Saturday, September 09, 2006

Area 51 aircraft

I love stories like this!

Raped by ID

Pat Shipman defends evolution with paranoia:
Do not mistake my objection. If my neighbors and their children wish to believe in Intelligent Design as a matter of faith that is fine with me. What I object to most strenuously is the presentation of a religious belief as a scientific theory in a science class.. . .

The threat posed by ID became more real to me when colleagues at Ohio State University . . . became involved in an extraordinary situation. A Ph.D. candidate in science education, high school teacher Bryan Leonard, wrote a dissertation on the following research questions: "When students are taught the scientific data both supporting and challenging macroevolution, do they maintain or change their beliefs over time? What empirical, cognitive and/or social factors influence students' beliefs? . . .

These events prompted me to take ID seriously, and this movement scares me. Now I feel like a jogger in the park at night who realizes that she is far too isolated and that the shadows are far too deep. At first I ignored that faint rustling behind me, convincing myself it was just wind in the leaves. Louder noises made me jump and turn around, but I saw nothing. Now I know that I and my colleagues in science are being stalked with careful and deadly deliberation. I fear my days are numbered unless I act soon and effectively. If you are reading this, the chances are that you are in the same position.

The success of the ID movement to date is terrifying.. . .

The Intelligent Design movement is a deliberate campaign to undermine the teaching of science in America,. . .

As scientists, we must stop ignoring the ID movement. It won't go away. Each of us must learn to avoid jargon in order to communicate better with the public. Every scientist should become a mentor; share your experience of the wonder and beauty of science! Finally, critically, we must expose Intelligent Design for what it really is: religious prejudice masked as intellectual freedom.
When someone defends his position with anger, dire warnings and hyperbole, I get suspicious.

I don't really think that ID or creationism should be taught in public schools, but I can't help noticing that even evolutionists themselves constantly use language implying design and intent. Maybe that's just how we think--if something results in a competitive advantage, we assign a "purpose" to it. Science writers and even scientists refer to specific behaviors and adaptions as if they were "chosen" by evolution, which is referred to in terms that suggest it is an intelligent force, like Mother Nature. Maybe it's hardwired into our brains.

But that stuff about feeling like a lone jogger being stalked by a criminal really struck me as weird. I don't think that ID is the cause of the decline of teaching seience and mathematics. And I don't think you get anywhere by waxing hysterical over trends you don't like. The whole piece is an emotional appeal denouncing the emotional appeal of ID. If anything, this whole debate is a result of the failure of Darwinists to make an airtight case.

In case ABC wimps out

Here's an NBC report on Predator video of Osama taken in 2000, late in the Clinton administration. Don't forget to watch the efforts to excuse Clinton's administration.

Look, nobody really wants to assign blame to one or the other. My point, and that of most conservatives, is that there's plenty to go around, and all the wriggling by Clinton and his top officials to get off that hook, while leaving Bush firmly impaled, is very unbecoming.

Creeping Dem-mentia?

It's no longer creeping. It's now in full gallop. This week's antics by the Democrats prove once again that there is no bottom to their hypocrisy.

If you were counting on Moderate Muslims to stand up for freedom

The Fjordman says "Don't."
Poul E. Andersen, former dean of the church of Odense, Denmark, warns against false hopes of dialogue with Muslims. During a debate at the University of Aarhus, Ahmad Akkari, one of the Muslim participants, stated: “Islam has waged war where this was necessary and dialogue where this was possible. A dialogue can thus only be viewed as part of a missionary objective.”

When Mr. Andersen raised the issue of dialogue with the Muslim World League in Denmark, the answer was: “To a Muslim, it is artificial to discuss Islam. In fact, you view any discussion as an expression of Western thinking.” Andersen’s conclusion was that for Islamists, any debate about religious issues is impossible as a matter of principle. If Muslims engage in a dialogue or debate on religious subjects, this is for one purpose only: To create more room for Islam.
Americans lulled into the politically correct dogma that dialogue is better than confrontation, are likely to wake up too late to the fact that their own government is opposed to their religious freedom.

Where did he think he was, Wisconsin? Obviously, BYU cares more about its reputation than some other schools.

ABC, a conservative shill?

If you need more proof that BDS is real, here it is! The Vast Rightwing Conspiracy is still after the Clinton's. I never saw any conservatives as paranoid over the Clintons than they are themselves.

