Saturday, May 31, 2008

Going Out In Style

Only in England: Tube drinks party sparks mayhem

Thousands of people have marked the banning of alcohol on London transport with a party that ended with arrests, assaults and cancelled trains.

Drinkers, many in fancy dress, gathered on Tube trains and station concourses in a last celebration before the ban came into force at midnight.

But police said what should have been a fun event came to an "unfortunate" end.

Six Tube stations were closed, while police made 17 arrests. Six assaults were reported on Tube staff and police.

There were also numerous reports of damage to Tube trains, which led to suspended services.

I've been to London, but I have to admit the first thing I said when I read this story was, "You could drink on the Tube? Really?"

Luckily, British folk from everywhere were ready to send the old tradition out with a little class:

Peter Moore, 35, a sailor from Brighton, said he had downed a can of beer in 10 seconds. "It's sweaty on there, but I'm going round and round until I vomit," he said.

It's the sort of thing that would bring a tear to Peter O'Toole's eye.

Out With The "Chicago" Way

There is a bipartisan effort on way in Illinois to curb the rampant corruption of the executive branch. Good on 'em: Bill a slap at Blagojevich

In a scathing, bipartisan slap at Gov. Rod Blagojevich, the Illinois Legislature today unanimously sent him a bill to outlaw a controversial method of fundraising that has brought him millions of campaign dollars, and all but dared him to veto it.

``We need to send him a very strong message . . . that we’re taking the government back,’’ said state Rep. Jack Franks, D-Woodstock, before the House unanimously voted to prohibit campaign contributions from state contractors to the elected officials who hold their contracts. ``We have to end the cycle of corruption. We have to end government-by-cronyism.’’

The bill would prohibit entities holding more than $50,000 in state contracts from giving political donations to the elected officials who sign their contracts. It would go into effect Jan. 1.

The Senate had earlier unanimously passed the bill, meaning it now goes to Blagojevich.

The Democratic governor has previously hinted he might veto the bill on grounds that its reforms don’t go far enough. His critics say that’s an excuse to preserve a form of campaign fundraising that he has employed more successfully than most. Blagojevich’s record-setting fundraising has come largely through millions of dollars in contributions from hundreds of state contractors whose contracts were awarded or maintained by his administration.

It is amazing that Blagojevich has almost stopped trying not to seem corrupt anymore. No one believes him and he knows it.

Friday, May 30, 2008


How badly is Obama doing right now? Wisconsin looks more and more like a knock down, drag out fight all the time. That would be fine for the Democrats were this, say, 1999 or even 2003, but during a time of Democratic ascendency this is pretty dire.

Obama is a Democratic more ways than one.

The Very Definition Of "Not Getting It"

Some, I'll be charitable and call them "observers" are attempting to say that this:

is the equivalent of this:

Just another reason why Obama is heading for an embarrassing loss in November.


You know, you can read a lot of stuff on the web that is ill considered or poorly worded. However, there are other times you read stuff where folks say exactly what they mean, but shouldn't have. Case in point from Michael Kinsley: Don't Link Obama to Former Radicals

Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, best known recently as friends of Barack Obama, disappeared in 1969 after two of their colleagues in the Weather Underground died while building a bomb. Ayers and Dohrn spent 11 years setting off bombs and putting out statements threatening violent revolution. They promised to kill innocent Americans and praised the lunatic murderer Charles Manson.


Ayers and Dohrn never posed any real threat to U.S. national security. Their asinine chatter about killing people and their anti-American sloganeering were as ineffective as their bombs. But they did real harm. Their victims were liberals:


But in a bigger way, the joke is on the rest of us. We thought they meant what they said.[emphasis added]

Yeah, I mean how dare they not carry out the murderous plans they talked about.

I mean, liberals expected so much more from them.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Hey Look! Obama's "New" Politics In Action

Thank God Obama is changing the political culture. I'd hate to think it was the same old crapola.

Who The Hell Believes This?

Another advisor has "disappointed" Barack Obama:

Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) said in a statement he was "deeply disappointed" in Father Michael Pfleger, after the priest --in a scene caught on videotape-- mocked Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y) from the pulpit of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago--the home church of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

“As I have traveled this country, I've been impressed not by what divides us, but by all that that unites us. That is why I am deeply disappointed in Father Pfleger's divisive, backward-looking rhetoric, which doesn't reflect the country I see or the desire of people across America to come together in common cause," Obama said in a statement.

Why is it that everyone that Obama has praised as a "force for good" in his past turns out to be a freakin' lunatic? How did they ever impress Obama when he claims he never heard a word they said?

For chissakes, the only person from Obama's past that he has gone out front to discredit is his elderly grandmother.

Oh, c'mon.

Tell Me She Didn't

"Hello Mouth, meet Foot. Foot, may I present Mouth?" Pelosi Credits Iran for Surge Success

In an interview yesterday with the San Francisco Chronicle, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi claimed the U.S. troop surge failed to accomplish its goal. She then partially credited the success of the troop surge to “the goodwill of the Iranians,” claiming that they were responsible for ending violence in the southern city of Basra.

This is so dumb, from every possible perspective, that it beggars belief.

A Priest As Moron

Doesn't this guy have a Bishop around to at least attempt to keep the Catholic Church away from such garbage?

When Worlds Collide

I usually keep my blogging activities here strictly separate from my sports blogging over at (Get) A Sporting Life. This isn't merely because of the differences in topics discussed, but also because I try to run a PG shop here (ok, ok...PG-13), while over at GASL I swear like a ballet dancer.

But, I do have a post over there that touches upon the political, so if you have a strong constitution you can check out Bullshit In Washington (Shocking, I Know).

More Suspicions That Sneak

Drezner has a run down on the potential for Al Qaeda's running down: Al Qaeda is losing

Last week, we saw quantitative evidence that terrorist tactics in general -- and Al Qaeda in partcular -- appears to be on the wane.

This week, there's some qualitative evidence that Al Qaeda is losing, and losing badly, among its core constituency -- Muslims sympathetic to the cause of jihad.

Do Democrats still want to surrender?

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Career Plagiarist Dislikes Bloggers

Evidently bloggers don't steal other people's work enough to suit the tastes of Mike Barnicle.

It amazes me that a profession populated by so many people with journalism "degrees" can be so full of itself.

Want to impress me? Go back to school and get a degree in a real major.

A Sneaking Suspicion

I suspect we have recently won the war in Iraq.

Alright, who wants to stand up and lose the peace?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

"He's Making It Up As He Goes Along!"

Ace Of Spades seemed to pick up on it first: Obama rewrites WWII history

In one of his more egregious and easily demonstrated lies, made even more so by the day he decided to let it loose on, Obama has rewritten WWII history such that the allies liberated Auschwitz.

...Obama also spoke about his uncle, who was part of the American brigade that helped to liberate Auschwitz...

Auschwitz of course is in Poland. It was liberated by the Red Army on Jan 27 1945. Poland, on most maps is usually placed to the east of Germany, although we may need to investigate the geography textbooks the Messiah used as a child...

The Allies were wrapping up the battle of the bulge in late January of 1945 -- the Rhine crossings were still well into the future when Auschwitz was liberated. The first, the Remagen railway bridge which was discovered intact, was crossed on March 7 1945.

This would be easy to chalk up as yet another case of the dreaded "misspeak" if it were not for the fact that Obama had done it before. Here is Obama's speech against going to war with Iraq:

My grandfather signed up for a war the day after Pearl Harbor was bombed, fought in Patton's army. He saw the dead and dying across the fields of Europe; he heard the stories of fellow troops who first entered Auschwitz and Treblinka.

As Newsmax put it back in April:

All this would be great if it weren't pure fiction. For starters, the Nazis destroyed the Treblinka death camp in 1943 after shooting the last prisoners, a group of Jewish girls.

Then there is the problem of the locations of Treblinka and Auschwitz. Both Nazi death camps were located inside Poland. Thus, no American troops ever entered the camps until years after the war was over.

Auschwitz was taken by the Soviet Union after the Nazis evacuated most of the prisoners. The retreating Nazis left those too weak or sick to walk behind. The 322nd Rifle Division of the Red Army liberated them on Jan. 27 1945.

So unless Obama's Grandfather was working for Joe Stalin, liberating Europe in a Soviet Army uniform, he was not likely to hear stories about Auschwitz or Treblinka from his fellow soldiers.

