May 31, 2009

It's the overnight thread show, brought to you by tmi3rd and genghis!
— Open Blog

Notice: Posted by permission of AceCorp LLC. Please e-mail overnight open thread tips to xgenghisx@gmail.com. Otherwise send tips to Ace.

Posted by: Open Blog at 06:07 PM | Comments (10)
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Some better news on a day of grim news... (tmi3rd)
— Open Blog

Altamont, NY, gathered to thank three Congressional Medal of Honor Winners Recipients.

From the Albany Times-Union:

"I think I can say for all of us veterans, thank you to the town of Altamont," said John Finn of San Diego, a Medal of Honor recipient who has friends locally. He also celebrated his 100th birthday Sunday with a cake and a round of patriotic songs. He actually turns 100 next month.

Finn, who served in the U.S. Navy, was joined by two other medal honorees, Army veterans Francis Currey, 83, of Selkirk, and Nicholas Oresko, 92, of New Jersey.


On a day where we've seen a whole lot of evil, it is still worth noting that we're surrounded by a whole lot of good. To paraphrase some Jedi quotation somewhere, "...in the presence of even the tiniest spark, darkness is driven away. In the presence of good, evil can only retreat."

Thanks always to these brave men, and to all of you who have donned your country's uniform. May you always be a beacon of good... a beacon of light.


Update: CavMedic asked that I alter the wording to call them recipients, not winners, as it's not a contest. So noted, and so altered. Thanks again.

Posted with permission from Ace. To my knowledge, Open Blog is not currently declared.

Posted by: Open Blog at 03:11 PM | Comments (4)
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Susan Boyle Loses to Dance Troupe, Pottymouth
— Ace

I never got this whole deal. I never thought she was a remarkable singer -- just competent and good. And people were giving her extra credit for being unattractive. Which I didn't get -- who says unattractive people don't have good singing voices? Why should we be terribly surprised by this? We're no longer surprised by blind musicians, after all.

And unattractive musicians aren't exactly uncommon. Joey Ramone just emailed me to say "Yeh."

Anyway, after losing a bit of media glow after cursing a couple of times in public (including saying "F--- you" to a competitor's performance on tv), the "hirsuit frump" lost.

Althouse thinks it "feels right" that she lost after having acted "bitchy" in public. Meh. In one case strangers were baiting her, trying to "wind her up" as the British say.

I'm reminded of Barry Gibbs (or one of the BeeGees, anyway) talking about "first fame" and how everyone acts like a dick during it. Bill Murray, too (I think), said something along the lines of "it's not whether you act like an a-hole when you first become famous -- everyone does -- but how much of an a-hole you act like and for how long and how quickly you can get back to being human again."

Then again, I thought the hype was way out proportion to her actual ability and I'm not surprised her support turned out to be soft and evanescent.


Posted by: Ace at 08:53 AM | Comments (6)
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Late-Term Abortionist Shot to Death in Church in Likely Assassination
— Ace

I'm kind of afraid to post this.

George Tiller, the Wichita doctor who became a national lightning rod in the debate over abortion, was shot to death this morning as he walked into church services.

Tiller, 67, was shot just after 10 a.m. at Reformation Lutheran Church at 7601 E. 13th, where he was a member of the congregation. Witnesses and a police source confirmed Tiller was the victim.

No information has been released about whether a suspect is in custody.

...

Tiller has long been a focal point of protest by abortion opponents because his clinic, Women's Health Care Services at 5701 E. Kellogg, is one of the few in the country where late-term abortions are performed.

Protesters blockaded Tiller's clinic during Operation Rescue's "Summer of Mercy" protests during the summer of 1991, and Tiller was shot by Rachelle Shannon at his clinic in 1993.

Tiller was wounded in both arms, and Shannon remains in prison for the shooting.

Thanks to gg.

Posted by: Ace at 07:20 AM | Comments (5)
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The Obama's Date Night
— DrewM

So, what did you do last night? I'm guessing it didn't involve 3 Air Force jets, several USMC helicopters and adoring crowds.

"I am taking my wife to New York City because I promised her during the campaign that I would take her to a Broadway show after it was all finished," the president said yesterday after touching down at JFK for an intimate night on the town.

...The first stop after touch ing down at JFK was a meal at a low-key, but elegant, Greenwich Village restau rant, Blue Hill, which boasts farm fresh, locally grown dishes.

