Archive for September 1st, 2008

September 1, 2008

Bristol Palin pregnant, mom says

Holy crap (or, as Allah says, “Oy”):

The 17-year-old daughter of Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin is pregnant, Palin said on Monday in an announcement intended to knock down rumors by liberal bloggers that Palin faked her own pregnancy to cover up for her child.
Bristol Palin, one of Alaska Gov. Palin’s five children with her husband, Todd, is about five months pregnant and is going to keep the child and marry the father, the Palins said in a statement released by the campaign of Republican presidential candidate John McCain.
Bristol Palin made the decision on her own to keep the baby, McCain aides said.
“We have been blessed with five wonderful children who we love with all our heart and mean everything to us,” the Palins’ statement said.
“Our beautiful daughter Bristol came to us with news that as parents we knew would make her grow up faster than we had ever planned. As Bristol faces the responsibilities of adulthood, she knows she has our unconditional love and support,” the Palins said.

UPDATE: OK, when in doubt, make a joke. Has Bristol ever been to Gloucester, Mass.? Because I’m thinking she’d fit right in. And as to facing “the responsibilities of adulthood,” does she realize she’s about this close to causing an Eagletonesque situation that might deliver the country to the tender mercies of Barack Obama?

Look, I’ve got all the sympathy in the world for young lovers, but great googly-mooglies, Bristol! What were you thinking? I’m going to bet that the father is every bit of 18 years old, and horribly unprepared for his own responsibilities.

I’ve said for a long time that it’s not teenage motherhood that’s the problem, but teenage fatherhood. Of course, the best strategy is to keep your britches on and avoid this kind of problem, but if you young girls are going to get yourself knocked up, at least have the good sense to get knocked up by a guy who’s old enough to have a decent job.

UPDATE II: In terms of the “responsibilities of adulthood,” I suggest at the AmSpecBlog, Bristol and her boyfriend (the mysterious Levi) need to face a press conference.

UPDATE III: OK, let me be clear that it is not teen motherhood, but unwed motherhood that is the embarrassment here. I have in the past written about my favorite famous teenage mothers (Loretta Lynn and Margaret Beaufort) and also said, “God bless Jamie Lynn Spears!”

Whatever embarrassment there might have been in a hastily-arranged private wedding for Bristol Palin and her boyfriend Levi two or three months ago, would it have been worse than what they’re facing now?

Christians need to be concerned about the trend of discouraging marriage in these Romeo-and-Juliet situations. I would call to their attention I Timothy 4, which warns against the “doctrines of devils … forbidding to marry.” Despite worries about the ability of teenage couples to make their way in the world, poverty is not a sin; fornication is.

UPDATE IV: Michelle Malkin recalls Barack Obama’s notorious “punished with a baby” remark, and says the media should leave Bristol Palin alone. And I’d agree with that, if Bristol’s actions had not caused such woes for her mother, for the Republican Party, and for America.

No, I think Bristol (and her boyfriend) ought to be willing to confront the consequences of their actions. They both certainly knew Sarah Palin was governor of Alaska, and that their affair would be an embarrassment. To plead “privacy” in such a situation simply won’t do.

Perhaps I’m so thick-skinned about this because I’ve got three teenagers (19-year-old daughter and twin 15-year-old boys) and know exactly what I’d expect of them in such a situation. It is not too much for parents to ask that their teenage kids keep their britches on, especially when one of the parents is a public official who might be ruined by such a scandal.

UPDATE V: Little Miss Attila refers to the press as “jackals” and “bottom-feeders.” Hey, it’s their job, OK? By this time tomorrow, you’ll have Levi’s full name and biography, you’ll know how he met Bristol, etc., etc. You’ll read it. You may feel guilty about reading it, but you’ll read every word of it.

Will you be grateful to the reporters who dug up those facts? No. Some poor shmuck of a reporter is even now knocking on doors in Alaska, getting rude responses and threatening gestures, in order to satisfy your pathological curiosity, and you diss him as a “jackal.” Fine. Don’t read the story when Drudge puts a siren on it tomorrow.

But you will read it, won’t you? So, who’s really the bottom-feeding jackal here?

September 1, 2008

‘Civil disobedience’ = buckets of urine

News from Minnesota:

At least five suspected leaders of the RNC Welcoming Committee, a self-described anarchist group, were taken to the Hennepin County jail, and another was being sought, said Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher.
On Saturday afternoon, he displayed a number of the confiscated items: a gun, throwing knives, a bow and arrows, flammable liquids, paint, slingshots, rocks and buckets of urine. . . .
Fletcher . . . stressed that he and other agencies had informants planted inside this and other groups for “a long period of time.”

(Via Hot Air.) I went to Denver for the DNC, but skipped the RNC in part because I thought a Republican convention would be boring, especially in St. Paul, Minn. Looks like these peace-loving “activists” were intent on proving me wrong.

