March 31, 2008
Personal notes: The Wedding
As I noted earlier, we attended a wedding in Northern CA on Saturday. Here's a few pics from my cheapy camera:
Introducing the new Mr & Mrs.
Politics as religion: The Prophet Gore
It's not just Barry Obama who has become the cult figure of a faux religiousity by Democrat followers who usually make public their contempt for the godbotherers of non-left-centered Christianity and Judaism; but note the language in covering Al Gore as the possible Dem nominee come the convention in Denver:
Plans for Al Gore to take the Democratic presidential nomination as the saviour of a bitterly divided party are being actively discussed by senior figures and aides to the former vice-president. [...]
Former Gore aides now believe he could emerge as a compromise candidate acceptable to both camps at the party's convention in Denver during the last week of August.
Two former Gore campaign officials have told The Sunday Telegraph that a scenario first mapped out by members of Mr Gore's inner circle last May now has a sporting chance of coming true.
Couple this re-floating of Gore as Deus ex machina with a jaw-dropping exercise in fawning, ankle-licking worship from the ostensible news show, 60 Minutes
When Al Gore ran for president in 2000, he was often ridiculed as inauthentic and wooden. Today he is passionate and animated, a man transformed. His documentary, "An Inconvenient Truth," won an Oscar, and last year he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Now he's a certified celebrity, the popular prophet of global warming, and has helped change the way the country thinks about the issue.
Listen to the video and hear Leslie Stahl doing a verbal Lewinsky on Gore ... her coquettish attitude, complete with eye flutter and head tilt, is genuinely insulting to any half-way intelligent audience member who might want Al Gore to be asked the hard questions vis a via human caused
Gore is trying to redefine this as a moral and spiritual issue. "We all share the exact same interest in doing the right thing on this. Who are we as human beings? Are we destined to destroy this place that we call home, planet earth? I can't believe that that's our destiny. It is not our destiny. But we have to awaken to the moral duty that we have to do the right thing and get out of this silly political game-playing about it. This is about survival," he said.
The hysteria over
"They’re almost like the ones who still believe that the moon landing was staged in a movie lot in Arizona and those who believe the earth is flat. That demeans them a little bit, but it’s not that far off."
How far would a President Gore go to shut up people like Roger A. Pielke Jr?
A larger question is why Leftists like Gore always find a new "crisis" to browbeat ordinary American citizens. And a "crisis" that really is manufactured as a moral crisis when true evil exists. One clue to the emptiness of the usual crisis-mongering is the way Leftists and their fellow travelers in the MSM change the language with no reference to the past. Global warming is now climate change. Liberals are now progressives. Abortion is now reproduction rights. It's a version of what one wag said about the Soviet Union -- "The future is known, it is the past that is always changing."
While we contemplate a Hillary! or Obamessiah presidency, let's not forget what a Prophet Gore would do to the remaining American elements of American society and culture.
March 29, 2008
On the road ...
... yesterday was travel day as went from So Cal to the Bay Area. We're picking up #4 from college then heading to the Sacramento area to attend the wedding of #3's best friend from high school. #3 is maid of honor and it promises to be a wonderful event filled with romance, laughter and not a few happy tears.
March 27, 2008
The consummate actor's actor has died at age 93.
A veteran of more than 70 films, Mr. Widmark showed enormous range: strong military men ("Halls of Montezuma," "The Bedford Incident"), obsessed detectives ("Madigan"), Western heroes ("The Alamo") and insolent underworld figures, notably his explosive debut as a cold-blooded killer in 1947's "Kiss of Death."I've seem most of his films, but I remember most was the film The Long Ships. I was about ten when I saw it, from the backseat of my parents' car at the drive-in. I was enthralled.
RIP Mr. Widmark.
