Archive for March, 2012

Grievance theater: inhibiting honest dialog

The grievance theater is never really about the specific case, the specific shooting; it’s about the links between the social problems of the black community, the compromises of civil liberties necessary to keep entire cities from turning into Detroit and the inability of the media to address the sources of crime as anything but the phantoms of white racism. It’s about a black leadership that is more interested in posturing as angry activists and shaking loose some money, than in healing their own community’s problems. And so the same story repeats itself again and again without an honest dialogue or anything meaningful coming out of it.

Daniel Greenfield discusses the idea that the Trayvon Martin Circus Reveals Race Card Bankruptcy. He notes that the civil riot is a looser’s last ditch tactic.

The last two Democratic presidents were southern governors, but the current occupant is a veteran of the corrupt urban political machine where there are only two games in town and when the money runs out, this is the one you play. The money is running out, the polls are running down and accordingly we have been treated to an episode of Grievance Theater, with our beloved leader in the role of healer and inciter. … Our racial dysfunction has always been secondary to our political dysfunction and now our political dysfunction is second to none. We have the best government that Warren Buffett’s money could buy and that ACORN’s election fraud can achieve. And we have a national government that is starting to look like the dysfunctional urban governments at the center of the grievance theaters.

It is a part of the distraction strategy. It is an outcome of failed policies regarding welfare legislation. The grievance theater is just one more example of a lack of intellectual integrity that destroys rather than creates.

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Understanding the opposition: The elites vs reality in regards to Obamacare

Jonathan Alder asks Why Did Legal Elites Underestimate the Case Against the Mandate? “A better question to ask is: why did so many expect legal elites to have any particular insight into the current court?”

There are a number of points raised. One is about the dismissive attitude using ridicule and sneers in considering opposing views. Another is the focus on academia turning from what has been to fantasies about what should be. Another is ideological bias enhanced by a selected community.

“In teaching our students to be effective lawyers it is important that we teach them how to understand opposing legal arguments on their own terms. … you can’t effectively advocate your own position until you truly understand the other side. This can be difficult to do, particularly when we have strong feelings about a subject. Someone who believes the PPACA is a long-overdue step toward remedying the profound injustices of the American health care system is not predisposed to embrace arguments that the PPACA is unconstitutional. And if those same academics both lack colleagues with opposing points of view and have no particular professional interest in making sure they fairly consider the other side, it is easy for them to overlook the strength of opposing arguments and reduce them to caricatures. Ridiculing the need for a limiting principle or other anti-mandate arguments may get approving nods in the faculty lounge, but, as we saw this week, it won’t receive an equally warm welcome in court.”

The phenomena is seen outside of the legal sphere as well. The climate alarmists display similar problems. Many of those STEM related topics that have “alternative” pasted on the front also show this behavior in their advocates. It is why those who do hold onto intellectual integrity feel like they are talking to a brick wall when they encounter such advocates. The concern is about what will happen when reality crashes in as it appears might happen with the health care legislation.

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glimmers – support for civilization in the Boy Scouts

Worth reading: Boys to Men at Fraters Libertas.

“It’s not quite the same as the Scouts as I remember it from my days as a Cub and Boy Scout. …

“Having said all that, it’s hard to name a similar organization that does more to promote traditional values of faith, patriotism, honor, and civic duty than the Boy Scouts of America. They still teach you that are clear differences between right and wrong. They still teach you to respect the American flag and the country it represents. They still teach you to give thanks to God for all that we have been given. They still teach boys the skills and virtues they need to be men.”

The organization has been under assault. So far, it has managed to hold its ground. The battle continues. The stakes are high.

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Moral equivalency meeting resistance?

“Warraq declares that if their system is to endure, Westerners must acknowledge that “the great ideas of the West — rationalism, self-criticism, the disinterested search for truth, the separation of church and state, the rule of law and equality under the law, freedom of thought and expression, human rights, and liberal democracy — are superior to any others devised by humankind.” Likewise, it is critical to compare Western ideals to those of the Islamists, which are antithetical to liberty and increasingly threaten it. A glance at how women and minorities are treated by strict Islamic law is sufficient to expose multiculturalism’s “lie that all cultures are worthy of equal respect and equally embracing of individual freedom and democracy,” to quote reformist Muslim Salim Mansur.”