...Then it was up to Broadway, where they had tickets at the Belasco Theatre for "Joe Turner's Come and Gone," a play by August Wilson about a man coming to terms with the history of slavery.

The final tab for the President's night out....

Dinner and two tickets? A couple of hundred bucks

Transportation and security? Certainly well north of $100,000 (uneducated guess...it probably approaches a $1,000,000 or more)

Knowing the press has your back? Priceless.

I'm of two mind about this. A President shouldn't be a prisoner in the White House and the simple fact is it's expensive for him to do anything. It's just the reality of the modern world.

What does bother me is that had George W. Bush or any Republican had done this, especially during this economy, the Democrats and their press mouthpieces would be going nuts.

Just another one for the file I guess.

Of course the real question is, did the President 'get lucky' last night?

Posted by: DrewM at 05:22 AM | Comments (16)
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Lindsey Graham Notices Obama is Speaking for Sotomayer
— Dave in Texas

I wondered about this my own self. How come she's not walking back her comments?

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., told "FOX News Sunday" he wasn't buying President Obama's attempt to walk back his Supreme Court nominee's controversial statement from 2001. Obama said Friday that given the chance Sotomayor would have "restated" that comment, and that she was merely trying to express how her experiences give her perspective on others' hardships.

"She didn't say that at all," Graham countered Sunday, suggesting Sotomayor's statement raises questions about her objectivity.

"What she said is that based on her life experiences is that she thought a Latina woman, somebody with her background, would be a better judge than a guy like me -- a white guy from South Carolina," Graham said. "It is troubling, and it's inappropriate and I hope she'll apologize."

I won't believe her either, because I don't have a journalism degree. I'm just waiting for her to make the effort. Has she yet?

Also, Lindsey, you goof. Thanks for setting up the "apology" settlement.

AH. DrewM reminds me this isn't unusual.

FINE.

Lindsey is still a goof for dangling the apology hook.

Posted by: Dave in Texas at 05:11 AM | Comments (10)
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May 30, 2009

Overnight open thread
— Open Blog

Notice: Posted by permission of AceCorp LLC.

Posted by: Open Blog at 04:00 PM | Comments (3)
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The Must See Movie Of The Year
— DrewM

The trailer is a little slow to get going but it's worth it. Trust me.

If you look very closely, I think you can see Brian Dennehy.

Next time your wife or girlfriend (roll with me on this) complains you never want to see any fancy foreign films with subtitles, fire up this baby.

(via Allah's Twitter feed)

Posted by: DrewM at 01:47 PM | Comments (18)
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An Attorney's Take On SotoMayor
— LauraW

Blackiswhite registers his gut-rumblings about the much-circulated 'wise Latina woman' quote and others. Blackiswhite has some other takes on the situation and his post is well worth reading in its entirety.

He points out that her statements are not only overtly and breathtakingly racist, as we have been arguing, but also that they violate the American Bar Association's Model Code of Judicial Conduct.

From BiW's caption of the commentary to Canon 1 of the Code:

Deference to the judgments and rulings of courts depends upon public confidence in the integrity and independence of judges. The integrity and independence of judges depends in turn upon their acting without fear or favor. A judiciary of integrity is one in which judges are known for their probity, fairness, honesty, uprightness, and soundness of character. An independent judiciary is one free of inappropriate outside influences.

It is entirely arguable now, whether or not La Raza is an 'inappropriate outside influence' anymore, since they've been invited to help shape US immigration policy. Yeah, that was snark. Well, half-snark.

However, there's no doubt about the 'favor' of this judge; that she believes white men to be inferior to her. That her ethnicity and background somehow convey upon her a greater natural ability to adjudicate. Why not also say that her ethnicity and gender also convey upon her a heightened natural ability to pick lettuce? Because that would be just as racist. This person has told us in no uncertain terms that she is not inspiring. Not intelligent.

Not judicial material.

He also quotes this part of the code regarding the appearance of impropriety.

The test for appearance of impropriety is whether the conduct would create in reasonable minds a perception that the judge’s ability to carry out judicial responsibilities with integrity, impartiality and competence is impaired.

Well, besides her aforementioned OVERT, OBVIOUS, AND PRECISELY ENUNCIATED RACISM, there's this.

That she believes appellate courts are "where policy is made." This link goes to a short clip of Sotomayor flaunting her huge brain and careful reason on youtube.

