Saturday, July 29, 2006

McCain's Son Jimmy Enlists

CNN Article

This one will be interesting to watch. The linked article is actually "fair and balanced". Points out some facts on both sides, doesn't really tell us what to think. The media loves McCain when he panders left, they of course hate him when he panders right. Somehow, they can watch Hillary pander as far to the right as anyone, but that never bother them a bit. I suppose they have faith where her heart truly is (deep in the ditch on the left side) ... where with McCain, they just aren't sure, and even though he is willing to "pander for power", which gives them hope, they have a sense of foreboding that all that time as a POW, the Annapolis years, the family history, and the apparent actual religious beliefs probably means that he is a conservative at heart. He appears to even have character, a quality that no liberal can stomach.

I suspect that they will find some way to demonize poor Jimmy. Maybe he was at some wild party, maybe he was too fresh with a girl or drove wild. Maybe he smoked pot. Maybe he didn't do anything but someone will be willing to claim he did. Those things are all of course GREAT if he is a Democrat (he can even molest and kill the girl and claim to just be driving while drunk and be a sitting Senator if he was a Democrat) ... BUT, his name could be easily drug through the mud badly somehow given that he is McCain's son. I hope not, I hate to see the MSM and the left behave like the MSM and the left to young Marines, but they will be developing some hatred on this one, especially if they are disappointed and the Republicans maintain control of the Senate.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Finally Consistency

I often observe that liberals lack consistency, but I'm beginning to understand that is only on the intellectual and character front. The juxtaposition this week of the visit by Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, along with the John Bolton hearings gives us a couple of points to plot.

al-Maliki addressed a joint session of congress this week and gave an excellent speech on what anyone that wants success in Iraq would have to want; the continued support of the US until a stable security situation can be reached. Naturally, the MSM and the Democrats didn't want to hear is message on that front, nor hear any of his claims of progress. They saw it as a better opportunity to bash Bush, so they castigated al-Maliki for not standing up for Israel, and boycotted the speech! None of them are idiot enough to think that the head of a Shiite Arab country that needs to show that they are not a puppet of the US could possibly stand with Israel against Hezbollah. They pandered to the weak minded among the Jewish vote in the US, and of course did what they could to bash Bush while not helping either the US troops or the Iraqi people. A typical performance.

Now on to the Bolton hearings. Alan Dershowitz, a self described liberal Democrat, but ALSO Jewish,writes in an excellent op-ed :

Now, there's John Bolton, who follows in that tradition with distinction. Were he not to be confirmed as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations at this crucial juncture it would send a powerful message to the international community that Senate Democrats do not stand behind our policy in the Middle East. It would be seen as undercutting American policy toward Israel. Even if that were a misunderstanding, it would have a devastating impact on the world's perception of America's solidarity with Israel.


On one hand, the Democrats give the back of the hand to the leader of a country that American blood and treasure has given a chance at democracy, while they claim "defense of Israel" as the higher good. With the other hand, they seek to stop a nomination for Ambassador to the UN of a man that even left-wingers that actually care about Israel want to protect. It would appear very inconsistent.

I come to realize that liberals actually ARE consistent about what matters to them. Emotions, how they feel. They hate Bush, that is all-consuming, they really don't care who is helped or hurt in their blind rage. Islamic fundamentalist blood thirsty terrorists can be aided and Israel or US Troops can suffer great loss but if in their calculation "it looks bad for Bush", that counts as a "win". They have no principles, no higher meaning beyond "if it feels good", so doing anything that they perceive as damaging Bush is "right" because it feels right, and it is actually consistent in their model of life.

Using a UN Shield

The statement by UN Secretary General that the Israeli bombing of a UN observer station "appeared to be deliberate" was widely reported and not questioned very much in the MSM.

It requires a bit of searching or watching some "right wing biased" news sources to find that Hezbollah was using the post as a "human shield" and firing rockets from right on top of it. Full Article

"The closest artillery has landed within 2 meters (sic) of our position and the closest 1000 lb aerial bomb has landed 100 meters (sic) from our patrol base. This has not been deliberate targeting, but rather due to tactical necessity."

Those words, particularly the last sentence, are not-so-veiled language indicating Israeli strikes were aimed at Hezbollah targets near the post, said Maj.-Gen. MacKenzie.

"What that means is, in plain English, 'We've got Hezbollah fighters running around in our positions, taking our positions here and then using us for shields and then engaging the (Israeli Defence Forces)," he said.

That would mean Hezbollah was purposely setting up near the UN post, he added. It's a tactic Maj.-Gen. MacKenzie, who was the first UN commander in Sarajevo during the Bosnia civil war, said he's seen in past international missions: Aside from UN posts, fighters would set up near hospitals, mosques and orphanages.


We and Israel stand and fight forces that purposely use religious shrines, hospitals, and UN Observer posts to shield their activity. Beyond this, we are expected to work with a UN organization so corrupt that it tacitly approves of the use of it's own observers as shields by condemning the forces that are purposely sending rockets in on random civilian positions. The MSM in the US and the Democrats sit by completely complicit in the whole situation and cheer on Hezbollah. Welcome to the 21st century.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

American Dream Initiative

The Democrats have rolled out what they call their "American Dream Initiative" which on NPR they said was "to give everyone a shot at the middle class", to which one of my more witty friends replied, "yes, and guarantee being middle class to the wealthy".

