Aurora and our deadly sins

Is the media to blame for the Aurora shootings?

I would like to make the case that it is, not for any specific action that any specific media outlet has taken, but by its very nature.

In 1970, Alvin Toffler published his seminal work, Future Shock, in which he predicted that one of the big challenges that we would face in the here-and-now is an over-saturation of media-mediated information stimuli. I believe that he predicted this more accurately than even he imagined.

I propose that the most pernicious damage wrought by the media is the way that it amplifies the worst in human nature. Our Judeo-Christian heritage likes to emphasize the seven deadly sins destructive to our nature and our relationship with God, to whit: gluttony, greed, anger, envy, sloth, lust and pride.

We live in an unheard of access to wealth and information. It isn’t hard to see how our material cornucopia enables the sins of Gluttony and Greed. We are a society, as Dinesh Dsouza famously remarked, where even the poor can be fat. Sloth, well…we have a welfare state that does its utmost to protect our citizenry from the consequences of sloth, so naturally we have more of it. Anger? We enjoy a world of violent sports, video games and cinema and our media rewards demagogues for whipping-up resentments based on race or class. Flash mobs, anyone? What about Lust? Even small children have ready access to pornography in popular magazines, the cinema or from the internet…it’s being normalized. Envy? Messages that stoke peoples’ sense of entitlement to other peoples’ labor and possessions find a ready audience. The media constantly reminds us of how much “the other” has that we don’t.

The most deadly of sins, according to the ancients, is pride or vanity. It is pride that drives people to seek fame, be it by demanding the latest fashions, coloring their hair, decorating their bodies, performing on American Idol or filming themselves having sex or beating up innocent people. Pride or vanity is the craving to be noticed and acting out violence for the Videocam lense is vanity writ large.

This, as the ancients point out, has always been the case. Two hundred years ago, however, it was much harder for people to gain social approval for their worst human excesses or to get noticed for committing mass murder. First, it was hard to get the one’s primal pride messaged out beyond one’s immediate locale. Second, community involvement and trip-wire taboos imposed strict guidelines on and early intervention into aberrant human behavior. Third, when self-control failed, retribution tended to be swift.

Today, by contrast, people are encouraged by our media environment to act out (is there anything more narcissistic than “reality TV”?). We live in a Kardashian society where even young kids are encouraged to seek media fame.

People can now project their worst sinful excesses onto vaste audiences with minimal effort. Once having done so, they are guaranteed 24/7 news coverage, book rights, movie scripts and the protective umbrella of the modern justice system. Whoo-hoo! The Joker rules!

Holmes, like a string of mass murders before him, wanted fame. He wanted to be noticed. Because his pride got the best of him. Our media culture provided all the tools that he needed to amplified the worst consequences of his human nature. Take away our media-saturated environment and there would not be nearly the incentive.

So, what say you? How do we fix this?

“It was pride that changed angels into devils; it is humility that makes men as angels” – St. Augustine of Hippo.

La Media – Misleading by Misdirection

Years ago, the Bookworm Room took a leadership position in challenging man-made global warming dogma and I would comfortably assert that we have been winning the arguments. However, the battle is far from over.

Today’s Chicago Tribune posted a column published by two credentialed climate scientists from the U. of Illinois, attributing this winter’s warm winter conditions and tornado activity to man-made CO2 emissions in the atmosphere.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/ct-perspec-0606-climate-20120606,0,1084142.story

This column misleads by misdirection.

The warmer-than-normal weather this winter and early spring was the result of an extended Pacific Ocean-warming phenomenon called “La Nina”. This phenomenon has been linked to diverse weather conditions around the world, from severe drought conditions in our Southwest and Brazil, to warmer-than-normal winters in the upper Midwest to reduced monsoon activity in southern Asia. Warmer-than-normal winter and spring temperatures are also conducive to tornado formation when they clash and create turbulence with cold air from the winter jet stream.

Keep in mind that one of the paramount principles of scientific endeavor, routinely violated by man-made climate change proponents, is “Occam’s Razor”, which stipulates that you look at the simplest, most obvious explanations first!

So, let’s ask the question… are increasing levels of atmospheric CO2, present in concentrations measured in parts-per-million, responsible for massive warming events in the central Pacific? Does this sound like a reasonable explanation?

