Axis of Right

Three Native Rhode Islanders Commenting From the Right on Politics and Anything Else

Archive for July, 2007

Joyeux Bastille Day!!!

Posted by Ryan on July 14, 2007

France used to be cool.  But then Charles de Gaulle ruined international French influence into its current joke-like status after snubbing the USA, NATO and American interests whenever he could after World War II and during the Cold War. Quite ungrateful in my opinion.  This French nationalist poisoned relations between the US and France to the point where anti-American French leaders, like Jacques Chirac, are known as “de Gaullists” nowadays.  France got the bomb and the European Union moving under de Gaulle, but he dropped out of NATO twice, had to flee his nation for safety during the 1968 riots, fomented real strife in Algeria, and protested American involvement in the Vietnam War (France did such a bang-up job there themselves!).

But before him, France helped us win our independence, was an ally throughout much of the 1800s, essentially provided us with the Statue of Liberty, and fought side-by-side with us in World War I and II.  And it all goes back to Bastille Day, kind of like France’s version of the Fourth of July here.

Here’s the story:  On July 14, 1789 the mother of all European revolutions began in earnest because of a confrontation around the Parisian armory, prison and notorious symbol of royal oppression called the Bastille.  The mob took it by force, symbolizing that the French King’s power was not absolute.  A month earlier, the Third Estate (just about everyone in France outside the ruling class) took the Tennis Court Oath which created a National Assembly to address the needs of the masses.  This Oath and Assembly put the people in a foul mood towards an apathetic King Louis XVI that led to the storming of the Bastille. 

What’s neat about the French Revolution was that it was highly influenced by our own American Revolution.  Self-rule was deemed possible without a King in the way.  Many French intellectuals and soldiers who fought with America in our Revolutionary War thought France could do it too.  Thomas Jefferson believed in spreading the Revolution outside American borders and was seeing his dream fulfilled overseas in America’s most important ally of the period, France.  The French attempt at self-rule without a King influenced such revolutions all across Europe at regular intervals throughout the 1800s, making “democracy” an ideal that Europeans could embrace too.  For that, the French Revolution is a watershed period in European history.

Jefferson was newly appointed Secretary of State and was 100% behind the French effort until things took a turn for the worse.  As usual, the French messed it up.  The French Revolution was not like ours: after King Louis and his family were executed, the horrid “Reign of Terror”, controlled by the “Committee of Public Safety” (sounds like a bunch of over zealous liberals if you ask me!), turned France to an ostensible bloody dictatorship.  After the Committee was disbanded, an interim Directory tried to maintain order until a coup propelled Napoleon Bonaparte to Emperor.  At that point Jefferson was President of the United States and bought Louisiana from Napoleon, essentially normalizing relations.  In the meantime we had a Quasi-War with France that led former President John Adams to sign the infamous Alien and Sedition Acts which hurt immigrants and tried to criminalize Republican politics (Adams was a Federalist!).  Napoleon spread French revolutionary ideals all over Europe as the last great moment of French influence and power took form.  They’ve been trying to get back there ever since, but often look quite pitiful for trying too hard. 

Pic from Mal Langston, Corbis/Reuters.

Posted in Anything Else, Europe | 1 Comment »

Democrats Silencing Democrats

Posted by Ryan on July 13, 2007

If you haven’t heard already, John “Polly Prissy Pants” Edwards and She Who Must Not Be Named were caught by open microphones trying to coordinate the dumping of all the lower tier candidates from future debates yesterday.  What an obnoxious public display of hyprocricy at the NAACP Presidential Forum!  What about SWMNBN’s embrace of the “Fairness Doctrine,” allowing us all to hear every side of political speech through government dictate?  Oh, well.

Whereas Mike Gravel and Dennis Kucinich have absolutely no chance of getting the nomination (add Joe Biden and Chris Dodd to that list), their point of view and people that they represent should be heard at this early stage of the game.  The Republicans have the quaint Ron Paul folks, but we put up with them because as out of touch as he is, he has a modest and dedicated online fanbase of paleocons.  Maybe in November ’07 they can get the ax, but that should be up to the venue, not the candidates as to who is or is not on the stage at any given debate! 

I also noticed how Barack O’Bama was not part of the covert chat and that SWMNBN and Edwards engaged in.  Hmm…  SWMNBN knows that Edwards sucks up some of her votes, but that O’Bama is her real competition (O’Bama hasn’t yet sent his wife to use Annie C to bolster his campaign).  Since SWMNBN’s female and sometimes uses big words to convince the masses she’s the smartest woman in the world, she can outwit Edwards in the long-run.  That’s a tougher sell on O’Bama.  We all know they want to eliminate the background noise and many followers of the forums/debates have hoped for that for a while now, but as a candidate you can’t say it!  Perhaps, SWMNBN just created a Republican campaign commercial for next year.  Of course that’s assuming the Republicans are savvy enough to use it.

Here’s the Drudge-linked story.

Posted in Election 2008, Politics | 1 Comment »

Big Brother 8: Carol Evicted

Posted by Mike on July 12, 2007

Earlier tonight, the group inside the Big Brother house grew a little smaller when Carol became the first houseguest to be evicted. Sitting on the block alongside Amber, she was evicted by a vote of 10-1. I’m generally pleased with this outcome because Carol was quite boring. Amber on the other hand, is usually entertaining because of her constant crying, seems to know what she is doing game wise, and is allies with Joe’s nemesis, Dustin. (As Ryan previously mentioned, Joe has got to go).

