A TWN reader just directed my attention to a very clever roster of New Year’s resolution wishes that ran as the lead editorial in today’s Los Angeles Times.
Let me share just a few of the many items that the LA Times editorial writers would like to see in 2005:
** We wish President Bush would fire Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld for his disastrous lack of judgment throughout the 18-month Iraq occupation. But we’ll settle for more troops, more armor and an exit plan.
** While we are on the subject of the Bush Cabinet, we wish Condoleezza Rice would get her wish to run the National Football League soon and decide to leave the State Department. Doesn’t Commissioner Paul Tagliabue want to spend more time with his family? And by the way, Ms. Rice, L.A. needs a new team.
** In the Middle East, we wish that Ariel Sharon’s plan to dismantle settlements in Gaza would proceed on schedule and that it would lead to better ties with a new Palestinian leadership.
** We wish for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to attack the gerrymandering of electoral districts that have deprived Californians of competitive elections. He should rally the public against “balloting girlie men” who want to keep districts safe for their parties.
** Speaking of global poverty, we wish the World Trade Organization would finally wrap up its current round of trade talks with an agreement by rich countries, starting with the United States, to give up their outrageously unfair farm subsidies that hurt farmers in the developing world.
** We wish members of Congress would pick up a copy of the Rocky Mountain Institute’s “Winning the Oil Endgame: Innovation for Profits, Jobs and Security” (available at http://www.oilendgame.org ) and use it as the model for a long-term national energy policy. We’d settle for an energy bill that doesn’t promise to subsidize a Hooters restaurant in Shreveport, LA.
** We wish all Supreme Court justices, eight of whom are 65 or older, at least four more years of health and a desire to show up for work.
** We wish Bill Clinton would take over the Democratic National Committee. We’re not ready to settle for Hillary as a presumptive presidential candidate.
** We wish the courts would strike down all further attempts to introduce creationism and “intelligent design” as part of the curriculum in public schools. We’ll settle for nothing less.
The list includes a lot of other items, some very funny. I have to admit I like the LA Times editors’ “wishful thinking.”
I have enjoyed getting the Los Angeles Times national edition in Washington and am disappointed that the paper is pulling the plug on national distribution.
The paper tried this a few years ago, when I worked in the Senate, and I called then Los Angeles Times Chief Editor Shelby Coffey and former Chairman & CEO Robert Erburu groveling and begging them to keep distributing the LA Times in Washington. I don’t know if I had any influence, but a couple of days after my talks with Erburu and Coffey, the LA Times reversed its decision.
But this time, I think it’s final.
Nonetheless, to the editorial writers at the Times, great editorial today.
— Steve Clemons