Saturday, June 04, 2011

DRAMA QUEEN. Lionel Chetwynd, a rightwing Hollywood martyr known mainly these days for his videos with Roger L. Simon, has written an indignant Letter of Resignation from some group you never heard of (the Steering Committee of The Caucus for Producers, Writers & Directors) to protest the anti-conservative bigotry of some guy you never heard of (Vin Di Bona), which he learned about from Ben Shapiro's book about how Sesame Street is trying to turn our children into socialists.

Whatever normal people may think of this slap-fight, Chetwynd takes it very, very seriously:
Shame on all of them. Their sickness is an infection that belongs in Europe of the 1930s.
It's like a beer-hall putsch, only with cocaine.
This is a time of inflamed political confrontation, evoking Bleeding Kansas of the 1850’s or even the Civil War itself.
In this reading, Chetwynd is Topsy and Obama is Simon Legree.
I realize, now, the enormous special obstacles put in my path by my supposed colleagues, obstacles that over the years made earning a living or a quiet pursuit of my trade so unusually onerous, were not a matter of political difference; they were a declaration of my unworthiness to be one of them. The rejection was not of my ideas, but of my person.
Now that I can believe.

Next up: How the failure of Hollyweird liberals to cast Kelsey Grammer as Batman is Birkenau all over again. (h/t Dan Coyle)

Friday, June 03, 2011

SHORTER DOROTHY RABINOWITZ: All that stuff we've been saying about the deficit and big government? Everyone knows that's bullshit. So we have to start talking to voters about something they really care about: Foreign policy.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

TODAY IN ANTHONY WEINER PENIS NEWS. The hunt for new angles on Anthony Weiner's Penis proceeds apace. David K. Li has a bold approach in the New York Post -- what about Huma Abedin? "Weiner's Unflappable Wife Finally Gets Flapped," reads the headline. Wow, someone talked to her? Here's what it actually means:
Weiner said yesterday his beautiful spouse - a longtime aide to now-Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton - doesn't understand what all the fuss is about.

"She's seen an awful lot," Weiner told MSNBC.

"But I won't mind telling you that even for someone that went through the Clinton years, this has been a befuddling experience."
It doesn't seem to have slowed her down much, but never mind; Eric Cantor has pretended to care about what she's feeling, and soon all across the internet rightbloggers will celebrate her flapping with fapping.

At Patterico, Aaron Worthing denounces Weiner for allowing himself and Ms. Abedin to be married by Bill Clinton in 2010:
But how is Clinton’s serial violations of his wedding vows irrelevant in the context of marriage? Doesn’t it make a mockery of the wedding itself to have a famous serial adulterer standing up there and say:
Anthony Weiner, do you take Huma Abedin to be your wedded wife to live together in marriage? Do you promise to love, comfort, honor and keep her for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, and forsaking all others, be faithful only to her so long as you both shall live?
(Emphasis added.) Do you want to be at a wedding where you are concerned that the officiant might hit on the bride and can’t be trusted alone with the bridesmaids? Do you want the officiant to question what the meaning of the word “faithful” is, or if a certain sex act is cheating?... It is a bizarre act of disrespect for the institution of marriage to have a man with Bill Clinton’s character to officiate over one.
Further, we have it on the authority of Flopping Aces that "Bill Clinton, the old horn dog was infatuated with Abedin." Next someone will denounce Weiner's ancestors for choosing to call themselves "Weiner," abandoning the traditional chastity of surnames.

Also, one of Weiner's Twitter correspondents is a porn star, which means Weiner watches porn. I hope he's not following @Helen_Mirren; that would constitute a pattern.

This has been Today in Anthony Weiner Penis News.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

RACE TO THE BOTTOM. Michael Potemra on populism:
So with the Palin-Trump summit meeting, we got an indication of who she is — and, I hasten to add, it’s not only a negative indication, even for those of us who are unimpressed with Trump. Sure, on the negative side, she’s saying, I’m impressed with Donald Trump. Not a good sign in a potential president. But, on the positive side, she’s saying, Yeah, I’m impressed with Donald Trump — you got a problem with that, Mr. East Coast MSM Intellectual? And that, I think, shows a level of comfort with herself that we would like a president to have.
In other words, Palin's sumptuously-covered meeting with the buffoon Trump is good because it reaffirms Palin's contempt for the media and comfort with herself. This is so dumb I thought at first Jonah Goldberg had written it. Then I found, to my astonishment, that Potemra was answering a relatively innocuous Goldberg post on the subject. He out-Goldberged Goldberg! Jonah, watch your back.

