Squaring the Culture

"...and I will make justice the plumb line, and righteousness the level;
then hail will sweep away the refuge of lies,
and the waters will overflow the secret place."
Isaiah 28:17

08/07/2012 (12:03 pm)

Monkey Bars

A minor flap arose after gymnast Gabby Douglas won her gold medal in the Women’s All-Around Gymnastics competition last Thursday. Bob Costas, announcer for NBC, observed that Ms. Douglas was the first African-American to win that particular event. And then immediately afterward, NBC ran a commercial for a new sitcom called “Animal Practice,” which is about a veterinarian. The ad, unfortunately, showed a monkey competing in an Olympic gymnastic event.


NBC apologized for the ad, although frankly, it may have been better if they’d simply not mentioned it, and let it pass. Seriously, the only people I’ve heard connect “monkey” and “black human being” in the last decade or two have been leftist activists, usually pretending to be offended in order to create a racial incident where none was warranted.

It has been more than a hundred years since the first dark-skinned American athlete won a gold medal at an Olympic event. John Baxter Taylor ran the third leg for the American men’s winning 400 meter relay team in the London Olympics in 1908. There are certain events in which it is practically unheard of for dark-skinned participants not to win; when American distance runner Galen Rupp took second in the men’s 10,000 meter race on Saturday, he was the first Caucasian of any nationality to win a medal in that event since 1984 (and Bob Costas said not a word about it.) Seriously, folks, race is not a big deal anymore at the Olympics, and has not been for a long, long, long time.

Ms. Douglas herself even felt it was insignificant. Her own words upon winning the event were excitement and thanks to God. She had to be reminded of the racial connection, according to USA Today:

“Someone mentioned that I was the first black American (to win the all-around gold), and I said, ‘Oh yeah, I forgot about that!’ I feel so honored,” she said with a laugh.

Ms. Douglas represents the real solution to race issues: pay them no mind. We are excited about her achievement, and indifferent to the color of her skin.

But if you are a leftist in America, you’re still fighting the Civil Rights battles of the 1960s. And so, because NBC is a reliable shill for the American left, we got to hear about the unremarkable racial significance of Gabby Douglas’ win in women’s gymnastics — and NBC exposed themselves to embarrassment where none was necessary.

Leftists live in the 1960s. They are stuck in time. To find an explanation, you need to look no further than one of those pathetic PBS specials where some 60s one-hit wonder is still, in his 70s, performing his one hit for aging, overweight hippies who can’t leave the past behind. The civil rights movement of the 60s was the only time in their lives that they felt relevant, so they have to keep re-creating it, over and over… The alternative is to face one’s mortality, and that takes courage and maturity.

And that, folks, is why they invent Republican “code words” to explain why the raging, 60s-style racists in the Republican party don’t ever, ever say even a single word that sounds racist. It does not seem possible to them that Republicans are not 60s-style racists (even though the actual, 60s-style racists were nearly all Democrats!) To allow that thought would be to face the possibility that they are simply not so very relevant anymore. How terribly strange to be 70…

06/27/2011 (2:26 pm)

Posing As Christians

A member in a private, Christian facebook group recently had to be asked to leave because (s)he was touting an agenda in the group and would not let it rest. A stir arose when somebody suggested that perhaps (s)he was a deliberate plant from an activist group.

It turned out that (s)he was not, but in response to that possibility one of the members of the group posted this fascinating testimony, which I submit for your instruction today, edited to hide the identity of the author:

Posing as Christians

Some members have alluded to the notion that people might infiltrate [Christian] groups with the intention of furthering their agenda. While this may sound a bit conspiratorial, I want to acknowledge that it is true, that it is very common, and that I have been paid to do this– in the past, that is; not now.

Before I was saved, I worked for [organization’s name redacted to protect the identity of the author.] I worked as a writer and as a(n) [official title redacted]. I routinely assumed false identities in order to introduce some radical agenda to a group. Staff writers had accounts at all the major newspapers’ sites and at various blogs and forums. We would pose as members of the “group” to legitimize our authority. I would pretend to be black, pretend to be a woman, pretend to be an immigrant, or pretend to be a Christian–whatever suited the cause.

My wife, formerly a [topic redacted] activist, did the same thing.

