Watcher’s Council nominations for the end of February 2013

Today’s the day!  I get to vote!  Yay!  Here’s what I’ll be voting on:

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Taylor Swift and the screaming goat

Just for laughs:

I’m ambivalent about Taylor Swift. I’ve liked that she stayed classy when it came to clothes and not doing the drinking, drugging, partying scene.  Given that the teenage girls in my neighborhood like her music, I’m glad she hasn’t been a slut.

What I don’t like about her is her whiny songs.  More than that, I don’t like the way she dates immature young men and, having gotten material for a new whiny song, dumps the young men and then publicly “outs” them as immature young men.  There’s something very mean-spirited about her approach to men (or really, boys) and music.

Today’s reality was yesterday’s satire

There’s a big hoo-hah in Colorado, because a 6-year-old boy feels like a girl.  His parents, out of respect for his feelings, are raising him as a girl.  The school district was not impressed.  It stated that, for bathroom purposes, if you have a penis, you have to use the boys’ room.

I can actually see both sides.  To the extent this kid marches to the beat of his own drummer, he’s at serious risk of being attacked during (or because of) trips to the boys’ room.  The school, however, is correct that, as long as the boy’s bodily functions are channeled through male body parts, they risk push-back and lawsuits from allowing a boy in the girls’ room.

Perhaps the parents should think about homeschooling, which can be an excellent solution for square pegs who don’t fit in the public schools’ round holes.   Although the Left would like to deny it, there are some problems the government can’t fix, and some situations that are incapable of equal outcomes.

But why I am telling you this?  The Monty Python crew dealt with precisely this issue about 25 years ago:

Watcher’s Council winners for February 22, plus the Forum

Washington’s Birthday was a busy day for me (it was also my Mom’s birthday), so I never got around to posting last week’s Watcher’s Council winners.  I’m posting them here and now, along with a link to the Council members’ fascinating forum discussing how far American states can go in banning sharia.

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

Color me prescient — Woodward in the crosshairs

 

Fortune teller

Yesterday, regarding Bob Woodward’s openly stated claims that Obama’s White House bullied him and that Obama’s conduct amounts to madness, I made this prediction:

Woodward is very much mistaken if he thinks the current generation of media types will support him in the long run, if he continues to attack Obama.  If he doesn’t step back and start to toe the party line, the Obamabots in the media will shred his reputation, blackmail him (if they can), and generally reduce him to Sarah Palinesque pariah status.

Honestly, it wasn’t that impressive a prediction because it falls in the same category as predicting that the sun will rise tomorrow in the east or that water will . . . wait for it . . . flow downhill.  Still, to the extent I made a prediction, I’m pleased to report that I was absolutely correct.

Obama “senior advisor” David Plouffe went on Twitter to say that Woodward has become too old to matter.  Other current generation reporters, the ones who confuse sycophantic propaganda with old-style investigative reporting, were equally vicious and/or dismissive of this one-time journalism icon.

Though no one’s disputed Woodward’s reporting, the media’s Cult of Obama began pushing back against the Watergate legend even before he dropped the bomb last night that he had been threatened by a top White House official.

But when that news hit, many in media immediately chose to protect Obama by ridiculing Woodward, questioning his motives, and/or dismissing his reporting.

Meet the members of the Cult of Obama…

Politico White House reporter Glenn Thrush:

Wonder if Woodward has humped up his book sales from GOPers, ie Amity Schlaes
— Glenn Thrush (@GlennThrush) February 28, 2013

BuzzFeed’s Ben Smith:

Wish I could claim credit for this observation by a friend: “In which Bob Woodward shows he too can master the new media landscape”
— Ben Smith (@BuzzFeedBen) February 28, 2013

Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg:

Hezbollah is intimidating. Gene Sperling writing, “I think you will regret staking out that claim” is not intimidating. cc: @buzzfeedben
— Jeffrey Goldberg (@JeffreyGoldberg) February 28, 2013

The above is just a small sampling of the media push back against once of their own who “went rogue.”  You really need to read all of them to understand how quickly a Democrat icon can become Sarah Palin if he is deemed a heretic.  (And I use the word “heretic” deliberately, with all its religious connotations, because what we’re seeing here is a religion, with Obama as the God-head.)

