September 30, 2009

Overnight Open Thread (Mætenloch)
— Open Blog

Good evening and welcome all morons, moronettes, and sub-moronettes!

Item #1: Carla Bruni Can Sing
Not only is Carla Bruni the hottest First Lady in the world, but she's an heiress, a former model, and a quite good singer.

Okay I'm finding myself really coming to like the French first couple which goes against everything I believe in. So maybe it is time for that brain MRI. more...

Posted by: Open Blog at 06:59 PM | Comments (4)
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Aging Hippie Douchebag: Let Republicans Die Off to Pay for "Health Care Reform"
— Dave in Texas

Let's just cut em out of our new health care system.

Home-spun humor. Hah hahah ... the wit.

one starts to wonder if the country wouldn't be better off without them and if Republicans should be cut out of the health-care system entirely and simply provided with aspirin and hand sanitizer. Thirty-two percent of the population identifies with the GOP, and if we cut off health care to them, we could probably pay off the deficit in short order.

Keillor ends his old fart bitch rant with something about let the younger people take charge and shut up that's why.

He really only means the old men who happen to think this health care crap is just that, crap. Not the old men who are working the procedural system to get it passed as an amendment to a finance bill.

But then you could always count on Garrison for lazy expression and meaningless cultural observation. It's been his bread and butter for 40 years.

Posted by: Dave in Texas at 06:37 PM | Comments (22)
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DHS Just Cut a Check to ACORN for Just Shy of $1 Million
— Ace

You know, ACORN, on the front lines of America's defense against Salvadoran sex-slavers, and doing a damn fine job of it too.

Posted by: Ace at 05:45 PM | Comments (18)
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Kirstie Alley Goes Off on Polanski, EOnline
— Ace

Why E!Online? Because the "little snippy bitch" who posted the tweet about RAPE IS RAPE chose the most unflattering picture of her to run against a good picture of the aging satyr Polanski. And, actually, as soon as I saw the picture, that was my reaction too: Could they editorialize a bit more?

Anyway, she went off in the comments.

Re: the writer, she speaks the truth:

"Mr. Josh is just another little snippy bitch who wouldn't talk against RP because he might lose his snippy bitch job..lol."

People in Hollywood and all affiliated parasitic industries are insecure -- for good reason. They really could lose everything for spurning the wrong person and not sucking up to the right person. Part of this grim spectacle is clueless artists who really do think that they have some artist's right of primae noctis*, but most of it is a lot of very insecure people, just barely able keeping a tenuous toehold on celebrity as it is, afraid to go against the ex cathedra declarations of the purported Hollywood elite.

Because, really, most writers and actors and directors and art designers really are more or less interchangable with at least 20 other similar substitutes, so anyone who defies The Collective is taking a chance.

There's a lot of that going on here. Which makes these statements by Luc Besson and Kirstie Alley critical, because they defy the morally-retarded pap taken as the official Media Party line and invite others to say "Enough with this bullshit. He's a rapist."

let's see..43 year old Director Roman Polanski put his ***** in a 13 year old girls ****** and then her ANUS after he gave her drugs and alcohol, while she was telling him to STOP..hmmm that's a tough one.."as (opposed to rape).." Have we really gotten so STUPID and TWISTED that we care what the CRIMINAL says he was doing? and do we REALLY think a 45 day stay in jail makes up for RAPING a child? Polanski was afraid he wouldn't get a FAIR TRIAL? hmmm ISN'T THAT WHAT ALL CRIMINALS SAY? I'm going to go bang my head on the floor..makes more sense than defending a RAPIST."

Garbled, but you get the gist.

Polanski was 44 and he spent 42 days in jail, by the way. Minor corrections.

Really, really bad picture of her offered up by this "little snippy bitch."

* Corrected: Obviously I didn't know the word they were using in Braveheart. Jack Bauer's Evil Brother tells me it's ius primae noctis.

Posted by: Ace at 04:52 PM | Comments (19)
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Michelle Obama: I Know Many Will Say It Is a Sacrifice for Me and My Friend Oprah to Fly to Europe First Class and Stay in Four-Star Hotels, But I'm Willing to Do That for the Children of Chicago
— Ace

No, really.