Supposedly this is something like the Republican "Contract With America" that Democrats assailed as the "Contract ON America". It worked for the republican's, they won the house in '94, and it worked for the country, they drug Bill Clinton kicking and screaming to a balanced budget, for which he promptly took the credit and left the Republican Congress with the blame for cutting the rate of growth in Medicare. Of course Clinton, the Democrats, and the media were happy to claim "Republicans Cut Medicare.

For those of you that can't quite get the difference, if I'm getting 7% wage increases every year and my boss decided that 4% would be good enough, that is cutting the rate of growth in my salary. If I turn around and claim "my salary was cut", you would be able to understand that I was lying. Somehow Democrats and the media saying the same thing relative to the rate of growth being cut in government programs never get called liars.

Note, for the lefties in the crowd that have a lot of trouble with the concept of truth, this is an ACTUAL lie, not "a failure to predict the future correctly" like Bush (and everyone else) saying "Iraq has WMD", or me claiming "buy WalMart Stock, it is going to go up". Presumably, everyone with a tiny bit of knowledge understands that cutting the rate of growth is NOT a cut, so when they say it is, they are lying. If I make a statement about WMD or a stock that I believe to be true, but it isn't, that is known as being wrong. There was once a difference between being wrong and lying, but that is just one more distinction that the left has decided to blur to fool the sheep.

I'm thinking that renaming the American DECLINE Initiative might be more accurate. It is always possible to have more income equality by reducing the amount of income. It is sometimes said that "we can't all be at the top", but unfortunately, the inverse isn't true, we CAN all effectlvely be at the bottom (or at least 99% of us, except the ruling hunta).

Monday, July 24, 2006

Most Jobs Since Reagan


ST. PAUL—June was an extremely strong month for job growth in the state with an increase of 14,700 jobs, according to figures released today by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). When added to the upwardly revised job gain of 3,300 in May and the 14,900 new jobs in April, the second quarter 2006 experienced a total job gain of 32,900—10 percent of the nation’s growth and the highest quarterly gain since the first quarter of 1984.


In fairness, this WAS reported "a little" in some of the MN papers. Generally, the economy now is better than it has been since Reagan, but much like the media in the '80s, it is very hard to tell. When a Republican is in the WH, good news is reported very little, and when it is, it always has some caveats like "it isn't as good as it looks", "not everyone is taking part in this goodness", and "it isn't going to be good very long". All of which are just as true with a Democrat in the WH, but for some reason the good news gets a lot more reporting and the caveats are always missing.

Why do Democrats get surprised in elections lately? Because the bulk of the public never hears the good news until the Republicans start doing campaign ads, and at the same time they find out that the Democrats would love to kill that golden goose of econimic progress with higher taxes as soon as they get in office. Of course, when the Republican ads point out that piece of truth, they are "negative". A Democrat will never actually ADMIT that they are going to raise taxes on pretty much everyone, they will couch it as "raise taxes on a couple rich guys".

Kerry On Israel / Lebanon

We really could have had a great president, according to what he had to say in Detroit, as quoted from the Detroit News

U.S. Sen. John Kerry, D- Mass., who was in town Sunday to help Gov. Jennifer Granholm campaign for her re-election bid, took time to take a jab at the Bush administration for its lack of leadership in the Israeli-Lebanon conflict.

"If I was president, this wouldn't have happened," said Kerry during a noon stop at Honest John's bar and grill in Detroit's Cass Corridor.


They claim that Bush is arrogant? Wow, Kerry would have been able to stop the conflict between Israel and her neighbors. Like all good Democrats, he didn't say how.

During the campaign, his VP candidate, Edwards stated that if he and John Kerry were elected, the lame would walk. It was unclear clear if he also expected to raise the dead, since he made his claim in regard to Reeve who was already dead when he made itThe Lame Will Walk
If we do the work that we can do in this country, the work that we will do when John Kerry is president, people like Christopher Reeve are going to walk, get up out of that wheelchair and walk again."


But wait, Edwards the lawyer channeled dead babies.

She said at 3, 'I'm fine.' She said at 4, 'I'm having a little trouble, but I'm doing OK.' Five, she said, 'I'm having problems.' At 5:30, she said, 'I need out.'


She speaks to you through me and I have to tell you right now -- I didn't plan to talk about this -- right now I feel her. I feel her presence. She's inside me, and she's talking to you.


These guys were the Democrats Presidential canidates two years ago. Peace on earth, communication with the dead, and the lame rising up and walking. Wow, no matter the media hates Bush when we could have had wonderful guys like that.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Collapse

I have finally managed to slog all the way through Jared Diamond's paean to pessimism, "Collapse: How Societies choose to Fail or Succeed". The academic in me would suggest that the slog is worth it, the person that has a life would suggest "not".

