful, if he was actually slurring his words on the scene. Sounds more like a TIA. The good news is that there are no permanent sequalae from the TIA itself; the bad news is that it is a sentinel phenomenon, and a good portion of those that have them go on to have full-blown strokes.

I'd suggest those with no sense of humor about the AG's plight bear several things in mind:

1. On any given day on this blog, one can find lighthearted and sometimes mocking discussions of policies programs that have or could cost thousands of people their livelihoods, their freedom or their lives. You may want to ask yourself what it is about this incident that makes it so serious -- is it that a fellow lawyer is so afflicted?

2. If the campaign of John McCain taught us one thing, it's that if you want your libels to find purchase, they need to be consistent. The right prides itself on being ruthless and pitiless, and derides the left as naive and weak. If you then try to define the left as venomous and cruel, you just come off as confused.

3. Take from someone who works in a hospital and sees a lot of sick, sometimes dying people; a sense of humor about sickness and accidents in no way precludes compassion. Lighten up!
11.21.2008 11:56am
Litigator-London:
Mister Big Top:

So you think it would disgust any human being to see Judge Mukasey described as: "right wing and a conservative"..."honest and honourable"..."undoubtedly a dedicated and patriotic public servant"..."a truly honest man".

Which precisely of those epithets do you think would disgust any human being and pray explain why.
11.21.2008 12:01pm
Litigator - Madrid (mail):
Litigator - London:

Is he your cousin or something? His CV on Wikipedia: yeah, there's a reason to agree with him about the war on Iraq. I can show you a Reagan's CV, thoughts on Star Wars?

About that CV on Wikipedia - colo[u]r me unimpressed. Wow, two sons and Master of the Rolls. Wonder how he has time to put that physical feather in his hat when he's not, as wm13 says, "call[ing his] own political views "The Law," thereby wrapping [him]self in the cloak of sovereign power and implying that there is something illegal about [his] political opponents" in order to get add more feathers to his hat.

Then again, "he was personally responsible for adding "and Wales" to the . . . title [Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales]". Guess that war was against international law after all.
11.21.2008 12:04pm
Litigator - Madrid (mail):
Robert Farrell:


The right prides itself on being ruthless and pitiless, and derides the left as naive and weak.


I don't think the right "prides" itself on that. Citations? I know my friends on the right don't pride themselves on that. I think they would say that they pride themselves on personal responsibility. Not sure if you think that's synonymous. I think my friends on the right would say that the left believes in collective responsibility (which, in my opinion, doesn't optimize Kaldor-Hicks efficiency in social welfare).
11.21.2008 12:15pm
Dilan Esper (mail) (www):
Will Bush be sending his White House Counsel over to Mukasey's hospital room to obtain an emergency reversal of restrictions on surveillance programs?
11.21.2008 12:30pm
Anderson (mail):
I think they would say that they pride themselves on personal responsibility.

Which Mr. Mukasey was arguing against last night.
11.21.2008 12:32pm
Anderson (mail):
Will Bush be sending his White House Counsel over to Mukasey's hospital room to obtain an emergency reversal of restrictions on surveillance programs?

No, because Mukasey didn't hand things over to his deputy: once bitten, twice shy.

Bush AG is starting to look like Spinal Tap drummer, though.
11.21.2008 12:35pm
Cornellian (mail):
(and noting the dangers of) treatment of policy disputes as legal disputes.

I'd like to hear him talk about the dangers of treating legal disputes as policy disputes.
11.21.2008 1:26pm
KeithK (mail):

I'd suggest those with no sense of humor about the AG's plight bear several things in mind:


Robert, much of humor comes in the timing. If we all knew that Mukasey was OK and was unlikely to have negative consequences of the event then I can see your comment being funny. It's easy to laugh about things that didn't happen. When you wrote it Mukasey's health seemed very much in the air. Poor timing.


Take from someone who works in a hospital and sees a lot of sick, sometimes dying people; a sense of humor about sickness and accidents in no way precludes compassion. Lighten up!


