Archive for June, 2008
Posted by Ryan on June 30, 2008
Democrats are always uptight about that whole “patriotism” thing, knee-jerking into a frenzy every time the word is uttered. Even when they see unabashed patriots like John McCain, some Dems (like former Presidential candidate and undistinguished General Wesley Clark) aren’t sure how to react, so they pick on them in ways that don’t make sense. It’s not like Clark said McCain’s unpatriotic, but any patriotism street cred he may have accumulated at the Hanoi Hilton won’t necessarily make him a better commander-in-chief than, say, Barack Obama, who’s mentor was a terrorist.
After Obama threw Clark under the bus for his remarks today, Obama had to give a speech on patriotism today. One of the most peculiar quotes was this:
“Of course, precisely because America isn’t perfect, precisely because our ideals constantly demand more from us, patriotism can never be defined as loyalty to any particular leader or government or policy.”
Not even leaders like Lincoln? Not even a government that got rid of slavery, promotes civil rights at home and around the world from before the Cold War through today? Not even a policy that once sought to end fascism, communism, and now terrorism? I know support may not equal patriotism, but does it exclude one from being a patriot? It sounds strange and awkward, especially when he delivered those lines. He’s such an insecure post-9/11 Democrat.
If patriotism is so ethereal, then why give a speech about it to calm critics? Why do we have to be told what patriotism is to believe that Obama is patriotic? I have no doubt he loves this country, but I am piqued by his overt insecurity on this issue.
Posted in Election 2008, Media Bias, Politics, tyranny, War on Terror | Tagged: Abraham Lincoln, Barack Obama, Cold War, John McCain, patriotism, Wesley Clark | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Mike on June 29, 2008
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has once again displayed unfathomable incompetence when it comes to defending his country. Earlier today, the Prime Minister convinced his Cabinet to agree to a “prisoner exchange” in which Hezbollah will deliver the remains of two dead Israeli soldiers in exchange for the remains of ten terrorists and the release of five Hezbollah terrorists currently in Israeli custody.
Some message this deal sends to Hamas, the terrorist organization holding Gilad Shalit captive. Israel’s enemies can now conclude that a dead soldier is a sufficient price for the return of their terrorist foot soldiers.
Earlier this week, Olmert successfully delayed the inevitable, but I can’t wait until Israel votes again. When that happens, it will be interesting to see how Hezbollah and Hamas deal with the return of Benjamin Netanyahu.
HT on the title: Hugh Hewitt
Big Lizards has more on the so-called prisoner exchange.
Posted in Israel, Politics, War on Terror | Tagged: Benjamin Netanyahu, Ehud Goldwasser, Ehud Olmert, Eldad Regev, Gilad Shalit, Hamas, Hezbollah, Israeli politics, prisoner exchange, Samir Qantar, War on Terror | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ryan on June 29, 2008
We’ve all seen the video from February where Obama agreed wholeheartedly with the 32-year-old DC gun ban, then when the Supreme Court interpreted the 2nd Amendment to mean what it says last week, he was for that too even though it overturned the 32-year-old DC gun ban.
This incident recently reminded me of something my father once said about why on God’s Green Earth the American people voted for Jimmy Carter in 1976: aside for the Ford/Nixon pardon-thing, the American people found Carter affable because he was for everything they we for! Whenever he spoke to a new crowd, he told them what they wanted to hear, blurring the lines between what he really wanted to do. The result was a candidate, then President, who many people thought they agreed with, but in fact did not.
A recent Rasmussen poll indicates that 43% of the people think Obama disagreed with the Supreme Court’s ruling, while a full 41% think he did agree with the ruling! It seems like the Obama campaign is being effective at telling people what they want to hear when they want to hear it. It doesn’t really concerns me where Obama stands on this issue (we all know he won’t appoint anyone to the courts who would have voted to uphold the Constitution) but this is a potential problem for the Fall — saying whatever to whoever and getting away with it. Add that to the poor state of the McCain camp and we don’t have a prayer.
Posted in Culture, Election 2008, Judicial Watch, Politics | Tagged: Barack Obama, DC gun ban, Ford, Jimmy Carter, Nixon, Rasmussen, Second Amendment, Supreme Court | 1 Comment »
Posted by Mike on June 28, 2008
These videos are just cool. The story of how they came about isn’t bad either.
