24 March 2006

Putting The Dem's Complaints In Perspective

And it is of course done once again by the master, VDH .

While he rips into "mistakes made", he also sets the Democrank's Strawman Arguments aflame.

Throughout this postmodern war, the military has been on the horns of a dilemma: DonÂ’t shoot and you are indicted for being lax and allowing lawlessness to spread; shoot and you are gratuitously slandered as a sort of rogue LAPD in camouflage. We hear only of the deliberately inexact rubric "Iraqi civilian losses" -- without any explanation that almost all the Iraqi dead are either (1) victims of the terrorists, (2) Iraqi security forces trying to defend the innocent against the terrorists, or (3) the terrorists themselves.
Legitimate questions arise as to whether America' army is too small, or whether requisite political support for military operations is too predicated on the 24-hour news cycle. But all those are issues transcending the war in Iraq. In retrospect, up-armoring humvees would have been wise from the very outset -- so would having something remotely comparable to a Panzerfaust in 1943, more live than dud torpedoes in 1942, or deploying a jet at the beginning of the Korean War that could compete with a Russian Mig 15.
So again, the proper question is not whether there were tragic errors of judgment in Iraq -- but to what degree were they qualitatively different from past errors that are the stuff of war, to what degree were they addressed and corrected, and to what degree did their commission impair the final verdict of the mission?

Nothing in this war is much different from those of the past. We have fought suicide bombers in the Pacific. Intelligence failures doomed tens of thousands -- not 2,300 -- at the Bulge and Okinawa. We pacified the Philippines through counterinsurgency fighting. Failure to calibrate the extent of Al Zarqawi's insurrection pales before the Chinese crossing of the Yalu.

Syria is out of Lebanon -- but only as long as democracy is in Iraq. Libya and Pakistan have come clean about nuclear trafficking -- but only as long as the U.S. is serious about reform in the Middle East.

Read the whole thing, and continue to be amazed at the brilliance that is VDH.

22 March 2006

So Let Me Get This Straight

A new study claims a child's personality reveals whether he or she will grow up to be a liberal or a conservative.
The conclusions of UC Berkeley professor Jack Block found that whiny, insecure children are most likely to become conservatives, while confident, resilient, self-reliant children are generally liberals.

Now lets look at some facts shall we?

Some Adult Liberals

Cindy Sheehan
Al Franken
Barbra Streisand
George Clooney
Markos Moulitsas Zúniga
James Carville

Some Adult Conservatives

George W. Bush
Rush Limbaugh
Ben Stein
Victor Davis Hanson
Laura Ingraham
Michelle Malkin
Need I say any more?

Time To Think About The Welfare State

Today in the WSJ , American Enterprise Institute writer Charles Murray has a short publication on "A Plan to Replace the Welfare State".
I love the idea of limited government and lowered spending for the entitlement programs that the government runs, this piece has some great ideas that will never be accepted!
They call it THE PLAN. Not the most ambitious name for a total reworking of the current Social Security and Health Care Lobby system that we have now, or that some want us to have down the road, but the name is not the important part.
It all starts with this point:

Instead of sending taxes to Washington, straining them through bureaucracies and converting what remains into a muddle of services, subsidies, in-kind support and cash hedged with restrictions and exceptions, just collect the taxes, divide them up, and send the money back in cash grants to all American adults. Make the grant large enough so that the poor won't be poor, everyone will have enough for a comfortable retirement, and everyone will be able to afford health care. We're rich enough to do it.

Mr Murray then goes thru a series of steps of what to do with those grants to ensure a comfortable retirement, good heath care benefits and then any other things that a person could use the grants for.
The focus of the piece besides getting a debate going on entitlements, is I think to get a debate going on personal accountability.
See these great lines:

The Plan confers personal accountability whether the recipient wants it or not
The Plan confers responsibility for dealing with human needs on all of us, whether we want it or not.
Please read and discuss amongst yourselves.

But I Thought I Hated Ivy League Pretentiousness?

If you look to the right side of the page you will see a link to something called, why? Because you see Heidi works there and the University honchos don't want to spend the money need to improve the the facility, so they want to lease out the building and the name to Barnes & Noble.
Now most people who know me will say, but I thought you liked corporation capitalism?
I do, but this is not the place for it.
College bookstores are not just there to turn profits, especially when said bookstore is the only large scale independent bookstore in the area.
Now I love Borders, I shop there all the time, and I haven't bought as many books from Brown recently as I used to, but that has more to do with the things that need to be fixed, not the store itself.
Too many old books are on the shelves leaving them no room for newer books.
The space is cramped because the building need renovations.
These are things that the University should fix, not sell off to a corporation that doesn't give a rat's hairy.
So if you like independent bookstores log on and sing up.
If you don't go away.

Socialism Remains A Failure

In France the students are revolting, and they are protesting too.

