Emptying the Inbox (and Open Thread)

inbox-full-216x300As I do on a regular basis, I let my inbox reach heroic proportions before, in a panic, I realized that I’d better take care of it because it would only get worse. And as always happens, I found a bunch of gems hiding in there. Some are a bit past their publication date, but they are interesting nevertheless, so I’m bringing them to your attention along with all the other stuff.

So here we go, with a potpourri of interesting reading. I won’t be tipping my hat to anybody, because I’ve lost track of who tipped me off to what, but everyone who brought these to my attention gets my heartiest thanks.

Chicago’s public schools are going to begin teaching an Afro-Centric curriculum, one with strong ties to antisemitism and loose ties to actual knowledge. As the antidote to that last point, I highly recommend Mary Lefkowitz’s Not Out Of Africa: How “Afrocentrism” Became An Excuse To Teach Myth As History which was, I believe, the first book to mount a serious challenge to Afro-Centric education.  (It was also one of those books that led me across the Rubicon, from unthinking Democrat to informed and committed conservative.)  The tragedy is that Chicago has now consigned yet another generation of children to failure, since Afro-Centrism is not an education that will carry them far . . . outside of activist circles, of course.

***

We’ve heard a lot of news lately about graduation speeches. Well, actually, we haven’t heard about the speeches. We’ve heard, instead, about the hard left censorship that holds that only people who are Progressives may give speeches on America’s college campuses. No highly accomplished, acclaimed, black women need apply if they dare to say that Islam is not a “religion of peace” or if they helped lead the U.S. into a war that did not take place in Libya or that did not consist of drone attacks on people in nations with which we are not at war. It would be so lovely to expose these frightened, censorious Leftists to the speech that Marine Corps’ General “Mad Dog” Mattis’ (Ret.) gave at the at the Marine Corps University Foundation’s 2014 Semper Fidelis Award Dinner this past February.  I’m not sure whether they’d first wet their pants or go straight to a heart attack.

***

A neologism is a “new word.” Some new words describe newly discovered or invented things. For example, the word “saxophone” did not exist before the instrument itself came along. Other neologisms, however, rename pre-existing things to distinguish them from the next generation of things. For example, until electric guitars came along, we simply had “guitars.” However, in the electric guitar era, those old, wooden, non-electric music makers needed a distinguishing name and they became, for the first time, “acoustic guitars.”

In our strange, brave new world, there is a neologism for those people (gay and straight) who are entirely comfortable with their genders. We are “cisgenders” or “cissexuals,” distinguishing us from “transgenders” or “transexuals.” I can see where the neologism is useful, but I find it strange to live in a world in which the absence of a biological error (mind and body are the same, either all male or all female), which is something that happens for the vast majority of people, needs its own new word.

***

This seems like an appropriate place to note that Nintendo has written a formal, public apology for the fact that its most recent game doesn’t have same-sex couples.  Considering that the demographic for Nintendo games is teenage boys and young men, I’m only surprised that the GLAAD crowd hasn’t gone after the game makers sooner.  And considering that the demographic for Nintendo games is teenage boys and young men, I have to wonder how popular same-sex couple games will be with this cohort.

***

Pamela Geller alerts us to a proposed federal “hate crime” act criminalizing speech that is working its way through Congress. I’ve had a problem with “hate crime” laws from the beginning, because to me, assault is assault no matter the motivation. Once you start looking at motivations, you’re punishing “thought crimes,” which is antithetical to the Constitution. The newly proposed legislation squares the circle by saying that we won’t just punish thought crimes attached to actual criminal acts. Instead, we’re going to criminalize speech too. And if that isn’t unconstitutional, I don’t know what is.

***

Anyway, who needs federal laws criminalizing speech when we already have social pressure at publicly funded universities doing a fine job of purging free speech.  Duke University has a campaign going to coerce students into banishing such words and phrases as “pussy,” “man up,” and “that’s so gay” from their vocabulary because they hurt people’s feelings.

In the old days, “nice” people didn’t say such things because they were ill-mannered.  I can support that “good manners” approach because it’s about each person making a decision about how he wants to present  himself to the world.

Today, though, the rationale for not using such words and phrases is that everyone around us is so emotionally weak that they cannot bear the pain of even hearing the word “tranny.”  In other words, we destroy free speech by encouraging each person to think he is surrounded by weaklings who will probably rise up and kill him should he ruffle their delicate sensibilities.  That’s wrong at so many levels.

