An interview with Mark Steyn
Steyn discusses a number of issues, but of interest is this on religion:
"So the dynamism of American faith exemplifies the virtues of the broader society: the US has a free market in religion, Europe had cosseted overregulated monopolies and cartels. The other salient point is that obviously Europe does have a religion: radical secularism. The era of the state church has been replaced by an age in which the state itself is the church. European progressives still don't get this: they think the idea of a religion telling you how to live your life is primitive, but the government regulating every aspect of it is somehow advanced and enlightened."
Don't believe the childhood vaccine fearmongers
This story has been around a few years, but Michael Fumento article sums the issue up nicely. Self appointed scare mongering ninnies are telling people not to get their children vaccinated. Don't listen.
On a lighter note:
Garrison Keillor is a new columnist at Jewish World Review. Entertaining as ever, he manages to mention corn in his article. Important stuff, corn. No, seriously. :-)
More light stuff: Nonsequitur
Saturday, July 02, 2005
An interview with Mark Steyn
Posted by BigDog at 11:52 AM
***I am reposting some stuff from my blog to make my positions clear as well as fill Sparkle's metephorically big shoes.
"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things: the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feelings which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight: nothing he cares about more than his own personal safety: is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions and blood of better men than himself." – John Stuart Mill
Pacifism is an immoral choice in the face of aggression, both as individuals and as a society. Pacifists do not oppose aggression when attacked, inviting further aggression both to themselves and to their neighbors. Worse, many pacifists self-righteously oppose violence when others are attacked, but quickly change their mind when they themselves are assaulted, even calling upon others to fight for them.
The philosophical or religious basis for pacifistic views is irrelevant. Clearly, pacifists exist only where and when others have bled to insure the safety and security of the society. Safe from violence, pacifism seems like a rational decision, as if reason and not violence were why strife and violence are not troublesome.
"In the final choice, a soldier's pack is not so heavy a burden as a prisoner's chains." - Dwight D. Eisenhower
Further, those living free from fear and violence often slide into moral stupidity. Moral equivicators do not draw distinctions between self defense and aggression, often casting themselves and high-minded and moral for disparaging honorable soldiers and terrorists alike.
When pacifists get their way, people die. Cambodia, for example, millions died at the hands of Pol Pot, The Khmer Rouge commited the act, but our withdrawal, precipitated by US pacifists, allowed it to happen.
Sometimes pacifism appears to work. In India, Ghandi's pacifist movement seemed to be the means to free India from British colonial rule, but it was the British legal tradition that freed India. They listened to the arguement made for Indian independance, publicity and reason won because the British Parliment chose to honor its principles.
"If you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a small chance of survival. There may even be a worse case: you may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves." - Winston Churchill
Posted by BigDog at 11:07 AM
Rightwingsparkle Not Blogging Crises, Day 1.
The next couple weeks are going to be difficult for everyone. Rightwingsparkle is a kind, warm thoughtful person who actively blogs most every day on a range of issues. She makes blogging fun and her popularity is little wonder. I, well, I am a less active blogger, not to mention less kind. Rude, insulting people are going to find that I am skilled at cutting remarks, the merely ignorant may get a lecture. My interests are as diverse as Sparkle's but I am less inclined to discuss most issues. For those familiar with American cultural norms, she is a Southern Belle, I am a Northern Plainsman.
No need to fret, this is a temp gig. Sparkle will be back soon and she may even be able to blog on the road.
Posted by BigDog at 10:12 AM
Friday, July 01, 2005
I will be gone for two weeks but I am leaving my blog in the capable hands of my friend BigDog. He is tons smarter than I am, so be ready for that.
I have some really personal posts that I am going to link here for you to read while I am gone. They are kind of long, but some of my favorites. My regulars know them, but I thought any new readers might like them.
My First Love.
This one is about pro-life protesting.
This is about a very special man I knew.
Why I am pro-life.
Why I am Catholic.
