The New York Times, despite its Jewish progenitors, was always too Progressive to be pro-Jewish or pro-Israel. The New York Times was written by and for Jews who like to throw around a few Yiddish words (“nosh,” “meshugganah,” etc.), and who may even go to synagogue once a year, but who think religion is a primitive, backwards approach to the world. They are clean and bright and shiny, and Jews — real Jews — are dirty, backwards and, in Israel, imperialist occupying forces. That’s why you should never believe a word that the New York Times says about Israel, unless it’s a surprisingly positive word, in which case you’ll know that an enterprising philosemite snuck into the newsroom at night and messed with the computers.
Since 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:
The New York Times ran an article the other day noting that there’s been a big change in Sweden, in that increasing numbers of ordinary Swedes are turning against the countries famously relaxed immigration policy. I’ll let the Times explain:
Opposition to the rising numbers is growing. The far-right, anti-immigrant Sweden Democrats had their best showing ever — nearly 13 percent of votes — in elections in September.
The entry of the Sweden Democrats to parliament in 2010 had already opened the door for a previously unthinkable discussion about turning back the country’s policy of taking in foreigners on humanitarian grounds and granting them access to the country’s generous welfare system.
In an ordinary world, anybody reading the above paragraph would, of course, wonder why the famously welcoming Swedes are suddenly becoming hostile to immigration. I’m sorry, but not surprised, to say that the New York Times is not writing for an ordinary world. It’s writing for its Progressive readers who don’t want to hear bad things about immigrants, especially politically correct Muslim immigrants.
That’s presumably why virtually the entire article focuses on the immigrants’ suffering, with only some vague allusions to the problems their presence creates:
As Khalif Samantar knelt for afternoon prayers at the Eskilstuna Islamic Dawa Center on Christmas Day, he sensed a growing heat and a low, rushing sound coming from a nearby hallway. He focused his mind on the ritual, only to realize seconds later that someone was shouting, “The mosque is on fire!”
“We left our country as refugees. We were not looking for food or benefits, we were looking for somewhere to feel safe,” said Abdirahman Farah Warsame, the imam at the mosque where the fire occurred on Christmas Day. He is originally from Somalia. “Now that is gone. We have a feeling that society is turning against us.”
After having made clear where its sympathies lie (with the poor, peaceful, dispossessed Muslim immigrants), the article points out how nasty Europe is becoming, whining about money problems and inchoate fears:
Indeed, the relentless stream of migrants to Europe — propelled by the war in Syria and turmoil across the Middle East and the Horn of Africa — has combined with economic troubles and rising fear of Islamic radicalism to fuel a backlash against immigrants, directed most viciously at Muslims.
After having read the above paragraph, I, unlike the average Times reader, started wondering “When will the Times start explaining the reasons behind — or, at least, the reasons people give for — “a backlash against immigrants, directed most viciously at Muslims.” Let me save you the problem of reading the article: The Times doesn’t explain the reasons.
Instead, as you can confirm yourself, there are “debates,” “resentments” and “suspicions” about Muslim immigration, although the Times reader never discovers the contents of those debates, or the reasons behind resentments and suspicions. Instead, we learn that
- Swedes gathered to show solidarity with Muslims;
- Sweden was third only to Germany and France in the number of asylum seekers in 2012;
- Sweden is getting a boatload of Syrians;
- Swedes have always kept their immigrants out of the mainstream “but that the success of the Sweden Democrats has made racism more socially acceptable;”
- Sweden’s parliament entered into there was some sort of “last-minute deal” that saved the government from the racist Swedish Democrat attack [more on that later];
- the Islamic Association of Sweden (their CAIR) is unhappy about rising protests, including women having their hijabs snatched off; that
- mosques are getting vandalized; and
- Muslim immigrants are family oriented people who just want peace and are having a hard time sleeping.
Indeed, the only inkling one gets about what might be disturbing the Swedes’ tranquility is this single paragraph:
The party’s growth has occurred despite the fact that roughly a fifth of Sweden’s 9.6 million people were born abroad or to immigrant parents in Sweden. Most immigrants here have access to education, but government figures show a disproportionate unemployment rate for them, more than twice the national rate of about 8 percent. The disparity helped fuel riots in immigrant neighborhoods outside Stockholm in 2013.
Let me say right away that I’m not condoning mosque burnings or hijab snatching. I’m a big supporter of the rule of law, but here’s the little secret the Times tries so hard to hide: The rule of law is precisely what 13% of Sweden’s citizens stood for when they used the ballot box to elect representatives who would slow (not halt, but slow) the seemingly endless influx of Islamic immigrants and the rate of handouts given to those immigrants.
Of course, the traditional powers that be in Europe — the hard right and hard left — can’t have a moderate middle that’s hostile to a third world takeover. Thus, when the Swedish Democrats flexed their muscles in parliament by refusing to approve a budget unless their concerns about slowing immigration and welfare were met, thereby forcing a snap election that would undoubtedly have worked to the Swedish Democrats’ favor, the hard left and hard right entered into a sleazy backroom deal to vote on budgets through 2018 so as to shut the Swedish Democrats (and the voters) out of government. (I’ll explain in a few paragraphs why, even though I’m disgusted by this anti-democratic behavior, I can’t weep too many tears for the Swedish Democrat party.)
And now back to the original point, which is to wonder what the New York Times wasn’t saying when it wrote about Swedes’ growing animosity to Muslim immigrants. The secret lies in the Times’ throwaway line about immigrant resentment leading to “riots” outside Stockholm. Muslims are rioting? Who would have guessed that!
So, here’s a little information about those Swedish immigrants that the New York Times didn’t think was part of “all the news that’s fit to print”:
1. Already back in the early years of this century, Fjordman was writing about the fact that the rape rate is skyrocketing in Sweden. When I mention this to Progressives, they immediately say that it’s because Sweden (pretty much like every American college campus) defines rape so broadly that just looking cross-eyed at a woman is rape. These same Progressives have nothing to say, though, when I point out that “In Sweden only around 3-4% of all rapes are committed by natives who make up 85% of the entire population. The rest are by immigrants – Muslim immigrants.” Even Progressives aren’t foolish enough to pretend that the same Muslims who brutally rape women all over the world suddenly, when they get to Sweden, stop their violent physical rapes and just start looking at women cross-eyed.
2. Even when they’re not rioting, Muslim neighborhoods have become so dangerous that they are now “no-go” zones for Swedens’ police and firefighters. There are now 55 Muslim enclaves in which criminals rule supreme. You only need to look at Malmo, which is about 25% Muslim and incredibly violent, to see the future of things to come.
3. Significant numbers of Swedens’ mosques aren’t the sunny ecumenical spots described in the New York Times article. They are, instead, hotbeds of radicalized Islam, of the type that doesn’t just provide moral support for ISIS, but that actually goes off and fights for it.
In other words, those Swedes casting their lot in with the Swedish Democrats aren’t just being petty people moved only by their pocket books — although it would be reasonable for them to start resenting the vast demands the immigrants make on the system. After all, the only reason socialism worked in Sweden in the first place was that it was such a small, politically and culturally homogeneous county that everyone cheerily contributed to the classic Marxist plan of “from each according to his ability; to each according to his needs.” The Muslims, however, don’t buy into that cooperative socialism, which is driving the system closer to collapse.