The best leading indicator of a La Nina event is not the amount of CO2 in the air, but subsurface water temperatures (i.e., below the ocean surface, not at the surface where CO2 would be absorbed from the air) around the Pacific Rim. The most likely cause for these temperature upwellings, supported by satellite and deep-sea surveyor data, is underwater volcanic activity, which we are only just beginning to understand. Bookworm aficionados are very well-read and aware, so they will recall reading that these past few years have been seismically active around the Pacific Rim. Undersea volcanos, like terrestrial volcanos, release huge amounts of heat, which must go somewhere. In water and in air, heat rises.

http://strata-sphere.com/blog/index.php/archives/18084

After La Nina ended this spring, we returned to cooler than normal temperatures in the Midwest and eastern U.S., which will probably persist through 2012, as a countervailing, cooling El Nino begins to form in the Pacific. In fact, the last 10 years have seen a consistent, measurable period of global cooling, not heating, even as atmospheric CO2 concentrations increased.

In addition, the pioneering work of Danish astrophysicist Henrik Svensmark, a man who’s name may one day rank in the Astronomer’s pantheon with Galileo and Copernicus, has laid out testable theories on how solar activity affects cloud cover, precipitation and global temperatures that are completely changing perceptions regarding climate change and, frankly, render the effects of CO2 (which, in the end, is just an insignificant greenhouse gas when compared to water) on climate as irrelevant. Thus far, the tests of his theories are coming out very positive and serve to explain both observed climate warming and cooling cycles.

The facade of man-made global warming is crumbling, but far too many credentialed “scientists” have vested their reputations and research budgets in man-made global warming postulations for them to give up lightly. So, they double down because they have to. Unfortunately, too many citizens will be fooled by their credentials to question their premises.

Given the credentials of the authors of this Chicago Tribune column, they in all likelihood knew all of this. They just didn’t feel that the Chicago Tribune’s readers should know about this details, because it doesn’t happen to fit their ideological meme. So, they misdirect.

Stop the OPUEM trade!

DQ raise very important points about the power of language. The examples of “austerity” and “stimulus” certainly need to be addressed. But, let me address another problematic term: “government spending”. Far too many people seem to equate government spending (syn. taxes, benefits, welfare, rebates, investments, stimuli, grants, outlays, funding, etc.) with “free” money.

All these terms that reference government spending also generate warm fuzzies with large portions of the population that cannot or will not equate such activities with government expropriation of the labor, sweat, money and intellectual capital of “other” people without their express permission.

Thus, I would like to propose a new word, “opuem”, an acronym for “Other People’s Unfairly Expropriated Money”.

It’s a far more efficient use of language to distill so many different terms into a single, comprehensive concept and thereby change the nature of public discourse in very positive, enlightening ways, as for example:

“The Democrat Congress, with the support of the President, voted to drastically increase opuem for dispersal to favored but potentially restless constituencies in order to keep them quiet, loyal and dependent. The Republican opposition voiced its concerns that there is far too much demand for opuem by society today, and that excessive opuem dependency will prove detrimental to economic productivity and societal well-being.”

This term, opuem, should not to be confused with a similar term, “hopium”, conceived by Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass as a descriptor for current White House emanations.

Today hubris – tomorrow, nemesis

We recognize the narcissism of our Commander-in-Chief. It has been the subject of many an article by his detractors. Here, for example, is a harsh assessment of the depth of his pathological disorder by a purported MD psychiatrist (I say “purported”, because the identity of the author is hidden and therefore cannot be verified):

http://www.economicnoise.com/2012/05/02/a-psychologist-analyzes-the-president/

I don’t know enough to properly vet this article from a medical or psychiatric point of view, but enough rings true to be truly worried. We should all worry and pray for the health and well-being of Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng, for example, who was kicked out of the U.S. embassy in violation of a long history of American embassies providing sanctuary to human rights activists. Why?

The article cited above provides a clue:

Narcissists have no interest in things that do not help
them to reach their personal objective. They are focused on one thing
alone and that is power. All other issues are meaningless to them and
they do not want to waste their precious time on trivialities.
Anything that does not help them is beneath them and does not deserve
their attention.

If an issue raised in the Senate does not help Obama in one way or
another, he has no interest in it. The “present” vote is a safe vote.
No one can criticize him if things go wrong. Those issues are unworthy
by their very nature because they are not about him.

Sadly, Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng serves no purpose for the agenda of our narcissist in chief. He and his family, therefore, are dispensable.

In ancient Greece, narcissism was the handmaiden of hubris. It was a punishable crime, as the Greeks recognized that hubris inevitably led to destruction by nemesis. The author of the linked article worries that, should Obama be repudiated by the American people, nemesis will express itself through a backlash against African Americans, the rise of white supremacists and race wars. I disagree. I believe that we, as a people, are well beyond that.

What we do need to worry about is that a failing Obama, faced with the repudiation of his narcissistic world view by his country, will do things far more drastic to wreak revenge upon his detractors and cement his self image as the man who changed the world. Think a moment about the horrific actions of another pathological narcissist cited in the article, Jim Jones, for example.