***

In this grim, censorious world, thank God for the Duffel Blog, a military humor blog that doesn’t care if ruffles delicate sensibilities.  The Taliban shouldn’t be respected.  They should be ridiculed and destroyed because they are evil.

***

 I’ve written here before about a common denominator in mass shootings:  psychotropic drugs.  At the Liberty Crier, you can find a useful list identifying shooters and their drugs.  I believe in psychotropic drugs, which have rescued millions of people from chronic depression, bipolar order, dysfunctional schizophrenia, etc.  What I don’t approve of is the way those same drugs are handed out to children (especially boys) like candy in order to ensure that they sit quietly in public school classrooms.

***

One Syrian rebel believes that Syria’s Civil War has proven that the rebels have only one true friend in the world:  Israel.  He’s correct, of course.  The problem for Israel is that any treaty with Muslims is effective only as long as the Muslims benefit from that treaty.  Then, the doctrine of taqiyya kicks in, saying that the treaty can be dismissed and the good Muslim can resume its all-out war against its former ally.

***

Just yesterday, I wrote a post about Obama’s God-complex.  Then, when going through my email, I found this link to an absolutely wonderful post Mike McDaniel wrote on Easter (with some very nice words about yours truly), looking at Obama’s belief system, and covering everything from his belief in himself, to his support for Islam, to his lukewarm statements about Christianity.  Perhaps the possibility of taqiyya in action doesn’t apply just to Syrian rebels.

***

Tina Brown ruined Vanity Fair by making it sleazy, and ruined The New Yorker by taking it from gently Left but still interesting, to hard Left and damn boring.  Since then, everything Brown has touched has turned to dross.  She’s now whining about the fact that Matt Drudge, Lucianne Goldberg, and others managed to break through the media wall protecting Bill Clinton and expose  his immoral peccadilloes to the world.  Neo-neocon gives Brown the appropriate treatment:  hard facts mixed with amusing (and deserved) condescension.

Incidentally, have you noticed that, not only is Monica Lewinsky painting herself as a victim, but the media is eating it up, with Time promising her an apology?  Yes, Lewinsky got dragged through the dirt, but let’s not forget that she voluntarily had a sexual affair with a married man.  Not only was he a married man, but he was president.

You don’t have to be the brightest bulb on the planet to know that, if that affair goes public, you’re going to be in the spotlight.  Considering her own immoral and stupid behavior, how sorry should we be for Lewinsky, really?

***

I don’t care very much about pro football (unless the 49ers are in the playoffs or Super Bowl), and I do not care about Michael Sam.  I do wonder, thought, if the Rams are going to regret choosing Sam.  The team’s every decision regarding him (time on bench, time on field, etc.) is going to be closely scrutinized and, if anything is deemed to be less than the GLAAD crew thinks he deserves, the team is going to be roundly and soundly denounced as homophobic.

***

And finally, I am not a big fan of Roz Chast’s cartoons, although she is one of the most popular New Yorker cartoonists.  I can recognize her talent, but her work just doesn’t tickle my funny bone.

Having said that, I felt that she and I were sisters under the skin when I listened to her interview about her new book Can’t We Talk about Something More Pleasant?: A Memoir, describing her journey through her parents’ aging, illness, and death.  I’m not sure I’ll read the book (the cartoons just don’t work as a medium for me), but I was utterly charmed by Chast’s interview.  There are some differences from my situation — she was dealing with two aging parents, not one; and her mother hated, rather than loved, doctors — but for the most part, what she said was what I’ve experienced.

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  • Libby

    Ugh, I hate “cisgendered” as much as “heteronormative.” They can’t treat what’s normal as normal because it would betray that all of these new genders & sexual preferences are then not normal. Harder to demand the country accommodate the needs of these various groups that are much less than 1%of the population (e.g. bathrooms for transgenders, etc.).
    – – – – –
    Ayaan Hirsi Ali is kindly reminding those Johnny-come-latelies to the terrorism of Boko Haram that it in fact an Islamic war on Christians, not some isolated African version of the Left’s tiresome War on Women meme (nor is it because of poverty or Global Warming, as others have speculated). No wonder Brandeis didn’t want her to speak – she would have made it impossible for them to continue denying that Islam, terrorism/jihad, and the most brutal treatment of women worldwide are inextricably linked (and all other Lefty bugaboos pale in comparison to their threat to our way of life): http://preview.tinyurl.com/kj7l9z4
     
