The Bookworm Beat 1/21/15 — “Post-SOTU” edition and Open Thread

Woman writingI didn’t watch the SOTU. Aside from finding Obama a boring, inelegant speaker, I was helping a client with trial prep. Today, the trial got continued for a few months so, before settling in for a nice 12 hour sleep (I wish!), I can blog — and share with you, among other things, a couple of my favorite SOTU analyses. I’ve got a lot to say, so I’ll just start saying….

My two favorite SOTU wrap-ups

As I admitted above, I did not watch the SOTU, so I can’t actually say if these wrap-ups are accurate. I can just say that I liked them.

From Neo-Neocon:

But Obama long ago concluded that the best defense is a good offense. He has never had to face the consequences of his failures. He has been able to fool most of the people most of the time, at least when it counted. He has skated past disaster after disaster, and gotten away with lie after lie. The biggest repercussion he’s been met with—the 2014 Democratic defeat in Congress—may not stop him. Republicans are somewhat toothless, in part because they are divided among themselves but also because Obama has veto power that will be difficult to override. He’s also got that phone and that pen, and the will to use them. He has successfully transformed the US into a second-rate power and allies into enemies (or at least, into abandoned and confused ex-allies). And he has turned enemies into, if not allies, then gloating and stronger forces in the world for whatever evil they’ve got in mind.

It’s actually worked out very well for Obama. So why not brag?

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The Bookworm Beat 1/19/15 — abbreviated version and Open Thread

Woman writingAt a lawyer level, this has been a somewhat frustrating day, with me struggling to fit my facts (always true and honest ones) to the law (which sometimes refuses to cooperate), capped by a power outage that lost me an hour of time. Add to that the usual cries for attention from family, and I’m feeling a little . . . ummm, stressed. Still, I have stuff I want to share with you, so let me whip through it:

Chilling look into the near future at what the next school attack might look like

Mike McDaniel, who blogs at Stately McDaniel Manor, has looked at past school shootings, both at home and abroad, and come up with a possible scenario for the next assault on an American school. I don’t doubt that he’s accurately predicting a possible American future unless we take steps now to head it off.

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The Bookworm Beat 1/17/15 — Supplemental edition and Open Thread

Woman writingSince I wrote the preceding Bookworm Beat, two things showed up on my computer that I wanted to address.

You’re not brave if there’s no risk

In 2006, as part of Project 2,996, I wrote about New York Fire Fighter Brian Ahearn. I spent a lot of time on the internet looking for the ghosts and traces of Lt. Ahearn, and ended up feeling as if I really knew the man who, despite a lovely and fulfilling life, bravely raced into a burning high rise hoping to rescue people from the destruction. Lt. Ahearn was never seen again. In my post about him, I thought a lot about his raw courage and it was this idea — this courage — that opened my post:

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The Bookworm Beat 1/17/15 — Deep thoughts about our world edition and Open Thread

Woman writingIn no particular order, a whole lot of extremely interesting things about Islam, Leftist hypocrisy, John Kerry’s epic appearance in France, and other things that caught my eye.

Pitch-perfect satire exposes Leftist hypocrisy

Okay, I’ll admit that you don’t need pitch-perfect satire to expose Leftist hypocrisy, because the latter is an easy target. Having said that, there’s something about high-quality satire that makes the exposure very powerful. Such is the case with this DuffelBlog piece about the extreme frustration currently afflicting Boko Haram:

BORNO, Nigeria — According to insider reports obtained by Duffel Blog, leaders for the terrorist group Boko Haram have called an emergency meeting to determine how many more murders, rapes and kidnappings it will take before anyone in the international community will start giving a shit.

“It’s frustrating,” complained Boko Haram Commander Abubakar Shekau. “We work extremely hard, and all we get from the rest of the world is phlegmatic indifference. I mean, what’s a warlord supposed to do?”

During a month in which the group has attacked hard targets in Cameroon, as well as orchestrated the slaughter of up to 2,000 civilians, international media outlets have largely focused on recent terror attacks in Paris. The carnage wrought by Boko Haram in the Belgium-sized swath of territory it now controls in the northeastern states of oil-rich Nigeria was designed to get attention.

