Tuesday afternoon round-up (and Open Thread)

Victorian posy of pansiesThis is one of those days where my day totally didn’t go as planned . . . but for good reasons.  How often can one say that?  Plans or no plans, though, the news marches on and there’s so much interesting stuff I want to share with you.

***

When Rep. Louis Gohmert (R.) pointed out to Eric Holder that Holder seemed remarkably unfazed by the fact that Congress had held him in contempt, Holder, showing remarkable contempt for Congress, snapped ““You don’t want to go there, buddy! You don’t want to go there, okay.”

If it were me, I’d hold Holder in contempt just for that — that is, for the gross disrespect with which he spoke to a Congressman while actually appearing before Congress.  Certainly, if this had been a courtroom and Holder had  spoken that way to a judge, Holder would instantly have been cooling his heels in a jail cell.  Holder also seems to have forgotten that Holder’s an appointee (a mere employee), while Gohmert is a representative of the people.

Aside from the obvious crude, vulgar conduct, what’s noteworthy is that Holder insists that, while he’s personally pained that he was held in contempt for refusing to turn over Fast and Furious documents, he still has no intention of turning over the documents.  Holder’s arrogance tells you a lot about the state of Washington, D.C. today.  Holder knows that, because he and his boss are black, Congress will do precisely nothing to force him to abide by Congress’s demands and his constitutional obligations.

***

May I speak frankly? John Kerry is a brainless, cowardly, dishonest, antisemitic cancer infecting the American body politic. To the extent he’s also Secretary of State, I’d say that his particular disease is widespread in American politics and comes from the top. Just sayin’.

***

I already heard from a reliably Leftist friend why we shouldn’t believe data showing that health insurance premiums have skyrocketed since Obamacare went into effect: Because insurance brokers are facing competition from Obamacare, the sampling of 148 insurance brokers must be discounted on the presumption that those queried were lying when they provided insurance pricing information. The friend implied that a larger sampling would have made a difference, but that’s a sop to the stupid.  If he thinks brokers are inherently dishonest because they don’t like Obamacare, then it’s irrelevant how many one surveys.

I see things a little differently. I’m pretty damn sure that, if you force everybody to buy over-the-top insurance that exceeds what most people want, and make half of the purchasers pay for the other half, premiums are going to go up quickly and frequently.

***

Still on the healthcare front, this is exciting news: four men with severely damaged spinal cords are able to move their legs again thanks to electrical stimulation that may be retraining both brain and spinal cord. That’s just totally freakin’ amazing and I hope it’s something real and not just anomalous.

***

I had a whole bunch of links and arguments lined up to discuss the ironic news that the CEO of OKCupid, the company that started the witch hunt against Brendan Eich, is on record as having donated to a pro-traditional marriage politician (more than one, in fact, if you count his 2008 donation to Barack Obama). Then I read Ace and realized I didn’t have anything to add to the subject.

***

Dennis Prager explains why the Mozilla boycott is important and, more than that, necessary to preserve American liberties (emphasis mine):

As Princeton professor Robert George warned on my radio show, today the Left fires employees for opposition to same-sex marriage. Tomorrow it will fire employees who are pro-life (“anti-woman”). Then it will be employees who support Israel (an “apartheid state”).

The reason to boycott Firefox is not that it is run by leftists. Nor is the reason to support the man-woman definition of marriage. It is solely in order to preserve liberty in the land of liberty.
If Mozilla doesn’t recant and rehire Eich as CEO, McCarthyism will have returned far more pervasively and perniciously than in its first incarnation. The message the gay Left (such as the Orwellian-named Human Rights Campaign) and the Left in general wish to send is that Americans who are in positions of power at any company should be forced to resign if they hold a position that the Left strongly opposes.

And right now that position is opposition to same-sex marriage.

Think about that. In the United States of America today, the belief that marriage should remain defined as the union of a man and woman is portrayed as so vile by the Left that anyone who holds it is unfit for employment.

[snip]

The battle over Firefox is the most important battle in America at this particular moment. If you use Firefox, uninstall it, and use Internet Explorer, Chrome, Opera, or Safari. For Windows, try Pale Moon, which is based on the Firefox engine and will import all of your bookmarks; for mobile devices, you can try Puffin.

America can have liberty or it can have Firefox. Right now, it cannot have both.

***

Victor Davis Hanson details how, in just five years, Obama has destroyed the world order as it existed since 1942, one that saw America use a variety of strategies to encourage countries that support individual freedom and to isolate, weaken, and perhaps destroy those that don’t. Obama has not retreated to the isolation America embraced after WWI, when it left the world alone and asked the world to leave it alone. Instead, Obama is very deliberately cultivating or encouraging freedom’s enemies, while manifestly abandoning freedom’s (and America’s) allies.