My point is, it’s not just “trolls” who do this sort of thing: it’s a concerted effort made by multi-million dollar a year organizations. They particularly want to infiltrate “conservative” groups and slowly introduce their agenda. The more people who profess to be Christians and, for instance, advocate for “gay rights”, the more tolerable the stance becomes. The position gravitates from “unthinkable heresy” to “well, we disagree, but we’re still brothers in Christ” to “acceptance”. It really is that simple, and frankly it works. We need to be cautious of this, and we really need to consider the motives of people introducing foreign ideas, as well as the impact merely tolerating those ideas will have on the future of our group. “Tolerance” is what they rely on.

My $0.02, from someone who’s been on the other side.

We all knew that they were there. Enough of them have been exposed for us to realize that there exists a concerted effort to deceive. But it is useful occasionally to revisit the evidence that we are not imagining this; the effort is real, and the damage is real.

This is why there is no point in dialogue with Progressives as Progressives. They do not believe the laws of decent behavior apply to them. They will lie without compunction to take you in. They will pretend to be interested in dialogue, but they are not. What they are interested in is winning by getting you to treat them politely. You will give ground; they will not. So long as the politeness continues, the culture will move in their direction.

The culture will never move back in the other direction until you identify them for who they are, call them the liars that they are, and take a firm stand on what you know to be the truth. Progressives must be confronted and called out.

Private, personal relationships are a different matter. There is no way to win them to Christ without engaging them personally. However, one must not let them use the relationship as a springboard into activism.

06/08/2011 (12:28 pm)

Hypocrisy: a Checklist

Hi, all. I’m not blogging much these days, but I came across this pithy listing of some of the more hypocritical positions taken by Democrats, and thought it was worth preserving. All of us who think about issues from the conservative side notice these instances of sheer, indefensible hypocrisy from the left — it’s practically the hallmark of their movement — but have become so used to them, because there are so many and they come so regularly, that we tend to forget. Consequently, it’s useful to list them from time to time, to remember who it is that we’re dealing with.

The list came as a comment by a reader who calls himself Voltaire on National Review’s The Corner in response to an article about why Rep. Weiner’s unseemly Twitter behavior matters. Simply put, Weiner is the face of the new Democratic party: smug, aggressive, petulant, bullying, making the surface appearance of moral rectitude and intellectual precision. Underneath, he is a sewer, and unable even to control his own life. This is the evil we confront in the United States: fools who genuinely believe they should control our lives, but can’t even control their own.

Take it away, Voltaire:

OK, let’s deal with the idiotic “…but you hypocrites on the right.”

You want hypocrisy? Fine, try this for size:

1 – Five years ago: Guantanamo was the biggest stain in our national conscience, and had to be closed. Now: Guantanamo? What Guantanamo?

2 – Five years ago: The Patriot Act was the worst usurpation of power by an out-of-control administration, and the frightening ushering of an Orwellian society. Now: Hey, pass me that cool remote pen so I can sign an extension of the Patriot Act from overseas.

3 – Five years ago: 5% unemployment and $2 a gallon gasoline were the proof that the incompetent Bush administration had gotten us in “the worst recession after the great depression.” Now: 9.1% unemployment and $4 a gallon gasoline… trust us, we know what we are doing.

4 – Five years ago: Cindy Sheehan was paraded on every major news show as the conscience of an America that had been dragged into imperialistic conflicts by a war criminal masquerading as a President. Now: Cindy who?

5 – Five years ago: The Iraq war was the worst power grab by a President who bypassed congress to invade a foreign nation so he could line the pockets of Halliburton. Now: Lybia… we went into it because… we didn’t ask congress because… we are backing one side of a civil war because… Hey, who needs reasons when it’s the cool, liberal guy who does all this?

6 – Five years ago: Targeted drone assassinations were the proof we needed that we had a mindless cowboy in the White House, who shot first and asked questions later. Now: Hey, let’s have more!

7 – Five years ago: Partisanship was declared to be the worst form of needless bickering, and we were promised a new age of adult debate and civil discourse. Now: “Punish your enemy”–“Moats and alligators”–“Push grandma off a cliff”–“Let Down syndrome babies scavenge off the streets…”

8 – Rep. Giffords is shot by a mentally-incompetent lunatic: Sarah Palin and her over-the-top rhetoric pushed him to it, and we have to hear about that for weeks. Dec. 12, 2008: Sarah Palin’s church is doused in gasoline and set aflame–with women and children inside. Shhhh… don’t tell anyone…

I could go on and add another 20 points to the list, just off the top of my head. Feminists and Liberal philanderers. Black “civil rights leaders” (I love the expression) and their attempt to destroy anyone who wonders off the Democratic plantation.

