The Bookworm Beat 7-25-15 — the Lazy, but interesting, edition

Woman-writing-300x265As you may have gathered from the number of things we did every day on our recent trip to Virginia and environs, ours was not a restful vacation. I capped off the fatigue with a cold and, since our return, have been having a very hard time motivating myself to do anything. My theme song for the week has been Irving Berlin’s Lazy, although I’d have to add fatigue and inertia to the laziness mix:

Still, despite my laziness, I have managed to peel myself off the couch and find my way to the computer occasionally, so I do have some posts to share with you:

Made You Laugh

Before I get to the depressing stuff — and, lately, all the news seems to be depressing — I wanted to tell you about a weekly column my long-time friend Gary Buslik is starting at The Blot. I first introduced you to Gary a few years ago when I reviewed his outrageously funny book Akhmed and the Atomic Matzo Balls: A Novel of International Intrigue, Pork-Crazed Termites, and Motherhood. I’ve since read, though shamefully neglected to review, his delightful travelogue, A Rotten Person Travels the Caribbean: A Grump in Paradise Discovers that Anyplace it’s Legal to Carry a Machete is Comedy Just Waiting to Happen. In both books, and in the various travel articles of his published in anthologies, Gary’s voice is true: erudite, wry, mordant, snarky, self-deprecating, Jewish, and very, very funny.

Since Gary just launched his weekly column, there’s only one week’s worth of writing, but I think you might enjoy it: The Great Jewish Dilemma.

Yes, Martin O’Malley’s link between ISIS and climate change is crazy

Democrat presidential hopeful Martin O’Malley came in for a good deal of derision for saying that ISIS’s rise can be tied to climate change. The obvious reason this is a laughable point is because the most direct tie to ISIS’s rise is, of course, Obama’s retreat, which created a giant ISIS-sized vacuum. My friend Wolf Howling sent me an email which I think nicely summarizes the Obama/ISIS link:

A fascinating article in the NY Review of Books states that it is the Iraqi organization originally founded by Zarqawi, the utterly sadistic terrorist we sent off the mortal coil in 2006. The movement obviously survived him, and this really throws into stark relief the wages of Obama and the Left cutting and running from Iraq in 2010. ISIS is like a bacteria that survives a stunted course of antibiotics. Had we stayed in Iraq, there is no possible way that ISIS could have had a rebirth.

The author of the article tries to make sense of the rise of ISIS. You can read his ruminations. My own theory is two-fold: One, ISIS is preaching the true Salafi / Wahhabi purist doctrine that makes of the world a thing of black and white, where all things that support Allah are pure, while everything that does not is evil and can be dealt with without regards. Thus it is a draw to young Arab men. If you want to see how, here is a fascinating article by Tawfiq Hamid, a doctor who became a terrorist, who discusses the lure of Salafism / Wahhabism and all its deadly toxins.

Two, the ISIS ideology is a draw because it is utterly without bounds in its sadism or cruelty. This also is a draw to a particular segment of Arab men. It is the Lord of the Flies. It is going into a scenario where you will have the power of life, death, and pain with virtually no restrictions.

The fact is that ISIS should not be around today. My word, but Obama has so totally f**ked us in the Middle East . . . . He makes Carter look like Nixon by comparison.

I only wish I’d written that, but at least I can share it with you. So yes, O’Malley is an ignorant moron.

Still, never let it be said that the Left doesn’t protect its own, so The Atlantic has tried to throw a life saver to O’Malley: Martin O’Malley’s Link Between Climate Change and ISIS Isn’t Crazy. The article’s premise is that there’s a connection between drought and unrest. To which I say, “Well, duh!”

Any student of history knows that in primitive societies (and Muslim Middle Eastern countries are extremely primitive when it comes to food production, due to natural limitations, societal factors, and the transfer of food crops to biofuels) anything that interferes even marginally with food production has devastating effects, with war one of the most common ones.

However, as my reference to “students of history” makes clear, droughts have always happened. O’Malley wouldn’t have been a moron if he’d said “the drought they’re experiencing in the region no doubt was a contributing factor to unrest in the Syria – Iraqi region.” But instead, he had to throw in “climate change” — and what makes that so laughable is that we’ve come to the point  which climate change is responsible for everything. I’m awaiting the day when we get an article saying that Caitlyn Jenner’s unfortunate transgender habit of dressing like a male chauvinists’ dream 1950s pin-up girl is also due to climate change.

