Another stellar Prager U video, this one explaining why the Palestinians still don’t have their own state — and no, you can’t blame the Jews for this one:
Teen Vogue turns against Israel with a gauzy, one-sided view of Palestinians. This sewage-like flow of Leftist ideology traces back to American academia.
For those naive enough to think that Teen Vogue is a fashion magazine, please disabuse yourself of that notion as quickly as possible. It is, in fact, a hard Left propaganda vehicle that slips into people’s homes under the guise of fashion. It came into my house, for example, when my daughter got a free subscription automatically delivered to her after ordering clothes from an online site that caters to teenagers.
I’ve documented several times that the magazine’s primary purpose is to sell Leftism on every subject under the sun including, but not limited to, campus rape, Woodie Guthrie-esque communism; the entire spectrum of the LGBT social and political push against traditional Western value’, misanthropic “feminism”; and abortion. (You can see these earlier posts here, here, and here.) I was going to say of Teen Vogue that “any resemblance to an actual fashion magazine is pure coincidental,” but that’s not true. Teen Vogue’s deliberately takes on the protective coloring of a fashion magazine, but don’t be fooled: its purpose is Leftist indoctrination, pure and simple.
Just a couple of weeks ago, the magazine amped up the Leftist propaganda by advocating for the Palestinians without any recognition of Israel’s historic and legal rights to the land, or the virtue of her conduct:
[Teen Vogue’s] February 27 piece entitled “The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: What You Need to Know” suggests that shift also entails publishing factually shoddy commentary.
Despite the ambitious title and long length, the one-sided account omits many things that teens trying to learn about current events ought to know and instead reads like a fact sheet from the Palestinian side of the issue.
Author Emma Sarran Webster has no apparent knowledge or background on the complex issues involved, billing herself as an expert on health and beauty with a “deep love for social media and cat videos.” She relies heavily in the article on a single “expert,” University of Wisconsin professor Nadav Shelef. Shelef’s writing, which has been praised by far-left professors, focuses heavily on settlements, and as a result, Webster’s article also focuses overwhelmingly on “controversial” settlements as the central issue. This, while completely ignoring
Palestinian incitement and incentivizing of violence, as well as Palestinian intransigence. In fact, Webster includes an entire four-paragraph section subtitled, “What are settlements, and why are they so controversial?”
Yet, there is no section on Palestinian cash payments to convicted terrorists or to the families of terrorists who were killed, and there is no section that discusses the glorification of violence in the Palestinian government and society.
The article also omits discussion of historical Jewish ties to Israel and, unconscionably, the repeated Palestinian rejection of extensive Israeli peace offers. Where was the section on Arafat and Abbas walking away from the creation of a Palestinian state?
In addition, the article contains several misrepresentations: it references “Palestinians” who lived a century ago, and says that in 1948 Arab nations “began fighting on behalf of Palestine.” It misrepresents UN Resolution 242 and the Fourth Geneva Convention, and fails to put UN statements in the context of that body’s well-documented bias.
CAMERA is polite in its comments and imputes the myriad omissions and errors to ignorance. I would not be so polite. I’ve been following the magazine long enough to understand that it is selling the current Progressive point of view, which is a long way from the centrism people remember from the pre-1990s Democrat party.
One of the hallmarks of the new Democrat party — a party that used to be part of America’s overall support for beleaguered Israel, a liberal democracy surrounded by genocidal tyrannies — is its hostility to Israel. You need look no further than the race for DNC chair, when Keith Ellison, a long-time purveyor of antisemitic canards and a friend of famed antisemites, came within a hairbreadth of winning.
I’m about to get on my particular monomania train here, so feel free to turn away from the article about now. My monomania is about American colleges and universities. It’s easy for conservatives (including friends of Israel) to point to the media and Hollywood as the culture infecting America’s traditional commitment to liberty at home and abroad. That’s not where the problem started, though, and that’s not where the canker of Leftism is most strong. All of America’s problems are tied to its colleges.
I’ve cleared my spindle and the articles I linked are a feast for the hungry mind — the Middle East, climate change, policing, gender, Obamacare, and more.
There’s land if the Palestinians want it. Did you know that President al-Sisi in Egypt has offered the Palestinians a state that would include Gaza plus 618 adjacent square miles in the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula? This offer reflects the fact that the Egyptians, like the Jordanians, Saudis, and every other Sunni Arab state around can’t stand the Palestinians.
With Iran looming on the Iranian, the Sunni nations are becoming more aware that Israel is their bulwark against Iran. If they can get rid of the Palestinian issue — and get the troublesome Palestinians out of their countries — they can unite to face off against Iran. You can read more here.
The Palestinians, of course, will not go for it. They don’t want their own country. They want the Jews’ country. The question is whether the combined weight of the Sunni Arab world, perhaps with help from the Trump administration, can force them to take what they don’t want and finally, once and for all, leave everyone alone. The problem is that the Palestinians (with a lot of UN help) have raised too many blood-thirsty generations who view Israel as their own land, to be taken with fire and sword.
