Saturday, January 15, 2011

It's pretty easy to claim your theory worked after the event, but AGW needs to show some predictions more accurate than "It's going to get warmer or colder" to be acceptable as science.

Sometimes there just isn't enough news

After Tom Brokaw confessed on Morning Joe that he would be “nervous going into a bar” in Arizona, Bill O’Reilly, like others, made light of it, but did so by joking about Brokaw being shot.
This is just more Arizona bashing, as if the entire state were gunslingers hostile to the rest of the nation. And it IS laughable. Brokaw deserved to be ridiculed for such a statement. The entire left has a bad case of hoplophobia, the irrational fear of armed citizens. Why "irrational?" Because people trained in the use of firearms are not the dangerous wackos like Jared Loughner, but prepared to defend themselves and others, and the fact that guns are too widespread through society to ever be successfully banned means fear of them is like being phobic of automobiles or birds.

Friday, January 14, 2011


I'm hearing now that the Memorial for the victims of the Giffords' shooting was not arranged for by the White House, but by the University of Arizona, which is responsible for the "pep rally" atmosphere. My criticisms of that aspect of the meeting belong to whoever was responsible for setting up the event. This "rally" atmosphere was not what the President expected or wanted, and that's to his credit.

The fact that the MSM has been heavily complicit in the blaming this violence on the tenor of conservative political rhetoric, while failing to mention the irresponsible charges coming from the left, is typical of their behavior over the past 15 years.

I'm glass to see a report on Fox about other House members who have been holding meetings with constituents, defying the danger of a repeat of this shooting.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Palin Receiving Death threats at an Unprecedented Rate

It's probably too soon for any calming from the President's speech tonight, but I wonder how the left will spin it if someone tries to follow through. She might file to run just for the Secret Service protection. It would be interesting to know who amongst celebrities and politicians gets the most death threats and how many attempts get foiled. What percentage of death threats result in attempts to carry them out?

Also, I wonder why Palin gets this much attenton form liberals. She hasn't declared as a candidat. I'd like her to gain more experience before running, but even if she announces, there are several other who shel'd have to beat in the primaries. But she seems to strike fear in the hearts of progressives.

I missed President Obama's speech, but the comments seem to agree that he kept it from becoming political, including giving a rebuke to those who have been blaming this on conservatives' "climate of hate." Will it be a turning point for Obama's political fortunes? I'm watching the Fox News follow-up and the response seems to be unanimous that he gave a superb speech.

Watching the clips and rebroadcast, however, it seems as if a lot of those in the hall, were there for some kind of pep rally. The cheering when he entered the hall and during the speechs struck me as unseemly for a memorial for the dead, and while his words were appropriate, the manner in which he responded to the cheering, raising his voice and repeating his applause line, seemed out of tune with the examples we've seen of Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and President Reagan. There didn't seem to be a tone of reverence and sorrow. I couldn't help wondering if the advance team had been preparing for a campaign rally instead of a solemn remembrance. I wonder how many applause breaks there were in the Gettysburg Address.

There is much to be grateful for in the aftermath of this maniacal act, especially from the medical reports about Representative Giffords' progress, but when six people were killed, it seems odd to respond to the remarks with cheers like it was a political event, or to deliver them in the loud cadences of a stump speech. I hope that wasn't how it was set up, but I doubt that the people of Tucson in general aren't this crass.

I also hope this speech will put an end to the attempts to politicize this horror. Sarah Palin has made a dignified statement, as well, but it was met with more of the same fault finding by the snobs in the news media. I hope and pray for the recovery of those who still suffer from this crime. Politics will resume, if it ever paused, but nobody should mention it again in connection with our political debates. This tragedy transcends politics and those who seek to coopt it for anything partisan are contemptible. The news media probably will be too dense to understand that, and further spin will receive response from conservatives. But I hope that I can remember my own and President Obama's advice.


ABC's The Note blog:
BOTTOM LINE: Sarah Palin, once again, has found a way to become part of the story. And she may well face further criticism for the timing and scope of her remarks. She is already taking heat for her use of the term "blood libel" ...

The New York Times For Boehner, Rampage Imposes Its Own Agenda. Anybody normal would have simply said Speaker Boehner postpones politics in respect for wounded House member. But this had to be given a snarky political spin, making it sound as if he considered it an irritation.