“Will the decades ahead be shaped by unapologetic pride in the West’s objectively superior system, as voiced by Claude Guéant? Or will the mindset of his critics prevail, thus sapping morale, projecting weakness, emboldening Islamists, and accelerating the decay? If the former, the West will survive — because it will have chosen survival. If the latter, the new barbarians will not have to climb over the gates as in days of yore; they will simply stroll through the ones opened for them by Western apathy.”

David J Rusin describes the ruckus resulting from a French interior minister defending his culture. He says Western Survival Depends on Western Pride

Governance is not the only issue. Much of the green movement is about a guilt rather than a pride in what western cultures have wrought. There is a blindness into the Grace of the Lord as expressed in western culture values and morality that has enriched so many individuals and societies. That blindness tends to direct the path back into the pit that is exemplified by the encounters in Afghanistan and Iraq.

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Anything for the paradigm: more ugly politics

A black kid gets shot by a police wanna-be and the race baiters go ballistic. Similar to the recent misogeny paradigm assault, this one also had a ‘show and tell’ hearing presented by Democrat Congressmen. Collateral damage is also present as a wrong address has put the fear of the mob front and center for one couple. Mohr and Hutchinson (AP) describe how Supporters of Fla. shooter [are] fearful of speaking out:

“Trayvon Martin’s supporters pack churches, swarm rallies and wear hooded sweat shirts in solidarity while friends and family of George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer who shot the unarmed teen to death, remain largely out of sight. The few that have defended Zimmerman did so reluctantly, most fearing public backlash.”

It appears that the mob has even gone to robbing convenience stores to show their support for the ‘innocent victim’ of racism. The hoodie has become on par with the veil and burka.

On the other end of the spectrum is a story about people who are fed up with the glorification of violence and social misfits. White reports about Critical charges dropped against Michigan militia:

“A federal judge dismissed the most serious charges Tuesday against seven members of a Michigan militia who were rounded up as homegrown extremists accused of plotting war against the U.S., saying their expressed hatred of law enforcement didn’t amount to conspiracy against the government.

“The decision is an embarrassment for the government, which secretly planted an informant and an FBI agent inside the Hutaree militia four years ago and claimed members were armed for war in rural southern Michigan.”

“But there never was an attack. Defense lawyers say highly offensive remarks about police and the government were wrongly turned into a high-profile criminal case that drew public praise from U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who called Hutaree a “dangerous organization.””

It is possible to try to put in a ‘both sides are the same’ on these two cases but there is a difference. The race baiters have engaged in threats and violence that has been carried out with support from the President and a political party. The ‘white militia’ was all words and isolated in both geographic and political scope. Justice seems gone awry and the many who have been quiet may not stay that way in light of such distortions. For instance, a 2007 photographer arrest incident was finally settled in Boston with a payment of $170 and the discipline of two police officers (fs). People are watching and listening and talking with each other and it is not only the aggrieved but also those worried about civilization and society and its morals and values.

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What you call it says something about how you think it

California to Texas Translation Guide provides a table of California labels and what an hypothetical Texan might call the same thing.

It does bring to mind the problems in Oregon and Nevada, especially, about the impact of Californians moving to the state and messing with the politics. Perhaps those states should prepare manuals and community college courses for those new to the state about how to blend in and leave the reasons they left their previous residence behind with that residence.

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tactics and strategy: that most primitive of human instincts

“The left has centuries ago trademarked themselves as history’s thugs, the grim, intolerant people with the brass knuckles and more if you get out of line and dare to speak your mind. From the guillotine of 1789 to the lists of enemies of the people in the 1920s to Chinese Roulette in the 1960s. In America it has run the gamut from the lynching of blacks to union thuggery to intimidating sponsors of talk radio in the twittering 21st century. It’s all to the same purpose.”

Jeffrey Lord examines the battle plan at Media Matters about The Plot to Get Rush.

