Saturday, July 17, 2004

Goodbye yellow brick road

Elton John joins the list of mindless celebrities who apparently studied neither economics nor civics. Likening the current "fear factor" in America to "McCarthyism", he says entertainers could be "frightened by the current administration's bullying tactics".

The administration? Bullying tactics? He explains, "...the Dixie Chicks got shot down in flames last year for criticizing the president." They were criticized as being un-American, he says. True enough, I recall. Big backlash.

But, does anyone recall flames or gunfire in relation to the Dixie Chicks last year? Any actual, official prohibition to perform? There was some mutter of concert and record boycotts, and a few radio stations arranged some CD-crushing stunts, but it seems their US concert tour was pretty much sold out anyway. At least I didn't hear of any cancellations.

Maybe record sales were down a bit, I'm not sure. But here's a tip for Elton and all those "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds"-impeded celebs — the government wasn't responsible for buying their recordings and concert tickets to begin with. That's the job of the competitive market.

Elton, here's how it works: You, the entertainer, produce a record. We, the consumers, buy it. If we like it. And if you don't first piss us off in some other, non-entertainment related way. Like embarrassing yourself by engaging in political punditry, the practice at which you are obviously inept.

As you say, "As of this spring, there have been virtually no anti-war concerts - or anti-war songs that catch on, for that matter". That pretty much sums up the situation, doesn't it? They don't catch on. All John Ashcroft's fault, right? The Patriotism Act requires that we officially hate you.

Yes, we all have first amendment rights in this country. But those rights cut both ways. We the consuming public are under no obligation whatsoever to underwrite your idiotic blathering. Get it? If you don't like being criticized, then shut the hell up. Simple, eh?

Your choice though. You can prattle on all you like, because I, for one, really don't want to censor you. I would much prefer to know with whom we are dealing.

So go one, tell us about the view through those rose-colored glasses, Rocket Man.

Rocking the vote-rockers

I love these guys. I saw their videos a couple of months ago, meant to write an article on them but I guess I got sidetracked. I was reminded when I saw a blurb on Foxnews this morning, so I mention them now.

Anti-anti-war protestors. Conservatives infiltrating those International ANSWER street marches and giving the leftists a dose of their own medicine. Secret taping of planning meetings. Street confrontations. Great signs and slogans. Fun, fun, fun.

Check out the videos.

Example after example of how the Left cannot deal with facts. Confrontations typically end with some flake yelling "fascist" or "racist" or something equally pointless.

I'm not exactly sure how much impact they have on public perception, but their efforts sure can't hurt. Most important, it establishes that conservatives can in fact challenge the Left with their own techniques. The signs! Side-splitting stuff. At first glance, they seem to be conventional anti-war slogans. Then watch peoples' faces as they read the actual text and slowly dawns on them they have been "had".

Also, the high school kid that decided to fight back in his own school. Calm, steady reason was his strategy and it worked. Admirable.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Disassembling dissembling

We know about the web they weave, and how it came to be, but can it be unwoven?

Now that the honorable Joe Wilson has been thoroughly debunked by the 911 Commission,  it possible to repair the damage he did to this nation? The famous sixteen words created such a furor, can we ever recover the proper emotional impact they were intended to convey?

I've said it before, about truth and its conveyance:

  • It ain't necessarily so.
  • Say it long enough and loud enough, and people will tend to believe.
So President Bush uttered a simple truth in sixteen words. "The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa."

Then all hell broke loose.

The Left made this statement the centerpiece of their objection to the war in Iraq, although the Bush administration had much more justification beyond the uranium issue — in fact, the assertion was only that Iraq had "sought" uranium, not that such a deal was ever concluded. And the Left's objection was that the CIA had reservations about the story. Not that the CIA knew the story to be false, only that they were skeptical. So, President Bush quoted the British government, who were more confident of their sources.

