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Saturday, February 04, 2006
Big Protest Against President Bush in Washington--Updated

In case you missed it, here's a report on the World Can't Wait demonstration in Washington, DC, where the participants were calling for President Bush to step down. This guy gets points for creativity:

This guy doesn't:

Uh, it's a box with stickers and legs. Why, what does it look like?

No antiwar, not anti-American protest would be complete without this ritual:

Fortunately the weather cooperated:

Story at the WaPo is entertaining although the headline had me puzzled:

Damp in Numbers But Not in Fervor

Surely he means "small in numbers?"

As he waited for a 30-foot-high effigy of President George W. Bush to fall, Freddy Taiefero told the story of how he ended up here. Homeless in Atlanta a day ago, he now was amid a few thousand protesters on the soggy ground by the Washington Monument.

"They were passing out these leaflets, and I picked one up at the homeless shelter," said the 56-year-old unemployed caterer. "Bush's administration causes joblessness. . . . When he got in, it was like the world was snatched up from under us."

And yes, Liberal Tourette's syndrome was in evidence:

After a series of speakers, organizers dropped a wire-fashioned effigy of Bush off the stage. The crowd, which was already at a roar, chanted in unison: "Bush step down! Bush step down!" After it fell onto the muddy lawn, many took a kick at the soggy frame. More than a few shouted obscenities before the crowd set off for the march around the White House.

Update: Don't miss this gal's firsthand report:

Before we set upon the march to the White House there was a Saddam Square-style toppling of the wire Bush effigy accompanied by the burning of the flag of the United Corporations of America (that'?s the flag that looks like the American flag but has corporate logos instead of stars). I have never been in the presence of a burning flag and when I felt the heat across my face I was grateful because it was so cold but I also felt like I was in Palestine or Pakistan. It was very exciting and edgy and I felt as if I should remove my sneaker and start beating myself with it, or at least beat the effigy. Then when the effigy of Bush came down, it came toward me. As I backed up, people descended upon it and kicked it, stomped it, beat it and screamed at it. I gave it a weak kick, but I kept my sneaker on.

How huge was the protest? The WaPo estimates:

The actual numbers were in the low thousands and varied depending upon how hard it was raining. If antiwar T-shirts were in abundance, they were hidden by sweaters that were covered by jackets that were shadowed by umbrellas.

While the local ABC affiliate comes in lower:

Holding signs that read "Bush Step Down," about a thousand protesters have been marching on the National Mall and near the White House to protest the president and his policies.

On the size issue, Danegerus has a picture that says it all: More Toilets than Protesters.

But a good time was had by all:

Michelle Malkin has more coverage of the protest, including some pretty vile signs. Rhymes with Right is outraged.
When Will Lefty Bloggers Respond to Latest Downing Street Memo?

The following was faxed to me from the Trafalgar Square Kinko's:

What the State Department Really Said

Rick Moran took a closer look at the State Department's comments on the Mohammed cartoons controversy and discovered that--surprise, surprise--the media didn't report the whole story.

As I commented on his post, we can defend their right to publish the cartoons without saying, "They're right to publish the cartoons".
Kuttner Lives On Another Planet

One would think that a raging lefty like Kuttner would applaud the "elections" of socialist/far left candidates in Latin and South America, but not Kuttner. It's "Who Lost Bolivia?" in his column today:

Enter George W. Bush. He offered the worst possible combination of strategies -- unilateral swagger, combined with loudly proclaimed promotion of democracy. Should anyone be surprised when the democratic elections produce a string of repudiations?

And of course, in the meantime, the people of Germany and Canada endorsed the Bush policy, no doubt?
Fiddling With the Netroots

Peter Beinart says that Carville and Begala are trying to subvert Kos and Company with a new book, but doubts it will work:

Carville and Begala, by contrast, while flaying a mythic party elite, don't want to turn power over to the activists. How could they? While the Deaniacs loathe political consultants, the authors are political consultants. "No one pines for the days of amateur attorneys or amateur doctors," they argue. But today, many grassroots Democrats do pine for the days of amateur politics. In Take It Back , Carville and Begala are trying to pull a bait and switch -- hijacking the Deaniacs' outsider rhetoric while retaining the insider structure that the Deaniacs revile.

In their hearts, Carville and Begala are Clintonites: They think liberal activists are valuable but only if harnessed by political professionals with a keen eye for the swing-voting center. The best thing about Take It Back is its smart tips for how to update the strategy they employed so winningly in 1992 for 2008 and beyond. But the most telling thing about Take It Back is its unwillingness to argue frankly for such a strategy -- because doing so would lead them into conflict with the increasingly powerful party activists who see the Clinton model as obsolete or worse. Carville and Begala may think they are the ones doing the co-opting, but the truth may be closer to the reverse.