Once again, a sociologist proves that sociology is not science. I laughed so hard I choked on my morning cereal when I read a Los Angeles Times op-ed by an academic sociologist assuring readers that atheists raise more moral kids than religious people do. The trick to this column is that the atheistic sociologist gets to define what constitutes “morality.”
I’m sure you won’t be surprised to learn that morality means having values that precisely track the Progressive/Democrat social and political agenda. My only question is for how much longer taxpayers are going to let their state and federal monies flow into the academic institutions producing this kind of biased garbage?
One brave man in blue. The ACLU sued the Milwaukee police department alleging (what else?) that it’s raaaacist. This is, of course, nothing more than a shakedown using the court system. Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn refused to be intimidated:
“If they [the police] are willing to risk their lives to protect our disadvantaged communities than the least I can do is be willing to risk lawsuits to do the same thing.”
Flynn said that the ACLU and organizations like them want only to “drive a wedge between the police and their communities.”
“The people that actually live in the neighborhoods punctuated by gunfire and non-fatal shootings every night of the week demand effective and responsive policing” while the “concerns of the neighborhoods are never on the agenda of groups like the ACLU.”
Chief Flynn also pointed out that the police are protecting blacks and other minorities, who are significantly more likely than whites to be victims of violent crime. Bravo, Chief Flynn!
Kerry is an incredibly stupid, evil man. Only stupid people cling to the “two-state” idea given that the Palestinians have already walked away three times from offers giving them everything they asked for and, instead, have doubled down on their genocidal fury. The Palestinians keep the “two-state” solution alive as chum for morons.
Israel’s Foreign Ministry issued a statement about Kerry’s malevolent, ill-informed speech:
In light of that speech, is it any surprise to learn that Kerry and Obama are working to submit a proposal to the UN that unilaterally recognizes a Palestinian state and gives half of Jerusalem to the Palestinians. Please remember, as you read the following, that the last time Arabs controlled Jerusalem, Jews were banned from their ancestral capital. [Read more…]
This is a random news edition because I’ve spent the day doing such scintillating things as cleaning the kitchen (including behind the refrigerator) to quell an ant infestation and spraying clothes with Pemethrin to prepare for an upcoming trip to some malarial hot spots. Throughout the course of the day, whenever I had a minute, I grabbed random, but interesting links I found on Facebook, through my favorite blogs and, always my best source, from friends who email me. Because I’m heading out soon for Cirque du Soliel, brevity will be the name of the game.
How to handle rape. In America, we’re told that telling women actions they can take to defend against rape is a no-no because it constitutes “blaming the victim.” Instead, men should be taught not to rape. In Austria, which is yet another European country overrun by non-white, non-Christian (or Jewish or Hindu or . . . ) men who come from a decided rape culture, it’s all up to the women to protect themselves.
How to deal with terrorism. Writing at The Atlantic, Uri Friedman looks at the frighteningly simple truck attack in Berlin and concludes that there are only three ways to deal with terrorism on European soil: secure public spaces, expand government surveillance, or learn to live with it. He seems to have forgotten a fourth approach: Expel all the recently admitted refugees. And then expel all known trouble makers. And then break down the ghettos in which the remaining Islamic communities incubate fanaticism.
Progressives say their massive freakout is warranted. Even Progressives are realizing that their complete meltdown is out of the ordinary. But the LA Times is there to assure us that Trump is so horrible — and his supporters so evil — that Progressive mental collapse is an appropriate response. Really.
Ivanka is too good to help women. Elle, yet another women’s magazine that sells Leftism, assures us that Ivanka is a disaster for women. Hillary’s many (ahem) accomplishments were an inspiration, of course, but Ivanka is so damn accomplished that she’s intimidating and sets women’s rights back by decades, maybe even centuries. Moreover, the entire goal of her father’s upcoming presidency is an exercise in nepotism to benefit her alone. Really.
The older of my two dogs is very high-strung and she got so frightened by the wind that carried the fog in tonight that I’ve had to sequester her and me in my home office so that Mr. Bookworm, who needs to get up for work tomorrow, can sleep. She shows no signs of settling, so I’m blogging.
No matter how you slice it, Trump is the less risky gamble. Writing in the Claremont Review of Books, Publius Decius Mus quite graphically presents the issue that I have been arguing all summer:
2016 is the Flight 93 election: charge the cockpit or you die. You may die anyway. You—or the leader of your party—may make it into the cockpit and not know how to fly or land the plane. There are no guarantees.
Except one: if you don’t try, death is certain. To compound the metaphor: a Hillary Clinton presidency is Russian Roulette with a semi-auto. With Trump, at least you can spin the cylinder and take your chances.
Precisely. Trump, with all his flaws, is better than Hillary. Up until a few months ago, one could argue that Hillary is just another garden-variety Leftist and that the American republic will survive despite her.
That’s all changed now. Knowing as we do of her extraordinary corruption — whether in running the State Department as a Pay-for-Play profit center for herself, her husband, and her daughter, or deliberately exposing all of America’s state secrets to try to hide her gross malfeasance — electing her to the presidency means that America has fully embraced banana republic status.
