News of the Tautological

Daily Best of the Web   —   Posted on February 27, 2013

The following is an excerpt from’s “Best of the Web” written by the editor, James Taranto.

The World’s Smallest Violin
“Lobbyists Fear Shakedown if Supreme Court Lifts Campaign Contributions Cap”–headline,, Feb. 26

News of the Tautological
“State Lawmakers Don’t Have as Much Money as They Hoped”–headline, Daily Herald (Provo, Utah), Feb. 26

Living Up to Expectations
In another story reminiscent of the early Reagan years, the Falkland Islands, a British territory whose invasion by Argentina sparked a 1982 war, are holding a referendum on their status next month. Falklanders are expected to affirm their desire to remain British. On a visit to London yesterday, John Kerry, the haughty, French-looking secretary of state who by the way served in Vietnam, was asked to weigh in. Nile Gardiner of the Daily Telegraph has the transcript:

Question: Mr. Secretary, do you believe the democratically expressed will of the Falkland Islanders in their forthcoming referendum should be respected?

Kerry: Well, let me be very clear about our position with respect to the Falklands, which I believe is clear. First of all, I’m not going to comment, nor is the President, on a referendum that has yet to take place and hasn’t taken place.

Our position on the Falklands has not changed. The United States recognizes de facto U.K. administration of the islands, but takes no position on the question of the parties’ sovereignty claims thereto. And we support cooperation between U.K. and Argentina on practical matters, and we continue to urge a peaceful resolution of that critical issue. And I think that’s exactly what our position has been, that’s what it remains, and we look forward to the future.

The first quoted paragraph from the secretary is classic Kerry: “Let me be very clear. . . . First of all, I’m not going to comment.”

For his part Gardiner calls Kerry’s comments “yet another slap in the face for Britain and the Falklands Islanders from a US administration that cares more about appeasing a third-rate, declining socialist regime in Latin America than standing with America’s closest friend and ally.”

It seems to us, too, that a clear U.S. statement of support for the Falklanders and their British protectors would be more effective at defusing any threat of another invasion.

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