Why would the CIA and British Intelligence disagree? Well, for one, the United States had systematically gutted its human intelligence capabilities over a couple of decades. Stemming  from the infamous Church Committee back in the post-Vietnam seventies, our government developed an irrational aversion to the nasty but necessary business of gathering reliable intelligence. More recently, we significantly cut CIA funding. Worse, we put restrictions on the sort of spies the CIA might recruit, thereby devastating our human intelligence capabilities.

The United Kingdom made no such foolish, self-flagellating moves. Their intelligence capabilities were undamaged by the idiotic self-loathing guilt of people like Senator Carl Levin and his ilk. So, we decided to use their intelligence rather than our own. Smart move by President Bush, but the sixteen words provided just the window the anti-war movement was looking for. It gave them another opportunity to claim, however falsely, "Bush lied!"

And Joe Wilson led the charge. He did his best to discredit President Bush in the most partisan, vile manner thinkable. And in the process he himself lied, more than once.

And the press followed him all the way, fanning the flames of anti-war and anti-American sentiment, whose effects echoed around the world and did untold damage to our efforts. How many lives were lost because of the anti-American rhetoric spewed by the likes of Joe Wilson, Carl Levin, Joe Biden, Terry McAuliffe, Jay Rockefeller, John Kerry, Michael Moore, Al Gore, and so many others?

I'll skip the details of Joe Wilson's campaign of dissembly, all covered elsewhere in immaculate detail.

The bottom line of the 911 Commission's finding is this: "We conclude also that the statement in President Bush's State of the Union Address of 28 January 2003 that 'The British Government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa' was well-founded."

Well-founded. All sixteen words, count 'em.

The Left put those sixteen words at the center of their case against the war. They asserted this statement was emotionally charged and designed to sway the American people to favour the war. Ignore the fact that justifications were manifold for a moment, just think of the  anti-Americans' assertion here. The basis of this war was a lie. Had that lie been true, the war would be justified. After all, without actual stockpiles of WMD, we still had cause to take out Saddam Hussein because he was actively pursuing WMD. Uranium from west Africa, not black-eyed peas. So, the hate-America crowd did their level best to make these sixteen words seem a lie.

But the sixteen-word statement was not a lie. Saddam Hussein indeed attempted to obtain uranium from Niger, just as British Intelligence — even French Intelligence — had told us.

Now, turn the clock back to March 2003 and move forward in time. We have been told we are going to war because Saddam had weapons and was seeking more. We took three weeks and wiped out his army and his government. Then the anti-war forces spend the next year or so struggling to derail our efforts. How many of our troops, and Iraqi civilians died because we couldn't get more assistance, more support? Because the insurgents were encouraged by Americans who hate America?

John Kerry and John Edwards both voted against the $87 billion in war funding because 'we knew the policy had to be changed'. Because "Bush lied". Only President Bush didn't lie. And Kerry was wrong. Carl Levin was wrong. Ted Kennedy was wrong. Biden, McAuliffe, the New York Times, Washington Post, Reuters, BBC — all wrong. Chirac was wrong. Europe was wrong. The Spanish electorate was wrong. Now the Philippines are wrong.

Can we ever undo the damage done by such malicious deceit? Will the press admit its mistake and tell the real story, on page one? Can we get a "do over"? A mulligan?

Will the American people wake up and realize they were indeed lied to — by the Democrats and their own home-town newspapers, not by President Bush?

We'll find out in November.

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

McAuliffe suddenly favors disclosure

As Drudge reported today, Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe demanded President Bush "...release the Cliffs Notes version of his intelligence briefing." in order to satisfy McAuliffe's assertion "...despite repeated warnings from the intelligence community, this President stubbornly went forward with his plans for war."

I think he thinks someone is hiding something. That someone is less than honest here. Hmm...

This is the same Terry McAuliffe who made millions from an "investment" in Global Crossing, which company later went infamously bust. The same Terry McAuliffe who wanted to blame Enron's failure on Republican's, but assured us his selling of shares immediately prior to Global Crossing's failure was just good business sense.