Now, there are several interesting things about this article. First, Beinart himself has called for purging the Democrats of some of their more outrageous elements: Michael Moore and So it would seem likely that he would be on Carville and Begala's side: Co-opt the power of the "netroots" and harness it into something useful. I can only assume that there's some bad blood between Beinart and the dynamic duo.

In addition, it's at least questionable whether Beinart's message will be applauded by the Kossacks, given that he's the editor of the New Republic, which many Democrat activist excoriate as being the flagship magazine of Democratic moderates.
Friday, February 03, 2006
How Ironic Is It?

That the Rolling Stones have been chosen to highlight the halftime entertainment at the Super Bowl on the basis that they won't be controversial?
Return of the Wildman

Our longtime blogging buddy Wild Bill of Passionate America is back after a one-year absence. Welcome back, Bill!
Like I Said

It's the form that the protests take, not that the cartoons themselves are acceptable.

Update: Hugh Hewitt agrees!
The Lighter Side

Mr Right has a look at the Democratic Family Album. You'll love the pic of Cindy Sheehan!

Buckley F. Williams has the White House's official reaction to Julian Bond's comparison of President Bush to Hitler.

The People's Cube has a schematic diagram of a liberal's brain.
Smear My Rear

This article labors mightily to convince us that the Vermont judge who sentenced a child rapist to 60 days in prison was smeared by the media.

So, let's take a hard look at whether the perp could have gotten out in 60 days:

While it did make clear that Cashman’s sentence “could incarcerate Hulett for the rest of his life if he fails to obtain counseling or otherwise follow instructions,” it made it seem like it was certain that the defendant would be freed in 60 days. There was no mention of the fact that the maximum portion of the incarcerative sentence was 10 years.

Well, of course the crucial question is what the defendant had to do in order to be free in 60 days. It's not spelled out, but this certainly indicates it was not a lot:

The defendant pled guilty to three crimes pursuant to an agreement that gave him the chance to withdraw his plea if he was sentenced to more than 90 days to serve.

So it pretty much sounds like everybody agreed that this was a 60-day sentence. Given what the defendant apparently admitted to doing to that young girl (six years old when the perp started abusing her) it seems like a ridiculously light sentence.

Of particular interest to me in this story is that the writer apparently did not watch O'Reilly and Hannity & Colmes; instead he relies on blogger accounts of what happened on those shows.

The national media firestorm soon began. The Hannity & Colmes show on Fox on the evening of Jan. 5 carried an account which repeated the mistakes from the WCAX story. “Keep an eye on Hannity’s programs . . . he has been all over this since last night,” a blogger wrote the next morning. “He just had a Vermont state rep on his show tonight, and point-blank asked how we could get this judge removed from the bench.”

Also, get this bit:

As far as the judge’s position on “punishment,” the Joyce account was likewise wrong. What Judge Cashman actually said was “I keep telling prosecutors, and they won’t hear me, that punishment is not enough.” The judge said that he had “started out as a just deserts sentencer,” but he had “discovered it [retribution] accomplishes nothing of value … doesn’t make anything better, . . . and costs us a lot of money.” He now realized a sentence must “solve a problem” so that “people are better off after the sentencing than they were before.”

What people? The perp? The victim? Society?
More Cartoon Anger

GOP & the City has the latest outrage to hit the religion of peace.
It's Not Really Art

When you have to add words to it:

The painting is bordered with hand lettered expressions and names including "mujahadin," "McCarthyism," and "Amadou Diallo," a man killed by New York City police in 1999.
Cindy Broke No Laws

This time around.

Nor did this seventh grader, although he needs assistance with his mental health. As does Cindy.

Thursday, February 02, 2006
Thanks to Mr Snitch!

My post on faith and logic got cited as one of the best blog posts of 2005.

There are some really cool posts over there; some of which I linked and read last year, many that I missed and realized how great they were. Terrific job!
Survivor Exile

Starts with four teams of four, arranged by age and sex. We might call them the old pharts, the old bags, the young gals and the young studs. They arrive at Exile Island, where one player or another will be periodically marooned. Jeff starts them off with a reward challenge; three of the tribes will get fire, while one will not only lose out on the fire, but will also have one of their members stranded on the island.

The challenge is to race to the other end of the isle, smash skulls, and look inside for an amulet. The young studs and the old pharts finish early, and it's down to the two female teams. When somebody finally arrives back, it's one of the old bags. The young gals get the disadvantage to start.

