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Molly Caves

Molly Norris, the cartoonist whose poster promoting “Everybody Draw Muhammed Day” on May 20th caused such a stir, has called it quits.

Her home page today shows the following statement:

I make cartoons about current, cultural events. I made a cartoon of a fictional ’poster’ entitled “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day!” with a nonexistent group’s name — Citizens Against Citizens Against Humor — drawn on the cartoon. It was in specific response to the recent censoring of a South Park episode, a desire to bring home the importance of the first amendment. I did not intend for my cartoon to go viral. I did not intend to be the focus of any ’group’. This particular cartoon has struck a gigantic nerve, something I was totally unprepared for.

Personally I can feel afraid of Muslims because I really have no idea if in their hearts they hate non-Muslims. There are so many interpretations of the religion that I hear told — sometimes it is a very extreme translation (that’s the scary part, the radicals that believe that Westerners should die), then at other times it sounds more peaceful.

I hope for the sake of this country that moderate Muslims will speak out with everyone else against any violent members of that or any other religion. That way I would know that there is a difference. Maybe this cartoon I made, this fictional poster of “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day!” had such a wildfire effect because it is finally time for Muslims and non-Muslims to understand one another more.

I am going back to the drawing table now!


I feel for Molly. She clearly wasn’t ready for all the fame and noteriety that her seemingly (to her) innocuous move made for herself. But there’s something disturbing about her tone here. Unlike many people, including my fellow bloggers and many commenters, sensitivity to cultural differences doesn’t seem to be Molly’s reason for pulling back.

There is clearly a tone of fear in what she’s done. Perhaps she’s simply an introvert and publicity gives her the creeps. Many artists are like that. But my instincts tell me that she’s actually caved because she fears genuinely for her safety.

It’s ironic, and a shame, for this to be the case. Those of us who have taken up this cause did so to mitigate such threats. As Mark Steyn so aptly put it:

If you want to put bounties on all our heads, you better have a great credit line at the Bank of Jihad. If you want to kill us, you’ll have to kill us all.

Fortunately for the First Amendment and other American values, the cause presses on, even without Molly: Citizens Against Citizens Against Humor.

Sometimes you choose to be an icon for unapologietic defense of Free Speech. Sometimes you have it thurst upon you.

-Nick (ColoradoPatriot, from HQ)

Another Group Comes Out For DADT Repeal

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 2:30 am - April 27, 2010.
Filed under: DADT (Don't Ask, Don't Tell),Gays In Military

The nation’s largest lawyers group has has officially come out against “Don’t ask, don’t tell,” the 1993 law that forbids openly gay people from serving in the military“:

In three separate letters Monday to both chambers of Congress and the Department of Defense, the American Bar Association [ABA] called for an end to DADT and offered legal assistance in drafting a new policy. . . .

[ABA President Carolyn] Lamm notes that Americans don’t have a fundamental right to serve in the military, but writes that “there is no sufficient reason in our view to continue to deprive these men and women of the opportunity to serve their country and to deprive the nation of their talent and skill.”

Very well said, Ms. Lamm.  Nice to see her acknowledge that this is not an issue of fundamental rights.  And while I agree these gay men and women who want to serve and are otherwise qualified to do so should have the opportunity to serve, I also think we need point out the national security aspect of repeal, that by limiting the pool from which military recruiters can draw, we limit the number of able bodied Americans who can serve.

Simply put, the ban deprives the military of thousands of men and women eager to serve, to risk their lives to defend the nation that we all love.

Mr. President, with the ABA coming out for repeal, it’s clear a consensus is building for you to keep your campaign promise.  Please tell us your press secretary misspoke when he said the Administration had no intention to push DAT repeal this year.  The time for action is now.

What if they had a violent protest & the MSM didn’t raise a ruckus?

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 1:41 am - April 27, 2010.
Filed under: Hysteria on the Left,Liberal Hypocrisy,Media Bias

Recall all the bellyaching in the press about the mean-spirited, racist violence Tea Party protests?  Or how leading Democratic politicians warning how opponents of the big government initiatives of the Obama Administration assembling peaceably, petitioning the Government for a redress of grievances might, by their actions, be promoting violence.

