Friday morning round-up and Open Thread

Victorian posy of pansiesYes, the site looks a little different.  Something went wrong, but my wonderful webmaster is working away to fix things.  I know, therefore, that my site will soon be better than before.  Meanwhile, I have wonderful stuff to share:

***

The headlines have been filled with stories about 90,000 youthful illegal aliens pouring over America’s southern border.

“Oh, my God!” shrieks the administration. “This is totally bizarre. We never intended for this to happen.”

Except it seems that someone intended to have something happen. How else to explain the advertisement on a federal employment website asking for people to work as escorts for 65,000 illegal alien children who would need “resettlement.”

I was going to say that I look forward to the explanation for that one, but I know the drive-by media won’t pursue it, so the administration won’t have to explain.

***

While I’m on the subject of strange things the administration is doing, Zero Hedge says that it appears as if the fed is deliberately creating a “bond run panic.”

Sometimes, the only explanation seems to be Cloward-Piven as applied, not just to the welfare system, but to all American systems.

***

Noah Rothman says that Hillary is finally getting the vetting she deserves from conservatives, who just complained about her in 2008, rather than investigating her. Clintonistas are getting nervous, and are working to ban conservatives from archives that may reveal more of Hillary’s dirty little secrets.

***

If you’ve ever wondered what a DemProg means when s/he says “I take full responsibility” for something that went wrong, Hillary has offered a handy-dandy translation. Basically, cutting through her fog of words, it means “I take no responsibility whatsoever, except for that bit where I said ‘I take full responsibility.'”

***

I am a procrastinator. I’m pretty good about posting, but my email correspondents know that I’m notoriously bad about quick replies, sometimes waiting weeks to get back to people. I’m binary. I either write back instantly (which I fear overwhelms the person on the other side) or I politely delay until my inbox is full, and I’ve lost track of things. Or maybe, as Megan McArdle explains, I’m showing the dark side of a writer’s perfectionism.

***

It’s old news now, but I still want to remind everyone that, in addition to all its other sins, the IRS also gave over a million pages of taxpayer information to the FBI. Naughty, naughty.

***

There’s a renewed debate about whether we should have gone into Iraq. Here’s what I think: On the intelligence data available in 2003, war seemed reasonable. If you accepted the merits of Bush’s theory — create a major democratic, stable country in the heart of the Middle East — war seemed reasonable. If you looked at the matter militarily, victory seemed possible. Even though our first effort was too weak, once we figured out our problem and had the Surge, victory was assured.

The one thing we didn’t factor into the war plan was the same thing that caused us to lose the war in Vietnam: DemProg opposition on the home front. So, next time we decide to go to war, the first thing to do is to subdue the DemProgs at home….

***

This is an interesting take on Obama’s decision to release the Gitmo 5 in exchange for a deserter and possible traitor. No matter how one spins it, it makes Obama look very, very bad.

***

A video’s been making the rounds: A class salutatorian was told that he couldn’t mention his faith. He did anyway.

Conservatives are impressed by his courage; DemProgs are outraged by his daring to express such evil views. I mean, that’s what’s going on, right? We don’t let people stand in a public forum and express evil views such as Naziism or Christianity.

What I want to know is when did Christianity, which is still the majority religion in the U.S., become a viewpoint so evil that private citizens can no longer voice it in public?

***

Patricia Dickson explains why voting Republican would benefit blacks, just as surely as it did when the Dems were openly racist (slavery, KKK, Jim Crow, etc.). Sadly, her logic will (a) never cross over from the conservative blogosphere to most black Americans and (b) even if it did cross over, it wouldn’t convince them because they are too deeply in thrall to the notion of victim identity, rather than to being an individual whose needs are ill-served by being part of the DemProg Borg collective.

***

Speaking of DemProg racist Borg collectives, Rhymes with Right says that, if the Washington Redskins must give up their identity, there are a lot of other corporate logos that need to go too.

***

The Texas GOP platform is getting a lot of heat. Jon Stewart did an obscenity-laced rant attacking the bit saying that, if gay people want, they should be able to try therapy aimed at changing their sexual desires. As far as Stewart is concerned, that kind of choice is forbidden. If you’re gay, you must stay gay, no matter what.

But I digress. What I wanted to say is that, if you’re a Texan, you may be interested in this proposed GOP platform that Greg, from Rhymes with Right, put together.

***

Kevin D. Williamson says that, while the government may not be using the words “inflation,” we’re suffering from inflation. I agree. Every time I buy groceries or fill my gas tank, I think to myself, “I can afford these escalating high prices, but how are poorer people managing?” If feels like 1979 all over again.

***

One of my political Rubicon moments was back in the 1980s when I realized that “whole language” reading was product of a toxic combination of unions and the Democrat Party.  It’s also practically criminal, insofar as it deprives kids of the opportunity to learn how to read. And worse, it keeps coming back and is always just as bad as before.