    “The kidnapping of the schoolgirls throws into bold relief a central part of what the jihadists are about: the oppression of women. Boko Haram sincerely believes that girls are better off enslaved than educated. The terrorists’ mission is no different from that of the Taliban assassin who shot and nearly killed 15-year-old Pakistani Malala Yousafzai…..
    It is also time for Western liberals to wake up. If they choose to regard Boko Haram as an aberration, they do so at their peril. The kidnapping of these schoolgirls is not an isolated tragedy; their fate reflects a new wave of jihadism that extends far beyond Nigeria and poses a mortal threat to the rights of women and girls. If my pointing this out offends some people more than the odious acts of Boko Haram, then so be it.”

     

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com/2014/04/08/the-lefts-true-nature/
     
    This is on topic for the God Complex and presents more sources and philosophical view points on the matter.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    “In the old days, “nice” people didn’t say such things because they were ill-mannered.”
     
    They didn’t say “man up”? What kind of society was that…

  • SADIE

    And just in time for Mother’s Day – the winner is, none other than……
     
    An Austrian bearded drag queen, Conchita Wurst, who won the 59th edition of the Eurovision Song Contest Saturday with a James Bond-inspired power ballad.
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/music/austrian-drag
     
    If only Conchita, a/k/a Thomas “Tom” Neuwirth, had a sense of humor, he/she would have gone with Knock Wurst.

    • http://bookwormroom.com Bookworm

      Good Lord, Sadie.  I’m still laughing.

  • Kevin_B

    I don’t whether I should laugh, cry or get infuriated at the Conchita Wurst thing.

    In any case, the song and performance sucked. 

    • SADIE

      I had the same reaction to Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize – and his performance continues to suck!

    • http://bookwormroom.com Bookworm

      I agree.  I tried to watch the performance and it was dreadful.  That performer won solely because of dressing like a woman while carrying a beard like a man.  

      There’s something very deep and psychological going on with the Western world’s fixation with gender fluidity.  

      • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

        It’s not even interesting fluidity, either. Other cultures have done it better.

  • Charles Martel

    If only Conchita, a/k/a Thomas “Tom” Neuwirth, had a sense of humor, he/she would have gone with Knock Wurst.
     
    This is why meeting Sadie is on my bucket list. 

  • Tara S

    I’m reading through some different Bureau of Justice Statistics publications, and one fact jumped out at me that’s probably old news to most people, but is new to me: according to the National Crime Victimization Survey, the “total rate of sexual violence committed against U.S. female residents aged 12 or older declined 64% from a peak of 5.0 per 1,000 females in 1995 to 1.8 per 1,000 females in 2005. It then remained unchanged from 2005 to 2010.” 
     
    Now, that’s not what I would have expected from listening to the MSM. Does anybody have any knowledge about the cause(s) of the decrease?

    • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

      In Democrat fiefdoms, rape went up and goes unreported. Most unionized police are ordered to ignore it, to make the Democrat mayor look tough on crime.
       
      The rest of the country is arming up, and rapists tend to get shot first, thus eliminating the problem from spreading.

  • SADIE

    Bucket List:
     
    Speaking of which, since this is an open thread. Let me back up a bit. I regularly make a short shopping list, whatever is gone, near gone, gets replaced in the cupboards or frig. A dozen lists later, all of which included ice cream (just in case, I gotta an urge) stayed on the unchecked list for several months. I just couldn’t decide on a flavor and then like a bolt out of the blue – a flashback to the past it came to me – SPUMONI. The very next trip, it was the first thing in my cart. It was sitting happily in the freezer unopened for days, when I mentioned to an off-spring that I finally committed to the purchase.
     
    “What’s the purpose of buying it, if you’re not going to eat it” he said to me on the phone. Oh dear, shoot me. I opened it – I polished it off in one week and three pounds later, my flashback became a fleshback!

  • jj

    Tara – aging population seems to be the answer to most of this statistical conundrum.  (It sure ain’t smarter cops!)  Crime is mostly a problem emanating from the male cohort of 18 – 30 year olds, and as a percentage of the population there simply aren’t as many of them out there at the moment. 