In her speech in Copenhagen today, First Lady Michelle Obama said her trip to Denmark, along with the travel of her “dear friend” and “chit-chat buddy” Oprah Winfrey, as well as tomorrow’s visit by President Obama, is a “sacrifice” on behalf of the children of Chicago and the United States. “As much of a sacrifice as people say this is for me or Oprah or the president to come for these few days,” the first lady told a crowd of people involved in the Chicago project, “so many of you in this room have been working for years to bring this bid home.”

Sacrifice.

I've never been proud of my country until now.

Copenhagen. Now, true, Copenhagen isn't one of the first ten European cities you think of when you think of vacation paradise. Still -- I'm pretty sure it's not that bad, especially not in early fall. It is, you know, a minor capital, and a major city in an advanced wealthy western nation.

I'm pretty sure they wear shoes there, and outbreaks of cholera are mostly contained.

And they have some copper statue of a mermaid or somethin'. With breasts. So, right there -- nice statue. Breasts. Worth the trip.

What sacrifices will the Divine Miss M sacrifice next? Hobnobbing with socially-conscious rock and roll icons? Jaunting off to Hollywood to fund-raise from beautiful and charismatic celebrities? Appearing as a goodwill ambassador at the Venice Film Festival?

What more do you demand of this woman? She's doing all she can. Who warms The Sun?

This sounds an awful lot like the hellish exile Roman Polanski spent in Paris.

Thanks to Slublog.

Credit: "Who warms the Sun?" comes from Just Shoot Me. Nina Van Horne, a similarly cluelessly entitled and self-centered woman, exclaims this in exasperation after doing a similarly minor task for someone (but mostly for herself).

In case you don't get it -- she's the Sun, providing warmth and light for us all without complaint. She just wants to know when, o when, anyone will ever warm her, she who makes the flowers bloom and the corn rise tall.

Posted by: Ace at 03:48 PM | Comments (20)
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Andrew Young, John Edwards' "Butt Boy"
— Ace

Not literally, but he was Edwards' most diligent and dedicated sycophant, at least according to this profile.

This falls into the category of "not important from a news perspective but kinda interesting and weird from a human perspective."

Worth reading in full. A deeply weird portrait, a cross between Dennis Finch from Just Shoot Me and the sycophantic psychopath Will Patton played in No Way Out.

And John and Elizabeth Edwards come off no better.

Young sometimes described himself as Edwards’s “special assistant” and dreamed of serving in an Edwards White House. Other aides, with a combination of disgust — and, perhaps, a bit of envy — referred to him as Edwards’s “personal servant,” or worse, Edwards’s “butt boy.” The relationship was so intense, at least on Young’s side, that it generated friction between him and Elizabeth Edwards....

“John was his idol — his hero — and probably who he considered his best friend and his mentor,” said Tim Toben, a former John Edwards supporter and friend of Young’s....


Young’s friends describe him simply as a “totally devoted” believer who was “taken advantage of,” in the words of one former staffer. Those close to both Young and Edwards describe the staffer’s passion in intensely emotional terms. Starting soon after Edwards was elected to the Senate in 1998, staffers began describing Young as intensely “jealous” of others who were close to the senator.
“He believed that Edwards was the next Kennedy,” said a person who was close to Young. “It’s not enough to say that he idolized the guy — there’s something deeper and weirder than that.”

...

Elizabeth Edwards, meanwhile, had been leaving messages on Young’s and Young’s wife’s voice mail, two sources say Young told them, demanding that he reassert his paternity to clear the cloud over her husband. The Youngs returned to Chapel Hill, and they heard that Elizabeth Edwards had been spreading the rumor that, among other things, Young had stolen her late son Wade’s baseball card collection, which he denied. The (New York) Daily News reported that she had been attacking Young’s character in pseudonymous blog comments.

...

Young’s friends say he decided to write a book only after he decided that the Edwards would never set the record straight and after he read Elizabeth Edwards’s description of him as a “pathetic,” grasping male mirror image of Hunter.

“They look at our lives, which from the outside, in particular, are pictures of joy and plenty, and they want it for themselves,” she wrote of Hunter and Young in “Resilience.”

...

And Young, with all the fury of a spurned lover, may be holding out yet another threat to his old idol, if it comes to that: an explicit videotape, two people who have seen it said, of Edwards and Hunter together.