First the "big messages". While Jared wants us to see him as an "objective scientist" and "politically neutral", it is pretty clear that he is a pessimistic greenie lefty, and in general, pessimistic greenie lefties love this book. He lists 8 categories of environmental damage that are critical; deforestation, soil problems, water, overhunting, overfishing, negative effects of introduced species, human population growth and increased per-capita impact of people. He then has a framework of which environmental damage is also one element that round out the collapse; climate change, hostile neighbors and friendly trade partners.

He then takes a number of case studies; Montana, Easter Island, PItcarin and Henderson Islands, The Anasazi Indians, Myans, Vikings on Greenland, Rawanda, Dominican Republic and Hati, China and Australia. He goes into these in GREAT detail, discusses his many factors and where and possibly why they either did or are making poor decisions, and all the way through works to tie it to the modern world.

Like a lot of liberal thinking, there is a lot of pessimism, a lot of critical pointing at current problems, but not a real lot of clear statement of what should actually be done that would make things better. Although he says many times he ISN'T a pessimist, but a "cautious optimist", if he has a "plan", it would basically entail, zero population growth, reduction in standard of living in the first world countries, and very little advancement of existing first world standards to the third world. Since it is pretty clear to anyone watching that isn't happening, we are toast (well, maybe "steak", but more on that later).

He definitely doesn't see technology or globalization as "savior's", and in fact believes that they will make it all worse and increase the likelihood of the rapid decline and demise of the whole world. Like a true liberal though, he doesn't practice anything of what he preaches ... He has two children, lives in Southern CA complaining about traffic, flys all over the globe on jets and vacations in Montana every summer. The "politicians" (by which it is pretty clear he means Republicans) are "uninformed and short-sighted", but Jared gets to keep his "first world +" lifestyle ... he has earned it, his heart is in the right place, and he has clearly told folks that there are a whole lot of problems that someone else should take care of while he is driving to teach class in Southern CA, or fly fishing in Montana.

It is the "subtext" of this book that I actually like, it gives a bit of a view into the liberal soul that they work so hard to deny. Jared is a "comb-over guy", and as a person that has learned to enjoyed and parry the barbs of being bald since 21, I'm always a bit suspicious of "real message" when dealing with a comb-over guy. My reaction to comb-overs is that they are usually able to "fool themselves and believe everyone else is fooled as well", kind of like a dog or child that hides there eyes, and believes since they can't see anyone they can't be seen either.

It is pretty clear that Diamond doesn't see any difference between Christianity, Paganism. Freedom, Private Property, or any other "value". All "values" are weighed against his God of mother earth, found wanting, and the "intelligent" will learn to sacrifice those on the alter of environmentalism in hopes they will be granted survival. No "dominion over the earth" for Jared.

He seems to be fascinated with cannibalism as an "adaptation", and somewhat as the ultimate way to prove your "superiority" to your enemies, or "the rich". This touching passage brings it home (p152 for those that think I make this stuff up):

"The most direct sign of cannibalism at the site is that dried human feces, found in the house's hearth and still well preserved after nearly a thousand years in that dry climate, proved to contain human muscle protein, which is absent from normal human feces, even from the feces of people with injured and bleeding intestines. This makes it probable that whomever attacked that site killed the inhabitants, cracked open their bones, boiled their flesh in pots, scattered the bones, and relieved themselves by depositing feces on that hearth had actually consumes the flesh of their victims".

This is a very popular liberal book. While he isn't willing to be completely direct, the message is there that at some point there will be global class warfare, resulting in the slaughter of "the rich" ... and just maybe in their consumption by the attackers. I suppose since "murder" and "cannibalism" are just other old tired "values" to be cast aside, one could view this as "progress" over the evils of religion, technology, and the corrupt western culture that has raped the superior and real god of "mother earth", the environmentalists deity.

Are there dangers of environmental problems, lack of food, water, etc? Sure. Are they anywhere close to as important and insoluble by technology and easily mapped to historical scenarios as Diamond claims? Only the good "global warming as a religion" sheep are likely to buy into even part of that line of reasoning.

I suppose once one takes responsibility for ultimate justice out of God's hands some ultimate putdown like eating your enemy and crapping on their floor resonates with what is left of your denied spirit. In the physical world though, it brings to mind the old cannibal putdown; "The meat of your mother sticks between my teeth". Ah yes, the worship of man and material nature, the very flower of humanity.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Firefox Extension Heaven

For people who have "slightly more than one computer", keeping your bookmarks up to date on all the boxes can be a major pain. I try to stick with a "minimal number of machines" myself:

1). Main Thinkpad Laptop - 50% of total work here, goes with me most places.
2). Main Home Desktop - Current location, some work, some home, photos, music, critical machine.
3). Mac - Video editing, iTunes, iPhoto ... a must have.
4). Backup Desktop at work, dual boot to Linux - Laptops die on occasion. Can't be sitting still then. At other times, technical currency on Linux.
5,6 and 7 ... One new IBM re-furbished 1.8GHZ that just followed me home for $150. 2 machines that used to be my sons but are now running some grid computing stuff, keeping disks spinning for stored video, and available should any of my relatives need a newer machine. These 3 might be slightly less easy to justify than the "critical 4".