Typical young women, though, they can't accept that it's fair for the gal who ran the challenge to stay behind, and Misty (who was not the runner) loses a game of rock/paper/scissors. She's stuck behind. But Probst is not done. He explains that somewhere on the island is an immunity idol. And unlike last season, whoever finds it can hold it until after a vote, thus hosing whoever finishes with the second number of votes. Looks like Mark Burnett reads my blog, because that was exactly what I suggested last season.

Probst tells Misty something like her fate is behind her, which of course is not a lot to go on. Misty spends a fair amount of time searching for the idol, but it appears she does not find it. Still, she's smart enough to decide to hint that she's found it.

When she shows up at the immunity challenge, however, she perhaps overplays her hand, making it clear that she's found the idol. Will folks believe her? The challenge involves freeing a raft that's clipped to an anchor, paddling that to shore, then loosing a ring from a puzzle and using it to hook a grappling iron to pull down the tribe's flag. First three teams will win immunity, only the last will have to go to tribal council.

The young gals unclip first, followed by the old pharts and the old bags. Surprisingly, the young studs have trouble and eventually have to switch men to get the task started. They are fairly far behind at this point.

At the beach, the teams have the option of trying to do the puzzle, or digging up a clue. All teams decide to do both, with two diggers and two solvers. Fortunately Bobby Jon's not around.

The young gals finish first, while the old pharts follow. The young studs make up the time lost on the raft and finish first; the old bags have the first tribal council!

Tina, who reveals to the camera that her only son had died in a car accident only a few weeks before Survivor began, spends some time off on her own when she should be plotting. She's clearly the most valuable member of her tribe, but Cerie (who's out of shape and fearful) begins talking nonsense about how she doesn't want to have to "beat" Tina in a contest. It's as stupid as you can imagine, but in the end either it works or Tina's loner aspects due to her grief leave her vulnerable and she loses the vote.

It's an incredibly stupid move, reminiscent of the idiots on Survivor All-Stars who started voting off players as "threats". As I said at the time, "threats" threaten to win challenges for your tribe. The old bags are not going to last long in this game.

It's early in the game so only a few people impressed themselves on my mind. Bruce, the Japanese- American old phart looks like he's going to be quite a player. Terry and Dan allied up and it turns out that Dan's a former astronaut while Terry's a former Navy pilot. So the old pharts are not going to go gentle into that good night.
Underage Lesbian Porn At New York Magazine

There was a time I might have found this story titillating. Now it just makes me yawn, because it's so PC.

When asked how many of her female friends have had same-sex experiences, Alair answers, “All of them.” Then she stops to think about it. “All right, maybe 80 percent. At least 80 percent of them have experimented. And they still are. It’s either to please a man, or to try it out, or just to be fun, or ’cause you’re bored, or just ’cause you like it . . . whatever.”

With teenagers there is always a fair amount of posturing when it comes to sex, a tendency to exaggerate or trivialize, innocence mixed with swagger. It’s also true that the “puddle” is just one clique at Stuyvesant, and that Stuyvesant can hardly be considered a typical high school. It attracts the brightest public-school students in New York, and that may be an environment conducive to fewer sexual inhibitions. “In our school,” Elle says, “people are getting a better education, so they’re more open-minded.”
Marching to My Own Drummer

I've been watching the fur fly on this whole Danish cartoon story, and wondering what the fuss is all about, especially when contrasted with this other story about a cartoon which has outraged people.

Personally, I agree with the outrage over the Toles cartoon. I'm not personally outraged over the Danish cartoons, but I can understand the Muslims being angry. Now the question is what form that anger takes. When it's calls for boycotts of Danish products in Muslim nations, it's perfectly appropriate. I mean, we're only a few weeks past the Book of Daniel debacle, and I would not have objected to anybody who suggested boycott of that show's sponsors.

When it's death threats and the like, then clearly the response is inappropriate. But that doesn't mean the cartoons themselves are okay. Let's go back to the Book of Daniel. If some wacko had threatened to kill the show's producers, or the actors themselves, we'd all tut-tut that the response was inappropriate and extreme. But would we then decide that we now had to watch the series, or that its message needed to be spread further? Or that legitimate forms of protest against the show, like letter-writing campaigns, were now beyond the pale?

Go back to the original stories about this and you'll see that the Danish newspaper intended to provoke a reaction--just as the Book of Daniel and Tom Toles disgusting cartoon were, just as Joel Stein's pathetic piece in the LA Times was.

Juste said he wanted to counter growing "self censorship" and see how many cartoonists would be "bold enough" to draw the Prophet.

