May 2005


In Darfur, the Shariah-inspired jihadi government responds to criticism by arresting the Messenger. Atlas Shrugs has more.

In Yemen, their Shariah-inspired jihadi government calls their critic, Jane Novak of Armies of Liberation, a docile pupil of a monkey monk – and a non-tummyist.

Why does our government call these al Qaeda-trained ‘tards our allies in the war against terror? We’re certainly not dazzled by their rapier-sharp wit. Their military forces could be defeated by a Belgian girl-scout troop.

Are we doing it all for the sake of their rapidly dwindling oil supplies? It’s hardly worth it.

June is learn to fly month, for good reason. With blue skies and puffy white clouds, the weather is perfect.

Today I was baggage, sitting in the backseat of a Cessna 172 during my son’s introduction to flying course. He was a natural, according to the instructor, and he seems to enjoy it as much as he enjoys driving. Hopefully, he’ll continue to avoid the urge to race or find his pace car (or plane?)

His first-time landing was made amidst many jets. I was wondering why our small northern NJ airport was so busy on a Tuesday morning. The reason was – another accident at Teterboro Airport. What is going on over there?

Anyway, the flight was so much fun, I think I’ll try to revive my dormant pilot’s license, update my eyeglass presecription and study up for my long-delayed biannual. It’s that time of the year.

The city of Eugene Oregon is considering banning sex segregated bathrooms, because they are a form of discrimination based on “gender identity.”

bob at Breakdown Lane says “Next thing you know they’ll be handing out citations for leaving the lid up.”

They’ve already done worse in Germany.

for the average American omnipotent hyperpower God..

..a God’s eye view of the world..

[link thanks to Judith Weiss]

More well-planned heartfelt expressions of Islamist rage occured after yesterday’s Friday sermons.

english

These English language signs crack me up. Islamists can always depend on the Western Press for their PR work.

Iraqis protesting terror aren’t so lucky.

These Pakistani signs are convincingly hand-lettered. I know they can do a better job than that.

Hmm..did they read this?

These outraged zealots sure know how to study a market.

A lake in Russia disappeared:

“I’ve never seen anything like it. Never,” said Dmitry Zaytsev, an officer with the federal Emergency Situations Ministry sent to investigate the case.

“Pretty much all the water went down that hole, and that’s it,” he said. “Everything — fish, water, everything — got sucked into that hole. And judging by the size of the crater, it must have happened pretty quickly, in a matter of a few hours.”

Government officials theorize that a shift in soils underneath the lake opened access to an underground channel that drained the water, estimated from several thousand to more than a million cubic yards, into a subterranean cavern. From there, it may have flowed into the Oka River a few miles away.

“It’s pretty scary to even be here. You have to understand, it was like there was a pump somewhere underground. A gaping sinkhole emerged, and everything was flushed down like a toilet,” said another Emergency Situations Ministry investigator, Vladimir Gryasnov. “If anyone had been near the thing when it happened, they would have had no chance of surviving.”

The channel-to-the-river theory has gained credence during the last week, as several fishermen along the Oka reported catching 35-pound carp. The species has been found in the lake but not the river. At least, not in ordinary times.
But, of course, these are not ordinary times; not when White Lake is there one day and gone the next.

With an eerie, almost Elmer Fudd-like precision, the UN, their related NGOs and Democrats like Howard Dean and George Soros have been hunting Wepublicans for years.

Like Fudd, they believe that their prey is stupid. They believe they have the superior intellectual firepower, but these Fudds always go home empty handed. Why?

Maybe their concentration is off. Be vewy, vewy quiet.

The hyperbolic, cartoonish intensity of their frustrated efforts to bag the big Wepublicans was exemplified by Howard Deans’ cartoonish Yeeargghhh! But that Fuddy bleat of despair is now surpassed by this pathetic effort from Amnesty International. This bold yet peacefully ineffective defender of Human Rights worldwide has just published an official Annual Report that is, literally, a cartoonish expression of rage.

(Amnesty’s cartoon is thanks to someone named Morin, who is no Tex Avery)

In their Cartoon report, the Secretary General of Amnesty International, Irene Khan, had a Yeeaarggh! moment when she called Guantanamo “the gulag of our times”

Michael Totten discusses Khan’s harebrained comparison:

I have read some of the work of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. And I once (briefly) met a man who survived both a Nazi concentration camp and one of Stalin’s slave labor camps in Siberia. It would be a bit much to say I “know” the gulag, but I do have a bit of a clue about what went on there. It was no Guantanamo, as anyone who has ever bothered to study the subject well knows. For one thing, if Guantanamo were the new gulag, Irene Khan would be languishing in it herself right about now – and so would her family.