Nope, what’s bugging those cheerful, law-abiding Swedes is that they’ve nurtured a violent viper at their breasts, a viper that rapes their women, makes their shiny, clean cities dirty, destroys their communities, and emasculates law enforcement. No wonder 13% of them suddenly signed on to the Swedish Democrats.
Still, as I noted above, I’m not weeping too many tears for the Swedish Democrats, despite the fact that a dirty backroom deal locked them out of the political process. Even as the Muslims, who make up about 5% of the population, commit depredations against the Swedes, the Swedish Democrats are turning against the Jews, who make up only .2% of the population and have no history of violence or disruption whatsoever. It’s things like this, incidentally, that make me completely understand my friend’s belief that the Europeans are Amalekites and deserve no pity as their continent swirls down the drain of history.
And just a couple of wrap ups:
- My 2013 impression of Stockholm, based upon the admittedly very small experience of having spent just a few hours there; and
- Two Pat Condell videos:
The headline to the New York Times article says it all: “Much of David Duke’s ’91 Campaign Is Now in Louisiana Mainstream.” Would you be surprised if I told you that this is nothing more than a dishonest hit piece?
The article has a simple premise. Readers know what a vile racist David Duke is. Because mostly-Republican Louisiana has embraced Duke’s 1991 platform from his gubernatorial campaign, therefore Louisiana is a vile racist state. The jumping off point for the article is the story that Representative Steve Scalise spoke to a meeting that one of Duke’s close aides held in 1992. That story has been seriously questioned, although you wouldn’t know it from the Times, which has not issued a correction or update.
There are only two flaws with the article. The first is that the fact that even evil politicians have ideas that non-evil people can embrace. For example, without stooping to malign American Progressives by calling them “Nazis,” look at how many economic ideas from the Nazi party American Progressives embrace:
Nazi economic policy was largely based on fascist economic theories. In fascism, resources and production are managed for the greater benefit of the state, rather than to increase profit, wages or standards of living. Fascist governments control production and manufacturing, dictating what is produced and for what purposes. There is also considerable government control over the allocation of resources, such as land and raw materials. Unlike socialism, fascism is not opposed to private ownership of capital, provided that business owners are co-operative and do not resist state control. In fascist economic systems, such as Mussolini’s Italy, economics is considered a partnership between the state and private-owned corporations.
One could go on, comparing such things as socialized medicine (Nazis and Progressives like it), as well as the obsession with state control over individual choices so as to grind out vice. (For more comparing the “nanny” side, rather than the killer side, of Nazism to modern American Progessivism you can’t do better than to read Jonah Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left, From Mussolini to the Politics of Change)
Even though American Progressives and Hitler’s Nazis share many of the same political ideas, there’s a reason we don’t insult Progressives by calling them “Nazis”: The “Nazi” label is a serious insult, not because of its socialist politics, but because of the Nazi obsession with bloody war and racial genocide and enslavement. Last I looked, American Progressives were big on the garden-variety socialism that the Nazis liked too, but they hadn’t started begging for blitzkriegs and death camps. I may not like the politics that American Progressives espouse, but they’re not Nazis. (Interestingly, though, they do have the same race obsessions as the Nazis and, scarily, they’re making headway on the antisemitism. One wonders if those vices are hard-wired into socialism, whether one initially wants them there or not.)
The key takeaway is that, even if you share some political, social, and economic beliefs with a bad actor, that doesn’t make you a bad actor — provided that you don’t share the ugly stuff. When it comes to tarring Republicans, the New York Times ignores that distinction.
The second flaw is that, if you actually read beyond the lede, the article provides no evidence whatsoever that Louisiana embraced the uglier parts of Duke’s 1991 platform. Instead, the article offers a single apples to oranges comparison, and then pretends that they’re both the same fruit. A mild fisking is now in order:
Mr. Duke supported forcing welfare recipients to take birth control. Now there are near-perennial attempts by members of the Louisiana Legislature to give welfare recipients drug tests.
Do you see any correlation whatsoever between forcing welfare recipients to take birth control (which could be construed as a eugenics thing because a disproportionate number of blacks are on welfare), versus mandating drug tests to ensure that Louisiana voters aren’t subsidizing voluntary behavior that leads to an inability to work? I don’t. Incidentally, back in 1991 welfare was structured to give female welfare recipients a cash incentive to have children out-of-wedlock, Duke wasn’t the only one back in the day seeking ways to disincentivize welfare recipients from having out-of-wedlock children. Indeed, in 1991 there were a lot of problems with welfare, so many that, in 1994, driven by the voter wave that placed Republicans in control of Congress, Bill Clinton signed a bill ending “Welfare as We Know It.” The bill’s purpose was to do away with welfare’s perverse incentives, including the bonuses for babies part of welfare.
And that’s my fisking. Done. Because despite the fact that the article purports to compare Duke’s 1991 platform to modern Louisiana politics, that misshapen comparison is the only thing to emerge. The only other point one gets about Duke’s platform is a vague, conclusory statement:
After being elected to the state House of Representatives in 1989, Mr. Duke filed nine bills, including measures implementing stricter guidelines for residents of public housing, repealing affirmative action programs and eliminating minority set-asides.
Following that generalization, instead of the promised comparison, the rest of the article focuses on Scalise, offering a debate as to whether he’s a racist politician in the Duke mode or a racist politician in the Republican mode.
In other words, the article is the usual tawdry, lazy, dishonest hit piece that takes up so much space in the New York Times. It did its work, though, since a couple of New York Times readers I know told me that, by being a conservative, I’m no better than David Duke, America’s most famous KKK-er.
It’s always the same: Over the weekend, because of family demands, I get almost no time at my computer, and my email starts to back up. By Tuesday, between my two email accounts, I have several hundred unread emails. I then do the logical thing: I cravenly avoid my computer. Finally, late on Tuesday or perhaps by Wednesday, my conscience finally catches up with me and I embark on a frenzy of responding to emails, reading articles, and posting.
I’m heading for my frenzy now, although I’m somewhat hamstrung by the various drives I have to make on behalf of young people who cannot drive themselves. By the time you read this post, I’ll have been working on it intermittently for several hours, so I sure hope it’s good.
An obligatory comment about Monica Lewinsky
She still loves Bill; Drudge destroyed her life; and it’s everyone’s fault but her own that her life imploded when her affair with the president went public. Even the world’s smallest violin is too big and noisy to express how little I feel for Monica Lewinsky.
Lewinsky wasn’t 15 when she embarked on an affair with Clinton, in which case the fault would be entirely his. She was 24, by which time she was old enough to have a moral compass that said “You don’t have an affair with a married man,” and also old enough to have figured out that, considering that her partner in adultery was the president of the United States, when/if the fecal matter finally hit the fan, it would be a Cat 5 fecal storm.
It was not Matt Drudge’s fault; it was not the “bullying” media’s fault; it was not Lucianne Goldberg’s fault; it was not even Hillary’s fault, much as I would love to blame her just because I don’t like her: it was Monica’s fault and Bill’s fault, and neither is excused by the bad behavior of the other. Both behaved immorally, both tempted fate, and both got caught.
The only thing that’s really unfair is that Bill didn’t end up as ignominiously as Monica did. Apparently the party that oh-so-valiantly fights for women everywhere (as long as they’re not in politically correct Muslim countries or homes) was happy to kick Monica to the curb, while feting and enriching and even worshiping the man who let her take the fall.
