Sunday, April 15, 2007

Another Daily Dose

Cuba is sui generis in U.S. foreign policy. Even as we negotiate with North Korea and seek channels to Syria and Iran, we continue to snub this little socialist island in ways both big (no trade) and petty (no travel). This obstinate ostracism has failed, which is why Congressmen Flake and Rangel have proposed legislation repealing the travel ban and encouraging people-to-people and academic exchanges, family visits, and religious and humanitarian programs. Such incremental reform will surely promote democratization without the 82nd airborne.

Reporting from his home base in Iowa, David Yepsen does his best Dana Milbank in reporting-by-quoting a Republican fundraising dinner last night in Des Moines. Nine of the party's presidential candidates showed up to give speeches to a crowd of 1,000 activists in what was one of the largest gatherings of GOP candidates so far in the campaign.

Two days before before his much-anticipated testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, and after Newsweek reported that his murder boards were disastrous, Alberto Gonzales takes to the op-ed page of the Washington Post. Not only is this good strategy—publicizing your side of the story is a first principle in crisis communications—but the op-ed is also newsworthy because it announces the formation of a DOJ investigation.

If, for some inexcusable reason, you've never seen the Sopranos, this NYT article provides an overview, sans spoilers.