***

I’ve ranted and raved before about bureaucrats and the fact that they become dangerously self-perpetuating entities. Jonah Goldberg says the same, but with wit, elegance, and erudition. I want to write like that one day.

***

No, says Richard Baehr, Israel is not “destabilizing” the Middle East by having the temerity to look for her kidnapped boys. What’s destablizing the Middle East is a blend of toxic Leftist politics and Islam.

***

I finally figured out Leftists remind me of when they throw around that 97% figure in connection with scientific agreement. Barbara Boxer phrased it in a way that triggered a memory. First, Boxer (emphasis mine):

We should all know we must take action to reduce harmful carbon pollution, which 97% of scientists agree is leading to dangerous climate change that threatens our families.

And now the memory about that phrase — the one saying that “a majority of scientists agree” about something:

38-Lucky-Strike-cigarette-ad-more-doctors-say-less-irritating

23-camel-cigarettes-ad-more-doctors-smoke-camels

13-camel-cigarettes-ad-scietifically-proven-

36-chesterfield-cigarettes-are-good-for-you-ad

34-kent-cigarettes-ad-scientists-smoke-kent

“Scientists agree” about a lot of stupid things.

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Comments

  1. says

    “97% of scientists agree”…..I remember all those cigarette ads from when I was a kid. I did NOT think to link them up with the CAGW nonsense, and I’m really grateful that you did!!

    I’ll be sharing this over and over and over again in the next few months and (please No, G-d) years!!

  2. qr4j says

    If a gay person wants to try being de-gayed, that is his/her choice. It may or may not be a good choice. If a gay person wants to engage a therapist who can de-gay him/her, then go for it. If people are free to change their gender, why are they not free to change their orientation — or at least try? Perhaps it is impossible; perhaps it is not impossible. But it should be left to that person to decide what to do.

    On the flip side, there may be straight people who really would like to be gay for some reason. They aren’t attracted to members of the same sex. But they figure there’s an advantage to being gay. I say: Go for it! Get therapy if you want. Change your orientation if you want.

    Religion may or may not approve of gay activities. If you choose to go against your religion, that’s your choice. You can always change religions to one that you agree with.

    But you cannot readily change governments. Governments should not interfere with someone’s personal life — or should severely limit doing so. Currently the government cannot deny a woman’s personal choice to terminate the life of her unborn child. (Of course, if someone else does it against her will, it is murder. Makes no sense that choice determines whether something is a human or not.) I don’t see why the government should be meddling in one’s personal choice to seek therapy to be gay or not to be gay.

  3. shirleyelizabeth says

    “I can afford these escalating high prices, but how are poorer people managing?”

    It’s rough. My husband recently received an (much needed) $8k raise. We live to a pretty strict budget, I shop sales and discount stores, yet we have found it increasingly difficult to stay on top financially, let alone able to save contingency funds. I want to cry every time I try to make my grocery budget stretch to fit our needs. Or buy meat.
    It, of course, doesn’t help that our monthly health insurance premium for our family of four now exceeds our mortgage payment. Would love to get the same value out of that as our home provides. (Would love to have another option, but you know, it’s the law now! yay.)

  4. lee says

    What is one supposed to do with/about the material they research in an archive? My recollection of when I was doing research in archives was that IF I published anything, I was to credit the archive in the bibliography/footnotes. Not a single one of the archives that I visited require me to submit a form to “publish materials.”

    Now, I know I couldn’t go out and publish the stuff I researched wholesale, like say, Some Historical Person’s diary, but had I published an article about said Historical Person, I could QUOTE the diary, even heavily, as long as the quote was footnoted, and the archive credited. One takes a LOT of notes in archives. It’s crazy to have to go back and get permission to publish.

    That being said, I do know (not that I had experience with this) that the holders of the Gershwin rights do not even allow scholars to quote any Gershwin lyrics. Which has made for some convoluted scholarly writing about the Gershwins and their work.

    (And I don’t understand HOW they can do this, I just know that the archivist at a theater library where I did a lot of work talked about this AT LENGTH. It’s been about thirty years and this could have changed…)

    • JKB says

      Instapundit had the letter the paper’s lawyers sent to the library basically wiping out any position they have and challenging their ban on 1st Amend grounds (it’s a state university). They did it because they wrote without knowledge, and ironically for a library, reference to the law or custom.

      My view of those who get all copyright happy, the author deserves obscurity. In another 20 or 30 years, few will have memory of MLK’s ‘I have a Dream’ speech. Sad it will drift away into the ether but that is what the heirs want.

      Why quote Gershwin’s lyrics, just don’t write about Gershwin. Consign him to the scrap heap of private knowledge that dies with the holder.

      • lee says

        Loved the letter. Loved that they quoted the ALA.

        My limited archive experience was all with private archives. I never worked with any associated with a state university. Didn’t think about the things the lawyers brought up on the letter. Which makes it even more heinous what the librarian did.

