A few things I meant to discuss in greater depth last night, that all seem to have to do with discrimination

+I think RuPaul is a great contribution to Black History Month -- and why not? "I am representative of the black male experience," RuPaul told me then. "Because that's what I am. Indeed. But this goes to the Black community's lingering social conservatism -- and its very lamentable views on gays.

+Is there any real, justifiable reason for not letting women take on full combat roles in the American armed forces? They're now on the front lines in very visible ways and can clearly hold their own. I think the Israeli Army makes it clear that women are just as effective soldiers as men, yes?

+I think Glenn Greenwald might be missing the point. He's right in the narrow way in which he defines the issue. But if you change the wording in question to something like -- "I couldn't quite imagine any venture requiring the US to correct hundreds of years of colonial misrule and changing cultural attitudes in the region turning out especially well." -- we'd have a very different situation; indeed, you'd have a pretty common liberal argument about the wrong-headedness of going into Iraq and Afghanistan. Neocons argued that "Arabs" broadly (and here they included also Pashtuns and other groups in the Middle East) were ready for democracy and could handily implement it -- arguing that history and culture worked against democracy, as many liberals did, was also troublingly racist to my mind. That doesn't make TNR right, but it does blunt the impact of Greenwald's criticism a bit.