Which hardly inspires the confidence of people bringing cases before her, as they will (quite reasonably) believe that she will use any opportunity to use cases to shape policy in a leftward direction, rather than judge their cases fairly and according to established law. Thus eroding the public trust and confidence in the judiciary. Which according to the Code, is a major no-no.

From Blackiswhite:

I fear that she will be confirmed and appointed to the Supreme Court, and I reluctantly wonder how long I will be able to continue in my role as an officer of the court when I have no confidence in the judicial nominees of the government. It is kind of hard to convince your clients that they should be patient and work within the system when you yourself have doubts about its integrity. We all are damaged when Themis (or her younger Roman cousin Justicia) peeks, and the Pretender dishonors our entire profession with a nominee suffering from such obvious and open impairments to her ability to impartially perform her duties.

My emphasis.
Thanks to Blackiswhite, Imperial Consigliere.

Posted by: LauraW at 01:00 PM | Comments (1)
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In Which Patterico Schools Bill O'Reilly
— DrewM

Remember when O'Reilly attributed a comment left at Hot Air to an actual "blog posting"? It was supposed to be some sort of proof of rightwing extremism or something.

Just for fun Patterico joined (at a cost of $4.95) the O'Reilly website and found some questionable, to say the least, content.

It seems the staff of O'Reilly's website didn't enjoy having those particular bits of dirty laundry aired and have suspended terminated Patterico's account.

Hypocrisy, thy name is O'Reilly!

Posted by: DrewM at 10:54 AM | Comments (4)
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Oil On the Rise: Here Comes Obama's Undoing
— Ace

Voters are extraordinarily sensitive to hikes in gas prices. Ask George Bush.

Add in the coming general inflation, rising interest rates, etc., and Obama's determination to raise taxes still further and his true-believer zealotry in refusing to expand conventional (i.e., "real") energy production, and you can see the thunderheads sweeping towards the White House.

Crude oil rose, capping its biggest monthly gain in a decade, as the dollar weakened against the euro, bolstering the appeal of commodities.

Oil climbed above $66 a barrel to a six-month high as the dollar declined beyond $1.41 against the euro for the first time this year, making raw materials such as oil and gold an attractive alternative investment. Prices also gained as U.S., and Asian indicators pointed to a global economic recovery.

“The devaluation of the dollar is leading to the revaluation of energy and commodities in general,” said John Kilduff, senior vice president of energy at MF Global in New York. “This is a monetary-based rally. The market is focused on the future and ignoring the fundamentals of the present day crude-oil supply and demand picture.”

Prognostication: Depending on when the bad economic news hits, Obama's approval ratings will drop precipitously, beginning in six months to a year. He'll drop from his ~55% rating to ~40% in just a couple of months.

People are giving him a chance, and they do, of course, want him to succeed. This isn't ideological but practical: They just don't want to suffer through years of economic stagnation and misery.

But they will.

They also don't want to think of themselves as not giving the first black president a fair chance. And especially they don't want others to think of them that way.

These changes can be lightning-quick and deadly-deep-- when there is a lot of "preference falsification" going on.

Kuran begins his book with an illustration of a man at his employer's dinner party. Though the man dislikes the homes décor and the meal served, the man feels compelled to offer false compliments. At the end of the evening, the man kindly says he enjoyed the evening, though he is really happy to be leaving. The fictional person is constrained from being honest by societal pressure and personal fears. Whenever people choose to lie about their true beliefs, Kuran calls that "preference falsification."

Situations such as the dinner party do occur often in people's lives. When someone at work begins to express certain political views that the listener disagrees with, the listener must decide whether to respond with the truth, or to simply take another course. The listener might simply ignore the issue, or the listener might even nod in agreement. But, how does someone make the decision of what course to take?

Kuran theorizes that people evaluate their choices based on three utilitarian factors. There is a reputational utility, an expressive utility, and an intrinsic utility. The reputational utility is the amount a certain answer will raise or lower the listener's standing in the community. Expressive utility is the value in letting others know how one truly feels. The intrinsic utility is the degree to which an option fulfills the individual's greatest good.

When people are faced with the decision of how to respond to someone they disagree with, they evaluate the different utilities. As an economist, Kuran has created various graphical functions to depict the value of each utility.

...

