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12/12/2004
BLOGWISDOM
CATEGORY: General

Another trip down the blogroll. Let’s see what some of the “newbies” are doing.

Beautiful Atrocities is “outraged.” The amazing thing about this fantastic parody of “The Today Show” is that, like all good satire, it has the ring of truth. The fact that the reporter who fed the lack of armor question to Secretary Rumsfeld felt he had “his best day as a journalist”—even though as Bill at INDC points out it would be a stretch to call what he did “journalism,”—the reaction by Democrats and war critics has been both predictable and lame. This “gotcha” mentality may, in fact be harming the war effort according to LGF’s Charles Johnson.

The question I’d have for that reporter and indeed for many in the national press would be “How much do you think about reporting information that could result in American casualties?” Did, as Johnson’s post point out, 65 straight days of coverage of the Abu Gahraib prison scandal radicalize some segments of the Iraqi population against the Americans? In their partisan zeal to defeat the President, did some reporters cross the line and become advocates not for a political opposition but for the battlefield enemies of our soldiers?

Satire gets you thinking, doesn’t it?

The Carnivorous Conservative is photoblogging here and here. The Air Force testimony reminds me of a series of “photoshop” pictures in “Hustler” Magazine years ago that had Senators from BOTH parties doing commentaries on Anita Hill’s titillating testimony before the Judiciary Committee during the Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings. Ted Kennedy was a lout then…he’s a lout now.

David Earney is blogging the weather…in Baghdad. He’s also spot on with his analysis of Bush’s endorsement of Kofi Annan:

“There is no way to make the UN a fairly elected body, but empowering the institution and actually having a UN that is capable of really accomplishing things scares the hell out of me.”

David’s thought is that Kofi and the whole gang of incompetent boobs who currently run the UN bureaucracy are actually less of a threat than someone who could say, be an effective spokesman for the Security Council.

Amen to that.

Digger has some choice thoughts on the Kerik imbroglio.

“I think the man is qualified for the position of Director of Homeland Security, but I also have a twinge of happiness in this occurring. People care about this illegal alien problem we have and I’m happy to see people paying for their hiring of these individuals.”

I agree. The immigration issue, to me, is not about race…it’s about sovereignty. If there is one definition of sovereignty accepted the world over it has to be a nation’s right to defensible borders. When people pour over those borders as if they weren’t there, that damages our sovereignty and cripples our ability to defend ourselves.

My fear is that we won’t develop the political courage to address this problem until terrorists slip over the border and devastate an American city. The opponents of immigration reform should realize once that happens, the current proposals will seem like mild palliatives compared to the draconian measures sure to follow on the heels of a terrorist attack.

Iowahawk is channeling Jesse Jackson and charging vote fraud in Wizbang’s Weblog Awards.

A sample of the Reverend’s oratory:

“Reverend Iowahawk contacted me soon after the evidence of impropriety began. He explained the many problems and irregularities being reported. He assured me his check would clear. I decided I must be involved.”

With the Reverend on the case, I have no doubt we’ll get to the bottom of it.

Rightwingsparkle has a different take on immigration reform:

“Living in Texas and in a large city near the Mexican border, employing illegal aliens is commonplace. I know what your going to say…it is still illegal. Which is one of the reasons this guest worker program should take affect. A lot of Republicans have a problem with Bush’s immigration policies, but I understand where he is coming from. I know we have a security problem now, but Mexicans are not the ones we fear. This guest worker program will at least identify those here and coming in.”

Reading her post tugs at the heartstrings of most conservatives. The question I would have for Mrs. Sparkle would be: By making current “illegals” legal, don’t we just encourage another wave of border crossings similar to what happened after Bush 41’s amnesty program?

The key to immigration reform is enforcement. I fear that enforcing any program encompassing millions of guest workers would necessarily be haphazard and unfair to both employers and immigrants. Or do we grow the INS into another gigantic federal department, sucking tax dollars into ineffective and worthless “showcase” programs?

Preston Taylor Holmes is mad at France (again). It seems Jacques (please trim your nosehairs) Chirac is a little nostalgic for soviet style repression of free speech:

“The French, led by their spineless, corrupt leader, Jacques “The Worm” Chirac, are seeking to outlaw “sexist and homophobic” comments. That’s right, you call somebody an ass-pirate, and you’re going to jail for up to a year. Then you’ll find out what ass-pirate really means.”

Mr. Holmes’ suggestion about how to deal with the problem may seem extreme to some. But it begs the question as to how much longer we can carry on the charade that the French are our “allies” when they trash the United States every chance they get and start to pull crap like this on their own citizens.

Vive liberté!


By: Rick Moran at 6:30 am | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (2)

E.Webscapes - Blog Design Blog linked with Weblog Award Nominees - Good Luck
12/11/2004
CATEGORY: General
TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS,

HE LIVED ALL ALONE,

IN A ONE BEDROOM HOUSE MADE OF

PLASTER AND STONE.

I HAD COME DOWN THE CHIMNEY

WITH PRESENTS TO GIVE,

AND TO SEE JUST WHO

IN THIS HOME DID LIVE.

I LOOKED ALL ABOUT,

A STRANGE SIGHT I DID SEE,

NO TINSEL, NO PRESENTS,

NOT EVEN A TREE.

NO STOCKING BY MANTLE,

JUST BOOTS FILLED WITH SAND,

ON THE WALL HUNG PICTURES

OF FAR DISTANT LANDS.

WITH MEDALS AND BADGES,

AWARDS OF ALL KINDS,

A SOBER THOUGHT

CAME THROUGH MY MIND

FOR THIS HOUSE WAS DIFFERENT,

IT WAS DARK AND DREARY,

I FOUND THE HOME OF A SOLDIER,

ONCE I COULD SEE CLEARLY.

