Monthly Archives: January 2008

Five Letters from Bin Laden

Found, in Pakistan, five letters from Bin Laden. That’s basically what the article says, with a few unimportant details thrown in.

Update: Continue reading

The New Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail

In the middle of an article on the slow grinding to a halt that was the Fred Thompson campaign, Andrew Ferguson immerses the reader in the modern version of fear and loathing on the campaign trail.

It’s not pleasant to think of the life they lead, these Americans who would be president, from the first hints of dawn to well past midnight, this life of endless demands, this succession of superficial sociability, in which you smile and smile and pop your eyes wide open in delighted wonder at the ever-shifting kaleidoscope of faces and places that circles before you, and you haven’t the time or leisure to settle on a single one. Charming countryside, pretty little towns, sprawling centers of commerce and industry fly by and you haven’t a moment to enjoy them or learn their tales. You rush to meet hundreds of people a day and never have a meaningful exchange of words with any of them.

From the backseats of freezing cars and vans you’re hustled into overheated coffee shops and those packed school gymnasiums with the stink rising to the rafters and then the oppressive hush of corporate meeting rooms, where your nose starts to run and a film of sweat forms under your wool pullover, and you press the outstretched hands that carry every bacterial pathogen known to epidemiology. You open your mouth and you release the same cloud of words you recited yesterday and the day before. And in the Q&A, when you stop to listen, you hear the same questions and complaints from yesterday, the same mewling and blame-shifting, all imploring you to do the impossible and through some undefined action make the lives of these unhappy citizens somehow edifying, uplifting, and worth living. And you always promise you will do that; you have no choice but to tell this kind of lie.

There’s no rest, because there’s not a moment to waste: The handful of minutes away from the kaleidoscope are spent chatting with the scorpions of the press, the ill-dressed, ill-mannered reporters from the prints and the pretty, preening peacocks of TV, each of them either a know-it-all or a cynic or a dope, take your pick, and each of whom, for professional and other reasons, will deploy all his energies and cleverness to the task of trapping you into a misstatement or ungenerous remark or expression of irritation so he can convey to his editors and the world that–at last!–you’ve made a gaffe; and if you won’t make a gaffe then he will convey to his editors and the world how “scripted” and “over rehearsed” you sound; kind of slick, almost robotic, inauthentic.

When the scorps are dismissed, in the seconds before you pass from the freezing van to the overheated gym or boardroom, a sycophant whose name you can’t remember hands you a cell phone that connects you to a rich man whose face you dimly recall from another boardroom last summer and you beg him to give you money, or more often–considering the grinding pressure you feel for cash, always for cash–you beg him to assemble a circle of other rich men that he can beg on your behalf, and when you sign off you don’t have time to be grateful. There will be more calls before dinner and after dinner, and dinner is a cold thigh of chicken in a sump of clotted gravy served from a steam table in a freezing cinderblock banquet room at the Lions Club, and a hundred pairs of eyes fix themselves on you–a celebrity, someone they’ve seen on TV–as you dribble the gravy on your shirtfront. And after you release the same words and hear the same complaints you go to bed in a Hampton Suites for five hours of sleep on starchy sheets with dimly visible stains whose origins are impossible to discern, and from the corner the digital display on the microwave flashes 12:00 12:00 12:00 . . .

And you do all this so you can wake up the next morning and do it again. Because you like it.

Imagine liking that. Just for a second, try it. It’s too much for me, through the looking glass and straight into the sky past the second star on the left where troubles smell like lemon drops and way above the chimney tops that’s where you won’t find me.

Not only don’t I want to run for President after that, I don’t want anyone I like to run for President. Maybe this is an argument for John McCain, but if so it’s an odd one.

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Trackposted to guerrilla radio, Right Truth, Shadowscope, Pirate’s Cove, The Pink Flamingo, Cao’s Blog, Leaning Straight Up, The Pet Haven, A Newt One, CORSARI D’ITALIA, Conservative Cat, Adeline and Hazel, Right Voices, and The Yankee Sailor, thanks to Linkfest Haven Deluxe.