Look: you want your guys to win at all costs? Fine. You like gutter-level snipers, smear merchants and attack dogs, as long as they get you the result you want? Fine. But at least, spare us the hypocrisy of the hypocrisy charge.

Remember: if a leftist makes any argument based on morality, principle, law, or justice, they don’t really believe that principle, moral, etc.; they’re just using it for the moment, and will violate it without a thought when it gets in their way. To the left, morals and principles are like beer bottles in a bar-room brawl; when it’s useful, hit someone with it, but then discard it because it’s not really good for anything else. They believe in power to themselves, and in nothing else, because they hold the delusion that they are Right™ and therefore above common morality.

04/02/2010 (10:47 pm)

Homeland Security Meets White Guilt

The Obama administration on Thursday announced changes in their travel policy that abandons the test for extra screening based on nationality alone, and instead allows Homeland Security employees to use criteria educed from intelligence data to search travelers whose profile poses unusual risk, according to the Washington Post. Don’t look now, but the Obamites just embraced — are you ready for this? — profiling.

Knowing that the more extreme searches and precautions adopted in the wake of the Christmas Eve bomber incident would need to be altered before the onset of the summer travel season, the Obama administration introduced rules that will enable scanners to vastly reduce the number, but broadens the range of travelers to be stopped for extra searches. Screeners will be able to detain passengers whose characteristics match certain pieces of known intelligence.

Quoth the WaPo:

The official offered a hypothetical case to illustrate how the new system will work. If U.S. intelligence authorities learned about a terrorism suspect from Asia who had recently traveled to the Middle East, and they knew the suspect’s approximate age but not name or passport number, those fragments would be entered into a database and shared with commercial airline screeners abroad.

The screeners would be instructed to look for people with those traits and to pull them aside for extra searches, the official said, acknowledging that that in some cases, screeners will have to rely on their judgment as they consider the listed traits.

So if we know that a number of terrorists under surveillance happen to be, gee, I dunno, middle eastern men between the ages of 18 and 40, say…

I recall saying before President Obama took office that it was possible that reality would mug him regarding foreign policy and homeland security, and he would be forced to make policy in a more sensible way than his academic preconceptions would have advised him. This is what has taken place in his policy regarding Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay. It now appears to be affecting homeland security. Certainly he knows that a 9/11-style disaster on his watch would cripple his party and his presidency, and he may even care to prevent that from happening for ordinary human reasons (no, I’m not certain that he feels much at that level, but he might).

My initial thought was to lampoon the Washington Post for reporting this without railing about the sheer inhumanity of a policy that allows profiling Muslims young men (among others.) Then I ran a search for articles published in the Post during the Bush years that took conservatives to task for counseling profiling by religion, gender, age, and race to focus on the groups from which nearly all the terrorists have come who have attacked America. I found this by William Raspberry, and this by Colbert King, and this by Eugene Robinson. And reading over them, I noticed something curious that they all had in common:

They were all written by blacks. Specifically, older black men, who might retain some personal experience of racial incidents from the 1960s.

Now, we’re all familiar with the Democratic party’s penchant for using victim shields as a means of stifling debate. We saw it best back when Ann Coulter dared to point out, in her book Godless, how left-leaning newscasters and talk show hosts used the victimhood of four wives of 9/11 victims to intimate that it was immoral and vicious to disagree with their hard-left rants about the Iraq war. Coulter was so impressed by the tactic that her next book, Guilty, recounted the many instances in which the left played the victim while victimizing others. And we’ve more recently seen the Kabuki theater surrounding national health insurance, wherein children and pitiable poor widows were trotted out to tell their heart-rending tales of oppression at the hands of heartless, vicious insurance demons. So it’s hardly a surprise that they’ve laid back and let black men take the point on arguing racial profiling.

Still, I can’t imagine that three separate black columnists took orders from some shadowy Sound Bite Central of the Democratic party. I think that at some level, it’s a natural response of black men who are sensitive to being singled out, to object to singling out anybody. And since it’s a natural response, it’s one we should treat with some respect.