There isn’t much to say about Carol both because she is boring and it is so early in the game. However, her departure is significant because she was one of the six houseguests who was forced to play the game with an “enemy.” Her enemy was her old high school rival, Jessica, of whom we will speak no ill because of, um, well, her beaming personality.

With thirteen houseguests now remaining, the face of the game now changes as Jen replaces Kail as Head of Household. Jen is quite annoying, but hopefully she will nominate Joe and eventually rid him from our television screens. If she does, her stock will rise.

CBS photo

For other BB posts, click the reality television category on the right site of this page.

Posted in Reality Television | Leave a Comment »

Interim Iraq Report on the Surge

Posted by Ryan on July 12, 2007

According to the Bush Administration, 8 of 18 “benchmarks” have been satisfactorily met in Iraq (pdf) during the Surge period, not the overall gloomy failure that was being reported earlier this week.  Yet, these benchmark successes deal mostly with the military, rather than the political side of things over in Iraq.  I think this is both good and not so good.  The Iraqis are taking it to the enemy and running more of their day-to-day operations, which is good, but the Iraqi Parliament has not passed a major political reform measure that was supposed to deal with oil revenues, electoral reforms, and debaathification.  This needs to change. 

Iraq must step things up or they’ll lose whatever political will Americans still have left to aid them.  I can accept that it is a difficult fight against the various bad guys in Iraq, but there has to be some substantive political payback on the side of the Iraqis!  If we see that their government cannot handle big decisions, then what else can we do for them?  Though the political battle over Iraq in Congress is often insincere and callous, it’s only going to get worse unless the Iraqi government can prove that it cannot only run a military, but run a country too.

Posted in The Iraq Front | Leave a Comment »

Rudy Foes Take Message Outside the Boroughs

Posted by Mike on July 12, 2007

Shallow smear jobs against Rudy Giuliani have been commonplace in New York City’s artsy neighborhoods for years now, but they have largely been confined there. Now that he is running for President as a Republican however, the smear campaign has been stepped up and spread out to the rest of the country. One union group in particular, the International Association of Firefighters, is hellbent on destroying the Mayor with absurd claims that Rudy’s heroic leadership on September 11, 2001 exists only in the candidate’s own mind.

Jim Geraghty at the Campaign Spot has an amusing rebuttal to the thug union’s latest smear video, complete with liberal praise for the Mayor before they knew he would be standing in She Who Must Not Be Named’s way to the White House. My favorite smear was when they tried to blame Rudy for “failures” which occurred in 1993, you know the year before he became Mayor.

At this point, liberal fears have been focused on Fred Thompson but Rudy scares them too. They know that his record versus their rhetoric is a battle they cannot win. That is why they are attempting to rewrite history. The problem for the them is that September 11 was only six years ago. Although many people seem to have forgotten, most have not.  With Bush off the ballot in 2008, national security in general will become a major issue again.  The left does not want to fight on that issue when their opponent is Rudy Giuliani.

Posted in Election 2008, Politics | 3 Comments »

Lady Bird Johnson (1912-2007)

Posted by Mike on July 12, 2007

Lady Bird Johnson, former First Lady of the United States, passed away yesterday at the age of 94. She will be fondly remembered not only for her time in the White House, but also for her commitment to beautifying America. Texans in particular will think of her every time her wildflowers blanket their beautiful state. Lady Bird was a gracious woman who loved her country. May she rest in peace.

Austin American-Statesman photo.

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment »

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Movie Review

Posted by Ryan on July 11, 2007

I just got back from seeing the latest Harry Potter film based on JK Rowling’s internationally well-known series.  Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix was Rowling’s longest of the 7-part book series, but turns out to be the shortest of the films at around 2 hours and 12 minutes.  I wish these editors would stop the whole George Lucas targeted time nonsense and adopt Peter Jackson’s approach that fans will love it so let’s give them everything they need for a complete experience mindset instead. 

[MILD MOVIE SPOILERS] That being said, I liked it.  Probably the best film of the series, in fact.  Having already read Phoenix, I obviously had some reservations about some of the things that they chose to cut (more on that later).  But, it’s Hollywood and they live and die by the bottom line, plus it’s always hard to please hard-core fans of a book-turned-movie.  I believed that this film was the darkest of the five and actually had much more focus than the book did, which could wander around from time to time in all its 870-page glory.  Gone was Quidditch and those quirky “wow this is magic?” scenes that played to the kiddies in the first two films especially.  Gone was Dobby and any new minor characters that diluted the plot getting much play.  In was Luna Lovegood– awkward and often painful to watch, but that’s how I pictured her.  In was the love-to-hate Umbridge who will get under your skin very quickly.  In was a cameo of Kreacher and lots of Sirius Black.  In fact, the Black/Potter scenes were well done in my opinion and really added necessary depth to the movie.  In was a lot of blood for a Harry Potter movie, the dementor scene was cool, and the sinister Bellatrix LeStrange is the epitome of an evil witch.

But, I had some real problems with the cut.

