Archive for April 11th, 2009

April 11, 2009





UPDATE 7:15 P.M. ET: OK, apparently this isn’t so much news as it is “news to me,” since I’ve been wrapped up in other stuff and haven’t kept up with my celebrity news (via WeSmirch).

Welcome to the Blog Age: You start paying attention to “work” and next thing you know, you’re so far out of the loop that Saturday you report as “urgent” news that actually broke on Monday:

She was shunned from the party and locked out of her love nest. Now, Lindsay Lohan exclusively tells E! News that reports of her breakup with Samantha Ronson are true: “We are taking a brief break so I can focus on myself.”
The decision was made Monday morning following a rather rough weekend. First, the 22-year-old was barred entry from a Ronson family party on Friday. Then a locksmith was seen paying a house call to Ronson’s abode, where Lohan had resided in recent months.

OK, maybe you’re like me. You’ve been so busy with trivial stuff — piracy in Somalia, gay marriage in Iowa, your job, your family — that you also missed this earth-shattering development in America’s cultural landscape. Don’t worry: I’ll catch you up on the whole sordid story in subsequent updates. First, however, let us all agree that Samantha Ronson was unworthy:

As they say on “Sesame Street,” one of these things just doesn’t belong here. OK, sensitive tolerant guys understand that Lindsay’s not obligated to enact some Bob Guccione-scripted lipstick-lesbian fantasy in her personal life. However, even a vicious sexist homophobe could have been somewhat understanding if Lindsay had hooked up with a really butch type, like one of those bulked-up pro wrestling chicks from WWE, but . . . Sam Ronson?

Nah, that’s just wrong. It’s the gay equivalent of Britney’s quickie Vegas wedding to that stupid hometown loser. And so naturally, I’m thinking, Cry for help. This Sam Ronson fling was just Lindsay playing the LUG (Lesbian Until Graduation) game that dweeby college girls use to avoid the whole ugly date-rape-herpes-and-abortion scene of 21st-century campus heterosexuality.

While we await the oddsmaker’s line on the gay/straight scenario, my money says Lindsay will next make headlines as arm-candy for an NBA player. NTTAWWT.

UPDATE 7:58 P.M. ET: Still doing background research on the LiLo/SamRo breakup, but meanwhile Professor Douglas provides linkage and hometown eye-candy, which should keep you sick freaks busy for about 10 minutes.

UPDATE 8:09 ET: Speaking of wasting your life online, I cite this testimonial from loyal reader Bob:

Funny…it all began when I started commenting on a discussion between McCain and Jimmie over the merits of Battlestar Galactica. I only found his site in the first place because I was researching Grace Park for my doctoral thesis on Asian schoolgirl uniforms.

Understand that on his way to coffee-spewing LOL, Bob’s online journey through the smear machine took him to the site of a disgruntled former colleague of mine who, when last I heard anything about him, was being evicted by his own sister. It’s a crazy world, and it helps to have a sense of humor.


April 11, 2009

Little Miss Attila got me with "Sea Citizens"

by Smitty (hat tip: LMA)

She’s pointing to this a delightful bit of absurdity about the State Department re-classifying “pirates” as “sea citizens”. About the only thing TFA got wrong was the spelling of “Meredeth”, whose last “e” should be an “i”, if Google has the right of things.
As the Google Reader would have it, Information Dissemination, a reputable squid blog, was the next article in the queue. Here is an un-rosy summary of the situation:

Terrorism in Somalia has long driven Navy operations off that coast. On one side, we have a high visibility piracy problem that does not threaten the interests of the United States directly, at all, and our only current national interest regarding the piracy issue is one man with 4 guys in an orange boat 200 yards off the bow of the USS Bainbridge (DDG 96). There is a national economic interest, but the impact to date has not risen to a level that has created a serious concern among global leaders to the point they are willing to commit serious resources toward solving the problem.
On the other side of the Somalia problem, we have the terror problem no one else in the world is interested in doing anything about. And in the middle is the reality that while both the pirates and terrorists are operating in the same black market space, the pirates and terror groups don’t like each other.
Then there is another problem. What if we support a government strong enough to remove piracy, but too weak to do anything about the terrorism cells? Piracy is what has the international community involved in the problems of Somalia right now, if that goes away, we are left with the bigger threat to our national interests and no one internationally to help.
Somalia is much to complicated for the comparisons some are making to Pakistan and Iraq. At least in those places, we know who we want to work with. The government of Somalia doesn’t even have governing control over the regions involved in piracy, and the areas the government does control are where the terror groups have sanctuary.
I got creamed last year in the comments by my readers for suggesting the pirates could possibly be the most desirable group to work with in Somalia, but we should not quickly dismiss that possibility. I’d rather work with a capitalist criminal whose motivation is money than a religious terrorist who is more interested in ideology, but that is just me.
The Somalia issue will very often come down to making the least bad choice among a list of really bad options available.