I hadn't read Obama's Iraq war speech before, but it sure is telling. Here are the first individuals in the Bush administration that Obama critcizes:

What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz and other armchair, weekend warriors in this administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne.

Really, before critcizing Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rove or, even, Bush, Obama mentions Perle and Wolfowitz. Why would he do that I wonder??

Gee, could the answer be what Perle and Wolfowitz have in common with each other that they do not share with Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rove or Bush?

(Pssst...they are both Jewish.)

Kinda makes Obama's attempt to link his family history to the liberation of the death camps even more sickening.

This Is Inspiring?

I know Bush's lack of eloquence may have lowered the bar a bit over the years, but how does one get fired up about stuff like this? Obama says won't guarantee Ahmadinejad a meeting

Obama, the Democratic Party front-runner vying to face Republican Sen. John McCain in the November race for the White House, has said he was willing to meet with leaders of countries such as Iran, Syria, Cuba and Venezuela without preconditions.

McCain has criticized that view, saying that sitting down with someone like Ahmadinejad would give the Iranian president a spotlight and send the wrong signal to U.S. allies such as Israel.

Iran does not recognize Israel's existence and Ahmadinejad has called the country a "stinking corpse."

Obama, an Illinois senator, said Iranian presidential elections in 2009 would be a factor in the timing of any meetings, as would considerations of who wields the power.

"There's no reason why we would necessarily meet with Ahmadinejad before we know that he was actually in power. He's not the most powerful person in Iran," Obama told reporters while campaigning in New Mexico.

Oh, I'm sorry. I thought your saying you will meet with anyone without preconditions was the enunciation a principle, when what it really meant was you will not presuppose the name of the actual leader involved.

Oh, good God almighty.

No Conscience

Turns out in their zeal to defend Barack Obama the main stream media has been libeling erstwhile McCain supporter John Hagee.

Who could have known?

Monday, May 26, 2008

Why Andrew Sullivan Is Intellectually Dishonest

More Andrew the sniveling sycophant:

In his column today he suggests that two Clinton "gaffes" are inventions of the media and/or the Obama campaign. Only when wrested from context is that in any way plausible. In context, the response to what the Clintons were saying both times is perfectly understandable - and the Clinton implication ugly.

O.K., Andy believes Clinton was calling for the assassination of Obama not because of what was actually said, but because of the context. Alright, I'll play along; What was this "context"?

the only way for Clinton to win is for something quite dramatic to take Obama out of the race.

You mean like having a majority of delegates at a Democratic convention vote for someone else? Yeah, that sounds like murder to me.

Oh, and there is more "context":

Clinton's earlier invocation of Lyndon Johnson in order to minimize Obama's potential as an MLK figure.

Again, Krugman doesn't get it. What was offensive about this is not that Johnson wasn't essential. It was the condescension it implied.

Yeah that's right, the lesson to learn there was that the Clinton's are unapologetic racists, and not that the Obama campaign (and their press stooges) will stoop to any slander to achieve their goals.

The implication that just because Obama is black he can be equated with Dr. King is the most pig ignorant and racist garbage that has been voiced this political season. For starters, one doesn't run in an election to become a Dr. King; one lives a life of unwavering dignity and moral exactitude. How has Obama done that exactly? (Short answer: He hasn't.)

You do, however, run in an election to be President, and, yes, the comparison to LBJ is more than appropriate for a politician. But the Clinton's, in the view of Sullivan, had the temerity to ask that Obama be judged as a politician instead of as Dr. King successor.

But the Clinton's are right and Sullivan is wrong. Obama doesn't get to wear the mantle of Dr. King because he hasn't done a damn thing to deserve it.

More Of That Old Time Religion

From Der Spiegel: German Left Wing May Have Ties to Colombian Extremists

According to data found on a laptop confiscated by Colombian authorities, the terrorist group FARC may have had ties to left-wing politicians in Germany. E-mails found on the computer, confiscated after the recent killing of FARC commander Reyes, show that his son visited Berlin.

The Colombian guerrilla group FARC isn't just well connected in the region. According to e-mails found on the laptop of the recently killed FARC commander Raúl Reyes, the group, listed by the European Union as a terrorist organization, also has close ties to the far left in Germany.

Data found on the computer, confiscated following the March bombing raid carried out by Colombia on a guerrilla camp across the border in Ecuador, indicate that Reyes sent his son, Ariel Robespierre Devia, on a secret trip to Berlin in January 2005. It also suggests that while in Germany, Devia, who goes by his alias "Roberto," met with Wolfgang Gehrcke, then a member of the Party of Democratic Socialism (PDS) -- the successor party to the East German Communist party -- and now a member of the German parliament with the Left Party and the party's foreign affairs spokesman.

E-mails on the computer indicate that, according to "Roberto," Gehrcke suggested that the PDS could back a bid in the European Parliament to remove FARC from the list of terrorist organizations. "It was a very positive meeting," "Roberto" wrote. "We were able to solidify a number of points to reactivate the solidarity with the fight of the Colombian people."

"Roberto" also met with representatives of the German Communist Party, and the left-wing daily Junge Welt allegedly offered to assist the FARC publication Resistencia.

In June 2007, the Left Party circulated a proposal that FARC be removed from the European Union's list of terrorist groups.

The indications of ties between FARC and the German far left come as the computer files found on the laptop continue to fuel regional tensions. Based on documents found on the computer's hard drive, Colombia has accused Venezuela of having close ties to FARC and of supporting the organization. In response, Venezuela accused Bogotá of having manipulated the computers -- though the international law enforcement agency Interpol has since confirmed the authenticity of the Reyes computer.

Maybe they were just planning to form the Third International, because you simply can't have a socialist political party without conspiring with thugs, terrorists and drug traffickers.

This is the reason the failure of the Pelosi Democrats to support Colombia in its battle with FARC is so damning. Combine that with the seeming inability of Barack Obama to remember which is his real policy concerning Chavez and FARC, and which is the one he will own up to in public, and I don't see how anyone could be confident in the direction events would take in the event of a Democratic victory in November.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Obama As Millennialist Aspiration

Please read my latest over at the Crabitat.

It's full of snarky goodness.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

I Think I've Got My IQ Scores From When I Was 11 Around Here Someplace...

...And I need them to show the press and the Obama campaign that I am not retarded, as they obviously believe I am. So, now I'm supposed to believe Hillary Clinton was trolling around asking for someone, anyone to please take a pot shot at Obama so she could get to be the Democratic nominee.

Do I really have to spend a second of my life thinking about such obvious garbage? Really?

Obama and Co. are beginning to make the Brownshirts look like a classy bunch.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Dear Barry

More Iowahawk being Iowahawk:

Dear Barry:

I try to get along with the people in my neighborhood, but sometimes it can be difficult. Take for example my neighbor "Mahmoud." Last weekend while I was seeding my lawn, he drove back and forth slowly in front of my house "flipping the bird" from his minivan, which is painted with pictures of bloody corpses and mushroom clouds and "welcome 12th Imam." Normally I wouldn't have given it a second thought (I get "fingered" by a lot of the neighbors), but lately I've noticed he has been working on some kind of secret project in his garage with really stinky chemicals. Also, I've been getting these constant annoying 3 AM phone calls threatening to kill my kids.

Frankly, I'm sort of worried about the situation, but even the neighbors I get along with tell me I shouldn't jump to conclusions, and not to make a big deal of it. I don't want to make waves, but I also don't want to end up like the Goldbergs who had their house burned down last week. Am I being too much of a "worry wart"? Please help!

Concerned in Northbrook

Dear Concerned:

Misunderstanding and mistrust is a two-way street, and it's important to ask yourself: what did I do to create this situation?

More "sage advice" over at Iowahawk.

"What Liberal Media?"

Patterico points it out: L.A. Times: Gay Marriage Opposed by a Very Narrow 19-Point Margin

The story begins:

By bare majorities, Californians reject the state Supreme Court’s decision to allow same-sex marriages and back a proposed constitutional amendment aimed at the November ballot that would outlaw such unions, a Los Angeles Times/KTLA Poll has found.


Wow. With language like “slimly reject,” “narrowly reject,” “small margin,” and “bare majorities,” this sounds like a real photo finish. Let’s look at the body of the story, to see how narrowly the anti-gay marriage forces are barely squeaking past the opposition.

It turns out that the proposed amendment to ban gay marriage is “was leading 54% to 35% among registered voters.”

