Thought processing plant

I’ve got a lot of inchoate thoughts wandering around in my brain this morning, so I thought I’d share with you the links that fascinate me — and you shouldn’t be surprised if some of them morph into full blown posts later.

Many, many years ago, when Holland had just legalized euthanasia and there was a heavy duty debate about the subject going on in America, I heard a Dutch doctor on the radio.  I can’t quote him precisely, but he said something along the lines of “I would never allow euthanasia in a country that doesn’t have socialized medicine and elder care, because there would be too much incentive for family members to get rid of someone old, ill and expensive.”  He was right, of course.  What he didn’t realize is that, in socialized countries, precisely the same incentive exists — it’s just that the incentive exists in the mind of a state that doesn’t make even the pretense of loving that old, ill and costly person.  And sometimes, the incentive simply lies in the hands of those with the power to kill, as happened in socialized Belgium.

Y’all know how I love “matched set” stories.  Today’s matched set comes from Britain’s Daily Mail, a total rag that’s usually 24 hours ahead of every other news outlet when it comes to real stories.  It was the Daily Mail that first reported on Prince Charles’ asinine statement that the world’s true environmentalists are the Islamists.  (By the way, it’s statements such as this one that lend credence to long-standing rumors that Charles is a convert to Islam.)  Charles’ doctrinal idiocy doesn’t deserve much consideration, but he is right as a practical matter that many of the desert Muslim kingdoms don’t put much industrial pressure on their environments.  This isn’t because they’re Gaia worshipers.  Instead, it happens because their religion ensures that their people live lives right out of the pre-Industrialized medieval era.

But I promised you a match set, didn’t I?  So, speaking of the medieval mindset of the Islamists, here’s an appalling story about the Taliban executing a 7 year old boy (let me repeat:  they executed a 7 year old boy) for being a spy.  Hamid Karzai was very appropriately outraged, but I wonder how many other citizens in that Muslim land were.  In other words, while Charles is bloviating about Muslims respecting the environment, he might turn his attention to the fact that they have very little respect for their fellow man (or child).

Let me wrap up with a couple more depressing links, and then I’ll leave you with something a bit more uplifting.  Depressing link Number One is a post that nicely explains what we all know:  Helen Thomas’ loathsome antisemitic outbreak is all of a piece with American Progressivism.  As my mother might say, “these are not nice people.”  (Although, thankfully, some people on the American Left are figuring it out.)  Depressing link Number Two is Zombie’s astute take on the California elections.  I really love where I live.  I have a wonderful house, in a wonderful neighborhood, in a wonderful town, but my state as a whole is dying, a victim of slow suicide.

Okay, enough of the depressing stuff.  Here’s something lovely:  a Steve Schippert essay about his home town, a small town in Illinois.  Steve commented in an email that he’s not sure the post really has a place on his blog, Threats Watch, but I think he’s dead wrong.  His post is a reminder that we guard against threats precisely to preserve the essence that is America.  If we don’t understand what we’re protecting, why should we bother?

If you’d like to post here, consider this an open thread, while I organize my thoughts.

Be Sociable, Share!
  • suek

    Urgent mandatory read.  This was inevitable, and today it’s Massachusetts, tomorrow the rest of the USA?

  • Spartacus

    Matched sets and open threads… must either be some sort of a tailor shop reference or… time for A Tale of Two Speeches, one in 1914, and the other in 2010.  (Yeah, it’s ten days old.  Sorry for the slow reflexes.)

  • Spartacus

    Uh, make that 1912.  No idea what possessed me to type 1914.

  • withouthavingseen

    Islam is a religion of peace…  Islam is a religion of peace…  Islam is a religion of peace…  Islam is a religion of peace…  Islam is a religion of peace…  Islam is a religion of peace…  Islam is a religion of peace…  Islam is a religion of peace…  Islam is a religion of peace…  Islam is a religion of peace…  Islam is a religion of peace… 

    Say it enough and maybe it will be true, or at least people will believe it.

  • kali

    Islam is a religion with a great deal of money  . . . . Islam is a religion with a great deal of money  . . . . Islam is a religion with a great deal of money  . . . .
    Prince Charles may have a genuine sympathy for Islam, but money can buy quite a few tongue-baths.  Just ask all the academics and diplomats and lobbyists and media outlets who suck at the Saudi money teat.

  • Charles Martel

    I was going to gloat about those spineless Europeans, and how the heir to Europe’s greatest monarchy is a despicable dhimmi.

    Then I remembered that the president of the United States of America, formerly the greatest nation on earth, is also a dhimmi.

    Please, God, I want to gloat again!

  • David Foster

    I don’t understand Zombie’s hostility toward Meg Whitman. Yeah, she made a lot of money…note that point, *made* a lot of money, not inherited it or manipulated government policy to get it.
    Carly Fiorina another matter; a lot of people think her tenure at HP was marked by arrogance and emotional tone-deafness. But I’d vote for a boxer *dog* before I’d vote for *Barbara* Boxer.