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Go Ralph!

Ralph Nader is thinking of running for president, again. Since Denny K. left the 2008 race the Martians didn’t know who to vote for. Now Ralph may be getting in. The Martians (and the Jovians and Saturnines as well) are happier than you will ever know.

Vote Ralph Nader! Do it for the extraterrestrials among us.

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Trackposted to The Virtuous Republic, A NEWT ONE- PLEASE UNITE NOW!, The Random Yak, third world county, Shadowscope, The Pink Flamingo, Leaning Straight Up, Cao’s Blog, Big Dog’s Weblog, A Newt One, Conservative Cat, and The Yankee Sailor, thanks to Linkfest Haven Deluxe.

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Even Jimmah Carter favors photo ID to guard against US voter fraud

Who wouldda thunk it?!

Former President Carter stated on March 22, 2006, “Within the next three or four years, all 50 states will move to some kind of voter ID.” Carter, along with former Secretary of State James Baker, recently led the Commission on Federal Election Reform. Among the commission’s recommendations was the requirement of photographic identification at the polls to curb voter fraud.

Related: How to Cheat the Vote

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Trackposted to The Virtuous Republic, A NEWT ONE- PLEASE UNITE NOW!, The Random Yak, third world county, Shadowscope, The Pink Flamingo, Leaning Straight Up, Cao’s Blog, Big Dog’s Weblog, A Newt One, Conservative Cat, and The Yankee Sailor, thanks to Linkfest Haven Deluxe.

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The Oil Parable Open Trackbacks

“Brethren,” said the preacher, “the Lord made the world round like a ball.”

“Amen!” agreed the congregation.

“And the Lord made two axles for the world to go round on, and He put one axle at the North Pole and one axle at the South Pole.”

“Amen!” shouted the congregation.

“And the Lord put a lot of oil in the center of the world to keep the axles well greased.”

“Amen!” cried the congregation.

“And then a lot of sinners dug wells in Pennsylvania and stole the Lord’s grease. And in Kentucky, Texas, Alaska, Mexico, Russia, Araby and Persia, and all through Africa, and pilfered more of the Lord’s grease. And some day they will have all the Lord’s grease, and them axles is gonna get hot. And then that will be hell, brethren, that will be hell!”

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Davy Crockett, modern populist politician

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Read some of Davy Crockett’s advice to them as aspire to politicking.

“Attend all public meetings,” says I, “and get some friends to move that you take the chair- if you fail in this attempt, make a push to be appointed secretary; the proceedings of course will be published, and your name is introduced to the public. But should you fail in both undertakings, get two or three acquaintances, over a bottle of whiskey, to pass some resolutions no matter on what subject; publish them even if you pay the printer- it will answer the purpose of breaking the ice, which is the main point in these matters. Intrigue until you are elected an officer of the militia; this is the second step towards promotion, and can be accomplished with ease, as I know an instance of an election being advertised, and no one attending, the innkeeper at whose house it was to be held, having a military turn, elected himself colonel of his regiment.” Says I, “You may not accornpb your ends with as little difficulty, but do not be discouraged- Rome wasn’t built in a day.

“If your ambition or circumstances compel you to serve your country, and earn three dollars a day, by becoming a member of the legislature you must first publicly avow that the constitution of the state is a shackle upon free and liberal legislation; and is, therefore, of as little use in the present enlightened age, as an old almanac of the year in which the instrument was framed. There is policy in this measure, for by making the constitution a mere dead letter, your headlong proceedings will be attributed to a bold and unshackled mind, whereas, it might otherwise be thought they arose from sheer mulish ignorance. ‘The Government’ has set the example in his attack upon the constitution of the United States, and who should fear to follow where ‘the Government’ leads?

