Archive for May 30th, 2009

May 30, 2009

My son Bob challengesthe King of Rock ‘n Roll

Click here to hear my 16-year-old son play heavy metal guitar. He knows chicks dig his cool Gibson SG. The boy has worked hard to improve his skills, but the sexy? That’s genetic.

My sexy wife, by the way, is convinced that at least 10% of my Facebook friends are girls who actually wanted to befriend Robert Stacy McCain Jr. Easy to tell the difference: Junior is the one who likes cats.

It’s OK, I’m still the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll.

UPDATE: Everybody’s a blog critic at my house.

Mrs. Other McCain: “Why did you use that picture with the nasty long hair?”
Me: “Well, he’s a rock star, right? Long hair. Besides, chicks dig cats.”
Junior: “Wait a minute, I’ve got a sexier picture than that . . .”

Yeah, he is wearing a Lynyrd Skynyrd hat. Which is definitely cool, even if not sexy.

May 30, 2009

‘Cause I’m the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll

Just a hunk, a hunk of burnin’ love, baby.

UPDATE: My son Bob challenges the King.

May 30, 2009

If Obama’s lost Ted Rall . . .

. . . he’s lost un-America:

We expected broken promises. But the gap between the soaring expectations that accompanied Barack Obama’s inauguration and his wretched performance is the broadest such chasm in recent historical memory. This guy makes Bill Clinton look like a paragon of integrity and follow-through. . . .
Ted Rall, “It’s increasingly evident that Obama should resign,” Springfield (Ill.) State Journal-Register, May 29, 2009

(Via Memeorandum.) You might also want to read this:

Details . . . were not the Obama campaign’s strongest selling point. Rather, Obama succeeded by capitalizing on the kind of boundless Hope that prompted a Florida woman, Peggy Joseph, to her memorable declaration after a late-October campaign rally: “I won’t have to worry about putting gas in my car; I won’t have to worry about paying my mortgage. You know, if I help him, he’s gonna help me.”
Such irrational expectations are inevitably followed by disillusionment. No prediction of what the next four years might bring is safer than this: The yawning gap between Hope and reality will produce a bumper crop of ex-Democrats. . . .
Robert Stacy McCain, “Future Ex-Democrats,” The American Spectator, Nov. 24, 2008

Of course, if Ted Rall becomes an ex-Democrat, he’ll likely end up Green, but a complete 180 from far Left to far Right is not unimaginable. Whittaker Chambers and David Horowitz were both Communists once, and Ronald Reagan was such a “bleeding heart” liberal that in the 1940s he unwittingly joined two Communist front groups.

Horowitz announced his departure from the Left with a conference called “Second Thoughts,” which term aptly describes how one goes from disappointment to repudiation. And the weird thing is, it doesn’t really matter what the specific disappointment was.

The point is, if you feel like you’ve been suckered — hustled, flim-flammed, bamboozled, sold out, ripped off — and you have both pride and curiosity, you will begin to wonder whether it was all just a scam from Day One.

Neither Stupid Nor Naive
A man like Ted Rall thinks of himself as intelligent and cynical. One reason he so stridently identifies himself as “progressive,” is that the alternative — becoming a conservative — appears to him something that only stupid and naive people would do.

Whatever you might say of David Horowitz, however, he is neither stupid nor naive. Horowitz knew full well what he was abandoning when he left the Left, and he joined the Right with his eyes wide open.

I love Horowitz’s Radical Son (one the most important memoirs of our generation) but the first book of his that had an impact on me was Destructive Generation: Thoughts About the Sixties, co-authored with his longtime Ramparts colleague, Peter Collier. Destructive Generation exposes, in specific details, the utter falseness of the “progressive” vision, which fanatically pursues what Friedrich Hayek called The Mirage of Social Justice.

That intelligent men and women would dedicate themselves to the lifelong pursuit of a mirage says something about how incredibly tempting that mirage is. Ronald Reagan was not the first, but certainly the most famous, to say that what the Left offers is the same thing the serpent offered in Eden: “Ye shall be as gods.”

The Evil Coalition of Liars and Fools
It is my firm belief that Reagan’s background as an ex-Democrat, a labor union leader, and indeed something of a commie dupe, accounted for his tremendous courage and clarity as a conservative leader. He not only knew what ideas he was opposing, but he had some insight into the sentiments and character of the people he opposed.

I’ve described the Democratic Party as the Evil Coalition of Liars and Fools. Reagan had been one of those fools, and he possessed a very canny understanding of the liars who had misled him into believing in that progressive mirage.

