Saturday, January 30, 2010

Andrew Klavan Helps Us Spot the Difference Between Liberal Fantasies and Reality

The latest installment of Klavan on Culture is up at PJTV.  Go watch.
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Can Superbowl XLIV Be Resolved Peacefully?

High hopes for a diplomaitc solution to who will win this year's Superbowl will likely come to nought if past history is any guide. Will we ever learn?
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Peggy Noonan Distills the President's SOTU Message Down From Seventy Minutes to Two

Peggy Noonan accurately captures the essence of President Obama's State of the Union Address:

The central fact of the speech was the contradiction at its heart. It repeatedly asserted that Washington is the answer to everything. At the same time it painted a picture of Washington as a sick and broken place. It was a speech that argued against itself: You need us to heal you. Don't trust us, we think of no one but ourselves.

The people are good but need guidance—from Washington. The middle class is anxious, and its fears can be soothed—by Washington. Washington can "make sure consumers . . . have the information they need to make financial decisions." Washington must "make investments," "create" jobs, increase "production" and "efficiency."

At the same time Washington is a place "where every day is Election Day," where all is a "perpetual campaign" and the great sport is to "embarrass your opponents" and lob "schoolyard taunts."

Why would anyone have faith in that thing to help anyone do anything?

Exactly. Washington, Washington, Washington. It's the Democrat's all-purpose answer for everything.

Read the whole thing. It's a two minute read. Much better than listening to a seventy minute speech.
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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Obama: A Real-Life Version of Saruman?

Lately I have been picking up on a common theme in the blogosphere. Roger L . Simon for one has posed a pop-quiz question; “Can anyone think of anything memorable Obama said in one of his speeches other than hope, change, etc.?” I’ve seen a few other mentions of people who have heard his speeches being unable to remember any particular quotes from them but do remember that they thought they liked them at the time. As James Taranto quipped in the lead paragraph of today’s Best of the Web Today at the Wall Street Journal, “President Obama is to deliver his first official State of the Union Address tonight, though he has previously given two speeches to joint sessions of Congress, the one nobody remembers and the one during which a rude man shouted, "You lie!" .“ There have been a few other examples of others making similar observations in the last week or so, just none that I can find right now. Like Obama’s words, they soon fade from memory.

I thought all this seemed familiar to me, listening to him speak and watching how people reacted to his voice. It took a while but then I remembered why. Obama has the same ability as Saruman, the supposedly good wizard gone very, very bad in Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy to lull the weak-minded with his voice. In the second book, The Two Towers, we find this description of Saruman’s voice on page 183:

…..Suddenly, another voice spoke, low and melodious, its very sound an enchantment. Those who listened unwarily to that voice could seldom report the words that they heard; and if they did, they wondered, for little power remained in them. Mostly they remembered only that it was a delight to hear the voice speaking, all that it said seemed wise and reasonable, and desire awoke in them by swift agreement to seem wise themselves. When others spoke, they seemed harsh and uncouth by contrast; and if they gainsaid the voice, anger was kindled in the hearts of those under the spell. For some the spell only lasted while the voice spoke to them, and when it spoke to another they smiled, as men do who see through a juggler’s trick while others gape at it. For many the sound of the voice alone was enough to hold them enthralled; but for those whom it conquered the spell endured when they were far away, and ever they heard that soft voice whispering and urging them. But none were unmoved; none rejected its pleas and its commands without an effort of mind and will, so long as its master had control of it.

Personally, I have never been able to stand listening to President Obama at all. His voice grates on me and I find myself wanting to yell at the TV, which annoys the dog so I refrain, but the Saruman description is the first thing I think about whenever I do hear it. In the end, Saruman’s voice lost its ability to beguile when Gandalf provoked him into losing his temper, something else Obama seems to be having trouble controlling lately, thereby exposing his true nature. The spell was broken forever.

Obama’s sole talent as an orator is the ability to read a teleprompter. It is his crutch and when his crutch is taken away, he is every bit as inarticulate as George W. Bush was um, ah, um, derided for being. When he does have the teleprompter, it looks like he’s watching a tennis match with his head swiveling back and forth between screens. It’s very distracting after a while.

