Thursday, April 26, 2007

Fantasy interview with Jon Stewart

Jon Stewart brought talking points to an interview with John McCain. To see it, go here, and click around on The Daily Show links. MGM will not allow it to be put on YouTube.

The Stewart vs. McCain exchange was polite, yet aggressive, to the credit of both men. Mr. McCain handled himself well, earning more respect from me. Still, I wish I had been sitting in his chair, so I could've responded to Mr. Stewart's talking points.

Stewart

Can we win the Iraqis over when we seem to almost consistently diminish their suffering?

Greg:
  • We are trying to win them to democracy, and away from sharia.
  • We are not trying to be touchy feely friends.
  • We are not encouraging them to wallow in victim status.

Stewart

Shouldn't we have metrics and timetables in Iraq?

Greg:

Our metric should be that a free Iraqi government can withstand challenges to its sovereignity.

i.e. our metric should be "victory."

Stewart

Why is Bush saying "I don't want to give a deadline, because that is surrender?"

McCain

Because it is [surrender].

Greg:

Thank you, Senator McCain.

Stewart

How do you quell a civil war when its not your country?

Greg

You support a democratic government against assaults from Sharia.

You support good in a fight against evil.

If Jefferson Davis' Confederates had wished to enslave the South inside a Sharia government, AND if the Sharia government would've then supported terror planners and financiers plotting attacks inside your own European nation, wouldn't you have supported Abraham Lincoln's government in the dispute against Jeff Davis?
Wouldn't you have supported democracy against Sharia? Good against evil? Self defense against exposing your throat?

Stewart:

the right say: if we don't fight them in Iraq they'll follow us home. My point is: they'll follow us home anyway, whether we are in Iraq or not.

Greg:

  1. if terror planners and financiers have their hands full in the mid-east, they will less frequently turn their attention towards the U.S. mainland.
  2. if the terror planners believe a provocation in the U.S. could provoke painful retaliation, pace our invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, then terror planners will be less likely to attack inside the U.S. mainland.
Both of these assertions look more likely to be correct than incorrect.

Further, if we pull out of Iraq under artificial pretenses, terror planners will sense weakness, and will be more likely to attack us in the future.

Stewart: Why should we give this strategy a chance? If the archetects that built a house w/o any doors and windows don't admit what they did, and continue to say "its your fault for not being able to see into it" then I don't understand how we're supposed to go forward.

Greg: what the? I'll try to be serious:

Mr. Stewart's first question:

"Why should we give this strategy a chance?"

Here's why:

  1. This is the first time we are fighting counterinsurgency warfare against the enemy in and around Baghdad. Before this, we merely attempted to maintain stability. There is a huge difference in the two concepts.
  2. It's working. The enemy is on the defensive. Our strategic goals are being accomplished.
  3. The surge is just getting started. We have many measures yet to implement.
Therefore, we should give the surge a chance.

Mr. Stewart's second question, summarized:

"Since the war leadership is hopelessly incompetent and messed up, how are we supposed to go forward?"

I reject the premise that our leadership is hopelessly incompetent.

Mr. Stewart possibly intended his premise to be this:

"It is impossible for a democratic Iraqi government to succeed. How are we to go forward when there is no hope for success?"

My response:

This is all about the definition of success. Utopia does not exist, and never has existed.

Stewart:

How are timetables, or criticizing the President, less supportive of the troops than extending their tours of duty from 12 to 15 months, putting them in stop/loss(i.e. adding the extra 90 days), and not having Walter Reed be up to snuff?

Greg:

this question is a classic of convolution.

Timetables, and irresponsible criticism of our war efforts, might contribute to the failure of the democratic Iraqi government.

Extending tours of duty, and substandard housing at Walter Reed, will not cause the democratic Iraqi government to fail.

There can be responsible criticism of our efforts. Senator McCain and Senator Lieberman have both leveled responsible criticism at our leadership - especially at Secretary Rumsfeld.

Re: Walter Reed:
the medical care is some of the best in the world. The housing problems are being corrected, by the VP, no less. Walter Reed is irrelevant to everything except cheap-shotting President Bush.

Re: extending tours of duty:
our military people signed up to serve. Possible extended tours of duty was part of their contract. It's tough, but it's not unfair.

This is Mr. Stewart's larger point about extended tours of duty:

terror and Sharia forces in and around Iraq are unworthy of further disturbing our military personnel's private lives.

