Saturday, February 16, 2008
My generation, what we are sacrificing, we have seen the face of our enemy; we have been up close and personal…
"A man's war is like his mother; you don't talk about a man's war" says SSG David Bellavia at CPAC as the veteran explains the reasons why you would visit a place like Gettysburg…
Is this what they mean by that Barack Obama's "vapid but resonant symbolism" that the equally vapid subculture of the left keep beating off about?
...and I mean that sarcastically. Der Speigel’s one and only Marc Pitzge along with back-up place kicker Gabor Steingart deserves some sort of award for the vapidness of these brilliant titles:
“A TITANIC MOOD IN THE CLINTON CAMP” and his running column on the democratic nomination race called with great originality: “WEST WING”. Ooh! Alert the media!
In other words, they, or whoever it is that edits their trash back in the heimat knows about as much about the US as someone living in Germany who loafs around watching too much TV. But there’s more! Not satisfied by merely beating off to the latest hate-filled Ted Rall comic? Just get a load (smirk!) of the brilliant insight in this sub-heading:
"Where's the Beef?"
I don’t know. Have you cleaned your ears lately? And the buffoons actually want us to believe that a few of the Americans in Berlin think they’re “in exile”. Look: the Burmese living in Berlin are in exile. The Kurds in Berlin USED to be in exile. Der Speigel’s hyperbole should be deported to someplace where they really aren’t capable of tolerance and learn better, like, say, in one part or another of the holy continent of Europe and all of it’s peevish preoccupations and obsessions. Such as they are.
Via Rightgrrrl, we find Kate McMillan writing in Canada’s National Post wondering who we as a species learned to be such a bunch of pansies.
By "famine", I do not mean those 24-hour fruit-juice-sipping adventures in group narcissism devoted to curing the problems of that continent-wide parade of dysfunction known as "Africa." No, what I have in mind is a proper food shortage of the depth and duration that drives the creative homemaker to taste test the wallpaper glue, while contemplating which of the $3,000 Labradoodles goes first into the stew pot.In the mean time, they might occasionally come up to find rolling papers and Doritos, but don’t bet on it, unless they major in do-gooderism something a beauty pageant contestant would say they want to do when they “grow up”.
"Dig deep, darling. The pup's at the bottom."
A taste of deprivation could restore the word "crisis" to its original definition, resurrect "endurance" and "stoicism" from the vocabulary dustbin, along with the long-lost distinction between "threat" and "nuisance."
It would push back the powerful "if it saves one child" lobby, along with their toboggan helmet police, school lunch analysts, anti-bullying program directors, and playground equipment removal teams. They'd be forced to shelve plans to open the family car to random search by health department inspectors with tobacco-detecting dogs. They'd return to tending their own needs and wants, instead of regulating away those of everyone else.
A half million 20-somethings would emerge from their parents' basements, if only to search for food.
The social awards is for abundant fertility and record motherhood, worthy of a farm based fatherland. The citizens seem increasingly like the angriest sort of the southern republics. Maybe the fevered anger is about counter-revolutionaries sabotaging tractor production, and the great national rutabaga harvest.
No, it’s not the CCCP we’re talking about...
Friday, February 15, 2008
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Of course, the problem now is that French TV will be wall-to-wall Henri Salvador scopitones for at least a week
Having never been any good at Engineering lately, the twitter-ati of the UK tries social engineering. It doesn’t say much for the state of democracy when people want to forcably impose racial quotas on “elected” officials in an effort to take away political choice from 99% of the population (humans) to pander to an elite amounting to 1% of the population who have such a low view of the public, that they don’t think anyone else can see past their own naïve view of people as easily compartmented tribes and factions.
More to the point is the sporting joy that elite of Islington exiles take in evoking a reaction of a few people in order to characterize something negative about the 92.4% of the population that’s Caucasian, and make the 2.4% of the population which is black, and the 5.2% that’s Asian feel to them like their helpless political wards who would otherwise be incapable of having among them a range of political views.
For that matter, the tiny, but morally repugnant elite that imagines that pluralism is so utterly disposable to a degree that you can limit who can run to begin with. The fact that they already have party lists shoved down their throats is sad enough.
There has to be some sort of distraction that the good people of Britain, the real Benetton ad crowd can offer these clueless “social overlords” that will make them believe that they’re indispensible to humanity, but keep them in the corner where that can’t do that much harm. I sort of though that this is what Radio 4 and “eco-tourism” were for, but apparently it’s a case of “today Parliament, tomorrow your last shred of liberty”.
