Every time a hippie flaps his wings

Pro-torture Vichy liberal scum Jonathan Alter:

Oh, Ralph. If Ralph Nader hadn’t gotten under Lewis Powell’s skin, we wouldn’t be having these arguments over whether the individual mandate in Obamacare is unconstitutional.

And “stand your ground” laws — like the one at issue in the Trayvon Martin case — wouldn’t stand a chance in the rest of the country.

And free market conservatives would not be unconsciously defying police and doing the bidding of the National Rifle Association.

Yes, like Edward Lorenz’s “butterfly effect” (where the course of a tornado can be traced all the way back to the flapping of a butterfly’s wings thousands of miles away), it’s all connected, and in ways that should make us more conscious of how we associate ourselves with other political insects.

The facile nihilistic idiocy here is beyond anything I’ve seen recently. It doesn’t even rise to the level of Slate-style contrarianism.

Your quote for the day, from Mark Twain:

When I finished Carlyle’s French Revolution in 1871, I was a Girondin; every time I have read it since, I have read it differently – being influenced and changed, little by little, by life and environment … and now I lay the book down once more, and recognize that I am a Sansculotte! – And not a pale, characterless Sansculotte, but a Marat.


I try not to nutpick too much, but this (via Gex) is just too fucking funny:

The game is to see how many comments in a foxnews.com article that has nothing to do with President Obama do you need to read before somebody says something bad about President Obama. I call it “how many comments in a foxnews.com article that has nothing to do with President Obama do you need to read before somebody says something bad about President Obama”.

Not one article goes past 22 comments before they start bashing Obama. The best part is the names they make for Obama, such as “Oinkbama”.

This, from WND via reader C is pretty awesome too:

After Hawaii, Obama spent 13 not-so-swinging single years on the mainland before he married Michelle in 1992. In “Dreams,” Obama mentions only one girlfriend from that period, a woman who looks and lived suspiciously like Bill Ayers’ old flame, Diana Oughton.

Obama biographer Christopher Andersen tried to confirm this woman’s identity but made little headway. “No one,” he writes, “including his roommate and closest friend at the time, Siddiqi, knew of this mysterious lover’s existence.”

Word to the AP: If you want to write a story about a sexually confused individual, you don’t have to go to Indonesia to find one.

The hatred the 27 percenters have for Obama is unreal. But, hey, onetime an anonymous commenter at Daily Kos compared Bush to Hitler, so it’s all the same.

Bully For You, America

Reasonoid Nick Gillespie takes to the WSJ to let America know there’s no such thing as a bullying crisis in schools and neighborhoods as he rips into the new film “Bully”.

Now that schools are peanut-free, latex-free and soda-free, parents, administrators and teachers have got to worry about something. Since most kids now have access to cable TV, the Internet, unlimited talk and texting, college and a world of opportunities that was unimaginable even 20 years ago, it seems that adults have responded by becoming ever more overprotective and thin-skinned.

Kids might be fatter than they used to be, but by most standards they are safer and better-behaved than they were when I was growing up in the 1970s and ’80s. Infant and adolescent mortality, accidents, sex and drug use—all are down from their levels of a few decades ago. Acceptance of homosexuality is up, especially among younger Americans. But given today’s rhetoric about bullying, you could be forgiven for thinking that kids today are not simply reading and watching grim, postapocalyptic fantasies like “The Hunger Games” but actually inhabiting such terrifying terrain, a world where “Lord of the Flies” meets “Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior,” presided over by Voldemort.

Stop whining.  Life is Darwinian.  Deal with it, you little ferrets.

When it comes to bullying numbers, long-term trends are less clear. The makers of “Bully” say that “over 13 million American kids will be bullied this year,” and estimates of the percentage of students who are bullied in a given year range from 20% to 70%. NCES changed the way it tabulated bullying incidents in 2005 and cautions against using earlier data. Its biennial reports find that 28% of students ages 12-18 reported being bullied in 2005; that percentage rose to 32% in 2007, before dropping back to 28% in 2009 (the most recent year for which data are available). Such numbers strongly suggest that there is no epidemic afoot (though one wonders if the new anti-bullying laws and media campaigns might lead to more reports going forward).

The most common bullying behaviors reported include being “made fun of, called names, or insulted” (reported by about 19% of victims in 2009) and being made the “subject of rumors” (16%). Nine percent of victims reported being “pushed, shoved, tripped, or spit on,” and 6% reported being “threatened with harm.” Though it may not be surprising that bullying mostly happens during the school day, it is stunning to learn that the most common locations for bullying are inside classrooms, in hallways and stairwells, and on playgrounds—areas ostensibly patrolled by teachers and administrators.