Well, there’s been some violent protests recently and they’re not causing those once hyperventilating pundits and politicians to wag their fingers in pontificating mode:

Violence broke out at a political demonstration over the weekend, as protesters chased police officers, pelting them with rocks and bottles. Was this a gang of Tea Partiers running amok, as eagerly awaited by so many liberals? Well, no. The demonstration was at the state capitol in Arizona, against that state’s new immigration statute:

Jim Hoft doesn’t “expect these violent acts to get much press./After all, they’re not conservative and they’re not at a tea party rally.”

These folks have even festooning “the state Capitol with swastikas — swastikas! — made of refried beans and are planning legal action to block the law  from taking effect.

Roger Kimball expects “The New York Times, MSNBC, CNN, and kindred media outlets

. . . to repudiate these new outbreaks of hate and racist incitements to violence, narrow-mindedness, bigotry, etc., etc. Look for it tomorrow on the Daily KOS and other web sites dedicated to rooting out irrational prejudice and exposing the sore losers who don’t understand that elections have consequences and who won’t give a new law a chance but who divisively call for the repeal of the will of the people.

(H/t for the Kimball quotes:  Instapundit.)

UPDATE:  Mary Katharine Ham remembers . . .

…when Nazi symbolismvandalismnasty signsmisspelled signs, violence, and arrests at protests (even without proof) would have delegitimized an entire movement and caused months of media coverage about the threat to the Republic posed by such barbarians? These are different times, now.

In identity politics pitch, Obama leaves gays* out

Don’t have much time today to check the gay blogs and websites of gay organizations, but I’m sure they’re all in an uproar today about the president’s pitch to his base in anticipation of 2010 elections.

At Politico, Ben Smith observes:

Obama speaks with unusual demographic frankness about his coalition in his appeal to “young people, African-Americans, Latinos, and women who powered our victory in 2008 [to] stand together once again.”

Ed Morrissey notes that Obama left out a few groups: “Well, at least we know who the DNC doesn’t want around in the midterms by subtraction: older white and Asian men.”  He also left out gay people.

Wonder what Joe Solmonese has to say about this.

*NB: Changed the title because initial title was inaccurate; gays weren’t the only group the Democrat neglected.

National Security Advisor’s Joke “that borders on anti-Semitic”

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 3:23 pm - April 26, 2010.
Filed under: Obama Watch

In an administration not known for its commitment to our staunchest ally in the Middle East, it’s not a wise move for the National Security Advisor, himself not known as a friend to the Jewish State, to crack a joke bordering on anti-Semitic.  But, with such a joke did President Obama’s National Security Advisor James Jones lead him his address last week to the Washington Institute For Near East Policy.

Asking whether the joke (which he includes in his post) was anti-Semitic, Yid with Lid offers:

Well, the White House must have thought so. The White House transcript sent to reporters after the event conveniently began a couple of minutes into the speech. The video of the event posted on the Washington Institute Web site started right after the Joke, you can even hear the end of the laughter.

At the very least it was an idiotic time and place to make the joke. Many of the attendees of The Washington Institute dinner were in fact Jewish. And the Jewish community is very nervous about the recent anti-Israel leanings of the Obama administration.

The Anchoress agrees:

All-in-all, I’d call it a very unwise joke for a security advisor to The American President to make, especially if the president is trying to convince the nation -by his words more than his actions- that he supports capitalism and the free market, the existence of Israel and the defeat of the Taliban.

The truth is the joke would have been inappropriate under any president; the White House and its administrators should never be in the business of laughing at anyone but themselves, because other-directed humor signals insecurity; self-denigrating humor does the opposite.

Noting that Jones has apologized, Jennifer Rubin offers:

Let’s unpack this. First of all, I don’t believe the joke was made up on the spur of the moment. That’s not how these things work. As a reader pointed out to me, it’s quite likely that not only Jones but also a speechwriter or two thought there was nothing much wrong with this. Second, for an administration under criticism for insensitivity or outright animus in relation to Israel, why play with fire? If nothing else, this confirms the criticism of Jones — he’s a bit of a buffoon. (more…)

Why I’m Skeptical of a Dodd-Drafted Banking Bill

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 3:00 pm - April 26, 2010.
Filed under: Big Government Follies,Congress (111th)

Given my focus on my dissertation, I have not had time to review the provisions in (or presumed to be in) the Banking Bill which outgoing U.S. Senator Christopher Dodd (D-Connecticut) had been drafting and championing.  Now, naturally, I’m skeptical of anything put forward by a career politician, a man who was first elected to Congress before the president entered high school, a man who has neither created wealth nor fostered innovation.