In the wake of a Hillary victory, thanks to Comey and the American voters (including all those #NeverTrumpers), there will no longer be a rule of law in America that applies equally to all citizens. We will in one fell swoop have destroyed a legal system that goes back 1215 when England first put into writing in the Magna Carta a policy saying that no one, not even a king, is above the law. As of now, Hillary and her cronies are above the law and it will be a disaster if the American people put their imprimatur on that utterly corrupt, anti-democratic principle.
One more thing: As Publius Decius Mus explains, Hillary’s been wrong about every single policy stance she’s ever taken (including the ones where she’s changed her stance repeatedly according to the latest poll data), while Trump, in his fumbling, bumbling way, has been right about all of the most important policy issues facing America. So maybe he’s not so bad after all.
I have lots — and I do mean lots — of interesting links for you today. Before I start, though, I want to address a point I read from someone worried about what Brexit and Trump mean. In an age of anti-intellectualism, he said, bigotry is inevitable.
Believe it or not, considering that I wholeheartedly support Brexit and grudgingly support Trump, I agree with that sentiment. Where I probably differ from the person voicing the idea is that I don’t see the anti-intellectualism and resulting bigotry amongst the Trump and Brexit voters. Instead, I see it on the Left — in the universities, in the media, and in the offices of politicians and financiers.
You see, I’m a little old-fashioned in the way in which I define an “intellectual.” You don’t get to denominate yourself an intellectual simply because you attended or teach at a university, or have a white-collar job that first required one of those university degrees. Instead, when I think of an intellectual, I think of someone with a very broad, and often very deep, fund of knowledge about myriad things, ranging from history to literature to science. This person has read widely, has been exposed to the great thinkers of the Judeo-Christian, Western intellectual tradition, and is as open to true knowledge as a dry sponge is to water.
In today’s world, you will not find this broad-minded, rich intellectual in any of the universities, whether among students or faculty, nor will you find this kind of mind in the post-university white-collar professions. These academics and professionals may style themselves as an intellectual elite, but the evidence on the ground shows that universities no longer teach, they propagandize. Students are no longer exposed to broad swathes of history, literature, and science. Instead, they drill down endlessly into victim studies, victim literature, and climate change “science.” They come out of college less educated than when they went in. To the extent they might have entered with open minds and a basic grasp of logic, they emerge with tightly-closed minds and a ferocious bigotry, one that is based entirely on skin color, sex, and sexual orientation.
This bigotry holds that the only white people who aren’t evil are women and people from the LGBT spectrum. All other white people (i.e., straight men) must constantly virtue signal that they have accepted that they were born sinners and must spend their lives expiating that sin. This same bigotry holds that persons of color, any color, are weak and childlike, and must be protected from white males who fail to do constant obeisance to the victim hierarchy. “Good” whites, of course, understand how delicate persons of color are and treat them with the appropriate combination of reverence and condescension.
It is these anti-intellectual bigots who support a transnational elite that exists without regard to national boundaries or national values. The problem for these self-styled elites is that, while they benefitted from their transnational Progressivism, those over whom they’ve had power have suffered as the masses always do when an elite group parts ways with democracy and looks out for itself. This is why Trump and Brexit represent the triumph of democracy over the elite class’s anti-intellectualism and bigotry.
And now to the links, of which I have many:
If there were a speed-blogging competition, my goal would be to win it with this round-up post. I’d meant to blog at length and at leisure today, but life caught up, including a glitch with the bank, which lost the signatures that would enable me to liquidate my mother’s trust. Aaargh! Now I have to go through probate. Aaargh! Aaargh!
Thomas Sowell agrees with me that Obama is a classic fascist. “What President Obama has been pushing for, and moving toward, is more insidious: government control of the economy, while leaving ownership in private hands.”
Obama lied about every aspect of Obamacare. No, really, he did. Every one of the promises he made to public has proven false.
“How hard is it to understand that radical Islamist jihadis have declared war on the West? In simple English this means: they will find you and kill you wherever and whenever they can.”
Da Nile isn’t just a river in Egypt. It’s also a state of mind in Europe, which refuses to acknowledge, despite the Islamists’ best efforts, that there’s a war going on.
England is a dhimmi nation that sold out its youth. In Peter McLoughlin’s Easy Meat: Inside Britain’s Grooming Gang Scandal, he tells precisely how Britain’s dhimmi-fied laws, which were directly intended to silence any criticism of Islam or Muslims, resulted in England officially turning her children over to Muslim pedophiles. Janet Levy reviews the book and it’s a horrifying tale of Britain’s attacks on girls and their families for attempting to get protection and redress.
Obama’s administration isn’t in denial; it just lies. If you didn’t already read or hear about it, when the French President acknowledged the Islamic aspect of the terrorism ripping apart bits and pieces of Europe, the White House, in true Stalin fashion, erased those words from Hollande’s speech.
Islam and crime. You’re not imagining that prisons are incubators for Islamism. An expert says that violent prisoners are ripe for any type of extremist ideology. My cousin, the former prisoner minister, understands that Islam is a particularly attractive belief system:
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 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.