THE SOLDIER LAY SLEEPING,

SILENT , ALONE,

CURLED UP ON THE FLOOR

IN THIS ONE BEDROOM HOME.

THE FACE WAS SO GENTLE,

THE ROOM IN SUCH DISORDER,

NOT HOW I PICTURED

A UNITED STATES SOLDIER.

WAS THIS THE HERO

OF WHOM I’D JUST READ?

CURLED UP ON A PONCHO,

THE FLOOR FOR A BED?

I REALIZED THE FAMILIES

THAT I SAW THIS NIGHT,

OWED THEIR LIVES TO THESE SOLDIERS

WHO WERE WILLING TO FIGHT.

SOON ROUND THE WORLD,

THE CHILDREN WOULD PLAY,

AND GROWNUPS WOULD CELEBRATE

A BRIGHT CHRISTMAS DAY.

THEY ALL ENJOYED FREEDOM

EACH MONTH OF THE YEAR,

BECAUSE OF THE SOLDIERS,

LIKE THE ONE LYING HERE.

I COULDN’T HELP WONDER

HOW MANY LAY ALONE,

ON A COLD CHRISTMAS EVE

IN A LAND FAR FROM HOME.

THE VERY THOUGHT

BROUGHT A TEAR TO MY EYE,

I DROPPED TO MY KNEES

AND STARTED TO CRY.

THE SOLDIER AWAKENED

AND I HEARD A ROUGH VOICE,

“SANTA DON’T CRY,

THIS LIFE IS MY CHOICE;

I FIGHT F OR FREEDOM,

I DON’T ASK FOR MORE,

MY LIFE IS MY GOD,

MY COUNTRY, MY CORPS.”

THE SOLDIER ROLLED OVER

AND DRIFTED TO SLEEP,

I COULDN’T CONTROL IT,

I CONTINUED TO WEEP.

I KEPT WATCH FOR HOURS,

SO SILENT AND STILL

AND WE BOTH SHIVERED

FROM THE COLD NIGHT’S CHILL.

I DIDN’T WANT TO LEAVE

ON THAT COLD, DARK, NIGHT,

THIS GUARDIAN OF HONOR

SO WILLING TO FIGHT.

THEN THE SOLDIER ROLLED OVER,

WITH A VOICE SOFT AND PURE,

WHISPERED, “CARRY ON SANTA,

IT’S CHRISTMAS DAY, ALL IS SECURE.”

ONE LOOK AT MY WATCH,

AND I KNEW HE WAS RIGHT.

“MERRY CHRISTMAS MY FRIEND,

AND TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT.”



This poem was written by a Marine. The following is his request. I think it is reasonable…..

PLEASE. Would you do me the kind favor of sending this to as many people as you can? Christmas will be coming soon and some credit is due to our U.S. service men and women for our being able to celebrate these festivities.Let’s try in this small way to pay a tiny bit of what we owe. Make people stop and think of our heroes living and dead, who sacrificed themselves for us. Please, do your small part to plant this small seed.

By: Rick Moran at 2:56 am | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (0)

12/10/2004
DEEP THOUGHTS
CATEGORY: General

Skeptical Inquirer has some very deep thoughts in this months issue regarding culture and the way the brain works. Is science making us more ignorant?

“But even if everyone were scientifically informed, that would not keep us from being ignorant in the following sense. We still might be lost, in that we might not have a reasonable grasp of basic issues like these: What are we? Why are we here? How are we related to nature? Why is this world here rather than some other world or “nothing at all?” What can we know? What can we hope for?”

“Throughout most of human history, people have gotten a handle on such questions by way of common sense, religion, philosophy, literature and art, educational and civil institutions, and assumptions embedded in natural language itself—in short, by way of their culture. Of course, a single culture might contain many, sometimes conflicting, answers. Nevertheless, there is such a thing as a cultural understanding of our basic outlook on the world and our place in it.”

So why has this changed? It may surprise you to learn that as you are reading this, the deepest mysteries of how the brain works are being unraveled. We may soon have knowledge that will explain consciousness itself:

“Now, neuroscience is probing the brain and behavior and discovering some startling facts. By observing electrical activity around your hippocampus on a computer screen, others can predict more accurately than you can whether you will successfully recall the name of a person you just met. Meanwhile, the neural activity associated with a choice appears to precede your conscious experience of that choice. This is just the beginning. Do these facts contradict the received cultural understanding of the self? Do they reinforce it? Or are they not facts about the self at all but about something else?”

This sense of “self” is being lost because the advance of scientific knowledge is making cultural explanations of it irrelevant. And these same advances are inadequate in answering the questions asked above. I’m sure I’d get an excellent argument on this from my more religious friends, but what are we going to do when we’re finally able to empirically determine what constitutes “reality” itself? What will happen to our sense of self?

One possible outcome will be a melding of the cultural and the scientific. Our friends at Skeptical Inquirer believe it will be some kind of scientific discipline that incorporates the humanities (art, literature, criticism) into an interdisciplinary relationship with a variety of scientific fields:

“A new interdisciplinary academic field is needed. The Center for Inquiry, a nonprofit research organization concerned with the scientific outlook, is collaborating with the University at Buffalo on a program in Science and the Public, which will initially include research and an interdisciplinary MasterÂ’s degree. [5] The program is being designed to attract scholars in the sciences and humanities, as well as educators, policy makers, and journalists who seek a new language and framework in which to discuss the intersections of science and culture.”

