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Monday, November 8, 2010

"Pakistan is an ally and India a market".

From The Times of India.

India is an interesting place. My experience was that the people can be hard to impress. I imagine the president is learning that.

Friday, October 22, 2010

NPR Prediction: How Soviet can you get?

After the CEO of NPR showed herself to be a vicious fool by publicly implying Juan Williams was fired for repeatedly violating ethical standards, and that Mr. Williams may be in need of psychiatric help, here is NPR's next move in it's self-imposed idiot-kabuki dance:

As demands grow that NPR detail the alleged ethical violations, NPR will have some spokesperson announce that NPR cannot comment because it is a personnel matter. The spokesperson will announce this imbecility with a straight face.

You read it here first. If it hasn't already happened, that is.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The San Jose mine rescue

The Chilean miner rescue is a wonderful thing to watch. The miners are being rescued from what up until this past decade would have been certain death. Think about that for a moment. All the mining that that has gone on in the world over the millenia, and until about 10 years ago, miners like these Chileans would have - in similar circumstances - faced certain, horrible deaths.

To quote Patrick O'Brian's Captain Aubry from Master and Commander: "What a fascinating, modern world we live in."

But even as I watched, moist eyed and joyous, I was unable to keep a thought from popping into my head:

The place was a media circus and the president of Chile was personally grandstanding the event. If something went wrong in the rescue as a result of media or political pressure we would never know it. Were engineers and rescuers being at all hampered by an imperative to, essentially, make the event good TV? Was anything at all in the rescue schedule or the rescue process being effected by considerations such as the president's presence on the scene? Was any equipment placed or were any rescue personnel staged in certain places because of TV camera angles?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

They can't seem to hit Breitbart's pitches. He's gotten inside their heads.

So there's this big story the last couple days about a woman named Shirley Sherrod, late an Assistant Deputy Something-or-other for the Department of Agriculture in Georgia.

Andrew Breitbart posted a video of her at Big Government that shows her telling a story to an NAACP audience that seems to imply she had (at one time at least) a less than open-minded racial view of whites. Within a short time of the video hitting the internet Miss Sherrod, apparently by order of the White House and at the request of the NAACP, was hitting the street as a new member of the unemployed.

But wait, there's more. It seems that a full version of the video (Breitbart only showed an edited version - he claims it was all he possessed) shows that Ms. Sherrod was actually telling a story about overcoming racial animosity. The NAACP and the White House now seem to want to take back - can you believe it? - her forced resignation.

A couple points:

1. How jittery and jumpy do the NAACP and the White House have to be to fire an Assistant Secretary of Something-or-other within a couple hours of an obviously incomplete Breitbart video coming on-line? When I personally saw the Breitbart video it seemed clear there was more to the story and that the rest of the video might show Sherrod was not advocating racism of any sort. Even Breitbart indicated the rest of the video had to be seen. The WH and the NAACP didn't bother to find out before they reacted even though it turns out the NAACP had access to the entire tape.

2. Breitbart is driving the Left crazy. He slaughtered them with a slow drip release of the underage-illegal-alien hooker videos at ACORN. They refused to act as the videos showed ever more blatant misbehavior. Now he flicks off a quick sidewinder outside the strike zone and they swing for the stands with everything they've got, ending up with nothing but air (except for the egg on their faces). They can't seem to hit Breitbart's pitches. He's gotten inside their heads.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Living "a really good life"

In the post below Max Weismann asked what the greatest impediment is to "a really good life" and I responded in the comments that the culprit is mankind's "radical depravity". This is a theological term that means, essentially, that man's sinfulness runs - sometimes like a thread and other times like a raging river in flood - through every single thing man does. (As an HR professional let me add I don't use the term "man" in a gender-specific way. All chicks are radically depraved as well.) We are all sinners.