“When we work our way through what Angelo Carusone and his Media Matters comrades and others are doing when they target Rush, or went after Glenn Beck, or plan to do in targeting Sean Hannity and Sarah Palin and who knows who after that (Levin? Laura?) remember: this is the way the Left — the global left throughout history, not simply the American Left today — has always behaved. A fanatical intolerance is part of the leftist DNA.”

“The skillful, clever use of fear (not to mention hate) is the defining trait of leftists throughout history. Fear is the primitive emotion the left feeds on like a junkie needs drugs. It is a trait repeatedly manifested in history by the use of intimidation or bully-boy tactics to assert raw power. It is the vividly identifiable scarlet thread of intolerance that has shown itself in one leftist movement after another on down through the centuries, regardless of nationality.”

The assault on free speech is not new. The tactics are tried and true. The question is whether people will allow themselves to be manipulated by FUD mongering, threats, and intimidation. The strategy uses an inclination towards fear to leverage its efforts. That is a worry because it takes effort to overcome fear and to uncover the threat and to understand it for what it really is.

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Behavior is telling

“However, I do think this episode—and the reaction of the skeptic community during Climategate—are quite illustrative of the two camps’ approaches to the actual science. Back when the Climategate emails were first spreading around the Internet, I distinctly remember many people in the comments at blogs such as ClimateAudit warning their peers by saying things like, “Guys, remember, we’re skeptics. This is too good to be true. Let’s not jump up and down on this, because it might be a trap to make us look gullible.”

“In contrast, the major players on the other side—when Heartland was “caught” saying things that were far more absurd than what the Climategate emails revealed—jumped with glee.”

Robert Murphy describes why Diminished Climate Alarmism: Lessons from L’Affair Heartland is a result of ‘suspicious’ behavior that even a non-expert climatologist can see.

“The Heartland affair has shown not merely that some climate alarmists (namely Gleick) will stoop to outright deception, and most of his peers will close ranks to defend him in a sort of Green Wall of Silence. Perhaps more disturbing, it reveals that these people really have no idea how their opponents on the climate issue actually view the world. So when they dismiss skeptics as having no legitimate arguments, it should make outsiders take pause.”

A complicating factor here is that people often believe what they are told rather than what they see. Those who are trying to rationalize and defend points of view or beliefs that will not stand scrutiny will often describe the ‘other guy’ or do what they can to divert attention from their own behavior. It does not take much to observe the actual situation but that ‘not much’ does take some effort.

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Do you hear the rocks cry?

“In a nation of free men we need not listen to God, the Bible, preachers, Rush, Raquel, Henley or yours truly. Listen or not, these rocks will not be moved even if the whole nation flies headlong across the bebelos, at the same time making request of the taxpayers, to pay for the flight.”

Rev Michael Bresciani cites Luke 19:40 [America Crosses the Bebelos – The Rush to Boot Rush] where the Pharisees told Jesus to have his disciples shut up about Jesus being king who comes in the name of the Lord.

“It is obvious that Rush took a brief flight from his own better discretionary guide and Ms. Fluke really did deserve an apology, but what is also clear is that what Ms. Fluke was asking the congress to consider is likewise reprehensible. … This is a day when the demand for our rights often is at odds with the rights of others. This is not a war against women’s rights but a question about the rights of the unborn, the church and anyone else who must be disregarded to gain a bit of help from the fed. … Every reality known to man says that any red blooded male from Bangor to Los Angeles would probably think (Even if they did not say it) exactly the same way Rush did after hearing the news. Pitching the congress to shake $3,000.00 from Catholic insurers for contraceptives has got to invoke some response. Rush’s choice of words would be mild if the truth were known.”

Somebody is taking notice and describing what he sees. There is a campaign to silence any such heresy but it just may be that, if that campaign is successful, even the rocks will cry out and proclaim the villany, the bebelos as Bresciani puts it.

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How it’s done: silencing the opposition

“There is no equivalent of Media Matters on the conservative side, a well-funded organization devoted to silencing political opponents through secondary advertiser boycotts. George Soros donated $1 million in 2010 for the anti-Fox News campaign, the same year Media Matters hired Carusone for the various “Stop” campaigns.”

William Jacobson details how Media Matters astroturfed the Limbaugh secondary boycott. It is a case study in the tactics of total war in the ideological realm.

