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On The Eve Of The First Debate

By Jason Kettinger | Oct 03, 2012 at 10:45 AM

Firstly, don't believe the polls. President Obama is not leading, or building a lead, or any such thing. He's in a fight for his political life, and he knows it. It has never been obvious that an incumbent president is going down, and it won't be all that obvious if it happens this time. I doubt Clinton's people knew they were going to win in 1992 until they did. Oh, sure, they believed they had a shot. And you have to have a ludicrous amount of confidence to be a candidate. But let's get one thing straight: it will never be an easy thing to beat a sitting president, and I've never, ever, seen an incumbent behind in most polls in the summer, even when they lose.

Federer Asks If We’ve Forgotten Kinshasa, 1974

By Jason Kettinger | Sep 04, 2012 at 10:25 AM

I'd like my crow steak medium-rare, Roger. The greatest tennis player of all time showed us why when he played at Wimbledon. Quite frankly, Andy Murray never really had a chance. And when he did, he was the one who cracked. Federer had an edginess about him; he dared Murray to play the match of his life, the match of the tournament, really, betting that he couldn't do it. And he was right.

The View from Mudsock Heights: The More Political Scandal Changes, the More It Stays the Same

By Dennis Powell | Jul 17, 2012 at 11:12 PM

Time passes so quickly. I’ve had chance once again in recent weeks to be startled by that fact, as I watched history repeat itself and noticed the number of people who weren’t born when it happened the first time.

The View from Mudsock Heights: The Exciting New Flying Car -- Invented in the 1950's

By Dennis Powell | Jul 07, 2012 at 10:56 AM

Persons of sufficient age will remember how, 50 or so years ago, we looked forward with excitement to a truly remarkable future. There were from time to time world’s fairs which demonstrated how things would soon be. We couldn’t wait to get there.

Boom and Bust

By Timothy Butler | Jul 04, 2012 at 11:32 PM

The night is filled with the pop-pop-pop and occasional, ever satisfying thud of fireworks. For someone who has spent every Fourth of July with a punk in his hand since he was old enough to shoot off fireworks, those sounds seem a bit out of place tonight. None of them were coming from my fireworks.

Do We Prefer War Over Peace?

By Jason Kettinger | Jun 16, 2012 at 3:53 PM

I want to start by saying that I know, respect, and love probably dozens of military service personnel. No one ought to doubt, on any side, that they see and deal with horrific situations that most of us can’t even guess, much less cope with. Courage is both tested and proved in their lives and stories over and over. But—and we’re quite good at saying the opposite—I don’t believe that bravery translates into policy. Frankly, I resent the suggestion that to urge a massive change in policy denigrates them.

The View from Mudsock Heights: It’s a Delicious Cereal! No, It’s a Packaging Material!

By Dennis Powell | Jun 03, 2012 at 12:06 AM

Have you ever stopped to watch ”” really watch ”” cereal commercials on television? My favorites are those aimed at children. The punchline is always “part of this complete breakfast,” which is accompanied by a picture of a breakfast setting that would be no less complete if the cereal disappeared entirely. The cut up fruit and the eggs and bacon and toast and glass of milk do not really need little orbs of puffed sugar with a crunchy sugar coating to fulfill their nutritional aspirations.

It’s A Different Kind Of Window, But It’s Still Closing

By Jason Kettinger | May 28, 2012 at 11:57 PM

By now, regular readers of my sports columns here know my schtick: I say something provocative, make a prediction about an upcoming contest that is completely, utterly wrong in retrospect—thank you Patriots, Steelers, and Miguel Cotto for nothing—and we talk about the thing behind the thing.

The View from Mudsock Heights: Once Upon a Time There were Libraries...

By Dennis Powell | May 16, 2012 at 12:36 AM

The sun rose gloriously over the hill. A few wisps of fog floated down by the creek and there was just the tiniest bit of frost on the tulips. What a good day, I thought, to consider Google. I don't know for certain that Google is now evil, but I bet that if it isn't it soon will be. No one has ever survived possession of that much power without slipping over to the dark side.

The Summitt of the Game

By Jason Kettinger | Apr 30, 2012 at 10:02 PM

Sports and sports journalism are replete with overwrought praise, military imagery, and hero worship. I get that. I’m a theologian; when the excesses of this sort of thing get really out of hand, few feel worse about it than me. But I’ll take the risk now, and I won’t dare try to be objective. Pat Summitt is the reason women’s college basketball matters, and why it matters to me.

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