Senator Jesse Helms (R-NC) 1921-2008
Rock-ribbed conservative, arch anti-communist "Senator No" served as senator from North Carolina from 1973 to 2002. The loony left hated Helms probably about as much as they hate George W. Bush. Senator Helms likely would consider that a compliment. Helms died, fittingly, on July 4th.
He understood Communism — he had Communism’s number. And that was the most important issue of his age. All those who sneered at him, degraded him — they did not have half the understanding that Helms had.
About everything concerning the Cold War, Helms was right. His critics and enemies were horribly wrong.
He also had the U.N.’s number. And the socialists’ number. And the universities’ number. (Pardon the redundancy.) And he had a very strong moral sense.
When a Ukrainian sailor named Medved jumped ship off the American coast, the only person in all the world who cared about him was Jesse Helms. U.S. authorities — under Reagan, no less — dragged him back to the Soviets, kicking and screaming.
And, as I understand it, Senator and Mrs. Helms adopted a supposedly unadoptable boy. When I interviewed him in 2005 — for the interview, go here — this was the only subject he declined to address. Modesty and humility ruled.
I don’t know that he was completely innocent on race. I doubt he was especially guilty — particularly for a white southerner born in 1921. And, about affirmative action — a.k.a. race preferences — he was 100 percent right.
He had the courage of his convictions, which is not enough, of course: Those convictions were right. Jesse Helms was courageous, right, and good. That is a powerful combination.
Tony Snow 1955-2008 - White House Press Secretary.
Sharp, self-assured, affable and very-much needed press secretary who disagreed with the President on many things but was truly an asset. What Scott McClellan is not.
Byron York from National Review:
So Snow became the best face the administration ever had. “Tony raised the bar for all future press secretaries,” Dana Perino, Snow’s deputy who now holds the press secretary’s job, told me. “He was especially effective talking about matters of national security — he understood the threat, he believed in the mission, and he had tremendous respect for our troops. He held the podium during the toughest days in Iraq, and we were grateful for his steadfastness in communicating that we would prevail if we didn’t let politics get in the way.”
Bobby Murcer 1946-2008
A beloved All-Star outfielder associated with the Yankees for four decades who hit 252 home runs died Saturday from complications of brain cancer. A fellow Oklahoman like Yankee great Mickey Mantle, Murcer was supposed to be the next great to follow in the footsteps of Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio and Mantle. A five-time All-Star and Gold Glover, Murcer was a solid though not quite Hall of Fame player who became a fixture in the Yankee broadcast booth.