For most of the 20th century, there was a longing on the part of humanists to merge science and philosophy. Orwell, H.G. Wells, and C.P. Snow, among others, saw science as a vehicle to explain things that were fundamental to the human condition.

Unfortunately, so did the Third Reich. By using “science” to justify the holocaust (the idea of racial purity was based on the crackpot ideas of some discredited 19th century scholars) Hitler’s Germany demonstrated how the underpinnings of such a merger could be extraordinarily damaging.

The difference here is that the basis for the melding of science and the humanities would rest on sound scientific principles. If these efforts are successful, perhaps sometime in the near future, there will be an answer to the question: Who are we?

UPDATE: ON THE RUN FROM THE COMSYMPS

The Commissar has issued another edict from Party Headquarters and his commie goons are in the process of one of their regular “sweeps” of right wing blogs. As you all know, the commie bastard just got finished with his most heinous show trial yet as he wrote the name of his patrone across the sky in blood. He is audacity itself.

I’m getting very tired now…I haven’t eaten for three days and barely slept for twice that long. My neighbors shun me, my friends ignore me, my compatriots…killed or arrested. These are dark days for the resistance indeed. Even my own family has abandoned me by joining the conspiracy against me.

What am I to do? Should I turn myself in? Should I turn and fight? What chance do I have against the power of the State wielded with such ruthless efficiency and heartless abandon? My tears fall to the ground partially obscuring my bloody footprints as a look to the sky and cry out in frustration and rage…

YOU CAN TAKE AWAY MY LIFE…BUT YOU CAN NEVER TAKE MY FREEEEEEDOOOOOM! ARMAUGH GO BRAUGH!

The dogs are getting very close now…I can hear them baying in anticipation of the kill. I put the gun to my head. Before I pull the trigger on my 9mm Makarov, I think of my home, my family, my dog, my cat, the first time I had sex, that day in the park when Nikolai professed his love for me, that time at the bar when Misha insulted me and I had to belt him, the first time I heard the Beatles…

(OH FOR GOD’S SAKE PULL THE TRIGGER ALREADY YOU MORON!)

By: Rick Moran at 6:12 am | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (0)

12/9/2004
WHERE LATE THE SWEET BIRDS SANG
CATEGORY: General

Where are you going?
Where are you going?
Can you take me with you?
For my hand is cold
And needs warmth
Where are you going?

Far beyond where the horizon lies
Where the horizon lies
And the land sinks into mellow blueness
Oh please, take me with you


“By My Side” from “Godspell” Music and New Lyrics by Stephen Schwartz.

A few days back, Gerard Vanderleun of “American Digest” wrote a fascinating post on the future of blogs:

“For good or ill, blogs are a force to be reckoned with on the national and international scene. What remains to be seen is whether or not blogs, as a medium—or better still “a multi-medium of the multitudes”—can build upon this position, bootstrapping themselves into ever widening spheres of influence. This is, as is the manner of blogs, already happening on an ad hoc basis. It will continue to happen at an accelerating pace. But it can be accelerated through applications of capital, organization, planning, and most importantly, intent.”

Gerard brings up Rathergate and points out that more than anything, it was a fluke; a confluence of events that led to blowback />
“In a reactive medium such as blogging, one brings one’s opinions and expertise (limited, expansive or non-existent) to any question that engages one’s interest. At times, the confluence of these factors—most famously in the CBS False Documents scandal—creates a situation that causes what is sometimes referred to as “blowback” in the analog world. But these cases are still few and far between since there are not that many situations where the elements (documents, pdf files, computer and typewriter and word processing knowledge) combine to form a perfect storm of blogging blowback.”

Spot on. Blogger triumphalism regarding Rather’s retirement was, I believe, misplaced. I tried to make the point here that Rather was preferable to what we’re going to get with the next generation of MSM anchors. And for all the writing and analytical talent out there, how many bloggers are going to become real, working journalists? Vanderleun makes a similar point:

“Individual bloggers typically begin their pages with a few friends and family and slowly build readership, if they build it at all, over months and years. Three focused group blogs bannered at the top of newyorktimes.com would achieve in a matter of weeks a readership that most bloggers only dream of. And corporate bloggers would also have something most bloggers don’t even begin to dream of, a paycheck. NYTimesBlogs.com would also enjoy many other advantages that could, left to their own devices, take them to the top of the Technorati 100 and reduce the readership of other pages across the board.

At the moment, the news gathering organization of something like The New York Times is focused on delivering news and ‘analysis’ from a thousand different sources to a newsroom and from there to patterns of ink pressed into bleached wood pulp. If that focus shifts, only a little bit, to the electronic streams of blogs the effect on blog readership will be profound. Currently, the Blogosphere is relying on the fact that organizations like the Times are square and retrograde.”


Allah (bless his departed soul) also points out the limitations of blogs as a “hobby” and how we react to “real” news organizations:

“And kudos for at least recognizing that bloggers, at present, are almost wholly parasitic on the MSM. Instapundit had an item last week about how blogs are supposedly kicking Brian Williams’s ass, and two things immediately occurred to me. 1) If not for Williams and co., we wouldn’t have jackshit for material. And 2) even if we are kicking his ass, so what? Why the incessant triumphalism? To paraphrase what Chris Rock said of the O.J. acquittal, where’s my kicking-Brian-Williams’s-ass prize?”

(Note: Allah’s “mystery” disappearance turns out not to be a mystery…he got bored.)