UPDATE. The one time I'm nice to Goldberg, commenter Froley has to spoil it -- regarding Goldberg's desire for an NRO Bus Tour, Froley writes, "he could easily waddle into the Ken Kesey role and travel the country by bus (appropriately named 'Farter') with his band of less than merry NRO pranksters -- LSD and marijuana replaced by Cheetos and Mountain Dew." WE BLEW IT!
I’m not for profiling people on the color of their skin, or on their religion, but I would take into account where they’ve been traveling and perhaps, you might have to indirectly take into account whether or not they’ve been going to radical political speeches by religious leaders. It wouldn’t be that they are Islamic. But if someone is attending speeches from someone who is promoting the violent overthrow of our government, that’s really an offense that we should be going after — they should be deported or put in prison.
Oddly, there's nothing about this at Reason, Rand Paul's hometown paper. Though there you can find a post by Nick Gillespie about Reason's Let's Destroy Social Security poll, and how the poor people they inexplicably included in their sample skewed the results, even though Gillespie keeps telling them it's for their own good:
I realize that such a shift entails a lot of technical issues but the idea that the government should operate an inefficient redistributive program that basically takes from relatively poor and young people to give to relatively wealthy seniors strikes me as plain awful.
A libertarian affecting sympathy for the parasitic sheeple! Reminds me of the courtly manners of Bluebeard. I'm beginning to think libertarianism is just a stealth marketing campaign for feudalism.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

PAST IS PROLOGUE. The Michelle Obama "Whitey" Tape was one of the more absurd frauds of the 2008 election season. The alleged bombshell was never produced, and over time most of us -- aside from Larry Johnson and Rick-Rollers -- forgot about it.

Now (h/t Media Matters) a World Net Daily column by Mychal Massie gives the Whitey Tape a revival:
A tape that was reportedly filmed in 2004 during the Rainbow/Push Coalition Conference at Jeremiah Wright's Trinity United Church has mysteriously disappeared from public view. The tape allegedly showed Michelle Obama hysterically ranting about "Whiteys" and savagely attacking Bill Clinton as responsible for African genocide. The wife of Louis Farrakhan was one of the honored guests.
This is the cream of the "Questions Remain" jest -- every bit of bullshit you've ever heard from these guys, no matter how loony, remains in their armory, and occasionally they'll even try to use it. After a while even those of us with trusting natures grow jaded. So if you wonder why people are skeptical of their claims about Weiner, think about Whitey.
THE TV IS SENDING HIM SECRET MESSAGES. Ben Shapiro has a book out about how TV is trying to turn you Red:
Look at Friends. Great show. Well-written. Well-acted. Funny. Bet you didn’t think it was political per se. But not only did the show feature a lesbian wedding during its first season, an out-of-wedlock pregnancy, and on-screen fights over condoms, the show promoted the substitution of friends for family as moral guides and sources of responsibility. Marta Kauffman told me that she was trying to use the show as a vehicle for acting out “that time in your life … when your friends are your family.” Kauffman actually got nastier than that...
Also, a producer allegedly refused to accept Shapiro's spec script because "he would never work with someone of my political persuasion." If only Aaron Spelling were still alive!

Shapiro's making author rounds and told the New York Post that Sesame Street is a communist plot.
'Sesame Street' tried to tackle divorce, tackle 'peaceful conflict resolution' in the aftermath of 9/11, and had Neil Patrick Harris [a gay actor] on the show, playing the subtly named "fairy shoeperson."
He also complains about a 2007 Sesame Street episode that made fun of Fox News (and other news networks without the same elaborately constructed victim status). I like to think Post reporter Cynthia R. Fagen was having a bit of fun with this button:
And Shapiro said one of the "Happy Days" writers admitted to him that the show "had a whole subtext" of attacking the Vietnam War.

"If you really look for it, you can find it," the writer says.
I wonder if there's anything in there about how Wide World of Sports was propaganda for the U.N. Or if Shapiro interviewed Mark McLeod.