As noted, it is yet another example of just how off base the ‘both sides do it’ excuse really is.

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There is a difference: tolerance and bigotry

“They can unfriend and block all they want on social networking, because those are personal choices not to listen to differing opinions, and every American has that choice. The problem is when they want government to unfriend and block so that no one has that choice — and that’s the kind of intolerance that’s much more dangerous than humorous.”

Ed Morrissey describes a PEW survey of social networking sites that finds Liberals most intolerant online

Ed notes that there are measures for many public venues. For social networking that is in readership counts. For talk radio, that is audience. Much of the intolerance noted is perhaps an outcome of frustration. Air America, for instance, was created to combat Rush Limbaugh. It failed. Since efforts to garner market share have failed, persuasion is being abandoned in favor of force. That is where boycott efforts and the government come in.

The other side of this is the matter of persistence and vigor. The more desperate the defense of an untenable position becomes, the more irrational it becomes. Whether it is an ideology, such as climate alarmism or many so called ‘green’ endeavors, or a perceived foe, such as Limbaugh, the assault to maintain a fantasy can become dangerous to all as collateral damage is not a concern.

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Just where is the hate?

“Free speech must work both ways. But back in Dublin, whenever I speak up for Israel, the Fiachras and Fionas look at me aghast, as if I’d pissed on their paninis.

“This one-way freedom of speech spurs false information. The Boycott Israel brigade is a prime example. They pressurised Irish supermarkets to remove all Israeli produce from their shelves — a move that directly affected the Palestinian farmers who produce most of their fruit and vegetables under the Israeli brand.

“Perhaps our problem is not with Israel, but with our own over-stretched sense of importance — a sense of moral superiority disproportional to the importance of our little country? “

Nicky Larking wanted to do a film … to explain his hate. He made the mistake of doing honest background research for the film and found his hate was misdirected. He notices that Israel is a refuge, but a refuge under siege. He talks about boycotts and people unwilling to listen to any foreign idea. There is another such dishonest boycott effort in progress right now: Matter of fact, there are several. Look at what the unions are trying to do in Wisconsin, what the climate alarmists are doing at IPCC, or what the so-called feminists are trying to do in talk radio.

The common factor, one that Larking noted when he went to Israel to talk with people on all both sides. The unwillingness to listen and the lack of intellectual integrity is highly correlated with a senseless hatred.

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Energy phobias, fears, and something else

“The Achilles’ heel of nuclear, of course, is that despite its stellar safety record and statistical standing as the least dangerous way of generating electricity, there is always the specter of that one huge accident that will take a devastating toll and leave some large portion of the earth uninhabitable. Six coal miners a day die in accidents in China. Thirteen people die every year trying to service windmills by landing on the 45-story structures in helicopters. So far there have been no casualties at Fukushima. But the 12-mile zone still remains evacuated and mobs in Japan, India, Germany, and sometimes the United States are calling for nuclear power to be abandoned altogether.”

Nuclear Since Fukushima notes that “One year later, there have be no casualties from radiation. But will the worldwide Nuclear Renaissance revive?”

“The real problem is that the American nuclear industry has become one giant corporation operating out of central headquarters in the 11-story offices of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. … Such centralization makes innovation almost impossible. Over the past decade, inventive engineers have adapted the small modular reactors we have been putting on submarines since the 1950s into commercial designs. There are almost a dozen proposals for such reactors on the drawing boards but none has much of a chance of making it through NRC licensing over the next decade. … So there is a distinct possibility that we could wake up in ten years to find the giants of Asia have passed us by in nuclear technology and we have no choice but to buy it from them—just as we are now buying our nuclear infrastructure from France.”

Nuclear is not the only energy resource subjected to phobias and fears and irrational opposition. Recent technology advances have resulted in significant benefit in the cost and supply of natural gas. That technology is under attack. The Truth about Fracking

“But don’t bother with evidence: The opposition to fracking isn’t at its heart environmental or economic or scientific. It’s ideological, and that ideology is nihilism.