Max came back with something interesting enough that I figure it's worth its own post. He wrote:
I ... restrict my discussions of the problems of the good life and the good society to the temporal life and to that life on its secular plane. Those who are religious persons and distinguish between the secular and the religious activities they engage in, as well as between their worldly and their religious aspirations, will be able to affix appropriate qualifications, additions, and even dissents to various things I will say "without regard to religion."
I have a problem with this. There are really only two types of answers to the question, "what is a good life"? One type of answer includes a moral component (the '"good life" includes doing the right things) and the other type of answer does not include a moral component (the "good life" is based strictly on stuff and/or feelings you get for yourself). The second type of answer is generally frowned upon by the philosopher crowd so there is almost always a moral component or "right" behavior required when philosopher types talk about a "good life". See, for instance, the comments thread where Max asked this same question at the Center for the Study of Great Ideas.

So, if living a "good life" involves moral behavior (and most philosophers agree it does) and most religious people get moral guidance from their religions (and they do) and most people are in fact to some extent religious (and they are) why do modern philosophers insist that discussion of morals must be so "secular" or "temporal" that such discussions must specifically exclude religion?

Rather than ask the religious to somehow "affix appropriate (religious)qualifications, additions, and even dissents" to discussions of morals, how about asking the non-religious to remove - if they can - the religious aspects of morality that they don't care for? If a "really good life" is defined as strictly material it would make sense to exclude religion in discussions about it. But since in reality discussions of the "good life" just about always include concepts such as morality, virtue, and "right behavior" this no-religion rule seems to me not just strange but a bizarrely self-inflicted handicap.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

What in your view . . .

Is the single greatest impediment, towards mankind and individuals from achieving a really good life?

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Coulter on the Kagan hearings

It's Thursday so it must be time for Ann Coulter's column.

"(L)iberals see the Supreme Court as their backup legislature, giving them all the laws Democrats can't pass themselves because they'd be voted out of office if they did."

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Kagan Kabuki - Why so serious?

The Elena Kagan nomination hearings in the Senate are surreal on a couple fronts.

First, everybody - Republicans, Democrats, and journalists on the left and right - are pretending that we want to find out what kind of Supreme Court Justice Dean Kagan would make. She is a hard-left political lawyer with no publication record and no experience as a judge. She will of course be a hard-left political Supreme Court Justice with no experience in judicial opinion writing and no prior experience as a judge. How is this any sort of mystery? One could probably predict with a high level of accuracy which way she will vote on almost any case. The only interesting thing will be examining how convoluted the reasoning is in her written opinions.

Second, I read somewhere that Kagan (and Sotomayor before her) both made opening statements avowing their dedication to the Constitution, statements that could have been made by John Roberts. I heard neither of them so I don't know if this is true. If it is though, how does the hard-left justify its view of a "living Constitution" if even hard-left judicial nominees have to deny the view in public?

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Steyn on the Hapless Mr. Obama...

"Barack Obama was supposed to be the best, the very best, and yet he is always, reliably, consistently mediocre"

Full column is here.

Monday, May 24, 2010

O’Sullivan’s Law

Andrew Klavan:

O’Sullivan’s Law states that any organization or enterprise that is not expressly right wing will become left wing over time. The law is named after British journalist John O’Sullivan, who cites as proof the ACLU, the Ford Foundation and the Episcopal Church.

He could have cited Law & Order too, NBC’s long running arrest-and-trial television show that has just been canceled after 21 years on the air.

The entire article is here.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Primary Night in Pennsylvania

Yesterday was primary day in Pennsylvania and last night was the first time I've been to any political candidate's headquarters on election night. In fact I made it to two of them.