Andrew Klavan likes Ted Cruz. Klavan lists Cruz’s objective accomplishments and abilities, likes what he sees, and struggles to understand how people can say Cruz — a lifelong constitutional conservative — is no different from Trump — a sort-of conservative as of last July. I agree with Klavan, of course.
Yet another government lie. Is everything we think we know about the cost of living data false? And worse, is the actual cost of living increase we’re facing in the double digits in many cities? The Chapman Index says we’re the victims of a sustained lie hiding how much less our money buys. In other words, inflation is much worse than you realize.
Rank and file Marines horrified by Obama orders. Actual Marines, not people who just pretend to be military experts for the sake of advancing the Obama administrations social re-engineering goals, are appalled by the demand that the Marines feminize everything, including the word “rifleman.” Incidentally, I found this link on the Facebook feed of a young Marine friend who raised in Progressive Marin. He noted that nothing can re-engineer the fact that, at a basic biological level, women aren’t as strong as men — and no amount of gender illusions will change that reality.
Conservative voters like Cruz. GOP establishment figures have always hated Ted Cruz, which I think is because he’s made them look like what they are — liars who told the voters one thing and then voted with Obama on just about everything. Now that the Republican primary is narrowing, the principle that “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” appears to be coming into play, and the GOP is starting to line up behind Trump (who has, like the GOP itself, a distinguished RINO record on many issues). It’s worth remembering, therefore, that ordinary people — voters, not players — like Cruz.
Thomas Sowell on elections. Elections aren’t about revenge or anger or “making a statement.” Instead, as Sowell says, “They are held to choose who shall hold in their hands the fate of hundreds of millions of Americans today and of generations yet unborn.” My brain is always a better and smarter place after reading Thomas Sowell. I wish more Americans, especially young Americans, would read him. Sadly, it turns out that, thanks to 50 years of Leftist control over education, too many of America’s so-called best and brightest are a terribly ignorant group of people who know nothing about America’s history, constitution, or political structure. (H/T Sadie)
I did it again — I let my inbox get out of hand, so much so that I woke up this morning to discovery over a thousand unread emails in the email accounts for which I’m responsible. Going through them isn’t my favorite activity (too much guilt about emails I inadvertently ignored and too much stress about decisions I have to make), but I do find lovely links and comments that I view as buried treasure. This round-up, therefore, is a treasure-hunt edition.
Yo, Obama! History hasn’t happened yet.
I great disliked Obama’s oval office address. One of the lines that irritated me most was this one: “My fellow Americans, I am confident we will succeed in this mission because we are on the right side of history.”
History, of course, refers to the past. Obama is using a nonexistent historical reference point to predict the future, and then using this prediction to justify inaction. (This is very similar, of course, to the whole “climate science” joke, which uses falsified historical data and computer programs that cannot factor in all future possibilities to predict the climate future, and then takes this Garbage-In/Garbage-Out data to justify costly action.)
Some months ago, my friend Patrick O’Hannigan sent me a post he’d written about the way in which the Left misuses the concept of history. It seems singularly on point now that the President has used a hypothetical future history to justify his passivity when faced with one of the most consequential, and existential issues of our time:
The Left constantly says that it’s not antisemitic with its endless attacks against Israel. Instead, its rabid spokespeople insist, the Left (whether rejoicing under the name of Progressives, Democrats, Liberals, Labour Party members, Europeans of various stripes, etc) is just keeping a tight focus on the horrible suffering of the Palestinian people — and, of course, it’s Israel that causes that suffering. When Israel frees the Palestinians from the bondage, the protests will stop.
But what happens when others cause the Palestinian people to suffer in ways that go so far beyond Israel’s checkpoints that they are impossible to compare? What happens when there are news stories about mass slaughters and beheadings against the Palestinian people, not by Israel, but by ISIS?
The Left’s attacks against Israel are antisemitism, pure and simple. And if you need a graphic illustration of the double standards at work here, I’ve got one for you:
Just a random thought, but could Obama be persuaded to stop Iran from developing the bomb by convincing him that the mere possibility of a nuclear accident or intentional detonation is bad for the environment and would, in fact, worsen climate change?
Or perhaps we could convince huge numbers of LGBTQs to immigrate to Israel (the only country in the Middle East that welcomes them, rather than kills them) so that he’d have a reason he could live with to justify Israel’s continued existence?
Or maybe we could convince Obama that, if the land really does belong to the Palestinians, all the Jews there are illegal immigrants and therefore entitled to amnesty (not to mention lots of American money).
Come on, folks! Work with me here. We need to spin this so that Obama feels ideologically and emotionally comfortable supporting Israel.
These links aren’t related to Christmas Eve. They are simply interesting things that came my way today, as I was getting my family ready for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. (To those new to the blog, although I’m Jewish, I was raised celebrating both Christmas and Hanukkah in entirely secular ways. That means trees and menorahs, and gifts of course.)
