Last gasp of the old media *UPDATED*

Do you think it’s coincidence that the Sunday before Prop. 8 formally goes before California voters, the SF Chron runs an article about a lesbian couple’s wedding that would be perfectly suitable for a saccharine Barbara Cartland romance?  I probably wouldn’t have noticed or cared about this little subliminal push for its readers to vote with the liberal agenda if I hadn’t read this on the same day I learned that the Chron suppressed information about Obama’s boast that he was going to bankrupt the American coal industry.

I’m glad those two women found happiness together, and I have no problem with giving them civil recognition as a couple, with all the legal benefits and burdens that entails.  However, let’s just not pretend that this civil recognition is marriage, a pretense that will have two horrible side effects:  (a) it will insert the government into religion, which is precisely what the Founders most feared and (b) it is a slippery slope that inevitably (no brakes) opens the door for Muslim polygamy, not to mention some less savory practices such as polyandry and bestiality (or, if you’re in Japan, marriage to cartoon characters).

UPDATE:  Thanks to Rockdalian for bringing to my attention the story that the Chronicle isn’t telling in the days leading up to a vote on Prop. 8:  namely, the fact that the California school system is sitting on its hands in the face of a teacher who gave kindergartners a form to fill out supporting Gay and Lesbian rights.

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  • Charles Martel


    It’s funny you bring this topic up right now. Today marks a week since I totally quit reading the Chronicle. I finally had had enough aggravation plowing through badly written and reasoned, leftist boilerplate.

    (The only exception I’ve made is Opus, which ends forever today.)

    My wife continues reading the rag. Force of habit, I think. She’s a Hillary Democrat who saw firsthand what “objective” journalists do when they get the command to attack.

    But now that’s she’s reconciled herself to Obama, she’s back to thinking she’s reading actual news.


  • Mike Devx

    >> But now that’s she’s reconciled herself to Obama, she’s back to thinking she’s reading actual news. >>

    The sad story of the addict! Oh, those mellifluous tones, that hypnotic cadence! The uplifted chin, those eyes, those eyes! “I’ll just listen to one speech. Just one! I know I can handle it.”

    And next thing you know, the “news” has once again become The Truth; and she, who for so brief a time could see for herself, has been roped back into the herd.

  • rockdalian

    This story on Fox News does not seem to be getting a lot of attention.

    School Clams Up on ‘Gay’ Pledge Cards Given to Kindergartners

    A California school system refuses to say what action, if any, it will take after it received complaints about a kindergarten teacher who encouraged her students to sign “pledge cards” in support of gays.,2933,445865,00.html

    I have come to the belief that, as far as the state is concerned, all marriages should be civil unions.
    As to the religious, they are free to have their union blessed as marriage by a church.

  • wheels3953

    So, I read about your blog in the IJ today and was curious about it. In the interests of full disclosure, I’m definitely of the left-leaning variety. But I happen to believe that everyone has a right to their opinions and beliefs and that folks whose personal values shape their political opinions can have civilized discussions and agree to disagree. It is too bad that you feel like you need to hide your political persuasion in Marin. Frankly, I have liberal friends in Dallas who experience the same thing on the other side, so it is, unfortunately, not unique and can be explained by human nature–people generally like to associate with those who think the same way they do because many people like to avoid conflict.

    That being said, I’m going to disagree with some of your recent posts that I read today. I’ll start with the one about Obama planning to bankrupt the coal industry. First off, I am going to make a point that I believe applies to both sides of the political discourse. That YouTube audio, like so many others out there, was clearly edited to make a point. For example, I did not get to hear the question that was asked of Obama, and its clear mid-way through that a second part of the conversation was spliced into the first. So, what did I miss there? But, that aside, what I heard was this. There is a need to reduce carbon emissions (you can agree or disagree with this but that is a premise here). *Most* coal-based processes for generating electricity are extremely dirty. There are certainly newer technologies for reducing this, and it truly does depend, for example, on the chemical make-up of the coal being used, but by and large, it is a dirty fuel. Ok, so, we need to reduce carbon emissions, so we come up with this so called cap-and-trade system. It incents producers to create less polluting ways to generate electricity (or pay extra for it) while others can trade their pollution credits by creating clean electricity. That is the theory anyway. It is in place in countries outside the US and has had mixed results, but it is an approach. What I heard in that audio is that Obama would create such a system to make it prohibitively expensive for a *new* coal-fired power plant that generates large amounts of pollution to be able to operate, because they would have to pay for so many pollution credits. That is all I heard in there. I didn’t hear a “Plan to bankrupt the coal industry” and indeed both Obama and McCain have talked about the need for encouraging so-called “clean” coal technologies.