Mr. Stewart and I disagree about the degree of danger and threat our nation faces.

**McCain now makes assertive points about our mission. McCain and Stewart argue over whether or not the troops believe in the mission. Stewart's passion is laudable, yet his arrogance is amazing. Even if Jon Stewart has visited Iraq - and maybe he has - I suspect Jon Stewart is a patriot - he nevertheless has spoken with a fraction of the number of troops and commanders McCain has spoken with. Stewart has never been briefed on our goals and successes and failures, and he doesn't have the military knowledge McCain has. Here, McCain looks knowledgable and assertive, and Stewart looks like an arrogant New York liberal comedian. The audience adoringly applauds Jon Stewart. They boo McCain, when McCain says our troops believe in the mission.**

Somewhere in the above, Stewart says 10,000 troops make no difference in Badhdad.

Greg:

I disagree:

  1. the numbers are now closer to 25,000 troops.
  2. these are combat troops - not support troops. An important point.
  3. the number of American combat troops in Baghdad will now be almost tripled, and they will be fighting using proactive, counterinsurgency tactics. The few thousand combat troops we did have in Baghdad were only fighting to maintain stability. Big, BIG difference. This has never been tried in Baghdad by us. We have, for 4 years, simply hoped Baghdad would pacify itself, via enjoying new freedoms and a stronger economy.
  4. Fourth: Dependable Iraqi army forces are now in the fight in Baghdad. Big, BIG difference. This has never before been the case in Baghdad.
Stewart:

all I'm saying is you cannot look a soldier in the eye and say questioning the President is less supportive of you than extending your tour of duty an additional 3 months.

Greg:

Let me try:
Soldier, I look you in the eye and say if Iraq's government can sustain itself, it will be a democratic blow to Islamism which will end up keeping America's children safer.

What's that, soldier? You say you've been saying the same thing, and that's exactly why you signed up to fight? Hmm. We better tell Jon Stewart.

What's that, soldier? You say irresponsible criticism of Pres. Bush emboldens our enemy, thus getting more American soldiers killed in Iraq? Hmm. We better tell Jon Stewart.

Somewhere in the exchange with McCain, Stewart calls the Bush Administration "almost criminal", to huge applause. I can't figure out what almost criminal action he is accusing the Bush Administration of, but that's okay. If I could figure it out, his statement would not be ad hominem, and that would shake the foundations of liberal discourse.

The audience laughs a ridiculing laugh at McCain, for doing no more than disagreeing with Stewart. McCain is being very polite. Though I'm not quoting him much, he is acquitting himself well.

Stewart is also being polite. It's just that his arguments are so riddled with false premises that it is difficult to find an argument which may be examined for either logic or fallacy.


Stewart:

I just want to say, the people I talk to realize we've got a [terrorism] problem, they just believe we are attacking the wrong target.

Greg:

sigh.

  1. Al Qaeda is in Iraq now. Is Al Qaeda the wrong target?
  2. Iran is the biggest state sponsor of terrorism in the world. Is Iran the wrong target?

The rightness or wrongness of the 2003 invasion has no bearing on what we should be doing in 2007.

Culling the archives

Over a few weeks, I gradually reduced The End Zone's archives, from more than 600 posts, down to a low of 95 posts. This post is number 100. I doubt I'll go below 100 again. I don't want to go any lower.

Whew. What an exercise in priorities! I culled posts I had spent hours on, between the writing and the rewriting. I culled "Dallas Mavericks Fan Jam 2005" - a subject I love, then kept:

"Rock Chunkin Muslim Protesters Throw Like Girls"

Famous Cousin Jeff made the cut with three posts:

Nancy Pelosi in Syria
Globetrotting Famous Cousin Jeff Weighs In On ANWR
TCU vs. Houston

I kept a grouping of "quote posts", just to have them on file. I could remove these, and save them in the document files of my home computer:

The Wookie Defense
The lamp of the body is the eye
e.e. cummings: what Got him was Nothing

I kept a good stock of photo posts. See if you can identify a common denominator:

Oscar "Do's" of Kate Winslett
Sarah and Emily Hughes
Protest Babes + Protest Cat

Kept a bunch opinion posts. I never took my opinions too seriously, though my writing is poor enough that it sometimes seems that way. In actuality, my opinions are forming as I write. Writing is the way I work things out in my mind. I maybe should work things out before I start, but I don't. This is not formal essay writing - it is blogging. So I charge ahead, and figure things out as I re-read, and edit, and see the logical holes in my thinking. Writing is a good way to discipline your thinking. Some favorites - which are not necessarily very disciplined!