“Benign environmentalists are opposed to pollution, as all sensible people are; malign environmentalists are opposed to energy and most of what it enables. Their enemy isn’t drilling rigs and ethane crackers and engineers and their technological marvels: Their enemy is the kind of civilization that makes such feats and wonders possible, the fact that a smart guy with a big idea can make a hole in the ground and summon up power from the vasty deep. Their enemy is us.”

Then there’s policy: America’s Energy Disaster.

“The catastrophic deterioration of the American oil position is shown even more starkly in figure 2, which presents the U.S. share of total world oil production over the period from 1940 to 2010. In 1940, the United States produced 60 percent of the world’s oil. Today we produce 7 percent. Or, put another way, in 1940, the United States, alone, produced half again as much oil as the entire rest of the world put together; today they produce 13 times as much as we do.

“America’s massive shortfall in liquid-fuel production is an ongoing economic disaster and a five-alarm strategic weakness. It cannot be remedied by business as usual, a philosophy of less-is-more consolation, goofy New Age–inspired feel-good projects, make-believe success claims, or rhetorical spin. Rather, it must be dealt with in a serious and forceful way.”

There has been a thread of thought in the modern era about resources being totally consumed and no longer available. The ‘peak oil’ idea has been particularly pernicious as its advocates seem to get ever more strident while the available resources become ever larger. That same group seems highly correlated with the nuclear-ophobia activists who seek to shut down that energy source by fear mongering. What is missing in the opposition is the wealth generated with its accompanying improvement in the environment as well as in the improvement of the health and welfare of the populace.

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Heartbroken: why do my heros do that?

Brandon Darby wonders Why ‘Game Change’ Producer Tom Hanks Must Destroy Sarah Palin.

“From “Bosom Buddies” to “Forrest Gump,” and from the European theater to the shores of Iwo Jima, Hanks captivated me. His interviews on MSNBC sounded so patriotic, and I held him as the standard for what a patriotic Democrat looked like before the far Left propulsion of the Obama presidency. My friends even know me to say I wish the Democratic Party looked like that again; a patriotic ideology that simply believed in more government-based solutions.

“Something changed in Hanks. As the producer for the anti-Sarah Palin film “Game Change,” Hanks left the pedestal I had placed him on and entered the world of being nothing more than a merchant of Leftist smear.

“Seriously, how does Hanks portend to to idolize America’s Greatest Generation as he’s stated in interviews about “Band of Brothers” while simultaneously supporting leaders who would make our grandfathers and their WWII brothers weep? How can a “patriot” support a president like Obama who would refer to the Constitution of the Unites States as “some rigid idea of what government should or shouldn’t do”?

“Deciding to engage in a lying, disingenuous smear on Palin is even a step further into his ideological vomit. Hanks, with all his money, power, goodwill and influence, has chosen to join his Democratic friends in attacking a strong conservative woman with an impeccable record of success and service.”

That is the question for the age. When the opportunity arises to explore the question with someone in such a camp, even with a non-celebrity, the results can be ugly. The behavior one sees is in Dr. Santy’s realm. You don’t want to explore that territory without being properly prepared.

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Shut ’em up. Shut ’em down. Behavior, intent, and perception

“Hate crime legislation is a child of the modern political correctness movement. It is a movement that has been wildly successful in marginalizing First-Amendment free speech, infecting every facet of social interaction. Pastors in historically conservative Protestant churches are scaling back their time-honored messages of original sin and redemption. Military chaplains are receiving politicized orders to alter their choices of words used in invocations. Public schools have virtually eradicated all mention of God during school hours or at sporting or extracurricular events.

“We as a society must not allow notions of bigotry or any thought processes by criminal perpetrators to cloud our judgment on the disposition of these matters. To do so is to deny intellectual honesty. For this is a first step toward a time when the wrong political, cultural, or religious thought will land us in a cold, dark cell block — even if no real crime has been committed.

“Do not think it cannot happen. The gulags of Soviet Russia, the millions of dead in Communist China’s Cultural Revolution, and the killing fields of Pol Pot’s Cambodia will beg to differ.”[‘Hate Crimes’ and ‘Occupy’ Protests]

Means, motive, and method used to be the guide for solving crimes. The crime itself was an observable event. Enforcement and prosecution occurred after th event. That has been changing. Hate crimes are inferred. Enforcement anticipates an event. It is not behavior that is the problem but rather the state of mind. The two are always connected which is why motivation is always an issue in crime. What is happening is that the focus is changing from behavior supported and explained by motivation to motivation creating crime to the motivation itself being the crime. Since motivation is much more subject to interpretation, the enforcement and prosecution also become a matter of interpretation. That leads to police and prosecutor abuse.