One big problem with the movie, in my opinion, worries me about this same director, David Yates, doing the Half-Blood Prince film.  The emotional climax of the series thus far was Dumbledore and Harry in Dumbledore’s office after the Ministry battle when Albus comes clean and Harry vents his anger and frustration after having just suffered a serious loss.  I was looking forward to this scene from the moment I first read it two summers ago!  Daniel Radcliffe would truly be able to prove that he is a really talented young actor.  Alas, it was all but gone, relegated to a short, even-tempered measly flashback while Harry was packing, with none of the emotional charge and none of the true sense of revelation that comes through brilliantly in the book.  I’d have rathered they completely cut the Ministry battle scene (which was really cool) than cut this.  But they did.  And I was not pleased. 

Altogether, I did enjoy the movie, giving it a B+/A- as a film and for entertainment value, but a C/C- as a fan because of the major let down at the end.  I don’t feel out of line by proposing a low grade based upon the scene they chose to cut.  Yates and his editors need to do a better job with Half-Blood Prince from this picky fan’s perspective.

Pic from CanMag.

Posted in Anything Else, Pop Culture | Leave a Comment »

McCain’s Troubles

Posted by Ryan on July 10, 2007

Senator Smeagol, John McCain, is feeling the pain of being unpopular as two high-level resignations took place today by two irreplacable staffers.  Both McCain’s campaign manager and chief strategist resigned on their own, not because of a fit from the Unstable One.  The illegal immigration issue effectively destroyed McCain’s campaign given his current competition, setting up a Thompson springboard whenever Fred wants to join in.  So, McCain’s tried to latch onto the Congressional trouble over supporting Iraq, taking the sensible position of letting General Petraeus report on where things are by September 15.  Though consistent, his quick response to the alleged Democrat legislation to lose the war now seems suspect and timely in a way to use an issue he’s been strong on to revitalize his candidacy.  Ultimately, I don’t think it’ll work.  He’s shown us through his bill with “Fins” that he’s a Washington crony and insider, and really doesn’t care what his party thinks.  Tell me again why he should be our nominee?

AP Photo.

Posted in Election 2008, Politics, The Iraq Front | 1 Comment »

Fred Thompson: He Who Will Not Be Smeared?

Posted by Mike on July 9, 2007

The media are terrified of Fred Thompson. We saw it in the AP’s pathetic attempt to link the Tennessean to Watergate. We saw it in Michael Moore’s hilarious attempt to discredit him. Now we are seeing it in a recent LA Times hit piece alleging that Thompson, on behalf of well-known law firm Arent Fox, lobbied Bush the Elder’s White House on behalf a pro-choice group back in 1991. Thompson advisers denied this charge. Bush the Elder aides including John Sununu also denied it. In fact, while those who leveled the charge were doing so, they were also offering explanations that they were not lying. Talk about a red flag.

Well Captain’s Quarters is poking some holes in this latest smear. Among other things, they point out that alleged pro-choice lobbying by Arent Fox was done in September of 1991, but Thompson didn’t register as a foreign lobbyist until October of 1991. (Although it appears that domestic lobbyists did not have to register at the time, the fact that Thompson registered as a foreign lobbyist in October suggests that was when Thompson’s lobbying for his firm began). When this fact is added to the absence of any billing records proving that Thompson worked for the abortion lobby, denials by Bush the Elder officials, LA Times backtracking, and Thompson’s clean voting record on the life issue, it appears that someone is desperate to smear Fred.

The media’s fear of Fred Thompson is starting to become obvious, but it appears that they are not the only ones afraid of Fred. Further digging reveals that the smear originated from supporters of . . . She Who Must Not Be Named.

It’s tough to say at this point, but maybe she fears Fred too. The media wing of her campaign certainly does. Isn’t it a little early to be desperate though?

Posted in Election 2008, Media Bias | 4 Comments »

Harry Reid on Iraq– The Ostrich Brigade Returns

Posted by Ryan on July 9, 2007

Senate Majority Leader and old wuss-bag Harry “The Body” Reid is up to his old antics again by trying to pressure President Bush to cut-and-run in Iraq citing new Republican defections to the cut-and-run, Ostrich Brigade strategy (put your head in the sand and the bad guys’ll just go away).  The Dems can sniff out the carcas of Bush’s Presidency and want to feast, bringing some RINOs with them.  The Baghdad Security Plan (aka “the Surge”) is only about a month old, yet these old buzzards in the Senate want to scramble for the hills because it is tough going and not showing immediate results that they like.

Bill Kristol of the Weekly Standard has a few things to say to President Bush about this debate that I think the President needs to listen to.  The Dems are only doing this because their kook-fringe financiers demand that America turn tail and run, so Reid’s placating to that interest group at the expense of our active troops in the field, increasing America’s already soiled image in the region, and non-wacko members of the electorate (especially the Blue Dogs).  To Kristol, Bush needs to be stubborn on the issue of Iraq and avoid the temptation of a “Grand Bargain” on the war, which failed miserably on the illegal immigration issue and would be politically fatal to him if applied to Iraq in any way the Dems propose it.

I’m eerily starting to feel Bush is less like a Truman (despised by many, even in his party, at the time and embraced by many after the years had passed) and more like a Carter (weak, inconsistent and politically wobbly on the most important issues of the day and viewed as an inept leader in a time when we needed strength).  It pains me feel that it didn’t have to be this way.

Pic from The Upper Left blog.

Posted in Politics, The Iraq Front | 2 Comments »

Live Earth Flopped!