That the cops in Minnesota had infiltrated the protest groups is hardly surprising; law enforcement used to do this kind of stuff all the time. Undercover infiltration fell out of favor after the COINTELPRO revelations of the ’70s, but was revived after the anarchist anti-globalization protesters turned violent at Seattle.

It was obvious to me that the Denver police had infilitrated the protest groups there. Monday afternoon, while walking down 16th Street on our way to PJHQ, we noticed squads of riot police forming up on the street corners. This seemed like an overreaction at the time, but about an hour later, we got word that the protesters at the Civic Center had marched toward 16th Street but been blocked by police. Clearly, the police had advance warning that this unannounced march was in the works, and moved to prevent the protesters from disturbing the diners and shoppers on 16th Street.

Ed Morrissey is right that news of police infiltration has probably generated extreme paranoia among the protesters. This was one of the tactics that busted up the KKK. When I lived in Georgia, I was friends with a high-ranking policeman who told me that if five people showed up for a Klan meeting, three would be police informants and a fourth would be an undercover FBI agent. I suppose the “progressive activists” in Minnesota would object to this comparison, but buckets of urine are hardly the tools of protected First Amendment speech.

September 1, 2008

Gay celebrity rent-a-womb

If you’re a rich guy who wants to sire kids, but you aren’t down with that nasty heterosexuality business, the free market has now supplied the solution. The surrogate who bore twins for Ricky Martin, it turns out, was hired through an agency that specializes in such arrangements. It was the third surrogate birth for the 26-year-old rent-a-mom.

Not every vaginaphobic celebrity can do like Clay Aiken, and find a lady friend to help him do through scientific assistance what he loathes to do by natural means. But if you’re rich enough, you can hire out a uterus and become a proud gay dad via artificial insemination.

Question: Do gay dads want to be present at the birth? I mean, if they hate and fear ladyparts so much, it must be traumatic to witness the vajayjay doing what nature meant it to do.

September 1, 2008

Downs Syndrome and maternal age

Just last week, I was chiding a young friend that he ought to marry his girlfriend (with whom I’d set him up last year) so they could start having babies. Playing matchmaker with young folks is an amusing hobby, partly because urging 20-somethings to wed and procreate is so politically incorrect in an era when societal pressure is almost entirely in the other direction.

Young people nowadays are told they should concentrate on establishing their careers rather than starting families while they’re young. But the careerist/materialist path, however sensible, strikes me as far less romantic than the impulsive let’s-go-see-the-preacher approach. And as a Southerner, I can’t resist the old-fashioned appeal of “Paint the shotgun white, Pa — it’s going to be a formal wedding!”

However, while I was researching my last post (about those idiotic left-wing Trig Palin rumors), I noticed that a commenter at Michelle Malkin’s blog had linked something that puts the weight of science behind my old-fashioned romantic ideas of young love. It’s a chart correlating the frequency of Downs Syndrome with maternal age, and it is a powerful argument against postponing motherhood.

For women ages 20-24, the frequency of Downs Syndrome is 1 in every 1,400 live births. By age 35, however, the frequency is 1 in every 350 births — a quadrupling of risk. At age 39, the frequency is 1/140 — 10 times the risk at age 20-24.

Risk is not certainty, of course. My wife and I have six children, the three youngest of whom are all healthy, even though they were born when my wife was 35, 37 and 39. Downs Syndrome, however, is only one of the serious complications associated with advanced maternal age. Indeed, waiting to have a baby increases the likelihood that you’ll never have babies at all.

The American Society for Reproductive Medicine reports that infertility affects 7% of women ages 20-24, but 15% of women ages 30-34 and 22% of women ages 35-39. In other words, a delaying motherhood by 10 years doubles a woman’s risk of infertility, while a delay of 15 years triples the risk.

Clearly, nature favors the young when it comes to motherhood. Thus, I claim scientific support for my advocacy of that wild-and-crazy romantic notion that young folks ought to get married and make babies. So ladies, next time that fellow starts lovin’ up on you, just whisper in his ear, “Let’s do something scientific!”

September 1, 2008

Boycotting Sullivan?

Ace sent an e-mail to “heavy hitters in the right-leaning respectable blogosphere” to suggest a boycott of Andrew Sullivan. See-Dubya got the e-mail. I’ve checked my inbox, but am not on the list, so I guess I’m at liberty to link Sullivan in explaining what this is all about.

Sully repeatedly gave vent to, and defended, the horrid and baseless speculation — apparently originating with a DKos vermin — that Sarah Palin’s fifth child, Trig, was actually her grandchild, having been born to Palin’s teenage daughter, Bristol. (See here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here.)