I'm slightly embarrassed to not currently have a Linux box up and running at home. I plan to remedy that shortly with an ubuntu installation that I have high hopes for.

On to the heavenly extension
Google Sync which allows you to keep your bookmarks up to date between as many computers as you want, and even better have the browser re-configure to your latest tabs / pages when you switch machines. SWEEET!! So far working flawlessly and I'm very impressed and appreciative.

Now if I can just find "the same thing" for Thunderbird.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Senate Race Over in MN

The Star Trib MN Poll would seem to show that the Senate race in MN is all but over and Klobuchar is the winner. The poll shows her ahead by 19 points, 50 to 31%. Clearly Republicans should just give up. Not me, it is time to send in a few hundred to the Kennedy campaign. I think his chances are good.

Why? Amy is already advertising on top of the constant media anti-Republican anti-Bush drumbeat. It was a foregone conclusions in '02 and in '04 that "Republicans were going down". Why not? The only kind of information that people hear is negative for Republicans.

As we get to Labor Day, Republicans have to come out and get their opponents negatives up, AND indicate what Republicans are for. They will of course be accused of "negative campaigning", but when the media spends all the time working to get Republican negatives up, they have a lot of work to do in a short time once they start running ads. The Democrats get to use the media, but since the media does the same thing all the time, it loses credibility.

The MN Poll has been wrong a lot in the last 30 years, and strangely enough it is always "wrong to the left". It is doubtful that Republicans are going to believe much of anything that they read in the Red Star, but hopefully this will lull the Democrats in to keeping their money in their pockets and assuming that they have it won. The Red Star is their paper after all, they usually believe what they read there.

High School at CNN



The press liked to do a lot of hand wringing while Clinton was scrutinized for ejaculating on the help at the office as in "why are we wasting our time on this"?

We have war between Israel and Hezbollah, bombs in Lebanon,Iran pulling the strings and attempting to be nuclear power, and a host of other newsworthy items like a successful shuttle mission, heat and fires, N Korea and missiles, and I'm sure a ton of other items if I was to think for a moment. Bush saying "shit" is a picture HEADLINE for HOURS on CNN, and the day after, they are trying to keep the story afloat by adding in some candid shots they managed to catch of him eating.

This is a press that is unbiased? This is a TOP STORY? Only if you are some deranged Bush hater with a sense of perspective stuck in the 9th grade, and the intellectual fascinations of Beavis and Butthead. There is one other potential. You are so fixated on "hurting Bush" and enough of a student of history to realize that the Watergate tapes damaged Nixon really more with the "religious right" because he was "swearing on the tapes", and the religious folks "thought he was nicer than that". To the liberal press, Watergate is Easter and Christmas for rolled into one, so they are quite familiar with all aspects of their holy event.

Will it work? No, because liberals don't understand swearing. Nixon regularly took God's name in vain, that is what offended Christians. From a liberal point of view, "swearing = crude = bad = like chewing with mouth open" ... so let's point that all out, that must be what the Christians don't like. Of course, to a Christian, taking God's name in vain is WAY different from other "crude language", and isn't of any significance. The liberals who don't even fathom the concept of "sin" and really can't think of "wrong" other than being a Republican, just figure those Christian rubes must not like "swearing", so lets make a big deal out of it and maybe it will hurt Bush.

I tend to think that the real reason for this is just another symptom of "Bush derangement syndrome". Their hatred is just so out of touch that they can't help themselves, so they print it, but the "let's hurt him with his base" idea was at least an interesting flicker across the brain cells. There are some that actually believe that the press isn't biased?

Friday, July 14, 2006

Kurzweil

Ray Kurzweil was at St Thomas in St Paul Wednesday night and I was lucky enough to get to listen to his talk. I'd rate it as maybe the fastest 90min lecture that I've sat through. I've Blogged on "The Singularity Is Near" previously. Ray is a strict materialist atheist that is EXTREMELY optimistic about technology. As readers of this Blog know, while I believe in realism, I'd much prefer to listen and read someone that errs on the side of optimism than pessimism. There is great plenty of that.

He discussed "designer drugs". Formerly we took compounds that seemed to do what we want (lower BP, decrease pain, remove fluids, etc) and messed with them vs trial and error. We are now able to look at how systems in the body work and design drugs that affect the systems in the way we want. Two examples are a pill that prevents the body from storing fat, and one that raises the HDL cholesterol enough to actually clean out arteries. These two drugs are supposed to be on the market in less than five years and should radically change health care and how good people look at the beach.

He believes that all his fantastic predictions for medicine, nanotech, high speed computing and AI are in fact "conservative" even though they sound off the wall. Two examples of his predictions, are that he predicted the internet in the mid-90's and a computer beating a human and chess before the millennium. In the early '90s, he was being mocked by people saying they didn't see any internet, and the chess programs were terrible compared to even a master level human. Both predictions came to pass right on schedule.

I don't tend to believe that many of his predictions will come true, BUT, "hopeful" is very nice to see these days since there is so much of "hopeless". I believe Ray is very much close to the truth than those who are sure that nothing good is going to happen.