UPDATE. Comments are delightful, and remind me to remind you of Shapiro's other adventures in the Lively Arts: In 2009 he told us that "Since 1948, Israeli film has been heavily focused on undermining Israelis’ patriotism – and Israelis have bought into it," which explains the persistence of Bibi Netanyahu, and compared Wanda Sykes' performance at the White House Correspondents Dinner to "Richard Pryor speaking at a White House Correspondents Dinner for JFK and failing to mention the civil rights movement."

Shapiro's analytical skills really shine, recalls Substance McGravitas, in his list of the 10 most overrated directors, topped by Alfred Hitchcock. His premise is, "[Hitchcock] was the Stephen King of the silver screen: he made films with great premises, but he never knew where to go from there"; he defends this mostly with adjectives.

A few readers note that Shapiro is a member of the board of Declaration Entertainment, which was considered here last July and has so far produced no features but lots of Bill Whittle videos.

Monday, May 30, 2011

WANK SQUAD. In my previous Weiner/Twitter post, I referred to the brethren's morbid interest in Gennette Cordova as a Monica Lewinsky dream-object. Speaking of which, Robert Stacy McCain:
Why didn’t I have any qualms about naming Ms. Cordova? First of all, her identity was never really “secret” to anyone who knew how to use Google. She was already being named at other blogs, and by people on Twitter.

Second, Ms. Cordova had obviously basked in the reflected glory of her online connection to the famous congressman, so that in April, after she Tweeted out that Weiner was her “boyfriend,” her friends teased her about her “crush” on him. Having welcomed such publicity in April, why should she shun publicity in May?
"Reflected glory"? Lots of us have internet crushes. For a particularly ripe example, see Ace O'Spades on Christina Hendricks:
I'd hit that with the berserker fury of a dozen Norsemen. I'd hit that so hard she'd sing the aaa-aaa chorus of The Immigrant Song.

I'd hit that I like I turned a Bag of Holding inside-out and dropped it into a Portable Hole.

Hitting that would fill me with such transcendental bliss...
Ugh, let's stop there. Spades has taken to calling Cordova "The Comely Coed" and mooning over her tits.

Elsewhere the brethren refer to Cordova as a "Swirly Young Thing" (?), "Femme Fatale," "buxom and willing to be interviewed Seattle woman," "busty Seattle co-ed," "DEMOCOMMIE SCUMBAG JOURALISM STUDENT IN THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF SEATTLE" (that's for those who like rough talk), etc.

"Gennette was not alone," Jim Hoft reveals, "Weiner’s Twitter Friends Include Pages of Young Lucious Fans." Some of his followers are attractive women, apparently; guy's a regular Bluebeard. Others are in a state of Questions Remain because Weiner has a teenage Twitter correspondent. McCain is following the teenager and calling her "Little Miss Potty-Mouth." Wonder how they'd react if Weiner and a bunch of other Democrats met one of his teenage fans face to face? ("'He came up to me, grabbed my hand, and shook it,' said Joe the Plumber. 'If I didn't know any better I would say he was 30 years old.'" Yeah, that's what they all say.)

In the realm of deep analysis, The American Jingoist* tells us Weiner's marriage is all a front:
As for Weiner, I was not fooled by his recent marriage to Huma Abedin, Hillary Clinton’s alleged paramour. I always thought it was a backdoor Democrat deal. The rumor mill was rife for years. Huma and Hillary were closerthanthis. Everybody knew.
You'll be hearing a lot more of this sort of thing as the boys remain hard on the case.

*UPDATE. Just realized that sham marriage story was only repurposed by The American Jingoist -- it originated with Atlas Pam.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

NEW VOICE COLUMN UP, about the rightblogger reaction to the NY-26 special election -- doubling down, basically, on the Coupons for Codgers Welfare plan, and nominating its author, Paul Ryan, for President. There's something wonderfully daffy about that. It's as if the French Socialist Party decided to run Dominique Strauss-Kahn anyway.