Understanding what cops deal with and what they can do
Given that rioters ran riot again today, this time because a cop shot a teenager who can be seen on video pulling a gun on the cop, this seems like the perfect time to bring two things to your attention. The first is the best “what it’s like for the police” post I have seen since the whole Ferguson thing became a cause celebre for the Left. I posted it on my real-me Facebook page and I urge you to share it with your friends in whatever way you do share posts that are chock-full of accurate, relevant data relating to major events (and the race/Leftist riots rocking major urban areas in America are major events).
Once you’ve read that post (which is fascinating from first word to last), then check out the following Facebook post. Be sure to stick to the instructions and watch the video — one or two or more times, if necessary — before you read the post. After reading the post, watch the video again:
Distilling “political correctness” to its essence
Snoopy the Goon, my friend and fellow Watcher’s Council member who blogs at Simply Jews, has what may be the definitive post when it comes to defining “political correctness.” Even better, it has a perfect illustration at the end.
Will the Middle East end with an ISIS versus Israel stand-off
During my lunch yesterday with my wonderful, intelligent, and conservative friend (he’s the one who helped lead me across the Rubicon from Democrat to conservative), my friend said that ISIS is the future in the Middle East. Because ISIS has the passion, the oil money, and the brutality, all Arabs and Muslims in its path will either join up or be slaughtered. This is so because of two factors about Arab/Muslim fighters: First, while they are vicious in pursuit, they are craven in retreat. That means that they’re lousy defensive fighters. When they lose, they are either slaughtered en masse by the even more violent victor or, because (as bin Laden knew) they are drawn to the strong horse, they desert their side in the fight and join the victorious army.
Indeed, even as we speak, it looks as if Israel will find itself facing off against ISIS very soon, since ISIS is pressing it from both north and south. Nor should Israel expect much help from Saudi Arabia, at least according to my friend. He theorizes that, to the extent the Saudi decision to drop oil prices (an act aimed at American fracking) is devastating the Russian economy, Putin will retaliate by siccing Muslim extremists into the heart of Saudi Arabia.
I have no love for the Saudis, whose petrodollars are largely responsible for the radical Islamist rise around the world. Nevertheless, to the extent the Saudis have suddenly realized that they created a monster, and are cautiously edging over to Israel’s side, I have this peculiar feeling I will regret it if Putin succeeds in destroying them from within.
My prayer for this holiday season, in addition to seeking victory and protection for all of the innocents in ISIS’s path — whether Christian or Muslim, old or young, male or female — is for Israel to have the wisdom, the strength, and the courage to see this thing through, and emerge unscathed and stronger than ever.
Israel’s long ties to the land continue to be revealed
One of the most pernicious lies to come out of the Muslim world, and it’s a lie that the Christian Left embraces fervently, is that Jews have no ties to the land, and that it’s Palestinians who are Jesus’s true people. That’s why I celebrate every time archaeologists discover yet another sign that Jews’ ties to the Holy Land run back longer and deeper than those of any other people in the world:
Archaeologist Limor Talmi was minutes away from wrapping up her excavation of an ancient garbage pit last Thursday, when a piece of 1,600-year-old glass was brought to her, bearing imprints of menorahs.
The timing was fortuitous, not only because she was readying to close up shop but because it was also the second day of Hanukkah, the Jewish holiday most closely associated with the seven-branched candelabra.
In the same vein, God bless David Bernstein for instantly ridiculing and destroying the suggestion that, if Joseph and Mary were alive now, they’d run afoul of Israeli checkpoints:
Seriously, this sort of historical revisionism, treating ancient Jewish Judeans as if they were Palestinian Arabs, and then analogizing modern Israel to the oppressors of Jesus and his family, a common trope in the UK, would be laughable if it were not so pernicious. Pernicious not simply because it’s a ridiculous distortion of history, and not simply because it’s often accompanied by a large dose of anti-Semitism, with Palestinians playing the role of Jesus and the Israelis being the foreign oppressors crucifying him. But pernicious because it goes to the true heart of the Arab-Israeli conflict–the failure of the Arab side to recognize that the “Zionists” are not the “European settler-colonialists” of Third Worldist imagination, but a people with a three thousand year plus tie to the Land of Israel, whose religion was born there, who ruled two separate kingdoms there, who have prayed toward Jerusalem for two thousand years in their ancient Hebrew language, and so on.
Sadly, the Left ignores the fact that the truth shall set you free — no doubt because, so far, lies have served them so well.
Was it really the Norks who went after Sony?
Sony has announced that it will screen The Interview online, so I’m not going to take any more pokes at it, at least not for now. Indeed, it’s decision has led some at the conspiracy-oriented InfoWars website to wonder whether this whole thing wasn’t a marketing scam.
Others are wondering whether the Norks were involved at all. Marc Rogers, who describes himself as “the director of security operations for DEF CON, the world’s largest hacker conference, and the principal security researcher for the world’s leading mobile security company, Cloudflare,” has a different theory:
All the evidence leads me to believe that the great Sony Pictures hack of 2014 is far more likely to be the work of one disgruntled employee facing a pink slip.