Posted by Ryan on July 9, 2007

The pan-world Live Earth concert was essentially a dud to most neutral media observers.  This was the moment!  Algore preached to everyone in the world he could reach about his message and tried to galvanize support for action now.  Yet, the crowds were not huge, the acts were so-so, the message seemed forced, and the response was unimpressive.  Live 8 and Live Aid attracted much bigger acts and crowds in Britain, a much more brainwashed nation than America on imminent destruction caused by carbon-based global warming and the plight of Africa.  Where was Bono?  He’s there for every important cause with a kind of moral tone that often does convince the masses!  What about U2, or Coldplay, Radiohead, REM, Bruce Springsteen, or Bob Dylan in London or the Meadowlands?  Those bands are well-known activist bands that carry large, dedicated fan bases.

Two things are possible: poor planning or true apathy.  It is possible that spreading your audience around seven continents on one day is hard to organize, but it is also possible that they did everything right–and people generally don’t care.  This youth generation is being preached to by a group that was very activist as youths.  These kids are just not activists like their elders.  They’d much rather do something than just talk about it around a bunch of hypocritical yes-people.  Less than half voted in 2004 (42.4% ages 18-24) and 2000 (33.8% ages 18-24), during a war that risks drafting this very age cohort, all with Dubya in the White House looking for reelection!   Who knows how to reach them, but it is becoming evident that Algore has not.

Hat Tip to Drudge for the links.  View Images pic.

Posted in Anything Else, Culture, Politics | Leave a Comment »

Democrats Can’t Win On Ideas

Posted by Sal on July 9, 2007

In yet another example of how Democrat’s cannot win in the arena of ideas, a new popular author of the left, scientist Drew Weston, is telling the Democrats that they must play to voter’s emotions to win elections, and that they must counter Republican “scare-tactics.”  It again goes to show that the Democrat’s policy ideas are not popular with the American public, and therefore must be “framed” or downplayed, and appeals must be met instead with emotional appeals.  Weston’s big mistake is assuming that the Republicans have won because of this in the past.  Republicans win because they espose conservative principles that work, such as lower taxes, enhanced security, strong defense, etc.  (Witness the elections of 1980 and 1984, and the 1994 congressional election as prime examples).  Democrats lose whenever they are honest about their ideas (Carter, Mondale, Dukakis, Kerry) and only win when they hide their ideas and Republicans are not true to conservative ideals (both of which happened in 2006 as well as in 1992). 

The Democrats continue to shoot themselves in the foot with these “electoral strategies”, focusing on how they can fool the American people now rather than try to convice people of their ideas.  I honestly feel that 2008 is already the Republicans for the taking.  The only problem is, will the Republicans seize this advantage and portray themselves as true conservatives with a vision for America, or will they shrink back into RINO mode, and blow it all.  I fear the latter is more likely. 

Posted in Election 2008, Politics | 2 Comments »

Jon Tester: “Won and Done”

Posted by Ryan on July 8, 2007

Montana Democrat and least senior of all 100 old goats in the Senate, Jon Tester, has a solution to Iraq:  declare victory and leave!  Oh boy.  This is a problem the Democrats have to contend with from the 2006 Election: blue dogs, or Democrats elected from traditionally Republican districts whose seats are vulnerable if they tow the party line on everything.  Many of them were elected to change course in Iraq, not lose it like the unfortunate Democratic Party line.

So, as Tester sees it, we’ve accomplished all of our goals in Iraq and staying there isn’t necessary any longer.  We achieved regime change, we made sure there were no WMDs, and we set up the conditions for free and fair elections that produced a democratic-like government.  His complaint is that is it not up to America to resolve a long-standing civil war which was there before we showed up and will be there after we leave.  Hey wait a minute… did a Democrat just say we won?  This cannot square well with Dingy Harry who’s been declaring defeat all year!  But, Tester is from a very red state, but is doing this not because he believes it, but because it’ll give the Democrats political cover and allow them to declare victory in Iraq while cutting and running.  I do not trust his motives. 

Yet, I’ve been saying something similar to Tester (but I actually mean it) for a while now:  if there is a defeat, then is it an Arab defeat– how much more can we give these people before it is no longer our fault using the very same objectives that Tester uses?  Arguing over the reasons for war is effectively meaningless and has been for three years, so let’s look at the current conditions.  We’ve decided that Baghdad needs to be stabilized before we can leave so the troop surge was put into place.  That process is playing out to decent success, despite Democrat attempts to ruin it.  Once the surge has played out for a few more months and the conditions change, we can reevaluate then. 

We are going to leave Iraq one day.  However, stabilizing it to our best ability helps us in the long run.  Just because Jon Tester thinks we’ve won for political reasons, doesn’t change the fact that if we leave too soon, we’ll just be back there in a couple of years.  Why?  Al Qaeda training camps will reopen and it will become the new Afghanistan that we’ll have to invade and take out anyway, this time a satellite of Iran as well.  Iraq is already the center of the War on Terror.  Better to do it right the first time (or in this case the second time, thanks Colin Powell) than have to come back later.