If I can get to a computer, I will repost some of my favorite military posts back when no one was reading me! Enjoy BigDog and have a blessed and wonderful 4th of July!!!
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 10:27 PM
Thursday, June 30, 2005
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 12:16 PM
Ah Yes. Another Texas Governor who says what he thinks. Heh.
"From Channel 13’s Ted Oberg:
Governor Rick Perry had some parting words for an Eyewitness News reporter that may raise your eyebrows.
It was an innocent enough interview about the special session beginning in Austin. But the way it ended is where the questions begin.
Our questions were not recorded on tape, but in saying goodbye I told the governor, "Try as I may, Governor, I guess I can’t win this one."
Eleven seconds after he said goodbye, the camera crew was getting ready for the next interview with another station. That’s when Gov. Perry repeated what he thought I’d said, and added a few words of his own with his microphone on and tape still rolling.
"Try as I may, Governor, I’m not going to wait that long," Gov. Perry said. "Adios, Mofo." This is the kind of thing I want the Governor to say. But I want him to say it to David Dewhurst."
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 11:11 AM
Wednesday, June 29, 2005
Many of you have been asking to see my PBS funding post that they deleted over at UPC. I didn't have a copy of it, so I re-wrote it from memory. It has some changes, but most of it I could remember. Ironically I had no desire to write on PBS, but Goosefive who was posting that same day asked me to counter his. So I did. I am sure it wasn't just this post that got me kicked out. UPC and I just couldn't agree on anything. It was that simple. Anyway, it just so happens luckily that since UPC changed over to a new site they failed to delete my 3 posts from the old site. So I copied them and I have them as well. If any of you didn't get to read them and would like me to re-post them here, let me know. Anyway, here is the post on PBS.
The recent fight in Congress over reducing PBS funding is centered around the liberal politics of PBS. As Peggy Noonan says, "arguing over whether PBS is and has long been politically liberal is like arguing over whether the ocean is and has long been wet. Of course it is, and everyone knows it."
Peggy argues that PBS's programming should be reserved art and science and history. It is when they approach politics that it has the liberal reputation it has. Works of Shakespeare and Eugene O'Neil would never be shown on prime time TV. We need these programs. I recently watched a musical symphony called "Celtic Women" and it was one of the most moving and beautiful things I have listened to in a long time. But partisan politics diminishes what should be educational.
For example, I watched the last program of "Now" that Bill Moyer's hosted. (his new replacement is simply a young Moyers ideologically speaking) Moyer's last program was about the vast rightwing conspiracy. He began the program being dishonest. He called Sean Hannity of Fox News an "anchor." A total lie. As we all know, Hannity is a partisan commentator and has a liberal counterpart on the show, Allan Colmes, which Moyers conveniently never mentions. Brit Hulme, Chris Wallace, and Shepard Smith are "anchors." They give us the hard news, the "fair and balanced" news. Moyers was obviously not able to come up with any indication of those anchors being partisan though, so he used Hannity to make it look as if he were an anchor. This wasn't a small mistake either. It was deliberate. He put clips of Brit Hulme and Sean Hannity side by side. Then he goes on to show Hannity on his tour before the election being all "partisan." As if it were like Peter Jennings going out before audiences and telling people to vote for Kerry before the election. Hannity has never claimed to be anything but what he is, a devout Republican partisan pundit. He is certainly no anchor of news.
Moyer's also insisted that a lie was put out by the rightwing that Saddam was somehow connected to 9-11. He had no clips to show because that, of course, was never said nor implied by Fox News or Bush for that matter. Moyers proves it though by saying that 41% of those surveyed thought Saddam had something to do with 9-11. I hate to break it to Moyers, but 41% of the American people can't tell you where Poland is or who is the Sec. of State. Not because they are ignorant, but because they just don't care. How he figures it is Fox's fault that people believe that is beyond me.