Progressives are utopians, and it is important to remember that Thomas More coined the word “utopia” from Greek roots, so that the meaning of the word is, “nowhere.”

The progressive is marching down the road to nowhere, seeking an objective that does not actually exist and can never exist. The progressive claims to cherish liberty and equality, yet supports a policy agenda that, if fully implemented, would annihilate liberty and render the great bulk of men the servants of a political elite.

Claiming to be humanitarian idealists, progressives in fact have succumbed to a form of malignant narcissism that compels them to pursue their vision — The Vision of the Anointed, as Thomas Sowell so brilliantly described it — because it reinforces their presumptions of moral and intellectual superiority.

This vision is what the conservative rejects, and what makes the conservative convert such an effective leader is that he knows full well what he has rejected — and he knows it personally, first-hand, subjectively. He knows the flattering deceit of believing himself more enlightened, more tolerant, more sophisticated than his fellow man, merely because he identifies as a Democrat, a liberal, a progressive.

The Stalinist Ice-Ax
Knowing the psychological motivations of progressivism so intimately, the erstwhile liberal reflects on his own experience and realizes that others might also be persuaded to forsake their uptopian delusion. Who better to reach out to Democrats than the ex-Democrat?

Elizabeth Fox Genovese was a Marxist historian who became the head of the women’s studies department at Emory University. Her intellectual rigor — for dialectical materialism is nothing if not rigorous — eventually led her to question some of the sloppy self-indulgence of feminist thought and Mrs. Genovese soon found herself accused of sexual harassment.

Rather than become a feminist analog of Trotsky — who tried to maintain his dissident Marxism and ended up with a Stalinist ice-ax in his skull — Mrs. Genovese turned on her erstwhile comrades. (You may see one example here.) Like Chambers before her, she embraced Christianity and called the radical-egalitarian lie a lie.

The life of Trotsky proves the same point that the life of Danton earlier proved: The Left is always more dangerous to its friends than to its enemies. Just as the Jacobins ultimately sent the tumbrels for those who had made possible the French Revolution, so too did Stalin order the execution of the original leaders of the Bolshevik Revolution.

There are many conservatisms, but there can be only one Left. You either support the leadership cadre in whatever they say and do, or else you will be an outcast and a pariah. Just ask David Horowitz what his erstwhile “friends” said of him after he began to question the New Left’s support of the Black Panthers and the Weather Underground.

Many other things could be said on this topic, but I find that commenters in another thread have accused me of arguing ad hominem, and I must go there to update with my gleeful confession. A mastery of ad hominem invective is one of my more useful skills, and if some of these arrogant preppy sons of bitches would get out of my way, I might have more time to employ these arts against the Left.

UPDATE: Before I go over to that other thread and smack around the pompous wienerheads who have accused me of ad hominem, let me first throw some Rule 2 action on Moe Lane of Red State:

Ted Rall defines himself by what he hates; when he flips, he’s going to end up in some other internal head-space that’s just as tediously scary and banally ugly as the one that he was in for the last eight years. And when the next President takes office, he’ll hate that office holder, too; and so on, and so on, and so on. So let him rot where he is.

Sorry, Moe, I disagree. Hate can be a useful force in politics, and if Rall’s disillusionment with Obama causes him eventually to hate the Left, I will welcome him with open arms.

BTW, today is Rule 2 Saturday, when Smitty delivers the weekly Full Metal Jacket Reach-Around, an expression of what might be called the Orgasmic Theory of Traffic Enhancement: If you link them, they will come.

Doug at Daley Gator can explain, as he delivers a few loving caresses of linkage . . .

UPDATE II: Stop the ACLU takes a stroll down Memory Lane with some of Rall’s most disgusting attacks on Republicans and says:

So, when he publishes a screed like this . . . you know things are not all fairy dust and unicorn poots in Liberal World.

Indeed, the solidarity of the Left is the product of a unifying force-field of hatred. As much as they hate and resent each other, such intramural antagonisms are but the tiniest fraction of their all-encompassing hatred for everything right, decent and wholesome.

A failure to comprehend the depth and intensity of the Left’s hatred is why so many Republicans (e.g., the Bearded Church Lady) make the mistake of thinking they can win with the Politics of Niceness. It’s very easy to derogate the brashness of Mark Levin, but give Levin credit for being smart enough not to play that idiotic game.

Or, in the famous words of Rahm Emanuel . . .

UPDATE III: Welcome Instapundit readers! Please feel free to click around, visit the blogroll sites. Also, check out my Jacksonian ruminations at the Hot Air Green Room. And don’t forget that it’s Full Metal Jacket Saturday with the Rule 2 reach-around.