        I agree with you: if the gate tenders of the Gershwin works are such jackasses, stop writing about them. But, well, academics. What can you say…

  5. JKB says

    I hear the classmates of the kid who dared speak his faith were scandalized. Oh, wait, that wasn’t booing or horrified silence I heard. Must do the school officials good to see that the couldn’t cow the students. Sadly, since much of the education is indoctrination, the damage will make frequent appearances.

    In regards to education and the “appeal to authority”, I just listened to this from Alan McFarlane, a British academic, reading from his book to his not yet, 17-yr old granddaughter. This essay is ‘Does education destroy knowledge?’ A nice trek through the history of education and knowledge transfer. He doesn’t get radical but you can see from his historical account we are in a period of knowledge for indoctrination. And also a period where education can no longer transfer the knowledge necessary.

    Personally, I think the poor transfer is from the lack of innovative thought on education, all trying to use tech to speed up the old ways instead of seeking new ways.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aVTXAgwOeqU&index=14&list=PLTCcS6e700aOaaunWRRhjVi_DwUMoB5Vd

    I’ve listened to several of his essays, the one on love and marriage is interesting as well.

  6. Mike Devx says

    It’s just my opinion, but the new cut off to the “Read More…” link on your posts on your home page is too early in the post, Book, I think you should display more content before the cut-off point.

  7. Libby says

    Wow, yes, inflation. It seems like overnight everything jumped about 20% + in price – at the grocery store, at the office supply store. etc.. Scary.
    * * *
    Liked that kid’s moxie in defying the school’s guidelines – “speaking truth to power” as some people used to say. I imagine if the censored graduation speaker story were re-told so that the student wanted to come out, and the administration forbade him to discuss his sexuality, and then he did so regardless, your friends would be praising him to the heavens & cursing the close-minded administrators. *Sigh* Up-side down world we’re living in nowadays. Can’t mention the bible, but you also can’t fly the stars & stripes because it might offend the Muslim community (a country’s existence insulting a religion is a non-sequitur, no?).
    * * *
    I know it no longer matters in the age of Obama, but the IRS providing confidential tax info to the FBI was illegal in addition to being naughty. So I’m wondering how many other agencies received such files considering the number of federal agencies that True The Vote’s Catherine Engelbrect and others targeted by the IRS.

  8. JKB says

    Inflation is coming both directions. I’ve noticed prices increasing but the quality is decreasing. Meat quality is noticeable to me. I see the price, then look at the cut. The cut looks a bit off to the lesser end.

  9. JKB says

    Just read this very good exposition on Why AArabs Lose Wars from 1999. http://www.meforum.org/441/why-arabs-lose-wars

    Good info on why the Iraqi army of 250,000 is collapsing before the ISIL forces of 7000.

    I couldn’t help but see some similarities between the Arab culture described and the DemProgs.

    “These attributes included over-centralization, discouraging initiative, lack of flexibility, manipulation of information, and the discouragement of leadership at the junior officer level.”

      • JKB says

        I don’t know, it seems like the DemProgs get their marching orders from the same place. There are factional variances but that is just internal power plays.

        One thing we don’t know is who are the second tier players. Hillary, Biden, Kerry, Reid, Pelosi, but who are the farm team? Can’t let them get the limelight or the regime might suffer.

        • says

          The Left gets a theme. Like “someone rid me of this priest” or the JournoList community or Hitler’s wishes being carried out without Hitler giving the orders.

          Their actual structure is decentralized along warlord or tribal factions.

  10. says

    Turner Diaries inspired McVeigh. But McVeigh also said that targeted assassinations of leadership, inspired by Unintended Consequences, was something he would have preferred to use if he had read the book before bombing Oklahoma.

    Think about that for a moment. If you had a choice between bombing everyone in Libya, or merely shooting the leaders that were killing Americans (including the US Regime), which one would you pick?

  11. says

    My theory about the colleges is that this is a stop gap, preventing outside research. They will buy enough time for them to “cleanse” any damaging information to the Clintons, by destroying the evidence, ala Sandy Berger.

    Then they will re open and say, “look, you right wing fascist, we have nothing to hide, look for yourself”

  12. SADIE says

    So, it’s not just me who has noticed the rise in the cost of luxury items – FOOD.  
    JKB pointed to the quality (lack of) and it explains why I’ve increased my use of herbs and spices on everything except in a bowl of Cherrios (store brand). The Feds have been printing money to the tune of $85 billion a month for some time now. All that ink is expensive (((sigh))).   Kinda adds several new meanings to being “Fed up”.

    • says

      All printed money is a form of wealth redistribution.

      Say there’s only 10$ in the system, you have 2 and the Democrats have 8. The Dems can increase their wealth by printing 10 more dollars, giving you 1 and keeping 9 for themselves. Now you have 3$ and the Dems have 17$. Did you get rich now that you have 3/20 of all wealth compared to your poorer 2/10 wealth?

      So the Dems keep doing this, handing out free money. But every time… they get richer and the poor gets poorer, but the poor thinks they are getting richer.

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