So to me, it's not that the protest itself is illegitimate, it's the form the protest takes. I am willing to take Muslims at their word that cartoons of the Prophet are objectionable to them, just as I take Christians at their word that the depictions in the Book of Daniel were objectionable to them, just as I hope people will take my word that the depiction of the US soldier in Toles' cartoon was objectionable to me.
The Real Reason for the Global Warming Yelps

Robert Newman lets the cat out of the bag, unintentionally of course.

There is no meaningful response to climate change without massive social change. A cap on this and a quota on the other won't do it. Tinker at the edges as we may, we cannot sustain earth's life-support systems within the present economic system.

Capitalism is not sustainable by its very nature. It is predicated on infinitely expanding markets, faster consumption and bigger production in a finite planet. And yet this ideological model remains the central organising principle of our lives, and as long as it continues to be so it will automatically undo (with its invisible hand) every single green initiative anybody cares to come up with.

Of course, as Tim Worstall points out, that's a bunch of hooey. But Newman's article does back up what Rush has been saying for years, that these are watermelon environmentalists--green on the outside but red (as in communists) on the inside. I suspect most of the modern environmental movement started out with the hatred of capitalism. Why is capitalism better for people than communism or socialism? Because it provides growth. Ergo if you eliminate growth as a desireable end, communism and socialism don't look quite so bad.

On these pages we have been called on to admire capital's ability to take robust action while governments dither. All hail Wal-Mart for imposing a 20% reduction in its own carbon emissions. But the point is that supermarkets are over. We cannot have such long supply lines between us and our food. Not any more. The very model of the supermarket is unsustainable, what with the packaging, food miles and destruction of British farming. Small, independent suppliers, processors and retailers or community-owned shops selling locally produced food provide a social glue and reduce carbon emissions. The same is true of food co-ops such as Manchester's bulk-distribution scheme serving former "food deserts".

This is the brand of "let's all get back to the land" hippie environmentalism from the 1960s, dressed up a bit. Not all of us have to be farmers, but a heck of a lot more do, and we all get our food locally. Never mind that this is inefficient, that it lays us open to famine, that it makes cities impractical. Hey hey ho ho, the supermarket has got to go!
Nice Story about a Nice Guy

This is short and sweet.
Wednesday, February 01, 2006
Patricia Madrid Soaks Campaign for Niece

Mario Burgos, another one of the Blogs for Heather, did a little checking on Patricia Madrid's campaign spending and found a nice little tidbit:

A niece stepping up out of love to help out her Auntie. Oops, what's that on the campaign report? Apparently, love and family is all well in good, but in the Madrid family they come from the "Show Me the Money" school. It seems Auntie Madrid's favorite niece is pulling down a cool $4,326 plus expenses every month.

I'm kind of amused by the notion of Joe Lieberman getting a primary challenge from a fellow Democrat, although I certainly hope he retains his seat (since he is unlikely to be defeated by a Republican). But get the nerve of his challenger, Ned Lamont:

What's the next step? Ned has stated that he will not move beyond the exploratory phase of a campaign until at least 1,000 people in Connecticut have signed up to volunteer. So no matter where you live, this is a chance to make history. Please sign up today!
Cursing Liberally

Gotta enjoy this article:

Toward the end of the speech, it sounded as if several members of the group were suffering from a unique, left-wing strain of Tourette's syndrome.

"You (blank)!"

"God, I wish he would shut the (blank) up!"

It was a special night for the Seattle chapter of Drinking Liberally, a group of left-leaning folks who meet weekly at the Montlake Ale House to imbibe and talk politics.

It's another name for Bush Derangement Syndrome: Liberal Tourette's.
Gang of 14 Deal Working for Republicans?

John McIntyre of Real Clear Politics asks if conservatives owe John McCain an apology for the thunder with which they greeted the announcement of the Gang of 14 Deal. As the Swiss delegate of the Coalition of the Chillin', I am officially neutral.

Unofficially, I don't think there's any doubt that the Republicans seem to have won fairly decisively. There's a good argument to be made that without the Gang of 14, we would have seen a filibuster of Justice Alito. The Democrats on that group are as follows:

Joe Lieberman, Robert Byrd, Ben Nelson, Mary Landrieu, Daniel Inouye, Mark Pryor and Ken Salazar.

Every single one of them voted for cloture (i.e., against the filibuster). Byrd and Nelson even defied their caucus and voted in favor of confirmation (both are up for reelection this year in Red States.

That's not to say that the deal might not turn around and bite the Republicans four years from now if President Hillary Clinton, say, nominates Susan Estrich for the high court. But for now I gotta hand it to McCain's mutiny; it seems to have worked out well for us.
H-Bomb for NH GOP Chairman!

I'm not voting for him because he's Irish, I'm voting for him because I'm Irish!