So, in no fewer than nine blog entries, this contributor to The Atlantic Monthly pumped oxygen into one of the most bizarre and disgusting conspiracy theories ever to emerge from the fetid swamps of the Leftosphere. This prompts Ace to engage in his own theorizing:

Since we’re airing “uncomfortable theories” of a medical type here which need to be explored, I doubt there is anyone on the blogosphere who hasn’t wondered — frequently — if Sullivan is suffering from AIDS-related dementia.
Ugly, yes, but we’re all thinking the same thing; and as we’re now apparently free to speculate about such ugly things, I see no reason why Sullivan should be further shielded.
He’s gone f—ing bananas, due to AIDS or steroids or other reasons, and if we’re not observing a minimum level of politeness and civility anymore — if innocent 16 year old girls are now valid targets — I see no reason to continue extending the courtesy
of polite silence to Sullivan.

Yeah. I guess this suspicion has been in the back of a lot of people’s minds for a while, and “the courtesy of polite silence” has generally prevented other bloggers from wondering aloud whether Sullivan’s erratic moods might be related in some way to his illness.

Nietzsche famously went mad due to syphilis, and while AIDS-related dementia is a less well-known phenomenon, I very well remember Sullivan’s 7,000-word paean to the joys of testosterone therapy. Given that he was resorting to such exotic treatments eight years ago, heaven knows what manner of mood-altering medications he might be using now.

In light of Sullivan’s indulgence of the Trig Palin conspiracy theory, however, he clearly has drifted far afield from the sober judgment he exhibited as editor of the New Republic 15 years ago. There was never a shred of credible evidence for that cheap smear — akin to idiot rumors of a lesbian affair between Janet Reno and Hillary Clinton — and thus no reason why any journalist should acknowledge it, except to denounce it.

Of course, I’m not a “heavy hitter” and probably not “respectable,” either, and I once got an “Yggy” nomination from Sully, so I might be more sympathetic than some others on the Right. Sullivan has written at length about Oakeshott and the importance of humility in conservative thought, and therefore ought to be humble enough to admit that he was wrong in allowing himself to go wading into the DKos muck. And in making such an admission, perhaps he will have cause to reflect on exactly why he’s drifted so far afield.

Having done my own share of drifting over the years, I am wary of the notion of irredeemable errors. A Christian ought to consider that when he is chastised, there is always a reason, no matter how unfair the chastisement seems at the time. And an admission of one’s own faults does not justify one’s enemies. God used the heathen Babylonians to chastise Israel, but this did not signify God’s favor toward heathenism, neither did it ultimately exempt Babylon from judgment, nor did it mean that God had broken His promise to Israel.

Sullivan has done wrong, and ought to make amends. But I am too great a debtor to grace to suppose that he is beyond hope of redemption.

UPDATE: Great day in the morning! Sully’s fairly sane, compared to some of the DKos/DUmmies whose wild conspiratorial fantasies Ace has unearthed now. It’s all a plot by Karl Rove, you see . . .

September 1, 2008

Sarah Palin: Ordinary American

Heather Mac Donald of City Journal scoffed at John McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin as “playing the identity-politics game,” but Mac Donald’s colleague Lisa Schiffren puts her finger on why the choice is so popular with the GOP rank-and-file:

In the first 36 hours after McCain announced his pick, $7 million in new contributions poured in online. This isn’t because Palin is making history as the first woman on a GOP ticket. It’s because of the type of woman and politician that she is. She’s a normal person, a mother and wife, who entered politics in 1992 by running for city council in Wasilla, Alaska to oppose tax hikes.

In short, Sarah Palin is an Ordinary American — a graduate of the University of Idaho, rather than an Ivy League college; a high-school basketball player, not a windsurfer; a beauty-pageant contestant, not lawyer; a member of the PTA, not NOW; a hunter, not an environmentalist. Palin clearly identifies with, and shares the interests of, the middle-class majority, rather than the elite.

(Cross-posted at AmSpecBlog.)

September 1, 2008

‘My parents went to see John McCain . . .’

. . . and all I got was this lousy T-shirt”?

This is Keagan Powers of Gahanna, Ohio. His mom and dad (my in-laws) took Keagan to see the McCain-Palin event in Dayton on Friday, but due to overcrowding were not able to get inside. This is news because it shows (a) the GOP ticket’s getting overflow crowds, and (b) my nephew’s so cute.
September 1, 2008

August: Another record month

The monthly traffic report: August yielded more than 73,000 visits, exceeding the combined total of the two previous months (June 27.8K + July 45.1K = 72.9K). The month-to-month traffic growth was about 38%.

Once again, thanks to Instapundit, Michelle Malkin, Ace of Spades and other big bloggers for linkage that pushed the peaks. The “lows get higher” factor — residual traffic to older posts building the “base” traffic so that the Sitemeter doesn’t return to the “zero hour” — is also noticeable.

After 571 visits on Aug. 2, the next-lowest day was 806 on Aug. 15, and every day after Aug. 17 was over 1,000 — with an extra boost to the end of the month because of people Googling for “Sarah Palin bikini pics.” In all, there were 26 days over 1,000+ traffic in August, and 12 days of 2,000+ traffic.

September 1, 2008

Video: Thursday in Denver

Got this footage while at the DNC …

September 1, 2008


Jason is good at playing dumb. Too good?

(Via Hot Air.)