The same Terry McAuliffe who at that time said, "The people out there who are hurt the most are the small people, and once again the wealthy special interests got to take their money off the table, and that's what we need to investigate."

Not that there was anything of his to investigate. He just happened to play a round of golf at the right time, then got real lucky on the sale. It's really simple: you just start with $100,000, then sell at precisely the right time and you have $18,000,000.

The $1 million Global Crossing's founder donated to the Clinton Library is just a coincidence. And the $400 million Pentagon contract Global Crossing got from the Clinton administration is unrelated. And the fact that Global Crossing gave more to Democrats than Enron ever gave to Republicans is irrelevant.

I wonder if Terry McAuliffe still has his Cliffs Notes on Global Crossing.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Facing the Face

America slowly woke up from it's nap. After a long stretch and yawn, a furtive glance around the room confirmed this was not just a dream. Still there, Botox stood in the corner, droning lines from that Marxist poet, "The real America..."

It was obvious the Botox was wearing thin, you could see it in his Lurch-like furrows. That would turn off some voters, sure. No matter — a newer, prettier Face was offered up as his shadow. A youthful, talking Face, with all the shining words any weasel would be proud to utter. But, this one could do more than just talk: he was actually able to channel the spirits of the unborn. What a great show, worthy of any revival tent! He could tell us what the dear babies were feeling, thinking and hoping, who to blame for any mishap. How much the miscreant must pay. And it was always a big number. Big number... yeah, he's our boy!

But America was in no mood for this tripe. The fact is, the Face was already looking for a job. The home town folks clearly having signaled their rejection of this Elmer Gantry huckster, were prepared to reject him again. And his lack of substance, that moral core he abandoned on the courthouse steps. Yes, he was on the way out, at least from the big tent. Americans love to buy, but hate to be sold.

Oh, he will be okay. His act just doesn't scale well. He can convince any twelve at a time of any non-existent fact you care to cite. And channeling babies! Damn! Feed him the thought, he will sing the song. Any thought, any song.

He may not be able to convince America, but he can and did convince Botox and the cadre — the true believers in "the cause". So, crank up the volume. Let loose the dogs. Go offensive, stay offensive, never back down, never yield, not one single point! Sure, you can say "it ain't necessarily so", but equally true, "if you say it loud enough and long enough, people will believe anything".

But just in case, keep the lawyers handy.

Friday, July 09, 2004

Tom Daschle's physical graffiti

Tom Daschle denied hugging Michael Moore at the Washington premiere of Fahrenheit 9/11. Apparently this is a campaign issue in South Dakota. You see, it seems South Dakotans are actually fairly conservative. Yet, with the help of the local rag, Daschle has somehow fooled many South Dakotans into believing he is not a left-wing loon at all. "Ignore the man behind the curtain" implores the honorable fourth estate. Whatever.

But Michael Moore insists he got the hug. And who would ever call Michael Moore a prevaricator? Really, from the Democrats' reaction to F 9/11, Moore must be a shining beacon of truth in a conspiratorial world of right-wing lies. Leni Riefenstahl did not enjoy such support in her day.

So, who speaks the truth here? Was it maybe just a pat on the back, as opposed to a full-body grope? No, Daschle denies even meeting Moore that night, though Moore sat just a few rows behind. Despite Daschle's need to have it both ways, he's in a bit of a squeeze here, so to speak. And we really hate to see him in a political hot spot. He probably got sweaty enough from... oh, never mind.

Maybe Tom can say he saw Mike, and held up his hand as though to wave. And maybe that was mistaken for the intent of a hug. Yeah, something like that. But to just deny the affection altogether? With all the touchy-feely going on between Democrats these days, you would think their biggest concern would be having clean underwear.

C'mon, man. Where's the love?

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Good fences make good neighbors

Looks like the Hague-based International Court of Justice is going to rule on Israel's security fence tomorrow. Not surprisingly, they will rule the fence illegal. Their rationale? The court " not convinced that the specific course Israel has chosen for the wall was necessary to attain its security objectives."