I believe that there is a good chance that, despite widespread sabotage of the American electoral system by the Democrats, that Romney will win. What we really need to worry about is the inevitable arrival of nemesis. Let’s hope that our country’s systems of checks and balances, designed by our Founding Fathers, hold fast.

In the meantime, the rest of the world and its human rights activists have good cause to be worried. We live in dangerous times.

 

 

Lynch mobs and hit lists

You already know how I feel about the George Zimmerman – Trayvon Martin affair and the Obama Administration and its lap dog-media sycophants ginning up a lynching party to “get” Zimmerman and a few random white people to fill the role pending trial. Zimmerman’s guilt has already been decided in the media’s public square.

Now, via the Wall Street Journal‘s inestimable Kimberly Strassel, comes news that Administration is, in the words of Washington beltway attorney Ted Olson, putting up the names of major Romney donors on “wanted posters” in government offices, releasing their names to the public, and libeling their reputations.

“The message from the man who controls the Justice Department (which can indict you), the SEC (which can fine you), and the IRS (which can audit you), is clear: You made a mistake donating that money”, writes Strassel.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304723304577368280604524916.html?mod=WSJ_article_comments#articleTabs%3Darticle

I don’t know if you can access this article without a subscription, but Strassel’s “The President Has a List: Barack Obama attempts to intimidate contributors to Mitt Romney’s campaign” article in today’s WSJ points out a litany of presidential abuses of power by the Obama regime, including:

  • Making individual citizens the object of his vitriol.
  • Personal attacks on corporations and industry segments.
  • Legal assaults on constitutional rights of free speech by corporations.
Add to that list the looting of American taxpayers through government policy-driven largesse to Democrat crony capitalists and political insiders. For an excellent review on one way how this is done, I highly recommend reading entrepreneur Jerome J. Schmitt’s excellent insights in today’s American Thinker:

We continue our slouch into the serfdom of Liberal Fascism. Sad to say, I suspect that the large segments of the population that are not cheering these developments are either yawning in general ennui or too glued to the mindless drivel of videoworld to realize how our /their wealth and freedoms are irrevocably slip, slip, slipping away.

George and Trayvon

I don’t know what the facts are about what actually happened between Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman. Very few people know the facts.

What I do know is this, however: there were many in the the Liberal/Left community that passed instant judgment on Zimmerman’s guilt based upon their own prejudices. I also know that there are many among the lap-dog media that deliberately ignored and distorted evidence to frame Zimmerman’s supposed guilt. I also know that the judicial dye was cast by the most powerful political and legal forces in the country, going all the way up to the Attorney General and President of the United States. In addition, militant groups like the Black Panthers could with legal impunity issue death threats, offer bounties and broadcast the address of Zimmerman’s family (or so they thought) for the purpose of violent retribution. Now we hear that the Florida State Attorney has decided to throw out a grand jury assessment and turn the trial into a political circus.

So, here’s my question: will we witness a trial…or a lynching?

ObamaCare isn’t free!

One of the more perplexing yet insightful arguments made in support of Obamacare was made by none other than Nancy Pelosi. It is interesting, because it exposes such a fundamental shallowness in the Progressive-Left world view.

Here is what she said:

““A healthier life, the liberty to pursue happiness, free of the constraints that lack of healthcare might provide to a family,” she said. “If you want to be photographer, a writer, an artist, a musician, you can do so. If you what to start a business, if you want to change jobs, under the Affordable Care Act, you have that liberty to pursue your happiness.” (h/t The Hill)

http://www.theblaze.com/stories/pelosi-defends-obamacare-using-declaration-of-independence/

By this reasoning, Government grants liberties by taking adult responsibilities off the shoulders of its citizens. I’m talking about the responsibility of each citizen to create and contribute value to society at-least equivalent to the value of the goods and services that citizen wishes to take from society. Such entitlement rights as referenced by Ms. Pelosi are the so-called “positive” rights about which Progressive-Leftists like to carp.

Of course, this same argument could be taken further than just health care. Food, for example, or transportation, toothpaste, toilet paper. The more the government buys for you, the less you have to worry about actually earning a living to justify what you take from society.

In this Progressive-Left “no worries” universe, this works just swell, because goods and services are created out of thin air by government decree. However, in the real world, goods and services must necessarily come from somewhere and that somewhere is the product of human capital, sweat and labor. Someone must provide those medical products and services and the ability to provide for such services, barring slave labor, must come at some expense. Progressive-Leftists, however, seldom think this deep.

