Saturday, May 27, 2006

We keep telling them they don't understatnd.

The Iraqi foreign minister seems to accept Iran's claim that it isn't trying to build a nuclear bomb, and that the international community should drop its demands that Tehran prove it's not trying to build a nuclear weapon. However, Iraq the Model says that's not what the minister said and that CNN's translation is wrong.

Chalk up another point for the Blogosphere.

Memorial Day

This essay and watching Saving Private Ryan did it for me. I don't need a soldier's grave. I have a photo of one uncle who died in the South Pacific and the diary of another from the four years he spent in Japanese prison camps. I have profound and deep respect for those who serve in our military.

I think a President has two responsibilities as commander in chief. The first is to explain things to the people before he sends our troops into war and give them a chance to withhold their approval. That won't guarantee that Vietnam type fiascos won't occur, but at least we shouldn't say we were not told why, as the left has convinced itself was the case. What I don't understand is how I understood the purpose of the war and why it was worth doing but the whole media and a major political party thinks it was lied to. Nobody lied to me, except those who voted to support the war and then for political advantage have weaseled out.

The second responsibility of the C-in-C is to give our men and women the best equipment and support we have and a clear objective. And don't settle for anything less than a win. People will sacrifice to accomplish something good, such as overthrowing a despot, but not to restore the status quo ante.

Kerfuffle, Kerfuffle, Kerfuffle!

Sorry. I just can't muster much indignation over Hastert silliness. I don't know why he's only just now become a defender of the House's prerogatives, especially since it focuses more attention on the Abramoff scandal, but I have given up expecting members of Congress to see themselves as the rest of us see them.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Get us OUT of the U.N.

When I was in grade school, I learned from My Weekly Reader that the U.N. was destined to bring the values of the United States to all nations. Needless to say, that indoctrination has of fallen short of its promise. In Rwanda and Bosnia, and now in Darfur, the U.N. has shown that it prefers a stalemate to any positive action to save lives.

Galloway and Sheehan

Just as I was forgetting their existenceGeorge Galloway and Cindy Sheehan are recalled into the blogosphere.

Why anybody would seek moral advice from Galloway, I don't know. This doesn't even begin to plumb the depths of his depravity. For a demagogue whose original constituency has wised up, the Arab world must seem a gift from heaven, especially since there's a seat in Parliament with a majority Muslim electorate.

It is no great revelation that Sheehan is a "useful" or any other kind of idiot. She talks like a 6-year-old, complete with lisp, without affect. She's a sock puppet of the left, who happily celebrate her every burp as if it had some Dephic depth of wisdom. Of course, many of these same people seem to think that middle-aged women going topless is some kind of compelling argument against the right. The only thing I could see coming from this to help their cause might be that many conservatives might put their own eyes out with knitting needles. Of course, Sheehan does something equivalent every time she opens her mouth, revealing that there's nothing worth contemplating there.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Proof of Liberal Stupidity

Libby Copeland:
Those of us who rely on reason to vanquish our opponents find the perfect put-down infuriating. The put-down changes the terms of the debate; it replaces sober analysis with humor. It makes things personal. Anyone who was given a cutting nickname in seventh grade knows you can't argue with the perfect put-down. It's not a matter of what's right; it's a matter of perception, and you're stuck with it now.
Actually, the perfect put down works because it's true and exposed a major flaw in a person's argument.

What I found inexplicable is the statement that reporters "rely on reason to vanquish [their] opponents."

Huh! How about some examples? "Bush lied?" Yeah, that's factual, all right.

Reporters more and more these days rely on falsification, "fake but accurate" and "getting ahead of the news cycle" to bolster their faith in liberalism. When they publish outrageous stories, they never give retractions the same prominence they give to the original falsehood.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Gore of the Future

I love the photo accompanying this story on Al Gore's "comeback." It reminds me of those old Commie statues or the one of Saddam in Baghdad that was pulled down.

Hey, we're not the government

The ACLU may adopt new rules to discourage members of its board from criticizing the oranization in public.

Who the (bleep) are you?

Michael Medved spent an hour of his show today discussing the position of conservatives who plan to sit out this election on the theory that it will "teach the Republicans a lesson." Caller after caller talked about sending "them" a message.

I started to wonder who these people think they are. Because the party hasn't come to them and taken notes on their wishes, they're ready to turn Congress over to the Democrats. Their personal pique is more important than the fate of the country. Maybe, they seem to think, if Bush gets impeached, the tax cuts are reversed, and Pat Leahy gets to sit at the gate of future judicial appointments with a shotgun, well, done blame them. The GOP didn't do what they wanted. So, to hell with them!

Zombie Lies

Mark Twain:
A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.
The modern left has gone Twain one better. These days, a lie can be debunked and yet survive and continue to spread because some people want to believe it rather than the truth.