Posted in Politics, The Iraq Front, War on Terror | Leave a Comment »

Corzine’s Carbon Attack Team

Posted by Ryan on July 7, 2007

New Jersey’s Premier, Comrade Governor Jon Corzine, has bought into Algore’s global warming panic and took the NJ Politburo along with him.  The “Global Warming Response Act” sets into motion the country’s toughest carbon emission standards.  Fine, that’s his prerogative.  But he had to lecture Washington along the way telling them to “wake up” and get on board with lofty goals such as his by 2020 and 2050.  NJ’s law is more enforceable than California’s strict laws, but I love this bit from the Reuters article: (I’ve added the italics)

New Jersey, which has a hub of oil refineries and chemical plants in its northern region, aims to fight emissions by promoting renewable energy like solar and wind power and by helping consumers to conserve power.

Public Service Enterprise Group, owner of New Jersey’s largest utility, said PSEG supports the law but that it would lead to higher power prices.

“I believe customers are willing to pay for the higher costs associated with the environmental benefits,” the company’s Chief Executive Ralph Izzo told Reuters at the ceremony where Corzine signed the bill.

The New Jersey Business and Industry Association opposes the law, saying it would raise fees and give sweeping powers to state agencies.

Big surprise–let’s run our cars and businesses on sunshine and sails, then charge everybody more without innovative solutions while letting the government regulate everything it can.  Typical Liberalism:  government is the solution, the people and business must be led like sheep since they don’t know what’s good for them, and basing hard economic and social policy on incomplete and contradictory scientific data. 

Not believing the myths about the dangers of global warming does not make one stupid, it just makes them open-minded and not gullible to the whims of self-interested scientists and insecure politicians.  Even if we doubled our carbon emissions planetwide by 2100, the Earth’s tempurature may only increase by 0.5C degrees, which is statistically and historically insignificant and within normal fluctuations.  Why does the sky always have to be falling for these people? I’m sure a market based solution with tax incentives over the same time period would get the same results faster, without the socialism restricting and harming business and the consumer.

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment »

Fred Thompson Gives Media a Right Fright

Posted by Mike on July 7, 2007

If early coverage of Fred Thompson’s campaign is any indication, the mainstream media are positively terrified of the prospect of a Fred Thompson presidency. This hit piece in particular is something that could have been written by the DNC itself. It attempts to link Fred Thompson with Richard Nixon and Watergate despite the fact that Thompson was the person who revealed the existence of White House secret recordings which eventually brought down the President.

The fun doesn’t stop there.  In addition to trying to link Thompson with Nixon, the hit piece also regurgitates the old Democrat political standby used when facing a formidable Republican opponent: call him stupid.

Fred Thompson gained an image as a tough-minded investigative counsel for the Senate Watergate committee. Yet President Nixon and his top aides viewed the fellow Republican as a willing, if not too bright, ally, according to White House tapes.

Some people never learn.  That’s what they said about Reagan too.

Liberals are perfectly free to argue that their Republican opponent is corrupt or stupid. It won’t work because they can’t credibly defend the position, but they have the right to at least try. What is out of bounds for liberals making such an argument is the concomitant attempt to present themselves as objective journalists. Most people see right through such bias; however, some swing voters who pay little attention to current events might not. That is where alternative media needs to step in.

Despite the infuriating nature of this hit piece, I am encouraged by its barely concealed desperation at this early stage of the campaign.  The AP is clearly as afraid of Fred Thompson as John Edwards is of a split end. Something tells me Fred Thompson would be a pretty decent President if the media is this troubled by him this early on.

Posted in Election 2008, Media Bias | Leave a Comment »

Live Earth Hypocrisy

Posted by Ryan on July 7, 2007

Algore’s big world-wide concert, “Live Earth“, is taking place today, 7-7-07 (the day, by the way, that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows should be coming out, but I digress).  MSN is the online sponsor, so NBC, MSDNC, and Bravo will also be running or reporting on the concert all day long.  Its point is to “raise awareness” to the climate crisis, but in the word of a critic, Live Earth is “a massive hypocritcal fraud” in that those performing will fly about 222,624 miles to get the the various venues and over 1000 tons of waste will be generated by the spectators.  Planes don’t run on good will and pixie dust, they run on jet fuel.  If they really wanted to walk-the-walk, they could have had NBC, MSDNC show the concert for free on TV or have MSN stream the concert with easy access to make this available to everyone without having to waste jet fuel or landfill space.  But, Algore gets free press from a Liberal media outlet willing to embrace his philosophy.

So, what about those people attending this concert?  How are they going to get there?  We know they’re going to eat and drink beverages that come in disposable containers.  Are they going to use the facilities during the concert or before their drive home?  See the problem is, when you’re telling the world that they must change their behavior now or we’ll be underwater in 20 years, yet the messengers are completely hypocritical in their behaviors, even to the point of inventing the notion of “carbon offsets” to make themselves feel better for not having to sacrifice the way they want all of us to sacrifice, then you turn into a joke to the neutral observer.  Algore is a joke, this concert is just a concert that’s not going to change anyone’s mind who’s not already mindnumbed, but it’s their right to put their ridiculous hypocrisy in the public arena for all to see.

Pic from The Age.

Posted in Anything Else, Culture, Media Bias, Politics | 3 Comments »

Clearstream Becoming Less Murky

Posted by Mike on July 6, 2007

Every time I read anything about Jacques Chirac and Dominique de Villepin, I’m forced to wonder whether either man possesses anything even resembling a redeeming quality. According to New York’s best newspaper, de Villepin may be investigated for claims that he and Chirac tried to frame now President Sarkozy for corruption in an attempt to sabotage his Presidential ambitions.

