Watcher’s Council winners for April 9, 2015

No, April 9 is not a typo.  I managed to fall seriously behind in keeping you apprised of events at the Watcher’s Council.  Still, it’s never too late to let you know about the good stuff that goes on there.  The winners, placers, and showers that week were:

The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast, and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match up.

“Yes, death to the Great Satan” – Ayatollah Khomeini leading crowds in anti-American chants just over a week ago.

“Peace is purchased from strength. It’s not purchased from weakness or unilateral retreats.” – Benyamin Netanyahu

If he being Young And Unskillful seeks to gamble for silver and gold/ Take his money my son praising Allah! The fool was made to be sold! -Renowned Persian poet Hafiz, 14th century CE

I believe Herr Hitler is a man whose word can be relied on.” - Neville Chamberlain, 1938

This week’s winning essay by a nose,Joshuapundit’s -Munich II examines President Obama’s so-called ‘framework’ of his nuclear agreement with Iran. As we nowknow, our president was not exactly being honest with the American people in that speech in the Rose Garden! So what’s the actual motivation behind his apparent desperation to achieve some kind of deal..something the Iranians are happily taking advantage of. Here’s a slice:

[Read more...]

Guest Post: Trigger-warnings mean people must remain victimized forever (by guest blogger Lulu)

Gillibrand on Fake Accusations of RapeAs a mental health professional, I find the storms raging at Georgetown and Oberlin University regarding Christina Hoff Sommers’ visit and speech as “triggering” and traumatizing to be beyond bizarre. My objective as a mental health professional is to empower people, to enable them to overcome trauma in order to live as fully as possible, to not be burdened by symptoms of depression or anxiety and to not let the entirety of their lives be dictated by a single trauma or even multiple traumas.

Do trigger-warning, safe-room advocates at colleges not believe that it betters people to overcome pain and move on, or is it truly their belief that no one, at any time, must ever expose a traumatized person to an opinion that differs from theirs on “triggering” topics in case they may become upset? It is impossible to control the world in such a way.

Perhaps the attempt to protect one set of victims by silencing or cancelling speakers may actually be “triggering” to another group of people, such as those individuals who have personally been victims of totalitarianism, kangaroo courts or punitive re-education, who are reminded of the fear brought about by not being allowed to voice their opinions and hear diverse viewpoints or face political prison. Is there a safe place on campus for those students who are re-traumatized by the attempt to shut down speakers or demand only “correct” speech?

People who have been in car accidents may be “triggered” by traffic or certain types of cars. People who have been mugged may be “triggered” by people resembling the attacker or by certain streets. People who have been at war may be “triggered” by the news or certain sounds. People can be reminded of loss by a song, a phone call, a book—in fact, by anything. Everyone who lives has faced loss and trauma of some sort. The longer we live the more loss or trauma we experience due to deaths of loved ones or other challenges. Some people have had substantially more than their fair share of trauma.

[Read more...]

Reparations?! Again!?

Slavery in AfricaIt appears that Barack Obama and his cronies may be set to put reparations for slavery back on the national agenda. I don’t have anything to say on the subject, but that’s not because I don’t have strong opinions. It just that, a few years ago, in a post as current today as it was then, Wolf Howling said exactly what I would have said if I could think and write as well as he does.

Where has the Bookworm been hiding?

Depressed faceI have a friend with whom I talk a lot via email. My letters of late have been banal. I haven’t wanted to inflict that banality on all of you, so I simply haven’t blogged much in the past few days. I’ll share with you the apology I sent my friend to explain my inability to comment on current events:

I fear that I’ve been letting you down with my letters lately. My life for the past few days has been intensely domestic, in part because there’s so much that needs doing. I’m also getting to the point at which I’m a little afraid to open Drudge or another site.

Do you remember in the days after 9/11 waiting for the other shoe to drop? I know that, for a couple of years after that, I daily expected some other horrible mass terrorist attack, not just in Madrid or London, but in America again. I was reminded of the risks every time I crossed the Golden Gate Bridge, since there was a police presence there for years looking for trucks that might be carrying bombs.

And then I started thinking, “I guess it won’t happen here because we’re engaging them there.” When talking heads got upset about the way Islamists from the world over were flocking to Iraq, my thought was, “At least they’re collecting themselves in one place so that we can dispose of them more easily.”

Even when Obama pulled out of Iraq completely, I envisioned a pallid retreat from success, rather than a rapid descent into unbearable evil — and, moreover, a spreading evil. Obama’s governance, which has seen large parts of the world collapse economically or plunge into wars of exceptional ferocity, exceeded anything I could have imagined an American president doing.

Yes, we knew Obama would hurt the economy, but who imagined a 7 year “recession”” Yeah, we knew he wanted America to retreat, but who knew that he’d embrace policies that left utter disarray in America’s wake? Obama is worse than I ever imagined he could be, and it’s clear that he’s poised to do still more damage in the two years remaining.

An Irish conservative friend of mine believed that America could never become a totalitarian state because it wasn’t in the American nature. The last few years, however, with the spreading poison of fascistic political correctness and increasing anti-Semitism (which Obama is trying to politicize, by making Republicans pro-Israel and Democrats anti-Israel) may have fundamentally changed too much of the American character for us to walk this one back.

The headline I tried to avoid today said that Obama is now going to push for reparations for American blacks. In other words, Obama’s race wars continue.

I keep hoping that some Deus Ex Machina will emerge suddenly and change the plot in the tragedy we’re currently enacting. I keep wondering if, two years from now, rather than having an election that leads to a turnaround, I’ll look back on these days and realize that, no matter how frustrating and sad they often were for me, they were, in fact, the last “best days of my life.” I no longer worry that my kids won’t enjoy the same high standard of living I clawed my way up to. I worry that they’ll end up in some Mumbai-esque squalor or some Damascus-style post-apocalyptic Civil War.