Rogers provides a detailed analysis to support his thesis. Since I am currently less than enthralled by federal agencies, I think it’s entirely feasible that the FBI is wrong, wrong, wrong, and that Rogers is correct.
The history of Jews’ Christmas Day love affair with Chinese food
It’s a longstanding joke: on Christmas, Jews eat Chinese food. In an article originally published in The Atlantic, Adam Chandler says that this is no joke and explains how it came to be.
Apropos Chinese food, if you’re in San Francisco’s Chinatown, I have a Chinese restaurant to recommend. I have never recommended a Chinese restaurant in Chinatown. In my experience as an SF native, the Chinese restaurants in Chinatown are always either (a) too geared to tourists; (b) too dirty, along with having horrible greasy, gristly food; or (c) too Hong Kong style, which means bland flavors and lots of offal. The other day, though, we ate at a wonderful Chinese restaurant called Hunan Homes. It’s one block from the affordable Portsmouth Square garage, which makes it relatively easy to get to. In addition, the restaurant is very clean, the service is excellent, and the food is affordable and delicious.
Cirque du Soleil plug
Since 1984, when it first burst on the international scene, I’ve seen every Cirque du Soleil show except for “O” which was closed for repairs when I was in Vegas. For the last ten years, I’ve found the shows boring — muddled, contrived, and stale.
With Kurios, however, Cirque’s most recent show, Crique has redeemed itself. The show’s theme is Steampunk, which is a sort of futuristic Victorian theme. The costumes were gorgeous, the sets imaginative, the music charming, and the acts were simply wonderful. Our group, which ranged in age from teenagers to late middle age fogies, all enjoyed every minute.
Sorry for the downer title, but the news is anything but good, wherever one looks. At the home front we’ve had flat tires, broken bones, and dead phones. (The broken bone belongs to my exchange student, who is disappointed, but not too terribly damaged, thank goodness.) The past few day’s headlines haven’t done anything to cheer me up, either.
Because I like to share, I’m passing my temporary existential despair on to all of you. And just to make you feel a little worse, let me add that our current administration, rather than trying to pull the rip-cord on the parachute so that we don’t hit bottom, is instead trying to cut the parachute’s suspension lines.
How bad is Obama? So bad that even Democrats view him as toxic
Republicans didn’t run away from Bush until 2008. Here it is, only 2014, and Democrats are treating Obama as if he’s radioactive. (The link is to a Wall Street Journal article. If you can’t read the article, try googling the title for an accessible link.)
Michael Dolan explains how Obama got what he wanted: A partnership with Iran
Obama came into office promising to work with Iran. It turns out that, as is true of all the promises he made that were deleterious to America’s well-being , he kept this one. (It’s a useful yardstick, incidentally: Promises about things that will help Americans? Obama breaks. Promises about things that will hurt Americans, America, and America’s allies? Obama keeps.)
Michael Dolan, who is a senior fellow of the Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution and was both a former deputy assistant secretary of defense and a former senior director of the National Security Council, has been looking at Obama’s conduct since ISIS appeared on the scene and figured out Obama’s game-plan: Obama is using ISIS as a way to partner with Iran.
Obama is engaging in this de facto partnership with Iran, even though, as Dolan also explains, doing so allows Iran to go nuclear. A nuclear Iran destroys any balance of power in the region, not to mention threatening Israel and Europe. Moreover, it’s worth remembering that as a Shia state, Iran doesn’t just believe in the apocalypse, it believes that it has a mission from Allah to bring about the Apocalypse itself. (In this, Iran is quite distinct from Christians who believe in an Apocalypse, but who dread it and do nothing to cause it.) There’s nothing like a nuclear bomb to get a little Apocalypsing started.
To go on, Obama partners with Iran even though it means turning our backs on the Saudis who, while horribly rotten, are less horribly rotten than Iran and have been our allies for a long time. He does even though partnering with the mullahs is a slap in the face to those Iranians who are yearning to breathe at least a little more free (just as Obama ignored them during their attempted Green revolution). He does even though Iran has been funding the worst kind of terrorism — much of it aimed at America — for decades. And he does this even though Iran has made it clear that it still has as its goal the destruction of Israel and America, and the establishment of a world-wide Islamic caliphate.
Obama is Iran’s useful idiot, helping it to make sure that any caliphate the emerges isn’t Sunni and ISIS-controlled, but is instead Shia and Iran-controlled. Put another way, Obama isn’t just another Leftist ideologue; he’s a truly evil man who affirmatively seeks out the devil as a dancing partner.
Media ghasties and ghoulies
If you want to get your scare on before Halloween, watch Andrea Mitchell trying to save Abortion Barbie from her tasteless, desperate, sleazy attacks in Texas on Greg Abbott. You know what I was thinking when I watched that? I was thinking “Mommy, make those mean, scary ladies go away!”
The New York Times uses Britain’s embrace of Hamas as a reason to chastise Israel
When does a media outlet cross over from being partisan and become evil? I actually think the New York Times just rolled across that line with its latest editorial about Israel.