It is established fact that Sarkozy was innocent of the charges. The remaining issue is whether de Villepin had anything to do with the attempt to frame Sarko from the shadows in what has come to be called the Clearstream affair. Now that the weasel’s home has been searched, more information should be forthcoming.

This investigation notwithstanding, the fact that this Sarko has de Villepin as a political enemy makes me like him even more.

AP photo

Posted in Europe, Politics | 1 Comment »

Palmetto Whispers

Posted by Mike on July 6, 2007

The marriage between Lindsey Graham and conservatives is on the rocks. Without a Republican challenger however, Graham can relax as he continues to fulfill his lifelong dream of being “Senator for life.” Despite conservative hopes to the contrary, news of potential challengers has been practically non-existent. Fortunately, whispers have been heard in South Carolina Republican circles. Several Republican elected officials have been approached about a potential challenge. One official, State Representative Jeff Duncan is seriously considering a run.

It’s encouraging to hear movement on this front. Although I’m not one to blindly support the Republican Party, I also recognize the necessity of forming coalitions with moderate Republicans who still agree with us more often than not. What I cant stand are Republicans who repeatedly oppose conservative values while insulting those who form their political base. Lincoln Chafee was the perfect example of this. Graham isn’t too far behind.

The risks that come with a primary challenge must always be considered. Last year, Lincoln Chafee faced a primary challenge in Rhode Island. Although he survived the primary, Chafee was damaged by November and the Republicans lost the seat. South Carolina is a different story though. Unlike the Island of Rhode where the people are conservative, think they’re moderate and vote liberal, South Carolina is a conservative state where the people know they’re conservative and then vote that way. There is much less downside to challenging Graham in South Carolina than there was to challenging Chafee in Rhode Island.

That said, any challenger has to be well-known and well-financed. Although no one has stepped up, it is encouraging that our South Carolinian friends are at least looking for someone.

Posted in Election 2008, Politics | 2 Comments »

Happy Birthday President Bush!

Posted by Ryan on July 6, 2007

Dubya turns 61 today.  That would mean he was born in 1946.  Demographically, this makes Bush a Baby-Boomer, like his predecessor BJ Clinton.  Bill’s a bit younger, turning 61 next month.  George has a loving wife and two successful 25 year old daughters, and a large, close-knit family.  He’s a born-again Methodist who struggled with alcoholism, business failures and political successes.

Alas, Bush has had a very disappointing presidency, especially since there was so much promise.  Even without a 9/11 he could have salvaged things for his seemingly clouded presidency with his tax policy.  Yet, 9/11 showed us all who he can be:  strong, principled, with America’s interests at heart and in action.  Since being reelected, however, he let the press define the Katrina disaster practically blaming him for an act of God, he let Iraq wallow for too long in paralysis, he let his Social Security and tax reform initiatives flounder, and he failed to see the borders for what they are, a national security lapse, which has hurt him deeply amongst his conservative base, including me. 

Can he turn things around before he leaves or is he just going to clock-watch until January 20, 2009?  I don’t know.  If the troops come home victorious from Iraq (by leaving it stable and able to defend itself) and he at least gets a borders bill passed, then maybe.  Otherwise, as Newt Gingrich once said, he could end up being the Republican Party’s version of Jimmy Carter.  Shudder.

Pic from Extreme Mortman.

Posted in Anything Else, Politics | 4 Comments »

Big Brother 8: Joe Has Got to Go!

Posted by Ryan on July 5, 2007

I just watched the first episode of Big Brother Season 8 tonight and I’ve come to this conclusion:  Joe sucks!  But seriously folks, he needs to get voted off now!  He made two really dumb mistakes on the first day in the Big Brother House:

  1. The eleven House guests were told that three more people were joining them.  Suddenly, when the House found out that three of them were having enemies join them in the House, Joe turned from nice funny gay-guy to wretched, potentially back-stabbing bitty, showing how quickly and severe his emotions and composure can turn.
  2. So, he started telling a story about his ex-boyfriend, Dustin, who gave him the clap (mysteriously, of course) who was a lying back-stabbing meanie… just two minutes before Dustin walked down the stairs to join the rest of the House!  I mean, who does that?  In front of people you just met and will be competing against for $500,000, go shouting that you caught gonorrhea from your ex-boyfriend who actually might come down those stairs– and in this case did!

So, Joe has to go for two reasons:  he’s too emotional to trust with the ever realigning alliances in Big Brother, and there is now a huge “ick” factor surrounding him.  Personally, I’ve never seen a reality show where a contestant tells everyone in the first episode they had an STD.  That’s just not normal.  Oh, wait.  Real World 3: who could forget Pedro!

CBS photo.

Posted in Anything Else, Pop Culture, Reality Television | 2 Comments »

Big Brother 8 Starts Tonight! But First

Posted by Mike on July 5, 2007

The wait is over. The eighth season of Big Brother kicks off this evening at 8 PM on CBS. With All-Stars airing last summer, this season will feature the first new cast in two years. A quick glance at the official Big Brother website predictably shows a cast that looks as boring and phony as can be. This is always the first impression; however, first impressions can be misleading. No cast look more artificial and unentertaining before the premiere than Season six, but that was the cast that gave us Janelle and the Jedi.