I agree that people generally should lighten up. Medical professionals may often use humor as a defense mechanism against all the crap they se around them (and rightly so) but it can be upsetting to people outside of the field.
11.21.2008 1:34pm
MarkField (mail):

Will Bush be sending his White House Counsel over to Mukasey's hospital room to obtain an emergency reversal of restrictions on surveillance programs?


Restrictions? There are restrictions now?
11.21.2008 1:34pm
Extraneus (mail):
Wow, I haven't been here in a while, but I see folks are still pretty exercized over surveillance and privacy issues. I imagine you all must have been absolutely livid over the State of Ohio's accessing and leaking a private citizen's personal records.
11.21.2008 1:41pm
Robert Farrell (mail):

I agree that people generally should lighten up. Medical professionals may often use humor as a defense mechanism against all the crap they se around them (and rightly so) but it can be upsetting to people outside of the field.


Fair point. I will go a fair way out of my way for a sharp turn of phrase, and that's not to everyone's taste. It's much easier, however, as well as less hypocritical, to shrug and move your eyes down the page rather than vomit up torrents of abuse ("vile cretin," "behaviorally cretinous," "ugly," "viperous, venomous and vicious," "facile arrogations", "vacuous triumphalism," "malice.")

People die and worms devour them, but making light of the situation with a Monty Python reference is not the same as venting one's spleen -- for that, look to the responses.
11.21.2008 1:46pm
Michael B (mail):
Right, R. Farrell, your virtue is manifest in your "lack of hypocrisy." An oft used rationale. Applaud yourself, but only a more egegious use of that same rationale would applaud Manson for a lack of hypocrisy as well.

Anderson, among other things, it seems you failed to appreciate the rich irony in the context of: "Salvation is nigh, a new age has dawned. Change!" (And I doubt you can substantiate your equivocation via a link to a comment at a VC thread.)

As to which country to invade, as you're no doubt aware it wasn't iniquity per se, it was the malevolence along with the prospects for malevolence in the near and long-term future that made Iraq a sound prospect for invasion and, as such, a beachhead to help forge long-term social, political, cultural, regional and inter-national change. That would reflect real, substantive and - yes - costly change, not "change" used as a cheapjack, non-substantive political slogan. E.g., Iraq presently, a photo montage only and a work in progress, but reflective of prospects for that more substantive change along long-term horizons.
11.21.2008 3:28pm
MarkField (mail):

Wow, I haven't been here in a while, but I see folks are still pretty exercized over surveillance and privacy issues. I imagine you all must have been absolutely livid over the State of Ohio's accessing and leaking a private citizen's personal records.


Instead of imagining, you could, you know, look it up.
11.21.2008 3:35pm
Anderson (mail):
along with the prospects for malevolence in the near and long-term future

Ah so. Well, we haven't managed to corner the malevolence market in Iraq -- our competition are no slackers! -- but we have bought into a sizable chunk of the malevolence action. GO USA! GO USA!
11.21.2008 4:12pm
cgb:

It's fascinating to me how people like Litigator-London, so ostentatiously concerned with human rights, can be so devoid of human compassion.


Too many have loved humanity, but hated people.
11.21.2008 4:55pm
LM (mail):
Robert Farrell,

In addition to the reasons Keith K mentioned, your joke was unwelcome because you delivered it to an audience you have no reason to believe trusts your intentions. Familiarity and trust can license all sorts of otherwise objectionable comments. I doubt you and your co-workers would joke about a dying patient to that patient's wife (at least if you didn't know her), even though she might well make such jokes to her own family.