How the New York Times is spinning WMDs
Up until Bush actually invaded Iraq, everyone and his uncle thought that Saddam Hussein had WMDs. Indeed, as the New York Times recently made clear, everyone and his uncle (at least if they worked in the American government) knew that Hussein had WMDs . . . because the US had given them to Hussein during the Iran-Iraq war. With this knowledge finally out there, Bush ought to be vindicated and the Democrats ought to be ashamed, except that in the looking glass world of American politics, that’s not what’s happening.
Presumably because of embarrassment about having given these WMDs to Hussein, during the Iraq War the Pentagon kept their discovery a secret, even though revealing them would have vindicated the decision to go to war. Meanwhile, back in the present, following Obama’s pullout from Iraq, leaving it ripe for ISIS, the New York Times is saying that these particular WMDs don’t count, precisely because they were old and American, rather than shiny new and Iraqi. I’m unclear on why they’re less WMD for this reason, but there you have it. (If you see the NYT’s author, C.J. Chivers, on The Colbert Report, he makes this point explicit.)
So, in a swirl of finger-pointing, embarrassment, and misdirection, we once again lose sight of the main point: Saddam Hussein had WMDs. Sure, we gave them to him when he was sort of our ally, but the fear in 2003 was that, when he turned out to be our enemy, he might use our weapons against us — kind of like it’s reasonable to fear now that ISIS will use against us the American weapons that the US military accidentally delivered into its hands (if ISIS reports are accepted as true).
On immigration and amnesty, the only word I can think of is “impeachment”
I don’t need to say anything. Drudge says it all:
Oh, and I guess impeachment is the word I’m thinking of when it comes to Obama’s attempt to evade Congressional scrutiny of his deal with Iran. I certainly can’t think of any decent, upright, moral, pro-America, pro-ally reason for him to do that.
A few words about ISIS’s latest video
The latest ISIS-released video gets me back to a point I’ve made before about ISIS. This particular video shows a father leading the charge when it comes to stoning his daughter to death for dishonoring the family through alleged adultery. Other than those specifics, though, it’s pure ISIS: Men torturing and murdering women, children, teenagers, and other men.
What makes ISIS different from all other torturers in the modern era is that other bad actors tried to hide their barbarism from the world at large (although they rubbed their own people’s nose in it to make sure the people stayed at heel).
The Soviet Union hid its terrors in the Kremlin basement and in Siberian gulags. When Westerners came to town, the Soviets showed their shiny happy face. The same holds true today when visitors go to Cuba or North Korea: they get taken on the rounds of all the polished, “successful” looking communities, while the government hides the fear, poverty, and despair that underpins its regime. (Think too of the Potemkin walls China put up around ghettos in Beijing for the Olympics.) The Nazis, even though they used fear to control people within their territory, were secretive about their most foul plans. The most grotesque emanations of their foul ideology took place Gestapo headquarters in occupied territory or in concentration camps.
But not ISIS. The videos we see of beheadings and stonings and crucifixions aren’t copies smuggled out of occupied territory by resistance groups trying to make the world aware that ISIS is a truly terrible entity. Instead, ISIS proudly circulates these videos to the four corners of the earth.
The word “proud” is important. ISIS doesn’t distribute these snuff films merely to strike fear in the hearts of weak Westerners. It does so because, just as we promote the products of our factories, singers, dancers, intellectuals, painters, and architects because our own sensibility says that these products reflect well on us, ISIS believes that it is showing its best face when it crucifies teenagers, beheads babies, or makes a party out of a father stoning his own daughter to death.
To ISIS, snuff films are the good stuff that they have to offer: “You can go to New York, and all that you’ll see are some big buildings, shows, art work, and a tall green woman on an island. But if you come to Iraq, you’ll get to kill people in the most brutal way possible. ISIS: It’s the Islamic vacation paradise!”
In 2001, Holiday Inn accurately predicted the US response to Ebola:
Mark Steyn was prescient too….
While we’re talking about successful tea-leaf reading, Ed Driscoll says that Mark Steyn accurately, yet satirically, predicted Monica Lewinsky’s retrospective about her moment of infamy.
The Lewinsky essay appears in Steyn’s new book, The [Un]Documented Mark Steyn, a collection of his essays. At $29.95, the autographed hardback isn’t cheap but, if you buy it, you’ll not only get a great book with Steyn’s signature, but you’ll also help fund his continued litigation against unrivaled fraudster, Michael Mann (of the false hockey stick climate change canard).
I have to admit that I’ll be waiting for the Kindle version. Because of the arthritis in my wrists, I no longer want big, heavy books. They’re just too hard to hold. And because of my vision, which is about 20/2000 along with age-related far-sightedness, I like the way Kindle allows me to make my text nice and big. I console myself that, when I buy the Kindle version (assuming there is one) some part of that purchase price will still make it into Steyn’s pocket.
The LGBTQ mafia goes after Robert Oscar Lopez
If the name Robert Oscar Lopez is familiar to you, it’s probably because you’ve read his articles over at American Thinker. Lopez, a bisexual English professor who was raised by two moms, opted for traditional marriage. Indeed, he and his wife just had their second child. Unfortunately for Lopez, he’s a man of conscience and, with the societal elevation of same-sex couples who adopt, special order, or use egg or sperm donated babies, he’s bravely asserted that same-sex parenting shouldn’t be encouraged. According to Lopez, same-sex homes are not like other homes and it’s unfair to bring a child into that environment. As a result, he’s become one of the most reviled men in America, insofar as the LGBTQ lobby is targeting him in the most vicious and inciteful terms imaginable.
As between bad foster care and a loving same-sex couple, I think it’s a no-brainer. But there’s a lot weirdness about same-sex couples who sort of create their own babies. I know a lesbian couple that had a gay friend inseminate the more feminine half of the couple. The resulting baby was a boy. The moms are good women and very attentive parents, except that the woman who bore him hates men so much that she cannot stand to have her own son touch her. Meanwhile the other partner also hates men with ferocity, so she’s remarkably cool about the kid. What kind of a home life is that?
When I read the news, I know that biological mixed sex parents can be pretty horrible too. Nevertheless, history and data tell us that the worst situation happens to the step child or, in our non-marrying age, the child living with a boyfriend who hasn’t even married his mother. Adults in a household with a non-biological child seem to yield to some atavistic imperative to stomp out this vulnerable creature that doesn’t have their genetic lineage. I can’t imagine that doesn’t hold true for same-sex couples too.
And a little child shall lead them
If I were a political candidate, I wouldn’t necessarily listen to a 20-year-old college student giving me advice about employment policies, nuclear negotiations, or executive management. I would definitely listen to that same college student, though, for advice about how to communicate with the youth of his generation. And finally, Republican politicians seem to be figuring out that, when it comes to political messaging, it is indeed a little child who shall lead them.
An Ebola timeline
One of the first things I do when I write a legal brief is create a timeline. Seeing how events relate to each other in time can be quite edifying, and it can expose unexpected strengths and weaknesses in ones case. Sharyl Attkisson has performed this useful task for Ebola, putting together a nice neat timeline showing America’s relationship to the virus since July of this year.
I can’t figure out if John Wick is just a garden variety thriller, a trashy blood-fest, or something else. And doesn’t it really matter when it has Keanu? I actually probably won’t see it because I never see movies (Mr. Bookworm frowns on the expense and I’m loath to send money to Hollywood anyway), but a Keanu movie is always tempting….
