Thursday, January 26, 2006

My sister used to warn me about the International Bankers' conspiracy.

But I didn't listen. Now, I'm beginning to see what she was talking about. She just didn't tell me that the MSM was in on it.

Profiles in Liberal Courage

K-Lo at the Corner alerts us to Ted Kennedy's statement on supporting a filibuster of Alito:
Other than voting to send our men and women to war, there is no more important vote in the Senate than our vote on a Supreme Court nominee. This is a vote of a generation and a test of conscience. Judge Alito does not share the values of equality and justice that make this country strong. He does not deserve a place on the highest court of the land.

We owe it to future generations of Americans to oppose this nomination. If Judge Alito is confirmed, he will serve on the court long after President Bush leaves office, and the progress of half a century on the basic rights of all Americans is likely to be rolled back. He's the wrong Justice for justice and the rule of law in America.
Subtext: Hey, it worked on Bork! Actually he doesn't care about future generations so much as he cares about making them smaller!

Meanwhile, Lincoln Chafee is putting off his decision. Cornerites debate whether the MSM will dub this a "bipartisan" confirmation vote or, if Chafee votes no, a "bipartisan" opposition. (Or is that "Cornerians?")


I'd say Bevis and Butthead was a better comparison. Paris and Nicole may be airheaded floozies, but at least they're eye candy.

Check the thermostat down there!

Robert C. Byrd endorses confirmation of Judge Alito. And I thought he was losing his edge.

Seriously, his remarks about the way the hearings have been conducted really deserve some attention. He clearly denounced the practice of trying to win political victories through the courts.

He's up for re-election this year, and he referenced many letters he's received about objecting to the way the hearings were conducted. He must be worried.

Regardless of his reasons for giving them, his points were well taken. C-Span is listing 55 votes for Alito, but the Dems are still delaying a vote. I can't do any better at pointing out the genuine silliness of these efforts, particularly John Kerry's attempt to get a filibuster organized.

You'd think a state like Massachusetts would be embarrassed to keep electing Senators like Kennedy and Kerry. But I've said that about Senator Hatch, as well.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

My Mormon Name . . .

is Arville Davenport Shore!

What's yours?

Maybe SeaWorld could find a part for him.

Say, you don't think Bill Clinton would appear on . . . ?

Uh, no. I guess Hillary wouldn't let him. Bad for her campaign. Besides, they might capture him in some degrading activity that wasn't scripted. Besides, he's already trumped anything outrageous Hollywood could dream up.

I'm an Audi TT!

You're not the fastest, nor the most nimble, but you're cute and you have style. You're not intensely competitive, but when you pass by, everyone turns to look.

Take the Which Sports Car Are You? quiz.

Something tells me you'll be flattered, no matter what you say. After all, they're all sportscars.

Boy, I don't feel all that cute or even moderately fast. Maybe I need a valve job. The only way I'd turn heads would to be if I came in chrome yellow.


I just heard a caller, Mike the Liberal, call into the Medved program where Fred Barnes was plugging his new book. His first question was "Are you delusional?" Now that'll open up the discussion. That's what I see mostly from liberals--insults replacing arguments, accompanied by a failure to realize that there is a different. Thus anyone who doesn't share their orthodoxy is delusional. But if someone were truly delusional, would he know it? One might as well say, "No. Are you?"

But why bother? Liberals these days are constantly stating highly tendentious assertions with no proof whatsoever, as if John Kerry or Chuck Schumer saying it makes it true. Then they get mad if everybody doesn't agree, and really, really mad if more people doubt it than believe it. Examples: "We wouldn't be in this war in Iraq if Bush hadn't lied!" (This is called projection, from the way LBJ cozened the Senate to pass the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution.); "Bush was a draft dodger/deserter during Vietnam!" (But, hey, who wasn't? Nudge, nudge.); "Bush's authorization of NSA wiretaps was/is illegal!" (Just like Nixon!).