“It’s his hole card,” said the source.

I don't buy the sex-tape crap, but assuming it's legit: Enjoy thinking about how Andrew Young came to have it. As in -- cameraman? John Edwards wouldn't be content with the crap angle provided by a stationary camera, after all.

Stuff I cut out: Elizabeth Edwards suspected, rightly, that Young had helped facilitate her husband's affair, and thus the constant disparagements. But at the same time she's lobbying this guy to keep claiming, absurdly, to be the father of the kid. While she slams him publicly. Not smart, Elizabeth.

Also cut out: Young did everything for Edwards -- well, lots of menial type stuff -- and Edwards kept denying him anything like the serious job he wanted.

It's this kind of stuff that really, really makes me want nothing at all to do with this bizarre world of politics.

Thanks to Larry.

Oh, By The Way, Allah? This is a Beta Male.

Posted by: Ace at 02:50 PM | Comments (12)
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Penske to GM: No Deal on Saturn
— Dave in Texas

Couldn't get Renault-Nissan on board.

Deal makes zero sense to me, why would Nissan dilute in the U.S.?

General Motors said today it would shut down Saturn after respected Detroit businessman Roger Penske shocked GM and 350 Saturn dealers by saying that his plans to buy the storied brand had fallen apart.

The announcement came a day before GM and its dealers expected the deal to be finalized. The failure could cost as many as 13,000 jobs at dealerships nationwide and GM.

The market for small fuel-efficient cars is only so large.

Until Obama gets done with it I mean.

Posted by: Dave in Texas at 02:01 PM | Comments (11)
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DiY: Wise-Asses Show Up Ferrell & Co.
— Ace

Easily funnier than the original, which begs the question, What good are you then?*

Via Allah, with fresh news on the Adam McKay Challenge.


* What is this from? I have a recollection of a snotty British-accented dude calling this out as a taunt to the hero, after the hero, I think, has either said he can't or won't fight (or, um, use his powers -- that kind of a movie I think).

I see the snotty British accented dude on the back of motorcycle or truck as he says the exit line.

Anyone?

Oh, Nevermind: Found it, Dorian Gray to Dr. Jekyll in the lame League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. In the back of Nemo's open-top sedan as he says it.


Posted by: Ace at 01:14 PM | Comments (9)
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Stupid Illiterate Who Faked a Pregnancy Now Number One on Barnes and Nobe, Amazon
Update: "Unprecedented"

— Ace

Not really surprising, really. It's never been doubted that Palin had a lot of supporters, most of whom were passionate supporters. (Unlike, say, Tom Ridge, who may have supporters, but they tend to be pretty meh on him.)

So this isn't really vindication or the like, but it's nice that the usual idiots must be annoyed. Even though they should have seen this coming, they hate her so much it scrambles their brains.


"Unprecedented:" At the top of the charts 48 days out from actual release, apparently the only non-fiction book to accomplish such a feat.

So -- big or Harry Potter big?


Number One at Amazon, Too: To save space, I was going to claim she was number one at Amazon, even though she wasn't when I posted, because I knew it was a matter of time.

Well, that time is upon us.


Posted by: Ace at 12:57 PM | Comments (43)
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And now a pretend message from Kanye West
— Jack M.

So I'm reading all the posts about Roman "If there is grass on the field, play ball" Polanski's legal travails today, and I'm struck by two thoughts. Which is one more than normal for me, and two more than Honest Cloud and Palin Steele normally have. Put together.

My two thoughts are:

1) How long until Polanski plays the Manson card and blames his screwy pre-occupation with 13 year girls on the murder of his pregnant wife, Sharon Tate, and their unborn child? You know that Oprah would totally run with this, and I bet some Hollywood jurors (and maybe even noted Washington Post writers like Anne Applebaum) would buy it.

2) What would Kanye West think about this situation? Honestly, isn't this something you always wonder about? If not it's obvious that you, like George Bush, hate black people.

Well, I don't know the answer to the first question. But I have a pretty good idea about what Kanye would say if anyone bothered to ask him. Kanye's possible answer after the jump. more...