Seriously, Pat makes a good point here:

The NH-GOP needs an aggressive, nasty partisan who will drive the GOP agenda (some would say we need to figure out what the GOP agenda in New Hampshire is, first) and won't care that the entire City of Concord (the capitol) hates his or her guts.
Competitive House Races for 2006

Just did some surfing around Larry Sabato's Crystal Ball website for information on the races for House of Representatives that he considers the most competitive.

Sabato estimates that 30 seats are truly competitive this year. Of those, 10 are held by the Democrats, 19 are held by Republicans and one is held by Socialist Bernie Sanders. Among the competitive seats there are only five open seats (that is, where the incumbent representative is not running); Republicans currently hold three of those seats, while the Democrats hold one; Sanders' seat is also open.

Sabato estimates that there are eight races which are a tossup; the good news is that those are evenly split between Democratic and Republican incumbents.

As expected, Heather Wilson's seat is listed as competitive, although Sabato does give us encouragement in that Heather's district is estimated to lean Republican (largely on the basis of Wilson's incumbency), although he notes that it voted for Kerry in 2004. His information here seems a little outdated:

Although some Republicans have encouraged a Senate bid by GOP Rep. Heather Wilson, it won't happen in 2006, and Democrats' hopes of winning this Albuquerque-based, Kerry-majority district in 2006 depend entirely on their ability to field a candidate who can match her appeal.

Popular state Attorney General Patricia Madrid would be the top Democratic choice, but at this point it is more likely that the nomination will fall to a state legislator such as state Sen. Jerry Ortiz y Pino if he enters the race. Even if Madrid were to run, Wilson has proven she is no stranger to close races and therefore she remains the favorite.

Of course, Madrid is running and almost certainly going to be the Democratic nominee.
Who Is Lynn Woolsey?

Lynn Woolsey is the Member of Congress who gave Cindy Sheehan a pass to the State of the Union Address last night, leading to the ruckus that resulted in Mother Sheehan spending at least part of the night in the slammer.

Woolsey claimed beforehand that Sheehan had promised to be on her best behavior, but either Cindy or Lynn was lying obviously.

Woolsey is a Democrat (duh!) from Northern California; her district includes all of Marin and part of Sonoma Counties, so she's definitely a white wine and brie kind of liberal. She was "cut and run" on Iraq before Jack Murtha. She's a former welfare mother who got 74.2% of the vote in her last election and has been in the House of Representatives since being elected in 1992, so forget about donating to her Republican opponent this fall.

Her lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union is 4 (100 is a perfect score), which makes her a hair less liberal than Nancy Pelosi, whose career rating is 3.

Michelle Malkin wrote two years ago regarding Woolsey's attempted intervention in a criminal case regarding the sone of one of her aides. What had the young man in question done?

Last July, a 20-year-old thug named Stewart Pearson soaked a rag in toilet bowl cleanser and Ajax and used it to smother 17-year-old Tina Phan while she was sleeping in her Terra Linda, Calif., home. Tina gasped, trying to fend off Pearson, but he wielded a knife and overpowered her. Pearson raped and brutalized her. According to Phan, Pearson told her he had committed the same crime before and planned to do it again. Phan bravely persisted in pressing charges against Pearson. He initially denied raping Phan, but admitted guilt last fall.

Enter Rep. Woolsey. As first reported by the Marin Independent Journal, the outspoken feminist and anti-violence-preaching Democrat attempted to intervene in the case. She used her official stationery to send a letter to the local presiding judge in support of . . . the convicted rapist.

In a bleeding-heart plea for leniency, Woolsey wrote: "Stewart Pearson is a young man from a supportive family. I believe he has a promising life ahead of him, and I urge you to consider these factors when deciding on a suitable sentence." Woolsey noted further that Pearson had volunteered for her campaign, as if stuffing envelopes for Woolsey somehow mitigated the violence he committed against Tina Phan -- whose promising life Woolsey didn't bother to show an ounce of concern for at all.

Here's Woolsey's antiwar website. As you can see, she's pretty far out on the moonbat wing of the Democrats, especially on the issue of Iraq.
Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Cindy Bust Photo Gallery

Your seat's there.

That seat?
No, that seat.

But I don't want that seat!

My Kind of Gun Control

Shown by a rookie female officer who was almost carjacked.

Two of the three suspects were armed, according to Jersey Village Police. One suspect pushed Officer Holly Marie Mong over into the passenger seat.

Authorities said the 22-year-old officer's instincts and training kicked in, even though she'd been with the department less than six months.

"At that time she pulled her weapon and fired several rounds, striking both of the assailants," said Jersey Village Police Chief Charles Wedemeyer.