So…what’s next? Given the impetus blogs have given corporate media, I have no doubt that within the next 12 months we see some attempt to co-opt blogs popularity either by imitation or by absorption. Will Glenn Reynolds quit his day job? How about Charles Johnson? Those two gentlemen could very well find themselves asked to join some kind of corporate blogging empire. Will that change the way they post? The frequency? Their point of view? Will that be the goal of new bloggers like me, starting a blog like we started garage bands 30 years ago?

Come to think of it, the maturation of Rock ‘n Roll might be a model for the blogosphere in the near future. Who’s going to sell out? Who’s going to stay “pure?” Would it matter to you if Ace or Frank J. used their site for beer ads or laundry soap instead of books?

So many questions with no answers. Gerard wrestles with the idea of this “revolution:

“Recently some wag secure in her mainstream media “career” remarked that revolutions don’t happen when people don’t leave their houses. In the past, that may have been true. But in the past, the controls of revolution were always found somewhere outside the house. This is not necessarily any longer the case. Through rudimentary linking and interactivity, blogs are able to raise money, promote candidates and issues to victory in elections, send supplies to those in need a continent or a world away, and even shake the foundations of governments around the world. If the seeds of revolution are in the ideas of men, then blogs are the means to scatter these seeds far and wide with little regard for borders. Revolutionary ideas and information once needed, at the very least, printing presses, paper, and committed couriers. No longer.”

“Shake the foundations of government…” One only need look at Iran and the affect blogs are having on that oppressed country to see how the radioactive mullahs are terrified of blogggers. Like the audio cassettes that helped overthrow the Shah 25 years ago, blogs are sowing the seeds of destruction of the Iranian government today. And once again, Gerard struggles to define “what it all means.”

“Having gained traction in the attention of many, blogging now needs to blog forward towards a greater focus. It needs to move from being reactive towards the active through a kind of Aikido point interactivity. The power implicit in the raw number of the now fully engaged minds of the Blogosphere make this possible. The fuel source will continue to be the strength of observable bias in which we are, to quote Mike Godwin of Godwin’s Law, “Mainlining each other’s thoughts.” A medium that broadcasts a vast spectrum of insights and knowledge will always be a medium worthy of attention. A medium that can learn to focus that broad spectrum is a medium transform the world far beyond the one to many broadcast model that has dominated the mediascape for centuries.”

I don’t know where this new media is going. All I know is I want to try and keep up with it. In her sci-fi masterpiece “Where Late the Sweet Birds Sang” Kate Wilhelm posits a world where humanity has virtually destroyed itself and reproduces itself through cloning. After a few generations, the clones lose much of their essential humanity. Their emotions, their analytical skills, their originality fade away. It’s left to a 12 year old boy, conceived naturally by two clones, to reinvigorate the human race and start the regeneration process that will lead humans to a new awareness of themselves.

Blogs are changing the way people live. Will they simply fade away? Morph into something else? Or will they lead the human race towards a radically altered perception of the possible?

Anyway you look at it, things are going to change very quickly.

By: Rick Moran at 2:44 pm | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (0)

BEATING THE SURRENDER DRUM
CATEGORY: General

You’ve got to hand it to Kevin Drum.

One of the more clueless moonbats around, Mr. Drum recently turned on his 25 candle-watt intellect to ask 8 sniffy questions of conservatives about the Iraq war. Why?:


A FEW WEE QUESTIONS….I’m sure that conservative bloggers are feeling pretty smug about the Beinart-Drum-Atrios-Yglesias tiff regarding liberals and national security, but if I could have a moment of your time before you bust a collective gut over this, I’d like to suggest that you could all stand to have a brutally honest conversation about a few things yourselves. Just to get you started, here are a few questions — numbered for easy reference:

What an insufferable lout. First, to place himself in the company of two first class minds like Peter Beinart and Matthew Yglesias is the heighth of hubris. Secondly, I was not aware that righty blogs were “pretty smug” or even “busting a gut” over some internecine tiff between lefties who want to fight the GWOT and moonbats who want to surrender. As far as I’m concerned, both sides should be condemned for partisan hackery during the last election, openly rooting for bad news from Iraq so that President Bush would be defeated.

In spite of all that, here are Mr. Drum’s questions. I’ve taken the liberty of including links to 4 excellent minds of our own on the right who answered Mr. Drum in their posts:

James Joiner of Outside the Beltway
Dean Esmay of Dean’s World
John Hawkins of Right Wing News
Pat Curley at Brainster Blog

1. Considering how Iraq has gone so far, do you still think that American military power is a good way to promote tolerance and democracy in the Middle East? Has your position on this changed in any way over the past two years?

For myself, the answer to both is yes. I was skeptical that force could bring democracy anywhere. But steady progress in both Afghanistan and Iraq has changed my mind.

Here’s Jame’s answer:

“I’ve never been a neo-con and have always been dubious of the use of force for such things. Clearly, the presence of American troops anywhere will create resentment. On the other hand, Hamid Karzai was just sworn in as Aghanistan’s first elected president and elections appear to be on track for Iraq in late January. These two would constitute 100% of all democracies in the Muslim Middle East. So, yes, my position is changing as a result of the last two years.”

2. Shortly after 9/11, Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson said publicly that they thought the attacks were well-deserved retribution from God in response to moral decay — as personified by gays, feminists, the ACLU, and NOW. Do you worry that Falwell and Robertson are identified by many as the face of the Republican party? Do you think President Bush has sufficiently distanced himself from them and their followers?

What is it about the left that they feel conservatives are a bunch of bible thumping, gay hating nitwits? Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson are as representative of the Republican Party as Rep. Mary McKinney is of the dems.