It seems that for folks like Mr. Dodd, “reform” means regulation, increasing the size and scope of the federal government, as if that would be the panacea to our economic woes.  And regulation favors the folks that Dodd and his Democrats so regularly decry, big banks and big companies.  They simply have more resources to comply.

Referencing those familiar with the actual legislation, the Washington Examiner’s Timothy P. Carney pretty much sums it up:

Big Business can adapt to more regulation better than small business can. Politico reported last week that the big banks “have the legal resources to deal with a consumer agency.”

Carney cites this report over at Big Government:

Many of those familiar with the banking industry, overall, say that community banks bore little to no responsibility, on balance, for the financial meltdown that occurred in 2008.  Nonetheless, an analysis of the Dodd bill indicates that if it passes, community banks will be subject to a whopping 27 new regulations that one individual who has worked with banks professionally and is closely tracking the legislation says “could threaten to put many community bankers out of business, thus reducing competition in the banking sector overall, and diminishing consumer choices.”

To folks like Dodd, regulation is the answer.  But, to those familiar with the industry, regulation may well exacerbate the problem.  What was it the Gipper said?

The New York Times Spin on Economic Recovery

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 1:36 pm - April 26, 2010.
Filed under: Economy,Media Bias

Last night just before bed, I caught (via Drudge) an article in the New York Times that while it shows the Old Gray Lady’s bias does show that she still remains a source for news.  Peter S. Goodman does his best to paint a rosy picture of a booming economy, roaring back to life under Obama’s policy.  Yet, even as he paints this pretty picture, he acknowledges that not all is not as hunky-dory as the title and opening paragraphs suggest.

Just as Goodman cites economists who favor the Times‘ worldview, Glenn Reynolds reminds us that some economists are telling us, “The stimulus didn’t help.” Compare this:

The recovery is picking up steam as employers boost payrolls, but economists think the government’s stimulus package and jobs bill had little to do with the rebound, according to a survey released Monday.

And this from the Times report:

Still, much of the improvement appears the result of the nearly $800 billion government stimulus program. As that package is largely exhausted late this year, further expansion may hinge on whether consumers keep spending. That probably depends on the job market, which remains weak.

It’s as if Goodman were oblivious to business cycles.  Anyone who took Economics 101 knew there’d be a recovery, with questions remaining as to when it would start, how long it would last and how strong it would be.  And to his credit, Goodman addresses some of those questions:

While few dispute signs of recovery across much of the economy, significant debate remains on how robust and sustained it will be. The lingering effects of the financial crisis have some economists envisioning a long stretch of sluggish growth. . . .

Since the end of World War II, the first year after a recession tends to feature growth at roughly twice the pace of the decline during the downturn, implying a current pace exceeding 7 percent. Yet even optimistic economists assume the economy is growing at perhaps half that rate.

While Goodman may indeed have found signs of life in Portland, Oregon, if he took a drive around Los Angeles, he wouldn’t see a roaring economy, but a lot of vacant store fronts with “Available” or “For Rent” Signs replacing creative displays of quirky consumer goods.

I’d have a lot more respect for the Old Gray Lady if she just acknowledged her bias.

Watching The Odyssey, Appreciating The Lord of the Rings

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 2:50 am - April 26, 2010.
Filed under: Movies/Film & TV,Mythology and the real world

As I begin to write the chapter which will certainly anchor my dissertation, considering the role the goddess Athene plays in the Odyssey, how she helps effect, what some scholars have called, the only real character transformation in Homer, the growth of Telemachus from a Mama’s Boy to his father’s son, I have tracked down online cheap copies of the two most famous screen adaptations of the epic.

I came away gravely disappointed, the more recent a 1997 TV adaptation far worse than the 1954 Kirk Douglas version.  And the former despite excellent realizations of Penelope and Anticleia by Greta Scacchi and Irene Papas respectively.

In the 1950s version, Kirk Douglas played the role he always seemed to play in that era (at least through Spartacus), the self-confident hero, ever smiling, rarely faltering, always declaiming, never wavering.  It was from this adaptation that I first learned about the Odyssey, having caught it on TV as a boy and remembering most clearly the scene with the Cyclops (which I loved) and forgetting nearly everything else.  Back then, it had seemed so real, I was all but certain Cyclops (Cyclopses?) existed.