As you may recall, the British Parliament voted endorsing the idea of recognizing a Palestinian state. A media outlet with a decent moral compass would have attacked England for supporting a “state” that has nothing state-like about it: It’s government is run like a mafia institution, it has no economy and no infrastructure, and its idea of “human rights” is to deny women, Jews, Christians, and homosexuals status as humans. Anyone of common decency would recognize that it is a disgusting reflection on modern England that its Parliament would side with a grotesque, corrupt, tyranny with only murder on its mind.
But the Times knows who the bad guy is in this case and it’s Israel — for daring to build more Jewish homes in historically Jewish neighborhoods. Or as the Times editorial board puts it:
The vote is one more sign of the frustration many people in Europe feel about the failure to achieve an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement despite years of promises.
Funnily enough, the editorial makes no mention of the fact that the Palestinians have contributed exactly nothing to peace talks, negotiations, and compromise. In Times-land, this one is all on the Jews.
I used to say that the Times was good only for lining bird cages. It’s dropped in my estimation. It might, just might, be useful as a repository for the blood, vomit, and diarrhea of an Ebola patient, but I suspect it would perform even that most basic waste-collection function badly.
The New York Times also brings its evilness to the subject of chemical weapons in Iraq
When the Iraq War was Bush’s war, the New York Times led the charge of those claiming that Bush lied about weapons of mass destruction. Now, without even a blink at its volte face, it’s leading the charge to claim that Bush is evil because he exposed American troops to Saddam Hussein’s store of chemical weapons — i.e., weapons of mass destruction — in Iraq.
I’m not letting the Times perfidy blind me to the fact that American troops have suffered because the Bush Pentagon left them ill-prepared to come across WMDS. After all, if you’re claiming a war to wipe out WMDs, you should probably have systems in place to protect your troops. The Pentagon’s failings, though, don’t make me any less disgusted with the Times.
Let me count the ways in which the Democrat party is the party of death
Democrats may get all teary eyed when cold-blooded murderers meet their makers in a gas chamber after due process, but they’re pretty cavalier about most other deaths. They don’t mind a steely-eyed Obama sending drones to attack Pakistani and Yemenite civilians. They’re okay with grandma being sidelined by the Obama death panel. They assume that the vets who died on the VA’s watch were probably baby killers. They’re copacetic with suicide if life is just too tough.
Oh, and one more thing: abortion is empowering. Not just a necessary evil, which is an argument many Americans might support, but empowering and a “social good.” I’m betting that’s exactly the way Heinrich Himmler felt when he organized the Holocaust.
If you ever wondered why knowing geography matters….
Marin General Hospital had an Ebola scare because its staff confused the Middle East with West Africa. The country’s in the very best of hands….
Pigs are flying because I agree with Paul Krugman
Don’t worry, I don’t agree with Krugman about anything substantive. I do, however, think he’s correct when he says “Obama, although clearly not the natural politician, he is a consequential president.”
Where Krugman and I part ways is that Krugman thinks Obama is consequential in a good way, whereas I think Obama’ss consequential status relates to the fact that he’s inflicted such terrible damage on our once-thriving capitalist, constitutional, sovereign nation that we may take decades to recover, assuming we ever can. There’s no saying, after all, whether it’s possible to recover from a wrecked economy, socialized medicine, destroyed borders, a dysfunctional military facing an existential threat, and diseases that resist modern medicine, especially when such medicine is ineptly administered.
The Washington Post says Ebola isn’t really all that bad
Trying to strike an optimistic tone, the Washington Post says that Ebola isn’t as bad as it could be. It notes that (so far, at least), not everyone who came into contact with the Liberian who brought the disease to Dallas has gotten infected, and we definitely have better ways to treat symptoms than they do in West Africa. Still, even though the WaPo is trying to make lemonade from lemons, our broken borders and the Democrats’ funding priorities (which did not include focusing on plague-like infectious diseases) all mean that I’m not sanguine.
When it comes to Ebola and the media, I agree with Benjamin Shapiro
To follow-up on my point about the WaPo’s peculiar optimism, Benjamin Shapiro sums up the media’s relationship to Ebola, which is that it matters only when it affects the media itself. His starting point is media personality Nancy Snyderman’s decision to get herself some soup, despite the fact that she was technically quarantined, along with a crew member:
It’s one thing for Liberian citizen Thomas Eric Duncan to carry around an Ebola-ridden woman, get on an airplane to Dallas, walk into a hospital with symptoms, and then walk out again. Such behavior can be attributed, at least in part, to ignorance. It’s another thing entirely for a highly educated medical professional to endanger those around her for some miso.
But that’s the world of the media, where the proper response to the possibility of contracting Ebola is, “Don’t you know who I am?” Double standards abound here; media members lather Americans into a frenzy over the threat of a disease that has, to date, claimed a grand total of one life in the United States. Then they go out for lunch in public after being told that they could be carrying the virus.