Some are my finds, most are from Caped Crusader, and some are from Sadie:
America’s upper classes are now and have always been insecure. Lacking a hereditary nobility, social strivers have had to work hard to distinguish themselves from the masses when the only distinguishing feature, really, is cash. In the 19th Century, worried rich people formed “the Four Hundred” to distinguish the social “in-crowd” from the hoi polloi. America’s nervous upper class, distinguished now, as it was then, by money, not heredity, is still trying desperately to distinguish itself from those gun and God lovin’ American masses upon whom Obama heaped such scorn.
Our social “betters” go to Ivy League schools where earnest (and wealthy) Marxist professors assure them that only they and designated minorities (admired only at arm’s length, of course) are worthy, while the remainder of America’s citizens are crude, thrusting, greedy, and uncultured. Once having graduated from their expensive, precious academic incubators, they buy lavish apartments in select neighborhoods in big cities, or sprawling homes on large estates in lush suburbs. Their children’s elementary and high schools cost just as much annually as a year at a decent college. The wives, if they choose not to have a job, do charitable work for two different types of causes: (a) social issue causes (climate change and environmentalism, mostly) or (b) for poor people overseas. Apparently American poor are undeserving of their largess.
Oh, and one other thing: They all read the New York Times, subscribing proudly to its complicated and often clashing mixture of social Progressivism, ardent (yet always geographically distant) support for people of color, and support for extreme wealth.
Had America’s modern-day Four Hundred been reading the Times last Friday, they would have seen a review that is a perfect distillation of everything that America’s self-identified elite stands for, and I don’t say that as a compliment. The play, Dry Land, takes place in a Florida high school locker room after swim practice, as two young teens cement an unexpected friendship when the one asks the other to beat the living fetus out of her. And no, “fetus” is not my coy substitution for the “F” word. It is, instead, the baby that one carries within her. This is a play about a violent DIY abortion in a state that requires parental consent before an abortion can be performed on a minor. The playwright is a 21 year-old Yale senior.
Let me say this again: A graduate of one of America’s finest universities has a play off-Broadway, the plot of which involves one girl physically abusing another, pregnant girl, resulting in a deep friendship. Am I the only one who sees something wrong with this picture?
Certainly the New York Times saw nothing wrong about the play. Ben Brantley, the Times’ chief theater critic, wrote an excited, loving, almost completely incoherent review, lauding it as one of the best plays in New York. It did not surprise me to learn that Brantley is gay, not that there’s anything wrong with that . . . although I can’t help believing that his Progessive gayness (as opposed to, for example, a conservative gayness) informs his passion for a disturbing play focused upon an act that, in any other context than a Broadway stage, would justify arrest for assault with intent to cause bodily harm.
Or maybe it’s not incoherent at all. Maybe it’s just my rigid, conservative, hate-filled, gun-lovin’ mind that had me scratching my head when faced with this prose:
The two girls don’t know the protocol for sitting on someone’s stomach for medical reasons. So they improvise, awkwardly and goofily, with one planting her rump on the midsection of the other, which leads to both of them convulsing into giggles. The girl being sat upon laughs so hard that she wets herself.
They’re having a good if uncomfortable time. Most likely, so are you. Until the girls remember that what they’re trying to achieve is a do-it-yourself abortion. Even then, the giggles linger, though with a clammy, premonitory chill.
For, yes, “Dry Land,” a Colt Coeur production directed with rippling fluidness by Adrienne Campbell-Holt, is about abortion. No, that’s not correct. It’s about the complexities of friendship and the fears of the future that grip kids arriving at the threshold of adulthood. It is not — repeat not — an Abortion Play in capital letters, in the solemn, soapy manner of many a made-for-TV movie.
“Punch me.” Those are the first words you hear in “Dry Land.” The speaker is Amy (Sarah Mezzanotte), who wears a flashy bathing suit and a matching skintight air of worldly insolence.
She’s talking to Ester (Tina Ivlev), a ganglier, more callow type, who does her best to oblige by hitting Amy in the stomach. But it is not an easy assignment. It feels like kind of a joke, doesn’t it, or the manifestation of a hostility that Ester, a recent and still unsettled transfer student, surely doesn’t want to show.
The review goes on in this vein. The only real takeaway I had is that Brantley thinks it’s tremendously exciting that a 21-year-old Yalie wrote about teenagers punching at and peeing upon each other. (FYI, the New York Post reviewer also liked the play, in part because of its pro-abortion message. The review is less shrill, more intelligible, and still leaves me feeling that this play may be clever, but it’s also grotesque.)
I may be hypersensitive to Brantley’s arch and meaningless language because I recently completed another back-to-school night at my kids’ high school. After four years of these things, I’ve discovered that it’s always the English class that gets my hackles up. (The rest of the of the school is delightful.) These English teachers, many of whom like to boast to their students about their past drug and alcohol use, freely acknowledge that they don’t bother to teach English grammar. Maybe that’s a principled stand (“the kids should have learned grammar before they came to my class”) or maybe it has to do with the fact that their own own semi-literate screeds too often come complete with run-on sentences that encompass entire paragraphs; vicious cat-fights between subject and verb that go beyond mere disagreement; infinitives so split they practically sound like German verbs; and enough ambiguities to delight any litigator’s heart.
As you might expect, these teachers also don’t teach anything about the beauty of the English language. Instead, as I’ve written before, they go for cheap pop psychology and, always, Catcher in the Rye tops the list. I don’t remember whether CITR is well-written or not. I simply remember from my own high school days finding the author’s and the teacher’s obsession with sex almost as unpleasant as Holden Caufield himself. CITR is taught so that English teachers can have deep psychological discussions about their sexual feelings. That may be a worthy goal, but it doesn’t teach American students to read, write, or think.
Things used to be different. Once upon a time, English speakers had a shared culture based on the eternal wisdom of the Bible and Shakespeare. When writing his classic The Great War and Modern Memory, Paul Fussell was much struck by the sophisticated way in which all classes in that war used the English language:
Looking back on a bad day spent worrying over a forthcoming night attack, Captain Oliver Lyttelton, educated at Eton and at Trinity College, Cambridge, says: “Well, that day dawdled away. Ovid and his mistress would not have addressed the gods that day: O lente , lente currtte noctis equi.”
Remembering going up the line in a crowded third-class railway car, Private Stephen Graham, hardly educated at all, says:
Huddled up in a dark corner of the carriage a-thinking of many such occasions in life when I have parted for the unknown, listening to the soldiers’ tales, it recalled the mood of Clarence’s dream when he was pacing on the hatches of the ship at night with the Duke of Gloucester, talking of the Wars of the Roses [an allusion to Shakespeare’s Richard III, describing a horrible nautical nightmare].
An allusion more proper to a sailor than a soldier, we may think, but still very pointed and effective , and certainly astonishing in view of the circumstances and the insecure idiom of the first half of Private Graham’s sentence. Indeed , not the least interesting thing about his statement is the impression it gives of having been written by two different people: a virtual illiterate, who conducts the proceedings down to recalled; and a man of letters, who, because Shakespeare is now the focus, takes over at that point with impressive accuracy and economy.
Equally striking is General Sir Ian Hamilton’s literary behavior at Gallipoli. He has been expecting four crucial French divisions to arrive in the autumn of 1915. Told that they will be postponed a month, he is shattered. The terrible word postponed keeps sounding in his ear, and he thinks of Keats’s “Ode to a Nightingale” and of
Forlorn! the very word is like a bell.