Here, where you have no history to suggest your intentions toward Mukasey would be benevolent, your joke defaults to presumptively antagonistic. And under the circumstances antagonism is extremely offensive. That there are, predictably, partisan jerks who try to associate your behavior with your (and my) ideology doesn't excuse it.
11.21.2008 5:57pm
KeithK (mail):

Fair point. I will go a fair way out of my way for a sharp turn of phrase, and that's not to everyone's taste. It's much easier, however, as well as less hypocritical, to shrug and move your eyes down the page rather than vomit up torrents of abuse


Let's use Eugene's dinner party analogy for comments. If you'd made that joke at a dinner party about a mutual acquaintance who wasn't out of the woods you might get some sharp looks from folks around the table. The host might say "that wasn't very appropriate" and you'd shrug and say "sorry" and life would go on. No one would vent their spleen at you or otherwise toss vile abuse your way.

It's really a good analogy for everyone here to try to keep in mind.

(For the record, I thought the MP reference was pretty funny but my sense of humor probably isn't that far off of yours. But it's all about timing and knowing your audience.)
11.21.2008 8:13pm
neurodoc:
If not a stroke, maybe his carotid arteries are plugged.
No for various reasons, the first of them being that a stroke (cerebrovascular accident) would be in no way less likely in the face of carotid artery stenosis ("plugged") than in the absence thereof. Also, fairly abrupt loss of consciousness, as Mukasey experienced, would point to a problem with the posterior circulation to the brain (vertebrobasilar) rather than the anterior circulation (carotids), or more likely a "central" (fall in cardiac output to the brain) mechanism (e.g., an arrhythmia, vasovagal episode, etc.)
...not enough sleep, too much hard work, and some people can push themselves into a small epileptic seizure
Not if they are not already epileptics.
11.22.2008 10:35am
neurodoc:
:...consider (i) the Reagan Administration's chalice of the "mujahidden" who after brain washing morphed into Al Quaida and other terrorist groups such as the GSPC in Algeria who have incidentaly killed far more people in the Muslim world than they did on 9-11...
Once again, Litigator-London makes his appearance to contend that the Islamic world is not so much responsible for the rise of radical Islam, it is the West, most especially the United States, unnamed "neoconservatives" the ones most to blame for Islamic terrorists. (He previously intimated that Islam did not countenance terrorism of the sort the Islamists practiced, hence the Islamic world could disclaim responsibility for them.) I guess but for Ronald Reagan there would be no Islamic Brotherhood (oops, they were around before Reagan) and the Muslims of Afghanistan would be a happy lot today under Soviet rule.

[re Mukasey...I know nothing of the particulars of his case other than that it was reported yesterday that he was well again, which would mean he didn't experience a "stroke," and more likely had a simple faint, which could have come about in various ways. Years ago, the Russian Foreign Minister Gromyko was holding forth from the podium before the UN General Assembly when something very similar happened, and it was all there to be seen on the evening news with John Chancellor that night. Neurology in the public eye!]
11.22.2008 10:48am
neurodoc:
Doubtful, if he was actually slurring his words on the scene. Sounds more like a TIA. The good news is that there are no permanent sequalae from the TIA itself; the bad news is that it is a sentinel phenomenon, and a good portion of those that have them go on to have full-blown strokes.
Robert Farrell is as wrong on neurologic matters as he is on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
11.22.2008 10:53am
Michael B (mail):
"Well, we haven't managed to corner the malevolence market in Iraq -- our competition are no slackers! -- but we have bought into a sizable chunk of the malevolence action. GO USA! GO USA!" Anderson

And if a strawman and a sneer combined to form a sound argument, you'd have made a point.
11.22.2008 4:16pm
Colin (mail):
Michel B on November 21:

Ah yes, the poisoned "chalice" that is the Left: viperous, venomous and vicious, the facile arrogations, the glib certitudes, the vacuous triumphalism, the sneers, the schadenfreude, the malice.

Michael B on November 22:

And if a strawman and a sneer combined to form a sound argument, you'd have made a point.

Your bilious, preening, and cranky comments may be my favorite part of the VC. I love it even more when put on these delightful displays of a total lack of self-awareness.
11.23.2008 7:25pm
Michael B (mail):
As to self-awareness, that's a mirror you're staring into, Colin. That you can't handle an accurate description is no surprise.
11.25.2008 1:37pm