‘Cause I’m the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, baby! So hit the tip jar. Thankyuhvrrruhmuch.

May 30, 2009

Flagrantly Myopic Judicial Ruminations Amaze

by Smitty

This week’s Full Metal Jacket Reach Around honors the female Latina woman of the opposite sex who will soon be feeling something about a Constitution near and dear to you.
We’re working with a selection of links culled from Technorati. If you feel neglected, please direct the SMTP flamethrower at Smitty, where you will receive better treatment than a GM/Chrysler bondholder.

  • The Blog Prof leads off with The Passion of the Crist, linking that GOP pink elephant. He also linked the pastor who was threatened out in California. Finally, he wonders aloud about Sonia S., after noting her educational credentials:

    “Can anyone be named to the SCOTUS that isn’t from one of these ivy-league liberal bastioons?”

    The answer is: No, and quit thinking about ‘spitoons’ while spelling ‘bastions’. It’s almost like you’re disrespecting the cradles of your elite blue-state overlords, or something.

  • Jimmy, proprieter of The Sundries Shack, liked my turn of phrase. His one-line take on Sonia is also painfully apt: If you need a one-line summation of Judge Sotomayor’s judicial philosophy, it seems to be this: to her thinking, the law is what she says it is.
  • Stephen Green picked this blog for #2 in the cloudy-tubes Question of the Week: Tucker Freaking Carlson?. More to follow on that one.
  • Robert, at the Camp of the Saints, joined the Not One Red Cent movement. He appreciates the optimism in the “Battle of the Bulge” line. He laughs at Freddie’s stream of bile over on OG. He adds RSM to his excellent WWU-AM page. Juxtaposing the Illuminatus Trilogy with Richard Pryor is brilliant! Furthermore, he picked up the Nashville Muslim Protest Shutdown story. Best of all, he emailed me directly, as he flys below the Technorati radar.
  • Apparently there is a place called “stapundit”. Also, there is a blogger, “instapundit”, who liked us on the bond post and he threw out a “Heh” at Stacy’s suggestion of a Tennessee SCOTUS nominee. I think I may have heard of this “instapundit” once before, but I’m not sure where.
  • The Daily Gator predicts a short fight. To recap:

Listen to the Muppets, people:

  • The Gator also thought the ‘courts make policy’ clip was a ‘scream’, of sorts, but you’ll have to follow the link to see what I mean.
  • Rumblepak couldn’t wait for an RSM rebuttal to Dreher, so he provided one:

    What conservatism needs is leadership and aggressive spokespersons who unabashedly advocate conservative ideas.

    He follows up here, with some bonus Jonah

  • Donald Douglas links us On the Relevance of Intramural Ideological Disputes. He cued off of “What DealerGate Says About the Conservative ‘Message’ Problem” in On the Chrysler Dealergate Controversy. As an academic, I’m surprised that he didn’t come at it from this angle: public sector is to private sector as educators are to students. Mixing the two is an occasion to call in The Police. I’m sure he’s linked more, but the Technorati gawdz have fumbled the URLs. Sorry, sir.
  • Dan Collins slid us some linkage on The Death of Literary Studies. The death of studies, in general, can be linked to the idea that you can deconstruct almost anything.
  • The Troglopundit only came through with one URL, a holiday roundup. But I do love the Pig graphic, Lance. Mmmmm, bacon.
  • Another Black Conservative picked up the because you’re wrong post. Definitely a “follow” blog over there on Blogspot. A.B.C. also has The Black Sphere in the sidebar, which features some primo material.
  • The New Republic has a blogger named Christopher Orr who observed the Levin fracas last week and quotes Freddie deBoer saying RSM:

    …is most assuredly not one of the Ordinary Americans he is here glamorizing.

    Freddie: I’ve hung out with RSM in a dive bar. While he’s better-read than 95% of the population, this has not mutated him into an Ive-league slack-jaw in the slightest.

  • The Creaky Pavillion thinks that “offend a feminist” should reall be “offend a woman”. The blog title looks Cyrillic, and the other posts hint that something may be getting lost in translation.
  • The Fishwrangler liked the RSM phrasing:

    “The idea that you pull back from a fight because someone is from a different ethnic group is part of the mistake Republicans made and how we got President Obama in the first place.”

