Friday, October 21, 2005
Looks like I'm not getting the Prius
So I've agreed to join my own blogger cabal -- Pajamas Media.
[So what does this mean for your average reader. Wait, screw them, what does this mean for me?!--ed. Not much, really. In a few weeks/months, you'll be redirected from this URL to another one -- but this bookmark will still be valid. There will probably be a few more ads along the right-hand side -- the whole point of this idea is to pool together multiple sites to generate larger traffic for advertisers. That's about it. And me?--ed. You're still on the payroll.]
Here's my profile over at their site. Money quote: "My plan is to retire in three years based on this. I was specifically promised lots of cash and a Toyota Prius." UPDATE: Roger Simon sets me straight on the compensation.
[Hey, wasn't Pajamas Media co-conceived by Charles Johnson of Little Green Footballs?--ed. Why yes, yes it is. I disagree a fair amount with Charles -- but then again, I disagree with David Corn a fair amount too, and he's involved as well. Any good classical liberal would want this kind of disagreement--it would be like one syndicated columnist caring about who else is covered by the syndicate. Besides, I don't think there's going to be a huge overlap in readership. According to this LGF commenter, "sagely and even-handedly pondering all sides of an issue of grave geo-political importance is not what makes an exciting blog." So much for the Prius!--ed.]
Who the hell is Daniel W. Drezner?
A brief introduction, in the form of a Q&A [NOTE: this has been updated and revised from my previous "about me" page from four years ago. Feel free to compare and contrast the two pages to your heart's content!--ed.]:
Q: Who are you?
A: I'm a professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. I've previously taught at the University of Chicago, University of Colorado at Boulder, and Donetsk Technical University in the Republic of Ukraine for Civic Education Project. I've also served as an international economist in the Treasury Department and as a research consultant for the RAND corporation.
I'm the author of All Politics is Global: Explaining International Regulatory Regimes (Princeton University Press, 2007), U.S. Trade Strategy: Free Versus Fair (Council on Foreign Relations Press, 2006), and The Sanctions Paradox: Economic Statecraft and International Relations (Cambridge University Press, 1999). I'm the editor of Locating the Proper Authorities: The Interaction of Domestic and International Institutions (University of Michigan Press, 2003). I've also written a fair number of articles in both policy and scholarly journals -- click here for links to many of them.
I have a B.A. from Williams College, an M.A. in economics and a Ph.D. in political science from Stanford University. I've received fellowships from the German Marshall Fund of the United States, Council on Foreign Relations and Harvard University's Olin Center for Strategic Studies. I was a monthly contributor to The New Republic Online, and have also published essays in Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, the New York Times, Slate, Tech Central Station, and the Wall Street Journal. This weblog has been in existence since September 2002.
Q: What do you know?
A: I can claim some genuine expertise on the utility of economic statecraft, the political economy of globalization, U.S. foreign policy, the Boston Red Sox, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. However, as my wife is fond of pointing out, this narrow range of expertise does not prevent me from discussing with false confidence everything else under the sun.
Q: What's your political affiliation?
A: I'm a small-l libertarian Republican who studies international relations, which means I'm frequently conflicted between my laissez-faire instincts and my clear-eyed recognition that there is no substitute for nation-states in world politics. Domestically, I was an unpaid foreign policy advisor for the Bush-Cheney 2000 campaign (they didn't need the help) -- but then I grudgingly voted for Kerry in 2004. It's safe to say I'm conflicted some of the time. Just keep reading the blog, you'll get a pretty good sense of what I believe.
Q: Why are you wasting valuable hours blogging instead of writing peer-reviewed academic articles?
On the record: Blogging and academic scholarship are like apples and oranges. I love the academic side of my job, i.e., the researching and writing about international relations theory. But I'm also a policy wonk. And since the New York Times op-ed page mysteriously refuses to solicit my views, the blog lets me scratch that itch. [Er, the Times has solicited your views--ed. Oh, sure, once -- and that was only because I said "pretty please." Any time the Times is willing to give me instant access to their op-ed page without Times Select being such a killjoy, I'll give up the blog.]