The angry yelps from the House because the FBI served a search warrant on the office of William Jefferson, remind me of the complaints about the Patriot Act and the claims that rights of privacy should come ahead of national security, or the belief that use of President's inherent power to protect this country requires authorization from the FISA court and Congress . This kind of thing comes up from time to time, where two principles come into conflict, and the normal balance is shifted by current events. William Jefferson's bribe taking is a criminal act, and the warrant was issued as part of that investigation not as a conspiracy between the Justice Department and the Judicial Branch to go fishing through House documents. What is there in his office which is so secret?

This reaction is so weird as to make one wonder whether anybody stopped to think how this would look to voters.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Is publishing leaked information ethical?

Jack Kelly recounts the Plame affair and the role the media, especially the New York Times, played in getting Patrick Fitzgerald appointed to investigate the leaking of Valerie Plame's position at the CIA and her relationship to Joe Wilson to the press.

Kelly notes the irony of Judy Miller's being jailed for contempt when she refused to name her sources for a story that she never reported, and this:
Being liberal requires flexibility of principle, but it's been fascinating to watch the contortions of journalists who argue that revealing Ms. Plame's identity was a serious breach of national security which must be prosecuted, but the other leaks are boons to the republic which should be applauded.
The press claims to espouse high standards of journalistic ethics, which seem to be much like the situational ethics that most of us would call hypocrisy and never so clearly as in this case.

In the end, the ethical principle involved seems to be "If it hurts George Bush, print it, and the law be damned." This is dishonest, prejudiced, anti-American and just plain unethical. Particularly obnoxious is the routine use of leaks by disgruntled bureaucrats. People don't leak information without some ulterior motive, either self-aggrandisement or a desire to undermine policy. The exception is when they are honestly concerned about corruption or neglect of duty, but more and more these days leaks seem to be accepted as shortcut to avoid real reporting.

Mort Kondracke is hardly a right-wing idealogue and he has written:
It's harmful enough that ideological conflict and partisan politics are preventing this country from solving its long-term challenges on health care, fiscal policy and energy. Now it's threatening our national survival.
He's right, but only the press can correct this dangerous situation.

If I were a publisher or editor, I'd be concerned about the amount of leaking and publishing of leaks, knowing that Watergate is the exception, not the rule, and that for the press to place itself above the law is not a service either to the public or to democracy.

How many cities can boast an historic landmark like this?

It's one of Brigham Young's houses where his wives and children lived.

Nope, no arrogance and elitism here.

Howell Raines:
We had a chance to stabilize and expand the literate, affluent minority that makes up the quality-information marketplace

Arrest Congress

It's a culture of corruption, all right. Unfortunately it's also bipartisan.

Monday, May 22, 2006


That's my reaction to Mark Helprin who was on Hugh Hewitt's show this afternoon. Soft spoken, his assessments of Iran and Iraq are not what I'd like to believe, but they aren't based on the medias' conventional wisdom either. All in all, it was a worrying analysis, making me feel that we need to deal with Iran sooner than later. He's no fan of Don Rumsfeld, but he doesn't come across as someone nursing an old grudge, like most of the retired generals who've been "speaking out." I can see his arguments and they seem persuasive, although I'm not convinced that trying to really occupy Iraq in the traditional sense, would have succeeded politically, but I feel for the first time that there's a well-thought out alternative.

The Minority Leader

Whenever I see him speaking, I start trying to find the words to describe him. He's a mousey looking man with a mild manner who says outrageous things from the Democrat talking points without a blush. Dennis Prager focuses on Reid as the model for his deconstruction of what passes today for liberal "thought." It occurred to me today, listening to callers to Michael Medved's program how isolated from reality most of these people are. They seem to start with their desired outcome, a failure of Bush's policy in Iraq, for example, then they construct a scenario and it becomes their reality, whether it's real or not. When a historian refutes the scenario with a study of previous wars, the response is a chorus of "that can't be right" and "it doesn't work that way."

Prager has noticed another pattern:
Welcome to the thoughtless world of contemporary liberalism. Beginning in the 1960s, liberalism, once the home of many deep thinkers, began to substitute feeling for thought and descended into superficiality.

One-word put-downs of opponents' ideas and motives were substituted for thoughtful rebuttal. Though liberals regard themselves as intellectual -- their views, after all, are those of nearly all university professors -- liberal thought has almost died. Instead of feeling the need to thoughtfully consider an idea, most liberal minds today work on automatic. One-word reactions to most issues are the liberal norm.
Which brings me back to the perfect word for Harry Reid: pipsqueak.