“When the day of election approaches, visit your constituents far and wide. Treat liberally, and drink freely, in order to rise in their estimation though you fall in your own. True, you may be called a drunken dog by some of the clean shirt and silk stocking gentry, but the real rough necks will style you a jovial fellow, their votes are certain, and frequently, count double. Do all you can to appear to advantage in the eyes of the women. That’s easily done- you have but to kiss and slabber their children, wipe their noses, and pat them on the head; this cannot fail to please their mothers, and you may rely on your business being done in that quarter.

“Promise all that is asked,” said I, “and more if you can think of up thing. Offer to build a bridge or a church, to divide a county, create a batch of new offices, make a turnpike, or anything they like. Promises cost nothing, therefore deny nobody who has a vote or sufficient influence to obtain one.

“Get up on all occasions, and sometimes on no occasion at all, and make long-winded speeches, though composed of nothing else than wind- talk of your devotion to your country, your modesty and disinterestedness, or on any such fanciful subject. Rail against taxes of all kinds, office-holders, and bad harvest weather; and wind up with a flourish about the heroes who fought and bled for our liberties in the times that tried men’s souls. To be sure you run the risk of being considered a bladder of wind or an empty barrel, but never mind that, you will find enough of the same fraternity to keep you in countenance.

“If any charity be going forward, be at the top of it, provided it is to be advertised publicly; if not, it isn’t worth your while. None but a fool would place his candle under a bushel on such an occasion.

“These few directions,” said I, “if properly attended to, will do your business; and when once elected, why a fig for the dirty children, the promises, the bridges, the churches, the taxes, the offices, and the subscriptions, for it is absolutely necessary to forget all these before you can become a thorough-going politician, and a patriot of the first water.”

This may or may not have been what Crockett actually said. It was credited to him in a book published in 1860 (also see here and here). What is most remarkable is how Crockett’s rules of guidance, typical of Jacksonian Democrats of the time period, are such bold populism in warp and woof. We tend to think that our own de-generation of politicians is the most populist and pandering batch of thieves ever to make their hideout at the state or national capital. But things have been just as bad in the past. We shall always have Davy Crockett to remind us.

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Oh What a Sign: Clinton or Prosperity?

Pick one.

Friday “I Feel Your Pain” Open Post

Friday Open Trackback post, get ’em while they’re hot! Comment, Trackback or Pingback here with your front-page-worthy thoughts.

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The Billary Clintons play the race card

Kyle-Anne Shiver has been conducting a virtual seminar at the American Thinker for the past month or so in how Barack Obama and the Billary Clintons, who were all well trained in Saul Alinsky’s 4GW methods of agitation, have been employing the Alinsky techniques to destroy and defeat each other. The Alinsky technique is a vicious way of scapegoating and personally destroying a opponent in order to arouse and excite one’s own followers and demoralize and defeat the opponent’s followers.

Even though Obama seems to be harnessing the South Carolina black vote that will give him that state’s delegates, he has been feeling the brunt of the Clintons’ mastery of the tactic of polarization, taught decades ago to Hillary by Saul Alinsky.
Obama is being forced into the position of being the black candidate. Successfully polarizing Obama, who has attempted to run as the anti-polarity uniter, a man in the middle, has not been a lazy-day walk in the park for the Clintons, and surely would not have been attempted if Obama hadn’t trounced them in Iowa. [link]
Let me set something straight. I am a pragmatic anti-racist. I believe that race is a useless distinction. Race is a lie. There is no black race, no white race, no oriental race, no Jewish, Palestinian, English, French, Swedish, Aryan, German, Swiss, Russian, Ethiopian, Eritrean or Arab race. Caucasian, Mongolian, Negro are all long-rejected classifications of the human race based on the way that people look and the color of their skin. The human race is the only race worth favoring. Well, maybe wolves and other dogs deserve some favoring too.But black and white racism is about as stupid as white chocolate. Dark chocolate, on the other hand…

The Alinsky technique goes something like this. Find an opponent who has some reason to avoid open conflict. This opponent will become the scapegoat for all that is wrong in the world, the focus of agitation and polarization. Followers will come to believe this scapegoat is a vile enemy. It is not necessary that the scapegoat really be a vile enemy. They simply need to be able to be painted as an enemy.