Off the record: Sure, I was worried about how the blog was perceived when I was untenured. However, I'm pretty confident that the blog hasn't retarded my scholarly output And I've reached the point in my career where I don't need to worry about tenure. So f$%& that s&*^.
Q: What do you mean by wonk? How much of a policy geek are you?
A: I wrote my first op-ed -- about the Reagan Doctrine -- for the Hartford Courant when I was 17 years old. I'm pretty damn geeky.
Q: I want to learn more about international relations in today's world; what should I be reading?
Also be sure as well to check out the journals. The ones intended for a general interest audience include Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, The American Interest, The National Interest, and The Washington Quarterly. On the scholarly side, go check out International Organization, International Security, International Studies Quarterly, and World Politics.
Q: Isn't it pretentious to have your middle initial in the byline for all of your publications?
A: The first time I ever published an article, my mother complained about the absence of my middle initial in the byline. Between looking pretentious and getting Mom off my back, it was an easy call.
[UPDATE: My mother, after reading this, e-mailed to say: "Using your middle initial is not pretentious. It is your name. The W stands for your great grandfather, William Pauls, my mother's dad. He was much loved as you are as well!" So there].
Q: I've perused your blog, and I'm noticing an annoying editor guy pops up on occasion. What's the deal? Are you schizophrenic?
A: This is a tic I shamelessly borrowed from Mickey Kaus. I find it useful as a way of dealing with counterarguments, as well as the occasional humorous aside [So that's all I am to you? An outlet for cheap laughs?--ed. Go bug Mickey for a while.]
Q: I still want to know more.
A: Then you clearly have too much time on your hands. However, feel free to check out the rest of my web site, which includes my academic cv and some more biographical material. Also, go check out my answers to Crescat Sententia's Twenty Questions, my Normblog profile, and my Pajamas Media bio.
That's quite a cabal you have, Mr. President
Former State Department Chief of Staff Lawrence Wilkerson gave quite the talk at the New America Foundation earlier this week. The Washington Post's Dana Milbank and the Financial Times' Ted Alden thought it worth writing about.
What's the big deal about Wilkerson's speech? Well, for the press, it's the latest sign of a conservative crack-up. For foreign policy wonks, it's the accusation that the Bush administration pretty much ignored the 1947 National Security Act:
Wilkerson also points out, however, that there was a stronger pre-war consensus on Iraqi WMD intellgence than many want to believe:
Thursday, October 20, 2005
It's your very last chance to get in the acknowledgments!!
This appears to be the week when career setbacks translate into publishing successes.
A few days ago, Bruce Bartlett was fired by the National Center for Policy Analysis.
Now, Rachel Deahl reports in Publishers Weekly that Doubleday is thrilled:
[Hooray!! This means it's coming out in a few months, right?--ed. How little you know about academic publishing, my notional friend. It means I will be spending the next couple of months to complete one final revision. After I hand it in, it will come out about a year after that. So my goal will be for the book to be released in 2006.]
And you -- yes, you, the not-so-average blog reader -- can help!! If you have a few spare days, feel free to peruse the manuscript. Let me know if you have any constructive criticisms, stylistic suggestions, or detect any typos (there are a bunch strategically sprinkled into the current version). If you're lucky, you too could find yourself mentioned in the acknowledgments in a major university press book!!
[Whoop-dee-frickin'-doo. This is a big deal?--ed. Well, it is for my field. Anyone in the discipline who sees a new book in their field will first check the acknowledgments, index, and bibliography to see if they are mentioned. And anyone who tells you otherwise is not to be trusted.]
Wednesday, October 19, 2005
So explain this to me about Harriet Miers....
The positive trait that appeared most often in early press accounts about Harriet Miers was her meticulous attention to every detail. Say what you will about Miers, all the i's were dotted and all the t's were crossed on her watch.
One could quibble about whether this is the most useful trait in a Supreme Court Justice, but it is certainly a positive trait in its own right -- one that many Americans wish they had in greater stock. And, at this stage of the game, I suspect the Bush administration will take whatever positive memes about Miers it can get.
Which makes this Knight-Ridder story by James Kuhnhenn all the more disturbing:
To be fair to Miers, a lot of the incomplete answers are likely due to Bush's reluctance to do anything that event hints at a waiver of executive privilege.