    2nd, on your post on Prop 8, you are of course entitled to your views on this, but where you lost me was in the following: “it will insert the government into religion, which is precisely what the Founders most feared and (b) it is a slippery slope that inevitably (no brakes) opens the door for Muslim polygamy, not to mention some less savory practices such as polyandry and bestiality”

    First off, I agree with government staying out of religion just as much as I believe in religion staying out of government, but its not clear why a vote one way or the other would not do either. 2nd, you are going to have to explain to me how a yes vote on this is a slippery slope towards “Muslim polygamy” (not even sure what that is and how about Mormon polygamy?) or bestiality. That sounds awful extremist and fear-mongering to me and it is no better than some on the left claiming that a vote for McCain is a vote for fascism.

    Anyway, that’s what I think.

  • Bookworm

    Good questions, wheels:

    1. Re Obama: You’re right, it was taken out of context, but there was enough context for those who understand cap and trade talk, to appreciate that Obama meant what he said: in the interests of the environment, he does want to destroy America’s coal industry. You’re also right that coal is dirty. Given coal’s enormous energy potential, and the fact that America is blessed with massive amounts of the stuff, the trick isn’t to destroy the industry, it’s to harness ingenuity and technology to clean the stuff up. But Obama is a punitive, not a creative thinker.

    2. Re Prop. 8: Prop. 8 inserts the state into religion because redefining marriages means that religious organizations that believe that religion is strictly a male/female relationship will be forced to perform marriages or face punitive measures from the state. In other words, the state view on marriage will be imposed on religions. That’s precisely what the Founders feared. As long as the state and civil society walked hand in hand on the basic premise of marriage — it’s a boy/girl thing — there was no problem. This parting of ways, though, means that religions are acting discriminatorily if they refuse to perform gay unions.

    As for the polygamy thing, once you start peeling away the uniqueness of marriage — one man, one woman — you’ve opened a door for anything goes discussions. In Muslim countries, marriage is one man, many women. If we’ve conceded that our definition is wrong and limited, why shouldn’t theirs apply? And this isn’t fantasy. In England, Muslim marriages performed overseas are fully recognized for welfare purposes and Muslims are putting pressure on the government to allow polygamous marriage. It’s not a problem here with Mormons because mainstream Mormons are completely committed to traditional marriage, but there’s no doubt that the polygamists will be happy if Prop. 8 fails. As for polyandry, that’s already happening in Holland. And as for bestiality, Peter Singer, ethics chair at Princeton, thinks it’s a fine thing so long as the animals consent. (And that’s not a joke either. You can find his thoughts on the subject if you google them.)

    Thank you for your recognition that everyone should have a say in polite political discourse. Incidentally, I lived in a red state when I was still blue, and never felt hostility. I was treated as misguided but not evil. Here, people are often treated as evil, and it’s very daunting to open oneself up to that kind of thing.

  • BrianE

    Here’s a transcript of the portion of the interview with the SF Chronicle.

    Let me sort of describe my overall policy.

    What I’ve said is that we would put a cap and trade system in place that is as aggressive, if not more aggressive, than anybody else’s out there.

    I was the first to call for a 100% auction on the cap and trade system, which means that every unit of carbon or greenhouse gases emitted would be charged to the polluter. That will create a market in which whatever technologies are out there that are being presented, whatever power plants that are being built, that they would have to meet the rigors of that market and the ratcheted down caps that are being placed, imposed every year.

    So if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can; it’s just that it will bankrupt them because they’re going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that’s being emitted.

    That will also generate billions of dollars that we can invest in solar, wind, biodiesel and other alternative energy approaches.

    The only thing I’ve said with respect to coal, I haven’t been some coal booster. What I have said is that for us to take coal off the table as a ideological matter as opposed to saying if technology allows us to use coal in a clean way, we should pursue it.

    So if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can.

    It’s just that it will bankrupt them.”

    I haven’t listened to the tape, and assume this is accurate.
    On nuclear power, Sen. Obama says he’s open to expanding nuclear energy, which now provides 20% of the nation’s electricity, as part of an effort to increase power sources that emit little or no carbon dioxide. But he also has said there is no future for expanded nuclear energy until the U.S. comes up with a safe, long-term solution for disposing of nuclear waste. He opposes the Bush administration’s plan for storing waste at Yucca Mountain in Nevada.
    This according to a WSJ article.

    Democrats are never going to allow any expansion of the use of fossil fuels even in a transition period while we invent new sources of energy. Obama has been bought by the ethanol lobby, which is possible the worst solution to alternative fuels we could come up with.
    We are funding the people that want to destroy us with our dependance on foreign oil, but we are not going to increase domestic production under democrat control, because they are ideologically beholden to the left on this issue.