1992 Cowboys-49ers NFC Championship
How to Apologize
ARod Magnum Opus: What Went Wrong in Arlington
Psychological Defense Mechanisms
Everything I Know About Batting
The Small Moments Fill Me With Wonder
End Zone World: High School Mascots
Unfinished

Best of all, a number of posts were saved for remembrance sake, in the true spirit of a web log, aka "blog":

Ft. Worth to Madison to Ft. Worth: Four Posts in 11/04 Archive
Denham to Ft. Worth: Two Posts in 12/04 Archive
Phantom Regiment, and Life
A Teenager's Room
Visiting the U.S.S. Lexington
Things to do when it snows

Monday, April 23, 2007

Movie Meme


1. Name a movie that you have seen more than 10 times.

I've probably seen "The Sound of Music" ten times. Or, I've at least seen or overheard it ten times, counting overhearing it on a backseat television, as I drove to Fitchburg or Denham Springs.

2. Name a movie that you’ve seen multiple times in the theater.

Raiders of the Lost Ark

3. Name an actor who would make you more inclined to see a movie.

Robert DeNiro; Jack Nicholson; Robert Duvall; Meryl Streep

4. Name an actor who would make you less likely to see a movie.

Sean Penn.

5. Name a movie that you can and do quote from.

The Godfather

6. Name a movie musical that you know all of the lyrics to all of the songs.

Urban Cowboy

7. Name a movie that you have been known to sing along with.

Sleepless in Seattle

8. Name a movie that you would recommend everyone see.

Its a Wonderful Life

9. Name a movie that you own.

The seven movies I own - all purchased out of the $1.99 or $2.99 sale bin:

No Way Out.
Enemies, a Love Story
Everybody's All American
Moonstruck
Do the Right Thing
Married to the Mob
Bullets Over Broadway

My favorite of these is "Moonstruck."

10. Name an actor that launched his/her entertainment career in another medium but who has surprised you with his/her acting chops.

Steve Martin; Harry Connick Jr.; Cher; Jennifer Lopez (seriously)

11. Have you ever seen a movie in a drive-in? If so, what?

The Fifth Element

12. Ever made out in a movie?

no

13. Name a movie that you keep meaning to see but just haven’t yet gotten around to it.

The Seven Samurai

14. Ever walked out of a movie?

Several times.

15. Name a movie that made you cry in the theater.

Actually, I tear up at lots of movies - more at the courageous stuff - less at the sad stuff, but, sometimes. I loved "Avalon." I teared up during it.

16. Popcorn?

Love it. Usually refuse to pay for it.

17. How often do you go to the movies (as opposed to renting them or watching them at home)?

Hardly ever, any more.

18. What’s the last movie you saw in the theater?

300

19. What’s your favorite/preferred genre of movie?

I like funny, quippy, romances: Casablanca, Woody Allen movies

20. What’s the first movie you remember seeing in the theater?

Bambi. It scared the heck out of me: the Mom died. Also "Old Yeller". same thing: scared and saddened me. Old Yeller died. That Disney stuff was murder on my psyche.

21. What movie do you wish you had never seen?

Jeez. There are lots, yet I can't think of a single one right now. I usually walk out, or change the channel, before they end.


Grease, for example. I can't say I wish I'd never seen it, b/c I've never seen it. I've been unable to force my way through watching it - twice.

Dirty Dancing = same thing. Can't make it through the movie. Tried at least two times.

Made it all the way through "The English Patient", always expecting something was about to happen. Nothing did.

Oh! "Sommersby", with Richard Gere and Jodi Foster. That movie sucked. Lots and lots of Richard Gere movies suck. You must be very careful about seeing one of his movies. For instance:

"Intersection", with Richard Gere and Lolita Davidovitch and Sharon Stone: Sucks. Big time.

Speaking of Sharon Stone: most of her movies also totally suck - with shining exceptions of

"Casino" and
"Basic Instinct".

Stay away from everything else she's ever done - except, EXCEPT:

"Action Jackson" - a perfect drive in movie, btw. A young Sharon, and an alluring Vanity, are both unattainably beautiful - unless you are wealthy, powerful, evil Craig T. Nelson - and (spoiler alert - as if this movie has a clever plot) then you attain both of them, before killing both of them. Sharon and Vanity both die absolutely beautifully. No actresses have ever died more attractively.