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The Bookworm Beat 6-24-15 — the “midnight ramblings” edition

Woman-writing-300x265I should be heading for bed, as it’s after midnight, but I’m so thrilled to have a moment to myself that I can’t resist a little blogging. I’m feeling especially smug (and tired) tonight because my heroic 1:30 a.m. efforts yesterday were the difference between success and ignominious failure on a big motion. Damn it all! I deserve some time to write.

Anything you can be I can be better….

My favorite military humorist, Lee Ho Fuk has taken the Rachel Dolezal mantra — “anything you can be I can be better” — to a whole new level:

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My take on Carly Fiorina back in 2010, when she ran unsuccessfully for U.S. Senator

Carly FiorinaWith Carly Fiorina earning an increasing number of accolades for her campaign against Hillary Clinton, I thought I should republish my take on her from a 2010 talk she gave in Marin County when she made her unsuccessful run to get Barbara Boxer’s seat:

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Fiorina, who showed up right on time, which is always a nice sign of respect to ones audience, is shorter than I had thought she would be.  She’s such a trim, upright, tidy figure that I somehow had the impression that she’s a very tall woman.  She’s not; she just has a tall presence.

Carly is a wonderful speaker:  she has clear, warm voice, and speaks without any annoying verbal ticks.  No “ums” and “uhs” from this lady.  I guess you could call her the un-Obama.  (She didn’t need a teleprompter either.)  She also has a nice energy.  Even though it was obvious that this was her usual speech, it didn’t have a canned feel.  Instead, it had a fresh vitality that made those of us sitting there feel as if she was conversing with us, rather than going through the usual political “blah blah.”

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The Bookworm Beat 5-18-15 — “clearing out my inbox” edition and Open Thread

Woman writingNo, you’re not imagining it. Yes, I have been AWOL. The legal work has finally tapered off, but other things have filled the vacuum, taking up both my time and energy. Some of them are very nice things but, much as I love you all, I can’t share them here. And of course, some are just the ordinary stuff that makes up the life of someone who is both a mother and a daughter. During the time I’ve been AWOL, I’ve received quite a lot of very interesting links. Starting with this post, and continuing into others, I’d like to share them with you.

What Republican candidates should say on Iraq

Reporters are playing Iraq gotcha with the Republican candidates, although they’ve assiduously avoided asking Hillary any questions about the war even though she voted for the War. John Hinderaker has the perfect answer that Republican candidates should give when asked about the War:

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The Bookworm Beat 4-26-15 — the “writer’s block” edition and open thread

Woman writingI know this is going to surprise those of you used to my usual output of posts, but I’m suffering from writer’s block. The last few weeks have been so chaotic, my opportunities to write so random and infrequent, and the news of the world so overwhelming that, now that I finally have time to sit down and write, I’m frozen. After sitting her for a while, I decided that the best thing to do would be to clear my spindle. I know some of the contents are outdated, but they may still be of interest, and getting through the backlog may help spark my dormant (I hope, rather than extinct) yen to write.

Obama fiddles with Iran while the Middle East burns and Israel is forced to go it alone

All eyes may be on Obama and his desperation to get a deal with Iran (despite the fact that, in a sane world, the smaller, weaker, poorer Iran would be desperate to get a deal with Obama), but the fact is that the entire Middle East is a flaming disaster thanks to Obama’s habit of alternately meddling in and abandoning Middle Eastern affairs.

Bret Stephens explains that, thanks to Obama’s policies, it is now impossible for Israel to walk back the way in which he’s abandoned and isolated it:

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The Bookworm Beat 4-10-15 — the mother of all round-ups

Woman writingThis is it — the ultimate round-up, consisting of more than 20 links that I’ve collected over the past couple of days and wanted to share with you. Nothing works better at squeezing a nice long blog post than a series of legal pleadings I really don’t want to write. By the way, these squiblets aren’t in any particular order, so you never know what gems you might not find as you scroll down.

The weakening of the Leftist mind

In an earlier post, I wrote about the fact that our younger generation has turned into a passive, sheeple generation, meekly towing the Leftist party line. Astute readers pointed out that, aside from the 1960s children, who were spoon-fed their rebellion by communist spies, past Americans generations also weren’t given to a rebellion. That’s true — but at least past generations were taught analytical and reasoning skills. If they desired, they could analyze and challenge their era’s zeitgeist. Our current generation can’t.

