Monday, October 08, 2007

Media Dishonesty Matters

And the media wonders why nobody trusts them.

Che Guevara, from Communist Firebrand to Capitalist Brand

Che Guevara was executed 40 years ago today. On balance, that's a good thing.

The Braid

Maybe Hillary should try this. Somehow though, I think the effect would be lost in translation.

Jimmy Carter Announces "There Is No Genocide in Darfur"

Boy that's a relief. I could have sworn that all those piles of corpses amounted to genocide. I guess I was wrong.
I like to think that Jimmy Carter was once a good and decent man (though mistaken and naive). It's becoming harder every day to believe that still applies.
I remember how disappointed I was in 1990 when he complained bitterly about the Nicaraguan election. Daniel Ortega, the communist president of the country had decided to hold a genuinely free election and the people promptly kicked him out of office. At this point Carter had proceeded to throw a fit. What was the point of Carter monitoring an election if the people were going to vote the wrong way? How could he convince other communist thugs to hold free elections if they were just going to loose power?
He was right. It was the first and last free election in a communist country. Some might quibble with this assertion since a number of eastern European governments were technically communist until new governments could be voted in after the fall of the Berlin wall. True enough I suppose but those governments had no realistic chance of retaining power. In contrast, it was widely assumed that the communists would retain power in Nicaragua. The polls supported this belief, which just goes to show you that you shouldn't trust opinion polls in countries where it's illegal to have certain opinions.In the end it seemed that all Carter wanted do was to legitimize some of the worst regimes in the world by giving them a veneer of democracy. To his enduring shame, he's still at it.
To be fair to Ortega, he was fairly benign by communist dictator standards. Sort of a left-wing Augusto Pinochet. He was still a brutal thug, but he had some redeeming qualities as well (he was a snappy dresser for instance). Amazingly he's made a political comeback as a mainstream social democrat (think John Kerry) and is once again the President of Nicaragua.

Essential Gear.

Top 1% Pay More Income Tax Than Bottom 90%

Worth remembering the next time democrats complain about the unfairness of "tax cuts for the rich".

Glen Reynolds says:
I think that degree of progressivity is actually bad. I think that everyone should pay at least some tax, and it should vary each year with how much the government spends, and should be enough to give people an incentive to care.

Evil Republicans oppose government run healthcare for kids.

A couple of key qoutes:

...legislation-by-anecdote is a tricky thing, and should only be done when the anecdotes actually hold some water.

The family is not as destitute as the MSM has made them out to be. FreeRepublic member icwhatudo asks the tough questions the mainstream media won’t ask. Like why a “working family” in need of government-subsidized health care can afford to send two children to a $20,000-a-year-private school.

Apparently this family made life choices which did not include insurance for their kids.That is not "need." That is "choice." In America, we try to take responsibility for our choices like big boys and girls.

As Don Surber points out: “Interesting that public schools aren’t good enough for their kids but public health insurance is.”

No more heroes?

No, not all of us were destined to be Olympians. But each of us has the innate capacity to maximize our natural gifts and our heroes give as an example of the form. Something to look up to, a vision to chase.

Except when they cheat. Some of us lose their faith in human greatness, others give in to the siren song and lose their innocence.

But all of us lose.

Chill Out

Bjorn Lomborg is the smartest guy out there talking about climate science these days.

From the article:
I point this out not to challenge the reality of global warming or the fact that it's caused in large part by humans, but because the discussion about climate change has turned into a nasty dustup, with one side arguing that we're headed for catastrophe and the other maintaining that it's all a hoax. I say that neither is right. It's wrong to deny the obvious: The Earth is warming, and we're causing it. But that's not the whole story, and predictions of impending disaster just don't stack up.

Current Republican poll numbers.

Democrats here.

The Primary Season Yadda-Yadda - The Candidates Paraphrased

Mitt to Rudy: You're a big spender.
Rudy to Mitt: You're a bigger spender.
Mitt to Rudy: No, you!
Rudy to Mitt: No, you!
Fred: Er... um... ahh.... You both spend too much!
Ron: The government should not exist!

Barack to Hillary: I was against the Iraq War before you were.
Hillary to Barack: You're unqualified.
Barack to Hillary: You're too qualified!
Hillary to Barack: You don't know what you're talking about!
John: I was against the Iraq War while a fetus!
Bill: I was against the Iraq War in a previous life!

This sounds about right.

CIA May Threaten Detainees with Senate Hearings

Too cruel for words.

Anzacs at Passchendale, 90 years later.

Every casualty in war is a tragedy. It's important however to keep things in perspective. Whatever losses we endure today in places like Iraq and Afghanistan, they pale in comparison to the sacrifices made by earlier generations on the altar of freedom.

Europe Whimpers

[T]he biggest fly in the EUtopian ointment is the millions of European Muslims who are underemployed, disaffected with European culture, overrepresented in prisons and on the welfare rolls, and filled with arrogant confidence that their faith is superior to European social and political ideals.

Have American academics lost their collective minds?

According to Victor Davis Hanson, the answer is yes.

Al Qaeda and Haditha bombshell: What the MSM didn’t tell you

Helms reports that the attack was carried out by “multiple cells of local Wahabi extremists and well-paid local gunmen from Al Asa’ib al-Iraq [the Clans of the People of Iraq] that were led by Al Qaeda foreign fighters, the summary claims. Their case was bolstered by Marine signal intercepts revealing that the al Qaeda fighters planned to videotape the attacks and exploit the resulting carnage for propaganda purposes. Eleven insurgents involved in the attack are identified by name and affiliation in the details of the summary. All of them were killed or captured in the days immediately following the Haditha incident.”

More here:

How Much Did Shakespeare Embiggen the English Vocabulary?

Shakespeare is sometimes said to have coined more new English words than anyone else, with the possible exception of James Joyce. This is not true. The illusion of his unique inventiveness in this regard was created by the tendency of the Oxford English Dictionary to cite examples from him as the first usage of a word. That was because of his ready availability when the dictionary was created at the end of the Victorian era. Now that there are large digitized databases of sixteenth-century books, it is easy to find prior occurrences for many supposed Shakespearean coinage.