22. What is the weirdest movie you enjoyed?

Blue Velvet. "Enjoyed" may be the wrong adjective. The movie is excellent, yet, the first time I saw it, I walked out like this: "What the heck just happened?" I had to have the movie explained to me, then go back to see it again, in order to appreciate it.

Here's a weird movie I enjoyed, even as it freaked me out: "Angel Heart". Robert DeNiro is the devil. (Spoiler alerts) Mickey Rourke is dead and doesn't know it. The middle Cosby daughter gets killed, via gunshot to the vaginal cavity. She bleeds all over the sheets of her French Quarter hotel room.

23. What is the scariest movie you’ve seen?

Well, Angel Heart and Blue Velvet are right up there.

True Grit is up there - when Glen Campbell falls into the pit of rattlesnakes.

I also thought "Cujo" was terrifying, when the dog leaps through the window.

For both those scenes - rattlesnakes and Cujo, watched 15 years apart - I did the same thing: turned to the back of the theater, and watched the scenes projected from the mouth of the movie projector. I did not watch either scene on the movie screen. The mouth of the projector was scary enough for me.

24. What is the funniest movie you’ve seen?

"A Fish Called Wanda" inexplicably cracked me up.

"Something About Mary" - when I saw it in the theater, the audience was blowing snot they were laughing so hard. They were gasping for breath, and virtually rolling on the floor in hysterics. This movie doesn't wear as well over time. It was better the very first time you were confronted with the situations.

"The Jerk" - this movie gets better the more times you watch it.

"Monty Python’s the Quest for the Holy Grail" - also gets better the more you watch it.

The original "Airplane!" spoof was brilliant in its time.

A lot of Woody Allen cracks me up.

"The Gods Must Be Crazy"

The Coen Brothers movies, such as

"Blood Simple"
"Raising Arizona"
"Fargo"

The Christopher Guest movies:

"This is Spinal Tap"
"Waiting for Guffman"
"Best in Show"
"A Mighty Wind".

Friday, April 20, 2007

More Cathy Seipp



Removed Cathy's blog from my blogroll. It's time. Blogs go on.

Cathy, I know you understand: you are gone from the blogroll, and now belong to Google's search engine.

Salute, to a girl who enjoyed being a girl.

Mickey Kaus:

Cathy Seipp’s beauty attracted many people
[...]
But I liked her for another reason: She was so grouchy! She just wouldn’t take any s**t at all.
[...]
At a subsequent party to celebrate her remission, Amy Alkon reminds us, Cathy stood up and said

“I just want to let everyone know having cancer hasn’t made me a better person.”

That would have been hard to do.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Tammy Bruce on planting stories in the MSM



Tammy Bruce was once a feminist whiz girl. She became President of the Los Angeles chapter of NOW when she was in her mid twenties. She resigned from NOW in an ethics protest: NOW's national leaders clearly decreed that NOW's assets were to be used - not to promote women's issues - but rather to promote the Democratic Party. Bruce tried to persuade them off of their stance, then resigned.

Bruce is an interesting character: pro choice, a fiercely independent thinker, originally a mainstream liberal - she became an influencial radio talk show host, even as she evolved more and more to the political right. Bruce openly states that, at the beginning of her talk show career, she considered Christians to be neanderthals. Yet she came, very quickly, to appreciate Christians and conservatives for their genuine attempts to persuade through reason. Tammy Bruce says she was surrounded by angry activists most of her life. She says - and even wrote a book about, the unreasonable hostility of the political left to anyone - like Tammy Bruce, who disagrees with any portion of leftist dogma. Bruce wrote that the left, by resorting to reflexive and constant ad hominem, is losing its ability to logically and reasonably debate issues. She noted, with interest, during the early days of her radio show, that the Christians and conservatives who called her show seemed genuinely happy with their lives. They were different from the way she was accustomed to people being.

I have listened to Bruce on radio, and have read several of her writings. I consider her extremely credible. Last night, she gave a fascinating interview to Bill O'Reilly, part of which touched on interest groups planting stories with a willing and complicit media. You can see video of the interview for yourself: link, or you can read the last portion of the interview, which I have transcribed:
O'Reilly: Okay, now there is also a list [...] of mainstream media people [...] who are used by these far left websites, fed stuff directly to them, and then they put it in the papers.

