"You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: when men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows. You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours." -Sir Charles Napier
BigEarth of New Mexico sez, The warmest places in hell are reserved for those who, in times of great national moment, reserve their neutrality.
Bill Whittle's mom sez, If you can’t say anything of deep and meaningful scientific or political import that is not supported by fact, reason, historical precedent and in-depth step-by-step logical analysis then don’t say anything at all!
:: Tuesday, September 30 ::
TOO WESTERN FOR YOU? GO BACK EAST!
A superb comment posted at the last blog just below highlights how Islam is not just not a religion of peace, but much of the time not even a religion of survival. Kashei wrote, "If you can't get it together to not want to die, what kind of civilization are you going to produce?" This was in reference to the media and its informed missing the fact that Amina Lawal conceded she should be stoned if it is the will of Allah.
Another honor killing is reported in England, where a father slit his daughter's throat because she had been seeing a Christian teenager. Ironically, this man had fled Saddam Hussein's Iraq to escape the brutality. Slitting his daughter's throat and stabbing her eleven times must have seemed calm by comparison to what he fled.
In comparison to Amina Lawal's absent sense of survival, this murder victim barricaded herself in the bathroom, indicating she had been influenced by the West as the article reports, or that perhaps there are pockets of Islam that see life this way. It is not likely, however, that Daddam allowed her to choose a different mosque. Quote Orianna Fallaci, "Behind every terrorist there is an Imam." With an estimated 12 such deaths last year in Britain, Scotland Yard is going to have to poison the Muslim nests where this death is being preached and protected.
Where is the feminist outrage? Look in the same place it was when we were eliminating the Taliban in Afghanistan, where for years they treated women like animals. Yet still for the feminist outrage we cannot forget that seven SEVEN! abortion doctors have been murdered since Roe v. Wade over the past three decades.
Google News linked a report mid-yesterday that Amina Lawal was not going to be stoned to death by the Muslim leadership in northern Nigeria for adultery. Rather than overturn her her death sentence as extreme, which I guessed they would do, they overturned her conviction.
That was the right thing to do, considering that the man who impregnated her was found not guilty by the Muslim court a long time ago. Drudge links this report, which covers some of the odd ways they think, or don't think, such as an adultery conviction requiring four witnesses.
Now how exactly are they supposed to find four witnesses to adultery? That problem is solved by the weight give to a man's testimony over a woman's in that situation, reminiscent of how a Muslim's testimony is given multiple value over that of a Christian in areas where Muslims persecute.
The news reports are good to list the things that the ghastly Sharia legal code prohibits: adultery, fornication, stealing, gambling, drunkenness and dancing in public, among other acts. However, none I can find seem to cover where this adultery-as-capital-crime mentality comes from, especially when the man can be aquitted while the woman can be condemned.
There is a Muslim belief that a wife of Muhammed carried a child for two years. A Muslim man can divorce his wife with a phrase, Talak, talak, talak, but the woman must wait two years just in case she is the first in some fourteen hundred years to have the same gestation as the rumored wife of Muhammed.
Senator Hillary Clinton is surprised, surprised! that the Chinese censored her book, Living History, demonstrating that she knows nothing about the Chinese she criticized in her best-selling memoir. Hell, even this website is blocked by the Chinese. Perhaps her ghost-writer should have warned her. I wonder if she's even read the book.
It was Christopher Hitchens who suggested that John Kerry's campaign slogan be "Kerry. Duped by a Dope." The Democrats' persistence at making the President look like a fool, but bitching that he mislead them into war, shows how they will continue to step into their own feces.
Kerry-Clinton, Dumb and Dumber. It's the best match I can think of since Al Franken suggested that Dennis Hopper run with Ross Perot.
:: michael Wednesday, September 24, 2003 [+] ::
I wonder why the cigarette manufactuerers just don't pull their product from that state. They make so little money per pack, not enough to make a public phone call, while the state makes the rest of the money. If the tobacco industry is concerned about the freedom to smoke, why do they allow their products to put so much money into the state that seeks to do away with those freedoms?
Yesterday's blog links a Bruce Bartlett column which criticizes the industry for not fighting smart, but instead giving in to little changes that then get interpreted as admissions of guilt. Just remember that whenever they say they are suing for the public good and especially when they say they are doing it for the children.