So, for the recipients of government largesse, there may not be any worries about getting “free” stuff, but for the creators and funders of those goods and services, it means that they will be compelled to work to provide government-mandated goods and service at prices and under conditions mandated by said government.

Except for the government-anointed elite recipients of such goods and services, this hardly provides a compelling vision of “freedom”, does it?!

Obama: the double-down-on-disaster President

I’ve come to appreciate that, whatever the unfolding disaster, Obama’s standard MO is to double down. For example:

Gas prices were too high under George W. Bush? OK, double them!

ObamaCare costs are unaffordable? OK, double them!

http://campaign2012.washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/cbo-obamacare-cost-176-trillion-over-10-yrs/425831

Green energy companies fail and go bankrupt? OK, double green energy subsidies!

http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/e2-wire/210295-obamas-budget-doubles-down-on-renewable-energy

Obama Keynesian Stimulus is an abject failure? OK…propose doubling the stimulus!

http://blog.american.com/2012/01/the-obama-stimulus-how-big-government-screwed-up-the-big-spend/

Debt increase under the Bush Administration was too high? OK, double it.

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-57400369-503544/national-debt-has-increased-more-under-obama-than-under-bush/

Iraq, Yemen and Afghanistan at risk of falling under sway of Al Qaeda? OK, add Egypt, Tunisia, Libya to the list.

Get it? Brings to mind Einstein’s definition of insanity, doesn’t it?

 

 

 

Pay my college loans, D***it!!!

Same old, same old, I’m afraid.

Here is an anguished cry for help by a student that feels she got shafted by the system. Let me summarize:

1. Latina (not wise, but special)

2. Grew up middle class Ft. Worth.

3. Went to small private college in Boston.

4. Wracked up >$100,000 in student loans, cosigned by parents.

5. Subsequently, got a law degree at Southern Methodist University.

Now, wants us to support a Democrat (of course) bill to have government “forgive” (i.e., have taxpayers work extra hours to pay for) up-to $45, 520 in student loans. to help pay for her bad judgment to bail her out.

That this is even taken seriously provides incontrovertible evidence that we are doomed as a society. John Galt beckons.

 

A) Government promiseth, B) Government taketh away!

This article that just appeared in Bloomberg.com, regarding Stockton-writ-California-writ-USA-writ-large’s pending bankruptcy, is just so absolutely jaw-dropping crazy…uh, no, wait….it isn’t really so crazy after all. Never mind.

If Stockton Is Broke, Why Isn’t San Diego?: Steven Greenhut

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-03-02/if-stockton-is-broke-then-why-isn-t-san-diego-steven-greenhut.html

Here’s the money take-away: referencing the fact that, for the past 20 years, city employees could earn full lifetime health benefits (employee and spouse) after working only one month, Stockton City Manager Bob Deis noted…

“There was no money set aside to fund those commitments.”

And that’s the rub with our national, state and local governments, isn’t it? They can promise anything to get peoples’ votes, but there is no obligation to deliver. All they can do is make empty promises. And so, like moths to a flame, do we the people incinerate our futures and our freedoms on the soaring promises of hopey-change utopians. We once-proud, free, self reliant Americans have shown ourselves to be all too willing to give up our freedoms in exchange for promised government benefits…i.e., retirement pensions, health care, security, education…with not even a guarantee that the government will or can deliver.

You see, the government can never guarantee such promises, because (as our European cousins have so amply demonstrated) these are promises that government never could deliver. Government can’t deliver because a) government itself cannot create those benefits and b) because, inevitably, in the end, there is never enough money to pay for other people to provide those benefits.

The only thing the government can guarantee is that a) once surrendered, you won’t get your freedom, retirement, health care, security, or money back and b) the only way that it can even pretend to deliver on its promises is by taking away even more of your freedoms and money. Flame – moth – destruction.

 

Molock rising

Long ago, in ancient Phoenicia, arose a religion reviled in Biblical as well as in Greek and Roman lore, that worshiped a deity most commonly known as Molock, Moloch or Moleck. To this deity, parents sacrificed their infant children by cremating them alive in the bronze hands of a bull-shaped statue of the deity (the golden calf all grown up?).

The religion generated revulsion among the Jews, Assyrians, Greeks, Romans and other Mediterranean peoples of that ancient time. In Judaic and Biblical lore, Molock was associated with demonology and Satan’s reign. The Romans purportedly destroyed the last vestiges of this religion in the rubble of Carthage, destroying and scattering every structure down to the last brick, so that it could never ever spring back anew. However, this rationalization for infanticide, just published in the Journal of Medical Ethics, makes me wonder if  Molock isn’t stirring anew in the ebb-tide of the Judeo-Christian West.

http://jme.bmj.com/content/early/2012/02/22/medethics-2011-100411.abstract

In my lifetime, I have been witness to the normalization of promiscuous sex, throw-away children, abortion, partial birth abortion, euthanasia, and now, the open rationalization of infanticide should parents change their mind about a living baby. This is the end game of secular humanism, where there is nothing more transcendent about human beings than simple utilitarian sacks of meat. It was observed by G.K. Chesterton that when cultures (or cults) begin to kill their weakest members, their old and their children, such cultures are in the final stage of collapse.