It is that kind of programming that needs to be eliminated. Hillary stands in front of the camera protesting the cuts with Clifford the Big Red Dog behind her as if cartoons will cease to be if funding is cut, when in truth, all she is worried about is the liberal mouthpiece of PBS being shut down.
I say we fund PBS, but with rules and conditions of fair political balance if they insist on politics. In my opinion William Buckley Jr. was the only real conservative PBS ever had and he has been long gone.
Taxpayers fund PBS. Why ask Republicans to fund the opposition? We all fund it, let's have balance then.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 8:21 PM
The following is a re-post from the end of September of 2004. I have an update at the bottom.
Sometime between teaching my son to drive and throwing my daughter's Britney Spear's CD away, ("why mom???!!", "Uh.. lets see, when she is not dressing like a prostitute, she looks like white trash. She sings a haunting melody about masturbation and she is so stupid she couldn't get a clue from JLo to NEVER marry one of her dancers!") I realized that I am a mom of teenagers.
When did that happen? Wasn't I just 17 a few years ago?? I feel like I have been thrown down a time tunnel.
In my daughter's whines I hear something familiar, something I know I have heard before. Then it hits me. ITS ME! Is this some sort of cosmic revenge? I have to relive my own overdramatic totally unreasonable emotions? Yes I do. And I can't even complain to my Mom, she just giggles uncrontrollably.
When my daughter was almost 13 I asked her, "please don't be a bratty teenager, please stay the sweet little angel you are now, don't change!" She hugged me tightly and said, "Of course I won't Mom!!".......LIAR!!! After 2 yrs of slammed doors, tears, and proclamations of how I am ruining her life, I asked her "Is my sweet little girl EVER coming back? Huh? Is She? I want to know, because I really really miss her!" My daughter rolls her eyes in disgust, clearly wondering how she lives with such stupidity.
Sometimes when we are arguing a little voice in my head says,
"Whats wrong with a coed pajama party??? Oh, let her wear the skimpy halter top, you had one just like it!! When did you lose your sense of fun, your sense of adventure??" Hmmm.... I'm pretty sure I lost it when I saw "American Pie."
The other day a convertible pulls up with her friends ready to go. I rush outside and tell them to turn down the music so they can hear the traffic, buckle their seat belts, don't even think about drinking, and for God's sake button the top buttons of their shirts! My daughter closes her eyes hoping I will disappear in a puff of smoke. What she doesn't know is that I would give anything to hop in that car with them, turn up the music, have a beer, and remember what it was like to be young and carefree without the worry of motherhood.
At the moment, this job sucks. First, its never fun anymore. Second, I am ALWAYS the bad guy, and third, I can't even get drunk. ( Ok, I know I CAN, I just don't think I should) Maintaining my wise and "lets always do the right thing" attitude is wearing me out. It could just be my situation, but girls are alot harder. People tell me that they return to sanity around 22 or so. Good, just old to enough to pay for my stay in the mental ward. Where I will probably sit in small room with a telephone by my bed muttering "Why hasn't she called? Where is she? She is dead in a ditch! I know it!!"
Luckily my 3 boys seem to stroll through life happy and content. My oldest was born 30, I think. He has just always gotten it. He goes with the flow and obeys the rules (with the normal exceptions). The other two are young, still in that "Gosh, my mommy is so terrific!" stage that is the best part of being a Mom. So, I guess I have the best and the worst parts of being a Mom going on. If anyone has suggestons on how to handle the worst not requiring medication, I would appreciate it. Right now I think I will crank up my old LP of Pat Benatar, "Love is a battlefield." That girl rocked, didn't she?