That's class

Glenn Reynolds, as usual, goes right to the heart of the "interactivity" debate over blogging:
I love open comments, just as I love free beer, free pizza, and other giveaway goods. But I'm not entitled to them. And those who partake, I think, owe a certain degree of civility to their hosts.

In an age where there's less control, I think that such informal measures matter more, not less.

Free beer will, no doubt, attract a lot of beer drinkers to the party, but what the Washington Post experience showed is that once they're there and drunk and the party has deteriortated into a brawl not a discussion, and at some point you have to send in the bouncers and clear the house. Civility is the fundamental requirement for interactivity. Too many libertarians and angry liberals don't understand that, which is why they aren't, as a group, taken very seriously. I don't agree with Glenn all the time and some of his interests are not my own, but he challenges me to think and articulate my own responses. If he just lobbed obscenities at anybody who doesn't agree with him. I'd be gone.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Funny isn't it,

how liberals have discovered that Sandra Day O'Connor was really a great pick after all?

I just wish that every SCOTUS justice had to repeat every day that their job is to keep the law on keel and stay out of policymaking. When they start thinking they're supposed to settle every great policy debate, they need to remember that debates are what democracy is all about. Settling things by decree is what dictators do.

What the left aren't acknowledging is that, if Roberts and Alito were to vote to overrule Roe, it wouldn't be to impose a constitutional prohibition on abortion. The debate would continue. Some states would allow abortions. Some would prohibit them. But remember that this nation was founded on an unresolvable debate over whether some people could be counted as 3/5 of a person and could be the property of others. Ultimately it was the states and the people who resolved that issue by bloodshed.

Nearly every state today has laws against treating dogs and cats the way people used to use Negroes. So the idea that a baby in the womb is of less worth than a dog or a cat or a slave, really bothers me. But I believe in the principle that when the voice of the people choses that which is evil, they will suffer the judgments of God.
The debate needs to keep going on the political level. Attempts by courts to settle it by fiat do no good and only serve to make the debate more angry and bitter.

The law of this nation is the law of a republic, literally a thing of the people. It must always remain so, subject to principles stated in the Constitution. The Constitution is elastic, but it is not living. It's basic principle is the eternal shifting balance between the will of the majority and the rights of the minority. However, we should not be confused by the sophistry that abortion is a right of the woman and that an embryonic person has no rights. Essentially pro-abortion advocates see pregnancy as a kind of slavery for women. Anti-abortion advocates see it as essential to the life of society and see those fetuses as incipient citizens with rights. We should be able to work out a compromise, which I think would be possible without the meddling of the Supreme Court.

You call that a timewaster?

I just saw an ad for the Karaoke Channel! Yikes!

I guess those terrible American Idol contestants have to come from somewhere, but eeyew!

A sentimentality

I saw a guy in green camo fatigues at the grocery store, an obvious serviceman. I didn't know him, but I interrupted his conversation to tell him thanks. I really love those guys, and wish I'd been good enough to get in when I was their age. I got choked up and still do just thinking about it. I'd salute every one of 'em.

I will always be grateful to President Bush, Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld for showing us that our military has kept its honor and learned the lessons of Vietnam far better than people like Kerry, Murtha, etc. have. Our men and women in the military are no different from the rest of us. Most good, honest and hardworking. All volunteers. A few jerks like Charles Graner, but the vast majority well-trained, well-armed, good at what they do and a credit to their country. We need our warriors, now as ever, and the tradition of service to our nation.

When I was a kid, I heard stories about men among men from those who had served in WWII. I always assumed I would spend at least two years in the service. That's what people did on the way to manhood. But somehow it never happened for me. After listening to others in law school talk about their experiences in the military, even one guy who was a helicopter pilot in Vietnam describing with a grin a firefight he'd been in. I decided that maybe I could serve with a law degree where I didn't have the physique to be a grunt. Both my brothers served in the military, one as a dentist in the Air Force Reserve and the other as an M.D. doing his residency.

