Friday, August 26, 2005

Steve-o Bueller's Day Off...


It's a dark, dreary sick room. Shades drawn, floor strewn with used tissues, nightstand a still-life of over the counter remedies. EMAN is laying in bed. We don't see his face, only a silhouette with a thermometer sticking out his mouth. U2's SUNDAY BLOODY SUNDAY is playing. He's mumbling random words.


The phone rings. His hand reaches back and hits the speaker phone button.


Eman! What's happening?

Very little.

How do you feel?


Is your mother in the room?

EMAN takes the thermometer out of his mouth.

She's not home. Where are you?



Steve is sprawled out in the chair.

We're heading down to Crawford. Get
dressed and come over.

I can't. I'm sick.

It's all in your head. Come on over.


EMAN's insistant.

I feel like complete shit, Steve. I can't go anywhere.

I'm sorry to hear that. Now, come on over and pick me up. We've got a three-hour drive down to the loony peacenik show!

Steve disconnects. EMAN slowly hangs up the phone.

I'm dying.

The phone rings again. EMAN hits the speaker button.

You're not dying. You just can't think of anything good to do.


Steve hangs up.

If anybody needs a day off, it's EMAN. He has alot of things to sort out before he makes partner. He can't be wound this tight and get promoted. His partners'll kill him. I've come close myself. But I like him. He's a little easier to take when you know why he's like he is. The boy cannot relax. Pardon by French but EMAN is so tight that if you stuck a lump of coal up his ass, in two weeks you'd have a diamond.
And EMAN would worry that he'd owe taxes on it.

New York Times Editor "Regrets" Air America Silence?

As we've come to expect, Michelle's all over it:
Meanwhile, Byron Calame, "public editor" of the New York Times, has quietly filed a post to his "web journal" acknowledging that his colleagues "showed up late" to the Air America story and thus "poorly served" their readers.

Only after "weeks of articles by other newspapers" did the Times finally get around to noticing the scandal in its own backyard. And this oversight was especially regrettable, Calame allowed, in light of the "flurry of articles" the paper had run during the happy-face PR blitz surrounding Air America's debut in the spring of 2004. It's inconsistencies like these, he pointed out, that typically give rise to "a perception of liberal bias" at the Times, and before you know it, certain of the paper's right-wingier subscribers are writing in to complain.

Calame does have some good news to report, however. In this particular case, at least, any perception of liberal bias at the Times is one "for which I haven't found any evidence after checking with editors at the paper."
That's reassuring.

On al-Taqiyya...

As many folks know, Islam teaches that it is permissible to lie in order to avoid persecution. The link above is to an extended discussion on the subject, which is know as al-Taqiyya, which roughly translates as "dissimulation." Excerpt:
The word "al-Taqiyya" literally means: "Concealing or disguising one's beliefs, convictions, ideas, feelings, opinions, and/or strategies at a time of eminent danger, whether now or later in time, to save oneself from physical and/or mental injury." A one-word translation would be "Dissimulation."

Hamas Ready to Set Up Shop in Sudeten-Gaza

Hamas is apparently looking forward to having a brand new set of rocket launch sites in Gaza. According to WorldNet Daily, Hamas last month announced on its website:
Afula, Hadera, Beit She'an, Netanya, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and other cities will all fall within the range of the Qassam rocket. ... The implication is that this rocket, which was previously looked upon with disdain by many, will serve as the weapon of choice in the coming period of time, as the acts of suicide martyrdom served as the weapon of choice during all the previous years.
Yes, friends, this is the meaning of "Peace in our time," compliments of Ariel Chamberlain. It's enough to make one want to go out and get very "peaceful" with a squishy peace activist.

Ioannis Gatsiounis reviews The Myth of Islamic Tolerance

...education efforts have worked so effectively that many educated non-Muslims have come to believe that unflattering manifestations of Islam are aberrant. Of course these perceptions are rarely based on direct contact with the religion, for, as any outsider who has taken a closer look at Islam can attest, further inquiry produces as many unsettling questions as it does tidy answers.

Why, for instance, are many of the world's most pious and knowledgeable Muslims also the most hostile toward non-believers? Why do non-Muslims face significant discrimination, even in the Islamic world's most moderate nations? (In Malaysia last month for instance, 35 masked assailants dressed in robes attacked and partially scorched a commune led by a Muslim apostate.) This is to say nothing of the rights of women in most Muslim countries. Is it all simply a matter of interpretation (ie abuse for personal or political gain), or does the sustained prevalence of such patterns reveal something inherent about the faith?
I don't pretend to know a great deal about Islam.