Jeez. Only a 19-point difference! That’s certainly a “small margin”! You can’t reject gay marriage more “narrowly” than that!

I think they mean that Californians, who are slim, are rejecting gay marriage by a large margin. Hence, slimly rejecting!

And how did the L.A. Times report Obama's 18 point victory in Oregon?

Obama's big win in Oregon

Oh, I see.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

John Stuart Mill Reaches 500 RPM

"Turning over in his grave" somehow didn't seem strong enough: Teenager faces prosecution for calling Scientology 'cult'

A teenager is facing prosecution for using the word "cult" to describe the Church of Scientology.

The unnamed 15-year-old was served the summons by City of London police when he took part in a peaceful demonstration opposite the London headquarters of the controversial religion.

Officers confiscated a placard with the word "cult" on it from the youth, who is under 18, and a case file has been sent to the Crown Prosecution Service.

A date has not yet been set for him to appear in court.

The decision to issue the summons has angered human rights activists and support groups for the victims of cults.

The incident happened during a protest against the Church of Scientology on May 10. Demonstrators from the anti-Scientology group, Anonymous, who were outside the church's £23m headquarters near St Paul's cathedral, were banned by police from describing Scientology as a cult by police because it was "abusive and insulting".

Writing on an anti-Scientology website, the teenager facing court said: "I brought a sign to the May 10th protest that said: 'Scientology is not a religion, it is a dangerous cult.'

"'Within five minutes of arriving I was told by a member of the police that I was not allowed to use that word, and that the final decision would be made by the inspector."

A policewoman later read him section five of the Public Order Act and "strongly advised" him to remove the sign. The section prohibits signs which have representations or words which are threatening, abusive or insulting.

The teenager refused to back down, quoting a 1984 high court ruling from Mr Justice Latey, in which he described the Church of Scientology as a "cult" which was "corrupt, sinister and dangerous".

After the exchange, a policewoman handed him a court summons and removed his sign.

So when exactly was the flame of human liberty extinguished in Britain? It seems ludicrous that I feel the need to quote John Stuart Mill in this day and age, but it seems we as a civilization have forgotten the important truths he categorized and catalogued:

This, then, is the appropriate region of human liberty. It comprises, first, the inward domain of consciousness; demanding liberty of conscience, in the most comprehensive sense; liberty of thought and feeling; absolute freedom of opinion and sentiment on all subjects, practical or speculative, scientific, moral, or theological. The liberty of expressing and publishing opinions may seem to fall under a different principle, since it belongs to that part of the conduct of an individual which concerns other people; but, being almost of as much importance as the liberty of thought itself, and resting in great part on the same reasons, is practically inseparable from it. Secondly, the principle requires liberty of tastes and pursuits; of framing the plan of our life to suit our own character; of doing as we like, subject to such consequences as may follow; without impediment from our fellow-creatures, so long as what we do does not harm them even though they should think our conduct foolish, perverse, or wrong. Thirdly, from this liberty of each individual, follows the liberty, within the same limits, of combination among individuals; freedom to unite, for any purpose not involving harm to others: the persons combining being supposed to be of full age, and not forced or deceived.

No society in which these liberties are not, on the whole, respected, is free, whatever may be its form of government; and none is completely free in which they do not exist absolute and unqualified. The only freedom which deserves the name, is that of pursuing our own good in our own way, so long as we do not attempt to deprive others of theirs, or impede their efforts to obtain it. Each is the proper guardian of his own health, whether bodily, or mental or spiritual. Mankind are greater gainers by suffering each other to live as seems good to themselves, than by compelling each to live as seems good to the rest.

That today in Great Britain peaceful political protest is being criminalized speaks to how far society can creep away from human rights. It's as if they believe what Britain really needs is a kinder and gentler KGB, Gestapo or Stasi, enforcing "proper" political belief because allowing people to think for themselves is "dangerous to the state."

When Mill says, "No society in which these liberties are not, on the whole, respected, is free, whatever may be its form of government; and none is completely free in which they do not exist absolute and unqualified," he actually means it. Mill could only look at Great Britain today and declare is not a free country.

Is the country that gave the world Locke, Sidney, Bentham, Adam Smith, Wollstonecraft, Burke and Mill really alright with that?

Gleaned from DBKP.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Rep. Pete Stark: An American Embarrassment

You know, they really don't support the troops. Hell, Pete Stark, by all indications, hates the troops.

QandO has the details.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Who Are Obama's PR People?

And why does it look like they did bang up work for Stalin in the 1930's?

Like this:

Or this:

Or (especially) this:

I guess the assumption is the Obama voter demographic is too young and/or naive to recognize what this stuff represents.

Either that or they actually like it. Both prospects are kinda scary.


Tip of the hat.

A Rhetorical Question

How retarded do you have to be to write, "There's no question John McCain is getting a free ride from the mainstream press," and actually believe its true?

(I'm not gonna link to it on the off chance that stupidity can be passed via hyperlinks. If you want to find the original check the 7:30 PM ET, May 19, 2008 page of Memeorandum.)

"If You Don't Support Obama You're A Goddam Racist"

Turns out screaming this sort of garbage isn't the way to win votes. Who would have believed it? Ferraro suggests she may not vote for Obama

Geraldine Ferraro, the outspoken former Democratic vice presidential candidate and a supporter of Hillary Clinton's White House bid, told the New York Times she may not vote for Barack Obama should he be the party's nominee.

Ferraro, a former member of Clinton's finance committee who resigned that post earlier this year after making comments many viewed as racially offensive, also said she thinks the Illinois senator has been "terribly sexist" over the course of the presidential campaign.

The comments appear to underscore the potential difficulty Obama may have courting some women voters in the fall — many of whom have said they feel a solidarity with the New York senator over the barriers Clinton faces in her bid to become the first female president.

The Obama camp has basically come out and called Ferraro a racist. Why on earth should she vote for such a person?

If Ferraro has real guts she will endorse McCain rather than be agnostic in a potential McCain/Obama general election campaign. I've alwys felt the treatment of Ferraro was the most shameful of the many shameful attacks perpetrated by Obama and his band of stormtroopers (or by their MSM stooges.)

The Political Sagacity Of Pop Music

Back in January I made the case that an album by the English group The Holloways signaled a growing antipathy to the governing Labour party in Britain. Today Power Line reports:

The United Kingdom represents an interesting parallel to what is happening in our election season. In the U.K., the Labour party has been in power since 1997, when Tony Blair crushed John Major. British voters are now heartily sick of the Labourites, and recent polls show the Conservative Party leading Labour by twenty points, with the Tories at 45%, Labour at 25%, and the Liberal Democrats at 18%. Nearly all observers expect the Tories to sweep to victory when Prime Minister Gordon Brown is finally forced to call an election.

The Prime Minister's personal standing is even worse than his party's, with 17% approving his performance and 78% disapproving--a worse showing than Neville Chamberlain in 1940! The Conservative Party leader, in contrast, has a net 33% positive favorability rating.


Somebody Tell Obama: The Pursuit Of Happiness Actually Means Something

Here is Obama at the Nuremberg...I'm sorry I mean Portland Rally:

"We can't drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times ... and then just expect that other countries are going to say OK," Obama said.

"That's not leadership. That's not going to happen," he added.

If Obama thinks he is going to tell me what I can drive, what and how much I'm allowed to eat, or how warm I can keep my home, he's in for a rude awakening.

Obama may be a Democrat, but he's no democrat.

(Gleaned from Jim Rose.)

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Welcome To The Climate Change Shake Down

So sadly true to form its funny: Anger over climate change loans

Development campaigners have accused the UK government of making a stealth cut to an £800m fund designed to help poor countries adapt to climate change.

Ministers said they were proud to have set a moral lead when the Environmental Transformation Fund was launched.

The government now says an unspecified amount will go out as interest-free loans but insists it never pledged all the money would be used as aid.

One campaign group attacked the loan element of the fund as "outrageous".

Yes. How dare them to believe that "development" money might lead to, oh I don't know, maybe development... Enough development so that they might be able to pay back the development loan. The way they talk you would think the money wasn't going to be used for a constructive or profitable purpose.

The International Institute for Environment and Development, based in London, has criticised the decision.

Spokesman Saleem ul-Huq said: "Rich countries like the UK have caused the climate problem and poor countries are predicted to suffer most.