Every season in recent memory has operated around a theme. This season’s theme is enemies. According to CBS, some of the Houseguests will play the game with someone from their past, someone they thought and hoped they would never see again. It will be interesting to see which enemies target each other and which bury their differences and form alliances.

Over the last few weeks, I posted videos from seasons past mostly because I couldn’t wait for the new season. Since it is still technically “pre-season”, I figured I would post one last video. This clip is a tribute to the woman who hosts the program, Julie “Chenbot” Chen. Chen is not the best television personality out there. In fact, she is robotic and usually downright incompetent. However, her routine is so bad that is actually entertaining and still manages to give Big Brother some of its charm. The show wouldn’t be the same without her.

So the season begins tonight, but first

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Tony Snow Knocks the Clintons

Posted by Ryan on July 5, 2007

I like this kind of stuff… you know, Conservatives actually responding to Lib criticism!  Tony Snow, upon hearing that John Conyers is going to have hearing to investigate the commuting of Libby’s sentence by the White House, replied that Conyers could just “knock himself out” with that task and asked Conyers to look into January 20, 2001 (the day that BJ pardoned 140 people including a fugitive criminal Marc Rich and those Puerto Rican FALN terrorists) while he’s at it. 

This is just another example of how the Left is trying to criminalize politics.  It is Bush’s right as the chief executive to pardon whoever he wants.  You may not like it, but it is still Bush’s constitutional right and in this case it’s not even a full pardon!  BJ Clinton even called what Bush did consistent with the Bush team’s philosophy that “the law is a minor obstacle.”  His “wife”, She Who Must Not Be Named, linked this to Bush’s effort to “stifle dissent.” Classic projection.

Ha!  I love this kind of hypocrisy on the part of the Left.  Do they think we’re stupid?  Do they think those that pay attention do not have memories?  However, most of the time, the Right doesn’t fight back and lets these things slide playing that “new-tone” nonsense. 

Pic from Sydney Morning Herald.

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment »

Commuting Scooter Libby

Posted by Ryan on July 4, 2007

I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby got a well-deserved commutation of his ridiculous sentence Monday.  The jury in the case found him guilty of perjury and obstruction of justice, but the judge sentenced him to an excessive 30 months in the slammer!  He did wrong, but not remembering which reporter you talked to first many years ago versus remembering who was pleasuring you under the desk in the Oval Office are two VERY different things in my opinion.  Thus, though both are wrong, the punishment should be different. 

On top of all that, Patrick Fitzgerald’s investigation into who leaked Plame’s name to the public discovered the guilty party years ago– Richard Armitage should fry… if releasing Plame’s name was a crime, which it is not. That’s been made abundantly clear by Armitage’s continued freedom and lack of any real charges brought by the Independent Counsel.  The whole investigation was a political witch-hunt if there ever was one.  It seemed like the Left’s attempt to criminalize the Iraq War and take Cheney down in the process.  That was very transparent after the first few hearings.

The Left’s reaction to the whole thing yesterday was predictable and intellectually dishonest–Jesse Jackson Jr. even called for Bush’s impeachment! (Get in line Jesse!)  Where was he in 2000 when BJ Clinton used his executive power of pardon on cronies, terrorists and others convicted of real pre-meditated crimes?  Right.  Two sets of rules: one for the Lib elite and one for the rest of us.

Pic from the Sydney Morning Herald.

Posted in Media Bias, Politics | 1 Comment »

Happy Fourth of July!!!

Posted by Ryan on July 4, 2007

Happy Fourth of July from all of us here at Axis of Right!  America turns 231 today.  We celebrate the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia as our national birth date, but more importantly, the ideas behind the document and what that has meant for America since.  The Colonies had been in open armed revolt since April 1775 at Lexington and Concord, but then the Second Continental Congress called for the creation of an army headed by George Washington.  This was simply a rebellion until July 1776.  Then it became a revolution.  Then our Founding Fathers were not just rabble-rousers, they were treasonous criminals who were likely to hang from the nearest tree if the British got a hold of them.  But they were right to oppose tyranny and set a precendent for over 200 years of similar revolutions around the world and a philosophy that self-rule responsive to the needs of the people is thus far the best political system under which to live.

In recent politics, Ronald Reagan uttered this famous phrase I always think of this time of year:

“Republicans believe every day is the Fourth of July, but the democrats believe every day is April 15.”

That one speaks for itself.

Pic from Jupiter Images.

Posted in Anything Else, Culture | Leave a Comment »

Jimmah, the Broken Clock

Posted by Ryan on July 3, 2007

Wow!  I just learned something new today!  I suppose the law of averages goes to show that even on accident something good can come out of something so bad.  In November of 1978, Jimmah legalized the brewing of beer at home.  While most homebrew is swill, it is kind of a freedom thing.  So I guess that broken clock was right at least once– Camp David’s legacy is still being played out so we’re not ready to give him that one yet!

Note: while Billy Beer was not a homebrew, we here at AOR like to take any chance to swipe at our 39th President and his drunken brother. By the way, the Falls Brewing Company did go out of business the year after it was released! Hiccup.

Pic from this Northern European website

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The Right Honourable Ostrich

Posted by Mike on July 3, 2007

Just days after Islamic terrorists attempted to attack London and successfully attacked Glasgow International Airport, Gordon Brown has forbidden his ministers from using word “Muslim” when describing terrorism. This move comes despite the fact that every act of international terrorism in recent years in the UK and elsewhere has been committed by Muslims. I’m sure the BBC will be gushing with pride over this bout of political correctness.