Since speech is often the first expression of motivation, it is speech that becomes the ‘observable behavior’ in determining if one has illegal motivation, such as hate. That is not so simple as one can see in how the meaning of speech is distorted with so many recent examples.

You don’t like the message? Instead of changing the channel, the modern view seems to be to shut them up. Then, if that isn’t enough, shut them down. Put them in a gulag … or worse. There is a story this morning of a number of kids stoned to death in the mideast for what they were wearing [Daily Mail]. That shut them down, sure enough.

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Sometimes life at point is ugly – but still necessary

“A watershed moment for the Girl Scouts came in 1993, when they amended their “promise” so as to omit the word “God.” Since then, there has been a slow but steady slide that has landed the organization in the not-so-loving arms of Planned Parenthood, and the feminists and hard-left politicians whom Planned Parenthood attracts.”[The Girl Scouts: Planned Parenthood’s ‘Tactical Arm’]

It’s about the issue that got Limbaugh going. It’s a gift that seems to keep giving if you are a student of tactics and behavior driven by ideologies.

“Memo to Moyers regarding hate: it is possible to disagree with someone, even severely, without hating him. But we can be sure that Moyers is well aware of the rhetorical usefulness of the accusation of hatred: after all, it’s commonly accepted that those who “hate” have a fatal character flaw that delegitimizes their criticism of the target of their “hatred.”

“The problem is not that Moyers admires Alinsky as a good man, but that he is intellectually dishonest and vindictive regarding those who don’t share his admiration. His erudite tone and his measured, smooth-as-silk delivery seem to be aimed at damning what he portrays as knuckledragging conservatives as much as praising Saul Alinsky, and this stains Moyers’s commentary with brutish propaganda.

“Another legendary master of mobilizing people for a socialist cause, a man much maligned and long dead, like Alinsky, may be smiling from his grave. After all, it does seem that Josef Goebbels would approve.”
[Bill Moyers, Progressive Propagandist]

“The current assault on Rush Limbaugh and his advertisers is no accident; it’s all part of a plan: Media Matters Project 2012. And it has nothing to do with balance, or fairness.” [Brietbart]

“Members of the professional left reacted with outrage to my column this week calling them out for their fake war against media misogyny. Instead of addressing the encyclopedia of left-wing misogyny I raised, many liberals chose instead to start a ferocious battle with all manner of straw men.” [Critics of Rush Limbaugh Ignore Bill Maher, Matt Taibbi Misogyny]

What is it all about? William Tucker describes Why Vulgarity Matters

“Perhaps the most notable trend in the arts over the last 20 years has been the rise of pointless vulgarity. We haven’t quite gotten to the point of full frontal nudity or open sexual intercourse on daytime television yet, but we’re getting awfully close. And if and when it happens, you can be sure there will arise a chorus from the liberal intelligentsia saying it’s just “freedom of speech” and anyone who is opposed to it is either “prudish” at one extreme or “fascist” at the other.”

It will take a while for people to figure out that Limbaugh was right and not being vulgar and cease denigrating the ‘name calling’ to see it for what it was. Calling a spade a spade may be ugly but it is also reality. What Limbaugh has done is to put the vulgarity and actual villany on the table. It is the vulgarity of an ideological point of view and the vile nature of the means used to rationalize it. When the surgeon gets into blood and guts, it is entirely a different thing than when a serial killer does it.

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Tolerance, tactics, ideologies, and the exposure of values

“The intolerance of Ms. Fluke is the culmination of the liberal war on America. For decades Americans have been told that they must tolerate the tenets of the liberal faith because in doing so, they are respecting the rights of others. At the same time, however, Americans have been told that liberals are not required to tolerate what liberals do not like.