The WaPo On Faith Column:
'Blood libel,' social sin and Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin released a nearly eight-minute video Wednesday morning that says that those who imply she bears some responsibility for the tragic shootings in Arizona are guilty of "blood libel," a loaded phrase that dates to the Middle Ages and has deep and painful connotations for Jews.
I've been hearing the term "blood libel" more frequently lately, mostly in the sense of the myth about Jews, but I wasn't aware that it was copyrighted. Here's Alan Derschowitz' opinion of that: "There is nothing improper and certainly nothing anti-Semitic in Sarah Palin using the term to characterize what she reasonably believes are false accusations that her words or images may have caused a mentally disturbed individual to kill and maim."

Don't get me wrong. I'm as shocked and saddened by the shootings in Tucson as anybody. I'm even more shocked that so many liberals immediately leapt on it as another chance to denounce Sarah Palin, although by now I shouldn't be. Actually, since everybody agrees that this was a senseless attack, why should it be laid at the feet of Sarah Palin or anybody else? Nevertheless, no sooner did she respond to all the furor than she was criticized for "inserting herself into the controversy," and attacked for using the phrase "blood libel." Heads, they win; tails, she loses.

Some people can't separate the political from everything else. Remember the memorial for Paul Wellstone?

What lead to this post was the recurrent thought that life is filled with senseless violence and suffering. The deaths in Tucson are no more senseless than the thousands that occur in traffic accidents after a snow storm or following natural disasters like the flooding in Australia. Every death, especially those as sudden and tragic as these, brings pain and sorrow to someone and evokes sympathy and sorrow from decent people. But life has never been free from senseless pain and suffering. One can be riding high one moment and reduced to nothing the next. We all understand that in our reflective moments and unless we've been dehumanized somehow we know that there but for the grace of God, go we.

Maybe Bill Clinton was right.

Especially about the unhinged. But there's still nothing to show that Jared Loughner was driven to kill people because of anything other than his own paranoid schizophrenia.

Bowling for Soup

I just found this video after the song was played on Fox Business going into a break. Talk about identifying with a song. High school never ends. You can flee but you can't hide.


I just started watching the ESPN 30 for 30 film, June 17, 1994, and there's a shot of Keith Olbermann looking for all the world like Groucho Marx.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I just heard that 9 people have died from weather related accidents during the blizzard in the Southeast which is now moving up the coast from the Carolinas. That death toll is bound to increase. Fortunately, I see no way for Paul Krugman to attribute these senseless deaths to conservative rhetoric.

It seems to me that being concerned about the looming bankruptcy of the United States and exasperated by the apparent unconcern by our leaders is not vitriolic or hatred, but when those people ignore you, belittle you and accuse you of fomenting violence and hate, it's perfectly human to lose patience. Conservative leaders, commentators and activists have every right to advocate the defeat of liberals and a drastic change in the direction of federal power and spending. That doesn't make them haters, even if they are very angry.

What we are seeing is sophistry, the ad hominem attack which argues that one's opponents are bad people and therefore their position should be rejected. A modern spin is the reverse ad hominem which accuses ones opponents of using "hate speech" thereby making them bad people whose positions should be rejected. The "climate of hate" argument isn't new. It's just egotism run amok.

James Jay Carafano's reviews the danger of government overspending from Ike's warning about the military-industrial complex to our current impending fiscal disaster.

The Economist has a piece decrying "Krugman's Toxic Rhetoric." The "climate of hate" accusations are not persuading anybody. Sarah Palin didn't tell anybody to shoot Democrats and this kid Loughner wasn't paying any attention to Palin, the Tea Party or anybody but Representative Giffords, and then she was just a prop for his insane melodrama, but absence of proof hasn't stopped the fever swamp left from spewing its own overblown, hate filled rhetoric.

This crisis is artificial. Contention has always been with us, but those decrying a "climate of hate" are guilty of stoking that climate and are becoming shriller now that they're losing the argument. It's a dishonest and cowardly way to change the subject.

Monday, January 10, 2011

John Steele Gordon: If You Can't Stand the Heat . . .
Harry Truman would have had little patience for the notion that caustic political rhetoric causes murder.