Fahrenheit 911

I figured that a Netflix rental 2-years after the fuss shouldn't line Michael Moore's coffers too much, so I finally forced myself to sit through it. My biggest impression is "an orgy of innuendo", the movie really comes out and says very little. It strongly insinuates that Bush knew of 911 in advance because of ties with the Saudis in advance maybe even ties with the Bin Ladin family. The "points" are all made with lots of music for the "appropriate" emotional response ... No doubt Moore enjoyed "Triumph of the Will".

Richard Clark, the book writer that "could tell Condi didn't know who Bin Ladin was when he talked to her" shows up on tape. He is a good source, Condi is on tape on a ton of radio programs talking about the threat from Bin Ladin years before Clark was able to expertly "read her face". With great spies like that, it is no wonder the Clinton administration did such a bang up job on terrorists. Somehow no mention of the Clinton history.

Afghanistan might have been mostly about building a big oil pipeline for UniCal ... maybe Bush had ties to the Taliban too. But the general message is sort of made that "any kind of war is bad" ... so maybe Bush shouldn't have responded anywhere at all.

Iraq, apparently under Saddam is portrayed as a relative garden spot, hard to tell that the Iraqi people would have any problems under Saddam. Bush may have attacked them because of his Daddy, likely for Haliburton or maybe because he just wants to keep the whole US in fear. It could be all of the above, but the music, the tone, and the words let you know that Bush is sinister and wrong. Iraq is of course "like Vietnam" ... With desert rather than jungle, Muslims rather than Buddhists, and oil rather than rice ... "Like" in any case.

The end of the movie gives gives the exaggerated idea that the military is a "place for the poor". It is much more a "place for the rural and southern". No matter, he leads on to the "essential liberal assertion about America" ... no class mobility, corrupt a place where "decent people don't have a chance". The corrupt US system is massively rigged against the poor and black, even Al Gore wants to disenfranchise them. Oh yes, and of course we all know that Bush stole the election of 2K ... "a bunch of independent studies" show that Gore won ... only NONE of the studies by even liberal papers, universities, or other groups that were even remotely following any sort of repeatable procedure showed that. Mikes own study did though, so that must be it.

We do live in a great country where a massively overweight multi-millionaire can make a piece of political propaganda in an election year and have it treated like a "documentary" by the MSM. No matter, Bush won again, and we have been pretty much spared listening to Moore since. Thanks be to God!

Monday, July 10, 2006

Waterloo John Deere



My wife and I spent the day today at the John Deere tractor assembly plant in Waterloo IA watching her brothers 8330 4x4 tractor built on the assembly line as part of their "Gold Key Program". Giant facility, over 1K workers, lots of automation, and a lot of huge tractors. I need to get a blog written on the book "1776" that I just finished, but suffice to say that the manufacturing capability that we take so much for granted wasn't available in 1776, and for long after ... Henry Ford in the early 20th century kicked it off. It works very well today.

We had a retired assembly worker assinged to the four of us all day long. We got some heavy duty steel to wear around our shoes, safety glasses and gloves, and were able to mix right in with the assembly workers on the line. We got to put on a decal, attach a fender, put the lug nuts in on a wheel, and the brother-in-law got to start it up and drive it off the assembly line. An excellent piece of customer relations by John Deere, and a very enjoyable day for me.

It again reminded me of how human the supposed "faceless corporation" is. I've traveled to a number of different sites in this country and overseas in my own 28-year corporate career, and there are remarkable similarities. Corporations are all made up of pretty normal people, generally from a lot of fairly humble backgrounds. From the levels of people that I've been able to get to know in some depth over a so-far ("bottom" to upper mid-level), they are generally pretty dedicated, have a decent level of persistence and have a basic understanding of what business means ... providing a quality service or product in a manner that a profit can be made so stockholders are willing to keep investing in the business, and customers are willing to keep buying.

They also tend to generally be "nice people", a great part of that I suspect coming from they see the "system as working" since they are playing a part in it, and are very willing to be friendly with certainly customers, but quite commonly other people in general, and often even competitors. That doesn't mean they don't compete, any more than baseball players shaking hands after the game means that the game is somehow "rigged". It means that they understand that competition and alternatives are key to our (and increasingly the world) economy.

A marked contrast to the "angry left", a few of which even manage to work inside companies. Since they are pretty much convinced that "everything is broken" ... Economy, society, family, gas prices, business in general, stock market, foreign policy ... you name it, they can only have any sort of relationship with you if you are as mad as they are. Seeing any glass at all as "half full", or "improving", let alone "good enough" is in direct conflict with their world view, and enough to label you as someone not worthy of their association.

There still is real manufacturing in the USA with at least a few thousand jobs that I got to see personally, and since the orders for the tractors are backed up 5-6 months, it seems to be going very well, no matter what the media might like to tell you.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Lay Brings Out Some Honesty from Left

I'm always amazed when the folks on the left accidently lift the veil of what makes them tick just a bit and we get to see inside. Enron and Ken Lay (along with Bush and Cheney) are cases where they open that veil. As I heard on the NPR story, while the left has endless sympathies for terrorists and criminals of all stripes except Republican. Once their strange form of "morality", based on their own model of "what feels good is good" kicks in, they realize that revenge "feels good", so why not torture?