Biden and the Oscar Pistorius school of self-defense

Oscar Pistorius — the Blade Runner — was indicted for murder in South Africa, after he killed his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, by firing four shots from his bedroom through the bathroom door.  Pistorius claimed he was acting in self-defense.  The prosecution contends that he and his girlfriend had a violent argument, that he beat her head with a cricket bat, and that he then intentionally shot her to death (although firing shots through the door seems like an inefficient way to do it).  Presumably a trial will help reveal a truth, if not the truth.

In any event, Joe Biden has clearly been following Pistorius’ killing career closely, because Biden has now stamped his imprimatur on the Pistorius school of self-defense (emphasis mine):

F&S: What about the other uses, for self-defense and target practice?

V.P. BIDEN: Well, the way in which we measure it is—I think most scholars would say—is that as long as you have a weapon sufficient to be able to provide your self-defense. I did one of these town-hall meetings on the Internet and one guy said, “Well, what happens when the end days come? What happens when there’s the earthquake? I live in California, and I have to protect myself.”

I said, “Well, you know, my shotgun will do better for you than your AR-15, because you want to keep someone away from your house, just fire the shotgun through the door.Most people can handle a shotgun a hell of a lot better than they can a semiautomatic weapon in terms of both their aim and in terms of their ability to deter people coming. We can argue whether that’s true or not, but it is no argument that, for example, a shotgun could do the same job of protecting you. Now, granted, you can come back and say, “Well, a machine gun could do a better job of protecting me.” No one’s arguing we should make machine guns legal.

Wow, Joe! How can you be wrong on so many levels? First, the shotgun has a much harder kickback than the AR-15, so people, especially lightweight people (such as women), can’t handle it better than the alternative. Second of all, firing a gun into the air as he advises is illegal. And third, shooting through the door means you’re shooting blind.

Barack Obama — political strategist (and Chicago thug)

Obama is proving to be quite the chess player (especially because he’s got the media to help him cheat . . . er, play the game). Meanwhile, Republicans are still trying to figure out the intricacies of Chutes and Ladders.

Obama is also showing his Chicago-political roots.  Woodward, moving very slowly, is beginning to understand that Obama cares nothing about leading the nation, but is, instead, concerned only with gamesmanship. Fortunately, Woodward has a big reputation and a bully pulpit, so his doubts are making waves.  However, Woodward is very much mistaken if he thinks the current generation of media types will support him in the long run, if he continues to attack Obama.  If he doesn’t step back and start to toe the party line, the Obamabots in the media will shred his reputation, blackmail him (if they can), and generally reduce him to Sarah Palinesque pariah status.

In Chicago, the people die in the streets, but the politicians keep riding in their gilded coaches.  Obama is bringing that same model to the states as a whole.  Let’s just hope that it doesn’t become deadly on a national scale.

Proof that doing too many drugs will destroy your brain

To be honest, I have no proof whatsoever that a singer named Morrissey has ever done drugs.  But to the extent he’s a brainless wonder, I’m thinking that maybe, just maybe, drugs explain this:

Never shy to make a controversial comment, “Bigmouth Strikes Again” singer Morrissey has claimed that “homosexual men would never kill other men”.

The 53-year-old singer, made his claims in an interview with an online magazine for teenage girls. While discussing war, he suggested that if there were more gay men, there would be fewer wars.

“War, I thought, was the most negative aspect of male heterosexuality,” he said. “If more men were homosexual, there would be no wars, because homosexual men would never kill other men, whereas heterosexual men love killing other men.”

Apparently Morrissey isn’t big on reading papers.  If he was, he might know about Jeffrey Dahmer, who not only killed men, he also ate them.

Just the other day, the tabloids reported on a gay killer who preyed on gay men.

If you have the stomach for sordid, you can easily find examples of gay relationships that ended with violent death.

For AIPAC, trying to function in a world with entirely different rules

Gandhi is revered because his policy of peaceful resistance brought down the British Empire’s century’s old rule over India.  It’s true.  It did.  But what few are willing to acknowledge is that this tactic worked only because he was using it against a moral nation, one that had been financially and emotionally depleted by two world wars in quick succession and that was increasingly removed ideologically from the concept of Empire.  Had he been dealing with an aggressive, hungry imperial nation — England in the 18th century, Stalin, Hitler, etc. — the outcome would have been very different.

