Mid-day Monday round-up and Open Thread

Victorian posy of pansiesThis may qualify as my most streamlined round-up ever, because I have to leave in an hour to take my Mom to the doctor. She’s getting a bit loopier, but it’s a good thing. She’s forgetting to brood non-stop about her pain and other travails and, it turns out, when she’s not brooding, she’s not bothered much about those same pains and other travails. She hasn’t been so cheerful in decades. There’s a life lesson in there somewhere, but I’ve got work to do, so I’m not taking the time to tease it out.

Now, off to the races.


At Crimes & Consequences, Bill Otis predicts that Obama will pardon Bergdahl ASAP so as to avoid any embarrassing revelations from a court martial or other hearing. Bill includes a brilliant parody pardon announcement which Obama can freely copy without anyone noticing that it didn’t originally emanate from the White House.


John Podhoretz details how Obama’s media mastery has cratered with the Bergdahl debacle. I’ll just add that Obama and his team weren’t really all that gifted. They were aided by an all-encompassing media and Hollywood establishment that shilled for them mercilessly, and by a little corruption on the side. It’s just that, ultimately, Lincoln was right: you cannot fool all of the people all of the time (although, contrary to Lincoln, nowadays you can have a good long run of fooling most of them most of the time).


One of the fundamental problems with the Bergdahl fiasco is that, while Obama and the media understand image and messenging, they don’t understand the military. The military’s outrage at the Gitmo 5 exchange — sending high value combatants back into battle in exchange for a deserter — entirely eluded (and still eludes) the DemProgs. How else to explain Obama’s belief that taking up Yoga is a good reason to release future jihadists?

Indeed, Obama and his fellow travelers understand the military so little that it’s normal in Obama’s America to imprison troops who kill the enemy as part of protecting American lives and advancing America’s military interests.

The core problem is that Obama doesn’t view the military as a necessary deterrent in times of peace and as our greatest protection in times of war. He views it as an embarrassment. No wonder he wants so desperately to change it in ways that destroy its combat readiness.


One other thing — and maybe I’m reading too much into it — but I think one of those “rehabilitated” terrorists has announced that he’s going to expand his post-release activities to include terrorist attacks against Israel:

And one longtime detainee, a former bodyguard for Osama bin Laden, is now harmless because he’s going to start a “milk and honey farm.”

A “milk and honey” farm is a peculiar phrase. People have dairies or raise bees. But “milk and honey” farm? Here’s what I think:  “Land of milk and honey” is a very specific expression in the Bible, at Exodus 33:3. There, God instructs the Jews to go to Israel, which he describes as a “land flowing with milk and honey.”  So that’s why I think this Gitmo dude isn’t heading off to sit in a pastoral wonderland, having turned his swords into plowshares but, instead, am pretty certain he’s going off to join Hamas or Hezbollah.


While we’re on the subject of jihadists:

Middle Easterners cling to guns and religion


I look forward to the day when the same culture that has bred the jihadists can instead boast of having created useful things. Fundamendalist Islam is a parasite culture, one that creates nothing and focuses its energies on co-opting whatever the West has to offer and then perverting those things’ purposes (such as aiming airplanes at buildings). Israel, on the other hand, is innovative and life-saving even when its focus is war.

Israel’s innocuous, too, unless you’re determined to hate her:

Israel the aggressor


Two items from the environmentalist food Nazi front: (1) The FDA will no longer allow cheese to be aged on wood boards, never mind that wood is a natural anti-microbial; (2) and the DemProgs and their fellow travelers are fighting ferociously against a genetically modified rice that has the possibility to alleviate a great deal of hunger and malnutrition around the world.

This is what cultists do (and make no mistake, the climate change “science” crowd is a religious cult that has less and less to do with actual data and analysis).  When DemProgs tell you that “they’re the party of the people,” remember that they mean “dead people.” After all, with their abortion and environmental fetishes, they are busy working hard to de-populate the world (something that the more honest of them will admit).

By the way, the cheese board post isn’t just informative, but also really funny. And if you want something else funny, you can’t miss Mark Steyn’s riff on climate change lunacy, along with an update about his own lawsuit entanglement with dishonest climate “scientist” Michael “hockey stick” Mann.


If you were wondering why the Electoral College matters, this image might help.


The “Special Relationship” between America and England is gone, killed not just by a president hostile to England, but by Leftism (and every policy decision that entails) and changing demographics.


One of the things that repeatedly proves that the DemProg lumpen proletariat thinks only at the most shallow levels is their inability to distinguish between acts done with malice, or done to educate or to express admiration. The most recent case in point is a teacher who was investigated for showing blackface footage when he taught his students about racial discrimination in America.

In other words, he wasn’t celebrating blackface as a good thing; he was teaching it as an embarrassing thing in our nation’s history. Fortunately, some sanity lingers, because while the administration acted stupid, parents and students are celebrating the teacher for actually educating students.


Honestly, Sen. Harry Reid ought to be a candidate for sainthood. He selflessly sold his home (for $1.7 million) for the people. No, I’m not kidding.


Kissenger famously said that fights in academia are so vicious because the stakes are so low — petty people, petty arguments. Robert Oscar Lopez explains that the people are just as petty, but their insanely stupid, vicious fights have a reach that is now bigger and infinitely more damaging.


Stephen Carter manfully defends legal scholar and gay marriage supporter Douglas Laycock against the homofascists. But, I hear you asking “Why does Laycock need a defense from the homofascists if he supports gay marriage?”

The answer is that Laycock was insufficiently pure.  He had the temerity to suggest that religious liberty may trump compliance with laws that are not rooted in the Constitution. Carter even goes so far as to say that the homofascist are behaving in the same way as McCarthy on his worst day.