There are serious social effects of preference falsification also. Kuran uses communism as an example of a time when the majority believed differently than their public personas led others to believe. The result was that social change was stifled for decades. When a trigger finally made people feel comfortable in publicizing their beliefs, communism quickly fell. Affirmative action is another issue, according to Kuran, where public personas are often different than private. Anonymous polls routinely show that most Americans are against affirmative action. Yet, the practice persists because few people are willing to endure the horrendous social attacks from the minority who demands the programs. People like Jesse Jackson quickly label as racist those who oppose affirmative action. Recently, the new president of Harvard University found himself in a heated public relations battle. One of the chief complaints against the president was that upon entering office, he did not immediately release a statement praising affirmative action policies. Suddenly, even silence was enough to be branded racist. Kuran notes that the tremendous amount of resources spent defending against claims of racism leads many reasonable people to simply support affirmative action in public.

Because so many people are unwilling to take positions seen as unpopular, there is a role for activism. Kuran states that activists are people who are willing to go against the prevailing norms. Their expressive or intrinsic utilities are enough to allow them to endure social stigma, loss of jobs, and other attacks. Activists make people aware of alternative views. Sometimes, activists create an environment where being honest becomes safer. And activists can actually lead people to change their minds on issues, possibly leading to social change.

When the trigger eventually comes, people begin feeling comfortable about publicly expressing long-denied beliefs. Which in turn impels others to feel comfortable about doing likewise, which encourages still more of it, etc. Preference falsification is intensified and reinforced by social pressure; but so too is the revelation of true preferences, after the triggering event occurs.

For Obama, that trigger is going to be rising prices, rising taxes, rising interest rates, and almost certainly a second recessionary dip.

When that happens, there will be a "preference cascade" as the new socially-acceptable and socially-privileged sentiment is anti-Obama rather than pro-Obama.

This happened in America before, of course. For years, from the 40's through the 70's, liberalism advanced -- even under Richard Nixon -- because opposition to it was deemed "crazy," etc. There was a false consensus in favor of liberalism.

Until, of course, Jimmy Carter's incompetence triggered a massive preference cascade. And the heresies of the "crazy" Ronald Regan quickly became the new orthodoxy.

Falsified preferences are like a bloated soap-bubble. It's a fragile, unstable construction and takes very little to burst.

Hat tip to Instapundit for having introduced me to this idea, which I'm now a zealous believer in.

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Outrage: American Indian-Run Charter Schools Indoctrinate Students in Bizarre, Out-of-the-Mainstream Ideologies and Discredited Theories
— Ace

Boy, do they ever!

I think it's fair to guess that only minorities could possibly get away with these outre heresies.

Three no-frills charter schools in Oakland mock liberal orthodoxy, teach strictly to the test -- and produce some of the state's top scores.

By Mitchell Landsberg
May 31, 2009

Reporting from Oakland -- Not many schools in California recruit teachers with language like this: "We are looking for hard working people who believe in free market capitalism. . . . Multi-cultural specialists, ultra liberal zealots, and college-tainted oppression liberators need not apply."

That, it turns out, is just the beginning of the ways in which American Indian Public Charter and its two sibling schools spit in the eye of mainstream education. These small, no-frills, independent public schools in the hard-scrabble flats of Oakland sometimes seem like creations of television's "Colbert Report." They mock liberal orthodoxy with such zeal that it can seem like a parody.

School administrators take pride in their record of frequently firing teachers they consider to be underperforming. Unions are embraced with the same warmth accorded "self-esteem experts, panhandlers, drug dealers and those snapping turtles who refuse to put forth their best effort," to quote the school's website.

Students, almost all poor, wear uniforms and are subject to disciplinary procedures redolent of military school. One local school district official was horrified to learn that a girl was forced to clean the boys' restroom as punishment.

...

It would be easy to dismiss American Indian as one of the nuttier offshoots of the fast-growing charter school movement....

It would be easy for this reporter, considering he works at the LA Times.

But the schools command attention for one very simple reason: By standard measures, they are among the very best in California.

...

At American Indian, the largest ethnic group is Asian, followed by Latinos and African Americans. Some of the schools' critics contend that high-scoring Asian Americans are driving the high test scores, but blacks and Latinos do roughly as well -- in fact, better on some tests.

And wise Latinas' scores are off the charts, more often than not exceeding those of white males.

...

"What we're doing is so easy," said Ben Chavis, the man who created the school's success and personifies its ethos, especially in its more outrageous manifestations. (One example: He tends to call all non-white students, including African Americans, "darkies.") Although he retired in 2007, Chavis remains a presence at the school.