:: michael Wednesday, September 24, 2003 [+] ::
:: Tuesday, September 23 ::
The former personal injury lawyer from North Carolina, Senator John Edwards, (Senator What's-his-name, according to James Taranto) has something to do should Rolling Stone decide that hat tricks with Wesley Clark will sell more issues: Today's Bruce Bartlett column describes the attendees of a recent health Conference
In June, the Public Health Advocacy Institute in Boston held a conference on legal approaches to the obesity epidemic. More than 100 lawyers and "consumer advocates" (i.e., left-wing busybodies) heard from prominent veterans of tobacco lawsuits on how to duplicate their success. The goal of the attendees is to make themselves multimillionaires while pretending that their motive is a high-minded concern for public health. It would be laughable if it hadn't already worked so well with the tobacco companies, which not coincidentally, also own many food operations.
It is interesting how the tax-the-rich masses and their cheerleaders will decry conservative opposition to frivolous lawsuits against the manufacturers as protecting the rich, yet they are happy to not only see a class of trial lawyers get rich, but they will even elect them to power.
Overlawyered.com highlights another revenue avenue, (this one for Johnnie Cochrane), and the alliance so needed between trial lawyers and judges with poor judgement.
Capt. Yee, 35, was a command chaplain for I Corps at Fort Lewis, Wash. The Army dispatched him to Cuba to attend to the spiritual needs of a growing number of captured al Qaeda and members of the Taliban, a hard-line Islamic group ousted from power in Afghanistan.
Capt. Yee, of Chinese-American descent, was raised in New Jersey as a Christian. He studied Islam at West Point and converted to Islam and left the Army in the mid-1990s. He moved to Syria, where he underwent further religious training in traditional Islamic beliefs. He returned to the United States and re-entered the Army as an Islamic chaplain. He is said to be married to a Syrian woman.
What the hell was someone doing when they readmitted him to the US Army? He went to Syria for "religious training" and they let him back in? Was he really able to study Islam at West Point?
This again highlights the need to connect people's actions to the things they choose to believe. Is anyone thinking about Marl Fidel Kools, aka Hasan Akbar, who rolled grenades through the front doors of three tents occupied by US soldiers and officers? Akbar was not allowed to go to the first Gulf War due to his religion. (Where's that decision-maker? -he needs to be reinstated.)
Via Damian Penny, a month-old essay makes a good argument about the so-called "right of return" in so-called Palestine. In the essay, writer Yaffa Zilbershats does a good job explaining so-called "International Law," something that many of refer to but don't really know what it is. After that, he makes the case based on the number of years that have passed and the wisdom of the United Nations' leadership.:
The Dayton Peace agreement of 1995, which ended the conflict in Bosnia-Herzegovina, explicitly provides in Annex VI for the right of return of displaced persons. But as opposed to it, when suggesting a solution to the refugee problem in Cyprus, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan distinguished the Cyprus case from that of Bosnia-Herzegovina and explained that restitution and repatriation are not suitable since: "...events in Cyprus happened 30 to 40 years ago and the displaced people... have had to rebuild their lives and their economies during this time."
The Palestinian refugee problem occurred 55 years ago, which means that even current developments in international law would not call for the right of Palestinian refugees to repatriation and/or restitution.
Focus. It is an old question but never asked enough: Why don't the oil-rich Arab nations allow the Palestinian refugees into their countries? An even more interesting question: Why didn't Jordan allow them their own state before the 1967 war, when Jordan owned the West Bank.
This also takes us back to the number one point in "The Palestinians and the Right of Return" by Efraim Karsh in Commentary (May 2001).
Had the Palestinians and the Arab world accepted the Untited Nations resolution of November 29, 1947, calling for the establishment of two states in Palestine, and not sought to subvert it by force of arms, there would have been no refugee problem in the first place.
The once-frightenening Isabel is now the kind of hurricane I grew up with in Wilmington. I kind of wish I were there for it - it would be less stressful than work.
I like the way this guy thinks:
Joe Hardison was prepared to leave his houseboat on Bogue Sound in Morehead City if Isabel had been packing winds of 120 mph or more. But now he figures he'll stay aboard the 35-foot craft and ride it out, as he did Hurricanes Hugo, Fran, Bertha, Bonnie and others whose names he can't even remember.
"We have mullet blows that are that hard," said the 59-year-old air conditioning man, who has stocked the vessel with 120 pounds of ice, 50 gallons of water and a half gallon of rum. "If (the boat) breaks loose, it's going to run aground somewhere. If it does, I'll step off."
Only a half gallon of rum?
Yesterday during a beer break at the usual bar in Asheville, a waiter was overheard saying, "I can't believe people still wear those f*****g beach boy shirts." The men wearing them not Floridians as the server assumed, but were actually the Beach Boys (who are actually from Wisconsin). I have to side with the server, however, those shirts are really bad, worse than Mr. Hardison's mullet blows, and worse than anything the Floridians ever really wear here in Asheville.