Authorities said Mong shot and killed one suspect and shot another suspect five times.

Not bad--six out of six!
Blogs for Heather Update

I've been kind of snoozing on the Blogs for Heather thing since it's a full nine months from the election, but Pam Meister's been on the job and has analyzed the campaign platform of Patricia Madrid, Congresswoman Wilson's opponent in the fall.

My post signing onto the Blogs for Heather group is here. Heather Wilson is certainly deserving of your support. She was reelected in 2004 by eight percentage points, which means that the DNC will be targeting her in November as part of their effort to take over the Congress. Retaining her seat is absolutely crucial if we want to maintain control and stave off a House Judiciary Committee headed by John Conyers.

I'm not going to ask you for money now, but I am going to ask you for money later. Those of you who've been around since the Kerry Haters days know that we've been highly effective with your money; we passed the cup around for the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth and for John Thune, two of the biggest winners in 2004.
Snatching Defeat Out of the Jaws of Victory

Dana Milbank, who writes excellent columns like this every now and then, notes that the circular firing squad has formed on the Left:

The new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds congressional Democrats in the best position they've held in 14 years, besting President Bush and Republican lawmakers on Iraq, the economy, health care, immigration, ethics and more.

All of which can mean only one thing: It is time for the Democrats to eat their own.

Right on cue, liberal activists including Cindy Sheehan and Ramsey Clark gathered yesterday at the Busboys & Poets restaurant and bookshop at 14th and V streets NW for what they billed as a forum on "The Impeachment of President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney." But the participants, while charging the administration with "crimes against humanity," a "war of aggression" and even "the supreme international crime," inevitably turned their wrath on congressional Democrats, whom they regarded as a bunch of wimps.

"Does the Democratic Party want to continue to exist or does it want to ignore what 85 percent of its supporters want?" demanded David Swanson, a labor union official who runs "Impeach PAC" and other efforts to remove Bush from office. Singling out Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid (Nev.) for derision, Swanson said that Democrats who do the right thing "are exceptions."

You know how it is, the intra-party fights are always the bloodiest and nastiest. Milbank himself strikes me as a liberal, but of course Cindy Sheehan and the ImpeachPAC crowd are from the whackjob Left, so there's no love lost there.

Another Left versus liberal fight is brewing over Chris Matthews. This time the claim is that Matthews said Teddy Kennedy molested Judge Alito's wife. Of course, the reality is a little more complicated than that:

MATTHEWS: ...won't they say something up beat and (bucking up)... isn't she a great woman, didn't she stand up-and then they'll put the camera right on Ted Kennedy and show how he was the guy that molested her basically-that's the way they'll play it...
Praise for Kos from a Surprising Source

The Ankle-Biting Pundits says Kos' analysis of the flubbluster was correct, and that means problems down the road for the Democrats.
Explaining to Children What Democrats Do

John Hawkins pointed out this delightful fairy tale:

Monday, January 30, 2006
Flight 93--Updated

Got done watching the film. It was terrific, very moving, extremely well-acted. They did a little bit at the beginning where the passengers' boarding passes were being printed out; smart way of identifying the major participants. The emotional overload came about midway through the picture as they sandwiched in most of the known phone conversations--Todd Beamer's with the lady from Verizon, Jeremy Glick's with his wife, Mark Burnett with his wife, even Mark Bingham's with his mother.

I won't say I enjoyed it, despite the obvious quality and reverence of the production but I was gripped by it. It really was as if for a few hours that day was with us again.

Pam Meister says Flight 93 should be required watching for every citizen.

BTW, I missed the first showing of this, but tuned in near the end and caught a related hourlong show (The Man Who Predicted 9-11) on Rick Rescorla, one of the heroes of this blog. Also highly recommended.
Wonkette Becomes Wonkers?

Apparently the two new "editors" are men. But I have a hunch that the fascination with anal sex will continue.
The Latest BS Rumor

(Welcome Freepers!)

This story is starting to get some play in the Lefty blogs:

Last week, Col. Janis Karpinski told a panel of judges at the Commission of Inquiry for Crimes against Humanity Committed by the Bush Administration in New York that several women had died of dehydration because they refused to drink liquids late in the day. They were afraid of being assaulted or even raped by male soldiers if they had to use the women's latrine after dark.

The latrine for female soldiers at Camp Victory wasn't located near their barracks, so they had to go outside if they needed to use the bathroom. "There were no lights near any of their facilities, so women were doubly easy targets in the dark of the night," Karpinski told retired US Army Col. David Hackworth in a September 2004 interview. It was there that male soldiers assaulted and raped women soldiers. So the women took matters into their own hands. They didn't drink in the late afternoon so they wouldn't have to urinate at night. They didn't get raped. But some died of dehydration in the desert heat, Karpinski said.

