Dispatches > The Buzz

Ups & Downs of the Week

Issue: "AIDS: Africa's affliction," Sept. 9, 2000

OPINION OF MARRIAGE: A new poll shows that nearly two out of three Americans say that strengthening families is more important than increasing job opportunities; nearly four of five say that strengthening families is more important than creating a cleaner environment. The Wirthlin poll, released on Aug. 30 by the Alliance for Marriage, also showed nearly four in five saying that counseling should be required for married couples with children who are seeking a divorce. POLITICAL PUN(DITRY): The Libertarian Party may never win a national election, but spokesman George Getz knows how to write a winning press release. Commenting on a proposed regulation by the Department of Agriculture to change the federally acceptable size of holes in Swiss cheese, Mr. Getz sliced and cubed: the "Monterey Jack-booted" D.C. bureaucracy is an "out-of-control muenster"; the federal government is "up to, well, no gouda"; "something smells here, and it isn't the Limburger"; "Americans are getting feta up with this kind of meddling"; "leave Americans' provolone alone." RELIGIOUS EXPRESSION IN POLITICS: The Anti-Defamation League, which properly slaps down public anti-Semitism, tried last week to slap down public expressions of faith by the nation's first Orthodox Jewish vice presidential candidate. Sen. Joseph Lieberman said in Detroit that his candidacy as an Orthodox Jew would reinstate "a place for faith in America's public life." Tone it down, Joe, said the ADL's Howard Berkowitz and Abe Foxman: "Language such as this risks alienating the American people." The Gore campaign-which saw to it that Mr. Lieberman changed his positions on school vouchers, affirmative action, and Social Security privatization-signaled it would let Mr. Lieberman speak his mind in this case.

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