Saturday, October 31, 2009

Medvedev: Remember Stalin's Horrors!

Unexpected good news from Russia: President Dmitri Medvedev warned that Russians have lost their sense of horror over the unspeakable crimes of Joseph Stalin. In a video post to the Kremlin website, Medvedev urged the construction of museums and memorial centers devoted to the manifest slaughters committed by Stalin. This is good news and MC earnestly hopes that actions follow these words.

Click on the title of this post to read the NY Times article on this development.

Friday, October 30, 2009

A New Biography Of Ayn Rand

"Ayn Rand and the World She Made" by Anne C. Heller is reviewed in this Sunday's New York Times' Book Review by Adam Kirsch. Click on the title of this post to read it.

In Shift, GOP Leaders Embrace Hoffman

New York's congressional district 23 special election is shaping up to be a fascinating exercise in hope and despair within the GOP. Local and national bigs picked Dede Scozzafava to be the republican in the race but one would be hard put to identify her as such given her liberal stands on a plethora of issues (quick! name another Republican who supports card check). As there was no primary in which to contest this abject pick, local conservative and republican Doug Hoffman got the endorsement of the Conservative Party (say, there's an idea!) and is now running in a three way race along with democrat Bill Owens. The district has been solidly GOP since before the dawn of time.

How pathetic is some of our ersatz leadership? Newt endorsed Scozzafava, a RINO par excellance, while RNC Chair Steele stands behind her (MC kindof sortof understands his predicament), while the House GOP leaders John Boehner and Eric Cantor and the NRCC support her as well. MC would ask what were they thinking but it appears thought wasn't involved at all.

Meantime, Dick Army, Sarah Palin, Fred Thompson and former NRCC chairman Tom Cole have all endorsed the true conservative in the race Doug Hoffman. Once he found out the waters were fine, Timmy Pawlenty ostentatiously declared he too, by golly, was for Hoffman! If we guarantee him the Veep spot in 2012, would he stop running now just to spare us the sight of overreach?

At any rate, this special election and the conservative "base" declining to endorse the out of touch "leadership" choice has provided the MSM with lots of fodder to cluck about and pretend to care about the overall fortunes of the GOP. Right. Margaret Carlson just the other day said that Palin lit the match on the GOP bonfire. Not quite, Maggie.

Turns out that Hoffman is surging in the district (see how people will disappoint the leadership when given a choice?) and now Politico reports that GOP leadership (that word again) says he'd be welcomed with open arms! This from the chair of the NRCC Pete Sessions who saw fit to run ads against Hoffman only days ago!

As we said, pathetic. Click on the title of this post to read the Politico story.

UPDATE (that was fast): Former New York Gov. George Pataki (R) endorsed Conservative party candidate Doug Hoffman, Politico reports, "the clearest sign yet that even the most establishment New York Republicans now view Hoffman as having the best shot at preventing a Democrat from winning next Tuesday's special election."

And yet some mocked Palin when she endorsed him more than two weeks ago. No, she won't be President nor, MC predicts, even run for it in 2012, but can we take talent, excitement and leadership where we find it? Or must be be stuck with Newt, Timmy and the gang?

Surprise! Iran Reneges On Refueling "Deal"

MC isn't the gambling type but we wish we would have placed bets with our doe-eyed liberal friends who cooed, to mix metaphors, about what progress Obama represented when it comes to Iran. Recall that by shamefully staying silent for more than a week in the face of the Islamo-fascist regime slaughtering its own citizens in the streets, Obama hoped to curry favor with the mullahs. Later, in negotiations Iran made noises about being amenable to shippping out to Russia its spent uranium so as not to have it around for enrichment to atomic bomb grade.

Gee, the NY Times reports today that Iran has rejected the initial proposal for shipment to Russia. Could Obama and his foolish advisors ever have really thought this would come to pass? If so, they are more naive and dangerous than MC ever imagined.

The NY Times, ever stupid, actually says the following as its second sentence in reporting this story: "The apparent rejection of the deal could unwind President Obama’s effort to buy time to resolve the nuclear standoff."

Hello, Pinch? Buehler? Anyone? Delay is Tehran's game, Tehran's goal! "Buying time" to resolve the nuclear standoff? Good grief, delay is the means through which the standoff becomes moot by Iran having a nuclear bomb.