But she isn’t, she never will be, and she knows it. What she doesn’t know is the gulag.

I once said of Senator James (more outraged by the outrage) Inhofe of Oklahoma that “it takes a special kind of person, really it does, to think anger at torture is worse than torture.” All Irene Khan is doing here is encouraging the Inhofes of the world by crying “wolf” instead of properly crying foul. It is, as a certain Secretary of Defense would put it, not helpful.

Anyway, the gulag of our times is in North Korea.

Ms. Khan also adds some more broad strokes by saying “The USA, as the unrivalled political, military and economic hyper-power, sets the tone for governmental behaviour worldwide.”

In Amnesty’s universe, Americans are omnipotent, hyperpower Gods. All intermational peons must bend to our will.

So, if we’re responsible for everything bad that happens, we must be responsible for all the good things too, like the Independence of Lebanon, India’s economic boom, the improving Chinese economy and the Canadian government’s recent entertaining antics.

If we were responsible. But, since this is the real world, we’re not.

When hysteria-prone Fudds like Dean are threatened, they fly into bigger and better hysterics. Since the 2004 elections, their anti-Bush hysteria has been turned to 11. The screamers at Amnesty have just turned the loony tunes up to 12.

From William Schulz, Amnesty’s Executive Director:

At the launch of its 2005 Annual Report, Amnesty International called on foreign governments to uphold their obligations under international law by investigating U.S. officials implicated in the development or implementation of interrogation techniques that constitute torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment. While the U.S. government has failed to conduct a genuinely independent and comprehensive investigation, the officials implicated in these crimes are nonetheless subject to investigation and possible arrest by other nations while traveling abroad, the organization said.

The human rights organization warned that at least one dozen former or current U.S. officials are vulnerable to this action. The individuals, who, to date, have either dodged investigation or escaped sanction, include those at the highest levels of government, such as President Bush and Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, as well as Attorney General Gonzales and former CIA Director George Tenet.

This is the same William Schulz who, in this Salon interview, clearly described the enemy that Amnesty is fighting – American hyperpower:

Q: Why did the Bush administration ultimately carry out its Iraq policy the way it did? Do you subscribe to any of the more cynical views commonly voiced by the left, for example that the war was simply a big oil grab?

Schultz: I think it reflects a rather wholesale disregard for international institutions, for a multilateral framework in which to conduct U.S. foreign policy. I don’t think it’s only about oil. That may be part of it, but fundamentally it’s about American power. The United States has articulated in the National Defense Strategy – with its precursor being the Project for a New American Century – the desire to make sure American military power is preeminent, and will stay that way 100, 200 and 500 years from now. That will be accomplished by asserting American unilateral military power – and economic power, though the two in some measure go hand in hand — wherever it’s needed around the globe

Simply put, international institutions like Amnesty want to control the actions of the American military. They are at odds with Americans, most of whom believe that we should control our own defense forces.

In his Salon interview, Schulz ignored the enemy that Amnesty is NOT fighting – oppression, slavery and human rights violations around the world.

He’s still ignoring them. Did Mr. Schulz threaten the genocidal President Omar Hassan A. Al-Bashier
of the Sudan with arrest? Did he mock Bashier with a cartoon? Of course not. He doesn’t care about Bashier. President Bashir doesn’t threaten Schulz’s power.

Fear of American hyperpower and fear of their own loss of power motivates Amnesty’s bumbling efforts to hunt Wepublicans. It also motivates their lack of equivalent concern for every other human rights issue around the globe. In their worldview, I suppose this makes sense. If Wepublicans are omnipotent Gods who control every earth-event, hunting them is the only reasonable course of action.

In Amnesty’s cartoon universe, their motivation is clear. I understand that, but what I don’t understand is – why should anyone pay for their obsessive loony-tunes hunt?

There’s something screwy going on around here.