  • rockdalian

    Perhaps this will help.

    Sen. Barack Obama fielded questions on a variety of topics in a meeting with The Chronicle’s editorial board Thursday, Jan. 17 at the the St. Francis Hotel. Duration: 53 min.

    For some reason I cannot get the video to play, so I am assuming this is the same interview where the audio came from.


    “The only thing I’ve said with respect to coal, I haven’t been some coal booster. What I have said is that for us to take coal off the table as a ideological matter as opposed to saying if technology allows us to use coal in a clean way, we should pursue it.

    So if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can.

    It’s just that it will bankrupt them.”

    The audio is from an interview Obama gave with the San Fransisco Gate, in Jan. 2008.


    Q: How do you convince people to change their lifestyles, to live differently, or to turn the question on its ear, are voters ahead of the politicians on this stuff? Do they get it, and maybe the politicians don’t?

    A: Well, I think, uh, I think voters do understand it. I think it is important for us to send some price signals to change behavior.

    Iowa Public Television
    November 2007

    The link is to the video of Obama saying this.

    Obama calls for ‘clean energy’ nation

    The three main components of Obama’s plan are:

    — Get 1 million 150 mile-per-gallon plug-in hybrids on U.S. roads within six years.

    — Require that 10 percent of U.S. energy comes from renewable sources by the end of his first term – more than double the current level.

    —Reduce U.S. demand for electricity 15 percent by 2020.

  • Mike Devx

    >> On nuclear power, Sen. Obama says he’s open to expanding nuclear energy >>

    Brian, I believe Obama has in truth only said he would “look at” constructing new nuclear energy power plants. In the Obama universe where word parsing is an art form, there is a world of difference between “look at” and “be open to”.

    Quite frankly, the definition of “look at” in Obamaland is: No way in hell is this going to happen if I’m President. But the average American voter only hears the smooth words and thinks, “Gee, this fellow really is incredibly reasonable. I guess all that radical stuff and Ayers and Wright stuff is a bunch of hooey.”

    On the other hand, I only recently saw an article that said that nuclear power plants are heavily subsidized. If they’re such a good idea, why in fact are they subsidized? That was a bitter blow to me to read that; I still haven’t been able to determine how true the statement was. Just as with solar power, wind power, etc, if it requires subsidies via taxation, I’m not for it.

    Unless someone presents a wonderful compelling argument, that is…

  • rockdalian
  • BrianE

    The argument is this. Whatever the cost, we have to break the backs of the OPEC cartel, which is using our own dollars to destroy us. We should have done it in the 80’s, after the embargo.
    Notice Obama is against expanding nuclear production until a safe storage plan that doesn’t include Yucca Mountain– since Reid is opposed to it.
    I think we have a safe long-term solution– glassification.
    But this is why no new nuclear plants will be built. This is a 2005 article:

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s (NRC) recent order categorizing depleted uranium as “low-level” radioactive waste does not solve the waste disposal problems of a multinational consortium that wants to build a nuclear fuel plant in southeastern New Mexico, said citizens’ groups Public Citizen and the Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS). The groups today filed a motion in their pending case against Louisiana Energy Services (LES)—the company seeking a license to build the plant—maintaining that the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) does not have the capacity to accept LES’s waste for processing and disposal. NRC rules require LES to come up with a “plausible strategy” for the disposition of the depleted uranium waste that would be produced by its plant. One of the disposal strategies identified by LES is transfer to the DOE. But U.S. law requires depleted uranium to be classified as “low-level” radioactive waste by the NRC as a necessary condition for DOE to take the waste.

    “Simply calling this waste ‘low-level’ does not change the fact that the DOE has its hands full with its own waste—more than 700,000 metric tons of it that will take at least 25 years to process,” said Wenonah Hauter, director of Public Citizen’s energy program. “LES still has no plausible strategy to dispose of this waste.”

    The groups further allege that the DOE has a poor track record when it comes to radioactive waste disposal, citing the department’s failure to meet the terms of the Nuclear Waste Policy Act, which require it to establish a national high-level waste repository and accept utilities’ irradiated nuclear fuel for disposal. The DOE has yet to even submit an application to the NRC for a proposed repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada.

    Environmentalists oppose Yucca Mountain, so the DOE has no place to store “low-level” radioactive waste. Since the consortium has no place to strategy to dipose of the waste, the plant can’t be built.

  • Charles Martel

    Mike Devx,

    It’s like what I told my wife when she caught me oogling a neighbor’s garage calendar decorated with girls who were letting their naughty parts show.

    “Sweetums, I was only looking at the photos. No way was I open to them!”