From the outtakes, some guy at RedState:
Democrats only come into power when they are successful at persuading people through tools of anger, envy, jealousy, bitterness, and the GOP doesn't fight back because they are afraid to and won't stand and fight for what they believe in. These tactics are exploitative of course but only serve to keep them in power and in the ultimate end, make our country something it was never intended to be: A Marxist state.
In the midst of a fight that is supposedly about how best to maintain a giant entitlement program, accusing the opposition of Marxism is a bit rich. Still, I wonder: why don't the Democrats try it? Just for grins, have Harry Reid come out one day and denounce Paul Ryan's Big Government share-the-wealth Welfare plan. It makes no sense, but that hasn't stopped anyone before, and maybe it'll make the bastards nervous.
PUMP IT UP UNTIL YOU CAN FEEL IT. I'll be interested to see what comes out of the Anthony Weiner case. (There's just no way of referring to it that doesn't sound suggestive, is there?) True, it's a motley crew that's after him -- including not only Breitbart but also Lee Stranahan, one of those Left-left-me types who thanks to Shirley Sherrod is outraged by Weinergate.

But they can't be wrong all the time. Take the National Enquirer -- they had John Edwards dead to rights, and their recent claim that Arnold Schwarzenegger used highway patrolmen to bring him girls seems to have been taken seriously by the state attorney general*, though I haven't heard any wingnuts applauding their Pulitzer-worthy reporting in this case. (The Enquirer may also be right about Seth Meyers dating Martha Stewart. That's another one the Lame Stream Media won't touch.)

So if Weiner did in fact send some girl a picture of his bulging underwear, that'll be weeks of hot copy and Republicans deluding themselves that they can grab his Congressional seat. (Wait'll the folks in Rockaway Beach hear about Paul Ryan's Coupons for Codgers Welfare program! They'll rise up against their Democratic plantation masters!)

And if Weiner did no such thing, we'll get a few days of can-you-prove-that-I-was-intentionally-misleading-you? and then on to the next bullshit. In other words, the usual.

UPDATE. From Datechguy:
So since Stacy is giving reporting lessons I took the liberty of calling congressman Weiner’s office, the recorded messaged referred me to a press number to call after hours. I called the number and the gentleman named Joe who answered claimed I had the wrong number so I called back the congressman’s office to confirm the number in question (it was correct) and called the press number again. It now goes directly to voice mail. I left my name and home and cell numbers at both locations, and I’ll let you know if anything pans out, but I found that reaction…interesting.
Yes, it's interesting that on Memorial Day weekend no one at Weiner's office was available to call back someone who calls himself Datechguy.

*UPDATE 2. In comments M. Bouffant informs me that the Cali AG isn't going after Schwarzenegger after all. I hope this doesn't sully the Enquirer's hard-won reputation.

UPDATE 3. From Stef at Daily Kos, the best summary of the case that this is all bullshit. Actually, maybe only the second-best, as the continued spinning by Robert Stacy McCain is pretty damning too, as it consists of the sort of thing you expect from these guys whenever they're cock-blocked: Irrelevant hair-splitting, and the desire to get Ms. Lewinsky (or whatever she's called in the latest dream-incarnation) alone in a room and really get to the bottom of this:
She is not — not — describing someone who “hacked” Weiner’s Twitter account, a subject about which she expresses no special knowledge.

Also, this: “There have never been any inappropriate exchanges between Anthony Weiner and myself.”

All righty then: Define “inappropriate,” Ms. Cordova.

By your own admission, you publicly described a married congressman as your “boyfriend,” which some people might consider inappropriate.
I advise Cordova to pick up some pepper spray.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

GIL SCOTT-HERON, 1949-2011. Alec Wilkinson's New Yorker article on him from last year is well worth your time; so's Heron's Vibe interview from 1994. That Heron could be, to say the least, difficult is not surprising; what's surprising is that, in this world, more of us aren't. I never complain when a great artist produces less over time, or stops, because it's a miracle that we get art at all, let alone genius.

Last night I pored over a bunch of Heron's stuff and was struck by the great seriousness of it; he had, God knows, a sense of humor, but he didn't clown, and he certainly didn't front. He seems not just to have considered his subjects, but also to have inspected them, carefully and over a lifetime, and his insights are of a very high order. If his introspection was less successful than his inspection, that's just how it goes sometimes, a lot of the time.