I am learning more, and the more I've been learning about this faith, the more disconcerted I've become. It troubles me to learn that people who I've considered friends of mine read, and adhere to, a "holy book" which disclaims friendship with non-believers, and which teaches the importance of deception and violence.

Jawa Report is Skywalking

Apparently, my favorite "wretched hive of scum and villainy", otherwise known as The Jawa Report recently jumped up to #18 in the blog linking rankings.

We've long known the Force is strong with this one.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Osama's Godfathers

An excellent article authored by a Canadian Muslim:
The arguments in the West that organized Muslim terrorism associated with al-Qaeda and its global network can be ended through concessions are ignorant and naive. Muslim violence is independent of anything Western democracies might do to accommodate grievances that are mostly rooted in their own dismal failures to meet the modern world's political and economic challenges.

In the pre-modern world, Muslim rulers from the Ummayad dynasty in Damascus, the Abbasid synasty in Baghdad to the Ottoman sultans in Istanbul contained and destroyed Kharijites and their ideological progeny. They knew there could be no toleration of these killers who used religion as an ideological shield.

We should do the same: The modern-day Kharijites need to be eliminated by force, like their predecessors. Eventually, Muslims themselves must confront the mentality that proselytizes for violence in the name of Islam. It is a disease that mutates over time into a variant of fascism. Only through long-term commitment to reform can this disease be cured.
Amen, brother!

Friday, August 19, 2005

Bastiat on Bureaucratic Mathusianism

"I am a firm believer in the ideas of Malthus when it comes to bureaucrats. For their expansion in numbers and projects is fixed precisely by Malthus' principle that the size of the population is determined by the amount of available food. If we vote 800 million francs for government services, the bureaucrats will devour 800 million; if we give them two billion, they will immediately expand themselves and their projects up to the full amount." - Frederick Bastiat

Million Muslim March? Maybe Not...

With thanks to LGF for the tip:
The idea of a "million Muslim march" event in Lodi by Muslims to publicly denounce terrorism has officially died, say those involved.

Envisioned in late June as a response to the allegations of terrorists in Lodi's Muslim community, the idea drew the interest of Mayor John Beckman, conservative radio host Mark Williams, the Sacramento chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations and local Muslims.

Interest waned, however, when it became apparent the deep division in Lodi's Muslim community would make organizing such an event difficult if not impossible. It appears it has become impossible, as Beckman said this week the event will not be happening.
Okay, just to make it very clear to my Muslim friends, this is how mainstream America will interpret this: Muslims can't get together and agree that terrorism's bad.

Is that the right conclusion to draw? I honestly don't know. YOU HAVE TO TELL US!!! If YOU want for US to understand what this news means, you're going to have to explain it to us, in terms we can understand. If you don't think that's your responsibility, then please don't get upset if/when we draw the wrong conclusion. When your more activism brethren do something radical, we have no way of knowing whether you agree with what they're doing or not. Normally, if there's a danger that I might be tarred with another person's outrageous actions or opinions, I would tend to take my own actions to clearly distance myself from that person and his actions. If my twin brother was a violent racist claiming solidarity with me, I would take steps to make clear distinctions between the two of us. If I didn't do so, members of the public might be forgiven for assuming we were on the same page.

Cindy Sealed the Deal

A good little democrat died today, R-I-P:
I actually felt myself become a republican today. It was around 10am, when I read the latest update of the Cindy Sheehan saga in CNN.com. I then shot over to read some blogs about it, and perused the comments in some of them, which was nothing but a long series of petty (albeit entertaining) partisan bickering.

Then it happend. The good little democrat in me tied the little noose around his neck and jumped off the stool. He just couldn’t take it anymore.
As Charles Johnson noted at LGF, Mr. Randolph didn't necessarily become a republican, but he certainly did become an anti-idiotarian.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Contacting the Politburo of New London

Michelle Malkin, along with Jawa Report, note that the City of New London is going back after the people whose homes they just got done taking away from them. Now they're claiming that the residents owe them rent for living in their own homes while the dispute was being decided.