As Republicans, my friend Bernie and I were both invited to the primary night headquarters of Pat Toomey at the Best Western Hotel in Bethlehem. We were also invited to wait for results with the campaign team of Justin Simmons, the 23 year old insurgent that was challenging incumbent Rep Karen Beyer for the nomination for State Representative of the 131st District. Bernie and I had both circulated petitions to get Justin on the primary ballot. We went to the Toomey HQ first. We signed in, got our ToomeyforSenate lapel stickers, and mingled. The Toomey staff looked like they were recruited from Southern Lehigh High School. Okay, maybe not, but it's amazing how young campaign staffers can look to a 52 year old. They were sharp, well-dressed, polite, and at ease. There was no real question to the race. Toomey was going to walk away with the nomination and the only excitement for the crowd was watching the TV monitors to keep up with the Sestak/Specter contest in the Democratic primary. Bobby Gunther Walsh, the conservative Allentown talk-radio guy, went to the microphone every now and then to make announcements. Bernie and I each bought a Yeungling Lager at the bar; Bernie introduced me to Bobby; and Bobby and I chatted for a bit about the joys and horrors of raising daughters.

Pat Toomey wasn't around yet, nor were any of his senior staffers. We figured the inner circle was in a suite near-by, not paying any money for their beer, and waiting for the right time to have Pat make his entrance before the crowd. When Bobby announced that Pat would probably show up within the hour, we decided to drive to the Justin Simmons HQ.

That's where the drama was. Justin's team had taken over the bar at Pacifico, a Mexican seafood restaurant in the Promenade Shops in Center Valley. When Bernie and I got there, Justin's father was outside, getting some fresh air. We all shook hands and talked a bit. Justin's campaign manager was pacing around on the sidewalk, saying things like "56 votes up". He played with his cell-phone a lot, and talked into it often. I think I heard him apologize three times to various people for the hooded sweatshirt he was wearing. He was excited, and he should have been. His candidate was winning a primary race against an incumbent that had party support. We all went into the restaurant and Jay Simmons, the candidate's father, told us to order whatever we cared for at the bar.

There were only about 20 people in the place and the majority were under thirty. I can't really describe how electric things were; I'm not that good a writer. What I remember is how everybody's eyes were shining as the reports came in, and the vote spread kept growing. Before 11:00 PM the Beyer campaign people started calling Justin and Mark, his campaign manager, on their cell phones. Justin looked cool, collected, and in charge. Just like he should have. Mark was talking into cell-phones, typing on laptops, texting into hand-helds, and generally acting like the campaign manager of a candidate in a race that was looking good but coming down to the wire. Little by little the vote spread kept growing, and when the TV showed Simmons with 1928 against Beyer with 1748 (and 97% of the vote counted) someone pointed out the spread was wider than the 5% recount threshold. Simmons took the concession call from Beyer on the sidewalk outside, in the light drizzle, with Mark at his side. We watched through the windows. Just in case we couldn't tell how the call was going from Justin's comfortable stance and smiling face, Mark helped out by jumping up and down, and pumping his fists into the air.

When they came back in, and everybody finished hugging everybody else, and shaking hands with anybody they didn't hug, Justin said some gracious words about Karen Beyer. He then thanked just about everybody in the room by name. Other short speeches happened, most of us thought of people to send text messages to, a couple toasts were made, and everybody kind of hung out and yakked for while about the general campaign. I doubt I will ever again be in the inner circle of a political campaign when the opponent calls to concede. As Bernie and I drove home, we agreed that we made the right call leaving the Toomey shindig to come to Simmons HQ. Not only was the beer free, but the show was much, much better.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

More (on) Global Warming

Glenn Knight and I are having a disagreement in the comments thread of my last post on so-called global warming (I'm embarrassed to see it's also my most recent post, period - I need to get back in the blogging saddle).

Glenn makes two statements that need addressing:

1. "(That) the evidence shows that there has been such a constant connection between man-made CO2 and global temperature change is not, I think, in much doubt."

2. "But there is no evidence whatever that anyone concocted data, suppressed data, or deliberately distorted data."