March 24, 2008
All brand, no nutrition - update
Obama badmouths NAFTA while one of his aids whispers to concerned Canadians "don't worry, he doesn't really mean it.".* Obama claims to be pro-Israel, but his friend over at "Electronic Intifada" believes it's just a repeat of his 2004 Senate run when Obama had to placate Jooooos to win -- he assured Ali Abunimah
"Hey, I’m sorry I haven’t said more about Palestine right now, but we are in a tough primary race. I’m hoping when things calm down I can be more up front.”
Obama's speech on race was supposed to "open a dialogue" but its false moral equivalency of his maternal grandmother to Rev. Wright and assertions of the "stain of original sin of slavery" was more demagoguery than dialogue. Obama continues to claim to be a unifier, with no actual history of being one. He waves off such criticism by saying
[A]s president, I would be setting the terms of debate.
Obama claims to be a "pragmatic progressive", but his supporters
say he is ready for a new, self-assured era in which progressives (few have returned to using the word “liberal”) make no apologies about their goals — universal health care, withdrawing troops from Iraq, ending tax breaks for more affluent Americans.
What has Obama done to earn any voter's trust?
UPDATE* there seems to be some controversy over just what was said when an Obama staffer,
met with Austan Goolsbee, [met with] the Canadian Consulate General**. It is interesting to note that the Obama camp at first refused to answer questions, then denied the meeting ever took place, then confessed, yes a meeting took place but nothing of the sort was said. However, the original story dealt with a phone call to the Canadian ambassador, something that the Obama camp still denies and that "Sources at the highest levels of the Canadian government -- who first told CTV that a call was made from the Obama camp -- have reconfirmed their position." Regardless of the Clinton camp's exploitation of this issue, they didn't make it up.
And certainly, Obama's ties to the Electronic Intifada are much more troubling.
**corrected due to mispasting from original source
March 22, 2008
... or how I spent a Saturday afternoon
From our home to yours, Happy Easter.
Barry Obama - "Personal Jesus" -- UPDATED
Please note carefully the quote at the end of this video. It helps explain the Obamessiah movement (and a quote I've used on occassion)
(h/t Dan Collins @ PW)
Here's another one:
March 19, 2008
Barry's speech shows
... he's just a run-of-the-mill Chicago machine politician
Did I know him to be an occasionally fierce critic of American domestic and foreign policy? Of course. Did I ever hear him make remarks that could be considered controversial while I sat in church? Yes.Wasn't it just a week or so ago that Barry was claiming he never heard any of Rev. Wright's [ahem] controversial remarks?
Yeah. Thought so.
Most of the speech reads like that.
March 18, 2008
Barry Poppins prepares for today's speech
If there are any doubts on how Mr. Hopey-changy will be approaching the cocklebur of Pastor Wright's unfortunate turns of phrase, rest assured the practically perfectly post-racialist will not permit sentiment to muddle his candidacy.
“I think it would have been naive for me to think I could run and end up with quasi-front-runner status in a presidential election as potentially the first African-American president, that issues [of] race wouldn’t come up, any more than Sen. Clinton could expect that gender issues might not come up,” Obama told interviewer Gwen Ifill on PBS’s “NewsHour With Jim Lehrer.”
“I think we’ve got to talk about it,” he added. “I think we’ve got to process it. But we’ve got to remind ourselves that what we have in common is far more important than what’s different and that if we’re going to solve any of these problems, we’ve got to come together and bridge our differences in ways that we just have not bridged them before.” [...]
"To the extent that, you know, the conversation over the last couple of days has been dominated by some stupid statements that were made by Rev. Wright, but also caricatures of Rev. Wright and Trinity United Church of Christ — which, by the way, is part of a denomination that is overwhelmingly white — you know, I think that that has distracted us from the possibilities of moving beyond some of these arguments,” Obama said. [...]
“I think that, you know, when you look at somebody like a Rev. Wright who grew up in the ’50s or ’60s, his experience of race in this country is very different than mine,” Obama told Ifill. “Now, we benefit from that past. We benefit from the difficult battles that were taking place. But I’m not sure that we benefit from continuing to perpetuate the anger and the bitterness that I think, at this point, serves to divide rather than bring us together. And that’s part of what this campaign has been about, is to say, ‘Let’s acknowledge a difficult history, but let’s move forward in a practical way to get things done.’”