Aware that this postponement will very likely mean the death of the Gallipoli expedition, he turns to his diary and writes: “Postponed! the word is like a knell.” It is a gesture which, together with Captain Lyttelton’s and Private Graham’s, suggests the unparalleled literariness of all ranks who fought the Great War.
By 1914, it was possible for soldiers to be not merely literate but vigorously literary , for the Great War occurred at a special historical moment when two “liberal” forces were powerfully coinciding in England. On the one hand, the belief in the educative powers of classical and English literature was still extremely strong. On the other , the appeal of popular education and “self-improvement” was at its peak, and such education was still conceived largely in humanistic terms.
There were few of any rank who had not been assured that the greatest of modern literatures was the English and who did not feel an appropriate pleasure in that assurance. (Fussell, Paul, The Great War and Modern Memory (pp. 155-157). Oxford University Press. Kindle Edition.)
Fussell readily acknowledged that America has never had such a self-conscious regard for the English language, but it used, at least, to have a reverence for English well taught and beautifully used. Now, it’s self-styled elite rave about precocious playwrights writing about Southern teens bonding over fetal bludgeoning.
I’ve got about 30 tabs open. They’re memory hogs, so I want to share their contents with you as quickly as possible so that I can shut them down and look for more stuff. Hold onto your hats, ’cause this is going to be quick:
Voices inside administration challenge Obama’s finger-pointing and feigned ignorance re ISIS
It’s old news already that Obama has no strategy for dealing with ISIS, despite its speedy metastases. The way he puts it, he was kind of taken by surprise by this JV team’s breakout growth and, anyway, everybody else in his administration is giving him trouble.
Funnily enough, that’s not what everyone else in the administration says. According to those paying attention and not playing golf, ISIS’s growth was foreseeable and predictable. Moreover, the military, which will have to clean up the mess (and it will be messy) is “apoplectic” about Obama’s refusal to deal with the issue.
Benny Avni explains that Obama’s fundamental problem may be that he refuses to acknowledge that ISIS is genuinely evil.
Obama may not be strategy-free; he may just be other-focused
As did many others, Daniel Greenfield took note of Obama’s disgraceful weak-horse announcement that he hasn’t come up with a strategy yet for ISIS, despite the fact that ISIS has undone all of America’s work in Iraq; that it killed and dispossessed thousands of Christians; that it killed James Foley (and has since killed Steven Sotloff; and that it has declared war on America. Greenfield, however, doesn’t think Obama is without a strategy. His theory is that Obama just isn’t that into American (or even civilized) interests abroad. Where it counts — race relations, golf scores, etc. — Obama is totally in control.
And no wonder Obama feels comfortable focusing solely on the issues that matter to him, rather than those that matter to the nation. After all, as David Harsanyi explains, if you’re a Democrat, there’s nothing Obama can’t do — Constitution be damned!
Obama’s narrow focus may explain why, even as ISIS beheads Americans abroad and promises to do so at home (a reasonable threat given Obama’s open border policy), Obama’s FBI can issue its annual threat assessment and forgets to include Islamic terrorism.
As I wrote to a friend of mine wondering what it will take for Americans to view ISIS as a direct threat to themselves, “Let’s just say that, on my ‘real me Facebook page, the same Progressive friends who went Facebook-ballistic about the possibility that women would have to continue to pay for their own birth control (just as they have always had to do), have been utterly silent about ISIS. They know what their priorities are, and an existential Islamist threat doesn’t even get on the list, let alone make it to the top ten.”
ISIS puts the lie to the meme that Islamists are oppressed Third Worlders
One of the problems for the Obama administration this time around is that the jihadists refused to conform to the Leftist stereotype. You know that stereotype. It’s the one that assures us that all America-haters have a valid right to hold that position because they’re American-oppressed, poverty-stricken residents of the Third World. After all, who can forget Michael Moore’s post-9/11 claim that al Qaeda is precisely the same as the Minutemen who fought in the American Revolution. This time, though, we know in advance who the Muslim terrorists are — and they are affluent, spoiled, thrill-seeking brats created at the nexus between Islamic and Western culture who revel in violence, blood, and perversion.
In Belgium, Muslims are preparing for a takeover
Belgium, once an artistic center of Christian, European culture, and now the center of the European Union, is being readied for a Muslim takeover.
Not all Muslims want to get with the sharia program
Some Muslims are recognizing that there is a problem with their faith, but few of them speak out. Glenn Mohammed, though, is one of the few and the brave. An Australian attorney, he was sufficiently disturbed by the Muslim community’s opposition to Australia’s proposed new anti-terrorism laws to write an opinion piece calling for Islam to reform:
The Muslim community is quick to stand up and use its democratic right to protest against being singled out. It feels under attack by the government. Maybe it is, maybe it is not, but the government is able to explain and justify the proposed legislation.
When will the Muslim community see the other side of this argument and realise that yes, we are under attack. Our faith is under attack. Our faith is being eaten up from within by fundamentalist elements around the world who twist it to suit their political agendas and interpret it to make their case. To them it’s nothing but a tool to control people. They justify their actions through our faith.
When will Muslims stand up and accept that yes we have problems within our faith. Maybe a few more problems than other faiths, but sure, we have problems. They don’t just affect us as Muslims, they affect our friends, their families and our neighbours. They affect a society that welcomes us here, treats us as equals and gives us the opportunity to live a decent and dignified life. Democratic Australia gives us a voice and tries its best not to judge us.
The issues that we face within our religion range widely from individuals brutally beheading people in the name of establishing an Islamic Caliphate to, at a local level, female genital mutilation.
Muslims need to be able to discuss these issues openly and denounce barbaric behaviour. Instead, we choose to remain silent and then criticise a government that tries to make Australia safer. We use democratic values such as the right to equality, to claim the existence of discrimination, racism and Islamophobia.
How fitting: OJ Simpson set to become a Muslim
OJ is a violent and angry man. OJ is a murderer. OJ is in prison. All of these are perfect ingredients for a prison conversion to Islam. Let me remind you, once again, what my cousin, the former prison chaplain had to say on the subject:
It is not a contradiction to be a Muslim and a murderer, even a mass murderer. That is one reason why criminals “convert” to Islam in prison. They don’t convert at all; they similarly [sic] remain the angry judgmental vicious beings they always have been. They simply add “religious” diatribes to their personal invective. Islam does not inspire a crisis of conscience, just inspirations to outrage.
Filipino forces probably saved their own lives by ignoring UN commands to surrender
When Filipino UN forces found themselves surrounded by Syrian Islamists, the UN issued a clear command: Surrender!
The Philippine government countered that command and, instead, Filipino troops fought their way out. By doing so, they undoubtedly spared themselves a horrific, possibly deadly, captivity; showed just how craven the UN is; and showed that trained troops can take on the Islamists, who’s greatest strength is their fanaticism, not their military prowess.
The Parents of a slain Navy SEAL call on Obama to resign
It’s always a tragedy when a vital, dynamic, competent, powerful, incredibly well-trained, patriotic young man dies in battle. It’s an even greater tragedy when his death occurs under the command of a leader who has nothing but disdain for such warriors, and one moreover who, whether because of a traitorous affinity for the enemy, ignorance, carelessness, or ennui, engages in policies that make each such death a waste, achieving nothing for our nation’s benefit. No wonder, then, that slain Navy SEAL Aaron Vaughn’s parents have written a viral letter demanding Obama’s resignation:
After finally choosing to view the barbaric, on-camera beheading by ISIS of freelance war correspondent James Foley, I have been left with a level of rage known only to those of us who have sacrificed unspeakable offerings on the altar of world peace.