Operation Black Vote, which conducted the research, recommends all-minority shortlists are used for four consecutive elections, in a bid to help BME candidates "get past go".Except when it is. If the same bullying meets the standard used to MEPs that don’t fit the dominant paradigm, or to call any number of things “constructing a climate of urgency”, then why not this?
Report author Simon Wolley said: "The change in the law is not a sledgehammer to crack a nut; it's not forcing parties to use all-black shortlists.
Note the creative use of the word “we”. I don’t think they mean the public at large.
"But unless we take positive action measures we are not going to have a representative democracy for more than 75 years. It's not that we don't have [Barack] Obamas, but we don't have the mechanisms for them to see the light of day."We have a Barack Obama precisely because we DO have a democracy, and DON’T compromise it as badly as they propose by force and coercion.
Making stupidity sound banal, one of it’s proponents managed this bit of brilliance too:
"The creation of ethnic-minority shortlists will undoubtedly see more ethnic minorities taking up seats in Parliament, which will mean a Parliament that mirrors the society it represents," he argued.Note that “election candidates” has to remain in ellipses.
His Race Relations (Election Candidates) Bill would be a voluntary measure for parties to adopt in some seats but would remove legal obstacles surrounding the discrimination, as Labour had to do when its all-women shortlists were found to be illegal.
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Si vous me demandez si Chamberlain ressemble à Zapatero, je répondrai… que Chamberlain avait plus de relief et même plus de courage que Zapatero !
Sincèrement, la gauche a instrumentalisé cette tragédie. Tous les sondages sont formels : sans ces attentats sur lesquels la gauche a surfé, nous aurions gagné les élections. Ce qui est terrible, c’est qu’au lieu d’en vouloir aux terroristes on en a voulu au gouvernement ! … N’oubliez pas que, le 11 mars 2004, le premier à accuser l’ETA pour dédouaner les islamistes et affaiblir mon gouvernement fut M. Zapatero ! La stratégie de la gauche changea quand elle constata qu’il était, pour elle, plus porteur électoralement de nous accuser d’avoir menti en attribuant les attentats à l’ETA — une hypothèse dont je rappelle que ce n’était, pour nous, qu’une supposition parmi d’autres. Comme je l’ai expliqué à maintes reprises, nous nous sommes contentés de transmettre au public toute les informations dont nous disposions. Nous avons collé au rapport des services de sécurité, qui faisait porter à ETA la responsabilité de l’attentat.
Les Espagnols ont voté ce jour-là dans un contexte de grande tension émotionnelle. … Personne n’a jamais posé la question de la légitimité de ces élections. Mais, chaque jour, il apparaît toujours plus clairement que les terroristes ont atteint l’objectif qu’ils poursuivaient : conditionner le processus électoral. C’est un sujet de réflexion essentiel pour toutes les démocraties — dans la mesure où ce phénomène risque de se reproduire. La décision de retirer les troupes espagnoles d’Irak, qui fut prise en violation des engagements internationaux de l’Espagne et des promesses que M. Zapatero lui-même avait faites durant la campagne électorale, fut considérée par les terroristes comme une victoire importante. Et lorsque les terroristes enregistrent une victoire, ils se renforcent…
Si vous me demandez si Chamberlain ressemble à Zapatero, je répondrai… que Chamberlain avait plus de relief et même plus de courage que Zapatero ! En effet, après avoir pactisé avec les nazis, Chamberlain, lui, avait au moins eu le courage de s’en aller par la grande porte. Zapatero n’ose même pas en faire autant ! Il doit certainement avoir honte de sa politique d’apaisement avec l’ETA mais il n’ose pas affronter les reproches de ses adversaires politiques et de son peuple. Chamberlain et Zapatero ont effectué les mêmes erreurs et ont les mêmes défauts ; seul le courage les différencie. Et je suis certain que si Zapatero venait à être réélu en 2008, il pactiserait à nouveau avec les terroristes d’ETA.
The New York Times Sunday book reviews can be a rather cute thing sometimes. Especially when there’s a “disturbance in the force” that one of the apparachiks of the house organ of the empire of Sneer-opia thinks they need to neutralize the existence of any notion that doesn’t conform to their world view. The usual routine for them to find among the cadres, one with a pencil and a penchance to occasionally comb their hair, to take one for the team.