I came to my Christianity relatively late in life. My faith in my faith is absolute. The existence and/or nature of a force for evil in the world, however, has been a more difficult concept to grasp, as there are so many other ways to rationalize evil behavior – e.g., bad upbringing, mean parents, schoolyard bullying, chemical imbalances, mental illness, hubris, etc. Now, though, I am coming to the conclusion that evil is a palpably real force in the world. Either that, or a violently real, contagious, psychic virus!

Ann Coulter’s most recent book, “Demonic”, relates the proclivity of the secular Left (Democrats) for mob violence and bloodshed, tracing its bloody trail from the French Revolution through the Nazi and Communist abominations of the 20th Century, to the social-justice proclaiming Liberal/Left movements of today (oh, heck, let’s throw in the Marxist Jim Jones Cult for good measure). The violence that our society increasingly wreaks on our weakest members is all part of the same disease and I fear that it is going to get much, much worse.

For me, it’s simple: babies are for loving, not killing — I know, I know…others disagree! The publication of such an article under the guise of “medical ethics” tells me that something truly wicked this way comes. Today, the secular Left may feign indignation at the thought that their revolution will ultimately involve killing those that do not fit their Utopian ideals, but we can see how easily they are getting comfortable with the concept over time. It will be what it will be. I hope that I don’t live to see it. But, as the New Age of Molock establishes itself, I certainly will resist it to the end. I know that you will, too.

 

*** UPDATE

And, now, in support of the Secular Humanist view of human kind as utilitarian pieces of meat, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius shares her policy perspective that abortion and contraception means fewer babies, ergo fewer government expenditures. Human reproduction becomes a simple government-mandated budget line item.

http://cnsnews.com/news/article/sebelius-decrease-human-beings-will-cover-cost-contraception-mandate

One would have to be a total fool not to recognize that this is Government asserting its sovereignty over reproductive rights and life and death decisions.

 

 

Wendell Romney

Does history repeat itself? I fervently hope not.

Ok, I have grudgingly thrown my support behind Mitt Romney. It’s not that I am excited about Romney as a candidate, but I am genuinely excited about the need to get Obama out of office before he does irreversible damage to this country. But, here is where I see a problem:

In one corner, we have a radical Marxist/Progressive, with little to no understanding of human nature and economics, who is on a tear to totally transform society to fit a bankrupt utopian ideology. In the process, he destroys jobs, strips companies of investment capital, destroys human capital, demonizes success, romanticizes failure, takes command of and promptly ruins entire segments of the economy, undermines the Constitution, blatantly disregards the law and does his very best to bankrupt the country while redefining entire segments of the population as dependent wards of the state.

In the other corner, we have a square-jawed, well-coiffed, highly intelligent, erudite and successful businessman who made his mark in an industry demonized and under constant assault by the President. Formerly a Liberal, he now claims to be a Conservative, although large swaths of the Republican party refuse to accept his supposed conversion to conservatism as sincere. He is a nice, rational man who believes in using soft-spoken discourse to sway people and find common ground. Rather than go on a blistering attack in support of the capitalist, free-enterprise economy, he ends up trying to placate the population with his moderation and management credentials, while fending off internal strife within the Republican Party between those that promote strong advocacy of conservative principles and those seeking an accommodationist “middle way”. In many ways, he remains tone deaf to how others perceive him to be and how they react to his awkward choices of words.

This man of whom I speak was Wendell Willkie. He ran against FDR in 1940 and got creamed by 5 million votes. Now, I realize there are many differences between then and now, but take a look at these photos below and please tell me they don’t suggest a spooky echo of the past.

Wendell Willkie

Mitt Romney

Missing: a commanding presence.

There is a quality to real leaders called a “command presence”. You know the type: they walk into a room and by their force of presence, command of the facts, unshaken confidence and leadership qualities, they capture the narrative and control the agenda. That command presence is a necessary mark of a good leader.

In part, this is what I’ve been looking for in these debates and the most recent debate in New Hampshire helped crystallize for me what is wrong with the Republican candidates: I have yet to see a convincing command performance.