Posted in Anything Else, Culture | Tagged: Where The Hell Is Matt? | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Mike on June 27, 2008
While perusing the Corner earlier today, I was pleased to see that All American Colleges has published a guide for the top 50 schools for conservatives, old-fashioned liberals, and people of faith. I was even more pleased with the cover. I know many of you will agree. 🙂
Posted in Anything Else, Culture, Religion, Rhode Island | Tagged: All American Colleges, and People of Faith, conservative colleges, Old-Fashioned Liberals, Providence College, Top Schools For Conservatives | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ryan on June 27, 2008
Here’s a quote from San Fran Nan on the issue of high gas prices back in the summer of 2006:
“With skyrocketing gas prices, it is clear that the American people can no longer afford the Republican rubber-stamp Congress and its failure to stand up to the Republican big oil and gas company cronies….
“Democrats have a common-sense plan to help bring down skyrocketing gas prices by cracking down on price gouging, rolling back the billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies, tax breaks and royalty relief given to big oil and gas companies, and increasing production of alternative fuels.”
That was when gas was at $2.91 a gallon. Well, gas is currently at $4.08 just 18 months into the Democrat control of Congress. There are many reasons why gas is high, the price of oil being one reason, but in the world of American politics, one takes credit when times are good, but also gets blamed when times are bad.
So, where are the Republicans hammering the Dems on this broken campaign pledge? Not only do Republicans have a definite edge on the drilling solution, but using the Dems own words against them would help to unify the RNC’s voice nationally on this issue: “Can we afford another Democrat Congress?” and so forth. The press isn’t going to call the Dems out on this issue so we have to do it — this is finally an issue that the Republicans poll better than Dems this year!
Posted in Anything Else, Culture, Election 2008, Media Bias, Politics | Tagged: Democrats, high gas prices, Nancy Pelosi, oil drilling, Republicans, RNC | 2 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 26, 2008
The Supreme Court has obviously been a little bipolar lately… who am I kidding? Justice Kennedy wants to be the powerful/swing justice on the court as he voted today with the Four Good Justices to uphold the Second Amendment.
It was a Scalia v. Stevens battle, with Scalia happily on the winning side.
Justice Antonin Scalia wrote a lucid and detailed opinion for the majority (pdf — start on page four for Scalia’s view) where he addresses the original intent of the Founder’s views on individual gun ownership, referring to Jefferson, Madison and others in his opinion. It’s cited full of British and American history as to the meaning of the Founder’s intentions, SCOTUS precedent, and the DC law itself. It is a breath of fresh air.
The buzz out there is not that SCOTUS actually upheld the Constitution (which lately is pretty amazing), but that four justices saw no need to uphold over 216 years of precedent on the principle of individual gun rights! If this is an indication of where things are going on this court, 2008 will sadly be a critical election to decide the political nature of our supposedly non-political branch.
Pic is Archibald Willard’s painting “Spirit of ’76.”
Posted in Culture, Election 2008, Judicial Watch, Politics | Tagged: Anthony Kennedy, Antonin Scalia, Archibald Willard, Gun Rights, James Madison, SCOTUS, Second Amendment, Spirit of 76, Stephen Breyer, Thomas Jefferson | 12 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 25, 2008
The Supreme Court is getting out of control and the libs on the Court are certainly not making many friends lately. What’s next I wonder?
In the wake of pronouncing that al Qaeda has more rights than Nazis did, and with 42 states having passed anti-Kelo laws, the Supreme Court voted 5-4 that the death penalty is off-limits for child rapists, unless of course, the child’s death results. I’ll let you guess who voted to uphold Louisiana’s law allowing the death penalty for child rapists in this blatant act of judicial legislation.
All the Eighth Amendment “cruel and unusual” banter from Justice Kennedy (alas, a Reagan appointee gone loopy), doesn’t really take into account the effects on the victim. Here’s what Justice Alito had to say about this ruling in his dissent:
“[Alito] lament[ed] that the majority had ruled out executing someone for raping a child ‘no matter how young the child, no matter how many times the child is raped, no matter how many children the perpetrator rapes, no matter how sadistic the crime, no matter how much physical or psychological trauma is inflicted, and no matter how heinous the perpetrator’s prior criminal record may be.’”
Maybe Justice Kennedy thought that the perp, Patrick Kennedy (no joke), was a relative or someone he knew. Who knows? Liberals on the court since the 1950s have seen the perps as the one’s potentially hurt by laws, not their victims so much. I’m just waiting for the political branches of our government to assert themselves against the poorly devised judicial dictates from this court over the last few years.