Bruce: Oh yes. I used them. I mean, my best friend, when I was President of NOW, I could dial the phone, and I would move a story through all of the New York Times owned newspapers. It was a network that I could rely on. There I was, sitting in my basement, alone, running the National Organization for Women in Los Angeles, and as I would get an idea, and package it, I would move it nationally the next day. [...] I used, essentially what is a conspiratorial network of people in the newspaper and television industry at the time, and they would move whatever it is that I wanted moved.

O: And we have elements at NBC, [...] Newsweek, [...] the New York Times. But you're telling me that you actually had people that you could feed stories to

Bruce: Yes.

O: that they would print verbatim - wouldn't check em, wouldn't check em, you could just feed what you wanted to

Bruce: Well, yes

O: and pop it right out there [into the mainstream media].

Bruce: Yes. It was mostly, but, it was mostly theory. It was attitude. It was the idea itself. And we'd move it through the New York Times, and of course it would move to The Boston Globe, and and and

O:
Oh absolutely. And on the wire, and out [unintelligible]

Bruce: Yes

O: And now you have Rosie O'Donnell

Bruce: Well the wires were, the Rosies were, the wires were particularly important.

O:
Right. Right. And now you have Rosie O'Donnell, who is now doing this [moving someone's agenda] in the entertainment realm. They contact her

Bruce: Yes.

O: They feed her this crap

Bruce: Yes

O:
She spits it out

Bruce: [nodding yes]

O:
uh, in front of all the women who are watching her on ABC, and this is how it goes.

Bruce: Well you have multiple impressions using different media. You've got newspapers, and of course people like [NYT columnist] Frank Rich; its moved through the guarantors, uh, on camera, like Rosie O'Donnell. So - regular Americans hear it from so many different avenues

O: that they believe it

Bruce: that they believe its true

O:
yeah

Bruce: and, but, they [American people] get really immersed in it. Our job is, and part of what I see as my job now, is to expose that method, so that Americans can finally make up their own mind. And that [happens] through talk radio and the Internet.


Sunday, April 15, 2007

Guest Post: Nancy Pelosi in Syria

Guest posted - literally "POST - ed" - by Famous Cousin Jeff:

Two things bother me about Nancy Pelosi's recent trip to Damascus:

1. What was she possibly thinking? Was she intentionally trying to harm our country or just too stupid to realize what she was doing? I'm not sure which to believe or which is more bothersome. There are numerous reasonable positions on what might be the best approach to dealing with the Middle East situation, but Congressmen flying around the world proclaming dissident positions is not one of them. Pelosi's trip is comparable to Jane Fonda's trip to Hanoi more than to any true diplomatic mission.

I have to think that Pelosi knows this. She is in a strong position within the Government to influence the debate and to work towards what she believes is a better policy for our Government. But to do this in a responsible manner would not get her on the nightly news and front page. I suspect that she knew her trip was not the best approach for our foreign policy, our nation, or our soldiers, but she decided too overlook this in favor of increased media coverage. Not unexpectedly, Nancy Pelosi has to be added to the scrap heap of endless incompetent leaders in Washington that are concerned about power first, and policy a very distant second.

2. Why the heck wasn't the Bush Administration in Damascus first? Syria has been for years a moderate government in the middle of the Mid East. I'm not pretending that they are perfect (or even close to perfect), but we should be encouraging a strong, authoritative, non fundamentalist Muslim, reasonably economically successful government in the Middle East. We should be building a relationship with the Syrian Govenment, not holding on to the outdated Cold War anti-Syria mentality. Syria is not a significant threat to Israel anymore. The primary threat to Israel is Iran. That's why Syria is important. Since Iraq is likely to end up as an Iranian puppet state, Syria will be on the front line on the fight to prevent Iranian dominance of the whole region. Syria's government is as concerned about Islamic funadamentalist as we are. This is common ground that we need to build on. I didn't read the Iraq Commission report, but I believe they said something similar to this. Why isn't the Bush Administration willing to consider any approches beyond their continuing failed policies?

Is the Bush Administrations unwillingness to listen to or consider alternative approaches enough that I should fly off to Damascus to proclaim my anti-Americanism? No, it's not and it shouldn't have been enough for Nancy Pelosi either.





I am grateful to Jeff for this post. I am more interested in what a media and internet consumer like Jeff thinks, and I am less interested in generating my own words about Nancy Pelosi's cynical stunt.

I agree with Jeff all the way through Point #1. He speaks for me.

