30 October 2005

The kind of thing not asked in polite society

[source, source]

The journalist Ian Buruma, though not a supporter of the war, has accused the fashionable left of practicing a form of moral racism, in which the brutalities of the West provoke outrage but the far greater crimes of third-world monsters like Saddam Hussein are passed over in silence. A magisterial nonchalance marches under the banner of moral superiority. Apropos the novelist Julian Barnes’s comment that the war wasn’t worth the loss of a single life, Norman Geras, a British political theorist, mordantly observes, “Not one, eh? So much for the victims of the rape rooms and the industrial shredders.”

Better is the question: “how many lives is the peace worth?”.

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We'll just tighten that up a bit


Another member of the 1/5, Cpl. Jeffrey B. Starr, rejected a $24,000 bonus to re-enlist. Corporal Starr believed strongly in the war, his father said, but was tired of the harsh life and nearness of death in Iraq. So he enrolled at Everett Community College near his parents’ home in Snohomish, Wash., planning to study psychology after his enlistment ended in August.

But he died in a firefight in Ramadi on April 30 during his third tour in Iraq. He was 22.

Sifting through Corporal Starr’s laptop computer after his death, his father found a letter to be delivered to the marine’s girlfriend. ”I kind of predicted this,” Corporal Starr wrote of his own death. ”A third time just seemed like I’m pushing my chances. I don’t regret going, everybody dies but few get to do it for something as important as freedom. It may seem confusing why we are in Iraq, it’s not to me. I’m here helping these people, so that they can live the way we live. Not have to worry about tyrants or vicious dictators. To do what they want with their lives. To me that is why I died. Others have died for my freedom, now this is my mark

The bold part is what the NY Times felt was not news fit to print. Is the lack of effect of the bias at the NY Times what is driving them to ever greater efforts at distortion, like a child acting up who can’t get adults to pay attention?

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Where does my culture apply for such "understandings"?

[source, source]

POLICE are being advised to treat Muslim domestic violence cases differently out of respect for Islamic traditions and habits. […]

Women’s groups are concerned the politically correct policing could give comfort to wife bashers and keep their victims in a cycle of violence.

The instructions come in a religious diversity handbook given to Victorian police officers that also recommends special treatment for suspects of Aboriginal, Hindu and Buddhist background. […]

Police are told: “In incidents such as domestic violence, police need to have an understanding of the traditions, ways of life and habits of Muslims.”

What’s the bottom line here, “she’s Muslim so she deserved it”?

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26 October 2005

Oh, Canada!

[source, source]

Large increases in health-related spending have only marginally reduced the waiting times for medical services in this country [Canada] from record-high levels in 2004, a new report says. […]

Dr. Brian Postl, the Winnipeg health administrator who acts as the federal government’s wait times advisor, said the Fraser Institute results confirm what most Canadians know: It often takes too long to get medical care.

But he said it is unrealistic to expect the new infusion of cash from the federal government to bring tangible results yet.

“The money has only been entering the system in the last few months in most jurisdictions,” Dr. Postl said. “Though each province has some considerable success story to tell about how things have improved, a lot of that wouldn’t have filtered down to physicians’ practices.”

Can there be any better illustration of the modern bureaucratic mentality than that Dr. Postl offers his undoubtedly correct explanation confident it will be greeted with understanding rather than rage.

But of course the bureaucrats can have this world view only because the citizenry does as well.

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22 October 2005

We take sides in a non-partisan way

[source, source]

On February 25, 1990, the people of Nicaragua went to the polls. I videotaped the parade held shortly before that. I spoke with and taped members of the Communist Party who disliked the Sandinistas intensely but agreed that probably they would win because “Nicaragua is not yet ready for Communism.” I talked with members of the Marxist-Leninist Party, who found Daniel far far too soft on landowners but agreed that he’d probably win anyway. On that day I taped conversations with people from fifteen different parties, and no one, however opposed to the Sandinistas, seemed to really believe that the coalition put together by the U.S. could defeat the incumbents.

On the night of the election, all of us who were with the press or worked as observers gathered in the huge Olaf Palme building, a gift to the Sandinistas from Sweden. Outside, men with machetes were expertly cutting the grass. Spirits were high and the biggest question was exactly how we would celebrate the victory.