"It is outrageous that the UK is prepared to make poor countries even more heavily indebted trying to combat a problem they did not cause".

Actually, wouldn't the "development" of poorer countries merely cause more of the stuff causing the so-called problem in the first place?

Actually, this is just Lenin's essay on "Imperialism" dressed up for the 21st Century. The big bad capitalist countries are, so we are told, wealthy only at the expense of the poor nations, but instead of embracing economic (and socialistic) nationalism (ala Lenin) we will instead get the rich countries to pay cash outlays to poor countries. Why are so many people still buying into that moldy oldie? It has all the intellectual probity of the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion"...which also, sadly, finds a ready audience these days. As a species we must be getting dumber to be re-embracing such stupidity.

Wow. Now Obama Thinks He's Napoleon

Rumor has it Obama is going nominate himself. Obama to Return to Iowa, Possibly to Claim Victory

Senator Barack Obama has chosen to spend Tuesday night not in Kentucky or Oregon, the two states that will be holding their primaries that day, or even at his home in Chicago. Instead, Mr. Obama’s staff announced on Saturday, he will be returning to Iowa, where he won the Democratic caucuses way back in January and has at least two good reasons to revisit now.

Much more than nostalgia seems to have motivated that decision. If things continue to go as well for Mr. Obama this week as they have so far this month, with a romp in North Carolina, a strong showing in Indiana and daily growth in his support among party superdelegates, he could actually end up with enough pledged delegates to proclaim, without fear of contradiction, that he is now the Democratic nominee for president.

Gee, and here I was thinking on had to get to at least 2025 delegates to win the Democratic nomination. I guess the new motto is "The hell with Democratic (or democratic) niceties. Do you know who I am?"


More evidence the "Anthropogenic Global Warming = Hurricanes" crowd is full of it: 'Fewer hurricanes' as world warms

Hurricanes and tropical storms will become less frequent by the end of the century as a result of climate change, US researchers have suggested.

But the scientists added their data also showed that there would be a "modest increase" in the intensity of these extreme weather events.

The findings are at odds with some other studies, which forecast a greater number of hurricanes in a warmer world.

The researchers' results appear in the journal Nature Geoscience.

The team from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (Noaa) Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) said its findings did not support the notion that human-induced climate change was causing an increase in the number of hurricanes and tropical storms.

Considering that there hasn't been an increase (see here and here for details) in such storms this should come as no surprise. ("But Al Gore said..." Oh, shut up. If you haven't learned by now that particular appeal to "authority" is garbage you are beyond help.)

What is more heartening than this particular study, which is just another in a long line of "what if" computer models (as in "What if we understood perfectly the mechanics of hurricane generation...), is the fact that a base assumption I have been arguing for from day one seems to have won the day.

In a concluding statement, the researchers said that although there was evidence both for and against the existence of a detectable anthropogenic signal in the tropical cyclone climate record, no firm conclusion could be made.

One reason for the uncertainty is the changes in observation methods used to record Atlantic hurricanes - a record that dates back to 1850.

From 1944, air reconnaissance flights were used to monitor tropical storms and hurricanes. This development allowed researchers to monitor a much greater area and not rely on ships' logs and storms reaching land.

And from the late 1960s, satellite technology has been used to monitor and track hurricanes.

Therefore, a reliable record of past hurricane activity only stretches back about 35 years.
[emphasis added]

Since the bulk of, to pick an example, Kerry Emanuel's work is dependent upon hurricane data collection being almost entirely consistent over time (and I can think of few assumptions dumber than that one), this is significant. It means Emanuel (and his ilk) has lost the scientific war. In order for their work to stand they needed researchers to be content in the "Best Track" data as is. Obviously, researchers are more than willing to question the data's limitations.

Here is the money quote from the BBC story:

"The main point that we want to emphasise is that there is no evidence in this study that we are seeing large greenhouse-gas-driven increases in Atlantic hurricane or tropical storm frequencies."

You don't say.

Obama Meets With Agents Of Hezbollah

Obama in the act of appeasing.
Well, that's just $^%#&@^ spiffy: "Jimmy Carter without the rabbits"

On May 14 Barack Obama held a private meeting at Macomb Community College with Hassan Qazwini. Qazwini is the leader of the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn. Debbie Schlussel describes Qazwini as Hezbollah's most important imam and agent in America.

Obama's meeting with Qazwini came to light because of a brief report in the Detroit Free Press (with the photo above) deriving from Qazwini and his mosque. The Obama campaign has not itself posted any news account or press release regarding the meeting on its Obama News page. A Google News search on "Obama Qazwini" shows that news of the meeting has essentially remained a closely guarded secret.

The Free Press account states that the two discussed the presidential election, the Arab-Israeli conflict, and the Iraq war, according to Qazwini. Schlussel asks why "this open anti-Semite and supporter of Israel's annihilation" was afforded the privilege of discussing "the Arab-Israeli conflict" in a private one-on-one meeting with Obama. Perhaps they were discussing what Obama referred to as the "legitimate claims" of Hamas and Hezbollah in his chat with David Brooks.

Obama is an appeaser with lunatics with stated genocidal intentions.

Any Obama supporter who isn't bothered by this kind of crap is simply nuts.

And answer me this: If this wasn't a problem, why keep the meeting a closely held secret? Seems Obama is gutless to boot.

More Stupidity

Now the loony Obama backers say Bush and evangelical Christians are the equivalent of Hitler.


Friday, May 16, 2008


Every time I read a really stupid Fred Kaplan piece, and today's is no exception in the stupidity department, I always think two things. Firstly, I wonder at how he could have procured a PhD in Political Science from MIT; and secondly, I am unsurprised he chose journalism and not a career in academia. Kaplan's writing would never survive peer review of any reasonable standard, even in today's academy.

Here is what passes for "logic" in a Kaplan piece:

Much outrage has been vented over President George W. Bush's May 15 address to the Knesset, where he likened negotiating with Iran or Hamas to appeasing Nazi Germany. His remarks were mendacious in many ways, not only as a dishonest attack on Barack Obama.

But the controversy has distracted attention from another passage in the speech, which highlights a more serious matter—the scandalous inadequacy of this president's foreign policy, the glaring gap between his rhetoric and his behavior, the startling inattention to diplomatic strategy and tactics.
[emphasis added.]

Yeah, Bush is such a rube! Diplomacy is the only way to go! Yeah, diplomacy!

Come on Fred, do that voodoo, that you do. Show us the diplomatic good stuff!

This tendency—his failure to devise tangible goals or carve out a path to meet them—was on display again Friday in Riyadh, where Bush had flown to celebrate the 75th anniversary of formal relations between the United States and Saudi Arabia.

Bush met privately with King Abdullah to plead for expanded oil production and thus lower gas prices. The king brusquely turned him down, just as he turned down a similar request from Bush last January.

Later in the day, the Saudi oil minister, Ali al-Naimi, twisted the knife a few notches further by saying, at a press conference, that his government had already increased production by 20 percent—then added that this move was in response to requests from some 50 customers all over the world, not just from Bush. (In other words, he went out of his way to avoid giving even the impression of doing the United States a favor.)

The Saudi foreign minister, Prince Saud al-Faisal, took another poke at Bush. "The president showed great concern for the impact on the American economy," the prince told the press corps. "We of course sympathize with that." Period. The end.

Believe it or not, Kaplan seems unaware that he has completely undermined the supposed "premise" of his argument. If you are trying to show the vital importance and primacy of diplomacy, why would you present a case that clearly shows the near total inefficacy of diplomatic maneuver? It isn't as if the Bush administration hasn't had to backtrack on plenty of other matters which might have backed up Kaplan.

If we are going to confine ourselves to the larger questions of Hamas and Iran, I do have another question. Can Kaplan name one group, organization or country that has employed genocidal rhetoric in the past who has dropped the whole genocide thing as a result of diplomatic niceties?


I disagree with McCain on a lot of things, but he gets this.


Bush makes statements loudly applauded by Israeli Knesset.

Obama calls said statements "the kind of appalling attack that's divided our country."

Hmmm....There is only one conclusion I could reach from this turn of events; If Obama begins to call himself your friend, be afraid.