My favorite line is this bit of "so what?": "On Tuesday, ABC was forced to concede that 'The Path to 9/11' is 'a dramatization, not a documentary.'" Was that ever an issue, with actors portraying all the principles?

Much is made over the outrage from the right over the Reagan film made several years ago. It ended up on Showtime running multiple times without editing, after CBS backed out, but I don't recall the Senate threatening anybody's broadcast license.

Maybe this will remind everybody why they were so tired of the Clintons after they left, and it doesn't even mention Marc Riche.

Friday, September 08, 2006

So which company do they hate more?

The attacks on Wal-Mart seem to have replaced those on Halliburton, except for this one. I wonder who's next.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Ruining Cable

My favorite channels on TV have been the Discovery Networks Science Channel and the History and History International Channels. But they're now running documentaries like "What you need to know about global warming" with Tom Brokaw standing in for Al Gore, and now Ted Koppel is promoting a new special called "The Price of Security," with an anxious voiceover about millions of conversations monitored and secret prisons, as if they really expect us to believe that they're just tapping random phone calls and imprisoning people they grab off the street. You just know he's going to cite the Benjamin Franklin quote about trading freedoms for security. Is there nowhere one can go to be free from these creeps?

Free Speech, Democrat Style

If you can pressure the historians to leave it out, it didn't happen. Unfortunately, most of us remember it more clearly. All that needs to be pointed out is how many terrorist attacks went practically unanswered during Clinton's years in office, leading Al Qaeda to conclude that we were wimps. Does he really think that changing a docudrama five years after the fact will change that conclusion. These are the people who are always comparing America to Orwell's novel, 1984, but they're the ones insisting on redacting history.

Don't they realize what message these tactics send to the rest of us? And can you imagine any network doing this for any Republican?

Sandy Berger's complaint is not quite a claim of strong leadership:
In no instance did President Clinton or I ever fail to support a request from the CIA or US military to authorize an operation against bin Laden or al Qaeda.
Nor did they ever treat the repeated attacks by Al Qaeda as anything serious enough to demand anything beyond their cursory attention. All his statement amounts to is an admission that the CIA knew better than to ask or or that it even considered Al Qaeda to be a serious threat.

Boy, it must really bug liberals that the the sponsor of this ad is called Progress for America.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Get Rumsfeld on this fast!

Months ago I saw an Israeli system for blocking PRGs before they can reach a vehicle equipped with it. Now, NBC has reported that the Army brass have blocked purchases of it because it has a system under development with Raytheon which is supposed to do the same thing but won't be deployable until 2011. The Israeli system is ready now and has been tested, achieving 95% to 98% protection.

Now we know why Rumsfeld is getting fragged by Army generals. He's killed several of their pet projects. It the DOD doesn't buy all of these they can get hold of ASAP, and deploy them in Iraq, it will deserve all the criticism it will get.

If he didn't write this, he should have.


What's the big deal about Windows Vista?

This. The computer mags say that you'll need a new computer to make it run with the speed you're used to. What else is new?

Is this 3-d effect worth the hassle? Is there anything else to justify the time and expense of switching? Not so far.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

How many Palestinians does it take to equal one Israeli?

800 according to the prisoner swap agreement approved by the Olmert administration. That may be a true ratio, but it will prove far more expensive. Perhaps this will blow back on both sides. If the terrorists continue to take hostages with the idea of trading for prisoners, how long before the Israelis just start killing people they would have taken prisoner in the past?

Judge Wilkinson is wrong

Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson opposes passage of Anti-gay Marriage amendments, but his argument strikes me as fallacious. He correctly criticizes the judges who started this by entertaining suits based on the specious claim that disallowing same-sex marriage was a constitutional violation. But then opposes the only meaningful way those who disagree with such judicial activation have to counter it.
It would be altogether understandable for Congress and state legislatures to counter this constitutional excess with constitutional responses of their own. Yet it would be the wrong thing to do.

The Framers meant our Constitution to establish a structure of government and to provide individuals certain inalienable rights against the state. They certainly did not envision our Constitution as a place to restrict rights or enact public policies, as the Federal Marriage Amendment does.
I agree with him in principle, but I'm not so sure the framers really intended it the way it has turned out. They gave precious little attention to clarifying the role of the courts. The doctrine that the courts as the interpreters of the Constitution is not stated in the document. It was simply asserted by John Marshall and everybody else went along.

