John McCaslin

Men who wear bow ties are "a little weird."

In fact, a new study by HCD Research says they're perceived as older, dull, fidgety and Republican. (Still, when it comes to sporting colorful bow ties, who doesn't fondly recall the now-deceased Sen. Paul Simon, llinois Democrat?)

Continuing on, a majority of Americans don't want a bow tie wearer "in the neighborhood, as a friend, or in the family."

Based only on a faceless photo, more people want to just stay away from the bow tie man.

Simon says

Speaking of the late Sen. Paul Simon of Illinois, he would be happy to know that the television endorsement he taped just days before his sudden death helped propel the relatively unknown politician Barack Obama into the U.S. Senate and ultimately the race for the White House.

A presidential candidate himself in 1988, Mr. Simon, who died Dec. 9, 2003, after heart surgery, had endorsed Mr. Obama in the TV commercial, which was still aired after his death.

White man's land

Former Al Gore presidential campaign Chairman Donna Brazile, who was born in New Orleans, is teaming up with the American Civil Liberties Union this evening to host a Washington screening of the Hurricane Katrina-related film "Desert Bayou."

"The most devastating thing about Katrina is what it revealed about America," say the film's producers. "In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, 600 African-Americans were airlifted to the almost entirely white state of Utah — without their knowledge.

"Subjected to three criminal background checks, they were put up at an isolated military base miles outside of Salt Lake City."

Missing Dunn

Hundreds are expected to gather in the House Ways and Means Committee hearing room for tomorrow's 4 p.m. memorial service honoring the life and career of former Rep. Jennifer Dunn, the six-term Washington Republican who died unexpectedly Sept. 5.

She was the first woman to serve in the House Republican leadership, and more importantly in these divisive days on Capitol Hill, she was well respected on both sides of the aisle.

More to Mamie

She was a self-described housewife and loving grandmother who doted on her family. But now we're told that first lady Mamie Eisenhower ran the executive mansion like an "Army sergeant."

Writer and historian Marilyn Irvin Holt, author of the just-released "Mamie Doud Eisenhower: The General's First Lady" — and who will lecture tomorrow evening from 5:30 to 7:30 at the Eisenhower Institute at 915 15th St. NW — describes Mrs. Eisenhower as an agent for change, who not only entertained foreign dignitaries, but invited black Americans into the White House at a time when civil rights tensions were mounting.

Scaring kids

We told you yesterday about Al Gore's children's version of "An Inconvenient Truth," in which the former vice president gripes about growing up a senator's son in Washington's elite "Embassy Row," where he was forced to live "in a small eighth-floor apartment whose windows looked out on concrete parking lots and buildings."

(Gag us with a silver spoon, why don't you?)

Now tell your children about Holly Fretwell's "The Sky's Not Falling: Why It's OK to Chill about Global Warming," a new book for children ages 8 to 12 "designed to inform, not indoctrinate, on the subject of global warming."

In promoting her book, the author quotes meteorologist and hurricane authority William Gray of Colorado State University as saying: "We're brainwashing our children." He continues, "They're going to the Gore movie and being fed all this. It's ridiculous."


John McCaslin

John McCaslin is a contributing columnist on Townhall.com and author of Inside The Beltway: Offbeat Stories, Scoops, and Shenanigans from around the Nation's Capital .

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