Wednesday, July 26, 2006
From the home page of the New York Times online:
The good news is that without too much effort you can, believe it or not, create an admirable taco at home.
Of course, by this they mean hi-ho blue state tacos that appeal to "taco afficionados." Who read the New York Times.
I've posted an analysis of the US-Israel-EU3 diplomatic strategy at my blog, and would like some intelligent feedback if you get a chance. I am convinced that the present stall strategy will continue indefinitely.
The coordinated responses, the Israeli suggestion to deploy NATO, the Arab suggestion of an international force -- all of it is purposeful. Simply: changing the issue from an immediate ceasefire to international force deployment creates an opportunity for further delay, and everybody Iran abused at the negotiating table -- and everybody in the region who stands to lose from an Iranian ascendancy -- is playing along.
David Reiff observed in 1999 that international moralism is diplomacy's exoteric language, while the esoteric language of the inside players remains one of Realpolitik. This dichotomy creates pressure on Western governments during times of crisis, but usually the pressure can be released with a symbolic gesture, a nod towards the moralist's demands through rhetoric and posture. But the game that goes on behind the charade and underneath the surface is still based on interest and power.
To mitigate public pressure for a ceasefire, the Administration has played a shrewd game -- embracing it, and at the same time defining it out of immediate possibility. Meanwhile, the issue of an alternative course is deliberately complicated by the bureaucracies and allies involved.
That taco article is just sad. I'm so glad I live in San Diego. You're literally never more than 1/2 mile from a decent 24-hour taco shop, no matter where in the incorporated parts of the county you are.
In fact, there are no less than 8 within a 2 mile radius of my house.
The truth is NYC is one of the best places on the East Coast to get Mexican. Having 16,000+ restaurants helps, but what really adds quality is that it has a lot of Mexicans (duh). There are probably a thousand Mexican restaurants of varying quality and authenticity. A lot are typical East coast crap, but some are the real deal. (Hint: look for Mexican customers)
The real joke is that the NYT would assume their readership hasn't been to the better of these establishments (see hint), but instead wants to follow Mark Bittman's instructions on how to cook tacos.