Respect, yes, but not agreement. While I can certainly understand why William Raspberry might feel uneasy about TSA singling out people who look a certain way, his unease does not constitute a sound reason why we should not do it. This is not 1960, and we’re not engaging in an attempt at keeping racial groups pure; we’re protecting ourselves against an invasion.

The confusion between defense and racial prejudice suggests that much of the left’s opposition to sane homeland security measures can be traced to simple White Guilt — white people trying to prove their anti-racist bona fides. They apparently care a lot more about absolving themselves psychologically from oppressing blacks than they do about preventing lethal attacks against their fellow citizens. It’s depressing to consider how badly our culture has been whipped around by this sort of needy vanity. The West may not survive the vast expansion of personal vice; it illustrates the vital role played by good home life and stable families in maintaining civilization.

Obama’s concession to profiling marks a rare adult moment in his administration’s brief tenure. Maybe we’ll manage to survive the next 3 years without a truly major terrorist incident.

03/08/2010 (10:06 am)

We're Just Too Stupid

George Will slammed Robert Reich to the mat on ABC News’ Roundtable yesterday over one of his recitations of Democratic party lies about health care — and please make no mistake, they are lies, not disagreements. Reich responded by what he considered a sure rebuttal, and gave away the core of the Democratic party belief structure — the notion that the American people are just too damned stupid to make their own health care decisions, and need the help of those incredibly bright liberals to make them for them, for their own good. Listen:

I’ve had a handful of serious conversations with sincere liberals over the years, on the rare occasions that they decided for some reason that it was worthwhile to make an attempt to understand the mentally challenged like me. In each instance, at some point in the conversation they revealed at the core of their thinking the same contemptuous notion: the average citizen in America has no idea how to run his own life, and needs to be directed in order to prevent him from destroying the world. It really is the foundation stone of progressive belief.

Where they get the evidence supporting the notion that they, the progressives, have been any more successful in ordering their lives than the average American, I can only guess. For my part, I’m with William Buckley, and would rather pick 200 citizens at random to make governmental decisions than allow the progressives’ 200 best minds to do it.

By the way, Reich’s first statement is the biggest lie of all. Nobody serious regards health care as the signature issue of our time; it doesn’t even appear on the lists of major issues when the American people are polled, except when the Democrats have manufactured yet another attempt to force national health care down the nation’s throat. What makes health care a major issue for Democrats is its usefulness in creating a permanent bureaucratic majority. They push the topic because it produces power for them, period.

03/05/2010 (5:01 pm)

The Cutting and the Crying: Suck It Up

I picked up on two reports today from around the country that highlight citizen complaints in response to government cutbacks, another sign of what we should expect through the coming decade.

In the first, students at universities around the country are protesting the cutting of state funding for education, and apparently doing so in a disruptive fashion, blocking freeways and freeway on-ramps, slugging police officers, pulling fire alarms for no reason, and so forth.

The article reporting this, written by a half-dozen AP reporters, is a prime instance of leftist media bias, in that it carefully masks the political orientation of the protesters. It also avoids producing a hard count of the protesters, although one particular protest at UC Davis apparently produced about 300 people. The writers attempt to make this into a revolt by Everyman:

Students, teachers, parents and school employees rallied and marched Thursday at college campuses, public parks and government buildings in many U.S. cities in what was called the March 4 Day of Action to Defend Public Education.

Of course, this was a nationally-coordinated effort by hard leftists. Check the list of sponsors for the March 4th Strike and Day of Action in defense of public education in California; it reads like an exhaustive list of unions, union organizers, and hard-left action committees. We’re looking here at the classic strategy of neo-Marxists, using growing political instability as a springboard for fomenting revolution.

Imagine how the Tea Parties would have been reported if any of them had produced even a fraction of the deliberate, disruptive action this small protest produced.

The second instance is closer to grass roots. Citizens in Arizona are starting to complain about the state closing down highway rest stops as a cost-cutting measure. It apparently costs the state about $300,000 a year to keep a single rest stop clean and functional. The state closed 13 out of 18 rest stops; this is clearly only one of dozens of measures they’ll be taking to save money, as the Arizona Dept of Transportation is about $100 million in the red.

