Saturday, September 29, 2012

Mark Steyn: Obama a better president of the future

Mark Steyn: Obama a better president of the future | future, belong, obama - Opinion - The Orange County Register

In this article in the OCR, Steyn riffs on the notion of President Obama as being so enraptured of the Golden Future, that present necessity quite escapes his notice.  It's smashingly witty, as all Steyn's stuff is, but it put me in mind of this old Belmont Club post by Richard Fernandez, under his old nom de blogue Wretchard.  It seemed to me amazingly perceptive at the time, and still does, and so I once again offer these extracts:

[The Internationale] set the theme which was to endure for more than a hundred years: that the familiar world is not worth fighting for. Only the unseen tomorrow gives life any meaning. ... From its earliest inception, the Left cried that the world was not good enough. It held that any attempts to find happiness in the present were not only doomed, but immoral. ... What they forgot to add was that the world would never be good enough. That not a single Marxist state ever managed to provide either the food or electricity in adequate quantities remained beside the point. Shortages were always in the present and the present was unimportant anyway. When capitalism provided wealth in quantities that Lenin could only dream of, then food and electricity themselves became hated in turn, the way starvation once was. ... 
Lenin's future was attractive only for so long as it didn't exist and was legitimate only when its promises were not provided by capitalism. John Buchan could tell his son, when he wrote "Memory Hold The Door", which described friends who died in the Great War, that "they held up the world for you". But a true Leftist could only ever dream of boasting to his progeny that 'I tore down the world for you'. ...

Friday, September 28, 2012

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Fatwa on the permissibility of killing of American ambassadors

At the invaluable Jihadica blog, Joas Wagemakers parses a fatwa by an imam named Abu l-Mundhir al-Shinqiti. He does a fine job of explaining the "reasoning" behind the statement, but it boils down to this:

“Killing all American ambassadors and destroying all American embassies won’t quench our thirst for those who have attacked the sanctity of our Prophet”, al-Shinqiti states. Muslims should therefore not show sympathy for the American ambassador and the other diplomats killed in Libya, as many did, and neither should they call for non-violence, as other Muslim scholars have done. Instead, al-Shinqiti insists, the proper response to the film is “to attack [American] interests, to attack their security, to attack their existence and to attack their economy because this is the language they understand”.

It's only one fatwa by one person, of course. But the justification is out there, for jihadists needing any further goad.

Andy Williams RIP - Moon River 1960's performance

Used to enjoy his show, growing up...RIP...& thanks for the memories...

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Tuesday Night ADHD Linklets

World War II commando finally gets his Bronze Star

Track your very own great white shark from your computer.

Fun with Google, for lovers of serendipity: Go to Google Images search, and type in the year of your birth (or marriage, or graduation). Then type in the county (or province) you were born or raised in. Then see if there are any interesting pictures in the results. This one came up in my results--although I'm not from there, and I'm not that old!

New Evidence of Neolithic Dentistry

Previously undiscovered Edward Hopper painting surfaces

World's first color movie reconstructed. Tykes look like they could have been filmed yesterday.

A recording of William Jennings Bryan denouncing corporate financing of elections--100 years ago.

One of my recent Motifakes.

Nigeria: Catholic cathedral in Bauchi bombed in second attack on Christians in the space of a week. And the U.S. MSM would report it, if only there were Christians fighting back. Then they could avoid judgements and just report a "cycle of violence".

Did dinosaurs swim?

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Should we have the right to disobey Islamic law?

Over at Hot Air, Laura Curtis is dismayed to ponder that it has lately become an open question.

Liberals don’t care about protecting the tender feelings of the religious, as evidenced by decades of offenses against Christians and every other faith. They are simply afraid of a group who is willing to kill because they’re offended. And what liberals are really saying, if they were honest, is that we have a moral obligation to obey Islamic law in order to prevent more bloodshed.

They are saying that non-Muslims, living in non-Muslim countries, should voluntarily adhere to Muslim law.

These same people who scream like a goth in the sun at the sight of a nativity scene on public property, are suggesting that non-Muslim governments should use their non-Muslim citizens’ tax dollars to enforce Islamic blasphemy laws.

That’s insane.

I would only object that libs are afraid of more than being killed by RoPers, although that's in the back of everyone's mind. They are also afraid, and possibly more consciously afraid, of having their heads explode figuratively as well as literally. That is, they are loathe to undergo the painful self-examination that might disabuse them of their treasured fixations: To be brown foreign and angry at America is to be right by definition, the straight white male conservative taxpayer is the root of all evil, America deserves every terrorist attack that happens, and so forth. To abandon these notions, and actually take the side of the United States against a foreign enemy--hell, to even acknowledge that in the hippy-dippy happy-clappy multi-culti world of their imagination we even have enemies--would cause too much psychic indigestion for them to bear.

Conservatives are more charitable than liberals

Over at Chicago Boyz, Shannon Love takes another look at the 2007 book Who Really Cares, which marshals facts and figures to show that conservatives give more to charity than liberals do.