My offering was my only son — Aaron Carson Vaughn. Aaron was a member of SEAL Team VI. He was killed in action when a CH47D Chinook, carrying thirty Americans and eight Afghans was shot down in the Tangi River Valley of Afghanistan on Aug. 6, 2011.
Many times over the past three years, I have been asked what drove my son to choose his particular career. What made him want to be a Navy SEAL? My answer is simple.
Aaron Vaughn was a man who possessed the courage to acknowledge evil. And evil, once truly acknowledged, demands response. Perhaps this is why so few are willing to look it in the eye. It is much simpler — much safer — to look the other way.
That is, unless you are the leader of the Free World.
As Commander-in-Chief, your actions — or lack thereof — Mr. President, cost lives. As you bumble about in your golf cart, slapping on a happy face and fist-pounding your buddies, your cowardly lack of leadership has left a gaping hole — not only in America’s security — but the security of the entire globe. Your message has come across loud and clear, sir: You are not up to this job. You know it. We know it. The world knows it.
Please vacate the people’s house and allow a man or woman of courage and substance to seize the reigns of this out-of-control thug-fest and regain the balance we, America, have provided throughout our great history.
Thanks to your “leadership” from whatever multi-million dollar vacation you happen to be on at any given moment, the world is in chaos. What’s been gained, you’ve lost. What’s been lost, you’ve decimated. You’ve demolished our ability to hold the trust of allies. You’ve made a mockery of the title “President.” And you’ve betrayed the nation for which my son and over 1.3 million others have sacrificed their very lives.
But this should come as no surprise, since your wife uttered a vile statement on Feb. 18, 2008, during the primary campaign — one that speaks volumes of your true convictions. “For the first time in my adult life, I am really proud of my country,” she said.
I am sure my deceased son thanks you for that, Mrs. Obama. Oh, and you’re welcome.
Never in my lifetime have I witnessed such despair and such growing fear that the world’s last best hope, America, has finally been dismantled. Perhaps the better word is transformed — fundamentally transformed. Come to think of it, it’s become difficult — if not impossible — to believe things haven’t gone exactly as you planned, Mr. President.
Amazingly, in five short years, your administration has lurched from one disaster to another. You spearheaded the ambitious rush to end the wars in both Iraq and Afghanistan — with no plan on how to do so effectively. Also, the release of “the Taliban five” in exchange for one American — without consulting Congress — is also on your shoulders.
You have been at the helm during unprecedented national security leaks — including, but not limited to the outing of SEAL Team VI on the Bin laden raid, the outing of the Pakistani doctor who provided the intelligence for that raid, the outing of Afghanistan’s CIA station chief, and the outing of your personal “kill list” to make you look tough. In addition, 75 percent of American deaths in Afghanistan and 83 percent of Americans-wounded-in-action have occurred on your watch, according to icasualties.org.
And now, we have this recent, heinous event: the beheading of an American citizen by a barbaric organization you foolishly referred to as “the JV team” in your statements to the New Yorker magazine in January.
You, sir, are the JV team. It’s time for you to step down and allow a true leader to restore our honor and protect our sons and daughters.
America has always been exceptional. And she will be again. You, Mr. President, are a bump in our road.
Obama’s not just a bump in the road; he’s a genuine failure
Charles Kesler remembers when people were calling for Barack Obama to be added to Mt. Rushmore. In a wonderfully written article, he explains that problems with Obama’s presidency militate against that type of elevation.
Political correctness and the refusal to see evil
You’ve probably already heard about the scandal in Rotherham, England. In that Yorkshire town, social services allowed well over a thousand British children to become sex slaves for the town’s Muslim sex trade. Why? Because these government employees were scared that they’d be charged with racism if they protested against the men of the “Asian” community. (For “Asian,” read: “Pakistani Muslim.”) Allison Pearson writes a scathing editorial about political correctness that’s become an accomplice to evil.
We’re not immune, of course. The Washington Post published an op-ed in which an African-American studies professor says that Ferguson isn’t about black rage. Instead, it’s all about angry white people, such as the judge who had the temerity to tell the jury to apply the law in determining whether George Zimmerman acted in self-defense when Trayvon Martin tried to pound him to death on a pavement. (And keep in mind that this was a judge who was very hostile to Zimmerman.)
Reading the op-ed is like reading Alice Through the Looking-Glass, only without the charm. This is quite obviously a women who has never traveled outside the US. Had she left American shores, she would have realized that America is probably the least racist country in the world. I think she could benefit from some time spent reading Keith Richburg’s Out Of America: A Black Man Confronts Africa.
Will the California drought affect California politics?
One of the pressing issues for years in California’s Central Valley, once the produce capitol of the world, has been water rights. Farmers in the valley kind of want that water to grow crops so that they can both feed their families and feed the world. Democrats in California want to keep the water away from farmers in order to ensure a healthy population of Delta Smelt, a teeny, undistinguished, but nevertheless environmentally threatened fish.
Historically, Hispanics in the Central Valley, because of identity politics, have hewed Democrat. The Delta Smelt battle, however, puts them on the same side as the farmers because the Hispanics are also seeing their livelihoods threatened.
The battle between environmentalists and those who make their living off the land is heating up as California experiences one of its terrible cyclical droughts (they happen every 30 years or so, and this is a bad one). One Hispanic California Assemblyman has spelled it out:
Rep. David Valadao (R-Bakersfield) lashed out at Democrats, including congressional opponent Amanda Renteria, on California’s urgent drought problem, saying Democrat policies will fail to provide relief for millions of Central Valley residents living with severe water shortages.
“Our forefathers expected droughts, we went through droughts, and we always prepared for the next one because there was always another one coming,” Valadao told The Hill this week. “And that’s why we built the infrastructure, the reservoirs, the canals, and all those types of things.”
“Since the ’80s, they’ve started making it harder and harder to use that infrastructure and to send the water out into the ocean instead of allowing it to come down here and help these communities survive, and that’s where the change is,” he continued. “We can’t make it rain, but it wouldn’t have been as bad if we’d been allowed to pump water and put it in storage… they’re saying fish are more important than the people who live here.”
One wonders if Hispanics in the Central Valley will be able to look at their knee-jerk Democrat affiliation, realize that it harms them, and rejigger their political orientation. I did just that and I feel better for having done so.
The climate change con continues to unravel
I guess it would probably help if the same Hispanic farm workers could be brought to understand that climate change is a scam. Indeed, as the Daily Mail trumpeted, the Arctic Ice cap, ignoring Al Gore’s apocalyptic (and, for him, profitable) predictions about vanishing ice, covers a vast territory and is extremely thick.
We are most certainly stewards for our environment, and we owe it to ourselves and our children to avoid pollution. Climate change has nothing to do with those laudable goals. Inside, it’s about population and capital control. One hopes that, as more and more data backs up the righteousness of the position held by “deniers,” perhaps the environmentalists’ power will wane. I certainly hope it wanes in the courtroom when Michael Mann’s case against Mark Steyn is finally heard. Mark Steyn has the facts so, in a just world, he should win on the law.
Another Jew abandons the New York Times
As you know, more than a decade ago, I realized there was something wrong with the mainstream media when I found myself sitting in my car, screaming at my radio as NPR misreported stories about Israel . . . and always with an anti-Israel slant. A reform rabbi who was, of course, a lifetime New York Times reader finally hit his end-of-tolerance moment with the Times biased coverage of Operation Protective Edge.