Funnily enough, Obama’s official foreign policy on behalf of the United States of America precisely tracks the legal definition of treason (18 U.S. Code § 2381):

Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason and shall suffer death, or shall be imprisoned not less than five years and fined under this title but not less than $10,000; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States.

Allow me to channel Elmer Fudd: “Be afwaid. Be vewy, vewy afwaid.” And as Fudd wouldn’t have said, the Pax American is officially over; let Armageddon begin.

***

Obama and his minions are gloating about Obamacare’s 7.1 million enrollments. They seem to have lost sight of the fact that forcing people into a government program is entirely separate from the government program’s actually functioning. Michael Ramirez hasn’t forgotten that little detail.

***

Maybe none of this is surprising considering that the mayor’s name is “Outlaw”:

One-thousand “brothers in blue” came to pay their respects this afternoon to Officer Alexander Thalmann, 22, killed in the line of duty in New Bern, N.C., last week.

Thalmann’s partner, Officer Justin Wester, 23, is recovering from a gunshot wound to his leg from the shootout that left convicted felon, Bryan Stallings, 35, dead.

The incident happened March 28, in the housing projects known as Craven Terrace.

The town’s grief was made even more painful by the local administration’s handling of events following the young officer’s death.

For unknown reasons, newly elected, Mayor Dana Outlaw chose to attend Thursday’s funeral of the career criminal.

Adding insult to injury, last night’s planned memorial for local citizens to say “goodbye” to Alexander Thalmann was cancelled by the mayor’s office.

It was alleged that two of the city’s aldermen had invited relatives of the killer to attend the vigil. Rather than rescind the invitation, the city chose to cancel the event.

***

You actually don’t have to go any further than the title to Daniel Greenfield’s post to know that he’s written something good and important: Islam Is What Happens When Civilization Loses.

***

I’ve mentioned before the main reason an Ivy League liberal I know refused even to consider Sarah Palin as a vice-presidential candidate, despite reluctantly conceding that (a) she had more governing experience than Barack Obama in 2008 and (b) she would have been an apprentice, if she won, not the main player. That was all irrelevant. What matter was that Palin, unlike prep school, Ivy League communist Obama, “is not one of us.” I thought of that liberal when I read about Kathleen Parker’s unconscionable snobbery.

***

Have you registered yet for American CurrentSee, a free online magazine that seeks to give a voice to conservative American blacks? I hasten to add here that the magazine is not limited to black writers or black issues. In other words, it’s a magazine that’s truly diverse, rather than a monolithic magazine that simply pays lip-service to some abstract “diversity.” The magazine examines politics and social issues that affect blacks, but that also affect all of us who want a strong, unified, freedom-loving country. So far, I’m pleased that I signed up.

***

And finally, I continue to be completely impressed by Amy Purdy’s turn on Dancing With The Stars (this time with a new partner for the week):

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Comments

  1. JKB says

    Ann Althouse had a question today as to how Scott Walker, should he run for president, respond to questions about his lack of a college degree.  Ann is all for a surprise degree recently completed.  I’d love to see the Progs insult 70% of the population who don’t have degrees.  
     
    But it reminded me of this from an article by Percy Marks in 1923:
     
    “The idea is, of course, that men are successful because they have gone to college.  No idea was ever more absurd. No man is successful because he has managed to pass a certain number of courses and has received a sheepskin which tells the world in Latin, that neither the world nor the graduate can read, that he has successfully completed the work required. If the man is successful, it is because he has the qualities for success in him; the college “education” has merely, speaking in terms’ of horticulture, forced those qualities and given him certain intellectual tools with which to work-tools which he could have got without going to college, but not nearly so quickly. So far as anything practical is concerned, a college is simply an intellectual hothouse. For four years the mind of the undergraduate is put “under glass,” and a very warm and constant sunshine is poured down upon it. The result is, of course, that his mind blooms earlier than it would in the much cooler intellectual atmosphere of the business world. 
     
    “A man learns more about business in the first six months after his graduation than he does in his whole four years of college. But-and here is the “practical” result of his college work-he learns far more in those six months than if he had not gone to college. He has been trained to learn, and that, to all intents and purposes, is all the training he has received. To say that he has been trained to think is to say essentially that he has been trained to learn, but remember that it is impossible to teach a man to think. The power to think must be inherently his. All that the teacher can do is help him learn to order his thoughts-such as they are.”
     
    But it also made me curious about Percy Marks, who after years teaching in the Ivies, became a writer full time.  Perhaps because his first novel, The Plastic Age, was scandalous, for 1924, in regards to the goings on at colleges.  Hazing, petting, partying.  It all got his book “banned in Boston”
     
    But the references on his wiki page had a link to the following chapter from another of his books.  The topic, college athletics.  If I could, I would present it without the date published as except for a few anachronistic terms, you’d probably not think it wasn’t written last week rather than near 90 years ago.  Odd, how nothing seems to have changed in academia over the last century.  Well, except what is considered scandalous.
    Athletics

  2. sabawa says

    Ecclesiastes 1:9   Whatever has happened before will happen again.  Whatever has been done before will be done again.  There is nothing new under the sun.    
    This was written approx. 1000 BC.   Minor tweaks over time……but what JKB stated, so did King Solomon.