And yet now, when I watched it last week, so familiar with the epic, I just couldn’t believe Douglas as the long-suffering Odysseus.  But, he at least had a more expressive face than Armand Assante, the actor who would realize the role in the more recent version.  That Italo-American actor hardly changed his expression through the flick, always dour, never determined.  He showed no none of the warm tears Homer described, when he was finally reunited with his son.

When he arrives on Ithaca, the home for which he had longed for two full decades, his face was unmoved.  No goddess was there to greet him on the shore as the owl-eyed Olympian welcomed the real Odysseus now over three thousand years ago.  Nor did she disguise him before he approached the hut of his loyal swineherd Eumeaus.  He just waltzed right in and started taking food.  Instead of sympathizing with his plight, I wanted the swineherd to slit his throat. (more…)

Obama: Playacting at Bipartisanship

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 10:51 pm - April 25, 2010.
Filed under: Congress (111th),Dishonest Democrats

While the tone of Robert Kuttner’s piece in the Huffington Post breathes contempt for Republicans and betrays a great misunderstanding of popular opinion, particularly in the Bay State, his title gives the game away about the real modus operandi of the Obami: Obama Rejects Bipartisan Bank Deal.

Yup, they’re the ones rejecting bipartisanship.

The Democrat’s campaign rhetoric notwithstanding, he’s not interesting in working with Republicans.  President Obama never was, provided such work meant incorporating Republican ideas into  the overall structure of his legislative initiatives.  Yeah, sure, just like his rhetoric, he’ll throw in a few minor Republican ideas as window-dressing to call it bipartisan, but when he works out his deals, he works with the most hyperpartisan Democrats in Congress, those known for their contempt for conservatives and their commitment to big government policies.

Kuttner writes:

Although Senate Banking Committee Chair Chris Dodd and his sometime Republican ally Richard Shelby continued to make noises on the Sunday talk shows about a possible bipartisan deal, both President Obama and House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank have personally urged Dodd not to cut a deal with Republicans. I asked Frank point blank why Dodd would want such a deal, and he said–on the record–“I have no idea, but both President Obama and I have urged him not to.”

This is a welcome sign that Obama realizes that public opinion is moving in the direction of tougher banking reform, and that he learned from the health debate that bipartisan compromise on key reform issues is a snare and a delusion. 

Yeah, of course, Barney doesn’t want to cut a deal with Republicans.  Barney doesn’t like Republicans.  You know, he kind of blames them for everything.

And this snare and delusion?  It’s all in Obama’s rhetoric, trying to trap Republicans by pretending he’s some magnanimous figure while obscuring his liberal record and beliefs.  Kuttner can spin it however he wants, but he does admit at least that the Democrat is the one putting the kibosh on bipartisan reform.  Just like he did with health care.

David Frum, are you paying attention?

“Gay Dog” Barred from Restaurant

Oh come on… like I COULD make this stuff up! (h/t – Mark Steyn)

An Adelaide restaurant that refused a blind man entry because a waiter thought his guide dog was “gay” has been ordered to apologise and pay compensation.

Ian Jolly was told he could not take guide dog Nudge into the Thai Spice last May because a member of staff objected, The Sunday Mail reported.

The restaurant’s owners said a misunderstanding had arisen between Jolly’s female companion and a waiter who understood the woman “to be saying she wanted to bring a gay dog into the restaurant”.

“The staff genuinely believed that Nudge was an ordinary pet dog which had been desexed to become a gay dog,” the owners said in a statement to South Australia’s Equal Opportunity Tribunal.

The tribunal on Friday ordered the restaurant to pay Jolly $1500 and offer him a written apology for discriminating against him on the grounds of disability.

Actually, I’d like to find out this technique to “desex” a dog and make it a “gay dog”.  I actually think there is a business opportunity here….

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

Republicans Shut Out From LGBT “Leadership” Town Hall;
SLDN Shut Out from Key White House Meetings on DADT

If I did not, on occasion, check Pam Spaulding’s blog, I would have been unaware that Michelangelo Signorile had hosted a LGBT Leadership Townhall meeting on Thursday afternoon (EST).  Well, it’s probably for the best, given that of the seven speakers (counting Signorile), none were Republicans.  If the organizers of this town hall had wished to accurately reflect the diversity of our community, they would have included at least two Republicans on the panel.

In a post on the summit, Pam reports how she took HRC President Joe Solmonese to task

over his definitive statement at the HRC Carolinas dinner that DADT will be repealed in 2010. . . .  He couldn’t unring the bell, so his position now is he still believes, not knows, it will be repealed, which clearly isn’t what he’s been telling donors.

