Oklahoma Republican Sen. Tom Coburn will seek to offset federal aid to victims of a massive tornado that blasted through Oklahoma City suburbs on Monday with cuts elsewhere in the budget.> more ... (0 comments)
No one, it seems, gets within a mile of the White House with any sense of restraint.
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One of the most thoughtful right-leaning talk radio hosts is Dennis PragerReally, Conor? I must disagree. Prager is easily one of the stupidest, most poorly-informed and least creative talk show hosts imaginable. Granted, the article Friedersdorf cites isn’t bad, but dear Lord, this is such an ignorant whopper I feel I have to lay down some justice. Here’s Prager’s thoughtfulness in effect (link):
Just so that you don’t accuse me of cherry-picking something he wrote years ago, he posted this last week. Violent rhetoric post-Arizona? Not cool, man (though the Christmas references make me think he might have written this in December, to be fair). Keep in mind, I didn’t even have to go looking for this. It finds me (or, more accurately, it finds my significant other Elizabeth and she sends it to me). But, still: LAST WEEK! See, I don’t get how Friedersdorf could possibly think that Rush Limbaugh is awful while praising Dennis Prager. Limbaugh is preferable to Prager by a mile in my opinion, by making points (loathsome as they often are) and being entertaining sometimes. Here’s something else to savor by Prager (this was around the time that health care passed, I believe) and you tell me what you think:If you love liberty, you must target the left and put its totalitarian tendencies in your cross hairs. We must shoot down political correctness and wage a crusade for truth and liberty. All those ladies and gentlemen who cherish personal and societal freedom must fight like great Indian chiefs, braving secondhand smoke if need be, in affirming a masculinity that has been under relentless attack. And yes, we must even endure the taunts of our foes and, at the appropriate time of the year, wish fellow Americans a “Merry Christmas.”Then, and only then, will we be able to vanquish lies, defeat the foes of liberty, and once again be able to proudly sing a national anthem that affirms that “the bombs bursting in air gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.” If we don’t, that line in “The Star-Spangled Banner” will go the way of “Merry Christmas.”
I write the words “civil war” with an ache in my heart. But we are in one. Thank God this civil war is non-violent. But the fact is that the left and the rest of the country share almost no values. The American value system and the leftist value system are irreconcilable. If the left wins, America’s values lose. If American values prevail, the left loses. After Sunday’s vote, for the first time in American history, one could no longer confidently believe that the American system will prevail. And if we don’t fight for it, we don’t deserve it.It saps energy just read it, doesn’t it? It’s just uninspired, tired rhetoric of the sort that nearly anyone on the right throws around. Could be Coulter or Hannity just as easily. Not what I would consider thoughtful stuff. But this is about as thoughtful as he gets, and I’m not sure it’s an improvement (here’s a link):
Finally, and most important, by voting for Democratic Party candidates, you are voting for a type of government more like the ones most Latinos fled.Yeah, Obama’s just like Pinochet! Oh, wait, Pinochet’s economic program in Chile is indistinguishable from what Republicans advocate for! Never mind. I’m not even sure what to make of this:
Take black Americans, for example. It makes perfect sense that a black American who is essentially happy is going to be less attracted to the left. Anyone who has interacted with black conservatives rarely encounters an angry, unhappy person. Why? Because the liberal view on race is that America is a racist society. Therefore, for all intents and purposes, a black American must abandon liberalism in order to be a happy individual. It is very hard, if not impossible, to be a happy person while believing that society is out to hurt you. So, the unhappy black will gravitate to liberalism, and liberalism will in turn make him unhappier by reinforcing his view that he is a victim.I guess this is part of this “Why Obama is angry” bullshit that Dinesh D’Souza is pushing. But the black conservatives I’m aware of tend to be angry yellers like Allen West and Herman Cain, so I guess I don’t agree here. And, if you’re really a glutton for punishment, go ahead and read though some of his large, patronizing op-eds for TownHall. Most of his writing takes the form of long lists of long, leading, weaselly questions addressed toward liberals that only really allow for his particular answer, like this (I swear, this is supposed to be one question):
Given how much you [lefties] rightly hate torture, why did you oppose the removal of Saddam Hussein, whose prisons engaged in far more hideous tortures, on thousands of times more people, than America did — all of whom, moreover, were individuals and families who either did nothing or simply opposed tyranny? One assumes, furthermore, that all those Iraqi innocents Saddam had put into shredding machines or whose tongues were cut out and other hideous tortures would have begged to be waterboarded.This isn’t a question, it’s a damn soliloquy! Warblogging makes a comeback! And much of his “deep thinking” is really meant to emotionalize and shut down debate, not to get it going, which is exactly you see here. If you’re a torture opponent, as I am, how do you even respond to this? (I made an attempt at the time here.) The premises are so idiotic that it’s hard even to know where to start from. Keep in mind this was written in 2009. As in, after the years of deaths fighting for what will wind up a vaguely theocratic strongman state. Tens of thousands of dead civilians, U.S. troops and God only knows how many victims of ethnic and religious cleansing, and Prager has the nerve to act as though it’s an argument for torture! By this point, I can’t even tell the bullshit from the lies. Before I stop (and believe me, I really have to), let me just point out a factual inaccuracy in his recent column about how the left libels the right:
For example, most Americans want to retain the man-woman definition of marriage. Even most voters in liberal Californians [sic] want to. The left has not been able to convince even Californians to redefine marriage to include members of the same sex. So what the left did was to declare as “haters” all those who wanted California to retain the definition of marriage as between a man and a woman. Proposition 8 became “Prop. Hate.”This is Prager in a nutshell to me. You see, I worked for the No On 8 campaign, so I can speak to this. I can say authoritatively that we were told never to use the word “hate” in the same sentence as Prop 8, or ever. All the literature I handed out did not have “hate” in it. Perhaps he’s referring to “the left” as people holding signs by the side of the road, and I did see one or two signs saying to “Stop the hate” by voting No on 8, but if that counts, then the Tea Party should be considered racist because a couple of their people had signs that said “nigger” on them. God, he’s stupid. It’s not like a quick search on the Internet Archive wouldn’t let you see what the No On 8 page looked like in 2008. Oh, I can go on and on. Ultimately, if you want to hear a pompous ass spouting off about the “myth of heterosexual AIDS” and gender role claptrap that would make Dr. Laura say to ease off, then Prager’s your huckleberry. Other than that, stay away! Man, that was exhausting. Oh, and if you liked that “bullshit from the lies” crack, it’s not mine:
Blame it on the racialist thugs who continue to terrorize lower Manhattan with unhinged fear-mongering about some Muslims setting up a community center in an old Burlington Coat Factory, or blame it on a meth-addicted paranoid tooth fairy, it really doesn’t matter.