I can’t decide whether or not to watch the STFU SOTU (h/t Chris Muir) Address tonight. I will probably follow Stephen Green drunk-blogging it (which I presume he’ll be doing Update: Yup, he is) and read the transcript later. At least I’ll get some entertainment value out of it first.

(update: discovered a link I thought I'd pasted in  missing: "It is his crutch....")
(update to update: the drunkblog transcript is here.)
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Sunday, January 24, 2010

After the Storm - Four Peaks With a Fresh Coat of Snow

We've had a very stormy, rainy week here in Arizona. Of course the California coast got it far worse. We just got what was left over after the storms rolled through there, which is how it usually works. Bad weather is rare for us here. In fact we're kind of glad for the change of pace and we can always use the rain. There are other compensations too. Take a look at the view of Four Peaks, which is about 25-30 miles Northeast of us. We're at 1,400 feet MSL, Four Peaks rises to 7,500 feet so after one of these Winter storms we're almost always treated to a view of snow-capped mountains, even as we wander around the valley in short sleeves.

Note the palm trees visble over the rooftops in the foreground.

This is a view along one of the SRP (Salt River Project) canal paths which forms part of a network of walking and bike paths around town. And here are some canal residents......

All together, a very pleasant weekend.
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Saturday, January 09, 2010

Are Radical Islamists Setting Our National Security Agenda?

That is the question that Bill Whittle, Stephen Green and Scott Ott explore in the latest Trifecta segment at PJTV. I don't think you'll like the answer to the question. I know I don't. Go and watch the whole thing.  Apparently there is more to come.

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Friday, January 08, 2010

Another Fine Musical Offering from the Minnesotans for Global Warming

From the guys who brought you the smash hit "Hide the Decline" comes this new offering:

(h/t, Bob)
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Thursday, January 07, 2010

American Thinker - The Intellectual Dishonesty of the Democrats

There's a good essay by Lauri B. Regan over at the American Thinker on the Democrat's inetellctual dishonesty. Of course you should read the whole piece but here's the conclusion:

As my colleague asked Al Gore, "How's that global warming working out for you," it would have been nice to hear Gore respond, "I don't know." But there is no money for politicians -- or con-artists -- who admit that they just don't know. There are no earmarks and windfalls being sent to the intellectually honest people with the moral character to admit that they don't have all of the answers, but that they are going to gather all the facts first before drawing conclusions which will affect generations of individuals, vast portions of the economy, and individual rights previously safeguarded in a Constitution being usurped before our eyes.
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America Rising - A Video Open Letter to Democrat Pols

Via Powerline, we have a very powerful YouTube video. Like the Powerline guys, I didn't buy the hopey/changy thing for a second. Unfortunately 53% of us did. Now they regret it. Watch.

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Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Connecticut Senatorial Candidate Richard Blumenthal Has His Ass Handed to Him

If the Republicans can't beat this mealy-mouthed weasel, Connecticut AG Richard Blumenthal, in the contest for Christopher Dodd's seat, they deserve to be relegated to permanent obscurity. Watch Glenn Beck eviscerate him.

(via Instapundit)
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Saturday, January 02, 2010

More Evidence of Fraudulent "Science" in the AGW Debate

Powerline has some fairly lengthy excerpts from an editorial by Fred Singer of the Science and Environmental Policy Project. The man-made climate change fraud didn't start with Climategate. That just finally exposed it for all the world to see.  It's an interesting read but what it all boils down to is this:

So the Kyoto protocol was based on fictitious science, exaggerated or fabricated outright for political purposes. The same Professor Santer who hijacked the Second Assessment Report figures prominently in Climategate. Many of his emails were disclosed by the East Anglia whistleblower; among other things, they show Santer resisting all efforts by independent scientists to obtain information, through Freedom of Information Act requests, about the statistical manipulations that Santer applies to raw climate data to "prove" the existence of anthropogenic global warming

Fraud: it is the one constant in the history of the global warming hysteria movement.
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