Posted in Blogroll, Culture, Election 2008, Judicial Watch, Politics, War on Terror | Tagged: Al Qaeda, Anthony Kennedy, Eighth Amendment, Kelo, Nazi, Patrick Kennedy, Reagan, Samuel Alito, SCOTUS, Supreme Court | 7 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 24, 2008
Obama can throw his “typical white” racist grandma under the bus and the LA Times calls it his Abraham Lincoln moment. That’s OK. It’s being frank about race, but the microscope surrounding Don Imus has unearthed another controversial racial comment that is resulting in a new round of haranguing against the popular radio shock-jock.
Here’s the radio excerpt in question:
Imus says that this was taken out of context and that he was defending the NFL’s Pacman Jones, inferring that Pacman was being picked on the police for being black. Either way one looks at it, this isn’t as flagrant as his comments on the Rutgers Women’s Basketball team back in April 2007, which cost him his job.
However, Imus has to know that there are some out there looking for any gaffe of slip-up so they can take Imus down for good and keep racial issues in the headlines during this election year.
Posted in Anything Else, Culture, Election 2008, Media Bias, Politics | Tagged: Abraham Lincoln, Adam Jones, Barack Obama, Don Imus, Pacman Jones, racism, Rutgers Women's Basketball | 3 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 23, 2008
John McCain, if elected President, would offer a $300 million prize for any company or individual that produces a car battery which leapfrogs over the current wimpy ones on the market. I like the approach. Here’s my take:
Telling us that in order to eventually get away from gas, the government will encourage innovation by giving a huge financial reward for your product in a time of great need is great. It was one of the few things I really liked about Mike Huckabee’s approach which John McCain has adopted. Using the power of American innovation, the collective mind of the American people, and the free market, McCain’s idea will encourage us to get positively involved in the process on a national level, rather than keeping us as a powerless spectator wincing at the whims of almighty Washington dictates of conservation or diminution (you know, Jimmah Carter’s long-underpants speeches during the cold winters of 1977-78).
Telling us that gas prices will go up forever, so we must suck it up and wait around for a magic alternative energy source while we all suffer in the interim is a negative way of looking at things, and the solution the Dems have awaiting us if we become an Obama Nation this Fall. No real answers, just accusations and more of the same.
I love capitalism. I also think that people are best motivated when positive reinforcement is used, and the best ideas arise from necessity, competition, and incentives to solve problems — I’m a conservative, hence I’m an optimist at heart.
In my opinion, if government must get involved in something it should be in one of these four areas: defense, infrastructure, education and technology (DIET for short). McCain’s proposal is a market-oriented way that the government is helping on the technology front. I have no problem with contests of this sort. In addition, I think McCain should also add that the designer of the super-battery be given sole rights to the patent for at least two decades to ensure a huge future cash windfall for the designer.
Posted in Culture, Election 2008, Politics | Tagged: capitalism, conservative, Jimmy Carter, John McCain, Mike Huckabee, Obama Nation | 6 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 22, 2008
The Obama campaign is preemptively trying to use the race issue to associate those Republicans who think he’s too inexperienced to become President with those who would use his “funny name” and his color against him.
Politics as usual from “Mr. Hope and Change” once again. Remember this one:
H/T Hot Air.
Posted in Blogroll, Culture, Election 2008, Politics | Tagged: Barack Obama, Hope and Change, Hot Air | 3 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 22, 2008
Finally a journalist who has some sense of historical perspective beyond the contemporary headlines! Andrew Roberts wrote this article* comparing George W. Bush to another heavily maligned US president in his day, Harry S Truman.
I think the comparison may stand in historical perspective. Harry Truman was deeply disliked by the American people in 1952, blamed for an unpopular war, and navigating through a tough economic transition after World War II. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, Truman was still viewed poorly: aside from the disastrous Korean stalemate, his “Fair Deal” fell flat, Congress kept flipping from Dem to Republican on him, Truman’s administration was constantly dogged for having real communist spies all over it, etc. But no one remembers much of that through the lens of history, since the basic tenants of Truman’s Cold War policies were used by all subsequent administrations in a truly effective way until 1991.
Today, he’s viewed by members of both parties as a model President, even in the top five to some experts and certainly in the top 10 to others! Even She Who Must Not Be Named once said that we need another Harry Truman — one who will make good decisions in the face of tough choices or being unpopular.