  • Caped Crusader

    I just read the Pi Beta Phi, a nation women’s fraternity, has been accused of racism for having an “All You Can Eat” Taco festival to raise money for charity; a long standing event. Just waiting for the Chinese to be offended by buffets and demand they be closed. Then who and what is next?

    What has happened to this country that we have allowed a small segment of intellectual cowards to turn us into a nation of lily livered, chicken hearted. wimpy, whiney, caitiff, woosy, yellow bellied, nation of nothing but a bunch of chronic complainers, with nothing else to do but attempting to find something to be offended about constantly; all trivial?

    There is simply no reason to have armed forces anymore since these lunatics have forbidden us to win a war for the last 50 years. Just a waste of lives and money, and besides if we had to attack someone we might offend them in some way and have to apologize.

    My entire generation would have been sentenced to prison if we had to live in this type of environment. In the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s everyone had a class or group nickname, typically unflattering, but worn as a badge of acceptance by the group. One member of the class made a funny noise when he breathed and was called “Breath”. Another called “GoGo” using the first 2 letters of his names. Another named “Face” since he looked like an Italian movie star of the time. Another “Bad Apples”. due to his propensity for getting in trouble. The lone female called “Sarge”, who had been a Marine sergeant, and no class party considered over till she had danced the polka several times with another class member; they were masters! A two way radio enthusiast called “Chips”, due to his moniker.

    My wife, being the only girl in her class, was given a funnel by the boys in the class, since they were each assigned an exclusive food diet for five days and were to collect their urine in a large bottle  with a small opening for analysis. She thought it hilarious and thought up a retaliatory strike. Today they would all be expelled and might wind up in prison.

    I have read many places that the first thing elite collectivists try to destroy in a society is humor and, making each suspicious of the other. If we would all just laugh and say, “Surely you’re not serious, and trying to be a fascist mind controller and killer of free speech are you?, it’s time to speak up, and forcefully, or there will soon be a time you cannot! “Like it or lump it”, and, “Go to the chaplain and get your TS Card punched if you don’t like it” were common in yesteryear and need to see a rebirth!

  • Caped Crusader

    Forgot the best:
     
    Our class president all four years was a Christian Arab whose parents migrated in the late 1920’s. He was constantly asked where he had left his camel tied up. It was a daily joke–constantly! He and I often went to church together and told everyone the only problem we had was there was no place at the nearby cathedral to tie up a camel and since the dorm was just across the street we left him tied up there and just walked. Every class reunion the first thing he informs everyone is where he left his camel outside the restaurant and all have a huge laugh!

    • SADIE

      For you and your Christian Arab friend: http://www.panarabiaenquirer.com  It’s the equivalent of  The Onion. 
       

      • Caped Crusader

        Thanks Sadie:
         
        I didn’t see anything either would be interested in, but did not read. Went back and saw it was an Onion equivalent so will read something. If it is sarcastic will enjoy. Unfortunately Joe has battled Parkinsonism for 25 years and has never wanted a computer; unfortunately common in people my age group. My next door neighbor 84 won’t go near one. I remember hearing in 1994 when the WWW came out that if were not computer savvy in 10 years you would be looked at as a person who had to make a X when asked to sign their name. Those days are here! Fortunately we had a son who started in computers when age 9, so bought my first when they cost $9000 and had total memory of 48K. Paid off for he now researcher director for a cutting edge company in Palo Alto. Thanks for the tip!

        • SADIE

          The link I provided is sarcastic and snarkcastic, too. 
          To be honest, I was reluctant to dive into the big box screen back in the late 80’s. The owner of the management company thought it would be a time saver for me. One Monday, I arrived at work to find something about the size of a small VW sitting on my desk. The owner walked by while I was staring at the infringement on my space. He stood for a moment and waited for a reaction…I told him, “I don’t dust or do housework at the office, please remove the VW sized computer, because I have no intentions of learning how to operate it.”
          Had I only understood or challenged myself a bit more at the time. Some years later, it was no longer a choice but a necessity after moving to Israel. I was dutifully punished for my obstinacy in 80’s. It took a techie several months to switch the program to English, but I had to sort out everything first in a second language, only to relearn what the menu was in English.

  • Caped Crusader

    Admit to having a slightly twisted mind at times, especially for humor. I asked, above, if the Chinese would now demand their all you can eat buffets closed. And, if so, will this be considered another act of antisemitism?