Frankly, I can appreciate the importance of a stop in the desert as well as the next man, but this highlights the sort of re-adjustment we’re all going to face in the coming years. The simple fact is that we have all gotten used to government activism in any number of public functions, a level of activism that government simply cannot sustain over the long haul. Even in a good economy, government cannot guarantee that your life will be easy, and will go bankrupt if it tries.

In 1997, my wife was incapacitated for about 6 months, and I had to take on the role of Mr. Mom. I had four kids aged from 6 to 16, and we had one television. I attempted to arbitrate the use of it so that each got to watch at least one show they really liked, but so they did not watch too much. That attempt failed, and they were all spending too much time in front of the tube; so one day, in a moment of lucid frustration, I unplugged the damned thing from right in front of the four of them, and carried it out to the curb.

The outcome was remarkable. The kids complained bitterly from the lack of TV for about a month. Then, suddenly, they all discovered reading and board games, and the complaints stopped. Suddenly, they were all using their brains during their leisure time. It was one of the best moves I ever made.

I bring it up because it illustrates what is going to happen as government recedes from our lives by necessity, as we start forcing government to live within its means. We’re not going to like losing what we have to lose. We’re going to feel the pain. We’re going to complain. And then, once we’ve gotten it out of our system, truckers will start carrying their own port-a-potties in the backs of their trucks, and we’ll learn to do without rest stops. Parents will start saving for college educations again instead of counting on the state to provide it for free. We’ll all begin doing for ourselves again.

So, expect to see two types of citizen unrest in the coming years: organized, opportunistic attempts to produce revolution, and sincere, well-intentioned griping about losing important services. Regarding the third type, citizens rebelling against an intrusive and overbearing government, let’s hope we don’t have to produce anything more disruptive than those actions we have already produced.

02/27/2010 (11:22 am)

Patriot Act Renewal Highlights Dem Duplicity

Both the Senate and the House covertly passed legislation this week extending the Patriot Act for a full year, Politico reported Thursday. Already withering before the wrath of an endangered public over the Ft. Hood massacre, the KnickerBomber, and the attempt to try Khalid Sheik Mohammad in New York City, Congressional Democrats lacked the cojones to publicly dismantle yet another mechanism that protects the American public from violence. The quiet capitulation signals a disconnect between Congressional Democrats and their base, which consistently regards the Patriot act as an assault on their liberty.

The Senate passed the extension bill in a late-night session by unanimous voice vote, which allows Senators to obscure from their constituents the fact that they voted for the bill. The House passed their version as part of a bundle of extensions grouped under a Medicare reform act. The press release by Congressional Democrats mentioned only the failure of the Congress to adopt some additional privacy protections proposed by the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Meanwhile, comments around the Internet from Democrats continue to demonstrate how well the DNC sold its opposition to the Patriot Act — after voting for it almost unanimously in the wake of the 9/11 attack. The base hates the Patriot Act, mostly for invalid reasons. Here are a few comments from yesterday’s discussions at CNN and Democratic Underground (R-rated for language and for incomprehensibly odd thinking):

Pedro: Funny that so many GOP respondents think the government is a threat given that it was the Bush administration that tried to do away with Habeas Corpus and had the military and NSA listening in on the phone conversations of American citizens without having to secure a warrant.

Yeah, I for one feel much safer with the government now.

Why now? Why didn’t all these whiners take to the streets when George WWWWW Bush was in the process of eroding our civil rights, having telecom companies spying on us, capturing our data, and tightening our ability to move freely in the country and to Canada?

Why now? WHAT? What are these people talking about? Whine to the Republicans who TOOK YOUR FREEDOMS AWAY!

You’re all a bunch of looney-tune wackos!

I swear, they have mountains of evidence that it really isn’t effective and that in actuality, it’s illegal .. you have to wonder, who makes the big bucks by continuing this? Greed again rears its ugly head.

Yes, yes, but its DEMOCRATS taking away your rights. They only uphold the Republican status quo.

They don’t invent devious new shit. If you don’t vote for Democrats then Republicans will come in and invent more devious shit that Democrats will have to uphold. Of course, sometimes Democrats also have to invent devious new shit–like destroying public education and forcing Americans to buy shitty, overpriced insurance policies. But those are devious shits that Republicans could never get away with, so the Democrats must take on those issues.