Posted by: Jack M. at 11:52 AM | Comments (9)
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All Taxes Are, Ultimately, For Your Benefit: "Studies Show" Small Tax on Beer Will Reduce Teenage Rape, Gonorrhea
— Ace

Such a small tax, too! Just three cents a bottle.

Isn't three cents a bottle a fair price to pay for reduced rape? And the clap?

You don't... support rape and gonorrhea, do you?

Did I mention that "studies show"?

Studies.

Show.

Which part of that didn't you understand, the "studies," the "show," or the implied "you frigging retard"?

Listen to me, you Jesus-crack-addicted inbred sub-cretins: Your own religion tells you that man is irredeemably sinful, therefore all actions he takes cannot help but be tainted by sin.

Therefore -- if you mouth-breathing moonshine-and-meth mountain men are still following this science -- any tax which makes it more expensive to conduct any sort of human activity whatsoever has the inevitable and salutary effect of reducing the gross sin in the world, for people sin less when doing nothing at all.

You morons are into God 'n morality and stuff. You should dig this argument, assuming you understand it, which I don't assume, actually. Go ask the bus-driver taking you to your assisted living home to explain it to you using sock-puppets and crude dioramas improvised out of Budweiser 24-pack cartons.

True, the "science" here is all flawed 'n stuff, but so what. The argument is sound. Taxing you violent, rape-obsessed racists, you less-literary rejects from Clockwork Orange, into doing nothing at all but sitting at home watching Two and Half Men and occasionally farting on your children cannot help but make America a safer, more livable place, where only the elegantly wealthy can afford to actually do anything outside the home at night.

Go and sin no more, peasants. And accept your sin taxes, and your gasoline taxes, and your electricity taxes, and your smoking bans, and your gun bans, and all the rest of it, because we know what's best for you corncob-smokin' banjo-strokin' cousin-pokin' Dwight Yoakem inbred hillbilly mutant retards.

PS: Free Roman, but I wouldn't expect you bitter clingers to understand that, either. That's advanced learning. Let's just try to get it through your heads that You belong to us, like well-cared for children first, and then work on the more difficult stuff when you're ready for it.

Posted by: Ace at 11:48 AM | Comments (7)
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Iranian Foreign Minister Drops By Washington D.C.
— DrewM

Ahmadinejad's man is just in town for a little chat with his friends at the Pakistani Embassy.

Iran's foreign minister made a rare visit to the U.S. capital Wednesday on a visa granted with unusual speed by the State Department one day before the start of nuclear talks in Geneva.

State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley played down the significance of the U.S. decision to permit the visit by Manouchehr Mottaki, even though it marked the first time in years that a senior Iranian official has visited Washington.

"I wouldn't read too much into this," Crowley said.

Iran and the U.S. have not had formal diplomatic relations since 1980.

Crowley said Mottaki will not be meeting any U.S. officials or any Americans representing the U.S. government.

...On Tuesday, Iran allowed Swiss diplomats, representing U.S. interests in Iran, to visit three Americans who have been detained in Tehran since they were arrested for illegal entry in late July. The State Department welcomed the Iranian gesture. Crowley on Wednesday declined to say what the Swiss diplomats learned about the condition of the three Americans, who have had no contact with their families in the U.S.

It's swell that the US welcomes the "Iranian gesture". Others may look upon a 3 month delay in meeting it's legal obligations a grounds for getting tough with a county but not our man Barack. No sir, he'll take the back of your hand and thank you for it. So long as you represent a thug regime.

Also on the list for visits to the US are officials from the repressive military regime in Burma!

Not on the list? Honduran officials representing the interim government fighting for the rule of law or the Dali Lama.

Here kitty, kitty, kitty.

Posted by: DrewM at 11:42 AM | Comments (5)
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Such a Cheap Post I Am Almost (But Not Quite) Ashamed
— Ace

500x_health2093009.jpg

I know what you're thinking: They're too fashionably dressed to be real grassroots protesters.

I will leave the cheaper stuff -- about the what cream-filled treats are really victimizing them -- to you. Because I'm above that. But mostly just because I can't think of a gag that isn't see-it-coming-over-the-horizon-100-miles-away obvious.

What is interesting is that they seem to be protesting their own health care insurance -- meaning they have it. But it's still rotten.

Which leads to an obvious question, but I'm still trying to think of a gag that doesn't involve Hostess.