Other comments from Pejmanesque, Naked Villainy, The Loudest Cricket, Political Yen/Yang, Say Uncle, WMD, MassRight and Ghost in the Machine.

For anyone interested in contacting the Politburo of New London and its minions, may I suggest the following, but please remember that calling their cell phones will run up their limited airtime minutes and calling them after hours is generally considered impolite:
New London City Council
181 State Street
New London, CT 06320
Fax: 860-447-7971

Mayor Jane L. Glover
754 Ocean Ave
New London, CT 06320

Deputy Mayor William S. Morse
94 Golden Street
New London, CT

Councilor Jason L. Catala
476 Ocean Avenue
New London, CT

Councilor Margaret Mary Curtin
314 Ocean Ave
New London, CT 06320

Councilor Gerard J. Gaynor
50 Sherman St
New London, CT 06320

Councilor Robert Pero
16 Dell Ave
New London, CT 06320
Home: 860-447-2723
Cell: (860) 912-0191

Councilor Elizabeth Sabilia
415 Pequot Ave
New London, CT 06320
Home: (860) 437-8013
Cell: (860) 961-2622
Other: (860) 444-0144

Director of the Office of Development & Planning
Bruce Hyde, AICP
97 Lower Blvd
New London, CT 06320

Assistant Director
Charlotte Schroeder

Economic Development Coordinator
Ned Hammond
17 Bellevue Pl
New London, CT 06320

A Stab in the Heart

A very moving video from Israel on the folly of capitulating to evil.

Forty-seven years ago this September, a violent government bent on territorial domination and elimination of the Jews threatened open war against the British and French unless their demands for strategically-critical territory were met. Britain and France elected to cede the demanded territory in the hope of buying peace.

In the words of Winston Churchill, “[t]hey had to choose between war and dishonor. They chose dishonor; they will have war.”

As Churchill put it:
One pound was demanded at the pistol's point. When it was given, two pounds were demanded at the pistol's point. Finally, the dictator consented to take one pound, 17 shillings and sixpence, and the rest in promises of good will for the future.
Now, another violent government bent on territorial domination and elimination of the Jews threatens open war against the Jewish state unless their demands for strategically-critical territory are met.

I think we all know how this ends.


Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Malkin: Inside Air America


If even half of the shenanigans alleged by Air America's creditors is true, I predict some people may be going off to jail.

At the core of all this is the Air America "reorganization," which was expressly intended to allow Air America to move forward with "as few encumbrances" (i.e., as few debts) as possible.

Read it all.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

British Muslims: Can we get a little Sharia over here?

According to a joint statement issued by a large Muslim coalition in Britain:
Advocating the establishment of a Muslim Caliphate and the imposition of Sharia law are not extreme should not be considered "extreme" Muslim positions.

Justifying and validating suicide bombing is an appropriate manner of political expression.

The British government is in danger of "pandering" to "Zionist pressure."
More later.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Newsweek: President Bush is a Human Being

Looks like someone hacked the Newsweek website.

There's an article up there that looks a whole lot like a real Newsweek article, except that it presents the President, George W. Bush in an arguably positive light, reporting on the sympathy he's shown to the families of dead soldiers.

If that's a real article, somebody just made a career-limiting move over at Newsweek.

Thanks to Michelle for the tip.

High School Protest Warriors Take on the Commies

Warms your heart.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Sharia Law Takes Root in Seattle

Coming soon to a city near you. Public swimming pools of Seattle are now being segregated at the request of local Muslim activists.


Am I a liberal?

Jesse from Pandagon posted the following comment in response to my post Am I Conservative?:
So, then, why wouldn't others consider you a liberal? This is exactly what I'm talking about - it has absolutely nothing to do with if you don't meet my personal standards of liberalism, and the fact that these people who label themselves liberal will continually lay out a list of ideas and beliefs that they contend makes them liberal...while never writing about them unless someone like me writes a post like the one you're responding to.

It's kind of hilarious, but I write this post, and I get a couple dozen people rushing to tell me what a judgemental and inaccurate asshole I am...while doing the exact thing I described.
First of all, welcome to my blog and thanks for your comment. Second, my post wasn't really exactly a response to your article, as the bulk of it was written before I was aware of your post, but the timing was uncanny. Third, for the record, I never called you a "judgemental and inaccurate asshole," and I don't necessarily think you are. Having said all that, you raise some good issues.