I'll deal with the second point first. I accused AGW proponents of "faking" data. I was referring specifically to the temperature "record" that purportedly shows that for the last one thousand years the earth's temperature has consistently risen in direct correlation to the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere. Let me concede immediately that I am unable to prove this accusation for reasons that any lawyer or moderately intelligent student of philosophy would find obvious. It is an editorial opinion (like calling a politician a "liar" when he reneges on a campaign promise). I believe it to be true but I could not show that the scientists at East Anglia University, with malign intent, purposely produced temperature data they knew to be "fake". However I stand behind my declaration for the following reasons. They are scientists and as such know they are to adhere to particular standards in their scientific work. The evidence is now overwhelming that they did not adhere to such standards, that they knew they were not adhering to such standards, and that they knew that they should adhere to such standards. Their emails further seem to show that they knew their failure to adhere to such standards would rightly call their work into question and they did knowingly work to prevent others from discovering the shoddiness of their work. It is not proof of fraud to a legal or philosophical certainty but it sure meets the definition of "faked" for editorial purposes.

This takes me to Glenn's first point: "that there has been such a constant connection between man-made CO2 and global temperature change". Uh, no. The scandal of global warming hysteria is that no such connection has in fact been scientifically shown. The temperature data that accurately indicates such a connection does not exist. The data set that purports to show such a connection has apparently been gathered in such a way as to be unreproducible and is therefore, by any reasonable scientific standards, unreliable. Nothing is, or can be, "proved" by unreliable data. No statistical "connection" is, or can be, shown if it is based on values whose provenance is untraceable to any legitimate source. Something is not a science if it is not based on scientific work carried out according to scientific practices. No such rigorous work seems to have been carried out in the question of the thousand-year temperature record upon which AGW belief is based. Therefore any conclusion about possible serious or even catastrophic effects of increased CO2 is not science.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Honored Above My Deserts

I am pleased and honored that Agim Zabeli has extended to me the privilege of posting as a contributor to the Two Masters blog.

I trust that Agim will have no reason to regret his generosity.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

More Global Warming, Cooling, Whatever

"NASA was able to put a man on the moon, but the space agency can't tell you what the temperature was when it did. By its own admission, NASA's temperature records are in even worse shape than the besmirched Climate-gate data."

Considering the now totally discredited "evidence" for "global warming", one would have to be a really, really true believer to have any confidence whatsoever left in this hokem "theory".

But then I think it always was a matter of faith and hysteria. These sorts of scares happen all the time in history and are usually so embarrassing that once they're over, everyone wants to forget about them. As a result, we forget to be careful about the next one as well. The new ice age didn't happen, the ozone layer must have fixed itself, and I predict that in a couple years you won't be able to find anybody that admits to "believing" in "global warming". (HT: Instapundit)

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

From the Hollywood 'Who-gives-a'shit?' file...

"Ewan Mcgregor - Mcgregor Blasts Bush And Blair Over War On Terror"

Uh, shut the f*ck up, moron. Or, to bring Plato back into it:
"But I observed that even the good artisans fell into the same error as the poets; because they were good workmen they thought that they also knew all sorts of high matters, and this defect in them overshadowed their wisdom(.)"
Just look nice for the camera, bitch, and only say the words on the script, okay? Actors. Jeesh. (HT: Big Hollywood)

Che Guevara Quote of the Day

"The Negro is indolent and spends his money on frivolities and booze, whereas the European is forward-looking, organized and intelligent."

How can anyone think this asshole was anything other than a mass-murdering, sexual-predator, pseudo-intellectual barbarian?

Che's immortal last words:

"Don’t Shoot! I’m Che! I’m worth to you more alive than dead!"


Current Reading: Greeks, Jews, and Englishmen

I'm currently reading Dicken's David Copperfield, re-reading The Clouds by Aristophanes, 1 and 2 Samuel in the Old Testament, and 1 John in the New Testament. I also recently re-read David Clammer's popular 1973 history "The Zulu War" (which is currently unavailable at both B&N and Amazon).