Here’s Pat’s response:

“Lots of people say stupid things. The leaders of the religious left wing are people like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, who’ve both been known to make viciously anti-Semitic comments, comments that in Sharpton’s case may have incited killings. Did John Kerry distance himself sufficiently from Al Sharpton and his followers? Or did Kerry pay him $86,000 to campaign for him?” (Amen bruddah)

3. Is democracy promotion really one of your core concerns? Just how far are you willing to go to demonstrate your credibility on this subject? Note: President Bush’s policy toward either Pakistan or Saudi Arabia would be excellent case studies to bring this question to life.

We heard this baloney all during the election; as in “Brazil is capable of building nuclear weapons…are we gonna attack Brazil?” To me, this explains why moonbats coddle terrorists and burn the American flag…they have a problem with enemy identification.

Here’s Dean:

“Yes it is one of my core concerns. You may ask as many specific questions on this subject as you wish. It is also my view that politics and diplomacy are arts of the possible, not the ideal. We are not in a position at the moment to force democracy on Saudi Arabia, and can only take a carrot-and-stick approach to them. Strategically, Pakistan is almost as difficult for we would have no easy way to continue our vital work in Afghanistan if Pakistan were to collapse into civil war. It is thus my sincere hope that the reforms in Iraq and Afghanistan (and maybe, just maybe, Palestine) will over the next generation make it easier for us to encourage other regimes in the region to follow suit—or, luckier still, that it might happen without any major intervention on our part at all.”

4. On a related note, which do you think is more important to the Bush administration in the short term: preservation of a stable oil supply from the Middle East or spreading freedom and liberty throughout the region? Would you be interested in seeing the records of Dick Cheney’s 2001 energy task force to verify this? Please be extra honest with this question.

Once again now, all together and with feeling…OIL IS NOT A COMMODITY. OIL IS THE LIFEBLOOD OF HUMAN CIVILIZATION. The question itself insults the intelligence and boggles the mind. As for the Veep’s energy task force, does Drum believe he’s gonna find evidence of a plot to take over the world? Maybe Drum thinks Cheney should have asked the moonbats at the Natural Resources Defense Council what their energy policy would be? We’d be shoveling horse manure off the streets within a year.

Here’s John’s take:

“A stable oil supply. And what about it? Is the implication supposed to be because we value oil that we can’t think Democracy is important at the same time? That’s a bizarre sort of thinking isn’t it? I can just imagine Kevin Drum screaming at the TV set during the commercials.”

5. A substantial part of the Christian right opposes any compromise with Palestinians because they believe that Jewish domination of the region west of the Jordan River is a precondition for the Second Coming. Is this a reasonable belief? Or do you think these people qualify as loons who should be purged from the Republican party?

A “substantial part” of the Christian right? He calls a couple of crackpot TV preachers “a substantial part?” This is a trick question Kevin, right? No, I don’t think it’s reasonable and no, republicans don’t do “purges…” Only murderous leftist moonbats do that kind of thing…ask Castro.

Here’s James excellent comeback:

“How substantial a part of the GOP coalition are we talking about here? Is it more substantial than the segment of Democrats who believe the best way to end racial discrimination is to categorize people by race and allocate government contracts and educational slots according to numerical targets? Regardless, no, I don’t believe we need to purge any qualified citizen from the roles of voters.”

6. Yes or no: do you think we should invade Iran if it becomes clear — despite our best efforts — that they are continuing to build nuclear weapons? If this requires a military draft, would you be in favor?

This is simple minded sophistry so I’ll give a simple answer: Yes and no. If you don’t believe the radioactive mullahs would give their toys to someone who’d use it against the US, you’re more of a simpleminded fool than these questions make you out to be. And the war would be over before a significant number of draftees could be trained so nix on the draft.

Here’s Mr. Curley’s succinct response:

“Invade, probably not. Bomb the crap out of their facilities? You betcha.” (Hooah)

7. If President Bush decides to substantially draw down our troop presence in Iraq after the January 30 elections, will you support that decision? Please answer this question prior to January 30.

How long after, Drumhead? When the violence doesn’t threaten the stability of the Iraqi government, then yes. Why are moonbats obsessed with setting a DATE for withdrawal rather than having CONDITIONS ON THE GROUND dictate when withdrawals should occur? It’s loony!

Here’s Dean’s thoughtful take:


“If you mean announcing plans for gradual withdrawal, possibly so, but I’d like to see the plan. Although I think completely leaving the region would be a mistake; I would hope we could negotiate basing rights there just as we have had for generations with South Korea, Japan, Germany, etc. In any case I would hope that we will do whatever we can to help the new government establish its own stable security forces so that, within a year or so after the elections, we are no longer having to do most of the heavy lifting on security.”

“For the record, by the way, I completely expect violence to keep ratcheting upward in Iraq until election day. It’s to be expected; the fascist and theocratic elements in Iraq and the neighboring regimes will do everything they can to try to stop the elections. Which is why the next two months are so critical.”


8. Would you agree that people who accept Laurie Mylroie’s crackpot theories about Saddam Hussein’s involvement in 9/11 might be taking the threat of terrorism a little too seriously? What do you think should be done with them?

(Steam starts to billow out of Superhawk’s ears.) TO THE GUILLOTINE WITH THEM What kind of a question is “What do you think should be done with them?” Ignore them, ridicule them, applaud them….for God’s sake, what does Cymbalface think we SHOULD “do with them?” String ‘em up? Boil ‘em in oil? What a maroon, as Bugs Bunny would say. They’re Americans, moonbat! They can think whatever they want without the fear that Moonbats like you will knock on their doors in the middle of the night and take them away to re-education camps simply because they believe some wingnut’s fantasy theories of 9/11.