Bipartisanship: Now Everyone’s Fucking You Over.

I discussed at length the legality of the wiretapping authorized under the Patriot Act back when it was a relevant topic. You can review that discussion here, if you like. However, it may not be necessary to do that, as it appears that leaders of the Democratic party agree that the Patriot Act is essential. In discussing this week’s action with Politico, Sen. Joe Lieberman (I, CT), who chairs the Homeland Security Committee in the Senate, very quietly observed that the Patriot Act does not deserve its bad reputation:

“In the end, it became non-controversial,” Senate Committee on Homeland Security Chairman Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) told POLITICO. “[There was] the growing concern about increase on the pace of attacks on the homeland… and frankly, I think the Patriot [Act] got a bad name under the Bush Administration.”

Lieberman said FBI Director Robert Mueller and Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano emphasized to his committee the importance of extending the three renewed provisions: authorizing court-approved roving wiretaps that cover multiple phones or computers a suspect may use, court-approved search and seizures, and allowing surveillance of “lone wolf” non-U.S. citizens not affiliated with organized terrorist groups.

What comes through loud and clear is that many, responsible Democrats consider the Patriot Act both necessary and legal. They obviously do not want to try to make that case to their base, however. That makes their continued support of the Patriot Act worse than merely cowardly; it makes it duplicitous. They love the agitation of the base, but they also need the utility of the bill if they’re going to prevent an attack on their watch.

Of course, part of the reason they prefer to keep the Patriot Act in place could be because they intend to use it on American citizens. The Obama administration has not said as much, but some of the comments from the base suggest that the thought may have occurred to them:

Absolutely necessary to keep an eye on the Teabaggers

Now Obama, not Bush, can get you! Be very afraid racists!

They’re against (imagined) violations of liberty, except when it’s the liberty of their opponents. How noble.

If you’re curious, here’s a reasonably thorough (if somewhat negatively biased) discussion of which provisions of the Patriot Act need periodic renewal. In general, the portions of the Act that require periodic renewal extend the ability of the FBI to surveil agents of foreign governments without probable cause of a crime, allow the FBI to obtain and view the sort of information contained in email headers and caller ID, grant the FBI leave to obtain warrants in cases possibly involving chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons and in cases involving computer fraud, allow the FBI to share grand jury and surveillance information with national security operatives when necessary (breaching the famous “wall” between foreign and domestic surveillance,) allow for surveillance of all communications of a suspect without requiring a warrant for each specific phone number (called “roving wiretaps”,) give the FBI power to obtain a warrant to examine business and library records, allow the FBI to track the communications of “computer trespassers” without alerting the trespasser, and a few other details.

This is not the first time the Democrats have signaled the inconsistency between their vocal, public advocacy and their actual recognition of the need for sound protective measures. I wrote about the same disconnect when the Democrats renewed the FISA law two years ago. This sort of duplicity is not an occasional thing for Democrats, it’s the normal pattern.

02/19/2010 (10:43 pm)

Yglasias Brain Hiccup

Matthew Yglasias’ take on John Stack’s IRS kamikaze mission seems to be that this is terrorism, dammit, and the right is being hypocritical by not calling “terrorism” and reacting to Stack as we do to acts of Islamic terrorism.

I think it’s very clear that if this had been done by a brownish-looking Muslim guy whose suicide note paralleled Islamist political themes that the right wing would be pissing its pants and demanding that anyone who refused the label the attack “terrorism” be put up on treason charges. But the new rules seem to be that politically motivated violence when undertaken by white people isn’t terrorism.

Here, Matt, I think I can help: if there existed a cadre of 160,000,000 Joe Stacks, and they were all training their children to fly airplanes into government buildings, I can assure you that plenty of conservatives would be addressing the problem of Tax Terrorism. We’re not ginning up terrorism watches, Matt, because he was alone. I actually have no idea what color he was. And no, his note didn’t really parallel anybody’s political themes, unless you think the average Tea Partier hates capitalism and religion.

Speaking of large numbers of nut cases, though, have you noticed than whenever somebody is engaging in breathtakingly bad logic while drawing attention to somebody’s skin color, it’s always a hard leftie? One might infer that the American left is full of intellectually bereft people obsessed with race. You might want to watch that, Matt.