A Lumbee Indian who grew up poor in North Carolina and later struck it rich in real estate, Chavis took over American Indian in 2000, four years after it was founded with a Native American theme.

He began by firing most of the school's staff and shucking the Native American cultural content ("basket weaving," he scoffed). "You think the Jews and the Chinese are dumb enough to ask the public school to teach them their culture?" he asks...

The school just graduated its first class, and they're all going to college. Including one to MIT, and one to Cornell. (And I don't think it's the Keith Olbermann Farmer Fred Cornell.)

Liberal educators mocked the school. "It's easy to give kids a sense of self-esteem when they've actually accomplished something," one Bay Area basket-weaving teacher noted. "But what we do is far harder -- we convince kids to have self-esteem without having accomplished anything at all. Frankly, I'm pretty sure I deserve my third raise this year."

Thanks to gg.

Posted by: Ace at 10:10 AM | Comments (16)
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Now Prohibited: calling your congressman to bitch about the spendulus
— Purple Avenger

Well, this should tamp down anyone with a bad attitude that might have the nerve to call their congressman or senator about some aspect of the spendulus.

[previously]...barred registered lobbyists from having oral communications with government officials about specific Recovery Act projects or applications and instead required those communications to be in writing; and also required those written communications to be posted on the Internet. ...
...we will expand the restriction on oral communications to cover all persons, not just federally registered lobbyists. For the first time, we will reach contacts not only by registered lobbyists but also by unregistered ones, as well as anyone else exerting influence on the process. We concluded this was necessary under the unique circumstances of the stimulus program...
H/T Tapscott

Posted by: Purple Avenger at 09:28 AM | Comments (7)
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Shocking: Olbermann's a Liar
— Ace

It's hard for me to write, but Gawker does a great job here.

Cornell's Old MacDonald Chicken College must be so proud.

Olbermann... said that "the only actual evidence" that Muller's supposed waterboarding was not, in fact, a waterboarding was "the use of the word 'hoax' in an e-mail." Well, we'd say that's something, considering the e-mail in question was from Muller's publicist, Linda Shafran, who wrote outright that the event was indeed a hoax. Muller explained it away, as he did earlier today, by claiming that he would not have been permitted to do the stunt by his bosses if he let people know that he was actually planning on going through with it. He wasn't clear, but the implication was that Shafran wasn't in the loop—she thought it would be a bullshit stunt: "I didn't think it was a big deal, she didn't think it was a big deal. We were going to prove that it was nothing."

Shafran wrote the e-mail on the afternoon before the stunt, as part of a frantic attempt to find someone to conduct the waterboarding. Here's what she wrote:

It is going to have to look "real" but of course would be simulated with Mancow acting like he is drowning. It will be a hoax but have to look real.

No one disputes that the e-mail is genuine. Note that it contains other words than "hoax"—words like "look real" and "simulated." And—most importantly—"with Mancow acting like he is drowning."

Here's what Olbermann's paranoid rebuttals fail to explain: If Muller was planning on proving that waterboarding was no big deal, and if Shafran thought Muller was planning on proving that waterboarding was no big deal, and if Shafran also thought—wrongly—that it was going to be a hoax: Why would she write that Muller would be "acting like he is drowning"? Wouldn't he act like he wasn't drowning? Like waterboarding isn't a "big deal"? According to Muller's story, when Shafran wrote that e-mail, she was under the mistaken impression that Muller was going to fake a waterboarding to prove that it's no big deal. It makes no sense....

Even if Muller is telling the truth about Shafran being out of the loop, her e-mail makes fairly clear that Muller knew how his waterboarding was going to end before it started.

Read on. Olbermann received these leaked emails, with Mancow's publicist calling the whole thing a "hoax" in which Mancow would "act like" he's drowning, in advance of actually running the story. But ran it anyway.

Also, Mancow's story keeps shifting, and Olbermann doesn't seem to mind. First Mancow says the word "hoax" was used just to get police permission for the stunt; then he says the publicist herself really believed it was a hoax. Olbermann seems untroubled. Either story is fine with him.

Incidentally, having watched the tape, I now see that Mancow was not on a declining board, lungs raised above his mouth. His legs were elevated, but not his chest cavity, which is sort of the main thing.