Thanks to Dave @ Garfield Ridge, swiped from Jezebel.

Posted by: Ace at 10:50 AM | Comments (7)
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Backlash/Whiplash? Luc Besson Refuses to Sign Petition
— Ace

Stolen from Hot Air's Headlines, Luc Besson, who, being a French director and all, is practically obligated to sign the petition, nevertheless says Non:

The French director Luc Besson refused to sign the petition calling for Polanski's release.

He said: "I have a lot of affection for him, he is a man that I like very much but nobody should be above the law. I don't know the details of this case, but I think that when you don't show up for trial, you are taking a risk."

In case you weren't certain (as I wasn't), Besson writes/produces/directs a lot of action-type movies, like Banlieu 13 (District 13) and The Transporter and Taken. (Note I'm scrambling his credits; some he produced, some wrote, etc.) Fifth Element, too, a movie I hate but which is popular for reasons I have never understood.

More Links: It's happened before: Luminaries begged for Jack Abbott to be spared jail for murder. Why? Because, supposedly, he had literary talent.

Normal Mailer was admirably -- or disgustingly, or both -- candid about his reasoning:

During a tumultuous press conference outside the courtroom, Mailer told reporters, I am willing to gamble with certain elements in society to save this man’s talent!

The "elements" he was willing to "gamble with" included the murdered man, of course, who had no literary talent to speak of, and therefore could be murdered with impunity -- not even really a human being, when you think about it.

All this is too much even for the New York Times:

In Europe, the prevailing mood — at least among those with access to the news media — seemed to be that Mr. Polanski has already “atoned for the sins of his young years,” as Jacek Bromski, the chief of the Polish Filmmakers Association, put it.

We disagree strongly, and we were glad to see other prominent Europeans beginning to point out that this case has nothing to do with Mr. Polanski’s work or his age. It is about an adult preying on a child. Mr. Polanski pleaded guilty to that crime and must account for it.

Let me explain something to the NYT which anyone following this case knows. They think it's strange that Polanski would be arrested now.

It's not strange at all. Polanski's lawyers sought for his case to be dropped last year (or the year before), citing, among other things, their assertion that LA prosecutors weren't even attempting to arrest Polanski. Their theory being -- and this isn't off-the-wall -- that if there is no genuine prosecution being sought, the state is obligated to drop the pretense of it and acknowledge that.

Well, that seems to have lit a fire under prosecutors who don't want this semi-defense being employed, so they renewed their efforts to get a warrant on Polanski.

Polanski had previously been smarter about visiting countries where he wasn't protected. And the LA prosecutors had, in fact, sought warrants where he was expected to show up -- but Polanski seems to have been tipped to that and wound up not attending. This time, the warrant was delivered, and Polanski did finally show up.

So, NYT: Mystery solved. You can stop with your passive-aggressive pussyfooting "On the other hand" sop to the Hollywood elite now.

By The Way: Thank God for small mercies &c., but the feminist blogger left is not joining the fashionable crusade to free Roman.

I didn't think they would, really, but there's always that chance. When the left's cultural betters give them their marching orders, they tend to snap to.

But, for feminists, even fake-rapes like the Crystal Mangum fake-rape is a very big deal worthy of outrage and continued insistence that Something must have happened, so really they could not easily reverse field and claim that a genuine rape was a mulligan.

So, really, I guess this is merely congratulating people for not being monsters, but in the current climate, I guess congratulations are still in order.


Posted by: Ace at 09:43 AM | Comments (7)
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Economy Doesn't Contract As Much as Expected; Still, For the Year, A Record Decline
— Ace

Recession really winding down? 0.7% contraction may be better than the previously-estimated 1.0% contraction, but it still seems pretty bad.

On a year-on-year basis, growth is down a record 3.8% in the second quarter.

In another article, an analyst claims...

"The downturn appears to have concluded this summer, and the economy is on track to grow for the first time in more than year in the third quarter. The initial phase of growth is being driven by rapid recoveries in housing and manufacturing, diminishing drags from equipment spending and nonresidential construction, and government support."

I don't get the claim that the downturn has "concluded" when the economy is still contracting and jobs are still being shed -- a quarter of a million this last time.

Doesn't a recovery still include the notion of actual recovery, and not merely "contracting and shedding jobs on a slower basis"?