I don’t care who won the election: this promises to be long and messy.

April 11, 2009

Pax Americana Fugit?

by Smitty

Philo of over at The View from Alexandria posts a review of the POTUS world tour and summarizes:

it became clear that, as Caroline Glick says in a brilliant article, Obama was announcing that America will no longer act as the world’s policeman. Pax Americana is over.

By all means, pay attention to the lips. But do not ignore the wallet. At the moment, the US still allocates the lion’s share of the global defense budget. Past performance is no guarantee of future outlays, however. Badly as some might wish to resurrect the Monroe Doctrine, the rest of the world may not permit it. You can’t have tsunami relief without a navy, for example. And how do you fund the chronic boredom while you await the acute crisis?
Philo’a analysis gets more critical:

There are several lessons to take away from all this, I think. First, it’s become clear that the left really is fundamentally hostile to human freedom. Leftists talk as if they are the defenders of civil liberties, human rights around the globe, etc. Yet in every global conflict they take the side of those who quash civil liberties and violate human rights. I can only conclude that the talk is either insincere or based on the foolish fantasy that if the United States were friendly to bullies they would stop being bullies and become like us.

Come on, Philo: the Renaissance and Enlightenment were but fads. We now have the velvet handcuffs of Socialism to give us happiness in slavery. Lighten up and dig the cookbook, man.

Second, the Obama administration is at best naive, operating on the basis of such a fantasy. But it may something much worse than that. Glenn Reynolds famously said about some opponents of the war in Iraq: “they’re not anti-war; they’re just on the other side.” Think about the peace movement of the 1920s and 1930s. Some of those people were naive, thinking that if Britain and the United States disarmed and made enough concessions to Lenin, Stalin, Mussolini, and Hitler, there would be peace. But some were Soviet or Nazi sympathizers. Some were Soviet agents. Is Obama naive enough to think that if America disarms and appeases aggressors they will stop being aggressors? Or does he want the aggressors to win? Is he, in short, on the other side?

If he is Gödel’s incompleteness theorem applied to the US Constitution, then we have to calmly admit that we got here over decades. Then we have to rip our eyes away from the inferior distractions like the League of Ordinary Milquetoasts and muster at the Tea Party for some principled, Constitutional opposition. Toughen up for the 2010 elections. This administration is only the Thing That Should Not Let It Be if we do nothing.(Stacy will flog me for that, no doubt)

April 11, 2009

Frankly Magesterial Juxtapositions Requiring Answers

By Smitty
Yet another Rule 2, Full Metal Jacket Reach Around Saturday. And the links just keep on comin’:

  • Donald Douglas is a powerhouse. His blog fu is prolific, timely, potent, and most of all, links this blog in a classically liberal fashion.
    He had us smiling on:
  • Protein Wisdom continues as another big supporter.
  • The Troglopundit…(sigh)
    • He reveals he wants to be RSM when he grows up. Some think Stacy inspires strange loyalty because he has false teeth…with braces on them. I think it’s because he has sideburns…behind his ears*.
    • He comes down rather heavily on Donald Douglas of American Power Blog, then assumes it’s a Rule 4 play. I’m voting ‘present’ on this one.
    • He scores some pleasant Rule 5 on Yuri Fujikawa. Domo arigantoni to you, boss.
    • He is thankful for the Passive Pity-Lanche, as well.

      This post includes a reference to me (with a link) that is at least twice as complimentary as the very last thing a former girlfriend once said to me.

      Lance: your assignment is to digest this page of Lombardi quotes. I don’t know what else I can do for you over HTTP.

    • *Paraphrase of a Steven Wright joke.

  • Paco Enterprises continues its staunch support of this blog.
    • Paco expresses some concern over the Paul Ryan profile. We need to get Paco to CPAC. I think this would remove the Ryan doubt, should the man deliver another speech as great as his last.
    • He also enjoyed the ‘second-hand expertise’ riff in the last Brooks fisking.
    • Finally, Paco linked this blog en route to piling on the vile Kos remarks about the latest mass murder tragedy.
  • There isn’t a blogger we like more at ToM than Monique Stewart.
    • She starts off with noting Notre Dame won’t hear a note from the TVM dames.