Friday, May 27, 2011

A QUICK ONE WHILE SHE'S AWRY. Sorry I've been absent, guys, though now that Memorial Day weekend is here I trust you're busy with traditional liberal recreational activities (e.g., aborted fetus barbecues and Pin the Blood-Libel on the Palin). If you find yourself checking your Blackberry even at the seaside show trial, though, here's an easy layup for you and for me -- Dr. Mrs. Ole Perfesser:
Why are there "Now Hiring" signs in front of so many businesses these days when so many people are complaining about not finding a job? Everywhere I go in Knoxville, there are generic "Now Hiring" signs from the hotels to the car dealerships to the stores at the mall.
Probably means they're hiring, just like the "Men" and "Women" signs on the bathrooms mean one bathroom is for men and the other is for women.
I find it puzzling because if businesses were really that desperate to hire, so much so that they are all putting up signs, why are so many people saying they are having trouble finding work?
Similarly, people keep talking about all these sick people in America who need health care, but I was just over on the West Side bike path and most of those people looked very healthy. It just doesn't add up.

DMOP, her curiosity piqued, goes into some of these businesses and asks them about the signs -- oh just kidding, she does nothing of the kind.
During the Depression, businesses showed their compliance with New Deal programs by putting up the "Blue Eagle," with the motto "We do our part." "The eagle, which had been modeled on an Indian thunderbird, was displayed in windows and stamped on products to show a business's compliance"...

Is the "Now Hiring" sign just a slogan being used to show the business "supports their community" in the current recession even though they are not really hiring? Is it a ploy to make people feel good about the business so they will shop there or is it legit, or both?
She then throws this bizarre speculation to her commenters, who are (as usual) such a delight that I will (as usual) reverse normal alicublog policy and make fun of them.

For instance, there's a guy, TMink, who asserts that the "long line of mothers in stay at home clothes" he saw one day "are getting paid by the government to stay at home, and it is my money that my wife and I earn by going to work that is used to pay for them to stay home." A commenter called Suzanne says there are other possible explanations -- "I'm willing to bet that many of the women who stay home with their children have husbands who earn the same or less than you do." TMink returns to triumphantly explain that "the apartments" -- first mention of these; I guess he means the ones he saw the mothers standing near -- "are listed as 'low income housing' or 'based on income housing.'" So the bitches are by definition layabouts sponging off Mr. and Mrs. TMink! He then adds, "So Suzanne, you lost the bet. What do I win?" -- clearly hoping for the first blowjob of his adult life.

2nd Prize, Carol_Hermann: "Maybe, those signs are the new 'photoshops?'"

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

HELLO, CRUNCHY, WELL HELLO, CRUNCHY, IT'S SO NICE TO HAVE YOU BACK WHERE YOU BELONG. I have lamented the low profile Rod Dreher's been keeping, but today National Review had him speak on the important subject of... well, let him tell it:
Despite the truly admirable, even inspiring, rags-to-riches story Oprah Winfrey can tell, and despite having done some important and moving shows in her time, I count her influence as a net negative on American culture.
He's still got it!
Take the show she broadcast on Islam three weeks after 9/11. I wrote about it on NRO at the time, criticizing Oprah harshly for her propagandistic whitewashing of unpleasant realities in contemporary Islam. She encouraged viewers not to think about what Islam stood for, but rather to feel positive towards Islam, and therefore to deny anything that countered this preferred narrative.
Which was a big mistake, as all the other daytime shows were addressing Islamic theology. Remember the All My Children Sayyid Qutb storyline? I believe he was played by Al Freeman Jr.

Actually Brother Rod's been getting out more -- here's him at Real Clear Politics on the Rapture. I give him great credit for admitting that he worried about the Apocalypse as an adolescent, and more for admitting that "the radical prospect of rebirth through total catastrophe still tempts me in less culturally embarrassing ways." However:
Living in New York City in the aftermath of 9/11 was, I confess, one of the happiest times in my life. It was also the most sorrowful and anxious, and I would not relive it again for anything. But the truth is that that localized apocalypse gave me a newfound sense of purpose and meaning. After that, I knew who I was, what was happening in the world, and what I was to do.
I guess Crunchy Conservatism is something else we can blame on 9/11. Now I'm really glad we killed Bin Laden.
VISUAL AID. I'm going to start using this in posts. Lord knows there'll be plenty of times when it's appropriate. Thanks, Gawker!