Ah, well. Different rules for Captain Wonderful.

Please excuse the virulent racism contained, in "code-words," in this posting.

Posted by: Ace at 09:32 AM | Comments (9)
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Democrats Block ID Requirement for Obamacare UPDATE: Also Reject Anti-Abortion Provision
— Gabriel Malor

Democrats on Senate Finance unanimously blocked an amendment to the Baucus bill which would require applicants for the healthcare exchanges or healthcare subsidies show a photo ID before receiving benefits.

The President and Democrats have claimed that illegal immigrants will not be eligible for Obamacare, but every time Republicans have sought to introduce language which would actually require applicants to prove their identity and lawful status the Democrats have voted it down.

Without that requirement, the bill "remains dearly lacking when it comes to identification," Grassley said. "Frankly, I'm very perplexed as to why anyone would oppose this amendment," he said.

But Democratic Sen. Jeff Bingaman, who represents the border state of New Mexico, said that the type of fraud Grassley said he wants to prevent is highly uncommon. "The way I see the amendment, it's a solution without a problem," Bingaman said.

"Highly uncommon." How would he know?

Related: When you have a second, there's an excellent op-ed over at the WSJ entitled "Why Obama Bombed on Health Care."

UPDATE [DrewM.]: The committee also rejected an amendment sponsored by Orin Hatch that would have prevented money provided via tax credits to be used for plans that included abortion services.

No money for abortion or illegal aliens? How about a bridge in Brooklyn, does Obama have any of those for sale?

Posted by: Gabriel Malor at 08:56 AM | Comments (7)
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Anne Applebaum Plays (Get This) the Feminism Card
— Ace

Caught agitating for Roman Polanski's release without disclosing she's married to a Polish diplomat also agitating for his release, Applebaum decides that outrage is the best defense:

The implication, in any case, that I am a spokesman for my husband -- while not quite as offensive as the implication that my daughter should be raped -- is offensive nevertheless.

Offensive? This is Conflict of Interest 101. A Conflict of Interest charge does not, in fact, charge you are selling out to someone else. It states, rather, that you have, um, a conflict of interest, which is usually resolvable (for pundits at least) by simply disclosing the conflict.

Applebaum didn't do that -- and here lays down what is clearly the Feminist License card. How dare you accuse me of being a spokesman for my husband! I am a woman! I think for myself!

Well... sure. But the thing is, if a male senator just happens to have a wife who's a lobbyist for green energy, we accuse him of having a conflict of interest, too. And he is not permitted to get all offended and say "How dare you accuse me of letting a woman do my thinking for me!"

How Applebaum imagines that simply by virtue of her sex she is entitled to get offended at a standard (and quite strong) charge of conflict of interest escapes me.

In fairness, she offers another defense -- basically, "People who read me know all about this conflict (at which I bristle in offense at the mention of) and so I didn't think it necessary to mention."

1, she's wrong. She may have mentioned her husband in passing a week before, but her husband was of particular and direct importance in her Polanski post, and that conflict should have been disclosed. I say this even knowing I am exposed as an anti-woman hater for suggesting that a woman can ever have a conflict involving a man.

2, she points out that Patterico himself didn't mention his conflict -- he's an LA Prosecutor -- in his post, except in an update. Well, she's kinda right -- same rule, I guess -- except a) he did mention it when he thought of it, and b) Patterico is really, really, really known by anyone who's ever read him to be an LA prosecutor. This is not some passing reference like Applebaum casually mentioning her husband once in a while. Patterico is known, basically, as the "LA Prosecutor Blogger." In his case, it really is an example of "Well of course you know this, I say this twice a week."

Her defense has evolved, by the way, into the claim that because (she says) the victim called her mom to get permission to be photographed in the jacuzzi, this is somehow proof it wasn't rape. Or something.

Um...

1. A parent's letter of permission, even if secured, cannot change the law that you cannot rape 13 year old girls. In the Michael Jackson pedophile case, there was much talk that the parents "must have known" and perhaps facilitated the abuse. Okay, that is a possibility. That is not a defense against child rape; rather, that is a new charge of pandering and child endangerment against the parents. A parent cannot agree on behalf of a child to rape -- not with any legal effect. Or else the child-sex industry in America would be legal and flourishing, for any number of diseased parents would gladly sign over their children into prostitution.

