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OK, Derb, I’ll take the bait. I’m a little concerned about your request for calipers for “anthropometric work”. I kind have a 1930s Kaiser Wilhelm Institute vision of foreheads and noses being measured for Slav features…

Dixie Flacks


In the Washington Post’s worrying profile of the “shrinking borders of dissent” surrounding the Dixie Chicks, news that their concerts now include the liberal MTV-founded Rock the Vote registration group and video celebrating NOW marches and gay pride events.

PS: Hope you didn’t miss the front-page Post story on Arnold today where friends testify he’s “evolved” into a “Shriver Republican.” Sounds like a very muscular RINO.


The Lord Protector


There is a storm raging in a teacup here–here, that is, in my town of
Huntington, Long Island. The town is celebrating its 350th anniversary this
year, and the town coat of arms has been much on display. Some
Irish-American activist noted that the coat of arms included elements from
that of Oliver Cromwell, who came from Huntingdon [sic], England, but who
treated the Irish harshly in 1649. People keep asking me for an opinion on
this. I can’t be bothered to form one: but for absolutely the best–that
is, most thoughtful & sensible–blogging on matters Irish, I refer readers
to John Fay. John’s today blog has a link to an
editorial in Long Island Newsday on the coat of arms flap. Sorry, but I
can’t summon any interest in this story. Cromwell was OK in my
book–basically a good man, who seems to have had an uneasy conscience about
the atrocities at Drogheda and Wexford. (He was, by the way, a great
philosemite–Sigmund Freud was so impressed by Cromwell’s kindness to the
Jews, he named his son “Oliver.”) They were, however, pretty much par for
the 17th-century course. The Thirty Years War had only just finished,
remember, and the English Civil War too. The Cromwellian horrors were the
final episodes in an 8-year Irish conflict that had actually begun with
Catholic massacres of Protestants… and so on. I shall get ten thousand
angy e-mails on this, droning on and on about the Saxon
yoke and the wickedness of the evil Brits. I don’t care. It was all a long
time ago. Memo to Irish-Americans: it is getting hard to find anyone in
Ireland who cares, either. You can’t get a conversation going about this
stuff over there. You guys are living in the past.

Web Briefing: July 25, 2014

End of The Roadmap?


Charles Krauthammer:

The State Department is ignoring, indeed excusing, Palestinians’ violation of their central obligation under Phase I of the road map. At the very same time, the State Department is threatening Israel with sanctions over a fence that is nowhere mentioned in the road map.

This kind of amnesia and one-sidedness is not new. We have been here before. It was called Oslo. And we know how it ended.


Steve Martin


Bleg: Sliding Calipers


Can anyone help? I need some sliding calipers for anthropometric work.
(This has NOTHING WHATSOEVER TO DO with National Review.) I thought I would
easily find some instrument company on the Internet willing to sell me a
decent pair for $20 or so. Nope, couldn’t find, not in USA anyway. Anyone
know where I can quickly get such things? Reply please to
[email protected], subject line “Calipers.” Thank you.

Re: The War Against Christianity


Got the link messed up there–let’s try again.



You’ll get your dose MONDAY, fyi.

A.M. Arnold


Arnold was not impressive in his round of morning interview shows this morning. On “Today,” Cal. Dem. chairman Art Torres quickly started by noting how Arnold couldn’t answer any of Matt Lauer’s substance questions, and the state doesn’t need on-the-job training for governors. He talked over interviewers on most channels, speaking in 6o-second bursts in the vaguest of generalities about how he loves the children, I believe the children are our future (Whitney Houston lyrics, anyone?) but saying very little about what Davis has done wrong other than somehow creating a bad business climate. Elite media are going to demand more substance, and he better acquire some.

PS: He also declared he wouldn’t be answering any questions about his private life. As if that will stop the oppo brigade.

The War Against Christianity--a Dispatch


In the People’s Republic of Canada, a schoolteacher is suspended without

The Innocent 11?


It wouldn’t be a stretch for the Washington Post piece today on the jihad 11 in Virgninia to be entered as evidence in their defense. Rita Katz and Josh Devon took a much different view on NRO in June.