Aristophanes (c.455 - c. 380 B.C.) was an Athenian writer of comedies during the Peloponnesian War (the long war(s) between Athens and Sparta). I'm about half-way through the first act and there are interesting comparisons and contrasts with modern American media. One thing to note is how base and bawdy this play is. I've lost count of the number of flatulence jokes and rectal references I've already had to endure. Another thing - vis a vis the current American "culture war" - is how in-your-face this play is about expressing political positions and ridiculing, often by name, political opponents. In fact the entire premise of the play is that Socrates and his entire 'what-is-truth?' school of philosophers are a bunch of frauds and jackasses. Fun stuff.

Leftism, the Religion

Dennis Prager:
"Leftism, though secular, must be understood as a religion (which is why I have begun capitalizing it). The Leftist value system’s hold on its adherents is as strong as the hold Christianity, Judaism, and Islam have on theirs. Nancy Pelosi’s belief in expanding the government’s role in American life, which inspired her passion for the health-care bill, is as strong as a pro-life Christian’s belief in the sanctity of the life of the unborn."

Death sentence for 5 in Haryana honour killing

Now this is how "honour killings" should be dealt with! But a couple things occur to me:

First, if I interpret the names correctly the couple and caste involved are all Hindu. "Honour" killings are not exclusively a Muslim issue. They are a problem that exists in tribal and clan-based societies, of which Islam is the most familiar to us in the West.

Secondly, given the interesting political and demographic issues in India, I wonder if the court would have had the courage to sentence 5 Muslims to death if it were a Muslim honour killing rather than a Hindu killing.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Anybody know what kind of owl this is?

I went down the hill next to my house to haul some firewood out of the woods. I live in Eastern Pennsylvania. This fellow was sitting on the trunk of the fallen tree I was cutting up. He stayed there and watched me the entire time, maybe about an hour, and was still there when I left. Nervy bird.

Or maybe he figured since I was carrying heavy wood up a steep hill he should just wait to see if I had a heart attack so he could eat me.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Re-reading Plato

Recently re-read Plato's Apology of Socrates and today I re-read Crito. It's been a while.

From 'Apology':
"But I observed that even the good artisans fell into the same error as the poets; because they were good workmen they thought that they also knew all sorts of high matters, and this defect in them overshadowed their wisdom(.)"
I couldn't help but think of modern movie stars when I read that.

And from 'Crito' concerning one's duty to the government:
"And when we are punished by her, whether with imprisonment or stripes, the punishment is to be endured in silence; and if she leads us to wounds or death in battle, thither we follow as is right; neither may anyone yield or retreat or leave his rank, but whether in battle or in a court of law, or in any other place, he must do what his city and his country order him; or he must change their view of what is just(.)"
Old school stuff, that, and good stuff as well. I need to go back to reading more of the classics.

U.S. Troops to March in Red Square Parade

Is this a joke?

If this is true, I'm just not sure what to say. (HT: Powerline)

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Surviving the Undead: Zombie Guns

So what is the right gun for zombie fighting?

(HT: Jonah Goldberg at NRO's The Corner)

‘The Good Wife’ – Anybody else smell a set-up?

Updated (twice) below.

I watched the TV show The Good Wife for the first time on Monday night. It’s a cross between a law-firm melodrama (when did that become a genre?) and the now-ubiquitous, forensic-science whodunit. Generally, the ‘who’ that ‘dunit’ in any of these shows will almost always be the white, heterosexual, conservative businessman, or whichever suspect comes closest to that archetype.

A guest character, played by actor Gary Cole, was introduced in this episode. The character is a ballistics expert that works for defense lawyers and he is very, very good. He refuses to work on cases if he believes the client is guilty; he does not charge high rates; and in the episode he promptly, efficiently and decisively showed the murder could not have occurred the way the prosecution alleged. He is a ruggedly handsome, outdoorsy, together sort of fellow. You can imagine he drives a perfectly restored old pick-up truck to his log-cabin home (where he has a spotless and functional personal ballistics lab). The sexual tension between him and one of the show’s main characters (law partner Diane Lockhart, played by actress Christine Baranski) hints that we will see him again later this season.