  • Michael Doerr at the Race 4 2008 was massively unimpressed with RSM’s pointing to rumors of homosexuality as a possible negative for Charlie Crist.
  • The Rat Nest has “long maintained that [ Bill Clinton’s] greatest ability in the economic sector was to keep out of the kitchen.” This was in the context of ‘What did I tell you about bonds?’
  • Pat in Shreveport rounded up Sotomayor links, including this humble blog, adding an interesting Mark Rubio quote.
  • Jason at The Western Experience “clear[ed] up the part about “double natural reflexes.”” in the Sean Penn post. It involved pressing “the button”.
  • Adam’s Web published the blogger love note to Sen. Cornyn. This closing was thoughtful:

    As Morrissey points out, a similar tactic is causing friction among New York Democrats even coming from the far more popular Obama White House. Already Cornyn is having to dodge questions on Facebook and in blogger conference calls and has a brushfire of anomosity building up. Now would be a good time for a graceful retreat to neutrality.

  • Clark at The American Conservative liked McCain’s description of Dreher as “the bearded Church Lady”.
  • Meanwhile, the full snore at The League of Ordinary Milquetoasts entitled “the ballad of RSM” tries to come to Dreher’s defense. This ballad is so lyric as to leave one pining for The Other Other McCain doing Barbara Streisand. Freddie, you’re teh best.
  • QuoteGator says something that Freddie & ilk would do well to hear, in the context of Colin Powell’s whinining about Bush and Cheney:

    Being Democrat Lite has gotten Republicans nowhere. It’s about damned time that they man up and stand up for the values that made the Republican Party what it was.

  • Dan Riehl linked us while commenting upon the sad isolation of David Frum. *mope*
  • Roth & Company thank this blog for the link that brought the traffic. You’re welcome.

Then there are those that we’d like to link in greater detail, but whose URLs did not make it through the grinder:
Please fight the injustice by sending your links directly to Smitty. And hit the tip jar.


  • Dustbury merges HillBuzz with RSM on the Dr. Utopia question.
  • Politics and Critical Thinking responded to the URL bleg with two Sotomayor posts of the worth-your-time variety:
    • Reasons Conservatives Might Use to Oppose Sotomayor Nomination
    • Sonia Sotomayor and Legal Opinions on her Nomination
    • If Smitty was on the Senate Judiciary Committee, here’s what I would do. I would gather all of the absurd leftist blovinations from hearings for Roberts, Alito, Thomas, Bork, etc. I would edit them down to fit my microphone time. I would change the wording to fit the Sotomayor context. I would change the spirit of them such that they were clearly connected to the preceding hearing, but swerved at the last second to say gracious things about Sotomayor. Get all of the Republican Senators together, and have a group stand-up comedy routine that says: “Have your desired candidate. Know that we have laughed, in your face, at length, and in detail for what a circus clown act you’ve made of Senate Confirmation hearings.” In other words, I think a protracted, leftist fight over Sotomayor runs the risk of pyrrhic victory. However, a well-crafted Thermopylae (if you will) could contribute to galvanizing “We the people” into further gallant acts in the face of our modern liberal/Persian invaders. Then again, I could be vastly overestimating the skill of the Senate GOP. But, as they say in Cockney Rhyming Slang, just a “tear in a bucket”.

  • The Skepticrats had a couple of links: RSM on Fire, and The Sensitive Mr. Dreher, both of which relate to RSM’s scorched earth approach to RINO habitat maintenance, Mr. Deher’s sad little patch in particular.
  • From Chance, at Right of Course we have four choice links:
  • Little Miss Attila links What DealerGate Says About the Conservative ‘Message’ Problem, along with revelations about what she does to deal with said difficulty. You should subscribe to LMA in your RSS and savor every post.

Update II:Carol at No Sheeples Here has a complementary FMJRA post of her own, well worth your time.

Update III:Chad: there is no excuse, but please accept a plea to push links so I can do The Right Thing. Purely a sin of omission, not commission, and your aid is sought.

May 30, 2009

‘This will not end well for him’

So says TechCrunch’s Leena Rao of Tucker Carlson and his project, which proposes to be the “Huffington Post of the Right,” and which is already being laughed to scorn.

That’s what was so ridiculous about him announcing it at a bloggers lunch, as I explained yesterday:

If you’re going to start a new Web site, you don’t begin by holding a press conference or issue a press release declaring your intention to start a new Web site. You bring the page up in beta, work the bugs out before anybody’s seen it, circulate the word to your blogger friends via e-mail, and only when you’ve got it rolling good and steady do you issue a press release and start doing promotion. All of which anybody in the business would have told you, if you had bothered to ask.