I know, some of you are thinking, he has to be making this up, but although the author decides to euphamize it as "chi-chi", he clearly comes to the conclusion that torture is what he would really have liked to see happen to Ken Lay.
Post:Ken Lay's Last Evasion

This quote shows that deep down, your average liberal understands. His own editorial should be more than enough to notice that yes, savagery isn't really below the surface at all when it comes to the folks that the liberals hate. They are ready to attack and torture as soon as they get their shot.

but so many people may well have responded to the news of Lay's untimely death by feeling cheated, by saying that death wasn't good enough for him, by sensing a frustrated craving for revenge burning in their backbrains like a fire in a tire dump.

Is it possible that a micron below the surface of our liberal and enlightened beliefs lurks savagery? Was the French Enlightenment wrong about our essential goodness, and were the medieval churchmen right about our innate depravity?


The liberal brain is focused on feeling. It is how things make them feel that counts as morality, and in general, the feeling impulse will take us back to childhood. They didn't like the idea that their parents, schoolteachers, or pastors had "power". Power to make them feel "less than perfect", or to force them to do things that didn't make them feel good. They also noticed that their parents and other in authority "had more". They built up feeling of resentment for people that they saw as "having more". Almost always they see however those people got more as "wrong". In a situation like Ken Lay, they find their feelings to be validated, so they are allowed to express their outrage.

Although liberals try to elevate feelings to the level of the spritual and sublime, feelings tend to be quite primitive. For the author of this piece to use the analogy of "a primitive tribe" to express his desire to torture Ken Lay is a pretty transparent symbol.

Note that the very same person would very likely abhor Abu Grahb, Guantanemo, the death penalty in the US, or any other treatment of other prisoners that they would find to be less than commendable. How can this be? They see Ken Lay (or Bush/Cheney) as "inhuman", but they don't assign that view to terrorists or other criminals. Why? The liberal is God, there is no higher power, and any inkling of someone that really is a "higher power" ... through political position, money, or something else, and isn't in agreement with the liberal is "evil" ... but a criminal or terrorist that isn't directly seen as attacking the liberal is not a threat. They are seen as "lower status", or even "victims" and thus worthy of good treatment, understanding, and compassion.

Liberalism is the essence of humanity. We are naturally liberals. We have to be somehow "saved" ... in some combination of a religous, intellectual, philisophical, or phycological way. Even then, we remain at core liberals and if left to our own devices will return to primitive feelings and rage, just like some "primitive tribe". Intellectual honesty is not a commoodity that is commonly associated with liberals, but cases like this column where the truth boils to the surface and is expressed directly allow us to understand why liberals behave the way they do.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Coleman

MN Senator Norm Coleman stopped by at work today and spoke to a large conference room with 150-200 people, packed to the rafters. Being a high technology company, the audience seemed to be 90%+ supportive. His 15min talk was pretty much centered on innovation, technology, education, and global competitiveness. He took questions for 15min, they were all courteous, and covered the topics of making the tax cuts permanent, intellectual property / China / India, health care, and American's willingness to continue to take risks as in the space program.

The most memorable part of his talk was as he mentioned that as he meets with Mexican leaders they complain about being undercut by China and India, as he meets with Chinese and Indian leaders they complain about being undercut by Vietnam, Brazil, and Russia. The point is that if one wants to race to the bottom as low cost producer for low skill and increasingly medium skill jobs, there are plenty of folks ahead in the race. We don't want to be in the kind of standard of living that the countries in that race are in, so we want to keep racing for the top of the best innovators with the best technology, it is a tough race, but the prizes are worth it.

As he answered the questions, the first thing that struck me was how non-partisan his comments were ... he talked about "working with my colleagues on the other side of the aisle", or "my colleagues on the other side of the aisle are coming to understand this more and more". Yes, it could be taken as "patronizing", but certainly not as the mean and nasty that Republicans are portrayed at in the media or we regularly hear from Democrats.

The second thing is how good a job he did of sticking to the Republican value of taking responsibility and not blaming others. There was no "blame the media" from him, it was "we haven't done a good job of communicating on tax cuts and Medicare part D'. Never mind that the MSM is hammering away every day with every negative to Republican story they can come up with, Coleman understands that complaining about it isn't going to change it, and realizes that no matter how difficult it might be, guys like him have to do the job. Gratifying, one is happy to stand up and applaud that kind of understanding and acceptance of the way things are.

It was a great opportunity to see a US Senator at close range, and he lived up to every expectation. A different and enjoyable way to spend 30min of the work day.

Short History of Bush the Divider

The following quoted from
Frontpage discussion between David Horowitz and Peter Beinhart relative to "soft and hard liberals". The discussion is a nice short synapsis of how difficult it is to support the typical Democrat / MSM synthesis that "Bush is the divider, and Iraq is the dividing point".

In your view, the problem we are discussing is not really a problem created by liberals and leftists. It is – like many other problems as you see them – a dilemma created by George Bush.