We disagree, respectfully and politely, about Point #2. I believe the Bush Administration has been engaged with Syria all along, and is strategically isolating Assad in order to diplomatically pressure him.

I am thankful to know Jeff's thoughts. I wondered how much of the informed public saw this "diplomacy" issue as I did, vs. how much of the informed public disagreed with me. Jeff's thoughts are a barometer.

Next on Speaker Nancy Pelosi's diplomatic agenda: visiting Iran. Seriously. She is heading in that direction, unless a public/media outcry causes her to change her plans. Congressman Tom Lantos, Speaker Pelosi's main foreign policy advisor, said this during the trip to Damascus:
"We have an alternative Democratic foreign policy."

Well! [Sarcasm alert] That's just as the framers designed the Constitution, and just as American voters intended: 535 Congressional foreign policies + the President's foreign policy + the VP's foreign policy! On to Tehran, Nancy and Tom!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

MKH: "I'm just sayin...."

Mary Katherine Ham, who I obviously cannot get enough of lately, does a serious interview with Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings, then ends with this:

MKH: “Madame Secretary, are you familiar with ‘Battlestar Galactica’?’

Spellings: “A little.”

MKH: “Well, in ‘Battlestar Galactica, the whole government and much of the nation is wiped out in an attack, which means the Secretary of Education must take charge and save humanity from murderous, intelligent, alien robots.”

Spellings: “Yes?”

MKH: “I’m just sayin’, if it came down to it, would you be ready for something like that?”

Spellings: “I am ready and willing to do battle with anyone who would limit opportunities for the schoolchildren of America,” she laughed.
h/t Katie Favazza



Something intriguing about MKH, and which I notice especially in clips of her on cable TV, such as on MSNBC or CNN, for instance, is the momentary stage of maturity she inhabits: she is smart, funny, and acquainted with facts as only bloggers currently are - and as no TV media stars currently are - b/c TV media stars only consume drive-by media, and drive-by media skews and limits the information it puts out. So, she makes very good points on cable TV, as persons possessing superior information will.

Yet, as smart and funny as she is, she is still appealingly awkward at times. She has not settled into her adultness. She has not settled into her adult hairstyle, clothing style, or knowledgeable self confidence. She is getting there. She may settle in any moment, or any month, or any year. But she is not there yet, and her momentary suspension, in this particular stage of her maturity, is appealing. We've all gone through it. We've all watched, and still watch, friends and loved ones go through it. It is sweet to watch all of them go through it - including MKH.

It will end soon. A month from now, or a year from now, MKH may have fully settled into her adultness. Stages of maturation are fleeting. But she's not there yet, even though she is oh-so-close. Its fun to watch - to savor, even - where she is.

Extra - Flashback:
Mary Katherine Ham, star of her own public service videos.
The final line of the video credits:
"No animals were harmed in the making of this video. Only, like, slightly annoyed."

Delicious Conservatives, Part 3: Peep Show

Katie Favazza and Mary Katherine Ham round up the news in 90 seconds.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Our Intellectual Overlords, Part II

In case you missed it: Our Intellectual Overlords, Part I Part I looked at the payoff for being on the left: with some rote memorization of leftist dogma, you get to be an intellectual overlord: superior to, and lording over, the rest of us.

Today's Part II examines the rationales behind much leftist dogma. I turn Part II over to Evan
Sayet: former liberal; and former writer for Bill Maher's Politically Incorrect show on HBO - back in it's original days, when Maher's show was still funny, before it degenerated into bitterness. Mr. Sayet speaks, with charisma and humor and insight, in this videotaped speech from the Heritage Club: link.

The speech is entertaining, yet long(about 35 minutes). I can read faster than I can listen. I can understand better when I write things out. So, I took notes of the speech, and, for my sake as well as yours, I present a synopsis of Mr.
Sayet's speech below. I invite you to listen, or read, and to enjoy a real political discussion - of the type which rarely happens anymore. Enjoy an opportunity to think.

Notes of Evan
Sayet's speech before the Heritage Club:

***********************************************

Growing up I knew one thing: Dems are good and Repubs are evil.

I tell this story - its not true, but it shows what happened to me - about an old friend:


He constantly complains about his wife, and you smile and think:
he doesn't really hate his wife. Then one day, his wife is getting beaten up. You jump up: "Lets go save her!" He says: "Nah. I'm sure she deserves it", and you realize: he really does hate his wife.