March 17, 2008
The politics and profit of "hate"
I'm a registered Republican, but not a party activist. I have never joined or been part of any political or partisan issue group. I have tended to join groups or organizations based on interests - Girl Scouts, PTA, high school booster clubs - but getting involved with formal "issue" groups is something I've tended to avoid. Part of the problem I have with many of these kind of groups is that once the issue is resolved, or contained, the group often goes "searching" for related issues. Indeed, such groups tend to invent new problems, or inflate frivolous ones, in order to survive. We've witnessed this with all sorts of issues - feminists, affirmative action, gay rights - what starts out as a honorable gathering of people looking to address serious instances of ignored discrimination, assault and constitutional rights, eventually devolves into groups of radicalized, organized, "true believers" - people who tend to view the lack of evidence as proof of a conspiracy to Hide Teh Truth!!!1! or radicalized, highly partisan groups who deny their political agendas. This is no more evident than in the recent release of an alleged study, "The Year in Hate" by the Southern Poverty Law Center, that not only claims a "48% increase since 2000" in the number of "hate groups" in the United States but also claims that there was --
a 35% rise in hate crimes against Latinos between 2003 and 2006. Experts believe that such crimes are typically carried out by people who think they are attacking immigrants.
Ah, those nebulous and always convenient "experts". Now why would I be bothering with SPLC, usually referred to as a "civil rights organization", or a mere "watchdog group" by such as the equally neutral Associated Press? Well, it seems the SPLC has raised the ante in the calumny sweepstakes by listing the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) on its "Hate Group List" which includes obvious, and odious, hate groups as the KKK, Aryan Nations, and skinhead groups.
What did FAIR do to make the SPLC list it?
The growth of these [anti-Latino racist] groups is being helped by conspiracy theories and other racist propaganda about immigrants that is being spread by mainstream politicians and pundits. While theories about a secret plan to merge Mexico, Canada and United States into a single country began in radical groups, for instance, many key figures have endorsed them. Indeed, 18 states' houses of representatives have now passed resolutions opposing the "North American Union" — an entity that does not exist and has never been planned, but nonetheless inhabits nativists' nightmares.
Promoting such theories, coupled with a history of ties to white supremacist groups and ideology, is what caused the Southern Poverty Law Center to add a major anti-immigration group, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), to its list of hate groups last year. FAIR has also promulgated the theory that Mexico is involved in a secret plot to "reconquer" the American Southwest.
Perusing FAIR's site, I found nothing to support SPLC's accusations against FAIR. Even the AP had to admit
FAIR, which is frequently quoted by the media and whose officials often have testified before Congress, advocates an end to illegal immigration and tighter controls on legal immigration. In pursuing these goals, it says, "there should be no favoritism toward or discrimination against any person on the basis of race, color, or creed."
The law center said its decision to designate FAIR a hate group was based in part on the ideology of various people who established it, worked for it or donated to it over its nearly 30-year history. The center has issued a detailed report outlining its allegations, although little of that report deals with FAIR's recent activities.
So why the "hate" listing and why now?
Going back to the SPLC and looking at their "Hate Map" I noticed something by its absence. No radical Left "hate" group.
Now the SPLC site claims
All hate groups have beliefs or practices that attack or malign an entire class of people, typically for their immutable characteristics.
Hate group activities can include criminal acts, marches, rallies, speeches, meetings, leafleting or publishing.
Again, why FAIR? What "immutable" characteristic of an entire class of people do they attack or malign? What makes FAIR "nativist", as SPLC appears to label anyone that criticizes illegal immigration?
It is to be noted that the SPLC makes pains to never use the word "illegal" coupled with "immigrant". Indeed, in the SPLC's own words
it is not that easy to pick out an "illegal alien." Even the phrase lacks definition.