It has always been a great puzzle to Leftists why their compassionate programs don’t seem to transform the poor into paragons of virtue. Perhaps it has something to do with welfare subsidizing irresponsible, self-destructive behaviors while at the same Leftists telling the poor that nothing in their lives is their fault and by extension nothing that happens to them is under their control. Leftists’ rationales for welfare create recipients who exhibit a dangerous mix of feeling helpless combined with a profound sense of entitlement. The working poor know better. The school of hard knocks is the best teacher.

Of particular interest to me is that Brooks carefully controls for all variables that might skew the relationship between religion, politics and giving. For example, by reflex Leftists claim that Brooks is counting Religious-Conservatives’ tithes to churches which Leftists argue is more akin to paying country club dues than charity. Nope, he corrected for that. Religious-Conservatives still give a higher percentage of their time and money to purely secular charities.

Brooks also accounts for race, ethnicity, and any other factor you could think of. It all comes out the same. Secular-Leftists fall far short of Religious-Conservatives when it comes to donating their own time and money to help others.

As for the church tithes, many of those, in mainstream denominations at least, go to the churches' well-run disaster relief organizations. Check my link farm to the right and click through to sites like UMCOR and Mennonite Disaster Service, for instance. The next time I see the Bertrand Russell Society out helping tornado victims will be the first time.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Libyan crowd was trying to save Ambassador Stevens

I thought so when I saw those photos. But here's confirmation, via Michael Totten.

Video taken by al-Bakoush and posted on YouTube shows Stevens being carried out of a dark room through a window with a raised shutter by a crowd of men. “The man is alive. Move out of the way,” others shout. “Just bring him out, man.”

“Move, move, he is still alive!”

“Alive, Alive! God is great,” the crowd erupts, while someone calls to take Stevens to a car.

This restores my faith in human nature, to a degree visible to the naked eye. It would just curdle my soul, not for the first time these past eleven years, to think of Muslim mobs exulting over the corpses of Americans who came to help them. So, Libya stays in the Good column, for now. They've got a steep slog ahead of them though, trying to stay out of Al Qaeda Maghreb's clutches while trying to build a civic society from scratch. If they succeed, that'll be one good legacy of Ambassador Stevens' work there.

Romney gaffe?

No. It's just that awkward feeling that descends, when a politician inadvertently tells the truth about something, especially about the public. That's what's getting everyone's hackles up.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Rick Santorum: "Smart People Will Never Be on Our Side"

Rick Santorum: "Smart People Will Never Be on Our Side"

Over at LGF, Charles Johnson pounces on what he takes to be a self-damning gaffe by Rick Santorum.  But it's obvious to most, and if there had been video included it would be obvious to all--that Santorum was speaking derisively of progressives' image of themselves.  To imagine oneself to be a lone, desperate voice of sanity, crying out in the midst of a world of unthinking knuckle-draggers, is not without its appeal, to certain personalities. Yes, the "values" set-list gets to seem like a distraction, frequently. But without a sub-set of the population with a firm grounding in morals and liberty, smart people may become misled into thinking that this is a good idea:

And we sure wouldn't want that to happen, now would we?

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Enforcing Islamic Blasphemy Laws in California.

Go read Reynolds. Now.

When taking office, the President does not swear to create jobs. He does not swear to “grow the economy.” He does not swear to institute “fairness.” The only oath the President takes is this one:

"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

By sending — literally — brownshirted enforcers to engage in — literally — a midnight knock at the door of a man for the non-crime of embarrassing the President of the United States and his administration, President Obama violated that oath. You can try to pretty this up (It’s just about possible probation violations! Sure.), or make excuses or draw distinctions, but that’s what’s happened. It is a betrayal of his duties as President, and a disgrace.
-- Glenn Reynolds, Why Barack Obama Should Resign

Enforcing sharia anti-blasphemy laws in California? I'm tempted to curse my eyes, for allowing me to see this sight in my own, my own, my own native country.

Mitt Romney Rap

So, have you seen an anti-Mitt Romney rap delivered by a WWII Flying Fortress veteran today? Yes? Well, this one's cooler! This dude's 87, and I don't even care about his political opinion. I just hope I'm that lively and adventurous at his age--heck, I hope I'm that way if I get to within twenty years of his age!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

DNC apology for backdrop of Russian ships - Navy News | News from Afghanistan & Iraq - Navy Times

DNC apology for backdrop of Russian ships - Navy News | News from Afghanistan & Iraq - Navy Times

Very embarrassing.  Their graphic arts supplier must not be used to military themes, or else doesn't bother to pay close attention to what Google Images brings up in a search.  Thank goodness this didn't happen during the Cold War, or the Dem candidate would have been sunk.  "Sunk", ha!  See what I did there?

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

9/11 did not change me

Over at PJMedia Lifestyle, Dave Swindle asks how 9/11 changed you. My answer, also to be found in the comments there, is that it didn't:

9/11 did not change me politically. I had long been alternately skeptical of and disgusted with the Western Left, ever since I absorbed Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s The Gulag Archipelago one summer in high school. And I had long followed the dreary litany of Islamic terrorism, bombings and hijackings, from the 70s onwards. When 9/11 happened, I knew before hearing any announcement that it was probably Osama bin Laden, because he was responsible for the attacks on the U. S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. I had visited Kenya before, and loved the warm friendly people there, so that attack was doubly atrocious to me. On 9/11, watching Muslims party in the streets, and proggs exclaim “How terrible! But…” simply confirmed me more solidly in my opinions. I will never forget or forgive the jihadists, nor how proggs insinuated--or proclaimed--that America deserved 9/11. I've made it a rule to reject with great force the national security advice of such people in the years since.