02/19/2010 (4:37 pm)

Tea Party Anniversary Day, and A Little Reminder

fireCommemorating the day when Rick Santelli first called for a Tea Party in Chicago, the mainstream press and its friends on the hard left are attempting to pin a lone murder/suicide on the Tea Party movement.

A software engineer with a grudge against the IRS went postal yesterday and flew his Piper PA-28 airplane into the IRS office building in Austin, TX, killing himself and at least one other person. Before taking the action, though, he posted a fervid rant on the Internet and burned his house down. Steve Spruiell at the National Review predicted a knee-jerk attempt to pin the action on the Tea Party movement a few minutes ahead of the first MSM report doing exactly that. More attempts followed.

I suppose it’s not impossible that the demented fellow attended a rally or two, but it’s not all that likely. His rant includes accusing corporate capitalists of committing “scores of atrocities,” calls those who organize religion “monsters,” accuses the American medical system of committing murders, and compares the IRS to the Catholic Inquisition. If this sounds “similar to the alienation we’re hearing from the extreme elements of the Tea Party movement” to Capehart at the WaPo, it’s probably because he has a bigoted and ill-informed view of that movement.

Of course, the left has similarly been attempting to discredit the Tea Party movement from the beginning. Just yesterday I posted regarding the Clintonistas planning their slam attacks, but that’s just the latest in a long string of ineffectual fulminations. Michelle Malkin’s cheat sheet on the Tea Party movement’s origins from last April included this little summary of the early attempts to pooh-pooh the obviously genuine grassroots movement:

And along the way, detractors have fumbled and bumbled over how to discredit the Tea Party organizers — first blaming a cabal tied to CNBC, then jeering at the amateurishness of the participants before crying “astroturf,” then claiming the events were “financed by Fox News” or (fill-in-the-blank) conservative conspiracy, then smearing the protesters as crazed gun nuts (FNC’s Bob Beckel) and racists (FNC’s Geraldo Rivera).

A handful of psychologists might provide some interesting clues regarding why they feel the need to do this, but I think it’s a combination of snobbery and envy. Leftists disdain the average American, thinking him an under-educated, unthinking dolt incapable of managing his own life (and “clinging to guns and religion…”) If the Proles are restless, it must be something really stupid that they’re restless about, right? But then again, the energy of the Tea Parties is so real that it exposes leftist agitation for the put-on that it is; leftists spend a great deal of their emotional energy affecting rage over issues that were relevant no more recently than 1972. They’re jealous of those who belong to a movement that’s actually relevant. Remind yourselves of FireDogLake’s Jane Hamsher’s sour-grapes denunciation from her failed attempt to counter with a leftist anti-Tea-Party last April (hat tip to Frank Strategies for the vid):

Sad and pathetic. “Financed by Fox News” turns out to mean “reported by Fox News,” in a little demonstration of FDL’s journalistic ethics (follow the Frank Strategies link above the video). Not to mention that Hamsher has about the scariest eyes I’ve seen in a year; there’s something wrong with that woman.

hellno_IneedHowever badly they want to make the entire Tea Party movement look loony, they can’t, because it’s not loony; it’s authentic grassroots Americana. The Tea Party movement, at its core, is simply individuals who have taken the basic soundness of the political system for granted most of their lives, but who have come to realize that the entire system is failing them. They stand for simple, straightforward virtues like individual liberty, fiscal sanity, limited government, free markets, and reward for honest labor. They believe that neither party represents those interests reliably, that both parties have abandoned them in favor of personal nest-feathering and ideologies headed in the wrong direction. They have chosen to exercise their Constitutional right as the People from whom the authority of government arises, and are petitioning the government for redress of their grievances. Gatherings totaling everything from a dozen to a million have met peacefully all over the nation to make these petitions public. If that’s loony, then God bless us for a nation of loons, ’cause that seems sane, decent, and appropriate to me.

It frightens the government because it threatens their jobs and their power. It frightens the left because it stands directly in the path of the progressive march toward neo-fascist statism and says “hell no.” Neither is reacting well.

Let’s all remind ourselves how it started: an outraged reaction against the government bailing out distressed and possibly undeserving mortgage-holders using hundreds of billions of dollars that simply were not available (speaking of how we got a $1.6 trillion deficit). A handful of home-schooling moms around the country organized rallies, footing the $50 municipal permits out of their own pockets, and a movement was born. A few days later, Rick Santelli of CNN made his famous rant from the trading floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange:

My own reaction was here.