What I’m referring to, obviously, is Geoffrey Wheatcroft’s attempt to make James J. Sheehan’s “Where have all the Soldiers Gone, The Transformation of Modern Europe” to stop hurting his ears.
It is titled “Europeans are From Venus.” Oh, goodness me! What a wit!
The amusing thing about this train-wreck of his is that it does such an awful job of even understanding its own examples and sources. Citing Robert Kagan’s use of the term “Europeans are from Venus” from “Of Paradise and Power” in his title gives you the sense that there was some grand change in world view over the past century that ties the shrinking capacity of European nation-states to be a global agent for change and arbiter in conflicts, and the reflexive passivity that makes the continent’s Stepford children march against virtually any moving object. They are two entirely different subjects, but to the great minds of the Euro-yack-itopia they are because they both happen to involve soldiers, and, like, guns ‘n stuff, as opposed to the conflicts addressed in any of the theses. In fact at that level of unfamiliar ignorance, you could plausibly tie gravity and sunlight to his arguments.
This outpouring of popular feeling against war no doubt confirmed Kagan in his view that those “Europeans from Venus” are now incapable of the use of military force that still comes naturally to Americans, and that it was “time to stop pretending that Europeans and Americans share a common view of the world, or even that they occupy the same world.”As if conflicts over which Americans have debated, taken issue on, supported or opposed, is somehow so easy to compartment in the “Venusian” mind really is easy for us. The first error is the bigoted one that you can attribute to his entire social orbit which permits him to believe that 302 million people are sufficiently similar to one another, and conform to his cartoonish view to say that without the editors laughing him to the impotent beehive of a continent whose gross neglect of human suffering he’s trying to salve.
However that may be, it’s a surely astonishing fact that no European war has been fought for more than 60 years, at least outside the ruins of Yugoslavia. Western Europe has become politically and socially demilitarized to a degree once unimaginable; after so many centuries of bloody conflict, Europeans don’t want to study war no more. In his scintillating tour d’horizon — and de force — Sheehan suggests that such obsolescence of war is specifically “the product of Europe’s distinctive history in the 20th century,” and he argues that it has created a new kind of European state along with “a dramatically new international system within Europe.”Which is only possible if you’ve been so violent, so disruptive to humanity that your wars and ideas have killed hundreds of millions of people, that there is a need to be vanquished. This notion that they made this peace, fully born from the beneficence of their hearts is a dangerous delusion.
Which you can correct within five minutes radio listening. Of late, from that great blissful continent of EUtopia, whose dwindling number of children find themselves dancing about the maypole (both of them), we find one of many emerging forces bereft of any compelling moral framework. Not just the inability of the EU itself to embrace pluralism, but more to the point a frustrate Russia in fear of being in it’s last throws as a place with any form of social harmony and future. Never mind the age at which the men are die-ing by their own behavior, as telling as it is, just listen to the reanimated older nature of the Voice of Russia, which kicks off it’s broadcast with news of state visits as if the clock has turned back to 1977, and that whatever civil society there is outside of government is some of the art and sports that isn’t managed by a ministry.
Wheatcroft, in the cherry picking of examples about marching protestors is missing the pattern in European nature of marching armies as they remain, and the reasons they always have. To buy this line of shit so frequently parroted from the right side of the pond, you have to dissociate WHY some militaries are used. Even his citations in support of the “different, better people” argument make this quite obvious:
In late 1991, at the insistence of the German government (itself egged on, one might add, by Serb-bashing right-wing columnists in papers like The Frankfurter Allgemeine), the European Union recognized the sovereignty of Slovenia and Croatia, and then Bosnia, crucially and disastrously before the nationality questions in those territories had been resolved. This encouraged a competitive round of territorial acquisition and ethnic expulsion and “intensified the predatory war being fought by Serbs and Croatians against Bosnia.” Actually, it turned out (four times over) to require both Americans in the air, on the ground, and in the larger part of the reconstruction effort in EUtopia’s back yard.
It was of course ludicrous as well as hubristic for Jacques Poos, foreign minister of Luxembourg, to say at this juncture that “the hour of Europe has dawned,” but trans-Atlantic denunciations of European weakness were also misplaced. When the tub-thumpers of Capitol Hill and the op-ed pages were asked 15 years ago what kind of military intervention in the Balkans they had in mind, it turned out to mean American air cover while the Western Europeans provided the P.B.I., as the British Army used to say, the poor bloody infantry, a division of labor that had little appeal in Europe.