So what is the ‘set-up’ I smell? First of all he is too perfect. You rarely have this sort of male character in modern American TV unless he, as noted above, turns out to be the murderer. It’s kind of a rule. But in this case it’s even worse than that. Did I mention our guest ballistics expert is a political conservative with a picture of Sarah Palin on his desk? Did I further mention his name is Kevin McVeigh? McVeigh. That name’s familiar, isn’t it?

‘The Good Wife’ credits list Tony and Ridley Scott as executive producers. The Scott brothers are not famous for their support of conservative issues, and to the best of my knowledge are not great fans of the former governor of Alaska. Besides Sarah Palin, there is much the modern entertainment industry cannot abide. On the list of things that must not be allowed to stand are: strong, non-dysfunctional white, heterosexual men who are blatant political conservatives and who are attractive to powerful women characters on TV shows.

My prediction is that when we see McVeigh again, he will end up being very, very weird. He will be a criminal, some sort of sexual deviant, a psychotic, or a combination of all of the above. You can’t allow guys like him to run around on TV, giving people the impression there are stable, competent, honorable, conservative men in the world.

UPDATE: See comment from Robert King. Two things come to mind: a) I would love to be completely, totally wrong, and b) who in heck is Robert King, and how does he know about this post so fast? I didn't know anybody actually read my blog.

NEW UPDATE: So I searched for "Robert King" AND "The Good Wife". He is, uh, one of the creators of the show. Wow. Robert: I'll take your word for it. You just got one more viewer for the rest of Season 2.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Jews You Can Use

I'm picturing Claude Raines playing the role of Dubai Police chief Dahi Khalfan Tamim: "Major Strasser has been shot! Round up the usual Jews!"

Okay, it wasn't Nazi Major Strasser; it was some murdering goat-herd named Mahmoud al-Mabhouh. And it wasn't the movie Casablanca, it was real life in 2010 Arabia. But the question arises: so exactly how many Jews does it take to whack a Hamas terrorist hanging out in a luxury hotel? According to recent reports it takes 27 of 'em. This is getting ridiculous. The number of suspected assassins gets much higher and this hit-team would have enough guys to suit up for an NFL game.

Oh, and did I mention maybe it wasn't the Israelis that did the deed? The Reuters article linked above reports that Hamas suspects Jordan and Egypt of what I suppose is, strictly speaking anyway, a crime. No surprise. If I remember correctly, the Mossad didn't need 27 guys to snatch Adolf Eichmann in South America. They may not make Jews as tough as they used to, but I think the children of Israel could still kill a middle-aged arms dealer in a hotel room with no more than, say, 10 or 15 guys.

It's interesting that to Dubai, America, and Europe, the Israelis were the first suspects in this plot but apparently Hamas has reasons to know better. (HT: PowerLine Blog)

Friday, February 19, 2010

Climategate: The Big Picture

Charlie Martin: "As new fraud is revealed almost daily, the full story of how the AGW scam came to pass is taking shape."

Charlie Martin is a clean and informative writer. This is a nice summation of the current state of unraveling of official "global warming" fluffing. (HT: Instapundit)

The Bank Crisis: A Perfect Storm of Ignorance

Jeffrey Friedman:
"You are familiar by now with the role of the Federal Reserve in stimulating the housing boom; the role of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in encouraging low-equity mortgages; and the role of the Community Reinvestment Act in mandating loans to "subprime" borrowers, meaning those who were poor credit risks. So you may think that the government caused the financial crisis. But you don't know the half of it. And neither does the government."
I don't know enough to know how to judge Mr. Friedman's analysis. But it seemed to make a lot of sense to me. (HT: Instapundit)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Mission Impossible? Tom Cruise, call your office.

In a violent world, you almost never see elegant coolness in assassinations:
"The 11-strong team arrived in Dubai in the early hours of Jan 19 on flights from France, Germany, Italy and Switzerland, dressed as businessmen with trolley bags and laptops and blending in perfectly with other passengers."