If you think of it, offer a prayer of thanksgiving and blessing toward the “professional organizer” who started the whole thing rolling, Keli Carender. Better yet, why not get involved yourself in the next Tea Party gathering? This is America, after all, and even if the dollar is toast, We the People are still the sole source of authority here.

02/16/2010 (4:51 pm)

Root, Blind Hog


Democrats are scrambling for explanations for the impending electoral disaster in the wake of Evan Bayh’s retirement announcement yesterday, according to Sam Stein at Huffington Post. It’s like watching a blind hog rooting for acorns. And we who understand how toxic the Democratic party policies are, hope they continue to root in similar fashion.

Listen to the “wisdom:”

Markos Moulitsas, the founder of the blog Daily Kos, said that the best way for Democrats to salvage the fate of the party before the 2010 elections is clear: “Deliver on their campaign promises.”

“No one is asking them to go out on a limb and do something they didn’t first run by the American people,” Moulitsas said, in an email to the Huffington Post. “The Dems are where they are because they got elected promising to be a party able to govern, and then spent the last year proving themselves wrong.”

Absolutely. Attempting to ram a health care disaster down the nation’s throats that 65% of Americans believe will make things worse, after declaring a health care crisis in an environment where 85% of Americans express satisfaction with their current health care, is certainly not asking anyone to go out on a limb to do something they didn’t run by the American people first. No, sir. You just keep talking, Markos.

And then there’s Lanny Davis:

On the opposite end of the Democratic Party spectrum, Lanny Davis, a longtime Clinton confidant and purveyor of the politics of compromise, offered a similar diagnosis.

“I know this will work because of what happened to Bill Clinton,” Davis said of the ability of policy accomplishments to turn around a poor narrative. “[President Obama’s] failure to pass something showed him to be an ineffectual president. And the absence of effectiveness combined with the cynicism of government because of that absence of effectiveness… is toxic. It is Barack Obama that has to change that dynamic, and do it in a dramatic fashion to show he is an effective president.”

Yes, that’s it, Lanny. America is disappointed that President Obama did not succeed in passing everything that he has proposed. Keep saying that, Lanny. Please.

Kos Kid again:

“Republicans never doubt their agenda, and will use any tool at their disposal to ram it through,” Moulitsas wrote. “Democrats have internalized the criticisms about their agenda… dilly and dally and beg Republicans to join them… instead of following the lead of their opponents.”

Fascinating. I wonder what Markos calls midnight meetings, locking out opposition party members, voting on bills that have not even been read, bribing moderates with pork, threatening lack of re-election support, lying, demonizing, and all the rest. What tool did Democrats not use in their attempt to pass health care legislation, military assault? The irony is so thick you can cut it. But please, Markos, please keep talking this way.

Listen to Tad Devine:

Tad Devine, another longtime Democratic hand was just as blunt, advising lawmakers not to be wary of re-introducing voters to the previous White House’s record.

“We as Democrats seem to think there was some sort of sunset provision on the Bush administration,” Devine said. “That an administration that nearly bankrupted the country… is something that after six months we can’t even talk about any more is absurd. We have to be like Reagan and always remind people of the situation we walked into.”

Oooooh, yeah. Blame Bush. That’ll do the trick. Just keep on telling them that,Tad.

It would be hilariously funny if they were not so completely destructive. It does not even begin to occur to them that somewhere between 60% and 80% of the nation is dead-set opposed to turning more of their lives over to government, and opposed to increasing government spending in any significant way. They’re missing the central point: what they believe is the right thing for America, most Americans reject.

Mr. Kos is right on one item, but he does not know it. When he says “deliver on campaign promises,” if he meant for Obama to actually become what he promised he was during the election season, it might actually work. He posed as a post-partisan moderate; it was a lie. He’s a hard leftist, and has governed as one. The Democrats could salvage some credibility if they dropped their vicious tactics, their vicious rhetoric, their character assassination assaults, their doctored statistics, and actually cooperated in government with opposition party members to produce the sort of economically sensible, limited government most Americans want. But then they’d have to become something they’re not.

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