John has the last word on this:

“I’m unfamiliar with Laurie Mylroie’s theories. However, to the best of my knowledge, Saddam Hussein was not involved with 9/11 although he certainly had ties to Al-Qaeda. As to people who think that Saddam was tied in to the attack, I think they’re probably wrong given what we know, but no more so than people who believe that Iraq was a “war for oil” for example. So what’s to “be done with them”? Say we disagree with them? Sounds good to me…”

Sounds good to me too.

By: Rick Moran at 6:56 am | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (1)

Soma. linked with Soma....
12/8/2004
IM OK…YOU’RE AN AMERICAN
CATEGORY: General

Christmas is a great time for gag gifts. My own predilections tend more towards the scatological types. There’s nothing like a whoopee cushion to really embarrass someone at a party. I tried this one on my obsessive compulsive ex-wife. After nearly swooning with angst about her ruined carpet, she smiled a tight lipped little smile and swore she’d get even.

She put a live snake in in my sleeping bag while we were camping in the Smokey Mountains.

Then there are some gag gifts that say more than they’re intended to say:

“There are those who insist that smart American travelers should stow their Yankee identity and simply pretend they’re Canadians to ensure safe passage overseas.”

“New Mexico-based T-Shirt King, in fact, is offering a “Going Canadian” kit for $25 that includes a T-shirt emblazoned with the Canadian flag and the phrase “O Canada,” a matching maple leaf patch for luggage, a window sticker, lapel pin and a little guide called “How to Speak Canadian, Eh?”

According to the owner, Lisa Broadbent, the kits are “flying off the shelves.” She’s also getting calls from both Canadians and Americans:

“Some of the Canadians are thrilled by the idea. Others are offended, because they don’t want what they call ‘rude’ Americans disguising themselves as Canadians,” Mrs. Broadbent said. “The Americans say if you’re not proud to be an American, then go pack your bags and move to Canada.”

My sentiments exactly. And it brings up something that’s been puzzling me for years about Europeans.

Why do they care so much about what the United States does in the world?

I mean, it’s not like we meddle in European politics or try to subvert the governments of France, Germany, Belgium, Holland, or tiny Luxemburg (even though a couple of those governments may in fact deserve a little subverting.) And it’s not like we have huge armies poised on the European frontier ready to pounce on some poor, unsuspecting, peace-loving nation who only wants national health care for its citizens and the freedom to practice euthanasia on babies who won’t contribute to society.

What is it then?

P.J. O’Rourke likens the attitudes of foreigners towards America to that of a 14 year old boy infatuated with an 18 year old girl. The 14 year old boy does all kinds of things to try and get the older girl to notice him to no avail. In desperation, the boy starts to tease and ridicule the girl in public, trying to get the girl’s attention. In the end, he hates the girl and despises her for not returning his affections.

A simplistic explanation but containing a whiff of truth. By and large, Americans just don’t care very much what Europeans think of us. John Kerry’s campaign slogan “Making America respected again” (as if the Euroweenies ever had anything but contempt for anything American) did not resonate with the majority. This must drive the Eurosluts batty. And it just proves a comeback line I’ve been using for years when foreigners start in on trashing the United States:

“The only Europeans who understand America aren’t Europeans any more…they’re Americans.”

Face it…The Europeans have a simplistic, over generalized, exaggerated, contemptuous view of America and its people. It’s also time to face the fact that there’s absolutely nothing we can do to change that attitude short of acting and becoming just like them.

And that’s something that a bunch of dead, white, (former) European males set out to prevent in Philadelphia at the Constitutional Convention 218 years ago. They made a conscious, rational decision to break with any and all things European and set up something new—a constitutional republic based on the rule of law, not the rule of kings.

UPDATE: TOP TEN WAYS TO CONVINCE A STRANGER YOU’RE ACTUALLY CANADIAN

Ace has a hilarious take on the kit with some cautionary bromides for us poor, ignorant Americans:

“Try to get in the mindset of living your life as an insignificant ice-peon of an irrelevant frostberg.”

Read it all…it’s a stitch.

UPDATE: WELCOME “ACE OF SPADESREADERS

Welcome to all “Ace of Spades” visitors. Thanks to Ace for the link. And please blogroll me…be glad to return the favor if you post your address in the comments.

By: Rick Moran at 3:35 am | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (0)

12/7/2004
AN “INFAMOUS” DATE
CATEGORY: General

They died, most of them, not knowing what hit them.

Below decks on the USS Arizona there was chaos, panic, heroism, cowardice…all the things one would expect less than 15 minutes after the unprovoked attack by the Japanese began on December 7, 1941. And then…an unlucky hit on the main powder magazine and in a flash, the Arizona was lifted 20 feet out of the water and crashed back into the harbor belching huge columns of black smoke and fire.

Most of the almost 1200 souls trapped below decks died instantly. Some few—the unlucky ones—did not. Although not made public at the time, it was thought that as many as 2 dozen live sailors were hopelessly trapped as the huge battleship sank and began to fill with water. For as long as 10 days, desperate rescuers could hear the tapping of trapped crew members as they tried to work their way with blowtorches through the massive ship’s superstructure.

Finally the tapping stopped.

We’ve never really learned the “lesson” of Pearl Harbor. Nine years later, without warning or provocation, the North Koreans invaded the South with the active participation and assistance of both China and the Soviet Union. By the time we were able to meaningfully respond, our troops were bottled up in a small pocket on the southern end of the Korean peninsula. It took a massive effort on the part of the American army to evict the North Koreans…and nearly 32,000 casualties.