Kudos to Pam for (yet again) exposing how the HRC head bends over backwards to please his Democratic Party patrons.  Here’s the real news that came out of the summit:

. . .  SLDN has been put in the dog house by the admin because it has been openly critical of the manipulation going on. It’s looking petty and juvenile, in my opinion. Leaving SLDN out of meetings with Jim Messina regarding DADT is ludicrous, so HRC was the “good, compliant gay org” invited. Don’t you remember Obama asking people to challenge him to do the right thing? Well, look what it got SLDN.

Now, Pam and I don’t agree about too much, but it seems we both hold SLDN in pretty high regard.  And yet, the White House, until very recently as per another Pam post, has shut them out merely for standing up for the principles and asking the president on a promise he made as a candidate.  Seems this Administration shows its pettiness even to its erstwhile supporters.

In this post, Pam offers a roundup of reaction to the summit, including this from Kevin Naff’s editorial in the DC Agenda, “HRC, Solmonese in the hot seat“:

There were plenty of barbs sent Solmonese’s way, including a pointed question from Get Equal’s Robin McGehee, who asked if Solmonese and HRC’s David Smith would resign if key LGBT legislative priorities are not achieved this year.  Solmonese responded that his continued employment is up to the HRC board. (Note from Pam -Joe has apparently opened the door for the LGBT community to give the board independent feedback on his performance)

It is too bad gay leaders can hold onto their jobs even in the absence of real accomplishments.  Well, as one less conservatively inclined gay friend once replied when I asked him to detail HRC’s accomplishments, “They do raise a lot of money.”

Is PR Always to Blame for Obama’s Failures?

Jennifer Rubin has a great post today which really gets at the failure of the president’s so-called “smart diplomacy” in the Middle east.  The problem is not their policies, you see, but  that they just need “some more PR. Because it is always about a PR deficiency and never a policy problem with this gang.”

I think the root problem of the Obama officials goes back to the 1980s.  Back then, few of the smart set could accept the success of Ronald Reagan’s policies and the popularity of the man himself, so they decided the “amiable dunce” (as one of their number dubbed him) could attribute his amiability and achievements not to his ideas or policies, but his means of expressing them.

Now, I’ll grant there’s something to that.  The Gipper was better able to communicate conservative ideas than was Barry Goldwater.  But, that doesn’t mean the ideas themselves were unpopular.  I mean, even today, with lackluster Republican leadership, the Gipper’s ideas as gaining greater currency as both Gallup and Pew polls have shown.

So, ignoring polling data about popular attitudes toward big government, Administration officials hold to their assumption that because they support a greater role for the federal government, the American people must also support big government–if Obama could only communicate his vision as did the Gipper did.  Or, as in the case Rubin presented, because we support this Middle East policy, it must be a good one, even if it that policy promotes no progress.

And the same people faulted the incumbent’s predecessor for his stubbornness.

RELATED: Krauthammer: Obama may be president, but he’s not “the arbiter of American political discourse”.

Will Democrats Differentiate Themselves from Hate Speech in Oregon?

By the Barney Frank standard, proof continues to emerge that Democratic critics of Sarah Palin countenance name-calling.  Don’t think the unhappy Massachusetts Democrat (or any Democrat for that matter) has “differentiated” himself from the angry signs that greeted the arrival of the former Alaska Governor in Eugene, Oregon:

To the woman carrying sign dubbing your burg a “Hate-Free Zone,” I wonder why you’re not faulting the person standing right behind you hoisting a “Hope She Chokes” Sign.  Seems kind of hateful to wish death on someone.

But, I’m sure that irony escapes here because these leftists seem to think that hate comes from one side only.

Via Gateway Pundit who has more including this, these folks “need to concentrate more on spelling and less on indoctrination“.

UPDATE:  Commenting on this picture, Ed Morrissey offers:

It’s a darned good thing that the person holding the sign that says, “Hope she chokes” (with the Obama logo a nice touch, by the way) is doing so in Eugene’s “hate-free zone.”  Why, if someone had displayed a sign at a Tea Party rally that said something about our President choking, it would have been declared a symptom of the violence inherent in the conservative system, with apologies to Dennis the Peasant.  

Pretty much sums it up.