The Great Green Hope

Are dishonest businessmen and Republicans "helping" Al Gore's tedious film become a success? Or is it just the same old Bush hatred that drives Michael Moore's hate-fests. The problem with this global warming stuff is that, when you boil it all down, it's based on computer models predicting conditions 20, 50 and 100 years out--models of one of the most complex systems known to mankind. A dynamic system is one in which every factor that changes can effect every other one. These models can work where the physics are well-understood, as with fluid dynamics and airplanes, but the earth is one of the prime examples of chaos, where the most that can really be predicted is a range of outcomes. This is the source of the famous claim that a butterfly flapping its wings in the northern hemisphere can result in a hurricane later in the southern hemisphere. I doubt that's true, but it illustrates a principle: some things you just can't know in advance.

The global warming scenario is perfect for environmentalists to use for fundraising. I knew that before I read Michael Crichton's book. Imagine. A gas we all breathe out is breathed in by every green plant on the planet is the culprit and, coincidentally, it's created by every form of combustion. As long as people burn anything for energy other than pure hydrogen it threatens the planet! That's a fundraising gold mine.

Al Gore is thought to be one of the brighter lights on the left, but if he really were, he'd be exposing the problems with GW theory instead of preaching on its behalf.

Why am I not swept with confidence?

This piece is based on a new book with "15 essays by leading foreign policy thinkers in the Democratic Party."
Partly because of his errors in Iraq, partly due to his own shortcomings as a communicator, and partly due to the myopia of his top aides at the Pentagon and elsewhere, the president has failed to rally progressive forces, both in the West and in the Middle East, against an ideology that is profoundly hostile to liberal values and to the humane ethos of genuine Islam.
Excuse me, but this sounds like it's leading up to a reprise of John Kerry's plan to "rejoin the community of nations." You know. Like the community that Saddam bought off with the Oil For Food Program.

Rally progressive forces? Isn't that what we've been doing in Darfur?

Hugh and Duane are hounding John Campbell

It's all about the tie. Now Campbell is a natty dresser, while I still wear paisley patterned silk ties. Given that caveat, I don't think his tie is all that ugly, especially when his jacket is buttoned. Campbell is a smart cookie and his positions on issues mirror my own. He's one of the good guys.

If you want to make fun of people's ties, go look at Ted Kennedy, or those pipsqueaks Kucinich and Reid.

The knock on Reid

Sherman Frederick the editor of the conservative Las Vegas Review-Journal says Harry Reid is toast.

If he were a Democrat, George Bush would be almost deified for America's economic performance. What's strange is that most of the population doesn't even know how much growth there is, let alone give credit for it.

It's getting scary

Morton Kondracke writes that Bush Hatred is threatening our national security. I think he's right.

The definition of "schmuck"

The photo says it all.

Trust your local school board?

Think again.

How nuts are the Democrats?

This nuts, I guess. Bush is worse than Nixon? And John Edwards is a worse choice than John Kerry.

Maybe they'll have to prove damage after all.

The case against Libby turns again.

AG says reporters can be prosecuted for revealing classified info.

If you're the media, and you publish state secrets you can't be prevented, but you can be punished. And even if you win, you lose.

Boy, Howdy!

Nagin has been re-elected, and a local congressman has been caught taking bribes. Does this look like a good spot to put more money?

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Intolerance deserves intolerance

Another excellent reason to drill in ANWR and get busy developing oil shale. This is one area where free trade may not be in our national interest.

How soon can we close down all the Saudi-run mosques here?

Democrats seek new "message"

It seems that the "culture of corruption" talking point has been . . . well, corrupted.

Maybe the new message should be "A Culture of Big Government is A Culture of Corruption!"

The Rove Non-indictment

Like Nuclear Winter, the Rapture, and Evolution, the imminent indictment of Karl Rove has been postponed. Two new memes have been born.
We erred in getting too far out in front of the news-cycle.. . . We will be taking the wait-and-see approach for the time being.
Presumably, given sufficient time, everything which could happen, will happen, right? In the future, however, if you want to be believed, DON'T SPECIFY A DATE!

Who Ain't Human?

I got John Prine's new CD today. Sounds good, like always, except for the track, "Some Humans Ain't Human," which is anti-Bush, and illustrates once again how stupid the left is, and how easily they accept simplistic groupthink. He claims that overthrowing Saddam was inhuman? What about leaving him in power, with his two sons ready to pick up where he left off? To me, that sounds racist, callous and inhuman.

Why do these people think George Bush wanted to rid the world of this scum? Oh, yeah. It was revenge for Saddam trying to kill Bush's old man. Except that George Bush believes in Jesus Christ whose gospel forbids revenge, and teaches that no greater love than to give one's life for another.

Well then, it was for their oiiil! Sorry guys, it would have been a lot cheaper to buy Saddam's oil.

OK. It was because he had WMD. But wait, he lied about the WMD!

Well, I guess it could only be because he's conservative and we know those Republicans are all war profiteers and they can't be human like us. They don't have human feelings like we on the left do.

Gee, John, that's pretty unhuman of you, but as you say, some humans ain't human.

It's part of the code

This is what we think of PETA out here in the West. (Via Tim Blair)