Prime Minister Dominique (who is a man) de Villepin rammed a law thru the National Assembly that was supposed to help French youth get full time employment. This law would allow employers to fire, without giving a reason, any employee under the age of 26. So this safety valve for the employer would encourage them to hire resent college graduates.
This view from the AP:
(B)ut critics say it gives younger workers less job security and undermines France's generous labor protections.
Bolstered by support from trade unions, students led a new protest Tuesday, marching across the Left Bank and shouting "It's the street that rules!"

You see when faced with
Job competition from emerging markets _ the government's key argument for the new law _ is far from most students' minds. Their leaders say French workers cannot accept longer hours and lower pay on par with Asian economies.

Oh My G-d! We can't change the dead system, let's just play around with small parts of it. Oh wait, we can't even do that because
"It's the street that rules!"

France is circling the euroloo.

And these are the people that Jean Phraude Kerrie want us to listen to when it came to foreign affairs.

21 March 2006

Christopher Hitchens Does It Again

Is the Iraqi Civil War a construct of al-Qaeda?
Chris Hitchens believes so and proves it here.

It starts with this bit of news:
In February 2004, our Kurdish comrades in northern Iraq intercepted a courier who was bearing a long message from Abu Musab al-Zarqawi to his religious guru Osama bin Laden. The letter contained a deranged analysis of the motives of the coalition intervention ("to create the State of Greater Israel from the Nile to the Euphrates" and "accelerate the emergence of the Messiah"), but also a lethally ingenious scheme to combat it. After a lengthy and hate-filled diatribe against what he considers the vile heresy of Shiism, Zarqawi wrote of Iraq's largest confessional group that: "These in our opinion are the key to change. I mean that targeting and hitting them in their religious, political and military depth will provoke them to show the Sunnis their rabies . . . and bare the teeth of the hidden rancor working in their breasts. If we succeed in dragging them into the arena of sectarian war, it will become possible to awaken the inattentive Sunnis as they feel imminent danger."

And ends with this great line:

There is a war within the war, as there always is when a serious struggle is under way, but justice and necessity still combine to say that the task cannot be given up.

Read the whole thing please.

20 March 2006

The Michael "Meathead" Stivic Of The Week Award

Why haven't I nominated Rob "I'm Meathead" Reiner yet?
Don't worry he's up for one this week and for every week until the California elections are over.
When questioned about spending money from one state agency that he heads to run adds to add another state agency (and taxes) on the people of California he said the following:
he has yet to see the ads or read a 2002 memo that outlined a strategy to convince Californians to support the concept of universal preschool.
"Should I resign? Of course not. Of course not," Reiner said. "Because everything I've done is completely legal."

So he authorized the spending of monies for a ballot prop, but he never looked at what the money was used for? YEA RIGHT!

Also this week:
Richard Belzer "comedian/actor (both terms used VERY loosely)
From Newsbusters: (h/t Fox News Weekend)

When Congresswoman Ileanna Ros-Lehtinen contended Friday night, on HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher, that servicemen she's met in Iraq are 'saying 'we're proud of our mission, we know what we're doing over here. We don't want you guys in Washington to lose it over there,' actor/comedian Richard Belzer condescendingly fired back, claiming that to 'ask them' is 'bullshit' since, apparently unlike him, 'they don't read twenty newspapers a day.' Ros-Lehtinen cited the knowledge of her Marine officer stepson, but Belzer, who plays Detective John Munch on NBC's Law & Order: SVU, retorted: ' Doesn't mean he's a brilliant scholar about the war because he's there.' A quite agitated Ros-Lehtinen sputtered: "Oh, you are though! You are though? Okay." To which Belzer affirmed: "Well I have more time...' Host Bill Maher interjected that Belzer's point was that a 9-year-old is in the army because he probably couldn't find other employment." The Republican Congresswoman from Florida countered that her stepson is a college graduate, leading Belzer to snidely denigrate the military: "You think everyone over there is a college graduate? They're 19 and 20-year-old kids who couldn't get a job. Ros-Lehtinen mocked him: "Yeah, you know because you've been there." Belzer rudely lashed back: "What, I don't f***ing read!? Don't do that!" He went on to argue: "It's this patronizing thing that people have about if you're against the war everyone's lumped together. You know, the soldiers are not scholars, they're not war experts." That was too much for host Bill Maher: "You're going to lose even me...

Some thoughts on that exchange:
First: I've very surprised that Bill Maher had some one as conservative and smart as Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen on his ego trip show.
Second: Well it all depends on which 20 newpapers you read, now don't it?
Third:Who has time to read more then one newspaper when you're in a war zone?
Fourth: Notice there was no mention of Blogs from Iraq or MilBlogs. Those dumb 19 - 20 year olds can harldy point a gun the right way, much less use a tool of the digital media, not the inkstained fishwrap.
Fifth: Man I hope Belzer takes all those newspapers to the recycling plant in his SUV every week.