[cross-posted at Dean's World]

Toast with beans or Marmite* – I never understood the appeal of this British breakfast staple, but according to the New Scientist, it can make you smarter:

..According to research published in 2003, kids breakfasting on fizzy drinks and sugary snacks performed at the level of an average 70-year-old in tests of memory and attention. Beans on toast is a far better combination, as Barbara Stewart from the University of Ulster, UK, discovered. Toast alone boosted children’s scores on a variety of cognitive tests, but when the tests got tougher, the breakfast with the high-protein beans worked best. Beans are also a good source of fibre, and other research has shown a link between a high-fibre diet and improved cognition. If you can’t stomach beans before midday, wholemeal toast with Marmite makes a great alternative. The yeast extract is packed with B vitamins, whose brain-boosting powers have been demonstrated in many studies.

Just stay away from the sausage.

More of the steps to a better brain…

* if you have to ask what Marmite is, you don’t want to know

In March, 2004, Carl Bernstein, who, with Bob Woodward, exposed the Watergate scandal (and who may or may not be responsible for creating the mess we now call the media)
lamented the “triumph of idiot culture”.

[Bernstein] said much of today’s news has deteriorated into gossip, sensationalism and manufactured controversy.
That type of news panders to the public and insults their intelligence, ignoring the context of real life, he said. Good journalism, Bernstein said, “should challenge people, not just mindlessly amuse them.”

He said the modern press lacks true leadership, citing such examples as AOL Time Warner and mogul Rupert Murdoch as media owners that have increasingly abandoned the principles of meaningful reporting.

“Their interest in truth is secondary to their interest in huge profits,” Bernstein said.

Still, he said people can change that trend by exploring the Internet and piecing together from reputable sources their own news about important world matters.

Of course, Bernstein’s criticism never made it to the front pages of Newsweek and the New York Times. Despite that, intelligent Americans, including Nascar Huns and the residents of Jesusland have been abandoning the mass media in droves.

According to John Podhoretz, the media is seeing the financial effects of this critical mass:

There are compelling individual explanations for these phenomena. For instance, this year’s movies have been extraordinarily uninteresting. And the collapse in newspaper circulation may simply be the result of more honest reporting on the part of publishers chastened by the public exposure last year of fraudulent numbers at papers like Newsday and the Dallas Morning News. But it can’t be a coincidence that the five major pillars of the American media — movies, television, radio, recorded music and newspapers — are all suffering at the same time. And it isn’t. Something major has changed over the past year, as the availability of alternative sources of information and entertainment has finally reached critical mass.

Newly empowered consumers are letting the producers, creators and managers of the nation’s creative and news content know that they are dissatisfied with the product they’re being peddled.

Podhoretz’s observations also never made it to the pages of Newsweek and the New York Times.

In a discussion on the left-leaning Pandagon about the Left’s support of religion, I quoted this from Dutch MP Ayaan Hirsi Ali, explaining why she broke with the Left:

Because the left is exactly like the Muslims! I wanted to give priority to the defense of immigrant women who are victims of domestic violence. They said to me: “No, that’s not a priority! The problem will take care of itself when the immigrants have jobs and are integrated.” It is exactly what the Imams say who demand that we accept oppression and slavery today because tomorrow, in Heaven, God will give us dates and raisins … . I think we need first to defend the individual. The left is afraid of everything. But fear of giving offense leads to injustice and suffering. The sexual revolution, the affirmation of individual rights, improving the living conditions of immigrants – these were once the great causes of the Dutch left. In their eyes, the simple fact of belong to a minority gives one the right to do anything. This multiculturalism is a disaster. All one has to do is scream “discrimination” and all doors are open to you! Scream ‘racism’ and your opponents shut up! But multiculturalism is an inconsistent theory. If one wants to let communities preserve their traditions, what happens when these traditions work to the detriment of women or homosexuals? The logic of multiculturalism amounts to accepting the subordination of women. Nonetheless, the defenders of multiculturalism do not want to admit it.

Somebody asked me which side of “the argument” I was on. I said, “the side that’s opposed to fascism, Islamist or otherwise.”

Being opposed to fascism isn’t a left/right thing. Anti-fascists include the anarchist Lefties of the East German Antifa. They’re socialists like Norm Geras and the bloggers at Harry’s Place. They’re Democrats like Jeff Jarvis and Liberals like Michael Totten, Dean Esmay and Hirsi Ali. They’re conservatives like Joel Mowbray and Bat Ye’or. They’re the independents like Roger Simon and Judith Weiss.

Anyway, when I said I was anti-fascist, another commenter at Pandagon called me a Right wingnut. Another said that Hirsi Ali was “off her rails”. Then they ranted about imperialism and racism. Sigh.

[Cross-posted on Dean's World]

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