Although Brown is clearly trying to avoid straining relations with British Muslims, such efforts are futile because that battle was lost years ago. Moderate Muslims, especially in the UK, are well aware of what terrorism is and abhor it. Narrowly-tailored statements connecting radical elements of Islam to terrorism will not offend Muslims who are truly outraged that the face of their religion has been hijacked by cowardly scum. Those Muslims who do not abhor terrorism are not people one should worry about offending anyway. Covering up the nature of Islamic terrorism will do nothing to solve the problem.

Less than a week into his reign, Gordon Brown is already beginning to show that he is no Tony Blair.

Posted in UK Politics, War on Terror | Leave a Comment »

I’m Just a Poor Boy Nobody Loves Me

Posted by Mike on July 2, 2007

John McCain’s campaign isn’t doing very well in the fundraising department. During the second quarter, he only managed to raise $11.2 million and now has only $2 million cash on hand. Because of this anemic fundraising, McCain has now been forced to fire much of his campaign staff, or as his friends in the MSM are trying to spin it, “reorganize” his campaign.

Most of us have been well aware of McCain’s downward spiral for quite some time, but now that he is having trouble raising money despite his connections and name recognition, it is now crystal clear that McCain’s Presidential campaign is going nowhere. For this, he has no one to blame but himself. Ever since he was anointed as the media’s favorite Republican in 2000, McCain has transformed into a Smigel/Gollum figure who is never quite sure of whether he loves or hates the Republican Party’s political base.

Sometimes you can almost hear him explaining to himself that the base loves him when supports the war in Iraq or spending reductions. At other times you can almost hear him explaining to himself that the base hates him when as he throws Gollum-like temper tantrums when he pushes amnesty for illegal immigrants, Gang of 14, undermining the First Amendment, opposing the Bush tax cuts, and supporting Roe v. Wade in front of certain audiences.

It’s one thing to depart from one’s party base every now and then. People rarely agree 100 percent of the time. However, it is quite another to repeatedly do so over a period of seven years while simultaneously insulting them. McCain’s choices over the years make it difficult for many conservatives to even consider voting for him in the primary, let alone shelling out money for him. John McCain has been giving conservatives the finger for years and now wants their support in his quest for his precious. Trouble is, those conservatives are now returning the favor.

Photo via Gamasutra

Posted in Election 2008, Politics | 1 Comment »

Politics with Newt Gingrich

Posted by Ryan on July 1, 2007

This Washington Post article makes potential presidential candidate Newt Gingrich look very much human, and very much visionary with ideas about everything, and opinions about everyone.  Newt has morphed from someone who was knee-deep in throes of power, politics, and the Clinton smear machine in the 1990s to someone who has successfully, in my opinion, made the transition to a policy visionary.  His “mega-workshop” American Solutions, is slated to be held the last weekend of September and will determine whether or not he’ll run for President.  He believes that the Republicans need an American Sarkozy to win in 2008 and real ideas on how to change the system for the better.  He was the brains behind organizing the “Contract With America”, so he’s got some credibility and results when he puts his mind to something. 

When pushed by the reporter, he admits that he’s more of a Ben Franklin than an Abraham Lincoln figure– bold statement coming from anyone.  Franklin was never President, but his views were highly respected, his brain was very big as well as useful, and his political clout was undeniable.  Lincoln was, of course, Lincoln– the man who kept the nation together during our darkest time, the Civil War, and helped usher in that “new birth of freedom” he spoke of in the Gettysburg Address, perhaps our nation’s most important post-Revolution speech. 

I’m starting to agree with that analogy.  Maybe Newt shouldn’t be President (despite his actual chances, I’m just pondering the thought here).  Since stepping down as Speaker in 1998 he’s been involved in real ideas about how to reinvent America (not just our government) in a way that works, is efficient, and brings trust and optimism back to the people.  Personally, I think he’s looking for another “New Deal” kind-of-thing just in reverse– a pro-business, pro-individual plan that brings trust back to the government and allows American ingenuity and ideals to flourish.  Tom Delay is quoted in the article saying that this is Newt’s biggest problem with Conservatives– Newt offers a new perspective on the use of government, not its roll-back. 

That’s a great point.  Newt’s always been a Republican who has found a use for government, which bothers many Conservatives.  He’s by no means a RINO, he’s just not Ronald Reagan’s ideological twin.  With a crowded field and baggage to claim, Newt’s best place is probably in the trenches promoting his idea-oriented outside-the-box agenda for success. 

Pic from BU’s The Daily Free Press. Second pic from Jupiter Images.

Posted in Election 2008, Politics | 1 Comment »

No Cliffhanger for Farfour

Posted by Mike on July 1, 2007

Hamasvision recently aired the series finale of their popular children’s terrorist cartoon, Farfour the Terror Mouse. In the finale, the little rodent was whacked in plain view by what Hamas described as a Israeli terrorist, sparing the already torn Palestinian “community” from a cliffhanger and the vigorous debates that inevitably come with it. Instead, the child hosting the program was able to deliver a eulogy in which she praised Farfour’s martyrdom.

Do you still think the U.S. should stop playing favorites Jimmy?

Posted in Politics, War on Terror | 3 Comments »