A Myopic Academia

Richard John Neuhas, as he so often does, casts an academic's rant in an entirely different light:

Here is a more or less typical alarum pushing the conventional story: Religious crackpots destroy everything. Archaeologist and ancient historian Eric H. Cline doesn’t quite put it that way, but he comes pretty close in a recent call to academic arms. By his reckoning, the sacred discipline of biblical archeology is being desecrated by “amateur enthusiasts” who lack “proper training and credentials” but whose “fantastic claims” find their way to the public by way of “vanity presses, television, and now the Internet.”

According to Cline, the situation has reached crisis proportions. “Biblical archaeologists are suddenly finding themselves in a position similar to the evolutionary biologists fighting intelligent design—an entire parallel version of their field is being driven by religious belief, not research principles.” No doubt there are a lot of crackpots out there, including religious crackpots. But Professor Cline might consider whether the enemies of genuine scholarship are not closer to his academic home; indeed very much at home in his academic home.

G.M. James George’s Stolen Legacy is a fantastical account of ancient history written decades ago and putatively revealing that Western culture hijacked everything from black Africa. It continues to sell briskly and is assigned in college classes as an example of Afrocentric “discourse from the margins.” Nadia Abu El-Haj of Barnard College recently published Facts on the Ground: Archaeological Practice and Territorial Self-Fashioning in Israeli Society. She argues that the modern discipline of biblical archeology is not scientific at all. Rather, it is dominated by—you guessed it—Jews, who use “history” to justify the State of Israel. The book won an award from the Middle East Studies Association, despite the fact that reviews by archaeologists found it amateurish and politically driven.

One wonders why Cline is silent about such threats to the integrity of his discipline. Perhaps, like so many in the academy, he assumes that the crackpots on the left are well-meaning idealists who are, perhaps, a little blinded by their zealous commitment to justice. No need to worry when they win academic awards, get tenure, and gain control over their departments. Better to sally forth against the real enemy: the religious zealots with their vanity presses and dangerous websites.

Neuhas' rather gentle tweaking of Cline in fact makes a damning and, to my mind, unanswerable case against the complacency of the academic left. ("Academic left." Isn't such a phrase redundant these days?) Really, there are only two options open to any academic. You can either A) Support the traditional standards of scholarly inquiry, or B) Measure all research against an arbitrary ideological yard stick.

Too many academics today will loudly proclaim they favor standard "A" when at question is something right-of-center, and protest that standard "B" is the only way to go when that something is left-of-center. The Ward Churchill case was a perfect example of this nonsense. For Churchill's academic supporters, proven instances of plagiarism and academic fraud should not have been how his work was evaluated. Because Churchill espoused "indigenist liberation" he shouldn't be constrained by irrelevancies like "facts" and "non-imaginary historical incidence!" "By Jove, there is a left-wing political agenda to advance here! Sure by any scholarly standard his work is a joke, but man, we do like his politics!"

If Cline was really worried about scholarly standards he should be penning articles condemning the shoddy practices rife within the universities, not outside of them. Yes, outside crackpots need to be taken down a peg, but it is very unlikely they could visit any harm upon the academy really. Only that garbage produced within the colleges and universities can really undermine them, like the puerile work of a Churchill or the "if it's not anti-Semitic itself, you can certainly see it from here" work of a Nadia Abu El-Haj.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

An Unintended Consequence?

The good thing about the Democratic nomination race going on so long is that now the left knows where all the racist Democrats live:

The purple bits represent districts with 65% or more Democratic racists.

Or so I'm told.

Your Musical Interlude XXIII

Today it is Linus of Hollywood with visuals I cobbled together.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

You Know, Oz Never Did Give Nothing To The Tin Man

Very few people on this planet have been as hard on a particular fellow named Obama as I have the last few months, but even my initial reaction was to cut the man some slack for the following exchange:

OK, so he's looked better. It is easy to chalk this one up to the usual high volume of demands placed upon any high profile candidate. And, do not get me wrong, it is easy to chalk it up to that for a damn good reason.

However, given the political climate we are in right now, it does show a marked lack of political savvy. Obama's camp has been dogged for some time with charges of elitism, not to mention the threat of sexism implicit when one is going against the highest profile female candidate in this nation's history. Obama's flippant little comment could be interpreted an example of either or both.

Look at it this way, would Obama have reacted like this had the reporter been from CNN or The New York Times as opposed to a local television station? Also, does it sound like the kind of thing one would say to a male reporter from anywhere?

The question becomes, in this heightened political environment, isn't this exactly the sort of thing you work extra hard to avoid? True, it is but a blip on the radar, but it displays a tin ear to top all tin ears.

The Entitlement Candidate

More morons: Go away you horrible human being


Good God. What is wrong with her? The Clintons and their campaign staff don't give a damn that they are now hurting our electoral chances in the fall against McCain and against the Republicans in Congress. Their campaign isn't happening in some vacuum, and they know it. Our candidates can't fundraise because of her. Obama can't focus on McCain because of her. Obama is wasting money on HER, rather than spending it on McCain, because of her. EMILY's List, and AFSCME, and the American Federation of Teachers and others are wasting their members' money on her now-failed race - money that they could be spending, should be spending, on other real races, races that haven't already lost. She can't win, the math says she lost the nomination, but she doesn't give a damn. She's going to stay in the race like some spoiled hateful egotistical brat.

The depth of stupidity here is breathtaking.

1) Last time I checked you needed 2025 delegates to win the nomination.

2) Last time I checked Obama didn't have 'em.

3) Re-read the above and tell me who comes off as the "spoiled hateful egotistical brat."

4) Speaking of hateful, last time I checked it was Obama supporters who have the name calling thing down pat.

5) A bigger reason the Democrats are going to lose in November is Wile E. Coyote-ish Super Geniuses like dimwit here who believe belittling, denigrating, bullying, and shitting upon roughly half the Democratic electorate represents a "path to victory."

Fundamentally, this is a cry to give Obama the nomination because he, in some mystical way as opposed to an electoral way, deserves it. Obama cannot win it at the ballot box anymore, so he has to make the argument that the party insiders should believe he has the better chance in November. Whining, arrogant, elitist screeds from his supporters don't further that argument, they completely demolish it.

Slate's Interesting Math

I've never seen so many folks having trouble with simple subtraction:

When a stunt man falls from a skyscraper, it's hard not to draw a short breath even if you know he's going to land on a puffy air bag. Barack Obama lost West Virginia by 30 points, which looks like an enormous fall. Clinton was favored to win the state, but Obama is the all-but-named nominee.

Let's see... 67 minus 26 equals????? Thirty????

This new learning amazes me.

Yet Another Reason Barack Obama Will Never Be President

Fundamentally, the worst thing about the Obama campaign is the fact his supporters are simply filled to the brim with moronic drivel. Case in point, this excrementally vile "analysis" offed by Ruben Navarrette Jr.: No racism in the presidential election?

In claiming victory in West Virginia last night, Hillary Clinton reiterated her last best argument as to why she should be the Democratic nominee: because only she can win in November.

Don't confuse that with what Clinton said in a debate just a few weeks ago about how she was confident that either she or her opponent could win in November.

How's that for chutzpah? She's arguing that the same person who couldn't win enough states in the spring against Barack Obama can win enough states in the fall against John McCain.

Oh grow up. Every battle for the presidential nomination there has ever been in the history of this county is at some level an argument about who is more electable in the general election. To believe otherwise displays a shocking level of ignorance and stupidity.

At least in West Virginia, Clinton chose her words more carefully than she did last week when she blurted out to USA Today that "Sen. Obama's support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again" and how whites who had not completed college were supporting her.

Clinton sounded less like George Washington and more like George Wallace. Imagine a presidential primary where, after more than 16 months, almost two dozen debates, hundreds of speeches, millions of dollars, and countless chicken dinners, the rationale for electing someone boils down to this: Vote for me. I'm white. I can win because other whites will vote for me.

It's funny, but for those who constantly decry "code words" at the drop of a hat, they don't mind dishing that sort of crap out themselves. That's right, Clinton's assertion that Obama is having trouble attracting support from working class voters (which is true) and white voters (which is also true), is the equivalent of George Wallace's campaign for a segregated America.

Mr. Navarette have you no shame? And, yes, I mean that with all of it's McCarthyite implications, because the idea that everyone who chooses not to support Obama is a racist, closeted or otherwise, is immoral and deeply antithetical to the premise of a democratic society.

And, let us not be coy here, that is exactly what Navarette means:

Meanwhile, some white Americans are turning themselves inside out to come up with excuses for why they're not supporting Obama.