In a sense, we do in George W. Bush. As Roberts’ article explains, a President is usually remembered in history for one or two things. In 2030, Bush will not be remembered for Valerie Plame or Katrina or the “recession.” Once the contemporary politics has moved on, he’ll most likely be remembered for Iraq, Afghanistan, and for keeping America safe for the last 7 1/2 years of his Administration following 9/11. Or at least Bush hopes so.
Pic from MIT.
* — Roberts, writing for a British paper, mixes up Warren Harding with Herbert Hoover initially. As an historian this kind of bothers me, but his larger point still stands (plus he’s quoting from a left-wing news source, and you know loosely the Left uses history!)
Posted in Election 2008, Media Bias, Politics, Russia, The Iraq Front, War on Terror | Tagged: 9/11, Afghanistan, Andrew Roberts, Cold War, Communism, Fair Deal, George W. Bush, Harry S Truman, Herbert Hoover, Iraq War, Katrina, Korean War, She Who Must Not Be Named, Valerie Plame, War on Terror, Warren Harding | 5 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 21, 2008
A new antenatal test currently in trial stages can indicate whether or not a couple is going to have a child with Down’s Syndrome at about the seventh week of gestation. Some believe this would definitely lead to increased abortions of those children.
We’re beginning to enter that world we all talked about 10-15 years ago when we asked “what if” science could find out things like this for the benefit of new parents before the child is born, or even change characteristics to create cafe-style children looking like we want them to, etc. We’re not at the latter point yet, but probably will be within our lifetime.
Yet, in this particular scenario (and most other ones of this nature) the child gets left behind. It’s Down’s today, but what if tomorrow it is homosexuality or susceptiblility to multiple sclerosis or even (to some vein parents) an unwanted recessive eye color? Isn’t this what the Nazis tried to do — weed out the weak in society for the strength and convenience of the living?
Yet, shouldn’t the parents know everything they can about the health of their child before he or she is born? It’s a potentially slippery slope when we start gauging the value of a child before he or she has a chance to be born if that means terminating those who are deemed weak or inconvenient after a couple initially had the intent to keep the child.
Posted in Anything Else, Culture, Religion | Tagged: abortion, antenatal tests, Down's Syndrome, Nazi | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ryan on June 19, 2008
Coldplay’s new album Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends debuted in America Tuesday and will predictably become a huge hit. However, there is a potential plagiarism charge levied against the British superband. Apparently the new Coldplay single (and title track) sounds a lot like the American band Creaky Boards song “The Songs I Didn’t Write.”
I was once in a college band and know the controversies which arise from bands in the same genre swiping this or that lick or riff from other bands. My band was innocent of that stuff because we weren’t trying to be too contemporary (we sounded like Tool meets Rush when at the time everyone wanted to sound like 311), but many bands in the area which had a very similar sound always used to complain about this band or that band stealing their music. It was very tough to watch sometimes.
In truth, copyrighted material like a song must be intentionally lifted and the notes/arrangement must be nearly identical to have a case in court, otherwise Paul and Ringo have quite a case against Oasis. Vanilla Ice’s swipe of “Under Pressure” was a sampling he gave credit to but also took without permission, hence legal issues arose. I think the Creaky Boards song and the Coldplay tune are somewhat similar, but Creaky Boards doesn’t have a case in my opinion since they two songs have different arrangements and lyrics. They are somewhat similar, but not the same.
Hats off to Creaky Boards, though! This is a great way to get one’s band in the news– all publicity is good publicity in music and the arts when one’s trying to break through.
Posted in Anything Else, Pop Culture | Tagged: 311, Coldplay, Creaky Boards, Oasis, Paul and Ringo, Queen, Rush, The Songs I Didn't Write, Tool, Vanilla Ice, Viva la Vida | 2 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 19, 2008
Obama on “FOX News Sunday,” April 27, 2008, discussing the issue public financing:
Obama today. He does this kind of thing a lot.
This makes Obama and Richard Nixon the only two Presidential candidates since Watergate to fund their campaigns totally with unlimited private funds. Economically, it’s a smart move by Obama, but politically it is a very high-profile flip-flop.
Posted in Election 2008, Media Bias, Politics | Tagged: Barack Obama, Campaign Finance, Richard Nixon, Watergate | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ryan on June 18, 2008
In an Obama Nation, those traditional Muslim headscarves (hijabs) that some women wear will not be allowed in photo-ops. At least that’s what happened in Detroit on Monday!