Rabbi Richard Block gives chapter and verse about the Times’ disgracefully biased coverage. Every Jew should read it.
The Jews’ secret weapon of mass destruction
Maybe I shouldn’t say “secret weapon of mass destruction.” Maybe I should say that the Jews have developed “a secret weapon to unleash mass hysteria” . . . and Daniel Greenfield knows what that weapon is: A hammer, some nails, a bit of wood, a little stucco, etc. Yes, it’s the dreaded “Killer Israeli House.”
Two excellent articles from Richard Baehr
Richard Baehr, who co-founded American Thinker, is one of the most astute political analysts around. That’s why it’s a great day when he has two articles published:
Hillary Is In No Rush, about Hillary’s decision to delay any official announcement of a presidential candidacy.
War on Jews: Europe and now America, about the Democrat Party’s carefully cultivated war against Jews in America, something that should concern all good people. We’re about a decade behind Europe when it comes to anti-Jewish malevolence, but are gaining ground fast.
I urge you to read both.
A new feature from the Watcher’s Council
The Watcher’s Council actually has a full name: Watcher’s of Weasels. We weasel watchers have decided that we should start voting for a weasel of the week:
Hello and welcome to the Watcher’s Council’s new feature, ‘Weasel Of The Week’ feature, where we award the golden plastic Weasel to a public figure who particularly deserves to be publicly slimed and mocked for his or her dastardly deeds during the week. Every Tuesday morning, tune in for the Weasel of the Week nominations and check back Thursday to see which Weasel gets the votes and walks off with the statuette of shame!
And while we’re talking about the Watcher’s Council, be sure to check out the forum, which discusses favorite and least favorite sports. I was so crazy busy this weekend, I forgot to participate. Had I done so, I would have said my favorite is martial arts, because it’s the most fun thing I’ve ever done (and never mind the skeletal damage I’ve sustained), and that my least favorite is baseball, because I find it about as exciting as watching grass grow . . . in a drought.
Federal agents with dirty minds; or, to a hammer, everything is a nail
In New Jersey, every year, a father has taken pictures of his two adopted daughters hugging each other as they travel on a ferry. It’s for one of those family albums where you see the kids grow up in the same pose year after year.
This year, though, the father got a little bit of a surprise when a random agent from Homeland Security, who just happened to be on the ferry too, suggested that he watch himself because it looked as if he was engaged in sex trafficking with teenage Asian girls. Either the man’s family dynamics with his adopted daughters were really peculiar (and I did once see a man at a swim meet who kept stroking his 14-year-old daughter, which was creepy), or our federal government is getting carried away with its oversight of American citizens. Tell me what you think.
Read the College Boards’ Leftist framework
Stanley Kurtz has been sounding the alarm about a total Leftist takeover of American history studies in high school. Go here, and get links to learn more about what’s happening. As he says, the more people who know about this travesty, the harder it will be for the Leftists in charge of AP history to make it happen.
Marriage help is on the way
All of you here know my friend Earl Aagaard, who has written a thousand smart comments, written too few wonderful guest posts and, unbeknownst to you, provides me with invaluable editing and content help behind the scenes. His daughter, Laura, and her husband, who are fairly young marrieds with young children, have started up a regular podcast about married life, called Marriage Startup. In their most recent podcast, they interview Earl and his wife, Gail, who have been married for 45 years. You can believe me when I say it’s good stuff from people who understand love, respect, and commitment.
Obama is so not funny
Although Kyle Smith’s article is about Obama, it’s not about politics but is, instead, about culture, which is why I placed it near the end of this round-up. Smith tackles the fact that comedy writers have been unable to find any humor in Obama, not because he’s a pathetic, narcissistic, vicious, cowardly little man set on destroying America, but because he’s too perfect for them to touch.
Bob Hope is one great little dancer
Kevin D. Williamson says that the IRS scandal is the worst scandal ever in American politics, since it fundamentally undermines our form of government. I’m inclined to agree with him and would even go so far as to wonder whether he’s been reading my blog.
And while I’m on the subject of destroying our form of government, Barack Obama is again investigating whether the power to issue executive orders is actually the power to re-write entirely federal legislation to suit his own political purposes. The administration claims it’s contemplating this exercise of power because the current program is controversial — but it’s only controversial because there are a lot of people who want to grant de facto amnesty to illegal immigrants. Here’s the deal in America as it once was: if you didn’t like the law, you changed it through the legislative process. Only in banana republics do you let the Dear Leader ignore the law and do it his way.
Even if common core works perfectly in some pristine education program on an Ivy League campus, it’s a disaster in real life. H
Here’s a squirrely idea from me: One of the things that totalitarian governments do is separate children from the parents, either physically or emotionally. (Remember that Hitler’s Youth would turn in their own parents for infractions.) To the extent that common core makes it impossible for parents to help elementary school aged children with what used to be basic math problems, you have to wonder if a goal, or a pleasant by-product, of the Common Core program is that it makes children see their parents as stupid, unhelpful, and unreliable.
Hillary lies again, this time about Iran. You’d think Hillary would eventually wise up to the fact that, in an internet age, it takes minutes, not years, to expose blatant lies. Of course, she’s counting on the media to shelter her. That’s naive too. In 2008, the media dropped her in a New York minute when Barack came along last time around. It even seems as if Bill’s dropping her, and Keith Koffler amusingly ponders why that’s so.
Career overseas civil servants should also think about dumping Hillary. The DiploMad explains that she (and her whole State Department) broke the special bond between America and her employees overseas.
More and more people are catching on to the fact that the Left is entirely adolescent in its approach to itself and to world governance. Matthew Continetti applies that adolescent theory to the New York Times, which is caught up in a firestorm made up of allegations that it fired Jill Abrahamson, its first female executive because she complained about wage discrimination. (And isn’t that irony lovely from a paper that carries the Democrats’ water on the wage discrimination campaign issue?)
Everything you need to know about life in Obama’s America: The same Pentagon that is actively or passively responsible for the VA program that intentionally killed veterans through neglect is working hard to get a sex change operation for convicted traitor Bradley Manning.
Meanwhile, the insanity on America’s college campuses continues. This time, a college is dropping “hump day,” because the camel theme (complete with a camel petting zoo) is seen as disrespectful to Arab culture.
And finally, a look into the ugly heart of ProgressiveLand:
I know this is a politically incorrect thing for me to say, but I couldn’t care less about Michael Sam’s sexuality. If it were up to me, it wouldn’t be news at all, or it would be at the bottom of page three in the sports section. I’m not homophobic; I’m homo-disinterested. Peculiarly enough (nowadays), I measure people by attributions other than their sexual orientation.
The New York Times, however, considers Sam’s announcement that he is gay to be major news, not non-news, and has given him lavish coverage (which I haven’t bothered to read, because I really don’t care). As far as the Times is concerned, a gay college football player is front page news:
Think about this: in the world of the New York Times, it’s minimally newsworthy that (a) the Secretary of State failed to provided necessary security for an Ambassador in a tremendously dangerous region, where he and three others subsequently died; (b) that the Secretary of State and the President both seem to have been AWOL while the Ambassador and three others were dying; (c) that the Secretary of State, the President, and the entire administration lied about events leading up to and including these four deaths; and (d) that the Secretary of State loudly proclaimed that none of this mattered. The New York Times also thinks this same Secretary of State would make a stellar president. (And maybe that’s true, if you like your presidents to be utterly unprincipled and un-accomplished.)