  • Bookworm

    I do not know why I can’t warm up to Whitman — or, wait, maybe I do.  And it goes for Fiorina too.  They both have a carpetbagger smell about them.  People who cared nothing about politics and are using, not their commitment, but their money to jump in.  Everyone has to start somewhere, but I’m always less than thrilled with wealthy dilettantes than with real grass roots people.

  • Charles Martel

    I’m with Book about not being able to warm up to either. But, since I am known among my social set as the “Un-Chris,” I don’ need no stinkin’ tingle up my gam before I’ll vote for somebody.

    Besides, look at Jerry and Babs: Am I alone in thinking that Jerry’s honker looks like Nosferatu’s? Or that Babs’ haggard look means she’s down to her three reserve brain cells?  

  • expat

    Book, that Schippert piece was beautiful. Thanks for the link.  I have  the same sorts of feelings toward my hometown.
    As to Whitman and Fiorino,  it is strange the way the have both jumped into the scene, but maybe that will allow them to operate more freely and make some changes. Right now, California seems to need someone who can shake things up just as Palin did with the old concepts of feminism.

  • suek

    I’m pretty much with Book on this one.  I read a report about Fiorina indicating early connections with Islam that bother me, but I’d vote for nearly anyone to get Boxer out.  If Fiorina doesn’t work out,  she’ll hopefully be easier to get out than Boxer has been.  As for Whitman – I don’t know.   Certainly McClintock hasn’t supported her…but I don’t know why not.  Just haven’t heard enough – that’s kind of the problem with the “dilettantes” as you call them – no solid history to base an opinion on.  Still…the Moonbeam again???   At least Whitman knows what a bottom line is.  Now – whether she’ll be able to deal with the legislature…that’s a different kettle of fish….
    How can things get any worse?


    So, speaking of the medieval mindset of the Islamists….
    I was thinking more along the lines of primordial ooze.

  • Mike Devx

    I’ve finally figured out a way to state why RINOs make me uncomfortable.  Does the following make sense?
    I’m a rather strict constitutionalist myself.  Especially I think we’ve abandoned the 10th Amendment – that all powers not specifically vested in a branch of the national government belong instead to each State, or to that States’ People – the citizenry.

    This goes for all the amendments, including the 2nd.  While the use of commas make the 2nd somewhat ambiguous in our age, it wasn’t ambiguous in 1790, I don’t think.  The People – the citizenry – had the right to bear arms, and an auxiliary right to that was the right to form militias.  I think it’s an error to say that only citizens in an official state militia have the right to bear arms.  The writings of various signers of the Constitution make it clear to me as well that this was the intent of the 2nd amendment.
    So,  who do RINOs make me uncomfortable?  Because they make statements that are Democrat-lite that are not compatible with individual rights under the Constitution, with individual freedom tightly coupled to individual responsibility.  They make statements at odds with conservative values.  You can’t back away from all these statements – so do they even HAVE such conservative values?
    The counter-argument is that they are living in quasi-liberal States, and to be elected they must espouse some liberal values, or they can’t even get elected.  But I don’t agree.
    Rudy Giuliani is one such, who has made any number of liberal statements while claiming to be a conservative.  It troubles me, and certainly not only in his case.  Why espouse causes that seem to be deliberate violations of the concepts of individual rights, individual freedoms, individual responsibility?
    Let me pose a debate question, and the manner in which I WISH that a RINO would answer it, thus showing his or her respect for the Constitution and this focus on the individual – instead of groups or identity politics – that I think lies at the heart of our Constitution and our freedoms.
    Moderator:  Mr. Giuliana, New York City has very strict controls, and even bans, on a variety of guns.  How do you reconcile this with the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution?
    Giuliani as I wish he would answer: The citizens of New York City have spoken on this issue and they are solidly in favor of gun control laws as they currently stand.   I’m not going anywhere near this one, because they have spoken so strongly.  Now, I’m a conservative, and I believe in the Constitution! [spoken strongly and with passion]  It guarantees our freedoms.  Each and every one of us.  If I had a perfect world, I’d say – sure, no gun control, no gun bans.  But the people of New York City have spoken, and I will simply say:  I’m not going to take any action on this issue even though I disagree with you, my fellow New Yorkers.  Unless I see that YOU, the people of New York City are changing your minds to agree with me.  In asking for your vote I’m asking you to trust me on this.
    Or something like that.  Affirming his opposition and explaining the conservative principles behind that opposition… but simultaneously acknowledging that he won’t touch it, because if he did, he couldn’t even get elected. And giving his citizenry something to mull over to perhaps come into agreement with him.  Wouldn’t that be better than saying you SUPPORT and AGREE WITH those gun laws?
    Or am I splitting hairs here?