:: michael Wednesday, September 17, 2003 [+] ::
:: Tuesday, September 16 ::
WEST COAST - EAST COAST
A client in California who has me staffing an event this week in DC called to ask about the hurricane - do the lights go out, do phones go out, do people go out?
It's all unpredictable - Hurricane Gloria teased us repeatedly and finally went out to sea. Isabel is weaker now but still frightening. Still, Virginia has declared a state of emergency and called out the National Guard.
That's the difference between my client and me. For natural disasters, we on this side have time to buy beer and plywood. He has just enough time to run for a door frame.
THE ACCOUNTABILITY WE HAVE BEEN LOOKING FOR
Organized Black activists and religious groups are publicly condemning and boycotting not South Carolina, but Rapper somebody's offensively named energy drink. Good for them.
Now if we can just get the Imams to be so publicly against Islamic extremism...
Still, it brings to mind an old DeWayne Wickam column, "Can We De-fang the N-Word?" which does a good a job as any covering Chris Rock's famous opinions about the situation between American blacks and the kind of people who make Pimp Juice. "But I hate n-s. It's like our own civil war. On the one side, there's black people. On the other, you've got n-s. The n-s have got to go."
Bill O'Reilly tackled the Pimp Juice problem last night. He had a rather well-spoken someone on the show to explain what they mean and don't mean by the words they use and how they use them with each other, that one calling another "pimp juice", or, for that matter, the n-word, doesn't really mean what the word was meant to mean.
This is again where I say our decline is much rooted in the failure to keep words solidly matched with their definitions. I am sympathetic with George Carlin over the "Seven Dirty Words", however - oh the struggle.
SPEAKING OF IMAMS...
While I still wait for significant voices, Islamic voices, not the President's, to soundly and consistently denounce (and renounce) Islamic extremism, I find this poll entirely unsurprising: Poll finds Americans more suspicious of Islam "It finds that more than a third of Americans surveyed now believe that Islam encourages violence against non-Muslims -- up from 14 percent who felt that way 20 months ago."
Wow - a third of the country seems to understand the definitions of the words of Surah 98:6 in the Qu'ran: Lo! those who disbelieve, among the People of the Scripture and the idolaters, will abide in fire of hell. They are the worst of created beings.
AND ON TO THAT REMAINING TWO-THIRDS
"Returning From Iraq War Not So Simple for Soldiers," reported the NYT last week. A major problem: "Less tolerant of stupid people," Staff Sgt. Matthew E. Jordan of the First Brigade, Third Infantry Division, said bitterly. "Stupid people doing stupid things."
THE NEED TO KEEP FIGHTING
Stupidity was encouraged yesterday by a Ninth Circuit court that, from its lofty perch, declaring that ordinary minority people are stupid and cannot handle the punch ballots of California. Granted, many people in South Florida were stupid, but the long-term, international publicity of what can go wrong with a punch ballot should prevent any informed person from failing to connect the dots, and it does not cost money to be informed.
Before making a final ruling, the Ninth Circuit should have considered, rather, the tendency of Democrats in local election boards to close the door and recount, re-recount, and re-re-recount the ballots until they get the result they want. If only the Ninth Circuit could have extended the deadline for an appeal to the Supreme Court of Florida rather than the one in DC.
Jonah Goldberg explains why we need more Virgos when it comes to the definitions of words, and exhibits at the same time why he should be read every time he writes.
:: michael Wednesday, September 10, 2003 [+] ::
One of the most unnerving new reports recently was that of the pizza delivery guy who claimed to have been forced to rob a bank for the criminals who locked a bomb around his neck. Brian D. Wells was well-known to be modest and to have no concern about money. I know people like this. I don't know how they are going to like life when they have to pay rent in their old age, but they are the types who can live simpler and simpler.
However, Stuart Buck points out that while the dead are almost always eulogized in journalism (the reason I dread the deaths of Clinton and Arafat), Wells' murder was followed by some particular disrespect. Among other things, his landlady was quoted saying this: "I always wondered what would happen to him because he didn't have any goals except being Brian and delivering pizza," Payne added. "By 46 you should have your life in gear, but he didn't mind."
Her specific tactlessness, and the fact that it got press coverage in a paper as big as the Washington Post, suggest something about the way Americans view their lesser-employed. We are not the class-conscious nation that, say, even England still is, but my inner liberal is going to go ahead and make time to read Nickel and Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich.