And how do I know I’m correct in reaching that conclusion? Because my reasoning coincidences with Daniel Greenfield’s. In a post about the closing of the liberal mind, Greenfield explains how so-called “liberals” have reduced themselves to this state:

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Ted Cruz for President in 2016

Ted CruzA temporary diminution in my overwhelming work load has finally given me a window to blow about Ted Cruz’s candidacy. Briefly, I’m for it. Obama has taught us that, in today’s world, it’s not experience that matters, it is indeed being a standard-bearer for an overarching ideology.

Americans have now had six, going on for seven, years of Obama’s ideology and they’ve seen the results:

  1. a sluggish economy,
  2. endless crony capitalism,
  3. meaningless national borders,
  4. a disastrous change for the worse in race relations,
  5. the Middle East going down in flames,
  6. Israel (America’s long-time ally) abandoned and betrayed,
  7. a White House that makes love to the nation that’s slaughtered thousands of American troops,
  8. the abandonment of Eastern Europe to Putin’s depredations,
  9. a spectacular rise in Islamic violence at home and abroad,
  10. the steady transformation of our healthcare system into a European style system that provides access but minimal meaningful care,
  11. a de-fanged and emasculated military,
  12. the end of government transparency,
  13. the rise of an unaccountable administrative branch that practices legislation, and
  14. worst of all, a deliberate turn away from our most cherished constitutional principles, including the all-important separate of powers, our primary bulwark against tyranny.

In this, Obama has consistently been aided and abetted by the Democrat Party.  Worse, whenever it’s been faltering, its received helpful boosts from the GOP.

Against this backdrop, running a neutered GOP candidate who, at home, stands, for everything Obama stands for, only with weaker sauce, and, abroad, lacks the backbone to fight against Islamic (and, inevitably, Chinese) aggression abroad, is a sure way to lose.

Finally, though we have an alternative, in the person of a man who liberal law professor Alan Dershowitz describes as one of the most brilliant Harvard law students he’s ever had.  Briefly, Ted Cruz

  1. has the ability to articulate conservative principles in clear and accessible language,
  2. has a happy warrior manner as he toys with a media that’s unaccustomed to a conservative who won’t bow down,
  3. enjoys a good fight,
  4. energizes (one hopes) Hispanic conservatives who have been languishing, literally and figuratively, in Democrat ghettos, and
  5. most importantly of all, holds pro-American views on every issue: he supports a free market, strong borders, standing against Islamic extremism and aggression, protecting our allies around the world, bringing the free market to America’s healthcare system, shrinking government and (especially) the administrative branch of government, de-fanging the IRS’s unlimited (and partisan) power, and in all other respects running a government consistent with the Constitution.

To those who say “Cruz can’t win,” I say “That’s only true if you start with a defeatist attitude by buying into MSM and GOP slander.”

Now is the time for the pendulum to swing far, far away from Obama. If the Republican pendulum apathetically droops in front of a Jeb Bush or Lindsay Graham, we will lose. This is the last chance, truly the last chance, for the American Constitution to take center stage in an election and in our lives. If Hillary or Jeb wins, America as a Constitutional nation is dead and gone.

Incidentally, Wolf Howling has pulled together a very useful collection of Ted Cruz articles.

In honor of Ted Cruz’s announcement — a re-run of my post about his epic stand against Obamacare

Ted CruzIn 2013, Ted Cruz was the only one who wholeheartedly, bravely, boldly, took a stand against Obamacare.  The GOP was appalled.  I, of course, am appalled by the GOP — quislings, all of them.

Today, Ted Cruz announced that he’s running for President:

In honor of Cruz’s announcement, I’m rerunning the post I did in the run-up to Cruz’s promised filibuster of Obamacare, back on September 25, 2013: “Is Ted Cruz’s promised Obamacare filibuster the equivalent of King Leonidas’s stand at Thermopylae?

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"I will do everything necessary and anything possible to defund Obamacare."

“I will do everything necessary and anything possible to de-fund Obamacare.”

Most people, whether Democrat or Republican, agree that Ted Cruz’s planned filibuster in the Senate is doomed. It will do nothing to stop Obamacare’s inexorable path towards implementation. (To understand precisely what the filibuster is about, Ace has a good, short explanation.)

Because Ted Cruz is nobody’s fool, I’m guessing that he too knows that it won’t stop Obamacare from getting fully implemented within the next few months. Why, then, is Cruz engaged in this quixotic effort? I think I have the answer, but you’ll have to bear with me, because it involves taking a little trip back, back in time . . . to the Battle of Thermopylae.

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