Bush-bashing as artistic genre

Over at his blog, our pal Sonicfrog does a great job taking apart a New York Times review of the Broadway show, “American Idiot,” and speculates that the reviewer may have so loved the piece because the eponymous idiot is the immediate past president of the United States:

The good ol’ days. Back when it was OK to hate the President. Of course, bashing Bush was not exactly edgy or breaking new ground by the time “American Idiot” came out – Dixie Chicks, Keith Olberman, and Rosie “fire has never melted steel” O’Donnell had already blazed that trail. What makes the Green Day album notable was not the music – I doubt many could name a single song from the album, or hum one of the tunes – but the fact that the anti-Bush sentiment was marketed so prominently as a feature of the album. I know the “American Idiot” album won a Grammy, but does anyone really think it would have been nearly as successful if it wasn’t an exercise in Bush bashing?

He concludes:

But I find it hard to believe that a musical based on such shallow material could lift itself to the heights that this critic portends. I find it sad that the material that this is based on is the best they could do when deciding to produce a rock opera of this nature.

Now, I don’t know as much about the distinctions in musical genres as does our “amphibian” friend, so encourage you to read the post where he questions reviewer Charles Isherwood’s understanding of contemporary music (and other things). (more…)

Draw Mohammed, May 20th

After having dilligently scrubbed through all the posts here in the past three days so as to not run afoul of our intrepid readers ;-), I submit likely one of the most useful things to come from Dan Savage in about a decade. (Not that I don’t like his stuff, but rarely is he this good.)

Over at The Stranger, Dan asks his readers (and I ask ours) to join him for “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day” on May 20th in support of my fellow Centennial StatesmenTrey Parker and Matt Stone: (more…)

Catholic League: “Not All Gay Sex Is Abusive”

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 4:08 am - April 24, 2010.
Filed under: Gays & religion

When I saw that headline on Memeorandum, naturally my curiosity was piqued as I was delighted to see this Catholic organization acknowledging what the Greeks had figured out at least since Plato’s time — and other cultures certainly acknowledged well before that.

In this short release, Catholic League president Bill Donohue merely takes issue with the New York Times for calling a twenty-year sexual relationship between a young man and a priest abusive.  The Old Gray Lady detailed a gay romance ” between Chilean priest Fr. Fernando Karadima, now 79, and Dr. James Hamilton, now 44.”  Donahue elaborates:

According to the Times, it all started with a kiss. Let me be very clear about this: if some guy tried to kiss me when I was 17, I would have flattened him. I most certainly would not go on a retreat with the so-called abuser, unless, of course, I liked it. Indeed, Hamilton liked it so much he went back for more—20 years more. Even after he got married, he couldn’t resist going back for more.

So what about the priest? He is a disgrace. Throw the book at him for all I care. But let’s not be fooled into thinking that Dr. Hamilton is a victim. The real news story here is not another case of homosexual molestation, it’s the political motivation of the New York Times.

I gotta agree with the general thrust of his argument. Hamilton is not a victim, not if he, willingly, over a period of two decades, returned to the priest for continued intimate contact.

All that said, what the priest did when Hamilton was 17 was clearly wrong.  But, Hamilton is no saint.  That he would carry on even after getting married suggested a man clueless as to the meaning of his vows.  And that applies to the priest as well (as per the meaning of his vows.)

But, to call Hamilton a victim after he reached the age of maturity, would be to suggest that any man who engages in a relationship illicit or licit for that matter with another man is by dint of participating in said relationship incapable of exercising sound judgment.

SEC Officials Watch Porn on the Job, Barney Blames Republicans

If Barney Frank were a Republican who responded to every question by blaming Democrats, he would become a punching bag for those in the mainstream media.  But, it’s only we right-of-center bloggers who notice the non-answers and mean-spirited rhetoric that this unhappy Massachusetts Democrat offer whenever he’s asked a question not ready made for his left-wing talking points.  He just goes ahead and attacks Republicans, oftentimes demanding that they live up to a standard he could never meet.

Here, we’ve got Andrea Mitchell asking this career politician about SEC officials watching porn on the job and instead of addressing their dereliction of duty, Barney blames Republicans!

Over at Hot Air, Allahpundit sums it up, “Because, see, the GOP favors less regulation of Wall Street, which naturally was all the country’s chief securities policemen needed to know to justify spending thousands of work hours surfing sites like ‘skankwire.'”