I suspect that the Framers expected it to be much easier to amend the Constitution than it has proven to be with a greater number of states in the Union. So people have turned instead to the states where it is much easier to bring them to a vote.
Judge Wilkinson's claim that the amendment route will lock us into these choices is to ignore the fact that they were able to be adopted in the first place. He writes:
To use the Constitution for prescriptions of policy is to shackle future generations that should have the same right as ours to enact policies of their own. To use the Constitution as a forum for even our most favored views strikes a blow of uncommon harshness upon disfavored groups, in this case gay citizens who would never see this country's founding charter as their own.
So his real purpose here is to make the Gay Rights argument once more that the rest of us should validate their unions as the equivalent of a traditional marriage because the Constitution says so, and we shouldn't change it because, well, you shouldn't change the Constitution. If that sounds like a tautology, it is.

In the end, the problem is created by activist judges who use judicial review to make up their own legislation and pass it without consulting with the people or their representatives. When judges do that, they invite being overruled through constitutional amendments, because that's all we have left.

Romney blasts Khatami

He galavanized Hugh Hewitt's audience just minutes ago explaining that he has ordered that no state personell will give Khatami an escort or provide any security services when Khatami visits Harvard where he has been, inexplicably, invited to speak. He should not have been given a visa. He's a criminal and a terrorist.

Meanwhile, Bush critics continue to denounce the use of the term "fascist" to describe the people we're fighting. Victor Davis Hanson pulls no punches. The leftists who have overwhelmed the responsible Democrats are working to distract us from who these people are and what they intend and to get us lost in "nuance." Hugh asked Romney specifically about this silly criticism and he joined Bush in affirming that it's the appropriate term.

I can't help feeling proud of Mitt Romney and hoping he will catch fire and take off. We really need strong leadership now more than ever, and he's the best I've seen. We just need to get more people to hear him speak.

Kofi in Teheran

Tim Hames makes the case against "giving peace a chance" again in Iran. In this case, that would mean allowing it to develop nuclear weapons. And the U.N. is as feckless as ever.

If that doesn't demonstrate their peaceful intent, what will? If the Republicans want to save their jobs, they ought to promise to withdraw from that failed experiment. That might earn some forgiveness from their base.

Why bother?

The NYTimes faults the justice department for dropping off terrorism proseutions. Probably after they realized that Bin Laden had been tipped off that we were able to tap his satellite phone calls when it was revealed in court during the prosecution of the truck bomb attack on the WTC.

In the 8th paragraph it becomes clear that the reason for the "drop off" is that it only focused on prosecutions for terrorism after the fact, while the DOJ has been targeting terrorists before they have a chance to complete their acts. Once again we see how the Times tailors its reporting depending on who's in the White House. How can any sane person think like this?

News from the Holy Jihad Brigades

I guess they don't appreciate the value of a tourist industry.

When you look at his picture does it seem to say "I'm going to go join Al Qaeda and then they'll all be sorry for treating me this way."?

Monday, September 04, 2006

Another CAIR package

AFP "reports," and John Hinderaker disputes, the claim that American Muslims are being mistreated. Frankly, I'm surprised that there hasn't been more real persecution, given their general silence on the Islamic credentials of the terrorists. CAIR seems intent on building their sense of victimhood with its repeated whining accusations. I think most Muslims just want to keep a low profile, but having a thin skin is not the best way to earn the trust and respect of the rest of us.

My impression is that devout traditional Muslims don't care for the agreesive and hostile behavior of the terrorists, but don't dare say much for fear of being denounced by the Imams who have been hired to preach Salafist (Wahhabist) fundamentalism. They'd get more support from other Americans if they showed some spunk. Of course, for all I know, they could be in sympathy with the terrorists. My feeling though is that this is unlikely. I doubt that Islam encourages speaking one's mind.

Another CAIR package

AFP "reports," and John Hinderaker disputes, the claim that American Muslims are being mistreated. Frankly, I'm surprised that there hasn't been more real persecution, given their general silence on the Islamic credentials of the terrorists. CAIR seems intent on building their sense of victimhood with its repeated whining accusations. I think most Muslims just want to keep a low profile, but having a thin skin is not the best way to earn the trust and respect of the rest of us.