The Snyderman story is truly part of a broader egocentrism in the media. The media didn’t give one whit about the Internal Revenue Service targeting conservative non-profit applicants — but they went absolutely batty over the Department of Justice targeting reporters. The media don’t seem to care very much about demands for transparency from the Obama administration by the American public — but they’re fighting mad about the Obama administration’s refusal to let them photograph him golfing. After all, it’s one thing for normal Americans to get stiffed, and quite another for our betters to feel the effects of government’s heavy hand.
Canada’s Supreme Court says quoting the Bible re homosexuality is a hate crime
Yes, the Bible is not nice about homosexuals. Indeed, it’s so not nice that Canada’s Supreme Court has determined that someone who cites to the Bible in opposition to homosexual conduct is guilty of a hate crime.
Here’s the acid test, though: Would the Supreme Court reach the same ruling if it was asked to determine whether someone quoting from the Quar’an in opposition to Jews is also guilty of a hate crime? Somehow I doubt it, but maybe I’m just too cynical for my own good.
Paul Kengor is right that conservative radio is committing suicide by greed
I only listen to conservative talk radio when I’m in the car . . . but lately I’m never able to listen to conservative talk radio when I’m in the car. The reason for my inability to listen is because I’m usually in the car for short hauls and, when I tune in to the local talk radio stations, all I get is advertisements.
From the top of the hour until seven minutes past the hour . . . advertisements. From nineteen minutes past the hour until thirty-five minutes past the hour . . . advertisements (including the show’s host saying “Welcome back, and now for a word from our sponsors.”) The same pattern applies in the second half of the hour. Because I usually need to be at places on the hour or the half-hour, I invariably find myself tuning in to those fourteen or so minutes of advertising at the top or the bottom of the clock face. So lately, I haven’t even bothered to try. I just listen to music or call my sister.
And why are we in this terrible situation? Greed, says Paul Kengor:
Why so much junk? To pay the costs, of course. But more specifically, to pay the gigantic, unsustainable fees these shows demand.
Of course, it’s a free market. Rush and other hosts are free to earn whatever they receive. But also because it’s a free market, their stations and listeners are free to bolt. What surprises me is the degree to which some conservative hosts are willing to let their stations and listeners bolt, even as they rake in piles of money. I’m especially surprised at how these hosts are willing to allow their excellent product to be diluted and damaged by an intolerable stream of annoying advertisements.
It seems to me that these conservative hosts—champions of the free market—are not listening to the free market. In my local market, Rush and Hannity and Glenn Beck have lost a 50,000-watt blow-torch in favor of a vastly inferior 7,000-watt signal that will be heard by far fewer listeners.
I love Rush, but even he’s not worth listening to ten minutes of commercials during a 15 minute drive.
I leased an electric car, so oil prices dropped
I’m never kidding when I say that the moment I enter the stock market the market drops and the moment I pull out the market rises. I just have that kind of timing.
My timing means it’s no surprise to me at all that, now that I’ve leased an electric car so as not to run up huge gas bills driving a minivan around for local errands, oil prices are plummeting. At our nearest ARCO, which sells the cheapest gas in Southern Marin, prices have dropped by about 20 cents per gallon in the past two weeks. That’s huge.
Power Line wonders if the Saudis are doing this on purpose in an effort to undercut America’s booming oil business. Could be. I’m not sure, though, that the Saudis have the oil resources to play this kind of price-cutting game. I recall from a discussion at my blog many years ago someone who worked in the oil industry saying that Saudi wells are finally running try. It seems to be a perilous game to drop prices when you’re running out of product to sell.
Will all these oil and electric cars soon be obsolete anyway?
Remember how, in Back to the Future, Doc perfected time travel using the energy from nuclear fusion? Well, we may soon be doing a little time travel ourselves, because Lockheed says the future is now (or at least just ten years from now):
Lockheed Martin Corp said on Wednesday it had made a technological breakthrough in developing a power source based on nuclear fusion, and the first reactors, small enough to fit on the back of a truck, could be ready for use in a decade.
Anything that will break the back of the Muslim oil nations and silences the stupidity of the environ-mental-ists can’t come soon enough for me.
Lovely Lena leans . . . and so do several other old-time Hollywood beauties
Robert Avrech isn’t just a brilliant writer and thinker. He’s also extraordinarily knowledgeable about old Hollywood — the Hollywood of the Turner Classic Movies I watch with so much love.
Avrech recently wrote a beautifully illustrated post about the leaning boards that Hollywood’s leading ladies reclined upon to get the weight off their feet without ruining costumes so tight or elaborate that the actresses were often sewn into them. In a comment, I contributed my mite by pointing out that, in Singin’ In The Rain, Lena Lamont, the lovely lady with the horrible voice, and a personality that was even worse, was seen leaning on one of those boards. Robert, bless his heart, went out of his way to update the post to add a picture of the lovely Lena leaning.
At the most recent Watcher’s Council forum, the Watcher asked us, if we could be a superhero, which one would we be? Because my weekend passed in an alcoholic stupor (except without any alcohol, but only the stupor part), I completely missed the forum. If asked, I would have said Superman, simply because he’s always been my favorite superhero. Tune in here to see what other Council members had to say.