Give 'em Enough Rope
I like what Mark Steyn has to say about the House's recent passage of a Constitutional Amendment that would prohibit the desecration of the American flag:
For my own part, I believe that, if someone wishes to burn a flag, he should be free to do so. In the same way, if Democrat senators want to make speeches comparing the U.S. military to Nazis and the Khmer Rouge, they should be free to do so. It's always useful to know what people really believe.
And that's the thing: if you hate this country so much that you would burn her most precious symbol, go ahead. Show us your ass.
Then again, I think the individual states should statutorily set the maximum penalty for assault on one of these flag-burners at the payment of a one dollar fine.
Steyn also reminds us of the Leftist martyr to the Car Swarm People, Rachel Corrie, and the notorious photograph of her burning an American flag. Corrie was accidentally crushed to death a few years ago in Gaza when she got in the way of an Israeli bulldozer.
[...]her family and friends worked assiduously to promote the image of her as a youthful idealist passionately moved by despair and injustice. ''My Name Is Rachel Corrie,'' a play about her, was a huge hit in London. Well, OK, it wasn't so much a play as a piece of sentimental agitprop so in thrall to its subject's golden innocence that the picture of Rachel on the cover of the Playbill shows her playing in the backyard, age 7 or so, wind in her hair, in a cute, pink T-shirt.
There's another photograph of Rachel Corrie: at a Palestinian protest, headscarved, her face contorted with hate and rage, torching the Stars and Stripes. Which is the real Rachel Corrie? The "schoolgirl idealist" caught up in the cycle of violence? Or the grown woman burning the flag of her own country? Well, that's your call. But because that second photograph exists, we at least have a choice.
Have you seen that Rachel Corrie flag-burning photo? If you follow Charles Johnson's invaluable Little Green Footballs Web site and a few other Internet outposts, you will have. But you'll look for it in vain in the innumerable cooing profiles of the "passionate activist" that have appeared in the world's newspapers.
We don't need to ban flag-burning. We just need to give these people enough rope.
There Goes the Neighborhood Mood:
Courtesy of Charles Johnson, here is a fascinating report on al-Jazeera's latest doings:
The Arab TV news network criticized by the new Iraqi government and others for its anti-American bias and willingness to carry the messages of terrorist organizations, including al-Qaida, is headed for the U.S.-Mexico border to document how easy it is to enter America illegally.
Al-Jazeera has contacted Minuteman Civil Defense Corps leader Chris Simcox to try to arrange interviews. Simcox, who rejected the request for cooperation with the TV network, says al-Jazeera, seen by millions throughout the Arab world and elsewhere, is producing an hour-long documentary news special on lack of security at the U.S. southern border.
That's pretty mindblowing, isn't it? Somehow, it's even worse than the Mexican government producing pamphlets and DVDs for the edification of its own citizens who wish to illegally enter our country.
But here's my favorite bit:
Simcox has contacted the offices of Arizona's two Republican U.S. senators – John McCain and Jon Kyl – to invite them to do interviews with al Jazeera, "so perhaps they can explain to the viewers of this news outlet just how secure America's borders really are."
Posted by Toby Petzold
at 12:20 PM CDT
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Updated: Sunday, 26 June 2005 1:55 PM CDT
Saturday, 25 June 2005
Byron York does a great job of proving Karl Rove's recent charges against liberals in this country.
The [outrage] that people like Schumer and Pelosi have manufactured is crap. They associated themselves closely with organizations like MoveOn.org in this past election cycle ---and now, again--- they get to enjoy it.
After Rove's comments, MoveOn released a statement saying flatly, "MoveOn did not oppose the U.S. military action in Afghanistan." And in an interview with the Washington Post, reporter Dan Balz wrote that MoveOn political chief Eli Pariser "disputed Rove's characterization of the petition calling for moderation and restraint, saying that the petition was a personal project before he was affiliated with MoveOn and that it was not on the group's Web site at the time of the Afghanistan war."
Despite Pariser's contention, there is solid evidence that MoveOn did in fact oppose the war in Afghanistan, and that MoveOn founders Joan Blades and Wes Boyd hired Pariser in significant part because of his activism against the war.
Please drop by the Power Line and read this letter to the Minneapolis Star Tribune from Lt. Peter Hegseth, a recently returned veteran of our facilities at Guantanamo Bay. Here's an excerpt:
Not only are the detainees treated humanely (top-notch medical care, hearty meals, recreational facilities, full access to religious observance, etc..) but I personally witnessed instances when detainees did not want to leave. It was not uncommon for my platoon to guard an airfield for hours in preparation for sending a detainee home, only to turn around and bring him back to the detention facility – because he refused to leave! These detainees are not stupid—they know that real torture and inhumane treatment await them at home. And while I know they’re not happy to be in GTMO, they rest assured that they will be treated well because Americans play by the rules.
Guess whose story I buy: an American soldier's or that of Islamofascists who instruct these people to claim abuse as a propaganda ploy.
