Friday, January 30, 2009

Over at the Glen School 1967 blog is this post about my mom and dad. Be sure to check out the rest of the blog for lots more pictures and memories of the Ridgewood, NJ we grew up in.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Dispatch From the Religion of Peace

We haven’t posted anything from the RoP in quite a while, because it’s been mostly the usual stuff in the news. Rockets into Israel, honor killings, the occasional suicide bomber. But you’ve got to hand it to them, when it comes to finding new things to kill people over, nobody beats our old pals, The Taliban.
PESHAWAR, Pakistan – Bus drivers in northwest Pakistan have begun removing audio and video equipment from their vehicles after Taliban militants threatened suicide attacks against those who played music or movies for their passengers, an industry official said Tuesday.

Transport workers in Mardan town received letters this week from militants saying that buses offering such entertainment were guilty of spreading "vulgarity and obscenity," Walid Mir, general secretary of the town's transport union, told The Associated Press.

The militants said they would check the buses and that suicide attacks would be carried out against vehicles that still had audio and video equipment — prompting union members to act quickly, Mir said.

The Taliban letter complained that traveling in buses that provide audiovisual entertainment was a "source of mental agony for pious people," according to a text obtained by AP.

"It is obligatory on us to stop such violations. We request you to remove the vulgar systems ... otherwise suicide bombers are ready," the letter said.
In today’s society, very few of our protected rights are absolute. It’s easy to find conditions in which a right must be restricted for the good of civilized people. We may have freedom of speech, but (famously) not to yell “fire” in a crowded movie theater. Many on the left think there is no right to keep and bear arms at all, despite what the Constitution says. The government and the courts are constantly pushing and pulling, trying to figure out where individual rights begin and end. With one notable exception. Abortion.

Somehow, abortion has become the one "right" the left demands be entirely unlimited, unregulated, and unmolested by government. Early term, late term, partial-birth, they are all protected all the time and don’t you dare suggest otherwise. It’s non-negotiable.
As it was with Bill Clinton, it seems that abortion will be the only ground over which our new leader will not negotiate. He promised as much at a Planned Parenthood function last year, and there’s no reason not to take him at his word. Abortion is, in fact, the only issue Obama has a record on. And while the press hasn’t trumpeted it, attention was paid after his careless "above my pay grade" dismissal of Rick Warren’s question about when "a baby gets human rights" - enough so that no responsible voter could claim ignorance of Obama’s history of abortion extremism.

Why is there such need to extinguish all significance from the abortion act? A need so compelling that Obama would acquiesce in outright infanticide rather than support legislation - proposed in 2003 in the Illinois State Senate, of which he was then a member - to protect the lives of babies who survived bungled abortions? Obama, who gathered a winning coalition under the banner of "change we can believe in," said "No" to this proposition a year after the U.S. Senate unanimously passed virtually identical legislation. Rescinding the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act (along with all other state and federal abortion regulations) is the kind of change Obama believes in.
So not only does Obama believe that all abortions need to be performed, he wants to legislatively guarantee that they all succeed, even those that initially fail. What other medical procedure has a guaranteed "successful" outcome? And this brought a tear to my eye, written in 1976 by an abortion supporter:
In one chapter, after recording the discomfort she had felt while watching an abortion, Denes describes visiting the room where the remains of aborted fetuses are stored. At first, she recalls the unexpected pleasure of putting on surgical gloves and discovering that her "hands feel completely protected without any noticeable loss of agility." But pleasure quickly fades as she proceeds to inspect a "garbage-can-filled graveyard," using forceps to lift dead little human beings out of "paper buckets—the type in which one buys fried chicken from take-out stores."

Here she is at journey’s end: "Finally, I lift a very large fetus whose position is such that, rather than its stiff face, I first see its swollen testicles and abnormally large stiff penis. I look at the label. Mother’s name: Catherine Atkins; doctor’s name: Saul Marcus; sex of item: male; time of gestation: twenty-four weeks. I remember Catherine. She is seventeen, a very pretty blond girl. Not very bright. This is Master Atkins - to be burned tomorrow - who died like a hero to save his mother’s life. Might he have become someday the only one to truly love her? The only one to mourn her death? 'Nurse, nurse,' I shout, taking off my fancy gloves. 'Cover them up.' "
It’s telling that even an abortion rights supporter can’t look at the results of her advocacy. "Cover them up."

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

What Media Bias III?

Here's an interesting dichotomy:

“The questions have come from Bush supporters and opponents: Do we need to spend this money on what seems so extravagant?” - The Associated Press on George Bush's $40 billion 2004 inauguration during a growing economy.
President Bush’s second inauguration will cost tens of millions of dollars — $40 million alone in private donations for the balls, parade and other invitation-only parties. With that kind of money, what could you buy?