Sunday, September 09, 2012

DRIVING MRS. SATAN - Never say die - Black sabbath cover

Have you heard an exceptionally lovely acoustic rearrangment of an especially lethal metal song today?  Yes?  Well, this one's better!

02 Take your Hand Out of My Pocket Van Morrison At The Rainbow Theatre

This is what conservatives are saying to Sandra Fluke, and indeed to all proggs.  (Double-posted because I decided I liked Van Morrison's version better.)

Sonny Boy Williamson II Take Your Hands Out Of My Pockets

This is what conservatives are saying to Sandra Fluke.  What she does with her body is of no concern to me, otherwise.

The MEMRI 9/11 Project

Since September 11, 2001, The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) has been following, and documenting, content from the Middle East and South Asia media on the attacks of that day. Many of the initial reactions in these media – from prominent journalists, academics, politicians, and leading religious figures, as well as from officials in the governments of Arab countries – centered on conspiracy theories implicating the Jews, Israel and/or the Mossad; President Bush, Vice President Cheney, the CIA, the FBI, and/or the National Security Council; Christians and/or the Vatican; the U.K.; white supremacist groups; and others.
To visit the MEMRI 9/11 page, click here.

Saturday, September 08, 2012

Voter fraud? Yes, and at their own convention!

"Even though the no's were again as loud if not louder than the aye's on the third vote, Villaraigosa said he had determined that two thirds of those present had voted in favor. Boos filled the arena in response."

Now tell us again how there is no Democrat voter fraud in this country.

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Late night ADHD linklets

"The Navy SEAL Foundation says it will not accept any donations generated by the memoir, "No Easy Day," which the Pentagon says likely contains classified information that could put military personnel at risk."

Southern schools dominate list of best colleges for free speech.

Archeologists from the University of Leicester have found the long-lost Church of the Grey Friars – the last known resting place of Richard III.

"Creationism has no predictive ability or qualities, so it is not scientifically useful. Evolution allows us to understand how living things came to be as we see them today and as they were in both the distant and recent past. It allows us to predict the fate and behavior of populations,"

Paleoart: The prehistoric world's most epic predators

Are dinosaurs still cool?

The center of our galaxy has a pigtail.

Christians attacked in Kenya, in India, in Egypt

Did they really discover the Higgs boson?

Random Rock Bloggage

So I see in the entertainment news that Billy Corgan of Smashing Pumpkins is slagging fellow 90s rockers Soundgarden, for hitting the revival road only for the money. I don't know much about 90s rock, I admit. The stuff was mostly one long expectoration to my classic rock ears, at the time. But does Mr. Corgan truly not realize how limited a shelf life most bands have? Or how shallow a creative well? Ancient bands like The Who or The Rolling Stones can still sell out big halls, if not arenas. But probably there's barely one fan in a hundred who came to hear their latest songs. People want to hear music that made impressions on them, at the most impressionable, memorable times of their youths. Time boils all artists down to their essentials, and these endure. Bands that don't have any essentials just effervesce down to nothing. Who listens to The Critters, The Shadows, Black Pearl, Bloodrock, anymore? If a band has achieved something that endures, that deserves to be celebrated--and rewarded.

And what's wrong with money? Is there some rock music rule that you have to spend your career living in a van, with no prospects beyond the next gig or studio date? Rock's promise of eternal youth was exploded long ago--let rockers be adults!

Sunday, September 02, 2012

Pakistan is "decaying"

This brave article deserves wide exposure. Unfortunately, posting a link on my blog is the best I can do.

A decaying state kills its minorities

Most Muslims hold that violation of some human rights takes place because of the tough living conditions and poverty in the country. The view displays all the collective blind spots about human rights. It presumes certain conditions to exist against objective evidence to the contrary. It talks about the minorities in Pakistan without being aware of their view of how they are being treated. Under the present PPP government a Christian federal minister has been killed by Punjabi Taliban in broad daylight in Islamabad.

Today in 2012, you have TV anchors saying more or less the same thing: Muslims themselves are being maltreated, so the persecution of non-Muslims cannot be blamed on them. Going on a tangent, they allude to the Rohingya Muslims of Burma about whom the rascally foreign-funded NGOs have done nothing. (In Burma, the NGOs protesting Rohingya rights are savagely suppressed by the Burmese ruling junta.) The ominous sign in Pakistan is that the majority Muslim community is completely inured against what the minorities are going through.

Remember, you can go to Google's news aggregator and search keywords Christians Attacked, no quotation marks. A theme will emerge...

Chris Matthews is losing credibility on race

Yes, even in 2012, there is still a lot of hatefulness out there. But, as has been said elseweb, if you're constantly hearing "dog whistles", that chiefly means that you're the dog.