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1. First off, I’m very glad to learn about the funny NORWOOD. Thanks, Carl. That reminds me that the chair of the politics and literature section of the American Politcial Sciece Association really wants to have a show on TRUE GRIT next year. Any volunteers?

2. I saw a little of the Republican debate. The members of the audience were exceedingly well dressed. Wofford is a classy college. The performances were generally okay, as Pete says. But I can’t help but think that none of the men or woman on the stage will be the nominee. So I really have nothing to say about the race for the nomination, because something is goin’ on that eerily unprecedented.

3. Well, I’m saying Newt couldn’t possibly get it, but: Eery parallel to 2008. The has-been McCain is running an incompetent campaign is about ready to drop out. Then the other possibilities just don’t catch on and he gets the nmination by default. Then he runs another incompetent campaign in the general election and gets trounced. Gingrich and McCain have the same amount of executive experience. Gingrich, though, hasn’t had a real job in over a decade.

4. Don’t forget the big conference at Berry College this Thursday and Friday on the public policy dimension of being stuck with virtue—featuring Ben Hippen, Paul McHugh, Jim Capretta, and Jean Elshtain. More information at

5. We’re also having a debate on December 1 between Jay Cost and Sean Trende (the hot guys on the election blogs and such) on whether or not the present system of nominating presidential candidates is nuts. A system that decimates or discourages every plausible candidate before anyone even votes can’t be good.

6. Here’s my second post on the controversy on which Dr. Hippen is the leading expert: organ markets. (The link thing ain’t working for me tonight.)

7. My apologies to Pete for not putting the finishing touches on the manifesto yet.

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