I don't know but I believe I can come up with a much more precise definition of "illegal alien" than the SPLC does of what a "hate group" is.
The list of California's "hate groups" is long, majority "white supremacist" with a token "black separatist" and one Hispanic "general hate" group. Again, it is interesting to note SPLC's apologia regarding "black separatists"
Although the Southern Poverty Law Center recognizes that much black racism in America is, at least in part, a response to centuries of white racism,
and dismissal as "no big deal" where it concerns the vicious La Voz de Aztlan
a tiny extremist Chicano group based out of Los Angeles,
No listing for Mexicana Movement, La Raza (the Race), MeCHA, Brown Berets, CodePink, or ANSWER. For SPLC radical Left "hate groups" don't make the map. Nor is there even any mention of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) whose founders come from Hamas and who have ties with the Muslim Brotherhood. Certainly CAIR's problematic associations are far more serious than those alleged in FAIR's case.
But that wouldn't fit SPLC's "hate" agenda. "Hate" -- not as a widely accepted, specifically defined, term to help inform people about problematic organizations, but "hate" as a cynical tool of brown-shirt politics. "Hate" as a means of slandering one's political opponents thereby never having to engage them in substansive or good faith debate.
What SPLC fails to see in its rush to demonize any whisper of the negative impact of illegal immigration is that diluting "hate" to such a degree is a gift to groups like the KKK. Because, like the inflation of the word "rape" to mean any sexual contact one regrets the next day has desensitized people to the true horror of actual rape, so the inflation of the word "hate" to include people who want federal law enforced as currently written will make people desensitized to any real hate group without obvious historical ties to the KKK or neo-Nazis.
SPLC has gone the way of the ACLU, once an honorable organization now merely a radical, partisan bully more interested in headlines and donations than the justice it professes to promote.
March 13, 2008
Wherein I cannot find anything clever to say ...
or come up with a pithy Photoshop. How could I take credit for discovering a hidden Democrat agenda, to destroy the American economy and impoverish taxpayers when they are quite gleefully declaring it right out in the open?.
The Senate was debating and voting into the night on a $3 trillion Democratic budget blueprint for 2009. The nonbinding plan envisions a balanced budget in four years and promises generous increases for many domestic programs, but achieves those goals only by assuming major tax increases when Bush's tax cuts expire.Obama and Clinton both promise to reverse Bush's tax cuts for wealthier taxpayers, but the Democratic budget they'll be voting for would allow income tax rates to go up on individuals making as little as $31,850 and couples earning $63,700 or more. [...]
Democrats in the House and Senate are divided on taxes. The House budget plan assumes elimination of the full roster of Bush tax cuts.
In the Senate, however, Democrats offered an amendment to renew tax cuts including the 10 percent tax bracket on the first $7,825 of income for individuals, the $1,000 per child tax credit, and estate tax relief.
Read that again, closely. The House's bloodsucking plan is to replace the 10 percent bracket with the 15 percent bracket and eliminate the child tax credit. Just which filthy rich running dog capitalists is that targeting?
Somewhere, Michelle Obama is smiling quietly in anticipation of her Madame Defarge role.
Under both Democratic plans, tax rates would increase by 3 percentage points for each of the 25 percent, 28 percent and 33 percent brackets. At present, the 25 percent bracket begins at $31,850 for individuals and $63,700 for married couples. The 35 percent bracket on incomes over $349,700 would jump to 39.6 percent.
After punishing people for having the audicity to hope to work hard and earn a home without an Uncle Rezko, or trying to fulfill the dreams of our fathers to own our own businesses, Obamessiah will break out the government supplied Universal Fishes and Loaves and tell us to be satisfied He allows us that much.
March 07, 2008
Teacher Union Thugs
Also, California's 2nd District Court of Appeals (covering several So California counties) took the opportunity of using a narrow child welfare case to opine that parents have no constitutional right to home school.
All your childrens belong us!
March 06, 2008
Head cold. I've been pushing the Vitamin C for the last couple of days, being good about exercise and rest but the cold has won.