I can't speak for you, but for many leftists it has a great deal to do with meeting an "acceptable standard of liberalism". I don't conform to the acceptable profile of a "liberal" and I don't ascribe to the mandatory set of "liberal" beliefs, so I must not be a "liberal".

Now, you've put forward a different standard--namely, whether or not I spend the balance of my time and energy presenting what are generally considered "conservative" positions or those considered "liberal".

I'll agree with you that I spend more bandwidth personally bashing certain left-wingers. That's largely because those lefties (e.g., Dean, Durbin) generate a lot more fodder. I'm in pretty good company highlighting their absurdities. Then again, I've bashed Republicans (e.g, Santorum) when I felt they deserved it.

Further, I definitely spend more time pushing against left-wing issues. I don't deny that. I do that because I consider leftism and political correctness to be serious threats to this country. Though I disagree with certain issues which are considered "conservative," I don't consider a ban on gay marriage or limitations on abortion to be any sort of threat to our democracy. Even though I'm against running big government deficits, I'm confident we'll ultimately weather their effects. What I'm not at all confident of is whether or not we will ultimately weather the effects of rampant political correctness and multiculturalism run amok. An example of this would be, for example, folks who would try to posthumously morph a fallen soldier into a martyr for a cause he'd almost certainly find repugnant. That's what concerns me and animates me, and that's what I write about. Being anti-leftist and anti-PC doesn't make me either a "conservative" or a "Republican shill."

Raquel Welch is Still Hot

At the ripe old age of 64, the lovely and eloquent Raquel Welch still looks better than most women have ever looked.

In her interview with Neil Cavuto, Raquel had some very harsh words for those who condemn our troops, including but not limited to the much less attractive--and much less sensible--Hanoi Jane Fonda.
CAVUTO: But many in the Hollywood community have criticized this war. Does that get back, do you think, to the men and women?

WELCH: So much so. That is what I learned when I went to Vietnam. They heard every single newscast. They heard every derogatory thing about what they were doing. And here is the thing, we all value our privileges. And among them, free speech. But it is kind of a terrible paradox when the same rights that they fought for, this free speech, the freedom, is turned around and used against them.

That seems to me unconscionable. It seems to me unfair. And if you have any sense of fairness in your heart, I don't know how you cannot support the troops. I don't know how you can speak out against somebody when they are in the line of fire. I don't mean you can't disagree in a way, but I think it is the manner in which you do so and how far you go with it.
Beautiful and smart. I think I'm in love...

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Am I a conservative?

Pandagon takes issue with the people who disclaim conservatism as a philosophy, and yet are still too far right for his tastes:
Glenn Reynolds pioneered it, but a whole host of other conservative bloggers (Hottentotten, Remainder L. Simon, etc.) have perfected it - they're entirely Republican/conservative shills, yet adamantly declare when it's convenient that they aren't conservative because of a position they haven't dusted off since the last time they wanted to prove they weren't conservative.

Here's what you do - come up with a series of phrases and/or topic areas that let you consistently link to conservative blogs or sources approvingly, while simultaneously pretending that you maintain "independent credibility" and are simply "examining the evidence before you". The perfect example of this comes from the master of Disinglennuousness - "Disturbing, if true".

Next up, forget that you're trying to pretend you aren't conservative, and assault liberals mercilessly. Claiming that liberals hate freedom (or, at least, the "freedom" you're obsessed with), focusing on the War on Terror exclusively as a battle against liberal complaints, or else just picking (a) particular Democrat(s) as "the reason I can't support the Democrat Party in good conscience" are all good ways of doing this, but the key is to pretend that the Democratic Party has just gone too far for your sensitive soul - even if the Democratic Party is symbolized by the clerk at the department store who overcharged you for your Izod.
Ya know, I consider myself a liberal, but I think I'm probably the only person on the planet who thinks that. I certainly don't take on the mantle of "conservatism" or "right wing," even though others have tagged me with that label. As to whether that label is deserved, I submit for your review the following:

I can't stand closed-minded people, and in particular people who who make decisions first and look at facts later, including but not limited to those who would dislike someone simply on the basis of his or her race. In general, I have severe problems with those who make decisions based on emotions rather than facts and reason.

I believe everyone should be treated equally before the law.