The Obama camp apologized for what two of his campaign’s volunteers did on Monday by asking two women with hijabs to get off the stage. Both volunteers gave different excuses: a heightened fear of Muslims by Americans, versus just making sure no one with headscarves or baseball caps were on stage for security reasons! I know Obama is very touchy about his middle name (Hussein), so I’m not convinced that these incidents were done accidentally or without any wink-wink/nudge-nudges.
Imagine what the MSM would do if John McCain’s Republican volunteers in two separate instances at a rally asked Muslims to remove their hijabs or get off the stage and out of the cameras? I wonder how much play that would have gotten in the MSM? I think I know the answer to that — and we wouldn’t have waited until Wednesday to hear about this incident either.
Posted in Culture, Election 2008, Media Bias, Politics, Religion, War on Terror | Tagged: Barack Hussein Obama, Detroit, hijab, John McCain, MSM, Muslims, Obamanation | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Mike on June 17, 2008
The basketball world was restored to normal earlier tonight when the Boston Celtics crushed the hated Los Angeles Lakers 131-92 to win their record 17th NBA World Championship. These finals were special for the three authors of this website as we grew up in New England watching our Celtics battle with the Lakers for the title almost every year. It is even more special for the generation before us who witnessed the Celtics not only battling for the title every year, but winning it. Heck, the Celtics eightpeated from 1959-1966.
Unfortunately the last two decades have not been nearly as kind to Celtics fans. After winning the Championship in 1986, the Celtics future superstar, Len Bias, died of a cocaine overdose days after being drafted. The following year, the Celtics fell to the Lakers in the finals. Then came the the sharp and rapid decline into mediocrity. There were some playoff appearances during that time, but never any real hope. What was almost as painful was witnessing the rival Lakers win Championships while our team was on the sidelines. The last two decades have not been easy.
Tonight, the wait is over and basketball is the way it ought to be. The Celtics are on top of the world, and they got there by humiliating the Lakers.
For the next week, our site will be green in honor of the Champions.
Posted in Sports | Tagged: 17 World Champiosnhips, Boston Celtics, Los Angeles Lakers, NBA Finals, World Champion Boston Celtics | 3 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 17, 2008
Usually a Presidential candidate who has just received their party’s nomination gets a traditional “bounce” in the polls in the weeks following their success.
However, Obama has not received such a bounce: the same bounce that had Mondale up by 20 in 1984 and Dukakis up by 17 in 1988. The bounce may be delayed, happening after the DNC in Denver this summer, but Democrats have usually jumped far ahead of Republicans at this point. Or, using the same example of 1984 and 1988 trouncing of those candidates, maybe the polls have gotten better and these numbers will hold through the Fall.
Obama and McCain are still within the margin of error in many polls nowadays, and Obama is still having trouble getting many SWMNBN supporters two weeks after she suspended her campaign. Even the Lefties at ABC see this as a problem.
It’s early, but McCain has an opportunity here in my opinion: a campaign which has so much internal party mending to do and even defends habeas corpus for Bin Laden is definitely not going to get a bounce from the American electorate.
Posted in Election 2008, Media Bias, Politics, War on Terror | Tagged: ABC News, Barack Obama, Denver, habeas corpus, John McCain, Michael Dukakis, Osama Bin Laden, She Who Must Not Be Named, Walter Mondale | 2 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 16, 2008
The Anglican Church is in crisis. Britons are moving away from it in droves, many of whom are dropping religion altogether or becoming Roman Catholics, like former British Prime Minister Tony Blair (I bet he has private health insurance too!).
The recent dilemma wreaking havoc over the Anglican Church is what to do about homosexuals. Many traditionalists and conservatives are angry by the Church’s lurch to the Left in recent years. Ordaining female priests and having openly gay ministers were vexing enough for the old school crowd, but last month two gay priests married each other in a “blessing ceremony” that went beyond anything sanctioned by the Church before and is also in open defiance of Anglican guidelines.
Some conservative clergy are even threatening a worldwide split over this issue. I believe it is an important issue. Religion is not supposed to reflect the hip new headlines and trends, it’s supposed to be a spiritual road map to help us better understand the depth of our soul. If your beliefs don’t mesh with a particular religion, join a new one, or try going Unitarian or Taoist. But witnessing one’s own religion change its core beliefs on an issue based on the social whims of the last three decades, which seek to change the face of a church approaching its 500th birthday should be vexing.
Go to the polls and change government policy, but leave religion out of this kind of secular social engineering. Or, from another angle, keep it up, Anglicans, and you’ll doubtlessly add more to the ranks of my Catholic faith!