You regard Bush as the divider, and the declaration of war in Iraq as the division point. But how much reality is there in this claim? The use of force in Iraq was authorized by both parties and by UN Resolution 1441, which was a war ultimatum. (This is not a conservative view. It was so described by Hans Blix, who of course is a Swedish socialist, in his book Disarming Iraq). 
The ultimatum deadline for Saddam was set for December 7, 2002. Saddam failed to meet the deadline, in fact did not take it seriously (again, this is the judgment of Blix). This was the 17 UN Security Council Resolution he had basically ignored. The United States and Britain felt that 17 was more than enough and to fail to enforce a war ultimatum would have created a very dangerous situation. But three of the veto powers on the Security Council refused to join America and Britain in enforcing the ultimatum they had signed, leaving it to Bush and Blair to go it alone. These are the facts.

The reason there was no Security Council support for enforcing the ultimatum is that France, Russia and China were actually allies of Saddam who had armed him to the teeth and probably helped him to squirrel his WMDs to Syria just before the war broke out.

Nancy Pelosi began the Democratic attacks on this war on April 13, 2003, six weeks after it started, and just four and a half months after the Democrats in Congress had voted overwhelmingly to authorize the use of force against Saddam. By June, the Democratic Party leadership was in full attack mode over the trivial Niger issue, calling the commander-in-chief a liar who had gone to war on false premises. In fact Jimmy Carter and Al Gore had already launched attacks on Bush’s foreign policy that were unprecedented in their harshness in September 2002, even as Bush was attempting to bring Saddam to heel and going to the UN General Assembly for help. So how can Bush be blamed for being the divider and using the war as a wedge issue, when the Democrats who betrayed their own votes to authorize force were clearly the aggressors?

You have invoked Truman, as an exemplar of Cold War liberalism to distinguish him from the conservatism of George Bush. I have already dealt with this in relation to the nuclear threat. But even on the conventional front it is hard to see any difference between the positions of Truman and Bush. Did North Korea’s attack on South Korea pose an “imminent threat” to the United States? Hardly. Did Truman get UN support? Yes. But how was he able to do that? Because Russia had previously walked out of the UN Security Council and was unable to exercise its veto. If Russia had not denied itself the veto, Truman would have been in the same position as Bush was in regard to Iraq following the Security Council war ultimatum. In other words, he would have been faced with the decision to go to war without UN approval or let the North Korean Communist aggressors conquer the South. Is there any doubt in your mind as to what decision Truman would have made?

If Truman had come to the aid of the South Koreans without UN support how many Democrats do you think would have opposed him? We can only speculate on the answer but the fact is that Vito Marcantonio, a Communist fellow-traveler, was the lone vote in Congress against the Korean war. Whereas more than 100 Democrats voted against the use of force to topple Saddam Hussein, not only in 2002, but in 1990 following his invasion of Kuwait. Only six Democrat senators voted to oppose Saddam’s aggression in 1990. One of those was Al Gore who has now joined the anti-war camp. What a different party the Democrats became after 1972. Surely you cannot lay all this at the feet of George Bush.

So, yes, the question before us, as you put it, is flagging Democratic support for the anti-jihadist struggle. You and I both think that there are too few Democrats committed to this cause. But you attribute this to the divisive incompetence of Bush. I don’t, and my critique of your book is that you fail to examine how the Democratic Party went from a Party in which only one of its members voted against the Korean War, to the party of 1980s which in its majority opposed the anti-Communist struggle in Central America, and the party of 1990 which in its majority opposed the anti-Saddam war, and the party of 2006 which is virtually united in its opposition to the war against al-Qaeda and its allies in Iraq.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Normal Left Treatment

On the way home tonight I had NPR on and they got into talking about the death of Ken Lay. The announcer casually mentioned that "Former Enron employees and stockholders are holding parties to celebrate". Now I know that we have all been told to hate Ken Lay more than any terrorist or child molester, even though most actual business and financial analysts would point out that nothing he did was illegal at the time he did it. It was some combination of hyper-aggressive, stupid, imprudent, greedy and wishful thinking, but then Social Security and Medicare are pretty much that, just bought into by a larger group of people. Enron crashed, the public wanted a pound of flesh, so Ken made a good target and took the hit.

Are they really holding parties to celebrate? Maybe, I'd be pretty ashamed to hold a party to celebrate the death of anyone short of at least Bin laden, and as a Christian, I'd certainly want to be making it a private party even then. The point is that the NPR announcer obviously enjoyed the idea and would be happy to attend. These are the people that think that Ann Coulter is "coarse and nasty". Yes, Ann can be caustic, but people of the right pretty much understand she is being caustic when she is. I honestly don't think the lefties even see their coarseness since they are all so certain of their lefty moral superiority.

One if by land


Powerline had that great fake NYT at LINK. It is solidly done, and humor gets the point across very well. They hate Bush so much that they can't help but see him as a greater enemy than any terrorist.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Godless

I finished Ann Coulter's "Godless, The Church of Liberalism a few days ago, and enjoyed the book very much. It was my first Father's Day present purchased with my son's own money and carried out with his own Amazon account, so that may have biased me a bit!