Everything’s fine.  You know, except for the kids driven to suicide for being gay or fat or different or getting shot for walking down the street with an iced tea and a bag of candy, that is.  Jesus launch the helicarrier.  It’s funny how these guys believe in the free market so much until it comes to the flash mobs actually getting called on ruining a kid’s life, but I guess that’s just culling the weak, right?

Open Thread

I’m just a hot mess today. I don’t know what I want for dinner, I have no idea what I want to do tonight, blah blah blah.

I think I may just go with breakfast for dinner. Fry up some green tomatoes and eggs and potatoes.

Not Getting It At All

Rich “starbursts” Lowry opens up a can of silly in the National Review with a piece titled “The Murders That Don’t Count: In America, the lives of young black people are cheap, unless they happen to fit the right agenda.” Already groaning? Don’t stop now. It gets worse:

Delric Miller IV died in a hail of bullets a month ago. When someone fired 37 AK-47 rounds into his Detroit home at 4:30 a.m., he was mortally wounded while dozing on the couch. He was nine months old. No one made the multicolored teething ring he got for Christmas or his toy hammer into a national symbol of random violence.

Last year, Charinez Jefferson, 17, was shot and killed on a Chicago street. “She begged the shooter not to shoot her because she was pregnant,” a pastor explained. The alleged assailant, Timothy Jones, 18, shot her in the head, chest and back after seeing her walking with a rival gang member. New York Times columnist Charles Blow did not write a column about Jefferson’s killing as a symbol of the perils of being a young black woman in America.

Last June, a stray bullet from a confrontation on a Brighton Beach, N.Y., boardwalk killed 16-year-old Tysha Jones as she sat on a bench. A 19-year-old man, out for revenge after an earlier scuffle on the boardwalk, was charged in the shooting. Tysha’s heartbroken mother was not featured on all the national TV shows.

In January, 12-year-old Kade’jah Davis was shot and killed when, allegedly, 19-year-old Joshua Brown showed up at her Detroit house to demand the return of a cellphone from Davis’ mother. When Brown didn’t get the phone, he fired shots through the front door. No one held high-profile street protests to denounce gunplay over such trifles.

You have to work to be this obtuse. In each and every case listed above, the police and authorities have arrested and charged the murderer, or are working nonstop to discover who the murderers are and track them down and prosecute them.

That’s one reason why the Trayvon Martin case is different. We know precisely who killed him, yet he walks free and clear. That is why the outrage is so loud. Trayvon Martin was killed for the crime of walking while black, the cops did nothing to investigate his death and appear to be actively impeding any investigation, they basically gave his killer a pat on the back before sending him on his way, and then they slapped a John Doe tag on his corpse and threw him into the morgue’s lost and found pile.

Yes, each and everyone of the murders that halfwit Lowry mentioned is awful. Yes, black on black crime is awful. But in each case above, the victim’s family are receiving some semblance of justice.

And that is all anyone wants for Trayvon Martin. Justice.

Lowry just can’t be that stupid.

You know what I n-n-n-need

It’s the last day of the first quarter, so let’s go out with a bang.


Goal Thermometer


Goal Thermometer

I will add one in for the Scott Walker recall if I can find a link.

I need a sanctified mind to help me out right now

Religion is always a contentious topic ’round these parts, but I found the discussion of ultra-orthodox Judaism in this thread very interesting, so I thought I might do another free-wheeling religious thread so we can all scream at each other about how we’re all ignorant bigots (though mostly that only happens when it’s Catholicism we’re discussing).

By chance, I’ve had a few long discussions with Hindu friends of mine recently, one a practicing believer, the other a cultural Hindu who has read a lot about religions but doesn’t believe or practice (beyond the annual excruciating Diwali festivities). One explained to me why people in India could build palaces next to ghettos and not have the plebes come and kill them and steal all their shit, because violent acts give you bad karma. The other told me that he thought the big difference between Hinduism/Budhism and western religions is that in western religion, you can repent and not have to pay for your crimes, whereas in eastern religions, you’d get my name’s Krish, and you ain’t talking your way out of this shit. And then I read in a Times article about Tibetan dumplings (it was annoying, so I’m not going to link) that Tibetans liked red meat because the karmic load of killing a single large yak was not as bad as killing a bunch of smaller, say, chickens.

Is that accurate, that the idea that you’ll have to pay via reincarnation for everything you do wrong — no excuses — is something that makes eastern religions fundamentally different from western ones?