2. The girl was there, she thought, for a modeling shoot. If the mother agreed that in a modeling shoot to let a professional lensman who offers the opinion that a jacuzzi-shot would be helpful -- well, one can object that the mother shouldn't have said yes, but I am damn sure she wasn't actually giving the secret wink-wink-nudge-nudge to go ahead and rape her daughter.

Assume Appelbaum is right: Polanski suggested the jacuzzi, the daughter called the mom to say "Is that okay?" As far as the mom knew, Polanski was behaving within the confines of the law -- acting perfectly lawfully -- because he was diligently securing new permission from the mother to take a shot that wasn't already permitted by the signed waivers. This would tend, at least in many, to give the reassurance that He's following all the rules to the letter so I guess he's "safe."

Either way I don't get how "Yes you may photograph my daughter, in a modeling shoot for a fashion magazine, in the jacuzzi" translates to "Go ahead and have sex with her, and if you're in the mood for a little ass-play, feel free to indulge that impulse as well."

The fact that Applebaum is even suggesting such stupidity ought to be a red light flashing in her mind that maybe she really does have a conflict of interest, and maybe more than just a conflict, too. As offensive as that suggestion might be.

She's also offended that some think that her defense of Polanski means she thinks it's okay to rape 13-year-olds. Where people could get that idea I can hardly even imagine.

Maybe it has something to do with their constant implication that This is no big deal.

One more thing. Applebaum claims:

However, I will also note that at the time I wrote the blog item, I had no idea that the Polish government would or could lobby for Polanski's release...

No idea? Really? The Poles and the French have long protected Polanski but you had "no idea" they would lobby for his release? None? Not even an inkling of a glimmer of a spark?

I'm going to do Applebaum a favor and save her the time and go ahead and just mark this "A BIG FAT LIE" on her behalf. Just so she doesn't have to get out the red pen herself.

Also in Ed's link: The French peasants are revolting.

Well, they've always been revolting. Now they'e rebelling:

fter two days of widespread expressions of support for jailed filmmaker Roman Polanski, from European political leaders as well as leading cultural figures there and in the United States, the mood was shifting among French politicians Tuesday about whether the government should have rushed to rally around the Oscar-winning director.

...

The mood was even more hostile in blogs and e-mails to newspapers and news magazines. Of the 30,000 participants in an online poll by the French daily Le Figaro, more than 70 percent said Mr. Polanski, 76, should face justice. And in the magazine Le Point, more than 400 letter writers were almost universal in their disdain for Mr. Polanski.

That contempt was not only directed at Mr. Polanski, but at the French class of celebrities — nicknamed Les People — who are part of Mr. Polanski’s rarefied Parisian world. Letter writers to Le Point scorned Les People as the “crypto-intelligentsia of our country” who deliver “eloquent phrases that defy common sense.”

Credit the democratic power of the internet for that, which allows, finally, a public to talk back to its insular and insulated political class. A French schoolteacher blogged about the European Union Treaty and riled up public outrage about it -- outrage that was actually long present, but which no one had the power to express, as the only people allowed to speak publicly were of course part of the ruling class and shared all its assumptions.

Posted by: Ace at 08:49 AM | Comments (9)
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Kathleen Parker: Hey, This Obama Fellow Isn't All That Impressive
— DrewM

Et tu Kathleen?

In keeping with his campaign promise to talk to America's enemies without precondition, Barack Obama plans to turn his charms on Burma's military junta. Slowly, we're beginning to understand what hope and change were all about. Translation: Sure hope this change works.

Sorry, I have to interrupt here to ask a quick question...Who is this "we" you speak of Mrs. Parker?

Many of us actually spent the last campaign warning about Obama's lack of experience and dangerous naïveté.

Others spent the last campaign in the dreamy spell of Mr. Wonderful and warning about Sarah Palin's dangerous diction or something.

Anyway...