UPDATE. This too. How come nobody told me about before?
VIDEO REVIEW. Perhaps spooked by the impending Republican defeat in NY-26, Paul Ryan put together an anti-Mediscare video which the brethren are now rushing out. "Another nifty floating charts video," raves Andrew Stiles at National Review and no, he's not kidding. "I think the GOP needs to get this video out there prominently," says QandO.

The laughs comes early when we are told "Washington has not been honest with you" by Ryan, who has been in Congress since 1999 and has only recently become Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. But never mind. His jacket's off and his sleeves semi-loosened. He means business!

Though the music is properly swirly-sinister in the first part and on-hold-music-optimistic in the second, I must say Ryan misses some opportunities with his iconography:

A little "Patient" figurine receives caduceuses ("health care services") from a hospital ("Provider"), which sends little blue bills to a Federal building ("Medicare"), which sends little blue dollars to the Provider. "Medicare reimburses the doctor with your tax dollars and borrowed money, no questions asked," explains Ryan, and several figurines labeled "Taxpayers" are shown to feed Medicare with their own blue dollars. Thus, "the patient is very disconnected from the cost."

Medicare recipients and would-be recipients probably like this arrangement just fine and hope that, despite the ongoing Depression, it can be sustained long enough that they won't have to die of peritonitis in an unheated rooming house. Couldn't the Medicare building have been made into a house of horrors, with lightning bolts and Joe Stalin climbing on the roof like King Kong? Also, while it's good that the "panel of 15 unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats" Obama wants to "set the price" are all RED, couldn't they also have big cigars and perhaps dookie ropes that say PLAYA? (It's nice that, at the end, the bureaucrats sprout briefcases, but these should spring open to reveal taxpayer dollars, condoms, and hypodermic needles.)

Also, when Ryan tells us that under the Obama plan "many doctors will stop seeing Medicare patients altogether," which will lead to "waiting lists and denied care," and the figurines multiply to reflect this, couldn't they be shown lying in their own filth on cheap gurneys labeled "PROPERTY OF UNITED STATES OF SOCIALIST REPUBLICS"?

Some segments need only a gentle tweak. In the Path to Prosperity section, the red "bureaucrat panel" is swept away and the patient figurine grows large, dwarfing the Medicare building; this should please Tea Party patriots. As Ryan explains that Path to P "provides financial support" (i.e. coupons) to recipients, a moving dotted line issues from the full-grown patient toward Medicare; a small adjustment would make this more obviously a stream of urine, expressing the patient's contempt for Big Government.

I would also suggest Ryan remove phrases like "best care at the lowest cost" and "the high quality we expect at a price we can afford," which sound like advertising grifts for a cut-rate product. Also, while "freedom of choice" is a tested marketing concept, the hospital icons do not alter appreciably after the Path to Prosperity transformation; maybe they should be brightly and distinctively colored, and have water slides and other attractive add-ons.

I like the distinct choice at the end: "A government monopoly and a panel of bureaucrats in Washington, D.C." versus "You." Except the voter looking forward to his end-of-life care probably doesn't like to imagine himself all alone. I realize this conflicts somewhat with the libertarian dream of total autonomy; perhaps some imagery can be devised that suggests the company of other rationally self-interested people who will be in the same boat as You, but will refrain from offering You any demeaning help. Maybe the cast of "Seinfeld"?

Final note: Lose the bit about getting the same kind of care members of Congress get. No one believes that.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

TEA STAINED. Jack Davis underperformed but it looks like Kathy Hochul has pulled it out in NY-26 against Jane Corwin. I haven't followed this race as closely as I did the Scozzafava-Hoffman-Owens NY-23 election in 2009, but on balance I'd say sending John Boehner out there to remind folks that the GOP wants to turn Medicare into a voucher program was probably a bad idea. (So was focusing on beating up Davis as a fake Tea Party candidate -- they seem to have pulled him back from the 12 percent he had in late polls to about 9 percent, but that didn't do the trick.)