Yes, by all means let us have an inquisition to sort out this "problem."

Some want to know why it isn't racist when 70 percent of African-Americans vote for Obama but it is when 70 percent of whites vote against him.

The answer has to do with history. Over the decades, black Americans have had plenty of opportunities to vote for white people for president. And they have done so. But this is the first time that white Americans have a chance to vote for an African-American with a shot at the presidency. And what are they doing?

Many are responding quite well. Obama won the votes of many -- to borrow a phrase -- "hardworking white Americans -- in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska and Wyoming. But, elsewhere, as Obama said in a recent interview, people may need to get their head around the concept of an African-American even seeking the presidency, let alone winning it.

See, if you are white and live in Wisconsin you are deemed acceptable by the Inquisition, but if you are white and live elsewhere, like Ohio, Pennsylvania, California, or Rhode Island you must be a racist cracker.

God knows no one could have come to the conclusion that they don't feel like voting for one of the most liberal Senators in Congress, who offers only a thin resume and lots of empty rhetoric, for any other reason than they are racists.

There is a racist here and his name is Ruben Navarette, and don't feed me any post-modern, neo-Marxist, "post-structuralist," bullshit about how that isn't possible. Common human decency is fundamentally a question of, surprise, how we treat our fellow human beings. By that standard Mr. Navarette is decency deficient.

What is truly scary is that this type of garbage will only get worse.


Lookee here! More garbage:

Because of proximity here in Maryland we get occasional exposure to Appalachian stuff. I know it’s not nice to say but as a black man in the 21st century it isn’t exactly a region I think should be having much say about the future of America. And it isn’t.

Remember, he's talking about Democratic voters.

Who is it exactly who would like four years of this?

Your Future?

QandO has an interesting prediction of a McCain/Obama general election showdown.

Here is their electoral map:

I'd say this looks about right, except for South Carolina. I don't think Obama has a prayer there. In 2004 blacks made up 30% of the electorate in the general election. (Exit poll data here.) Now, assuming that McCain would poll among whites similarly to Bush (and I've seen absolutely nothing to make me believe otherwise), and also assuming that Obama would collect 95% of the black vote (a safe assumption I believe), the baseline vote for Obama would be 43.9%. This baseline is better than Kerry did in 2004 as he "only" carried 85% of the black vote. Now, it could be argued that the black vote will be energized by the Obama candidacy and come out in larger numbers. This is true, but when does the weight of the black vote push Obama close enough to 50% to matter?

Well let's see. Using the equation, Obama Vote = (BV*0.95)+((1-BV)*0.22) where BV is equal to the percentage of the black vote you get the following:

% Black Vote: Obama's Total Vote (Predicted)
30% - 43.9%
32% - 45.36%
34% - 46.82%
36% - 48.28%
38% - 49.74%
39% - 50.47%

Obama's problems are twofold: A) It seems unlikely that the percentage of blacks voting in the general election could be increased by a full 30%, and B) All of this assumes that Obama can appeal to whites in South Carolina to the same extent as John Kerry, which given Obama's track record isn't a lead pipe cinch.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

I Guess I Need A New Dictionary...

...because according to my old dictionary something needs to actually "break" a "record" before it could be called "record breaking." Obviously, that's not true anymore:

USA Today leads with word that the more than 20 deaths caused by tornadoes in the United States this weekend pushed an already bad year into record-breaking territory. So far, 98 people have been killed by tornadoes since the beginning of 2008, which makes it the deadliest year thus far since 1998 and the seventh-deadliest since 1950.

Wow, the seventh deadliest of the last 58 years. That would place it in the top 13th percentile.

I'll call the Guinness World Records people.

Just think, all of those kids getting a B+ on a final exam this month can inform their parents and friends that they are in "record breaking territory."

Monday, May 12, 2008

Obama’s 20 Percent Solution

I've got a lengthy post about the election, complete with a snazzy graph, over at the Crabitat.

Do go enjoy.

Friday, May 09, 2008

“All We Have To Fear Is Freedom Itself”

[ed. This was originally posted on Michael van der Galien's old site back in June of2007. This is part of my effort to collect as much of my blog writing in a single place....thus the vanity tag.]

It is a wonder I survived my childhood.

Actually, to judge from the media of today, it is a wonder half of my age cohort didn’t snuff it before they reached the age of 18. After all, I was born in the year 1968, which means I was subject to a myriad of dangers that only haunt the worst nightmares of today’s youth. I survived bike riding, skateboarding, playing football and baseball, all without a helmet; countless hours of unsupervised after-school time; fireworks; Jarts; darts; snowball fights; climbing trees; and Slip-n-Slides. Hell, I even survived contact with Catholic priests.

Obviously, it is some sort of miracle I survived in an uncrippled and unmolested state.

Luckily, we in the Western world live in an age that is systematically doing away with all these potential dangers, just like those posed by sharp kitchen knives.

A&E doctors are calling for a ban on long pointed kitchen knives to reduce deaths from stabbing.

A team from West Middlesex University Hospital said violent crime is on the increase - and kitchen knives are used in as many as half of all stabbings.

They argued many assaults are committed impulsively, prompted by alcohol and drugs, and a kitchen knife often makes an all too available weapon.

The research is published in the British Medical Journal.

The researchers said there was no reason for long pointed knives to be publicly available at all.

They consulted 10 top chefs from around the UK, and found such knives have little practical value in the kitchen.

None of the chefs felt such knives were essential, since the point of a short blade was just as useful when a sharp end was needed.

This is a good first step, but there is still much work to be done. Hopefully, we will move on to secure ourselves from other dangers, like those posed by heavy wooden furniture.

The reasoning is very clear. Why should we allow something like this?

to be used as a chair instead of this?

Why should we allow heavy wooden furniture that could be used as a deadly weapon into our family homes? Just because we have traditionally allowed such shoddy home decorating practices to flourish in the past?! I’m sorry, but we cannot remain bound to these medieval practices. We need new thinking! You might love Aunt Sophie’s mahogany Chesterfield, but, my God, we have children to protect.

Yes, new thinking is what we need. The kind of new thinking that will keep freedom away from us at all costs. The novelist Richard Adams summed up this way of life in his book The Plague Dogs:

Freedom-that consuming goal above doubt or criticism, desired as moths desire the candle or emigrants the distant continent waiting to parch them in its deserts or drive them to madness in its bitter winters! Freedom, that land where rogues, at every corner, cozen with lies and promises the plucky sheep who judged it time to sack the shepherd! Unfurl your banner, Freedom, and call upon me with cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, dulcimer and all kinds of music to fall down and worship you, and I will do so upon the instant, for who would wish to be cast into the fiery furnace of his neighbour’s contempt? I will come to you as the male spider to the female, as the explorer to the upper reaches of the great river upon which he knows he will die before ever he wins through to the estuary. How should I dare refuse your beckoning, queen whose discarded lovers vanish by night, princess whose unsuccessful suitors die at sunset? Would to God we had never encountered you, goddess of thrombosis, insomnia, asthma, duodenal and migraine! For we are free-free to suffer every anguish of deliberation, of decisions which must be made upon suspect information and half-knowledge, every anguish of hindsight and regret, of failure, shame and responsibility for all that we have brought upon ourselves and others: free to struggle, to starve, to demand from all one last, supreme effort to reach where we long to be and, once there, to conclude that it is not, after all, the right place. For a great price obtained I this freedom, to wish to God I had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when I sat by the fleshpots and ate bread to the full. The tyrant wasn’t such a bad old bugger, and even his arbitrary rages never killed as many as died in yesterday’s glorious battle for liberty. Will you return to him, then? Ah no, sweet Freedom, I will slave for you until I have forgotten the love that once consumed my being, until I am grown old and bitter and can no longer see the wood for the starved, dirty trees. Then I will curse you and die; and will you then concede that I may be accounted your loyal follower and a true creature of the earth? And, Freedom, was I free?

Ah! What pathos! We are surrounded by poor deluded fools who believe they want to experience this world, when in reality it has nothing to offer them but pain, corruption and death.

But it need not be that way. We in the West are offered a new vision! It is the beautiful vision of subsistence, where one can be content in what they have because we have taught them there is nothing better to be desired. A vision of a life that offers neither risk nor reward, but only the blissful monotony of continued existence. A vision where you need not tax your mind with deciding how your life will unfold, thus saving you the anxiety that comes from choosing the direction of your days.