      Notre Dame has finally shut this production down, whether it was by the administration realizing they are a private Catholic institution and putting the smack down, or the students realizing this play is absurd and no one is interested in it, anymore. The shock has worn off.

      She sheaths the suggestion that they await a monologue Perhaps Only The Ultimate Satsifier (POTUS) can bring.

    • She also quoted the homeschooling post at length, not understading the left’s commitment to recreational guilt.
    • Don’t know who told her I’m a CZJ fan, but she came through in Rule 5 fasion. And she followed up her penchant for glamor with some Katy Perry today.
  • Northern Virginia’s own Pundit and Pundette linked a couple of posts.
  • William Teach at The Pirates Cove picked us up twice.
  • The Blog Prof tapped us twice.
    • First, he added one to the new P.U.M.A.With a name like P.U.M.A., they’d better get the Cougar Den to advertise it (not quite SFW):
    • He also linked the POTUS Maximus cold open, without any further comment
  • Here’s a new one on the radar: NOLI INSIPIENTIVM INVRIAS PATI (“Don’t let the turkeys get you down”). I think the author is a she, and she she takes issue with Stacy on the education post:

    I disagree with RSMcCain that liberals are typically hypocrites. They don’t harbor any cognitive dissonance if they don’t practice what they preach. They feel that they are entitled to preach & it’s the proletariat’s job to do what they’re told for the good of the commune, or be sent to re-education camps.

    My only response is an old Slashdot sig: VIRINE NON SVMVS DEVO SVMVS (“Are we no men? We are Devo”). Aside: LMAO

  • Ed Driscoll liked Stacy’s blogging point of the other day, and includes a link to some mysterious “binky” who’s far madder than I.
  • The Rhetorican is a neophyte in these parts, but welcome. There was a nod on the bipartisanship post, as well a healthy exchange on the Sub-Carter business. How weird to be in the position of defending that brace of knaves
  • KURU lounge has revived the link dump format. I subscribed in my Google Reader, based upon the strength of their review box. Going through, I noted that a poster named Chad there had a Slashdot link. On occasional Tuesdays there, I drop a Burma Shave troll.
  • Moe accuses Stacy of modesty. He keeps using that word. I do not think it means what he thinks that it means in Stacy’s context.
  • Mark J. Goluskin over on the left coast understands unworkable ideas when he sees them. I miss the left coast. 😦
  • Fishersville Mike, slightly geographically to my left, braved fashion doom on this very blog.
  • Over on The Purple Center, we made a link roundup.
  • The Track-a-‘Crat also admires alliteration (and assuming assonance).
  • Stephen Gordon expanded on the David Weigel story about gun nuts. Not sure what’s nutty about my admiration of the M1911, but, if you say so…
  • Eric Florack wonders aloud, Charles Johnson: Kool-Air Sampler? and quotes at length from the GOP extremeists post. As the Ancient Commenter observed, And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works–Hebr 10:24
  • We got a Rule 5 nod over at the Craig’s Fencing Blog. Nice prise de fair, boss.
  • Great line from thePolitical Castaway on the topic of the North Korea response:

    The time has come for my teleprompter to put my foot down. And that foot is me.

    To which I’d add: “After they surgically remove it from my mouth.”

  • A lady in Baltimore who’s known as “Toaster Lover” (NTTAWWT) comes some agreement on a post concerning John Batchelor:

    the real problem with the GOP is that it never had to form a defining domestic policy.

    I’ll opine that among the dangers of political parties is the demolition of Federalism. Sure, the GOP should have domestic policy suggestions, but differentiate between state and national, please. Otherwise, we become The United State, Quod Barack Demonstrat

  • You know you’ve arrived when Crooks and Liars notices you. At least they may have noticed. The story concerned gun control. I’m not sure this is about the same guy with whom I was at the karaoke bar the other night:

    Now, the dog-pee angle is in fact handy for one thing: It lets neo-Confederates like Robert Stacy McCain simply sneer at reportage pointing out the white-supremacy aspect of the story, in a futile effort to kick some sand to cover the scent.

    One falls short of speculation concerning what they’ve been drinking over there.

