Tuesday, April 13, 2004

SCALIA'S EMPTY APOLOGY. Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia is very, very sorry, and those to whom he has apologized seem very, very pleased. But what everyone is very, very missing is that he didn't apologize for anything he did. Rather, he apologized for the actions of a deputy marshal, Melanie Rube, who confiscated a tape from one reporter and a digital recorder from another during a speech by Scalia at a Mississippi high school last week.

Scalia's letter to the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press is online here (PDF file). Check out these excerpts:

You are correct that the action was not taken at my direction; I was as upset as you were. I have written to the reporters involved, extending my apology and undertaking to revise my policy so as to permit recording for use of the print media.


With regard to your further suggestion that I direct security personnel not to confiscate recordings - presumably even those made in violation of clearly announced rules: Security personnel, both those of the institutions at which I speak, and the United States Marshals, do not operate at my direction, but I shall certainly express that as my preference.

Can you figure out what Scalia is apologizing for? I can't. And how would you like to be Melanie Rube today? She may have been out of line, but don't you think she was scared to death about what would happen to her when she realized two reporters were violating Scalia's no-record policy? Why doesn't Scalia apologize to her for putting her in an impossible situation?

Talk about a meaningless apology.

DON'T THINK TWICE, IT'S TOO WEIRD. I had assumed that Bob Dylan's appearance in a Victoria's Secret ad defied commentary. But Seth Stevenson is giving it his best shot in Slate. Here's the ad, in which a tres sexy model cavorts to Dylan's song "Love Sick" while Zimmy himself pops up a few times, like an elderly lecher trying to peer into the model's window.

Rather than attempt to explicate this myself, I will merely note that "Love Sick" - which kicks off Dylan's multiple-Grammy 1997 album, Time out of Mind - is amassing a strange history. While Dylan was performing "Love Sick" at the 1998 Grammys, a guy jumped onto the stage with the words "Soy Bomb" painted on his bare chest and slithered around for about half a minute before being hauled away.

From vegetarianism to lingerie.

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