“With Ms. Fluke, however, liberals have gone beyond demanding tolerance to demanding the obedience of Americans to the liberal faith’s moral code. While liberals still try to play the victim card — poor Ms. Fluke is merely a simple law student whose life is harsh due to the need to pay $9/month for her contraceptives — in reality it is they who are the oppressors.”

Tom Triko describes Fluke and Liberals’ Bodyguard of Lies as a bit more than just a name calling, ad hominem thing. He does malign Limbaugh’s rant as being a diversion but it can also be argued that, without that rant, the Fluke phenomena would have just run below the radar until if hit the ground in a small cloud of dust.

As it is, the public is exposed to the behavior and antics of a liberal activist, dishonesty and reality in regards to misogyny and its use as a political tool, hypocrisy, distortion of issues, and a good look at just where the vile and uncivil rhetoric label really belongs. Then they can better decide whether ‘both sides are the same’ or not and what, if anything, they should do about it.

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More on Limbaugh

On the Limbaugh brouhaha there are a few facts that do need to be kept in mind. One is that the focus is on a dedicated and experienced activist who selected a target with careful consideration about how to make the most noise. She wasn’t the typical grad school co-ed. Another fact is that her appearance in Congress was a contrived machination of the Democrat party. There is also the nuance in Limbaugh’s apology as it was mostly to his audience for failing to meet an established standard of discourse and only secondarily towards his use of the words slut or prostitute.

Michael Kinsley may not get Rush but he does get the controversy: The insincere push to crush Rush

“Of course, the insincerity is on both sides. The pursuers all pretend to be horrified and “saddened” by this unexpected turn of events. In fact, they’re delighted. Why not? Their opponent has committed the cardinal political sin: a gaffe.

“A gaffe, as someone once said, is when a politician tells the truth. This is a bit imprecise. The term “politician” covers any political actor, certainly including Rush. And the troublesome statement needn’t be the truth, as it certainly wasn’t in this case: more like “the truth about what he or she is really thinking.”

“the self-righteous parade out the door by Limbaugh’s advertisers is hard to stomach. Had they never listened to Rush before, in all the years they had been paying for commercials on his show? His sliming of a barely known law student may be a new low — even after what he’s said about Nancy Pelosi and Michelle Obama — but it’s not a huge gap.

“If you don’t care for something Rush Limbaugh has said, say why and say it better. If you’re on the side of truth, you have a natural advantage.

“And if you’re taking on Rush Limbaugh, you’re probably on the side of truth.”

Where Kinsley misses, of course, is in the belief that Limbaugh is not on the side of truth. That is a bit of hubris of the sort that needs examination.

Nick Gillespie says It’s Like Totally Different When a Liberal Blowhard Guy Calls a Conservative Woman a Twat!. He provides a bit of context regarding the use of derogatory terms.

“If you’ve ever needed a reason to rethink dumb attachments to the left-right, liberal-conservative Manicheanism at the heart of conventional politics, the sort of idiotic Team Red vs. Team Blue mentality underscored by Noah’s need to exonerate the misogyny of his ideological allies should give you something to ponder.”

If you think that is technobabble, try the Christian Science Monitor for a distortion (Rush Limbaugh ‘slut’ comment reveals a double standard on sex)

“Limbaugh issued a brief apology over the weekend on his website. “I did not mean a personal attack on Ms. Fluke,” Limbaugh wrote. And I believe him. Limbaugh didn’t have any particular animus against Fluke; she was just a convenient stand-in for any female who wants to exert her sexual autonomy.”

This is particularly strange in that the particular comment – seeking others to pay for contraception – was cited as a stimulus for Limbaugh’s remarks.

“What does it say about the college coed . . . who goes before a congressional committee and essentially says that she must be paid to have sex?” Mr. Limbaugh asked on his Wednesday program. He said this makes her a “slut” and “prostitute.” He has since apologized for his remarks.

It is one sort of dishonesty to obsess on the labels Limbaugh used to vilify him as a person, it entirely another to completely miss what the words actually say in order to create an imaginary support for one’s point of view.