  • Larwyn included us on the Link Kersplosion. Thanks.
  • Grandpa John appreciated ‘BTW, does this tinfoil hat make my butt look big?’ at length.
  • Hayek Center takes RSM’s take on “public intellectual” seriously.
  • Proof Positive liked the P.U.M.A. link. Nice logo. Aside: been there.
  • Rumblepak has a fine rant on Kos in the Rule 2 tradition. And we must boost the gain.
  • The Classic Liberal has begun a Moderate History of the GOP, and wonders if he, too has got a big bottom.
  • One Fine Jay picked up the post on internecine conflict
  • The Ordinary Gentlemen placed this blog alongside Red State for some left handed complementing:

    I can only hope that the conservative movement stays the course, and continues to run this thing into the ground. Total self-destruction is necessary for it to be replaced by any viable, honorable, or intellectual conservatism. Besides that, if I want a really good laugh from time to time, I can just visit a movement conservative blog or two. Nothing like some crazy to brighten your day. Now, if only they weren’t quite so predictable…

    Let’s flog their ‘about’ page just a bit:

    The League of Ordinary Gentlemen is a group blog
    [Bunch of Guys Sitting Around Talking, ‘BOGSAT’.]
    that hopes to bring a new style and sensibility to blogging.
    [So lost in nuance that they voted for Barack, one wonders.]
    The contributing writers hail from various points along the political spectrum,
    [Bunch of lefty infiltrators posing as ‘moderates’ to distract.]
    but all hold a deep and abiding commitment to the exploration of ideas outside the foray of rhetorical and ideological cul de sacs.
    [The foundational principles of conservativism are unshiny. Can’t we have freedom on the cheap?]
    The entries are less posts than they are dialogues
    [To make our waffling drivel seem fresh and new, you know.]
    with an aim towards sustained discussion on topics and issues that lay at the foundations of our lives.
    [How can we sell watered-down Socialism?]
    This approach, we hope, will provide readers
    [Snotty rich kids from the Northeast.]
    with a thoughtful and searching alternative analysis.
    Plus, we think the name is pretty cool… and bowler hats never go out of style.
    [My bow tie collection can beat up your bowlers.]

    The big doughnut you get when you search for “Tea Party” on this blog tells the tale.

  • The Poligazette led off a linkmess with this blog. Great place to start.
  • Political Byline enjoyed the Stacy/Jimmy word trade on the tinfoil hats, without getting too cheeky about it.
  • Red State is worried about infiltrators next Wednesday. Me, not so much. A healthy turnout next Wednesday, an order of magnitude more on 04July… Contradictory to the Def Leppard Doctrine, it is not ‘better to burn out than fade away’. The oppostion is going to pooh-pooh the Tax Day Tea Party as an idea that tried hard and lost part of itself in an accident. Patience.
  • Riehl World view gives a thumbs up on content, thumbs down on length. Troglopundit liked it. I’ll confess to skimming.
  • Seymour Nuts responded to the American Spectator blog post with a mixed review. Gentlemen: ‘Republican’ is a term as monolithic as ‘Christianity’ (or ‘Judaism’ or ‘Islam’ or ‘Buddhism, for that matter). You have to address a spectrum, or you will continue to have these yes-but-no exchanges.

Here endeth the browserbuster lesson. And remember the tip jar, or I won’t get any leftover pizza. 😦

April 11, 2009

Leisure and Marxism

“The nexus of economic statism and cultural libertarianism is not some odd pairing derived from unique circumstances, but a direct product of the end goal of Marxism. Economic statism is the preferred policy because it offers the false hope of spreading the wealth in a way that liberates the entire population from economic constraints in pursuing their goals. This is particularly appealing to people like artists and intellectuals whose activities are not relatively highly valued by capitalism. Cultural libertarianism removes the societal and cultural boundaries that repress and constrain the intellectuals and artists.”

April 11, 2009

Helpless against the hobo menace!

When Dan Riehl first told me about this, I couldn’t believe it:

Many more Marylanders would be eligible for hate crime protections under a bill gaining speed in the General Assembly.
The House of Delegates approved adding extra penalties Friday night for violent crimes against victims singled out because of age, gender, disability or because the person is homeless.
The statute already covers victims attacked because of race, religion, national origin or sexual orientation. (Emphasis added.)

Unilateral disarmament against vicious criminal hobos? Madness! Only one man can save us . . .


April 11, 2009

Little Miss Attila on Latinos

“. . . a numerically significant, slavelike underclass in my particular part of the world.”

She means that in the nicest possible way, of course. As a matter of policy, my primary concern is whether they are in her particular part of the world legally, and I will leave it to Attila to describe their other attributes by way of explaining her intolerance of “stereotypes.”