Posted in Culture, Europe, Pop Culture, Religion, UK Politics | Tagged: Anglican Church, Gay Marriage, Roman Catholic, Taoist, Tony Blair, Unitarian | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ryan on June 15, 2008
As we all know author, political commentator, and moderator of NBC’s popular Meet the Press, Tim Russert, died on Friday from a heart attack while at work, recording voice-overs for today’s wow.
This morning NBC honored him by having today’s Meet the Press be about him, beginning the show with Russert’s chair, empty. Then, Tom Brokaw moderated a cast of those who were there to remember him: historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, the political odd-couple of Mary Matalin and James Carville, Gwen Ifill, Mike Barnicle, Maria Shriver and others, along with numerous highlights of past shows.
I liked Tim Russert. I always thought he tried to be objective. He definitely had favorites and his political roundtables were always loaded with Libs. But, he had class, tried to get politicians a little uncomfortable by using their own words against them, and wrote two books Big Russ and Me and Wisdom of Our Fathers, about his respect and admiration for his father. Poignant, that today is Father’s Day as Tim leaves behind a son, Luke who recently graduated from Boston College, and a wife of 25 years, Maureen.
Posted in Culture, Media Bias, Politics | Tagged: Big Russ and Me, Doris Kearns Goodwin, Father's Day, Gwen Ifill, James Carville, Luke Russert, Maria Shriver, Mary Matalin, Maureen Orth, Meet the Press, Mike Barnicle, Tim Russert, Tom Brokaw, Wisdom of Our Fathers | 1 Comment »
Posted by Mike on June 15, 2008
Kudos to Ireland for rejecting the EU Constitution in Thursday’s referendum. Although the rejected document was actually titled the “Lisbon Treaty,” voters realized that it was nothing more than the previously-rejected Constitution under a different name. How do we know this? Angela Merkel admitted it last year.
The main question on everyone’s mind at this point is whether EU proponents will find a way to implement their treaty over the objections of their citizens. I’m more interested in Gordon Brown’s position. During the last General Election, the Labour Party promised voters that the UK would not implement the EU Constitution without first obtaining the people’s approval in a referendum. Sensing his country’s opposition to the treaty, Brown ignored his party’s promise and rammed the Lisbon Treaty (EU Constitution) through Parliament without holding a referendum. Thankfully and ironically, the Irish saved British sovereignty for the time being.
Brown has already paid an enormous political price for his arrogance on this issue (and many others). Despite this, he is now desperately searching for some other way of forcing this Constitution upon his unwilling country. Let’s just hope the Cameron’s Conservatives can win the next General Election occurs before this abomination is implemented
Posted in Europe, Politics, UK Politics | Tagged: Angela Merkel, Conservative Party, David Cameron, EU Constitution, Gordon Brown, Ireland, Labour Party, Lisbon Treaty, UK Politics | 2 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 15, 2008
According to this Politico story, historians (mostly liberal ones rooting for Obama I sure) give McCain a small chance of winning in the Fall. (The rest of this post may seem like a little inside baseball if you’re not an historian.)
One historian compared this election to 1932, when FDR trounced Hoover. Another compared it to the 1980 thumping of Jimmy Carter or Ike’s 1952 smackdown of Adlai Stevenson. Some, more reasonable historians have related this to 1968, but on both ends: McCain as Humphrey, tied too closely to the party in power, as well as McCain as Nixon, taking advantage of a Democrat Party in total disarray. Some cite historical cycles, which I can see hinders McCain in this case, and that those candidates tied to incumbent party’s popularity go against McCain in this cycle.
The article falls flat for me when it states that “the Democratic-controlled Congress is nearly as unpopular as the president.” Um… not quite: the Democrat-controlled Congress is considerably LESS popular than Bush, by nearly half. Remember, McCain is not an incumbent, and in the last non-incumbent race (1952) the war-hero trounced the intellectual and articulate liberal. Plus, like Richard Nixon in 1968, everyone knows McCain, and unlike Jimmy Carter in 1976, the more we know about Obama, the more he seems like more of the same — he’s not a refreshing outsider like Carter seemed, rather Obama’s an unaccomplished political opportunist who occasionally doesn’t even know who his friends are.
I agree with the premise that McCain’s got a tough road, but so does Obama in my opinion: we are at war, Obama is too inexperienced, has a cowardly voting record, and he’s not very bright when pushed on the issues.