  • suek

    Mike, you raise an interesting point.  I don’t get to watch Glenn Beck much (due to his time spot), but he has had a couple of good shows that they’ve run on week-ends.  The shows were about “Progressives”, where they came from, what they believe and the fact that while most of them are Dems, some are Republicans – Bush among them.  And McCain.  These are the ones we seem to call the RINOs.  They seem to be in favor of a more limited government than Dems generally prefer, but they still look to government to “fix” human problems.  They  “Progress” more slowly than Dems want to – Dems want to _grab_ power and change things, the Progressive RINOs want to convince people that this is what they should be demanding, and are content to wait for the people to change _first_.  In the end, though, they both have the same goal…an elite government guiding the stupid populace in how to live their lives.
    By the way – I’m still reading de Toqueville on my Kindle.  It’s _very_ slow.  I’m forming the opinion that Kindle is _not_ the way to read anything with footnotes – they asterisk the material and give it a letter, then include the footnote in the reading material.  I can’t get the feel of it being an actual footnote or an end of book reference, and it interrupts the flow of the reading material.  Fiction wouldn’t have this problem, so it might work better.  Anyway, his comments are about the educational levels of the early immigrants to America – and the fact that they may not have been upper class, but they were also not lower class, and most were well educated.  It leads me to the opinion that much of our problem today is due to the fact that we no longer have an educated populace.  Our schools have lowered standards to the point of condemning the population at large to a state of ignorance about history and how to think.  What good does it do to be able to read if what you read is worthless?

  • suek

    Sort of as a footnote.  My husband is of the opinion that Fiorina ran into the Old Boys Club at HP, and that she successfully pulled them out of a major slump with them kicking and screaming about the changes she instituted before they bought her out to make her go away.   HP is still out there, and I haven’t followed it enough to have any opinion about it myself.  The fact that she started as a receptionist and ended up as President must be a story in itself…  I’d like to read an accounting of just how _that_ happened!


    The law of unintended (positive) consequences …

    “During difficult economic times and high unemployment rates nationally, our industry actually grew and created 16,800 new, well-paying jobs,” According to NSSF President Steve Sanetti.

  • Mike Devx

    Another post today… (thank you for the open thread here, book)
    JoshuaPundit posted a video from a discussion panel with Dennis Prager, Sarah Palin, and someone else I couldn’t identify.  It’s an eight minute video, all of Dennis Prager.  I was never bored at any point.  I thought he was quite good.

    I’m not sure I’d call THIS “the most important election in American history”.  Clearly the next few years – covering about the next four elections – together may comprise the most important election cycle in American history.  For we are approaching the end of the Grand Leftist Experiment, under which the national government has seized power after power, expanding its size and scope to cover every aspect of our lives.  This vast expansion is nearly impossible to comprehend.  The loss of freedom, occurring so slowly but inexorably over fifty or sixty years, has been vast.  And the entire experiment, doomed to predictable failure by anyone familiar with history, is now teetering on the precipice of that failure.  America CAN go down the tubes, and She is about to.  We can bring her back, but the challenge will be daunting.  We can begin it now, in 2010, but it will take more than one election to avoid the looming disaster.
    Is any one party – ie, the GOP – ready to take solely upon its shoulders this daunting task?  Is the GOP ready?  I won’t give you MY answer.  Not yet…


    I won’t give you MY answer.  Not yet…
    You got my attention. We have certainly hit a new chapter in American politics. I don’t know where in the massive volume we are – middle, nearing the end with yet another massive volume yet to be written. I am in agreement that a single election cannot change the course. Even with a ‘corrected’ swing, certain policies are in place and they would have to be addressed as well and there are so many unelected bureaucrats ‘in place’ that could throw a monkey wrench into the works. I am specifically thinking of the American soldier, who downloaded 200,000 pieces of information and handed them over to the  Australian owner of wiki leaks and I can’t remember either of their names at the moment. The system has been breached and infected and I am referring to the Army and  the Nidal Hassan case off the top of my head.
    So, when I saw this lead about the van der sloot case, I coupled that with the way I feel about how the government has been ‘handling’ our domestic and foreign policy over the last 40 years and wanted to shout the same two words. I mean what’s the difference if you kill something in one fell swoop or slowly over a period of time – results are the same.
    AP – Angry onlookers shouted “Disgrace!” and “Murderer!”


    This is just too clever not to share and to think that it was written BF (before flotilla)
    The Elders of Zion, the venerable and shadowy Jewish organization that controls the international banking industry, news media and Hollywood, has announced that it is disbanding so that members can retire to Florida and live out their golden years on the golf course.
    “We had a good run,” said one senior Elder, reminiscing over old photographs of world leaders in his musty, wood-paneled office at an undisclosed location. “Maybe we ran the world for just a little too long. Anyway, now it’s Obama’s problem.”