But I got turned down for the Navy JAG. The Marine recruiters took one look at my glasses and let me know Uncle Sam didn't need me that much. I guess that rite of passage wasn't for me, and I've always felt like those who went were the real men.

Anyway, the incident at the grocery store reminded me that my lifetime has been an exceptional period of prosperity relative to the parts of the world that were destroyed by war, and that it can't last forever. My parents lived through the Great Depression and WWII. We boomers were born on third base and think we hit a triple. I suspect that our children will see hard times again. Social Security and Medicare and our flagging education system practically guarantee it.

Nevertheless, if we can prevent more world wars, the global economy will continue to grow, and everyone's boat will continue to rise. Dictators will be overthrown and freedom will spread. All that will be possible because of the English-speaking world's willingness to maintain a strong military and head off the threats that are always arising. But heaven help us if we ever allow people like Ted Kennedy or John Kerry to take control or if we listen to the siren song of the socialists who want to spend more and more on "entitlements" (an illusion is ever there was one) and less and less on everything else, especially defense. They remind me of the fairy tale about the goose that laid golden eggs and the fool who killed it in order to get all the eggs as once. (Sometime I'll have to do an essay about the wisdom in fairy tales and how we forget them at our peril.)

In the meantime America will keep the peace and support freedom as long as we can. For that vision to last, we need men and women like those who are willing to go stand up to the Zarqawis and bin Ladens of the world, not for an American empire, but because we just don't like it when innocent people are brutalized and murdered by bullies and power seekers. No matter what liberals say, Americans are still good people who want to help the helpless and protect the fatherless and the widow and those who just want a chance to make their children's lives better.

I celebrate our warrior class, and thank the Lord for them every time I think of them. I hope more and more young people see service as not just an opportunity for training and college and citizenship, but as a chance to prove themselves and give something back. America, for all its faults, is the hope of the world. Let's not squander our blessings.

Let freedom ring!

Freedom of speech, which was always about political speech, is showing signs of returning from it's long exile in the name of keeping money out of politics. Years ago, I attended a school for candidates, where I learned some of the basic political facts of life. Rule One was "Money is the mother's milk of politics." It's true and you can't change it. The trick is getting more small donations and fewer George Soroses and Hollywood bankrollers. Let's hope the tide is turning with W's appointees.

[Another one of the rules was that you have to reach out to swing voters without losing your base. That's the Democrats' problem today. They've alienated swing voters and a lot of their traditional base in order to let a bunch of aging sixties radicals indulge their nostalgia. They like to talk about fighting, but what they mean is demonstrating and mouthing off, not real fighting like the people who win wars do.]

Harry Belafonte has hoisted a few too many bananas!

He's got the NAACP disease, and CNN is enabling his ravings. The phrase, "Shut up and sing!" comes to mind.

I used to love his album recorded at Carnegie Hall. If it were today, he'd be calling the audience a bunch of "kikes." Doesn't he have anybody to keep him at the home?

Monday, January 23, 2006

I wonder what John Belushi would be doing today.

I just happened onto The Blues Brothers" on AMC. I'd forgotten what made it such a great feel-good movie. Ray Charles, the old 1960s skinny ties and the music. The rest of it is just an excuse to celebrate the R&B culture from my teen years. That's what Animal House was really about as well: John Belushi taking the guitar away from the folksinger and smashing it.

Even the political and racial tensions became a form of nostalgia. There are Jake and Elwood singing Stand By Your Man behind a chicken wire screen. Isn't that reall what America is all about? Working out our differences and making fun of ourselves afterwards. That and thinking about what'll happen when the feces hit the fan.

And it couldn't have happened without that great Canadian, Dan Ackroyd and his pitch perfect Chicago accent.

Keep your drugs and alcohol. Give me back John Belushi.