    (She’s voting for Obama, so she believed me.)

  • BrianE

    This from Hillbuzz:
    Three things the Obamedia will do to depress Republican turnout and help Obama

    If you do just ONE THING today, we ask you a personal favor: PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE go to as many Republican blogs as you can and WARN THEM that the Obamedia will tell you all weekend that Obama is winning Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Florida, Iowa, Virginia, West Virginia, and other states we do not believe Obama will win (except for Iowa, which we still think goes to Obama, but our best sources claim McCain now leads in internals by 1 point). They are already starting to say truly crazy things like “Obama will win Louisiana and Arkansas!”, and that’s just nuts. That is your equivalent of the Obamedia swearing up and down that the Kennedys and Oprah would win Massachusetts and California for Obama. WE knew that was pure cockamamie nonsense, but Eeyores wet their pants on cue over this. So, the Obamedia’s marching orders are to freak all of you out with SHOCKING DEVELOPMENTS! in Lousiana, Arkansas, Georgia, etc. just to shake your faith and confidence.

    This is like in Little League when the opposing team would chant, “Hey batta hey batta hey batta hey batta hey batta sa-weeeeeeeeeng batta” when you were at the plate, to make you swing too soon or too late. Just to psych you out. And that nonsense actually worked on Team Hillary, because we lost a lot of volunteers who Eeyored off the face of the Earth just before Super Tuesday, so convinced of unprecedented blow-out doom.

    So, when you see the Obamedia doing all of this to McCain, please know they are crying wolf again. Don’t let that demoralize you!

    What an election this is! I’m taking advice from a Hillary website.
    They also talk about Obama trolls.

  • Mike Devx

    BrianE #12
    >> They also talk about Obama trolls. >>

    That’s why I had to raise the question (several times) about Ozzie being potentially a paid Axelrod concern troll.

    From Wikipedia:
    The concern troll posts in web forums devoted to its declared point of view and attempts to sway the group’s actions or opinions while claiming to share their goals, but with professed “concerns”. The goal is to sow fear, uncertainty and doubt within the group.

    The Axelrod effort has tried to be sophisticated but sometimes the mask slips, just as Obama’s mask sometimes slips. There was another blog a few weeks back that had two concern trolls operating in tandem – ganging up, apparently independently of each other, on the same blog. The blog site owner published their internet address – the SAME subnet mask, from Chicago. They were both working from the same Axelrod office.

    Ozzie sometimes offers a reasonable amount of her own opinion; usually it is long cut and pastes of other articles. In each of all of these such comments, the comment consists of a large amount of negative information. Then Ozzie issues a demoralizing sentence at the end, such as “The Republican party has become unsupportable by any reasonable person”, or “The conservative movement as we know it is dead,” or, “The nomination of Sarah Palin is the end of any possible vote for Republicans, at least those with a brain.” This all follows the concern troll formula to a Perfect T.

    A concern troll will raise issues and never offer a solution. If you propose a solution and ask for an opinion, your offer will be ignored, and a larger article will be posted that ignores your proposal as well. Again, Ozzie follows this paradigm to a Perfect T.

    Hopefully this will change. And it doesn’t mean Ozzie is a concern troll, because it is a correlation and not cause and effect proof. But the Axelrod concern troll effort is real and is out there, and as with any Axelrod effort, you can expect it to be well-funded and pervasive.

  • Bookworm

    Interesting thought, Mike. Fortunately, you guys are like the Turks of old: you can’t be brainwashed. If Ozzie is indeed a concern troll, let her spin her wheels here rather than at another site where she might, in a negative way, make a difference.

  • Danny Lemieux

    Obama’s slams against the coal industry are interesting because both (downstate) Illinois and Pennsylvania are significant coal producers.

    Downstate Illinoisians absolutely HATE the Chicago crowd (with good reason). Also, coal is produced in Eastern Pennsylvania, where Obama support is strongest, not Western Pennsylvania, which has already been denigrated as redneck-rube country by both Murtha and Obama.

    MikeD – your reference to tandem trolling is spot-on — we noticed that same interplay between DG and dagon recently and wondered how they could throw so much mud against the wall with endless energy, if you recall. Sounds as if we called them out correctly.

  • Charles Martel

    As far as concern trolls go, Ozzie is perhaps one of the most incoherent ones I’ve ever read.

    Anybody who can seriously assert that the real political tension these days is between “authoritarianism and libertarianism,” then immediately declare that Kucinich and Nader are [leftist] libertarians is somebody who has gone completely around the bend.

    I find that concern trolls vastly underestimate the intelligence of right-wing crypto-fascists like us. Not only can we write in English, we can think in it, too.