Somewhere Bibi is both rolling his eyes and thinking "I told him so."

Click on the title of this post to read the NY Times article.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The End Of Newspapers

Click on the above-graphic to see the startling details for yourself. As one wag put it: Good night, sweet prints.

Hat tip: www.the awl.com

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

A Perfect New Yorker Halloween Cover

We know it isn't Halloween yet but we liked this cover so much we posted it now. MC is still under the weather and this is about as much as we can manage at the moment.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Apres Kyoto


Sorry for the absence of blogging; the St. Paul half of MC was in Kyoto, Japan for the last week. What an amazing city and country and culture. MC has the crud and is trying to recover. When we do, we'll be, as they say, back!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Same As It Ever Was: Stop Making Sense Turns 25

Some things are seminal and some are not. Some things are hyped with no substance and some are with it. The Talking Heads concert film by director Jonathan Demme admits of no other conclusion than substance and then some which endures. Happy 25th.

You can order the Blu Ray disc HERE and you should.

Friday, October 9, 2009

It's Tough For Parody Out There These Days . . . .

Marge Simpson To Appear On Playboy Cover

MC will buy the issue but only, of course, to read the articles. Click on the title of this post to read the story. We thought it a hoax at first, too.

Obama Wins Nobel For Not Being Bush!

One half of MC threw up on himself while the other half tore out her hair upon learning that the Vapid One won the 2009 Nobel Peace prize. What a way to start the day! Upon reflection:

1. MC agrees with Rick Klein of The Note: be careful of what you don't wish for. This prize comes with lots of baggage and only underscores that, in fact, Obama has accomplished nothing. And that SNL skit was only last weekend. What fun they'll have with it tomorrow! Click HERE to read Klein.

2. Hamas thugs and Islamic fascists have already weighed in and poo-pooed the award. Heh: how's that Cairo speech working out for you Barry? One cretin in Pakistan said the award was an "embarrassing joke." MC finds itself in the odd position of agreeing with a terrorist. Click HERE to read a round-up of reaction in the Arab world (courtesy of Reuters, naturally).

3. Blake Hounshell, the managing editor of Foreign Policy magazine had the high brow reaction of "WTF?" to news of the award. Think about it: squishes in foreign policy land are rolling their eyes. If the members of the Committee thought they were doing Obama a favor they have miscalculated. Click HERE to read Hounshell's tweets; some are quite funny.

4. Ronald Krebs writes in Foreign Policy magazine that these "aspirational" awards have been given out for years. Perhaps the Committee finally jumped the shark? Krebs quotes by name a former Committee member who cheerfully states that the Peace Prize is expressly political. Apparently so! Click HERE to read his article about how little the prize has actually accomplished.

5. Seems most Israelis are rolling their eyes, what with the deep love and afffection Obama has generated in that small, beleaguered country. Likudnick Donny Danon snarkily and correctly observed: "This is the first time the award is given for wishful thinking."

6. Developing (as Drudge would put it): some think Obama should decline the award, including Jeffrey Goldberg and Marc Ambinder. With his ego? MC thinks some on the East coast have started drinking Bloody Marys before blogging today; not that we weren't tempted.

7. Mickey Kaus is onto something: "the possibility for a Nobel backlash seems non-farfetched." MC admits to being first into the backlash trenches! Click HERE to read Kaus.

8. Ali Akbar Javanfekr, Ahmadinejad's media aide, said: "We are not upset and we hope that by receiving this prize he will start taking practical steps to remove injustice in the world." Iran isn't upset! THERE is Obama's accomplishment: he did nothing to win this award but in winning it has not upset the Iranians! Good God! A bloody Mary looks awfully good about now.

9. Ian Martin of the WSJ echoes the reaction of most Americans: For what? Click HERE to read his short take.

10. MC's final take? (We surely won't blog about this again!). The award means nothing at best; at worst it takes some form of Kaus predicted backlash, ensuring even more media coverage of the media addict and leaving most Americans with an indescribable sick feeling in the pit of their stomachs. We found the following comment posted at the Washington Post to be both amusing and a fair assessment of our feelings:

What a busy time! When is the crucifixion scheduled for?

