Memo To: Website Fans, Browsers, Clients
From: Jude Wanniski
Re: Minor Memos on the Margin
A Vote for Schundler: It would be an amazing upset if Jersey City Mayor Bret Schundler won the New Jersey governorship today over the Democratic nominee, Jim McGreevey, the Woodbridge mayor who narrowly lost four year ago to Christie Whitman. On the way into the office this morning, I stopped at the Frelinghuysen Middle School and voted for Schundler. McGreevey was heavily favored primarily because he ran a previous statewide race and is an attractive, upbeat fellow who is the organization candidate and would run the state under the direction of New Jersey’s Democratic Establishment. Schundler is a maverick, a supply-sider in the mode of Jack Kemp who won the Jersey City mayoralty by campaigning in black and minority districts. The New Jersey Republican Establishment has been almost consciously trying to undermine his campaign, still furious that he knocked off their man, Bob Franks, in the primary. On the assumption Schundler would lose, as the polls showed him 20 points behind a month ago, President Bush stayed away from the campaign, sending Vice President Cheney in for one event. The polls have tightened since last week, as New Jersey voters generally do not really make up their minds until the last weekend, so there remains an outside chance Schundler will win. If he does, it will be with a sizeable minority vote, and he will be on a presidential track.
Memorable Baseball: Patricia and I only watch post-season baseball, as it does take up too much time to be a fan all season. We rooted for “the Snakes,” as they are called in the New York tabloids, and were happy to see them beat those “Damn Yankees.” I’ve forgotten practically all the World Series games I’ve watched since the 1940s and early 1950s, when I was a crazed Dodger fan. I’ll not forget this series, with the Yanks winning games 4 and 5 in almost exactly the same improbable manner, behind two runs with two out in the 9th inning (Yankee manager Joe Torre said it was like Groundhog Day), and the Arizona Diamondbacks winning game #7 in an improbable 9th inning comeback. All this magic made me think of the oddest moments in my Dodger memories. First, because there was so much yapping last weekend about the Snake pitchers only having three days “rest,” I remembered Dodger pitcher Don Newcombe pitching and winning both ends of a day/night doubleheader, sometime in the early 1950s. I remember rightfielder Carl Furillo, the “Reading Rifle,” throwing out a runner at first base on a ball hit to him in right. I also remember Furillo reaching across home plate while the pitcher was about to give him a free base on balls and slamming the ball into left field for a double. I remember the Dodgers behind 8-0 in the ninth against the St. Louis Cardinals and winning 9-8, with Card third baseman Whitey Kurowski making three consecutive errors! And I remember Pete Reiser, the maniac center-fielder crashing into the concrete wall at Ebbets Field, holding on to the ball, and being carried off the field to the hospital. In 1949, I took my confirmation name at St. Catherine’s as “Peter,” in his honor. Dodger owner Branch Rickey then introduced padded walls to the Majors, also in “Pistol Pete’s” honor. I have dozens of other Dodger memories, but these were the first that floated to mind.
The Link Room: When Cedric Muhammad cranked up his “blackelectorate.com” website last year, it was soon clear to me the young man had a genius I had only suspected. Running it on a shoestring, with volunteers from the black community in and around Washington, D.C., Cedric soon had what I thought was easily the best black political website in the English-speaking world. Ever since, I’ve had it listed in the “pull-and-click” links we recommend. It gets better all the time, with Cedric, a member of the Nation of Islam, presenting the world’s news without political, racial or cultural prejudice on a most appealing home page. Now he has added “The Link Room,” which seems to me the best collection of links to the world’s English-speaking media that I’ve seen anywhere. There are 40 newspaper links to Africa, 5 to Israel, dozens and dozens to the Americas and the Middle East. There are “hip-hop” links and links to a great many religious and cultural newspapers and magazines. You can go directly to out “pull-and-click” tab to see his home page, and from there go to the new “Link Room,” or go directly to the room. If there is a link you would like, but don’t see there, write to Cedric and he will see what he can do.