*Update: After making a few changes, letting her earn my trust and grounding her when she loses it. I have to say that this last year has shown a vast improvement. I knew I needed a way to connect to her again, but we never seem to be able to be together. This year she asked to be in beauty pageant a couple of her friends were going to be in. I had never even watched a beauty pageant nor thought much of them, but then I realized that it would take alot of time getting ready for (and boy did it!) and that we could spend some quality time together. It absolutely worked! We had so much fun shopping for the clothes and makeup. I took her to some classes to prepare. We got to talk in the car a lot. We really just got to know each other again. (She will be competing in the Miss Texas Teen USA pageant at Thanksgiving with the title of our town, which I don't want to give out, but it will be on national TV and I will let you know closer to it)
She matured so much this year. It's nice to have my sweet girl back! We still argue over curfew and such, but for the really important things she has her head on straight.
I know she had to find her own way, I just didn't want her to have regrets. One day when she came home all mad because some people at school had been insulting her faith and she ran to get her Bible and typed up a bunch of verses about what they were arguing about, and brought them to school the next day to show them, I knew that the worse was finally over.
Love is a battelfield, but real love always wins the battle.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 10:34 AM
A Picture from the San Francisco Gay Pride Parade.
"The parade spilled into an afternoon festival near City Hall, where the decidedly diverse crowd gathered, with a cable car full of gay San Francisco cops and a booth staffed by an expert butt-spanker. Flesh was on wide display, but only camera-toting tourists seemed shocked." via SFgate
An expert butt spanker??? Do gay people really want to be represented this way? Seriously.
This must be the expert:
"Sex was on open display in some areas of the festival. In Leather Alley, "Daddy" Howard Hyatt, 53, spanked a young man on his bare butt -- first with his hand, then with a paddle, then with a brush -- as the man heaved with pain but didn't ask Hyatt to stop. The demonstration was meant as a safe introduction for newbies to dominance and submission."
Oh, feel free to caption. Who could resist?
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 1:41 AM
Tuesday, June 28, 2005
Ok, this is in bad taste, but still funny:
"In a surprise move expected to send shock waves through the world of TV journalism, CNN, the original cable news network, and NBC, which owns cable channels MSNBC and CNBC, announced a deal to consolidate their news divisions into a single giant network. The new network, to be called Where the White Women At or WWWA, is set to debut this week. CNN spokesman Jack Little explained the deal at a press conference Monday."
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 6:56 PM
What is wrong with the headline of this article?--
"Brian Williams Explains Why NBC Will Air The President's Address Tonight."
I mean shouldn't the "Big 3" explain why they aren't showing it, if they are not? This is the President of the United States after all. We are at war. Isn't that kinda important?
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 6:47 PM
Well, it seems the Unpaid Punditry Core has fired me. So I won't be blogging over there anymore. They deleted all my posts, so that is why the PBS funding post isn't there. I had been asked to join to provide another voice from the right. But I seemed to generate a lot of anger over there though.
It saddens me that we on the both the left and the right can't seem to get through to each other. I think the idea of their blog is great and I hope they can make it work.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 1:11 PM
Monday, June 27, 2005
This week I am helping to host The Cotillion. A beautiful bunch of conservative women who don't mind speaking their mind! My co-hosts this week are Knowledge is Power, NotADesperateHousewife, and MaxedOutMama.
You are welcome to join the dance by reading:
Beth at My Vast Right Wing Conspiracy grows weary of the anti-war rhetoric and the damage it may be doing to our men and women in uniform.
Merri Musings wonders how burning our flag is somehow free speech. I have often wondered that myself.
Mamamontezz's Mental Rumpus Room tells you men basically to NOT cheat. Seriously. You will regret it.
MaxedOutMama gives us an excellent analysis of the definitions of liberal and conservative from several voices that explain where liberals go wrong.
Knowledge Is Power asks if this is revenge or justice. I'll tell what isn't justice. SondraK not living in Texas and being my best friend....;-)
Little Miss Attila gives us the sadness of the choices we make in her usual very personal and well written fashion.
Portia Redicscovered has more on gitmo and how liberals have no room to make value judgments.
Reasoned Audacity asked us to let Big Bird fly on his own. The PBS saga of budget cuts.
KelliPundit reminds us of the history of anti-Semitism and what it proves to us.
NotADesperateHousewife discusses overmedicating our children in this society.