It is a vision of safety; safety from guns; safety from knives; safety from wooden furniture; safety from life.

Because let’s face it folks, life will kill you.

Presented Without Comment

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Al Gore, Moral Degenerate

There is no amount of human pain, misery and death that Al Gore will not attempt to benefit from: Al Gore Calls Myanmar Cyclone a 'Consequence' of Global Warming

Using tragedy to advance an agenda has been a strategy for many global warming activists, and it was just a matter of time before someone found a way to tie the recent Myanmar cyclone to global warming.

Former Vice President Al Gore in an interview on NPR’s May 6 “Fresh Air” broadcast did just that. He was interviewed by “Fresh Air” host Terry Gross about the release of his book, “The Assault on Reason,” in paperback.

“And as we’re talking today, Terry, the death count in Myanmar from the cyclone that hit there yesterday has been rising from 15,000 to way on up there to much higher numbers now being speculated,” Gore said. “And last year a catastrophic storm from last fall hit Bangladesh. The year before, the strongest cyclone in more than 50years hit China – and we’re seeing consequences that scientists have long predicted might be associated with continued global warming.”

Gore claimed global warming is forcing ocean temperatures to rise, which is causing storms, including cyclones and hurricanes, to intensify.

Gore is wrong factually, scientifically, and morally.

The scariest part is he knows it.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Is It "The Chicago Way"?

Is the fix in for Barack? Suspiciously, the county in Indiana closest to Chicago (Lake) waits until most of the rest of the state reports before the first vote is "reported."

Looks like 1960 sorta.


The Lake County website is down. Curiouser and curiouser.

The Iconic Midwest Calls Indiana

...for Clinton. The fact this hasn't been done already by the major networks with 25% of the vote in and Clinton ahead by 14% is a joke, especially when North Carolina was called for Obama solely on the basis of exit polls.

PBS = Obama Tools

Clinton has a 14% lead in Indiana and PBS tells us she isn't leading by as much as was expected.

Bullshit. Show me a poll that had Clinton winning in Indiana by substantially greater? You can't, because there hasn't been one.

In fact if Clinton wins by double digits that would be a significant move away from Obama. The goddamn cheerleading by the press for Obama has to stop.

What Legal Standard Is This I Wonder?

Wis. bars who banned drink specials win price-fixing case

The state Supreme Court says Madison bars who agreed to eliminate drink specials are not guilty of an illegal price-fixing conspiracy.

The court refused to reinstate a lawsuit brought by drinkers claiming they were overcharged as a result of the 2002 agreement by bars to stop serving drink specials on weekend nights.

More than 20 bars adopted the voluntary ban to thwart a stricter one the city was considering at the time.

In a 3-1 decision, the court said the bars' actions are immune from state antitrust law since they acted under pressure from city regulators who wanted to crack down on binge drinking.
[emphasis added]

Is this saying "Yes, you broke the law...but you had a REALLY good reason, so it's OK."??????

One wonders what the judges were drinking.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

I Believe The English Call It "Whinging"

Oh, Good Lord: Barack has hit boiling point

Barack Obama is struggling to contain his anger and frustration over the constant barrage of questions about his character and judgment, his wife has revealed.

Michelle Obama lifted the lid on the irritation felt by the leading Democrat candidate for the White House at the way anti-American outbursts by his pastor, Jeremiah Wright, have dogged his campaign.

He is said to be itching to turn all his fire on John McCain, the Republican candidate, who is benefiting most from Mr Obama's protracted tussle with Hillary Clinton.

Mrs Obama told a rally in Durham, North Carolina, on Friday that only her husband's desire to change US politics had helped him to control his feelings...

So much for looking "Presidential".

Michelle Obama told her audience that her husband was 'sick of the battle against Clinton'

Gee, I'm sorry American democracy pisses off Barack so much. How dare we expect him to win the nomination at the ballot box!

News Flash!

Frank Rich discovers that some Protestants don't like Catholics! Wow, what a scoop!

Mr. Rich, I find you new found concern for but I speak for Catholics everywhere when I ask you to please go back to ignoring us.

Is It Sheer Ignorance? God, I Hope So

I know intellectual history isn't everyone's cup of tea, but this is getting stupid:

If you can stomach watching it, you'll see Stein explain, with Hannity and Colmes' help, that "Darwinism" wasn't really responsible for the death camps, and biologists aren't really Nazis, it's just that evolution logically led to ... the Nazi death camps. Stein's two-faced con is on display everywhere you look, here using a quote from the Expelled website itself:

Alas, Darwinism has had a far bloodier life span than Imperialism. Darwinism, perhaps mixed with Imperialism, gave us Social Darwinism, a form of racism so vicious that it countenanced the Holocaust against the Jews and mass murder of many other groups in the name of speeding along the evolutionary process.

Gosh Ben, how could anyone possibly get the mysterious idea that evolution is pro Holocaust?

OK I can understand disliking the simplistic correlation Stein puts forward, but is there really any doubt that "social Darwinism" played an active role in the perpetration of the Holocaust?

The answer to that question is a resounding "no." The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum has an exhibit travelling the country now called "Deadly Medicine" that connects the dots. The first thing to remember is that the roots of the Holocaust lie not in Hitler's warped brain. The underlying pathology pre-date Hitler's political rise:

Following Germany’s defeat in World War I and during the ensuing political and economic crises of the Weimar Republic, ideas known as racial hygiene or eugenics began to inform population policy, public health education, and government-funded research. By keeping the “unfit” alive to reproduce and multiply, eugenics proponents argued, modern medicine and costly welfare programs interfered with natural selection –the concept Charles Darwin applied to the “survival of the fittest” in the animal and plant world. In addition, members of the “fit,” educated classes were marrying later and using birth control methods to limit family size. The result, eugenics advocates believed, was an overall biological “degeneration” of the population. As a solution, they proposed “positive” government policies such as tax credits to foster large, “valuable” families, and “negative” measures, mainly the sterilization of genetic “inferiors.”

Eugenics advocates in Germany included physicians, public health officials, and academics in the biomedical fields, on the political left and right. Serving on government committees and conducting research on heredity, experts warned that if the nation did not produce more fit children, it was headed for extinction. A growing faction, linking eugenics to race, championed the long-headed, fair “Nordics” as “eugenically advantageous” and discussed “race mixing” as a source of biological degeneration. Eugenic ideas were absorbed into the ideology and platform of the nascent Nazi Party during the 1920s.

Thus, the Nazi's didn't originate these ideas, they turned them into a political platform, a platform that had enthusiastic support from much of the scientific community:

Nazism was “applied biology,” stated Hitler deputy Rudolf Hess. During the Third Reich, a politically extreme, antisemitic variation of eugenics determined the course of state policy. Hitler’s regime touted the “Nordic race” as its eugenic ideal and attempted to mold Germany into a cohesive national community that excluded anyone deemed hereditarily “less valuable” or “racially foreign.” Public health measures to control reproduction and marriage aimed at strengthening the “national body” by eliminating biologically threatening genes from the population. Many German physicians and scientists who had supported racial hygiene ideas before 1933 embraced the new regime’s emphasis on biology and heredity, the new career opportunities, and the additional funding for research.

On July 14, 1933, the Nazi dictatorship fulfilled the long-held dreams of eugenics proponents by enacting the Law for the Prevention of Genetically Diseased Offspring, based on a voluntary sterilization law drafted by Prussian health officials in 1932. The new Nazi law was coauthored by Falk Ruttke, a lawyer, Arthur Gütt, a physician and director of public health affairs, and Ernst Rüdin, a psychiatrist and early leader of the German racial hygiene movement. Individuals who were subject to the law were those men and women who “suffered” from any of nine conditions assumed to be hereditary: feeblemindedness, schizophrenia, manic-depressive disorder, genetic epilepsy, Huntington’s chorea (a fatal form of dementia), genetic blindness, genetic deafness, severe physical deformity, and chronic alcoholism.

Special hereditary health courts lent an aura of due process to the sterilization measure, but the decision to sterilize was generally routine. Nearly all better-known geneticists, psychiatrists, and anthropologists sat on such courts at one time or another, mandating the sterilizations of an estimated 400,000 Germans. Vasectomy was the usual sterilization method for men, and for women, tubal ligation, an invasive procedure that resulted in the deaths of hundreds of women.