The key point here is the open admission of just how un-biased the journalists were as they waited to “celebrate the victory”.

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What's next, Imelda Marcos on self restraint?

[source, source]

The United States has expressed “amazement” at a UN invitation to Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe to address a hunger conference in Rome on Monday to mark the 60th anniversary of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).

I have to agree with the source that any one could be amazed at this kind of behavior on the part of the UN and its agencies. After all, this is the same organization that asked to take over the Internet during a conference hosted in country that strongly censors online content.

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That's what happens when you mix savages and modern technology

[source, source]

THE United Nations withheld some of the most damaging allegations against Syria in its report on the murder of Rafik Hariri, the former Lebanese Prime Minister, it emerged yesterday.

The names of the brother of Bashar al-Assad, President of Syria, and other members of his inner circle, were dropped from the report that was sent to the Security Council.

The confidential changes were revealed by an extraordinary computer gaffe because an electronic version distributed by UN officials on Thursday night allowed recipients to track editing changes.

What would we do for entertainment if the transnationalists and thugs of the UN weren’t so stunningly incompetent?

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Memhole Watch

[source, source]

[Chief of staff to former Secretary of State Colin Powell, Laurence] Wilkerson confirmed that the US and other foreign intelligence agencies believed that what Powell presented to the UN was “the truth” and that the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research also believed Powell was “right” on Saddam’s chemical and biological weapons.

[…] I can’t tell you why the French, the Germans, the Brits and us thought that most of the material, if not all of it, that we presented at the U.N. on 5 February 2003 was the truth. I can’t. I’ve wrestled with it. I don’t know — and people say, well, INR dissented. That’s a bunch of bull. INR dissented that the nuclear program was up and running. That’s all INR dissented on. They were right there with the chems and the bio […]

When you see a satellite photograph of all the signs of the chemical weapons ASP — Ammunition Supply Point — with chemical weapons, and you match all those signs with your matrix on what should show a chemical ASP, and they’re there, you have to conclude that it’s a chemical ASP, especially when you see the next satellite photograph which shows the U.N. inspectors wheeling in in their white vehicles with black markings on them to that same ASP and everything is changed, everything is clean. None of those signs are there anymore.

But George [Tenet] was convinced, John McLaughlin [then deputy DCI] was convinced that what we were presented [for Powell’s UN speech] was accurate […]

Wilkerson also said that French intelligence believed the aluminum tubes were designed for centrifuges.

The French came in in the middle of my deliberations at the CIA and said, we have just spun aluminum tubes, and by god, we did it to this RPM, et cetera, et cetera, and it was all, you know, proof positive that the aluminum tubes were not for mortar casings or artillery casings, they were for centrifuges. Otherwise, why would you have such exquisite instruments?

As the original post notes, none of this was mentioned in the extensive coverage of other parts of Wilkerson’s remarks. Just not fit to print, you see.

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04 October 2005

We the enlightened few, of course

[source, source]

When asked about the abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib in Iraq, Bolton said the U.S. — not other countries or international organizations —- should hold its own citizens accountable for possible abuse.

“We don’t need anybody else to judge us,” he said. “We judge our own.”

The answer prompted loud hissing from the audience, but Bolton offered students a question of his own.

“I’m just curious, those of you who are hissing, who do you think will judge better than us?” he asked the audience.

Exactly the right question. The critics know what their answer is but dare not speak it aloud because it would reveal too much.

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03 October 2005

Cleaning up toxic waste

[source, source]

On Sept. 9, the Labor Department issued a short memo, signed by a lowly deputy assistant secretary, that undid the law of the land, ostensibly to deal with the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. The memo relieved new federal contractors of the obligation to have a plan for hiring minorities, women, Vietnam veterans and disabled people on Katrina-related projects. The suspension is for three months, “subject to an extension should special interests in the national interest so require.”

Perhaps there is always a silver lining.

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Not like there's anything wrong with that!


It took liberals less than two hours before questioning SCOTUS nominee Harriet Miers sexuality.

At least this time they are going after the candidate, instead of their kids.

Update: GayPatriot made the prediction at 8:49 AM. Can we call him Kreskin now?

What makes this kind of this so odd is the spectacle of the Modern American Left treating homosexuality as a stain.

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