My first reaction is how the MSM and even many folks on the right treat Ann as a pariah and either don't mention her at all, or point out how "divisive" she is. Meanwhile, on the left, Al Franken has moved back to MN and is considering a run for Senate, and at least local lefties are writing him up as a legitimate candied. Michael Moore sits next to former president Jimmy Carter at the 2004 Dem convention. At best, both these guys are equivalent bomb-throwers to Ann and I'd argue far worse.

I have a bit more authority to say that than something like 99% of people, since I've actually read them both, as well as Ann. I don't claim to unbiased, but I'm willing to see what the other side puts out. To the extent Ann is less than perfect on her facts, the MSM and the left is very happy to air anything that is even a potential issue, even though it may not actually affect the truth of her conclusions. (To whit, a lot of time spent by Franken on the fact that the NYT reported Dale Earnhardt's death, but Ann said they didn't ... BUT, the point is that the NYT and the folks on the left miss the importance of NASCAR and things like values ... which is pretty much true, even though she got a fact wrong).

However on the left, the book points out again and again how "fake but true" is pretty much as true as anything ever gets from the left. The fake Bush National Guard documents used as support by CBS are the clearest recent example, but Willy Horton, Anita Hill, the Kerry Military record and defense thereof and even a significant portion of the "evidence" in support of evolution are also in that camp. The left is the bastion of "if it is repeated enough times, it will become true". Thus there are certain phrases like "the failed economic policies of the '80s" or "the discredited charges of the Swift Boat Veterans" that are uttered enough times so the left and a huge chunk of bleating MSM sheep in the masses believe them simply because they are certain that it MUST be true.

I was most surprised to see her takedown of evolution evidence that has been finally reported in the NYT as being a hoax, only because they are concerned that the number of hoaxes out there in evolution textbooks make evolution look pretty bad as it is challenged by Intelligent Design. It is pretty clear that in order to claim that there ISN'T any intelligence behind the universe is at least as big a "faith statement" as to claim that there is. Ann makes the point that evolution is the creation story of the state religion of liberalism, so no discussion can be allowed in the schools whose primary purpose is to convince young minds of the unnatural path of liberalism.

I loved her start to chapter 8; "Even if evolution were true, it wouldn't disprove God. God has performed more spectacular feats than evolution. It's not even a daunting challenge to a belief in God. If you want something that complicates a belief in God, trying coming to terms with Michael Moore being one of God's special creatures."

Having been hammered with the fundamentalist view as a child, it took a long time to move my own puny picture of "how big is God" beyond the little fundamentalist view from either the left or the right, that "if evolution is true, there is no God". We tend to spend a lot of time listening to fundamentalists from the left wing that control the MSM and the educational institutions of America bluster from the "evolution is true, there is no God"! Side of that equation. We spend less time, but still a significant amount listening to some Kansas fundamentalists of the right scream "God is real, therefore evolution is false"!

Her first statement is that "Survival of the the fittest" is a better statement for some pseudo-science like astrology than for something that claims to be actual science. It is a tautology. How would one disprove it? Find a species that wasn't fit that was still alive? Have the humans all commit suicide? But wait, I guess that would make us unfit. It is like saying "Tallness of the tallest", it doesn't add a single thing to the discussion, yet it is repeated as holy writ.

She points out that a random process would throw off TONS of "unfit or less fit" intermediate forms in it's unordered, undirected, non-striving way. There are no such forms in the fossil record. There are a lot of attempted excuses as to why not, and some hoaxes attempting to create some since the lack of such fossils is an extreme embarrassment. It would be as if Einstein did E=MC**2, pointed out what it should mean when we measured things to prove it, but then the things DIDN'T come to pass. For Einstein, the "theory" DID bear out (and still does) as more data could be gathered. For Darwin, it has not ... BUT, the godless liberals are left with no other creation story, so they keep using only one they have, and defending it harder.

She goes in detail through Piltdown Man, peppered moths and Nazi Earnst Haeckel with his drawing of the stages of embryo development mirroring the stages of evolution. His drawings are a hoax, but what is always funny to me is how often the left chooses to lift ideas that they like from Nazi's, then cover up that they are Nazi ideas, while in parallel trying to create links from people on the right to Nazis even where they don't exist, or are weak at best. They know what evil is, they want to use it when they can without taint, yet link the innocent with it whenever they can.

She closes off the book with a discussion of the obvious point that if there is no God, then there is no morality at all beyond the current whim of whomever can get power, and "survival of the fittest". Peter Singer, Princeton "ethics" professor that believes in infanticide and killing the "unfit elderly" for humans, "equal rights" for apes, not allowing humans to eat meat, but allowing beastiality; is used as an example of what "anything goes" really means. The MSM ignores that this man has written books on all these topics and still sits in a position at a major US university in spite of a few courageous folks like Steve Forbes stopping any of their funds from supporting the school as long as he holds his position. In the church of liberalism though, the only God is "anything goes", and Singer is an example of where we are headed if we don't heed the warnings that Ann Provides in this excellent (and fun) book.