Cue George W. Bush. Is Bush derangement syndrome more understandable now?

Ridicule the enemy. Then blame the enemy for whatever the enemy has. It doesn’t have to be anything bad. It only has to be something you don’t have. Start making a lot of noise. Be rude, horrible, hateful. This isn’t about truth or reality, it is about turning your followers into mad dogs and frightening the enemy and any innocent bystanders into letting you get away with whatever you want to do.

Hillary Clinton wrote her thesis on the tactics of Saul Alinsky. She was offered a job to work directly for Alinsky in Chicago, but turned it down to go to law school at Yale, where she worked to defend Black Panthers from murder charges. She understands Alinsky’s method very well. After graduating, Obama went to work for a community organization in Chicago that needed a black person to rabble rouse in the hood. They used the Alinsky method to agitate for free goodies for the “Have Nots.” Obama learned by doing and became very good at it. He got good enough that it led to his first political office as a ward politician in Chicago.

Obama does not want to engage in verbal combat with Hillary Clinton because no man should fight a woman. Mrs. Clinton already complained that the men were beating up on helpless poor little rich-girl Hill at an early debate. Obama knows that beating up a girl is a losing tactic. Instead, he has been direct about publicly scapegoating Bill Clinton as the problem with the hostility in the campaign. He will not do the same to Mrs. Clinton. Perhaps he will find some subordinates to do the dirty work of tarring her. If he wants to have a chance he will.

Obama is as likable as Bill Clinton. He doesn’t need to get into the mud to fight it out. He could win without using Alinsky tactics. Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, is not charismatic. She needs to use Alinsky-style tactics. If you thought the Bill Clinton years were divisive and polarizing for the country, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

Following the successful example of the Clintons, the Democrats divide the country up into tribes of women, blacks, hispanics, gays and lesbians, abortionists, leftover marxists, good and bad members of the military, good and bad businessmen, tobacco-spitting hicks, NASCAR voters, and the like. If they can assemble enough tribes into their coalition they can win. They do not have any interest in bringing people together or in erasing tribal distinctions. They succeed when they polarize people and drive them into tribes, because that makes the tribes angry and easy to manipulate with Alinsky-style tactics.

So what are the Billary Clintons doing against Obama? They are turning his black support against him. He is not running on race, but black people support him anyway. The Clintons will force him to stand with his race while Hillary gathers women to herself, and in a vote along tribal lines the 50% woman vote beats the 10% black vote. They will also ridicule his lack of experience, as he is only a first term Senator, while touting Hillary Clinton’s experience.

This leaves an opening the Republican opponent can use in the general election. Ultra-feminist Hillary Clinton is counting being the long-suffering wife of a philandering President as experience leading the country. It isn’t, no matter how much she cries about it. She is only a second-term Senator and never held any elected office before joining the Senate. Plus she is older than Bill by a year. Perhaps she will cry in her defense again. Perhaps? Surely she will.

The presidential campaign is going to get really ugly. Uglier than we have ever seen it. And that ugliness will be something that can be turned against those who use it.

Links to more sources on these tactics below.

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Post-modernist Chomsky has trouble separating truth from falsehood

Noam Chomsky continues his Jew-baiting ways, this time while visiting Iran. Read all about it at Gateway Pundit.

The Iranian Mehr News is reporting on their exclusive interview with America-hating Leftist Noam Chomsky:

Noam Chomsky, a widely known intellectual and political activist, says an immediate punishment of Palestinians started “for the crime of not following orders” by Israel and U.S.

In an interview with the Mehr News Agency, Chomsky said, “Savage punishment of Palestinians by the U.S.-Israeli alliance” should come to an end.

Oy vey! What a yutzi pomo shmeckle he is! Look it up. His mother should be alive today to see what a self-hating Jew she raised.

h/t: Thomas Lifson

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