I believe more people should be naked more often, even old people and fat people, but particularly young female people.

I have no opinion on whether ending the life of a human baby in a womb is murder. I understand there is general consensus that ending the life of a newborn child is murder, and I question whether there's truly a logical distinction between the two situations, but unlike most Americans, I haven't come to a conclusion as of yet.

I have no problem with people of the same gender living together, exploiting one another's orifices and/or protuberances for their own enjoyment, and/or having legally-recognized lifetime relationships together. In fact, I have no problem with three or more individuals of varying genders, or even varying species, moving in together and doing pretty much whatever they mutually decide they want to do with one another, so long as I don't have to watch and/or pay for it.

It pains me that America has developed a permanent underclass, brought on largely by the pitiful state of the government schools which serve the America's poorest communities. I believe we need serious education reform NOW rather than later.

I believe that government programs, even social welfare programs, with a solid, proven track record of helping dependent and helpless people become productive, independent citizens should be expanded, no matter which party or group originally came up with them. I don't have a moral problem with the fact that certain people will have to be taxed, at least in the short run, in order to pay for such programs.

I believe that government social welfare programs which help those Americans with no hope of surviving without outside help should be fully funded. As above, I don't have a problem with the fact that certain people will have to be taxed to pay for this.

I'm not convinced that the invasion of Iraq was a good idea.

I believe America's borders should be wide open to those who honestly wish to come here to live peacefully, work and contribute.

I believe very strongly in freedom of speech and of the press. I believe we should generally err on the side of freedom where there is real doubt.

I'm not convinced that there's a problem with the "sexualization" of American popular culture, even to the extent that it increases the awareness of children to the issue of sexuality. I think there's a big difference between a child learning that "people have sex and enjoy it" and a child deciding "I can do whatever I want without paying any price."

I'm not convinced that there's a problem with the "culture of violence" which American popular culture allegedly fosters, again, even to the extent that it affects children and may tend to desensitize them to violence and death. See above re: sexuality.

I believe that tax cuts should not be enacted without corresponding spending cuts when it can be shown that they weaken the long-term financial health of the country.

I don't have any love for huge multinational corporations. Corporations exist for the benefit of their shareholders. They're not citizens of this country and they don't have "rights."

I believe that we should protect the environment.

I believe that it is vital that we reduce mankind's, and in particular America's, dependence on petroleum, and that we develop alternate energy resources.

I believe that the cause of "free trade uber alles" is an overly-simplistic philosophy, and that we should consider our interests as humans and as Americans, and not just as consumers, when we discuss our trade policies.

I ask you, is the above list that of a right-wing conservative? I really don't see it. Comments would be very welcome.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Has it really been TWO WEEKS?

Apparently so. In fact, 15 DAYS have passed since the Air America scandal broke without a single word from the New York Times. As you might have guessed, the bloggers have been all over this from the get-go.

For anyone not up to speed, one of the guys in Air America's second management team, a guy by the name of Evan Cohen, arranged for a Boys and Girls Club to loan Air America just a little under $900,000. The Boys and Girls Club subsequently went under. Air America then got rid of Cohen and restructured its management, and now denies any knowledge of what happened to the money as well as as any obligation to repay the "loan." AA claims that none of the other members of management or ownership knew about the loan and that Cohen essentially incurred the repayment obligation in the name of the previous ownership/management team, rather than the current team.

Yeah, yeah... another right-wing smear campaign built on unsupportable lies and innuendoes, right?

If so, then someone needs to explain why Air America is under investigation by not only the City of New York (that bastion of Republicanism) but also New York Attorney General Eliot Sptizer (a Democrat)?

The facts of this story have been out there for two weeks now, and the mainstream media's been almost totally silent. If there's no THERE there, then the MSM should step up to the plate and clear the good name of a wrongly-impugned media company. Either way, there's no reasonable excuse whatsoever for a media blackout on this story.

Suppose the facts were a bit different. Suppose Rush Limbaugh organized a charity event for a bunch of poor kids and then "loaned" the proceeds to his EIB network, after which the charity collapsed. Suppose that Limbaugh then claimed that he did not have any personal obligation to repay the loan because the loan was to his network rather than to him personally. Is there any CHANCE IN HELL that the story would stay quiet for two DAYS, much less TWO WEEKS?

Not one, friends, and we all know it.

Why is that, I wonder?