And I worry that too many people are worrying about the wrong thing. It’s not anthropogenic climate change that’s going to get us; it’s internal rot and external enemies. As went Rome, so will go the West again.

So, the reason I haven’t dazzled you with my intellectual acumen regarding world events is because that part of my brain dedicated to current events has been taken over by a dystopian horror novel that I’m trying hard not to read. Under the circumstances, it’s easier to clean out closets and babble to friends about my success in that narrow domestic arena.

The Bookworm Beat 4-18-15 — the illustrated edition and open thread

Today is the 109th anniversary of the San Francisco earthquake.  I have no reason for mentioning this other than that I thought you might like to know.

A friend other than my dear Caped Crusader sent me this awesome collection of political cartoons.  I don’t know if he wants me to mention his name, but my thanks do go out to him.  (You know who you are.)  One thing:  I’m not sure if it’s my vision or if these are all slightly blurry.  If the latter, don’t let that deter you from enjoying them:

Pearl Harbor a limited air strike not an act of war

Obama worst president ever

[Read more...]

The Bookworm Beat 4-17-15 — the “green hair day” edition and open thread

Woman writingI went to get my hair done today, which is usually a relaxed and peaceful time.  Today, as usual, my hairdresser and I were talking about our respective children, when he suddenly stopped and said, “Have you been swimming?”

That question sure came out of left field. “No,” I responded. “Why?” The answer was a surprise: “Because all your gray hair is green.”

What?!!!! I hadn’t noticed that because I seldom look at myself that closely in the mirror. No one in my family had noticed it because they seldom look at me at all. But there it was: a bilious shade of green in place of my normal skunk stripe, as well as all the other swathes and patches of gray decorating my hair. I have no idea why this happened, but it did.

Gray hair doesn’t bother me; green hair does. I do not like having green hair. Its presence explains why my face had looked peculiarly flushed lately — the green highlighted the red tones in my usually pale face. Just as green is not a good hair shade for me, parboiled isn’t a good color for my face.

After much debate with his colleagues about the best way to handle this unusual problem, my hairdresser decided to go darker, because a tint would cover the green without turning my hair into over-processed straw. The result is that I have sort of reddish-brown hair that’s too dark for my tastes but that I have been assured will fade rather rapidly while at the same time (everyone hopes) still hiding the green.

The whole thing took way too long, although the haircut, as always, is perfection. This matters, because I have hair that can prove challenging to hair stylists. Finding one who is a really nice person and a superb stylist means putting up with an unexpectedly long time in the chair.

My plan today was to get home around midday, call a client, work on several legal projects, and blog. That didn’t happen. After the endless hair appointment, I had to rendezvous with the kids to take care of all sorts of unexpected “we must do it today” chores. It’s 4:15 and I’ve only just walked in. Still, I have much that I want to share with you, so you’ll get a good Friday evening, instead of a good Friday midday, read.

We can kill our way to victory against Islamists

This is an older Daniel Greenfield post, but one that I think still deserves reading. Greenfield’s point is a simple one, which is that it is possible to defeat an enemy by killing so many of his troops that there is no one left to fight, or no one left who is willing to fight (which probably means the same). Anybody, of course, can state a simple principle. Daniel Greenfield’s gift is that he can expand upon it with facts and analysis in a completely compelling way.

[Read more...]

Hillary “Carter” Clinton — or the story of a suitcase

The big banner headline on Drudge today told about Hillary making like the little people by flying coach back to her mansion and carrying her own suitcase.  Here’s the tweet that started the story:

Hillary and her suitcase

Hmmmm. Where have I heard that story before?  Oh, wait!  I know (emphasis added):

As outlined in my [Ronald Kessler's] book “In the President’s Secret Service: Behind the Scenes with Agents in the Line of Fire and the Presidents They Protect,” Democratic presidents who claim like Olbermann to be for the little guy often are the nastiest with staff and Secret Service agents. Jimmy Carter — codenamed Deacon — was a prime example.


For three and a half years, agent John Piasecky was on Carter’s detail — including seven months of driving him in the presidential limousine — and Carter never spoke to him, he says. At the same time, Carter tried to project an image of himself as a man of the people by carrying his own luggage when traveling. But that was often for show. When he was a candidate in 1976, Carter would carry his own bags when the press was around but ask the Secret Service to carry them the rest of the time.

“Carter would have us carry his luggage from the trunk to the airport,” says former Secret Service agent John F. Collins. “But that is not our job, and we finally stopped doing it.” On one occasion, says Collins, “We opened the trunk and shut it, leaving his luggage in the trunk. He was without clothes for two days.”

As president, Carter engaged in more ruses involving his luggage.

“When he was traveling, he would get on the helicopter and fly to Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base,” says former Secret Service agent Clifford R. Baranowski. “He would roll up his sleeves and carry his bag over his shoulder, but it was empty. He wanted people to think he was carrying his own bag.”

Even when Hillary tries to be one of the little people, she’s a fake and a phony. I’m willing to bet that the suitcase she was carrying was just as heavily packed as the bag Carter slung over his shoulders back in the day at Andrews Air Force Base.

Watcher’s Council nominations for April 15, 2015

My apologies for the dead air today at my site. I was chasing one deadline after another and, here it is, 9:30 at night, and I’m only just sitting down to review this week’s Watcher’s Council nominations. They are every bit as good as always so, in my absence, you could do a lot worse than to read them. (I’ll be back tomorrow, probably around noon my time because — yay! — I’m getting my hair done after almost four months. I look like Don King tonight, but tomorrow I’ll look svelte and chic.)

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere, and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere, and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

[Read more...]