The rapid response team would have us think otherwise. "Republicans suck in New York. Period. End of Story," growls Erick Erickson. " will be a stretch to say that it means that the people of suburban Buffalo are telling the country to reject the GOP’s budget plans," assures Jonathan S. Tobin at Commentary. "The complete irrelevance of NY-26," insists Conn Carroll of the Washington Examiner. Etc.

Really? The Chris Lee scandal that led to the special election can't have been helpful. But since the Republicans first gained this seat in 1857, they've held the 26th for all but 17 years. In 2010 Lee got 73.6 percent of the vote. With the flawed vessel removed, you'll think they could have held onto such an advantage.

The Tea Party dream of bathtub-drown'd gummint was a boon to the GOP in 2010, when they did pretty well in western New York. But the Ryan plan and its fallout suggests that, now that the loons the movement brought to Washington are threatening to actually do something about it, it's costing them in a constituency they shouldn't have to worry about: Registered Republicans.

Think they'll get the message?

UPDATE. A beautiful silver lining from DrewM at Ace O'Spades:
On the upside, the GOP got a look at the Democrats playbook on attacking the Ryan plan. We should be better prepared moving forward. Yeah, we shouldn't have been surprised this time but some lessons have to be learned anew.
He's got a point: There is no evidence that Corwin called her opponent a socialist.
SCENES FROM THE COMING HONKYCAUST. A bunch of kids rampaged in a Dunkin' Donuts on Christopher Street last week. I was wondering when the brethren would get on it with their expected interpretation. Apparently Drudge caught up with the story and the sluice-gates are opened. Jim Hoft at Gateway Pundit:
Apparently, it’s racist to note that all of the youths involved in the attack were black just like the flashmob that attacked the Milwaukee Mayfair Mall in January, the mob that attacked a Dupont Circle store in Washington DC in April, and the flashmob that ransacked a Las Vegas convenience store in early May.

Apparently, if you notice these things you’re just being a hateful racist.
Urban Grounds:
...I knew before I saw the video “who” those rioting punks were going to be. And so did you. And…yep…they’re a bunch of black kids, acting like animals and criminals while terrorizing the public...

That’s because in Black Run America, there are no rules of civility or decency. Only a “gonna get mine” attitude born from generation-after-generation of blacks in America being given handouts after handouts. So really, it’s not their fault that they have this entitlement mentality where they believe they can destroy and take anything they want...
Some of the boys just stick the word "black" into the news reports to show what the Lieberal Media won't. Haw haw, jes' sayin'! For some of them, the word "black" just doesn't go far enough.

This charming display of tell-it-like-it-is got me to scanning the news for recent reports of folks in trouble with the law on charges of running and in some cases blowing up meth labs.

This fellow was recently found guilty of running a meth lab in Florida.

The Knoxville (TN) News-Sentinel caught this pale guy being escorted to a ambulance. "Man injured in suspected meth-related blast" is the headline; he and a buddy are up on charges.

Here are a few more photos of recently-suspected meth chefs.

In fairness, most of these people are only suspects and may have fallen prey to the pernicious profiling of white people common in Black-Run America. Jes' sayin', hoss.

Anyway, everyone knows the proper criminal use of a Dunkin' Donuts is for Republican legislators to threaten to shoot people in the parking lot.

Monday, May 23, 2011

BEANBAG. The President is raising lots of money for his reelection, which may persuade some Republicans not to get into the 2012 race against him. Jonah Goldberg, kicking and spraying Cheetos crumbs, cries No Fair:
I think everybody in the mainstream press knows that this is the case. But nobody wants to blame Obama for it.
It is simply understood by reporters at the New York Times or NBC that Republicans “fight dirty.” And so their coverage reflects that even before anything dirty has happened. Well, whatever the merits of that assumption...
Yeah, it's debatable that Republicans fight dirty.’s also true that Democrats fight dirty — and that goes for Obama, too.
No citations, alas.
And yet how much grief does Obama get for it? Remember, he’s the guy who said his chief opponent in 2008 was “cynicism.”
We're supposed to be outraged that Obama is raising money? What does Goldberg expect him to do, take 2012 easy? Why? Out of a spirit of fair play? Maybe he should attend the 2012 Presidential debates in a gorilla mask, too, or put marbles in his mouth.

I await the first of these geniuses to suggest campaign finance reform.