September 11, 2001 was our generation’s “Pearl Harbor.” But was it really? I’d argue that 9/11 was much more of a bolt out of the blue. The world was at war in 1941 while 60 years later, there were no comparable conflicts. Certainly, we were arrogant and overconfident that horrible day while our fathers and grandfathers were more uncertain of the future given our unpreparedness for war. I suppose the big difference was an underlying belief in the basic goodness of America on the part of our parents while a large segment of the American population today does not see the US in a similar light.

In fact, those who pass for liberals today by and large believe that the United States is evil, that our history is a sham, that our culture is corrupt, that our myths are worthless, our legends false, and the very ideals that propelled America from a small, coastal country of 13 radically different colonies into a continental hyperpower are a lie.

God help us if these people ever get in power.

The Commissar has some excellent links to Pearl Harbor sites here as well as an affecting post here on a survivor of the USS Oklahoma, another doomed ship from that tragic day.

By: Rick Moran at 1:20 pm | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (0)

MOONBATS IN WONDERLAND
CATEGORY: General

John Hawkins links to an entertaining post from the Democratic Underground:

“Brundle_Fly: “KERRY WON! I have no doubt of it now, the fraud is apparent on so many levels.

I am sure Kerry got the popular vote, there is no way * could get 3.5 million votes more than Kerry. and * is just sitting there laughing as the Dem’s look inward to try to figure out what went wrong. WAKE UP PEOPLE.”


Sounds like a sure fire candidate for PEST therapy. But this particular moonbat has actually found an outlet for his frustration…he begins to weep:

The United States of America is dead to me now, all of the things we stood for are gone, and using them as a launching pad to some patriotic drivel to keep the population is line is unacceptable.

I say its time to fight!


YAH! Let’s fight…go team go…or, in the immortal words of Bluto: “Let’s DOOOOO IIIIIIITTTTTT…GO GO GO GO GO GO GO…”

But before you moonbats run out the door and out to the garage to build the Delta Pi Death Machine, please remember this:

God (moonbats may substitute Buddah, Allah, or Jim Croce if they wish) grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.


UPDATE: I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that Right Wing News is nominated for “Best Conservative Blog” in the web awards. Vote for John here.

By: Rick Moran at 9:28 am | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (0)

MOONBAT MARINADE
CATEGORY: General

OLD GRAY WHORE PROSTITUTES THE UN

Here’s some excellent fisking done by the guys over at QandO regarding a NY Times story about what a great job Kofi (What? A crook? Me?) Annan is doing. (BTW, make sure and vote Questions and Observations for “Best Group Blog” here):

“You know, when the New York Times starts an editorial with the following sentence, you pretty much know where the article is going:”

‘The assault on the United Nations is escalating.’

“Well, there you go. An assault on that bastion of international legitimacy, the UN. And, of course, it’s an unfair assault:”


How about this bit regarding corporate scandals, where the Times was all but calling for the Guillotine for offending CEO’s:

Although, it would be interesting to replace the words “Kofi Annan” and “The UN” in this article with the words “Ken Lay” and “Enron” and then try to imagine any conceivable circumstances in which the Times would print that article. When it’s Enron, we need to have immediate prosecutions, lengthy prison sentences, and, hopefully, nasty jailhouse assaults during a long, post-conviction prison stay.

But when the proprieties of Kofi’s Crowd are suspect, then we must all avoid a hasty and unseemly rush to judgment. Indeed, like OJ Simpson’s tireless search for the “real killers”, the NYT seems to be urging us to look elsewhere for the real culprits in the OFF scandal.

“The United Nations bureaucracy does not bear the primary responsibility for letting Saddam Hussein amass a secret treasury estimated by official investigators at $10 billion to $21 billion.”


Wha? Who? WTF? These bozo’s from “The United Nations bureaucracy” were in charge of not only overseeing the program, but making sure that Saddam wasn’t using funds to re-arm himself! If they don’t bear the “primary responsibility” then who does? Mickey Mouse?

The QandO guys make the same point along with having a few choice comments on the overbloated, overweaning, overfed international weenies who make up the UN.

OLD MOONBATS NEVER DIE…THEY GO TO COURT

Perhaps the woman recognized as the Grande Dame of Washington moonbats is Civil Rights Commission Chairwoman Mary Frances Berry. She’s been around in one capacity or another since 1977 and is one of the most publicity hungry bureaucrats in Washington.

Now that her term is up, perhaps we can finally say SEE YA! (and don’t let the door hit your fat ass on the way out).

But, not so fast…Apparently, Ms. Berry is delusional and may require hospitalization; this from Powerline:

“But Berry balked at leaving now, arguing through a spokesman that she and vice chairman Cruz Reynoso, who also is being replaced, have terms that run until midnight Jan. 21, 2005. The White House maintained that their six-year terms expired Sunday and that Berry and Reynoso had been replaced.”

Hindrocket sums up her life and career nicely:

“This grasping effort to hang on to “power” for a few more days is typical. Ms. Berry has been an embarrassment for twenty-five years, as has the Civil Rights Commission. Only the magic phrase “civil rights” has prevented the Commission from being a laughingstock. That phrase, thankfully, is no longer enough. Mary Frances Berry, one of the most biased and partisan figures in American public life, RIP.”

UPDATE: Not that Hindrocket, Deacon and The Big Trunk need my endorsement, but you can vote for Powerline here in the category of “Best Blog.” This is a hard category to judge hence, I haven’t made up my mind yet. In their favor, Powerline has some of the best writing around. I also like the layout of their site…clean, crisp, with no extraneous BS.

Maybe some day when I grow up…

By: Rick Moran at 7:39 am | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (0)

12/6/2004
SCI-TECH MUSINGS
CATEGORY: General

FAT ASS ASTRONAUTS JEOPARDIZE MISSION

An Overeaters Anonymous chapter in outer space?