Still, there's this very odd end of the story:
In NRO, Byron York notes that her supporters have admitted that, "The meetings with the senators are going terribly. On a scale of one to 100, they are in negative territory."
Should the U.S. still have some SOB's?
As Henry Farrell pointed out two months ago, one of the more intriguing ideational coalitions of the past few years has been, "the ever-smushier and less critical lovefest between leftwing opponents of the Iraq war and rightwing realist opponents of same."
I bring this up because, a) it appears that the influence of the neocons has been on the wane in the Bush administration as compared to the realists; and b) Max Boot's Los Angeles Times column on one of our strategically convenient but ideologically awkward allies -- the ex-Soviet republic of Azerbaijan:
One wonders -- if the Bush administration veers towards a more realist direction, will liberals and neoconservatives find common cause on cases like these?
Tuesday, October 18, 2005
Can you feel the Hong Kong buzz?
Last week WTO Director-General Pascal Lamy said that, "the engines [of WTO negotiations] are buzzing" -- mostly because of a U.S. proposal to reform its domestic price supports for agricultural goods.
Lamy has an ambitious timetable in the run-up to the December Hong Kong Ministerial conference:
Well.... the problem is that the U.S. isn't the only country that needs to make concessions.
There's the European Union, for example. Deutsche Welle is not optimistic:
And then there's the rest of the world -- particularly the developing countries. In the Financial Times, Alan Beattie is not optimistic:
Lamy is correct -- his timetable for negotiations is not impossible.
But with this constellation of interests, it's pretty damned improbable.
In my first visit to Souther California, my guide took me to Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills. After gawking at the stores and the price tags, we stumbled into an art gallery that was having quite a function -- lots of guys with slicked-back pony tails, black suits, black shirts, and black ties [Cut them some slack -- this was 1990--ed.]
It turned out that we had stumbled into a retrospective of the artwork of... Sylvester Stallone.
The piece of his I remember the most was "Rocky V." This was a collage of typed manuscript pages on a canvas with gobs of paint splattered everywhere. It was very... three-dimensional.
I dredge this memory out of my brain and inflict it on all of you because of this Associated Press story:
I look forward with bated breath to see the work of art that Stallone will forge out of this screenplay.
Readers are strongly encouraged to suggest an age-appropriate opponent for Stallone's senior boxing flick. With apologies to Fight Club, I'd have to vote for William Shatner.
The dissaffected Republican elites
For many years, Bruce Bartlett has been the epitome of the loyal critic -- someone who has defended the Bush administration on big questions while still highlighting his differences with the administration.
According to the New York Times' Richard Stevenson, Bartlett has joined the ranks of really disgruntled Republicans:
This is the message that is coming from Bush officials, according to Time:
In the end, whether Yglesias (and Bush) are right or not revolves around two really, really big questions:
Monday, October 17, 2005
All we are is dust in the wind
Bertram is likely correct that many of the contributions are ephemeral, but is it really so bad to come up with an idea that is "absorbed into the body of human knowledge"? Isn't that kind of the point?
[But according to Bertram, there won't be much trace of the idea's progenitor--ed. On the one hand, duh. Current writers always interpret older writers in the context of their current epoch. On the other hand, it is precisely this habit in our thinking that then leaves the door open to graduate students eager to engage in their own kind of revisionism -- which can't happen without reading the originator.]
Sunday, October 16, 2005
Open Iraq constitution thread
Comment away on the implications of the Iraqi vote on its constitution.
There's a lot riding on that last paragraph.
Is any country prepared for the avian flu?
As the Bush administration continues to develop its pandemic plan, I'm beginning to wonder if any country is really prepared for a pandemic. The Financial Times reports that the EU isn't prepared for an avian flu pandemic. What's interesting is why:
There are going to be some nasty intra-EU squabbles if a pandemic breaks out anytime soon (which, it should be stressed, is far from certain. Experts are predicting an outbreak by 2020. So, with luck, this will turn out to be like the Y2K problem rather than the 1918 influenza outbreak).
UPDATE: Tyler Cowen makes the case for not violating Roche's patent on Tamiflu.