UPDATE. In comments, referring to Goldberg and his quoted source John Podhoretz, whetstone: "Only two wingnut-welfare scions who have, to my knowledge, never had the need to actually be good at anything, could possibly feign shock at this." I'm embarrassed that whet saw before I did the irony of legacy pledge Goldberg complaining about other people's unfair advantages.

Also in comments, Roger Ailes (the good one) shows me the New York Post's story, confirmed only by nameless sources (said to include "Top Dems"!), that Obama is doing oppo research on Chris Christie. So if these Top Dems indeed exist and are telling the truth, the thug Obama is assaulting the defenseless Christie with research! This time he's gone too far. Why, the next thing you know, he may print palmcards and flyers. Nothing's beyond him!
NEW VOICE COLUMN UP, about the latest doings among Republican Presidential candidates -- Mitch Daniels out, Herman Cain on his way to a landslide victory.

I prepared a sidebar about Newt Gingrich's latest adventures, but had no room for it, so I will share it here with you, the real people:
Gingrich took a rightblogger beatdown last week for calling the Paul Ryan Medicare plan "right-wing social engineering," and went to great lengths to redeem himself for it, even calling Rush Limbaugh to explain. Rightbloggers didn't give him much credit for that, though, continuing to call him a RINO, a pinhead, and, most damningly, "the new John McCain."

DrewM at Ace of Spades described a better way for GOP candidates to approach Ryan's politically risky plan: "My advice would be… punt with a twist." That is, they should make "right respectful statements" about it, and then "honestly talk about reform in broad strokes and make it clear some sort of reform will happen," but refrain from producing "a thousand page draft bill in the name of 'specifics'" which Democrats will demand just so they can "have something to club the candidate over the head with… We should give our primary candidates some room for plausible deniability."

Pete Spiliakos at No Left Turns agreed: "If the Republican nominee is running on an unmodified [Ryan Plan]," he said, "they will be worthy of respect, but they will have missed an opportunity to give themselves the best chance to win and implement the change we need."

That's the ticket -- support the plan, but keep it on the down-low. And last weekend, Gingrich was allowed back on the Sunday talk shows to do just that.
Aaaand... scene. Do give the Voice column a look, though; there's plenty funsies in it, particularly having to do with Daniels' wife (that bitch!) and Cain, who must have Ross Perot wondering where all this pro-businessman support was when he was running for President.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

NERD ALERT. At Discover, Kyle Munkittrick tells us about the subversive message in Pixar films. They show animals and machines with human characteristics. And it's not like this is Bulgakov or Kipling we're talking about -- these are popular movies seen by impressionable children.
You can see where I’m going here. Particularly in WALL•E, Ratatouille and Up! there is no ambiguity about the reality of intelligence in the non-human characters...

Non-humans are sentient beings. That is the central difference between Pixar’s universe and our current reality.

That idea alone would suffice to show that Pixar films are all but propaganda for the concept of non-human personhood. But that is where the hidden message begins.

What makes these films so astonishing and the message so powerful is the story arc of the Human as Partner narrative...
Munkittrick concludes: "By watching our favorite films, we have been taught that being human is not the same as being a person. We have been shown that new persons and forms of personhood can come from anywhere. Through Pixar, we have opened ourselves to a better future."

Those of us who grew up with Bugs Bunny outsmarting Elmer Fudd, and whose nerd alarms were blazing from the start of this article, may take it with varying quantities of salt. But Futurepundit grasps the nettle: These Pixar films may dispose us kindly toward robots, and they can't be trusted:
At least biological life forms that are social creatures will very likely have some instinct toward reciprocity. But machine intelligences could manage to escape the ethical programming that humans will try to give them. Since machine intelligences are most likely to be the non-human intelligences that we will encounter in the next 50 years we should be worried about whether we will be able to keep them friendly toward us.
I hope the GOP is paying attention, because this suggests a new opening for Republican Presidential candidates: Instead of yapping about the threat represented by Muslims, unions, and homosexuals, they should ask in tones of thunder what Obama is doing to protect America from the coming robot menace.

They can also take a tip from Ole Perfesser Reynolds, who comments on Pixar's will-sapping pro-robot propaganda:
Movies are poor sources of moral guidance. Just look at the people who make them.
I expect he'll change his tune once his consciousness is uploaded.