My impression is that devout traditional Muslims don't care for the agreesive and hostile behavior of the terrorists, but don't dare say much for fear of being denounced by the Imams who have been hired to preach Salafist (Wahhabist) fundamentalism. They'd get more support from other Americans if they showed some spunk. Of course, for all I know, they could be in sympathy with the terrorists. My feeling though is that this is unlikely. I doubt that Islam encourages speaking one's mind.

High hopes

One of the problems the current activists running the Democrats is their cocooning. They think they're winning because "everybody" says so. That's why so many of them still think Bush wasn't elected. They don't know anybody who voted for him.

There is another view of the trends.

I wouldn't know who will win two months from now, but with so many close elections recently, I think it would be pretty silly to tell your workers that you're as good as back in the majority.

THERE HAVE BEEN a number of criticisms lately of Bush's use of the term "Islamic fascists," notably Pat Buchanan's latest pontification. Bush has been called every name the left could think of, and the U.S. has been demonized by Muslim radicals as "The Great Satan" for at least 27 years, but publish a few cartoons or use or call the terrorists "fascists" (which, as far as I can see is a perfectly good description of how they would govern if they succeed, i.e. as dictators), and the pundits go nuts.

I looked up "fascism" and as far as I can tell it means belief in a dictatorial regime. Further comparisons with the Italian and German governments of the 1930s are really beside the point. It works for me.

If you see a private jet for sale on Ebay . . .

you might want to check this out before you bid.

Hey, don't take Ahmad seriously!

Fareed Zakaria poohpoohs concerns over Admadinejad's threats. How much is he willing to bet?

Steve Knipp has a puff piece about how open and friendly Iranians are to Americans.

Somewhere, I predicted that the Democrats' policy toward Iran will be to convince us that there's nothing wrong with Iran having nukes. I didn't expect it to start this soon.

Forget the birds and bees

Leopard Slugs are the ones to show your kids if you want them to practice abstinence.

Steve Irwin is dead

Tim Blair has a round up of reaction. Irwin, aka The Crocodile Hunter, was famous for his infectious enthusiasm and his catchword, "Crikey!" In one report, his producer is quoted saying "We were in the Cairns, Port Douglas area shooting a documentary for Animal Planet called Ocean's Deadliest, which was basically looking at things that can kill you in the sea." He was swimming over a stingray and it struck him, piercing his heart.

It's terrible news. I think anyone who ever saw his programs on Animal Planet feels that he/she has lost a friend.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Does blogging require booze?

Jeff Goldstein's Report from the Rocky Mountaing blogbash convinced me that I lack one basic ingredient of a hip blogger. I don't drink. I have never been drunk. And I don't think I'd enjoy getting drunk, or dealing with it the next morning.

I do like Protein Wisdom, though.

One thing booze does for one is to give him a sense of bravado, that would probably get me killed. Nothing in my experience has convinced me that I'm missing much, or that I could limit myself to being a merely social drinker.

Can they still burn the flag?

The Iraqi Prime Minister has ordered the Kurds to raise the national flag in their territory. I'd say they should be allowed to fly both flags together.

How can Newsweek call it a "secret" report when it's blabbing it to the whole nation?

With friends like this . . .

The NYTimes is channeling Emily Litella regarding its part in the Plame affair. But some of its columnists are still in denial. Paul Krugman seems to think it was a pretty good thing that the public's faith in the Bush administration's integrity has been damaged, even if it was due to Armitage and Powell. Hey, they're part of the administration too. But how he transfers their lack of honor to Bush, Cheney, Rove and Libby isn't clear. As the WaPo pointed out recently, the ones most to blame for damage to Plame's career are herself and her husband, Joe Wilson. Of course, the Times' publishing of his charges and its demand for a special prosecutor had a lot to do with the magnitude of the fiasco.

Hillary Clinton, Consensus Builder?

The Times of London reports that friends of Hillary are saying she might bail out of the presidential race.
"I would not be surprised if she were to decide that the best contribution she can make to her country is to forget about being president and become a consensus-maker in the Senate," said a leading Democratic party insider. “She believes there is no trust between the two political sides and that we can’t function as a democracy without it.”
Well, she's right about the lack of trust, but I doubt that anybody is going to be able to pry the anti-Bush, anti-war loonies away from their conspiracy theories, their imagined grievances, their suspicion. This is going to have to burn itself out. And if they win back the House, it's going to take longer.

Tony Blair told to Cut and Run

His cabinet ministers want him to quit on a date certain.