I’ve seen it with Govs. Christie and Palin. I’ve seen it in Lt. Col. and Florida Congressional Representative Allen West. I thought that I saw it in Cain, Bachman and Gingrich. I’ve been especially Gingrich’s ability to control the  moronic chickadees of the MSM.

However, I definitely did not see a command presence when Governor Romney allowed an intellectual lightweight like George Stephanopoulos to control the narrative with his ridiculous obsession with contraception (I sense an inner conflict…care to share, Georgie?). Romney wanted to get along, to find the road to peace and harmony…so, instead, Georgie Stephanopoulos got to drive the agenda instead of getting slapped down and named for the trivial man he is.
So, after that, I was pretty much confirmed in my decision to support Gingrich as the one who best offered a vision and command presence for America. That was. This is now. The fact that Gingrich could not condemn the following ad that was posted by one of his PAC tells me that, when necessary, Gingrich will readily descend into the role of the demagogue, much like those on the Left.

You cannot be a proponent of capitalism while playing upon its worst caricatures for short-term political gain. This ad is vile. Romney was part of a turnaround corporation. Such companies play an important role in supporting the vitality and creative destruction and renewal of  capitalist economies. As history has shown over and over again, the alternative is far worse.

After this ad, I can no longer support Gingrich. We’ve already got a demagogue-in-chief. His name is Obama.

So, with great reluctance, I throw my support to Romney. Anybody but Obama!

 

All-American Women!

Yay, there’s another Sarah Palin in American politics.

Mia B. Love – mayor of Saratoga Springs, Utah.

Those of you that have read my posts and comments (whether you agree or disagree) know that I am a huge Sarah Palin fan. Frankly, there is a certain breed of all-American women that I hugely admire in this country – those descended from the same character stock that stood side by side with their men, gun in hand, ready to fight to the death for their families. This is the type of person that Sarah Palin typifies: strong, confident, articulate with a clear sense of…common sense.

Now, in Utah, we see that Sarah Palin is hardly alone. In fact, she may have paved the way for a new, assertive voice of American women in politics. Here is Mia Love…watch the video, imagine Liberal-Lefty heads exploding, then read the link (h/t Powerline Blog)

http://legalinsurrection.com/2012/01/mia-b-love-a-conservative-political-star-rises-in-utah/

 

Let a million Palins bloom! We may yet win this country back.

Besides, I think Allen West could use some help.

Topsy-Turvy Christmas Temps

Bummer! It’s two days before Christmas and there will be no white Christmas in Chicagoland, this year and the temperature will be above freezing. There’s not much snow north of here all the way to the Canadian border, either. Global warmening?

I called a good friend in Cali’s San Joaquin valley, today: turns out that their temperature right now is colder than here in Chicagoland. They are worried about pipes freezing at night.

I look at the weather maps and all the white Christmas weather appears to be south, in Texas and New Mexico. Even further south, the Aussies are suffering a record cold summer http://news.sky.com/home/world-news/article/16133817?f=rss

 

So, what’s going on?

I know. Bush did it!

Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah, everyone! May we all enjoy a happy, prosperous and very normal new year.

 

A Bookworm’s Holiday Buffet

OK, I’ve been mulling (as in mulled wine) Earl’s gingerbread pudding recipe (and thank you for introducing us to Earl’s blog and photo). Hmmm…I need to try this, but probably won’t be able to until between X-mas and New Year.

Those of you that know me, know that I am, for better or worse, at-least half Frenchy (good food), half Viking (bad food). In short, I am food-obsessed.

So, I have an idea. We are all a close knit circle and I am sure that we all wish (as I do) that we could meet for a Holiday feast somewhere, somehow, together. ‘Tis, after all, the season of Hannukah, Christmas, New Year and the Winter Solstice. We have ample reason to celebrate.

So, how about if each one of us offer up one Holiday recipe for this Season? When I make it over the next few weeks or months, I will be able to remember fondly from whence I got it?

How about it?

“Keynes” and other back-pats

Here’s a Robert Samuelson article, “bye bye Keynes” that should give us all pause: the arguments he uses to write Keynes’ obituary are arguments that we all posited in our own excoriation of Keynes in years past, in response to a string of commentators, ranging from A to Z.

I’ve been reviewing our last few years at Bookworm Room and I think that we all deserve a round of huzzas and raised beer mugs or wine glasses, whatever is at hand. We’ve been so right about so many issues, be it “Keynesian”economics; anthropogenic global warming; the Islamist threat; U.S. fossil fuel reserves; “green” energy; Iraq; Obama; the EU’s collapse…and on and on und so weiter.  Sometimes, our prescience has preceded events on the ground by years.