March 03, 2008
More Obama cult of personality
March 02, 2008
Thou shalt have none other candidates before Me
It's Sunday, do you know where your lord Obama is?
The salacious assassination p0rn around Obamessiah still pops up, as Karl notes. The Obamagod portion of the trinity is being protected by a wider wedge of the faithful who are deciding what will or will not be acceptable campaigning against Obamagod, while He remains above the fray. Howard Kurtz asks
Is Barack Obama protected by a special suit of armor--one that fits only African Americans?Obviously, anyone running against the first black candidate with a serious shot at the presidency has to be sensitive about racial slights, real or perceived.
While Ben Smith points out how Obamagod works this to his advantage
And the dynamic of outrage and offense this campaign has proved race to be a much touchier subject than gender. At times, Obama’s campaign has sought to downplay burgeoning outrage. At others, the candidate has stoked it for political advantage.But most of the flaps ended the same way: with Obama forgiving the alleged offender. Sometimes he’s accepted the apologies graciously, sometimes sternly, but always in line with his message. And that message of reconciliation — often explicitly racial reconciliation — is a central part of his campaign’s appeal. With a general election that appears likely to open him to more Republican attacks, and more line-crossing, the campaign ritual of offense and forgiveness appears likely to be repeated often this year. [...]
“There is no better way to appear magnanimous and above the fray than in gracefully accepting an apology,” said Chris Lehane, a California political consultant who supports Clinton. [...]
“It's simple. He's Teflon,” said Jim Jordan, a Democratic consultant who worked for the campaign of Sen. Chris Dodd.
At the faithful level, the pre-emptive strategy is to demonize Republicans even before the general election
Right now, deep in the GOP dungeons, they're planning their racist, disgraceful assault.
The true difficulty facing the GOP's henchmen in the coming months will be how to get those who are just a tiny bit smarter, calmer, less easily swayed, those on the right who might actually be a bit impressed and charmed by Obama's obvious intelligence and oratory power, to hate him, fear him, find his genuinely moving brand of hope and inspiration to be suspicious and problematic and even deeply dangerous. [...]
When they stole two elections for Bush, the brutal, homophobic conservative machine was tightly organized, had focus, mountains of cash, Karl Rove, the backing of a very nefarious, deeply inbred team of ultra-wealthy war hawks hell-bent on taking over the nation and ruling with a flaccid peni- ... er, iron fist.
This is not just the province of politics, but potential Obama blasphemy is being challenged in pop culture
Is Fred Armisen, who is not African American, "black enough" to embody Obama on "Saturday Night Live"?
Maureen Ryan of the Chicago Tribune put the question bluntly: "Call me crazy, but shouldn't 'Saturday Night Live's' fictional Sen. Barack Obama be played by an African American?" Ryan went on to conclude: "I find 'SNL's' choice inexplicable. Obama's candidacy gives us solid proof of the progress that African Americans have made in this country. I guess 'SNL' still has further to go on that front."
Hannah Pool, a writer for the Guardian newspaper in Great Britain, suggested the whole setup had "minstrel" overtones.
"Casting a black actor wouldn't have guaranteed the quality of the sketch, but it would have made the whole thing a lot less shoddy," Pool wrote. "Let's get one thing straight. The moment anyone starts reaching for 'blackface,' they are on extremely dodgy territory. Anyone who thinks it's either necessary or, for that matter, remotely funny to black-up needs to have the gauge on their moral compass reset."
Todd Boyd, a professor of critical studies at the University of Southern California, at the end of the article states:
"[W]hen you have a figure as historically important as Barack Obama ... people can get mighty protective of his image."
Ah, Obama's image. Much like the Danish cartoon flap, mocking, parodying or criticizing Obama's image Will Have Consequences!
It's a long road to November and it will be interesting to see how much political opposition to, or even doubt of, His Holiness will be dismissed as "unacceptable."
March 01, 2008
How NOT to talk to a judge