It's a matter of simple gravity -- if one's lungs are positioned above one's nose and mouth, then water poured into one's mouth can't easily travel upwards, against gravity, to fill the lungs. Sure, small amounts can probably get forced up the windpipe by momentum or coughing, but only small amounts, and they'll come back up as soon as the windpipe opens again.

That's why waterboarding, done correctly, is merely simulated drowning. Water runs over the back of the throat and tickles the windpipe, thus hitting the body's DROWNING panic button, but you can't actually drown because water flows down, not up.

Mancow, on the other hand, had his lungs at the same level as his mouth. The momentum of the huge amount of water poured in -- far more than the drizzle of water that real waterboarding utilizes -- would in fact be enough to carry it down the windpipe and into the lungs. Something like a cup or more of water was being forced into his mouth every second, which is plenty enough pressure to force water down the windpipe and into the lungs.

So whether he planned this from the get-go as a hoax -- and it does actually appear it was a hoax from the get-go -- it was not waterboarding at all, but actual drowning.

As I said, Mancow said it felt like he was drowning because he was, in fact, drowning.

It may be that the moron intended to pretend to drown from the start, but, due to the fact he was using a guy who had no idea how to waterboard, actually did wind up drowning a bit.

Note Christopher Hitchens not only endured this for a while, but after it was over, said "Let's do it some more." (As Little Miss Atilla has noted, it's hard to credit something as being "torture" when not only is it voluntarily undertaken, but the alleged torture victim then demands seconds.)

Mancow lasted for three seconds or so. This can be attributed to the facts that 1) He's a sissy; 2) he was nearly drowned as a child; 3) he seemed to plan on pretending to drown and stopping it quickly from the beginning; and 4) the idiot was actually drowning, unlike Hitchens, who just underwent the uncomfortable feeling of having his drowning-button tickled.

No matter which way you slice it Keith Olbermann is a shabby liar and unhinged partisan carnival-barker who puts on stories without checking even when he's warned in advance that the story is a hoax.

And then he rebuts these proofs and these facts with nothing but sneering self-righteousness.

Oh: Keith Olbermann now says that while he knew of the publicist's emails deeming the whole thing a "hoax," he talked to Mancow and deemed his responses satisfactory to convince him it was real.

Oh really? Note that Olbermann didn't ask Mancow about the hoax emails on the air and let the audience in on that, or let it judge Mancow's response to see if they too were as easily persuaded by the buffoonish cow-insemination major Olbermann. He did not merely fail to disclose this fact, he actively concealed it from the world, and only now -- when exposed as a liar -- does he tell us about all the serious fact-checking he did behind the world's back to "confirm" the stunt as genuine.

Also note that, as Ann Coulter says, more reporters have now been waterboarded than terrorists. So it is apparently not particularly difficult to get a trained guy to waterboard you... safely, and properly. Any former SEAL instructor would know how to do it, as they do it to our own guys in SERE training.

So why did he just send out emails (or whatever) to get a listener to come in and read Wikipedia and stage a fake waterboarding? It would have been easier to just get a real guy.

I don't know the answer to that question. Though the slapdash nature of this does tend to suggest it was a hoax from the get-go. Who cares about conducting a proper experiment when you've decided on the conclusions in advance?


Posted by: Ace at 09:17 AM | Comments (7)
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Right Wing Nut Job Ted Rall: Obama Should Resign
— DrewM

What's that you say? Rall isn't a rightwinger but a despicable piece of shit lefty? Whatever. It's still fun.

We expected broken promises. But the gap between the soaring expectations that accompanied Barack Obama’s inauguration and his wretched performance is the broadest such chasm in recent historical memory. This guy makes Bill Clinton look like a paragon of integrity and follow-through.

From health care to torture to the economy to war, Obama has reneged on pledges real and implied. So timid and so owned is he that he trembles in fear of offending, of all things, the government of Turkey. Obama has officially reneged on his campaign promise to acknowledge the Armenian genocide. When a president doesn’t have the nerve to annoy the Turks, why does he bother to show up for work in the morning?

Obama is useless. Worse than that, he’s dangerous. Which is why, if he has any patriotism left after the thousands of meetings he has sat through with corporate contributors, blood-sucking lobbyists and corrupt politicians, he ought to step down now — before he drags us further into the abyss.

Is this important? Of course not.

Is it irresistible as a heaping helping of Schadenfreude? Yes, yes it is.