To all of you Bookworm guests and, especially, to Bookworm, our hostess: I’m so d*** proud to know you! I am so much smarter for having enjoyed the many experiences of your insights and commentary.

Dissin’ Liberty

Bruce Bawer, American expat extraordinaire, posted an especially insightful post over this weekend, in which he notes that the peculiarly American assumption that all people want to be free just may be a tad naive.

He cites Jewish writer Tuvia Tenenbom’s (“I Sleep in Hitler’s Room”) observation, upon traversing the former East Germany, that most of the people Tenenbom encountered longed for the “good times” living under the East German dictatorship. In the Middle East, we see peoples offered the light of freedom only to turn further toward the darkness. As Bawer points out, we should know that not all people want to be free: after all, the masses that marched in support of the Nazis and Communists hardly marched for the cause of freedom. Read it all…Bawer makes excellent points in support of his thesis.

We, as a nation, have existed on the premise that all people (like our forefathers) want to be free. This (false?) premise has driven much of American foreign policy. It may also blind us to what is really going on in our own country with regard to the Liberal/Left, the Democrat party and the OWS movement.

I believe that I can understand the pull of serfdom for many people. Just think of all of the difficult life decisions that are taken away from the individual serf: as wards of the state, they don’t have to worry about where they will get their food (of course, they can forget about shopping at Whole Foods as well), whether they will meet their financial needs (albeit at a subsistence level), understanding politics, moral values, education, finding a job…etc. It is, in other words, regression to the mind of a child. They can simply exist for the moment of the day: no responsibilities but, also, no hope. Like vegetables, if you think about it.

So, what do you think? Is what is happening today a defining struggle between those of us that want to be free and those that seek a return to childhood? Is it as simple as this? Because, if it is, then we really are witnessing the final death struggle of the American Republic.

Clarence Cain

Oh, it finally happened!

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1011/67194.html

The Liberal/Left Media has found two or more women willing to claim that Herman Cain was guilty of “sexually suggestive” language, thereby graduating the Liberal/Left’s “step n’ fetchit” caricaturization of Herman Cain to that of the predatory black male. Read that again, “sexually suggestive language”. What is that supposed to mean? Did these women overhear Cain discussing the relative merits of pizza pepperonis?

My first reaction is that, if true, such suggestive language should only endear a candidate to the Democrats. Witness the behaviors of Kennedy(s), LBJ, Clinton, Edwards, Gore, Jesse Jackson and company. Had Cain actually pawed women, the Democrats would claim him to be one of their own.

My second reaction is as follows: either come up with a semen-stained dress or go pound sand, hypocrites!

My third reaction  to ask why it is that people, especially black people, can’t see through the profound racism that courses through Democrat veins?

This is pretty much Clarence Thomas redux. The difference, this time, is that we’ve already seen the playbook.

Slouching into slavery

What the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) protestors don’t realize (yet) is that they have been suckered into becoming the agents of their own enslavement.

Orwell had it so right in defining the Left because he was a man of the Left. The term “Orwellian” now refers to the Left’s use of terms to mean the direct opposite of the intention of an idea or act (“war is peace”, for example). Orwell also noted the need for the State to invent enemies as a means of deflecting attention away from its own actions. It’s all about deflection away from true agendas.

Let me explain. Granted that the OWS movement is defined by many grievances, one underlying theme of  the OWS protests is the onerous debt assumed by students. I have sympathy for this because, as many commentators have already pointed out, these students were sold a bill of goods. The idea was that, whether qualified or motivated or not, kids could simply participate in the university experience, supported with “generous” (i.e., taxpayer-funded) government aid, and exit with a paper degree and guaranteed, high-paying job bereft of drudgery. This is the siren song that led to the inevitable crash upon the rocks of debt slavery.

Universities, those bastions of entitlement, have made out like bandits, taking the students money in exchange for worthless promises and worthless degrees. The government financed this process using “free” taxpayers’ monies and, in the end, developed a class of dependents that will spend the rest of their lives working their way out of indentured servitude at the behest their government masters (the Golden Rule is those that own the gold, rule!). For, as these students are slowly realizing, government debt and dependency is forever…there is no escaping their obligations.

It used to be that students could tap loans from private lending institutions that assumed the risk of a student borrower’s success or failure. If the student went bankrupt, the bank suffered. That is how capitalism and free markets should work. Not so with Liberal government. When the Obama administration took over these lending services, it took away failure as an option. Today, neither students nor their parents can escape their student debt obligations and the total student debt outstanding has been estimated to approach $1.0 trillion.