  3. Tara S says

    Great roundup of articles! I have a good hour’s worth of reading material up in different tabs now. :)
     
    Don’t have anything particularly important or mind-bending to add. Just two random comments, based on recent experiences:
     
    First, I think group projects in college are, frankly, ridiculous. Making students’ grades depend on OTHER students’ work ethics — especially when GPAs are such fiddly things to maintain — seems utterly pointless.
     
    Second, if anybody’s thinking of going to see Captain America 2, do so. Besides being a great superhero movie, it also had some plot points that, IMO, are of particular interest to conservatives — there was one scene in particular where I think just about everybody watching it must have been thinking of the NSA, and if it hadn’t gone into production before the whole NSA scandal hit, I would’ve thought the screenwriters had that in mind as well.

  4. JKB says

    These teacher anecdotes are to funny not to point out
     
    Classics
     
    Senior Student:  “Sir, this book seriously sucks.”
    Me:  “Jane Austen is beloved around the world and her novels are considered classics.  Just give it a chance.”
    Him:  “If I was interested in a bunch of boring people who do nothing and gossip all day, I can hang around the cafeteria.”  
     
    Smoking
     
    Grade 11 Student:  “Sir, you ever smoke?”
    Me:  “Yes.  Started when I was your age.”
    Him:  “Why did you start?”
    Me:  “I saw a movie called Now, Voyager starring Bette Davis.  There was this French actor named Paul Henreid.  Super suave.  He put two cigarettes in his mouth and lit both of them and handed one to Davis.  I thought, Man, I want to do that one day.”
    Him:  “Did you?”
    Me:  “Tried it at a party for this girl I liked.  When I handed it to her, she only said, Ewww!
    Him:  “Man, you broke your heart and your lungs in one go.”
    http://yousucksir.com
     

  5. Charles Martel says

    In C.S. Lewis’s “The Screwtape Letters,” it becomes quickly apparent that Hell is populated by conniving, backstabbing manipulators whose goal is the ability to feast on the energy of demons who fail at some task. There is no such thing as loyalty (except, fearfully, to Satan himself) or compassion. It is strictly all for one and all for one.
     
    So, if Satan were to invent a religion, being as he is the greatest unoriginal creature that ever existed (remember, he’s jealous of God because God can actually make things), he would invent a Bizarro World imitation of Judaism and Christianity: Islam. He would make sure that its “holy” text, the Qu’ran, would be filled with the most vile slanders against Jews and Christians, and that Allah would be preoccupied with his prophet’s penchant for boinking little girls, stealing other people’s goods, and getting divine intervention for his undending problems with his wives.
     
    Islam delenda est. After that, the Marxists.

  6. says

    Honesty is still the best policy. And it’s about time the people of California realized that their culture of whatever is the one producing the Yeelands and the Silicon Valleys.
     
    DC at least doesn’t pretend they are Republican or family values orientated, with 93% of the vote in 08 going to Hussein. After all, the DC cops along with the Michelle O black ops African Secret Service rendition, capped out a black woman because she wanted to drive away from a concrete barricade since she had her kid in the car and was lost. That’s DC.
     
    California thinks it’s a safe haven for immigrants and homosexuals, as if they were liberal or something. That’s a delusion on an entire different order.
     
    An additional front of the war people should be aware of concerns the publishing and reading section of America.
     
    http://voxday.blogspot.com/2014/03/combative-and-confrontational.html
     
    It’s going hot there as well as in Silicon, Yeeland California, etc. It’s good to see David Brin getting his deserved justice. I remember his blog post from 2008 that someone here, I believe, linked me to.

  7. SADIE says

    Statement from Brandeis University
    April 8, 2014

     
     

    Following a discussion today between President Frederick Lawrence and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Ms. Hirsi Ali’s name has been withdrawn as an honorary degree recipient at this year’s commencement. She is a compelling public figure and advocate for women’s rights, and we respect and appreciate her work to protect and defend the rights of women and girls throughout the world. That said, we cannot overlook certain of her past statements that are inconsistent with Brandeis University’s core values.  For all concerned, we regret that we were not aware of these statements earlier.
    Commencement is about celebrating and honoring our extraordinary students and their accomplishments, and we are committed to providing an atmosphere that allows our community’s focus to be squarely on our students. In the spirit of free expression that has defined Brandeis University throughout its history, Ms. Hirsi Ali is welcome to join us on campus in the future to engage in a dialogue about these important issues.
    SUMMARY: In the spirit of free expression Brandeis withdraws honorary degree. RACISTS!

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