“NASA is drafting a plan to evacuate the International Space Station because the two-man crews are eating more than engineers predicted, prompting a critical food shortage weeks earlier than expected.”

“The internal NASA reports call the shortage “critical” and attribute it in part to “higher consumption than planned.” Station managers list the inability to keep the station staffed as one of the most serious risks facing the outpost, a problem driven by dwindling food, water and supplies.”


I wouldn’t be surprised if NASA was figuring consumption based on the same cockamamie USDA data that says being 5’11”, I should weigh 155 lbs. Yeah, I’m a fat old man going deaf, but I haven’t weighed 155 since I was in high school and doing sports everyday. And these are the same USDA dieticians who say you should only eat 4 oz of beef at dinner. Trying to eat only 4 oz of steak is like trying to eat two spoonfuls of Ben and Jerry’s Chunky Monkey…can’t be done.

The fact that they’re overeating shouldn’t be surprising. After all, what’s there to do up there? No women, no porn, no NFL, no hockey…oh, wait; we don’t have hockey down here either…

WHAT DO YOU SAY TO A NAKED ALIEN?

Yes, there are people who go to work everyday and think about what we should say if we’re ever contacted by aliens:

“Forget about sending mathematical relationships, the value of pi, or the Fibonacci series. Rid your brain of the thought (no doubt borrowed from “Close Encounters of the Third Kind”) that aliens are best addressed with musical arpeggios. No, if we want to broadcast a message from Earth, I propose that we just feed the Google servers into the transmitter. Send the aliens the World Wide Web. It would take half a year or less to transmit this in the microwave; using infrared lasers shortens the broadcast time to no more than two days.”

Er…ahem. What about all of those “adult” websites? (Go ahead and google “free porn” and see how many pages there are:)

“Sure, the Web contains a lot of redundant information (and a lot of unsavory material, too, but after all, thatÂ’s part of the human condition). And yes, itÂ’s largely in English, which even their universal translators might not know. But the point is, with so much redundant information, clever beings will have sufficient data for decipherment.”

“Clever beings” indeed. If they need any help in contrasting the acting styles of say Christy Canyon and Racquel Darrien, I’d be more than happy to help them out…with the proviso that they abduct me, Christy, and Racquel and strand us on one of those “Paradise Planets” I’ve heard so much about…(WARNING: Previous 3 links NOT WORK SAFE)

MOON GOD TO EAT JUPITER

“A rare and spectacular event will occur in the early morning hours of Tuesday, Dec. 7 when the brilliant planet Jupiter and three of its largest satellites pass behind Earth’s Moon.”

Don’t let those scientist fellas fool ya. I have it on the best authority (the warlock who heads up our local wickam) that the Great God Tao is angry and will eat Jupiter unless we appease and assuage its outrage.

This can be done by sacrificing, in order; a goat, a ferret, and a marmoset and by then drinking the blood of a vestal virgin. Only then will the Great God Tao relent and, after about an hour, spit the planet out.

Now…I know where we can get a goat and a ferret…maybe we could steal a marmoset from the zoo or something…but a vestal virgin? THIS time of year? What with all the mistletoe hanging around I can’t think of anyone around here.

There may be someone in the next county…as long as frolicking with faeries doesn’t count…

SCIENTISTS UNRAVEL MYSTERY OF DEMOCRAT’S THOUGHT

Australian scientists have been able to track the path of a single thought as it travels through the brain of a Democrat:

“The latest developments in scanning techniques allow brain experts to track responses in the brain from particular movements and thoughts, in real time.”

“If we ask them to read a sentence we can actually look at them processing a single sentence. In other words we can look at the footprint of a single thought,” Professor Keith Thulborn, from Chicago’s Centre for Magnetic Resonance Imaging, said.”


Scientists used the brains of Democrats because they’re so uncomplicated. It’s been suggested that the sentence referenced above was “Bushitler stole the election by getting Diebold Corporation to rig electronic voting machines and take votes away from Kerry and add them to Bush’s totals.”

No word from scientists if any other thoughts were found in the brains of Democrats.

GIVE ME THE “WILD WESTANYDAY

Not content with presiding over the most catastrophic intelligence failure in the history of human civilization, George Tenet has now set his sights on the internet:

“Former CIA Director George J. Tenet yesterday called for new security measures to guard against attacks on the United States that use the Internet, which he called “a potential Achilles’ heel.”

“I know that these actions will be controversial in this age when we still think the Internet is a free and open society with no control or accountability,” he told an information-technology security conference in Washington, “but ultimately the Wild West must give way to governance and control.”


Omigod…can’t have an internet that’s a “free and open society” in a free and open society! That just won’t do. Better to have “governance and control.”

Riddle me this, Batman…What has two arms, two legs, no common sense, a penchant to exercise dictatorial control over its environment, and shit-for-brains?

The answer, of course, is a bureaucrat. And people like Tenet, who believe the terms governance and control are not mutually exclusive, can’t imagine anything that has “governance” without “control.”

Now, dearest readers, you and I both know the only way to “control” the internet is to keep track of where you and I visit everyday. We also know that despite promises that the information will remain confidential, or won’t be shared with other agencies, or could only be accessed with the permission of a federal judge, the busy little bureaucrats will do their damnedest to circumvent whatever restrictions are placed in their way. After all, they’ll only be “doing their jobs.”

Yeah the net is “the wild west”...but I’d rather have it resemble Dodge City than the Lubyanka.

By: Rick Moran at 6:26 am | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (0)