The Enemies of Our Enemies Are Still Just a Bunch of Murderous Submitters Mood:
I haven't heard much about this, but it's nice to know that the native psychopaths in Iraq don't like the tourist kind. From Karabila:
Marines patrolling this desert region near the Syrian border have for months been seeing a strange new trend in the already complex Iraqi insurgency. Insurgents, they say, have been fighting each other in towns along the Euphrates from Husayba, on the border, to Qaim, farther west. The observations offer a new clue in the hidden world of the insurgency and suggest that there may have been, as American commanders suggest, a split between Islamic militants and local rebels.
A United Nations official who served in Iraq last year and who consulted widely with militant groups said in a telephone interview that there has been a split for some time.
"There is a rift," said the official, who requested anonymity, citing the sensitivity of the talks he had held. "I'm certain that the nationalist Iraqi part of the insurgency is very much fed up with the Jihadists grabbing the headlines and carrying out the sort of violence that they don't want against innocent civilians."
This would be a good time to put the word out that the "nationalist part of the insurgency" may expect an amnesty ---and the Syrians and Saudis and Iranians and whoever else is there murdering people without reason can expect annihilation.
Get them working against each other like the wretched gangsters they are.
"I Likes 'em Dumb. Real Dumb." Mood:
suave Now Playing: "Back Door Man" by the Doors
Although I haven't done any independent research on this since the Late Pleistocene Era, it's still very good to know:
New research indicates parts of the brain that govern fear and anxiety are switched off when a woman is having an orgasm but remain active if she is faking.
In the first study to map brain function during orgasm, scientists from the Netherlands also found that as a woman climaxes, an area of the brain governing emotional control is largely deactivated.
"During orgasm, there was strong, enormous deactivation in the brain. During fake orgasm, there was no deactivation of the brain at all. None," [neuroscientist Gert] Holstege said.
The Shoulders of Monsters
Here's a great column by Mark Gelernter on the importance of knowing one's history.
Ignorance of history destroys our judgment. Consider Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill), who just compared the Guantanamo Bay detention center to Stalin's gulag and to the death camps of Hitler and Pol Pot — an astonishing, obscene piece of ignorance. Between 15 million and 30 million people died from 1918 through 1956 in the prisons and labor camps of the Soviet gulag. Historian Robert Conquest gives some facts. A prisoner at the Kholodnaya Gora prison had to stuff his ears with bread before sleeping on account of the shrieks of women being interrogated. At the Kolyma in Siberia, inmates labored through 12-hour days in cheap canvas shoes, on almost no food, in temperatures that could go to minus-58. At one camp, 1,300 of 3,000 inmates died in one year.
And how many of these rats who commit mass murder in the name of Allah have died at Gitmo?
There is an ongoing culture war between Americans who are ashamed of this nation's history and those who acknowledge with sorrow its many sins and are fiercely proud of it anyway. Proud of the 17th century settlers who threw their entire lives overboard and set sail for religious freedom in their rickety little ships. Proud of the new nation that taught democracy to the world. Proud of its ferocious fight to free the slaves, save the Union and drag (lug, shove, sweat, bleed) America a few inches closer to its own sublime ideals. Proud of its victories in two world wars and the Cold War, proud of the fight it is waging this very day for freedom in Iraq and the whole Middle East.
If you are proud of this country and don't want its identity to vanish, you must teach U.S. history to your children. They won't learn it in school. This nation's memory will go blank unless you act.
And it is this historical amnesia or ---maybe at least as bad--- this historical perversion among the Left today that is so difficult to counter. These people literally do not know what they're talking about when they insist that we aren't being true to our Founding Fathers and our highest principles when we wage war for Iraq. Nonsense. We have sacrificed mightily for the advancement of democratic values all over the world. And our own Civil War? It consisted of one half of the nation destroying the other half so that the whole union might be preserved for the sake of all its inhabitants.
We've been here before, people. I'm writing to you from the heart of "occupied territory." I'm writing to you in the wake of generations of slaveholders, sharecroppers, immigrants, and lawbreakers. If we stand on the shoulders of giants, we also stand on the shoulders of monsters. I won't deny it. I won't bury it and walk away from it. Grow up and recognize what's been lost and won on your behalf, whether you appreciate it or want it or know what to do with it but piss and moan.
Posted by Toby Petzold
at 5:13 PM CDT
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Updated: Sunday, 19 June 2005 6:51 PM CDT
Impeach My Ass
Right now, I'm watching C-SPAN's replay of this past week's little hearing on the Downing Street Minutes. All the usual suspects are there, standing up for truth, justice, and the American Way.
But are any of them aware that regime change in Iraq was ---until it finally came to fruition--- the official policy of the Government of the United States? Did any of these people complain that Bill Clinton had signed off on a terrible policy? No. They all supported it because they knew that President Clinton calling for regime change was worth about as much as your basic United Nations resolution.
But there were other kinds of Americans who supported regime change in Iraq and meant it.
And, so, too bad for these ninnies and malcontents that the Chimperor came along and forced them to take sides and stand for something at long last.