It may be too soon to pass judgment on Obama's new foreign policy strategy, but early returns on his gamble that talking is the best cure are less than reassuring. Each time Obama extends a hand to one of the world's anti-American despots, he is rewarded with an insult (Venezuela's Hugo Chavez) or, perhaps, a missile display (North Korea and Iran)

One may view these episodes as diminishing America's status or as a tolerable annoyance -- sort of the way Dobermans view toy poodles. At some point, the big dog reminds the little yapper of his place. Unfortunately, the American commander in chief is a cat in a dog-eat-dog world.

Obama isn't even a tough, feral cat. No he's a fancy cat that only wants to eat the expensive kind of cat food and strut around demanding attention.

In the great scheme of things Kathleen Parker is a non-entity but she spent the last year and a half telling us stupid conservatives how, well, stupid we are and that she, Brooks and the gang knew better.

Now suddenly she realizes that Obama isn't exactly what she thought she was and is going to pretend it was a mistake everyone made. Well it wasn't. Plenty of us were smart enough to see this disaster coming from a hundred miles away and we shouldn't let her forget it.

Thanks to @jimgeraghty

Posted by: DrewM at 07:50 AM | Comments (6)
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Supreme Court Grants Cert in Second Amendment Incorporation Case!
— Gabriel Malor

This is the question that the Court held off considering in Heller.

Whether the Second Amendment is incorporated into the Due Process Clause or the Privileges or Immunities Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment so as to be applicable to the States, thereby invalidating ordinances prohibiting possession of handguns in the home.

Heller finally settled the question of whether the Second Amendment protects an individual right to firearms. But unlike most of the Bill of Rights, the Second Amendment has generally (and with some exceptions back in the 1800s) not been applied to the states.

The case is McDonald v. Chicago. Fun fact: the suit was filed the same day Heller was decided.

The filings in the case so far, including the Seventh Circuit's less-than-stellar order, can be found here (scroll down).

Legal geekery below the fold. more...

Posted by: Gabriel Malor at 06:57 AM | Comments (16)
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Boxer and Kerry's Cap-and-Tax Bill
— Gabriel Malor

Global warmening returns to Capitol Hill today as Senator Kerry and Ma'am Boxer introduce their version of cap-and-trade. They're calling their bill—which lacks crucial details like how many and to whom carbon credits will be allocated—"a starting point."

One of the most contentious sections of the House bill was the list of industries and other benefactors that would receive free pollution credits, which could eventually be worth billions of dollars. The Senate draft does not spell out who would get free credits, a topic that is likely to be crucial to Senate negotiations.

The entire draft is "a starting point" said Tony Kreindler of the Environmental Defense Fund, an environmental group. "It's going to change fairly substantially as they move forward."

As in the House, the Senate bill provides financial assistance to workers who lose their jobs because of the legislation.

Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., one of the Senate's most vocal opponents of climate-change action, predicted the bill won't even be debated on the Senate floor before the end of the year, let alone come up for a vote. "Why should Democrats bring up something that's going to further entrench them against the American people?" he told reporters Tuesday.

Boxer has vowed to hold hearings on it in October, but that hardly seems likely with Senate Finance tied up with Obamacare. This has got to be giving the White House fits because it distracts from the President's signature issue. At a time when he wants the Democrats focused on ironing out their differences on the public option (READ: getting bought off), the Boxer-Kerry bill will split them further.

The problem is that Boxer and Kerry know they have no more time to wait around for the President. The papers say they're introducing the bill now because they want diplomats at an environmental conference in December to think the United States is serious about global warming. That's not it.

The truth is what I've been saying for some time now. If the Democrats' Far Left agenda doesn't become law this year, they won't get another chance until 2012—assuming the President is reelected. The grudging, bought, lip-service support of centrist Democrats for things like card check, Obamacare, mortgage cramdown, and cap-and-tax is going out the window as soon as the election season gets going next year.

Democrats elected on the President's coattails in red districts know that they are vulnerable. Signing on to more progressive anti-prosperity legislation will end their chances at reelection. And so, if it doesn't get done now, it won't get done. The President already shot his wad on the spendulus. He will never again have the political or personal capital that he did in February of this year.

And if (when?) the Republicans come roaring back in 2010, Democrats can just forget about it.

Oh, Also Go Read This: It's an interview with Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship. He hits many of the right notes, including on the economic destruction wrought by government regulation and the damage environmentalists cause to vulnerable third-world populations.

Posted by: Gabriel Malor at 06:08 AM | Comments (19)
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