But of course, he didn’t bother to ask, because he knows everything. After all, he’s already worked at every cable-news outlet there is. If he flops at Fox (as he’s flopped everywhere else) what next? Will he show up on Home Shopping Network? Yet if first-class free publicity is what he’s looking for, he sure got it from the Wall Street Journal:

The site will take on the form of a general interest newspaper, he said, and will even attempt to be faster than the popular and speedy Drudge Report. . . .
Mr. Carlson writes for the Daily Beast and was recently named to the Fox News position after a stint as a political correspondent on MSNBC. . . . How will Mr. Carlson balance the responsibilities of running a news Web site with his duties at other outlets?

That’s just it, you see: Tucker Carlson has never run a Web site. To my knowledge, he’s never even run a group blog. And Michelle Malkin (averaging 7 million hits per month) tells Michael Blatt:

It’s not as easy as some people think it looks. . . . You have to approach the whole enterprise with a healthy does of intellectual humility. It takes an enormous amount of time and energy to make something like this work. You’re doing it 24/7. It takes more than money. I think that is the lesson of the failure of Culture 11.

Oh, cursed dirigible! Oh, the humanity! Tucker Carlson is going to come strutting into Malkin’s ‘hood talking smack? He’s going to aggregate faster than Drudge? He’s going to do original reporting online and hasn’t talked to any of the young reporters I know in D.C.? (Ask Dan Riehl: I know everybody.)

Over at Newsbusters, Blatt quotes Carlson’s response to Malkin: “I hope Michelle will take a close look at the site when it’s out. I think she’ll like it.”

Then why the big announcement at Heritage? He couldn’t have called Malkin who, between her own site and Hot Air, grabs 22 million visits a month?

Hey, what about The New Ledger? What are those guys, chopped liver? Red State? What about Jennifer Rubin at Commentary? And never even mind the usual suspects: National Review, Human Events, The American Spectator, The Washington Times, CNSNews, NewsMax, WorldNetDaily, Townhall, The Weekly Standard . . . hey, they’ve got a few reporters, too, y’know.

When you start out with a big announcement, effectively giving the back of the hand to so many of your fellow conservatives . . . well, it had better not suck.

“Conservatives need to . . . find out what’s going on.”
Tucker Carlson, Feb. 27, 2009

UPDATE: At least one of the commenters has accused me of arguing ad hominem.

Guilty! And the commenter is guilty of the arrogant presumption that if I make an ad hominem attack, it is because I am incapable of making a point-by-point rebutal. But conservation of resources is one of the basic principles of warfare, and there are some arguments so ludicrous as not to merit the labor of constructing a detailed rebuttal.

My time is valuable, and if I make a point-by-point argument, the antagonist is thereby invited to reply with his own point-by-point argument. We might continue thus ad infinitum in a sort of intellectual trench warfare, overwhelming the spectators with a tedious re-hashing of minutiae. All fine and good for academic journals but for the blogosphere, not so much.

Tucker Carlson is an arrogant preppy who, according to Wikipedia, attended St. George’s School (tuition $41K/yr.) and Trinity College (tuition, room and board $51K/yr. ). Let him rebut that argument!

Now, it happens that Friday evening I spoke by phone with a well-known Internet entrepeneur, a fellow who describes himself as enthusiastically “pro-Tucker.” Having heard the explanation of my resentment over Tucker’s presumptious bigfooting into the blogosphere, my friend said, “Well, why don’t you reach out to him?”

“Dude, I did reach out to him. I kicked that bowtied son of a bitch right square in the knee.”

Why is it that the Tucker Carlsons of the world expect the rest of us to kowtow to them, to admire and support them in such a way that it is our obligation to “reach out” to them — cap in hand, tugging the forelock in reverent obeisance — and never their obligation to reach out to us? Merely because my parents couldn’t afford to send me to St. George’s doesn’t make me as a doormat upone which Tucker Carlson is invited to wipe his feet.

If you allow yourself to be a doormat, you can’t complain about the footprints on your back, and just because Tucker Carlson doesn’t know what I’m doing, he shouldn’t make the mistake of assuming that I don’t know what I’m doing.

May 30, 2009

That muffled thumping sound you hear

by Smitty (hat tip: Virginia Virtucon)

…is about a dozen or so Presidents from the last century flipping in the graves:

It must be said, that like the breaking of a great dam, the American decent into Marxism is happening with breath taking speed, against the back drop of a passive, hapless sheeple, excuse me dear reader, I meant people.

The source?

Holy f-bombing whiskey tango foxtrot, batman! The DailyKOS, sure, PuffingtonHost, maybe, but Pravda!?!
A tiny piece of my heart has just died.

Carol goes graphic on this one.