International reaction to the Nazi sterilization law varied. In the United States, some newspaper editors noted the mass scale of the policy and feared that “Hitlerites” would apply the law to Jews and political opponents. In contrast, American eugenicists viewed the law as the logical development of earlier thinking by Germany’s “best specialists” and not as “the hasty improvisation of the Hitler regime.”

In his 1934 book, American eugenicist Leon Whitney wrote: “Many farsighted men and women in both England and America have long been working earnestly toward something very like what Hitler has now made compulsory.”

It amazes and saddens me that I felt the need to write this post. The historical record is clear, so I'm uncertain what political advantage people believe they are gaining by trying to muddy it. There is no "war against science" whatever the hysterical or bigoted try to tell us all. And, there is nothing wrong with noting that, yes, science too has a dark side. Those who wish to deify the scientific endeavor into something akin to the Platonic "Good" are profoundly misunderstanding it.

Science does not sit above moral standards, and it is not the source of such standards. It is open to criticism and it has at times been blameworthy. The best science flourishes because of these facts not despite them, and we do it (and ourselves) a disservice by trying to pretend otherwise.

Friday, May 02, 2008

The Politics Of Personal Destruction

I know the presidential nomination campaign among the Democrats has been a closely contested affair, but does it really make sense for Obama backers to slander/libel Mickey Kantor?

A former aide to President Bill Clinton, and current informal adviser to Sen. Hillary Clinton, expressed outrage and shock on Friday after a videotape from 1992 surfaced allegedly showing him describing Indianans as "white n---rs."

Mickey Kantor, who served as campaign chairman during Clinton's 1992 run for the White House and says he has offered help and advice to Sen. Clinton, insisted that the tape was a fraud and that he was exploring legal steps against the individual who posted it online.

"I've never used that word in my entire life, ever, under any circumstance, ever," an angry Kantor told The Huffington Post, citing his and his parent's work fighting for civil rights. "I have listened to [the video] and so have you. You can't tell what it is I'm saying in that second sentence, you can't decipher that."

Indeed, a review of the original copy of the 1993 film The War Room, from which the excerpt was taken (around the 4:40 mark) is virtually inaudible. The sound suggests, if anything, that instead of saying "How would you like to be a worthless white n****r?" Kantor says, "How would you like to be in the White House right now?"

The director of the film, moreover, says that Kantor never uttered those words. "He does not say that. He does not say that," D.A. Pennebaker told Ben Smith.

The cropped video, which spread through the Internet like wildfire on Friday morning, shows Kantor with fellow former Bill Clinton staffers James Carville and George Stephanopoulos discussing results from the general election. In the footage, Kantor approaches the two aides and says, "Look at Indiana -- wait, wait, look at Indiana. 42-40. It doesn't matter if we win, those people are shit." That much seems true, though Pennebaker says Kantor was referring to the George H.W. Bush White House. The alleged "white n****r" line followed.

More from Ben Smith:

"He does not say that. He does not say that," said Pennebaker, after viewing the clip.

He said the initial expletive referred to the anticipated reaction in the Bush White House to the fact that Ross Perot's polling numbers were holding strong.

"What he says is he’s surprised Perot’s numbers are holding," said Pennebaker in a brief phone interview. "He says they must be shi**ing in the White House."

The second expletive, he said, appeared to have been entirely fabricated, with new audio dubbed onto the original movie.

Given the context of the clip (this is the undoctored original - the at question portion is at around the 5:00 mark), it seems unlikely Kantor would have used any such language.

I've always said the only thing worse than Obama is his supporters. I hope this particular moron gets sued blue.


I must say that the usual slew of pro-Obama blogs who jumped all over this when it was first posted on YouTube have shown themselves to be nothing but cowards by removing their original posts.

Be adult. Own up to your stupidities.

Barack Obama, Leftist

Says who? Says Pew: Obama's Image Slips, His Lead Over Clinton Disappears

McCain Seen as More Centrist

For his part, McCain runs better in the general election tests against both Democratic candidates among college graduates and white men. More generally, the current poll finds that McCain's competitiveness against both Democrats is buttressed by the fact that voters continue to see him as a centrist whose views are fairly close to their own, and less conservative than George W. Bush's. In contrast, voters place both Clinton and Obama considerably to the left of where they place themselves. These ideological perceptions of the candidates have changed little over the past three months.

Count me as unsurprised.

Although I did think Obama might have been able to convince more people that Clinton was to the left of him. I don't think she is to the left of Obama, but for a good long while, until the last few weeks really, the press has tried to portray Obama as some sort of centrist. Not very many people seem to be buying that fairy tale.

We ain't as dumb as we look! Who knew?

(Gleaned from American Future.)

The New Wright: Same As The Old Wright

Charles Krauthammer covers some of the same ground I did earlier in the week (only in more column inches): The 'Race' Speech Revisited

"I can no more disown him [Jeremiah Wright] than I can disown my white grandmother."

-- Barack Obama, Philadelphia, March 18

Guess it's time to disown Granny, if Obama's famous Philadelphia "race" speech is to be believed. Of course, the speech was not just believed. It was hailed, celebrated, canonized as the greatest pronouncement on race in America since Lincoln at Cooper Union. A New York Times columnist said it "should be required reading in classrooms across the country." College seniors and first-graders, suggested the excitable Chris Matthews.

Apparently there's been a curriculum change. On Tuesday, the good senator begged to extend and revise his previous remarks on race. Moral equivalence between Grandma and Wright is now, as the Nixon administration used to say, inoperative. Poor Geraldine Ferraro, thrice lashed by Obama in Philadelphia as the white equivalent of Wright's raving racism, is off the hook.

These equivalences having been revealed as the cheap rhetorical tricks they always were, Obama has now decided that the man he simply could not banish because he had become part of Obama himself is, mirabile dictu, surgically excised.

At a news conference in North Carolina, Obama explained why he finally decided to do the deed. Apparently, Wright's latest comments -- Obama cited three in particular -- were so shockingly "divisive and destructive" that he had to renounce the man, not just the words.

What were Obama's three citations? Wright's claim that AIDS was invented by the U.S. government to commit genocide. His praise of Louis Farrakhan as a great man. And his blaming Sept. 11 on American "terrorism."

But these comments are not new. These were precisely the outrages that prompted the initial furor when the Wright tapes emerged seven weeks ago. Obama decided to cut off Wright not because Wright's words or character or views had suddenly changed. The only thing that changed was the venue in which Wright chose to display them -- live on national TV at the National Press Club. That unfortunate choice destroyed Obama's Philadelphia pretense that this "endless loop" of sermon excerpts being shown on "television sets and YouTube" had been taken out of context.

I was never a fan of the Philadelphia speech, which I termed "craven" two days after the fact. It's inadequacies were obvious (if one was interested in looking for them), and it isn't surprising, to myself at least, that it was exactly this attempt to "contextualize" Wright that would fail so miserably. As I said back in March:

Way too much time and energy was spent giving excuses for Wright's hate. There is no context which could make it understandable or excusable. In this Obama is hardly alone, as it a common weakness inherent in the liberal Democratic penchant for victimhood. The truth is hate is hate regardless of context. Imagine a Republican candidate who had an active member of the KKK as a "spiritual advisor". Now, do you think anyone would listen for a second to attempts to "contextualize" that person's views? Of course not, and nor should they.

It's a month and a half later and none of that has changed.

What has changed is the way the American people are viewing Obama in the light of this debacle. 58% Say Obama Denounced Wright for Political Convenience, not Outrage

A Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey found that just 30% of the nation’s Likely Voters believe Barack Obama denounced his former Pastor, Jeremiah Wright, because he was outraged. Most—58%--say he denounced the Pastor for political convenience. The survey was conducted on Wednesday and Thursday night. Obama made his statements about Wright on Tuesday.

Wright held a mini-media tour last weekend capped by a press conference at the National Press Club on Monday. Only 33% of voters believe that Obama was surprised by the views Wright expressed at Monday’s press conference. Fifty-two percent (52%) say he was not surprised.

Of course not! If the average voter isn't surprised that Wright actually holds the opinions he's been spouting for years, how can Obama claim to be surprised?

Fundamentally, Obama was trying to sell us all on the idea it was all a matter of inflection. I'm sorry but when it comes to "God damn America" and "the US government created AIDS to kill blacks" it is most assuredly a matter of what Wright said, not how he said it. Obama must have the political tin ear to beat all tin ears to have believed otherwise.