My take:  Revolutions always eat their own.  They start out pure(ish) and end with bloody purges.  Always.


Jon Meis prevented an attempted mass shooting from escalating. He did so through old-fashioned bravery and ingenuity. Doug Giles explains what lessons we can learn from Meis’s refusal to cower.


Greeks have a right to be disgusted by what their current government has done to them (although most of them voted for that government for decades when they thought it was handing out free things). The problem is that the Greeks, like the Germans before them, think that the answer is to be found in antisemitic, xenophobic, totalitarian fascism — modeled, in the Greeks’ case, directly on the Nazis.  Ironic, really, when you remember that we’ve always considered Greece to be the birthplace of Western democracy


Here’s another irony, closer to home and very worrisome:  I’ve read that the Spanish Influenza, which may have killed up to 100 million people around the world, was America’s fault.  When America got into WWI, she quickly conscripted as many young men as she good and crowded them together in training camps.  This was a perfect incubation for the influenza to become more virulent.  Then, she shipped them off through America to Europe, providing the perfect vector.  Think of that when you read about Mexican children, many with infectious diseases, first crowded together in unsanitary centers and then quickly distributed to God knows where.


We all know that, DemProg rhetoric to the contrary, the Democrat party is the party of the extremely rich (as well as the extremely poor). Republicans tend to sweep in working class and lower middle class. The upper middle classes are up for grabs, depending on whether they went to college or not to earn that money.

Michael Medved points out something else interesting: To the extent Republicans elect wealthy candidates, their candidates tend to be self-made. Democrats, however, prefer dynasties. How very . . . uh . . . un-democratic of them.


iOwnTheWorld has its own unique take on Obama and the dumb bells (no, not the cabinet). You can also enjoy Jimmy Kimmel’s surprisingly funny take on that infamous Polish workout (and no, this is not a Polish joke):

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  1. says

    “Ironic, really, when you remember that we’ve always considered Greece to be the birthplace of Western democracy”
    Which is why the Founding Fathers didn’t really like democracy to begin with. Ever read Plato’s Republic? They did.

  2. says

    America is more sympathetic to the Spartans, a society based upon feudal aristocracy and helot serfs, than we are to Athens and their tendency to stab their generals and successful politicians in the back.
    I wouldn’t be surprised the Left poisoned that child themselves, and used it as a pretext to give more cheese business to Democrats while getting rid of conservative small time family businesses.

  3. lee says

    The Koran describes paradise with a river of milk and a river of honey.* So, I think we know what this terrorist is interested in… Even if the Clown on Chief does not.
    * Clearly, Mo “borrowed’ the milk and honey riff from the Bible.

  4. lee says

    Regarding the Great Flu Pandemic: you’re buying into a we bit of historical revisionism there. We did with our troops what everyone else was also doing: cramming in close quarters.
    The flu was a fascinating one–the first wave was mild by comparison and those who contracted it had resistance when the really virulent wave struck. Which really hit the 20 to 40 age range.
    It was already going wild in Europe, with or without American soldiers.
    In Europe, European soldiers were crammed in bases, trenches, trains, hospitals…  

  5. SADIE says

    “One of the fundamental problems with the Bergdahl fiasco is that ….”
    The list is endless, but I’ll begin and end on this one: Commander-in-Chief is a title NOT a rank.  Then again, we are dealing with a ‘rank’ presidency in an urban dictionary kind of way.

  6. Matt_SE says

    People keep saying that Obama was tone-deaf to the implications of the Bergdahl deal, and surprised by the blowback.
    But this doesn’t comport with my understanding of Obama. Everything he does is political. Every. Single. Thing.
    I have a hard time imagining that he couldn’t see how this move might be controversial. Instead, I think he was floating a trial balloon while hoping that the MSM would again cover for him. He planned for two eventualities by releasing the worst terrorists first:
    1) If there was backlash, precluding further deals, he would at least have freed the big fish.
    2) If there was no/muted backlash, freeing the lower-threat terrorists would seem easy by comparison, allowing him to empty Gitmo.
    He must realize the severity of the backlash, now that many Dems are openly criticizing the deal. Pardoning Bergdahl would be the straw that broke that camel’s back. I doubt he’ll do it.

  7. Wolf Howling says

    Genetic modification is as old as written history.  There’s an example of it in Exodus, if I recall correctly.  
    As to the WWI-era flu, what’s the surprise?  Disease follows standing armies at war – People in close quarters under extremes of stress, often half starved and half frozen and thus with a compromised immune system.  It’s why Pestilence is one of the four horseman.  I think WWII was the first war in recorded history where death from injuries in battle exceeded those from disease.  
    I’ve been doing some research on the Revolutionary War for a project I’m working on.  The big epidemic during that war was small pox.  Indeed, it was a small pox epidemic that destroyed the Army we sent north to conquer Canada.  We had taken Montreal and were in a siege of Quebec when the pox hit and laid waste to half of our troops, plus half of all the reinforcements we sent.  Otherwise Canada would be the 51st state.  By 1776, Washington was so concerned with small pox destroying our other field armies that he required all new enlistees undergo variolation before joining with the Army.  In the end, Americans lost over twice as many people in that war to disease than they did to battle related deaths.  

  8. Mike Devx says

    Obama has mostly succeeded in moving the VA scandal off hte front pages.  You gotta grant him that part of his nefarious strategy.
    The problem for him?  Three months from now, all those veterans who died while on the secret VA death-panel waiting lists?  They will still be dead.

  9. says

    So this is what people meant back in 2008 when they responded to the general public’s surprise at Hussein’s actions.
    “You ain’t seen nothing yet”
    So have we seen all of it yet?

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