San Diego Soliloquies

Friday, October 03, 2003

The Derb Explains It All

Pretty much due to the heavy moral pressure exerted by Charles Colson, some conservatives are coming around to the idea that maybe, just maybe, prison rape is a bad thing.

John Derbyshire, of course, knows exactly who's to blame for it.

    Ramesh: Surely one factor in the rise of prison rape--which I feel sure was wellnigh unknown a generation ago--has been the striking down of the very strong social taboo on male-male buggery. This taboo was universal across all cultures, primitive and civilized, and even including those that tolerated male-male erotic bonding, until the rise of the "gay rights" movement in the modern West.

I've got at least one expert that said such behavior was institutionalized way before the 20th Century:

    You say that I am ignoring the time-honored traditions of the Royal Navy? And what might they be? I shall tell you in three words: rum, buggery and the lash! Good morning, sirs!" - -Winston Churchill addressing the Sea Lords, 1912

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Thursday, October 02, 2003

Picked a Hell of a Week to Stop Sniffing Glue

Through the excellent J. Bradford DeLong (of Cal of course) I find that the almost as excellent Mark Kleimann (UCLA, alas) is outraged that:

    WHAT A COINCIDENCE!: One of the Saudi paymasters for Wahhabbist missionary work in the U.S. just happened to sleep in the same hotel as three of the 9-11 hijackers the night before the attack. When the FBI tried to interview him, he faked a seizure to get out of it. An FBI agent's recommendation that he not be allowed to leave the country was mysteriously not acted on, and he flew back to Saudi Arabia September 19. Five months later the Saudi government put him in charge of the Grand Mosque and the Prophet's Mosque, which means he helps run the kingdom's charities. [*] Strange world, isn't it?

Congratulations, Mark, Brad, and me. We've just brought the invasion of Iran (Look over there! Shiites with traces of enriched uranium!) forward by at least two weeks.

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The Many Aegean Stablehands

So, over at The Corner, it's beginning to look like a Mack Sennett short, with a group of sharp-elbowed bumblers tripping over each other as they move brimming pots and pans under the latest leak. Here's Rich Lowry, who is unaccustomed to such heavy lifting, explaining why Donovan McNabb sucks while sucking up to his boss, and brandishing that now well-worn conservative defense, "The Black Guy did it too!" echoing that Great Thinker, K. Lo. And for Rush, Kathryn Jean Lopez also gushes forth the full force of love, empathy and support she usually reserves only for fetuses and really cute priests.

But a controversy is just not a kerfuffle without Jonah Goldberg weighing in. The best line is of course from Jonah(and of course it's inadvertent humor):

    Inviting Rush Limbaugh to do color commentary and analysis and then being shocked, shocked when he says something controversial is outrageously stupid on ESPN's part. Why not hire Jerry Falwell and then fire him the first time he mentions the Bible?

It is so noted that Jonah thinks conservative commentators cannot be trusted to stay within the bounds of normal discourse, no matter how inappropriate the occasion. Or is he saying they're nothing without their schtick?

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Wednesday, October 01, 2003

When Good Things Happen to Bad People

Rush Limbaugh felt that he had to resign from his gig at ESPN. Good. I watched him make that remark, and then the stunned silence as three men who actually played the game thought about how to respond, then did.

We also now learn that scandal sheets are planning to say that Rush is addicted to prescription pain relievers and has been buying them illegally. Wow. Damn. I actually feel sorry for him on the second bit. Addiction is a nasty brutal burden to anyone's life. I hope he gets treatment and gets clean. Learning sympathy for other people would be a good thing too.

UPDATE: Looks like one of the side effects of the pills Rush allegedly abused, Lorcet, is sudden hearing loss.

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So over at the National Review (hey, once I get a job I'll renew my Salon subsription, ok?) Reid Buckley starts off a column like this:

    MADRID, SPAIN — I ask my (many) children, "Who are the most deadly boring people in the world? " Dog people, horse people, hunters and fishermen, golfers, or environmentalists?
    My children never get the answer right. It's the anti-Semite, neo-1920s variety. Recrudescence of which Europe is rife. ...

Ok, cool. Get exposed to a little more vocabulary than necessary, but learn a new way to slap down a bigot. I can get into that.

    ...The hostess is a petite and most attractive woman whose particulars I will disguise because they would drive you crazy trying to come up with her name. (She's wealthy, titled, and well known on two continents.) She leaned toward me confidingly at coffee time, saying, "You know what I mean, Reid. What can be more awful than to be surrounded by Jews?"

Okay, ready for the putdown?

    I hadn't been paying attention; but the ready imputation of class-collegial anti-Semitism irks me beyond measure. "Well," I retorted, "what about WASPs?"

Oh no. He got all arch on her ass, din he?

Reid then proceeds to tell two numinous anecdotes, one of which involved him getting his calling card duplicated in gold (at Tiffany's, of course) to taunt a potential Jewish investor in a scheme of his. She, not unreasonably, sees him as being in sympathy with her views.

    Well," she said glowingly, "so you do know what I mean when I speak of the Jews."

So he describes a meeting with a Masai chief. But be assured:

    "...The enemy is the vulgarian, of all tribes, nations, 'religious persuasions' (as the saying once went), and upper-crust classes."
    Which is the end of my story. I am steaming still.

Uhhh riiight. Ya know as far as methods for putting racist buttheads in their place I gotta go with Denis Leary or a quick session of the dozens.

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CA Republicans' Favorite Color? Brown

Never one to abandon a winning strategy, California Republicans have been casting about for some way to inject race into the recall. The usual tactic, stirring up fears of how brown or black folk will rise up against whitey didn't get much traction. So now the attention swings over to how awful Native Americans are for pandering to our weaknesses. You might remember how Rich Lowry of the National Review did research for this column:

Try substituting Jews, or maybe Black Real-Estate Investors who got sweetheart deals from political friends and how does it sound? Racist much? Needless to say Arnold got traction, and the endorsement of the California Republican Party by running ads featuring him saying that "He couldn't be bought"

One successful Californian Republican politician, Pete Wilson, rode "Fear of the Brown" to two terms as governor. But in recent years the party hasn't been able to elect anyone to statewide office. I think this current gambit will have a brief run, until Californians remember that we've suffered more from lily-white Texan and Carolinian energy traders than all the imagined excesses existing in the pea-sized minds of the racist fringe of the Republican party.

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Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Somewhere George Santayana Breathes a Bemused, Sad Sigh

Like so Many of a certain age, I can readily recall Friday night news shows in the late 60s, where Cronkite, or Huntley, or Brinkley would be reading, and behind his head would be two flags, and below them two numbers. The flags were US and North Vietnam, and the numbers were the body counts. Until now, I hadn't really seen the parallels to the "Best and the Brightest" mentality that was our biggest weakness in Vietnam.

Any serious thinker about Vietnam will tell you that the most powerful nation in the history of the world was defeated by its own arrogant mindset, one that used statistics to mask the truth. Once the veil was stripped away by the Tet Offensive (a battle we won by the way), the political will didn't exist to come up with a new way to address the war, so we gave up. We don't need another crop of dumbf**ks to do it to us again. Lay off the graphs guys. Oh yeah, heh. Indeed.

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Monday, September 29, 2003

An Updated Version of the Turner Diaries

Brought to you by none other than John Derbyshire on War on National Review Online

The Derb shouldn't have spent so much time in Alabama.

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San Diego Soliloquies