Posted in Election 2008, Media Bias, Politics, The Iraq Front, War on Terror | Tagged: Adlai Stevenson, Barack Obama, FDR, George W. Bush, Hubert Humphrey, Ike, Jimmy Carter, John McCain, Richard Nixon | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ryan on June 15, 2008
In a stunning defeat for proponents of the latest take on a future European Union Treaty, Irish voters rejected the Lisbon Treaty in a referendum Thursday, which has sent shockwaves throughout the continent and may derail this latest effort at union. While other nations have ratified this treaty, Ireland was the only country thus far that has actually let the people vote, rather than legislators or executives.
The Lisbon Treaty is highly complex, bureaucratic, cold, and top-heavy with confusing voter rules and qualifications. Simply, it’s typically European at a cool 271 pages! Those in Ireland who voted against the Treaty said it was too complex and too alienating. And they’re right. It’s huge, cumbersome, and easily has the capacity to squash local rights once approved by all and implemented. The Irish people were simply voting in their self-interest.
Any American can pick up the American Constitution and, though the language has oldened, can make pretty good sense of it: three co-equal branches with enumerated powers, rules about statehood and state interaction, an amendment process with 27 Amendments tacked onto the end. True, it’s purposely vague and broad in many spots, but the Founders left it to elected and appointed officials to figure out the details later through a republican/democratic process. With small, still readable writing one can fit the entire document and its Amendments on one 8 1/2 by 11 sheet of paper (front and back, of course).
Oh, and it’s lasted nearly 221 years, surviving a Civil War and the international upheavals of the mid-20th Century. Maybe Europe can learn something from America on the issue of individual rights and responsive government. Maybe then the people will rally around it, rather than bureaucrats who seemingly just want a new way to guarantee they keep their jobs at the end of the process.
Posted in Europe, Politics | Tagged: Amendments, Constitution, European Union, Ireland, Lisbon Treaty | 2 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 12, 2008
And the Constitution gets its day on the toilet paper roll! The Supreme Court was about as off-base and dangerous today as as they were in Dred Scott. POWs held at Gitmo will, for the first time in our history, be allowed to have access to civilian US courts during wartime.
These are five Supreme Court Justices that have seriously endangered the American people today: John Paul Stevens, Stephen Breyer, David Souter, Anthony Kennedy, and Ruth “Biddy” Ginsberg.
These are four Supreme Court Justices still believe in the worth of the Executive and Legislative Branch to protect the American people during wartime: Chief Justice John Roberts, Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, and Samuel Alito.
Never in our 232 year history has the American government under either the Articles of Confederation or the Constitution has allowed foreign combatants held overseas access to civilian courts during wartime… until today. It is not just a defeat of the Bush Administration, but also for Congress, national security and by extension the American people.
Why should habeas corpus apply to non-Americans during wartime on those who tried to kill Americans and were taken on the battlefield? This is a horribly dangerous precedent — we didn’t even allow Nazis that privilege!!! What if some of the evidence against the terrorists is classified or involved in ongoing intelligence operations? Don’t the detainees have the right to have that evidence used or brought up in open court? The slippery slope potential is uncanny and not in our best interest.
President Bush is in a position to make a magnanimous gesture for the sake of posterity and NOT enforce this ruling under his watch. Yet, he will abide and we will suffer in the long-run. Congress passed and the President signed the current law into effect in 2006, clarifying the law as the Supreme Court asked them too. This is an example of “legislation from the bench” if anything ever was. In the words of Justice Scalia: “The Nation will regret what the Court has done today.”
Posted in Culture, Election 2008, Judicial Watch, Politics, War on Terror | Tagged: Anthony Kennedy, Antonin Scalia, Articles of Confederation, Clarence Thomas, David Souter, habeas corpus, John Paul Stevens, John Roberts, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Samuel Alito, Stephen Breyer, Supreme Court | 13 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 11, 2008
John “F’in” Kerry and the Obama campaign are pouncing on John McCain’s statement this morning on the Today Show, calling McCain “out of touch” and “confused” with his own stated opinions. The above video clip shows you what McCain really said, and this link shows how the Dems reacted to it.
Make up your own mind, but in my mind this is on par with the “100 years” comment that is still occasionally being taken out of context by the Left. It’s ridiculous and it won’t work against candidate McCain. However, McCain himself sometimes backs into these moments that can be taken out of context, but to his credit his campaign fought back immediately.