Posted by: ravitchn | October 9, 2009 9:20 AM


Hat tip: Mike Downing for the graphic; WaPo for gathering reaction stories.

UPDATE: From the Washington Post:

Reaction: Obama Wins Nobel Peace Prize

By Garance Franke-Ruta

Updated 10:25 a.m.
A surprising unanimity of opinion is emerging online that the award has been given to Obama prematurely -- and that this both poses a potential danger to his presidency and will serve as a challenge to the credibility of the Nobel-awarding committee in Oslo.

At Time magazine, Nancy Gibbs argues, "The last thing Barack Obama needed at this moment in his presidency and our politics is a prize for a promise."

Tweets ABC News's Jake Tapper, referring to a controversy earlier in Obama's presidency: "apparently the standards are more exacting for an ASU honorary degree these days."

(An Arizona State University spokesperson in April explained a decision to invite the president to give the commencement address without also giving him an honorary degree by saying, "His body of work is yet to come. That's why we're not recognizing him with a degree at the beginning of his presidency.")

The Post's David Ignatius also weighs in, explaining that the prize validates America's return to popularity in the court of world opinion: "The Nobel Peace Prize award to Barack Obama seems so goofy -- even if you're a fan, you have to admit that he hasn't really done much yet as a peacemaker. But there's an aspect of this prize that is real and important -- and that validates Obama's strategy from the day he took office.... America was too unpopular under Bush. The Nobel committee is expressing a collective sigh of relief that America has rejoined the global consensus. They're right. It's a good thing. It's just a little weird that they gave him a prize for it."

Updated 10:02 a.m.
Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele has released a statement calling the award into question:

"The real question Americans are asking is, 'What has President Obama actually accomplished?' It is unfortunate that the president's star power has outshined tireless advocates who have made real achievements working towards peace and human rights. One thing is certain - President Obama won't be receiving any awards from Americans for job creation, fiscal responsibility, or backing up rhetoric with concrete action."

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Maybe: Indecision Art In Obama's White House

The above actually hangs in Obama's White House and no you can't make it up! Click on the title of this post to read the NYTimes article on the art Michelle and Barack have placed in the people's house.

Yippee! We're Number 43!

Click on the image above to enlarge and be further appalled. Way to go, Minnesota. That includes squish Republicans too, thank you.

Hat tip: True North

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Against Trashing Our Opponents

Just because one can does not mean one should: this elemental bit of life's grown up logic appears to have escaped our friends at Minnesota Democrats Exposed (MDE). The blog is well known, infamous in some quarters and widely-read. Consequently we were dismayed to see it post, replete with documents, a story about the equally well known, in some quarters infamous and widely-read liberal blogger Dusty Trice and a domestic assault incident from almost four years ago. Trice later pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct.

Why do this? Trice is not an elected official nor, to MC's knowledge, does he hold any elective office within the DFL. Like everyone else, MC is cognizant of the fact that any shortcoming, mistake or outright screw up will be seized upon and used to destroy and discredit a person running for public office. And we cluck about the lack of good people willing to run for office?

We didn't realize that being an effective blogger also meant that any personal dirt could be aired in a display of appalling moral superiority and breathless (albeit badly written) prose. But here we are. Is there no adult supervision of MDE?

The problem, of course, is that MDE is associated with the current Deputy Chair of the RPM. He stopped blogging when he ran for the office and has not contributed for attribution anything to it since his election. Fairly or not, however, the content of that blog is still associated with him and many believe that nothing this big would be posted without his knowledge or tacit consent. Call it the downside of success.

MC has no way of knowing and isn't laying this particularly odious adventure in trashing at his feet. The people running MDE should rethink what serves their party and their set of ideas, for it is ideas that motivate most of us (yes, even liberals although they haven't had a new one in 50 years). You can't swing a dead cat amongst activists in either party without finding some things most would prefer to keep private. Of course, there was plenty of rumor mongering recently in the race for the RPM endorsement for Governor and a plague upon those houses as well.

MC also knows that not long ago a blogger was ready to run with something on someone on the RPM State Executive Committee from twenty years or more ago. Are we having fun yet? But the blogger was talked out of running the piece on moral, ethical and perhaps even tactical grounds. Who changed that blogger's mind? The Deputy Chair and good for him.