Seems Barney’s default answer to any question he can’t answer (or where the answer might conflict with the narrative he’s peddling) is to blame Republicans.  (Guess he didn’t get the memo from the President about the change he’s trying to bring to Washington, you know breaking that pattern “where everybody is always looking for somebody else to blame.“)

Barney keeps trotting out the same old rhetoric, the same old attacks and folks in the media think he’s so smart.  Guess we know what counts for intelligence in their book.

Can Tea Party Haters Let Go of their Prejudices?

No matter what the facts are, some in our mainstream media are eager to push the meme that opponents of President Obama are encouraging violence and promoting bigotry.  Heck, evidence could emerge showing that Tea Parties are more peaceful than Anti-War protests, but that wouldn’t matter much to those who use only a limited number of adjectives (all with negative connotations) when describing protesters for non-approved causes.

Every time these folks see conservatives taking to the streets, they think back to the 1960s and the opponents of integration.

And while they’re shocked, shocked that some protesters hoist signs saying angry and offensive things, they seem to have just plum forgotten some “eight years of anti-Bush rhetoric“.  Well, yesterday, Rush Limbaugh took to the pages of the Wall Street Journal to take these folks to task over their collective amnesia:

Liberals are perfectly comfortable with antigovernment protest when they’re not in power.

From the halls of the Ivy League to the halls of Congress, from the antiwar protests during the Vietnam War and the war in Iraq to the anticapitalist protests during International Monetary Fund and World Bank meetings, we’re used to seeing leftist malcontents take to the streets. Sometimes they’re violent, breaking shop windows with bricks and throwing rocks at police. Sometimes there are arrests. Not all leftists are violent, of course. But most are angry. It’s in their DNA. They view the culture as corrupt and capitalism as unjust.

Dissent which was once an expression of patriotism has now become evidence of sedition.  A charge which Rush roundly rejects: (more…)

Whatever Happened to that “Net Spending Cut”?

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 6:18 pm - April 23, 2010.
Filed under: Big Government Follies

As I was reading yesterday a print-out of Daniel Henninger’s Wall Street Journal piece, I recalled (yet again) how then-candidate Barack Obama responded to a question about the deficit reaching an “astounding record high of $455 billion dollars“:

There is no doubt that we’ve been living beyond our means and we’re going to have to make some adjustments. Now, what I’ve done throughout this campaign is to propose a net spending cut.

And yet, once in office, Mr. Henninger noted, Mr. Obama has presided over a severe spending spree.

When the financial crisis piled in atop a recession, the Democrats’ academic/pundit economists blandly convinced the party to wave a $787 billion stimulus at the problem in early 2009. Then, on April 30, the Democrats passed an FY 2010 budget of $3.5 trillion. This year the FY 2011 budget hit $3.8 trillion, reaching a post-World War II high of 25% of GDP. In March, they passed the trillion-dollar health-care bill. Total headline spending commitments in one year: about $9 trillion. That’s a lot of “trust” to ask for during a recession with 9% unemployment. And now a sense is building of some broad middle-class tax grab. After soaking the rich, comes the deluge.

Interesting when I went to check these numbers, I couldn’t find them in my initial searches of the various White House web pages.  They buried them underneath a lot of verbiage about a new era of fiscal responsibility, you know, in contrast to that “inherited” legacy of misplaced priorities.

So, via Wikipedia where I turned (so as to get my posts done in time to get back to my dissertation), I found the FY 2010 Budget was 3.552 trillion and that for the upcoming Fiscal Year 3.83 trillion.  After plugging a few numbers into my trusty, dusty calculator, I come up with a spending increase of 7.8% from President Obama’s first budget to his second.  And this at a time of an inflation rate just over 2% (well, that’s for the last four months; overall for 2009 it was -0.4%).

Net spending cut, that ain’t.  No wonder trust in the government has reached a new low.

Why isn’t the public sector cutting back along with the rest of the country?

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 5:30 pm - April 23, 2010.
Filed under: Big Government Follies

Asking whether a bailout backlash is building, Will Collier asks an important question:

A variation on the same question can be asked regarding the massive 2009 “stimulus” package, most of which has been routed to propping up profligate state and local governments: why isn’t the so-called public sector cutting back along with the rest of the country? Almost all of the job losses since the late-2008 crash have been in the private sector. States and localities are literally going broke because of irresponsible promises politicians made to government employees. Why should their financial status be any different from, say, construction workers whose jobs dried up in the real estate collapse?

Emphasis added.  Via:  Glenn Reynolds.