:: michael Wednesday, September 10, 2003 [+] ::
The Kremlin has introduced a draconian election law which threatens the media with closure if they give details of candidates' personal lives or analyse their policies.
analyse their policies? Will this include merely reporting what candidates say they stand for? You bet - it even happens here. Remember those Christian Coalition voter guides? ...the guides that reported the voting records of incumbent candidates ... and the lawsuits that were filed against the Coalition reporting public information as important as how elected leaders voted?
In the meantime, James Taranto pointed out yesterday how a protest in Chapel Hill was described in the NYT as "raucous" and spanned two blocks. Naturally, at a University considered among the best in the country, a raucous, two-block long protest protested the loss of free speech.
Only in America can someone complain at a "raucous protest" about the suppression of free speech.
Again, it is the lost grip on the established definitions of words that directly contributes to our decline.
The President made a very clever, nearly hidden point. For those who claim he has no command of language, in this reference: "I recognize that not all of our friends agreed with our decision to enforce the Security Council resolutions " was a terrific follow-up to a comment made months ago, that United States policy will not be determined by others.
But it is an even deeper comment on history, that these nations pretend that the Security Council matters while demonstrating by their clear unwillingness to enforce the law that it doesn't matter at all.
Some conservatives are saying the treatment of Miguel Estrada was racist. (Some perhaps use the nonsense term reverse-racist.. but badness is badness.) It's an overused and abused word. In a world where people increasingly don't know or won't go with the established definitions of words, it's a waste of time.
More specifically, the Senate Democrats simply can't have a Hispanic (or a black) setting a good example, and, more seriously, cannot tolerate judges who would not view the Constitution as "living", since they are too lazy to appreciate the legislative process. These are people who wanted a re-vote for the low IQ's of lower Florida but refused to let the Estrada nomination come to a vote -you are not disenfranchised unless you are in the majority.
The suit against McDonald's is dismissed. Would Jared have been called as a defense witness? Would the former personal injury lawyer from North Carolina, Senator John Edwards, have taken the case were he not running for President? Awaiting implications...
James Taranto points out that Robert Musil points out that the former personal injury lawyer from North Carolina, Senator John Edwards, is, according to his aides, very likely to drop out of running for re-election and instead run for president. Retiring from the Senate would finally add that distinguishing and needed note of service to his job history as Senator for North Carolina, which so far has been indistinguishable from a Presidential run.
He might have a chance, Howard Dean will eventually come across as too much.. something, J. Pierre Kerry will be haunted by the fact that he cried today over the sad story of a jobless woman, and the press (especially People Magazine) will remember by that time that Edwards is handsome. Just get Rolling Stone to airbrush a new dick and he's good to go.
Unpersuaded by Edwards' "support" and "honor" of the NAACP boycott of racist South Carolina, I am going to support blacks employed in the tourist and service industry by going to Charleston for the weekend. It's hard to say which sight is more inspiring: the skyline from the roof of the Vendue Inn, or the sight of a C-17 from nearby Charleston Air Force Base flying over.
Well, thank God the Air Force decided not to boycott South Carolina, as the base's economic impact exceeds $400 million annually. As the area's second largest employer, its payroll exceeds $100 million, and indirect payroll, the jobs that wouldn't be there if it weren't for the base, also exceeds $100 million.
This letter by Ron Bird was submitted to the Winston Salem Journal fairly recently. While I think they never printed it, it inspires me to write my own paper again. God knows we need more letters written like this:
Is it just me, or has anyone else noticed
that NC just has one US Senator now?
As soon as Edwards hit Washington, the
Kennedy faction told him that he was
presidential material, and he has been
campaigning non-stop in every state since
then, and has forgotten the Senate and NC.
I really noticed this problem of only one
senator this past Memorial Day. This is
the one day, for sure, that the politicians
come home to make their patriotic
speeches, kiss the babies, and to generally
make as many appearances as possible.
Edwards did all of this, except I noticed
that he was doing it in Arizona!
I hold the Republicans responsible for
giving us Edwards. By wanting to let
an old and tired Lauch Faircloth see
his name one more time on a ballot
in appreciation for his past services,
they blew it big time - particularly
with so many articulate and personable
younger Republicans waiting in-line.
Hopefully, in November, 2004, the people
can let Edwards use the millions of
frequent flyer miles he has accumulated
campaigning all over the country, to
chase after the Kennedys whenever he
Luckily he has recently purchased a $3.8
million dollar home in DC that he is
renovating (for $3.8 million what do
you renovate??), so he will have a
place to live when his term ends. As far
as an income to live on, I guess that he
can just start suing people again.
:: michael Wednesday, September 03, 2003 [+] ::