Sunday, February 14, 2010

About that global warming...

Here's the headline:
Climategate U-turn as scientist at centre of row admits: There has been no global warming since 1995
I've felt for years that global "warming" was a crock but it's truly amazing how fast the entire charade is falling apart. (HT: Mark Steyn at NRO's Corner)

Thursday, February 4, 2010

About those Himalayan glaciers...

Mark Steyn:
“Climate change” is not a story of climate change, which has been a fact of life throughout our planet’s history. It is a far more contemporary story about the corruption of science and “peer review” by hucksters, opportunists and global-government control-freaks.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

More on Zinn

Roger Kimball: "Contempt, in fact, was Howard Zinn’s leading characteristic. Its primary focus was America, because that was the biggest game in town. But he had plenty left over for the rest of the world."

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

I guess some people don't think much of Keith Olbermann

"Olbermann does not like women, especially attractive and/or accomplished women. Nor is he particularly fond of men. He is forever the awkward, angry teenager of his high school days who mystified psychologists, the ├╝berdork whose cruel taunts of the athletes he covered as a sports broadcaster were legendary, even as he yearned to be thought of as the stud that covers studs."
Wow. Don't sugar-coat it, brother. Tell us what you really think.

I am on the opposite end of the political spectrum from Olbermann. I don't watch his show. I hear some conservative commentators excoriate him regularly and the few video clips I've seen of Olbermann certainly seem to show a vicious fellow. But I don't know how fair the above excerpted article is.

(HT Instapundit)

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Meanwhile, in Indian/Pakistani cricket news...

Times of India:
"MUMBAI: After targeting Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan for his remarks supporting the inclusion of Pakistani cricketers in the IPL, the Shiv Sena Saturday dragged in Aamir Khan, calling the duo "2 Idiots"."
What does that mean? Well, as far as I can tell, it means a rich & famous Indian cricket team owner is getting extreme heat from other Indians because he is willing to have Pakistani players on the professional cricket team he owns.

The political Left in the U.S. tries to convince Americans we are bigoted people; we are somehow less 'tolerant' than other 'cultures'. This is the opposite of the truth. Semi-official, and even official, bigotry (religious, national, tribal, etc.) is well-entrenched and acceptable in much of the rest of the world. In my experience people in the U.S. are just about the least bigoted on the planet today.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Spitting on Howard Zinn’s Grave?

If all the fawning comments about the recently late Howard Zinn are starting to peg out your creepiness-meter, David Horowitz has got what you need to turn the dial back down.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Darn! No more secret "Jesus" codes on military optics

Weapons Company Caves to Political Correctness

"A sensationalized news story about "Jesus" codes on telescopic sights has led to Trijicon bowing to unwarranted pressure to remove them."
A couple points:

1. Why would you put the Lord's name in quotation marks when we're talking about Bible references? I don't get it.

2. If I ever get around to buying a rifle scope I will absolutely buy a Trijicon product. It's hard to blame Trijicon for removing the references when their biggest customers demand it. It was great they had the references on the products for as long as they did.

Obama's answer for America: more of me

Jonah Goldberg says it better than I do:

Obama insists that Americans need to muster the courage to agree with him, to sign on to his agenda. Just as at Omaha Beach and Bull Run, Americans need to show their mettle. "Again, we are tested. And again, we must answer history's call." That "call" is the call of Obama.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Thoughts on Christian orthodoxy

Christianity Lite, in which Mary Eberstadt considers:
"...the multifaceted institutional experiment, beginning but not ending with the Anglican Communion, of attempting to preserve Christianity while simultaneously jettisoning certain of its traditional teachings—specifically, those regarding sexual morality."
She speculates:
"Surveying the record to date of what has happened to the churches dedicated to this long-running modern religious experiment, a large historical question now appears: whether the various exercises in this specific kind of dissent from traditional teaching turn out to contain the seeds of their own destruction. The evidence—preliminary but already abundant—suggests that the answer is yes."
(HT: Kathryn Jean Lopez at NRO Corner)

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Global warming: to err is human...