What Kinsley touched on was the primary and secondary boycott efforts. This episode has been used to assault Limbaugh advertisers to such an extent that there were ‘innocent’ casualties like NetFlix. The secondary boycott is the in the response of Limbaugh sympathizers. This effect is seen in the stories about how Carbonite’s stock value has taken a dive. Limbaugh explains this morning that the primary boycott press coverage is significantly off base and that means that the media coverage will just add more ammunition to his ongoing theme concerning the MSM and his opposition.

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They just can’t help it — Mann on defense shows the behavior patterns

Throughout “The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars,” there is the continuous resorting to childish, unprofessional name-calling. … Mr. Mann relies substantially on progressive sources … The book’s unintentionally arrogant tone, all too typical of progressive academia

Mann rises to the defense and Anthony Sadar notes that it is Slap-shot climate science.

Mann’s paper about traumatic, human caused climate warming was shown to be delinquent in regards to statistics. His other efforts prompted the AG of Virginia to investigate as fraud – until the court ruled that a state university had immunity from such investigations. The FOIA related improperly released communications revealed a collusion to inhibit criticism. That needed a defense – at Amazon: The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars: Dispatches from the Front Lines

Regardless, even if Mr. Mann’s reconstruction of climate change from the recent thousand years is an actual reproduction of such change (which, based on understandably limited proxy data, is arguable), the climate science authorities’ insistence that human-produced emissions will lead to adverse meteorological mischief across the globe throughout the rest of this century and beyond is pure prognostic poppycock. The climate system is too complex. The role of the principal climate regulator, water, in all its forms – as solid in ice sheets, liquid in cloud droplets and oceans, and vapor in ambient air – is too unknown for predictive climate models to grant forecasting fortune to specially imbued foretellers.

I realize such heretical talk is not welcome in the climate of today’s science, but, as we all know, climate changes.

From a book like this, some (many) will accept it as the Gospel Truth (it’s in print!). Others will try to figure out its limitations. As always, a first clue as to how to read it is in Sadar’s observations about tone and focus or the behavior of the author. When the intellectual integrity shows gaps there, the gaps in the content are quite likely as well.

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Freedom to speak one’s mind?

“This is a massive assault on free speech the likes of which we have rarely seen. It is plastered all over the front pages, and even in mainstream outlets such as the Los Angeles Times, the vitriolic and disgusting response to Limbaugh’s choice of words far exceeds the shock value of those words. Suddenly, the leftist media is holier than Mother Teresa as it wallows in the gutter. The dissonance is amazing.”

It is easy to find commentary condemning Limbaugh’s labeling of a women’s activist that uses hate speech and terms much more worthy of condemnation. Matt Holtzman describes The Left’s assault on free speech.

“That Nancy Pelosi, a nominal Catholic, scheduled the hearing explicitly to promote a false narrative and challenge the teachings of the same Church to which she tells us she is obedient is lost in the argument.

“The same media that has done its best to smear any opposition to their agenda is now in overdrive to silence its opponents. This is an issue that goes to the heart of the First Amendment.

“It is the exact same people condemning Limbaugh who said the most vile things about Breitbart upon his death and about Sarah Palin and anyone who has threatened their hegemony over the narrative. “Bitter clingers” and “right-wing religious zealots” are their stock in trade.Blacks who vote or campaign as Republicans are called the most vile names. God forbid one disagrees with the party line. They can’t shoot dissidents, but they can do their best to destroy them.

“When the country has a majority who feel strongly about faith, their narrative distorts reality beyond recognition.”

You can see the real motive in the zeal with which success in intimidating Limbaugh sponsors is highlighted and celebrated. These folks are not trying to engage in debate. They have no interest in proving the worth of their ideas in any honest way. They not only will not listen themselves, they do not want anyone else to hear anything that they consider threatening.

All the noise about Limbaugh covers many sins. Remember the recent confession in regards to identity theft and paper forgery by a climate alarmist zealot? The radio types describe this as burying the signal in the noise. That is going to require some means to control the noise. That means that when a professional ‘activist’ whose goal in life is to engage in dishonest assault on the ideologies of others – like Fluke going after Jesuit priests in collusion with Democrat partisans playing games with congressional committees, it is each citizen that will need to put their condemnation in the right place. Limbaugh is taking the hits for all of us. It is decision time about just what we are going to do.

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