My point is that we achieve our victories, not just because of our own efforts, but because of our opponents’ make-up.  And this is where AIPAC comes it, for it has suddenly discovered that it has no say in Washington.  As Lee Smith pointed out, AIPAC hasn’t gotten much done lately:

This weekend, more than 10,000 pro-Israel activists, Jews and non-Jews alike, will gather at the Washington convention center for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s annual policy conference. These friends and supporters of the U.S.-Israel bilateral relationship will hear from members of Congress and the executive branch who will all testify to the singular influence that AIPAC, as the pillar of the pro-Israel community, wields in the capital of the free world.

But just how powerful is AIPAC if a man who refers to it as the “Jewish lobby” and has defiantly claimed that he is not an “Israeli senator” is slated to be our next secretary of Defense? And, most significantly, how much influence does the lobbying organization actually exercise if it can’t carry the day on the single issue that’s been at the very top of its agenda for over a decade: stopping Iran from getting nuclear weapons.

Despite an operating budget of more than $60 million, on the most crucial issue facing Israel’s security, AIPAC has lost the policy debate. The winners include those who believe you can’t stop a nation from getting the bomb if it’s determined to do so, those who think the Iranians have a right to nuclear weapons, and those who argue the Iranians can be contained—among them, our new Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel.

(Read the rest here.)

Smith blames AIPAC’s deafening silence regarding both the Hagel and the Brennan nominations.  He considers this a tactical failure.  I believe, though, that AIPAC’s inability to have a say in the debate about Hagel goes beyond tactics and represents a much deeper problem for Israel and her friends in America.

Up until 2008, AIPAC was accustomed to dealing with a very specific government model:  bipartisan support for Israel.  AIPAC never took sides in a debate because its sole role was to be a non-partisan voice for Israel.  Whether it was dealing with Democrats or Republicans, it simply had to offer these politicians information about Israel.

AIPAC assiduously avoided partisan or controversial stands because its moral weight rested upon the fact that it was not a party organ but, instead, was always a conduit for information and good-will to flow between Israel and Congress as a whole.  In other words, AIPAC could be Gandhi, because it was dealing with an “opponent” (if you consider the government as a whole as being in a slightly adversarial stance to lobbyists) that wasn’t actively hostile.  Indeed, it was often quite friendly to and supportive of AIPAC’s goals.

Things are very different in Washington now, and AIPAC hasn’t caught up to that fact.  The party that holds power in Washington is openly anti-Israel and increasingly antisemitic.  This puts AIPAC in a bind. It’s one thing, after all, to advocate for Israel. It’s another thing to take a stand against the Democrat President’s cabinet choices — something that smacks of the partisanship AIPAC has always avoided.

Until AIPAC acknowledges that the old world is gone and that it’s dealing with a very different one (Dems will continue to be anti-Israel long after Obama has left the building), her voice will remain muted and ineffectual.  What Hagel mistook for a nefarious “Jewish lobby” was, in fact, an organization that worked with politicians who already supported Israel, either for moral reasons or for Cold War reasons.

AIPAC didn’t control those politicians.  It was their servant, not their master, since it enabled the politicians to carry out their own goals.  With the Cold War over and the morality leeched out of public life, Washington, D.C., no longer has any use for AIPAC and the so-called “Israel lobby” is being kicked to the curb.

Trying to understand the sequester

Obama is demagoguing the sequester like mad.  David Angelo provides a pleasant breath of common sense:

Incidentally, to the extent Obama says that the sequester will result in federal prosecutors having to abandon cases, that may be a very good thing. The news lately has too many stories about federal prosecutors run amok. Here are just a handful of links:

US attorney Carmen Ortiz strikes yet another sleazy deal.

Prosecutor aids DEA as it tries to seize a $1.5 million building over a $37 pot deal.

Oh!  Carmen Ortiz is in the headlines again for prosecutorial overreach.

And then there’s the corruption….

(Thanks to Earl for all these links.  He has been appropriately concerned for years about prosecutorial abuse.)