So Bush had a plan to invade Iraq all along and thought he could use terrorism and WMD as an excuse? Okay. The reality behind his pretexts is a lot closer to objective truth than those used by LBJ in the Gulf of Tonkin or McKinley in Havana Harbor.
And we haven't even seen the full return on our men and women's sacrifices there. They are paying a terrible price for our sake and for the sake of that region. I don't forget that. Nor should you.
The Meaningless Crap Act of 2005
I know my colleagues join with me in standing for good things and against ----and this is important now--- against all bad things. I congratulate everyone involved for their great courage in passing this measure.
Is This the Same Man Who Ruined the Buffet at the Harrow Club This Morning? Now Playing: "Low Spark of High-Heeled Boys" by Traffic
With a tip of the hat to Jeff Goldstein, here's a link to a "sketch" by the Washington Post's Dana Milbank. No, really. Dana Milbank:
In the Capitol basement yesterday, long-suffering House Democrats took a trip to the land of make-believe.
They pretended a small conference room was the Judiciary Committee hearing room, draping white linens over folding tables to make them look like witness tables and bringing in cardboard name tags and extra flags to make the whole thing look official.
Rep. John Conyers Jr. [...] and other Democrats held a mock Judiciary Committee hearing as a protest against the war in Iraq.
Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.) banged a large wooden gavel and got the other lawmakers to call him "Mr. Chairman." He liked that so much that he started calling himself "the chairman" and spouted other chairmanly phrases, such as "unanimous consent" and "without objection so ordered." The dress-up game looked realistic enough on C-SPAN, so two dozen more Democrats came downstairs to play along.
The session was a mock impeachment inquiry over the Iraq war. As luck would have it, all four of the witnesses agreed that President Bush lied to the nation and was guilty of high crimes -- and that a British memo on "fixed" intelligence that surfaced last month was the smoking gun equivalent to the Watergate tapes. Conyers was having so much fun that he ignored aides' entreaties to end the session.
(Is this a good enough source for you, Mr. Zappone?)
Say, Dick, Have a Big Cup of Ain't-Goin'-Away Now Playing: "Cirrus Minor" by the Pink Floyd
Looks like US Senator Dick Durbin finally went ahead and stepped in it with the perfidious Jews:
The Anti-Defamation League blasted Illinois Democrat Dick Durbin on Thursday, demanding that he apologize for comparing U.S. troops at Guantanamo Bay to "Nazis."
"Whatever your views on the treatment of detainees and alleged excesses at the Guantanamo Bay facility, it is inappropriate and insensitive to suggest that actions by American troops in any way resemble actions taken by Nazis in their treatment of prisoners," ADL chief Abraham Foxman wrote in a letter addressed to Durbin.
"Suggesting some kind of equivalence between their interrogation tactics demonstrates a profound lack of understanding about the horrors that Hitler and his regime actually perpetrated," Foxman added. "We urge you to repudiate your remarks and apologize to the American people for distorting an important issue with an inappropriate comparison to Nazi tactics," the ADL chief said.
Who's the winner in all of this? That's right: Howard Dean.
I wonder when the Austin American-Statesman will publish quality work like this. I can only take so much of the huge-assed elephant men and the yellow dog Democratic crap that Ben Sargent cranks out.
Posted by Toby Petzold
at 9:20 PM CDT
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Updated: Friday, 17 June 2005 9:22 PM CDT
Something I Said to Charlie Kelly Now Playing: "Oh Death" by Charlie Patton, King of the Delta Blues
Over at Steve Soto's place, a man named Charlie Kelly provided me a link to a webpage featuring his honorable discharge from the United States Army, circa 1972. This link was attached to an invitation to kiss his tattooed ass, which, of course, must be declined in these days of the hepatitis. But I did write him the following:
I thank you for serving our country, Charlie.
But your idea that no one who hasn't served can make a moral case for war is wrong. I advocate interplanetary space exploration, even though I will never take the risks that astronauts do. I advocate unfettered stem cell research, even though I do not have the knowledge or skills to perform it. I can say that a musician sucks, even though I don't play an instrument. I support a woman's reproductive rights, even though I can never exercise them myself.
This is a civil society. One that you defended as a young man and, I am sure, still defend today. But it is for that reason that we do not bar the opinions or resist the actions of those we disagree with or whom we are demonstrably better experienced than.
The only demand that may be placed upon me as I advocate this War for Iraq is that I be knowledgeable about and sensitive to what is being done in my behalf. I believe I meet that standard and I do not take lightly what is required of those who fight for us.
Kudos to News 8 Austin
The poor things have been airing this mild atrocity for at least an hour and a half now ---and without any interruption. It's been amazing. A huge goldmine of negative examples from Austin's Latino and black communities for me to plow back into and be sickened by again.
And it breaks my heart, frankly. I'm always looking to be harmonious in the places where I live. Which is why I make this my catharsis.
Why don't these people have any sense of decorum or dignity? What scrapings. What residue.
Keep one eye on the prize and the other on the TV camera. Assholes.