RightThinkingGirl looks at the relationship between journalists and confidential sources.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 10:22 PM
AOL Television and the Discovery Channel has had the American Public voting for "The Greatest American." The winner is Pres. Ronald Reagan!! (I couldn't agree more)
I also agree with the runners up: 2) Abraham Lincoln 3) Martin Luther King Jr. 4) George Washington 5) Benjamin Franklin.
But here is how some over at DU explain it. You know. Same old song. We are all just so stupid:
"Re: Reagan winning "Greatest American" -- I am **AMAZED** . . . . . . that anyone actually watches the Discovery Channel. But seriously, here's why he won:
1) The poll was conducted by AOL. Hence, it was most heavily advertised on AOL.
2) AOL is the country's most popular dial-up service.
3) With broadband internet becoming steadily more popular and less expensive across the nation, the largest group of AOLers today are probably rednecks -- or, more broadly (and more politely), those who live in rural parts of the country where broadband is not available and cheap.
4) Rednecks vote Republican.
5) There was only one real Republican in the top five. Everyone else was on our side."
You gotta love the consistency of their arrogance.
Isn't it interesting though that "Rednecks" would vote Martin Luther King Jr. in 3rd place??? No rednecks I know would. Such is the liberal logic over at DU.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 5:38 PM
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Supreme Court struggled in a pair of 5-4 rulings Monday to define how much blending of church and state is constitutionally permissible, allowing the Ten Commandments to be displayed outside the Texas state Capitol but not inside Kentucky courthouses."
The article goes on to say:
"In effect, the court said it was taking the position that issues of Ten Commandments displays in courthouses should be resolved on a case-by-case basis."
Well how about that! Imagine. The black robes on high don't get to decide for everyone????? You mean we actually get to look at each case and decide for ourselves in our own state???
Wow. What a concept.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 5:23 PM
Do you want to know what is in the new 'The Truth About Hillary' by Edward Klein, but don't want to give the guy money? PunditGuy is reading it for us! PunditGuy works in the publishing industry. He has decided over the next few weeks to take us through the book a few chapters at a time. (with his perspective, of course!)
Here is a excerpt from the first part:
"The prologue opens with Monica Lewinsky showing up to Bill's fiftieth birthday party in August of 1996. By the time I read the second paragraph, I knew what kind of book this was going to be.
Klein recounts a moment when Monica, with her back turned to Bill, reaches behind her and, touches the former president, uh, well...
Yeah, I was grossed out. Straight ahead gratuitousness on the part of Klein.
Once I recovered, it was pretty clear to me who Monica Lewinsky was during this time in her life. She was a hopeless loser. She was the scorned woman, not Hillary. Klein wastes no time proving to his readers that Monica was obsessed with Bill Clinton. I'm talked OBSESSED. Over the top. If even part of the story in the prologue is accurate, Monica is lucky she wasn't put down by Secret Service agents. Obviously, Bill wanted her kept close."
Yeah, it's like looking at a horrible car wreck as you drive by it, you just can't help but slow down and look even though you know you should just keep moving along.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 3:56 PM
National Geographic give us this fascinating news:
"New DNA studies suggest that all humans descended from a single African ancestor who lived some 60,000 years ago. To uncover the paths that lead from him to every living human, the National Geographic Society launched the Genographic Project, headed by Spencer Wells. The quest for "Adam" is the subject of a new television documentary that airs on the National Geographic Channel in the U.S. this Sunday."
Read the rest. It is pretty cool.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 11:18 AM
Sunday, June 26, 2005
BBC News gives us this:
"Euan Blair, the prime minister's eldest son, is to work in Washington DC as an intern for Republican politicians."
Although a spokesman said that Euan would also seek an internship with a Democrat politician, it seems what is upsetting to Democrats is the committee that Euan is interning for is the Committee on Rules in the House of Representatives. The Democrats see this committee as highly partisan.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 10:16 AM