Many of these OWS students are now answerable to their government masters for the foreseeable future and during their most formative years… a period when they should be free to work toward satisfying careers, saving to purchase their own homes, preparing to raise families and, eventually, achieving financial independence. Instead, as long as the government holds their debt, it can now dictate how these students will lead their lives in service to their government’s regime goals (as in, “we will forgive x-amount of your debt if you “agree” to work in only certain prescribed professions or government-approved public works programs under certain given conditions dictated by us, your master) Or, let’s try the Chicago Way: “as long as we hold your debt, you will only believe certain things, work for certain causes, and vote in certain ways” . Their indentured servitude has taken away their freedom to think, to act and to build their own futures. Even more sadly, for many of these students, their expensive college educations amounted to little more than indoctrination whereby to accept these circumstances as a good thing: witness the large number whose goal in life is simply to work for “non-profits”.

The especially egregious aspect of this is that it is poorer students that have so been hooked into government dependency. But then, that has pretty much been par for the course for Liberal government, hasn’t it? Government did this before, with poor blacks and the War on Poverty. Government programs enslave the poor through indentured dependency.  Rich or talented kids don’t have to worry about this: they have parents, scholarships or trust funds to ensure that they never become indentured government debt pawns. The especially pathetic part of these events is that these indebted students and graduates have been led to believe, through Orwellian deflection, that the agents of their servitude are banks, conservatism, political and economic liberty, and capitalism – the very agents that could yet free them – rather than the government and academia that shackled them.

I suspect that, deep down in their hearts, many of the OWS protestors are slowly coming to realize their predicament. They’ve been had. Eventually, I expect, they will come to learn the truth about their servitude. I hope that they will still have the strength to resist.

I think that it is safe to say that slavery, not democracy, has been a defining condition for the great majority of human history. This may not be a point stressed in the Orwellian halls of academia that groomed this new government slave class at these students’ own expense, but it is a historical truism, none the less. It would truly be sad if what we are observing at the various OWS rallies around the country and world is simply an age-old historical evil reasserting itself in modern drag. What we are now seeing as the product of the college experience is the emergence of two classes: a wealthy, highly educated ruling class and a subservient, dependent, servant class that got suckered into paying the Liberal/Left ruling class to deprive it of intellectual and economic choices under the Orwellian guise of “freedom”. The Liberal/Left has done a bang-up job of severely crippling a generation of our children. I would be hard-pressed to conceive of  a more gross corruption of the American ideal.

I hope that I am wrong. What do you think?

 

Birds of a feather flocking together

As Orks from around the world gather at Mordor, I’m trying to keep track of all the endorsements that the OWS protestors have gathered unto themselves.

Let’s see, there is: the Obama administration; Al Gore; the U.S. Communist party; the U.S. Nazi /White Supremacist parties; the KKK, CAIR; Iran’s Ahmadinejad; Anarchists; the Jacksons (Jesse and Junior); government workers unions; Al Sharpton; Louis Farrakhan; George Soros; the Hollywood Left; rapists; thieves; polluters….

Who did I leave out?

Ann Coulter really was really onto something with her demonology references in describing Democrats’ proclivities toward mob rule and this OWS parade of perversions.

 

Uneasy about Libya?

First, let me say that I am absolutely delighted that Qaddafi is no longer with us. Good riddance! For me it’s personal, as I had many Libyan college mates that were refugees from and victims of the early days of his dictatorship. I wish them well in building a bright future for their country.

Still, I feel somewhat uneasy about how this played out. For decades (centuries?), countries have operated under a written or unwritten rule that you don’t assassinate other heads of state in a “we don’t do it to them so that they don’t do it to us” understanding. Kings don’t kill kings. Technically, it is illegal for the U.S. to assassinate political leaders with whom we are not in a state of war, if I recall my history properly. If I am wrong on this point, please correct me (DQ? Book? You’re both attorneys…help me out).

Now, this does not apply to illegal terrorist groups, such as al-Qaeda, of course. In Libya, however, Qaddafi was the leader of a government with whom we had diplomatic relations and upon which war had not been declared. In the case of Saddam Hussein, he was arrested by the U.S. army in a theater of war, approved by Congress and operating under a United Nations mandate. He was put on trial by a legitimate Iraqi government. The case of Diem in South Vietnam was also highly problematic.

Now, technically, we didn’t kill Qaddafi…he was killed by a Libyan citizen. However, the argument could be made that we (i.e., NATO) set up the killing, especially if his convoy was hit by a U.S. drone or British warplane. We may not be dealing so much with the letter of the law as with the intent of the law.

Again, I don’t mourn Qaddafi. However, my unease about what transpires stems from the fact that the official and unofficial international rules on war, political killing and assassination appear to have undergone a major phase change.

Am I right or wrong to be concerned on this issue? Please let me know.