No, seriously, that was her intention. Stereotyping Canadians, Frenchmen and Jews — she’s OK with that. But not the Latinos. (She’s probably also OK with stereotyping hillbillies, so excuse me whilst I guzzle some moonshine, tune up my banjo, and pick a little of that bluegrass classic, “Lonesome Incestuous Ridge-Runner Blues.”)

Don’t worry, Attila. When the MALDEF protesters show up at your office demanding your immediate termination, Kathy Shaidle and I will be there to defend you against charges of xenophobic hatemongering.

“No, you’ve got it all wrong, compadre. You’ve taken her out of context. In her culture, ‘slavelike underclass’ is intended as high praise. She really loves you little brown people! Look, she sent us down here to give you this case of Corona and $20 so you could buy some enchiladas for your buddies there. Have yourselves a regular fiesta, ya know? Now, y’all boys take your megaphone and your picket signs and get on out of here. Hasta la vista, Jose!”

That ought to fix the problem. “Crisis mediation” is a speciality of mine.

April 11, 2009

James Wolcott: Cthulhu of Vanity Fair? (Plus: Gisele Bundchen Nude!)

James Wolcott’s Vanity Fair blog throws less traffic than Protein Wisdom, but — alas! — Jeff Goldstein, Dan Collins & Co. don’t have a high-end Conde Nast magazine to pay them a full-time salary to write unfunny “humor” posts:

For a Master of Disguise such as myself . . . majoring in latex masks and the slurring vowels of obscure dialects, infiltrating the Tea Parties will be a piece of pie. It will require little more than a series of message t-shirts tastefully spattered with barbecue sauce, baggy jeans, sneakers that double as orthopedic shoes, and a protest sign with at least one word defiantly misspelled, as if to say to the media, “Fuck you, MSM, only pussies adhere to that ‘i’ before ‘e’ bullshit.” Please forgive the obscenities and vulgarities–it’s all part of “getting into character” and feeling the role.

As much as some may be tempted to compare him to Cthulhu, Wolcott is not really interesting enough to be evil. He might be more usefully compared to Frank Rich, who became bored with writing theater criticism and decided instead to try his hand at political commentary. This seems to have inspired the imitative Wolcott, who had muddled around for decades as a media/pop-culture critic, to decide that this politics scene was the place to be.

How incestuously convenient that he’s married to a contributing editor at Vanity Fair, and so the fact that Wolcott’s political writing is both ill-informed and unenlightening matters not a whit. As I wrote nearly a year ago:

If James Wolcott is being paid by the word, his 3,700-word screed in the June issue of Vanity Fair is the Crime of the Century.The article is presented as describing the “vicious Clinton-versus-Obama rupture at Daily Kos” and thus an analysis of “a party-wide split” among Democrats, but it’s really nothing of the kind. In fact, it’s nothing at all. There is no reporting and very little that could be called research. Just massive paragraph after paragraph of florid prose.

Observant readers, contemplating the fact that Wolcott’s fictitious “party-wide split” failed to prevent the Democrats from carrying 53% of the popular vote in November, cannot help but conclude that Wolcott doesn’t know what he’s talking about. And yet he continues to collect a paycheck from Graydon Carter.

True to his belle-lettrist roots, Wolcott apparently can’t be bothered to pick up a phone and call an actual source, much less trundle his corpulent ass somewhere and do any on-the-scene reporting. He expects to be admired on the basis of his self-imagined eloquence and wit, which explains why he goes to such lengths with his stereotypical portrayal of conservatives as troglodyte hicks who can’t spell.

Like his marriage to Laura Jacobs, Wolcott’s liberalism is incestuously convenient. Vanity Fair is basically a fashion/celebrity magazine, and the inclusion of ignorant political commentary is therefore not necessary to the magazine’s stock-in-trade. Yet New York being New York, and the magazine business being the magazine business, if Vanity Fair is going to feature ignorant political commentary, you can bet that it will be ignorant liberal political commentary.

So they sell a magazine by putting supermodel Giselle Bundchen naked on the cover — with a multi-page pictorial display inside — and use part of the resulting revenue to pay Wolcott to provide uninformative (and largely unread) filler between the ads for jewelry, cosmetics and brand-name clothing.

My search for wealthy investors to fund a magazine combining nude supermodels and conservative commentary has been unssuccessful so far. Oh, there are plenty of guys in the blogosphere who’d be happy to write conservative commentary for 20 cents a word, but nude supermodels? They would require the supervision of a trained professional journalist.

UPDATE: Dan Collins is overjoyed to be named by good ol’ Wolly. Just don’t try to elbow me out of that gig as Editorial Director for Nude Supermodels at the new magazine, Dan.