A Tearing Down of Modern Poetry


Just When You Had Given Up On Journalism




“His views are antithetical to our position about the inclusion of gays,
lesbians, transgendered and two-spirited people in our society.”

Anyone whose eye was stopped by that word “two-spirited” when reading the
link from my previous post: so far as I can discover, it refers to
transgendered persons of the Native American persuasion. They have a male
spirit and a female spirit, see?

This is strictly a Canadian usage. The preferred formula in the U.S., at
any rate in an educational context, is: “gay, lesbian, transgendered and
questioning.” Since we have Native Americans too, my guess is that this
will soon change; though whether the Questionings will submit meekly to
being displaced by the Two-Spiriteds, or whether a very unpleasant fight
will break out (two falls, two spirits, or a knock-out to decide the
winner), I would not venture to speculate.

Free Speech Watch


Whether you agree with the Pope’s opinions on homosexuality or not (I don’t, not that that should worry him in the slightest), he is entitled to his views, and Roman Catholic clergy should, obviously, be free to publicize them. In Ireland, however, there may be some limits on their ability to do so. Not a pretty story.

More Arnold


Reason’s Jacob Sullum on the Schwarzenegger candidacy. He’s enthusiastic, sort of, well for the spectacle, anyway. The article also includes this classic quote from the great man:

“I come from Austria, a socialistic country. There you can hear 18-year-olds talking about their pension. But me, I wanted more. I wanted to be the best. Individualism like that is incompatible with socialism. I felt I had to come to America, where the government wasn’t always breathing down your neck or standing on your shoes.”

Don’t try saying that in the European parliament, Arnie.

Boring Is The New Interesting


Iced Issa


The withdrawal of Issa is merely bowing to one of the political realities of California these days. With 53 congressman (or have I lost count??) it is almost impossible to become known statewide, especially when you spend most of your time back in Washington. Even senior Republicans in or close to the leadership like David Dreier or Chris Cox don’t have very high name recognition or identification outside their regions. This is one reason by both Cox and Dreier have been reluctant to run for statewide office. This is a constant problem for office holders of both parties here in the state. Add to that the media backwater of Sacramento (which I mentioned in a previous post), and it is a daunting task for gain the publicity necessary to move ahead on modern politics. I suspect Issa had some polls showing him doing very badly, even without Arnold in the race. Arnold simply made it impossible, as no one else is going to get much press. Even Davis isn’t getting much press today.

Is There a Hispanic Vote? Ii


Raul Damas — a smart pollster and a nice guy — HREF=”″>disagrees
with my views on the so-called Hispanic vote.

Overly large political shorthand can obscure real targets of
opportunity. Raul mentions “pro-life voters.” They are just as
non-monolithic as are “Hispanic voters.” Congressman Dennis Kucinich
(Dem-Ohio) can readily target “seamless garment” pro-life, anti-death
penalty Catholic voters while President Bush would be wiser to seek
pro-life, pro-death penalty conservative Protestant and Catholic voters.

In a long-ago piece for NRO, HREF=””>”Assimilation,
not Amnesty”
, I quoted from a Wall Street Journal story on
conflicts in New York City between more established Puerto Rican immigrants
and Mexican newcomers: “the nation’s Hispanic communities are not a
cohesive unit. Often, they are united by little more than Spanish and a
Census Bureau definition.”

Yet “one size fits all” Hispanic politics led Republican political
consultants in the late ’90’s to decree that the way for the GOP to win the
Hispanic vote was to make Puerto Rico our 51st state. Never mind that
Mexican Americans and Cuban Americans had little interest in Puerto Rico.

By contrast, the Castro dictatorship is not much of an issue among
Hispanics in Texas or California. But Janet Reno’s decision to send Elian
Gonzalez back to Casto’s Cuba HREF=””>caused
Florida’s Cuban American voters to back Bush in 2000. Elian, not Spanish
campaign speeches, made George Bush our President.

Finally, there are some Hispanic voters who intensely resent getting
campaign literature addressed to them in Spanish. These
highly-assimilated, English-speaking Hispanics are natural
Republicans. Today’s bipartisan Spanish-first campaign style repels those
folks. Does the GOP truly wish its message to be “assimilation is a bad

Issa On Ice


So does this mean now that Issa’s funding of the recall will look more magnanimous?


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