The fence is not necessary?

Since construction of the Gaza version of the security fence, not one suicide bomber has infiltrated Israel. Moreover, where the disputed West Bank fence has been finished, suicide bombings have dropped off to practically nothing. In fact, the fence is so effective, in combination with a few well-placed helicopter rockets, the Intifada is pretty much over, and Israel won.

This is what, chopped liver?

The purpose of the fence is to protect Israeli citizens, 15% of whom are Arabs, by the way. The fence works. But this motive, and the obvious success of the fence hold no water for the IJC. A lone dissenting voice came from the American judge, Thomas Buerghenthal. Go figure.

The court will demand Israel not only tear down the fence, but pay Palestinians' reparations as well. Apparently the wall infringes on Palestinians freedom of movement, freedom to seek employment, education and health.

No mention was made of the health of 900 or more Israelis who have been murdered by Palestinians since the last Intifada began in 2000.

I guess they could always sue for reparations. It's the International Court of Justice, right?

Never censor the Left

Every time someone on the right criticizes a leftist, we hear cries of "censorship". As though criticism itself was a form of censorship. Recall Tim Robbins, speaking before the Press Club last year: "A chill wind is blowing in this nation."

The fact is, the more left-wing politicians speak, the better we understand them. We need to know precisely what is on their minds, the things they say only when they think the public is not listening. The more America knows about the Left, the better off we all will be.

Back in the sixties, the New Left took over the Democratic Party. Then, they were openly radical, since it was fashionable to be young and pissed off at the war in Vietnam. Now they have grown up and they cloak themselves as traditional members of "the establishment". But traditional they are not. Now they adopt the soft-spoken demeanor of Tom Daschle, to reassure us they are the mainstream, and the Republicans are right-wing radicals.

And they really do believe they are mainstream American. But they are not. Their mindless platitudes do not stand even cursory intellectual scrutiny, so they use emotional appeals and personal invective. Listen to what they say, and you will hear... nothing. No content. Tap on their arguments lightly and you will hear a hollow echo.

When you really listen to them, you still see loving admiration for Fidel Castro, for Daniel Ortega. A willing defense of Alger Hiss and the Rosenbergs. Forgiveness — no admiration for John Kerry's self-confession of war crimes. Street demonstrations by International ANSWER, of the stalinist World Workers Party, whose operations are sponsored by North Korea, are applauded, attended and supported by the Democrats.

The "core" of the Democratic Party — the group that runs the party — is far to the left. People for the American Way, the NEA, NOW, NARAL, the Rainbow Coalition. All left-wing constituencies that create the litmus tests every judicial appointee must pass in order to even get the Senate vote the Constitution guarantees.

Most traditional Democrats are not leftists at all. They register that way because their parents did, same as Republicans. But, the core of the Republican party is much closer to the political center than the Democrats. That is because Americans are basically conservative in nature. The values of the Republican Party are much more aligned with most Americans than the Democrats.

How can you tell? Listen to the Democrats. Who is speaking for them these days? George Soros. Michael Moore. Ted Rall. They won't disavow these shills, but only defend their "first amendment rights". When Ted Rall calls Condaleeza Rice the most foul name you can imagine, do Democrat leaders call for his banishment? No, they will remain silent.

When Michael Moore creates a "documentary" that makes him the new Leni Riefenstahl, is he condemned by the Left? No, he gets a standing ovation.

These people squarely represent the views of the Democratic Party leadership, make no mistake about it. Never shut up the Left. Never censor their views. The more we know about them, and where they really want to take this nation, the better off we all are.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

A chance to frame the debate

For a fleeting instant, John Kerry seemed to be having a moment of intellectual honesty. He said he believes life begins at conception. Wow! Now this may be obvious to most of us "little people", but for a Democratic presidential candidate such an admission is nothing less than earth-shattering.

But — there is always the but — "I can't take my Catholic belief, my article of faith, and legislate it on a Protestant or a Jew or an atheist. We have separation of church and state in the United States of America", quotes the Washington Post.