Politics ain't beanbag, we know, we know, but must it be a cesspool? What is more, MC attended the recent RPM convention and heard the Treasurer speak in rather explicit terms about Christ and His blessings upon those proceedings. Leaving aside for the moment that such exclusive deity pandering ought not to happen in a secular political party, we wonder how those who do so square posts like the one at MDE with the teachings they profess to follow. If you do one, you really can't do the other.

Not unless you don't mind being called a hypocrite.

UPDATE: A check of the comments to the MDE post reveals that Trice actually disclosed this matter himself in April and provided links to the court documents! Good god, here we have a non-exclusive being trumpeted as an exclusive and one that should have never run in the first instance. Can we just let the democrats fall apart on their own without self-inflicted wounds like this blog debacle?

Click HERE for the link to the comment.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Horrors: Free Speech On Summit Avenue

A good friend of MC's has put the sign above in her yard on Summit Avenue. Turns out that the tolerance and diversity crowd is now threatening to sue her for . . . .trespassing on their property in order for her to affix it to her hedge. Bring it on!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Happy Birthday Sue Jeffers!

MC doesn't do this often but we couldn't resist when we learned that today is Sue Jeffers' birthday. MC was at the RPM convention today and had a terrific time with party activists. Pictured above right is the better half of MC and left is the birthday girl. Sue gave MC airtime when we were just getting up and started. We haven't forgotten her kindness. She does this for many people in the Minnesota conservative cause. Please join us in wishing her many happy returns of the day.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Blame It On Rio!

We don't usually blog about something that has wall-to-wall media coverage but we couldn't resist once we saw this picture. "The ego has landed," blared Drudge. Indeed.

See you at the candidate forum tonight in St. Paul!

Today Is Gandhi Jayanti; Gandhi's Birthday

In an era of fake celebrity and faux auras, MC remembers one of the most important persons of the last two hundred years. MLK, Jr. was greatly influenced by the Mahatma. Can you imagine race relations unfolding in the 1960's without King's voice for nonviolence? MC is happy to admit America's debt to Gandhi.

The photo above? These were the sum total of his possessions at the time of his assassination.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

China: Seventy Million Dead In Sixty Years

MC is sickened the Empire State building was lit in the colors of the murderous Chinese regime. Watching the "celebrations" of the founding of the People's Republic we wondered how many Americans under 40 had any idea of its murderous history? We reprint below in full the statement issued by the Visual Artists Guild and encourage readers to click on the title of this post to go to its website:

Memorial to the victims of 60 years of Peoples Republic of China

On October 1, 1949, Mao Zedong announced the founding of the Peoples Republic of China.

Today, on the eve of the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Peoples Republic of China, we mourn the deaths of 70 million Chinese who died in the greatest genocide of human history.

We mourn those killed during the violent days of land redistribution when people were agitated into murderous frenzies against their fellow human beings labeled as being landowners, rich peasants and bourgeoisie.

We remember those intellectuals who answered the call of the Hundred Flowers Movement to speak freely about their government only to find that they were trapped during the anti-rightist campaign that followed.

We demand the release of all Political Prisoners.

We mourn the 38 million men, women and children who died in the greatest man-made famine in human history as a result of the wanton disregard of human lives under Mao during the Great Leap Forward.

We mourn the millions who died during the Cultural Revolution.

We mourn the millions who were tortured and died in the laogai labor camps.

We mourn the deaths of the Buddhists, Taoists, Tibetans, Catholics, Protestants, Falun Gong practitioners, Uyghur Muslims, and many others who were persecuted and died when they struggled for their right to freedom of religion.

We mourn those who were slaughtered during the Tiananmen Massacre and the subsequent executions which followed.

We grieve with their families.

70 million human beings perished.

Such intentional behavior by the government of the Peoples Republic of China in the treatment of its citizens must not continue in the 21st century.

We demand for the people of the Peoples Republic of China their rights to Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Press, Freedom of Religion and all other Freedoms as stated in the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights.

We demand the release of all Prisoners of Conscience.

We demand that China's history record an official apology from its government for past transgressions against 70 million human beings and their families.

We look forward to a peaceful and prosperous China whose citizens will live in a nation that respects basic human rights and respects the inherent dignity of human life that all people deserve.