That's what happened to me on 9/11. My friends complained for years about our nation, and I thought: they don't really hate America. Then 9/11 happened, and I jumped up: "America's in trouble, lets go help her!" My friends said: "Nah, I'm sure she deserves it.", and I realized liberals really do hate America. I started a quest to understand the mindset. How could this be?

I discovered that Democrats are wrong on every issue - as wrong as wrong can be.

It's not an accident they are wrong. It's part of a philosophy which invariably results in siding with:

  • evil over good,
  • wrong over right,
  • and the behaviors that lead to failure over the behaviors that lead to success

Liberals side with evil. Are they evil? No.

Are they stupid? No. Besides, if it was just stupidity, they'd be right more often. Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.

Whats their plan? How do liberals think they are making a better world?

I discovered the modern liberal looks back on thousands of years of human civilization, and knows only one thing for sure:

None of the ideas mankind has come up with, none of the:

  • religions
  • philosophies,
  • ideologies
  • forms of government,

none have succeeded in creating a world devoid of

  • war
  • poverty
  • crime
  • and injustice.

Liberals are convinced that since all of these ideas of man have proven to be wrong, the real cause of war, poverty, crime, and injustice can only be found in the attempt to be right.

Their thinking is this:

  1. If nobody ever thought to be right, what would we disagree about?
  2. If we didn't disagree, surely we wouldn't fight.
  3. Without fighting there would be no war.
  4. Without war there would be no poverty.
  5. Without poverty there would be no crime.
  6. Without crime there would be no injustice.

Its a Utopian vision.

All that's required to usher in this utopia is the rejection of all

  • fact
  • reason
  • evidence
  • logic
  • truth
  • morality
  • and decency

These are all the tools you and I use in our attempts to be better people, and to make the world more right, by trying to be right, by siding with right, by recognizing what is right and moving towards it.

When this first started to dawn on me, I would take my liberal friends out and question them...

What you have is people who think the best way to eliminate rational thought, and the best way to eliminate the attempt to be right, is to
work always to prove that right isn't right, and to prove that wrong isn't wrong.

They want to bring about a philosophy like John Lennon's song:

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace

While trying to attain that goal, everything they do - all media, etc - has one criteria/result:

  • Does it tear down what is good, and elevate what you and I would say is evil?
  • Does it tear down what is right, and elevate what you and I would say is wrong?
  • Does it tear down the behaviors that lead to success, and elevate what you and I would say are the behaviors that lead to failure?

Their goal is to tear down everything, until there is nothing left to believe in. There is no liberal standard for truth, beauty, and justice.

Abu ghraib: 44 days on front page of NYTimes: Why? It met one criteria: you think America is good? We found something to show you America is not that good.

Koran's being flushed at Guantanamo? It meets no journalistic standard, and it's an impossible story. No one can flush a book down a toilet. Why did Newsweek run a bogus, illogical story? Because nothing mattered to Newsweek, except that the story attacked America.

There is no artistic standard, or aesthetic criteria, by which a jar of urine with a cross in it is beautiful. No one says: "lets take down the Monet and put up the jar of urine." But it met the one and only standard of art that exists for the modern liberal [tear down what our society values].

Not everyone who voted for Kerry is aware of the leftist blueprint to eliminate anything worth standing up for. The elitists have succeeded in indoctrinating our children into a cult of indiscriminateness. They do this by teaching our children that rational and moral thought is an act of bigotry, and

  • that no matter how sincerely you may seek to gather the facts,
  • that no matter how earnestly you may look at the evidence,
  • that no matter how disciplined you may try to be in your reasoning,

your conclusion is going to be so tainted by

  • your personal bigotries
  • and your upbringing
  • and your religion
  • and the color of your skin
  • and by the nation of your great great grandparents birth,

that no matter what your conclusion, it is useless. Your conclusion is nothing other than a reflection of your bigotries.

Therefore, for elite leftists, the only way to eliminate bigotry is to eliminate rational thought.

My thinking is greatly influenced by a book Allen Bloom wrote in 1987:
"The Closing of the American Mind."

Bloom asked himself: why were his university students suddenly so stupid? He finally realized they had been raised to believe
indiscriminateness is a moral imperative, because its opposite is the evil of having discriminated. In order to eliminate discrimination the modern liberal has opted to become utterly indiscriminate.

For example, in airports, we intentionally pretend we don't know some things we do know.