The current crop of Democrats are acting like a bunch of whiners. If you want to lead the world and it's greatest nation, you'd better suck it up and lead, instead of being lead around by the media and campaign advisers and complaining like tattle-tales. If you can't take it, don't dish it out, and by the way, get out of the kitchen.
The truth is that American political rhetoric has always been vigorous and often vituperative. Over 60 years ago Harry Truman offered his famous admonition to get out of the kitchen if you can't stand the heat. Lyndon Johnson, in the sad later years of his presidency, was regularly hanged in effigy (as was Sarah Palin in the 2008 presidential campaign, by the way.) "Hey, hey, LBJ! How many kids have you killed today?" was shouted by demonstrators wherever he went. Johnson complained about the press that, "If I walked on water, the headline the next day would be 'President Can't Swim.'"
And so on. Read the whole thing.


Great game! I bow to the SEC, Auburn and the Heisman winner, Cam Newton. And not unhappily, I must say.

Coincidentally, I was reading Kipling's poem, The Ballad of East and West
Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the two shall meet,
Till Earth and Sky stand presently at God’s great Judgment Seat;
But there is neither East nor West, Border, nor Breed, nor Birth,
When two strong men stand face to face, tho’ they come from the ends of the earth.

Trying to put the toothpaste back into the tube known for hateful, over-the-top rhetoric, is claiming to be against vitriolic rhetoric. They must realize that they're losing the fight. Now they're trying to pivot to the role of wounded innocents.

Check out Loughner's mug shot.

Nope, nothing to be alarmed about there. I think that people are intimidated from reporting scary types like this. Nobody wants trouble, and that's what you could be in for if you make a report. What if you're wrong and he's not a psycho? His best friend knew he had a screw loose, but what if the reported him and the cops showed up. Who's he going to come after then?

I look at the photos of Rep. Giffords and that sweet 9 year old girl and it makes my heart sore for all the senseless suffering and grief, while this deranged failure exults in his moment of fame. We'll try him and probably ship him off to a prison somewhere for the rest of his miserable life.

Obama will now try to replicate Bill Clinton's galvanizing speech after the OK City bombing, which seems to be central to the hopes of of the left and his campaign, but they made a big mistake by talking about how he needed a tragic event like this. Now it will only look cynical, pathetic and ugly. And the left will amp up its rage. Conservatives don't really need to respond except to point out the emptiness underlying the charges from the Krugmans of the world. Stay positive. There is hope in the world. It just doesn't come from more government.

Conservatives are having a ball on Twitter with a #newtone hashtag, mocking all the nonsense from Democrats about the "climate of hate." Sample from Iowahawk: Johnny Cash rewrite, "I hugged a man in Reno, just to watch him smile." "The first rule of snuggle club is don't talk about snuggle club."

Someone had a suggestion that the Oakland football team be changed to the "Trading Partners." They're pouring in too fast to keep up with. Iowhahawk again: "Non-Critically Injuring Me Softly With His Song"

But some, like Dave Weigel are complaining that we're making fun of a serious tragedy. No, Dave, we're making fun of the asinine response from the left trying to tie this hideous event to the robust political arguments from the right, particularly to Sarah Palin.

Maybe we need laws against improper grammar, whatever Loughner meant by that.

The liberal meme of the moment is "Climate of Hate." They apparently have taken a breather from hate to abhor it from the right, particularly from the tea party movement, which has never committed a single act of violence I know of. Apparently, they want to demonize the tea parties so badly that anything will serve to promote their narrative.

Byron York gets to the heart of what's happening:
Journalists urged caution after Ft. Hood, now race to blame Palin after Arizona shootings.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

The New York Times libels the entire state of Arizona. Thanks for contributing to the level of civility, guys.

Piers Corbyn has been predicting harsh cold in North America and today blizzards are hitting in the Southeastern U.S.

George Packer in The New Yorker acknowledges that Jared Loughner's mental illness is the source of the killings in Tucson, but implies nevertheless that those on the right are the the only irresponsible ones in politics. Does this guy ever read The Daily Kos or The Democratic Underground? How about reading some of the twitters yesterday saying that Sarah Palin has blood on her hands, even though there's no evidence whatsoever that Loughner was influenced by her or any other conservatives. His main gripe seemed to be with the Pima Community College.

This is why I don't waste my time with these morons. I'd rather confront the overzealous one on the right than be brainwashed by the left. Polarization takes two; otherwise it's just marginalization, and hate is corrosive and begets more hatred.

Jack Shafer knocks down all the nonsense that this had anything to use with crosshair symbols or bullseyes or any kind of political rhetoric. Loughner is not Tim McVeigh. Sorry folks.