Considering that the New York Times styles itself the paper of record, wouldn’t you love to ask the petty, squabbling, arrogant staff there, “Just what record are you talking about there?”
Until our relatives moved away from Los Angeles, twice a year we used to make the trek from the Bay Area to Los Angeles and then back up again. In the early years, when we hit the central valley, we went through productive farmland as far as the eye could see. In the last few years — including the Bush years — we often found ourselves driving through a barren Dust Bowl. It wasn’t a natural drought (which we in California are suffering through this year). Instead, it was a government-created drought, brought about by rabid environmentalists who have successfully insisted that saving a very small fish is more important than feeding a nation. Charles C. W. Cooke has more.
The Military must view troops by the content of their character and their commitment to the United States, instead of just looking at beards and turbans. Standards are certainly necessary for military discipline and cohesion, but it’s a stupid military that turns away the best people because of minor deviations from the uniform.
The New York Times has always been a Leftist mouthpiece, but it prided itself on being a dignified Leftist mouthpiece. Back in the day, it was “the Gray Lady” rather than the “wide-eyed, stoned conspiracy theorist.” At PowerLine, in one of the best articles I’ve seen on the subject, John Hinderaker goes into full lawyer mode to analyze and destroy the Times over-the-top anti-Koch editorial — an editorial that seemed to have emerged without editing from the bowels of The Daily Kos. I should add that, while Hinderaker’s demolition job is masterful, it’s going out to the choir. The people who should be listening to him . . . won’t.
While we’re on the subject of the far Left Times, P. David Hornik correctly identifies the Times’ Thomas Friedman as one of America’s worst purveyors of old-fashioned, “Elders of Zion” type antisemitism.
From the Proving The Point Department comes an Atlantic blog comment elaborating on Rand Paul’s pointed remarks about Bill Clinton’s predatory behavior regarding women. Adam Chandler starts by quoting Rand Paul’s comments, and then analyzes them briefly in the context of whether Hillary should be forced to pay for Bill’s sins. He then quotes from Senate Majority Whip Dick Durban, who vociferously defends Hillary. Chandler wraps up with a paragraph meant to point out that Bill didn’t really get a pass for his sexual misconduct:
Other yet might contend that President Clinton is hardly the recipient of a free pass with regard to l’affaire Lewinsky, even all these years later. During the 2012 Democratic National Convention, the Associated Press controversially incorporated the affair in a fact-check it conducted of Bill Clinton’s convention speech. And, as we mentioned, when Bill Clinton was named “Father of the Year” by the National Father’s Day Council just a few weeks back, radio silence was hard to come by.
One has to wonder if Chandler read what he wrote. If Bill really didn’t get a pass for his sexual misconduct, which ranged from affairs, to sexual harassment, to rape, to predatory behavior against young girls in the work place, then he wouldn’t be speaking at the 2012 Democrat National Convention or be named “Father of the Year.” He wouldn’t be the dynamo who fronted much of Obama’s 2012 campaign, and Democrats wouldn’t be excited about the fact that a Hillary presidency gives them a Bill Clinton repeat. Of course he got a free pass. The fact that a few articles rake up his significant misdemeanors means nothing when the Democrat establishment still embraces enthusiastically this old lech. Bill Clinton — a Teddy Kennedy for the 21st Century.
She’s a high school senior, but damn! if she doesn’t give a stunningly good talk about the way in which the New York Times, despite knowing about the Holocaust, not only downplayed it, but effectively kept American policy away from helping Europe’s besieged Jewish population:
There is no anti-Semite worse than a Jew. (See als0 Liberty Spirit’s J’Accuse!)
Hat tip: Richard Baehr
A friend sent me a very funny email. I don’t know if the numbers are precisely accurate, but I do know that they’re accurate enough to serve a larger truth, namely America’s overwhelming turn in 1942 from a peacetime nation into a fully armed, fully operational wartime nation. In this way, the facts stated distinguish themselves from the Progressive concept of “truthiness,” which means “fake, but [God alone knows how] accurate”:
During the 3-1/2 years of World War 2 that started with the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor in December 1941 and ended with the Surrender of Germany and Japan in 1945, the U.S. produced 22 aircraft carriers, 8 battleships, 48 cruisers, 349 destroyers, 420 destroyer escorts, 203 submarines, 34 million tons of merchant ships, 100,000 fighter aircraft, 98,000 bombers, 24,000 transport aircraft, 58,000 training aircraft, 93,000 tanks, 257,000 artillery pieces, 105,000 mortars, 3,000,000 machine guns, and 2,500,000 military trucks.
We put 16.1 million men in uniform in the various armed services, invaded Africa, invaded Sicily and Italy, won the battle for the Atlantic, planned and executed D-Day, marched across the Pacific and Europe, developed the atomic bomb and ultimately conquered Japan and Germany.
It’s worth noting, that during the almost exact amount of time, the Obama administration couldn’t build a functioning web site.
To me, living in my head as I do, a head filled with news and political commentary, the above is both funny and devastating. It puts into perspective the pathetic disaster that was the Obamacare exchange launch and should remind everyone that a government this bad at one thing is almost certainly also a government incapable of performing the most basic functions . . . such as protecting us from our declared enemies.
Immediately after getting the above email, I read that the New York Times is working hard to re-write the Benghazi slaughter so as to clean up both Hillary’s and Barack’s reputations. And I know, and you know, that even though the New York Times is losing subscribers like mad, that fact is kind of irrelevant, because the Times still the news source for all sorts of other newspapers across America. Go ahead. Check out your morning local rag. You’ll see that at least one story comes direct from the Times or from the Washington Post or from the Associated Press. As Conan proved in a funny, fluffy video, no matter the outlet, the story’s always the same.
The Obama administration is now boasting that one million people signed up for Obamacare in December. Maybe it’s true; maybe it’s not. The two things we know with certainty are (1) that the media won’t press for the truth and (2) that the media will work as one in the coming months to shill for Obamacare. The glitches are over; the wonders are on their way.
Yes, we who have not drunk the Kool Aid know that Obamacare will collapse under its own weight, but that doesn’t matter. All that the media hustlers need to do is keep those plates spinning until the day after the November 2014 election. After that, they’re home free no matter what happens.
And please don’t look to the Republican Party for help. It’s so busy trying to take out the Tea Party (it’s bad for business, doncha’ know?) that it’s ignoring the most wondrous political opportunity handed to it since . . . well, since never before. Rick Moran sounds the warning, but don’t expect the money guys in the GOP to hear that tocsin:
Are Republicans smart enough to counter this propaganda with nightmare stories about sky-high premiums, the cancellation of perfectly good insurance policies, website errors, and other tragic experiences that ordinary people have had with Obamacare? Democrats couldn’t accuse them of cherry picking bad news when they’re cherry picking good news.
This is a long-term war to be played out over the coming years. What I don’t see yet is a commitment from the national Republican Party to engage the resources necessary to counter the Democrats move for move. There doesn’t appear to be a plan in place which means they’ll be improvising on the fly. That just won’t cut it.
With the Obamacare website now largely operational, the first phase of the battle is over. But unless the GOP stays on its toes, they are likely to be buried by the administration PR machine.
The Leftist PR machine is gearing up hard. Moreover, with this video as a graphic illustration, please remember that the agile Democrats are already on the move, while the Republicans are the ones sitting in the car: