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Quote Of The Day.

Friday, January 30, 2004

Later Gators.

I will be maintaining radio silence for the rest of the weekend so as not to jinx the Team That Shall Not be Named who face That Other Team That Shall Not be Named in the Game That Shall Not be Named on the Day That Shall Not be Named.

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 30, 2004 | link

Safety First!

I have decided the best standard safety feature in any car is the CD player. No more weaving out of your lane because you’re playing Radio Station Bingo. Just pop in a disc and drive in boppin’ safety. Just so you know.

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 30, 2004 | link

Quiz Time.

I’m okay with this.

Redneck Bear
Redneck Bear


Which Dysfunctional Care Bear Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 30, 2004 | link

Quiz Too.

Themes aren’t always good.

Bo Duke
You are Bo Duke. You are caring and carefree. You
suffer from the "Peter Pan Syndrome"
and it doesn't look like you'll be growing up
anytime soon.


What Dukes of Hazzard Character are you?
brought to you by Quizilla


posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 30, 2004 | link

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Thursday, January 29, 2004

MORE MONEY FOR THE NEA?

I think President Bush's proposed funding increase for the NEA is symbolic, as the NEA itself is symbolic. 20-million can't be anything but symbolic in an overall federal budget that runs around a trillion. Question is, What is it symbolic of? I suggest it's meant to show that Mr. Bush is indeed, as advertised, a centrist coming from the right. Bush is not a revolutionary and has never portrayed himself as one. He is, in fact, a war fighter, and any triangulation he's working in this and other areas is as much for the sake of the successful prosecution of a long-term conflict as for his reelection. Frankly, even symbolic gestures that at least don't promote disunity are to be welcomed. National survival trumps all other considerations. That's the political component of the proposal.

Assuming some of the increase gets through the opposition, largely from further right than Mr. Bush (the remnants of the old Gingrich defund-the-NEA Congress), its effect will be to enhance programs that, like the NEA Shakespeare road show alighting in locales far from Tinseltown and Broadway, are meant to bring the arts--and artists--to the taxpayer.

posted by Robert on Thursday, January 29, 2004 | link

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Wednesday, January 28, 2004

INTELLECTUAL PASTRY

If it matters anymore, France—that is, the French state, the province of the nation’s educated elite—is of interest because of the harm it can and will do to the U.S. and its allies. And that elite is interesting because of the light it sheds on the post-Christian moral relativism that is the central tenet of elites everywhere throughout the West. (Item 2 below speaks volumes about the French elite’s increasingly convoluted “reasoning.”)

Item 1. From the indispensable Little Green Footballs: “An excellent piece by Barbara Amiel asks the question: Is France on the way to becoming an Islamic state? (Thanks to all who pointed this out.):

‘France is facing the problem that dare not speak its name. Though French law prohibits the census from any reference to ethnic background or religion, many demographers estimate that as much as 20-30 per cent of the population under 25 is now Muslim. The streets, the traditional haunt of younger people, now belong to Muslim youths. In France, the phrase “les jeunes” is a politically correct way of referring to young Muslims.
‘Given current birth rates, it is not impossible that in 25 years France will have a Muslim majority. The consequences are dynamic: is it possible that secular France might become an Islamic state?

‘The situation is not dissimilar elsewhere in the EU. Europeans may at some young point in the 21st century have to decide whether they wish to retain the diluted but traditional Judaeo-Christian culture of their minority or have it replaced by the Islamic culture of the majority.’

Item 2. From a highly educated (both here and in France) French ex-pat friend responding to Item 1:
“I think that indeed the Muslim community in Europe and in France will become a significant component of census just like the Latinos in the USA. Along with the growth of these communities, their faith and worship will grow concomitantly hence Catholics in the USA and Muslims in France and in Europe will most likely represent 35+ % of the population within 20-30 years. Therefore governments and administrations will then have to integrate the needs of these communities into the master plan of the countries. However I do not think that any Northwestern European country will ever become an Islamic Republic.”

In the realm of misleading analogies, this one—comparing the influx of Christians into a majority Christian nation with the influx of Muslims into a country that was only nominally Christian when the Nazi’s waltzed into Paris—takes the cake. Sadly, though, it is the stale cake French elites have subsisted on for generations.

posted by Robert on Wednesday, January 28, 2004 | link

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Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Literarium.

The Literarium has been updated. Think vinyl.

posted by Lee Ann on Tuesday, January 27, 2004 | link

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Monday, January 26, 2004

Hu’s on First?

President Hu’s in France.

Who’s in France?

Yes.

Yes who?

Yes, Hu!


posted by Lee Ann on Monday, January 26, 2004 | link

A Day Late and a Death Short.

Look-y there, Kofi Annan wants a brand spankin’ new UN Commission to prevent genocide. Sounds great to me. Lord knows when trouble’s a-brewin’ them international bureaucrats move like lightning. Hey, I got me an idea: next time a small nation, let’s call it Rwanda just for fun, is screaming for help because of outbreaks of mass murder, try not spending 3 months debating what color to paint the trucks. Just a thought.

posted by Lee Ann on Monday, January 26, 2004 | link

THEY DON’T CALL IT FOREIGN POLICY FOR NOTHING

Bill Buckley on Kerry’s mea culpa based view of the Vietnam War (and, by extension, America's place in world politics today) here
and Joel Mowbray on the Saudi problem here (no apologies to the Islamist/Wahabi/Hitlerian position that the only problem is the “Jewish Problem”).

posted by Robert on Monday, January 26, 2004 | link

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Sunday, January 25, 2004

WHICH MUSLIMS HAVE THE PRESIDENT’S ATTENTION?

Not the right ones, according to Frank Gaffney Jr. in his FrontPageMagazine.com study, "A Troubling Influence":

"Grover Norquist’s efforts to legitimate and open important doors for pro-Islamist organizations in this country must be brought to an immediate halt. They have already created political vulnerabilities for this President and his Administration. But for the influence exerted by Norquist and his friends, President Bush might long ago have reached out to peaceable, tolerant, pro-American Muslims. In particular, the past 26 months could have been spent building up Muslim spokesmen and groups who share this President’s vision of a world in which democracy, liberty and freedom of religion prosper – and who could help cultivate those values in Muslim lands and communities overseas.

"Instead, the President has been put in the position of repeatedly embracing individuals and organizations who are part of the problem. They have capitalized on their preferred treatment to exclude non-Islamist Muslims from meetings with the Bush team, to secure government contracts and favors, to raise funds and to dominate other Muslim- and Arab-Americans. We have thus been denied allies and strengthened our foes in what the President calls 'the Battle of Ideas.'"


posted by Robert on Sunday, January 25, 2004 | link

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Saturday, January 24, 2004

Check This Out.

Here’s an intro to new publisher who puts out reprints of minor works. What qualifies as minor? Read on.

posted by Lee Ann on Saturday, January 24, 2004 | link

No Wonder It’s on Spiked.

This is an interesting story on Spiked Online challenging the conventional understanding of the infamous Tuskegee Experiment. As is usual, the truth seems to be a bit more complex than we have been lead to believe. Throw race into the mix and you can forget about impartial scrutiny and critical reasoning. One of the last survivors of the Experiment just died and this has been in the news of late. This is about the only place I’ve seen a counter-argument of any kind to the Tuskegee Horror legend. Living here in La Divina Alabama, we’ve learned to take any “civil rights” story with a dump truck of salt. Local “civil rights” activists have been caught lying, cheating, and stealing so often you tend to disregard anything “race” or “rights” oriented as a fraud. That does nothing for one’s humanity but humanity ain’t as reliable as it used to be. Back to the article, it seems very well researched and is plenty thought-provoking.

“Accusations of racism, egregious harm and betrayal (lack of informed consent) are common features of the horror-story account. A sober representation in this genre might state that the Tuskegee syphilis study was 'a US Public Health Service experiment that allowed 400 black males of Tuskegee to go unknowingly without syphilis medication for 40 years simply to satisfy the medical profession's curiosity about what happens to people when they aren't cured of venereal disease' (3).

“The implication of that statement, of course, is that the syphilis infections of the residents of Macon County in 1932 could have been cured, yet vulnerable black men were kept ignorant of their condition and left to suffer because of the racist attitudes at the Public Health Service - and that all this was done in the name of callous science by researchers who had no real interest in the public good or the welfare of members of a poor minority group in the South.”


The author presents a good case that this understanding would have been wrong. This a a long article and draws on a lot of medical research but is very accessible to the intelligent reader. As you guys are Spinsterians, you fall in that category. Here’s a bit from the part dealing with the popular view of the men in the experiment:

“Indeed, why should we so readily accept as plausible the somewhat patronising image of black men in Alabama as so ignorant and innocent that for 40 years they had no idea that the symptoms of 'bad blood' were related to syphilis, and were easily duped into thinking they were getting fully adequate treatment from occasional contact with some government physician, who saw them on a schedule that was entirely unrelated to the development of any of their medical complaints?”

The last paragraph sums up the article pretty well:

“Racial justice matters, and social justice in general is a central value in our liberal democracy. But one must also remain open to the possibility that in this instance politics and generalised racial grievance have got in the way of critical analysis. That too remains to be seen, and debated. At the very least, the evidence suggests to me that in this instance the 'received wisdom' of the day deserves to be re-examined. One hopes for a renewed, critical and balanced public discussion of the meaning of 'Tuskegee', the type of discussion that might heal wounds rather than reopen them. Not just because the world is often more morally complex than imagined; but also because collective reason (and reasoning together) also matters in the construction of those of our historical narratives that invite us to reflect on the moral foundations of our own society.”

This is a very good article. There are some footnotes at the end if you want to check his sources.

posted by Lee Ann on Saturday, January 24, 2004 | link

JUST HOW GOOD IS THE LORD OF THE RINGS?

Up there with the best our civilization has produced, according to Bradley J. Birzer, author of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Sanctifying Myth: Understanding Middle Earth. Says Birzer:

"Tolkien, historians and literary scholars will conclude, preserved the best of Western civilization in a century that mocked tradition, desecrated the human person, and ignored the Author of Creation. Tolkien, they will write, stood athwart a culture that valued entertainment rather than leisure, and utility rather than beauty, while mutilating the souls and the temples housing those souls in the holocaust camps, gulags, and abortion clinics."

See if you agree with his assessment, found at the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, publisher of his book.

(Note: Fans of Peter Jackson's film version of LOTR who haven't read the book will be surprised at what the film failed to include, among other problems Birzer has with Jackson's effort.)


posted by Robert on Saturday, January 24, 2004 | link

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Friday, January 23, 2004

Wha!?!

According to the Washington Post, Rep. Billy Tauzin (R - LA) is about to ditch Congress for some serious schmundo heading the pharmaceutical industry’s trade association. This would put Tauzin’s seat up for grabs in a special election in November. That’s something to keep an eye on if it pans out.

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 23, 2004 | link

Hang Her High.

Ladies and Gentlemen, in the interest of fairness, I will link to the near ironclad case against my feminist heroine, Martha Stewart. For her crimes, she must be punished.

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 23, 2004 | link

The Dead Zone.

This has been a bad couple of days to be famous. First, Ann Miller died. She was a heck of a hoofer and was great in Room Service with the Marx Brothers. Today legendary photographer Helmut Newton smashed his Caddy into a wall and died on scene. I thought he was a bit overrated but still impressive. Worst, we lost . . . sob . . . Captain Kangaroo! That hurts.

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 23, 2004 | link

THE MORE THINGS CHANGE…

These are indeed strange times—and I’m not talking about the Dean meltdown in sub-freezing Iowa or the discovery of water on Mars. What has struck me—and, I’m sure, others—is, though the political season has arrived on schedule and science continues to make awesome strides in every field, the year 2004 also has brought us the juxtaposition of controversies over two popular cultural creations planted firmly in the first century A.D.: Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ and Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code. Owing to the motivations of these two artists, no two works could be more dissimilar, Gibson striving to render faithfully the last chapters of the Gospel of John for the big screen, Brown cutting and pasting a dog’s breakfast of heresies into a wildly popular novel.

I’m still curious about the Gibson film and will probably go to see it this Lent, but after reading Sandra Miesel’s aptly titled "Dismantling The Da Vinci Code" (part one and part two) at Catholic Exchange, I doubt seriously I’ll waste my time on the novel—despite the fact that half the women I know are feasting on its hash of Gnostic malarkey as heartily as they did the pop paganism of The Mists of Avalon back in the 1980s, another book that sought to construct a useable feminist mythology out of whole cloth. Gibson, on the other hand, rather than turn his back on Cavalry has fixed his creative attention upon it.

The thing won’t let us go, will it?

posted by Robert on Friday, January 23, 2004 | link

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Thursday, January 22, 2004

DON’T CRUSH THAT DWARF!

Gimli the dwarf, a key combatant in the successful war to rid Middle Earth of the Dark Lord, now faces a new intractable foe, Muslim advocacy groups—or, at least, the actor who played Gimli does. From Robert Spencer’s piece in Front Page Magazine:

"Muslim advocacy groups in the West are making skillful use of the race card against anyone who points out uncomfortable truths. One of the most recent targets of this is John Rhys-Davies, the Welsh actor who plays Gimli the dwarf in the Lord of the Rings movies. IcWales, which identifies itself as 'the national website of Wales,' reported that Rhys-Davies had 'kicked off a race storm' last Saturday by 'making anti-Muslim remarks.'

"What did he say? He pointed out that 'by 2020, 50 per cent of the children in Holland under the age of 18 will be of Muslim descent.' This is, he said, just part of a 'demographic catastrophe happening in Europe that nobody wants to talk about, that we daren’t bring up because we are so cagey about not offending people racially. And rightly we should be. But there is a cultural thing as well. I think that Tolkien [author of the Lord of the Rings books] says that some generations will be challenged. And if they do not rise to meet that challenge, they will lose their civilisation.'

"'Many do not understand,' he continued, 'how precarious Western civilisation is and what a joy it is. From it, we get real democracy. From it, we get the sort of intellectual tolerance that allows me to propound something that may be completely alien to you.'

"'It’s clear from this that Rhys-Davies didn’t have race in mind, or culture in the sense of styles of clothing or eating habits. He was expressing his concern about those who wish to erase the Western principles of tolerance and democracy in the name of the ideology of jihad."

My take on this is that the bully boy Muslim advocacy groups and their trial lawyers should pick on somebody their own size, like, say, Japan.

posted by Robert on Thursday, January 22, 2004 | link

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Wednesday, January 21, 2004

UNINTENDED MARTYRDOM

After seeing their biting, provocative ads in National Review and elsewhere for years, I finally decided to subscribe to New Oxford Review—and I’m not disappointed one bit. The January issue arrived last week, and I chomped it down with relish on the train between New York and Washington this past weekend. (That in itself is remarkable, considering that I find reading on the train nearly impossible; train motion lulls me to sleep within minutes, reading on a train within seconds—altogether a pleasant experience.)

If you’ve seen the ads, you might know why I hesitated: Judging from their rhetoric, NOR appears to be published by a pack of orthodox Catholic pit bulls daring you to set foot on their territory. But, after my first issue, I can say I find their unabashed militancy true and refreshing. Theirs is not the hippie-dippy Catholicism I associate with folk-music embalmed Masses—and it’s not a pose. Heretics, hypocrites and dissemblers are their game, and they enjoy the hunt.

For example, in an article in their "Notes" section, NOR concludes that the Anglican Church, in going to bed with the likes of newly installed Episcopal Bishop V. Gene Robinson and, of necessity, with the gay lover for whom he abandoned his wife and kids, has further endangered the lives of church members in Africa beset by dictatorial states and Muslim sharia law (ironically, it is the African church that is growing rapidly, while precipitously declining birthrates may spell doom for the Anglican mother churches of the West):

"… it’s not far-fetched to think that hoardes of Muslim fanatics would terrorize Anglicans because they perceive that Anglicanism to be a religion for perverts. Did the Episcopal convention pay heed to this real threat? No. Homosexuals love to 'dis' heterosexuals as mere 'breeders.' Apparently, the Episcopal convention has decided that heterosexuals in Africa are quite literally a lesser breed."

Why hasn’t anybody in a mainstream media that can’t run enough stories on "gay" challenges to religious orthodoxy noticed this connection before? Perhaps political correctness and its bully stick threat of "hate crime" prosecution has something to do with media fear. NOR, thankfully, is a PC-free zone (for them, it’s "homosexual" and not "gay," and they always put the marriage in "same-sex 'marriage'" in quotes).

In the same vein, the current NOR has a fine piece by Virginia Commonwealth University Professor Emeritus of English and Latin Leland D. Peterson on Roman master poet Juvenal, one of my faves from the 1st Century A. D., who, though not a Christian, satirized—you guessed it—same-sex "marriage" and a "gay plague" that raised the hackles of traditionalist Romans of the time who tended more toward Stoicism and stable family life. (I hadn't realized before reading the article that the prestigious Harvard Loeb Classical Library edition of Juvenal bowdlerizes his second satire, one of Peterson's sources for the article, and thereby attempts to make politically correct one of the most politically incorrect poets in the history of Western civilization.)

My strong recommendation is to take a chance and respond to the next New Oxford Review ad you see in National Review, First Things or wherever. Or, go to their website.

posted by Robert on Wednesday, January 21, 2004 | link

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Monday, January 19, 2004

Literarium.

The Literarium has been updated. Spinster Bob's book of poetry gets reviewed. Will there be much rejoicing? Find out in the next thrilling episode of "Literarium!"

posted by Lee Ann on Monday, January 19, 2004 | link

Check This Out.

Seriously, how long did you think I could go without linking Boomer Deathwatch?

posted by Lee Ann on Monday, January 19, 2004 | link

Wahoo!!!

What’d I tell ya? Patsies all the way

posted by Lee Ann on Monday, January 19, 2004 | link

THIS JUST IN

Catholic Exchange is running my poem "Evangel," from The UFOs of October. Consider it an appetizer, the book being the meal.


posted by Robert on Monday, January 19, 2004 | link

POP QUIZ

Test your level of victimization at the hands of arrogant educrats—are there any other kind?—by defining these terms:

1) standard units of credit
2) verified credits
3) extended constructed responses
4) selected response
5) modeling efficient subtraction strategies

For extra credit, What is a “learning cottage”?

Unsure of your answers? For correct answers, go to Linda Perlstein’s "Talking the Edutalk" in yesterday’s Washington Post. Or, simply believe Robert Hartwell Fiske, editor of The Vocabula Review, when he says in the article that these and other terms now in fashion in the educationist industry "will drive anyone to complete hysteria." Fiske adds:

"If teachers want to talk in those terms among themselves, they're welcome to—perhaps sequestered—but introducing children to them is criminal, dehumanizing. You can't have kids going around spouting this stuff."

posted by Robert on Monday, January 19, 2004 | link

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Thursday, January 15, 2004

Oldsmobiles Away!

See Jonah. See Jonah slam Fat Teddy. Slam, Jonah, slam. Jonah is a real mack daddy.

posted by Lee Ann on Thursday, January 15, 2004 | link

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Wednesday, January 14, 2004

Just to Show . . .

Why Reuters annoys the hell out of me. This is a story about the latest Palestinian butcher who murdered 4 Israelis at a checkpoint. Here’s Reuters’ idea of an objective lead:

“A Palestinian mother of two blew herself up at the main border crossing between Israel and the Gaza Strip Wednesday, killing four Israelis and wounding seven people.”

Let’s pay a little more attention to this little sentence, shall we?

“A Palestinian mother of two . . .

Just so you know who to have sympathy for. Biased much?

“ . . . blew herself up . . .

This would be the main significance of the event. Mommy ‘splodes herself. Not the murder or the murdered, the poor widdle killer.

“ . . . at the main border crossing between Israel and the Gaza Strip Wednesday, killing four Israelis and wounding seven people.”

Am I the only one noticing that the writer is distinguishing between Israelis and people? Why not “seven others?” Hmm.

posted by Lee Ann on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 | link

Sowell Patrol.

Yippee! More Random Thoughts from the Sowell Man himself. Some faves:

“Some people's jobs will allow them to be important only by being a pain.”

“Those who want to take our money and gain power over us have discovered the magic formula: Get us envious or angry at others and we will surrender, in installments, not only our money but our freedom. The most successful dictators of the 20th century -- Hitler, Lenin, Stalin, Mao -- all used this formula and now class warfare politicians here are doing the same.”

posted by Lee Ann on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 | link

Sorry Folks.

I was sick this week and not just from the thought of another week of the Donovan McNabb Whine-A-Thon. I actually had to go home from work early on Monday. Not fun. But I’m good now. I’m healthy anyway.

posted by Lee Ann on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 | link

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Sunday, January 11, 2004

ENVIRONMENTALISTS FOR BUSH?

Nah—but they should be, according to Leo McKinstry, who opines today that greenie “peace activists should be raising their glasses of organic carrot juice in gratitude to President George W Bush” because they aim to “make the world a safer place by reductions in arsenals of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons.” And that is, of course, what Mr. Bush is accomplishing.

McKinstry realizes that such support for Bush will forever remain fantasy: Behind this fashionable enviro façade lurks the heart of totalitarianism. Although McKinstry’s analysis focuses on British peace activists, there are parallels to those in the U.S. left who consistently have supported enemies of the West, whether they be the Soviets during the late Cold War or Islamists in today’s War on Terrorists. Their motive? McKinstry goes to Orwell for the explanation that those who will not—and have not—defended the West under any conceivable circumstances are "intellectual pacifists whose real, though unacknowledged, motive appears to be a hatred of western democracy and an admiration for totalitarianism."

posted by Robert on Sunday, January 11, 2004 | link

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Saturday, January 10, 2004

MY CHILD, MY THERAPIST

I agree, Lee Ann, that John Derbyshire’s likening of the Madonna/Britney crowd to apes is telling, though I think it is the latter that suffer unjustly in the comparison: When people fall, they pass the animal kingdom on the way down. This is Walker Percy territory, specifically his premise in The Thanatos Syndrome that if scientists could isolate and then suppress that part of the brain, which "governs" the conscience, then society, could do away with the psychiatric profession, since so much angst is a direct consequence of guilt.

I believe boomers have come awfully close to achieving such an end, the explosive proliferation of licit and illicit psychotropic drugs no doubt helping them along. When parents put their own feelings above all other considerations are they not attempting to leapfrog their consciences?

I recall hearing from somebody who, having gotten married late in life to a woman half his age, decided to have children because he felt he had been a selfish person all his life. At first glance, his decision would seem to be altruistic, even admirable. But I’m not so sure. Hasn’t he, too, fallen into a trap, i.e. bringing a child into the world so he might feel better about himself? I wonder how the child of such a man might feel years later to realize he had been put into the world to provide therapy for his parent?

posted by Robert on Saturday, January 10, 2004 | link

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Friday, January 09, 2004

Patsies All The Way!!!

Don’t expect any posting this weekend as it’s the playoffs. The Patriots should go all the way this year. The only problem I see is with tomorrow’s game against the Titans. Steve McNair is the best pure quarterback in the game. The Titans also have good defense. The Pats will have to come up big. They can but will they? It’s also Do Or Die time for the Pack. They will have to play a heck of a lot better this week than last week.

And to think, in little more than 2 weeks, there will no more football.

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 09, 2004 | link

Ars Derbica.

Derb takes it to Slutney and good. Okay, it’s more like a well-reasoned foray into the issue of gay marriage and the welfare of the Culture but hey, good opening lines don’t just fall off trees. As for gay marriage, doesn’t Britney’s Vegas Wedding just prove how ridiculous it is for straights to say gays will destroy an institution that allows La Affaire Britney? Saith Derb:

“The short answer is that if a customary social institution is trashed and trivialized by irresponsible buffoons, we ought to exert more control over it — to tighten access, not loosen it. If it turns out that there has been chicanery in the counting of votes, that is an argument for making supervision of the voting rules stricter, not for opening the voting booths to felons, foreigners, lunatics, and minors. Things are for whom they are for. Voting is for law-abiding adult citizens of sound mind; marriage is for men and women; the fact that either institution might have been abused in some particular instance does not make a case for altering fundamental definitions. Speaking as a person who has watched from the sidewalk as the Gay Pride parade made its way down Manhattan's Fifth Avenue one balmy summer's day, I have no confidence at all — not a jot, tittle, nor smidgeon of confidence, sorry — that opening up marriage to homosexuals will raise the general level of seriousness and respect which the institution enjoys in our society. The contrary effect seems to me infinitely more probable.”

Derb does spare a few words for the future porn queen herself, for instance on her recent “spiritual” pronouncements. Derb on Slutney on kabbalah:

“What does a nice blonde shiksa know about kabbalah? Her friend and role model Madonna is ‘into’ it, that's what. In their set, it's this month's cool religion. That's the kind of people Britney hangs out with. Her taste in society could only be worse if she spent her leisure time frolicking among Bonobo chimps.”

And dontcha love that last paragraph.

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 09, 2004 | link

Hmm.

Reading this, I get the idea that no woman should even think about getting into a relationship with a man raised by a single parent. Anyone so cavalier about being a disposable appendage to his own family should be avoided at all costs.

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 09, 2004 | link

WHITHER YOUR COJONES, EL NORTE?

National Review’s Kate O’Beirne has a list of suggestions President Bush should put on the table with Mexican jefe Vincente Fox:

" - the Mexican government should increase education funding
- English should be mandatory in Mexican schools
- Spanish should be abandoned as the official national language [of Mexico]"

Says O’Beirne, "We have no official national language. Why should they? Mexico has more non-Spanish-speaking citizens than we have non-English-speaking residents."

Her other points of negotiation:

" - native populations should be granted equal rights
- foreigners should be able to own land (fee simple) anywhere in Mexico
- environmental laws should be enforced and tightened
- border control should be improved on the Mexican side”

None of this is on the table. As she says, "We give up the store at the outset."

Tant pis.

Note: Pehaps Mr. Bush understands that the U.S.--a nation that seems satisfied to entrust the assimilation of its own children to junk music, junk film, junk TV and junk food--has little of moral value to say to anybody in this regard.


posted by Robert on Friday, January 09, 2004 | link

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Thursday, January 08, 2004

ANGLO’S ATTITUDE ALARMS ARABS

If you aren’t already checking out Little Green Footballs daily, maybe this item from today’s LGF will pique your curiosity. A somewhat harsh judgment of Arab culture, the words of a BBC reporter writing for a UK paper, it has gotten him in very hot water with his bosses:

“Apart from oil - which was discovered, is produced and is paid for by the west - what do they contribute? Can you think of anything? Anything really useful? Anything really valuable? Something we really need, could not do without? No, nor can I.

“What do they think we feel about them? That we adore them for the way they murdered more than 3,000 civilians on September 11 and then danced in the hot, dusty streets to celebrate the murders? That we admire them for being suicide bombers, limb amputators, women repressors?”

posted by Robert on Thursday, January 08, 2004 | link

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Wednesday, January 07, 2004

A Class Actor.

Robert Duvall slammed Stephen Spielberg for his (Spielberg's) trip to the bloody isle of Cuba. Spielberg was ga-ga over the prison isle and its quaintly brutalized citizens. After making Schindler’s List you’d think Spielberg would be less enamored of mass murderers. Duvall gets him good though. Quoth Robert:

“ ' Now, what I want to ask him, ... 'Would you consider building a little annex on the Holocaust museum, or at least across the street, to honor the dead Cubans that Castro killed.' ”

posted by Lee Ann on Wednesday, January 07, 2004 | link

Bush Whacked.

As great a wartime president as he is, W. still makes a somewhat mediocre domestic president. Yes, I loved the tax cuts but I hate the way he embraces diet versions of boneheaded liberal policies. The Fat Teddy Education Plan is one example. The latest is the “Let’s Undermine National Sovereignty and Border Security” by proposing an American version of a Guest Worker program. Sure, those temporary workers always go back home again. Ask the Germans. Bet they aren’t amending the automatic citizenship laws either. I also think it’s stupid to give the corrupt, repressive, kleptocratic paradise that is Mexico a safety valve for its dissatisfied citizens. As long as anybody with an ounce of dignity heads for El Norte there will never be any real reform in a country that desperately needs it. Let's ignore the giant Social Security give-away that will bankrupt our economy, instead let's deal with that little thing about rewarding felons for committing felonies. Illegal entry into the US is a felony. I guess some felonies are less important than others. I have no problem with immigrants. Legal immigrants, that is. Want truckloads of Mexicans in the country? Great, bring ‘em. But I want full background checks on each and every one of them. I want to know who they are, who their mamas are, and who their mamas’ mamas are. And one serious criminal conviction and its hasta la vista. Permanently. And we need to junk that outdated “automatic citizenship” rule. That was great in the Nineteenth Century when it took 3 months to get here. How about citizenship is only granted to the native born children of those who have been legal residents of the USA for 1 year prior to the child’s birth? No more anchor babies. You want the privilege of citizenship? Earn it.

posted by Lee Ann on Wednesday, January 07, 2004 | link

COLD MOUNTAIN: TAKE ONE FOR INDICATIONS OF LOST-CAUSE-ITIS

In my recent visceral response to the film Cold Mountain I forgot to mention that far too much emoting or obvious underplaying filled the screen to make me suspend disbelief—and that is why I either found myself musing on the gorgeous setting or the too often anachronistic messages the film was attempting to deliver. But one of those messages the film contains is worth examining, as Mac Owens does today at National Review: The film is an antidote for those who were moved by the “Lost Cause” myth Gods and Generals delivered. Because, surely, that myth was poison to generations of Southerners who, like Owen, were fed on its delusions.


posted by Robert on Wednesday, January 07, 2004 | link

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Tuesday, January 06, 2004

Okay . . .

Has Blogger gone screwy or is it just Spinsters?

posted by Lee Ann on Tuesday, January 06, 2004 | link

Quiz Time.

You know, I hate this movie. Technically, I can’t hate it because I've never seen it. I could never sit through the first 5 minutes. Boringissimo.



posted by Lee Ann on Tuesday, January 06, 2004 | link

Listen Up.

Here’s a weird little interview with Brian Setzer. He’s one of my fave musicians. I love his rockabilly but am gonzo over his later swingabilly. What do you expect from a girl who loves both Perry Como and AC/DC?

posted by Lee Ann on Tuesday, January 06, 2004 | link

GANDALF THREAT TO WORLD PEACE

posted by Robert on Tuesday, January 06, 2004 | link

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Monday, January 05, 2004

Kucinich-al Musings.

Democratic candidate Dennis Kucinich, a man so far left he makes Howard Dean look like the voice of reason, is a serious vegan. He was once seriously pro-life but since his move onto the national political stage has become seriously pro-choice. All of which brings up the philosophical question:

Is it okay if I just eat the fetal cows?

posted by Lee Ann on Monday, January 05, 2004 | link

Football Notes.

I’m way too far behind to re-start posting on my beloved NFL this late in post-season but I will make the following observations:

1. Patsies all the way!

2. Brett Favre sure does have that Ozzie-shuffle thing going, don’t he?

3. Never, ever call your shot in OT.

posted by Lee Ann on Monday, January 05, 2004 | link

Check This Out.

Wow! I found a babe blog from the University of Chicago that does a full tilt boogie on lefty feminism. The blog is Diotima. Read on.

posted by Lee Ann on Monday, January 05, 2004 | link

JOUSTING WITH CLASSROOM BOORS

Mike S. Adams, an associate professor at UNC-Wilmington, loves to shoot down students who show up late for his classes and/or who forget to turn off their cell-phones. I know the problems well, though I’ve never had a student answer his cell in class, and while I have my ways of dealing with classroom barbarians, I find his much more interesting—and amusing.

One of his punishments is to make cell transgressors write a paper for each audible ring of the phone—a 2,500 word paper on "The Death of Civility at the Postmodern University." Assuming—quite rightly—that students "probably have never written on this subject," Adams makes two suggestions to help the boorish in their research.

The first is to "interview a person who was alive during World War II" and ask them questions like this one: "How many of your failures in school were the result of a lack of 'nurturing' by your teachers." And this: "Did any of your teachers ever suggest that punctuality was an antiquated Western notion with racist, sexist, and classist overtones?"

Adams' second suggestion is to "interview an employee at the Office of Campus Diversity or any professor currently teaching in the social sciences or humanities" if "It is possible that the diversity movement, with its emphasis on moral relativism, causes students to dismiss the rules a professor establishes with regard to appropriate class conduct?"

Adams has several more questions in each category, each more pointed and laugh-inducing than the last. A masterful blend of levity and gravity.

posted by Robert on Monday, January 05, 2004 | link

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Saturday, January 03, 2004

LET US REASON TOGETHER

The Washington Post weighed in today on the uproar over Muslim amateur football players in Southern California who gave their teams innocuous sounding names like Intifada, Soldiers of Allah, and Mujaheddin, terms the article’s writer, Ruben Navarrette, Jr. describes thusly:

"There was Intifada, the term Palestinians use to describe revolts against Israeli occupation. And Soldiers of Allah. And Mujaheddin, a term that means 'holy warrior' and has been used in reference to Islamic terrorist groups."

Navarrette adds that critics of such "innocent" terms and the "innocence" of those who used them are just too, too intense:

"Totally unacceptable, said Rabbi Abraham Cooper of the Southern California-based Simon Wiesenthal Center. Cooper told the Associated Press that such words are 'linked to real terrorists, real threats, real murders.' And using them only glorifies terrorism.

"With all due respect, Rabbi, that's a real stretch. We're talking about football teams, remember? A little perspective wouldn't hurt."

With all due respect, Mr. Navarrette, are you the one playing the fool? I'm with the rabbi: your complacent disingenuousness mocks the dead, even as it paves the way for more casualties in the war on terrorism. Where I come from--Brooklyn, NY--each of those three team names translates into the same phrase: We are coming to kill you. That is reality, not "mere" words.


posted by Robert on Saturday, January 03, 2004 | link

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Friday, January 02, 2004

Ve Haff Vays of Making You Tolerant.

The following are excerpts from a very chilling article on the dictatorial imposition of a radical gay rights agenda on our neighbor to the North. It also details the pattern of persecution and police action against those who, for sincere religious reasons, oppose the gay agenda. The Canadian Judiciary is doing what the American bench hasn’t quite had the guts to do. Yet. So far we Americans have been allowed, now brace yourself, to debate the issue of gay marriage, openly and without fear of arrest for thought crimes. Not so in Canada.

“America may share in many of our social ills - rampant divorce and abortion come to mind - but at least she still fights the culture war. Canadians, on the hand, have all but surrendered to the pan-sexualist social agenda of our judicial activists.”

Unfortunately for freedom-lovers, the black-robed fascists of Canada are not content to oppress only their own citizenry. They insist on exporting their social experiments. This of course gives their American counterparts the opportunity to bypass democracy altogether and impose their ubermensch morality on us poor plebes. One of our Supreme Court Justices (Ginsburg I believe) has already declared that the Constitution should not be the only arbiter of America Law. American citizens should be granted rights only when in keeping with the intellectual fashions of Europe. As for Canada:

“Less than a month after the Ontario Court ruling [mandating same sex marriage – my note], over 300 same-sex couples have already entered into civil marriages in Canada. Mainstream Canadian news agencies report anywhere between ten to twenty percent of these couples are Americans who crossed the border to take advantage of the Canadian situation. This is rather shameful considering that just a few months previous to the Ontario Court ruling, the Canadian government had voiced strong opposition to American and British unilateralism in the Iraqi War. Regardless of one’s feelings toward the war, however, such unilateralism cannot even begin to compare with Canada’s present unilateralism in attempting to redefine an institution that almost every nation throughout time has accepted as an exclusive relationship between a man and a woman. In fact, the present authors consider the unilateral arrogance of our Canadian judiciary second only to the unilateral cowardice of our elected officials in refusing to defend their legislative role within the Canadian government.”

But how can the Canuck judiciary castrate the Canadian Legislature without a peep of protest? Because the politicians are want the gay rights agenda passed but can’t vote that way because they know their constituents (you know, the voters, the citizens?) are dead set against it. So instead of jeopardizing their jobs, they let the unelected and unreviewable judiciary do the dictating for them. Who’s watching the watchmen? Nobody. The watchmen are rooting for the barbarians at the hedgerows.

More ominously, the Canadian Campaign to force gay rights on a muzzled populace is using the full powers of the courts to persecute their opposition. People expressing their religious views or merely refusing to lend their labor to the gay agenda have been arrested, fined, and threatened with prison terms. All under the watchful eyes of a government legal system in the control of gay activists. While the campaign of persecution focuses on all Christians, it is directed most frequently and virulently towards the Catholic Church. When isn’t it? Check this out:

“ . . . according to the same Globe and Mail article, ‘The comments by Roman Catholic Church leaders [reasserting traditional Catholic teachings on sexual morality – my note] have angered gay-rights activists and other religious groups. “It's just appalling,” said Michael Leshner, who legally wed his partner, Michael Stark, in Toronto in June, Canada's first same-sex marriage. “It's sickening, it's obnoxious and it's got to stop.’ [...] He accused the Catholic church of preaching ‘religious intolerance,” adding, “The Charter of Rights trumps the Bible.” ’

“Let us set aside for Mr. Leshner’s arrogance in asserting a sexual legal positivism over the wisdom and tradition of the Natural Law. While some might dismiss Mr. Leshner’s threats as empty, the present authors cannot share this optimism. After all, Mr. Leshner is a Crown Attorney, which is the equivalent to a District Attorney in Canada’s judicial system. He holds this position in Toronto - Canada’s largest city, and one of its most politically influential ones. As such, Mr. Leshner is part of the judicial culture that, in usurping the role of our democratically elected legislature, brought about the legalization of so-called same-sex marriage. Thus Canadian religious and social conservatives cannot dismiss Mr. Leshner’s threats as those of your average homosexual activist.”

Threats and persecutions in place of free and open debate. The legal system meant to protect the rights of citizens dedicated to smashing the most fundamental rights of all. Oh Canada!


posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 02, 2004 | link

So . . .

34 years for groping but nothing for all those murders?

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 02, 2004 | link

Hey Look!

Gomer Pyle won World Idol.

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 02, 2004 | link

Duh Award.

Jewish groups claim the European Commission is anti-semitic. What tipped them off?

posted by Lee Ann on Friday, January 02, 2004 | link

A BURNING THING

Peter M. Candler, Jr. wrote about the best piece I read last year regarding Mr. Johnny Cash, his life and death, what his music stirred in the soul, above all about his love. It’s now up at First Things, and here’s an excerpt:

"… his life cannot be reduced to a metaphor. It was more than just one of noble ambition or grandeur of design; Johnny’s virtues were just as hard-fought as his vices. In life Johnny Cash struggled for and against the God whose grip on him was so frustratingly and thankfully relentless that it was able to absorb all that fierce rage and all those addictions. Johnny could sing about murder and God in the same song and with the same voice because to do otherwise would have been dishonest. At the same time, he let that despair, agony, and rejection stand on their own—he lent them integrity. There was no serious salvation unless there was first some serious sin. Cash echoed St. Paul: 'It is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.' But there is at least one thing that Cash never was, and that is a moralist. He did not chalk doubt up to a misunderstanding. Rather, Cash showed that doubt is itself proper to faith. A God who could not stomach the darkest moments of His creation was not worth our worship, much less a song."

(And by the way, welcome back, Lee Ann!)


posted by Robert on Friday, January 02, 2004 | link

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Thursday, January 01, 2004

My New Year’s Resolutions.

First off, Happy New Year!!! In honor of the New Year I am making some resolutions. Here they are:

1. I will post more often. I know I have been very lax about posting. The last few months have been awful but that doesn’t excuse me from wallowing. Wallowing is a fine southern tradition. You can do it indoors and avoid scaring the horses. But the time to wallow is over.

2. I will get back on a stronger reading schedule. This may mean rooting through and rearranging my library but it must be done. Expect trades, cuts, and some risky draft picks. Free agency will devastate the fiction lineup but revenue sharing amongst the history shelf will make the library stronger. This resolution makes much more sense when you realize I have the world’s only NFL inspired library.

2b. I will pronounce the word “schedule” as “skedule” the way all good Americans should, instead of as “shedule” like some dopey little Limey.

3. I will eat more, drink more and take less exercise. At least I know I can keep this one.

posted by Lee Ann on Thursday, January 01, 2004 | link

More Ominous Than "Chatter"

Islamist organizations are having success recruiting for what amounts to a Fifth Column that has every intention of defeating the U.S. in our war on terrorists. Frank Gaffney, Jr. has this to say at Catholic Exchange:

"Worrisome as the intelligence-intercepted "chatter" that prompted such actions might be, a much more ominous problem may not be getting the attention it deserves — the danger arising from radical Muslims (known as "Islamists") already here in the United States.

"On December 23rd, the Wall Street Journal rendered an important public service with a lengthy, front-page article offering insights into the nature and extent of the Islamist presence in America. Under the headline, 'The Brotherhood: A Student Journeys Into a Secret Circle of Extremism,' reporter Paul Barrett describes the personal experiences of Mustafa Saied, a young Muslim who became radicalized while studying at the University of Tennessee. His story is an object lesson in the way in which one of the most dangerous of the Islamist organizations, the Muslim Brotherhood, is indoctrinating and recruiting in our midst."

Gaffney is president of the Center for Security Policy, well worth a look if you’re interested in how we’re doing right now, in what they call “the early stages of World War IV” (WW III being the Cold War).

How do I think we're doing? Ask me this time next year.

posted by Robert on Thursday, January 01, 2004 | link

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Contact Spinster Lee Ann at calhounista_at_hotmail

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Two Babes and a Bob! Opinion, insight, commentary, sarcasm, scathing polemic, and wit by Lee Ann, Carol, and Robert. Featuring the spectral presence of Gena.
Contact the Spinsters at: brodskii@yahoo.com (Gena) calhounista@hotmail.com (Lee Ann)

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