IPCC deputy says scientists are 'only human'
"The UN's climate science body is under fire after being forced to retract claims that the Himalayan Glaciers would melt by 2035."
Left unsaid is the apparent fact that the 'humans' at the IPCC are craven, lying, religious zealots who happily sacrifice scientific ethics on the alter of gaea-worship. (HT: Drudge)

Update: As Charlie Martin rightly points out, where zealotry reigns, scamsters also tend to profit.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Why we read Steyn

Mark Steyn is my favorite writer of political and cultural polemics. He demonstrates his skill once again this weekend critiquing the Obama reaction to Scot Brown's victory in the Massachusetts senate race.

"Presumably, the president isn’t stupid enough actually to believe what he said. But it’s dispiriting to discover he’s stupid enough to think we’re stupid enough to believe it."

Friday, January 22, 2010

Why we read Krauthammer

"You would think lefties could discern a proletarian vanguard when they see one."
Some guys just have a way with words.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The War Against the Infidels

This issue is critically important but, since it doesn't fit the west-is-always-wrong narrative, it doesn't get nearly the recognition it needs. That is to say it's pretty much completely ignored.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Obama's War of Choice

So it just occurred to me: The economy was tanking, men were losing their jobs left and right, we had troops in the field in both Iraq and Afghanistan, and Barack Obama decided to attack the way Americans receive health care, which polls showed (and still show) Americans are by and large happy with.

So isn't the current health care debacle the result of a "war of choice" for the president?

Press Takes a New Look at Tea Parties After Brown Win

Mary Katharine Ham:
"It was disrespectful and dumb of Democrats to smear people giving voice to their worries, evincing the exact arrogance that turned voters in Massachusetts away from Martha Coakley."
Just so, as far as it goes. One could add that using code-terms to publicly call your critics homosexual testicle-suckers is probably not too sharp a move either.

(HT: Instapundit)

Monday, January 18, 2010

U.S. Military Weapons Inscribed With Secret 'Jesus' Bible Codes

Seriously. As you can imagine, the usual suspects go buggy.

Personally I'm tickled. To paraphrase the joke about the pastor at ringside: it doesn't mean a thing if the guy can't shoot.

(HT: Drudge)

Iraq WMD thoughts: a useful reminder

"We had an assumption, and we had that assumption because Saddam Hussein had lied about using WMD and he had lied about getting rid of them. We had bombed Iraq in 1998 on that basis and it would have taken some quite strong evidence to suggest he had got rid of them.

"We didn't really have any doubts about it and I don't think other people had any doubts about it."

That made the British view the same as the American view, the German view, the Israeli view, the Russian and Saudi views, etc., etc.

Unless of course you suffer from BDS, in which case it was all about Bush lying.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

So why is it classified?

So, why is the report about the Detroit/Northwest bomber "classified"? We decided to put the guy in the civilian court system so we will have to give all the information to him and his lawyer anyway, right?

Friday, January 1, 2010

Proverbs 27:18

He who tends a fig tree will eat its fruit,
and he who looks after his master will be honored.
I've been unemployed for a while and it's given me time to think, often too much time. One good thing is I am spending more time reading the Bible ( Speaking of "clinging to God and guns" I need to renew my concealed carry permit this month). Part of my routine is reading one chapter a day from the Book of Proverbs. Every Sunday I select a memory verse from that day's chapter. 27:18 is the verse I picked last Sunday.

The verse hits me because half of it is so intuitively obvious ("He who tends a fig tree will eat its fruit...") while the second half is much less so in our current age ("...and he who looks after his master will be honored.") We don't think in terms of having masters these days but when one considers the matter the guy who said everybody has to serve somebody was right on target. The only question is who or what do we each pick for our master: career? company? family? God? money?

We all serve something. We should choose wisely and serve well.