Now, I happen to believe that life continues beyond conception. So, if a parent decides to terminate a child's life at say, six months, is that protected religious practice? Stupid question. Nevertheless, this basic acknowledgement of human life by a prominent national Democrat cracks open the door on the abortion debate in a way the abortion advocates never wanted. The last thing they want to acknowledge is that life begins at conception. Some interesting chemical process, maybe. But we must not call it "life".

So there we have it. Hand-wringing, eyebrow-lurching concern that his fading Botox cannot hide. We say lots of things about abortion — that it ought to be safe, rare and legal. That it is simply a matter of choice. We say all sorts of things about abortion, but can't quite bring ourselves to say what it is. Let's seize this opportunity and put a stake in the ground right now.

If life begins at conception, then the termination of that life is just that — killing. If we accomplish nothing else in the abortion debate this political season, let's at least get the "it's only a choice" side to admit one thing: that abortion is indeed the taking of human life.

If a woman, in her conscience, can go against the very fiber of her being and take the life of her child — in the name of health, safety, choice, convenience, whatever — then I guess we all have to live with the consequences of that decision. But we ought to, at the very least, acknowledge that a life has been taken. Don't dishonor life by denying its existence.

So the law permits abortion. It may be safe, it may be legal. Certainly it's not rare. But if life begins at conception, then what abortion really is, boils down to one word. Check the dictionary.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Aljazeera endorses Kerry/Edwards ticket

Islamic news agency Aljazeera endorsed the Kerry/Edwards presidential ticket today, Sean Hannity reported on his radio show today. Upon hearing the news, Edwards was overheard saying:

"While I don't know Al personally, I certainly welcome his support."

Kerry's new jobs training program

During the primaries, Democratic party leaders said of John Edwards, "This is not the time for on-the-job training in the White House on national security issues."

Today, John Kerry changed all that. Kicking off his plan to create ten million jobs, Kerry announced his intention for John Edwards to be his Vice Presidential running mate.

"Senator Edwards will receive extensive training on all the issues. After eight years of following my example, Edwards will have supported all sides of every issue and will be the perfect candidate for President in 2012."

When asked about Edward's leadership abilities, Kerry offered this: "Edwards is nothing if not decisive. For example, on the North Korea nuclear crisis. In his own words, his plan is, 'something different from what the [Bush] administration has.'

"In my book, that's leadership at its finest."

Friday, July 02, 2004

If I had a hammer...

I'd use it to smash every racist law in the land. California — notable for its domination of the Left Coast — has a law that prevents black children from taking standard IQ tests. Fox News reports a mother who wanted her six year old child tested to see if he qualifies for special education. Such tests are routinely administered — but not to black children. The tests were thought to be discriminatory and were banned by the courts some years ago. By law, black children cannot have their IQs tested.

Why is it leftist social engineers — aka public school administrators — cannot bring themselves to believe black children actually could compete on even terms with other kids? Are they afraid they would actually have to teach them something useful?

Thursday, July 01, 2004

No thanks, no problem

Just read Michelle Malkin's bit on pet peeve phrases and it hit a nerve. I have a real bugaboo with service these days anyway, and our plummeting literacy is just making things worse.

I went to our local grocery store the other day and passed through the checkout. The clerk did not say "thank you", so I said "thank you" myself. The clerk just blankly responded, "No problem". Oddly enough, this employee's title is "Courtesy Clerk".

That's it, "no problem"? But, there is a problem. This clerk just assured me that I did not create a major inconvenience by expecting him to do his job. How very considerate.

This is normal these days. Kids simply have no idea what civil dialogue is. I'm pretty sure in my day I would have said, "Oh no, thank you", feeling a tad embarrassed at not having thanked the customer first. But today, they don't blink an eye. They don't even say "you're welcome", just "no problem".

Do managers even know what their people say? Are they not instructing employees on simple courtesy? Do they even care?

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