What does matter, however, is the fact that widespread hyberbolic demonization of always-evil government and the tens of millions of stealth Muslim jihadis in our midst really does drive crazy people to do crazy things:
Roger Stockham, a 63-year-old Army veteran from California who was reportedly angry at the U.S. government, was arrested by police in Michigan and charged with allegedly threatening to blow up a Mosque in Dearborn.
Dearborn police allegedly found Stockham inside his vehicle outside the Islamic Center of America with a load of M-80s in his trunk and other explosives, the Detroit News reported.
Dawud Walid, executive director of the Michigan chapter of the Counsel on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), told the newspaper that police told him the suspect was drinking in a Detroit bar on Monday and threatened to do harm to a mosque in Dearborn. An employee at the bar followed the man outside and wrote down his license plate, which he reported to police, Walid told the newspaper.
The 63-year-old grandfather is charged with one count of a false report or threat of terrorism and one count of possession of bombs with unlawful intent, according to the newspaper.
Let us always be wary of the threat that Decoy Muslims pose to America:
Rarely have I seen the basic logic of this ever-present cliche so efficiently dismembered, in the course of a libertarian case for gay marriage: ”How does that work? If you find pedophilia disgusting, do you secretly want to rape kids? If you’re against the senseless torturing of animals, do you secretly want to hook up a kitten to a car battery? No. Only when you say homosexuality might be gross does this logic apply.” Could it be that some people do just find it disgusting? Not that I approve of the attitude that that personal squeamishness should keep people from exercising their rights, and the whole mentality is usually due to a lack of exposure to actual gay people. I know it was for me growing up. You know when it changed? When I actually met some gay people. And Andrew Sullivan’s book made the important point that a lot of the virulently antigay people see themselves as coming from a place of love, to try to somehow improve the lives of gay people or save their souls. Bigotry is bad, but it’s not the exclusive province of the homophobes by any means.
This is in response to some comments by the actress Jane Lynch in an interview to the effect that Obama didn’t want to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Right before he did it. In terms of her quality as a political pundit, Jane Lynch makes for a very funny actress. (Okay, old joke, but still…it’s true.) This all just makes me wonder why so many progressives simply don’t trust Barack Obama at all. Okay, it’s one thing to say that he’s made mistakes and hasn’t fulfilled every promise, though he has followed through on a lot, and some of the ones on which he didn’t weren’t his fault. But still, you’re confronted constantly by left-wingers who won’t just say that Obama means well but hasn’t delivered on what they wanted, but that not delivering is somehow proof that he’s actively opposed to all of their values, as opposed to a politician who sympathizes with them but has to deal with political realities. After all, 51% of voters wanted the public option, and if he just wanted it enough the 60 votes would surely appear in response to that overwhelming public demand! That it didn’t happen must mean Obama didn’t want it to. This. Is. Just. Nuts. As many of the more wonky bloggers will tell you, nearly all of those shortfalls can be laid neatly at the feet of the United States Senate, particularly on a small number of conservative Democrats and moderate Republicans with whom Obama had next to no leverage, and the strategy that Obama followed–doing his best at accommodation, basically–was probably optimal. But that very simple, very logical explanation does not have much truck with the likes of Kos, Hamsher, and apparently Jane Lynch. It’s too nuanced. Too complicated. Blaming Senate rules for the failure of cap-and-trade (which would have been a push even with a majority Senate before Scott Brown won) and the death of the public option is an easy case to make, and to my mind the right explanation. But it’s not a satisfying explanation, emotionally speaking. Blaming the president, despite the convoluted case, has got to be more satisfying. Taking the angle that Obama’s detached cool is indicative of a bloodless, sniveling nature is a tempting enough line of attack. Of course, Obama’s coldness is substantially exaggerated by detractors, as there are plenty of instances of him showing passion in speeches. But it’s a convenient narrative. The alternatives are not as dramatic or direct–I could understand blaming Senate Democrats for not ending the filibuster in 2009, as doing that would have rendered the filibustering Republicans powerless. But as targets for anger, Blanche Lincoln and Ben Nelson don’t make as big of targets as Obama.
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