Posted in Election 2008, Media Bias, Politics, The Iraq Front | Tagged: Barack Obama, John Kerry, John McCain, Today Show | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ryan on June 10, 2008
Score one for capitalism today, as the Dem’s “windfall profits” tax bill couldn’t get the sixty votes needed for cloture. Hence, the bill is dead for now. This populist, anti-capitalist proposal underscores the success Dems have had in deflecting the issue of energy prices solely onto the producers, not the regulators. Congress won’t let them drill, therefore Congress affects supply. Talk to Adam Smith — he knows what’s up when it comes to the relationship between supply, demand and price. Fourth graders know this concept too, yet the Dems somehow don’t.
And our future fearless leaders, both McCain and Obama , decided that they were not going to participate in today’s important vote. Truly a profile in courage on both sides. McCain misses a huge opportunity if he and the Republicans don’t jump on this issue quickly, loudly and consistently.
Posted in Election 2008, Politics | Tagged: Adam Smith, Barack Obama, Congress, Democrats, John McCain, Republicans, supply and demand, Windfall Profits Tax | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ryan on June 9, 2008
Famous New York Giants Defensive End Michael Strahan decided to retire after fifteen straight seasons, seven of which were Pro Bowl seasons. After winning his first Super Bowl title after being an important part of the Giant’s victory over the New England Patriots.
I liked Michael Strahan. He was a great player and had a sense of humor that translated well to advertising and public relations. He was one of the few high-profile members of NY Giants who I actually liked. Plus, like John Elway, he’s decided to retire while on top, not after a series of failed seasons. Ultimately, if you can do it, this way is the better way to go.
Posted in Sports | Tagged: defensive end, John Elway, Michael Strahan, New England Patriots, New York Giants, Pro Bowl, Super Bowl XLII | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ryan on June 8, 2008
Word came out about a decision by the Montgomery County Public School Council, in Maryland, that they will support a textbook that “adjusts” the definition of jihad and shariah law in order to give a more positive view of Islam to their middle and high school students in order to “avoid inconvenient truths.”
Take this pill, young ones, it’s only history class. No need to think or understand… Yay! Now everyone’s happy!
However, “jihad” is not only a personal, inward struggle, but also a call for the destruction of those who threaten Islam. We do our students a huge disservice if we ostensibly lie to them by purposely omitting the whole, true, modern-day interpretations of jihad. Our students will not fully be able to grasp why there are millions of people in this world who want to kill them for just being them. I bet these same books do a number on Christians during the Crusades (if the Crusades are even mentioned!).
Plus my students throughout the years love a little controversy — it actually makes history worth learning to them and gets them thinking in more depth! Yet “learning” and “thought” are apparently not going on anymore in Montgomery County.
Posted in Culture, Politics, Religion, War on Terror | Tagged: jihad, jihadists, Montgomery County, shariah law | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ryan on June 7, 2008
Only 45 minutes late to her concession speech (not bad for that family), She Who Must Not Be Named graciously accepted defeat and told her cronies to support Barack Obama. The crowd was sad, but highly enthused throughout the speech. However, every single time she brought up how she will support the Empty Suit, a good amount of her throng booed! Many actuallyand very audibly booed the thought of helping Obama! She looked into the crowd with disgust for a brief moment, but deep down we know she was with them. Her speech was full of self-congratulation and thinly disguised remorse.
So, there are two signs that we may not be stepping nearer to the apocalypse this year: SWMNBN is out, and her supporters are sour on Obama!
Pic from PR Fitness and Sports blog.
Posted in Culture, Election 2008, Politics | Tagged: Barack Obama, She Who Must Not Be Named | 2 Comments »
Posted by Ryan on June 6, 2008
While the Boston Celtics won an exciting Game 1 NBA Finals victory over the LA Lakers last night 98-88, the big game was not the only one in town that has generated some news.
During the Boston Red Sox game against the upstart Tampa Bay (Devil) Rays last night, the BoSox Center Fielder Coco Crisp (I think I used to have that for breakfast as a kid) was struck by an errant pitch from the Rays’ James Shields, causing Coco to charge the mound and the dugouts to empty. The ensuing brawl got three players ejected.
Brawls are not unusual in baseball from time to time, but when later in the game (an eventual 7-1 rout of the Rays to put the BoSox at the head of the division) Manny Ramirez struck Kevin Youkilis in the dugout! What’s going on over in Beantown? You guys are in first! Relax, you’re playing until September at least.
Posted in Sports | Tagged: Beantown, Boston Celtics, Boston Red Sox, Coco Crisp, James Shields, Kevin Youkilis, Los Angeles Lakers, Manny Ramirez, Tampa Bay Rays | 1 Comment »