“For inaugural balls, go for glitz, forget economy” - The Associated Press on Barack Obama's $45 million inauguration during a shrinking economy.
And if anyone does raise an eyebrow at those sequins, remind them that optimism is good for times like these. "Just say you're doing it to help the economy," chuckled good manners guru Letitia Baldridge.
Now, I don't care about partisan hacks. Heck, I am a partisan hack. But I don't claim to be an international non partisan news agency, like the Associated Press:
AP's mission is to be the essential global news network, providing distinctive news services of the highest quality, reliability and objectivity with reports that are accurate, balanced and informed.
Yeah, right! the AP is balanced and objective. And Barack Obama is Abraham Lincoln.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Stephen Moore points out the myriad ways in which the world described in Atlas Shrugged has become reality:
Many of us who know Rand's work have noticed that with each passing week, and with each successive bailout plan and economic-stimulus scheme out of Washington, our current politicians are committing the very acts of economic lunacy that "Atlas Shrugged" parodied in 1957, when this 1,000-page novel was first published and became an instant hit. […]

The current economic strategy is right out of "Atlas Shrugged": The more incompetent you are in business, the more handouts the politicians will bestow on you. That's the justification for the $2 trillion of subsidies doled out already to keep afloat distressed insurance companies, banks, Wall Street investment houses, and auto companies -- while standing next in line for their share of the booty are real-estate developers, the steel industry, chemical companies, airlines, ethanol producers, construction firms and even catfish farmers. With each successive bailout to "calm the markets," another trillion of national wealth is subsequently lost. Yet, as "Atlas" grimly foretold, we now treat the incompetent who wreck their companies as victims, while those resourceful business owners who manage to make a profit are portrayed as recipients of illegitimate "windfalls."
I read the book three years ago while sitting next to my wife’s hospital bed, and it is startling how accurately it depicts the current economic and political condition.
Mark Steyn points out that being “pro Palestinian” is largely a front for good old-fashioned Jew-hating:
In Toronto, anti-Israel demonstrators yell "You are the brothers of pigs!", and a protester complains to his interviewer that "Hitler didn’t do a good job."

In Fort Lauderdale, Palestinian supporters sneer at Jews, "You need a big oven, that’s what you need!"

In Amsterdam, the crowd shouts, "Hamas, Hamas! Jews to the gas!"
And on and on it goes. In Paris, Toulouse, Belgium, Antwerp, London. Jews threatened, targeted, attacked, synagogues bombed, children evicted from schools. It’s an awful display. And all along
(W)e are assured that criticism of the Jewish state is not the same as anti-Semitism. We are further assured that anti-Zionism is not the same as anti-Semitism
Nobody ever seems to ask who attacking Jews in Florida, Canada, Belgium, France, and Great Britain constitutes "criticism of the Jewish state," when the Jews under attack aren’t even Israelis. Why is "Jewism" the only "ism" the left wing can’t seem to get worked up over?

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Hold on there, Bobalouie!

Not so fast for the Obamaphiles:
Although Mr. Obama has not publicly identified which priorities will have to wait, advisers and allies have signaled that they may put off renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement, overhauling immigration laws, restricting carbon emissions, raising taxes on the wealthy and allowing gay men and lesbians to serve openly in the military.
It's going to be interesting to see how Obama's special interest supporters react to his running into reality. It's also a relief to see the President-elect acknowledging reality. I hope we can work with this guy.


In the comments, reader Rob invokes the specter of peak oil:
Gee, if that's true then I guess, as I see it, since we're almost out of oil, we'll have to burn vast amounts of coal in order to heat our homes and businesses.
I did a little research, and MSNBC isn't so sure:
“Oil is too critical to the global economy to allow fear to replace careful analysis about the very real challenges with delivering liquid fuels to meet the needs of growing economies,” said Peter Jackson, director of oil industry activity for Cambridge, a Massachusetts-based consultant to the oil, natural gas and electric power industries.

The said the peak in global daily oil production will not come before 2030 and will be followed not by a steep decline, but rather by an “undulating plateau” of ups and downs in output before a gradual dropoff, according to the report.

Jackson said the main flaw in “peak oil” theory is that it fails to account for exploration, technology, rising estimates of the size of existing fields and geopolitical shifts. [...]

The plateau could last for decades, Jackson said.

“The 'peak oil’ theory causes confusion and can lead to inappropriate actions and turn attention away from real issues,” Jackson said.
I'll keep my Grand Cherokee for now, thanks.

I blame Global Warming

Because, you know, it's settled science and all:
The earth is now on the brink of entering another Ice Age, according to a large and compelling body of evidence from within the field of climate science. Many sources of data which provide our knowledge base of long-term climate change indicate that the warm, twelve thousand year-long Holocene period will rather soon be coming to an end, and then the earth will return to Ice Age conditions for the next 100,000 years.
In other news, Al Gore was heard to retort "fraid not!"

Monday, January 05, 2009

The global warming nannies have upped the ante. In the name of fighting global warming, California wants a special surcharge on flat screen televisions.
That 52-inch, flat-screen television on the family room wall may have a terrific picture, but there's a big drawback: It's an energy hog.

State regulators are getting ready to curb the growing power gluttony of TV sets by drafting the nation's first rules requiring retailers to sell only the most energy-efficient models, starting in 2011.
Never mind what the public wants! Tell them what they can buy! You'll take our TV set and like it.

Meanwhile, the EPA takes the federal government into new territory. A cow tax. Based upon the Clean Air Act, they propose this:
“The tax for dairy cows could be $175 per cow, and $87.50 per head of beef cattle. The tax on hogs would upwards of $20 per hog,” the release said. “Any operation with more than 25 dairy cows, 50 beef cattle or 200 hogs would have to obtain permits.”
All this in the name of man made global warming. Which is a pile of horse manure.

  • CNN Meteorologist: Manmade Global Warming Theory 'Arrogant'
  • The Man-Made Global Warming Hoax
  • NO 'Consensus' on "Man-Made" Global Warming
  • 2008 The Year Man-made Global Warming Was Disproved
  • You Tube: The Myth of Man made Global Warming
  • Former Gore Advisor Says Man-Made Global Warming Fears “Mistaken”