Much to Shekau’s dismay, however, it hasn’t been enough.

“I’m turning this country into a fucking Lars Von Trier film,” Shekau told Duffel Blog via Facebook chat. “I’ve literally stolen hundreds of kids from their parents and sold them into slavery, and all I got was a Twitter hashtag from Michelle Obama.”

That is top quality satire.  I’d like to wrap this segment up with an email discussion I had with the friend who first put me on to that excellent DuffleBlog piece:

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The Bookworm Beat 1/15/15 — The ides of January edition and Open Thread

Woman writingSomewhat unusually for me, I didn’t come across that many articles today that excited in me the desire to share them with you. Nevertheless, what I have is good.

And on your Left, you can see the famous “Rats Leaving A Sinking Ship”

An old high school friend of mine, once a centrist, now a Leftist (although always civil and respectful) is really miffed at the way everyone is making such a big deal out of Obama’s non-appearance at the Paris march. I have a few thoughts about the march, ending with the fact that I agree with my friend that, at least as to Obama, it’s not such a big deal, although it’s certainly interesting.

First, of course, any “peace” march that has Abbas and Erdogan has nothing to do with peace. It’s a sham, meant to pacify the masses. If Obama were a principled man, one might think he avoided the march for that reason — although if he were a principled man, he would have added a little speech about freedom of speech and the necessity of actively defending our culture against the barbarian. But he isn’t so he didn’t.

Second, I’ve enjoyed all the theories about Obama’s non-appearance. In no particular order, the ones I’ve read are anti-free speech, pro-Islam, arrogance (not going to be one of the crowd), checking out of politics, checking in to football playoffs, security concerns (although the Secret Service quickly put the lie to that one), and a tin ear that saw him fail to realize this would be a big deal.

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The Bookworm Beat 1/14/15 — The interesting odds and ends edition

Woman writingI’m not sure I can discern any common threads in this edition of the Bookworm Beat, other than the fact that each link is to something interesting.

History will eviscerate Obama

New York Magazine had an encomium to the wonders of the Obama presidency. It then invited Christopher Caldwell to do a rebuttal — and rebut he did:

These [healthcare reform and gay marriage] are, however, typical Obama achievements. They are triumphs of tactics, not consensus-building. Obamacare involved quid pro quos (the “Cornhusker Kickback,” the “Louisiana Purchase,” etc.) that passed into Capitol Hill lore, accounting and parliamentary tricks to render the bill unfilibusterable, and a pure party-line vote in the Senate. You can call it normal politics, but Medicare did not pass that way. Gay marriage has meant Cultural Revolution–style bullying of dissenters (notoriously, Phil Robertson of Duck Dynasty and the Mozilla founder Brendan Eich). You can call this normal politics, too, but the 1964 Civil Rights Act did not pass that way.

Read the rest here.

Will the real Barack Obama please stand up?

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The Bookworm Beat 1/12/15 — The must-see illustrated edition, and Open Thread

I don’t think I’m exaggerating when I say this is one of the best illustrated editions I’ve ever published (with many thanks to Caped Crusader and Earl). The last year has been clarifying, and that shows up in the incredibly forceful, pithy posters that thinking people are creating. There are a lot here but, if you don’t want to look at all of them, just look at the first few, which are my favorites.

Beirut was Paris of Middle East now Paris is the Beirut of Europe

Netanyahu pointing out that Israel and Europe have a common enemy

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The Bookworm Beat 1/11/14 — The illustrated edition, and Open Thread *UPDATED*

A mish-mash of things from the wonderful Caped Crusader, from Earl, and from my own Facebook feed.  The first one explains a lot about the bond between Leftists and Islamists, despite the fact that the former ought to hate the latter because of little things like religion, sexual constraints, etc., while the latter definitely hate the former because of little things like lack of religion, sexual freedom, etc.

Radical Islamists and Leftists have identical beliefs

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