The problem is that the ability to discriminate is the essence of rational thought. So, quite literally, we are dealing with a whole of Western Europe and today's Democratic Party being dominated by this philosophy that rejects rational thought as a hate crime.

So what you're left with, after 10 - 15 - 20 years in the indoctrination centers that our schools have become, are citizens of voting age who, on the one hand, are utterly unwilling and incapable of critically judging the merits of the
positions they hold, and have held, unquestioned, since they were 5 years old.

Its not that liberals are unaware of all the adult things we are aware of. It is that they need to reject them in order to remain in their utopia, which they are told is the only hope for mankind: mindless
indiscriminateness.

You are left with adults of voting age who not only cannot judge their own positions, but are virulently antagonistic to any position other than their own. Why? When you are brought up to believe
indiscriminateness is a moral imperative, any position other than your own must've employed discrimination in it's formulation. Any form of discrimination is "Discrimination = Bad!" They know theirs is a position arrived at through the moral imperative of indiscriminateness, therefore any position other than their own must've been arrived at through the employment of discrimination - which makes you not just wrong, on your issues and your stances, but, more importantly: bigoted.

They don't even think about your issues and your stances. They don't have to. Even if they were willing to, even if they were able to, they don't need to. Would you sit and contemplate Hitler's Social Security policy? No. You would fight Hitler.

What you're left with, coming out of the schools, is people who quite literally cannot differentiate between

  • good and evil,
  • right and wrong,
  • better and worse.

Here's a key: Indiscriminateness of thought does not lead to indiscriminateness of policy. Indiscriminateness of thought invariably leads the modern liberal to side with

  • evil over good,
  • wrong over right,
  • and the behaviors that lead to failure over those that lead to success.

Why? Because in a world where no behavior is to be deemed better than any other, then your expectation is that all behavior should lead to equally good outcomes.

You and I know different behaviors lead to different outcomes, because we think. But to the modern liberal, who cannot make that judgment, must not make that judgment - because that would be discriminating, they have no explanation.

So the only explanation for success has to be that somehow success has cheated. Success, simply by its existence, is proof positive to the modern liberal of some kind of chicanery and likely bigotry.

Failure, simply by its existence, is proof to them of victimization.

The same is true for good and evil. Since nothing can be deemed good, and nothing can be deemed evil, that which society does recognize as good must be the beneficiary of some sort of prejudice. That which society recognizes as evil must be the victim of that prejudice.


Many rank and file Democrats embrace their
victimhood. They mindlessly accept whatever policy tears down good things:

  • America
  • Israel
  • Walmart.

They will elevate what is evil, until everything meets in the middle, and there is nothing left to fight about [like John Lennon's song].

Once you belong to this cult of indiscriminateness, there is no other conclusion you can come to other than that good is evil, and that evil is the victim of good.

If there is no objective difference between the terrorist and the freedom fighter, then why teach George Washington is a hero, and
Yasser Arafat and Saddam Hussein are villains? You and I know why, b/c we think. Washington risked his personal fortune to lead his troops into battle, against uniformed forces, in a noble cause. Yasser Arafat stole his people's money and sent 14 year olds into battle in order to prop up his corrupt dictatorship. Pretty villainous stuff. We can see that. But to the folks at the NYTimes, who have established as official policy that there is no objective difference between the terrorist and the freedom fighter, "why do we teach our children that George Washington is a hero?" They've no idea. Their only possible explanation is b/c George Washington was a white Christian of European descent. If there is no difference in the behavior of the terrorists, why do we teach that Yasser Arafat and Saddam Hussein are villains? There can be no reason other than they are darker skinned Muslims of Middle Eastern birth.

Once you subscribe to
indiscriminateness, anything other than indiscriminateness is the evil of having discriminated.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Things to do when it snows

in Ft. Worth, on Easter weekend:

#27: mow the lawn

...in your beautiful LSU sweatshirt, a gift from 16 months ago, which you've never worn - b/c its a heavy sweatshirt, and it just never gets cold enough to wear it - which you become certain of when you don the sweatshirt, only to then snap a sales tag from inside the neck of the sweatshirt.

And, wouldn't you know it, the sweatshirt becomes too hot inside of 10 minutes. So you hang it, and don a windbreaker, which becomes too hot inside of 10 more minutes. So you hang it, and finish the lawn, in the skittering/swirling snow, wearing two sturdy t-shirts. You mow an artistic diagonal cut.