For example, Maj. Gen. Walter Wojdakowski, Sanchez's top deputy in Iraq, saw "dehydration" listed as the cause of death on the death certificate of a female master sergeant in September 2003. Under orders from Sanchez, he directed that the cause of death no longer be listed, Karpinski stated. The official explanation for this was to protect the women's privacy rights.

My BS detector was pinging like crazy on that one. Fortunately, the Left has been careful to keep a catalog of all soldiers who died, and break it down in quite a bit of detail, including women.

First, and most obviously, no female master sergeants died in September 2003. A female sergeant died in July of 2003, but at least according to the website, she died of a non-hostile weapon discharge. Indeed, looking down the list there are only a few women where the cause of death is not pretty specific; so much for protecting privacy.

So I suspect this whole story is nonsense. Oh, and who is Janis Karpinski?

Karpinski was the highest officer reprimanded for the Abu Ghraib torture scandal, although the details of interrogations were carefully hidden from her. Demoted from Brigadier General to Colonel, Karpinski feels she was chosen as a scapegoat because she was a female.

Chris notes in the comments that she was originally demoted for several charges including shoplifting of cosmetics. She's also made wild charges before, as in this CNN story where she claims that she met an Israeli interrogator in an Iraq prison.
For Our Fellow Kerry Haters

This is one to savor.

In presidential politics, defeat is usually total. Salvaging dignity and honor is no easy task, and by historical standards John Kerry has actually had it pretty good. Better than an instant punch line like Dukakis or Viagra salesman Bob Dole.

But it can’t be fun, either. “He’s gone from being the guy in the bubble entourage of 150 to being one of a hundred senators,” says one former Kerry aide. “That transition is not an easy one, I wouldn’t think.”

A Senate staffer adds, “There is this weird cognitive dissonance. You see Kerry in the Dirksen [Senate Office Building] cafeteria getting a salad, and you think, You were inches from becoming president, and now you’re getting your own salad. And it’s not even a good salad!”

May he have many more mediocre salads!
Memories of Evel Knievel

A buddy of mine put up some remniscences of the most amazing daredevil in history. The main thing that I remember about him is that his jumps were events. Yeah, he racheted it up a bit too much with the shark pool (Knievel jumped the shark before the Fonz) and the ridiculous Snake River Canyon attempt. But he's always been a patriot, always reverent, and always a good role model for kids.
Cloture Passes

The flubbluster goes down 72-25. No word yet from Cenk Uygur.

Crazy Politico points out in the comments that the bloodletting has begun.

Lieberman is apparently getting a challenger and Kos endorses that effort. That should be enough to get Joe a fourth term.
Another Blogger Radio Show

Congrats to Lores Rizkalla, host of the blog Just a Woman, who will be getting a slot on KRLA (the home station of Hugh Hewitt and Dennis Prager). She's conservative (the pics of Condi, Peggy Noonan and Maggie Thatcher are a dead giveaway) and a good writer. The only problem is that she doesn't exactly have a radio face (that is, she's good-looking enough to be on TV).

Congrats to Lores! If you live in the LA area, give her show a listen. If you don't live there, you can listen live on the web.
What Taranto Says

He covers the flubbluster and John Kerry's pandering to the moonbats:

Somehow it doesn't seem right that Obama, the only African-American in the Senate, is being pressured into going along with a tactic that earlier generations of Democrats used to prevent the passage of civil rights laws.

Conveniently enough for Kerry, the cloture vote is perfectly timed to divert attention from today's first anniversary of his promise to release his military records. But what's really going on is that he is trying to establish his Angry Left bona fides in preparation for what he mistakenly thinks will be another presidential campaign in 2008. The Washington Post notes that the Democrats face "an intraparty rift that could complicate efforts to win back the White House: fiery liberals raising their voices on Web sites and in interest groups vs. elected officials trying to appeal to a much broader audience."

Exactly. As I have said before, there are three slots available for Democratic presidential contenders: The Hillary Slot (reserved), the Electable Slot (probably Mark Warner of Virginia), and the Moonbat Slot (Feingold had an early lead here, but Gore and Kerry are making moves to endear them to this crowd).