One can talk about European soft power against American hard power, but the point is made better by Sheehan in the peroration to this excellent book. The birth of the Bolshevik regime — and then of Fascist and National Socialist regimes — was a direct consequence of the “intense violence” then poisoning Europe. The astonishingly peaceful collapse of Communism rather more than 70 years later reflected in turn “the decline of violence that, by the 1980s, had transformed international and domestic politics throughout Europe”: a change for the better if ever there was one. To put it another way, soccer is not only England’s and Europe’s gift to all mankind. It really is a better game.Peace, you see, is being so vigilant on your passivity, that brutal hangovers of the state-fetishizing socialism can engage in genocide without any fear of intervention, mere hundreds of kilometers from the rotting boulevards where millions marched against the deposing of Saddam Hussein.
That surely must be something to be proud of. The only way to be so proud is to pasteurize the mind of the questions “why” and “when” to the reasons war is often unavoidable when the ugly memories or war are, in fact, inadequate to dissuade internecine violence and genocide from this continent that supposedly “remembers” war and brutality.
As for “whose game it is” is really the key to understanding a critic like Wheatcroft. It’s made obvious by spuriously throwing in an old quote from Evelyn Waugh:
It isn’t necessary to agree with Evelyn Waugh writing to his friend Graham Greene — “Of course the Americans are cowards. They are almost all the descendants of wretches who deserted their legitimate monarchs for fear of military service” — to see clearly that the United States isn’t a warlike country at all. In many ways it has always been more deeply peaceable in its instincts than ever Europe was. Because it isn’t about peace, the protection of innocents, or anything else – it’s about Europeans no longer “owning the game”. My sense is that if Europeans had a game, frankly ANYTHING that would work to even take a chip out of the abuse vulnerable people worldwide have to suffer, Americans would be more that happy to let them have their little never ending end-zone dance. But they have to actually do something to demonstrate that they can actually do something to support their self-flattery with fact.
And is the civilianization of Europe such a bad thing? Although there has been much grumbling about the Bundeswehr’s inadequate contribution in Afghanistan, some of us cannot see it as an occasion for pure regret if the Germans have changed character so drastically.
And they might want to abandon their schitophrenic relationship with themselves as both a special class of humans and a mass of pitiable, emotionally vulnerable peace lovers in need to having their precious little feelings protected. Oh, and their class hatred at some point in the next century too, if they can, but I wouldn’t hold my breath – because somewhere in their S&M game of not being able to figure out if everyone in an over-or-under class, and the insistence of proletarian-seeming sameness of outcome, they’ll continue to forget as they’ve had so often before in their history – the people that get killed when they think they “know their game”. This time it might be a deterministic attempt to tax the carbon out of the atmosphere, or anti-globalize our way to impoverishing billions in Asia and Africa, but any way you shake it, the ugliness that comes out of the hubris that they can’t seem to develop in their breathtaking enlightenment will emerge to do more harm again.
Like one fellow I had to listen to last night who told me, imagining that everyone MUST agree with him, that there was something evil and calculating about George Bush spreading democracy, all you have to do is ask them when did promoting democracy and pluralism suddenly become so evil? Simple: when the people your childish hatred compels you to oppose do something you can’t bring yourself to admit is positive, and when your own world view completely failed to succeed in its’ own attempt to promote human freedom.
Much in the way that foolish old coot was willing to dispose of human dignity to make his point about his own notion of the defense of human dignity, so will the European social brain trust. Of course the humans themselves need not apply.
Sunday, February 10, 2008
Atlas Shrugs was there (i.e., at Washington's Omni Shoreham Hotel), as were Midnight Blue (Midnight Blues?) and Fausta, among many others — the Cap'n, the Gal, the Miss, the Shovel, the Wing, the Grizzly, (whom else did I forget?) etc — on Bloggers' Corner.
1) why is it not better known that Dubya is not only funny and eloquent (and the most energetic of us all at 7:15 in the morning), he was (is) one of the best speakers around?
2) the best (and most intelligent) speaker (Speaker?), however, was Newt Gingrich (Tony Snow rated a close second); how can Newt Gingrich's friends, colleagues, and important others harass and shame the man into running for president (if not, this year, another election year)?
Update: Veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan spoke on a panel while a bedazzling New Yorker shanghaied me into working as a cameraman as she interviewed a veteran running for Congress…