As for lefties criticizing Obama from the left, sorry, you saddled us with this moron so you don't get to run away from him.

And no, the fact that Obama is being hit from the right and left does not prove he's a centrist. All Rall's little rant proves is that his absolutely bonkers, not that we didn't already know that.

(via The Corner)

Posted by: DrewM at 07:32 AM | Comments (3)
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Weekend News Roundup -- If you are reading this today, you should consider getting a life. [krakatoa]
— Open Blog

What does that say about me?

Shaddup, that's what!

President Obama shocks the world and continues yet another Bush-era policy. Let the Kossack wailing begin -- this one is over wiretaps:

The filing said President Barack Obama has authorized access to classified information on a "need-to-know" basis and argued that the government "cannot be sanctioned for its determination that plaintiffs do not have a need to know classified information."

---

US offers condolences to Iranian victims of terrorist attacks on Thursday... I presume Bill Ayers dissents from his Protege's administration on this, as these sort of consciousness-raising activities are his very bread & butter.

---

Following up in that vein President Obama is to make a speech at the University of Cairo that aims to make Muslims love us.

"The speech will outline his personal commitment to engagement, based upon mutual interests and mutual respect," White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said.

The president's foreign policy advisor Mark Lippert says it will touch on "difficult issues."

"He doesn't hesitate to take on the tough issues in his speech, just harkening back to his Senate career when he delivered a very, very powerful message on corruption in Kenya."

Ah yes, that groundbreaking, world-shaking Kenya speech -- I remember it well. What, you neither? I looked up a report on it; It was a diplomatic speech, and I think we are all coming to the realization that the d-word is not an adjective so much as a topic for this president. It also dawns on me that Kenya may have done the influencing vis-a-vis corruption:

The senator also said that ethnic-based tribal politics in Kenya had to stop. Such politics was rooted in the bankrupt idea that the goal of politics or business is to funnel as much of the pie as possible to one's family, tribe, or circle with little regard for the public good, he said.

Mr Obama said that this stifles innovation and fractures the fabric of the society. Instead of opening businesses and engaging in commerce, people come to rely on patronage and payback as a means of advancing. Instead of unifying the country to move forward on solving problems, it divides neighbours, he added.

Or maybe those were some types of corruption that Obama is intimately familiar [cough]Chicago[cough] with.

Bah! I have it on good authority, he is incorruptible.

He is, as always, the Great and Powerful OzBama!

Posted by: Open Blog at 07:20 AM | Comments (5)
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Obama: Efforts to Repeat Twist Sotomayer's Words Will Fail
— Dave in Texas

In an accountable world, there's a pretty significant difference between management and leadership.

This is management.

Obama said he expects a continuation of what he said has already occurred in the few days since he chose Circuit Court Judge Sonia Sotomayor to replace David Souter on the Court -- "pulling a few comments out of context to paint a distorted picture."

"But I am confident that these efforts will fail; because Judge Sotomayor's seventeen-year record on the bench, hundreds of judicial decisions that every American can read for him or herself, speak far louder than any attack; her record makes clear that she is fair, unbiased, and dedicated to the rule of law," he said.

In related news, debt is opportunity and whimsey is strategery.

Posted by: Dave in Texas at 06:50 AM | Comments (4)
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May 29, 2009

Overnight open thread – (genghis)
— Open Blog

Notice: Posted by permission of AceCorp LLC. Please e-mail overnight open thread tips to xgenghisx@gmail.com. Otherwise send tips to Ace.

Posted by: Open Blog at 03:29 PM | Comments (8)
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Goode Family Does Weak Ratings
— Ace

Not awful, but neither good enough to suggest it will be on for long.

I wasn't going to review this, as my review is pretty negative, and I didn't want to say bad things about Mike Judge or a conservative-friendly show. But as the show already seems on life support...

Bear in mind, the first episode of Seinfeld (the first four episodes really) were horrible. The show only became non-horrible in the second season, and only became good in the third.

Most shows start out rather badly.

Caveats aside:

more...

Posted by: Ace at 03:09 PM | Comments (4)
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Obama Blocks Sale of Replacement Apaches to Israel; Raises Obstacles for Purchases of F-35's, Too
— Ace

"Stalwart allies," Obama says.

Okay.

Thanks to Kae Gregory.


Posted by: Ace at 01:23 PM | Comments (6)
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