While we're on the subject of Kerry's one-year anniversary....
Lefty Bloggers Getting Resentful

John Aravosis articulates it well here (caution; don't browse around that site--it's really quite vile):

Now, I couldn't give a damn if someone criticizes me or us or you. That's not the point. The problem is that the right, and many inside the Democratic party, are hell-bent on portraying the Netroots as a bunch of far-left kooks. They want to make YOU the third rail of politics. Crazy people who shouldn't be listened to. This kind of a campaign, where the Netroots forces the Democratic party into fighting a battle it isn't prepared to fight, only helps convince the party, the media, and the rest of America that working with us, listening to us, is dangerous. And that doesn't help us accomplish our agenda one bit. Again, it's not about winning a popularity contest, it's about our voices and our concerns being taken seriously. I think this effort undercuts that.

Oddly enough, Aravosis writes this in an article that disagrees with the "netroots"; he comes out against the filibuster, or really the flubbluster that the lefty blogs are all pushing.

Meanwhile, Katrina Vanden Heuvel finds out that it's easy to ride the tiger; the hard part is getting off. She suggests that the liberal blogs have chosen the wrong fight in attacking the Democrats' choice of moderate Tim Kaine instead of firebreathing John Murtha to give the rebuttal to the State of the Union.

Liberal writer Ezra Klein (no Brad Pitt, last time I checked him out) vented that Kaine is "a squat, squinty, pug-nosed fellow." Even the invariably smart and strategic Arianna (Huffington) weighed in: "What the hell are they thinking?" She accused Democrats of picking "someone whose only claim to fame is that he carried a red state" when they need to make the case that "the GOP is not the party that can best keep us safe."

Well, you can imagine what happens next. Katrina Vanden Heuvel joins Tim Russert, Chris Matthews and Katie Couric in the liberal bloggers' doghouse.

Hat Tip: Memeorandum

As Instapundit points out, when even Joan Vennochi thinks you're going too far in catering to your base, you're probably close to sailing off the edge of the world.
Flight 93 Movie Tonight

John Miller reviews it in NRO:

As soon as the passengers resolved to fight back, however, the movie gained a second wind. When the terrorists weren't looking, the Americans filled coffee pots with scalding water and armed themselves with unopened cans of pop (those things must hurt if they bean people in the head). One of them grabbed a fire extinguisher. Another carried a seat cushion like a shield. They turned a beverage cart into a battering ram. My wife commented that they were like little boys who dressed up as knights and used their imaginations to turn mundane objects into weapons of war.

And like knights on white horses, they wound up saving the day, or at least a portion of it. They delivered us from even more evil.

Sounds worth watching! On A&E; check your local listings.

Update: For the contrary viewpoint check here.

Racing to the air with movies based on news events is nothing new, but one might have thought the magnitude and enormity of 9/11 would have made it somehow sacrosanct, untouchable, not to be defiled by the polished ploys and slick gimmicks of professional writers, directors, producers and actors.

But of course all major events eventually become part of pop culture; Pearl Harbor and D-Day, two similar events with major repercussions, have been dramatized many times.
Sunday, January 29, 2006
Putting the Weak In Newsweak

Sheesh, this article isn't too slanted against the Bush Administration, is it?

You have two sides in an argument, a legitimate argument, as Newsweek acknowledges, but you portray one side this way:

They had no idea. Goldsmith was actually the opposite of what his detractors imagined. For nine months, from October 2003 to June 2004, he had been the central figure in a secret but intense rebellion of a small coterie of Bush administration lawyers. Their insurrection, described to NEWSWEEK by current and former administration officials who did not wish to be identified discussing confidential deliberations, is one of the most significant and intriguing untold stories of the war on terror.

These Justice Department lawyers, backed by their intrepid boss Comey, had stood up to the hard-liners, centered in the office of the vice president, who wanted to give the president virtually unlimited powers in the war on terror. Demanding that the White House stop using what they saw as farfetched rationales for riding rough-shod over the law and the Constitution, Goldsmith and the others fought to bring government spying and interrogation methods within the law. They did so at their peril; ostracized, some were denied promotions, while others left for more comfortable climes in private law firms and academia. Some went so far as to line up private lawyers in 2004, anticipating that the president's eavesdropping program would draw scrutiny from Congress, if not prosecutors. These government attorneys did not always succeed, but their efforts went a long way toward vindicating the principle of a nation of laws and not men.

Is it hard to figure out which side Newsweak is on in this story? Just read on:

Their story has been obscured behind legalisms and the veil of secrecy over the White House. But it is a quietly dramatic profile in courage.

Now they're evoking JFK with the story!

To some, the notion that there was an argument within the administration proves that our rights have been trampled. But the sources for this story admit that it's a close call between doing too much and not doing enough:

They did not see the struggle in terms of black and white but in shades of gray—as painfully close calls with unavoidable pitfalls. They worried deeply about whether their principles might put Americans at home and abroad at risk.
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